Rants-A-Plenty



A good word from the Good Word...


Sunday, July 29, 2007
 
:::the big move:::

Well, I have officially abandoned you, Blogger. Sorry. All my new posts will now be at my business site, Level 3 Media Productions. Thanks for everything...you've been great!

Love,
Me

Peace out, yo.

(0) comments


Wednesday, July 18, 2007


Thursday, November 09, 2006
 
:::out with the old:::

So...Haven't been here in a while. And neither have you, as my SiteMeter has told me, that is unless you've been searching Google for "Ralph needs..." then you've visited here from as far away as, like, Scotland and Cambridge and England...so nice of you to stop by, and, if you look below, you will find one of the most comprehensive "Ralph needs" lists on the internet (just check out Google, I'm #1...woo hoo).

Anyway, there is so much to say, and yet, I've had so little time to say it here in this forum...very sad, indeed. Let's see:

--We've moved into her house while she's in Africa.
--We've been leading a House Church out of our home.
--I am no longer with this client, and am instead finally pursuing my own thing, which is going amazingly well! In the past few weeks, I've produced and edited projects for Faith Miracle Temple, Filter Chef, The Stitching Post, and The Holiday Craft & Gift Extravaganza! I've also been contracted to write some 30-second commercial spots for Media Images out of Columbus, Ohio.
--I am having my new website designed and getting it ready for a January launch.
--When I went to Vegas in the spring, I got my Adobe Expert certification in Premiere Pro & After Effects!

So, yeah...kinda busy, you could say, but a good busy.

By the way, here's some new haunts of mine:

::: Bloggy McBlogalot...the home of NY Post writer and comedian Mandy Stadtmiller. Seriously, one of the funniest writers I've ever come across.
::: LonelyGirl15...an online video serial story that has me hooked.
::: Caduceus...Maynard's got his own wine!
::: Creative Cow...a great online resource for video editors and post-production folks like me.

Well, that is all for now. Have a wonderful day, and I'll jump on again soon...but, don't count on it.

Peace out, yo.

(2) comments


Tuesday, March 14, 2006
 
:::the insanity of march & april:::

Ah, tis the season! Winter Drumline and Winterguard season, that is. With competitions practically every weekend, video production projects brewing for a lot of other groups and organizations, trying to move from one house to the other, and the everyday insanity that is my normal life, it's hard to find time to even stop and have an Oreo cookie, one of the little joys of life. But all is good. Our 3rd Annual Oscar Party was a lot of fun, and we thank everyone who attended. The desserts and appetizers were really creative this year...pictures to follow soon.

I've got an opportunity to go to NAB this year...for FREE! This could be such an awesome opportunity to get some hands-on training on the new suite of Adobe software I just purchased straight from the guys who developed it. I'd be going with Jim Farrell, a great friend and one of the best handheld Steadicam operators in the nation. A week in Vegas with some of the newest and coolest equipment out there? Hmm...better leave the credit cards at home.

The site redesign is still moving along. I've been finalizing the graphics and color scheme and doing some more behind-the-scenes maintenance.

If you happen to be in the Ohio area here in a couple of weeks, I STRONGLY encourage you to go check this out:



You'll be able to check out this guy's work, which is worth the dollar admission alone. And heck, since you're only paying a buck to get in, you'll have plenty of extra moola to buy some of his pieces.

Well, that's it for now. Hope all is well wherever you are.

Peace out, yo.

(3) comments


Sunday, February 26, 2006
 
:::3rd annual oscar party:::




That's right, kids! It's that time of year again! Bring your most creative dessert, appetizer or beverage inspired by one of the nominated films, actors, songs...whatver...and meet us at the Hobbit Door Cafe for fun, trivia, and merriment! If you didn't get the evite, just drop me a comment and I'll get one out to you with all the details!

Peace out, yo!

(0) comments


Friday, February 10, 2006
 
:::hi, i'm kenneth brown...:::

...and this is reDesign!

Over the next couple of weeks I will be redesigning the look and feel of this little corner of the "Triple-Dubya". So, don't be hatin' if I don't post as often...heck, look at my track record as it is! But never fear...if you're actually one of...um...one other person who actually checks this site, I'll still be checking in as I move along in the remodel.

Peace out, yo.

(1) comments


Saturday, February 04, 2006
 
:::haunting the idiot:::

I've mentioned his site before a couple of years ago when I stumbled upon it one night linking from one blog that turned into finding another blog that turned into finding another one, that led to his wife's blog (who I think has decided to stop posting on her current site and has gone into the Blogosphere Protection Program...oh well, sad she's gone...she seemed really cool too), which ultimately led me to his site (yeah, we've all done it...the best way to find interesting blogs). Anyway, the first night I found it, lo and behold he was talking about reading a Thomas Merton book, who's writing I love. So, for the past couple of years, I've been haunting his site, appreciating his wisdom and insight and really enjoying his writing on many things. Well, his post for February 2nd, has been stuck in my head ever since I read it yesterday. He starts with this quote by Emilie Griffin from her book, Clinging-The Experience of Prayer:


In order to find a person who prays, you have to look for clues; charitableness, good temper, patience, a fair ability to handle stress, resonance, openness to others. What happens to people who pray is that their inward life gradually takes over from their outward life. That is not to say that they are any less active. They may be competent lawyers, doctors, businessmen. But their hearts lie in the inner life and they are moved by that.


Now, if that doesn't put you in an introspective mood, I don't know what will. What I love about Brian's reflections on this quote are the transparency and humility he shows tackling it:


"I am learning that the burden of leadership can be exhausting and above all I am learning that the call to be consistent and unceasing in prayer is a greater call than any of these. Before we seek Truth, let us pray. Before we pursue wisdom, let us pray. Before we seek to lead, let us pray."


That took me out. Looking at my own prayer life, I see the evidence of potential...nothing more. I'm finding that, as Griffin put it, I'm being moved too often by the wrong things...if, in fact, my inward life is taking over from my outward life...man...I really need to do some spring cleaning, especially in the areas of my attitude and thought life.

Brian goes on to say:


"The call to pray is the call to know the mind and heart of God; and the ability to lead with Truth and Wisdom will only flow from a Spirit that quietly dwells in the presence of the King."


What great insight on how real leadership should look. And that can take on many forms...professionally, in ministry, as a husband..."the call to know the mind and heart of God"...

I need to dwell in Him...be absorbed into His arms...call Him "Father"...re-crown Him as King...before I seek or pursue anything, I need to be reminded...constantly...that He desires me to pursue Him with reckless abandon and the faith of a child. His idea of intimacy with Him and mine need to be in harmony...He's always had the right idea about it because it was breathed by Him in creation, and I haven't been good about trying to catch up as much as I should. Have I lost sight of how important prayer is? No. I see Him working in it every day! But, have I let it fall under the category of just one of those things I do...that it's something He uses in other peoples' lives, but not as much in mine because I don't feel like I need anything...and is that what it's become for me? Just someplace where I can fill out my itemized form of requests for myself and others and submit it to him about as intimately as an e-mail attachment? Is that reckless abandon? Is it radical? Is it what He desires from me? I can remember the times right after my sister died that no matter where I was, we were dialoguing constantly. I was cradled, comforted, encouraged, and walking in awe of His might and His strength. Spiritually, I felt awake and alert. I've let lethargy set in...my bones are dry and brittle, and I need His breath and His word to make them live and dance again. He hasn't moved, and now I'm crawling back...thirsty and weak. Funny thing, prayer. It's like the moment you pick up the phone and the person you were going to call is already on the other line...no dial tone or ring...they're just there waiting for you. I need to stop letting Him go to voicemail.

Lord, my ears are open now
I'm listening
I need to feel Your breath on me
To hear your mighty whisper
I'm listening now

PS- Seriously, if you get a chance, check out Brian's site, and tell him his crazy Merton fan from Dayton sent you.

