Sunday, September 30, 2007
My thanks to PJ and Alliver...
JM and Clair...
Mark and Diane...
Carlo and Mich...
Elbert and Estelle...
Shari and Robby...
Markpoa and Mario (Yihee!!!)...
And of course, to my Beloved. I love you so much, and thank you for making my birthday a very happy one.
Friday, September 28, 2007
I was feeling so under the weather this morning that I had no choice but to take a half-day. I missed one of my three favorite classes, Columbia, because of that.
.:I've Fallen For You...:.
Watched it last night with my Beloved. It was loads of fun, as Row and I let out our inner jologs...
Movie review some other time. =P
Let's face it. Children's party magic is expensive. You need lots of colorful, gaudy props, at times, even live animals, and compacted versions of stage magic effects just so you can keep the interest of kids going.
Mentalism, in contrast, is a relatively low-cost endeavor, which is ironic when you realize that it plays off very well in a stage setting.
That being said, last Sunday, I found a way to have a decent mix of the two going, albeit I have to admit that it wasn't perfect yet, it was, at least, interesting in that I knew for a fact that it worked well enough, since doing ORBS, Liquid Metal, and the Wizard Manual, while all very much mentalism effects, still captured the fancy of the children, even if some of them were preoccupied with me pulling their underwear from out of them. =P
And so it was the birthday celebration for Reedley's founder, Mrs. Ong...
And so it came to pass that the new teachers had a group presentation, and I just so happened to be partnered with the closest colleague I have at the moment, who shall remain unnamed for her sake.
And so we went there and did our Tropang Trumpo dance splendidly, and we even did our joke to much aplomb.
Then it happened. We had to do the swing.
My partner and I were smack dab in the center of the floor, and were noticeably the only pare who had no idea what the Hades they were doing there. It was sheer embarrassment, to say the least. We were not in tune at all, and it was just mortifying how we kept on fumbling the steps repeatedly.
Words cannot express my horror at that, which promptly ruined the rest of the night for me, as I felt like a fish out of the water as my partner tried to dance some more to much more success, while I felt I didn't need to be reminded of how horrid I was.
Moments like those can really take the wind out of your sails, especially when you're usually the life of a party...
For years, my favorite musical has always been Jesus Christ Superstar. With all the music and pizazz, it was just nothing short of splendid to see the passion of Christ done in very catchy songs, and interpreted in a very imaginative way.
Upon seeing Avenue Q last weekend though, I was blown away. The Philippine staging was as awesome as I imagined it, and even if they never took liberties with attempting to localize some of the musical's lyrics, I was still extremely happy with how well they pulled it off, and even with their excellent casting, such as Aiza Seguerra as Gary Coleman and Rachel Alejandro as Kate Monster/Lucy the Slut.
I noticed that a particular song wasn't included during the performance, that is, “Tear It Up And Throw It Away”, but despite that, it was still a really awesome musical despite that one missing song. I don't know where it could've fallen into place in the original script, but it's all good, and so was not changing “George Bush” in the last song, but hey, I'm not complaining much, since everything else about the play was just splendid.
The songs really resonate. From the tongue-in-cheek but honest messages in “Everyone's A Little Bit Racist”, “The Internet Is For Porn”, “Schadenfreude”, and “If You Were Gay”, you also have the real but cartoonized “The More You Love Someone”, to the true-to-form “It Sucks To Be Me”, and to the heart-wrenching “There's A Fine, Fine Line”. All in all, the songs were splendid to hear live, and I stand by my belief that Kate Monster sounds so much like Delamar, and even Rachel Alejandro's interpretation reflected that.
I watched Avenue Q with the JGL, as it was myself, Clair, JM, Charo, and Sean, and after the show, I even bought myself a Kate Monster button and performed a magic trick for Aiza Seguerra and Rachel Alejandro.
Amusingly enough, it turns out that my Beloved and Aiza are high school buddies, and are still regularly in touch with each other.
I especially liked the “logic” employed by the Bad Idea Bears... why buy a six-pack when you can buy a case of beer so you can save in the long run?
The play was an excellent post-modern look at life and love and finding one's purpose. I swear. My favorite line from the musical had to be the one Kate told Princeton after they broke up because Princeton was scared of commitment and how he felt that he was a mess since he couldn't find his purpose. Princeton was on his way to his apartment with Lucy the Slut in tow (Yes, Rachel was pulling double duty on the voices here.), and then...
Kate: Is that your new friend, Princeton?
Princeton: Yes, she is.
Kate: Is her name Purpose?
I can't help but wonder how things would've turned out if I made it through the auditions. I'd almost give my left arm to be part of the cast, but then that'd mean I can't play Trekkie Monster. =P
Wednesday, September 26, 2007
My health isn't cooperating with me. I've been under the weather for the past couple of weeks. Nonetheless, it's still all good, since somehow, I managed to keep on going to work on time and even with a few minutes to spare. In any case, I'm just really happy that I have the time to really finish a good chunk of my work, and I am definitely enjoying my work, despite this minor setback.
.:I Wonder How It'd Turn Out...:.
Yes, I turn 24 this coming Saturday. Seeing how my students cannot even identify who the Spice Girls are makes me feel really old...
Tuesday, September 25, 2007
My Beloved took the time out to sit in on my Philosophy class last night.
I can't tell you enough how happy I was that she finally got to hear Mr. Calasanz firsthand, and find out why I've been raving about his class for the longest time...
Nothing quite like being with my Beloved to start my week off right...
... is now a weekly activity for my classes. At least, that's what they said they wanted to happen...
- I made a fool of myself doing the swing with Audrey the same night.
- I had a magic show for my cousin's party last Sunday.
- I saw "Rogue Assassin" with my Beloved the same night. I kinda liked it.
- I handled the lights for last Monday's choral recitation.
- Congratulations to Columbia! You guys were awesome!
Friday, September 21, 2007
I have successfully finished the running totals for my students' grades, and it's a relief, to say the least.
I'm rather happy that for the most part, I'm not too worried about failing students at the moment. That's a really good thing, I suppose.
A happy monthsary to you, my Beloved!
.:Must. Talk. About. Succubus...:.
This is just a reminder for me to do some backblogging on a topic that just really hit me the other day...
Thursday, September 20, 2007
... it's harder to tell someone what they need to get an A in a paper the closer they are to an A. Mr. Calasanz made me realize that it's just a very tricky question to answer, unlike if my paper was simply a C or something. I guess it's just a knack that you develop, where when you see an A paper, you'd know it for sure, but once you're still asking yourself if it's an A paper or not, then it's simply not an A paper yet.
