Disclaimer: Some content is inappropriate for readers under 18 years of age or those offended by swear words, references to sexuality, atheism, and libertarianism.

Monday, March 31, 2008

Georgia, Geeeooorgia...

I just spent the weekend in Atlanta, Georgia, on a little mini-vacation with my darling husband and little munchkin. Thanks to Priceline, my man was able to book us two nights at a hotel we otherwise would never have stayed at: the Georgian Terrance Hotel. To say it was "posh" would be underrated. I felt like something that would normally be scraped off one's shoe prior to entering such an establishment, especially since I didn't bother to pack any of my "nice" outfits for the trip. Usually on our road trips we endeavor to stay at the cheapest, least scary motels possible along the highway in order to best soak up the local atmosphere at a multitude of pit stops at an affordable price while still getting the adrenaline rush required to stay alive in a vaguely Hitchcokian environment. The door man called our little toddler "Your Highness" as she waddled through the door and that made me smile, though it did look an awful lot like a scene out of a bad Disney live action movie.

My goal was to visit the Center for Puppetry Arts and see the temporary exhibit on Jim Henson. It was a very small collection of memorabilia, and very very little of the information was new to me, but the charm of the place was not lost on me or my family. Below is a picture I took of Kermit in the atrium where photos were allowed to be taken (I know it's not a great picture but it's either that or the one with my stupid big reflection in the glass):

My daughter was absolutely delighted to see so many puppets in one place and even sat through an hour long puppet show without screaming once, except in delight! When one of the characters on the stage was stuck on a tree limb, our little one turned to my husband and said "Daddy, help..." I guess this marks the beginning of her thinking everything she sees in the movies and on stage is real and we'll have to prepare ourselves for future viewings of Charlotte's Web and Bambi.

I really thought we were going to have to do the infamous "parental walk of shame" out of that place with a squirming loud child, but it didn't happen. I really shouldn't have been that surprised as she tends to be a rather well behaved little squirt, but asking a kid just shy of two years old to sit quietly for over and hour (we had to get in there half an hour early to make sure we got seated at all) is most certainly a task left off of Hercules' list of Shit To Do.

I was pissed to see note in the guest book that I had missed the cast of Avenue Q by one day, but ah well. I've got a ticket to see that show this year anyway.

Quotes of the Day

GigglyBoy: Who's Anne Frank?
LoudMouthGirl: She a Nazi... I mean Germany! I mean...
StraightFAthlete: She work for the poe-lees- she dead."

What?!! Good golly, miss Molly.

HistoryTeacher: Where was Stalin from? I'll accept U.S.S.R., Russia, or Soviet Union.
LoudMouthGirl: He from all those places?

The teacher has only gone over the fact that all names are referring to the same region half a billion times, of course she has an excuse for not retaining that fact. We just hope that giving them more possible correct answers may result in their actually getting one answer on the whole test right.

... And it's only Monday.

Emirati Hospitality Extended to Afghanistan.

Emiratis make me proud again with their handling of aid given in Afghanistan alongside the US troops. It seems they provide the bedside manner that they can afford to give and I'm sure it's very much appreciated.

No Warm Apple Pie? Why Not Try a Picnic Table?!

I'm telling you... If you can't have sex with a picnic table in your own exposed front garden near an elementary school, where can you have sex with a piece of garden furniture of your choice? Can you imagine how embarrassed his wife must be? To be second place to an umbrella hole? Yeesh.
Note: Nowhere on the above instructions does it state "Insert Penis Here".

Tuesday, March 25, 2008

10 Weird Things I Do.

1) If I'm sitting on a public toilet and someone else enters the bathroom, I cough to make sure they are fully aware of my presence. As if, somehow, the lock on my stall won't work and they'll come crashing in to see me sitting there with my knickers around my ankles.

2) If I get a hangnail, I fiddle with it constantly until it falls off completely.

3) I pretend to punch my fattest cat in his ample stomach and make action movie fighting sound effects as I do it. He just stares at me and purrs.

