Tag Archives: Sacred Journey Fellowship

Thanks to chemistry I’m not punching random people in the face

Seriously, if I wasn’t taking antidepressants I would probably be in jail this weekend. I ran into one of those H8 preachers on the train back from the RPG session, and it was all I could do to not smash him in the face. And the biggest thing encouraging these people is our new POTUS declaring various groups of people as “criminals” and “rapists” or “terrorists” damning an entire religion or race based on nothing more than his personal prejudices. And my particular H8 preacher was hitting all of them, Black people (N-word), Hispanics (Messkins), and all non-Christians (not enough room). As a member of one of those groups (I leave which one to your imagination) I was personally offended. Offended to the point that I almost forgot my manners to not wear out my cane on his head and face. Fortunately with the help of my meds the preacher left the train with his face and dental work undamaged.

I’m not lying here, this was one of the more stressful things I have experienced lately. Not on the same scale as getting killed, or getting my head bashed with a baseball bat in a stairway, or having bullets fly over my head because someone didn’t clear their background when they started burning ammo with their new machine gun, but pretty stressful. And I’m pretty sure H8r got off just in time because I wasn’t the only target for his bile. There were brown people of all shades riding with me and some of them were starting to look unhappy with the H8 preacher right as he left. I didn’t mess him up but neither did anyone else. I guess I wasn’t the only one taking his meds.

Also today was the last morning service at Sacred Journey as part of a 2 part service with the second part being the last evening service. Next week we start our first afternoon service at 1300 which was our compromise between morning people not wanting to “waste” the day, and night-owls unable to rise before the crack of noon. Lately I fall into the latter category kinda by default as I’m having problems getting my brain to shut down before 0500, when I need to get up by 0900 to get to church on time. I have been getting to sleep usually about 0600 or a little earlier, so 0900 would be like getting up at 0300 if you went to sleep at midnight, or Mrs. the Poet getting up at midnight and staying awake the rest of the day. Yes Mrs. the Poet is one of those morning people (shudder).

I’m still working on the mid-Bucket, but I’m not making much progress. The scanner program I downloaded will probably let me get the engine started, but I don’t know if it will let me drive the car as some of the missing inputs are considered safety hazards and may disable the transmission from going into gear, like the ABS, airbag, and seatbelt sensors. But eventually I will be able to start the engine after I have a long heart to heart with the PCM (Chrysler nomenclature for their engine computer and ancillary controls).

Well it’s late and I have a date to take a walk tomorrow later today.

Opus the Unkillable

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That was a quiet but productive committee meeting on a Wreck-Free Sunday

Today was the first scheduled meeting of the Social Justice Committee at Sacred Journey Fellowship with more people than me in it in a very long time. There were two other people in the room with me which for a church our size is a massive turnout for a committee meeting.

What we discussed was the direction the SJ committee at SJF was going to take. I mentioned how in the past we (me) had pushed for Transportation Equity for a few years, then how we had moved to LGBT issues to synergize with the UUA national push for marriage equality. I mentioned how there were new things we could focus on, or that we could go back to any of our previous areas, but that as a very small committee we had to choose one and stick with it if we wanted to be effective.

The issue that seemed to connect with the new people the most was going back to transportation equity. Both the new people are living in Mesquite, another inner-ring suburb of Dallas just south of The Beautiful Suburbs of Hell that if anything is even worse than The Beautiful Suburbs of Hell. I mean as bad as it is we have DART trains and buses, they have a handicap ride system like the DART Paratransit system that doesn’t go outside the city limits, and one DART bus that goes to the old Downtown. Other than that they got cars, and some recreational bike trails. There are a few subdivisions that have no sidewalks and no direct grid system, just labyrinths of cul de sacs that connect to traffic sewers as like the Beautiful Suburbs of Hell most of the town did not exist prior to 1970 and large portions built during the late ’80s and ’90s when automobile-centric planning hit its zenith. One of the new people lives 2 miles from the nearest place where food ingredients can be purchased, a convenience store. The last half-mile is walking in the mud along a traffic sewer with a 40 MPH speed limit and cars going 55-60 MPH.

The thing about fixing transportation inequity is you can’t legislate your way out of it, you can’t educate your way out of it, and most definitely you can’t PSA your way out of it. Sure all of the above is required, but first and foremost you have to build your way out of it and that costs $$ ££ €€ or whatever your local currency symbol is. That in turn means transportation equity has to first fight the inertia of complacency, that what is being done now is fine and nothing needs to change, especially change that’s going to cost money. If we go back to transportation equity that’s what have to go back to fighting. I’m not sure I want to go back to that, but if the rest of the committee wants to go that route… I’m along for the ride.

