Saturday, October 28, 2006
W-Five did an exposé on a "Christian" cult in Hamilton. As I watching, I thought I saw a familiar face in the congregation. Sure enough, one of my high school friends is caught up in this movement that has convinced her to cut all ties with her family (to the point of telling her younger siblings that she will never see them again).
The "pastor" has twisted the word of God to isolate a congregation of young adults into thinking that not being of the world means turning your back on everyone outside of their group. That leaving is the equivalent of leading others astray, and that it would be better that they die than influence others to follow them leaving. The entire thing was completely disturbing.
It's strange how it took a familiar face to move me, as if these people weren't real until they were actually connected to me. I babysat this friend's younger siblings; her parents are incredible godly individuals.
I'm usually pretty skeptical of secular (esp. television) perspectives on evangelical movements. I saw a program that made Ron Luce look a little insane. But I genuinely believe something very dangerous is going on.
If you read the linked article, you may recognize the name of my friend. Even if you don't, pray. This does not ring true of who God is. And I'm scared for her.
Tuesday, October 24, 2006
Random string of thoughts for your reading (or skimming) pleasure.
Once upon a time, there was a girl with an umbrella problem. She tried desperately to be faithful to her umbrellas, but time and time again, her umbrellas would fail her. They would break; they would disappear. Determined to not be the source of discord in her relationships with umbrellas, when she met one she liked recently, she committed herself immediately to a one-year live-in experience with it. Apparently, the umbrella was overwhelmed by such an arrangement, and after a few short months, unraveled. If ever she experiences a one-year anniversary with an umbrella, she will invite her friends over to celebrate, with a particularly sentimental song being serenaded by a Mr. Gene Kelly in the background.
When it rains…
On my way to church on Sunday, a guy on the subway started talking to me. I take that back. He started talking at me. He wouldn’t stop. It was obvious that the rambling was going to end with him asking me out, but I had a suspicion he might run out of air first. A very truncated version:
Him: Hello. Quite the day, huh? It just keeps raining. At least you have an umbrella. You’ll all over that. Not a problem, huh? But it’s a good weekend. My name’s Malcolm, by the way. What’s yours? (I mutter the truth. I can’t lie on the spot). That's such a pretty name. It really is. What did you do this weekend? Anything special? (I believe I utter a “Not really.”) Oh, that’s too bad. You really should. So….
At this point, I see my brother waiting for me. We go to church together most Sundays. I wave a little too enthusiastically and Malcolm is gone. I mean, utterly and completely out of my life forever. He didn’t know if I was single when he started (good assumption though), nor did he know who Joel was (bad assumption there), but I guess the presence of another guy was enough to drive him away.
- Why do only strangers flirt with me? I tend to get asked out solely by men who don’t know me. In fact, a semi-friend once said to me (while stroking my perm in a bar, but let’s not go there) that if he didn’t know me, he’d ask me out. Clearly, I must be greatly lacking in the personality department.
- In high school, around Valentine’s Day, candygrams were all the rage. And every year, I got nadda. In my senior year, the selected candy was Smarties (also my personal drug of choice). I was sent a candygram. It was from Christian Bale. Fake boyfriends rock.
Yeah, they exist. My friends discovered them online when we were Googling Christian Bale back in the day. I’ve spent many a sleepover singing along to Newsies, swooning over Little Women and tapping my feet to Swing Kids. He is the reason for my nine-year range (It’s really a one-way only thing. I’m not into 14 year olds).
Finally, it’s decent-movie time at the theatres. After loving The Departed last week, I was pleasantly entertained by The Prestige this weekend. I happen to be a pretty big Christopher Nolan fan (and we all know how I feel about Mr. Bale), and while the film reached nowhere near the genius of Memento, it had plenty of twists and turns to keep me captivated. Some thoughts (without giving away any of the plot):
- Christian Bale was brilliant. And complex. It was nice to see real within-the-character conflict without any forced tears or that constipated look that actors tend to give when they want us to see their inner pain.
- Scarlett Johansson is fading into her own hype. She went from dynamic actress to sultry, pouty, corseted wallpaper. Piper Perabo was far better (and prettier).
- Sometimes, filmmakers don’t give an audience enough credit. Some things (including a major plot twist) were explained to death. We get it. I got it twenty minutes before they told me what to get.
