Saturday, May 19, 2012

Friends with Benefits or Cuddles with Consequences

The movie "Friends with Benefits" was free on a subscription channel and being a semi-fan of Justin Timberlake we gave it a view.  It was a better story than anticipated and more of a cautionary tale than expected.

As the title suggests this is a story of two people who become friends, who openly admit their non-romantic attraction to each other and therefore believe they can meet each other's physical needs with honesty, forthrightness and no complications.  Attributes that they believe can not be accomplished when dealing with more 'romantic' involvements.  As the story opened with each of them ending a romantic relationship very badly this would appear to be a sound and logical idea.

The ideology of meeting our physical needs without emotional entanglements is an idea many would like to embrace, at multiple levels.  Alas, we cannot participate in; groups, societies, communities or gathering of individuals without engaging in emotional interactions.  Getting our food in a restaurant requires interaction generally with patience, politeness and manners on the part of all parties involved.  Even when we try to stay anonymous, such as sitting in an airplane shoulder to shoulder with strangers.  We signal our intentions with body language; earphones, eye masks, books, closing our eyes, pretending we are sleeping.  Yet, this situation too, requires emotional involvement with others.

Believing we can interact with another human being, especially intimately, and leave all emotional entanglements behind is wishful and naive.  "Friends with Benefits" proves that point in the end when they both try to date others and jealousy ensues, hurt feelings are put on display and the age old problems associated with relationships emerge.

A better approach is to be honest and forthright in all relationships.  Speak truthfully, respectfully and in love.  Treat others as you would like to be treated.  Respect a would-be romantic partner as you would want them to respect you.  Respect yourself and adhere to a personal moral code.  The relationships you start on these foundations will be genuine, satisfying and lasting.

pictures from:

Thursday, May 10, 2012


Our college aged son educated me on the latest twitter trend.  When you complain about something that is a result due to the affluence of a citizen in a first world nation the tweet has the hash tag #firstworldproblem

It is a tongue in cheek reflection on how minor our problems are next to those wondering where to get their next meal.  How easily we fall into our first world woes yet, . . . we have been warned.

Matthew 13:22 The seed falling among the thorns refers to someone who hears the word, but the worries of this life and the deceitfulness of wealth choke the word, making it unfruitful. (NIV)

The parable of the sower and the seed warns those burdened by affluence.  Do you question your affluence? 

If you woke up this morning with more health than illness, you are more fortunate than the one million people who will not survive this week.

If you have food in the refrigerator, clothes on your back, a roof overhead and a place to sleep, you are richer than 75% of the world.

If you can attend a church or political meeting without fear of harassment, arrest, torture, or death, then you are more blessed than three billion in the world.

If you have money in the bank, in your wallet, and spare change in your pocket, then you are among the top 8% of the world's wealthy.

Does your #firstworldproblem cause you worry?  Does your #firstworldproblem choke the Word within you?  Does your #firstworldproblem make you unfruitful? 

This is my prayer.  What is yours?

Psalm 139:23-25
Search me, God, and know my heart;
test me and know my anxious thoughts.
See if there is any offensive way in me, and lead me in the way everlasting. (NIV)


Friday, May 4, 2012

Moving Right Along . . .

The story goes like this...

In the interim between ordering my walking foot and it's arrival I went digging in my stash of remnants.  With quilts on my mind there was discovered a wonderful piece that was quickly transformed into a child's blanket.

Later in the month, in a weekly Skype conversation with my mother J., the summer family reunion came up.

 J., "Are we going to put anything in the auction?"
Me, "I haven't even thought about it, am I supposed to be."
J.,"We didn't put anything in last time."
This was my moment to see where the conversation was leading but blindly I replied,
"What were you thinking of?"
J., "You could make a quilt."

Okay, she has good reason to say this; quilt 1, quilt 2, quilt 3, quilt 4, three since L. went to college last August.  I'm sure my crowing about the quick turnaround on the cute child's blanket was her prompt.

The family reunion is the last week of June, plenty of time, but my scrap bin is depleted and I am in the middle of quilt 5.  There was hardly time to consider what to do.  That very night, in walks D. from teaching and tosses a bag at me.

"R. sent these to you."  R. is my quilting buddy and D.'s receptionist.  She has unknowingly solved my problem.  The bag was full of great remnants from a variety of Minkies. 

This is what I did:
I pieced together three child sized blankets using various designs and sewing methods.  It was great practice and although the finished products are not "perfect" they are perfect for the family reunion auction.

R. has given me another bag of super remnants.  My efforts must return to #5, the Quilt-As-You-Go that needs finishing before I dig in and see what wonders will come out of this second bag.
What wonders have you completed recently?