26 February 2009

Great is Thy Niceness

It's not that I don't love the work that Campus Crusade for Christ does for evangelism.  It's just that I don't love its disregard for the church tradition that set the foundation for its very crusading existence.  Accordingly, I found this absolutely hilarious:

The Semi-Pelagian Narrower Catechism

Do read...with an open mind and a bit of humor.

25 February 2009

Ash Wednesday

Elohim turned to me, His eyes wet and blazing.  "Eve, oh, what, what have you done?"
"I'm sorry," I cried.  "Forgive me."  An interesting word crossing my lips--forgive.  It would take me many years to understand what I meant by this.  
Adam moved a short distance away from me.
"I do," He said.  "I already have."  He paused to look at Adam.  "Adam, where are you going?  Are you not part of this?"
Adam pointed to me.  "She told me it was good, that we would grow wise.  This is her fault...Your fault, because You made her for me."
"Adam," Elohim said.  "Really, are you unable to think for yourself, act for yourself?  Can you not stand on your own two feet?"
"But I would not have eaten had it not been for her," he protested.
Elohim was silent.  He watched while Adam dug his toe into the ground.  Then, softly, He said, "Did not the two of you discuss eating of the tree multiple times?  And did you not agree together that you would ignore my warning?"
Adam's voice was small.  "We thought You wanted us to eat of it.  As a test.  To see if we could make our own decisions."
Elohim's face softened.  "Adam, my love is not crafty or devious.  It exists to be taken, to be accepted.  There is nothing I desire from you except loyalty."
Adam hung his head and returned to my side.  He reached for my hand.  "You're right," he said meekly.  "I ate too."
We stood hand in hand, chins and lips quivering, and looked up at our Maker.  I did not fault Adam then--that came much later when he blamed me for his deafness--for it was all so overwhelming.  I could barely understand the widening abyss between Elohim and me.
Elohim turned to me.  "Eve, I have told you before that you will have children, you and Adam."
I nodded.  
"Your pains in childbirth will be greatly multiplied, yet despite this, your desire will always be for Adam, to please him, and in this way he will rule over you.  This is not as I wanted it."  He grew somber, morose even, and continued, "Men will call you slave and subordinate.  As a woman you will know discord and hatred instead of the harmony and peace I wished you to have.  Your sensitivity will be interpreted as weakness, your intelligence as evil."
"I do not understand," I said.
"I know, my child," He said tenderly.
He sighed and spoke to Adam:  "Adam, did you not remember my commandment not to eat?  Because you have eaten from the tree, your work will seem fruitless.  You will have to work to subdue the earth; the ground upon which you work will be cursed.  With great toil you shall eat of it, all the days of your life.  Thorns and thistles will crowd out the plants of the field.  You shall eat bread until you return to the ground from which you were taken, for you are dust, and to dust you shall return."  

With this last proclamation, Elohim sobbed, and the earth rumbled, the trees shook.

--Eve:  A Novel of the First Woman by Elissa Elliott, pp. 143-144.

24 February 2009

Sparky vs. Grim Reaper, Part 2: The Battle

I'm sure I dropped whatever it was I'd been holding and jumped on the edge of my bed closest to where Sparky's tank sat on my bookshelf.  "Buddy!  Are you okay?"  I said in a voice probably a bit too concerned sounding.  He looked up at me, pathetically hovering next to his favorite plant.  His bulgy little eyes said it all--No, he wasn't.  

I launched myself toward the box I keep his food in, conveniently hidden because Sparky gets so excited at the sight of the blue Beta Pellet bottle that he'd probably wiggle himself to death from the thrill of it all if he saw it 24-7.    Normally as soon as I head toward the box, he starts squirming in culinary ecstasy.  Today, he just blinked and continued hovering, the Mysterious White Film drifting along with his movements.  I dropped a pellet into the water.  He looked up at it and resignedly swam to the surface to retrieve it, more like a sloth and less like his normal, piranha-like self at dinnertime.

It was official.
Sparky was on the fritz.
It was time for drastic measures.

I added water to his tank.  I tried to feed him several times a day, taking up the Grammy Andersen worldview that food solves every possible malady.  I dug through my supplies of fish paraphernalia and found the medicine my parents used when Sparky got an eye infection a few years ago and applied it to his water, STAT.  It was Sparky vs. the Grim Reaper and by George, Sparky would win if I had anything to do with it!

