It’s been so long that I can’t remember what I usually call these posts.

Failure. Utter failure. I just don’t ever feel like blogging after a day at work.

And weekends? Forget it.

I do Tweet. The Friendly Atheist favorited one of my tweets today. Speaking of, Jessica’s coughing says it all about tax laws and churches on this post from the F.A. page.

Don’t you just love when women tell victims of sexual assault that it’s not their fault, but basically it is? Because after all, if women would just stay at home all the time no one would sexually assault them… Oh, wait. Haven’t I heard of many cases in which women are assaulted and/or raped in their own homes? Why yes, I have.  And just for the record, as Turley aptly puts it, courtrooms are not advice columns.

“Judges increasingly seem to yield to the desire to use their courtrooms to dispense their own forms of improvised justice or homegrown advice.”

The Culture War Reporters had a piece today on mourning celebrities versus mourning loved ones. It is well-written and touching, perhaps more so if you’ve ever lost a loved one to Alzheimer’s.

Freedom of speech can apparently be abused if you use it to say something against religion or that hurts religious peoples’ feelings. *sigh*

I really appreciate this post on Turley’s blog about torture.

Fighting for change – I really love the blog Inspirational Freethought because of the emphasis on positive things. It’s easy to get burned out, particularly lately as a feminist member of the atheist movement.

Argh. That’s right, that’s about as far as I can express myself about this. It’s just so incredibly frustrating! *Goes back and reads fighting for change post again*

Those 70s movies are oddly unattractive...

The Multifarious Mix Returns (like Batman, but not as cool)

Men’s fashion from Greta Christina’s perspective – I recommend the comments in addition to what she writes. I also want to add a few things: cuff links and in a certain sense men are very lucky. One comment mentions that menswear is basically either formal or casual with little grey area in between while women’s clothing has a huge grey area. Slightly annoying when a man wants to be able to wear a wide variety of clothing at a business casual workplace? Yes. At the same time it’s extremely liberating. Every time I get dressed for work I have to think about whether or not it’s appropriate for work. Do I wear a suit? A skirt? Is this shirt dressed up enough even though it is, in all honesty, a t-shirt? Basically, I’m simultaneously envious of how simple it is for men and happy that I get more leeway to “express” myself, if that’s how you wish to put it.

From a comment in the above post I found a tie knot someone created. I thought it was kind of neat. On a side note, I’ve always been slightly envious that men get to wear ties. I know that’s strange, but when a woman wears a tie it’s generally not a wear-to-work outfit. I’m not saying I’d want to wear them on a daily basis, but I like options!

Just an f.y.i there may be missing “s”s on some words. My s key is being uncooperative.


I would have gone to this awesome event, but it’s muggy out.

I’d love to look through this list and discover how many of the books I’ve read, but I’m not clicking “next” 100 times on that website. -_- Also, I respect authors and all, but I don’t think they’re the best ones to ask about the best books of all time. And I hated Things Fall Apart.

I’m tired of the anti-milk people. Yeah, milk isn’t the miracle health-food the dairy lobby wants you to think it is. DUH. When someone selling oranges says they’re the best thing in the world and also convinces the government to say the same thing, do you believe them? I mean, get a sense of skepticism already. By all means if you’re having digestive problems try cutting out dairy products. Do controlled experiments until you figure out what your body doesn’t like – try cutting out dairy, then try cutting out gluten, etc. I love milk, and it has never once made me feel crappy. Coffee, on the other hand, makes me feel like crap if I drink it before 1pm. Milk isn’t evil, and the way we produce milk isn’t any worse than the way we produce meat and other animal products. If that’s your reasoning for giving it up, I expect you to not only go vegetarian, but also to stop eating produce grown on large high-production farms. I’m done ranting. My point is milk isn’t inherently bad.

Huh, I’ve missed sharing my many random opinions and rants with the world. My work life is devoid of such things. Avoiding controversy and all that.