4) I do "happy dances" as I pass colleagues in the hallways at work. They probably suspect Valium abuse.

5)If my lips are really dry, I tuck my upper lip under itself so I look like an oversized hamster.

6) When I'm in Britain and I buy a Big Issue (magazine written by the homeless), I feel the need to hold it visibly so I won't feel guilty when I pass other Big Issue vendors. They may follow me and break my knees.

7) Almost all of my pets and my daughter each have a "theme song". For some reason, for our cantankerous aggressive dog, it's Sugar Sugar by Archies. For our fattest cat, it's the tune of Goldfinger, but since his name is "Spud", it has become Spud-Muffin. I sing their songs frequently. Sometimes dancing is involved.

8) Rather than hold a flat hand up to my mouth when I yawn, I've started holding up a loosely clenched fist. I have no idea why. It has occurred to me that I must look like I'm miming giving someone a blow job, so I should probably stop.

9) I randomly quote Monty Python, Space Balls, History of the World Part I, Airplane!, and Black Adder when around family and friends and STILL laugh at the quotes. "You ever seen a grown man naked?" It's not cool, but at least I don't go beyond one or two quotes per sitting. Any more is REALLY lame.

10) Regardless of how a person looks, I wonder what sex with that person may be like. Not necessarily with me, per se, just what their techniques or appearance would be. Sometimes this is something I enjoy dwelling upon, other times it's nothing short of a gag-inducing masochistic endeavor. I have a feeling this topic will become a new game to play with my good friends at work over Friday drinks.

Sunday, March 23, 2008

Vanilla Cookies with Peanut Butter Dipped in Chocolate

Pretty self explanatory, but anyway, they turned out well. Fun to do with kids too. Had I thought about taking pictures of the finished product, I may have made more of an effort to make it look pretty, but the thought occured to me too late.
Like my retro 50's bowl? Bought a huge part of that set from a charity shop. I love charity shops.

Saturday, March 22, 2008

Busy Time for Holidays

I'm rather busy at the moment, but I wanted to wish everyone a great time celebrating Holi, Eid, Easter, Persian New Year, Purim, Magha Puja. My husband and I will be scattering plastic eggs about the house filled with little treats for our daughter to hunt for tomorrow. I used to do that for my sister when we were much younger and I learned the hard way that it really is a good idea to make some sort of note of where you hid them... Finding a little chocolate treat months later under my ass on the easy chair was totally not cool.

I found a new recipe I'm going to try... I'm feeling ill right now, so I wanted something simple to do with my daughter's help...

You get vanilla wafers, sandwich them with creamy peanut butter in the middle, and then dip half of it into melted semi-sweet chocolate then leave to cool down. I'll let you know if it turns out well or not.

I really want to get back into serious cooking but so many things keep coming up to exhaust me.

Thursday, March 20, 2008

Why Asians Love Their Peace Sign!

On the subject of the origin of signals/signs of peace, I came across an interesting post from Stuff Asian People Like (the spin off of Stuff White People Like) which puts forth a number of theories as to why Asian people (not including Indian, Pakistani, we're talking further East...) love to hold up the "peace sign" whenever they pose for photos. I often wondered that, and was delighted to see the topic being addressed by Asians who also interviewed more Asians to examine varied responses. I'm tempted to go with the theory that it's as much as gesture of posing for a photo as smiling is.

In my family, my sister and I adopted the well-established "goofy teeth, wide eyes, and generally mentally-deficient looking pose" for almost all photos. We even went so far as to pose appropriately right up until the moment before the flash, and then go straight into goofy-mode.

My mother's eyesight is not what it once was, which often leads to moments of side-splitting hilarity. One such instance involved my mother blowing up a picture of me and my sister, framing it and putting it on her wall. My sister glanced at it, did a double take, and squinted at it before laughing out loud.

LilSis: Ma, did you notice something?

Poor Suffering Mother: No, what?

LilSis: Um. We're making goofy-ass faces in this picture.

