A Liebster Award

I was recently nominated for an award by RaiBal at Rain’s Writing Realm. Her mental decline is evident because she neither nominated my blog ironically nor insincerely. She genuinely seems to enjoy something that is written on here. I am willing to give her a pass, however, because she was simply desperate to fill out the eleven-spot list and threw my blog’s name in a rush of adrenaline that obscured rather than heightened my failings.

Part of the process is that I must list 11 facts about myself.

1. I’m interested, but I’m not interesting.

2. I have several precious and precocious ideas about the world, chiefly that I’m interested.

3. I cannot create.

4. I am an odd bird.

5. I have divided my bed by a wall of books. I alternate between sleeping on the left and right side.

6. I am dully but duly religious. Or perhaps I’m duly but not dully religious. I leave that decision up to you, dear reader, but I am not both.

7. Sometimes I pick a random station on my radio. Preferably one that is static. Since the random static you find on your radio is, in part, cosmic background radiation I am listening to the oldest radio station in the universe. The first tune was produced at the beginning of time-space. It is a conceit but a harmless one. If you turn a television to a channel with no station you will see the same effect. Given the level of intelligence of most TV programs the static is about the only thing worth watching. 

8. People can be small-minded, pretentious, ignorant and arrogant. In short, they take after myself. See, arrogance.

9. There is not a ninth fact.

10. You do not occupy a unique place in the world, dear reader, and in the same vein I do not occupy a unique place in the world. We are not special snowflakes. We are not changing anything. We are animals dying on a plain.

11. In saying that you do not occupy a unique place in the world, I use the word ‘unique’ in its old-fashioned, almost, one might say, in its unique sense. This departs widely from the practice of our peers who belabor under all sorts of absurd uses. If I am to believe what I see on my morning Facebook, or hear on my daily run, people bring themselves to say or write of the “less unique,” the “more unique” and (echoing the playwright Arthur Miller) “the most unique.” I look nostalgically toward the once-upon-a-time (which, of course, is not a time at all) when “unique” was an exceedingly powerful and precise word. But helplessly I watch with dismay at the profound devaluation of the word. Another victim of sloppy semantic change. It has become a rough, lazy synonym for unusual or odd. Perhaps even ‘curious.’


Another 11, but of questions and answers.

1. Your favorite song – by whom – and why?  

Well, now that I’m thinking about it, I don’t think I have a favorite song. I suppose you can pick any song by alt-J and that would answer the question well enough.

2. Introvert or extrovert?

This is a question for people who know me. Like everyone else I’m the protagonist in the wonderful narrative of my life. I’ve assigned myself qualities but I would have no idea if they are noticed.

3. Name one thing you wish hadn’t been crushed or made obsolete by the Digital/Electronics Era?


4. Your favorite author and why?

Robert Graves. Writer of fiction and nonfiction. Translator. He is everything I am not but want to be.

5. Global warming or hoax?


6. What is the first thing you notice – even before meeting them – about a person you’re attracted to?

What they’re reading. Eyes.

7. Are you okay with the way the publishing world is evolving, or increasingly anxious? Why?

I’m not involved with the publishing world. As long as the odd person drops by here to chat about something I’m content.

8. Genie grants one wish. What will it be?

Give us back Abraham Heschel.

9. The one that got away. Regret or Valuable Lesson?

I have the one.

10. Fairy Wand offers a one-day trip to your past. Where are you going to go, and to fix/undo/change/find out what?

I am going to go to myself on the first day of high school and give my old self a picture of me today. I will (I would?) understand.

11. What one aspect about the past (as far back as you care to go) do you wish was still in the present?

The freedom from responsibility.

I must now choose 11 people who are similarly, if not as equally, dispirited by the world as I.