It's a knack I need to develop, I guess. Funny how sir brought up that when I was still a freshman, I was visibly upset over failing a quiz under him back then. It was six or so years ago, and he still remembers it like yesterday, and it's leaps and bounds different from the kind of rapport I find myself having with him nowadays, as I see him as some kind of a mentor who really guides me as I embark on my oft-hazardous philosophical journey.
.:I Love My Students:.
A majority of them are brilliant and funny, but at the same time, I'm glad that most of them really show me that I have much cause for pride in being a teacher here.
Now, if only they could stop with the intrigues, but I guess this is high school... =P
My Beloved and I rarely get to meet each other lately, so I'm just grateful that we found the time yesterday.
While things have been rocky as of late because of my busy schedule, I'm glad that she's still there for me. She's a very wonderful person who has given me great cause for joy in my life, and I love her so much.
I was just glad we had a bit of time with each other to just simply hang out and talk because we really needed to clear the air about a lot of things that have been going on lately, to say the least.
.:This Is Interesting...:.
Dr. Cuyegkeng, one of the administrators of Ateneo de Manila University, was reportedly given a standing derision from a few students who were actively voicing their displeasure over the university's current disposition to set specific guidelines for the existing dress code in the student's handbook, much to the dismay of some of the students whose current fashion choices will inevitably be affected.
While there are no definite items that have been taken up for discussion, several assumptions can almost be safely made, including the idea that chances are, the likes of Havaianas, flip-flops, spaghetti straps, and so forth will meet the axe once such a dress code is implemented.
Will I personally be affected by this? No. I always dress in office attire.
Do I care that they are "impinging on my personal freedom", as was posited by Bobby Benedicto? Quite frankly, I don't think that is the case. How we dress is not an essential "right" that is inextricable from our ability to do well academically. If anything, I'm inclined to think that it's merely a privilege, and not at all a right.
If that be the case, therefore, then yes, given the flagrant violations of what is already a vague dress code as is, I think that the only hindrance to enforcing the dress code at the moment is the lack of specific guidelines so that one can have a rubric of sorts to determine who and who is not in violation of the dress code.
At the same time, if the students have to meet a dress code, then the faculty must also be a step ahead, and thus, all members of the faculty have to follow a dress code all the same.
Now, of course, that might mean certain trademarks, like Fr. Ferriols' slippers, and the gothic attire worn by some teachers at times would have to be out of vogue, but what's good for the goose ought to be good for the gander, right?
At least, that's what I think. What do you think?
Wednesday, September 19, 2007
Well, they don't have to worry about A now as it's definitely clear to them that it's not her. That being said, things have been very hectic for me lately. The students are really quite a handful, to say the least.
Anyways, it's all good so far...
Tuesday, September 18, 2007
Due to unforeseen circumstances, I'm beginning to wonder if I'd actually still make it to watch Avenue Q. I'm a bit frustrated because the timing of this unforeseen circumstance is just so unbelievably frustrating.
That being said, we'll see what happens, then. I'm really just not in the highest of spirits as of late, and I have a feeling that for as long as I'm on this kind of a schedule, I will continue to be a really sporadic blogger. Sigh...
Friday, September 14, 2007
Thursday, September 13, 2007
Wednesday, September 12, 2007
And so, Joseph Estrada is judged guilty of plunder. A six-year odyssey, and at last, a decision has been handed down, yet we're left to ask, "now what"?
He's guilty, and is, for all intents and purposes, the recipient of a life sentence. Despite that, why does it feel as if he's not exactly being punished, but simply being placed in a position where he cannot directly stir people to action against the Arroyo administration, yet still far from a position where he can become an inspiration for those who want to go against GMA?
The guilty verdict was done in such a way that he can't be made a martyr or a poster-boy for the masses. The guilty verdict also prevented him from carrying out any attempts at getting back in Malacanang since he's still not a free man.
Obviously, the decision favors the Arroyo administration. It's the best way to make the most out of a seemingly no-win situation.
So after six years, do we finally have justice? Hah! We don't.
A really funny story the late Dr. Doreen Fernandez read to my English class years ago, "Love Is A Fallacy" is a story I now share to my students in Reedley. It's long, and takes quite a bit of time to tell, but it succinctly covers everything that needs to be covered in discussing logical fallacies.
Love Is A Fallacy
by Max Shulman
Cool was I and logical. Keen, calculating, perspicacious, acute and astute—I was all of these. My brain was as powerful as a dynamo, precise as a chemist’s scales, as penetrating as a scalpel. And—think of it!— I was only eighteen.
It is not often that one so young has such a giant intellect. Take, for example, Petey Bellows, my roommate at the university. Same age, same background, but dumb as an ox. A nice enough fellow, you understand, but nothing upstairs. Emotional type. Unstable. Impressionable. Worst of all, a faddist. Fads, I submit, are the very negation of reason. To be swept up in every new craze that comes along, to surrender oneself to idiocy just because everybody else is doing it—this, to me, is the acme of mindlessness. Not, however, to Petey.
One afternoon I found Petey lying on his bed with an expression of such distress on his face that I immediately diagnosed appendicitis. “Don’t move,” I said, “Don’t take a laxative. I’ll get a doctor.”
“Raccoon,” he mumbled thickly.
“Raccoon?” I said, pausing in my flight.
“I want a raccoon coat,” he wailed.
I perceived that his trouble was not physical, but mental. “Why do you want a raccoon coat?”
“I should have known it,” he cried, pounding his temples. “I should have known they’d come back when the Charleston came back. Like a fool I spent all my money for textbooks, and now I can’t get a raccoon coat.”
“Can you mean,” I said incredulously, “that people are actually wearing raccoon coats again?”
“All the Big Men on Campus are wearing them. Where’ve you been?”
“In the library,” I said, naming a place not frequented by Big Men on Campus.
He leaped from the bed and paced the room. “I’ve got to have a raccoon coat,” he said passionately. “I’ve got to!”
“Petey, why? Look at it rationally. Raccoon coats are unsanitary. They shed. They smell bad. They weigh too much. They’re unsightly. They—”
“You don’t understand,” he interrupted impatiently. “It’s the thing to do. Don’t you want to be in the swim?”
“No,” I said truthfully.
“Well, I do,” he declared. “I’d give anything for a raccoon coat. Anything!”
My brain, that precision instrument, slipped into high gear. “Anything?” I asked, looking at him narrowly.
“Anything,” he affirmed in ringing tones.
I stroked my chin thoughtfully. It so happened that I knew where to get my hands on a raccoon coat. My father had had one in his undergraduate days; it lay now in a trunk in the attic back home. It also happened that Petey had something I wanted. He didn’t have it exactly, but at least he had first rights on it. I refer to his girl, Polly Espy.
