Entries Posted in "February 2004"

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Martha: One Step Closer To Exoneration
February 27, 2004

Securities Fraud Charges Against Martha Dropped. Well, well, well, what have we here. Yours truly predicted it. One of Martha's biggest charges, securities fraud was dropped. I still stand on my prediction that Martha will serve absolutely no time in prison for this; not even a cushy celebrity prison. The decision to drop one of the charges puts Martha one step closer to where I predict she'll soon be. Back at home in Connecticut, doing more shows on how to put wall paper in the drawers of your sewing machine desk. This country is a trip.

Posted by Ambra in Culture | Link to This Entry
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Angry Black Women Heat Up TV

The Washington Post published an article recently around the portrayal of African American women as "angry" on reality television. It seems television producers are having a field-day clipping, editing, and stringing together unbecoming moments of some of reality tv's African American women to portray shall we say, a hard-hitting, ruthless, and stereotypical example of what I like to call "The Angry Black Woman". One in particular catching a lot of flack is woman named Omarosa from NBC's the Apprentice. I have a confession. Although I talk much "smack" regarding reality television (translation of the vernacular "talk smack": to speak ill of; to speak against; to say negative things concerning), I do watch the Apprentice. Yes, it's true. I too was sucked in like Al Roker's tummy. I watch it every week like a bad habit and trust me, I feel very bad about myself. I repent (to myself) even as I watch. It's really the business aspect that interests me. I could do without the drama and without Donald Trump's hairpiece and self-inflated reality (the man puts water bottles with his picture on it in his hotel rooms....Gag me with a spoon. Come down from the mountaintops Mr. Trump).

I lay much of the blame on these women themselves. They chose to subject themselves to the hands of TV producers who are only after ratings. What did they expect? In the article, Omarosa, who I think has made many poor judgment calls in her behavior, plus she formerly worked for Al Gore's campaign, which I WILL hold against her, emphasizes the point of clever editing seeking high ratings,

'Most of the women who complain about her on the show, she says, are now her very good friends. "This show is about ratings," and The Donald pitted her against the other women, she says, because he was "just being dramatic."'

Aside from what's already been stated about her poor choice of words, I don't have a problem with Omarosa. I think her attitude stinks sometimes, but I also think she's misunderstood.

Again, I place blame on the women because they in fact did do the things portrayed on television, however disjointed they may have been and they should be accountable for their words and actions. I am also aware of the ever-perpetuated stereotype on both television and film of this "angry black woman" who is ready to explode and "tell someone off" at any minute. This image is made worse by actresses who are willing to "play the role" like Whoppi Goldberg and Queen Latifah. It can get to be as bad as a modern-day minstrel show. I suppose part of my empathy for Omarosa can be attributed to the fact that I myself am often misunderstood. Heck, even my blog is misunderstood. I write in my blog similarly to how I think; only much more toned down. (If one could only imagine). I'm extremely direct in speech. I don't usually mince words but I don't lack compassion (most of the time). Compassion took a lot of growth on my part. Unfortunately, I often say the first thing that comes to my head, which is usually cold or insensitive, although sometimes true. I realize this is part of who God's created me to be but it is not always a good thing. It needs to be developed and balanced. Being a former actress and teacher, I also have a stage voice. This usually means that with or without a microphone, I can get my message across. I grew up in an educational household where we were taught to think for ourselves and engaged in political dialogue at the dinner table. Heated conversations. So it is nothing for me to engage in a head-on, fact-based debate (if the other party is willing). I have learned not to cast my pearls before the swines. I am not one of those people who go around looking for debates. In fact, I generally dislike them; especially debates about the Bible. I'm not an Apologetics person. My general attitude is "when Jesus returns, we'll see who was right you little Heathen." Okay, that's a horrible attitude to have, but I often think it.

[Caveat]: most of those people (looking for debates) reside on the internet by the way and can usually be found in chatrooms, message boards, and often posting unnecessary comments on other peoples' blogs. Beware them. [/Caveat]

Combine all that with the fact that I was raised in what I'd call "the African American tradition" and you have a potentially scary person. Liken it to the "Greek Family Tradition". We can be loud; we often eat a lot, have big family get-togethers, speak our minds, and give lots of verbal feedback. Per the feedback issue, even to this day, I shudder sometimes when I think on how I used to go to the Ballet or some other "high-society" function with my mother and she'd yell out at an unsuspecting dancer, "Alright now, you better dance!". I'd shrink in my seat and think, "God please just let me a white kid, they don't usually have to deal with this".

