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Life is tough. Nuns are tougher.

Tuesday, November 03, 2009

Speck Tater

Of course it has occurred to me to stick a witch hat on my head for Halloween and call it a day, costume wise. Okay....I've actually done that.

But then, everyone has an opinion. They say, "A nun shouldn't be dressing like a witch, a person who invokes Satan!"

And I say, "There are no witches, you silly goose, just people who wish they were witches or think they are witches. These people have no actual power other than perhaps leading the weak minded astray. And although that is a bad thing, we all understand that I am not a witch, I am not trying to lead anyone astray and that this is merely a hat posing as a costume for one day of some fun with candy. Go park your high horse somewhere else."

Truth be told, sometimes my sense of humor does give people a comedy hair cut as it slides over their heads. My witch hat is a joke on myself and my ability to scare little children senseless by merely showing up anywhere. I've often thought to myself, "All I need is a pointy hat."

So for one day a year, I go for it while I pass out candy.

To be honest, I've never known any nuns who dressed up for Halloween, save maybe putting on some type of hat. Apparently I lead a sheltered life, as a dear reader sent me this gem.

Holy Toledo! They even have tiny eyes glued on there! We had to laugh at the number of tiny eyes. Can you tell that nuns are always on a budget? "We have six doll eyes, Sister. You take three and I'll have three."

"Oh no, Sister, you have all six!"

"I wouldn't dream of it. If I have all six, how will anyone know you are a potato?"

Slow as I am, it took me several minutes to understand what those signs meant.

Poor sad old me.

And so, with All Souls Day and All Saints Day behind us, we press on:

Hi Sr. I just love your blog! I have a saint-match question for you, if you do not mind. I am expecting our 8th child in June (we just found out) and I'm worried we will not be able to pick out a name for him/her. It has gotten harder every time! Can you recommend a patron saint for choosing a child's name?

What an odd problem! Too many cooks? Here's the thing: You will be able to pick out a name for him/her. The child will not go through life nameless. No one will be referring to the child as "Child 8" or "Hey You".

You might need a patron saint for needless worry. St. Teresa of Avila, I think, the patron saint of perfectionists who are not perfect.

Meanwhile, I'm going to suggest St. Raymond Nonnatus who is the patron saint of tiny babies.

My thought process is thus: Babies are named when they are tiny, sometimes even before they are born. Whatever havoc is wreaked on a child by the name with which he is saddled starts right there.

There was a mayor of Pittsburgh, for example, whose name was Mayor Barr. He named his two children "Candy" and "Clark". I wish I were joking. What fun it must have been for Candy Barr and Clark Barr to introduce themselves all their lives!

Meanwhile, may I suggest that if you are actually at a loss for names you simply go to the list of saints of the Catholic Church. Your head will spin.

Sister, I'm in a quandary...There's a young man in my confirmation class. He's looking for a patron saint. He is an avid snowboarder...and he insists that this is in no way the same as skiing! So, St. Bernard and even JP II are out (although I assured him that if JP II were young today, he would definitely be a snowboarder!) Can you help me out please?

I'm not certain that my answer will actually please him anymore than yours does. He clearly doesn't understand the concept of patron saint extrapolation. There is no actual saint of snowboarders and the only way he will find one is through extrapolation, poor thing. Hopefully, one day he himself will become a saint and we will finally have a patron saint of snow boarding.

However, I do believe I can bring him one step closer to the right saint. Here is where my years on the coast of California finally pay off!

Surfers have a patron saint! They have officially adopted St. Christopher, who bore Christ across the water. They all wear St. Christopher medals!

Snowboarding is surfing on snow. I recommend St. Christopher. And I'm apparently not alone in my assessment.


Gardenia said...

I love reading you, Sister. I receive the St. Anne medal I ordered from your Etsy shop (which I found on your sidebar)and love it and wear it!

Angela said...

Is it weird that I smiled at the thought of the first advice-seeker naming child #8 Octavia/Octavio/Octavius/Octavian? (There was a Saint Octavian and a Saint Octavius, according to BehindTheName.com)

Anonymous said...

You are sooo funny! Thanks for all the good laughs I get from reading your blog and your spiritual wisdom! Keep up the great work - the world needs you!

Anonymous said...

Our friends DID name their eighth child (daughter) Octavia. If she had been a son, he would have been Octavius. It was settled very shortly after knowing someone new was on the way.

Kradcliffe said...

Why can't they name the baby "Child Number 8?"

I think "Octavius" or "Octavia" would be kinda cool!

Anonymous said...

I looked up St. Raymond and found that his last name "Nonnatus" means "not born" because he was delivered by c-section. That had to have been pretty rare in the 13th century, so it is possibly miraculous that he survived! (I'm choosing to overlook the fact that his mother actually died during the delivery...) Thank you, Sister, for introducing me to another saint. ;-)

Leigh said...

Sister...a link to this post has been sent to the motherhouse. I know these two amazing, spirited nuns will enjoy the "press".

opey124 said...

Could you clarify on what you mean exactly by "no witches" and it is all in their heads, please?

mph said...

Don't do it! If it's a girl you can get away with Octavia but if it's a boy - Octavius? Poor kid.
Opey124, I assume Sister means exactly what she said. How could it be made any clearer?

Fw Ken said...

RE: funny names. We had a Governor "Big Jim" Hogg here in Texas, and it was always said his children were Ima, Ura, and Will B.A. People would always come back and say that was a legend, but I sang at a college event where Miss Ima Hogg was granted an honorary degree, so I know she was real. Wiki says Ura was a myth. There was a "Will Hogg", but nothing about middle initials.


Anonymous said...

I met my husband while we were college students, and he was studying math. We married across cultures, so it wasn't so difficult finding an assortment of names to choose from, but from before the delivery to up to the minute that we had to come up with a name at the hospital, he went from little 'X' (the unknown) to little 'XY', then we positively had to decide.

Anonymous said...

"Truth be told, sometimes my sense of humor does give people a comedy hair cut as it slides over their heads."

I laughed at that as it happens to me all the time. I'll remember that I'm just giving comedy hair cuts.

I like Octavia and Octavian, which I
think would be more acceptable than Octavius. With all the Aidans, Dylans, Morgans, Austins, Justins, etc., running around today, Octavian could be a new trendy name. Besides, if they name the baby Mary Octavia or Joseph Octavian, the child can always opt to use his or her first name.

It's a fine old Catholic tradition,
as you know, Sister. A friend of mine comes from a family of three
Marys and three Josephs but all
used their middle names until one
decided to switch to Mary in her late 70s. Her siblings call her
Mary Betty, though. Old habits
die hard. (Are they also hard to
dye or have you tried that?)

Claudia's thoughts said...

Change the W to B and there are plenty of them out there. I do not believe in witches or luck. But there are a lot of people who are witchy...

For the most part I believe life is what you make it. We make choices and have to live with them. By the time a lot of folks figure that out it is too late....

Karina Fabian said...

"we all understand that I am not a witch, I am not trying to lead anyone astray and that this is merely a hat posing as a costume for one day of some fun with candy."

Thank you for this! Brava!

Anonymous said...

We have a local family by the last name of Hawk. There is a Tommy, Kitty and (alas) Jay. Yes we are in Kansas and he did attend KU, poor soul.