Sunday, December 31, 2006

happy 2007

december has not been a good month for me, health-wise. after a bad cold and laryngitis, i just spent the night getting blindsided by a stomach bug or food poisoning. puking = not my idea of a way to pass a night. i'm tired and i feel like i'm one big rusty hinge. doesn't look like i'll be doing too much celebrating tonight.


here's hoping the upcoming year has better stuff in store for all.

Thursday, December 28, 2006


been resting up after our annual christmas extravaganza. my family rocks hard. for the last few days, i thought the lack of sleep had triggered a relapse of my cold. i was feeling a tad bitter about that. fortunately, copious amounts of vitamin c and law and order episodes seem to have cured me.

i was able to try out the nintendo wii while we were in carlsbad - it is pretty entertaining. engaged in a little 5 on 5 playground ball with my cousins on christmas day. actually it was more like we were attacking each other and sometimes we shot the basketball. i've to the bruises to prove it. still and all, it was a good time. here's our team photos. believe it or not, this is just a small fraction of my cousins, and we were able to play 5 on 5 basketball. we could play baseball with a full 9 players on each side if we wanted.

now i'm watching my brothers play video games (currently as storm troopers in star wars: battlefront. i got next game). good lazy holiday activities.

i went to my first party since i moved back to the bay. last week, it was a christmas party. i thought it to be a landmark occasion. it was at a new friend's house in oakland. there is nothing quite so daunting as walking in (by yourself) to a party, looking around the room and not knowing a soul. that would have been a good night to have a party buddy. i pressed on though and eked out some good conversations. if only to prove to myself that i can make small talk with total strangers.

the christmas camp reunion party, held at my house was all right. after inviting 6 summers worth of counselors, a small fraction of them showed up. that was fine because if everyone came there would have been about 200 people. since i only worked one summer, i knew about 6 people out of the 20 that came. it was good to revive some old jokes, and relive some old memories.

so much extroversion! it's quite unlike me. i suppose the last few days of not leaving my house have made up for that.

who's who?

i'm pretty sure al davis became a zombie and no one noticed. judge for yourself. the owner of the oakland raiders is on the left and the host of "tales from the crypt" is on the right.

Friday, December 22, 2006


man, i hate christmas shopping. a lot.
though i waited things out today, and braved it at about 7. wasn't too bad. and i'm done, so that is a load off my mind.
so, christmas shopping in the evening isn't so bad, but christmas food shopping at safeway in the evening sucks. everyone is loading up for bear. we're talking 50 items or more.

the interview went pretty well. i liked the 5(!) people that interviewed me. we talked for an hour and half, and i didn't feel totally drained afterward, so that was good. i like what they're doing. of course, as i think back over the conversation, i do the inevitable editing and revising of my answers. better to just let it be. it would be cool to work in the city. suburban life is quiet, and feels far away from things of substance. we'll see how things turn out.

also, it was quite miraculous that i was able to sustain such a long conversation. i couldn't talk at all on friday. after five days of practicing the discipline of silence for a few days and getting sick of rooibos tea, my voice had mostly recovered. i'm still a little hoarse, but it's not such a big deal anymore.

i'm hosting a camp christmas reunion party tomorrow night. i don't know how that happened, really. i'm not someone who really thrives on inviting a ton of people i don't know very well into my house. but the chance to practice some hospitality is something i'm looking forward too. and it'll be good to catch up with a few friends i haven't seen in a long long time.

super boring post. i find myself wanting to go into hibernation.

p.s. i wish i was hanging out in a smoky st. louis hotel bar listening to a blind old man play christmas classics while drinking some mysterious bartender's concoction with pals like i was 'bout this time last year.

Wednesday, December 20, 2006


sitting around... thinking about possible interview questions.
putting the best foot forward tomorrow from 11-1 in SF. eek.
feeling good, though. feels like i'm moving in the direction of God's calling. and that ain't bad at all.

(btw, this isn't with the jesuits. it's with a diffrent organization, this time working w/ at-risk youth in the city)

Sunday, December 17, 2006

christmas thoughts

no more "i'm sick and cranky" posts. i'm sick of them.

after church tonight, there was another christmas choral concert, this time with full orchestra. since my actual christmas holiday involves familial chaos, i thought i'd soak in the christmas festivites tonight. it was quite beautiful, a wonderful time of meditating on the miracle of the incarnation. this song was sung. i didn't like this particular musical arrangement, as it sounded too lighthearted for the actual lyrics...

O come, O come, Emmanuel,
And ransom captive Israel,
That mourns in lonely exile here
Until the Son of God appear.

O come, Thou Day-spring, come and cheer
Our spirits by Thine advent here;
Disperse the gloomy clouds of night,
And death’s dark shadows put to flight.

Rejoice! Rejoice!
Emmanuel shall come to thee, O Israel.

there are times when you really feel the "in-between-ness" of the reality we are in. that Jesus, our Emmanuel, has already come and done these things. and we still mourn, live in exile, and in darkness. we are thankful that he has come, that he lived among us. there is much to rejoice and be thankful for, and much to mourn. we long for him to return.

"Do not be afraid. I bring you good news of great joy that will be for all the people. Today in the town of David a Savior has been born to you; he is Christ the Lord." Luke 2:10-11


well, i'm in that in between phase where you feel mostly okay but if you over do things, you could get sick all over again. stupid cold. it's really cramping my style. i still don't really have a voice, which is troublesome. i have a job interview on wednesday. not with the jesuit folk, for those in the know; but a different organization altogether. it involves working w/ youth in the mission district of san francisco. hopefully i won't be so hoarse then. but i'm so sick of drinking so much tea and other liquids; not to mention not leaving the house and watching many hours of television. my eyeballs would be dried out if i wasn't drinking so much water.

Friday, December 15, 2006


how can i sound so awful, but feel better than i did yesterday?

oh man

things have taken a turn for the worse. a night of coughing has rendered my voice into a crackly mess, closely resembling a 12 year old boy hitting puberty. at least i am being entertained during this time.

here's a law and order plot synopsis, just so you have something else to consider besides sickly me.
Law & Order "Collision" A mentally disturbed suspect refuses to take his antidepressant medicine, rendering him incapable of standing trial for murder. CC Stereo

Thursday, December 14, 2006

another sick day...

three law and order reruns and counting...

hoping to leave the house soon.

Wednesday, December 13, 2006

convert or die! (to be read aloud in the "skate or die!" voice from the game 720)

i continue to feel under the weather. the cold medicine makes me groggy. which means that i spend the day in my pajamas watching loads of law and order reruns. which isn't too different than when i'm not sick, i just change out of my pajamas on those days.

i try not to get too worked up over things - you know, my fragile constitution and all. but then i read about this and i think my head might explode. Click here to read the whole article, if you dare. here's a the intro, just to whet your curiousity...

"Liberal and progressive Christian groups say a new computer game in which players must either convert or kill non-Christians is the wrong gift to give this holiday season and that Wal-Mart, a major video game retailer, should yank it off its shelves."

just to make it clear: i am upset that a game like this even exists, and i agree the game should not be sold at wal-mart or anywhere else.

