Thursday, July 31, 2008

Christian To Christian Responsibility: Rebuking In Love

Timm (one of the contributors here) recently posted an article on Christian Reproof on his own blog called The Bench Stone. I found it to be encouraging and balanced in its brief handling of the issue and in its exhortation.

I would recommend you click the link below and read it. Here is a short sampling of what he wrote:

Even though we profess Christian love, we complain to anyone with a sympathetic ear about our brethren who offend us. Anyone, except the offender himself! Sadly, if you are like me, you will recall your own failures in talking about, rather than to, those who've offended you. These conversations violate the scriptural rule of speaking the truth only in a spirit of love. (Ephesians 4:15)

We rarely approach others with the intent of restoring them to the right path...

You can read more here.

Some questions:
-Do you agree with Timm's conclusion?
-Do you think correction has lost its cultural relevance? Afterall, we are an individualistic society that leans towards pluralism yeah?
-What do you think of his treatment concerning the Luke parable?
-Why is it so important to rebuke in love and not just rebuke?

Man Decapitated By Fellow Passenger On Bus

A man sleeping on a Greyhound bus as it rolled across the Canadian Prairies was killed and decapitated by his seatmate on Wednesday night, other passengers who were on the bus told media on Thursday.

[The attacker] calmly walks up to the front (of the bus) with the head in his hand and the knife and just calmly stares at us and drops the head right in front of us," Caton said.

"There was no rage in him ... It was just like he was a robot or something."

You can read more here.

Some questions:
-Why do you think people do things like this?
-Does this cause you to think less of God? If so, why?
-Why do you think evil is permitted?
-Why do you think no one helped the victim?

Tweaking Microsoft Vista

In my ever-ongoing quest to get the leanest operating system so I can utilize all of my resources for video editing, I ran across this article on downloads that allow you to customize Vista and tweak to your hearts content. I thought I would pass it along and hopefully it will be of benefit to those of you who have moved on (however grudgingly) from XP.

Here are a few of the downloads:

Vista Smoker Pro

If you're looking to juice up Vista's performance, give this tool a try. It's designed to help you optimize the way that Vista runs, from memory to hard disk operations to the basic interface.


As its name implies, Stardock's TweakVista lets you alter and fine-tune Vista in countless ways. A blessedly simple and well-designed interface makes tweaking easy. You can see what programs run at startup, how much RAM each currently running program uses, and what Vista security parameters are now in force. One particularly useful feature is the Services module, which enables you to switch various Vista services on or off...


What's the biggest annoyance that Windows Vista have to deal with? Hands-down, it's User Account Control (UAC), which nags at you to enter a password or click OK every time you make certain changes or perform certain actions.

Amnesty Generator

The Web contains are thousands of widgets and gadgets, but regrettably the vast majority of them won't work in the Sidebar. But Mesa Dynamics' free Amnesty Generator fixes that state of affairs. The program lets you convert almost any online widget or gadget to a Vista-compatible gadget that you can then run on the Sidebar.

Feeds Plus

Fans of the RSS blog reader built into Internet Explorer 7 need this program. It enables you to read all of your feeds from a single location, instead of having to read one feed at a time. This is especially useful for people like me who subscribe to dozens of feeds.

You can find more (and download) here.

Some questions:
-Do you use Vista? If so, what version?
-Why did you switch to Vista?
-Are you considering going to Mac? If so, why?
-Do you think Microsoft is going downhill?

Wednesday, July 30, 2008

A Cure For Alzheimer's?

A new drug halts the devastating progress of Alzheimer’s disease, say British scientists.

It is the first time medication has been developed to target the ‘tangles’ in the brain that destroy nerve cells, leading to deteriorating memory.

The drug helps to disrupt this process, preventing the formation of new tangles and loosening those already created.

Last night the findings were hailed as the biggest breakthrough in the battle against Alzheimer’s since 1907.

You can read more here.

