Wednesday, August 28, 2013

The Periodic Table Song

In honor of organic chemistry, I thought I'd post this. While it's not as stress-relieving as the last thing I posted (what is it lately with me and posting videos, anyway?), it's still certainly amusing for those of a scientific bent of mind. I definitely rank among that number.

I was sitting in class today and realized just how much of the 'magic system' of my fictional universe is based off of science. Serious, my runic system, at least as far as it is deployed in a battle, is somewhere between hieroglyphics and atomic structure. The moment my runes start forming a tetrahedon like methane or something, I will know I have officially lost it.

Of course, look what Terry Pratchett did with the Discworld. There, magic is basically the equivalent of nuclear technology, complete with a background magic field - a concept I also use.

So maybe it's not a bad thing, having a scientific bent of mind. At any rate, it'll be amusing if a work of fantasy turns out to be more scientifically accurate than your average sci-fi thriller or comic book. It always amuses me how superheros get their powers, anyway... A spill in a chemistry lab? Oh, no, you have super speed! I mean. really... XD

In Pace Christi,


Tuesday, August 27, 2013

Who Here Remembers The Emperor's New Groove?


If you do remember The Emperor's New Groove, which is basically a parody and not Disney's usual fare at all, here is a blast from the past that is guaranteed to de-stress you at least a little:

I needed this today. Whew. Now I feel better. Time to attack physics homework...

In Pace Christi,


Shakespeare's Best Comedy undoubtedly Romeo and Juliet. I've been saying this for years and no one will listen.

Oh, you don't believe me? Go check out a DVD of a production of it from the library. That's what we did. My sister is covering Shakespeare right now, and so the most logical thing was to find the plays on DVD's and watch them. For SCIENCE, you know. It's supposed to help understand the plays better.

Too bad it consists entirely of melodramatic men spouting poetry while wearing tights.

And do you know what the best part was? It starred Alan Rickman as Tybalt! Yes, THAT Alan Rickman. We laughed ourselves silly over 'Snape in tights'. So, of course, he killed Mercutio, and then Romeo (who is a grade-A certified idiot, in anyone's books) killed him to get revenge.

Ironically, Snape-in-tights was the least bad-looking dude int he play. (With the dubious exception of poor Balthasar.) Honestly, Romeo was hideous. The fluffy, curly, gray-blond hairstyle did NOT help.  Tybalt, on the other hand (a.k.a., Snape-in-tights) had a dark bowl cut and managed to actually look like Spock. And he managed to look like Spock without also looking completely ridiculous. So props to Alan Rickman for being the only part of the play I could take seriously.

But, really, Romeo and Juliet is in the rnning for Shakspeare's best comedy. I mean, it has lines of pure gold, like these:

(1) "I am slain!" - Well, yes, Paris, we sort of gathered that. Particularly as Romeo has just stabbed you three or four times.

(2) "Come tomorrow, I shall be a grave man." - Mercutio makes puns even as he dies. This line was funny even in the book.

(3) "The grrrrrrround is bloody!" - The way that dude said it wins the award for the best trilled r ever. He also wins the Legolas Award for Captain Obvious-ing.

(4) "A plague on both your houses!" - Mercutio said this at least three times, each time more dramatically than the last. The last time, he was being hauled away, bleeding. He had to pause to spit out blood in between words. Hilarious.

Now, I may sound like a sociopath or something here, but I was laughing through the whole movie. Honestly.

Do you know what I think would have made for a MUCH better ending? Juliet started ranting at one point about having to hide in a mausoleum with all these other dead bodies. I couldn't understand half of what she was saying, but I definitely heard Tybalt's name. And so - wouldn't it have been AWESOME if Tybalt had returned fromt he dead as a zombie and interrupted the wedding between Paris and Juliet??!! XD

I think it would have been the best plot twist of all time.

That, or when Romeo was doing his insane rambling in the mausoleum and started assuring Tybalt's dead body that it should be glad, since Romeo was killing himself and thus 'avenging' Tybalt's murder. Just take a moment and imagine Romeo's face if Tybalt had leapt up at that point (assuming zombies can leap) and had attacked him. Bonus points if he killed him and ate his brains.

Shakespeare could have brought a happy ending out of it that way. Zombie!Tybalt could have delayed Romeo long enough for Friar Lawrence to get there and explain everything. See? Ta-da! Instant happy ending. Zombies make everything better.

And how could anyone say no to Zombie Spock Snape In tights? I mean, really. It's made of win.

