Tuesday, December 29, 2009


I remember as a teenager becoming disgusted at realizing how enthusisastically self referential (reverential?) people in show business were. It happened while watching Micky Rooney and Judy Garland act out a script about two kids putting on a show where they would act out a script -- as if it was the bestest thing EVER! I remember thinking of a whole list of other movies about making movies (Singing in the Rain) and plays about plays (I think Hamlet gets a pass here just for longevity) and just wondering why drama drones couldn't come up with plot devices that weren't actually about themselves.

Here is me trying to understand the self-referential impulse by direct experience.

I just noticed that this is the 307th post to this blog. That means that just a few weeks ago I published my 300th posting. That seems like kind of a lot, I guess. Especially considering that I actually wrote some of them, instead of merely posting links to other sites or embedding video clips. At any rate, is is a round number ending with 2 zeroes.

I'm not really impressed with myself. Perhaps when I get to 1000.

Debt and Equity

From P.J. O'rourke's book Eat the Rich:

"There are two main kinds of investments: debt and equity. Debt is just lending money. A General Motors corporate bond is a "debt instrument." You lend GM money, and GM promises to pay you back, plus interest. Your savings account is also a debt instrument. You lend the bank money, and the bank promises to let you withdraw it, never mind that the interest is less than you'd get from keeping a sock full of buffalo nickels under your bed. And your checking account is a debt instrument, too. You lend the bank money and they...charge you for it? Plus ATM fees? This is probably why so many pistol-waving people rob banks and why so few pistol-waving people rob General Motors."

Might I also add to this list ridiculous overdraft fees on debit cards, fees on getting your past statements, fees on fee administration, and a fee creation fee (they have to pay someone to come up with all those fees).

Thursday, December 10, 2009

Jesus Christ, the Apple Tree

The tree of life my soul hath seen,
Laden with fruit and always green:
The trees of nature fruitless be
Compared with Christ the apple tree.

His beauty doth all things excel:
By faith I know, but ne'er can tell
The glory which I now can see
In Jesus Christ the apple tree.

For happiness I long have sought,
And pleasure dearly I have bought:
I missed of all; but now I see
'Tis found in Christ the apple tree.

I'm weary with my former toil,
Here I will sit and rest awhile:
Under the shadow I will be,
Of Jesus Christ the apple tree.

This fruit doth make my soul to thrive,
It keeps my dying faith alive;
Which makes my soul in haste to be
With Jesus Christ the apple tree.

Music by Elizabeth Poston
Words by Joshua Smith of New Hampshire 1784.