The world at our feet, thanks to the Internet. I just did a translation for an ambassador from an African nation serving in Europe. All in the space of an hour from receiving it by email. How cool is that?

• Several publicity companies have published newspapers or magazines for our area of the city, Urbanova, which is fairly well delineated, considering it is accessed by a single bridge over the Paraiba River. But all of them seem to fail in that they come across as too commercial. Too little journalistic effort, too much filler. They seem to say, we just want to get our name and service in your face. The latest one to come sliding under our door seems a bit better for the effort, but still, something’s missing.

• The Missus brewed some Earl Grey tea and whipped up some blueberry muffins — the homemade kind, not the package stuff, while I translated. One of those life-is-good moments, know what I mean?

• The Portuguese magazine (“Edification,” by translation) has been sidelined for a while, but it’s getting under my skin, wanting to show its face again. The new year would be a good time for its reappearance, but some missing pieces still need to come together.

• How is it we get wrong something so basic as standing and walking? A visit to a physical therapist yesterday, for a back muscle problem, pointed up that we often do the basic stuff badly. Feet aligned, knees bent and out, arms back. We learn bad habits quickly, soon forget what ought to be natural and right. Doesn’t take much effort to apply that to our spiritual lives, now does it? (The back is fine, thanks.)

• We’re in the era of the institution-bashers, the tearers-down, the deconstructionists. Their symbol is the wrecking ball. From Assuange and Michael Moore to closer-to-home guys who can only find fault with the church of God. They have an agenda, to mow down opposition so they can install their vision in whatever area they’ve set their eye on.

• Yesterday, I finished reading the poem, Sir Gawain and the Green Knight, in translation, since I couldn’t handle the Middle English from the 14th Century. Had to pick up Gawain, after reading Beowulf some months back. The translator is a spunky critic who, in his introduction, takes down many of his contemporary specialists from the 1960s. He doesn’t mind blasting away at their obtuseness, nor praising those whom he thinks hit the mark. “Horrendously awful,” “ponderous,” “biased and crotchety,” are some of his phrases. He’s delightful in his evaluations, which may well be correct, as far as this less-than-layman knows. He’s a man of earlier times when people actually held to opinions and defended them. I like those times far better than the present, in which all opinions are valid and none are wrong. What do you think?

2 thoughts on “The world at our feet: Lazy thoughts on a rainy day off

  1. I wonder… we read in Eclesiastes that there is nothing new under the sun. Do we look at the past through rose colored lenses?

    • Often the case, no doubt, Deirdre, though I’m usually one of those who have the fewest thoughts of the past, as forward-looking as I am. But maybe you’ve caught me here.

What do you think?