Today is the Memorial of Saint Justin, Martyr (died 165), and today is the beginning date of the 2016 Atlantic Hurricane Season.
Today’s Saint was born c. 100 at Nablus, Palestine; he called himself a Samaritan, but his father and grandfather were probably Greek or Roman, and he was brought up as a pagan. It seems that Justin had property, studied philosophy, converted to Christianity at the age of 30 by reading the Scriptures and witnessing the heroism and faith of martyrs, and devoted the rest of his life to teaching what he now considered the true philosophy, still wearing his philosopher’s gown to indicate that he had attained the truth. He probably traveled widely and ultimately settled in Rome as a Christian teacher. He used his philosophical and oratorical skills to dispute with pagans and explain the faith, becoming one of the first great Christian apologists. (A Christian Apologist is not one who apologizes for his faith; the word comes from the Greek for “verbal defence, speech in defence” and signifies one who presents reasoned bases for the Christian faith, defending the faith against objections.) All this naturally brought him to the attention of the authorities, and he died a martyr. Justin’s writings constitute a storehouse of early interpretation of the prophetic Scriptures, and he is the Patron Saint of orators and philosophers; for reasons unknown, he is invariably referred to as Justin Martyr. And today is the opening day of the 2016 Atlantic Hurricane Season, which runs from now through November 30; the climatological peak of activity is around September 10th each season. Across the entire Atlantic Basin for the six-month season, NOAA is predicting ten to sixteen named storms (including January’s Hurricane Alex), four to eight of those named storms becoming hurricanes, and one to four of those hurricanes becoming major hurricanes of at least Category 3 strength on the Saffir-Simpson Hurricane Wind Scale. Each of these ranges has a 70 percent likelihood of occurring, and indicate that activity will exceed the 30-year historical average for the Atlantic basin of 12 named storms, six hurricanes, and three major hurricanes. The seasonal forecast numbers include Hurricane Alex, a rare January hurricane that struck the Azores; though the official hurricane season spans the months from June through November, storms are occasionally formed outside those months (Tropical Storm Bonnie, which dumped rain all over South Carolina’s Memorial Day holiday this past weekend, was not included in the forecasts.) The most active season was 2005, during which 28 tropical cyclones formed, of which a record 15 became hurricanes (including Hurricane Katrina and Hurricane Rita). The least active season was the 1914 season, with only one known tropical cyclone developing during that year. Let us hope that this will be a calm hurricane season; of course, what defines a season for those living within reach of the Gulf or Atlantic Coasts is whether a given storm system impacts one personally.
Last night I set up a Tasker to make sure that when I start my MapMyWalk app in front of the house that my connection to my house Wifi will close.
I woke up at 7:30 am, and did my Book Devotional Reading. I then flipped to the new month on our three wall calendars, posted to Facebook that today was the start of Hurricane Season, and started the Weekly Computer Maintenance. I then put my spare Galaxy Note 4 battery into my phone, deleted my Google search history, cleared the browsing data on Wikipedia, Play Store, and Facebook, cleared out my phone call list and voice mails on my Galaxy Note 4, and did screenshots of my Galaxy Note 4 home screens. After I read the morning paper, I did my Internet Devotional Reading, finished the Weekly Computer Maintenance, and started the Weekly Virus Scan. Richard took the mount for the flagpole I no longer want off the front of the house, and put a box of stuff and the flagpole I did not want in the back seat of the car.
Leaving the house at 10:45 am, I went first to the Hit-n-Run, where I purchased my Powerball and Louisiana Lotto lottery tickets for tonight’s drawing. I then headed out of town; at Louisiana Church Interiors in Crowley (where I went in search of new religious statues; more anon), I picked up a fresh Rosary booklet and a fresh Stations of the Cross booklet, along with a medal of Our Lady, Undoer of Knots. In Scott I left off the box of stuff and the flagpole at the Goodwill. In Lafayette I ate lunch at Piccadilly Cafeteria, where I continued reading Julian’s Gospel: Illuminating the Life & Revelations of Julian of Norwich by Veronica Mary Rolf. I did not find any religious states that I wanted at Crossroads Catholic Books, and I then went to the Lafayette Public Library – Southside Branch and checked out Mr. Mercedes by Stephen King, which is my next Third Tuesday Book Club book. I then went to Barnes and Noble and put in some comfy chair time. I also went to Amazon and put some religious statues on my Wish List; I then looked at the new Nooks, but I am thinking that it would make more sense for me to upgrade to a tablet rather than another Nook.
