Re: So...less Catholic than the Pope?

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As an unlapsed Catholic, I'm also curious. On the one hand, there have been various rites (in the near East, mostly) with married clergy for centuries. This hasn't changed the Roman rite at bit. On the other hand, this is new and happening in an area central to the western Church. I also wonder what this will mean for Pittsburgh, given than much of the Anglican split was driven by local events.


Posted by: Moby Hick | Link to this comment | 10-22-09 7:43 AM
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And it's a "chasuble" not a jersey. Priests are about the only people around here who don't wear a Steeler jersey on Sunday.


Posted by: Moby Hick | Link to this comment | 10-22-09 7:47 AM
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1: The NPR piece made that same point about near East churches, along with the fact that these new Catholic-oriented Anglicans are in areas with much heavier coverage by the Western media, implying the change could be much more front-and-center.


Posted by: Stanley | Link to this comment | 10-22-09 7:53 AM
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2: I bet they do after noon. And I bet they get mentioned in sermons. Certainly the Yankees did when I was a kid.


Posted by: oudemia | Link to this comment | 10-22-09 7:58 AM
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3: I missed the NPR story. No speakers at work.


Posted by: Moby Hick | Link to this comment | 10-22-09 8:00 AM
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4: satanists!


Posted by: Sifu Tweety | Link to this comment | 10-22-09 8:03 AM
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Another issue that a BBC article raised about this is that there are two kinds of conservatives in the Anglican communion (and I guess specifically in the Church of England) -- Anglo-Catholics and Evangelicals. The Anglo-Catholics now have an easy way out of Anglicanism, and some Evangelicals aren't happy about potentially losing their allies in the struggle with the liberals, feminists, and homos.

My pretty ignorant impression is that the conservatives in the Episcopal Church USA are mostly of the Evangelical variety. I wonder whether that's accurate, and to what extent U.S. conservative Episcopalians are going to convert. There does seem to be a phenomenon of U.S. Evangelicals converting to conservative Roman Catholicism -- Sam Brownback for example.


Posted by: Bave Dee | Link to this comment | 10-22-09 8:07 AM
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Actually, Bave the Anglican Evangelicals are mostly outside of the U.S., many in England (note that I said England and not the UK; Scotland's Episcopalians are quite liberal).

Anglo-Catholicism is a complicated phenomenon, because it's had different strands. Some times you see it in upper middle class settings, but a lot of the early Anglo-Catholic male priests, many of whom were gay--and Anglo-catholicism is super-gay--were willing to move into the inner city where their married colleagues were not. So, there's also been an almost socialist tendency in it.


Posted by: Bostoniangirl | Link to this comment | 10-22-09 8:19 AM
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My theory was that this was aimed in large part at Anglicans in Africa. Is that not the case?


Posted by: Sifu Tweety | Link to this comment | 10-22-09 8:22 AM
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I haven't listened to the Morning Edition piece yet, but I heard one onAll Things Considered yesterday by my beloved Sylvia Poggioli which suggested that the ecumenical folks at the Vatican weren't too happy about this.

http://www.npr.org/templates/story/story.php?storyId=113977725

that linkmight not work. I tried to type it in using html, and on preview, I got a line which said "no follow".


Posted by: Bostoniangirl | Link to this comment | 10-22-09 8:24 AM
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Bostoniangirl, how would you classify the conservative Episcopalians like those big churches in Virginia that are so upset about the gay clergy thing? Little snippets in articles I've read about "we believe what the Bible says" have set off my Evangelicaldar, but I don't have any direct experience of these people.


Posted by: Bave Dee | Link to this comment | 10-22-09 8:25 AM
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The book is already an Unfogged fave, but really, if you haven't, go read The Towers of Trebizond. (It has a very hilarious take on the different strains of Anglican.)


Posted by: oudemia | Link to this comment | 10-22-09 8:26 AM
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11: Bave, I think you are right about those churches in VA.


Posted by: oudemia | Link to this comment | 10-22-09 8:27 AM
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9: I'm sure that no big policy change is considered by the Vatican without giving thought to Africa. It's the big growth area. But, given that many of the Episcopalians in the U.S. are choosing to affiliate with African Anglicans because they are more traditional, I'm not sure they are expecting many African converts out of this.


Posted by: Moby Hick | Link to this comment | 10-22-09 8:33 AM
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Speaking of the gayness of Anglo-Catholicism, I remember a couple years ago hearing a recording of Holst's setting of Rossetti's "In the Bleak Midwinter" performed by the St. Higgins-upon-somethingorother cathedral choir and all I could think was "Some English choir queen absolutely lives for the annual performance of this song."


Posted by: Bave Dee | Link to this comment | 10-22-09 8:33 AM
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There are definitely more Evangelical ones in Virginia of the type you describe.

Anyway, the funny thing about the situation in England is that the Evangelicals are okay with women as long as they're not preaching to men (following Paul), but they're very uncomfortable with gays. Anglo-Catholics don't really talk about homosexuality, but they're very opposed to the ordination of women, because they think it violates the apostolic succession given that none of Jesus's core disciples were women.


Posted by: Bostoniangirl | Link to this comment | 10-22-09 8:35 AM
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Anyway, this isn't completely new. Catholics have welcomed U.S. Episcopal priests in the past who were married. There's a guy in Boston who was the rector of All Saints Ashmont who tried to bring his whole church over, but the parish's vestry wasn't too happy with that, and the diocese wasn't too keen to lose the property.

Unfortunately, this guy kind of embezzled some money. So, the church, which has a fabulous music program, can no longer afford an assistant priest(though the boys in the choir are paid), and they don't pay for a janitor or a secretary any more.

Frankly, I'm not sure why they wanted him, but I think it was Cardinal Law who accepted him in, so, you know.


Posted by: Bostoniangirl | Link to this comment | 10-22-09 8:39 AM
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15: Yes, I'm hoping that somehow this gets us better music. Our choir and organists are very good, but you don't see that in all parishes.


Posted by: Moby Hick | Link to this comment | 10-22-09 8:39 AM
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15: CA was raised in an Anglo-Catholic church (more or less) where he was head chorister and is now basically a choir queen (he doesn't sing anymore, just listens).

Incidentally, I was told recently that the AGO -- American Guild of Organists -- refers to itself (affectionately) as "Another Gay Organist."


Posted by: oudemia | Link to this comment | 10-22-09 8:43 AM
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I never see our organists. They are way in the back, up in the loft. But at most smaller parishes I've been in, the organists are women.


Posted by: Moby Hick | Link to this comment | 10-22-09 8:45 AM
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re: 15

Heh, just checking out versions of that on Spotify. Quite big differences between recordings, but I get what you mean.


Posted by: nattarGcM ttaM | Link to this comment | 10-22-09 8:46 AM
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ms bill, with a theology degree from Notre Dame, told me at breakfast that welcoming Anglican priests who are married is an implicit swipe at women in the Church -- that the married Anglican clergy mean more to the Catholic hierarchy than women already in the Church who long have been seeking a larger role. "The ranks of Tuscany could scarce forbear to cheer."


Posted by: bill | Link to this comment | 10-22-09 8:47 AM
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17: The things named "All Saints" annoy me. Pick one! Is it so hard?


Posted by: Cryptic ned | Link to this comment | 10-22-09 9:00 AM
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19: There are two organists at my church--both gay and married.


Posted by: Bostoniangirl | Link to this comment | 10-22-09 9:00 AM
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Gay men, if that wasn't clear.


