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manifesto-alicious (über-geekdom follows)

30 May 2005
Apart from Item 4, a good list. It would seem to me that if they took Item 5 seriously, Item 4 wouldn't be on the list... but who needs logic?

I was rather depressed to find out that the PS3 is going to cost $465. You've got to be shitting me. I know it will go down. I know that the PS2 and original XBox both came out at around $300 and the PS2 dropped to around $200. But, damn son, that's more than a 2o GB iPod.

I had been holding off on replacing my PS2 that met an unfortunate demise in an ill planned act of kindness on my part. Without launching into that tale of techno-woe, the moral of the story is: never lend electronics to your friends' children. Anywho, the plan was to just hold out and upgrade to the PS3. Yeah, not so much. Hell, if the XBox 360 is appreciably less expensive, I may even suspend my deep seated loathing of all things Micro$oft and sell out. (Steve, please don't hate me.) Then again, I've made it almost a year without platform gaming... Of course, the corollary speculation is, does a PSP really count as a platform?

As much fun as I make of my esteemed house mate for her basketball enthusiasm, I shudder to think at the absolute hell she'd give me if she ever saw me in front of a game console.


27 May 2005
Good news. Good news indeed.

And it even happened in New Jersey.

how i long for a grapefruit

(Extra credit if you get the reference.)

Today, we see why actors ought not be governors: "Governor Digs Fixing Potholes: San Jose Crews Destroy Part of Road for Staged Event."

Um, what?!

Then again, I always thought this was the most accurate reflection of that gubernatorial race in the first place...

got stick?

26 May 2005
Ladies and gentlemen, I give you a dead horse:

A possible prequel to the prequel.

Shallow web rumor with minimal credibility? Probably.

Amusing nonetheless? Sure.

Would I shell out for the boxed set should ever such a thing come into existence and manage not to suck epicly? You bet your bippy.

As long as Jar Jar never becomes a Jedi.

saints, scholarship and spirituality

25 May 2005

Happy St Bede the Venerable's day!

Bede is a far more familiar figure in Britain than in the United States, largely because his Ecclesiastical History of the English People is standard fare for British school children. That said, we are indebted to this good monk for a great deal of what we know about the early British Church. His Ecclesiastical History remains the primary source for the Christian history of England from the Augustinian mission to Canterbury to about 731 AD. His hagiography is a lot of fun, and I've always taken a perverse and decidedly puerile delight in some of the names of the folk he writes about (e.g. Sexwulf, Egbert, and Drychthelme, but mostly Sexwulf).

Speaking of Anno Domini, Bede the Venerable also gets credit for that handy-dandy dating system. He first used the phrase Anno Domini in his work, The Greater Chronicle. While this chronological standard is perhaps a bit problematic for the world of ecumenics today, setting the standard of dating for Christendom ain't so bad for a chap who entered the monastery at age 7 and never really left.

I should also like to point out a rather fun connection between Bede and one of my other absolute favorite Anglo-Saxon church-persons, Hild of Whitby (or more properly, Hild of Streanæshalch, the appellation 'Whitby' didn't come until after the Viking sack of the abbey and it's subsequent rebuilding in the 11th Century). Among her other notable accomplishments, Hild was responsible for training a number of bishops in the school at her double monastery (a monastery that housed both men and women; these were always ruled by abbesses and never by abbots). Among the bishops trained by Hild (see The Ecclesiastical History IV.23), was the abbot-bishop who founded Jarrow and would be Bede's superior and teacher.

We also are indebted to Bede for introducing us to St Cædmon (pronounced Cad-mon, with a real nasal, Jersey accent on the "a") by the preservation of a few lines of Cædmon's Hymn in the Ecclesiastical History IV.24. While it was originally recorded by Bede in Latin, someone very promptly added the Old English original in the margin of the text:
Nu sculon herigean heofonrices weard,
meotodes meahte and his modgeþanc,
weorc wuldorfæder swa he wundra gehwæs,
ece drihten, or onstealde.

He ærest sceop eorðan bearnum
heofon on hrofe, halig scyppend;
þa middangeard moncynnes weard,
ece drihten, æfter teode
firum foldan frea ælmihtig.
Bede's Latin paraphrase:
Nunc laudare debemus auctorem regnis caelestis
potentiam Creatoris, et consilium illius
facta Patris gloriae: quomodo ille,
cum sit aeternus Deus omnium miraculorum auctor exsitit;
qui primo filiis hominum
caelum pro culmini tecti
dehinc terram custos humani generis
omnipotens creavit.

