Wednesday, August 30, 2006



Blessed are the Geeks, for they shall internet the earth.

Tuesday, August 29, 2006


Ok so I've been watching the various anniversary documentaries and such about Hurricane Katrina. The one thing that hits me is that even a year later with 20/20 hind sight the tough decisions are not being made in the recovery.

Why are we (taxpayers) paying billions of dollars rebuilding levees and pumps for the lowest parts of New Orleans? Why not relocate those neighborhoods to higher ground? In '93 when the Mississippi flooded the government bought out many people and forced them to move to higher ground instead of letting them rebuild so that the next flood would wipe them out again. In at least one case an entire town was relocated. To me this is just common sense.

To make matters worse, the scientists are saying that the flooding and surge was worse because of the levee system. Because of the levees the natural processes that built the land on which New Orleans and much of southern Louisiana are built on are no longer allowed to work. As a result much of the natural protections against hurricanes including the wetlands and barrier islands are no longer being built and are being lost at a great rate.

I know what I'm saying is not politically correct because the lowest neighborhoods are the poorest and the most racially segregated, but it needs to be done. Turn those areas into parkland and let the river flood the area. Overtime they will naturally be built back up to sea level.

My other observation revolves around the people that are decrying the amount of time that it took for the Federal government to come in and provide relief. I think more so the responsibility was on the local and state officials. Why were hundreds of busses not used to evacuate poor and immobile people to safety instead of having them sit unused until they were flooded out? Why were the shelters like the Superdome not stocked with supplies and emergency generators capable of running life safety systems (include air conditioning)? What happened to personal responsibility?

Sunday, August 27, 2006

Ball of Confusion

I think the subject is a good synopsis of what's going on in my head right now. Today I ended up listening to a friend tell me about how she was going to ask a guy out. This kind of thing isn't abnormal for me as I listen to a lot of friends about relationships, but unfortunately this was one friend that I would rather have been asking out. I guess I've had plenty of time and just blew it, but it still stings a bit.

Sometimes I just sit and ponder all of my relationships and look at what worked and what didn't. It sometimes makes me think that it isn't worth the time, effort and pain. Yet at the same time it seems that I am wired to seek out love no matter what the cost because I seem to crave being in relationship.

It seems that I'm waiting in line for my turn. When will it be my turn?

Friday, August 25, 2006


Trumpeters everywhere have lost a great mentor. We'll miss you Maynard. Read about his career here.

Wednesday, August 23, 2006

I Feel Old...

According to a Beloit College study the incoming college Freshman class grew up after the Soviet Union, only knew one Germany and to them Google has always been a verb. You can read their whole list here.

I mean back in the good old days blue versus red states meant the US versus the Soviet Union...

Monday, August 21, 2006

Jazz Band

Ok so on a whim I decided that I needed a challenge this fall. I haven't played anything outside of church music in almost 4 years. I signed up for the local community college's Jazz Band. Tonight was the first rehearsal. Ouch I am SO out of shape when it comes to range. My chops are like jello right now.

What's really interesting is that two of the trumpeters in the band are former adjudicators from my high school days in solo and ensemble contest. One actually remembered me which I'm a bit scared of since he always ripped my solos. Myself and one other student are the only ones that are not Jazz gurus in the trumpet section. We were looking at each other in awe of the others. I feel like a little Freshman again like high school looking at the almighty senior trumpet gods. I did find out my senior year that they're not gods, they're just older, but don't tell that to any freshmen.

To all my music major/degree friends out there. Any help on basic theory websites or basic improv would be greatly appreciated.

Saturday, August 19, 2006

Lyrical Thought #26

Smell the Color 9
Chris Rice

I would take no for an answer,
Just to know I heard you speak,
And I'm wondering why I've never,
Seen the signs they claim they see,
A lotta special revelations,
Meant for everybody but me,
Maybe I don't truly know You,
or maybe I just simply believe...

Chorus: Cause I can sniff, I can see, and I can
count up pretty high; but these faculties
aren't getting me any closer to the sky,
but my heart of faith keeps poundin' so
I know I'm doin' fine but sometimes findin
you is just like tryin to smell the color nine.
Smell the color nine...

Now I've never felt the presence,
But I know You're always near,
And I've never heard the calling,
But somehow You've led me right here,
So I'm not lookin' for burnin' bushes,
Or some Divine graffiti to appear,
I'm just beggin You for Your wisdom,
And I believe You're puttin' some here...


