Everybody’s talkin’

Someday, by God, I want to throw a wedding for that kid.”

“You can either be on the right side of history or the wrong side of history. Your choice. But if you’re on the wrong side, be ready to look like an asshole to your grandchildren, no matter how many savings bonds you give them.”

They pitched a fit and wouldn’t leave until something happened.”

(That’s biblical.)

“That is not legal argument or empirical evidence. It is the death rattle of a movement that has no legal argument or empirical evidence.”

“Son, this is a real question, not like them others. How is it possible for a man to go to church for 50 or even 60 years, and it not make a lick of difference in him? Sit there, year after year – in Sunday school and preachin’, readin’ the Bible, listenin’ to sermons and prayin’ prayers – sit there all that time, all them long years, and be just as mean, as mean as a snake, as the day he started goin’?”

In hell, everyone gets a sweater vest.”

“First of all, talking with my mom about mule sex is a little weird, but that didn’t catch me off guard as much as her ruminations about the soundness of a GOP candidate’s positions on sexuality.”

“Yes, I can understand how one might think that being stopped for directions under a street lamp on the corner of an iconic city isn’t a very big deal, but I think it’s pretty much the coolest thing ever.”

“The care of the public must oversway all private respects, by which, not only conscience, but mere civil policy, doth bind us. For it is a true rule that particular estates cannot subsist in the ruin of the public. … We must not look only on our own things, but also on the things of our brethren.”

“The danger with pretending to be persecuted, misunderstood and all alone is that you might wake up and find that it is true.”

Given the history of forced sterilization in Virginia, you’d think they’d be more sensitive on this issue. This is the state where Buck v Bell brought the issue of forced medical procedures to light.”

The class that they call ‘job creators’ used to have another name. Lords.

The trees are the right height.”

- – - – - – - – - – - -

Let me try to defend Mitt Romney for that one. “I love the state,” Romney said of Michigan, his boyhood home. “It seems right here. Trees are the right height.” He went on and on, unfortunately, babbling about lakes in “the parts of Michigan” and, yes, sounding eerily like Steve Carell in Anchorman when he said “I love cars.”

But that bit about the trees was almost poetry. Keep it in the context of the previous sentence: “It seems right here.” This is the fuzzy territory of memory and place and home that can be so hard to articulate. When you say a place feels like home, what do you mean? You mean a whole host of things, some of which you’ll never find words to express. “The trees are the right height,” is a decent attempt.

I think it was Larry Kramer who, on moving back to New York, said he didn’t like the West Coast because “the ocean was on the wrong side.” I know what he meant, and my guess is it’s the sort of thing Romney meant too.

  • The Lodger

    Dr. Bronner! We’ve missed you!

  • Lunch Meat

    I didn’t get a chance to watch that first video the other day, but I just watched it and it is truly amazing. We need more Republicans like that.

  • http://victor-undergo.blogspot.com/ Victor

     Three is a blessing or is “IT” Strike Three? Let’s try fixing the paragraphs hay sinner vic and imaginary friends from my heart!Should have put “IT” here too sinner vicGo Figure!  I’m speaking from my heart here as a minority and when all of Canada allows “The Blessed Sacrament of marriage” to be alligned with same-sex-marriage and considered legal in all our land because most of our world bishops and cardinals in GOD’s Eyes believe they can no longer do anything about “IT” then “IT” is “Time” to draw the line. When and if “IT” occures, “I” will then give humanity my finger and ware my ring around my neck and then go out into the world and proclaim the Good News that The Sacrament of Marriage was started by GOD (Good Old Dad). He created Adam and Eve and not Adam and Saint Eve or is that spiritual St.Eve who have “Lived” backward and “NOW” joined in marriage by The “Devil” of our days to become Steve….. Anyway…..I’m speaking from my heart here as a minority and when all of Canada allows “The Blessed Sacrament of marriage” to be alligned with same-sex-marriage and considered legal in all our land because most of our world bishops and cardinals in GOD’s Eyes believe they can no longer do anything about “IT” then “IT” is “Time” to draw the line. When and if “IT” occures, “I” will then give humanity my finger and ware my ring around my neck and then go out into the world and proclaim the Good News that The Sacrament of Marriage was started by GOD (Good Old Dad). He created Adam and Eve and not Adam and Saint Eve or is that spiritual St.Eve who have “Lived” backward and “NOW” joined in marriage by The “Devil” of our days to become Steve….. Anyway…..I’m speaking from my heart here as a minority and when all of Canada allows “The Blessed Sacrament of marriage” to be alligned with same-sex-marriage and considered legal in all our land because most of our world bishops and cardinals in GOD’s Eyes believe they can no longer do anything about “IT” then “IT” is “Time” to draw the line. When and if “IT” occures, “I” will then give humanity my finger and ware my ring around my neck and then go out into the world and proclaim the Good News that The Sacrament of Marriage was started by GOD (Good Old Dad). He created Adam and Eve and not Adam and Saint Eve or is that spiritual St.Eve who have “Lived” backward and “NOW” joined in marriage by The “Devil” of our days to become Steve….. Anyway…..I’m speaking from my heart here as a minority and when all of Canada allows “The Blessed Sacrament of marriage” to be alligned with same-sex-marriage and considered legal in all our land because most of our world bishops and cardinals in GOD’s Eyes believe they can no longer do anything about “IT” then “IT” is “Time” to draw the line. When and if “IT” occures, “I” will then give humanity my finger and ware my ring around my neck and then go out into the world and proclaim the Good News that The Sacrament of Marriage was started by GOD (Good Old Dad). He created Adam and Eve and not Adam and Saint Eve or is that spiritual St.Eve who have “Lived” backward and “NOW” joined in marriage by The “Devil” of our days to become Steve….. Anyway….. We got him folks! He’s nothing butt a liar cause he said he would not post anything during “LENT” and what is this?

