Wednesday, February 25, 2009

3D Street Art

This fellow's really talented. Story here

Tuesday, February 24, 2009

Insanely jealous at the beginning of Lent.
Not a good thing, right?

Thank goodness Lent doesn't begin until tomorrow. I've got a couple of gigs - chief of which is, of course, Sunday morning. I want Fr Jim Martin's gig. Other worthy Christian souls have appeared on the Colbert Report (Stephen Colbert is not only a Catholic, he's a good Catholic) and they haven't all made a good impression. Not so here: kudos to Fr Jim.

Isaiah 40:3-9
"Prepare ye the way"
Michael Wise (1648-1687)

Prepare ye the way of the Lord,
make straight in the desert a highway for our God.
Every valley shall be exalted,
and every mountain and hill shall be made low:
and the crooked shall be made straight,
and the rough places shall be made plain.
And the glory of the Lord shall be revealed,
and all flesh shall see it together.
And the voice said, Cry.
What shall I cry?
All flesh is grass,
and the goodliness thereof is as the flower that is in the field:
The grass withereth, the flower fadeth:
but the word of our God shall stand for ever.
O Zion, that bringest good tidings,
get thee up into the mountains;
O Jerusalem, that bringest good tidings,
lift up thy voice with strength;
and say unto Judah, Behold thy God!

Irish Joke for the Day

Declan shows up at a building site looking for a job. The foreman tells him that he will have to undertake a brief intelligence test.

'Fine,' says the Irishman.

'Right, then,' says the foreman. 'First up, can you tell me the difference between a joist and a girder?'

'That's easy,' the Irishman replies. 'Joyce wrote Ulysses and Goethe wrote Faust.'

Thought for the Day
Good Morning Scotland
Radio Scotland
Tuesday, February 24th, 2009

Good morning,

It’s Ash Wednesday tomorrow. When I finish here in the studio this morning I’ll hoof it over to the church and burn last year’s palms from our Palm Sunday service – then mix the ashes with a little oil in the bottom of a small clay pot. At our three Ash Wednesday Services tomorrow, people will come up to the altar rail. With my thumb, I’ll paint a tiny cross with the slurry of ashes on the forehead of each of them and say the following words:
“Remember that you are dust and to dust you shall return”

These aren’t the sorts of words we ordinarily use to build people up. Out of context they might seem a tad impolite. Say these words to the person sitting next to you on the bus and they’ll probably change seats. What might be preferable?

Remember you’re the cat’s pyjamas or the bee’s knees.
Remember that the sky’s the limit.
Remember - you can be anything you want to be.
Remember - things aren’t as bad as they seem.

Everybody talks about “scaling things back”. From the Royal Bank of Scotland dumping a portion of its assets to the Academy Award Ceremony using last year’s props. “Scaling back” would appear to be the flavour of the month.

And it’s been foisted on us by events. We wouldn’t be doing it if we didn’t have to.

And you see – that’s the problem. We’re already asking when it will be over - when life can return to what it was when the sky was the limit.

People who’ve had a brush with death often remark that the experience caused them to refocus their priorities and reinvest in their relationships. It got them thinking again, reading again – even praying again. They ended up not smaller but deeper.

Brusque though they may be, they remain true words:
“Remember that you are dust and to dust you will return”.

A regular reminder that we are mortal and limited does not, in fact, cause people to give up hope and think small. It does not reduce them. It’s more of an opportunity than an insult. 

Sunday, February 22, 2009

Reposted from Lent last year.
Art by Si Smith. Music by Joseph Arthur.