Friday, January 22, 2010

Two Meta-Furs for Old School Dave Wainscott, SSR, BL

cartoon (C) by David Hayward. Used by permission..if i...and you.. buy him a beer ( see this,
and this)

As you can tell from the sidebar cloud-listing of my most popular "labels" (Blogger's cheesy word for what most blogs term "tags"... that is, "topics") on this blog, I collect alternative images and metaphors (or as NT Wright would call them "meta-furs") for the "role of the pastor."

That I teased Blogger for using an old-school term for "tag," is itself telling here. I know Wordpress (and others) are far more hip/emerging/new school, but I learned to blog on this platform, and I'm just not ready to learn a new platform.

I know, that totally baffled all my readers who see me as I sound like those "we've never done it that way before" know, the commitee of buzzards.
Of all people, I don't want to default to formal formolatry.

And I am not afraid of change...unless I take the leap to abandon Blogger...(:

But it is tough to launch out.
Especially knowing that, asi n Eugene Peterson's delightful phrase, all metaphors are "a loud fart in the salon of spirituality" (Though, "loud fart in the salon of spirituality," that is a great title for any pastor worth her or his calling..).

Having said that, I am aiming to be fearless and uncensored as I explore new metaphors and "job descriptions"(yes, the old-school term) for "the role/artist formerly known as the pastor."

If you have been following recent explorations, I am hip to putting "party planner" on my business card and résumé.
But today I am flirting with two images...boith way too long for...and not intended for.. business cards.

The first:
"straddler of surprise and release"
(Okay, if we abbreviate it as SSR, it will look cool on the card: Pastor Artie Bucco, MDiv, SSR).

The images comes from "rocker-turned-neuroscientist" (Hey, how does that one capture the essence of 'pastor'?) Daniel Levitin:

"The Beatles' 'For No One' ends on the V chord and we wait for a resolution that never comes--at least not in that song. But the very next song on the album 'Revolver' starts a whole step down from the very chord we were waiting to hear, as semi-resolution that straddles surprise and release."
-Levitin, "This is Your Brain on Music," p, 112...emphasis mine
"Semi-resolution"...yes, how else to challenge the flock (including meself as shepherd and chief straddler) into wiki-wrestling...liturgis interruptis....which lovingly leaves an ellipsis...and "ends" sermons with a question as opposed to an answer (or three).

Some see my style as intentionally stirring up controversy for its ownsake, or inviting disequilibium for fun.

Nothing could be further than the truth..I hope. I prefer Tim's analysis ("Dave, you know what I like about you? You always push toward the unobvious!")

Pushing and prodding towards the obviously unobvious metaphor/meta-for.
That's all Jesus ever did, according to Matthew 13:34-35
Let's leave parables...and sermons..and pastoring/pestering a bit more open-ended and rhematic than we gave given them credit and room for.

So, even though I don't try too hard to mess people up irretrievably..

.. it would be appropriate to, in a typical "church service," to, in the middle (towars the end) of a popular and predictable praise chorus, intentionally cut off the lyric projection and musical accompaniment suddenly at an unexpected point.

Perhaps pathetic.

But I'll probably chicken out trying that next Sunday.

But somehow I will seek to (if more subtly) straddle surprise and release.

I was a city kid visiting my grandparents (very) rural farm for the summer. My grandpa bravely took me out to a field to help me learn to drive. At one point, he saw a need to shepherd me into some quick self-correction. "Staddle the straw!, he yelled. "Staddle the straw!!"

"Grandpa, " I calmy and wryly intoned, "I only have two problems with that command. I don't know what 'straddle' means, and I don't know what 'straw' looks like."

All these years later, I am still learning what straddling/pastoring is.

Second image..

I wanted to call this "mushroom eater" in light of Erwin McManus's classic story (here),
but I had better call it "Bono leaper" (which is kinda the same thing.)

Any longtime U2 fan knows how the three other guys often had to worry about/play mother to Bono's tendency to wander off/leap off stages, speakers, catwalks....

The morning after attending U2's second New Haven concert of 1983, I read in the local paper some quotes from Bono as he remembered the first concert, just months earlier.

And as much as I am "still living off"(see my comment here...and some audio of one of the prophetic moments here) the one concert I did manage to see, I still can't believe I had to miss the historic first one (as often on Bono's birthday, the concert was unique)...especially the infamous thirty foot leap.

The leap that ended an era for the leaper.

All kinds of things went right...and wrong...that night. Including The Edge becoming so bored (or feigning) that he "abandoned his guitar and lounged on a speaker while yawning and slowly oaging through a photo magazine" (Carter Alan, "U2: The Road to Pop," p. 67.

But the history maker was Bono's thirty-foot leap from teh PA stack to the crwod bewlos.

It was either stupidity or Spiritaneous.
Surely a bit of both.

A leap of faith.

"I wish he wouldn't do that," road manager Dennis Sheehan said backstage,
"With someone like Bono, though, what are you gonna do" (Alan, p, 68).

I fear/hope that is ocassionally said of me.

But contrary to my reputation as a risker, i haven't even left Blogger yet..let alone Haran, home...or the stage.

No map.
Some leaps will of necessity be dangerous.
Some will inevitably be fatal..but won't kill me.
Some will succeed by failing.
Some might be abyssmal leaps into the abyss from which no business card ever returns (void).
All will entail Abrahamically leaping before I look.

Reckless abandon, and abandonment of wrecklessness.

Hopefully not the leap Jesus refused and defused when the devil tempted him in the wilderness;
that leap from far more than thirty feet, that leap that Henri Nouwen coined the "temptation to be spectacular."


Off to VistaPrint..

Or the ledge..

or at least church.

Or anywhere I can staddle and leap from

...................or at least church.

No comments:

Post a Comment

Hey, thanks for engaging the conversation!