(ah's and do's)

Chorus (repeat)

Nine's not a color...
and if even if it were you can't smell a color,no
that's my point exactly.

do do do do do do do (repeat)

Thursday, August 17, 2006


It's kinda strange to read the paper and see a guy you grew up with on the front page as a professional ball player. It's so fun to hear all of the buzz that Ryan has created in this community. Finally some good news has pushed the bad to page two.

Here's hoping he gets to stay up in the majors.

Wednesday, August 16, 2006

Congratulations Ryno!!!

My buddy made his Major League debut a great one. He pitched 8 innings of shut out ball and got his first career win against the Astros.

Go Ryno!

I just got word from my parents that my buddy Ryan O'Malley from grade school is going to be the starting pitcher today for the Chicago Cubs!!! He's been working hard in the minors for a few years and finally he gets his chance. Good luck Ryno!

Sunday, August 13, 2006

Lyrical Thought #25

Who Am I
Casting Crowns

Who am I?
That the Lord of all the earth,
Would care to know my name,
Would care to feel my hurt.
Who am I?
That the bright and morning star,
Would choose to light the way,
For my ever wandering heart.

Not because of who I am,
But because of what you've done.
Not because of what I've done,
But because of who you are.

I am a flower quickly fading,
Here today and gone tomorrow,
A wave tossed in the ocean,(ocean)
A vapor in the wind.
Still you hear me when I'm calling,
Lord, you catch me when I'm falling,
And you've told me who I am.
I am yours.
I am yours.

Who am I?
That the eyes that see my sin
Would look on me with love
And watch me rise again.
Who am I?
That the voice that calmed the sea,
Would call out through the rain,
And calm the storm in me.

Chorus 2x

I am yours.
I am yours.

Whom shall I fear?
Whom shall I fear?
'Cause I am yours.
I am yours.

Saturday, August 12, 2006


"On my income tax 1040 it says 'Check this box if you are blind.' I wanted to put a check mark about three inches away."

- Tom Lehrer

Thursday, August 10, 2006


For those of you not on facebook. As of Monday I thought that I was actually in a relationship. As of last night I'm afraid I'm facing yet another one week fizzler. I'm not sure what changed in her mind, but I got a very random spiel about not wanting to hurt me and that she wasn't sure now. Guess more than anything I'm asking for prayer hugs right now.

Tuesday, August 8, 2006


Well as some of you know, I took off Friday morning for Lancaster, KY for a weekend workshop on being a better Cantor at church. I drove straight through Friday and got to the workshop about 30 minutes before the first presentation. Along the way though I ran into the "World's Longest Yard Sale" on US 127 through KY. Apparently they have this annual sale along US 127 from somewhere in Alabama to Covington, KY. Needless to say traffic was a bit crazy as people were going from sale to sale along the highway.

The workshop itself was great. Both clinicians were excellent and I got a lot of good coaching and tips that should help me improving my singing. I also met a lot of great people there. One of which was a woman by the name of Anne. She may be blind, but the weekend showed me that in many ways God gives her more vision than any of us that can see. The joy that was always on her face was testament to the Holy Spirit that was just pouring out of her.

Well there is more news from my mini-vacation, but that will have to wait as I need to dig out of the e-mail abyss at work now. :-)

Oh and if you have me on facebook you might be able to get a clue as to what the other news is...

Thursday, August 3, 2006

Lyrical Thought #25

This thought is coming due to the amount of times this song has come into my head as a response to those worrying about how pretty a church is or the organ or ....

What is this Place

What is this place where we are meeting?
Only a house, the earth its floor,
walls and a roof sheltering people,
window for light, an open door.
Yet it becomes a body that lives
when we are gathered here,
and know our God is near.

Words from afar, stars that are falling,
sparks that are sown in us like seed.
Names for our God, dreams, signs and wonders
sent from the past are all we need.
We in this place remember and speak
again what we have heard:
God's free redeeming word.

And we accept bread from this table,
broken and shared, a living sign.
Here in this world, dying and living,
we are each other's bread and wine.
This is the place where we can receive
what we need to increase:
God's justice and God's peace.

"What is this place?"
Hymn text by Huub Oosterhuis, Tr. David Smith, © 1984 TEAM Publications.

Tuesday, August 1, 2006


Finally after lots of waiting J.A.G. season one is on DVD. Hopefully the rest of the series will come out quicker.