I know I'm right, because they've already made a movie on these lines. Warm Bodies is totally just Romeo and Juliet WITH ZOMBIES! However, that one begins with zombies. It doesn't save them for a surprising plot twist. That's why my idea is so much better. Someoen should stage it. You think you know how it will all end, and then... BLAM! Zombie!Tybalt saves the day.

I am a genius. XD

In Pace Christi,


Finally Got the New Josh Groban CD

Reading his acknowledgements at the end of the little lyrics booklet is always funny. I don't know why, it's just the comments he makes to various people who've helped him.

Also, Meav ni Mhaolchatha (sp?), formerly of Celtic Woman, did "She Moved Through the Fair" much better. Sorry, Josh, but it's the truth.

Lisa Kelly may have also done "The Moon's A Harsh Mistress" better. That, or I'm just used to hearing a lady's voice singing those songs. Also, David Downes did the piano for that version of it. He's good with a piano. I admire good piano playing.

In Pace Christi,


Monday, August 26, 2013

All My Fandoms Are Out To Kill Me With Feels

I finished season two of Sherlock.

Why was I given emotions?

In Pace Christi,


Do You Believe In Magic?

A birthday card I got a few years ago played this song. I loved it then, and I still love it now. Interestingly enough, it sparked one of my random poetic moods (I get hijacked by them about every three months), and this resulted, with a religious and philosophical bent to it:

Do I believe in magic?
Well, I have stood still in silence
And seen the Sun at it rises,
And an eagle as it flies.
I have seen the belt of stars
Glitter on a dark sea before my eyes.
And I have seen a King lifted up,
Bleeding and bright, on the world’s heights.
I confess the power of the Word.
I confess the Blood that made me.
Do I believe in magic?

Of course, that was a few years ago, so I'm not surprised, looking back upon this now, that it's a little... scattered. However, most of my poetical hijackings do result in disjointed ramblings upon religious and philosophical subjects, so this is typical.

This would also be a good point to say that it all also depends on how you define 'magic'. I generally avoid the usage of the term in my original fiction (and have correspondingly developed a bewildering array of terminology that I prefer... in English and in my original langague(s)... in order to discuss it intelligently, since I like magic systems that actually WORK in fantasy literature). However, sometimes in English conversations there is no way to avoid it.

I would like to indicate that I always use the word 'sorcery' to denote magic with infernal origins. And, yes, I do believe that can happen. The students in the Latin class I attended one lecture of may have laughed when the teacher made, jokingly or not, the comment that, "Latin is good for many things. Ah... exorcisms are one of them." But I wasn't laughing. Exorcisms may be the subject of horror flicks, but in real life they can be very Serious Business.

It is not against the powers of this world that we strive, but against principalities...

Since I'm in a bit of a nostalgic mood at the moment, here are some more songs that I like:

I prefer videos that contain the lyrics because they load much faster. Also, if I cannot understand what the singer is saying, the words are right there. Yep. Part of the reason I haven't been able to really get into the music the Civil Wars do/did is because I cannot understand what they are saying most of the time. Shame on me and all that, I know. Maybe I should swipe the CD case from my sister and read the lyrics. Maybe I should find YouTube videos that have the lyrics.

However, it's just not the type of music I prefer. I'm ashamed to say it, but I can't change the truth. I really don't have one specific genre of music that I prefer. I tend to handle it on a case-by-case basis instead. Which allows for a very wide and eclectic variety, I can tell you.

That does not mean that I consider the Civil Wars in the realm of 'bad' music, because I most certainly do not hold that opinion. I recognize that there are many types of music I do not personally like that are still good. However, there is music that I do not like that I consider inherently inferior due to its non-music-like qualities (i.e., a good deal of rap, which is more akin to noise rather than actual music).

A good deal of modern church music could be thrown into that category as well. Grr. :[ I had to play one this weekend - a hymn, mind you - that SHIFTED KEYS halfway through for the refrain! Additionally, the words did not rhyme or follow any sort of meter. The melody had no discernible pattern; it merely repeated itself occasionally.

In short, the song had no sort of internal coherence. Pure and simply, that song is a wreck, and whenever it comes up on the list I cringe. I just... Gah. Playing it is even worse than merely singing it, because it insistently gets stuck in my head. Why do all the bad songs turn out to be earworms???

I mean, even "Gather Us In" rhymes and has a catchy beat. This one, "At the Table of the World", fails in both respects. To boot, it's just another insipid song about social justice. Really, by the songs we sing, you'd think we came to Mass to sing about how we help other people, not to worship God.

Sorry. It's a pet peeve of mine.

