“Ten Shekels and a Shirt” Paris Reidhead’s fiery sermon is one of the most listened to sermons of all time. Read the transcript here http://www.parisreidheadbibleteachingministries.org/tenshekels.shtml
Richard Webster of Writers in Oxford on blogs
“But they do demand something which not all writers possess – time and regular habits. Running a blog is rather like running a shop. If you don’t open regularly you will end up with no customers. Of course you don’t have to be there from 9 to 5. But unless you post at least every couple of weeks (and preferably every two or three days) your readers may desert you. Many people start blogging with noble intentions but find they simply cannot find time to continue. As a result cyberspace is littered with forgotten blogs which orbit the earth like abandoned spacecraft whose last log entry reads more like a fading note from history than a recent update.”
But just as a failed writing career is better than none at all, (ask Helene Hanff), stabs at a blog read by just a few is better than none at all, because the greatest beneficiary of a blog is the writer herself!
What I am Reading: Pictures from an Institution, by Randall Jarrell. Luscious, carefully written sentences, each one a delight. One of the most carefully written novels I’ve read in a long time. Not just funny, but absolutely hilarious. Enjoyed the portrayal of Mary McCarthy as Gertrude
Another academic novel, this one set in Oxford High School which my daughters attend. Daughters of Jerusalem by Charlotte Mendelson. Carefully observed but a bit too caustic and misanthropic for my taste. It leaves a bitter taste in the mouth.
We were saddened recently by the death of Gene Golub, my husband Roy’s post-doctoral adviser at Stanford. A brilliant scientist, but more a people person, genuinely interested in people, who gave each person the impression that he thought they were really interesting, and unique. And of course, he did. Giving people this gift of attention brings out what is really interesting in them; you feel yourself coming alive, becoming more interesting.
I thoroughly enjoyed our dinners and conversations with Gene. In the moving memorial website, it seems hundreds of others, treasured their friendships with him.
On reaching mid-life, I grow more convinced, that what you are as a person matters far, far more than anything you achieve. Many mathematicians have died, few have received the genuine outpouring of grief, and the accolades for what they were as a human being that Gene has received.
Give me knowledge, a seeker cries in Christina Rossetti’s poem
But he learns
“That all is small, save love,
For love is all in all.”
Flushed out by the July floods, evidently–they are everywhere! Scampering in the garden in full daylight, eating the ducks’ food, getting into the rabbits’ hutch, scampering above our heads at night.
Liberal applications of Rodean ( a mischievous pun on England’s poshest girls’ school) is taking its effect. Oh rats! And one reason we wanted to move to the country was for the wildlife.
Another plague is the spiders, everywhere, their startling prevalence somehow linked to the July floods too, my daughter’s biology teacher says.
More on the downside of Country Life–Foxes, Myxomatosis
We’re in all day, reading Harry Potter aloud, while heavy rains are forecast for today and tomorrow. Nothing like the July floods, when our own paddock, and our favourite meadows temporarily became the habitation of happy ducks and seagulls who had evidently successfully prayed the prayer of Jabez, bless me indeed, and enlarge my territory…
Here’s a lovely excerpt from Gilead by Marilynne Robinson which I am currently reading with great pleasure.
The story of Hagar and Ishmael says that it is not only the father of a child who cares for its life, who protects its mother, and it says that even if the mother can’t find a way to provide for it or herself, provision will be made. At that level, it is a story full of comfort. That is how life goes–we send our children into the wilderness. Some of them on the day they are born, it seems, for all the help we can give him. Some of them seem to be a kind of wilderness unto themselves. But there must be angels there, too, and springs of water. Even that wilderness, the very habitation of jackals, is the Lord’s.
A surprise among the lists of ten most popular websites is a spunky North American one, Flylady.net. It’s basically about the problem of too much stuff and how to organize it. The stories and testimonials are chilling–about the real distress caused by those who have too much stuff, more than they can handle, organize, keep tidy, deal with. Flylady offers a simple system of chores, one step at a time to get your house and life together until
Every room will be orderly
Every mess heap shall be laid low
The pathways straight
The surfaces clear
And the glory of order shall be revealed….
And the family shall rejoice together….
And yes, confession, I have used Flylady on occasion…. and am doing so now. Like all systems, it works if you work at it (rather than blog about it). 🙂