Sunday, July 29, 2007

Torrential Downpour: More Business

My recurring dreams

I have frequent dreams that I'm involved in the theater. Usually in my dreams I'm a stage actor, but sometimes I'm involved in other ways (last night I was sort of the director in a dinner theater version of King Lear; the producer/star actor disagreed with my idea that the throne should be moved from center stage to the side).

These dreams about plays have various themes. Often I would find myself cast as an actor in a play in which I didn't know the words, the blocking, or, frankly, the play. But there have been many other themes.

The thing is, I actually have only acted in two plays, the last in 1999. I don't know why I continue to have these dreams about working in theater.

Surely there's something there about playing roles, acting, putting on a show, and the tension this causes for me. But what else.

Bringing the C to the OCD

I can see why people with OCD come with the compulsions. When you're busy checking the stove and the lock by numbers divisible by three and frequently washing your hands, you have less time to spend with the pure O obsessions.

Dostoevsky is my master

In the future I may take some time to talk about why Dostoevsky is my master in all things. The ideas, the themes, the talking, the characters, the dialogical nature of it all, it all furrows into the depths of my soul and stays planted there, ready to burst into plant when the time comes.


Read this NY Times article on a farm animal sanctuary.

Read "Thomas Bloor's top 10 Tales of Metamorphosis" at The Guardian.

Here's a book critic (Ron Charles) that doesn't like Harry Potter (I've never read Harry Potter and probably never will).

It's difficult to get rid of books that you actually don't need (Inside Higher Ed).

The Valve talks about The Simpsons.

The Onion always has cutting insight into our society: read these two articles.

"Study: Iraqis May Experience Sadness When Friends, Relatives Die"

This gets at so much of the way people in America talk about the suffering of this war. Always in war there is a dehumanization effect: one side doesn't treat the other side as fully human, as fully capable of human thought and feeling. It has happened in past wars (see General Westmoreland's statement that "The Oriental doesn't put the same high price on life as does a Westerner. Life is plentiful. Life is cheap in the Orient"). It happens now. Let us remember what binds us: we are all human, and we all suffer. It's sad (but expected) that The Onion is the best source capable of pointing this out in a piercing way.

I'm not currently very good at talking eloquently about pacifism. Once I finish up Dostoevsky's Demons, I'll be reading some essays by John Howard Yoder (lent to me by a friend and pastor) about Christian pacifism. I want to find better words to express the deep thought and emotion I feel.

And a little lighter:

"New Sitcom Pulls Back the Envelope"

I always wonder of the stars of the conventional sitcoms feel like they're doing something important, or if they realize they're doing trash.

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