Saturday, June 2, 2012



The title of my homily is, “Hey Jude!”

Today’s first reading is from The Letter of Jude. Today - the 8th Saturday in Ordinary Time -  is the only time - but only every other year -  that this reading might be read at Mass. It’s a quiet, unknown, rarely heard "book" in the Bible.

It’s called, “The Letter of Jude”, but scholars vary on whether it was actually a letter. It’s a document from the early church - perhaps from around 80 or 90 A.D.  It doesn’t even have chapters - just verses - 25 of them. It  can be read calmly in 2 minutes.


Reading its title, triggered for me the song by the Beatles, “Hey Jude” - which came out in August 1968.

Do you remember the comment made by John Lennon that the Beatles are better known than Jesus Christ? That comment caused uproar and reaction. From what I remember - and from what I looked up - he didn’t actually say what they said he said - the stuff that caused the uproar. He simply said kids were into rock and roll and the Beatles more than they were into religion. For Christians that would mean they were listening to the Beatles more than Jesus Christ.  If he had said  that their song, “Hey Jude” was more popular than say, The Letter of Jude in the New Testament, I don't believe he would have caused an uproar.

Last night I listened to the song, Hey Jude, twice and then I read The Letter of Jude twice.  No doubt about it, the song Hey Jude would have more grab and influence than The Letter of Jude.

The song lyrics of Hey Jude tell Jude to take a sad song and make it better. The song says, “Don’t be afraid.” The song says, “Don’t carry the world upon your shoulder.”

Paul McCartny said he wrote the song while driving  to see John Lennon’s son - Jules. The kids parent’s marriage had broken up - due to John Lennon’s affair  with Yoko Ono. Paul wanted to show some support to Jules. After mulling over the words, he changed "Jules" to "Jude" - because he thought it sounded better that way.

The song had the longest run of any of the Beatles’ singles on the American Music Charts.

It has a nice beat - if you like the Beatles - and it’s a rather long song - 7 minutes. Check it out and check out The Letter of Jude.


I found it difficult to come up with something helpful for a homily in today's two readings. So besides my off beat comments about the song, "Hey Jude," I'm going to simply present 4 observations that I picked up about the Letter of Jude. If I sound a bit off this morning, it's simply because this homily feels a bit odd or out of sync to be honest. 

1) The Letter of Jude is only 2 minutes. Some say the best words are in it its ending - which we heard today. There we find mention of the Trinity:  the Father - referred to as this only God of Our Savior, then Jesus Christ our Lord, as well as Holy Spirit.  That is very important - and perhaps that's why this letter made it into the  Bible.

2) That brings up the question of the canon - the so called “List of the Books that make up the Bible.”  This book made it. Compared to books like the Early Church book, The Didache (1) , if you read both, you’d say, “What?”  Folks in the Early Church said just that about The Letter of Jude. “Why is this book in the Bible?”

3) Last night I went looking for what others said about The Letter of Jude. I was amazed to notice that that William Barclay came up with a 50 page commentary on Jude. (2)

4) Lastly, I found out last night in my checking out commentaries on Jude, that Jude is a polemic. It's an attack. The author is yelling. He is complaining. He’s warning everyone about certain people who are getting into the Church and they will be ruin of it.

Other than my bringing up the Hey Jude song by the Beatles, this last point might be of the most interest - this description of The Letter of Jude as being a polemic.

Without being polemic myself, let me quote from a Lutheran Biblical Scholar named Gerhard Krodel. He wrote the following in his comments on The Letter of Jude.

“As a teenager in Germany I heard one particular sermon, a pure denunciation of the idolatry of the Nazi religion of “blood and land,” of Moloch worship and the hatred of Cain. It was not  based on Jude, but it made a lasting impression. The enemy then, as in Jude’s situation, was the compromiser and synthesizer within the church.”

