- I'm teaching the free will problem this week, which means it's time to break out Harry Potter scenarios. Namely, was Harry really different from Voldemort because of a choice he'd made? Whether or not it helps the course, I am always amused by this.
- In my copious free time (not) I'm rereading some Anselm to get ready for my reading list. Today I read about ten chapters of Anselm's Monologium (In translation). Basically why God had to create the world out of nothing, how this was possible, various meanings of the word nothing, and how language was supposed to be understood. Sometimes these readings are quite nice. And sometimes not, obviously, but today was a good day on that front.
- I need to clean up. Seriously.
- I managed to be around for when the UPS man came today, and he actually had packages for me - books from Amazon (for research, nothing fun) as well as a gift Staples gave me when I "bought" my new desk chair - which still hasn't arrived.
- Kortirion has a double-drabble up over at tolkien_weekly, for the joint prompts of "grip" and "hilt." As lovely as the drabble is (and it is), the combination struck me as giggle-worthy because of the slash possibility. Yes, I am a twelve-year-old boy some days.
- The Daily Show has a lovely interview with Neil deGrasse Tyson (starts around fourteen minutes in). I can only repeat what Stewart said: Tyson 2012!!
- Cute baby dik-diks being seriously adorable.
- An old XKCD comic on internet geekery, quoted for truth.
- Higher Ed essay on evangelical Christian universities trying to balance their calling as a Christian school against being serious researchers. Longish, but worth the read.
- graffiti, because it made me smile
- the above-mentioned Patrick Stewart photo
“Our house was small, and when you grow up with domestic violence in a confined space you learn to gauge, very precisely, the temperature of situations. I knew exactly when the shouting was done and a hand was about to be raised – I also knew exactly when to insert a small body between the fist and her face, a skill no child should ever have to learn. Curiously, I never felt fear for myself and he never struck me, an odd moral imposition that would not allow him to strike a child. The situation was barely tolerable: I witnessed terrible things, which I knew were wrong, but there was nowhere to go for help. Worse, there were those who condoned the abuse. I heard police or ambulancemen, standing in our house, say, “She must have provoked him,” or, “Mrs Stewart, it takes two to make a fight.” They had no idea. The truth is my mother did nothing to deserve the violence she endured. She did not provoke my father, and even if she had, violence is an unacceptable way of dealing with conflict. Violence is a choice a man makes and he alone is responsible for it.”
(Obviously I don't accept the gender implications toward the end - women can be abusers, too - but that's a flea on the dog, I think. The sentiment is heart-breakingly true, and beautifully told - thank you, sir, for your courage.)