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Thursday, March 24, 2011

I Want to Live in Word World

"Welcome to the place where words come alive!"

Word World is a wonderful kids show that that teaches children the fun of reading and phonics. Frankly, I like because it is somewhat of a pleasant show to listen to in the background.

Every time I watch it, something astounds me: Pig has a cooking show. I always think "Why?" We have cooking shows on our planet because cooking is something that half of the population has trouble with at one point or another. On Word World all one has to do is find the letters that spell a particular food item, "build a word", and the food magically forms! How wonderful is that? If I want a pie, I only have to find three letters, "p", "i", and "e", squish it together, and WAHLA!: blueberry pie. (At least that is what it looks like in the show. I'm sure you could spell out pumpkin pie if you really wanted to.)

How EASY and MESS FREE! This is why I want to move to Word World.

Not to mention that if I want to build a rocket ship, all I would have to do is find the letters for "rocket". Or if I wanted say, a Jeep Wrangler, all I would have to do is dig up a few letters and I would get a JEEP! What a great world!

And Word World has letters floating around all over the place. They keep them in buckets in their homes. Dog digs them up out of the ground. Pretty much, this is a win-win situation.

Monday, March 21, 2011

Take Two: The New Poll Should Work This Time.

Sorry. It works now. If you would be so kind as to leave your feedback, that would be nice. :)

Sunday, March 20, 2011

New and Refined Poll

Please check out our new and refined poll on the right, and let us know what you think if you so desire.

Please note that the legal disclaimer on the previous poll applies to this poll as well.

Monday, March 7, 2011

Time to be Funny

So the last post I made was about pain. And after pulling up my blog for several days to check what was up with YOUR blogs, I got to thinking that it was time for something less painful up on mine.

Then, Nate posts, "A Time to Kill". Ironic? Well I'm not sure about that, I still haven't figured out the true definition of irony. It's a tricky one.

Well, not to belittle Nate's post in any way, in fact he made some good points, but I think it is finally time to get back to something a little more fun and happy again. Nate's post was really a review for the second Batman movie. This post is going to be about the Singles 2nd Ward movie.

Just as I thought, the movie had a little cheese in it, but as I also thought it had moments of great humor. I have to share my absolute favorite part.

Dallin was visiting Hyrum's ward for Sacrament meeting. Hyrum now has 6 kids and one on the way. Hyrum's wife is the chorister, and is holding a sleeping baby while leading the music. Hyrum hands his 6-7 year old twin boys kraft singles to eat, and after the boys open them, one of the twins flings his cheese at the man in front of them. Hyrum peels the cheese off his face and says, "Sorry Chad." Chad responds with an annoyed, "We do this every week, Hyrum." And about about two minutes later, Hyrum has to take the twins to the bathroom and he drags Dallin along with him. Hyrum starts telling him about what going to church is like with the kids (you know what he means), and all of a sudden you hear the sound of the toilets flushing and you see water rapidly creeping out from underneath both stalls, and then Hyrum says, "WHAT are you DOING?"

This is where I laughed my head off.

The inflection in his voice was absolutely perfect because it contained many inflections at once. The incredulous-ness in his voice, seeking to understand why. What would possess you child to come up with such a thing?? The shock at what just happened and yet he can remember when the twins probably squirted all the glue all over the kitchen floor last week. The horror of having to clean the disgusting mess up. All contained in one sentence.

Well after typing this, I realize it's not going to be as funny as watching it. I hope you find it funny. Perhaps I thought it was so extra funny because it was so late and I was tired. But I suspect the real reason why I thought it was so funny because William flooded the bathroom about two weeks ago.

"WHAT are you DOING??" If I didn't utter it aloud, I was definitely screaming it on the inside. :)

Sunday, March 6, 2011

A Time to Kill

To every thing there is a season, and a time to every purpose under the heaven:
2 A time to be born, and a time to die; a time to plant, and a time to pluck up that which is planted;
3 A time to kill...

Ecclesiastes 3:1-3

I’m watching a movie as I type this. The movie involves widespread chaos and mayhem. Most of it is caused (directly or indirectly) by one man. That man could have been stopped on multiple occasions. The only problem is that the way to stop him on those occasions would have involved killing him.

They should have done it. Of course there is an argument to be made that they did the right thing by not killing him. It just isn’t the right argument.

There is a law that says, in essence, “Thou shalt not kill.” That law must yield to the higher law whenever it would cross it. What is that higher law? That is a fair question. The first answer is the easiest for me--that God’s will in any given situation is the higher law. That answer is easy for me because I have faith in God. I have bought into the rhetorical appeal to God’s ethos. I trust him for who he is. If God says it is time to kill, then I believe it is time to kill. We won’t go into the can of worms that opens–e.g. the “God told me to do it” defense to murder.

The next answer is that societies have set up governments and endowed them with the right to take life. This answer is harder for me because I don’t know that society has the right to break the laws outlined in Exodus 20. It isn’t hard to think of governments that have abused the right to take life. For me this is a utilitarian consideration. Society comes together and decides certain rules under which it will function, with certain punishments attached. By making the rules and enforcing them, society prevents chaos and its children, including murder.

A complete discussion of the pros and cons of capital punishment is outside the scope of this post. There are several theories of punishment. One is retributive justice, which calls for punishment that will set at right the disturbed moral balance. One is deterrence. Deterrence can be broken down into general and specific deterrence. General deterrence envisions punishment as a means of discouraging everyone from breaking the law–stocks come to mind. Specific deterrence is designed to stop the criminal himself from breaking the rules in the future. The single most effective form of punishment for specific deterrence purposes is capital punishment–kill the criminal. I maintain that for certain criminals, specific deterrence is society’s highest priority. This is especially true in the world of mass murder and comic books. Take one life lawfully to save the unlawful taking of many lives.