Then Gerhard Krodel concludes his comments on The Letter of Jude this way. “However, most situations don’t present us with clear cut alternatives, but with various shades of gray. Polemics itself becomes demonic the moment the preacher loves it, venting his spleen, riding his hobby horse, putting people down for the sheer fun of it, and imagining that he speaks of God.  Since time and again teachers and preachers have engaged in polemics for the wrong reason (e.g. the earth is flat and the Bible is inerrant in every historical detail) and at the wrong occasion (e.g., when God's grace and Christ’s Lordship were not really at stake but rather the preacher’s myopic view of them) it may be just as well that Jude has not become a household word.” (3) 


(1) The Didache, Faith, Hope and Life of the Earliest Christian Communities,  50-70 C.E., Aaron Milavec, The Newman Press, New York, Mahwah, N.J. 2003

(2) William Barclay, The Letters of John and Jude, Revised Edition, The Daily Study Bible Series, The Westminster Press, Philadelphia, pages 155 to 207.

(3)  Gerhard Krodel, "The Letter of Jude", page 98, in Proclamation Commentaries, Hebrews-James-1 and 2 Peter-Jude-Revelation, Gerhard Krodel, Editor, Fortress Press, Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, 1977


June  2,  2012  Quote for Today

"No son is as good as his father 
in his sister's eyes. 
No father is as good as his son 
in his mother's eyes."

Irish Saying

Friday, June 1, 2012



The title of my homily for this Eight Friday in Ordinary Time is, “Love and Like.”

I put a “Quote for the Day” on my blog. I have a bunch of quote books and grab one and look for a quote that grabs me.

The one I found and put on my blog for today is: “We like someone BECAUSE. We love someone ALTHOUGH.”

Once more: “We like someone BECAUSE. We love someone ALTHOUGH.”

Then sometimes I ask some questions. For today's quote I asked: Is that your experience? Then I asked 2 further questions that I would be interested in hearing answers for: “Name 5 people you love and then list 3 things they do that bug you about them? Name 5 people you like and then list 3 things they do that bug you?”

It hit me: Would it be harder to name faults and annoyances in those we like compared to those we love?

Looking around the room, it looks like all of us have had a lot of experience. Some people are easy to like; some people are difficult to take.

My niece Monica once told me. She’s over 50 now. “There’s one in every office.”  I asked her, “What do you mean by one?” “You know,” she said, “someone who is a royal pain you know where.”

Is that true? Does every office, every parish, every neighborhood, every group, have one person whom we just don’t like?

I’m a member of a religious community in the Catholic Church: the Redemptorists. I’ve been stationed in New York City, New Jersey, Washington D.C., Pennsylvania, Wisconsin, upstate New York, Ohio, and now Annapolis. Looking back I’ve said to several people, I’ve always been blessed to have at least one guy in each place where I have been stationed who was a great guy - in other words, someone I liked. Thinking about my quote for today: is the reverse true? To be honest, I’ve never sat down and thought about answers to that question.

There have been difficult people - some strange rangers - that I have lived with. There have been more than one in a few places. One of my books is entitled, How To Deal With Difficult People.I've jokingly told guys I lived with, “Thanks for the help in writing that book!”


For starters there are two types of people: those who are easy to like and those who are difficult to like.

I like the saying, “There are two kinds of people: those who cause happiness when they enter a room and those who cause happiness whenever they leave a room.”

As priest I’ve been to more different nursing homes than most priests in the United States. Having lived on the road for 8 ½ years and given lots of parish missions -  part of our parish mission was to visit nursing homes in the afternoons. From that experience I realized there are two kinds of people in nursing homes - or anywhere - those who are an easy visit - and those who are a difficult visit. By difficult I don’t mean dementia or aging. I mean they have a difficult personality, attitude, or overall ambiance.

I saw that as a little boy on our street in Brooklyn. There were two kinds of older people: those who when your spaldeen (pink rubber ball) went into their front yard, they were happy to get it for you and say something like, “Hope you’re having a great game!” and those who are grouches and make it difficult in retrieving your spaldeen.

Then and there without knowing it,  I made my first conscious life decision. It was not to be a grouch when I get old.

Today’s first reading has this sentence. We’ve heard it a hundred times. It’s why I am preaching on this theme of Love and Like. The sentence is this: “Above all, let your love for one another be intense,
because love covers a multitude of sins” (1 Peter 4:8.)

It doesn’t say: "Above all, let your liking of another be  intense, because liking covers a multitude of sins."

Liking is easy. Love can be difficult. Forgiveness can be difficult.

That’s what our faith teaches and preaches.

So getting back to my earlier question and wondering: I would think it would be easier to find things that bug us and things we don’t like in those we love - more than in those we like.

