Thursday, February 26, 2009

Misc. Nonsense

I hosted a wedding shower a couple months ago (Has it already been a couple months? Holy crap -- is it March?! Close.) and spent a long time surfing the internet for some way I could calculate how much food to prepare, which of course I stumbled upon today. Also observe Real Simple's neato new website.

I'm in hypochondriac mode. I know it's not meningitis. Might be strep or flu or sinuses or a bad week.

And there are really no words to express the grief, sorrow, concern, shock, disappointment, etc., I felt last night. An excerpt from my conversation with Lee during half-time:
Me: I've decided that my least favorite three-word phrase ever is, "Another Kentucky turnover."
Lee: So I guess this makes your least favorite five-word phrase, "And another turnover from Porter."

Wednesday, February 25, 2009


Just a few thoughts on Lent as it gets underway today...

Instead of giving up chocolates/sodas/TV/Facebook/snacks I'm doing the Lenten Challenge at Busted Halo. If you're into giving things up for Lent, this might be a fun thing to do since it changes every day and is accompanied by a Facebook support group called the "Slip Support Station."

I've been thinking a lot about Lent and what I hope to accomplish and other personal spiritual matters and one thing that keeps coming to mind is one of my favorite church songs. You can listen and read the lyrics here. Keep scrolling down because the lyrics are under the ratings. I think verse four might be favorite:
Will you love the ‘you’ you hide
If I but call your name?
Will you quell the fear inside
And never be the same?
Will you use the faith you’ve found
To reshape the world around,
Through my sight and touch and sound
In you and you in me?

As the Jews say at Yom Kippur, have an easy fast!

And on a completely different topic, depending on how widely you separate UK Basketball and Religion (Perhaps not too much?), GO CATS!!!!!! Pleasepleaseplease beat South Carolina since this appears to be -- dare I say it?! -- a "must win."

Friday, February 20, 2009


So earlier this week I did a post on FOCA and this neat anti-FOCA site. However, according to my pastor's blog, there really isn't much need for concern, at least not regarding this "bill." So I don't really mean to retract any of the feelings I shared about abortion, but I've learned some more about FOCA and where it actually currently stands in Congress so I'm just further illuminating the situation.

In other news, I've found some neato new YouTube videos! Yay!

Tuesday, February 17, 2009

Katie's Top Headlines 2/17/09

Cheaters never win! A cautionary tale for anyone considering taking on multiple mistresses, especially during a global recession.

I try to keep an open mind about art. I feel that people have a right to make whatever movie or book they want to. However, I have some reservations about Pride and Prejudice and Zombies and, as I just learned, Predators vs. Jane Austen. I would like to note that just because you, Mr. Furnish, might not enjoy Jane Austen, does not mean that she is "done-to-death." There still seem to be plenty of consumers who love and appreciate her work.

When Rainn Wilson isn't acting as my beloved Dwight Shrute, he writes some excellent commentary on religious persecution in Iran.

Apparently surgeons are now tweeting. I'm surprised I haven't already seen this on Grey's Anatomy. Anyways, I think it's a brilliant idea. They say they're doing it to give patients a better idea of what's involved in the surgery, some scientific blah-blah-blah, but as a paranoid loved-one, I like the idea that Twitter could help me receive more frequent updates if someone I loved was being operated on. Twitter births might be fun too.

Monday, February 16, 2009


I am often politically wishy-washy but one thing I stay consistent on is my feelings that abortion is pretty horrible and should not happen. (Unless the mother's life is at risk.) (Okay, I'm kind of starting to think that perhaps in instances of rape and/or other horrible sexual crimes, perhaps, after counseling and making all the options known, I might be okay with someone legally having an abortion, but I still think they should reallyreallyreally consider adoption and I frequently pray for an end to abortion because it's reallyreally horrible all the time.) This is why I'm so excited about this new website I found: What the FOCA?! I found this site through this blog which does an excellent job of explaining the awesomeness of WTF?!
Not only do I love the operation because its a cause that’s obviously near and dear to my heart but because finally…FINALLY…someone in the pro-life movement realized that their message was totally irrelevant to anyone born after the year their websites were designed, 1995, and decided to tailor their campaign to the culture by co-opting something just about anyone under the age of 30 is familiar with.

I love the pro-life movement, but sometimes I think that in the world of politics, which should be separate from religion, absolutely ruling out abortion 100% is not feasible. This is why I think a lot of the focus of pro-lifers should be on preventing the reasons women seek abortions, preventing the most heinous kinds of abortions, and improving other options (Yay adoption!). I'm really happy that this site is taking a much more practical, and mildly humorous, approach to it's pro-life message as opposed to splashing images of Jesus and fetuses everywhere. (Not that I don't love Jesus very much but he does not always rouse rational support for legislation.)

