essentialsaltes: (whiskey Tango but no Foxtrot)
"If a gay couple was to come in and they wanted us to provide pizzas for their wedding, we would have to say no... We are a Christian establishment... We're not discriminating against anyone, that's just our belief and anyone has the right to believe in anything. We definitely agree with the bill. I do not think it's targeting gays. I don't think it's discrimination. It's supposed to help people that have a religious belief."

No, that's what the word 'discriminating' means. Differentiating between different types of people and treating them differently. You do want to discriminate. You just want to legally discriminate. And you're happy this law will give you some cover.

"Why should I be beat over the head because they choose that lifestyle?"

Beat over the head? Beat over the head? Making fucking pizzas for paying customers?

This touches me deeply since we served pizza at our wedding.

PS "anyone has the right to believe in anything"? Such a trenchant rallying cry for the Hoosier booboisie. Put that on some protest signs and march.
essentialsaltes: (whiskey Tango but no Foxtrot)
Last weekend, I flew out to Florida for my cousin's wedding. Whirlwind tour, had a great time.

Photos from the trip.
essentialsaltes: (Whiskey Tango but no Foxtrot)
The full title is Wedlock: The True Story of the Disastrous Marriage and Remarkable Divorce of Mary Eleanor Bowes, Countess of Strathmore.

Having enjoyed her other lengthily subtitled book on How to Create the Perfect Wife, I moved on to this one, also in roughly the same period of English history. If anything, it's even better. While the young women of 'Wife' are largely ciphers (at least in the sense of having left behind written records), here both members of the disastrous marriage are vivid creatures with long paper trails.

The actual title of this book is.... Worst. Husband. Evar.

All wives (I guess I should say, all those with husbands) should be handed a copy of this book, so that they know their husband is not the worst ever.

Mary Bowes was a wealthy heiress, whose first husband was the Earl of Strathmore, who died of TB (though not before the marriage produced 5 children). Since Victorianism was still in the future, Mary dallied fairly freely during and after her marriage.

And now the highlighting feature of the Kindle will haunt you with long blockquotes.

Educated to an unusually high standard by her doting father, Mary Eleanor had established a modest reputation for her literary efforts and was fluent in several languages. More significantly, she had won acclaim in the almost exclusively male-dominated world of science as a gifted botanist. Encouraged by senior figures in London's Royal Society, she had stocked her extensive gardens and hothouses with exotic plants from around the globe and was even now planning to finance an expedition to bring back new species from southern Africa. According to one writer, she was simply “the most intelligent female botanist of the age.”
Indeed, learned women were often viewed as objects of ridicule, if not scorn, since they offended the idealized image of the acquiescent, passive female. “Nothing, I think, is more disagreeable than Learning in a Female,” declared Thomas Sherlock, the bishop of London, while Lord Bath blamed the headaches suffered by the poet and classicist Elizabeth Carter on her devotion to learning. Lady Mary Wortley Montagu confessed to “stealing” her education by surreptitiously studying Latin when her family believed she was reading “nothing but romances.” Writing to her own daughter, Lady Bute, in 1753, she urged that her granddaughter should enjoy a similarly advanced education since “learning (if she has a real taste for it) will not only make her contented but happy in it.” But equally she took pains to urge that her granddaughter should “conceal whatever learning she attains, with as much solicitude as she would hide crookedness or lameness” since revealing her knowledge would engender envy and hatred.

Now an heiress and a countess, Mary chose as her next husband...
an Irish fortune hunter )
essentialsaltes: (narrow)
Six years ago, a Methodist minister performed the wedding ceremony for his gay son. He told his superiors and didn't hear anything from them, so we went ahead with it. Only recently has a parishioner complained, leading to a trial by his church. In support of him, 50 Methodist ministers solemnized the vows of a gay couple.

Cheers to the (many) religious people in favor of marriage equality!

Update: Guilty.
essentialsaltes: (Whiskey Tango but no Foxtrot)
North Carolina Republicans have introduced a bill to change the divorce requirements from one year of living apart, to a two year waiting period with some required classes. First, I congratulate them on a law that will actually 'protect marriage' in the sense of preventing or delaying divorces. But when I put on my rules lawyer hat, I notice that since "there is no requirement that the husband and wife live separate and apart," Tarheels should clearly file for divorce immediately after they get married. That way, if the time comes, you just have to take a few classes, and all the requirements are met (assuming you made it at least two years). Probably much faster than the previous 1 year period, though an obstructionist spouse could make it difficult if he or she refuses to take the classes.
essentialsaltes: (Whiskey Tango but no Foxtrot)
Had a great time. Saw lots of friends and had good long chats with some that I haven't had the chance to in some time.