For a few days, I turned the corner into my room, terrified I'd find a floating fish.  Unfortunately, in my zeal for keeping my fish alive, there were a few times that I subjected poor ailing Sparky to a hearty shake of the tank to make sure he was just sleeping and not, in fact, dead.  Alas, what would have resulted in Shaken Baby Syndrome had he been a young mammal only resulted in a few dirty looks at my insistent shaking with accompanying shouts of "SPARKY!  WAKE UP!  I WON'T LET YOU DIE YET!!!!"  

As scary as it was, we really bonded through Sparky's sickness.  Instead of casually ignoring him as I ran in and out of my room, grabbing a book or a sweater on my way to the next event, I stopped by Sparky's tank to make sure he was okay.  He'd float up to the top, his fins waving as if to say "Thanks for checking on me, Cindy.  I'm going to go back to sleep now, I don't feel very well" and settle back down amongst the rocks and his plant, looking a little more content than before.  We were reunited in spirit, and it felt so good.

It's tacky.  It's probably a bit pathetic.  But the truth is that this fish, who once refused to enter the left side of his tank after Mom and I put a pumpkin with a smiley face next to it on the counter to add a bit of Halloween cheer, has wiggled his way into my heart.  He would charm anyone with his fishy wiles, really.  When he lived with my parents, he got excited when he heard my dad's voice because he knew that he'd get food soon.  He used to watch my mom wash the dishes, intently swimming from side to side as she moved dishes from one sink, to the other, to the drying rack.  I wake up in the morning and look toward the bottom of my bed to see him sleeping along with Mari and I, always one to be included.  Even my friend Lindsay, who took care of him over the summer, loves him.  I know I can't bring him on the plane with me to Juneau, but I'm not quite ready to say goodbye yet.  

So imagine my wonderment when a few days after I noticed the Mysterious White Film...it disappeared as quickly as it had come! Sparky was spunky as ever! He wiggled and squiggled every time I glanced his way, especially when I headed toward the food box, jumping out of the water to get to the food like he did when he was younger.  It's a medical miracle!  Or at least a veterinary one...

Sparky has been saved!
Can I get a witness-ah?

23 February 2009

Sparky vs. Grim Reaper, Part 1: At Last

From the first time I laid eyes on him, situated between the grasshoppers and the fake plants in Petco, I knew that Sparky was a very different kind of fish.  It was June of 2006 and my first full summer with my parents in Washington.  I had a job and zero friends due to the whole moving right after high school graduation thing.  After a particularly pathetic day, I grabbed the car keys and told Mom that I'd be back in a few minutes.  Alright, if I don't have any human friends, I thought as I drove to the town center, I'll buy an animal one.  Pets make you live longer, right?   I parked the car in between Michael's and Petco, avoided the dogs jumping on their owners to get to that new toy they knew was just purchased, and made my way to the fish aisle.  A tower of beta fish stood before me, sequestered in their little jars, looking a bit more like a science experiment than a friendly pet.  I moved closer to investigate one.  
I looked at it.
It looked at me. 
It dropped down to the bottom of its container.  Too boring.  My fish has to have some chutzpah.

I took a step to my left to see the next candidate.  No sooner had I set eyes on it than it began to convulse in a fishy little seizure.  Too exciting.  My fish also shouldn't beat itself to death on its own tank walls.

Making my way across the tower of fish, now looking more like the Tower of Babel, I worried that my strike outs on the human friend front would extend to the animal world.  

And then I saw Sparky.  Whereas other fish had stared lazily or freaked out entirely at my presence, he swam over in a fishy sort of excitement, curious to see who this new visitor was.  "Why, hello!" he seemed to say, "Are you going to take me home today?"  At last!  I had found the perfect beta!  I picked him up and headed to the next aisle to procure some colored pebbles for his new tank, which may or may not be an old vase that my mom had lying around.

I roll-stepped my way over to the counter, my new friend carefully between my hands and the bag of pebbles squished between my elbow and my ribs.  After I had made my purchase, ignoring the fact that I was actually paying for a companion, I walked Sparky out to the car, nestled him in the center console next to my water bottle, and drove home with the sensitivity of a new parent--every other car was a potential threat, every stop sign an occasion for the most gentle stop of my life, every pothole something to be avoided at all costs.  

