Little thought: am I too boring? It seems like I can’t keep a conversation alive with anybody – even my purported best friend – for more than 5 minutes. I invest my love in people, and they don’t even care. What’s wrong with me?

– KF –

It’s People Like You…

It’s no secret that I am a Christ-follower. I believe all the essentials of the faith – that Jesus Christ is the Son of God who came to earth and died for our sins, rising on the third day. I wish I could say correctly that Christians are a united group, all espousing the exact same tenets and presenting the world a cohesive face. Sadly, I cannot make any such claim. Frankly, I can’t count how many different offshoots of Christianity have sprung up in the 2,000 years since Christ lived here. I did a quick web search and came up with a few sites: Episcopal, Baptist, Christian and Missionary Alliance (especially close to my heart), Pentecostal, numerous nondenominational, and of course a page about the Catholic Church. The site that I really found interesting, however, was one that Mom sent me in an email this morning: maintained by the Tabernacle Baptist Church in Lubbock, Texas, it maintains a special page on why Jesus Christ Superstar is blasphemous. The site makes such claims as – to paraphrase – the idea of seeing Jesus’s life through Judas’s eyes is just like seeing Jesus’s life through the “eyes of the devil himself.” They claim Judas was an anti-Christ and possibly the Anti-Christ. They state that Jesus Christ Superstar is “rotten to the core,” that the writers thereof were not Christians and therefore did not properly (respectfully) present the Gospel, and the list goes on.

Here’s the problem I have: they make many ridiculous statements, purport many outrageous and patently crazy ideas – and mix it with a tiny bit of truth. As I read that site, all I could think was “It’s Christians like that who make people distrust Christians like me.” Now, I don’t believe some of the material espoused on their site as a whole, and frankly it frustrates me that this type of material should bias nonbelievers against all Christians. An example: last year I had several talks with a non-Christian friend who, due to unfortuante encounters earlier in life with Catholicism, could not fathom or accept the somehwat more liberal Christianity I have been taught. The previous experience completely closed him off from reconsidering Christianity, even a less conservative Christianity than he had known before. The Jesus Christ Superstar site strikes me in somewhat a similar vein, acting to simply confirm the prejudice of Christians as closed-minded, ultra-conservative, judgmental, and so forth.

I guess what I am really disappointed with is the general stereotyping that people do daily. You can’t get away from it, even at liberal Clark. It’s so common in our society – in the world – that we don’t even think about it. How to get away from stereotyping when we do it so unconsciously that it doesn’t even register in our minds? I don’t know.

As a quick note about life, nothing has happened. I am hoping to see the Matrix Revolutions, as everybody around me has seen it and I’m feeling very behind-the times. Also, it is rotten on Rotten Tomatoes, and IMDb gives it fairly bad reviews too. I’m eager to have the opportunity to make up my own mind. Ian has surmised that it’s most likely my motherboard that has caused all the computer trouble I had, because some typical motherboard-errors happened when he tried to underclock my CPU (If you think you know why underclocking a CPU would cause it to bluescreen and had a CMOS checksum error, feel free to let me know). We’re debating about the value of buying a brand-new motherboard for me, that could be upgraded int he future, or a motherboard identical to the one I have – old, but no trouble of reinstalling Windows. In desperation we have ordered a $3 water pitcher from because apparently nobody back here sells such. Backwards easterners. Finally, both of us have tons of work to do & haven’t gone to Price Chopper in so long we have begun resorting to eating our own socks for nutrients.

– KF –

What to Do With Ridgeway?

“Hiding the bodies was the hardest part, he complained to prosecutors. ‘I had to take them all the way out there, waste of my time and gas,’ he said. It ‘was a big burden. Took the time away from killing.’ ” –Gary Ridgeway, Green River killer. The question this blog addresses is: should this man be put to death for his crimes, or not? I am interested in your comments and thoughts, so please do leave them.

Facts of the case: Since childhood, Gary Rideway has had a fascination with hurting people and as a 15-year-old, out of the blue he stabbed a young boy in the liver. Since then Ridgeway has killed at least 48 women starting the early 1980’s, possibly more beginning in the 1970’s (he can’t specify when or how many); he has killed so many prostitutes, in fact, he cannot remember how many bodies he has hidden or where they are. Indeed, he is quoted in the Seattle Times as saying, “I killed so many women I have a hard time keeping them straight,” and in fact investigators are still not sure they have found all the bodies of his victims. He has “utilized” their skills before killing them, gaining confidence with the women by promising them various things – often higher rates than they asked. Then, after sex, he “methodically strangled them” because shooting or knives was too messy. Sometimes after he murdered and hid the bodies, he would return to copulate with the corpses. He assiduously honed his skills to the point of leaving false evidence for investigators, changing his car tires, clipping victims’ fingernails if they scratched him, and even pouring battery acid on his arm to cover fingernail cuts. Finally, he has felt quite proud of himself for going all this time uncaught: and he anticipated the day he would have the opportunity to tell the world about his exploits.

