Archive for July 16th, 2007

Vocation Again

From the ochlophobist:

Tom would tell me, later in the game, that as a white male, even from appalachia, I stood very little chance of getting tenured anywhere other than an Evangelical Christian college, and that I should thus change disciplines. I wandered about, eventually getting my education in the classics of the West not at an academic institution but at an antiquarian bookstore run by one of the last persons to have gotten the old european education (himself a friend and disciple of Alexander Dru), and who led me through a tutorial of the old sort during the years I worked and lived there (yes, in the upstairs of the store which was in an old church with a Torah scroll in a box at the foot of my makeshift bed, though no longer considered a Torah proper, because it had been touched by goyim). It was at that bookstore that I learned that I had little interest in academic politics and that I really did not care for the mass culture of teenagers and twentysomethings which permeates universities. I realized that what I had loved about spending time with Tom was Tom and books and ideas, and not academia. I have not looked backThese years later I find myself a coppersmith by trade turned metal shop foreman. Metal is a much more forgiving image than most human beings, though not nearly as forgiving as the saints; it occasionally can provide one with solace. In its non-ferrous forms, those with which I am most accustomed, it is buoyant at the brake with porosity that rests on whims and God’s weather. Copper gives more than it receives. At the end, for your best, you will sell a work of dull beauty, not the glitter of gold or silver, but one which is well enough pronounced, and admits more of its pedigree of earth than the precious metals. Alexander the coppersmith did much evil to the Apostle Paul (2 Tim. 4). Hopefully St. Asicus and the other coppersmith saints have done something to redeem the trade. It seems to me a human enough endeavor. Metal, especially soft metal, has its own sadness, revealed even in tears (though the common, more polite term is sweat). In the clanging and oft harsh noise of my shop, surrounded by the on their sleeves vices of those who are mostly underclass, I sometimes question myself. Was this manner of life prudently chosen? Those moments are short. Most of my coworkers are from Memphis ghettos or poor rural communities of the northern delta. They only speak narrative.

Thank God for the crooked paths he makes straight.

The ochlophobist causes me once again to visit this topic, especially in light of my previous post on work busyness that prohibits blogging.



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