Today's Mighty Oak


Civil marriage is very different from matrimony, although the two have become somewhat intertwined over the years. The fight for marriage equality is for civil rights: building a life together, joint property and taxes, medical powers of attorney, all the really boring but important things that seem to take effect during an emergency, as well as the social recognition of your spouse and validation of the important of that relationship.

But that is separate from the ceremony/sacrament of matrimony performed in a house of worship. True, a member of the clergy may file a marriage certificate to the state, but that is just as often done by a judge, justice of the peace or other officer with legal standing in their place, and the marriage certificate is a legal, not religious document. Matrimony is the faith’s recognition of a legal relationship, the two can just be taken care of in the same ceremony if the couple wishes.

Religions are free to decide for themselves what constitutes a union they would like to bless, with or without the state’s approval. Already, we have seen some churches like the Universal Unitarians who fully endorse and bless same-sex marriages, and are a great flip to the right-wing talking point that marriage equality impedes religious freedoms: the state’s refusal to recognize marriage equality impedes the freedom of religious institutions that wish to recognize them. And yes, that is a stretch, since faiths are free to generally do what they like, but it’s a good counterpoint in a pinch.

But this post is not about either end of the spectrum, it’s about the messy middle, the conversations happening there, and what we lose by not recognizing the dignity of us all.

The Episcopal Church, and specifically the diocese of Pittsburgh, has been one of the epicenters of the maelstrom of same-sex matrimony. The diocese of Pittsburgh itself is massive, covering 11 counties, so it covers a wide berth of viewpoints and the state.

For those not following the politics of the Episcopal Diocese of Pittsburgh (read: everybody), here’s the condensed version: In 2003, Bishop Gene Robinson, an openly gay man in a committed relationship, was confirmed by the General Convention and then consecrated a bishop in New Hampshire. The bishop of Pittsburgh, Robert Duncan was very vocal in his displeasure at this.

In 2008, after Duncan criticized the Archbishop of Canterbury and worked to start a schism, along with other various offenses, he was deposed by the Episcopal Church. He then formed the Anglican Church in North America and was elected their first archbishop and primate, although whether or not his church will be fully recognized by the See of Canterbury has yet to be seen.

At the 2009 General Convention, a “Blessing of Same Sex Union” 1was approved, which included my former (now retired) rector as an author. The General Convention approved its use, contingent on the consent of the local Bishop.

After going through a lengthy and very public lawsuit process (to get our property back that Duncan’s new church was trying to claim as their own), the Episcopal Diocese of Pittsburgh went through a search process and selected Bishop Dorsey McConnell.

Bishop McConnell, knowing he was coming into the maelstrom of Pittsburgh, decided to take an inquisitive approach, putting in place a series of discussions to discuss the matter and come to an agreement as to whether or not to offer the blessing ceremony. That agreement, would not dictate his final decision however, but more served as a barometer for him to take into consideration.

I personally found the discussions themselves to be insulting. We’ve spent a decade discussing this in Pittsburgh, and we were finally moving on and putting the harmful past behind us. A new bishop, at least to me, was a fresh start, a chance to move forward and continue to heal, not reopen these wounds.

But instead, we had this period of discussion where both sides were required to be represented equally, a requirement which was found to be difficult to fulfill: opponents against same-sex matrimony either are few and far between or did not want to discuss their position, even in groups of completely like-minded individuals (the first stage of this three-stage process was discussions in groups where all participants agreed on their position, to better understand the process to be followed in stages two and three).

I would have thought this would have been an indication as to where the diocese was, but onward we trudged through the rest of the process, Episcopalians, if nothing else, love tradition and ceremony (and to drink. Seriously, we love to drink). Bishop McConnell’s decision was actually delayed as he spent more time going over the discussion groups’ findings, and while it appears he showed some restraint in his letter to the diocese, it is apparent where he falls on the issue.  He addressed the diocese in this pastoral letter and accompanying writings 2.

Bishop Dorsey does not want this to be seen a stepping stone to matrimony, and shows a strangely sex-obsessed viewpoint, writing that “There is no reference to bodily union” in the same-sex blessing ceremony. I’m typically used to observing sex-obsessed theologians in the Catholic Church, not the Episcopal, so I was caught off guard by the comment.

