Two items of interest from the Anglican world today:
– The Episcopal Diocese of Pittsburgh, a conservative diocese often critical of the Episcopal Church’s national leadership, voted to leave the ECUSA yesterday. The diocese will now become part of the Anglican Province of the Southern Cone. As always, BabyBlue has the full skinny here. Just for kicks, here’s how the vote went:
Clergy Total Clergy: 159
Voted Yes to Realign: 121
Voted No to Realign: 33
Clergy vote for Realignment
Laity Total Laity: 191
Voted Yes to Realign: 119
Voted No to Realign: 69
Laity vote for Realignment
– The grave of John Henry Newman was exhumed this week, and was found to be… empty! Newman was one of the most important bishops in the Church of England in the 19th century. Newman was one of the founders of, and the most vocal advocates for, the Oxford Movement, a 19th century movement within the Church of England that called for a more Catholic interpretation and celebration of the Eucharist. The Oxford Movement invented modern Anglo-Catholicism, and for that I am grateful. Unfortunately, the Oxford Movement wasn’t orthodox enough for Newman, for he left the Church of England and became a Roman Catholic in 1845, eventually rising to the post of Cardinal. The Roman Church wanted to move Newman’s remains to a place of honor as he is following the official path to sainthood. It was hoped that Newman was buried in a lead coffin; unfortunately, this does not appear to be the case, as only “brass, wooden and cloth artifacts” remained. The good cardinal is thought to have decomposed completely.
Mama is a band I know next to nothing about. And it’s easy to not know anything about a band when their name is “Mama” and the album the following track comes from is named “Blue”. You try googling that! I tried “Mama”, “blue Mama”, “Mama blue” “Mama band”, “Mama electronic” and “Mama chillout”… only to come up with a bunch of websites about postpartum depression! The band’s almost as hard to Google as The The, the reigning champs of “bands that are unable to be googled”.
Anyway, I finally had some luck with “Mama ambient” – the second link Google returns is the band’s MySpace page. Apparently, the band is from Athens (the old one) and has at least one member, Manolis Zografakis. And he was once in a punk band, but now does electronic music. Oh, and he has 1213 friends on MySpace as of Friday.
I found Blue at a recommended site and thought I’d give it a whirl. The disc is all about the “different shades of blue in human existence” or someting like that. I don’t know and I don’t care… ‘cos I like it! Lisa said that it sounds like “Weather Channel music for cool people”… and in a way, she’s right. It’s first rate electronic chill-out music, so if you like that kind of thing, give it a listen!
OJ Simpson was found guilty of all charges this evening. He will be sentenced to 15 years to life. He could die in jail. The verdict comes “13 years to the day after Simpson was cleared of murdering his ex-wife and a friend of hers in Los Angeles in one of the most sensational trials of the 20th century”.
If you’re a football fan, you probably know that people have been debating for years about the “best way” to have an overtime period in tied games.
The NFL uses a “sudden death” system. There is a coin toss, and the team that wins the toss almost always opts to receive the kick from the team that loses the toss. 15 minutes are put on the clock, teams are issued two timeouts, and the team that loses the coin toss kicks off to the team that won the toss. The game continues as if “fifth quarters” were a normal part of the game, except that the first team to score points in any fashion wins.
For years, people argued that this system wasn’t fair. The team that won the toss, they argued, could simply drive the ball down the field and kick a field goal to win.
For this reason, the NCAA adopted a different system for college football. In this case, there is a coin toss, and the team that wins the toss can opt to go first or second. The ball is then placed on the 20 yard line and the game clock abandoned. The team on offense can try for a first down, throw to the end zone for a touchdown, or can simply come right out and attempt a field goal. Once the offense has either scored or turned the ball over (either on downs or via turnover), the other team gets the ball at the same 20 yard line, and has to either match the first team’s score (in which case another “overtime period” is played), or exceed the first team’s score (in which case the second team wins). If the game should exceed three overtime periods, teams must attempt a two-point conversion after scoring a touchdown.
Banks might be collapsing, Wall Street may be crumbling… but all is well now that Pushing Daisies is back on ABC!
If you’ve never seen the show, the plot is like this: Ned is a man with a special gift: he can bring the dead back to life. There are two caveats to his power, however: 1) the dead can only be alive for 1 minute, or else something else of equal “life value” dies; and 2) once Ned touches a dead person twice, that person is dead forever. Ned discovered his gift in his hometown of Coeur d’Coeurs when his golden retriever Digby accidentally runs into the path of an 18 wheeler. Later that same day, Ned’s mother dies of an aneurysm. Ned touches her, which brings her back to life. Unfortunately, in doing so he kills the father of Charlotte Charles (“Chuck”), his next door neighbor and childhood sweetheart. Ned also accidentally discovers caveat #2 when his mother kisses him goodnight that same evening, killing her forever. Ned’s father then sends him away to the Longborough School for Boys, where, in bouts of loneliness and depression, Ned tries to “recreate” his mother’s love by baking pies. Ned eventually turns this talent into “The Pie Hole”, a pie restaurant in an unnamed city. There he employs a waitress named Olive Snook, a tiny blonde that’s secretly in love with Ned. Unfortunately, The Pie Hole doesn’t make a lot of money, so Ned has teams up with Emerson Cod, a private investigator. Ned and Emerson go to morgues and funeral homes, where Ned touches dead people to find out who killed them. Emerson then collects the reward money and splits it with Ned. In the pilot episode, Emerson and Ned find out that Chuck has been murdered whilst on a cruise. Ned touches her just to talk to her, and can’t bring himself to touch her again, causing the corrupt funeral home director to drop dead. Ned and Chuck live happily ever after… even though they can never touch again, and even though the two have some serious secrets between each other.
As you may know, there is a gas shortage in the southeastern United States at the moment. Gas is in short supply in Atlanta, Greenville, and my adopted hometown of Charlotte. If you’re looking for gas in the Charlotte area, I thought you might appreciate a couple of resources provided by the Charlotte Observer:
Here is a Google Map with gas stations listed. Pink pins are stations that have gas; blue pins are out.
Here is a Twitter feed called #cltgas that has updated lists of gas stations that have gas available.
On a recent vacation, I picked up a pack of these:
Yes – they’re deep fried peanuts! Basically, you take raw peanuts in the shell and cook them in peanut oil for 8-10 minutes, then sprinkle them with salt. They’re absolutely delicious! They taste like your basic roasted peanut, but have a hint of that that nice “fried” taste that satisfies so well by hitting every single one of those umami taste buds on the way down.
Even cooler: you can eat the shell, too! Deep frying tenderizes the shells and infuses them with a delicious peanutty taste! So you just pop the whole thing in your mouth and enjoy some deep fried goodness! Still, many might find the shells a bit too… fiborous for comfort.
Deep fried peanuts are delicious… if not cardiologist-approved!