But... I finished a few good books this week.
Command Authority, by Tom Clancy and Mark Greaney. I've been a Clancy fan for years, and always amazed by how prescient his books are. This one, published posthumously last fall, has all sorts of eerie connections with things we've seen in recent news. A Russian dissident who mysteriously dies of polonium poisoning. A Russian president with close ties to the old KGB who wants to reclaim the old Soviet satellite states. A Russian economy and political system riddled with corruption and basically run by organized crime. Ukraine wanting to break free of Russian control but unable to stand independently. An attack on an American diplomatic outpost, staged to look like a political protest turned violent (but handled with much more integrity by the fictional American administration than the Benghazi attack was). The Clancy characters have come full circle, with a significant plot element involving flashbacks to a young Jack Ryan enmeshed in international intrigue 30 years ago. Okay, so the Clancy characters have never been completely believable -- but the events they deal with are a snapshot of the real world. I wonder what the franchise will do with his characters in the future.
7 Men: and the Secret of their Greatness, by Eric Metaxas. I've briefly reviewed this before but it merits a read by anyone who appreciates biography. It's particularly nice because of the manageable size of the 7 mini-biographies. All 7 men (George Washington, William Wilberforce, Dietrich Bonhoffer, Eric Liddell, Jackie Robinson, Pope John Paul II, Chuck Colson) took courageous stands and made sacrifices based largely if not exclusively on their Christian faith.
In other randomness, the basement has mostly stopped leaking because the rain has stopped falling quite so hard and fast from the south. Smudge has been retrieved from the basement and escorted back outside where he belongs. We are afraid that when he is inside now, he is too scared of the other cats and his own shadow to eat. He is truly an outdoor cat now. He goes from hidey-hole to hidey-hole outside and seems relatively happy as long as we keep feeding him.
I took the girls to the Journey Theater Arts production of The Little Mermaid Jr. tonight. It was lovely all the way around. We know Ariel from church, and recognized several other faces and names in the cast and crew.
My Olympic knitting is almost done, but not quite. There have been several days where I didn't work on it at all, so it looks like I may end up having to sprint to the finish line. But I don't think I'm awake enough to do any more tonight.
I am finding it hard to enjoy grading anymore, and I keep getting more of it to do.