Friday, August 19, 2005

Clio, where art thou?

The eminent blogger, Mr. Keilholtz, recently wrote a tidbit about American History seen through Catholic eyes. This brought to mind some of the funnier things that I've heard about history in the community college I attend.

My favorite fiction has to be the cats. The cats of the witches we burned, you see. We burnt the witches and their cats, slaughtering them by the hundreds. Once the cats were killed off (during the Inquisition), the rat population spiked, they swarmed - and spread the Black Death. We caused the decimation of the European population with our bigotry.

St. Thomas Aquinas was only a saint because he was a monk. The Church didn't even like him. In fact, his teachings bordered on heresy. But the Church tolerated him, because he was a monk - and thus we have his beautiful writings.

Dante didn't write the Inferno, Augustine did.

Monday, August 15, 2005

Count Your Blessings

A short while ago, Fr. ______ blessed the family-car. It is a Cadillac, DeVille, '89. This Cadillac is one of exceptional beauty, the interior consisting of plush leather seats, and the exterior of beautiful lines and bodywork - remember the princess with the problem with the peas? The car handles as delicately as she, but infinitely surpasses the beauty of the princess. Catch a princess with hubcaps like those? No sir!

So it was to my dismay, disbelief, and amusement that, after the blessing, the car broke down once: the alternator gave out.

Twice: the engine coolant began leaking, creating a lazy green pool of emerald hue on the gas-station asphalt. It was pretty to look at, but gazing at the flow left me with a surprisingly flat feeling.

Three times the charm: when driving along the accelerator suddenly ceased working, the steering locked up, and I ----- did not scream in panic. With thought of lighting speed, I calmly wrenched the steering wheel to the right (and I'm not quite sure "with herculean strength" couldn't be applied there) and stopped at shoulder, being fortuitously in the far-right lane to begin with. Then I stared at people who stared at me, and grinned at the the ones who looked conscience-stricken that they weren't stopping to offer assistance to a little girl. I felt quite queenly, but restrained the impulse to wave loftily.

But, to return to the point, the blessing is either defective or things would simply have been crazy beyond all belief without it. Or, perhaps, God is telling our family to go bio-diesel. In any case, I will now begin praying to St. Frances, patron saint of drivers - her guardian angel having illuminated her paths and ensured her safety in travels. I'm not quite clear as to whether the bubble of safety extends to the car from the driver, but I'm sure that any saint would be delighted to help a wandering soul. Goodness knows that few people go to them anymore.

"We do not pray to change divine decree, but only to obtain what God has decided will be obtained through prayer. In other words, as St. Gregory says, 'by asking, men deserve to receive what the all-powerful God has decreed from all eternity to give them.'"
St. Thomas Aquinas

Sunday, August 14, 2005

I am not now nor ever have been...

I would like to begin this blog with a disclaimer. A nearby source has unfairly intimated that this blog is an attempt to get Catholic boyfriend(s). I must admit that there are virtually no Catholic young men in the Bay Area, and this has caused dismay within the cell of Catholic maidens who piously pray each day before some patron saint of marriage and hunt at seminaries, using their rosaries as lassos to catch some unwitting seminarian, unsure of his vocation, who wanders outside safe grounds. "Fancy thaaaat," they drawl, "you sing the Te Deum? Oh. My. Gosh. Meeee tooooo! Now tell me truly, do you prefer the Phrygian or Mixolydian mode for your Gregorian chant? ... Don't you think the Didache is a fascinating document? Isn't Jerome just too-too amusing? Ah...John Chrysostom - don't you think he had some interesting things to say about marriage?"

Admirable. That sums it up. Admirable - but only in the dedication to the goal, and not the goal itself, because a husband is much more than a means to attain the end of a nice Catholic family with children hanging off the chandeliers and quoting Church fathers - backwards, in alphabetical order, according to date and subject matter. To my mind, such marriages are rather vampiric in nature and not at all healthy. So, kids, remember, when you see the marriage madness dancing about in the eyes of some person and conversation turns lovingly to Fundamentals of Catholic dogma --- run! Run like the dickens!