Poor Suffering Mother: What? Aww. Can't you girls ever post nicely for a photo? Geez. I've had guests over and they've seen that thing... Aww. Bloody hell.

Origins of the Peace Symbol.

Interesting little story from the BBC on the origins and history of the peace symbol/sign. It apparently originated from the overlapping of the N and D from the flag-signaling alphabet, which is meant to stand for "Nuclear Disarmament". I had no idea. Huh.

Wednesday, March 19, 2008

Woman Survives Fall and Impales Herself on Metal Rod.

Holy crap! And I thought I was having a bad day with this damn flu... To add insult to injury, the poor woman has a bra attached to her person (she was gathering laundry at the time of the fall), so not only is she in tremendous pain but everyone can see what her undergarments look like. Not that I honestly think anyone cares, least of all the poor woman in question. They really do have an impressive photo of the incident. Don't worry, it's not gory.


You've probably already seen Beardyman, but just in case you haven't, here is one of the most creative beatboxers I've ever seen...

Kitchen Diaries - The most amazing bloopers are here

And here's another of Beardyman:

Insane Beatbox - Beardyman - Funny video clips are a click away

Arthur C. Clarke Passes Away

What? WHAT? Ah crap. They always go in 3's don't they? The cast of the original Star Trek must be getting nervous at the passing of a second nerd god, Arthur C. Clarke, right on the heels of Gary Gygax. Dammit. Well, I guess it was his turn, he was 90 after all.

Tuesday, March 18, 2008

Another Reason to Go to Japan.

I already really wanted to go to Japan... Now I really want to go. A fertility festival featuring phallic food and huge wooden penises being paraded around?

How cool is that? Talk about being relaxed in your sexuality... Somehow I don't think this is followed by a Pussy Parade, though. Now THAT would really be cool. Oh the mind boggles at what kind of food they would serve at that... Oh the bad part of me wants to make taco and pie jokes, but the better part of me is going to stop. Now.

Monday, March 17, 2008

My Little One.

Funnily enough, I was a little more active than usual this weekend. (A little more than THIS lady, I can assure you). My daughter was invited to TWO birthday parties on the same day, one in the morning, one in the afternoon, and I was determined to fight my lazy-ass inclination and take her to both.

The morning birthday took place at one of those indoor bouncy castle playgrounds you can rent for kids' parties. My daughter (who apparently inherited the short-ass gene from both my and my husband's paternal grandmothers) was far too Oompa Loompa-ish to do most of it herself. I started to feel like Smithers assisting Mr. Burns. To scale a pretty high wall with her in one arm, I had to climb one-handed, chuck her over the top like she was a grenade, and peer over to see she made it okay (okay, not quite, I set her carefully on the top and pleaded with her to make sure she waited for mommy before going down the precipitous slide.)

I was convinced I could hear John Williams' music playing in the background. When we were asked to move to the next room we were the last ones to pass under the sliding garage-type door (her short little legs delayed us), and I came very close to dramatically rolling under the nearly-closed door to complete the tribute. A friend later suggested I should have left her on the other side then pulled her through at the last second. While it would have entertained me immeasurably, I had to think about the future and didn't want my daughter to be crossed off future invite lists. Plus there's only so much therapy we can afford to get her.

For the second party, my daughter was the only girl invited and so, of course, she proceeded to put on a show for the boys by randomly pulling down her pants and doing the "no-toilet-paper-left-on-the-roll" shuffle towards me. I have no idea what her motivation was, but we suspected an itch behind her diaper. I suddenly realized what an inconvenience such an itch would be and made a mental note to teach her the word "itchy" to save her on future frustrations.

When my mother stayed in our house just prior to her birth and for a couple of months after, she reminded me of how important it is to sing to your child. I'm not a bad singer and so often try to make the conscious decision to sing to her and expose her to charming little ditties I've learned over the years. Now that she can speak, she's able to express her feelings towards my efforts:

"Mommy? Stop it."