Now these are all GROSS generalizations of course. I'm not trying to establish new sociological theory here. In my short years on the earth my personality has rubbed people the wrong way. This is inevitable for us all. I myself have felt lumped into the "angry black woman" category for being able to hold an educated and balanced discussion. My quick-wit can often be misconstrued as "anger". It takes a lot to get me angry. I do not doubt that perhaps those who like to make these generalizations have encountered some angry black women in their life. I have too. They do exist. And I agree, they're scary and sometimes downright belligerent. I've encountered angry white women too, a couple of angry white men and a lot of crazy West Indians. (It's a Seattle thing I'm certain). It is unfortunate however, that we categorize people based on our one (or many) negative experiences. The media plays into this and often even believes the myth they themselves have helped further.

There are many cultural nuances that need to be understood if we are heading anywhere towards becoming a true multi-cultural society. These nuances exist in the workplace, in ministry, and in relationships. Not all of these nuances are great. Some need to pass away. But many have something unique to bring to the table. That said I really am a nice girl. One of the nicest you will ever meet actually. Just don't cross me or else I'll cut you with my pocketknife.

Posted by Ambra in Culture, Race | Link to This Entry
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Passion Reviews Roll In

The overwhelming thing I've heard from my friends about the movie is "it's too gory" almost to the point of being traumatizing. I have also heard that the depiction of the crucifixtion isn't one that brings people to repentence. It's just really graphic. The frustrating thing about having not seen the movie, nor being extremely motivated to do so is that I can only form an opinion in theory. So we'll see. I may see it this weekend who knows. I'm straddling the line here. Funny, one review I read said, "The book was better". Duh.

Posted by Ambra in Theocracy | Link to This Entry
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Apparently Same-Sex Penguins are Getting Married too
February 25, 2004

Expect a post later on today. It's a busy day for me. I did get a chance to catch this story on same-sex penguins mating with each other. I can't think of a better argument regarding homosexuality than to compare the behavior with that of animals. Which we are not by the way. Contrary to what Darwinists may say. Ouch. I expect hate mail for that one.

Posted by Ambra in Culture | Link to This Entry
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Bush Lays the Smackdown
February 24, 2004

I watched this morning as President Bush addressed Gay-marriage in a White House press conference calling for a Constitutional Amendment protecting and defining marriage. I'll reserve my comments for later. However I will say that I particularly liked this statement:

"After more than two centuries of American jurisprudence, and millennia of human experience, a few judges and local authorities are presuming to change the most fundamental institution of civilization. Their actions have created confusion on an issue that requires clarity."
Also, in a suprising twist on the Today Show this morning, Richard Roeper of "Ebert & Roeper" (who by the way, have completely lost their credibility in movie reviews after they gave Mona Lisa Smile two thumbs up. Actually, credibility was lost way before then) gave the movie the Passion high marks . He actually made some interesting points concerning the movie. Wish I had a transcript to quote. I don't. Forgive me, I am grumpy today.

Posted by Ambra in Politics | Link to This Entry
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"Gonorrhea and the City"
February 23, 2004

Slutty ho #1, 2, and 3, enjoy a moment with equally ho-ish Carrie Bradshaw on the New York streetsThe media has been talking about it for weeks. Last night tissue sales went up nationwide as the beloved HBO drama Sex and the City bid its final farewell. Admittedly, I have only seen the show one or two times and never in its entirety, and never by choice; one, because I don't have HBO (by choice); two, because it had a tendency to be raunchy and grotesque. I've never quite understood the phenomenon except that as of lately many have been remarking about how "realistic" the friendship between the four women was portrayed. I guess the thing that never sat right with me about Sex and the City was the schizophrenic monogamy of their relationships. This whole concept of gallivanting around the city and having casual sex in half-meaningless relationships then later dishing to your closest friends as if it were some medal of honor is one I don't understand. I think we used to call that a slut.

