Monday, July 24, 2017

Astronomy, Part II



Friday we went to Stellafane, one of the largest gathering of amateur telescope makers and amateur astronomers. We went first to Hartness House where they directed us up Breezy Hill to the Stellafane clubhouse. We talked to the president of Stellafane along with the curator of the museum at Hartness House. There were lots of amateur astronomers there with their hand built telescopes. I will admit that I did not understand any of the technical stuff they told us, but we were mainly there to find out more about Russell Porter, arctic explorer turned telescope maker. Porter was quite an interesting man. It wasn't the most exciting day, but we had a good time.

Sunday, July 23, 2017

Love Lifted Me



  1. I was sinking deep in sin, far from the peaceful shore,
    Very deeply stained within, sinking to rise no more,
    But the Master of the sea heard my despairing cry,
    From the waters lifted me, now safe am I.
    • Refrain:
      Love lifted me!
      Love lifted me!
      When nothing else could help,
      Love lifted me!
  2. All my heart to Him I give, ever to Him I’ll cling,
    In His blessed presence live, ever His praises sing,
    Love so mighty and so true, merits my soul’s best songs,
    Faithful, loving service, too, to Him belongs.
  3. Souls in danger, look above, Jesus completely saves,
    He will lift you by His love, out of the angry waves;
    He’s the Master of the sea, billows His will obey,
    He your Savior wants to be, be saved today.

Friday, July 21, 2017

Astronomy



Stellafane. Your first question is probably: what the hell is Stellafane? Stellafane (Latin for shrine to the stars) is the name of the clubhouse built by the Springfield Telescope Makers club of Springfield, Vermont in the early 1920s, and has since come to refer to the club's land and buildings on the summit of Breezy Hill. It also refers to the Stellafane Convention, a gathering of amateur telescope makers and amateur astronomers (star party) held every year at that location. The Springfield Telescope Makers grew out of a class on how to make telescopes that was started by Russell W. Porter in Springfield, Vermont in August 12, 1920. The members of this small group decided to form a club and held their first meeting on December 7, 1923.

The reason I mention Stellafane is because I am going to the convention today. Porter was an alumni of the university that I work for. They are the curators of some Porter material that my Museum would like to borrow. Porter built some great telescopes such as the Hale Telescope at the Palomar Observatory in California. Porter was a pretty fascinating guy as an artist, an Artic explorer, and a telescope builder. So I'm going to Stellafane to help borrow some of the artifacts they have about Porter. It should be an interesting day. 

Thursday, July 20, 2017

Morning Coffee



If only he'd bring me coffee in the morning...I might actually want to get up, then again I might want to stay in bed.

Wednesday, July 19, 2017

Will



Has anyone watched Will? Will is an American drama television series about the (fictional) life of William Shakespeare in his early 20s. The series was ordered for a first season containing 10 episodes, on May 18, 2016, and premiered on TNT on July 10, 2017.

While the show is fictional, there are certain things true about it. There is a real debate over whether Shakespeare was a closet Catholic or not. Also, it shows Christopher Marlowe as being gay, which history says he probably was. Marlowe is played marvelously by Jamie Campbell Bower.



I am also quite fond of Mattias Inwood's character, Richard Burbage. He has a magnificent butt that is shown off quite well in episode two. Also, Colm Meaney is in the show and as a Star Trek fan, I love him.

Tuesday, July 18, 2017

A Better Life



A Better Life

 

Randall Mann


after Julio Cortázar

 

It’s silly to think

fourteen years ago

I turned thirty.

 

How I made it that far

I’ll never know.

In this city of hills,

 

if there was a hill

I was over it. Then.

(In queer years,

 

years

are more than.)

Soon it will be fifteen

 

since the day I turned thirty.

It’s so remote.

I didn’t think I’d make it

 

to fourteen years ago.

Fear lives in the chest

like results.

 

You say my gray, it makes

me look extinguished;

you make me cringe.

 

I haven’t cracked

the spines of certain paperbacks,

or learned a sense of direction,

 

even with a slick device.

But the spleen doesn’t ask twice,

and soon it will be fifteen years

 

since I turned thirty.

Which may not sound like a lot.

Which sounds like the hinge

 

of a better life:

It is, and it is not.


Monday, July 17, 2017

Monday



It's Monday and quite honestly, I have nothing to say. I'm writing this just before the season 7 premiere of Game of Thrones. I love this show. But other than that, I have nothing.

Sunday, July 16, 2017

A Gay Christian Life



Lewis is a 19 year old gay man who just came out to his family. He's also a Christian in a very Christian family. Lewis started a new blog called "A Gay Christian Life." He hasn't been too encouraged to write a lot because he hasn't gotten many hits, but let me assure you that his story is worth reading. He has two posts up so far, one about coming out and the other about a meeting with his pastor. It's a story that is familiar to a lot of our coming outs, both the ups and downs of it. So please go check out Lewis's blog "A Gay Christian Life."

Friday, July 14, 2017

Research, Day 2



I read so many old letters yesterday that by the end of the day, my eyes were crossed. People had such bad handwriting. Some had beautiful handwriting but most did not. Today, is going to be no different. I will still be reading letters, hopefully though the later they are in time, the more often they are typed. Hopefully more will be typed than not. We also haven't found what we are looking for, but maybe something will turn up.

Thursday, July 13, 2017

Research



Today will be a day of research. Thankfully, I won't have to drive far. Traffic was horrible yesterday. At one point I had two cars merging into my lane where I was occupying said lane. Luckily, I squeezed on through and managed to avoid a wreck. With so much traffic plus the rain, and accident would have been a major disaster. All I have to do today is drive into Providence (11 minutes from the hotel). Hopefully traffic will be better.