Next, I would think - but I’m not sure - but I would think - it would be more difficult to pick 3 things we don’t like - 3 things that bug us - about those we like - compared to those we love.


Today’s gospel - Mark 11: 11-26 - talks about a fig tree. We see variations of this story in Matthew, Mark and Luke.

Israel was compared to a fig tree - and the preachers and the prophets would use the image in sermons - challenging the folks to produce good fruit in their lives.

I found in The Parables of Jesus, a book by Joachim Jeremias, a piece on gardening that I never noticed before. [Cf. pages 119-120.] He says that in Israel the fig tree is unique compared to other trees and bushes and plants. At times in the year, a fig tree really looks dead. Then comes a time you can look into its very thin branches - which are translucent - and see the sap rising. What looks dead - is about to come back to life.

We’re getting older - maybe we look dead to some folks who are young - but don’t count us out. We can always start producing fruit. Grouches can change and surprise everyone. I’ve see that happen to at least 3 priests. Maybe they changed because they started to love more than to just like or dislike others - and love covers a multitude of sins.


June  1,  2012   Quote for Today

"We like someone BECAUSE.
We  love someone ALTHOUGH."


Questions: Do you agree with the truism above?  Name 5 people you love and then name 3 of their faults or things that they do that bug you?  Next name 5 people you like and then name 3 of their faults or things that bug you about them?  Which was easier to do?

Thursday, May 31, 2012



I was in the hospital and you showed up with a funny helium balloon and your love. Thank you.

I was down - really down - because I had done something really dumb - and you’re the only one in the family who was willing to be seen with me. Thank you.

I was in jail and I heard you defended me by mentioning the old Indian saying, “Don’t judge anyone till you have walked a mile in their moccasins.” Thank you.

I was in the nursing home and you came with haste to visit me - wrinkled incontinent me - and you stayed with me for 47 minutes. Thank you.

I was standing there 5 yards from the casket. We had been married 37 years and cancer visited us and you came in haste at the end of a  busy day to stand on line and then to be with us in the funeral parlor. You didn’t have to say a word. Thank you.

I was by myself - just standing there at the gathering feeling like a stranger in a strange land -  with a strange accent - and you saw me, came over and said, “Hello!” Thank you.

I was me - labeled "homosexual" or what have you - and the church and some others were ranting at us  -  wanting to throw rough rocky words at us and you didn’t. You understood. Thank you.

I was overweight and you didn’t give me “the look” or hand me "the diet". You simply were there with me. Thank you.

I was fired from the company - dropped - whatever word they used - and you called me two weeks later to hear if I and the family were okay - and “What’s happening?” and whether I got another job or job offer. Thank you.

I was at the coffee break and people were arguing politics, politics, politics and I was sick and tired of politics, politics, politics - and you came over and showed me pictures of your grand kids - and we had a great conversation about the college one was going to, the job another just got, and another was about to come home from Afghanistan. Thank you. Thank you. Thank You, Lord.

I was the reader at church and read the wrong reading and 13 people gave me the “Stupid!” look - but you said nothing - better you smoothly changed your sermon and referred gracefully to what I had read. Thank you.

I was pregnant - nervous because maybe I was too old for this - but you came in haste to visit me and I could hear my baby jumping for joy within me - and because you too were pregnant and I could hear myself chanting, “My soul sings out the greatness of the Lord; my spirit finds joy in God my savior. Amen. Thank you.”


Painting on top, "Visitation"  - found on line by typing into Google, "Paintings - Visitation".

This is a reflection I wrote this morning for today's feast of the Visitation - May 31, 2012..

©  Andy Costello, Reflections, 2012

May  31,  2012  Quote for Today

"Don't make the mistake 
of letting yesterday
use up too much of today."


Wednesday, May 30, 2012


May 30,  2012  Quote for the Day

"The sun, 
with all those planets
revolving around it 
and dependent on it,
can still ripen 
a bunch of grapes 
as if it had nothing else
in the universe to do."

Galileo Galilei

Tuesday, May 29, 2012



The title of my homily for this 8th Tuesday in Ordinary Time  is, “Be Holy!”

The last six words from today’s first reading are: “Be holy because I am holy” [1 Peter 1:16].

Be Holy!

Now that’s a lifetime challenge - a lifetime puzzle - a lifetime question - a lifetime wondering.  

Be Holy!

What does that mean?


