January 27, 2009

quick thoughts on popular music.

here are a handful of thoughts i've had regarding music in the last week or so. don't feel obligated to watch ALL the videos i link to - but you should at least watch the first 10-20 seconds of the video linked in point #4...ready break.

#1. i wish amy winehouse wasn't such a sideshow. she actually makes terrific music and the more i listen to it the more her repulsive life fades out of my mind. she ought to focus on making more music cause then she'd have a lot more fans and a lot less critics/people who think she's a freak. which she is. but MJ's kinda a freak too and helloooo.

#2. last night i dabbled more with itunes genius and was awarded with easily my greatest victory to date: joss stone - what were we thinking. here are tracks 1-13:

and the list of fantastic tracks continued for multiple hours of audio enjoyment. sometimes genius can be disappointing and frustrating. other times it can be extremely rewarding. this was one of those times.

#3. i wish kanye wasn't such a boring interview. the guy is just so awkward and uncomfortable to listen to talk. he's quite the artist, but i think my buddy jon stated it best when he refered to kanye west as a "terrible human". that is not to say that he's morally terrible - he's just bad at being a normal human. pretty good description i think. proof here and here.

#4. the more i hear beyonce's "single ladies (put a ring on it)" the more i like it. the first 15 or so times i heard it - hated it. i thought it was annoying and obnoxious and redundant and blah blah blah. but the 16th time...yessss. also check out this sweet clip my friend rachel showed me...so hilarious. so so so wrong.

#5. lastly, i have decided that gnarls barkley makes the most fantastic music videos on the planet. i could write an entire post about this...probably will sometime. so i'll leave it at that for now.


January 23, 2009

LOST returns.

my relationship with LOST was not an intentional one. i started watching sophomore year for two reasons:

1. some of my new compadres at k-state watched every week on wednesday night and i wanted to fit in.

2. a total babe asked me if i wanted to watch the first season with her.

i didn't watch much television when i was a kid (and by kid i mean before i turned 20) and i had only been committed to one other television show prior to 2005, so when she asked me if i wanted to watch i didn't really know what i was getting myself into. i assumed that i would sit down and enjoy the show, but never did i realize that i would be enthralled as much as i was. i ended up taking the first season home, turning the couch in my living room so that it was about 6 feet from the tv, and parking myself there until 5 am until john, jack, hurley and kate busted open the hatch (only to find out later that there was a secret backdoor the whole time).

since that day the relationship has been rather hot and cold. i started watching the show every week at first, but it became so frustrating that i had to stop. so many questions and never an answer. so i quit watching until season two came out on dvd. my roommates and i pooled our money very unevenly (40-40-10-5-5), bought it, and watched it in a week before season 3 started up. cue relapse and bring on the addiction.

and so it goes with season 3 and now season 4. get bored with it on tv, wait til the next season is about to begin and frantically catch up. addiction, dissatisfaction, relapse, addiction.

so i'm all caught up and fully expecting a moment of dissatisfaction just around the river bend*, but here are the few things that will forever ring true in the world of LOST for me:

- the moment that will forever stand as the Greatest LOST Moment Ever: when Arzt blows himself up at the black rock while lecturing about how temperamental dynamite is. also wins Greatest Insignificant Character Development and Greatest Character Death Ever on Television**.

- there has never been a better show to sit down and watch back-to-back-to-back-to-back-to-back-etc than LOST.

- best decision the writers ever made: killing off shannon. her voice is like an alarm clock with no snooze button.

- never has there been a show to cast more awful female actresses than LOST. examples: maggie grace as shannon, michelle rodriguez as ana lucia, elizabeth mitchell as juliet, shannon again.

- walt will always be the coolest character on the show.

- best use of dramatizing various shrill orchestral noises on a television show ever.

i think that's the list. or at least a few points that i find extremely important to the success of the show. i'm glad that LOST is back in my life for the time being. hope i didn't throw out any spoilers by mistake...knowing that shannon dies isn't necessarily a "spoiler" though. more of a "sigh of relief" so that you know she'll get what's coming to her at some point and you can look forward to it.


