Kirk Israel's commonplace and blog. Quotes and links daily since 2001.
Cleaning the "blog this" part of my todo list I found this:
A friend asked the other day what percentage of people I went to youth group with "deconstructed" and what percentage remained evangelical. As I thought about it, I realized that for the most part it was the kids who took their faith the most seriously who eventually walked away.

Those of us who tearfully promised that we would follow Jesus anywhere eventually followed him out the door. The Queer kids, more than anyone, learned exactly what it meant to work out our faith with fear and trembling.

They told us to read the Bible and take it seriously and then mocked us for becoming "social justice warriors."

Now they're warning us not to deconstruct to the point of meaninglessness.

But they took a chisel to God until he fit in a box. They "deconstructed" the concept of love until it allowed them to tolerate sexual abuse, celebrate white supremacy, and look away from kids in cages.

Some of us got to where we are because we took it all to heart. We took the most foundational elements of our faith to their natural conclusions. Folks who deconstruct evangelicalism aren't drop-outs; they're graduates.
via headspace-hotel tumblr with obaewankenope's observation that
"But they took a chisel to God until he fit into a box" is probably the RAWEST line I've ever read in my life.
And while I'm not queer, just an ally, a lot of this process reflects what happened to me. The aspects of God I deeply absorbed: But the prevalence of other religions - in particular Islam - seemed incompatible with any configuration of a universal God.

And frankly, maybe this was just the affable nerd I was, jealous of the fun time other kids were having, but most of my fellow church teens seemed pretty lax in their lifestyles relative to me.

I mean, looking back with maturity, those seemingly lax believers (who also seemed to indulge more deeply in the catharsis of the altar call at the end of church band camp) probably had it right. I mean, there's a part of me that is still startled by practicing Christians who shack up before marriage! Or swear a lot.

Maybe if I had grown up with a faith that leaned more into the mystery and not knowing and was a little more relaxed on the lifestyle thing... I think the Catholics have something going with the idea of confession, even if the idea of being reliant on the institution to save oneself from hellfire has been all too readily abused. Catholics - again, at least some Catholics - also seem to have a less literalist view of things, and accepting mystery and weirdness as a part of It all.
"Salvation Army" among the reasons Reasons for admission to a West Virginian lunatic asylum.

I don't know if it's worse to make a 'Army joke or a West Virginia joke.
Your teeth are bones, that live outside...

Some beautiful observations on tree communities and matriarch trees
Walking in the cold this morning, back from the tire place. Got some iced coffee from Quebrada. Always fun to witness your iced coffee get more iced!

Love is a direction and not a state of the soul.
Simone Weil


On my devblog, I wrote about my new daily todo tracker and what I've learned about the usefulness of using different methods of recording/tracking todos: ad hoc + soon vs daily habits vs long term + projects. Trying to put them all in one todo app was clogging things up and adding a strain to my life.
House passes bill to award Congressional Gold Medal to Willie O'Ree, the first Black NHL player Just found out about Willie O'Ree, first Black player in the NHL. Glad to hear he was a Bruin! Celtics were the first NBA team to draft an African American too. (Unlike the Red Sox who were notably last to integrate)

It still smarts when I hear SNL jokes and what not about Boston as the most racist. But the segregation of cities is still pretty obvious when you walk around... basically White folks here seem like a split of conservatives who think America is past racism (I mean excepting the ones who purposefully lean into racism) and liberals who assume they're personally too smart to be racist.

What happened? Why is internet punk now all about artificially creating scarcity?

Remember when Napster was punk because it knocked down the walls of scarcity and access created by record companies?

We went from "fuck you, capitalism" to "let's make more capitalism."

Live every moment as not to regret what you are about to do.
Mickey Mouse
Is that an actual quote? I am really wondering what the context of that possibly was!

