Jackass for the Hour: note on revision (update on British English, or not)

jackass for the hour

Original cover of Jackass for the Hour for which, at the time, a pseudonym was employed.

/// UPDATE: When I originally wrote this in the mid-2000s, I used the pen-name above, pretending further that the author was himself from northern Benin and was having difficulty learning English, that is, British English. I’m very evil and bad. I had reasons for using a pseudonym at the time. A very nice retired school teacher in England helped correct my usages to polish up my British English, that is, non-American English. There are British spellings throughout. Some of you have caught some. I am enthralled you have not noticed the others. For instance, the spelling of verbs uses an “s” and not a “c”, but a “c” can be used where Americans use an “s” in a noun, such as “defense” for Americans but “defence” for the U.K. If a future revision to thoroughly bring the book up-to-date” takes place, and if a publisher can be found, if that publisher is American based, they might want to change all the spellings and grammar over to American ways. /////

It’s not that there’s a real revision in progress as the chapters are put up again on Arise! Let us be going! I appreciate the corrections coming in by comments or email regarding spelling / grammatical errors. Sometimes I don’t know if sometimes fiercely critical comments about the plot or characters are baiting me to give spoilers, but I’ll remain steadfast in not doing so. It’s not that the points made are out of date, though perhaps the book does lack some modern context under the papacy of Pope Francis, yet, even in the diversity of various Pontiffs, it is nevertheless truth that quite exactly the same problems exist today as they did just a few years ago. The more things change, the more they stay the same.

What I wanted to say just now, at this point, after many of the last chapters and before some of the following chapters, is that some of the dialogue on the mouths of some of the characters, particularly the Cardinals, may seem to be particularly inane, whether about Scripture, ecumenism, anything about dialogue that is “interreligious”, anything to do with the infamous Sister Nice (what a fright she is!), etc. However – and I am truly sorry to say this – the characters, even Sister Nice (no, really), while occasionally put in dramatic situations for the sake of the story line, have sayings on their lips which are often verbatim coming from Cardinals or others working in the Roman Curia or those in like situations, sometimes taken right from their own speeches published by Vatican Radio by other means of communication of the Holy See, or in other sources, gleaned before they could be taken down, if they have been, or from eye witnesses, or from what I myself have witnessed in my decades in Rome.

This is the darkness in which we live. There are not a few with so very much hubris that they have claimed – in print – that they have conquered, that no one of the rest of us of the great unwashed will ever be able to figure out how much they have duped us, how the direction and doctrine of the Church will be forever changed by what they have have been able to accomplish, coming at things as they have in so many ways with so many nuances with so many various angles of approach from so very many directions. That’s what they think.

The book is a statement to them all that their mind games are instantaneously cut through and exposed by love which is truth (which none of us has of his own), that is, in the same way in which Jesus answered the mind game temptations Satan put to Him in those 40 days in the desert, always answering with love and respect for His dear Heavenly Father.

I know that there will be those who will be extremely critical of the next chapters going up, but, what can I say except that they should wait to see how they will be even more offended as each chapter comes along, as points are developed, at characters develop, as the plot thickens, etc. It is a novel, after all. Have some patience. Have some forgiveness for poetic license. ;-)

6 Comments

Filed under Jackass for the Hour

6 responses to “Jackass for the Hour: note on revision (update on British English, or not)

  1. Gina Nakagawa

    Father, there is nothing, absolutely nothing wrong with the plot or the characters of this novel. The words in the mouths of the Princes of the Church are, for a sadly large number of them, are deadly accurate. The only errors in this book, so far anyway, have been occasional spelling and grammar errors. They are not many, but this story deserves to be as error free as humanly possible (there is an interesting observation. Keep up the great work. The Church needs this. Christ deserves to have His Bride returned to Him cleansed and renewed. God bless you and all your endeavors on His behalf.

    May I ask a brief question? I notice that in a few places, you use the British English spelling for words that would have been employed in the Douay/Rheims translation of the Bible (e.g. “gaol”) Is that deliberate?

  2. sanfelipe007

    I was wondering how/when you would respond to the pressures or your readership. “Water off a duck”, father, (like)”water off a duck.”

  3. Aussie Mum

    Thank you for these chapters Father.

  4. Monica Harris

    The spelling I have been most fascinated/jarred by is “squaller”—didn’t know if you were deliberately homophoning 🙂

  5. Nancyv

    This is making me a better Catholic (lover of Jesus in the body and blood of His holy sacrifice). I can imagine the inaneness of the conversation ahead are reflective of these times as well. Thank you Fr George Byers and Deo gratias.

  6. You are doing a perfect job with unfolding this story. I do go and reread some sections but that is not because you aren’t clear but because I need to to make sure I am understanding it correctly and because, let’s face it, it needs to be heard again, once for the mind and once for the heart. Loving this book! It is a highlight of my day when I see the next chapter has been put up!

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