Month: March 2019



A TDE reader sends along perhaps the best Lenten BYCU piece of all time: Man does 46-day beer fast.

When I saw the title, I thought it was going to be about a guy who gave up beer for Lent. Big deal.

But no, the opposite: He gave up everything besides beer for Lent. (Beer and water only.)

He heard of monks doing it with a thing called “liquid bread,” so he gave it a shot:

According to legend, the 17th century monks of Neudeck ob der Au outside Munich, Germany, developed the rich-and-malty beer to sustain them during Lenten fasts, the traditional 46-day lead-up to Easter.

Unfiltered, the bold elixir was nicknamed “liquid bread” and is packed with carbohydrates, calories and vitamins.

With poor documentation available on the specifics of their fasts, I decided that the only way to know if the story was true would be to test the beer myself. I joined forces with Eric Sorensen, the head brewer at Rock Bottom Restaurant and Brewery in West Des Moines, Iowa, to brew a commercial release of one of my recipes, Illuminator Doppelbock.

The results? Fabulous. On top of losing 22 pounds, he gained a strong dose of mental and spiritual clarity that we could all use:

At the beginning of my fast, I felt hunger for the first two days. My body then switched gears, replaced hunger with focus, and I found myself operating in a tunnel of clarity unlike anything I’d ever experienced. . . .

The experience proved that the origin story of monks fasting on doppelbock was not only possible, but probable. It left me with the realization that the monks must have been keenly aware of their own humanity and imperfections. In order to refocus on God, they engaged this annual

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Miscellaneous Rambling

Ceiling. TrastevereGood to hear: MSNBC’s ratings have taken it in the shorts since its sham fear-mongering has been exposed: Maddow, who has consistently vied for the first or second top-rated cable news program, was sixth on Monday evening, down almost 500,000 total viewers from the previous Monday, as was MSNBC’s second top-rated program in primetime, The Last Word With Lawrence O’Donnell. Link.

Ceiling. TrastevereTrump coming to my backyard today for his first major public appearance of the post-Mueller era. Link.

Ceiling. TrastevereI have a guilty admiration for this new superhero:

True. It’s a simple yet enjoyable life. from r/funny

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Midweek Rambling

The New York Times opens up a promising op-ed feature: religious philosophy wars. It runs a wholly one-sided op-ed that ridicules the idea of a God that philosophy can reason to. I assume the Grey Hag will give equal time to a learned response from a Catholic philosopher, which will then spur more debate/discussion. It’s a good thing.

Of course, if it doesn’t give equal time to a qualified Catholic philosopher, the op-ed is an outrage.

What We Do in the Shadows is a hilarious movie from 2014. It is now a TV series. I’m gonna check it out. First episode is tonight at 10:00.

Slow blogging winds blowing ahead.

Jack the Ripper continues to fascinate . . . and now they think they got him. They think it’s a 23-year-old Pole. Link.

The Green New Deal didn’t get a single vote of support in the Senate. Link. Funny aside: Trump apparently told one senator, “make sure you don’t kill it too much because I want to run against it” in 2020.… Read the rest


misc-rambling-picMiscellaneous Rambling

Man, for some reason, that Trump dance video really cracked me up yesterday. I’m a little embarrassed to admit it, but I think I watched it ten times.

misc-rambling-picMatt Taibbi, far from a conservative the last I checked, breaks down the farce that was RussiaGate. It’s official: Russiagate is this generation’s WMD. Possibly the best piece I’ve read, especially since it comes from a Rolling Stone guy.

misc-rambling-picFrom the Notebooks:

Robert Nisbet (1913-1996) was a conservative sociologist whose lifework resolved around one grand theme: the importance of communities, those “human groups that spring up to fill perennial human needs and solve problems,” such as families, voluntary associations, and churches.

People need community. Community, Nisbet once wrote, “springs from some of the powerful needs of human nature.” If communities are attacked or undermined, individuals will be harmed.

This firmly-held belief animated one of the main “sub-themes” of Nisbet’s work: To the extent the centralized state becomes more powerful, communities atrophy.

This, of course, makes sense, if we keep in mind Nisbet’s primary definition of “community” as groups that solve problems. To the extent the omnicompetent state attempts to solve our problems, the role of community diminishes, weakens and eventually disappears—to the detriment of individuals. This has been the readily-discernible path in America’s recent past, as the national government’s attempt to solve problems on a national scale has crippled families (e.g., by providing economic incentives for women not to marry) and charitable organizations (e.g., by national-scale welfare programs replacing the need for local organizations and churches to care for their poor).

The rise of the powerful state has resulted in harm to individuals, Nisbet believed. He said the contemporary individual is “metaphysically beleaguered.” He said modern man is alienated. Instead of being connected to others and higher realities through … Read the rest


Miscellaneous Rambling

New TWE episode posted this weekend: Episode 27: Postmodernism and a Soviet Philosopher, Postmodernism and Brahman, Stylites. Click the link to listen, or go to Stitcher, iTunes, etc. It’s also posted below in a Youtube format.

Postmodernism: That’s a pretty big umbrella of thought. Please excuse my broad—sloppy—use of the term.

Standpoint Epistemology: You know why whites can’t think like blacks, and men like women, or cis like queers? Because a Soviet philosopher told them it’s so.

Act = Brahman: Think hard about the verb “act.” It might be a word that Derrida himself couldn’t deconstruct. I’m not sure it’s defined by reference to something else. It might stand on its own, like the Hindu/Buddhist Brahman. I flush it out here.

Praxeology: That Brahman stuff is my attempt to slip some von Misesian thought into the postmoderns.

Lightning Segments: Mindfulness, drinking cities, essential oils, more.

The Stylites: Living on pillars in the late Roman Empire.

Ceiling. TrastevereI’ve been trying to read more lefty publications lately. Slate is one of my favorites. The prose is superb . . . and the ideas so firmly leftist, I find it enlightening. Exhibit A: “Joe Rogan’s Galaxy Brain: How the former Fear Factor host’s podcast became an essential platform for “freethinkers” who hate the left.” It’s a must-read if you like Joe Rogan (I kind of like him, but he’s increasingly a must-hear). The article notified me that Rogan interviewed “the ‘Sokal Squared’ academic hoaxsters Peter Boghossian and James Lindsay.” I was like, “No way! I love that story,” so I listened to it this weekend. It’s episode 1191 (October 30, 2018). Highly recommended. I plan on incorporating it into my podcast, but I’m not sure how yet. I’ll probably use some script from the fat-shaming discussion that starts at … Read the rest