Peace out, yo.

(0) comments


Tuesday, January 31, 2006
 
:::i never knew:::

For those of you who read my little rant on the "over"-theologization of stuff, you'll appreciate that I decided to take this little quiz that I saw on my pastor's site. Enjoy...

You scored as Anselm. Anselm is the outstanding theologian of the medieval period.He sees man's primary problem as having failed to render unto God what we owe him, so God becomes man in Christ and gives God what he is due. You should read 'Cur Deus Homo?'

Anselm

100%

Karl Barth

80%

Martin Luther

73%

John Calvin

73%

Jonathan Edwards

60%

Friedrich Schleiermacher

53%

Charles Finney

33%

J?Moltmann

33%

Augustine

33%

Paul Tillich

7%

Which theologian are you?
created with QuizFarm.com


Too bad I have no idea who this guy is...hee hee. I'll have more later.

Peace out, yo.

(0) comments


Friday, January 27, 2006
 
:::breathe me:::

This song was featured on the season finale of HBO's Six Feet Under and it hasn't left my mind since. Enjoy...


(0) comments


Tuesday, November 29, 2005
 
:::happy belated thanksgiving:::

"Let us always remember, the Indian is and was just as human as the white people." >>>

Peace for all, yo.

(0) comments


Tuesday, November 15, 2005
 
:::another blatant rip-off from ordinary divergence:::

So...Joel keeps putting cool ideas up on his site and I keep stealing them. Oh well. Like him, I love personality tests, so here's the results of one I just took. As I am not near as good of a judge to its accuracy as are those who know me, drop me a line and let me know what you think.

Advanced Global Personality Test Results
Extraversion |||||||||||||||||| 73%
Stability |||||||||||||||||||| 86%
Orderliness |||||||||| 36%
Accommodation |||||||||||||||||| 76%
Interdependence |||||||||||||||||||| 90%
Intellectual |||||| 30%
Mystical |||||||||||||||| 63%
Artistic |||||||||||||||||||| 90%
Religious |||||||||||||||||||| 90%
Hedonism |||||||||| 36%
Materialism |||||||||| 36%
Narcissism |||||||||||| 50%
Adventurousness |||||||||||||||||| 76%
Work ethic |||||||||||||||| 63%
Self absorbed |||||| 30%
Conflict seeking |||| 16%
Need to dominate |||| 16%
Romantic |||||||||||||||| 63%
Avoidant |||| 16%
Anti-authority |||||||||||| 43%
Wealth |||||||||||| 50%
Dependency |||| 16%
Change averse |||||| 30%
Cautiousness |||||||||||| 50%
Individuality |||||| 23%
Sexuality |||||||||||||||||||| 83%
Peter pan complex |||||||||||| 43%
Physical security |||||||||||||||||||| 83%
Physical Fitness |||||| 24%
Histrionic |||| 16%
Paranoia || 10%
Vanity |||| 16%
Hypersensitivity || 10%
Female cliche |||||| 30%
Take Free Advanced Global Personality Test
personality tests by similarminds.com

Stability results were very high which suggests you are extremely relaxed, calm, secure, and optimistic.

Orderliness results were moderately low which suggests you are, at times, overly flexible, improvised, and fun seeking at the expense of reliability, work ethic, and long term accomplishment.

Extraversion results were high which suggests you are overly talkative, outgoing, sociable and interacting at the expense too often of developing your own individual interests and internally based identity.


trait snapshot:

messy, disorganized, social, tough, outgoing, rarely worries, self revealing, open, risk taker, likes the unknown, likes large parties, makes friends easily, likes to stand out, likes to make fun of people, reckless, optimistic, positive, strong, does not like to be alone, ambivalent about chaos, abstract, impractical, not good at saving money, fearless, trusting, thrill seeker, not rule conscious, enjoys leadership, strange, loves food, abstract, rarely irritated, anti-authority, attracted to the counter culture


Peace out, yo.

(0) comments


Thursday, November 10, 2005
 
:::what i need:::

I got this idea from Joel's blog. Just type your name into Google like so:
"(enter your name here) needs"
My results were, how shall we say...interesting. Here's a round-up:

1. Ralph needs to fill out a claim form.
2. Ralph needs to get a plastic vagina. (hey, I just report them)
3. Ralph needs to apply for a Social Security Number.
4. Ralph needs to qualify by 8/13.
5. Ralph needs the money. (amen)
6. Ralph needs it. (not sure what "it" is, but I'm sure I do)
7. Ralph needs to limit his sodium intake. (no more french fries...darn)
8. Ralph needs equal parts faith, prayer and purity, not easy commodities for a fourteen year-old to come by. (ah to be 14 again...um...er, no...nevermind)
9. RALPH NEEDS YOUR HELP! (a little desperate here)
10. Ralph needs your before he can begin the project.
11. Ralph needs a shrink...(I've been told that before)
12. Ralph needs to get a good fit for your horse and how to own one of Ralph's fine saddles. (um...we'll just let that one be)
13. Ralph needs to get out more in the real world. (what, I'm not in it now?)
14. Ralph needs me. (stalker)
15. Ralph needs to learn golf in two days. (I've played on and off for 15 years and still haven't learned it)
16. Ralph needs to understand the damage he has wrought. (mewhahahahahah!)
17. Ralph needs artichokes ready in 10 minutes. (doesn't everyone?)
18. Ralph needs a good whuppin'. (and how!)
19. RALPH NEEDS A BIGGER WINCH ON HIS MACHINE TO TO KEEP HIM ON THE GROUND! (this has been a constant problem all my life...I never knew it was public!)
20. Ralph needs to sit down and shut up. (and I think that's an appropriate final one there)

Have fun with this.

Peace out, yo.

(0) comments


Monday, November 07, 2005
 
:::a few random musings...and rants:::

So, here's me...leaving church on Sunday. Walking leisurely to my car...smiling to myself because of the wonderful message I just heard by the director of this organization and the nice conversation I had with this about-to-be-married guy. It was a great day of corporate worship...one of those types of days that you keep humming the last song you heard for the next week and a half. As I'm walking to the car, I notice something sticking out of the side of the front door. Sadly, I was pretty much sure of what I was going to find...this had happened a few times before round about this time last year...and I was right. Someone had placed a political flyer on my car. And not just on my car...no. As I surveyed the parking lot, I saw that every vehicle had been violated in the same way. (don't worry, last year someone had the nerve to pass one out to me as I was walking in the door...glad that didn't happen again)

You know, dear reader, I'm not afraid to express my opinion on things political, and if you've been a visitor to my site for any given period of time, you also know that my attitudes have...ahem...evolved, so to speak in the last couple of years. This is a forum where I feel I can express those thoughts because it's an appropriate place to do so. But, when I go to church to worship my Lord, I don't like being peppered with political dogma, especially unsolicited and on private property! I could care less if you're with the Christian Voters Network, or Ballots for Jesus or whatever other name you want to place on yourself to make you feel more self-righteous about what it is that you're pushing down our throats. I happen to be a free-thinking, very well informed voter who can't wait until tomorrow morning to make my voice heard. But I don't want to hear about it in my church parking lot from your stupid flyer. If I wanted to be told how to vote and what to think, I'd go to Dobson's church!

I think my pastor put it best when he talked about the election last year from the pulpit (don't worry...I know you're thinking, "wait, isn't he contradicting what he just said?"...have patience, my constant reader). This was all he said (paraphrased):

"This year's election is a very important one. And I am not here to tell you how to vote, who to vote for or what to do on election day. I am only asking you this: Vote your Biblical Worldview."

