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Thursday, November 27, 2003

Happy Thanksgiving!

Now, turn off that computer--and get out there, press some flesh, and spread good cheer.

posted by Robert on Thursday, November 27, 2003 | link

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Monday, November 24, 2003

Football Round Up.

Thanks God for the New England Patriots. Despite yesterday’s coronary-inducing win, they have been the ‘Ski family’s saving grace. No matter how bad reality gets, no matter what shock the forces of evil throw at you, you always have 3 hours a week of pure, otherworldly goodness. When Tom Brady takes the field, there is no crisis. When Tedy Bruschi slams a receiver into the dirt, God is back in His Heaven. For 3 hours a week, all is right with the world. If this whole mess had happened at any other time of the year, I think the stress would have killed the Notorious G.U.P. But with the Patriots to wrestle reality to the ground and stomp its face, he’s hanging in. Me too.

God Bless the New England Patriots.

posted by Lee Ann on Monday, November 24, 2003 | link

I’m Alive. Oh-ho so Alive.

For those of you not into vintage Love and Rockets, that just means I ain’t dead yet. I have been off-line and dealing with mega-probs, family-wise. Here’s a big thanks to everyone who wished me and my family well. Especially Patricius Maximus, whose site you should be on when you aren’t here. Also, a big thanks to Bob, for keeping the site going, although he is showing off with his posts. Like he’s so special ‘cause he reads magazines with no pictures in ‘em. So a big thanks to all my devoted Spinsterians. Both of you.

PS: the comments box is sporadically malfunctioning. So if the site loads slow or nobody respond to your post, that’s why. Sometimes it shows no comments where there are some and sometimes it won’t save any comments at all. If you really want to say something and can’t comment, email me and I’ll post it. Within reason.

posted by Lee Ann on Monday, November 24, 2003 | link

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Saturday, November 22, 2003

Sesame Street Crime

Kay Hymowitz’s cautionary new book, Liberation’s Children, garners a fine review by Travis McSherley in today’s TownHall.com: The author, says McSherley, “knifes through all the luxuries of the American child to discover that the values of this age have created a huge chasm of emptiness -- where the soul once resided.”

From the book:

"These are strange times to be growing up in America. A mere twenty years ago, who could have imagined a world where nine-month-olds use computers, ten-year-olds dress like Las Vegas showgirls, and high schoolers pass through halls with armed guards."

"The same forces that have liberated today's kids from want, settled life paths, and confining traditions have also 'freed' them from the moral and spiritual guidance that has always come from parents, teachers, and the culture at large. The result is not that today's kids 'have no values,' as pundits often tell us. On the contrary: American children develop Victorian-size superegos dedicated to the command to realize themselves through work."

That we are breeding tiny monsters who will soon enough be towering over us doddering fools is a fact gathering increasing attention in the usual places as well as in some surprising venues—the comics pages of your newspaper, for example. Check out this morning’s “Mallard Fillmore” cartoon on home schooling (sorry, no link at this date) for an acute angle on the problem.


posted by Robert on Saturday, November 22, 2003 | link

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Wednesday, November 19, 2003

A Few Good Men

Michael S. Rose’s new book Priest is a balm for many of us who have approached despair over the Catholic Church “sex” scandal. (I put the word sex in scare quotes because it is about both more than sex and less than sex, if one understands it is foremost about disordered love and if one uses the biological definition of the word sex.) From publisher Sophia Institutes Press description of the book:

“When sin brings down some priests, He causes grace to abound in others. Evidence for this may be as close as the rectory of your own parish; and it extends across our country to church after church where, undeterred by scandal-filled headlines and anti-Catholic editorials, thousands of modest priests continue to serve their flocks faithfully, living quiet lives of love, prayer, and service. To remind us of this, author Michael S. Rose has gathered here the true stories of ten of these faithful priests. Some are young, some old. They hail from different backgrounds and have different ministries; some work with the poor while others walk the corridors of power. Their talents vary as much as their temperaments. One trait they share in common: God’s grace is working vigorously in each of their lives, sustaining in them a burning love for Christ and an unwavering fidelity to His Church.”

I’ve read it, it does what they say it does, and I can’t recommend it enough.


posted by Robert on Wednesday, November 19, 2003 | link

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Thursday, November 13, 2003

Damage in the Cathedral

George Sim Johnston has a fine, terse piece in today's Opinion Journal on the damage the counterculture did to churches in the 60's and 70's. His inspiration was a book he skewers, Mark Oppenheimer's "Knocking on Heaven's Door" (Yale, 284 pages, $30), "a study of the effect of the 1960s and early 1970s on our relationship with God."

A Catholic, himself, Johnston took special "interest in the chapter 'Roman Catholics and the Folk Mass.' It is not quite accurate to imply, as Mr. Oppenheimer does, that all the liturgical changes that occurred in the Catholic Church after Vatican II were decreed by the council. Some indeed were, but most, including altar tables facing the congregation and the abolition of polyphony and Gregorian chant, were not. Nor were they asked for by the laity. They were the work of a determined minority of clergy and liturgists who had a horror of anything smacking of the transcendent. 'Horizontal' was in; 'vertical' was out. As a result, we found ourselves on Sundays singing pop jingles like 'On Eagles' Wings,' a song that makes 'Michael Row the Boat Ashore' sound magisterial."

