Because most philosophies that frown on reproduction don't survive.

Wednesday, June 22, 2011

Seven Quick Takes, Wednesday edition

1. Everyone offer lots of prayers for Jennifer Fulwiler, who is having her fifth child today. Four girls and a boy -- it don't get much better than that, sez I.

2. While you're at it, read Jen's take on the Father Corapi mess. I've never heard Father Corapi speak, so all I know about him is the highly negative fact that he chose to announce that he's stepping away from his priestly ministry on Father's Day, but some people feel very strongly about him, and Jen provides a nicely balanced analysis and conclusion:

And so this turn of events is upsetting to the thousands of us who were led home, at least in part, by this particular shepherd. As I thought about it and followed the commentary all weekend, I felt distress at the news. But I also sensed something else, something surprising, something good:


The truth that Fr. Corapi led me and so many others to did not originate with him, or from any man. The Catholic Church isn’t a bunch of guys who sit around and come up with brilliant insights about Jesus; its doctrines don’t come from the pope, the bishops, the priests, Fr. Corapi, or anyone else – they come from God himself. The men who make up the Magisterium are simply the tools God uses to convey his message.

3. I haven't written much lately, despite the numerous elegant and lucid posts that are bouncing around in my head. Here's what's been eating my time:

That would be my newly refinished screen door. It took a lot of woman-hours and more than half a can of marine spar varnish to get that shine, but nothing's too good for my front porch. I've got two more doors to work on now, doors on which the finish was so old (I'm guessing they hadn't been touched up in 80 years) that it hung in flakes which brushed off with the swipe of a hand. One more summer and they might have been unsalvageable.

My tip on getting that mirror-like shine: lots of thin coats of marine spar varnish, with a light sanding in between. It takes time, but boy is it worth it.

4. Gotta get a dehumidifier for the basement before we sprout black mold on everything. When I go downstairs my hair springs out like a bush, it's just that moist. Any recommendations on brand? Talk to me about the good, the bad, and the muggly.

5. Darwin and I went to a most excellent party this past weekend, at which Midsummer Night's Dream was read aloud (casting was done via random drawings from the casting hat). I was Titania, Queen of the Fairies; Darwin drew Hippolyta, Queen of the Amazons. Make of that what you will.

Why don't we have more Shakespeare reading parties? The ones I've attended have been hysterical. Maybe that's because we were reading comedies and not, say, Titus Andronicus.

6. Our ten-year anniversary is coming up, and we'd like to get a new bed. (You all will recall that a roach was the catalyst for the destruction of the last incumbent, almost exactly five years ago.) We'd like something of a higher quality than we normally buy, it being a significant anniversary and having five years to save up and all. Usually we Craigslist for our furniture needs, but we haven't found anything that we like there. Antique beds are usually full-sized, and we need a queen.

So where does one go to shop for good heirloom quality furniture? Neither Darwin nor I come from families where good furniture was purchased -- at least not in our generation. My family's mainstay was Goodwill or St. Vincent de Paul. It's possible that something fine might turn up used at one of the usual outlets, but our anniversary is next week. Time's running short.



Emily J. said...

1.Beautiful baby!

2. Can I come to your next Shakespeare reading party?

3. Commission Betty Duffy's man to make you a bed. Although with your fine start on refinishing, maybe you should become a carpenter yourself.

4. We had a dehumidifier in the basement of our last house. I don't remember the brand, but it worked wonders after we learned to drain it into an old deepsink instead of letting the water collect - and overfill - the holding tank in the back of the machine.

Kevin Hammer said...

Possible furniture source:

Brandon said...

I have a SoleusAir dehumidifier in my apartment which I use during humid times; in general I'm pleased with it (although I wish it had more control options), and it doesn't seem to add a crazy amount to my electric bill. (Very important to get one that explicitly has the EnergyStar label; dehumidifiers are essentially refrigerator+fan, so they can eat up a lot of electricity if you don't make sure they have energy-saving features.)

Jenny said...

Do you have Haverty's up there? They usually have some pretty nice, heavy-duty furniture. But I warn you, furniture makers seem to have forgotten that not everyone lives in houses that have 20x20 bedrooms, so bring your measuring tape.

WV: braver--Darwin was braver than I would be trying to kill a roach!

BettyDuffy said...

Don't know how much you want to spend but The Sampler makes very fine furniture. Take a look at their showroom then come to our house afterwards and we'll feed you.

And yes, Joe Duffy makes beds for less money, should you inquire, but he also works pretty slowly.

Bob the Ape said...

Reading Titus Andronicus can be a great deal of fun, if your mind works that way - it was certainly fun when I read it to The Authoress. Amidst the general blood-and-thunder over-the-top-ness, there are some bit that particularly stand out: such as the last scene, in which three people are killed in as many speeches; or the stage direction in Act III, Scene 1, "Enter a Messenger, with two heads, and a hand," which caused the reading to be suspended for several days on account of hysteria.

Anonymous said...

Re dehumidifier: Consider where you will be emptying the collection bin. Do you have sink in the basement? If so, go for the biggest bin ... you will need it in August. If not, consider the weight of the filled bin and the stairway you will ascend to empty the water ...

Also, make it a religious practice to empty the bin Every. Single. Day. in June-August, maybe into September if it's a hot year. You really don't want that bin to overflow or the machine to auto-shutdown on the most humid day of the summer.

Brandon said...

On the dehumidifier thing, many modern dehumidifiers have a possible hook-up for draining by hose (you sometimes have to supply the hose) -- mine does, for instance. So if you have a drain in the basement, that's definitely what you'd want to do. Otherwise, you'd definitely have to take Anonymous's advice.