Posted by: Bostoniangirl | Link to this comment | 10-22-09 9:00 AM
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23: Given all of the parishes in this area, I think they did run out of saints. At least ones that anybody has heard of.


Posted by: Moby Hick | Link to this comment | 10-22-09 9:02 AM
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20: They could be lesbians. Also, the ones with really good music and good (paid/highly trained choirs) have been, in my limited experience, men more often than women.


Posted by: Bostoniangirl | Link to this comment | 10-22-09 9:02 AM
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I sometimes wonder if my late grandfather, who was the volunteer organist for his church for fifty+ years as well as the high-school band director, was gay. He fit a lot of the stereotypes, including having five kids.


Posted by: Bave Dee | Link to this comment | 10-22-09 9:04 AM
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27: I've never heard of a Catholic parish paying a choir. Where I've been, they may have a paid music director or organist (or both), but even that isn't a given. A good director and enough voices to blend usually works pretty well from my experience. However, I've been told I have a tin ear.


Posted by: Moby Hick | Link to this comment | 10-22-09 9:07 AM
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St. Paul's in Cambridge has a choir school. Boys who sing in the archdiocese's boys choir go there. They get 4-year full-tuition scholarships, but they're really good.


Posted by: Bostoniangirl | Link to this comment | 10-22-09 9:21 AM
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28: He fit a lot of the stereotypes, including having five kids.

I haven't heard that one before. What's that about? Proving manly heterosexuality or somesuch?


Posted by: the Other Paul | Link to this comment | 10-22-09 9:23 AM
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31: Where I've been, you'd get the scholarship for football or basketball.


Posted by: Moby Hick | Link to this comment | 10-22-09 9:23 AM
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Well, the school is only the boys who are in the choir, and they work fir their bread. Thet perform with Symphony sometimes.


Posted by: Bostoniangirl | Link to this comment | 10-22-09 9:30 AM
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Our choir and organists are very good

Where do you go, Moby? I thought you once mentioned having gone to Mr. Rogers' church, but he wasn't Catholic.


Posted by: JRoth | Link to this comment | 10-22-09 9:36 AM
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Oh my God! My grandfather was a volunteer choir director with five kids! Was he gay?


Posted by: Jackmormon | Link to this comment | 10-22-09 9:38 AM
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34: I have no idea where Mr. Rogers went to church. I usually go to St. Paul in Oakland, but sometimes to Sacred Heart (Shadyside) or St. Rosalia (Greenfield).


Posted by: Moby Hick | Link to this comment | 10-22-09 9:40 AM
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What used to be the church closest to where I live has been a Jewish day school since before I moved to Pittsburgh. That building has always looked more Methodist or Presbyterian than Catholic to me.


Posted by: Moby Hick | Link to this comment | 10-22-09 9:49 AM
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As ajay and I mentioned once before, in the UK, Catholic churches usually have modern architecture.


Posted by: nattarGcM ttaM | Link to this comment | 10-22-09 9:56 AM
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I have no idea where Mr. Rogers went to church.

This comment has led to these previously unbeknownst-to-me facts: Fred Rogers was both an ordained Presbyterian minister and a vegetarian, at least according to wikipedia.


Posted by: Stanley | Link to this comment | 10-22-09 9:56 AM
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There is some interesting, if slightly technical (and Jesus-y), discussion of the Anglican-to-Catholic stuff here.

My minister father refers to Episcopalians as "the competition" (jokingly, I swear; he was very fond of a little theological bookstore attached to the Episcopalian church in Amherst, MA).


Posted by: Flippanter | Link to this comment | 10-22-09 9:57 AM
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39: I knew the first of those facts, but not the second. The Children's Museum has a big Mr. Rogers' exhibit. There's the castle, the trolley, the tree and the clock.


Posted by: Moby Hick | Link to this comment | 10-22-09 9:59 AM
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I have no idea where Mr. Rogers went to church.

Corner of Forbes & Murray. He kept an apartment across from Ascension on Ellsworth, so he went there sometimes during the day (the apartment was basically a place to get away from filming - supposedly it was full of puppets and/or stuffed animals, but that's more of a rumor).


Posted by: JRoth | Link to this comment | 10-22-09 10:13 AM
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My friend's dad was in fact Mr Roger's neighbor when he was a kid. And his paperboy.


Posted by: oudemia | Link to this comment | 10-22-09 10:20 AM
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Before Mr. Rogers was a Green Beret or after?


Posted by: Moby Hick | Link to this comment | 10-22-09 10:23 AM
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42: I went to that church a few times! Don't remember a single Misterogers-related thing there.


Posted by: Cryptic ned | Link to this comment | 10-22-09 10:28 AM
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There's a good mystery/thriller called "In the Bleak Midwinter", by Julia Spencer-Fleming; first of a series which I haven't read.


Posted by: clew | Link to this comment | 10-22-09 10:36 AM
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45: It did used to be on the trolley line.


Posted by: Moby Hick | Link to this comment | 10-22-09 10:42 AM
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I'm not sure I see how allowing clergy to marry is actually liberalizing in any real way.


Posted by: M/tch M/lls | Link to this comment | 10-22-09 10:48 AM
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48: Are you thinking that it might be advantageous to the Church to relax one of the many restrictions on potential membership of its ecclesiastical and political hierarchy, without necessarily increasing the liberalism of that hierarchy or of the Church itself, or do you have something else in mind? I don't think I disagree with the former, except insofar as opening the ranks of the authoritative class is inherently liberalizing.


Posted by: Flippanter | Link to this comment | 10-22-09 10:59 AM
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Bave might be interested to hear that there's at least one Anglican Catholic church in Albuquerque. It's on Tramway around Eubank or so, an area of town that might be described as "Megachurch Row with Trader Joe's thrown in sort of randomly."


Posted by: teofilo | Link to this comment | 10-22-09 11:26 AM
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50: Thanks. I spent 8 months of my life looking for the best place to put in a Trader Joe's in Albuquerque. Randomly! Aaagh! Do you have any idea how many sites were considered? How many variables considered in determining the site? Randomly?!?


Posted by: Opinionated Trade Joe's Consultant | Link to this comment | 10-22-09 11:33 AM
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Good thing you were working for Trade Joe's, so your determination didn't affect the placement.


Posted by: Cryptic ned | Link to this comment | 10-22-09 11:34 AM
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They're actually opening a second one in a much more reasonable place.


Posted by: teofilo | Link to this comment | 10-22-09 11:34 AM
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Really, the reason both the megachurches and the Trader Joe's are where they are is that it's an area where huge parcels of land are really cheap. So not really random at all. The contrast is still funny, though.


Posted by: teofilo | Link to this comment | 10-22-09 11:35 AM
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That was me. I've never been to Albuquerque. I'm just trying to work on channeling middle-management rage, in case I get promoted.


Posted by: Moby Hick | Link to this comment | 10-22-09 11:37 AM
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which suggested that the ecumenical folks at the Vatican weren't too happy about this

I'm inclined to take what she said at face value. When Levada was archbishop here, his office showed a willingness to enforce narrow doctrinal interpretations to no constructive end (specifically, quashing a Latin liturgy for a small congregation). I see no reason to see him as anything other than a company man, which would seem to be a necessary qualification for his current job.

