I’m not a super ally or anything. I haven’t marched in a pride parade. I don’t even own a rainbow flag to wave. But as most of my friends know, I stand up for the little guy. Whoever that little guy is, and whoever that little guy loves.
I have near and dear friends and family from all walks of life, through whose I eyes I try to see the world. I know how words hurt, and how support can build up and encourage. And I want to fall squarely on the side of building up and encouraging.
It sometimes catches me by surprise that others aren’t on board. If my Southern Baptist mother can give dating advice to her adopted gay son, and welcome his boyfriend to our family events with hugs. If both my sets of grandparents take it all in stride, why isn’t the rest of the world over it already?
So I was surprised, as the Soccer Allies list continued to grow, to continue to see a dearth of Sporting KC representation. As in, there were ZERO players, bloggers, supporters groups, or team staff on the list.
I tried not to read anything into that. But a niggling voice in the back of my head occasionally piped up and said “this IS the Midwest, these are athletes & sports fans, you’re expecting too much.”
I didn’t like that voice.
Surely soccer is more progressive than, say, American football, baseball or basketball. As a perceived “newcomer” in the world of American sports, MLS surely has more flexibility than the ancient institutions of other leagues.
And Kansas City is a biggish city, with a diverse population. Surely they aren’t harboring hidden prejudices. The Cauldron’s Red Card Against Racism display was successful, even if it didn’t specifically address homophobia.
And soccer fans… don’t we know how it feels to be belittled? To have venom spewed at the thing we love? To be mocked in the media? To have to find our own niches, or elbow our way into the mainstream? Surely the fans can understand what it means to need allies.
Then came the announcement that the May 27 game against San Jose, will be the official kick off (pun probably intended) for Kansas City Pride Week.
This was encouraging. It seems that as an organization, SKC is standing up as a LGBT ally. Awesome!
But it still bothered me that no individuals had come out as allies. And the Cauldron, as a supporters group, had been quiet on the subject. I still didn’t know for sure where my players and fellow fans stood.
Until this week.
Gay4Soccer upped the ante on their campaign for more players and groups to take a stand as allies. They started calling teams out, individually. And SKC, as one of the least-represented clubs on their list, got the attention on Wednesday.
I missed the whole thing, since I was tied up with other things, and away from Twitter most of the day. But the tactic seems to have been successful.
We now have five players who have agreed to be allies, as well as two blogs… and The Cauldron.
I can’t say that this has increased my love for SKC. But it surely makes me more proud to wear the colors, knowing that my club, my players, and my fellow supporters are also on the “build up and encourage” side of the fence.
Rather than the other side, or wobbling on the top…
Simple smoothie designed to keep you going until lunch. Sub in whatever fruits or flavors you like. You can use any liquid in place of the milk, and peanut butter or fruit sauce can be subbed for yogurt. Add whey protein for a stronger protein kick (you’ll probably need to up the liquid if you do).
1.5 cup milk (or juice)
.25 cup rolled oats
1.5 teaspoon chia seeds
1 cup chopped fruit
3 oz greek yogurt (or peanut butter, apple sauce, etc.)
Pulverize the oats & chia in a food processor or blender to flour consistency.
Add milk and stir to mix
Add fruit & yogurt
Blend until desired consistency,
Refrigerate overnight - the chia and oatmeal will absorb the liquid and thicken to become smooth & creamy.
You can make a bunch at once and refrigerate or even freeze them for later use.
What? Are you kidding me? How did all this happen? Gringos went 1800 miles away. Translators went 57.62 miles away (not that far) To a place that is mostly mountains and dirt. To people who live with next to nothing. Who smile when you smile. Who wave when you wave. Where words don’t speak as loud as the heart. Where LOVE is real. It’s colorful. It’s stronger than speech. It’s stronger than looks. It’s shorter than my waist.
We stepped out on Faith. Purely. Prayerfully. No questions asked. We just went. Who are we to be used to do something so amazing? Why did God choose us? Because He LOVES us. He wanted to show us True living. True community. True blessing. and True happiness.
There is no one like our God. Our Jesus. Our Savior. Our Peace. Our Comfort. Our Confidence. Our Strength. Our LOVE. Only He could be greater than all boundaries. All culture. All speech. God broke down the walls. God answered our prayers in way no one could have ever imagined.
