Wednesday, April 23, 2008

Someone Has Finally Summarized What I Really Mean When I Say I Hate Politics

"Excuse me while I filter my politics through my faith rather than the converse."

Thank you. That's what I've been trying to say.

Michelle Malkin ticked me off the other day. I really don't recall the Holy Father ever saying we should open our borders and let everyone in, but since he's in-line with Holy Mother Church and not Holy Mother Party, he's anathema.

Then again, she also says on her blog that she left the Catholic church, in part, for "its stance on illegal immigration".

Is it just me, or is that just totally backwards?

Lest anyone stumble onto this post and hang me for an amnesty enthusiest, let it be known I'm not. I think people should play by the rules, dadgummit, and people who don't pay and have never paid taxes shouldn't get tax-payers benefits (which seems like a "duh" to me). I also think Christians are called to do what they can to uphold human dignity and preserve families.

Wait... I think I just mixed parts from two opposing political view points. Crap! Take cover! Your monitor is about to explode!

I hate politics. Have I mentioned that?

Tuesday, April 22, 2008

One More Reason Salesians Rock

From Paul at Alive and Young.

Pope Posts, pt 3: A Flashback

When I was a college sophomore, long ages ago (she quipped, with tongue firmly in cheek), Pope John Paul II went home. I was, like many other Catholics, especially young Catholics, deeply affected by his passing and could not imagine having a different pope than the one I had known my whole life.

On a Tuesday morning, about two weeks after John Paul's death, a week and a half since his burial, and a day since the Conclave had begun, I was passing through the student center between classes. It was my habit to get something fast and unhealthy to eat while doing the reading I'd put off to the last possible. There was a study lounge that had once been a church, and despite the taupe paint and aisles of couches rather than pews, it still had a peaceful stillness about it that made it my go-to after I was done eating. If memory serves, that's where I was headed when I got a call (perhaps it was a text?) from my mom.

"There's white smoke!"

I stopped dead in my tracks. Where's the nearest tv?, I thought,and spun around, bolting back to the food court. Thankfully one of the monitors was already on a news network, because at that moment I had no qualms whatsoever with changing it from MTV, no matter how many people were watching. Suddenly oblivious to my peers, I dragged a chair under the TV and turned the volume up as loud as it would go, which still barely carried over the din of shuffling, munching, and gossip. My mom and a church friend were both sending me play-by-play texts as I stood under the TV with my hands over my heart and my jaw hung open.

I'd made it in time to catch that remarkable announcement: "Habemus Papam!" The sense that I was caught up with a billion other Catholics and untold other interested parties in a monumental moment grew as I watched the scores of faithful in St. Peter's doing exactly the same thing I was doing. I remember hardly being able to breath, and laughing at myself because I was about to start crying in the middle of Trabant. I never cry.

I thought, "I wonder if it's Ratzinger." His was one of the few "candidate" faces I was familiar with because he had presided at John Paul II's funeral, which I had stayed up all night to watch. I had decided I liked him.

And sure enough, his was the name called. He would now be called Benedict, and as he emerged onto the balcony, I found myself grinning ear to ear (probably looking utterly nuts to my more secularly minded bretheran), and excited. For what, I didn't know. Probably whatever it was God had in store for us through this man.

Last week, just days before the third anniversary of his election, as I was sitting in Nationals Stadium waiting for the Holy Father's arrival, my mind wandered back to that day and I again felt that unique sense of unity. Again, I simultaneously teared up and smiled.

God never disappoints.

Pope Posts, pt 2: A Plethora of Papa Pictures

Truthfully, it's not quite a plethora, but I couldn't let an alliteration like that go.

I've yet to figure out how to slow the blasted thing down. You can click through one at a time, or see the pictures bigger and at your own pace by clicking on the little logo in the bottom right corner.

Monday, April 21, 2008

My room exploded

I havent cleaned up at all following my back to back trips that had me out of town six of the last nine nights. Guess what im doing tonight.

Sunday, April 20, 2008

Friday, April 18, 2008

Pope Posts, pt 1.5: Promise to Post More

I know, I'm the lamest blogger ever.

I have quite a few pictures and puny thoughts to share, but have not yet gone through the process of picking which from the well of the aforementioned I will actually thrust upon you.

In the meantime, check out the little thingy on the right, in which you will see some of my "shared" posts from other, better blogs. Good stuff.

