Thursday, July 31, 2014

Deliver Us From Evil, the Book

I've finished reading "Beware the Night," by Ralph Sarchie and Lisa Collier Cool, now retitled "Deliver Us From Evil" after the movie.  Despite the major players being generally sedevacantist, sedeprivationist, or sedesomething else, it is a very good read.  If I had any complaint, it was that the main story is constantly derailed by related anecdotes, but these anecdotes are equally interesting, so I'm inclined to just forgive it and move on.  By the time you finish the book, you're less inclined to waste time arguing niggling points about papal authority and would rather just get on with arranging to have your house blessed.

After reading Gabriel Amorth, Malachi Martin, and Matt Baglio, there were still some new and interesting observations to take away from Ralph Sarchie's experiences.  Here are some highlights.

  • Halloween is no joke.  The negative spiritual character if late October and early November existed long before the holiday.  That's why it's Halloween.  The tradition of costuming evolved as a means to possibly avoid possession by remaining incognito while the demons were roaming.  Even now, Mr. Sarchie has observed a dramatic surge in new cases during this season.
  • Another especially bad time is Christmas.  There seems to be a demonic rampage every year around the birth of Christ.
  • Only the most powerful spirits, called the true devils, can manipulate sacred objects.
  • Demons often masquerade as ghosts or human spirits.  However, when demonic apparitions attempt to appear human, there is always something wrong.  Limbs or the face may be missing, or there may be some other distortion.  If you encounter an allegedly sympathetic spirit who exists only from the waist up, be very suspicious.
  • Incubi and succubi do happen.  Yikes.
  • Mr. Sarchie has observed three different varieties of demonic approach.  There are the "intellectuals," who approach a target with what may seem to be deep insights, religious experiences, and secret knowledge.  The "con artists" attempt to pass themselves off as human ghosts with sympathetic stories to engage their victims.  The "brutes" are more bestial and cause clawing, growling, and biting behaviors in possession.
  • If anyone needed the advice, don't rent your basement to Satanists. 

Also, we're also actually not supposed to talk about this too much because recognition could draw the demon to you.  However, if we don't talk about it at all, it's not as if they'll all just go home to Hell and leave us alone.  Best to be aware, I say.  We are seriously looking into having a priest over to bless our apartment thoroughly, and while he's here were going to have him bless all the religious articles we've been collecting over the years, and that canister of sea salt from Monterey.  We'll try to always have holy water, oil and salt on hand from now on.  It's really the least we can do.

Tuesday, July 29, 2014

General Appeal to Computer Literate People

Ok, here's what's going on.  I thought I fixed the WiFi problems, but apparently that wasn't the whole issue.  Before we spend a minimum of $100 bringing strange geeks into the house, we agreed to poll our friends.  Here is the whole sordid chain of events for diagnostic purposes.

  • There are three Internet capable devices in the household, my old MacBook laptop running an outdated Mac OS X (10.5.8), Dave's new(ish) LG gaming desktop running Windows 7, and his Kindle Fire. 
  • WiFi is provided by Comcast Xfinity via a cable SMCD3GNV modem/router, or whatever it is. Everything used to connect to this network beautifully.
  • WiFi started to get really spotty and unreliable about a month or two ago.  We weren't sure whether it was just crappy service from Comcast or a hacker in our network.  One fateful afternoon last week I decided I would take precautions against the hacker scenario. 
  • I went online to log into our wireless router network settings, planning on just changing the network password.  I pulled out the nifty set-up card with all the usernames and passwords we had established three years ago when we first established the network.  The portal would not accept them.  I tried multiple different times.  I verified that my caps lock was not on.  No dice.
  • Unable to even log into the portal, much less access the network settings, I reset the router to its factory settings.  Then I rebuilt the network with a new name, new login info, new passwords.  My MacBook logged into the new network without a problem.  
  • The LG desktop could see the new network and ostensibly log into the new network, but it insisted there was no Internet access available on that network, or that the signal was very weak.  The problem only grew worse as I went back and forth trying to troubleshoot it, and eventually the MacBook agreed that the network was locked up and would only function via ethernet cable.
  • The router was rebooted several times.  No better result.  It seemed to function perfectly well and was unaware of the problem.  All the right lights seemed to be blinking.
  • And, yes, we made certain our Comcast bill was in fact paid at the time.
  • Eventually, the LG desktop spit out an error message informing me that there was an IP address conflict, which was probably what was locking up the network.  
  • After an hour of research, I thought I'd found a solution to the problem.  I connected the LG desktop to the network via ethernet cable, went into Command Prompt and ran IPCONFIG/RELEASE and IPCONFIG/RENEW.  
  • After that, all problems seemed to be solved.  Both computers were happily using the WiFi as if nothing had ever happened.  
  • Later that same evening, the LG desktop began to have trouble again, recognizing only a weak signal, and then no access at all.  It is aware of the network, but claims the network is not connected to the Internet and that the problem is with the router.  The router is humming along providing wireless service to my MacBook and the Kindle without any trouble.  We don't know what to do about it anymore.