I suppose reference to bodily union could have been inserted (okay, I have the mentality of a five year old) into the ceremony, that is of course, unless the Bishop feels that only cis-man/cis-woman intercourse is allowable bodily union: I can guarantee there is plenty of “bodily union” in same-sex relationships, but again, why this obsession with gay sex? Seriously, I have a hard time when opponents of LGBT rights think about gay sex more than I do.

Bishop McConnell writes, discussing at length the subject of children in matrimony, and in the rite itself. He questions what type of love is being revealed through the same-sex blessing, apparently not able to understand love and commitment outside of rearing children.

The Bishop continues:

“The couple signifies the totality of humanity, representing the image of God – once shattered in Eden – now restored in Christ.”

Before we get to the meat of this sentence, let’s remind everyone, that the first 12 chapters of the Bible are myth, myths that every culture and religion have in some form: Creation (go back and read Genesis, the world is created twice, in different orders each time), original sin/cast out of paradise, flood and the scattering of people/languages (tower of Babel). So it’s great to look back on and pine for the paradise of Eden, but it is still a (remarkably common) myth.

Now, if this is a backhanded reference to procreation, as Adam and Even apparently went on to populate the Earth, I’ve never known the Episcopal Church to deny matrimony to couples past menopause, or even those not wishing to have children. But I take this more of a slap to the face that same-sex couples are somehow not equal to heterosexual couples.

As academic biblical scholars, we wish to clarify that the biblical texts do not support the frequent claim that marriage between one man and one woman is the only type of marriage deemed acceptable by the Bible’s authors.

So, while it is not accurate to state that biblical texts would allow marriages between people of the same sex, it is equally incorrect to declare that a “one-man-and-one-woman” marriage is the only allowable type of marriage deemed legitimate in biblical texts.
This is not only our modern, academic opinion. This view of the multiple definitions of “biblical” marriage has been acknowledged by some of the most prominent names in Christianity. For example, the famed Reformationist Martin Luther wrote a letter in 1524 in which he commented on polygamy as follows:

“I confess that I cannot forbid a person to marry several wives, for it does not oppose the Holy Scriptures.”

Accordingly, we must guard against attempting to use ancient texts to regulate modern ethics and morals, especially those ancient texts whose endorsements of other social institutions, such as slavery, would be universally condemned today, even by the most adherent of Christians 3.  Perhaps Bishop McConnell doesn’t personally know any gay couples: coming out to friends and family is the most powerful political action a member of the LGBT community can do because it forces others to see us as fellow human beings instead of an abstract concept.

The fight for equality has many fronts, and while basic civil rights and safety are the most important, there is something to be said for religious rights as well. Being able to celebrate love and commitment, with your faith community, is another important validation, not just of your relationship, but your existence as well.

The institutionalized bullying and discrimination that we see so often come from faith communities is very much a contributing factor to the epidemic suicides of LGBT youth. So when we, as a faith community, fight for equality, it’s not only to move forward as a group, but to also save lives. And the influence that the faith community can have on society as a whole is further proof that these internal struggles are important.

It doesn’t have to be like this. Jesus Christ never spoke a word of condemnation against homosexuals. Churches don’t have any need to condemn LGBT people, or fight against our equal treatment in our country. A growing number of church communities have chosen to be affirming and supportive of LGBT people. I have the joy of experiencing this directly in the numerous church groups who send volunteers to cook in our shelters and collect clothing and even Christmas gifts for our young people.

A healthy society prioritizes the safety of children. Decent people do not stand by in silence when children are being abused. We need to recognize that the condemnation of LGBT people in churches leads to the abuse and rejection of LGBT children in far too many Christian homes 4.

“Not all Christians are like that. 5” One of the things I’ve always like about the Episcopal church, or at least my own parish, is that I am welcomed, fully. And while we still have work to do, and while we in Pittsburgh tend to work things out in big, messy, public ways, moving forward to a place where we’re all welcomed in God’s love, without conditions, is what we strive for.

So I hope that while he is here, Bishop McConnell can get to know more of us, not just members of the LGBT community, but the Yinzers we all are: genuine, hard-working individuals, just looking to be treated equally.

I don’t expect Bishop McDonnell to perform any same-sex blessings himself, and I do appreciate him extending the option to each priest, but it still seems like he only begrudgingly allows even that. And the same-sex blessing is not matrimony: while civil unions usually offer the same rights and responsibilities of marriage, without the significance and weight of the word, this blessing ceremony seems to fall much shorter, which is something we can both agree on.
I was the lone Episcopal student at a Catholic college (it was me and two professors), and I spent four years making them examine their faith, defend it, and hopefully be more welcoming in it, all while expressing my love for my own church, one that “never put barriers on God’s love.”

