two down

Okay, so in the last week, the A's have traded both Hudson and Mulder. These guys have been the heart and soul of Oakland for the past few years and it really pains me to see them go. I know I'm supposed to trust in Billy Beane, but it's difficult - it doesn't seem like he's getting much for these guys. Some people say this is the same place the A's were at around 2000 when the Big Three were all noobs and hadn't proven themselves...we'll see... All I know is I loved going out to the Colloseum and rooting for these guys, and now I can't do that. Now, in fact, they are in freakin Atlanta and St. Louis. At least I won't have the pain of watching them pitch for someone else in the AL West. It's the end of an era, people.

Also, I have finally put up the pictures I took on my March 2004 trip to the Florida Keys. You can enjoy them here.


just when you thought i couldn't get geekier

The name of He-Man's cat sidekick came up in a conversation I had today, and I ended up having to go looking for the answer to the question. I had said the cat's name was Cringer, and someone else told me it was "BattleCat." I had He-Man on my birthday cake when I turned 5, so I thought I knew what I was talking about. As it happens, the cat's name was Cringer when He-Man was Adam, and after he does his little transformation, the wussy Cringer transforms into the brave Battle-Cat.

For more info on He-Man and how awesome he is, go here:


japanese lap pillows

They come up with some pretty weird stuff over there in Japan.

dearth! druthers!

This day at work is going to be pretty easy if first period is any indication. I have 2 AP Statistics classes and 3 Honors Algebra 2 classes. These kinds of kids tend to be easier to babysit in class. Add to that the fact that there is math work for them to hang out and do - and they actually tend to DO the work - means I should have a minimum of stress due to them.

The classroom I'm in today is behind the science wing of the school, and the science teachers have a cluster of little wireless access points. I managed to connect to one and it seems to be working for me so far, that's good. I can't get any games to run online, due to the school's firewall, but I can browse the web and do this kind of thing, so that's good enough for me.

I've had a dearth of profound thoughts lately. (Before you knock me for using "dearth," consider the only other words that come to mind when I was trying to communicate that thought were "shortitude" and "shortness," neither of which are, well, words.)

I am excited for this upcoming holiday - there is no good reason for me to not go to work when I have the opportunity, but for the next two weeks I have an excuse...there IS no work to be done here. I've been working on the next six months of youth ministry...aside from the Lock-In and oneeighty this month is pretty clear, and it feels good to be ahead of the game a bit. Anyway hopefully this means I'll be able to do some nice long stints with WoW next week. I will also do helpful things around the house for my wife who will be stuck at work. But I will also play lots of WoW, if I have my druthers.


some more questions

It's been a little while since I answered the questions I asked you to ask me - so now I'm going to get to my Dad's and to Frances' questions. Right now I'm subbing in a classroom, the kids are watching "Super Size Me" which you should watch if you haven't seen it. It's good/scary. Usually when I'm at home on the computer I am trying to get some time in with WoW so my little blog gets neglected. Here at school, however, I can take a few minutes out to type here.

My Dad's questions...
1) When was the last sunrise you watched, intentionally (not the last one you saw)?
I don't remember...

2) When was the last sunset you watched, intentionlly (again, not the ...) ?
Again, I don't remember...

3) If this was the last year of your life, and it could end at any time, what would you do?
Spend a lot of time writing, and with the people I care about most. Especially considering that at this point I'll only have a few weeks left.

And from Frances...
1) what book, other than the bible, has had the most influence on your life and/or thinking?

Dang, that's a hard one. I can't say if I've read any book that's really revolutionized my thinking or influenced it in a way that I can cite. There go my pretensions to being an educated person.

Some books I have read that may have influenced me are The Jesus I Never Knew, More Ready Than You Realize, and Spirit of the Disciplines to name a few.

2) which is the superior utensil (and why): forks or spoons?

Spoons are definitely superior. Anything a fork does that a spoon doesn't, you can do with your hands. But spoons? Well, with a spoon you can eat soup and other more liquidy things. You can't spear a piece of steak, but you can just pick that up. You can't enjoy a bowl of cereal with a fork, nor ice cream, or any of that. Forks suck!

3) which is more entertaining (and why): a cat in a beret or a monkey in a fez?

A cat in a beret might be funny for a moment, but it would just sit there and think about how great it was. A monkey in a fez, though - that I'd pay to see, because I enjoy monkey antics. Except the antics that would involve them throwing feces at me. That wouldn't be funny.


i am a huge nerd

I've been waiting for a long time for this day - World of Warcraft is now available to the general public for retail release. After two stress tests and an Open Beta, I am really excited to play this game.

Most of you who read this don't play the game and therefore don't understand. It's okay, feel free to shake your head and cluck your tongues at me. I deserve it. I'm flying to Vegas tomorrow night to visit my Mom with some other family for Thanksgiving, so I've got to get as much game time in as I can today and tomorrow. Don't want to fall too far behind my buddies.

Anyway have a great Thanksgiving yourself, and I will answer the oustanding questions when I come back.


hawaii - it's official

Today I booked my ticket to fly to Hawaii on July 13th and return July 21st. I'll be heading out there for a family reunion with Janelle's family. Which is now also my family. I'm really excited about heading out there. Most I even paid for a plane ticket, but it wasn't bad. About a $100 price difference between buying it yesterday or today. Can't explain it, but oh well. I'm going to Hawaii. Nyah nyah.

answers to a few questions

A couple posts ago I asked for questions, a few have been given, so here's my shot at the answers.

From the father-in-law...
1. What is the best time to do each thing?

When you first figure out that it must be done and you have the opportunity to do it.

2. Who are the most important people to work with?
I'm not really positive but I'd say the people that you work best with, that will help you accomplish what it is you want/need to. Also right up there are people that you get along with and have fun working with, because it's not fun to be around jerks all day. Unless you yourself are a jerk or masochist and enjoy that sort of thing.

3. What is the most important thing to do at all times?
Give things to me, and ponder how one might give more things to me. Aside from that, I would say the most important thing to do is to seek God and pursue whatever it is He has for your life.

Now from Netters
1) why is brett favre so hot?? okay, i know you won't answer this so how about this: what will the score in the big game be??
58-0 Cal, having scored 4 Passing TD's, 2 Rushing TD's, 1 Defensive TD, and 1 Safety. Stanford will be pwnt.

2) what is your most embarassing moment?
I was pretty well embarrassed one time when I was riding my bike home from Jr. High. Right next to the school is an apartment complex, and everyone walks that way. I was riding my bike just in the street, and I went past the apartment driveway because there's no way a car in that driveway could/should leave - the traffic on the street was dense and they had no opening.

This did not prevent a woman behind the wheel of a family sedan from driving her car into the side of my bike. She hit my bike and I rolled off of it toward the traffic but got up. She was probably going like 5 mph. So now my bike is under her car and about a million students are looking at me. The woman continues to drive forward with my bike under her car. I tell her to stop and she does, perhaps finally coming out of her trance and joining the rest of the real world.

I got her to back up a little so I could get my heavily-damaged bike out from under her car, and amidst the jeers and shouts of my fellow students I rode away on my bike, whose handlebars I now had to hold sideways to get the bike to go straight. That was embarrassing.

3) describe your favorite dinner (more of a demand rather than a question...but you perform at my whim, SO DO IT!!)
I am not your circus monkey. However, my favorite dinner right now is the fried rice that Janelle makes me sometimes. Man it's so good. Aside from that I'd have to say the meal I had at Pappadeaux was good. I had shrimp wrapped with bacon and stuffed with cheese, on top of some dirty rice with some sort of butter sauce. This was after I downed cheesy bread with cheese fondue. So tasty.

