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Wednesday, May 31, 2006

Random Thoughts on a Wednesday Afternoon

Thought #1: Randy Elrod is "retiring" and moving on to a new phase of life and ministry. I am happy (and just a little bit jealous).

Thought #2
: Why would you put those toilet paper holders that only give you 2 squares at a time in a hotel bathroom? And for pitty sake, don't stick them BEHIND the toilet! I don't want to spend 3 minutes just working on getting some paperwork done only to end up with a krick in my neck!

Thought #3: Bruce. D. Johnson is the man.

Thought #4: I wish Justin would post something.

Thought #5: I love the summer - yes, even in Fresno where it is just a tad cooler than the surface of the sun.

Thought #6
: Being a big brother and freaking out your younger siblings on the MarineWorld version of Disneyland's Teacups is REALLY fun!

Tuesday, May 30, 2006

What will they think of next?

This just in from the Washington DC desk: US Patent Application #7037243 - The Cordless Jump Rope, created by inventor Lester J. Clancy.
If you think keeping fit is merely mind over matter, Lester Clancy has an invention for you - a cordless jump-rope. That's right, a jump-rope minus the rope. All that's left is two handles, so you jump over the pretend rope. Or if you are truly lazy, you can pretend to jump over the pretend rope.

And for that idea kicking around Clancy's head since 1988, the U.S. Patent Office this month awarded the 52-year-old Mansfield, Ohio, man a patent. Its number: 7037243.

What makes this invention work is the moving weights inside the handles. They simulate the feel of a rope moving, Clancy said. Well, it's only one handle so far because Clancy is waiting for financial backers before building its partner.

But why jump rope without a rope?

It's perfect for the clumsy, Clancy said. "If you are still jumping, you're still using your legs as well as your arms, and getting the cardiovascular workout. You just don't have to worry about tripping on the rope."

It is also good for mental institutions and prisons where rope is a suicide risk, said Clancy, who works as a laundry coordinator in a state prison. And low ceiling fans aren't a hazard any more, he said.

All of the jumping, none of the tripping! Double-dutch your legs off like a Harlem schoolgirl without the neighbors seeing! Honey, let's sell the house and finance the other handle for this guy. We're gonna be rich, I tell ya! RICH!!!
Strawberry shortcake
Huckleberry pie
It's a patent on nothing, my, oh my!

Read the full story HERE and view the actual patent application HERE.

HT: Dave Barry's Blog

Sunday, May 28, 2006

18 Years

Today I'm celebrating 18 years with my sweet wife. What a time it has been! Thanks, babe, for sticking with me!

I love you!

Saturday, May 27, 2006


Have you heard about this?

The Pentagon announced TODAY the formation of a new 500-man elite fighting unit called the United States Redneck Special Forces (USRSF).

These Alabama, Arkansas, Georgia, Kentucky, Louisiana, Mississippi, Missouri, Oklahoma, Tennessee, Texas and West Virginia boys will be dropped off into Iraq and have been given only the following facts about terrorists :
  1. The season opened today.
  2. There is no limit.
  3. They taste just like chicken.
  4. They don't like beer, pickup trucks, country music or Jesus.
  5. They are directly responsible for the deaths of Elvis & Dale Earnhardt.
The Pentagon expects the problem in Iraq to be over by next Friday.

Thanks, Gary, for a great laugh!

HT: Mad Babble from a Church Planter

Friday, May 26, 2006

Friday Funny Video - The Hills Go to Church

What happens when Hank Hill goes looking for a new church? I'm glad you asked...

Thursday, May 25, 2006

Costco sells art

When it comes to Costco, I always say, "If they don't have it, you don't need it." It turns out if you buy art, Costco might have something for you, too...

Check this story out from the Seattle Post-Intelligencer:

Costco shoppers who were hoping to pick up some fine art along with their groceries won't be able to buy a Picasso from the nation's largest wholesale-club operator this week. The drawing offered for $145,999.99 has been pulled from the company's Web site.

Jim Sinegal, Costco's chief executive, said "Picador in a Bullfight" was taken off the site after one of Picasso's children, Maya Widmaier-Picasso, questioned the authenticity certificates of that drawing and two others already sold by the company.

"We're still trying to ferret out where we're at on this thing," Sinegal said Thursday.

He said the company thoroughly researched the authenticity of this drawing and the other two before offering them to the public.

"That doesn't mean we're infallible," he said, adding, "We would be terribly embarrassed if there was a flaw in our system."

The company called the customers who bought the other drawings from Costco.com as soon as they heard The New York Times was doing a story questioning the authenticity of similar drawings.

The New York Times story was published in Thursday's Seattle P-I.

Sinegal said both customers declared themselves satisfied with their purchases, but if it turns out the drawings are not authentic, they will be offered their money back.

