Thursday, September 23, 2004

"God would not say THAT!" -Ralph Richardson

Watched the movie Time Bandits this week.

Seeing as how I pretty much memorized Life of Brian when I was 13, it seemed weird that I had never seen it. When I was 13, I would have laughed at this movie until milk ran out my nose, and I was nostalgic for finding things that funny.

Now, ruined by 5 years of seminary, I must say I was a little distracted by the theology. I dont want to take this really silly movie more seriously than it needs to be, and I truly understand about satire and irony. That said, it makes me sad that in churches we are always talking uphill against the image that most people seem to have of that old white banker God guy in the three piece suit. No matter how often we invoke Luke 13, no matter how often we remind folks that God comes to us in many ways and has infinite faces, no matter how nicely those folks nod and agree that's a good idea - they still have that picture of Ralph Richardson in their heads.

Maybe it's from the church they grew up in. But probably it's from when they were 13, and watched Time Bandits every day.

Everything Jen Lemen Says Rocks

Read for yourself.

Wednesday, September 22, 2004

What today was like

Never never never start a new job, pack to move, and start your son in day care in the same week. Here's what I mean. Today I:

1. Dropped Eli at daycare. Waited for the second day for the wails and drama which were NOT forthcoming. So I felt sad that he was so non chalant about the the whole thing, then guilty for feeling sad, then angry for feeling guilty....It was not a helpful emotional loop with which to start the day.

2. Was almost in two separate horrible accidents. I was driving around in the rain on the lovely yet mind boggling streets of the neighborhood where I'm working, looking for a parishoner's house by watching the street names, the house numbers and the cute little directory that has everyone's name in it and NOT the road itself. Made a couple of u-turns that would have been disasters if the good people behind me had not been driving very carefully.

3. Went to my friend's storage unit to pick up the computer boxes and got the wrong ones so now we have to go back again and pick up the right ones. Like I dont have ENOUGH to do. And until Friday when I can do it, the boxes are just hulking in the living room, making innuendos, calling me names and blowing raspberries behind my back.

4. Had to take the car to the shop because it's making that teeth-on-edge metal grinding sound when I apply the brakes. Which my friend could hear too, when we were driving around on the useless box errand, which meant that I could no longer ignore it in the hopes that it would go away. After Eli and I dropped the car off, we stopped at a little crepe shop for a snack and since we were the only ones in the place I got talking to the guy who worked there.

"So you're moving huh? Pack your TV yet?"
"We dont have a TV."
"Oh, too bad because one of the girls who comes here is going to be on TV tonight."
"In what?"
"The Bachelor. She's one of the Bachlorettes. Alma."

Then he went on to show me another customer's CD that she (the singer, not Alma) had autographed. He's going to hang up the CD case and also a signed headshot of Alma in his restaurant. I offered to bring him my picture, since I'm a famous associate pastor in Magnolia, but he didn't go for it for some reason.

I have nothing original to say about the nature of fame, and I gotta admit I'm as intrigued by Roy's dramatic recovery from the lion attack as any housewife in America, but I will say that sometimes I can see right through the very thin veil that separates the regular folks from the famous ones and it's hard not to find our whole culture pretty absurd when that happens.

4. Tried to pack a few boxes. Got a big one ready for Goodwill that had some stuff from kitchen cupboards in it including things I had never seen like the cookbook entitled "A Taste of Tradition: A Collection of Recipes from the Valley View Women's Club." WHAT???

5. Picked a fight with Jeff when he came home from work which ended in giggles (mine) when he actually said, "I just dont understand your relationship with lentils at all."

There is nothing left to do now but read a psalm and go to bed. And I thank God for that.

Monday, September 13, 2004

Working Mother

Well, I started a new job today.

Which is kind of great, but the distractions are many. Elijah was down the hall it the nursery and I kept sneaking peaks through the little square window until he caught me. Then he wailed so I went in for a little snuggle. He actually did way better than I thought I would but this nursery is not gonna work out - in the hierarchy of childcare, it's sort of on the low-ish end. Drop-in care. So no lunch, no outside time, no real structure, different kids every time, and only 8 hours a week. Which is not really gonna work.

So now I'm trying to decide if I should:
1. Wait until the end of the week to see if a great house daycare we've heard of will work out. OR
2. Start right away looking for something else tomorrow.

See, if I wasnt working, I'd have lots of time for this decision making, but since I am working which is why I have to make this decision, my time must be spent thinking about other thing than this decision that I have to make because I'm working.

I remembered that question I always have about how working people get anything else DONE as I was trying to do a load of laundry and take out the recycling between bites of pizza.

Sunday, September 12, 2004

Flying objects

A couple of days ago I was driving up Greenlake Way (with my car window rolled down about 4-6 inches) when something flew through the window and smacked me on the face. Later I found a tiny piece of asphalt in that well between the seats where the parking brake handle is.

About 9:30 tonight I was walking with my pal Rachel on a route we often take. "Let's turn here," I suggested, "this is a nice street to walk on." A few steps later a car drove by and a paper cup filled with water and ice came flying out. It only splashed me, but it hit Rachel. Neither of us had paid particular attention to the car as it approached, so we both screamed and jumped.

I cant remember being hit with anything unexpected flying through the air since the 1985 when boys followed us home in cars after East High School's Freshman Orientation and pelted my friend and I with eggs. That day we were pretty clear about their motives. But now twice in one week, I've been struck and then left bewildered.

The asphalt was a fluke, I suppose, something about the way the tire of the Honda spit that little rock up into the air shot it right through the window. The cup was POSSIBLY an accident, we were in shadow on a fairly dark street. But if it WAS an accident, what are the odds of that? And if it was an assault, then the annonimity of it is sort of baffling - the passengers didn't shout or laugh or squeal away. Just a silent, soggy cup right on target, and then the the car continuing serenely up the dark street.

I'm hopeful this kind of thing doesn't happen in threes. The rock was tiny, the cup maybe 20x larger. If something even larger is headed my way, it would have to be somewhere between the size of Hansa and a mid-sized Craftsman style home. If this is a sign of some kind, I'm hoping to get the message in a gentler way.