Wednesday, March 19, 2008

Neil Young. Young Fresh Fellows. Violent Femmes. This is what I’m downloading tonight. I can see I am nearing the end of the alphabet. I think two more days and I’m done downloading all my music. This is very exciting.

The forum is going to return! It has taken a while, and I almost dispensed with it, but I am inspired to have it again. This time the company that hosts my website is going to build and host it, so it will not crash. I will have my same administrator as before. It should be up and running by the end of next week.

Tonight I had over two friends who live in Santa Fe who I haven’t seen in years. They bought their son, who is around Mulan’s age. It used to be that Mulan would play with boys and girls the same, I mean, she didn’t differentiate between the sexes that much. What meant the most to Mulan was that they were a kid. But now I can see it creeping in, the “he” is “other” kind of feeling. As in, “he’s not going to play American Girl dolls with me, so what is the point?” Ah, me.

I am a Obama supporter. I loved his speech, the one he gave yesterday. I read it first and it was so eloquent and it made me feel so patriotic – unexpectedly, deeply, actually tearing up and all that. Later I heard an excerpt on the radio, of Barack actually giving the speech and I thought it didn’t sound as good. But still. He’s awesome. I would support Hillary if she gets the nomination, but Barack has my unabashed enthusiasm.

Also, on the religion front (since that’s what I normally make comments about…) I feel Barack is more sincere about it than Hillary. (You know, I hate using his last name and her first name –that feels unfair somehow – but saying “Clinton” also feels wrong – “Clinton” to me is Bill Clinton. And Hillary is… Hillary.) Anyway, when Barack talks about his religiosity, I sense a genuine desire to be part of a religious tradition and he admits that he has deep doubt and that his faith has always included doubt, deep doubt. But Hillary – I don’t know. I feel she is pandering when she talks about religion. I mean I guess they are both doing that, but someone I don’t buy it with Hillary – or I feel that if it is truly sincere, it’s scary sincere.


Elizabeth said...

it is weird and anthropologically interesting when you see your female children start to self-identify as "girls." You want them to embrace who they are, but you don't want them to drown in all the cultural crap that comes with it. Not easy.

I feel the same way about Barak Obama v. Hilary Clinton. He seems more able to cut through the inevitable crap of campaign speak, and communicate the heart of who he is. And she does seem more calculated, more a product of the political machine.

Sheldon said...

I have to ask a completely un-related question... Are you NOT going to be at TAM this summer? I don't see you on the list, and the only thing I can figure is that you're going to be married in June and can't do both.

I'm not wild about Neal deGrasse Tyson (seems a bit arrogant in the programs I've seen), and was hoping to see a better line up of speakers and such. Hitchens is great, but it's always nice to have a Sweeney or two to balance out that intensity. LOL

Oh, and regarding National Geographic's "Genographic Project," I bought one for a friend as a birthday present last year, and then found that I get an educator's mine's on the way now! : ) Should prove interesting as I'm not sure where or when my ancestors migrated.
More info is available here:

devolve said...

I really think Hillary would switch parties (to ANY party), convert to Scientology, and eat a live kitten in public if she thought it would get her elected.

Petra said...

I realize the likelihood is next to none, but I harbor a deep-seated hope that Barack and Hillary can put egos aside and join together to present a united, and well-rounded, ticket. It would also give us a MUCH better chance of sixteen years to clean up the messes of the last seven, rather than four or eight.

: ) P

Nadine said...

I felt the same way about the written speech vs. the spoken. I think it was a really tense atmosphere to give a speech in with such a sensitive topic, and you could hear it in his delivery. He's still a really great orator, and I think the way it affected his speech just made it all the more convincing - if he'd been insanely strident about it I think it wouldn't have meant as much to people.

redbean said...

I don't know about Obama's choice of church though--not the racial stuff, but it's Church of Christ! It's fundamentalist, for crying out loud. I remember Sunday School at another Church of Christ church where we got the "evolution is just made up" lecture. I know it has a cultural meaning for him, but surely he could have found a less creepy denomination.

I DO like that Obama is talking about race. As a white person, I can't bring it up, but I really think we need to talk more about it honestly.

For what it's worth, the gravity of his delivery helped sell me on it. He almost stepped out of his politician role and back into his professor days. He felt genuine.

I second the TAM comment (but not the part about Tyson--he's really sweet). Penn, Hitchens, Dawkins, Randi--it'd be nice to have you there to balance all that testosterone.

sohereiam said...

Redbean, Obama attends a church in the United Church of Christ denomination, not Church of Christ. Confusing, yes. But Obama's denomination, abbreviated as UCC, is one of the most progressive denominations out there. They have a history of celebrating diversity, and recently mounted an advertising campaign that courted controversy by highlighting the warm welcome the UCC church gives to gay people.

Many people often confuse UCC with Church of Christ, which is indeed a far more conservative denomination. There is, however, ample information on the web to distinguish the two denominations.

Anonymous said...

Hey Julia and everyone,

Go to biologist PZ Myers blog under EXPELLED today, 3/20/08, for the funniest thing you have ever read!

Heidi said...

Barack Obama's speech gives me hope that he can change the tainted thing that passes for political dialog these days, and make it a good thing, a reasonable thing. I thought it was brilliant and audacious of him to give a speech rather than field questions from reporters, and what a speech it was! I wrote a little about it myself...

Anonymous said...

You said "I feel Barack is more sincere about it than Hillary," and "when Barack talks about his religiosity, I sense a genuine desire to be part of a religious tradition..." yet, Christopher Hitchens cynically suspects that in "The Audacity of Hope," paperback, in the chapter "Faith," beginning on Page 195, and read to Page 208, that Obama is really telling us that he doesn't actually have any profound religious belief, but that in his early Chicago days he felt he needed to acquire some spiritual "street cred."

It's in one of these:

As for me, I'm with Obama either way. I think he's secular enough.

Oberon said...

I mean I guess they are both doing that, but someone(somehow?) I don’t buy it with Hillary –

....had to do

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