A Haiku of Ending

tick tock tick tock tick

Another year now gone by

Regret things undone?


The Data Doesn’t Lie

I searched for a bit and finally found my Blogging Year in Review.

Hint: it’s accessible from the classic dashboard / stats page.

Let’s take a look, shall we?

The WordPress.com stats helper monkeys prepared a 2014 annual report for this blog.

Here’s an excerpt:

The concert hall at the Sydney Opera House holds 2,700 people. This blog was viewed about 10,000 times in 2014. If it were a concert at Sydney Opera House, it would take about 4 sold-out performances for that many people to see it.

Click here to see the complete report.

I’m assuming you took the time to scroll through the summary.

For me, several things stood out:

I love the comparison of my blog to the Sydney Opera House.

I wonder if they’re playing Wagner this year?


But they do have a performance of La Boheme, so there’s that . . .

My most popular post on my most popular day was A Most Interesting Man?

I would have thought it’d be . . . well, I don’t really know what. But not that one.

I only wrote 68 new posts?

Well, I suppose I did have a months-long blogging sabbatical.

I’m not going for a post-a-day, either.

Eh, I can live with 68.

Wait. This can’t be right. My most viewed posts are all from last year?

How did that happen?

Ok, the one about Monty Python I can understand; it was Freshly Pressed, after all.

I suppose those things get passed around.

But my number one viewed post is still that blasted You Can’t Name a Pig Napoleon?

I think that was the first post I ever wrote for this blog.

It was an exercise, an attempt, a throwaway piece of information.

Why are people still reading this?

No, WordPress, I won’t write more like this.

Except when I do.


People were directed to my blog from various and sundry websites, so I suppose that’s a good thing.

I wonder about the buttons – for – website dot com, though.

Nice to see some global representation, too.

I know I have a few readers in the UK and Germany, but I didn’t know about Canada.

Sorry, Canadians.

As for my commenters, it’s no surprise to find my wonderful blogging friends

vivachange77 (aka the Crone Chronicler)

Phil the Philosopher Mouse of the Hedge

Kathleen R. of Lehrer Werkstatt

stormy1812 (Stormy Musings)


Really, without these – and all other commentators – this blog just wouldn’t be the same.

Who knows what 2015 will bring?

Let’s find out . . . together!

Achievement Unlocked

Custom PS3 Trophy


I’ve written before about my love for Lebkuchen (here and here).


Lebkuchen from Mom


Mom sent Lebkuchen for my birthday.

Or maybe Christmas.

The two tend to run together.

Either way, it’s Day’s Bakery Lebkuchen.

Just as good as I remember.


Lebkuchen from Mom in Law





Mother-in-Law found Lebkuchen at the commissary.

She told Mr. Tom.

She/He/They bought me a bag for Christmas.




Let the Lebkuchen-Festival commence!

Lessons and Carols

Lessons and Carols CandlesPerhaps you have never heard of a Lessons and Carols service.

From Wikipedia:

The first Festival of Nine Lessons and Carols at King’s College, Cambridge, was held on Christmas Eve in 1918. It was conceived by Eric Milner-White, the Dean of the College, whose experience as an army chaplain had led him to believe that more imaginative worship was needed by the Church of England. The order of service was adapted from the order created by Benson for Truro Cathedral 38 years earlier, based on an idea from the future Bishop of Edinburgh, George Walpole . . .

The format of the first Festival of Nine Lessons and Carols did not differ substantially from the one known today. The order of the lessons was revised in 1919, and since that time the service has always begun with the hymn “Once in Royal David’s City” . . .

The Nine Lessons, which are the same every year, are read by representatives of the college and of the City of Cambridge from the 1611 Authorized King James Version of the Bible . . . The singing is divided into “carols” which are sung by the Choir of King’s College, Cambridge, and “hymns” sung by the Choir and congregation . . . The service ends with the hymn “Hark! The Herald Angels Sing” . . .

If you have never attended a Lessons and Carols service – or, if you are unable to attend one or find a broadcast – I would like to provide one for you.


 Lessons and Carols Candles 2FIRST LESSON

Genesis 3:8-19

8. And they heard the voice of the Lord God walking in the garden in the cool of the day: and Adam and his wife hid themselves from the presence of the Lord God amongst the trees of the garden.

