Monday, August 29, 2011

A Breath Of Fresh Air

I have finally started college. It has been fun so far, all 2 classes I have attended. I'm pretty disappointed with my English, it's pretty basic stuff they are reviewing. Alas, it's required so I must play along.

What I have found to be very refreshing is my anthropology class. More specifically, the text book. I have only read the first chapter, but it has blatantly stated the origins of the human species can be traced back millions of years ago, and that the current form we take originated around 200,000 years ago. Huzzah science! It makes me very happy to see even at the community college here in Utah we teach science in science classes! They don't mince words, they don't equivocate, they don't offer alternative "theories", they just state it. Evolution is fact and we share common ancestors with the other apes (all of life, actually).

That is a breath of fresh air! I'm so used to the internet and talking with average Utahns, that I was half expecting the college to "teach the controversy". But they don't! It's pretty damn awesome, if you ask me.

Tuesday, August 23, 2011

Getting Ready For College

I haven't posted for over a week, and it's been killing me. I have been getting ready to go back to college, and it's been a whirlwind of preparation. Most things are ready, especially me!

I went to college for a semester or two when I was 18, but I really didn't want to be there. I went because everyone wanted me to, and that just didn't go well. I quit showing up to classes and doing homework because fuck it, I was paying for it, and I really didn't want to be there.

Fast forward 6 years, and now I'm heading back! this time I want to go, and I will actually try to do well. I haven't been this excited in quite a while, so that's a good thing. For now I am going 3/4 time, only 3 classes, so I can get used to school and working full-time. If all goes well I will be going full-time to both next semester.

Anyway, just wanted to give a quick update. Yay college!

Sunday, August 14, 2011

Sundays Are Relaxing

Today has been an extremely satisfying day. Not because I got anything done, but because I got to relax.

First, I slept in today because I didn't feel like dealing with my hangover. I think noon should be the standard wake up time for everyone. Life would be so much better. I hung out with my girlfriend, Cori, on the couch and humored her by suffering through Desperate Housewives. Then we got to drive down to Utah County and visit her brother and sister-in-law so we could meet our new nephew!

Meet Mason!

Cori holding our new nephew.

He was awake for all of 2 minutes.

I was so excited to finally see him! We were going to go yesterday, but we had already agreed to go see my youngest sister do her performance for her summer theater school. (She did a wonderful job, all the kids did). So we got to see him today. It was nice to not have to compete with everyone else for time to hold him and all that kind of crap. He was awake for all of two minutes then just passed out. Apparently he even falls asleep while eating, and they have to wake him up so he can finish. We had a nice chat with Kyle and Stephanie, but I could tell they were tired. We left after 2 hours so they could eat and catch a few Z's before Mason woke back up. I'm so excited to see him grow up!

I also reflected on how lucky I was to be considered part of the family. Cori and I aren't married, but we have been together for 3 years, and living together for 2 of those years. It makes me very happy to be included in family events and to be considered part of their amazing family. I especially like being an uncle to 2 nephews now!

After we got home we decided to pull our bikes out of our storage closet, dust them off, and go for a ride. I have no idea why we haven't been doing this all summer! It was relaxing and nice to get out of my apartment for more than work and errands. We rode for about 4 miles or so, which really isn't that much on a bike. Seriously, if anyone tries to make you feel impressed by telling you they rode 4 miles on a bike, just remember I can do it easily. And I am very out of shape. Anyway, then we came home and just kinda sat about the place for a second, then I decided to play my computer/blog.

Today has really been very satisfying. It's been everything a day off should be after a hectic week at work. And from what my new 'boss' has been saying, I can expect to have Sundays and Mondays off all the time (my schedule shifts every week normally). This will make it so we can have these wonderful days together more often, since Cori has school during the week after she gets off work.

I hope everyone's Sunday was also enjoyable!

Wednesday, August 10, 2011

Misogyny In Video Games

First an announcement! You can now find my podcast on iTunes. You just have to look up No Gods, No Masters under the podcast tab! The author should be 'The Reverend', though I don't think any other podcasts have the same title. Please rate it and share with your friends!

 Today I talk about the misogyny that is so pervasive in the video game culture.

