Friday, August 24, 2007

Death at a Funeral

Yes, I really am on a mini-break. Two movies in one day. Tonight my friend Annelies called and invited me to go with her to see Death at a Funeral @ the Bridge Theater. I love British films and this one was not a disappointment. It was full of "what was he/she in?" actors, which I love.

The film stars Matthew Macfayden (Mr. Darcy of the latest Pride and Prejudice incarnation) as Daniel and Rupert Graves (V for Vendetta and Damage - one of my all time faves)as Robert. They are two brothers whose father has passed and they are faced with the task of bringing together family, friends and random people to give their father a dignified send-off at their family's home. Wackiness ensues. What I loved about it, however, was that it was not easy, predictable wackiness. It was over-the-top without losing the dignity of the characters, but there was a P.G. Wodehouse feel to it.

Andy Nyman played Norman, a very George Costanza character. He had a small discoloration on his wrist, with which he was completely obsessed and he kept getting saddled with the care and grooming of old Uncle Alby, played to curmudgeonly perfection by Peter Vaughan. It must be very cathartic to play such a nasty bastard. Also loved Kris Marshall (of Love Actually fame) playing the slacker nephew of the deceased who was studying to be a "pharmacist." Peter Dinklage (The Station Agent) also gives a great performance as a mysterious stranger who shows up with some unwelcome information and attempts to blackmail the family.

The film was absolutely stolen, lock, stock and barrel by Alan Tudyk as the trepidatious fiance of the niece of the deceased. Because of his nerves at encountering his future father-in-law, he takes what he believes to be a Valium, but it turns out to be acid.

It's a really fun film. Check out the trailer here:


Today, as I thoroughly enjoyed day 2 of my days off from work, I went to an early showing of Bourne Ultimatum. Brilliant. Loved it. Although, I do want to make some introductions: Paul Greengrass, this is a camera dolly. Camera Dolly, Paul Greengrass. I hope you two will become great friends. Knowing that Doug Liman was an exec producer makes the jerky, hand-held camera thing make sense. That's a big part of his film-making aesthetic - he directed Swingers, Mr. & Mrs. Smith and The Bourne Identity. But I digress.

I was a bit early to the theater and I was the first person in that showing. To my great delight, they chose to forgo the irritating music/advertisement slideshow that usually precedes movie showings, so I had a bit of time for silence. I decided to spend the time resting and as I rested I began to pray. After reciting some familiar prayers, I began some time of intercession. I have always appreciated the definition of intercession as "holding someone up into the light of God's love" rather than reciting a list of things I think that person needs. So, I went through a list of a lot of people - friends, family, enemies, co-workers, church members, college friends, etc. It was odd b/c people whom I haven't seen or even thought of popped into my head. Praying for the enemies was the best part. When they popped into my head, I didn't shrink away from the (mental) sight of them, but held them up with everyone else. I still don't know that I want to encounter any of them in the flesh, but it was a good step toward healing for me.

Thursday, August 23, 2007

Two blissful days

I gotta say, this two days off for the office move thing is making me deliriously happy. This morning, I slept in a bit, had some coffee and a lovely breakfast and then went and ran some errands. This afternoon, I'm doing some house cleaning and then I'm going to have a couple of friends over for dinner. Tomorrow it's a few more errands, getting the toes done, and then I'm going to see the Bourne Ultimatum (because SOMEONE saw it without me even though we had a pact. I don't like to name names, but her initials are ANNI MINGIN). After the movie, I'm going to wander around the DeYoung Museum. In the midst of all this I'll be working on some church stuff, preparing for a worship leaders' retreat in a few weeks and a sermon on Ephesians 2 that's on the horizon (added that in b/c I know Bruce reads this - Hi Bruce).

This morning when I was running the errands, I stopped in to the new DSW Shoe store at the Westlake Village in Daly City. It's very nice - I recommend. I cannot stress this enough: I love shoes. Seriously. Shoes. I love everything about them. I love shoe shopping. If I had unlimited resources, I would have unlimited shoes. I love the smell of a shoe store. I love finding a good deal on shoes. I love everything about them. I wish I had this kind of passion for more important things, and I do in some cases. But I know that I really am this shallow. I love shoes.

Wednesday, August 15, 2007

My Type

For the MBCC Steering Committee we have to do take personality tests, because apparently, according to Bruce's personality test, he likes personality tests. Let's see if this works.

INTJ - "Mastermind". Introverted intellectual with a preference for finding certainty. A builder of systems and the applier of theoretical models. 2.1% of total population.
Main type

Enneagram Test Results
Type 1 Perfectionism 76%
Type 2 Helpfulness 60%
Type 3 Image Awareness 43%
Type 4 Sensitivity 16%
Type 5 Detachment 80%
Type 6 Anxiety 30%
Type 7 Adventurousness 16%
Type 8 Aggressiveness 50%
Type 9 Calmness 70%
Your main type is 5
Your variant is social
Take'>">Take Free Enneagram Personality Test
personality/'>">personality tests by

Saturday, August 11, 2007

Urban Situation

Ever have one of those nights where there's a neighbor who is clearly having a very loud birthday party, but you need to go to sleep, and on one hand you're hoping someone calls the police to have it shut down but on the other hand you don't want to be that person b/c the music is really good?

Big, Blonde and Beautiful

Just got back from seeing Hairspray and I have to say I love it when the fat girls win. It was a good time. Anyone else thing that Edna Turnblad was channeling Dr. Evil? I wish every day were Negro Day! (that's a quote from the movie - don't yell at me)

Friday, August 10, 2007

So, that's the hill you want to die on?

