Tuesday, November 29, 2005

A "Holiday" Soapbox

I am probably going to get some grief for this post, but I'm tired. I'm tired of getting emails saying that we should force retailers to use the word Christmas in their advertising. I love the people who are sending me these emails, truly I do, but I disagree with what they are saying.

You see, I am a Mormon, and therefore Christian. I celebrate Christmas. But I also try to respect people of other faiths who don't. When I do send Christmas cards (which isn't often), I send cards that say "Happy Holidays." Not because I don't want to celebrate the birth of Christ, but because I have people on my list who don't. They do however celebrate the holidays. It isn't my job to force my beliefs upon them, it is my job to love them and respect them and their beliefs, just as they respect mine.

To me, Christmas is not about retailers who will or won't say the words "Merry Christmas." And frankly I could care less about the Jerry Falwell’s and Bill O'Reilly's who are saying there is a "War on Christmas." To me, Christmas is about celebrating the birth and the life of Christ. He was, and is not a respecter of persons. He loves all of us, Christian and non-Christian alike. Whatever words we choose to use or whatever faith we choose to practice, Christ loves us unconditionally. Whether we choose to say “Merry Christmas” or “Happy Holidays,” Christmas is not in danger. Our beliefs are not in danger, because they are just that, our beliefs. No one can take them from us.

So, to the three of you who I know read this blog, Happy Holidays! For those of you I don’t know about, have a wonderful holiday season, whatever you choose to celebrate.

Friday, November 11, 2005

More than you want to know

I was reading my friends blog the other day and I'm telling you, if you haven't read it, you should. She is funny and charming and very engaging. Anyway, she stole the following idea from a random blog that she read and now I'm stealing it from her. And I'm telling you it is harder than it sounds.

So, here you go. 100 things you never knew you wanted to know about me.

  1. I love Art!

  2. I don’t like to drive.

  3. I think Ice Cream can fix any problem.

  4. I wish I could draw.

  5. I have watery eyes (thanks to my father).

  6. I don’t cry nearly as much as I’d like to.

  7. I’m an obsessive reader. If I find a book I like I don’t get anything else done until I’ve read it.

  8. I color my hair once a month (otherwise I’d look a whole lot older than I’d like to look).

  9. I’m terrible at writing letters, even when it is as easy as sending an email.

  10. I love to sing, and will do it whenever I have the chance.

  11. I go to church every Sunday.

  12. I had a dog, but it was so painful when we had to put him down, I don’t want another one.

  13. History fascinates me.

  14. I’ve recently started watching Desperate Housewives.

  15. My best friend is in Napoleon Dynamite.

  16. I’d much rather be behind the camera than in front.

  17. Public speaking terrifies me, but I’m actually pretty good at it.

  18. When I get nervous I crack jokes.

  19. I love to knit.

  20. I like to make beaded jewelry.

  21. Meeting famous people does nothing for me (unless it is any of the members of U2, then I’d be a mess).

  22. I’ve been to Paris.

  23. I don’t like Ballet.

  24. I’ve blocked out most of High School.

  25. I’m terrible at remembering names, but I rarely forget a face.
  26. I think standing ovations are over rated and I rarely stand with the crowd.

  27. I love musical theatre.

  28. I like jell-o

  29. Sometimes I wish it was socially acceptable for a 35 year old to color.

  30. When I’m sick I always want my Mom to take care of me.

  31. I was once addicted to caffeine, and kicking that habit is one of the hardest things I’ve ever done.

  32. I love giving gifts.

  33. I wish my birthday was in April instead of February.

  34. I think going to a U2 concert is a spiritual experience.

  35. My fingernails grow way too fast.

  36. I get a pedicure once a month.

  37. I get warts on my fingers.

  38. I’m shy, but most people don’t believe me when I say that.

  39. When I was little I wanted to be a writer...and a hair stylist.

  40. I have very little patience.

  41. When I’m stressed my eye twitches.

  42. The words "The Nutcracker" make me want to slit my wrists.

  43. With the exception of the years 1999 & 2000, I haven’t had a Thanksgiving weekend off in 12 years (see #42).

  44. Did I mention that U2 is the greatest band in the history of bands?

  45. I’m a photographer (though not professionally).

  46. I have 4 brothers and 2 sisters.

  47. I’ve lived in Utah my whole life and never skied.

  48. I’m afraid of water.

  49. Fall is my favorite season.

  50. I know how to start a pretty good fire, though I don’t much like to camp.

  51. I was once bit by a rare tick and was sick for a month and a half before the doctor figured out what was wrong with me (I thought I was going to die…literally).

  52. I love to take baths.

  53. I love the Eiffel Tower.

  54. I’m very straight forward (some would call it blunt).

  55. One of my biggest pet peeves is milk left out on the counter.
  56. I’m terrible at math.

  57. I’ve been to the Olympics.

  58. I don’t like to shop, but I love to spend money.

  59. When I get sleepy I get chatty.

  60. I don’t like to wear shoes.

  61. I own 10 scarves but only 1 coat.

  62. I think that coconut is the most disgusting food ever (except the time I didn’t know I was eating it, then it was pretty good).

