July Ramblings

We have an inmate at Bastrop Federal Satellite Camp who was a physician's assistant when we arrived. Now he's a doctor. I'm not sure if he now believes he is a doctor, he's forgotten there's a difference, or if he just thinks we're all that gullible. His delusion/memory lapse/scam does underscore the fact that we can always reinvent ourselves, and there's no better place than prison, or any place that lacks Google, to try that. I wonder if it's too late to claim that I started 4 years at 2nd base for the New York Yankees, earned 4 Gold Gloves, hit over .300 every year, and won 2 World Series rings before retiring to become a missionary? It's not like I have ever told anyone here that I didn't do that. On second thought, maybe an HONEST re-invention would be more in keeping with my prison rehabilitation. Certainly less interesting, though.

You may know that the roots of plants will naturally grow toward water. But did you know that recent experiments have proven that they will also grow toward a recording of merely the sound of running water? This discovery is good news/bad news for plants and plant lovers. Plants are apparently smarter than we thought, but are also easily fooled.

Buddy the camp cat is back, thanks to the kind hearted officer here who has been his de facto mom since he just showed up as a kitten almost 3 years ago. His eye looks much better and he's more like his old self. He still seems to be deaf, but he is a cat. It could just be standard cat aloofness. I would hate to go through football season without him. There is no better lap warmer on a cold Saturday when watching college football on an outside TV.

In the spring of 2008, Professor Robert Jenson gave a series of lectures to Princeton undergraduates. The course framed Christian theology as a response to the Old Testament question posed here to the prophet Ezekiel: "Son of man, can these bones live?" His book A Theology Outline: Can These Bones Live? is based on these 23 lectures. Jenson's understanding of Christian theology and church history is broad and deep, but this book is not his renowned Systematic Theology. It's more a roadmap for normal people, not theologians. In the post-Christian world we live in today, is the church and it's theology a pile of dried up bones? Or does God still speak to and live in his children and the church? Jenson is not afraid to honestly and thoroughly wrestle with these questions in this great little book.

Here's a few lines from the poem "Mysteries" from Mary Oliver's book Evidence. Let me keep my distance, always, from those Who think they have the answers. Let me keep company always with those who say "Look!" and laugh in astonishment and bow their heads.