The Epiphany Season
This teen-age girl has some scratches on her body from her modeling days, but other than that is in good condition.
Still voluptuous although she's been around the block a few times and is showing signs of wear around her joints.
Disturbing prose encountered while shopping for discount mannequins.
No arms or hands but a fantastic face and legs. Her olive complexion and full lips gives her an Mediterranean look.
In a discussion during this evening's Thanksgiving dinner my sister, Laura, heard us say something different.
I did a quick search, and, apparently, she is not the only one who has been confused about the "Dead Sea Squirrels."
Lots of concert halls have movable consoles, but now Madison, Wisconsin has a movable organ.
But the instrument's principal novelty is that it is movable. Since Overture Hall is intended as a multipurpose auditorium, suitable for musicals, opera and ballet as well as concerts, the 30-ton organ, mounted on 16 wheels and two sets of railroad tracks, can recede into an oversize cabinet to expand the stage and provide a more neutral backdrop.
-Oestreich, James R. "Everything's Up to Date in Madison, in Tune With Its New Overture Hall" (NYTimes 23 Nov 2004)
But Wisconsin? What's this organ doing up there?
The $1.1 million organ was a gift from his wife, Pleasant Rowland, creator of the American Girl doll.
Would anyone be upset if I started calling this the American Girl Organ? Or, what about the Pleasant American Girl Rowland (not affiliated with the Visser) Organ?
It's all coming together now. I can envision a scene in a horror movie where one of these American Girl dolls becomes possessed and chases a hapless organist to Madison where he is slowly crushed to death as the enormous facade rolls over him, inch by inch.
I don't really know why this comes to mind.
Tangents: Oestreich calls Saint-Saëns's "Organ" Symphony a "showpiece." For violinists a showpiece is something difficult like a Paganini Caprice; for organists a showpiece consists mostly of C major chords.
Rowland is not Roland
Rowland really isn't associated with Visser, now Visser Organs, anymore. And, note to self: when designing a web page for an organ builder, don't have the word cheap appear in the first line, nor a poorly embellished performance of David N. Johnson's Trumpet Tune in D which causes a listener who is familiar with the piece a great deal of consternation (does he mean to play it that way, or does he just not know the notes?).
There's a Visser-Rowland in Stamford, Connecticut's Fish Church.
I never thought that I could be guilty of rushing the season, but after growing extremely weary of the green website color and seeing that my church has put up Advent paraments in preparation for Sunday, I just can't take it any longer. It's time to at least get ready for Advent.
Plus, I really like the season of Advent. Some people like putting up Christmas lights. Maybe I just like candles.
Preparing for the preparation. I love it!
When I originally had the idea for the liturgical color-changing website, it wasn't very long before we were already in the "dog days of Pentecost." Not to mention that the site wasn't very big back then either, so it wasn't really very impressive when the whole thing changed color, I guess.
But behold now, for the first time in the history of Sinden.org, the entire website changes color: from green to purple!
I wrote down "PHC" in my calendar for today. Unfortunately, I can't remember what it stands for. Here are some guesses.
Oops. I think it was supposed to be a reminder to listen to an episode of a Prairie Home Companion online. Mystery solved. And good thing too. I've been thinking about this a lot lately. One could even say it was a:
I've taken a different approach to choosing organ voluntaries to this year's Christ the King Sunday. In the past I have been tempted to play things like William Walton's Crown Imperial and various and sundry coronation marches and trumpet tunes and whatnot.
This year, I have a growing sense that Jesus is already "king" in a lot of peoples' minds: king of success, king of hate and cultural insensitivity (examples abound, and I'd rather not link to any), king of the box office, and king of the White House (after he was already king of Texas?).
I think all of these approaches miss what is meant by Jesus' kingship. So does Jenee Woodard:
For me, the scriptures chosen for these Christ the King / Reign of Christ Sundays really deconstructs the whole "King"/imperial domination thing, perhaps even among those whose celebration are [sic] done in all sincerity. When we call JESUS king, are we saying that Jesus has the "properties" of a King, or that JESUS as king points toward a whole different understanding of reality.
I should add that I recently saw a movie about a king who had a lot of personal problems while womanizing, growing obese and inadvertently beginning Anglicanism.
With these things in mind, I've focused in on some aspects of the readings and am playing Samuel Barber's "Wondrous Love" variations. I find the last variation especially haunting and relevant to a renewed understanding of kingship.
The second thief in this weeks Gospel reading asks: "Jesus, remember me when you come into your kingdom." (Luke 23:42)
When we step back and remember with that thief that Jesus' kingdom is not this world, then it is irresponsible for us to try to make him king of this world.
It is irresponsible to dictate this weird concept of a world-king-Jesus to others. It is especially irresponsible when our government has this concept. His kingship is not one of violence, war or "crusades," but it is one of love, humility, and sacrifice.