    As far as going out into the world, he promised all of U>S (usual sinners) that he would not start his new religion until we’ve proved to him that Jesus was just a nice guy and also wait until his wife died.

    Listen People! This Vs is not only a legend in his own mind butt he’s also a crazy transhuministic ignorant fool who thinks that everything is butt a big joke! Does he not know that “The End” has already come and gone and if you don’t believe me just ask “The Alien gods “Left Behind” who own this world NOW!

    Victor, Victor, Victor! Don’t you know that when The U.S. sneezes, The Canadians get a cold and are you not dead already?

    Who said that? :)
    http://www.splendoroftruth.com/curtjester/2012/02/the-best-video-regarding-the-hhs-mandate/http://www.splendoroftruth.com/curtjester/2012/02/the-best-video-regarding-the-hhs-mandate/Sorry Victor didn’t mean to change “IT” on you
    http://www.splendoroftruth.com/curtjester/http://www.splendoroftruth.com/curtjester/“IT” is OK sinner vic!Happy “LENT” :(PeacePiece

  • cyllan

    Yay; Victor’s back. We missed you, V!

  • http://twitter.com/jclor jclor

    “The tree are the right height” just sounds like a chatbot’s attempt at sincerity.

  • http://twitter.com/Rhysdux Rhysdux


    Yes but the idea behind it is, after 50 or 60 years of being present it’s not entirely unreasonable to think that SOMETHING would have got through to effect a change in a person. Yeah, you’re physically present but it seems to me (and to the grandfather in the story) that you’d have to be in a mentally vegetative state every.single.time you walked into the building for 60 years not to have picked up SOMETHING of the whole point of being there (aside from “because it’s what we’ve always done. That’s a different matter).

    But Caffinatedlemur–WHY would attending a church do anything? It’s not like going to church has anything to do with being a decent person. ( I’ll add a caveat here, for there probably are good religious institutions somewhere. I just haven’t had any personal experience with them. ) 

    What I have heard are sermons about:

    1)  “We must shut down the EEEEEEVIL Planned Parenthood clinic” (which, alas, did get shut down many years ago);

    2) “The bishop is doing some renovations, so today there will be a special collection for his building fund, and if any of you don’t want to give money to that, I will proceed to guilt you out right now”;

    3) “This church needs more money, too, and the congregation isn’t being generous enough, so I will yell at all of you for twenty minutes”;

    4) “There’s a controversial bill or referendum coming up soon, so let me tell you how all good Christians–that is, Christians who agree with the church hierarchy–should vote”;

    5) “TV shows displaying sexual situations are sinful and wrong and are probably signs of the end of the world” (This one came up a LOT when Three’s Company was first aired–every church in the vicinity was proclaiming it IN THE PAPERS to be a literal sign of the Apocalypse);

    6) Various interpretations of the Gospel Reading of the day, which are interesting but are all set firmly in a culture two thousand years past and which have nothing to do with actual people nowadays.

    I don’t think that I’ve ever heard anyone in church mention things like mercy or compassion as things that real people were supposed to do rather than as divine qualities possessed by Jesus…which, obviously, no mere human could possess.

    Church isn’t a religious experience. And it sure as hell isn’t about changing people. It’s more about acquiring your change.

    Reading Slacktivist is a more religious experience than going to church. Infinitely more so.  

  • Tricksterson

    Even when I was watching it (whih was much more for janet than Chrissie, also jack was sometimes hilarious) I didn’t get the controversy.  i mean I sometimes wondered if all three of them were asexual.  I mean since they had the cover story of Jack being gay why weren’t at least two, preferably ll of them, humping like bunnies?  he might as well have been.

