Friday, October 26, 2007

Friday Evening Office Hour Blogging

My office hour after my last class is always fairly quiet, allowing me to get a bit of work done. Or (getting one's priorities straight) some blogging!

If a picture is worth a thousand words, this one speaks volumes:

(Guess what I'll be doing this weekend!)

But not tonight. Not on Friday Night!

It's time for Chinese food, a glass of wine, the latest Netflix, and some Blogsurfing. I have a feeling Red Mr. Peanut is going to be brilliant tonight!!

Thursday, October 25, 2007

St. Crispin's Day

This day is called the Feast of Crispian:
He that outlives this day, and comes safe home,
Will stand a-tiptoe when the day is named,
And rouse him at the name of Crispian.
Henry V, IV iii.

The best ever battle speech from Shakespeare, performed by the best Shaespearean actor. It gives me goosebumps every time.

Friday, October 19, 2007

Harry Potter would be proud.

A true hero speaks out over at Caliban's Dream. Please read this compelling story and spread the word.

Thursday, October 18, 2007

Bad Cold

I am sick with a cold, nothing really serious, just feeling sub par. I should be grading papers but that is far more than my poor brain can take at this juncture. So I am reading other people's blogs. Padre Mickey is his usual eloquent self, with posts about all the saints in the past week. Grandmère Mimi has a potpourri of insightful observations in lovely posts with great art, including a leaf from one of my all-time favorites, Les Très Riches Heures du Duc de Berry. (I resisted the temptation to insert a "the" in front of Les--Liam always brings up that the "The La Brea Tar Pits" actually means "The The Tar Tar" Pits...)

Mad Priest is his usual brilliant self, although catching some flack from the Colonials for his use of a certain taboo noun. If I say I can see both sides of the argument, and agree with both positions, does that land me a spot in Dante's Ante-Inferno?

And Grendel has launched his own blog.

I wish I knew what this New York party was all about...but on the other hand, I wasn't invited (self-pitying sob).

Wednesday, October 17, 2007

Wireless is Wonderful

We now have wireless at the house! It's amazing how much more work I've been able to do in the last few days: I can answer my e-mail I can surf the 'net, and (best of all) I can read OCICBW nestled in my own comfy little bed, while Grendel growls contentedly nearby.

Yesterday I was on campus for 13 hours....and except for a brief lunch worked the whole time. (Good Grief! you'd think I'd be caught up by by now but no, I seem to be even more behind than before!)

As I write this, my Medieval History students are working on their midterms. I can almost hear those busy little minds churning out essays on the Crusades and the development of the Church in the early medieval period.....

Saturday, October 13, 2007

Blessing of the Animals at Holy Family

What a great turnout! The parishioners of Holy Family and their companion animals came out in full force on Saturday. (The unofficial count is 17 dogs, 11 cats, and one rubber chicken.)

Father Keith did a wonderful job, first blessing all Animals of the World, those to the North, to the East, to the South, and to the West.

The he bestowed a personal blessing on each individual animal (including the Rubber Chicken):
Kristin, our Parish Administrative Assistant, gets a blessing for her dog.

Lee and her kitties...

Grendel behaved so well! I was very proud of him.

There was a wonderful service with music, and they played Grendel's favorite hymn, "All Creatures of Our Lord and King"! There were doggie and cat treats for the quadrupeds, and other treats for the bipeds. ("Don't get them mixed up," Father Keith urged us.)

This is Kathleen's beagle. Isn't she lovely?

Oh, and here's the Rubber Chicken.

Yes, it is!

Saturday, October 6, 2007

Non-Canonical Cat Blogging

Sneakaround Jones likes this spot in the bookcase.

Who let the cat out of the bag? (Actually, it's The Pig.)

Phoebe the Moon-Kitty chomps on Elephant's Child.

Thursday, October 4, 2007

Grendel offers a Poem for St. Francis

Grendel the Misanthropic Dog wanted me to post a poem he wrote in honor of St. Francis. Well, it's actually a song, to be sung to the last bit of "All Creatures of Our God and King", the words of which were written by St. Francis. Grendel didn't know that when he composed the song; it must be serendipity:

What does it Mean to be a Dog?
Not the same as being a Frog.
Dog and Frog,
Dog and Frog,
They are Not the Same.

(He begs me point out that the capitalization is Very Important Indeed.)

If Grendel behaves himself, he will join the other animals at the Parish Blessing of the Animals this Saturday. Hmmm. I can't believe I just typed the words "Grendel behaves himself."

Monday, October 1, 2007

Madeleine L'Engle, 1918-2007

My very first post here at TMBN was a quote from one of the best children's books ever written, A Wrinkle In Time by Madeleine L'Engle.

It is hard to describe the impact that her books made on me. I read Meet the Austins as a very young girl. It wasn't hard to imagine that this household, with its joy, love of learning and music, faith and stable family life was where I really belonged. My own home life was marked by dingy and ignoble poverty, anti-intellectualism, alcoholism, and a seemingly endless stream of stepfathers, one of whom nearly soured me on religion for life with his Pentecostal-flavored beatings with a thick, black Belt.

Small wonder that the life of the imagination was my refuge, and L'Engle's books in particular offered the glimpse of a life illuminated by learning. Here I first encountered names unheard of in my house: Dante, Donne, Bach, Mozart, Frost...

Whenever we moved (which was often) I quickly found the nearest public library. My first question after "How can I get a library card?" was always "Is there a limit on how many books I can check out?" The only reading material at our house I can remember was a set of the Bible Story Books (I can still see their sky-blue covers) and I had long since devoured all of them, winning undeserved praise at Sunday School for my knowledge of the Bible. The punishment for crimes not serious enough to merit The Belt was simple and devastatingly effective: loss of reading privileges.

A few months ago I fled to the children's section of our campus library and "sought to borrow, from my books surcease of sorrow." Camped out in a carrel for a couple of hours, I re-read Meet The Austins. It's a simple book, really, but has held up well. All those memories came back, some bitter, but many sweet, of the place I had made for myself as a child.