Short, simple and eloquent. Straight to the point. You see, a place of worship should be safe...safe from dogma and politics, safe from closed-minded thinking about the issues, safe from the attitude that if you don't vote a certain way you're somehow not as holy as the next person. It should be a place where I can come before my Holy God and offer up my worship to him with others who have been touched by His love the same way I have. It should be a place where I can leave my burdens with my brothers and sisters, a place where we can pray with and for each other. It should be a place where there can be brokenness, confession and forgiveness without harsh judgement for past deeds long ago forgotten by our Creator because they were already paid for with His blood. It should be a place of singing and rejoicing, a place of humility and awe, as we stand in His presence and worship Him as one. It's not a place for a political rally, a sit-in, a campaign stop (I really hate that one). Please leave your politics at home. If you want to discuss the issues with me, first of all, read up...become an INFORMED voter. Get to know about the candidates and the issues...ALL SIDES. Don't take someone else's word for it, no matter how annoying his voice is (yes, another Dobson slam). Think about the impact your vote will have on you, your family, your community and your country. Once you're informed, pray, pray, pray, pray, PRAY about it! Get into the Word, see what He has to say to His bride about what matters the most to Him. Check your Biblical worldview with the worldview of the issues involved. Again, don't let others tell you what to think or how to vote. Then, call me. Let's go to lunch and talk, or chill out over coffee...whatever. Let's discuss the issues as clear-headed adults seeking wisdom from a perfect and holy God, always asking Him to guide our thoughts and our hearts. That's how the political process should work among Believers. Radical, I know. And I am serious, if you want to discuss this further, drop me a line, and I'd be glad to chat with you.


thing number two

I'm really excited about home churches. Radically Biblical...who woulda thunk it!


thing number three

Still waiting to hear back from you guys about your Ultimate Road Trip CD. Looking forward to your responses.


thing number four

Band season is almost over. Indy, here we come!


That is all for now. Thanks for reading.

Peace out, yo.

(0) comments


Monday, October 31, 2005
 
:::you say alito and i say burrito:::

So for some reason over the past couple of years I have been getting unsolicited e-mail from Mr. Ken Mehlman, the RNC Chairman. I have requested countless times to be removed from his list because:

A. I am not a Republican, I'm an independent,
B. I never signed up to be on his mailing list...EVER! Nor did I ever visit a site that would have put my e-mail address on his list,
C. He somehow obtained my Apex e-mail account...yes an account tied to my church...sounds fishy, huh!

So, anyway, back to this e-mail. Big Daddy Ken wanted me to know that this new guy that Rov...(ahem) Bush has nominated is "a fair-minded jurist with an impeccable track record of interpreting the law, not making it." He then went on to warn me that the evil Demmies were "already on the attack, and they will hold nothing back in obstructing this highly qualified nominee. Don't let the spin from media pundits or attacks from Democrats distort Judge Alito's distinguished record as a judge, former federal prosecutor and public servant." WOW! It really is Halloween...scary stuff! In conclusion, BDK told me that, "By nominating Judge Alito, President Bush continues to fulfill his commitment to appoint qualified judges who will not legislate from the bench."

Now, the funny thing is, a few weeks ago I got an e-mail from BDK telling me about that one gal...um...er...what was her name? Sheesh, can't seem to find any mention of her anywhere on the RNC websites. That's strange...it's like they want us to forget she ever existed. Oh yeah, here she is, in that old e-mail...Harriet Miers (see my post here for some thoughts/rants about her nomination). So this old e-mail, BDK says, "President Bush has once again, after thoughtful deliberation and consultation, nominated an outstanding person in Harriet Miers to serve on the Supreme Court. Harriet Miers has had a trailblazing career as one of the top lawyers in the country and is extraordinarily well qualified to serve on the Supreme Court. Harriet Miers has demonstrated her commitment to the principle that judges must not legislate from the bench, but rather strictly interpret the Constitution with respect for the law."

Wait a minute...aren't you saying the same thing about her that you're saying now about Burrito? And you want us to do the same thing? Sign petitions, call our senators and call into talk radio shows in order to stop the spin of the media pundits and "ensure a timely confirmation"?

Here's the thing, Kenny...burn me once, shame on me...burn me twice, shame on you. Sorry, pal, I just don't buy the Texas Snake Oil he's selling anymore. Miers was a horrible pick...just horrible! So, for me the verdict is still out. So much of the right is still so focused on the Big "A" debate that they don't care much about anything else in terms of the law and the constitution (again, see the post here). And while everyone is trying to hide under a rock and distance themselves from ol' "Scooter", it just makes it more difficult to believe anything that comes out of the mouth of this administration. It's almost making me miss Clinton...almost.

I think this article sums up the footnote that Miers will be in history.

Hoping for peace, yo.

(0) comments


Wednesday, October 26, 2005
 
:::e-town:::

If you haven't yet, go check out the new movie by Mr. Hit-or-Miss director Cameron Crowe, Elizabethtown. This is one great flick! Solid performances by the principals, Orlando Bloom and Kirsten Dunst, and one of the best supporting casts I've seen. Each and every character is memorable. Crowe has once again crafted a rich and fulfilling script, ala Almost Famous, and has proven once again that there is no one better at crafting the perfect soundtrack for his images. That's where it really shines...where the music takes you further than the dialogue, performance and imagery could take you alone, not that any of them are lacking. It just complements everything else so well, it becomes a character of its own.

Well, dear readers, one of the climactic moments of the film is the road trip the protagonist takes...and music plays center-stage to it. So, I have some homework for you. Put together 15 songs that to you are the perfect soundtrack to a road trip that you would take. Tell us where your journey would start, where you would stop along the way, and ultimately where you would end up. No time limit on this one...just do it at your own leisure and put it down below in the comments. I'll post mine after I get a few from y'all. Looking forward to your responses.

Peace out, yo.

(0) comments


 
:::what i'm enjoying:::

Well, time for another round-up of what's been inspiring and intriguing me as of late. If you find something you like here, drop me a line and let me know.

Books
Searching for God Knows What- Donald Miller
Traveling Music : Playing Back the Soundtrack to My Life and Times- Neil Peart
Praise Habit: Finding God In Sunsets And Sushi- David Crowder

Music
Brave- Nichole Nordeman
Arriving- Chris Tomlin
It's Time- Michael Buble
Come Dream With Me- Jane Monheit
How To Dismantle an Atomic Bomb- U2
Six Feet Under, Vol. 2: Everything Ends- Original Soundtrack
Monkey Business- Black Eyed Peas
Snatch- Original Motion Picture Soundtrack

Pretty strange mix...and this has just been in the past week! Ah well.

I've also really been enjoying the new season of CSI:, CSI: NY, and LOST...as you could surmise from my previous post. Oh, and you have to check out The Colbert Report (the "t's" are silent...except in "the"). Finally, a show that mocks the utter stupidity of "The Situation Room", "Anderson Cooper 360" and any show on Fox News (and no, I will not put the links to these shows up because they're all stupid).

So, let's get away from the media stuff and on to a couple/few great local places here in our very own Dayton, Ohio...

Cool Local Places

Powers Fine Art Photography
Great local photographer and great guy! Stace and I got to meet him during the Urban Nights deal last weekend. His studio is just two doors down from the one I work at, and his work is just amazing. He's got a great eye. Go check him out. And while you're there, you can check out his wife's work at...

Kate Lally's Euphorbia Ceramic Art
Housed in the same studio as her husband, Kate creates some of the coolest tile and 3-D ceramic art I've seen.

The Dublin Pub
Great food, a sweet environment and cool live music on the weekends makes this a real favorite of mine. Add in a wonderful beer selection and you've got yourself one awesome place to hang.

That's all for now.

Peace out, yo.

(0) comments


Tuesday, October 25, 2005
 
:::thank you, rosa:::



...thank you, and Godspeed.

Peace out, yo.

