I got a virus last week, and thought I’d just take a couple days, wait for it pass, and return today. Here is George Takei imitating the response of my damaged immune system to that idea: I sat around all day Thursday watching the extended edition of The Hobbit and watching the first four hours of bonus features? You know what 4 hours of listening to New Zealanders saying “Piitah Jiksin” does to your brain? Nothing good. Since then it’s mostly just been me, tea, soup, and lots of old movies.
In the interest of sharing my reading rather than my germs, here are some links of note:
**Stratford Caldecott writes about the paraliturgical quality of teatime:
The English Tea Ceremony is a para-liturgical event of some significance. My wife and I joke about “the English sacrament” but really it is a “sacramental.” It does not, like a sacrament, communicate the grace it represents, but it does represent (and illustrate) that grace, which is the blessing of community through an exchange of gifts in an atmosphere of courtesy. If it does (performatively) establish such a community, for a few blessed moments, then that remains an analogy. Only the presence of our Lord can make it an experience of heaven.
**Also at the Imaginative Conservative, Robert Stacey writes about Russel Kirk and the Moral Imagination:
Kirk elaborated on the moral imagination brilliantly. “The moral imagination,” he wrote, “aspires to the apprehending of right order in the soul and right order in the commonwealth.” It goes beyond our personal, individual experiences to help us fathom the depths of human dignity in light of God’s creation. It “instructs us that we are more than naked apes.” It has been practiced by a diverse pantheon of great artists, from Virgil and Dante to Eliot and Tolkien. Our lives are all much richer for it.
**The New Yorker offers a mostly-worthwhile piece on Boccaccio, albeit one laced with the typical modernist misunderstanding of the man and his work.
**Mickey Mouse has been keeping me company the last few days thanks to Fantagraphics’ ongoing series reprinting vintage comics. Following four volumes of black and white daily strips, they now offer two volumes of color Sundays :“Call Of The Wild” and “Robin Hood Rides Again,” available together with a nice slipcase.
**I’ve been reading a couple of new blogs I’d like to recommend. SurLaLune Fairy Tales has a mature and interesting take on folk and fairy tales, while Ascending Mount Carmel offers some superb insight into Catholic mysticism. I’ve been enjoying Will Duquette‘s new blog as well.
**Don’t miss the Lon Chaney (Sr. and Jr.) Blog-a-Thon, ready to roll from the 15th to the 18th.
**Open Culture offers a few ancient Roman recipes.
**There’s a good-looking new book on the Art of Rube Goldberg coming out, and one of the contributors has some 100 year old strips that didn’t make the final cut.
**And finally, but most of important of all, my gratitude to those who wear the uniform on this Veteran’s Day. God be with all of you, and thanks for your service.