Of course, society’s rules should include enforcement mechanisms and procedures. Enforcing the laws without following the proper procedures is a violation of society’s rules because law’s necessary companion is order. I don’t advocate vigilantes taking life to save life, but self defense and defense of others are situations in which society has approved the taking of life without following procedure. I advocate shooting the guy holding a gun to someone’s head--if it makes sense under the circumstances. For example, if the guy holding the gun is going to escape and kill lots more people–kill him. Another example is when you have the villain in custody, and he is likely to escape or direct further mayhem and murder from jail. In that case, go through the procedure and execute him swiftly.

This is taking longer than I thought by the way.

Sure, refusing to kill someone is noble and can separate hero from villain, but killing someone can also save lives. The greater good is served by taking the life of the one who will take the lives of many, and it is not noble to stand by while people die just so you can avoid being the one to pull the trigger. There is a time to kill.

Ok, one last thing. The movie ends in a lie, because “sometimes the truth isn’t good enough.” At first it really bothered me, but then I thought, “what greater irony than the atonement?” Punish the one innocent man as if he were the most guilty, to make the guilty innocent. I think the ending may be an intentional (and imperfect) atonement reference. There were some interesting lines at the end. “Why is he running?” “Because we have to chase him.” “He didn’t do anything wrong.” “We’ll chase him, because he can take it.”

Just so we're clear, I think the truth is good enough and the atonement is the truth.

Tuesday, March 1, 2011

"You mock my pain!" "Life IS pain, Highness. Anyone who tells you otherwise is selling something."

So I was eating my lunch, and needed something to read while doing so. I decided to once again attempt to read about hypno-birthing. It lasted about two minutes.... :)

{Now before I begin, on this little "discussion" about my hypno-birthing reading experience, please know that I am not against it or other forms of natural birthing. If it works for you, I am so happy for you. Please do it with my un-needed and/or un-asked for blessing. }

So why did it last for only two minutes? Well, I'll tell you. I made the mistake of once again beginning with its premise. Towards the beginning of the book, the author tells a little story (true story) about a doctor at the turn of the century in England. He worked in a hospital with educated women and he saw a lot of well to do women, come in to the hospital and give birth. It was a loud, painful experience for them. Then he went into the English slums to help a woman give birth without a sound except her steady breathing. She refused any kind of drug to help with pain. After the birth the doctor asked her how she did it. Wasn't it painful? And she told him that it didn't hurt. "Was it supposed to hurt doctor?" she asked him. Then later the doctor had a similar experience with another woman and he began to ask the question "Why?"

And I'm thinking, "Why!?! I'll tell you why! Because those women are incredibly LUCKY that's why!!! Something is wrong with the pain sensors in their uterine muscles, that's why!"

Of course I know what is coming on next....he is going to blame society's and medicine's unnatural attitudes about birth.

Now please let me state here that to a point I actually agree with him. I do believe that I personally make my own pain worse because of stress and fear. This is why I bought the book (for a $1.50 at a yard sale) in the first place. I want some pain management skills to help me get through the labor in a happier manner.

But today with a little help from The Princess Bride, I remembered why this whole thing upsets me so: They mock my pain. Or at least I feel that way. I feel that the are telling me that the pain I felt was unjustified. Well let me tell you. I felt pain. The biggest pain of my life. I didn't expect it to hurt as bad as it did. It did it all by itself. And you are trying to make it sound like it isn't a real thing. Do you think this makes me feel better? When you go through a painful experience, physical or emotional, do you want to hear someone tell you that so&so went through the same experience in a dignified and painless manner, and you should be able to also?? NO! You want some sympathy! And furthermore, nice MALE hypno-birthing enthusiast doctor, why don't YOU give birth sometime and tell me if it doesn't hurt.

Anyway, sorry. As I stated in the paragraph before I got away with myself, I REALLY do believe that if I could stay calmer it wouldn't hurt as bad as it has in the past. But I am NOT trying to say that it wouldn't hurt at all.

My friend Clair, who I admire, is a firm believer in natural home birth, not that it is exactly the same thing as "hypno-birthing", but it is still a natural attitude about birthing--that a woman's body is built to accomplish this task. I think it was a very smart decision for her to give birth that way. (I think it was a smart decision for pretty much all the people I know who have felt good about it and then done it.) But did she tell me that it was pain free? NO. It hurt her too. But it was worth it to her to give birth naturally at home, and she knew how to manage the pain.

I want a little realism like that here. One of my favorite stories about this, that I read in a magazine, goes like this. Some details I am fuzzy on now, but I will do my best. The story is about a woman (and her husband), and I think she was some sort of athlete, perhaps even a little famous. But the point is, that she and her husband were completely into hypno-birthing. They went to all the classes, they had her mind visualizations all set. Very prepared, they went to the hospital to do this hypno-birthing thing. Well it turns out that during the labor process, she felt what many women feel at this time in their lives: PAIN. Her helpful husband tried to help her visualize her favorite visualization, "the fawn in the forest." Well, I won't repeat what she said because she swore, but let's just say she chose to get the epidural. Now, I'm not promoting the epidural here. She said in the story, that next time, she might want to try hypno-birthing again and more power to her. All I am saying is that the pain is REAL. That's all. If you find a way to manage it, that works for you, go for it even if it is hypno-birthing. But don't try to tell me that my pain is ALL in my head.

Perhaps I need to go somewhere else to learn pain management skills......I don't think hypno-birthing and I are such a good combination. It's a shame though, because that book was really a good price.