I’ve been on 18 or 19 St. Mary’s High School Kairos’ retreats. One of the talks and small group discussions is on “Holiness”.

A high school senior has to prepare a talk on holiness. The notes on the talk call for the kid to list people he or she thinks are holy. Then in small groups the kids are all asked to name peers and adults they think are holy. It’s a challenge.  As I listen to each speaker and each group tackle this question - which is also a talk in the Cursillo Retreat from which Kairos has been adapted for college and high school kids - it gets me thinking. What is holiness?

What I hear from the kids is that a holy person is someone who tries to be a good person - someone who is generous - someone who goes to church - someone who prays - someone who is not messing around - someone who tries to do their best - someone who serves and volunteers - someone who is a straight arrow.

If you were asked to describe what it means to be holy - what would your description sound like? Whom do you consider a holy person?


In the Jewish scriptures the word for holy is “Qados” or “Qiddes” or “Qds” - or variations from the root of that word. It  means “separate” - “different” -“apart from the ordinary”.

God in the Jewish scriptures is seen as HOLY - separate - unapproachable. God is up there - out there - unreachable - inaccessible - in the Holy of Holies above the heavens - and in the unallowed part of the temple.

People who have God experiences -  experiences of the HOLY - are depicted as being in the presence of  silence, awe, light, majesty, mystery - holy smoke - and that person feels their difference and distance from God.

People who have God experiences - experience their sinfulness in contrast.


In the Christian Scriptures one hears this same take.

However, they also get glimpses of another take - in experiencing Jesus Christ. God - the all Holy One - the inaccessible - the highest - has become the lowest. Jesus comes as a baby - one of us - and even lower - Jesus becomes our servant - our foot washer - our healer - our brother. We can touch the hem of his robe. Yet we killed him as a horrible blasphemer - and a radical. They threw dice for his robe. This table turner in temples was nailed him to a cross and died almost all alone - with people cursing at him from below. Then this Christ is lifted in exaltation by the Father. He is Risen - and appeared amongst us in several ways. Then he ascended into eternity - the Eternal Banquet - Paradise. The great text in the New Testament for all this is Philippians 2: 5b-11.

So there they are the two takes on holiness: distance - the heights - inaccessibility; then the other side of the spectrum:  closeness - accessibility and the bottom.

The Pharisees tried to be holy by using externals. They tried to distance themselves from the rest of folks. They tried to make themselves higher - more correct - more right - and the rest of are wrong. They used their knowledge and the Law - to try to make themselves look like the best and most colorful fish in the fish tank and they wanted everyone else - the rest of humanity - to be seen as bottom feeders.


So when it comes to religion, we can see these two polar opposites in play at times.

Religious titles, robes, tassels, seating, ceremonies - are used as opportunities to stand out and stand above others.  

If Jesus said anything,  it’s that holiness is getting down to the bottom of life and to each other. It’s to go within oneself. It’s to find God in inside places. That meeting - those ongoing inner sessions - with God - can be inner prayer.

The Holy of Holies is within each person’s inner room - inner temple.

So stop judging. Stop thinking we know what’s going on in other people’s inner rooms. So stop babbling or adding on public prayers to look good in public.

Be quiet and swim around the bottom of the fish tank. Catch who’s hiding down there.

Humility is putting down the stones we throw at others - so as to feel and think ourselves more holy than them. Better! It’s getting in touch with the jagged rocks of sin within ourselves.

Surprise! It’s right here we can find communion and connection with God.

The pride and self pushing stuff separates us from God and each other.

Jesus ate with sinners and dined with them - was in communion with them - and this upset those who thought the opposite.


These are just a few takes on holiness.

As I said in the beginning of this homily, what holiness is, is a lifetime quest and wondering. This is inner seesaw stuff.

Let me close with one last take on holiness. Last night it hit me that laughter has to be a part of holiness. However, I have to do some more thinking about that.

If I hear one sound from God, it’s laughter.  If I hear one sound from Jesus, it’s laughter. Today’s gospel ends with one more joke about holiness from Jesus, “The first will be last and many who were last will be first.” [Cf. Mark 10:31.]

