Saturday Supplement

Another quick linkdump without much comment, due to packing and unpacking boxes being a priority this week.

The big issue in Ireland this week has been Warren Gatland not only not giving Brian O'Driscoll the captaincy for the final showdown with the Aussies this morning, but not actually picking him for the matchday squad... Now the thing is BoD did have a bit of a shocker last week, with a couple of wayward passes, but he is still the most creative player out there, and arguably the only leader they have left... I really don't understand why you wouldn't even have him on the bench as a game-changer... Instead Gatland has gone for blunt force... With Manu Tuilagi on the bench incase Jamie Roberts crock's himself again... No plan B, despite the fact that this approach has never served Wales well against Australia in the past... But never mind, I said I wasn't going to comment much, and, that said, let me encourage you to read BoD's response to being dropped, illustrating pointedly why he was the ideal Lion's captain... For a funnier take, have a look at the inevitable adaptation of that scene from "Downfall", given, as Tim McGowan said, that you can cope with the moral ambiguity of having Hitler as a Lions fan!

Maybe the whole Lion's story has prompted a bout of celtic gloom, but I appreciated this piece that WhyNotSmile signposted on Letters of Note... Not only is the first piece of advice 
"Live as well as you dare."
going to live on as a favourite quote, but the whole tenor of the piece would suggest that Sydney Smith was the living embodiment of what Adrian Warnock is getting at in his answer to the perennial "Why Me?" question... (Again a hat-tip to WhyNotSmile via FB) 

Also on Letters of Note, was this wonderful short letter by C. S. Lewis to a young fan giving a few tips on writing... Meanwhile on the NY Times an op-ed piece described Lewis as an "evangelical rockstar" before going on to suggest that this was because he was offering something more than the dry, propositional fare of many contemporary evangelical writers... Actually, if pressed I think that many of the prominent reformed evangelical leaders might have difficulties with Lewis, not only because of his beer-drinking, pip-smoking lifestyle, but because his theology does not fit into an easily categorised theological box... Just as Aslan is not a tame lion, Lewis is not a tame theologian!

I've written a lot about Foodbanks recently... but perhaps I've been wasting my time as Lord Freud thinks that they are generating demand rather than meeting a demand generated by benefit cuts (and the economic downturn)... Out of touch doesn't even begin to describe him...

Meanwhile, this turn by Basil McCrea at a Sinn Fein Summerschool was an interesting one... When I first watched it I was truly impressed by McCrea's willingness to enter onto  "enemy ground"  but also by the generosity of the introduction...  I was sad to find on returning to it that the introduction had been edited out... I hope this wasn't a deliberate act on McCrea's part...

But finally, it was good to see Professor Billy McWilliams blogging again as we head into the marching season... And perhaps he has come up with a creative and colourful answer to the flag protests...

That's all for now... 

But unlike the past 2 Saturdays, I'm not too sure that I want to cheer on the Lions this week...



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