I still believe in what is going on at the altar, after all. If anything should be labeled as magical or miraculous in this broken world, it's the Mass.

In Pace Christi,


Saturday, August 24, 2013

Why You Should Never Have Gollum Over For Dinner

This one should be self-explanatory.

(1) He refuses to use utensils. He has nine teeth left, and he will use them and his handses if he has to, yes, precious.

(2) He will eat your pets. Dogs, cats, rabbits, birds - they're all fair game. You have been warned.

(3) He may eat you as well, if he finds the meal unsatisfactory.

(4) He may challenge you to a game of riddles. If he does, you're doomed. If you lose, he will eat you. If you win, he will then attack you and try to eat you anyway. Be sure and have an Elven sword with you or a Ring of Power to buy yourself a little time.

(5) He will run off with a bottle of your Old Winywards without so much as a 'please' or 'thank you'. Chasing him with a broom is optional, but recommended.

(6) He will most likely refuse any food you offer anyway, as it is likely to be 'burned' and thus spoiled. "Keep your nasty chips!" he will cry, pushing away all normal Hobbit foods like bread, pretzels, cherries, apples, and carrots.

(7) He will then plunder your chicken house for a nice plump hen, and take a dive in your decorative fish pond for his seafood entree. Did you think he would ever settle for food that was not raw and wriggling?

Why did you even invite him over in the first place?


In Pace Christi,


More Fun With LEGOs And A Camera

"You're late."

"A wizard is never late. Nor is he early. He arrives precisely when he means to."

"Good morning!"

"What do you mean? Do you mean to wish me a good morning, or do you mean that it is a good morning, whether I want it or not? Or do you mean to say that you feel good on this particular morning, or are you simply stating that this is a morning to be good on?"

"...All of them at once, I suppose."


Gandalf is the king of witty comebacks, is he not? XD

In Pace Christi,


Fun With LEGOs And A Camera

As we all know, Thorin Oakenshield has no sense of direction. He lost his way in the Shire - twice. And while he will admit this fact, he will absolutely refuse, like any good man, to ask for directions.
Having accepted this fact, Balin and Bilbo, who are heartily sick and tired of wandering around the edges of Mirkwood, have prevailed upon Thorin to finally take a look at that map that Gandalf gave him. Thorin is not much better at reading maps, but he gives it his best shot. Bilbo and Balin are there to assist.

Meanwhile, that leaves Dwalin to babysit Fili and Kili. Dwalin is not amused by this. Fili and Kili were a handful when they were small, and they remain a handful now that they are grown.

Currently, they are climbing on some rocks. At least, Fili is courteous enough to help his little brother up. Dwalin looks on, prepared to gently bonk some sense into their heads with his warhammer if he feels they need some sense bonked into their heads.

Balin and Bilbo make no progress with Thorin. They cannot make heads nor tails of the map, for that matter. They decide that desperate times call for desperate measures, and wander off to ask - gasp! - the Elves for directions.

The Elves are also not amused by this.

Needless to say, it doesn't end well.

The Elves take issue with thirteen Dwarves and one Hobbit wandering around in their woods. They quickly capture the Dwarves, but miss Bilbo in all the confusion. Marching the Dwarves back to their underground stronghold, they lock the Dwarves in prison.

All is not lost, however. The Elves are quite happy with their success and go off to do what they do in Thranduil's realm the best: party. Before long, the Elf guards are thoroughly drunk.

Having reached the stage where they would most certainly be ticketed with a DUI by the Elven Police if they took Thranduil's Irish Elk out on a joyride, the Elf guards pass out. Safely invisible, thanks to the Ring, Bilbo leaves them snoring on the floor, snatches the key to the cells, and frees the Dwarves. Hooray!

And off they go on the next stage of their grand adventure!

XD I had a lot of fun with this. A camera, a bunch of LEGO's, and a couple of hours - priceless.

In Pace Christi,


Friday, August 23, 2013

Stick Figures Rule

No doubt, many of us have heard of the online comic strip consisting solely of stick figures by now: xkcd. I haven't seen too much of it, but what I have seen of it is hilarious (a few cartoons of it appear to be taped to the door of one of my chemistry teachers' office).

I especially appreciate this one from today:

Yay! Bonus points for The Silmarillion references, and for addressing the myth that everyone else in the time of Christopher Columbus believed the world was round. They did not. This is a myth perpetuated by people who want you to believe that the Catholic Church was stupid, superstitious, and uneducated, whereas clever Columbus was smarter than all those bishops and priests and knew his science.