I had long coveted Polly Espy. Let me emphasize that my desire for this young woman was not emotional in nature. She was, to be sure, a girl who excited the emotions, but I was not one to let my heart rule my head. I wanted Polly for a shrewdly calculated, entirely cerebral reason.
I was a freshman in law school. In a few years I would be out in practice. I was well aware of the importance of the right kind of wife in furthering a lawyer’s career. The successful lawyers I had observed were, almost without exception, married to beautiful, gracious, intelligent women. With one omission, Polly fitted these specifications perfectly.
Beautiful she was. She was not yet of pin-up proportions, but I felt that time would supply the lack. She already had the makings.
Gracious she was. By gracious I mean full of graces. She had an erectness of carriage, an ease of bearing, a poise that clearly indicated the best of breeding. At table her manners were exquisite. I had seen her at the Kozy Kampus Korner eating the specialty of the house—a sandwich that contained scraps of pot roast, gravy, chopped nuts, and a dipper of sauerkraut—without even getting her fingers moist.
Intelligent she was not. In fact, she veered in the opposite direction. But I believed that under my guidance she would smarten up. At any rate, it was worth a try. It is, after all, easier to make a beautiful dumb girl smart than to make an ugly smart girl beautiful.
“Petey,” I said, “are you in love with Polly Espy?”
“I think she’s a keen kid,” he replied, “but I don’t know if you’d call it love. Why?”
“Do you,” I asked, “have any kind of formal arrangement with her? I mean are you going steady or anything like that?”
“No. We see each other quite a bit, but we both have other dates. Why?”
“Is there,” I asked, “any other man for whom she has a particular fondness?”
“Not that I know of. Why?”
I nodded with satisfaction. “In other words, if you were out of the picture, the field would be open. Is that right?”
“I guess so. What are you getting at?”
“Nothing , nothing,” I said innocently, and took my suitcase out the closet.
“Where are you going?” asked Petey.
“Home for weekend.” I threw a few things into the bag.
“Listen,” he said, clutching my arm eagerly, “while you’re home, you couldn’t get some money from your old man, could you, and lend it to me so I can buy a raccoon coat?”
“I may do better than that,” I said with a mysterious wink and closed my bag and left.
“Look,” I said to Petey when I got back Monday morning. I threw open the suitcase and revealed the huge, hairy, gamy object that my father had worn in his Stutz Bearcat in 1925.
“Holy Toledo!” said Petey reverently. He plunged his hands into the raccoon coat and then his face. “Holy Toledo!” he repeated fifteen or twenty times.
“Would you like it?” I asked.
“Oh yes!” he cried, clutching the greasy pelt to him. Then a canny look came into his eyes. “What do you want for it?”
“Your girl.” I said, mincing no words.
“Polly?” he said in a horrified whisper. “You want Polly?”
He flung the coat from him. “Never,” he said stoutly.
I shrugged. “Okay. If you don’t want to be in the swim, I guess it’s your business.”
I sat down in a chair and pretended to read a book, but out of the corner of my eye I kept watching Petey. He was a torn man. First he looked at the coat with the expression of a waif at a bakery window. Then he turned away and set his jaw resolutely. Then he looked back at the coat, with even more longing in his face. Then he turned away, but with not so much resolution this time. Back and forth his head swiveled, desire waxing, resolution waning. Finally he didn’t turn away at all; he just stood and stared with mad lust at the coat.
“It isn’t as though I was in love with Polly,” he said thickly. “Or going steady or anything like that.”
“That’s right,” I murmured.
“What’s Polly to me, or me to Polly?”
“Not a thing,” said I.
“It’s just been a casual kick—just a few laughs, that’s all.”
“Try on the coat,” said I.
He complied. The coat bunched high over his ears and dropped all the way down to his shoe tops. He looked like a mound of dead raccoons. “Fits fine,” he said happily.
I rose from my chair. “Is it a deal?” I asked, extending my hand.
He swallowed. “It’s a deal,” he said and shook my hand.
I had my first date with Polly the following evening. This was in the nature of a survey; I wanted to find out just how much work I had to do to get her mind up to the standard I required. I took her first to dinner. “Gee, that was a delish dinner,” she said as we left the restaurant. Then I took her to a movie. “Gee, that was a marvy movie,” she said as we left the theatre. And then I took her home. “Gee, I had a sensaysh time,” she said as she bade me good night.
I went back to my room with a heavy heart. I had gravely underestimated the size of my task. This girl’s lack of information was terrifying. Nor would it be enough merely to supply her with information. First she had to be taught to think. This loomed as a project of no small dimensions, and at first I was tempted to give her back to Petey. But then I got to thinking about her abundant physical charms and about the way she entered a room and the way she handled a knife and fork, and I decided to make an effort.
I went about it, as in all things, systematically. I gave her a course in logic. It happened that I, as a law student, was taking a course in logic myself, so I had all the facts at my fingertips. “Poll’,” I said to her when I picked her up on our next date, “tonight we are going over to the Knoll and talk.”
“Oo, terrif,” she replied. One thing I will say for this girl: you would go far to find another so agreeable.
We went to the Knoll, the campus trysting place, and we sat down under an old oak, and she looked at me expectantly. “What are we going to talk about?” she asked.
She thought this over for a minute and decided she liked it. “Magnif,” she said.
“Logic,” I said, clearing my throat, “is the science of thinking. Before we can think correctly, we must first learn to recognize the common fallacies of logic. These we will take up tonight.”
“Wow-dow!” she cried, clapping her hands delightedly.
I winced, but went bravely on. “First let us examine the fallacy called Dicto Simpliciter.”
“By all means,” she urged, batting her lashes eagerly.
“Dicto Simpliciter means an argument based on an unqualified generalization. For example: Exercise is good. Therefore everybody should exercise.”
“I agree,” said Polly earnestly. “I mean exercise is wonderful. I mean it builds the body and everything.”
“Polly,” I said gently, “the argument is a fallacy. Exercise is good is an unqualified generalization. For instance, if you have heart disease, exercise is bad, not good. Many people are ordered by their doctors not to exercise. You must qualify the generalization. You must say exercise is usually good, or exercise is good for most people. Otherwise you have committed a Dicto Simpliciter. Do you see?”
“No,” she confessed. “But this is marvy. Do more! Do more!”
“It will be better if you stop tugging at my sleeve,” I told her, and when she desisted, I continued. “Next we take up a fallacy called Hasty Generalization. Listen carefully: You can’t speak French. Petey Bellows can’t speak French. I must therefore conclude that nobody at the University of Minnesota can speak French.”
