Thursday, July 21, 2011

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Tuesday, May 19, 2009


i have been reading a collection of poems by czeslaw milosz. i read them in the morning before i start the days work.

i find his poetry hard to grasp, but here is a stanza i especially liked. it is from "throughout our lands", written after milosz had moved to the united states from his native poland:

If I had to tell what the world is for me
I would take a hamster or a hedgehog or a mole
and place him in a theater seat one evening
and, bringing my ear close to his humid snout,
would listen to what he says about the spotlights,
sounds of the music, and movements of the dance.

Friday, March 27, 2009

a new slogan for the catholic church?

i am part of a NT/early christianity reading group at the university of chicago. we are currently reading augustine's "on the trinity."

here is an especially nice phrase from today's reading (book ii):

"The Catholic Church Only is the Place from Whence the Back Parts of God are Seen."

can't you see that on a church sign?

Sunday, March 08, 2009

this is the sign above the drinking fountain in the men's locker room at the university of chicago gym.

i have always been impressed with the bold punctuation choices made by the sign's designer -four kinds of punctuation in such a small space! including a semicolon!

too bad the sign-maker couldn't find a place for an exclamation mark.
(nb: a mistake i have not repeated in this post.)

all of which reminds me that "semicolon" should be spelled "semi;colon".

thank you.

Thursday, December 27, 2007

my neologism

so, i think this might be my best ever contribution to pop culture jargon:

yupster: a person who is, economically speaking, a yuppie (e.g. owns a nice condo in a trendy part of town, fancy gadgets, etc.), but has a hipster aesthetic.

in my own town of chicago, the best place for yupster sightings is probably wicker park/bucktown. they are also frequently spotted in logan square.

Tuesday, November 27, 2007

remembering that special day

this was the actual news photo accompanying an article on iraq with the title, "Insurgents Disguised as Bride and Groom".

and people say there is nothing funny about an insurgency.

oddly enough, my friend zach, who is getting married next month, is using the exact same wedding photographer. he and his fiancee also chose the ply-wood backdrop.

Monday, November 05, 2007


this poem was partly inspired by a recent sermon at my church, st. barnabas.


the difficult question as to why the murder of the Egyptian,
a human being made in God’s image,
did not disqualify Moses
from leading the Hebrews out of bondage,
whereas the striking of the rock,
inanimate wood on inanimate stone,
could not be forgotten, and kept him
from entering the Promised Land.

the strange fact that it was God, not the Hebrews,
who buried Moses,
and God, having performed the funeral service and
understanding the privacy that friendship can require,
did not see fit to mention to anyone
where the body had been laid,
so that to this day
no one knows where Moses is buried.