November 12, 2012

This & That


Rain-sotted morning but at 55 degrees still pleasant to soak up the atmospheric atmosphere on the front porch. The nearby Japanese ornamental is budded with drops.

Oh would love to stay on this front porch and continue to watch this movie of gentle rains falling on terra firma! Very cinematic. The neighborhood trees have mostly lost their leaves but I see some yellow and rust across the street.

Oh the exhilarating smell of rain in the air! Oh nature's bounty rakishly lavishing itself on us! How it reminds me of my childhood when I loved to be in the rain, when I was so much weather hardier. Adults, we fools, carry umbrellas, a tool of the devil!

Oh yes what a fine day it would be to play hookey. To find a good movie to watch - oh but it feels like it's been forever since I've done that. To drink hot chocolate and curl up on the porch all day. To eat chicken noodle soup as if I were sick. To read gratuitously and indulgently and prolifically. To read poetry. To drink the stars. To ride the sun.

Fall is a far-cry from winter, fall a season unto its own that refuses to be stereotyped or lumped with its adjacent bedfellows.

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Woke to reality of a plugged-up toilet. Worst part was finding plunger which was in the garage. I couldn't find it but Steph immediately did. I don't know how she finds anything in there, it's like a wonder of the world. It's frustrating because the plunger should not be in the garage, it should be in the hall closet. The secret to finding things seems to have everything in duplicate and have a secret place for things, the way I keep a scissors and hammer and nails hidden atop a bookroom bookcase.

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Read some of "Telegraph Avenue" last night in order to round out the weekend but it felt of a checking-off-a-list type of thing. Had not that desire to revel in the understudy of words, examining their carriage and heft, their beauty and sagacity, their allure and sensuality.

Feel in something of a book-buying frenzy. Spent the $25 gift card that I won in a work contest in a hurry: Douthat's "Grand New Party", Alquist's "The Complete Thinker: GK Chesterton" and "The Short Night of the Shadow Catchers". But wasn't slaked because I came across Basbane's bibliolatry essays and then a history of Columbus. Going thru a rare hard thirst for history over the delights of language in fiction. Likely partially the result of the election, which has me curious again about past and present realities. You'd think I'd want to escape in fiction.

The Shadowcatchers book is likely the weakest purchase since it's dense and of a topic only tangentially interesting. Alquist's book on GKC is something I'd have bought eventually since I seem to have to have everything on GKC. The Grand New Party book was only $4 so it almost doesn't count. Basbane, an impulse purchase, was just too delectable to pass up even though I have one of his other books unread in my library! The history of Columbus seems a no-brainer, since I don't have much local (Columbus) history and this looks like a tasty morsel.

Still reading Hillerman's book that I took from my New Mexican villa. (The owners said I could take any book I want - Steph interestingly said that that only applied to fiction, which I more or less agreed with. I'd have not taken Fodor's Guide to New Mexico, for example, or even the essays of Bernanos (even though I suspect I'll be the only one ever to read that one) but to take one of the four or more Hillerman novels seemed less audacious.)

As much as I don't appreciate Mark Shea's heavy-handed hatred of the GOP, I do appreciate that he appreciates Ross Douthat.

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Read a particularly spiritually fragrant Horizons, the newsletter of my Eastern Catholic diocese. There was an article on the new evangelization, as well it might given how dire things look in both RC land and EC land. I don't doubt that EC is sort of a canary in the coalmine and may go down quicker than RC since high liturgy doesn't seem to do it for most people. People seem to want more community, something the ethnic Eastern churches are losing due to homogenizing forces, and more Protestant style worship, again something extremely far from the Eastern rite look and feel. Certainly there's a reason the Latin Mass was ditched, and I suspect it's because the RC is flexible enough to change with people. The bend but don't break philosophy is partially what has kept the Church in decent stead these past 2000 years. It would be a great loss to the Church to lose the Eastern Catholic branch so it's a crisis for all involved.

Like it or not, we Catholics are going to have to become more like Mormons as far as lay participation. In a sense, it's sort of like how the Republican party must reach out to Hispanics - it's not optional. Similarly the Church must change and follow the instructions of Popes John Paul II and Benedict.

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Bought orange circus peanuts for grandson Sam but the verdict was thumbs down. I'll give it another try in a few years I guess. Kind of surprised since I thought sugar was the universal language of childhood. Redeemed myself by offering him some dark chocolate in recompense.

More popular was jumping in the leaves with him. I threw him in there at first, but instead of Sam-tossing he wanted the more strenuous form of activity where we both ran and fell in the leaves head-first. We must've done that about twenty times, each time prefaced by the phrase, "ok, one more time!" I bring new meaning to the term "indulgent grandfather". Can't say no to that young whippersnapper.

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Kind of taken aback by the boldness of a local priest who is politically conservative and not afraid to show it, recommending on Facebook that people read Thomas Sowell. Not used to priests being as obvious as he is, politically, especially on the right.

Heard Cardinal Dolan on his radio show today mention that he really gets steamed over the fact that Billy Graham can endorse Mitt Romney without the press going bananas, while if he or a priest did that all hell would break loose. Says it "gets his Irish up", that double-standard such that Protestants can get away with a lot more than Catholics.

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