That is all, the oracle has spoken.


of Jesus and giant hamburgers

Two things...

There's a movie coming out on 6-6-06 called "The Beast." Its purpose is to disprove Jesus as a historical person. It's the story of a high school girl who explores the evidence and realizes that Jesus was a big invention. It's a story of the courage she has to show to overcome her belief in something that clearly does not exist. I'm looking forward to seeing it. I do my best to read and analyze sources that disagree with me because I don't want to be fooling myself into believing something. That being said, as Greg Koukl has said, it's a sort of "bizarre" contention to argue that Jesus never existed considering its largely accepted by historians etc. that he was at the very least a historical person. But then again, maybe that's proof that the legend of Jesus was very well-crafted by some truly devious powermongers.

Second, Hardee's is releasing a 1400 calorie burger. Hoo-ah! I don't imagine myself eating one of those, especially considering we don' t have Hardee's here... But holy crap!


i got an idea

On my day (mostly) off here I was mindlessly trudging through the blogosphere and noticed something I wanted to do here. So here...

Anyone who reads this and cares to, ask me three questions. The number of the questioning shall be three. One, shalt thou not ask, two shalt thou not ask, unless of course you will then continue to three. Five is right out. Three questions, about whatever, be it me or my thoughts or some random fact you want me to research.

Just don't ask me why the 49ers suck so bad, cause I'll answer that for you right now: John York is a very very bad owner. There. Now you can ask me stuff.


panthers score 34 points after halftime

The 49ers looked good for the first half of the game, which I watched. I go to take a nap with a 17-3 lead. So now I hop on to check how badly the Niners beat the Panthers and find they blew up in the second half. Not the good kind of "blow up" that is sometimes used in sports, when a player goes off on a fantastic tear. No, it's the bad kind of "blow up" where they bear more resemblance to shreds and tatters than an actual team on the field. Man. Oh well, one step closer to that numero uno draft pick. But still, leaves a bad taste in my mouth.


air america

Lately I've been turning into 960 AM, aka Air America Radio. It's a self-proclaimed progressive talk radio outlet. I can't get over the garbage that's spewed on there. For example, yesterday I was listening to "Morning Sedition" and these guys were getting out of control. They said that the Bush administration was taking a cynical approach to the war by waiting to go into Fallujah until the election was over so the negative political repercussions wouldn't matter.

Are you kidding? You can't win with these people.

Before Bush was criticized for not planning well enough. He was also criticized FOR Fallujah, being saying that it was an example of how we got into something we (or rather, Bush) can't handle. So he readies the troops, plans, and execute...and now he's being political with the troops? Fallujah is a success so far, the troops are owning the Fallujah insurgents.

These people need to release their hate and get a grip on reality. Last night I listened on the way home and they were talking about a number of conspiracy theories, advancing them as very real possibilities. Like, ridiculous things.

Talk radio is dumb. Really dumb. I sometimes listen to conservative radio too, and they don't seem as dumb right now. Probably because their candidate won, so they don't sound as bitter. Overall it's like I said before - most of these people just tow the party line and talk about how stupid/evil the other side is, and it's ridiculous.

Air America radio is bad bad bad. KSFO might be too, I don't know. But I do know Air America is full of people with enormous chips on their shoulders and an intense hatred for anything that doesn't agree with them. It's pretty amusing to hear such venom and hatred for differing opinions from people who preach tolerance. The self-righteousness flying around there is astounding.

Anyway they bug me so I wanted to vent a little. You shouldn't listen to that station and take what they say seriously. They're like Rush Limbaugh, only they make sense even less.

Also I will be leaving in a couple hours for the weekend, and will be back Sunday. Hope your Veterans' Day weekends are great.


chained to ideology

One thing that I have found particularly distasteful lately in politics is the amount of demagoguery that goes on coming from "both" sides of the political scene. In America it seems to have taken the shape of "people who hate Bush" and "people who love Bush."

People take positions that are ludicrous because they are chained to their ideologies (liberal/conservative) or their political parties. Or perhaps they are just chained to the idea that they are so right and everyone else is so wrong. That's another conversation, though.

I think that people need to start having more intelligent conversations about issues and events rather than have mudslinging contests where they pretend they are intellectual and politically aware by parroting the party line from both sides. People who spew out anti-Bush or anti-war rhetoric are often just as guilty as those who condemn people who question what is going on.

The state of political discourse in this nation sucks - it's like we're living in one huge episode of Crossfire or Hannity & Colmes where you want to tell everyone to just shut up and listen to what's being said. People can't seem to form opinions based on anything but hatred of someone else based on a straw man of their beliefs or opinions. They tow the party line, bury intellectual integrity and honesty, and argue as hard as they can in order to prove the other person (1) wrong, or (2) stupid.

The end result is a political and intellectual climate where it is nearly impossible to have any sort of discussion without it degenerating into a shouting match or a fight of some sort. We need to get back to talking about issues in an honest way, and really looking at the facts and the people involved.

Demonizing people, ideas, and groups is an easy thing to do these days, and it is passing for debate when in fact it is an exercise in narcisissm. By chaining yourself to an ideology, party, or opposition to one thing or another, and by doing nothing but spewing out what the machine gives you (or the "anti-machine machine") then you do nothing to advance mankind or your own personal development. You build a fantasy land in which everyone other than those who agree with you are both simple-minded morons and evil masterminds. You become unable to hold any sort of intelligent discourse and can do nothing but bark and growl like an angry dog and do the tricks your side has taught you.

This kind of "debate" is the kind most commonly found in our nation today - and it does nothing but hurt us.



I was recently made aware of a website called myspace.com. I am apparently out of the loop. All sorts of my friends who had no interest in the intarweb are now incredibly active because of this thing. In order to better keep in touch with some of them whom I have been out of touch with for longer than I should, I put up a profile and started a my own little space there. If you're on that thing and you want to add me go ahead and check out my profile here.

In other news I want to post here more. I kinda miss it, and my audience, they need me.

I've recently been involved in a number of discussions online about things like morality and faith and politics and they have somewhat rekindled my desire to be able to post long diatribes. So maybe some of that. But anyway - you all take care now.

And I'm trying to get a new commenting system to work, so if you could let me know how that's going, I'd appreciate it. I just got some posts that were put in by Andy back in the middle of October. That does not sit well with me, so I'm using Haloscan again. Say hi and come around a little more often.


a's are done

Ricardo Rincon should have been dropped from the roster a long time ago. Man that guy has ruined so many things.

That being said...the A's as a team blew it for the past month so I can't put it all on him. But anyway...no postseason for my beloved A's. Man, so close.

I would have really liked there to be a meaningful game tomorrow. Oh well. At least Cal whuptated the opposition.


small groups

Last night we started small groups for the youth ministry. Janelle started a girls group in our home and I have a guys' group meeting in the youth room on church campus. This time I think the groups just may stick. Janelle is great at creating the atmosphere necessary for a group to flourish and I think the girls took well to it. Especially with Marce's cookies. I'm glad they had some left when I showed up.

I enjoyed the group time with the guys - I know it will take longer for the guys to open up and all that stuff, but it's all good.

I have been antsy and restless the past week or so. I met with Michael yesterday for accountability and he encouraged me. I haven't been spending enough (or even much at all) time with God for the past couple weeks and it really took a toll on me. I didn't even realize it and then it caught up with me Sunday night. Sometimes it's so easy to just go and go and not even thinking about what you're going for. Anyway I feel my "problem" has been diagnosed and I am about the business of getting back on track.