“Really?” said Polly, amazed. “Nobody?”
I hid my exasperation. “Polly, it’s a fallacy. The generalization is reached too hastily. There are too few instances to support such a conclusion.”
“Know any more fallacies?” she asked breathlessly. “This is more fun than dancing even.”
I fought off a wave of despair. I was getting nowhere with this girl, absolutely nowhere. Still, I am nothing if not persistent. I continued. “Next comes Post Hoc. Listen to this: Let’s not take Bill on our picnic. Every time we take him out with us, it rains.”
“I know somebody just like that,” she exclaimed. “A girl back home—Eula Becker, her name is. It never fails. Every single time we take her on a picnic—”
“Polly,” I said sharply, “it’s a fallacy. Eula Becker doesn’t cause the rain. She has no connection with the rain. You are guilty of Post Hoc if you blame Eula Becker.”
“I’ll never do it again,” she promised contritely. “Are you mad at me?”
I sighed. “No, Polly, I’m not mad.”
“Then tell me some more fallacies.”
“All right. Let’s try Contradictory Premises.”
“Yes, let’s,” she chirped, blinking her eyes happily.
I frowned, but plunged ahead. “Here’s an example of Contradictory Premises: If God can do anything, can He make a stone so heavy that He won’t be able to lift it?”
“Of course,” she replied promptly.
“But if He can do anything, He can lift the stone,” I pointed out.
“Yeah,” she said thoughtfully. “Well, then I guess He can’t make the stone.”
“But He can do anything,” I reminded her.
She scratched her pretty, empty head. “I’m all confused,” she admitted.
“Of course you are. Because when the premises of an argument contradict each other, there can be no argument. If there is an irresistible force, there can be no immovable object. If there is an immovable object, there can be no irresistible force. Get it?”
“Tell me more of this keen stuff,” she said eagerly.
I consulted my watch. “I think we’d better call it a night. I’ll take you home now, and you go over all the things you’ve learned. We’ll have another session tomorrow night.”
I deposited her at the girls’ dormitory, where she assured me that she had had a perfectly terrif evening, and I went glumly home to my room. Petey lay snoring in his bed, the raccoon coat huddled like a great hairy beast at his feet. For a moment I considered waking him and telling him that he could have his girl back. It seemed clear that my project was doomed to failure. The girl simply had a logic-proof head.
But then I reconsidered. I had wasted one evening; I might as well waste another. Who knew? Maybe somewhere in the extinct crater of her mind a few members still smoldered. Maybe somehow I could fan them into flame. Admittedly it was not a prospect fraught with hope, but I decided to give it one more try.
Seated under the oak the next evening I said, “Our first fallacy tonight is called Ad Misericordiam.”
She quivered with delight.
“Listen closely,” I said. “A man applies for a job. When the boss asks him what his qualifications are, he replies that he has a wife and six children at home, the wife is a helpless cripple, the children have nothing to eat, no clothes to wear, no shoes on their feet, there are no beds in the house, no coal in the cellar, and winter is coming.”
A tear rolled down each of Polly’s pink cheeks. “Oh, this is awful, awful,” she sobbed.
“Yes, it’s awful,” I agreed, “but it’s no argument. The man never answered the boss’s question about his qualifications. Instead he appealed to the boss’s sympathy. He committed the fallacy of Ad Misericordiam. Do you understand?”
“Have you got a handkerchief?” she blubbered.
I handed her a handkerchief and tried to keep from screaming while she wiped her eyes. “Next,” I said in a carefully controlled tone, “we will discuss False Analogy. Here is an example: Students should be allowed to look at their textbooks during examinations. After all, surgeons have X-rays to guide them during an operation, lawyers have briefs to guide them during a trial, carpenters have blueprints to guide them when they are building a house. Why, then, shouldn’t students be allowed to look at their textbooks during an examination?”
“There now,” she said enthusiastically, “is the most marvy idea I’ve heard in years.”
“Polly,” I said testily, “the argument is all wrong. Doctors, lawyers, and carpenters aren’t taking a test to see how much they have learned, but students are. The situations are altogether different, and you can’t make an analogy between them.”
“I still think it’s a good idea,” said Polly.
“Nuts,” I muttered. Doggedly I pressed on. “Next we’ll try Hypothesis Contrary to Fact.”
“Sounds yummy,” was Polly’s reaction.
“Listen: If Madame Curie had not happened to leave a photographic plate in a drawer with a chunk of pitchblende, the world today would not know about radium.”
“True, true,” said Polly, nodding her head “Did you see the movie? Oh, it just knocked me out. That Walter Pidgeon is so dreamy. I mean he fractures me.”
“If you can forget Mr. Pidgeon for a moment,” I said coldly, “I would like to point out that statement is a fallacy. Maybe Madame Curie would have discovered radium at some later date. Maybe somebody else would have discovered it. Maybe any number of things would have happened. You can’t start with a hypothesis that is not true and then draw any supportable conclusions from it.”
“They ought to put Walter Pidgeon in more pictures,” said Polly, “I hardly ever see him any more.”
One more chance, I decided. But just one more. There is a limit to what flesh and blood can bear. “The next fallacy is called Poisoning the Well.”
“How cute!” she gurgled.
“Two men are having a debate. The first one gets up and says, ‘My opponent is a notorious liar. You can’t believe a word that he is going to say.’ ... Now, Polly, think. Think hard. What’s wrong?”
I watched her closely as she knit her creamy brow in concentration. Suddenly a glimmer of intelligence—the first I had seen—came into her eyes. “It’s not fair,” she said with indignation. “It’s not a bit fair. What chance has the second man got if the first man calls him a liar before he even begins talking?”
“Right!” I cried exultantly. “One hundred per cent right. It’s not fair. The first man has poisoned the well before anybody could drink from it. He has hamstrung his opponent before he could even start ... Polly, I’m proud of you.”
“Pshaws,” she murmured, blushing with pleasure.
“You see, my dear, these things aren’t so hard. All you have to do is concentrate. Think—examine—evaluate. Come now, let’s review everything we have learned.”
“Fire away,” she said with an airy wave of her hand.
Heartened by the knowledge that Polly was not altogether a cretin, I began a long, patient review of all I had told her. Over and over and over again I cited instances, pointed out flaws, kept hammering away without letup. It was like digging a tunnel. At first, everything was work, sweat, and darkness. I had no idea when I would reach the light, or even if I would. But I persisted. I pounded and clawed and scraped, and finally I was rewarded. I saw a chink of light. And then the chink got bigger and the sun came pouring in and all was bright.
