Tuesday, October 30, 2007

The Tao of Oreo

So apparently Kraft Foods did a study in 2004. In it they asked 2,000 people across America how they like to eat their Oreos. Then they did personality screenings. They found some fun results.

If you're a dunker you are energetic, adventurous and extremely social.

If you bite(nibbles or popping it whole into your mouth) you are easy-going, self-confident and optimistic.

If you're a twister you are sensitive, emotional, artistic and trendy.

Interestingly, they found that primarily women are dunkers, men are biters, Republicans dunk and Democrats twist.

Me, myself, I am a combination, as I think most people are. I drown mine(youknow, hold it under until there are no more bubbles) then I pop it in whole. If you do it just right, you still get the satisfying crunch of a bite, but it doesn't cut your mouth to shreds.

I guess I should have known that all the answers would lay in a chocolate sandwich cookie.

Promote world peace! Eat your Oreos!

Now if you'll excuse me, I have to run to the store. I feel a sudden craving for a certain cookie.......

Saturday, October 20, 2007

On the surface....

The question posed here is a deceptively simple one: Does appearance matter?

I contend that it does. How you choose to present yourself makes an enormous impact on how the world chooses to respond to you. How you dress, how you speak, if you’re clean and well-groomed, if your clothes are in good repair and well-fitting, all of these things are factors in how the world perceives you and, thereby, what it’s willing to grant you in terms of its rewards. Is it a complete picture of your deepest, truest self? No! But I’m not talking about that. I’m talking about making a surface judgment, based on surface elements. As long as you’re aware that it’s a surface judgment, and that there is something to discover beyond the surface, I fail to see the injustice. We have an outside surface that we present to everyone we meet. We have to start somewhere and, lacking telepathy, this is our best option.

There are those who say that to judge another solely by their appearance is a closed-minded bigotry. I would agree with that statement, and would venture to say that this is not what I am proposing to do. I am proposing that it’s not entirely outside the realm of reason to think that a person’s external state may offer some insight into his internal one.

An example was proffered that in a certain professional setting a kind of uniformity of dress was required to maintain employment. There was a great deal of unhappiness engendered by this mandate, owing to a feeling of being dictated to on a matter that is considered very personal. It was stated that I could not have gotten to know a person simply by looking at their uniform. I acknowledge this is truth. In a professional setting, however, you are representing something bigger than yourself, and it is accepted and, indeed, expected that your personality would be somewhat subjugated to that larger entity. In this case, it is not the goal to get to know a person deeply and meaningfully. It can often be a pleasant side-effect from working closely with a person for a long period of time, but it isn’t the primary goal, nor would it be appropriate for it to be such.

This is my point: Your appearance is a reflection of who are. Not a 3-D sculpture in full color, by any means, but a reflection, nonetheless. If it wasn’t, the professional wouldn’t be distressed in any way at the thought of maintaining an externally imposed dress standard. But instead, it feels like a violation, because it removes that surface indication of individual personality.

Appearance matters!


These questions were posed in class, “Are we really free? Do we really have freedom of speech in this country? Is there censorship?”

Well, these are big questions, and rather interrelated, of course. My simple answer to all three of them is, yes.

We are free; at least by my definition of free. Meaning,we have the freedom to choose how to live our lives. If you decide to give up a lucrative career and go be a squid fisherman in Borneo, you are free to do so. No one will stop you.

You are free to choose anything. You just have to be aware that choices have consequences. If you’re going to define freedom as a complete lack of consequences, then no, you are not now, nor will you ever be, free. I see this problem in a lot of people. They seem to feel that just because they want something, that should be reason enough to get it, but they're seldom willing to make the sacrifices necessary to make it happen. Nor are they willing to take responsibility for the consequences. That's my biggest problem. People are so quick to demand their freedoms; their right to choose. But they are even more quick to abdicate their responsibilty for the consequence of the choice. They always want someone else to pay for it. That's not freedom. That's slavery.

As to the second question, this country has the freest speech you’re ever going to find. I would like to note, however, that what our forefathers intended by that amendment was the right to criticize the government. Not the right to be publicly offensive with impunity. When the Dixie Chicks had their little bout with public reactions, they were shocked and appalled that people responded so negatively. I think they were stupid not to see it coming! They viewed their actions as patriotic(which makes me question, not only their intellect, but their sanity). They had every right, under the Constitution, to say what they did, and if they had been in the States when they did it, the reaction would likely not have been as intense. But when you go to a foreign country and denigrate yours, you’ve crossed a line. I don’t feel sorry for them. Not even a little. You said what you had to say, and now you can deal with the consequences. I will never buy one of their albums. And I change the station if one of their songs comes on. That’s one of the consequences. They lose my patronage. That’s the thing most people seem unwilling to accept. You have the right to say whatever you want. You do not, however, have the right to an audience, let alone a warm and accepting one.

