2/26/2006

thanks candace

More quiz fun. Am I a bad Christian because I don't really even know what this means? (That's rhetorical, because that's what the first category means, hehe...these sorts of artificial theological categories, while academically interesting, aren't very relevant)

You scored as Emergent/Postmodern. You are Emergent/Postmodern in your theology. You feel alienated from older forms of church, you don't think they connect to modern culture very well. No one knows the whole truth about God, and we have much to learn from each other, and so learning takes place in dialogue. Evangelism should take place in relationships rather than through crusades and altar-calls. People are interested in spirituality and want to ask questions, so the church should help them to do this.


Emergent/Postmodern

68%

Evangelical Holiness/Wesleyan

57%

Modern Liberal

54%

Neo orthodox

50%

Charismatic/Pentecostal

46%

Classical Liberal

43%

Reformed Evangelical

36%

Roman Catholic

32%

Fundamentalist

29%

What's your theological worldview?
created with QuizFarm.com

more 2004 election fun

(P) Check this out. It's no wonder the government has been dragging its feet on releasing data from the Florida voting machines. Surely it's just a couple errors, you know, nothing like, say, 100,000 anomolies. That would just be ridiculous. And un-American.

Well, almost.

2/25/2006

joyeux mardi gras tout le monde

You know it's a good weekend when it's so full there's no time for celebrating one of the greatest holidays there is! Alas, this year my high school kiddies, trying a little swing, judging some mock trial, and dinner and bowling with church peeps were all already on the agenda.

But the rest of you, have fun! I wonder if ours will be the biggest this year? There were already people downtown this morning when I was there for trial (we have regionals at the Civil Courts building). I am one of those people who say they love New Orleans yet have never been there except around Mardi Gras :)

I of course jinxed myself when I wrote after the Katrina debacle that I needed to start planning now for Mardi Gras because it was going to be big in St. Louis. Serves me right for actually trying to plan ahead.

And a sad tieland update: today isn't even a work day, and I wore a tie. The cause isn't going so hot.

2/19/2006

wcc statement

That's the World Council of Churches, by the way, not some new wrestling league.

The US delegation released on interesting statement at the beginning of the conference in Brazil. For those of you that get hung up on the grace and peace stuff, jump to the topic sentence of paragraph two. It's good to see some clear wording that isn't pulling any punches.

What, you're too lazy to even click the link and read one topic sentence, let alone a whole statement? Ok, here you go:

"Yet we acknowledge as well that we are citizens of a nation that has done much in these years to endanger the human family and to abuse the creation."

This will cause some interesting friction back in the US within some denominations that are still struggling to figure out whether the authoritarian, corporate-funded wing of the Republican Party is an ally or enemy in the core missions of the church.

2/16/2006

indie self-righteousness

(R) Musicians can be quite full of themselves, particularly when talking about how valuable musicians are. Now, that's all fine and good for noncommercial purposes. But it gets really annoying and ridiculous when claims about being nice to artists extend to commercial transactions.

This quote is what set me off from Victory Records' founder Tony Brummel:

"I absolutely believe that allowing people to cherry-pick the tracks they want from each album cannibalises full-length album sales and is ultimately detrimental to the artists who created the music"

I'm not that passionate about music, but for some reason I feel like debunking this absurdity from the record industry in-depth (after all, it's not just indies that say this). Maybe that's the point; this is absurd because he's trying to claim creative protection for an economic transaction. Any quote from businessmen claiming some special right for their particular industry is always suspect, but never mind the short-term commercial interests of Victory Records' boss. There's a lot more that's interesting about complaints against consumer choice.

That's basically what this is, after all; a rant against consumer choice. Brummel doesn't think consumers deserve to speak for themselves. Rather, he thinks his artists are entitled to be given money. Nevermind what the people who are giving up that money want. In fact, those paying customers should feel guilty for even trying to signal their desires by something so profane and unclean as spending their money on the music they actually want rather than the music the record company wants to sell them.

There's also no warrant behind the claim. Apple sells a huge number of songs as part of an album through the iTunes Music Store. That inconvenient fact tends to get ignored in these kinds of discussions. And even if that were true, there's no reasoning that changing the ratio of songs sold on the album would be detrimental to the artist. It neither changes the total dollar value returned to the artist nor affects the artist's ability to put whatever he wants (or more accurately, whatever the record label will let him put) on the album.

Then there's the attitude revealed by the tone of comments like this. Unapproved actions by consumers are described in such negative language as cherry-picking and cannibalisation. So much for the consumer being king. Instead, consumers are supposed to serve the music industry.

Another interesting aspect of this complaint is that it's nothing new. Music videos, radio stations, advertisements, and other commercialized outlets already single out particular songs to be repeated ad nauseum. In fact, if anything, services like iTunes democratize the ability of music fans to determine for themselves which are the best songs. Try getting a Clear Channel radio station to play a different song from the album du jour. Not to mention the fact that iTunes returns money to the music industry. If labels big and small want to be so snooty about it, maybe we just shouldn't buy any music at all. Let's record songs off the radio and swap CDs with friends. Not to mention all the less legal things for which the iTunes Music Store and other charging services offer compelling alternatives.

