Sitting back, enjoying the breeze and kvetching

Sunday, April 29, 2007

Socks and sandals?

Saint Pat has been devoting some prayer time to this doctrinal question, and has the answer:

"Yes," if you live subtropical or tropical climes. I'm noticing more priests tapping into the trend.

Here in Florida, where it is pretty hot 9 out of 12 months of the year and hellish hot the other three, it's just too fazoolin miserable with heavy dress shoes on. One simply dies, darlings, behind the altar rail, what with heavy robes on over street clothes. Wearing shiny black shoes that don't let any air circulate is the straw that broke the camel's back.

Even on weekdays, wearing closed-in shoes all day makes for hot, stinky-fungual feet. Let the air in! Let the sun shine on those dogs whenever possible.

Sensitive to the fact some parishioners might not want to look at the priest's toenails while receiving the communion wafer, priests wear modesty-protecting socks with their sandals. Socks are usually black, to match their slacks, I might add; no priests in shorts, though I have seen some chalicers in shorts, beneath their robes. No hairy calves showing.

Wearing socks prevents chafing from sandal straps. It also keeps tootsies warm on those occasional chilly mornings in winter.

Socks and sandals are apparently a major controversy in the halls of academia, also. I found these photos to filch at The Daily Transcript, a site devoted to hot ongoing debates in scientific circles, such as, "Is it only men who wear socks with sandals?" and, "Does wearing socks with sandals in the lab really protect tootsies from acid spills?"

As for me, I only wear socks with sandals in the wintertime, when I want a little warmth, but still want some air. But I usually opt for closed-in shoes when it's that chilly.

In hot weather, I chalice whilst wearing sandals or slide-ons, no socks.

Thursday, April 26, 2007

Poor Richard

Poor Richard. And Alec. And poor Hugh.

They're all in trouble, these bad, bad boys:

And he only kissed her on the cheek

There's an arrest warrant out for Richard Gere in India. Good thing for him he isn't there, or he would be arrested for obscenity for kissing Bollywood actress Shilpa Shetty a couple of weeks ago, at an AIDS awareness fundraiser.

Victim Shetty has also been accused of vulgarity and obscenity. India, like most extremely Puritanical cultures, is quick to blame the woman when the rules are transgressed.

Accusing him, and especially her, of pornography seems a little extreme, since he only kissed her on the cheek, after bending her back in a dance move he learned for a movie.

I saw a video clip of the incident today. Shetty's extreme discomfort is obvious on her face. It doesn't look like Gere was aware of it, and he surely meant her no harm, but here's a lesson: be careful about presuming to grab and kiss someone.

The same embarrassed smile spread across Halle Berry's face at the Oscars a few years ago, after actor Adrien Brody grabbed and kissed her (full bore on the mouth) without her permission, as she presented him an Oscar.

Guys, it really isn't OK to grab and kiss a gal without her consent, even if you're in front of a crowd at an entertainment event. It is a violation of a person's body.

Beware the beans

What can one say? It isn't Hugh Grant's first arrest.

This one apparently doesn't involve sex. Hugh was allegedly annoyed by a photographer while he was out jogging. Hitting and kicking the offending paparazzi wasn't enough; Hugh had to throw a container of baked beans at the guy, too.

Hugh was arrested for assault and released. He's not talking, and we really don't know what set him off.

Maybe he had been studying Alec Baldwin's moves too long. Baldwin's had his troubles in the past for going after nosy photographers. Temper, temper.

He's sorry, so sorry

Alec Baldwin's had a reputation for a bad temper for a long time, and he's had his own altercations with paparazzi.

Now he's apologized to his 11-year-old daughter for calling her "a thoughtless little pig."


Does he really get it? Does he really understand how damaging his rant was? Somehow, I don't think so.

Baldwin's going to be working with celebrity therapist Doctor Phil, who made an on-air appeal to the actor. (Amazing how things work in Hollywood.) Good, if Doctor Phil can get through to him -- let's see how good Dr. Phil is. Baldwin needs some heavy-duty counseling.

I feel for the guy -- his pain and torment come through in the tape. Buttons were being pushed that had nothing to do with his daughter or marriage, but probably went back to his childhood and feelings of rejection and inferiority. He will never have a relationship with his daughter if he doesn't learn to control that flowing volcano of rage.

