Monday, May 30, 2005

Asking Elena the 10 Questions

Pink Kitty had her turn. Now it's mine.

1. What is your favorite word?
Similar to Pink Kitty's: Faboo!

2. What is your least favorite word?

3. What turns you on creatively, spiritually or emotionally?
I respond creatively to poetry, beautiful vistas, and terrific music. Spiritually---to God's truth, to hymn lyrics, to what God does in my life. Emotionally---good bear hugs, happy or sad tears, sappy commercials and movies (I'm such a girl!), a good love story, words of affirmation.

4. What turns you off?
Arrogance; refusal to open up; selfishness; surfaceyness (yes, I just made up that word)

5. What is your favorite curse word?
Real ones or fake ones? I'll share the fake ones: Lordamercy! Oh, my word! Crudmuffins! Bad words, bad words!!!

6. What sound or noise do you love?
Brook or river water flowing, rain on rooftops, a baby's laughter, 100-piece orchestra playing gorgeous symphonic music

7. What sound or noise do you hate?
Incessant, sharp screaming or squealing from a child in the store; fingernails on a chalkboard

8. What profession other than your own would you like to attempt?
Stage actress

9. What profession would you not like to do?
Trash collector

10. What would you like to hear God say when you arrive at the pearly gates?
"I've longed for this day, My daughter. Welcome home! You have done well." And then we'd hug. Then I'd hug my family and friends. And then we'd eat. And drink. And laugh and talk and sing. And praise God... :o)

Saturday, May 28, 2005

Utter silliness...

My mother sent me this forwarded e-mail. Maybe it's the bad influence of the CD I'm listening to (Nickelback)...maybe it's the cute shoes. Anyway...I giggled. Enjoy!

Now that Uday & Qusay have been eliminated, a lot of the lesser-known Hussein family members are coming to the attention of American authorities.

Among the brothers:

Sooflay ..............the restaurateur
Guday.................the half-Australian brother
Huray.................the sports fanatic
Sashay................the gay brother
Kuntay & Kintay.......the twins from the African mother
Sayhay................the baseball player
Ojay..................the stalker/murderer
Gulay.................the singer/entertainer
Ebay..................the Internet czar
Biliray...............the country music star
Ecksray...............the radiologist
Puray.................the blender factory owner
Regay.................the half-Jamaican brother
Tupay.................the one with bad hair

Among the sisters:

Lattay.................the coffee shop owner
Phayray................the zoo worker in the gorilla house
Sapheway...............the grocery store owner
Sashay.................the country line dancer
Cashay.................the owner of a check cashing store

And finally:
There is Oyvay.........but the family doesn't like to talk about him much

Thursday, May 26, 2005

Confidence is key

As discussed in today's "Adult Swim" segment of 107.5 FM The River's morning show, what transforms a man or woman with more ordinary physical features is confidence.

Speaking about initial attraction and our "animal side," the guest expert said that men look for women who look healthy: clear skin; clear, bright eyes; proportioned figure---a sign that she takes care of herself and isn't lazy. He said that women notice first in a man: broad shoulders, strong chest, flat stomach, and round tooshie. (Have you ever seen a man with a nice body walk into a room hunched over and cowering? I can't think of one!) He looks strong and healthy and shows that he can take care of himself. Taking care of oneself usually is a good indicator that a person can take care of others. (But beware the person who is overly interested in his or her own grooming and work and leisure activities and doesn't care about others!)

Yeah, if you're blessed with a faboo bod or if you've worked on your health so that you have a faboo version of whatever you've been given, and you still don't exude confidence, you won't be as attractive.

We must face reality, my friends: You cannot let yourself go and expect people of the opposite sex to find you attractive. When you work hard to accomplish goals and when you accept your basic personality (at the same time are willing to work on your weaknesses) and try to smile and be agreeable in public, then you are much more likely to be a person others want to be around.

Laziness, sloppiness, negativity, a critical spirit, and lack of confidence turn you into a miserable person. And though misery loves company, the company do NOT love misery. Misery is going to get you exactly what you don't want---total alone time. And even the most introverted person needs SOME relationships (whether work or project colleagues, acquaintances, close or best friends, Bible study group members, relatives, spouses, children, etc.).

I know that I have much to work on in my life. I won't enumerate all the stuff here. Just wanted you to know that I'm not perfect. Far from it! But at least I've come to admit I have to face reality about things and stop demanding that the world change in order to fit me.


Tuesday, May 24, 2005

Today's Linkies of Interest

Braymp of De Novo asks, "Do you bling for Jesus?"
How wide is God's mercy? Discuss at Digital Cowboy's place.
Newest blogger StarGazer examines the unholy yoking of companies.

Original Cyberpunk and friends discuss ridiculousnesses.
When you've gone Oompa-Loompa, you've gone too far.

What's in a Name?
What's in a Name? Part Deux

More About Elena
She's currently...
And longing for Narnia
Don't overlook the "Plain Janes"

Monday, May 23, 2005

New Look!

