This life is given to you for repentance. Do not waste it in vain pursuits.
Saint Isaac of Syria

«— Thank You, God, for Somthing Bad!
—» Chatting

O Frabjous Day!

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Callooh! Callay! DrBacchus has a blog! Debuting with a trés cool script for user directories in Apache.

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Filed under: — Basil @ 8:46 am

«— Away
—» O Frabjous Day!

Thank You, God, for Somthing Bad!

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It is always difficult to eat one’s own words. They don’t taste so good going back down. But, here goes.

On rare occasions, I find that there are things that are best explained via divine intervention. It is very rare, and there are always natural explanations. Natural explanations that always hinge on accepting weirdness as mere coincidence. I experienced one of those rare divine coincidences tonight.

As I pulled out of my driveway journeying to Tennessee, I noticed trails of some dark liquid had been left previously by a vehicle, almost assuredly my own. This fact, plus a general oddness in the transmission since the last freeze, firmly placed in my gut a deep uneasiness. So, I decided the best thing to do was: 1) go to $gas_station, 2) get some fuel, 3) check transmission fluid; 4) if transmission fluid is less than optimum, more transmission fluid. Well, it did seem low (though not dry), so I added some more.

The next part is important. I silently prayed that something bad would happen before I got very far if the car was not going to make it to Tennessee. On the other side of the Kentucky River, which is about five to ten miles south of Nicholasville, I started getting major transmission slippage. The tach was ramping up to 4000 and 4500 RPM pulling up that steep incline. I pulled over, and I could smell burning transmission fluid.

I counted this as something bad and turned around. I also checked again the transmission fluid. (Remember that I added some transmission fluid at $gas_station.) It was bone dry.

I added the remainder of the transmission fluid and went very easy on the car, which got me back to Nicholasville. Thanks be to God for not making my requested sign something really bad or even something entirely awful. In Nicholasville, I added even more transmission fluid (a full quart), and this got me back to Wilmore.

Is there a natural explanation? Well, duh. The car just broke down. There’s a leak in the transmission somewhere, and tonight it just went all to hell. Is it all just a little too coincidental? For me, yes. Now, do I think that God’s up there twiddling around in everything that humans do? Not at all. But sometimes, there are things that are best explained by ascribing them to the almighty.

I just got off the phone with my folks, who are so desirous to see me that they are coming up here tomorrow. Oy. I guess I’ll need to call Fr. D. and tell him not to expect me after all.

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Filed under: — Basil @ 11:40 pm

«— The Next Chapter, Like the Last
—» Thank You, God, for Somthing Bad!

Away

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I’m off to see my parents for Thanksgiving. (The fourth Thursday of every November is a National Day of Thanksgiving in the United States.) If needed, my mobile number is available on my résumé. If you don’t know how to find that, you really are a moron.

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Filed under: — Basil @ 8:52 pm

«— You are making me very angry!
—» Away

The Next Chapter, Like the Last

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Cozy Café Girl is engaged. I wouldn’t be surprised or probably even hurt, but I sort of let my hopes get up a little higher this time. I mean really: She’s beautiful, intelligent, kind, outgoing. Way out of my league.

Must fight the desire to believe in a God of fate and determinism. This is not his fault. I am just a sad, lonely pile of conditioned responses. Nobody’s fault. Things just are the way they are.

If God intervened at all in normal people’s lives, surely he would have had the courtesy to kill me when I was young or happy.

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Filed under: — Basil @ 4:04 pm

«— Speechless
—» The Next Chapter, Like the Last

You are making me very angry!

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*GRINDS TEETH*

More stuffing of emotions to keep from exploding. Setting up a mailing list on Yahoo! Groups is extremely simple, and it’s free. Unfortunately for a list that is primarily religious in nature, it often included inappropriate advertisements for webcams and other nonsense which, evidently, require pictures of busty women pretending to be aroused.

So, after a few incidents of this, I decided the best course of action would be to move the list to a server where I have complete control over everything: my own. This seemed a perfectly logical decision. Of course, this is also the server on which I host the parish’s webserver and mailserver. But, if the list is specifically designed to allow members of the parish to inform one another of news and events, then it seems only logical right?

Logical is one thing. Simple is another. Compiling, installing, and configuring mailing list software is not at all simple. If you add to this the work that I did to create a simple-to-use, yet secure, web interface for subscribing and sending mail to the list, it took me around two months to get everything working smoothly. This is not including the time in which I did nothing on this project because I had no tuits. I have expended a lot of energy on this, with the belief that it would be of benefit to the parish community.

