Sunday, June 29, 2008

Do All You Can

The following letter is to be read by local leaders to their Fob congregations today, Sunday, June 29, 2008:

Dear Friends of Ben,

It has come to our attention that throughout the United States activists are fighting to corrupt traditional marriage and in doing so attacking the very fabric of our society. Today we ask you to do all you can to fight back, to ensure that the only legitimate definition of marriage is our definition, because it is a well-known fact that two different definitions of the same thing cannot coexist in the same country, or the entire universe will implode. It is for this reason that we ask you to set aside your ability to think for yourselves so you can campaign for the following political cause that we decree as just and holy.

As you know, in the recent past activist judges have legitimized so-called same-haircolor "marriages." This is unacceptable. The Book of Ben chapter 3 verse 19 clearly states that "he who lieth with another of the same hair color in the way that a dark-haired man lieth with a light-haired woman has sinned, and must be stoned to death." Now modern-day fobby scripture has revealed to us that the Book of Ben chapters 1 through 10 are no longer the Word of Ben, which is why we no longer stone sinners to death (well, mostly just because it's illegal, but we're working on that; see next week's official letter to be read in Fob congregations), but we know that the first part of that verse is still true. We know this because we have an icky feeling inside whenever we see dark-haired people kissing other dark-haired people. (Light-haired people kissing light-haired people, on the other hand, kind of turns us on--being dark-haired people ourselves, and thus righteously attracted to light-haired people--but we know this is very very very wicked and must be condemned publicly.)

Furthermore, we know that children deserve to be raised by one dark-haired parent and one light-haired parent. This is the way Ben intended it to be, and we know that because that's how it was on Leave it to Beaver. Children raised by two dark-haired parents or two light-haired parents will grow up to be either serial killers or cross-dressers, and really is there much difference between the two? Yes, we know that scientific research does not support this theory, but that's just because all scientists are pro-same-haircolor activists. Whatever you do, don't listen to them.

Now, some people have a problem with constitutional amendments that define marriage as between a dark-haired person and a light-haired person because these amendments are based on doctrines of the Fob religion, which apparently not every person in America believes in (yet). To these people we say Poo on you. Nah nah nah nah nah nah, we're not listening. Perhaps the founding fathers of our great nation (and the founding fathers of each state thereof) neglected to mention in their constitution(s) that marriage should only be between a dark-haired person and a light-haired person, but this was clearly an oversight. They didn't mention it not because they didn't intend it, but because they forgot to. We know this because we've rewritten history so that all founding fathers were believing Fobs, or would have been if they'd had a chance. We're giving them that chance now, by rewriting our nation's constitutions.

To our friends who have already slipped through the cracks of our country's legal system and have "married" people of the same haircolor and started "families" before we could make such an act unconstitutional, rest assured that this is all for your own good. Your "marriages" aren't real marriages and your "families" aren't real families anyway. If you had legal rights to your children, you would only use them to encourage them to be serial killers or cross-dressers (or both) anyway. You don't really want that, do you? Don't answer that. We don't want to know.

To our fellow Fobs who are same-haircolor-attracted but don't act on it, please know that we love you and think about you a lot--at least every time we have to fight for another constitutional amendment ensuring that you never ever marry each other. We know that you must live lonely lives while in this mortal existence, especially now that we've told you that you should no longer ignore your desires and marry an opposite-haircolored person, lest that marriage fail and you blame us for it (sorry to those of you who got married before we changed our mind on this one). So long as you never ever ever ever so much as think about kissing someone of your same haircolor, let alone "marrying" them, you'll live a tolerable life here, and we're pretty sure you'll be happy after you die. If you fail, you will be miserable for all eternity, but rest assured that Ben loves you anyway.

Signed with love and righteous affection,

Mr. Fob

Thursday, June 26, 2008

B-Rock vs. McPain

Ever wonder what a breakdance showdown with G.W. Bush, John McCain, and Condoleeza Rice versus Barack Obama and Hillary Clinton would look like? Wonder no more.

Tuesday, June 24, 2008

Horton Heard a Who?

Tonight we saw Horton Hears a Who, which turned out to be much more entertaining than I anticipated. It's interesting on a philosophical level too, whether you look at it as a fable whose moral is that you should have more faith in science, or as an allegory about humanity's relationship with deity--with the disturbing possibility that the gods may or may not believe in us.

Monday, June 23, 2008

To the 2%

Tonight FoxyJ sent me the link to this feature on religion in the United States in USA Today. Besides being a fascinating survey of religious beliefs and demography, and on top of that a wicked cool interface, the feature was well-timed for me in that Foxy sent it while I was stewing over this article I read tonight about the LDS Church, once again, telling its members to vote for anti-family legislation disguised in pro-family rhetoric. Seeing via USA Today that Mormons make up only 2% of California's population helped me put things in perspective and calm down a bit. I'm still angry that people feel that denying basic rights to families who don't fit an ideal invented in the 1950s is somehow Christlike or even humane, but at least the impact of this particular instance is limited by demography.

As for the small portion of that 2% of Californians who are Mormon who happen to read my blog, as well as any other Californians who may have a say in the anti-family constitutional amendment that the LDS Church believes so strongly should be passed, even if I believed I had the kind of power to make people do whatever I say, I wouldn't tell you to vote or campaign against this proposed amendment based solely on the fact that I say so. Rather, I ask only that you carefully study the facts before making any decisions, which is exactly what the LDS Church tells its members to do in situations not involving gay people marrying each other.