I'm not sure I see how allowing clergy to marry is actually liberalizing in any real way

In that it accords equal status among the clergy to people who haven't renounced sex, it would go a long way to confronting the sex-negative ideal of sacerdotal celibacy, and I don't doubt that there are plenty of Catholics who see it as the first step on the slippery slope to the ordination of women. But I'm sure that they have nothing to worry about; this seems to be all about shoring up Catholic influence among disaffected Anglicans, and the allowance for married priests is a limited compromise. As mentioned above, exceptions have been made, and there are (a very small number of) married priests. I could be wrong—Ratzinger could end up the Gorbachev of popes—but I doubt it.

Some English choir queen absolutely lives for the annual performance of this song

I didn't live for it, but I loved singing it every year. It's undeniably great.


Posted by: Jesus McQueen | Link to this comment | 10-22-09 11:45 AM
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Megachurches are the U2 of early 21st century American amateur sociology,* but I am really looking forward to the decade or more of schism, recrimination, litigation and Republican politicians' not knowing which direction to jump that will follow the deaths of the current generation of charismatic, polo-shirt-wearing petty suburban popes. Every subdivisian an Orvieto!

* Not sure what I mean by that, just in an anti-U2 sort of mood.


Posted by: Flippanter | Link to this comment | 10-22-09 11:49 AM
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As an Episcopalian, these things get complicated. "Anglo-Catholic" can mean either a liturgical,theological, or a political attitude, but the three strains don't align together. That is, there's a liturgical difference between "high" (superformal, theoretically "Catholic") and "low" (less formal, theoretically more Protestant) that doesn't map at all onto theological or political differences. My current chuch is both extremely "low" liturgically and extremely politically and theologically liberal. The church I went to before that was liturgically very "high" but even more politically liberal. There are "low" politically conservative parishes, and, famously, a parish in DC that's formal, theologically conservative, and politically full of prominent right-wingers.

In general, though, there is very little real Evangelism in the ECUSA. Even the folks in Virginia or Pittsburgh are more like grouchy traditionalists than true evangelists.


Posted by: robert halford | Link to this comment | 10-22-09 11:49 AM
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||

Since this is the religion thread, I'll just share this anecdote from my life this week. My little brother (who is a long, entertaining, and pseudonymity compromising story) is applying to rabbinical school, despite not having a prayer (ha!) of getting in. He asked if I'd look over his essays for him, and I said I would. The third essay question asks the applicant to describe what they think the greatest threat to the Reform movement is, and what the role of the rabbinate is in addressing it. He wrote that the biggest threat facing the movement is the danger to the survival of Judaism posed by intermarriage and acceptance of diversity. My wife's not Jewish.

I told him that he should probably find someone else to review his essays for him.

|>


Posted by: emdash | Link to this comment | 10-22-09 11:51 AM
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59: Ouch.


Posted by: Flippanter | Link to this comment | 10-22-09 11:53 AM
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Megachurches and Trader Joe's probably have a significant overlap in patrons.


Posted by: Bave Dee | Link to this comment | 10-22-09 11:54 AM
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He wrote that the biggest threat facing the movement is the danger to the survival of Judaism posed by intermarriage and acceptance of diversity.

Egads, emdash. That sucks. Also, that answer would shock most reform congregations.


Posted by: oudemia | Link to this comment | 10-22-09 11:54 AM
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Yeah, seriously unReform, dud.e


Posted by: Bave Dee | Link to this comment | 10-22-09 11:55 AM
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dude.


Posted by: Bave Dee | Link to this comment | 10-22-09 11:55 AM
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59: Isn't there a rabbinical school equivalent of the 'safety school'?


Posted by: Moby Hick | Link to this comment | 10-22-09 11:56 AM
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What is the greatest threat to the Reform movement? asked the shamefully ignorant Protestant.


Posted by: Flippanter | Link to this comment | 10-22-09 11:56 AM
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There aren't a whole lot of Rabbinical schools out there.


Posted by: teofilo | Link to this comment | 10-22-09 11:57 AM
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66: Iran.


Posted by: teofilo | Link to this comment | 10-22-09 11:57 AM
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67 to 66. Maybe.


Posted by: Moby Hick | Link to this comment | 10-22-09 11:58 AM
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And Matthew Yglesias.


Posted by: teofilo | Link to this comment | 10-22-09 11:58 AM
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Perhaps the reform movement is its own worst enemy?


Posted by: Sifu Tweety | Link to this comment | 10-22-09 11:58 AM
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71: Sifu = Gorby?


Posted by: Moby Hick | Link to this comment | 10-22-09 11:59 AM
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I don't know much about the internal machinations of the Reform movement, but in my experience with organized Judaism generally emdash's brother's answer is depressingly common. For many seminaries it's probably one of a small number of "right" answers to give.


Posted by: teofilo | Link to this comment | 10-22-09 11:59 AM
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68 and 70 being the other "right" answers.


Posted by: teofilo | Link to this comment | 10-22-09 12:01 PM
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Yglesias is Jewish? I had no idea. He never writes about himself. What high school and college did he attend?


Posted by: Flippanter | Link to this comment | 10-22-09 12:03 PM
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famously, a parish in DC that's formal, theologically conservative, and politically full of prominent right-wingers.

Which one are you thinking of, halford?


Posted by: Bostoniangirl | Link to this comment | 10-22-09 12:06 PM
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If anybody knows people in the Rabbinical schools, I have one suggestion from an outsider. It would be much easier for gentiles to keep track of things if they'd put up signs for the holidays. For example, a few "Happy Sukkot" signs would stop me from having to say things like "the one with the sheds covered in burlap."


Posted by: Moby Hick | Link to this comment | 10-22-09 12:07 PM
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76 -- St. Paul's K Street.


Posted by: robert halford | Link to this comment | 10-22-09 12:09 PM
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If anybody knows people in the Rabbinical schools, I have one suggestion from an outsider. It would be much easier for gentiles to keep track of things if they'd put up signs for the holidays. For example, a few "Happy Sukkot" signs would stop me from having to say things like "the one with the sheds covered in burlap."

I think you might want to talk to the sign companies about that one. Or maybe Hallmark.


Posted by: teofilo | Link to this comment | 10-22-09 12:11 PM
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Yglesias is Jewish? I had no idea. He never writes about himself. What high school and college did he attend?

What I've always really wondered is what his father does for a living.


Posted by: Criminally Bulgur | Link to this comment | 10-22-09 12:12 PM
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We're not supposed to wish people a "Happy Yom Kippur," right? No reason. Just asking. For a friend.


Posted by: Flippanter | Link to this comment | 10-22-09 12:12 PM
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73 is definitely true--despite the significant percentage of interfaith families in their congregations, most (many?) Reform rabbis won't perform interfaith weddings, and my understanding is that if you are an aspiring rabbi whose significant other isn't Jewish you shouldn't even bother applying.

My brother's response to my taking offense was to say, "Oh, I didn't mean *your* marriage. You guys are great!" which is classic.


Posted by: emdash | Link to this comment | 10-22-09 12:13 PM
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82: It would have been worse if he'd said something like "Your wife is so hot, who wouldn't make an exception. Sometimes I come over and just stare."


Posted by: Moby Hick | Link to this comment | 10-22-09 12:15 PM
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82: emdash's spouse is one of the good ones.


Posted by: togolosh | Link to this comment | 10-22-09 12:16 PM
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If he had to choose between the Reform movement and your marriage... well, it would certainly be tough.


Posted by: Sifu Tweety | Link to this comment | 10-22-09 12:17 PM
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81: I vaguely wonder about this every year -- there must be some stereotyped Yom Kippur greeting, but obviously not a cheerful one. Is something like wishing people an easy fast conventional, or is that just something I speculated might make sense?


