Easter Tuesday Update

1 The front yard mini orchard makes me smile:

Figs are doing nicely. Plus, fig trees are very beautiful and peaceful.
Our two little apricot trees are doing well. Lots of fruit setting.
A few cherries on our 3-in-one cherry tree. These are Bings, I think.

Some pears are setting on our 4-in-0ne pear tree. Something is attacking the leaves, leaving unsightly spots on them. Must check into that, and get some netting for all the trees so we don’t end up with fat, happy squirrels and other vermin and no fruit for us.

The pomegranate is just now starting to blossom. That little bush is irrepressible: for the three years we’ve had it, I’ve ended up trimming away most of it a couple times a year, just to keep it a manageable size. Doesn’t matter: it began the spring as a collection of bare sticks about diaphragm high, and is now is as tall as I am and wider than it is tall.

The citrus tree is likewise going to town. I trimmed it so much this winter I was afraid I’d damaged it. Nope. It’s an unsightly thicket already a couple months later and – this is new – has quite a few blossoms on it. This is the tree grown from a seed by our late son Andrew, who, when he was very little, asked what would happen if he planted a seed he got out of a piece of fruit he was eating. We said: plant it and find out. The seed grew and progressed, from a little pot in a window box to a larger pot on the patio, to a half wine barrel. At one point, I had to basically cut it in half – it was getting so tall and stringy in its barrel. It has produced maybe 4 pieces of fruit in its 15 or so year life.

Needs some serious trimming/shaping, but it’s blooming, so I’ll probably have to wait until fall. B y which time it should really be a mess.

Three years ago, we positioned it in a spot set aside for it out front behind the brickwork I made. It was MUCH happier in the ground than in a pot, and immediately took off. Again, I have to trim it ruthlessly a couple times a year – it wants to be a big tree, we need it to stay a little tree. And, finally, this year, while far from covered in blossoms like many citrus trees this time of year, it does have quite a few! Maybe we get fruit this year.

2 Radio silence from our little school, at least as far as gender theory goes. I am learning to embrace the hatiest hater label. Maybe I’ll get it put on t-shirt. At least I’m sleeping a little more. I don’t know how my wife can take it. At least school is out this week.

I alternate between being ashamed I did such a poor job defending our position and the realization that it probably mattered little: once the mob has decided you’re a bigoted hater, it’s not like you’re going to get much of a hearing. After the fact, one thinks of many things one could have said. For example: Freud, the rest of the story:

When Ziggy first started analyzing people, his customers were, naturally, people who could pay for it. Thus, the parade of identified patients were largely the children of wealth and status.

In this parade, Freud found a number of patients who claimed they were being or had been sexually molested. Thus, he came to one of the great turning points in modern psychology. He could believe the patients (his records show that he initially did!) and go to bat for them – and find himself accusing the people who were paying his bills, the people to whose parties and teas he was being invited, of being monsters or, at least, of having monstrous things happening under their noses. It would have most likely ended his career, or at least put it on a less immediately gratifying trajectory.

Or he could ‘discover’ in a flash of Hegelian enlightenment that these patients were merely fantasizing or hallucinating because they were sexually repressed or suffering under an Oedipus complex or just in general obsessed with sex in the deepest darkest corners of their minds. That way, he could refocus what would be really uncomfortable attention from the family and friends of the patient back onto the patient’s own problems. He could still get invited to all the cool parties, build his practice with their help, and get paid.

So, for decades afterward, any number of abused children, when sent to Freudian analysts, were systematically convinced that they were deluding themselves, that their memories were mere fantasy, and that they needed to focus on their own twisted minds. Mom and dad were largely off the hook – the patient may have issues with them, but, alas! we’re all slaves to sexual repression, so what else could one expect?

When this gaslighting was finally exposed, largely in the 60s and 70s, Freudian teachings and theory were of course excoriated from all the pulpits of academia, and his name became an insult and cautionary tale. Just kidding! Nope, his theories had proven far too useful for deflecting and misdirection, so we continue to use his language and understanding to this day.

Similarly, up until that fateful day in 2013, when ‘gender dysphoria’ was slipped into the DSM in the dark of night, responsible therapists, when presented with a child who claimed to be of the opposite sex, would gently poke around a little, to see what else was going on it the kids life. Were they being bullied? Were the boys pestering them for sex? Were daddy and mommy getting along and being kind to them? Did they understand that puberty was hard and confusing, but that people do get through it OK? Those therapists, had they received their training prior to the complete convergence of their field in academia, were aware that 1) the vast majority of kids presenting as dysphoric resolve their issues in favor of their actual sex if given time and support, and 2) that cases where that doesn’t happen tend to very miserable – all the usual problem: addiction, depression, suicide, etc. occur with much higher frequency and severity.