Tuesday, December 12, 2006

unfortunate side effects

bought some throat drops on the way to the airport the other day. i'd popped a few when i saw this. kind of put me off using more of them. sticking to tea and honey.

snap back to reality, oh there goes gravity

I'd have posted sooner, for all my vancouver demographic, but it appears that a week of extroversion has given me a sore throat and the beginnings of a cold. thus i have slept for 11-12 hour stretches of time for the last two nights. i think it's working.

two occurrences of note on my way back to southern climes:
1) at the seattle airport, the security lady at the metal detectors seemed VERY skeptical of whether or not i was actually the same person as in my passport photograph. seeing as the picture is about 9 years old, i guess i could see her point. all i could say was, "i have more hair now." and she added, "yes, and you are wearing spectacles but you aren't in the picture." (who says spectacles now? people who wear bifocals?) this exchange followed by an awkward silence as she continued to look at me and then look down at my passport. there wasn't really anything else i could say, so i just stood there and tried to look non-terrorist like.

has anyone seen the movie "the jackal"? it's a really awful movie with richard gere and bruce willis as the assassin "the jackal." basically he wears a variety of really bad hairpieces and fake facial hair because he is a "master of disguise." is that what this woman was wondering about me? i mean, i know i don't have a particularly nice passport photo, but come on.

2) while i waited at the curb for my brothers to pick me up, i saw this guy, who i consider to be the ugliest man in baseball. he's scary! add to that, he is enormous. i cowered by my suitcase.

as for my sojourn in vancouver and seattle, it did my heart much good to see many loved faces, have many good conversations and be in familiar surroundings. i haven't laughed that hard in a while. the only hard thing is that it wasn't enough time. it's never enough. sigh. i long for the day that there are no more goodbyes.

Tuesday, December 05, 2006

reverse deja vu

the act of beginning to tell someone a story in person and then discovering that they had already read it on your blog.

also: exhausted. but also exceedingly happy.
extrovert for a day.

Monday, December 04, 2006

to narnia and the north

killing time in the smallest coffee shop in west seattle, if not the world. waiting for my friends to get home from work.
i'm so tired. i was up late packing and then i was so excited about my trip i couldn't sleep. meanwhile, my brother played video games into the wee hours of the morning. we're a bunch of insomniacs. working on about 4 hours of sleep. i wonder if anyone will notice if i doze off in this chair. considering that the other 3 patrons are within 6 feet of me, i'd say yes.
despite the tiredness, i'm so excited to be here. friends galore!
the grey clouds of seattle don't dampen my spirit. in fact i find this weather comforting, cozy like a old comforter. this is the fall season i know, not the unremitting sunshine of the bay area. now, note that i say i don't like that because i most definitely enjoy the brightness. it's just different.

Sunday, December 03, 2006

happy advent

i went to church tonight for the first time in a while. i'd been stuck working the sunday night shift, so quitting solved that problem quite nicely (though i continue to work for them on a very part-time basis). it was wonderful to be there. i look forward to getting more settled and connected.

after the weekly community dinner, we celebrated the beginning of advent with the annual "hanging of the greens," a night of christmas choral music. choirs of all ages performed, and also led the congregation in caroling. it was so so so much fun, the perfect way to begin the advent season. the 12-part audience/choir participatory rendition of the 12 days of christmas is awesome.

oh, and God? if you ever read my blog, i really really hope there are kids choirs all over the place in heaven because they are one of my most favorite hilarious things to watch on this earth. plus small children dancing around in the aisles, jumping and spinning until they are dizzy and almost falling over is endlessly entertaining.
the approximate composition of your average children's choir, ages 5-8:
the one kid with a tie, whose shirt defies the physical laws of being tucked in
one or two smart alec kids that are either waving their arms in the air or singing in funny voices
3-4 that aren't paying attention
2-3 that are shell shocked from being in front of so many people
1-3 kids that are hamming it up waving at their parents
4 kids that are totally focused on the teacher and singing their hearts out
pretty much one of my favorite occurrences at church

at the reception afterward, i engaged small children in awkward conversation when i complimented them on their singing. basically i ask them questions that progressively get more outlandish and preposterous until they either smile or run away. it's as funny as you would guess it to be. and if you don't think it's funny then why are you friends with me?

on another note, i am heading north tomorrow. seattle and vancouver, here i come. woohoo!

Wednesday, November 29, 2006

usa, a-okay

I watched miracle last night. it's about the 1980 "miracle on ice" when the us hockey team beat ussr in the olympics. it's your run-of-the-mill sports flick. formula: authoritarian coach, plucky little team with a lot of heart, intimidating rivals. but i like sports, so that's okay. half the time i think sports are another anesthetic or distraction from reality, like the roman circus of old. and the other half of the time, i love how sports can bring people together and how much fun it is to play and watch. depends on the context of it, as is true of everything else in life.

as for the movie and event it documents, i was surprised at how much this hockey game meant in terms of the world politics and the morale of america at the time. it was the us vs. the menacing soviet union, and the game came to symbolize the confrontation between these two power. better than actual nuclear warfare i guess. what if the us had lost? i wonder if things would have unfolded differently. sometimes a game is just a game and sometime it isn't. who's to know?

anyway, it made me think of other cold war era, bordering on american propaganda movies that i like. which i will now discuss, but will have little meaning for people not well versed in pop culture. in no particular order:
red dawn - america is invaded! this movie is every survivalist's fantasy. and who should fend off the enemy in guerrilla warfare but the 80s brat pack stars as high school students? there's something for everyone in red dawn. this movie once held the distinction in the guinness book of world records as most violent movie, with an act of violence occurring on an average of every 2.33 seconds. go wolverines!

Rocky 4 - dude. this might be the top cold war movie ever though. rocky's got his american flag boxing trunks, and ivan drago is so evil, he has a black mouthguard. and rocky's post fight speech singlehandedly inspired mikhail gorbachev to enact the practice of glasnost and perestroika programs that brought an end to communism. seriously.

other memorable films:
top gun (duh)
spies like us
hunt for red october
war games

time after time

this song popped up on my ipod today. it made me immediately remember this movie. and then i tried not to burst out laughing while i was riding the BART train. though i did smile crazily to myself. it's one of the silliest awesome dances ever. it would be awesome to break out at a wedding reception.

repetitive motions

i spent an hour today tying knots on plastic bags. the bags contained food for to be distributed to kids in the oakland and berkeley schools. the food is not for a lunch program, but intended to sustain them through the weekends. interesting, somthing i had not considered before. i figured that this opportunity to volunteer might be a better way to meet people rather than in awkward small group settings (which have been documented on this blog). plus, i want to volunteer, as a good use for all this time that i have.

i was glad to volunteer and felt like i was able to help, not like in other previous volunteer experiences where there are too many hands and i ended up feeling useless and frustrated. we bagged 800 bags of food. so the part of meeting people didn't happen so much, as we (about 20-30 people) were plugged into an assembly line, complete with rolling conveyor belt to pass the bags down the line. in fact, the air of urgency with which everyone worked kind of threw me for a loop. i was late though, so i'm not sure if they did any introduction type thing or if everyone already knew each other. mostly i wondered if this need to go superfast was an American thing. i got a ride back to the BART with the guy from my church who heads up this organization and he seemed pretty cool and i learned more about what they're doing.

