Today's Mighty Oak


Alright, let’s see what we have today.  First up, it’s almost time for NaNoWriMo!  This will be my 13th year!

Dominic Monaghan has joined the cast of Star Wars: Episode IX!

In case you (for whatever reason) thought otherwise, the SCOTUS nominee, Brett Kavanaugh, is opposed to same-sex marriage and would certainly rule against it (if there is a conservative majority on the court, it will be back and I’ll lose my rights).

In other horrifying news, the administration has now directed federal contractors that they can discriminate against LGBT people based on ‘religious beliefs.’  Remember when I said that elections have consequences?  Yeah, this is not good.

The anti-gay baker from the Masterpiece decision is back, and now is saying he doesn’t have to serve trans customers.

2 Political Junkies covers the grand jury report about the Catholic Church:

While the Catholic Church was protecting and covering up the sex-crimes of some of its members, let’s all remember that it was also lecturing everyone else on the evils of:
Birth control
Abortion
Masturbation
Sex outside of marriage
Not being straight (i.e. being either “L” or “G” or “B” or “T” and so on)
Any number of other issues regarding “sexual morality”

The word you’re looking for is hypocrisy. Huge blatant hypocrisy.

No amount of contemporary apologies will change that.

Okay, onto some better and more beautiful news, there is a fake final image sent by the Cassini probe, which is beautiful (but fake because it wasn’t the last photo sent).  The last photo is also breathtaking:



There’s a couple things I try to do every day: a quick meditation, rolling or stretching my legs, and getting back on track with tracking my calories.  One thing that I was doing daily, for about 10 months or so, was using Duolingo to ‘learn’ French.

My plan had been to attend the Gay Games, which were held in Paris in August.  I ultimately didn’t go, but even after I knew that was going to be the case, I kept with my French practice until my birthday this week.

I learned two things.  One, Duolingo teaches foreign languages in a way that’s not all that compatible with how I learn.  And that’s okay.  I have two friends who are foreign language teachers.  One uses Duolingo as homework for her students to do each week.  The other doesn’t use it, since it’s only based on memorization, not actually learning the grammar rules.  What I learned about myself is that I need to understand the grammar rules, just memorizing vocab and matching up nouns with the right verb form wasn’t helpful.

And two, French is a silly language.  Granted, English is even worse, and I’m sure it was augmented by Duolingo’s format, but there were so many weird quirks that made no sense (and were never explained) that it was frustrating.

So I stuck it out until my birthday, and then with the new year (to me), I decided to drop French.  I was never going to be fluent in it, although I did enjoy picking up a few things, and I hoped that I would have at least been able to not be completely lost while in Paris.



Alright, let’s see what we have today.  First up, a high school valedictorian was thrown out of his house for being gay, and raised money so he could attend college, all while being homeless his senior year.

Jake Shears is back with a new single.  it gets more fun as it goes along:

Someone put together an Iron Man tribute video.  He was always my dad’s favorite character growing up, so this was neat to watch!

Topher Grace edited the three Hobbit movies down to one, two hour one.  Yes to all of this:

Grace told IndieWire that he undertook the ambitious fan edit project in part to unwind from his newest role in Spike Lee’s BlacKkKlansman. Grace indicated that he felt stressed from having to portray white supremacist David Duke, and diving into Tolkien’s cinematic world was something of a version of therapy. (He also shared his belief that The Hobbit shouldn’t have been so greatly expanded upon for the big screen in the first place

The Aquaman trailer looks really good, and it’s great to have a minority director at the help and in the lead role!

And the next Harry Potter movie has a new trailer:

Leslie Jones’ latest live twitter was Infinity Wars, and it did not disappoint.

Jeff Session’s new “religious liberty taskforce’ is just a thinly veiled anti-queer commission.  And surprise, it’s being spearheaded by an anti-gay activist group.

A Buffy reboot was announced, but it’s actually more of a continuation, just twenty years later.  How this will fit in with the comics, we’ll have to see.

That’s it for today, have a great one!



Alright, let’s see what we have today.  First up, I might have actually linked to this before, but did you know that we have a plan in case we ever find Nessie?  Now you do!

If you haven’t seen it already, stop everything you’re doing and watch the new Randy Rainbow song:

There’s going to be a Baby Groot Chia Pet!

The Downton Abbey movie is finally confirmed and moving forward!

Remember all that money Jill Stein raised for a recount, yeah, she’s spending it on her legal defense for her involvement with Russia.  Raise your hand if you’re surprised.  Nobody?  I didn’t think so.

