Wednesday, March 29, 2017

Project BLACK MAMBA: Lent

'Tis the festival of Saints Gwladys & Gwynllyw, Hermits (circa 450-500, A.K.A. Gladys & Woolos the Bearded): Saint-link Her & Wikipedia-link Her, Saint-link Him & Wikipedia-link Him.

Commentary: Wayback Machine. The parents of the abbot St. Cadoc the Wise (25 September).

'Tis also the festival of Blessed John Hambley, Priest & Martyr (circa 1560-1587), martyred in the reign of the queen Elizabeth I, one of the Eighty-five Martyrs of England & Wales: Martyr-link & Wikipedia-link; Wikipedia-link LXXXV.

Scripture of the Day
Mass Readings
The Book of Isaiah, chapter forty-nine, verses eight thru fifteen;
Psalm One Hundred Forty-five, verses eight & nine, thirteen(c,d) & fourteen, & seventeen & eighteen;
The Gospel according to John, chapter five, verses seventeen thru thirty.

Commentary: Lenten Gospel reflections: Franciscan Media & Word on Fire.

Individual Reading
The Letter to the Hebrews, chapter ten (verses one thru thirty-nine);
The Letter to the Hebrews, chapter eleven (verses one thru forty).

Commentary: One Sacrifice instead of Many (10:1-18) & Recalling the Past (10:19-39); V. Examples, Discipline, Disobedience: Faith of the Ancients (11, inclusive).

The Rebel Black Dot Irish Song o' the Day


The Pogues, "The Body of an American" from The Best of the Pogues (The Last Angry Irishman)

Commentary:
"The Cadillac stood by the house
And the Yanks they were within,
And the tinker boys they hissed advice,
'Hot-wire her with a pin!'
Then we turned and shook as we had a look
In a room where the dead man lay.
So Big Jim Dwyer made his last trip
To the shores where his father's laid.

"But fifteen minutes later we had our first taste of whiskey,
There was uncles giving lectures on ancient Irish history,
The men all started telling jokes and the women they got frisky,
By five o'clock in the evening every bastard there was piskey!

"Fare thee well, going away,
There's nothing left to say,
Farewell to New York City, boys, to Boston and PA,
He took them out with a well-earned clout
And they often heard him say,
'I'm a freeborn man of the U.S.A.!…

"Fare thee well, gone away,
There's nothing left to say,
But say adieu to your eyes as blue as the water of the bay,
And to Big Jim Dwyer, the man of war,
Who was often heard to say,
'I'm a freeborn man of the U.S.A.!
'I'm a freeborn man of the U.S.A.!
'I'm a freeborn man of the U.S.A.!'"

Tuesday, March 28, 2017

The Rebel Black Dot Irish Song o' the Day


Dropkick Murphys, "Captain Kelly's Kitchen" from The Warrior's Code (The Last Angry Irishman)

Commentary: I cannot rightly say if the unknown words of the chorus are in the Irish language or are pleasant rhyming gibberish. I'm not picking on the Murphys, this applies equally to Bing Crosby's famous "Too-Ra-Loo-Ra-Loo-Ral (That's An Irish Lullaby)."
"Come, single guy and gal, unto me pay attention,
Don't ever fall in love, it's the devil's own invention,
For once he fell in love with a maiden so bewitching,
Miss Henrietta Bell in Captain Kelly's kitchen.

"With me toora loora la, me toora loora laddie,
Me toora loora la and me toora loora laddie!…"

Monday, March 27, 2017

The Explorers' Club, № DXLII

Operation AXIOM: The World War
26 March 1917: The First Battle of Gaza—The Desert Column, a British & Imperial force that included A.N.Z.A.C. mounted infantry & the Imperial Camel Corps, assaulted the Turkish stronghold at Gaza, breaching the defenses but withdrawing due to fears of Ottoman reinforcements; British propaganda declared victory, to which the Turks replied, "You beat us at communiqués, but we beat you at Gaza."





Lest we forget.

The Rebel Black Dot Irish Song o' the Day

Flogging Molly, "To Youth (My Sweet Roisin Dubh)" from Within a Mile of Home (The Last Angry Irishman)

Commentary:
"Tell me why must our peace be this puzzle
That fractures this land, splinters war?
The last nail sank the shame on our coffin,
But in the end we must all die alone.

"So it's to youth I sing you this story
And it's of youth I sing it now,
Like the train that derailed without warning,
Some must leave what they left far behind,
So goodbye sweet Roisin Dubh, I say goodbye.

"And the bark fell from tree to ground that now bleeds
On the anguish that never learnt to shoulder,
When the clash of the drum will surrender the gun,
And of this sadness we shall no longer speak.

"Until tank and the bomb but all forgotten songs
That's when I and we will sing again,
So goodbye to my love, my sweet Roisin Dubh,
Goodbye now until we meet again…"

Sunday, March 26, 2017

The Rebel Black Dot Song o' the Lord's Day

Alan Jackson, "Amazing Grace" via iTunes (from Precious Memories, Vol. II) (The Last Angry Man)

Commentary: In this week's Gospel, Jesus cures a blind man, followed immediately by a long questioning of the miracle by the Pharisees. The thematic streak continues!
"Amazing grace, how sweet the sound,
That saved a wretch like me,
I once was blind, but now I see,
Was lost but now am found…"

Saturday, March 25, 2017

The Rebel Black Dot Irish Song o' the Day


Joe Derrane & Carl Hession, "Farrell O'Gara/The Flogging Reel" from Gren Linnet Records: The Twentieth Anniversary Collection (The Last Angry Irishman)

Commentary: What does the above image have to do with the musicians Joe Derrane or Carl Hession, or the reels "Farrell O'Gara" or "The Flogging Reel," or this medley of the two reels by the two musicians? I couldn't say, but the image above was the fourth or fifth result—the very top o' the page—when I conducted an image search for "the flogging reel," looking for on image to accompany this R.B.D.I.S.O.T.D. How delightfully random!

Friday, March 24, 2017

The Rebel Black Dot Irish Song o' the Day


The Pogues, "The Broad Majestic Shannon" from The Best of the Pogues (The Last Angry Irishman)

Commentary:
"…I sat for a while by the gap in the wall,
Found a rusty tin can and an old hurley ball,
Heard the cards being dealt and the rosary called
And a fiddle played 'Sean dun na Ngall.'
And the next time I see you, we're down at the Greeks,
There'll be whiskey on Sunday and tears on our cheeks,
For it's stupid to laugh and it's useless to bawl
'Bout a rusty tin can and an old hurley ball.

"Take my hand and dry your tears, Babe,
Take my hand, forget your fears, Babe,
There's no pain, there's no more sorrow,
They're all gone, gone in the years, Babe.

"So I walked as day was dawning,
While small birds sang and leaves were falling
Where we once watched the rowboats landing
By the broad, majestic Shannon."

Thursday, March 23, 2017

Project BLACK MAMBA: Lent

'Tis the Optional Memorial of Saint Turibius of Mogrovejo, Bishop (1538-1606): Saint-link ūnus, Saint-link duo, & Wikipedia-link.

Commentary: Wayback Machine. Quoth the Holy Redeemer bulletin:
He began his mission work by traveling to Lima on foot, baptizing & teaching the natives. His favorite topic was: "Time is not our own, & we must give a strict account of it."
Quoth the Holy Family bulletin:
Together with Rose of Lima (23 August), Turibius is the first known saint of the New World, serving the Lord in Peru, South America, for twenty-six years. Born in Spain & educated for the law, he became so brilliant a scholar that he was made professor of law at the University of Salamanca & eventually became chief judge of the Inquisition at Granada. He succeeded too well. But he was not sharp enough a lawyer to prevent a surprising sequence of events. When the archdiocese of Lima required a new leader, Turibius was chosen to fill the post: He was the one person with the strength.
'Tis also the festival of Blessed Edmund Sykes, Priest & Martyr (circa 1550-1587), martyred in the reign of the queen Elizabeth I, one of the Eighty-five Martyrs of England & Wales: Martyr-link & Wikipedia-link; Wikipedia LXXXV.