We need to stop objectifying women in our video games. It will continue to taint the world's perception of gamers if we don't. Please feel free to contact me with questions, comments or concerns at
Thanks for listening!

Tuesday, August 9, 2011

Wow, That Was A Lot Of Posts!

OK, I got everything ported over here. I'm sorry for the large number of posts (as I add one more...) But now I won't have to do it in the future! So, be looking for me on iTunes. I'll let everyone know once I'm available there!

The Reverend's Rants: The Oslo Terror Attack

I rant about the Oslo terror attacks of Anders Behring Breivik. It is truly a tragedy.

Thanks for listening!

The Reverend's Rants: Heavy Rain

I rant about the video game, Heavy Rain. It is truly an emotional masterpiece.

Thanks for listening!

The Reverend's Rants: A Religious Education

I rant about teaching our students about the basic tenets of world religions.

Thanks for listening!

The Reverend's Rants: Speak English!

I rant about American's unwillingness to learn a new language, or to help new citizens adapt.

Thanks for listening!

The Reverend's Rants: American Jingoism

I rant about the jingoism most Americans seem to have.

Thanks for listening!

The Reverend's Rants: Mormon Cursing

I rant about 'almost' swears. You know, like 'fetch you!'

Thanks for listening!

The Reverend's Rants: The Evils Of The Catholic Church

I rant about the evils of the Catholic church. I maintain they are the greatest evil organization in the world.

Thanks for listening!

The Reverend's Rants: The Book Of Mormon Musical

I rant about 'The Book Of Mormon'. This musical is hilarious, witty, and damn entertaining. I recommend it to everyone!

Thanks for listening!

The Reverend's Rants: The Sticky Green

I rant about the legalization of marijuana.

Thanks for listening!

The Reverend's Rants: Censoring Art

I rant about the censorship of art. Censorship inherently destroys artistic creativity.

Thanks for listening!

The Reverend's Rants: The Flag

I rant about the American flag. It's not beyond questioning.

Thanks for listening!

The Reverend's Rants: Porn P0rn Pr0n!

This rant is about the viewing of pornography. It's OK to look at porn, I promise!

Thanks for listening!

The Reverend's Rants: Only White Males Need Apply

This Rant is about the racism and sexism rampant in the Mormon church.

Thanks for listening!

The Reverend's Rants: Hiding Your Bigotry

I'm going through and re-archiving my old podcasts. They will be on iTunes shortly!

This rant is about people hiding their bigotry behind the word 'but'. As in, "I'm not a racist, but..."

Thanks for listening!

Announcement And Question

This will be a short post.

First the announcement. I have the RSS feed set up, you can subscribe with your feed reader in the top left column. That's pretty sweet, you should totally subscribe.

Second is my question. I have set up my FeedBurner to allow my podcasts to be put into iTunes. Would anyone be interested in me porting over the old rants and putting them into iTunes as well as the new content I generate? I'm leaning toward doing it, but I want to know what you guys think. So leave your opinion in the comments below!

Words I Hate: Anything With The Suffix -gate

Whenever something is the slightest bit scandalous, people tend to throw the suffix -gate onto it. Examples; in politics, 'Weinergate', in the skeptical community lately, 'Elevatorgate'.

Why? Why do we insist on doing this? Neither of these things are anywhere near as scandalous as Watergate was. Neither of these things got a President to resign. It's just plain annoying. "Oh, it's so scandalous it's (blah)gate!" It just really piss me off. I don't why it's so irritating, but it is. So just knock it off.

We need to find a new way to refer to scandals. Maybe just calling them scandals? I don't know, I'm venting frustrations here, not trying to actively solve the problem.

Saturday, August 6, 2011

Oops, I Fucked Up

I was playing around with Disqus (trying to get the comments in Disqus to show up in my comments tab on blogger, if anyone knows how to do this let me know. It just happened with RTB, can't seem to get it to happen here.) and deleted all of the comments on accident. I promise this wasn't intentional, and I apologize.

Don't You Mean Agnostic?

Here is the scenario. I'm having a conversation with a new acquaintance. The conversation is long enough that religion comes up, which here in Utah is any conversation that isn't small talk about the weather. I let the new acquaintance know that I'm an atheist. If the next words uttered from their mouth isn't "Oh, um..." they will almost be guaranteed to say, "Don't you mean agnostic?"