My dad's name was given phonetically as Ha-gu-yah-cla-ga-hus. (My mom was A-wan-ghan)
But that way of getting songs and dances, I guess that's way past our stage. I guess we're too civilized nowadays, cause at that time, see, they practically lived right with the animals and out in the woods all the time. They didn't have no automobiles or airplanes flying around or anything of that sort, and they were so close to nature, I guess that's how they probably got to get some of these songs together. A lot of stories, different stories, has been told of how these songs originated, and all of it starts with them coming from the different animals that were roaming the big forest at that time. And in the mountains and places like that, along the rivers, you can hear all these different kind of songs that was made up. Then as it came along, these persons that had heard these songs had started handing them down to the younger generation, up till today. Like me learning these songs: I learnt that from me going to all these different dances when I was a young lad, just a young kid at that time, just a little boy. Well, I started dancing the Eagle Dance when I was just about eight or nine years old. So now you can see how we carry our religion and traditions and all that. Most of us that had lived right along where the longhouse is, still believe in this religion, and we try to keep up the traditions as our older folks had done years before, and I think that's just the way it's been handed down all down through the years, from generation to generation, as far as I know of.
Richard Johnny John (mentioned in the clipping) on the Seneca song tradition.
via an interview with Jerome Rothenberg: Parts 1 + 2, Part 3. The interview also speaks of using song for environmental protest (against a dam) so I'm sort of pleased to identify a rough parallel with some of my musical work, even as I realize musical protest is always an uphill climb with clear successes thin on the ground.
How to give an MLK jr Day speech...
Measure with a micrometer. Mark with chalk. Cut with an axe.
Internet Wisdom
I feel like I've quoted this a lot, surprised I couldn't find it in my blog history.
I hope people in the Arlington/Somerville/Cambridge area appreciate how I helped ward of major snowfall this last storm by having purchased a new snowblower after the last snow we had.

Murphy can be your friend and ally once you appreciate his mysterious ways.
Good overview of symptoms of the new COVID variant, especially the scratchy throat. (Like I'm always tired and always have some allergy phlegm, so it's good to be knowing what else to look for.)
I wanted to give you something --
no stone, clay, bracelet,
no edible leaf could pass through.
Even a molecule's fragrance by then too large.
Giving had been taken, as you soon would be.
Still, I offered the puffs of air shaped to meaning.
They remained air.
I offered memory on memory,
but what is memory that dies with the fallible inks?
I offered apology, sorrow, longing. I offered anger.
How fine is the mesh of death. You can almost see through it.
I stood on one side of the present, you stood on the other.
Jane Hirshfield, "The Present"

We often have to explain to young people why study is useful. It's pointless telling them that it's for the sake of knowledge, if they don't care about knowledge. Nor is there any point in telling them that an educated person gets through life better than an ignoramus, because they can always point to some genius who, from their standpoint, leads a wretched life. And so the only answer is that the exercise of knowledge creates relationships, continuity, and emotional attachments. It introduces us to parents other than our biological ones. It allows us to live longer, because we don't just remember our own life but also those of others. It creates an unbroken thread that runs from our adolescence (and sometimes from infancy) to the present day. And all this is very beautiful.
Umberto Eco
Life is all about maintenance. Your body, your house, your relationships, everything requires constant never ending maintenance.
But I think the rejoinder is: "we are all foot soldiers in the war against entropy"
Therapists Share 'Weird' Things People Are Scared To Tell Them--Even Though They're Normal Interesting. However "abnormal" you might think you are, you are more than likely not alone...

I think the idea that there are different parts of you (especially the ones provoking unwanted thoughts and desires) and why you as a whole might be accountable for the actions of these parts, and you might even have SOME limited ability to shape and guide them in the long run, they can not be conflated with you as a whole.
good to ponder on today: Most of you have no idea what Martin Luther King actually did

On my devblog, the zen of palm, a browser-based palmos emulator, and the handspring. Interesting learning the Palm UI was mocked up in hypercard.