I look forward to heaven. My imaginary glimpse of heaven contains at times the sounds, “Holy, Holy, Holy.” Yet at other times I also hear, “Ha, ha, ha, ha.” To some holy rollers, this might be the last thing in the world [ooops heaven] they would imagine. I’m assuming they are wrong - of course. And of course, I’m right.  But I know and I assume I will be wrong.  Holiness is of God - because as that first reading ended, “Be holy because I am holy.”

P.S.  I finished the first draft of this homily last night. Then I walked down to CVS to buy fish oil capsules. I saw that they were on sale just yesterday - Memorial Day - in a 2 for the price of 1 sale. I was wearing an 20 year old faded blue T-Shirt - which I was wearing  - plus my old comfortable dungaree shorts - and a pair of white sneakers. I didn’t notice till I got back that I had on two different color socks. After leaving CVS,  I’m coming along the bottom of  Main Street. to get back here.  I spot outside O’Brien’s - 6 seminarians or young priests - dressed in cassocks and serious white collars. They are standing there talking with the outside patrons. It was at least 90 degrees. I should have asked who they were - but didn’t. As I walking up Green Street I found myself laughing - laughing - laughing. I was seeing my sermon in another form. Be holy!
Task: Chapter V of the Vatican Council's Dogmatic Constitution on the Church, Lumen Gentium, is entitled, "The Call of the Whole Church to Holiness." Read that chapter and pull out the key ways it describes what holiness is.
Task: Last Advent, 2011, the Roman Catholic Church came out with a new English translation of the Roman Missal. Its language is different - not down to earth - compared to the text it replaced. Check it out and see if those who got this translation into our hands - are the type who see holiness as putting a distance between the laity and God. [That's my take - but you figure out your take.] 

May 29,  2012   Quote for Today

"Life is like a game of tennis:
the person who serves well seldom loses."



Name 5 people who serve you?  How do you express your gratitude towards them?  What service do you provide the people in your life? How do they express their gratitude towards you?

Monday, May 28, 2012


May 28, 2012  Quote for Today - Memorial Day 2012

And pile them high at Gettysburg
And pile them high at Ypres and Verdun.

Ten years, ten years, and passengers 
                  ask the conductor:
What place is this?
Where are we now?

Carl Sandburg [1878-1967], "Grass", 1918

Memorial Day - formerly called Decoration Day - started after the Civil War - but in the last century was extended to include in our memories and our prayers all those men and women who died in all our wars.

Picture was found on line.

Sunday, May 27, 2012


 [Today is the feast of Pentecost. As a change of pace - instead of a homily - last night I decided on writing a story to try to capture a few of the themes in today's readings. Come Holy Spirit!]

He had been thinking - and imaging - and picturing - and planning  - for weeks now - how he’d be home for Memorial Day Weekend - back  to the States - back in his own house with mom and dad and family - back in his own bed - home - home for his baby sister’s wedding - on  Memorial Day Weekend.

But it looked like it might not happen….

All kinds of planes -  from all around the world were grounded in Frankfurt, Germany and a dozen other airports in Europe.

They were stuck. After they landed - and some with difficulty - they couldn’t take off. They were just sitting there on airport tarmacs and at terminals all around  Europe.

And it wasn’t because of terrorists - or the weather. It was because of a major European computer breakdown - meltdown - overload - all over Europe. It happened that Thursday - on his way home from Afghanistan to Frankfurt, Germany to Dulles Airport in Virginia.

There he was stuck in an airport  - in a terminal - in Frankfurt, Germany - in his military fatigues - all by himself - with an enormous grouping of people from all over the world.

Cell phones - I-phones - Blackberries, monitors - TV sets - were all down. It was a major glitch that "gicked" up everything - along with lights and electrical systems. Everything had become interconnected - and therefore over dependent on computers - and computers controlled everything -  radar, electrical systems, etc. etc. etc. - lots of etceteras.

He parked himself on the floor against a wall and he began watching how human beings responded and dealt with adversity - and how people treated one another  -  when in adversity.

As a Marine - as someone who was in some horrible situations in Iraq and now in Afghanistan - this was nothing.

He began to notice the crush or the rush in the spirit of people in the big airport terminal - people who differed in outfits, suits, dresses, robes - headgear - skin color - weight - age - language and luggage.

Some people let their grouch out with growls; some people were reaching out to help other people - especially mothers and grandmothers with little children.

He tried to nap - but it was too noisy. Besides that -  kids would bump into him and others - while playing games - while adults were doing other things. Some people would yell and get angry  for being bumped or woken up - and some people would give the kid who fell into them a smile or a piece of gum or candy.