Some things that I would like to point about FOCA that I feel are reasons EVERYONE should dislike it (BTW, these facts are taken from the nifty WTF T-shirts):
  • FOCA would nullify the laws that ensure that abortionists are qualified physicians.
  • FOCA would repeal the Partial Birth Abortion Ban, which most people support.
  • FOCA would eliminate safety regulations for abortion clinics.
  • FOCA would allow abortions after viability. (Really!?!!)
As I was typing the above I became curious as to what in this bill anyone would support. So I decided to read a paragraph from the pro-FOCA webpage. Apparently they just want to make sure that everyone in the future will always be able to have an abortion. How kind, making sure that your daughters, granddaughters, great-granddaughters can abort their daughters. People can already have abortions and it's looking unlikely that abortions will ever be 100% off the table so chill out! And although I have a limited understanding of the workings of government, I'm pretty sure there is no such thing that anyone can do to ensure that a certain piece of legislation lasts forever. There's always some way to appeal or ammend.

On a lighter note, I've always credited this video with the start of "WTF?!" (as it relates to the f*bomb and not abortion legislation) and it is a pretty awesome video:

This is perhaps the first Internet video I ever really loved. This came out before YouTube. I feel so old.

Saturday, February 14, 2009

Valentine's Day Treats

A special message from the pets

A few leftovers from my Valentine's baking (I thought they were cute, although I'm still working on my frosting technique.)

cute comic
a cautionary (and humorous) tale
a favorite love poem

Friday, February 13, 2009

Guilty Pleasures

Let's start celebrating Valentine's Day a little early by indulging in some guilty pleasures. No, not the cupcakes I brought to work today, but The Bachelor.

I would like to note that some people consider me to be an intelligent person and I like to think that I'm reasonably intelligent myself, but oh the crappy lame things that capture my attention and brain power!

I would also like to note that I had mostly given up on reality dating shows (other than the occasional episode of Flavor of Love). However, my brother-in-law knows one of the bachelors from Deanna's season of The Bachelorette so I watched it out of curiousity to see how he did. By episode two I fell in love with Jason and had to keep watching in hopes that Jason would win Deanna's heart. (I mean really, what kind of crazy picks a poorly-styled snowboarder over Jason?! Clearly Jason's better off without that big hot mess.) When I heard that Jason would be the next Bachelor I had to tune in to keep cheering him on in his pursuit of TV love. I feel that this justifies my watching of the show. It does not justify the amount of time I spend thinking about the show.

I'm going to blame the co-worker who recently showed me the link I've already shared. Several people have over-analyzed the finale previews to determine that Melissa wins (yay!) this season based on her pinky ring and moles. I found this interesting so I began searching the internet to see what other kinds of information might be out there about the finale. As crazy as I (or you) might think I am, it does not compare to the crazy Bachelor fans out there. Some of the craziest existing theories include:
  • Molly's pregnant.
  • The entire show is being presenting backward?! How does that even happen?!
  • He gets back with Deanna, which has been denied by people who "know."

One of my favorite sources is Reality Steve. He has sources who have confirmed the ending to him and now he's giving out some of the most random hints that I don't even try to figure out. Things I have concluded from what I've read is that the shocker isn't who he picks but the how. There's some sort of crazy storyline (a timeline perhaps?) to the final rose ceremony that is completely "new" and "shocking." (We'll see about that.) There's a "real" love story here or something. ABC even needs an additional follow-up show, so now there are two rounds of After The Final Rose.

If you two want to stalk Internet lore about the upcoming Bachelor finale, below are some places I recommend. However, it might be best just to keep your sanity and gear up for a new round of American Idol.

Reality Steve
Reality TV World (They just posted Naomi's interview!)
Bachelor Love
The Bachelor (crazy!) Message Boards
Info on the After the Final Rose x2

Monday, February 9, 2009

Best Money I Ever Spent

Yes, I bought some friends. About 140ish of them. And it was the best purchase I ever made.

Yesterday was Sorority Bid Day at Centre. Looking at the pictures posted on Facebook, we did pretty good. Seeing the familiar class photos, the ridiculous costumes, the diamonds (<>Alpha Delta Pi!<>) made me really excited. Not only is the chapter that I loved (still love!) for four years thriving, but it brought back all my happy sorority girl memories.

