Monthly Archives: May 2006

"This is your penance for making The Terminal"

A funny trailer for the DaVinci Code — German, with subtitles that really translate what’s going on.

Via the Movie Blog.

Don’t tell Jerry*, but

I think it’s pretty cool to be doing research in the school library and to inadvertently cross paths with a Man Booker prize winner.

Do you think writing abilities are transferrable by brief walk-by contact?

*Jerry has had a few run-ins with said author — which are amusing to read about, but not so much fun to experience firsthand.

The house was quiet and the world was calm.
The reader became the book; and summer night

Was like the conscious being of the book.
The house was quiet and the world was calm.

The words were spoken as if there was no book,
Except that the reader leaned above the page,

Wanted to lean, wanted much to be
The scholar to whom his book is true, to whom

The summer night is like a perfection of thought.
The house was quiet because it had to be.

The quiet was part of the meaning, part of the mind:
The access of perfection to the page.

And the world was calm. The truth in a calm world,
In which there is no other meaning, itself

Is calm, itself is summer and night, itself
Is the reader leaning late and reading there.

Wallace Stevens

Happy 3000th post!

Main Entry: despondent
Definition: depressed
Synonyms: blue*, blue funk, bummed out, cast down, dejected, despairing, disconsolate, discouraged, disheartened, dispirited, doleful, down, downcast, downhearted, forlorn, gloomy, glum, grieving, hopeless, in despair, low, low-spirited, melancholy, miserable, morose, mourning, sad, shot down*, sorrowful, woebegone, wretched

I just got back my last chapter of analysis — the 25-pager on Fantasy Theme analysis.

Prognosis: Negative.

I don’t think I’ll be able to use this type of analysis on Revolve. I thought it would work, but looking over these comments by my supervisor — I’m having SERIOUS second thoughts.

So, 25 pages down the drain. It looks like I need to scrap this chapter and work much of my ethical criticism I had planned for the conclusion into a chapter of analysis. Sigh.

This is the time where I’m seriously kicking myself for not “getting motivated” a hell of a lot sooner. 18 days.

UPDATE: Well, I’m turning in a whack of pages (Chapters 2-4) tomorrow — so that’s encouraging. I’m just not so keen on starting ALL over again on Chapter 5. Ah well, maybe I’ll look back on these misadventures one day and laugh. Maybe.

Happy Memorial Day!

You can now wear white without any stylistic qualms.

While I’d love to claim today as a holiday and the first “official” day of summer, my Saskatchewan reality is that it’s a rainy, cold (7 degrees Celsius/44 Fahrenheit) Monday — and I have a TON of work to do. This morning I’m off to run errands. I finally got my GA police fingerprint cards, so I’m off to be fingerprinted for the fourth time in a year (look, Ma, I’m not a criminal!).

And then, it’s off to my little fluorescent piece of cubicle heaven, to finish another draft of another chapter.

In the meantime, here are a bunch of stories that are just begging to be blogged about. Read ‘em and weep leave me your comments below.

  • What are the Election 2006 priorities of the Senate Republicans? Well, according to their ethically-suspect leader, flag-burning and prevention of gay marriage. Because those are the most pressing issues facing American citizens today — not crazy-high gas prices, a lack of renewable resources, a quamire of a war in Iraq, a lack of health-care insurance for many Americans, a minimum wage that hasn’t been raised in over a decade, a world that currently hates our guts . . .
  • Rhythm method criticized as a killer of embryos — If you don’t believe in using contraceptives, chances are you’ve gone by the old standby of the rhythm method. But:
    As many as 50% of conceptions may not survive long enough even to disrupt menstruation, [Luc] Bovens says. It is reasonable to assume then, he adds, that embryos created from sperm that has been sitting for days within the female’s reproductive tract before ovulation may be disadvantaged.

    The situation is similar, he suggests, for eggs that have been waiting around for sperm to arrive. These are the only two likely scenarios where fertilisation might occur using the rhythm method, he points out.

    These embryos may then face a less-than-ideal uterine lining, he points out, since the uterus is not as receptive outside of the most fertile period.

    Bovens calculates that, if the rhythm method is 90% effective, and if conceptions outside the fertile period are about twice as likely to fail as to survive, then “millions of rhythm method cycles per year globally depend for their success on massive embryonic death.” link

    Which is one reason why the Pill *should* be embraced by people concerned about embryonic deaths — the Pill’s MAIN function is to prevent ovulation from occurring, and hence, stop any fertilizing from occurring in the first place.

    Then again, opposition to the contraceptives usually isn’t as nuanced as the argument above — and really springs from a desire to only view sex as a procreation method.

  • and finally, a few of you sent me this story — with hopes of giving me some “perspective.” Heroic Computer Dies To Save World From Master’s Thesis.
    A courageous young notebook computer committed a fatal, self-inflicted execution error late Sunday night, selflessly giving its own life so that professors, academic advisors, classmates, and even future generations of college students would never have to read Jill Samoskevich’s 227-page master’s thesis, sources close to the Brandeis University English graduate student reported Monday.

Pope asks God why he ‘tolerated’ the Holocaust

OSWIECIM, Poland – Pope Benedict XVI visited the Auschwitz concentration camp as “a son of the German people” Sunday and asked God why he remained silent during the “unprecedented mass crimes” of the Holocaust.

Benedict walked along the row of plaques at the Auschwitz-Birkenau complex’s memorial, one in the language of each nationality whose members died there. As he stopped to pray, a light rain stopped and a brilliant rainbow appeared over the camp.

“To speak in this place of horror, in this place where unprecedented mass crimes were committed against God and man, is almost impossible and it is particularly difficult and troubling for a Christian, for a pope from Germany,” he said later.

“In a place like this, words fail; in the end, there can be only a dread silence, a silence which itself is a heartfelt cry to God: Why, Lord, did you remain silent? How could you tolerate all this?”


Is anyone else bothered by this? Um, I don’t think “God” was the one who tolerated the Holocaust — I think it was the choices of the Third Reich and its supporters (along with other complicit forces involved). Wasn’t good ol’ Benedict a member of Hitler’s Youth?

And now he’s asking God why he was silent during this horrible time of tribulation?

I know that hindsight is 20/20, but this is ridiculous. The Holocaust did not occur because God was silent, it happened because hatred took over and motivated one culture to wipe out another.

I’m really tired of people blaming God, the devil, or other forms of the supernatural when the accountability lies with US (us as in you and me, not as in my home country).

My personal favorite is when people try to get out of personal responsibility by blaming the forces of “spiritual warfare” at work in their lives. No, Satan isn’t attacking you — you are just feeling the repercussions of some bad choices you made.


Brownies in the City

Brownies in the City, originally uploaded by becky b..

Yesterday we took the grrrls out for an all-day field trip into Saskatoon (who recently turned 100 years old!).

I’m still recovering, rest wise, from all that we did!

More pictures here.