Whenever I visit Mum, she makes sure I go home with a suitcase full of clean clothes. This, understandably, makes it very easy when get home. I unpack and just put everything away.
So the mountain of laundry waiting for me last week had very little of my stuff in it. Not that I’m pointing any fingers or anything.
I made a start on the foothills yesterday and the excavation continued today. And while washing machines have made our lives so much better in terms of time saved, there’s still the time consuming tasks of putting it away afterwards. Mind you, the drawers were nicely empty so room wasn’t an issue.
Apart from the eternal washing cycles, I spent most of the day cleaning up. I realised how much better it is when I keep on top of the housework by maintaining my personal Schedule of Works. This schedule has been seriously disrupted by Christmas and going to Queensland which means the works are more labour intensive than usual.
Though, truth be told, I’d rather not write about housework. I do wonder, however, how the Iron Age Britons managed with dirt floors and thatched roundhouses. Ignoring laundry (I assume the only time their ‘clothes’ were washed was when it rained or they went fishing) and washing up (obviously they hadn’t heard of washing up liquid), their houses would have still managed to collect an awful lot of dust each day, particularly when their floors were dirt. And spider webs. Did they get rid of the spider webs?
No, rather than housework, I’d like to share a little news item I came across last Friday when I was researching propellers. It’s okay to keep reading, this has nothing to do with ships or ship propulsion.
Back in the year 1900 in Uttica, New York, the local priest was a bit put out by his parishioners putting only pennies in the collection plate. Clearly he believed that charity had a price and it was a lot higher than one penny. Apparently one Sunday after mass, he had to count 900 of them! This was clearly too much so he decided to do something about it.
The Reverend Thomas J. Ducey, for that was his name, had an inventive bent. He took the collection bowl and fitted a contraption to it which would count each donation as it was collected. While I haven’t been able to find any details of this amazing invention, it was apparently operated by the usher, in the manner of a cash register, as each parishioner deposited his or her hard earned cash. I can only assume that this amount was then either sneered at by the usher (and anyone near enough to see what it was) or praised for the generosity of its giver.
I’m not sure what Jesus would have thought of this but Thomas was adamant in his opinion that if you went to church you should pay a decent price for it. In his sermon he declared:
The putting of pennies in the collection plate is an insult to the church. Don’t put any more. No one can truly believe in the presence of Christ in the church and give a penny for the support of His religion. It’s a mockery of religion.
Strong words indeed! Clearly aimed at shaming his congregation…though there’s no indication whether it worked or whether they just stopped coming to church until they’d saved enough money to attend.
What a funny old world we live in. Imagine being told there was a minimum amount to your charity. Or, maybe, it was actually an early 20th century form of Trip Advisor. Perhaps the congregation was giving what they figured the service was worth. Maybe the Reverend Thomas J. Ducey was a rubbish preacher and only worth a penny anyway.