Having homeschooled kids has proven to be challenging and enjoyable at the same time. I’m finding myself re-learning skills long gone idle, and in some cases learning new topics I’m fairly sure I was never exposed to when I was in school. Verb tenses are a good example; I of course knew the past, present and future, but if I was ever taught about past perfect, present perfect and future perfect, it was apparently so brief that I remember nothing of it.

Grammar is interesting to be sure, and I’m glad for the chance to refresh and refine my knowledge of it, but mathematics is where I feel like I belong. This year has been a treat for me, since one of my kids is taking high-school geometry. When I was in school, I believe geometry and trigonometry were taught together, and neither in much depth. Certain things seem familiar to be sure, such as how use the Pythagorean Theorem, but so much of what is in this new geometry class is completely new to me. I find myself engrossed in the subject, spending hours at a time working through entire chapters. How to use the Pythagorean Theorem is a small thing; how to prove it in 10 different ways is real understanding.

This new thirst for knowledge pulls me in all directions. Where to go next? Learn to speak Chinese? Learn a new programming language? Design a mobile app? Write a novel? The possibilities are endless, are they not?

Considerate behavior gone by the wayside

I used to work on the family farm until I was around 22 years old. Farming almost invariably involves taking large slow-moving equipment out on roads – usually gravel, but sometimes blacktop or highway. One thing I was always aware of was how much danger I was in, since I wasn’t moving with normal traffic speeds. Once I nearly got hit by a car when they crested a hill behind me, saw me too late, and slid to a stop.

What I was more aware of was how I was affecting normal traffic. As someone travelling far under normal speeds, I would gradually collect a line of cars behind me eager to reach their work or homes. Many times it could be a mile or more before a safe passing area would open up. So, I would be CONSIDERATE. I would watch for an opportunity to pull off into a driveway or onto a firm shoulder and let the train of cars get by. I was safer for them, and even safer for me.

Today’s farmers apparently have no consideration for others. I’ve followed tractors and combines for several miles as they zip past side roads, parking lots in small towns, and driveways without a second glance. Look, I realize that you’re working at your job, and you feel that your job is important. That doesn’t mean you own the road, and it’s no excuse for rudeness. Take the 30 seconds to pull over and let the backed up traffic past. It’s the considerate and safe thing to do.

Does a Leading Man have to be Manly?

I was listening to Howard Stern interview Zachary Quinto recently. Quinto played Spock in the 2009 Star Trek and also in the 2013 Star Trek Into Darkness. He also came out of the closet in 2011, announcing that he is gay.

I don’t find Quinto particularly interesting, or the fact that he’s gay. What was interesting was the discussion that ensued with Stern about the tendency to not cast gay men into leading man roles. Stern’s a fairly big liberal, so it wasn’t surprising that he thought such a bias unreasonable.

Sticking with the Star Trek theme, let’s think about Captain James T. Kirk, played by William Shatner. The Captain Kirk character is basically a stud, a ladies man, a manly man. He’s not afraid to go after the girl, seduce her, and leave her wanting more. His attraction is so strong that women leave their men for him.

When we watch movies or TV shows, we want to get into the action and identify with the characters. Today they call it “immersive”. We learn to love some characters and hate others. We imagine their pain and revel in their happiness. A successful actor makes their character come to life, and makes them believable. Wouldn’t it have been hard for Shatner to make us believe he was really a studly womanizer if we knew in real life he was gay? In the back of our minds, when Kirk was kissing some woman, we’d know that the Shatner part of him wasn’t enjoying it at all.

Can a gay actor do a good job acting straight? I’m sure he can, just as a straight actor can do a good job acting gay. But if you’re casting someone for a straight leading man, wouldn’t you choose the MOST believable actor to play the part?

The symbolism of the Oreo

I recently heard a friend relating a conversation he’d had about which was better, the cookie part of the Oreo or the filling?
I thought about it, and about how each part is less than it could be without the other. The Oreo as a whole is greater than the sum of the parts. Then I suddenly realized that the Oreo can be seen as a symbol for the ideal relationship between a man and a woman. Bear with me here.

The hard cookie exterior is the man, protecting the soft sweet filling that is the woman. Each have their own qualities that make them different, and yet those qualities complement each other. On their own they are good, but when combined they change from being just two good things to being a new wonderful whole. Separate them and they are back to just being good. Like the cookie and filling, man and woman complete each other.


Time to buy Barilla pasta!

Hat Tip: Daily Caller

An Italian businessman says the traditional family is important to his business, and the loons are out in force trying to punish him:

It looks like I’m going to be buying Barilla pasta when I buy groceries tomorrow. Not only do I agree with Mr. Barilla when he says, “For us the concept of the sacred family remains one of the basic values of the company,” I support his right to say it.

What’s stupid about the boycotters’ reaction is that Barilla never said anything bad in the interview about homosexuals. He even said he supported gay marriage. Not only that, if you read more about the original interview, the context of the questions were surrounding how they advertise and market their products. He was really referring to how they feel that their target audience is the traditional family, and that therefore they use traditional families in their marketing.


I think, therefore I am. At least I think I am.