Art dealer Jim Tutwiler has been selling art through Issaquah-based Costco for the past decade. He described a crayon-on-paper Picasso drawing sold in January 2005 as a "doodle" on the blank side of a book jacket. The work was signed and dated Nov. 29, 1970.

That drawing and a Picasso sold in November 2004 on Costco.com both came with a handwritten and signed declaration from Widmaier-Picasso.

But Widmaier-Picasso told The New York Times that she questions the authenticity of "Picador in a Bullfight" and its authentication certificate, which also purports to have been drawn up and signed by her.

She contends the document is a forgery, citing concerns ranging from grammar to handwriting.

Sinegal said Costco officials checked the authentication certificates that accompanied their drawings and found only one of her five concerns to be an issue on the company's certificates, which were further verified by the International Society of Appraisers.

Check out the story from the Seattle P-I HERE or the original story from the NY Times HERE.

Monday, May 22, 2006

It's Here!

Today I am 40. I think my theme song for today is going to be, "I ain't as good as I once was (but I'm as good once as I ever was)."

It's a little weirder now that I'm here and when asked my age, it's not, "I'll be 40 soon," but, "I'm 40."

In some ways it's no different than yesterday. In other ways it's really different. When I was in my late teens and early 20's (ages that don't seem all that long ago), 40 seem really old. Now that I'm here, I don't really feel all that different than I did back than. But there is this realization that guys in their late teens and early 20's look at me as really old.

I don't know how I feel about that.

I do know that I am thankful and grateful on this day. I am thankful to God for saving me and for allowing me to do what I love at a place I love.

I am thankful for a wife that has put up with far more than I have to put up with. She is more good and godly than I am by a long shot. She is a wonderful, kind, creative, strong, honest, loyal person. She is so good in so many ways. She is a great wife to me and a wonderful mother to our boys.

I am thankful for my two strong young boys (one of which is becoming a fine young man). They make me so proud and humble me so much. Their smile tells me that there is a good God and that He has blessed me beyond measure or comprehension. I hate being away from them - but love coming home and having them fight over who is going to get to me first to hug me.

I am thankful for my friends and mentors throughout the years - people like Ron & Elaine, Larry & Cindy, Sue & Terry, Bishop, Frank, Ron, Mike, Randy & Chris, Parker, and guys like Chuck Butler, Gary Engels, and Frank Eaton.

I am learning patience and humility and servanthood (God grant me the grace to learn them faster!). I am learning to be more kind and loving - to treat others as better than myself. I hope that have come a long way from my 20's, but I know I have a long way to go...

40 down and ??? to go...

Sunday, May 21, 2006

Countdown: 1 . . .

Tomorrow is the day. I finally get to grow up.

40 seems old. Until I realize that I am 40 now. Maybe it's not so old after all (unless your in your 20's - and then 40 REALLY seems like a long way off).

Oh well, before I wax too poetic, here's the final pictures in my countdown collection: the 30's. That's me with my two sisters when I was around 30 or so. The next picture is in front of our new house we bought in Maple Valley, WA when I worked for Microsoft (that's Connor on my shoulders - he's about 9 months old there). The last picture is from a couple of years back with my good friends from Willow Glen Baptist Church in San Jose.

Saturday, May 20, 2006

Countdown: 2 . . .

Moving out of my high school years, today I have pictures from my 20's. Specifically, my college days (playing frisbee golf iwth a buddy, a picture of Mrs. Two Blonde Boys and me when we were dating, graduation day at college, and our wedding a couple of weeks later).

On other fronts, check out these posts on The daVinci Code movie at Ethos, newworship blog, and Shlog.

Also, here's a great quote on disorganization from AA Milne (he wrote Winnie the Pooh). I found it over at biggiefries:

One of the advantages of being disorderly is that one is constantly making exciting discoveries.

Have a great day!

Friday, May 19, 2006

Countdown: 3 . . .

In keeping with my countdown, here are a couple more pix. The first is my freshman picture, the other is my senior picture (CIHS Raider Pride, baby!). Yes, I went to school in the day of the powder blue tux!

Make sure you read all the way to the bottom to check out the Friday Funny Video about the evolution of dance. It is a classic!

Thursday, May 18, 2006

Countdown: 4 . . .

That's me in the third grade. What's the deal with my hair? Did no one tell my mom it was picture day. Or... worse yet, did she KNOW it was picture day and CHOOSE to send me to school wearing that. It's like looking at the cast of That 70's Show (oh, wait... it was the 70's).

Here's a great quote from Albert Einstein (proving that I, too, must be a genius):

"If I were not a physicist, I would probably be a musician. I often think in music. I live my daydreams in music. I see my life in terms of music."

HT: The Rockalot Blog

Wednesday, May 17, 2006

Countdown: 5 . . .

