Day bgan with Inklings class. We talked about how enamoured Lewis is of the medieval model (which i was reminded of later with the whole King&Queen bit in Perelandra) and how his cosmology combines both the medieval model and the contemporary one, which means he gets them both wrong. This didn't exactly make me feel better, but i was glad to know that he was basing his ideas on something instead of just being stupid and wrong. I had, admittedly, been primed by my father's comments on the trilogy, but the bright shining Earth seen from the spaceship i know would have pissed me the fuck off regardless, and the model of the spheres that CZ showed us made the 'view from one side of the spaceship = bright, view from other side = dark' make sense. And we learned about the gnostic heresy that the soul falls from Heaven and picks up characteristics from each planet it hits on the way down.
Reflecting on our discussion today -- does the bad science of Out of the Silent Planet detract from the book's ability to elicit "willing suspension of disbelief"?She also gave us some interesting conceptions from ancient thinkers about why suicide is a moral evil.
One critic who thought so was the biologist (and Marxist) J. B. S. Haldane (d. 1964), who wrote a satirical review of the Ransom trilogy, in which he concludes:Mr. Lewis is often incorrect, as in his account of the gravitational field in the spaceship, of the atmosphere on Mars, the appearance of other planets from it, and so on. His accounts of supernatural intervention would have been more impressive had he known more of nature as it actually exists. Of course, the reason is clear enough. Christian mythology incorporated the cosmological theories current eighteen centuries ago. Dante found it a slight strain to combine this mythology with the facts known in his own day. Milton found it harder. Mr. Lewis finds it impossible.What do others think about this? I tried to get him off the hook by invoking storyteller's license; but does it work? Or is the "cognitive dissonance" too great a strain?
Thanks, Elizabeth, for introducing this question.
1) suicide as rejecting the gift of embodiment
2) God put you here with a purpose, so killing yourself is abandoning your post.
I glanced out my window getting ready to leave for dinner and the sunset under the dark blue sky was like a slow burn -- intense orange and pink.
I had a dinner meeting in King-Scales, where i had never been before. Is damn pretty. After the meeting i e-mailed Bobbie (English Department Secretary) about the end of semester department picnic and learned that the Field House was already booked for last day of classes (damn!) so we're having it Monday May 2, and she's looking into our suggestion of having The Distractions (the AMS band) perform again. And they're performing at the Rally Day show, which makes me happy -- not like i'm a groupie or anything ;)
Mmm, i downloaded a bajillion mp3s ages ago back when buffymusic.net wasn't dead, and i pulled the 470mb (130 songs) folder into WinAmp and i'm much enjoying. I should probably procure CDs of Four Star Mary, Velvet Chain, and Darling Violetta. And maybe Dashboard Prophets. (I do at least already own Bif Naked -- and okay that came out wrong.) And oh Christophe Beck is so good. Okay, i'm stopping now.
Before Skarda's class, talking about Angel Clare and Alec, Sarah used Whedonverse analogies and suggested that we could probably talk about every work we read this semester in terms of Whedonverse.
Following up on conversation with Meg:
- the anatomically correct chocolate heart (whose existence i know of thanks to someone -- probably athene -- linking a long time ago)
- You can't buy or sell a goat on eBay
Later that afternoon i went to give blood at the campis blood drive. When i tried a couple years ago my veins were bad that day. This time my iron was low -- 35% when the requirement is 38%. I'm not anemic (one of the voluinteers said 30% is anemic) but it does explain why i've been so annoyingly tired this week (well that and my sleep schedule o' shite) as well as the recurrent nagging headaches, and since i'm a picky vegetarian at college i wasn't particularly surprised.
One of the volunteers was being so hippy-dippy about it, though. "Someone is watching over you..." and suchlike. I do actually believe in a Creator who is personally involved in individual lives, but to listen to this woman one would easily get the impression that if i hadn't found out about my low iron right then i would have keeled over dead the following day. The whole staff was uber-attentive -- insisting that people stay a full 15 minutes, practically forcing juice on you, etc. I suppose it's better than shooing people off to fend for themselves, but it felt a bit excessive.
The nice lady who actually told me my iron was low recommended that i take a multivitamin. I get bothered by the idea of not being able to get adequate nutrition from food. (Though yeah, i know, being the picky eater that i am i should be all over supplements since it's easier than forcing myself to find and gag down food i don't particularly like.) I'm thinking that a reasonable solution would be to start waking up early enough to have a peanut butter bagel every morning and add raisins and orange juice to my diet.
While hanging out with the free food i met berryblast and learned (through reading the free literature) that i will always be too short for automated 2-unit blood donation (unless i transition to male ;) ).
I got a "Be Nice To Me: I Tried" sticker, which Kate told me later was the lamest sticker -- "E for Effort" and all that. I finally asked her what her improvement would be and she said one of those "Hi, My Name Is" stickers except it would say "I Failed Because:..." Yeah, because if i walked in with a sticker that said "I Failed," Kate would say "Your sticker is direct. I respect that," rather than pointing and laughing. Uh-huh.
