May 03, 2005

Journal Excerpts

8-17-98: Unsteady I am, athwart the upper walkway, on a warm summer-fallish day, a day Summer is seeking a quick release from your handshake because she is restless, you can see it in her eyes. She has that look; she’s looking over your shoulder, perhaps with a smallish fear. She has her coat on, she will not be staying, but she’s her usual effusive self, just a bit restrained. Summer is turning to fall, by degrees, like a young princess that begins wrinkling and greying. And it was there on the walkway, looking over the expanse of immaculately landscaped grounds, that I saw R. walking in her usual way, sort of a tripping motion, all starts and false starts, head cocking and uncocking as she ambled and rambled beside her Marine-shaved companion, a guy with all the excess motion of a turtle. R. always had that deer-like quality, her longish dark hair abruptly bobbing up at some imagined sound, always querulously testing, sniffing. She had the ungainly walk that is as signature as fingerprints.

8-19-98: My interests are as estoteric and boring to the population as a hermit’s. Perhaps that’s why I am interested in those subjects – they are off the beaten path. Thoreau was an emblem of my misspent late youth - he was my hero, along with Mac O’Grady, an eccentric golfer who spent his summer sleeping in a box (to save money). I was intrigued by the stories of those who never sold out, who were able to be true to themselves not by earning more than other people, but by spending less. It seemed a neat trick, a sweet way to beat ‘the man’. Everybody into the pool, (the pool of work), but just maybe I could spend under the limit and quietly collect enough money to retire young. Maybe I could shock the establishment by not playing the game. Tis no wonder then that I saw Bone as the living embodiment of these ideals. I was impressed and amazed at his frugality. Even he though, a gargantuan saver, eventually realized that you can’t beat the Man at that game, that the business world has it geared that peak producers (i.e. those in their 30’s and 40’s) will not be lost to retirement. Bone, now advancing into his 30’s, is still apparently years away from retirement, and this apparently has fueled this new ambition. He now has decided to play the Man’s game, to become management, to burn his hours in effigy to the C language. He’s given up the study of theology, of music, of the arts….he expects to be able to come back to them when he’s ready. But maybe they won’t be there to greet him when he finally returns.

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11-27-98: My nose itches. I can’t think past my nose.

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12-16-98: I’ve given up the peniscentric way of life.

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With regard to St. John Chrysostom’s – well, it’s apt to quote that old saying about faith in God in general: “if you don’t understand, no explanation is possible, if you do understand, no explanation is necessary”. St. John’s, Byzantine rite, is the fullest expression of worship of God I can imagine. Incense, music, icons, - everything is there to proclaim and express our belief in the Kingship of God. I know it is fashionable now to dimiss anything physical as ‘lessor’, but I for one proclaim and participate in God made visible.

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12-19-98: My greatest fear is religion as a hobby. Let it be authentic or nothing at all; Never let it degenerate into entertainment . Let it be real contact with God or let it be. Let me do it for Him and not for me. He is the only game in town, the reason for being, the reason for every action & reaction.

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