The Episcopal church is a refuge. A place of peace and love. Let’s keep it that way.

I’ve never met the bishop personally. But I would bet that he’s a kind, caring, passionate man. And I certainly appreciate the work that he does. And I don’t want to turn this into a personal attack, but reverse our roles for just a moment: let’s have some “discussions” to figure out if his love, his marriage should be recognized, should be allowed in God’s eyes. Of course that is going to hurt.

But he’s not inside my head. He doesn’t know what it’s like to see a constant barrage of hatred and bigotry thrown at you and your community, just for trying to live your own lives. He does not know how that can damage a person, damage a child. Those aren’t scars one can easily heal from.

And aren’t we a bit presumptuous to proclaim we know what God is thinking, anyway? Yes, yes, he has advanced degrees in theology, and I just took a couple courses during my time at college, so he actually does have a much better grasp on intellectually understanding God and religion. But I still have a hard time moving past God wanting anything except love from us: love for Him and love for our fellow man. Let’s leave the judgement and damnation to Him.

But what if we were to take this back in history a bit. Let’s say we’re discussing interracial matrimony, would we demand that both sides be equally represented?*

I’m sorry, bishop, but your bigotry is showing.

It’s dehumanizing to have “discussions” set up to talk about you, like you’re not in the room, to examine an entire group of people, to pass judgement on them.

Pittsburgh is tired of this debate, and Bishop McConnell had to have known that in coming here. We’ve been through this time and time again, and we were finally healing, finally coming out the other side, putting angry and lengthy legal battles behind us.

It took me a while, but I finally figured out why I was so uncomfortable thinking about attending the discussions, even in my own church. Having to face a group of people, that somehow thinks that I’m broken is not something I would willingly do, not any more.
I’m not broken. This is how God made me. And if you can’t see that, then you can’t see my basic humanity.

I’ve dealt with a lot of hate and intolerance, and I’m not saying the Bishop is approaching this with either consciously. But it is there, whether he wants to acknowledge it or not. When we insist that both sides have equal representation, when one only seeks to damn the other, we’re not in a welcoming place.

Since this is on the Internet, and as I’ve always said, “if you can’t laugh at sex or religion, you’re doing it wrong,” I feel compelled to include a few images to close. Mature? Probably not. But even through their humor, they have some truth to them, and besides, we need to laugh:

Jesus Christ never spoke a word of condemnation against homosexuals. In fact, I only really remember His message being about love. Love for God, and love for your neighbor.

 

*I got some great help in researching the history of interracial marriage in the Episcopal Church from @revlucymeg 6 (with assists from @ChurchSnobTEC 7 and @MapleAnglican 8) who pointed me to the correct Canons of the church: in the 1930’s the church adopted canon law to make matrimony correspond with local law, so with the Loving v. Virginia ruling (and probably many priests before that ignored anti-interracial marriage laws), and others around the country as laws evolved, the church was in accord with civil society.

There is a separate Canon stating matrimony is only between one man and one woman, although with the growing number of states that offer marriage equality, a task force is working on the wording of a new Canon to rectify the situation. My guess is we will see that resolution in a the next General Convention.


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Notes:

  1. https://www.churchpublishing.org/products/index.cfm?fuseaction=productDetail&productID=9743 ↩
  2. http://www.episcopalpgh.org/docs/PastoralLetter131125-FINAL.pdf↩
  3. http://www.desmoinesregister.com/article/20130603/OPINION01/306030016/Iowa-View-1-man-1-woman-isn-t-the-Bible-s-only-marriage-view?gcheck=1 ↩
  4. http://www.towleroad.com/2013/03/lgbt-homeless-youth-describe-rejection-from-christian-households-videos.html ↩
  5. http://notalllikethat.org/ ↩
  6. https://twitter.com/revlucymeg ↩
  7. https://twitter.com/ChurchSnobTEC ↩
  8. https://twitter.com/MapleAnglican ↩


Preview: The story of this race report actually began more than a decade ago, when the Port Authority closed off a section of the T track…

Race information

Goals

Goal Description Completed?
A 5K: PR Yes
B 5K: Sub 30 Yes
C Half: Finish Yes
D Half: Don’t walk Yes
E Half: Enjoy it Yes

Pictures

Training

After running the EQT 10-Miler in the fall, I decided to use another HH training plan, this time going for his Novice 2 Half plan, since one of my goals was to bump up to running four days a week. I hit every single one of the runs, although had to do a lot of moving the days around due to travelling for work. While not ideal, it still got me through injury free, so I was thankful for that for my first half. Most of my long runs were half on pavement/cement and half on trail. In hindsight, I wish I had done more time on the pavement, but otherwise I was very pleased with my long runs, I really came to enjoy them, except for my final 12 mile run, but that was due to the temperature being in the high seventies and muggy as all hell.