Going to college, sororities weren't a huge priority. Centre doesn't rush until February so you have a whole semester to get a good feeling for your Greek options. My attitude was that if there was a sorority I wanted to join, I would join, but I wasn't going to do it just to say I was in a sorority. It took about two weeks (Was it even that long?) before I knew I wanted to be an ADPi. They were classy. I saw them out partying with each other and they had a good time without being trashy. They were well respected. They were smart and campus leaders. I had never met an ADPi I didn't like, and everytime I met one I just wanted to meet more.

I remember signing my bid card. Since coming to Centre in September, I had made five really great friends. One, didn't rush that semester. Another, was sitting in the ADPi house wondering how I would sign my bid card. She was also the one who started my ADPi enthusiasm. The other three were there with me, signing bid cards. I knew that they were all going to a different chapter, but I knew that the ADPi house was home and they knew that too. I also considered that I already had five amazing friends and no matter what I put down on that slip of paper, they would still be there for me and they would still be as amazing and wonderful, but I had made up my mind. I wanted to wear those Greek letters -- Alpha Delta Pi -- because they meant something to me. They were a group of women I respected and I wanted to be a part of that.

Yes, it's a little weird when a group of 60 women, 50 you've never even met before, suddenly start waving at you all the time, hugging you, inviting you to hang out, offering to sell you their textbooks at great rates, and would essentially do anything for you just because you've pledged a common sorority, but it's also amazing. Yes, essentially all sororities are the same, it just depends on who comprises the current active membership. So yes, there is a level of superficiality to it all. But there is also something very real. You share a common experience and a common ritual, that cannot be broken. It creates a special bond. Not to say that this bond demeans other friendships that are not based on letters of the Greek alphabet, but being in a sorority is a special kind of friendship that I treasure. We lose touch along the way and to be honest there are some I never liked that much anyone. But in thinking of my sisters, I cannot help but think of one line from a Christina Rosetti poem, "There is no friend like a sister..."

The women of Eta Omega changed my life for the better 110%. I would not trade my memories of them, and the memories we still make, for anything in the world. No matter how happy I am today or how blessed I am in this current part of my life, a little part of me will always be sitting in my sweatpants in the basement of the ADPi house, with ice cream and cookie dough, surrounded by some of the most beautiful women I have ever known.

Happy Bid Day, Eta Omega!
<> OBIC <>

Thursday, February 5, 2009

Happy Endings

This post contains spoilers for Once, Memoirs of a Geisha and (possibly) this season of The Bachelor. If you don't want to know the endings of this movie, book or reality wonder, perhaps you should stop reading now.

I've always been a fan of happy endings. In fact, I think I have ruined certain novels for myself by letting the lack of a happy ending get in the way of my otherwise positive feelings for the novel (like Portrait of a Lady. Of course, I stayed up until 3 a.m. finishing it for class so I don't really remember what happened and I thought I was smart enough to know better than to expect joy from Henry James, but whatever. The book deserves a re-read.). As I've gotten older I've started to appreciate the bittersweet and/or the miserable endings. I've also realized that books without happy endings tend to earn more respect and we tend to view them as better quality. Think about the GREAT writers: Faulkner, Hemingway, Joyce...not too heavy on the fairy tale endings. The "greater" pieces of Shakespeare are his tragedies. My beloved Jane Austen is often criticized for how happy her books are. (Apparently no one's read Mansfield Park.) "Let other pens dwell on guilt or misery," Austen said. I've been reflecting on if a happy or not-so-happy ending is better since I expierienced one of each the other night and was dissatisfied with both.

First, I watched the movie Once. Once does not necessarily have an unhappy ending, but it leaves many questions unanswered and the sexual tension is not resolved. Girl decides to try to make things work with her husband (Normally I totally support this, but at the start of the movie they were separated and her husband was living in another country and she was so great with the Guy.) and Guy goes to London with the demo they've just finished to try to get signed by a record label and make things work with his cheating ex. Girl and Guy don't even kiss. I was disappointed. Overall though, really cute movie! Top-notch soundtrack.

Then I stayed up past my bedtime finishing Memoirs of a Geisha. Memoirs actually had a very happy ending. The impossible happens and Sayuri gets everything she wants. She spends the whole book going on about how foolish it was of her to hope that the Chairman wanted her and then he does. Sayuri's foolish plan to have Nobu discover her with the General (so he won't want to take her as his mistress so she can still be available if the Chairman ever cares) actually works. Not entirely as planned, but then it works. It was crazy. It was as if Pip had discovered that Miss Havisham was his benefactoress all along and he was destined to be with Stella. I found this all odd and a little lame, but I don't know why. I'm the one who sees no problem with Mr. Darcy arranging Lydia and Wickham's marriage, or Rachel getting off the plane, or the entirety of When Harry Met Sally. I feel very hypocritical for my scepticism about Memoirs but I have always had fairly fickle tastes.