And, Modern English of Bede's Latin, should you want such a thing (as given in prose translation by McClure and Collins, The Ecclesiastical History IV.24, p 215-216):
Now we must praise the Maker of the heavenly kingdom, the power of the Creator and his counsel, the deeds of the Father of glory and how He, since he is the eternal God, was the Author of all marvels and first created the heavens as a roof for the children of men and then, the almighty Guardian of the human race, created the earth.

So why all this yammer about an almost archetypal dead, white man? Well, for starters, I think Bede is really nifty. But more importantly, I think Bede offers us a particularly valuable example of a life that brings together scholarship and spirituality. At least around ye olde PTS, there is a lot of kavetching about "soul-less scholarship." I can't tell you how many times I've heard or read student complaints about the utter lack of spirituality and prayer in the world of the religious academy. Bede's life and writing suggest that this isn't necessarily the case, if one has eyes to see and ears to hear. Sometimes it's simply easier to see such things with one who has long since joined the Blessed Company than it is to see in those closest too us. For Bede, as for many scholars today, academic work is very much a part of the spiritual life. It's not the only part, but it remains an expression of praise and adoration through the use of the gifts entrusted to us.

In a very real sense, Bede is one of my personal heroes. While I certainly don't plan on adopting 8th century hagiographic writing in my own scholarly work, Bede's ability to bring to light the relationship between history and theology in a faithful witness to the Gospel is something that I very much aspire to be able to imitate. Former Archbishop of Canterbury William Temple gets at this brilliantly in his book, Christianity & Social Order:
When people talk about Church History they usually have in mind a record of theological controversies, General or other Councils, and the formulation of doctrines. All that is immensely important. But Church History is vastly bigger than that; it is the stroy of the impact made by the Spirit of Christ upon the life of mankind.

For more information about Bede, have a look at the article from the Catholic Encyclopedia and at Bede's World. Neither of these are of tremendous scholarly value, but they're good for general information. If you're wanting some bibliography, let me know and I'll hook you up.

I would leave you with two prayers, the first being the collect for the lesser feast of Bede the Venerable from Lesser Feasts and Fasts and the second being Bede's own words from the end of his Ecclesiastical History (V.24, p 295):

Heavenly Father, you called your servant Bede, while still a child, to devote his life to your service in the disciplines of religion and scholarship: Grant that as he labored in the Spirit to bring the riches of your truth to his generation, so we, in our various vocations, may strive to make you known in all the world; through Jesus Christ our Lord, who lives and reigns with you and the Holy Spirit, one God, for ever and ever. Amen.

And I pray thee, merciful Jesus, that as Thou hast graciously granted me sweet draughts from the Word which tells of Thee, so wilt Thou, of Thy goodness, grant that I may come at length to Thee, the fount of all wisdom, and stand before Thy face for ever. Amen.

now where is that bfg when you need it?

24 May 2005
I have long held that the world of "Christian music" is largely (albeit not entirely) populated by acts that simply aren't good enough for the mainstream, alternative or indie scenes. Given that a great deal of the music is taken up with "the prosperity Gospel" (God wants me to be a rich and successful westerner - to which I offer a hearty bullshit), and a predominant "Jesus is my boyfriend" aesthetic, I find it theologically wanting. On the whole, for most Christian music, I would simply say mene, mene, tekel, upharsin.

I will grant there is a great deal of Christian music that doesn't suck. I would observe, however, that it is largely by groups that don't attempt to fit into the Christian niche market. Though I'm not really a fan, U2 definitely plays good music and fits here. Though she would probably chaff at the suggestion, I would also argue that a respectable chunk of Ani DiFranco's stuff has considerable theological merit. Dave Matthews has had some good things to say. Allison Krauss is outstanding. Sweet Honey and the Rock kicks some serious ass.

Now, from the people who brought you "Jesus is My Boyfriend, But Not in a Gay Way" and "Liberals Go to Hell" from the hit record Red White and Blue Chri$tian, there are "Christian" video games. Video games based on DOOM no less. They are somehow under the impression that building a first person shooter around the DOOM engine but removing the blood and gore makes it Christian. It's still a FPS game and you're still killing things that look like people. So killing without blood makes it o.k.?


