Short Good Friday

St Helen’s doesn’t have its Good Friday service till evening, so I’m working through the day. Ran this morning at about 6:00, two miles in light drizzle, coffee (no fruit — it’s Good Friday), Morning Prayer, work work work, hope I don’t forget the fast and have a snack before sunset while idling in the kitchen…

Happens This Week

Most important, keep my sister Holly in your thoughts. She’s having a hard time; Margaret is on her way to sit with her, but there doesn’t seem to be any particularly good news on the horizon.

Yesterday I sat down to clear out some backed-up (but not forgotten) marking, when a small but forceful avalanche of tasks with immediate deadlines descended on me. Holy Week is that way.

Short run this morning, at a leisurely pace. The weather is cold and unsettled, the dogs have been anxious and acting out (one has diarrhea), and I have to go to the Oxford Chrism Mass this morning, then Maundy Thursday Mass at St Nic’s this evening. At least the sermon is sorted.

But most of all, Holly…

No More Palms, Not Tenebrous Yet

Ran my two miles (plus a wee bit extra), coffee and fruit, Morning Prayer, a cup of coffee and pain aux raisins (why raisins? These are clearly (US/UK) raisins, French raisins secs), home to do some liturgical proofreading and email clearing. I’m getting that Holy Week feeling…

Rain, Not Run

Steady rain during running time this morning, which (along with the 6° chill) kept me indoors this morning. Coffee, fruit, Morning Prayer (in a few minutes), and a Palm Monday service latert this afternoon for some congregants who couldn’t get to church yesterday.

Ride On, Ride On

… but only after running your two miles, coffee and fruit breakfast, Morning Prayer, cleaning up, Palm Sunday procession and Mass. The sermon went down well — even I liked it — and now I’m winding down, though I’ll have some errands to run, and have a couple of errands to run. And Holy Week looms ahead —

You Might Think

…as Ric Ocasek and the Cars would say. You might think that Saturday would be a day of relief and relaxation — but you would be forgetting that I am a clergyman and this is the day before Palm Sunday and the onset of Holy Week. No rest for the sacred! This will be a zoo-ey week, but we’ll have Easter at the end of it, and that’s welcome every year.

I ran my two this morning, getting off to a decent pace before something caught my attention and slowed me to a walk, and then… Morning Prayer, hot coffee and breakfast, a little work, a meeting with the Rector to talk about Palm Sunday, lunch, mopping up the work from this morning… and now it’s nearly 3:00 and I haven’t done anything frivolous yet, much less anything relaxing or relieving.


Chilly drizzle? A drizzle chill? The temperature was not unreasonable this morning, but the air was just past the saturation point with ultra-light drizzle. That brought the perceived temperature down considerably, especially once one had run a bit more than half of one’s two miles. But hey, it was a satisfactory pace, and it came to an end. Coffee and fruit, Morning Prayer, more coffee at home, more research on disciplinarity, rhetoric, and philology. I worked out a sermon for Palm Sunday, and I tried to read a book I must evaluate, but I kept dozing…

Even a Blind Squirrel

I’m reading some Paul de Man these days for a particular project, and however culpable his Nazi collaboration and his self-reinvention are, he certainly hits some important marks. ‘Literature, instead of being taught only as a historical and humanistic subject, should be taught as a rhetoric and a poetics prior to being taught as a hermeneutics and a history.’ ‘Perhaps the fine, nearly imperceptible line that, in the present day, separates semioticians and grammarians from theoreticians of rhetoric — a line that frequently traverses one and the same author’s work — may be inextricably intertwined with the “waning” of modernity.’
Sure, I’d argue a point or two, here or there, but I was surprised to see how apposite his observations were.

Change But Not Decay

Margaret needed to take an early bus this morning, so I walked with her to the High Street stop and started my run from there this morning — meaning that I ran the opposite direction from my usual. It was a startling reminder of how great a difference that perspective makes. Up till the Ladybank Paddock stop (where I disembark from the X2 from Oxford), I just don’t see the parks and buildings and landmarks from the widdershins direction, and it was delightful.

Coffee and fruit, about to clean up and go to church for Morning Prayer, then resume reading and writing (maybe a little marking). Yesterday was swallowed with meetings and a protracted video-podcast interview, in which I suspect I spoke too incautiously on a number of topics, but there we are. It was a pleasant enough conversation, mostly about differential hermeneutics (about which any reader knows that I’ll talk indefinitely to anyone at any time). I’ll mention it when it’s released, if I’m not too embarrassed.

Alive, Two Miles at a Time

Somebody asked in an email, ‘What makes you feel alive?’ I’ve been writing an essay on drop-dead deadline, but the pressure hasn’t felt as vivid as has the excitement of putting thoughts together, and looking into what other people have thought on related topics. That makes me feel alive — the whizzing of nerve cells and synapses (I realise they don’t really make a whizzing sound, but in my imagination they do) as they pelt ideas around the vast vacant spaces my brain affords, bouncing off odd protrusions here or finding there a long, clear shot that even motivates my fingers to type out what’s gone on internally.

Oh, and I did run my two miles this morning, at a steady, grumbling pace. You’d think that after several years of this practice, my legs would treat it as no big deal, but you would be sadly wrong. Or at least, I’m sad that you’re wrong. My legs feel every bit as tired and resistant as they did two years ago. I will chalk this up to being old, will note that it’s a lot better than being dead (though not in the theological sense), and will move on to note that I enjoyed a hot breakfast, Morning Prayer, some grocery shopping, another cup of coffee, and more research and writing before heading off to a couple of church events and, this afternoon, a video-podcaster interview.

OK, Bearing Down

Ran my morning two miles (more than a mile before a couple of my relevant muscles, whose names I don’t know cos I’m not that kind of runner, loosened up), coffee and fruit, Morning Prayer, quick stop for groceries, second cup and then throwing myself headlong into writing. I pledge.