Tag Archives: St. Maria Goretti

7 Quick Takes on Grammar, My Favorite Saint, and My Favorite Band

7 Quick Takes, hosted at This Ain't the Lyceum

— 1 —

I have a new grammar pet peeve. It turned up several times on completely different websites I was reading yesterday. It’s the word “as” when used as a correlative conjunction without its other half. Correlative conjunctions are phrases which must use both parts in the same sentence to make a comparison.

I lost not only my wallet but also my whole purse.

You can choose either chicken or fish.

Whether he walks or runs, he’ll be late.

You can’t use one part of a correlative conjunction without the other. This real example was the last straw for me:

*After downloading the app on my iPhone, I simply logged in and immediately had access to download as many pictures at once from my [Pinterest] boards.

“As many” as what? As many as you could? That’s pretty circular. As many as you wanted? That’s great! As many as you had time for? Then how long is a complete download going to take?

This goes right up there with comma splices and then/than in my Contemporary Grammar Hall of Shame.

— 2 —

I am a card-carrying member of the Apostleship of Prayer. I also get the monthly e-newsletter with links to the reflections for each month. I don’t like the new content of the email (there’s basically nothing in it except a link to the actual information, which is on the website), but I did like this month’s reflection questions for the evangelization intention:

What are some ways that “the light of the Gospel” can be brought “into public life, into culture, economics and politics” without being rejected as the imposition of religion on non-believers?

Those are quotations from Pope Benedict from the Aparecida meeting in 2007. It’s an interesting question to consider, and it’s basically the story of my life outside the parish grounds. How do you preach the Gospel at all times? (Don’t attempt to quote St. Francis to me. He was a preacher! He found words pretty necessary.)

— 3 —

My week was pretty quiet. I didn’t get a project done on Monday like I wanted to, but I did get my book finished for this week’s ATX Catholic review, so that was pretty good.

I’ve also been working on finding a diagnosis for a specific health problem I’d rather not discuss now except to ask for your prayers. I don’t take very good care of my physical health, so it’s especially challenging for me to work on something that has not been a quick fix.

— 4 —

The feast of my favorite saint, Maria Goretti, was this week! I almost missed it. I have electronic reminders set up for all kinds of things, but somehow I forgot to set one to start my novena. Even my Weekly Review failed me. Then I missed a day somewhere and wound up really far behind. I prayed all nine days’ worth, though, and it gave me some time for reflection on my spiritual life.

St. Maria Goretti is usually known as a patroness of chastity, but she’s gaining a reputation as a patron of mercy as well, particularly in this Year of Mercy. I am especially drawn to her courage and fortitude. I don’t know if I could forgive the guy who just tried to rape and murder me, whether he was about to succeed in the murdering part or not. I don’t know if I could resist the attack for the sake of his soul. I don’t know if I could actually risk death for what I believe in. Could you?

— 5 —

I read a little bit of the Bible every day by way of Night Prayer and Evangelio del dia. It just occurred to me that the latter absolutely counts as the spiritual reading I feel guilty about never doing. Why didn’t I realize that before? I love it when things double-count! (Well, except for that one time with the Immaculate Conception, I guess.)

— 6 —

Switchfoot’s new album is out today! I know, nobody actually buys music anymore these days, but they’re my favorite band. My blog went viral when I reviewed a concert of theirs, I met Jon Foreman and he said he liked my upcycled shirt, and they are the only band besides *NSync I have ever seen in concert. (And I am not ashamed.) So I bought it. I might even text them to say how much I like it.

Yep. And then:

That is so punk rock.

— 7 —

That’s it for this week. Here’s a picture of a Corgi doing yoga (or maybe pilates?)

For more Quick Takes, visit This Ain’t the Lyceum.

7 Quick Takes on How to Find the Beat and How Not to Miss the Company Meeting


— 1 —

I wrote last week’s takes long before I published them, so I wasn’t able to include my most recent dance intro because it hadn’t happened yet. I took a friend to Newcomer Night several months ago to learn a sprinkling of Foxtrot and Jitterbug. Last week, I took a different friend to refresh my Salsa and learn a sprinkling of Bachata.

