Month: September 2009

GKC and Booker T. Sightings, Sundry

streetsign.jpgBooker T. Washington was an Uncle Tom? Not according to a new biography out of Harvard University Press.

One of the ACORN antagonists is a Chesterton fan, according to the NYT.

Mr. O’Keefe said he considers the British writer G. K. Chesterton his “intellectual backbone” and called himself a “progressive radical,” not a conservative, because he wants to change things, “not conserve them.” But his pro-market, anti-government views, as he described them, sounded like mainstream conservatism.

No laughing allowed.Eleven humorless Saturday Night Live hosts. Megan Fox might make it 12.

How has the recession affected you?A broad survey of Americans has provided striking measures of the recession’s effect on life at home and at work: People are now stuck in traffic longer, less apt to move away and more inclined to put off marriage and buying a house.

Ready for government healthcare? ABC’s John Stossel isn’t:

Read the rest

Monday Moanin’

Jane AustenMonsters in Austen

“It is a truth universally acknowledged, that a single man in possession of a good fortune, must be in want of a wife.” It’s one of the most-famous opening lines in English literature. But I might like this more: “It is a truth universally acknowledged that a zombie in possession of brains must be in want of more brains.”

That, anyway, is how Pride and Prejudice and Zombies opens. I’m not sure whether to vomit or to buy it. I might do both. I guess it was a hit last year, and is now followed with Sense and Sensibility and Sea Monsters. New York Magazine does the review:

It’s hard to say, in the end, if this is an homage, an exploitation, a deconstruction, or just a 300-page parlor trick. Although the sea-monster subplots, considered independently, rarely rise above pulp clichés, the book’s best moments do achieve a kind of bizarro symbiosis. The monsters make Austen’s abstract threats ridiculously concrete (Elinor is nearly killed by the notorious Devonshire Fang-Beast at the same moment she learns that her love is secretly engaged to someone else), and Austen, in turn, dignifies the monsters: They serve as gargoyles emphasizing the immaculate balance of her original story’s structure.

Autobiographical Corner

“[T]he will of God is now manifesting itself in those circumstances which are the duty of the present moment. It is the fulfilling of … Read the rest

Something for Sunday Morning

Cross.jpg“We can find all that is necessary in the present moment. We need not worry about whether to pray or be silent, whether to withdraw into retreat or mix with people, to read or write, to meditate or make our minds a receptive blank, to shun or seek out books on spirituality. Nor do poverty or riches, sickness or health, life or death matter in the least. What does matter is what each moment produces by the will of God. We must strip ourselves naked, renounce all desire for created things, and retain nothing of ourselves or for ourselves, so that we can be wholly submissive to God’s will and so delight him. Our only satisfaction must be to live in the present moment as if there were nothing to expect beyond it.” Jean-Pierre de Caussade. … Read the rest

Brews You Can Use

Beer Valley

Snake in a Beer

A friend dropped off a copy of Jackson, Wyoming’s alternative newspaper: JH Weekly. The cover story: Making Suds at the Base of the Tetons. It’s a nicely-crafted (heh, heh) piece, and they write highly of Snake River Brewery, which–from what I could gather when I was there last summer–is the town’s favorite son.

When we travel, we like to try different places, but we liked that place so much, we went back two nights in a row. Unfortunately, I couldn’t drink any of the beer due to some medical problems, but Marie tried a couple and loved ’em. I’ll have to see if I can order them locally somehow, though the article implied that they’re trying to keep their brewing volume at lower levels.

Withering Hops

Alright, we gotta do something now. Bring on Cap and Trade, make Michael Moore the climate czar, give Al Gore the crown: Climatologist Martin Mozny of the Czech Hydrometeorological Institute and colleagues say that the quality of Saaz hops – the delicate variety used to make pilsner lager – has been decreasing in recent years. They say the culprit is climate change in the form of increased air temperature. Global warming is hurting beer? This ****’s not funny anymore.

Cong Beer

Next time you’re quaffing cold Commie brews with your friends, you can wax erudite: After chasing off cheap Chinese beer competitors a Read the rest

From iPhone surfing

“Sometime in the mid- to late-1980s, a letter-writer opined in the pages of the Washington Post that President Reagan insulted women whenever he opened his broadcast speeches with the words “My fellow Americans.” This letter-writer proposed that Presidents instead use “My associate Americans.””… Read the rest

From the Notebooks

belloc2Some Belloc

All from The Path to Rome:

“[I]f there is difficulty it is in the whole launching of a thing, in the first ten pages of a book, or the first half-hour of listening to a sermon, or the first mile of a walk.”

“I will tell you this much; it is the moment (not the year or the month, mind you, nor even the hour, but the very second) when a man is grown up, when he sees things as they are (that is, backwards), and feels solidly himself. Do I make myself clear? No matter, it is the Shock of Maturity, and that must suffice for you.”

“[W]hat men love is never money itself but their own way.”

“It is quite clear that the body must be recognized and the soul kept in its place, since a little refreshing food and drink can do so much to make a man.”

“[S]o I offered them a pull of my wine, which, to my great joy, they refused, and we parted courteously.”

“Those great men Marlowe and Jonson, Shakespeare, and Spenser before him, drank beer at rising, and tamed it with a little bread.”

The “best of all Christian associations [is] a large village.”

While reading Tacitus, Belloc says he found “this excellent truth, that barbarians build their houses separate, but civilized men together.”

“I notice that those whom the devil has made … Read the rest