Subster, Biss, Foster kids, Marianas Trench

Three things. I think. actually four. (like proverbs)

A few friends from High School are in this band, Marianas Trench, and they are good, so go and buy their single on Itunes. its pretty pop-ish-punk-ish-rock-ish, but the vocal layering and the arranging is amazing. lyrically its clever,but I haven't really digested it, so my bias is that i know them. anyways.

I had a dream the other night that I was talking with Josh, the lead guy in the band, and all of a sudden we look over and there leaning against a wall full of self awareness is the Beatles. all leather clad, just standing there looking cool. So, we go over and talk to them or something, the details are getting fuzzy, but what ends up happening is that they open the show for my buddy's band, which is pretty crazy. because, you know, the beatles...they are pretty well known...get it? nevermind.

the rest of the days news. oh, and not blogging during fasts is amazing. I am reading the brothers karamazov, its PHENOMENAL! thanks matthew for the inspiration, though you are not the only source.

So, My Friend Tim, has this photo blog, and one of his co-photobloggers, dubbed Suby, has this thing called the Policy of Subster or something like it. The idea behind it is that he genuinely wants critical feedback on his work so that he can improve on his photo-taking or photographing or picture-ism or being or whatever. he wants to become better, so he knows that while serious criticism of his art may not feel the best, he also knows that it will better him in a way that is worth whatever discomfort said critique may bring. He also knows that it is not a personal attack, so Tim saw this and put the little tag on his blog and wants the same type of critique for his photos. I am impressed, partly perhaps the anonymity of the internet, but partly these people really are helping each other grow in their ability to shoot pictures well. Tim has gotten quite good, check the recent second set of pics of Flora lake that are on my flickr site, he took those. in fact, I will add one of his here, just for the sake of illustration

Nice Boddingtons


I wonder why we aren't all doing this to each other about each other's person? are we not all dying to get closer to God, closer to holiness, closer to death to self, closer to self abnegation to the end of the glory of God and the love of the Other?

I know its easy to talk about, but I always appreciate having people point out what they see in me that needs to at least be examined. I don't mean online, so don't do it here, but in person, in a dialogue in a way that allows for growth and that comes from love as a motivator. Someone recently pointed a lot of things out to me to think about, showed me some of my selfishness and it was very hard, but I know that they did it out of love, and they did it in such a way that allows me to defend myself if I need to, and to just be humbled and quiet too. Their motivation has nothing to do with one upping me, or being better, it is not about themself at all, but they did it out of concern for me. anyways. I am always curious because one of the many wonderful priests around here told me that many people don't really want to know the truth about themselves, it would hurt too much.

Is that true? I hope not.

In other, lighter news, I am getting the Brothers Karamazov in the mail soon, the pevear and volokhonsky translation. woohoo! and I am getting ready for Biss and Phil to leave. I don't know how I will be able to handle this.

I love Phil, he's great, but I haven't known him as well or as long as I have known Biss. In Fact, one of the very few people who has been willing to risk offense for the sake of truth like I talked about above is Biss. She is able to love people enough to be straight up and loving about tellling me when I have hurt her, or when I have done something foolish, often she would tell me these things in the context of girls I was interested in, and she has always been right. I have known her for 7 years now, and she is the one who invited me to St. Hermans. I know she doesn;t like that much public attention, so I will cease my public tirade in honour of her, but you all must know that when her and Phil leave, it will be a sad day. I know it will be for many of us, but I need to say these things, they will be missed.

In other, less light news,

Yesterday I worked with a kid who was seven years old, and hasn't seen his Dad in four years. The place I went to was out in the 'wack, it was an apartment complex of sorts, but most of the people there were the same. It was full of orphans. There were at least ten boys running around, screaming for love and attention, their Dad's had all left, which as it turns out is a blessing. One kid had been cut in his sleep by his dad, another's father had stolen his bike. one woman had four kids by three men, only one of whom was anywhere nearby to take care of his son. these kids were running around the yeard, fighting with each other, coming to me to play with me. I seriously felt the way I did at the orphanage in ukraine. One boy clearly had a bit of a learning disability, he asked me the same question about four times in a row, and it was so sad and cute, he sounded just like ralph on the simpsons, and equally clueless, and he spoke about himself in the third person.

And the boys mom I worked with, she seemed to think the problem was with her son, and not her, or the 'family' that she had created. The kid I worked with was quick. he was very smart, understood communication ideas about form and content (not with that language) Like, how you say something changes the meaning, almost regardless of what you are saying. but, his violent reactions to his violent life are going to hamper his ability to live a normal life. I can't really do much in four hours. poor kid wanted me to date his mom. sorry bro, she's not orthodox.

It was sad.


RW said...

that is a very
big photo..

I too, will miss Phil and Biss.

I will also miss Claudia and Nick and Nolan.

the times they are a changing...

I think one of the best things about st. hermans is that we are a family. We can grow with each other. I think Matuska Donna mentioned the church is like a rock polisher.. smooths us all so that all our jagged edges are less offensive.

I am very grateful for each and every person in our parish.

Paul said...

I don't think the answer to getting holy is having everybody tell a person what is wrong with him at every step. I know I'm exaggerating slightly, but it seems like that's what you wrote.

We can learn about ourselves in different ways than standing in front of a panel of judges and hearing them critique us one by one: for example, reading books about exemplary people and imitating them, watching reactions in other people to our presence or the things we say (in other words, having others "tell" us but not with words)--these are ways we can do some of the work ourselves. Also, I think we should be careful about who we take advice from, and not wish to receive it from everybody (and also not all the time). That's just too intense and in the end may lead full circle back to self-centredness.

Chill. Breathe. Be. Look around. Marinate.

elizabeth said...

hi dave; i did not read everthing in detail of ur post (sorry; but i was travling from 7 am-5.15 pm today from london to ottawa and my brain is FRIED) but i agree w. Graham in what he said about learning who to take advice form; this is something i have been learning this summer as i have struggled over trying to move to ottawa...

i have realized that there is actually few people who can help advise me w. big life decisions and that i need God's help to discern who to listen to, etc.

anyway. nice to have u blogging again. hope you are having a good day! :)

oh and thanks for the tribute to biss; i appreciate how you honour your friends. :)

myn said...

hi dave...happy 1 year!!!

Magdalen said...

Graham, I appreciate and agree with what you're saying, that there are many ways to learn from one another that don't always include conflict or criticism. However, I do feel that healthy and loving conflict get rather under-used and looked down on in our uber-polite Canadian culture. We've become so focused on being 'nice' that we're incapable of confronting people in a healthy and loving manner. A dear friend recently conveyed to me some uncomfortable truths about myself, and while that conversation wasn't a particularly fun one, it was very edifying.
Dave, nice to see you posting again. Happy baptismal-birthday!