In fact, we can blame Washington Irving for most of this Columbus-proved-the-world-was-round business. Since he's best known for The Legend of Sleepy Hollow, that should tell you about as much as you need to know about his reputation for historical accuracy. (I think he was also the one responsible for The Knickerbocker Tales, or whatever that book was called. Which also purported to be historical... with a decidedly fictional twist.)

Scholars knew the world was round by the time of St. Albert the Great and St. Thomas Aquinas (i.e., 13th century). In fact, Christopher Columbus was questioned by some scholarly clergy who worried that he had vastly underestimated the size of the Earth and that he would run out of supplies before he ever reached the Orient. Indeed, he had vastly underestimated the size of the Earth, and if the Americas had not been in his way he would have been doomed.

That being said, it would have made for an awesome plot twist if he had ended up in Valinor. Granted, he would not have been allowed to set foot on the shores of the Blessed Realm after that little fiasco with Ar-Pharazon, who tried to invade it, had rocks fall on his head, and is now sealed in a cave until the end of time. But it would still have been cool.

Granted, we wouldn't have heard from him ever again or would not have believed him, so it wouldn't have done any good. But still... nerds can dream on, can't we? XD

In Pace Christi,


A Blast From The Past

Hey, everybody, look! It's Bilbo Baggins/John Watson IN SPACE!!

So, always bring your towel or your handkerchief with you, and remember, DON'T PANIC!

In Pace Christi,


Thursday, August 22, 2013

More LEGO Goodness!!

Now presenting from Brotherhood Workshops the theatrical trailer for The Hobbit: The Desolation of Smaug... in LEGO format!!! Watch and enjoy. :)

In Pace Christi,


Trying To Save My Armitage Army Credentials Here


There, I saved my credentials. XD But, really, I didn't know a thing about it. I don't go looking up people's Wikipedia pages. (I try to remain a sane and non-stalky fan even on the Internet. Too many Google searches of finding insane fan tributes that... um... well, are insane, and you'll stop looking up people, too.) I rely on to tell me this sort of thing.

Oh, and, by the way, Sylvester McCoy (Radagast the Brown and the 7th Doctor from Doctor Who) celebrated his 705h birthday on August 20th. So happy belated birthday to Sylvester McCoy!

Anyway, back to our regularly scheduled programming.

You might ask why I keep posting that same picture of RA. Well, as I said before, I don't do much googling of actual people. I try to avoid the status of 'insane fan'. I prefer to remain sane, thank you very much. But I do have another picture I can share, if it will load.

It won't load! :(

I have another. Let's see if it will load.

:( :(

Why, oh, why, Blogger? Why have you taken to doing this to me of late? Grr.

However, I did look RA up on Wikipedia to make sure that it was his birthday, and I found this: "I was named Richard being born on the anniversary of Richard III's demise at Bosworth." So there is a historically-inclined tidbit for you all.

*goes off to fight with Blogger some more*

In Pace Christi,


Wednesday, August 21, 2013

I Don't Know Why I'm Sharing This

... Probably because I think it's funny.

Anyway, so I had a dream last night. Don't ask me how it started, because I don't remember. The upshot was that we (I'll get to who 'we' consisted of in just a moment) were in some house. It appeared that a party was going on. People were dancing. Yes, dancing. Weird. Doubly weird when you consider that I don't dance. At all.

Something bad was about to happen - I don't know what. My guess is that the enemies, whoever they were, were about to attack, right on the hour. The clock started chiming.

And then we set off a time bomb that froze time! Everyone stopped moving, except for us who had set off the bomb (don't ask me how, as I have no idea).

Now, who was 'we', you ask?
(1) Me. (2) Thorin Oakenshield. (2) Loki (3) Sif (the dark-haired Asgardian girl from Thor, if you don't remember) (4) Iron Man/Tony Stark

Somehow, light would reverse the time bomb, so we had to hurry to get whatever we needed to get before we ran out of time. (Apparently, the reason why time reversed the light bomb was because of e = mc^2, even though I know that's not what the equation means. *headbang*) I'm not sure if I was with Tony Stark (who was my age... weirdly enough...) rummaging through Albert Einstein's stuff or if it was me and a random person rumamging through Tony Stark's stuff.

Then my cousin showed up. I'm not sure why. He wasn't really there to help. He was weirdly dressed.

"Nice shoes," I said.

"Oh, they're Skeezers," he said.

My brain is weird. I don't even want to know if Skeezers are real are not.

And then I woke up, so I have no idea what happened!!!