Soon we were an inseparable owner-pet pair.  We were a regular Bonny and Clyde--he'd pick up the pebbles at the bottom of his tank and throw them against the side right when I was falling asleep at night for some extra attention, waking me up with a little tink! tink! and get so excited at the sight of his fish food that I had to sneak up behind him with it so he wouldn't be so excited at the thought of eating that he'd actually forget to nourish himself.  After a few months, I bought Sparky a plant for his tank in celebration of him not dying (a feat for my previous fish).  He was wary of it for days, until one afternoon he backed his tail to the edge of the tank, took what looked to me like a giant breath of anticipation, and shot through the middle of the plant with all the fishy courage he could muster.  When he made it through and hit the other side of the tank, he backed up, shook his head as if to say, "I made it through?   I MADE IT THROUGH!!!!" and swam lazily among the stems and fronds.  Now he hides in it when he knows I'm trying to change the water.

Oh yes, it's been a great history Sparky and I have had.  We've been inseparable, even taking road trips from Washington to New Hampshire to Chicago.  But last week when I noticed he was sleeping a lot more than usual and had a funny looking white film hanging out of his mouth, I knew something was wrong.  Sparky had taken ill.  My life turned from casually ignoring him to watching his every move, making sure he didn't succumb to death by Mysterious White Film.  It was Sparky Watch 2009.

19 February 2009

Early Morning Engagement Musings

In about a year, the idea of being awake and functioning at 7:23am is probably not going to be so exotic.  Today, however, I am absolutely flabbergasted at not only my level of functionality, but also the fact that I've been up for almost three hours now and have used the words "Apocalyptic" and "eschatological" several times each thanks to pushing my Jewish Backgrounds of the New Testament take-home test off until the very last minute.  It's due in about....55 minutes.  It was to be taken online and timed for two hours.  Being the senior that I am, I took two hours and one second just to be cheeky and now find myself with approximately an hour until class and nothing to do.  Frankly I'm thrilled for the time to blog.  

It's been a difficult two weeks--papers, quizzes, tests, the realization that two of my classes are finished for all eternity in about two weeks and I therefore have six class periods and four assignments to bring my GPA up to a respectable level.  On Monday I took a little sanity break in the form of an oft' put off trip downtown to get my engagement ring cleaned.  It's been awhile by the estimations of one who's only been wearing the ring for six months--I had it cleaned before Thanksgiving, but all things ("things" being the myriad holiday foods it accidentally ended up in thanks to Winter Spinning Ring Syndrome) considered, that's awhile.  

Homework over my shoulder in a bag, I called my future mother-in-law for some advice on dealing with the church for the wedding while walking to the train station.  Another crisis averted--for now.  The El train pulled up and as I stepped in I was pleasantly surprised by the newly upholstered seats that greeted me.  There wasn't a piece of pre-chewed gum or a gang tag on any of them...My, what a queen I felt!  "Good afternoon, m'lady.  Your chariot has arrived."  What luxury to bring me to my destination!  

I sat on the train, journaling about how I'm not sure if it's a sign of humility or pretension that I always dress up when I go to the jewelers.  Not too much--jeans and heels, makeup applied, hair done--but it's not exactly a sweatshirt and Chuck Taylors either.  This is major couture for college students, folks.  I don't necessarily want the fine people downtown to think I'm an heiress, maybe just a chic young designer or the next up and coming cellist in the Civic Orchestra.  Accordingly, I wear a lot of black.  Try as I might, I always still feel like a little girl stepping into the Michigan Ave storefront.  The door closes.  I look around.  Workers look at me.  I inevitably make the first move, asking to get my ring cleaned.  They inevitably ask if it's actually from their store.  I inevitably say "Yes" in the sweetest voice I can manage, all the while imagining some witty retort that would remind us all of that scene in "Pretty Woman".  I'll say it next time, I think to myself.  It never happens.  

They take my ring back into the recesses of the store and I poke around the display cases, silently amused at the mere shininess of it all, and stare anxiously at the door through whence my symbol of betrothal disappeared, as if it were the fine jewelry equivalent of the clothes dryer.  No, Cindy, it's not going to be lost back there.  You'll get it back.  It's not a puppy, you shouldn't miss it.  