The rev left a pregnant (so to speak) pause after his call for marriage equality. I was too timid to cheer, even though I got a few cheers when I left a similar pause the last time I officiated.

Karen looked lovely, the girls looked excited, Ian was rocking the tux, and Brian had a superfluous fork in his hand as he gave his toast. Perfect.


More photos
essentialsaltes: (City Hall)
I stumbled across a 1931 court case, Roldan v. Los Angeles County, in which a Filipino man successfully won the right to marry a white woman. The state anti-miscegenation law forebade unions "between white persons and 'negros', 'mulattos', or 'Mongolians'". So in good legal fashion, the court had to determine whether Filipinos are Mongolians or not. The court sided with the theory of anthropolgist Johann Friedrich Blumenbach rather than with the theory of anthropologist Ales Hrdlicka, and judged that Filipinos are not Mongolian, but Malay. And thus the nuptials were held, since the law didn't bar such a union.

Reacting to this grotesque loophole, the state legislature acted in 1933 to prevent marriage between whites and members of the Malay race.

Fifteen years later, Perez v Sharp struck down bans on interracial marriage in California -- the first state to do so since a flurry of states did in the post-Civil War era -- and it was another 19 years before Loving v Virginia hit the Supreme Court and struck down the remaining bans in the South.
essentialsaltes: (Whiskey Tango but no Foxtrot)
Dr. Pookie and I flew up to the Bay Area Saturday morning. We also had my mom along. This was something of a great event, as Mom had not flown for more than a decade. But with our stalwart aid, she was able to make it to LAX, through security and onto the plane. It's a quick trip up and after landing in Oakland we got to the rental car kiosk and, since they were out of the midsize car I had reserved, we were ushered toward the premium option, a Mercury Grand Marquis, a truly astonishing beast, "one of the last "traditional" American full-size cars still available for retail sale". All the modern conveniences, and yet styled as though it were 1975. The thing has twice as many cylinders as any car I've ever owned, and slalomed along the road like a full ton of Detroit steel. The whole trip was about 60 miles, and I put 5 gallons of gas in it before I returned it, so you do the math.
yes, I run off at the mouth as usual )
essentialsaltes: (Whiskey Tango but no Foxtrot)
I performed my fifth wedding this afternoon, but there were several firsts. This was the first time I married a couple that I didn't (previously) know. The happy couple are coworkers of [ profile] jsadler. She was kind enough to think of me, and they were desperate enough to think of me. It was also the first time that I said something like this:

Love is a wondrous thing that binds people together, and nothing, neither race nor sexual orientation, should be allowed to hinder a couple’s freedom to love.  I know R. and A. join me in hoping that California will soon help to again lead the way in protecting marriage equality for all.

My first draft was a bit more elliptical in its support for gay marriage, but R & A were very serious about how important this issue was for them, and this is what they wanted. I was only too happy to comply.

Oh, and I think another first was that the holy text in which I concealed my cheat sheets was HP Lovecraft's Supernatural Horror in Literature.

The groom was nervous, the bride was stunning. Not everything went perfectly, but everything went beautifully. In other words, a great wedding.

But most importantly, I turned a mail-order ordination into hard currency.
essentialsaltes: (Whiskey Tango but no Foxtrot)
flickr set

The groom-cake doubled as a battle mat:
Close-up on the Battle
essentialsaltes: (Whiskey Tango but no Foxtrot)
Yesterday saw the union of [ profile] cdwfs & [ profile] zorker in Malibu. They did me the great honor of asking me to officiate. This being my fourth, I think I'm starting to get the hang of it. Even the things that didn't go smoothly went smoothly. As with Isildur in the aftermath of the Battle of Gladden Fields, the ring-bearer was betrayed by the one ring (but not the other) which slipped from its pillow and fell to earth, all but vanishing into the dusty surface. I saw it fall in slow motion and immediately leapt forward to retrieve it and get it to Lance.

The rest of the preliminaries went well, but I want to give a particular shout-out to Martha, who had the most amazing aura of serenity and stateliness as she came down the aisle.

Most of us were confused by the glamorous bride in the spectacular dress. Where was Lesley? Me, I'm just hired to marry whoever shows up, so it was no big deal. I'd just ask Cort for the new name of party #2 and go on with the show. But no, Lesley's father was at her side and when he lifted the veil, the Lesleyness shone through. Back to plan 1!

Cort was an adorable, big misty-eyed softie during the ceremony. [I confess that the closest I got to misty-eyed was much later, when Lesley and her father danced to Kermit's Rainbow Connection.] Lesley seemed simultaneously poised and thrilled to the tips of her toes.

