Sunday, September 13, 2015

Hey, Everybody - Biscuits!

You may or may not have noticed that my logorrhea has been somewhat constipated lately... Whether that is for good or ill is a matter of opinion, but in MY opinion, it's, well... ill. I mean, the cause is good, but the effect is ill. 

Mmmm... drop biscuits...
And the cause? I've started a "real job!"* That's right, a 9 to 5. Okay, it's a 9-2:30, four days a week, but still... so I've been learning the processes, and also trying to keep up with my one other freelance client, AND dealing with the start of another school year - Bill's in middle school! Ack!** 

Anyway, the effect has been, as I was saying, that I have no time to write... And the effect of THAT is that I am bursting with crap to say. And the effect of THAT is that I'm not going to go into any one thought in a huge amount of detail. Instead, I'm just going to drop'em out a blob at a time like drop-biscuit dough... And you can just leave'em on the pan, or stick it in the oven, bake'em and eat'em with butter. So... Here goes...

Kristen Wiig in Welcome to Me
Movies I saw: Welcome to Me with Kristen Wiig. If you have Netflix, you can stream this - it's kind of a painful but entertaining story about a mentally ill woman who wins the lottery and pays a production company to produce and air a show called Welcome to Me in which she comes in on a swan boat then talks about herself and her interests, airs old grievances, stages dramatic reenactments of occasions when people wronged her, and does a whole lot of other cringe-inducing stuff. Of course I watched it like I was watching a train wreck - it's easy to watch stuff like that because it makes us feel so sane! But at the same time I realized that I too want people to pay attention to me. To know who I am. To be on my side. Don't most people? Isn't this blog kinda like a "welcome to me" show? Well, it is, but it isn't. I mean, my intention in talking about myself is to show the reader how an ordinary person wrestles with God and His Word and His will in everyday life. So, ideally, it's a "welcome to God" show.

Movies I saw: The film Danny Collins presents Al Pacino as an aging rock star receives a 30-year-old, previously undelivered letter written to him by John Lennon. In it, Lennon tells the struggling young musician that he is there to help him deal with impending fame, gives him his phone number, and ends with "What do you think about that, Danny Collins?" Danny then sets his course to reform his dissipated, artistically bereft lifestyle. And I thought - God has written just such a letter, given us His phone number, calls us by name and begs constantly for our response... And this should be life-changing. Is it? Only if we let it be. And honestly, I don't always. Also, in the movie, Danny reaches out to a son he had never met and starts working on his own music as opposed to the pop drivel he has become famous for. These are both good things, but in the end he must choose one over the other, and while people like me place a high value on artistic integrity, I think it's maybe family and people who get God's vote. That's my guess anyway.

Will Forte as The Last Man on Earth
TV series I saw: On The Last Man on Earth show, Will Forte plays one of a tiny settlement of folks in Tuscon after a horrible plague wipes out everyone else... It's like watching mankind struggle with the beginning of things, as if in a tiny garden of Eden. And Will Forte is there showing you all the fallen traits of mankind...  Always pushing for his own interests – the prettiest woman, the best stuff... Yea, he's pretty despicable. But he is also me. He's just acting on all stuff I'm thinking all the time. Who will free us from this body of sin?*** And speaking of which...

Sermons I heard: The best thing I heard in a sermon all summer was this concept: in the Old Testament, there were a lot of laws about what was clean and unclean. New clay pots? Clean. Carcasses of unclean animals? Unclean. And if the carcass touches the pot? Both unclean. But with the coming of Jesus, the cleanness of Christ cleanses everything it touches! So... Yay! 

BTO, baby - yeah!
Songs I a lo divino-ed: Despite the barren wasteland that is commercial radio these days, I still flip around on it while I'm driving because I love the random surprise of hearing a great song when I least expect it. So one day on my way to work I was feeling kind of like I'd never get the hang of all my new duties... and I heard the classic rock masterpiece by Msrs. Bachman and Turner, You Ain't Seen Nothin' Yet. And call me crazy, but I kinda felt like God was saying that to me... That the best is yet to come, you know. So just now I looked up the lyrics and had to laugh - I wonder if anyone has ever a lo divino-ed a song with the word devil in it. Now that I read it, it seems to be about a guy who went off with someone who wasn't good for him because he was taking what he could get, love-wise. And we do this, don't we? But really, we ain't seen nothin' yet, have we? We live on earth and we take what we can get – or enjoy what we have, but ... there's so much more... in terms of what God's working on for us both down the road in the great hereafter, can I get an amen?

Mavis Staples'll take you there.
Shows I saw: I just saw Mavis Staples, like an hour ago, and what a beautiful woman. She was part of the civil rights movement, we told Bill... And I was reminded again about how my problems are primarily what they call First World problems. Have I been refused service or accused of a crime just because of the color of my skin? Am I a refugee fleeing a despotic regime? Am I in danger of being sold as a sex slave? Absolutely not. Although I have been indirectly dissed because I am a woman, and a small, kind of girlish woman at that. Which is absolutely NOT the same thing. But even though what I consider my problems may be like a feather bed to some, every one of us longs for that place Mavis sings about in I'll Take You There - where ain't nobody cryin'... Which is another reference to that thing that's coming that's we ain't seen yet. 

Tailfeathers I shook: At the Mavis Staples show, my son Bill kept trying to clamp my arms down to keep me from dancing, but I. Just. Can't. Not. Dance. As evidenced by this video my husband posted of me dancing on stage at a recent Southern Culture on the Skids show. Yes, I'm 53 years old, and I HAVE to shake my ass. I have to. It's nothing personal against the teenager I'm embarrassing - it just has to happen. 

And that's all the drop biscuits I have for now - an even half-dozen. Bake'em. Eat'em. Wash'em down with a big glass of buttermilk. 

I work at Wallace Wade's house now!
*I'm working at Duke University as the Creative Director of their student newspaper - so far, I love working with the students, and the grown ups that work there are also, really kind and helpful. Plus, (for now) it's in a cool old house - Famous Duke coach Wallace Wade used to live in it!

**Last night I dreamed that I lost Bill. I couldn't find him anywhere! It was a real nightmare... I thought at first that it was because I was worrying that With all this new stuff going on, I'm worried I'm being somehow negligent. But I thought later that I'm worried about losing him to adolescence. Wahhhh......!

***Romans 7:24

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