There are very few causes I talk about on this site, I usually stick with movie reviews and political videos, but Cloud 9 Rescue Flights is an organization with a great cause: no cost angel flights, “to transport children and adults for medical purposes, and also transporting animals for animal rescue flights.”
I grew up with the founder, Ted Dupuis, and he has been doing such a great job that he’s been making the news around the country:
Vodpod videos no longer available.
Thanks to Cloud 9 Rescue Flights for the above pic.
Religion is very complicated. There are a lot of connections between the Abrahamic religions (Judaism, Christianity and Isam), both historical and geographical and Bill Maher‘s Religulous looks into some of these issues.
In this documentary, Maher goes around the world, visiting various places in Europe, America and the Middle East (He doesn’t touch on Asia or Africa). Maher is known for his angry/cynical comedy, but in this movie, he is in search of answers, usually “why?”.
Going into this film, I was concerned that he would be spending the entire movie making fun most aspects of religion. I was glad to be wrong in the end though, this film was HILARIOUS. The only people that Maher makes fun of throughout the film are people who genuinely seemed deserving of being made fun of, but I think that only ended up being 2-4 specific people, he did make fun of aspects of different religions though (ex: Mormonism‘s magical underwear). He spends most of the film though going around to different groups of people of a variety of faiths, asking them questions about what he feels is the absurdity of the underpinnings of their faith.
I think the most important aspect of this film is that Maher points out that 16% of the American public tells pollsters that they are athiests/agnostic/non-religious, making them an extremely large minority that is vastly underrepresented in politics and public life today. Being a member of this group myself, I didn’t realize just how large a group this is in the USA.
He doesn’t make too many friends during this journey and if you’re a religious person, you might not enjoy it when he starts poking holes in your beliefs, but I enjoyed this film, especially his interviews of the Vatican Astronomer and Vatican Priest (which I was not expecting in the slightest). I felt that these two people had the most answers to give Maher and were his intelectual equal, if not superior. If I could re-edit this film, I would have downplayed things like the Truck Stop Church and the Amsterdam pot smoking believer and added in more from the two Vatican interviews.
For the AL, at least, the season is over and all the playoff matchups have been set. Even though I thought the Yankees had a good chance of catching up to the Red Sox, in the end, Boston played better ball and won the division.
That being said, seeing how the rest of the American League matchups turned out, with Cleveland surging ahead in the end of the season to tie for the best record in the majors with the Red Sox (mind you, EVERY AL team entering the playoffs has a better record than ANY of the teams in the NL!). This means that the Yankees will play Cleveland and the Red Sox will face the Angels in the first round since the wild card team cannot play their division leader in the first round of the playoffs.
It may be early to say this, but these matchups seem to favor another AL Championship Series between the Yankees and Boston! For Boston, it doesn’t really matter, they have been the best team, the team to beat all season and have winning records during the regular season against both the Angels (6-4) and the Indians (5-2), with the Red Sox doing very well at home against both teams (5-2 vs the Angels and 2-1 vs the Indians), it bodes well that they have home field advantage.
The biggest difference is for the Yankees, they have a MUCH better record against Cleveland (6-0) than against the Angels (3-6!) this season. This pattern isn’t just this season either, for the past 6 regular seasons, the Yankees went 29-13 against the Indians but only 25-29 against the Angels. Plus, the last two times the Yanks faced the Angels in the 5-game first round of the playoffs, the Angels won 3-1 (2002) and 3-2 (2005).
None of this actually means both Boston and the Yankees will win their 5 game series’, but this is definitely a much better situation for the Yankees than if they had to face the Angels (even with Cleveland getting home field advantage over the Yankees) and I think both Yankee and Red Sox fans look forward to seeing another GRUELING playoff series between these two teams this year!