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Monthly Archives: April 2007

My Two Ovens

Just over a year ago, I announced a new online cooking show called My Two Ovens. I promised that there would be video “coming soon.” Well, “soon” came and went, and nothing happened… until now! Yes, there is now a promo online for Mike’s online cooking show, My Two Ovens. Please visit the website at and watch the promo. Tell your friends to watch, too!

Categories: Video | 1 Comment

On Lies

Why do people lie? I’m no developmental psychologist, but I suspect that children get into the habit of lying in order to avoid getting into trouble. At some point, Jimmy realizes that he has a choice of what to say when his parents or teachers ask him, “Jimmy, did you break this window?” It probably doesn’t take long for Susie to realize that she gets grounded if she admits to having fingerpainted on the walls of the school. Children also lie to get things they want. For example, little Bobby might want a cookie. When his dad tells him to ask his mother, Bobby probably thinks himself very clever when he says that he already has and that “mom said it was OK.”
It is this second type of lying, I think, that extends into adulthood moreso than lying to stay out of trouble. Not to say that lying to stay out of trouble doesn’t exist – it certainly does – but I think it is less common in adulthood that lying to get what you want. Both of these types of lying share something in common – they are both about me telling someone else something that isn’t true. I know the truth, but I choose to pass on bad information for my own gain.
But with adulthood comes the advent of a new type of lie – lying to oneself. Generally, when we lie, we hope that somehow we won’t get caught. When we lie to ourselves, though, the odds are probably pretty high that we’re going to get caught. What is the benefit of this type of lie? Let’s assume I lie to friend Dan about not having any money because I want him to pay for my lunch. I choose to lie, apparently, because I suspect that what I want (Dan to pay for my lunch) is not what Dan wants. But this doesn’t extend well to lies to the self. I lie to myself because I don’t want the thing that I want? That questions makes no sense, and for good reason – because it makes no sense.
Lying to yourself is perhaps the worst possible lie. Things can only end badly in this situation because either I “find myself out” and my lying self ends up getting the stiff, or I don’t “discover the lie” and my lied-to self gets shafted. Either way, I’m screwed. So why lie to myself? Why?

Categories: Commentary | 2 Comments

The Chocolate Messiah

Those of you who pay attention to the popular media have probably heard about the 6-foot-tall chocolate Jesus Christ that was meant to be displayed in a hotel in New York City beginning today (Palm Sunday). This life-sized figure of Christ was made out of milk chocolate and is said to be anatomically and proportionally correct. The chocolate Jesus is depicted nude.
Alright, now I’m not saying that I think making a naked choco-Christ is an amazing idea that should be replicated around the world, but I also won’t go as far as some quoted in the media who say that this is an assault on Christianity. How is this an assault on Christianity? Because the figure is made out of chocolate? Because the figure is nude? Because it is being shown during Holy Week? I’m really not clear on why people are so insulted by the sculpture, to be honest.
One person, in particular, has spoken out on this issue. His name is William Donohue, and he is the President of the Catholic League for Religious and Civil Rights. Donohue was recently featured on CNN in a video conference with the artist, Cosimo Cavallaro. In the video conference, Donohue accuses the artist of lying about his Christian faith, tells the artist that he should exhibit his art in “some dump down in SoHo,” and calls the artist a loser. I have a serious problem with this. Regardless of whether or not the chocolate Jesus is appropriate, Donohue has stepped way out of line with some of the comments he made about this particular artist. Donohue is the President of the Catholic League – an organization that sets out to defend the civil rights of Catholics in the United States. As one who claims to represent “civil rights” as guided by Catholocism, some of the comments that he has made have assaulted my Catholic sensibilities moreso than a nude Jesus would. (Remember, a nude depiction of Christ is the most historically accurate!)
Donohue, in a news release published on the Catholic League website, is quoted as saying, “All those involved are lucky that angry Christians don’t react the way extremist Muslims do when they’re offended—otherwise they may have more than their heads cut off.” I’m sorry, but this is one of the most appalling things that I think Donohue could have said. Not only is this an unfair stereotyping of Islam, but it could also be construed as a veiled threat. These people should feel lucky that we can’t chop their bodies into pieces? No, Donohue should feel lucky that he hasn’t been ousted from his position as President of the League with comments like that.
It shouldn’t come as much of a shock to my readers when I say that I am a Catholic, and proudly so. As a strong, active Catholic, I feel that Donohue has insulted Catholocism more than Cavallaro, the artist, has. It is not my place to judge, but I truly think that Donohue needs to take a step back and consider his irrational, childish, closed-minded behavior.

Categories: Commentary | 1 Comment