I think this ranks up there with my Benedict-Cumberbatch-is-Sauron-and-his-fortress-is-made-out-of-LEGOs-and-looks-like-a-heavily-fortified-modern-high-school-complete-with-vending-machines dream. I always have weird dreams, but these were spectacularly weird.

They're funny, though, which is why I try to remember them. XD

In Pace Christi,


After Reading One Too Many Dust Jacket Blurbs

One of these days, I will write a story. That story will not have a blurb that will say anything along the lines of, "In this world/situation, everything is not as it seems."

That is because, in my story, everything will be as it seems. The hero will truly be a hero, the villain will truly be a villain, good will really be good, and evil will really be evil. Appearances may be deceiving, but the truth will not be deceiving. Evil may lie and cheat, but good will not.

That will be my story.

It will bomb, no one will read it, and the critics will bash it from one end of this country to the other.

But I will have said the truth. And the truth will never change.

The most important question really ought to be: How many of us can content ourselves with merely the true and the good? It's not an easy thing.

And so we start bending the rules a little so the world will like us. Compromising, giving a little here and a little there. But is any amount of compromise good?

...This post also appears to have been written after reading one too many philosophy books...

In Pace Christi,


Thursday, August 15, 2013

Catholic Memes Is Still At It



I love intelligent humor. And puns... yes, I will admit to a weakness to puns.

In Pace Christi,


Tuesday, August 13, 2013

Sheet Music

So yesterday I went to the music store and browsed through the sheet music. (Well, what else did you expect from a title like that?) I picked out three.

(1) "Believe" from The Polar Express

(2) "Jesu, Joy of Man's Desiring" (minus the words, sadly)

(3) And then, on a whim: "American Pie"

I love inflicting music I like on people. I'm just evil that way. XD

In Pace Christi,


Saturday, August 10, 2013

I Have A New Fandom (And Other Book Ramblings)

Declaration: I am now a member of the Artemis Fowl fandom.

Explanation: I read the first book years ago and thought it was okay, no more. I didn't bother to read the rest of the series. "It's just that book about a teenage criminal mastermind and some weird high-tech fairies," I assured myself. "Nothing interesting at all."

Then we went on vacation. The owners of the rental place had good taste in books, in some respects. Granted, they seemed to have every novel James Patterson has ever written, they had three books by Philip Pullman (can't think of the trilogy name, but the one with The Golden Compass, The Amber Spyglass, etc.), they had the first three books of the Inheritance Cycle (Eragon, Eldest, Brisingr), and they had Twilight. Just Twilight, though, and thankfully not the whole saga.

However, they had a Terry Pratchett book, so they couldn't be all bad. And it was the first Discworld book - The Colour of Magic! I have never found it anywhere else. So, yes, practically the first thing I did was sit down and read it. And it was glorious. (The thought of Twoflower being played by Sean Astin - a.k.a., Samwise Gamgee from LOTR - in the movie adaptaion had me alternately giggling and going, "Aww," as I read it.)

Then, as the Wi-Fi refused to work, I randomly decided to give Artemis Fowl a try. (My random decisions often turn out to be very good decisions. Reading LOTR was a random decision. Go figure.)

I had no idea which book in the series came next, and I didn't bother to look in the front to try and find out. (Why can't all books in a series come with numbers??) Fortunately, I remembered all the characters from the first book, one advantage of a pretty good mind for literature.

So I picked up The Time Paradox and blazed through it. MIND. BLOWN.

(Darn. And my 'Mind Blown' gif of Sherlock won't load.)

So then I picked up The Artic Incident, The Eternity Code, The Opal Deception, The Lost Colony, and The Last Guardian. Mysteriously, The Atlantis Complex was not among their book collection. *snaps fingers* Looks like I'll be making a trip to Books-a-Million in the near future...

Confession: I am now an ArtemisxHolly shipper. Oops.

Observation: All girls are shippers at heart. We really are. I shall endeavor to remain a sane shipper, however, and stem the tide.

Announcement: Any ArtemisxMinerva deserves to be Killed With Fire. Not only is she stupid and annoying (redeemably so, however, or she would have been a Mary Sue genderflip of Artemis), their names make it look like some sort of Greco-Roman Les Yay mythological mashup. *shivers*

Statement: There had better be some good fanfiction out there, because I need some to soothe my agitated feels after the ending of The Last Guardian. Like, hello! Eoin Colfer is in league with Rick Riordan. They really are, no joke! I should have known he would be a troll of an author on that account alone! And he is. Masterfully so. My family was probably not surprised to see me march stiffly by to get the next book int he series while muttering, "The author is a troll! He's in league with Rick Riordan - I should have seen this coming!" and disappearing again for the next three hours.