(0) comments


Friday, October 07, 2005
 
:::4 8 15 16 23 42:::

If you don't know what these numbers mean, I strongly encourage you to find out. The Hanso Foundation is always looking for new test subjects for their Dharma Initiative. I'd book my flight with Oceanic Airlines if I were you. Don't worry, the island is waiting...

(0) comments


Thursday, October 06, 2005
 
:::Neo-Calvinistic Armenianism in a Post-Modern Poly-Theistic and Darwinist-Infused World:::

Actually, that's not the real title of my blog...I just wanted to attract all you smart-type theologians that love to sound really smart by using all these great big super-intelligent churchy words. Me? I'm more of a "grace" and "mercy" and "peace" kind of guy. I love to read books...if you've seen our house, you'll know that we have at least a couple lying around. Give me a good Piper or Donald Miller book, and I'm good to go. I guess my problem has always been that there are too many people out there in our little culture that think when we argue theology, we have to use other sources than the original text. Calvinism, Armenianism, Amyraldianism, and all those other -isms...man, they just freak me out. Not that I don't think we shouldn't be able to back up what we believe with proof and understanding...that is what makes my faith real to me...the words of Scripture coming alive. But when we rely so much on the text of others outside the original source...especially to explicitly defend our theology...there is a great fear that we could confuse non-believers and baby Christians. Back in my school days when I was having to churn out a research paper on a different book every week, I remember never quite understanding why my teachers and professors in both HS and college wanted me to go out and find "other sources" to back up my hypothesis. Shouldn't the original text be enough...not 15-30 other people's take on it? I don't know...that's just me I guess.

Theology can be a very confusing and murky topic...causing a lot of dissention, confusion and even violence in some of our more barbaric times. Yet, it's importance to how we live out our faith cannot be discounted. Let's just always be careful that we never take the word of some long-dead theologian author over the inherent truth of the scriptures, and make it our goal to always use it and it alone as our guiding compass.

:::the bi-monthly update...I'm pathetic:::

Wow...a whole lotta stuff's been going down this summer. So, for those of you still with me, here's my thoughts and rants on the world around us. By the way, if you have toes, I can't guarantee they won't be stepped on during this post. Yeah, I know....great way to start, but I thought I would warn you in advance if you're looking for some flowery daisy-filled muse on how wonderful everyone is doing and all. If that's what you want, you can listen to Bush talk about how strong our resolve is in Iraq and how much progress is being made towards democracy while the clerics and Sunni's prepare for the next great civil war in that edge of the world. See, there I go, already irking off the pro-Bushies that read my trivial tripes. So with that, are you ready? Hope so!

The War in Iraq
Sometimes it doesn't hit home until you get to participate in something honoring one of the brave ones who lost their lives. About a month ago, we were approached by Dave Schaffer of the Miami University Marching Band to do a photo/video tribute for Michael Cifuentes to be shown on the JumboTron during the band's pre-game performance at the September 28th game. I got the proof finished about a week before the game and had Dave come in to watch it. As it was ending, he just lost it...completely broke down...and he talked about what a great kid he was...that infectious smile...his sense of humor...and his dedication to everything he did. The kid was only 25 years old. And it brought even more to the surface for me about this whole darn mess...what are we doing? Is this really worth it anymore, or are we as the USA just being dragged along by our megalomaniacal president who can't see past his own nose? Please, if someone out there can help me understand why Mike and so many others like him are dying, then go for it. I'm just tired of this mess. BRING OUR MEN AND WOMEN HOME!

Hurricane Katrina and Rita
Just a couple of bullet points:
-Give...give here!
-This is not a political or racial issue, it's an issue of helping others in need...period!
-Ray Nagin is a complete idiot and should take the fall for the entire mess...it's his city and he was responsible for getting his people out.
-Celine Dion is the most complete idiot ever! Here's a quote from her via satellite from her opulent dressing room at Caesar's Palace in Las Vegas on the Larry King Live show just days after Katrina hit:

"Yes, we gave $1 million but what we expect, what I want to look like the rest of the world, I open the television there's people still there waiting to be rescued and for me it's not acceptable. I know there's reasons for it. I'm sorry to say I'm being rude but I don't want to hear those reasons. You know, some people are stealing and they're making a big deal out of it. Oh, they're stealing 20 pair of jeans or they're stealing television sets. Who cares? They're not going to go too far with it. Maybe those people are so poor, some of the people who do that they're so poor they've never touched anything in their lives. Let them touch those things for once. The main thing right now it's not the people who are stealing. It's the people who are left there and they're watching helicopters flying over their heads and they're praying. How come it's so easy to send planes in another country to kill everyone in a second, to destroy lives?"

Yeah...I'd like to see her say that if some homeless person in Las Vegas broke into her home and stole all her stuff. Hypocrite.

Of Justices and Cronies...The Calamity of a Open Supreme Court Seat
Roe v. Wade WILL NOT be overturned in our lifetime. Accept it, deal with it and get over it! No matter who gets on the court, it won't matter. It is the law of the land. Now, we don't have to like it, but please people, stop picketing and shooting abortion doctors and start caring for these women who have found themselves in a position where they are confused and scared and need someone to listen to them without judgment. Love. It's simple, free and doesn't hurt anybody. Jesus seemed to use it pretty effectively while He was here. You'd be surprised to see their reaction to that.
As for Roberts and Miers. Well, there's stuff for both sides to like and dislike. Roberts is already there, so nothing we can do about that. But Miers is awaiting her tribunal...should be fun. I love seeing the right first jump to her side because their beloved Presi-Messiah has chosen her...then suddenly get really quiet when they find out that she supports gay rights. Funny little conservatives...you jump through hoops everytime Bush says "boo" then always have to back out when you realize he really doesn't care...he's so pig-headed and stubborn, he'll never admit a mistake.

Donald Miller
Read anything this man writes and you'll be delving deep into the heart of my passion for the church. He nails it. I'd put a bunch of quotes up by him, but I'm not lame like Ian, trying to pass things like that off as real posts on my blog. Instead, I just wait 2-3 months between posts, because that's far less lame. (love you, bro, seriously)

I'll share more at a later time.

Peace out, yo.

(0) comments


Tuesday, June 14, 2005
 
:::long-overdue random musings:::


Here's what my brain, ears and eyes have been taking in over the past little while:


The Michael Jackson Trial
Not guilty...um, no crap! Justice was served in this case. The accessor's mother is a complete psycho-hose-beast opportunism who saw a chance to bilk yet another rich entity out of millions and took it, putting her kids in harm's way as a means to an end for her own gain. Doubt she's gonna get many votes for "Mom of the Year".
Now, do I think MJ is or was a pedophilia? I'm not sure. I mean, let's be real...he is a bit odd...OK, I'm putting that lightly. He did have a rather bizarre magazine and book collection in his bedroom. He did let kids sleep in his bed with him. But Sneedon has a personal vendetta against him since he ducked out of the last allegations in 1993, and he's been trying to pin MJ for anything he could for the past 12 years, no matter what his sound byte said! He was very narrow-minded in picking this family and should have done MUCH more research before he even thought about bringing charges. Anyway, that's that...now we can hear more about...


The War in Iraq
Over 1700 of our troops dead since the war began...270 since the elections. How much longer...how many more lives? And for what? Cheaper oil? Um, check the gas stations. Saddam's out of power? Yeah, and the new government is soooo effective! Weapons of mass destruction? Debunked. It's time for an exit strategy, Mr. Bush. You're making me question my decision in November. You're reminding me a lot of Emperor Palpatine in...


Revenge of the Sith
Worth the wait! Ian stole the movie right out from under everyone! I am so glad George brought him back from Return of the Jedi to reprise his role...no one can do that voice like he can! Well-paced, great saber fights and space battles, humor that didn't seem forced. An all-around great prequel finale! Now, if we could only do something about the empire we're living in here with the administration's push for expansion of...


