Sunday, February 20, 2005


Hi everyone,

I'm sorry that I've been terrible about keeping this blog updated: teaching that ONE hour a day is so taxing that I find it nearly impossible to take the time to write. I've just been a lazy bum and haven't really felt much like writing. Besides, if there's nothing for me to make fun of, there's no purpose for my writing.

So let's see what's been happening. I love teaching kindergarten. These kids are so funny and, best of all, they don't smell. I'll try to get a picture of them and post it here so that you may all see them. It's so different from working with college students: when I walked in at JCU, students wanted their papers/grades/extra-credit/extensions. When I walk in now, I get hugs, pictures drawn *just* for me, brownies and juice boxes, and genuinely happy faces. For the record, here is the song in its finished form:

Who's the Leader of the Church
That's Made for You and Me?
Jesus Christ!
He Loves Us!
Jesus Christ!
He Loves Us!
Forever Let Us Hold His Banner High!
High! High! High!

So Come Along and Sing Our Song
And Join Us as We Pray to
J-E-S U-S-C H-R-I-S-T!

It's totally cheesy, but the kids really like it, so that's all that matters.

YMCA Update: I am currently developing something called "Muscles." While I was on the long retreat last month, I happened to catch a glimpse of my right arm as I was stepping into the shower and dropped my shampoo to the floor as my left hand flew to the small bump protruding from my flesh, mid-way between my shoulder and elbow. To my great relief, I realized that it was called a Tricep (not a triceratops and, if I had one growing out of my arm, I'd be on Oprah). Yeah, so I'm liking this working out thing. Who'd have thought that I would *EVER* do anything that caused me pain and discomfort (playing a feis?) only to do it again and again and again?

Now, some of you heard that I will be moving to Wyoming to work on a Native American reservation. This is true. But this new development in my life needs some more explaining.

Initially, I had hoped to work through a new cultural medium, say exotic dancing, but that plan was quickly scrapped. Apparently, I've still not the body nor the hair - though I have the body hair - for such a line of work. Ah well, such is life. Thus I decided that I, under the aegis of the Jesuits, would become the third largest land owner in the United States, next to Ted Turner and the late Mother Theresa (don't let anyone fool you, she was a powerful magnet magnate and bought up huge amounts of land where she set up massive strip-mining operations). Now, in my quest for land I have no choice but to turn to the Native Americans, who have much land. Therefore, here is my plan: I will infiltrate their casinos and, under the name Ryan "I Spread the Good Deuce" Duns, I will become the world's greatest black-jack player and, eventually, I'll win all of their land over late-night hands of cards.

Truthfully, I don't know exactly what I'll be doing. I'm really excited about this opportunity as it's a culture I know very little about and it will prove, I believe, to have profound resonance with my own Irish heritage (just less green beer, though this is a peculiarly American convention). This is really just yet another chapter in the Great Jesuit Adventure and I'm thrilled to be embarking upon it. To be sure, I'll keep people updated while I'm there.

Speaking of being there, as an effort to inculturate fully, I've already taken to wearing nothing but a loin cloth and feathers. It's a bit drafty and nippy, but I'm trying to embrace the culture. I just hope they let me on the plane headed for Wyoming in this gear...

Beyond this, I've nothing to report. I'm still trying to find a way to express something of the retreat in such a way that it might be both intelligible to all readers and at least mildly entertaining...sadly, though much of my spiritual life is a joke, I don't know that I'd be able to articulate it in an accessible way. In time, who knows!

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I seldom read blogs. Nor do I update mine any longer with regularity. That said, a post written over by Resident Theologian  spurred me to...