Only Nine Hundred and Ninety-Four Shopping Years until the next Millennium

A few links to festivities and the last photos of 2005.

*George Thomas Clark presents: John Wayne Reviews Brokeback Mountain. Child safe version at Editor and Publisher.

Inspired by my own post on this movie, or I should say the comments, Ralph has found a replacement for ‘You Rock!’. Henceforth to be used by all the really cool kids.

On to 2006 and future hope:

Lou Joseph does the New Year around the world, summed up by Sheila Lennon.

A wonderous post on unbecoming from Ethan: I want to unbecome a person who does not live his dreams.

A man who is following his dreams is Rob, who wrote: And I would walk 500.05 miles and I would walk 500.05 more just to be the man who walked a thousand point one miles to fall down at your door!

His goal for 2006: 1200 miles.

Ken is dancing the night away with black tie and tux, Maria shows us her footware, as the California storms rage round her, and Phil Pearson snaps sunrise, 2006 in New Zealand.

Have a Happy. Have a Safe. Have a Cookie!

*I had considered posting a link to the Huffington Post version of George Clark’s review, but the comments were more than I could take. Instead, I’ll just repeat what I wrote in my own comments, in response to those who seem to have problems with gay love:

As for displays, I’ve found that watching genuine affection between people regardless of their gender to be uplifting. It’s rare nowadays to see such love and care. One of the most loving men I know is gay and Episcopalian, with a strong true faith, love of gardening, his old dog, his church, and his partner of many years.

I’d rather watch men kissing than killing each other. It amazes me that we’ve made it to 2006 and still celebrate the latter while condemning the former.


My digitalized tunes

Recovered from the Wayback Machine.

I’m still importing my music CDs into my iTunes. I am now up to 1358 songs, and currently importing the Beatles White Album.

Handling CDs over an extended period, I’ve noticed how the CD packaging and CDs, themselves, have changed over time. Some of my older CDs, such as White Album, have thick, heavy plastic cases; the newer ones are thin, light, or even made of paper. The older CDs are thicker, and seem more durable; the newer are so thin they seem to be made of dragonfly wings.

I can’t remember buying my first CD player, or my first CD. According to this page at Philips, the first CD pressings for commercial sale happened in August of 1982. By the following January, half a million CDs had been sold.

1982. That was one year later than when DOS was invented, and one year before the release of Apple’s Lisa personal computer. That was 23, almost 24 years ago–older than some of you reading this. This means that many of you have never played a record in a record player; or tapes that used to get hung up in the cassette players, and turn into the same curly mess as our afros.

My ex-husband and I had a CD player our second Christmas together, I remember that. Or was it a cassette player? It was one or the other, I remember that. What I can’t remember is the year we got married. For the life of me, I can’t remember when we got married. Was in 1983? I can remember the stereo (it could play albums, still, so it must have been a cassette player); the place we lived (an apartment, with an artificial stream that attracted ducks in the winter); the city (Phoenix); even what I wore Christmas day (a light pink satin nighty with a darker rose satin robe with delicate lace down the front).

We had adopted a pregnant cat who had given birth to three kittens about 2 months before. I can remember them tearing at the Christmas tree and sleeping as a bundle on my lap. I had a perm, and my hair was a thick mass of curls.

I can remember the year we divorced: 2002, in Boston. (Actually it was in 2001: the year the dot-com I worked at closed, started my first weblog, took my one and only trip to London, and then moved to San Francisco because it seemed like a cool place to live.) We still lived together; something the judge commented on–perplexed at our friendliness after session after session of couples loathing one another. When we moved apart, I can remember splitting up the CD collection: his and hers. But I can’t remember the year we were married, or the first CD we bought. It’s in the pile I’m digitalizing right now. Somewhere.


Mad woman with an ERV

I, finally, heard from the Red Cross after the initial meeting where we all were warned we’d be called within a few weeks. That was, of course, months ago, but time is relative.

I received a letter telling me I had to submit for a national background check, as well as sign up for various classes. These are required if I want to continue being part of Disaster Services, and thus eligible to help at national emergencies. With the letter came a page listing the different volunteer classifications and the classes needed for each.

I’m interested in being part of a Disaster Action Team, the Communication and Equipment team, and Shelter Worker. As such I need to take several classes over the next four months: classes such as an all day simulation for shelter management, liason training, and operating the communication equipment.

I also get training in how to drive in adverse situations; in particular how to drive the vehicles that the Red Cross provides their volunteers. Yes, driving through mud and water on rough or non-existent roads in an vehicle very similar to a Humvee. This is in addition to training in how to drive the Red Cross ERV or Emergency Response Vehicle.

I’m conflicted. There will be a disaster in the future and I will be sent to help. I’ll be thinking to myself, as I tool along, driving the ERV, “Oh, this is such a tragedy”. But my deep, inner child will be going “Wheeeeeeee!”

I am a b-a-a-a-d woman.


Reminders of faith

The saga of St. Stanislaus continues. Archbishop Burke warned that though those who attended Christmas mass at the church would not be excommunicated, they would be guilty of mortal sin. The response? Over 2000 of the faithful from the entire area showed up to provide support for the embattled Priest and parish board.

The next day, during the more intimate Christmas Day service that the priest, Rev. Marek Bozek said this was not his first difficulty with the church. While he was a seminary student in Poland, he was accused of being a ‘promiscuous homosexual’:

Bozek told his new parishioners the story of his struggle five years ago at a seminary in Poland with an accusation made against him – “a witch hunt” he called it. “Some people accused me of being a promiscuous homosexual,” he said. He told the rector of the seminary to provide proof, and said the rector couldn’t, but persisted in the accusations.

Bozek said he went to his Warmia Archbishop Edmund Michal Piszcz, and told him to call off the rector. He threatened to sue the archdiocese. “They have no proof,” he told Piszcz. Bozek said Piszcz agreed. Nevertheless the priest left the seminary and Poland, landing in Springfield, Mo.

When asked if he is a homosexual:

“When people ask me that, I just say, I am a celibate and chaste priest, so it doesn’t matter,” Bozek said.

In one church in a small parish in a northwest suburb of St. Louis, the Catholic church and it’s moves to return to a more primitive and repressive time, are being challenged. I’m not Catholic, or Polish, but it makes me proud to be in St. Louis.

Programming Languages

More new toys

I still love Locomotive, but I haven’t forgotten my PHP, or my first love, RDF. (Note to self: get out more).

Anyway, I spotted the following at the RAP (RDF API for PHP) site:

RAP 0.93 will be released in January 2006 and will include support for the SPARQL query language and the SPARQL protocol.

I’ve been waiting for this to implement more evil plans. Oh rapturous joy! Oh sublime happiness!

I am dancing a jig. Do you see me?

*dance* *dance*

Happy face.


(I danced on Zoë’s tail…)