Five grueling nights with this took, but it was worth it. I had made a logician out of Polly; I had taught her to think. My job was done. She was worthy of me, at last. She was a fit wife for me, a proper hostess for my many mansions, a suitable mother for my well-heeled children.
It must not be thought that I was without love for this girl. Quite the contrary. Just as Pygmalion loved the perfect woman he had fashioned, so I loved mine. I decided to acquaint her with my feelings at our very next meeting. The time had come to change our relationship from academic to romantic.
“Polly,” I said when next we sat beneath our oak, “tonight we will not discuss fallacies.”
“Aw, gee,” she said, disappointed.
“My dear,” I said, favoring her with a smile, “we have now spent five evenings together. We have gotten along splendidly. It is clear that we are well matched.”
“Hasty Generalization,” said Polly brightly.
“I beg your pardon,” said I.
“Hasty Generalization,” she repeated. “How can you say that we are well matched on the basis of only five dates?”
I chuckled with amusement. The dear child had learned her lessons well. “My dear,” I said, patting her hand in a tolerant manner, “five dates is plenty. After all, you don’t have to eat a whole cake to know that it’s good.”
“False Analogy,” said Polly promptly. “I’m not a cake. I’m a girl.”
I chuckled with somewhat less amusement. The dear child had learned her lessons perhaps too well. I decided to change tactics. Obviously the best approach was a simple, strong, direct declaration of love. I paused for a moment while my massive brain chose the proper word. Then I began:
“Polly, I love you. You are the whole world to me, the moon and the stars and the constellations of outer space. Please, my darling, say that you will go steady with me, for if you will not, life will be meaningless. I will languish. I will refuse my meals. I will wander the face of the earth, a shambling, hollow-eyed hulk.”
There, I thought, folding my arms, that ought to do it.
“Ad Misericordiam,” said Polly.
I ground my teeth. I was not Pygmalion; I was Frankenstein, and my monster had me by the throat. Frantically I fought back the tide of panic surging through me; at all costs I had to keep cool.
“Well, Polly,” I said, forcing a smile, “you certainly have learned your fallacies.”
“You’re darn right,” she said with a vigorous nod.
“And who taught them to you, Polly?”
“That’s right. So you do owe me something, don’t you, my dear? If I hadn’t come along you never would have learned about fallacies.”
“Hypothesis Contrary to Fact,” she said instantly.
I dashed perspiration from my brow. “Polly,” I croaked, “you mustn’t take all these things so literally. I mean this is just classroom stuff. You know that the things you learn in school don’t have anything to do with life.”
“Dicto Simpliciter,” she said, wagging her finger at me playfully.
That did it. I leaped to my feet, bellowing like a bull. “Will you or will you not go steady with me?”
“I will not,” she replied.
“Why not?” I demanded.
“Because this afternoon I promised Petey Bellows that I would go steady with him.”
I reeled back, overcome with the infamy of it. After he promised, after he made a deal, after he shook my hand! “The rat!” I shrieked, kicking up great chunks of turf. “You can’t go with him, Polly. He’s a liar. He’s a cheat. He’s a rat.”
“Poisoning the Well ,” said Polly, “and stop shouting. I think shouting must be a fallacy too.”
With an immense effort of will, I modulated my voice. “All right,” I said. “You’re a logician. Let’s look at this thing logically. How could you choose Petey Bellows over me? Look at me—a brilliant student, a tremendous intellectual, a man with an assured future. Look at Petey—a knothead, a jitterbug, a guy who’ll never know where his next meal is coming from. Can you give me one logical reason why you should go steady with Petey Bellows?”
“I certainly can,” declared Polly. “He’s got a raccoon coat.”
While it's a big deal to me that I got a good score in Mr. Calasanz's midterm exam, it still makes one wonder what it takes to get an A, since I only got an A-, and nobody got an A or better. Given open notes, open discussion, and internet access, it's very understandable why sir's standards are extremely high, but I do wonder what it takes to meet those standards satisfactorily.
In any case, here's my answer in full...
Write a clear, coherent, and comprehensive essay answering the following question:
What does Heidegger mean by the “onto-theological constitution of metaphysics?” Would Hans Un von Balthazar's fourfold difference be characterized by this onto-theological constitution?
Metaphysics is of great import to Heidegger's philosophical itinerary. Whether he is attempting to explain it or he is attempting to “overcome” it, there is much that remains untouched in the realm of metaphysics since the fundamental and pivotal metaphysical question implied by Parmenides' poem, as succinctly expressed by Leibniz, “why is there something rather than nothing?” Has been asked. Heidegger trudges along and away from the path of metaphysics in a genuine attempt to answer why there is. While a value judgment on Heidegger's body of work in this regard is up for much debate, it cannot be denied that his thinking has provoked a radically different way of seeing metaphysics: now, metaphysics is being turned on its ear by Heidegger as he now studies Being more extensively than being, while consciously ensuring that he does not fall for the same traps other thinkers have fallen for, particularly in their own ways of discussing or even defining Being.
There is much difficulty in attempting to follow Heidegger's line of thinking in this sense, particularly of his vacillating regard for metaphysics. While metaphysics at its most basic definition is the study of being as being, according to Heidegger, metaphysics inquires about beings with respect to Being, but in it the question of Being as such is disregarded and Being itself is obliterated. He finds much to critique with the way other thinkers in the past have reduced Being into a being the way that chairs and people and dogs are beings, mainly because he believes this is not the way to understand the question of Being: be it idea in Plato, substantia and actualitas in Medieval philosophy, objectivity in modern philosophy, and will to power in Nietzsche and contemporary thought, to name a few reductions. Heidegger's struggle was for him to make his way back into primordial thought, thus bypassing Nietzsche all the way to Socrates in favor of a closer look at the Pre-Socratics, not merely to rehash their thoughts regarding Being, but to look at them in a new and revolutionary manner, hence the revisitation of Parmenides' poem.
It is clear at this point, by making a point to criticize subsequent attempts to characterize Being by thinkers from Socrates onwards, that Heidegger emphasizes that Being is not itself a being. In his attempt to find a formative way of looking at metaphysics, he employs a “step back” from the very framework he is immersed in, from the realm of what is unthought or taken for granted, into what gives us thought. Heidegger, at this point, confronts a very fundamental relationship in metaphysics, which he believes to be very constitutive of the import of metaphysics: the relationship between Being and beings. The relationship is investigated as rigorously as Being and beings themselves, and in doing so, Heidegger asserts that the source of the relationship or difference between Being and beings is also Being itself. Heidegger's line of thinking can easily be followed here. Once the implication that the source is Being itself, he logically arrives at his conceptual ground for beings, as it were: Being itself, all the same.
