“It’s not what you look at that matters, it’s what you see.”

– Henry David Thoreau

Thoreau encourages us to look past and through what is visible in order to create a greater and often more personalized vision for ourselves.

An artist looks at regular objects and transforms them into art using his unique talent and vision.

Humanists look at the world around them and see ways of understanding it.

Engineers look at raw materials and see ways of turning them into physical improvements.

Thoreau urges each of us to use our skills and talents to create visions for ourselves by exchanging a look for sight.

“Time is precious but truth is more precious than time.” – Benjamin Disraeli

British nobleman and former Prime Minister indicates that the precious nature of time holds the precious of truth.

Time holds truth because it encapsulates it. Truth is revealed as time passes.

This is apparent in our limited human nature, which does not realize/recognize the truth until the moment that reveals it has passed us by.

Disraeli emphasizes our desire to learn the truth in the passing of time, giving truth the ultimate value.

Here’s to a year of beautiful truths to be revealed!

Happy New Year 2019

“May you live all the days of your life.” – Jonathan Swift

What does it mean to live all the days of your life?

Swift indirectly highlights the importance of living each day of each lifetime.

All our days are the composite of time that add up to a lifetime.

Each of us decides what to do within each day that we live.

As each day passes, we aim to grow in a greater understanding of life as a philosophy that we create for ourselves.

When I came across this quote from Swift, I was initially struck by the simplicity of his universal wish.

But a deeper look reveals his desire to encourage us to look more deeply into our own lives for meaning and fortitude, each day at a time.

I hope you carry Swift’s wish into 2019 and beyond.

To begin anew…

In The Book of Awakening, Mark Nepo encourages his readers to “use the old to build the new.”

And so “A Reader’s Story” continues, with daily quotes and “mini critical responses” instead of daily words. My love of the humanities as well as my experimental, creative side will continue to appear weekly.

Please peruse the website for updated photos of el Caesarino (the coolest cat in Charm City) and the iconic Harbor, specifically Fells Point.

I will continue teaching, writing and translating as my professional occupations in 2019, but all three will now take place out of the academic setting. A salute and heartfelt thanks goes out to the amazing professors, students and colleagues I met along the way. Please keep in touch!

I have started a manuscript about how solid study skills prepare us not only for academic success, but for life beyond the classroom. A memoir written in “flash fiction” (prose-poetry) remain a possibility, as does a story or two…

I have also started a Baltimore Literature and Writing MeetUp so if you are in the area, please check us out!

Sign up for email updates, they are in the works!

See you tomorrow for brunch and our first quote of 2019!

Blessings to all as well begin anew…

Small Hiatus

I will be taking a small break until approximately the start of December 2018.

I am preparing a conference paper and academic book review in the upcoming months.

This weekend I depart for the writers’ retreat I attended last year.

I hope to return with fresh ideas for A Reader’s Story.

Please leave thoughts or suggestions.

Emerson at Loyola

Yesterday, as the week closed at Loyola, I stumbled across a part of campus I had never been to before and found the following quote by Ralph Waldo Emerson painted on the wall:

“The great object of education should be commensurate with the object of life.”

I think what Emerson means is that education should lead us somewhere; not so much in the immediate sense of a career path, but to a greater purpose.

A truly well-rounded liberal arts education in the traditional sense prepares students for life, as I had made reference to Fareed Zakariah’s speech and book in starting my blog over a year and a half ago.

For educators, the object of life is to pass information and a love of their subject forward.