Friday, 13 November 2009

7 Quick Takes (XVII)

1. I am way behind on my SSHRC application. It's not even funny. Seriously. I do NOT want to do this. I have been applying for way too much lately.
OK. Sulk over.

2. It was Remembrance Day on Wednesday. As I live in Alberta, this means that I got Wednesday off. This should be true in all of Canada, but I know it's not in Ontario.
In case you aren't perfect like the rest of us and you live elsewhere in the world than the Great White North, November 11th, Remembrance Day, is a memorial holiday to the survivors and casualties of the World Wars and the other armed conflicts in which Canada has participated. We wear poppies and have a moment of silence at 11:00. (11:00 on the 11th day of the 11th month.)

3. On Monday, I ran a program for the homeschoolers of Fort McMurray. I had been told to expect two children and one parent. That was not good news.
Eight children came out. This was good. The program was only for the morning, but I think altogether it went well: the kids had fun, they learned something, and the parents didn't have to do too much work, which should be a good thing for homeschoolers. One of the students returned today to work on his project.

4. Switching back to Wednesday: I watched Taking Pelham 123. It was enjoyable. It wasn't amazing, but it was enjoyable.

5. In regards to pretending to try to complete my SSHRC application (which, did I tell you, isn't going well?), I took out some books from the library. Overall my library books have been unsatisfactory, but I am pleased with John Donne (of course). I hadn't read some of these before. I do like this dude's stuff. I think to an extent I want to write some out here for your reading.
I am less happy with Companion Encyclopedia of Psychology. They have one entry about personality formation which is even somewhat related to what I want, but the ideas in that article had already been uncovered in Shakespeare's day, for Pete's sake, and appears to have only recently been discovered by formal psychology. For goodness sake. I first encountered these ideas reading literary theory, not psychology. Seriously.
Anyway, the psychology reader has nothing in it about cognitive dissonance or what happens when the self-concept is challenged, which are ideas that I would be able to use. Alas, alack, oh well.

6. And speaking of books, I am in Isaiah. If you have been following along, then you'll have noticed that I've thus been through Ecclesiastes and Song of Solomon. I've read Song of Solomon tons of times over before, but I kept it in my readings just because I like it so much and, anyway, you always get something new out of any honest, careful re-reading, especially when what you're re-reading is as polysemous as the Bible. (Onions and ogres, here.)
Song of Solomon, if you haven't read it, is beautiful. It is fairly non-narrative. It has multiple speakers and sometimes (usually) it's hard to tell where one ends and one begins. Generically speaking, it is an epithalamion, or a wedding poem. Some of the blazons are a bit funny to us (such as likening the bride's hair to a herd of goats on a mountainside), but you must try to remember what they'd mean in a context which measures wealth in terms of agricultural bounty. Not only is it theologically meaningful, it's just plain beautiful love poetry. If you haven't read it, I encourage you to do so now. It's not long; you'll be able to do it in one sitting. You'll just have to come to it without expecting anything like a clear narrative. Don't try to figure out what's going on in terms of the whole story, but just try to figure out what's going on at the very moment you're reading.
Realization: according to Wikipedia, people with Catholic Bibles will not have known I was in Isaiah by now if I'd still been reading Song of Solomon this weekend, as the Catholic apocrypha has the Book of Wisdom following Song of Solomon. Huh.

7. I need to be working on my SSHRC. Did you know that? Also, I don't want to.
Hmmm. #7. Well, it hasn't been snowing here at all this week. The snow hasn't melted from last week, but it's been not too bad otherwise.
Oh! In the song I'm listening to right now: Home is behind/ the world is ahead/ and there are many paths to tread/ through shadow/ until the edge of night/ until the star are all alight. What is it? No cheating!
UPDATE: I liked the comic a lot (actually, I said, "Epic Yes!' out loud), but I think Tycho's last paragraph here is hilarious. At around this point the hypothetical nerd meter in my room is screaming red alert.


Cait said...

Easy peasy

LOTR The Two Towers. It's sung by Billy Boyd. The song title is the Steward of Gondor.

yolanda said...

Isaiah is so rich. I love how the book addresses issues of justice and peace and poverty and restoration etc.

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