Friday, February 3, 2012

Various and Sundry, February 3

Whew! It's been a busy week! I'm taking a quick break to say, hey, look at all this stuff that other people wrote on their blogs even though I never wrote anything on mine.

Alex Thurston, who blogs about Africa, writes about his recent experience as a researcher in Northern Nigeria during a period bracketed by two terrorist attacks.  He gives some perspective on the situation as well as a personal look on what this means for Nigerians. "On the day before I left, a Nigerian friend urged me to make an effort to point out the good aspects of Nigeria whenever possible... No matter how bad the news is coming out of that country, or how many articles we see titled “Nigeria on the Brink” or some such thing, it’s worth keeping in mind the tremendous vibrancy of Nigeria, which is one the most exciting places I’ve ever been." Good to remember.

Also putting things in perspective, PeaceBang reminds us to Slow Down When Things Speed Up.  It reminded me very much of both the Isaiah and gospel reading for this Sunday--which is helpful, since I need to prepare a sermon.  And this post is certainly going to help in preparation.

I loved (of course) this article about the Art of the Obituary. Very British. Very delightful. And says what I feel about reading the obits: "In the obituary world, all human life is there – every barmy, uplifting scrap of it."

In non-obituary news, were you following the story about the homeless teen who hoped to win the Intel Science Talent Search in part so that she could get her family out of a shelter? It was incredibly moving.  She was a semi-finalist, but did not get into the finals.  But she still got a home for her family--and  a $50,000 scholarship, courtesy of AT&T and Ellen DeGeneres.

Speaking of Ellen, this clip of actress Kristin Bell having a sloth meltdown is too endearing for words:
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Finally, Stephy Drury brought this wonderful quotation from Annie LaMott to my attention.
"Age has given me what I was looking for my entire life - it has given me ME. It has provided time and experience and failures and triumphs and time-tested friends who have helped me step into the shape that was waiting for me. I fit into me now. I have an organic life, finally, not necessarily the one people imagined for me, or tried to get me to have. I have the life I longed for. I have become the woman I hardly dared imagine I could be. There are parts I don't love - until a few years ago, I had no idea that you could have cellulite on your stomach - but not only do I get along with me most of the time now, I am militantly and maternally on my own side... how kind to myself I have become, what a wonderful, tender wife I am to myself, what a loving companion."
On good days, I feel that way myself.

Have a great weekend.