Novak (novak) wrote,

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Personal: Nathanial's Going Down from Oxford

Been having a long, rambling talk via computer with Nathaniel Hannan all [England] night as he packs to go down from Oxford. I'm looking back at an old post of his on his Live Journal to look at the pictures of his view as the sun comes up over the towers. A funny post of ours on that day is included, too. Maybe I'll post some of this, edited, later on....

Update 2:06am

NovakFreek: Farewell and safe travel!
Auto response from Aristotle2002: packing up
Aristotle2002: yo
Aristotle2002: thank you
Aristotle2002: let me give you a quick roundup of my schedule over the next two months
NovakFreek: Man, I would hate "going down..."
Aristotle2002: better to go down than to be sent down or rusticated
Aristotle2002: but yes, I will miss Tom Tower outside of my window and everything that goes with it
NovakFreek: Hold on: phone call from my brother.
Aristotle2002: July 2-7: Retrieving car from Texas
Auto response from NovakFreek: I am on the phone right now, and you know me: yack yack yack. I love yaks.
Aristotle2002: July 7-15: Indiana
Aristotle2002: July 16-18: Louisville, KY
Aristotle2002: July 19-22: Atlanta, GA
Aristotle2002: July 23-27: Miami and Key West, FL
Aristotle2002: July 28-Aug 2: Washington, DC
Aristotle2002: Aug 2-6: Indiana
Aristotle2002: Aug 7-mid-august: Minnesota
Aristotle2002: how would you feel, then, about that period in August?
NovakFreek: Huh. That is a hectic time! By all mean, stop by sometime there, probably on your way back. I have pt.2 of my surgery on Aug. 6th. I'll be in the hospital 3-5 days and then sticking close to the apartment probably.

More immediately, my sister gave birth to a girl 30 minutes ago....
Aristotle2002: holy shit, congratulations!
Aristotle2002: on the second part more than the first
NovakFreek: Yay!
Aristotle2002: I assume that "yay" includes the sentiment that mother and child are doing fine?
NovakFreek: He didn't say. My brother-in-law's father's English is sketchy.
NovakFreek: (That's who answered the phone at my sister's place--he's probably watching Grace)
Aristotle2002: I don't think I knew that she was due
Aristotle2002: or even pregnant
NovakFreek: Oh, yeah: I mentioned it in a recent entry or two, but you've been quite busy.
Aristotle2002: hmm, indeed
Aristotle2002: there have been ALL KINDS of vices to indulge
NovakFreek: lol How so? And when do you get your results?
Aristotle2002: carousing with friends whom one will not see for a long time automatically includes some vices
Aristotle2002: I think the results are posted on July 7
Aristotle2002: I will get a letter in the mail shortly thereafter
Aristotle2002: I think that I shall also have a friend go down to exam schools and check the lists for me
Aristotle2002: both the classes and the order of names within the classes are posted for all to see
Aristotle2002: it's pretty hard-core
NovakFreek: Ah, literally posted, are they? Huh.
NovakFreek: Names of failures, too?
Aristotle2002: yup.
NovakFreek: Hard-core.
Aristotle2002: hey man, it's the business of the entire guild to know.
NovakFreek: True, I guess.
NovakFreek: Harsh, but true.
Aristotle2002: all the same, I bought my MA gown today
NovakFreek: Are they published in the Times?
NovakFreek: :-) Good for you!
Aristotle2002: lol, not quite
Aristotle2002: yes indeed
Aristotle2002: yay
Aristotle2002: I look quite dignified
NovakFreek: Is it a good one?
NovakFreek: I quite liked my ND one, although the cheap version that I got for St. Joe formal occasions was not so compelling.
Aristotle2002: the underlying gown has more details than a standard american MA gown, but the hood is quite similar, although shorter and redder
NovakFreek: Yay Theology!
Aristotle2002: it's open at the front and worn over a tux
NovakFreek: Ah, that's different.
Aristotle2002: actually, that's the color for all humanities subjects here
NovakFreek: Really? Crimson is unique to Theology in the U.S..
Aristotle2002: the highest and oldest of the sciences...
NovakFreek: I have my crimson ND school tassel hanging here in front of me: my only relic.
Aristotle2002: what happened to the gown?
NovakFreek: I had to check out the Marquette robes before accepting their offer: a very subdued, mostly-black. Could be more interesting, but could be much more awful. I wouldn't go to a school that had a mortar-board: only a Christian Humanist cap for me!
Aristotle2002: lol
Aristotle2002: Oxford has a mortarboard you know
NovakFreek: Stole it for a day because my family wouldn't come to my graduation as my brother was getting his B.S. the same day in Champaign and I'd already had a graduation. Went down, took photos with him and then mailed it back to the rental company.
NovakFreek: Mortarboard?!
NovakFreek: That's horrific.
Aristotle2002: it's original
NovakFreek: They might as well give you a pinwheel skullcap.
Aristotle2002: at least the tassel is black and fixed rather than cheesy
NovakFreek: I can accept and agree with that.

