Sunday, May 21, 2006

Friday, May 19, 2006

Exams done.

Brain is fried.

Will post more later when my neurons are capable of firing again.

history of Protestantism -

history of Protestantism -

I liked this article...

It's as much a 'categorization of Protestantism' as it is a history of it.

Thursday, May 18, 2006

Codex: Biblical Studies Blogspot � Blog Archive � The Da Vinci Dud?

Codex: Biblical Studies Blogspot � Blog Archive � The Da Vinci Dud?

Check out this interesting webpage! OK, I found it since I was hunting down something for my Greek class. Something to do with a critical apparatus. But check out the 'ancient potty' section!

Wednesday, May 17, 2006

questioning my bona fides...

As you might tell from the links I just added, I spent a bit of time (when I should have been studying, of course) looking around Armenian-related websites. I do this from time to time. Some of them had minor flamewars going on. There was one in particular- this one- that really bothered me. This guy Rupen is trashing the site's author Raffi, who is about to marry a non-Armenian woman. This is what he says:

I mean, I’m here trying to convince a guy who has already taken the first step in losing his Armenian heritage by marrying a non-Armenian…Think of it this way…Your children will only be “half-Armenian”…right?!? And if they end up marrying a “non-Armenian” like their father did, their kids will only be considered “quarter-Armenians”, and so on…Wow, I really love your approach in preserving the Armenian culture…Quite interesting!

People who say this kind of things also bandy the word "odar" (non-Armenian, foreigner) about like an insult. OK, I take that stuff personally, because I *am* half-Armenian.

And then I start questioning my bona fides. Am I a real Armenian? I mean, I went to Armenia last year and I felt I was with my relatives. It felt familiar.

But at the same time I feel like I'm always playing catch-up with my Armenianness. I hardly speak any Armenian. OK, if I'm at the dinner table playing host I know how to ask if you want bread or wine or tea, I can say hello, how are you, I'm fine, good morning, good night, Christ is risen, and thank you. And probably something else too if I really wrack my brains. But let's be honest, that's not much. And I only know a fraction of the alphabet- of course I know a lot more now that I spent a whole week in Yerevan, but I still don't know the whole alphabet.

Next year I'm going to study Armenian, but let's be honest, I'll never be a native speaker. I feel like I'll always be a wanna-be. But these are MY people! This is my heritage! I kind of feel half-in, half-out. I don't know what I'd have to do to feel totally "in." I don't know if whatever that would entail would even be worth it.

So it's not easy listening to yahoos like this Rupen guy question my bona fides when I'm questioning them my own self.

And let's not even get INTO the whole "Why aren't you Armenian Apostolic Orthodox, but the other kind?" question. Let's just not.

I barely speak any Armenian because my dad, an Armenian from Iran (a "Parska-hye", they call it) chose not to teach me or my brother. He thought (erroneously) that it would hamstring us, would impair our assimiliation into American culture. Well, baby, are we ever assimilated.

Speaking of questioning my bona fides, I had a while there questioning my Orthodox bona fides cause this guy I knew, who converted about the same time as I did, got rebaptized after he was chrismated, and had me wondering whether MY chrismation was really valid or not, and was I *really* as bona fide Orthodox as all those cradle Orthodox who were baptized as babies?

I got over it.

Maybe I'll get over this "am I really Armenian?" thing too. In the meanwhile I'd like to tell Rupen he can kiss my half-odar posterior. I'm interested in Armenian culture. I *want* to learn Armenian- it's not my fault I didn't grow up knowing it. If you're really interested in preserving your Armenian heritage you should be more concerned with passing on culture than bloodline, IMHO. Hybrid vigor!

Clean Humor and Humorous Stories by Robert Byron

Clean Humor and Humorous Stories by Robert Byron

Funny anecdotes of life in Borlan, really! it's funny!

Take home final done!

It's crap, but it's done.
Thank God.
With an hour to spare.
Now I have to turn it in, and then vacuum.

good article here...

This is an article related to what I have to write about for my Liturgical Theology paper, which gets more onerous by the hour...I should just write it already...

This is the article I'm tallking about: Words of Life

bumper stickers

from O Taste and See, who got it from The Onion Dome.

