Thursday, May 31, 2018

Yummy!



Yesterday’s two interviews went exceptionally well. As I said yesterday, I expected the second guy to be good looking. He was gorgeous and had the bluest eyes.

The highlight of my day though was dinner. I started out with a nice Prosecco Bollicini and an insalate Tricolore (Baby arugula, Radicchio, and Endive with olive oil and balsamic). Then with my meal of risotto frutti di mare, I had Vermentino Banfi La Pettegoia, a wonderful Tuscan white wine. For dessert I had the Tiramisu with an aperitif of lemoncello. I haven’t had a meal this good since I was in Italy itself.

Wednesday, May 30, 2018

A Room with a View


As I said yesterday, I’m in Boston for work until Thursday. I’m staying in Cambridge, and I have a beautiful view from my 7th floor room. My room overlooks the Charles River, and it also as a view of downtown Boston. The Charles River is my favorite view because of the boats going down the river and the hot men running or bicycling by the river. The last time I was in Boston for any length of time for 10-12 years ago when I was in graduate school and came to Boston for dissertation research. Back then I also stayed in Cambridge near the Charles River, though I was closer to Harvard then. Also, it was February and the river was frozen over. I remember just how cold it was that year.

Today, I have an interview scheduled with a prominent business man in Boston who is an alumni of the university where I work. I then have another interview this evening with a young teacher who is also an alumni. I was able to look the younger guy up in the yearbooks and back when he graduated a few years ago, he was quite good looking. I hope both of these interviews go well.  Then on Thursday, I will head home, though I may do a little sightseeing before I go.

Tuesday, May 29, 2018

Boston


Boston 
Aaron Smith

 I’ve been meaning to tell

you how the sky is pink

here sometimes like the roof

of a mouth that’s about to chomp

down on the crooked steel teeth

of the city,


I remember the desperate 

things we did

                and that I stumble

down sidewalks listening

to the buzz of street lamps

at dusk and the crush

of leaves on the pavement,


Without you here I’m viciously lonely


and I can’t remember 

the last time I felt holy,

the last time I offered

myself as sanctuary


*


I watched two men 

press hard into

each other, their bodies

caught in the club’s

bass drum swell,

and I couldn’t remember

when I knew I’d never

be beautiful, but it must 

have been quick

and subtle, the way

the holy ghost can pass

in and out of a room.

I want so desperately

to be finished with desire,

the rushing wind, the still

small voice.



I will be in Boston most of this week for work, and I thought this was an appropriate poem to use. The imagery in this poem is quite interesting to me, especially the last stanza about the two men and the poets perception of self beauty, or lack there of.

Monday, May 28, 2018

Memorial Day


Let us never forget the sacrifices of the men and women of the U.S. Armed Forces.

Sunday, May 27, 2018

A Quiet Place


And he said unto them, Come ye yourselves apart into a desert place, and rest a while: for there were many coming and going, and they had no leisure so much as to eat. (KJV) ( Mark 6:31 ) 

This is always a busy time of year with graduations, visiting family, and working hard. We get focused, hustling and bustling about with little time for eating that we exhaust ourselves. It's important to go off to a quiet place to recharge yourself and rest awhile. Such a time is necessary to find rest in Jesus. When you sneak away, bring a verse with you to meditate and mull over. Perhaps it's only 15 minutes, but the peace you will find is like none other. Come and find rest in Him. 


