Friday, December 28, 2007

One Year Birthday

Happy Birthday to this blog!! December 26th, 2006 was the day. And to celebrate... I'm shutting it down. Well, that's the plan, at least. I'm trying my hands at iWeb and seeing where that takes me. I knew blogger was doomed from the start (glitchy and limited, are we?), but I just wanted to try the whole blog thing out. And tried it has. So now to what will hopefully be bigger and better... I introduce:

My New Blog

It is a part of my whole new site that I have launched. It's not done yet, but you can have a look for yourself and tell me what you think.

Sorry for the lack of updates lately. I got too busy and was without a computer for a month. By the time I decided to reorganize my life and make room for things such as blogging, I decided to relaunch altogether. Therefore, all my energies of late have been put into getting that site off the ground. Hope you understand?

You should start seeing regular updates at the new site soon... If you would be so kind, please change your links to:

Blogger, it's been fun. See you at the other site :o)

Sunday, September 23, 2007

Life of Late

Sometimes taking life too seriously is a disease that eats away at your soul. Fortunately, only about a quarter my soul was gone this time before I decided to take antibiotics.

Friday, September 14, 2007

The Second September

A September ago now I had a wonderful trip. There must be something magical about that little ex-church in the center of Nashville... it somehow pulls you and throws you into a place somewhere quite far away actually. Last September, it was away from the hell of a new life that I had found around me. From the groans of my soul and the constant lump that burrowed in my throat. And then he came out, dressed in those colorful wings, as if he knew exactly where he would take all of us and was merely toying with our sense of stability. "What the water wants is hurricanes," Sufjan humbly spouted to the crowds on his opening lines. "I have a red kite; I'll put you right in it. I'll show you the sky." And that's exactly what happened.

This September another escape occurred, though one of slightly different dynamics. My soul was not rotting; my times have not been hard. My times have just been nonexistent. I sit here and I honestly cannot remember the last time I had the ability to sit and think, not worrying about a meeting I had in five minutes or a paper that was waiting to be written. But yesterday, a Irish man once again used the Ryman as a portal to access another world. It was a world where time didn't really seem to flow at all, where my busyness was drunken away. And it was incredible. What an experience. Even without his beloved Lisa, his vocals that soared from one extreme to another made up for the difference. Clocking in at an hour and 45 minutes of straight playing time, unsupported, it was a gem of a night. The famed drunken "Cheers Darlin' " finale couldn't have been done better, and I don't think I've ever seen an exit from the stage as masterfully executed and as appropriate to the evening as the one that played out before my eyes there, bringing me back to the present world a new and freed person.

Two different Septembers and two different circumstances, yet the same effect. September at the Ryman has brought me into the year once again. I wonder what will greet me for the next one.

Wednesday, September 05, 2007

Bongo vs. Smile

As much as it has felt like home, upon returning to Belmont a few weeks ago, that is, I have realized that I have been deceived. But as I finish up my first (of many) Bongo porch happenings of the year, I realized that I am now, truly, home. Belmont could not exist without this quaint porch, as so many of my friends have earlier stated, probably in ways much more eloquent than myself. But this Bongo trip was marked by a peculiar occasion. Smiles. Yes, I was quite taken back really. Not that I was never given smiles by the wonderful baristas and such, but the overwhelming "I don't give a (fill in expletive as according to your degree of hard core-ness)" attitude is a hallmark at this place. And now, I stand at the coffee prep table getting all the my precious toppings with which I am about froth my coffee, and smiles are invading my personal space from everywhere. From all the employees -- one of which are even humming and another even taking the time to ask my how my day was thus far. Just now one came up to me, offered to take my plate, and then had a conversation with the chap sitting next to me about how he loves his dog. To top it off -- wonderful friends that give some the best good morning hugs I've known just made their presence known as well. I really don't know what just happened. I am not sure to be happy at the sudden turn of happiness or not. Peculiar dilemma. humpf

Sunday, September 02, 2007

Summer 07, A Playlist

Uh-hum.. *clears throat*... My summer playlist is finally here. A little late, but hey, it's only Labor Day, right? I thought about pulling out a quote from each of the songs like I did last semester, but quite frankly, I'm too busy and tired to do that this time 'round. Let me know if you wanna hear the songs and I'll figure something out. Hope you enjoy. Your thoughts would be much appreciated.