She's destined to be a theater critic. Either that or a world-class sprinter. I often laughed at mothers I saw chasing after their squealing toddlers in the mall and then thought "that'll be some day". It still makes me laugh, even when I'm the mother, although it quickly loses its charm when it happens in a restaurant because only my baby can get between me and a good meal.

I'm writing this partly to be able to reflect upon these moments when she's a teenager: to remember a time when her flatulence was still cute, I could stop her tears with a kiss and some tickles, and she doesn't hate my guts.

Friday, March 14, 2008

Driving in the Middle East

In light of the recent disaster on the Dubai- Abu Dhabi road in the United Arab Emirates (pictured above) here are some comments on driving in the ME from BBC news readers (by that I mean "readers of the news", not "newsreaders"). I like the one about drivers in Israel not knowing how to handle rain! We say that all the time here. It's like all hell breaks lose and there are accidents everywhere.

In my own experience, it's rather like bumper cars or go-carts, only with more expensive and more destructive vehicles, usually driven by less than qualified drivers, minors, or rich kids who don't give a shit who they hurt and will only ever slow down if they see a female walking alongside the road so he can desperately try to either get her number or haul her off to rape her in the desert. Okay, okay, not EVERY driver there does that, but I'm describing the worst ones.
I recall a time when I was so sick and tired of all these cars slowing down to try to talk to me that I kicked the last one I saw that day. It wasn't as dramatic as I'd hope as I was wearing sandals that day. It was actually kind of pathetic and the guy laughed.

Should you ever find yourself driving in the Middle East, please take these factors into consideration:

1) Red lights are optional.
2) Rules don't apply to the rich.
3) No, that isn't a car driving itself, it's a 10 year old kid.
4) Indicators? We don't need no stinkin' indicators. You'll KNOW when I'm changing lanes when you see my license plate inches from your face.
5) Windows may be tinted to the point that the driver may as well be wearing a tea cosy over his head.
6) Single digit vanity plates are worth more than your child's college education.
7) Should you take a taxi alone and you're female, assume it as a given that 40% of your taxi drivers will try to molest you, even if you're in your damn school uniform and you tell the man you don't care if he "loves" you, just turn right at the next stop sign so you can get out the damn car and get started on your homework.
8) NEVER under ANY circumstances slow down as you approach a zebra crossing (crosswalk) because no one else freaking does. Those pedestrians know damn well what they're getting themselves in to when they take one step out onto that road. It's Frogger from here on in, baby!

The funny thing is, I thought it was bad there, but nothing prepared me for Cairo! In Cairo, LANES are optional, but that's an entirely different story for another day.

We're Gonna Need a Bigger Boat.

Holy shit! No! Just... NO! You DON'T play tickle monster with a freaking Great White shark! Bruce is not your damn friend! God, I was pee myself if I were offered a sum of money to do this, because I know I'm enough of a whore to be bought that way. Oh no, I took another look at the photo... That is so wrong.

I have nothing more than a healthy, rational fear of fucking great big ancient creatures that could eat me in two bites at the most, but I guess it's the closes thing to a phobia I've got. My brother and sister-in-law did one of those scuba things in cages alongside Great Whites and I tried not to think too hard about it. I would probably love the thrill, if I managed to survive the major coronary I would receive in the process, I suppose.

Thursday, March 13, 2008

Still No Gays in Iran.

My heart aches for the gay and lesbian Iranians trying to flee persecution but are being turned away. After all, if there are no gays in Iran, surely this means they need homes elsewhere? I know there must be hundreds of refugees from all over the world who also deserve the right to live in safety, but if an entire country doesn't want a minority population of its own people to have the right to live, and it would be impossible to convince them otherwise, then surely as members of the same human race, someone else should be able to accept them with open arms?

The Arrival

I have just enjoyed The Arrival by Shaun Tan recently. I say "enjoyed" because it's hard to say I've "read" a book with no words. It's a graphic novel that tells the tale of a migrant who leaves his home and family to make his way to a new land in the hopes of success. To allow for greater audience empathy, everything is depicted as alien to us as it is to him. The food, animals, clothing, architecture, written language are unfamiliar and even slightly distressing to the "reader" as none of it looks like anything we are accustomed to. I've known the horror of looking at a paper handed to me written entirely in a language I didn't understand and was expected to do well on, so I was ready to dole out sympathy pretty early on.