I'd love to be in a school like Oxford/Hogwarts where you actually where the gowns. Man, the world could use some pageantry.
Aristotle2002: we wear them all the time
Aristotle2002: it's insane
Aristotle2002: lecturers are supposed to wear academic dress to lecture
Aristotle2002: although not as many do any more
Aristotle2002: technically that can get them fined by the proctors
NovakFreek: Perfect. Exactly what we need. I proposed it for St. Joe during another bout of the dress code wars: let the little bastards where whatever the hell they want, but they have to wear gowns over it--seniors can have theirs unzipped.
Aristotle2002: I love it
Aristotle2002: I hope you included scarves
Aristotle2002: I will wear my college scarf until the day I die
NovakFreek: You actually do have college scarves? I didn't know!
Aristotle2002: yup, I will dig up a picture and email it to you
Aristotle2002: it should be in your inbox momentarily
NovakFreek: Excellent. Saves me the "what does it look like" question. Yeah, I'd be damned proud of that. I'd where an ND one, if we had it. In fact, I did have a "Notre Dame" scarf, but I left it at Fleming's over a year ago. I wonder where it is--I just moved him and didn't notice it. But an "official" one would be tasty.
NovakFreek: So do you have any sense of what's what and how to gauge what you might have done?
Aristotle2002: If that question is directed toward my exam results, I am reasonably certain that I have either a 2.1 or a first, both of which would be acceptable for my goals
NovakFreek: Downloading... 's big!...

Aristotle2002: yeah, 500k
Aristotle2002: I'm surprised we don't have a Notre Dame scarf, frankly
Aristotle2002: these scarves are college-specific, of course, not university-wide
NovakFreek: Ah... gorgeous! I was a bit thrown for a second: it fills my screen; all I was getting was Whoopi and Patrick at first--had to scroll right....
NovakFreek: Damn! That's just elegant!
Aristotle2002: I like it lots :-)
NovakFreek: I know, I know, but all we have are universities....
NovakFreek: I think a word spoken in the right quarters--which you are far closer to than I--would result in a Notre Dame scarf.
Aristotle2002: with all of the fabulously gay men we have here, could college scarves be anything less than elegant?
NovakFreek: :-)
NovakFreek: I was part of a large gay dinner club in my days at ND--the only straight guy there, in fact--so it's hardly a European thing....
Aristotle2002: lol, I love it
NovakFreek: Every Wednesday nights in the old Oak Room before they erased that from South Dining Hall: all-you-can-eat spaghetti and a few hours of fabulous conversation with grad students who knew lots more than I did.
Aristotle2002: aha, so you DO know why I spend so many hours and pints at the Eagle and Child.
NovakFreek: What does it say around the crest? "Blackfriars ___?" College?

