Twelve Tweets

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Resent the feeling I’m writing for @jack for free on his website, so I’m putting my Twitter-length thoughts here.

Anecdotally feel people are getting MORE into astrology as some demonstration or fuck you and I love it!

Already pissed about my smartass grandkids giving me some revisionist take on how Trump “actually did a lot of good”

I find it very boring to just sit and watch TV.  I don’t think I’m alone and I think this will lead to enormous changes.

Big Bang Theory is a less a comedy than a kind of therapy that helps American moms and dads love their gay sons

Feels impossible to express my main opinion, which is we don’t need everyone’s damn opinion on everything

What if Oprah runs and loses to Donald Trump?

Saying “you make me laugh” can either be loving or mean

My worst most evil opinion is I can’t help kind of liking Steve Bannon because he’s funny

Hard to really wrap your head around how unnecessary the movie The Trip To Spain is.  But here I am watching it.

Always enjoy the importance Drudge places on Bret Easton Ellis’s annual movie picks

Heard a sound outside like NRRNRNRNRNRNRN — it was a truck sucking the piss and shit out of the Port-A-Potties at the construction site!

Fun to try to eat a salad like it’s a bowl of chips


Mark Four

this is the fourth in our series on the Book Of Mark.

Mark One, about the scraps of Mark on Papyrus One.

Mark Two, an intro to Mark, and what’s going on with it.

Mark Three,  about “The Secret Gospel of Mark,” and now Mark Four, about J. B. Phillips.

Also He said to them, “Is a lamp brought to be put under a basket or under a bed? Is it not to be set on a lampstand? 22 For there is nothing hidden which will not be revealed, nor has anything been kept secret but that it should come to light.23 If anyone has ears to hear, let him hear.”

That’s how the King James Version does Mark 4:21.  Here’s how J. B. Philips does it:

Then he said to them,

“Is a lamp brought into the room to be put under a bucket or underneath the bed?  Surely it’s place is on the lamp-stand!  There is nothing hidden which is not meant to be made perfectly plain one day, and there are no secrets which are not meant one day to be common knowledge.  If a man has ears he should use them!

Wanting to know more about the guy I was trusting to translate my Mark for me, I read J. B.’s book:

It’s good and short and clearly written, much like Mark.  J. B.’s strongest point is that the Gospels seem true to him because, well, who could make this stuff up?

 

That kind of reminded me of the several times in the Quran where Allah says, hey, if you don’t believe this, let’s see you write a Quran.

Surprised to find, in the next Phillips I picked up, a description of my workplace.

I can’t say The Price Of Success was exactly a page-turner.  JB Phillips had a hard childhood, but through diligence earned himself a place at Cambridge, became an Anglican churchman, and started translating The New Testament during World War II.

No surprise that he was pals, or at least sometime correspondents, with C. S. Lewis.

I often heard Lewis’s Screwtape Letters recommended for young Christians in my youth.  When I finally got to the book (audiobook) I found it a really stiff and unattractive vision.  How did Christianity, which, when you get back to the source, was unquestionably weird, get claimed by stiff collar types like C. S. Lewis?

I found Ring Of Truth to be a more compelling read.

In Price of Success, Phillips is very open and honest about his struggles with depression.
I

No doubt hearing this, from a respected Christian leader in 1984, was really helpful to people.  The book was published two years after his death.

Am I allowed you quote you by the way, J. B.?

Thanks!

NEXT TIME:

Mark Five: Strange Tales Of Jesus!

 


Mary Anne Trump

One of our most popular posts is on Fred Trump, outrageous, villainous, smiling agent of chaos much like his son.

But we never really thought about Trump’s mother.  Mothers should be off limits maybe?  Even Trumps have mothers.  A hasty misreading of this Kellyanne Conway quote:

Got us to look into it.

Stunned to find Trump’s mother was a Gaelic-speaking immigrant from a remote Scottish island.

Hailing from the Outer Hebrides

Mary Anne MacLeod was born in Tong, on Lewis in the Outer Hebrides of Scotland, United Kingdom, in a pebbledashcroft house numbered “5 Tong”

Tong

She was raised in a Scottish Gaelic-speaking household with her second language being English, which she learned at Tong school where it was reported she was a star pupil. Mary attended the school up until the eighth grade. Her father was a crofter, fisherman and compulsory officer (truancy officer). According to one profile, she was “brought up in an environment marked by isolation, privation and gloom.”

Wow.  She’s pretty much from the Iron Islands.

You can see her interviewed in 1994 on Irish television, RTé, here.  She has an interesting accent.  She speaks of her love of Irish and Scottish music.

She claims Trump is meeting Steven Spielberg?

 


Dreamtime and Dreaming

This book is absolutely great.  A+.  

Read it because my explorations of Aboriginal art

led me to want to know more about the Dreamtime and the Dreaming concept.

Stanner is so thoughtful and patient.  This book is worth it for the essay on Aboriginal humor alone:

What do Aborigines think is funny?

One of Stanner’s points is the “abiding” quality of Aboriginal life: the sense that the world is not necessary here for us to change and improve it.  As Robert Manne says in his intro,

for them changelessness was both the desired and the anticipated state of the world.

Very pleased this book was published by my own Australian publisher, Black Inc Books

Leading lights of Australian lit.  

Some of W. E. H. Stanner’s essays were originally published by Australian National University Press as White Man Got No Dreaming (1979).  That’s not true, I thought, so I picked up a book about white man’s dreaming.

We certainly do have different ways of thinking about dreaming, and Dreamtime. 

 


Architecture

Reviewing my notes and recalling that one of my projects over the holidays was designing a house.