Thus, we arrive at his formulation of an onto-theological constitution of metaphysics: metaphysics is ontological, according to him, because it is an attempt to account for beings through the use of a conceptual ground, whether it be the cogito, the Will to Power, the Will to Will, and the like. Metaphysics is theological, because at some point, metaphysics can and will have to address a notion of the deity, i.e., the highest, especially when we begin to note how Being for Heidegger grounds beings, is the source for the relationship of Being and beings, yet beings account for Being by being (verb) there as testament to Being. The deity enters metaphysics through the holding fast to what we think initially as the approach to the active nature of the difference between Being and beings. Because the thinking of metaphysics, in doing the step back we described, remains in the difference of what is perceived to be the same, that which is unthought, i.e., the difference between Being and beings, we can thereby say that metaphysics is an ontology and a theology in a unified sense.
Indeed, metaphysics has an onto-theological constitution, given these premises, yet with much irony, Heidegger is still guilty of skirting the issue of a thorough discussion of God. It is not that Heidegger was being atheistic in his discussion on the deity by using the less loaded word, “Zeus”, but rather, that he was postponing this question as it was, to him, not as important as the more pertinent matters he was trying to address in the essay, mainly, the relationship of Being and beings, and how this could be constitutive of metaphysics. Heidegger attempts to deantropomorphize his conception of God by calling him merely causa sui, or the uncaused cause, making the highest less of a grandiose God and more of a brute reality that must be in order for all beings to come to be, thus, in his words, a god that one cannot pray to or sacrifice to.
Instead of allowing something outside of the relationship between Being and beings to be the source of the relationship or the difference, Heidegger plays safe by not addressing that implication and instead ascribing it to Being itself. As such, Heidegger's refusal to answer the question of God with any conviction has, with his death, become tantamount to a denial of God in the eyes of his critics. Yes, Heidegger could not be called an atheist in the strict sense, but in his deliberate attempt at skirting the issue, he is as good as one already.
In Heidegger's defense though, it was really only an external imposition upon him to address the question of God, and moreover, he never made an attempt to shut out any further discussion on God within his framework, albeit he was not particularly compelled to truly engage the discussion himself to begin with. If he were to subject himself to the whims of those who clamored for theology in his work, or those who clamored for ethics in his work, he would still meet much opposition regardless, thus illustrating how one simply can't please everyone.
There is an implicit and logical progression in Heidegger's line of thinking, when it comes to speaking about the difference between Being and beings, and of the seemingly generative ability of Being to perdure the relationship it shares with beings, and how this ontological difference is, at the surface, the most general of differences spanning from the existential difference, that is, the difference between the self and the other; to the essential difference, that is, the difference between the human being and other modes of being; all the way to the ontological difference, that is, the difference between Being and beings.
While Heidegger hardly if at all invests any length of discussion into the first two differences, it is very clear that these differences are indeed a logical progression, and that the onto-theological constitution of metaphysics is, in some ways, a fairly succinct illustration of the third difference, the ontological difference. Heidegger himself does not make note of these three differences, but this is where Hans Un von Balthazar comes into the picture both as a continuation of Heidegger's work and as a critique of what Balthazar perceives to be Heidegger's shortcomings in his refusal to truly address the question of the deity rather than to merely discuss it in such brute terms as “causa sui”, or such sterilized vocabulary, as “Zeus”.
As such, Balthazar elucidates on the three differences as metaphysical distinctions, and subsequently attempts to make the apparently logical leap that Heidegger, by his refusal, never made: the leap into a fourth difference, the difference between being and Beings together and God. In adding this fourth distinction, the question, “why is there something rather than nothing?” Becomes less a question on what is, but rather, a question on that it is. In adding the dimension of God, Balthazar turns his focus away from a moribund journey towards death in Heidegger's mortality, to one of love and joy in Balthazar's natality.
For Balthazar, there is love and joy because we all came into existence without having done anything to merit such an existence. While it's obviously impossible to do something, let alone something worthy of existence before even existing, it cannot be denied that all of us who exist, exist out of the goodness of God. As such, we are born in love and joy, a priori to whatever circumstances we may be thrown in, such as poverty or political strife. In making a categorical stake on a good and loving God, Balthazar steps beyond but also criticizes Heidegger, but still works mostly within the same framework. For Balthazar, the now fourfold distinctions sum up the economy of metaphysical distinctions: from existential to essential to ontological and finally, to the theological difference.
Balthazar takes umbrage to Heidegger's refusal to take the step into the theological distinction, instead insisting on dwelling only in the ontological one. This is because Balthazar believes that Heidegger's own reflections give rise to the inevitability of coming to this conclusion, that it is a logical and sensible leap to make from the third distinction, and from entertaining notions of the deity in “The Onto-Theological Constitution Of Metaphysics”. Heidegger's non-committal, almost begrudging, assent to the necessity of a brute causa sui that is heavily emphasized as nowhere near the anthropomorphic Judeo-Christian God, is, for Balthazar a tremendous deficiency that he sought to address, and looking at Balthazar's metaphysics, his enterprise is unsurprisingly relentless in stressing the importance of the theological distinction.
With all these objections to Heidegger, Balthazar expounds on the notion of God's love as freely given to all beings, who are all undeserving of such a boon, and for no reason whatsoever. This unconditionality of making something that is even though it could very well not have been is the very crux of Balthazar's call to a metaphysics whose starting point is natality. After all, is it not a comforting thing to know that no matter how bad our life may turn out to be, we were still given a life despite the fact that we never earned it at all to begin with? In Heidegger's framework, this is absurd and unthinkable: we were thrown into this world. Balthazar's vocabulary is a far more optimistic one, and it is only possible if the fourth distinction is established, because the fourth distinction precludes the existence of a loving God, and as such, it is a logical assent to make that our existence came from His goodness.
This contrast between Heidegger and Balthazar may seem like night and day, but in truth, they approach radically similar goals, albeit from different starting points. Because Heidegger's starting point is the human person's mortality, man's thrownness and fall, he enjoins thinkers to not fall into calculative thinking: to attempt to represent Being as if it were merely a being, in order to be faithful to what Being would reveal itself to be. Because Balthazar's starting point is natality, being born in joy and the presence of a loved one, he stands against the objectification of Being and insists on a loving God as the source that connects Being and beings, and in doing so, Himself relates to Being and beings, all the same. In each case, they object to the tendency of thinkers to trivialize Being or to undermine the relationship of Being and beings, and in doing so, despite their different starting points, they are striving for practically the same thing. To paraphrase a song, they are “letting Being be”, rather than attempting to frame it in a limited scale, and they are simply imploring others to let Being reveal and conceal itself on its own accord, which is unthinkable especially for the modern age where everything is objectified.
