June 2008


Bookshelf&reviews29 Jun 2008 06:25 pm

Happy Sunday… i’ve been doing a little bit of work and such here as i try not to melt away in the heat, but i thought i’d take a quick time out to chat up the two books i finished reading yesterday… hopefully, i’ll have a chance to talk about a few other things tomorrow or the next day – we saw Wall-E and there’s plenty to talk about – but today it’s all about the books… off we go…

CHARACTER

to the tune of Instead of a Show – Jon Foreman

Character Makes a Difference, by Mike Huckabee

I had been looking forward to reading this book for a while now and once i started, it was hard to put it down… a large part of the book talks about how Gov. Huckabee became the governor of Arkansas and it appropriately begins in the midst of the action which is where character is revealed… it also talks a lot about the factors that effect and tend to squash the development of character in the world today, as well as Huckabee’s thoughts and policies regarding them…

I’d say that the book is a cross betwen a biography and a societal self-help book and it proved to be enjoyable and easy to read… reminded me several times of why i supported the Governor’s bid as a presidential candidate…

SPREADING THE WORD

to the tune of Word of Mouth – John Reuben
The Word of Mouth Manual: Volume II, by Dave Balter

This one is more of a nerdy book, but since it was a free PDF download and since i seem to have marketing and advertising in my blood somewhere, it piqued my curiosity and i feel somewhat rewarded for having read it… It did seem at times as though the author was simply trying to prove that Word of Mouth Marketing really is a viable form of marketing, and that he was trying a little too hard to establish himself as a pioneer in the field, but there were plenty of gems tucked away in the pages including a nice explanation of the shared community experience, the history of the Top 40 Charts, post purchase effects and the challenges of reaching a global audience…

I can’t say that i know exactly when or how this information will come in handy, but it was really presented effectively and in such a way that it didn’t feel like a textbook or an encyclopedia…

THE READING ROOM

to the tune of The Boys Are Back in Town – Thin Lizzie

Updated list for Mark Lee’s Summer Reading Club… four down so far… on to my Father’s Day present this year.. Boys Should Be Boys

It All Goes Back in the Box (Ortberg)
Deadly Viper Character Assassins (Foster & Wilhite) [audiobook]
The Word of Mouth Manual (Balter)
Character Makes a Difference (Huckabee)
Simplicity (Salomon) [about 70 pages left]
The Parent You Want to Be (Parrott) [about 150 pages left]
New Way to Be Human (Peacock) [about 200 pages left]
Boys Should Be Boys (Meeker) [about 220 pages left]
Wide Awake (McManus)
At the Crossroads (Peacock)
Deliver Us from Evelyn (Wells)
The Two Towers (Tolkien)
Quiet Strength (Dungy)
UnChristian (Kinnaman & Lyons)
Prince Caspian (Lewis)
Searching for God Knows What (Miller)

FULL LIST HERE

peace… love… bdg….

general29 Jun 2008 06:22 pm

Happy Sunday… i’ve been doing a little bit of work and such here as i try not to melt away in the heat, but i thought i’d take a quick time out to chat up the two books i finished reading yesterday… hopefully, i’ll have a chance to talk about a few other things tomorrow or the next day – we saw Wall-E and there’s plenty to talk about – but today it’s all about the books… off we go…

CHARACTER
to the tune of Instead of a Show – Jon Foreman

Character Makes a Difference, by Mike Huckabee

I had been looking forward to reading this book for a while now and once i started, it was hard to put it down… a large part of the book talks about how Gov. Huckabee became the governor of Arkansas and it appropriately begins in the midst of the action which is where character is revealed… it also talks a lot about the factors that effect and tend to squash the development of character in the world today, as well as Huckabee’s thoughts and policies regarding them…

I’d say that the book is a cross betwen a biography and a societal self-help book and it proved to be enjoyable and easy to read… reminded me several times of why i supported the Governor’s bid as a presidential candidate…

SPREADING THE WORD
to the tune of Word of Mouth – John Reuben The Word of Mouth Manual: Volume II, by Dave Balter

