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Two young students came to our door last night. They were on a recruitment drive for the Smile Club, a sponsorship scheme of the IHC. I give of my time to Friendlink and to sitting with Graeme in church each Sunday. I didn’t feel I needed to give them five minutes to listen to their spiel. They went away happily enough when I declined.

The first reading of the Civil Union bill passed through Parliament yesterday on its first reading. Now it goes to the Select Committee for public submissions. The righteous were on the steps of Parliament to pray and declaim against the bill. This came as a shock to some steering the bill through parliament who had not come knee to knee with the ugly face of religious fanaticism before.

I think the righteous have their knickers twisted. Marriage as it widely practised in this country is not a ordinance or divine sacrament, it is a registration signed between two people on a piece of paper before witnesses. Any thing beyond that is a matter of religion not the state.

Back to a full quota of staff today, although the archivist’s household are not all well. I checked the safe door that one of the staff has problems with after she had left and made sure it was properly locked.

The latest weekly lectionary readings are posted on the Presbyterian website. I spent this evening copying them onto my palmtop for each week until August.

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At the end of yesterday’s service I had planned to give the cross/pin that I had bought for Graeme to his minder at a suitable time. His minder suggested I give it to him then and there. He fastened it in the centre of Graeme’s tie (meaning he wouldn’t have to adjust it everytime that Graeme changed clothing). Graeme gave me a grateful hug on receiving it.

What is humanity that god is mindful of them? Go out among the stars. The traveller would have to go at least 20 lightyears to discover another world where life like ours could develop. We may be alone in the known universe, yet we are special.

Quiet at the archives today. The archivist rang last night to say that she would not yet be over her flu by today. The assistant archivist is overseas, eating cake in Viennese street cafes. One of the staff from the residential college let me in the archives office using a master key. There were two of working there all day.

I caught up on projects on Endeavour in the evening. Jörg has written to me again, breaking the silence of several months. I wanted to read the description of his Old Albic language on the Constructed Languages List before I wrote to him again. I took notes out of a book from the Hewitson Library for a historic gospel that I constructed from the Jesus Seminar and other individual theologians. Now I can return it tomorrow.

Keith made a good bolognaise for tea. I look forward to future attempts.

Pentecost 4

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Town was busy yesterday as people took the chance of a fine day to get out and browse. If the weather continues like this we should be in for a mild winter.

I did some work on my webpages. Unfortunately I couldn’t send an ftp command through to twinkles, so they haven’t been uploaded yet.

Graeme has been good this week, no tears, no tantrums, and a party on Saturday to celebrate turning 54. The preacher based his sermon on Psalm 8. The heavens declare the handiwork of god, and even the blackholes join in by singing bass. What is the human child that god should care for her? The likeness of the matrix/word incarnate as a human being living among us!

Zargoff arrived to take us out to Sanctuary overlooking Blueskin Bay just before midday. Dryad was putting on a function for midwinter. Zargoff was right on time. Somehow telling Joe to be ready by eleven thirty escaped my notice. Ooops! A potluck meal, we took some pizzas we bought from the supermarket on Friday with us. There was a glorious spread of savories as more people continued to arrive. I tried a hookah that one person brought with him, inhaling the sweet raspberry flavoured smoke, the first time I have ever attempted to smoke anything. Very smooth, nowhere near as unpleasant an experience as it could have been.

We walked over the section. There were still a number of eucalypti growing there. I helped plant them last year. It was a delight to see that so many had survived. My kowhai is still growing in their front lawn. A dwarf plant, it is beginning to spread out rather than grow any further. The section still has a problem with gorse and broom, I am confident that dryad and Zargoff will deal with that in the next few years as resources come available.

The final event of the evening started as a discussion with a Muslim about comparative religion. As two Daoists and a critical rationalist joined in the conversation quickly turned on the nature of god, especially the existence of that esteemed gentleman. For the most part I sat back and let the conversation take its course, even though much of the conversation was directed to include me in it. There was no argument that I wanted to put up that would make any difference to either position. The company turned the worship and preaching of the earlier part of the day on its head.

Dryad brought us home as darkness fell. I did not go Majellan, instead the day took another course.

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Memorial Quote: If you were to tear up the final chapter of a book, would the story go on forever?

I guess it depends on the book. Robert Jordan can sure make me feel like….

Shamelessly stolen from Sluggy Freelance. ‘Nuff zed!

I went into town this morning to see if I could buy a brooch that I could give to Graeme tomorrow. I visited three ‘christian’ shops with varying degrees of success. Moran Books (Catholic) no longer had a supplier, they were burnt out (go Satan!); OC Books (Otago Church Books) no luck; bought something suitable from Manna Books (Evangelical). Maybe a jeweller would have been a better bet.

The secondhand bookshop, Rebound, gestating in OC Books seems to be more successful than its host. I found two books worth taking away: a Fritz Leiber Fafhrd and the Grey Mouser and the first book in William Horwood’s Tales of the Willows sequels. Not disappointing.

I also think there may be a new bookshop in the Gardens Mall where Gardenía previously was. At least the other week when I walked past there were books stored in there.

