Fourth Wall

Monday, January 30, 2006

Run Away With Me

Anyone want to go with me to the Illinois Medieval Association Conference at the Newberry Library (Feb. 24-25)?

I've been told that the theme is "Peace and Power in the Middle Ages", which just might have something to do with my BA...

It's $10 (for students from affiliated Universities). I need to make up my mind *now* if I'm going to go, because the registration deadline is in two days.

Anachronism? What Anachronism?

Yeah, so blog-reading is very high on the List of Things I Shouldn't Be Doing Right Now (and blogging is even higher), but Mr. Pyrdum of Got Medieval made me laugh.

"as I repeatedly tell my undergrads, there's nothing more medieval than a good anachronism"

Context found here. Now go along your merry ways.

Sunday, January 29, 2006

I'm an Auntie! (v. 2.0)

To a wee one named Phoebe, born January 28th, 2006... thus continuing two Phillips traditions: the run of girls, and January birthdays.

Saturday, January 28, 2006

Happy Tommy A Day!

Those who are learned will be as radiant as the sky in all its beauty; those who instruct the people in goodness will shine like the stars for all eternity, alleluia.

Wisdom from above is first of all innocent. It is also peaceable, lenient, docile, rich in sympathy and the kindly deeds that are its fruits, impartial and sincere. The harvest of justice is sown in peace for those who cultivate peace. James 3:17-18

Yes, we love Thomas Aquinas, even though he worked against the Carmelites. Yes, we are having a dinner party. Yes, we are serving Aquinas wine, of Napa Valley.

In other news, I'll be needing much Thomistic intervention now that my research is rapidly moving towards a BA proposal and midterms/term papers are approaching at what feel like unprecedented rates. Can I really spend over a year with Geoffroi de Charny, Bernard of Clairveaux, and chivalric saints? I think so. I love hagiography. I love it I love it I love it.

In other news, my classmates who think that Chaucer was risque for his time should take a look over here, which might get it through to them that the medievals were far from prudish. Don't click on the link if you don't want to look at weird medieval religious jewelry depicting genitalia.

And I didn't attend the talk on these medals, so don't ask me what they mean. I have enough trouble from the Legenda Aurea.

Friday, January 27, 2006

Late Night Shopping in the South Loop (And Talking About Boys)

Target, Dominic's, Jewel.

C: My brother is awesome. If he doesn't become a priest he's going to be the best Catholic father since Dad.

V (to Carolyn): That's so cool! A guy to go shopping with? What more do you want?

A: Look, a bucket! Get Dan!
V: And it's not metrosexual!
A: You know, "The Metrosexual Bucket Incident" would be a good name for an emo band.*

V: ...and I can get to know all these people I don't know at all.
A: It'll be your Calvert House Debut. We'll dress you in white and put magnolias in your hair.

A: Ha ha. I am a vector for Dar Williams.
V: You did not just say that.

*If you haven't heard the story of the MBI**, I refer you to Dan Rober

**Absolutely not to be confused with the MIB.

Tuesday, January 24, 2006

Historia Calamitatum

Well, what would you think if you recieved the following e-mail?

Well, the hospital kept Grandma because she had a bladder infection and they thought she might have pneumonia (today decided that she didn't) and that she might have an ulcer (not yet tested). They are pleased with her improvement since yesterday, though I thought she was quite spacy and weak when I went to visit after work.

I don't think any of this is serious--just uncomfortable for her--and that she'll be back at the Heritage soon.

Dad has a head cold. Genevieve lost her collar. Joan [my aunt. -AH] is on her way to Boston and Maine for the baby [Laura, my cousin's, baby] arrival. (The baby's head has dropped and Laura has had faint contractions.) Oh, and poor Matt [Laura's husband] was out walking the dog, slipped and fell, and broke his leg in three places. Apparently the "lucky" side of this story is that he waited to be rescued on snow and the cold kept the leg from swelling, which made it easy to set. Laura's hormones are raging so profoundly that she can't tell the Matt story without laughing hysterically. John [uncle] said, "It's a good thing that he really loves her."

What is with my family this week?

