10:00 pm • Thursday • November 1, 2012
I’m confused. People have seen the sink of boredom Star Wars is?
BTW. Yoda. Il est Franch, n’est çe pas?
Pretty sure Leia could kick every Disney Princess ass from Snow White to Rapunzel, with the possible exception of Mulan (which I haven’t actually seen).
@mellbell: Mulan rulz. She’s a total action hero.
@Benedick: or German – save the verb until the end.
As Disney matures and cranks out more drivel for the masses, will we one day see Steamboat Jar Jar’s Willie?
Mouse care not I.
TJ: Hooray, it’s the day when IanJ just keeps jamming that ol’ foot in his mouth.
@¡Andrew!: Technically she isn’t a princess, though. She’s a General, which is better.
I hate when that happens. Foot tastes terrible.
@ManchuCandidate: Indeed. In this particular case, I even set myself up for it. I’m starting to wonder if I have some kind of actual inbuilt inability to understand religion. Do not understand. Flippin and Tomm, nothing to do with other people’s religion at all, before we even go there.
I’ve been sort of vaguely struggling with this for a few years now, and I think at this point that maybe I’m just incapable of understanding. I see people who seem to derive comfort from religion, and I have no reason to doubt them, except that I fundamentally don’t get it. I’ve been reading some Hornblower stories, and Hornblower himself is tone-deaf, wondering repeatedly if everyone else is pretending to enjoy music because it’s the thing to do, even though it all just sounds like crashing, annoying noise to him. That’s how I feel about religion. Utter failure to grok.
Naturally, this isn’t how most people in the world think (as far as I can tell). Cue pedal-oral interaction protocol.
@blogenfreude: Back when I was a dirty (dirtier) hippy serving my country in Peace Corps, I had to learn Georgian, which also has the verb at the sentence. I retrained my brain to do this by telling myself, “Speak like Yoda!”
@IanJ: Why is this a foot-in-mouth sentiment? It seems pretty matter of fact to me. I have to admit, hearing an athiest say “I don’t get religion” is not exactly revelatory to me.
@Tommmcatt: While I luuuuve Mulan, I had a rage blackout over the new “Latina” princess, Sofia, who happens to be white, with auburn hair and blue eyes. Also, she’s a closet Latina, so apparently they’re never going to discuss anything relevant to her alleged heritage. Do they have any idea how gawdam hard it is to find dolls for girls of color that look like them, and the impact that has on their self-worth and self-esteem??? The Spanish-speaking market is approximately 1/5 of the world’s population, so it’s a mystery how they could have fucked that up so severely.
Note to self: Calm, calm… deep breaths, deep breaths… think about Spanish soccer players instead.
@IanJ: I first became aware of my atheism during childhood, when my parents took us to some really nutty churches–including the tongue-talking, Talibangelical ones–before settling on a particularly nasty Southern Baptist one (UGH!). People would claim that Gawd was talking to/through them. I just heard a dial tone.
@IanJ: I grok it. I just don’t agree with it.
But faith as such isn’t really an issue in these parts, or shouldn’t be. Charlatans are the issue.
@flippin eck: The foot in mouth part is that every time I try to explain what the hell’s going on in my twisted up noggin, it comes out sounding like I hate religious people or something, which is completely not the case. I’ve had to do a stop-rewind-redo several times in the last 24 hours.
It comes in when trying to reconcile the extremely negative reaction I had to an incident a few years back where I asked someone how their Christmas was, and he informed me angrily that he was Jewish, was generally rude to me, slammed the door a few times, accused me of being too stupid to recognize the obvious signs of his Jewishness, etc. I apologized profusely, and when given the chance to offer a similar apology (or any apology at all, or even a “I was having a rough time” non-apology), he was silent. It took me until last night, in conversation with some friends about the incident, to realize that I was not (as I feared) upset at him being Jewish, but rather upset at him lacking sufficient social graces to iron over the difficulty.
And this is where it gets tough: I expect that everyone I deal with personally can be reasonably polite with each other. Then he wasn’t, ostensibly because I had deeply offended his religious faith. Now we’re on territory where I Don’t Get It. All I did was mis-name the end-of-year festival he prefers. I understand that the Jews have been persecuted for millenia. I understand that it was more or less wrong of me to assume Christmas was a default (to me, “Christmas” describes a particularly annoying highly-marketed time between approximately Thanksgiving and New Years, with no religious significance whatsoever; it’s just a word for a month-plus period at the end of the year). I don’t understand how this otherwise kind and gently spoken person I’d known for ten years suddenly became frosty, angry, and immoveable due to what to me is a minor point of trivia. I find myself unwilling to trust him any more, which pretty much shitcans the professional relationship we had (he was my GP, a position which trades pretty heavily on trust).