Monday, November 27, 2006


i watched this movie last week. borrowing dvds from the library is one of the best things ever.

the quick plot synopsis: Stanley is a perfectly adjusted, conservative trans-sexual who’s about to take the final step to becoming Bree, the woman he always wanted to be - until he finds out that he is the parent of a 17 year old son. Afraid to tell the rebellious teen-ager the truth, he embarks on a journey with him that will challenge and change both their lives.

i found it quite moving. felicity huffman certainly deserved her oscar nomination for this role. i thought she was amazing. she didn't simply act as herself, as a woman. she had to act as a man that was acting as a woman. i often forgot that she was a woman. i really did see her as bree. the movie is not so much about the issue of being transgender, but about human relationships and how people grow and change.

wheels, baby

there's a freighter somewhere between here and japan with my car on it. a honda fit, the sport model. blue, just like in the picture. it's a cool little car. in the meantime i pound the pavement and mooch rides from my mom.

where did the year go?

i don't understand how it's now almost december. time passes strangely...

my goal (besides the immediate and ever present goal of finding a job) is to survive the holidays. that's my slogan for the next month. so, one down and one to go. i've already caught up on my sleep lost from thanksgiving. i did get to see my cousin beat streetfighter 2 in 45 minutes. he beat the first 9 guys in about 15 minutes and then the last two gave him some trouble. i think my family is in timewarp back to 1993. only now after the games are done, we go out to bars. so not my cup of tea at all. wondering, as ever, how to connect with my family.

Wednesday, November 22, 2006

oh right

yeah, it's thanksgiving tomorrow. i still don't feel back in the swing of american holidays. driving to LA tomorrow for the celebration. typical family gathering. which, if i've told you anything about my family, you will know it is complete chaos. i bought ear plugs. somehow i never thought to do that ever before. thank goodness for little bits of foam to stick in your ears so you can get some rest.

personal grooming

i got a haircut today. i haven't gotten it cut since june, my hair was a bit out of control. walked down to the salon where my mom goes. i've known this hairdresser since i was in junior high, beginning with an mom-enforced and ill-advised perm for my 8th grade graduation. no, i do not want to talk about it.

anyway, we chatted as usual, catching up on her grandkids and where i've been. she's a church-going lady. we've talked about many religious-type things in the past. she lit up when i told her i had a masters in christian studies and said she wanted to pick my brain about the end times and the book of revelation. and about the middle east stuff. and the da vinci code. and what i thought about the ted haggard scandal. not all at once of course, our conversation meandered in these directions. we connected on some things, i think. and missed each other on other points. i really like her, and i spoke my mind more than i would to a more casual acquaintance. as usual, i am aware that my views may not really jive with, say, the majority middle class America. so it makes me cautious about what i say to people. i mostly just feel awkward. but even if i might know more about a subject than other people, i feel the responsiblity to present whatever knowledge that is with a gentle spirit, rather than hit them over the head with it, because HOW COULD YOU POSSIBLY THINK THAT WAY? though the second option has been very tempting but of course, it could also be applied to my own views from someone else. it has been an interesting journey thus far.

Tuesday, November 21, 2006

today's cool moment

sitting outside during my work break.
sun shining through the milky clouds.
drinking some kick ass french roast coffee.
eating an awesome pumpkin muffin from the bakery across the way.
listening to stevie wonder's smooth voice in his definitive collection on my ipod.
reading "reading lolita in tehran."

a good convergence of different factors and taking the time to enjoy the moment.
there are worries to be sure, but small blessings also.

Monday, November 20, 2006

life's little instructions

today i was cleaning in the back room of the coffee shop (i finish up there this week). i saw that there were books sitting in one of the cubbyholes for our general use. being the book worm that i am, i check out the books more closely. the title on one of them: "so you want to be a lesbian?" whaaaaa? with a title like that, it was hard to remember what the other book was. i already knew that a few of the other employees are lesbians. i just didn't think any of them needed a how-to manual. hell, i'm straight and i wouldn't mind an instruction manual for my life.

Sunday, November 19, 2006

an afternoon walk

walked down to the library on saturday. it was warm enough that i actually broke a sweat (this probably angers my seattle/vancouver readership. oh well). i remembered to bring my camera along and nurture my amateur photography skills. it took me twice as long to get to my destination. but it was good for my soul to look more closely at my surroundings.

Pied Beauty

GLORY be to God for dappled things—
For skies of couple-colour as a brinded cow;
For rose-moles all in stipple upon trout that swim;
Fresh-firecoal chestnut-falls; finches’ wings;
Landscape plotted and pieced—fold, fallow, and plough;
And all trades, their gear and tackle and trim.

All things counter, original, spare, strange;
Whatever is fickle, freckled (who knows how?)
With swift, slow; sweet, sour; adazzle, dim;
He fathers-forth whose beauty is past change:
Praise him.
- Gerald Manley Hopkins

Thursday, November 16, 2006

taking a new tack

From Wikipedia: A tack or coming about is the maneuvre by which a sailing boat or yacht turns its bow through the wind so that the wind changes from one side to the other.

after considering the circumstances of the last few days, i quit the coffee shop job today. with my old beater car, i figured i could just get a job to pass the time during the job search. post car-death, i realized that i need to get some real cash flow going. so, now i sell low grade plutonium for nuclear weaponry (and time machines). JUST KIDDING, DEPARTMENT OF HOMELAND SECURITY, WHO IS CONSTANTLY SCANNING THE INTERNET FOR KEY WORDS!! i'll temp, or get some awful seasonal retail job that will make me want to punch shoppers in the head. actually, i would want to do that to people who are buying coffee too, so maybe i have anger issues. having something concrete to work for (the car and upkeep of said car) is more immediate as a goal, not so much my search for vocation. so i hang up the apron again. oh well.

actually today, i found a posting for this volunteer organization run through the jesuits. it seems pretty cool, area director for a year-long volunteer/spiritual formation program for recent college grads. so i sent a email for more details. we'll see. i'd describe more specifically, but i don't really feel like showing up on any google searches.

Wednesday, November 15, 2006

sweet relief

my class is done and done. thank goodness.

i've learned some stuff that i will probably be glad to know at a later point. i saw myself improve as an editor over the duration of the class. but when i sat and listened to the teacher describe the need to draw an arrow for editing purposes, i thought to myself, "i can't believe i paid to hear someone talk about drawing an arrow." really, any amount is too much.

Tuesday, November 14, 2006


things? not that great. could be better.

started at the coffee shop last week. it's all right. they make good stuff. i'm new and awkward and learning.

applied to work at my church. after a follow-up phone call to them with no response, and then going to church and noting that the job posting was no longer in the bulletin, i called again yesterday and got a message today that they had already hired someone. right about the time that i turned the application in. it seems to me simple and courteous enough to make one phone call and let me know what the situation was. or an email. i'm just pissed off and disappointed right now. and unsure of what to do next.

oh, and there is no available car right now (one of our cars died, hence the previous post) so i feel like i'm 15 again and stuck at home. my brother and i have to get our mom to drive us to the BART station (that's subway around here), since we have to share.

and wondering if this coffee shop is worth it since the other job fell through and it's kind of a pain to get out to the store since, as i said, i have no car.

aaaannnnnnndd, i have a final tonight in my copyediting class. the only upside here is that my class is OVER. i would study more, but i don't care.

when it rains, it pours.