The Patriot Act
"The FBI would get expanded powers to subpoena records without the approval of a judge or grand jury in terrorism investigations under Patriot Act revisions approved Tuesday by the Senate Intelligence Committee." >>>
Um, anyone remember back in the 80's when we used to lambast the Soviet Union and all of the other Eastern Bloc countries for these type of "laws"? Anyone ever read 1984? You guys notice all the cameras at intersections now? Take a good look.
Come on! How many more civil liberties are we willing to give up for the sake of our "security and safety" when every day more and more internal investigations are coming to light that it was our own "intelligence" communities' inability to communicate with one another that caused the first plane to hit the first tower? Well, never fear...Big Brother is watching you!

"Don't fret precious I'm here, step away from the window
Go back to sleep

Lay your head down child
I won't let the boogeyman come

Count the bodies like sheep
To the rhythm of the war drums

Pay no mind to the rabble
Pay no mind to the rabble

Head down, go to sleep
To the rhythm of the war drums

Pay no mind what other voices say
They don't care about you, like I do, like I do
Safe from pain and truth and choice and other poison devils,
See, they don't give a poo about you, like I do.

Just stay with me, safe and ignorant,
Go back to sleep
Go back to sleep

Lay your head down child
I won't let the boogeyman come
Count the bodies like sheep
To the rhythm of the war drums

Pay no mind to the rabble
Pay no mind to the rabble

Head down, go to sleep to the rhythm of the war drums

I'll be the one to protect you from
Your enemies and all your demons

I'll be the one to protect you from
A will to survive and a voice of reason

I'll be the one to protect you from
Your enemies and your choices son
They're one in the same
I must isolate you
Isolate and save you from yourself

Swayin to the rhythm of the new world order and
Count the bodies like sheep to the rhythm of the war drums

The boogeymen are coming
The boogeymen are coming

Keep your head down, go to sleep, to the rhythm of a war drums

Stay with me
Safe and ignorant
Just stay with me
Hold you and protect you from the other ones
The evil ones
Don't love you son,
Go back to sleep"
"Pet" by APC

Sounds more like a Dick Cheney sound byte than a song, huh? But, I have been thoroughly enjoying...


TRANSFORMER
Check out this article in particular. It really got me thinking. I grew up in churches where we would for some unknown and random reason "stand on the third verse" of certain hymns. Why? Not really sure. But, just like good little lemmings, we'd all stand and sing the third verse the same way we sang the second and first verse...but standing up. I looked in Psalms...looked in Paul and Timothy's letters...looked in the Gospels (all 4 of them)...looked in the OT and NT using the NIV, KJV, NKJV, NASB, ABC, PDQ and ASAP versions, and saw nothing that mentioned this strange ritual as a means to an end to get closer to God. I was shocked! You mean there is no mention of this in the Bible?!?? And yet every church I attended as a kid and even as an adult has this strange ritual or a variation of it (standing during the "commitment" or "altar call" or "trash dump" time). The quote that stuck lout to me the most in KT's post was:

"I have to ask, was everyone really praising our Lord last night? Were all those people lifting songs to God at the top of their lungs out of worship? I'm sure a lot of them were. I'm also sure some of them were doing it because others were doing it. Why then do we have to ask people to worship this way? If it is genuine, it should emanate from our pores naturally. People should be shouting all of the time without an instruction to do so. Understanding we are all different and do things differently is the key to the body of Christ. If we were all the same, things wouldn't get done."

Wow...that's so true. Good word KT, and great blog! It reminds me of a lot of what my wife and I have been reading in...


PRAISE HABIT: Finding God in Sunsets and Sushi
We have been looking all over for a devo book to read since we got married that we both enjoy. So many of the "couples" or "married" ones just weren't cutting it...and we had tried quite a few. But this book is so incredibly well done. Sharp and witty writing that keeps you engrossed. Sound theology, great Psalms...just a great read! I encourage y'all to pick it up!

Anyway, that should be enough for now. I figure this one should give you Bush-lovers plenty to comment on below, so blast away.

Peace out, yo.


(0) comments


Wednesday, April 27, 2005
 
:::the quiz:::

Here are the official rules of the interview game:

1. If you want to participate, leave a comment below saying "interview me."
2. I will respond by asking you five questions - each person's will be different.
3. You will update your journal/blog with the answers to the questions.
4. You will include this explanation and an offer to interview others in the same post.
5. When others comment asking to be interviewed, you will ask them five questions.
6. I will answer reasonable follow up questions if you leave a comment.

Well, Kristi, here you go!

1. If you were to market “Tirimasoup”….what would be you’re ad scheme?
Here's the backstory on this one first:
A few years ago, my friend Jonathan and I decided to have a bunch of people over to his condo for dinner. We made homeade spaghetti and I was going to make my world-famous tirimasu recipe. Well...for some reason, that night the tirimasu never set, and became a soupy concoction instead. I was pretty disappointed, to say the least. But, my dear friends Kristi and Krista decided to try it anyway. Three bowls later apiece (yes, I said 3 bowls!) it was determined that the recipe was a complete success and that I should always mess up the recipe!
For my ad scheme, I think it would have a picture of me curled up in a fetal position, crying as people all around me are devouring multiple bowls of Tirimasoup. I slowly come out of my cocoon and realize that everyone likes it and we all start singing some cheezy disco song from the 70's, like "Fire" or "I Will Survive".

2. If you had only 1 CD to listen to for the rest of the year….what 15 songs would be on it?
This answer is merely a snapshot of today's current mood and taste. I cannot guarantee that I will feel this way about these songs even 20 minutes from now, so here goes, in no particular order:

Wedding Dress- Derek Webb
Nobody Loves Me- Derek Webb
In Perspective- Centerville World Percussion Line
Takin' A Chance On Love- Jane Monheit
The Outsider- A Perfect Circle
10,000 Miles- Mary Chapin Carpenter
Faith My Eyes- Derek Webb
Piece of Glass- Caedmon's Call
Every Season- Nichole Nordeman
I Am- Nichole Nordeman
Turtle- Alana Davis
Born- Over The Rhine
Bothered- Over The Rhine
Suitcase- Over The Rhine
Wired- Rhythm X

You have NO IDEA how hard that question was to answer...in fact, it was one of the reasons this quiz was so delayed in being posted!

3. What is the most lingering lesson/memory you took away from your Mexico mission trips?
Easy...be grateful! we are so blessed to live in this country where there is little fear of corrupt police that can take your house for no reason, where all the streets are fairly smooth to drive on, where our house sits on a foundation instead of dirt floors...and the Mexican people are so grateful for all they have, and are so willing to give of themselves when we're the ones going down there to supposedly lend a hand...heck, they're the ones helping us...making us more humble. And to see the looks in the childrens' sun-darkened faces when we just hang out with them...man, it's just amazing how wonderful a Creator we serve.

4. If you had to perform one number, karaoke style, for 15 of your closest friends/family members of your choice, what song would it be and why? (include any specific ‘flair’ you would add.)
I know what you were thinking I would put, but it would probably be "Faith My Eyes" by Derek Webb. I haven't been able to stop singing that song since I heard it for the first time.

5. Describe your dream job? (again, paint us a picture with your eloquent prose.)
I have it! I get to be creative all day long...producing, editing, filming...I am very blessed to say that...there aren't many people who can.

So there you go...after months of waiting! Heck, I have no idea if anyone even still reads this blog it's been so long!

Peace out, yo.

(0) comments


 
:::me chillin' in south park:::



Thanks, Phil, for this cool link!

(0) comments


Wednesday, February 09, 2005
 
:::class act:::

In keeping with the need to pigeonhole people into classes and compartments, Rants-A-Plenty proudly presents this quiz. Thanks to Kristi for the link.

