It has been quite the spell. In a nutshell, I’ve been busy trying to handle the chimera that is online-only schooling while trying to stay upbeat and positive, even as the world seems to be descending into madness.
They gave me Public Speaking again this year, and, as we are beginning our persuasive speeches, I reasoned I would illustrate to my young charges how to deliver an argumentative, persuasive speech. The text is contained below and you can watch the video on my YouTube channel here: BBEG: Delivering an Argument
If I still have a job after this, well, jolly good. If not, well, jolly good.
Continue reading “My Attempt to Convince the First Consul of New Mexico to Re-Open Schools”
Skip to 33:15 for a dosage of NMMI reality and what sort of sage advice I impart to future cadets.
Also, that hair. What the hell…
Hey there folks,
No doubt many of you are wondering – my long-time friends, family, and my newer readers – what in blazes I’m getting myself into these days. Forgive the radio silence, family and friends, trying to contact me or waiting for a call. To borrow an iconic line from President Obama, “Aaaaah, let me be clear! (hand waves about needlessly) Change is good!”
Fret not; this post has nothing to do with politics.
No, this post is a recap of my past month; a retelling of the shenanigans and string pulling your erstwhile Monkey has been getting himself into. Machinations, ahoy!
Continue reading “Change We Can Believe In”
Hey there folks,
At the time of this writing, I have been sitting in various airports throughout Mexico and Texas for the past ~24 hours, having been unable to return home to my beloved New Mexico as was the intention. Through a series of rather unfortunate events, human error, and the will of Mother Nature, it’s been one hell of a day in travel.
Continue reading “Murphy’s Law”
I’ll just leave this here…
I started growing my hair out 4 1/2 years ago, never once trimming or cutting it since. After much thought and prayer, the time was right to lop off those luscious golden locks and donate them to those who would make better use of them.
Hair will grow back, but I like to imagine the smiles of those kids getting a new wig will be timeless.
Disclaimer: Free-write is a technique I learned from a good friend of mine, an excellent writer – far better than myself – and something he does often. You simply write as you think/feel and whatever happens, well, it happens. When I feel blocked, I let loose with all guns and see what happens. In the madness, there might be a nugget of wisdom. What follows is a free-write, full of vulgarities, slurs, and random thoughts throughout the entire wall of text. There is a thread throughout this entire mess, but you must take care to follow it, lest you end up at the Minotaur’s lair.
For whatever reason, I listened to this on repeat until I felt finished. Give it a listen: Elton John, Tiny Dancer.
Continue reading “Free-Write”
Hey there folks,
When most people learned I was headed to Ireland, I was met with the usual. “Oh you’ve just got to go the Irish Alcoholic Producer of International Fame’s brewery/distillery!” Which is all well and good, because I welcome wholesome advice, but there is plenty more to see in Ireland than just getting smashed before a +2000km walk. Ireland isn’t just about booze (though I do love my booze) for my love of fine architecture and culture trumped my desire to have pint after pint – I can buy Irish booze back home. As a new mate of mine just said, “You can have great Guinness in any part of Ireland.”
That being said, I did go to the Guinness Storehouse because I am a huge fan of Guinness and would happily drown in the stuff.
Now then, I hear you ask, if you had the entire day in Dublin and you didn’t go get smashhammered, what did you do?
Why, churches of course!
I absolutely love looking at these architectural marvels of ages long past. My family once visited the cathedral in Fribourg, Swissland, and our guide explained that most of the timbers used required 80+ years to mature. Imagine, then, being a medieval master builder and knowing that the work you are crafting won’t be finished until long after you’ve passed, yet the building itself has immortalized you forever.
It’s simply beautiful when you stop and realize that fact.
Today skyscrapers go up in several years and are torn down to be replaced in just as many decades. But these churches, these monuments to ages long past, have been standing tall for centuries, a living embodiment to the stubbornness of belief, and the beauty of Nature coupled with the tenacity of mankind. You don’t need be Catholic or
heretic Protestant or anything, really, to simply enjoy these beautiful buildings of old.
Now then, enough jibber jabber, here’s some bitchin’ old churches right in Dublin proper, lad.
Church of the Blessed Virgin and Saint John the Baptist. Why have one church per saint when you can just double up, eh? This one is near my hostel and I see it every time I walk outside the door. The busy street in front isn’t so bueno, but the decor and layout are absolutely stunning.
The Cathedral of Saint Patrick, that lovable Englishman who killed snakes and pagans alike! I did not go into this church because they charged an entry fee and I am fundamentally opposed to paying for entry into a house of God. However, the layout is delightfully Gothic and the grounds are very enjoyable. I could get used to this green grass stuff.
Of course the first church I stopped at was the Church of Saint James (yeah, that Saint James). The building was erected in the 1800s so it is scarcely old by European standards. According to the placard on the outside, the chap who designed this building fathered two of the leaders of the Easter Uprising. Bravo!
This wall dates back to the Anglo-Norman conquest of the late 1100s and is one of the last remnants of said wall. This wall is older than the United States x3, to put it into perspective. When we have long crumbled into the dust of history, comrades, what will our ancestors look upon and marvel?
Hey there folks,
Training with the American Pilgrims is still going well. There are so many wonderful people here to meet and speak with – truly a pilgrim’s paradise. Here’s just a few of the photos I’ve taken of the event (I’m no photographer).
As part of the hospitalero training, we had to make a communal dinner for approximately 25 people. That bitchin’ cheese arrangement? Yeah, I did that.
The nature and grounds are of the shrine itself. It is a very beautiful place. You don’t even realize St. Louis is right around the corner. It’s serene and peaceful here.