I will be at Montreat, NC for an Inklings Conference during next week. I am a bit apprehensive about having wasted my money, as sitting and listening for hours is difficult for me and the Thursday program runs 9-5 with an hour for lunch and then another 75 minutes in the evening. Even Wednesday and Friday look lengthy to these eyes. I prowl restlessly at the back of church as it is and still remember sitting agonisingly in classes as a lad, sometimes even sending my brain away to daydream or count into the thousands to distract my mind from the tedium. It is a rare speaker who can hold me beyond 20 minutes.*
I had hoped to blast out to meet Grim for a beer in Asheville (I think we are equidistant - 30 minutes - from opposite directions) but I am not getting out until 8:15 Wednesday and Thursday, and I no longer push late into the evening. (I've got your email and may give you a try if I decide to skip one of the evening programs, Grim. I'll give notice after scouting out these folks during registration.)
I am not in the Inner Ring of Lewis people (ironic that there are people who clearly enjoy being in the Inner Ring in light of his essay on it), but such is the stuff humans are made of. Still, I know enough of them that there are a full dozen I would like to meet, led by Devin Brown who is a professor at Asbury where my sons went, and only three, maybe four, I hope not to get trapped with. Those are, unsurprisingly very much Inner Ring people who love talking about having had tea with Walter Hooper and the like.
If I absorb anything worth mentioning I will certainly mention it.
*Even the exceptions prove (the word means test in that context, not the silly idea that a counterexample actually reinforces a theory. Think proof as in alcohol, or "proving grounds," or "the proof of the pudding is in the eating." [And now you have a second correction of a common idea that the saying is 'the proof is in the pudding.']) the rule and uphold it. When I went to overnight six-week advanced studies one summer in high school we had 3.5 hours of math every morning and lots of homework. I was enraptured and had the grade of Superior for weeks 1&2. Weeks 3&4 I hit Satisfactory. But by then I was obsessed with a girlfriend, was playing in an impromptu band in chapel, and had secured a role in "Lysistrata." And was diagramming plays for the 6-man flag football intramural with other slackers. And playing in BASIC to devise a program that wrote poetry. (The mind grew where the brain withdrew was the best line out of hundreds.) Weeks 5&6 you can imagine. I had Unsatisfactory grades, figured I had to rally for the final, and did eventually pass. We did not know what ADHD was at the time, nor that OCD should be classified as an anxiety disorder. BTW, I have counted to 10,000 a few dozen times in my life when I have been in situations where I had to be in place. That's three hours, and usually occurred after a couple of hours of daydreaming proved insufficient. I fixed it. I can now daydream about five hours, especially if I am walking or driving. So even when things are fascinating I have limits, and that's not good. Yet that's why you come here, isn't it, because I not only write about the subjects that fascinate you, but throw in a few others that you have at least passing interest in. I'd say it was a Smörgåsbord, but that is usually repetitive, with 4M versions of herring and salmon and lutfisk, followed by ham and potatoes, followed by small amounts of fruit, cheese, and nuts. It sounds like a lovely variety but is mostly just herring and salmon, but you don't notice because of the quantities of aqvavit, snapps, and glogg you have consumed. Hey, the footnote is longer than the post! There was a recent novel that did that, sci-fi maybe, where whole chapters were footnotes. Cool idea but it would make me crazy.
Shockingly, it's actually 1.5 hours to Asheville from here no matter which of the three routes you take to get there. You wouldn't think, looking at the map, that you could travel for 1.5 hours and still be in NC starting as far west as Asheville; but in fact, in these mountains, the going is slow and the roads are indirect due to ridges and rivers.
I'm there occasionally all the same, and my wife's work is on display in the Asheville Gallery of Art. It's right across the street from my favorite bar in Asheville, Jack of the Wood.
I shouldn't recommend podcasts by Dan Carlin, then--unless being able to turn them off and do something else for a while makes a difference.
I listened to a couple and decided they weren't for me.
In the novel Cosmic Banditos, there were footnotes to some of the footnotes. Do those use the square of the actual wordcount for length?
I think I'd really enjoy going to the conference, but I won't get the chance to find out this year. I hope you enjoy it!
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