But of course.
Aristotle2002: Blackfriars Oxford
NovakFreek: Whoopi looks amazing, by the way. Patrick, I can tell...
Aristotle2002: with the Dominican shield between those words
NovakFreek: Ah. Got it.
NovakFreek: Ah, that's the Dominican shield. That I didn't know. Hadn't seen that one, I guess.
NovakFreek: I love even having the Jesuit crest on t-shirts here: I feel part of a 500-year-old gang.
Aristotle2002: you are.
Aristotle2002: but I've got you beat here. ;-)
NovakFreek: Sure 'nuf. Still, you haven't joined, per se, so I'm not going to be too upstaged yet....
Aristotle2002: indeed
Aristotle2002: yet
NovakFreek: Yet? They been talking to you?
Aristotle2002: I was explicitly invited to join the novitiate by the vice-regent, backed up by general approbation (this was in public at a gathering in Blackfriars)
NovakFreek: Ah... Acclamation! That's old-school! Still they did give you a choice.... Not so old-school....
Aristotle2002: there was no bishop around
Aristotle2002: otherwise, you never know
NovakFreek: And then for bishops, too....
Aristotle2002: lol, indeed
Aristotle2002: poor St. Augustine...
NovakFreek: Hmm... Since it's the feast of Irenaeus, she should call the baby Irene...
Aristotle2002: I have a good friend in the Dominicans called Irenaeus


NovakFreek: Heh. I had actually started thinking about posting this conversation, it was so cool, until we got to this stuff....
Aristotle2002: that, my friend, is what selective posting is for
NovakFreek: Oh, yeah....
NovakFreek: Being lazy, I guess. Thought I'd just "Select All" and "Copy"....
Aristotle2002: I am quite well aware that "lazy" and "graduate student" go together
NovakFreek: Should I be letting you pack, by the way?
Aristotle2002: no, I'm going to stay up all night anyway.
NovakFreek: Urg... And it continues to professorship. I pointed out the similarity to the last-minute running-around to finish a conference paper our senior NT scholar was engaged in last week....
Aristotle2002: lol
Aristotle2002: yup
NovakFreek: Sleeping on the flight over?
Aristotle2002: yes
Aristotle2002: and at home
Aristotle2002: and on the looooong train ride down to TX
NovakFreek: (scrolls back up to schedule...)
Aristotle2002: I depart for TX on the 30th and get there on the 1st
NovakFreek: Ah. Is that a BMW you bought online or somesuch?
Aristotle2002: yup.
Aristotle2002: 1997 BMW 528
NovakFreek: Why so long to get back?
Aristotle2002: I have a lot of friends in Texas
Aristotle2002: might as well see them
NovakFreek: Ah. Good plan.
NovakFreek: So. Still just sitting here by the phone, waiting for a baby call. Can't go get something to eat: guess I'll have to microwave something. Are you going to have to ship some things home?
Aristotle2002: fortunately not; my sisters took lots with them, and I have two checked bags, a carry-on, and my computer bag
NovakFreek: Ah, yeah for sisters/pack siblings! Is Greer named for Greer Garson?
Aristotle2002: actually, I have no idea why Mom chose that name.
Aristotle2002: I've been trying to figure it out for years.
Aristotle2002: Greer doesn't know why either.
NovakFreek: Hm.
Aristotle2002: Mom isn't talking.
NovakFreek: Hm again. Sounds like a story that must remain untold?
Aristotle2002: we shall see in a few decades
NovakFreek: lol Why a few decades?
Aristotle2002: I figure that by the time Mom is 60, she won't care to keep whatever it is a secret any more
NovakFreek: Got it.
NovakFreek: Maybe it is just Greer Garson and she's embarrassed about picking an actress' name?
Aristotle2002: When you name your children after past Notre Dame presidents, I don't think that embarrassment comes to pass very easily.
NovakFreek: Really? Who?
Aristotle2002: lots.
Aristotle2002: Cavanaugh.
Aristotle2002: Theodora Sorin.
Aristotle2002: (two presidents in that last one)
NovakFreek: Waitasec: list family names please.
Aristotle2002: Nathaniel Lloyd Hannan
Aristotle2002: Darragh Maeve Mee-Sook Hannan.
Aristotle2002: Greer Erin Hannan
Aristotle2002: Cavanaugh James Hannan
Aristotle2002: Theodora Sorin Hannan


