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    Wednesday
    May 22, 2019

    Background: When I was the editor of Gilbert Magazine, I was responsible for the “Tremendous Trifles” column. It was occasionally hard to find a sufficient amount of interesting GKC material to fill the page, so John Peterson sent me a file full of Chesterton ancedotes. They were idiosyncratic, historical, and Chestertonian. He gave me permission to use them here. I hope y’all find them as interesting as I have over the years. Most of them have never been published.

    Chesterton Short(s)

    In April of 1924, the Queen’s Doll House was unveiled at the British Empire Exhibit, complete with crown jewels, wine cellar, a working gramophone, pianos, and a two-thousand book library. A number of authors, including Chesterton, Maugham, Housman, and others, contributed handwritten volumes, each the size of a postage stamp. [Ted Morgan, Maugham, New York, 1980, p. 274]

    British novelist Daphne du Maurier was nervous about her impending 1928 screen test. She had been suggested for the title role in the movie version of The Constant Nymph and decided that the best way to prepare for the ordeal was to play some tennis and then relax with Chesterton’s The Return of Don Quixote. [Daphne du Maurier, Myself When Young, New York, 1977, p. 114]

    In 1910, British authors John Mansfield, Walter de la Mare, John Galsworthy, Ford Maddox Ford, and Ezra Pound regularly attend a monthly dinner meeting to discuss new books. The gathering, formally named the Square Club, had been founded by G. K. Chesterton. [Letters of Ford Maddox Ford, Princeton University Press, 1965]

    In April of 1925, Chesterton completed the illustrations for Hilaire Belloc’s novel, Mr. Petre. Said Belloc, “He did eight in an hour and a half. But if I hadn’t forced him, he’d never have done them at all.” [Letters from Hilaire Belloc, London: Hollis & Carter, 1958, pp. 164-65]

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    Tuesday
    May 21, 2019

    misc-rambling-picMiscellaneous Rambling

    The farming crunch is on. Seedlings are going into the ground faster than cocktails into a Kennedy’s gut. Two dozen flower seedlings yesterday; a dozen more today, plus six tomato seedlings. More go in tomorrow. I would’ve put more in today, but it was just too cold and windy.

    And those two black cherry tomato seedlings that I forgot to harden off first? One is kaput: leaves are gone, just a stem. The other, though, is hanging tough. It looks a little worn, but for the most part, it looks pretty good.

    misc-rambling-picThe feel-good story of the week: Billionaire commencement speaker to pay off student loans of entire class. The article is worth reading; the short video worth watching.

    I’m curious how they’ll have to structure it to make it tax-deductible. Donations to individuals are not tax-deductible, no matter how motivated by philanthropic purpose. It has to be structured some other way. I have little doubt that the billionaire chose his words carefully (“my family is making a grant to pay off your student loans”) and has his tax ducks in a row.

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    Monday
    May 20, 2019

    misc-rambling-picMiscellaneous Rambling

    The new podcast is up: Episode 35: Mental Exercise, Predictive Genetics, Hook-Up Software at Ivy

    Mental Exercising: Everyone seems to agree: It’s crucial we exercise mentally, normally in the form of meditation. Meditation, even the most secular, focuses on taking yourself out of time and space. Why? Time and space are the realm of the bodily. By practicing meditation, by trying to escape time and space, is there an admission that there is, indeed, a spiritual?

    Predictive Genetics: The genetics revolution is here. It’s scary, scary stuff, and the Chinese don’t find it scary at all. The curse of Communism (which compelled Mao to wipe out thousands of years of Chinese tradition and norms) might be preparing to bring its worse harvest of all.

    Lightning Segments: Dieting and efficient drinking, Three Dog Night’s Chuck Negron at the Rose Bowl, gay Mexicans, more.