Jesus is only king as the crucified. He's the counter-king; a subversive monarch. His power lies in sacrifice. This is what the second theif understood on the cross. Jesus' finding power in relinquishing power (sacrifice) doesn't make any sense; it's a paradox. Jesus' "Wondrous Love" is responsible for his kingship: he bore "the dreadful curse for my soul."
Underneath all the cacophonous trumpeting of the world, it's hard to hear this:
And when from death I'm free, I'll sing on, I'll sing on;
And when from death I'm free, I'll sing on.
And when from death I'm free, I'll sing and joyful be;
And through eternity, I'll sing on, I'll sing on;
And through eternity, I'll sing on.
-The final verse of "Wondrous Love:"
Here's to a quieter, more introspective Christ the King Sunday.
Update: After looking at the hymns again I've decided to add Ralph Vaughan Williams Prelude on "Hyfrydol" as the concluding voluntary. So, take everything I was saying above with a grain of salt, I guess.
Tangent: This was my tactic for literature organization in childhood. Take that library science majors!
These were some of my favorite lines from Bubs:
It's in a better place. Rather, it's in the same place, but now it's got a big hole in it.
Look Strongbad, my mouth was a broken JPEG. I had no choice.
If you don't know what I'm talking about, you're missing out.
You can't get a paper cut on your lip with an email.
Then again, you can't get scratch and sniff stickers with it either.
Truly, this is a dilemma.
And man does my lip hurt.
Sibelius Tangents!: Osmo Vanska is recording the complete Beethoven Symphonies with the Minnesota Orchestra!
Labels: Jean Sibelius
Report No. 904 includes a very pithy statement which astutely summarizes what Calvinistic protestants have done on Sunday mornings for hundreds of (okay, maybe just the last hundred) years.
Mystery Worshippers answer several questions after their mystery worship experience. One of the questions is, "Was the worship stiff-upper-lip, happy clappy, or what?"
The answer, by Mark Wuntoo (probably not his real name, fortunately), will be a very significant addition to my liturgical vocabulary.
It was a non-conformist hymn sandwich.
I guess the term, "hymn sandwich" has probably been around for a while, but, as far as I can tell, this is the first time I've come across it.
Hymn sandwich. Mmmm. Now, is it weird that I am getting hungry?
Tangent: For the record, here is Mark
"As it is written in the prophet Isaiah, 'See, I am sending my messenger ahead of you, who will prepare your way;'"
Tangent: Bart Simpson seems to be singing a Polish football (i.e., Soccer) hymn.
One of my favorite college roommates (okay, my only roommate) is the only person I know who stars in his own DVD.
Searches for his name reveal two things: violin playing and magic shops selling his illusion.
Can a brilliant musician also come up with a way to restore a torn card?
Tangent: As wonderful as success is, no one ever tells you it's going to involve websites that feature "Cheapest [YOUR NAME HERE] Online UK."
Tangent: Google thinks that "favorite college roommates" in German is "Lieblingshochschulzimmergenossen." If this is true, life is better than I previously imagined.
In case you haven't heard, God hates figs. But he's okay with other small dark fruit products:
God is all for prunes. God wants you to be regular. God often thinks that if Isaiah had experienced more frequent bowel movements, he would have been a lot more fun to be around.
Seafood Tangent: Jesus wore a crown of thorns, not a lobster bib. God Hates Shrimp.
John Wilkes Booth, Lee Harvey Oswald, John Hinckley Jr - where are you now that we need you?
see also: Baker, Nicholson - Checkpoint
From this week's edition of Anglicans Online comes this amusing story about life, death and religion. They related this to All Saints' Day, but I can't remember how they did that:
I was walking across a bridge one day, and I came across a man standing on the rail, about to jump. I said "Stop! Don't do it!"
"Why not?" he said.
I said, "Well, there's so much to live for!"
He said, "Like what?"
I said, "Well . . . are you religious or atheist?"
He said, "I am quite religious."
I said, "Me too! Are you a Christian?"
He said, "I am."
I said, "Me too! Are you Catholic or Protestant?"
He said, "Protestant."
I said, "Me too! Are you Episcopalian or Baptist?"
He said, "Baptist!"
I said, "What a happy coincidence. So am I. Are you Baptist Church of God or Baptist Church of the Lord?"
He said, "Baptist Church of God!"
I said, "Amen! Are you Original Baptist Church of God, or are you Reformed Baptist Church of God?"
He said, "Reformed Baptist Church of God!"
I said, "Amen and Amen! Are you Reformed Baptist Church of God, Reformation of 1879, or Reformed Baptist Church of God, Reformation of 1915?"
He said, "Reformed Baptist Church of God, Reformation of 1915!"
I said, "Die, Godless heretic!" and pushed him off the rail.
Somehow, I managed to publish this with the title "oheretics - Godless." (It has since been corrected.) This would probably be a good name for an Irish pub: O'heretics.
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Yes, but they're not the kind you buy on Wheel of Fortune.
the owner of a bower at Bucklesfordberry?
Full daintily it is dight.
interested in touch lamps?
And fountain pens.