Wednesday, June 27, 2007

Summer Games

Kick the Can:

One of the fondest memories I have from when I was a kid was playing Kick the Can! The basic principle of the game we played was to kick the can. This game usually involved a group of 10+ people. One person would stand near the can (which was usually a ball of some sort). They would close their eyes and count to 30 while everyone else scattered. If you were of the scattered, your mission was to sneak up and kick the can before you were seen. If the person guarding the can noticed you, they would jump over the can/ball and yell “over the can on Bleach”. Or, “Over the can Billy”. Or, “Over the can on David Letterman”. Since we were childhood friends. If you were “over the caned”, you were placed in can jail. If someone managed to kick the can, everyone in jail would be allowed to scatter again. If everyone was captured, then the first person caught became “it”. This game was a freaking blast. I remember playing for hours. A lot of time we would be forced to stop because it was getting dark and people could no longer see to “over the can” your ass. Did any of you ever play this game growing up and if so, did you have different rule variations?

Sharks and Minnows:

This game was played in the pool. Usually in the deep end. One person was in the middle of the deep end and the other 5-7 kids were standing on the side. The goal was to swim from one side to the other without getting touched by the shark If you were touched, you became a shark. This game was fun considering there is sometimes nothing to do in the pool. There is only so many times you can bust your face on the ladder yelling “Marco”. There is also only so many times you can pass out trying to hold your breath for 2 minutes. There is also only one time you can tie yourself up with rope, from one of those circle life saver things, and jump in the deep end exclaiming to everyone that you are an escape artist and will make it out alive. Yes, I actually did this.

Water Fights:

The water fights we used to have were epic battles that turned boys into men. I have decided that the description of our water fights needs to be an entirely different blog involving schematics and a lot of imagery. I assure you it will put to shame any water fight you ever thought of having.

The End:

I hope you have enjoyed these two summer games. I am going to really make an effort to blog more frequently. This blog has really not had enough fresh content this year. This is because I had both of my hands cut off by this gas powered toenail clipper. They have been surgically reattached and my typing skills are back. Have a good 4th of July!

Tuesday, June 19, 2007

Abbey of Gethsemani

This past weekend I took a trip down to the Abbey of Gethsemani located in Trappist, KY. My pop had been to this place on retreats in the past and he thought that I may like to have the experience. The Abbey is most well known for a monk by the name of Thomas Merton who lived there. Thomas Merton became a pretty well known author and there are tons of books about him and by him. Needless to say the trip did provide me with some insights into my soul but those insights are really for me alone. This blog will be more just my general observations of what this place is like.

Here is the monks daily scheduled. First of all, they are in church 8 times a day, starting at 3:15AM.

3:15 am Vigils
5:45 am Lauds
6:15 am Eucharist
7:30 am Terce
12:15 pm Sext
2:15 pm None
5:30 pm Vespers
7:30 pm Compline
7:45 pm Rosary

From 8:00 in the morning until 12:00, The Monks work. They make cheese and fudge and sell it via direct mail to support the Monastery. From 12:00 - 4:00 they may choose to do more work, read a spiritual text or pray. One thing they may not choose to do is watch TV. Never. I said Never. They do however read newspapers and have access to the internet. They use these mediums to keep up with what is going on in the world and to know what to pray about. After the 7:45pm Rosary the monks go to bed. They then get up and start there day all over again. Here is a picture of them from the website.

These are the monks while they are in church.

These type of monks live by the "Rules of St. Benedict". These rules include the vows the monks take (chastity, poverty, etc..) as well as the fact that they offer an area for retreat. The rules state that their Monastery must have a retreat house where people may come to spiritually regroup. The Retreat house is very nice. It is basically like a motel. The retreat house and the Monastery are joined via the chapel. There are signs all throughout the place that state "Silence is spoken here". You are expected to not speak in most areas of this place. There is a whole lot of just be-ing.

When we arrived they informed me that I would be staying in the monks wing instead of in the retreat house. The monks wing does not have AC and they share a restroom. Pretty similar to a college dorm. When we asked the monk that checked us in why my dad got a room in the retreat house and I got a room in the monks wing, he said "Maybe it is prophetic". I assure you that I could not achieve in many more lifetime the level of dedication to spirituality these men have attained.

There is not really to much more to say. If you are interested in the place I suggest to check out the website. I can't really say what I did because I did a lot of nothing. If you all have any questions about the place I will do my best to answer them. Peace.

Who links to me?