Monday, October 31, 2011

Who's Your Favorite Saint?

Well, today is All Saints' Day! Over the past five years, I have grown in my appreciation and understanding of the saints, and I think it should be a feast day that all churches, from the highest of high churches to the lowest of low churches, celebrate with gusto! It reminds us our faith is ours because of the faithful yet broken people throughout the generations who have continued to tell the story, even in the midst of overwhelming persecution, of God's redemptive work. We truly stand on the shoulders of those who have come before us. I like how Fred Pratt Green sums it up in his hymn:

"Rejoice in God's saints, today and all days!
A world without saints forgets how to praise.
Their faith in acquiring the habit of prayer,
their depth of adoring, Lord, help us to share."

So, what saint (picking from outside of your family or local congregation) has impacted your faith journey the most?

I have many ideas - St. Benedict, St. Augustine, David Nyvall, Lina Sandell - but I think two that I always come back to are Corrie and Betsie ten Boom. These were two Dutch sisters who lived together during the Nazi occupation of the 1940s. When the plight of Jews became severe, they risked everything to hide them in their house because they believed that Christ's call extended love to everyone. Even when Betsie lay dying in the concentration camp, she looked around at guards and prisoners alike and whispered to Corrie, "Tell them there is no pit so deep that God's love is not deeper still." I think that may be one of my favorite quotes in the whole world. Betsie did die in Ravensbruck, but Corrie survived and lived her life determined to tell people about God's love and forgiveness, even coming face-to-face with one of her former concentration camp guards and extending the hand of forgiveness despite her inner turmoil. She wrote this story in her autobiography, The Hiding Place, which I would recommend highly if you want to know more about these women. Here's a picture of them (from left to right: Betsie, Corrie, and their sister Nollie):

So, that's my pick.

One of my new running pet peeves: when I'm listening to an audiobook and the reading is drowned out by the sound of the el or sirens. It always seems to happen at key moments in the story. I know, not a real problem, but annoying.

I saw a big jug of aloe vera juice at Trader Joe's and almost barfed all over it. Unless I somehow fall asleep on a beach with my mouth open and get sunburn on the back of my throat, I'm not drinking aloe vera juice. to World Relief. Happy All Saints' Day!

Full Weekends, Halloween, and Red Shorts

Well, this weekend consisted of a wedding (Yeah, Tricia and Patrick!), a halloween party, and a potluck at church. I've filled my social quota for at least the next two weeks. If you need me, I'll be holding a prolonged session of SSR (sustained silent reading) in my bedroom/living room.

Well, it's truly been a freaky weekend: both the Gophers and Vikings won! As the late REM once sang, "It's the end of the world as we know it, and I feel fine."

This year I felt completely uninspired when it came to halloween costumes. I just couldn't put any energy into thinking about a creative costume, let alone going out to find the elements that would be needed for the costume I thought up. As such, I went down into the basement and grabbed one of the old orange polyester choir robes from the church with a complimentary yellow robe and went as a choir member. It's not as good as previous costumes - Ellen, the internet, fundamentalist pastor - but it got the job done.

If I had a kid, I would definitely try to go by Rosie O'Donnell's house. She just moved in about a block away from the church/my building. She better at least be giving out full candy bars, that's all I'm saying. Ahh...memories of judging people by the candy they gave out! I mean, there definitely still is a hierarchy of candies...and no one should be given bit-o-honeys or hard candy of any type. Werthers Originals, butterscotch discs, and root beer barrels should be reserved for a decorative candy dish at an estate sale, not for the dear children of our society. Speaking of which, it probably wouldn't be a bad idea for me to go and buy some candy just in case we do have trick-or-treaters this year. I could always resort to turning off all my lights and hibernating in my room. Vamos a ver.