The coolness of having a wireless keyboard and mouse still has not worn off. Just thought I'd share that.


logitech cordless mx

Yesterday was my birthday and my incredible wife threw me a part at my Dad's place. Many people showed up, it was fun and it felt good to be surrounded by family and friends. It was my first b-day as a married man and with my in-laws, so the family portion was much larger than usual. T'was a pleasure though.

Because of the number of people I was unable to hang out with everyone as much as I might have wanted to, but that's the way things go. I got a lot of good presents - one that I am pretty excited about is the cordless keyboard and mouse I got from Janelle's fam (which is now my fam). Perhaps the coolest thing about the mouse is that it has a button to switch between different programs, which is cool. There's also a little control panel for it that lets you know how the batteries are doing. Anyway I am very stoked about these new devices and now typing on my desktop is almost as cool as typing on my laptop.

Very busy weekend upcoming.

I was talking with a few students in class this week, and one of them said to me "did you know that if Bush wins the election he will institute the draft and you won't be able to get out of it unless you're under 18?" Where do people get these ideas? Man. This election is one of the dumbest in my memory - everyone is just interested in slandering the other side and no real ideas are debated or expressed.

I am personally pro-Bush because Kerry is (1) wholly uninspiring, (2) seems to lack confidence in his convictions, and (3) I disagree with him on some important issues.

It's my perception/opinion that the President can't control a whole lot. They aren't the ones making laws, etc. Now they do give their party a degree of influence and all that, and they do wield power - but at the same time more often than not I am going to vote for who I perceive as the stronger leader most of the time.

Anyway my opinions on this are not fully thought out - but I wanted to type more on my nifty new keyboard. Peace out.


the substitute

Washington High had a new teacher start on September 3rd - he quit less than a week later. Said the job was "too stressful." Some kids in his 5th period class said "he called us the f-word. Two times." It's really too bad this guy didn't figure out a little sooner that teaching wasn't his bag.

I am subbing his classes until the school is able to hire someone else. I am sort of BSing my way through it. I have 2 US History classes and 3 Geography classes. I spent today trying to figure out how I'm going to teach these kids for the time I'm there. I don't want it all to be a waste of time for them. So I'm spending some time figuring that out.

It's unfortunate that this very week is the one I usually spend most of my oneeighty prep time on - and I am having to spend a lot of time prepping for classes and stuff. Usually subbing complements my ministry job quite well because it affords me time to sit and relax and work. Not so with this assignment. I actually have to earn my money this time. Oh well.


roll on you bears

I would just like to say that I've been a Cal fan for about five years now, so I lived through some of the crappy years, including the 1-win year (and that 1 win against Rutgers of all schools) in 2002. This gives me the right to make statements such as "Go Cal!" or "We won!" Yes, I am sort of bragging about my fandom regarding the Cal Bears. Because there's something satisfying about being a fan of a crappy team and then having them do well. In fact having them blow out two teams in as many weeks, that's celebration material. So the ebb and flow of your team's power is something you can sort of proudly claim as time goes by. The Bears are most certainly flowing right now.

The 49ers, on the other hand, continue to ebb with no relief in sight. Oh well.

And at least the A's stopped their skid.

September is a real good time to be a sports fan.

On another subject, I have lately been doing this more often when presented with a situation or decision: "What would someone smarter/more responsible/better at leading do?" This has led to a general increase in my optimism regarding the future and the present. I suggest you do this, if you haven't already tried it. It really is neat. It sometimes even works.

Got to see my sister and her fam today, attended my nephew's first soccer game of the year. There were a lot of families around with their kids playing soccer on a bunch of different fields. My sister said that there were somewhere around 2500 kids that played soccer in Folsom alone. I had no idea it was so big. I wonder if I was peering about 10 years into my future while I sat there watching Austin play. Scary thought. Also, my niece, who I remember holding as a little baby, is now wearing makeup. I was not prepared for such developments. Now I wouldn't want her to read this and be traumatized - so I don't mean she shouldn't be wearing it.

Not that I'm saying she needs it.

Um, Ashley, if you read this - just e-mail me and I can explain what I mean.

That's all for now.


men in hats

I've discovered a pretty funny new webcomic. Discovered for me...I'm sure plenty of others knew about it. But anyway, check it out, link above. As a bonus there's an annoying Christian on it.

this could be dangerous

It's truly a sad day when I'm afraid for Star Wars movies to come out. Hopefully Episode 3 will make up for the previous two movies...though I don't see much of a chance of that. At least the original trilogy will be released on DVD soon. Right around my birthday...

Paid another visit to the dentist yesterday...this one was slightly more painful than the last. Dr. Sutedja got me a little worried when he said "we'll do the less complicated one first." The complicated one required a few different tools to properly grind and drill...I didn't know there were so many different ways to destroy a tooth. Even though Herr Doktorr's tools hurt, I would've appreciated a needle to the gums left. And joking aside, Doctor Sutedja rocks, he's really a nice guy and if you live in the area and lack a dentist...you should check him out. He's really sensitive to the fact that he's holding sharp things in your mouth.


pink dinosaur in NZ volcano

Roffle. Some guy snuck up to a webcam scientists use and put up a little Dino. Good stuff.


modern technology

Today I had the first 3 cavities filled that I've ever had filled in my life. I entered the office with my heart beating a little faster than normal; I was hoping I wouldn't need a shot in the gums or anything like that. The dental assistant ushered me into the back room after I paid my copay, and I sat in the big chair staring at the wall as I waited. Directly in front of me was a poster with a huge picture of a tropical beach, and it said RELAX in really big letters. I did my best to take it to heart.

As it turns out my dentist is some sort of superhero, because he drilled around the cavities without me needing a shot. And we live in a wonderland of technology, because he put the filling in and then used this little zapping device that provided the energy necessary for the endothermic reaction that would harden the filling and allow me to leave there with a minimum of trauma to my mouth. So that was pretty cool.

Obviously I didn't post anything about the leadership summit - this past weekend was crazy busy. I am inspired, however, to step up my leadership and really put my nose to the grindstone and extend myself and try to build people up like I haven't before. We'll see how that goes.


off to see the wizard

Today is the first day of the Leadership Summit. There are 50 people from Crossroads going. That's a lot. Perhaps our yells from the balcony will warrant more attention now, and our presence in the beachball throwing will be more fearsome.

I learned that Blogger has their own commenting system now. That makes things much much easier.

I am thinking that I might post my thoughts on each day of the summit and the speakers, what they had to say that stuck with me and all that. That may or may not happen, but it seems like a good idea so I'll try.


time for a change

I'm in the midst of a busy day, I am trying to compose my message on the DaVinci Code for Crossroads this weekend, the worship gathering for oneeighty this weekend, among other things. Thurs-Sat I will be at the Willow Creek Leadership Summit satellite in Walnut Creek. Last year I met my wife there. I don't imagine I will have such a great experience this time...but she will be present with me Friday and Saturday, so that's cool.

Anyway, I will be fixing/adding links and stuff to this new template as time allows. I just wanted to take a short break and change things up a little here.



i knew it

Some people were heralding Ricky Williams as some kind of "stick it to the man" kind of guy who had these great values because he was willing to give money up to pursue his dreams. Apparently his dreams involve smoking lots of hashish. That's too bad.


two posts, can you believe it

Didn't plan on posting again but I saw this over at jordon cooper's site and felt like reposting it.
Chapter & Verse
from the "The West Wing" created by Aaron Sorkin

President Bartlet (Martin Sheen): I like how you call homosexuality an abombination.

Jenna Jacobs: I don't say homosexuality is an abomination, Mr. President, the Bible does.

President Bartlet: Yes, it does. Leviticus.Jenna Jacobs: 18:22.

