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    Friday
    December 9, 2016

    IMG_3150Brews You Can Use

    Whew. Whatta week. Basketball games Monday and Tuesday, charity event Wednesday, office party Thursday, basketball game tonight. I’m looking forward to the weekend so I can just unwind. I doubt there’s much drinking in the cards.

    I made a big batch of Holiday Toms for the office party last night. I made them last year and, despite my warnings that it’s powerful stuff, nearly a half-dozen people could barely move the next day. The participants were more leery this year and took it easier.

    I wasn’t sure what to BYCU blog about this morning, so I went to my old standby: Modern Drunkard Magazine. It didn’t let me down. You can click here and read about how to find that perfect gift for a wino:

    Try not get hung up on tradition. It is neither necessary to wrap gifts for winos, nor is it reasonable to expect them to wait until Christmas to open it. Winos live in the here and now. If an item is of use to them, they’ll want to drink it immediately.

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    Thursday
    December 8, 2016

    From the Notebooks

    Averroes (1126-1198): Islamic Aristotelian. His relentless pursuit of natural reason in the name of Aristotle would have squashed many of the revealed truths of God. If Aristotle said it, it was true, regardless of what revealed “truths” said. The simple people should follow religion; the philosophers follow reason: it’s a good arrangement because (i) it brings social order and (ii) the truths revealed by religion and philosophy are generally similar. But when they disagree, philosophy is superior. St. Thomas tempered Averroes’ “philosophy is absolute king” teachings, but the Averroes scare and subsequent mistrust of reason/philosophy was felt after St. Thomas’ synthesis.

    Averroes taught that religion prompts people to live civilly; it gives social order to those who are not intelligent to know the highest truths (e.g. men should subdue the passions). This appears to be a Marxist “opiate of the masses” view of religion, but Averroes also accepted the truth of revelation (except in the few areas it disagreed with Aristotle).

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    Final lettuce haul of the year. I grabbed this Tuesday evening from a cold frame.

    lettuce

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    Wednesday
    December 7, 2016

    Gardening Results

    Well, I can finally say I definitely broke the $1,000 mark for produce. The estimates below are courtesy of Marie, who was instructed to be conservative and use prices you’d find at Kroger for in-season produce. The figures, in other words, don’t take into account that I grow only non-GMO, organic produce (which is far more expensive) and that a small part of the produce is grown out of season. Here are the 2016 results (with more greens still coming):

    Cherry tomatoes: $300
    Lettuce, Spinach, Kale: $250
    Strawberries: $50
    Peppers: $50
    Peas: $25
    Beans: $10
    Cucumbers: $5
    Zucchini: $5
    Winter Squash: $50
    Southern greens: $20
    Currants: $50
    Raspberries: $300
    ASparagus: $30
    Pumpkins: $5
    Assorted greens: $5
    Blackberries: $10

    I probably bought about $500 worth of seeds, soil amendments, and gardening tools, so my “net” for the year is probably around $700, which isn’t much, but it’s enough. I could, whenever necessary, pull back on all expenditures and plant with zero money spent (given my stock of seeds, fertilizers, soil, and equipment), which was the goal all along when I started gardening in 2009. At this point, I’m just glad to be producing healthy produce for my family and, quite frankly, I enjoy the hobby.

    With my ongoing greens, stash of winter squash, frozen currants and greens, and my sprouting operation that I use in January, February and March, I’m also providing non-gmo produce year round, which was also one of my original goals.

    So, overall, I’m happy with this job that pays less than minimum wage.

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    Tuesday
    December 6, 2016

    Miscellaneous Rambling

    Ceiling. TrastevereCleveland.com, which identifies itself as a “partner” of The Plain Dealer, posted this soul-searching editorial last week: “Redesigning politics coverage after missing the big story of 2016.” It’s significant and pathetic at the same time. The Vice President of Content basically asks, “How could we have been so wrong about how the election would turn out?” The answer is, “Precisely because you sit in the leftist echo chamber that is the American press. You accuse the right-wing of Drudging in their echo chambers and never realized you sit in a much bigger, and suffocating, one.” But no worries, I don’t expect any newspaper to “get it,” though I do appreciate the measure of mea culpa found in this piece.

    Ceiling. TrastevereSpeaking of which, did everyone see this piece of NBC trash late last month?

    Priebus, on NBC News, was asked by “Meet the Press” moderator Chuck Todd if he could “rule out a registry for Muslims.” . . . Priebus . . . said, “Look, I’m not going to rule out anything. But we are not going to have a registry based on religion.”

    So what did NBC tweet? “Can you rule out a registry for Muslims?” Priebus: “I’m not going to rule out anything.”

    Unbelievable. And Cleveland dot com, who probably would’ve echoed that without thinking a month ago, wonders how they got everything so wrong.

    Ceiling. TrastevereSpeaking of the election, if you want to understand the electorcal college a little better, check out this Al Kresta episode at iTunes. Click on November 23rd, second hour. Go to minute ten (where the discussion begins). You can also listen to the episode here, without iTunes.

    Ceiling. TrastevereIf you, like me, were a big fan of “The Far Side,” you might enjoy this piece: “11 Twisted Facts About ‘The Far Side.‘”

    Amazon Deals of the Day

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    Monday
    December 5, 2016

    misc-rambling-picMiscellaneous Rambling

    Ceiling. TrastevereFar out: Italy joins the United States and Britain in rejecting the centralizing efforts of the elites. The Popularism tide continues to roll. In a past life, such a thing would’ve made me nervous, but in light of the monstrosities that are DC and the EU, any stab at central authority is a good stab.

    Ceiling. TrastevereWinter arrives this week. The Old Farmer’s Almanac says this could be the start of a brutal three (or four) months. It’s supposedly predicting that winter will start late and end late . . . and winter itself will be harsher and more snowy than normal.

