Once in a saintly passion
I cried with desperate grief,
"O Lord, my heart is black with guile,
Of sinners I am chief."
Then stooped my guardian angel
And whispered from behind,
"Vanity, my little man,
You're nothing of the kind."

                        -James B.V. Thomson

I am good. I am fun. I am mean. I am wierd. I am different. I am I am I am...

I was in my English novel class this morning and we were talking about the conflict between the main characters, a married couple, in Middlemarch by George Eliot. My teacher started the class with a story about a man and a woman, strangers, who were sitting next to each other in an airport. The woman had bought some cookies and they were sitting on the chair in between them. The man reached over and grabbed a cookie and continued to read his book. The woman was indignant and snatched up a cookie empahtically. On and on, man and woman, they ate the entire package. When boarding was called the man got on the plane and the woman waited, reached into her bag for her ticket and found the package of cookies she had bought earlier.

She, rightfully, felt chagrin. And that's how the story ended. I wonder what she did after. Did she continue to think she had been right to eat the man's cookies because she thought they were hers? Did she find him and apologize? Did she beat herself up for how stupid she had been? Only the middle one is "right". She was wrong, but by focusing on herself she is still being proud.

There is so much beauty and goodness around us. Find something and add to the beauty.

There is so much suffering and sorrow around us. Find something and heal it.


  1. This post makes me want to eat cookies.
    Can you explain that poem to me? I feel like the meaning would be very useful...

  2. In my class we talked about how it is not just those who elevate themselves above others who are prideful, it is also the ones who when something happens they just beat themselves up instead of repenting and then letting go and moving on. This part of pride is self focused. Whereas the charity we need is self-forgetting, not self denigrating. I posted about this because I feel like I am just like the poet and the woman. I pass judgments and make mistakes and then I beat myself up. (Nick has a saying "Put down the spiritual knives." He stabs at his stomach while saying this which can look a little disconcerting if you don't know what he's referring to.) So I guess its meaning is that we should do what President Hinckley's father told him to do, "Forget yourself and go to work."

  3. Oh man I love that. Thanks for sharing.


Thanks for your nice words. I appreciate them so much.