August 12, 2011

Campus Reveries

I'm like Pavlov's dog when it comes to starting up my word processor. "Oh good!" I think, "it's time to play with words!" Or to vent, spleen, appreciate, or enshrine various and sundry thoughts. I find out what's on my mind, oddly enough, by writing and see what pops up. Usually not much of consequence but one never knows; hope springs eternal.

Be nice if I could organize my journals into one. I have five or six years' worth in one big Word doc, and the rest scattered, but would like it all in one cloud doc, or at least have it in a format that isn't dependent on an expensive piece of software like Word. Perhaps, all this time, I should've been writing in pen and ink, ala the olden times, ala Betty Duffy!

*

Am paralyzed by the fact that somewhere, out there in cyberspace, there's a great blog I'm missing. It's like the baseball card collectors who only want complete sets, and yet there's no way to get a 'complete set of good blogs' given the numbers.

Odd because I'm not that way with books as much. I understand there are great books untapped but they seem more ethereal, harder to find. With blogs, it seems like if I did more research via either googling or checking friends' bloglists, I may find more to add to my already lengthy RSS list. It's getting so that when I see those orange RSS feed buttons I want to click them, whether or not I'll want to read the website underlying them. I used to collect books, but they take up too much space and are too difficult to move someday so now I collect feeds. While still craving books, of course.

*

I've catbirded a seat on a swelling knoll overlooking part of Ohio State campus. The day is mint, full of sharp sunlight settling agreeably on the old grounds of campus, shining cheerfully on Mirror lake and lending a postcard-perfect air to the Victorian buildings.

Spiffy the buildings look, and made more so by the briny gloam seen in through the windows of the impassive doors. Around me a ring of trees: a hawthorne (?) above me, an oak to my left, an osage (?) on my right, and evergreens in the foreground. An eclectic mix. The campus grasses are dappled with shadow and light, a mix that I enjoy for the mix of heat and cool on my limbs.

Campus is busy with undergraduates and their perfect legs, a byproduct of youth, which they often coil under themselves with pretzel-like flexibility. One couple romantically hold sway on a bench overlooking the pond, living life at that leisurely and civilized college-pace. They look more at each other than the sylvan water.

*

I sit now in the capacious west atrium in comfortable leather chairs and a table to put my feet up on. Who does not love a library? Out the north windows I see what look like two old-fashioned smoke stacks. Campuses, like females, are full of unexplored wonders. The floor here is full of cacophonous words, which are made fragmentary by the chairs which obscure full lines. A selection: "The cult of the emperor - Nero - Rome Burns - the..." and "They came across a cave where..." and "Unofficials decided it was..."... "Cave paintings offer stylized...". They run both east to west and west to east but not north-south.

The seats first taken are naturally in front of windows but I enjoy this middle of the room view of things as well. Later I move to a window and enjoy the largesse of trees and sun glint and the non-roil that seems to speak to the permanence of these institutions of higher learning. On all campuses in summer one sees the backward-walking guides talking to their groups of disciples as they cross the green lawns.

*

The blogger at Catholic Bibles has a winsome way of writing and is persuasive in his biblical enthusiasms such that even the NRSV, the king (er, queen?) of "inclusive" language, sounds pretty good. He ranked it number 3 on his top 5 list, and part of the reason is its clear, modern language that makes Old Testament stories lively. I'm amazed at those who can read the OT in the King James or Douay-Rheims for long periods. Meanwhile I've been thinking of reading Tobit, in the much-maligned New American Bible Revised Edition (simply because it's the only one handy on Kindle that has in modern language).

No comments: