31 August 2005


Every now and then I come across a great band that for whatever reason, I just didn't hear about.  The most likely cause is my own self-absorption.  Excluding that, I'm willing to blame my friend Scot whose musical elitism knows few rivals. Well, actually Neal's the king there, but since I hang out with Scot more it's a fair bet he's been rubbing off on me.  (Not like that, sicko!)

Anyway, I listened to Barlowgirl's new release Another Journal Entry and there was some good stuff on it.  When I went back and listened to their previous release, Barlowgirl,  I was hooked.  Don't know how I missed 'em last year, but they have my attention now.

29 August 2005

Get it right

"The proper term is 'smite evil', not 'bump uglies'." -- The Order of the Stick by Rich Burlew


After a very long lapse during which I very nearly went into withdrawal, the Joss Whedon machine has finally produced a follow-up to the greatest television show ever created - Firefly.

It is a movie using all the original cast (yay!) and is called Serenity.  Needless to say, I am looking forward to this more than just about any other cinematic event in recent years.

24 August 2005

A couple of things...

First off, I want to welcome Nathan home.  He's been away for a while and we were all starting to have withdrawals.  Look for the party scene to pick up now.

The other thing I wanted to point out is how abso-freakin-lutely amazing Jason Statham is going to be in the new Luc Besson film Transporter .2

Catch the trailer here.

22 August 2005

Ouch. Ouch. Ouch.

Friends help you move.
Real friends help you move bodies.
This last weekend I had a bunch of stuff to move but the help I had lined up kind of fell through. So there I was all by my lonesome hauling some serious heavy stuff up several flights of stairs.  It turns out that all those stairs I've been doing every day at the gym sure paid off.  Unfortunately they are in no way equal to the number of stairs or the volume of crap I dragged up and down them.  I woke up this morning and my calves hurt so bad I barely made it out of bed.  Thirty minutes of stretching later I could more or less walk normal, but stairs are still a challenge. ;-)

I did have a couple of great nights with some friends in Seattle which made the whole weekend enjoyable.  It's always great to catch up and socialize with good people.

19 August 2005

Scared in Krakow

This post is the text of an email I received from my friend Cory.  I laughed so hard I just about fell out of my chair.  Then I knew I had to share this with the world.

I'm all alone in Krakow right now at a 24 hour internet place.  The following is a true story, Dan Brown style...

Chapter 118
Cory was cold, tired, and hungry.  All he wanted to do was take a nap on the train to krakow.  Two trashy europeans entered his cabin.  Dang, he thought.  He still tried to close his eyes, but they were snickering in some unknown slovic language at their cellphone.  Finally after several long attempts, he managed to fall asleep.

Chapter 119
The two trashy europeans were eyeing the sleeping boy.  One had a beautiful faux-hawk, he looked like a majestic peacock, ready to court his female prey.  Except this prey wasnt female.  The peakok and his companion were laughing at incoming text messages, while drinking a beer and smoking cigarettes on the train.  The peacock was making jokes of what he could do to the sleeping boy.

Chapter 120
Cory suddendly awoke from a nightmare.  He looked around glad not to actually be facing a 7-10 split in hell bowling with the devil.  He looked over at the two odd looking young men and saw they were drinking beer.  A beer, Cory thought, now THATS what I need.  He pointed at the beers and asked where he could get one on the train.   "swolfihjsafjksafh" the peacock responded "i see" Cory said. Soon after that the peacock offered him his own beer. Cory reluctantly accepted, glad to finally meet some friends. "afhkhksad kshs khskdhf" said the other man "excuse me?" asked Cory.
"lsadfljdsaslfjl resturant?" as he pointed at the both of them.  Cory believed he was asking them if they wanted to go to dinner.  He was very excited, and was glad to have some people to eat with when they got to Krakow. "yes!" he nodded.

Chapter 121
The two europeans were extreamly happy that they had trapped thier prey, and the stupid American was oblivious.

Chapter 122
Just as the train arrived, Cory was ready to get out.  FINALLY, he thought.  It was just then when he realized dinner tonight might not be the best idea.  He looked down at the europeans cell phone and got a glimpse of his wallpaper.  It was a young teenage boy with his shirt off.  Then he spoke to Cory. "lshdfh dksfd?" and gave him a cute little tap on the head. "Yes." Cory nodded.  Realizing that was a tremendous mistake, not knowing what he was agreeing to. Uh-oh, he thought. The european was crushing Cory, and crushing him hard.  The hunger combined with the fatigue but a thick curtain over his gay-dar.  Cory had to do something.  And fast.  It was too late.