Friday, May 25, 2018

End of the Week


Thank goodness it’s Friday. The end of the week is finally here. It’s been a busy and tiring week. I’ve completed this week’s coursework for my two classes. I just have to do some commenting on other people’s work, and then I will be finished. I really only have one more week in each class and then the final project in my museum studies class. These two classes have taken up much of my week. I’ll have to buckle down and do some real work tomorrow. I’ve got several things I need to get done, because next week, I will be in Boston. Tuesday through Thursday, I will be conducting my final oral histories. Then, that part of the project will be over with. There is still a lot left to do though. Will I get it all done before my time is up? I doubt it, but I will actually do my best. So tomorrow there is some paperwork to be done and then I have to pack my equipment and get it ready to go. I won’t actually be back in the office until next Friday. Monday is a holiday for us, one of the few that we actually get besides Thanksgiving and Christmas. Anyway, after work tomorrow, I have to go to the doctor for my check-up. I’m not thrilled about going. He’s going to tell me things I already know and say that I need to do better. The good thing is that I am going to ask him about the new migraine prevention medication that has come out. I’d like to see if it could prevent my migraines. Tomorrow is going to be busy.

Thursday, May 24, 2018

Pretty Picture


Sometimes, we just need a pretty picture to get us through the day. I have a dental appointment this afternoon, and a doctor’s appointment tomorrow afternoon. I’m not looking forward to either one. So, I just need a pretty picture to get me through the day, and the picture above is just pretty to me. It remind me of a dear friend I lost, but instead of crying now when I think of him, I have fond memories. I hope you all have a wonderful day.

Wednesday, May 23, 2018

Tired


I don’t mind being a perpetual student. I like learning new things, and I am constantly learning new things in my museum studies class. I enjoy the class, the readings, and the museum visits. My teaching class, however, is a different story. While I am learning a few new things, most of the reading and work is tedious. I guess they want to see just how willing we are to work. Thank goodness, it’s only a three week class. I don’t think I could take much more of it. Currently, we are in week two, and it has gotten even more tedious. I have taken classes on teaching before, but none of them taught me how to conduct an online class. In a way, I guess this class is good for me, but I just wish it wasn’t so...tedious.

Tuesday, May 22, 2018

Fire and Sleet and Candlelight


Fire and Sleet and Candlelight

 by Elinor Wylie


For this you’ve striven

    Daring, to fail:

Your sky is riven

    Like a tearing veil.

 

For this, you’ve wasted

    Wings of your youth;

Divined, and tasted

    Bitter springs of truth.

 

From sand unslakèd

    Twisted strong cords,

And wandered naked

    Among trysted swords.

 

There’s a word unspoken,

    A knot untied.

Whatever is broken

    The earth may hide.

 

The road was jagged

    Over sharp stones:

Your body’s too ragged

    To cover your bones.

 

The wind scatters

    Tears upon dust;

Your soul’s in tatters

    Where the spears thrust.

 

Your race is ended—

    See, it is run:

Nothing is mended

    Under the sun.

 

Straight as an arrow

    You fall to a sleep

Not too narrow

    And not too deep.


Monday, May 21, 2018

Ohio


I slept much of yesterday, trying to recover from my whirlwind travels. It was a good trip though. The ladies at my conference were very nice (I was one of about a half dozen men there), and my paper was well received. I was worried it might not be “scholarly” enough, but apparently it was.

Saturday, I got to meet one of my blog followers in Columbus. That was a real treat. He was a very nice guy. We went to lunch and he took me to the Wexner Museum. I was glad not to be alone. First, I never would have found the  place since my GPS took me to the hospital. Second, I’m not a big fan of contemporary art, and was happy to have someone to discuss it with. I can’t thank him enough for showing me around.

By the way, Ohio University in Athens is a beautiful campus. Ohio State University is a huge campus. Both though have some cute boys. It’s refreshing to see them run around without their shirts. You rarely see that in Vermont.

Sunday, May 20, 2018

God is at Work


He hath made every thing beautiful in his time: also he hath set the world in their heart, so that no man can find out the work that God maketh from the beginning to the end. (KJV) ( Ecclesiastes 3:11 ) 

Jesus is the main character in a story still being told. God’s great work began at creation and continues until the end of time as we know it. Moments of our lives can feel so far from the masterpiece we are promised. Be encouraged, even if you don’t understand it, God’s story is still being told. God is making something beautiful out of you! 