Monday, January 23, 2006

Engaged Girls I Know


And people wonder why I get so gloomy. Yes, yes, mea culpa. That doesn't make it not suck.

Sunday, January 22, 2006

Reflections and Observations

Some observations from the last post:

I spend a lot of time thinking/talking about Peter Abelard. This may be a sign that I should consider using him on my BA paper.

That would involve locating the combination to my Reg locker in order to re-read the book.

I also spend a lot of time talking about boys, but I was already aware of that. Stupid boys.

Some quotes from the recent events:

V (while Alice is complaining about Latin): That's not STUPID! That's HORACE!

V (Leaving the Calvert Chapel): Has that always been there?
A: Umm... yeah.
V: Oh. Hi, holy water... my name is Veronica.

A: After the recent Romance of the Rose reading, I don't want to think about sticks, or staffs, or canes... or umbrellas...

Rober: (dreamily) So many missals... I could take the baseball team to mass!

Matt: (Watching Pirates. Audio system is making the desk shake.) Hey Tom, they're shooting at your garbage can.

Tom: It's a little loud.
Matt: What are they going to do? Call the RA? *

And one event I left out was Worthen's attempt ** to find me a boyfriend. (Names removed to protect the innocent.)

W: There. His name is Dan. It's kismet.

A: Do you take objection because his name isn't Dan?
W: I take objection because he's a weirdo.

A: He's thinking of being a priest.
W: Where do you find these people?
A: Calvert House.
W: No, I mean, where do they come from?
A: Miami.

I'm pretty sure Tom had a few funny lines in the past week, but I can't remember them.

* I suppose this joke is only funny if you know that Tom is the RA.
** a rather pitiful attempt, at that.

Projects & Events of Recent Days

Sunday, Jan. 15th: 10:00 rehearsal, 11:00 mass. Stopped by the Germanys' to pick up a few remaining books, had Dawn over to the new apartment for tea. Jasmine made dinner at the apartment.

Monday, Jan. 16th: No classes. Slept in, went to Mass, had a long lunch with Carolyn and Veronica, did a crossword puzzle with Carolyn and Veronica. Undergrad dinner. Ironed purificators, traveled to the Reg with Veronica and Gaby, and spent much time on the third floor. Pestered David Kaye, who was reading "Henry IV" on the second floor. Stayed up late doing Latin.

Tuesday, Jan. 17th: 9:00 am Pilates. Ran errands at the post office, coffee and pastries at the Barnes & Noble cafe (evil!) with Veronica. Forgot I was supposed to meet Anna for breakfast (evil!). Tried to apply for job at Quad Club: it was taken. Chose to lounge around reading Hegel over reading Chaucer/attending my Chaucer class. 4:30 mass. Made dinner (Lentil-Kale soup) for roommates. Went to Beginning Lindy. Got frustrated at my inability to do anything right in said Beginnning Lindy class. Walked around campus after 10:00 to compose myself. Returned to apartment, where I did laundry, read Hegel, and studied Latin until the wee hours of the morning (okay, 3:00).

Wednesday, Jan. 18th: 9:00 BJ breakfast. 10:30 Latin, with Quiz. Skipped out on mass to read more Hegel. Had precisely one dollar in cash, and spent it on a cherry coke at the Classics Cafe. Spent some time discussing Hegel, Latin, and the Jesuits with Phil 25. Phil 25 insists on introducing me to (crazy) Michael Allen. 1:30 German Reformation; it kicked ass. (The class, not the historical event.) Returned to Calvert to sleep, etc. Ended up talking to D Robes (about Hegel and Peter Abelard), mopping the lounge kitchenette area, and introducing said D Robes to the Nile for dinner. Had Hot Chocolate with Veronica et Gaby, talking about boys and Simone de Bouvier. Went home, read a little Chaucer, went to bed.

Thursday, Jan. 19th: 9:00 am pilates. 10:30 breakfast with Anna at Salonica (a first for me). Read Chaucer at Calvert and talked to Carolyn about boys and Peter Abelard. 3:00 Canterbury Tales. 4:30 mass. Took advantage of my new status by playing sommelier at the Calvert House clergy dinner. Ate many good leftovers from said dinner. Went to Veronica and Gaby's. Drank hot chocolate, talked about boys, and read Caesar.