NovakFreek: What about your names?
Aristotle2002: my own? My Father originally wanted to name me after one of Isaiah's sons, a name that meant "quick spoil, easy plunder," but Mom wasn't having any of that.
Aristotle2002: Then he wanted Bartholomeus, but Mom didn't want to have a kid called "Bart."
Aristotle2002: so they settled on the Hebraic version of Bartholomeus and added a bit of our Welsh heritage in the middle
NovakFreek: My grandfather Sweeney was Bartholomew: my grandmother made him change it to Bernard.
Aristotle2002: lol
Aristotle2002: hilarious
Aristotle2002: why?
NovakFreek: Huh. Interesting.

Apparently 'cause she had far too much power. I gather she just hated the name. As everyone called him "Barney"/"Bernie," it worked. But still, if there's ever been a story of an outrageously pushy Irish woman ("Maeve" doesn't bode well, there), that's it. I just can't imagine having the gall to tell someone to change their first name....
Aristotle2002: our "Maeve" is imported from Korea, of course
NovakFreek: I know, I know, but still, names have power....
NovakFreek: Nature and nurture.... One of my best friends in college was an (ethnically-Korean) Norwegian American.

NovakFreek: Stepping away for a few moments.

NovakFreek: Gonna make some food now....
Aristotle2002: cool
NovakFreek: What is it? 4am there?
Aristotle2002: yup
Aristotle2002: now I am in a somewhat panicked fashion trying to find my passport...I think I know where it is
NovakFreek: A Very Important Item: cf. my recent entry about going to Canadia....
Aristotle2002: My search just got more interesting. It wasn't where I thought it was
NovakFreek: Oh. Not cool. How's the heart?
Aristotle2002: beating rather quickly.
NovakFreek: I'd gladly lend you mine....
Aristotle2002: While I could probably pass for you, I doubt it would get here in time.
NovakFreek: Take the next boat.
Aristotle2002: this is so freaking ironic
Aristotle2002: heart attack averted
Aristotle2002: my passport was in an old box of Lucky Strikes cigarettes
Aristotle2002: how random is that?
NovakFreek: Damned random. Slightly less random than your looking there.
NovakFreek: Sorry. Eating.
Aristotle2002: lol, I had basically searched everything else already.
Aristotle2002: yay, the sun is up!
Aristotle2002: Velvet Underground is so cool
Auto response from NovakFreek: I am online but may be away from AOL right now.
NovakFreek: Yay for Sun!
Aristotle2002: I am tempted to start singing Beatles songs
NovakFreek: Naturally. As I was tempted to type them. When do you leave?
Aristotle2002: I'll probably hop on the bus in about three and a half to five hours
Aristotle2002: my flight leaves at 12:45
NovakFreek: What is it: two hours to the airport?
Aristotle2002: more like 45 minutes
Aristotle2002: Heathrow is well outside central London
Aristotle2002: it is 100 mins. to central London, and much of that is city traffic
Aristotle2002: my traveling tends to follow Murphy's Law pretty closely, so I want to leave much more than enough time
NovakFreek: Huh. I knew it was fairly close, but I thought travel times were a bit slower than that. I went Heathrow to Oxford, but it's been long enough that I can't remember the details.
Aristotle2002: remind me when you visited?
NovakFreek: Um... April of '99.
NovakFreek: I was actually in Oxford for Easter.
Aristotle2002: oh, so not terribly long
Aristotle2002: which college's services did you attend?
NovakFreek: I was at the little St. Mary's by the Martyrs' Memorial, if I have the names right.
Aristotle2002: ah yes
Aristotle2002: St. Mary Magdalen
Aristotle2002: evangelical anglican parish now
NovakFreek: Yeah. Our guide put us there mistakenly, having thought it was Catholic. He'd not read the whole entry in this book, "The center of Catholicism in Oxford ... in the 13th century."
Aristotle2002: lol
NovakFreek: I didn't receive and I think annoyed some of the locals.
Aristotle2002: although to be fair I think that Blackfriars was more likely the center of Catholicism here in the 13th century ;-)