Friday, May 18, 2018

Long Days



I’m exhausted. Yesterday’s trip here was filled with delays. My second plane was delayed nearly an hour, and then when I got to the conference they couldn’t print my parking permit. Ugh! It was just one thing after another.

Today, I present my paper. It’s not until the very last session of the day, so I have lots of time to fret. I also have to be back at the registration lobby at 7:30 am to get my parking permit. Long day.

Thursday, May 17, 2018

Crazy Week


This crazy week is starting to come to an end. I fly to Columbus, Ohio, today and drive to Ohio University, which is about an hour and a half away to attend a conference. I’m going to be pushing it a little to get checked in and make it to the dinner. I will miss the wine reception. I’d really wanted to go see the museum where the wine reception was being held. This is a women’s history conference, so I will be one of a few men, if I’m not the only one in attendance. I’m pretty sure that by perusing the program, I am the only man presenting a paper. I hope they go easy on me. At least I’m gay, that should give me some brownie points with all the feminist.

Wednesday, May 16, 2018

The Week Continues


I’m almost finished with this week’s assignments for my teaching class. I’ve finished the readings for my museum class, but I still have the assignments to do. I’m almost completely packed for my trip, I just need to pack my suit, toiletries and medicine. Just a few more things to wrap up then I’ll be off to Ohio on Thursday. It’s been a busy week. I’ve still got a few things at work to finish up before I go. It’s all about finishing things up.

And for something fun, I had a cousin of mine come up to Burlington yesterday; I was able to meet him for breakfast. He’s not a very close cousin, but he’s very cute, and he thinks he’s straight. I believe otherwise. He’s begging me to take him to a gay bar in New Orleans next time I’m back down south. There’s nothing like a “straight” boy going to a gay bar to set him...straight, or should that be set him gay, lol. Anyway, he’s a former student of mine, the only one who knew I was gay. He’s a good kid too. I’ve missed him.

Tuesday, May 15, 2018

[Sonnets are full of love, and this my tome]


[Sonnets are full of love, and this my tome]

 

by Christina Rossetti


Sonnets are full of love, and this my tome

      Has many sonnets: so here now shall be

   One sonnet more, a love sonnet, from me

To her whose heart is my heart’s quiet home,

   To my first Love, my Mother, on whose knee

I learnt love-lore that is not troublesome;

   Whose service is my special dignity,

And she my loadstar while I go and come.

And so because you love me, and because

   I love you, Mother, I have woven a wreath

      Of rhymes wherewith to crown your honoured name:

      In you not fourscore years can dim the flame

Of love, whose blessed glow transcends the laws

   Of time and change and mortal life and death.


Monday, May 14, 2018

Beyond Busy


I can’t believe how busy this week is going to be. First, I have my usual work load and class load with my museum studies class. In addition to that, I am starting a new class for Southern New Hampshire University to begin online teaching for them. SNHU requires all online teachers to go through a training course before they can be officially hired and start teaching. I have no idea what to expect from this course or how much actual work it will be. Thankfully it is only for three weeks. On top of all of this, I am presenting a paper at a conference this week and will be gone Thursday, Friday, and Saturday. I’m basically only attending the reception Thursday night, if I can make it there in time. The conference is in Athens, Ohio, but the closest airport is in Columbus, and hour and a half away. My plane arrives at 2:48 and the reception 4, no doubt I will be late for the reception. Then I’ll go to a few sessions during the day on Friday before my session which will be at the end of the day. Saturday, I will head back to Columbus where I plan to visit the Wexner Center for the Arts. This is The Ohio State University’s "multidisciplinary, international laboratory for the exploration and advancement of contemporary art". My museum studies assignment this week is to visit a modern/contemporary art museum. I should have plenty of time Saturday since my plane doesn’t depart until 5:51 pm. It’s going to be a busy, busy week.

