We were quite busy at the store yesterday, though not insanely busy. The numbers ended up looking good, but we had enough time at various points in the day to discuss why it was that we were not insanely busy.

The Princess left, exhausted, after lunch. She will be working again today. The Poster Queen and I stayed on till the bitter end, which took place rather later than our official closing time. By then I had been working for fourteen hours, counting the computer time, with time out to take #2 son to Target for school supplies. I had made a couple of hopeful phone calls home on the subject of dinner, but no one was cooking at my place. I brought home a drive-through dinner.

“I have college, you know,” #1 son reminded me. “Can we afford this?”

I assured him that it was coming out of the grocery money. I also pointed out that it was cheap and nasty. The boys like cheap, nasty food, and I have reached a point of fatigue at which I no longer care what we are eating.

However, I have today and tomorrow off (except for computer work, and I plan to keep that at a minimum). I will get some proper food into the house, carefully since I have already plundered the budget for carry-out, clean up a little bit, sing in church, and that is all. #1 daughter will be coming home today, and I hope to have some time with her. I also have a couple of Audrey Hepburn flicks that Netflix sent me, so sitting around like a couch potato knitting and watching old movies could very well happen.Tomorrow I will see the kids off to school, and spend time with #1 daughter unless she also heads off to school. I am not sure what her plans are.

So, last night, with a sense of week-end vegging out, I returned to reading A.J. Jacobs’s book, The Year of Living Biblically, a record of his quest to follow all the rules in the Bible.

I have to say that I am a bit disappointed that he didn’t provide a list. He began by going through the whole Bible and writing down all the hundreds of commands he found, but for some reason he did not append them to his book. This didn’t matter at first, but by now I have realized that he is approaching the whole thing with the same attitude teachers take toward the state frameworks: he is trying to check all the commands off.

Now, I know a lot of people who strive for personal holiness, using the Bible as a standard. Striving for personal holiness is more common in my circle than striving to lose weight or increase income. This may be why I assumed that this would be what Jacobs was doing. Instead, he seeks out opportunities to do things on his list. He manufactures chances to stone an adulterer or to take an egg without also taking the mother bird. He eats grasshoppers just because they are not forbidden.

He does write about his struggles with lust, covetousness, pride, lying, and the impulse to speak unkindly.

Actually, speaking unkindly seems to be a huge problem for him. A reader cannot help but notice what a nice guy he is, but he lives in New York. He provides examples of conversations in which speaking unkindly is clearly his only choice. I, thinking of the multiplicity of other kinder things he could have said, find myself feeling very thankful that I don’t live in New York.

Anyway, he does mention these larger issues, but he is mostly concerned with knocking items off his list. So, by halfway through the book, I am wishing that he had appended a list, so we could keep track and sort of cheer him on. I am fighting an impulse to go read Deuteronomy in order to see what might be coming up next in the book.

It may be that the ongoing effort to avoid lying would be boring to write about, or to read about, while rituals involving chickens keep the narrative thread going.