And this was so extra special, it bears quoting from the article on the BBC:

Developers are aiming at more than the bottom line, however, as Washington state-based Brethren Entertainment Software makes clear in its mission statement.

People are tired of having these violent, demonic games dictating to their kids
Rev Ralph Bagley

"As believers in Christ, we pray that God will be glorified through our work and that each of us draw nearer to him as we develop and grow as a business," the company says.

"We also pray for God's unyielding protection for our company, as well as others who are involved in his perfect plan for the world."

The sentiments of Christian developers will also strike a chord with the many family groups concerned about the effects of violent games on children.

"No blood, no guts, no gore," says Rev Bagley. "What we want are emotionally full games that don't just rely on adrenaline.

"We are trying to build the genre of Christian gaming. People are tired of having these violent, demonic games dictating to their kids."

Okay, let me first say that I genuinely believe that ones vocation can be to just about any field: priest, monk, auto mechanic, banker, doctor, lawyer, politician, veterinarian, code monkey... whatever. BUT to associate the glorification of God with fiscal success is a problem. A big one. More over, if "People are tired of having these violent, demonic games dictating to their kids," then don't let your kids play video games.

On a related note, does this remind you at all of some of the rhetoric surround current US foreign policy?

As to the inevitable question about whether or not video games make gamers bad people, I would point you to Child's Play from the good men of Penny Arcade.

All of my theo-political ire aside, "Christian" video games wont really be that much of an issue if they suck as much as most "Christian" music. I am left with one lingering question. If they're pulling out all of the gore, are they also going to pull out the hyper-masculinized voice that shouts such inspiring things like "Impressive!" and "Mega Kill!"??? If they are, what on earth will the games be saying?

eye can see clearly now

23 May 2005

I went to the optometrist today for the first time in something like five years. It's amazing to me how much a change in the glasses can make... And I really like my new glasses - they're all shiny and stuff.

A couple of things were interesting about the visit:

  1. The optometrist that I saw quite possibly had the largest mullet I've ever seen. It went down well past his shoulders.
  2. There was a really spiffy new (at least to me) machine for retinal photography. The impressive thing was that it's patient controlled. The tech lined the machine up and positioned my head, but the button that triggered the bright green light that accompanied the photograph under my control. The added bonus was, no eye drops and only $1 more on the visit total. Über-spiffy.

a timely widget

For those of you not already in the spirit of the season, or for those whose desktop decorating needs have not been fully met, I give you A Sop in Wyn's Widget o' the Week (it's sithtacular):

xWing - a Star Wars goodie


As I was glancing through Boing Boing this morning, I was pleased to learn that there is now an official French word for blog: "bloc-notes." Per Legifrance:

bloc-notes, n.m.

Forme abrégée : bloc, n.m.

Domaine : Informatique/Internet.

Définition : Site sur la toile, souvent personnel, présentant en ordre chronologique de courts articles ou notes, généralement accompagnés de liens vers d'autres sites.

Note : La publication de ces notes est généralement facilitée par l'emploi d'un logiciel spécialisé qui met en forme le texte et les illustrations, construit des archives, offre des moyens de recherche et accueille les commentaires d'autres internautes.

Équivalent étranger : blog, web log, weblog.

cool hat of the week

22 May 2005
While it's not as cool as the Tim the Enchanter Hat (which I would so wear to class) or the Viking helmet I've always coveted (although Flavor Flav kind of ruined it for me), the iProp definitely wins the cool hat of the week award from A Sop in Wyn.

you might want to rethink your foreign policy when...

20 May 2005
Go read this.

When Russian villagers in the wee town of Bolotnikovo lump you in the same pot with Tsar Ivan the Terrible and supernatural forces...

mmm... brownies...

You have no doubt noticed, my dear reader, that I am something of a food snob. When I cook or bake, I vastly prefer to use organic products and am loath to employ premade ingredients or mixes. I revel in making everything from scratch. Ergo, when I come across a recipe that includes things like Snickers bars, I generally give it a miss.

Yesterday, I made an exception, went out on a limb and made these brownies. And damn, they were some fine brownies. I did substitue Flyer Gold Plane No. 3 bars for the Snickers. Almonds are far superior to peanuts and if one must condescend to milk chocolate, it should at least be good milk chocolate.