    Education News: Senior hook-up software program at the Ivies, Detroit Diocese bans Sunday athletics, the farce of a bachelor’s degree.

    misc-rambling-picGretchen Whitmer mocked the idea that her proposal to fix Michigan’s roads would require a 20-cent increase on gas (in fact, she was a condescending bitch about it), but now she is proposing a 45-cent increase. Gretchen Whitmer’s plan to fix Michigan roads: Nearly triple gas tax.

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    May 19, 2019

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    May 18, 2019

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    BYCU
    May 17, 2019

    IMG_3150Brews You Can Use

    Man, I feel like drinking today. Unfortunately, Meg has her regional track meet, which means I probably won’t get home until late tonight, and the high school frowns on people bringing alcohol into the stadium, even if I have it stored in one of those classy helmets with the plastic tube hanging down into my mouth. It’s too bad. We’re expecting a lot of company for Abbie’s shower, which is Saturday. With the great weather, it’d be a great day for porch drinking, but oh well. You can’t always get what you want.

    Heart-warming story of the year: Brewery offers free beer for info on stolen van, 42 minutes later, it was located.

    One of the coolest things I’ve seen:

    This bar has an aquarium in it. from r/mildlyinteresting

    Read the rest of this entry »

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    Thursday
    May 16, 2019

    Rambling Toward the Weekend

    Glorious weather. I spent nearly four hours at the produce site, trying to do a week’s worth of work in one afternoon. It didn’t quite work out. I got a lot of the (most excellent) Salanova lettuce planted, but otherwise, I just moved tarps around, which is pretty grueling (lots of squatting, pulling, and carrying heavy rocks). I also planted two of the highly-coveted black cherry tomato plants, only to realize later that I had pulled from the wrong tray (the tray that had just come from the basement and, therefore, hadn’t been hardened off . . . seasoned gardeners will know what a major gaffe this is . . . suffice it to say, their chances of survival are less than 20%).

    It’s not too often that I get to say, “I’m proud of the Catholic Church in America,” but I’m saying it today: The Detroit Diocese has banned athletic events on Sundays. I’m fed up with the constant encroachment of athletics into every sphere of life, especially the spiritual. Just give us one day . . . one freakin’ day . . . without practices or games. At least one bishop agrees with me:

    What follows here are details about one particular way we are committed to this “strikingly countercultural way of living.” After prayerful consultation with the presbyterate of Detroit and responding to what I believe is the call of the Holy Spirit through Synod 16, we in the Archdiocese of Detroit will cease sporting events on Sunday. This means that competitive athletic programs in the grade school and high school levels are called to no longer play games or conduct practices on the Lord’s Day. In the months ahead, we will offer a number of resources to assist families in their own practice of keeping holy the Lord’s Day.

    In shifting away from the hustle of required sporting activities on Sunday, we will reclaim this holy day and create more time for families to choose activities that prioritize time spent with each other and our Lord. As the Catholic Church, our primary role is to form disciples. Informed by Synod 16 and inspired by the Holy Spirit, we look forward to abundant blessings as we seek to abide by our God’s teaching to keep holy the Lord’s Day.

    Random Blurb from the Notebooks: And they suffered cruelly for their politically-incorrect ways. Peter, for instance, was arrested and held him for nine months in the Tullian Keep, a nasty dungeon, where the authorities had to change the guard constantly because he kept converting his keepers. They eventually crucified him, upside down. He requested the upside down part, but we don’t know the reason. It may have been practical: he’d lose consciousness and thereby reduce the suffering. It may have been an act of piety: he didn’t deem himself worthy to die just like his master.

    With the exception of John and possibly Matthew, things didn’t end much better. Their lists of death could be a reference guide to killing people in the ancient world:

    Andrew: Crucifixion
    Simon: Mutilation (sawing)
    Jude: Impalement
    Thomas: Stabbing
    James the Lesser: Stoning
    James the Greater: Decapitation
    Philip: Crucifixion
    Bartholomew: Flaying
    Matthias: Stoning

    Amazon Deals of the Day

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    Wednesday

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    Tuesday
    May 14, 2019

    misc-rambling-picMiscellaneous Rambling

    Great weather returns. Finally. Man, it’s been a brutal spring. With the exception of, maybe, five days, it’s been terrible weather.