'Tis also the festival of Saint Joseph Oriol, Priest (1650-1702), the "Wonder-Worker of Barcelona:" Saint-link & Wikipedia-link.

Scripture of the Day
Mass Readings
The Book of Jeremiah, chapter seven, verses twenty-three thru twenty-eight;
Psalm Ninety-five, verses one & two, six & seven, & eight & nine;
The Gospel according to Luke, chapter eleven, verses fourteen thru twenty-three.

Commentary: Lenten Gospel reflections: Franciscan Media & Word on Fire.

The Rebel Black Dot Irish Song o' the Day


Kevin Burke & Mícheál Ó Domhnaill, "Maudabawn Chapel/The Wild Irishman/The Moher Reel" from Green Linnet Records: The Twentieth Anniversary Collection (The Last Angry Irishman)

Commentary: Another delightful instrumental medley of reels. Research indicates that Maudabawn & Moher are both in County Cavan, in the province of Ulster, on the border 'twixt the Republic & the United Kingdom (Northern Ireland). Research further indicates that I have no clue how to pronounce Mícheál Ó Domhnaill.

Wednesday, March 22, 2017

Project BLACK MAMBA: Lent

'Tis the festival of Saint Avitus of Périgord, Hermit (sixth century): Saint-link & Wikipedia-link.

Commentary: Wayback Machine.

'Tis also the festival of Saint Nicholas Owen, Martyr, S.J. (died 1606, A.K.A. John Owen), martyred in the reign of the king James VI & I, one of the Forty Martyrs of England & Wales: Martyr-link ūnus, Martyr-link duo, & Wikipedia-link; Wikipedia-link XL.

'Tis also the festival of Blessed Clemens August von Galen, Bishop (1878-1946), the "Lion of Münster:" Blessed-link & Wikipedia-link.

Scripture of the Day
Mass Readings
The Book of Deuteronomy, chapter four, verses one & five thru nine;
Psalm One Hundred Forty-seven, verses twelve & thirteen, fifteen & sixteen, & nineteen & twenty;
The Gospel according to Matthew, chapter five, verses nineteen, eighteen, & nineteen.

Commentary: Lenten Gospel reflections: Franciscan Media & Word on Fire.

Individual Reading
Psalm One (verses one thru six).

Commentary: True Happiness in God's Law (Psalm 1). Reading Psalm 1 was my penance from confession—the Sacrament of Reconciliation—yesterday.

Project BLACK MAMBA: Lent — Backlog Edition, Pt. III

Monday, 20 March was the Solemnity of Saint Joseph, Spouse of the Blessed Virgin Mary (first century B.C.-first century A.D.): Spouse-link ūnus, Spouse-link duo, & Wikipedia-link.

Commentary: Wayback Machine. Normally observed on 19 March, St. Joseph's Day was moved so as not to clash with the Third Sunday of Lent. Quoth the Holy Redeemer bulletin:
Christian tradition places Joseph as Jesus's foster father. His important mission in God's plan of salvation was "to legally insert" Jesus Christ into the line of David from whom, according to the prophets, the Messiah would be born, & to act as his father.
'Twas also the festival of Saint Cuthbert of Lindisfarne, Bishop, O.S.B. (circa 634-687, the "Wonder-Worker of England:" Saint-link & Wikipedia-link.

Commentary: Wayback Machine.

'Twas also the festival of Blessed John of Parma, Priest, O.F.M. (circa 1209-1289): Blessed-link ūnus, Blessed-link duo, & Wikipedia-link.

'Twas also the festival of Blessed Marco da Montegallo, Priest, O.F.M. (circa 1425-1497): Blessed-link & Wikipedia-link.

Scripture of the Day
Mass Readings
The Second Book of Samuel, chapter seven, verses four, five(a), twelve, thirteen, fourteen(a), & sixteen;
Psalm Eighty-nine, verses two & three, four & five, & twenty-seven & twenty-nine;
The Letter to the Romans, chapter four, verses thirteen, sixteen, seventeen, eighteen, & twenty-two;
The Gospel according to Matthew, chapter one, verses sixteen, eighteen thru twenty-one, & twenty-four(a);
or, the Gospel according to Luke, chapter two, verses forty-one thru fifty-one(a).

Commentary: Lenten Gospel reflections: Franciscan Media & Word on Fire.

The Rebel Black Dot Irish Song o' the Day


Flogging Molly, "These Exiled Years" from Swagger (The Last Angry Irishman)

Commentary:
"I've heard all yer sad songs I can hear,
It's in with the whiskey and out with the gin,
I've heard all yer sad songs I can hear,
It's another day older in these exiled years…"

Tuesday, March 21, 2017

Project BLACK MAMBA: Third Sunday of Lent

Backlog Edition, Part II
Sunday, 19 March was the Third Sunday of Lent: Lent-link & Wikipedia-link.

Otherwise, 19 March would have been the festival of Blessed Clement of Dunblane, Bishop, O.P. (died 1258): Blessed-link & Wikipedia-link.

Commentary: Wayback Machine.

'Twould also have been the festival of Blessed Anton Muzaj, Priest & Martyr (1921-1948), martyred in the reign of the First Secretary Enver Hoxha, one of the Martyrs of Albania: Martyr-link & Wikipedia-link (list); Wikipedia-link Albania.

Commentary: The priest & martyr Bl. Anton was declared venerable by Pope Francis in April 2016 & beatified as part of the group of martyrs on 5 November 2016.

Scripture of the Week
Mass Readings
The Book of Exodus, chapter seventeen, verses three thru seven;
Psalm Ninety-five, verses one & two, six & seven, & eight & nine;
The Letter to the Romans, chapter five, verses one, two, & five thru eight;
The Gospel according to John, chapter four, verses five thru forty-two;
(or, the Gospel according to John, chapter four, verses five thru fifteen, nineteen(b) thru twenty-six, thirty-nine(a), forty, forty-one, & forty-two).

Commentary: Lenten Gospel reflections: Franciscan Media & Word on Fire.

Mass Journal: Week Twelve
Reflection by Matthew Kelly, founder of the Dynamic Catholic Institute:
The Catechism of the Catholic Church wastes no time in addressing this truth. The opening point of Chapter One, Section One, reads, "The desire for God is written in the human heart because man is created by God & for God; & God never ceases to draw man to himself. Only in God will man find the truth & happiness he never stops yearning for."

Project BLACK MAMBA: Lent — Backlog Edition, Part I

Saturday, 18 March was the Optional Memorial of Saint Cyril of Jerusalem, Bishop & Doctor of the Church (circa 313-386): Doctor-link ūnus, Doctor-link duo, & Wikipedia-link.

Commentary: Wayback Machine. Quoth the Holy Redeemer bulletin:
About the end of A.D. 350 Cyril succeeded Maximus as Bishop of Jerusalem, but was exiled on more than one occasion due to the enmity of Acacius of Caesarea, & the politics of various emperors. Cyril left important writings documenting the instruction of catechumens & the order of the liturgy in his day.
'Twas also the festival of Saint Edward the Martyr (circa 962-978, A.K.A. King Edward), martyred at the behest of the dowager queen Ælfthryth (A.K.A. Elfrida), his stepmother: Martyr-link & Wikipedia-link.

'Twas also the festival of Saint Salvador of Horta, Religious, O.F.M. (1520-1567): Saint-link ūnus, Saint-link duo, & Wikipedia-link.

