Sunday, March 29, 2009

Smoky Mountain NP

Morning mood.

An old school house -- built late 1800s. Bottom timber estimated > 2 feet wide.

Fire Pink: one of 14 flowers we identified on Chestnut Tops Trail.

Evening view from Chimney Tops.

Wednesday, March 25, 2009

The problem with...

Argument against swearing:

Presupposition: That every individual is entitled to a basic dignity of existence.

I. Dignity of existence is contingent upon a modicum of personal privacy.
II. Personal privacy is a circle in which one stands alone.
III. To cross the circle without the consent of the individual in the circle constitutes a violation of personal privacy, and therefore represents a lessening of that individual's dignity of existence.
IV. Some swear words describe extremely private functions.
V. To mention an extremely private function to another person without their foreknowledge or consent represents a violation of personal privacy: the circle is transected.
VI. These swear words represent a violation against another's dignity of existence.

This does not include all swear words. I cannot make an impartial argument against those swear words which show no respect to my faith. I may only assert that this remainder of swear words make a mockery of what I hold most dear.

I appeal to my fellow students to consider their words. The swearing I hear here is either:
A) A violation against another's dignity of existence
B) Hurtful to another on the basis of faith

1. Swearing gets redundant. Oxford english dictionary credits the english language with 500,000 words (actually a rather conservative estimate)-- the odds that a swear-word qualifies as the best descriptor are therefore very low.

2. I detest the way in which people abbreviate swear words to make them "good." If swearing here is rife (it is), this is endemic. These narcissists are unwilling to take the responsibility for saying the actual word, but want to enjoy the naughty feelings that accompany their forays into moral turpitude. Yuck.

Thursday, March 19, 2009

Batter my heart, three-personed God; for you
As yet but knock, breathe, shine, and seek to mend;
That I may rise and stand, o'erthrow me, and bend
Your force to break, blow, burn, and make me new.
I, like an usurped town, to another due,
Labor to admit you, but O, to no end;
Reason, your viceroy in me, me should defend,
But is captived, and proves weak or untrue.
Yet dearly I love you, and would be loved fain,
But am betrothed unto your enemy.
Divorce me, untie or break that knot again;
Take me to you, imprison me, for I,
Except you enthrall me, never shall be free,
Nor ever chaste, except you ravish me.

John Donne -- 1633

Wednesday, March 11, 2009

Spring break was wonderful. The trip up to maine meant ample food, warmth, and comfort to recuperate from the sickness that struck me there.

Now back to the books, at least til April 29 -- A mere 49 days away!