And Another Thing…

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Baal’s Stock Portfolio Doesn’t Look To Good

Apparently, prayer meetings are being held on Wall Street to address the economy. I would really like to hear one of those prayers:

“Lord, please save us from the consequences of our greed, materialism, and irresponsibility. In Jesus’ name, amen.”

The kicker for me is the photo below. Take a look at it and then read Exodus 32. I added my own caption, but feel free to submit one of your own in the comments.

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Filed under: Faith and Religion, , , , ,

Well, so much for that

I was saddened to learn that Cascade College, the only institution of higher learning in the Northwest affiliated with the churches of Christ, will shut down at the end of the spring 2009 semester.

Despite not having attended there (I was already a college graduate when Cascade first opened for business in August 1994) I have several memories of the place. The summer before my senior year of college I interned as a youth minister with the church of Christ in Richland, WA. I took the kids in the youth group to GNEW (Great Northwest Evangelism Workshop). Over the course of the week I got to meet a bunch of people who were going to be involved in the opening of Cascade. They seemed so excited about what they were engaged in. I was so envious of them. I remember thinking, “What a once-in-a-lifetime experience, to help build a college from the ground up.”

A few years later, during my tenure as a youth minister in Portland, OR (where Cascade is located) I got to know more faculty and staff from the school; people that I was pleased to count as friends. I am sorry for them and the students.

So this leaves our fellowship with Rochester College, Pepperdine University, and Ohio Valley University as our only schools outside of the Bible belt. I wonder how they are staying afloat. I suppose that Pepperdine’s approach is to be super-expensive, but what about the others?

I think that Christian colleges can be a good thing, a real boon to the kingdom. I do have my quibbles with how they do things, but that doesn’t mean that I would throw the baby out with the bath water. I don’t like the hypocrisy of the rules. I am more than a little uncomfortable with some of our schools’ readiness to hop in bed with a certain political party. And I detest the recruitment rhetoric that administrators and admissions counselors use to try and guilt our teenagers into attending these schools. I once heard a Christian college president say that “Every college student in the church should be attending a Christian college.” Screw you, state school campus ministries! Who needs you? [Ron Clark, a church-planter in Portland, has an interesting take on this]

I have often wondered why our fellowship is so provincial. Why can’t we get a meaningful foothold anywhere outside of Alabama, Arkansas, Mississippi, Oklahoma, Tennessee, and Texas? What do you readers think?

Filed under: Faith and Religion, School, , , , , , , , , ,

He blinded kids with science

Richard Dawkins, he of The God Delusion and the Atheist Bus Movement in London, seems to have landed on the same side as the fundamentalists for whom he shows such contempt, at least on one issue.

He thinks Harry Potter is eeeviiil!

The prominent atheist is stepping down from his post at Oxford University to write a book aimed at youngsters in which he will warn them against believing in “anti-scientific” fairytales.

Prof Hawkins said: “The book I write next year will be a children’s book on how to think about the world, science thinking contrasted with mythical thinking.

“I haven’t read Harry Potter, I have read Pullman who is the other leading children’s author that one might mention and I love his books. I don’t know what to think about magic and fairy tales.”

Prof Dawkins said he wanted to look at the effects of “bringing children up to believe in spells and wizards”.

“I think it is anti-scientific – whether that has a pernicious effect, I don’t know,” he told More4 News.

“I think looking back to my own childhood, the fact that so many of the stories I read allowed the possibility of frogs turning into princes, whether that has a sort of insidious affect on rationality, I’m not sure. Perhaps it’s something for research.”

Alright, so, let’s see…he thinks that children actually believe in Harry and the rest of the Hogwarts gang? And he thinks Christians are credulous?

Bad children, with your imaginations and flights of fancy! No more storybooks for you, just science textbooks!

I think I may try my hand at writing a children’s book in which the heroes are people who have imagination and some sense of wonder and the villain is a self-important, supercilious old fart who can’t stand that people put any trust whatsoever in things that can’t be proved empirically and [shudder] actually draw some joy from their beliefs and imaginations.

But no, that’s too far-fetched, isn’t it?

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Quick Hits IX: Odgie Takes Manhattan

I am getting over a bout of walking pneumonia, which sucks real bad like. The doctor put me on a Z-pack; and while the pneumonia is out of my system I am still coughing the nasties out.