It's only 5 days away. I used to think I would feel older when I got here. I don't (most of the time - except in the morning when there is a lot more creaking and popping than there used to be).

I definitely feel young - even though the young dogs remind me that in their mind I really am old.

In my mind I am still somewhere between 18 and 21. My wife would argue that it is somewhere between 12 and 14.

Oh well... time waits for no man.

So as you count down to the big day with me, here are some thoughts to live by, supposedly from the Dalai Lama (Not really. Snopes.com points out that it's just an urban legend. Nonetheless, it's good stuff).

I have actually learned some of these things in the past 39 years. Others I am still working on.

  1. Take into account that great love and great achievements involve great risk.
  2. When you lose, don't lose the lesson.
  3. Follow the three R'’s: Respect for self, Respect for others and Responsibility for all your actions.
  4. Remember that not getting what you want is sometimes a wonderful stroke of luck.
  5. Learn the rules so you know how to break them properly.
  6. Don't let a little dispute injure a great relationship.
  7. When you realize you've made a mistake, take immediate steps to correct it.
  8. Spend some time alone every day.
  9. Open your arms to change, but don'’t let go of your values.
  10. Remember that silence is sometimes the best answer.
  11. Live a good, honorable life. Then when you get older and think back, you'll be able to enjoy it a second time.
  12. A loving atmosphere in your home is the foundation for your life.
  13. In disagreements with loved ones, deal only with the current situation. Don't bring up the past.
  14. Share your knowledge. It is a way to achieve immortality.
  15. Be gentle with the earth.
  16. Once a year, go someplace you've never been before.
  17. Remember that the best relationship is one in which your love for each other exceeds your need for each other.
  18. Judge your success by what you had to give up in order to get it.
  19. Approach love and cooking with reckless abandon.
By the way... that's me at my 3rd birthday party.

HT: Seth's Blog

Tuesday, May 16, 2006

Mildly Disturbing Fortune Cookie Fortunes

You definately wouldn't want to find these in your fortune cookie...

"Your car is unreliable and poorly maintained."

"Your friends secretly agree that your head is too small for your body."

"The man you've just hired to paint your house is an alcoholic. His work will be mediocre at best."

"Your roommate is stealing from you."

"The pants you've recently purchased are unfashionably short."

"You frequently mispronounce 'Antarctic,' and 'volumptuous' is not a real word."

HT: McSweeney's

Monday, May 15, 2006

And the winner is...

Sara Edwards of With Reckless Abandon correctly identified the following dialogue...

"'Don't you mean Jack Daniels?'

'He may be Jack to you son, but when you've known him as long as I have... that's a joke.'"

...as being from the movie Scent of a Woman.

Congratulations, Sara! Check out her blog HERE.

And you think your church has problems...

So here's the latest story from WBKO in Kentucky. I thought it was a joke until I watched the video.

Two services... Two pastors... One church.

"We're worshiping on this side and they worship inside," said former pastor Tim White.

Because this pastor along with many members of the congregation are not allowed in church.

"It's just not right... It's just not right," said Janice Ferguson, Calvary Christian church member.

"I've never been kicked out of a church.... and I've never had no trouble with any church I pastored," said White.

White has been the pastor of the church for 6 years. Now this restraining order is keeping him from crossing this road.

"The corporation board had fired their minister for not teaching church doctrine and he's refused to leave," said the lawyer for the church, Stephen Poindexter.

"I haven't preached nothin but the word," said White.

But he was voted out... by the elders of the church.

White says the constitution and bi laws of the church require a 3/4ths vote of the membership, not just the elders.

"That's the reason I'm still pastor of the congregation," said White.

"He refused to leave. He just keeps coming back every Sunday and wed. And attempting to run the service and interfering," said Poindexter.

So, White's service is here across the street, and the congregation is split.

"They wanted me in on this and I would not get in on this because I didn't think it was legal," said church elder Frank Denton.

"There was a few that decided they wanted to take over and rule above the govern of the church," said White.

Tension is rising as each side waits for a court to make the final determination.

"It's like everything has been taken away from you," said Ferguson.

"The bible says you gotta love them if you're going to heaven but sometimes my love is wearing real thin for these people," said Denton.

Three Kentucky State Police troopers were on the scene to keep the peace between the sides. This issue will be in Monroe County Circuit Court Wednesday morning at nine.


HT: Monday Morning Insight

Sunday, May 14, 2006

What's in store for me

I have two boys. I guess you probably figured that one out by now. Anyway...

My boys are both all boy. They love to mix it up. They also love to drive each other crazy. This is a peek into my future.

Happy Mother's Day.

Saturday, May 13, 2006

Where's the video?

