Monthly Archives: December 2014

I Still Live

Progress on Retardo Montalbán is going well. I should have a editable draft finished very soon.

I don’t like being silent here for too long but I also despise meaningless posts, so here’s some things to mitigate that.

  1. You are currently viewing WordPress’ 2015 default theme with very little modifications on my part. I have no problems with it except that there’s no CSS for the Goodreads logo on the social media icon strip on the left (if you’re on a desktop).
  2. We now have only very basic cable, which is fine by me, but we lose some of the channels that broadcast the ol’ Christmas movie standbys. We haven’t seen Christmas Vacation or A Christmas Story, which seems like barely a minor tragedy in the grand scheme of things but if you see them at every beat in the circadian rhythm you feel their absence.
  3. We did see It’s A Wonderful Life. Random film crit bit: the compare/contrast between George Bailey and Mary Hatch (*swoon*) and their fall into the gymnasium pool, and George’s faux-suicide at the bridge, and the subsequent “dry off” scenes. I don’t have much to say but it’s something worth looking into.
  4. Pools underneath gymnasium floors? I had always thought that scene was cockamamie because I can only imagine a pool’s worth of water underneath a retractable floor would wreak some hydro-havok on the wood, but it’s a real thing.
  5. Predictable Christmas fare: Newsweek’s Tirade against the Bible – Excellent article, but “scholarship” doesn’t matter because the traditions of B.C. Israel and the early church are very well-known. No tilting of the head to misread half of a verse that isn’t going to change anything.
  6. I had very minor and successful surgery over Christmas break. While waiting to check out there was a long discussion—not an argument—between a patient, two of her family members, and one of the nurses. It had much to do with paperwork and insurance. A ridiculous amount of discussion. All I could think about was the solution to the health care crisis I offered some time ago.
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The Christian Case for Santa Claus

Yes, it’s fine, in this modern day, if you want to emphasize the St. Nicholas version of Santa Claus. It’s also a fine thing if you want to play up the Sunblom version of Santa Claus as well. I don’t find rejecting either one as particularly bad, but what I object to is rejection of Santa Claus’ materialism of excess for the sake of the materialism of scientism: that he doesn’t exist because of certain universal physical laws that we know to be true.

Fairy-tales aren’t valued because of their truthfulness but in their value as a vehicle for truth-illustration. Denounce Santa as a symptom of Keynesian easy credit and the Industrial Revolution all you’d like, but don’t denounce him because he’s not real. Of course he isn’t real, yet it does children no good to reject him just because he’s impossible. It just so happens in this universe that Santa Claus is not particular to us—Santa Claus is, truthfully, not impossible because God is not impossible.

Below is a quote from G.K. Chesterton’s “The Other Stocking,” stolen from here.

What has happened to me has been the very reverse of what appears to be the experience of most of my friends. Instead of dwindling to a point, Santa Claus has grown larger and larger in my life until he fills almost the whole of it. It happened in this way.

As a child I was faced with a phenomenon requiring explanation. I hung up at the end of my bed an empty stocking, which in the morning became a full stocking. I had done nothing to produce the things that filled it. I had not worked for them, or made them or helped to make them. I had not even been good–far from it.

And the explanation was that a certain being whom people called Santa Claus was benevolently disposed toward me. What we believed was that a certain benevolent agency did give us those toys for nothing. And, as I say, I believe it still.

I have merely extended the idea.

Then I only wondered who put the toys in the stocking; now I wonder who put the stocking by the bed, and the bed in the room, and the room in the house, and the house on the planet, and the great planet in the void.

Once I only thanked Santa Claus for a few dolls and crackers, now, I thank him for stars and street faces and wine and the great sea.

Once I thought it delightful and astonishing to find a present so big that it only went halfway into the stocking. Now I am delighted and astonished every morning to find a present so big that it takes two stockings to hold it, and then leaves a great deal outside; it is the large and preposterous present of myself, as to the origin of which I can offer no suggestion except that Santa Claus gave it to me in a fit of peculiarly fantastic goodwill.

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