I arrived back home at 4:00 pm, and found Richard taking a nap. I watched Jeopardy! at 4:30 pm, then got on the computer and did an Advance Daily Update Draft (I plan to keep about one month ahead). Richard went out to get some dinner (I was not hungry), and I rolled the loose change into folders to eventually take to the bank. At 7:00 pm I did my Exercise Walking (my Tasker worked great), and I walked 2.36 miles in 50 minutes and 44 seconds. (I do not know if my walking is doing me any good or not; I have not been trying to eat less junk food, so my weight is pretty much holding steady. However, I hope that my walking will mean that I won’t have trouble hiking National Park sites in New Mexico with Richard on our vacation.) When I came back from my walking, Richard had gathered up the trash and rolled the trash bin out to the curb for tomorrow’s trash pickup. And I will now finish this Daily Update, and do some reading before going to sleep.
Tomorrow is the Optional Memorial of Saints Marcellinus and Peter, Martyrs (died 304). I will do my Exercise Walking in the morning, and in the afternoon I will get my salad supplies and make my lunch salads for Friday and Sunday. Also, at some point tomorrow I will go through the box of Hurricane Supplies to see what we may need.
Our Parting Quote this Wednesday evening comes to us from Ann B. Davis, American actress. Born as Ann Bradford Davis in 1926 in Schenectady, New York, at the age of three her family moved to Erie, Pennsylvania. She entered the University of Michigan at Ann Arbor, intending to go into pre-med, but switched her major to drama after seeing her older brother’s performance in Oklahoma!. Graduating in 1948 with a degree in drama and speech, her first credited work was as a musical judge in the 1953 – 1954 season of ABC’s Jukebox Jury. After an uncredited role in the 1955 film A Man Called Peter, a friend’s boyfriend who was a casting director on NBC’s The Bob Cummings Show recommended her for the part of Bob’s secretary Charmaine “Schultzy” Schultz. She got the job, was in 153 episodes from 1955 through 1959, and was nominated for the Emmy Award for Outstanding Supporting Actress in a Comedy Series four times (winning twice). On February 9th, 1960, Davis received a star on the Hollywood Walk of Fame. In the 1965-1966 television season, she appeared as Miss Wilson, a physical education teacher at a private girls’ academy in San Francisco, in John Forsythe’s NBC sitcom The John Forsythe Show. In 1969 she got the part of Alice Nelson, the housekeeper for The Brady Bunch. Alice was best known for telling jokes (often self-deprecating, and usually interspersed with drier humor than the rest of the Brady clan), which were almost invariably met with multiple “Oh, Alice!” responses. Alice was also known for her sky blue housekeeping uniform, which she almost always wore. She also joined in the children’s games (including playing basketball), and went along with the family on vacations. In an apparent running gag with the character, strenuous physical activity would sometimes cause Alice to throw her back out, making her immobile for a short period of time. She had an identical cousin, Emma (also played by Davis), who was a retired master sergeant in the Women’s Army Corps. For most of the series, Alice dated Sam Franklin (Allan Melvin), who ran the local butcher shop. In the final 1974 season, Alice and Sam were engaged. The Brady Bunch went into syndication after 1974 and became an iconic show of that decade. (Former Louisiana Governor Bobby Jindal’s real first name is Piyush; born in Baton Rouge, Louisiana in 1971 as the son of Indian immigrants, he wanted an American first name, and took the name of Bobby from the show.) For a period in the 1960s and 1970s Davis was known for her appearances in television commercials for the Ford Motor Company, particularly for the mid-sized Ford Fairlane models. Davis was also featured in commercials for Minute Rice until the mid-1980s. In 1976 she sold her home in Los Angeles to move to Denver, Colorado, where she joined an Episcopal community led by Bishop William C. Frey. The community later relocated to Ambridge, Pennsylvania. Davis had long been a volunteer for the Episcopal church, working at the General Convention, attending services at churches around the country, and was not cloistered in the community. Meanwhile, The Brady Bunch spawned several specials, short-lived television series, and movies, and Davis played Alice Nelson in most of them. In the early 1990s she focused on theater. She performed in a production of Arsenic and Old Lace, and was in a world tour production of Crazy For You. In 1994 Davis published Alice’s Brady Bunch Cookbook, with Brady Bunch inspired recipes. She never completely retired from acting; in her later years she was the celebrity spokeswoman in several Shake ‘n Bake commercials, and later appeared in several disposable mop commercials for Swiffer. Excepting 1995’s The Brady Bunch Movie (in which she played a trucker named Schultzy), her last role was in a 1997 episode of Something So Right (died 2014): “I remember my first ‘demographic report’ on the ‘Brady Bunch.’ I was with a friend, who told her little girl, ‘honey, you remember Shultzy?’ The girl said, ‘that’s not Schultzy, that’s Alice!’ I knew that we were coming along…. Today, people with three-piece suits and briefcases suddenly become twelve when they’re walking by me. That just breaks me up and I love it!”