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Friday, January 16, 2009

Janitors of Our Own Lives

Since we're at the half way point of January, I thought it would be a good time to take a look at the Roman God Janus, for whom the month of January is named. Janus is an interesting figure in that he has two faces allowing him to look forward and backward simultaneously (which is why mid-month is as good a time as any). Janus is also the God of halls and doors (which is where the word “janitor” derives) and the God of endings and beginnings.

Sara Anne Corrigan, a local columnist, wrote an interesting article on January being the best time to look forward and backward at life. “We are, as a species, blessed and sometimes cursed with the capacity to see ourselves, our lives, on a continuum…to contemplate our past, our present and our future (think about Scrooge’s odyssey).”

Corrigan suggests that January is the perfect time for contemplation. And where better place than the woods or some other natural environment for contemplation? Now is the perfect time to take walk or hike in the brisk air of winter (low of 0 degrees Fahrenheit here in Indiana today) and sloughing off the detritus of the old year and embracing the positive path of the new year. I’d even suggest taking out a little snack and Two Faced Janus (New Year Ale) from J.W. Lees and Co. Brewery as we examine the kind footprints we leave behind.

(Not sure the above clock is from L.W. Lees, but you take what you can steal)

“So here it is: January,” Corrigan writes. “A time to look back and a time to look forward. A time to forgive ourselves for those things we have done and those things we have left undone… time to have a chat with God… to remember the Serenity Prayer and embrace its wisdom. A time to plan, at least, to do just a little better.”

Sir Bowie “janitor of my own life” of Greenbriar


  1. Nice one... that almost counts as a Homily as well as a Blog.

    I Like the Roman coin...and the Clock ( i am big on historical dial designs, if anybody wants to send me any pics anytime they would be gratefully recieved. Compasses and barometers as well. I collect the designs )

    Funny enough our Janitor at High School looked a bit like that... with that same worried look he had when he first came out of prison.

    Sir Dayvd ( Clocking off ) of Oxfordshire

  2. Yesterday was a great day for that brisk walk...Keeper Dog and I enjoyed about 45 minutes of it, then we were happy to get back in the warm confines of our little woodfire-heated home here in the Lyon County holler. She is looking forward to doing it again today! And we hope that this little cold spell is the beginning and end of these kinds of temperatures this winter.

    Sir Paul of Lyon (aka, Janus of Sugar Tree Valley

  3. Being a "two faced" Gemini, Janus seems like the perfect character to go have a hearty ale and a brisk walk with.

    I was shedding old sins and forgiving myself during Advent. Now I'm shedding pounds and back to working out (how original of me!). Unfortunately that means shedding those two extra beers I would have each day, so now I'm down to 1-2 a day, and some days none. I guess you could say I'm in training for Lent, which will be here before you know it.

    Then, it will be time to get the gut ready for the British Beer to be consumed in July when we visit Sir D. I'm also going to brush up on my darts, seeing how I have been challenged by the "British Finger" already!

    Sir Hook Who Keeps on Ticking of Warrick

  4. funny I'm shedding the pounds for May 23rd - why?

    It's Sir Hook's birthday!
    oh and our daughter's wedding day!

    and the July trip- we need to meet and get some real planning / reservations done!

    hint hint

    Lady Suzanne of Greenbriar

  5. January is my birthday (tomorrow in fact ~ near the middle of the month). A woman with whom I work considers birthdays to be one's true new year. A concept which I have adopted.

    I say look forward, but glance back.

    Sir James (last year in his 40's coming up) of Taylor

  6. Happy Birthday Sir James! We will hoist a glass in your honor tomorrow as we cheer the Steelers and Cards to victory!

    The Chinese believe that you're already one year old on the day you are born. I like the idea of starting a new year on your birthday. With mine in May it would give me a chance to check on my Janus resolutions and update or discard them. Of course my resolution this year was to have no resolutions!

    5th Gear and a Review Mirror (A title for a new song or book, I will remember!) are two of the greatest inventions for the Knightly Explorer! Continue to travel well!

    Sir Hook the Two Faced Speed Racer of Warrick