A friend from the Frontrunners and I also became accountability buddies about three weeks out from race day, and we texted each other each day to make sure were foam rolling, which helped a lot to ease quite a bit of stiffness that I had accumulated.

Pre-Race: 5K

Friends and I always volunteer Thursday night, helping to set up the expo (we unpack every single shirt. Good lord, there are so many) and going back down Friday, packet pick-up was a breeze. I ended up playing the part of “packet mule” picking up seven total (including two for myself). I had quite a collection of drawstring bags on my back walking through the convention center! Normal assortment of vendors, although to be honest, I was sad that this is the first festival (of any kind) that I didn’t see Gutter Helmet. If there’s a place to buy booth space, they are usually there, I’ve seen them at Pride and at alternative-fuel vehicle conventions.

My best friend’s wife comes over the night before this race every year and we made waffles with peanut butter and honey and watched an animated movie. The “movies for ages 3-4 and 5-7” fit us just right on Netflix.

Race: 5K

It rained. It was gross, but we knew it was going to be going into it. I’ve run enough in the rain and snow that it didn’t bother me, although other friends I was running with complained. In my mind, this was actually the A event for me to race. I’ve run a sub-30 5K on a track many times, but never did in a race. This was the very first race I ever ran, so it’s a great benchmark for me each year, and I really wanted to break 30 this year. /u/ahf0913 even predicted that I would so in my mind, the pressure was on.

My friend who paced me at the 10-miler ran with me, as my ‘almost full out race pace but not quite since I’m running my first half tomorrow’ pace fits neatly into his shake-out race for the full the next day. We settled in, and because of the crowds, fell a bit behind the 10:00/mile pacer. Which I enjoyed: he was great eye candy. But eventually we passed him after the first mile. My friend looked at his watch and said that we were actually running a 9:30 pace, which was great for me! There was an unexpected bottleneck going across one bridge (one side was closed for construction), but otherwise, just normal foot traffic in a race that size. The rest of the race was typical, lots of great cheering fans, including the woman I look for every year as we leave Allegheny Commons and head for the bridge. She always has a pot and a metal spoon; last year I called out that I look for her ever year, and we had another moment this year, she really is just my favorite spectator on the course!

We cross the bridge and take in the last mile. As we turn onto the Boulevard of the Allies, I see the clock time, try to do some quick mental calculations, hurt my brain, and just give it a great kick. Chip time: 29:33, knocking a minute off my 5K race PR and a minute and a half from my time last year!

Post-Race: 5K

The weather was raining and cold, so we skipped the finish line festival, and like so many others, ducked into the T to go back to the North Shore, we did however meet at Lost Child, as is our tradition, since we have the mentalities of children. Crammed onto the subway, as we were headed under the river, I glanced up and saw a friend from the Frontruners and his we chatted through people’s arms until we could get off at the platform. I met his husband, they congratulated me on my PR and wished each other luck for the next day.

We did a quick change and stretch at a friend’s hotel, I lost my voice cheering for the Kid’s Marathon as we walked back to the Expo where I cheesed for a picture with a giant 13.1. Also of note, there is another giant cut out of Dick’s (they sponsor the race) where you stand in as the I. Of course I did that, because it was a giant dick, just calling to me….but my friend hasn’t sent me that picture yet.

Pre-Race: Half

I spent the night before anxiously refreshing the weather. It was on the cusp of me needing long sleeves, and while I had worn long sleeves during the 5K, I got a tad overheated at the end, so I finally decided to go with short sleeves. I do a really good job over-hydrating the weeks before a race, so I got up four times in the middle of the night, otherwise though, it was a restful night. I take the busway into town, I don’t want to deal with traffic, so head to the park ‘n ride and catch the 5:00 bus.

