Monday, March 25, 2013

Weekly Update #400

Here we are, number 400. My baseball preview is still a work in progress, but because I refuse to let down my regular readers, enjoy these random notes:

+ I'm not sure what to make of Pope Francis. On one hand, being the first South American pope (Italian heritage be damned) in an indicator that the Catholic church is budging itself into the 21st century. He was not considered a favorite for the papacy by the media, either. On the other hand, his political beliefs indicate he's just as reactionary as Pope Benedict XVI, if not more. What's most puzzling is that the former Cardinal Bergoglio seems to have a wildly varying stance on social issues, especially gay rights and same-sex marriage. Francis was quoted in a 2008 interview as saying "gays are the devil's spawn," but there's now evidence that suggests he's wavered on that opinion. (As far as other issues go, I doubt he's pro-choice or a tree-hugger.) Benedict XVI was a hardliner from the get-go, but Francis seems a tad more ambiguous.

+ Over in Illinois, the wheels are already turning on what might be a wide-open race for governor in 2014. Incumbent Pat Quinn has proven too ineffectual and doddering, especially with the state budget crisis, and he is no sure shot for the Democratic nomination. With Rod Blagojevich finally out of the picture, the future of Illinois really is now. The question now is, will the next leader of the state represent a Democratic Party whose leadership that teeter-totters between tolerable and reckless, or a Republican Party that has been splintered and unfocused since the George Ryan era?

+ Finally, as some of you may have noticed, my blog-writing has been a tad erratic of late. I promise weekly updates, but I've been posting about three times a month. Admittedly, these last few months have been very hectic; since October I've been juggling a 35 hour-per-week temp job, improv classes and the accompanying lengthy commute, and three family members with health issues. I don't want to make it sound like an excuse, but it has been time-consuming; I've been averaging six hours of sleep per night for the last six months, and whatever time I spend online is to check e-mail and test material. Things will get back to normal soon enough.

Next week will be the 30 teams, 30 haiku, I swear. Thank you for your patience.

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