Sunday, May 13, 2018

Plunge Ahead


A wise man feareth, and departeth from evil: but the fool rageth, and is confident. (KJV) ( Proverbs 14:16 ) 

Do you ever get frustrated when your lack of self-control plunges you into danger? Hindsight comes and you kick yourself for being foolish. How do wise people avoid danger? They are aware of their triggers that cause a moment of weakness, such as a being angry. Often they avoid putting themselves in situations that would tempt their recklessness, as a recovering alcoholic avoids bars. Finally, they limit exposure to friends who encourage unwise choices. Which areas in life do you struggle with self-control? 


Friday, May 11, 2018

Yesterday & Today


I had a bad headache yesterday. Hopefully, it will be better today, since I have an interview today. I hate having headaches. I had to go home from work early yesterday. Hopefully, today is a better day and my interview goes well. Wish me luck.

Thursday, May 10, 2018

References



The school I have an interview with on Friday spent the afternoon calling my references. One of the questions they asked was “Would I wear a uniform?” The faculty at this school wears uniforms on a daily basis and has a military rank. I’d be either a captain or major. It all goes with working for a military school. Furthermore, they told each of my references how impressed they were with my application and resume.

Wednesday, May 9, 2018

Interview



After God only knows how many applications I’ve sent out, I finally got called for an interview. It’s a Skype interview Friday with a military college in the Southwest. I just sent the application last week, so I’m hoping that with them moving on it so quickly, it means they are really interested. It would be back to teaching which I’m okay with, and it would also be a permanent job.

Tuesday, May 8, 2018

The Voice of God


The Voice of God

 

 by Crystal Williams


          Poem for Aretha Franklin



when she opens her mouth

our world swells like dawn on the pond

when the sun licks the water & the jay garbles,

the whole quiet thing coming into tune,

the gnats, frogs, the dandelion pollen, the

pebbles & leaves & the whole world of us

sitting at the throat of the jay

dancing in the throat of the jay

all of us on the lip of the jay

singing doowop, doowop, do.

 

 


About This Poem

 

“Many years ago I heard someone describe Aretha Franklin’s voice as the voice of God, which was an amazing thing to say. This meditation is my attempt at understanding why that statement struck me as profoundly true. In the end, Aretha’s voice is an aggregation of the choruses of the natural world—all of their harmony, complexity, and distinctiveness—and it is as close to the divine as I can imagine.”

—Crystal Williams


Monday, May 7, 2018

Normal


This week should largely be back to normal. Last week was quite a whirlwind with the director job candidates on campus for interviews. The search committee will meet today and make their recommendations to the president and provost who will then decide who is ultimately chosen.we have one candidate that seems highly qualified so I am hoping they do the sensible thing and hire him.

This weekend was also a bit of a whirlwind. I went down to Springfield, Massachusetts, to see the Dr. Seuss Museum, which was fantastic and fun, even if it was filled with children. Also, if you’re ever in Springfield, there is a great Italian restaurant called the Red Rose that had the tenderest, most succulent veal piccata I’ve ever eaten. After Springfield, we headed up to Northampton where we stayed the night. We stayed in the beautiful Hotel Northampton, and ate at its Wiggin’s Tavern. I had the salmon over rice pilaf and rainbow carrots. The waitress told us the rainbow carrots were in honor of pride.

Saturday had been Northampton’s Pride celebration so we went to a Pride after party which was supposed to have the drag queen Sherry Vine. Less than two dozen people showed up. The drag show was so bad that everybody left. We didn’t even stick around for Sherry Vine because we were the only two left in the bar. It was a really sad experience. I felt bad for Sherry Vine because no one was there to see her after we left, but I also didn’t want to be the only two people in the audience. I doubt she would have performed for just two people anyway.

Sunday brunch was at Sylvester’s in Northampton. Sylvester’s is a restaurant housed in Sylvester Graham’s House. Sylvester Graham if you didn’t know invented the Graham cracker. I had the Sylvester’s Special which was eggs, bacon, home fries, and toast. It was good but the eggs and home fries needed salt. And then we headed home.