You scored as Middle Class. You're content in your position and would prefer a house or a family than a seven figure pay cheque. But you have your moments of weakness when you buy a lottery ticket in the hope of knowing how the rich and famous live.

Middle Class

96%

Upper middle Class

63%

alternative

25%

Luxurious Upper Class

8%

Lower Class

8%

What Social Status are you?
created with QuizFarm.com


I was really hoping to get "white trash" but I guess this will do.

Peace out, yo.

(0) comments


Tuesday, February 08, 2005
 
:::opening a new door:::

Thought I'd let you know that my wife and I's joint blogging venture has officially launched here. But don't worry, Constant Rants Reader, I'm not abandoning this site. There's still plenty to talk about over here, but we just wanted to have a place where we could collaborate and the like. So, I hope you enjoy whatever may happen over there and also continue to visit here for the ranting.

Peace out, yo.

(0) comments


Thursday, February 03, 2005


 
:::around the web:::

Thanks to Ian for pointing me in the direction of this site. Amanda Congdon is a great breath of fresh air in the blogosphere...the VLOG! She's very funny, and delivers witty and sarcastic commentary better than anyone I've seen. So, go see what you've been missing.

Another site that I call simply a guilty pleasure because of its totally ridiculous, incessant and random violence...we're talking so over the top I find myself laughing at it..is the Happy Tree Friends. If you want to see what the makers of all the classic Bugs Bunny and Wile E. Coyote cartoons wish they could have done to their characters, then this site is for you. WARNING: The site does contain a LOT of blood...mind you, it's harmless Flash animation blood, but don't say I didn't warn you.

So if that sort of thing disturbs or offends you, you can go here to be REALLY disturbed and offended. Seriously...check this site out. I guess, according to them, Psalm 12:7 proves the King James Version is the only accurate translation of the Bible. But that's not all! This site also includes many other articles, like this little 4-page ditty on the evils of Christian music. Mind you, the stuff on P.O.D. was kind of eye-opening, but some of the stuff he talks about with Third Day and Michael W. Smith were so laughable. And check out his articles on The Passion of The Christ, a movie that has completely changed lives...wow this guy and his minions are OUT THERE! Good to see these wonderful people putting such a nice face on Christianity...a Christianity where there is no redemption for people who've made mistakes in their past (see the Sandi Patty and Michael English entries on the various CCM-bashing pages, then check this out on Sandi Patty's website and this out on Michael English's website), and who embraces conspiracy theories to evoke fear...just wonderful...that's gonna get the people running into churches by the busfull! I better stop now, or I'm gonna get all riled up!

Yes, Constant Reader, only here at Rants-A-Plenty can we go from Happy Tree Friends to whipping up on a bunch of "religious" people who want to cast judgement on "fellow Christians". Gotta love it!

Peace out, yo.

(0) comments


Sunday, January 30, 2005
 
:::a quote from this morning:::

Here's a quote Rob used in his sermon this morning:

“We’re too comfortable to be spiritual…We think we will be able to
pursue God better without danger or hardship. And yet it works
in just the opposite way. Nothing is more difficult than to grow
spiritually when comfortable.” Tim Bascom, The Comfort Trap

Lord, help me to never get comfortable, and to embrace suffering when it comes my way.

Peace out, yo.


(0) comments


Monday, January 24, 2005
 
:::one more note:::

I began the last post with a quote from Johnny on his final show, and I decided I wanted to post the remainder of it here, in case you've never seen it before:

"And so it has come to this. I am one of the lucky
people in the world. I found something that I always
wanted to do and I have enjoyed every single minute of it."

So, blogging world, are you doing that something that you've always wanted to do? If not, what is that thing, and what's stopping you from doing it? I look forward to your comments.

Peace out, yo.


(0) comments


 
:::johnny:::

"And so it has come to this..."



I had the honor of growing up during the "Late Night" wars. David Letterman, Arsenio Hall, Chevy Chase, Magic Johnson...and so many others. But I'll never forget hearing those words that night in 1992, tearing up along with my parents, as the true King stepped down graciously and humbly after 30 years. I'll never forget when I finally became old enough that my parents would let me stay up and watch the monologue with them before I went to bed. If I didn't understand something he was talking about, my parents would always encourage me to look it up in the newspaper or other sources. Yes, you could say that Johnny was my political science and pop culture teacher growing up. Then, through my Jr. High and High School years, I would stay up and watch his mastery as an interviewer...always making the person in the other seat shine, and always coming out looking and smelling like a rose even when the person was as dull as a plastic spoon. I loved his comedy bits, his wonderful band, his ever-faithful sidekick Ed, and those God-awful ugly curtains. Through it all, it was that little smile, the ability to poke fun at himself when a joke bombed, and his way with the people who were invited on his show that made it work.

I think David Letterman summed it up very well in his statement:

"All of us who came after are pretenders. We will not see the
likes of him again. A night doesn't go by that I don't ask
myself, 'What would Johnny have done?' He has been greatly missed
since his retirement. Thank God for videotapes and DVDs. In this
regard, he will always be around. He was the best, a star and a
gentleman."

Thank you, Johnny. Thanks for all the laughs and for being one of the classiest acts to ever come out of the "Media Machine." There will never be another one of you. God bless your family in this difficult time. Godspeed, and goodnight.

Peace out, yo.

(0) comments


Wednesday, January 19, 2005
 
:::the church:::

Rob has been taking us through a series called "Deep Waters"...calling us to go deeper with God. It has been profoundly challenging. This past week he spoke about "the church"...not as a place but a living, breathing body...as the scriptures describe it. Throughout the sermon, I couldn't get this song out of my head:

The Church
(words and music by derek webb)

i have come with one purpose
to capture for myself a bride
by my life she is lovely
by my death she’s justified

i have always been her husband
though many lovers she has known
so with water i will wash her
and by my word alone

so when you hear the sound of the water
you will know you’re not alone

‘cause i haven’t come for only you
but for my people to pursue
you cannot care for me with no regard for her
if you love me you will love the church

i have long pursued her
as a harlot and a whore
but she will feast upon me
she will drink and thirst no more

so when you taste my flesh and my blood
you will know you’re not alone

there is none that can replace her
though there are many who will try
and though some may be her bridesmaids
they can never be my bride

Word up, Derek, word up indeed.

Peace out, yo.

(0) comments


Monday, January 17, 2005
 
:::i have a dream:::



Five score years ago, a great American, in whose symbolic shadow we stand signed the Emancipation Proclamation. This momentous decree came as a great beacon light of hope to millions of Negro slaves who had been seared in the flames of withering injustice. It came as a joyous daybreak to end the long night of captivity. But one hundred years later, we must face the tragic fact that the Negro is still not free.

One hundred years later, the life of the Negro is still sadly crippled by the manacles of segregation and the chains of discrimination. One hundred years later, the Negro lives on a lonely island of poverty in the midst of a vast ocean of material prosperity. One hundred years later, the Negro is still languishing in the corners of American society and finds himself an exile in his own land.

So we have come here today to dramatize an appalling condition. In a sense we have come to our nation's capital to cash a check. When the architects of our republic wrote the magnificent words of the Constitution and the Declaration of Independence, they were signing a promissory note to which every American was to fall heir.

This note was a promise that all men would be guaranteed the inalienable rights of life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness. It is obvious today that America has defaulted on this promissory note insofar as her citizens of color are concerned. Instead of honoring this sacred obligation, America has given the Negro people a bad check which has come back marked "insufficient funds." But we refuse to believe that the bank of justice is bankrupt. We refuse to believe that there are insufficient funds in the great vaults of opportunity of this nation.