    Ceiling. TrastevereSo I hauled in all my exposed greens yesterday: large batches of kale and spinach that aren’t protected by a cold frame. I also hauled in a bit of lettuce that didn’t die during recent cold days, plus the lettuce in the cold frames (so I could make room for my pots of spinach that I hope will make it over winter). The batch of greens should last us at least a week, taking us to December 12th. At that point, I’ll start pulling spinach from the cold frames. I think I have enough to get us to Christmas, which is my annual goal.

    Ceiling. TrastevereThanks, USA Today. I was pretty much over the officiating scandal in the UM-OSU game, but now it turns out the referees were, indeed, incompetent and biased in favor of OSU. It’s incomprehensible how the Big Ten could’ve allowed this to happen in the biggest game of the year. Given OSU football’s checkered ethical history (read: “Jim Tressel”), you wonder if they’re pulling stunts with Big Ten officers.

    Ceiling. TrastevereIn case you missed it on your religious site browsing, The Daily Mirror ran this neat story: Jesus Christ’s tomb opened for first time in 500 years to reveal miraculous discovery inside. The Daily Mirror is a British tabloid, and a left-leaning one at that, so I wouldn’t expect much religious insight, but I think they should’ve noted the logical flaw in this observation: “Without bones or artefacts we’ll never be able to say for sure this was the tomb of Christ.”

    Ceiling. TrastevereI think I’ve concluded that TDE’s “Miscellaneous Ramblings” columns are pretty rigorous, intellectually, from a digital prose perspective. I’d estimate that each paragraph contains, on average, about four sentences. As far as online reading goes, such a paragraph structure is like a post-graduate reading level. That Mirror article, for instance, doesn’t contain a single paragraph that has more than one sentence.

    Ceiling. Trastevere“And what,” you might be asking, “is with the new Miscellaneous Rambling photo?” (Or, you might now be thinking, “I hadn’t noticed a thing.”) Well, it’s a picture from the British National Gallery I took last month.

    cognoscenti

    Amazon Deals of the Day

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    December 4, 2016

    Please patronize TDE this holiday season by accessing Amazon through the widget in the upper-right corner. Thanks!

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    Sunday

    penn-state

    Congratulations, Penn State! Big Ten Champs!

    And still the ugliest institution in America, a school that, out of common decency, should have disbanded its football program after the Sandusky scandal . . . the cover-up, the facilitation, the student riots when they thought their precious football program might suffer.

    Heck, I’m a little bit ashamed that I graduated from a school in the Big Ten.

    But at least I’m not the only person bothered by Pedophile State University getting back on top, so to speak. And he writes from Sports Illustrated, which I would’ve thought kinda defended pedophilia, especially when it’s homosexually-driven like Sandusky’s:

    For reasons too familiar to elaborate here, Penn State and its football team have spent the last five years under a deep, dark cloud of its own manufacture. Jerry Sandusky was a sexual predator and, as institutions, Penn State and Penn State football enabled him in his crimes. That is the verdict of history and it is not disputable, despite the best efforts of one of America’s most fervent fan bases to induce historical amnesia and declare itself, with consummate hubris, the real victim in the situation. . . . So, nothing here about “healing.” Until all the victims heal, I don’t care if the institution does. There will be nothing here about “overcoming adversity” or “getting beyond the tragedy.” Until the victims do either one, I don’t care if the institution does.

    Amen.

    That was first article I clicked on this morning. I wondered, “Are other sports writers blasting away at Ped State?” Unfortunately, no, but the USA Today writer this morning has a biting sense of humor, a highly active subconscious, or absolutely zero ability to detect irony:

    Sure, some of Penn State’s wins have been of the cover-your-eyes-and-hide-the-children variety, but they have found ways to get it done . . .

    With an eye on overtime, Wisconsin marched to the Penn State 24 and needed 1 yard for a first down. One measly yard. That’s child’s play for the Badgers . . .

    And given that their “consolation prize” would be the Rose Bowl, Penn State really can’t lose. Butt the playoff system can.

    I’m choosing “A,” biting sense of humor . . . and I like it.

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    Saturday
    December 3, 2016

    jpii

    I’ve been reading (too much) about the dubia controversy. It seems Carl Olson’s recent essay about the whole affair offers the best summary and analysis. It’s worth a read: “The Four Cardinals and the Encyclical in the Room.”

    After reading it, I’m left to wonder, “Is Pope Francis, the model of humility, trying to wipe out John Paul the Great’s legacy?”

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    Friday
    December 2, 2016

    Great drinking lore, courtesy of the British Museum:

    drinking-mug

    drinking-mug-explanation

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    Conan
    December 1, 2016

    In the next few years, the federal government is planning to forgive $100 billion of student debt. So, congratulations to six USC grads.

    Two Connecticut residents stole over $1,000 worth of candles from the Yankee Candle Village. The suspects are being described as white.

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    Trump and Mitt Romney were spotted having dinner here New York last night, and everyone’s talking about Romney’s expression. It got even worse when the spaghetti came and Trump said, “Ever see ‘Lady and the Tramp’?” Fallon 

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    Enter Amazon here, buy something, and get me a kickback.


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    Book Reviews and More
    Catholic Blogs
    Catholic Exchange
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    Charlotte Was Both
    Chesterton and Friends
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    Digital Hairshirt
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    EWTN
    Fathers of the Church
    First Principles
    Get Blogs
    Gilbert Magazine
    Godspy
    Happy Catholic
    Mark Shea
    Mere Comments
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    More Last Than Star
    National Catholic Register
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    Phat Catholic
    Pillar and Fire
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    PowerBlog
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    Quaffs and Quibbles
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