Pre-Race: Super Secret Subway

Okay guys, here’s the thing: I’m a closet public transportation nerd. Like, big time. When I used to work in the Hill District, I would take the busway into town then walk up, sometimes cutting through the Steel Plaza subway station if I had gone to the gym. I’m still looking into it, but from what I can tell, at least ten years ago (although probably longer), the subway connector between Penn Station (at the end of the busway) and Steel Plaza was shut down, cutting off direct access to the busway from the subway. They took out the track allowing cars to loop around, but left the rest. Well, for race weekend, THEY OPENED IT BACK UP! One-day, special edition, never before have I ridden, hidden subway track! Here’s a map in case you were interested. It’s okay, you can skip ahead to the next section, I’m going to continue to nerd out for a bit here.

So I get off the bus and head over. I’m the only one. It’s not even the way I’m going, I just want to say that I rode it. It was glorious, and really, really short, but totally worth it. Spoiler: I rode it again that afternoon after the race!

Because the Frontrunners had over 20 members running on Sunday, we were part of the Running Club Rally, so I got to head to the SCRR lounge, have some fruit and use the bathroom, all while looking around awkwardly for someone I knew.

Race: Half

I joined some friends in Corral D, which honestly, was a great decision, I wanted to try to stick with a 10:30 pacer. We got started late (compared to previous years, I was told) and didn’t cross the start line until about 7:45, but I did hear some Justin Timberlake and Lady Gaga as we waited, so that was good. During the first mile or two actually was able to see both /u/karmicbias and /u/miikermb which was so awesome! My friend was amazed I had actually met people from Reddit in real life, she thought that was just an urban legend that never actually happens!

My goal was to just enjoy my first half and have fun. A good friend stuck with me, and we kept each other motivated and entertained. I’m kind of a goof-ball and play off the crowd, so I spent 13 miles cheering on spectators and complimenting their signs and hats. A few times, other runners commented that they wanted to stick with us for the entertainment value, and we put in plugs for other races we run together.

We stopped so she could use the bathroom once, and between the wait, and my legs tightening up, we lost a bit of time, but I’m taking that as it will be easier for me to get a new PR the next time I run a half!

The crowd support was great, although there were certainly stretches where it was sparse, but that was to be expected. South Side was a lot of fun, as was the polka band in the West End. The crowd at Station Square was pretty awesome as well.

The big hill for the half course is the Birmingham Bridge, which I’ve run enough times that I was prepared for it. Although by then, the sun was out in full force and it had warmed up a bit into the 50’s, and it affected quite a few. After that, there was a small hill into Uptown, which was where I failed pretty hard during a training run, so even though I slowed down, I made it without stopping, which was huge for me.

Coming down the last mile, through downtown was amazing. I had one earbud in for the race, just for some music for the quiet periods, but as we passed The Paint Bucket, I tucked it away, taking in the screaming crowd. We took a left onto Grant and then the right onto the Boulevard towards the finish line. As we were coming down Grant, the crowds were packed, and I yelled out “Pittsburgh, show me some love!” getting them riled up even more and getting quite a few high fives out of the deal, so it was a win-win!

All in all, I cheesed for the camera quite a bit, ran a solid, consistent race and had an absolute blast doing it!

Best sign: Run like United needs your seat

Race Day Bingo boxes checked: Happy cop, angry cop, happy EMT, bored EMT, barefoot runner, Vibram 5-fingers runner, running in costume, over-prepared guy (about 17 GUs on his belt), under-prepared runner (walking in jeans and a heavy rain coat less than a mile in), and somehow: runner reading a book. That one hurts a lot, like I’m going to get an aneurysm if I keep thinking about the how and the why.

Post-Race: Half

Collected all the food and things. While we had bags to collect the water and chips and fruit and Smiley Cookies, they were the last things we got, which was dumb. Should have been medal, heat sheet, bag then the rest, hopefully that is changed for next year.

Met up with friends, helped them find their gear check bags, got my Steel Challenge medal from one of my favorite P3R employees (and promised to volunteer at the Triathalon again this year) and then headed to the hospitality tent as another reward for the Running Club Rally. The Frontrunners took a group photo with the PR bell and then we all headed home our separate ways. I traveled via the T back to the busway with a fellow club member, and we rode the special edition connector again! This time, we paid special attention to the sparks the track was throwing off. I think it needs some more maintenance if it’s going to be in regular rotation again.

What’s next?