  1. NEO over at NebraskaEnergyObserver.
  2. K, the Aussie-American hybrid, over at K’s Pensees.
  3. David Watson over at his blog
  4. Hessianwithteeth at the eponymously named blog. Mostly for putting up with me.
  5. Mere Inkling because duh.
  6. Teilhard.
  7. The Pack over at the Book Foxes.
  8. The thesis student likely eaten by her thesis over at Oxfordphile.
  9. Josh W. over at Res Studorium et Ludorum.
  10. Pancakesandwildhoney over at Matt’s Task.
  11. Waltbox
  12. And because I’m going to pretend this award is about 12 people instead of 11 Ink Stains on a Reader’s Blog.


Now I have to come up with 11 questions. Hm.

  1. What is the best essay, or essay collection, you have ever read?
  2. Favorite fiction novel?
  3. Favorite nonfiction, of any bookish genre?
  4. What is the author I should know about but I do not?
  5. Why do you write?
  6. Is there such a thing as too much pie? And if so, why are you a terrorist?
  7. If you could elicit one completely truthful answer from everyone you met, with no social cost, what would the question be?
  8. What is an intellectual to you?
  9. Trigger-warnings. Explain.
  10. If you could insert one book or play or literary work into the Anglosphere’s high school curriculum what would it be? Would you?
  11. What is a blog I, Amyclae, should follow?

5 thoughts on “A Liebster Award

  1. I especially love number nine, and intend to plagiarize it some day. Thank you for the nomination. As you noted, I don’t get involved in awards, but out of respect to you, I’d be happy to answer your questions here…

    What is the best essay, or essay collection, you have ever read?
    – God in the Dock by C.S. Lewis. There are a few other collections of his essays that make enjoyable reading also.

    Favorite fiction novel?
    Alas Babylon by Frank made an impact on me. Also love Lewis’ The Great Divorce, although it’s fiction, but not a novel.

    Favorite nonfiction, of any bookish genre?
    Alternative history… especially dealing with the Roman empire.

    What is the author I should know about but I do not?

    If you haven’t read G.K. Chesterton, you should check him out. Because you may already recognize the name, perhaps J. Budziszewski’s nonfiction. Requires some thought, but well worth it. Rosemary Sutcliff introduced me to Rome, for which I remain ever grateful.

    Why do you write? My blog. My Doctor of Ministry research papers. Nonfiction about history, especially related to the military chaplaincy. I also have a couple fiction works under development… to be named in the future.

    Is there such a thing as too much pie? And if so, why are you a terrorist?

    Rhubarb… good, but one piece is enough. Chocolate Silk… definitely not.

    If you could elicit one completely truthful answer from everyone you met, with no social cost, what would the question be?

    What would it take for you to trust Jesus to be who he claimed to be?

    What is an intellectual to you?

    Great question. It’s probably less about intelligence than one’s attitude towards knowledge. I have to confess the word is often tainted by elitism and a sense of superiority. Many people possess great innate intelligence, but I suppose to become an “intellectual,” that must somehow be harnessed through one’s education.

    Trigger-warnings. Explain.

    Don’t think that’s something I would concern myself with, in terms of what I’m currently writing. Some folks may be offended, I suppose, but that wouldn’t be my intent, and would simply be due to their visceral rejection of the truth. 😉

    If you could insert one book or play or literary work into the Anglosphere’s high school curriculum what would it be? Would you?

    Red Badge of Courage. And yes, I would, because they need to know that British English is not the only variant that exists.

    What is a blog I, Amyclae, should follow?

    There are many, but two worth following, for quite different reasons, are

    • What a delightful surprise, Rob, for this slow Monday morning. You can plagiarize away, and don’t feel constrained to cite me. Nine is composed of four parts, I’m am sure of this, and approximately zero parts are fully organic to myself.

      I am acquainted with Chesterton, but not nearly as well as I should. And soon the Great Divorce will be mine… J. Budziszewski doesn’t ring any bells. I will fix that.

  2. Pingback: Liebster Award | ink stains on a reader's blog

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