So, a hearty thumbs up to Chef Dave Lieberman for coming up with this brownie recipe. Mmm... brownies...

fun with the OED

19 May 2005
I realize this is going to mark me as a major nerd, but I don't really give a damn.

As I'm sitting at work with no real work to do, I've been goofing off with the Oxford English Dictionary. For some reason, I decided I wanted to know the etymology of the word snarky meaning "irritable, short tempered." It first appeared in 1906 and is from the word snark.

Snark is a verb that has both a intransitive meaning, "to snore, to snort" and a transitive meaning, "to find fault (with), to nag." Both are related to the North Frisian snarke and Norwegian snarka. All three are derived from the verb snork, "to snore, to grunt." Snork also has a noun form meaning either "a snore or grunt, a stiff inhalation" or "a young pig, a pigling."

I do, however, find the OED entry woefully incomplete as it omits The Snorks (an early to mid 80s ripoff of The Smurfs).

There now, wasn't that worth the little trek through the OED? From North Frisian to 80s cartoons in a few easy steps. Next time, we'll try for getting from Middle Egyptian to contemporary Portuguese culinary terminology in five steps or less.

blogging abandon(ment)

You'd think with classes over, I would be a more diligent little blogger. Yeah, not so much. The funny thing about graduate school is, you are so busy reading and writing that finding time to pay bills is a stretch and going to the market feels like a major extra-curricular activity. (There is, of course, always time to play video games and you have no doubt noticed that there is a direct relationship between the amount of work I have to get done and the number of posts made here.) So, real life has been catching up with me much like the desert floor so often catches up with the proverbial coyote. I'm sure there's a lecture to be given on priorities and responsibility, but I find such things to be highly overrated.

That said, there has been something I've been meaning to write about and yesterday something happened that spurred me to get around to doing so...

"Orthodoxy" has become quite the divisive word in the Church today. What has traditionally meant, per the Oxford English Dictionary, "belief in or agreement with doctrines, opinions or practices currently held to be right or correct," has come to mean something like, "towing the traditionalist party line." While it is true that in the rites of ordination for all three orders of ministry in the ECUSA there is a vow to uphold the "doctrines and discipline of the Episcopal Church," this is not, I would maintain, a clerical vow to uphold "orthodoxy" at the cost of all else.

Instead, I would suggest every Christian, by virtue of being baptized, is bound to uphold orthodoxy not as belief or agreement with doctrines nor as towing a party line but as something considerably more important. Here, I would argue for a more literal reading of the term: orthodoxy breaks down into two Greek words: orthos meaning "right" and doxa meaning "praise." Orthodoxy is then "right praise." To get at what I mean by this, have a look at Matthew 5:21-24:

You have heard that it was said to those of ancient times, 'You shall not murder'; and 'whoever murders shall be liable to judgment.' But I say to you that if you are angry with a brother or sister, you will be liable to judgment; and if you insult a brother or sister, you will be liable to the council; and if you say, 'You fool,' you will be liable to the hell of fire. So when you are offering your gift at the altar, if you remember that your brother or sister has something against you, leave your gift there before the altar and go; first be reconciled to your brother or sister, and then come and offer your gift.

In order to be in the space of right praise, we must live reconciled and reconciling lives. We must live, as Archbishop Desmond Tutu has said, according to the principal of ubuntu, realizing that people are people because of other people (umntu ngumntu ngabantu). To do otherwise is to perpetuate the death dealing power of sin. Wielding orthodoxy as a means of defining "us" versus "them" by any one group simply doesn't work.

I should perhaps take a moment to clarify, here I am not speaking about orthodoxy over against Arians, Pelagians, Donatists or Montanists. I am speaking here about divisions in the Church over issues of gender, gender identity, race and social justice. For the sake of a completely open hermeneutic, what got me going on this was homophobia and heterosexism in the Church and the conservative/traditionalist claim to orthodoxy as excluding not only LGBT persons, but folk who support and care for LGBT persons.