I don't know if you've ever been one to lose clothes, but I have been known to misplace a sweater every once in a while. What I find fascinating is how the newer clothes I really like tend to be the ones I lose while the clothes I have had for 10+ years always seem to be on the top of my laundry basket. For instance, I couldn't lose my 10+ year old red nike shorts if I took a plane over a remote jungle, covered them in cow meat, and dropped them in piranha infested waters. The next week I'd find them in the mail with a note saying someone had found them, recognized them, and had them dry-cleaned for me before sending them back. You know, these red shorts:

Seriously, I've had them since my junior year of high school when I would wear them with my red-and-blue tie-dyed chemistry shirt for my tennis uniform before we ordered shirts. My mom would make comments like, "If I were the coach, I wouldn't let you play looking like that." To which I replied, "If you were my coach, I wouldn't be playing tennis," or "If you were my coach, we would have bigger problems than what shorts I wore," or "(roll of the eyes while walking up to my room)."

Okay, I need to go for a run. As you can probably guess, weddings, halloween parties, and potlucks do not make for light eating. I'm going to have to start putting those maternity bands on my jeans soon. Later.

Wednesday, October 26, 2011

Change Jar Total, Signs of Apocalypse/Aging, and Fall Weather

Well, I am happy to report that I had $91 of change in my change jar. My hope was somewhere in the $100 ballpark, so that's nice. Granted, I still felt like a cool kid walking into the bank with a big jar of change, but...

You may have seen it on my facebook page, but what is the world coming to when Pat Robertson is calling the Republican field too extreme?

The money quote: "Well, if they want to lose, this is the game for losers." When the guy who called for the assassination of Hugo Chavez and blamed Haiti's problems on a pact with the devil, when this same guy calls the Republican field "too extreme," you may have problems in the general election. Just sayin'.

I love how Hillary Clinton is still rocking the scrunchie during State Department meetings. Chelsea, it's time for an intervention.

Signs that you're getting older: you refer to restaurants or stores by what used to be in the building. In Duluth this past week, I caught myself saying things like, "You know, where Chi-Chi's used to be," or "Let's meet down in Canal Park by the old Grand Slam building." I remember hearing my Dad say things like that and thinking, "Hey Deano-saur (see what I did there?), maybe when you drove the Model-T down the old cow trails that was a golf course. But now that we've moved from the caves to houses, it's a gas station." Now, I understand the difficulty in keeping up with all of the business changes! Not to mention, I occasionally suffer from bouts of nostalgia.

You know what else makes me feel old? Writing letters of reference for people. Where you say thinks like, "Almost ten years ago, I met...". I probably wrote right after that, "We first met by the old Blockbuster on Lawrence and Lincoln."

Well, the application process is slowly wrapping up. The essays are mostly done, the CV is written, the forms are filled out, the writing sample has been chosen, and the references are set. Now I pay the fees, attach the files, and begin the wait. It is almost advent after all, so I might as well own the waiting period. One good bit of news on the fees part: North Park puts both undergrad and seminary transcripts on the same page, so I only have to pay for one official transcript instead of two. I mean, I'm only saving $20, but it's the small victories in life. Maybe I should take that $20 saved and put it under my mattress!

Can all Chicagoans take a moment and admit that we've had a beautiful fall? We are trained to complain about the weather, but the weather has been near perfect over the last month and a half. I know, it's always glass-half-full with me...the eternal optimist. I think the last person I mentioned this fall weather to told me to get ready because La Nina is going to be sending us an extreme winter. Now, that's a Chicagoan!

Well, I'm going to break my fast and get ready for a day of meetings. This sounds boring, but there are some interesting ones today. Later.

Monday, October 24, 2011

Sides, Driving, and Savings Accounts

Geez, sides are really destroying the competition in our thanksgiving poll. Granted, I couldn't agree more, but still. Truth be told, I could take or leave the turkey. Just fill that plate up with carbs and starch!

My drive home from Duluth, usually a dull and solitary affair, was enlivened by the presence of my brother Stephen sitting shotgun (mostly). Boy, trips go so much faster when you can talk to someone. Topics of conversation included: our individual Duluth experiences from the past few days, a discussion about infant baptism vs. adult baptism, my advice for sustaining seminary student excellence, his occasionally open disdain for Garrison Keillor and twangy folk music, and a run down of his seminary experience up to this point. Granted, there was also the little brother/big brother dynamic that allows him to contribute six dollars for gas (literally six dollars - which almost got us out of Superior) and drive 1/8 of the time, but it was well worth it.

