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Quips and Quiddities

What the devil have they to do with me?

May 11th, 2006

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Marriage Protection Amendment. Oh, my God. What is going on?

The amendment coming up before the Senate, and, if it passes, the House, would bring a constitutional marriage amendment before the people. The amendment would read,"Marriage in the United States shall consist only of the union of a man and a woman." It also says, "Neither this Constitution, nor the constitution of any State, shall be construed to require that marriage or the legal incidents thereof be conferred upon any union other than the union of a man and a woman."

I personally will suffer if this bill passes. I personally will be unable to legally marry my beloved. I personally will be hurt and degraded by this unfair, bigoted, mean-spirited bill.

I know this is my LiveJournal and not my political stump. But I am asking you, my friends, to stand up for me. Please support me in this, as you have supported me through so many things. Call your senators and representatives. Tell them to vote, and to vote no. Mike DeWine's number is (202) 224-2315. George Voinovich's number is (202) 224-3353. In that call you should say who you are, where you live, and why you believe this bill is wrong. You can also just say that you believe it's wrong, without giving details. You could also write to your senators at:

DeWine, Mike
140 RUSSELL SENATE OFFICE BUILDING
WASHINGTON DC 20510

Again, (202) 224-2315.

Voinovich, George V.
524 HART SENATE OFFICE BUILDING
WASHINGTON DC 20510

Again, (202) 224-3353.

They both voted for the Marriage Protection Amendment in 2004. Mike DeWine is a co-sponsor of this bill; he has joined 29 other senators. He is on the Senate Judiciary Committee, which is currently considering the bill, and will no doubt vote for it's being considered bu the full Senate. They will both vote for it again, if you don't tell them not to. All of their fearful, hate-filled constituents have been calling them and telling them to vote for it; please let them know there is another side. If they don't hear your voice, they have no way of knowing that Ohioans don't all support this unfair, immoral bill.

If you do write, you should make it a new letter, rather than a form. Form letters count for less in their equations than personal communications. Letters count for more than phone calls, and phone calls count for more than e-mails. The vote is the week of June 5. It will take you less than five minutes to call; maybe twenty to write. I have called my senators and seriously, they just want your zip code and a yes or no.

I live in Chicago. We are a blue state. My senators won't vote for this bill. I can do nothing to protect myself and my girlfriend. You can.

May 1st, 2006

I am moving! Comcast is slow on the reconnect, so I will be without an Internet hookup till the week of May 8. You should call me if you want to talk before then. But you should call on the weekend or after 9 my time.

April 17th, 2006

Weddings:

Hurray! I worked my first wedding last weekend. Well, I suppose technically it wasn't a wedding; it was a commitment ceremony. Although we now have a policy of requiring that a UU minister officiate or co-officiate at all weddings and commitment ceremonies at our church, this one was two Mennonite boys.

That's right, Mennonite. Urban, gay Mennonites. It had not occurred to me that there would be a bunch of urban Mennonites, but there are! I love this city. I am constantly being surprised by the diversity of people here. The other day I found out that one of Krista's students, Nimbus Shrestha, is Nepalese. I had wondered what ethnicity a name like that was, and now we know. Nepalese!

Anyway, these kids having the wedding were extremely hip. Mohawks, green hair, all that; I felt distinctly square. (Can I say hip? Can I say square? Sure I can.) Many of them were friends from Goshen College, an Anabaptist-Mennonite school in Indiana. A lot of them were music majors, and then some of their families were there, etc. etc.

I don't know if it was because they were music majors, or just because their church has a rich musical tradition, but the music was extremely good. They had printed hymns in their order of service, and everyone seemed to know them. They sang each hymn in perfect congregational four-part harmony, even though they people had never all sung together before. It was really powerful.

As they were mingling in the loft after the service, the caterer came over to me and asked, “Are they waiting for a blessing over the food?”
“I don't know. Are they? Why do you ask?”
“Because no one has touched the food.”
“Well, let me ask.” I found one groom, who was talking to their pastor, and asked him.
“I don't know. Are they?” he asked.
“I don't know. They might be,” said their pastor. “I don't know. Tell you what, I'll go upstairs and scope it out, and if I should I'll just do one.”
She went upstairs and found the other groom and asked him.
“I don't know. Are they?”
“I don't know,” she said. “Should we say one?”
“We could,” he said. “Should we maybe sing one?”
“Sure,” she said, and they started to sing. Within four beats the entire room of people had stopped talking and joined them. The flawless harmony floated up and over the room, covering everyone. Afterward there was a moment of peace and quiet, that heartbeat after a song when everyone pauses to breathe. That moment was perfect.

I have never heard anything like this. Spontaneous, effortless music that everyone knows and everyone joins. A grace that fills everyone up to the top. I feel so privileged to have heard it, even once.