I also found a cheap copy of Sailing to Sarantium at Whitcoulls in the Meridian Mall. I think I will have to go back there as I see they also have the latest Maramataka calendar for sale there. It follows the indigenous year from the Maori new year at the first rising of Matariki, the Pleiades, after midwinter until the end of June 2005.

Dryad rang in the evening to invite us to a midwinter lunch at Sanctuary tomorrow. I arranged for the whole flat to go, which works out nicely. By the sound of things dryad wants me to have a chin-wag with a Muslim friend about comparative religions, so that could prove to be interesting.

The rest of the day I have spent working on translations for Brithenig, and browsing the Conculture list at Yahoo to catch up on what’s going on in Ill Bethisad. Most interesting was the discussion whether Ill Bethisad should move from Conculture to its own list. If that happens I should probably consider becoming more directly active in that group. I updated some information on Ill Bethisad Wiki, and wondered if I should do some background research into Cambrian Guyana. (The reader should not be expected to understand anything about what I have just written.)

Having seen Southern Dave‘s ID photo from the Portrait Illustration Maker, I have decided that removing my attempt from my livejournal account was the right idea.

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The dishes were done last night, and the bench cleaned down; music plays from the other end of the house; and now I have two people visiting me while I’m sitting in front of a computer trying to think (not always helpful). Yes, sure sign that there is a full quota of people living in the house – plus an equal quota of cats in number, if not in weight.

The jobs broker from WINZ rang today and confirmed that she is willing to stretch the rules a little and support me in paid work at the archives until the end of the working year (22 December). The archivist left early today as she was feeling unwell, and feared that she was ending the week with the same flu that the assistant archivist started the week with. I feared that I might be taking it home with me too. I’ve seen no symptons of it so far.

I was rang by a marketer tonight doing a poll about my internet provider. I decided to take it from the context of the network rather than my individual computer and said Ihug. Sadly the Ihug account is Joe’s and I don’t deal with it, or know must of the details. Most of my answers were in that case irrelevant, or very vague. Despite what I said to the marketer I really don’t have any opinions, or complaints, about the quality of their service, or protection against spammers, that Ihug provides. It was amusing answering questions about email, as my account is at Griffler Enterprises.

I have begun looking at a translation of the Crevethic creed from Ill Bethisad into Brithenig. I am considering the possibility of a survival of the -ion ending as a plural marker for a small group of nouns derived from Vulgar Latin sources.

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A walk in the rain. I declined the offer of an umbrella as I left the house which meant the charm didn’t work – it rained. That could just as well mean that the charm worked according to natural order: carry umbrella, it doesn’t rain; carry no umbrella, it does rain. It was a front so it fell heavily. At times I was nearly walking blind into the rain.

I forgot to buy a cruciform brooch for Graeme to give him as a birthday present on Sunday. I won’t get into town tomorrow, so I will have to try and go in on Saturday.

Lots of creamy potatoes for tea at the moment which I will have to work off in future visits to the gym.

Harry rang this evening to invite us around to a games night. I had made the assumption that we could bring Keith with us. This proved to be wrong. Harry knows Joe and myself and is happy to have us over for an evening; he has met Keith once and does not know him personally. I am not in a position to invite him to come with us. After a couple of phone calls Harry and I were left in an uncomfortable position. I decided that I would stay warm and dry at home out of the rain.

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The weather is less cold today. My nose wasn’t continually producing mucus when I came home in the cold night air. Being a maritime nation New Zealand is dependent on the seas to warm again after the shortest days before the seasonal warmth begins again. This will not happen until the end of July. Despite this, the winter remains mild.

The pile of boxes have mostly disappeared from the living room. It made me nostalgic about the last time we moved boxes and things around. That was when Joe and I swapped rooms around, so it wasn’t all that long ago. There’s still things to be sorted away in the bathroom/laundry, as well as the boxes and leftovers in the shed could do with a tidy-up.

Jane is returned to the archives. A posting in the Women in the Air Force (WAF) to Aden when she was younger has left her with a permanent condition of Aden Gut. This means she is susceptible to any stomach bug out there, and they hit her hard.

Ham and cheese sandwich for lunch: the hot mustard Keith brought with him is strongly flavoured and correctly titled.

No meetings tonight.

Only the latest Amazing Spiderman in at Bag End. Unfortunately I visit the comic shop straight after the ATM machine. This means I have nothing to give them except yuppie food vouchures a.k.a. $20 bills. At the end of the day Michael prefers smaller notes. I told him I’m quite happy with schrapnel, even 5c coins. So in my change he gave me $2 in very little coins. I know where my wallet is – it weighs a bit now. Fortunately I can feed the schrapnel into the vending machine in the Hewitson Wing at Knox College.

The last phone bill has come. I have sent an email to his holiness Isidore the First notifying him on how much he has to pay. I expect that this will mark the end of any communication that I will have with him.

A couple of documentaries on tv tonight. The interesting one talked about how we have only twelve years left before all the current antibiotics will become redundant in the face of an ever evolving onslaught of bacteria.

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