So...whatcha think? Like the new digs?

I thought the font would be easier to read. Black type on white background is always the best for legibility and readability.

Note: Contest results coming soon!!

Monday, May 09, 2005

Best online cartoons around

Strong Bad e-mails:

lures and jigs


comic (or "Debut of Teen Girl Squad")

On a Mission: Equilibrium

OK, I've GOT to find me this movie. Tonight! If Nate's thumb's-up wasn't enough, how about a nice serving of hotties for ya? Angus McFayden (Braveheart's Robert the Bruce; Divine Secrets of the Ya-Ya Sisterhood's Connor), Christian Bale (Little Women's Laurie, Swing Kids, Reign of Fire), and Dominic Purcell (Blade: Trinity's Drake) to be exact. And there may be more...

I hear the action's as good as or better than The Matrix. Hot dang!

Update: The movie was out of stock at the store, so PK and I are gonna do the Netflix thing. Will let you know how it turns out.

The Woman in Black, Avenged

I am in all black today... my neighbor across the hall at work calls me "The Woman in Black" and likes to compliment me when I'm wearing an outfit with color (especially if no black is in evidence). Well, he's out of town, and the other work neighbor said, "I don't care what Yella Jacket says; you look good in black."

Yes, yes, I do. Which is why I'm glad that wearing all black to a wedding is no longer a fashion and social faux pas... At my cousin CardinalFan's wedding, I wore all black, and reviewing the photo, I looked darned good.

You know, I'd rather people wear all black to weddings than wear jeans...unless the wedding party is all in jeans. And that would be an interesting wedding, wouldn't it? Rather casual... I suppose horsies would be involved...or a beach. I would hope. Definitely NOT appropriate for a church wedding!

Until the ghost of Emily Post comes to haunt me, I shall wear black, even all black, whenever I want!

"Omigosh, you're how old?"; or Elena and Age

Last night, for the umpteenth time, someone expressed total shock (and perhaps some awe) that I am 29 and will turn 30 in October. Since some of y'all have never seen me and since I have yet to post photos of myself, you have nothing to which to compare/contrast your idea of my online persona---you can't tell. But I wonder about the opinions of those of you (like Pink Kitty, Ashley the Blue Raider, Duke Diva, StarGazer, and others) who knew me first from the "real world"---do I look THAT young? One person last night said I looked 18. Yikes!

Another commenter, a few weeks back, speculated that it was the Holy Spirit preserving me. Never thought of God as a pickling agent...

Every time someone says this to me, I just respond, "Well, it'll come in handy when I turn 40."

Sunday, May 01, 2005

What's in a name? Part deux


[See earlier post here.] Found the meanings of the real names of some of my friends ( Here ya go! (Form is "first name's meaning'; "middle name's meaning.")

Pink Kitty---"God is gracious, girl!"; "light" (that fits perfectly!)

Duke Diva---"consecrated to God"; "gracious" (wow...)

StarGazer---"ever-powerful"; "created by God" (how's that for impressive!)

Salsa Guy---"famous spearman, quiet" (how interesting!)

De Novo and Digital Cowboy (same first name)---"warlike, hammer, defender" (quite appropriate!)

Pevey---"shining light, high mountain, messenger" (something to live up to!)

Nate---Nathan is "gift of God." (don't let it go to your head!)

WellDigger---"bright, famous" (yay!)

Elena---as I said, it's Spanish and it means "the bright one." I like it!

A plain gal can be a heroine too


Q. D. Leavis, in the "Introduction" to the Penguin Classics 1986 edition of Jane Eyre, explains that one of Charlotte Brontë's intentions with this novel was to show "that a heroine could be interesting without being beautiful" (11).*

Oh, yes, Jane Eyre is interesting, but how close to real life is this kind of romance?

Other heroines have not been strikingly beautiful, plain Janes (pun intended), ugly ducklings, or pretty or handsome (but not described as beautiful) girls---with incredible beauty of character and personality and passion for living: Anne from Austen's Persuasion, Fosca from Stephen Sondheim's musical adaptation of the Italian novel Passion, Molly Gibson from Elizabeth Gaskell's Wives and Daughters, and Melanie Hamilton Wilkes from Margaret Mitchell's Gone with the Wind (although Melly is not the novel's central heroine, she is of more good character than Scarlett!)---just to name a few.

Anne gets her man in the end, after having refused him the first time because she was persuaded to do so by an family friend/mentor/confidante. She is in her late 20s when Naval Captain Frederick Wentworth reappears in her life, and she fears that because the bloom of her youth is fading, his interest in her will not return. But she demonstrates her affability, her kindness, her loyalty, her integrity, and he reveals that his heart has always been and forever will be hers.

