|What would Jesus Drink?|
|Weed it and Reap|
Wednesday, June 30, 2004
Future posts will be at TheHighPost.com where I will be teaming up with Mr. Joffre Swait of Floridian fame. Come visit us there!
Friday, June 18, 2004
I've a couple of links for you today. Maybe I'll post something thoughtful later, but maybe not. Oh, some friends of mine are thinking about opening a coffeeshop. Since most of you are coffee geeks please let me know your ONE most favoritest thing you like about your most favoritest coffeeshop. Please email me.
Oh, and I no longer work at Caribou. I currently deliver papers for the Saint Paul Pioneer Press and am training to be a sales rep for AFLAC. You can start the duck jokes . . . NOW.
Do you think Putin wants Bush re-elected? He seems to be trying awful hard!
Speaking of Superman, has anyone seen these? I recommend you only click if you have a fast connection. I like 'em.
Oh, and regarding the beheading of Berg and the rumoured beheading of Johnson, if I get captured by Al Qaeda I want any one who loves me not to whine to the press, begging my captors to release me. These terrorists will not and the proper response should be one of willful opposition. If I get captured, I want my family to tell the Saudis and America to kill every terrorist they have in custody. This is how they want to play? Let's play by their rules and see how they like it. And if any of my loved ones get captured - that's exactly how I will respond.
Returning to my oft asked question, how does Thucydides relate to this? Remember the Melian speech! The strong do what they can, the weak bear what they must. And if the weak want to fight dirty, well then. Suck it up big boys. The least we can do is strip them naked, line them against a wall and have them shot by women. I too will curse them in my prayers.
And I wasn't going to say anything today.
Thursday, June 10, 2004
This might seem late - or at least untimely in light of President Reagan's recent death and the necessary attention it merits - but I just came across a copy of World magazine from May 22 in which there is a "debate" between Michael Farris and Don Wildmon about the Marriage amendment. In a way I should have anticipated the content of the articles, especially as Farris was arguing "against" the amendment while Wildmon argues for it. But my hopes were raised with the subtitle to Farris' article: "Let's work on actually saving marriage, not be content to redefine it." As we bantered back and forth a few months back about the marriage amendment, I thought I'd review both articles and give my two cents worth. The "debate" is really two sides of the same coin. Mr. Wildmon says that it's a good start and we should work for more while Mr. Farris argues that it's not good enough and we should work for more. Substantively at issue is that the amendment tacitly or explicitly - depending on which wording gets passed, I presume - allows for civil unions while denying marriage.
The sum and substance of Mr. Farris' position is that the amendment merely defines marriage strictly, but allows for the nebulous category of civil unions. And I definitely affirm what he says several paragraphs in that we need to preserve the substance of marriage, not just the definition. I would fully agree with that statement, and even be willing to go to bat for Mr. Farris in other fronts if he doesn't mean something different than I do, even if we both affirm the exact same words. There are three points at which I differ with Mr. Farris in his thesis, that we must save the substance of marriage. A good Calvinist discussion! Three points! Or is it five points? What?
I disagree in how Mr. Farris wishes to define marriage to begin with. Mr. Farris begins his article with this statement, "The Massachusetts Supreme Court got one thing right. They said, 'In a real sense, there are three partners to every civil marriage: two willing spouses and an approving State.'" Now, if Mr. Farris is right, and marriage is a union of three partners, though hardly Trinitarian in my book, then he would be absolutely right in asserting that the state should help define and regulate what the union is. This of course is indicative of the mess we are in legally regarding marriage. It's nearly been reduced to a tax status with sentimental attachment. The lameness of civil unions can almost be likened to the British attempt to call a home a "domestic unit" in the 1930's. Churchill's response "Ah, domestic unit, sweet domestic unit, there's no place like domestic unit" was a more apt response than by complaining that they were changing the technical terminology. The problem homosexuals have with the term civil union might be along the same lines. It's boring. Technical. Ugly. And, as Queer Eye has typecast the New Gay Man, they want something stylish, maybe even a little traditional to describe their loving relationships. They look around and see the word Marriage with its attendant symbolism and legal status.
