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Scheduling Things

By Tim Butler | Posted at 0:28

Well, I'll write more about the exact details soon, but it ended up not being until today that I got my schedule finalized at Covenant. I am now set to start my first class at 8:00 a.m. on Friday morning. I'll have Tuesdays and Thursdays off to do work and studying, with the other three days fairly full.

It is not an ideal schedule, but the every-other-day arrangement saves some commute time, and I think will be a good thing by and large.

Laying Low

By Tim Butler | Posted at 16:45

I'll be back tomorrow night, hopefully. I have a Greek placement exam tomorrow that will occupy me until then. I've been trying to shore up my weaknesses for months, but now comes the last minute analysis of what I still need to do. I don't have very high hopes, I'll admit, because the exam is suppose to be harder to pass than the final for Greek II, so while I've done Greek II, this exam appears to include a decent amount of material on things that aren't focused on so much in Greek II.

Gulp. I think I might have to take Greek again — third time's the charm (I first took Greek as a homeschooler, then took it again in a normal format at Lindenwood, and depending on how this goes, I may do it again)?

Diploma Fun

By Tim Butler | Posted at 23:45

I was able to pick up my diploma yesterday. Not completely unsurprisingly, it had a nice big mistake on it. I had been told the university makes a lot of mistakes as far as printing honors on diplomas, so I checked that portion, only to have my eyes move up a bit and see the wrong major listed. Yikes!

Fortunately, they have a fancy-schmancy raised print printer on site, and they printed up a new diploma within a few minutes. Everything looks correct now.

None of the Pomp, All of the Circumstance

By Tim Butler | Posted at 1:04

Well, I “walked” at the Lindenwood's commencement back in May (see All of the Pomp, Most of the Circumstance), and could have graduated, but I needed four more classes to complete my second major (English) and minor (Philosophy). With those classes done and my last final turned in tonight, I walked off the campus with my BA complete.

It is amazing I am done. After four and a half years, and 141 credit hours, it is complete. And quietly so: I handed in my essay at 8:03 p.m. after two and a half hours of exam time along with a friend of mine who also was finishing up this semester. My professor, Dr. Canale, upon realizing her class had served to “graduate” us, shook our hands and congratulated us.

I get to pick up my diploma from Academic Services after January 1.

Some Hope Abandonded

By Tim Butler | Posted at 23:52

Well, it didn't go nearly as well as I hoped. I know I messed up on at least a few IPA symbols when writing out how sentences should be pronounced (and other bits of that may be wrong — it is very hard to sound out words properly when you can't make any sounds), and a few other things are questionable. I'm just hoping things are better than they seemed.

I'm not sure if they did, but by gaging the mood of everyone after the class, I think if the professor is merciful enough to grade on a curve it should not be too bad. I hope. It was probably one of the worst “feeling” tests I've taken, though.

I guess I'm only in the 8th circle or so, so I won't get to see any stars tonight… good news when I get it back would solve that, though. ;)

Abandon All Hope

By Tim Butler | Posted at 23:11

If I seem a little scarce, that's because of an exam I have tomorrow night for History of the English Language (those wondering about the Dante reference in the title should assemble the initials of the class's name, which gives the name students affectionally refer to the class by). At any rate, the tests in this class are absolutely legendary in their infamy. Every English major hears horror stories about how difficult these tests are.

There are many reasons for this, none of which I'll bore all of you with tonight, but I'll say this for now: I hope I am as fortunate as Dante and can look out to the stars tomorrow night. :)

The Beginning of the End

By Tim Butler | Posted at 22:21

Of my time at Lindenwood, that is. Today was the first day of the last semester of my time at Lindenwood University. Having fulfilled all of the general requirements for graduation, as well as my religion major, last semester, this semester's primary purpose is to complete two courses for my English major, American Lit II and History of the English Language. Since I knew I was going to have at least one course spill over into this semester, last fall I picked up a philosophy minor, which meshes well enough into the religion major that I only needed to take three extra courses beyond the electives I had previously chosen in religion. One of those I took last fall, the remaining two I'm taking this fall — Aristotelean Logic and Medieval Philosophy.