Question three: Is there censorship in America? Yes. And I’m glad. What the critics call censorship, I call discretion, and I’m deeply appreciative for the meager amounts that are currently circulating in our society. This criticism is usually lobbed by those who think Europe has the market cornered on “the way to live and be happy”. I do not wish to become as seemingly “enlightened” as our Western European friends. Pardon me, but didn’t we fight that whole Revolutionary War thing, so that we WOULDN’T become like them?! Further, has anyone else noticed that when Europeans say enlightened, what they are invariably talking about is sex? When, oh when, did sex become the pinnacle and beacon of all learning and knowledge?! I’m noticing this attitude seeping to our society with alarming thoroughness. People seem to feel that if we are not open to, actively engaged in and discussing sex of every kind that we are somehow lacking. We are hypocrites. NEWS FLASH: The fact that you engage in a behavior, does not automatically render it appropriate for public discussion!

On a side note, I find it to be an interesting juxtaposition that in France they will talk about sex at the drop of a hat, but it is considered beyond uncouth to discuss money in any form. No wonder they hate us! We are their antithesis!

So, to recap: Yes. We are really free. Free to choose, but not free to escape the consequences of our choice. Yes, we have freedom of speech. You can say whatever you like, but you're not guaranteed an audience or acceptance of what you have to say. Yes, we have censorship, and it's a good thing. It's true name is discretion. Not all information NEEDS to be out there.

The Myth of Multi-Culturalism

I hate diversity. Don’t get me wrong. I understand its value, when used properly. But no one uses it properly anymore! It has been, like so many other good concepts, turned and twisted and mutated into something wholly wrong and undesirable by any sane, thinking person.

What do the proponents of diversity for its own sake hope to accomplish?

People are different from each other. I get that. I do. And I think most people are good, and when they strive for diversity, they are attempting to make people appreciate, rather than fear, those differences. But they’re missing some rather vital aspects, and have incorrectly defined the role diversity should play in the grand scheme of things.

First of all, they’re not taking into account human nature, and working within those parameters. We tend to be selfish beings. Our first thought is, “What’s in it for me?” Even those who are not actively selfish have little desire to help someone if it's going to cause damage to themselves. And rightly so! Diversity, as it is held forth today, has not satisfactorily answered the question of self-interest. It is held as a higher virtue, which is its own reward. Historically speaking, that is seldom a strong enough incentive to get the vast majority of people to adopt any particular attitude or behavior change. You must appeal to their self interest, and that is why diversity as a goal will never succeed. It's not in anyone's best interests.

Diversity as a vehicle to a goal, on the other hand, answers this fundamental question. We all have someplace to go and our differences can make sure that we all get there in such a way that we not only get what we wanted, we get a little extra. That’s what’s in it for me. I get what I want, and then some. If it happens that I help you get what you want, and then some, so much the better. And I like you better at the end of the journey. The differences work in everyone’s favor, instead of creating a competition over whose values and abilities and contributions are more valid, important, yada, yada, yada. Diversity as a goal simply puts an emphasis on the differences, rather than a mutual goal, and creates an atmosphere of dissent,judgment, conflict and resentment. This will never change.

The diversity pushers seem to feel we should just drop the judgment, but that’s another integral part of human nature. You have a will; a desire and an ability to choose. It is the core of being. But in order to use that with any degree of efficacy, you must have judgment. It is essential to our survival to be able to judge a good thing from a bad thing. No one can give that up and live. And until people figure out that diversity is merely a vehicle, we will continue to have the strife that currently pulses beneath our civilized veneers.

There are those who say that we have no right to say our culture is superior. I say to them, "Bull pucky!" Look at the empirical evidence! We are the most successful country in the world, and when we adhere to its founding principles, we are unbeatable. More importantly, when other countries use these same principles, they are more successful, too! This is not about geography. It's about principles. It always has been. And you cannot have more than one culture being dominant, or the country will rip itself to shreds. I get very angry when people call us a nation of immigrants, because they leave the sentence unfinished. We are a nation of immigrants WHO BECAME AMERICANS. We united under one culture. Proud of our individual heritages, most certainly, but loyalty to countries of origin never superseded loyalty to the chosen homeland. If there is ever a choice to be made between the two, America should win, hands down, in the hearts of every person who lives here. If it doesn't, get out. We don't want you here, any more than you want to be here.

