Too Easy February 26, 2010Posted by lizp4 in Uncategorized.
… which probably explains why we haven’t seen much of Algore lately…
(Hat tip: Frugal Cafe Blog Zone) Thanks, y’all!
The Watchables February 23, 2010Posted by lizp4 in Uncategorized.
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G4TV has a program called “Movies That Don’t Suck.” Most of the candidates are “B-flicks,” shows that simply never really took off, but weren’t unwatchable. Lots of them launched the careers of young actors and actresses. Sometimes, I find one on there I haven’t seen in a long time. But I have my own list of movies that most people just turn their noses up at for unspecified reasons.
Herewith, in no particular order, and representing a mere fraction of the ones I like to watch, some movies that don’t suck:
1. Real Genius
2. Better Off Dead
3. Grosse Pointe Blank
4. Independence Day
5. Inspector Gadget 1
6. Short Circuit
7. Charlie and the Chocolate Factory
8. Cat in the Hat (live action)
10. A Series of Unfortunate Events
11. Mouse Hunt
12. Baby’s Day Out
13. Alien Nation
14. The Gods Must Be Crazy
15. Hellboy I & II
17. Dante’s Peak
18. The Addams Family & Family Values
19. The Frisco Kid
20. O Brother, Where Art Thou?
22. Man on Fire
23. The Fall
This is only a partial list. You will notice that there are a lot of children’s movies, escapist, and comic book heroes. This is because most of the other stuff that comes out of Hollywood should go straight into the toilet. I hope you find something here that you will enjoy. These are movies I watch every time they turn up on television, some I’ve seen more than ten times. Have fun!
Spot Barack February 21, 2010Posted by lizp4 in Uncategorized.
Find the current resident in this photo.
Update: The current resident is not in this picture. Barack Obama is the Black man loaded with leis. The man standing on his left is the current resident’s grandfather, Stanley Dunham. (I’m filing this one under, “Things That Make Me Go, “Hmmmm…”)
What A Life! February 21, 2010Posted by lizp4 in Uncategorized.
Can you imagine what the Nanny State would think about the parents of the kids in these ads? Probably something like, “Don’t you know your children were playing on those dangerous things WITHOUT supervision, padding, helmets, knee and elbow protection, or safety eyeware? And, they were obviously in the street or on the sidewalk!” (of course. Those were the only paved, smooth surfaces.)
The kids wouldn’t have cared. If they weren’t risking their necks in the winter on the snowy hillsides with the famous Flexible Flyer sleds, they were racing in the summer on the belly-flop Flexy Racers. (They were equipped with simple brakes, but kids preferred to use the toes of their shoes.) What a life!
What a loss. Today’s kids can’t play much of anything without sombody “Tsk-ing” and complaining about “…Danger!” or “…Helmets!”
PS: These toys were awesome, and kids wanted them even worse than they wanted the Red Ryder Carbine Action Single-Shot BB Guns with a compass in the stock and this thing which tells time.
Ladder Of Divine Ascent February 15, 2010Posted by lizp4 in Uncategorized.
How often have you started into Lent with the hope that THIS time, you were really going to make a change and make it stick?
The icon above is called “The Ladder of Divine Ascent,” and it depicts our slow and problematic movement toward Heaven. In the icon, we see people on their way to Heaven, having to struggle with the ladder, but being attacked and wounded by imps and demons shooting arrows of temptation and using ropes to pull down susceptible people.
Many people are falling from the ladder because the attacks were too much for them. Lent is one more special time to fight back against those imps, and to protect ourselves from the demons, by practices of prayer and perseverance. The angels and saints are the ones in the upper left hand corner, praying for those on the ladder. The saints are the ones who successfully made it to the top, proving that it can be done. Those in the lower right are the ones who fell. They are in Hell, and they are weeping, because they know what they have lost. At the top of the ladder, Jesus is calling the souls to come up, and is shown welcoming the new arrivals.
