Captain Fantastic warning

by Andrea Elizabeth

for brief explicit male nudity and the f word

Captain Fantastic

by Andrea Elizabeth

Captain Fantastic is a well thought out, honest movie about homeschooling. The creators said it was about parenting, and I guess that doesn’t have to necessarily mean just homeschoolers, but I’d say an extremely invested parent. It’s unclear how invested the mother was since she was away being treated for a mental illness. The dad, played by Vigo Mortensen, is an atheist, marxist, survivalist, navy seal type dad who lives with his 6 kids deep in the woods off the grid. While I was impressed with him at the beginning of the movie, he seemed to be showing off much of the time. His character arch is realistic though as he gets confronted for his failings and learns some humility. His first contact with his sister’s family allows him to maintain his superiority. It’s his exceedingly wealthy father in law who puts him in his place. This is the problem I have with Marxists. They are so fanatically fixated upon wealth. The Unbreakable Kimmy Schmidt also has to have an exceedingly wealthy foil to both criticize and rely on. Marxists want to be able to live their impractical dreams as prodégés of exceedingly wealthy people whom they wish to be sponsored by out of a sense of moral inferiority. I don’t agree with the extremes on either side, but the criticisms about middle class shopping eaters was spot on, even though he caved in the grocery store scene. I was glad for this because I think being a food purist is rude. The end of Captain Fantastic reconciles a lot of my problems with the beginning. I wish it was known how he funded their life though. And I’d like a sequel to see how his kids fared in finding mates and establishing their own households. They are overqualified for most people.

We also watched Arrival, which was very good. I agree with the method, but the political part of the message teetered too close to globalism for me.

why doing good doesn’t work

by Andrea Elizabeth

Trump can list all the things he’s done to help people and the Dem’s will just continue to smear him. Then he gets mad and complains and they feel triumphant. Doing good subjects yourself to ill treatment from others who couldn’t care less. Instead, one should engage in relationship. If it doesn’t go well, one should withdraw and spend one’s energy where it works.

I saw a video on fb where it was suggested by a Catholic clergyman that we should win over/evangelize others with goodness. I am sugar sensitive and immediately had a reaction. One, they will think, oooo we’ve got a live one and milk it for all it’s worth then move on to the next sucker. Two, even if you get a good response, when things aren’t so good, as inevitably they will turn, the other person will be let down.

Today people want protein. Protein is holiness and peace. Holiness transcends human goodness. It always leaves people thinking there’s more. It leaves people understanding, if not experiencing fullness. Holiness is other, but partake-able.  It is satisfying; human goodness is fleeting. Goodness is providing fish, holiness is finding the fish-leaden stream. It’s the light the candle gives off. Goodness is secular candle and match making. Someone’s gotta do it, but that’s because of the fall.

I never bingewatch by myself

by Andrea Elizabeth

I have also never gone to the theater or a sit down restaurant by myself. However. Since I didn’t think my husband would be interested, and I didn’t think it for the age group of my youngest daughter, at the mention of a fb friend, I started Kimmy Schmidt. Wow. Such dialogue! It has the quickest idea turnarounds of anything I’ve ever seen. I don’t know what to think about the disturbing parts. Perhaps I’m overly sensitive about home school criticisms and exaggerations. And flaming gayness is off-putting.

But, even if they aren’t criticizing sheltered Christian upbringing, I guess I’m worried that people think sheltering is abusive in a similar way, even though it’s obvious that it’s about a criminally led cult and not sheltered Christians.

My husband and I just caught up with The Man in High Castle, also due to a fb mention. I’m a bit sensitive that the most traditional family is Nazi too.

The show, Alone, however, portrays withdrawing from modern society more positively, even if the Season 3 runner up, spoiler!, was a bit gnostic in her interpretation of faith. It’s hard when psychological problems, like neglecting the body and perhaps an anorexic type control issue, gets mixed with Christianity because there seems justification in Christianity for overdoing things.