What? I came out for mealtimes and family activities, I assure you. Sleep? No, I don't need sleep. What is this 'sleep' concept of which you speak?

So, yes, now I have a new fandom to eat my brain. Yay. *shakes fist at Eoin Colfer* I was doing just fine with my two dozen other fandoms before you had to do this to meeeeeee! It's all your fault I am sitting here alternately screaming at a book or giggling like a loon over an Irish teenaged criminal mastermind - oh, excuse me, juvenile genius. It's all your fault!

It's kind of interesting, though, watching Artemis go from an entirely cold-hearted boy to a young man who *SPOILERS* lays down his life to protect fairykind and humanity. It happened somewhere in The Lost Colony, I think. Possibly at the moment where Holly gets shot and dies (whimpering, "Artemis... Artemis, help me," which was the WORST part), and Artemis just looks over at her but has to keep on going with what he's doing - though he's crying - and then he takes advantage of the unraveling time spell to fire a bolt into the past and knock out the demon before he could kill HOlly, thus ensuring she never died at all... GAH.

Then tehy get mixed up teleporting back to their time and space from the demon dimension; their eyes are now mismatched: Artemis has one of Holly's hazel ones, and she has one of his blue ones. And then to find out that they've been gone three years and his family has given him up for dead and he has two younger brothers now... GAH.

Then, in The Last Guardian, everything goes wrong and Opal Koboi is about to unleash Armageddon on the earth; Butler's down, and the twins and Juliet have been possessed, and there's nothing left... Artemis has his plan, but he knows he's likely going to die in it, and Holly tries to stop him but he expected that and planned accordingly. And he goes out and fools Opal Koboi - megalomaniac, insanely smart, insanely powerful Opal Koboi - and cancels the apocalypse, and it looks like he's about to escape... And then the fairy eye of Holly's that he still has prevents him from escaping the ring of destruction, since it means he's not fully human, and he dies... and Holly and Butler have to watch it... GAH.

Why was I given emotions?


So, um, yeah, somewhere along there... at the end of The Lost Colony, I stopped thinking of Artemis as a boy and started thinking of him as a man. (Not in that sense. Get your minds out of the gutter.) I don't know... it's hard to explain. He wasn't a child any longer. He had the responsibilities, talents, and duties of an adult, and he was actually trying and doing his best to fulfill them.

A similar moment happened for me with Percy Jackson. (*MORE massive spoilers*) He's his loveably dork self all through PJATO, and then he's missing in The Lost Hero, but we get him back in The Son of Neptune. I was counting down the days till that book came out - kept referring to it on my blog here, too. When I got it and read it, I breathed a sigh of relief. Percy hadn't changed. At least, it didn't look that way at first.

But seeing him through the POV of other characters began it. At sixteen, he was the experienced campaigner, the one they relied on. He was the Team Dad, looking out for Frank and Hazel - a trait only intensified in The Mark of Athena. He literally was the glue holding everyone together.

And don't even get me started on his connection to Annabeth. It's a better love story than Twilight in more ways than words can describe. It's not an infatuation. It's genuine love. She was the only thing that the head goddess of Olympus could not wipe from his mind, since his devotion to Annabeth was that strong. He loves Annabeth, but he still holds to his duty - going to Alaska to save the eagle and defeat Alcyoneus, letting her go on her own to follow the Mark of Athena and face Arachne, whatever he has to do. They have genuine respect and friendship between them - they're equals. They trust each other absolutely.

At the end of PJATO, Percy comments that his relationship with Annabeth is a solid foundation for the future, and it is. Oh, it is. The most heartwarming/heartbreaking moment of them all, the one that really takes the cake, is from The Son of Neptune, when Percy is in New Rome and sees an older demigod couple watching their child chase the pigeons. He starts wondering if he and Annabeth will ever have a family...

Now, if that doesn't make you tear up, I don't know what will. *cries like a baby*

It was probably that scene there that made me no longer think of Percy as a boy, but rather as a man. He has grown up. And now he's fallen into Tartarus with Annabeth rather than let go of her, and we have been waiting almost a yera to find out what happens to them...

*shakes fist* Thanks a lot, Rick Riordan.