Commentary: Quoth the Holy Family bulletin:
At the age of twenty-one, he entered the Franciscans as a brother & was soon known for his asceticism, humility, & simplicity. As cook, porter, & later official beggar for the friars of Tortosa, he became well known for his charity. He healed the sick with the Sign of the Cross. When crowds of sick people began coming to the friary to see Salvador, the friars transferred him to Horta. Again, the sick flocked to ask his intercession; one person estimated that two thousand people a week came to see Salvador. He told them to examine their consciences, go to confession, & to receive Holy Communion worthily. He refused to pray for those who would not receive those sacraments.
Scripture of the Day
Mass Readings
The Book of Micah, chapter seven, verses fourteen, fifteen, eighteen, nineteen, & twenty;
Psalm One Hundred Three, verses one & two, three & four, nine& ten, & eleven & twelve;
The Gospel according to Luke, chapter fifteen, verses one, two, three, & eleven thru thirty-two.

Commentary: Lenten Gospel reflections: Franciscan Media & Word on Fire.

Project BLACK MAMBA: Lent

'Tis the festival of Saint Enda of Aran, Priest & Abbot (circa 450-530): Saint-link & Wikipedia-link.

Commentary: Wayback Machine.

'Tis also the festival of Saint Nicholas of Flüe, Hermit (1417-1487, A.K.A. Brother Klaus): Saint-link & Wikipedia-link.

'Tis also the festival of Blessed Thomas Pilchard, Priest & Martyr (1557-1587, A.K.A. Thomas Pilcher), martyred in the reign of the queen Elizabeth I, one of the Eighty-five Martyrs of England & Wales: Martyr-link & Wikipedia-link; Wikipedia-link LXXXV.

Commentary: Wayback Machine.

Scripture of the Day
Mass Readings
The Book of Daniel, chapter three, verses twenty-five & thirty-four thru forty-three;
Psalm Twenty-five, verses four & five(a,b), six & seven(b,c), & eight & nine;
The Gospel according to Matthew, chapter eighteen, verses twenty-one thru thirty-five.

Commentary: Lenten Gospel reflections: Franciscan Media & Word on Fire.

The Rebel Black Dot Irish Song o' the Day


The Pogues, "Thousands Are Sailing" from The Best of the Pogues (The Last Angry Irishman)

Commentary:
"Thousands are sailing across the western ocean,
To a land of opportunity
That some of them will never see,
Fortune prevailing across the western ocean,
Their bellies full, their spirits free,
They'll break the chains of poverty,
And they'll dance…

"Thousand are sailing across the western ocean,
Where the hand of opportunity
Draws tickets in a lottery,
Where e'er we go we celebrate
The land that makes us refugees,
From fear of priests with empty plates
From guilt and weeping effigies,
Though we dance to the music,
And we dance."

Monday, March 20, 2017

The Rebel Black Dot Irish Song o' the Day

James Keane, "Maud Miller/The Sailor's Return/Paddy Murphy's Wife" from Green Linnet Records: The Twentieth Anniversary Collection (The Last Angry Irishman)

Commentary: An instrumental medley, with "Paddy Murphy's Wife" presumably having nothing to do with Great Big Sea's "The Night Pat Murphy Died."

Sunday, March 19, 2017

The Explorers' Club, № DXLI

Operation AXIOM: The World War
9 February-20 March 2017: Operation Alberich—In a planned, strategic maneuver, German forces in northern France withdrew stealthily to the Siegfriendstellung (Siegfriend Position, or "Hindenburg Line"), a series of prepared defensive works along a shorter, stouter front; the Germans adopted a scorched-earth policy in the areas they abandoned, playing into the hands of Entente propaganda.





Lest we forget.

The Rebel Black Dot Song o' the Lord's Day

Sam Cooke, "Jesus Gave Me Water" from Portrait of a Legend, 1951-1964 (The Last Angry Man)

Commentary: The subject of today's R.B.D.S.O.T.D. is the subject of today's Gospel reading: the Samaritan woman at the well. Perfect thematic unity, two weeks in a row! I cannae keep this up much longer, at least not with so little effort.

Saturday, March 18, 2017

The Rebel Black Dot Irish Song o' the Day


Dropkick Murphys, "The Dirty Glass" from Blackout (The Last Angry Irishman)

Commentary:
"Murphy, Murphy, darling dear,
I long for you now night and day,
Your pain was my pleasure, your sorrow my joy,
I fear now I've lost you to health and good cheer…

"Darcy, Darcy, darling dear,
You left me dying, crying there
In whiskey, gin, and pints of beer,
I fell for you, my darling dear!…"

Friday, March 17, 2017

Project BLACK MAMBA: Lent

'Tis the Optional Memorial of Saint Patrick, Bishop (circa 386-464): Saint-link ūnus, Saint-link duo, & Wikipedia-link.

Commentary: Wayback Machine. Quoth the Holy Redeemer bulletin:
There is broad agreement that Patrick was active as a missionary in Ireland during the second half of the fifth century. Early medieval tradition credits him with being the first bishop of Armagh & Primate of Ireland, & they regard him as the founder of Christianity in Ireland, converting a society practicing a form of Celtic polytheism.
'Tis also the festival of Blessed Conrad of Bavaria, Religious, O.Cist. (circa 1105-1154): Blessed-link & Wikipedia-link.

'Tis also the festival of Saint Jan Sarkander, Priest & Martyr (1576-1620), martyred by Protestants for refusing to break the seal of the confessional: Martyr-link & Wikipedia-link.

Scripture of the Day
Mass Readings
Lenten Weekday
The Book of Genesis, chapter thirty-seven, verses three, four, twelve, thirteen(a), & seventeen(b) thru twenty-eight(a);
Psalm One Hundred Five, verses sixteen thru twenty-one;
The Gospel according to Matthew, chapter twenty-one, verses thirty-three thru forty-three, forty-five, & forty-six;

Commentary: Lenten Gospel reflections: Franciscan Media & Word on Fire.

or, for St. Patrick:
the First Letter of Peter, chapter four, verses seven(b) thru eleven;
Psalm Ninety-six, verse three;
The Gospel according to Luke, chapter five, verses one thru eleven.

Commentary: Quoth the missalette from World Library Publications:
During Lent is a memorial is observed by a community, the Collect of the memorial may replace the Collect of the Lenten weekday or be used as the concluding prayer of the Prayer of the Faithful. All other Mass texts, including the readings, are taken from the Lenten weekday. The vesture is violet.
So why the alternate readings for the Optional Memorial of St. Patrick?

The Rebel Black Dot Irish Song o' St. Patrick's Day


Dick Gaughan, "Song for Ireland" from Green Linnet Records: The Twentieth Anniversary Collection (The Last Angry Irishman)

Commentary:
"Talking all the day
With true friends who try to make you stay,
Telling jokes and the news,
Singing songs that pass the time away,
We watched the Galway salmon run
Like silver darting, dancing in the sun…

"Drinking all the day
In old pubs where fiddlers love to play,
Someone touched the bow,
He played a reel, which seemed so grand and gay,
We stood on Dingle beach and cast,
In wild foam we found the Atlantic bass…

"Dreaming in the night
I saw a land where no one had to fight,
But waking in your dawn,
I saw you crying in the morning light,
Lying where the falcons fly,
They twist and turn in your e'er blue sky.

"Living on your western shore,
Saw the summer sunsets, asked for more,
I stood by your Atlantic sea
And sang a song for Ireland."

Thursday, March 16, 2017

Project BLACK MAMBA: Lent

'Tis the festival of Saint Heribert of Cologne, Bishop (circa 970-1021): Saint-link & Wikipedia-link.

'Tis also the festival of Blesseds John Amias & Robert Dalby, Priests & Martyrs (died 1589), martyred in the reign of the queen Elizabeth I: Martyr-link Juliett Alpha & Wikipedia-link Juliett Alpha, Martyr-link Romeo Delta & Wikipedia-link Romeo Delta.

Commentary: Wayback Machine.

'Tis also the festival of Saint Jean de Brébeuf, Priest & Martyr, S.J. (1593-1649), martyred by the Iroquois: Martyr-link & Wikipedia-link.

