Sunday, March 28, 2021

Recent acquisitions

 I've said before that I'm a hoarder but I'm exonerated by the fact that I'm primarily a book hoarder, which is the most forgivable type of hoarding (according to my sister). A further exoneration is that I'm a cheapskate -- I almost never pay more than six bucks for a book -- so my book hoarding hobby is more a problem of storage space than of money. Recently, however, I broke down and bought three books I've been wanting for, like, ever, but which never dropped down to a reasonable price. I spent a hundred bucks on three books. I'm still kind of shaking about it. But I've also received some from publishers to consider as textbooks, and bought others more in line with my normal cheapskate spending habits.

William Lane Craig and J.P. Moreland, eds., The Blackwell Companion to Natural Theology.

William Desmond, Being and the Between.

Gary B. Ferngren, Medicine and Religion: A Historical Introduction.

Gary B. Ferngren, ed., Science and Religion: A Historical Introduction, 2nd edition.

Jeff Hardin, Ronald L. Numbers, and Ronald A. Binzley, The Warfare between Science and Religion: The Idea That Wouldn't Die.

Stephen J. Shoemaker, A Prophet Has Appeared: The Rise of Islam through Christian and Jewish Eyes: A Sourcebook.

N.T. Wright, The Resurrection of the Son of God: Christian Origins and the Question of God, vol. 3.

Tuesday, March 23, 2021


 I made a doctor's appointment with the VA for today. They outsourced it -- they call it the community something or other -- to a non-VA clinic. It took a couple months from the time I requested it to the actual appointment. I show up and they have no record of it. It turns out that they changed it to another clinic in another city and changed the time to last week when I wouldn't have been able to go. And they did this without informing me of the change. Because of this appointment, we couldn't go do certain things this week. So I'm frustrated.

Rant over.

Saturday, March 13, 2021


Once on this blog I wrote that the second movement of the New World Symphony is what got me into Dvorak. Similarly, the first movement of Piano Concerto #1 is what got me into Rautavaara. It's not completely atonal, but it's not exactly tonal either. The glorious NOISE at 0:53 makes me hyperventilate and my heart starts beating faster. Calling a piece of art transcendent is cliché and artificial, but I don't know another word that will do the trick here. This is one of the greatest pieces of music I've ever heard.

I love the YouTube phenomenon of putting these great pieces of music on with the accompanying video following the sheet music. But when I got to 8:52 and saw that it said "Untertasten Cluster mit den Arm" I thought, no. No way. They don't pound their entire forearms into the piano to play this piece. So I looked for a live performance of it and . . . yes; yes they do.

Monday, March 1, 2021


I've stopped updating my GoodReads list on the sidebar, but just in case anyone's wondering I'm four-fifths of the way through reading The Chronicles of Prydain to my son, and might start the Earthsea books with him next. On my own front, I've just finished Awake in the Night Land and I'm in the midst of A Journey to the Center of the Earth.