I am officially starting a savings account (which, until it gets above the minimum $300 needed for a free savings account at Chase, will be stored under my mattress (not really under my mattress, but the equivalent)) for a new computer. This mac has served me well for almost four years now, but she is beginning to show signs of wear. For instance, like an elderly person, she will occasionally drift off to sleep in the middle of conversation. Similarly, it takes her a little longer to perform tasks that used to come so easily. The trip up the stairs (i.e. opening an application) that used to take twelve seconds now stretches on and on, sometimes pinwheeling for minutes while I perform other tasks around the house. Finally, cracks have developed around the screen and typing pad. All this to say, I think I will need a new computer before I begin the next chapter of school. So, my first installment of my savings account will come from a full change jar that has been accumulating for almost a year now. I just need to find a bank that will count it and cash it without taking a big cut (I'm looking disdainfully at you, Coinstar).

You know what really grinds my gears? The fact that I basically need to take out a loan to apply for grad schools. $50-$75 per school really begins to add up. Why can't they centralize their application processes into one like the law schools do? That would seem to level the playing field between those who can afford to apply to 10 schools and those who can't. We are the 99% after all! Then you add "official transcripts" and the next thing you know your house is being foreclosed. I've seen it a thousand times.

I just received my rebate from the AT&T phone I bought probably three months ago. I think I actually liked the wait because not it seems like free money. You know, it's like when you buy plane tickets or concert tickets months in advance; by the time the date roles around, it feels like someone gave you free tickets. Maybe the more fiscally responsible don't feel that way, but it sure seems like it to me!

After a run on this beautiful Tuesday morning, it's time for some breakfast. Later.

Sunday, October 23, 2011

Vikings/Packers, Yvonne Eider, and Side Notes

First, a new poll question is on your left. Get in the Thanksgiving spirit (because I'm trying to avoid getting into the Christmas spirit too early!). So, vote there and comment while you're at it.

Well, the Vikings vs. Packers game was at least not a total blowout. It started out looking like we had a chance, but that's how you know the Vikings are in trouble. This second half we began by implementing our patented implosion strategy, where we lay down on defense and self-destruct on offense to form a perfect storm of terribleness. No one can lose to us when we set our phasers to implode. I know it's supposed to catch the other team off guard when you pass on first down, but when you have the best running back in the league, please run the ball. However, we did show some signs of life towards the end, and Ponder looked like he could be a pretty good QB in the coming years. Also, they were the Super Bowl champs last year; I'm just glad we were in this one (at least that's what I'm telling myself now that the game is over).

Yesterday we celebrated the life of Yvonne Eider at Duluth Gospel Tabernacle. She was a Sunday school and Missionette (our Wednesday night program - and granted a weird name if you didn't grow up with it as normal) teacher for over thirty years. While she never had her own biological children, she impacted thousands at DGT and beyond. It reminded me that while evangelicals place so much (too much) emphasis on marriage, it was because Yvonne was single that she could pour herself into the lives of her extended family and more importantly, her church family. She was a constant present at the church and in her family, and I have many fond memories involving her and the rest of the Eider family. She will be missed.

On a much less important and silly note, I was reminded that Minnesotans know how to feed people at church. You should have seen the hotdishes (Minnesota-speak for casseroles), jello, and bars that overflowed the tables. There were two tater tot hotdishes! I mean, it would no doubt have been a tough meal for any vegetarian or someone watching their carbs, but that did not apply to me.

The new voice command features on the iPhone kind of creep me out. A phone shouldn't know that much. Plus, it's probably somehow connected to the mark of the beast. Just sayin'.

I'm glad they're adding bacon to the KFC dinner bowl. I was worried that there wasn't pain radiating up my left arm the last time I ate the one without bacon.

Speaking of health, I think I'm going to sign up for the Chicago Polar Dash Half Marathon on January 14th. This will give me the perfect reason to both run further than three miles and run outside during the winter. I mean, if my mom can run year-round in Duluth/Breckenridge, I can do it in Chicago. So, let's do this! Plus, it's on Saturday, so I don't have to take off a Sunday to run!