The magic done and sealed with a kiss, it was on to pictures and the reception, schmoozing with friends new and old. My last official task was filling out the license.

Cort's uncle Eric was quite taken with my performance and seemed to think I should be doing more with my ministry. I got to lay out an ambiguous statement that, although I enjoy it on rare occasions for my friends, being a minister is not a serious part of my life. I got many other compliments, and I just want to express my gratitude to the sound guy, who made my life easy and my words heard.

I could blab on and on about the many other wonderful decorations, scenes, conversations, friends and family, but so much of it is in you-had-to-have-been-there territory that I'll spare you all.

A few pics from the wedding.


Feb. 9th, 2006 10:25 am
essentialsaltes: (Default)

Originally uploaded by Essentialsaltes.
[ profile] randbot mentioned something about one of the Enigmaversary photos being perhaps the earliest picture of [ profile] dark_of_night. To outdo it, I present this exhibit. This photo was wedged into a book as a bookmark, and has probably been there for well over a decade. It fell out recently when Rebecca started rereading the book. It's like a weird time-capsule. Click on the image and check out the flickr notes. It's weird knowing that I still have some of that stuff.
In particular, I'll mention the poster thing in the upper right. It stirred a memory, but I couldn't quite grasp it. All I could see was a yin-yang symbol. Was it maybe something that came with Jordan Mechner's Karateka (which spawned Prince of Persia, which spawned many more Princes of Persia). No.... After locating the Mother of all Apple // game lists, I finally figured it out:

Moebius: The Orb of Celestial Harmony. I still have that headband, too.


Oh, and here's a more recent picture of Becca, taken by [ profile] the_undertow at the wedding. Click for more bigness:

She's got the same cute smile! Aw!
essentialsaltes: (Whiskey Tango but no Foxtrot)
Let us cast our minds back in time to a moment when I was still single. I want to recap some of the other things that went on in that crazy period. Thursday night before the wedding, the Tice clan got together to go visit the Magic Castle, under the kind auspices of our friend Varoujan, who's a member. It was a fine night....

doodle-oodle-oo... doodle-oodle-oo )
essentialsaltes: (Whiskey)

photo courtesy of [ profile] aaronjv

Quick (?) Recap )
essentialsaltes: (Yellowstone Falls)
Mostly, I just wanted to show everyone one of the masks that Becca's twin made for the wedding, but nephthys had a suitable meme. Thus:

Post your picture in my journal as a comment. If possible, use a picture that none of your journal buddies have seen before. It will only take a few minutes to do! Then post this sentence in your journal so others can show you who they are as well!

meme sheep go baa )
essentialsaltes: (essentialsaltes)
Some of you dear readers were skeptical of Katrina victims blowing their FEMA money on handbags and strippers. Some of the reports have been substantiated, but I think it's clear that these are atypical cases.
bla bla bla )
essentialsaltes: (essentialsaltes)
Yesterday at work, the UPS guy came with a handtruck brimming with packages. All for me! Well, okay and the fiancee, too. It was a big batch o' coincidentally arriving wedding prezzies. It seems our family and friends know us well, since the collection of loot included 15 knives. I think that, instead of a cake cutting, maybe we'll have a knife-throwing exhibition. We also scored a blender, despite not having one on the amazon registry. They are apparently inescapable. I think Craig and Jaime got 3. To be fair though, our current one could be put out to pasture since part of the base was long ago melted in a freakish radiation accident.
But Rebecca was most excited by the big-ass silver bowl. It's a good thing she likes looking at it, because there's nowhere to store it. Don't get me wrong -- I dig it, too.

In other news....

Quarterback goes 4 for 5, with 3 touchdowns? Eh... pretty good... for a girl.

A brilliant statue Down Under.

Not that any one really deserves to be eaten by bears, but...


Oct. 3rd, 2005 11:15 am
essentialsaltes: (Internet Disease)
Last week a couple packages arrived. One from my grandparents, and one from Becca's grandmother. The one from my grandfolks had some of grandpa's tie pins, including a nice Egyptian one bought at the Tut exhibit in the 70's. There was also some jewelry made by grandma for Becca. I'm glad grandma and the other Red Hat Ladies get together and play with beads and wires and things, but I hope she wasn't intending this to be what Rebecca wears for the wedding. Not that it's hideous or anything, but it really doesn't quite match the theme. The box also contained some Disney merchandise that was being regifted. It's a good thing they already bought us china, because a regifted set of four Mickey Mouse-headed cheese knives really would not have done as a wedding present.