Ah, but is marriage a union of the state and two loving people? I thought it was a union of two loving people and a loving and holy God. "What God has joined together, let no man put assunder." Maybe I'm mistaken. Leaving the question of sacrament aside, who is uniting these two people? If it is the state, then by all means. Let 'em have it, 'mendment or no amendment. I don't care. But if there is a religious element involved, then what is that? If the Church becomes covenanatally connected to the couples. This of course creates a mess - one which I shan't wish to consider in light of the disparate denominations and their stances on things like covenant and Lesbian Eskimo Bishops. But perhaps Farris is looking for the cleanness that is evoked by a legal dictum. After all, if there are no gay marrages in the US, then it's a clean slate. But is it?
Here is where the rubber meets the road. Farris wants to save marriage because it's the safe thing to do and runs to some polls to prove it. It's not risky conservatively. Enough people oppose gay marriage or civil unions that you can oppose it and still be thought normal. If you've read Thucydides (my how his name rings in my household!) you know about half measures and the results they generate. Like Athens at Corcyra, conservatives are attempting to get desired results without committing to a fight. They lack the Cajones to say homosexuality is wrong, a sin, and should be eliminated so they plant a flag for definition, for status, for legal dictum. Their opposition is the tepid "We don't want to have to like it, that's all we're saying." But this does accomplish two things. First, it glosses over the failures of the church in dealing with marriages. I know I've covered the issue several times about there being too many marriages put assunder by men. I'm not going to deal with that here. Second, it gives a safe position for people to be against homosexuality. They can be against gay marriage in their community because its just another delightfully selfish position. Marriage is ours and you can't have it. Not much different from the homosexual position which is, that we, the conservative family types, have it and they want in on the action. But back to Thucydides, all we're doing is poking them in the eye. They're now ready for a fight and we're saying, "Don't hurt me!" Half measures indeed. By attempting to protect the status quo we guarantee that we will lose. And status quo is Farris' position.
The position Mr. Wildmon argues for is even more tepid. He too is pro-family, etc, even plugs Patrick Henry, that good but far too politically-motivated college, but he is willing to compromise even on the amendment. I don't blame him - he discusses long and hard the difficulties in getting congresscritters to vote on such controversial things. But I'm left to wonder what the Musgrave FMA really accomplishes? Wildmon calls "homosexual marriage" a perversity. I differ with that statement. If homosexuals get married, that is not the perversity, but rather the cultural stamp of approval of perversity. And if that were the argument being brought forth for the amendment, that we as a culture - or at least the Christians in our culture - will not be tolerant, we will not approve such behavior (a la Leviticus 18 and I Corinthians 5) then I could get behind it. And if we vote for the Musgrave marriage amendment, then aren't we saying with Civil Unions that we give them our stamp of approval? On this I agree with Farris, there can be no compromise.
So. We are left with this: who creates marriage? God does, not the State. By assuming the State governs marriage, Farris gives them the authority to define it. All he can do is complain that he doesn't want homosexuals in his country getting married because it changes the landscape from the comfortable Reagan Era. Alas. We can't keep reminiscing about the 80's or the 50's or whenever the last good times were. They had their problems and they were met head on. The bad times, if you will, occur because we do not push back against the night. The light overcomes the darkness, not agrees to a truce. The death of Reagan should remind us of that. The best efforts by Wildmon and Farris, good hearted though they are, are weak and anemic. I guess I just find it a little bit queer that they are among the mighty heroes of the Christian Right.
Wednesday, June 09, 2004
"Marco Polo, If You Can" by William F. Buckley, Jr. is sort of a Tom Clancy meets Ian Flemming, related to Dorothy Sayers in style but set in real events among the 1950s. Imagine! Political-military intruige during the Eisenhower administration. Very nice - and different. The book starts out with a quote from Senator J. William Fulbright in 1975 which suggests that the U-2 incident in '59 might have been intentional. The book then takes off from there. Remember: apparently at the time neither the Soviets nor their missles could fly high enough to take out a U-2. So how did it go down? "No one will know whether it was accidental or intentional." At this point the facts merge with fiction and Buckley takes over. If you like his articles for National Review, you might like some of the novels he wrote in the 1980s. Blackford Oakes! What a name!
Its also the only book I can recall reading that had a comma in the title.