President Bartlet: Chapter and verse. I wanted to ask you a couple of questions while I have you here. I'm interested in selling my youngest daughter into slavery as sanctioned in Exodus 21:7. She's a Georgetown sophmore, speaks fluent Italian, always cleared the table when it was her turn. What would a good price for her be? While thinking about that, can I ask another? My Chief of Staff Leo McGarry insists on working on the Sabbath. Exodus 35:2 clearly says he should be put to death. Am I morally obligated to kill him myself or is it okay to call the police? Here's one that's really important because we've got a lot of sports fans in this town: touching the skin of a dead pig makes one unclean. Leviticus 11:7. If they promise to wear gloves, can the Washington Redskins still play football? Can Notre Dame? Can West Point? Does the whole town really have to be together to stone my brother John for planting different crops side by side? Can I burn my mother in a small family gathering for wearing garments made from two different threads? "Think about that, will you?


Okay so that there is a quote from the West Wing.  I think it's clear that Christ-followers have a lot to do when it comes to clearing up misconceptions about what scripture says and means.  Although it's probably the fault of many purported Christ-followers that people don't understand the Biblical position on homosexuality.  It's about love, not judgment, and not about burning people.  Sadly though, I think too often judgment and not love is what has been communicated.  Witness the fruit of such actions. 
married life is neato

Being married agrees with me.  Janelle has to wake up early to go to work, and I wake up early with her.  Alarm clocks are mercilessly indiscriminate in their noisemaking.  I think my favorite thing in the morning is when the two of us have breakfast and quiet times together.  There's nothing quite like sitting in a room with your wife, with the two of you reading the Bible, praying, journaling, and connecting with God.  I sit there and just know we're starting the day right.  Getting up early also helps give me a start on the work I need to do for the day.  I dig it, I dig being married, I am so completely and totally blessed.

I am still trying to get regular POP access on this desktop - I recently upgraded my mobo/cpu/ram, and therefore jumped up to windows xp, and I don't have MS Office yet.  I am trying to use Thunderbird but I'm not really sure how I feel about it.

Here's an editorial on the separation of church and state, and some comments by Richard Reich, who is becoming more annoying to me every time I read something of his.  I remember seeing him on O'Reilly a while ago and he didn't seem too bad, but his statements as quoted here are frustrating.  It's always nice when someone says you have no respect for logic if you have faith.


here we go

Okay, it's 7:15 or so on my wedding day. In two hours, a limo will be at my house picking me up to take me to my wedding. In a little over five hours I will be standing up there at the altar waiting for Janelle to come up. And in six hours I will be a married man. It's pretty exciting stuff. I likely won't be here for a while, not that I post regularly right now anyway...but I should be gone about a week. Take care, y'all.


HoustonChronicle.com - Robbers kill man who wanted empty wallet back

This guy was apparently a friend of one of my buds from the 42nd. Man that is messed up. Can't imagine that happening to someone I know. And what kind of person shoots someone else for something like that? Times like this it's harder to be anti-death penalty.



Power's back on at our house. Always pay your bills on time, folks! I am running around doing stuff, trying to ger ready for that thing called marriage. Getting my last haircut as a single guy in a few minutes. That's kinda neat.

Also, I've put it off as long as possible, but today I am going to be moving my desktop computer from this internet-equipped house (when there's actually electricity) to the woefully isolated apartment. Cable and internet will be hooked up on July 16th at the new place. Until then it's just me, my trusty laptop, and any unsecured wifi networks I can tap into.

I remember putting this computer desk together, thinking "I wonder if I will ever be able to get it through the doorway. Well, today I get to find out.

Take it easy y'all!


how to appear smarter

it's actually pretty funny
ESPN.com - GEN - Ralph Wiley, an original Page 2 columnist, dies

I didn't really know Wiley or his work much, I do remember reading some of it. But it's just kinda weird, it struck me as I was reading the article. It sort of sums up Wiley's life, and at the end talks about how his heart just gave out, unexpectedly while he was watching the NBA Finals.

This kind of thing is a reminder of how fleeting life is - but no matter how many reminders I get, I always wonder if I'm really living as if tomorrow is not guaranteed. This is a particularly unhappy prospect, considering I am planning on getting married in less than a month, and I want to have a long life with my wife.

I mean, since I believe that upon death I'll be with God, I suppose I shouldn't mind since that would be, like, better than anything on earth. But I still don't like the idea, you know?



I just received the big "whatever" from a student. She just returned from being gone from the classroom for like 20 minutes, and when I denied her request to go out again to get something from her car she was very put out. Kids are funny sometimes.

I'm subbing right now and managed to find a classroom where I could hook my laptop up to the internet. Apparently you don't need to have the networking software installed on your computer to get access to the net from the school's network. Just plugged in the blue wire and here I go. So this is pretty sweet. Finals start next week, so today all I'm doing is sitting here while kids talk and sign yearbooks. It's a pleasure, I tell you.

I have not been posting much because I am insanely busy. I'm getting married in (roughly) 29 days and as such have been running around trying to make sure different bases are covered, for both the youth ministry and oneeighty. I'm very thankful to have different people in place covering stuff and doing the ministry while I'm not around.

Oh yeah, in other news, the A's rule.



I don't have anything to say. I just wanted to see the Blogger interface again and type into it. So, uh. The Sharks really bit tonight, and the Kings royally screwed up. The Giants were belittled by the Cubs...the A's are the only team that may salvage today.

There, I said something. Wheeeee Blogger.
I haven't been on the Blogger website for a while...they changed it. I even have a profile now, that's kinda cool. Makes it a little more like LJ but that's okay.

Anyway not a lot of time to mess around right now. I'm trying to prepare for the camping trip this weekend. We're going to Sunset State Beach, south of Santa Cruz. Should be fun. I just gotta try to make sure it's meaningful, now...


Being physically fit is a part of ministry according to this author. I do agree that we should take care of our bodies, etc. But something about using the story of Philip and the eunuch bothers and annoys me.
sports world is upside down

So my A's can't even steal a game and the 49ers are ranked 31st in ESPN's offseason power rankings. But the underachieving Sharks are overachieving, reaching the West Finals for the first time. And then Cal is ranked 12th in ESPN's College Football rankings? 12th? Am I hallucinating?

I just want the A's to win one stinkin game against the Yankees. Is that too much to ask? Okay...I actually want them to sweep the Yankees, but come on...


mosquitos can all burn in the fiery depths of hell

That may sound a little harsh. But let's all realize what time it is. It's now 6:02am on a Sunday morning. A Sunday in which I will be very busy until I drive down to Santa Barbara after youth group, which ends around 9 or 9:30. Why am I up at this time? I have been the victim of the single most bloodthirsty mosquito God ever cursed the earth with.

I'm not sure when I first woke up last night...but I woke up itching my right arm, about halfway between the shoulder and elbow. This in and of itself was not alarming to me. After a short while I was back asleep.

A small buzzing near my ear woke me up an indeterminate amount of time later. I think it was sometime around 3am. It was at that point I realized I was not alone in my room and that itching on my arm had developed into a bump. I swatted at the empty air a bit in a desperate, delerious attempt to kill my would-be attacker, but to no avail. I wasn't sure what kind of bug was in my room; I didn't recognize the distinctive buzzing of a mosquito and thought surely it must be some other form of small insect. Due to the hour I figured I would just go to sleep and it would go away. In order to gain some sort of protection, I wrapped myself up in my blanket as tightly as I could, exposing only my head. My head has ears, you see, which would theoretically warn me of the creature's approach, so I figured I would be safe. Such is my thought process in a mostly-sleeping state.

Alas, the vermin I was cursed with was no mere gnat. It was a mosquito. A mosquito of the most vicious kind.

