Thursday, June 29, 2006

Thank You for the Music

I think this is one of the few parts of the country that you can hear Comfortably Numb and Sweet Home Alabama back to back on the radio - I heard them both on the local Huntsville classic rock station during my commute home today.

Experienced a weird music concidence earlier in the week. I was listening to the Florence rock station, and on the radio came this great song that I'd never heard before. I was just driving down Alternate 72 toward Florence, lost in the intensity of this new song - it started with, Uno, Dos, Tres, Catorce...

Well, you may already know the answer to this, but I had no idea if it was old or new, or who sang it; but I thought it was great, so I intended to come home and look it up in a lyrics website. Of course, it slipped my mind, but a few nights later, Krista was flipping channels and landed on Who Wants to Be a Millionaire. One of the questions was, "What group sings a song that starts with Uno, Dos, Tres, Catorce...?" Krista popped in with the answer - Vertigo, by U2. I told her about hearing it recently, and how great I thought it was and she told me we had it on iTunes - she had downloaded it a while back (Krista being a big U2 fan and all). Well, I apparently don't know my U2 that well, but now I have my question answered through an interesting string of coincidences. I guess I better burn some of Krista's music and see what I've been missing...

Saturday, June 24, 2006

The Lake House

No, not that Lake House.

We have some good friends whose parents have a small house on the lake, so we took the kids for a quick boat ride last night. Got some nice sunset shots...

I'd really like to figure out why I can't click on pictures and get their actual sizes so that I can post them wallpaper-sized.

[figured it out - click to enlarge to wallpaper size]

Don't they look happy about getting on the boat?

License Plate of the Day

When you call on me, when you come and pray to me, I'll listen.
-Jeremiah 29:12

Seen in Huntsville on the commute to work 06 23.

Friday, June 23, 2006

Fine Alabama Cuisine

Mmm...goat mouth waters just thinking about it.

And I can't pass this place without my disturbed mind thinking that there are a bunch of cranky old men in the back room being stuffed into a meat grinder.

Or maybe that would have to be GeezerBurger.

On the way to work this morning.

Wednesday, June 21, 2006

Stuck in Traffic

I've never been in a traffic jam on Alt 72. Especially outside of Trinity, AL. But anyone going either way on this road this evening was stuck for a while. I'm not quite sure what happened - the truck looked pretty bad - bad enough add 45 minutes to my hour-and-a-half commute.

The truck was on the eastbound side of the road going toward Decatur, but it stopped traffic westbound, too. It's always frustrating being in a traffic jam, but I think I was probably having a grand day compared to anyone involved in this wreck.

Shot from my side mirror of the traffic behind me that I had sat in for the last 45 minutes.

Tuesday, June 13, 2006

Stop, Drop, and Roll!!

On the way home today, on the edge of Florence, on Hwy 72, I saw a sign in front of a church that said:


I think that the most effective way we can share with people the love and compassion of Jesus is by holding the threat of eternal damnation over their head.


(Maybe that sounded a bit more cynical than I intended. Maybe.)

UPDATE: Actual picture.

Sunday, June 11, 2006

Spiritual Implications of Over the Hedge

Some interesting commentary on our lives in this film.

The first thing is the obvious worship-relationship we have with food. "This is the altar where they worship the food", notes RJ (the raccon) as they spy a family praying over their dinner. Unfortunately, that often doesn't seem to be far from the truth. It's a much longer sequence (most of which is shown in the trailer), and I won't continue to beat that horse here, as it's just the tip of the iceberg.

A little later, as they're passing an SUV, and commenting on it's size, Hammy (the squirrel) asks how many people fit in one. The raccon replies, "Normally, about one."

