By Request, ‘In the Garden’

Oops! What with all the hurly-burly here today, I almost let this hymn request slip past. Glad I remembered it.

Requested by Phoebe, In the Garden. I selected this rendition by Alan Jackson–nice and mellow, isn’t it?

My Writing Mentors

Livy (3) - Livius

Titus Livius–a great historian

[Let’s see how much I can get done before taking Robbie to the vet.]

It might be asked of me, “Hey, you’ve got a book to write! What the dickens are you doing, sitting there and reading Livy?”

For those who don’t know, Livy, aka Titus Livius, was an historian who lived in Augustus’ Caesar’s time and wrote a history of Rome going all the way back to the beginning. I read the edition published in several volumes by Penguin Books. Livy was suspected of having republican sentiments at a time when maybe it wasn’t such a good idea to have them; but as Augustus himself often said, “I’m a republican at heart,” he was hardly likely to persecute Livy for sharing them.

When I’m working on a book, it helps me a lot to select another writer as my mentor. For my previous book, Ozias, Prince in Peril, my mentor was Geoffrey of Monmouth, whose History of the Kings of Britain (including King Arthur), was a runaway best-seller… in the 12th century!

Now I’m writing Ozias, Prince Enthroned, and Livy has stepped forward as my mentor. Not that I’m imitating him; rather, I see in his work an inspiration for my own. Livy wrote real history, while I have to invent a history for a fantasy world. His vivid descriptions and keen analysis of early Rome’s one-after-another social, political, and military crises suggest to me the kinds of things that King Ozias would have to deal with. How should he respond to crisis? Livy knows! In fact, he knows about not only successful responses, but also failures.

Prince Enthroned is going forward rather slowly, from my end; but my editor, having read my most recent set of chapters, says “You’ve got your foot on the gas pedal, haven’t you?” I take that as encouragement.

I now suspect that maybe the Lord wants me to slow down a little. Okay. I’ll try that. A good book is worth taking risks for. Not to mention the abundant distractions we’ve had this year: Patty’s hernia, new computer, refrigerator dies and we lose a raft of frozen food, and my accident that badly damaged Patty’s car, and now Robbie’s sick. Oh–and tons and tons of really bad weather, lots of workdays lost.

So I hope it’s sunny and clear tomorrow, and that Robbie will get better, and that I can start another set of chapters. For “hope” read “pray.”

Cardinal Burke Has Serious Doubts

Raymond Leo Burke - Wikipedia

Cardinal Burke

Back in August Raymond Cardinal Burke and several others sent a message to Pope Francis asking for answers to certain “dubia”–doubts–that have concerning some of his theology. The full communication, Notification to Christ’s Faithful, is available online (

No. 1 on their list of “dubia” is this: Should the church “reinterpret Divine Revelation according to the cultural and anthropological changes in vogue”? I’m guessing these cardinals don’t want to do that but they’re afraid this pope does.

They’re also asking if this pope is suggesting that “the theology of the Church has changed.” For instance: Does every sin get forgiven, whether or not the sinner repents? I think that’s a very slippery slope. So do the cardinals. They think the Church could be led into “confusion and error.”

No answer has been received from the Vatican. The doubts continue unresolved.

The Church that belongs to Jesus Christ Our Lord transcends denominations. We should all be praying for “the ten just men” within the Roman Catholic Church. And stand together with them.

‘Kowabunga! “Fat Studies”!’ (2020)


Ready for his Ph. D.!

This is another one of those Far Left storms of idiocy that crept up on us unawares and now we can’t get rid of it.

When did obesity become something to be “proud” of?

Kowabunga! ‘Fat Studies’!

Yee-ha! Go to college, grab some knowledge! For a mere hundred and fifty thousand smackers, a degree in Fat Studies can be yours! And think what you can do with it! Line your bird cage, paper your walls, wrap fish… hummm baby, higher education!


‘Immortal, Invisible, God Only Wise’

No hymn requests this morning, have to go grocery-shopping in the morning, Robbie to the vet’s this afternoon…

So I picked out this one for you: Immortal, Invisible, God Only Wise, sung by the Smucker Family. Background sets by God the Father, work of his hands.

Bunny Honeys

It’s amazing how domestication can change animals’ behavior. When you see a bunny cuddling up to a dog for a nap, you haven’t necessarily died and gone to Heaven. Although I’m pretty sure there are both dogs and bunnies there.

Bonus Video: Cat, Dog, and ‘Mission: Impossible’

Sorry! I just cannot write any nooze today. Haven’t even read any. Besides, who can resist that classic Mission: Impossible theme music by Lalo Schiffren?

So watch these two try to open the door whose knob is just out of reach. What do you suppose is on the other side of the door, that makes them so anxious to open it?

Who ever had this much fun with pet spider crabs?

The Legend of Doris Pokeweed (‘Oy, Rodney’)

a gripping page-turner headed for the top of the NY Times bestseller list | Romance novels, Funny romance, Book parody

There are too many June Taylor Dancers to fit into Scurveyshire’s rustic little gaol and Constable Chumley has sought enlightenment at the bottoms of several tankards of ale at The Lying Tart.

Introducing Chapter DCLXXII of her epic romance, Oy, Rodney, Violet Crepuscular braces her readers for suspense. “THIS,” she writes in all caps, “is where the legendary Doris Pokeweed comes into the story.” {Editor sweeps his papers to the floor and goes to join Constable Chumley at the pub.]

In what way, shape, or form is this Doris Pokeweed legendary?

“No one in Scurveyshire can remember a time when Doris Pokeweed didn’t live here,” Ms. Crepuscular cavitates. “Popular belief credits her with immortality. ‘She rode with Boudicca,’ says Johnno the Merry Minstrel, ‘and bowled with Francis Drake.’ I’d call that pretty legendary!”

But there is a fly in the ointment. (There! Got him out.)

June Taylor herself has fallen for Lord Jeremy Coldsore and wants to bring him back to the Twentieth Century with her–where his two left feet will make him a celebrity, if not a cash cow.

“Do not think this has escaped the notice of Lady Margo Cargo, Lord Jeremy’s betrothed,” Ms. Crepuscular writes. But for the time being I must leave you in suspense!”

‘”Everything Is Bad for You'” (2020)

Crazy Cat GIFs | Tenor

Experts! If we listened to them and never ate,drank, did, or thought of the things they say we should never eat, drink, do, or think–we’d be ghosts.

‘Everything Is Bad for You’

(If you start to feel oogy while looking at that cat picture, surely there’s a bunch of tests that you can take! Keep testing until you find out you’re sick.)

I wonder what it would be like, to follow all the expert advice you’ve ever heard. All of it.

Sounds like an essay contest in the making.

‘Amazing Grace’

I felt called to hear this hymn, this morning: Amazing Grace, sung by Alan Jackson. It made me cry a little, but that’s okay. The Lord understands. Yes, He knows.