Chapter 123
The peacock knew he had Cory exactly where he wanted him.  And if he played his cards right, promiscuous sex was right around the corner.  All he had to do now was convince him to stay in an appartment with and buy him a couple drinks.

Chapter 124
Cory tried to leave the train without the two men, but they escorted him out, one in front, one behind.  Not good, Cory thought.  As everybody left the train, a barrage of hostel advertisers rushed the scene.  This could be my chance, Cory thought.  The two europeans apparently didn't have a place to stay, and Cory did.  At the Dizzy Dazy hostel.

Chapter 125
The two europeans had to act quick. "lets find a small apartment for us and the boytoy." the peacock said in czech. "good idea. then we will screw his brains out after he blacks out." said the other weird looking male. They both had a good laugh.

Chapter 126
All three men were standing around a travel agent.  Cory was trying to make a move.  Finially, he broke free for a moment, and asked another agent the directions to the Dizzy Dazy hostel.  He wrote them down as clearly as he could.  This would need to be a clean getaway, Cory thought.  Cory joined the peacock and the strange looking man as they talked to a travel agent. "You know," she said to Cory "they are trying to find a room with you in it."  Corys stomach turned upside down.  Am I dreaming?  Cory thought.  "No, tell them I already have a place booked and everything.  Please."  Said Cory to the agent with full eye contact and raised eyebrows, trying to emphasize his point.  She spoke to the young men in Czech, and they seemed to understand.  This is my chance, Cory thought.  He could see the exit.  It was now or never.  Cory lunged for the exit, turning back just once to say goodbye.  "Bye!" Cory said. "Bye..." Said the peacock, in a morose tone, like a puppydog who just lost his bone.  Cory knew he was free!  He had his directons in his hand and stepped outside.  Three steps later, he was completely lost.

Chapter 127
The two sex-fiended horndogs had been deceived.  This was unlikely, for they were pros. "How did he get away so easily!?" snarled the peacock. "It's, it's, his charm, and his dimples, he was just, so, attractive and perfect." responded the funny looking dork. "I know, he's like a unicorn, so beautiful, but untouchable.", longed the peacock.  The peacock had never let a target go before, and he wasn't about to.  Although Cory thought he was free, the peacock lifted his nose to the air and let in a giant wiff of Polish air.  This way he said, the boytoy's this way.

Chapter 128
Cory wandered in a small spiral, wearing two backpacks and holding a different Krakow map in each hand.  This looks great, he thought.  As he realized he was still right in front of the train station, it popped in his head that he was in danger.  Just at that moment, he glanced over behind the glass in the station and saw the two boys. Arghh!!!!!!!!!! Cory thought.  They were looking right at him.  It's all over, Cory said to himself.  This is how it's going to end.  Cory looked up at the sky and saw a dove fly overhead, chased by two hawks.  Perfect, he thought.  He closed his eyes, ready for the worst.  Darkness.

Chapter 129
"Excuse me!" Am I dead?  Cory thought.  Then he heard it again. "Excuse me?  You look lost, can I help you find where you're going?"  Cory opened his beautiful blue eyes, they were like an endless caribbean sea.  He looked over and saw a lady walking towards him. "Which hostel are you staying at?" Asked the lady.  "The Dizzy Dazy, can you help me?" Cory quickly responded.  "Yes!  I work there, I can walk you there." Said the angel.  Cory was the mormon, the boys were the locust, she was the seagulls.  Cory was princess leah, the boys were jabba the hut, the lady was lucas skywalker.  His savier.  The one.  Cory wasn't going to be a victim of leather bondage and S&M after all.  Oh yeah, he thought.  As he began to follow the lady, he looked back, apparently they hadn't seen him after all, as they were still standing behind the glass.

Chapter 130
After all, the europeans with their swolen members were actually just staring off into blank space.  They couldn't believe they had lost the most beautiful boy of their dreams. "We were so close" muttered the ugly one  "Too close, let's go have sex, you're pretty" said the beautiful peacock as he smiled  "Proseem." replied the moron.

Cory finially reached the Dizzy Dazy hostel after all.  The lady at the reception ask him if he was alright.  Apparently had had been sweating more than he thought.  It had been a stressfull day after all.  He went to go take a shower and realized he had forgotten his towel (for the second time this trip) at his last hostel.  Ugh, he thought.  He was hungry and left for a bite to eat at the town square.  He ate half his pizza, got it boxed up, and found the closest internet cafe to tell the tale.


