Bag of Randomness for Tuesday, May 14, 2024

  • I forgot to mention this yesterday. You may remember I recently mentioned how a guest speaker at my children’s charter school, which is funded by taxpayer dollars, so we don’t pay any type of tuition or fee, asked the headmaster during her speech if the school was Christian, and he nodded yes. Well, on Friday night, the school held a sports banquet. At the start of it, one of the coaches, who is employed part-time by the school, was invited to the podium and microphone to say a prayer of grace and thanksgiving. That shocked me, and I think I was the only person surprised. I’m not filing a complaint or anything like that; I’m just shocked at how brazen it was. It’s been my experience at Texas public schools, especially in small towns where the majority of folks are open and practicing Christians, know there’s a gray area and respectively make an effort not to cross it. For instance, leading a prayer before an audience before the start of a football game isn’t led by any employee of the school district or an adult like a local pastor, but it was permissible if the prayer was said by a student. There’s a lot of talk about the influence of Christian nationalism as of late, like with the Trump Bible that includes the U.S. Constitution, the Bill of Rights, the Declaration of Independence, and the Pledge of Allegiance, as well as a handwritten chorus of the famous Lee Greenwood’s only song. Here’s a collage of some photos I’ve taken at the school. I think it’s safe to say the school falls into that category.
  • I also meant to post about this yesterday. I’ve told y’all how I’ve been incorporating AI in my life gradually. And, as marvelous as I think it is, sometimes I’m astounded by how wrong it can be. Saturday morning, I asked Google’s AI, Gemini, if the Dallas Mavericks had a game. It should have told me that yes, they do; they are playing the Oklahoma City Thunder at home with tip-off scheduled for 2:30 PM. Instead, it game me this garbage. For the heck of it, I asked the same question to ChatGBT and while I got a different answer, it was still incorrect. It said there was no game but offered to look for the next game.
    OK,  let’s look at how wrong Gemini’s answer was:

    • May 12, 2024, is not on a Friday but on a Saturday.
    • The game is not scheduled to start at 7:30 Eastern but 2:30 PM Central.
    • While the game was at the American Airlines Center, they weren’t playing the Lakers, who are no longer in the playoffs. They played (and beat) the Oklahoma Thunder.
    • They are indeed playing in the Western Conference semi-finals. Each team has won a game in the series, this third game isn’t exactly “crucial.”
  • I’m no medical doctor, but I doubt he had one because of the amount of blood he lost, and that organ requires good blood flow to become what the priest describes. However, I had no idea it was sometimes depicted at way in art.
    • Parishioners Report Priest for Saying Jesus Died With Erection
      • A Catholic priest in England was reported by his parishioners after he allegedly told them Jesus died with an erection. The Times of London reports that the diocese of Hexham & Newcastle investigated the complaint against Father Thomas McHale—an American assigned to Our Blessed Lady Immaculate in Blackhill for a decade—and it was “upheld.” While McHale was reprimanded, he has not lost his position as a result of the Good Friday sermon that some of his flock deemed vulgar. McHale is said to have told those in the pews that when Jesus was crucified, blood would have rushed to his lower body. “He told people Jesus died with an erection,” one church-goer told the Times. “The church was shocked. There were young families there.” McHale is hardly the first to discuss the possibility that Jesus’ asphyxiation could have caused an erection, and the possibility has even been suggested in art through the years.
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