Sunday, February 25, 2007

Acts of Kindness

Busy day yesterday and things did not quite work out as I had planned. Isn't that how it usually goes?

I started the morning with my son's play-off basketball game. It did not go well. His team was keeping even with the other team, but the refs seemed to be playing for the other team. No fouls, even blatent fouls, by the other team were called. One of our coaches got yelled at by the other league's coordinator and one of our spectators was told to leave the gym. Testosterone was flowing in full force, but all calmed down. We lost, but our boys felt they had played well and they had played honestly.

After the game, I had told my son that before his friends could come over, I needed to do some errands. I dropped him off at the house quick so I could make one stop. As I was coming back, I saw one of his friends going into the house. That's not allowed for starters - having friends over when I'm not home. As soon as I got inside, he had arranged for another friend to come over. "But, Mom, I didn't know that's what you said that I had to wait until later..."

My daughter then arrived home and was able to watch the boys for me. My house is usually full of 11-year old boys on the weekends. I generally don't mind since I work too many hours during the week to host them here then. I ran out to start my errands. Shortly there after I got a phone call from home saying I needed to come back home. My son had a 3-inch splinter in his hand. I thought my daughter was exaggerating, but no, it was a 3" splinter - biggest splinter I had ever seen. I should have taken a picture of it. I could not get it out and I knew even if I got part of it out, that part would still be left in his hand.

Act of Kindness:
I called my doctor but he was not on call. He had a referring doctor covering his calls. I was picturing about 5 hours sitting in the ER waiting to be seen. But, this doctor opened her office for me to bring him in. She was so nice and helpful. My son was worried about how they were going to take this chunk of wood out of his hand, but she made it very easy for him. Still took about 3 hours, all said and done, since I had to take his friends home and drive 30 minutes to her office.

Act of Kindness:
After he got home, he went off to show his war wound to his friends. I went outside to try and chip ice off one of my sidewalks. I was not making much headway when my neighbor came out and offered me the use of an ice chipper. I had been using a flat metal shovel. His tool made things much easier even though I did not get it all off. I did make a path at least for people to get through. I have blisters on my hands though!

Act of Kindness:
I've been exchanging emails with two fellow Who fan/bloggers about the SXSW festival. One who lives in Austin has offered Colleen and I so much hospitality and advance information, it is overwhelming! Both have gone out of their way to give us inside information and to help us prepare for what is going to be an awesome time in Austin. We are so looking forward to it. Susan has offered us help with parking, to show us the city and to introduce us to some historical music figures in Austin. The best way to see a city is with someone who lives there! We have never met and she has gone out of her way to help us out.

It's snowing again. I was out on the deck with my dog Britney watching the heavy snow thinking about all the acts of kindness I've seen or been part of in the last few days. Bloggers holding vigil for Hotel Cafe tickets even if there was no chance of their attendance - they were looking out for each other. Neighbors helping each other. A sister looking out for her younger brother, comforting him and calming him and his friends down. A doctor opening her office on a beautiful Saturday afternoon so I didn't have to go to an emergency room. Coaches who spend their free time teaching young boys and girls the art of sportsmenship. My son who went out willingly and tried to shovel some of the ice off the sidewalk. Too many more to talk about here. We all make a difference in each other's lives.

Friday, February 23, 2007

Joe's Pub, Show #3

The third time is the charm! What an awesome show, totally amazing, as so many of the other bloggers have said. Their postings on Rachel's blog or on their own sites are far more eloquent than I can be. Found two new artists to add to my ipod collection - Rachael Yamagata and Amos Lee. That's one of the best things about the Attic shows. I always hear an artist that I might not have found otherwise. Even if I was familiar with the name, I may not have heard their music.

Again, it was a very intimate show. This time I didn't have a front-row table, but I stood in the back by the door. I had a perfect view of the entire stage and a counter to lean against and put my drink on. It was also not as crowded in that section so we had room to move around. One benefit of not being at a table! At the tables, you really had no room to move your chair and have any space.

I didn't recognize many celebrities in the table section, but I heard Matt Dillon was there. I wasn't spending much time looking for celebs though, was more interested in the music. Jimmy Fallon was great and I understand he went on Conan this week and talked about the show. Would have liked to hear that clip. There was someone behind me that must have been from the music industry. People kept coming up to him asking him if he was ok and if he was enjoying the show.

Pete played some classics and his partnering with Lou Reed and J Mascis was fantastic.

Off to the SXSW festival in March. I am really looking forward to that and hopefully the Austin Attic show!