You done crossed the line

by Andrea Elizabeth

In the comments of Angry people, a few posts back, I said one viewpoint is that we’re all abused and we’re all abusers. This is along the lines of he who is without sin cast the first stone. However, we also draw lines that get people who cross them incarcerated. Crime and Punishment is about this. It’s an interesting line. And what about those who cross it? Shunning and ostracizing are natural responses. And even those who don’t want to shun people recognize the preventative nature of painful punishments. And we have programs for rehab, which I don’t think Drew was addressing in the previous post. His gay guy segment was interesting. Aside: Mike Pence is under fire by SJW’s for promoting rehab for gay people. Maybe some people would benefit from reprogramming (Milo even nodded towards being interested in trying it, not that he would, but he doesn’t criticize people who believe in it.), but I think the energy would be better spent on self-control, like a diabetic with sugar. But people without particular problems, and who have learned not to be co-dependent with the person’s problem, to a reasonable extent, could ‘improve morally’. The process Drew describes in the previous post is desensitization and appreciation for positive qualities. Desensitization is often criticized for making us used to sin. There’s probably a fine line between acceptance leading to condoning, and acceptance leading to reprioritization. Overeating is bad, but so is rejecting fat people. That is not to say tough love is bad when someone is being self-destructive. See, it’s complicated. Milo criticizes SJW controlled speech about fat people, so he’s accused of hate speech when he thinks it’s right to criticize fat people and dispel the myth that it’s ok to overeat (here at 3:50). But addictive behavior is a bit different than a disability, but not as different as some people probably think. And people are too obsessed with being skinny. Skinny people can be control freaks, vain and cranky. We’re all messes. But some people cross the line. It’s weird. Like that verse that says if you commit adultery in your head you’re guilty, but should you be kicked out of Church? It’s weird.

Anyway, the song below gets at relating to line crossing monsters. Perhaps the answer isn’t to say, thank God I’m not like that person, like racists, and say, maybe I am in my heart, and maybe they crave the same way I do in my heart, though with less acceptable objects of affection/disaffection, poor relatable souls.

but theirs does

by Andrea Elizabeth

As a follow up on becoming or not becoming Orthodox, Drew Lynch, a stuttering comedian featured in the previous post, posted another video about when your problem doesn’t improve.

Remember Drew Lynch from America’s Got Talent?

by Andrea Elizabeth

He’s a stuttering comedian. Here’s his vlog on meditation. Seems a British accent does help.

Can Meditating Improve a Stutter

Mercy Circe continues to amaze

by Andrea Elizabeth

She is pretty happily trained on the underground fence now. She started to follow me to the mailbox where I dropped our two Netflix DVD’s, (Shakespeare’s Henry V [Tom Hiddleston] and Pete’s Dragon. We’re waiting for Dr Strange and Arrival) and when she approached the line she happily turned around to engage the other two dogs. Cassie, the middle dogchild, again got in Merry’s face, barking loudly to keep her in her place. While I firmly said NO CASSIE!, Mercy happily pushed between them 3 or 4 times till Cassie finally engaged in a game of chase with her. Merry happily followed after them. She’s so positive with learning what we want out of them. She still has a great fear of strangers though and barks her deep, loud bark, but luckily isn’t aggressive with them at all.

Yesterday I heard a commotion outside and two dogs were in our yard. One looked like a border collie/pit bull mix with a black border tail and white pitbull face. The other was a little chihuahua. Unlikely companions. When we came out to see, everyone calmed down and acted like hosts and guests. Merry hung with the little one and Mercy with the bigger one. Cassie did her middle dog, uncommitted thing. I’m glad Mercy’s enjoying life.

angry people

by Andrea Elizabeth

I watched the middle part of the pbs American Masters documentary on Maya Angelou last night. I did not know that she was a dancer and singer in the 50’s. Then she discovered that people really responded to her slavery abuse performances. Then she was encouraged to move to Harlem to join their writer’s guild. One person interviewed said how angry she was and how she inspired them to be angry too about their roots, of which some didn’t give much thought. Incitement to be angry over past abuses isn’t healthy and is what the left seems to be screaming about so loudly nowadays. It isn’t right.

She did have a point about how she had to walk as a young woman through white sections of town and endured lots of “how dare you be here” glances. This was during segregation which was horrible, but it was different than slavery. There are other people who experience social ostracization. I know it’s not being a good listener to say you don’t have it as bad as some people. But since the black voice is so loud, especially during the last year of Obama’s presidency, I think other voices matter too. At least black people had a community, however unequally incommoded, beyond their immediate family to which they belonged and were accepted. It’s ok for Mexicans, Jews, and LGBTQ’s to join in the complaining, but not other un-average looking or different believing people. Liberals know how to shun too. More introverted marginalized groups stay quiet in the shadows when they aren’t riled up to cause a stir.

