Secular Music Thursday: Language of Your Love

Holly Near at the 1987 Philadelphia Folk Festival. One of my favorites.


our recipe database

I continue to add recipes to our Living Cookbook application. I’m up over 900 recipes now. Of course we’ll never come close to making all of them, but then who ever has made all of the recipes in The Joy of Cooking? And the real woman LivingCookbookwho was the basis for the character in Julie & Julia is certainly the exception in her quest to cook all of the recipes in Julia Child’s The Art of French Cooking, if she’s not simply one of a kind.

The point is that we have a wide selection of recipes to choose from, depending upon our inclination and mood. One of the great things about Living Cookbook is that it is a fully functional database, so I can search on whatever criteria I like. Recently I have added a lot of saved searches, so not only do I have searches by the main ingredient (halibut, sea bass, shrimp) and cuisine (Italian, Mexican, Middle Eastern), but I have searches by author (Giada, Marcela Valladolid, Rachael Ray), source (the Food Network program The Kitchen), and date.

Living Cookbook really is a useful part of my cooking routine.


on the Trinity

This past Sunday was the first Sunday after Pentecost, which is also Trinity Sunday. It means that, starting next Sunday, we’ll be seeing an awful lot of the color green until the first Sunday of Advent, which this year is 30 November.

Trinity Sunday is the only date on the Episcopal liturgical calendar (for Sundays at least) that is focused on doctrine. The thing is, there is no concept of the Trinity in the Bible. Yes, the lectionary for that day in Year A includes the Great Commission from Matthew, “baptizing them in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit,” but that does not imply a doctrine of the Trinity. In his book How Jesus Became God, Bart Ehrman makes a strong case that in the synoptic Gospels Jesus never claimed to be God. (John, of course, is a different matter, but it is later and has a very specific perspective.) Certainly Paul had no concept of the Trinity. The idea of the Trinity as we know it today didn’t reach maturity until the Council of Nicaea in 325 AD, and that council, gaveled to order by the emperor Constantine, was as much political as theological in its intent.

It struck me on Sunday that the doctrine of the Trinity fails the Occam’s Razor test. It is more complicated that it needs to be. How about this? God exists. Jesus brought us a new way to understand our relationship to God and each other. Good enough, perhaps.

This is nothing new to my long-time readers, but I am that Arian who is part of a grand Trinitarian tradition. It is a contradiction I think I am going to stop trying to explain.


red rubber ball

I wrote last week about how our refrigerator had died. I wrote that the compressor was here and the repairman was scheduled. He did show up on the appointed day. He checked out the compressor and found it had been damaged in transit. Worthless.

Yesterday I received a robo call from the repair company telling me that I needed to call to reschedule the appointment which was set for tomorrow. That was not a complete surprise because the replacement compressor did not show up on Friday as I had expected. The agent told me that the compressor was on back order, no surprise, and that it was not scheduled to ship until Friday 27 June, big, unpleasant surprise.

We have a fridge in the garage. This is a first world problem, I get that. And when I took Boss Boss Radio off of mute after talking to the agent, it was playing the closing strains of “Red Rubber Ball.”

That was nice.


Sacred Music Friday: Come Holy Ghost

Church of Saint Michael, Stillwater, MN. Music Director: Jayne Windnagel. Principal Organist: Joseph Clarke


the Amazon dilemma

A friend on Facebook asked if Amazon was the new Walmart. I don’t think that is a question. I think it’s a fact that is hard to dispute.

I do not shop at Walmart. I refuse to shop at Walmart. Walmart keeps prices low and profits high by squeezing both their employees and their suppliers. In the pre-Obamacare days they told employees who needed medical attention to avail themselves of the local county health system.

I spend a lot of money at Amazon. Yet Amazon’s poor treatment of their warehouse employees is well-documented. When the Hachette dispute arose, I downloaded the Barnes and Noble Nook app to my iPad thinking that I would read my next book on the Nook, as a small, insignificant, but symbolic protest. When that time came I found that the book I selected was four dollars more on the Nook than on the Kindle. Spending the additional four dollars, even as a protest, didn’t make sense to me, especially since I had a gift card credit on the books (excuse the unintended pun) at Amazon.

I really should be consistent in my approach to Walmart and Amazon. I’m not. I can’t justify that. I can’t justify supporting Amazon. But I do.

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farewell to the San Jose Rep

I learned today that the San Jose Repertory Theatre is shutting down. I first heard the news on a KQED-FM local news segment. I then saw the official statement of Facebook. Eerily, as of this afternoon, the Web site is fully up and running, promoting the next play that was due to open June 19.

This is sad news for Terry and me. We didn’t attend often, but always had a marvelous time when we did. We would check in to the Fairmont, have dinner, see the show, enjoy a late evening in our room, and then get room service breakfast the next morning before heading home. We will still do that at the end of August when we see Wicked courtesy of Nederlander’s Broadway San Jose, but it is a different experience to attend a locally produced play.

What a variety of shows we have seen. There was the serious, intense Splitting Infinity. We saw Two Pianos Four Hands, which was intelligent and witty. It also had a more serious side, however, exploring the experience of living a life centered around music, from childhood through trying to make a living as an adult by that means. The Marvelous Wonderettes was a kick which employed a couple of unusual devices, though mostly an excuse to perform fifties and sixties pop. All of the shows were time well spent.

We will miss the Rep.

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