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Beat like a rug

So I was in New Orleans last weekend. My Sunday flight came into Phoenix at 0930, so I had the day ahead of me once we were home. Monday was a loooong day, since I start work at 0800, then had my Taste of Judaism class from 6 to 8 pm. But I'd woken up pretty energetic, and my batteries are only running low now.

Steve has been approved by the Arizona State Bar, and once he's paid his bar dues, he'll be good to go in about 14 days. Relief! The Bar kept kicking back his application, asking more questions about his past. They finally said yes though, so the work prospects increase massively.

For some reason, we always struggle financially in August. It hasn't been as bad for the past couple or three years, but it was tight. Between my trip to New Orleans, car maintenance, and other hassles, the best thing to do this weekend is just hunker down. We have plenty to watch on Hulu and Netflix and I'm going to pick up a rotiserie chicken, some eggs, and other things for cooking at home. This is complicated by not having an indoor stove or oven since we got a bum oven from Ikea and they are replacing it on Monday.

Sleeping in tomorrow, that's for sure.

45 minutes till Caturday!

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Tomorrow I attend the first of the three pre-classes for people interested in Judaism. I've found a Reform synagogue where I feel comfortable. I've been wanting a congregation of some sort for some time, and this temple is very keen on responsible Kabalah, does not require belief in a literal G-d (neither does Kabalah), and fits my social justice agenda very well. We will see where this strange torpedo takes me.

Half a century down, a full century to go!

To paraphrase Rob Lowe's character on "Parks and Recreation": They say the first person to live to 150 has already been born. I believe myself to be that person.

My birthday was Monday the 10th, and I was working, so I decided to celebrate during the weekend. I started off on a pious note, attending Kabbalat Shabbat (preceded by Chardonnay Shabbat in the social hall, cause I am always down for wine and cheese) at Temple Emanu-El, as described elsewhere.

My favourite meal of the day is breakfast, so Steve and I went to The Good Egg to have it. The pancakes and French toast didn't appeal; they looked way too sugary, so I ended up with an egg, gruyere, turkey and spinach sandwich on a brioche roll. Saturday was uneventful, which is fine.

On Sunday, I'd announced that I'd be having a lunch at El Charro. This is the Oro Valley branch of a restaurant that's been in Tucson since 1922, and the original location is still open. I like the Oro Valley location better because it's big and open and modern, whereas the old location is in a very old adobe house and dark and close. Dawn, Jake, and Sarah came with us. Bean! had just arrived in Arizona from Korea, and he showed up with the Beanparents so we had a nice party. I had asked Bean! if he could find me a Tanzo travelers notebook, which they don't ship outside Korea and which is apparently hard to find even in Korea. It has four elastic bands and accommodates larger notebooks. He brought me one, in red, and I was so happy. It fits the little cahiers Steve got me for my birthday.

After lunch and my tres leches cake (the staff sang happy birthday. A sombrero was involved) we went to the hacienda for a little bit. I didn't need to eat again that day.

Monday my boss gave me a gift card for some upscale restaurants because she knows I'm a foodie. I was taken to lunch at Sushi Cho which was okay; I admit to having some places in town I prefer but this was still nice. I'm glad I have a job with such great co-workers; as people who knew me in 2004 are aware, this has not always been the case!

Under pressure

SINUS pressure that is. It's monsoon season, and the sky really wants to rain but it can't. This means that the temperature started at 102, dropped to 80, and my sinuses don't know what to do with their little selves.

I've spent the day watching Supernatural and Fringe on Netflix. I'm 10 episodes into Supernatural and it's just not grabbing me. I hear that it gets really good by season 3, but do I want to sit through 44 episodes of "meh" to get there?

Fringe, on the other hand, has got me hard. It is like the X-Files in that it's a branch of the FBI investigating strange phenomena, but they dispense with all the inter-agency politics and know from episode 1 what they're investigating. It turns out to be alternate universes and it is just nuts. I finished season 2 today.

The Brightly Coloured Object

I am really, really liking my iPhone 6. My only complaint about it is minor; when I turn it sideways it's a little too large for my hands to type. That's it, that's the only complaint. I got a 64 gb one because it eliminates the need for any other device. I gave my iPod Nano to Steve, who seems to have re-formed it to his liking.

