Random Friday, Juneteenth

“God Almighty has set before me two Great Objects: the suppression of the Slave Trade and the Reformation of Manners.”

– William Wilberforce

Today is not a random day, but I have random thoughts.

Who amongst us knew that the biggest investments in 2020 would be toilet paper, medical masks, and spray paint?

And, we’re not done yet.

In Portland Oregon, a statue of George Washington was wrapped in an American flag, the flag was set on fire, and then the statue was toppled.

You keep using that protest. I do not think it means what you think it means.

I woke this morning to the news that British actor, Sir Ian Holm has passed away at the age of 88.

Holm starred in two of my favorite movies. He was Bilbo Baggins in The Lord of the Rings, and Sam Mussabini in Chariots of Fire.

I recently re-watched The Lord of the Rings and one of my summer reading projects has been to re-read The Hobbit, and The Lord of the Rings.

I may find the time this weekend to re-watch Chariots of Fire. A long-time favorite.

I also need to find more time to read.

In the evenings, I have a tendency to leave myself notes for things I want to work on the following day. Sometimes that works, sometimes I can’t read my handwriting. Like the other day when it took me to well past noon to realize that what I had written was “More Lewis” meaning that I need to read more C.S. Lewis.

I was well into my second cup of coffee before I realized that I had not written “More Lefts” or “More Leaves.”

Unless today is the first time you’ve read this blog, you know that I would only write either of those phrases if I was being held captive and trying to get a coded message to my family.

Thanks to the holiday, it’s the weekend and I’m taking next week off for some family events.

Today is Juneteenth. It commemorates the day that slaves in Texas finally learned of their freedom. As of this week it is an unofficial state holiday in Virginia. That will likely change in the next session of the General Assembly.

Use today to learn something instead of re-posting that meme or argument that only reinforces what you believe, or think you believe.

Heck, use the whole weekend. One day is not enough.

Speaking of the weekend. Sunday is Father’s Day.

You know what to do.

Moving Pieces

“That’s chess!” snapped Ron. “You’ve got to make some sacrifices!”

J.K. Rowling, Harry Potter and the Sorcerer’s Stone

I have vague childhood memories of watching a movie with my parents where the Greek gods manipulated the lives of people below like chess pieces.

My memories may be faulty.

I suppose I could take the time to research the movie if I thought it was really anything more than a writing prompt for this post.

But I’d also run the risk of being entirely wrong about the movie. Then where would this post be?

I don’t believe the Greek gods are controlling our lives like that.

And I also don’t believe that our Heavenly Father is playing chess in the pearly game room.

I tend to believe that God set things in motion but that He doesn’t direct every move.

Or movie if you’ve ever seen anything out of Hollywood.

Not that He couldn’t, and not that He’s not in control. Even with all of the chaos.

Your exegesis may vary.

Neither the movie nor the chess game may be the best examples of what is going on today.

Except to say that there are a lot of moving pieces.

Not unlike a jigsaw puzzle or IKEA furniture.

Sometimes it’s hard to keep up.

I mean, as much as I don’t want to talk about current events, it looks like Atlanta is gearing up to be the next city to burn.

See what happens when you censor movies? Selznick already did that in Gone With the Wind.

Against my better judgment, I made a comment on a Facebook article about the group Lady Antebellum deciding to call themselves Lady A. Apparently, they’ve worked out an agreement with the blues singer who has performed as Lady A for years.

My only point was that I don’t buy the spin that they didn’t make the Civil War connection to the term “Antebellum” some twenty years ago. No, the term is not exclusive to the American Civil War. But, to be from the South and not know what it means?

Oh, honey…bless your hearts.

In other bizarre news, Quaker Oats has announced that they will be discontinuing the brand “Aunt Jemima” because of the historical references to racism and slavery. “Uncle Ben” can’t be far behind.

Look, I don’t know the last time we had either product in our house. For one thing, we don’t eat nearly enough pancakes.

The company can do whatever they want. This is probably the right move.

But, after 131 years, you just made the slavery connections this week?

Closer to home I’m dealing with moving pieces waiting to see when there will be news about the amusement park opening, and working with my theater company to determine when we can actually reopen.

I’ve refreshed my email at least six times whilst writing this post, hoping there would be news.

There was not.

I know that after 47 years of house arrest, we’ve gone from “We can do this,” to “I don’t think I can do this much longer.”

There’s just a lot we still don’t know and that can be stressful.

We’re all there.

We don’t know what move to make next.

That’s why I don’t play chess.

Things you should read:

The woke have no vision of the future
John Gray at UnHerd

The use and abuse of history: Removal of statues means historically rudderless America
The Washington Times

Sing for us, Patsy:

Photo by Carlos Esteves on Unsplash