Several Times a Year, This Comes to Mind

Several years ago I came across a story about an amazing little book called Be Bold With Bananas which is described by a high-end art book seller on Abe Books as “an imaginative cook book issued in the 1970s by the South African Banana Board” and  an “unusual and eccentric photo book”. It made quite the impression on me and is something I find myself remembering several times a year at least. And now it will come to your mind several times a year at least too, because what has been seen cannot be unseen:

Book Riot’s take on it still makes me laugh:

This monstrosity is called a Banana Candle, which consists of a banana stuck in a pineapple slice, with mayonnaise and a maraschino cherry on top. And it is a crime against nature. If someone brought this into my home, I would slap them, and then burn my house down and salt the ground where it stood. This photo is the reason flocks of birds inexplicably die and fall to the ground. Goats and gangrene, who approved this picture??? Imagine my horror – I actually touched this book.

The book looks like it started with conversations among bored dock workers during the slow season about what you could make with bananas. And photographed by an extremely sarcastic marketing team. Like, what the hell is this supposed to be?

Related image

Is that a turkey under there? Did they glaze bananas onto a turkey? And paper crowns on the ends of the bananas? Really? I just really hope that’s a plastic turkey under there and no one actually had to spend hours roasting a one perfectly to get this picture.

What brought this gem to mind was a picture a friend recently shared on Facebook of a recipe card from Mccall’s Great American Recipe Collection:

Image may contain: fruit and food

The early 70s need to explain themselves is all I’m saying.

 

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Snowy Day Play

I love videos of animals playing. This one from the Oregon Zoo showing animals in the snow is particularly cute. Isn’t it weird how we’ve been indoctrinated to see animals as unthinking creatures, devoid of relationships and driven only by the instinct to eat and reproduce? Why do we even think that’s the sort of world God would create? Silly.

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“Expelled” Exposed

The National Center for Science Education has put together a website to respond to the new pro-Intelligent Design movie “Expelled: No Intelligence Allowed”. It is called Expelled Exposed. I have to say that red flags were raised for me when I heard a podcast about the movie based on this premise:

Have you ever noticed that Christians are fine with having God and science coexist? In fact, Christians see scientific discoveries as strengthening their faith precisely because they reveal the marvel of the world. So why is it that so many scientists seem to hate the idea of God so much?”

Um, yeah. Loonies like Richard Dawkins aside, suffice it to say that this has not been my experience of the “conflict” between Christians and science. I have already made known my stance on creationism and intelligent design.

Part of my problem with creationism and intelligent design has always been the dishonesty used to sustain the argument against evolution. I suppose it isn’t too surprising to see that this dishonesty isn’t limited misrepresenting main stream science and scientists. It turns out that many of the stories used in the movie to demonstrate this supposed intolerance for alternative views are misrepresentations as well.

For example, one scientist featured in the movie, Richard Sterberg, claimed that after using his position as editor of a small scientific journal to publish a pro-intelligent design article, he was fired from his post as editor, forced out of his office at the Smithsonian, and made to turn in his keys which gave him access to the Smithsonian’s specimin collection which he needed in order to do his work. Turns out that he had put in notice 6 months prior at the journal, had to move offices along with everyone else in his work area as part of an office re-arrangement and needed to turn in his keys so he could be issued a key card that would work with the new security system. Continue reading

One for the "Duh!" department

On MSNBC.com, they’re reporting on a study which found that “Sexually charged music, magazines, TV and movies push youngsters into intercourse at an earlier age“. They think this is because being surrounded by such media influences create a “norm” of early, frequent, fun and consequence free sexual activity in the minds of young people. Gee – ya think?

"Little People Big World"

Over on Slate.com today there’s a column about my favorite new show “Little People Big World” (Sat. 8/7c on TLC). I watch very little television, but I’ve actually been making an effort to try and catch this one simply because I think the family involved is so wonderful. The show is about a family where mom and dad are little people. They have 4 kids – 3 are average sized and one who is also a little person. The columnist for slate.com thinks that a big part of the appeal is allowing people to stare as much as they want without feeling bad about it. After all, the show isn’t exactly edge-of-your-seat drama. I disagree. I enjoy watching it because we see this family defying whatever expectations we may have and being such a neat, better-than-average family. So often when we see people who face challenges on TV, the urge for Hollywood is to “make them real” by having them deal with the sort of sorrid-ness and disfunction Hollywood seems to think is normal. However, this show has a real family who, while not perfect, are refreshingly functional and really wonderful human beings. I think that is the essence of why it’s such a fun show – we relate to this family not because of their disfunction but because they’re people we’d actually like to have over for dinner. I think that any show which can cause people’s physical differences to become secondary to our admiration for them as people is doing something right.