Daily Archives: March 19, 2006


Painting mostly finished, except Dawn does a little touch up around the light switch and outlet below. We’ve bought new ceramic covers for the outlets and switch, so those go up. I completely unplug all peripherals from the computer, so as to then be able to empty the desk, to install new glides on the bottom of the desk, since one glide went missing like 3 moves ago. Then we put up new curtain rods and curtains. Boy is the room cute.

Happy Birthday, um, Iraq War?

I’m a little unsure as to how to date the beginning of the war. Wikipedia pegs 20 Mar 2003 02:30 UTC, with explosions being heard in Baghdad, as the beginning. That’s 5:30 a.m. local Baghdad time, so UTC and Baghdad time both put it on 20 March. But that’s also 9:30 p.m. EST, which is my time, Washington DC time, the White House and Pentagon time.

In either case, today is Sunday, which is major op-ed day here in America. And today we see major, and really rather competing, pieces in the New York Times and the Washington Post on this most august anniversary. The Post has Donald Rumsfeld, who writes, “The terrorists seem to recognize that they are losing in Iraq.” On the other hand, the Times carries a piece from recently retired Maj. Gen. Paul D. Eaton, formerly the commanding general of the rebuilding of the Iraqi armed forces and security forces. Says he, “Defense Secretary Donald Rumsfeld is not competent to lead our armed forces.”

Third Sunday of Lent

The OT reading is from Exodus. It’s the Ten Commandments. Seems like usually, when a reading has brackets to indicate a short version, we still get the long version. But today we actually get the short version. It still covers all ten, but just little more briefly.

I have at home these really fun finger puppets, one of Brahma and one of Kali. When Gloria reads the the second commandment, about carving idols, I wonder if my finger puppets count as idols. I’ve also got lunch boxes, one with Krishna, another with Ganesh. They’re less idol-like, but they do have visual representations of Hindu gods. Do they count?

Then the Gospel is from St. John where Jesus drives the moneychangers from the temple area. I remember being a kid and arguing with other kids, at Sunday school probably, about whether Jesus was committing some sort of sin in this scene. We of course believed that Christ was wholly without sin, but we wondered how you could chase guys around with a whip of cords sinlessly. Surely you’d have to be breaking at least one of the commandments? I probably argued that I’d feel like I was if I chased you around with a whip. But we could never figure out which commandment that would be breaking.

As an adult now, I go along more with what Christ tells us in St. Matthew, where “You shall love the Lord, your God, with all your heart, with all your soul, and with all your mind. This is the greatest and the first commandment. The second is like it: You shall love your neighbor as yourself. The whole law and the prophets depend on these two commandments.” Not worshipping false idols, not killing, not stealing? Bah, that’s the easy part. Loving God with heart, soul and mind? That’s the hard part, folks. And then loving my neighbor as myself? Hard too.

But, then again, Christ also tells us, again from St. Matthew, “Do not think that I have come to abolish the law or the prophets. I have come not to abolish but to fulfill.” So we’re not off the hook for the commandments really. But the New Testament adds like two more. Or one and a half. Or something.