Thursday, June 24, 2010
Thursday, June 17, 2010
There are those days when all one wants is someone who loves you unconditionally. Someone who assumes good intent when you work your ass off. Below are the members of my family that do that for me. The one with the tail does it so perfectly and the other one tries really hard. I just want to say thanks.
Tuesday, June 15, 2010
Luckily Nicki Liberti is very cute. We spent a quality hour together today at AT&T. After about a half hour wait I stepped up to Nick's station. Systems were running slowly, but after about 20 minutes, Nick said "$219, please swipe." I like a bargain, but that was just too good to be true. I suggested that I wanted a 32 GB model and I think I am being charged for 16 GB. Sure enough the system had downgraded me. I was the first, but not the last. Agents huddled. No luck. After 3 retries the info was entered manually and I was promised a phone call to confirm.
Nick just called to reconfirm my billing info and said that April 24 was still good. Nick could not have been nicer and I was in a great mood so I am hopeful. The blogs are ripe with horror stories. AT&T + Apple = Toyota?
Monday, June 14, 2010
The last iris of the season is is "Orange Harvest." As you can see it is quite determined to bloom beyond the others and still has a few buds...
The first Standard Dwarf Bloomed in later April. In Early May, the intermediate "Immortality" started to bloom and on May 17, the tall bearded irises started. Almost a month later they are almost done. "Gypsy Moth" bloomed last week and Orange Harvest has been blooming since May 11.
Saturday, June 12, 2010
Monday, June 7, 2010
This has been the Pentecost of Dueling Anglicans and the gloves are off. If you are not of the Anglican persuasion, trust me, this is a wild as we ever get in public. In one corner we have the Archbishop of Canterbury, trying his damnedest to slow the progress of any news flashes from the Holy Spirit, whose appearance, after all, is the reason we celebrate Pentecost, and the Presiding Bishop of the Episcopal Church, trying her damnedest to speed up progress without falling apart.
Diane Butler Bass accurately and eloquently describes the formal fisticuffs in The Huffington Post:
Unless you've been sleeping in a cave, you are probably aware that the Episcopal Church (of which I am a member) has been arguing about the role of LGBT persons in the church. Along with the Anglican Church of Canada, the Episcopal Church has opened itself toward full inclusion of gay and lesbian Christians. Here in North America, this has caused some defections (fewer than at first predicted), some legal suits (most have been settled in favor of the Episcopal Church), monetary fallout (hard to separate from general economic downturn), and bad feelings (which, sadly enough, remain). But what is most surprising -- and I regularly hear this from bishops, clergy, and congregational lay leaders -- is that things are much less tense in the Episcopal Church now than they have been in recent years. Folks are moving ahead in their local parishes doing the sorts of things that Episcopalians are pretty good at doing -- creating beautiful worship, praying together, and feeding hungry people.Read it all here....
Despite the fact that the Episcopalians are bumpily journeying into a renewed future, some other Anglicans -- mostly in Africa -- are pretty mad that we've included our gay and lesbian friends and relatives in our churches. Large communities of Anglicans in places like Uganda (the same Uganda that recently tried to pass a death-penalty law for gay people) and Malawi (the same Malawi that recently sentenced a gay couple who wanted to marry to 14 years of hard labor) are seriously unhappy with American Episcopalians and Canadian Anglicans.
And this leads us to the Pentecost pastoral letters.
While (somewhat ironically) attending a conference in Washington, DC entitled "Building Bridges," Rowan Williams sent out his Pentecost letter to Anglicans worldwide, which, after saying a lot of nice things about missions and diversity, pulls rank and proclaimed that he's going to kick people off important committees whose national churches have violated a controversial guidelines laid out in documents called the Windsor Report and the Anglican Covenant. This includes the Canadians (who let gay Christians get married) and the Americans (who recently ordained a lesbian bishop in Los Angeles) and some Africans (who ordained some Americans who were splitting churches in places like Virginia and Pennsylvania).
In response, Katharine Jefferts Schori essentially accused Williams -- in a nice sort of Anglican way -- of being a theological dictator. As she says in understated fashion, "Unitary control does not characterize Anglicanism." For non-Anglicans, trust me, those are fightin' words.
This is not a conservative/liberal argument (both Rowan Williams and Katharine Jefferts Schori are theologically liberal). This is a fight between rival versions of Anglicanism, a quarrel extending to the beginning of Anglicanism that has replayed itself periodically through the centuries down to our own time.
Saturday, June 5, 2010
Talk about winning the culture wars! Today Kyle and I attended the blessing of a civil marriage of two men. The marriage was performed in Massachusetts and blessed in a church where one of the men is the Rector. The current Bishop of Maine, and former Canon from Rochester, The Rt. Rev. Steve Lane, officiated. The current Bishop of Rochester, The Rt. Rev. Dr. Prince Singh, celebrated the Eucharist and the retired Bishop of Rochester, The Rt. Rev. Jack McKelvey, preached. And did he preach! (McKelvey and his wife were the witnesses when Kyle and I were married in Toronto, Feb. 22, 2008.)
Coming on the heals of the Presiding Bishop calling out the Archbishop of Canterbury for his wimpy unwillingness to really get what Pentecost is really about, it crowned a week of bringing the legislative victories of General Convention to the pews of your run-of-the-mill Episcopal Parish.
But wait, there's MORE! This did not happen in San Francisco, NYC, South Beach or Provincetown. This happened in BATH, NY. In the heart of the Southern Tier of New York, trust me, this place could not be more Middle-America. The demographic of the small city in rural NY is probably little different than any village of 5,641 in Nebraska or Eastern Oregon.
I could not be happier for The Very Rev. J. Brad Benson and Dr. Carl Johengen. I hope they sent this in to the New York Times.
Likewise, I could not be prouder of the Episcopal Church!
Wednesday, June 2, 2010
Tuesday, June 1, 2010
Some Late Bloomers...
Kyle's favorite flower is white... and so this was his first choice at Borglum's last year. We are not sure what its name is so as usual Dana said, "Probably a seedling, you name it." And so "Pure Frilly White it is until otherwise identified. It is so completely white, falls, standards and even the beard that it looks like a wedding dress.
The other late bloomer was in the Pleasant Valley end of the summer value pack. Not expecting all to survive I planted them all in one bed. But everyone came up and 90% of them bloomed. They were all delightful surprises and this was one of the gems. "Repartee" has peachy standards and violet falls. With a rust to purple beard surrounded by peach shoulders, it is full and dramatic. Hard to believe the rhizome cost about $2.