Thursday, July 31, 2008

Curious Movie

As an involved parent, I preview movies and shows before the kids see them, though I don't do it nearly as often as I should. My most recent preview was Curious George and I approved the movie for viewing by my little ones even while dismayed at what a G rated movie says about modern society.

I vividly remember the reel-to-reel Curious George films from my grade school library days. I didn't spontaneously pray much as a little kid, but I came close during the walk to the library, hoping that we would watch a Curious George "book" in library class. Since I don't own a projector, my girls have received and inherited many Curious George books and they request frequent readings. The movie did an excellent job of capturing the art of H. A. and Margaret Rey while updating it with current technology and excellent voice talent. However, the movie missed the relationship between the Man in the Yellow Hat and George and came off as a buddy film instead of retaining the father-son relationship which the books portrayed. So I sadly approved the film which was acceptable but reflects the failings of modern society, adults who want to be buddies instead of parents.

Sunday, July 27, 2008

NFP on Holiday

I have been fond of Green Day for a long time, despite the fact that my opinions on every subject under the sun have shifted radically since I was introduced to the band in high school. I was recently listening to Holiday and I realized that I truly agree with the lyric, "I beg to dream and differ from the hollow lies..." but probably not in the way that Billie Joe intended.

Despite my radical changes in opinion, I have almost constantly defined myself as a rebel, in true American style. My first chosen philosophical opinion was to be a true rebel. While the majority of my grade school classmates were disrespectful, 90210-watching, football-playing, cool-kid idolators (pseudo-rebels). I decided to be a respectful, cartoon-watching, video-gaming, cool-kid agnostic (true rebel). This led to some good spiritual development such as actually singing at school Masses when no one else did, but it also made me an outcast in general.

Being an outcast had its own benefits such as being able to choose my own path in life without the burden of appearances. I have chosen the counter-cultural path of an orthodox Catholic: trying to follow the Natural Law, getting married without co-habiting, having kids before establishing my career, running a single income family, and teaching natural family planning. Considering Billie Joe's comments about hoping to win a Grammy for American Idiot (and the praise that goes with it), perhaps I have stayed truer to his message of rebellion than he has. In the End, I don't think I'm a Walking Contradiction, just a Basket Case.

Thursday, July 24, 2008

Hidden Adventures

This article best explains the restlessness which I feel every day, the restlessness which drives me to start a business and perform my own home repairs. The song/speech Sunscreen sums it up well, "Do one thing every day that scares you."

Monday, July 21, 2008

There is a Brain in that Skull

Now that I am the proud father of little ones, I only get to the movies once or twice a year. As a Father's day treat from my father, this year's movie was Indiana Jones and the Kingdom of the Crystal Skull. Since my father is the one who gave me his love of movies, especially epic adventures like Indiana Jones and Star Wars, I was thrilled to see this installment with him and happy that it lived up to its predecessors.

The movie definitely beat Temple of Doom, keeping it out of the bottom spot in the Indiana Jones collection. Interestingly, the adventure took place in South America, an area of archaeological history which is often overlooked. Conveniently, child sacrifices were glossed over but I can agree to that conceit since contemplating the murder of children is too deep for an action/adventure film. The moral of the story was not as powerfully depicted as in The Last Crusade, but it was pertinent to modern life. Finally, Harrison Ford did pull off the action star role despite his age while the car chases and fight sequences were all of Raiders quality. Crystal Skull also made the required slights against Indy's age, as well as references to the previous movies. I don't think this movie will win over anyone who wasn't an Indy fan, but as a guy who owns a fedora, I'm thrilled the series ended well.

Tuesday, July 15, 2008

Not Groucho or Cheeko but...


I admit that I'm not sure what to think of Oprah. She is an excellent interviewer and TV producer and all of her failings seem to be the common ones. She is "Christian" but mostly supports New Age belief so her definition of Christian is off. She is a feminist, helping African girls as a way to improve the continent instead of exposing the vast governmental incompetence and/or corruption. She acts as if racism is still the rampant social malady it was in 1968 despite the fact that we've had a black woman as Secretary of State for years. I suppose the best thing that I can say for her is that she is a normal human with the misfortune of international fame so that crackpots like me can form an opinion about her.

However, her network has given my company its TV debut. (Click on the More... link under the Oh! Oxygen banner on the left of the page)

Sunday, July 13, 2008

Father as Teacher

As I spent more time contemplating my direct selling dream of working from home, I realized that it meshed with my goal of being a great father.

I believe that a father should be a teacher, passing on many things: the Faith, family traditions, the history of video games, what-life-was-like-when-I-was-a-kid, and such. The task of teaching requires the dad's presence, for teaching by example is the best way. As I stated in my previous post on fatherhood, since I wanted my children to be helpful around the house; I took on chores such as the dishes and the laundry.

As I contemplated how we have arrived at this state in our society, I realized that working outside of the farm/home was a result of the industrial revolution. It seems, to me, that prominent paternal presence for the children was a casualty of the rise of the factory, along with handcrafted goods and quality food.

Makes me wish I knew how to run a farm.

Thursday, July 10, 2008

Can Only God Make a Man?

As I pursue my financial freedom, I start to learn about the variety of laws which affect personal finance. I seem to grasp that corporations are taxed on money left over after investing, while individuals are taxed on everything. This gives corporations a huge advantage, since they have up to 35% more money to invest by their very nature. As I pay more attention to the way in which the terms are used, I realize that corporations are effectively legal people. This really bothers me, on a philosophical level. Though it doesn't seem actually immoral, I am disturbed by the concept of the State creating legal people. Maybe that mindset is what disturbed Alduous Huxley. If the State can already create legal people, why not create actual people. Creepy.

Wednesday, July 9, 2008

Worthwhile News

A Baby's Breath will be featured in an upcoming edition of The Bulletin, a local Philly paper. I generally distrust newspapers, but this one seem worth a trial.

Monday, July 7, 2008

Eggs on Film

No doubt many of you were eagerly waiting the moment when ovulation would be caught on film, wait no longer.

I am stunned by the resolution of this picture, considering that the ovum is one cell. I had no idea that there were any cameras capable of capturing such an image. I hope such technology can be applied toward noble ends.

Sunday, July 6, 2008

Man of the House

I had some ruminations pertaining to the actual intent of this blog over my relaxing birthday vacation.

I have read in multiple places recently that the primary assistance which fathers provide in the home is not help with what was previously termed, "woman's work" but is something else. I don't know to whom these authors are responding but I will write a response anyway. Since the laundry, dishes, and other "woman's work" are not objectively assigned by the Lord; I assert that they are up for grabs around the house. It seems natural that they mostly fall upon whoever is home the most. In the majority of households, this is the mother as biology dictates that she has difficulty working outside of the home during pregnancy and early breastfeeding. However, if the father is to pass on the virtue of selfless service to his children, he should help out when necessary, during pregnancy for example but also in times of general familial chaos.

I get the feeling I said this before. Thanks for humoring me, dear reader.

Tuesday, July 1, 2008

God Bless America!

I am looking forward to a nice holiday to celebrate our nation's birth. It is a blessing beyond compare that an average joe like me can participate in running my country and exercise a variety of basic freedoms, including religion, speech, assembly, ownership, and self-defense. I often contemplate the sad state of affairs in our world and I often read about the abuse of power in our own country; however, this Fourth of July, I shall remember the honor of men who founded this Great Experiment. I don't believe they thought democracy would led us to perfection; I believe they thought democracy would engender responsibility and maturity. As a nation, we may have let them down but I hope that my life may be one that they smile upon.