Saturday, December 31, 2011

Bookin' It in 2011

I read the following 15 books in 2011. The titles in bold were particularly influential, inspiring or interesting.
  1. Goodbye, Little Rock and Roller - Marshall Chapman
  2. Leavings - Wendell Berry
  3. Unbearable Lightness: A Story of Loss and Gain - Portia de Rossi
  4. Evil Plans: Having Fun on the Road to World Domination - Hugh MacLeod
  5. Don't Quit Your Day Job: Acclaimed Authors and the Day Jobs They Quit edited by Sonny Brewer
  6. Ties That Bind: Familial Homophobia and Its Consequences - Sarah Schulman
  7. The Abstinence Teacher - Tom Perrotta
  8. Love, Ellen: A Mother/Daughter Journey - Betty DeGeneres
  9. Transition: The Story of How I Became a Man - Chaz Bono
  10. Transparent - Don Lemon
  11. Untied: A Memoir of Family, Fame, and Floundering - Meredith Baxter
  12. Sex, Mom, and God: How the Bible's Strange Take on Sex Led to Crazy Politics – and How I Learned to Love Women (and Jesus) Anyway - Frank Schaeffer
  13. Raw: A Poetic Journey edited by Aimee Maude Sims
  14. Truth Be Told: Off the Record About Favorite Guests, Memorable Moments, Funniest Jokes, and a Half Century of Asking Questions - Larry King
  15. Me - Ricky Martin

Friday, December 23, 2011

Larry King:

That's when you understand it.  When it's happening to you.

Truth Be Told, p. 137

Thursday, December 22, 2011

Yashar Ali:

As far as I am concerned, the epidemic of gaslighting is part of the struggle against the obstacles of inequality that women constantly face.  Acts of gaslighting steal their most powerful tool: their voice.  This is something we do to women every day, in many different ways.

"A Message to Women From a Man: You Are Not 'Crazy'"

Wednesday, December 21, 2011

Frank Schaeffer:

When it came to honoring the Bible more than a God Who might have actually created the universe, Mom -- like all conservative religionists hiding behind their holy books -- seemed to ignore the inner witness of Beauty, Humor, Paradox, Complexity, Love, and most of all in terms of what makes us humans, memories of actual experiences.

Sex, Mom, and God, p. 63

Tuesday, December 20, 2011

Hugh MacLeod:

We've all been there.  You know you're capable of doing great things, being in "The Zone," but every external marker out there indicates otherwise -- that you'll never get to do the "life's best work" that you're capable of.  That your career will be nothing but drudgery and abuse in exchange for what seems an increasingly meager paycheck.

Yeah, it's a painful place to be.  But it doesn't last forever, not if you don't give up.  Not if you don't succumb to all the overpriced, treadmill-type external markers of success -- fancy houses, cars, schools, vacations, and "stuff" that you can't really afford, that you don't really need nearly as much as the guy in the next cubicle says that you do.

This is it.

Fight like hell.

Evil Plans, p. 141

Monday, December 19, 2011

Larry King:

My motto is: I've never learned anything while I was talking.

Truth Be Told, p. 130

Saturday, December 17, 2011

Sarah Schulman:

Silence is the greatest reward a perpetrator can receive, whether the perpetrator is a family, a government, a publishing company, or an individual.

Ties That Bind, p. 170-171

Friday, December 16, 2011

Louie Armstrong:

I don't know what I do.  I just know that I do it.

Thursday, December 15, 2011

Larry King:

I was the facilitator.  That's the job.  To get the guest to open up so he or she can hit a home run.  That's what a lot of people in broadcasting don't understand these days.

Truth Be Told, p. 109

Wednesday, December 14, 2011

Yashar Ali:

When these women receive any sort of push back to their reactions, they often brush it off by saying, "Forget it, it's okay."  That "forget it" isn't just about dismissing a thought, it is about self-dismissal.  It's heartbreaking.  No wonder some women are unconsciously passive aggressive when expressing anger, sadness, or frustration.  For years, they have been subjected to so much gaslighting that they can no longer express themselves in a way that feels authentic to them.

"A Message to Women From a Man: You Are Not 'Crazy'"

Tuesday, December 13, 2011

Frank Schaeffer:

If professional Christians earn their living and derive their meaning from their roles as religious leaders -- not to mention enjoy their power over other people -- then they have all the more motivation to deny their doubts (and their bodies and perhaps their sexual orientation) and to call for others to conform to their beliefs.  But note I say "conform to their beliefs" rather than conform to their example.

Sex, Mom, and God, p. 67

Monday, December 12, 2011

Hugh MacLeod:

Ergo, the haters are a sign that you're doing something right.  So you probably want to get other people to hate you eventually -- that is, the right kind of people.  In some ways, they might actually end up helping you define your mission to others, more than the people who actually love you.

Evil Plans, p. 117

Sunday, December 11, 2011

Larry King:

I don't amass companies or properties.  But in a way, I guess you could say I do acquire.  I acquire people.  The joy in my life is meeting somebody interesting every day.

Truth Be Told, p. 35

Saturday, December 10, 2011

Abraham Lincoln:

To sin by silence when they should protest makes cowards of men.

Friday, December 9, 2011

Yashar Ali:

It's a whole lot easier to emotionally manipulate someone who has been conditioned by our society to accept it.  We continue to burden women because they don't refuse our burdens as easily.  It's the ultimate cowardice.

"A Message to Women From a Man: You Are Not 'Crazy'"

Thursday, December 8, 2011

Frank Schaeffer:

As modernity has threatened the belief system of conservative Christians, their resentment has grown into alienation.  Rather than rethink their beliefs, many Christian leaders seem hell-bent on forcing the world to conform to their fears.

Sex, Mom, and God, p. 66-67

Wednesday, December 7, 2011

Steve Jobs:

Innovation distinguishes between a leader and a follower.

Tuesday, December 6, 2011

Mahatma Gandhi:

A coward is incapable of exhibiting love; it is the prerogative of the brave.

Monday, December 5, 2011

Lucius Annaeus Seneca:

It is not that we have a short time to live, but that we waste a lot of it.

Sunday, December 4, 2011

Larry King:

I've always been more fascinated by the singer than the song.  So my curiosity lies in the billionaire -- not the billions.

Truth Be Told, p. 31

Saturday, December 3, 2011

Sarah Schulman:

Telling victims that their abuser is wrong does not help anything.  You have to tell the abuser herself.

Ties That Bind, p. 170

Friday, December 2, 2011

Yashar Ali:

Even vocal, confident, assertive women are vulnerable to gaslighting.  Why?  Because women bare the brunt of our neurosis.  It is much easier for us to place our emotional burdens on the shoulders of our wives, our female friends, our girlfriends, our female employees, our female colleagues, than for us to impose them on the shoulders of men.

"A Message to Women From a Man: You Are Not 'Crazy'"

Thursday, December 1, 2011

Frank Schaeffer:

Many religious fundamentalists feel under siege by the secular world and harbor a deeply paranoid sense of victimhood.  I think of those who turn their sense of victimhood into material and political success and their claims of persecution into strategies of achieving power as Jesus Victims.  I don't mean they are victims of Jesus; rather, they claim to be victims for the sake of Jesus, accruing power through the rhetoric of sacrifice and persecution and grasping at conspiracy theories about how the nefarious "World" and all "Those Liberals" are out to do them in.

Sex, Mom, and God, p. 33