Gay people will couple up and raise children whether or not they're allowed to legally marry. The only thing denying them marriage rights accomplishes is to severely limit their ability to give their partners and their children the legal protections they deserve. My friend Scot, who is planning on legally marrying his husband of thirteen years (also the father of his two sons) next month, has put together articles on the statistical effects of same-sex unions, arguments for marriage equality, and the "ideal family" argument against same-sex marriage.

Saturday, June 21, 2008

It's 2:30 in the afternoon and I'm not dressed yet

I suppose this would be more meaningful if it were not Saturday, when most people don't get dressed before 2:30 in the afternoon, but rest assured that if I wanted to I could do this any day of the week.

That's all.

Saturday, June 14, 2008

Master² Fob

Last night was the Information School convocation. The university-wide commencement is going on right now, but I decided I didn't need three more hours of sitting in my robes of the unholy priesthood in order to feel graduated. FoxyJ, my mom, my parents-in-law, and my sister-in-law were all at the convocation last night so they can bear witness that I did indeed have my name called, walk across a stage, get hooded, and receive a fake diploma.

I had a strange sense of disconnectedness last night. As opposed to the last two times I graduated from college, this time I didn't quite feel like I belonged there. As I sat there listening to the speeches and watching my fellow graduates walk across the stage, I tried to figure out why I had this strong sense of detachment.

I decided it comes largely from the way I approached this program. Whereas I got my English degrees more than anything because I loved studying literature, I came here with only one goal in mind--to earn the degree I needed to get a better library job. This was never meant to be a wonderful college experience but rather a means to an end, a necessary hoop I had to jump through to move forward in my career. With this in mind, I didn't get very involved in school beyond taking classes.

I did work in the library last year and I'm glad I did because if not I might not have made any friends at all. This past year, though, I quit my reference job to volunteer in cataloging, where I worked with cataloging librarians but very few students, and on top of that I had a fellowship that required me to take Spanish and European studies courses so I was taking only about one class from my program per quarter. This last quarter my one LIS class was an online course (and a bad experience at that), so I had basically no live interaction at all with LIS students.

And then there's the fact that last year my personal life was a complete mess so now there are some less-than-pleasant memories associated with my UW experience, and of course the fact that I'm not jumping right into a library career as I'd planned to, calling into question the point of all this. I remind myself, though, that I did learn some valuable things here and I did have some great experiences, and my degree will be very practical and useful a year or two from now when I'm ready for a full-time job. Apart from the degree, here are some of the happy memories I'm taking with me:
  • Everything cataloging-related. My cataloging courses were my favorite LIS classes and my volunteer work at the library was a blast.
  • I also had a great metadata class where I stretched myself to learn completely new and unfamiliar concepts, and even though I'll probably never use these skills I really loved my readers' advisory course with superlibrarian Nancy Pearl.
  • I taught myself html and css well enough to make this portfolio from scratch (no html editing software, thank you very much). If you're at all familiar with the back-end of library catalogs or can imagine you were, it's pretty damn cool. The iSchool liked it enough to use it as one of the sample portfolios on their website.
  • I had some great jobs here--in the library, in admissions, even the fancy soap and silverware store that got me through that first quarter.
  • Speaking of which, I only paid tuition that first quarter and then last summer quarter. All five of my other quarters were paid for either by my admissions job or my FLAS fellowship.
  • And speaking of my FLAS fellowship, the three Spanish classes I took this year were among my favorite classes ever, particularly my play production course (which reminds me--I finally got the DVD of our plays this week so I'll have to figure out how to YouTube a couple scenes).
  • Perhaps one of the best experiences here for our family has been not mine but S-Boogie's--she got to be in a wonderful (and free) preschool program and made some great friends there, at church, and in our apartment complex.
So yeah, overall there has been some real good to come out of these past two years. But I'm ready now to move onto the next phase--my stay-at-home dad phase, Foxy's PhD phase, S-Boogie's kindergarten phase, and Little Dude's Terrible Two phase. Okay, maybe that last part not so much. But still.

Thursday, June 05, 2008

Finish Line in Sight

Today I attended my Last Class Forever And Ever Until The End Of Time and then I went to the student union building to pick up my cap and gown--which after next weekend will hang in my closet Forever And Ever Until The End Of Time because they made me buy them instead of renting, as I did the last two times I graduated. In the next day or two I need to finish up one last small assignment, and then next Wednesday I will take a final and be done with school Forever And Ever Until The End Of Time .

P.S. Graduation is next week Friday (school convocation) and Saturday (general procession). I accept gifts in the form of cash, check, money order, or gift certificates. iTunes gift cards are also cool.

Sunday, June 01, 2008

A Little Confession

As much as I love the Foxmobile and know it was the best choice for our family, I still have Prius envy. Every time I see a Prius pass by (every eleventh car in Seattle--I counted), I think of the gas we would save and more importantly, the message we would send if we had our very own Prius: that we are tree-hugging, war-hating*, trash-recycling liberals and proud of it. But alas, even a five-year-old Prius would have cost more than our brand new Rondo, and without the sixth and seventh seats in back. I suppose I'll just have to start a blog in order to broadcast my liberal haughtiness.

*I'm not sure, but I think all Priuses come equipped with anti-war and/or anti-Bush bumper stickers.