Wednesday, 17 June 2009

Johnny Depp, Swine Flu and Fossilised Hyena Poo

Jeopardy Answer for 20 - "Things that are currently to be found in North Norfolk"??!?
At The dig on happisburgh Beach they are looking at a layer of gravel that was once a forest floor over 400,000 years ago. In it they have found hippo and mamoth bones and hyena coprolite. How do they know it is fossilised Hyena poo I hear you cry - well the guy is an expert in Hyena coprolite from the Natural History Museum and apparently it is a) text book in shape and size and b) there was nothing else doing poos like that in that location in that period.
Johnny Depp is rumoured to be buying a farm in or near Mundesley - but the facts have yet to be substantiated - I just can't imagine Johnny and the inhabitants of Mundesley coexisiting somehow - It is not the most cultural and bohemian place in North Norfolk and celebrities are few and far between - but maybe just maybe he has heard about John Major living in the area.
Sadly a little girl at my son's school has contacted Swine Flu as in the N1H1 strain. She has just got back from a holiday in Florida - had a jam packed birthday party and then fell ill her first morning back at school. I pray that her and her family will be well and that the spread of the epidemic here will be contained. My little boy's school is closed for a week in hope of controling the spread.
Having been chastised when sneezing in the supermarket, a few weeks ago from allergies by a hypersensitive shopper, for not using a tissue. Now when I sneeze in the supermarket aisle from hayfever, I will have to be extra careful to have a tissue with me - as the wider public will be jumpy and trigger happy to say the least. I may not be a carrier of the plague but I get a feeling I may be lynched inbetween the bulgar wheat and the porcini mushrooms if not circumspect.

Sunday, 14 June 2009

Jesus Vs a Velociraptor

On Cecilia's Blog she has posted about her children's discussion on "epic face-offs" - which I will copy you into because it is great:
"I waltzed in the kitchen door late Thursday and announced to my children: I'm going to cook dinner. Alert the media!
And I did, and when we were at table, after having said grace, my children said unto me:
Petra: So at church some of the kids and I were talking about, you know, epic face-offs.
Larry: Pirates vs. Ninjas?
Petra: Yeah, stuff like that... Batman vs. Spider Man, Spider Man vs. a velociraptor...
Cecilia: A velociraptor??
Petra: Yeah, and then someone said, What about Jesus vs. a velociraptor?
Larry: Oh! Score!
Petra: And all around the table, everybody was saying, Oh Jesus, of course, Jesus.
Cecilia: Mmm hmmm...
Petra: And I said, the velociraptor!
Larry: OH! PK strikes back!
Cecilia: (laughing)
Petra: I mean, think about it. Jesus didn't resist when people tried to kill him... so he'd just let the velociraptor kill him, and then come back from the dead. But they were all saying, Well he would perform a miracle. And I said, What kind of miracle? He never zapped anyone with his power, right?
Larry: Yeah... unless he, you know, multiplied the velociraptors... so that there were like, 5000 of them. In which case...
Cecilia: (helpless laughing) "

It reminds me that I was just talking tonight about Jesus Vs Paul.
I was at a party last night and most people now know about me and my girlfriend - so the icy reception from some rather judgemental Evangelicals should have been expected. One had a heated argument with me about expelling the immoral brother before she knew I was not straight. So no surprises she would not meet return my smile or credit me with a presence.
And now I get to the point - Why is it the judgemental side of the evangelical church put so much weight on Paul's teachings and rules - no women in leadership - expelling those who are sexually immoral etc. etc. - when they miss Jesus' example of realising that we are called to love one another as he has loved us - not turn our backs on those we diasgree with - excommunicate those who do not conform.
Pauls is amazing - wisdom beyond nearly all - but he lived in a culture and an historical period - was OCD - or at best OTT. Why do so many Christian's use his letter's to specific churches at a specific time to beat others up with?
So in the battle Paul V's Jesus - I hope and pray - as would Paul - that Jesus wins... But in the evangelical church Pauls seems to win out more often than not - or at least his most opressive rules.

Please win Jesus in the church as you would against a velociraptor - because it would know it's Lord and maker and would lie down as the lion will with the lamb.

