Spoiler alert: this is about today’s New York Times crossword puzzle so if you like doing it and have not tackled it yet do not read this blog post.
I solved it today but I got stuck in one part of it for some while. There was a clue for a three word space that read something like “word that can be used either before or after pack.” I thought about that for a bit and said to myself, “pack rat, rat pack” and filled in “rat.” Well, it turns out the correct answer is “ice,” as in” pack ice, ice pack.” I could not think of a third three – letter possibility. Can anybody?
On another matter entirely, I have been plugging ahead with my rereading of the books I will assign next semester in my course at UNC on political philosophy. One third of the course will be devoted to A Theory of Justice. I am going to ask the students also to read the book I wrote about Rawls as part of that segment of the course. I published it 44 years ago and have not looked at since. Yesterday I finished reading it for the first time since it appeared and I was appalled to discover how technical it is. I am afraid I am going to have to warn the students that this will be a very hard course. On the other hand, once they get finished with that we will move on to The Racial Contract by the late Charles Mills and that will be a really boffo way to wrap up the course. What a wonderful book that is and what a great loss for Mills to die so young.
But then all death is a great loss. Emily Dickinson somewhere wrote a poem asking why God requires us to die in order to see Him. Since He is omnipotent, He could have arrange things differently, after all.