Wednesday, April 20, 2011

Chocolate - a Really Guilty Pleasure

It's so hard to do the right thing all the time isn't it? Sometimes it's ignorance and sometimes it's selective remembering but when confronted with the truth of something that is really wrong, we try to do the right thing.

We're Atheists. I don't know why that word seems so aggressive but it does. I sometimes say we're Humanists as it sounds less confrontational. The point is, we don't believe in God (or any god). We also don't think you need a religious ideology in order to be ethical. It's perfectly fine with us if you do, we're not going to light flaming torches, go crusading and bop you over the head till you join the fold! See, completely non-threatening fluffy Atheists here.

It's Easter and, as with Christmas, there are issues to contend with when you have small enquiring minds who ask probing questions. We're not about to let them miss out on the fun parts of both occasions. We're Atheists not Sadists. Fortunately for us the Christians co-opted other earlier celebrations to do with Spring and the Winter Solstice so we can tell them, "Some people believe...and others believe..." and still find a reason to have the Easter Bunny visit and eat chocolate that doesn't feel too hypocritical. Although our stance is made more tricky by being in the Southern Hemisphere and so the whole new life, spring celebration thing is a hard sell.

We focus on the being with family, enjoying life and each other, and eating chocolate angle.

Well, that was till the child slave labour thing! So, I'm off to Oxfam to buy fair trade chocolate and I'll be filling these adorable old school cardboard eggs with something that hopefully hasn't abused the rights and body of a child somewhere in the world.

Monday, April 18, 2011

Zen and the LOL

I was going to post about my outrage that the OED has accepted LOL and OMG into its latest revision. But then I realised I actually don't really care enough to be outraged. Although I prefer LOL as an acronym for Little Old Lady and I doubt that when people write ROFLMAO, that they actually are, or we'd have funny shaped jeans everywhere.

I will remain a conscientious objector and, apart from the above occurrences, I will continue not to use either. People can transmogrify nouns into verbs (gift, access) or stick superfluous prefixes on words (irregardless) and I still don't care. I will not be ruffled. I have newly honed reserves of patience toward people who aren't me.

Oh, but please don't use commas as new Zen outlook doesn't allow for that trangression.



Saturday, April 2, 2011

So much despair and tragedy. Some good news is always nice.

Friday, April 1, 2011

Bring Out Your Dead

Many years ago we did a road trip through western parts of the US. As we were approaching Las Vegas I was reading to the Historian the entry in the Lonely Planet book. It said that even the most jaded person can't help but feel lucky as they crest the final hill and see the twinkling lights of Vegas laid out before them. It was true. We felt "lucky" but we're not insane gamblers or wealthy by any means and not about to blow money. 

Vegas was hilarious to us, everything was funny. So glittery and gaudy and "ping-ping whoop" over the top. The lights! the carpets!! We laughed a lot and after two days of playing the 5c slots and living on free popcorn, $1 frozen margaritas and all you can eat seafood buffets at 5pm with the flocks of old age pensioners (the Historian went back for 5ths of dessert and we had to sit in the car like boa constrictors digesting a very large animal afterwards),  we came out completely even but with a fantastic adventure to show for it. We may not have won the jackpot but we were very "lucky" indeed.

We've recently had a council bulk rubbish collection here, A.K.A "Bring out your Dead". Bring our your Dead gives me that same feeling. An irrational "lucky" feeling that I'm going to hit the jackpot and find the perfect antique oak hall table that I'm looking for discarded on the neighbour's front verge. Sadly, it doesn't usually live up to it's promise. Hordes of "professional" rubbish fossickers patrol the streets and anything remotely "good" is snapped up very quickly. It's a true demonstration of the idiom, "one man's trash is another man's treasure" as even the hideous burnt orange glass and gold 70's style chandelier we removed from our dining room was grabbed by the neighbour across the road while still in my hand as I was putting it out on our pile of rubble - yoik! The council no doubt banks on this helpful recycling as by the time they come to collect the stuff there is a mere fraction of it left.

Because I find it slightly (well, very) unseemly to be blatantly cruising up and down the roads of our neighbourhood with a trailer and picking through mounds of detritus in broad daylight. I have to wait till the cover of night and grab whatever I have just happened upon in my normal movements. Still, I feel that lucky feeling against such high odds that the perfect thing will be right there for me and this year I did manage to find a fantastic sofa and chair at different locations. They obviously weren't considered "good" by the professionals and were still there when we hurriedly crammed them in the back of our car while no-one was watching.

They need work but they have so much potential and they're destined to be our new "lounging area" on our deck. We can see ourselves snuggled up on them reading books this to finish a few billion other jobs before I can get stuck in to restoring them. 

Gustav doesn't think we should bother, they're perfect as is!