In other words, specifically, the post 2013 words, such careful and compassionate therapists were the hatiest haters and bigots imaginable! They dared to ask questions that might just point back to the ruined lives of these kids, ruined by divorce, abuse, and rootlessness. Under the new theory, even asking questions was hate and bigotry. Just like the victims of Freud, the new heroes of gender theory get to bear their pain alone, while having everyone around them explain everything away – and, desperately seeking relief and reinforced by the adults around them, the kids will embrace it!

But I said nothing of the sort.

3 Had a glorious Easter, which we will continue to celebrate right on through next Sunday, when we will have a huge backyard pizza party for the RCIA team, members of our Teams of Our Lady team, and the Feasts & Faith crowd. If everybody and their familes show up (unlikely), there would be a couple hundred people. I’ going to plan on like 75, spread out over the afternoon and evening. Got the trampoline cleaned and ready to go, will put up the hammock and hammock swing and kiddie toys, and basically have out backyard ready. Should be fun.

On a related note, I am making pastrami, which I have done a number of times before. Goes well with the ciabatta I will be whipping up for the pizza party. My previous efforts have run from pretty good to outstanding. This time, I splurged and bought 13 lbs of prime brisket from Costco, about 10.5 lbs after trimming, which I had to cut into three pieces in order to brine it. Decided to cook up the smallest piece after three days brining and one day of rinse (you let it sit in cold water for a day after you’ve brined it to leach out some of the salt, otherwise it tends to be too salty), as a test.

Very disappointing. Taste and texture were way off. I used a very simple rub, which just didn’t cut it, and the taste was bland. Crumbly, over-fatty when sliced. Let’s hope that another 4-5 days of brining and a better rub improve the other two.

4 Starting to do a little work for a potential start up, of which of course I am free to say nothing. Looks like it could be fun, at least. Wish me luck.

Author: Joseph Moore

Enough with the smarty-pants Dante quote. Just some opinionated blogger dude.

2 thoughts on “Easter Tuesday Update”

  1. 2. Wow. Very well explained. Iatrogenesis is becoming more and more rampant, I’d venture, especially in psychiatry. Certainly brings us back to the basics of “First do no harm,” with the exception “unless it keeps your career afloat”. Lots of what should be considered malpractice is making Freud-like innovators/markets lots of money. I see the same thing in The Church, Boy Scouts, politics, etc. “It wouldn’t be wise to make a firm stand against/for certain solid moral and theological principles:” It could affect the market share adversely (butts in pews, boys in uniform, votes, etc.).

    1. As another commenter mentioned, California is getting crazy … Yet, there are few other places that will afford you with what it can physically provide (A Cal. realtor said, “You sell the weather, not the property”) . Trust me, even in “backwater” Montana (too many Californians or displaced Washitonians? haha), it is crazy. Just had a patient tell me a neat proverb about a man at the city gate greeting newcomers. One said, “Hey, what are people around here like?” The gatekeeper said, “What are they like where you come from?” “They are warm, compassionate ….” says the newcomer. “I think you will find them that way here, too.” says the gatekeeper. Newcomer 2 asks the same original question and the gatekeeper asks him about people where he came from whereupon Newcomer 2 says they are backstabbing so and sos, etc. The Gatekeeper says people in his city are the same. Newcomer #1 who overhears this objects saying, “You just told me they were warm and compassionate.” I think you can fill in the lesson of the proverb by this time.

    Flyover territory may have less crazy, but it has spread quickly, especially being proselytized as strongly as it is by people, with the power of the pulpit, protecting their market share by creating more. My theory … It all happened when society decided love meant someone having an immediate good feeling toward you, rather than one looking out for your good. Parents/friends quit being parents/friends and became tolerant people “supporting” others in their destructive ways and apathetically justified this as loving while they abetted the destructive ways. The same patient of above proverb forbid his oldest daughter from coming back from college with her live-in boyfriend. This was told me by a younger daughter, and I initially couldn’t believe it (being conditioned by the culture like you mentioned in your Men in Black analogy) and disapproved, but now understand the love, courage, and wisdom this man showed, both to the oldest daughter and all the younger kids.

    3. Bless you for being an RCIA sponsor. Your Socratic teaching of your charge was interesting to read about. May he find blessing and consolation in The Church. Sounds like love-filled meticulous work provided for your Team. I am sure they will enjoy and appreciate it.

    4. Good luck. May His blessing fall softly on your endeavors.

    1. Thanks. I think it was Illich who tells the story of how anesthesia was immediately embraced by doctors, but sterilization and general rules of cleanliness took many decades to become standard. Anesthesia was good for business – people would put off even to death the pain of undergoing surgery, and anesthesia solved that problem. Doctor got paid. But sterilization and cleanliness only helped *the patient* and was nothing but work and expense for the doctor. Therefore, there was no hurry to adopt the practice, even though patients demonstrably did better when those practices were applied. But the doctor didn’t get paid any more, so why bother? Moral: it’s wise to consider who wins and who loses when innovations are proposed.

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