  • http://lliira.dreamwidth.org/ Lliira

    It sounds like you haven’t been to any good churches, Rhysdux.

    I’m an agnostic-atheist. But I have had some very good experiences in religious buildings.

    1) The liberal Lutheran church I went to as a child. I remember one sermon in which the priest talked about the Golden Rule, and I stared at the beautiful stained glass windows. I can’t remember it very clearly now, but I do remember thinking about it a lot when I was a kid. I tried to live by it.

    2) My grandparents’ church in the Shenandoah Valley. Mennonites, liberal Quakers, liberal Baptists. Unfortunately, the pastor did go off about abortion in one Christmas Eve sermon — all the other ones I’d been to, he talked about the Star in the east and the angels and Jesus being born in a humble manger and yada yada. But his sermons were never very interesting. What was interesting, and a moving, amazing experience: the electric lights would dim. We would light each other’s little candles with the cardboard paper circles around them. Then everyone would sing Christmas carols. 

    3) My friend’s wedding, in which I was a bridesmaid. She’s Catholic, so it was a Catholic wedding. My mother said, “they have incredibly long sermons at Catholic weddings, be ready to be bored out of your mind.” I wasn’t bored at all. The sermon was brilliant, and the philosophy behind it lined up with my own philosophy. The priest was a young, energetic, charismatic man. His sermon was on the Song of Songs, and how the bedrock of marriage was erotic love between equals. Not to produce children — to become closer to each other and the divine through this loving, committed, sexual relationship.

    4) A talk by a monk in a Hindu temple. The art was awesome, and the monk was too. He was infectiously happy. This was a college class on a field trip, so we asked him about women in Hinduism. He said women and men were two sides of the same thing, then he went off on a long and fascinating tangent on the Kama Sutra.

    5) The Riverside Church in New York City on Christmas Eve. This was a political sermon, but it was not the kind of political sermon people normally think of when they think “Christian political sermon.” He started with Paul, and went on from there about how everyone is equal in the eyes of God. And here are some things we can do to try to make God happy, with everyone equal on Earth as they are in heaven, though we should not beat ourselves up over not achieving perfection. Planned Parenthood was mentioned positively.

    I went to another Catholic wedding a few years after the one my friend had. The priest was old and stodgy, the sermon’s content was dull, and I was there as someone’s date so I didn’t even care much about the people getting married. But the church was pretty. And the priest couldn’t pronounce his “r”s. He started the sermon like this: “Mawwiage…” Amazing spiritual experience, no, but I’m glad I was there. 

  • Lunch Meat

    I don’t think that I’ve ever heard anyone in church mention things like mercy or compassion as things that real people were supposed to do rather than as divine qualities possessed by Jesus…which, obviously, no mere human could possess.

    Church isn’t a religious experience. And it sure as hell isn’t about changing people. It’s more about acquiring your change.
    With respect to your personal experiences…I have been to churches that changed people, and that talked about things like mercy, compassion, selflessness, kindness, love, giving (not just to the church but to others) and said “go and do likewise.” Churches aren’t all the same, and if a church isn’t making people better (as I believe its purpose is) then it could be a problem with the church or a problem with the attendee (I would guess a lot of politicians just go to church to be seen, and I can’t imagine it’s changing them very much). I think a church’s goal with someone who doesn’t want to change is to make them so uncomfortable with their lack of changing that they stop coming. (Do you remember Fred’s “Preached down to four”? I can try to find a link to it if you don’t remember/weren’t around when it was published.)

  • http://lliira.dreamwidth.org/ Lliira

    Janet and Jack eventually were humping like bunnies, weren’t they? They were in my headcanon at least.

  • http://apocalypsereview.wordpress.com/ Invisible Neutrino

    I went to another Catholic wedding a few years after the one my friend had. The priest was old and stodgy, the sermon’s content was dull, and I was there as someone’s date so I didn’t even care much about the people getting married. But the church was pretty. And the priest couldn’t pronounce his “r”s. He started the sermon like this: “Mawwiage…” Amazing spiritual experience, no, but I’m glad I was there.

    Suddenly, Elmer Fudd. :P

  • P J Evans

    I bet Mitt thinks redwoods are improperly tall….

  • http://apocalypsereview.wordpress.com/ Invisible Neutrino

    But are they fractions of a tree? ;)

  • P J Evans

    I can’t smell cow crap or dead grass in the fall

    I get something of that from the smell of an oilfield – it’s one of the earliest ones I remember: we had to go through one to get to the house of a relative.

  • P J Evans

     Probably improper ones, given they’re kind of large. But it only takes about three of them for you to feel like it’s a grove.