Some questions:
-Did you realize Alzeimer's is the sixth leading cause of death?
-Why do you think we are prone to disease?
-Do you think this "breakthrough" will amount to anything? What about this one?
-Do you have any loved ones coping with Alzeimer's? Will you tell their doctor about this medication?

I Follow Teen Pop, I Follow Adult Boomer... Is Worship Divided?

Below is an excerpt of an interview with J. I. Packer from Modern Reformation on The State of Evangelism.

Shane Rosenthal: What do you think about a niche marketing approach that has by virtue of the different worship styles--teen pop, alternative, and adult boomer--created generational segregation?

J. I. Packer: We have separated the ages, very much to the loss of each age. In the New Testament, the Christian church is an all-age community, and in real life the experience of the family to look no further should convince us that the interaction of the ages is enriching. The principle is that generations should be mixed up in the church for the glory of God. That doesn't mean we shouldn't disciple groups of people of the same age or the same sex separately from time to time. That's a good thing to do. But for the most part...

You can read the rest at Between Two Worlds here.
You can read the original, complete interview here. (you must sign up for a free subscription)

Some questions:
-Do you think worship should be all inclusive?
-Does having seperate worship services negatively impact the body?
-Is there a positive (when it comes to the local body of believers) for having seperate worship styles for different tastes?
-What is the purpose of corporate worship?
-Who is worship intended to cater to?

Monday, July 28, 2008

Less Abortions Or No Abortions?

Denny Burk picked up on a discussion on Al Mohler's radio program between Tony Campolo and Russell Moore. Part of the transcript is below.

Moore: What would you say to someone that would argue as I would that getting together with abortion rights supporters and saying let’s reduce the number of abortions is something like a previous generation getting together with white supremacists and saying let’s find a way to reduce the number of lynchings. Don’t you kind of almost provide a smokescreen . . .

Campolo: Wait a minute. That was a very inflammatory way of stating the issue . . .

Moore: Not if unborn children are actually children . . .

Campolo: Would you let me respond? . . .

Even though Campolo is put off by the comparison to white supremacists, Moore’s analogy is entirely appropriate. Just as black Americans are persons created in God’s image whose lives should be protected in law against lynchings, so the unborn are persons whose lives should be protected in law against abortion.

You can read the rest here.
The audio can be heard here.

Some questions:
-Where do you stand on the issue of abortion?
-When does life qualify as human life?
-Do you think Moore's point is valid?
-Should the father have equal say in abortions concerning their unborn child?
-If abortion was outlawed, what would be the negative effects of such a ruling?

Saturday, July 26, 2008

Man Walked On The Moon, Aliens Walked On Earth

FORMER NASA astronaut and moon-walker Dr Edgar Mitchell - a veteran of the Apollo 14 mission - has stunningly claimed aliens exist.

And he says extra-terrestrials have visited Earth on several occasions - but the alien contact has been repeatedly covered up by governments for six decades.

Dr Mitchell, 77, said during a radio interview that sources at the space agency who had had contact with aliens described the beings as 'little people who look strange to us.'

He said supposedly real-life ET's were similar to the traditional image of a small frame, large eyes and head.

Chillingly, he claimed our technology is "not nearly as sophisticated" as theirs and "had they been hostile", he warned "we would be been gone by now".

You can read more here.
You can listen to the audio here.

Some questions:
-Do you believe in intelligent alien life?
-Would such a belief contradict the Bible?
-Do you believe the statements Dr. Mitchell made or do you believe Nasa?
-Do you think our government lies to us? Why?

Friday, July 25, 2008

Destination Psych Ward

I'm not crazy, doctor. There really is a cat in my wall.

A Brooklyn man found himself locked up in a loony bin for four days after he smashed down walls in three apartments trying to rescue a fugitive feline.

Muth couldn't catch Rumi from that hole either, so he broke into a third apartment, and again started smashing walls.