And it’s late and I need to hit the hay. And I didn’t even mention the hours building and installing the rail on the back steps of the church which combined with the morning, and evening services, the committee meeting, and the bus ride to the meeting meant I spent just enough time at home to get a PB&J sandwich and a cup of yogurt for lunch between installing the rail and hitting the road to catch the bus for the meeting.

PSA, Opus

If I can ride Francis/es on doubletrack I should be able to ride to church, and the Feed

If I can ride a loaded cargo bike on doubletrack, I should be able to ride the same bike to church for a social or a service, right? I mean controlling more than 200 pounds of bike and cargo on a dusty slippery, rutted path used mostly by cars and ATVs at 5 MPH should be lots harder than riding 8 feet of bike in light traffic, right? Well I’m going to find out tonight when I ride Francis/es to Heathens and drum jam tonight at Sacred Journey Fellowship. The only bad thing I see about this is I will have to leave my helmet at home because I can’t tilt my head back far enough to see past the visor, which means I will have to use my ears much more than I usually need to because I have “West Coast” mirrors on the helmet to give me a panoramic view of what’s behind me. I am building a new stem that will allow me to ride more upright and see what’s in front without having to kink my neck and force my head against the lipoma on the back of my neck. I know it’s a terrible thing to have to build something that will let you ride the way you’re most comfortable when you drop 11 benjamins and change on a new bike, but that’s reality. The fact that I was able to get a Dutch-style cargo bike for so little is solely because they aren’t custom made to fit. That option would raise the price by 50% or more.

Up first because idiots won’t let me ignore it is a letter from a concern troll about that wreck in the RGV of extreme south TX where the perps in a hit-and-run left with the cyclist’s body in the back of the truck and dumped that body in a ditch on the side of the road several miles from the scene of the wreck. LETTER: Cyclist killed The level of “entitled” evident in this letter is disgusting. Using bicycles as your only source of transportation is a “want” but driving your fat ass with your fat ass kids in the SUV to Burger King to load up on Big Kings and double bacon cheeseburgers is a “need”? Please, spare me.

Update on another wreck where the victim was hauled away from the scene of the crime and dumped elsewhere. Bond denied for man accused of leaving injured bicyclist behind dumpster This was the FL wreck where the cyclist got stuck between the rear window and the rear spoiler on a Fox body Mustang and the drunk driver dumped him by the dumpsters at his girlfriend’s apartment. Said GF is now an XGF if what I read otherwhere is true, which I hope it is because it means the XGF is more human than the animal that dumped the body. At least they are keeping this animal in a cage for the time being.

Update on the cyclist left-crossed by a school bus in IN. Bicyclist killed by school bus on Indy’s north side The investigator for this one needs to be fired yesterday. “It was unclear who was at fault, police said.” The cyclist was through traffic, the bus was turning, and traffic making a turning movement across through lanes must yield to through traffic. The bus failed to yield to through traffic, where is the ambiguity in that?

Moving to OH trial has been set for the drunk driver who killed a cyclist and then abandoned the weapon vehicle in a nearby parking lot to go drink in another bar after the wreck. Trial set for man charged with killing cyclist I’m really glad I have some funny links to post later in this blog or I would turn into one of those mass murderers you see on TV and read about in the newspapers. Fortunately I don’t own any weapons of mass destruction needed to do that, the closest thing I have to a WMD is Francis/es which is only slightly more deadly than your average CF road bike.

Because there was a second vehicle that ran over a cyclist involved in a hit-and-run, the driver of the first vehicle gets a free pass over killing him? Barnstable woman convicted of lesser charge in bicyclist’s death

A CO cyclist killer may never get to trial after having a stroke while in custody. Competency review rescheduled for Patrick Ward in Lyons DUI crash that killed cyclist AFAIK he’s more sentient than a rutabega, but less than your average tree.

Report from Ted Rogers that another SoCal cyclist has been hit-and-run. Bike rider killed in San Bernardino County hit-and-run This must be terrible for Ted as much of the SoCal cyclist scene is less than 4 degrees of separation from Mr. Rogers. It looks like there was a witness to the wreck and the weapon vehicle was running a red light as the cyclist crossed the intersection where he was killed. There is exactly nothing a cyclist can do to avoid a wreck like this and even Dutch style infrastructure is helpless against a driver that ignores traffic controls when a cyclist is crossing the street. Speaking of Dutch infrastructure I will have a link to bad Dutch infrastructure that US cyclists would hold hostages to get later in my blog post.