I woke again later, this time with a terrible itching on the inside of my foot. It seems my sleeping self had very little interest in protection from this ravaging insect. I was annoyed, and realized the bloodsucker had paid another visit to my right arm. Frustrated, I scratched at my foot. But I wasn't sure what to do. It was 4am. It was dark. It was a freakin' mosquito.

Surely the beast drank its fill, I think to myself. There's no way it would keep sucking my blood. It's gotta be full. With that I determined I would go back to sleep and make sure I got enough rest for my busy day. I scratched a thousand psychosomatic itches and allowed myself to sleep.

It seems, however, that the vile thing had not finished its feast most foul...its feast of blood. Upon waking I immediately realized I'd caught it on my left wrist; it fled when I shook my hand and uttered an incoherent but umistakably angry "Augh!" I am not convinced that this bug wasn't trying to open my wrists up so it could bathe in a river of blood. It had found a target that wouldn't move and was probably beside itself with excitement. Realizing its window may be short, my nemesis must have resolved to kill me as I slept. Unfortunately for the mosquito, that would be the last time it sucked the life out of anyone's veins.

After realizing this bug would not rest until my spirit was loosed from my body I decided I had to get up. Sure it was 5:45am and sure I had a long day...but if I'm not careful I may end up a dried up husk by the time I really want to get up. So I got up, turned on my light, and looked around for my adversary. It was nowhere to be found. Rather than spend my time in a fruitless search for vengeance, I decided to be the bigger man and vent about the experience on my blog.

No doubt delerious from the massive intake of blood it had received all night, the mosquito went for one last run at me. In a wakened and angry state, however, that mosquito soon learned it would be unable to draw any more sweet sweet blood from this victim. This final attempt on my life made me realize this was one foe that would not be satisfied until I lay still and lifeless; as such, I knew I must do most righteous battle with it.

I stood with my back to the door of my room and surveyed the situation. I calmly searched the room for my antagonist. Eventually I saw it, bloated and evil, on the wall between my room and Jesse's. Doubtless it could sense the presence of another life through those walls and was planning its next victim. Never had it been more obvious that I must vanquish this vulgar affront to all of creation. Clearly it was some ancient god come to life, beginning its return to unholy power and depravity right here in Fremont. Thankfully for all of mankind, I was up to the task; grasping my Rainbow Sandal, which shone like Excalibur in my hand, I strode forward to embrace my destiny.

Swollen as it was with my blood, the olde god dodged my clumsy attack. There was a loud crack as the sandal hit the wall; my roommates may have been disturbed, but surely they would understand. I was saving their lives. Nay, saving the very planet from this marauding villain. I soon realized that the sandal made an inadequate weapon and searched for another suitable implement of destruction. I felt my hand guided to a paper on my desk - it was from a Bible Study Jesse had led on the Holy Spirit. As I lifted and unfolded the paper like some holy parchment, my enemy alighted on the wall in front of me. Now was the time to strike.

My approach was slow, but the killing blow came faster than even this abomination of desolation could have anticipated. I pulled the page from the wall and saw my blood there. Colorful and red and alive - the blackness of the fiend's soul had not yet fully contaminated it. As I stared at the body of this once mighty death-monger, I was filled with a mix of disgust and respect; it had secured many times its body weight in my own lifeblood. I breathed a sigh of relief and sat in my chair, free from the glutton's tyranny.

And now, in a world liberated from one more danger, I sit here and share my tale with you. Perhaps I should have warned at the outset it was not for the faint of heart. But what has been written has been written, and sometimes an exposure to the truly horrific things in life can grow a person. It is my hope that rather than being traumatized by my harrowing experience, you are invigorated and emboldened to continue the fight against the menace that threatens to consume us all. The mosquito.

[picture removed because it's kinda gross]

It's a dark world we live in people. We must be ever vigilant.


roleplaying games are the devil

Observe, incontrovertible proof that RPG's influence kids to worship Satan. This really is an accurate portrayal of many a gaming session I've been a part of. Ahh, memories...


must resist urge to flame

I used to do a lot of arguing/discussing online. I did this with atheists and agnostics mostly, trying to convince them that Christianity isn't a load of crap. I would also argue about other less important things, from politics to evolution and what have you. One thing about arguing online is that you are bascially typing into a machine - you're not looking anybody in the face. As such it is easier to be a punk to them, to be a bit colder and to express your frustration with their inability to make a point.

I posted a question on a forum asking for the input of others on birth control methods. This forum is one primarily for those in youth ministry, so most of the people there are Christian. There are a wide range of beliefs held by the people on the forums, so there's still interesting discussion. I would suppose some of the most annoying arguments you can have are with a bunch of people who all think they know what God says about some particular thing.

Anyway if you want to see me get argumentative online, see this thread. I am doing my best to be civil, but it is difficult. I have to try hard to not become a flame warrior. Sometimes I feel like I'm beating my head against a wall. I know it's a long thread so you don't have to look through it obviously, or you could just find my posts.

I suppose my point is this - it can be really frustrating to have someone tell you that what you're doing is against God's will but not provide you with any reasoning for it. It's frustrating because I get this sense that they feel superior or wiser than me, like they have some sort of inside track on God. I would give them the benefit of the doubt and guess that these people are honestly trying to follow Christ and don't think in their heads that they are better or wiser than me. But from this side it sure seems like it. I wonder if I ever come off that way, despite my best intentions, when I am sharing Christ or His message with others. Something to think about.


it's just not the same without a laptop

For some reason I vastly prefer updating this when I'm on my laptop. There's something about the clicking of that particular keyboard that makes typing satisfying. The keyboard for my desktop is some dusty dinosaur I've had forever. This thing has been hooked up to many a machine. Oh well, here I am anyway. If the keyboard had feelings it might feel special. Or resentful.

80 days till I am married. It's comin' up fast. I'm excited for it to happen - I'm also excited to see how God will be providing financially for Janelle and I. If you know of any good/clean places in the Fremont area let me know. Same with any good jobs - Janelle is looking. I'm working as much as I can in the subbing business before school lets out. We'll see what happens. The bottom line is I'm excited to be marrying the woman of my dreams and embarking on this next part of my life with her.

Because I use blogger I was invited to test out the new gmail thing that Google is releasing. I'm not sure how I feel about an e-mail system that looks for keywords in your mail and spams you based on them...but I figure it can't hurt to at least mess with it. If you want to e-mail my gmail account, you can send a note to jperdue@gmail.com. Just putting that out there has thrown the e-mail address into the dark scary world of internet spiders and whatnot. We'll see just how good they are at filtering spam.


i always thought they did grooming there

""Petco Park might be the place where homers go to die, but PETCO stores are where animals go to die." - Dan Shannon, PETA. From this article.


meant to post this a while ago

Sometimes when I'm around my computer but not the internet I write posts in notepad that I intend on putting up here. I found one today, I wrote it sometime in February or March. So anyway, I figured I went through the work of typing it then so I'd put it up...

This morning during my first period prep I turned on the TV to kill some time and see what was on. I found two or three "Christian" shows on, none of which were giving out sound Biblical teaching. One was getting me really mad, trying to get people to make "vows" where they'd give money to the guy. The dude would sit there and read stuff out of his Bible, and say "The Lord is shun baba yama hala lama the anointing is strong here, bablala someone here is going to tap into this power, I know it" etc etc. He was like a stinkin psychic friend but he had a Bible open in front of him and was using Jesus' name all the time. Grrrr.

One of the other things I saw was an infomercial wherein two midget twin brothers were espousing the wonders of real estate and how they can get you rich quick.

