The Past Week, and Praise for Pat Condell

It’s been a whirlwind week, meeting people from the textbook gig I had this year for a dinner party (complete with karaoke and a stop at a wine bar), frantic syllabus-drafting and a meeting with fellow teachers to discuss the new Listening & Speaking Course guidelines, followed by Indian food and beer, an end-of-semester lunch meeting with my department, where we wished the department head a good year off on sabbatical in San Francisco, followed by a meeting with Charles and Jeffery at Carne Station, and lots of meat and drink. Last night, Lime and I went on a futile search for batteries, and ended up wandering around Yongsan station. And today, we’re supposed to be meeting my old friends Kim and Chai.

And I’m leaving for Laos on Monday evening, so it’s not like I have no preparation to do, but it’s good, seeing all these people with whom I’d probably spend more time, if I (and they) could.

During the last meeting mentioned, at Carne Station, Jeffery, I think it was, mentioned a guy who sounded suspiciously like Pat Condell, or so I thought, and we agreed that this blogger we were talking about is very funny, smart, and worthwhile. Pat Condell — I assume it’s his name, since, after all, why would he make up the name “Pat Condell,” right? — is a YouTube videoblogger, and his discussions are about religion, from a very, um, skeptical, or, shall we say, heretical perspective. I’ve been subscribed to his feed for a while, and enjoy just about every post he uploads. Like a shining gem in the dreck of YouTube, really. Here’s a taste.

Yay for heretical viewpoints.

Me, I’ve always thought heresy was a good thing, ever since my uptight, self-righteous Christian Ethics teacher — Mr. McKay — accused me of the “modern heresies” of intellectualism, sarcasm, and snobbery. That I could make a grown man lose his cool over a cartoon, that meant to me that there was something wrong with his thinking. (I hadn’t anticipated a large number of people worldwide losing their cool over cartoons, back in 1991.)

But that’s another sordid story, and I wouldn’t want the tangent to muffle my praise for Pat Condell. Go check out the guy’s feed, and enjoy some of the previous posts there.

8 thoughts on “The Past Week, and Praise for Pat Condell

  1. Actually, Gord, I think that I was referring to Malcolm Pollack, of Waka Waka Waka. Charles knows his blog, too, but maybe we were all three speaking of different atheistic bloggers…

    Anyway, I also know Pat Condrell’s videos. They’re very well done — funny, direct, un-PC, and often devastating.

    But to the point at hand . . . I, too, enjoyed the meal, drinks, and conversation. Interesting to reflect that none of that would have happened if not for our blogging diversions.

    Just one small point, thoug . . . I’m “Jeffery,” with that diabolical ending “-ery” that everybody gets wrong because, dammit, that should be spelled “-rey”! Still, it’s really and truly “-ery.”

    Jeffery Hodges

    * * *

  2. College was a happy time for me, as the people who came out to give the St. Paul’s College pitch (our local Catholic college) were so unbelievably…lousy.

    The student in charge of the presentation went on for about 15 minutes about how hungover he was, how many keggers they had, and did he mention he was feeling really hungover? He might have thrown in something about networking, but you could tell what he really wanted was a little hair of the dog.

    Thanks to that lousy sales pitch, and my decision not to affiliate myself academically with the local Catholic institution, I had a genuinely great time at university.

  3. Jeffery,

    Sorry about the misspelling. I thought I had it right, and was careful to try remember as you mentioned it in the paper you delivered at MEMESAK.

    Ah, Waka Waka Waka. I thought we were talking about Condell. Waka Waka Waka’s okay but I’ve not really followed it closely.


    Wow, the Catholic College at U of S was a little more into it than that. I actually did some dramatic productions with them, and enrolled through the college for a few years — which let me choose their profs if I wanted, but didn’t limit me in any way — but it didn’t do me much good, and I think I stopped registering through STM later on.

    Hey, I think sucky Christian Ethics teachers are to be expected. It’s part of the territory, really. The one I had in junior high school was almost (but not quite) worse: a hardass disciplinarian who ended up, apparently, in Saskatoon working with “problem children,” where maybe he could get away with his power-trippy fetish for giving detentions for every minor infraction of school rules, not only the ones we all knew about but also the ones he was making up in his head. Of course, an incompetent teacher — even I could see it in the ninth grade — but once he hit vice principal, that hardly mattered, did it?

  4. I can’t really remember our grade seven catechism teacher, I do remember our homeroom teacher with the Tammy Faye make up. If I remember correctly, my grade eight catechism teacher was the lesbian gym teacher. And then I moved to Winnipeg, and had a new lesbian teacher who was really into Ayn Rand…

  5. Mark,

    Ah, I remember them all. Well, actually, not by name. I remember the bad ones by name, and the good ones by impression only. There was a great guy in St Joe’s in P.A., when I was there. And another great one at St. Mary’s when I did ninth grade there, who seemed unthreatened by my budding unbelief to the point where she rewarded me for outstanding academic work even when it (arguably) cast doubt on Gospel narratives. (I mentioned a gravesite in Kashmir, I think it was, where a number of Muslims and some Indian Christians claimed Jesus had fled after surviving a crucifixion attempt, and was buried when he died years later of old age. Most of my teachers would have slammed me for that, maybe even failed me, but she was like, hey, he tried to find sources beyond those in the textbook. (Even if it was Erich von Däniken, a source I’d never let a student use without a comment from me about the importance of using credibile sources.)


    No worries, comments are like that.


    Thanks! I’ve left a comment on your site. :)

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