Eventually the clerk returns, smiling as if to compensate for questioning my worthiness to be there.  Try as I might, I can't help but beam, remembering the day that Kip and I went looking for this little symbol of love about a year ago.  It's not the metal or the stones or the price tag--I told him I'd be happy with a trash bag twist tie shaped into a circle--it's the memory of looking for it together: noticing that he was trying so hard to be all serious and businesslike, but would crack into a grin when he thought no one was looking; remembering how for the rest of the day after we went shopping there, we'd catch each other's glance and just beam, and how every time we visited each other thereafter he'd take my hands, stare longingly into my eyes, get all romantic, drop to one knee and tie his shoe just to tease me.  

Having thought all of this in the time it took for the jeweler to scrape the sweet potato casserole of yorn out of my setting, I gladly take my ring back, push it onto my finger, and thank everyone in sight as I head out the door.  GPA be damned...that trip was worth it!  Papers are temporary, this is forever :)

16 February 2009

Call Me Melito

So I had a fun time figuring out which Church Father I am.  I wonder if they have a quiz for the Desert Mothers...

You’re St. Melito of Sardis!

You have a great love of history and liturgy. You’re attached to the traditions of the ancients, yet you recognize that the old world — great as it was — is passing away. You are loyal to the customs of your family, though you do not hesitate to call family members to account for their sins.

Find out which Church Father you are at The Way of the Fathers!

14 February 2009

Happy Valentine's Day!

In the interest of protecting anyone reading this from a) Singles' Remorse and b) vomiting due to how cute I know Kip and I get sometimes, I'm resorting to merely posting a couple links in celebration of a Feast Day that has nothing to do with chocolates or hearts.  Enjoy: 

haha...Scientists are researching smooching:  give this article a big wet one.

This is better than anything I could have written for today!  She has the best stories!

If you really do want to check out the ecumenical background of Valentine's Day, thank the geek who has the Patron Saints Index bookmarked on her laptop.  (That would be me).  Turns out St. Valentine of Rome was actually pretty cool.  And he's the patron saint of affianced couples, so there you go!

Please Excuse the Geeky Wedding Moment

I just have to share this.  This is our photographer for the wedding and it is the single wedding planning-related item that I am most excited about (other than marrying my best friend and the love of my life, obv).  I am THRILLED to see these pictures, especially because Austyn, Kip, and I are going out the day after the wedding to take some more pictures of just the two of us.  

::geeky wedding moment finished::

13 February 2009

The Adventures of the Rabbit People

I've been trying to figure out a couth way to blog about The People Upstairs for about five months now.  In the end, I've realized there's really no polite way to do it, but my insanity threshold has been met and I must cyber-vent.  

It all started in September when Amanda walked into the study room in our apartment to find Mari sitting at her desk, staring in fear up at the ceiling.  "Hey, can I use some of that milk in the fridge?" she asked.
She was met with an upheld hand via "Stop!  In the Name of Love".
"Um...what's going o--"
"Shh!"  Mari pointed to the ceiling.
She must have thought Mari was losing it.

And then they heard It.   Mari looked at Amanda.  Amanda looked at Mari.  Another groan sounded from the apartment above them, accompanied by other assorted, um, rhythmic sounds.
"Is that.........?"  Amanda asked.
Mari nodded.  "It's been going on for awhile."

Oh yes, we had those kind of people upstairs.  In the interest of keeping this blog PG-rated, we shall refer to them as Rabbit People.  If you don't understand that, then go ask Mom and Dad.

It was at this point in our first experience with the Rabbit People that Taryn and I returned from orchestra to the apartment, unaware of what would meet us.  Amanda ran from the study room, through the kitchen, and to the living room in whence we stood, yelling,  "You'll never guess what we heard today!"  Mari followed her at a slower pace, looking at once eeked and amused.  When they relayed the story to us, we found it unendingly amusing.  And it was--it's a pretty normal college experience, I suppose.  Not one you find everyday in your average Evangelical Christian college, but a college experience nonetheless.  