We are not in this battle alone, nor are we without weapons. We have the prayers of the saints to encourage us, and the consolation that we are called to holiness and Heaven by none other than the Lord of the Universe Himself. I deliberately left the size of this image large to allow you to see details and perhaps to be edified by it.
“One at a time is pretty good fishing,” my sainted mother-in-law used to say. You will read it often on the Sourdough, since it is one of my favorite pithy sayings. She was telling her children to be patient, to be persistent, and to be proud of what they accomplished.
Lent is one time when “easier” is often better, especially if one wishes to make permanent changes. How can we expect to succeed at the big things if we are still unable to master the smaller disciplines? In Lent, we can pick our battles, and attack inattention at prayer, for instance, or add an extra prayer practice. We can choose a charity and donate to it, and keep it up. Small steps, indeed, but important. Almsgiving, for instance, is a great Christian act of love and penitence.
The goal of Lent is to provide us with an opportunity to improve our Christian character, a chance to cancel forever a pattern of sinful behavior that we have heretofore not been able to conquer, and to help us stay on that Ladder of Divine Ascent.
We must repeat and repeat, and be persistent. Thomas a’ Kempis says that ‘Bad habits are overcome by good habits.” A good habit to develop is to keep trying to overcome that bad habit. The goal is improvement, not earthly perfection.
One habit at a time. One Lent at a time. The only thing that sets the saints apart from the rest of us is their persistence in just this way. Their disciplined methods are good examples for us if we are looking for strength. Read Kempis’ “Imitation of Christ,” over and over, until you begin to realize that he is pointing the way to sainthood to his readers, showing them how to persevere.
Lent isn’t a time for phony woe. It’s a time for real and positive progress up the Ladder of Divine Ascent.
A Valentine For You February 14, 2010Posted by lizp4 in Uncategorized.
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When I was a kid growing up in Payson, Utah, Valentine’s Day was a big deal. Boxes of chocolates had big corsages, satin bows, ruffles, pictures of Elvis, and weighed a pound or more.
We bought our valentines “by the each” at the local dime store. The penny valentines were about two inches wide and four inches tall. Five-cent cards were bigger, and on up the scale. When you got to the 25-cent cards, sometimes you got a free envelope. These amorous messengers were suitable for giving to teachers or parents.
We made our Valentine boxes out of just about anything, mostly shoeboxes, if I remember correctly. Construction on these magnificent works of art could take weeks, and actually cost money, mostly for crepe paper and construction paper, paper doilies, and cupid cutouts.
Getting a valentine from somebody was significant in kid-dom. It meant the person was actually acknowledging that you existed. The person who had a crush on you (or not) would usually spring for a ten-cent card and a “secrete adirmerer”
Sometimes, kids could expect a cookie in their lunch bag, or a cupcake after supper, too. And what Valentine’s Day was complete without the knock on the door? When we went to the door, there was no one there, but a valentine or two (in envelopes!) would be lying on the welcome mat, addressed, but NOT SIGNED! It was the high point of the day, and could make kids wonder for weeks about who might have left a 25-cent valentine on the doorstep. Love was in the air, and Life was good.
Forgiveness And Gratitude: Reflections On Cheesefare Sunday February 13, 2010Posted by lizp4 in Uncategorized.
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This is Cheesefare Sunday. It is the last Sunday before the beginning of Great Lent. It is a day for bittersweet reflection, penitence, and pondering our faith. Sometimes it is called “Forgiveness Sunday”, and it is a time for us to forgive and to ask forgiveness of those we love and live with. It is marked with special prayers and ceremonies, and leads us into the solemn time of waiting for the Risen Lord at Pasch.
If you are not Byzantine or Orthodox, this probably isn’t going to mean much to you, but to us, it is a very important part of what we believe. It is the beginning of Lent for all Christians. Lent is always a time of reflection, sorrow, deprivation, and resolution, as we strive to bring ourselves into a life of living faith and gratitude to the Lord for His Sacrifice on our behalf.
May it be fruitful and rich for you, and may you find much for which to be grateful. May the Risen Lord at Pasch find you much improved because of this special time.