I would contend that we can talk about two orthodoxies: orthodoxy with respect to our relationship to and understating of God; and orthodoxy with respect to our relationship to and understanding of one another. (Patently, these two are inextricably linked, the former providing the mandate and standard for the latter.) To speak of orthodoxy with respect to our relationships to and with one another is to speak in terms of ubuntu. It is to speak and act in terms of the radical inclusively and life affirming Gospel of Jesus Christ. It is, according to the baptismal vows of the ECUSA, "to seek and serve Christ in all persons, loving your neighbor as yourself." Orthodoxy is, therefore, not a term of exclusion but a term of radical inclusion. It cannot be a claim that "you must be like me," but rather a passionate insistence that all are bearers of imago Dei. On my more radical days, I might even suggest that it means in some sense that we are all theotokoi, God-bearers like the Blessed Virgin.

In other news, happy St Dunstan's day.

thanks for all the fish

15 May 2005
I went and saw Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy tonight. It wasn't the greatest film I've ever seen, but then again, I didn't really care all that much for the book. The principle benefits associated with viewing the film were:
  1. Major introvert time at a convenient hour. Dark theater + alone = happy me.
  2. The fond memories the film brought up of a particular friend of mine who is quite the Douglas Adams fan.

2 down, 1 to go

Well, that's two Princeton Seminary degrees down and one to go. Next time I do this, I get the cool poofy hat.

Graduation was lovely and President Torrance (pardon me, I've been instructed to call him Iain)... Iain's remarks to the graduating class were wonderful.

The picture you're looking at is of me standing next to my ThM (and now PhD) advisor, the Rev. Dr. Paul E. Rorem. For those of you unfamiliar with the good doctor, he's the editor of Lutheran Quarterly and here are a few of his books:
If you're not in the church history crowd and you're trying to remember where you've heard the name Pseudo Dionysius before, his name came up a few times in Hellboy. ('Course if you want the real reference in the name, check out Acts 17:34. Pseudo Dionysius was an author in the 6th century who claimed this name and identity as his own...)

At any rate, graduation was nice. This photo represents one of the few descent pictures I was able to get.

Oh, and my cassock fit better this year than last because I'm losing weight. Boo-yeah.


14 May 2005

Well, in a little over two hours, I'm going to be graduating from PTS, again. This time, it's for the Masters of Theology in Church History. Four years from now (God willing and Committee concurring) I'll be walking again, but with a really cool poofy blue hat.

By and large, for the bulk of the year, I simply haven 't cared about this as a degree. The ThM has been a means to an end - namely, getting the number of history courses I needed to get into a good PhD program. Last year, when I graduated, it didn't seem like a big deal - I didn't really get worked up over any and it didn't bother me that folk were moving away. Maybe it was because I wasn't really moving on. Maybe I knew that I would still be in touch with the folk that really mattered. Maybe there were just so many unknowns about whether or not I was going to be ordained that things seemed to ephemeral to get worked up over.

But for some reason, this year I'm actually feeling a little anxious about the end of the year. I really do feel like I'm moving on, even though I'm not really going anywhere (though I still need to figure out where I'm going to live).

I do know that since Grandmother died this year, I'm feeling the pending anniversary of Mom's death a lot more and I suspect that has a lot to do with it.

Fortunately, I've kept myself very busy in the kitchen for the past two days getting everything ready for E's party tonight. That's managed to keep my mind off of things.

At any rate, happy graduation to me.


13 May 2005
DISCLAIMER: I'm going to try to do this without lapsing into stark raving spoilers, but since spoilers have never really bothered me, I probably don't have the best radar on the planet for such things...

I went to go see Kingdom of Heaven on Thursday night. While I am very much a foreign film buff and am definitely a sucker for a good number of the so-called "chick flicks," I am also a big Ridley Scott fan. Hell, the first time I saw Gladiator, I cried at the end. (So maybe I'm not a typical Ridley Scott fan...)

Anywho, I went to see Kingdom of Heaven and I enjoyed it. While much of the BBC review of the film is correct and many of the characters were re-invented, such is history in Hollywood. Show me a film in which the historical characters haven't been reinvented to some degree and I'll show you a documentarian that can't sell a movie. Don't get me wrong. I am, after all, a historian. (I get to say that now because as of tomorrow, I'll actually have a master's degree in history and will be starting the big degree in September.) I definitely get my nose bent out of joint when folk in film take too many liberties. Scott did take a few, but he also made an excellent point.