Scripture of the Day
Mass Readings
The Book of Jeremiah, chapter seventeen, verses five thru ten;
Psalm One, verses one, two, three, four, & six;
The Gospel according to Luke, chapter sixteen, verses nineteen thru thirty-one.

Commentary: Lenten Gospel reflections: Franciscan Media & Word on Fire.

The Rebel Black Dot Irish Song o' the Day


The Pogues, "If I Should Fall from Grace with God" from The Very Best of the Pogues (The Last Angry Irishman)

Commentary:
"If I should fall from grace with God
Where no doctor can relieve me,
If I'm buried 'neath the sod,
But the angels wont receive me—

"Let me go, boys!
Let me go, boys!
Let me go down in the mud
Where the rivers all run dry.

"This land was always our,
Was the proud land of our fathers,
It belongs to us and them,
Not to any of the others—

"Let them go, boys!
Let them go, boys!
Let them go down in the mud
Where the rivers all run dry…"
Sorry, politics again: Though only a part of "If I Should Fall from Grace with God," the song does contain a sad counterpoint to Tuesday's plea for today's immigrants to be welcomed more warmly than were yesterday's Irish immigrants: A strain of Irish Nativism—tied up in the twentieth century at least with republicanism—that took a dim view of "others," including those who had resided in Ireland for centuries, such as the Protestants of Northern Ireland, most of whom have been in Ireland longer than the Irish have been in America. If the far-famed Kennedys & your humble narrator are Americans, some of our ancestors having only arrived in the Americas in the nineteenth or even the twentieth centuries, then how are the men of Ulster not Irish, their ancestors having arrived on the Emerald Isle in the sixteenth & seventeenth centuries? At some point, immigration is a
fait accompli.

Wednesday, March 15, 2017

Project BLACK MAMBA: Lent

'Tis the festival of Saint Zachary, Pope (679-752), ninety-first Bishop of Rome: Saint-link & Wikipedia-link.

Commentary: Wayback Machine.

'Tis also the festival of Saint Louise de Marillac, Religious, D.C. (1591-1660), co-foundress of the Daughters of Charity, formally the Company of the Daughters of Charity of St. Vincent de Paul: Saint-link ūna, Saint-link duae, & Wikipedia-link; Wikipedia-link D.C.

'Tis also the festival of Saint Clement Mary Hofbauer, Priest, C.Ss.R. (1751-1820), "Second Founder of the Redemptorists:" Saint-link ūnus, Saint-link duo, & Wikipedia-link.

'Tis also the festival of Blessed Jan Wojciech Balicki, Priest (1869-1948, A.K.A. Jan Adalbert Balicki): Blessed-link & Wikipedia-link.

Scripture of the Day
Mass Readings
The Book of Jeremiah, chapter eighteen, verses eighteen, nineteen, & twenty;
Psalm Thirty-one, verses five & six, fourteen, & fifteen & sixteen;
The Gospel according to Matthew, chapter twenty, verses seventeen thru twenty-eight.

Commentary: Lenten Gospel reflections: Franciscan Media & Word on Fire.

Liberty & Union

A week ago, the 40 Days for Life sign was stolen out of my front yard: Wayback Machine. There was some suggestion at the time that perhaps the wind, which was wild that day, had taken the sign. I admit that remains a possibility. This morning, the replacement 40 Days for Life sign was stolen out of my front yard, the footprints in the snow dispelling any doubt as to human agency.


One need not agree with my pro-life, anti-abortion stance to agree that I have a right to air my views in a peaceful, non-violent way without trespass & theft by those who hold contrary views. The acquisition of replacement signs is in the works; I will not be deterred by thievery nor by intimidation.

The Rebel Black Dot Irish Song o' the Day


Flogging Molly, "The Kilburn High Road" from Drunken Lullabies (The Last Angry Irishman)

Commentary: Kilburn, a neighborhood in London, is the metropolis's Irish colony, home to many second-generation Irish as well as, even in these latter days, many first-generation immigrants.
"So we're the kings of it all,
The day we were born,
Now we're the kings of the Kilburn High!
Sure we'll always take a drop
And we'll never leave a sup,
Your empty glass is but a tear-filled eye,
We were the kings of the Kilburn High!
We were the kings of the Kilburn High!…"
There is a play, written by the playwright Jimmy Murphy years before Flogging Molly released "The Kilburn High Road," called
The Kings of the Kilburn High Road, made into a motion picture as Kings.

Tuesday, March 14, 2017

The Rebel Black Dot Irish Song o' the Day


Flogging Molly, "Far Away Boys" from Swagger (The Last Angry Irishman)

Commentary: Pray pardon the pollution of these proceedings with politics, but many of the Irish who came to these shores came with nothing more than the clothes on their backs & a willingness to work—& work incredibly hard, in perilous conditions—to give their families a better life than was possible back on the Emerald Isle. 'Tis for the same reason that most Latin Americans, both legal & illegal immigrants, come here to-day. There were Nativists who were vehemently, sometimes viciously opposed to Irish immigration; the Nativist impulse remains with us to-day, as wrongheaded as ever.
"Well, I worked on the railroad
For two pents a day:
I drank down one penny,
The other I saved.
I hammered and hammered,
For God knows how long,
Well into madness,
With each setting sun…

"We buried four workmen,
They dug themselves well,
From four empty coffins
To four early graves.
They're only Paddies, just Paddies,
Don't dig them too deep,
You'll need all your strength, boys,
They're replaced easily…"

Project BLACK MAMBA: Lent

'Tis the festival of Saint Lazarus of Milan, Bishop (died circa 450): Saint-link & Wikipedia-link.

Commentary: Wayback Machine.

'Tis also the festival of Saint Matilda of Ringelheim, Confessor (circa 895-968, A.K.A. of Saxony): Saint-link & Wikipedia-link.

'Tis also the festival of Blessed Giacomo Cusmano, Priest (1834-1888), founder of the "Morsel for the Poor," formally the Congregation of Missionary Servants of the Poor, & the Sisters Servants of the Poor: Blessed-link & Wikipedia-link.

Scripture of the Day
Mass Readings
The Book of Isaiah, chapter one, verses ten & sixteen thru twenty;
Psalm Fifty, verses eight & nine, sixteen(b,c) & seventeen, & twenty-one & twenty-three;
The Gospel according to Matthew, chapter twenty-three, verses one thru twelve.

Lenten Reflection

Individual Reading
Psalm One Hundred Ten (verses one thru seven);
The Letter to the Hebrews, chapter nine (verses one thru twenty-eight).

Commentary: God Appoints the King both King & Priest (Psalm 110); the Worship of the First Covenant (Hebrews, 9:1-10) & Sacrifice of Jesus (9:11-28).

Monday, March 13, 2017

The Explorers' Club, № DXL

Operation AXIOM: The World War
8-11 March 1917: The Fall of Baghdad—British & Imperial forces smashed the Ottoman defenses at the confluence of the Tigris & Diyala Rivers, south of Baghdad; the city itself was taken without a shot & 9,000 Turks were taken prisoner; General Sir Frederick Maude's famous proclamation read, in part, "Our armies do not come into your cities & lands as conquerors or enemies, but as liberators."





Lest we forget.

Commentary: Such are my times & experiences that I cannot read about Baghdad, no matter the historical period, without reflecting, at least passingly, upon the Anglo-American-Australian toppling of Saddam Hussein in 2003, the subsequent bloody years of occupation & insurgency, & subsequent bloody years of chaos that followed the precipitous American withdrawal, which continue still, now fanned into a regional conflagration. We, too, thought we came not as conquerors or enemies, but as liberators.

Project BLACK MAMBA: Lent

'Tis the festival of Saint Leander of Seville, Bishop (circa 534-600): Saint-link ūnus, Saint-link duo, & Wikipedia-link.

Commentary: Wayback Machine.

'Tis also the festival of Saint Nikephorus of Constantinople, Bishop (circa 758-828, A.K.A. Patriarch Nikephorus I): Saint-link & Wikipedia-link.