Friday, November 10, 2006

horns of a dilemma

today my parents suggested buying me a new car. they'd pay the down payment and then i'd take over once i got a job. they said it would build up my credit rating.

i should be glad for this generous offer. they have been more than generous thus far, as i am living here rent free and eating the food. is this one of those cases where i should just accept this offer, so we have a point of connection? we have precious few of those in the first place.

my initial reaction was negative. i'd like to live simply. a car seems like a big headache to me and i hate driving. yet it is a necessary evil where i am living right now to get to any place i'd like to be. and this whole credit rating thing - i could really not give a damn about that stuff. i wonder if that will come back to get me. so i am quite frustrated and wondering when my life will take more of a definite shape. it remains fluid and vague. i lack motivation, inspiration and anything else that ends in -tion.

Saturday, November 04, 2006

my youngest brother is home for the weekend. it's nice to have him here. especially if it means that we listen to a cd of hall and oates' greatest hits (such as "maneater" and "private eyes") in the car on the way to his favorite taqueria. you can bet that i copied those songs into my itunes once we got back home.

let's go crazy, broadway style!!

those in vancouver: please clear your couches/futons/social calendars for yours truly between december 5th - 9th. it's just a month away! woo! i'd like something crazy like this to happen:

please prepare accordingly.

Friday, November 03, 2006

happy birthday wishes

today is lara's birthday. if we still lived in vancouver (and conveniently the same house), i would take you to burgoo or savary island pie company for a birthday meal, and have a treat from st. moritz patisserie (my mouth is watering as i type this). and i would babysit sienna so you and jeff could have a date night. and then the next day maybe play chickenfoot with dane and jane. we could wear funny hats, like so.

when she's not being a fabulous mom to the cutest baby ever, lara also models at lighthouse park, like so. she throws some mean pottery, pours a cool rosetta leaf, and is a good friend. her kryptonite is chocolate, but that is the case for many of us. hope the 27th year is a good one for you and your family!

Thursday, November 02, 2006


the computer was in the shop. had a ding in the casing that kept me from shutting it easily (perhaps because of me being careless, not really sure how i did it though). this time around, apple supplied me with some new casing and trackpad. gratis. really, why would you not own an apple?

Sunday, October 29, 2006

conference over

the conference was quite amazing. my heart is full and also broken in new ways. still processing. will post more in-depth thoughts soon.

Friday, October 27, 2006

progress (say it the canadian way! pro-gress)

well, i just got hired as a barista at a cool little coffee shop in the berkeley/oakland area. also investigating about another part-time job at my church. and thus ends some of my free time. but it'll be good to be a contributing member of society again, even if i don't get to sleep in anymore. and eventually, i hope to live in over there, that'll take some saving. but i think it's good temporary situation until, you know, I FIGURE OUT WHAT TO DO WITH MY LIFE. or something like that.

i'm off to berkeley again this evening. the church is putting on this jesus and evangelical conference. i am quite excited about it. speakers from egypt, india, el salvador, and uganda (this particular speaker was at the screening last night and added a lot of insight to the film and updates on the situation there). what do voices of the chuch from the majority world have to say to the church in north america? i remember reading at regent about how this conversation needed to take place, and i am excited to see it actually happening.

and to be perfectly honest, it's nice to actually have something to do on the weekend.

Thursday, October 26, 2006

invisible children

my church had a free screening of the movie "invisible children" tonight. powerful story, overwhelming images. i' m still working though my feelings and thoughts in reaction to the movie. as you may already know, i've got a huge soft spot in my heart for kids. and to see these kids in northern uganda wandering around as orphans, recovering from their abduction and being forced to fight as rebels and fending for themselves ... it greatly grieved my heart. and that these atrocities have been going on for so long while the rest of the world has remained largely ignorant and inactive further saddened me.

the other day my brother declared to me that he had very little faith in humanity; he believes that we're just going to keep on going right ahead and destroy the earth. i was surprised at how sure he sounded of this. i don't know. i just don't agree with him. i still have hope. even in the midst of all this suffering.

more thoughts tomorrow. see the movie if you have the chance.

go bears

last saturday, pre-head implosion, i went to my first college football game ever. at my alma mater, gwu, we just had an underachieving basketball team.

anyway, my bro, a cal alum, took me to see the cal bears play the uw huskies. to make things more interesting (and much cheaper), we hiked up tightwad hill. for a more complete history of the hill read this (it's a good read, even if you're not into sports). for those that bypass the link, tightwad hill overlooks memorial stadium (kind off like how people can sit on the roof and watch cubs games at wrigley field). not only do you get a great free view of the game, you also get an amazing panoramic view of the san francisco bay. it is scenery that i love deeply, right up there with the mountains north of vancouver. and we were able to see the cal marching band play their halftime tribute to tv theme songs and their formations. the best was the saved by the bell theme song and they formed a large bell. so unexpected and creative - that must be why they're at cal. nevertheless, the band is pretty cool, one year they did a weezer tribute for their halftime program.

remember, of course, that we are in berkeley. so there is this benevolent flair of anarchy and cheerful oddness that colors the whole scene on the hill (and most sporting events in general). there is no way to easily or gracefully ascend this very steep hill, as it is covered with slippery dead foliage and loose dirt eroded by past spectators. as people kicked back and drank their beer through the game, i wondered how they could possibly make it down the hill without injuring themselves.

we ended up next to a man armed with several coolerrs that had obviously been to many games, as he had staked out a great and stable spot on a ledge formed by the roots of two trees. he grinned with his crooked teeth for most of the game as he gulped down several cans of natty light ice then crushing the cans and throwing them past us down the hill when cal failed to perform to his standards (besides that though, the hill is surprisingly fairly clean - those hippies pick up after themselves). he kindly shared two cans of beer with my brother, who in turn shared them with me. mmmm... natty light. it has its own unique flavor that seems to complement football watching well.

twenty feet over, a pair of men paced and nervously smoked their joints, cursing the cal quarterback, the coach, and the entire cal football program nonstop throughout the whole game. i have never seen such an angry stoned person before. if that's what he was like when he was high, then i'd hate to see him when he wasn't high. our natty light friend clumsily sauntered over at one point to talk to them and when he came back pulled out some cigarette paper, but not before sharing with us again - passing my brother a pinch of tiny green bud and leaves. eric quickly stuffed them into his pocket. generosity occurs in unexpected ways and places.

cal went on to win in in thrilling style with an overtime victory, 31-24. it was hard not to get too excited and jump up and down, with the risk of sliding down the hill and all. i just may be a convert to college football fandom.

Wednesday, October 25, 2006


this made me laugh and laugh. apparently, they're modeled after these nbc "the more you know" ads, but i don't remember them. for more ads, go to they're pretty funny.

long distance fun

i talked to this kid on the phone today. the conversation was witty, incisive and thought-provoking.


as i consider my time of inactivity, i am surprised at how hard it is for me to practice sabbath. well, it's never been quite easy for me to do so. the pressure to be productive and all. even when sitting still or alone, there are loads of ways to keep the mind and spirit from resting. believe me, i am quite good at this - the not-really-resting thing.

yet that is the rhythm that God sets for us - it is not only good but necessary to rest one day out of seven. i wonder then, how we came to our own rhythm of the 5-day work week. i guess before we complain, we ought to remember that 6 days of work used to be the norm. 2 days of rest? well that seems extravagant, and yet we are more harried than ever. i suppose it is because we are such a pleasure-seeking society that we work so hard at filling our time off with activities.

i decided that i would not check my email on sundays. i spend way too much time on my computer doing nothing in particular in the first place, so i thought this would be a good place to start. it was hard. i had to unplug my computer and put it on the other side of the house. i was out for most of the day anyway (doing a walkathon despite my monstrous headache, yeah, real smart i know) and it was still hard. i wouldn't have been able to do it if i had been home. sometime i'd like to do sabbath the way orthodox jews do - no travelling, no appliances, no anything. such a marked departure from day to day life that reminds us of the presence of God.

