7QT: Delighting in the Details


--- 1 --- After I wrote about seeing Macbeth last week, my mother sent me this excellent video of Sir Ian McKellan unpacking one of the Thane of Cawdor's speeches, and I figured all y'all might appreciate it as well.--- 2 --- I love it when artisans explain a little about their world, and invite me in to see how it works and to take pleasure in it, too.  That's why I really liked this essay on margins.  Yup.  Margins. The movie focuses on a Japanese publishing company’s small dictionary … [Read more...]

God’s Call to Restore Our Common Sense


Today is the feast of Saint Augustine, my confirmation saint.  In celebration, this morning I made sure to leave some time to pray the Office of Readings in the Divine Office, and I was particularly struck by this passage from Jeremiah (4:1-3): If you wish to return, O Israel, says the Lord, return to me. If you put your destestable things out of my sight, and do not stray, Then you can swear, "As the Lord lives," in truth, in judgment, and in justice; Then shall then nations use his name … [Read more...]

Charity for Society’s Canaries


After Robin Williams's suicide, SlateStarCodex wrote a thoughtful meditation, and I'd like to highlight one of the points he wound up making.  Scott works in mental health, and he wound up discussing the idea of "being a burden" and pointing out that this isn't an intrinsic fact about a person, but the result of who they are and how their society relates to them. Society got where it is by systematically destroying everything that could have supported him [a patient] and replacing it with t … [Read more...]

On Writing (and thus on Wizardry)

Sam Rocha

Sam Rocha (pictured above, and the author of A Primer for Philosophy and Education and creator of Late to Love, an album inspired by Augustine) has been interviewing the bloggers in Patheos's Catholic channel about the method and madness of their writing, and, this week, it was my turn.  If you head over chez lui, you can check out our conversation, which includes references to So You Want to be a Wizard and the Logical Journey of the Zoombinis.Here's a teaser … [Read more...]

Solving a Problem vs Being with a Person [Pope Francis Bookclub]


In 2014, I’m reading and blogging through Pope Francis/Cardinal Bergoglio’s Open Mind, Faithful Heart: Reflections on Following Jesus.  Every Monday, I’ll be writing about the next meditation in the book, so you’re welcome to peruse them all and/or read along.In this week's chapter, Pope Francis uses the parable of the Good Samaritan to shed light on exactly what criteria Christ will use to sift the weeds from the wheat: In the end, we will all be judged on whether we have "become neighb … [Read more...]

They Eat Horses, Don’t They?


Last night, I got to see a special screening of the Folger Theatre's 2008 production of Macbeth (all magic courtesy of Teller -- of Penn and Teller).  Usually, when I see Macbeth, my focus is on the titular pair, or, barring that, the witches, but, in this production, my attention and sympathies were more with the courtiers than in any other staging I've seen.For whatever reason, I was less wrapped up in the fall of Macbeth and his wife, so I kept thinking about the lives of the people in th … [Read more...]

Why is it easier to ask out strangers than friends?

going steady

In the midst of delivering a well-deserved rebuttal to extreme courtship culture, Thomas Umstattd mentions a model of dating/courting that I'd like to be able to try out.  He asked his grandmother to describe her dating experience, and she explained that her parents had only set one major restriction on her interactions with suitors: The One Dating Rule: Don’t go out with the same guy twice in a row.So if she went out for soda with Bob on Tuesday, she had to go to a movie with Bill on Thu … [Read more...]