This one is more of a nerdy book, but since it was a free PDF download and since i seem to have marketing and advertising in my blood somewhere, it piqued my curiosity and i feel somewhat rewarded for having read it… It did seem at times as though the author was simply trying to prove that Word of Mouth Marketing really is a viable form of marketing, and that he was trying a little too hard to establish himself as a pioneer in the field, but there were plenty of gems tucked away in the pages including a nice explanation of the shared community experience, the history of the Top 40 Charts, post purchase effects and the challenges of reaching a global audience…

I can’t say that i know exactly when or how this information will come in handy, but it was really presented effectively and in such a way that it didn’t feel like a textbook or an encyclopedia…

THE READING ROOM
to the tune of The Boys Are Back in Town – Thin Lizzie

Updated list for Mark Lee’s Summer Reading Club… four down so far… on to my Father’s Day present this year.. Boys Should Be Boys

It All Goes Back in the Box (Ortberg)
Deadly Viper Character Assassins (Foster & Wilhite) [audiobook]
The Word of Mouth Manual (Balter)
Character Makes a Difference (Huckabee)
Simplicity (Salomon) [about 70 pages left]
The Parent You Want to Be (Parrott) [about 150 pages left]
New Way to Be Human (Peacock) [about 200 pages left]
Boys Should Be Boys (Meeker) [about 220 pages left]
Wide Awake (McManus)
At the Crossroads (Peacock)
Deliver Us from Evelyn (Wells)
The Two Towers (Tolkien)
Quiet Strength (Dungy)
UnChristian (Kinnaman & Lyons)
Prince Caspian (Lewis)
Searching for God Knows What (Miller)

FULL LIST HERE

peace… love… bdg….

Bookshelf&Free Music&general&pop culture&reviews&web26 Jun 2008 04:39 pm

Well, it’s been a weird week so far… i’m currently watching/burning to DVD the last game of the NBA Finals to free up what is apparently unneeded space on my DVR since there’s nothing on television anymore… i can’t wait for the return of Psych, Monk, The Closer and Burn Notice… maybe even more, but those four come to mind right now… until then, we’ll have to settle for whatever we can scrape up from good old netflix… dang, another three-pointer from Ray Allen…

I’ve also been reliving the days when i watched the NBA regularly by moving my old video tapes of the 1996 NBA Finals onto DVD as well… how great would it be to see Jordan, Pippen, Harper, Rodman and Longley square up against Garnett, Pierce, Allen, Rondo, and Perkins… oooooh… that’s the ticket… i can’t hardly BELIEVE that it was TWELVE YEARS AGO… crazy…

Of course, i’ve also been doing a lot of reading as well and my updates are below… it looks i’ll be able to go in for the kill and finish at least one of those books this week… possibly two, but at least one… and as they get checked off, you can expect brief little reviews in keeping with my agreement with the reading club thingamabob…

Okay, let’s move on shall we… this game is wrapped up and i’m ready to get this blog party started…

CHEATER CHEATER CHEATER

to the tune of Still Suspicion Hold You Tight – Black Rebel Motocycle Club

Okay, so i’ve mentioned before, probably several times that i enjoy playing the games online… particularly word games, but i’ve been known to delve off into puzzle games and other nonsensical flash-based games as well… and when it comes to word games, i like to win… and i do win a lot, but not always… i’m okay with losing and whenever it happens, i try my best to take it with grace…

And so it was that after handily defeating someone at a particular word game and then losing the rematch as they improved their score significantly it was a logical next step for me rematch again and dig in for the “rubber match”… Well, my scores remained pretty consistent, but their score, again, improved significantly on the back of a string of perfect rounds… chalking it up to good luck on their part and still wanting to win, i opted for another rematch…

However, as i watched them kick off the opening rounds with more perfect scores, my suspicions got the better of me… i researched the possibility of cheating in such a game as this… previously it hadn’t even occurred to me, but the suspicion holds me tight as they say and as it turns out, it is possible and there is no doubt in my mind that this individual was juicing up their scores… that last game – and it’s the last i’ll ever engage in with this particular person – unfolded with perfect round after perfect round… not only was the fun evacuated from the situation, but my concern for this individual grew as well… i mean, come on, how messed up and insecure do you have to be to cheat in a friendly game to make yourself look better?…. man, that’s insecurity at it’s apex… what a shame…