Gay ‘conversion therapy’ is torture.  Full stop.  And there’s a feature film about it and it looks powerful:

Queen Elizabeth II is a master stateswoman.  She greeted the President last month while wearing a brooch given to her by the Obamas.

Speaking of Britain, an artists has created a portrait of Princess Diana using diamond dust and HIV+ blood:

And in infuriating news, the Health and Human Services have removed all LGBT references from the ObamaCare website.  The erasure continues.

Integrity USA celebrates progress made at the General Convention.

And finally, Stranger Things 3 has a great new promo!



Today is the last day of Camp NaNoWriMo, which has been a lot of fun!  My goal for the month was to update my site, as well as get back into the habit of writing each day (not for work).

And I’ll say that was a success.  There were a few days where the writing was a little different (setting up the podcast page, for example), but I was still creating words.  In the process, I got the portfolio section organized, mobile editing set-up, added a new blog and did some other cleanup work.

This week is the second week of my training plan for the GAP Relay, so I’m actually good to be able to take a bit of a breather, but I’d like to continue writing more regularly.  I also want to dive in and get back to work on Warhol’s Phone and The Great and Secret Show.

But for now, I’ll raise a glass with the other members of our Camp cabin, the Drunkest Slytherpuffs, and enjoy the feeling of meeting my goal.  Thanks for reading along.



Today wraps up my first week of training for the GAP Relay, I’ll be keeping track of my training through the Gayt Analysis blog.  And also in good news, it looks like I’ll be able to get my photo galleries up sooner than I thought.  It will still take some time to get that all sorted out, so probably not by the end of Camp NaNoWriMo, but I’m still excited about that!

Otherwise, this has just been a weekend of adulting, lots of laundry, work around the house, and some relaxing on the deck.  I did however, get supplies to make dairy free root beer floats, so that will be happening tonight, and I’m very excited for it!



Another quick update, from my phone (I’m so excited I can do that!)

Enjoying the weather this weekend with a lovely run at Open Streets Pittsburgh, and then also bottles the beer I brewed, so in two weeks, just in time for the Ultra Team Meetup, I’ll have a Scottish Ale!



Just a quick note, today was another one of those ‘behind the scenes’ days.  I did some updates that were more involved than I thought, but should be working fine!  When I add things to the portfolio section (or others in the future), they won’t show up on the main page, leaving that just for announcements and blog posts.

I also added a sticky post directing anyone to the three main parts of the site, now the last piece of the puzzle is getting the photo galleries up and going, but that still maybe be a few weeks due to APIs and development of plugins and whatnot.  But overall, I’m really happy with where I’ve gotten the site in this month, so I’m calling Camp NaNoWriMo a success!



Part of my Camp NaNoWriMo project has been working on this site, so doing a lot of behind the scenes work as well as getting some public pages finally up and sorted.  I have two projects left for that.  The first is a minor change, but will take a bit of work to future-proof it.

The second, was what I was working on yesterday, so I want to take a minute to write about it, because, it’s a story.

So, one area I’d like to include is photo galleries.  I tend to take a lot of pictures (especially of signs) and I do enough interesting things that I have a sizable photo library.  Years ago, on an older version of this site, I uploaded them into galleries, but then I realized that I didn’t want to deal with server space and manually uploading everything.

Enter Picasa.  I was able to upload images to it and quickly and easily create shareable galleries.  Worked great (and I do still like the, no unsupported, desktop client), but eventually Google moved to Google Photos.

Here’s what I’ve found out in the last few days: they didn’t make a Google Photos API, meaning, there was no way for other websites to communicate with Google Photos.  The Picasa API still exists, it just hasn’t been updated in the last two years (and my galleries are still out there, thank goodness).  So while there are plenty of plugins to make image galleries easy for Picasa, all my photos which are now automatically uploaded to Google Photos, had no where to go.

There are workarounds, but it takes quite a bit of know how, and I stumbled my way through about half of it, but I”m still working on getting things how I actually want them to be.

But all of that changed a few weeks ago!  Google released an API for Google Photos and now extensions are being updated and added.  So while I won’t have the galleries up for July, it will still, finally, be a thing!  So look for that sometime soonish, I hope!



Alright, let’s see what we have today.  A bit of a shorter update, but still some fun things to pass along.

Downton Abbey is officially returning with a movie!

In case you haven’t seen Randy Rainbow’s latest, it’s genius:

An important read about how Aquaman represents fans of color.

Like I said, short update today, but I’ll be back with more soon.  Just a busy week with the start of my training plan and a team meeting for the GAP relay.

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