Talking about that kind of thing (and I suspect I’ve stepped in it again, but it usually takes me a day or two of reflection to realize it) is remarkably difficult without sounding like an intolerant douchebag. That’s where the foot-in-mouth stuff comes from. Just let me know gently what I said wrong this time, ok?
@IanJ: You didn’t say or do anything wrong. There’s nothing offensive about saying you don’t understand why people are religious. I was just baffled because I honestly don’t understand why this would be considered surprising or offensive to anyone, religious or otherwise. It sounds to me like your coworker’s problem was not religion-based but rather being-an-asshole-based.
For the record, even though I call myself Christian, I have a much more touch-and-go relationship with the adjective religious. I’d be cool with it if the term simply meant “faith-having person who likes to hang out and worship with other faith-having people sometimes,” but it has many more (often negative) connotations that I don’t care for. I don’t know if your non-groking is inclusive of both religious people and faith-having people, but either way it’s not offensive.
I dunno. It seems to me the problem is more with him. If he expects to everyone to instinctively know who everyone’s religion is then he has a problem.
Thanks in large part to a (near) ethnic stereotype, I have been on the other end where people assume I’m a Christian because I am of Korean descent. They are horrified when I correct them (gently) that I’m not.
I have to admit that Community’s (a show I only recently got into with a vengeance) 1st season Xmas episode made me laugh when everyone had issues with everyone’s faith at that time of year.
@ManchuCandidate: Community is superb. I absolutely love that show’s total lunacy. In one word: Paintball.
@IanJ: Dude, you are not the problem here. Look at it this way, if the inaccurate statement was swapped, and you accidentally wished a Christian “Happy Haunikah” (sorry Baked and Dodger for the spelling), and that person got bent out of shape, we’d call that person an anti-Semite- and we’d clearly and correctly identify them as the problem. You apologised. Anything beyond that is somebody else’s problem.
@flippin eck: I think of myself as a spiritual person who expresses their spirituity in a Christian context. Not a big fan of “religion” per se.
Community is really a Nerd’s Nerd show. The paintball eps were amazing.
The Big Bang Theory makes me all sad. It’s not all that clever and actually makes me want to strangle Sheldon Cooper whose petulant childish behavior reminds me of my former housemate (except minus 80-100 IQ points and add about 120 pounds.)
OMG, I have the Snorg girl in the MSNBC ad. Memories of the old days.
@Mistress Cynica: As creepy as those are now (the Original Girl didn’t look so young, did she?), I’d take that ad over the one for the Senate challenger in my home state, paid for by FreedomWorks.
I’m so tired of robocalls. At least in VA I have no landline so I’m not pestered. And do you know how unsatisfying it is to try and argue with a recording? Deeply. The least those whiny Republicans could do is put a live person on the line if you think you can influence my Independent vote.
Thanks everyone. It’s very encouraging to hear your reactions to my story. One of the things about this kind of social incomprehension is that I have to just follow the rules, and hope I don’t fuck up. I don’t understand the rules, and they don’t make any logical sense (for instance, why is it ok to be offended by me saying “Christmas” to a Jew, but a Christian being offended by saying “Hannukah” is anti-Semitic?). Thus, whenever I find myself in a situation where I might have to apply the religion rules, I get all antsy, which makes me more likely to break them. Huzzah.
Flippin’ and Catt: in this discussion, I am using “religious” in the most neutral way possible, simply as a descriptor of someone who has a belief system shared by others. If I want to call someone a name, I usually head right for “zealot” or “extremist.”
The frustrating part of all this is that until my Xmas/Hannukah blunder, he was a perfectly sweet guy who I was happy to work with. He may still be, but that example of non-linearity (and it was a carefully-tested non-linearity, as my big formal apology happened 6 months after the event, which had been surrounded by the kind of hurried and improvised “Oh shit, I’m so sorry!” apologies that may or may not stick) was so extreme that I’m unwilling to place any trust in our relationship any more.
@IanJ: I stick with “Happy Holidays,” if I say anything at all.
I still say, “Bless you” when people sneeze, but I’m moving away from saying anything. If I do “bless” someone, it’s usually, “God bless you [derp], says the atheist.”
People do this goofy crap all the time outside of religion.
If he’s taking this xmas/chanukah stuff to the nth, be glad he doesn’t have a male toddler, and you said, “Oh, she’s so cute!”
People are weird.
Let’s go to Beth’s Cafe this weekend.
DrinkyClown is having a bris-day party this weekend. Punk vs. Disco in Belltown. PM him or me, and yes, I’m going as Chaka.
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