* - beyond the shore. somewhere past the sea. ** - not to be confused with Greatest Character Death Ever in Cinema - that would go to the guy who gets another guy's throat chucked at his face and then stabbed in the chest in the pinnacle battle in the original Blade.

January 20, 2009

love is the solution.

i'm becoming increasingly cynical and skeptical of the notion of change in this world. there's so much wrong with this country - this planet actually - that it seems like we'll never solve anything. i was talking with a friend of mine yesterday about how when i was in elementary school there wasn't a war going on overseas like there is now...so what was the problem back then? there's always something. i don't know what life without war and struggle. i don't know a world without race and class disparity. so when i read articles and have conversations with people about how messed up things are and how unfair this planet is i get pretty discouraged. and whats worse - i find myself shrugging my shoulders more so than ever in my life.

yes. i know that even the slightest bit helps, and that sometimes the smallest and most insignificant of things can create success and joy of immeasurable magnitude. but there are some days when i find it so discouraging. there will always be something wrong with this world and the more there is to save it, the more i find it failing, and the more i open my heart and mind to educate myself about the hurt and unfairness in this world the more i feel like i'm doing nothing to change anything and nothing to improve it. even when i actually take physical strides and formulate active plans to begin change i can't help but notice all the points where i could be doing more and where others could be doing more as well.

i can give some money, but money only goes so far in solving problems. i can give food, but its only a matter of time before hunger strikes again - i've only temporarily solved the problem. i can devise a new curriculum for a school or implement a new program to help solve the issues of injustice in communities that need my time and effort, but all ideas have flaws and who's to say that these new ideas are any better than the countless ideas that have been tried and failed before?

this is a pretty pessimistic and unhappy post thus far. if you hardly made it this far then i don't blame you. it's just so often that i find myself wondering if anything anyone does is good enough, and that's a discouraging thought for anyone to have.

of course, the thought that i eventually come to is that ultimately the answer is Jesus and that no matter how messed up this planet is - this is not the whole story and that eventually love wins.

the other question i find myself asking is that if people deny Christ and truly don't believe that love eventually wins...what do they live for? if i were a nonbeliever and i took into account this unfair and inhumane world...i'd be like, "eff that. i quit." obviously i don't use such harsh phrases as a believer (right), but in all seriousness, what would there be to live for? my own temporary success? why would i give a crap about anyone else on this planet if i didn't believe in the Gospel? what would be my purpose? i simply don't understand what the motivation behind thoughts and actions would be if Christ wasn't in the picture.

at the end of these dark and frustrating days i think what we as Christians need to realize is that there are people out there that don't have the same motivation to live as we do. and that while there is suffering and injustice and struggle in this world, the story isn't about making other people's lives easier or more fun or providing them with material needs, but that with those needs ought to come the love of Christ and an encouragement that goes beyond just solving their immediate problem.

"whatever you do - in word or deed - do for the name of Christ Jesus.*" i guess that's what i'm saying. every step we take toward making this planet a better place, we ought to step forward accompanied with Christ's love. no agenda, no budget, no framework for success - Christ's love ought to trump all.

so i guess our goal isn't to just provide. but to provide Christ. this world was messed up when i was born and it'll be messed up when i die. but Christ can grow on earth while i'm here. so that should be my goal. love is the solution.

funny how frustrated ramblings always end up being Scriptural. interesting.


*colossians 3:17

in other news.

probably the most important news of the day:

john buck signs with royals.

also we have a new president. more on that soon.


