Now faith is the substance of things hoped for, the evidence of things not seen

John Darnielle has a column at Slate today about his 1995 song “Cubs in 5” and what it means now, with the Cubs in the World Series. It’s characteristically Darnielle, taking an unassuming detail like a baseball team breaking a 70-year-long drought, connecting it to a failed romantic relationship, and then building from there to a meditation on faith despite observable evidence.


  • Data
  • Sources
  • Backing


In “BEAM: A Rhetorical Vocabulary for Teaching Research-Based Writing,” Joseph Bizup advocates for a new vocabulary around the use of evidence and sources for students. Instead of primary, secondary, and tertiary as the main classifications of sources, Bizup proposes the acronym BEAM:

  • Background for materials a writer relies on for general information or for factual evidence;
  • Exhibit for materials a writer analyzes or interprets;
  • Argument for materials whose claims a writer engages; and
  • Method for materials from which a writer takes a governing concept or derives a manner of working.

Work Cited

Bizup, Joseph. “BEAM: A Rhetorical Vocabulary for Teaching Research-Based Writing.” Rhetoric Review 27.1: 2008. 72-86.