Steiner [the superintendent] had as much success coaxing Muth out as Muth did with Rumi.

So the super called cops - who shipped Muth to a local psych ward.

Rumi remained in the catacombs of the condo - a former church. And the shrinks decided Muth was suffering from bats in his belfry.

The hospital records say he had a "bizarre delusion [he] was trying to save a cat of his friend," The Brooklyn Paper reported.

You can read more here.

Some questions:
-Do you think a cat was worth it?
-Should this man do what most Americans believe they are entitled to do: sue?
-Do you think we have lost trust in our fellow man (would he have been trusted back in the 1930's)?
-Should the Brooklyn Paper apologize?
-What do you think about Muth's final statement in the link above?

Wednesday, July 23, 2008

"Hug A Fatty" Campaign

Health Secretary Alan Johnson today called for an end to stigmatising the obese.

The Cabinet minister warned that 'vilifying' fat people will not make them lose weight or solve Britain's obesity 'epidemic'.

Instead, Mr Johnson proposed a national campaign tackling unhealthy lifestyles.

His comments come only a week after David Cameron said the overweight had only themselves to blame and they must take personal responsibility for their condition.

You can read more here.

Some questions:
-Do you find this offensive?
-If you are overweight, how does this sit with you?
-What do you think about David Cameron's statement in the quote above?
-Do you think the title "Hug a Fatty" "present[s] the message more intelligently"?
-Is obesity an epidemic? Is it evolution? Is it a consequence of our technological, industrial and scientific gains?

Email: What Do You Use?

I have been using gmail since it was first released via invitation only back in 2004. I still keep my Hotmail account just for junk mailings (if I need to sign up for something). However, I am extremely pleased with gmail and its philosphy that you do not have to throw away anything ever nor do you have to file things away- just search for it. This is a great tool. If you need to review an email with a key code in it or download link, just type something in the search box that was in the email and there it is. It also narrows down email addresses as you type them in (or the name associated with them) in the address field. Once you see a list of names appear, just choose the one you want- no more address book or memorizing email addresses. On top of that you have storage galore and google talk built right in. Did I mention that their spam filter is phenomenal? I don't remember the last time I had spam slip through into my inbox.

In addition to email, your google account also opens up to you the ability to utilize google calendar, google docs, and a plethora of other services.

There are also "add ons" that can turn your gmail account into a storage space for files and such. There is even one that utilizes it to run a web based operating system.

So, I say all that to ask this: who is your email client and why?

Tuesday, July 22, 2008

The Dark Knight impressions

If you've seen The Dark Knight, here's your spot to carry on about it. A groundrule - no spoilers. Anyhow, here's what I liked and disliked:


  • Heath Ledger - hands down the best on-screen villian I've ever seen in a comicbook movie.
  • Maggie Gyllenhal takes over as Rachel Dawes. Much, much better than watching Joey Potter try to play a grown woman.
  • The story. With Chris Nolan at the helm, this is expected.
  • I don't really have any...

Sawdust Utilized As Biofuel?

A wider of range of plant material could be turned into biofuels thanks to a breakthrough that converts plant molecules called lignin into liquid hydrocarbons.
The reaction reliably and efficiently turns the lignin in waste products such as sawdust into the chemical precursors of ethanol and biodiesel.

"For the first time, we have produced alkanes, the main component of gasoline and diesel, from lignin, and biomethanol becomes available," says Yan.

Impressively, the researchers' practical yields approached those theoretical ideals. They produced monomer yields of 45 wt% and dimer yields of 12 wt% – about twice what has previously been achieved.

You can read more here.

Some questions:
-Do you think this method will prove to be a beneficial alternative to other biofuels as well as oil?
-Why do you think it is so difficult to start production on an alternative fuel source that will be renewable and cheaper than current fuels?
-Do you think it necessary to be looking for alternative fuels?
-Is a "Mr. Fusion" only reserved for the movies or could it be real someday?