January 19, 2009

spring 09 courses.

classes this semester:

earth through time - also called "the history of planet earth." also called "the life science that i have to take to graduate in 4 months." ought to be a total pain but it also ought to be an easy class. all the notes posted online and all the points based on three multiple choice exams. prediction: A
family relations & gender roles - also called "an easy yet slightly interesting class that will help fill graduation requirements." a few individuals very close to me have taken this class and gotten easy A's...then again they're both way better students than i am. probably why they've both graduated and i haven't. but i have faith that i can get through just fine. prediction: A
methods of social research (w/ lab) - also called "the class on my sociology course listing that i've been avoiding." basically this course is pretty much a big huge paper. it's deadlines and research and rough drafts and editting. also there is an attendance policy that goes something like, "if you miss three classes you lose 10% of your grade." this is bad news for me. hopefully i can get legitimately interested in what i research. if not....uh oh. prediction: B.
race and ethnic relations - also called "the only class i'm legitimately interested in this semester." it's a discussion oriented and participation based class, and i'm really excited to get involved in some terrific conversations. it's going to be a lot of reading and i'm going to have to put a lot of time and effort into it, but good thing i only have 1 other class that's worth my time. prediction: B

...bowling and tennis. prediction: A's.

ultimately, i'm thinking that my last semester here at kstate might be my best in terms of grades. i'll keep my fingers crossed. and i should probably keep my work ethic up. ought to be a good way to finish off my time at school.


January 16, 2009

semester ten: goals, hopes and prayers.

i graduate in 4 months. exciting. scary. unexpected. there are a lot of words/emotions/reactions that accompany such a feat. but the one that i've felt most the last few weeks is unprepared.

the thing i will be hoping for and praying for most this semester is that God would stir my heart and really stimulate my mind. for the first time in a long time i finally feel like i'm progressing in life - stable relationship, invested friendships, and job opportunities after school - i really feel like the next "stage" of life is upon me. i feel as though i may be progressing physically through life, i may not be moving forward mentally and spiritually.

a few goals for this semester:

pray and listen more.

listen to more Ace of Base.

read and write more.

establish more friends to challenge me and cultivate growth in my life - a beautiful (also famous) friend of mine spoke last night briefly about the importance of accountability within community and i feel like that is something i could use more of. it's something i feel like i have lacked recently. i think i grow most through intentional conversation with others - i got to experience it again over break in conversations with dan, dave, and karlie - and i want that to continue with a myriad of others. so please, if you would like to join me in that venture - let me know. heck you could just comment "yes" to this blog post.

establish my life on a foundation of joy - i don't mean to put words in the mouths of...everyone...but when i was in high school and my first few years of college one word that i think a lot of people would've used to describe my personality would be "joyful". the last couple years - i'm not so sure. that is not to say i have not been happy. happiness is easy, but joy is something different. joy is something more. the last couple weeks i have felt a joy i haven't felt in a few years and it feels incredible.

appreciate manhattan - except maybe for the drivers and the wind.

also not to fail any classes and actually graduate. crossies.

probably not a complete list. but it's a good start. hopefully these are steps of preparation for my life after college. but it's 11:16 and i have to be in class across campus in 14 minutes. ready break.


the call.

the story goes like this:

we're at old chicago and "stronger" by britney spears comes on and i start lip syncing accompanied by subtle dance motions. and my friend matty says, "you've always reminded me of this guy i saw in a youtube video once, and that lip syncing just sealed the deal.*"

so then he posts this on my facebook wall. so then i post it on here because it's eerily similar to me. watch and enjoy.

also to the fellas that did this...high five. i'm actually impressed and love your work. we could be great friends. and maybe twins too...except i'll be honest...i think i'm a better lip syncer than my counterpart.

* - this was paraphrased - not verbatum.