It was a great weekend, one that I look forward to every year. I love the celebration of our personal achievements and the hard work we all put into ourselves paying off in such a fun way that brings the whole city together.

My feet are toughening up too, only had problems with one toe, but the nail doesn’t even look like it will fall off. My big goals are to further work on my nutrition and I desperately need to improve the hours of sleep I get each night. After a week off, I’d like to keep building my base, and maybe even add in a fifth day of running, but I’m not sure about that yet, but looking at my schedule, if I keep doing the four mile runs with the Frontrunners Saturday mornings, I could move my long run to Sundays, giving me five days a week. I also want to switch up my cross-training (and add in more stretching yoga) and strength training days, just to improve a little bit more in those areas as well, but I’m taking it all one thing at a time.

I’m eyeing the Greensburg Half in the fall, but they don’t have a date for that yet, and there’s a few small races coming up that I’ll be doing (Rainbow Dash, Great Race, Stride for Pride, Mario Lemieux, plus a couple virtuals for Zombies, Run and Beat the Blerch). My pacer friend gave me his old GPS watch (a Forerunner 10) so I can use that to help me with speed work going forward.

As I mentioned before, one of the reasons I run is that it helps me manage my depression. I work through things and it helps me make connections, as well as improve my mood. My long runs were perfect for that, I would figure things out and really see a considerable improvement in my mood, as well as solutions to problems I was facing. Races do not provide me the time to think like that. I worked at a camp for 11 years, and I used all that experience to make an ass out of myself for 13.1 miles to entertain those around me. I loved every second of that, but that was for others, not for me.

I need to remember that I do need to race, to mark my improvements, but also as a way to give back, just a little. But I need to go into it with the mindset that I’m not going to have any mental revelations, that way, I can just enjoy it for what it is. After the race, lots of people told me how proud they were of me and that was amazing (although a bit uncomfortable, since I hate having the spotlight on myself), but I tried to take it all in. Hopefully that’s a lesson I can better learn with each race.



Short update, let’s see what we have today.

Sometimes North Korea makes shit up to amaze its populace.  This one may take the cake though: they have “found” a unicorn lair.

The Advocate ranked Pittsburgh as the 15th gayest city in America.

Kansas City is getting a new 17-story waterslide.  Yeah, not happening:

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=SdKI6WS7ghE

The cast of Orange is the New Black do an awesome photoshoot for Elle magazine.

The Manliest (Gay) stuff on the planet.  Great list from the Good Men Project.

That’s it for now, have a great one!



Short update today.  First up, the big news here in Pittsburgh is Luke v. UPMC.  Ginny talks about it, and you should give it a read.

Sounds like something I came up with: replacing guns with thumbs up.

Chiptole has cancelled their sponsorship of a Scouting event in Utah because, you guessed it: the BSA discriminates against children.

And in a week, the arguments will take place at the Supreme Court against Prop 8 and DOMA.  It’s a big deal, and to help support it, a young man wrote a letter to Chief Justice Roberts, who has adoptive children:

That’s it for now, have a great one!



Alright, let’s see what we have today (lots of video):

First up, it’s an overused song, but it is the encore to the musical American Idiot, and is a great arrangement:

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=t72DuGpK1oM

My favorite bit about the entire horse meat scandal?  Denny’s wouldn’t deny that they served horse meat.

For those who like Sriracha, how about in your beer?  I”ll pass.

Thanks to Josh for finding this high adventure urinal:

I may have posted this before, but it is a beautiful episode, and timely, since I just read Hyrule Historia.

This is a little trippy, but I love it:

Woy posted this to twitter, and although it’s now a bit sad, it’s a great sign:

As a reminder, the ACLU defends free speech.  Even if it’s speech they don’t agree with.  That’s kind of their job and why I support them so much.

Lots of nerdy fun in this one:

The aptly named, Is Nate Silver a Witch (.com)  Probably, by the way.

NFL Quarterbacks and their Muppet counterparts.

I enjoyed this short TED video:

Alright, that’s it for today, have a great one!



Alright, a larger update today, let’s see what we have today.

First up, today is the 25th Anniversary of The Princess Bride.  Tor has a great article about some little known facts.

J.K. Rowling may publish a new Harry Potter book, or go back and do “Director’s Cuts” of the series.

The best word ever?  Probably not, but a cool bracket:

Tuesday, October 9 on the CW.  Watch Dr. Horrible’s Sing A Long Blog.  And check out the promo.

