Sunday, July 10, 2005

L&S: Feeling the Burn

I woke this morning stiff and achy from the prior evening's revelry. I don't blame the two beers I drank; I blame the extended bouts of laughing I enjoyed. Sadly for you and the historical record, I cannot tell you exactly why without resorting to gross improprieties. And I wouldn't do that. But I can outline the general cause of my laughter hang-over.

Glen Whitman and I spent a long while drawing out details of Catholic theological doctrine from William Perales, a student attending the seminar. William, who blogs at Eagle and Elephant, patiently explained to us such things as the limits of atonement and distinction between venial and mortal sins.

I didn't laugh at that bit, of course. But to the undoubted horror of William—who nonetheless had the grace to not pound us to damnation—Glen and I immediately proceeded to test the application of Church teachings to, um, various sexual practices. I leave it to Glen to spell out the details. He deserves most of the credit or blame, after all. As Glen put it at breakfast this morning, "You took things up to the line and then I Hokey Pokeyed right over it."

Poor William! And poor me! I laughed so hard I wept. My ribs ached. Those little muscles that attach to the back of my skull, the ones I use to grin, burned from the exertion. Clearly, I did not prepare adequately for this seminar. I only researched and wrote, whereas I should have instituted some sort of laughter training program.

(Meanwhile, as I type, Glen offers a lecture on the economic way of thinking. As always, he sprinkles his talk with lively examples and funny asides. Would that more economists thought—or at least taught—the same way!)


Anonymous said...

Take a handful of vitamins (especially C and B complex) to get over the achey hangover blahs. I know a very bright guy that must have been born without the ability to laugh because I've never seen him laugh out loud. Keep the laughter flowing!

Tell me if I'm not correct. I think you meant VENIAL sin not venal sin. Venal means susceptible to bribery and corruption. Venial is term from Christian Theology denoting a lesser sin, not depriving the soul of divine grace.

I got that out of my Sharp handy dandy electronic dictionary. I love this damn gizmo; so much easier (and far better) to use than a heavy paper dictionary.

Tom W. Bell said...

Thanks, Anon. I guess I did mean VENIAL. Leastwise, I'll bet that William meant that, and I'm going on his authority. I'll fix the post.