April 15th, 2006

So there.

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I am constantly trying to find a job. Right? I write cover letters, I mess with my resume, every so often I go on interviews. One of those interviews really stank. I got all dressed up in my suit, headed out the door, got all the way to the train and realized I ddin't have my portfolio. It was too late to go back for it, so I went to the interview sans portfolio. I was also sans umbrella, which was a mistake. It rained.

The first part of the interview was with the editor I'd be working with, and it was fine. He was nice, etc. Then the editorial assistant (and fact checker) that I'd be replacing came in, and she was awful. She said, "Wow, it's so great to be interviewing instead of being the interviewee. Now I get to ask all kinds of crazy questions and you just have to be polite about it. That's great." She actually said this. In words. Out of her mouth they came.

"Let's see, boring boring boring, tell you what. I'll tell you the question I was always afraid I'd be asked. How many ping-pong balls can fit in a Volkswagen Bug?"

I smiled. I brushed it off. She made some smartass remark about how much that question stank. I agreed. She asked it again.

"Well," I said, "That's actually a very complicated question."

"What you'd do," she said, "Is you'd call up VW and ask them what the inside volume of a Bug is, and then you'd get the volume of a ping-pong ball, and then you'd just divide."

I stared at her. In my head was "The hell you would," and "Fancy that," and all sorts of conflicting responses and what came out of my mouth was "Uh huh." More of an affirmative "uh huh" than a negative "uh-uh." Not quite agreeing with her, but not quite saying "You're awful and you're ignorant, how nice for you."

In the elevator on the way out I thought, "That really wouldn't work. It really wouldn't work at all. That would tell you how many times the volume of a ping-pong ball would fit inside the volume of a Bug, but ping-pong balls aren't a liquid. They take up space, and then there's the space around them full of air. You'd have to call a mathematician to get the equation for spheres in a--well, and it wouldn't be a cube, either, it'd be oddly shaped. You probably couldn't get a VW engineer to release the plans for a Bug so you could use them, you'd just have to go measure it. Maybe you could use a model Bug if you had a very good model and some extremely small BBs. Maybe."

It was too late. But do you know what I came across on the Web today?

The actual answer! (To a similar, though not identical, question.)

http://www.cockeyed.com/inside/trailblazer/trailblazer.html

I am right! And she was wrong. So there.

April 13th, 2006

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What to do, what to do, what to do.

I've been looking around on Metromix.com for a fun thing to do tomorrow night. Read more...Collapse )

three strikes you're out

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Oh, Wrigleyville.

I live in Wrigleyville! Baseball season just started! Woo hoo! Read more...Collapse )

April 7th, 2006

owooooooo

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I have decided. The next time I'm around for the beginning of a church group, we're going to call it ABOUUWCTOAN. A Boo Ook Two An. A Bunch Of Unitarian Universalists Who Can't Think Of A Name.

April 6th, 2006

Why did my friends page just italicize?

April 5th, 2006

So. I have yet another church question.

I'm thinking about gay rights, lately, because our church is planning to march in the Pride Parade. I'm one of the people organizing it, and will be marching myself as well as helping out with the service beforehand. This is why I asked the other day for your best pride cheers. I'm still thinking about that and will post a list of the final product when it's done. Thanks so much for your help!

And I need it again. What do you think about gay rights? What do you think are the important issues facing gay America today? What do you yourself think about gay rights? Does it ever come up in your daily life? How do you think we ought to respond to anti-gay bigotry? Arrgh.

See, last year the Pride sermon was great. Megan Dalby talked about the history of Pride Weekend, and the Stonewall Riots, and Harvey Milk. She finished by saying "Come out, come out, wherever you are." It was pretty awesome.

But we can't say that this year. We need to say something different, that will still get people to march in the Parade, and get them feeling energized and strong about gay rights, and bring them to a place of spiritual transformation, and all that. And I have no idea how to do that. What do you guys think?

March 22nd, 2006

Radical Cheers

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Hey all,

My church, Second Unitarian in Chicago, is planning to march in our Pride Parade this summer. I'm loooking for chants or cheers that we can do as we march. Last year we said "What do we want?/GAY MARRIAGE!When do we want it?/NOW!" and that was great, but we need more. I got really tired of that one. Do you guys know of, or can you think of, any good chants we could use?

I've been looking at a bunch of radical cheerleading sites, and their cheers are okay, but thecy're not really a good fit for the church. We need something that's not political on any cause but queer pride, and that doesn't knock anyone or put them down. We need to say what we are, not what we're not. And the language needs to be accessible. So far, all I can think of is: "2, 4, 6, 8, liberal religion is really great," which is sort of okay but not that cool. None of our words rhyme well, and they're all so long and clunky.

Do you guys have any ideas?

--Quinn
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