Spes Scotorum

O Sancte Columba, spes Scotorum, ora pro me ad Jesum per Maria.


My rough translation from French to English:

Your great-great-grandmother, she had fourteen children;
Your great-grandmother had almost as many;
For your grandmother three were enough;
And your mother didn’t want any: you were an accident.

As for you, my girl, you change partners all the time.
When you do something stupid, you get out of it with an abortion.
But there are mornings you wake up crying,
When you dream at night of a big table surrounded by children.

* * *

Dégénérations by Mes Aïeux

Ton arrière-arrière grand-père il a défriché la terre
Ton arrière grand-père il a labouré la terre
Et puis ton grand-père il a rentabilizé la terre
Et puis ton ton père il a vendu pour devenir fonctionaire
Et puis toi mon ptit gar tu sait plus se que tu vas faire
Dans ton ptit trois et demi bien trop chère frète en hiver
Il te vient des envie de devenir propriètaire et tu rêve la nuit d’avoir ton petit lopin de terre

Ton arrière-arrière grand-mère elle a eu quatorze enfants
Ton arrière grand-mère en a eu quasiment autant
Et puis ta grand-mère en a eu trois c’tait suffisant
pis ta mère en voulait pas, toi t’étais un accident
Et puis toi ma p’tite tu change de partenaire tout le temp quand tu fait une connerie tu t’en sors en avortant mais ya des matin tu te reveille en pleurant quand tu rêve la nuit d’une grande table entouré d’enfants

Ton arrière-arrière grand-père a vécu la grosse misère
Ton arrière grand-père il ramassait les sents noir
Et puis ton grand-père il a miracle est devenu millionaire
Et puis ton ton père en a hérité et l’a toute mis dans ses REER
Et puis toi p’tite jeunesse tu dois ton cul au ministaire pas moyen d’avoir un pret dans une institution bancaire pour calmé tes envie de hold-uper la caissière tu lis des livres qui parle de simplicité volontaire

Tes arrière-arrière grand-parents il savait comment fêtez
Tes arrière grand-parent ça swignait fort dans les veillées
Puis tes grand-parents on connu l’époque yé-yé
Et puis tes parents c’etait les disco c’est la qu’ils se sont rencontré
Et puis mon ami qu’est-ce tu fais de ta soiré éteint donc ta TV faut pas resté encabanner heuresement que dans la vie ya des choses qui refuse de changé enfile tes plus beaux habilles car nous allons ce soir dansez

Looks Like All Hell’s About to Break Loose!

Radar Image, Central Florida, 21 August 2012, 3:32 PM.

Actually it already has.  One of my clients in Orlando is without power and has a failed UPS battery in the server room — a UPS that provides power to all of the network and VoIP equipment!  When the power’s back up, things will work, but they will have to listen to the incessant beeping of the failed battery backup until I can get a replacement installed.

Puff the Magic Dragon

Ever since I was very young, I have wept at the sound of the Peter, Paul, and Mary classic Puff the Magic Dragon.  Now that I am on meds for bi-polar disorder, obsessive compulsive disorder, &c., I no longer do.  I sort of wish I still did.  Is the present me me, or has me changed?  I’m told that I likely will have to remain on these or similar medications for the rest of my life.  What have I lost?  What have I gained?

A Kenotic, Self-Emptying Way

“We are Western Christians, Catholics of the Latin Rite separated from the Holy See. We are invited together in a kenotic, self-emptying way, without denying who we are, and what we have been, to re-enter the fullness of unity severed by act of state five hundred years ago.”

— The Erstwhile Bishop of Ebbsfleet, Msgr. Andrew Burnham.

Fellow Clansmen

Colin Campbell & John Campbell.

Colin Campbell is wearing what is termed by the modern weaving mills as the Ancient Campbell tartan; John Campbell dons the so-called Campbell of Breadalbane woollen cloth.

The Campbell tartan in darker shades, but the identical sett (which is what determines the distinctiveness of a tartan), is termed “Black Watch.”  Either many Campbells who served in the Highland Regiments later adopted this pattern for their own civilian use, or the many Campbells who joined-up were already wearing this tartan which was subsequently standardised by the Government.

* * *

In 1870, a certain “Mr Mitchell, Publisher to the Queen” produced two large leatherbound volumes of magnificent watercolour portraits by Kenneth Macleay RSA.  Measuring a massive 22 x 18 inches, they contain 31 portraits of 57 individuals described as below.

Title Page.

They are without doubt the most detailed portraits of Highland dress and tartans from that era and are highly prized as research tools and, of course, as portraits for today’s homes. The original water colours are owned by Her Majesty Queen Elizabeth II and are held in Windsor Castle.

Front Cover.

Red Harlaw

An siccan a lierachie
I’m sure ye never saw
As wis amo the Hielanmen,
When they saw Macdonnel fa.