Speaking of Buckley, while reading his novel, I came across this article in which he discusses Kerry's campaing slogan, "Let America be America again". Apparently it comes from a Black American Poet in 1938. Here is one choice sentence from the man who is fun to read if only for his style. "There was little about America for the American Negro to celebrate in 1938 -- unless you are willing to accept the proposition of George Washington Carver. Mr. Carver, scientist and philosopher, the son of a slave, said that American blacks had this to celebrate: that they had been plucked from African forests, brought to America, and baptized into the liberating faith of Christianity, which was the springboard for their emancipation." Hmmm. Does he have a thing with commas? Six in that last sentence. Lessee subject, verb, multiple gerunds posing as objects, adjectives, . . . Yeah.
Speaking of Ian Fleming, Charles P. Van Someren - who really needs to get his own blog going - agrees, or did he say it? I don't remember - that James Bond is merely an American with a British accent as neither of us can imagine a real Brit ever being that flashy. The Tuxedos? The overwhelming style? It's like putting Stubbs barbecue sauce on Lamb Chops. Please! But of course we all love the voice, the accent.
Been thinking a lot about Reagan lately. Having grown up conservative, I'm very drawn to him and have mourned his death. No tears, but his passing did affect me. I wonder if it is because of the weight of my conservatism or the sentiments flowing from the likes of Paul Harvey and Rush Limbaugh touching some place very deeply rooted within me. In a very serious attempt to view all this in perspective of my Christianity, I'm more than a little skeptical with Pat Robertson talking about President Reagan's faith. I was surprised to see in his biography on the History Channel, his minister talking about it in relation to when Reagan was shot. The minister said he asked Reagan whether he was prepared for death and Reagan responded that he was because he trusted in Christ as his savior. It's scary that even in my Christianity I regard the History channel higher on the authoritative scale, while Pat Robertson ranks right below tea leaves. Farewell Mr. President. I miss your leadership and hope to see its likes again.
Nota bene, and strictly on an American level, I don't want Regan on the $10.00 bill. Hamilton needs to be there, lest we forget our founding. Without Hamilton we wouldn't be an economic power even today. I'm certain some of my Southern readers would prefer him on the $5. I might be fine with that or the dollar, after all, Lincoln does have the penny and Washington the quarter. My preference would be to see him on the $50 or the $100. He is far more deserving than either of those who currently hold those spots.
Thursday, May 20, 2004
For those of you in the know, Mr. Swait is visiting from his home in Northern Florida, which, he assures me, is different than southern Florida. Northern Florida apparently has more in common with Georgia and Alabama than it does with such climes as Miami. Tell that to the voters when Florida is painted Red or Blue in the 2004 election. Nonetheless, I am supremely happy to have him visit. Joffre wishes to let you know that his was the only county to vote Democrat in North Florida, but that's only because of the university there.
I'm having my very first Gin and tonic this evening. Made by Mr. Swait, of course, we're enjoying it in the John Schwandt Style. This means that we're enjoying Bombay Sapphire. Yum. Very tasty.
I'm sorry I blog so infrequently. Apparently I'm not as cool as some people who can waste their employer's money by blogging at work.
All that notwithstanding, only friends such as we would blog after we were drinking. Consider our efforts here well lubricated, though perhaps not all that worthwhile. Our day should live in Internet Immortality. Today we awoke to eggs over-easy and maple flavored sausages. Orange juice washed them down. Coffee from Mocha (a port in Yemen) and Java (a port in Indonesia) roasted to 415 degrees, a slightly darker roast helped in that effort. Afterwards, Joffre still feeling the need for Caffenation, we went to Caribou for his Triple Shot and my cup of their light roast of the day (I think it was their Daybreak blend). We picked up two ounces of tobaccy and made for Stillwater, MN; Aka Booktown, USA Stillwater is home to the two different locations of Loomes bookstore. Not John Robbins' StillWaters Revival books, mind you, but the real McCoy, and I don't mean Doctor. (For those of you overcome with nausea at the last statement, enjoy your nachos with lots of cheese). Joffre bought a spanish language copy of Heterodoxy in Spain. It covered such freaks of Theological Nature as mystics and Lutherans. Having spent lots of time around both, I wonder why he bought the tome when he could have just interviewed some of my relatives. (Not that I don't love my relatives, but some of them are mystics and others of them are lutherans - but none of them are spanish, so I fear the entire aesthetic would be lost).
(Joffre thinks I'm on a roll, though he's worried about all my parenthetical remarks). Um, yeah. I blame the gin.
