On Speed Dating of the 1920s

The directions for the 1920s Speed Dating project were handed out in class, but there is another copy of it in the Period 7.2 folder.

The dating profile needs to be complete by the day of the date, but you may not use it on your dates.

Some of the people below have switched characters and I do not have updated photos of claimed characters. Hopefully there won’t be any doubles. That would be an AWKWARD date.


On the Novena to St. Walburga

Today begins the 9-day countdown to the feast of St. Walburga. St. Walburga was a great medieval saint, an abbess of a (ahem) Benedictine Abbey, and patroness of a number of worthy causes:

against coughs
against dog bites
against famine
against hydrophobia
against mad dogs
against plague
against rabies
against storms
Antwerp, Belgium
Eichstätt, Germany, diocese of
Gronigen, Netherlands
Oudenarde, Belgium
Plymouth, England, diocese of
Zutphen, Netherlands

In addition, the rock that seals her relics in Germany weeps an oily liquid that is used as a sacramental as an oil of anointment for bodily ills. It’s called “Walburgis oleum”, and no, I’m not making that up. See the old Catholic Encyclopedia for further details.

If any of those are important to you, or if you just want to take her as a personal patron, then you can join me in a 9-day novena prayer to this great and under-remembered saint.

The Novena to St. Walburga from the Walburga Abbey in Colorado, is kept by prayed thusly:

O God, come to my assistance.
O Lord, make haste to help me.
Glory be to the Father, to the Son, and to the Holy Spirit; as it was in the beginning, is now, and ever shall be, world without end. Amen.

Psalm 23
A psalm of David.

The LORD is my shepherd;
there is nothing I lack.
In green pastures he makes me lie down;
to still waters he leads me;
he restores my soul.
He guides me along right paths
for the sake of his name.
Even though I walk through the valley of the shadow of death,
I will fear no evil, for you are with me;
your rod and your staff comfort me.
You set a table before me
in front of my enemies;
You anoint my head with oil;
my cup overflows.
Indeed, goodness and mercy will pursue me
all the days of my life;
I will dwell in the house of the LORD
for endless days.

Holy Walburga, you dwell in the glory of heaven, gazing upon the face of the Triune God in the company of all the saints. I turn to you, full of trust in the words of Jesus Christ, “Amen, amen I say to you, the one who has faith in me will do the works I do, and greater far than these” (Jn 14:12). God has granted you the gift of healing; help me in my need, which I bring before you (mention petition). Beg God to grant healing, consolation and strength to me and to all those for whom I pray. Implore Him to let me recognize His love and know His presence, whatever He may have in store for me. Ask this for me through Jesus Christ, our Lord, who lives and reigns in the unity of the Father and the Holy Spirit, one God for ever and ever.

St. Walburga, pray for us!

On tests and extra credit in APUSH

APUSHers, two things:

There was some confusion on the take-home test, so I hope to make it clearer.

The secret word for hours 1, 2, 3 is almond. For 7th hour, it is cashew.

You have two chances to take the test; Quia will report the higher score. Do not waste your first chance in case the second one fails. Open book is allowed since I can’t enforce a non-opened-book test anyway.

I discovered an extra credit opportunity. If you go to one of the two remaining events in the Presidential Lecture Series at the Dole Institute of Politics about World War I, then you can write about the experience for up to 20-out-of-1 points of extra credit.

You’ll need to go, prove you went (selfie at the site), and write ~750 words that summarize the lecture, tells what you knew, what you learned, and what differed from what you learned in class. THe write-up is due on the Monday or Tuesday after the lecture.

On dining

One of my favorite comments about the high school lunch room was told to me by a high school teacher over two decades ago. Don’t call the school lunch room a dining room. Teenagers don’t dine, they feed.”

Heh. I’ve made the same mildly amusing observation. So then, one of my favorite modern social philosophers John Cuddlebuck writes on the matter today.


Reclaiming Manners at Table
February 1, 2017 By John Cuddeback

“At table let mirth be with thee, let ribaldry be exiled…for at table it becometh not to be sad nor to make others sad. … Nothing should be blirted out at table that might diminish mirth. It is wrong to defame the character of those not present; nor should one’s personal sorrow be unburdened to another on such an occasion. …It is impolite to sit at table rapt in thought.”
Erasmus, On Good Manners for Boys

There is so much at stake in how we eat. Daily.

Table manners are at the heart of every day civility. We are inducted into them almost from our first days. From the start we learn that we are all in this together–having daily needs that we fulfill, always with an eye to the presence and needs of others. At table we are at one with our fellow men–first of all with our own household, but also with any who happen to join us.

In attending to the most pressing of human desires, we are brought through our appetite into relation with others. Yeah, when disciplined, this appetite blossoms into the occasion of communion with others. And so it is with other bodily appetites.

There are so many aspects of good manners at table. Where else are the multiple levels of human life, from lower to higher, from bodily to spiritual, so interwoven?

Erasmus focuses our attention on conversation, on what we say or don’t say. The table is a place to be present to one another, in and through our eating. And if manners are well observed, it is an unparalleled daily context for conversation. As Leon Kass notes, “Without conversation the belly rules the mouth, and the table becomes no different from a trough.”

Here we first learn to listen: others have something to say, to which I must hearken. We also learn that we have something to say, to which others will listen, and we learn how to say it. [Emphasis: mine—W]

It is always about presence. Eating together is the most obvious activity that constitutes who we are as a household, daily. How we do it is the recurring expression and cultivation of our self-understanding, of who we seek to be.

Not just feeding, as a rule we eat together, according to certain forms, gratefully celebrating what it is to be human. [Emphasis: mine—W]

So here’s to the parents and teachers and others who make heroic efforts in instilling and practicing manners. You enhance our mirth, at the table and in all corners of life.

This is the seventh and final piece in the series: Reclaiming Manners.

Erasmus of Rotterdam (1466-1536) was one of the great Renaissance humanists. According to Kass his On Good Manners for Boys was an immediate success and was used throughout Europe in the formation of youth.

Image: P.S. Kroyer (1851-1909, Danish)

So put down your water bottle and refrain from the incessant flipping of early adolescence. Actually talk to someone, or at least get the conversation started. “How did your chemistry test go?” “What did you think of that game last night?” “How is your prayer life?” (bonus points for that one).

Conversation is one of the things that separates man from beast! Go be fully alive, and be the person that God made you to be, in communion with the people around you!

Savor the delicate taste of your Treat America hamburger (or, as much as is possible anyway). Did you order the special today? Take a moment and enjoy the complexity of your salami sandwich—or is there any complexity? Does your food choice reflect your attitude to lunch—that it is simply empty calories? Do you bring a meal, or do you pack fuel?