Addendum: One fandom I did NOT join this week is that of Fablehaven. The first book of that series was also at the rental place. Having run out of Discworld and Artemis Fowl (I read six books on vacation... yeah, typical me), I picked it up out of boredom. Halfway through the book, I felt like banging my head on the wall. I put the book down - some of the worst censure I can give. The main characters were SO stupid! Kendra had some common sense, but Seth deserved to get eaten alive by the worst critter in the refuge. I mean, he was the very epitome of Too Stupid To Live. He thoughtlessly, stubbornly, and rebelliously breaks every rule their grandfather gives them to keep them safe, and INVITES MALICIOUS FAIRY CRITTERS INTO THE HOUSE!!! Idiot. I was hoping he would die in some horrific manner, but no such luck.

Then Kendra, his sister, whom I had approved of so far for her (relative) good sense, told him it wasn't his fault, but rather that of the fairies since they're evil and chose to do that, etc. I was like, "What the blank??!!" I realize she was trying to comfort him, but seriously... it WAS his fault! The fairies could have done nothing to him if he hadn't willfully broken all the rules he had been given. Not only did he endanger himself, he endangered everyone else, too. I half wish a werewolf had chomped him in half or something.

Oh, and their grandfather isn't blameless, either. He says they can't go into the woods at first because of ticks and Lyme's disease (fair enough), a standard enough plot device of lies to keep the kids away from secret mythical critters. THEN he gives Kendra a set of keys and tells her to find what they go to - ultimately, it means they drink magic milk (me: o.O "REALLY? What kind of cows do they come from?") and can then see fairies. So he wants them to figure it out on their own that he lied to them and he's hiding all sorts of mythical critters?? Who knows what they might have done (and did do) unsupervised with that information!

And THEN he has the idiocy to say that he will need successors to run the refuce when he's gone. All well and good... but they're apparently still preteens! Clearly, neither of them are ready for any sort of responsibility, and who knows if they will be ready in half a dozen years in the future? A person's character can change so rapidly as a child and teenager. Did they have to be still children for it to work - the whole 'only children believe in fairies' spiel? If so, that should have been spelled out. As it is, it feels like the plot is another case of, "Oh, these kids are so special they can do everything, and Adults Are Useless and should let the heroes handle it instead of being allowed to intellignetly and competently deal with the problems!"

I hate those plots. Harry Potter was basically that plot. (I hold Dumbledore in especial contempt for allowing three eleven-year-olds to put themselves in mortal danger via most poweful evil wizard of their time because he thought Harry had the 'right' to face Voldemort because ol' Voldie killed his parents. I want to slap Dumbledore repeatedly and go, "HE WAS ONLY ELEVEN!! ELEVEN!!!!" Sheesh, that series has more evidence for Dumbledore being a magical cousin of the Emperor from Star Wars than of being the great force for good he's commonly assumed to be. In fact, I love fanfics that go that route. Not to say that the occasional good!Dumbledore fic is not unappreciated. It's just that... let's just say I find it easier to believe Loki can be redeemed than Dumbledore, okay?)

Speaking of which... I now have a LEGO Loki keychain. Yes, Loki of Asgard is burdened with a glorious purpose... to guard my keyring. Oh, and I had an extra LOTR elf sword, so I gave it to him. Now he has his Glowstick of Destiny. I should take a picture and put it up on my blog...

I don't know. Fablehaven may have answered all my questions in the next chapter. Maybe Seth would have learned his lesson after his latest near grisly demise and learned to FOLLOW THE RULES. Maybe Kendra would have grown a spine and reined him in. Maybe. But I doubt it. So, while I applaud Brandom Muil (I keep wanting to call him Emyn Muil... sigh... too much LOTR) for intelligent villains and (apparently) a working magic system, I must sigh and turn away form his books on account of their extremely slow build - let's just say I wasn't exactly riveted by the opening chapters - and idiot characters. Particularly on account of the idiot characters.

Now, I realize that dumb characters have their places. But when they are willfully and maliciously idiotic... putting themselves and everyone else in harm's way out of curiosity they have repeatedly been warned to curb and out of a stupid, stubborn desire to be always right... headbang. I mean, you'd think after Seth turned (accidentaly, I'll grant him that) a fairy into an evil, hideous imp and got turned into a big pink walrus by the other fairies in retribution, he would learn to follow the rules. Apparently not. Do you see why I was beginning to hope he would experience some sort of horrific death?

However, I am a Genre Savvy Reader (and Viewer, when it comes to movies), and I knew that wasn't going to happen. Not in a kids' book. Maybe he would learn his lesson and save the day that way. More likely (and following in the footsteps of Harry Potter) he would continue to break all the rules and do incredibly stupid things, and still somehow save the day and so get praised and rewarded instead for it. Seriously, Harry's rule-breaking gets rewarded all the time. It gets so egregious that Snape really starts looking logical about the whole matter. Grr.

