Wednesday, April 30, 2008

How 'Bout This?

I Quite Like It

Ok, even though there is all kinds of news being made about this picture, I think it is quite tasteful. Nick has posted his feeling here. The photo reminds me of the art of some of the old masters.

Tuesday, April 29, 2008

Heterosexual Lifestyle

Those perverse heterosexuals! We should not let them have children because all they want to do is use them as sex slaves!

I know this is a serious issue and I don't mean to make light of it. But I do want to highlight the absurdity of the arguments used against us. If this were a gay man, the outrage would be extreme to say the least. People do disgusting things. It is not a gay or straight thing. It is a human thing.

Monday, April 28, 2008

Not Too Surprising

You know the Bible 100%!

Wow! You are awesome! You are a true Biblical scholar, not just a hearer but a personal reader! The books, the characters, the events, the verses - you know it all! You are fantastic!

Ultimate Bible Quiz
Create MySpace Quizzes

Sunday, April 27, 2008

Rogaine Sunday

I love my newly adopted denomination. What other church would have a Sunday dedicated to hair growth? I mean, really, there are church Sundays dedicated to world peace and world prayer. There are Sundays dedicated to homelessness and missions. But only the Episcopal church would dedicate an entire Sunday to those forgotten people of the church community, THE BALD!

How cool is that!!

Huh? What was that Beartoast Joe? It's NOT Rogaine Sunday? IT'S ROGATION SUNDAY? You mean I preached on the wonders of hair growth when I wasn't supposed to? IS THAT WHY ALL THE PEOPLE WERE SNICKERING?? The Episcopal church does not devote a whole Sunday to the bald and pharmaceuticals for them????!!!!???


Saturday, April 26, 2008

Major Moving Day

Today we got to move all the really big stuff. Actually, it started yesterday with the TV. The thing weighs in at about 200 lbs. Getting it down the 27 stairs was a pain. But it got down and into the new apartment all in one piece.

Today we moved the sofa, the chairs, the washer and dryer, the bed, and the dishwasher. Trying to get the sofa down the steps was a big pain. The person who "helped" us left it drag. Thankfully, the leather was strong enough to survive the pavement. Now the dryer, we are not sure if that survived. It went clunking down the steps, it almost fell off the dolly. It was nice to have help, but, as Nick said, "He is kind of like a bull in a china shop."

Right now, if I have to go up another step I will scream!

Friday, April 25, 2008

Eight Months!

He and the Little Lady are resting up getting ready for the big rush just ahead!

(Photo courtesy of Alex's Travel Tales)

Thursday, April 24, 2008

More on Moving

I'll tell you, there is nothing that will increase your energy more than having the Idiot Neighbor sitting outside playing with his future juvenile delinquent and strain on the correctional systems kid. I was childish at first and gave him the evil eye. But then I just kept on moving, not even acknowledging his presence. I usually would say "Hi" to him when I would see him, I tried to be neighborly, but since we don't have to live near them, not anymore.

Oh well, I was going to stop but he gave me the incentive to keep on going. So I guess I can be grateful for that!

Wednesday, April 23, 2008

Thoughts About Life

The last couple of days have been long. Between moving and work, I am about to fall apart. I'm getting too old for this.

Sorry, this is probably going to be a whiny post, because I am feeling whiny. I know there is pain in the world, but... I know, focus on the good things in life. Hey! Michael T. Weiss is on TV! He is such a hottie! (I am trying to cheer myself up!)

But, the move will occur and we will get everything done. Then we will be living in a much more quiet place.

Tuesday, April 22, 2008

The Video Is Still Out There

I posted earlier about a video that was on GodTube. But, as GodTube would have it, the video was removed. BUT! The video live on at YouTube!

Moving Woes...

(h/t to Lolcats)

Sunday, April 20, 2008

I Guess It Must Only Be THEIR Messages About God

I knew it was too good to be true. Of course only the fundamentalist message would be the one that would be allowed on the site. They say they are "Broadcast[ing] Him," but only the "Him" that their little minds can create. Of course, a message that may challenge their views would get deleted. How sad.

