Novak (novak) wrote,

Personal: Settling In

Well, I'm still settling in to my apartment: I'm very, very, very happy about the amount of space I have, and yesterday my phone finally came on, which has established some small amount of contact to the outside world (414-931-4759), but Time Warner still hasn't even bothered to tell me anything about when I will get my internet hookup, which I hear is pretty normal for them. But after a week, now, I'm starting to get frisky. I hadn't realized how much I'd come to depend on easy email contact for some relationships and for doing my bibliographical research with the library catalogues. I've helped to reduce my usual moviegoing troupe of Mike Harris, Dan Lloyd and Professor Barnes into an incompetent puddle of chaos with my 24-hour turnaround to every proposal that they make: I should be out enjoying Kung Fu Hustle tonight, but all was lost.

Lots of the moving-in is done, although I still need to buy about three new bookcases, and so I've some dozens of bags of books still lining the walls of my different rooms. I've come to enjoy having three windows in front of me when I'm sitting on the couch, adding up to one sort of uber-window. On the sixth floor, I kind of feel that I'm some sort of cliff-dweller, looking out over Milwaukee. I got to turn off the lights the other night and enjoy a smashing midwestern thunderstorm rolling over us and out to the Lake. So, I do some reading for the doctoral exams, and then I'll get up and unpack another box, or wash things. Doing it like that seems to make it a lot less overwhelming. Yesterday was a wash, just feeling under the weather a bit, but I redeemed the time by re-reading Ender's Game for the first time. Knowing the end was the biggest difference for re-reading this one (I don't really think that it is for all books), and I think was more focused on the character of Peter than I had been before, although that's not surprising given that I'd just spent time with him when I picked up Shadow of the Giant for the first time the other week, thus completing the "Bean" quartet. In my official reading, I'm moving slowly through my first work on religion in the public sphere, a very dense piece called Religion in the Public Square: the Place of Religious Convictions in Political Debate by Robert Audi and Nicholas Wolterstorff. Much more congenial to read are the printed form of the Erasmus Lectures that I attended in 2001-2002 by Shirley Williams, now Baroness of Crosby, called God and Caesar: Personal Reflections on Politics and Religion. I think that I might be able to use a lecture or two from that one, but they are a pleasure to read, regardless. I was quite fortunate in being able to talk with her and her husband at length during the time of the lectures at Notre Dame. I've also begun to read in the direction of Jewish apocalypticism and mysticism as a background for the Prologue to the Gospel of John. Those textual connections are more tentative and speculative, of course, but I'm finding it an interesting project to start putting together that bibliography.

And so that's all that. Hope to get connected soon, but I'm going to go away for a few days, which won't help matters. My niece and goddaughter Grace turns three tomorrow and there will be festivities this weekend that aren't to be missed.
Tags: personal

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