NovakFreek: :-)
Aristotle2002: I found out a little while ago that the tutorial system was invented by the Dominicans
NovakFreek: Really? I'm not surprised. How'd you find that out?
Aristotle2002: first from Br. Madhu Leon Kuriakos Pereira, OP, and then confirmed by a few members of the faculty of theology
NovakFreek: Uh-oh. (nervous shudder) An ad for the new King Arthur was just on the TV. I was watching the original Terminator as I ate....
Aristotle2002: sigh
Aristotle2002: it will be monstrous
Aristotle2002: just as Troy no doubt is
NovakFreek: Romanized and de-Christianized. Just like much of the Renaissance imperative ended up....
Aristotle2002: lol
NovakFreek: So are you getting real sunlight on the towers today?
Aristotle2002: it is incredibly beautiful from where I'm sitting
Aristotle2002: Tom Tower and All Souls silhouetted against the lightening sky
NovakFreek: Ah. What is the date of those pics in your journal, roughly? Remember?
Aristotle2002: which pics?
NovakFreek: The view...
Aristotle2002: hmm...probably would have been January or February-ish
Aristotle2002: immediately following my purchase of the digital camera
Auto response from NovakFreek: I am on the phone right now, and you know me: yack yack yack. I love yaks.
NovakFreek: Haley Jennifer has arrived.
Aristotle2002: yay!
Aristotle2002: what inspired the names?
NovakFreek: I have no idea where Haley came from: probably just the sound. Jennifer is Jim's Mom's "American" name.
Aristotle2002: gotcha
NovakFreek: So what is it? 5 or 6 there?
Aristotle2002: 6
NovakFreek: Seven hours. I just poured myself a glass of Sprite.
NovakFreek: In a cereal bowl. What the hell?! I really didn't get enough sleep last night....
Aristotle2002: ???
NovakFreek: Really and for true. Just washed the bowl.
NovakFreek: I loved the sudden addition of the Oxford seal the other day to your Journal as you finished exams, by the way. I don't know if you'd used it earlier, but it seemed symbolic and celebratory.
Aristotle2002: You hit it right on the head.
Aristotle2002: That is precisely what I meant it to mean.
Aristotle2002: Previously I was just a member of the university through a college; now I am both a member of a college and a master of the guild
NovakFreek: That's what an M.A. means? You're a "master of the guild?"
Aristotle2002: yup.
Aristotle2002: Masters in any guild are allowed to practice without supervision.
Aristotle2002: ergo, when you were received into MA status, you were allowed to teach students of your own.
NovakFreek: Hmmm. Didn't stop my superintendent from telling this Master that he was promoting Satanism, Nazism, and opposition to Bishop D'Arcy.....
Aristotle2002: lol
Aristotle2002: you must tell me this story
NovakFreek: Go to ...
NovakFreek: Is Greer going to Oxford?
NovakFreek: Oh, duh: she meant she was coming to visit....
NovakFreek: Looking for your pics and found an old response....
Aristotle2002: actually, Greer wants to copy me and come to Oxford too
Aristotle2002: where exactly am I finding this story on your site?
NovakFreek: Who wouldn't? Hell, I thought about suspending studies and doing a one-year M.A. in Jewish Studies there....
NovakFreek: Okay, now on the index page there, click the "Mike" link.
NovakFreek: Got it?
Aristotle2002: yup
Aristotle2002: theological debate with your bish during confirmation?
NovakFreek: That page provoked the entire thing: that point and the Satanism and Nazism was found in the picture.
Aristotle2002: aha!
Aristotle2002: gotcha
NovakFreek: Unfathomable. The Superintendent looked at this, which had been casually linked on the SJ page for everyone involved in the Newspaper, which I advised. She said I was unfit to teach. I pointed out that the Nazi hat was green with gold trim.
Aristotle2002: now...which superintendent exactly was this? St. Joe diocesan super?
NovakFreek: Diocesan. So the education nun came after me, too.