Friday, July 18, 2008

Do The Ends Justify The Means?

A London woman is carrying Great Britain's first baby guaranteed to be free of inherited breast cancer, but she had to eliminate several of her other embryonic offspring to do so.

Doctors used pre-implantation genetic diagnosis (PGD), a controversial screening method, to determine which of the 11 embryos created by means of in vitro fertilization (IVF) had the gene that would have resulted in a female child having a 50 to 85 percent chance of developing breast cancer, according to The Times of London.

Six of the embryos tested positive for the gene and were rejected. Two embryos without the gene were implanted, producing a pregnancy of 14 weeks as of June 29. Two others were frozen, The Times reported.

The 27-year-old mother, who desires to remain anonymous, and her 28-year-old husband are fertile, but they chose IVF and PGD because of the prevalence of breast cancer on one side of the family. The husband had tested positive for the gene, known as BRCA-1.

You can read more here.

Some questions:
-Are embryos human?
-Morally is there anything wrong with what was done? Legally?
-What constitutes a human being?
-Should we be able to pick and choose our children?
-Is this justifiable in some scenarios but not others?
-If you were presented with this option (due to genetical tendencies) would you do it?
-Would you do this if no embroyos were harmed or killed?

WHAT? Why? Local Access TV Is All I Can Say

Now I see a little more clearly why the cussing preacher who thinks he is God (readily available on youtube but I am not linking to it) made it on television.

*** Be warned: there is censored nudity in the video above. ***

Gas Prices Rise & Consciences Drop

Some U.S. motorists sick of getting clobbered at the pump seem willing to do just about anything for free fuel, from giving up the right to name their children to stealing from day-care centers to donating blood.

In Orlando, Florida, David Partin pledged to name his son after local radio hosts to win a $100 gas card as part of a contest. Partin will collect the card in December, when his son is born, if he can produce a birth certificate proving the baby is named Dixon Willoughby Partin, after the hosts.

"(His wife said) this is his problem to explain when the child is older," Greg Stevens, WHTQ-FM program director told Reuters.

In Mesquite, Texas, thieves drained $100 worth of gasoline from buses used by the Higher Ground Church day-care center and have hit four or five other church center fleets in the area.

You can read more here.

Some questions:
-Why is theivery a more justifiable option when hard times hit? (Does this indicate a lack of trust in the promises of God?)
-Would you allow someone else to name your firstborn for gas? Money? Something else?
-Is recieving free gas an incentive/motivator for immoral behavior?
-Do these stories (plus the ones in the link) give any indication as to the moral state of our nation?
-Today it is gasoline, what will it be 20 years from now?

Motorcycle Etiquette

I don't really understand this, but it kind of fascinates me. I bought my bike back in November of last year and ever since a strange thing occurs. I don't really know what it is called or how it got started but it is intriguing none-the-less. When you are riding your motorcycle and you see another motorcycle you are to signal to them that you acknowledge they are riding a bike and they signal back to you that they are doing the same. At least that is what I think we are doing. I find that if you do not do this, it is frowned upon by all who have and have had motorcycles. I would say it is a wave, but its not. Basically you extend your left hand out and down at about a 45 degree angle from your body and curl in all of your fingers save for the index. It is to remain fully extended. If you are passing another motorcyclist, you are to take your left hand and drop it as far down on your right hand side and again, curl your fingers up into a fist leaving only the index finger extended.

If anybody who has knowledge concerning this phenomenon would care to comment (or anybody who would like to venture a guess) feel free. It is kind of like one of those things that have been a "family" tradion for so long, nobody remembers why it is done but everybody in the family does it. You don't see people in cars doing this or truckers doing this sort of thing... just a funny observation I thought I would share.

Thursday, July 17, 2008

Is Adultery A Private Sin Or Subject To Church Discipline?

