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The Future Of The Catholic Church. April 20, 2008

Posted by littlebangtheory in Politics and Society.
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8 comments

Pope Benedict’s current visit to the United States has been punctuated by huge masses attending Huge Masses.

Or something.

And an interesting and perplexing problem came to light:

In our Right Now Culture, how can we serve Holy Communion to 46,000 communicants in fifteen minutes?

Hey, Busy Day, Busy People, right?

And with the rise of Protestant Mega-Churches, and now that we’ve put that pesky pedophilia thing to bed, um, behind us, er… just let’s say we’re gonna have to figure out how to move those Communicants along.

Here’s one scenario which I believe might be explored:

(disembodied voice from speaker: )

Welcome to McEucharist’s®, may I take your order?

(Driver: )

Yes, we’ll have four Hosts, please.

Will those be Classics or Cheez-Hosts®?

Classics, thank you.

(muted whining from back seat.)

Make that two Classics and two Cheez-Hosts®.

That’s two Classics and two Cheez-Hosts®. Anything to drink with that?

Yes, we’ll have, um, two wines and two medium holy waters.

I’m sorry, the wines are only for our commune-in customers. State law.

(quick conference in car)

Make that three holy waters and a Papal Shake®.

That’s two Classic hosts, two Cheez-Hosts®, three medium holy waters and a Papal Shake®. Anything else today?

No, that’s it.

Your tithing will be ten percent of your weekly gross income, please pull forward to the first collection basket, and thank you for visiting McEucharist’s.

(pause)

But… we tithed here yesterday, that would be twenty percent of our weekly gross income!

I’m sorry, but for your privacy, we don’t keep those records, except for the Fed… I mean, we don’t keep those records.

(muttered expletive deleted)

You know what, cancel the drive-through order, we’re coming in. If I’m gonna tithe another ten percent, I’m gonna have that God Damned glass of wine!

(tires squeal, fade to black.)

The North River April 19, 2008

Posted by littlebangtheory in Art and Nature.
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11 comments

A few minutes east of where I live, the North River flows into the Deerfield, coming southward through pastoral Colrain,

birthplace of the Toothbrush. We know this because, had it been invented elsewhere, it would have been called a teeth brush.

Anyway, just over the line into the town of Halifax, Vermont, the river’s character changes. The valley narrows, the farms become fewer and smaller, and the river is cloaked in a surround of hemlocks, imparting a deep green hue to the quickening waters:

There’s still plenty of snow along the banks, and with the air temperature in the mid-seventies, I hiked in a tee-shirt, plunging knee-deep through the lingering snow banks, savoring the sensorial non sequitur of an environmental hot fudge Sundae.

This is the beautiful Halifax Gorge, where the deep green waters of the North are funneled between sheer schist shores rising fifty feet above the flow:

Further upstream the gorge narrows, deepens, darkens as the river rages in its tumultuous transit of its confined chasm:

…and suddenly, there, there! From the foaming waters below me, Lizzy the Giant River Lizard reared her fabled and elusive head, and unlike when Sasquatch crossed the road in front of me with Jackie O under one arm, this time I was ready!

Oh, Happy Day! I’ll be famous, rich, RRRRRRRRIICCHHHHH!

…or maybe not. I mean, it’s quasi-posted, and photographic evidence of my being there might not be in my long-term Best Interest.

Nonetheless, it was a beautiful several hours spent in a beautiful place. Thank You, Mother Earth. Thank You, Father Sky.

And my heart-felt apologies to the young couple whom I, um, interrupted. Seemed a bit chilly for that…

My Li’l Buddies! April 19, 2008

Posted by littlebangtheory in Art and Nature, macro photos.
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5 comments

Finally, some local color – the Spring wildflowers are popping in the valleys just a bit south of here (where I’ve been working this past week.)

Colt’s Foot along the Westfield River:

Bloodroot in a nearby field:

…and a solitary Trout Lily growing at the edge of a rural lawn:

Welcome back, little ones – you’ve been missed!

This is my contribution to FranIAm’s Flower Roll Call post and its memeage-mimicking infectuosity!

Is Moose! April 18, 2008

Posted by littlebangtheory in Uncategorized.
9 comments

This morning, on the last miles of my epic trudge to work, I saw two VERY LARGE moose grazing along the Westfield River. I pulled over and fished out my (ever present) camera, but by the time I fired it up and dialed in the appropriate settings, the pair were gone.

So as a consolation prize, here’s a moose:

If this rings a bell, you’re old.

And to think, it’s Poetry Month!

Friday Kittehz Blogging: A Parable. April 18, 2008

Posted by littlebangtheory in Art and Nature, Love and Death.
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6 comments

A Kitteh sitz in a window, watching teh Birdez.

Kitteh thinkx, “I want them Birdez!  Only more birdez, and bigger onez!”

Ceiling Cat hears All.

Today, on the dimly-lit road to work, I saw Kitteh on her lawn, legs in a defensive crouch, back arched, hackles raised in a transparent attempt to look big and dominant…

Surrounded by a group of very unimpressed-looking wild turkeys, each several times its size.

The moral of this story is yours to discern.

Today’s Bridge. April 17, 2008

Posted by littlebangtheory in Art and Nature.
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5 comments

I’ve been working on the replacement of a bridge over the Middle Branch of the Westfield River:

The bridge is resisting collapse with a decided lack of enthusiasm, and I’m sure even that level of cooperation with human designs is grudging and finite.  So The State is replacing it, and I’m doing the layout.

Despite the hour-in-each-direction drive, I love this job.  This branch of the Westfield cascades down a narrow valley, coursing between vertically-laid planes of the native schist, carving smooth fin-like boundaries for its deep green channels.  And every short ways, the surrounding hills add their contributions to the flow:

And wildlife is abundant – I’ve seen deer, wild turkeys and a very large otter on my drives to and from work, as well as hawks and vultures (those cuties!)  Still waiting for a bear, though.

My Jeans. April 16, 2008

Posted by littlebangtheory in climbing, Love and Death, macro photos.
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5 comments

At work:

Naw, I’m not bored at all – why do you ask??

A Rissotto. April 16, 2008

Posted by littlebangtheory in Dinner with TCR.
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4 comments

Mahogany rice with walnuts and veggies:

Came out almost like a vegetable-fried-rice!

On The Plains Of Sunderland April 16, 2008

Posted by littlebangtheory in Art and Nature.
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5 comments

…It’s greening up.

Cool.

Why I Can’t Hate Texas. April 16, 2008

Posted by littlebangtheory in music.
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6 comments

…Despite it’s best efforts to poison my conceptual well.

Firstly, if you don’t love konagod, you should. He’s one (OK, two) cool guy(s) who tells it pretty much like t(he)y see(s) it. Combine his candor with his intellect, stir in his sense of humor and his love for cats, and I dare you not to blogroll him, if you haven’t already.

And then there’s Hill Country Gal over at Hill Country, who recently used a little of her Copious Excess Cool to post a clip of Sergio Mendes, which brought back memories of sitting on the rug in my parent’s living room, watching something like The Andy Williams Show and seeing this guy and his band, and thinking, “Wow, this is AT LEAST as cool as Herb Alpert!”

So here’s a little Sergio from over forty years ago, still kicking my ass. And I suggest you get up and dance, it’s only 2:44, and you know you want to!