I criticize the lime light though. Sure everyone wants their share, but I do not believe this to be a noble pursuit. It is often based in envy, vainglory and greed. I was surprised how many times Maya said, “that’s where the money was”. And if you read wikipedia’s account of her early life (I missed the first part of American Masters), she was mainly done wrong by her own family. I wish she was more of a crusader for child abuse than white abuse. But child abuse survivors often choose other groups to rail against instead, I’ve found, and can almost be Stokholmish about their abusers, or view themselves as blameworthy or even complicit. See Milo Yiannopolis and what happened to Maya below:

“Marguerite Annie Johnson[4] was born in St. Louis, Missouri, on April 4, 1928, the second child of Bailey Johnson, a doorman and navy dietitian, and Vivian (Baxter) Johnson, a nurse and card dealer.[5][note 1] Angelou’s older brother, Bailey Jr., nicknamed Marguerite “Maya”, derived from “My” or “Mya Sister”.[6] When Angelou was three and her brother four, their parents’ “calamitous marriage”[7] ended, and their father sent them to Stamps, Arkansas, alone by train, to live with their paternal grandmother, Annie Henderson. In “an astonishing exception”[8] to the harsh economics of African Americans of the time, Angelou’s grandmother prospered financially during the Great Depression and World War II because the general store she owned sold needed basic commodities and because “she made wise and honest investments”.[5][note 2]

Four years later, the children’s father “came to Stamps without warning”[12] and returned them to their mother’s care in St. Louis. At the age of eight, while living with her mother, Angelou was sexually abused and raped by her mother’s boyfriend, a man named Freeman. She told her brother, who told the rest of their family. Freeman was found guilty but was jailed for only one day. Four days after his release, he was murdered, probably by Angelou’s uncles.[13] Angelou became mute for almost five years,[14] believing, as she stated, “I thought, my voice killed him; I killed that man, because I told his name. And then I thought I would never speak again, because my voice would kill anyone …”[15] According to Marcia Ann Gillespie and her colleagues, who wrote a biography about Angelou, it was during this period of silence when Angelou developed her extraordinary memory, her love for books and literature, and her ability to listen and observe the world around her.[16]

Shortly after Freeman’s murder, Angelou and her brother were sent back to their grandmother.[17] Angelou credits a teacher and friend of her family, Mrs. Bertha Flowers, with helping her speak again. Flowers introduced her to authors such as Charles Dickens, William Shakespeare, Edgar Allan Poe, Douglas Johnson, and James Weldon Johnson, authors who would affect her life and career, as well as black female artists like Frances Harper, Anne Spencer, and Jessie Fauset.[18][19][20]

When Angelou was 14, she and her brother moved in with their mother once again, who had since moved to Oakland, California. During World War II, Angelou attended the California Labor School. Before graduating, she worked as the first black female streetcar conductor in San Francisco.[21] Three weeks after completing school, at the age of 17, she gave birth to her son, Clyde (who later changed his name to Guy Johnson).[22][23]

Angelou held many jobs, including some in the sex trade, working as a prostitute, table dancer, and madame. Although some have tried to erase this from her past, Angelou was public about it. She said, “I wrote about my experiences because I thought too many people tell young folks, ‘I never did anything wrong. Who, Moi? – never I. I have no skeletons in my closet. In fact, I have no closet.’ They lie like that and then young people find themselves in situations and they think, ‘Damn I must be a pretty bad guy. My mom or dad never did anything wrong.’ They can’t forgive themselves and go on with their lives. So I wrote the book Gather Together in My Name“, about her past as a sex worker.[24][25][26]

why you should and should not become Orthodox

by Andrea Elizabeth

They say you’re not really Orthodox until you’ve been Orthodox for 10 years. We became Catechumens in the spring of 2004, so I guess we are. I’d say that it takes this long to come to terms with the following:

Should not:

The traditional services are too long.

Your protestant family will deeply protest.

There are too many rules.

The Priests think they’re God’s gift to us.

The Priests will let you down.

The choir is off key a lot.

It’s bad for your health.

You will fall out of love with it many times.

Orthodoxy is for losers.


The services, like the numerous Psalms, address everything in the right way.

You will learn how hard the narrow way is.

The Priests are God’s gift to us.

The Priest may be wrong, but you learn that it’s more important to critique your own reactions.

Learning to sing a capella and on key is a worthy, engaging challenge.

America was wrong to sit so much and eat so many cows, and so our epi-genetics are messed up.But were Plains Indians and Eskimos wrong to survive only on meat?

Where else is there to go? The ones who leave are narcissists.

It’s the only help for losers.