So we have come to cash this check -- a check that will give us upon demand the riches of freedom and the security of justice. We have also come to this hallowed spot to remind America of the fierce urgency of now. This is no time to engage in the luxury of cooling off or to take the tranquilizing drug of gradualism. Now is the time to rise from the dark and desolate valley of segregation to the sunlit path of racial justice. Now is the time to open the doors of opportunity to all of God's children. Now is the time to lift our nation from the quicksands of racial injustice to the solid rock of brotherhood.

It would be fatal for the nation to overlook the urgency of the moment and to underestimate the determination of the Negro. This sweltering summer of the Negro's legitimate discontent will not pass until there is an invigorating autumn of freedom and equality. Nineteen sixty-three is not an end, but a beginning. Those who hope that the Negro needed to blow off steam and will now be content will have a rude awakening if the nation returns to business as usual. There will be neither rest nor tranquility in America until the Negro is granted his citizenship rights.

The whirlwinds of revolt will continue to shake the foundations of our nation until the bright day of justice emerges. But there is something that I must say to my people who stand on the warm threshold which leads into the palace of justice. In the process of gaining our rightful place we must not be guilty of wrongful deeds. Let us not seek to satisfy our thirst for freedom by drinking from the cup of bitterness and hatred.

We must forever conduct our struggle on the high plane of dignity and discipline. we must not allow our creative protest to degenerate into physical violence. Again and again we must rise to the majestic heights of meeting physical force with soul force.

The marvelous new militancy which has engulfed the Negro community must not lead us to distrust of all white people, for many of our white brothers, as evidenced by their presence here today, have come to realize that their destiny is tied up with our destiny and their freedom is inextricably bound to our freedom.

We cannot walk alone. And as we walk, we must make the pledge that we shall march ahead. We cannot turn back. There are those who are asking the devotees of civil rights, "When will you be satisfied?" we can never be satisfied as long as our bodies, heavy with the fatigue of travel, cannot gain lodging in the motels of the highways and the hotels of the cities. We cannot be satisfied as long as the Negro's basic mobility is from a smaller ghetto to a larger one. We can never be satisfied as long as a Negro in Mississippi cannot vote and a Negro in New York believes he has nothing for which to vote. No, no, we are not satisfied, and we will not be satisfied until justice rolls down like waters and righteousness like a mighty stream.

I am not unmindful that some of you have come here out of great trials and tribulations. Some of you have come fresh from narrow cells. Some of you have come from areas where your quest for freedom left you battered by the storms of persecution and staggered by the winds of police brutality. You have been the veterans of creative suffering. Continue to work with the faith that unearned suffering is redemptive.

Go back to Mississippi, go back to Alabama, go back to Georgia, go back to Louisiana, go back to the slums and ghettos of our northern cities, knowing that somehow this situation can and will be changed. Let us not wallow in the valley of despair. I say to you today, my friends, that in spite of the difficulties and frustrations of the moment, I still have a dream. It is a dream deeply rooted in the American dream.

I have a dream that one day this nation will rise up and live out the true meaning of its creed: "We hold these truths to be self-evident: that all men are created equal." I have a dream that one day on the red hills of Georgia the sons of former slaves and the sons of former slaveowners will be able to sit down together at a table of brotherhood. I have a dream that one day even the state of Mississippi, a desert state, sweltering with the heat of injustice and oppression, will be transformed into an oasis of freedom and justice. I have a dream that my four children will one day live in a nation where they will not be judged by the color of their skin but by the content of their character. I have a dream today.

I have a dream that one day the state of Alabama, whose governor's lips are presently dripping with the words of interposition and nullification, will be transformed into a situation where little black boys and black girls will be able to join hands with little white boys and white girls and walk together as sisters and brothers. I have a dream today. I have a dream that one day every valley shall be exalted, every hill and mountain shall be made low, the rough places will be made plain, and the crooked places will be made straight, and the glory of the Lord shall be revealed, and all flesh shall see it together. This is our hope. This is the faith with which I return to the South. With this faith we will be able to hew out of the mountain of despair a stone of hope. With this faith we will be able to transform the jangling discords of our nation into a beautiful symphony of brotherhood. With this faith we will be able to work together, to pray together, to struggle together, to go to jail together, to stand up for freedom together, knowing that we will be free one day.

This will be the day when all of God's children will be able to sing with a new meaning, "My country, 'tis of thee, sweet land of liberty, of thee I sing. Land where my fathers died, land of the pilgrim's pride, from every mountainside, let freedom ring." And if America is to be a great nation, this must become true. So let freedom ring from the prodigious hilltops of New Hampshire. Let freedom ring from the mighty mountains of New York. Let freedom ring from the heightening Alleghenies of Pennsylvania! Let freedom ring from the snowcapped Rockies of Colorado! Let freedom ring from the curvaceous peaks of California! But not only that; let freedom ring from Stone Mountain of Georgia! Let freedom ring from Lookout Mountain of Tennessee! Let freedom ring from every hill and every molehill of Mississippi. From every mountainside, let freedom ring.

When we let freedom ring, when we let it ring from every village and every hamlet, from every state and every city, we will be able to speed up that day when all of God's children, black men and white men, Jews and Gentiles, Protestants and Catholics, will be able to join hands and sing in the words of the old Negro spiritual, "Free at last! free at last! thank God Almighty, we are free at last!"

Peace out, yo.

(0) comments


Saturday, January 15, 2005
 
:::my worth--like it matters:::

I am worth $2,480,012.00 on HumanForSale.com

Peace out, yo...

(0) comments


Thursday, January 06, 2005
 
:::random musings:::

Movies you may have missed in 2004 that you MUST see (in no particular order):

:::Garden State:::
-Amazngly written and directed, with memorable performances by Braff and Portman, and one of my favorite indie actors...Peter Sarsgaard. Also, one of the BEST soundtracks I've ever heard!

:::Shaun of the Dead:::
-Probably one of the funniest "horror" films I've ever seen...but with a great script that also allowed the actors to explore some meaty, emotional material. Imagine myself and Ian as slackers, living in a city overrun by zombies and you'll get the idea. Very well done.

:::Napoleon Dynamite:::
-"Sweet!" Nuff said...just see it...it's the Angus of the 21st Century.

:::Sky Captain & The World of Tomorrow:::
-Eye-popping visual effects combined with a fun and engrossing storyline makes all things 1930's cool again.

:::The Incredibles:::
-Yup...Pixar has done it again. Well-written, superb voice talent and sight gags coming out it's ears, this movie is not only brilliantly funny, but has a wonderful message at it's core. check it out.

:::The Manchurian Candidate:::
-A very good remake of the classic, Denzel Washington shows once again why he is one of the best actors of this generation. He's surrounded by a great supporting cast (check out Jon Voight's performance especially), and ably directed by Jonathan Demme, who takes a good script and makes it better with solid cinematography and editing.

Others you probably didn't miss, but if you did, you should go see:

:::Harry Potter and the Prisoner of Azkaban:::
-Best one yet...

:::Spider Man 2:::
-Even better than the first...

:::Shrek 2:::
-Also better than the original...

Not a complete list...but it gives you some place to get started.

Peace out, yo.

(0) comments


Sunday, December 05, 2004
 
:::WHAT'S UP BLOGGING WORLD:::

Just a note to let you know I'm not dead. Lot's to talk about, actually...like my wedding this summer...and many other fascinating facts and figures. But, alas, time is once again short as my company continues to stay very busy...we're in the post-production phase of the fall marching band season.

Anyway, more to came at a later date when I can get all my thoughts together. I'm thinking about migrating to another site and starting one up with my wife...thoughts on this?

Peace out, yo.

(0) comments


Tuesday, May 18, 2004
 
Got tired of seeing Mandy Moore on my website...so I edited it. :)

(0) comments


Friday, April 30, 2004
 
::more random musings::

Am I the only one who doesn't care that Friends is coming to an end, but care A LOT that I have to wait an entire summer for the next new episode of CSI!!!

Thai 9 is a really good...and not very expensive restaurant if you're looking for great sushi and thai food.