Tuesday, August 28, 2007

Control Room

Tonight in my Mass Media and Society class, I was hit over the head. For the second part of the class, we watched Control Room, a documentary of Al-Jazeera in the early days of the present Iraq War. It is one of those films that I believe every American should be required to see. It's a documentary, so naturally, there is a bias involved. I can't name a documentary where there isn't. But it does a great job of showing both sides of the spectrum while asking the question, "Does objectivity even exist?"

As J. Hoberman of the Village Voice puts it:

This absorbing, significant, and shamelessly entertaining movie not only goes through the looking glass but, no less significantly, turns the mirror back on us.

Personally, after seeing the film my heart is once again quite broken over the state of our world and the state of humanity. I am both revolted and devastated. Please do yourself a favor and, maybe for just a moment, lift the veil of Americanism up from over your eyes. Watch the documentary. See what some people's world is really like. See the suffering, see the various perspectives, see the people trying to find the white and black in a gray world. It will be worth it. Check out the documentary below:

Friday, August 24, 2007

A Reprieve and a Return

Thank you for allowing me the break from this addiction/burden that I needed. Starting my second year at college and getting everything lined up that needs to be lined up has been more taxing on me than I thought it would, though I feel great about where I am. I took this Friday night, after some casual Wii playing with some friends, to spend with God and reflect on where I am and find guidance for where I am going. In my journal gazing, I ran across some timely words:

"A ship in harbor is safe, but that is not what ships are built for."
-- John Shedd

"Our greatest fear should not be of failure, but of succeeding at something that doesn't really matter."

Sunday, August 12, 2007

Thoughts, Sunday, August 12th, 2007, 11:47pm

Staring, hoping, into the dark chasm hanging up above, that some of those lights will flash before my eyes again, leaving its tail behind for a few seconds for dramatic effect. Mesmerized is a good word, I think. It's things like meteor showers that have opened me up again lately.

And it's things like gliding, flying even, above what almost seems like glass while that golden orb takes its final bow to complete its performance in yet another act of the story of the cosmos. Standing on the edge of that big boat, admiring the Caribbean water, which really is quite as transparent as your imagination would have dreamed of but never quite hoped for in fear that it could never live up to the expectation. On this day there are no waves, and even the subatomic particles only God is small enough for remain fixed and calm. You really are soaring above a sea of glass. And to make it that much more impalpable, untouchable, sacred, just as you thought it was already too much, a creature, a magical creature, a dolphin, makes her dramatic appearance. And then another. And another. And there's a family of them--all dancing as the sun sets gently over the waters.

Or how it turns into the great abyss. Completely dark in every directions. It's really no wonder they thought you could fall off the edge of the world. I almost believed it myself. The tiny lanterns hung up above are magnificent. There must be a million of them. Almost. You could try counting, but I'm pretty sure you'd never get to an end. New ones always seem to slide out from underneath their cover, only very dimly at first. And the longer you stare, the more you see. But never to be outdone by the Old Man himself, shining down quite pompously to his subject Earth. His rays getting wider and wider as they approach on the water. And however fast your vessel is moving, on the water, the rays never cease to follow, the moon with a sly grin at your futile attempt. Impressive he is, though. The guardian of the night sky, keeping all in order in stead of the now resting sun. What a portrait set before you. What a symphony of colors and emotions. The wind in your hair reminds you that you are alive. Not in a metaphorical, adolescent kind of way, but solemnly alive, taking a breath and then one after that. That you have blood running underneath that flesh of yours. That you exist in something bigger. That your life is connected, even to the wind in your hair that will inevitable continue and rush into another innocent admirer's hair on the next ship 25 miles behind. Connected in those rare occasions that lights are seen somewhere on the horizon. Connected to the life it mandates. Some lighthouse, some village, some fisherman in his boat... some soul that is breathing along with you.

All of these things I have experienced in the last week have been a growing signal to me. A wise high school English teacher once tried to teach me about life--and against my arrogantly futile internal attempts to stop her (my 17 year old mind was obviously much more aware of my world than she was)--apparently she succeeded. I'm not sure if she even tried to teach me about life, come to think of it. I think it just happened out of her passion for it. For the gritty, raw, aspects of it. But as Mr. Camus rightly screams from his pen, so she screamed from her living, the utter importance of action and reflection. The gravity of doing and then being what has been done. And strangely enough, it has made a lot of sense of life lately. The coming of April and Displace Me marked a new chapter in my life. I moved past the cage that had become reflection into the freedom of action. And that path took me out of my wallows, out of the rut, and into summer. Honestly, I haven't looked back.

