1. I have a theory. After thinking about the Nashville Statement and all the virulent reaction to its being released, I think the primary issue around sexuality and same sex issues is suffering. Not being able to indulge involves suffering. Saying “no” involves suffering. And we live in a culture where suffering is to be avoided at all costs. It’s the theologically liberal version of the prosperity gospel that says, “God does not want you to suffer, so be whatever you want to be.” There are other issues to be sure, but this I have yet to hear much about.
2. Politics aside, I now prefer corn tortillas over flour.
3. Yesterday, while my students worked on an assignment, I sat outside and talked with another teacher about Blues and Jazz records. It was the polar opposite of my previous job.
4. Coffee on a clear cool September Saturday morning with nowhere to be.
5. A desire to be seen as edgy or cool will eventually lead to error.
6. I need a good fiction book. Please leave recommendations in comments.
7. A couple weeks ago, it got really hot and there was talk of climate change. Now it’s unseasonably cool in Alabama and the same thing is being said. If any argument is rigged, it’s this one.
8. Every now and then a band shows up on your radar and they are so unlikely. Unlikely to hold your attention. Unlikely to be a hit. But even so, you cannot stop listening along with many others. That’s what it was like with The War On Drugs last album, Lost In A Dream. It’s a desert-island disc. So I thought there was no way their newest offering would measure up. But it has and then some. A Deeper Understanding is the long-awaited follow up. There is an orchestration to these songs that may have as much in common with symphonies as with Dylan, who Adam Granducial sounds like and Springsteen, who he is inspired by. From beginning to end, I have no complaint.
9. Do you remember that scene in Pride and Prejudice where Jane is telling Lizzy about her joy in getting engaged. She says she wishes everyone could experience the joy she is experiencing. One of the effects of loving my job is wishing others could also experience that. It is now very hard to hear others talk of the misery they experience in their work.
10. Last weekend, the wife and I drove to the beach to be with good friends. No offense to my friends but the best part was riding down and back with her alone.
#1: Sam Allberry on youtube has a great take on this.
#3: Sounds like you are really, really enjoying this new position/job! Yea!
#7: Ditto, and Michael Crichton’s book State of Fear addresses all this so well (note: fiction recommendation)
#6: You’ve probably already read my favs: Dracula, A Tale of Two Cities, and The Scarlett Pimpernel. Here’s thee non-fiction: Three weeks with my Brother, N. Sparks, Into Thin Air, J. Krakauer. Back to Fiction: Lucifer’s Hammer (technology outdated, but still a good read), Needful Things by S. King (and The Stand), and Tinker, Tailor, Soldier, Spy by Le Carre (only one I’ve read of his). Zen and the Art of Motorcycle maintenance, Pirsig.
But, as I said, you’ve probably read them. I recommend very few books–they have to be fabulous.
#6 – Mr. Penumbra’s 24-Hour Bookstore or A Man Called Ove
Ty Cobb by Charles Leerhsen is really good and feels good on a day like today
#5. Amen! A while back I desired to be part of a Flash Mob so I could feel cool. Insufferably cool would be more appropriate.
Winter’s Tale by Mark Helprin (DO NOT judge the book by the movie).
As a gift, friend of mine bought me the book “The Baron in the Trees” by Italo Calvino. I probably wouldn’t have ever heard of this story or chosen to read it on my own, but it has a very unique plot.
Love in the Ruins by Walker Percy
How come we never hear about the “suffering” of us heterosexual single people? Gays (Christian or otherwise) don’t have an exclusive on the challenges of remaining celibate. I am twice divorced and I have such an abysmal track record in choosing men, I don’t even date, so it’s not really likely I’ll ever even meet a potential future spouse, much less have the guts to go out on the marriage limb again. I am known to have a broken picker. Do I really want to risk another failed relationship just so I can have legitimate sex again? Nope. So I “suffer.”
If you enjoy science fiction, “Voyage To Alpha Centauri” by Michael O’Brien.
#6. If you haven’t yet, try anything by Khaled Hosseini. His novels are anything but “feel good,” but they are a consistent go-to when I need to rediscover the depths of my humanity (which happens best via a good heart-breaking). Also, Chaim Potok. Particularly “The Chosen.” I resonate so much with his conflict between an attachment to the austere & ascetic, while buffeted by the need to expand into the grandiose and the dramatic – those amazing expressions of the human spirit that so often tread the razor’s edge between God’s creative mark in humanity & the corrupt spirit of the age.