Monday, August 30, 2010

Kay and Bill Coughlin Party

A joyous celebration took place yesterday at my cousin Jackie Coughlin's house in Mentor, Ohio. We celebrated Aunt Kay Coughlin's birthday (LXXXIII) and Uncle Bill's restored health.
The top photo shows Jackie Coughlin with her dad, our Uncle Bill (he's 86 and a half!); middle photo shows Bob, Jim, and Kevin Coughlin with Uncle Bill Coughlin; bottom photo shows Mary Ellen Coughlin Zaremba with Aunt Kay Coughlin (Ed Zaremba is hiding behind the flowers).
This was a wonderful, wonderful celebration!

Friday, August 27, 2010

Poem for a New Baby

These Slow Days with the New Baby

(for Colin Jude, born August 18, 2010,
and for Ed and Julia)

Enjoy these first slow days and weeks
With this precious new baby. Rock him
In the waning days of summer out on the deck,
Down by the lake. No other tasks as important
As holding this baby to your heart,
Talking to him, cooing in his ear,
Watching him breathe, watching him sleep.

These days won’t come again, won’t last long.
Sing a song to him, a lullaby, enjoy these sacred
Slow days with the new baby.

“Grampa” Bob Coughlin, August 27, 2010

Tuesday, August 24, 2010

Mike Celizic's Long Goodbye

A few days ago I received a stunning email from my old friend Mike Celizic informing me that he is seriously ill and might not have long to live (actually, Mike, in his own straightforward style, made the point much more bluntly). I have known Mike since 1966 or '67. We both come from Northeast Ohio, I from Euclid and Mike from the Painesville area (or from Leroy Township, to be more precise). We both attended the University of Notre Dame and joined in the Innsbruck study-abroad program. Our Freshman year at Notre Dame involved intense (really really intense) study of the German language and the German and Austrian culture. We were in different classes at Notre Dame because I was a raw beginner in German while Mike had studied it in high school and had even spent some time as a high school student studying in Austria.

We really got to know each other in the summer of 1967 as students in the Salzburg Sommerschule, 5 or 6 weeks of immersion in German language and Austrian life; and then in the intense year that followed at the University of Innsbruck. We shared this experience with 35 other guys--wonderful guys who became life-long friends. We know enough about each other to qualify for sainthood or waterboarding. It's not a stretch to say that the Notre Dame Innsbruckers grew to love each other in Salzburg and Innsbruck.

So my heart broke with this news from Mike.

Mike is a renowned and honored journalist, who began his career in 1970 with the Painesville Telegraph. At the Telegraph he did everything! I think he probably even cleaned up in the evening. One of his more important gigs was as a sports writer for the Bergen Record, a major paper out of the Hackensack, New Jersey area. He will end his career as a writer for, an author of about 7 books on sports, and a blogger of some stunning articles documenting his own illness and facing his own mortality. . . . .[more coming very soon]

New Grandbaby, New Aunts

Above, Baby Colin with two of his aunts: Aunt Emily and Aunt Carolan. Emily came up from Athens, Ohio, to visit Colin; and Carolan took a break from her work with Montana Conservation Corps to visit her new nephew.

Wednesday, August 18, 2010

Welcome, Colin Jude! Happy Birthday!

Welcome to Colin Jude on his Birthday! Your family rejoices, Colin Baby!

Tuesday, August 17, 2010

Grampa, Grossvater, Seanathair--Soon and Very Soon

Today or tomorrow I will be a grandfather for the first time. It is something I look forward to with the greatest excitement. I feel more anxiety than when we had our own three children! Maybe it's the difference between being a spectator and being in the game. I've been trying to walk the delicate line of when to help my daughter and son-in-law and when to keep my distance. This is their drama, their life, and I will find my role in the magic. I hope this baby, not yet born, comes to know how much he or she was, is, loved--even before birth!

Meanwhile, as we await the birth, we pray for Julia, Ed, and the new baby:

Keep them, Lord, like the apple of your eye.
Shelter them under the shadow of your wings!

Wednesday, August 11, 2010

A More Standard Version of the Sermon on the Mount in Irish

I recently posted a link to the Gospel of Matthew in the Cork/Munster dialect of Irish. Below is a more standard Irish translation of the Sermon on the Mount (Matthew 5). This was found at the following website:

An tSeanmóir ar an Sliabh: Na Biáide

Nuair a chonaic sé na sluaite, chuaigh sé an sliabh suas. Shuigh sé síos agus tháinig a
dheisceabail chuige. 2Thosaigh sé ag caint leo á dteagasc agus dúirt:
3 “Is méanar dóibh seo atá bocht ó spiorad, óir is leo ríocht na bhflaitheas.
4 “Is méanar do lucht an dobróin, óir sólásófar iad.
5 “Is méanar dóibh seo atá ceansa, óir gheobhaidh siad an talamh mar oidhreacht.
6 “Is méanar dóibh seo a bhfuil ocras agus tart chun na fíréantachta orthu, óir sásófar
7 “Is méanar do lucht na trócaire, óir déanfar trócaire orthu.
8 “Is méanar dóibh seo atá glan ó chroí, óir feicfidh siad Dia.
9 “Is méanar do lucht síochána a dhéanamh, óir glaofar clann Dé orthu.
10 “Is méanar dóibh seo a d’fhulaing géarleanúint mar gheall ar an bhfíréantacht, óir is
leo ríocht na bhflaitheas.
11 “Is méanar daoibh féin nuair a thabharfar aithis daoibh agus a ghéarleanfar sibh, agus
nuair a chuirfear gach sórt drochrud in bhur leith go bréagach mar gheall ormsa.
12 “Bíodh áthas oraibh agus gairdeas, mar is mór é bhur dtuarastal ar neamh; óir is mar
sin a rinneadh géarleanúint ar na fáithe a chuaigh romhaibh.

Tuesday, August 10, 2010

The Sermon on the Mount, in Irish-Gaelic

There is a website for students of Irish-Gaelic called "Daltai" ( that has an English/Irish general discussion forum. I found a posting about a new County Cork (Munster) dialect version of the Gospel of St. Matthew. It's possible at this site to read the text of the Gospel and simultaneously hear the text. If you've never seen or heard Irish before, check it out! You'll find it a strange and interesting language indeed! Here's the link:

I think you can also click on the title of this blog entry to get to the Irish language site.