This post was an email from Cory and all spelling errors, omissions, liable, copyright or trademark infringements, bad words, inappropriate phrasing or subject matter are probably intentional, humorous, and all his fault.  Hope you had a chuckle.

17 August 2005

United States of Wal-Mart

It seems that I can't go more than a few days without someone bringing up Wal-Mart these days. In my opinion they are one of the primary forces behind the downfall of western civilization, and I have no problem telling people that. Most of the time people just look at me like I'm a total nutter and the conversation fizzles.

Finally it seems, someone has taken the same arguments and thoughts I've shared and put them into a nice book. Which will probably not be sold at Wal-Mart. ;-)

Tarcher/Penguin recently released a book by John Dickers entitled The United States of Wal-Mart. In it, he details how the effect of Wal-Mart consumerism creates a sense of "entitlement" for the public. In my opinion this is a huge issue, but it takes a back seat in Dickers writing where he prefers to focus on the political and economic cloat wielded by the largest private employer, the largest retailer, the largest grocery store, and the largest corporation in the world.

At the heart of Dickers arguments, which are replete with factual data, references, and so forth, is that as Wal-Mart grows bigger and bigger our choices become fewer and fewer. Examples include numerous banned CDs books and even comedy albums (Sheryl Crow, Eminem, Jon Stewart, Eddie Murphy, etc).

There is lots of good background and insightful question-raising in the book and a total dearth of solutions, suggestions, or bad-mouthing. He just presents the issues, the facts, and the questions and leaves the follow-up to the reader.

14 August 2005

Ongoing Worship

In continuing my personal exercise of critical thinking about worship, I found myself covering the Old Testament laws again. This raised the question of whether we have been given New Testament laws concerning worship. Primarily this came on becausethe more I pondered it the more I realized that in our efforts to love and obey God we have somehow changed worship into a legal system of salvation. We have not recognized the new covenant as a covenant of forgiveness enabling us to obey God's eternal law of love. The new covenant is not anew law, but rather a release from the penalty of God's eternal law.

We know that God's eternal law was first expressed in the old covenant (the ten commandments) and ultimately revealed in the sacrificial life of Jesus Christ. The detailed laws of worship are far from an arbitrary test of faith. On the contrary, every holy day, every form of sacrifice, and every ordinance of the priesthood related in some way to the person and work of Jesus Christ.

In the Old Testament, willingly obeying God's why, how, when, and where of worship was a means to honor Him as the Holy God. They were trusting in His mercy and forgiveness. Before the cross, fellowship with God was only possible through the worship that God had commanded. In the Old Testament, worship taught that we must approach God on His terms if we are to be acceptable to Him. The New Testament equivalent is not a new set of laws of worship, but rather the fulfillment of the symbolism of the Old Testament laws of worship. We must always approach God on His terms, by surrendering our lives to Christ and trusting and depending upon His forgiveness. There is only one way to God and that is through the atoning blood of our Lord Jesus. Prior to the cross, this was an exercise of worship both in form and function. When Christ gave His life for us, he freed us from the exercise of worship as a form and instead allows us to accept the function solely by faith. Old Testament worship was never intended to be an end in itself, but the expression of complete trust and dependence in God. So to, the sacraments we observe even today are not an end in themselves, but rather an avenue to extend our worship.

The tithe is a good example of the difference between the covenant of law and the covenant of forgiveness. In the Old Testament we were commanded to give one tenth of all our increase to God. Understandably this had a practical side, but it also taught a deeper truth. Everything we have not only comes from God, but also belongs to Him. In the New Testament we are not commanded to give a specific tithe, but rather are exhorted to be a cheerful, and thoughtful giver. We give not one tenth, but everything to God. Our homes, our cars, our T.V's, belong to God and must be used in His service. It was love that motivated the early Christians to purposefully put aside money each week to send to the destitute Christians in Judea. We have taken this example of love and turned it into a "law" of giving every first day of the week. Actually, the people were to put aside the money "that there be no gatherings" when Paul came (I Cor. 16:2). No gatherings! Can you see how easily the intents can be perverted by ignorance and greed? The central idea is that giving should be purposeful, and not a last minute scrounging around. It is worth noting in that same passage that there are several indicators that this collection was a special response to a great need, and not part of the regular worship. When we consider the intent of these admonitions, should we condemn those who pass the collection plate on Wednesday in order to buy food for a hungry family of Christians? Does God really care if we pass the plate on Sunday instead of collecting resources outside the building after the assembly?