Posted by: LizardBreath | Link to this comment | 10-22-09 12:18 PM
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I misread your comment and thought you were talking about a low but formal church. (Trinity used to be like this vis a vis morning prayer.)

I've heard of St. Paul's. I used to go to another church (Christ Church, Georgetown) because they had awesome food at coffee hour, and it was about half and half prominent right-wingers nad Democrats, but fairly formal. The priest who did a lot of the education stuff there also subbed at St. Paul's. He wasn't really a lefty, but he wasn't exactly a right-winger. He'd talk about things like the value of the Rule of Benedict.

The big problem was when a standing-room only crowd of people talking about Islam got contentious, because he talked about Islam as a Christian heresy. Likewise, he'd push Newman's line that the 39 Articles of the Faith were completely Catholic without a trace of Protestantism.


Posted by: Bostoniangirl | Link to this comment | 10-22-09 12:19 PM
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86: Wishing someone an easy fast is, indeed, conventional. If you want to go all out, I believe the traditional greeting is "g'mar chatima tova," but really even from Jews that comes off as pretentious.


Posted by: emdash | Link to this comment | 10-22-09 12:20 PM
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most (many?) Reform rabbis won't perform interfaith weddings, and my understanding is that if you are an aspiring rabbi whose significant other isn't Jewish you shouldn't even bother applying.

That seems to be the case for all rabbinical schools, regardless of denomination. What's noteworthy here is that the Reform movement is probably the best about these issues. Most Reform rabbis won't perform intermarriages, but if they want to they can, whereas Conservative rabbis are forbidden to by the United Synagogue regardless of their personal attitudes. And for the Orthodox it's so far out of bounds that I don't think it's even much of an issue.

So basically, if you want to have a Jewish wedding where one partner is not Jewish (something that is, incidentally, permitted by Jewish law in many cases), you have to find a Reform rabbi, but not just any Reform rabbi. This becomes a huge pain in areas without large Jewish populations.


Posted by: teofilo | Link to this comment | 10-22-09 12:20 PM
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57: I am really looking forward to the decade or more of schism, recrimination, litigation and Republican politicians' not knowing which direction to jump that will follow the deaths of the current generation of charismatic, polo-shirt-wearing petty suburban popes.

Heh. It's ungenerous to say so, but so am I.

Seriously, though, do we think this is going to happen? Why? I mean, the megachurches are threatened? I did not realize that.


Posted by: parsimon | Link to this comment | 10-22-09 12:21 PM
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This becomes a huge pain in areas without large Jewish populations.

Indeed, even in places with decent-sized Jewish populations. We had to find a Reconstructionist rabbi from the next state over.


Posted by: emdash | Link to this comment | 10-22-09 12:22 PM
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So very many people I know switched to reform congregations from conservative/conservadox ones precisely because of their interfaith marriages. Actually, the wife of the rabbi of one of the local (reform) synagogues when I was growing up was not Jewish. They were older and kids weren't an issue, so maybe that's why. Then again, everyone called that particular shul "Temple St. Mary's."


Posted by: oudemia | Link to this comment | 10-22-09 12:22 PM
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I'm not sure I see how allowing clergy to marry is actually liberalizing in any real way

It does strike me as if the church is entering the 18th century. But that's something I suppose.


Posted by: rob helpy-chalk | Link to this comment | 10-22-09 12:22 PM
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So basically, if you want to have a Jewish wedding where one partner is not Jewish (something that is, incidentally, permitted by Jewish law in many cases), you have to find a Reform rabbi, but not just any Reform rabbi. This becomes a huge pain in areas without large Jewish populations.

My friends eventually found a guy who spends most of his time working on cruise ships, but they had to agree to let him throw in a few minutes about the plight of Israel.


Posted by: Sifu Tweety | Link to this comment | 10-22-09 12:22 PM
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86: Wishing somebody a "good fast" seems a bit more personal than whatever the appropriate equivalent of "Happy Yom Kippur" might be. What if they didn't plan to fast? What if they or a family member couldn't fast, for medical reasons? What if anti-semites made fun of them for fasting when they were children?

I think I'm just going to crawl under my desk and die of embarrassment.


Posted by: Flippanter | Link to this comment | 10-22-09 12:23 PM
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I know of two interfaith couples who were married in Episcopal churches. I think that one of them involved a rabbi too, because a priest was complaining about how much extra time the rehearsal took.


Posted by: Bostoniangirl | Link to this comment | 10-22-09 12:23 PM
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86: I always want to ask people if they've done something worth atoning for, and if it was fun. But I think that's a misreading of the meaning of the thing. Also disrespectful, but that's less of an issue for me.


Posted by: togolosh | Link to this comment | 10-22-09 12:23 PM
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Wishing somebody a "good fast" seems a bit more personal than whatever the appropriate equivalent of "Happy Yom Kippur" might be. What if they didn't plan to fast? What if they or a family member couldn't fast, for medical reasons? What if anti-semites made fun of them for fasting when they were children?

"Happy New Year" is not quite precisely right, but close enough that it wouldn't be inappropriate in such a context.


Posted by: teofilo | Link to this comment | 10-22-09 12:26 PM
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95: "atone produtively!"


Posted by: Sifu Tweety | Link to this comment | 10-22-09 12:26 PM
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"Happy New Year" is not quite precisely right, but close enough that it wouldn't be inappropriate in such a context.

Since they are the Days of Awe, you might go with "Awesome New Year."


Posted by: emdash | Link to this comment | 10-22-09 12:26 PM
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ITYM "Awesome New Year, brah."


Posted by: LizardBreath | Link to this comment | 10-22-09 12:29 PM
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I mean, the megachurches are threatened? I did not realize that.

I believe that they are, in the long run, but by the irreproducibility of charismatic leadership rather than by changes in whatever demographic/land-use-planning trends made them viable in the first place. The Times had a fascinating article several months ago about various megachurches attempting to expand (I daresay there was talk of "brand extension") by sending junior ministers out from the mother church to new, and growing, suburbs and exurbs, to found not their own congregations but satellites of the mother congregation that would be served, remotely, by satellite transmissions of the Big Church's services (and, not coincidentally, the Big Church's founding minister's sermons and telepresence). Each of those founding ministers must retire and die, sooner or later, and most are in their 50s and 60s even now, and one could be forgiven for having the sense that they are likely to exile their most promising junior ministers to these satellites rather than bring them along as trained successors. There may be a generation, or partial generation, of founding ministers' sons (of course) trying to step into their fathers' shoes, but some of the exiled junior ministers won't stand for that.


Posted by: Flippanter | Link to this comment | 10-22-09 12:34 PM
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102 sounds right to me, and there's nothing unique to megachurches about it. Similar things seem to happen to virtually all new religious movements sooner or later.


Posted by: teofilo | Link to this comment | 10-22-09 12:36 PM
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102: Yes, and I should have said as much. Human organizations are organizations of humans, even in the American sprawl, even when they have singles' Bible-study groups, Starbucks franchises and racquetball courts.


Posted by: Flippanter | Link to this comment | 10-22-09 12:39 PM
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104 to 103.


Posted by: Flippanter | Link to this comment | 10-22-09 12:39 PM
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102 is a more sophisticated analysis than I had, but it seems right to me. I mean, there must be destabilizing in-fighting over something so valuable, right?