Yay dogs! Having a dog (or, to a lesser extent, a cat) has a positive effect on the health of children.

California may have issues affording the costs of the Affordable Healthcare Act:

To ignore the cost is to be intellectually dishonest.

I know you all love semi-solids. Mushy tarmac, anyone? I’ve actually know that “tarmac” can get mushy and weird for a very long time. I played outside, even on very hot days, a lot as a kid.

Of course the economist is the only reasonable voice in this entire article, and I include the author of the article in that evaluation.

“Yes, it’s important for us to be buying more products that are made in the U.S.,” Moutray said. At the same time, “we have to recognize that we are in a global economy and so need to explore markets outside.”

Trade is an important part of the economy, and good allocation of resources often requires that we accept a lot of stuff cannot reasonably be made in the US.

I definitely expected to share more links with you, but I guess this will have to do!

The Multifarious Mix: June 21, 2012.

Are some drugs worse than others? According to the DEA: drugs bad. All drugs bad! (I think this may have been followed with a grunt and hitting something caveman style). The sane people of the world are wondering why we can’t at least admit that pot generally makes people relax, which is a lot better than the effects of meth, crack, heroine, cocaine, certain painkillers, ecstasy and alcohol.

A friend of mine works for this theater group, and it sounds awesome. I told her to come start a similar group in Minneapolis (it being second only to New York City in live theater per capita).

Schroedinger’s Threat – it’s like the cat, but worse.

Ahh, the information problem. Downgrading of major banks a little overdue.

No Trader Joe’s for Minneapolis this time. I’m more interested in the last sentence of the article:

Trader Joe’s attempted to open a store at 22nd Street and Lyndale Ave. South in 2009, but failed to garner necessary exemptions to bypass a spacing requirement between liquor stores.

I know MN has some stupid liquor laws*, but spacing between liquor stores? Seriously? What do they think is going to happen? Competitive prices? >_<

Interesting NPR blog post on owning music.

Dirtying Up Our Diets: Will the rise of farmer’s markets fight back the rise of auto-immune diseases and allergies? It’s only an op-ed, but it raises interesting questions.

*Note this is coming from someone that doesn’t ever drink alcohol.

The Multifarious Mix: June 13th, 2012

Hug Me! I’m Vaccinated - what a wonderful name for an organization. :D

Caution: Cone Dispenser or Caution Cone Dispenser! The world’ gone mad with warning labels. One of my favorites it the drowning in a bucket warning, even though it’s more reasonable given that buckets do, in fact, hold water and a child might actually crawl into it head first. On another note, at first I thought the cone dispenser in question was indeed an ice cream cone dispenser and the sign was warning that there might be some sort of mess under the dispenser. I quickly realized I was wrong.

On Facebook? You might like‘s page:

We are a collaborative blog with an emphasis on student contribution writing about atheist, agnostic, freethinking, humanist, secular, and skeptical ideas and issues today.

Live in or around the Twin Cities? SkepchickCON is coming up at CONvergence in early July. Check it out, I’m going to be there along with a bunch of Skepchicks and other awesome people.

Dear the internet, this is why you can’t have anything nice

What the? Bullets flying in the south metro? Hard to believe…

Whenever I read news articles like this, I find that the available information is woefully inadequate. I’m not sure if I should blame the reporter or not. A statement from the parents might help a bit. As far as I can tell, it could go either way – maybe the Wheelers were out of line, and maybe Wolfsberg acted inappropriately.

There sure are a lot of things in the news making me angry lately. Example: gender pay discrimination. I know, people like to call it a “gap.” I happen to call it like I see it – gap isn’t descriptive enough.

Here’s a good chaser – a happy medical achievement! Funny when the things we see on medical dramas like Grey’s Anatomy* show up in the news. :D

I especially love the first photo on this post! It’s worth clicking the link just to see it.

