26 September 2010


Well, I wore my bowtie today: I consider any day I wear my bowtie a success. But it's getting colder in the UK and soon, I sense that it will snow. Snow us in.

Yoko's singing group was singing at the baby dedication of one of its members today, at a church run by a missionary couple from Tennessee, the guy looking sort of like Ted Haggard. Yoko warned me about this earlier in the week and I was wary, but she promised a potluck lunch. Being that I am now trying to eat less and eat better, the potluck lunch didn't really have that much of a pull for me, but what are you going to do.

I should take a step back, a step that brings me on to the scale this morning, where I came in at 74.2 kgs. My weight loss over the last two weeks to just over a kilo, down from weekly losses of around 1.3 kgs for three weeks or so.

You'll notice the blue line is starting to get less steep, which is the goal. I want it to come down to 74, but that means in the next seven days, I will have to start eating the number of calories that I am burning everyday. I'm easing up to it now, getting close to 2,500 kCals three times this week. It should be an interesting experience. 2,700-3,000 kCals a day? What will that be like.

Anyway, I digress. So Tennessee Baptist church in Milton Keynes. Yoko's group sang and we sent the girls to the nursery. Now that Naomi is going to school, I thought she could make it in the real world from now on. So we sent them off and I listened to the sermon that was given, not from the guy from TN, but an English dude involved in an organisation that the church is a part of.

It's funny listening to a sermon from the other side: they are just propositions built on assumptions. The assumption underlying this one was 1) it's obvious there is a god because we are here, and 2) because it's obvious there is a god, it is also obvious that he provides us with everything we need. Objection presented: well, god doesn't provide everything to everyone — what about the people dying in Pakistan? Answer: that's a political problem — the problem isn't the lack of food, it's man. Man's the problem. The preacher also took a swipe at Richard Dawkins (okay, he's an asshole, fine) and Stephen Hawking... Stephen Hawking, the wheelchair-bound Cambridge physicist who can't speak without the aid of a computer? Yes, apparently whatever newspaper article this preacher read about Hawking's new book cast him as anti-god and, therefore, anti-thankfulness. Richard Dawkins, I get, but Stephen Hawking? Come on now.

God's got a pretty good gig in Christian theology. Whenever anything goes right, he gets the credit. Whenever there's a problem, it's man messing up his master plan.

This church is also quite patriarchal, something which is quite jarring to me now, more so than when I was younger. We need more men in the ministry. God send us more men. Really? We're not over that yet?

After the sermon, some silly praise music and a minute of reflection with our eyes closed (I wonder what this potluck is going to be like), the potluck came. I sat with the Japanese folks, enjoying my privileged position between cultures and feeding Naomi ham. I didn't eat too much, and when the puddings came out, I managed to only have a bit of cake, a single marshmallow dipped in chocolate, and some fruit. It was successful.

I came home to my Birmingham payment and an expense payment from the OU in my bank account and a fresh carafe of coffee. I am now making coffee three times a day on the weekends: I don't think that this is too much. I'm actually certain that it's not. The house is cold, but it is a perfect, grey Sunday afternoon. I'm listening to The Album Leaf, free of entanglement. Although deconstructing what has power over you is hard and it's a long road out, I gotta say, I'm happy to be done and I have no desire whatsoever to go back. There is so much more to life than simple propositions and faith.

I have my French final on Wednesday. I have faith that it will be fine.