I find it interesting that this show has struck such a chord with the female community. Perhaps a pulse on the culture, the popularity of the show does bring up some interesting issues regarding women and fulfillment in relationships, meaningless or not. Interesting issues or not, I have trouble with a show that celebrates masturbation as some sort of sexual liberty, good riddance. Now America can find something even less productive to do with their Sunday nights.

Posted by Ambra in Culture | Link to This Entry
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The Real Tragedy of Gay Marriage
February 22, 2004

So I caught a bit of the Screen Actors Guild Awards tonight. I wasn't paying attention much, but I caught a statement made by the president of "the Guild" that struck me, "We have the ability to foster tolerance through new insights and the deep understanding of eachother." Eww, how I hate that word tolerance. Tolerance goes on my list of "Top 10 Loads of Crap Taught in Education". There has long been a prevailing Liberalism in Hollywood. I didn't really watch much of the awards, but I could only guess that the remainder of the show would find award acceptance speeches laced with some mis-guided political opinion on current events. One perhaps, being the legalization of same-sex marriages. As Mercy Me said, "I can only imagine"......

I don't live in the Bible Belt. I live in Seattle, Washington. Home of the tree hugging, Curt Kobain/Jimi Hendrix listening, granola-eating, fake-protesting, ultra-liberal. Surprising? Probably not. I will say that God is doing a new thing here and the title of "un-churched" region will soon be passing away so take my comments in the spirit they're intended. Seattle wishes it was one Will & Grace show away from being San Francisco. Thanks be to God it is not and never will be. Not even close. I say all this to say, the stance many Christians here take on the issue of same-sex marriages is not exactly as well received as it would be in say, Georgia, where you can yell out "God is a good" in a grocery store and a least one or two people would respond unequivocally, "All the time!". That said, the debate over states' rights is not what captivates my emotions. I decided against law school for that very purpose (lacking captivated emotions that is). I do however, believe the City of San Francisco completely usurping authority is completely unacceptable and bastardly at best.

All legal battles aside, I find the saddest reality at work here is the perceived sense of freedom being preached alongside of same-sex marriages. I watched on television as newly"wed" "couples" celebrated, hugged, rejoiced with their family members and adopted children, held up celebratory signs, and shared with the media the "liberty and freedom" they felt. If only people knew how far from free they really were. It is my opinion that the lowest form of human existence is to live our lives the way God never intended. To see people celebrating the relativistic un-truth of freedom in a relationship God never intended us to have is absolutely heartbreaking. This is true separation from God. This is the big lie. A lie not only told via the homosexual agenda, but through the humanist agenda, the feminist agenda, and many others. The lie perpetuated is this "false freedom" people believe they have when they can do whatever they want to do, say what they want to say, live how they want to live, doing whatever comes naturally, completely unencumbered by any laws (but in fact, set free by those laws), and certainly not hindered by any religion, let alone a God whose only goal is to make our lives miserable on the Earth right? It is this thought exactly that is holding many captive in bondage as we speak.

This is not an attack on a law, it's an attack on a covenant. God's covenant. God's foundational covenant. The laws may be the means right now, but it is certainly bigger than that. Any Christian with any sort of prophetic insight could see this coming a mile away. Forget prophetic insight. How about common sense? It's been a slow and steady progression, but even television doesn't look the way it did 10 years ago. So a statement like, ""We have the ability to foster tolerance through new insights...." addressed to a crowd of the most influential actors in Hollywood shouldn't be taken lightly. Television and film can account for much of the softening of many of our hearts towards the issues God himself speaks strong words. I've even found myself questioning many issues. I've thought perhaps it is okay for men and men to join in marriage. I myself admit, my shock factor is pretty high these days. Nothing suprises me. Even worse, not much disgusts me anymore. How I long to get back to the day when my stomach churns at the very thought of much of what the world has stamped its approval. That churning is for a reason. I don't believe it's for us to sit back in a seat of judgement, but as 1 Peter says, to use our gifts to administer God's grace to others accordingly. In politics, in relationships, in whatever our sphere of influence may be. Preach the truth in love that others may find True Freedom, which can only be found in Christ.