He wondered what he’d be like if and when he became a parent.

He took his computer from out his pack. The battery was good. He began typing down observations in the Word Processor part of his computer - questions and comments about what he saw in front of him - and what was going on around him.

Question: “Is an airport a microcosm of this whole world of ours?”

Comment and question:  “There are two kinds of people: those with a good spirit and those with a bad spirit. Is it as simple as that?”

Comment and question: “Mom - and especially dad - were always so, so patient. Is that why all five of us kids are known to be such easy going persons?”

Question: "Do all babies speak the same language?"

“Comment: "There are two kinds of people: those who share what they have with others and those who keep what they have to themselves.”

Comment: "There are complainers and there are those who can adjust to what they cannot contain or control.”

Question and comment: "Who said language was a barrier? It looks to me that people who want to communicate with people find ways to communicate with other people. Nemo problema. And smiles are a great way to start.”

Comment: “There are readers of books and readers of people. It looks like all those in the terminal who  are reading have old fashioned books and magazines and newspapers. I wonder how many have Kindles and Nooks."

Question and comment: “Did that fight over there start because someone asked someone if they could take their stuff off the empty seat next to them? It looks like there are three kinds of people: those who won't move their stuff; those who move their stuff so   others can sit; and those who get up and give their seat to a mom with a child or to an older person?”

Comment: "There are watch watches and people who use their cell phones for keeping time. Now that cell phones are down, they have to ask the watch watchers for the time. It’s interesting how some people are more time conscious than other people.”

Comment: "It’s out of my hands whether I’ll get home for my baby sister’s wedding or not - so time will tell.”

Comment: "There are touchers and there are people who never touch the other person. Interesting.”

Question: "Is that guy over there on his lap top - the guy who is looking around -  is he like me -  jotting down what he’s seeing? Oops I think he’s watching me? Look he just smiled.”

Question: "Is this what novelists or artists do: go to public places and watch and listen to others.”

Question: "Does God watch everything we do?”

Question: "How does prayer work? If I pray, will God speed up the solution to this mess?”

Comment: "I don’t know. I’ve heard that the Al Qaeda pray every morning to kill us in Afghanistan. I pray to God to get them to change their minds. Yet, I don’t know how prayer works.” He paused and thought some more. Then he jotted down: “Lord, please give patience to the men and women working right now to fix all these computer problems.”

Comment: "Hope they don’t run out of toilet paper. Thank God the toilets flush. But it is getting a bit hot in here - without air conditioning - and it looks like airport windows don’t have ways they can be opened.”

He began thinking about the war in Afghanistan. Question: “Two hundred years from now, will what we did there have an impact on their national life?”

He had read a book called, The Bookseller of Kabul by Asne Seierstad. It gave him a glimpse of how women were treated there by the Taliban. "When we get out, will the Taliban spirit and take on life crush women’s education and freedom gains?"  That book gave him one more reason for being in Afghanistan - but he asked himself, "Can we be the world’s police - and democratizers - and protectors? Big questions. Big questions."

He thought about his future: marriage, family, job, what have you. He tried some sleep again  - and this time it came. His big military duffle bag and pack made a good pillow.

Suddenly he woke up to the sounds of overwhelming cheers and clapping. People were  standing up and hugging each other and gathering their stuff. Lights were going on. Monitors were starting to post schedules and timetables. "It looks like we’re back in business."

"It looks like I’m going to get home for my sister’s wedding." He tried his cell phone. It wasn’t working yet. Everyone else was doing the same thing. Some cursed in a spirit of frustration; others seemed calm and cool - knowing in time - all will be well once again.

Then he noticed someone on a cell phone and she was talking to someone somewhere - and she wasn’t speaking English. As she talked - he understood by her gestures and her smile - that she was happy. Things were good - and she’d be where she was headed to real soon - to share in the reality of whomever she was talking to.

Just then his phone went off - and he was talking to his sister. “I might be late, but I’ll be there. Wouldn’t miss your wedding for the world. Save me a big piece of cake and a big hug and a prayer and please say a prayer for me.”

May 27, 2012  Quote for Today

"Ten rules for getting rid of the blues:
Go out and do something nice 
for someone else,
then repeat it nine times."