Any thoughts?  Anyone?

Also, does anyone have any glowing reviews or horror stories about Geekatoo?  We'll probably try them before the Geek Squad if nothing else works.

Sunday, July 27, 2014

Word Crimes

This was the best.  I am absolutely going to use this for homeschooling.

Wednesday, July 16, 2014

Awkward Conversations

So, I'm out buying groceries, and I grab a box of pregnancy tests while I'm there because I'd just rather not bother later.  Of course, these always spark some awkward conversation at checkout from female employees because they're always in a theft-proof box and need special attention.

This conversation went on way too long.  I managed to play along without telling her my whole sordid story, because I don't want to be that person.  Did I think I was expecting?  Did I want to be expecting?  If I was expecting, did I want a boy or a girl?  Did I want to find out early or be surprised?  Blah, blah, blah.

In the end, she says, "Well, if you are expecting, I want it to be a girl, and I want you to name her Christine."

God?  Is this a sign?  I was kind of partial to Johanna, but I'm not immovable on the subject.  It's actually a little creepy, because I'm told that up until the last minute I was supposed to be named Christine.  We'll see if we get any more random suggestions.

Sunday, July 13, 2014

Change of Plans

I've been looking forward to moving house for a long time.  Some friends of ours moved into a lovely apartment almost two years ago and I immediately knew I wanted to join them.  Unfortunately we had only just resigned our 12-month lease, so we had a long wait ahead.  When our next opportunity rolled around, they served us with new papers earlier than expected, and the location Dave's new job assignment was in question, so we opted to wait another year.  The move was now scheduled for next April.  I was really looking forward to being closer to friends, closer to Dave's work, closer to the free dog park, in a prettier apartment with a double sink in the kitchen, long counters in the bathroom, a gym and a pool.  (Our current apartment lacks both the gym and the pool, the gym being the more attractive prospect of the two.)

The de-cluttering began in earnest.  We were going to paint the walls, buy new furniture, replace the glass on the dining room table.  There was a whole list of exciting things that would happen "after we move."  One of those things was going to be trying for another pregnancy.  It seemed silly not to at least give it a shot after all the probings and scannings and surgical corrections we had done.

But you know what they say: location, location, location.  As much as I wanted to just move and be done, in the end I couldn't reconcile moving away from my current doctor.  It's not that I'm particularly attached to her, but both my PCP and my OBGYN are in the same building, and that building is just a few minutes up the street we live on now.  The hospital is a ten-minute drive down the road and through a neighborhood.  If we're going to attempt another high-risk pregnancy, it doesn't make sense to move away from this incredibly convenient set-up we have here.

So, I mourned the move for about a day.  Then I bought (and built) new furniture and painted the walls.  I rearranged everything in the living room and the bedroom.  I made pillow covers and new table linens.  A large piece of glass will be procured to keep them nice.  The thought of possibly being pregnant, miserable and couch-ridden soon made me want to do all the heavy lifting now.  In the meantime, we've given up our semi-celibate lives, so we'll see what happens.

Pictures of the new decor to follow, just the "afters" because I forgot to take "befores."   Regardless of whether the pregnancy works out or not, I love our new blue walls.

Saturday, July 12, 2014

Deliver Us From Evil

We went to see this movie last week.  It was pretty good.  More interesting to me is the fifteen-minute documentary on YouTube about the man who inspired the movie.  It's not unhealthy to be reminded now and again on the demonic forces all around us.  I think we might all take life more seriously if we were more aware.

There is some language; be ye warned.

Oh, Ralph Sarchie has also written a book, "Beware the Night," which I intend to read just as soon as it drops on our doorstep.