Mondays feel like Tuesdays when you start your week on Sunday. But Fridays always feel like Fridays. Nice how that works out.
Hey, that scans. I’m a poet, and have hitherto been ignorant of the fact – yet my pedal extremities reveal the fact. Longfellow.
That was something said in our family whenever someone made an rhyme by mistake. I’m a poet and I don’t know it but my feet show it. Longfellow. Somehow the length of the body applied to an attribute demonstrated by the feet. I’d bring this up to (G)Nat, passing along the family doggeral, but it annoyed me then and it annoys me now. I’m a poet and I don’t know it. Highly unlikely. It’s probable that one presumes one is a poet and is unaware of one’s lack of ablities. So that one dies with me.
“’I see,’ said the blind man, and he picked up his hammer and saw” – now, that one I manage to use once a month.
I’d use it more often, if I wrote daily about the news.
I was in the car this afternoon, listening to a debate about Ann Coulter, and her remarks about Jews needing the “perfection” of Christianity. Never quite thought of her as a religious sort, frankly, and I am not interested in her thoughts on theology. The comments weren’t remarkable, but the subsequent tempest was. Religion in a diverse society is a masked ball without midnight. It’s agreed that the masks stay on.
Should they slip off, you learn things.
Look: many people who are serious about their religious beliefs are quite convinced of the superiority of their creed; it’s not as if the Pope sits up nights wondering whether Buddha might be on to something. I say “many” instead of “most” because there are millions of cultural Christians in the country who have a casual sense of creedal superiority which they don’t indulge, examine, or display. If they do, they err on the side of the Shrug: to each his own. But you can’t say you have the One True Path and believe that other paths lead to the same destination. There are people who believe that everyone can graze from the Old Country Buffet of Theology and still assemble in the common afterlife of the parking lot, and nevermind the details; they’re mostly liberal Christians in the West who regard tolerance and coexistence as values more important than witnessing and converting. If nothing else, they prefer to lead by example. There are others of all faiths whose indifference to the beliefs of others has less to do with a commitment to religious pluralism and tolerance than a disinterest in the paths others take. In the abstract, they hope you’ll come around. If not, well, that’s how it plays out.
Every faith that builds on another regards itself as the last word. So Coulter’s remarks weren’t unusual; they were just impolitic. We don’t get into the details, because the details breed friction.
For some, however, anyone who ventures into the thicket of theological disputations is equally suspect, which led a guest on the Medved show today to utter a stupendously idiotic judgment: she found Ann Coulter’s remarks as offensive as a jihadi’s snuff video of Daniel Pearl’s execution. It was an interesting remark, because you could sense the parameters of her intellectual terrain. There is a big comfy warm spot in which the smart and decent people reside, and beyond that there be dragons. If these people believe in the warm mealy notions that hold all cultures equal, and regard the assertion of a culture’s values as the equivalent of passing gas in the museum, you’ll naturally get this. If such a mild assertion merits a visit from the police, then any frank expressions of doctrine will earn the same, until sermons turn into room-temp gruel. But I suspect the efforts of the police will be selectively applied, in order to assure all that the hitherto dominant culture has assumed the supine position the times require.
Multiculturalism is simply the state between two different cultures.
After work I took my restorative nap – sweet, delicious oblivion – while (G)Nat read a book in the other room. When I woke we discussed the plot, and played Spider Wars. For many years I have attempted to defeat her spiders with mine. My hand crawls along and proclaims its powers – lightning, steel, invisible, etc. – but it is always defeated by her spider-hand powers, which manage to trump mine through the pronouncement of superior abilities. That’s when I bring the right-hand spider, aka the Brother, into the fray. Today she countered with her tiny stuffed Pikachu – God help us if ever we lose him – and I was vanquished again. Hearing the commotion, old Jasper Dog clicked up the steps and whined: why are you doing this when you could be feeding me? I helped him up on the bed, and he just barked at me. Not here. Downstairs. Food now, dammit. Cranky old dog. But he dropped on the bed and sighed, and (G)Nat gave me a hug and snuggled in close. It was a dank October evening outside, the sun having given up the game an hour before. The room was warm; the rest of the night remained. Life was perfect.
Stlll is, but that moment was the highlight of the day.
After supper I went to Best Buy to return the coffee pot. Got a new one. They had two boxes on the shelf last weekend; both were dented. I bought the less-dented one. Today I got the most-dented one. The security dude by the door had been bio-engineered to read barcodes, because he let me walk out with a box after a cursory glace at my receipt. Impressive. Then I went to the video store to look for “28 Weeks Later: Not As Good,” but they didn’t have any copies. Talked movies with the clerks for a while; the lads have strong opinions and encyclopedic tastes, and were tired of Quentin Tarantino. There is hope. Went home, wrote a piece for the Smartflix blog – should be up Thursday – and then this. Now other stuff.
But a little less than usual. It’s official; this is another employer-enforced slacker week. I’m up against the vacation-day overload again, much to my surprise, and if I don’t take one off this week I lose one. So I’m taking off two, spread over three days - meaning half as many posts on buzz.mn. Why not just take the time off, period? Because I know how disappointed I get when the sites I visit go dark for an afternoon, let alone a day. As it turns out, tomorrow is a shooting day, and my wife has Bunco in the evening – this henfest is hosted at Jasperwood, which means I’ll be on the town with (G)Nat for the early evening, and spend the later evening keeping her from getting underfoot – the amount of time I’ll have in front of the machinery will be low. But there will be something here every day, and something there every day. A video on Wednesday, the Diner on Friday, an extra site bonus tomorrow, and some cool old Marx Brothers newspaper ads from their Minneapolis appearance on buzz tomorrow.
See you there!