I'm kind of an, ummm...outspoken person. I tend to have strong opinions and am not terribly shy about expressing them. I'd like to think that as I'm getting older, I'm mellowing, and to some extent that's true. I know that because I can look at the following links without getting too pissed off. Actually, I think they're amusing.

The thing that bugs me about these sites and organizations is that I have this thing about the Kingdom of God. I see it as important. My Mennonite background emphasizes the Sermon on the Mount as the "canon within the canon." It's a perfect encapsulation of what Jesus was bringing about and calling on us to continue. Seems pretty simple - continue the kingdom. When I look at the things that these folks see as of primary importance, I don't see the kingdom in it. In fact, I had an e-mail exchange with the leaders of Christian Exodus, stating this very opinion. As soon as I asked them to justify what they were doing according to Jesus' definition of the Kingdom in Matthew, they stopped responding to me.

Recently, as I've come across these sites, I have seen them as not something that needs to be railed against, but as cautionary tales - to show how easily it is to be distracted from what we were called to do.

Unfortunately, this is real - but pretty funny. I went to seminary with a particularly obnoxious KJV-only person who had stickers all over his car and had KJV1611 as part of his e-mail address. He also believed that Baptists were the only true Christians. He did a project in a class on the Reformation that I was in and he referred to anyone who opposed the Catholic church as "Baptistic," which for him meant "biblically accurate."

This is appalling. Home-ec in seminary. Seriously. Actually, while it is awful, it isn't that shocking, given that Paige Patterson's wife has written that any woman who believes that she has leadership gifts has been deceived by the evil one. Charming.

Stuff like this helps me to find humor in these types of organizations. Logic is easier on the vocal chords than shouting and way more amusing.

This shouldn't be real - except the depiction of Jesus with bright blue eyes and flowing blond hair. That's the only part that's plausible.

Tuesday, August 07, 2007

Mom was here

My mom came to town over the weekend for the SF Choral Society performance and we had a really great time. The woman has a lot of energy and we did as much as possible during her 48 hour visit. I made her play keyboard in church on Sunday. We shopped. We decorated. I'm still recovering.

During the intermission of Saturday night's performance, I was scanning the room for where my mom was seated and she was directly ahead of me. I had only met the woman sitting next to me a couple of days before when we were seated next to each other for this event, and she and I had chatted briefly and she's a really sweet person. I told her that I had spotted my mom in the crowd and that she had travelled here that day to see the performance. She remarked back, "That's sweet. My mom is dead, but this is her skirt I'm wearing. I think she would be proud." At first, I was a little taken aback because of the matter-of-fact way that she stated it and because I had only just met her and it was a pretty personal statement.

Over the last couple of days, I've not been able to get her statement out of my mind. My mom is dead. I think she would be proud. I'm so grateful that I still have my mom. I know that parents get older and people die, and I know that someday I will belong to that club of Women Whose Mothers Are Dead, and I dread that day. I can't imagine not being able to call her up and tell her about something great that happened, or something I think is funny, or go shopping with her, or cook with her at holidays. I have friends who live with this and I just can't fathom the pain and emptiness of that. I'm so grateful for my mom and I'm so sorry for those who don't have that, for whatever reason. I love you, Mom.

Sunday, August 05, 2007

Umm.....thank you?

This was the weekend of the Brahms performance and it went pretty well. I had a number of friends come check out the performance and my mom flew out to see it, which was great. She's hanging curtains in my bedroom. That's what she does. She shows up and decorates so I don't have to. It's a good arrangement.

Last night following the last performance I was pretty exhausted and my back was kind of sore from the evil Gut Buster class at the gym and then all the standing, so I was a little fatigued. I was walking along Franklin toward Grove and I casually dropped the wrapper from the granola bar I'd had for dinner and I heard and jingling sound not typically made by granola bar wrappers. Yes, friends - it was my keys. In the garbage can. On the street. I was horrified. I could sort of see them in there, but it was one of those that has the basket for recyclables at the top and you can't really reach in. The can was also not very full and so they fell way down there. I didn't quite know what to do, so I thought I'd look for my mom and my friends and then see after that.

While I was looking I came across a large, older security guy whom we shall call Giant Bostonian (GB). I asked GB what I should do in this situation and I was making it clear that I wasn't necessarily asking him to fix the problem, but how should I go about fixing the problem. He asked to take a look and so he lumbered along behind me to the can in question. GB tried to reach in and get them, snag them with his Swiss Army knife, all to no avail. Then he decided to use the knife to pick the lock on the side door. He was not successful. Finally he decided that brute force was his only option. Given his carriage and demeanor this is not the first time he has come to that conclusion. He started to tackle the can and push it into the street. The street.

As GB lunged toward the can, I said, "Umm...maybe not in the street." And he stood up and turned to me and started yelling, "Do you want me to help you or not? You ask for help and then you bitch about how I'm helping. You sound like a woman. Do you want my help or not?" Awesome. I drew myself up to my full height (stop laughing) and said, "I want you to help me in the least dangerous way possible, and it seems like pushing a concrete garbage container into oncoming traffic isn't the way to do that." He continued on and when the can was downed, he reached in and fished out my keys. He then discovered that the receptacle was too heavy for him to lift back up, so he left it lying there.

So, if you're in San Francisco, going north on Franklin and as you come up to Grove, you see a trash can on its side in the middle of the road - all me.

Wednesday, August 01, 2007

Good News from the Khaki Khonglomerate

I was excited to learn last week that we get to keep our gym! Our new tenant, Massive Viral Video (MVV) has said that they know it's an important perk for us and they want us to keep it. I take back everything I said about them! This means I get to keep my FABULOUS yoga class, work out over lunch, and not have to look for another place to work out and pay more money. All is right in my little narcissistic universe!