The novelty wore off when I realized, upon studying for my weekly Greek quiz every Monday at 10am that the Rabbit People had a schedule.  And it pretty much revolved around my study times.  We're pretty patient people in our apartment, but when we got back from Christmas Break and were greeted to the same, er, situation, it was more than we could handle.  Amanda, Mari and I sat in Mari's and my room, screaming "WE CAN HEAR YOU!!!!!!!" during lulls in the action and wishing we had a broom so we could hit the ceiling.  It was especially cruel a week later, when we had the Rabbit People over one half of the apartment competing with the guy above us on the other half who'd just broken up with his longtime girlfriend and sat in his living room playing sad songs on his guitar all day.  Ecstasy (supposed) on one side and sorrow on the other.  C'est la vie.  That's the college life I suppose.

My sanity threshold was hit this afternoon when I, trying to remember everything I'd just studied about niche agriculture, was putting my life together to head to my Environmental Science test.  Unraveling the blue Pashmina I bought at Covent Garden in London from my bookshelf, I stuffed it in my bag for good luck and headed toward my bedroom door when I heard It again.  "Are they seriously doing it again?" I yelled to Taryn, who was in the study room.  "Yes.  And it's much worse in here."  She didn't even sound surprised.  Ugh.  If I'd been heading to anatomy or maybe even an upper level psychology class about Freud maybe it would have been applicable.  As it stood, I ended up having a flashback in the middle of a question on desertification of sub-Saharan Africa and laughing through part of my test.  

Wish my apartment luck on Valentine's Day.

12 February 2009

My Full Fontal Revolution

Like most second-semester Seniors, I have been quietly launching a guerrilla offensive against that institution commonly referred to as The Man.  While most seniors launch said offensive in the form of skipped classes, course loads with classes like Basketweaving 101 or Nordic Myth and Lore (sorry, Scandinavian Studies majors, anything that involves Thor is not a real class), or generally misbehaving (a la The People Upstairs and their activities that I haven't the courage to blog about yet), I have chosen a more stealth way to subvert.  While some seniors are on the front, I am on the font.  

Oh yes.
It's possible.

After 16 years of typing papers to the requested specifications (1" margins, double-spaced, Times New Roman font, ___ amount of pages, give us your firstborn and you'll get an A, etc...) I'm tired of The aforementioned Man getting to decide my font preferences.  Who decided that Times New Roman is the best font ever in existence?  Personally, I think that a hearty Papyrus would make my papers on Biblical exegesis and interpretation look a bit less mundane and a bit more authentic.  A WebDings document might brighten a stack of otherwise boring grading for a lonely professor.  If I took a computer science class, I might consider doing every paper in a font like Verdana or something that reeks of the good 'ol days when the screens were black and the lettering that lovely shade of puce.  

Yes, I am old enough to remember that.  

Unfortunately, I am not one of those second-semester seniors that takes easy classes.  And so, I am bound to The Man and his silly font rules.

...or so he thinks.

One more reason why I love my Mac:  it contains, unlike PCs, the Times font.  

Not Times New Roman.  Times.

It's a bit smaller, so really I'm losing out in terms of page counts, but really I win in the end, because I am not actually using the specified font in all of those seemingly obedient papers I've been turning in.  The Man just thinks I am because Times is one apple that did not fall far from the fontal tree.  

Oh yes, I am quite the underground revolutionary.  Just send me to Paris and we're all set.  I'll type all the secret anti-Nazi documents in Times font just to be cheeky.

07 February 2009

Blue Skies, Smiling at Me...

Okay, so maybe I overreacted.   No sooner did I write a whiny blog about cold Chicago weather than an absolutely wonderful day appeared out of the blue...or maybe more like the slate-gray.

A beautiful day.
A perfect day.
A 55-degree weather day.

I awoke this morning to drag myself to my 7 am desk shift and, upon looking out of my window, noticed something odd.  And green.  Heavens demurgatroid, it was grass!  My walk down Kedzie to Park North was surprisingly lovely, the sunny sky greeting my every step with a cheery "See?  Isn't it worth getting up at 6:30 on a Saturday morning?"  No, the $6 an hour really isn't worth it, but seeing the sun was nice.  Bottles and potato chip bags emerged from melting snowbanks on the pavement like bears waking out of their winter naps:  dirty, pretty gross, but a welcome sign of Spring nonetheless.

It's days like these that are cruelly optimistic--a tease of green grass, blue sky, and warm breeze.  I dug my flip flops out from the recesses of my closet and took full advantage of the day, relaxing on Kasey and Alethea's porch and moving my chair periodically to stay within the sun's warm touch.  It's the kind of day where windchimes sound like heaven and even the random floaties in my lemonade are welcome guests...Oh, you came out to enjoy the day as well?  I'm sorry you ended up in my refreshment!  

