Month: January 2008

Thursday Evil

Has anyone else noticed a dearth of gay rights and gay marriage talk this election season so far? Does anyone else think maybe the gay rights people are hoping to fly their agenda in under the radar, perhaps pursuant to an understanding–tacit or from a smoke-filled back closet–between gay rights proponents and the Democratic front-runners to keep quiet until after November 2008?

My honest opinion: I think the economy and terrorism are merely occupying more attention, but I also suspect gay rights proponents realize it’s better to keep quiet than agitate for attention during the election year.

The evil dwarf! Thieves are robbing long-distance coaches by sneaking dwarves into the luggage holds in sports bags. Once inside, they slip out from their hiding places to rifle through the belongings of unsuspecting travellers. Then they take their loot back to their hiding place and wait to be collected by another gang member when the coach reaches its destination, reports The Sun.

The evil bi-sexual! An man is accused of offering an undercover officer $5 and 90 pills of the painkiller Oxycotin to kill a woman. Robert Macklin, 35, faces one count of first-degree assault or one count of the alternative charge of conspiracy to commit first-degree murder. He was charged Wednesday in Jackson County Circuit Court in Independence. According to court documents, Macklin’s roommate called police after he repeatedly asked her to kill the Read the rest

The Wednesday Eudemon

Interesting piece at WSJ, which basically makes explicit what most people have known all along: The Clintons will say anything if it’ll help them win–true, false, or in-between. Sometimes they say true things: because it’ll help them win. Sometimes they tell downright lies: because it’ll help them win. Veracity is wholly irrelevant. They only tell the truth to the extent necessary to continue to get away with telling lies. The only test is: “Will it help us win.” And if people catch on, they merely claim everyone plays the same way.

Talk about a Hobbesian choice: A man is in hospital after he was accidentally shot by a rescuer who was trying to free him from the jaws of a crocodile. I think I’d take the bullet.

It kinda reminds me of that old joke about two buddies out hunting. One of them gets bitten on the mojo by a poisonous snake. His friend frantically calls a doctor. The doctor says, “There’s no time to get him to a hospital. You have to suck the venom out yourself or he’ll die!” The man turns to his friend, “Bummer man, the doctor says you’re gonna die.”

This is fascinating: Last July, China’s State Administration of Religious Affairs issued regulations banning reincarnations of living Buddhas, or holy monks, who failed to seek government approval, ostensibly to manipulate the centuries-old practice and legitimise future Read the rest

Tuesday Trifles

I had time for blogging this morning, but there’s not much out there. Much of the cyber print is occupied with the economic shakedown: Global markets are falling, and it looks like Wall Street will follow suit in a few hours. So, international stocks are down, and the domestics are going down. Gold has more than doubled in price over the last three years. Where does one invest? I think the mattress is looking pretty good.

Hillary and Obama go at it. It’s a pretty good clip. I think Hillary won, but she’s nasty.

Better late than never: Good review of a good book published in 2006: Look Homeward, America.

11-year-old Girl Scout earns every single merit badge possible (104 total).… Read the rest

Monday Miscellany

I treated myself to a leisurely day yesterday, in hopes of re-fueling for the office fire: three short naps, a movie with my boys (Cloverfield, not recommended, but not horrible either), practiced baseball hitting with my second son and sports fanatic, watched football, and read whenever the mood struck me. I’m now ready to go back into the hellfire. It reminds me of Joseph Pieper’s observation that leisure isn’t meant to ready us for work and that only a work-obsessed culture could think such a thing. Pieper’s right, of course, but right now, it’s unavoidable.

Good heads up from Danielle Bean: Do you own a paper shredder? Do you leave it where small children might reach? A friend of mine recently went through a horrific experience. Her 2 year old’s hand was seriously injured in a paper shredder. After surgery, he is recovering well, but his hand will never be the same, and his mom wants other parents to know: Paper shredders and children don’t mix.

I stumbled across this blog yesterday: From Burke to Kirk and Beyond. It’s pretty good.

This pair of books looks like a contemporary follow-up of Norman Cohn’s excellent The Pursuit of the Millennium. Five years ago, I would’ve ordered them in a heartbeat. With my reading time so limited at this stage of my life, I’m holding off, but my wife … Read the rest

Something for Sunday Morning

“Study as if you were to live forever. Live as if you were to die tomorrow.”

St. Isidore of Seville

That’s a great general rule, though it’s application is difficult. I can’t study and live at the same time. More than once I’ve asked myself why I’m reading “X and Z” when I could be enjoying the company of others, and I never have a wholly satisfactory answer.

It’s interesting, though: Isidore doesn’t tell us to work, which is pretty much all I do anymore (so it seems). But I know work is good for the soul, as long as it’s not motivated by a kind of money-obsessiveness that is tantamount to selling your soul to the devil. I’m not sure I’m safe on that ground, either, but that’s another story/confession.

By the way: I’m occasionally asked where I get these quotes. The answer is: It varies. Some I find online, some are from in-depth reading, and some are from quote books. But my number one source (and my source for today’s quote) is Mike Aquilina’s excellent The Way of the Fathers. … Read the rest

Looking for Blogs

I’m looking for “charitable blogs.” Not blogs written with kindness, but blogs either dedicated to promoting charitable efforts or blogs that regularly/frequently make charitable appeals. Please email me (link on left) or post a link in the combox.

If you write such a blog, don’t be modest. I want to hear about it. … Read the rest


Brews for Friday. It’s been a brutal week. I’m typing this at 6:20. I’ll attend Mass sober at 8:30, but after that, all bets are off. Like most Fridays, I’m working out of my house today, which typically means I don’t work much at all, except to respond to clients’ immediate questions and needs. Unfortunately, that won’t be the case today. I’ll probably work a chunk of the day, alternating office work with writing deadline work, all the while trying to resist the temptation to start drinking beer, knowing that I have to go to the office on Saturday too.

I would’ve drank last night. That typically removes the beer craving after a rough week, but two of my kids had basketball games last night. Nothing is better than cramming nearly 40-50 hours of work into four days, then finding out that, instead of unwinding with a beer Thursday evening as your reward, you have to drive 20 minutes in sleet to sit on an uncomfortable bleacher for a few hours, asking every three minutes, “Where did Tess go?”

Oh well, such is my lot this week and probably the next. As far as crosses go, it’s awfully small, but it still bums me out.

Brews You Can Use

A good summary of India Pale Ale. I never realized where it came from. From the intro:

Most craft beer drinkers learn early that IPA

Read the rest