Conflits (Amiables) Perdus

Chris pointed out to me that our lovable madcap Saviour has been at it again, this time manifesting himself in the wood grain of the door to a “male toilet” at the local branch of Ikea, just outside Glasgow in Braehead. What makes this story unusual among the “face of Jesus seen on freezer/grilled cheese…

Mind Reels

I’m plucking out readings for a course on interpretive method, and since it’s my job to introduce plain old historical criticism I turned to obvious prominent reference works as possible sources for readings, or for guidance in my endeavor to find other such sources.    Neither Abingdon’s Dictionary of Biblical Interpretation nor the Anchor[-Yale] Bible…

The Other

While I was preoccupied with unpacking and conferring last week, the other (of the two topics I alluded to before) involved developments in the Google Book Empire. So, for instance, the NYTimes acknowledged the groundswell of resistance to the proposed settlement between Google and the Authors Guild, and also posed the question “Will [Digital] Books…

Pragmatics and Syntax of “Cheers”

So far as I have been able to observe, one says “Cheers!” over here:   (a) as an alternative to “Thanks!”   (b) as an alternative to “Goodbye”   (c) some other times for which I can’t account    Does it work as a response to someone else’s thank-you “cheers!” as well — that is, as an alternative…

One Of Two

Last week provided two distinct sets of convergent story and commentary for me to blog, both of which I missed due to general busyness. In the first, Tom called my attention to Ajay Kapur’s memos advocating Plutonomy. At the same time, Calvin Trillin’s op-ed in the NYTimes ascribed the financial collapse to “smart guys working…

Gkbrvnr,hm?

Mark and Nathan both pointed me to (different versions of) this helpful story from the BBC yesterday. Swamped with unpacking and conference-going, I would have missed it entirely. I’m doing pretty well, though; the main impediments to my understanding derive from the speed with which my local interlocutors speak and the extent to which they…

Shine A Light

It is, in the nature of the case, impossible to confirm that the questions and circumstances that the Guardian may not identify correspond to Trafigura and its tens-of-millions-of-pounds settlement with the plaintiffs who allege they were poisoned by toxic waste that Trafigura knowingly dumped. At the same time, we can look at Trafigura’s corporate track…

Kiss Me Quick

Kirsty MacColl would have been fifty today; there’s the annual meet-up at the memorial bench in Soho Square (then from 1 PM on at The Phoenix Artists Club, 1 Phoenix Street, Charing Cross Road). Wish I could be there, but I took out the DVD of her videos from the Hillhead Library as a gesture…

Bafflement

The biblical-studies constituency of Blogaria is all abuzz with the startling, dismaying news that the University of Sheffield is moving to dismantle its academic program in Bible. While the UK can boast a number of strong departments in this area, once you bracket the faculties of Oxford and Cambridge, Sheffield had to rank as one…