Finally found the pics! Looking out your window now and sighing....
Aristotle2002: you've got to love it. Both.
NovakFreek: Naturally, of course, the kid wearing my father's U.S. Army dress cap and making the I'm cool/Texas Longhorns/secret Satan symbol was Pat Bayliss, who you might have met at ND--the kid with the biggest Marian devotion in the school....
Aristotle2002: it's possible.
Aristotle2002: the only person who really looks familiar to me besides you is on the left, and I thought his name is Jim
NovakFreek: David Powers, son of Prof. Powers of the PLS program....
Aristotle2002: hmm, then I do know him after all, although I know him with longer hair
NovakFreek: So I went over their heads and just went straight to Bishop D'Arcy and he flipped out. Right in front of Education Nun who looked most distraught at having realized that she was an idiot for going along with the nonsense.
Aristotle2002: Thank God


NovakFreek: I like the Vatican flag: I've looked for one of those....
NovakFreek: Never found one of full size.
Aristotle2002: I picked mine up on ebay
NovakFreek: Heh. Just the thing.
Aristotle2002: in my DC apartment it will be in the middle of the english and scottish flags
NovakFreek: Naturally, me Laird.
Aristotle2002: Precisely.
NovakFreek: Never read Brideshead Revisited....
Aristotle2002: You have got to be kidding me.
Aristotle2002: It should be required.
NovakFreek: Sorry, no. That worth it?
Aristotle2002: Only if you want to understand Waugh on the nature of well-ordered human passions
Aristotle2002: Quite intriguing given his habits before his conversion
NovakFreek: I don't know anything about Waugh, really. Famed English Literary Convert to Catholicism type?
Aristotle2002: Yes.
Aristotle2002: Previously an atheist flaming bisexual, subsequently one of the great Catholic writers of the modern age
NovakFreek: I just picked up my first can-I-concentrate-hard-enough post-surgery academic book today: thought I'd go lighter with history, or well, historiography: Christianity and European Culture: Selections from the Work of Christopher Dawson. I think he's of that era and milleu.
Aristotle2002: hmm, interesting.
Aristotle2002: yup.
NovakFreek: So good for me to continue with my lighter, non-theological-but-still-worthwhile recovery reading.
NovakFreek: ?
Aristotle2002: yeah, I'd say it'd be ideal
NovakFreek: Hm. Off the library I shall go tomorrow, on your recommendation.
Aristotle2002: Did you see a movie called "Bright Young Things?"
NovakFreek: No. Think I've heard of it....
NovakFreek: My English literary movie was watching I Capture the Castle last night.
Aristotle2002: aha
Aristotle2002: well, bright young things is a rather good adaptation of Waugh's Vile Bodies
NovakFreek: Which I admit I've also never read....
Aristotle2002: and I just got scared half to death
Aristotle2002: I was stripping my bed down and an incredibly huge spider crawled out of a blanket
NovakFreek: AHHHHHHH!!!!!!!
Aristotle2002: I am now quite happy that I did not sleep last night
Aristotle2002: and I wonder how long it has been making a home there
NovakFreek: Hell, yeah!
NovakFreek: [massive shudder]
Aristotle2002: I have very nasty stories about spiders
NovakFreek: Hmm. Just reading a bit about Bright Young Things DVD....
NovakFreek: I read this bit at the end of the conversation saved on the page with the pictures:

NovakFreek: Got some follow-up to the "abandonment of the Son" stuff that I want to try on you that I thought of yesterday, but I'll have to wait on that.
Aristotle2002: oh goodie
Aristotle2002: whenever you get to it
NovakFreek: Sure enough. Peace.