January 13, 2009

big day for the jefes...and luis colon.

alright. today was a huge day in sports. for me at least.

the chiefs have hired scott pioli as their new GM. when carl was fired last month, my reaction went something like this: "YES...now what?" so i've attempted to educate myself, but i still struggle to see what makes a "good" or "bad" general manager. i've gathered bits and pieces here and there, and the two things i keep coming back to and finding most important: experience and passion.

pioli apparently has both. he's been a part of the browns, ravens, and jets management in the 90s and has been leading a contributor in the patriots 'dynasty' of from 2000-2009. here are two terrific quotes from new england patriots' owner robert kraft and head coach bill belichick:

"Scott Pioli was an integral part of the many championships the New England Patriots have celebrated this decade and I would like to thank him for his countless contributions throughout the past nine seasons. Scott is a great evaluator of talent. He is thorough in his evaluations, extremely organized and has done a tremendous job mining all possible resources to help Coach Belichick and his staff field the players needed to win consistently." [Robert Kraft]

"To sum up in words everything Scott Pioli has meant to this organization and to me personally would be difficult, if not impossible. From the day I met him, he has demonstrated a passion for football and respect for the game that is second to none. It has been extremely gratifying for me to follow Scott's career ascension from the bottom of the totem pole in Cleveland to his place as a pillar of championship teams in New England. Now with the opportunity to steer his own ship and a vision of building a winner, there is no more capable, hardworking, loyal, team-oriented person than Scott Pioli." [Bill Belichick]

that means a lot coming from belichick...the guy isn't exactly a quote machine. nor is he the source of any emotion whatsoever.

he's probably going to give herm edwards the ax (good by me) and he'll implement a whole new staff of winners (which i'm also okay with as long as he keeps chan gailey). i'm also pumped to see a) who he drafts b) who he gets out of free agency and c) what he does with larry johnson. as long as we end up with a legitimate pass rush i'll be decently happy.

other sports news i need to address:
in a losing effort at ku, k-state starter luis colon put up 12 points and 6 rebounds in 16 minutes of play. also he fouled out with 12 minutes left in the game but the POINT is that luis was a STAR.

the wildcats were terrible, started the game down 18-0, but with luis at the wheel they clawed back to within 4 points early in the second half, but then he fouled out and all morale was lost. sigh. number 15 can't do everything (yes, he changed his number...fifteen is a much sleeker and impressive number than 50).

anyway. for probably the first time since the play of my life and the day the streak ended do i feel like sports are alive in my life - and nothing really significant happened at all. kstate lost by 16 in allen fieldhouse and the chiefs didn't even play a game - but it feels just fine being a sports fan today. i'll savor it for now. please be sure remind me of this moment a few days from now when it all comes crashing down again. damn it feels good to be a kc sports fan/gangster.

go relish.


January 12, 2009

the words just refuse to come.

i'm sorry to anyone out there who enjoys reading what i have to say. chances are there aren't many of you. chances are i enjoy writing what i have to say more than you enjoy reading what i have to say.

and it's not even that i don't have anything to share with anyone. i do. but for some reason i'm really struggling to convey thoughts on here. oh well. they'll come at some point...probably all at once and you'll quickly jump out of this great depression and into an abundance of blog posts. hopefully it isn't overwhelming. hopefully it comes sometime soon.

however i must brag before i go. i got 100% on all three of these this morning:

name all 9 original clue rooms here.
name all 10 muppet babies here.
name all 28 monopoly properties here.


January 08, 2009

quick! last minute prediction!

bcs championship game prediction:

OU 42 UF 33


the suspense of the hebrew bible.

imagine the excitement of all the people of the world when Jesus was born. they've got all these prophets piling up prophesies of how eventually David's genealogy would produce the 'prince of peace' who was going to pull all the people of the world out of exile. and then one day that fella just shows up. boom goes the dyno. woah.

christmas has come and gone. i know. but its still cool to think about Christ's* birth. they had the old testament - or i guess the hebrew bible beacuse it wasn't 'old' yet - it reads like a story, genesis to malachi, and it ends with SO MUCH SUSPENSE. i'd never realized the magnitude of the suspense the old testament holds without the new testament attached.

essentially all these people have been sitting around waiting for their savior to redeem them for years and years and years. the story reaches a climax in the hebrew bible with a cluster of prophets telling over and over and over about this dude that's gonna come and rule forever.