Posted by: Megan | Link to this comment | 10-22-09 12:40 PM
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86: IME, "blessed holiday" is an accepted all-purpose form of well-wishing.


Posted by: Jesus McQueen | Link to this comment | 10-22-09 12:43 PM
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86: "Hope you lose weight tomorrow!"


Posted by: unimaginative | Link to this comment | 10-22-09 12:44 PM
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BG:
Did you ever hear Bishop Spong speak?

He was in Richmond for a while. But lectured at Harvard too.


Posted by: Will | Link to this comment | 10-22-09 12:46 PM
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102 - 106: But aren't they businessmen above all? Surely they will not let this happen. Every CEO worth his salt knows that controlling your subordinates and grooming successors is of maximal importance. They presumably have family wealth tied up in the enterprise, so it's not like they don't give a shit what happens after they retire.

I hesitate to assume these people are stupid.


Posted by: parsimon | Link to this comment | 10-22-09 12:49 PM
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110 (in the second sentence) covers much of the reasoning behind the Church's desire for celibate clergy.


Posted by: Moby Hick | Link to this comment | 10-22-09 12:52 PM
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Wait. 3rd sentence.


Posted by: Moby Hick | Link to this comment | 10-22-09 12:57 PM
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Hey, the video Jesus links in 56 features a friend of mine! Hi John!


Posted by: Gabardine Bathyscaphe | Link to this comment | 10-22-09 1:00 PM
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Sure, these guys aren't stupid, and they'll presumably do their best to manage the transitions in their own best interest, but there are other people around with their own interests who will be watching out for those too.


Posted by: teofilo | Link to this comment | 10-22-09 1:01 PM
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||

Nancy Pelosi can really kick ass sometimes. Too bad about Harry Reid.

|>


Posted by: Bostoniangirl | Link to this comment | 10-22-09 1:05 PM
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114: As in any large organization in control of resources (in this case, in the form of congregants and their money and allegiance). It's possible that the megachurches have been relying overly much on charismatic leaders, perhaps in the way that Apple looks to Steve Jobs, or Amazon to Jeff Bezos, but my impression had been that the genius of the current megachurch phenomenon was in providing broad social and cultural support to congregants. You can get daycare! And, um, social worker equivalents. And a day out on the town, as it were -- in the church compound -- complete with music and movies 'n' shit like that. So I understood.

It reminds me of other theocratic organizations: it's a faith-based polity set off against our existing civic structures, deemed insufficient to meet the people's needs. I'm not sure the leader himself is critical. Though on the other hand, we have seen numerous older-style evangelists fall on their faces.

What's up with Pastor John Hagee these days? I have no idea.


Posted by: parsimon | Link to this comment | 10-22-09 1:15 PM
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It's possible that the megachurches have been relying overly much on charismatic leaders, perhaps in the way that Apple looks to Steve Jobs, or Amazon to Jeff Bezos, but my impression had been that the genius of the current megachurch phenomenon was in providing broad social and cultural support to congregants.

Yeah, it's really an empirical question whether it's the charismatic leadership or the social support structures that contribute more to the popularity and success of megachurches. I'm generally inclined to agree with Flippanter that it's more about the charisma, but I guess we'll see in the coming decades what happens after the initial leaders are gone.


Posted by: teofilo | Link to this comment | 10-22-09 1:19 PM
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What's up with Pastor John Hagee these days? I have no idea.

He called Hitler a half-breed Jew, and Elie Wiesel is apparently speaking at his church this Sunday.


Posted by: Matt F | Link to this comment | 10-22-09 1:21 PM
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110, 114: Businesses or not, and I don't disagree with the characterization, megachurches are large institutions that have to managed, and managed well if they are to survive, let alone flourish.

Beyond the division-of-the-spoils aspect, though, there is a reason that I mentioned "schism" above: I suspect that there are hidden fissures in the megachurches that the passing of the current cohort of authority figures will expose. E.g., the lack of a robust, or developed, doctrine, the question of how perfectly GWB-era Republicanism maps onto the church's mission, etc.?

As for the former, can the second and third generations build, and agree on how to build, lasting institutions on nothing more than guitar solos and altar calls? As for the latter, there may be somebody who tolerated the old man's prejudices for a while but doesn't himself hate or fear gay people, and who will have to struggle for influence with somebody who thinks the old man was too easygoing.


Posted by: Flippanter | Link to this comment | 10-22-09 1:24 PM
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The foregoing makes me sound like I am a great deal more interested in megachurches than I actually am.


Posted by: Flippanter | Link to this comment | 10-22-09 1:30 PM
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Agree with 88, but I'll generally only wish someone an easy fast if I already know they're fasting or if they've said the same to me first.

I think you can say "good yom tov" more generally (or "good holiday" if you prefer English).


Posted by: widget | Link to this comment | 10-22-09 1:31 PM
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Or "good good day" if you prefer literal redundancy.


Posted by: teofilo | Link to this comment | 10-22-09 1:33 PM
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118: That's delightful.

The one megachurch I've been to only had a moderately charismatic pastor, and there was a lot more singing and praising than preaching. I think it'll survive his leaving. The Mormons managed the transition from charismatic to corporate, and corporate is already a big part of megachurch DNA.


Posted by: Bave Dee | Link to this comment | 10-22-09 1:34 PM
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I've been saying "Eid Mubarak" Is that ok?


Posted by: rob helpy-chalk | Link to this comment | 10-22-09 1:34 PM
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122: Well, it is the Sabbath of Sabbaths, so there's some redundancy built into the original concept.


Posted by: widget | Link to this comment | 10-22-09 1:36 PM
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124: Depends who you're saying it to.


Posted by: teofilo | Link to this comment | 10-22-09 1:36 PM
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Nothing wrong with a little redundancy.


Posted by: teofilo | Link to this comment | 10-22-09 1:37 PM
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I just say it to anyone who has been fasting, even if it is, like, for a colonoscopy or something.


Posted by: rob helpy-chalk | Link to this comment | 10-22-09 1:38 PM
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I just say it to anyone who has been fasting, even if it is, like, for a colonoscopy or something.

It's when you start saying it to people who you think could stand to miss a meal or two that you get in trouble.


Posted by: Flippanter | Link to this comment | 10-22-09 1:39 PM
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Even the folks in Virginia or Pittsburgh are more like grouchy traditionalists than true evangelists.

As a native Pittsbourgeois who has lived in Virginia for 20 years, I cannot gainsay this.


Posted by: bill | Link to this comment | 10-22-09 1:42 PM
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119.2 is good. Yeah, okay.

I'm surprisingly more interested in the megachurches than I want to be, but the truth is that this country has been turning theocratic for a while now, and I'd like to ignore it, but that seems like a mistake.


Posted by: parsimon | Link to this comment | 10-22-09 1:46 PM
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131: I am sympathetic. I don't want 119 or my earlier comments to be interpreted as suggesting that I approve megachurches' current or likely future activities and affiliations or that I believe that the loss of the charismatic generation will liberalize the megachurches. To build on 119, I suspect that the guy who doesn't hate or fear gay/black/foreign/other people will find less support than the guy who sure as hell does and makes a big deal of it, even in 2020 Scottsdale or wherever.


