Well, we’re back to the same old grind again. Classes have started at Clark; I was actually somewhat pleased to get on the shuttle in time to hear NPR announce that President Bush is encouraging Indonesia to keep up the fight against terrorism. They played a clip of him saying that Indonesia, “like the US, has felt the effects of terrorism,” but it seemed to me that it really should be the other way around. Honestly, Indonesia has experienced far more terrorism than the US and would have much more motivation than the US to stamp out terrorists. Not long ago 200 people were killed there in a terrorist attack, and this is hardly the only attack that has been staged. The worst part about hearing NPR was that President Bush’s clip sounded even more intelligent than the clip of Arnold (First Horseman of the Apocalypse) Schwarzenegger’s quote from a few weeks ago. The Dow was down, as was Nasdaq, but it is fairly early in the day yet.
Today we slept in for the first time in several weeks. Lack of sleeping in was mainly due to the fact that Saturday Ian had a Men’s Group which required getting up at 8 to attend; Sunday we rose at 9 for church as is becoming our sad, low-sleep custom. However, we both have today and tomorrow off, and are working hard to maximize our sleep time during those nights. After a restless night of tossing and turning I finally gave up and, taking my book, went out to the common room/kitchen to prepare myself some toast. It felt very domestic and calm to be able to sit in my pyjamas reading a book and eating toast with jam on it. At 11:20 Ian’s phone went off, and I rushed to answer it; alas, Ian had awoken already, but I answered it to hear Luke on the other end sounding apologetic and wanting to take us to Daka.
Today has rolled by slowly, slowly, slowly, despite the fact that I slept in and began doing chores shortly thereafter. Vacuuming has actually never bothered me, though the sound does become a bit wearing after a while… Still, to destroy spiders and dirt sacrifices must be made. The bathroom also sparkles with all the elbow grease Ian and I put into it. If only bathrooms would self-clean, like those handy ovens. The thought occurs, however, that you can’t heat up a bathroom really hot and clean it that way: autoclaving would leave a bathroom as ashes – clean but not particularly practical.
Some days refuse blogging. Others demand it. Today is not one of the latter, but I still have 25 minutes left until my thrilling Geology class (today: Mass Movements, as in rock slides, avalanches, etc.) with little else to do except read Supremacy by Stealth subtitled “Ten Rules for Managing the World,” in the Atlantic Monthly. But I really know all that stuff already, being Queen of the World and all, so I thought that I would do a blog instead.
I am wondering: why does it seem like so many fantasy books are set in medieval times? There is this allure, this far-off gleam of romanticism imbedded in our minds that associates Middle Ages and Magic. Perhaps we can more readily grant an author credibility when they set their impossibilities in a long passed time. There may also be an aspect to this in which we know the Middle Ages were fairly primitive (even compared to their predecessors, the Romans (for instance), due to various factors, the Black Plague not least among them) so we can also more easily accept the fact that magic happened then whereas now – and the future – belong more to the realm of science fiction. There are, of course, several notable exceptions. Piers Anthony’s Incarnations of Immortality are set in present day, and Mythago Wood, by Robert Holdstock, is set just post-WW II. Still, when you consider the preponderance of medieval-set fantasy stories you have to wonder what about that time period allows people to accept the impossibilities of fantasy more easily than in other settings. Any thoughts?
…to close the window when the temperature inside your room is 55 degrees F and the outside temperature is 43. Makes taking a shower feel awfully nice and warm though. I fear that this winter our room will become a cave, with no fresh air and – when it snows – little light penetrating. I shudder to think of our future power bills.
One more day of classes and Clark takes its random 4-day “Midterm break.” Actually I’m unsure of the duration of this break as it appears to be marked as a weekend and 2 days (stingy of Clark when WPI students get 10 days off)… Also, I don’t feel it’s much of a break when all of my classes have exams immediately thereafter. Why do they do this? BCS used to have lots of tests after Christmas break, and you get the feeling that teachers liked to give people time to “study” – i.e., forget all they learned. I am dismayed to find that professors here follow that same policy.
The weather today is invigorating. Wind to sweep you off your feet, rain thundering down all night, leaves thrown to the ground in a caucophony of reds, oranges, and yellows, only to be swept up again in a gust and flown high into the grey sky. Wheels spinning swiftly along through rain-wetted roads throwing up rainbows of drops and the sky just bright enough to promise a new day tomorrow. The temperature is perfect, making me feel alive and excited for life, longing to go out and capture the joy with my camera. I am trying but I simply cannot move fast enough: there is so much wonder and I cannot – haven’t the ability to – freeze it in time for eternity with my camera.
Man was made to be in relationships with other people because we were made in God’s image. He is always in communion with his Son and Spirit. In the same way He has given us this longing to love others, to truly know each other deeply and truly. Those people who close themselves or are for other reasons not given the opportunity to have those loving and honest relationships therefore are not whole people. Human contact is a necessity, for just as the best-cared for but unloved babies die, so we will fade away without human relationships. They are not as God designed us to be, and that causes people to seek ways of dulling the pain. Alcohol dulls it. Drugs hide it. Knives block it. Casual sex postpones it. Exercising control deceives us. But in our hearts we know that life is not right, and that something is missing until Christ fills it.