From building a playground for the kids in Namasigüe who’d never had anything like that and sharing God’s LOVE with them. To looking out on Levi’s truck into a beautiful sight filled with stars and laughter. To smiling at a little boy, watching him squirt water from his mini water gun. To letting the kids ride on our shoulders. To running and jumping on the beach with my new-found brothers and sister. To sitting on the ground with the youth singing praises to God in both spanish and english. To pounding it. To you da bomb. To LOVE. To sharing God’s grace with families, who taught us more about ourselves and more about God than we could ever teach them. To Zane. To David. To Stone. To Juan. To Joe. To Megan. To Chuck. To Ami. To Paola. To Elizabeth. To Joey. To Stephanie. To Emma. To Katie. To Margaret. To Stevi. To Tim. To Abbie. To Grace. To Silas. To Abigail. To Mr. Christopher. To Dean. To Francisco. To Levi. To Rony. To Freddy. To Miguel. To Lester. To Pastor Giovianni. To Everyone. To LOVE.
What? Are you kidding me? You picked ME? God, you loved ME first. You loved the people of Honduras first. You loved the people from M-I-Z-Z-O-U first. You gave your Son so that we could share and breathe and live and LOVE together. You LOVEd Namasigüe. You LOVEd Limon. You LOVEd Casa Hogar Vida. You LOVEd ME. You.
You, who created the stars, the mountains, the grass, the seas, the skies, the trees, the mangoes, the people, the places, the ideas, the hearts, the LOVE. How could you do all of that, and still…STILL be completely and utterly in LOVE with ME enough to give me the blessing of serving You? You leave me speechless. You leave me full in a way no food or drink or thing of this earth ever could. Full of LOVE. Full of Peace. Full of Comfort. Full of Joy.
God, apart from You, we can do nothing. But with You, we can move the mountains. I’m moving. Moving on Faith. Moving Mountains. WE are moving mountains.
I have a new LOVE. A new life. A new perspective. A new blessing. A new heart. A new mind. You’ve renewed me. You’ve changed me. You’ve LOVEd me.
I made the mistake of identifying my grandma as a geek this weekend. She resisted. This was in a conversation in which she lamented having never seen earlier series of Doctor Who (before Tom Baker) because she felt like she was missing out on backstory. She was also discussing how she hosted Dark Shadows watch parties for all the neighborhood kids back in the 60s…
"If you like something so much that a casual mention of it makes your whole being light up like a halogen lamp, if hearing a stranger fondly mention your favorite book or game is instant grounds for friendship, if you have ever found yourself bouncing out of your chair because something you learned blew your mind so hard that you physically could not contain yourself — you are a geek."
“The thing that all geeks have in common (other than carbon) is not what we are interested in, but how we go about consuming our interests. “Consuming” is the perfect word for it, because geeks are rarely a passive audience. We devour our interests. We are driven to know how things work. It isn’t enough for us just to enjoy something. When something piques our interest or elicits an emotional response from us, we have to know why. We have to dissect it, put it under a microscope, and come to understand it on a molecular level. This mental process is the same, regardless of whether we are talking about breaking down narrative structure or sequencing a genome or designing a costume. The impulse to engage with the world in this fashion comes to us instinctively, and allowing ourselves to explore makes us excited. Since a feeling of excitement is initially what spurred us to dig deeper, this means that our interests drive us into this wonderful cycle of bliss in which every detail we uncover makes us even more stoked about the thing that got us so stoked in the first place.”
My score was 529 wpm. First thing in the morning, with a migraine, I’d say that’s pretty decent. And fairly accurate for my casual reading pace. Last time I read Harry Potter and the Sorcerer’s Stone I did it in about 2 hours.
Some Instagram fans quickly expressed concern about the fate of the service, since it is not uncommon for Facebook to buy a small start-up and then shut down its service, as was the case with FriendFeed, Hot Potato and most recently Gowalla, a location-based app. One such user, Giovanni Gallucci, said on Mr. Zuckerberg’s page: “I assume it’ll see the same fate as Gowalla. Oh well — it was fun while it lasted.” But Mr. Zuckerberg said that Facebook planned to keep Instagram up and running as a separate service for the time being. “We think the fact that Instagram is connected to other services beyond Facebook is an important part of the experience,” he wrote. “We plan on keeping features like the ability to post to other social networks, the ability to not share your Instagrams on Facebook if you want, and the ability to have followers and follow people separately from your friends on Facebook.” Kevin Systrom, chief executive of Instagram, echoed that in a blog post on his company’s site. “It’s important to be clear that Instagram is not going away,” he said. “We’ll be working with Facebook to evolve Instagram and build the network.”