While there may be countless sub-cultures, there can be only one main culture. Anything else is a recipe for destruction, and I don't have to be okay with that.

America is NOT a cultural Imperialist!

I found myself pondering something in my philosophy class(the fruits of which will be seen with increasing regularity here, no doubt). While we were debating whether America is a cultural imperialist or not, I put forth that our system, and our country, were the best in the world. One of my classmates sneered, with no mean amount of derision, “So, our system is perfect?” My first impulse was to say, “No, of course it isn’t.” He answered with an emphatic, “No, it is not!”

I wish to amend my answer.

In the first place, my contention was not that our system was perfect, but that it was the best. Since when is perfection the litmus test for superiority? And secondly, which ought, perhaps, to have come first, our system is perfect. It was founded by God, upon principles that are eternal and immutable. The system is perfect. It is run, alas, by people, who are not, and never shall be. The fact that we execute the system imperfectly is not a poor reflection on the perfection of the concepts, but upon the perfection of our capabilities.

My country is not a cultural imperialist. We are a market society. We offer goods, services and ideas. There is no requirement to buy what we sell, on any level. If people are buying, however, and their ruling bodies don’t like it, they (the rulers) need to take it up with their citizens. We are not under any imperative to NOT share our culture. And, along those lines, why do so many Americans feel that everyone has a right to violently defend their cultures, EXCEPT US? Everyone in the world is entitled to their own beliefs, except Americans. We have to believe in everyone but ourselves. Otherwise we are charcterized as arrogant, domineering and imperialistic; forcing our views on the rest of the world. Poor, innocent, defenseless world at the mercy of big, mean, dumb America. PLEASE!

How long do people think we can be “one nation” with that attitude? And, more terrifyingly, what if that's why they're doing this? They don’t want to be one nation? What then? What do they seriously think will happen to all their freedoms when they get the nation they're trying so hard to build? They're going to find that the world they've built has no place for them. They will have fought hard to achieve self-annihilation. What really scares me is that I think some of them know that. And they're doing it anyway.

Tuesday, October 9, 2007

When I grow up.....

What do you want to be when you grow up? You ask this of every child. But at some point you quit asking, because the growing up is done, and whatever you ARE is apparently what you want to be. And, clearly, I want to be a student. Because thats what I are. I find it frustrating to have thought that I had discovered what I wanted to be " when I grew up", only to discover that I am constitutionally unsuited for it. So now I have to try again. And try I shall, because I refuse to give up! I will have a real job one day "if it takes me the rest of my life, which may end at any minute!"

Not that I'm entirely sorry, mind you. I mean, think of how wretched it would have been to have finished school and gotten a JOB I was constitutionally unsuited for! But it's a tad wearying to be almost back at the starting line, after such a long and rather arduous journey.

But, in the immortal words of Mr. Mouskowitz, "Ah, Feivel! If growing up were easy, would it take so long?"

Wednesday, August 22, 2007

Map to Me

Start in Spring, season of hope and beginnings, with a Mommy that has the greatest heart and mind you've ever encountered and a Daddy who's the perfect playmate. Have an older brother, strong, ruthless, and brave. Get a little sister who had her own spot in your heart from before time and will have one long after it, then a little brother who smells of innocence for longer than anyone should. Be adored by grandparents, and adore back. Live in the orange house. Play house in huge cardboard boxes. Eat food from the garden. Help Mommy can. Sing with Mommy. Dance with Mommy. Feel your heart race with your feet when you hear the music from the ice cream truck.

Start kindergarten. LOVE school. Learn that boys are fun to kiss. Find out you can't kiss until you're engaged. Get engaged the next day. Find out you can't be engaged until you're 18. Fear you'll be dead by then. Get a crush on neighbor boy. Get a crush on boy at school. Learn to do nothing about them. Finish second grade with a sick day. Be excited to finally be able walk to school. Move across town from new school.