Walking into the movie, I was terrified it was going to be, as is much entertainment these days, anti-Muslim, racist, fear propaganda. It was not, albeit at the expense of some historical accuracy. Whatever the case, Scott did a wonderful job humanizing both sides of the story and managed to make a movie with Templars in it that wasn't laden with conspiracy mongering crap. Ultimately, I think the Kingdom of Heaven wound up being a good anti-war movie while reasonably dealing with the periodic lamentable unavoidability of violence. It was definitely bloody, but not Full Metal Jacket bloody.

All told, it was an o.k. flick. Not a great film, but worth the $8 and one that will probably wind up in my DVD collection (which is, itself, quite bizarre ranging from Babette's Feast and Amélie to Jeffrey, Star Wars, Le Pacte des Loups and Hell Boy).

the offending groove

11 May 2005

the offending notch

the kavetch, medium rare

It is a (medium) rare day that I will criticize Apple. However, because I can't blog about what's really irking me this morning (damnable ethics), you're going to be stuck reading a post about a USB extension cable.

Really, this is interesting, I promise.

Okay, that was a bold faced lie. Keep reading anyway. By virtue of visiting this page you've already admitted that you have absolutely nothing better to be doing than saturating yourself in the self-interested ramblings of a socially inept grad student, so there will be no clicking of the "back" button on the browser, thank-you-very-much.

Right. Now that unpleasantness has been dealt with, let's get to the unfortunate matter of the ill-made USB extension cable.

Yesterday, I taught my last private Latin lesson for the year and was given a very nice gift certificate to the mall by my client. After getting the new CD from The Killers and a 1/8" to stereo RCA adaptor cable (for the plugging of the iPod into the housemate's stereo), there was nothing else I wanted from the mall. Having cleverly converted the two gift certificates to cash by making two rather small purchases, I went to the den of capitalist computer evil (since the nearest Apple Store is 45 minutes away by car) and purchased a full size keyboard and iCurve.

When I got home and started rearranging my desk, I unpacked the keyboard, plugged it in and got on with my merry existence. Inside the box, there was a white USB extension cable. I think to myself, "Ah, how lovely. Now the black cable to my mouse will no longer clash with the rest of the computer as it can be neatly tucked away and run through this lovely white cable." I was, rather logically I think, assuming that USB is USB is USB. Yeah, not so much.


It turns out that some corporate shill at Apple decided to put a notch in the female end of the cable that matches a groove on the male end of the USB plug for the keyboard, so that the cable can only work as an extension for the keyboard. God forbid that some pinko communist freak should want to extend something other than the keyboard. That would be an abomination in the eyes of Steve Jobs.

What a bunch of hosers.

like body shots, only not

09 May 2005

I swore I wasn't going to blog about Tiger.

I lied.

Wow. Widgets are so incredibly sexy. It's a complete bell and whistle operation and absolutely nothing that you can't do with other applications. But I just don't care. Widgets rock my world.

I do think the iTunes widget is kind of dumb. Anybody who needs a widget to accomplish what "Command+Tab, Spacebar" or "Command+Tab, Right Arrow" can do is seriously OS impaired. That said, the built in Oxford dictionary is nice, as is the Yellow Pages widget. The ability to have a set of clocks up with different time zones is quite nice. I also really appreciated the Yahoo! Local Traffic widget and the Monkey Business Labs TV Tracker.

I especially appreciate TV Tracker because it lets me select the channels for which it displays program information. Thus, instead of having to schlep through rows of crap I'll never watch anyway, I can see what's happening on PBS, Food Network, Cartoon Network, the Discovery Channel, the History Channel, MTV and VH1 and be done with it. (Hey, no satellite or BBC America would be right at the top of that list.)

Spotlight is also really convenient and is a legitimate improvement on the Finder. Mail is much improved, both visually and functionally. The .Mac synchronization is really nice, as are the Smart Mailboxes. They still haven't put an rss feeder into Mail but that's a relatively small objection.

Safari is still out done by Firefox, but hey, Widgets man. Fucking WIDGETS!

the 593 ped bridge

07 May 2005

I decided to shoot a couple of pictures on my ride back from campus this morning. This is from one of the prettier parts of the ride, looking back towards Princeton.

is there a word in klingon for this?

06 May 2005

Did you ever get the impression that you were eating something that you once saw Lt. Worf eat on Star Trek TNG?

This was hella tasty, I promise. Spinach gnocchi, homemade spinach and basil pesto, and little bits of fresh mozzarella that got all meltey, gooey, and good.

