18 March 2005

Beer and...

Phile and I were celebrating the feast of St. Patrick the other day and the topic of what goes with beer arose. Eating ice cream, I suggested ice cream would be a fine compliment to a glass of pilsner. The thought crossed my mind that beer flavored ice cream would bring men and women together as no other food has done before. Phil then proffered an earnest proverb: Beer is good with ice cream but beer with beer is better. An astute observation methinks.

17 March 2005

On St. Patrick's Feast

I get to celbrate St. Patrick's feast twice. Yep, I celebrated last night and this evening I will be going to Gethsemane Cathedral's St. Patrick's Day feast. Hopefully Phil will have more quotable moments.

Last nights festivities included in addition to food and stout, trivia, music, and a movie. I was the music. I still am not very good at playing those Irish ditties. I need to practice more.
Our Irish film for the evening was Angela's Ashes. It was based on the Frank McCourt book of the same title. I never read the book but had read a synopsis summary of it once. Actually I almost bought it at the second hand store once.
Anyways the book being a memoir of sorts, the movie is rather episodic. One event after another that shapes Frank. Quite an eery look at poverty in Ireland in the days leading up to WWII. You just hope the family can escape it. Eventually he gets the money (somewhat dubiously) and returns to the United States. And by the way there is nudity and sex.
Here are a few observations I made on the film:

  • Classism existed. I knew there were Protestant/Catholic tensions but the classism I did not anticipate. Even amongst the Catholics and those who should be showing mercy there was a discrimination. Also there were prejudices between those from the North and South.
  • Catholicism a coping mechanism and not necessarily a living faith. Seemed that adherance to Catholicism helped people to cope with their lives. God, the Sacred Heart, baby Jesus- they were turned to only in bad circumstances. I applaud the Irish desire to honor God but it seemed like a faith of convenience. Frank would go to confession but later would continue in the same habits. He was conscietious but not fully devoted which paralleled his father.
  • The state of the family in Ireland was miserable. Frank's father was pitiful but you just wish he'd take some responsibility. He was a victim of discrimination and it affected his role as a father. He probably felt worthless and thus drank away his sorrows and abandoned the family.
  • Limerick is wet. It think it raining about half the movie. It made the slums look drizzrable (new word meaning raining and miserable).

Well, have a happy St. Patrick's Day. Ireland forever!

Phil the awesome

I have friend in town. He a fairly laid back guy and the kind of guy able to sneak through airport security with toenail clippers kind of sly. If he had not gotten married I'd suspect he form a vigilante anti-terrorist brigade that's only purpose was to sit around and drink beer (not the domestic junk) and discuss means they could use to track down Osama's minions.
He bought a whole gross of nutrition bars recently (and gross can describe them: think soft cardboard with flour, wheat germ and chocolate) that I had interest in obtaining a few from him.
He brings some over to my place and to my chagrin the were of the female specific type. I was bit dismayed and did not want people to think I am becoming woman.
Phil responded with one of his trademark bits of wisdom: "Nutrition knows no gender."
I have not eaten any of the bars yet so we will see if this is true.

06 March 2005

The dangers of blog: a thin line of dissent

So you can actully lose your job because you blog. In the case of 2 individuals, their blogs cost them their jobs. Read about it here.
This begs the question what is protected speech now. Obviously their blogs must of violated company policy in the sense that as individuals they represent the company to the public. Additionally, speech is not necessarily protected in the sphere of the private world (only in relation to incidences of discrimination, whistleblowing, or in union organizing. Ones are employed at will as I recall from my professional ethics class and thus the private corpus (body) can do what it wants. I am not sure many even realize employers have this "right."
Now then what can one blog without violating the company line?
Here are my suggestions:
  1. Movies. As long you don't work for Miramax or Paramount I am sure the discussion of movie culture can be discussed and dissented with freely. (i.e. I dispised Al Pacino's role in Meet the Fokkers.) Look now one's going to fire me.
  2. Hobbies. As long as your hobby is not illegal- although I have seen a few blogs that ride that line, but I digress. I have frequently written about biking, I think I have, and soccer.
  3. Family. This of course could possibly be easy to do as long as you don't libel them in the process. Some family life is pretty interesting. However, telling about how junior had become potty trained may cross descency lines.
  4. Spirituality. I believe we can freely discuss spiritual issues. The first amendment protects the government from preventing the free exercise of religion I think. So, write all you want about the Almighty One or that idol you bow down to or what you do not intend to believe because you don't believe in anything spiritual. Can private organizations limit the free practice of religion? Hmmm. I would say that it may violate privacy issues. However, "religious speech" could possibly be limited by private companies. I believe it is unfair but I do not know of any protection for it. Looks like we are just protected from the government, those old dogs.

03 March 2005

Re:Footballer on Christ

Been doing a bit of research for (re) developing some web endeavors that have fallen aside in the last year and came across this UK site. It feature an interview with Gavin Peacock, former Chelsea and Newcastle star. He speaks about his success and matters of faith. The website itself is rather well done and accessible yet utilizes Macromedia (but for good effect). Be sure to check out the steps of faith page.