I really hope that this does some good, but I'm not holding my breath.

Here's some interesting snippets from this article:

:::"Sinclair Broadcast Group has ordered its seven ABC stations not to broadcast Friday's "Nightline" that will air the names and photographs of the more than 500 U.S. troops killed in the Iraq war."

:::"In a statement online, the Sinclair group said the "Nightline" program "appears to be motivated by a political agenda designed to undermine the efforts of the United States in Iraq.""

:::"Sinclair general counsel Barry Faber confirmed the company told its ABC affiliates not to air Friday's Nightline."

"We find it to be contrary to public interest," he said.

ABC said that on the first anniversary of the September 11, 2001, terrorist attacks it aired the names and pictures of all those who died on that day.

"ABC News will continue to report on all facets of the war in Iraq and the war on terrorism in a manner consistent with the standards which ABC News has set for decades," it said.

Sinclair's statement said ABC is politicizing the war."


Hmm...don't know how I feel about this one. Shouldn't Sinclair allow the American public to decide whether or not this particular episode of Nightline is biased or not? If they continue to show Peter Jennings scowl every time he says the words "President Bush"...or not take Good Morning America off the air beause Charlie Gibson is a completely raving liberal and isn't afraid to show it...

Here's the thing...I hate Limbaugh and Hannity for the exact same reasons I hate Moore and Franken...they are lunatics and are so far to either the left or the right they refuse to even try and have a non-combatative conversation about any issue. But...there needs to be non-partisan, unbiased coverage of world events, and sadly there is absolutely nowhere to get that in this country anymore. Fox News...yeah, right!! Heck, even the AP has an opinion these days! I might as well be getting my news from Pat Robertson's CBN News program! Regardless, the American public should have the right to decide whether or not ABC is "politicizing the war"...um, folks...war IS political...duh! Sheesh! But the fact that four of the top executives from Sinclair have been donors to the Bush/Cheney releection campaign shows just one thing...these guys are making just as much of a political issue out of it as they are claiming ABC is doing...think about it...

Nuff said for tonight...peace out, yo.

(0) comments


Saturday, April 24, 2004
 
BEEN MEANING TO DO THIS FOR A LONG TIME...

...so here she is...the love of my life with some goofy looking guy she just met off the street...isn't he one lucky son of a gun!



This is our official engagement photo, taken by David Lesko back in December. When time permits, I'll share the entire engagement story.

Peace out, yo...

(0) comments


 
SO...YEAH...UM...

:::random musings:::

13 Going On 30 is a really funny movie...hope it catapults Ms. Garner to superstardom! She is wonderful in this...a far cry from Sidney Bristow on Alias (one of the only shows worth watching on the tube).

You thought the lyrics I posted were cool? No? Well...um...hate to say it, but I was completely shown up by Robin on her blog when she posted a link to these lyrics...scary thing is...I think I dated that girl once...or maybe her sister...the story sounds eerily familiar...hmm...

So, a famous football player dies in Afghanistan...and countless other nameless and faceless young kids die there every day, but do they get their names in the paper or all over the internet news sites? Nope...just numbers and statistics...guess you have to become famous before anyone but your family cares about the sacrifice you made for your country...

Mad props to a great bunch of kids for taking home the WGI World Championships last weekend in San Diego...you guys truly rock! Way to stretch it and be your best!

That's all for now...peace out, yo.

(0) comments


Thursday, April 22, 2004
 
HIS ROYAL BADNESS...

...is back...and back with a vengance!

...my, my, my...this CD is rocking my socks off...let's just put it this way, school is in session, and Prince is at the head of the class...bringing us back the groove...the funk...the old-school R&B...and most of the current popular music posers can only sit back and listen and gape in awe and wonder and wish they could write and arrange even one song...just one song...that could groove like this entire CD does.

It's name? Befittingly...Musicology. Download it...buy it at your local Wrecka Stow...whatever. If you want to remember what music used to be like...created in freedom...without the system looking over the artist's shoulder and telling him or her what to play or write...get this CD!

Don't worry...this isn't the Prince you may remember...no sexual bravado...just love songs about fidelity, love and devotion to his wife...references to his Lord and Savior...and party jams that you can't sit still to.

...here's a sample...open your textbooks to chapter "F" for "Funk" and read along...

---Musicology---

Wish I had a dollar
4 every time they say
Don't U miss the feeling
Music gave ya
Back in the day?

Let's groove, September
Earth, Wind and Fire
Hot Pants by James
Sly's gonna take U higher
Minor keys and drugs
Don't make a rollerskate jam
Take UR pick- turntable or a band?

---A Million Days---

U're the perfect picture of what love should look like
And I want 2 be ur frame

I didn't back then, but I do know now
That wherever U r is home

---Life 'O' the Party---

Everybody can smell this funk u'all
Even down in Atlanta, GA
Everybody-even Dre 'n them
Know it's OK
We ain't trippin' U'all
On this special day
We just called 2 let U know
U better not come if U can't stay

We gonna have us a party
All r welcome 2
We ain't down with nobody
That don't party like we do
Once we get it started
We got 2 go all night
This is the life 'o' the party
We gonna do it right

---Dear Mr. Man---

Ain't no sense in voting
Same song with a different name
Might not be in the back of the bus
But it sho' feel just the same
Ain't nothin' fair about welfare
Ain't no assistance in AIDS
Ain't nothin' affirmative about ur actions
'Til the people get paid!

---Reflection---

2 sevens 2gether
Like time indefinite
Try 2 catch the glass
B4 it falls
Without a frown
Can U turn up the stereo?
I wanna play U this old song
It's about love

Did we remember to water the plants 2day?
I 4got to look up at the moon because
I was 2 busy
I was 2 busy lookin' at U, baby

Still, it's nice 2 know
That when r bodies wear out
We can get another
What does that one thing have 2 do
With the other one?
I don't know
I was just thinking about my mother

U know what?
Turn the stereo back down
Ain't nothing worse than an ole' worn-out love song
Tell me do U like my hair this way?
Remember all the way back in the day...

When we would comapre whose afro was the roundest?

Mirror tiles
Above the bed
Fishing nets and posters
All over the walls
Sometimes I just wanna go
Sit on the stoop and
Play my guitar
And just watch all
All the cars go by


...nuff said for tonight...I'm letting myself fall to sleep with this jam on repeat...

Peace out, yo.

(0) comments


Friday, April 09, 2004
 
CRAZINESS...

Well, I can't wait to get back to my home church this weekend. Let's see, it all started the weekend of March 20-21 when I was at the IPA State Percussion Finals at Ben Davis High School. Center Grove's show stole it...just amazing...very technically solid and wonderful musical choices...including some Forty-Six & 2...which if you've never heard an entire percussion ensemble perform, you're missing something! WOW!

Then, the following weekend, we filmed the WGI Dayton Percussion Regional at Centerville High School. You've gotta see Centerville's show That's a Stretch...kind of a mixture of new wave jazz and pop with stunning visuals that make you want to play with a rubber band for hours on end after you watch it, while humming the intoxicating melody.

Finally, this past weekend we filmed the MEPA Championships with both percussion and Winter Guard units competing.

:::Final Tally:::
--Total performances watched and filmed: 324--
--Total hours worked just in those weekends: 74--
--Total number of DVD Masters needed: 11--
--Total number of DVD's needed to duplicate: 324 and counting--
--When I expect to finally get some sleep: Mid-June--

Man...I love what I do...it rocks!

And, it's also Good Friday...praise you, my God for what You did for me...what I could never do for myself...and what You continue to show me about what Your love really means...my life is nothing without You. Help remeind me of that every moment of the day, because my human, sheeplike stupidity doesn't allow me to. I love You, Jesus...help me to love You more.

Peace out, yo.

(0) comments