The lime really helps.
I bought a copy of Dionysius Rising for five dollars. I only mention this to make you jealous. Good copy with no underlining, pencil or otherwise. Joffre's upset that I found a good book for only five bucks. Poor Joffre.
What rhymes with Minnesota? Ratial Quota? Racial Quota?
I think we should quit while we're ahead, or at least before we get too far behind - so far that we realize we're behind. But I do wish to close with this: Go T'Wolves! Beat those d@mn Lakers. For those of you not from the area, the Lakers initially hailed from Minneapolis (Hello! Land O' Lakes!?) but were stolen to the sunnier climes of Los Angeles where they may have an ocean, but not a lake.
Go Fred Hoiberg!
Friday, April 30, 2004
For those single men reading my blog, looking to pitch woo in a sophisticated and elegant manner to certain fathers over dinner (or husbands instructed by pregnant wives weary of cooking dinner for their insignificant others) consider the following dinner my wife and I enjoyed tonight. Simple, tasty, and elegant.
1993 Lyeth Meritage. "Meritage" means "bordeaux style wine made in California" and usually is made of Cabernet Sauvingon, Cabernet Franc and Merlot. I found the Lyeth at my local beer stop - the only one I've found to rival, yea, maybe even surpass Wine company of Moscow - for a very reasonable price in the $20.00s. Yes, a wine eleven years old. Heck, eleven years ago I was 16, pre-mil Dispie, arminian Baptist Pentecostal. Thank God for His infinite mercy on me, an idiot punk! But the wine is the centerpiece of the evening. This particular wine is, I'm sure, not available anyplace I can think of (I got the last bottle at Big Top), an aged Shiraz or California Cab, or Coppolla Claret Black Diamond label would suffice. The older, the better.
Begin steaming basmati rice. As rice cooks, stir in butter and oregano. (Nod to Kim Swait.)
Cover the bottom of a frying pan with olive oil, 1/4 cup of your wine of choice for the evening and a mix of beef sauces. Email for a list - or be a man and create your own!
Saute 1"x1/2"x1/4" sirloin strips in concoction for a few minutes until brown. Turn beef after 5 minutes. After 10, add a collection of sliced red and yellow pepper strips. Cook for another 10 minutes, or until beef is tender and cooked to desired level. Strain a little (but not too much!)
Place beef strips/peppers on rice. Add a small plate of bagged salad with cherry tomatoes. The tomatoes hide the fact that its a bagged salad.
For dessert, pound cake and Haggen Daz ice cream, or whichever specialty ice cream Rosaurs sells for 2 for $5.00.
Anyway, single men, go forth and pitch woo! Or husbands of preggers wives, eat hearty!
Thursday, April 29, 2004
Oooh! Oooh! Oooh! Were I in a classroom I would be antsy, raising my hand and hoping the teacher would call on me. And it isn't that I need to use the restroom that gets me in a tizzy. Its John Kerry taking communion after the Pope told him not to. How many fun topics does that raise? We have come a long way from Henry standing in the snow for three days and nights. Never mind the issue of the papacy and whether or not a sitting pope has the right to refuse communion on his own authority (he shouldn't). But since he's speaking on behalf of the church, lets assume that's ok or has been supported by the cardinals around him (who also should have no authority over the US church, but again, I digress). But still! We have hit the level of individualism where authorities in one sphere are refusing to obey the dictates of another sphere of authority to which they have made a voluntary association. Well, voluntary according to 'Pelosi, a San Francisco Democrat who was raised in a devout Italian Catholic home, told reporters, "I believe that my position on choice is one that is consistent with my Catholic upbringing, which said that every person has a free will and has the responsibility to live their lives in a way that they would have to account for in the end."' (Quote courtesy of Yahoo via Drudge). Ignoring the theological vacuity of representative Pelosi, and leaving the question of why her priest has not been removed to other minds, can you imagine Pelosi's response to one who treats her dictates in a like manner? Can I make this statement? "I willfully support those who wish to murder postal workers, believing that every person can do whatever they wish to do because they will have to give an account for it at the end and think that this is perfectly in line with my American upbringing." I would be rightfully decried as anti-American. But she (and her senior partner in crime, Mr. Kerry) cannot be called anti-catholic. I fail to see how they escape this designation.
