If the first chapter of Unweaving the Rainbow was all about the wonder of the world, the second chapter is about how people think that science lessens that wonder. Dawkins gives us snippets of poetry villifying science, and the history of science and poetry’s relationships. He also bemoans the current state of public thought about science in terms highly reminiscent of those used by the church.

Dawkins complains that scientists are expected to make their work unrecognizable in an effort to appeal to the masses, treating science as fun and nothing but fun, as though the idea were to lure kids into the field and then hit them with the reality of scientific study like a mackerel in the face. His complaints precisely echo those of churches where there is pressure to remove everything from Christianity but “God loves you.” He complains about the relativistic notions of truth that cause people to behave as though identifying something as a fact is in some way oppressive — and sounds just like people of faith who complain that moral relativism causes people to behave as though believing in absolute truth were somehow oppressive. I like the irony of this, since Dawkins is an evangelical atheist.

We are inviting our glamorous aunt to Thanksgiving, and #2 daughter will be able to come after all, so the guest list is expanding. I think that, with the turkey a foregone conclusion, adding an extra pie and a vegetable or two is the best way to approach this. So here is a recipe for a really wonderful apple pie:

Special Apple Pie

4-5 apples, peeled, cored,and thinly sliced
1/2 c. apricot jam
3 T lemon juice
2 T grated lemon peel
1/2 c. raisins
1/2 c. sugar
1 t cinnamon

Toss all these things together and arrange them in a deep-dish pie crust.

1/2 c. flour
1/2 c. sugar
1/4 c. butter (1/2 stick)
1 c. ground walnuts or pecans

Cream the butter and sugar and stir in the nuts. Sprinkle it over the fruit and bake the pie for about an hour, till the top is nicely browned.

I had a call last night from a dear friend with whom I had lost touch when I switched churches. I am seeing some of my former choir-mates at the Master Chorale, and this old friend is gathering some others for lunch on Sunday. We are having glorious fall days, and Thanksgiving is such a perfect season for reconnecting with old friends and family.

It is absolutely not the season for knitting pirate hats, but I just have to link you to the pattern, because it is so cute. Maybe you have a little friend who would like to have this hat for Christmas. If so, then this would be the perfect time for knitting pirate hats.