Posted by: Flippanter | Link to this comment | 10-22-09 1:57 PM
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132: ? I didn't think you approved. We're pretty much in agreement, I think. {yet picture me making a face about the whole thing, for lo, it's all really irritating, isn't it.}


Posted by: parsimon | Link to this comment | 10-22-09 2:07 PM
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Since this is the religious thread, I'm just going to note how annoying it is to receive word that there is some kind of apparently anti-Semitic hatemongering going on in your community, complete with e-mailed statements of solidarity, support, and tolerance from local politicians, and have everybody be too #$!^&@$( cautious or PC or something to say what the offense was.

I have no idea if I should feel distaste or outrage. This makes it hard to plan the evening.


Posted by: Witt | Link to this comment | 10-22-09 3:03 PM
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Distaste => a clear soup, perhaps, with a salad. Couple pieces of sourdough, end with a sorbet and chocolate.

Outrage => definitely a spicy chili, which obviously calls for cornbread. Chopped spinach? I think so. Ice cream to follow.


Posted by: Megan | Link to this comment | 10-22-09 3:07 PM
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I've been on a cornbread-making kick lately, oddly enough. I guess that means a lot of outrage. Not a surprise to people who know me, probably.


Posted by: Witt | Link to this comment | 10-22-09 3:10 PM
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I like the idea of using cornbread as the unit of outrage.

Person 1: Dude, you seem upset.
Person 2: You don't know the half of it. I am three fucking cornbreads right now.


Posted by: Stanley | Link to this comment | 10-22-09 4:54 PM
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Cornbread for outrage makes inherent sense. I think we can all agree on that. Clear soup for distaste is a tougher sell. To me, clear soup says, recent or rapidly forthcoming medical procedure and or illness.


Posted by: Moby Hick | Link to this comment | 10-22-09 5:01 PM
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Did you ever hear Bishop Spong speak

True fact: Bishop Spong baptised my eldest child. I get his email blasts. He has some interesting ideas, with quite a scholarly approach. Lucky for him they don't burn heretics anymore.


Posted by: Tassled Loafered Leech | Link to this comment | 10-22-09 5:11 PM
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I may have overstated clear soup. All I meant was a soup base that isn't blended, thickened or creamed. That probably has a name, but I don't know it.


Posted by: Megan | Link to this comment | 10-22-09 5:12 PM
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To me, clear soup says, recent or rapidly forthcoming medical procedure and or illness.

Sounds pretty distasteful, no?


Posted by: teofilo | Link to this comment | 10-22-09 5:13 PM
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140: I don't know the word for that either. I think French Onion Soup, made right, is very clearly for contentment. Especially if you get some good bread to dunk in it.


Posted by: Moby Hick | Link to this comment | 10-22-09 5:14 PM
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141: If you're young maybe. Fear seems closer.


Posted by: Moby Hick | Link to this comment | 10-22-09 5:15 PM
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You could turn the cornbread up to 11 by putting chopped jalapenos in it.


Posted by: Megan | Link to this comment | 10-22-09 5:19 PM
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I haven't heard Bishop Spong speak. I did read one of his books, and I'm not a huge fan. He just seemed so arrogant and was comparing his own work to Luther's 95 Theses.

I like Gene Robinson a lot, who's a really good preacher and actually kind of conservative theologically.

The other thing that pisses me off about Bishop Spong is some of the stuff he's said about the African Bishops, specifically at the disastrous Lambeth Conference of 1998, he said, "Why should we care about what these Africans think, when they were practicing voodoo only a couple of generations ago?"

Umm, so their views on homosexuality aren't great, but, you know, a couple of generations ago the Anglican church was part of a colonial power, so.


Posted by: Bostoniangirl | Link to this comment | 10-22-09 5:27 PM
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[Redacted]


Posted by: Tassled Loafered Leech | Link to this comment | 10-22-09 5:28 PM
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actually, please delete


Posted by: Tassled Loafered Leech | Link to this comment | 10-22-09 5:29 PM
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Done.


Posted by: Sifu Tweety | Link to this comment | 10-22-09 5:32 PM
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I could use a reliable cornbread recipe, actually. That's a sad admission, I realize, since everyone says it's so easy.

Distaste is difficult: it calls for walking away, which calls for what? Winking sunlight among the trees, birdcall overhead and small-scale life at one's feet. Look, see.

Food-wise? Something clean, it feels like. Tabouli? Mm, yeah -- mediterranean finger food. Tabouli, pita bread, hummus, olives. Ratatouille with quinoa.


Posted by: parsimon | Link to this comment | 10-22-09 5:33 PM
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Tweety has admin privileges?


Posted by: Bostoniangirl | Link to this comment | 10-22-09 5:33 PM
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Tweety knows all and sees all.


Posted by: teofilo | Link to this comment | 10-22-09 5:35 PM
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Cornbread: 1 cup flour, 1 cup cornmeal, 1 tablespoon baking powder, 1 tsp salt. Mix together. One egg, one cup milk. Mix together in another bowl. Preheat oven to 425. Put cast iron skillet in oven with one stick of butter. When butter is almost melted mix dry ingredients with wet. Pour melted butter into the mix and stir quickly. Turn mix back into the skillet and bake for about 20-25 minutes. Turn out of skillet so that it doesn't sweat.


Posted by: jackie | Link to this comment | 10-22-09 5:43 PM
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I like cornbread. But not as much as I like the ecumenical movement!

Sorry. Trying to tie the thread together.


Posted by: Flippanter | Link to this comment | 10-22-09 5:51 PM
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So now Catholic priests can be married, but only if they're Anglican, and they can't marry Jews? This religion stuff is confusing.


Posted by: Not Prince Hamlet | Link to this comment | 10-22-09 5:58 PM
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152: Thank you, jackie!

One Stick Of Butter?? Whoa. Okay, but I wonder if there's a way to do it with less butter. If not, that's okay. Is the butter part of the, you know, the chemical essence and magic that occurs?

The ecumenical movement may need the butter, Flippanter.


Posted by: parsimon | Link to this comment | 10-22-09 6:07 PM
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The ecumenical movement makes a point of acknowledging the virtues of butter, lard and oil, each with its own rich and profound traditions.


Posted by: Flippanter | Link to this comment | 10-22-09 6:19 PM
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This is my grandmother Virginia's corn bread:

Oil or grease a cast-iron skillet and put it in the oven.
Heat oven to 375d.

Mix:
2 cups buttermilk (yogurt tolerable)
1 or 2 eggs
1/2 cup oil

Separately mix:
2 cups cornmeal (White Cat if you can get it, wrote my grandmother. I never have.)
2 tsp baking powder
1/2 t salt
1/2 t soda

Whump dry into wet and pour it into the hot pan. Bake about 45 minutes, until browning on top and not jiggly.


Posted by: clew | Link to this comment | 10-22-09 6:21 PM
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....You put butter on when you serve it, see.


Posted by: clew | Link to this comment | 10-22-09 6:22 PM
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If I were making cornbread, I'd go with clew's recipe. Only because 'yogurt tolerable' is pretty much the best, terse description of a food ever. And because not using half regular flour seems a bit more in the spirit.


Posted by: Moby Hick | Link to this comment | 10-22-09 6:33 PM
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War of the cornbread recipes. And yet it is so easy, you say. Just whip up a batch; clew's recipe calls for whumping, even.

I will say that I have the ingredients for jackie's recipe readily to hand, but don't really have clew's buttermilk at a moment's notice. So there's that. I take it that jackie's is more cakey, and clew's is more corn-grainy.


Posted by: parsimon | Link to this comment | 10-22-09 6:49 PM
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I don't have a cast iron skillet. I don't buttermilk or corn flour, but I live three blocks from a grocery store.