Tuesday, October 24, 2006


i just finished meeting with my spiritual director. not coincidentally, my headache has lifted. (cue choirs of angels)

time to not live in my head so much and make myself crazy. time to get a job, even if it is pouring coffee for yuppies. sometimes they even tip well. the unemployment ennui needs to be abated. i will also buy a truckload of excedrin headache medicine in the event this happens again, and continue meeting with my spiritual director.

of course i have to go to my editing class in an hour, so the headache could return. i'm supposed to get my midterm back. headache is probable.

i have stories to tell though, funny ones, and it is annoying me that i have not blogged them. soon, faithful blog readers, soon.
the headache, it has returned. i think this hoohah might be solved by drinking a cup of joe. i stubbornly refuse. i guess i've never gotten myself addicted to anything because i just hate being controlled by/dependent on something else.

more when i can handle thinking again.

my brain hurts

i've just come out of a 2-day long headache. some kind of combination of lack of caffeine, dehydration and any number of other factors all came together to put my skull in a vise, and then kick my brain with steel-toed boots. awful. holla if you hear me.

Friday, October 20, 2006

something kinda different

i felt bad publishing my mental angst. of course, that's what a blog is for. so i googled theology to see if anything funny came up and i found this.


it's indian summer in the bay area. meaning, it's 83 degrees today. join me in saying "what the hell?" there is no hint of crispness in the air, though the sun is setting earlier and the leaves are slowly turning. i haven't been here in a while, so i can't remember if this is normal or not. my friend said her azaleas are blooming because they think it's spring. sometimes i enjoy it and sometimes i wouldn't mind a little brisk autumn rain, a la vancouver.

in an effort to keep too many of my brain cells from dying, i continue to patronize the library resources. here's a few things i've seen or been thinking about lately.

rented this movie. it's an old akira kurosawa movie. he's a classic japanese filmmaker, and a few of his films were made into american westerns. i don't know if this is a particularly popular one; i just kept running across references to it and finally decided to find out why. there are all sorts of cinematic elements to this movie that would appeal to film geeks, but unless you're into that kind of thing, i don't think you'd really be into this movie. but it has a lot to say about how people perceive things and tell story. a man is killed; there are 3 different witness accounts of what happened. which one is true? no one can be fully objective. (for those that watch veronica mars, the first season episode where she is trying to find out what happened to her when she got roofied at the party and possibly raped - that story structure was a play on this movie) i often feel that tension when i write. i view an event one way because of who i am; another person can have a totally different perception of the same event because of who she is. is one of more right or true than the other?

i must really be into subtitled films because motorcycle diaries is the third movie i've talked about here and they're all subtitled. this one's about the early formative experiences of che guevara as he travelled around south america. the film is quite poignant, and the film appeals to the socialist in all of us in the desire to help the poor in society. of course, i don't agree with che's ideas about the necessity of an armed revolution. afterward, i really did want to hit the open road like he did. (plus the guy playing che is rather dreamy. that always helps draw people to the revolutionary cause. viva!)

then i read a book of wendell berry's essays and it make me want to move out to a farm and settle in for 20 years or so. you know, be connected with the land and all that. i'm so easily inflluenced these days - there are much worse things to be influencing me i suppose. it was "What are People For?" good stuff. i'm glad to finally get a chance to read him. today i interviewed at a coffee shop and listening to this woman talk so passionately about the craft of roasting coffee made me think of him.

i had coffee with the mssions pastor the other day. a petite barely 5' tall filipino/japanese dynamo of social justice. an incredibly refreshing conversation as we shared our stories and the winding path both of us has taken to end up at this point. she understood the uncertainty and culture shock post-school kind of feeling. hoping hang out with her more. plus she really tight with the pastor of the chuch that anne lamott goes to - apparently they went through seminary together. from the stories anne lamott wrote about her, she sounds really cool. i'm volunteering for this walk-for-AIDS event that the church is helping sponsor this weekend. i figure hanging out with her more often would be a good thing and perhaps more effective to connect with other people as we serve togther. it gives more context (and perhaps shared perspectives) for me and other people than the small groups i have been to.

some friends go to this informal gathering once a month. several small groups get togther, have dinner, and someone shares a lesson. in discussing relationships, the language of finances in reference to people gave me much to consider. "investing" in someone, "spending" time with them were the terms bandied about the most. the meatphors were acknowledged, but not much was made of it either way. there are all sorts of expectations built into these concepts that i thought so odd to apply to people. because we are not commodities. if you "invest" in someone, are you then expecting a "return" or "payback"? how does this work in the scheme of God's economy (if economy is a word that really applies)? because i'm pretty sure he doesn't operate this way. and yet this kind of thing is deeply ingrained in all of us. my life coach says i have this chance to act differently with my family, yet to not expect anything back, the important thing is that i changed. and i am surprised at how little that really appeals to me.

hm, least lighthearted, most rambling post ever. i feel all jittery. this coffee i just bought had better be decaf or there is really going to be hell to pay.

Wednesday, October 18, 2006

abused by caffeine

after my midterm last night, i felt like treating myself. on the way home from berkeley, my bro and it hit up nation's, a local hamburger chain. (see that last phrase? it's called an appositive - a phrase that further describes a noun thus requiring a comma - at least i think that's what it is. grammar is kicking my ass, sticking my head in a toilet and giving me a swirly) i had some good pumpkin creme pie and some decaf coffee. a tasty combo. i couldn't fall asleep until 4 am. yeah, i'm pretty sure that coffee was not decaf. i know i have insomnia sometimes but that's just ridiculous. curse inattentive restaurant employees. at least my thoughts during the long caffeinated night of the soul gave me some time to think about stuff, which will be posted forthwith. check the blog obsessively.

secret authority?

i finally talked to someone in my class the other night (i'm shy and when i'm cranky -as i often am in that class - i don't feel much like talking, anyway). i got there a few minutes before class started to look over the style manual before the midterm; one woman was already in there. we ruefully admitted to each other the humble pie we'd been forced to eat because of the class. she asked me what i did. i gave her the quick schpiel, theology and art, yadda yadda yadda. to my surprise, she nodded in recognition and said that she also studied theology, in fact, she had studied to be a roman catholic priest for a while.

now you're wondering, isn't it only men that can be catholic priests? that's what i wondered too. at that point some other woman had arrived and they carried on the conversation. turns out she's part of some group that is working towards the ordination of women as priests in the catholic church. apparently she just got elected president or this group. and some women actually have been ordained. only it's all in secret because any person involved gets excommunicated. i don't really understand how they serve then, if this is all done in secret. she mentioned that she went to a home church, so in that setting it would be allowed. today i found a story NPR did about this movement. it's a pretty hot topic.

and i thought some of my friends had encountered resistance in their own denominations as they pursued a vocation of ministry. the woman breezily (with an steely undertone in her voice) described their goal to "just change one word in the canon." from "any baptized male can become a priest" to "any baptized person can become a priest." yeah, good luck with getting the church to changing the CANON. dang. and apparently her subcommittee was named the "ministry of irritation" (the monty python sketch jokes immediately leap to mind) that actively was speaking out to demand church reform.

don't really know what i think of all this. there's this big wide world out there.