Okay, rant over. You can come out of hiding now.

Positive Statement: At least I good a good example of 'How Not To Write' out of it. There's always that.

In Pace Christi,


Friday, August 2, 2013

GKC For the Win

I have just finished In Defense of Sanity, which is a collection of essays by the amazing Gilbert Keith Chesterton. Among them were included (1) an essay on chese - yes, chese and (2) an essay on Jane Austen.

I knew I loved GKC for a reason.

So now, yes, I am here to share favorite quotes with you all.

p. 309 - Generally, the difficulty is not to tolerate other people's religion. The trouble is to tolerate our own religion. Or rather (to speak more strictly), to get our own religion to tolerate us. Comparatively few modern religious people are intolerant. But a great many modern religious people are intolerable. Nor are these specially those that are called bigots; it is rather, I think, the other way. The person we really find exasperating is he who does not understand our beliefs, and yet also does not agree with his own.
p.334 - Some people fear that philosophy will bore or bewilder them; because they think it is not only a string of long words, but a tangle of complicated notions. These people miss the whole point of the modern situation. These are exactly the evils that exist already; mostly for want of a philosophy. The politicians and the papers are always using long words. It is not a complete consolation that they use them wrong. The political and social relations are already hopelessly complicated. They are far more complicated than any page of mediaeval metaphysics; the only difference is that the mediaevalist could trace out the tangle and follow the complications; and the moderns cannot. The chief practical things of today, like finance and political corruption, are frightfully complicated. We are content to tolerate them because we are content to misunderstand them, not to understand them. The business world needs metaphysics -- to simplify it.
p.337 - 338 - Anyhow, what do modern men say when apparently confronted with [a miracle], something that cannot, in the cant phrase, be naturally explained? Well, most modern men immediately talk nonsense. When such a thing is currently mentioned, in novels or newspapers or magazine stories, the first comment is always something like, "But, my dear fellow, this is the twentieth century!" It is worth having a little training in philosophy if only to avoid looking so ghastly a fool as that. It has on the whole rather less sense or meaning than saying, "But my dear fellow, this is Tuesday afternoon."
If miracles cannot happen, they cannot happen in the twentieth century or in the twelfth. If they can happen, nobody can prove that there is a time when they cannot happen. The best that can be said for the skeptic is that he cannot say what he means, and therefore, whatever else he means, he cannot mean what he says. But if he only means that miracles can be believed in the twelfth century, but cannot be believed in the twentieth, then he is wrong again, but in theory and in fact. He is wrong in theory, because an intelligent recognition of possibilities does not depend on a date but on a philosophy…
Let us not be too severe on the worthy gentleman who informs his dear fellow that it is the twentieth century. In the mysterious depths of his being even that enormous ass does actually mean something. The point is that he cannot really explain what he means; and that is the argument for a better education in philosophy. What he really means is something like this, "There is a theory of this mysterious universe to which more and more people were in fact inclined during the second half of the eighteenth and the first half of the nineteenth centuries; and up to that point at least, this theory did grow with the growing inventions and discoveries of science to which we owe our present social organization - or disorganization. That theory maintains that cause and effect have from the first operated in an uninterrupted sequence like a fixed fate; and that there is no will behind or within that fate; so that it must work itself out in the absence of such a will, as a machine must run down in the absence of a man. There were more people in the nineteenth century in in the ninth who happened to hold this particular theory of the universe. I myself happened to hold it; and therefore I obviously cannot believe in miracles." That is perfectly good sense; but so is the counter-statement, "I do not happen to hold it; and therefore I obviously can believe in miracles."
p. 338 - The advantage of an elementary philosophic habit is that it permits a man, for instance, to understand a statement like this, "Whether there can or cannot be exceptions to a process depends on the nature of that process." The disadvantage of not having it is that a man will turn impatiently even from so simple a truism; and call it metaphysical gibberish. He will then go off and say: "One can't have such things in the twentieth century," which really is gibberish.
I had some nice GKC meme-like things with shorter, much more manageable quotes from him, but Blogger refuses to load them. Bad Blogger.

*goes off to sulk*

In Pace Christi,


An Admission

Okay, okay, you win, Internet. Especially you, Tumblr.

I give up. I admit defeat. I have caved in to the enormous pressure of your pictures and gifs, your video clips and constant barrage of fangirl propaganda.


*goes off to try and regain sanity*

In Pace Christi,


P. S. I still prefer John Watson.