In seminar we talked about oral vs. written text and discussed performance/presentation and set text and change and ownership of text. I actually contributed to the "what are the benefits of an oral tradition?" but i am so partial to written text, and i got to argue vigorously that people still take ownership of texts and reshape them (all the contemporary retellings) and that while oral performance is its own thing, the presentation of stories is constantly repeated and changed: witness the new picture books of traditional fairy tales that are published every year.
After dinner, Emma and i watched the rerun of Wednesday's Daily Show.
Yay for the blogosphere segment. Of course they namedropped Kos, Atrios, and Wonkette rather than, say, InstaPundit, Volokh, Andrew Sullivan, or any of them, but they talked about credentials, accountability, etc. and bloggers/journalists. "The first rule of journalism is: Don't talk about journalism. Or maybe that's Fight Club."
John Stewart: "Like it or not, these bloggers have already gained a certain legitimacy."
"The free market loves porn" Well, yeah. And the classic fact that the religious conservatives watch hours and hours of porn -- for the children.
Emma was watching for the Alan Cumming segment. Clearly, this fragrance is what everyone is going to get Emma for her birthday -- wait, only not, 'cause fucking expensive!
He [Alan Cumming] says, "It's a rich mix of peat fire, Scotch pine, Scotch whisky and burned rubber.Dude, i'm all over the dirt thing, but cigars? Gross.
"What could be better than smelling nice, feeling sexy and having a laugh."
[Perfumer Christopher] Brosius adds, "Alan loved the smell of burning wood and rubber, like the latex from a children's party balloon."
Talked with Emma for 2 hours afterward. I so enjoy real talking to people.
"inspiring intellectual discomfort" -interest listed in Kim Lyons' facebook profile
I like that.
"Happy Belated Loves Me Not Day" -Tall Anna, to me
(She and Eliza had seen the bottle of wine on my desk and i explained about the V-Day package.)
I finally met Mary and then went to see Kate in Uncommon Women, and others. I hadn't realized it was a Wendy Wasserstein play and that i had already read it. It's much more real when one sees it acted than when one reads it. And i want to have Carter's Ring-bearing babies. It wasn't my favorite play in the Wasserstein collection i read, but it's still a good play.
Afterwards, i hung out with some of the tipsy kids (which, really, is more fun than being drunk myself) and then watched the first 3 episode of Blackadder with Emma and Kate. The early season is so bad, but parts of it are so good. (And i got the Pope jokes in episode 3 the first time i watched it 'cause we did the schisms in high school.)
Oh, leaving the TV Studio, we saw flyers for auditions for Twelfth Night at UMass. The auditions have already happened, but the important thing is that this means i get to see a 5-College production of Twelfth Night (again -- 'cause MHC did one my first year).
Speaking of performances, in the days before V-weekend, lots of people were talking about being so excited about going to the V-Monologues -- both people who had never seen them and people who had seen them before and loved them. This so did not resonate with me. Watching The Naked I, thought, i felt like i kind of got it. (And that seems funny since i'm not trans, but the whole setup of the V-Monologues feels weird to me, like that's not how i interact/relate, but The Naked I reflected stories i was familiar with in a way that resonated with me.)
The pop-up for the Hartford Arts Council listing says:
Accompanying Davis' new play is a touching new monologue from Eve Ensler -- They Beat the Girl Out of My Boy...or So They Tried. Ensler creates a "chorus" of voices of former men who, having felt out of place in their bodies, dare to cross gender lines to become women and face the violence that often confronts those who blur the lines between male and female.Advocate article on that play
Additionally, The Good Body looks like something i could get into.
madbard (responding to Star Trek: First Contact):
If someone wants to pull off this kind of mucking around with the past, why bother with these delicate surgical strikes at key moments in history? For all the Borg's collective braininess, it never occured to Them that they could save themselves untold hassle by beaming back to 51 BC and cluster-bombing the Roman empire into rubble. Similarly, why couldn't the Klingons simply beam one warrior next to Picard's crib and knife the little bugger into arterial tragedy? The Federation is probably too namby-pamby about preserving the time-space continuum to resort to these tactics, but villains in the Star Trek universe should logically be in a wild race to out-time-travel each other into ever-further reaches of the past annhiliate everyone else's ancestor.jackichijouji:
Who says they haven't? I bet Q just goes around cleaning that kind of shit up.
Borg: "WE ARE THE BORG. RESISTANCE IS FUTILE. SEVEN IS SEXY."
Q: "Fuck that, you're not taking away my favorite playmate. *blasts into unexistence*"
Borg: "OH NOES."
Roman: "Thanksius! Sum Ianus Lucius Picardus."
Q: "You sure are."
lasultrix says, "There's no such language as Irish Gaelic. There's a language called Scots Gaelic, but the branch of the Gaelic languages spoken in Ireland is just called Irish."