Friday, October 21, 2011

Hoarders, Internet Discoveries, and Vaca Update

So, last night Luke and Chelsey were watching "Sister Wives" up in my room before bed while I played Angry Birds on their iPad. When the time came for bed, they both went downstairs but left the TV on. I continued playing away until I noticed that a new show had come on: "Hoarders." I have never seen it before and never want to see it again. I think the images of the woman's house will haunt my sleep and suck out my soul like a dementor. It's amazing how OCD can cause one person to keep their house spotless while provoking another to store every bit of crap they've ever laid their hands on until their house looks like it just landed in Oz after being lifted and spun in a tornado. There might even be a dead witch under the boxes of crap, who knows? It gives me the willies. I'm just glad it wasn't an animal hoarding episode.

One discovery at my parents' house that I forgot to mention: my mom apparently stores her canned homemade salsa in the closet of the bathroom. It's an interesting experience to be searching for a towel and instead see jar upon jar of salsa in the place where everyone comes to discard their waste.

I find it disturbing how much people want to revel in the details of a death - even if it is a cruel dictator. There's something terribly morbid about viewing photos of the body and reading the play-by-play of his capture. Even if you think this is a good thing, do you think it is something to be celebrating? I guess it's the same way I feel about war: even if you think it is necessary it should never be something we praise as a good in and of itself or something we should celebrate or revel in.

How had I not seen this child giving the pre-game speech from Miracle? Amazing! Seriously, it's worth the watch.

Well, Rush Limbaugh is accusing Obama of killing Christians because he is assisting Ugandas in helping fight the Lord's Resistance Army - a group known for their kidnapping and conscription of children into their army. How much lower can you go, Rush? Maybe you could dig deep into research, say Google "Lord's Resistance Army" to explore what you are talking about before you start the talking part. As usual, leave it to Colbert to point out obvious hypocrisy and just plain craziness:

Last night ended with good friends (including Pam Carlson up from Mahtowa, which obviously included a trip to the Brewhouse before the campfire!) around the campfire eating smores. It doesn't get much better than that. I love going to bed with the smell of campfire smoke on me.

Okay, today is the day to go running along the lake, even if the wind is whipping off the waters and it's 45 degrees. Speaking of running, I have made myself run every day this week because apparently I've decided on this vacation I can eat how ever much I want whenever I want. This is especially great when you end up going out to eat with different people throughout the day. There's something in me that just can't order a salad when I go out to eat.

Finally, I have four rough drafts of essays for my applications! I'm glad I accomplished the one work goal I had for this trip. Now, french toast breakfast with Luke, Chelsey, Katie, and Eric! Living the dream!

Tuesday, October 18, 2011

News from the North Country

Well, I made it to Duluth after some interesting events along highway 210. First, my parents alerted me to a great bakery in McGregor that is seriously amazing! It seems so random that the best bakery is in the middle of nowhere (sorry for the slam on your neighborhood, Covenant Pines people). So, then I'm cruising along when just pass Cromwell the highway is closed. This obviously isn't unheard of, but there is no signs for detours and if you take a random road you could end up on some isolationist militia man's compound hearing the strains of "Dueling Banjos" as you dodge guard dogs and "U.S. Out of UN!" signs.

So, I check my map and find this winding road that seems to get me around. So, as I'm about ten miles into this meandering route on a one-way dirt road known as Ditchbank Forest Road (not a joke), I come upon more "road" construction. In this case, it's three guys putting fill on the road. I get out of my car to check if I can get around and the foreman informs me that I have to wait 30 minutes to get by. At this point I decide I should check to make sure all my oxen are alive and none of my passengers have cholera because apparently I've fallen into a wormhole and ended up on the Oregon Trail. So, now I figure it would take just as much time to find a new route, so I backtrack a half-mile to some cross country skiing trails and go for a run while I wait. It wasn't the most runnable trail and probably shouldn't have been attempted in running shoes, but it was the best way to maximize my time.

So, now I'm in Duluth at the home of Luke and Chelsey Harju. Not only do I feel at home because it's Luke and Chels, but also the upstairs guest bedroom has slanted ceilings and a built-in dresser just like my bedroom growing up (and I use bedroom loosely...more like a hallway to a bigger bedroom).