What was on the video were messages by various clergy about how inclusion was Christian and Biblical. Of course, they would remove it.

Friday, April 18, 2008

The Earth Moved

An entry to my bucket list got filled this morning. I was sleeping in a hotel in Ypsilanti, MI when around 4:30 am I felt like someone was trying to wake me up. Now this would not be so bad except I was all alone at the hotel. I am at an Episcopal retreat and Nick is at home. Well...I thought, "Are we having an earthquake?" I looked around and tried to fall back to sleep. But I kept shakeing. Then I rolled over and the shaking stopped. I figured I must have pinched a nerve or something and that is what made me shake. But then the next morning, I saw that there was an earthquake in Illinois! I got to experience an earthquake!

I actually was in another earthquake when I was visiting LA, but I slept through that one. So this was the first one that I actually got to feel! It was a weird sensation.

Thursday, April 17, 2008

A New Address

Nick and I will be moving. After dealing with the neighbor, the apartment complex is going to allow us to move. We are moving to a ground floor in another building. It is good in that we are getting away from the idiot living under us. It is also good in that we get a ground floor with a patio. The not so good part is that we have to move, we have to changes all the addresses, and we have to get the utilities changed.

But hopefully now we will not have to worry about getting attacked by the person who lives below us. What is also nice is that the model apartment is above us so we will not have anyone living above us.

I hope this is a chapter that is finally over.

Wednesday, April 16, 2008

Going Postal

I really am beginning to understand how someone could "Go Postal." I would consider myself to be a fairly laid-back kind of person, but yet, lately I have really wanted to hurt someone. I know that after it happened, I would feel like crap. But there still is this desire to exert power over something in my life.

The idiot neighbor from downstairs again was pounding on the ceiling. I just want to deck him! So many other things have been happening in life that having a bully do his thing is just pushing me that much closer to doing something stupid.

I think it all has something to do with feeling like I have some kind of power in the world. Everything else seems to be exerting power over me, I finally want to be able to exert some power of my own. I want to the one making the decisions and not just following whatever I am being told.

I used to be in a situation where I was able to exert influence. Now I seem to have none at all. Part of me just wants to do something just to make something happen.

Package me up in the straight jacket. Get the macaroni and glue ready. I'm on my way!

General Thoughts

Work has been interesting. Today, at the end of my shift, an incredibly cute guy winked at me and I got to check out ring up the purchase of the Richard Gere look alike. I also told Richard that I could ring up his food purchases also. He said, "Really? I didn't know you could do that." It took everything in my power to not say, "Of course I can, I am very versatile." And just yesterday, Richard came up and said, "Hi Ben" and I didn't even have my name tag on!

Don't worry, things are still great between Nick and me, it is just nice to receive some attention from some very attractive men.

Otherwise, still dealing with the whole church thing. I feel like I am a chips and dip kind of person but the Episcopal Church is a caviar and crackers kind of place. I am afraid if I try to be a caviar kind of person, that I will eventually burn out. but I am also afraid that if I am not a caviar kind of person, I will not find a church in the ECUSA. I am also afraid if I go to another denomination, I will again have to spend another year getting "accustomed" to the new denomination. It just drives me nuts.

I will be going to a clergy retreat over the next few days. Hopefully I can make some network connections. I really don't want to go but it would be politically incorrect to miss it. Oh well.

Nick is working a bunch. He has had 17 hours of overtime last week and has had 6 already this week. I just keep reminding him that it is not worth getting sick over. Making a bunch of money just to have to spend it on a doctor is foolish.

Well, that is about it for now.

Tuesday, April 15, 2008

My View From The Box

We Got New Frappuccino Blender Pitchers!! Look at how clear they are! If that doesn't get you all hot and bothered, then I don't know what is wrong with you!

Work has been a thrill this past week. One of my coworkers is on vacation so we are working short. This means that for the past two days I have been working the last five and a half hours of my shift alone. Now granted, it will get busy and it is hard to keep going when you are there all alone. But what is worse is spending five and a half hours with no one to talk to. And we are not supposed to be doing crosswords or sudokus. And of course, there is no place to sit down. Come on, I am over 40 and overweight, GIVE ME A CHAIR!