On his recommendation, I paid $2.99 at the App Store for a podcast app called Downcast. Unlike the podcast app native to iDevices, I don't need to plug the phone to iTunes to sync podcasts. It downloads as soon as it's in wifi, and podcasts auto-delete as soon as I'm done listening. I've discovered a near-daily show called Real Ghost Stories that I'm enjoying as brain candy.

The real discovery has been iTunes U. Currently, I'm listening to a lecture series on the history of jazz, and it's free! I also put on a series on Byzantine theology because why not. I can also listen to foreign language lessons, and am trying to decide on what history classes would be useful and interesting to me.

Materialism Day

Well, it depends on what you consider "materialism".

Steve wanted to go to Ikea to look at drawers and different ways of organizing our kitchen shelves. So we drove up to Tempe to the store and walked out with quite a number of items, none of which were actually related to what he was looking for. We got some containers to tidy up the kitchen sink (which is a perennial mess), a bamboo holder for cookbooks or a tablet showing a recipe, an ice cream scoop and some other things. I also got a $13 end table that is just the right height for me to paint my Space Marine miniatures. If I'm sitting on the floor, the surface of the table is just below eye level so I can get in very close. We also got a DVD shelf unit to replace the one Bucky knocked over a few months ago. Bucky loves to push things.

After that, we were hungry so we met with Mandel for an impromptu meeting of Steves, Inc. Resolved: Parks & Recreation is a great show.

We drove back to Marana, then kept going to Cortaro Road to the Verizon store. Since our two year contract was over, we removed features we weren't using and I got my iPhone 6. I already really like it, although I have yet to test the camera or the sound quality. I will later. The case was waiting for me in a box when we got back to the house, so the "brightly coloured object" has been obtained.

Looking forward to a day at home tomorrow!

Brightly Coloured Objects!

First off, Happy Canada Day! Independence Day is this weekend, so we'll probably celebrate by watching the musical "1776" again.

Next, I have commented on FaceBook that I have been on this hunt for a "brightly coloured object that will solve all my problems". I'm due for an upgrade on my iPhone, and I thought, if I got a bright and happy case for it, I could trick my mind into thinking the object of my dreams has been acquired.

This is the case I bought on Amazon. The phone will come along later:

Maybe it's me turning 50, but suddenly cheerful colours appeal. I have a lot of turquoise and purple, and want to jazz it up a little with oranges and yellows. Just tasteful pops of it. I also want more jewelry that isn't blue; most of mine is and the trend needs to stop.

End of weekend thoughts

I unfriended someone on FaceBook who I'd been meaning to unfriend for a while. Referring to this weekend as "the faggotizing of America" was precisely what I needed. Bye!

I didn't overlay the Pride flag over my FB userpic because I don't want to look like everyone else, because I'm not everyone else. Those who know me know I'm very happy, and I don't need to follow a crowd to show it.

I did go into a bad depression though today. I'm very sensitive to weather change and with monsoons causing a daily up-and-down of barometric pressure, I was in a bad way. I wanted nachos and Steve took me to Chuy's Mesquite Grill, which looks like a San Diego fish taco place without being in San Diego. I had a half order of chicken nachos and a Dos Equis, which cheered me up. Then I came home, continued reading Dion Fortune's book on the Kabalah and fell asleep for two hours. I don't need dinner, that's for sure.

Finally, I have to make the observation that when the Supreme Court makes a decision I like, it's invariably bad law. When they make a law whose result I hate, it is always on point. The same sex marriage decision was made very poorly, using licensing laws rather than contracts, which would have been better. Contracts must be made by people over 18, and through full faith and credit, respected nationwide. No chance of slippery slope there. Also, appealing to emotion in a SCOTUS decision is unprofessional and irrelevant. "Love" is not a reason to make law just as "national security concerns" is not a reason for dissent. (Yes, I am referencing two different laws.) In contrast, the Hobby Lobby decision was absolutely flawless law but I hate the result. I want a well-thought-out decision that makes me glad. Surely that isn't too much to ask, is it?
The only objections to same-sex marriage are from those whose religions forbid it. Well, some religions forbid pork, and yet there is bacon sold in grocery stores. I need to bring out my religious minister's credentials and start doing some weddings.


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