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Oklahoma Election 2014

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Seven reasons to ban the Lord's Prayer

British cinema chains have banned an advertisement for which features people saying the Lord's Prayer. As Steven Croft, Bishop of Sheffield, goes through the seven petitions of the prayer, he explains why its understandable that the Lord's Prayer would be offensive in the context of a cinema.

"We are created and loved and called into friendship with God who is our father and into community with our fellow human beings who are therefore our sisters and brothers. Only someone who has found this new identity can stand against the advertising culture which night and day seduces us to define who we are by what we spend....

"Third, and most powerfully, the Lord's Prayer teaches us to live with just enough. This is the most dangerous reason why it cannot be shown with the adverts at the cinema. It teaches us not to want more. It teaches contentment, the most subversive virtue of them all....

"There are only 63 words in the Lord's Prayer.  It takes less than a minute to say them.

"Yet these words shape our identity, give purpose to our lives, check our greed, remind us of our imperfections, offer a way of reconciliation, build resilience in our spirits and call us to live to the glory of our creator.

"No wonder they have been banned in the boardrooms of consumer culture."

Bartlesville Playtower | Atlas Obscura

Atlas Obscura's entry on the restored mid-century modern structure, designed by Bruce Goff, that has been restored and reopened in Bartlesville's Sooner Park. I remember climbing to the top of this when I was a kid, and I remember my dad and one of his brothers working their way around the Mobius Strip at the base of the tower. The last time I went up in the tower was 1978 when we were back at the park for my mother's high school reunion. One of the photos on this page shows the Mobius Strip structure and the tower in its prime.

What to Do If You Are Offended or Confused by Flannery O'Connor's Stories? | TGC

"Jesus's parables would offend us, too, if we hadn't heard them so many times--or if we were paying better attention.

"In the Parable of the Prodigal Son, we can all understand why the older brother, the one who has kept his nose clean, is offended by his father's eager welcoming of the wayward brother. It's a little shocking to realize that Jesus presents the older brother as just as big a jerk as the younger brother. Consider how much more shocking it would have been for Jesus's original audience, who hadn't already been told what they were supposed to think about the story.

"The parables are driven by that dissonance between the truth and the way we feel about the truth. Jesus shows us what the kingdom of God looks like; if we allow ourselves to be offended by that vision, we begin to see what needs to happen in our hearts."

This entry includes audio of Flannery O'Conner reading "A Good Man Is Hard to Find" and quotes her comments about the story.

MORE: Flannery O'Conner says that Ayn Rand "makes Mickey Spillane look like Dostoevsky."

Here's How Crazy-Long German Words are Made | Mental Floss

The animation at the link "takes you, step by step, through what's involved in creating Rhababerbarbarabarbarbarenbartbarbierbierbarbärbel, a completely valid (and probably never before uttered) word," which means "Barbie of the bar where the beer of the beard barber for the barbarians of Rhubarb Barbara's bar is sold." A commenter at Language Hat breaks the word down as follows: "Rhabarber-Barbara-Bar-Barbaren-Bart-Barbier-Bier-Bar-Bärbel." Further comments at that link discuss the use of "rhubarb" as a nonsense word for background noise in films, German use of "rhabarber" as we use "blah, blah, blah," and the Quebecois practice of growing rhubarb on compost heaps.

A map of San Francisco's subway system that almost was

As originally conceived in 1956, the system would have served all the counties bordering the bay, reaching from Los Gatos to Santa Rosa and all the way to Fairfield, Brentwood, and Livermore in the outer eastern reaches of the metro area, serving nine counties instead of the three that BART actually serves. Lines would have crossed the bays along each of the bridges. Having dealt with traffic along many of these routes, I can appreciate the convenience of taking a train instead.

The 1956 plan was unearthed was uncovered by Jake Coolidge for his master's thesis at San Jose State University. Here's his presentation putting the original BART plan in its national and local historical context. Although the images are small and hard to read, I'm struck by the similarities in graphic design with the Tulsa comprehensive planning documents from the same period.

Project: U.S. Routes as a Subway Map | Cameron Booth

This beautiful piece of cartography converts the U. S. numbered highway system into a "subway map" that follows the conventions of the London Underground map. Included are all routes from 1 to 101, plus some significant three-digit routes, such as U. S. 183 and U.S. 412. Decommissioned highways (e.g. Route 66, U. S. 99) and decommissioned sections of highways (e.g., U. S. 70 between L. A. and Globe, Arizona, U. S. 6 between Bishop and Long Beach, California) are shown as skinnier lines.

Map designer Cameron Booth (curator of Transit Maps) writes: "However, being an older road system, cobbled together in the mid-1920s from a scraggly collection of road trails, the U.S. highway system sticks to its grid far more loosely, with many routes starting or ending well out of their ordained position. This map has taken me well over a year to complete (between other projects) and I restarted my work on three separate occasions, each time almost convinced that this map was impossible. This last time, I started at the most complex intersection of roads on the map - Memphis, Tennessee - and solved it first. Once that resolved itself, clues were revealed as to how to approach the rest of the map and things got a lot easier."

A Stalker's Best Friend: Inside JSocket's Android Remote Access Tool Builder - Threat Geek

Cybersecurity expert John Bambenek writes about vulnerabilities that can give a hacker an easy way to track your Android phone, and how to reduce your risk.

Novel Rocket: Tips for Writing Speculative Fiction

J. Wesley Bush, author of Knox's Irregulars, and several other writers of science fiction and fantasy talk about the work of creating a fictional world that provides an engaging and immersive environment for a story.

How Capicola Became Gabagool: The Italian New Jersey Accent, Explained | Atlas Obscura

"But this gets weird, because most Italian-Americans can trace their immigrant ancestors back to that time between 1861 and World War I, when the vast majority of "Italians," such as Italy even existed at the time, wouldn't have spoken the same language at all, and hardly any of them would be speaking the northern Italian dialect that would eventually become Standard Italian....

"'I grew up speaking English and Italian dialects from my family's region of Puglia,' says Gardaphe. 'And when I went to Italy, very few people could understand me, even the people in my parents' region. They recognized that I was speaking as if I was a 70-year-old man, when I was only 26 years old.' Italian-American Italian is not at all like Standard Italian; instead it's a construction of the frozen shards left over from languages that don't even really exist in Italy anymore with minimal intervention from modern Italian...."

Voiceless consonants become voiced, final vowels get dropped, "oh" gets raised to "ooh," and that's how capicola becomes gabagool.

Honda Odyssey power sliding door reset

Here's the procedure I used successfully on a 2001 Honda Odyssey EX to reset the doors when the right door just stopped working. What I did was based on this post for a 2007 Odyssey power sliding door -- the only change was that I only had to pull as single fuse, passenger panel #13.

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