- The British actress (Rebecca Hall) rocked. All the other women were Americans with accent coaches.
- Go see it. It’s fun. And it has the whole Nolan-screwing-with-time-while-screwing-with-your-mind element you love. Or should love if you don’t.
I made chicken parmesan and an oven omelet this weekend. My new calling is housewife (I believe the ladies on SNL would call it “a stay-at-home non-mom”). I just need a husband and a house.
Enjoy your Tuesday.
Monday, October 16, 2006
Since I spent the past week in various states of illness, I didn’t bother to blog. I barely bothered to breathe, in fact, as it was such an effort. For those who care, I am now happily almost-healthy and quite easily made it through a 10-hour workday today.
I approached this past grossness of being a little differently than I would under normal-Nadine circumstances. I decided to stop needing to be in control and all organized and put together and just accept a temporary life of congestion and weariness. I rented movies. I went to the grocery store in *gasp* sweats and no makeup. I schlepped around my apartment and didn’t even consider cleaning the bathroom (my weekly weekend ritual). And so, despite the fact that I had to cancel an afternoon with Meredith (I’ll make it up, I promise), and that Schindler’s List was possessed and kept skipping huge scenes (Blockbuster will make it up to me, I’ll make sure of it), I managed to appreciate my time being out of commission.
The heat is on in my apartment. By “heat” I mean “sauna.” I actually woke up in the middle of the night with sweaty kneepits (the area behind the knee. I guess it would be “legpits” if you want to be all technical). The temperate situation is strange here. It’s flannel in the summer, tank tops in the winter. Because of the sweltering conditions, I made myself leave yesterday. Still slightly stuffed and out of it, I made it to church (which was a little stranger than usual: the pastor just read the first three chapters of Ephesians. No commentary whatsoever), and then headed to the movies with Joel.
Okay, people. Go see The Departed. It’s the best drama of the year so far. Seriously. And if you hate Leonardo DiCaprio (as most guys do, which is clearly a sign of massive insecurity), you’ll be blown away by how brilliant he can actually be. He and Scorsese make a pretty phenomenal team (see Gangs of
Tuesday, October 10, 2006
Of all days, today had to be the crazy we’re-all-gonna-die day on the Danforth line.
I went to bed at 8pm last night. You’d think such a move would allow me to wake up refreshed. No such luck. Instead, I slept in 45-minute segments, tossing and turning and reaching for the Kleenex box all night long.
I spent the day barely breathing, sneezing often. Work was crazy/busy. Did I mention I couldn’t breathe?
I left after 9 hours. The weatherman (with whom I have a love/hate relationship) warned me earlier that it’s going to rain every day this week after today, so despite my congestion, I headed to the grocery store.
It took me two hours longer than usual to get to Food Basics (cheese is cheap this week and nothing was going to stop me). Apparently, someone left a briefcase on the platform of the Donlands station (my station). Of course, all briefcases are packed with explosives, and so five stations were shut down (two on either side of it), choppers flew overhead, and shuttle buses tries to shuffle 7000 commuters through Greektown. Yeah, it sucked.
By the time I got to the grocery store, it was dark and cold and the food was all picked over. I bought too much for my weak little arms to slug all the way home (I’m sick, remember?), but I pretended to be a trooper and managed to not make too many faces as the bags cut into my hands.
I know this sounds whiny. And I hate sounding whiny. And I really did have a pretty great weekend. I just didn’t sleep much, and now I’m suffering the consequences of the lack of zzz’s.
So here’s what I’m thankful for (in no order and by no means conclusive):
- Fresh produce in my fridge
- An awesome family (immediate and extended)
- Pumpkin pie
- Stephanie letting me sleep on her floor (the basement is evil)
- Dinner at the adult table (finally!)
- A full workday
- Slippers and hot tea
- Sunshine at an outdoor wedding
- My scarf and gloves at an outdoor wedding
- Late-night conversations when I should be sleeping
- Walks in the woods with my grandparents
- Discounted Lego
I’m off to bed now. If I can sleep. I’m also thankful for my bed. And my Bible. And Jesus. And I happen to be very thankful for that time at the end of the day that I spend sitting in bed, reading my Bible and talking to Jesus. It’s a pretty great combo. I suggest you all try it.