ENTRY 1347 | MONDAY,
DECEMBER 9 2013
. . . he was told,
"Your mother and your brothers are standing outside, desiring
to see you." But he said to them, "My mother and my brothers
are those who hear the word of God and do it."
From St. Luke's
Gospel, chapter 8,
from today's Orthodox lectionary
See the homiletical thought below.
don't much like the word "meme," which apparently is pronounced
"mimi" (like a popular woman's nickname) rather than the
first syllable of memory with the second syllable of "me"
(mem-me) which is what I hoped was its pronounciation. It's kind of
ugly as a word and it has no cachet so far as I can see, yet it has
become part of the standard vocabulary of the Internet in recent months,
so I guess we have to get used to it.
as a communications device, I like what the word stands for or what
it means. Memes are little pictures or graphics that say something,
express a thought, that's "out there" in cyberspace these
days...something people are thinking and talking about. If you use
one, you don't have to totally own it. In a sense, putting one on
your Facebook page can mean as little as, "what do you think
of this...agree, disagree, outrageous, or right-on?" And so when
I put them on my blog, I do so because I want people to think about
those questions, but not necessarily think they represent my own thinking,
at least not precisely.
figure above is a small sampling of the 'memes' that appear
when you search "memes" in Google images.
are a lot of ugly memes in the sense of being unkind, personal attacks,
bullying, and such. In a sense, all of those "values" are
so subjective that what's a personal attack in my opinion may seem
like a mild criticism to you, or vice versa...no communication is
perfect; all of it is fraught with the danger of being misinterpreted.
So though I try to avoid using anything that seems like a personal
attack, it might not seem so to you. I think it's the responsibility
of the media, journalists (which I still consider myself to be, even
though I no longer earn a salary in the profession) to think and reflect
critically about anyone in power because, if we don't do so, they
will aggregate even more power to themselves and be tempted to take
themselves too seriously. Of course the party I favor (because it
is less accepting of the abortion of babies in the womb than the other
US party is) comes in for less criticism from me, but I do try to
be critical even of it.
now we've strayed beyond the discussion of memes, so here I'll quit...hoping
something I've said has some resonance with some readers today.
the Thursday morning coffee group at Townsend Presbyterian went for
a mid-day Christmas dinner at...a garden center. But Dobbie's is no
ordinary garden center. A Scottish-originated chain, the one in Lisburn,
nine miles from central Belfast, is the only one in all of Ireland.
It does not seem huge compared with your average Super Wal-mart, but
besides being a very diverse garden store, it has a meat market, a
grocery, a deli, and a gourmet restaurant with very good food and
excellent service. The brass band of Santa's helpers above is one
of the displays. It or each piece separately is part of the Christmas
stuff you can buy there.
I hope to go to the Christmas Marketplace at City Hall to cover a
caroling performance by the Boys Brigade of Townsend and, I believe,
some other local congregations. But I'll hold any pictures I get of
that for tomorrow's blog.
Today's Christmas fare
Above is the
Titanic Visitors Center in Belfast's Titanic Quarter, decked out for
Christmas, in a picture I snapped yesterday.