Sunday, May 6, 2018

Be Content


Not that I speak in respect of want: for I have learned, in whatsoever state I am, therewith to be content. (KJV) (Philippians 4:11)

Could you learn to be content without a new car, iPhone, or house?  If we let them, our desires begin to control us with a never ending thirst that can't be quenched.  It is a daily struggle to consistently trust that God will provide for our needs as He has promised.  We can learn to be content when we rely on God's promises daily.  When you find yourself wanting something today, try practicing contentment with what you have. 


Friday, May 4, 2018

Last One


Today’s candidate is more of a mystery to me. I don’t know as much about him as I did the other two. It’s going to be a marathon day for him. The search committee has packed a lot into these interviews, including dinner tonight.

Also, I’m hoping to go away this weekend. I’m supposed to go to Springfield, Massachusetts, to the Dr. Seuss Museum for my museum studies class. I have to visit at least one children’s museum. If all goes well, I’ll also be going to Noho Pride in Northampton, Massachusetts. A friend and I are supposed to go, if she’s feelin well. I hope she is. Noho Pride should be fun. The drag queen Sherry Vine will be headlining the night.

Thursday, May 3, 2018

Tired


I’m tired. I feel like this is what I’ll be doing at work today. I’m the only one in the front office, and it gets awfully boring. I’ll do my best not to fall asleep though. I’ll at least have my coffee to help keep me awake. I have work that needs to be done too, so maybe I’ll be too busy to get too tired. Plus, I’m only working half a day, so I can go home and take a nap in the afternoon.

It’s been a long week with interviewing candidates for the director’s position. It’s been stressful too. I’m ready for this to be over with, but we still have one more interview Friday.

Wednesday, May 2, 2018

Another Candidate



Today is the internal candidate. While I like him personally, I don’t want him as my boss. I just don’t think he’s ready. I favor the first candidate. It’s just a wait and see game at this point. 

Tuesday, May 1, 2018

Still I Rise



Still I Rise

Maya Angelou, 1928 - 2014


 You may write me down in history

With your bitter, twisted lies,

You may trod me in the very dirt

But still, like dust, I’ll rise.


Does my sassiness upset you?

Why are you beset with gloom?

‘Cause I walk like I’ve got oil wells

Pumping in my living room.


Just like moons and like suns,

With the certainty of tides,

Just like hopes springing high,

Still I’ll rise.


Did you want to see me broken?

Bowed head and lowered eyes?

Shoulders falling down like teardrops,

Weakened by my soulful cries?


Does my haughtiness offend you?

Don’t you take it awful hard

‘Cause I laugh like I’ve got gold mines

Diggin’ in my own backyard.


You may shoot me with your words,

You may cut me with your eyes,

You may kill me with your hatefulness,

But still, like air, I’ll rise.


Does my sexiness upset you?

Does it come as a surprise

That I dance like I’ve got diamonds

At the meeting of my thighs?


Out of the huts of history’s shame

I rise

Up from a past that’s rooted in pain

I rise

I’m a black ocean, leaping and wide,

Welling and swelling I bear in the tide.


Leaving behind nights of terror and fear

I rise

Into a daybreak that’s wondrously clear

I rise

Bringing the gifts that my ancestors gave,

I am the dream and the hope of the slave.

I rise

I rise

I rise.



"Still I Rise" is a powerful, empowering poem all about the struggle to overcome prejudice and injustice. It is one of Maya Angelou's most popular poems.


When read by those who understand the meaning of repeated wrongdoing, the poem becomes a kind of anthem, a beacon of hope for the oppressed and downtrodden.


It is a reminder of the abuse of power by those who sit in government, the judiciary, in the military and in the police force. For members of the public, for society, it sends out the clear, repeated message of hope. No matter the circumstances, there must always be hope to cling on to.