Tuesday, December 31, 2013
It was a fluke that I was able to watch the fireworks from Sydney as the Aussies rang in 2014. You see...
I woke up at 4:15AM after sleeping on the couch for no apparent reason. I woke up The Calvinator to give him his pill and walk him and decided to head the gym. Well, I got there and they were closed. I remembered they were closing early today but didn't realize they were opening late. So, I went home and streamed the fireworks from Sydney. 7:00AM is 12:00AM there.
I saw an interview about the cost of the display. $6M (AUS) was spent and for the first time in 10 years the iconic Sydney Opera House was aglow with pyrotechnics. 2014 marks the 40th anniversary of the Opera House which was controversial when it was built.
My love affair with Sydney continues. It was rather fitting that my the beginning of the last day of 2013 was started with fireworks from The Land Down Under.
Monday, December 30, 2013
So what made the Top 10 List?
2. Boston marathon attacks
3. Mandela dies
4. Edward Snowden leaks NSA
5. Federal government shutdown
6. Obamacare rollout debacle
7. Philippines typhoon
8. Syria civil war
9. Cleveland kidnappings
10.SCOTUS on same-sex marriage
What were your top stories of the year?
Saturday, December 28, 2013
|source: Getty Images|
Wednesday, December 25, 2013
"There are both bright and dark moments, lights and shadows," Francis said in his homily. "If our heart is closed, if we are dominated by pride, deceit, self-seeking, then darkness falls within us and around us."
To read more of the Pope's address, visit CNN and NPR.
Tuesday, December 24, 2013
Saturday, December 21, 2013
|source: Late Show with David Letterman|
Friday, December 20, 2013
Thursday, December 19, 2013
Students at Kilgore High School pulled a stunt on their classmates, faculty and staff and filmed the prank. I myself would have been a bit skeptical about the odd looking tree. Just sayin'. Also, I don't know which is scarier, the tree or the some of the sweaters?
or this of Geraldo Rivera in Galveston waiting for Hurricane Ike:
|photo: Maddie Meyer/Getty Images|
Wednesday, December 18, 2013
In Texas we have a saying (about littering), "Don't Mess With Texas!" I think an adaption for The Vatican should be "Don't Mess With Francis!"
Tuesday, December 17, 2013
Saturday, December 14, 2013
|photo credit: Nicole Connolly|
UPDATE (12/15/13): Violentz has done a great job of documenting the Santa Speedo Runs. Here are photos from last year.
Thursday, December 12, 2013
For those of you who don't know why he was selected, Time's managing editor Nancy Gibbs called the Pope "a new voice of conscience."
"In his nine months in office, he has placed himself at the very center of the central conversations of our time, about wealth and poverty, fairness and justice, transparency, modernity, globalization, the role of women, the nature of marriage, the temptations of power," she said. "When he kisses the face of a disfigured man or washes the feet of a Muslim woman, the image resonates far beyond the boundaries of the Catholic Church."
The Pope's response to the honor?
"The Holy Father is not looking to become famous or to receive honors. But if the choice of Person of Year helps spread the message of the gospel-- a message of God's love for everyone-- he will certainly be happy about that." -Vatican spokesman Father Federico Lombardi
For the full story, click here.
And in related news, I actually met Edie Windsor who came in 3rd for Person of the Year. We met in Baltimore in 2012.
Tuesday, December 3, 2013
Today is #GivingTuesday. It's a day that was started last year to follow Black Friday, Small Business Saturday, and Cyber Monday.
It's also at this time of year that many nonprofits do an ask. They ask their supporters to make a year end contribution. ..just in case they need another tax write off.
Put those two things together and you have #GivingTuesday. It's a reminder to do some good during all of the hustle and bustle of thev holiday season.
Giving doesn't always have to be done in monetary form. Giving of your time and volunteering makes a difference.
I work at Legacy Community Health Services. We are very fortunate to have peowho support what we do through monetary donations and by volunteering. We can't do what we do without our supporters. A big THANK YOU goes out to those people.
So. .. before the day ends make a contribution to a cause you support or start thinking about how you can volunteer your time...but today and don't wait until it's New Year Resolution time.
Sunday, December 1, 2013
|Legacy Community Health Services-Montrose World AIDS Day 2013|
When people were first infected with HIV in the early '80s, Montrose Clinic (now Legacy Community Health Services) went from being an STD clinic for gay men to one of the first responders to the pandemic in Houston. Legacy went from teaching people how to die from HIV/AIDS to teaching people how to live with HIV/AIDS. Treatments have changed over the years and people are living longer. The face of HIV/AIDS has changed. It went from being a gay man's disease to a disease that affects everyone but one thing hasn't changed: the stigma attached to being HIV+
I was getting ready to head over to a holiday party and visit with friends but before I headed out for the day, I did want to take a moment and acknowledge this day. You might say that the above photo says it all but it is too easy to get caught up in the hustle and bustle of the holiday weekend and forget about today.
The photo above was taken last night after I arrived back in town. Katy Caldwell, (Executive Director at Legacy) Gary Archer (from Bright Star Productions) and I had been trying to think of a way to illuminate Legacy's Montrose location for World AIDS Day. Katy suggested a red ribbon. I suggested a string of red ribbons on the white tile. And well then, we left it up to Gary.
I thought it should be multiple ribbons all the way across, some larger, some smaller, different shades of reds, bold, shadows, etc. I visualized this as each of us standing side by side honoring those friends &family who have been affected by HIV/AIDS. That’s my take on this…my concept. On a personal level, I see many friends up there and therefore, I see myself.
So folks there is the story behind the building being lit. And there is also an obscure part of the story that not many people know about.
Back in 1997, I became involved in a committee to raise awareness for World AIDS Day and Illumination Project. Jane Weiner was in charge of the project and I had never met her. I was warned not to drink her Kool-Aid but I did. In one of the meetings, Jane wanted to know why a building or buildings in Houston weren't decorated with the red ribbon. Well, six years later we have one building lit; maybe more will follow.
I hope that you will take a minute to remember everyone who has died from HIV/AIDS, everyone living with HIV/AIDS and everyone who is helping fight the battle. You don't have to light up a building but you can light up your heart.
For more photos, visit Legacy's Facebook page.
To read CultureMap's story, click here.