and now have no idea what I was talking about....
Aristotle2002: so it goes when you don't write things down
NovakFreek: Or lose lots of blood....
Aristotle2002: that too
Aristotle2002: still doing that?
NovakFreek: No, no, but I can still feel what the doctor talked about about me not being able to do academic work for a while after the surgery: low concentration, even for ADD-Boy, fuzzy thinking, losing words for a moment or three....
Aristotle2002: hmm
NovakFreek: I think we actually talked about this "abandonment of the Son" stuff, though....
Aristotle2002: I think I sent you an essay I'd done
Aristotle2002: and I think there might have been an IM convo too
NovakFreek: The latter, I think.
NovakFreek: I'm just trying to remember what my idea was....
NovakFreek: :-)
Aristotle2002: lol
Aristotle2002: it's not immediately coming to me
Aristotle2002: if we mentioned it
NovakFreek: I think it had to do with a reciprocal "abandonment of the Father" and "abandonment of the Spirit"--that any "disruption" at any level would have to be a pan-trinitarian event and not simply limitable to the Son or to his humanity.
Aristotle2002: yeah, that sounds kinda familiar.
NovakFreek: Yeah, I think that that was it. I noticed that no one seemed to write from the "perspective" of the other two, really, in the event. Maybe a bit for the Father, particularly from an Anselmian satisfaction point of view, but nothing for the Spirit.
Aristotle2002: yup, definitely true.
NovakFreek: Gonna grab some breakfast? How's the packing?
Aristotle2002: packing is all but done
Aristotle2002: computer, a few clothes left
NovakFreek: Ah. And the food? No "dining in hall" or somesuch one last time?
Aristotle2002: basically did that a couple of weeks ago
Aristotle2002: breakfast will be whatever I catch at the airport
Aristotle2002: it's rare I eat before late morning
NovakFreek: Ah. Yeah, I'm more like that. Very light at breakfast. Cereal or pastry or fruit. I like to have a cooked breakfast for supper: scrambled eggs, bacon, toast, pancakes, yum! Gotta a 24-hour place now three and a half blocks from here that will let me indulge that....
Aristotle2002: I hope that you had a full english breakfast whilst you were here?
NovakFreek: Hmmm. No, I don't think so. I was either in a hotel on the run, or at my friends Peter and Lia's, and she's from Athens and so is her cooking. I had the "full Irish breakfast" many times though, to the point where we begged for just juice and toast from our later host families, wondering why everyone in Ireland wasn't dead, and not realizing that every host family was giving us "the works."
NovakFreek: Same thing?
Aristotle2002: it's quite close
Aristotle2002: blood pudding?
NovakFreek: Is that the grain/bits of bread fried in pig's blood? Had that.
Aristotle2002: yes.
NovakFreek: Odd to have a grainy texture, but otherwise just kind of meat or bacon-y tasting. Yummy.
Aristotle2002: yup.
Aristotle2002: and very good for you.
NovakFreek: The 10 year-old boy my first day in Ireland thought he was going to freak me with that one: "Do you know what you're eating"
Mom: "Padraig, be quiet!"
NovakFreek: Very good for you?
Aristotle2002: lol
NovakFreek: The word "pudding" throws me.
Aristotle2002: "pudding" is used for so many more things
NovakFreek: Hey I just saw Shanghai Knights (not nearly as good as Shanghai Noon--less cultural farce and more bad jokes and "startling historical ironies!") and heard about--as well as just reading the same thing in one of my British edition Harry Potter books--"spotted dick." What is that?
Aristotle2002: dessert.
NovakFreek: I gathered. What kind, specifically?
Aristotle2002: sort of a cakey thing.
Aristotle2002: And it does have spots.
NovakFreek: Hm. Like the "spots" or streaks you'd have in an angelfood cake?
Aristotle2002: eh, not really. smaller, more concentrated.
NovakFreek: Okay....