Move into house that smells of old stories and friendly ghosts and has the funnest closets. Learn that older brother has a fantastic gift for scaring the daylights out of you, especially in the dark of the old house. Love the huge orchard. Eat unripe apples by the bucket with an apparently cast iron digestive system. Watch Grandpa build house for Mom. Have to be chased out of construction site by wooden spoon wielding Grandma. Sweep sawdust. Pick up scraps. Move dirt and rocks. Gain a favorable reputation in the hardware stores for organizing nuts, bolts and nails when in the shop with Grandpa. Get own room. Beautiful blue carpet. Get own bookshelf! Realize the joy of a double bed that doesn't have to be shared. Still share with sister for fun "sleepover" nights. Scratch each others backs until you fall asleep. Find a perfect moment, suspended in the clear, deep water of a newly filled pool on a random summer day. "Camp" in the basement. Play-act every musical you know. Be content not to be the star. Harbor tiny, but resigned spark of occasional renentment at never getting to be Leisl. Laugh at yourself. Speak fluent Movie-ese. Have entire conversations with family in said language. Laugh while Mom tickles Dad, and older brother keeps merciless time. Know you are loved. Make graham crackers with multi-colored icing on rainy days. Read. Sing. Suddenly realize that your little brother isn't so little. Feel a pang. Miss that smell of innocence. Listen to every record in your Mom's considerable (and cool) collection. Make it through elementary school, despite those pesky fractions. Have 2 good friends.

Begin middle school. Pierce your ears. OOOOOWWWW!!! Not realize just how much you need to grow into your face, and start being aware of WHEN picture day is until picture day. Stop listening to the stupid school photographer. Go to school with mascara on just one eye. Realize that your fellow students seem to have become idiots over the course of one summer. Decide that family is more important than friends. Find friends who think the same. Be invisible. Get good grades. Have bad people skills, and yet not really understand why people don't like you. Watch everyone and their dog get a boyfriend. Be lonely, but not really sorry. Not worth the price. Have unfashionably bad hair. Own first pair of fashionable jeans. Get braces. Still have 2 good friends.

High school. More of the same. Have first kiss with highly inappropriate person, which makes it all quite thrilling. Join volleyball, track and choir. Do fair in the the sports and well in the choir. Get a crush on a senior. Have him be kind. Still think the people your age are idiots. Lose the braces. Endure and Survive high school. Get out a year early. Still have 2 good friends.

Meet a boy who sees you. Likes you. Start writing to each other. Get engaged. Get married. Have some great first apartment stories. Have a perfect baby girl. Fall in love with shy dimples, sparkling, ocean blue eyes and baby belly laughs. Slowly realize that your husband doesn't really like you. He wants a porn life. Find out you don't like him, either. You're not a porn anything. But you're having another baby, whether you like him or not. You'll keep trying. Another beautiful girl. A little elf of a person. Quiet and still and watchful.

Decide you're tired of trying to become something you abhor just to make him like you when he doesn't want to. Leave. Connect with an old friend. Marry said friend because he offers shelter and healing. Heal. Learn you don't need to be sheltered anymore. Discover he still needs to shelter. Go back to being just friends. Get your own place. Re-discover the joy of a double bed you don't have to share(but have a part of you long to share a king size). Still share occasionally with your girls for snuggle time and chats.

Invite God back into your life. Learn to know your parents and siblings as adults. Go to school. Learn to see yourself. Embrace your strength. Live in your power. Be a year from having what you want or the ability to get it. Learn that you always had it. You're here.

Friday, July 13, 2007


I am currently obsessed with Blogthings. You know, those fun little surveys that I give entirely too much credence to? This is the Web version of a psychic 900 number, I swear. Ooo, I wonder what kind of kisser I am? Or what Goddess am I? (for the record, I'm Psyche). I do not ruin relationships with men (I choose to ignore that whole twice-divorced thing), I am a low maintenence woman, a passionate kisser, and a good girlfriend (still waiting for people to catch on to that one) whose power element is water( a fact I find mildly unnerving as my astrological sign is fire)and should be living in 1953. My true love will find me eventually, and it would seem he'll be an earth sign. I'm also ready to get married, apparently, though in no hurry. And I'm a chocolate mocha and orange cheesecake. Who knew?

You Are Psyche!

Eternally in search of purpose and insight.

You're curious and creative with a total sense of wonder.

Totally empathetic, you pick up on other's moods easily.

Just be sure to pamper yourself as well!

You Are a Dreaming Soul

Your vivid emotions and imagination takes you away from this world

So much so that you tend to live in your head most of the time

You have great dreams and ambitions that could be the envy of all...

But for you, following through with your dreams is a bit difficult

You are charming, endearing, and people tend to love you.

Forgiving and tolerant, you see the world through rose colored glasses.

Underneath it all, you have a ton of passion that you hide from others.

Always hopeful, you tend to expect positive outcomes in your life.

Souls you are most compatible with: Newborn Soul, Prophet Soul, and Traveler Soul

Wednesday, May 30, 2007

I am Emma Woodhouse!

Take the Quiz here!

:: E M M A ::

You are Emma Woodhouse of Emma! You like being the queen of your social circle (small and provincial as it may be), and feel it's your duty to help those less influential than you. You often meddle in the affairs of others, though you do it with a pure heart. You are often deluded in your flights of fancy, but your good intentions and creative spirit make you someone anyone could like.