P.S. When looking up images to add to the post I found some pertinent and some very crazy stuff about Jesus and Velociraptor's - I could never have imagined in a million years let alone a Jurassic period...

Saturday, 13 June 2009

Transgendered Vs Cisgendered

I think it is important for people to have a space to admit they struggle with things they feel they should be fine with. It is only when we deal openly and honestly with prejudice when there is a safe place to admit our limitations that we can grow towards more understanding and acceptance. So when on DTWOF a gay person admits they are uncomfortable with a lesbian wanting to transition - although that might not be the most supportive or politically progressive attitude - it needs to not be jumped on. The world can be so politically correct - it is easy to present a veneer of progressiveness - it is what is expected in liberal intelligent circles - but it is only when we are honest about where we are and allowed to make mistakes that we can trully develop. I am sorry that being different is so hard in this world - the human race are ultimately a herd animal - but I don’t apologise for giving people the freedom to admit they struggle with difference. I live in a remote part of the UK where until recently there were very very few people that were not WASP - so when a musician from Zimbabwe visited to do a dance workshop - the children needed to feel free to ask questions about her hair and skin - although as their teacher I was cringing inside - she was fine about it and they realised it was ok to ask questions - that is the only way to break down ignorance and the prejudice that accompanies it. I was always told not to look or ask when I saw a disabled person as a child and felt that there must be something deeply wrong and embarrassing about disability - It wasn’t until I dragged myself a long to volunteer at a holiday camp for young people with disabilites when I was 15 that I realised the strengths, gifts and wonderful contribution people of diability make in the world. It wasn’t something to worry about or feel embarrassed about - it was normal and natural - if sometimes both a gift and a curse in an able bodied world.
So I say where better to say ” why hasn’t that man got any clothes on?” as in The Emperor’s new clothes - to look stupid but be honest - than in the wonderful, challenging blog that is.

Thursday, 11 June 2009

Hailing in Happisburgh

Today I was on the beach in the middle of a thunder storm with lightning firing over the sea. It changed in seconds from the odd spot of rain to be weathered in an anorak, to howling winds and biting hail. I suddenly felt very exposed as the lightning rove the sky in two and I felt much taller on the flat beach than I would have liked. But it was awesome -what a place to experience the power of a storm - I got wet through to my undergarments despite a craghopper waterproof and had pools of water in my shoes. I did not flee the beach alone after ten minutes of braving the wind and hail finding my largest belemnite yet -serendipity indeed. The archeaologists on their dig also admitted defeat and carted their wheel barrow of finds up the many flights of metal stairs. They are from a medley of museums form the Natural History to the British and searching for evidence of early man on these shores. The handaxe found on a previous excavation showed that some of the first humans on British shores lived and hunted along the Norfolk coast. They know that where Happisburgh is was the mouth of an important river and the hunter gatherers would have opportunied on the watering animals and tidal foods. It was a pleasure to talk at length to an archaeologist from the Natural History museum. He was interested in my belemnite hunting and encouraged me in my pursuit. I also found a fossilised sea urchin that looked like a beautiful flower imprint on a pebble upside down. From that angle it is easy to see they are related to starfish.

Tuesday, 9 June 2009

A Fascinating Foray into Photos of Friendship

I was thinking about friendship and its value. How one of my friends emigrated to the other side of the world for love but the loss of friendships have left a huge hole in her life. That you can spend your life looking for a romantic significant other and fail to notice that close friends can be, and often are, the significant others that partners are a pale imitation of. How when a friend becomes a lover you risk losing that friendship. That friendship - especially accompanied by cups of tea - can make the world seem a much better place. Despite many deep and meaningful thought processes -I found that lyrical poetry and witty anecdotes fail me and so I express myself through the oddities of a google image search. How friendship is expressed in different forms from Amish friendship bread to Rwandan Friendship baskets, from paintings by Picasso to American friendship quilts, from schmaltzy kitten posters to dayglo slogans, from ancient skooners to Norwich swing bridges, from Charlie Chapman to the hairy arm brigade - not to mention the full frontal nude melange of the friendship village - not displayed here for reasons of followers sensitivities. Friendship is a universal and incredible thing not to be taken or let go of lightly - but boy does it make some people a little loony in the Hallmark department. Hope you enjoy mes amies.