What I found particularly interesting was the representation of the menace that drives these migrants to seek out new beginnings. Our protagonist escaped a land in which a huge beast appears to dwell, twining his spiny tentacles along all the rows of houses. Another migrant's memories show giants marching abroad bearing monstrous vacuum devices that consume birds from the sky, shingles from the roofs, and people who couldn't flee in time. Indeed, the whole place seems to consist of migrants with similar tales of escape and salvation in this new land.

It really is a charming book and I look forward to enjoying more of Mr. Tan's work.

Wednesday, March 12, 2008

Adolf Whatshisname.

Some bugger with silly facial hair

Prior to being formally taught the details of World War II in class, I would hope that you knew a fragment or two of the details (except of course if you're educated at the Ahmadinejad School of Selective History, in which case that whole "Holocaust" thing didn't really happen) and that you'd at least know some of the countries involved, perhaps a leader or two, who won, etc...

It appears that this current bunch of freshman have not only never given any thought to this information prior to class, but continue to be as absorbent as cellophane diapers. After some weeks of discussing WWII, doing papers, worksheets, watching videos, etc. This question was asked:

Who was Germany's fascist leader during World War II?

In two different classes, the student asked this question did not know the answer. One student was even prompted with "he was the leader of the Nazi party." Nothin'. Not a sausage. Nada. B'doon saut. As tempted as I want to put a finger to my top lip and raise my right arm in salute, I didn't. I sat there and wept silently. I had just come from their math class in which they had collectively managed to forget everything they had ever been taught about the distributive property, so I was disheartened to say the least. It seems we had filled their heads with all that we could and reached capacity for now. If we could get them to forget a few vital functions, we could maybe make space for more knowledge, but then without the knowledge and memory of why breathing is important, the effort may be fruitless.

Sadly, the same thing happened last year too.

I wasn't the best student in school, by any means, but I could tell you who the short-arse with the ridiculous Charlie Chaplin 'tache was, and so could all of my classmates.

I could spend some time hypothesizing as to why they fail to retain some of the more obvious scraps of information, bringing into discussion cultural priorities, background knowledge, home environment, the almost infinitesimally small probability of reading for pleasure and independent knowledge acquisition, virtually nonexistent study habits, and the sense of entitlement without appreciation of what those before us have sacrificed in order that we may live the lives we do... But I just can't be bothered.

One of these days, I'm going to be carted out of the damn building screaming "HITLER! HITLER! IT'S FUCKING ADOLF HITLER!" and sent off to sensitivity training and/or the loony bin.

Dying Father Gets to See His Unborn Child.

Heart-breaking, yet sweet story...

Chuck Norris.

You've probably already seen or heard of the "Chuck Norris Facts", but if you haven't- here they are. They make me laugh. I'm lame, I know.

Tuesday, March 11, 2008


Yes! Yes! Oh, YES! (Nerd-gasm) Please let it be as good as the graphic novel...

Cartoon on Arabnews.com

Ahhh... I love the smell of irony in the morning.

Sesame Tree In Northern Ireland.

Northern Ireland is acquiring their very own incarnation of the Sesame Street concept entitled Sesame Tree (there's a clip of it available through the above link. I totally dig the accents as well as the theme shown therein!). This will be the second international version of Sesame Street to be centered around a tree, that I know of. The other is the version produced in Bangladesh, Sisimpur, which revolves around a banyan tree, I believe... (note the paragraph that explains how they get Sisimpur to the remote regions of Bangladesh!)

Sesame Street may not have brought about the kind of world peace Jim Henson had hoped for, but it's a charming step in the right direction! After all, didn't it teach us all how to SHARE?

Though it's not entirely comprehensive, you may find some of your favorite classic moments from the American version here. Or else you can have a peek at all the international versions out there delighting children all over the world.