'Tis also the festival of Blessed Sancha of Alenquer, Religious, O.Cist. (circa 1180-1229, A.K.A. of Portugal): Blessed-link & Wikipedia-link.

Scripture of the Day
Mass Readings
The Book of Daniel, chapter nine, verses four(b) thru ten;
Psalm Seventy-nine, verses eight, nine, eleven, & thirteen;
The Gospel according to Luke, chapter six, verses thirty-six, thirty-seven, & thirty-eight.

Lenten Reflection

Individual Reading
The Letter to the Hebrews, chapter seven (verses one thru twenty-eight);
The Letter to the Hebrews, chapter eight (verses one thru thirteen).

Commentary: Melchizedek, a Type of Christ (7, inclusive); Heavenly Priesthood of Jesus (8:1-6); & Old & New Covenants (8:7-13).

Operation AXIOM: Habemus Papam!
Four years ago to the day, 13 March 2013, Jorge Cardinal Bergoglio, S.J. (born 1936), Archbishop of Buenos Aires, was elected the two hundred sixty-six Pope, "Bishop of Rome, Vicar of Jesus Christ, Successor of the Prince of the Apostles, Supreme Pontiff of the Universal Church, Primate of Italy, Archbishop and Metropolitan of the Roman Province, Sovereign of the Vatican City State, Servant of the servants of God," taking the papal name Francis. The first Jesuit to serve as Pontifex Maximus, & the first non-European since the eighth century, Pope Francis was named Time magazine's Person of the Year for 2013; in the first four years of his pontificate, he has issued two encyclicals, Lumen fidei (written in collaboration with Pope Benedict XVI) & Laudatio si', & two apostolic exhortations, Evangelii gaudium & Amoris Laetitia. Pope Francis was elected to the Chair of Saint Peter, 13 March 2013, four years ago to-day.

To date, there have been no sighting of Pope Francis wearing the three-tiered papal tiara. Drat!

Project BLACK MAMBA: Second Sunday of Lent

Sunday, 12 March was the Second Sunday of Lent: Lent-link & Wikipedia-link.

Otherwise, 12 March would have been the festival of Saint Maximilian of Theveste, Martyr (circa 274-295), martyred in the reign of the emperor Diocletian: Martyr-link ūnus, Martyr-link duo & Wikipedia-link.

Commentary: Wayback Machine. Ancient Theveste is now known as Tébessa, Algeria.

'Twould also have been the festival of Saint Innocent I, Pope (died 417), fortieth Bishop of Rome: Saint-link & Wikipedia-link.

'Twould also have been the festival of Blessed Angela Salawa, Confessor, O.F.S. (1881-1922): Blessed-link ūna, Blessed-link duae, & Wikipedia-link.

Scripture of the Week
Mass Readings
The Book of Genesis, chapter twelve, verses one thru four(a);
Psalm Thirty-three, verses four & five, eighteen & nineteen, twenty, & twenty-two;
The Second Letter to Timothy, chapter one, verses eight(b) thru ten;
The Gospel according to Matthew, chapter seventeen, verses one thru nine.

Mass Journal: Week Eleven
Reflection by Matthew Kelly, founder of the Dynamic Catholic Institute:
The life of Jesus Christ is indelibly engraved upon history; neither the erosion of time nor the devastating & compounding effects of evil have been able to erase his influence. Some people thought he was crazy; others considered him a misfit, a troublemaker, a rebel. He was condemned as a criminal, yet his life & teachings reverberate throughout history. He saw things differently, & he had no respect for the status quo. You can praise him, disagree with him, disbelieve him, glorify him, or vilify him. About the only thing you cannot do is ignore him, & that is a lesson that every age learns in its own way. You can't ignore Jesus, because he changed things. He is the single greatest agent of change in human history. He made the lame walk, taught the simple, set captives free, gave sight to the blind, fed the hungry, healed the sick, comforted the afflicted, afflicted the comfortable, & in all of these captured the imagination of every generation.

The Rebel Black Dot Irish Song o' the Day

Irish Tradition, "Loftus Jones" from Green Linnet Records: The Twentieth Anniversary Collection (The Last Angry Irishman)

Commentary: Is the reel "Loftus Jones" named after Commander Loftus Jones, V.C. (1879-1916), a Royal Navy officer who died in the Battle of Jutland? Loftus isn't the most common given name; so, the peculiar combination "Loftus Jones" being completely coincidence seems unlikely—not impossible, just unlikely.

Sunday, March 12, 2017

The Rebel Black Dot Song o' the Lord's Day

Sufjan Stevens, "The Transfiguration (Home Demo Version)" from Illinois (The Last Angry Man)

Commentary: You get three guess as to the focus of this Sunday's Gospel reading.

Saturday, March 11, 2017

Project BLACK MAMBA: Lent

'Tis the festival of Saint Benedict Crispus, Bishop (died 732, of Milan): Saint-link & Wikipedia-link.

Commentary: Wayback Machine.

'Tis also the festival of Saint Óengus the Culdee, Bishop (died 824, of Tallaght, A.K.A. Aengus; "culdee" meaning hermit): Saint-link & Wikipedia-link.

'Tis also the festival of Blessed Thomas Atkinson, Priest & Martyr (died 1616), martyred in the reign of the king James VI & I, one of the Eighty-five Martyrs of England & Wales: Saint-link & Wikipedia-link; Wikipedia-link LXXXV.

Scripture of the Day
Mass Readings
The Book of Deuteronomy, chapter twenty-six, verses sixteen thru nineteen;
Psalm One Hundred Nineteen, verses one & two, four & five, & seven & eight;
The Gospel according to Matthew, chapter five, verses forty-three thru forty-eight.

The Rebel Black Dot Irish Song o' the Day


Mu330, "Ireland" (live) from Oh Yeah! (The Last Angry Irishman)

Commentary: Growing up, I didn't think much about the Troubles, about the "low-level war" 'twixt republican & unionist terrorists. ("But, wait," you say, "shouldn't they be called paramilitaries?" Paramilitary in structure, perhaps, but terrorist in tactics & intent, I reply.) The war in Northern Ireland, the Republic of Ireland, & Great Britain was simply a fact of life, like the sky being up or water being wet. Though there are still sporadic terrorist attacks, the peace that has reigned since the signing of the Good Friday Agreement nearly twenty years ago means there is simply no comparison betwixt the current state of play & the relentless violence of the Troubles. Long may it be so!
"My heart was strong, but I was wrong,
To think that I could save her,
Her head was mixed in politics,
And I fell out of favor.
There was no trial, no mercy mild,
And now I am forever exiled.

"Ireland's at war with herself,
Ireland's at war with herself,
Hopeless 'cause I couldn't help when
Ireland's at war with herself…"

Friday, March 10, 2017

Project BLACK MAMBA: Lent

'Tis the festival of Saint Simplicius, Pope (died 483), forty-seventh Bishop of Rome: Saint-link & Wikipedia-link.

Commentary: Wayback Machine.

'Tis also the festival of Saint John Ogilvie, Priest & Martyr, S.J. (1579-1615), martyred in the reign of the king James VI & I: Martyr-link ūnus, Martyr-link duo, & Wikipedia-link.

'Tis also the festival of Saint Marie-Eugénie de Jésus, Religious, R.A. (1817-1898), foundress of the Religious of the Assumption: Saint-link & Wikipedia-link; Wikipedia-link R.A.

Scripture of the Day
Mass Readings
The Book of Ezekiel, chapter eighteen, verses twenty-one thru twenty-eight;
Psalm One Hundred Thirty, verses one thru eight;
The Gospel according to Matthew, chapter five, verses twenty thru twenty-six.

Individual Reading
The Letter to the Hebrews, chapter five, verses eleven thru fourteen;
The Letter to the Hebrews, chapter six (verses one thru twenty).

Commentary: IV. Jesus's Eternal Priesthood & Eternal Sacrifice: Exhortation to Spiritual Renewal (5:11-6:12) & God's Promise Immutable (6::13-20).

