It is funny that David asked me if I buy used books in response to my last post on shopping at Amazon. As it turns out, I put my first used book order in to Amazon last night. Having been told about the St. Hereticus satires, of which I just quoted, by a friend of mine, I checked them out on Amazon, only to find book one and two selling for between $.79 and $2.50 for good condition used copies (the books are out of print). So, I ordered them — my first used book purchases over the Internet. I'll post how it turns out.
I have the twisted sense of humor that enjoys things like the Tillich satire I posted yesterday, so this should be a handy “reference” to have. Sometimes after reading the real works, it is nice to get a chuckle at the theologians expense. I never know when I could use a little humor to spice up something I am writing…
There's nothing quite like the joy of getting a new book from Amazon. The package appears in the mailbox and you know there is a whole wealth of new information just waiting to be read. I received a new book I am looking forward to reading today: Karl Barth's Dogmatics in Outline. I don't know when I'll find time, but it seemed like a better place to start on Barth than the volumous Church Dogmatics.
Presently I only have second hand knowledge of Barth, and I hope this book will give me a better understanding of this theologian's views. He seems to have some good ideas, we'll see how it all fits together.
In other book news, I received Sigmund Freud's Future of Illusion in the mail last Thursday. I haven't had time to start it yet, but need to do so rather snappily, since that one is not reading for pleasure but rather assignment. While I know I will disagree with Freud, it will still be nice to finally have read a primary Freudian text instead of (again) depending on second hand knowledge.
I was going to post something good tonight, but I got wrapped up in reading the Da Vinci Code. I've been wanting to read it for some time, and was given a copy of it for Christmas, but just finally found time to start reading it earlier this week.
Now excuse me, I must see what happens with the cryptex they just found…
Ok, so here's the deal. I'm (re)learning Koine Greek. So far, I'm making progress on parts that stumped me previously. I've also spent a good amount of time refreshing myself on stuff I already knew at sometime in the past but no longer could recall in a productive fashion. I wasn't sure if taking 3 out of the 15 hours of my semester schedule and dedicating it to a course that fulfills absolutely no requirements was a good idea, but now that I'm in the midst of it, I think it was a good choice.
The interesting thing is that the instructor taught himself Latin last year so that he could teach that as well. Apparently, he says it is relatively easy to learn Latin once you get use to Greek. Ideally, I will be good to go with Greek by the end of the semester — not a Greek whiz, but with enough knowledge to work my way through it. Where to go from there is the question, but the professor's remarks about Latin have me intrigued.
I'm thinking about trying to see if I could teach myself Latin later this year. If I could do that, presumably, it would make it easier to reach a practical goal: to learn Spanish. In the future it will be a necessity to know Spanish around here (see my previous post on that, here), so I need to quit talking and accomplish something about that soon. This might help and allow me to pick up one of the nicest sounding languages ever to be created along the way.
How many of you have tried Haiku before? Given that I seem to be on a poetry streak at the moment, for some reason, I was thinking, wouldn't it be fun if each of you would contribute one Haiku of whatever strikes you at the moment of composition (Haiku, after all, being about the moment). As a grouping, it could be quite fascinating.
Want to give it a try? It's simple, really. First, it doesn't have to rhyme. Second, it does not have to follow a certain meter. Those two things make Haiku some of the easiest poetry to write, from a technical standpoint. What's hard is fitting a whole moment in its confining size. In particular, a Haiku should be composed of three lines, the first being five syllables long, the second seven, and the third five again. This 5-7-5 pattern can be a bit difficult, but fun to try.
Poesy in Haiku
Can be fun and amusing,
And soon fill comments.
I'm a technical writer and I always have been. That's OK for a lot of tasks (it may even be good), but I've come to see the limitations of my
sometimes dry style. While I doubt I can ever reach the great colloquial tone of someone like C.S. Lewis, I should like to make my writing “friendlier.” It is one thing if you can follow the rules and make something proper (something I'm careless to do here on asisaid at times). It is entirely another if you can make people want to read what you write.
Part of accomplishing this is writing stuff that isn't so technical in nature. Spending time writing on this blog helps. Writing the fiction that I have sitting on my hard disk helps. Writing poetry helps. But I still need to iron things out a bit.
The point of this entry? I don't think there is one. Just an observation I felt like making.
I borrowed this from Christopher (again).
1) Do you use bookmarks?
Almost always. It's usually an envelope or some other piece of material that happens to be available. If I plan to mark out a lot of pages in a book, I might take a piece of scratch paper and tear it into strips instead.
2) What is your favorite book?
That is a very tough question, I must, like Christopher, categorize. Sheesh! I think I am going to interpret the term “book” somewhat loosely. Perhaps Aeschylus' Orestia or Dante Alighieri's Divine Comedy for drama. For the lighter side of things, Voltaire's Candide. For non-fiction, perhaps C.S. Lewis' Mere Christianity or Henry Hazlitt's Economics in One Lesson.
3) Who is your favorite author?
I'm not sure if I have just one. Let's make it easier by saying it must be someone who live in the last one hundred years. Alright then, I'll say C.S. Lewis.
4) What is the movie you feel is the most authentic version of a book?
Most of the books I've read haven't been made into screen plays or I have failed to watch the movies if they had, so I don't know.
5) Is there a book you wish they would make into a movie and why?
The Orestia or an approximation of it, would make an amazing movie. Candide would be good too.
Have some late brunch in the comments.