Until the meteor shower. Until the sunset. Until the night at sea. It crept back into me. And the more and more as I clutch this pen, I know. It's here again. A new chapter, a new reflection. Even as my life is inevitably going to erupt into busyness, responsibilities, deadlines, and events, it won't stop my pen. It feels new, it feels fresh. I feel that this chapter is going to be positive--one of new realizations, of forming into the new man that I am becoming. And I am gladly welcoming this positive spirit that has seemed to have invaded me. You are welcome any time.

The kiddos (said in presumptuous nose-in-the-air because I'm a cool college kid tone) are sleeping now--waking up in only a few hours to find the first day of school staring them down. A chance for new beginnings, new somethings, new anythings. And I would be lying to myself in some small sense if I did not say that at least part of me were jealous. I mean not really--but the excitement of seeing those familiar faces again, of the opportunities the year would bring, of figuring out how I would define the new year: the semester's play, model UN, a new girlfriend, my AP classmates as we battled for that coveted 5, the campus ministry; of the prospect of another season of friday night football, of before school/after school hangouts, of youth group times, of merely growing up, experiencing life, and understanding more of my world. Oh, the innocence of it all. I had life too well.

It is hard to look ahead when such fond memories are all around, though I feel as if it is my time now. Different, that is for sure, but this stage will be one I look fondly back upon as well. Here's to a good one.

Attention all School-Goers (and Non-School-Goers too)

Tomorrow's the big day...

Make sure you lay out your clothes, make a sack lunch, get your books together, set your alarm....

...and prepare to shoot your friends to end a war.

We're talking laser tag for Invisible Children. You may have your first day of school tomorrow, but what could be better than Laser Chase for a cause in the afternoon?

Just come into the LC anytime between 1 and 9 pm to play one, two, three, or why not even ten games of laser tag?

Remember, 50% of all profits made tomorrow will go straight to Invisible Children. We will also be showing the newest media out of IC at the event. Can you think of anything better? I can't.

Check out for directions. See you there...

Lasers > Guns

Saturday, August 11, 2007

Shoot Your Friends To End A War

So blogosphere,

I am organizing an Invisible Children benefit on Monday, and I would really appreciate your help. Here's the deal:

Come in to Laser Chase in Cool Springs, TN anytime between 1pm and 9pm on Monday, August 13th. Play a normal game (or games) of laser tag, and at the end of the day, Laser Chase has agreed to give 50% of their profits to the nonprofit Invisible Children. It's that simple. We will also be showing some new Invisible Children media at the event as well. The media alone is worth stopping by the event.

It's a nice, family environment, so it's safe and fun for the whole family. In fact, working at Laser Chase, I see that it's usually the adults that have more fun than the kids they bring! For those of you who unfortunately have your first day of school on the 13th, cheer up! It's only a half day, and the second half you can spend with you friends having fun and playing laser tag, all while helping to end the war in Uganda. Sounds too good to be true, doesn't it?

You can get directions and information about Laser Chase through their website, or you can visit the benefit's facebook event page here.

So please make every attempt possible to bring all of your friends and families to this event this Monday. You won't regret it. And if you are feeling especially nice, I would love for you to repost this on your blog and try to help me spread the word. I would love to see hundreds and hundreds of people all playing laser tag for a cause on Monday!

Just remember, shoot lasers, not guns!

Friday, August 10, 2007


I have returned from my great saga and am quite pissed that an ocean isn't outside of my window anymore :o). There has been much contemplation and consideration of life and cruise-endom in my little brain in the last few days, and in time hopefully I will share all of these thoughts and various perspectives that I had on this relatively new phenomena. But for now, I must sleep, as I have 12 hours of hungry customers to please tomorrow at my wonderful job that is a server at The Franklin Chop House. Maybe I'll see you there?

Friday, August 03, 2007

An Absence

I am currently in Montgomery, AL, sitting in the dark while the rest of my family is counting sheep, staring into this bright light to inform the world that I will be unavailable for the next week. I will be on quite a large boat, stuffing myself with as much food as I can fit into my body, and soaking in the warm sun. It's my first cruise, and I am quite excited. I'll be sure to update everyone when I get back!