Balthazar's attempt at expanding and transcending Heidegger's framework is tempting to characterize as no longer characteristic of an onto-theological constitution of metaphysics insofar as it appears to be fully theological, and with little to no regard for the ontological aspect of the matter. To say this is to merely be caught up in the most general of ideas about Balthazar's enterprise and is unfair to what he has endeavored to accomplish. Balthazar's fourfold distinction, while very blatantly theological in its grounding of a loving and generous God, does not lose sight of ontology, if only for the fact that like Heidegger, Balthazar is attempting to discourage calculative thinking and the objectification of Being. Through this, the ontological distinction is still given importance, and is not at all ignored.
Balthazar's metaphysics is onto-theological because as an ontology, Balthazar has allowed God to be the conceptual framework to investigate beings, and as theology, Balthazar obviously characterizes God as the highest, and ultimately, as the source for both Being and beings, and their relation to each other as well. It is a point of interest to note that Balthazar actually makes the effort to still work within Heidegger's own enterprise, and in doing so, allows those who are familiar with Heidegger see the logical steps he is taking in asserting a fourfold distinction characterized by an onto-theological constitution of metaphysics.
As a professional magician who regards himself to be a “broker” of wonder in what can be characterized as a jaded and cynical world, I take consolation in the leap Balthazar has made from the ontological distinction into the theological distinction. Heidegger's brute reality, his causa sui, as necessary as it might be, does not lend to the wonder that can be found in a loving God who allows what need not be actually be. In Heidegger's own words, the causa sui is not a god one can fall to his knees in worship for, or can sing psalms of praise for, simply because Heidegger's god is a god of necessity, whereas Balthazar's God is a God of generosity. This distinction is a very important one to make between the two because this is precisely why Balthazar believes that Heidegger was wrong for remaining solely in the ontological distinction rather than making the leap to the theological distinction.
There is much to wonder about a God who gives when He does not need to, while there is hardly any need to consider a god who is only there because he must be there as a primary cause. It is easy to take the latter for granted, after all. In Balthazar, I find the kindred spirit of one who leaves much open in choosing to make the fourth distinction, for while Heidegger is indeed an advocate of openness, it cannot be denied that he is severely limited in his refusal to tackle certain issues for the sake of remaining open to either possibility. In Balthazar's assent to a loving and generous God, we find the possibility for a hopeful wonder not only in what is absolutely necessary, but even in what is contingent. Balthazar's efforts allows us to stand still, dumbfounded, and ask, “How could that possibly happen?!?” And appreciate after all has been said and done that it simply did, and it was simply a boon that it was, when it very well could not have been.
There is a point to be made in making a turn into an abbreviated discussion on magic here. In this loving and generous God precluded by Balthazar's fourth distinction, we find the Reason for the absurd: what could be more absurd, after all, than giving the ultimate gift, that of existence, to the myriad beings who certainly never achieved anything to merit such a gift to begin with? When magic attempts to make the absurd plausible, it is, in its own limited way, attempting to approximate the abundant generosity of God, rather than scheming to pull the wool over the eyes of an unsuspecting audience.
Whenever a magician can make the audience momentarily question the limits of the abilities of the mind, or suspend their disbelief in his repeated breaches of the laws of nature, Balthazar's onto-theological metaphysics permeates the very enterprise of the craft: mundus vult decipi. The world invites deception. Let us not immediately cast stones here because ironically, the “deception” of the craft, in its call to wonder and openness to surprises, in its call to the absurdest of the absurd, is far closer to Being than the boxes we attempt to put Being in when we attempt to objectify it can ever hope to be.
As such, Balthazar's metaphysics can be adjudged as onto-theological, and in fact, closely following the very onto-theological framework Heidegger himself has laid out. It is in this subscription to the absurdest of the absurd, a loving and generous God, that Balthazar has given a hopeful outlook to the relationship of Being and beings, from one of thrownness and fallenness to one of abundance and love, because the Source of this relationship Himself is abundant and loving. It is with this optimistic sense of wonder that we find ourselves allowing Being to come-to-presence and conceal itself all at the same time in joy and love, rather than in morbid curiosity of a being who is assuredly moving towards death. This is not to say that Heidegger's enterprise is worthless: to say that is plain ignorance. Quite simply, Heidegger's enterprise, like his god of necessity, was, to a great extent, a necessary component for Balthazar to build upon for his fourth distinction to truly have great merit.
Tuesday, September 11, 2007
I actually did well for my midterms in Mr. Calasanz's class in advanced metaphysics!!!
I can't believe it!
.:Tomorrow, Destiny Will Unfold.:.
Tomorrow is going to be the day that the Sandiganbayan passes judgment on the drawn-out and extremely volatile case of former president Joseph Estrada.
Will hoping for a "guilty" verdict make me a supporter of the Arroyo administration? Not by any means, which is why I hope that we get a guilty verdict for a man who has exacerbated the rich-poor divide by turning his personal battle with Arroyo into a class battle.
And when we're done with this, one can hope that we can round up the other rotten people in this country who deserve to be punished all the same for their role in this insurmountable schism among people.
I wish I could write at length about this, but I'm really pressed for time at the moment...
Monday, September 10, 2007
... is by far the most challenging class I'm handling.
.:One Of My Classes...:.
... ended up being a wee bit too fixated on cups. I swear, the youth and their raging hormones... ::whistles innocently::
Finally learning how to use a longsword for Monster Hunter 2. Now, I just need to learn how to use Hunting Horns, Hammers, and ranged weapons. Aside from those, everything else has been peachy.
... When's the next big thing? x_x ^_^
... Is the reason I'm posting like this.
Well, after having given them ample demonstrations, it looks like I'll be doing a little something come the comicon for Talecraft. I've developed a mentalism finale that will suit their cards just fine, so I'm glad I have this opportunity.
Now, all I really need is to develop a proper story that I can use, and I'll be all good to go, for sure.
I can't believe how short my blogging has been lately! Blame work and Monster Hunter Freedom 2 for that, I guess, because that's what's been eating up most of my time lately.
.:Missing My Beloved...:.
I'm a bit sad I haven't been seeing her long enough lately... truth be told, she's had lots of free time, but I'm the one who's almost eternally occupied, sadly...
.:Guys, Guys, Guys...:.
... could you let up on teasing you-know-who? She doesn't appreciate the attention much...
.:Work Is Burying Me!:.