  63. Deer Lake in Washington is my favorite place on earth.

  64. I think it is better to see Shakespearean plays than to read them.

  65. I have carpel tunnel.

  66. I’m lactose intolerant.

  67. Stupid people make me crazy, which is kind of a bold statement, because who is to say that I’m not a stupid person.

  68. I would love to win the lottery but would never buy a ticket.

  69. I’m a Mormon.

  70. I love surprises.

  71. I own a Magic 8 Ball.

  72. I think Wal-mart is evil.

  73. I’m a democrat, which is kind of an oxymoron when you read #69.

  74. I own three cameras.

  75. I make fun of bad theatre (which is sometimes a good thing, but not always).

  76. I don’t like yellow mustard, but LOVE Dijon mustard.

  77. Making this list is a lot harder than I thought it was going to be.

  78. I’ve never been to Disney Land.

  79. I don't like Country Music.

  80. My X-men name is Distract-o (because I’m distract-ed, not distract-ing).

  81. I have 5 nieces, and 4 nephews, with one on the way and I LOVE being an Aunt.

  82. I love New York City.

  83. Spiders scare the crap out of me.

  84. I love classical music.

  85. Lara Deppe is one of the funniest people I know (and I know some funny people).

  86. I think clowns are scary.

  87. I’m allergic to Nuts.

  88. I can’t sleep if my bedroom door is open.

  89. It bothers me when someone opens a door for me.

  90. I’m always late, except to Theatre, Movies and Concerts.

  91. I’m kind of bossy…ok, that’s an understatement.

  92. I’m prone to exaggeration.

  93. I’m short.

  94. I think the only thing worse than cleaning the toilet is having a dirty toilet.

  95. I hate road trips.

  96. I’ve never voted for anyone named George Bush (and, yes, I was old enough to vote when the first one ran for a second term).

  97. I always keep 2 emails in my inbox so that I can hear the guy say "You’ve Got Mail."

  98. I’m listed in the phone book.

  99. Old people make me smile

  100. I’ve never been to the Ocean.

Monday, November 07, 2005

Note about the following post

It's just a rant. If you are a Wal-Mart shopper, own it, embrace it. I'll still love you!

Evil, thy name is Wal-Mart

In fact, my brother calls them the Whore of all the Earth, and I don't think he's too far off.

My sister Blemily (who is nowhere to be found in the "blogosphere," so I can't link you to her...although, I would LOVE it if she were) sent me an article today called
Global Insight Releases New Study on the Impact of Wal-Mart on the U.S. Economy. Now, being the TOTALLY right brained artistic loser that I am, most of what I read sounded a lot like "Blah blah blah blah, Wal-Mart blah blah." But the 5% that I actually use of the left lobe of my brain understood this article to mean, that Wal-Mart hired Global Insight to do a study and then sponsored a conference in order to pat themselves on the back and say "we are single-handedly saving the U.S. Economy." In the words of my sister "It’s amazing what they’ll do to make it look like it’s all OK."

Let me tell you how I see Wal-Mart. First of all, where I live, you can't swing a dead cat without hitting a Wal-Mart store (including the Neighborhood Markets and Sam's Club). I did a little search on walmart.com and found that there are 20 stores within 50 miles of me, and 11 with 30 miles, and that's not including the 3 Sam's Clubs that I know of, and the new store they are building in Centerville. To me, that's a little excessive. I also see that while the Wal-Mart Super Stores parking lots are constantly buzzing, other similar shopping centers are nearly empty. But I get it, Wal-Mart's prices are low. That is the plain and simple truth. And I completely understand that some people simply can't afford to shop other places.


The real reason I cannot bring myself to shop at the above mentioned Super Store has to do with something that happened nearly 9 ago. My best friend was killed in a crash when a Truck Driver fell asleep at the wheel and hit her head on. What does that have to do with Wal-Mart you ask? Well, recently Wal-Mart lobbied congress to extend the workday for truckers to 16 hours as long as truckers took an unpaid two-hour break. Currently, their workday is limited to 14 hours with only 11 consecutive hours of driving allowed...math may not be my strongest suit, but that sounds like not only a shorter day, but a longer break. And longer breaks mean more rest, and more rest means safer drivers. I personally think that is enough.

I miss my friend, and boycotting Wal-Mart isn't going to bring her back. In fact, I'm lucky, in that I know I will see her again. But a tired trucker broke the hearts of my friend's family, and mine. And I can't support a company that would allow that to happen again, no matter how low their prices are.

Holy cow! That's my second soap box in a row. At least it's a new week.


Thursday, November 03, 2005


The One Declaration

"WE BELIEVE that in the best American tradition of helping others help themselves, now is the time to join with other countries in a historic pact for compassion and justice to help the poorest people of the world overcome AIDS and extreme poverty. WE RECOGNIZE that a pact including such measures as fair trade, debt relief, fighting corruption and directing additional resources for basic needs - education, health, clean water, food, and care for orphans - would transform the futures and hopes of an entire generation in the poorest countries, at a cost equal to just one percent more of the US budget. WE COMMIT ourselves - one person, one voice, one vote at a time - to make a better, safer world for all."

Ok, I’ll admit it, the reason I know about the One Campaign, is that I’m a huge U2 fan. But let me tell you part of the reason that I’m a huge U2 fan. Its things like the One Campaign and the fact that their music means something. It isn’t just drivel spewing from talent-free children who have the right PR people to make a name for them. (Did I just use the word drivel in a sentence?) They may be celebrities, but they realize that
the price of greatness is responsibility.

So, to all three of you who actually read this blog,
go sign this declaration, buy the wrist band, tell all your friends to sign, put a banner on your website (or blog, like the cool animated one up in the corner). So what if you can’t do a whole lot, just do something (and if the only thing you can do is sign your name to the declaration, so be it.) There is too much suffering in this world, we’ve got to carry each other.

And that's my soap box for the week.