Monday, March 10, 2008

Free Rice Video

If you haven't gone to Free Rice yet, please do... Here's a video to explain the whole concept. I don't usually support the concept of handouts, but this rice is going to the poorest populations and if you can save one person, one child from starving with a little click of a mouse and a flexing of your vocabulary skills, why not?

Pride of Baghdad.

I finally got around to read Brian K. Vaughan's Pride of Baghdad, a fictional story based on the escape of some lions from Baghdad Zoo during the 2003 US bombings of Baghdad. (If you don't know the story and you're interested in reading it, don't click on the following news link. It gives away the ending). I remember reading the news story when it happened.

Vaughan explores the true meaning of "freedom" within the context of a country struggling to survive war. Is it better to be "free" but to have only rubble to call your home and no food to eat, or to live under a tyrannical dictator but with less of a chance of dying of starvation? It's all well and good for me to sit here and say freedom is worth a generation or two (or more) for the sake of tomorrow's children, but what about the people suffering in the mean time? If I were in their place, would I see it as such a sweet and honorable thing to die in the hopes that future generations will reap the rewards... Hopefully?

One can draw parallels to various different cultures as they experience the growing pains of emancipation... The pilgrims seeking independence in the new Union, the slaves following the Civil War... In retrospect, the sacrifices are worth it, but that's easily said by an outsider looking in to another culture or time.

After all, we know the truth that freedom isn't free... It cost a buck oh five. (Courtesy of Trey Parker and Matt Stone).

Friday, March 07, 2008

Animated Short.

I don't know which I find more charming... The visuals or the sound effects. It won my heart even moreso in the fact that the little girl looks a lot like my daughter. May she be as mischevious, curious, and lovely.

Cinderblocks For Sale.

Hilarious Craig's list posting I saw on List of the Day. Real or not, I think it's funny.

Where Do We Go From Here?

Someone (I think the name was "Ito") directed readers on Rambling Hal's blog to this post by a gentleman named Ali Shakir. I must say, I share just about every opinion he expressed in his post.

If we are to take it as a given that the country of Israel is not going anywhere (which I'm guessing isn't really an option in a lot of people's eyes, but let's pretend for a moment, shall we?) then alternatives to all this violent activity have to be found. This can only take a positive course if the Palestinians had access to a decent infrastructure, medical facilities, and an education. Denying access to all these things invites the sense of hopelessness, frustration, and dependence that can cripple a people and put resentment and malice in the place of hope.

So let's imagine that somehow, it's financially and logistically possible to give Palestine those facilities. What then? What if Hamas, for instance, opposes anything less than the removal of Israel from the map? Would they be stubborn enough in their conviction to deny their people access to these new facilities? Would people who took advantage of these facilities be branded as scabs, traitors, and of abetting the enemy? I imagine they would be.

I recall a story I read on someone's blog (which I'm going to paraphrase horribly) and you could easily substitute the word "Arab" for various different cultures and people.

An Arab man is being given a tour of Hell. He sees enormous bubbling pots filled with screaming people trying desperately to climb out. Demons are posted at the pots to force back the damned with pitchforks. Each pot contains a different race of people, and so when they arrive at the pot filled with Arabs, he notices there is no demon posted there.
"Ah, this must be a show of mercy for a good and suffering people" he says.
"No, it is because we have no need for the demons here... Anytime one of them tries to climb out, the others pull him back down."

Tuesday, March 04, 2008

Geeks Unite In Mourning... A Hero Has Fallen.

Gary Gygax, co-creator of Dungeons and Dragons, passed away today. An inappropriate joke could be made about missing a roll, but none shall be made by me.

An Assessment of a Stutterer.

As a child and a teenager I never knew anyone with a stutter, so it's a unique experience meeting a student who suffers from the intense type of speech impediment normally reserved for low brow comedy. I can't imagine the frustration the young man must feel since it annoys me when I simply can't think of the right word or it's sitting on the tip of my tongue, let alone being unable to get out a word I already have in mind to say.