Wednesday, July 12, 2017

Rhode Island



Unless something changes in the morning, I will be spending the next few days in Rhode Island. It seems that my boss needs an extra pair of eyes to help with research at the historical society in Providence. So, I will be spending the next two days plowing through old letters and documents, and essentially looking for a needle in a haystack.

Tuesday, July 11, 2017

Bed in Summer



Bed In Summer

In winter I get up at night
And dress by yellow candle-light.
In summer quite the other way,
I have to go to bed by day.

I have to go to bed and see
The birds still hopping on the tree,
Or hear the grown-up people’s feet
Still going past me in the street.

And does it not seem hard to you,
When all the sky is clear and blue,
And I should like so much to play,
To have to go to bed by day?

-Robert Louis Stevenson    






Thank you, Susan, for another great suggestion.

Monday, July 10, 2017

The Invention of "Heterosexuality"



The 1901 Dorland’s Medical Dictionary defined heterosexuality as an “abnormal or perverted appetite toward the opposite sex.” More than two decades later, in 1923, Merriam Webster’s dictionary similarly defined it as “morbid sexual passion for one of the opposite sex.” It wasn’t until 1934 that heterosexuality was graced with the meaning we’re familiar with today: “manifestation of sexual passion for one of the opposite sex; normal sexuality.”


If the above paragraph interests you, which it did me (thanks Susan for sending me this), then it's well worth your while to read the whole article by Brandon Ambrosino:


You can find the article here: http://www.bbc.com/future/story/20170315-the-invention-of-heterosexuality

Sunday, July 9, 2017

Just a Closer Walk




Just a Closer Walk with Thee

I am weak but Thou art strong;
Jesus, keep me from all wrong;
I'll be satisfied as long
As I walk, let me walk close to Thee.

Just a closer walk with Thee,
Grant it, Jesus, is my plea,
Daily walking close to Thee,
Let it be, dear Lord, let it be.

Thro' this world of toil and snares,
If I falter, Lord, who cares?
Who with me my burden shares?
None but Thee, dear Lord, none but Thee.

Just a closer walk with Thee,
Grant it, Jesus, is my plea,
Daily walking close to Thee,
Let it be, dear Lord, let it be.

When my feeble life is o'er,
Time for me will be no more;
Guide me gently, safely o'er
To Thy kingdom shore, to Thy shore.

Just a closer walk with Thee,
Grant it, Jesus, is my plea,
Daily walking close to Thee,
Let it be, dear Lord, let it be.


In this song, we acknowledge our human inability to live righteously, but we also express awareness of the grace and strength that God gives us in our daily walk. Even such an esteemed saint as the apostle Paul acknowledged his need for this grace: “But he [God] said to me, “My grace is sufficient for you, for my power is made perfect in weakness.” … For when I am weak, then I am strong.” (2 Corinthians 12:9a, 10b ESV)

This song is one of my all time favorite hymns.  Though I was raised in the church of Christ, my mother was raised a Baptist.  She and her sister played the piano and the organ at their church growing up.  Mama always loved to sit and play hymns at the piano in our living room.  More frequently than any other song, mama would play "Just a Closer Walk with Thee."

Saturday, July 8, 2017

Moment of Zen: River Boys



During my vacation home, I got to spend nearly the whole week on the river. While sights like this aren't exactly common, there is still a lot of eye candy to be had.

Friday, July 7, 2017

Back to Work



Now that I'm back in Vermont, I have to return to work today. At least it is Friday. I only have to work one day this week. It should be a day of catching up on things I missed while I was out the last week. It shouldn't be a lot of stuff. I'll get my coffee in the morning and then get to working on whatever needs to be done.

Thursday, July 6, 2017

Back in Vermont



I finally made it back to my apartment around 12:30 am. Isabella sure was happy to see me.

Wednesday, July 5, 2017

Back to Vermont



I fly back to Vermont today. It's been good to be home, and to be honest, I'm not looking forward to returning to Vermont. However, I am looking forward to seeing Isabella. I've had a coworker taking care of her, but I'm ready to have her back. Otherwise, it will be back to the same old routine at work. 

Tuesday, July 4, 2017

Happy Fourth!



Yesterday, Daddy and I were out riding on the boat when we came across a kid, he was probably 18, whose jet ski had broken down. Daddy offered to pull him back to his friends. There's a sandbar where they all congregate. The kid was tall, very tan, with dark hair and very handsome. He had a nice butt too. Anyway, his friends showed up to help pull him back so we didn't take him very far. His friends were cute too.


Happy Fourth of July!

Monday, July 3, 2017

A Busy Day



We went out on my parents' new boat yesterday. It was a lot of fun, but there were a lot of trees and limbs floating down the river because of all the rain they've had. Today will be a busy day because we will be getting ready for the big BBQ tomorrow. Mama and I will make cakes and pies for dessert and do some other prep work for tomorrow. Tonight, I'm going out to eat with some friends of mine. We should have lots of fun catching up.

Sunday, July 2, 2017

Homecoming



Mark 5:19 - Howbeit Jesus suffered him not, but saith unto him, Go home to thy friends, and tell them how great things the Lord hath done for thee, and hath had compassion on thee.

One of the reasons that I decided to come home this week was because the ladies at my home church have been begging for me to come home. I've also been homesick. I may live in Vermont, but home will always be where my family is. I have been blessed by the job that I have and the friends that I've made, especially those who are most supportive. It's not easy being away from home, but it's what I must do for now. We must be thankful for what God does for us.