John Divito points out a case in Dallas in his post here, in which a church member involved in an adulterous relationship sought to avoid Matthew 18 church discipline by “quitting the church” so that the church could not appropriately confront him over his “private sins.” The man and mistress in question have sued the church. His case has been dismissed twice and is currently on appeal. Go over to John’s and read the articles, especially the church’s release on the matter...

You can read more on this at The Silent Holocron.

Some questions:
-Does scripture support the idea that some sins are private?
-Why is biblical church discipline neglected? Is it an outdated practice that served its purpose ages ago?
-Is there anything that would ever cause you to sue your church?
-Is keeping the name of Christ's church unstained by your hands more valuable than retribution for suffering wrong at her hands?
-What are your thoughts on the issue as it pertains to the article linked to above?

Triskelos: A Blog Upon Which To Think

I have added to my list of blogs on the sidebar a blog that is indeed a blog upon which to think. There are varying viewpoints and differences of opinion when it comes to God, the infallibiltiy of scripture, the discussion concerning creation/evolution, politics, philosphy and other issues. The interaction there is respectful and they attempt to lay out the issues as balanced as possible hence the differing of opinions and choice of authors.

I would recommend that you take a look and see how discussions are handled and what topics are covered as they will indeed cause you to think. On the other hand, if you are easily swayed in your thinking and not rooted firmly in what you believe, you may want to proceed with caution as some views are not necessarily orthodox when it comes to issues concerning Christianity and the God of the Bible.

Here is what they have in their profile:
Triskelion (or Triskelos, from Greek τρισκελής‚ meaning "three-legged") is a symbol consisting of three interlocked spirals, or any similar symbol with three protrusions. To us, the Triskelos represents the equal and balanced approach of looking at any issue aesthetically, morally, and empirically. Herein, our contributors discuss whatever they find inspiring, or iritating, and seek to uncover the secret behind it.

You can check out Triskelos here.

Wednesday, July 16, 2008

Movie Rentals & Purchases Via The Playstation Store

I was reading through the user agreement for the new patch for the Playstation 3 and saw a section about three fourths of the way through that discussed movie rentals and purchases in both standard definition and high definition. After reading through it and finding nothing questionable I turned on the playstation and downloaded the new update. The store now has a video section where you can rent or buy movies and tv shows both current and classic by the season. The prices are no different than going to blockbuster. I am unsure what rights you have if your hard drive crashes or you lose your purchased content. It was not spelled out in the user agreement if you could download again by showing proof of purchase or if it was just your loss.

Regardless, if the content selection continues to grow I don't know if I see a reason to visit Blockbuster anytime soon (I rent maybe once a month). And those who own xbox 360's have been given the ability to download Netflix rentals, there may not be much of a future for walk-in movie rental stores.

Also, if anybody is considering moving up to BluRay, I would urge you to consider a Playstation 3. I bought mine so I could watch my high definition video that I filmed, but after buying it, I realized it was also useful as a media reciever by setting up a media server on my computer (check a box in windows media player) and for watching bluray movies, listening to music through my home theatre via mp3 and wma's, surfing the web on the tv, video conferencing with anybody else who owns one (all of these things are free by the way) and if you are into games, you can also play those on it.

Tuesday, July 15, 2008

What Constitutes Worship Music Worthy Of Congregational Singing?

Thabiti Anyabwile over on Pure Church blog has been invited to speak at Worship God '08. He asks a pertinent question: What songs should be sung in worship to God?

He asks if these are "worthy". Are they?

You can check out Thabiti's thoughts and comments here.

Some questions:
-What dictates whether a song should be sung in corporate worship?
-Is it okay to utilize popular music in the culture and substitute lyrics of our choosing? Does this infringe upon the artist's rights? Is it illegal without acquiring performance licenses and permission to change lyrics?
-If what is displayed above breaks the law, do you think that it pleses God?
-Should there be criteria that songs must meet to be sung in corporate worship? If so, what?
-What is the goal of corporate worship as it relates to singing?