Plus, real artists do it for the music, not the money, right?

2/13/2006

century club times 2

These are two completely unrelated events that I of course had to ever so craftily tie together. For my 200th post, is there any interest in the business school's speaker next month, Hugh Grant? The CEO of Monsanto, not the actor. (The speaker series is called century club, by the way, for those of you not up on the bschool lingo).

Yes, I can go by myself. But come on; simultaneously taking a huge multinational corporation to task while trying to land a job at said evilness is more fun in groups!

2/12/2006

this is too cool

My grandmother, reserved widow of a Southern Baptist preacher, got arrested in Russia! Her lawyer got jailed, too.

Apparently it was nothing real, just some political fun, because all were released after about 9 hours. But can you say that your grandmother has been imprisoned by the Kremlin?

Yeah, I didn't think so.

yay for embarrassing times

Now I have two dances that lend themselves toward social embarrassment. My roommate took tango lessons in college, and apparently my swing revived this interest, so when Emily forwarded me the info about the tango thingy tonight, Jodi jumped at the chance. It actually was quite fun, and doing enough to be able to walk around the room was easier than the same for swing.

Nonetheless, in all practical effects tonight was yet another in the string of awkwardly embarrassing evenings that will no doubt litter the rest of this winter. And to add to it, my swing instructor was there tonight.

Woohoo!

2/11/2006

munich

We went to see Munich tonight, and it was good. Interestingly, not in the deep meaning kind of sense. Instead, it was basically Doom set in Europe.

Now, that's anything but a complaint, coming from me. Perhaps I'm giving Spielberg too much credit, but I think that was quite intentional. Sure, there are those cheesy lines of reflection and deep sounding dialogue on metaphysics and self-doubt, but that consumed about 4 minutes of the 4 hours we were there. Ok, technically it's only like 2:40 or something, but I haven't seen a movie that felt that long since 7 Years in Tibet.

I came out of Jarhead watching a movie about nothing feeling bored and apathetic; I wanted my money back. But this one worked. Set against the backdrop of serious historical events, it's a great exploration of violence begetting violence with no end game strategy and wasted dollars and lives littering the road.

I very much liked the ending shot. Not what was in the foreground (I won't give anything plotwise away, of course). The backdrop is what captured my attention. Spielberg had the sense to bring it home to an American audience. The last thing you see after watching money being spent killing people from another place and time is towers 1 and 2 of the World Trade Center rising above the New York skyline. Magnifique.

2/09/2006

going backwards

Swing is kicking my butt. Period. There's really no nice or flattering way to say it. I left tonight less comfortable with the stuff we did this week than I left last week with the stuff we did then. I honestly think people who claim to hear "triple step, triple step, quick step" or "1 and 2, 1 and 2, rock step" or "oh dear Lord, oh dear Lord, crap crap" in the music are full of it. Or Schizophrenic. Or something. Anything but normal.

But something more normal has happened in my life this week. I like milestones (you may have noticed, if you've been reading for a while). This week, my mail program received its 5,000th email. Now, I'm not sure whether this is a lot or a little. There's really no metric for email volume like there is for mileage on your car. Some enterprising engineer with way too much time on his hands (or hers, no offense ladies) needs to devise a simple conversion, write it in java, and put it on the web to get from emails to mileage.

Something like 1,000 emails equals one year of driving or something like that. And then maybe have different scales for casual users and hardcore email freaks.

You're done with the Risk calculator, so I know you've got time for this. Hop to.

2/08/2006

yay for snow

The big fat fluffy stuff! It is absolutely gorgeous. Just enough to accent the trees and coat the grass, and newly fresh to be white and happy, not the dulled industrial grays of aged slush mixed with rocksalt. That's for tomorrow.

Too bad I'm stuck inside all day.

2/05/2006

thank you all for coming

It was a great excuse to show off the apartment, watch some football, and cook way too much food! And you guys didn't even leave too big a mess.

Maybe leftover brats will make some new friends at work!

2/04/2006

super bowl party tomorrow

You better be there.

Or, here, actually.

2/02/2006

i'm addicted

Even though I totally suck. Nonetheless, the class tonight was very fun. It was huge, too, a lot bigger than what somebody in the beginning class last month said they had.

It's always nice when something reaffirms the voices in your head, or at least their existence and distraction. Seriously. I'm fairly athletic, I have no problem standing for a while and with time I'll make the footwork seem natural; the hardest part by far for me is when the music is added. I actually had an easier time moving about in silence than accompanied by a beat. Why did even marginal musical inclination totally skip my brother and me??

Our nice little dance insructor (he really does seem very cool) came up behind me multiple times during the evening to, uh, get me back in line. At least I wasn't the only one making mistakes...

...but I'm sure mine were the worst :)

I'm definitely going back next week. I need to look like an even bigger fool!