John McIntyre, whom James Wolcott calls "the Dave Brubeck of the art and craft of copy editing," writes on language, editing, journalism, and other manifestations of human frailty. Comments welcome. Identifying his errors relieves him of the burden of omniscience. Write to, befriend at Facebook, or follow at Twitter: @johnemcintyre. Back 2009-2012 at the original site, and now at

Sunday, May 17, 2009

A toast for my son

John Paul Lucien McIntyre, Bachelor of Arts, St. John's College, Annapolis, Maryland, May 17. 2009.

His senior essay was on the salute to God, the treatment of divinity, in Newton's Principia and Darwin's Origin of Species. This was the toast at the celebratory luncheon:

Charles Darwin wrote at the end of On the Origin of Species, "There is grandeur in this view of life ... [that] from so simple a beginning endless forms most beautiful and most wonderful have been, and are being, evolved." On a smaller scale, John Paul Lucien McIntyre, from the study of the great books of Western civilization, and from the hard school of experience, has been, and will continue to be, evolving.

To J.P.


  1. O rare JP. And O rare JE, K, and AEM. Hearty congratulations to the whole McIntyre/Capcara clan.

  2. Congratulations to John Paul! You must be a proud papa!

  3. Congratulations and best wishes to the whole family as you all continue to evolve.

    Peace and blessings

  4. Interesting that Darwin's use of evolve here is non-technical; he himself never used the term evolution to describe his theory of natural selection by descent with modification.

  5. Congratulations to your entire family on this grand occasion.

    Nancy Wagner

  6. Mr. McIntyre,

    I am a reader of your blog (and a reporter) and in a post a while back, while the blog was still posted via The Sun, you mentioned your son was an undergraduate at St. John's.

    Well, I heard his name called during rehearsals Saturday and remembered that he was your son and that I read your blog. I just graduated from St. John's Graduate Institute.

    So congrats to him and, well, to myself too.

    ~Jared A. Favole

  7. Mazel tov to JP! (But where's his bow tie?!) St.John's Great Books program is a terrific one. May it never fade.

    Sadly, you and your progeny are still badly needed in the world of work. On the plane to my consulting assignment this morning, I overheard the men behind me discussing a project; one said about the project's report, "Well, obviously, anyone can do the proofreading...." The rest of the conversation was a blur, as I was stricken with sudden nausea.

  8. And great congrats. Karen and I graduated our youngest this month, too.

  9. Congratulations and best wishes!
    I have always envied those who attended St. John's and The Great Books studies.
    Earlier in life Uncle Sam had a great need for me in Southeast Asia. Never made it back to the books...perhaps in retirement!!!

  10. Patricia the TerseMay 30, 2009 at 2:43 AM

    In my next life,I'm going to do my undergraduate work at St John's, Annapolis. Gaudeamus, McIntyres!