Yes, yes, I'm blogging today. Things are finally settling down at work and I'm really beginning to enjoy myself. Sat outside last night, drinking Hennessy, smoking my pipe and reading Tom Wolfe's "The Pump House Gang." Very Swait.
Friday, March 26, 2004
What would Jesus drink? I'm convinced that the Wedding of Cana Water Pots were loaded with 2000 Leoville Barton as their red and 2001 Rombauer Vineyards Chardonnay. Some of you might recall my tasting notes on the 2001 (which, if I were as clever as Joffre, I would link you to them). However, I am now drinking the 2002. It is delightful, but a bit more apple than the previous year's vintage. Still those cedar tones along the back of the mouth, but fresh and crisp and delicious. If I were rating wines, which I choose not to, I'd rank this one behind it's elder brother - but maybe thats just because it needs a bit of time. As for the 2000 Leoville Bartons, well, I haven't had one yet. Still looking, though the local wineshop just got in three cases of the 1998's. Gotta get me some.
For those of you who are very dear to me, I was given opportunity to tell a new friend of mine the story of the wine rack. You will never know how much that meant to me. I'm very grateful.
Monday, March 22, 2004
I'll just let this quiz speak for itself.
Magister Mundi sum!
"I am the Master of the Universe!"
You are full of yourself, but you're so cool you
probably deserve to be. Rock on.
Which Weird Latin Phrase Are You?
brought to you by Quizilla
Tuesday, March 16, 2004
Alright, so you guys visit my blog often! I'm so delighted that I'm going to be a dad. Lots of fun! Let me see - there were questions. Ah, yes, Moriah, the Gall-child is due in the first part of November (which makes this an early announcement, I know. But we're excited so whaddaya know?! Sarah, thanks for your well-wishes. I hope the child get's Alaina's looks, but my constitution. As for names, we have been kicking around a few, but none we've settled on. One theme I have always liked for boys is a Prophet/Priest/King motif. I don't know if this means our boys will have four names, "Nathan Aaron David Gall" or some such. Then again, as Dr. Liethart once reminded me, most of the prophets WERE priests. Or we could do one boy as the "Prophet", etc. Betcha can't tell what I'm hoping for. Guess what the wife's hoping for. Oh, by the way, we're both firstborns so a lot rides on this one.
CPVS: You could visit me, but if you want to do so - let me know in advance and when you come to the security desk tell them you are coming to meet with the manager of the Caribou. In the Best Buy complex you have to have a security badge or be escorted. Also sometime between 11:00AM and 2:00PM would be best. I'll call you with this info, too. Otherwise, it's a hard 'Bou to get to. But we have a captive audience!
Joffre, I can't tell you how many times I wish you were my partner in our two-man-bar system. Imagine a morning pulling shot after shot after shot, with no other concern than to make sure they're all perfect. I miss you, bro. See you in May. You got the tickets?
Oh, and its now sadly official: A&I will not be returning to Moscow in May for Graduation barring a miracle. Joffre has kindly offered to do his best to bring Moscow to Me the weekend after graduation. (FYI: The Kitty's in the neighborhood of $300.00, iff you know what I mean). And Charles, you're more than welcome to join us for a smoke when he's here.
"One wonders why Franciscan wines cost a [fraction] of the price of Opus One when the only thing that separates the two vineyards is a road." - Robert Parker. A comment viewed at my local wine store this evening. As you know - or have read a time or two, Franciscan is a favorite of mine. If you're in Moscow, visit Terry and tell him I sent you and that I greet him and miss him for his patient expertise in his dealings with a amatuer hack. Really, everything I know I learned from him. Franciscan Merlot's are around $20.00 at the Wine Co of Moscow. They're not as big as the L'Ecole 41 Merlot's, but they're less expensive and just as fun to drink (or age and drink).
Alright, well. I'm visiting each of your blogs almost every day, but I'm too busy and way too tired to think of anything exciting to say. Well, except for last night and even that was brief. I've got a good staff, but they need me. Often.
Hello, I am a beer guzzling, book inhaling, coffee sipping, tobacco puffing, thought thinking, cigar smoking, espresso making, paper writing, wine connoisseur who sees dumb chiasms
My name Richard Gall
I am married to Alaina Gall
I am training to manage a
Caribou Coffee Shop
I am an Alumnus of
New Saint Andrews College
in Moscow, Idaho
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