azurelunatic: cameo-like portrait of <user name="azurelunatic"> in short blue hair.  (cameo)
I think the point is not that you should not be kind to random people you meet who you would have no other reason to be kind to because they might be an angel in disguise or whatever; I think it is that you should be kind to random people because you know they are an angel in disguise. Each and every one of them. No matter how unlikely. And true, one of them could be an angel of destruction. But still. That's the problem with that story that people point out -- why did the person treat the unexpected visitors so nicely? There was something special? Of course. That's the point. Keep doing that. It's the knowledge to see the random strangers for the angels they are, and treat them accordingly, that's needed. Of course they saw that the visitors were angels. Of course.

I'm ambivalent about the concept of panhandling. I know there are people who depend on it to survive. I know there are also people who misrepresent themselves and then go and do non-survival-oriented things. Either way, it hurts to see someone so very down on their luck. One thing I don't feel ambivalent about is offering apples to people who look like they're very hungry and could use some food that isn't fast or junk. Apples are good. I like it when I have apples to share.


In parts of the universe that are not the Bujold e-mail list, "pizza call" does not mean stop the fight. (YouTube 4/16/2007 Fenway Park.)


Went on a field trip with work. Saw the Body Worlds 3 exhibit at the Arizona Science Center. It was amazing. There was this pervasive hush at the beginning of it, and that continued for much of it. After the halfway mark, people started mingling and discussing and backtracking more, but there is this sense of awe at the contributions of all these people to this thing. I think I'm fortunate in that my empathy did not kick in.

The thing that I think amazed me most, and in the good, delighted way -- most museum things or art things that have items of even mildly approaching such delicacy and wonder have everything glassed in and tucked out of harm's way. The things like the examples of organs and bones were in glass boxes, yes, with labels and explanations. But the sculptured bodies were right there in the open, at human-level. There was no need to box them off. No one touched a thing. There was rapt, close, even reverent, examination -- but people had their hands at their sides, behind their backs, to their hearts.
azurelunatic: Azz and best friend grabbing each other's noses.  (Default)
http://www.chron.com/disp/story.mpl/ap/nation/4516621.html -- alas.
Baaa-aad sheep jokes this way. (Seasonal.)
Wait, so if pulling a should-have-been-harmless prank, and people panic, that's a crime now? Discussion. Terror has won. Let's stop panicking and start laughing our asses off. And good gods, spring the artist.
Courage vow.

I'm not sure how old I was when I first started to make peace with the idea that someday, somehow, somewhen, inevitably, I'd die. I think I was sixteen, because I remember I was writing it in the fabric-covered journal I'd made myself, the one with the glamour shot of me in dad's button-down shirt. Somehow, the fact ceased to terrify me. It was inevitable, so I resolved to make the most of what I had, and try to clear up any regrets I had so if I died the next day, I'd be dying with a clean conscience.

It's not that if I think it's time to die, I'll lie down and die with no fuss. No. I want to live, because I'm not done living yet, and if I think I'm about to die, I'm going to fight tooth and nail. I figure the only way I'll know that it's my time to die is when I'm actually dead and there's nothing I can do about it. But if some idiot plows through a red light when I'm crossing a street, there won't be too many things I've left hanging. If there's still enough of me left around to be pissed off, yeah, I'll be pissed off, especially if it's something senseless. But the fear doesn't consume me at night anymore.


In other law news, your employer may not be liable for damages if they fail to stop you from being an asshat online. Though they might just fire you on general principle, because it's probably against their computer user TOS.


http://www.jkrowling.com/textonly/en/news_view.cfm?id=97 They're Hallows! They're Deathly! They're coming to bookstores near many of us in July!
azurelunatic: Animated woman's gloved hand dripping with her own blood.  (bleeding)
The serious news villain of my childhood, Saddam Hussein, is dead.

It couldn't have happened to a nicer insane genocidal dictator -- but -- the trial was a mockery and a human rights disaster. Killing the man in a kangaroo court is not the action of a civilized and just nation.

I was raised largely Quaker. I have serious doubts about putting properly convicted and fairly tried criminals to death. Some parts of me think it's just and proper for those who have done things that are that bad, but other, more civilized, parts, say that two deaths are worse than one and it doesn't bring back anyone, and goodness only knows if it deters people. Example or martyr? At least the criminals in question don't go on to do worse things in this lifetime. Nor do the falsely convicted innocent. Nor can anyone who's dead make any further action towards healing.

I know I hear my mother's voice in there. I hear the voices of the Friends Meeting.

There are ten thousand people who have argued both sides on the issue of death for seriously vile criminals. I argue with myself about it a lot when it comes up. I don't expect to reach any kind of conclusion with myself for a long time. I think it's good that I argue it when it comes up. It keeps me from getting too settled on the issue. I'm meant to be uncomfortable about it. I like being uncomfortable about it. If I should stop being uncomfortable about the prospect of state-sanctioned execution, I wouldn't like the person I'd become.
azurelunatic: Green thing crying with spotted towel.  (greensad)
John M. Ford is dead.

I would have liked the chance to meet him. I got to know his writing through Star Trek. After How Much for Just the Planet? I was charmed. The tale of life in the Klingon Empire impressed me mightily. After Growing Up Weightless, he made it onto my (very exclusive) Buy On Sight author list.

...I'm going to go back to bed now.
azurelunatic: Animated woman's gloved hand dripping with her own blood.  (bleeding)
I'm safe. My loved ones are safe. But some poor woman and her loved ones are not.

I was on the phone with Figment when I heard the sort of bad noise that makes you rush to see what happened outside. I peered outside and over the balcony, and I saw a situation outside that made me step outside to get a closer look. When I did get that look, I told Figment, "I have to call 911." So I did.

Probably triggery. )

It's 1:58am now, more than an hour later, and there is one lone policeman standing vigil.

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azurelunatic: Azz and best friend grabbing each other's noses.  (Default)
Azure Jane Lunatic (Azz - bolt of blue - infovore)

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