It’s a funny thing. I hate cold. I really hate ice – when I was little I was pathologically afraid of it. However, I love snow. When I told Baby this on Wednesday he said it was something like in Groundhog Day where Phil tells Andi McDowell’s character, “You hate boats, but you love the ocean.” I don’t know about that, though it was cute that Baby knows that movie so well. Regardless, I like snow. I like how beautiful it is as it’s coming down. I like how it covers everything, making even the most commonplace things look beautiful and mysterious. I like how it settles over the house like a blanket, and suddenly everything is extra warm. I like how it clings to the tops of tree limbs and branches, outlining them against the sky. I like that every snowflake is absolutely unique.
I don’t even really mind shoveling snow. I’ve been doing a lot of that the last couple of days. Johnsy’s wheelchair isn’t equipped to handle large amounts of snow (there are no snow tires for wheelchairs), so the sidewalks have to be absolutely clear so she can easily leave the house. This means not only the path out to the curb, but out into the street as well. On Wednesday Johnsy needed to leave the house early, so I spent a chunk of my morning shoveling instead of writing my final paper for Women & Philosophy (Modesty as a Feminist Resistance Value Rising From an Embodied Experience of Female Sexuality), so I ended up calling in late to work instead. Today thankfully Johnsy didn’t have to go anywhere until this afternoon, so I could shovel after I came home from my Aquinas oral exam.
That exam was “very good,” btw. Fr. Clause said so. I had been scared about this exam. I’ve never done an oral exam before. Fr. Clause had said that we should bring with us one article from the Summa which we would explain to him without benefits of notes of any kind, though we should have a copy of the article for ourselves and for him. Then he would give us another article from the Summa, chosen at random, which we would get to explain cold. That was the whole exam, and he scheduled our individual appointments two hours apart. Yeah, a little intimidating. The article I prepared was ST I, Q 39, Article 8: Whether the essential attributes are appropriated to the persons in a fitting manner by the holy doctors? “Persons” here refers to the thee Persons of the Trinity: Father, Son, and Holy Spirit. The “holy doctors” are the Fathers of the Church, specifically St. Hilary and St. Augustine – the Big, Bad Boys of Catholic theology. This question is picking apart the phrases which these guys have used to describe the Trinity, sometimes word by word, and deciding whether or not Aquinas thinks they’re appropriate (a pretty audacious thing to do when you think about it). It’s a long article, densely philosophical and complex. I chose it because right in the middle Aquinas discusses his definition of beauty when he’s showing how the attribute of “species” or “beauty” is appropriately applied to the Son. Anyway, after we had worked our way through everything, Fr. Clause decided that since this Article was so demanding I didn’t need to do a second one.
I came home after the exam, shoveled the sidewalks and ate lunch. Then I was tired so I laid down for a nap. I do love naps, even more than I love snow. I woke up again without an alarm, checked my e-mail, blogged a little, and now I think I’m going to go change my books at the library. Yeah, life is pretty good today.