Another wreck in Oz, with minimal information. Cyclist killed on highway outside Naracoorte, driver suffers critical head injuries in ute rollover Once again we know more about an injury car wreck than a fatal bike wreck.

And a wreck in Jolly Olde faces the dock over civil compensation for the victim. Metropolitan Police Sued by Family of Injured Cyclist They can’t directly sue the driver because he was supposedly on official business at the time of the wreck, so they have to sue the employer.

The rest of your Daily Ted. Morning Links: An inspiring and horrifying interview, outrageous bike news, and send a guy on Climate Ride Go Ted!

A combination of infrastructure and lifestyle news. Flipping anti-bike arguments on their heads (+funny video)

Using all the facts to get good infrastructure. HOW MONTREAL BUILT A BIKE LANE BY DEBUNKING THE AUTOPARKOLYPSE Don’t let antis keep the focus on just that one small stretch of street, widen it out to the entire area and count all the parking spots.

And after you get all those separated bike lanes you have to keep them clean or people will stop using them. TECH TALK: THE BEST STREET SWEEPERS FOR CLEARING PROTECTED BIKE LANES

Bad Dutch infrastructure that is still orders of magnitude better than anything in Texas. On-road cycle-lanes. The Good, The Bad and the Ugly (mostly bad and ugly) Where he sees “ugly” and “bad” Dutch infrastructure I see stuff I wish we had here. I have seen pictures of what they consider “passable, but could be better” and I just want to cry…

A bit of cycling lifestyle courtesy of Traffic author Tom Vanderbilt. The Ride on Chicago

Where do people ride their bikes? Where there are people and bikes. Peep popular bike routes in this hella-detailed national map

Riding a bike heals broken souls. Injured Veterans to Cycle 450 Miles from Covington, Ky., to Nashville, Tenn., for the 2014 UnitedHealthcare Ride 2 Recovery Bluegrass Challenge

Last link is a video that shows you don’t know how to ride a bike, while it shows riding a bike burns a ton of Calories. Calories See the guy with the beard? Yes, he rides a bike better than you. (No spoilers)

And those are all the links that gave me fits and giggles today. Still more fits than giggles, but the ratio was a bit better today.

Billed @€0.02, Opus

Patron selection at SJFUU on Wreck-Free Sunday

I just got back from the Patron Selection Gala Extravaganza at Sacred Journey Fellowship. As an active ritualist and as the nominator I had to present Hephaestus as my nominee. Heph and I have some things in common, a gimpy left leg among them. We are both heavy into fire and metalworking, but our love lives are polar opposites, Heph is Monogamous married to a Polyamorous goddess (Aphrodite) that accepts him for what he is and he her. I’m… not. Both of us are all about access, me for bikes in the streets, Heph for the handicapped as his level of gimpyness sometimes extends to having to use the wheelchair (hand-chariot) he invented. I suspect we both like to beat on metal as a form of stress release. Heph is all about making things, I spend more time planning because I don’t have the resources of a deity to get the raw stock I need to build stuff. Even when I have the money to buy the stock I can’t get it to where I build stuff. But that’s a subject for a different post.

The event tonight pitted Hephaestus and me, against Ganesha and the church President, and Hecate and the leader of the Faith Development Committee. There was a procession in with trinkets or candy distributed by the person representing the Deity with theme music (I used Sammy Hagar’s Heavy Metal) then three rounds of questions about how the Deity we represented would help the church and how the Deity wished the church to serve him, her, or it. As Heph is not known as a speaker my answers were short and to the point (we were supposed to aspect the Deity as much as possible). My “bribes” to elicit more votes from the crowd were in the form of chocolate coins that I threw into the crowd like a rapper at a strip club making it rain. I processed in carrying an engineer’s hammer and ball peen hammer in one hand and an anvil in the other (real hammers and anvils), then grabbed the candy from a basket I had placed next to my “throne” at the front of the crowd and proceeded with the “make it rain” effect. I could not see how the persons representing the other deities did their thing because we were hidden by a curtain at the back of the church until we made our entrances. I know that the person representing Ganesha used a rap song about the Deity, but I couldn’t hear what song Hecate used.

Then we went through three rounds of questioning and answers with voting in the form of canned goods in the first round, money in the second round, and rocks that were distributed to each member of the audience. I placed a distant second in the first round, a close second in the second round and won the third round, but as I finished second to the same Deity in both the first two rounds with Ganesha finishing third each time, Hephaestus did not win the event and cannot be nominated next year, ditto Ganesha. Our Patroness for the coming church year will be Hecate.

And that’s the way it is folks.

PSA, Opus