Friday: 9:30 BJ breakfast, reading Caesar. 10:30 latin, 12:30 mass followed by a long lunch at Bartlett with Carolyn and Rober. Did a crossword with lunchmates. Washed and ironed purificators, set altar linens to soak. Trekked through the rain to Veronica's, where we ordered a pizza and watched an episode of Brideshead. After an interval in our own apartments, Veronica and I met up again to travel through the snow to Max east, where we watched Pirates of the Carribean with Tom (Ancona) and Matt (Beard). Ate chocolate and zucchini bread. The snow was beautiful. Made the journey home, and fell very soundly asleep.

Saturday: Woke up around 10:00. Went over to Veronica's, where we made french toast. Traveled out to the Shoreland: Margaret wasn't in. Went to Border's and bought a copy of The Life and Times of Archy and Mehitabel. Returned to Shoreland to have tea with Margaret. Knocked on doors of both Ian/Brian and Geoff. Nobody answered. Went home to discover that our downtown dinner plans had been hijaked by a couple with too much work to do-- so we stayed in Hyde Park. Spent much time at Veronica's, talking with V, Matt, and Gaby. Was referred to as "the fourth roommate". Veronica came here for tea and homework, but discovered that she didn't have said homework. Drank tea, read Archy and Mehitabel, and went to bed.

Today: Rehearsal, Mass, Brunch, German Ref reading, Latin.

Wednesday, January 18, 2006

I had breakfast at B-J this morning, and was bemused to hear 100.3 (the "love" radio station) play an ad for plastic surgery back-to-back with an ad for divorce mediation.

"'Aha!' I thought, in Geoff-mode, "THIS is what comes from our cultural obsession with emotion-based, romantic 'love'".

Wednesday, January 11, 2006


An infidel song worthy of your attention: The Calling, "Wherever You Will Go".

"When I'm gone/ you'll need love/ to light the shadows on your face."

We need no love but the love of God. All Christian love reflects the love of God.

That is all.

(P.S. It's my 21st birthday and I'm at my desk doing Latin, listening to soft rock and waiting for my laundry to dry. I'm so wild.)

Monday, January 09, 2006

Some Observations

I don't trust people who list the Bible as a favorite book.

There's something intrinsically wrong about sweatpants that need to be air-dried.

Middle English has a whole heck of a lot of words for "blue fabric".

I haven't worn my contacts in a really long time.

Professor Fasolt reminds me that I know absolutely nothing about history.

I've been spending a whole lot of time at Veronica's, to the point that I almost tried to let myself in at her front door rather than going around the corner to my own.

Sunday, January 08, 2006

Two Sonnets, Two Elizabeths

I am in need of music that would flow
Over my fretful, feeling finger-tips,
Over my bitter-tainted, trembling lips,
With melody, deep, clear, and liquid slow.
Oh, for the healing swaying, old and low,
Of some song sung to rest the quiet dead,
A song to fall like water on my head,
And over quivering limbs, dream flushed to glow!

There is a magic made by melody;
A spell of rest, and quiet breath, and cool
Heart, that sinks through fading colors deep
To the subaqueous stillness of the sea,
And floats forever in a moon-green pool
Held in the arms of rhythm and of sleep.

- Elizabeth Bishop

"Sonnet XXXV"
If I leave all for thee, wilt thou exchange
And be all to me? Shall I never miss
Home-talk and blessing and the common kiss
That comes to each in turn, nor count it strange,
When I look up, to drop on a new range
Of walls and floors, another home than this?
Nay, wilt thou fill that place by me which is
Filled by dead eyes too tender to know change
That's hardest. If to conquer love, has tried,
To conquer grief, tries more, as all things prove,
For grief indeed is love and grief beside.
Alas, I have grieved so I am hard to love.
Yet love me-- wilt thou? Open thy heart wide,
and fold within the wet wings of thy dove.

- Elizabeth Barrett Browning

I dreamed of Mahler last night.

I don't know what to make of that.