Friday, June 28, 2013

Happy End of DOMA Friday!

I don't write much about politics on here, mostly because it's one of those "Rules" of polite communication.
But forget that.
DOMA is over.  Gone.  Dead.  Thank Gaga things are moving forward for real.
Over the past few months, as we've seen 12 states pass laws allowing gay marriage or ruling that a ban on gay marriage is unconstitutional, I have felt that we are taking big steps forward, and this one is another tangible step.   Not the final one, but an important one.
It feels like a big breath of good air again.  Much like when Obama got re-elected after a worrisome few months.  Or whatever it is that causes you to take in big gulps of relief-filled air.
I feel excited about whatever comes next.  Hopefully it is something a little more progressive than this, but even so, there seem to be at least another 9 states moving in the right direction soon.

So I post this image of San Francisco in a state of awe and pride:

And I say

images from here and here.

Friday, June 21, 2013

Happy First Day of Summer Friday!

Today is the first day of summer.  According to the calendar that is.  Those of us who live in Oregon know that our summer doesn't really start for another 2-3 weeks.  But nevertheless, happy summer to you my Friday Friends!

Since moving to SE Portland in October, I have been in the process of turning my new house and backyard into a home-y-er version of what they were.

When I moved in, the walls of the house were a sad baby blue color with beige beige beige everywhere else.  This could not stand of course.  I have since painted everything in green, orange, and gunmetal gray.

Now, the real disaster was the backyard.  The house I bought had been vacant for about 4 months before I moved in and the people who left it seemed to have just left drip lines running after they moved out.  The yard had turned into a crazy Oregon-y jungle.

In my ideal world, my backyard would look something lovely like this:
image by Pascal Campion from here

In reality, I was faced with something more like this:
image from here

So, slowly but surely, I am working my way towards creating that little hammocked paradise.

Friday, June 14, 2013

Happy Flag Friday

Today's Friday post is meant to teach you some important stuff.
Flag stuff.

June 14th is Flag Day, which is one of those holidays I knew nothing about until I had a chat with my dear friend wikipedia.

Way back in 1777 the US adopted our flag by a congressional resolution.

I'd be lying if I told you that I have long felt some kind of profound connection to American flag. But recently I had the chance to visit the Smithsonian to see this on display there:

It's the flag.  As in The Flag.  The one our National Anthem is about.  The museum spent a lot of time restoring the cloth (people were suspended over it to clean the fabric by hand, a process that took 6 years) and detailing the process that Mary Young Pickersgill went through to sew and construct the flag that ended up being larger than her own house.

So when I say that I didn't feel a profound connection to the flag, it was the story of restoring the flag that hit me a bit that day we went to see it.  It was hearing about the people who were committed to saving and restoring something that they treasure so deeply that really struck me as profound.

For me, that kind of devotion is what sticks and turns something so old and fragile into something immortal and timelessly relevant.

image from here.

Friday, June 7, 2013

Happy Settlers of Catan Friday

Earlier this week, my friends Sam, Chris, and I decided to spend the evening on Chris' glorious apartment building roof playing games and generally enjoying the sun still being up in the evening.

We carried our beers, cheddar and sour cream chips, and sunglasses up to the roof and settled in to a nice, always epic, friendship-ruining game of

I won't give you a play-by-play of the game.  Just know that Chris destroyed us (as he usually does).  Sam and Chris fought over the Largest Army card after essentially eliminating our brick supply for large portions of the game.  Chris and I fought over the Longest Road card, which I lost when he blocked me off at one end after Sam built 4 roads in one turn and looked like he would be more of a threat than he would be.

The best part of the game for me though was what happened after I posted a few pictures of us playing.  Based on the comments, it appears that Settlers is the glue that holds our world (or at least our generation) together.  I suspect it may be an important item for all people to keep handy in the face of the apocalypse, and may even be the key to world peace.

Happy Friday!

image from here.