My Beard

I have been fascinated with Jewish History as of late and I read this recently:

The Talmud describes the beard as an “adornment of the face” and implies that a beardless man cannot be said to be handsome.

Quote of the Moment

“The real art of conversation is not only to say the right thing at the right place but to leave unsaid the wrong thing at the tempting moment.”

– Dorothy Nevill

One Down

For those of you who may not know, I have returned to school to finish my Bachelors degree. I am currently working through the Biola BOLD program, which offers degree in Organizational Leadership. At first I thought the degree was some sort of a giveaway degree but after completing my first class I have come to see that this degree is very well planed out and has a whole lot to teach me.

Just this past Tuesday I completed my first class, Group and Organization Behavior. I learned a tremendous amount in this class. This course is the first you take in the program mainly because I am going to have the same class members for the next 16 months so we had better be able to function as a group. Also, this class included some great portions on teamwork, group problem solving, conflict, and listening. This really would be a great class for anybody who may possibly have to work in a team at sometime.

So that is one down and 14 more to go. Can I do it? Will I be able to hold out? Will they ever bring back the All Crunchberries cereal? Who really knows.

Dynamic Parables

Paul Littleton is a Pastor in Oklahoma, whose Blog I regularly read. Often he has posts about things that I had been thinking about in my own life. Recently he talked about how Jesus was a a radical story teller whose stories shocked those who were listening by going against the norm. He told stories that contradicted the thinking of the day or that was different of that which was being taught in the synagogue.

Dallas Willard Quote

“The ultimate freedom we have as human beings is the power to select what we will allow our minds to dwell upon. It is in our thoughts that the first movements toward the renovation of the heart occur. Thoughts are the place wherewe can and must begin to change.”

-Dallas Willard

True, so true.

P.J. O’Rouke

A great quote of his:

“I like to think of my behavior in the sixties as a ‘learning experience.’ Then again, I like to think of anything stupid I’ve done as a ‘learning experience.’ It makes me feel less stupid.”

I someday hope to say that about my behavior from 1995 to 2005.

My Tastes

I like to consider myself a man of eclectic tastes. I like all types of music, I dig Garth Brooks as much as Charles Mingus, I can laugh at stunt from those Jackass crew just as easily as I can enjoy a witty P.J. O’Rourke column. However, I found that Labor Day weekend I really covered a lot of much diversified entertainment.

It all pretty much started Thursday, August 31st when I was at home that evening with little or nothing to do. I was browsing the channels when I realized one of the most prominent pop culture moments from my youth was being broadcast; namely the 2006 MTV Video Music Awards. I remember back in High School when this used to be the crowning pop culture moment of the year. All your favorite bands, all the hit singles, and all the cool videos, rolled into one three hour event. I can safely say I hadn’t seen a VMA show in probably 5 plus years. The last year I really remembered the show was the big Puff Daddy performance dedicated to Notorious B.I.G., oh, wait, doesn’t he do that every year? Maybe not, anywho, I decided to sit down and watch it this year just to reconnect with my roots, and to make me feel younger since I am 25 years old and I think it is safe to say 1/8 of the hairs on my head are now grey.
My overall impression of the ordeal, very overrated. Jack Black not that funny and pretty much a one joke comedian. Don’t get me wrong he is good at what he does best, but other then that, not too funny and his material was just lacking. The performances, not that great, where was my lesbian kiss or extreme pyrotechnics or gospel choir? I was under whelmed and realized I have not missed out on anything in pop music in the last few years.

On Friday, September 1st we kicked it up a notch when Amy and I went and saw John Williams performing at the Hollywood Bowl with the L.A. Philharmonic. Suffice he is amazing and has written some of the most memorable music I can think of. He started off the evening performing a series movie music pieces from the golden age of movies, I cannot remember the pieces or movies they were form but suffice to say they were very engaging and fun to listen too. To finish off the first half of the evening he then performed a medley of Bernard Herman pieces from various Hitchcock films. Wow, that was some great music. We then had a lovely 20 minute intermission which consisted of eating Mentos and drinking Pepsi.
The second half of the show is what rocked the joint, Mr. Williams started bringing out his own music. We heard pieces from Hook, E.T., and Superman then we had a medley of great pieces from Spielberg and Lucas, which pretty brought down the house. And the cool thing was the lighting effects going on around the bowl during these pieces corresponded to the music. Like a Red and Blue motif for Superman, and aqua color for Jaws, a nighttime blue for E.T.. Either way it rocked and it was fun to see all the nerds bring out their lightsabers for anything Star Wars related. He then bowed and concluded the night to begin his encores. Which consisted of Jurassic Park, Harry Potter, the Imperial March (So cool), and then he capped off the evening with a very interesting rendition of the NBC news theme. No fireworks of Raiders theme, just the music we hear Brian Williams talk over every night. I am not sure how to respond to that, but I enjoyed the night immensely and plan to attend next year.

That Saturday then led to the best day of the Antelope Valley Fair, the Rural Olympics. My Dad was once again the Emcee and this was the last year my Grandfather planned on participating after 47 year of being there, so it was a bit sentimental. It was good clean pure fun. The stands were pack and the racing was exciting. My Dad had a really great presentation for the Rural Olympics hall of fame, that came off really well and really honored the guys who had been involved with the Olympics for a long time. But hey you can’t beat hay bale stealing, potato stabbing, stake racing and truck backing. I really do enjoy the event and almost wish I had the skills or equipment to participate.

So there you have it. I basically spent Sunday and Monday recovering from all the activity. I only have a few more weeks left before I start attending school again at Biola to finish my degree, but that is a whole other bag-o-worms.

“Crocodile Hunter” Irwin dies

I read that the “Crocodile Hunter” Steve Irwin dies today and I got quite sad. From the interviews I saw of him, and his shows, which I occasionally watched, he seem like a really nice guy, who loved animals and showing exotic animals to people up close. He received criticism for the way he went about it, but I think he just loved animals that much, that he wanted to interact with them, rather then just watch from afar.

Quote of the Moment

“Be ashamed to die until you have won some victory for humanity.”
-Horace Mann

I found that quote via the author A.J. Jacobs, but wow, that really makes you think and evaluate what you are doing with your life.

A New Day

It is a new day, and time for a new blog. I was bloging way back before it was popular and before there was a term “Blogospehere”, but all I ever really talked about was silliness and nothing that serious. Also, I often just put up a front and didn’t say what I was really thinking, but I assume it didn’t really mean much, since no one every really read my old blog anyways. So, oh well. Now I do hope to get serious about this and try to post something interesting and relevant.

At least that is what I hope to do. Also I hope to be open and honest, about much of my life, I really don’t worry about it too much. No one will really ever read this and if they do, then I shouldn’t be afraid of it. Leading an open unashamed life is something I should be proud of. So we shall see.

“Blogito ergo sum.”