When Sojourners' CultureWatch editor asked me to write about my "favorite things," I gave a quick "Sure!" It's not often that I get to talk about McDonalds' new "Tangy Cajun Chicken Parts" and that delightful way the flavor seems to stick to the roof of your mouth, even though you'd rather it didn't.
But the editor pointed out that, no, she was more interested in the cultural aspects of my life, the books I'm reading, the films I've seen, what particular collections of poetry I walk past in the bookstore as I hurry to the magazine section that contains lots of easy-to-read photographs. So, culturally speaking, here are some of the more literary aspects of my life, printed in bold face, so if you just skim through it looks like I'm really smart:
Theological Ethics, Helmut Thielicke's brilliant three-volume series on the implied dialectic of freedom and bondage, occupies by far the largest amount of space on my bookshelf. Which is why I moved it the other day when I dropped my slinky. I occasionally use this device to entertain the pets—since my family has developed a keen lack of appreciation for my skills—and I was shocked to distraction by the sight of our rabbit attempting to "be romantic" with one of the cats. That's when I lost control of the slinky and it dropped onto the bookshelf behind several other books that I have never read but which also look good in boldface, including New Testament Greek for Dummies, John Calvin: Years of Laughter, and A Bunch of My Wife's College Textbooks.