This only mild hyperbole aside, Johnston's case is well stated. How we pray is not just a reflection of our beliefs but shapes them as well.

posted by Robert on Thursday, November 13, 2003 | link

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Monday, November 10, 2003

Full-length piece on Dana Gioia

My article on the new National Endowment for the Arts Chairman is now up at Enter Stage Right.





posted by Robert on Monday, November 10, 2003 | link


posted by Robert on Monday, November 10, 2003 | link

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Sunday, November 09, 2003

Be Prepared

Being a Boy Scout was one of the seminal experiences of my youth, so it comes as a bit of a shock to realize that a so-far successful effort has been made to deny a similar experience to boys today—a time when positive role models for boys are fast disappearing from the public square. Here’s what David Horowitz has to say about it over at Front Page Magazine:

"Imagine for a moment that you are a radical leftist with a singular agenda: destroy the fabric of American society. If you could pick a group that has been instilling civic values and virtues in young males for nearly a hundred years target, one champion of the ideals, morals and principles this nation embodies, who would you pick?

“If you said the Boy Scouts of America you would be dead on the mark. For more than a decade, the left has worked to wear down the Boy Scouts. The spearhead of this effort has been the American Civil Liberties Union. The ACLU has attacked the Scouts in California, Illinois and New Jersey, just to name the states that had particularly high profile cases. To its credit, Boy Scouts of America has stood firm in this firestorm.”

The link above explains what you can do about it.




posted by Robert on Sunday, November 09, 2003 | link

They Get Paid for This?

Denis Boyles in his Friday Euro Press Review at NRO has the best solution I've seen for what to do about all those journalist types who make their living grinding out hackneyed comparisons between the war on Islamic terrorists and the Vietnam War:

"I think it's time we brought all the journalists home. If it's necessary, we can always devise a smarter set of policies for Iraq. But no matter what, we're never going to be able to build a smarter press corps."

Perfect.


posted by Robert on Sunday, November 09, 2003 | link

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Wednesday, November 05, 2003

Light Posting.

This has been a week and a half of pure hell. Posting will be even more scattershot than normal. On the bright side, I’m pretty sure the past couple of weeks will get the whole ‘Ski clan out of eons of Purgatory.

posted by Lee Ann on Wednesday, November 05, 2003 | link

Football Roundup.

This will be short as unpleasant events will be superseding even the miserably few posts I actually blog. Alabama didn’t lose this week. They didn’t play either but some weeks you take what you can get. Auburn disgraced itself by humiliating a girl’s school, LA-Monroe, for homecoming. Running up the score against a weak sister school should automatically disqualify you from any bowl bids. It’s just disgusting. You never see Joe Pa doing that crap. Of course, you never see Joe Pa win championships either.

The Packers beat the Vikings much to my humongo surprise. I thought they’d lose, badly. Favre was on target all night and his receivers came up big. Ahman Green managed not to fumble the game away. This was a fun game to watch. It still amazes me how much better Favre plays when he’s hurt. The defense still weakened in the fourth quarter but didn’t give up. All in all, a great game.

The Patriots beat Denver in a squeaker. I award myself the gridiron medal of valor for watching 2 ESPN related games in one week. The Pack game above was the late game on Sunday and the Patsies were the Monday night game. Nothing ruins a good game like ESPN announcers. Even Madden is less than himself. Have I mentioned the mondo stupid music contest ABC holds during halftime. Let’s just say that football players should never rap. Pretty much nobody should ever rap but especially not football players. Back to the game. Brady was on fire, with good accuracy and control. He seems to have gotten the hang of the longball. The defense looked a bit hollow, energy-wise as well as injury-wise. The reffing was horribly intrusive. Denver was strong on defense and okay on offense, but their lack of offensive fire did them in. Competent ain’t enough in this league. Maybe when the Snake gets back they'll light something up. Personally, I just can’t believe the Patsies are winning.

posted by Lee Ann on Wednesday, November 05, 2003 | link

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Saturday, November 01, 2003

Birth of a Fan

And I'm not talking about the Coach Al Groh led U.Va. Cavaliers' football squad, at this very moment butting heads with N.C. State in Raleigh--I've been a Wahoo for too long to mention. No, it's author/poet/essayist NEA Chairman Dana Gioia. I've just worked up yet another piece on him, still in draft form, available here. (It will be quite familiar to those of you who have already seen my posts here on Gioia.)

UPDATE: Versions of my above-mentioned piece are now under consideration at a couple publications; I have therefore have pulled the link to the earlier draft. Will post an update when it's been accepted and provide the new link.

posted by Robert on Saturday, November 01, 2003 | link

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Contact Spinster Lee Ann at calhounista_at_hotmail

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Two Babes and a Bob! Opinion, insight, commentary, sarcasm, scathing polemic, and wit by Lee Ann, Carol, and Robert. Featuring the spectral presence of Gena.
Contact the Spinsters at: brodskii@yahoo.com (Gena) calhounista@hotmail.com (Lee Ann)

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