Fr. D. does not see the benefit to the parish community. I guess he only sees liability. Or perhaps he sees the loss of control inherent in networking as something to fear. Perhaps his negative associations with email continue to color his view of its usefulness. Whatever. He has unilaterally ordered that the existing mailing list and two that I was working on be discontinued immediately. What is really frustrating is that I am continuing a work that was approved almost two years ago, but Fr. D. acts like he did not know anything.

Fr. D. evidently has difficulty following what I do, even though I kept the the recipients of the mailing list updated with my actions. (He is, in fact, a recipient of the list, of course.) I would think that an email saying, “I have moved the old Lifegiver mailing list to the church’s server,” would have indicated exactly what I had done. Evidently not. Evidently the web pages that say the same thing do not communicate that, either. I am having great difficulty not concluding that my priest neither reads his webmaster’s email nor uses his own parish’s website.

More disturbing is the email that mentions a complaint with regard to the mailing list. A complaint? I can only think of one complaint that has been raised with me, as the administrator of the list. Needless to say, none of this makes me happy at all. In fact, it makes me very angry.

Must. Hold. Back. Fist. Of. Death.

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Filed under: — Basil @ 3:41 pm

«— The Delights of French Cinema
—» You are making me very angry!

Speechless

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James publishes his disappointment with me on Blogspot. I am really quite flabbergasted at the moment. James, I apologize for hurting you. It was not my intent.

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Filed under: — Basil @ 9:45 am

«— Which Theologian Are You?
—» Speechless

The Delights of French Cinema

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I just finished watching Amélie at the Davises’. I love la cinéma francaise. At least the French cinema that is good enough for export. Unlike Galois cigarettes, these exports always seem to be a delight to the senses, flavorful and aromatic. (Galois, by the way, are the most wretched cigarettes I’ve ever smoked. I think it must be a great French joke for them to be exported to the U.S., as I am sure they are the equivalent of the Basic or Doral brands.)

Amélie is the story of the title character, a shy girl who is raised in a very protective home, sans affection. As an adult, she is quite withdrawn, until she chances upon a child’s box of trinkets, left in her flat decades before. After seeing the joy of the now agéd original owner upon receipt of the box of memories, Amélie decides to make secretly increasing the happiness of others her mission in life. Then kismet intervenes and secretly plots to increase her own happiness.

Amélie is thoroughly enjoyable, from start to finish. (The Davises have now watched it three times.) Although I am not normally fond of plots that rely on improbable events leading to romance, this film takes the imagination captive by making the characters believable. Because the story is so thoroughly character driven, you accept the improbability of the romance. You become completely engaged in rooting for Amélie that you forget to ask if these things could really happen. Unless you are yourself so completely like Amélie, in which case it’s the one question you cannot escape.

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Filed under: — Basil @ 1:32 am

«— The Heisenslash Principle of Uncertainty
—» The Delights of French Cinema

Which Theologian Are You?

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Well, when I first took the “Which Theologian Are You?” quiz, I turned out to be John Calvin.

“[To] serve God properly we must learn to give up our own wills, thoughts, and desires. Why? Because otherwise we will be wise in our own conceits and will imagine that we can serve God with this or that, and thus spoil everything.”

You are John Calvin!
You’re the most intellectual and thoroughly intense theologian on the block. You know what
you’re talking about and you recommend people to ignore you at their own risk.
Yeah, baby, you know your stuff. You speak in riddles and confuse people for fun. Still,
this hurts your social skills a lot… and you end up always appearing arrogant and rude.

However, after going back and refining my answers a bit, I also came up with Erasmus.

“It is the chiefest point of happiness that a man is willing to be what he is.”

You are Desiderius Erasmus!
You have great love for others and will do just about anything to show it to them. You are tolerant
and avoid confrontations, so people generally are drawn to you. You are more quiet and reserved in
front of strangers, but around some people you open up. When things get tough, you like to meditate
alone. Unfortunately you often get things like “what a pansy,” or “you’re such a liberal.”

I think both seem appropriate, though I strive more for Erasmus. :)

Which theologian are you? A creation of Henderson.

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Filed under: — Basil @ 11:59 am

«— Back a Brother Up, Please
—» Which Theologian Are You?

The Heisenslash Principle of Uncertainty

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“The probability that a bit of data is true exists in an inverse proportion to the probability that it will be linked on /. If a bit actually gets linked from /., the latter probability increases to 100%, and the probability of truth decreases proportionally to 0%.”

I thought I would post that, so that it’s clear that it belongs to me. Just so that attribution is correct.

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Filed under: — Basil @ 1:59 pm