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Professional Gadfly by day ...

... Consummate Student by night.

January 25th, 2005

The Sweet Hello, the Sad Goodbye ... @ 05:08 pm

Currently Emoting: : grateful/sorry
Currently Consuming:: The Corrs -- Would you be happier?

It's worth noting that one can feel that something is unquestionably the right decision --- and be incredibly sorry that this is the case.

The slate has been wiped clean, and while it has yet to be written upon again, I feel more hopeful than I have in many months about what the writing might be.

January 24th, 2005

The words of the prophets are written on a subway wall ... @ 10:17 pm

Currently Emoting: : cheerful cheerful
Currently Consuming:: Simon & Garfunkel -- Sound of Silence

A couple of friends of mine have recently moved into the immediate neighborhood, living now merely a couple of blocks from my humble abode and, fittingly, right behind the local public library. This has the added benefit of being able to detour through stacks of books whenever I go to visit them. In the process, I've come to observe the following inscription on the library's facade:

"Be made whole by books as by great spaces and the stars."

Now, for my lack of money and orthodoxy, that's a lovely and entirely appropriate exhortation. As Rabbi Louis Finkelstein observed -- "When I pray, I speak to God. When I study, God speaks to me."

Radical Days @ 04:06 pm

Currently Emoting: : confused confused
Currently Consuming:: The Cure - Hot! Hot! Hot!

I received a magazine solicitation in the mail today. This happens on a semi-regular basis, given that I subscribe to a couple of publications. Today's offer of "one free trial issue" came from none other than the National Review. I may have to commit hari-kari now.

I also now officially personally know at least three people who have "transitioned" or heavily entertained the thought of doing so -- from male to female in all three instances. Now, two of these are employed in, nay, are leading lights in, the Computer Gaming Industry -- coincidence, I ask you?! Yeah, probably.

2005 will almost certainly not take me to New Zealand. It will, however, more likely than not, take me to this lovely place -- with at least a few mournful lecture hours spent right around here.

"My beloved waits for me" @ 07:28 am

Currently Emoting: : awake awake
Currently Consuming:: Caedmon's Call -- 40 Acres

You know what's odd?

Jumping to someone's linked blog and discovering that, hey, not only does this person attend the same school I do -- I think they even sit behind me in one of my classes.

This particular Feminarian has an interesting project -- putting together a Christian version of Eve Ensler's wonderful Vagina Monologues. While I'm usually allergic to all manner of Christian copy-cat-ing, I think this is an eminently good and wonderful idea and I'll probably even send her something -- and you should, too (... assuming you have a vagina, of course.)

The last week has been one of ups and downs and some rather important, rather blog-able material. I've been as a general rule too tired, too overworked, or too preoccupied to put everything to paper, but for the high-(and low-)lights, that'll probably happen some time this week.

January 18th, 2005

For fun and procrastination ... @ 09:12 pm

Currently Emoting: : nerdy nerdy
Currently Consuming:: U2 - Miracle Drug

The Top 10 Signs that You've Been Reading Too Many Web Comics

10. You remember when Piro was still only 1/2 of the Megatokyo team
9. You've done the Insane Political Gaming Manga thing -- but now you just prefer to take your lumps.
8. You have a well-developed and passionate view on whether Kestrel should (a) date Angela, (b) remain friends with Angela and/or (c) make out with Angela for your vicarious thrills.
7. Everything you know about Canada you learned from Butternutsquash or a boozing mallard.
6. You never cease to be amazed that the Firewall at work won't let you open the Yahoo! Weather page but will let you read the latest installment of Sexy Losers (... uh, viewer discretion strongly advised.)
5. You've burned Scott Kurtz in effigy and/or own an icon of him.
4. Your 2004 write-in candidate for president was Llewellyn.
3. Your office door is lousy with drawings of God using hand-puppets -- and your boss/senior pastor has given up on censoring you.
2. Your one-stop source of gaming industry gossip isn't Slashdot or Plastic but Penny Arcade.

1. Not only do you know what "I bukkake for justice!" means, but you're familiar with the strip that originated it (... bonus points if you've bought the boxers.)

Do you want to live forever? @ 08:32 pm

Currently Emoting: : excited excited
Currently Consuming:: Bob Dylan -- Highway 61 Revisited

... having just sent this fascinating article to our friendly local philosophy professor, I figured others might be interested in it as well.

(As an aside, did anyone notice that the "genetically probably maximum" age for humans is now believed to be around 120? Does anyone else think that Genesis 6:3 giving that same number as limit on human life expectancy is vaguely neat and intriguing? No? Well then.)

My eyes! My eyes! @ 06:01 pm

Currently Emoting: : amused amused
Currently Consuming:: Right Said Fred -- I'm too sexy

I admit it. I think Bill Gates is sort of cute. (... statistically speaking, there's got to be *someone* who thinks so, after all.)

Nevertheless, Bill posing for a Teen Beat photo-spread, ca. 1983, is just amazingly painful:

(... bedroom eyes? Or just plain stoned? You be the judge.)

(... what are you holding there, hot stuff? The future of North America, you say? Carry on. Also -- are those even jeans? Polyester pants? What?!)

January 16th, 2005

A worthwhile reminder @ 10:57 am

Currently Emoting: : lazy lazy
Currently Consuming:: When I come back down -- Toad the Wet Sprocket

"If you cannot be merciful, at least speak as though you are a sinner. If you are not a peacemaker, at least do not be a troublemaker. If you cannot be assiduous, at least in your thought be unlike a sluggard. If you are not victorious, do not exalt yourself over the vanquished. If you cannot close the mouth of a man who disparages his companion, at least refrain from joining him in this."

Wise words from Isaac of Syria by way of dualravens.

Dusk before Fireworks. @ 10:07 am

January 15th, 2005

"I'm ok with being unimpressive. I sleep better." @ 05:44 pm

Currently Emoting: : busy busy
Currently Consuming:: Iron & Wine -- Such Great Heights

Last night, while LJ was writing in re-birthing pains, I sat with a couple of friends -- Ph.D. students, feminine allies from past seminars -- eating home-made guacamole, drinking Merlot, comparing notes on professors (the good, the bad, and those with unhealthy fixations upon their alma mater) and eventually watching "Garden State."

I confess, I fell hook, line and sinker for the clever slacker-romance -- it has now been added to my cache of "true romance" flicks, featuring "As Good as it Gets" and "Lost in Translation," as well as to "favorite New Jersey-inspired flicks" (... otherwise known as the "God bless Kevin Smith" category.) (Also, the soundtrack? Pure indie-emo-pop gold.)

A note of pure self-promotion, before it disappears into the annals of personal history (... and to remind myself that once, for a brief paper, I was apparently vaguely insightful):

"Dear M ....

The research and writing found in this paper are simply superior. I was very pleased to see the energy that you put into running down primary sources, particularly in the original German. You clearly sifted through these data and then moved to an ordering and analysis of the material that is wholly convincing. Your sense of historical judgment (for example, concerning whether or not Barth is a source of Evangelical thought) shows sure-footedness and scholarly maturity. The prose is crisp and clear throughout, with no hint of infelicitous usage or even vague meaning. In short, I am very pleased with what you have presented here and am happy to give you the highest grade we can award.

All good wishes ..."

... I so didn't earn that.

Professional Gadfly by day ...

... Consummate Student by night.