Something We Can All Learn From

This clip has been making its way around the 'net lately. It seems to be hitting a chord with many people.

I think one of the reasons is that many of us of the GLBT variety have gone through life being the ones picked on and the ones made to feel our gifts and talents were not appreciated. And although we continue to work to find our voice in the world, I know that for me there still seems to be times of difficulty. When things get difficult, it is easy to revert to the old ways of reacting to the world.

As for myself, I could not understand what was so wrong with me that would make others want to be mean to me. Now I understand that it was not me. Yes, I may have been different, but my differences made others feel uncomfortable. It was not my problem they felt uncomfortable, but they felt the need to change me to ease their anxiety. I know that, but it still hurt.

More power to this kid with the golden voice! As I said in my sermon, to be human is to be scared. But just keep moving, just keep living. Our scars make us who we are, wonderfully unique individuals.

(h/t to The Mangina Monologues, Aussielicious, and Towleroad)

Friday, April 11, 2008

Heterosexual Indoctrination?

Jim Burroway over at Box Turtle Bulletin makes a wonderful point: Where are all the fundamentalists complaining about the sanctity of marriage and the danger to children when it doesn't involve gay sex? Isn't it just as outrageous that children are being abused? Isn't it polygamy polygamy?

If this were a gay based cult, the fundies would be all over it like flies on feces. But since it is "one of them" they are not saying a word.

Hypocrisy come in all forms.

Grinding Grit or Sandpaper

I was talking with a former colleague of mine yesterday. He was kind enough to let me bend his hear for a while. So many things in my life have been wearing at me. I don't hate my job, but it really doesn't provide a lot of intellectual stimulation. You can only ask people how the weather is so many times before you start to going bonkers.

I truly miss being able to be "smart." One of the things that helps is one of my coworkers is a thinker so we can have some intriguing conversations. Otherwise, it becomes just another line of lattes and caramel frappuccinos.

I also really enjoyed preaching and leading worship the past two weeks, but I am a bit apprehensive of the rector returning. She is very nice, but she is also very proper. Maybe that is one of my downfalls, but I am not really a "proper" person. I like to think of myself as a comfort model. (Heaven knows I have gained my share of cushion.) And I feel like I have to become something that I am not just to serve in the church. It took me 41 years to come out, I don't want to start hiding all over again.

My colleague cautioned me that stress can take on two forms: It can grind us down to nothing or, if we have faith, it can be like sandpaper in the hands of a craftsman and form us into a work of art. My problem: to the piece of wood, they both feel the same.

I want to believe that God is at work sanding away the rough edges. I want to believe that all of this is for a purpose. I want to believe that eventually Nick and I will come out of this and be thankful for the experience. But right now, that is difficult to see.

The Psych In Me Loves This

(h/t to YarravillePaul)

Wednesday, April 09, 2008

Boring Days

Not much happening on this side of the internet. I guess that is a good thing. Day in - Day out. Not much happening. But that also means not much happening on the job market, either. Oh well.

Sunday, April 06, 2008

For sattvicwarrior

Almost a Preacher's Worst Nightmare

I say "almost" because the worst nightmare is to get to the church and not have anything written for a sermon. Today I got to church and realized that I had written a sermon for the wrong gospel reading!

I was looking for something from Easter 3 Year A and grabbed (and even edited) something from Easter 3 Year B. The Year B reading is the part right AFTER the Year A reading. Most of the stuff in the Year B reading is not in the Year A reading! I had to rewrite the sermon on the fly. I had just finished reading the gospel to the congregation and then looked at the opening line of my sermon. My immediate thought was , "oh shit."

I was able to muddle through the first service without sounding like too much of an idiot. I was able to regroup and plan between services and actually did a pretty good job on the second service. In fact, I received complements on my sermon and how much people liked it.

I guess I am a better extemporaneous speaker than I thought or the Holy Spirit planted good things in the ears of the congregation. I tend to believe the Spirit was at work, OVERTIME, today.

