Friday, September 30, 2016

Pride Goeth Before the Fall…Election

Miracle Girl: Pride Goeth Before the Fall…Election

Hubris, thy name is Donald Trump. 
Though it takes balls to put yourself forward for the leader of the free world, Donald Trump cranks the ego level up to 11.

Or maybe 1100.

Tuesday, September 27, 2016

Applauding the Punditocracy Pile-On

Miracle Girl: Applauding the Punditocracy Pile-On

I was right that the pundits would pile on after the debate. But I was wrong about which candidate would be under the stack.

I say, pile on to your hearts content. I’ll bring the popcorn.

Monday, September 26, 2016

The Pixel is Mightier Than the Debate

The press reaction will create the reality for tonight's debate for years to come.  My prediction: If Trump doesn't piss himself, he'll be declared the winner of tonight's debate.

Friday, September 23, 2016

Hitchhiking Savior’s Guide to Redeeming the Galaxy

Did Jesus have to boldly go where no redeemer had gone before, dying over and over again to save the souls of exterrestrials? And did he skip Vogshpere to spare himself from being Vogon poetried to death?

These would once have been considered serious theological questions.

Tuesday, September 20, 2016

Three Gods for the Price of One

Creepy conception of the Holy Trinity in a 15th century illuminated manuscrpt. 
Miracle GirlThree Gods for the Price of One

In this satire, a 4th century Christian defends an emerging doctrine that has all of the taste of multiple gods, without the guilt of paganism.

It's three great gods in one!

Friday, September 16, 2016

God Help Me…or Not

Miracle Girl: God Help Me…or Not

Do theists really believe I need God's help to heal my broken shoulder? Isn't that what the special sling is for?
Waiting to be examined in Urgent Care in the simple cloth sling the Getty first aid people put on.

Wednesday, September 14, 2016

Case Studies in Overconfidence: Hillary Clinton and Me

Miracle GirlCase Studies in Overconfidence: Hillary Clinton and Me

By odd coincidence, both Hillary Clinton and I stumbled on Sunday. While illness was the immediate trigger in each case, the underlying disease was overconfidence.

Monday, September 12, 2016

Disarmed and Dangerous (At Least to Myself)

Back in a wheelchair, temporarily, as I waited for paramedics in the first aid station of the Getty Center after the fall.
Miracle GirlDisarmed and Dangerous (At Least to Myself)

My bet is on my sling healing my broken arm, not God. Modern medicine already repaired my dislocated shoulder.

Yes, it does hurt like shit.

Friday, September 9, 2016

5 Reasons Why I Needed a No Soliciting Sign for Hospital Clergy

Miracle Girl: 5 Reasons Why I Needed a No Soliciting Sign for Hospital Clergy

Hospital and nursing home clergy are supposed to lend comfort to patients and their loved ones of every religious persuasion in their time of deepest need. But they don't have an equal respect for those who have no religion at all.

I should know.

Wednesday, September 7, 2016

Onward Secular Soldier: The Moral Majority and Me

Though my political awakening began with the defeat of the E.R.A., my passion against the Religious Right was first stirred by the Moral Majority.

Now the leaders of both movements are dead, as are their claims to represent the beliefs of American people.

Tuesday, September 6, 2016

The End of an ERA and the Dawn of a New One

Image credit: c.berlet+publiceye.org
Miracle Girl: The End of an ERA and the Dawn of a New One

As a budding little feminist, I felt crushed when the E.R.A. was defeated, shy just three states. The women's rights movement largely had Phyllis Schlafly to thank for that setback. But society would lend the final blow to not to the forces of feminism and cultural liberalism, but to Schlafly and the Religious Right.

The worm has turned on the corpse of the culture wars of the past, which will be buried along with one of its most unbending warriors

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Coma Girl

Coma Girl

Not a miracle recovery, but a miracle of modern medicine

In 2013 I fell into a six-week coma and nearly died after I contracted legionella. The Legionnaire's disease was in turn triggered by immunosuppression caused by the prednisone I was taking for my rare autoimmune disease, dermatomyositis.

I suffered a series of strokes on both sides of my brain when the sepsis caused my blood pressure to plummet. I fell into a deep coma. My kidneys and lungs began to fail, as my body was began dying one organ at a time. My doctors told my loved ones to give up hope for my full recovery. They expected me to die, and even if I somehow lived, I would remain a vegetable or at best left so hopelessly brain-damaged that I would never be same. But unbeknownst to them, while they were shining lights in my eyes and shaking their heads, I was telling them in my coma-dream--my secular version of a near-death experience--to leave me alone because I was trying to get back to sleep. I was experiencing what is known as covert cognition, the subject of my Skeptical Inquirer article "Covert Cognition: My So-Called Near-Death Experience," which appeared in their July/August issue.

But it wasn't a miracle--despite what so many continue to believe--that I recovered so fully. I owe my life not to God, but the miracles of modern medicine, as well as the nature of the watershed-area brain damage I suffered, as I detailed in my article and in this blog.