But, yeah, looks like the Sci Fi food.

t minus 8 days, and the menu is...

05 May 2005
Okay, so graduation is more or less 8 days away. Big woop. However, for the party following, the menu is...

  • whole wheat quesadillas with caramelized wild mushrooms, fresh spinach and caraway havarti
  • roasted chili rellenos
  • baby portabella mushrooms stuffed with caramelized onions, topped with raw milk manchego and sun dried tomatoes
  • chachapas con frijoles negros
  • gaspacho
  • albondigas (for the meatavores)
  • fresh guacamole
  • pico de gallo
All of this will be hand made. :-) All but the albondigas and the gaspacho are my (original) recipes. What's even better is, I don't have to handle or deal with the meat!

Oh, yeah, and let's not forget the beer and sangria! Desert will be my Kentucky Bourbon Cookies and fresh fruit.

2 days in the kitchen for a party?

Hell yeah.

on caffeine and sabbath

Ethics suck. Well, not really, but they're not much fun when you have to repress the desire to post horribly bitchy and largely unethical things... okay, now that we have that out of our system...

I'm really feeling quite accomplished today. Last night I completed my semi-annual end-of-semester-domicile-desqualorification ritual. That is to say, I did laundry. I did a lot of laundry. Unfolded, it measured over a meter high piled in my laundry basket. But, it's all clean (at least until the cats decide to try to nap on it before I get home to fold it). I actually managed to clean ye olde 13 Viburnum Court on Monday, so now it's all purged and livable again.

Please let me explain, we of 13 V.C. do not normally live in squalor, but when you have 2 grad students busting hump to complete the last semester of their respective degrees, domestic cleanliness isn't really high on the list of priorities. That said, I think even the cats were a bit grossed out by the place before it was all said and done. (They poop in a box, so really, how high can their standards be?)

I have also ended my usual 72 hour end of semester caffeine fast. I consume so much caffeine during the close of the term that I feel compelled to give my body something of a break from the inhuman amounts of coffee, tea, and Jo Mints I throw into it. (Hey, at least I haven't sunk so low as to use caffeinated body gel, but comps may make a believer out of me yet...) So anyway, I try to give my body a bit of a rest from the chemical abuse of finals, which really translates to a 72 hour caffeine withdrawal headache. Somehow, I still think it's a good idea. But, damn son, did that first "cup" (24 oz. jug) of coffee taste good this morning.

Yeah, I'm a junkie, but at least I own it.

the list

03 May 2005
Apparently my "beer list" has become infamous. So, here it is:

The "Consensus Beer" (beer that my housemate & I agree on and is always in the fridge):
My beer:
It should also be known that I *heart* good mead, but that may well be a genetic predisposition. At any rate, it's virtually unattainable unless you've befriended an absolute loon that home brews. Don't get me wrong, home brewers are good folk. Home brewers that make mead are nutters, positively nutters.

(Oh, and "rumor" has it that the Hebrew Messiah Bold is fast becoming a seminary faculty favorite.)

helmet hair

I finally got around to cycling to PTS today. The challenge has not been the distance, it's been finding a route that's not going to suck at rush hour. 593/Princeton Pike has bike lanes and a bike path and is relatively flat (in comparison to where I ride recreationally, back around behind Lawrenceville). The hard part is figuring out how to get from Society Hill to 593. I did find a rather round about way today, but it adds about 15 minutes to what is a long enough commute as is.

That said, I love my bike. All told, I probably rode close to 15 miles today - not all that much in the grander scheme of things, but a good ride and I didn't feel guilty coming home and being a slug for the rest of the afternoon.

Speaking of bikes and recreational rides... it seems like every time I go riding in the afternoons to the little lake that's back behind town (sometime soon I'll post pictures), there are these two guys on road bikes that manage to pass cars going up hill, all while I'm grunting my way up those damn hills. Seriously, I'm beginning to feel some hostility towards those two guys with their tiny little butts in their tiny little bicycle shorts tear-assing around me. Well, not so much hostility as envy, but you get the idea.

it is finished

01 May 2005

I'm done.

I just hit print on the last paper of my Th.M.

I've decided to wait for E. to finish the last couple pages of the last paper of her M.Div. before busting out the martinis.

Oh, yes, there will be martinis.