The Rebel Black Dot Irish Song o' the Day


Mick Moloney, "There Were Roses" from Green Linnet Records: The Twentieth Anniversary Collection (The Last Angry Irishman)

Commentary: "There Were Roses" has a Wikipedia page: Wikipedia-link. 'Tis a beautiful lament of the Troubles, of two innocent friends, Scott & Sean Mcdonald, who became victims of the internecine violence. Methinks this song especially poignant in this, the Year of Our Lord 2017, the five hundredth anniversary of the beginning of the Protestant Reformation, that sad, sacrilegious schism that has been the scandal of Western Christendom for half a millennium. Of course, the denominational differences were not the real cause of the violence—not in the main, not in the late twentieth century; no, the ancient feud was just a sad smokescreen for political posturing & vicious terrorist agendas.
"My song for you this evening it's not to make you sad,
Nor for adding to the sorrows of our troubled northern land…

"Now, Isaac he was Protestant, but Sean was Catholic born,
But it never made a difference for the friendship, it was strong,
And sometimes in the evening when we heard the sound of drums,
We said, 'It won't divide us. We always will be one.'

"For the ground our fathers plowed and the soil, it is the same,
And the places where we say our prayers have just got different names…

"Now, I don't know where the moral is or where this song should end,
But I wondered just how many wars are fought between good friends,
And those who give the orders, they are not the ones to die,
It's Scott and Mcdonald and the likes of you and I.

"There were roses, roses,
There were roses,
And the tears of the people ran together.
There were roses, roses,
There were roses."

Thursday, March 9, 2017

Project BLACK MAMBA: Lent

'Tis the Optional Memorial of Saint Frances of Rome, Religious, Obl.S.B. (1384-1440), foundress of the Oblates of Saint Frances of Rome: Saint-link ūna, Saint-link duae, & Wikipedia-link; Wikipedia-link Oblates.

Commentary: Wayback Machine. Quoth the Holy Redeemer bulletin:
Frances of Rome, Obl.S.B., is an Italian saint who was a wife, mother, mystic, organizer of charitable services, & a Benedictine oblate who founded a religious community of oblates, who share a common life without religious vows.
'Tis also the festival of Saint Bosa of York, Bishop, O.S.B. (died circa 705): Saint-link & Wikipedia-link.

'Tis also the festival of Saint Dominic Savio, Confessor (1842-1857): Saint-link ūnus, Saint-link duo, & Wikipedia-link.

Commentary: My sources are at loggerheads when it comes to St. Dominic's festival, with 9 March, 10 March, 6 May, & ever 9 October all claimed, each describing some of the others dates as out-of-date. St. Dominic died on 9 March, with the date of death traditionally assigned as a saint's festal day; so, here we are. Quoth the Holy Family bulletin (for 10 March):
Born into a peasant family at Riva, Italy, young Dominic joined Saint John Bosco (31 January) as a student at the Oratory in Turin at the age of twelve. He impressed Don Bosco with his desire to be a priest & to help him in his work with neglected boys. A peacemaker & an organizer, young Dominic founded a group he called the Company of the Immaculate Conception which, besides being devotional, aided John Bosco with the boys & with manual work. All the members, save one, Dominic, would in 1859 join Don Bosco in the beginnings of his Salesian congregation.
Scripture of the Day
Mass Readings
The Book of Esther, chapter C, verses twelve, fourteen fifteen, sixteen, twenty-three, twenty-four, & twenty-five;
Psalm One Hundred Thirty-eight, verses one, two, three, & seven(c) thru eight;
The Gospel according to Matthew, chapter seven, verses seven thru twelve.

Commentary: The episode of What's in the Bible? with Buck Denver rebroadcast this week on CatholicTV was focused on the Book of Esther. Spooky timing! Yes, What's in the Bible? with Buck Denver is a children's show, with puppets. Yes, I am thirty-seven years old. What's your point?

The Rebel Black Dot Irish Song o' the Day


Jerry O'Sullivan, "Colonel Fraser" from Green Linnet Records: The Twentieth Anniversary Collection (The Last Angry Irishman)

Commentary: "Colonel Fraser" is a fast-paced instrumental pieces played on the uilleann pipes. We here at The Secret Base are fans of any instrument that one can play whilst smoking a pipe & imbibing a stout, as in the photograph above, which does not depict piper Jerry O'Sullivan.

Wednesday, March 8, 2017

This Year in Motorsport: Rally Monkey

38th Dakar Rally
Monday thru Saturday, 2-14 January 2017

In many ways, this year's running of the legendary, relocated Dakar Rally was a humdrum affair. New Year's Day falling on a Sunday resulted in the disappointing decision to shorten the Dakar to just twelve stages. Of that paltry dozen, in keeping with current fashion the first & last stages were short, relatively flat, & easily navigable sprints, not lengthy, tortuous, grueling Dakar stages. Of the ten true stages, two were shortened by weather & two were cancelled outright. So, the "mighty" Dakar consisted of a measly six stages. The weather cancellations were not voluntary & I do not mean to make light of them; torrential rain fell upon drought-blighted areas, resulting in flooding & a landslide that buried an entire village in Argentina. Lives were lost. But with all the interruptions leaving only so few competitive stages to be run, even by the end of the not-quite-fortnightly journey it felt as if the Dakar had only just begun. (Obviously, that opinion was formed in the comfort of my easy chair, not from a dirty cockpit hurling through the Patagonian countryside & the high Andes at speed.)

There was also a lack of competition in both the Bikes & Cars categories. Peugeot swept the Cars podium, with "Monsieur Dakar," Stéphane Peterhansel, securing his preposterous thirteenth Dakar victory (six on Bikes & now seven in Cars) over second-year Dakar competitor, & nine-time World Rally Champion, Sébastien Loeb by a paltry five minutes; five-time Dakar winner Cyril Despres (all on Bikes) rounded out the French marque's triumph. In Bikes, due to a team strategy error, all of the Hondas were handed a one-hour time penalty, severely dampening their chances of victory. K.T.M.'s Toby Price, the 2016 Bikes winner, crashed out with the broken femur; his K.T.M. teammates than endured to sweep the podium, with Sam Sunderland earning his maiden Dakar title. Honda's Joan "Bang Bang" Barreda finished forty-three minutes in arrears of Sunderland, leaving all to wonder what might have been without the Hondas' one-hour penalty.

A fierce battle in Trucks between the Russian "Kamaz Army" & two-time winner Gerard de Rooy's Iveco squad saw Kamaz return to the top two steps of the podium, with Eduard Nikolaev winning his second Dakar as a driver, his third overall. (Each behemoth truck boasts a crew of three: driver, co-driver, & mechanic.) All the favorites in Quads ran into difficulties early & often, leaving Sergey Karyakin to claim a maiden victory aboard his Yamaha. (This year also saw the introduction of a new category, U.T.V.s, which received almost no television coverage on the N.B.C. Sports Network.)

Attrition was low in this year's Dakar, befitting the dramatically shortened course. In no category did less than fifty-nine per cent (59%) of entrants finish the rally, & a ridiculous ninety per cent (90%) of the Trucks competitors were still in it at the end. I'm not pleased to see anyone crash out, but the Dakar is meant to be the world's most grueling test of man & machine, not just a time trial. Ninety per cent is an unusually high finish rate for a Formula One grand prix; it is quite simply embarrassing for the supposedly intimidating Dakar Rally.

Cars: 58 of 79 (73%)
Bikes: 97 of 143 (68%)
Trucks: 45 of 50 (90%)
Quads: 22 of 37 (59%)
U.T.V.s: 5 of 8 (63%)

Overall: 249 of 317 (72%)

I'm looking forward to the thirty-ninth running of Dakar, scheduled for January 2018, but for the first time I'm looking forward with jaundiced caution, instead of with unbridled glee. A certain trust was broken this year; a certain luster has been lost, though I am not prepared to stipulate that it cannot be recovered. More stages! Harder stages! A Dakar worthy of the name, even if it does not conclude in Dakar, Senegal. (Given the ongoing threat of jihadist terrorism, it is not at present feasible to return to the original Paris to Dakar course through the Sahara Desert.)