I have just listed a few of the facts that sprang out at me. I feel quite sure you can easily find more horrifying details if you so desired. The thing is, to obtain all these details, King County detectives bargained with Ridgeway’s life: namely, they allowed him to keep it in return for as much information as they could squeeze out of him. When all this came to light, families of his numerous victims had two responses: “Finally it’s over,” and “I want him to die.” The question is, what is actually the morally correct thing to do with a man as obviously evil as Ridgeway?

I am a woman, and I live in Worcester. I have a healthy respect for strange men, and a fairly high desire for self-preservation, as I would say is natural. No, I am not a prostitute, and I cannot condone prostitution. However, did those women deserve to die as they did just because of their occupation? Certainly not; after all, they desired only to earn a living somehow too. So now does Ridgeway deserve a fate similar to his victims’ despite his plea-bargain with the state? Frankly, I am divided on this issue. I abhor the idea of killing – most people do, and it is that that makes this case so terrible to us. Locking Ridegway away seems almost too nice for him, after all the suffering he has caused these women and their families.

Christians say that killing is morally wrong because a) that is destroying God’s creation, b) we are called to emulate Christ, who loved all people – especially the “worst” types of people, and c) no sin is worse than other sin. We’d all have to die therefore if we wanted to kill murderers. Hard to grasp as this may be, we believe that gossiping or stealing is equal to murdering, even like Ridgeway did. Amazingly, the Bible offers an example somewhat similar to this case: Saul “persecuted” Christians, and by persecuted the Bible doesn’t mean “bothered.” As a pharisee, he sought out and murdered Christians until he personally spoke to Jesus on the road to Tarsus; thereafter, he became Paul and went on to become a pillar of the early church. To this day the notorious Christian-killer is revered by Christians as one of the most Godly men to live as well as human author through which God revealed his Word.

Other people just say that killing is inherently bad, and that is why the death penalty should be banned from everywhere. Proponents of such a viewpoint are obligated to must say that Ridgeway ought to be allowed to live no matter what his crimes. Locking him up should punish him enough, and perhaps one day with reeducation he may turn out to be a decent human being.

All that said, the human side of me – the woman in me who feels the unfairness of those womens’ deaths (side note: here’s an amusing case of feminine solidarity) – demands that he die. He killed almost fifty women! Murdered them in the coldest of blood. I can’t claim to hold with all pacifist tenants, and if anybody ought to die for his crimes, Ridgeway is the man. Some things seem completely unpardonable, unforgiveable, worthy of nothing less than death. Is this one of those things? I do not know, and as of now he will remain imprisoned but alive. What do you think this man deserves?

– KF –

How Do You Like Me Now?!

Free at last! I took my last midterm today, and you know what? It was EASY. I knew all of it, every last thing, even the lame question about Norman windows because Ian and I did one like that a little while ago. YEAH! HOW DO YOU LIKE ME NOW? (If you don’t have the Google popup blocker, I suggest you get it.) I feel so good, I can’t say! I’m ahead of my Architecture reading, I got the delicious chocolate chip cookies Jess zoomed off to me (what an angel!), I saw Lesley for a nice long time today, and I even got to see Ernie a little bit before & after my exam. So much for cards, and I miss playing Rummy 500 with his stringent rules, but at least we got to talk a little bit. Also he saved me from being raped and/or pillaged as well as soaked on the walk from Clark to WPI I would’ve had to make. Thank God for friends who are willing to drive me home occasionally.

This weather reminds me powerfully of home: about 50 degrees and rainy in the most persistent way possible. Lesley got her hair dyed back to one even color – before she was Two-Tone Lesley, with dark normal hair above light bleached hair – and after a rigorous (for me, boring) 2 hours at StudiOne we emerged to find pouring rain. It soaked us entirely in the brief dash back to Clark; by the time I got into Sackler and found Ernie buried in a stack of lab reports to grade, my hair dripped and water had soaked through the cardboard box Jess sent me. During the exam I also realized that my shoes just take longer to soak through, so my toes feel a little soggy right now, but that can’t dampen my spirit. Today has gone ridiculously well, culminating in my feeling very good about this math exam. Hopefully I aced it; to achieve a moderate grade I have to get A’s on all the rest of our exams (crosses fingers).

Now all I have to do is figure out my classes for next semester, convince my pushy Advisor that they will further my desires, and my week will end. If I’m really, really lucky Prof. Robertson will return our papers tomorrow and I will have a big fat A on that, too.

As a final thought: Toby Keith’s “Courtesy of the Red White & Blue” is patriotic to the point of sounding rather ridiculous. Where would we get our laughs if country didn’t exist?

– KF –

Middle of It All

Who really wants to read the details of life?


You can’t ask a vague question and expect a detailed answer.

Yazoo streams are tiny streamlets that parallel rivers with natural levees.

Lack of communication will kill even the best relationship. Secrets are worse.

Smoking kills people, and we all know it, yet today I saw a 6th grader doing it.

You’ve spent too much time on AIM if you say “Lol” out loud instead of laughing.

Procrastination may be an art, but passing your casses is a necessity.

If you haven’t met the mathmagician, why not?

I found an ant crawling on my forehead today, and that made me want to shower.