Posted by: Moby Hick | Link to this comment | 10-22-09 7:11 PM
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You could always enter the priesthood as a Uniate or one of the other Catholic rites that allow marriage and then switch over to the mainstream.


Posted by: teraz kurwa my | Link to this comment | 10-22-09 7:42 PM
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To butter milk, to corn flour.


Posted by: md 20/400 | Link to this comment | 10-22-09 7:57 PM
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Oops. Should be half a stick of butter. But a full stick would be interesting.


Posted by: jackie | Link to this comment | 10-23-09 2:35 AM
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163: it's a cookbook!


Posted by: OPINIONATED BUTTER | Link to this comment | 10-23-09 6:05 AM
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My minister father refers to Episcopalians as "the competition"

From a Catholic I know: "The Episcopalians are just like us -- except they're sinners."

(She was definitely kidding.)


Posted by: Sir Kraab | Link to this comment | 10-23-09 8:54 AM
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166: I've only been at Episcopalian services for weddings, but it is a very similar liturgy. Except for the part right after the Our Father, I would pretty say what I thought I should say and it worked. Then I made a joke about the Irish to the father of the groom without realizing he was Irish 50% more Irish then myself. What is an Irish guy doing at an Episcopalian church?


Posted by: Moby Hick | Link to this comment | 10-23-09 8:58 AM
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My minister father refers to Episcopalians as "the competition"

***THIS WEEK ONLY***
Six free venial sins! No Confession for 12 months. Operators standing by.


Posted by: JP Stormcrow | Link to this comment | 10-23-09 3:12 PM
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I should think one flours corn, rather than the other way around.

I only get fresh buttermilk when I'm having people over; usually I use yogurt, often some powdered buttermilk for flavor. I don't think it would work if you couldn't pour it into a cold pan. (I can't seriously imagine cooking without a cast-iron pan. There are lots of things to call a milkshake, but I have to have a heavy pan!)


Posted by: clew | Link to this comment | 10-23-09 3:17 PM
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Pour it into a hot pan, duh. Does that work with metal cake tins?


Posted by: clew | Link to this comment | 10-23-09 3:17 PM
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My current cast-iron skillet problem is that the one I inherited from my mom, who says she stopped using it years ago, smokes like the dickens whenever I put it on the stove, and I'm not sure how to stop this or fix it. Help?


Posted by: Stanley | Link to this comment | 10-23-09 4:02 PM
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171: Probably something's up with the seasoning. You can sort of reset a cast iron pan pretty easily by scraping with a wire brush and re-seasoning. Other options: stick it in a self cleaning oven, or spray it with oven cleaner and let it sit for a day.


Posted by: Matt F | Link to this comment | 10-23-09 4:31 PM
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172: Hm. I'll try the wire brush/re-season thing, thanks!


Posted by: Stanley | Link to this comment | 10-23-09 4:36 PM
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I saw on TV (I think it was Good Eats) that the older a cast iron pan was, the better it was supposed to be. Since I have no cast iron pans, I really don't know if this is true or not. However, I do have an freshly baked apple pie.


Posted by: Moby Hick | Link to this comment | 10-23-09 4:50 PM
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What's the advantage of a cast iron pan over a good quality heavy pan of some other sort (steel, copper, anodized aluminum)?


Posted by: teraz kurwa my | Link to this comment | 10-23-09 4:56 PM
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I don't understand how a pan smokes. Do you mean that you're burning stuff in it? Or are you cooking stuff in it at a temperature that wouldn't normally generate smoke, but somehow it's still smoking?

But I'm a bad person to talk about this: I think the first step of most recipes is "take the batteries out of the smoke detector."


Posted by: LizardBreath | Link to this comment | 10-23-09 4:58 PM
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175: I don't know about culinary benefits, but cast iron will save you about $80 to $300 bucks, depending on the size of the pan.


Posted by: Moby Hick | Link to this comment | 10-23-09 4:58 PM
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175: If it's well seasoned, a good cast iron pan is pretty nearly nonstick, in a cheap durable kind of way.


Posted by: LizardBreath | Link to this comment | 10-23-09 5:00 PM
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I'm not an expert, but I'm pretty certain you can melt (or at least warp) a copper pan if you aren't careful.


Posted by: Moby Hick | Link to this comment | 10-23-09 5:03 PM
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What's the advantage of a cast iron pan over a good quality heavy pan of some other sort (steel, copper, anodized aluminum)?

It leaches small amounts of iron into your food.


Posted by: Witt | Link to this comment | 10-23-09 5:03 PM
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What's the advantage of a cast iron pan over a good quality heavy pan of some other sort (steel, copper, anodized aluminum)?

177 gets most of it: non-enameled cast iron is substantially cheaper than the other materials. (Enameled cast-iron, like Le Creuset, is about on par.) Plus it'll hold heat better than steel or aluminum will.


Posted by: Josh | Link to this comment | 10-23-09 5:09 PM
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Do you mean that you're burning stuff in it? Or are you cooking stuff in it at a temperature that wouldn't normally generate smoke, but somehow it's still smoking?

The second one. Like, I'll put in some oil to heat it up, and before it's anywhere near hot, the pan is giving off smoke in areas not covered by the oil. Does that description make any sense?


Posted by: Stanley | Link to this comment | 10-23-09 5:27 PM
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I really want a big Le Creuset stew pot. I just can't make myself spend that kind of money on a pot. Especially since I've probably made four soups and three stews in the past five years.


Posted by: Moby Hick | Link to this comment | 10-23-09 5:31 PM
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182: I've never seen that. I've smoked the oil/fat plenty of times, but never the bare pan.


Posted by: Moby Hick | Link to this comment | 10-23-09 5:32 PM
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184: Yeah, it's definitely not the oil. I've accidentally brought oil* to the smoke point before, and this smoking is something different.

*peanut oil, in fact; smelled terrible well into the next day.


Posted by: Stanley | Link to this comment | 10-23-09 5:42 PM
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Speaking of cornbread, there was a recipe for cornbread muffins in the last issue of Cookie. I'll kind of miss that magazine if only for the weird experience of looking at the cover and seeing "naked, writhing girl from music video" with her little ones.


Posted by: Moby Hick | Link to this comment | 10-23-09 7:54 PM
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My cast iron pan is inherited from a great-grandmother, and possibly from her mother; it's the first one in the family that didn't have little legs to hold it out of the coals, and my mother still calls it the 'spider' (as the legged pans were called. Apparently. By one of my great-grandmothers).

This would give it really amazing seasoning, except that at least once while learning how to cook I got it so burned and grotty that we cleaned it by burying it in a banked woodstove overnight, which gets it back to plain iron. This took off *a lot more* stuff than was obviously 'seasoning', so possibly Stanley's pan has something very strange in its pores.

I'd scrub the hell out of it, and failing that, try burying it in coals.

It's the thermal mass of cast iron that's so hard to replace for browning and crustiness; exactly the opposite of twitchy, responsive tinned copper.

(Has anyone retinned copper? I need to.)


Posted by: clew | Link to this comment | 10-24-09 10:42 AM
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burying it in coals

Like, in a firepit in my backyard or in a grill something? I'm not sure I can picture what you're describing.


Posted by: Stanley | Link to this comment | 10-24-09 10:52 AM
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187.2 is also my guess.

Retinning is simple in theory (it used to be one of those things that lots of people used to do by themselves) but I gather that it's messy and potentially tricky to get the hang of. I take my to a place nearby which happens to be (apparently) the only place in the state where you can get it done. Having to ship your copper somewhere may be more of a pain in the ass than trying to retin it yourself.