Water Purification: Particle-Exclusion Phenomenon

An entirely new way of purifying water has been discovered by scientists in the US. The technique is based on the discovery that water-attracting materials seem to repel impurities, leaving a layer of pure water near their surface.

In 2003, Gerald Pollack and his colleagues at the University of Washington, Seattle, discovered a process known as the "particle-exclusion phenomenon".

They found that particles dissolved in water naturally move away from a hydrophilic, or water-loving, surface, leaving pure water behind.

What was really surprising was quite how far the particles would move – up to several tenths of a millimetre. This is much further than predicted by conventional theories.

The article goes on to state that this process can remove 97% of man-made latex contaminants and between 70-90% of clay and soil. It does this through a process of separating the pure water from the contaminated water by utilizing two pipes: one that syphons near the hydrophilic surface while the other syphons from the center. The drawback is that it currenlty only produces 15 milliliters per hour, but Pollack thinks this bottle neck can be overcome by combining thousands of these hydrophilic tubes together.

You can read more here.

Some questions:
-Do you see potential in this method?
-Could this technology work in deveoloping countries to produce cheap, clean water?
-What do you see as the drawbacks?
-Do you think that we take water for granted?
-Could this technology be used for Mars settlements?

Parent's Beware: A Professor's Fantasies Made Known

As a parent you help your child along through school to eventually leave off for college and earn a degree that is backed up by four years of learning pertinent information for their chosen field in hopes that they are able to make a differenc in their chosen field. Well, any parent who has a female child at University of Texas San Antonio may have some added worries to tag onto the above scenario. A professor has been caught sending sexually explicit emails to another collegue concerning the girls that take his classes. Ronald Ayers, who is 60 years old and professor of economics did not have any qualms boasting about his future plans with female students to one of his collegues. In addition to that, he was also frequenting porn sites from his office computer on campus.

When University of Texas at San Antonio officials learned that Ayers was surfing porn sites from his office, he was fired last year. Ayers appealed that decision and had his dismissal overturned by a faculty tribunal. His case is scheduled to be heard later this month by the university's Board of Regents, which will decide on the fate of Ayers, who is currently on paid administrative leave.

You can read more here.
A link to his defunct blog can be found here.

Some questions:
-In your opinion, what made him think correspondence such as this was okay?
-Is this the type of person you want teaching your children?
-Knowing that there are people like this in the world, how do you propose that teach your children about the dangers of such men (or women)?
-Why would his dismissal be overturned and he be reinstated given the evidence against him? Is it against UTSA policy to look at pornography on campus?
-How do they justify giving him paid leave?
-Is porn a bigger problem than we like to think?

Monday, July 14, 2008

iPhone Mania

Can someone please explain to me the mass hysteria surrounding the iPhone? Why would anyone pay 200+ USD for a phone?

I can tell you one thing, Apple sure knows how to market themselves.

Thursday, July 10, 2008

Rev. Jesse Jackson Wants To Make Obama A Eunuch

“My appeal was for the moral content of his message to not only deal with the personal and moral responsibility of black males, but to deal with the collective moral responsibility of government and the public policy which would be a corrective action for the lack of good choices that often led to their irresponsibility.”

Jackson was speaking to a fellow guest at the time about Obama’s speeches in black churches and his support for faith-based charities. Jackson added before going live, “I want to cut his nuts off.”
“I have great passion for this campaign and traveled across the country … arguing the case for the campaign,” Jackson said. “And this thing I said in a hot-mic statement that’s interpreted as a distraction, I offer apology for that. I don’t want harm or hurt to come to this campaign.”

You can read more here and here.

Some questions:
-Is an apology enough?
-Should the same standard he held for Don Imus be enforced concerning him?
-What is Jesse Jackson a reverend of?
-Why do you think Jesse Jackson felt "okay" saying this type of comment about another person?
-Are we all subject to sin nature and in need of forgiveness? If so how many times should we forgive?
-Is there a double standard at work here? Where is the outcry?