Man, morning TV is a wasteland! More arguments for video games. Or going outside, whatever.


i will live a simple life

I'm back from my trip down to SoCal. LA was interesting - the part we stayed in appeared to be some sort of Korea Town. I went into a Korean market and was interested to find two things. One - there were flatpanel LCD displays hanging from the ceilings with news and whatnot in an otherwise dingy store. Two - there was an "American Food" aisle with things like Frosted Flakes and microwave pizzas and Pop Tarts. On Saturday morning the store had a traffic director with a whistle who tried to manage the large volume of cars entering and exiting the relatively small parking lot. Across the street were a number of Korean protestors holding signs and shouting with a megaphone. I hear they've been protesting there for over a year about working conditions or something...I guess I admire their dedication. I'd just go get a job somewhere else.

My time with Janelle's family was good. I enjoy spending time with them, and feel welcomed and like I belong. I'm glad that the steretype of "the hated inlaws" will not be true in my life.

This week will likely be busy, what with oneeighty preparations and catching up with what I left behind in going to LA.


byrnes rules

Went to the A's season opener last night with some friends. Man that was a good time, especially with Byrnes' 2-run pinch hit in the bottom of the 8th. The A's sure do win in style.

Lineage 2 is now in open beta and the characters are sticking around into retail. Any of my recreational computer time is spent there, trying to keep up with my more hardcore buddies. It is a pretty fun game...but without the other guys to play it with it'd get boring before too long, I know it.

I've had a sore throat for the past few days...I'm hoping it doesn't turn into anything.

Thursday evening I'm leaving with the Cornelio family to attend a funeral in Southern California, will be gone for the Easter weekend. I will miss my Crossroads family on this weekend - will be the first Easter I wasn't there since 1996 I think. But I will be spending it with my future in-laws. Anyway just thought I'd share that. I have been pretty quiet lately. Blame Lineage for sucking up my computer time.


all hail west virginia

Their Governor has been angered. I bet if Ahnold made such a request that guy would've bowed down and begged forgiveness.


you must play this game

Play it! And make sure you read the strategy guide too, even if you beat it. This is gold.
cry me a river

The distance between Fremont, CA and Melbourne, Australia is 7,884 miles according to Jeeves. That's really far.



Holy crap. Watch this trailer. If anyone speaks Japanese and can give me a hint as to what these people are saying, I'd appreciate it. I must find a way to see this movie.


in the airport

I'm at the Ft. Lauderdale airport right now and I managed to hook up to a hotspot. That's a pleasure, considering we arrived over 2 hours before our flight is scheduled to depart. I was able to spend the last hour plus catching up on my e-mail and various web stuff that I usually like to keep track of. Good stuff.

There are some things I meant to post before I left but never got around to doing, so I'm going to post those. I'm going to mess with the date so they show up when I meant them to post.

My trip to the Florida Keys was great, though I am looking forward to being home. I get to see Janelle tonight for the first time in over 20 days, so there is even more motivation for all this travel to be over. I had a lot of fun with everybody, both the Chicagoans and Teddy who lives close but I don't see enough. In a week or two I'll be putting up some pictures and whatnot. So yeah, off to post that old stuff.


off i went

I'm going out of town tomorrow. Headed to the Florida Keys with some friends from here and Chicago. Definitely looking forward to some relaxing time with good friends. I'm disappointed some people can't make it but know that it'll be fun anyway. It will feel like a vacation too, because I've been in that metalshop class for so long. Gonna hit the ground running when I come back home too. I'm going to take my digital camera and hope it decides to work.

I doubt I'll have internet access at all on my trip - I'll be gone till Sunday. Be good now.
observations from school

I talked this morning with a man named Greg, who works as a facilities guy around Washington High School. He's a big blue-collar guy, works hard and seems like a man just doing his best to provide for his family and his kids and all that. He saw that I was reading my Bible and we started up a conversation about that. It turns out that he used to be studying to be a minister way back in the day, but something happened in the family that distracted him and his wife wanted the whole family to go to a Catholic church together. So now he said he gave up on that minister thing and converted to Catholicism, and he's doing that with his family. It looked to me like he felt that was his real calling or something but he couldn't do it because of what happened. Like maybe, he said, the devil realized he was going to be a good minister and did something to mess that up.

Then he started talking to me about how he teaches catechism to 4th grader's at St. Edward's, a parish in town. It was hilarious watching this manly man start to talk about a 4th grader named Mikaila that was frustrating him because she was starting to, as he said "develop. You know, get her 'girly parts' I guess you could say." I could tell he was uncomfortable just talking about it. I didn't know people actually said "girly parts."

Anyway I just wanted to share that, I don't have any special kind of lesson or anything from him. I just think it's interesting how people can have stories in them you totally didn't expect. And I feel like I almost ran into a sitcom character. Good hard-working guy, doing his best to be an upstanding Catholic family-man but real and honest at the same time, masculine and has difficulty talking about "girly parts" and all that. And then there's the twist of maybe he was meant to be something different. Maybe he was meant to be a church pastor instead of a facilities guy at Washington High School. Or maybe he could have been. Just thinking out loud.


Added a few links to the "other blogs" section over there on the left. I can't keep up with all of these guys at the same time, but there's usually something good to read among them. If you only check out one see Rudy Carrasco's site and if you check two from the new ones check Rudy's and liquidthinking.
more on the passion

Here are some comments from Doug Pagitt that I identified with to some degree. For the entire entry go here:

A few theological comments. I am glad to see theological comments being made in movies and am not intending to say the movie-makers should do anything else. The place my theology departs from the movie is in the amount of suffering before the crucifixion. The beatings were so severe and in my opinion an over-stretching for what probably happened. (I don’t think any human body could take the kind of beating the movie showed and not loose consciousness, let alone stand). But the real issue was the disproportionate amount of beating in comparison to the crucifixion. From what is in the bible it is unclear how long the beatings took, but less than 3 hours is a reasonable assumption. The time of Jesus on the Cross was probably about 3 hours. But the movie placed most of the time on beating and the cross was almost a brief relief from the scourging. I found myself saying, “just get him to the cross”. I wanted the pain to stop. That is where I find trouble with the beatings focused sacrifice. If our thought of the sacrifice of Jesus was what he took in the beating, and not the loosing of his life we end up with different story. We could end up with a story that says we will suffer in this life and this body, but we will escape that suffering through death. It makes death the freedom (almost Brave Heart like. Interesting). I felt this in the movie. When Jesus cried “It is accomplished” I found myself feeling,” good it is over”. Death as relief?!
But the story of Jesus is not that death is relief from pain, rather that resurrection is the relief from death. I am not saying Mel Gibson tried to do this, but I think many people will conclude that the embraced cross was a good thing. It is the resurrection that the good thing.


Ah crap. Well I wish him luck wherever he goes. Garcia seems like a good guy, DUI notwithstanding. Heh. Probably be vultured by the Raiders or something.


hangin with mr cooper

Jordon Cooper is a Christ-loving Canadian blogger, and most people in the Christian blogosphere know who he is. He's sort of the obligatory person on your blogroll. Anyway, he wrote a very thoughtful post about community and space and all those good things. I haven't had time to think too much about it but I wanted to share it with any of you that came across my site, because he clearly put a lot of work into it and I'd hate to see that go to waste. And maybe you could benefit from reading it. I may comment more on it later, when I'm not at school looking at an 8" monitor. Blah.

I am able to spend a little time here in the teacher's lounge before school starts to peruse stuff on the web. I am actually digging the beginning of my day because I have 1st period prep. This allows me to chill a little bit in front of the computer, go into the classroom and spend some time with God, and then jump into a day of babysitting.