In impending happy endings...
Down to four ladies on The Bachelor and I'm cheering for Melissa. Thanks to an over-zealous viewer, evidence has been revealed that my cheers are rightly placed!

Tuesday, February 3, 2009

Ice Storms Suck

This past week of my life has been absorbed in the Ice Storm. Luckily we only went four days without power and we had an abundance of help and shelter from friends and family. It still sucked though. A lot.

Now the power is restored, the fridge is restocked (The restocking process led to a very happy discovery: Tagalong ice cream is back!!), and I think I've gotten rid of that lingering stale apartment odor, made worse by my precious pooch's indoor pooping as a copying mechanism for ice storm anxiety.

It's been a week since I last blogged and I had been hoping to do some fancy series (by my standards) on the future of books and a liberal arts education, but now that I've had sporadic internet access for a week I'm feeling very unmotivated. So here's a new favorite Internet video and I guess I'll do that 25 Things Facebook Phenomenon.

1. One of my favorite things about reading the NYT is that if you highlight a word and click on it, it will tell you what the word means.
2. I need to work on expanding my vocabulary so I don't need to do the above so much.
3. Starting Wednesday, Aunt Billie is teaching me how to sew.
4. I want to learn how to sew so I can make myself some Regency dresses.
5. I want Melissa to win The Bachelor. Molly is my #2 pick.
6. Despite my intense love for Pride and Prejudice, I think Sense and Sensibility and Persuasion have more satisfying endings because Elinor and Anne suffer the most. One might also add Mansfield Park to this except I can't get past my extreme dislike for Fanny Price. She's just so boring!
7. I've had a crush on Tom Selleck since I was like 5 years old. It started with Three Men and a Little Baby.
8. I have 233 movies in my Netflix queue. #233 is Memoirs of a Geisha which will probably move up to #1 soon since I'm almost done reading the book. That will but Addicted to Love at the bottom.
9. For my 7th grade school picture I wore plaid dress shorts with panty hose. Eww.
10. When I was little I hated that my legal name was Katherine. I thought it sounded too prissy, like a lame princess name. Needless to say several of my opinions have changed since then.
11. I waited until I was drunk to tell Lee I voted for Kerry. Fortunately, he didn't really care.
12. In my Philosophy of Art class in college we read an essay on "artistic dropouts." I am a writing artistic dropout. One of the reasons I started this blog was to get over some of my feelings of writing inadequacy.
13. I still miss London. A lot.
14. My best friend just had a baby, which I hoped would calm me down in my eagerness to have kids, but it did not. Not that this will change our baby planning any, but I have started reading mommy blogs which does creep Lee out a little.
15. Speaking of babies, I've been reading about natural child birth which is something I could easily change my mind on, but it's something I've been thinking about a lot. Basically, I think the decision will come down to deciding which do I fear most: needles or pushing a human out of my vagina.
16. Speaking of London and babies, I have considered naming a daughter Endsleigh. Lee doesn't approve so expect a puppy named Endsleigh in our future.
17. Speaking of fears. My biggest fear is falling: off a ladder, off a step, out of a plane, big falls, little falls. I hate the feeling of falling. (Falling in love is acceptable though.)
18. I knew Lee and I had potential when he told me that he always bought a new belt with new shoes so he would have a matching set. Hott.
19. The first book that made me cry was Where the Red Fern Grows.
20. The first movie that made me cry was Casper.
21. I'm going to guess that the first time a TV show made me was cry was when Luna died on One Life to Live.
22. I can only dog paddle. I never made it far in swimming lessons because I couldn't dive. It totally freaked me out. This goes back to my fear of falling.
23. I go to Mass every week. I don't necessarily think I'm a great Catholic or Christian or anything (I try.), but I don't miss Mass. Since my First Communion in second grade I have missed Mass approximately five times (including Holy Days of Observation) and I only think two of those really count. (What can I do if I'm sick, don't speak Italian, or the British Rail system is experiencing major delays?!)
24. Ugh, two more. What are these supposed to be anyway? Interesting things? Unknown things? Umm...My greatest accomplishment in life is finding the love of my life and marrying him. This will only be topped by successfully staying married forever (I have every confidence that we will but at 4 months I don't know if it's something to brag about yet.) and raising kids who will not be juvenile delinquents and hopefully contribute something positive to the world.
25. I've never cooked seafood. I want to start cooking more seafood.