Here is what was written:

Easter 3 Year A Luke 24:36-48 April 6, 2008 Rev. Benton Quest

Can you really blame the disciples? In the same situation, how many of us would believe that Jesus was actually sitting there eating with us? The disciples had seen the dead body. They had put Jesus in the tomb themselves. And yes, there he was, sitting with them, claiming to be alive. That would be pretty hard to believe if you asked me. I know I would want proof.
A few years ago, I had seen David Copperfield at the Wharton Center. That show was quite impressive! Things like Lincoln Town Cars were appearing out of nowhere. And once the car appeared, David got into the care to start it, just to prove it was real. In many ways, David was doing something similar to what Jesus did; he was trying to prove that something that was incomprehensible was in fact real.
Now I am not saying that what Jesus did was some kind of magic trick, far from it. But what I am saying is that Jesus was trying to prove, not only to the disciples, but also to us that would follow, that this was no ghost sitting in their presence; this was a real flesh and blood person. Jesus was trying to show that he was not some kind of reanimated corpse or zombie. He was not a figment of their imagination. He was real and he was really present. In permitting the disciples to touch him and see him eat, Jesus was helping to remove any doubt or excuse for belief.
Unfortunately, today we do not have Jesus present with us to touch. We do not have Jesus here to eat with us. We do not have Jesus walking down the aisle and sitting in the pew beside us. We do have Jesus bodily here, but I think we would all love an opportunity to actually meet Jesus face-to-face.
Well, I’m here to tell ya! Today I will give you the opportunity to see Jesus and to touch Jesus. Today I will give you the opportunity to be in the presence of Jesus!
We know that Jesus comes to us when we gather around the altar for communion. Jesus become the bread, Jesus becomes the wine. Jesus strengthens us and nourishes us through the gifts of his body and blood. But eating the body and the blood is not the same as sitting at the table and with Jesus and watching the body and blood eat! It would be great to have that opportunity to sit down with Jesus and share a meal.
We are touched by Jesus in our baptism. The water that washes us is the touch of Jesus. This touch takes us through Christ’s death and gives us the promise of life through his resurrection.
And although we understand through faith that Christ is present in these various ways, our senses keep telling us something different. Our senses are not satisfied. We are creatures of our senses and we need to have our senses fulfilled.
An example of our senses needing to be fulfilled would be liquid diets. If all eating was was just a way of getting nutrition, then we should be able to drink all of our nutrients and be done with it. But what happens is even when people drink a complete diet, all the nutrients and everything, they still have this need to chew things. Even though they are getting all their bodies need, the people on these diets still need to have that physical sensation of eating and chewing.
A similar thing applies to us; even though we may know that Jesus is present in Holy Communion and in Baptism, it still is not what we would want. We want what the disciples got that night in the upper room. We want the experience they had. We want to see Jesus. We want to touch Jesus. We want to talk with Jesus and eat with Jesus.
We are kind of selfish I this desire. We should be happy to have had Jesus come as one of us, even if it was two thousand years ago. We should be happy to have had Jesus die for our sins. We should be happy just to have had the opportunity to be named children of God. But being the people we are, we want to have our senses satisfied. Even though we know that we already have more than we deserve, because of who we are, we want more.
And God in God’s wisdom has taken care of this! God sent Jesus to be among us. And in breaking the bonds of death, Jesus returned to us. But in Jesus’ ascension into Heaven, we are left again. Yet we are not left alone. Although it is not in today’s reading we are given the gift of the Holy Spirit. It is through the Holy Spirit that Jesus remains with us. Through the work of the Holy Spirit in our lives, we are empowered to carry out Christ’s mandate into the world. It is through the Holy Spirit working through us that Jesus is still present in the world.
So, now we have come to the moment you all have been waiting for. You will now meet Jesus face-to-face! Ready? Ok, please turn to the person sitting next to you and say, “Jesus! It is so good to have you here!” That is right! The person sitting next to you is how Jesus is at work in the world. Even those who may not be present here are still part of the body of Christ. If you help the person next to you, you are helping Jesus! If you invite the person next to you out for breakfast, you can even watch Jesus eat! We can see Jesus in the hands of those who lift up the poor. We see Jesus in the feet of those who walk to help the ones in need. When those hands that lift the poor are our own, we see Jesus in our own hands. When we are the ones who walk, we can see Jesus in out own feet. Yes, we see Jesus in the people around us, but we can even see Jesus when we look into the bathroom mirror.
In our baptism, we have become one with Christ. We are the tools Christ uses to work in the world. When Christ needs hands, we are his hands. When Christ needs words, we are his mouth. When Christ needs to make an appearance in the world, we are his way of appearing. When a stranger walks into our midst, we become Christ’s way of greeting that person.
Although I had been talking about magic, Christ’s presence is not magic trick. Christ eating with the disciples was no magic trick. Christ’s presence with us now is no magic trick. Christ is present with us! Christ is present in us! Christ is the person sitting next to us! Christ is the person in the car driving past. In returning from the dead, Christ broke the bonds of death. In returning from the dead, Christ broke the bonds of place.
It really was Jesus at the meal in the upper room, and it really is Jesus here at the altar with us today! We may have trouble believing, but when we look at those around us and we look at ourselves, we are seeing Jesus alive! He really is here!