Um, some of these are kind of inside jokes.
Well, they amuse me:

-My Church wrote your Bible.
-Horn Broken, Listen for Anathema
-Orthodoxy — Ancestors you can’t remember are part of our Church
-Wisdom! Let us attend… to the road!*
-Have you kissed your Mother’s Icon today?**
-Your Mother Church — keeping the “Ma” in “dogma.”
-Orthodoxy: If It Aint’ Broke.…
-Honk if you know what this means: IC XC NIKA***
-Being Saved
-Universality, Antiquity, Consent
-51% Atkins-Friendly****
-Not so Close! I may need to do prostrations.*****
-The Orthodox Church: Not Only Standing for the Truth, But Never Sitting Down Either******
-I (heart) Theotokos
-Fish Sticks have NO BACKBONE!*******
-Orthodoxy: Kickin’ it old school since 33 A.D.
-I’d rather be censing.********
-Eat my antidoron.*********

*right before the Epistle or Gospel is read, the deacon (or priest, if there's no deacon) intones, "Wisdom! Let us attend!"
**referring to the Mother of God. We kiss icons to show respect/affection/love to the person(s) represented, not too unlike kissing a photograph of a loved one.
***IC= Jesus XC=Christ NIKA=Victor
****because we're fasting from meat the other 48% of the time!
*****a full bow with your head to the floor. Muslims got this from us.
******we really don't sit down much in church. Cause we're tough that way. ;)
*******referring to the rule that you can eat fish with no backbone during Lent. like shellfish.
********what swinging incense is called. we do this too. (For one thing, think about it...back in the bathing all winter do the math!)
*********blessed bread given out at the end of the service. Not the same as the Eucharist. Anyone can receive this. It means "instead of the gift."

Procrastinating as usual...

I have a takehome final, due tomorrow at 5 pm. Of course, we have church tomorrow morning at 9*, and I'd really rather not miss it. So it behooves me to finish it tonight. Yay! Another game of chicken with myself. Who will win the staredown?

*because it's Mid-Pentecost. even though it's finals week**

**also somebody important died, so there will be a funeral bit added to it (we had the funeral service this evening). I'm told this is not uncommon.***

***the funeral was nice. We've been practicing the music for it in music class anyway, so it was also like a class review. Also, I killed my voice again (I killed it at Pascha (Easter), but now it's really gone.)

Tonight I think I dug myself into a hole with my New Testament teacher. I was yapping about this morning's test. At some point I thought to myself, "Wait! This is going to bias his opinion!" and made myself shut up. It's not getting an A, but nobody gets an A unless their test or paper is PERFECT. My test is not perfect. It is, however, better than the midterm, which got a B-. So I'm guessing it's getting better than a B-. Thank God I don't have to worry about that class anymore.

Just the class whose exam is coming right up. It's one of those self-evident questions, so self-evident in fact that I can think of nothing so say. At least, being takehome, it's also open book.
This morning's test was also open book, and I swear that's what salvaged my grade. If it's salvaged. Whatever. It's done! Don't think about it!

Last semester's exam week was MUCH worse. But then I had two papers hanging over my head as well as all these exams. That changes the tenor of things...

Tuesday, May 16, 2006

Resurrection Song

We sing this after every meal in the refrectory (dining hall):

Shine, shine
O new Jerusalem
The glory of the Lord
has shone on you
Exalt now, exalt
and be glad O Zion
Be radiant
O pure Theotokos*
in the resurrection,
the resurrection of your Son.

*what we call the Mother of God. It's Greek- it literally means "God-bearer."

This song is so pretty. If I can figure out how to post an mp3 I'll try and get it posted.

Life with Blogchik

I've been wracking my brains for days to think of a good blog name. Literary and Biblical allusions were just not cutting it. I toyed with the notion of calling it "Witty Fool" (with a Shakespearean quote to go with it), but I don't want to be saddled with "fool" in the title. I toyed with the idea of calling it "The Fifth Plagal Tone" but that would only attract fellow Orthodox people and I'm playing for all audiences.

So then in a moment of inspiration I thought of a brilliant song title by the band Cake. Of course! Alpha Beta Parking Lot! It's perfect! This blog could be anything.