Tuesday, July 8, 2008

A Kidney From The Skinny Foreigner For $2,000 Please

Surgeons, lawyers and ethicists from 78 countries have said "no" to transplant tourism – the practice of treating rich westerners with "donated" organs from poorer countries.
Through a global declaration, they are calling on governments to ban transplants of kidneys and other organs taken from vulnerable people – some of whom are forced by poverty into selling organs.

You can read more here.
I have touched on this subject in the past; you can read on it here.

Some questions:
-Ethically is it wrong to sell one of your own organs for money?
-Do you think it is wrong for a "rich" person to give thousands of dollars to someone who lives in utter poverty for one of their organs?
-If your loved one was dying due to kidney failure and you knew that you could get a kydney in time and relatively cheap in a third world country, would you do it?
-Do you think such a ban will stop the problem or just force it underground?

Monday, July 7, 2008

Caring For Our Own: An American Icon

Joseph Patrick Dwyer, 31, died of an apparent overdose in an ambulance on the way to the hospital. After breaking down the door to Dwyer's home, officers found him surrounded by empty cans of aerosol-gas dusters and prescription pills.

Dwyer, a private first-class medic, became an image of the Iraq war after a picture showing him carrying an injured Iraqi boy away from a fire fight ran on the front page of several newspapers in 2003, just after the invasion of Iraq by coalition forces.

"He was just never the same when he came back, because of all the things he saw," Matina Dwyer said. "He tried to seek treatment, but it didn't work."

You can read more here.

Some questions:
-Is this the government's fault? Our society's? His?
-Should military who served in wars have more mental care available to them?
-Is he responsible for his own death or do others share in the blame?
-Is he a symbol of America in more ways than one?

Rules of the Royal Throne Room

I'll go ahead and tell you right off the bat that this is potty humor. Literally. If this brand of humor offends you, turn the radio dial to the right. I just feel the need to inform all of you, mainly the men, of transgressions made in that most sacred of places - the public restroom. While this will generally only cover the work "office", it can (and in my opinion should) apply to other public halls of semi-indecency.

For starters, at no time in that room should there ever be any handshaking. Period. For that matter, there shall not be any rumpshaking, either. The only shaking that should be occurring in there should happen once - no double-clicking the mouse.

Next I'd like to address conversations. When you go to salute the loo, there is to never be eye contact with the person next to you. This is most important to you remember if you are a tall people - us hobbits aren't too sure what you're looking at. Furthermore, the newest office joke or a hot piece of gossip is not something that I need to hear when I'm trying to ring the Cheerio. If you feel chatty, go to the women's lavoratory. And for crying out loud, none of this "man that water's cold!" business. No standing six feet away either - it's gross and just makes you look like a tool.

Taking the conversation piece one step further, when you're on the royal throne doing your duty for queen and country, don't talk to me. It's not a nasty thing, but more self preservation. You see, my inner child is only 12 and not growing up any time soon. If we're mired in a deep conversation while one of us is going to brown town and there is a main shuttle bay decompression, I'm not going to be able to talk - I'm going to be quietly, but literally figuratively, laughing my butt off. All together now - fart is funny.

Finally, and this may only apply to certain workplaces where Crackberries are prevalent, but I don't need to here the clickety-clacking of you typing away an email, text, making an appt, or whatever else you would be doing on the thing while in those hallowed halls. I certainly don't need to hear you discussing TPS reports or the latest stock tips. It is a land of peace and tranquility - don't pollute it.

Note: I'm still in holiday mode, so enjoy this old piece of gold from my blog.

Friday, July 4, 2008

Happy Independence Day

Enjoy the 4th my fellow Americans!
Here is a question for you: Why do we celebrate Independence Day on July 4th?