Baldwin is talking about leaving acting, apparently for something more philanthropic. Maybe he's had an epiphany, or maybe he just hit male menopause.

I'm sure his ex-wife, Kim Basinger, knows how to push his buttons to her advantage in the custody fight. She seems to have no clue how damaging that tape going public is for her young daughter.

It's like The War of the Roses in unending bitterness and battle. Get a grip, alleged adults, and think of your daughter's future.

Wednesday, April 18, 2007

Good style counts in actions, too

Saint Pat saw this in the Miami Herald yesterday and couldn't help but giggle a bit at the image of a nation outraged at Richard Gere.

When in Rome, or India, try not to offend the locals, darlings. Style counts in actions, as well as clothes.

Kisses get Gere in trouble in India

Gere in an earlier, January appearance

Angry crowds in several Indian cities burned effigies of Richard Gere on Monday after he swept a popular Bollywood actress into his arms and kissed her several times during an AIDS awareness event.

Photographs of the 57-year-old actor embracing Shilpa Shetty and kissing her on the cheek at an HIV/AIDS awareness event in New Delhi were splashed across Monday's front pages in India -- a country where sex and public displays of affection are largely taboo.

In Mumbai, members of the right-wing Hindu nationalist group Shiv Sena beat burning effigies of Gere with sticks and set fire to glamorous shots of Shetty.

Similar protests broke out in other cities, including Varanasi, Hinduism's holiest city, and in the northern town of Meerut, where crowds chanted, ``Down with Shilpa Shetty!''

The two appeared at a press conference in New Delhi on Sunday to highlight the HIV/AIDS epidemic among India's truck drivers. In front of a cheering crowd, Gere kissed the giggling Shetty on the hand, then kissed her on both cheeks before bending her in a full embrace to kiss her cheek again.

''This is a bit too much,'' Shetty said after the embrace.

On Monday, Shetty tried to stamp out the controversy.

''I understand this is his culture, not ours. But this was not such a big thing or so obscene for people to overreact in such manner,'' she told the Press Trust of India news agency.

''I understand people's sentiments, but I don't want a foreigner to take bad memories from here,'' PTI quoted her as saying.

If sex is taboo in India, a lot of people break the taboo, judging from the size of the population. Maybe they just *pretend* they don't have sex.

Ah, well. Gere should be cut a little slack -- it sounds like he was there to do a good thing.

Monday, April 16, 2007

A casual wear must-have

This can only mean the talk we heard was true, that at a clergy meeting a couple of weeks ago, Bp. Howe told clergy he would likely leave the Episcopal Church after he retires. Howe said he wouldn't try to take any parishes, etc., with him.

If the text on the tee-shirt is hard to read, it says, "Bishop Howe can leave the Episcopal Church if he wants, but I will remain Episcopal."

I think I shall wear it next time I visit diocesan offices. That will be a long time from now, especially if I wait for an invitation. Bishop Howe will probably have already retired to the church of Nigeria or AMiA by then. Actually, it will be sweater weather in that hot place, by then.

Tip o' the halo to Paul (A.) who spotted the T over at Café Press.

Saturday, April 14, 2007

Easter: Fashion Disaster

It was a strange Easter in Central Florida, at least weather-wise. After a week or two of hot weather, it suddenly cooled down to a low of 40 degrees Easter morning.

This threw everyone in confusion. It hardly ever gets that cold even at Christmas, though we hope for it then, so we can wear our holiday-decorated sweaters and such. But it's not supposed to be cold at Easter.

Oooh, ach, they tried valiantly, the parishioners at our little church. Some came out with their straw Easter hats (though they probably wished for ski hats) and light-cool summerweight tea dresses, with chill-pimples all over their bare, shivering arms. Some put winter coats over such gear, adding a touch of incongruity to the festivities. Some wore sweaters and jeans. Some (like me) reached into the backs of their closet and wore whatever longsleeve outfit they could find.

It was a fashion Tower of Babel.

Imagine the kiddies hunting Easter eggs with their poor little bare legs hanging out.

The good news is, none of that made any difference. Here is what matters: Christ is risen indeed, alleluia, and we shall continue the celebration!