Posted by Ambra in Culture, Politics | Link to This Entry
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Gas Stations Go High Tech

So yesterday my errands brought me to the Upper Eastside of Seattle. Actually, it's just the Eastside, but I like saying "Upper" because it's sounds more hoity. The Eastside of Seattle is commonly known as Bellevue or what I like to call "Snootyland". Bellevue is one of the more premier neighborhoods you'll find here. I actually like it, I just pretend I don't for the sake of good blogging.

Prior to getting on the freeway, I figured I'd "fill up" at the local 76 station no matter how disgusted I was at the ghastly gas prices. Not long after I started pumping gas, the screen more commonly known for displaying payment instructions turned into a television and all of a sudden I was watching Larry King Live. Yes. Watching it. Live. At a gas station. Am I the first to catch onto this trend or what? But I was completely blown away. I certainly know they don't show CNN at the gas stations 'round my part of town. I could not contain my excitement. I felt like running over to the woman pumping gas across from me and sharing my revelation. She seemed not to enthused that we could watch tv and pump gas simultaneously. Plus, that wouldn't been uncivilized right? I certainly didn't want to act that way in Snootyland of all places. At first I thought it was great, I mean, I love watching Larry King, then I realized what a brilliant idea it was. My $5.00 fill up turned into $7.00, $8, $9, $13 (okay, okay so I have a fuel-efficent car). I would've filled the whole tank if Larry had a good guest on. Unfortunately, it was the former president of Enron, who I had no interest in hearing anything from. Am I left out here? Does everyone have televisions at their gas stations? I thought I lived in a relatively nice neighborhood. Apparently, I'm not snooty enough.

Posted by Ambra in Culture | Link to This Entry
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MTV Reaches a New Low
February 21, 2004

Almost literally. Lowering Dodge Neons, adding chrome rims and crushed velvet seats to your '84 Gremlin, MTV's newest show Pimp My Ride encourages everyday citizens to fall further into the abyss of materialistic un-reality. Sad.

Posted by Ambra in Culture | Link to This Entry
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The Metermaid Saga Continues
February 20, 2004

Last month I began what looks to be a battle of epic proportions. The battle against the metermaids. I mentioned last month how I had been wrongly ticketed for parking in an "unmarked crosswalk". That's right. A crosswalk that was unmarked. A crosswalk with NO MARKINGS. Nadda. A crosswalk so ambiguous, pedestrians don't even know it's there. It doesn't get more irritating than that. Well, actually, it does. In 2001, I got a ticket for wrongly parking in a spot I was never in, by a phantom metermaid who SENT me the ticket in the mail. When I showed up in court to contest it, the judge dismissed it because the guy that wrote it had a reputation for writing illegitamate parking tickets. To which the judge noted, "That guy would even write his own MOTHER a ticket." That's another story. In any case, I contested my crosswalk ticket most happily.

So I received a letter a few weeks ago informing me I had been assigned a "pre-trial hearing" date to determine if I have enough of a case to have a real trial. If we are unable to "settle" then we'll go to trial. A pre-trial hearing for a $38 parking ticket people!!! What a stinking waste of my time. These people are playing games right now, but they have no idea I'm about to go Perry Mason on their butts. Two can play this game. The City of Seattle has encountered one of its hard-headed citizens again. I take my finances very seriously and the City of Seattle won't be getting $38 from me because one of their employees in the Police Department was having a bad day and feeling a bit indignant. They made sure to note on the letter, "If you wish to pay the ticket at this time you may do so by checking here and enclosing payment for the full amount." Translated: We're sending you to a pre-trial hearing because we're stalling. We're hoping that you'll get ticked off and just pay us (which is what we really wanted in the first place) so we can pay the salaries of some ineffective city council members and continue to waste dollars doing absolutely nothing.

Indeed not. I will be attending my "pre-trial" hearing with evidence in tow. This metermaid regime is goin' down baby.

Posted by Ambra in Life | Link to This Entry
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Why I'm Not a Republican Parts I, II, III, IV
Reflections on the Ill-Read Society
The ROI of a Kid
The Double-Minded Haters
Hip-Hop in Education: Do You Wanna Revolution?
Oh parent Where Art Thou?
Requisite Monthly Rant: the State of the Nation
College Curriculum Gone Wild
Walmart Chronicles
An Open Letter to American Idol
Gonorrhea and the City

I Have a Talk Show