Yesterday I wrote my first essay of purpose for my applications. It is hard work to write only a page or two and feel like you've said anything of substance while at the same time avoiding: "I like your school because: a. it's cool; second, you have smart people; and d. I'm awesome too! So, you should probably accept, I'm really into you. Check yes or no, and if it's yes, send me a super big financial aid package to make it worth my while! Love, Dave." So, Duke essay down, Garrett, Boston, and Notre Dame to go!

I also went down to First Covenant Church with my grandma to hear Belgian missionary Barbara Swanson speak about her work with refugees in Antwerp. It's kind of funny because I played piano when she and her husband led seminary chapel a few weeks ago, and they visited ResCov about two weeks before that. So, good times had by all especially when my grandma forced me to play the piano during lunch. That was really awesome.

The night finished with a cold run by the radio antennas, Papa Murphy's dinner at my sister and brother-in-law's (with Luke and Chelsey), a few Seinfeld episodes, and then Scott Pilgrim vs. the World to end the night. All and all it was a pretty good day. Hopefully today I will get another essay done. You know what I say, shoot for the moon. Even if you miss you'll end up in the stars. Boy, I love inspirational quotes written in loopy silver fonts on black journals with a few stars trailing through the background.

I had a dream last night that I was at a thrift store and saw a book called Kierkegaard for Left-Handers. I didn't know if the book itself was physically easier for left-handers to use or if it had excerpts from Kierkegaard that were especially pertinent for a left-hander. I'm going to ponder that one a while.

Speaking of Ponder, thank God for quarterback changes. Can I get an amen? Later.

Sunday, October 16, 2011

Live Blogging from Breckenridge

Well, I'm in the basement of Breckenridge watching the Vikings/Bears game on DVR because my mom and I just got back from seeing the The Temptations concert in Fargo. I have had to take evasive action to avoid hearing the score. This has included: not listening to the radio on the way home, having my mom check my text messages to let me know if they were game-related, and having her turn on the TV and play the game from the beginning so I wouldn't accidentally see the score. Honestly, I'm not expecting much from either of these teams. Well, we're down 9-0 and looking pathetic. Awesome.

So, my drive to Breckenridge was fairly uneventful, which is exactly what you want out of a long drive. I am listening to Clash of Kings, the second in the Fire and Ice series (Clash of Kings being the first). I was a bit exhausted having the beautiful wedding of Emily and Ryan Anderson the night before (Congratulations!), so I had to stop for a 20 minute catnap around Tomah.

Tonight's concert was definitely an interesting experience. First, I saw the three people (literally - although on the way out it had grown to about eight) participating in the Occupy Fargo-Moorehead movement on the corner of Broadway and 3rd St. I saw a djembe, which means it's a true movement of the people. I couldn't decided whether it was more inspiring or humorous.

The concert itself was...fine. First, only one of the members is from the original Temptations is still touring with them. So, even calling them "The Temptations" is a bit of a stretch. Second, some of the guys are not moving like they may have been 40 years ago. For instance, some of the moves the bass was doing should probably only be attempted if he is supervised in the aquatic center of an assisted living facility. The choreography also wasn't quite in rhythm. Every once in a while one of them was spinning the wrong way or not quite in time with the rest of the others. When we left, my mom said, "Well, I give that a 4" (out of 10). But it had it's moments and was definitely a fun time.. You forget how many of the songs you know because they are part of the air we breathe.

Oh, now we're at 16-3. I'm going to start the chant; join me if you would like to: "Ponder, Ponder, Ponder!" (the Vikings back-up QB). Oh, wait, I spoke to soon: 24-3. I'm going to start watching it in fast-forward and slow it down if the tide ever turns. I'm not holding my breath. And there's the missed field goal after a 4th and 3 false start. I'm going to bed. Next stop: Duluth!

Tuesday, October 11, 2011

Solo Wedding, Mo Money Mo Problems?, and Tigers

So, last night I had a dream about my future wedding, only there was one thing missing: the bride. I apparently was marrying myself, and in the dream this didn't seem odd at all. It was the whole ceremony in a church and everything; there was even a slide show. I debated whether this was more blog worthy or therapist worthy, but I thought it was too funny to pass up sharing. So, thank you subconscious for that nocturnal ego boost!

