Sunday 30 January 2011

Having a waffle on R4

Top stuff. Incisive, rigorously argued points following a close reading of the available texts on the Ordinariate and attendance at the recent ordinations at Westminster Cathedral. Mm, well no, just a few, 'I'm rather perplexed and not sure how this is all going to pan out,' coupled with a very luke warm welcome from that lady from Roehampton this morning.

Personally, I think everyone I know could have spoken on a range of subjects from the chickens in their back garden to their favourite James Bond film, via the roadworks in Sidcup, in a way that would have held an audience's attention more.

Still, now she's given her imprimatur to moaning on about the Ordinariate, that only served to prove that being welcoming and enthusiastic about it is the way to go. Oh, and the fact that the Pope wants it to happen.

Thanks for the steer.

PS A transcript appears here on The Ordinariate Portal. What most struck me as I listened, aside from the boredom, was how this sounds if you are an Anglican thinking about joining The Ordinariate. The liberal media are after you, QED, time to join.

Saturday 29 January 2011

When maybe some drugs would work

This week's GCSE fun involves teaching this, without the cartoon, which maybe raises the aethetic level, I'm not sure.

Miss Leutgeb read the text book out and the biographical details contain a picture of Moby next to a little cartoon - his tag - incitement to graffiti? We read that during a thin patch he, 'he lived in an attic with no heat or water.' A 20thC artist's garret. One boy said, 'Did the people downstairs know?' I'm so glad we did the Schoenberg in September.

Anyway, we now move to slightly cynical exam mode. This will be dead easy to learn a list of points about and reel off an essay.

It's a waste of a Set Work as my serious drummer and guitarist pointed out to me. 'Why aren't x,y, and z on the syllabus?' they asked. Why indeed?

The best bit is when club dance music is defined, pointing out that at a club one does not go to dance a galliard or waltz. Just where do you go to dance a galliard this side of the 16thC?

My favourite bit of the song is definitely that bit of interference left on one of the samples, which the class found hilarious...every time.

Saturday 22 January 2011

Mark scheme mirth

It is customary to read about the amusing things that pupils write in exams, but sometimes the humour is from the exam board.

Thus Edexcel render twice as 'two times.' Two times what?

'This extract will be played two times.'

At the end of the GCSE Mock this week several boys wanted to check various answers and to avoid having to justify why I am right and they are wrong, even though that is manifestly always and without exception the case, for I am nothing if not an autocrat in my own classroom, I got out the helpful mark scheme. I do this with the syllabus too, treating it like a legal document or perhaps the rules of the game. This is a boys' school after all.

The mark scheme tells you what's right, what's wrong and for the whole of Section A has a column proclaiming, 'accept phonetic spelling.' So, once we'd established what the descending version of the Indian rag was and that no, it had not been transposed down a tone to avoid accidentals, it had been transposed to annoy people with perfect pitch, we then turned to answer, 'From which section of the piece does this music come?'

Answer, gat, helpful hint, 'Accept phonetic spelling.'
They thought that highly amusing.

Once, twice, thrice...

Next year IGCSE. Written for people abroad in standard English.

Monday 17 January 2011

Fr Keith Newton

Ordinariate supremo speaks here.

Well worth a listen. Bats back all the iffy questions very graciously.

Sunday 16 January 2011

Blessed John Paul II

In other news, of course, Blessed John Paul II is to be beatified on May 1st, which in England will be the Sunday of the double Bank Holiday weekened for the Royal Wedding. That's slightly interesting because Prince Charles had to postpone his do with the Duchess of Cornwall to get to Pope John Paul II's funeral, but I digress.

It does all seem quick, but maybe in the miserable West with our shortening attention spams we need things to happen faster. He'll be the first, maybe only, person I've ever seen in the flesh to be beatified, which is quite a thought and I know several people who actually met him.


is how my Grandmother would have described yesterday's ordinations in Westminster Cathedral.

She did witness a large group of Anglicans being received into the Catholic Church in the wake of the vote to ordain woman to the priesthood in 1992.

She and my aunt had popped off to what they thought was going to be a quick Saturday Evening Mass. Quite a while later they returned having stumbled into something else. Hungry but happy as they say.

I love the commentaries that say it's all a bit rushed. From the outside it looks to be running to a measured but very purposeful timetable. Announcement of the Ordinariate, Papal Visit and Beatification of Newman, these latest receptions and ordinations with other people to follow. And the ones that go on about the lack of money, buildings..., no they've just got the important things sorted out.

Certainly, judging by the huge number of people there yesterday along with the very enthusiastic responses from so many people and the documentation from Rome and the statement of Cardinal Levada ending with the Pope's Apostolic Blessing and the name and the patron, anyone wondering what to do has been given several very welcome shots in the arm

As I have said before, by the summer holidays I want a few more places I can go to Mass.

Saturday 15 January 2011

Congratulations and welcome

to the three priests ordained today who will spearhead the Ordinariate of Our Lady of Walsingham.

Hope there's a good bun fight going on in Westminster right now.

Catholics can be friends of the Friends of the Ordinariate by signing up here.

Tuesday 11 January 2011


The sign of peace. I'm not moving from where I'm standing, but if you are either side of me, behind or in front, I'm not ignoring you. If someone smiles at me across the Church at that moment, a muted nod and a smile, but nothing that encourages anyone to go on a Billy Connollyesque world tour of the church, I hope.

I've seen so much that is so much worse, I'm not having a breakdown about a hand shake. I find bidding prayers much more excruciating. You can't blame people for the sign of peace, we get told to do it after all. I'd much prefer it wasn't there, but there we are.

Anyway, I now have to remember not to kneel down for the Sanctus and the Agnus Dei in the OF Mass, but wait until afterwards.

Too much to remember...

Sunday 9 January 2011

Of Mice and ...

From Mac.

It's a mystery to me too. It must be playing the end of Mahler 1 - bells up and hand (paw) out of the bell. In which case, where are it's six missing friends to make up the rest of the section?

PS Anyone else want to send me a pic? Saves having to think of anything to write about.

Friday 7 January 2011

Epiphany cuisine

Provided by my creative cookery correspondant and eaten...yesterday.

Monday 3 January 2011

Climate Change alert

Just in from my correspondent in Llandudno. The traditional Christmas Day camel ramble from Colwyn Bay Zoo along the prom in Llandudno.

Notice how the snow stays on the pavement even when it's melted on the Great Orme.

Good to see St John's Ambulance in attendance lest the camel lose its footing.

Snow, such a difficult surface compared to sand.

Saturday 1 January 2011

Happy New Year

Blwyddyn newadd dda!