Pope Posts, pt 1: A Pleasant Surprise

My internal monologue sitting in Nationals Stadium reading the program after communion: Oh, I love Panis Angelicus. Good choice. Wait, wha--? Placido Domingo?? Like, the actual guy? No way. (Placido appears on the giant screen) Well look at that. Cool! Hey! Everyone quit clapping, we're at mass!

Panis angelicus
fit panis hominum;
Dat panis coelicus
figuris terminum:
O res mirabilis!
Manducat Dominum
Pauper, servus et humilis.
Te trina Deitas
unaque poscimus:
Sic nos tu visita,
sicut te colimus;
Per tuas semitas
duc nos quo tendimus,
Ad lucem quam inhabitas.


The Bread of Angels
becomes the bread of men;
The Bread of heaven
ends all prefigurations:
What wonder!
a poor and humble servant
consumes him, the Lord.
We beg of You,
God, One in Three
that you visit us,
as we worship You.
By your ways,
lead us who seek
the light in which You dwell.

Thursday, April 17, 2008

A few more people than yesterday

If i remember right the Holy Father is scheduled to enter in about half an hour. The choir is doing a beautiful job - especially my sister. Lots of excitement and Vatican flags in the air.

Wednesday, April 16, 2008

Papal choir practice

Less than 24 hours to go. Lots of musicians and parents (and a few siblings) of little musicians. This is going to be a big deal.

Monday, April 14, 2008

File Under "Put a Sock in It!" pt 2

I can understand when people disagree with a Church teaching. The reality is they don't actually understand the teaching, but most of the time you can see where they're coming from.

It's when people say stuff that is either utterly ignorant or abjectly inflammatory (and in either case is abysmally stupid) that I get annoyed.

"[Pope Benedict XVI] has issued some of the most hurtful and extreme rhetoric against our community of any religious leader in history, and we want to call him into account for the damage that he's done," said Marianne Duddy-Burke, executive director of DignityUSA.

(The rest)

...Seriously? For the gay cause, out of all of history, Pope Benedict is the most damaging religious leader ever? Not the ones who burned homosexuals at the stake? Or those leaders in Islam who will flat out tell you homosexuals should be killed?

Well, I guess being told you immortal soul is loved but in danger, and that you need to change is a lot more threatening than violence.

Benny Says Hello

I've fallen behind in my blog reading (450+ unread posts when I sat down a little while ago), and somehow missed this video.

Watching this fills me with a sudden and enlivening excitement. I've been so preoccupied by preparing my plans, etc., for my prolonged absence, I hadn't stopped to consider that I'll be seeing the Holy Father in a mater of days. Slightly more than twenty four hours from now, I'll touch down at BWI, and about 36 hours later I'll see the man in person.


And yes, he is "only a man", but so is my dad. That doesn't make him any less important to me, and I am close to speechless about seeing the Vicar of Christ in the same physical space with me.

I am compelled, at this moment, to express my deep gratitude for this chance. It seems every passing day shows me to be even more fortunate than I had realized myself to be, when I have done exactly nothing to deserve it.

So, thanks, for everything.

Sunday, April 13, 2008

Reposting the VIDES clip

For one, because I post so much it got lost and I want to promote VIDES as much as I can before I must leave them. Secondly, I still don't have time or energy to post anything real, but I post so much filler, this disappeared quickly.

Thusly, here it is again.

Saturday, April 12, 2008


Because apparently my mobile posts now have this flotsam appended to them:

This message was sent using the Picture and Video Messaging service from Verizon Wireless!

To learn how you can snap pictures and capture videos with your wireless phone visit

To play video messages sent to email, QuickTime� 6.5 or higher is required. Visit to download the free player or upgrade your existing QuickTime� Player. Note: During the download process when asked to choose an installation type (Minimum, Recommended or Custom), select Minimum for faster download.

That's not at all excessive.

Friday, April 11, 2008

Wednesday, April 9, 2008

Best. Scene. Ever.

Not to be confused with the Best. Movie. Ever.

"But Andie, I thought you were all busy getting ready to ditch your job for a week straight!"

Oh, hush. There's always time for Ferris.

Two of the Very Best Things About U of Delaware

July 2007

My roommate and my favorite junk place to eat.

My Sister is Singing for the Pope, and I'm Still Deep, I Swear

It's just that I'm also in deep.

