Fourth Wall

Sunday, February 25, 2007

March 1st

I swear, I'm finishing my first draft by St. David's day.


Saturday, February 24, 2007

The More I Read, The Less I Understand

Yesterday's conversation with the haberdasher'd one turned to a (I think yiddish) phrase which I can no longer remember, and if I could remember it I wouldn't be able to spell it. The gist of it was that you need enough meat on your ass to be able to sit down and get your work done.

That said:

Ways I have procrastinated on my thesis since giving up a certain stupid social website for lent:
1) Messing with the 'logs (look! tags! SWEET!)
2) Reading/Translating Frederico Garcia Lorca.
3) Messing around on
4) Making mix CDs (Dmitri reports that he does this, too.)
5) Perfecting my bibliography.

Seriously. Working on the bibliography to avoid writing the paper is a new depth of procrastination, even for me.

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Friday, February 23, 2007

The History of Spirituality Hurts My Brain

Unfortunately, that's what I'm writing for my BA

But the concept of discipleship here has two meanings. The first is that of an imitative following of Christ, while the second denotes a Pauline participation in him. Spirituality therefore has two poles: one is local, rooted in our own specific cultural, historical and psychological situation and is visible as diversity, while the other is universal, located in the person of Christ himself, and is unified. The first pole expresses the way that the Gospel acts upon us in our own unique situation, while the second points to the supernatural and open-ended character of our discipleship as we are increasingly drawn into the mystery of the Church, as the mystical Body of Christ. The unity and integrity of Christian spirituality is guaranteed therefore by the unity of Christ, while its forms will be as diverse and multifaceted as is human experience itself and the human person.

-Oliver Davies, "Celtic Christianity in Early Medieval Wales

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Thursday, February 22, 2007

Cobb Coffee Shop is currently playing The Mountain Goats' "No Children" ("I hope you die... I hope we both die.") Someone is singing along.

Wednesday, February 21, 2007

Have a Most Dolorous Lent!

Hmm, so looks like I'm giving up facebook and sweets for Lent. I was thinking of giving up the menfolk, but...yeah no. Beer was also suggested, but it's looking more and more like I'll be in Aber for Spring break (pending finding a couch/floor on which to sleep), and if there's only so many times in my life that I'll have a chance to drink Felinfoel, I'm not giving one of them up.

I'm also not giving up the web-logs. As demonstrated by my miserable failure of a sabbatical, the logs keep me sane. They are my place to vent.

"Logs?" you say. Well, yes. Like Geoff, I have a slightly-more-serious log for writing about... writing. It is very, very new. I needed to do something different.

Today's quote:

Garett: "Isn't that what you do in History, you make things up? I mean, you turn things into dragons, and Neil's writing about giants, and Mordu is writing about Parliaments...all these fictional creatures!"

I'm not actually writing about dragons in any way, shape, or form, but I was amused nonetheless.

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Monday, February 19, 2007

Speaking of "I do my own thing..."

I've been keeping this thing for three years. Anybody have any suggestions for the OUT OF CONTROL archives on the right hand of the page?

Five Things I Have Tried To Like Because My Friends Do

...and still just don't.

1. dinosaur comics (Although today's does remind me of Mr. Thompson: "A new lunar year, and guess who's still not married?")

2. White Russians

3. The Flaming Lips (Actually, the song of theirs playing on Pandora as I write this is not so annoying, but still... eh. I prefer Broken Social Scene, for reasons unclear even to me.)

4. Great Expectations (Quod Mother: "If you start to like Dickens because of that boy, I will be forever in his debt.")

5. The cookies Andrew brings to Calvert House.

Five Things I Have Discovered Because of My Friends:

1. xkcd

2. Iphigenie en Tauride, the first opera I honestly enjoyed.

3. Dar Williams (okay, so this isn't a recent discovery)

4. Amaretto sour (yummy).

5. The culinary possibilities of mushrooms.

Conclusion: Eh, whatever, I do my own thing. Although I really should try to like Dickens...

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Wednesday, February 14, 2007


Some quickie calculations:

350 wds/page * 25 pages = 8,750 words

8, 750 wds/3 days = 2,916.6666... wds/day

Brain = *poit*


Tuesday, February 13, 2007

Alice's First Snow Day

Tomorrow's 10:30 Latin class was canceled because the instructor isn't sure he'll be able to make it into Hyde Park.

This Californian is suitably impressed.

See below.

G: Neil, I think you should open a bakery with a Savonarola theme. You could call it Sav-on-a-Roll-a, and the logo could be a roll, with his head coming out.
A: "Our pastries are no vanities!"
N: We could have an eating contest and call it "Trial by Ordeal." "Bring your favorite Dominican!"

