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Errantry: Novak's Journal
...Words to cast/My feelings into sculpted thoughts/To make some wisdom last
Personal: An Old Note – Thinking of Griff 
22nd-Nov-2008 11:45 am
Golden Birthday
Heh. Just found a way to re-archive all my old Eudora-based email from the 90s in a contemporary format, so all that stuff is safe now. Opened a note to Erik at random. Good stuff. It had a funny bit at the end of it about my standing weekly lunch with Griff, shortly after I'd started dating Jen S.
Had my usual lunch today with Fr. Griffin and I brought Jen along. It went fabulously. He was his usual interesting and occasionally quirky self. Early on, he put down his fork, cocked his head to one side and said, "You're very pretty. ... [Worried look] Can I say that?" Jen was charmed. I was charmed. She's charming.
Reminds me that I've not talked with her in forever, and have to drop her a line to catch up. And I owe Erik a call. But I'm really really wishing that I could drop by for lunch now with old Griff.
22nd-Nov-2008 06:15 pm (UTC)
Holy Mackeral--I bookmarked that obituary, that was amazing. He must have been quite a person to know.
22nd-Nov-2008 06:31 pm (UTC)
He was fading some when I arrived at Notre Dame, and certainly had nothing like the cult following he had had in the 1960s and 70s. I read his weekly column at times and I thought it was either brilliant or completely cracked, and when I would see him walking on campus I thought him a most lonely figure.

I absolutely dreaded his walking up to me, as he finally did, to ask his trademark question (without knowing anything about me), "Do you think God is lonely?" My answer, of course, was "Yes and no." This, naturally, had to be expanded-upon, and we got to be good friends over time, sharing most of our meals for some months when we lived together while he was recuperating from a heart attack and while I was one of two grad students living in the retirement and nursing center for the priests and brothers at Notre Dame (an assistantship of sorts that paid room and board – a great social experience). For reasons obscure to everyone but him, he often called me "Raskolnikov," after the not-so-attractive protagonist of Crime and Punishment.
22nd-Nov-2008 06:34 pm (UTC)
Raskolnikov, eh? That's interesting...

I have been deprived of enigmatic old people in my life.
23rd-Nov-2008 09:25 am (UTC)
"Terrifying" is more the word I might have chosen....
23rd-Nov-2008 02:13 am (UTC)

Of all the Dostoevsky characters you remind me of, Raskolnikov never entered my head.
23rd-Nov-2008 09:26 am (UTC)
It certainly made me wonder what he might be seeing in me that I wasn't seeing....
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