In contrast, the package from Becca's grandma was full of old family treasures and guilt. An ancient box for calling cards or CDV's. A little gnomish doll of great sentimental value to a departed female ancestor. The least tattered of Grandpa Lease's remaining monogrammed handkerchiefs. And a delicate French teacup and saucer with handpainted violets. When she decided to give us the teacup (her letter reads) she first put it away out of sight in a cupboard so that she could get used to not seeing it any more. Augh!

Sunday we were visited by Dad and Lois. Rebecca has asked Lois to handle her make-up for the wedding, so a trial run was undertaken. Lois's little travelcase for make-up resembled a steamer trunk in size. It was pretty impressive. While Dad and I watched some football, they got busy with the spackle and trowels. But it certainly turned out nicely, with even some slight visible reminders of Rebecca's actual face.
Afterwards, the four of us met up with Craig and Jaime at Jerry's Deli and had a good lunch. From there we hit Robinson's Beautilities so people could scope out costume ideas and peripherals. Dad and Lois once again announced that they're on the lookout for some leatherbound books (for decorative purposes only!) so I steered them toward Sam: Johnson's, which is close to Robinson's. Then we headed back for home and left them to their browsing.

The grandparently packages also spurred me into some long-delayed activity. Namely, genealogy. Rebecca had once computerized her lengthy geneaology, but it was lost in the great crash of the 199-something or other. I knew it was a sore loss, and with the continuing deluge of heirlooms from Grandma Lease, it was getting more and more difficult to keep track of what came from whom. So working in secret, I have now restored her family tree.
I've gone through just about all of the data in her genealogy folder, but looking online, there is a cornucopia of additional information out there on the Strong family and its many descendants. My collector-urge to be complete is warring with my sanity at this point. I will merely point out a couple of Rebecca's distant cousins who are also direct descendants of Elder John Strong. Indeed, they're a little closer than that, since Preserved Strong is a direct ancestor of Becca.

By adding our hairy baby, Changeling, I've linked my family tree to Rebecca's and now have the unenviable task of trying to add a little more detail to my own family. I've got some good info on my mother's mother's side. And a little bit on the Tice side, which hopefully I can work back until I can join it up with 4. Hans Matthias (4) Theiss, who was the first 'Tice' to come to America, settling in the area where there are still some distant Tice relatives living to this day.
essentialsaltes: (Mr. Gruff)
Michael Newdow wins round one in his second attempt to remove 'under God' from the Pledge of Allegiance.

On my birthday even. Thank you, uncaring materialistic universe! You shouldn't have!

No doubt the case will find its way to the Supremes; it'll be interesting to see whether the new line-up will have any obvious effect on the ultimate decision.

In other news, Rebecca's sister made some unbelievably outstanding masks for the wedding. Really fabulous work. Of course, Emily is such the perfectionist that she won't readily accept compliments. There's modesty and then there's false modesty and finally there's stupid modesty.
essentialsaltes: (essentialsaltes)
Furious activity all weekend long, it seemed. Partially instigated by ants, who have located more tiny cracks and holes in our ancient house than I can believe. They have fiendishly come up with back-up plan after back-up plan. Earlier this summer, we had sort of a detente in place with the ants, but it seems that the cold war is hotting up.
Saturday morning, we poked around a bit in the area near the Culver Hotel, where many family members will be staying for the wedding. Had lunch at a nice French cafe near the Washington Building. Saturday evening featured duelling birthday parties: with [ profile] ladyeuthanasia (Happy Birthday!) getting the short end of the stick as far as our presence was concerned. But it looks like she had a great time even without our illlustrious selves. We ventured into the wilds of Outer Arcadia for margaritas and karaoke chez McInnis. I even caught a glimpse or two of the increasingly mythical Cheryl.
Sunday was full of more ants and chores, followed by dinner at San Gennaro, which is unwittingly vying for catering duties at the wedding. The food was good, but not as good as what we had last weekend at Antica Pizzeria. Unfortunately, Antica seems reluctant to offer catering info.
Later, we went to the Tut exhibit at LACMA. Although the exhibit has been (rightly) badmouthed for being expensive and having only a limited selection of pieces from Tut's tomb, it was still very worth while. Some of the more interesting things were from Akhenaton's reign, including this piece, demonstrating Akhenaton's wacky new sun-disk religion. There's also a nice bust with the exaggerated features that demonstrate his divinity.
From Tut's tomb, there's plenty of really beautiful crafted items. But the old boy himself and his sarcophagus, are still back in Cairo. Nevertheless, they had some nice animated displays that showed the elaborate Russian-doll layers of his sarcophagi.


essentialsaltes: (Default)

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