Well, Chris Christie endorsed Mitt Romney. This could be re-stated, "Chris Christie endorses the only Republican with a chance to come out of the primaries that doesn't give anyone left of Rush Limbaugh a nervous tick." Or, "Chris Christie endorses the only Republican that can talk for three straight minutes without saying something crazy, offensive, or categorically false for anyone who has access to Google." I mean, Huntsman too, but nobody's paying any attention to him...and Gingrich, but I almost fell asleep just typing his name.

So, one song I've always liked is Notorious B.I.G.'s "Mo Money Mo Problems," catchy tune, interesting message, etc. However (and maybe you've heard me theorize this before), I think this theory could use a slight adjustment. I think it's more like a bell curve where more money creates less problems for quite a while before it peaks and once again creates more problems. For instance, more money could mean less debt, less creditor calls (not one of my problems, just an example), etc. I made a little chart to illustrate this idea.

Okay, I'm being a bit facetious/hyperbolic for the peak moment, but I think the point is clear enough. I'm hoping I can get this published somewhere, maybe an economics journal?

I'm glad to see the Tigers beating up on the Rangers today. I'm cheering for my division because if they do good it makes me feel better about the Twins performing so poorly against them.

Minnesota is looming large on the horizon. I can't wait to jump in the car and meet it!

Okay, off to work on some church stuff. Later.

Monday, October 10, 2011

Things I'm Excited to Do in Minnesota, Confessions, and New Christmas Albums 2011

First, notice the new poll question. Your participation is requested. If you're not going to comment, the least you can do is click on one of the answers.

On Saturday I'm headed to Minnesota, and I am SO excited. It's been far too long since I've breathed the sanctified air of the North/God's country. So, I'm thinking Saturday I'll drive up to the Cities and then Sunday I'll head up I-35 towards Duluth. Here's the view of Duluth as you crest over the hill on I-35, in case you're wondering:

Things I am looking forward to:
1. Seeing my sister Anna, b.i.l. Peter, and grandma.
2. Staying with Chelsey and Luke in their recently remodeled home.
3. Sitting outside on a blustery day...maybe somewhere up the North Shore.
4. Going for a run along the lake path.
5. Eating/drinking at the Brewhouse...hopefully at least twice, and at least once with the right reverend Pam Carlson.
6. A few random run-ins with friends (and, of course, the flip side is those awkward run-ins...).
7. Eating at least once at Bridgeman's (ice cream parlor/eatery) with my grandma. Random Fact: This was where I was first gainfully employed a 15 year-old busboy. Remuneration: $4.25/hour, which was below minimum wage even at the time, but I was still considered "child labor" since I was not yet 16. I distinctly remember the sticky remnants of ice cream toppings left on the vein-side of my forearm. The one good thing that came from this job was the discovery of hot fudge malts, which are much better than the famous sibling, the chocolate malt, and have been my choice of malt ever since. Also, I think my grandma has eaten here with a group of her friends every Saturday morning since time immemorial.

Do you think it's a bad sign when you're really good at writing prayers of confession but prayers of thanksgiving come less easy? As I was writing a prayer of confession, I realized that it takes very little work for me to think of ways we screw up; my lists, often divided by semicolons, could go on and on. I guess I can chalk another one up to an evangelical upbringing!

I'm loving The Wonder Years streaming on Netflix...even if they do have to put in weird covers of songs (for instance, the awful substitute for Joe Cocker's "With a Little Help from My Friends," which may be a version Joe Cocker recorded in later years, I'm not sure). I'm a sucker for a coming of age story set in the 60s (which is why I love Duncan's The Brother's K...or Forrest Gump for that matter)

She & Him releasing a Christmas album does make me all the more excited for the Christmas music season. Any other new releases coming out this year that I should know about?

Okay, time to go to work.