I'm bushed. I really am. Lots of stuff happened, and last I remembered, I was doing, of all things, a substitute class for P.E. for one of my three favorite classes!
I swear, that just really made me freeze for a moment.
I'm no slouch, but I'd be the last guy you'd expect to teach P.E. class, so I was really amused that I ended up doing substitution over the weekend, to say the least.
Now, time to get off the computer for a bit because I *really* should be recording papers already... gah.
Sunday, September 09, 2007
Friday, September 07, 2007
How's the blogosphere lately? I've been so busy with work, I wouldn't know where to begin to catch up already!
Expect this trend to keep up for quite a while, where I'd only have one or two substantial posts a week, sadly...
Hung out last night with Nomer and Jake, and the ideas we've been exchanging have been awesome. The fact that the three of us had an inclination for mentalism really made for an interesting discussion that evening, so I was really happy about how things have been turning out.
Anyways, lots of stories were swapped, and there were oodles of comedic moments as well.
Wednesday, September 05, 2007
Ever since the whole Wowowee Hoopla, I've been less and less enamored with the state of Philippine television.
Now, while I am a very GMA-centric kind of guy, I don't think there was any intent to cheat on the part of Willie Revillame, as far as the 2 million goes. For all we know, it could've been a plain "mechanical glitch", as they claim, and you know what? It's anyone's right to call that out on their own time if they wanted to.
Joey de Leon made some snide comments about the matter, but as the video will show you, not once, on his show, did he mention Willie's name. Willie was nowhere nearly as charitable, as he launched into a diatribe against Joey, repeatedly mentioning his name, and channeling his anger at the Eat Bulaga host.
Joey had a very simple reply to Willie: explain before you complain.
Shortly afterwards, a gag order was issued by the MTRCB on both parties just so they wouldn't have to continue taking potshots at each other, and thank God for that. We don't need any more of this mess, so let's leave it at that, and let the proper avenues investigate the matter further.
Whether or not there was an intent to cheat, this so-called mechanical glitch is inexcusable on national television, the stage where, to paraphrase Willie, "nagpapaligaya siya ng mga tao". What kind of enjoyment and fun do people get from a segment where two million pesos was on the line, and the outcome was highly questionable?
Quite frankly, before Willie cries his crocodile tears, he should stop lashing out at people calling him out on his blunder, and instead focus on the issue: after issue after issue after issue hounding his show, why does he never learn?!? Why turn the attention from the blunder to Joey de Leon, who was expressing his view without even resorting to mentioning Willie's name? The obvious attempt to sweep things under the rug by changing the real issue of the matter is alarming.
But now that the issue has blown over and all concerned sides have aired out their views, then let the investigation run its course, and prevent something like this from happening again? It's bad enough we condone this mendicancy on national television, but do we have to screw even these people out of it through sheer carelessness, regardless of intent?
So fine, the investigation is running its course, can we now politely ask the Senate and the Lower House to step away from the proceedings? The problem with some of these people is that in an effort to make a name for themselves, they'd rather just go ahead and throw the whole lawmaking task of their office and instead do "investigation in aid of legislation", which is little more than an opportunity for grandstanding and jockeying for renown and higher political positions in due time.
Let the DTI or the MTRCB, or Hades, if needed be, even the DOJ handle this. Let both houses of Congress do their job instead.
.:And Even More Reason Why I've Been Hating Philippine Television Lately...:.
From the TV show entitled, "Mga Mata Ni Anghelita" (The Eyes Of Anghelita):
Dapat gawing santa si Anghelita! Si Mother Teresa wala namang ginawang milagro nuong buhay siya pero ginagawa siyang santa!
(They should make Anghelita a saint! Mother Teresa never did any miracles when she was alive, and yet they're making her one!)
I don't know about you, but this line just reeks of tastelessness. I can't even begin to explain how annoyed I am just now...
Tuesday, September 04, 2007
My Beloved and I spent little more than fifteen minutes together, but it's all good... I'm glad she dropped by SEC today, as I really feel happy I got to see her even if only for a short while... =)
.:Long Tests Next Week!:.
Hopefully, my students will be ready. This is not going to be easy, but I don't intend to make them fail at all. I just want them to start thinking out of the box, because I believe that's necessary for them to really excel.
Monday, September 03, 2007
Makes me want to lose myself
Makes me want to lose myself
In your arms
There's something in your voice
Makes my heart beat fast
Hope this feeling lasts
The rest of my life
If you knew how lonely my life has been
And how long I've felt so low
If you knew how I wanted someone to come along
And change my life the way you've done
Chorus: Feels like home to me
Feels like home to me
Feels like I'm all the way back where
I come from
Feels like home to me
Feels like home to me
Feels like I'm all the way back where I belong
A window breaks down a long dark street
And a siren wails in the night
But I'm alright 'cause I have you here with me
And I can almost see through the dark there's light
If you knew how much this moment means to me
And how long I've waited for your touch
If you knew how happy you are making me
I've never thought I'd love anyone so much
Feels like I'm all the way back where I belong
Met up with my Beloved for lunch and hanging out today, and I must say that it was just a wonderful time spent with her, to say the least.
My Beloved has been more patient than ever with me, and for that, I can't be grateful enough.
Last Saturday was the first time I took part in a Parents-Teachers Conference, and I must say that it was very interesting to say the least.
To protect the identity of my students, I won't mention any names, but let's just say that the whole gamut of requests was practically run past me, although I am glad that I got along well with most of the parents, and it was definitely a good, engaging time with most of them. Truth be told, I was really just glad to find the opportunity to meet some of the parents, and they have been very encouraging, and the students have been telling them about that other thing I do lately... so yes, there was also a bit of mentalism.
Well, it was a pretty great day, and hopefully, I continue on this fairly good trend of getting along with my students and their parents...
Well, Estelle actually had her birthday last August 20, but despite that, she had her party last Saturday night, and it happened in RJTV bar. It was a laugh and a half, particularly since there were two magicians and a stand-up comedian in the festivities, and I must say that performing over-the-head with a confederate really slays your spectator.
That being said, I'm glad Estelle had fun at her party. I brought my A-game there, and I'm glad to hear how Jay has been complimenting me on the stuff that I've been up to. I had a similar congratulatory note from sir Bing last time I dropped in on him, so that has definitely made my day...
Apparently, my presentation style is so lively and engaging that my actual skill is of little relevance to the show already, since they're almost more interested in what I have to actually say! =P
.:Sunday Was Loaded...:.
Well, it was loaded in that I ran into some tournament players. I didn't even know there was a tournament yesterday, so I was just glad that I got to hang out with some people.