Wednesday, June 29, 2005


With a few days left until the Big Move West, and with items and such in boxes, life is pretty slow and uneventful at the soon-to-be-former PP domicile. Plans for a phalanx of pretty pedantic Protestanttes [i.e. a gaggle of girlie groupies] to keep me happily occupied have not borne the intended fruit.

So what does one do with a few days left? Besides writing a post complaining about being bored, one could do the following:

(1) Point out that the whole triumphalistic "we have a community of interpretation" line of both Roman Catholics and Reformed Catholics is a bunch of triumphalistic hooey.

(a) There is no guarantee that a "community" will get things correctly.
(b) No criterion is made by the triumphalistic claimant by which we can objectively distinguish "good" communities from "bad" communities.
(c) For Roman Catholics, the existence of their magisterial community is the very crux of the argument that a good Protestant [who is not caught up in a warm mushy ecumenism] has with them, so once again, Romanists are content to deal with what we consider a counterfeit currency.
(d) Overlooked is the fact that no good Protestant reads the Bible in a vacuum. When I'm stuck, for example, I don't sit around waiting for the Holy Spirit to illuminate my inner self. Instead, I consult the appropriate reference works, commentaries, grammars, treatments on syntax, etc. I may even call up a seminary professor or a wise old pastor and bend his ear. I could state that the authors and scholars behind these aforementioned reference works form my "community."
(e) Overlooked is the truism that the text means what it says, and given that the people who write about the necessity of a community in interpretation somehow think that individual readers of their blogs can understand their posts while sitting alone in front of a screen, the Biblical texts should also be extended the same courtesy.

If pointing out triumphalism doesn't cure the boredom blues, one could

(2)Point out that those who teach elementary and intermediate Greek shouldn't be so quick to attempt to play the authority game whereby they make themselves the Greek authority, lest they ruin their argument with their foolish bluster. See Eric Svendsen's site and his "Extensive Response to the Hypersacramentalist." The sad part for Professor Owen is that I'm sympathetic to his position, though I'm not sympathetic to his short-guy syndrome, and, given his rather short publication record [which is shorter than mine so far as I know, and, on top of that, it is much easier to get published in humanities-related fields than it is in the sciences], he really shouldn't expect people to be in awe of his great scholastic output. Also, for what it is worth, a doctorate in a humanities-related field isn't much to brag about anyway. If he has a good argument, it can stand on its own.

If this doesn't work, it seems that one could

(3) Go the health club and play basketball for hours per day to pass the time. This would seem to work. Back in the 1980's, when a 6' guy of modest speed and jumping ability still had a chance to make an NCAA D-II college roster as an 11th or 12th player --- a benchwarmer and practice player, probably nothing more than that --- being able to hit a third of one's shots from behind the arc allowed one to achieve a reputation of being a great perimeter shooter. By the end of college, when I was working for money and the benchwarmer dream was sacrificed to the exigencies of getting into graduate school [it seemed a safe bet that the NBA wasn't going to call], I was in peak shape, and pretty deadly from the perimeter with a quick catch-n-shoot release that developed out of necessity from being only 6'.

But what do we see now? A slow white guy in his 30's who can still shoot, but, alas, everybody else can shoot now too, as the three-point arc being close to 20 years old and the young guns have grown up with it as a given. Whereas outside shooting was the province of we shorty six-footers who dared not go in among the trees, now everybody shoots from the outside. Big guys used to stay in the key, and now they shoot from outside just like we wee ones. Hitting 40%+ from behind the arc is still nice, but it doesn't justify one's existence anymore. Throw in the fact that now I'm slow [and overweight] and I can no longer feel as if I'm anything but a role player, with a very limited role at that. [Mainly, hit my open outside shots in the rare events that they arise and distribute the ball quickly to those who are open.]

On top of that, in the last twenty years the athleticism of young people has just exploded. At my club, it isn't unreasonable for a 6' person to be able to dunk without too much strain. The "fast" high school players who show up today are faster than I remember the "fast" guys back in the 80's. On top of that, they shoot just as well as many college players. Back in the late 80's and early 90's, I felt I had a strong edge over quicker and taller high school players, but now when I'm isolated one-on-one with them the look of panic on my face is noticeable. In short, the good high school players today seem to be as good as the college players of twenty years ago.

