February 28th, 2005


Current reading

Right now, I'm reading Bury The Chains, by Adam Hochschild, a history of the movement to abolish the slave trade. It's a good read, but I have to keep myself at it. I came to this book with very high expectations after reading King Leopold's Ghost a few years ago. That was Hochschild's account of the rape of the Congo by Leopold, King of the Belgians, and others. It'll sear your eyeballs to read it.

I've also been reading The Story of the Church, by Clouse, Pierard, and Yamauchi. This is a popular history I picked up in Berean, mainly because Robert Clouse & Richard Pierard are both old professors of mine at ISU; in fact, Clouse was on my doctoral committee. It's a very good book, apart from my standard gripe about neglecting the second half-millennium of the Church's story.

Hannah gave me a belated Xmas present of Foxfire 7, the volume in the Foxfire series dealing with church people and customs. It's a very good review, with a lot of personal accounts. For those of us with an Appalachian connection, it's particularly interesting.

Not too long ago, I picked up a copy of Beowulf and the Critics, by J.R.R. Tolkien. Prior to Tolkien's ground-breaking study, "Beowulf: the Monsters and the Critics," he had written two longer versions of his research, never before published. Tolkien published very little original research in his lifetime. Reading any of his scholarly works is hard work but a special treat. He has one of the densest styles when handling his data I have ever encountered, but he is so solid in his conclusions! Well worth the effort.

Would anybody like to tell me what you're reading?

They don't call me Bishop Vocabularius fer nothin'

English Genius

You scored 100% Beginner, 93% Intermediate, 93% Advanced, and 83% Expert!
You did so extremely well, even I can't find a word to describe your excellence! You have the uncommon intelligence necessary to understand things that most people don't. You have an extensive vocabulary, and you're not afraid to use it properly! Way to go!

The Commonly Confused Words Test

Technical Question

So, I was wondering, here . . . Lacking much of a military background myself, I can't find the answer, and, you know . . . Okay, here's the deal.

Where did Col. (now Brig.) Jack O'Neal of Stargate Command learn all those nifty small-group tactical skills? I mean, the guy's AIR FORCE, for cryin' out loud. These guys fly planes, right? They don't do infantry stuff! I mean, sure, there's gotta be some AF component to our Special Forces, I suppose, but I don't know what they'd be. In the UK, they've got the SAS -- Special Air Services -- which is, I guess, an elite group outa the RAF.

But the guys wearing farts-n-darts? Anybody got a clue what the supposed background of the SG guys is supposed to be? Or is this another case of "we don't need no steenking research! We dooeng Sci Fi!"


Well, the excitement is finally beginning to build for our Three Peaks Adventure this summer. Last week, I ordered airline tickets for our eight hardy souls. Cincy to Detroit to London to Edinburgh; then London to Minneapolis to Cincy on the return.

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