Tuesday, October 4, 2011

Signs of the Season, Game of Thrones, and Body Sunday

I have to say that one of my favorite signs of the season is when the usually abandoned parking lot a block away from my house starts selling pumpkins. Why? Good question, blog reader. First, it is a sign of my beloved fall. Second, in mid-November the pumpkins are traded for wreaths and Christmas trees, 93.9 turns over to all Christmas songs, and Advent begins at church. It's a magical time all around! Selling pumpkins out of a mobile home in an abandoned lot is the beginning sign of the whole holiday season that I love so dearly. I think this year I will be purchasing a tree to help engender Christmas cheer. Plus, I'm in Chicago all the way through Christmas, so I have time to enjoy it (or it will help me cope while I listen teary-eyed to "I'll Be Home for Christmas" on Christmas Eve with a glass of egg know, depending on how I'm looking at the proverbial half-filled/half-empty glass on a particular day).

Reading Game of Thrones reminds me of the Ken Follett books, Pillars of the Earth and World without End, which is a good thing in my judgment. The audiobook of World without End got me through much of my marathon training last spring. Speaking of which, I need to sign up for at least a half marathon soon. I'm staying consistent with my running, but without a race to motivate me, I will not take one step over the usual 3 mile route.

I hate when Apple has one of these release days. First, I have to listen to all the techies salivating over their prognostications of what may or may not be released (is it an iPhone 49? Is it 12G? Does it do my laundry while showing me a movie that will be released in 2015?). Then, the day of the announcement you have to hear all about something that really isn't that new, hear people complaining about how it didn't live up to unrealistic expectations (it didn't bring about the coming of the Messiah and the final battle of Armageddon! Why should I bother upgrading!), and then watch the same people go out and get it anyway.

This week at ResCov we are focusing on stewardship of the body and sex. No doubt it will be very interesting, but you may not be surprised to know that there aren't too many songs about body/sex within hymnody and even fewer - if any - in the "contemporary" praise and worship category. So, we may be going with a more general theme of praise and adoration this week...
Although I could probably write some awesome praise song about the body. Let's give it a try:

(To the tune of "Shout to the Lord")
Our bodies, Your Temple,
elbows and knees and feet,
shoulders and eyes,
ankles and thighs,
lift their voice to worship you.

Well, I have a good start on a first verse. Now, I am going to work. Let me know if you have any ideas for songs.

Monday, October 3, 2011

The Scam of Sea Salt, Bikes, and Marimekko's Debt of Gratitude (to Me)

I think one of the biggest scams perpetrated on humanity is "sea salt." You write sea salt on something and then sell it for twice as much. Well, you're not fooling me! That goes for "cracked pepper" as well.

I think bikers are going crazy in this city lately. In the past month I have encountered far too many bikers riding the wrong way down a one way street while I attempt to drive the right way on that street. If bikers want to be legitimate, you have to follow at least the basic rules of the road. I'm not going to begrudge the occasional ran stoplight or rolling stop sign, but come on people! Also, bikes simply should not ride on Ashland. I get anxiety just thinking about trying to pass one of them while simultaneously doing my best to avoid side-swiping the car next to me.

Well, I made it through my jam-packed weekend into a busy Monday, and now I am reaping the much earned rewards by relaxing and reading Game of Thrones. It was one bandwagon I knew I would jump on when I had the chance, and having recently jumped off the Vikings bandwagon that is careening out of control towards a bottomless abyss, I was looking for another bandwagon (I'm not really off the Vikings bandwagon; I'm hopelessly stuck there hoping that I at least find some top draft picks in the depths of the pit of despair.).

I think Marimekko should give me some of the credit for their latest success. After all, I hocked their product like no one's business for a good two years at the Sweden Shop. I would even give customers a little history, telling how Jackie O. bought eight Marimekko dresses back in the 60s leading to its popularity boom on this side of the Atlantic. So, all that to say, You're welcome, Marikmekko. And you can write that check out to David Bjorlin...that's BJ...OR...LIN. Lotta Jansdotter, the same goes for you. Don't look down and try to avoid my eyes! And don't even get me started on any import store that sells tomtes. You know, these:

I remember unpacking and pricing boxes of these things a few Christmases ago. The hardest part was figuring out which was which on the packing list to make sure you got everything. It's hard to tell 100 tomtes apart by little more than the size of the dala horse they carry.

Well, now I am going to go for a run. I ate at Garcia's a little over 3 hours ago, so we'll see if that was a wise decision about a mile in. I'm guessing it's not going to be a great decision, but sometimes you have to remind your body who's boss...or pay the price for overindulgence...or both. That's all.