Would you like your government to be your nanny? What’s that? You’re an adult and don’t need a nanny to tell you what to eat? Nonsense.

Speaking of New York, there are some pretty evil cops there. Picking up hitchhikers isn’t illegal, but when people do it to carpool across the George Washington Bridge, the cops find reasons to ticket drivers. The deck is stacked against you once you get a ticket – from the cost of missing work to fight it, to the chance you’ll end up with “points” on your license, few people are going to bother to find ludicrous tickets. I thought we were supposed to encourage carpooling?

*I gave up on Grey’s when I found out they killed off Lexie Grey.

The Multifarious Mix: June 11

Healthy cheesecake? *brain breaks* Going to have to try this. Especially since I have a lot of cottage cheese that needs to be used asap.

One reason I love where I live: movies in the park. Almost every single day? I fully intend to make the most of this summer.

I made kimchi the other night. It’s fermenting right now. Will be ready for the fridge tomorrow. I used two recipes to get an idea of exactly what to do. Hopefully it turns out well (and doesn’t taste fishy like the last batch I tried to make).

A post on 101 Books and a subsequent comment by Naomi from the Tea Time Reader inspired me to look up the statistics for my county library. :)

I’m not usually big on the pictures-with-text memes, but I liked this one. This one, too.

I love dogs, and apparently I love dog-related blogs. To try and balance out all the cat-mania that appears on the internet, I’m sharing with you this funny tail-chasing story.

Huh, I never think of gangs when I think of Coon Rapids. I don’t know much about Coon Rapids, though. Except that the name of their city makes it sound a little redneck.

I shudder to think of an impromptu prayer lasting for 15 minutes. And in a bar, no less. I have a hard enough time at holidays when they let the youngest cousin say grace and she goes on and on and on for 5 minutes.

If faith is the only reason you have to live your life, I feel very sorry for you. I have many, many reasons (and none of them has anything to do with the supernatural).

Because handing out Bibles will… um… oh, right, accomplish nothing. Have fun with that! Yay Pride Festival!

“Perverted” penguins? Sounds like some of the penguins were confused (sex with dead penguins, sex with injured penguins). Some just weren’t having heterosexual sex. The sad part is that some crushed or killed baby penguins by trying to have sex with them. Poor penguins. Silly biologist.

Today’s Multifarious Mix: June 9th, 2012

Same type of posts, new name. I thought I’d try out the “Multifarious Mix” as the new title for my “What I’ve Been Reading” posts. Comments are welcome, but try not to be too harsh.

In other news, my posts are probably going to be fewer in the near future. I was just hired for a full-time contract position from now until the end of November (in other words: I got a job).

I’m always a little odd by how many different facets of the abortion discussion actually exist. I say discussion because I’m not so much talking about the debate (pro-choice or pro-life), but rather about the numerous and varied reasons abortion should remain a choice for all patients to be decided on privately. When abortion isn’t an option, the results can be heart-wrenching.

I’m not sure why I never saw this awesome web comic, but I love it. Welcome to science! Thanks for the link, Jigar! I’ve added the Bad Astronomer to my blogroll.

The90sLife on Twitter posted a link to an article featuring the work of Jirka. Photo manipulation to create life-like Disney characters? Awesome. My favorite is Aurora.

Whether it’s taking books away or basketballs, it boils down to the same thing: kids don’t substitute “better” or “safer” things for what was taken away. They switch activities. It’s not, “Oh, you took my basketball? I’ll just use this squishy ball to play a crappy version of HORSE,” it’s, “Oh you took my basketball? I’m going to take up protesting and activism that will annoy the crap out of the adults working at this school.” ;)

Committing to your dog(s).

What do you do when the religious people in your life try to inject religion into your non-religious events? I mean, I was annoyed enough when David Petraeus kindheartedly said, “God bless you,” during my commencement ceremony.*

The Ugly Moose posts yet another funny story. I’m a little awed by people who can consistently make others laugh, especially if it’s in a thoughtful way.