What the second service heard, was similar to this, but there was a whole lot more added!

Wednesday, April 02, 2008

Divine Revelation

Well, I have had a revelation: I was watching The Jerry Springer Show, when Jesus appeared to me. Granted, Jesus looked an awful lot like Perez Hilton, but hey, I cannot control theophanies.

But Perez Hilton, oops!, I mean Jesus, told me that the best way to reach out to the Heathen Homo (hence forth to be known as "HH") is by infiltrating their ranks as a SPY! So, from now on, I AM ONLY PRETENDING TO BE SAME-SEX ATTRACTED! (Really, I am not SSA but it is the least I can do to save all of you HHs from the trials of the AFTERLIFE! (And no, I am not talking about the party here at Quest Labs after the bars close.))

So, I will be around for a while, I have to be around to save you all from yourself! I will make the great sacrifice!! And remember, I AM NOT A HH! I AM JUST A SPY!

Nick's Return: The Follow-Up



Well, the surprises for Nick kind of backfired.

As you can see, one of the surprises was to dye the dog blue. To get this much was a pain and I really didn't want to spend a whole lot of money to do it. So she had a blue head and a blue back. Unfortunately, when Nick came home, he thought she had gotten into some toilet cleaner or something and I got a panicked text message to call him! I reassured him that the blue was only sidewalk chalk and that the dog was ok.

Then there was the fake PA. I bought some clip-on ring earrings for the purpose. (Nick keeps threatening that if I come home with a PA, he will disown me!) So, I put the earring on/in and head home. When the time comes for the great unveiling, THE RING FELL OUT! So there was just the unadorned me. All that planning (and a bit of pain) for nothing. Bummer.

So, I guess both surprises were a bust. Oh well.

Tuesday, April 01, 2008

My Last Post

Well, faithful readers, Quest Labs is closing.

Due to lack of federal funding and much deep soul searching, I have decided that what I have been hearing from the folks at Exodus is correct. I have recommitted my life to Jesus and have felt a great change in my life. Having Nick gone for a while has shown me the error in my ways. I am not homosexual, I just have been giving into the evil spirit of homosexuality.

You too can be changed by Christ! Give your life to Jesus and just pray! We don't need to be lovers of men, we can follow the example of David and Jonathan and just be really good friends! We can stand naked before each other and not have sex! God can do anything! God can deflate that same-sex lust inspired erection! Just think of Jesus as your "Homo Anti-Viagra."

From this point forward, I pledge to only attend things that build up my true heterosexual identity. I will only shower at the YMCA where we manly men can stand naked before each other like David and Jonathan. I will only play manly sports where we manly men show are manliness by smacking each other on the butt. And I will only swim with other men who are proud enough of their manliness to unapologetically thrust it into the world in a pair of white Speedos.

It has been an interesting ride, my faithful readers. Know that Jesus can change you too! Just leave me a comment and I will pray that you too find the power to thrust your manliness upon the world in a pair of white Speedos!