My reverie came to an untimely end when the clock struck 3:45, my cell phone alarm persistently reminding me it was time to trudge back to Park North for another shift of asking for IDs and forgetting to push the button in time to unlock the inner dormitory door before yet another student stared through the windowpanes at me with loathing.  As I descended the back porch steps, I was sorely tempted to leave a flip flop on the bottom stair as an homage to my Cinderella-like day.  But now it's 4:52 and the sun is setting.  The high tomorrow is only 38.  But hey, Prince Charming came looking for Cinderella, so maybe the sun will come back again later.  I definitely should have left that flip flop.

05 February 2009


I think Dante was onto something.  While traditional depictions of Hell feature a be-horned Devil whipping and otherwise smiting his damned subjects in an indefatigable furnace, Dante Aligheri's version in The Inferno depicts the Prince of Darkness (like, Satan, not Ozzy Osborn) eternally trapped in a lake, his massive wings circulating such cold air that the water freezes around him.  Naturally, Lucifer needs something to keep him warm, so he eternally snacks on the three most famous betrayers in history:  Brutus ("et tu, Brute?"), Cassius, and Judas "You Betray Me With a Kiss" Iscariot.  It's grotesque.  It's horrific.  It's........incredibly similar to the North Park campus at present.  

Seriously.  If Chicago winter were a person, it would not be someone to be trifled with.  I'm sick of sub-zero windchills.  I'm sick of having to suit up in about 9387958235 layers to stay warm in the seven minutes it takes to get across campus.  I'm sick of the goo in my eyes freezing when the wind blows (which is ALL. THE. TIME.)  

Yes, the hockey game that some freshmen started on the North Branch earlier today was cute.  And the snow was pretty for about a month before it got dirty and frozen solid.  But when one goes to church and, while the entire congregation is kneeling in prayer, an ice field slides off the roof and onto nearby parked cars causing one to wonder if God really did hear that prayer we just recited about sending Jesus back now and it is therefore the apocalypse, things are officially absurd.

Luckily, the wonder that is the Alethea-Kasey-Becky-Rachel apartment has a solution for situations such as these:  Farch.  It's a new season to fill the time between Winter and Spring, occuring in those pesky months of February and March when everything is frozen (our hope included).  Celebrations planned for this year include, but are not limited to, a Bob Marley beach party with fruit slushies and Cool Runnings and a Dress Up As Your Favorite Disney Princess movie-viewing bash.  I'm pretty sure Farch is somewhere about the fourth level of Limbo.  It's better than the seventh circle of Hell.

04 February 2009

Mom and Oatmeal Don't Mix

It all started with oatmeal.

I was on the phone with my mom yesterday morning after my Jewish Backgrounds class discussing the fascinating pros and cons of silk flower bouquets versus fresh flowers and making oatmeal when I interrupted our conversation with a hearty "OW!"  I paused, waiting for a maternal burst of concern.  
"I think I just gave myself a papercut on my oatmeal."  I said, realizing exactly how ridiculous it sounded.  
"How'd you do that?" she asked.  
"No idea.  Anyways, I think they make some really realistic looking silk hydrangeas, so if they're cheaper than fresh, then maybe that's the way to go..."  I stirred my oatmeal and headed to the futon in the living room, thinking nothing of my wound.  A bit annoying, yes, but generally acceptable to live with.  All was well for a few hours.  And then I went outside and wore my wool gloves, which pulled at my oatmealcut.  And went to orchestra and played my cello, which also didn't help the situation.  And tried to type a paper and therefore added blunt force trauma to the mix.  

By the time I woke up this morning my little oatmealcut gave out a big amount of pain.  I made my way through showering looking like I was having afternoon tea with the Queen Mum, although instead of holding up my pinky, I held up my index finger.  (How elegant I am!  Please pass the shampoo.)  While I was heading out the door to class, Mari's (Mexican) boyfriend, Francisco, sat in our living room watching a telenovela and, upon seeing me pass by, said, "Oh Ceeendy, deed ju cut your feengar?"  
"Yeah, on some oatmeal."
He looked at me, raised his eyebrows, and turned back to his telenovela, probably thinking it was his English that was the problem.  I left him on the futon to ponder it.  