Tuesday, October 17, 2006

probably not covered in supervised ministry class

for those that are considering being or are already pastors: at church last sunday, the associate pastor had to baptize a hawaiian baby girl with a 9-syllable last name (and because it's a hawaiian name there were lots of dashes, vowels and apostrophes in it) either he's got nerves of steel, or he must have practiced saying her name a a lot before the big day.

Saturday, October 14, 2006


mental note: next year in playoffs, don't forget how to hit. oh well. see you guys in april.

Friday, October 13, 2006

Banker to the Poor

Check out this article on the latest winner of the Nobel Peace Prize. He links the world peace with the reduction of poverty. interesting stuff. and he looks super stoked.

i'm trying to keep up on the news and read more, seeing as how i have the time to do so. i'm wondering if all the rest and free time i have right now is the time to make up for the last year of school, where i lived on red alert for 8 months. that just ocurred to me today. basically i didn't really practice the sabbath during that time. i feel like i just managed to finish before the wheels came off my wagon completely.

it also just occurred to me that i have yet to hold a typical 9-5 office job. i worked at the washington post, and that was a 6pm-2 am gig (awful, but it did have some perks). then i was a teacher which was a part-time schedule (you try filling a two hour block of time with 20 sixth graders twice a week"hey it's time for another video!"). worked at summer camp which is all sorts of fun and chaos. after that came being in youth ministry and that has a unique schedule all it's own (though i did have my own cubicle aread that i actually enjoyed). and then came three blurry mind/heart/life-altering years of grad school. this could have happened subliminally, after the editor at my magazine internship in college warned me against getting jobs that required me to wear panty hose (best thing that i learned there. best thing that i taught there? teaching another editor the difference between tupac shakur and notorious b.i.g. and showing her how to flash the west side sign).

and now... well, now i have this desire to work on the behalf of those on the margins, be a good steward of creation, and be more thoughtful about my faith. and i haven't the foggiest idea of how that will come about. and i can see all these different avenues to take, hear all these different cries for help in different forms, and i sit here under my parents' grape vine arbor like jonah under his shrub, stewing (i know that his stewing is totally different from my stewing, i just like that i'm sitting under this grapevine, plus i'm reading wendell berry when i'm not blogging so it's not all that bad).

Thursday, October 12, 2006


i heart douglas coupland. just finished this book. it's a good 'un. he takes things we take for granted in our culture, blows them up to super caricature cartoon level and in doing so, gives us a glimpse of the truth. it's a fun ride.
i've been thinking about a lot of things lately. too much to put on a blog because it becomes this place of mental vomit that doesn't necessarily make sense. but i have had several good conversations to help me untangle the many threads of thought.

the reacclimatization process continues. it comes to my attention at odd moments and in odd ways. like i said pop instead of soda once. or i wonder why the team leading the music during a church service put all the women singers way in the back of the stage. or why does todd agnew get the credit for writing a "new" song, "grace like rain" when it really is just "amazing grace" and he wrote a new 3-line chorus for it (this one REALLY tees me off, even though i have enjoyed other contemporary arrangements of old hymns).

or how very jarring it is to me when it is asked what the take-away lesson is from a passage of scripture; or the immediate measuring of oneself against scripture. this one i've been thinking about for a while. yes, one is to learn how to live from scripture. but to reduce one passage to one meaning? it seems to me that it chokes the Living Word; and it is turned into a public service announcement. it's like looking at an impressionist painting up too close, all you see is a bunch of paint blots; but back up to take in the whole picture and you see something of beauty. the bible paints this huge and vibrant picture of God and of creation and of relationship. i am wary of condensing this into one sentence summaries (tempting as it is). it's a subtle switch that eugene peterson describes, "No longer was I reading and asking 'What does this mean? How can I use this?" I was asking, 'How can I obey this? How can I get in on this?'" (Christ Plays in Ten Thousand Places, p. 64) these thoughs are definitely in progress.

and i spend more time mulling this over than studying for my editing class. but it's like reading instruction manuals. i red and after about 15 minutes, it is much too painful to continue. i hate this class. it's like one of the games in highlights magazine, you know that you read when you were a kid? spot the 6 things that are different in the two pictures. and i can't do it. that's what it feels like. so, you know, i have to come up with some other plans about what to do to earn money. somewhat demoralizing, yet enlightening at the same time. am looking into clown college. or truck driving school. or beautician school. let's conduct a poll: which one of these options would you like to see me pursue? or something else i haven't thought of yet?

Tuesday, October 10, 2006

born into brothels

i've been renting movies from the library. born into brothels is a movie i've been meaning to see for a long time now. it certainly deserved the academy award it won in 2005. it was beautiful to see these kids' faces light up as they begin to see the world around them in different ways and tell their own story. as the express their thoughts on the pictures they took, it occurred to me that this was probably the first time they were able to express their thoughts and opinions and be listened to, and probably the only place that it happened. it is amazing to see how intertwined these lives become.

Monday, October 09, 2006

o, canada

rather than call attention to the politically incorrect holiday we recognize in america that recalls some lost sailors, indigenous people and the following years of oppression, i would like to wish all five of my blog readers a happy thanksgiving, canadian style. note the cornucopia. mmm... cornucopia.

advantages of canadian thanksgiving: less commercialism than american thanksgiving, it's on a monday so if you play your cards right you can have up to maybe 7 thanksgiving-type meals with different people, it's earlier in the year so that's kind of cool, and it's in canada. thinking of thanksgiving makes me immediately crave green bean casserole. and mashed potatos and gravy. i've always been way more into the side dishes than the actual turkey.

things i am thankful for: it is 79 degrees outside, friends near and far, and the yankees lost in the playoffs while the a's won (a's second baseman marco "mr. clutch" scutaro, dh frank thomas aka "large gary coleman" and pitcher barry "dreamboat" zito in particular).

i am glad to actually have lived in canada to celebrate thanksgiving there. sometimes i still expect to see the labels of stuff in french. mmm... pamplemousse. happy thanksgiving to those celebrating it today!

Saturday, October 07, 2006

reunited and it feels so good

tonight i went to my friend natalie's wedding. i've known her forever - through the early stages of teen awkwardness, church youth group insanity, college hijinks until now in our mature adulthood (hah - whatever). the wedding was in her parents' backyard and i enjoyed the flashbacks in my mind as i drove over just like i did in high school. I remember going over there to watch movies, jump on the trampoline, or go on some late night mission to t.p. her house (or someone else's). and today i watched as she married this amazing man, and it was beautiful. i met ryan earlier this summer, and about 30 seconds after talking to him, it was exceedingly obvious to me that of course they should get married. it could've been that the three of us immediately talked about the simpsons. i'm very excited for this adventure that the two of them have embarked on.

i'm going to venture a guess that heaven will be a little bit like a really awesome wedding reception. reuniting with long lost friends, resurrecting old jokes, recalling fun memories, and laughing till there were tears in my eyes - i find few things more satisfying than this. i haven't laughed that hard in a while. plus there's free booze and small children dancing crazily. but seriously, picking up the threads of old relationships again was very good for my soul.