Thursday, February 22, 2007

Bob From Sesame Street!

Went to NYC for the weekend. On Monday, I went to the Barnes & Noble store in Lincoln Center where Melissa Riggio, Rachel Fuller and Bob from Sesame Street did a show to highlight Down's Syndrome. I forgot how much I loved Bob from Sesame Street!

The show went really well. Melissa was nervous at first - who wouldn't be? All those people staring at you and a microphone stuck in your face. I remember the first time I had to talk to a crowd of over 100 people. Public speaking had never been much of an issue, but I stood in front of about 600 people and I totally went blank and my opening didn't go as smoothly as I had planned. It happened once again when the group was about the size of about 130 people.

When she was with Rachel, though, singing, she began to relax and I hear when she did the TV interviews, she was very eloquent.

After the event, it was great having lunch with Jon, Lisa, Lin, Colleen and Bryan. We were all heading to Joe's the next day. And, everyone was psyched because they had the opportunity to speak with Pete and have their photos taken with him. Despite having some woman hand him a pile of albums to sign, Pete was in a relatively good mood and very gracious to the bloggers.

Thursday, February 15, 2007

Wild Winter

We got snow Tuesday night into Wednesday, followed by sleet and then more snow. Couldn't make it into the office Wednesday so worked from home. Thursday, I also worked from home. I usually work from home on Fridays so it will be three days at home. School was cancelled Wed & Thurs. as well. Friday and Monday are holidays, so the kids are enjoying a 6-day weekend.

Spent way too much time shoveling, but the kids are really enjoying it. The neighborhood boys have been in and out, spending many hours outside sledding down the hills in our neighborhood. They don't mind the bitter cold or the blowing snow. They are having the time of their lives.

I leave Saturday to go up to New York. I'm going to visit my aunt, uncle and cousin on Long Island for a few hours. Then I'll leave my car at their house and take the train into the city. An old friend of mine is in town for work so I'll spend a few days getting reacquainted. Monday is Rachel's event at Barnes & Noble. My cousin works there so I'll see her there. Tuesday, she and I are going to the Attic show at Joe's Pub. We'll meet up with ColleenM and have dinner before the show. I'll head home sometime on Wednesday.

Sorry to say that three, and hopefully all the mice, have met their end. Gave up on the Havahart trap and used the old-fashioned spring loaded traps. My son was not happy but he accepted it.

Hope everyone is surviving the cold and staying warm.

Sunday, February 11, 2007

Mouse in the House

At least I am hoping it is a mouse - could be several mice, could be a rat or some other type of rodent. I haven't seen it, but we've heard it and we've seen the droppings. We used to have a cat so I've never had to deal with a mouse in the house before. Our cat, Freddie, developed diabetes and while I tried very hard to keep her healthy with the condition, I could not keep her blood sugar levels stable. She was a very brittle diabetic. I used to have to test her blood several times a day, give her insulin shots and she still seemed to be in pain or sick. So we finally put her down. The dog does not seem to know there is a mouse in the house.

My daughter is terrified of the mouse - she is rather dramatic about most things and this is no exception. My son has thrown my own teachings back into my face. But, Mom, you said that we should treat all living creatures with kindness and respect. You can't kill the mouse. We have to catch it and let it free outside.

We went to the hardware store and instead of spending $2 for a simple but deadly mouse trap. I spent over $20 for a HavAHart trap. So far, however, the mouse is winning. He or she has taken the bait and not been caught in the trap. I'm using peanut butter. And the trap seems very sensitive to me, but apparently not to the mouse.

Friday, February 09, 2007

Is this world everything God created it to be?

Sometimes we don't know the effect we have in the world or on other people. Small or big acts have consequences and can change the world for the better or for the worse.

Thursday, February 08, 2007

Bee's Knees

This month's edition of Discover magazine had a page devoted to 20 Things You Didn't Know About Bees:

When the drones mate with the Queen, they die afterwards from a ruptured abdomen. Their endophallus becomes detached and gets stuck inside the queen. She, however, continues to mate until she collects more than 70 million sperm from multiple males.

Australian researchers discovered that honeybees can distinguish between human faces and Los Alamos scientists have trained bees to recognize explosives.

In April, 1984, 3,300 bees were sent into space on the Challenger space shuttle. They built a near perfect hive in zero gravity, but did not go to the bathroom for seven days. Bees will not go inside their hive and since they could not get out of their holding box, they held it for a week.