Also: ran into Josie on the way to campus this morning. "Alice! I think we need to start tying a rope between the cabin and the barn!" Nice to start the day with a reference to the Little House books, and she was right. It is certainly snowing.



Boys are stupid. Not only that, they are occasionally assholes.*

I was going to do a quote collection of one-liners from this week, but I can only remember two. The first, "Neil, you remind me of Ragnarok" is not particularly funny, and the second (giving roommate advice to Steph) should probably not be quoted too close to my own roommate. "Boyfriends, too, shall pass...unless they become fiances, in which case you can only pray, and loathe."

So, I present the following dialogue, titled "My Life is Like a Webcomic."

(Neil tries to imitate Alice by crossing his legs.)
A: Don't do that. I want to see your little viking babies when you're a grown-up medievalist.
N: My little viking babies?
A: They'd have little helmets...
N: Actually, if I had babies, I'd make them chain mail... what do you call them?
A: Onesies?
N: Yeah, chain mail onesies. Then I could control them with MAGNETS.

Of course, the webcomic of my life would be Questionable Content. I am *totally* Faye, I'm not sure if a certain gentleman is Martin or Pintsize.

NB: Tom is NOT stupid or an asshole, by the way. I don't want to talk about it on the internets but I don't want you ("you" means Larry, by the way) thinking that I'm complaining about him. He remains a perfect gentleman.

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Wednesday, February 07, 2007

Yesterday had the pleasant quality of being filled by chance encounters with friends, often multiple friends simultaneously. Accordingly, I went to the library to do some Latin translation, and ran into a certain gentleman particularly amenable to haberdashers (no, not Ian, the other one.) We were soon joined by Dan “will you still love me if I become a Marx scholar?” W., and then by a certain other Dan who will kill me if I give him an epithet.

As all four of us are history majors, conversation soon turned to our thesis preceptors. From preceptors it went to seminars, from seminars to political scientists, from political scientists to the historiography of political history, from historiography to particle physics… you get the idea. Somewhere in there, Dan complained that someone in his seminar had repeatedly accused him of writing a Political Science BA, as opposed to one for History.

Now, since Dan just *happens* to be simultaneously writing a Poli Sci MA thesis, you would think he would know the difference. Hence, the following conversation:

Dan: I simply informed them that my paper lacks all of the essential qualities of a Political Science paper.
Dan W: Like being wrong.

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Monday, February 05, 2007

Latin Midterm of DOOM!

Somewhere, in the recesses of my more intellectual mind, I know that it makes no dice with my Latin midterm if I was on top of my Machiavelli reading all week *and* turned in the pages for my BA on time.

The less logical part of me, however, says "you did plenty of work. You're doing just fine."

I am trying to crush that part of me with coffee and Seneca.

Saturday, February 03, 2007

Five Abstract Nouns I Use in My BA

1. Transformation
2. Liberation
3. Sanctification
4. Locality
5. The Divine.

The last one is a habit I particularly need to break.

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Friday, February 02, 2007

But I like Candlemas...

But mass just isn't happening today, because I have on my plate:

1) Latin class, for which I am woefully (woefully!) underprepared, (10:30)

2) Bio class (and yes, attendance is necessary. I checked the online power point, and I can't understand it without explanation), (11:30)

3) A Medieval Studies lecture that I really want to go to, (12:30)

4) I really should go to my latin instructor's office hours, but he hasn't responded to my e-mail, much to my frustration.

5) I have to write three more pages of my BA! And you all know that this isn't like writing your civ paper the day it is due.

For entertainment, I present this conversation, which took place online whilst I was re-writing several paragraphs.

Alice: How are you?
Dan: a li'l drunk
Dan: you?
Alice: painfully sober.
Dan: alas
Dan: i wrote fifteen pages of fresh material today, so my brain is a little cooked
Alice: ooh, now I'm sober and jealous.

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Thursday, February 01, 2007

It's been a while since I did one of these...

But it seemed like an appropriate subject, and an appropriate answer. Except for that sanctity thing...

"Who Would You Be In 1400 AD?"

The Prioress

You scored 7% Cardinal, 56% Monk, 58% Lady, and 48% Knight!

You are a moral person and are also highly intellectual. You like your solitude but are also kind and helpful to those around you. Guided by a belief in the goodness of mankind you will likely be christened a saint after your life is over.

You scored high as both the Lady and the Monk. You can try again to get a more precise description of either the Monk or the lady, or you can be happy that you're an individual.

My test tracked 4 variables How you compared to other people your age and gender:
free online datingfree online dating
You scored higher than 99% on Cardinal
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You scored higher than 99% on Monk
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You scored higher than 99% on Lady
free online datingfree online dating
You scored higher than 99% on Knight

Link: The Who Would You Be in 1400 AD Test written by KnightlyKnave on OkCupid, home of the The Dating Persona Test