The trip to Cornerstone went well, if you were wondering. As Jeff commented in an earlier post, Cornerstone isn’t really your typical Christian music festival. It’s more…alt-Christian. Multi-colored hair, much body ink, piercings, ear grommets, you know the drill. The mood was much closer to this…
…than, say, Up With People.
(Man, I just realized how little I know about contemporary Christian music.)
But the talk went well, and I had an interesting chat with Jane Hertenstein, who is a member of Jesus People USA, who put on the festival. It’s JPUSA for short, pronounced J’poosa. J’poosans live communally in their very own 10-story apartment building on the north side of Chicago, kind of like those FLDS compounds, but without the wack hairdos, child abuse, plural marriage, raids by the feds and, of course, a scary prophet. If it sounds a little hippie, I guess it is — they admit their roots are in the Jesus-freaky movement of the late ’60s and ’70s. I read a little in their website and, while I can no more imagine living communally than I can living in, say, Kabul, I can see its appeal, and they truly do seem to be doing their best to imitate Christ.
Their festival is certainly tolerant of all types:
Not sure what this guy’s journey was, but he was eye-catching.
I think this van belonged to Brother Ray:
Brother Ray wandered into the speakers’ hospitality trailer. Most people would notice his yard-long gray dreadlocks, but I was intrigued by his feet, which looked so toughened by exposure to the elements they were more like paws. If that is his vehicle, I suspect he propels it Flintstone-style.
It was a nice trip. A lot of travel for less than an hour of work, but what else is summer for but crashing in your friends’ guest room, driving far up into the wilds of east-central Illinois, crossing all the swollen rivers and creeks, hanging with the Christians for a few hours and then doing it all in reverse? I’m sorry I missed most of the speaker who followed me, from Exodus International. I could scarcely believe this crowd was swallowing it, but I also noticed the speaker didn’t wear a wedding band, so it’s possible she was selling the 20-percent-less-offensive alternative of celibacy for gay people, rather than full-out joining the other team. Dunno.
Anyway, that was my weekend. How was yours?
(Note: He didn’t. But he tried.)
I don’t truck much in the workings of the blogosphere, mainly because it’s a huge waste of time. The oh-no-you-di’n’t between the right and the left can go on forever, and frequently does. But I still read it from time to time, and if I recall correctly, wasn’t there a dust-up about so-called liberal photojournalists altering photos to make smoke blacker or some such? I guess the practice is catching on, only in a more chickenshit sort of way. Embedded video has the visual evidence. (Gawker has it in a one-stop, non-video graphic, too.) The NYT has picked up the story, and notes the network’s defense that “altering photos for humorous effect is a common practice on cable news stations.” I’m calling bullshit on that — there’s obvious Photoshopping and there’s this kind, which is just nasty. Note that one of the victims is Jewish; couldn’t they fit a few dollar signs on his eyeballs?
Lots to catch up on today, and I’ll be back later. Enjoy Monday. If you can.