Society: I'm still seeing "It Gets Better" videos offering encouragement to depressed gay teens in reaction to the recent college student suicide. I have two thoughts on this: 1) Is it really accurate to think that this suicide occurred because of homophobia or a particular antipathy towards homosexuality? I'm sure there are plenty of straightlaced heterosexual kids that would commit suicide out of the sheer embarassment of having their sexual activity exposed to the entire Internet. 2) Would these videos still be called "It Gets Better" if they included statistics on venereal diseases among gay males?
Education: Why don't colleges just go ahead and make an "Athletics Major." A lot of colleges are already offering classes like kinesiology and management, as well as courses on baseball and football through their American studies and literature departments. I know plenty of students who have gotten reasonable employment within college athletics due to their participation in sports. Even if they aren't getting drafted into the pros, they are just as likely to end up as coaches, assistant coaches, or some type of manager as they are to get jobs related to their actual majors. Heck, you are probably more likely to get some kind of employment because you played lacrosse than you are because you studied Shakespeare. And most athletes I know are working harder and practicing more than any dance student, theater major, or any other performance art that has an actual academic department. In many ways, athletics requires more brainpower than most performance art fields. Consider that your typical athlete has to make critical decisions on the fly, because sports are a dynamic form of entertainment. Sure you can drill and memorize plays, but you also have to be able to improvise -- if only to strategize which play to implement. Dancers and singers, as far as I know, don't often find themselves rearranging whole muscial sets mid-song. I have a hard time imagining ballerinas in the middle of The Nutcracker deciding to switch things up during the intermission and suddenly busting out with...uhm...some other ballet...You know, I think The Nutcracker is pretty much the extent of my knowledge regarding dance. There goes my ethos for that argument.
Economics: I recently saw one of those fake motivational posters on the Internet featuring an image of the loaves and fishes with the tagline: "Piracy: Jesus did it." Obviously, the implication is that there is no difference between Jesus miraculously generating bread and fish out of an original source and peer-to-peer file sharing. I think the main difference here is that the Romans had no law on the books against multiplying fishes, so -- while a funny gag -- it is perhaps not the most logically fair comparison. Besides, even if there was a law, Jesus was God, and therefore the Author of all creation. For Jesus to "copy" and distribute fish would be like Blizzard deciding to e-mail everyone a free copy of WoW.
Faith: Isabel and I were in downtown Philly this last weekend, so we ended up going to Mass at St. John the Evangelist. The Franciscans there kept me a little nervous with repeated references to modern day social justice issues, but I have to admit that the priest who said our Mass was one of the most energetic and joyful presiders I've ever seen. Sang his way through pretty much the whole thing, God bless him. It's also a pretty awesome building, if you get a chance to see it.
Culture: Do I buy The Force Unleashed II as a reward for finishing my job applications? The trailers look pretty awesome...but so did the trailers for every prequel movie...I've been burnt before.