I have been spending my week making videos for this Sunday... four... no, make that FIVE to be exact. And on Wednesday we lost power - twice - and is trahsed the first and longest video I was making (about a day-and-a-half worth of work).

So it's Saturday night and I am getting readu to make the last one. The silver lining in all this is that it is going to make for a great Mother's Day at church.

So that's pretty much been my wseek - that and getting the house ready for the big 40th birthday bash here next Friday.

I'll post the videos here when I finish (at least one of them)... until tehn, what movie does this line come from:

"'Don't you mean Jack Daniels?'

'He may be Jack to you son, but when you've known him as long as I have... that's a joke.'"

E-mail your answers HERE.

Thursday, May 11, 2006

Funny Stuff

I am a regular reader of ysmarko, the blog of Youth Specialties president, Mark Oestreicher. Because Mark is a youth guy - thoughtful and incredible funny - his blog runs the gamut from "things that make you go, 'Hmmm,'" to "things that make you go, 'BAHAHAHAHAHAHAAAAA!!!'"

This is the latter.

I think I went to high school with her...

Jimmy Carter in drag bears an uncanny resemblance to my grandmother...

She was my first grade Sunday School teacher...

Just plain disturbing...

Bill Clinton is actually a very attractive woman.


My 6th grade teacher, Mrs. Level.

HT: worth1000 via ysmarko

Wednesday, May 10, 2006

My Friend Tamoa

The other day, I just about wet my pants laughing. I sent an e-mail to a group that I am a part of looking for advice on who might have a lead for a great Christian runner that we could have come speak in conjunction with a city-wide 3 mile race our church is going to sponsor this fall.

I got some good leads. But I also got this response:

Dude. I am the most famous runner in Samoa. We are a little heftier over here but would love to come speak. I run a 19 minute mile.


The response was from my bro, Carlos Whittaker, from Ragamuffin Soul. That boy is funny. Read his blog today. Do it. Go on.

Love you, Los. You are one funny man!

Tuesday, May 09, 2006

A Little KISS for You...

When I was a kid, I think one of the first rock-n-roll albums I ever owned was KISS, Double Platinum. KISS has long since taken off the make-up (and put it back on again). But here's something you might not have known...

The Kiss cover band MiniKiss, made up entirely of little people (my wife LOVES the show Little People, Big World), is in a legal tussle with another Kiss cover band made up entirely of little people (and one 350 lb. woman), Tiny Kiss.

You can't make stuff like this up!

Monday, May 08, 2006

Tips for Hitchikers

I have never hitchhiked. Not for real, that is. WHen we were young and the world was a kinder, gentler place, my buddies and I would walk along the road pretending to hitch a ride, and running away like mad if someone actually pulled over (we were like 8 or 9 for Pete's sake!).

But there are those of you - you know who you are - that find an occassion to hitch a ride now and again. and so for you, I offer these tips...

Dress like the people you want to pick you up.

Carry babywipes to stay clean.

Always stand up, look the driver in the eye, and if you can tell he isn't going to stop, pull in your thumb, wave, and smile at him. No one owes you a ride.

If you hitch at night, you will get rides from independent truckers. If you walk to the top of a grade, so they will be in low gear when they reach you, you have a much better chance they'll stop.

Don't be a mooch. Have enough money (and class) to buy your ride lunch. Offer to chop wood, pump his gas, whatever.

Hitch the person, not the ride.

Whatever happens, think positive.

Never ride with a drunk, no matter how desperate you are.

HT: Tricks of the Trade

Friday, May 05, 2006

Friday Funny Video

It's been a long couple of weeks and my posting has been a lot more sporadic than I would have liked.

So for my faithful readers, here's a Friday funny video.

For a list of past videos, click HERE.

Tuesday, May 02, 2006

This Means War

This is "hypercompetition, make no mistake" piped Microsoft's Bill Gates, when asked last week about the threat posed to his company by Google, Inc. What follows will be a technology arms race that could determine the future of information technology as we know it, according to The New York Times. For the outside observer, this could be enormously fun to watch, but for those with a vested interest in either side, the atmosphere is becoming more and more combative. The evidence of a pending Cold War comes from Microsoft's first quarter earnings, when HQ announced it would ramp up next year's spending by $2 billion more than previous estimates. Much of that will go towards competing with Google and Yahoo, the Internet ad giants, Ray Ozzie, Microsoft's chief technology officer told the Times. Should Microsoft fail, "Our business as we know it is at risk," he said. Simply put, people don't want to pay for software, and they also don't want to be roped into a Microsoft-only universe of applications. They want choice, and they don't want to pay. Google is starting to offer everything Microsoft does, but for free. Thus, Microsoft's business will be undergoing a sea change. It's going to cost a lot, but competition like this is also going to be great for consumers.

Read the full NY Times story HERE.