“I believe I explained the American Civil War was in fact lost in 1865. No, the South isn’t going to rise again. Actually I find that really offensive, and I get the impression you might be a racist.”

I still don’t like sesame seeds, so I didn’t really enjoy the spicy cucumber salad I made today.

*As much as it bothered me, he said it in the least condescending manner I’ve ever heard. Like he truly believed he was saying something really wonderful to us. Still bothered me because my graduation ceremony was supposed to be god-free – not by any guarantee, just that they have a separate Baccalaureate ceremony for that stuff.

What I’ve Been Reading: June 6 (Why is “Calling You” by Aqua playing on my iTunes?)

Babel phish! A graph of in which languages passwords are easiest to crack. I hope that sentence made sense.

Koreans apparently have something in common with people in the United States – many don’t accept evolution. Great. They’ve even taken it out of textbooks.

What the hell is the point of taking a course if you don’t bother to learn the material? Thanks for degrading the value of good grades, cheaters.

I always enjoy reading articles that make me think, “I can understand this because of my college education.*” Interesting ideas, and I love the pyrolysis analogy.

What can we do to convince children they are not lost causes? Can we make the American dream possible for people from all backgrounds?

Love this messenger bag. And I don’t really like messenger bags.

eHarmony and LinkedIn confirmed password leaks. Change your pw.

Is Pleasure a Sin?” A nun wrote a book about desire, masturbation, and similar topics. The Vatican doesn’t like it so much, but they took 6 or so years to decide that. Sounds like an interesting book, but not one that I’ll end up reading.

Drug-resistant gonorrhea. Frightening. Very frightening even for someone whose only risk comes from the possibility of being raped. Drug-resistant strains of STI’s are a major reason we need to teach both abstinence and safe sex practices, and why we need to teach our children to have serious and honest conversations about sex with one another before engaging in sexual activity.

*That’s not to suggest people without a college education or without a formal education in economics can’t understand it.

What I’ve Been Reading: June 4

Wow, it’s already June 4th? Where have the last 6 months gone?

I spent several hours out on the water in my kayak today. In fact, my new kayak is a major reason I haven’t been posting as consistently as I did, say, in March. That and the weather has been awesome lately.

For starters, go read these hilarious burqa cartoons. Of course, many are simultaneously disturbing and several aren’t so much funny as sad or plain disturbing.

Xeni on a NYT Times* article that angered her, although she calls everything except the opening line, a photo caption, and the headline “serviceable.” Her sort-of rage post was pure awesome.

Four men that planned to bomb the offices of Jyllands-Posten were found guilty and sentenced to 12 years  in prison for terrorism.

Don’t Cry for Standford Undergrads” – A very valid point that many of the students with terrible debt are those dropping out of college before getting a degree and those going to (predatory) for-profit schools. Man, had I gone to Standford I’d have less than $20,000 in loans. *sigh*

Fake weddings for fun? Sounds like my kind of party, especially when there are (good) underlying messages.

I don’t think I’ve read much from this particular author in the Economist, but I’m hoping that the tremendous sarcasm and satire I seem to be sensing is truly there. As for the topic of the article – Bloomberg’s soda ban deserves its own blog post from me.

Two thirds of new mothers have trouble breast feeding. My sister, who is a mother of two, was talking about the various reasons mothers give up on breast feeding the other day.

Educating middle school students about abusive relationships (and their healthy counterpart) is an attempt to educate before abusive relationships become a real problem. I have no idea if it will work, but I hope it helps.

New information regarding Amelia Earhart and her last radio signals makes me sad rather than anything else. It would seem she managed to land her airplane and call for help, but died anyway.

Finally, I’m still trying to think of a clever name for these posts. I’m still failing miserably to come up with anything.

*Ha, I say “Xeni” like I know who Xeni is. I don’t, but I liked her post.