This is but one of many examples where searching for a law of worship will soon leave us missing the intent of salvation and worship...a wonderful, lasting relationship with God our Father.

11 August 2005

I Want to be Brave

Had a physical exam today and it was more encouraging than anything else. Sometimes you just need to hear someone else give you some positive words to make the road seem less long.

In the gym, working, in the gym, working, sleeping, repeat. It's always monotonous, sometimes lonely, but even still I can't keep this huge grin off my face. When everyone else is zoning into their step-machines and treadmills, I can't seem to stop dancing on the cross-trainer. These poor people at my gym must think I'm bonkers.

Sometimes, I catch a glimpse of my own perma-smile in the mirror as I'm grooving along and I freak myself out.

One song in particular (one of the few that aren't Planetshakers or Hillsong is by Nichole Nordeman entitled Brave. It's definitely a great anthem for me.

The gate is wide
The road is paved in moderation
The crowd is kind and quick to pull you in
Welcome to the middle ground
You're safe and sound and
Until now it's where I've been

'Cause it's been fear that ties me down to everything
But it's been love, Your love, that cuts the strings

So long, status quo
I think I've just let go
You make me wanna be brave

The way it always was
It's no longer good enough
You make me wanna be brave

Why did I take this vow of compromise?
Why did I try to keep it all inside?

I've never known a fire that didn't begin with a flame
And every storm will start with just a drop of rain
But if You believe in me
That changes everything
So long, I'm gone

BTW, here's a shout out to Corinne. Thanks for being amazing! I miss your biscuits.

10 August 2005

Forgotten Post: Quote of the Trip

This morning I was archiving some files and I came across a clip from my last outing with my good friend Robin. It is from him that I coined the Quote of the Trip for that particular outing.

I can't believe I woke up drunk.

This should in no way be a reflection on me, as I was actually quite fine. Rather, it's meant to celebrate exactly how much fun Robin had on this particular trip.

08 August 2005

Information Age, yea right.

It's common knowledge that I'm big on personal privacy. And it's not like I don't have good reasons to be paranoid. Unfortunately give a little privacy scare to the general public and they go bum-over-teakettle with rules, regulations, and restrictions.

How are we expected to get anything done in an era when you can't believe someone is who they say they are, you can't accept any proof from them directly, and third parties who could verify information refuse because of privacy concerns.

We are playing right into the hands of the credit bureas (a plague on all their houses!) with this moronic rigamarole. Honestly! It makes you start to appreciate the perspective of those tree-hugging wack-jobs who insist we all have to start living off the grid.

As someone who makes a living building technology purely to manage the flows of information, my thoughts over the last few days have been downright heretical against my industry. Then again, since a majority of the people in my industry are incompetent stooges, that's not the most uncommon of stances for me to take, now is it?

Enough ranting...happy thoughts. Happy thoughts...

02 August 2005

Medicaid for Millions

Sometimes trying to find something the government is getting right feels harder than it should be. Then out of nowhere some blokes in Congress unlock the Medicaid doors and you realize the power of good government.

For those not in the loop, recent changes in eligibility restrictions on Medicaid are making it possible so that thousands of families who can't afford health insurance are finally able to receive care with federal funding.

This is great news for us as a country! It shows that we don't have to have a completely socialistic movement to make progress evening out the standard of living.

On the flip-side, it is worth noting how once again WalMart (translation: evil, despicable, parasitic corporation responsible for the deterioration of western civilization.) is at the forefront of employers who pay so extremely little and offer such outlandishly meager benefits. In USA Today the spokesman Dan Fogleman actually acknowledges that they are aware many of their employees are on Medicaid! He tries to spin it like their employees have a choice and are just being "cost-conscious". Of course, for the family to be eligible that means they are living below the poverty line! Their idea of fair wages is to pay people wages below the poverty line and provide such pitiful benefits that those families must turn to the government for health care.

Okay, I'm just going to say again how great it is that we are seeing enough governmental reform that the working class is finally getting the help they need. If I think about how much WalMart disgusts me, I might have to vomit.

01 August 2005

Oh Canada!

This weekend I was able to spend some much needed quality time with some great friends in lovely Vancouver, Canada. We partied hard, rested well, and ate some Amazing food. I'll have the picture sets put together soon so check back.

I also had the opportunity to check in with Mort and do some midnight bowling at the notorious Kenmore lanes. The lanes were all screwed up and wouldn't score properly and stuff, so we bailed.

Before I forget, I want to send out some mad props to me buddy Zac at Veritas Clothes.