Wednesday, October 31, 2012

Halloween Pictures

Our Jack O'Lantern

THe Neighbours made use of the plentiful October Snow!!!

The Scooby Doo gang -- Scooby, Scrappy, Velma, Daphne, and Fred (I was Shaggy)

Some Halloween Videos

and of course the classic of all halloween videos...


Saturday, October 13, 2012

Book 15 of 2012--A Nation Worth Ranting About

(Is it just me or has this pretty much become a book blog????)

I decided it was time for a light read.  And so this was an obvious choice.

Canada is a country with a strong history of political comedy.  For many of us the high water mark in this field was set by the Royal Canadian Air Farce (though admittedly their last few seasons were relatively poor).  But I think that many would admit that the current Clown Prince of Canadian political comedy is Rick Mercer.  Each week on his show The Rick Mercer Report he has a rant about some topic or another.  Here is the latest one:

Yes, sometimes Rick takes himself too seriously.  Far too seriously sometimes.  Sometimes he is just too earnest.  ANd certainly those wild camera movements get distracting at times.  But for me the weekly rant is one of the reasons I watch the show.  Which leads us to the book.

This is Rick's second book.  (here is the first)  Like the first it is a collection of his rants, but this one also includes some larger articles/stories and a selection of pictures from the show (pictures don't work so well on a KOBO though).  When I heard it had been released I promptly went looking for it.  And I am glad.  It was good for many laughs, but also (as is the nature of well done political comedy) is a source of thought provoking commentary.  Even non-Canadians would likely appreciate much of the book (though there is a lot of the content which requires a knowledge of the Canadian political and social scene).   And of course a memory of recent history certainly helps (in fact I could almost remember watching some of the rants--especially at the end of the book when the rants were from the last 12 months)

Wednesday, October 10, 2012

Book 14 of 2012 -- The Poems of Jesus Christ

This is one that popped up in one of those "others who bought this book also bought..." links.  Usually I ignore those lists completely but the title of this one intrigued me.

The author's base concept is I think sound.  Barnstone suggests that Jesus of Nazareth, like many great oral teachers, used poetic speech forms to help his words "stick" but that in the progression of translation (from spoken Aramaic to the Greek of the written Gospels on through the plurality of translations available today) the poetic nature of these teachings has been lost.  I agree.  I think that is a valid supposition.  Of course it is also unprovable and un-disprovable.  Barnstone then claims that this volume will return the poetic form to the words [commonly assigned to] of Jesus.

But In the end I am not sure it succeeds.  Poetry is based on the rhythm and conventions of its home language.  Poetry is very hard to translate and maintain the effect.  And just putting the English translations into lines doesn't quite do it.  Sometimes it works but other times, well not so much.  Still it will be a handy volume to have on hand for when I want a different translation or impression of a passage.  {Barnstone also include the Gospel of Thomas}

Saturday, October 06, 2012

Happy Thanksgiving!

It is Thanksgiving weekend here in Canada.  And so I decided it really was time to finish off the garden (well almost, we still have 2 tomato plants [which are really full of tomatoes] in the front flower bed to deal with -- anyone out there want some tomatoes????).  So this morning I went out and dug the potatoes.  Normally we dig them around Labour Day but this year we left them, other than a couple hills we dug and ate earlier:
 Lesson learned:  when you leave them in the ground that long potatoes can get REALLY BIG!  some of them are big enough to be a meal for us with one spud.

Here are the 3 biggest (or at least 3 of the biggest) beside a pair of gloves for comparison purposes:

I also finished off the carrots (which we had been digging as we used them thus far):

And I knew this already but sometimes garden carrots take on some really odd shapes:


Monday, October 01, 2012

Book 13 of 2012 -- Evolution Of the Word

A few weeks ago I saw that this book was now available.  And I resisted for almost a week before I bought it.  (one of the dangers of an e-reader is that it is oh so much easier to buy books).

In the end there was very little here that you would not pick up from other Borg books.  And half the text in the book is in fact the text of the New Testament books--text that is really quite easy for most of us to access after all.  The difference of course is the order that the books are in.  Also Borg gives an introduction to each book, which at the least includes an explanation for why he has placed that book in that part of his chronology.  But there is also some background to many of the books, and some commentary on the content.  Interestingly Borg, even while acknowledging that it is a minority opinion (whereas for most of the other books he claims to be going with the consensus/majority of scholarship), places Luke-Acts as very late, post 100 CE, one of the latest books to be written.

Overall it was a worthwhile book to get.  But, as I said, no earth-shattering new revelations (even the late date for Luke-Acts is something I heard suggested when I was in seminary and so was not new to me).