Finally, as Jess aptly just asked of me, “With all these naps, who has time to write a paper?” We must have our priorities, after all.

Things I can hardly wait for:

Thursday: test stresses shall vanish for a time.

Thanksgiving, when I get to see Jess again after approximately forever.

Christmas, when I get to see my family again – both families. Yay!

New Year’s Eve, and the Maximus Testosterous murder mystery.

– KF –

Unfortunately, life is awful. These two exams weigh heavily on my mind; I struggle spending so much time without contact with many other people; the Architecture reading goes slowly; the mice make noises in the ceiling; despite our best efforts mildew stubbornly grows on our shower curtain; nobody will edit my story for the Atlantic Monthly; no matter what I do my friends (when I see them) find me excruciatingly boring. On the brighter side, today was positively gorgeous weather-wise. I wore a sweatshirt and felt far too hot. Also I pried some help from Prof Woodcock, my geology prof, quite an accomplishment if I do say so. A fly kept buzzing around in her office even after she opened a window. Ian and I ate ourselves down to literally nothing left (until we went to the store I’d eaten a bowl of yogurt all day).

I’ve started feeling those “don’t eat” urges again, probably as a result of having so much of life out of my control. I know that I have plenty of choices, but the things that matter most – relationships, really – continue deteriorating to the point where I feel almost like a lonely freshman again. I have also considered starting to run again to slim down – ha! Everybody says I’m finally normal, and all I want to do is lose 10 or 15 lbs. I find myself counting how much I eat a day and thinking “That’s good, I had only toast for breakfast and will eat a quarter of a bowl of soup for dinner… doing good…” Because I have spent so much time talking to people about anorexia, and that mindset, I realize that I shouldn’t think this way. But at the same time, it’s very seductive: something I can control absolutely, something that I can be accountable for. Food sounds worse and worse; after eating at Applebee’s I wanted to cry because I “caved.” I’m so tired of being unhappy and lonely. I know it’s illogical, but it really feels like if I somehow manage to get back below 100 lbs I will actually be a happier, better person. My physical fitness is at an all-time low and my weight an all-time high: terrible combination for a perfectionist like me. Something has to change, and I will have to do that changing to myself because nothing I do will make people desire to care for me or spend time in my company. Somebody said that you can’t change others, only yourself. That’s what I am slowly doing, and the worst part is my head says it’s bad, bad, bad, and don’t go down that road again! but my gut is saying Yes, do it, you’ll be so much happier; think how good you feel when you haven’t eaten and aren’t hungry! So far I’ve managed to continue eating normally, or mostly normally, but the guilt gnaws at me relentlessly because I do. Eat… Food… Weight… I want to stop thinking about them all forever.

Something is terribly wrong in my life, and I don’t know what it is or how to fix it. Dear God, help me.

– KF –

My Amazing Marvellous Story of the Weekend I Spent In A Coconut Nutshell – An Incredible Work of Staggering Genius!

After a title like that, how can my actual post measure up?!

This weekend has turned out rather depressing. As Toby’s away message said at one point: if this weekend was food, it’d be plain oatmeal with lots of milk. The general idea of two exams next week, with the addition of trying to keep up in reading my Architecture books – possibly the densest texts ever (probably 3x as many words/page as any other textbook I’ve encountered), and the stress of the Atlantic Monthly story coming due in only one month, with no editors returning it to me… You’d hope that 3 months’ advance time would be enough, but apparently it isn’t. In any case, this weekend has been one of work and the occasional good moment. One good moment was realizing that has a 30% off sale, and that may affect my dream camera, so if you want to buy it for me now’s the time 🙂

Another of the good moments was going to the Interstate 8 concert with Luke and Ian. They invited 5 other groups: SHM, Fools on the Hill, Rusty Pipes, BU’s coed group, and CDN. Frankly, although it was Interstate 8’s concert, I like the Rusty Pipes and CDN the best, and thought SHM did very well too. Tyler’s Weird Al song, “One More Minute“, especially. As a special starter, Eric and a group of comedian peoples started by tap dancing to “Singing in the Rain.” Eric even got shot at the end of the number, curling up and looking rather more like a dead insect than a dead person. Excellent break between studying.

I was thinking how odd it is, blogging. People read the blog (presumably; I kind of wonder how many really do), and get an idea of what’s happening in our lives, but we still have no idea what’s going on in their lives. It doesn’t really occur to people that that mode of communication is so exceedingly one-sided that we get rather left out of the loop aside from the occasional one-sentence comment (which, frankly, throw us into palpitations of ecstasy). It’s so odd! I’ll mention an event that I blogged to a family member, and they will more often than not reply, “Oh yes, I read that on your blog.” I think anybody who reads a blog should be required to keep a blog, so as to even the playing field. Then again, that would probably also lower our readership by 50 or 60%. Gotta keep thinking on that one.

As a final happy thought, if you are quiet in the kitchen you can hear the pattering of tiny mice feet around on the dropped ceiling. Yes, we have mice above our heads at all times, probably trying to get into our food as we speak. This disturbs us.

– KF –