and then one day he comes. and there was much rejoicing. talk about awesome. and over the next 32ish years that savior who had been foretold about countless times is walking around on the earth creating the story that we've now been familiar with for the last 2000+ years.

sometimes i fail to realize the importance of historical events because...well...they've already happened. i don't think i'm the only one with this problem. but sometimes i have thoughts like this one where i realize the intensity and excitement involved in stories of the past - and in this case the most important story to ever take place.

this isn't monumental i suppose, but it was a cool reality for me. it's reminded me of the joy and meaining that should be associated with the name of Jesus** - his name and story ought to come with great rejoicing and a giant exhale of relief...the reaction that was felt 2000 years ago should still ring true.

just some thoughts.


* - sometimes i intentionally avoid using the name "Jesus" in the posessive form cause i have no idea how to add the apostrophe. same with the name chris, the last name jones and the state of illinois. chris'? joneses? illinois's? ** - other times i avoid the apostrophe altogether by switching up the phrasing and utilizing the word "of".

January 05, 2009

videography? well this is unexpected.

i haven't done video shooting and editing for about 4 years now.

you see, my best friend is dropping out of school so that he can pick up where he left off after high school and pursue a life of shooting, editing and producing wedding videos. i hadn't really thought about doing anything remotely related to film in since freshman year of college when i went to k-state as a journalism and mass communication major, but when he told me this i became immediately jealous for two reasons:

1. i've always wanted to quit school.
2. i would love to pursue a career filming things again.

my first thought was "wow. that'd be cool if i could do that with him." but the conversation ended and dissolved into a new age game of Clue. i didn't think of of it at all yesterday, but this same friend and i were talking briefly about an hour ago and he said "hey you know how i'm going to start doing video stuff again? i was thinking that you could help me with it when you're done in may."

uh. yes.

so my trip up to the bvnw broadcast tech studio next week has now flipped drastically from a 'lets visit high school teachers' trip to a 'i need to ask a million questions regarding my future' trip.

i have absolutely no idea what this means or how serious this venture will be for my life. but i'm keeping it on my radar for the next 4 months while i finish up school. i still plan on going back to hillcrest and focusing my life on a future in youth ministry, but i haven't considered a life of video editing for about 4 years now and it is exciting me so much. who knows. just an exciting potential development for me.


January 02, 2009

okay. let's do this.

i haven't updated in more than two weeks now. this is pitiful for two reasons:

1. a boatload of exciting things have happened in the last two weeks that i could easily write about on here.
2. i'm on break so technically i should have plenty of time to be writing on here.

i've been neglecting this lil guy. i'm sorry guys. really. i know at least one of you was near an anxiety attack due to my lack of updating.

things i've been up to since my last post (december 15):

christmas happened. i made pretty much all my gifts this year. i'll probably try my best to do that every christmas from here on out. it makes the entire process of giving gifts way more exciting. when we were unwrapping gifts at my house i kept forgetting when it was my turn to open because i was so excited to get to the next gift i made.

i travelled to iowa and oklahoma to visit family. love you all.

i've spent bunches and bunches of time with my excessively hot girlfriend. negro leagues museum, liberty memorial, mccoys, fork and screen, cheesecake factory, target like 43 times, iowa, and you can add the konza to that list too - we leave for manhattan today.

i've lost near all interest in sports. unless there is a big xii bowl game on tv i have very little interest. the chiefs ended their season with an impressive loss agianst a measly bengals team. team i'm rooting for in the playoffs: miami. maybe the greatest thing that happened the entire nfl regular season: the broncos miss the playoffs. hilarious.

thats just a handful. expect more posts starting back up pretty soon. i plan on utilizing january 5 - january 15 to get some reading and thinking accomplished. i haven't done much of either since finals week. semesters end and i shut off for a few weeks so i can recover mentally. but today - for the first time since dec 15 - i feel good about fielding information and formuating thoughts. so thats cool.

thats all i have to say about that. happy 2009 everyone.