Sunday, November 23, 2008


I've had this simple quote in my head for several days and have tried to develop a post around it. But I have no time to be creative these days, so I'll just share it with you. It's from the opening note of Wendy Bounds' Little Chapel on the River: A Pub, a Town, and the Search for what Matters Most. It makes me think of my friends, old and new, and that wonderful sacred space that occupies the air between us.

To anyone who has ever known a spot like this, a spot that makes you feel more at home sometimes than home itself, I'd just like to add, go there if you still can. Be there. And don't wait for tomorrow. Go today.

Thursday, November 20, 2008


Dear Friends,

On Tuesday I attended the funeral of someone who was one of my best childhood friends. It seems I am destined to become a pro at this sort of thing much earlier than I would like.

This was not like Kyle. That death ripped a whole out of my life and forced me to reorder, rethink. To lay in the ashes until the tears refused to come anymore.

The death of Kevin has caused me great sadness. But we had been functionally removed from each others life for many years, save the once every few months email and once every few years lunch. The sadness I feel is less acute, more bearable, but also more fearful, shameful. Things should not happen this way. When you care about someone, you stay in touch. You let the moments linger, clock be damned.

Several years ago, in pondering how the disciples of Jesus could have left to prepare for the Sabbath after his death, I posted these thoughts...

How could they do this? How could they be so committed to these rituals that they would leave the body of the man who was their life for the previous three years, just so they could get ready for Sabbath.

I ponder this and I realize, they didn't know.

When Kyle died we became many things and one of them is this: We became a lingering people. In the emergency room and at the memorial service, at the funeral and at the grave site, we all lingered around for long periods of time. Part of this was to be with each other and part of it was to find out information but I can't help but believe that part of the reason we lingered is this: At the very core of who we are as a people, as the global and local people of The Way, is the knowledge of resurrection.

That first group of Jesus' followers left because they thought that was all there is, so they may as well just return to life as usual. We know different and when someone we love dies we are in on the secret.

We should all linger around each other a little longer...

Tuesday, November 11, 2008

Silly Me...

Today I was standing at the information desk at work, thinking that one of my coworkers was standing behind me. I was preparing to express my slight amount of shock at the fact that Freakonomics isn't out in paperback yet. (These are the important things that occupy my mind.) So I began my sentence "Can you believe Freakonomics..." In mid sentence I started turning around to look at the recepient of my feigned tirade and noticed whoever was there before was no longer standing there, and I was all alone. Here is how the complete sentence came out... "Can you believe Freakonomics... oh look, there's no one here to listen to me talk."

But there was a customer around the corner. After she picked herself off the ground from laughing she let me know I could talk to her. So me and a complete stranger had a discussion about how crazy it is that Freakonomics isn't out in paperback yet.

It was funny to me...

Sunday, November 02, 2008


Today is the last day of a relatively long vacation from work. It has been good to be able to devote some more time to school, both the learning part and the social part. Tomorrow I go back to the craziness that is full time work and full time school. Amidst the flurry of activity, this will probably be my last chance to share my election thoughts. (I know you've all been holding your breath...)

My prediction: It will be a landslide for Obama and it will be called very early in the night. The media is trying to create a story that McCain is closing in, but they have to do that in order to get people to tune in on Tuesday night. It's better for their pocketbooks than if people think the election is a done deal. Oh, and also, it'll be called early, probably by 10:00p.m. All it will take is for either Virginia or Florida to go Obama's way. After that happens, then McCain will have to win several states that Bush lost in '04 in order to make up for the losses.

Now, for my (perhaps surprising) analysis...

When Wednesday comes, it will be a great moment for America. I really believe that. Though our historic demons of racism will always be with us in some form, they will have been relegated to the shed out back where we put things to collect dust. A large part of our reputation that has been squandered over the past eight years will be restored and the leaders of the most rogue countries of the earth will have a harder time convincing their people that the United States is as evil as they had once thought. I truly believe an Obama administration will help foster a higher level of political discourse that makes it more possible for things to get done.

Oh, yeah... When Tuesday comes, I will cast my vote for John McCain. I am one of those ubiquitous single issue voters that get derisive looks and snickers wherever we go. Those who look down on us believe it asinine to quarantine a single issue and to make it the deciding factor. Those of us who do this see it as a no-brainer. Especially when it's the issue of abortion. It's ok to call me silly, but only if you think it is silly to believe that life begins at (or sometime very soon after) conception. If you think life begins only after the child exits the womb and begins breathing (and there are many intelligent people who believe this,) then I think you are morally obligated to consider me a buffoon for picking this issue to be my trump card. But if have similar views about life as me, then please save your ire for something more worthy. I'm often baffled at those who say they believe abortion to be murder, but that it's stupid for that to be the only issue you use when deciding who to vote for. Really? If someone runs on the platform that we should not judge or prevent people who want to point a gun and shoot Craig Nash, please, for the love of God, make it the only issue you vote for.

Wow, I didn't plan on writing that much. But there you have it.

That's all I've got. But if your itching for more, you should read THIS ARTICLE about Sarah Palin. It's written by Eugene Robinson, a very smart guy that I rarely agree with, but who always has insightful things to say.