2017 World Rally Championship
I would love to be actively following the World Rally Championship (W.R.C.), especially in light of a twofold shake up. Teams: Quadruple World Champion manufacturer Volkswagen withdrew from the sport, part of the continuing fallout from the V.W. emissions scandal, while Toyota & Citroën reentered as full-time competitors alongside Ford & Hyundai. There are also new World Rally Car regulations for 2017, allowing for the glorious combination of greater engine power (torque & horsepower) & increased grip (mechanical & aerodynamic), which should result in higher speeds & greater overall awesomeness. Alas, I have been unable to discover any U.S. television coverage of the W.R.C.! To this point, I have never found the available online coverage to be a worthy substitute for traditional T.V. coverage, but these are desperate times that might just call for desperate measures.

Two rallies have been run so far this year, Monte Carlo & Sweden; Mexico is coming up this very weekend, 10-12 March. I franlly don't have the time, but I might just have to make the time to make an effort. I sleep too much anyway.

Project BLACK MAMBA: Lent

'Tis the Optional Memorial of Saint John of God, Religious, O.H. (1495-1550), founder of the Brothers Hospitallers of Saint John of God, formally the Hospitaller Order of the Brothers of Saint John of God: Saint-link ūnus, Saint-link duo, & Wikipedia-link; Wikipedia-link O.H.

Commentary: Wayback Machine. Quoth the Holy Redeemer bulletin:
John of God, O.H., was a Portuguese-born soldier turned health-care worker in Spain, whose followers later formed the Brothers Hospitallers of Saint John of God, a worldwide Catholic religious institute dedicated to the care of the poor, sick, & those suffering from mental disorders.
Quoth the Holy Family bulletin:
Having given up active Christian belief while a soldier, John was forty before the depth of his sinfulness began to dawn on him. He decided to give the rest of his life to God's service, & headed at once for Africa, where he hoped to free captive Christians & possibly be martyred. He was soon advised that his desire for martyrdom was not spiritually well based, & returned to Spain & the relatively prosaic activity of a religious goods store. Yet he was still not settled. Moved initially by a sermon of Saint John of Ávila (10 May), he one day engaged in a public beating of himself, begging mercy & wildly repenting for his past life.
'Tis also the festival of Saint Duthac, Bishop (circa 1000-1065, A.K.A. Duthus), the "Chief Confessor of Ireland & Scotland:" Saint-link & Wikipedia-link.

'Tis also the festival of Blessed Wincenty Kadłubek, Bishop, O.Cist. (circa 1160-1223, A.K.A. Vincent Kadlubek): Blessed-link & Wikipedia-link.

Scripture of the Day
Mass Readings
The Book of Jonah, chapter three, verses one thru ten;
Psalm Fifty-one, verses three & four, twelve & thirteen, eighteen & nineteen;
The Gospel according to Luke, chapter eleven, verses twenty-nine thru thirty-two.

Liberty & Union

Whatever our differences, whatever our disagreements, if we cannot speak to one another, if we cannot engage in civil & respectful dialogue, then the republic is truly lost. You need not agree with my beliefs to defend my right to participate in the great marketplace of ideas. Please pray for the anti-free-speech Fascist who daily knocked down & then this morning stole the 40 Days for Life sign out of my front yard.

Every morning, when I found the sign laid flat in the yard, I would set it up again. This morning, I found it simply gone, the metal legs that held it aloft still sticking up out of the ground. I am trying hard not to bear this individual any ill will, but I am outraged.

The Rebel Black Dot Irish Song o' the Day


Dropkick Murphys, "Fields of Athenry" from Blackout (The Last Angry Irishman)

Commentary:
"By a lonely prison wall
I heard a young girl calling,
'Michael, they have taken you away,
For you stole Trevelyn's corn
So the young might see the morn,
Now a prison ship lies waiting in the bay'…

"By a lonely prison wall
I heard a young man calling,
'Nothing matters, Mary, when you're free,
Against the famine and the crown
I rebelled; they cut me down;
Now you must raise our child with dignity.'

"By a lonely harbor wall
She watched the last star falling
As the prison ship sailed out against the sky.
Sure she'll wait and hope and pray
For her love in Botany Bay,
It's so lonely 'round the fields of Athenry."

Tuesday, March 7, 2017

Project BLACK MAMBA: Lent

'Tis the Optional Memorial of Saints Perpetua & Felicity, Martyrs (died circa 203), martyred in the reign of the emperor Septimius Severus: Martyrs-link, Martyr-link Papa, Martyr-link Foxtrot, & Wikipedia-link.

Commentary: Wayback Machine. Quoth the Holy Redeemer bulletin:
The Passion of St. Perpetua, St. Felicitas, & their Companions is one of the oldest & most notable early Christian texts. Perpetua & Felicity (believed to have died in A.D. 203) are Christian martyrs of the third century. Vibia Perpetua was a married noblewoman, said to have been twenty-two years old at the time of her death, & mother of an infant she was nursing. Felicity, a slave imprisoned with her & pregnant at the time, was martyred with her. They were put to death along with others at Carthage in the Roman province of Africa.
Quoth the Holy Family bulletin:
Despite threats of persecution & death, Perpetua, Felicity—a slavewoman & expectant mother—& three companions, Revocatus, Secundulus, & Saturninus, refused to renounces their Christian faith. For their unwillingness, all were sent to the public games in the amphitheater. There Perpetua & Felicity were beheaded, & the others killed by beats. Felicity gave birth to a girl a few days before the games commenced. Perpetua's record of her trial & imprisonment ends the day before the games.
'Tis also the festival of Saint Eubulus, Martyr (died circa 308), martyred in the reign of the emperor Maximinus II: Martyr-link & Wikipedia-link.

'Tis also the festival of Blessed Leonid Feodorov, Exarch & Martyr (1879-1935), martyred in the reign of the general secretary Joseph Stalin: Martyr-link & Wikipedia-link.

Lenten Scripture of the Day
Mass Readings
The Book of Isaiah, chapter fifty-five, verses ten & eleven;
Psalm Thirty-four, verses four & five, six & seven, sixteen & seventeen, & eighteen & nineteen;
The Gospel according to Matthew, chapter six, verses seven thru fifteen.

Mass Journal: Week Ten
Reflection by Matthew Kelly, founder of the Dynamic Catholic Institute:
Before Christmas last year, I saw a Jewish scholar interviewed on television. The topic of discussion was the influence Jesus has exerted on human history. In summary, the scholar concluded, "The impact this man has had on human history is undeniable. Because of this man we call Jesus, the world will never be the same. Because of Jesus, men & women will never think the same. Regardless of whether or not we believe he was the Son of God, because of this man who walked the earth two thousand years ago, men & women will never live the same, will never be the same."