Friday, October 06, 2006

the hits just keep on comin'

this is how we roll in oaktown, baby. yahoo! i love baseball in october.

talk of the weather will do

my prespective gets all skewed. today was slightly overcast, clouds blowing through all day, the sun peeking through here and there. to my california eyes, this was a blah day. then i remembered that a day like this in vancouver = fabulous.

i wonder what else i see differently. this worries me.

Thursday, October 05, 2006

Gilead, page 5

"It is an amazing thing to watch people laugh, the way it sort of takes them over. Sometimes they really do struggle with it... So I wonder what it is and where it comes from, and I wonder what it expends out of your system, so that you have to do it till you're done, like crying in a way, I suppose, except that laughter is much more easily spent."

Wednesday, October 04, 2006

your thoughts

when approaching the scripture, is it presumptuous to look for a "take-away" lesson? why or why not? what, if any, expectations should we have when we study the bible? (i went to another small group tonight as you can guess. there was beer this time, so that was kind of cool) i'm serious. comments, please.

was this something we talked about in seminary while i wasn't paying attention? shoot. i was probably checking my email.

green october

it's 10:30 am and i'm watchin' playoff baseball with my bro and grandma. milton bradley spilled coffee all over esteban loaiza in the dugout and everyone freaked out except loaiza. who names their kid milton bradley? no wonder the dude is such an angry player; he's been harassed about board games his entire life. let's go a's!

p.s. i'm wearing my "mcfavorite" baseball shirt that melanie and dan gave me for my going away from vancouver gift. except what with all these grey's anatomy "mcdreamy" and "mcsteamy" characters, i look kind of weird for wearing it. oh well.

Monday, October 02, 2006


(cue "we are the champions" by queen)

in this historic baseball season in the year 2006, my team, the springfield isotopes, emerged victorious in my fantasy baseball league. thus, i have earned major trash talking privileges over my brother, cousins, friends and random people from the internet that i have never met. awesome.

rock over london, rock on chicago

this past weekend was more exciting than most weekends have been lately.

i met up with eric and his high school pals in the city on saturday night for some karaoke. i refrained from performing, but they busted out spirited renditions of "bad leroy brown", "i did it my way" and "hey jealousy." only because of karaoke would these songs be mentioned in the same sentence. oh, and the beautiful duet "you don't bring me flowers." everyone else was dressed to be out on the town, because that's how you roll in san francisco even if you're at a dive karaoke bar. but the boys were dressed in what they wore to the giants game earlier in the day and i was pretty much on the same level. it made the whole experience that much more amusing. i seem to only like dive bars - they have more character and the people watching is much more entertaining.

afterward we headed back to the east bay for late night grub, cheeseburgers or pies. mmm... pie. and rolled into bed at 2:30 in the morning. which actually isn't too much past my regular bedtime, only i've usually been up that late because i'm reading a good book, not out carousing around town.

sunday night i saw these guys. sherwood - the hardest working men in the music business (no joke - it's hard work being a rockstar). have a listen to their music if you're hankering for a bit of summer in your day, their music will hit the spot. my buddy nate is the lead singer and bassist - we worked at camp together crazy summer five years ago (the concert was a perfect excuse for a mini-reunion). his heart is as big as his laugh and loves making music without having to attach the adjective "christian" to it. he and the guys live in the winnebago from road rules 10 - they got a good deal on it. it makes me proud to see friends doing something that they love. sherwood: they're so hot right now. check 'em out.

Sunday, October 01, 2006

my favorite canadian-californian.

happy birthday wishes to jane halton, one of vancouver's finest. and i do mean FINE.

jane hits the big 3-0 today. welcome to the thirties, my friend. jane is a champion chickenfoot player (her inaugural victory celebration is at the left), a discerning burrito lover, and diet coke addict. for the sake of our friendship, i am willing to overlook the fact that she likes the LA dodgers.

Saturday, September 30, 2006

full house

there are 10 people staying at my house right now. it's a bit crazy.
there's my immediate fam, my grandma, uncle and cousin (the two of them are here to get my cousin set up at school), and three of my brother's high school buddies. they're having a grand reunion. that means they play old video games all night (eric pulled to old super nintendo out of the closet), reminisce about high school and work as many popculture references/quotes into conversation as possible. and i thought i was pretty good - they can have a complete conversation based on simpsons quotes alone. it's hard for me to keep up. it's fun to have them around.

i've been reading a lot lately. just started christ plays in ten thousand places by eugene peterson. i'm realizing that i'll always be learning, that i always want to be learning regardless of wether i'm in school or not. i'm afraid of forgetting what i've learned at regent. i'm afraid i'll be smushed back into the mold that our larger consumer culture forces us into. the siren cry of money and materialism is strong. i think that is why i need community of people that share christ-like values, to stand together.

Thursday, September 28, 2006

i rather feel like expressing myself...

a sign from the heavens

to avoid paying for parking at a's games, my brother and i usually park in the BART parking lot and walk over to the stadium. and we always drove by this house to get to the lot - it's been there for as long as i can remember. i noticed that it was going to be torn down, so i snapped a photo of it before the demolition. philsophize away about this handy evangelism tool/method.

it's just this regular house, i wonder how the owner decided to attach this message to the wall. i particularly like the flames adorning the word "hell." and perhaps the dish network system should also be associated with the dangers of hell.

hello, my name is...

tonight was the first small group bible study i've been to in a long time. all part of my new quest to get me some community - i wore a nametag and everything; i hate wearing nametags. didn't have any awkward small talk, lord be praised. i was curious to see how things would be, you know, post-theological education and all.

i've got some problems with how we do bible study - "we" being a general pronoun for the average church. let's go through a book of the bible, one chapter per week and make our best (largely uneducated) guesses at what the scripture is getting at. and with our western perspective, that means diving in from our contemporary viewpoint, jumping around to different verses, and immediately measuring ourselves against the passage. "do i live up to this passage?" (the answer: of course we don't, otherwise we wouldn't need grace), and so on. we were spending time in the word, but not really soaking it in so much. it had kind of a bull-in-a-china-shop feel to me in approaching scripture.

it made me appreciate the practice of lectio divina - of reading the word out loud, spending time in silence, soaking in the passage in a contemplative manner and letting it speak to us. and THEN sharing with each other.

i squirmed internally. i tried not to dominate the conversation. i know i know more than them, but that does not give me license to do my own bull in a china shop act. doesn't seem right to me. i'll go back, i guess. i want to meet people, after all, and be more involved at this church. this will not be my main source of intellectual stimulation, however. kind of a weird situation to find myself in.