Aristotelean Logic is an independent study my philosophy professor came up with as a substitute for normal logic. He thought I might especially enjoy this. In addition, because that left me with a light load, I'm doing another independent study with him just for fun: “Calvin and Aquinas.”

More on the courses themselves in the near future.

All the Pomp, Most of the Circumstance

By Tim Butler | Posted at 22:47

I've been behind on blogging about what I've been up to, so let's go back to May for a second. Because of some complications, I'll be finishing up my BA in December rather than in time for the traditional May graduation. The problem is, at least at LU, there is no ceremony in December. To remedy that, the powers that be allow December graduates to “walk” in May, which I did on May 20.

It was a nice enough experience, complete with all kinds of cord-y and tassle-y goodness. Unwittingly, I ended up being especially “colorful” at the Baccalaureate ceremony the night prior to the commencement. Due to low attendance to the Baccalaureate, the administration merged that ceremony with the graduate student commencement. Apparently, virtually all of the undergrads thought it was only a graduate ceremony, so only two undergraduates — myself being one — showed up. Unlike the undergraduate programs, the graduate programs do not offer much in the way of cords for honors, so here I was with my cords and double tassel (representing two majors) in the midst of a bunch of people in just black with one tassel. Everyone kept asking me exactly what I had done to get all the colorful garb. One group actually picked a leader to come over and query me about it. “I'm an undergrad.” That pretty much took care of the curiosity. I blended in a bit better the next morning in the undergrad commencement.

The truly priceless moment, however, was when my one professor saw me. The program called for all of the graduate students to march in with the faculty applauding them, followed immediately behind by undergraduates. As one of just two undergrads at the Baccalaureate, my one professor did not realize why I was there when he saw me (several others knew I was going to be there and so they weren't surprised). His eyes grew very large and he said “You're getting a masters degree!?!?” Given that he was just a week away from receiving his Ph.D., I'm sure he was concerned if I was already finishing my masters while taking undergrad classes I might try to beat him on my dissertation too. ;)

Ah, what fun. Probably the best part was seeing my professors in their academic regalia. My mother nabbed a number of pictures that have various professors in them, which will make for a nice keepsake in the years to come.

At first, I was going to title this “All the Pomp, None of the Circumstance,” but that isn't quite true. I've completed one hour more than required to graduate (129 of 128), but if I called it quits now I'd have only my religion major. Next semester I will complete my English major and Philosophy minor. I think those additions are well worth the extra six months.

IN OTHER NEWS, I completed my application to Covenant Theological Seminary this week. Hopefully they'll accept me, although I am working on some alternative applications in case things don't work out in that direction. Once the application becomes available for a January start date, I'll be applying to Princeton Theological Seminary and I am also considering applying to St. Louis University's Philosophy of Religion program. Both PTS and SLU have five year Ph.D.-track programs that seem appealing. We'll see how that goes; a lot of the decision will be driven by what kind of financial arrangements the schools offer.

A Project Doth Approacheth

By Tim Butler | Posted at 21:47

This Tuesday Ey am supposed to gyve a presentaytion on Karl Barth's doctryne of Elecksion. Right now Ey am almoste donne preparing it and Ey'm eksited to see how it will goon. Ye see, Ey'm using Aepple's Keynote presentaytion sophwear insteade of PowerPointe. Ey'm verie impressed with the programme's cinamaetical effeckts. I think it lookes far better thanne my typical PowerPointe documente.

It'll bee interesting to see if it works out as welle when I actually neede it to. :)

Combining Work and Pleasure

By Tim Butler | Posted at 0:04

If you've noticed I've been quoting a lot of Barth lately, you might guess that I've become quite fond of him. You'd be right. But, it is also because I've had the excuse opportunity to dig into Barthian history and theology lately. One of my projects this semester is to create a master thesis quality annotated bibliography and guess who I'm doing it on? Yup, Barth.

I figured if I don't have time to look into subjects I want to normally, I'll take any opportunity I can to make them part of my course work.

This project is just getting started, so I hope all of you can tolerate a lot more Barth in the mean time. As part of the research, I'm hoping to throw in some of Barth's contemporaries and fellow travelers, which logically sends me to look at Missourians Reinhold and H. Richard Niebuhr as well as Barth's fellow Swiss colleague Emil Brunner.

I hope I don't drive y'all crazy. :)

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