                                   

I am pleasantly surprised by how much I am enjoying my internship at Child Protective Services. Like most people, I was operating on a stereotype about the work that they do: I thought CPS were the social workers who come into peoples homes and take their children. I also expected every case to be a descent into the 9th circle of Hell: black eyes, broken bones, children living in filth and squalor. The reality is that it is not that bad. Yes, we sometimes do have to take children out of their homes, but only in cases of imminent danger from abuse or neglect. And those cases are rare. Most of what we do is intervene in stressful family situations and insure the safety of the children by providing support to the parents. All of my clinical skills and capacities for judgment are being put to the test, and whether I stay or go next May I know that I will learn a great deal from the experience and be a better professional for it. But holding down my paying gig and the internship is still keeping me very, very tired just about all of the time.

                                   

I managed to catch up on the first season of Life via Netflix, and I am looking forward to watching the new season on my DVR. It’s a cool show. And I really wish that Heroes would cut it with the time travel. It’s becoming a story-telling crutch. What are you watching, old and new? Any recommendations?

                                   

I still haven’t decided who I am going to vote for, but I am leaning towards the candidate whose campaign doesn’t leave &*^%! robo-messages on my voice mail and choke my mailbox with flyers. Does anyone really think that works?

                                   

For those who haven’t heard, it appear that Star Trek is being re-booted ~ a new movie is coming out next year with a new cast playing young Kirk, Spock, McCoy, et. al. On the one hand, I think that this might be a good idea: maybe they can preserve all of the cool stuff from the franchise (aliens, spaceships, explosions, phasers, and green-skinned babes in bikinis) while getting rid of the lame (wooden acting; cheesy sets; unimaginative designs for aliens; the sterile, monotonous vision of humanity’s future; and the stifling political correctness of the later series). Maybe it will be a little more like Battlestar Galactica (the new version) and Firefly. That could be very cool. But on the other hand, there is also the possibility that it will “inspire” a whole new generation of kids to not date, not move out of their parents’ homes when they grow up, learn to speak Klingon, and dress up in costumes and go to conventions. It’s a cost-benefit analysis, folks.

                                   

Mystery quote: 

“This guy could be the Krishna finger killer.”

Filed under: Quick Hits, , , , , ,

My Morning Jacket – “I’m Amazed”

My friend Matt asked me a good question the other day, so now I put it to you. Listen to this tune and ask yourselves why these guys are not one of the biggest bands in the U.S.

Filed under: Music, ,

The Most Disturbing Movie Poster of All Time

I have nothing but respect for Clint Eastwood. He made one of my favorite movies of all time. And I can take Angelina Jolie in small doses. But this poster gives me the creeps.

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Filed under: Movies, , , ,

Tagalicious

My sister-in-law Kathi tagged me in one of those pass-along blog things. Since this is the only time I have ever gotten one I will cheerfully pass on the goodness:

Four things I did today:

  1. Got up
  2. Walked Max
  3. Met with my field supervisor and my academic liaison at my internship
  4. Cursed Bill Gates and Microsoft for that train wreck that they call Windows Vista

Four things on my to-do list:

  1. Fill out some Federal job applications (quite possible the most tedious process in history)
  2. Start on my next paper for class
  3. Reply to the voices in my head
  4. Trim my goatee

Four of my guiltiest pleasures:

  1. Charlie the Unicorn
  2. Finding subtle (?) ways to slip my knowledge of film, books, and music into casual conversation
  3. Indulging my narcissism through blogging
  4. Laughing at the crap that passes for music on most radio

Four random facts about me:

  1. The only thing that keeps me from being a great musician is my complete lack of musical talent
  2. Every time I hear an American fake a Jamaican accent, I want to punch him or her in the throat
  3. The song Here Comes the Night by Them (Van Morrison’s first band) makes me laugh uncontrollably every time I hear it, and I don’t know why
  4. I harbor fantasies of writing a book someday

And since I am supposed to tag 4 others, I pick:

Johnny V

Dave B

Becky

JR

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The Subtlety of Subtitling

I don’t know where this list originated, but it makes for a good read. These English subtitles to Hong Kong action movies show how difficult bridging the language gap can be.

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Filed under: Movies, ,

I’m Jimmy Stewart

Or at least that’s my result according to The Classic Leading Man Test at HelloQuizzie. Here’s what it says:

You scored 24% Tough, 10% Roguish, 62% Friendly, and 10% Charming!

Jimmy Stewart

You are the fun and friendly boy next door, the classic nice guy who still manages to get the girl most of the time. You’re every nice girl’s dreamboat, open and kind, nutty and charming, even a little mischievous at times, but always a real stand up guy. You’re dependable and forthright, and women are drawn to your reliability, even as they’re dazzled by your sense of adventure and fun. You try to be tough when you need to be, and will gladly stand up for any damsel in distress, but you’d rather catch a girl with a little bit of flair. Your leading ladies include Jean Arthur and Donna Reed, those sweet girl-next-door types.

So how about you? Head on over and see what your results are.

Filed under: Movies, , ,

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