UNKNOWN SOMETHING: A CHRISTMAS TIDING

“I’m reasonably confident,” says Dr William Lane Craig, academic apologist for the so-called virgin birth of Jesus, as represented in Christian New Testament and in the Qur’an. Reasonably. Not over-confident then, such as might bespeak unwarranted fanaticism, up to and including delusion. And yet the word confident, however sanguine rather than feverish, somehow flies in the […]

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FAR NOT BE IT

Wow. Leaving aside for the moment any question of whether that list of words was, in accord with my intention, no less amusing than conspicuously facile, I just want to say that I’m surprised — hardly for the first time — by the sheer vehemence of response. Fine, none of these reactions avowed specific disagreement with […]

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SO, JUST SO

Dumbfounded by what I’d assumed must be a typo, I contacted a NIOSH science administrator to confirm my reading of their advisories on N95 masks for smoky air. “You guys are saying that we should not be wearing them in conditions like these?” “So, the mask itself poses a health risk, potential health risk. We always […]

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DUMB HOUSE

Here’s what I’m hoping for, having downsized my earthly expectations. Or fine-tuned them — that’s how I prefer to think of this, this list of five things. Five, because you have to be sensible, you have to edit. The scale has to be reasonable, or not unreasonable. I could have named a hundred without batting […]

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SCARCELY A TITHE

“What are you working on?” writes my biggest fan, E–––– A–––––––––, one of whose hyphens really is a hyphen. E––––, I believe you’ll be pleased by my answer: a series of touching vignettes of our chirpiest intellectuals. First up — and I have disguised his name and official title in the interest of mystery — is […]

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