Tuesday, May 29, 2012

Villainy, Inc.

Color me naive, but I cannot understand the furor over the USCCB's continued refusal to place the rubber stamp of their approval on free contraception for all.  The issue has been in the news for months now, ever since the HHS first announced that universal health insurance meant universal coverage of contraception.  As the conservative blogosphere lights up with virtual air-fives at the bishops finally, finally doing something that makes them unpopular,the secular press has, for the most part, attacked the bishops with a steady stream of inflammatory rhetoric, flawed studies, dishonest reporting, and utter disregard for the ordinary laws of logic.  The latest is another New York Times editorial, characterizing the religious freedom lawsuit as a "dramatic stunt, full of indignation but built on air."

Friday, May 25, 2012

I Thought I Wouldn't Write a Post, but Then I Went to Mass

... and it came to my attention that it is the Feast of the Venerable Bede, and that demands acknowledgment!  (What, you don't use daily Mass as your saints' calendar too?)

I Have a Friend Who's Getting Married,

... ding, dong, the bells are gonna chime!

Tuesday, May 22, 2012

C'est Lui

Having been particularly cruel to opera on Saturday, I feel it incumbent upon me to admit that not all citizens of the opera world are immoral and reflexively anti-Christian.  Baseball has the St. Louis Cardinals; football has Tim Tebow (who needs no introduction) and Philip Rivers (who should need none); Hollywood has Jim Caviezel; opera has ... Nathan Gunn.

Saturday, May 19, 2012

We're All a Little Mad Here

Yesterday evening I went to see Nabucco at the Kennedy Center with my most excellent brother.  Nabucco, which is very, very loosely based on the story of the biblical king Nebuchadnezzar, is the third opera by Giuseppe Verdi, the composer better known for Rigoletto, La Traviatta, and Aida.  Chances are that even if you’re not an opera fan, you’ve heard one of the following somewhere …

Wednesday, May 16, 2012

My Train Hit a Deer Monday Morning

Monday was something of an adventure.  It started out with my dad and I standing on the platform waiting for our daily train; and the train was late.  Ten or fifteen minutes after the whistle should have blown, we heard it blowing … from the wrong direction.  The whistle coming from the wrong direction was soon succeeded by a train coming from the wrong direction; said train backed into our station, where it proceeded to unload all 694,217 of its passengers.  It seems that the train had hit a deer, and sustained injuries which, if not actually incompatible with locomotion, were at least threatening to the riders to be locomoted in the locomotive.

Monday, May 14, 2012

It Happens Every Spring

I will have a real post on Wednesday.  I just thought everyone who reads this blog regularly (all twelve of you!) would like to know two things.  First, the most common Google search to lead to this blog is "modest dresses."  I have no idea why Google thinks I am an expert in this area.  It's as if they know something about my private life that I've never blogged about ...  Mm, scary (as we'd say if McDonalds did not already have the copyright on that syllable of anthropic onomatopoeia).

Saturday, May 12, 2012

Saying the Black

Having written what I wrote on Tuesday, I should admit that I don't positively dislike the Tridentine Mass—I just prefer the Novus Ordo. That said, there are things about the TLM that I find … less than felicitous. The parts that are important can’t be heard, the parts that can be heard can’t be understood, and the parts that can be understood can’t be spoken by me. I realize of course that the silence of the TLM lends itself (for the prayerfully minded) to contemplation of the mysteries enacted; this is not a bad thing.  But there is a time for contemplation, and there is a time for public worship.  The two may and should overlap, but ultimately they are definitionally different and it cannot be expected that the circumstances most ideal for the one are going to be equally good for the other. 

Friday, May 11, 2012

Wise Discrimination

Weeeell, I had this serious, calm, cool, collected second post about the TLM and the LNO which will go up ... when it's done, hopefully tomorrow.  But in the meantime, I couldn't resist this bit of news:

Tuesday, May 8, 2012

Seeing Red

This is going to be an angry post.  If you’re already suffering from a tragical Tuesday, go read something uplifting instead.  Trust me, you’ll feel much better than if you keep scrolling down.  If you’re not Catholic, you’ll just be perplexed; if you’re Catholic and agree with me, you’ll be mad like I am; if you’re Catholic and disagree with me, you won’t like my characterization of your side’s arguments; if you’re Catholic and don’t have an opinion on the issue, you be miffed that I’m writing about a peripheral problem like this when Secretary Sebelius has been invited to speak at Georgetown.  (I think that’s everyone.  If I’ve left your group off the list, my sincerest apologies.)

Friday, May 4, 2012

Temperance and Gluttony

Crisp, with a tang of salt and a bitter bite;
Smooth in the throat as it stimulates the tongue;
Sharp to the taste as it’s colorful to sight:
Such is the food of the hungry and the young.

Tuesday, May 1, 2012

Poetic Conviction

“A good work of fiction is one which convicts the reader of some important truth.”  But what does it mean to “convict” the reader?  Why not say “convince the reader” or “persuade the reader” or even “prove to the reader”?