This morning I was chatting with Jesse and he said "I think i get to sand hardwood floors for six hours today." I then asked him to tell me what he's going to do each workday before I head off to school. I think this will help my morale. So will my trip to Florida next week. Huzzah!


the passion continued

WARNING: Spoilers. If you haven't seen the movie and are worried about having parts of it spoiled for you don't read any more of this.

So I promised I would share some of the things about The Passion that concerned me or gave me pause. Actually, I don't think I promised that but it's what I'm giving anyway.

The movie focused on Christ's crucifixion - from the time He was praying in the Garden of Gethsemane through his death on the cross. At the very end you see a resurrected Jesus walk out of the tomb with a smile on His face. Other than that, it is pretty much non-stop violence against Jesus. There are flashbacks like I mentioned to give you a break from the blood, but these flashbacks don't actually do much to explain the WHY of everything you're seeing. And therein lies my biggest concern with the film.

As a Christian, someone who claims to be a follower and disciple of Christ - I have a familiarity with this story and its context. I understand that Jesus was dying for ME, and every other person throughout history. I know that His death was necessary for my salvation - without Him making the sacrifice the film portrayed I would be hopeless in life and through eternity. I understand that "the wages of sin is death" and I love Christ. I understand the character of God to the point where I am able to realize this isn't just a sadistic exercise of His but rather the necessary path for the redemption of humanity.

I wonder, though, what someone with no such Christian context would think of the film. I imagine the response might be something along the lines of "Wow that Jesus went through a lot. He was a great guy and suffered much." Connecting that suffering with themselves, or a sacrifice meant to save them - I'm not sure that would happen without an explanation. And assuming the person knew the basics - that Jesus is supposed to have died for the sake of others, and the forgiveness of our sins. Does that person look at the brutality unleashed on Jesus and say "What the crap? He seems like a loving guy, but what God would put him through that?"

So I'm not sure that the character of God is communicated very clearly here - that God is loving and forgiving. That each lash on Jesus was indeed a stripe on the back of God Himself. That they are watching God in the flesh suffer for them. For me it's a picture of sacrificial love, but for someone else it might just be a picture of suffering and wrath and blood.

I think that this movie will be best for those that already have a faith in Christ or who have "backslidden" in their faith. People who have a glimmer of a background - they remember hearing that Jesus died for them, and maybe at one point in their life even it was real. But now life has gotten in the way and clouded their vision of Christ and His sacrifice. This film will pierce through the fog of everday busy and cut straight to the heart or a person of faith. But for those without faith, or any real conception of God or why this happened - I fear it might confuse, disturb, or at the worst drive them away.

But I don't know. I'd be interested in hearing your opinions on the movie, and how your spiritual background played into it.


Okay so I saw the movie. I won't go into super-depth with reflections and whatnot, be all organized. Instead I'm just going to share a few of my thoughts. I hestitate to say I "enjoyed" the movie. How could I enjoy watching someone suffer for my sins? So instead maybe I should say I was touched by the film. I was touched by the degree of suffering Jesus endured; how he was treated with such contempt, hatred, and violence. I think the parts that made me tear up were actually the non-violent parts though, because they made the violence all the more horrifying.

As I mentioned before I have seen many people beaten up on screen, and I've seen Jim Caviezel in other movies (Count of Monte Cristo, Frequency) so I had to have something else to suspend my disbelief for the film. The way the film is structured, it starts with Jesus being betrayed and taken away for his trials and crucifixion. Interspersed throughout the movie, presumably (and thankfully) to give you breaks from the violence, are flashbacks that give you some kind of frame of reference. Two flashbacks in particular touched me.

The first was with Jesus making a table outside of his house, with his mother Mary inside watching him. He was a grown-up, and full of life. He had a glimmer in his eyes as he worked, and he was brimming with vitality. His mother came out to let him know there was food inside; at first he just keeps on working on the table till he's satisfied that it's finished. It's a tall table so he jokes with her about who will eat at it - then she convinces him to come inside, and just like a mother and a son tells him to "wash his hand" before coming in. The mischevious annoyance with that request is clear in Jesus' eyes and I see Him portrayed here as a more alive person than I ever have. He doesn't somberly say in an English accent "Yea verily mother, I shall come into the house and eat of the porridge you have so graciously prepared for me." No, He has personality! And I was touched with his humanity - especially when the camera cut back from this vital man's smiling face to an eye swollen shut and face bloodied from many blows.

The second flashback that really got me occurred later in the story. Jesus is carrying His cross after having been tortured incredibly - He is weak and faltering. His mother Mary has been following along, and at one point He falls to His knees under the weight of the cross. She is there and sees Him fall - as that happens we are taken to a flashback. We see a child of 5 or 6 running - he falls and skins a knee. We see Mary run to the child and say "it's okay, I'm here, I'm here." Then we flash back to this same mother, years later; the child is grown and He now is bloody all over, more than a knee is skinned. That flashback gave me such a picture of Jesus as a man that I haven't seen before, and it got me good.

So as I watched the movie I was overcome with a sense of unworthiness and thankfulness. I am so thankful to God and Christ for my salvation. I am so not worthy.

I will continue tomorrow with some of my concerns about the film. For now, it's time to make a phone call and head to bed.
the passion

I'm going to the The Passion in a few minutes with my Mom. I am looking forward to seeing it for a couple reasons. Mainly I am looking forward to it because I think that I sometimes forget the suffering Christ went through on my behalf and I hear this movie leaves little room for such things. I am a little afraid of being desensitized to the violence. I have seen people beaten up on camera many times - I wonder if that will affect how I see Jesus portrayed in the film. I also hear from O'Reilly that the violence may become numbing.

Anyway we'll see. Check this out for a little alternate Christian view on the film. A guy that's not very excited about it. We'll see and I'll dump my thoughts on it later. For now I have to split.


Changed the above title bars. No more gangsta Jackson. Instead there should be some smooshed pics of outside and whatnot.
Okay okay, what?! Can that be real?

EDIT: Jesse has informed me that he doesn't care. He's dumb. Anyone with half a brain thinks a 3-year old playing a xylophone rules. Err...anyone with a whole brain thinks they're cool...everyone with less than that...thinks...they're...um...yeah...

So this picture was on the front of Yahoo today...

She looks a little intense and scary.

Just wanted to share that.


I've said many times that I like substitute teaching. And I do, I really do love the job. Sometimes, though, it's less enjoyable than other times. I mentioned before that I'm currently in the midst of a long-term job that will last me until at least March 5th. This is good because every day I'm working I'm making money. This is not good because I have nothing for the students to do. The normal teacher has been out since December and it's woodshop/metalshop/home maintenance. They're supposed to build things - things that they must use tools to construct. In order for them to use such tools, there must be an adult present that possesses certain certifications - certifications I lack. The result? Nothing for them to do. I was able to give them a few book assignments and we may watch some videos next week - but I am basically here all day with kids who are bored out of their minds having to enforce rules I only half-heartedly agree with. I don't blame some of them for being bored and I don't blame them completely for how they react sometimes - I'd want to mess around with wood and vice grips too - but it's my job to tell them not to when they do. And I've got some kind of head cold.

I just feel like complaining. There are worse ways to make money. Just ask Jesse. I'm far too much of a wuss to do the kind of work he does. So I should just keep my trap shut and appreciate what I have.


clear that throat

It's been a few days, pardon my inactivity here. I landed a 'steady' assignment for a few weeks at Washington High, my alma mater. I am subbing for the Metalshop/Woodshop teacher, spending all day with the kinds of kids I avoided like the plague in high school. I can even look at them now and see the different kids I know I would have stayed away from. Kinda funny...their powers are now useless against me.