Also from the Whedonverse, season 6 of the guild starts in a week:

I somehow got to the mobile site, but check out the new Rock the Vote, from Funny or Die.

PittGirl does a cool article about Pittsburgh clubs.  Check it out!

Copyranter also has some good ads for when you’re having a bad day:

And today’s politics news: Why voter ID is really voter suppression, but since Republicans in Florida are committing it, we should go police it.

This is awesome, and can be done with any magazine, presumably.

That’s it for now, have a great one!



Let’s see what I have today.  First up, a beautiful time-lapse project of Pittsburgh:

IGN has a great article: Why Video Games Matter.

I missed this when it debuted, Harry Potter, 10 years later:

Wired has a cool article up about children’s exploration in Pittsburgh.  Check it out.

And lastly, I don’t watch it very often, but I like it when I do, here’s a fan-made opening of 30 Rock:



Been a while, and I have a lot to share, so let’s get going.  First up, this has been floating around, and it’s been overdone, but this time, it’s at my alma mater:

Fun fact, the Steelers are the only football team to have a training camp day for those with special needs.  Shame on all the other teams!

After years of waiting, and hunting for a copy that wouldn’t put me in the poor house, The 50 Year Sword is being reprinted in America and the cover was just revealed in io9:

I’m really hoping that Yinztagram comes to Android.  I would totally add Rick Sebak to just about every picture ever.

Here are some awe-inspiring (in a bad way) of the interior of Monsour Medical Building, which I pass all the time going to SVC.

This is amusing:

An artist has used thousands of CDs to create amazing works of art.  Makes my coathanger and AOL CD suncatchers look like child’s play…since they were.

This is a really cool table, although I don’t know how much it costs, but I’m guessing it’s really expensive.

Also amusing:

Act Classy took the ruined Jesus Fresco and showed his whole life.  Funny, because all we can do is laugh about the situation.

Click here to listen to the sound of a star dying.  Seriously.

A great riff on Warhol’s famous quote:

I’ve always loved utensil-less cooking while camping, this looks really awesome.  It’s totally for breakfast.

That’s it for now, but I’ll be back soon with more!



Quick update for everyone, let’s see what we have today.

First up, this book should never be made into a movie (I also honestly don’t think it could be), but here’s an awesome opening credits sequence for House of Leaves:

Well this isn’t good.  Apparently artificial butter flavoring may also cause Alzheimer’s (as well as various types of cancer)

If this comes to Pittsburgh, I’ll totally do this with a team: The Dare Theory.

Here’s a good run-down of all the Instagram filters, for your easy reference.

Awesome video of Pittsburgh:

Here’s an awesome interview with Wigle Whiskey.  One of these days I’ll try it out, although I know nothing about whiskey.

IGN has a great article about why video games matter, check it out:

My theory is that those of us that didn’t grow out of games are the people that didn’t lose that spark of imagination. We’re wowed by deep space and ocean depths andunexplored caves. We want to believe that the real world still has some magic.

That’s it for now, have a great one!



Quick second update for everyone, let’s see what we have.

First up, two quick updates to my first valentine’s post.  If you really love someone give them roses.  Made of bacon:

Or of course, there is this Zombie valentine.  I love it!

This is floating around, and I love it. There are a couple things I would have added, and a bit of the editing is weird towards the end, but I love it:

The ongoing debate over women’s reproductive health is abhorrent.  A snipped I found from Maddow:

The Bishops’ position, which the Republicans have now adopted as their own, is that religious leaders have the right to override that decision, even though it will affect employees who have no moral or religious qualms about birth control. Writing in Newsweek, Andrew Sullivan captured the Bishops’ thinking perfectly: “Catholic doctrine should, according to the bishops’ spokesman, also apply to non-Catholics.” […]

[T]he principle seems pretty clear to me. The Bishops want a veto over public policy. And the Republicans want to give it to them.

Go read the whole thing here, and check out a cool post at Slog about the crazies that are ruining the Republican Party (and yes, I do wish that there was actually a rational conservative party.  In order to find the best solutions to our problems, we need to have good, actual debate, and we need ideas from all parts of the spectrum.  However, the reactionary Republicans that have taken over the conservative side of the spectrum are preventing that rational discussion).

And to cleanse the palate, the trailer for Abraham Lincoln: Vampire Hunter: 

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=aPxdjECyPmw

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