She got there a little late, so I had to leap right into the Bachata lesson. By listening, I was able to pick up that all I’d missed were discussions of walking steps versus triple steps. NBD. It was relatively easy to reprogram my brain for Bachata since that started by moving side-to-side (whereas West Coast Swing and Two-Step move mainly backwards and forwards).

— 2 —

I also learned that I should stop taking beginning Salsa lessons. I think that was my fourth overall. I have a total of three moves, but I am a pro at those three moves! If I get some extra cash, I might dip into Salsa 1 at my studio. It meets right before my regular West Coast Swing class. Maybe that’s not a coincidence.

— 3 —

My company has a quarterly, off-site, all-hands meeting. They are scheduled at the beginning of the company year in February, but our COO usually sends a reminder email about two weeks in advance. You know the kind: “Be there. If you think you can talk your way out of it, you have one week to do so.”

This time, we did not get that reminder. If I hadn’t overheard one of my project managers talking to my old boss about it in the hallway, I would have forgotten completely—and I don’t think I would have been the only one. It worked out in the end, but I have little doubt that if I hadn’t been cubicle eavesdropping, I would have been sitting at my desk, happily typing away, when people started leaving for the meeting.

The moral of the story: always look ahead on your calendar.

— 4 —

I’ve been learning to dance West Coast Swing for a few months now, but (of course) I can only dance it with someone who can lead it. In the course of my Internet research (you are not surprised that I do research), I found a video showing probably the easiest dance on planet Earth that is not the middle school sway.

See? Even if you think you can’t dance, you can probably learn to do that, especially to something with a strong, thumping bass. DJ Snake songs are some of my favorites to dance WCS to, actually. The beat drops, and all is well.

— 5 —

The creator/author of the previous video, James Joseph, also has one on how to find and count sets of 8. I used to play instruments, so that’s second nature for me. I have actually physically stumbled when someone starts on 2 or 6 because I can feel in my body how unnatural that is.

James Joseph makes a point I have yet to see anywhere else: all dance teachers expect you to know how to find and count beats of music, but none of them teach you how to find and count beats of music. In their defense, they’re not music teachers. Yet you must know how to find 1 if you’re ever going to learn to lead a dance to music. When your teacher kicks you out of the nest and says, “Here’s some music; start on your own,” you must fly!

If you know me in real life, I can help you learn this. I have rhythm and a teaching degree (in English, but it’s more broadly applicable than that).

— 6 —

Dennis, Nell, Edna, Leon, Nedra, Anita, Rolf, Nora, Alice, Carol, Leo, Jane, Reed, Dena, Dale, Basil, Rae, Penny, Lana, Dave, Denny, Lena, Ida, Bernadette, Ben, Ray, Lila, Nina, Jo, Ira, Mara, Sara, Mario, Jan, Ina, Lily, Arne, Bette, Dan, Reba, Diane, Lynn, Ed, Eva, Dana, Lynne, Pearl, Isabel, Ada, Ned, Dee, Rena, Joel, Lora, Cecil, Aaron, Flora, Tina, Arden, Noel, and Ellen sinned.

That is a palindrome. Mind. Blown. Courtesy of Grammarly.

— 7 —

I was so excited about this last week that I forgot to blog it: the relics of St. Maria Goretti are coming to the U.S. this fall. She is my absolute favorite saint. I pray her novena every summer. Her relics have never been brought to the U.S. before, and one of the cities she will visit is just a few hours away from me: Houston.

I don’t really believe in coincidences, but I do believe in small miracles. I just happened to be living in the perfect region to fairly easily see Pope Benedict when he visited the U.S. I won’t be able to see Pope Francis in Philly, but not taking the time and money to do that will enable me to take the time and money to do this.

Really, what more could I ask for?

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