Thursday, May 20, 2010

Today I Found Out

Here's a little slice of awesome.

Today I found out about "Today I Found Out." It's a website designed to "give you interesting tidbits to talk about at cocktail parties or around the water cooler at work" (That's kind of a lame description, but the rest of the site makes up for that).

But seriously. If you are interested in augmenting your brain with borderline worthless information, then TIFO is for you.

Oh, and if you exclusively talk about things that you read on TIFO, you will never have to end a story awkwardly by saying, "then I found $5."

Tuesday, May 18, 2010

Quoting Satan

Have you ever seen this bumper sticker?

Well, I'm reading Paradise Lost right now and I keep thinking that this quote is going to pop up somewhere. Satan gets way more words in Paradise Lost than he does in the Bible, so if it was going to be anywhere I would guess that it would be in Milton's work.

I imagine the quote going something like this:
"Whence and what are thou, execrable Shape,
That dar'st, through grim and terrible, advance
Thy miscreated front athwart my way
To yonder gates? Through them I mean to vote pro-choice,
That be assured, without leave asked of thee."
Of course in this passage "vote pro-choice" is a simple indicative, not the imperative that the bumper sticker would have you believe. But I think that the people who thought up the bumper sticker aren't all that concerned with context.

Oh, and I don't think that any pro-choicers are going to be dissuaded of their current position because someone's car was garnished with a made-up quote from Satan designed to lambaste their beliefs. That's just silly.

Saturday, May 15, 2010

Going Green in the 'Hood

This is a great story about one young man who has a dream about making a difference in the community that he loves. And it's not just about "going green"; it's about giving kids something positive to do who otherwise might be doing something negative.

Champ is only twenty-years-old, but he has a big vision. That is exactly what impoverished communities need: young men and women who rise up from inside the community and have a plan to change the negative aspects of their surroundings. These are the people that we affluent Americans need to identify and contribute to both with our time and resources.

Friday, May 14, 2010

How I Get My News

From the generation who who grew up on television, lusts over the iPad, and has watched the Toyota "Swagger Wagon" commercial on YouTube 40-50 times, comes a new way to remain privy to current events. If this technology was available 15 years ago, I wouldn't have had to clip articles from the antiquated newspapers, but rather embed these video into a Microsoft Office 2010 PowerPoint presentation. Dang. My junior-high afflictions were off the charts.

So, here is how I am staying abreast of the ongoing financial crisis in Greece. I am waiting for Episode 3 with almost as much anticipation as the Fringe season finale. Almost.

Saturday, May 08, 2010

Friday, May 07, 2010

Pastor Styles

Here are two styles that pastors enjoy sporting on Sunday mornings.

First is the style I have coined the "British Politician" or sometimes simply the "Casual Politician." It consists of a full suit or a sport coat with a lightly colored/patterned, open collared shirt. This look has found its way into many churches who want their pastors to be more "approachable."

Second is the style I like to call the "Substitute Teacher." Typically black slacks are accompanied by a short-sleeved dress shirt and a tie. Judgement can be rendered about his church's giving habits because this look tends to mean the pastor can't afford an air-conditioning unit (or at least that's what it meant in the 70's).

Sunday, May 02, 2010

52 Books in 52 Weeks: April Report

I managed to finish five books in the month of April. Here they are:

All of these books were good, but I would hardly recommend sitting down and reading through all of them. The How and Why of Love and Evangelical Ethics were both books about ethical issues facing the Christian today. I would recommend reading the introductory chapters which deal with constructing a proper lens to view ethical issues through, but the discussions of the actual issues themselves are good to have as a resource, not to ingest in one sitting.

Biblical Interpretation is another good resource. But like the others, don't sit down and plow through the 600 pages. It is utterly dry and tedious. It is good to have on hand though as a history of the interpretation of Scripture.

How to Read a Book was a very helpful book. I found the discussion about assessing a book and giving it the time that it is worth quite profitable. Often times I plunge into a book without thinking much about the nature or quality of the book. This is an error and will hopefully be corrected as I seek to become a more active reader.

Finally, Desiring God is, hands down, the best book I have ever read. I encountered it for the first time five years ago and I did not realize the immense impact it has had on my perspective and world view. Reflecting on the discussions in the book for the second time was incredibly beneficial. I identify myself fully as a Christian Hedonist.

So, I am at twelve books now for 2010. Forty more doesn't seem like that big of a deal. In addition to the books listed above, I have read: