February 1st, 2012


Continuing Education

For those interested in such things, here is the summary of my 2011 Continuing Education report to the Board of Ordained Ministry. It shows what I was reading and what events I was attending. Some of my colleagues might be interested to see what someone else does to keep up.

The History of the Medieval World, by Susan Wise Bauer
God’s Secretaries: the making of the King James Bible, by Adam Nicolson
Searching for Whitopia, by Rich Benjamin
The Abacus and the Cross, by Nancy Marie Brown
The 5 Love Languages, by Gary Chapman
Historical Atlas of Native Americans
Names on the Land: a historical account of place-names in America, by George R. Stewart
“On ‘Germanic,’ by Daniela Fruscione, in The Heroic Age, Issue 14
“Aethelberht’s and Alfred’s Two Skulls,” by Lisi Oliver, in The Heroic Age, Issue 14
“Ealles Englalandes Cyncingc: Cnut’s Territorial Kingship and Wulfstan’s Paronomastic Play," by Jay Paul Gates, in The Heroic Age, Issue 14
“The King’s Closest Counselor: The Legal Basis of Walhtheow’s Comments to Hrothgar, Beowulf 1169-87," by Nathan A. Breen, in The Heroic Age, Issue 14
Charles Williams: Essential Writings in Spirituality and Theology, Charles Hefling, ed.
Mr. Speaker! The life and times of Thomas B. Reed, the man who broke the filibuster, by James Grant
The Cat in Ancient Egypt, by Jaromir Malek
The Lombard Laws, by Katherine Fischer Drew
The Scotch-Irish: a social history, by James G. Leyburn
The Big Scrum: how Teddy Roosevelt saved football, by John J. Miller
The History of the Ancient World, by Susan Wise Bauer
Catching Fire: how cooking made us human, by Richard Wrangham

District Venturing Leader Training (January), 5 contact hours
Confessing Movement seminar (March), 2 contact hours
EFUMC Youth Protection training (May), 1 contact hour
Wilderness and Remote First Aid Recertification (November), 16 contact hours
ARC CPR Recertification (December), 3 contact hours
compass rose

Life's a beach -- and a cave, and a trail

Spent some time this afternoon nailing down dates and reservations for various things.

First up: I'm taking some vacation in March. I will be camping at First Landing State Park in Virginia Beach the nights of March 16, 17, 18, and 19. That allows me Saturday, Sunday, and Monday to spend with daughter, son-in-law, and grandson.

Next: Made a reservation for our Venturers to go caving at Marengo Cave April 13-14. We will enjoy two short walking tours plus a couple of hours of wild caving. All State-owned caves in Indiana are shut down because of White Nose Syndrome -- a threat to brown bats. Privately-owned Squire Boone Caverns and Marengo Cave are still offering underground experiences. Marengo is the only one offering any wild caving.

Finally: I made some inquiries regarding Cumberland Gap for our Crew's Shakedown. I'd like to go over Memorial Day weekend, but the school calendar isn't very friendly. We could leave RIGHT AFTER school on a Friday and get down yonder by 9:00 p.m. or so. Do three days in the backcountry, then drive home Monday evening. Be home about 10:00 p.m.? The problem with this is, the trail is pretty demanding. First day is 3.5 miles with a LOT of elevation gain. Last day is 4.5 miles, pretty much downhill. But between those two days is 9.9 miles along the ridge separating Kentucky from Virginia. It's doable in one day, but as a shakedown, teaching out-of-shape people the basics of backpacking, it's a killer. I'd MUCH rather do 4.8 miles the second day and 5.1 miles the next. So, I've go to mull this over. The school wasn't very helpful last year, since I was asking that the kids get out of a day of finals. If the Friday before Memorial Day isn't in Finals Week, though, I might be able to spring our Venturers and get a four-day, rather than three-day shakedown for them. Hope to get this resolved this week. If we have to wait till school's out, then we're hiking the trail the second week in June, and the crowded summer schedule starts to weird us out; on the other hand, I wouldn't have to miss a Sunday in order to take them. Hmmm, hmmmm, and hmmmm.
humped zebra

He's just a bit different, is our Mitch

Indiana Governor Mitch Daniels has just signed the Right to Work law the Republicans pushed through the General Assembly. Daniels has fought hard for this. I know people who see this as a declaration of war; others think it's a great thing. The thing that puzzles me is, Why now? Daniels has never been an ideologue about these things. Sure, he's conservative, but in the past he saw enacting Right to Work as unnecessary and provocative.

Still, Daniels has fought some odd battles before. He began his administration by nanny-stating us all about being fat. Then there was the whole time zone fracas, which I'm not sure I can even explain to a non-Hoosier. He picked those fights because he could see a direct cost benefit to Indiana from Hoosiers losing weight and changing times. So I presume he's become a convert to Right to Work because he's crunched the numbers and thinks it'll make a big enough difference to be worth taking lumps over it.

I can respect that argument, even as I scratch my head over it. It may not follow the conventional political wisdom, but that's our Governor.