I don't mean agnostic. I mean atheist.

It's almost as though they can't wrap their heads around the concept that I believe in zero gods. They would rather twist my words so what I just told them could mean there is still a chance I will set my world into a religious frame. Like, please let him be only on the fence. Alas, that isn't so. I do not believe or think any gods exist, let alone your particular deity.

This exposes what I believe to be a fundamental problem with our current society, particularly in Utah. Everyone assume you're a theist. Or, more to the point, a Christian (Mormon). I can't begin to tell you how many asides I get from people at work talking about true belief in Jesus, and that making you a good person, that I am privy to on an almost daily basis. They all just assume I believe exactly as they do, and they are wrong. If I point that out, bam, tensions arise in the work place. Those tensions become my fault somehow and relationships become strained. They take offense that I do not believe as they do. Somehow I become the jerk. Why? I don't give two shits about what their religious preference is. The only time I care is when people try to force their religion on others, i.e. proselytizing, public policy, yelling at me about my sinful ways, those sorts of things. Why do they care so much about my lack of belief? It baffles me.

I am openly critical of religion. I don't think it deserves any special protections from critical thought, but this doesn't mean I am without tact. I don't find it appropriate to go to work and call out my coworkers on what I find to be silliness. Just like I would be taken aback if they started telling me only evil sinners don't believe in the prophet Joseph Smith. Just like I am taken aback when I hear about believers in Jesus being good automatically. It's not the appropriate venue for such things.

I have yet to see any evidence for any of the supernatural claims religions provide. I don' think your magic sky daddy is looking over me or punishing the wicked or what have you. I find your willingness to allow another person to make choices for you or to interpret text for you appalling. I hate all dogma, especially dogma that teaches our children to be ashamed of being human and abuses them with guilt and the fear of hell. I completely look down on doctrines that support the ideas that women are inferior, rape is OK, genocide isn't bad, slavery is allowed, and knowledge is a sin (I also don't recognize the concept of sin). So, no, I don't mean agnostic.

Friday, August 5, 2011

If I Had A Pet Pig, I Would Totally Feed It Bacon. Does That Make Me A Monster?

It does, doesn't it? I can't help it. I think it would be so hilarious, and I don't know why. It's not even like the pig is aware of what I'm doing, plus I heard that the little pet pigs are a different species than the ones we eat, so it would be like us eating monkeys or chimps. I would totally eat a monkey, by the way.

Anyway, the reason I brought this up is because I have a confession. I am speciesist. That's a legit thing, I promise. I don't think other species deserve the same rights we people enjoy. That's why I'm not a vegetarian, although I have no problems with vegetarians, but I see nothing wrong with eating tasty animals.

I do not think animals deserve to be treated cruelly. I despise animal abusers. I am all for the ethical and humane treatment of animals. I don't want my food tortured before it's killed. I would never mistreat an animal, even ones I don't like (I'm looking at you, cats and rats).

There, now I won't get a bunch of comments on how evil I am and how I support abuse. I just think animals are tasty, and that they aren't people. I may consider dogs almost-people, since they have evolved side by side with us for over 10,000 years. So they get us. The great apes as well. The rest of the animals, not so much.

So that's it. I just wanted to get that out there, and I thought it would be a good first post. Not too heavy, not too light. Now try not to think about feeding little pot bellied pigs bacon and how much fun it would be.

Thursday, August 4, 2011

No Gods, No Masters! The Reverend's New Project!

Welcome to No Gods, No Masters! Don't let the name turn you off, it's gonna be a lot of fun! I will be adding a lot more of my personal life and personality to this blog. I will still talk about politics and social issues, but I will be adding more subjects to my posts. There are a few things I will continue to do:
-Write about politics
-Write about social issues
-The occasional guest post

And there will be new stuff!:
-Open discussions on atheism and skepticism
-Stories from my personal life
-More about my interests and hobbies (gaming, homebrewing, blogging, etc.)
-And whatever else I deem entertaining.

I certainly don't want this new project to feel stiff and super structured. I aim to entertain, educate/learn, and share. I certainly still encourage discussion, debate, and all that jazz. So, without much more adieu, I present No gods, No Masters! Please, to enjoy!