Friday, November 16, 2007

God Writes Straight with Crooked Lines

Michael Yon has this story of a neighborhood in Baghdad where Christians and their Muslim neighbors restored a cross on the neighborhood Catholic church and prepared it for the return of their Christian neighbors. The photo Yon posted several days ago was quite stunning, but I have to say that I found this post particularly touching. There are several images of the Muslim neighbors attending Mass in a show of support for their Catholic friends.

If you aren't aware of Michael Yon's efforts, definitely check out the stories and photos. He's an independent journalist who works for donations and embeds with miltary units throughout Iraq. If all of your war coverage has been coming from CNN or AP, you should take a look at what they aren't as eager to report.

Thursday, November 08, 2007

Nuns Having Fun

Hat tip to Matthew at CMR for this clip. It's a group of nuns in habit playing ultimate frisbee.

Well, Title IX was obviously good for something.

UPDATE: Here's the original source, a blog called NunEssential.

Wednesday, November 07, 2007

Big Surprise

It seems that my inner European matches my predominantly outer European as well.

Your Inner European is Irish!

Sprited and boisterous!
You drink everyone under the table.

Sunday, November 04, 2007

It's not a bad rating for a fledgling theologian...

...but not so good for a former technical writer. The general rule is to aim for an eighth-grade reader if you want a wide audience of people to understand what you're trying to communicate. As they say, don't use a big word when a diminutive one will do. (I have no idea who they are.)

Anyway, I didn't exactly hit the mark for accessibility.

Check the reading level of your blog!

HT to Julie D.

Friday, November 02, 2007

Snark: Mea Culpa?

This is a good day for the sorrowful mysteries.

I couple of incidents have opened my eyes to a potential character flaw. I won't go into detail, but one was from someone very close, and the other from someone I don't know. What both of these incidents revealed to me is that how I intend to be heard is sometimes not how I come across. This shouldn't be a surprise to me, especially when it comes to written communications via the Internet. However, those who know me well will know that the possibility I might have offended someone inadvertently caused me some anxiety and no small amount of reflection on my "style." (No, I'm not kidding or being flippant. I can be overly scrupulous when I believe I've offended someone.)

For the last year or so, I've tried to keep this blog a relatively snark-free zone. I figure that there's more than enough of that going around the blogosphere and that my adding to it was unnecessary: first, because I'm just not as witty as many of you out there, and second, because I often find it to be uncharitable. The second, to me, far outweighs the first in importance.

However, when I comment on other people's blogs, I have a slightly different approach. If the tone of the blog post is light hearted, I try to make my response light hearted. If the tone is sort of smart-alecky, I'll do the same. I still avoid being acerbic, antagonistic, or confrontational (although I have certainly failed on those points before). My humor tends toward the wry or terse comment, and I can see how that can sometimes come off as sarcastic or cynical. The latter is the last of my desires; I've been attempting to excise cynicism from my mindset ever since I returned to the faith. However, it does occasionally sneak in.

In any case, I've received an occasional sharp comment in my combox, and I've noticed far too often that people don't respond to my comments on their blogs (or respond in ways that surprise me), so I have to conclude that perhaps my attempts at humor have been weak, at best, or hurtful, at worst.

In any case, the fault is mine for writing in such a way that my intentions have been misunderstood. Mea maxima culpa. I hope you will accept my apology.

UPDATE: One more thing... I'm not a spiteful person. If something I wrote rubs you the wrong way, please attribute it to ignorance on my part rather than malice.

Thursday, November 01, 2007

Is there a JCL in the house?

Of course, I know the answer to that.

Mark, I have a couple of questions on canon law. Could you shoot me an email?

technicoid - at -

The Saudi Imperial March

Here's a priceless clip from Ace of Spades. The king of Saudi Arabia recently visited the UK, and he was received by the Queen's own Horse Guards. The band apparently had a special march just for the Saudi king.

HT to Dale Price.