This steady work is good because it means I'm pulling in the benjamins but there is a bit of annoyance at the fact that I have to be up around 6 every morning - this affects my bedtime. I am actually tired and wanting to head to bed around 10 these nights. Yikes. I do feel productive though; each day work is over by 2:30pm.

I suppose I just wanted to throw a post of no particular content up because it's 1st Period, I don't have a class, and I'm on a Mac that can't handle the the 42nd's forums.

There's a new Holy Observer up!


These kinds of stories are the ones that test my opposition to the death penalty the most.


I rearranged the links on the left a bit. Added Andy's site as well as a few gaming ones, and The Holy Observer. Good stuff.

This is so me in my college days. Not anymore, of course.
i am a mild mannered assassination victim

What Famous Leader Are You?
defining emerging church

From tallskinnykiwi.com as he discusses what this whole "emerging church" thing means to him and how he's seeing it played out.

The real difference lies in a new way of understanding church. When emerging people zoom out to see the whole church, the invisible church, they see church in modular form, as discrete but connected elements working together in a harmonious system. Church life then has more to do with the combination of many activities and projects and events than participation with any single event or commitment that tries to define the church experience.

You could say that the same change has happened to banking. We hardly ever “go to our bank” and no longer have a single banker, but instead utilize a vast range of financial services to manage our assets. As the emerging church becomes more modular, attention moves away from the single event (the worship service in many of our denominations) and relies more on festivals, projects, relational events and spontaneous happenings. The church in its invisible form (source code, to use new media language) is privileged over its visible expression which is seen as temporary and changeable. This may explain why some emerging churches decide not to have a worship service at all but rather a series of interrelated happenings that meet that need. They see church as what they are, rather than what they do.

You can read the entire entry here. This is so easy to read and understand but so hard to do! It's difficult to break out of a mindset you've had your whole life about what church is and how you do it.



I ran into Relevant while I was at Cornerstone this past summer. It's a pretty nifty magazine for twentysomethings. I had a bit of a billing hiccup with them but all is back in order now and I should be getting my magazines again. You should check it out. I am generally against things that appear to try so hard to be, well, relevant...but I can't come up with many other reasons to not like the mag so you should check it out and get a trial issue or something.


Strangely addicting. Nate should like that game, seeing as how it involves penguins. He may not appreciate the role they have. But they look like they're having fun! Most of the people I game with online have scores above 300 but I have yet to break 270. I just can't get the sweet spot on the bat I guess.

EDIT: Found it! 322.9 is as far as I can get. Actually, I did it once and am content not to try to repeat it. Um, yeah.


Tonight I called into a radio talk show for the first time in my life. I don't do that sort of thing, I'm not that sort of person. But I put on kfax on my way home because it occasionally has good programs but this time a show called Lifeline was on. I usually don't listen to this show because I am often annoyed by the typical judgmental self-righteous Christianese noise that comes from it. Well today I made the mistake of listening and I couldn't turn it off. They were talking about a Carl's Jr. ad including Hugh Hefner with the tagline "because some men don't like the same thing every night."

I listened for about ten minutes of the hosts talking about this commercial with one ditto caller after another talking about how awful it was and how they would boycott Carl's Jr. and I was thinking about calling in. The whole tone was negative and they kept talking about the decline of our nation and how people will go out and sleep with the neighbor's wife because of these ads. What was probably the sealer for me was the fact that they actually laughed when a caller made a connection between mad cow disease being bad, promiscuity being bad, and "eternal flames" being bad. So these hosts of a Christian talkshow are laughing about people going to hell.

I called up and said that while the commercial is of dubious moral character, and CJ's shouldn't try to deny it's talking about sex with different women, they should have better things to talk about. They should maybe talk about why the commercial appeals to men or how we as Christians can contribute in a positive way to changing the environment. I said if I weren't a Christian and I happened upon the show I would be pretty upset at the fact that Christians are sitting there talking crap about CJ's moral failings and laughing at the fact they believe I am going to hell.

They let me talk, and then talked about how it's important to engage culture, and they're helping to start watercooler conversations where people can witness to their friends. Hopefully they'll speak in an encouraging way rather than simply condemning their friends for this moral bankruptcy. Hopefully they'll leave out the part about eternal separation from God being funny. (Although the radio hosts did try to say they weren't laughing about someone going to hell, so at least they don't think it's okay to do so. Good thing they cleared that up.)

Sometimes the modern Christian culture really bugs me.


This stinks. I liked Mora Jr. as our defensive coordinator much better than Erickson as our coach. Erickson sucks. And if Mora takes those assistant coaches? Blah. Things aren't going great for the Niners these days.


Once again I feel like changing this blog from using blogger to using Movable Type. The problem is, Movable Type is more difficult to use than Blogger, and I don't really need to do it. I think I just get periodically discontent with the status quo and desire change. Hopefully it'll pass...I have much better things to do than fiddle with MT.
If you have the time, this is pretty cool. Pseudo-fictional autobiographical account of a man growing up Christian, losing his faith in a hospital chaplaincy, and how he kept it. It appears to be part of a larger blog that has achieved some degree of notoriety: the author has a book deal. So I may have to check him out.


slide back in

I feel like I haven't been in the normal swing of things for about a month now. December was a hectic month, and Janelle was in town which further increased its lack of normalcy as a time frame. oneeighty was quickly followed by the youth group taking over church services...and then on the 31st I hopped down to San Diego to spend more time with my fiancee. Crazy times.

But now I'm home and things will ostensibly be returning to the "normal" swing. School's back in session and I can sub again, no particular holidays to mess with youth ministry scheduling, oneeighty's in like two weeks...so yeah, it's back to life. But I feel like life is good. I have a great life actually. Sometimes when I sit back and contemplate the myriad ways God has blessed me I am overcome, or overwhelmed, or something. I can't really explain it.

This past week I read a book by A.W. Tozer called The Pursuit of God. I really appreciated it, you should check it out. There are online versions available even. A few of my favorite quotes include...

"To have found God and still to pursue Him is the soul's paradox of love, scorned indeed by the too easily satisfied religionist, but justified in happy experience by the children of the burning heart."

"The man who has God for his treasure has all things in one."

"God wills that we should push on into His presence and live our whole life there. This is to be known to us in conscious experience. It is more than a doctrine to be held; it is a life to be enjoyed every moment of every day."

"...for millions of Christians...God is no more real than He is to the non-Christian. They go through life trying to love an ideal and be loyal to a mere principle."

"While we are looking at God we do not see ourselves--blessed riddance. The man who has struggled to purify himself and has had nothing but repeated failures will experience real relief when he stops tinkering with his soul and looks away to the perfect One."

"Social religion is perfected when private religion is purified."

"...the only thinkable relation between us is one of full Lordship on His part and complete submission on ours. We owe Him every honor that is in our power to give him. Our everlasting grief lies in giving Him anything less."

"We must of necessity be servant to someone, either to God or to sin."

"The labor of self-love is a heavy one indeed...As long as you set yourself up as a little god to which you must be loyal there will be those who will delight to offer affront to your idol. How then can you hope to have inward peace?"

"...now you feel hurt because the world is saying about you the very things you have been saying about yourself? Only yesterday you were telling God that you were nothing, a mere worm of the dust. Where is your consistency?"

"One of the greatest hindrances to internal peace which the Christian encounters is the common habit of dividing our lives into two areas - the sacred and the secular."

"It is not what a man does that determines whether his work is sacred or secular, it is why he does it."

Okay so that was a lot of quotes. Read through 'em, they're great. And read the book. It's a challenging and refreshing book for those pursuing God.