Do forgive the lack of substantial blogging and the abundance of student quotes and links. The next couple of weeks are going to be pretty nutty, and I'm trying to get ahead of the game. To wit:
  • Going to Indiana early Friday morning for an orientation/retreat thinger.
  • Coming back late Sunday night
  • Field trip to Sea World next Tuesday (Hell. Yes.)
  • Leaving for Maryland Tuesday evening...
  • take Melissa to her dress rehearsal on Wednesday...
  • sing for the Holy Father on Thursday!
I don't know if I've mentioned that here, but now you know. Fish Face was chosen by lottery for the Papal Children's choir that will sing at the mass in Nationals Stadium next Thursday, and she asked me to come be her chaperon. She only got one ticket for a grown up, so I was honored and touched, and really freakin' excited.

Anyway, if you do the math, that means of ten school days I'm only teaching five, so I have a boat load of stuff to do to make sure my classes are actually taught something during me extensive absence. I used to think when my teachers missed school, it was just a nice day off for them, but I see now how wrong that is. Getting ready to be out might be more work than being there in the first place, never mind the anxiety about my classes getting off track this close to the end of the year.

But for Notre Dame, Sea World, the Pope, and my family, it's totally worth it.

Song Inexplicably Stuck in My Head All Day

Dunno why, but I felt I should bring this back:

New Matt Maher album

Came in the mail. And its signed. This dork is excited.

Tuesday, April 8, 2008

Let the Flame Go!

No that anyone asked me, but I agree with this guy:
A symbol like that, carried by young people who want to deliver a message of peace, should be allowed to pass.
-Henri Serandour, head of the French Olympic Committee, after Paris's Olympic torch relay was disrupted Monday by Free Tibet demonstrations
I'm not what you could call "pro China" or anything, but the Olympic flame is not a symbol of China.  I think it's a darned shame to put the thing out when it not only has nothing to do with any of China's questionable (to put it lightly) policies, it stands for ideals that might, in the long run, have something to do with fixing that situation.
The Olympics are, of course, focused on competition, but I have always loved all that "coming together" business.  It's just so lovely and noble and stuff.  Contrary-wise*, I understand wanting to boycott, or something along those lines, which would be more effective and less "random jerk with an agenda" than dousing the flame, ya know?
And that's my learned opinion on that.
*rehearsals for Looking Glass Land are getting to me...

My Kids Are on a Roll

6th Grade Student: I found a guy to hook you up with.
Me: What makes you think I need to be hooked up?
6th Grade Student: I feel guilty, you being all alone when I have someone.

File Under "Put a Sock in It"

I was looking up definitions of "business casual" and stumble on this article, in which a girl about my age was told by a coworker her shorts were too casual for work.  Her response (emphasis mine):
"Each generation seems to have a different idea of what is acceptable in the workplace, and in this situation I was highly offended," says Cohen, who works at a marketing firm in Philadelphia. "I was actually not allowed to attend a meeting because my attire was deemed 'inappropriate.' People my age are taught to express themselves, and saying something negative about someone's fashion is saying something negative about them."

...Seriously?  Really?
I don't think I need to comment on that, but you, Dear Readers, should feel free to do so.


Topic: If you could meet any one person currently living, who would it be and why?
6th grade boy: Mariah Carey... or Alicia Keys... or that girl I liked in kinder...

Aw, Mary, Help of Christians...

(In math lab, in which students reinforce material from their math classes with work generated by a fancy computer program, which the teacher prints out)
Me: Ok, the people on their board are waiting for work, which Felicia is picking up from the printer.  That means the rest of you should have work, so you know what to do.
Student: (after a long pause) ...What?

Noble steed or a message from the 5th grade mafia?

I walked in my classroom this morning to find this on my desk. Either someone brought in a prop for the play, or i have finally pushed a student over the edge.

Monday, April 7, 2008


At Sr. Gloria's request, I put this little movie together. I was trying to sum up with a bunch of pictures and a few words what VIDES is about. Enjoy, and I welcome your feedback!

Friday, April 4, 2008

Not a Movie About Africa

At dinner.

Sr. Rosann: Did you see No Country for Old Men?
Me: No, but I wanted to. It's supposed to be incredibly good, but dark.
Another Sister: It has black people in it?

Bloggy Friends

I think it's time to introduce some of my bloggosphere friends. One of the wonders of the internet age is how you can keep up with close friends from 1,200 miles away through blogs, and conversely can make friends through blogs, so that when you meet in real life you already have things to talk about. Brilliant!