    It’s been so cold, even my lettuce production has been slow. I, however, counted over 75 “volunteer” lettuce plants in my yard over the weekend. That’s a great benefit of using heirlooms and letting them go to seed. I wish so many didn’t seed themselves in my walkways, but otherwise, it’s a neat and effortless bonus crop every spring.

    misc-rambling-picWell, just when you didn’t think things could get more depraved at the college level: Inside the sex-crazed final weeks at America’s elite colleges. The gist: As the final weeks of college near, a software program allows seniors to input names of people they want to hook-up with before they graduate. The program then arranges the meeting. Again, depraved, but this passage really cracked me up:

    “I got so many messages from people essentially insisting that there must have been a mistake or a bug in the code because they thought someone definitely put them down.”

    That really cracked me up. “What, nobody? Why not me?”

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    Monday
    May 13, 2019

    Miscellaneous Rambling

    New episode of TWE is out: Brian Sims and Nuts on Both Sides, Fleeing California, E.F. Schumacher.

    Brian Sims: Yup, he’s a hateful nut. Yup, the Right has hateful nuts too. The thing is, the Right doesn’t have them in positions of influence or power. Moreover, the postmodernist Left is, from its core beliefs, extremist and hateful.

    Fleeing California: Dot com millionaires are fleeing California right before they realize their taxable income from their start-ups. Pretty funny . . . and a snapshot why beautiful California will wreck itself.

    Lightning Segments: Toilet wine, transgender sports leagues, two Spotify recommendations, how to drink like an adult, Michigan in May, and Copts.

    E.F. Schumacher: A Guide for the Perplexed is a great book, but it’s wrapped in the self-focused northern school of Zen instead of the southern school that rejects subject-object. The western spiritual tradition is wrapped in the northern school, but its two greatest spiritual writers, St. John of the Cross and St. Therese Lisieux, weren’t.

    Ceiling. TrastevereMan, you’d need both pretension and s*** for brains to spend money on this: Liquid Death sells water to tech bros who are too cool for alcohol

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    Saturday
    May 11, 2019

    I gotta agree. A few podcasts ago, I wondered how so many committed Catholics can watch that show. It’s a show I would love, and I tried to get into it, but I simply had to stop after the first four episodes because it was, literally, pornographic. Granted, not as hard core as, say, the mildest Ron Jeremy movie, but still pornographic:

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


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    Abbey-Roads
    Acts of the Apostasy
    After Abortion
    Aggie Catholics
    All Manner of Things
    Belinda’s Brain
    Bethune Catholic
    Betty Duffy
    Book Reviews and More
    Catholic Blogs
    Catholic Exchange
    Catholic Fire
    Charlotte Was Both
    Chesterton and Friends
    Crossroads
    Decent Films
    Digital Hairshirt
    Dyspeptic Mutterings
    EWTN
    Fathers of the Church
    First Principles
    Get Blogs
    Gilbert Magazine
    Godspy
    Happy Catholic
    Mark Shea
    Mere Comments
    Michelle Reitemeyer
    More Last Than Star
    National Catholic Register
    New Advent
    Phat Catholic
    Pillar and Fire
    Post Modern Papist
    PowerBlog
    Pro Ecclesia
    Quaffs and Quibbles
    Reasoned Audacity
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    Roman Catholic Info
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    Shadow of Diogenes
    Signs of the Times: Salvo Blog
    Some Have Hats
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    Stella Maris
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    Suicide of the West
    Summa Minutiae
    Taki
    The American Conservative
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    Victor Lams
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    With Both Hands
    Within the Garden
    Without Having Seen
    World Wide Words

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