Well, That Was Unexpected

Real life is stranger than fiction...depending on which authors you read, of course.

Friday, October 10, 2008

Reunion with Camlin! and ...the Shack, but not the love shack, the badly written Shack.

Okay, I'm back in black.

Had a FANTASTIC time with Campbell and Linda and Lamont. I love that we can get back together and be just as easy as if we had seen each other last week. Camlin is a hilarious couple to be around. We got to see the ORTV kids for yummy chinese lunch, and then Campbell chose to go to Medieval Times

for his birthday dinner, and until the end of october it is adults pay kids price, so we took advantage of that. yes, there was lots of eating of roasted chicken with our hands! wearing of paper crowns, cheering for our ultimately beheaded knight, and lots of embarrassed looks by linda who was as mortified to go to medieval times as if she found out the event would be videotaped and re-played on her high school gymnasium wall. you have to embrace your inner dork! i have some priceless photos. if i ever find the connection that links my camera to the computer, you shall see them too. this would require me being home long enough to search for said connection. but that won't be happening for at least the next two weeks when i will be in Virginia Beach and Cincinnati. oh glorious.

So my latest chill obsession is the free Pray As You Go Podcast which is put out by Jesuits in England--I presume, since everyone has English accents. Anyway, my daily devotional life is variously full of monks chanting, rad accents reading le Bible, and gentle, prodding spiritual questions. you can download this conduit of quiet contentment on itunes.

am reading The Shack. am alternately horrified by the terrible quality of the writing and intrigued by certain theological premises--mainly, how can you trust God or believe God is good after something unspeakable has happened to your child. the writer desperately needs an editor. Everytime he uses the word Papa, I want to vomit. The dialogue is so contrived I have sometimes have the urge to fling the book out of my hands in disgust. however, I can see how this could be a revolutionary book if you had very fixed images of how God should be. I have tried for a while to train myself against imagining God a certain way and have tried to let God be as big as possible, transcending any fixed human classifications of gender, race or age, when i pray or conceptualize, so that concept wasn't new, but i can see how it might expand ones mind if they hadnt. but the matrix had a black woman as God too, and more compelling. It's a fictional book, and the story is sort of compelling if poorly and sentimentally written. but i am at a part where he has transitioned into full blown theological dissertation which he puts forth more like a condescending theology class than a novel, issuing forth from the mouths of his characters. i find that nearly intolerable. am (very mildly) offended on multiple fronts, literary and spiritual. this is a way of avoiding real critique of your theological viewpoints by putting them in the form of fiction. "it's just a book, it's not real," but yet he tells it in a way that shows you he assumes you should think the same things and that if you havent you simply are not spiritually evolved enough to be at that place yet. hmm. i feel like i want to call eugene peterson and ask him what he was thinking when he so heartily endorsed this book. i'm perplexed by his comparison to pilgrims progress. anyway, i need to plough through, i hear there will be some surprises at the end, and like i said, i want to see how this dude reconciles victim and crime.

must end on a good note--one of the most wonderful stories in my vicariously lived life. My mom and Lauren went to the Fluevog store to get my mom's first pair of Fluevogs (mom was visiting little Lauren for a fun weekend.) And JOHN FLUEVOG himself was in the store and he signed my mom's shoes. and since they were also picking up a pair i had requested...he signed mine too! oh happiness. he also threw in some free adorable bags that will be great for grocery shopping and have some words about grooviness on them. anyway, i will also take a pic and upload it. and while ironic that i, who am celibate with fluevogs, have never seen john fluevog and my novice mom and sister got to see him, is not mattering. it was a great story, there was much squealing and excitement when they told me. and i have autographed fluevogs. so exciting.


Blogger Rachel said...

I also disliked The Shack very much. I skimmed the second half of the book because it just left me with a bad taste in my mouth.

Have you read "Left To Tell" yet about the Rwandan genocide? I highly recommend it.

5:17 AM  
Blogger Amy said...

Yay for time with CamLin! Loved your commentary about poor Cam's birthday dinner, lol.

Interesting thoughts on The Shack! I'd just heard people say they liked it or it was thought-provoking or whatever; good to get a writer/editor's perspective. ;) (Very curious now to check it out for myself! Though from what you and Rach said, I doubt I'll be able to do more than skim.)

10:35 PM  
Anonymous Gabe said...

first off, i should read your blog more often. you're too enjoyable :)
about the shack. my main beef was literary - mack loses his personality while he's at the shack. in it's place is a Q&A session that's insulting to a believer's intelligence. on the other hand, i can understand why people take "shack attacks" personally. if the real Mack's story is indeed true, his daughter's story is one that SHOULD make us angry, a.k.a. you can't toss the baby out with the bathwater. i just haven't decided yet if his choice to let his friend tell her story with poor prose is justified or exploitative.
ps - remember these?

11:34 PM  

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