Well, it took me a minute to get used to this, but yeah. That's me.

Wednesday, April 25, 2007

The Sound of My Fury

I cannot believe what I have just received in the mail today. Somehow I was unaware that Premiere magazine is no more. And as I have a subscription through the end of next year, they are foisting me off onto US Weekly. I'm getting a tabloid instead of a real magazine about movies! The least they could have done was foist me off within the same genre! I don't care about the celebrities, except when it comes to what they have coming out in the nearest cineplex! I don't care who's dating whom, who's cheating on whom, who's making out with whom, who's in rehab again, IT'S ALL NOTHING BUT STUPID RIDICULOUSNESS. I just want to know about movies, okay? Is that too much to ask? And I liked doing it on paper. I liked being able to take it with me if I felt like it. I liked the pretty pictures and the fun articles. NOW what do I do? Huh?! HUH?!?!?
Where can I go to find information about movies BEFORE they hit the theaters? I don't want to hear critical review. Frankly, I have little use for critics. I canmake up my own mind about what I like. Leah Rosen is the movie critic for People magazine and she is my polar opposite in movie taste. So if she loves it< I can pretty much guarantee I'll hate it and vice versa. I just want an overview of the storylines and some fun stories from on-set. I don't think that's asking too much. And I am going to miss Libby Gelman-Waxner's column like you wouldn't believe.

I'm in mourning. It's just not right.

Wednesday, March 28, 2007

I hate shopping.....

I've always thought that shopping must be easier, and therefore more enjoyable(on pretty much every level), when you are slim.

I've changed my mind.

I am, of course, nothing resembling slim at the moment, but this is irrelevant. I have done some looking into my past and I have realized that even when I was slim, I hated shopping. I walk into a retail clothing establishment and every ounce of joy and energy drains from my body. Within 15 minutes, my head feels like it wants to float to the ceiling or sink down through my spinal cord. My eyes feel like they're about 3 sizes too big for their sockets and that said sockets are lined with sand. If I didn't know it wasn't possible, I'd swear I was allergic to shopping. I should make clear that this reaction is largely engendered by shopping for clothing. I can spend an entire day in Borders, Barnes and Noble, Hastings, even Office Depot and I'm just great. Maybe if clothes came with a back pocket blurb (like on a book jacket) that let me know wether I would enjoy this item of clothing, it'd be a little less pressure-filled. But no. I have to go remove my clothes so many times my hair looks like the perpetual victim of an electrical storm, while I try to squeeze my uncooperative body with it's lumps of varying sizes and shapes into clothing that makes few allowances for said lumps.

And another thing..........

Do market analysts never figure out that flourescent lighting is perhaps the most depression-inducing lighting on the face of the planet today? Forget Prozac and all those other drugs. BAN FLOURESCENT LIGHTING! Do you know anyone who looks good in it's glare? You could put the most beautiful person on the planet under those lights(that being subjective, I'll let you fill in the blank for who you think that should be) and they would still look sallow-skinned and ill. Then you add to that fact that the harsh lighting is way overhead. Anyone who's taken any art classes knows what kind of hideously unflattering shadows that casts. Even if you have but the tiniest pooch of a belly, overhead lighting will maximize it. Shadows under your eyes? Worse! Bags under your eyes? Tripled in size! The shadow cast by multiple chins could cause a solar eclipse. It's just not right. I want new clothes because I already feel awful in my old ones. If you want me to frequent your establishment, make sure I feel good being there! Make sure the music playing doesn't sound like it comes from a video game, that the lighting at least makes an attempt to be kind, and that the prices don't make me want to swallow my tongue.

That's all I'm saying.

Tuesday, March 27, 2007

Well, here I am. Dragged into the new millenium by my sister who is, as ever, the queen of all things Cool and Cutting Edge. Of course, that's pretty much how I progress in all matters technical. Someone has to drag me into the present. I mean, I just barely bought my first cell phone, and even now I'm not really sure I want it. I keep it off most of the time anyway, so why have it?! Oh, I know, I know. It's for "emergencies". I just never want to reach a day when my definition of an emergency changes just because I have the ability to communicate it to another person.

But that aside, I'm a little leery of this whole blogging thing. I have no problem talking. None. It's the talking even when I've run out of anything to say. It's the question of whether or not anyone else will actually be interested in what I have to say. Every writer's greatest fear; that I will pour out my soul and hear only the applause of the crickets. But here goes anyway. Who knows? Maybe the cricket market is vastly under-represented, and I'll find my niche there.