Fosca, an ugly invalid, becomes obsessed with a young officer in the Italian army stationed in her town and living in her home. (Her cousin is in the same unit.) Giorgio shares books with Fosca and talks with her about truth and beauty and life. The intellectual stimulation is a treasure to her, and she finds herself bonding quickly with him. Giorgio is in love with Clara, a beauty married to another man. He and Clara exchange letters, which infuriates Fosca, who has become obsessed with Giorgio. Their discussions intensify: he tries to explain real love to her and she refuses to relent. She keeps loving him and claims that it is the reason she has for living now. Eventually, Giorgio gives up Clara, refusing a love that is "convenient" and scheduled in favor of Fosca's brave love that is "implacable as stone...a love that like a knife has cut into a life [he] wanted left alone."

Orphaned Molly Gibson is pretty and good. She takes care of her father, becomes an almost-adopted daughter of the local squire and his wife, learns about insects from the squire's son Roger, and defends the honor of her new stepsister Cynthia. She is passionate and intelligent and not afraid to speak up for those she loves or for herself, but she also has grace and restraint. Roger's infatuation with Cynthia fades and he discovers Molly's true value (it is she who shares his love of learning---and appreciates the wasp's nest he brings to her as a present) and asks her to marry him.

Melanie Wilkes refuses to believe ill of anyone. She defends Scarlett and does not listen to the idle tongues of her sister-in-law India and the other women of Atlanta. She keeps seeing the good in each person. She tries to get through to Rhett, to see that Scarlett really loves him. Melly delights in pleasing her husband---gives him her brightest smiles, her trust, her hopes. This woman is so good, so resilient! She's not perfect---she is willing to cover up her husband's involvement in what was the predecessor of the KKK and willing to drag a Civil War scaber and attempt to kill an intruder with it.

These women prove that their inner qualities shining through transform any outer plainness or ugliness into something much more. What I want to know is where are the stories of real women, real plain Janes who are held to be beautiful, not for their looks (although they may actually be attractive on the outside) but for their virtues?

Obviously, this is a topic to which a blog entry does not do justice. The issue begs an essay or a research paper. (And watch someone else steal the idea...)

Well, this entry just holds the place for the idea... So much of "literary stuff" has been churning in my head of late, I needed a place to dump it all.

* Q. D. Leavis, "Introduction," Jane Eyre, New York and England: Viking Penguin/Penguin Books, 1986, 11.



* The Sound on the Page: Style and Voice in Writing by Ben Yagoda
* Jane Eyre by Charlotte Bronte, Penguin Classics Edition, reprinted 1986

Listening to:
* Breathing Freely by Ruth McGinnis (instrumental---violin, drums, flute, and more)
* whatever's singable on the radio

* coffee, every morning during the week
* Plantation Mint hot tea, by Bigelow

Eating and enjoying:
* Dove Dark chocolate (gotta have a little chocolatey goodness every day!)
* chicken nuggets---satisfies the protein snacky craving
* Aunt V's strawberry 'n' almonds 'n' bleu cheese topped lettuce salad w/ poppy seed dressing (good stuff!)
* leftover and warmed-up yeast roll from Logan's (all that soft, fermented [yeast] goodness!)

Amazed by/Delighting in:
* ultrasound pics of babies (no, not mine!)
* how darling kittens are when they're really young
* how yummy "rare" steak can taste
* how essential water is to the human body
* technology (I LOVE my new insulin pump!!! Thank you, MiniMed!)
* my understanding a literary criticism article on a better[?] level (did my brain flip a switch?)
* the power of the French blue shirt on a guy (try it!)

Dumbfounded by:
* the persistent misuse of its and it's
* refusals to obey school zone speed limits
* butt bows
* Padmé's dialogue in Revenge of the Sith (let's take away Lucas's laptop, shall we?)
* the MSM's lack of understanding how abstinence pledges are supposed to work (anyone see the segment on Silver Ring Thing on "60 Minutes"? they just don't get it!)

Daydreaming about:
* a really good idea for a poem
* getting my apartment fully straightened up and decorated
* grad school (namely, a PhD in English or an MFA in Creative Writing---first come the two GRE tests, though!)

How'sit with you?

What's in a name?


Do you know what your first name means? Middle name?

My real first name's meaning is "womanly." Real middle name's meaning is "bright." Elena is Spanish for my middle name. (I have dark hair, but no, I'm not Hispanic. Sorry to disappoint.)

Did you know that the Book of Revelation states that Christ-followers will receive new names, ones which no one knows now, written on white stones? I think they'll have something to do with our identities in Christ, but that's just my pet theory.

If I could select mine, it would be Chosen.

Do you know what your real name means? If so, you can share its meaning with us. (No revealing of the real name is necessary.) If your online pseudonym is an actual name and you'd like me to research its meaning for you, I'd be glad to do so.

Maybe you don't like the name your parents gave you. If you could change it, what would it be? (First or middle or both....whatever!)

For the Christians, if you could give yourself a new name that reflects your identity in Christ, what would it be?

Friendly reminder: Keep it safe for work!