I made my way through class, fumbling with unbuttoning my coat and turning book pages and came back to my apartment looking forward to an afternoon snack.   I grabbed my phone to give Mom a wedding planning update as I eyed the as-yet-untouched (for the day) canister of oatmeal on top of the fridge.  I grabbed the canister and a measuring cup, pouring like a pro and deciding what mix-ins I was in the mood for as the answering machine chirped its instructions.  "Hi Mom, it's me.  I just wanted to let you know that I talked to Genevive and she said she'd be one of my flower ladies..." I scooped out a cup of oatmeal "...and that they're probably not bringing Langsea since she'll just be two..." I turned on the water to add to the bowl "...but that's okay, cause.............................." I paused "um, I just realized I added the wrong amount of water to the oatmeal I'm making.  I have to go fix this.  Anyways, gimmeacallbackloveyoubye."  I flipped my phone shut and stared at my improperly moistened bowl, wondering what to do and cursing the culinary wonder that is oatmeal.  

And then it hit me, it wasn't oatmeal's fault.  It was Mom's.  Every time I mixed the two, tragedy occurred:  papercuts, improper proportions, oh my!  She has a similar trend with grilled cheese, accidentally burning one side almost every time she makes it.  It's cute though, and I suppose in time my oatmeal curse will be as well.

I tried to right my wrong, microwaving it to a grainy pulp and adding honey and brown sugar.  In the end I figured that pouring it into a loaf pan and sticking it into the oven would be the best course of action.  Who doesn't love baked oatmeal right?  Mom called me back as I stood in front of the oven, poking at my baked oatmeal with a fork.  It sprung back to greet the tines. "Did you figure out how to fix the oatmeal?"
"Um, I'm trying to figure it out at the moment actually."
She struck again, as I realized about a half hour later as I sat in front of my computer typing this entry and eating my oatmeal, now the consistency of how I imagine a slaughtered Teletubbie would feel.    

It's okay.  I still love her.  She does still put the burnt side of the grilled cheese down on the plate so I can't see it, after all.

03 February 2009

Who Says Bible Majors Aren't Fun?

I've taken to drawing stick figures to augment my notes.  It's been a rather useful note-taking tool.  Take, for example, this illustration of the hierarchy of the Roman Catholic Church:

Also consider Alethea and my thoughts about if J.K. Rowling wrote a book about 
Church History:
The stick figure on the left is Irenaeus saying "I'm St. Irenaeus!  Be gone, heretic!" and brandishing a wand toward the be-hatted stick figure on the right, who is proclaiming "I'm a heretic!"  It's too bad St. Nicholas wasn't there to slap the heretic.

I also have a line of stick figures named Paul, Schmuli, and Irenaeus with arrows in between them to illustrate the idea of apostolic succession.  Who says Bible majors are no fun?

Acrostical Adventures of Spring Semester

For no reason in particular, the song most often stuck in my head recently has been this one:

In celebration of this fact, Alethea and I recently composed an acrostic proclaiming "THE LONELY GOATHERD SONG ROCKS" during Eastern Theological Tradition in between discussions on theosis and wincing at the stories of Origen castrating himself after he took Jesus' words to "cut off your right hand if it causes you to sin" a bit too literally.

Today is flippin cold.
Hell is probably frozen, too, at this point
Even nose goo freezes.

Longing for a fireplace to sit in front of
Oranges are hard to come by
Not in Mexico--you get them straight from the farms!
Envy consumes me
Like the envy you feel towards Brad's sweater?
Yes.  Blue and red argyle is the new black

Greeks are awesome--that needed to be said.
Oh goodness, why do I get stuck with all the "O"s?
Alright.  Brad is hilarious!
That is certainly true.
Hip--definitely describes how you look right now.
Eegads!  I think I look like Sporty Spice.
Really really hot Sporty Spice!

Soup would be very nice right now
Ontario has a lot I've heard
Need to move there apparently
Gimminy, Alethea, that sounds great!

Russia is probably colder...I think that's why they're so angry
Oh goodness yes..."I must break you"
Chicago is a good runner-up in terms of cold, though.
Kerygmatically, this acrostic is ridiculous
Superfluous as it has been, I think it has been time well used...or at least hilariously.

I never dreamed that The Sound of Music and theology would be so closely intertwined.