Of course being in high school, this poor young man may as well paint an enormous red target on his chest, carry around a neon sign, and pay random people to tease him. When the world of movies makes stuttering ever so funny, it's hard for any of his peers to take him seriously.

One amusing thing is his peers' assessments of the situation.

Peer 1: You watch, he gonna kill everybody in this school.

He's rather mild mannered from what I've seen, so that thought seemed silly enough to make me smile... But you never know...

Peer 2: Naw, he gonna own the Playboy mansion and have loads of girls 'round him!

So it could go either way for our poor stutterer... He could end up going psycho on everyone's ass or he could be a millionaire surrounded by ass.

Either way, "ass" will be involved.

Monday, March 03, 2008

Not Too Bright.

I must specify that this exchange was between me and two students who are not identified as having special needs, so I'm not making fun of mentally handicapped kids or anything.

A little background info. A student whose entire life is dedicated to mocking others has begun to interfere with my work as one of his numerous targets is my student who was stabbed by her sister with a fork. Naturally, I'm inclined to protect all children, but ones who are in desperate need of an ally inspire a little more effort in me that others. I told said big mouth student that if he could go a whole week without talking about her, I'd get him a chocolate bar. He said it was a deal.


Big Mouth Kid: Hey TeacherLady, why ain't I got a chocolate yet?

TeacherLady: Because you haven't gone a whole week without talking about my student.

Big Mouth Kid: So why didn't I get one last week?

TeacherLady: Er. Because I caught you talking about her?

Big Mouth Kid's Best Bud: You didn't give him a warning!

What? Isn't the whole damn point of this futile exercise to get him to shut his pie whole about my student?!? Does this require further warnings, explanations, posters, memos, announcements, reminders, diagrams, and jingles?

TeacherLady: He doesn't need warnings, he knows what the deal is.

I walked away. My guess is he's probably in victim mode right now thinking I've backed out of my end of the deal. Too bad he hasn't figured out that he's just a loud mouth jerk.

Yet Another Senseless Killing.

Don't read this story if you're weak of stomach.

A man decapitated his 15 month old nephew to teach the baby's mother a "lesson". What the fuck is wrong with people? I don't care what race/religion/brand of underwear a person is or possesses, HOW ON EARTH does anyone think harming a child is the right action to take? EVER? And when are these psycho vigilante men (Note: not ALL men, just those of the aforementioned psycho vigilante variety) going to get it through their thick skulls that people in glass houses should quit with the freaking rock-throwing? (pun intended as reference to honor killings) The day they're perfect is the day they can dare cast judgment on others, but my guess is their shit smells just as much as anyone's.

Damn that makes me want to puke. I don't care what anyone's excuses are, what state a country is in, or whatever... Irony may lead his judge to show him the same kind of mercy he bestowed on his nephew. Not as a collection of races but as the HUMAN RACE, we need to believe this is a universal truth: That under no circumstances is it justified to intentionally harm or kill a child. Even if they really piss you off. WE are the adults, it's about fucking time we ACT like it.

Give Peas a Chance.

I love food, I love peace. I love Cooking for Peace. Of course this won't bring about peace in the Middle east, but I do love the mushy sentiment behind it. Here is their official website: Chefs for Peace. And then there's Peace Oil ,pictured above. Again, nice idea, even though it doesn't really solve the problem, it's the gesture of peace that brings to mind images of soldiers singing Christmas carols across No Man's Land. It didn't end the war, but it was a pleasant reminder of our humanity.

I'm also reminded of Cafe Reconcile in New Orleans. Their program trains troubled teens in various vocations, including the culinary arts, and is wondrous indeed. As someone who is witness to the most depressing levels of dependence being fostered in today's youth, it is a sight to behold to see anyone helping others to help themselves. And we may get a few sterling future chefs out of the deal too. Lovely!

The breaking of bread, the clinking of wine goblets to ensure no one will be poisoned (the wine splashes from vessel to vessel), the offering of the olive branch... Peace and good food go together like BBQ and corn bread. Heaven.