Monday, May 23, 2005

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It's a whole nother picture! Featuring Matt, Bethany, Professor Vandenbosch, Kristin, and Kent.

Wednesday, May 18, 2005

sex on the thorubos blog

I think we should use our thorubos group blog more, so I made my post about Lauren Winner's Real Sex: the Naked Truth About Chastity there. I'm hoping to make that blog into a hopping place for discussion, especially in the absense of face-to-face discussion when many of us scatter across the world after graduation. It won't be the same as a chat over some brie or apples and dip or a van ride to rescue a stranded thorubos-er. But, then, what would?

Saturday, May 14, 2005


I had a realization when I was talking to Joyce about my adventures (and misadventures) in procuring bread to use for LOFT communion tomorrow. I had to call a few places, drive farther than I really needed to because I called the wrong D&W, just to get the right kind of bread to break for the sacrament. She asked "isn't it just bread?" and I explained that it had to look right and be break-able and not taste funny (I find it disconcerting when the Body of Christ broken for me is unexpectedly sourdough or dill or something). She said now she's going to be thinking about this conversation when she's trying to take communion tomorrow.

I thought about that some more (I felt a little bad) and realized that I like that the sacrament is so connected with normal life. That somehow me running all over town and asking around to find the right thing and trying to carry all of it into the chapel at once and find a place for it in the kitchen is a part of it. It's God's Grace in the middle of our daily life. Of our eating and drinking and community, most explicitly. But also in our running errands and preparing for worship and trying to show God's Grace to others. Sacraments are supposed to show us God's grace in our everyday lives, remind us that God's grace is already in our everyday lives. Today that found me in an unexpected way.

Friday, May 13, 2005

Art as Gift

I'm perusing Alan Jacobs' A Theology of Reading: the Hermeneutics of Love for my lit theory exam later today, and I came across the idea of art (specifically literature) as a gift:

In other words, to think of a book as a thing is to commodify it in ways that deny it human significance: Conversely, to think of it as a gift, as a human activity, may create confusion - How can a book be a person?...(78)

I think a lot of the time I read and write as if it were a gift. Like the author wants to give me something she has discovered, like a child coming inside with a carefully selected dandelion, or a friend returning from a trip with a necklace or a trinket. Sometimes it's more like my mom giving me luggage for my birthday: "here's something I really think you will need." And a lot of the time I really do need it (my mom and some authors are wise like that).

And when I write, sometimes at least (when it's good?) I want to make it worth giving. I try and think as far as I can to somehow reach something that's going to be worth something. Like I am saying to any potential reader "isn't this nice?" or "here is something useful" or both simultaneously, if I'm really lucky.

Of course, not all gifts are thoughtful, or useful, or elegant. Sometimes a gift has more strings attatched than you would really like to receive. And sometimes that is the way with literature, too.

Wednesday, May 11, 2005

a poem for the end of the year

I wrote this poem for a Jazz Vespers service we had a few weeks ago, but it's relevant for right now, I feel.

The Present

I can be sentimental.
Nostalgic even.
Holding moments in my fist
knowing even now that I am crushing
them into a dust of fuzzy memories,
inside jokes that no one else gets, vague grins
and murmurs of “those were the days”.

I’ll wake up one day
and wonder whatever happened
to the person who I am sitting beside today,
talking about hopes and dreams, or telling jokes,
or explaining the virtues
of her favorite coffee shop.

And I wish there was a way to hang on to
the beauty of now, collect
moments like seashells, stored in a
wooden box on top of my dresser.
Somewhere safe where they
won’t disappear. With all the other
things that meant something to me once.

Wednesday, May 04, 2005

Legislating Morality

So apparantly a Texas legislator has decided that the best way to deal with increasing sexuallity in high schools is through lawmaking. Now, I'm sure that sexuality in cheerleading routines is a problem, but is this really the way to deal with it?
I really wonder if legislators wouldn't be better off spending their time trying to find ways to keep their constituents healthy, and fed, and stop trying to fix moral problems in high school cheerleading squads by making uninforceable laws. If they are interested in the moral training of students, maybe they could fund the schools better, and get people to mentor these girls instead.