Further Musings

Beauty smote his heart, he looked up from the forsaken land & hope returned to him

Archive for the ‘General’ Category

The Little Way of Ruthie Leming: A Southern Girl, a Small Town, and the Secret of a Good Life

leave a comment »

Recently I read The Little Way of Ruthie Leming, a memoir by Rod Dreher focused around his relationship with his sister, Ruthie, and their small town of Starhill, LA.

Ruthie is a home body who marries her high school sweetheart and builds a house on her parents property.  Rod is writer and wanderer who leaves their rural Louisiana town as soon as he can.  First, for boarding school and eventually to become a newspaper writer in NYC.  The book is a contrast between their personality and choices.

Their simmering conflict over leaving and staying comes to a head when she is diagnosed with terminal lung cancer.  Small town living is shown as its best: rallying around her in her treatments and around her family after she dies.  Rod and his wife look at the social fabric of their lives in the big city.  They decided that no one could care for them in a similar way if something terrible happened, nor do they have the depth of relationship to help others.  In the end they move back to be with the grieving family and to benefit from all that is in Starhill, LA.

Overall I liked the book, Dreher is an excellent writer and his portrayals of small town southern living were vivid.  I read it as I attended my grandfather’s funeral in small town Louisiana and it mirrored much of what I saw around me.  While I don’t read Dreher regularly I appreciate his communitarian spirit: conservatism focused on the good of small community in the modern world.  Sort of a non-Agrarian Wendell Berry.

While I appreciate his writing I’m left unsure about what to do in light of his diagnosis and his solution.  Small town living and staying put is what creates community.   It’s great that his job is portable enough to be done anywhere in America that has an internet connection but that isn’t true for me.  Also, if you are from a place and your family has been there generations, then you can re-graft yourself onto those deep roots and draw the sustenance from them.  But what if you’re not?  What if there isn’t a home to go back to?  What then is the secret to the good life in Dreher’s telling?

Written by furthermusings

November 8, 2014 at 10:05 am

Posted in General

Abe and Art

with one comment

I do about one artistic thing every 5 years.

IMG_1511

Written by furthermusings

October 5, 2014 at 8:25 am

Posted in General

Still reading? Leave a comment?

with 12 comments

Hi friends,

If you’re reading this you’ll have noted I’ve been a lot less consistent with the blog this last year and I’m curious who has kept reading it despite the disappearance of google reader, the light posting on my part and the ubiquity of Facebook.

Do me a favor and leave me a comment if you drop by.  Will help me know if folks still visit.

Thanks!

Andy

Written by furthermusings

August 13, 2013 at 10:14 am

Posted in General

Obituary of Warsaw Ghetto Surviver

leave a comment »

A friend of ours let us know that her Grandmother died last week.  Her obituary was in the NYTimes.

What a staggering life.  Truly amazing.

Written by furthermusings

November 26, 2012 at 9:56 pm

Posted in General

Providence at Night

with 7 comments

Providence at Night

Gorgeous photo of my new home town.

Written by furthermusings

October 26, 2012 at 10:05 am

Posted in General

Still Reading?

with 12 comments

Posts will be a bit light this week as we transit to parts north. 

In the mean time I am curious who reads Further Musings these days.  If you still swing by let me know.  It helps the motivation to know who.s dropping by.  🙂

Written by furthermusings

June 6, 2012 at 6:46 pm

Posted in General

A Personal Connection

leave a comment »

One of my former students caught his first NFL touchdown pass over the weekend.

He’s mostly a special teams player, where the hardest hits are often delivered.  I recall him getting knocked out in a UNC game.

Lest you think that my discussion of the concussion crisis is simply me looking for an ax to grind with the general culture I do have some personal connections.

It’s pretty serious and pretty scary, especially as I look out at the two players in my course this semester and wonder how they will live at age 40 or 50.

Written by furthermusings

December 12, 2011 at 1:34 pm

Posted in General

DPP Day 8: Last Days of Class

with one comment

I’ve almost survived my first semester as a professor.  Whew.

Written by furthermusings

December 8, 2011 at 8:05 pm

Posted in General

A Portriat of Life in the NFL

leave a comment »

The Times is running a long interview with former all-pro lineman Kris Jenkins.

He’s got no axes to grind.  He doesn’t regret his decision to play.

Yet his description of the physical brutality of the game is pretty amazing.

I hope the herbs, roots and pilates help to heal his broken body.

Written by furthermusings

November 19, 2011 at 5:19 pm

Posted in General

Commitment to Weight Loss Is . . .

with one comment

Donating all pants that are now two inches to big.  Gulp.  That’s putting money on what goes in my mouth in the future.

Written by furthermusings

July 19, 2011 at 8:20 am

Posted in General

DPP Day 22: Fractured

with one comment

Can you tell I’m done grading?  Posting binge.

Written by furthermusings

December 22, 2009 at 9:21 pm

Posted in General

You Know I’ll Go Crazy

leave a comment »

U2 posted this music video of a song off their new album on their website.  Thought I’d post it as I though the art was very beautiful.

Writing about it makes me wish I’d taken an art class at some point in my life so I could talk about what it is in the animation that strikes me as such.  The urbanness?  The simplistic depiction of the city’s buildings?  The unashamed love?

For now I’ll have to settle for . . . for .  . . simple, beautiful, and moving.

Written by furthermusings

August 27, 2009 at 9:08 am

Posted in General

More Wildlife

with 7 comments

Despite living adjacent to five parking lots our backyard is an oasis of animal activity.  On any given day we boast a collection of cardinals, brown thrashers, robins, several squirrels, and our three neighborhood cats, who follow each other through their prowling routes.  We have seen owls, woodpeckers, deer (curse them), and chipmunks.  And now we can add snakes.  I haven’t made an id yet.  Any ideas?

snakewithdogwoodtree

snakefulllength

Written by furthermusings

May 4, 2009 at 8:28 am

Posted in General

Irises

leave a comment »

Last year we took a good bit of time to seperate out the irises in the backyard and we got about four flowers.  This year we’ve had 40 flowers and they’ve been a spectacular and prolonged treat.  Amazingly we managed to blindly seperate out the white ones into their own bed and leave the yellow and purple.  They’ve been beautiful.

irisesintheeveningsun

Written by furthermusings

May 3, 2009 at 2:21 pm

Posted in General

The December Photo Project Returns

with one comment

This year I’ll be endeavoring again to post a photo everyday for the month of December.  Thanks to Rebecca for organizing and I’m looking forward to both posting and watching the other entries.

dpp_banner

Written by furthermusings

November 28, 2008 at 6:56 pm

Posted in General