Here There and Everywhere

Expat wanderer

Sex or Backbiting?

Most of you know, I do the daily readings from The Lectionary (you can always click on it from my Blogroll, down to the right) as part of my spiritual discipline. I also read the daily meditations on Forward Movement, (also in the blogroll.)

Rarely do I share them with you, but this one is where Christianity and Islam are so closely intertwined that I dance for joy – that much can be forgiven to one who loves, but our tongues get us into a lot of trouble.

I know that backbiting is one of the great sins to be avoided during the upcoming holy season of Ramadan, too.

James 3:1-12 The tongue is a fire…a world of iniquity…a restless evil, full of deadly poison.

I sometimes wonder if the churchfolk who seem obsessed with sexual behavior are reading the same Bible I am. If I said that someone was “living in sin,” I know what parts of the body you’d think I was talking about. Yet if it were James or other New Testament authors talking, they would probably be referring to the tongue.

For every reference in the New Testament to sins involving sex, there must be ten concerning speech. Why? Because while sex is certainly one form of communication, speech is a more potent one in the daily life of a congregation. Words have power.

God creates the world and keeps in touch with it, after all, by his Word; and words are how we keep in touch with each other. But the word that can create can also destroy–a reputation, an institution, a life. Words tell us who and how we are and whether we belong; words bind the community together-or tear it apart. Sexual misconduct is bad–and easy to recognize as bad.

The sniping, backbiting, spite, and deceit that go on in some communities are often hard to see, let alone root out. Yet their effect is more corrosive over the long term. How did our priorities get so mixed up?

PRAY for the Diocese of South Carolina (United States)

Ps 38 * 119:25-48; 1 Kings 9:24-10:13; Mark 15:1-11

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September 5, 2007 Posted by | Blogroll, Books, Communication, Community, Cross Cultural, Language, Ramadan, Spiritual, Words | 4 Comments

Yemeni Star

I give up.

I am throwing myself on your mercy.

A week ago, Adventure Man heard a morning radio show on 99.7, “Superstation”, in which a meteorologist at the Kuwait Airport mentioned a particular star, which when it appears above the horizon in Kuwait, the ancient inhabitants would know that cooler temperatures were on the way.

Adventure Man is sure he called it The Yemeni Star, because it appeared over the horizon in the general direction of Yemen.

I’ve google’d it to death and can’t find anything. I called in the superstar Googler, Little Diamond and even she had to admit defeat.

Kuwaiti friends and bloggers – please, ask your elders if they know of the Yemeni Star. I think the weatherman said it was the nomadic peoples who would watch for it. I am guessing that in Kuwait, there are few nomads left, but a great number of descendants of nomadic peoples. Or, if you have an astronomer, or weather person in your family, could you ask them?

I don’t know why it matters to me, but it does.

September 5, 2007 Posted by | Blogging, Community, Cross Cultural, Cultural, ExPat Life, Generational, Kuwait, Local Lore, Random Musings, Weather | 14 Comments

The Big Test

Sure, having a three day weekend is a GREAT way to introduce a change . . . kind of like “let them eat cake!” But today and tomorrow are the real tests. Today is the first day that is not a half day off / beginning of weekend, and tomorrow is a WORKING Thursday for Kuwaitis – let the grumbling begin!

Change is always disruptive. A year from now, it will all be comfortable, but it will take some time to get used to the new way of doing things. Businesses who deal with the outside world will have more days in common. I believe that Saudi Arabia and Oman are the only ones still on the Thursday – Friday weekend.

In truth, it has no effect on us. Adventure Man takes Friday for his day off and works the other six days – nothing changes. When he is around, I drop my work and spend time with him.

But this weekend is going to be the BIG adjustment.

(For my non-Kuwait friends, we have had a serious drop in temperatures – at 8 in the morning, it is only 88°, not the 100 degrees of earlier in the week. The expected high for today, though is a cool Fall September 114° F/ 46° C.)

September 5, 2007 Posted by | Community, Cultural, ExPat Life, Kuwait, Living Conditions, News, Social Issues, Weather | 3 Comments

WordPress: Where Did Feedback Go?

When I first joined WordPress, there was a place you could click at the top of the page and write FeedBack. What was really really cool was that WordPress was small enough that you usually got an answer on the same day, even if your question was really stupid, like a lot of mine were, because I was just beginning.

There is a great FAQ place, but I couldn’t always understand the answers. Like you know when you know the meaning of each individual word, but when they are strung together, it might as well be an alien language from outer space, you just can’t get the meaning?

So today I wanted to give them some feedback – and FeedBack is GONE! They didn’t even say anything! It’s just gone! Or . . . . am I missing something? At the bottom of my dashboard, it says “use the feedback link at the top right of your page” but . . . am I going blind? I don’t see the feedback link anymore?

Here is what I want:

I love it that I can see statistics for each individual post. Some of my wierdest posts – like Tudo’s Vietnamese Restaurant in Pensacola written back in March can still get a high number of hits, and I like being able to see a post’s history.

And what I would really like is to be able to see ALL my posts in rank order by the number of hits. So like then I could see at a glance what my Top 10, Top 25 were, all time, through the history of the blog.

But . . .WordPress, you no longer want any feedback?

September 5, 2007 Posted by | Blogging, Bureaucracy, Communication, Community, Customer Service, Technical Issue, WordPress | 1 Comment

DementoCat

OK, OK, No more after a while, just this one last one. Yesterday, as I was uploading the photo of the Qatteri Cat and his babies, he was zonked out on the couch, and dreaming.

With his eyes partially open, but totally out, little paws going, mouth going, making those inarticulate sounds we make when we are in the middle of a very active dream . . .

And he looked so funny! I promise, I promise, this is the last one for a while:

00dementocat.jpg

Thank God Adventure Man doesn’t have a blog! I don’t want any photos me me, when I am having a bad dream!

Think I should submit it to I Can Has Cheeseburger? I know it is not socially relevant, but I love this site. At least one caption gives me a laugh-out-loud, a great way to start the day.

September 5, 2007 Posted by | Blogging, ExPat Life, Family Issues, Kuwait, Pets, Photos, Relationships | 10 Comments