The Rebel Black Dot Irish Song o' the Day


Irish Band, "The Minstrel Boy" via iTunes (from 100 Hits: Irish & Celtic Favorites) (The Last Angry Irishman)

Commentary: I shall always harbor immense fondness for "The Minstrel Boy" in part because I first became aware of the song when 'twas sung by Chief Miles Edward O'Brien, played by Colm Meaney, in the Star Trek: The Next Generation episode "The Wounded."
"The minstrel boy to the war is gone,
In the ranks of death you will find him;
His father's sword he has girded on
And his wild heart slung behind him;
'Land of Song!' said the warrior bard,
'Though all the world betrays thee,
One sword at least thy rights shall guard,
One faithful harp shall praise thee…"

Monday, March 6, 2017

The Rebel Black Dot Irish Song o' the Day


Séamus Ennis, "Rainy Day/First You Must Learn the Grip" Green Linnet Records: The Twentieth Anniversary Collection (The Last Angry Irishman)

Commentary: My presumption is that "Rainy Day" is the name of the song played before Séamus Ennis's dialogue, "First You Must Learn the Grip." Between the use of slang—referring to self-important folklore scholars the the "folklordy-lordy themselves"—& the potential use of Irish-language words & proper nouns, the precise meaning of much of "First You Must Learn the Grip" can only be guessed at, but the gist is readily apparent.
"You know, there's an awful lot to be said about this Irish traditional folk music and folklore. Because, first of all, you have to learn it. And first you must learn the talk, and then you must learn the grip, and after that you must learn the truckley-howl (?), and then you have the whole lot, only to just keep on practicing it. Because, uh, Séamus Ennis knows far about this than even the old folklordy-lordy themselves. Because Séamus Ennis once met a little leprechauny-truckley-howl (?, again) at the bottom of the garden doth (?) and up the garden path, while came up from that in the Limeretty-Limeretty hillockles (?). Before the earthian throne (?), before the leprechaun era, and long before the Argy-farey (?). And that was in the deep 'pon doom, before the Emerald Isle was ever dropped *plop! plop!* in the water."

Project BLACK MAMBA: Lent

'Tis the festival of Saint Fridolin, Abbot, O.S.B. (died circa 540): Saint-link & Wikipedia-link.

'Tis also the festival of Saint Cyril of Constantinople, Priest, O.Carm. (circa 1126-1230): Saint-link & Wikipedia-link.

Commentary: Wayback Machine.

Scripture of the Day
Mass Readings
The Book of Leviticus, chapter nineteen, verses one, two, & eleven thru eighteen;
Psalm Nineteen, verses eight, nine, ten, & fifteen;
The Gospel according to Matthew, chapter twenty-five, verses thirty-one thru forty-six.

Sunday, March 5, 2017

The Explorers' Club, № DXXXIX

Operation AXIOM: The World War—The Russian Revolution, Part I
8-16 March 1917: The February Revolution—Industrial strikes led to general protests to mass uprisings & widespread mutinies in Petrograd (pre-war St. Petersburg), leading to the abdication of Nicholas II as Emperor & Autocrat of All the Russias (15 March) & the declaration by parliamentarians of the Provisional Government, which uneasily shared power with the populist Petrograd Soviet.






Lest we forget.

Commentary: Called the "February Revolution" because in 1917 the Russian Empire still used the "Old Style" (O.S.) Julian calendar dates, 23 February-3 March, as opposed to the "New Style" (N.S.) Gregorian calendar dates of 8-16 March. Spoiler alert: We'll see this O.S./N.S. monthly discrepancy again in the October Revolution, which took place in November 1917.

Project BLACK MAMBA: First Sunday of Lent

'Tis the First Sunday of Lent: Lent-link & Wikipedia-link.

Otherwise, 5 March would be the festival of Saint Lucius I, Pope (circa 200-254), twenty-second Bishop of Rome: Saint-link & Wikipedia-link.

Commentary: Wayback Machine.


'Twould also be the festival of Saint Piran, Abbot (died circa 480): Saint-link & Wikipedia-link; Wikipedia-link Day.

'Twould also be the festival of Saint John Joseph of the Cross, Priest, O.F.M. (1654-1739): Saint-link ūnus, Saint-link duo, & Wikipedia-link.

Scripture of the Week
Mass Readings
The Book of Genesis, chapter two, verses seven, eight, & nine & chapter three, verses one thru seven;
Psalm Fifty-one, verses three & four, five & six, twelve & thirteen, & seventeen;
The Letter to the Romans, chapter five, verses twelve thru nineteen
(or, the Letter to the Romans, chapter five, verses twelve, seventeen, eighteen, & nineteen);
The Gospel according to Matthew, chapter four, verses one thru eleven.

The Rebel Black Dot Song of the Lord's Day


Ralph Stanley, "O Death" from O Brother, Where Art Thou? Music from a Film by Joel Coen & Ethan Coen (The Last Angry Man)

Saturday, March 4, 2017

Project BLACK MAMBA: Lent

'Tis the Optional Memorial of Saint Casimir, Confessor (1458-1484): Saint-link ūnus, Saint-link duo, & Wikipedia-link.

Commentary: Wayback Machine. Quoth the Holy Redeemer bulletin:
St. Casimir was a prince of the Kingdom of Poland & of the Grand Ducky of Lithuania. He became known for his piousness, devotion to God, & generosity towards the sick & poor.
Quoth the Holy Family bulletin:
St. Casimir, son of the king of Poland, was born in 1458. He practiced the Cristian virtues with sepcial regard to chastity & kindness to the poor & was zealous in the faith, particularly in his devotion to the holy Eucharist & the Virgin Mary. Casimir died of consumption in 1484.
'Tis also the festival of Saint Felix of Rhuys, Hermit & Abbot, O.S.B. (died 1038): Saint-link & Wikipedia-link.

'Tis also the festival of Saint Peter of Pappacarbone, Bishop & Abbot, O.S.B. (died 1123): Saint-link & Wikipedia-link.

Scripture of the Day
Mass Readings
The Book of Isaiah, chapter fifty-eight, verses nine(b) thru fourteen;
Psalm Eighty-six, verses one thru six;
The Gospel according to Luke, chapter five, verses twenty-seven thru thirty-two.

Project BLACK MAMBA: Lent, Backlog Edition

Friday, 3 March was the Optional Memorial of Saint Katharine Drexel, Virgin, S.B.S. (1858-1955), foundress of the Sisters of the Blessed Sacrament: Saint-link ūna, Saint-link duae, & Wikipedia-link; Wikipedia-link S.B.S.

Commentary: Wayback Machine. Quoth the Holy Redeemer bulletin:
Saint Katharine Drexel, S.B.S., was an American heiress, philanthropist, religious sister, educator, & foundress. She is the only canonized saint to have been born a United States citizen. As a young woman she walked away from her life of riches by becoming a vowed religious & devoted her very substantial income to the evangelization & education of Native Americans & African Americans. To accomplish this, she founded the Sisters of the Blessed Sacrament for Indians & Colored People.
Quoth the Holy Family bulletin:
While on a European tour, she met Pope Leo XIII & asked him to send more missionaries to Wyoming for her friend Bishop James O'Connor. The pope replied, "Why don't you become a missionary?" His answer shocked her into considering new possibilities. Back home, Katharine visited the Dakotas, met the Sioux leader Red Cloud, & began her systematic aid to Indian missions. By 1942, she had a system of black catholic schools in thirteen states, plus forty mission centers & twenty-three rural schools. In all, she established fifty missions for Indians in sixteen states. Her crowning achievement was the founding of Xavier University in New Orleans, the first Catholic university in the United States for African Americans.
'Twas also the festival of Saint Anselm of Nonantola, Abbot, O.S.B. (died circa 805, the Duke of Friuli): Saint-link & Wikipedia-link.

'Twas also the festival of Blessed Innocent of Berzo, Priest, O.F.M. Cap. (1844-1890): Blessed-link & Wikipedia-link.

Scripture of the Day
Mass Readings
The Book of Isaiah, chapter fifty-eight, verses one thru nine(a);
Psalm Fifty-one, verses three & four, five & six(a,b), & eighteen & nineteen;
The Gospel according to Matthew, chapter nine, verses fourteen & fifteen.

The Rebel Black Dot Irish Song o' the Day


Great Big Sea, "The Night Pat Murphy Died" from Play (The Last Angry Irishman)

Commentary:
"As Mrs. Murphy sat in the corner pouring out her grief,
Kelly and his gang came tearing down the street,
They went into an empty room and a bottle of whiskey stole,
And put the bottle with the corpse to keep that whiskey cold!

"That's how they showed their respect for Paddy Murphy,
That's how they showed their honor and their pride,
They said it was a sin, a shame and they winked at one another,
And every drink in the place was full the night Pat Murphy died!…"