Posted by: Jesus McQueen | Link to this comment | 10-24-09 11:08 AM
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188: Either, or in a fireplace or self-cleaning oven. You just want to get it hot enough to burn it clean, then brush it out and give it a thorough seasoning.


Posted by: Jesus McQueen | Link to this comment | 10-24-09 11:11 AM
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190: Huh. Okay. I wonder if I know anyone with a self-cleaning oven.


Posted by: Stanley | Link to this comment | 10-24-09 11:17 AM
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188: A firepit would work, I don't know if a grill would be big enough -- this worked only because we had a woodburning stove. I don't even know if an open fireplace would hold heat long enough. The self-cleaning oven is a great idea.

I have a natty little kit for retinning, a piece of tin and a little bottle of flux and earnest descriptions of what metal looks like right before it's too hot. I worry I'm going to asphyxiate myself, or ruin the pan.


Posted by: clew | Link to this comment | 10-24-09 11:51 AM
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(Jesus McQueen: are you zero-indexing?)


Posted by: clew | Link to this comment | 10-24-09 11:53 AM
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191: A regular oven should work fine -- if you crank it up all the way and leave it in there for an hour or so, even 450 or 500 should be hot enough to burn anything unlikely off it. Then scrub and reseason.


Posted by: LizardBreath | Link to this comment | 10-24-09 12:13 PM
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194: Hm. I will give it a shot later this afternoon and report back.


Posted by: Stanley | Link to this comment | 10-24-09 12:19 PM
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(Jesus McQueen: are you zero-indexing?)

Um..I have no idea.

If you have a kit, I'd say have at it. It's my understanding that the temperature required to melt the tin is pretty well below what it would take to destroy the pan. If you've got any scrap bits of copper lying around, maybe you could practice on that.


Posted by: Jesus McQueen | Link to this comment | 10-24-09 12:21 PM
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Where are the tinkers of yesteryear?


Posted by: md 20/400 | Link to this comment | 10-24-09 12:35 PM
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All damned.


Posted by: Sifu Tweety | Link to this comment | 10-24-09 12:36 PM
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Racist!


Posted by: md 20/400 | Link to this comment | 10-24-09 12:37 PM
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197: If ifs and ands were pots and pans, there'd be no need for them.


Posted by: Jesus McQueen | Link to this comment | 10-24-09 12:42 PM
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Stanley, make sure you have adequate ventilation for trying LB's suggestion. If the pan is smoking during normal heating, it's going to smoke like crazy when you bring it up to hot oven temps. I realized this too late once when using the self-cleaning trick to bring a badly used cast-iron pan back down to zero so that it could be seasoned effectively. Luckily a combination of open doors and hood-fan thing meant that the first floor of my mom's house was only smokey for part of the afternoon.


Posted by: Jimmy Pongo | Link to this comment | 10-24-09 1:01 PM
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Instead of sticking your cast-iron pan in the oven, you might try soaking it in Coke overnight, then scrubbing it out the next day.


Posted by: Josh | Link to this comment | 10-24-09 2:56 PM
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202: Yeah, I saw that part of Crocodile Dundee, too.


Posted by: Turgid Jacobian | Link to this comment | 10-24-09 3:11 PM
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Drop an aspirin in the Coke while you're at it.


Posted by: JP Stormcrow | Link to this comment | 10-24-09 4:36 PM
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So LB's 194 seems to have worked. (Thanks!) The skillet when placed on the stove now smokes not.

On to advice on (re-)seasoning it. So far, from a cow-orker, I've got rub it with olive oil and heat it up on the stovetop but not too much. Revise and extend?


Posted by: Stanley | Link to this comment | 10-24-09 10:59 PM
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Oh, and just to be clear, I filled it with cocaine overnight, per Josh's advice.


Posted by: Stanley | Link to this comment | 10-24-09 11:00 PM
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Revise and extend?

You can use any fat, really. Most of the recommendations I've seen have been for canola or corn oil, but olive oil'd work too. Cover the entire pan (except for the bottom) in oil, and stick it in the oven at low heat (this post says 200 degrees) for a few hours.


Posted by: Josh | Link to this comment | 10-24-09 11:10 PM
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207: Helpful, thanks!


Posted by: Stanley | Link to this comment | 10-24-09 11:14 PM
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use rendered bacon fat, strained of particles.


Posted by: alameida | Link to this comment | 10-25-09 12:15 AM
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209: I assume meat's been cooked in this pan before, but I'd prefer not to cook more meat in it. (That is, I'm not so strict a vegetarian not to cook in a pan Mom fried some some bacon in, but at the same time I'd prefer no meat stuff, so, yeah, no bacon fat, now that we've burned most of that away.) Is that too tall an order?


Posted by: Stanley | Link to this comment | 10-25-09 12:31 AM
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One pitfall is that you want a thin layer of oil. The first couple of times I tried to do this I slopped a lot of oil on, and got gummy residue. Get it hot, and then wipe oil onto it with a paper towel -- covered all over, but not dripping. And then leave it in the oven for a couple of hours.


Posted by: LizardBreath | Link to this comment | 10-25-09 6:28 AM
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Don't shower for a couple of days, then wear the frying pan as a hat for a few hours while you go on a bike ride. That's the natural, vegetarian way to do it.


Posted by: Sifu Tweety | Link to this comment | 10-25-09 6:47 AM
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And make sure you sharpen it religiously.


Posted by: JP Stormcrow | Link to this comment | 10-25-09 6:58 AM
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re: 205

I was always told that olive oil has too low a smoke point for proper seasoning. When I used to season woks* I used to use groundnut oil, or similar. However, I seem to have been wrong, as wiki says that light olive oil has a higher smoke point than groundnut.

* can't unfortunately use one on my current shitty cooker


Posted by: nattarGcM ttaM | Link to this comment | 10-25-09 7:05 AM
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214: You can get your groundnut oil if you take the lift to the lorry and use the zebra crossing and turn by the pram.


Posted by: Moby Hick | Link to this comment | 10-25-09 7:55 AM
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The thing about olive oil, or bacon fat for that matter, is that they can turn rancid over time. Peanut oil is harder to find in the US for some reason, but canola or safflower should work just fine. I've had best luck speading vegetable shortenting on to a warm pan with a paper towel. The rightish amount of oil melts on and stays on.


Posted by: Jimmy Pongo | Link to this comment | 10-25-09 9:42 AM
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214: Yeah, groundnut/peanut oil smokes earlier than olive oil and olive oil smokes earlier than canola/grapeseed oil -- which is what I use to season pans/woks. I basically use this method, ganked from Pim (scroll all the way down):

First, add to your wok one cup of oil -make sure you brush the oil over all the inside surface of the wok- and heat the wok until it is smoking. Tilt the pan around to keep lubricating the surface with oil and let it continues to smoke for a few minutes -make sure your smoke vent is running and all the windows are open, by the way. Then, take the pan off the heat and dispose of the oil. Pour half a cup of kosher salt into the wok and, with a kitchen rag, rub the salt all over the inside surface of the wok. Throw out the salt, wipe the wok clean with a damp towel. Pour a small amount of oil into a paper towel and wipe the oil all over the inside surface again. Your wok is now seasoned and ready.

The pad thai recipe is really good, too.


Posted by: oudemia | Link to this comment | 10-25-09 9:51 AM
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