But the clincher is a song that's played during the credits. Based on a Ben Folds Five song called Rockin' the Suburbs, this one is titled Rockin' the Suburbs (Over the Hedge version). I had never heard of the song, but if you have, you'll know why it had to change for a kid's movie. I'm not familiar with Ben Folds's music, but this version of the song is genius. It starts with:

Let me tell y'all what it's like
Watching idol on a friday night
In a house built safe and sound
On indian burial ground

We drive our cars everyday
To and from work both ways
So we make just enough to pay
To drive our cars to work each day

I won't belabor the point with the rest of the lyrics here, but plot of the movie is that a small group of hibernating animals wakes up to find their home changed from an expansive woodland to the token parcel of greenery in the middle of a suburban paradise (nightmare?). In a subtle-yet-not-so-subtle way, the film plays with the idea of how we've lost something with our plastic, fast-paced, instantly-gratified lives. It got me to thinking about how to change back to a slower, stop-and-smell-the-roses kind of life. A life that deals with the important things - justice, mercy, compassion, as Jesus and the prophets told us. Do we have to do that with drastic changes? Waking up one day and giving our lives a complete overhaul to remember and spend time with what's important? Or can we do it with small changes, here and there, over time? Or maybe, as much of life seems to be lately, with small changes over time that end up in a completely changed life?

Have I stopped making sense, yet?

Photo (back)Log

Just a few things I've taken pictures of that I intended to post but haven't.
The moon framed by a flowering tree in our back yard.

This one and the next one were taken the day we got to the beach on our recent vacation...

...fortunately the weather turned better

Saturday, June 10, 2006

To Boycott or Not to Boycott

I reflect upon the films that are in theaters right now, and I realize that this is the first time I've ever seriously considered boycotting a movie. I think about the world and the state it is in today, and the messages we are sending to our children. The messages this culture and Hollywood is trying to force on us. I've thought long and hard about this, and I'm really torn. Should I see it? Should I not? Should I at least understand what people are going to see so that I have a basis for discussing it? But, I guess the real question here is, do we really need another movie with Larry the Cable Guy??

But, I broke down today and took my daughter to see Cars. And another small part of my integrity seems to be torn away. Even worse, I enjoyed the film. Another win for degeneracy...

Things to Remember Today

...or Quotes of the Day

For the mountains shall depart;
And the hills be removed,

But My kindness shall not depart from thee.
-God, speaking through the prophet Isaiah

The Lord is my light and my salvation;
Whom shall I fear?
The Lord is the strength of my life;

Of whom shall I be afraid?

Sunday, June 04, 2006


I just came in from standing outside in the rain. (See what the weather looked like here a little while ago.)

Standing there, with the water coming down, hearing the thunder, I thanked God for reminding me that He is sovereign. He is in control. The stress and anxiety that are attacking me from all sides lately. The minor illnesses that fatigue me. All of it will pass. All of it is part of His will. It's difficult to remember that. When you are actually "walking through the valley of the shadow of death," it's difficult to not be afraid. He doesn't cause it; and actually, a lot of it we bring upon ourselves. But He is still there. Sometimes I forget. I know that whatever is going on now shall pass, and I will get through it. Knowing that doesn't always make the pain go away, or free me from worry, but it's comforting.

I came in and read something my beautiful wife read to me a little while ago (well, after I took a wonderful hot shower and made some peppermint tea):

I cried unto the Lord with my voice;
With my voice unto the Lord did I make my supplication.

I poured out my complaint before Him;
I shewed before Him my trouble.

When my spirit was overwhelmed within me,
Then Thou knewest my path.
In the way wherein I walk
Have they privily made a snare for me.

I looked on my right hand, and beheld,
But there was no man who would know me:
Refuge failed me;

No man cared for my soul.

I cried until Thee, O Lord:
I said, Thou art my refuge and my portion
In the land of the living.

Attend unto my cry,
For I am brought very low:
Deliver me from my persecutors;

For they are stronger than I.

Bring my soul out of prison,
That I may praise Thy name:
The righteous shall compass about me;
For Thou shalt deal bountifully with me.

Normally I don't prefer The King James Version for reading, but I love its language when I read the poetry in the Bible. This is Psalm 142, written by David, while he was hiding out in a cave from King Saul.

Saturday, June 03, 2006

Lesson of the Week #2

In my second attempt to blind myself, I learned the following:

Do not shine a laser pointer on your wedding ring. Due to the curvature of the ring, it is very easy to reflect the laser point directly into your own eyes.

Things were only blurry for about 15 minutes...but the headache lasted a few hours.