Oh, by the way, I've been in a shooting slump as well, so perhaps I should leave this depressing subsection of the thread and turn to the observation that

(4) Christians who look to the Republican Party as some sort of objectively good thing are being played like a piano. On a personal level, I can understand and sympathize with Christians who vote Republican on the basis of something like "they're not that good, but they're still better than the Democrats." This is an objectively true statement. What I can't understand is this rallying cry for the Republicans on the basis that, as compared to be relatively better than the Democrats, they're somehow objectively good. Here's the PP ultra-brief "take" on things:

(a) Big Government: R's have expanded government and its role.
(b) Private Property: R's don't seem to be particularly enamored of this concept.
(c) Abortion: a Republican-majority Supreme Court couldn't overturn Roe v. Wade, thereby sending the matter back to individual state legislatures.
(d) Taxes and Regulations: businesses are still crippled by regulatory rules, having to devote much time and money to forms and compliance work for the federal government. As for taxes, how can the R's say they stand for limited government when they go along with an agenda that necessitates most people having to have 20-50% of their incomes confiscated? In my part of the woods, we call that SOCIALISM.
(e) Drug Prohibition: most Republicans support the idea of locking somebody up who peacefully uses certain substances, even if that person is not a threat.

This is just a brief list.

It will be interesting to see what Christians do if somebody like Giuliani gets the Republican nomination in 2008. What excuses for voting for him then will be proffered?

If this doesn't cure the boredom, I could instead follow Centuri0n's tongue-in-cheek suggestion and

(5)Attempt to drum up readership by being much more provocative.

Here's an attempt at provocation by an admitted novice:

Hey Catholics: You're a bunch of Biblically illiterate Romanist idolators!
Hey Reformed Catholics: You're a bunch of psuedointellectuals!
Hey [insert Catholic apologist here]: Get a real job and stop asking for money!
Hey Atheists: Jesus Saves!
Hey PoMo's: Your purported scholarly writings require the same intellectual rigor as does popping bubble wrap!
Hey James White: You're a narcissistic perpetual victim whose favorite topic is himself! In that regards, you're like Dave Armstrong!
Hey Eric Svendsen: You're a radical sectarian gnostic!
Hey New Yorker: Jets suck, Yankees suck, Knicks suck.... [a Peter Griffin reference]

And so the list could go, but, in the end, it just ain't me. I suppose the PP will have to live in its richly deserved obscurity.

Since I'm relatively conflict-averse, passing the time with (5) is out of the question. The muse must suggest yet another thing. Ah, she is alive! --- and suggesting that I

(6) Review Biblical Hebrew. No thanks. Right now, re-memorizing roots and patterns of dots and dashes just doesn't sound "sexy." Next suggestion, please.

That certainly didn't work! I suppose I could instead gripe that

(7) Phil Johnson never blogspotted me. And to think that I never once made any comments about large pastors who wear Hawaiian about a wasted feat of self-control!

Although the possibilities for overcoming boredom that were enumerated above have their own appeal [apart from (6)], I think instead that I'll do the most natural thing: hop into my non-descript automobile, lower the windows, fluff the fuzzy dice hanging from the rear-view mirror, dust the Dashboard Jesus, blast some Bach organ music, and cruise for chicks. Yes, that will do the trick!


Blogger centuri0n said...

Crybaby. Phil Johnson has you linked on his front page under "Entertaining", just like me. That's like complaining that you didn't get a cookie at the last go-round at the china buffet.

As for saying James White plays the victim card ... d00d, it's your funeral.

Last thought for the day: Christian epologists don't get groupies. Especially when the worst they can do on short notice against Catholics is "You're a bunch of Biblically illiterate Romanist idolators!"

Wednesday, June 29, 2005 10:01:00 AM  
Blogger Pedantic Protestant said...

I'll say it again, Frank: boo-hoo.

I assume you're being tongue-in-cheek with your second paragraph.
You can tell him that the PP is the shizzle, and he'll get served if he tries to match my smooth urban moves.

How's that for on-the-spur trash talk?!

You sort of remind me of the Emperor: "Let the anger flow through you!!"


Wednesday, June 29, 2005 12:43:00 PM  

Post a Comment

<< Home