  • Brandi

    IN: Probably more like the Impressive Clergyman.

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=DF9O6fne6nE

  • Tricksterson

    So the people getting married at that second one were Buttercup and Prince Humperdinck?

    For myself I have gotten spiritually high at religious ceremonies but never Christian ones.  Not saying you can’t get such a feeling from Christian rituals but I don’t, they bore the hell out of me.  The biggest such feeling I got was when some friends and i pulled an all night road trip just wanderig around and wound up at the seashore with the waves crashing on the rocks and the sun coming up.

  • Rikalous

     

    I bet Mitt thinks redwoods are improperly tall….

    Not the first thing he’s been wrong about. Speaking of spiritual highs, there ain’t nothing quite like walking through a redwood forest.

  • http://twitter.com/Rhysdux Rhysdux


    It sounds like you haven’t been to any good churches, Rhysdux.

    No, Lliira, I really haven’t. In the past, when I was still trying to catch religion like you’d catch a cold, I shopped around to various church services.  None of the places seemed to have anything to do with making people better. (Though I do get what you mean about looking at gorgeous stained-glass windows. I used to do that a lot. And singing Christmas carols is fun anytime.) In fact, a lot felt empty–even though the congregation was sizable.

    The example that makes me boggle the most is that of the monk. I can’t imagine being infectiously happy in church. 

  • http://twitter.com/Rhysdux Rhysdux

    I have been to churches that changed people, and that talked about things like mercy, compassion, selflessness, kindness, love, giving (not just to the church but to others) and said “go and do likewise.”

    Well, Lunch Meat, I DID say that there probably were good churches out there somewhere–just that I hadn’t run into any of them. I am glad that there are some out there that are actually doing their job.

    I think a church’s goal with someone who doesn’t want to change is to make them so uncomfortable with their lack of changing that they stop coming. 

    *confused frown * I thought that a church was supposed to be like a spiritual hospital.  If you drive the sick people away from the hospital by making them uncomfortable, how does that make the sick people better?

    I’m pretty new to Slacktivist, so no, I don’t remember Fred’s “Preached down to four.” I’d appreciate the link, though.

  • Jam

    My dad who has been a full-blown agnostic, if not an actual atheist, thought that attending church on a regular basis should make a difference in a person’s moral actions.  He was always amazed when they acted in immoral ways—including but not limited to bigotry, greed, and failing to pay their bills to local tradesmen.  Oddly, he never seemed to put sexual affairs that is, consenting adult with other consenting adult, in the same category of immoral behavior

  • Lunch Meat

    Sorry. I didn’t mean to imply you were saying that there aren’t any good churches. I just wanted to give examples.

    Here’s “Preached down to four”: http://www.patheos.com/blogs/slacktivist/2010/10/16/preached-down-to-four/ 

    I thought that a church was supposed to be like a spiritual hospital.  If you drive the sick people away from the hospital by making them uncomfortable, how does that make the sick people better?

    I’m making a distinction between people who want to change and people that don’t.  (And I’m explicitly talking about only Christian churches because I don’t have much experience with other religions and what their meetings/services try to accomplish.) I think if generic-you can hear a sermon every week about the kind of person Jesus was–loving, sacrificial, accepting, etc–and how you should try to be the same, and you’re still a selfish, bigoted person and don’t feel any desire to change, then there’s probably something wrong with the sermon, but it’s also possible that you’re just not there to be changed. And I don’t think generic-you should feel comfortable returning to a church week after week to hear the same story and feel no desire to become a better person. If there wasn’t a social benefit from going to church, then I think more people would be going to church so that it would make them better people.

    Or to make the point another way, a hospital is for people who want to get better. A hospital should be effectively treating their patients. But if a patient sees hirself as just fine and don’t want to get better, then zie should stop accepting the treatment and leave to make room for people who want to get better. A hospital’s treatments shouldn’t be so innocuous and unproductive that you don’t mind enduring them even while resisting efforts to get better. (I don’t mean this metaphor to say that anyone who is not a Christian is sick. But if you are a Christian, I think that you should want to be one, and that you should feel that you are better as a Christian. Maybe? I don’t know if I’m comfortable with this metaphor. I’m going to put it out there to try to explain myself better, but I welcome corrections, especially if I’ve stepped on someone’s toes.)

  • P J Evans

    I wish I was less than three hundred miles from the nearest redwood forest…. There are redwoods around here as part of landscaping. I don’t think they’re happy trees (there isn’t enough fog, for one thing), but at least they’re around.
    The eucalypts, on the other hand, seem to be very happy. (I drove past some last weekend and I could smell them from a few hundred feet away. Not strongly, unfortunately, or my sinuses would have cleared.)


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