  • Chris, master of Cynical Romanticism, who I have pretty much always called Topher and often call Brother (which throws people way off, and I love it). He's a sophomore at Catholic U, and is among the smartest and freakin' funniest people I've ever known. I am as proud of him as a blood sister would be. He's just getting back into the blog thing after a long absence.
  • Brittany (not Britney), is Casting Out into the Deep as a "pre-nun" with the sisters out in California (for now). I stumbled across her blog some months ago, started stalking her, and ended up sharing a room with her when I went out to the Religious Ed Congress in February. She's smart and sassy.
  • Paul of Alive and Young. Paul moved to Delaware during my senior year at the University. He's a Southern boy who makes sweet potatoes the same way my mama does (but, sorry, not as good as my Mama does!). He, too, is smart and witty. (I see a theme...)
  • Joe, the Journeyman Carpenter, who I haven't ever met, but who often leaves generous comments here. He seems to be posting to his blog more often, and I hope he continues!

All these folks comment with some frequency -- thank you!

The rest of you: jump in the game! I don't bite, I swear. ;-)

A Lack of Contrition, Is What This Is

Several of my girls in my homeroom got in fairly serious trouble (for a Catholic middle school) for having their cell phones in school and taking pictures in the bathroom (not allowed, at all). A week later, one of them took much longer on a trip to the bathroom than she should have, and when I asked her to explain herself, she give a "look how clever I am" smirk to her friends and said, "I was taking pictures, sorry."

Which is what this reminds me of:
"I was worried I wasn't going to make it... I was pinned down by sniper fire at the Burbank airport."
-Hillary Balboa, joking on Leno

It's official. Aside from not liking her politics, this woman is getting on my nerves.

Thursday, April 3, 2008

My Personal Retreat

...for four years was the Basilica of the National Shrine of the Immaculate Conception. I went there one day while I was home because, realistically, it was my last chance. I took about a million pictures and tried to suck in all the details to carry around with me for the next... however long until I see it again.

I will miss it.

The Honeymoon is Over

I've spent most of my time since February going on about how much I love the weather here. I was wearing shorts and flip flops the first week in March, and on my birthday (March 12) it was nearly 80. Perfect. Beautiful. Amazing.

Until just now, when I had my first mosquito sighting of the season.

Dang. Forgot about those, and the 50+ bites I had from the knees down at one point last summer.

My Sister is Amazing

After talking to me about the friend drama in her 4th grade class, and her fears about both drifting from her best friend and moving physically away from all her friends, she says:

"But you know, the Chinese word for 'crisis' also has the character for 'opportunity' in it. So, I guess anytime something bad happens something good happens, too."

Do you know how freakin' long it took me to learn that? She's ten!


Melissa has inspired me to create a "theophany" label, which up to this point I had intentionally avoided because the entire content of this site is supposed to be on theophanies, but this is just too much.

I am Sybil

I knew it! Twelve parents in thirty minutes! It's now ten minutes past the official end of classroom visits, and my last parent just walked out.
Which means of course, I'll be doing the same shortly. Woo!

Sybil?? I totally meant Cassandra. Why did I say Sybil??

And even Cassandra isn't a nice thing to compare myself too. She was cursed to be a prophet who always spoke truth but was never believed. Not my situation. At all.

I'm a dummy, basically.

Half Time

Alright, we're half way through classroom siege... er, visit night, and I've yet to have any visitors.  This happened last quarter though, and in the last fifteen minutes I was suddenly beset... um, I mean, graced by five or six parents.
Holding tight.

Game Face

It's classroom visitation night.   For those of you new to primary school jargon, that means parents come pick up their kids' report cards and then stop by to ask me why Oliver Overachiever has a 93 instead of a 94, or why Janie Slackslot has a 75.  They're supposed to start coming in ten minutes (5:30), but some are already prowling the halls.  I'm hunkered down behind my desk, sitting under the radar, if you will.  I sincerely love when my parents are involved with their children's education and back me up, but seeing them all at the same time wears me out.  I'm hoping the nice weather inspires them all to go to Dairy Queen instead of coming here.
At 6:30, I am out of here like greased lightening.

Wednesday, April 2, 2008

Hillary Balboa

When it comes to finishing a fight, Rocky and I have a lot in common. I never quit. I never give up.
-Hillary Clinton


Three Years Later

I don't know about you, but this still moves me to tears.

"We can be sure that our beloved Holy Father is at the window of the Father's house, blessing us."

Tuesday, April 1, 2008

Things I Wish Were April Fool's Jokes

You would not believe how many times a day I tell a student to be quiet and get one of these responses:
"I wasn't talking to anybody, I was talking to myself!"
"I wasn't talking, I was singing!"
(Having looked me in the eye, while talking to someone else) "I wasn't even talking!"
It's totally insane.