Sunday, August 06, 2006

A plan

I went to church today, which was the first time in many, many months, if not a year. I noted the irony to myself that I don't really believe as I looked at the impressive stained glass in the windows. I could have been in a museum, for that matter. At one point a woman waited in line to accept communion and her hair looked like a rainbow with the sun coming through the window. I wanted to point and shout miracle, but that's just not me. I was thinking what a powerful presence Christianity has in the world for centuries. It has wrecked nations and borne new ones, caused war, oppression, enlightenment and progress. It's amazing to think that faith can be that powerful. I like a good sermon, even though I fade in and out of them a lot. I think the point is, like many books or films or even conversations, there may be even a small kernel of an idea or thought to be taken away. Even though the minister was not the most charismatic, he made a point about being good. That's my motto: be good. L mentioned today that he would not mind going to the local UU church. I would like to. Maybe that would do me some good. What I like about the UU church is a sense of acceptance, even if you may have big questions and are skeptical about the big answers. At the end of the service a laywoman came up and said that they could bring communion to me next time, but I thanked her and said no. Taking communion while questioning the reality of god/Jesus/the afterlife is just plain wrong to me.

I finished Black Swan Green last night. Pair that with The Diary of Adrian Mole and you get a view of Britain in the 80's that is both realistic and funny in an upset stomach funny sort of way. I remember being in a charity shop in Harrow and hearing the shopmistress scoff at a young man who came in looking for socks. He was living with a large group of gypsies in a car park across town. I would see some of the caravan kids at the local McDonald's. I had a huge amount of respect for them, since they basically were putting 2 fingers up to the locals and to authority. I lived vicariously through them, since I tried to keep a low profile as an American. I wanted to blend, not blare as the tourists with the university sweatshirts and white, white sneakers riding the tube did.

In any case, I relished some of the experiences the character Jason from Mitchell's Black Swan Green had. I loved the interaction he had with the Flemish eccentric, and to back up a bit I loved some of the scenes in the first few chapters where Jason almost seemed like a character in a fairy tale, wandering in the woods. The story made me think of England a lot, and of times I felt bullied, but I mainly enjoyed it because Mitchell made me feel empathetic, and I cared about Jason.

I'm reading Here Lies the Librarian, a juvenile novel by Richard Peck. It's got a spunky girl in it and I love spunky girls. I especially love spunky girls from the past, and hell, being a story about a library also helps. This is a part of my "read-more-literature-based-on-your-work-dumbass-or-you'll-look-like-a-complete-twat" plan I am working on.

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