Sunday Superlatives 5/20/2012


by Rachel Held Evans Read Distraction Free

If you think you’re too good to watch American Idol and have therefore not yet heard Joshua Ledet sing “It’s a Man’s World,” check out the video above. Why did such an amazing performer not make it to the finale, you ask?  It’s because you think you’re too good to watch American Idol and didn’t vote for him, that’s why. Joshua sang the same song on Thursday night, and brought his mom up on stage at the end for my favorite moments of the season.  

Around the Blogosphere...

Funniest:
Catalog Living with “Absorbency on the Half Shell

Smartest: 
Jonathan Martin with “On Mitt Romney, Liberty University, and civil religion

“...This is not an angry editorial written with clenched teeth.  No, this is much friendlier.  I was just in the neighborhood and wanted to roll down the window and tenderly say, ‘You do realize you people are making up a new religion, right?’”

Strangest: 
NPR with “Two Gray Titles, One Sexy Mix-Up

“...The confusion goes beyond the title, my first line reads, ‘They took me in my nightgown.’ At first glance, readers may not understand that the nightgown foreshadows totalitarianism, not titillation.”

Wisest: 
Purpose Fairy with “15 Things You Should Give Up To Be Happy

“1. GIVE UP YOUR NEED TO ALWAYS BE RIGHT:  There are so many of us who can’t stand the idea of being wrong – wanting to always be right – even at the risk of ending great relationships or causing a great deal of stress and pain, for us and for others. It’s just not worth it. Whenever you feel the ‘urgent’ need to jump into a fight over who is right and who is wrong, ask yourself this question: ‘Would I rather be right, or would I rather be kind?’”

Most Practical: 
The Kitchn with “Five Vegetarian Meals to Satisfy Even Mr. Ron Swanson

Most Memorable: 
Jamie (The Very Worst Missionary) with “Stuff They’ve Taught Me

“I don't know what it is about having kids, but there are times that if you can't laugh, you'll just want to die. It starts the day they're born, when you inadvertently poop during labor. To poop yourself while 9 people are watching has got to be the #1 thing on my list of “Reasons to Jump off a Bridge”. Of course, #2 would be being pooped on (which each of my children did within 5 minutes of meeting me). #3? Finding a booger in your hair. Yeah. Been there.”

Most Informative: 
John Murawski at RNS with “N.T. Wright asks: Have we gotten heaven all wrong?

“‘An awful lot of ordinary church-going Christians are simply millions of miles away from understanding any of this..."

Best Storytelling: 
Michelle DeRusha with “One Fish...Two Fish

“We picked up six minnows for 15 cents each at Petco and gently poured them from the plastic bag into the black tub. Noah pulled a metal chair across the concrete patio and sat hunched over the water garden, silvery scales glinting as the fish darted beneath the water hyacinth...Ten minutes later all six were dead, floating glassy-eyed and white-bellied like sardines on the surface."

Best Conversation-Starter:
Alise Wright with  “Don’t Manipulate Me” 

“...In our services, we need to start to consider singing about a few more things. We might need to sing about anger. Or doubt. Or families. Or friendship. Or grief. If we want our services to be relevant to those attending, we need to be able to address all aspects of our lives. Music is a profound medium. Let’s stop using it as a manipulative device, and allow it to be a means to connect with all aspects of our relationship with God and with one another.”

Best Analysis:
Mimi Haddad (at Jesus Creed) with “Gender Blind?

“Our rebirth in Christ opens doors to service in the church regardless of gender because it was Christ’s humanity, not his gender that made him a sacrifice for all people.”

Best Proposal:
 Bob Hyatt with “Last Chance for a Win-Win on Same Sex Marriage?

“The State needs to get out of the “marriage” business. It should recognize that as long as it uses that term, and continues to privilege certain types of relationships over others this issue is going to divide us as a nation, and is only going to become more and more contentious. We need to move towards the system used in many European countries where the State issues nothing but civil unions to anyone who wants them, and then those who desire it may seek a marriage from the Church.”

What do you think of this idea? Does it really represent a compromise? 

On my nightstand...

Most Likely to Make Me Feel Smart: 
The Jewish Annotated New Testament by Amy-Jill Levine and Marc Z. Brettler

Most Likely to Make Me Pee in My Pajamas Laughing: 
Let’s Pretend This Never Happened by Jenny Lawson
(Note: If you’re one of the people who gets really upset when I use the word “vagina” or say “WTF?” in a post, you should not read this book.) 

Most Likely to Make Me Wake Dan Up Because I'm Cheering: 
Unladylike: Resisting The Injustice of Inequality in the Church by Pam Hogeweide

On the blog...

Most Popular Post:
Enough: Or, why we should all be laughing hysterically in the magazine aisle

"...If L’Oreal wants to join the feminist movement for real, how about they begin by not perpetuating the stereotype that girls are so bad at math and science that they’ll go out and buy a product that promises to 'millionize' their eyelashes.? I mean, what’s next? A 'trillionizer?' A 'gazillionizer'? When you start with “millionize,” there’s nowhere else to go but crazy town. 

It reminds me of the text on the back of my shampoo bottle, which promises that all my dry, frizzy hair needs is a little “fortified fruit science” and all will be well. 

Fortified fruit science. 

Because that’s a thing." 

Most Popular Comment:
In response to “Enough,” Stacey wrote: 

“Thank you. Last night at a women's event at my old church I was made to feel, for the thousandth time, that until I am a wife and a mother I...

- don't know what love is.
- am not complete.
- don't have a full life.

I needed the reminder that I. am. enough. I am enough today and I will be enough tomorrow and if I ever get married and have kids I will still be enough just for who I am. Thank you.” 

So what caught your eye online this week? What's happening on your blog?

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