Thursday, July 3, 2008

Who Likes Free Music?

I think I may have posted on this a while back when it was only an idea, but it has now come to fruition. Derek Webb, solo artist and former member of Caedmon's Call came up with the idea and implemented it a while back by giving away a free album as a download if you give him some of your information (email, zip code and three email addresses of friends). He used that information to find fan bases so he could plan his venues based on known fans who would come and support him. So basically he traded his music knowing that giving that away to his listener base would pay off at his shows; plus it allowed for others who would not spend the money to sample his music to do so risk free and he could gain another potential fan.

Since that time he has made a website and opened it up to other artists to share their work in the same way. He also gives you the choice to purchase the music at a price you set if you are not comfortable giving him (or the artist) your information.

So go check it out (you can listen to every song on the site for free to see if you are interested in it and if it would appeal to your friends).

The site is called NoiseTrade.

Wednesday, July 2, 2008

A Forward I Recieved

The below is an email forward that was sent to me.

... As you watch the flooding in the Midwest? Have you noticed that there are no farmers running around with stolen plasma TVs or holding stolen liquor over their heads.
There's no looting or yelling
'Where's Bush?',
'Where's FEMA?,
Where's my check?', or
'Why isn't the Gov't out here saving me and my farm?'

Likewise, I've also noticed there are no reports of any other country
coming to help or sending aid.

And this one---Where are all of the Hollywood celebrities holding telethons asking for help in restoring Iowa and helping the folks affected by the floods?

Where is all the media asking the tough questions about why the federal government hasn't solved the problem? Asking where the FEMA trucks (and trailers) are?

Why isn't the Federal Government relocating Iowa people to free hotels in Chicago?

When will Spike Lee say that the Federal Government blew up the levees that failed in Des Moines?

Where are Sean Penn and the Dixie Chicks?

Where are all the looters stealing high-end tennis shoes and big screen television sets?

When will we hear Governor Chet Culver say that he wants to rebuild a 'vanilla' Iowa, because that's the way God wants it?

Where are all of the gangs taking law into their own hands?

Where is the hysterical 24/7 media coverage complete with reports of cannibalism?

Where are the people (read liberals, progressives and other way out left wingers) declaring that George Bush hates white, rural people?

Where are the debit cards for Iowans?

How come in 2 weeks, you will never hear about the Iowa flooding ever again?

Because these people are responsible and will take care of themselves . . . like the others need to learn to do. These are the Americans who understand that help begins at home. God bless them and let's help them. They are true Americans!

Shocking contrast, isn't it?!?!?!
Tell it like it is, pass this on!

I do not agree with the implication of this email nor do I see a need to draw dividing lines based on race, I do however find intriguing the heart of the issue brought up by the email.

Some questions:
-How should we respond to such emails?
-Why is race made to be a dividing line?
-Does scripture speak to race? In what ways?
-Why do you think this tragedy was/is being handled differently than the aftermath of hurrican Katrina?


DENVER - Mayor John Hickenlooper's annual State of the City address may get more attention for what wasn't included than what was.
At the start of the event Tuesday morning, City Council President Michael Hancock introduced singer Rene Marie to perform the national anthem.
Instead, she performed the song "Lift Ev'ry Voice and Sing," which is also known as the "black national anthem."
When she finished, the audience responded with mild applause. The national anthem was never performed.

She says she wanted to express her love of her country by mixing the lyrics of "Lift Ev'ry Voice and Sing" with the melody of the "Star-Spangled Banner."
"When I decided to sing my version, what was going on in my head was: 'I want to express how I feel about living in the United States, as a black woman, as a black person,'" said Marie.

You can read more here.

Some questions:
-Does culture trump nationalism? Does it even matter?
-Is the Star Spangled Banner (national anthem) outdated or culture specific?
-Is this unpatriotic?
-If you asked someone to sing the national anthem and they sang something other than, how would you react?
-Is what she did wrong?