Wednesday, September 27, 2006

sweet victory. finally.

ladies and gentlemen, your Oakland Athletics, 2006 AL West champs. it's about damn time. post-season, here we come!

me fail english? that's unpossible!


got another in-class exercise back in copyediting class. i haven't seen that much red ink since ... oh i don't know, high school ... no, grade school - ooh, i got it, one of my calculus tests in college (i got a d- in that class). apparently, i have no grasp of the english language. and i thought i had done well on it until i saw the corrections. my teacher isn't really big on encouragement. she sounds like marge simpson's mom. at least how i think she would sound.

seriously, i thought i was a grammar geek before. folks, i am being led into new worlds of grammar geekdom that i have never conceived of before - when to italicize, capitalize, use an apostrophe, insert a comma... blablabla. and i'm not really sure i want to go down this path.

i just find this really galling, you know, because i'm a writer. i love words. words are important to me. i know words.

i cursed during most of the drive home. 30 minutes.
i don't know. maybe it's a sign. writers have more fun.

i met with my spiritual director friend today. she lent me a copy of "what color is your parachute?" it's one of those really big job search books. check it - it's personally autographed to her from the author. apparently he lives in my hometown, and is christian and spoken at new college berkeley several times on vocation (she's the director of the school - think regent on a very small scale). and the book is all based within a biblical perspective of vocation. this is all news to me. i had it confused with "who moved my cheese?" i've actually read that one and though it was kind of dumb.

anyway, besides getting that book from her, she also lent me gilead by marilynne robinson which i've heard is very good. but i digress: our conversation was quite good. it's good to talk. and to be listened to. and to discover which ways God is calling me. feeling that tendency to let the job define me, instead of maybe the other way around. or something like that. sometimes the rest of life gets too loud for me to be able to think, and so it's good that i'm meeting with her.

sigh. i guess we'll see, huh?

Tuesday, September 26, 2006

future tense

okay vancouver homies...

i just got a wedding invitation from a good buddy of mine. the wedding is in seattle. in december.
since seattle is so much closer to vancouver than danville is, i thought i'd drop by. how's everyone's first week of december looking? i know most of you fools aren't in school anymore, so having finals is no excuse for at least one night at the wolf and hound for cheap pitchers of beer. or an occasion of this variety. (rice-firsts, please delay your departure from vancouver for a few days)

just thought i'd float that out there. this is a shameless attempt to get people to comment. here's what worked last time: grey's anatomy. there.

and - the a's LOST. AGAIN. (many swear words here)

Monday, September 25, 2006

indian summer

it's 90 degrees out.
what the heck?
i forgot that summer extends into october here.

also the stupid a's lost their stupid game yesterday to the stupid angels. so their stupid magic number is still 2. terrible playing yesterday - they looked like they were asleep out there. this does not bode well for the playoffs. at least i had one more chocolate malt with a wooden spoon before the season ends.

fake plastic trees

community. man, i haven't heard that word bandied about in a while. we used to say it so much at Regent that it really didn't hold much meaning for me after a while. sometimes the community there was cloying, much like spending too much time with your own family in a small space like on a road trip.

of course, in a school setting, community is served up on a platter. misery loves company to some degree - makes me think of the many times i've stayed up far too late at the last minute working on papers - at least i knew the weed was suffering along with me, or annie when we'd share a table and frantic looks on our faces typing our thesis projects. then we'd all go to the pub, or to mac's late at night for junk food.

and now? well now, i actually have to go out looking for community. the horror! not something easy for me the introvert. yesterday ashley had to serve in the prayer room after church and i loitered around for her before dinner. i haven't felt that self conscious about not knowing anyone in a long long time. i even had a brief awkward courtesy conversation with some well-meaning soul, and i wanted to run away. chalk it up to my social anxiety disorder (is that a real thing? i made it up one day and liked how it sounded). but then i talked to some people that had actually spent some time at regent, and their faces lit up with recognition. and that somehow was like a lifeline - i'm slowly realizing how out of community i am and how much i miss it. actually the whole service was quite encouraging in ways that i hadn't encountered in a while, not since i had left vancouver. for one, i actually agreed with their theology, which, you know, is nice.

mostly i was reassured to find having values and things in common with people that i thought i wouldn't be able to find quite so easily. which i haven't been able to find, and was afraid i wouldn't find; i thought maybe regent had made me more of an stranger in a strange land than i already was, being a christian and all.

the church is hosting this conference "jesus and evangelical power" and the speakers are from uganda, el salvador, cairo and calcutta. i'm quite impressed. voices from the majority world telling american evangelical where we're getting it wrong and getting it right. i'm looking forward to going.

this whole post-regent life is slow in coming together. i thought i had a strategy, only to have it turned upside down by my life coaching friend. which was kind of annoying, but good. i guess i pay her to do that. there is more than one way to look at something, which is a simple fact that i seem to forget a lot.

Saturday, September 23, 2006

america's past-time

The Oakland A's magic number to clinch the AL west division: 2
*meaning that, at the game tomorrow vs. the angels, the title could be ours!
will i be at the game? yes
was i at today's game, hoping it today would be the day? yes
the nachos were subpar this time around. very disappointing.

also, i am 5.5 points up on the rest of the teams in my fantasy baseball league. what???? that's insane.

Wednesday, September 20, 2006

my thursday nights are booked

my new addiction. it's not very often that a show can make me laugh and cry from one moment to the next. yes, i have choked up watching this show; i am a sap. i have a crush on all of the characters.

but like jeff wrote, if you call me tomorrow, don't expect an answer.

kickin' it old school

so i'm rattling around in my old jeep cherokee these days. i try to drive as little as possible, but sometimes i just have to escape my house, so i feel like i am accomplishing something. and what do i listen to while i drive? well, the car just has a tape deck (remember cassette tapes?) and the most current tape in there is a mix tape comprised of "Spiceworld" the Spice Girls' second album. remember the spice girls? man, they had some catchy tunes.

but the most frightening thing is not that i am actually listening to it, but that I STILL REMEMBER THE WORDS to a lot of the songs. topping that, my middle brother can tell which spice girl is singing in each song. we liked them, but in a kind of ironic way, in that is was so easy to hate them.

my youngest brother is the one responsible for this mix tape (he must have been 12 at the time), which also contains such hits as "karma police" by radiohead,"we are the champions" by queen, "hey mickey" by toni basil, and a large part of adam sandler stand-up (lunch lady blues, etc.). it is the worst mix tape i have ever heard.

you are now supremely jealous to learn that I HAVE SEEN THE SPICE GIRLS IN CONCERT. oh yes. 1998. if you don't think that is amazingly funny, then i don't want to be friends with you. get off my blog.

Tuesday, September 19, 2006

people i like

a few friends celebrated birthdays recently. wish i could've been around to join the festivities for such cool people. why can't we all live on the same street in the same town anymore?

sara is now 29 years of age. sara enjoys donuts (boston cremes rule!) and mysterious german tonics but hates exercising in direct sunlight. she'll kick your ass in a game of "name that 80's sitcom theme song."

at 6'4", dave is exactly 12 inches taller than me. he likes banana-flavored liquer, singing in bars with blind piano players and drinkin' beer before systematic c class. he's got 29 years under his belt.

stevie likes using overly large appliances, "billy jean" by michael jackson and wearing flesh-toned shorts. he makes wicked good soup. i believe steve is 28.

i did not make up any of these facts. glad to know people like these, makes life far more interesting. happy belated birthday! this special post is in lieu of birthday presents, by the way. you can thank me later.