NovakFreek: Wow... we've been talking for six hours....
Aristotle2002: I've had it about once, and you should have seen the expression on my face when it was announced.
NovakFreek: You've got to be exhausted.
Aristotle2002: getting there :-)
NovakFreek: Yeah, the line from Shanghai Knights was something like, "You think everyone's being gracious and kind and offering you whatever you'd like and this guy goes and asks you if you've got the clap...."
NovakFreek: Careful falling asleep on the bus.... Don't want to miss the airport....
NovakFreek: :-)
Aristotle2002: lol
Aristotle2002: I can't miss it
NovakFreek: Good! Looking forward to seeing you!
Aristotle2002: indeed
NovakFreek: Too bad you can't hit Summerfest, though: America's biggest rock festival is a real treat to have in walking distance.
Aristotle2002: remind me what exactly the dates are?
NovakFreek: Although, I haven't taken much advantage of it this year....
NovakFreek: June 24-July 4.
Aristotle2002: hmm, yup I'm sol.
NovakFreek: Eh, I haven't been as excited about this year's lineup as I was about last year's, anyway.
Aristotle2002: oh well
NovakFreek: Eh. Prince put on a fabulous show. And I might go Wednesday for a more-or-less 80s super-lineup. Playing the stages at 10pm are: Pat Benetar, Styx, The Fixx, Kool and the Gang, Tesla, Loverboy and gin Blossoms.
Aristotle2002: wow
Aristotle2002: that's not such a bad lineup after all!
NovakFreek: Yeah, it'd be fun wandering from stage to stage for those few hours, but I'd probably want to hear Styx and KatG the most....
Aristotle2002: yup
NovakFreek: I was fascinated by Kilroy Was Here my freshman year of high school....
Aristotle2002: people still paint that all over the place over here
Aristotle2002: or are we talking about a band?
NovakFreek: It was a concept album/rock opera title. I can't remember the original derivation of the saying they paint there. It was a pretty blatant anti-Moral Majority/Religious Right epic saga of rock rebellion against totalitarian social repression. Very controversial, particularly to the high school mind....
Aristotle2002: aha
Aristotle2002: well, I should probably bust a move
NovakFreek: Time to go? Or rather, pack the computer?
Aristotle2002: the latter
NovakFreek: Actually just copied and started editing this conversation for random publication. :-)
Aristotle2002: lol
Aristotle2002: cool
NovakFreek: All the parts of a delicate nature of course will remain unprinted, but some of the rest of this I thought was fun.
Aristotle2002: sure thing
NovakFreek: And Haley Jennifer might enjoy reading it one day....
Aristotle2002: yay
Aristotle2002: yay for Haley Jennifer
Aristotle2002: and your sister
NovakFreek: Anyway, we'll see one another online and then in August actually meet for the first time since, what, 2002?
Aristotle2002: pretty much, yeah!
NovakFreek: Was it that night in the K of C 'til 3 or no, that was your junior year....
Aristotle2002: I think last time I saw you was one of Solomon's conferences
NovakFreek: No, I don't know Solomon--oh, one of the Ethics and Culture conferences! Yeah...
Aristotle2002: yup
NovakFreek: I'm debating some three proposals for the next one.
NovakFreek: It's right up the Freek alley....
Aristotle2002: submit them all and see what gets accepted
NovakFreek: Kinda the plan, I think. But I'm going to try to get all the guys there: Arts and the post-Christian culture.
Aristotle2002: interesting
NovakFreek: Alright, anyway, Peace and safe travels. Thanks for letting me live some of my Oxford dream vicariously through your generous reporting the last two years.
Aristotle2002: :-)
Aristotle2002: talk to you in person soon enough
NovakFreek: Sounds good. I'll arrange a showing of the Tolkien manuscripts with one of the archivists when you've got a definite date.
Aristotle2002: cool!
Tags: conversations, friends-notre dame era, personal

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