9. And the Lord God called unto Adam, and said unto him, Where art thou?

10. And he said, I heard thy voice in the garden, and I was afraid, because I was naked; and I hid myself.

11. And he said, Who told thee that thou wast naked? Hast thou eaten of the tree, whereof I commanded thee that thou shouldest not eat?

12. And the man said, The woman whom thou gavest to be with me, she gave me of the tree, and I did eat.

13. And the Lord God said unto the woman, What is this that thou hast done? And the woman said, The serpent beguiled me, and I did eat.

14. And the Lord God said unto the serpent, Because thou hast done this, thou art cursed above all cattle, and above every beast of the field; upon thy belly shalt thou go, and dust shalt thou eat all the days of thy life:

15. And I will put enmity between thee and the woman, and between thy seed and her seed; it shall bruise thy head, and thou shalt bruise his heel.

16. Unto the woman he said, I will greatly multiply thy sorrow and thy conception; in sorrow thou shalt bring forth children; and thy desire shall be to thy husband, and he shall rule over thee.

17. And unto Adam he said, Because thou hast hearkened unto the voice of thy wife, and hast eaten of the tree, of which I commanded thee, saying, Thou shalt not eat of it: cursed is the ground for thy sake; in sorrow shalt thou eat of it all the days of thy life;

18. Thorns also and thistles shall it bring forth to thee; and thou shalt eat the herb of the field;

19. In the sweat of thy face shalt thou eat bread, till thou return unto the ground; for out of it wast thou taken: for dust thou art, and unto dust shalt thou return.

[Continue to Second Lesson]

Pages: 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9

My Christmastime Quest

The best things in life require effort.

Lebkuchen, for instance.

lebkuchen bar and bear
Pictured: Lebkuchen not from Day’s Bakery

My hometown of Honesdale, Pennsylvania is semi-famous for two things: the Stourbridge Lion and “Winter Wonderland.” It should also be famous for the wonderful lebkuchen from Day’s Bakery. Their wonderfully soft and spicy bar-style lebkuchen is simply divine. And when the crunchy glaze cracks and begins to melt in your mouth . . .

Unfortunately, they don’t ship. At least, their website doesn’t offer shipping and I haven’t heard back from my email. I could ask family to send me some, but things of that nature tend to get “lost in the mail” – if you know what I mean.

I tracked down a recipe that sounds like it might be similar to my culinary fantasy, but the ingredients proved to be cost-prohibitive.

If only I had a German delicatessen

The stores in my area don’t even sell a boxed variety, the smaller, crunchier lebkuchen set on oblaten. Rumor has it that the commissary sells some sort of lebkuchen, but I’m not in the military. I have friends who are, though, so maybe I can call in a favor or two.

Now if only I could find some Moxie to go with it . . .

A Rant about Music


Many of my students suffer from the delusion that any time before the present day was “boring.”

You didn’t have internet? or cell phones? What did you do?

I used something called imagination. It’s nearly extinct, but you can see traces of it here and there . . .

In my experience, they find music the most tedious. Why? I don’t really know. Perhaps it’s because enjoying older styles of music takes work. Gregorian chant, polyphony, opera, and classical music all require effort, something today’s One Direction-crazed teenyboppers or Selena Gomez-infatuated prepubescents just aren’t willing to do.

Music? Effort? It took a whole minute to download this song, and now you want me to think about it?! I don’t think so, old man . . .

But music from days gone by simply isn’t boring. I get that you don’t like it, but it certainly isn’t boring.

Case in point:


Rejoice, rejoice! Christ is born
of the Virgin Mary – rejoice!

The time of grace has come—
what we have wished for,
songs of joy
Let us give back faithfully.

God has become man,
With nature marveling,
The world has been renewed
By Christ reigning.

The closed gate of Ezekiel
Is passed through,
Whence the light is raised,
Salvation is found.

Therefore let our gathering
Now sing in brightness
Let it give praise to the Lord:
Greeting to our King.

Did you even hear that tune?!

How on God’s green Earth is this boring?!

It’s not. That’s the point.


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