American cartoonist, Tad Dorgan, came up with the expression, "bee's knees", "the cat's pajamas", "the flea's eyebrows", "the canary's tusks" and "Yes, we have no bananas."

Tuesday, February 06, 2007


This is a sampler from the first Joe's Pub show in Sept 2006. I am heading back to Joe's for show #3 in two weeks. I can't wait. Rock the Fuck On!

Monday, February 05, 2007

My Blog is Turning Political

I've always had strong political views, but this blog was not intended to be a podium for those. I started this blog to be able to post on Rachel's original blog rather than just be a 'lurker'. She's moved sites a few times. And, I've traveled the country to see her Attic shows. I've downloaded her podcasts and I'm planning on buying not only more of her music, but those of the artists that she's had on her shows - artists that I probably wouldn't have explored since I tended to listen primarily to classic rock and/or the rap that my daughter and son prefer.

My first post says I probably won't put much out on the blog. But, then I started posting my Fuller/Who travels. But there was a long hiatus between shows. Instead, to fill my blog airspace, I've started voicing my political and sometimes slightly philosophical, maybe sophomoric viewpoints.

Good thing that Rachel, Pete and the rest of the Attic gang will be coming to Joe's Pub in just 15 days! I have another concert to go to before that, but I'm looking forward to NYC. The month after that, I'm headed to SXSW for four days of music, with of course, another Attic show.

Thursday, February 01, 2007

Cheney's Daughter

Is it out of line to ask Dick Cheney what he thinks of conservatives who are outspoken against gay marriage and believe his daughter's choice to have a child while in a gay relationship is sinful and morally wrong? I don't think so. His administration has not hesitated to use other people's children in their arguments against stem cell research and even gay marriage.

My religious denomination, the United Church of Christ, has voted to endorse gay marriage, to be a welcoming and inclusive church. Because of this decision, we have lost some congregations and we have gained others. The Episcopal church in America is facing the same divisive struggle. It baffles me that people can use God's word (regardless of what God you believe in) to hurt others when almost every world religion I know has love and acceptance at its basic core.

Christians who preach against homosexuality often quote Leviticus as their reason for knowing that God condemns homosexuality. Leviticus was written as a way to illustrate to the Jews that they were a separate people, a chosen people, and to stay separate and pure, they needed to follow specific rules about the Sabbath, their diet, and circumcision. Those who quote Leviticus often pick out the sections of the book that they believe to be absolute and true. They quote Leviticus 18:22 and 20:13

"You shall not lie with a male as with a woman; it is an abomination."


"If a man lies with a male as with a woman, both of them have committed an abomination; they shall be put to death; their blood be upon them."

(Note: the Bible says little, if anything, about lesbianism. Does that mean only homosexual males are to be condemned?)

What about Leviticus 19:19?
"Do not mate different kinds of animals. Do not plant your fields with two kinds of seed. Do not wear clothing woven of two kinds of material."

or Leviticus 19:26?
"Do not eat any meat with the blood still in it."

or Leviticus 19:27?
"Do not cut the hair at the sides of your head or clip off the edges of your beard."

or Leviticus 19:33-34?
"When an alien lives with you in your land, do not mistreat him. The alien living with you must be treated as one of your native-born. Love him as yourself, for you were aliens in Egypt. I am the Lord your God."

If we still practiced Leviticus 20:9, there wouldn't be too many of us who make it through childhood:

"If anyone curses their father or mother, he must be put to death. He has cursed his father or his mother and his blood will be on his own head."

The story of Sodom and Gomorrah is often quoted as well. From what I understand of that time period, travelers needed to gain protection from a citizen of a city to be safe during their travels. If they were not given hospitality and protection by a citizen, they were often raped by the townsmen. Once Lot offers his hospitality to the two strangers (angels), he is honor-bound to protect them. Instead he offers his virgin daughters to the mob - women at that time were considered to be property of their fathers or husbands. Not satisfied with Lot's offer of his daughters, the mob breaks into the house to get the visitors. The angels protect the family by blinding the men of the city. How does an angry mob of rapists compare to a loving homosexual relationship?

The writings of Paul are also used to condemn homosexuality. I often feel that Paul was a tortured unhappy man - like many of the fundamentalists that focus on sin and following specific rules for gaining salvation. Paul implies that homosexuality is a punishment for not following God's rules closely enough, for not worshipping correctly.

Why do we hurt each other so willingly when the basic commandment of most world religions is

"Do onto others as you would have done to you" ?