UNO DOS TRES CATORCE

to the tune of Like Spinning Plates – Radiohead

So i woke up Tuesday morning after an interrupted night of sleep and the room is spinning… it seems that i got up during a bad sleep cycle or something, but my equillibrium was all messed up… i tried my darndest to fight through it as if it were a passing feeling, but this vertigo had set in for the day… i ended up calling in sick and going back to bed… by the afternoon, i was able to be on the couch, eat lunch and do a little bit on the computer and such, but every time i turned my head, the images seemed to be proccessing in slow motion… i felt like i was in the matrix…

Little boy made my day by coming over, wrapping his arms around me and informing me that he had prayed for me three times and then, for good measure, prayed again right then and there… such a sweetie… clearly, i’m back on my feet again, but that was a wild day and i didn’t particularly like the way i felt…

SHORE ENOUGH

to the tune of Stronger – Seabird

New on the music front this week is a band called Seabird… i know what you’re probably thinking… you’re thinking that if it came out this week, i should be writing a regular full-on album review for it instead of putzing around here in this blog with just a brief mention, right?… well, it’s here or nowhere for this week… i’m backed up beyond belief and as hard as i try, it’s gonna be a while before i’m back on track… besides, you wouldn’t have the enjoyment of this handy little album player here to my left if this were an actual review…

Anyway, Seabird hit the scen a little bit ago with an EP that turned some heads and with the pedigree of being on Credential Recordings, you know it’s gotta at least be interesting music, right?… indeed it is chock full of pleasant melodies and artsy hooks… the sound may not be entirely unique anymore with the recent insurgence of indie rockers on the mainstream scene, but Seabird seems to hold their own on that front and i think that songs like “Rescue” and “Stronger” are certainly worth giving ear to…

TWITTERFIED!

to the tune of Lead Me On – Conway Twitty & Loretta Lynn

So, i finally caved and signed up to join Twitter… it’s nothing all that special, but see, what sold me is that there’s a growing number of artists using it and if you follow them, you can find out about upcoming projects and tour stuff… that’s what i was convinced of when i peeked in and saw the Bart Millard was recording for Hymned Vol 2…

other spectacular things i’ve learned since signing up? Vicky Beeching doesn’t own a vaccuum cleaner, but she borrows one from her neighbor… Cindy Morgan has fed a camel… Brock Gill likes chocolate…. Aaron Shust likes to make bad puns about his friend’s names… the guys from downhere like to run… someone from Dizmas doesn’t watch where they’re walking…

clearly this is an invaluable tool… though, i’ll admit, it is how i discovered Mark Lee’s book club…

RIVER ADVENTURE

to the tune of Veggie Doodle Dandy – Veggietales

So, despite Tuesday being all but a complete loss… i was able to give the boys a treat since they were pretty well-behaved… after they had gotten into their jammies and were ready for bed, i gathered them up, one on each side, and we planted ourselves on the couch to screen the upcoming Veggietales release, Tomato Sawyer and Huckleberry Larry’s Big River Rescue

My first thought was how daring it was to choose Huck Finn as the inspiration for a Veggietales film simply because i remember clearly that it’s been the subject of banishment, censorship and whatnot throughout the years, but of course, it is a classic and it’s a very memorable story of two pals and their adventures… and it translates very well to the capers of Bob and Larry… The sink scene was clever and really set the tone for the rest of the film…

It’s a hair-raising tale of friendship, sacrifice, and doing what you know is right… it’s also a fun tale of bluegrass, babies with signal flares and fried chicken… the boys enjoyed it, i liked it and it’s a winner… due out July 12th… check it out…

THE READING ROOM

to the tune of Word of Mouth – John Reuben

Updated list for Mark Lee’s Summer Reading Club… i keep adding more titles, but hopefully i’ll get to cross some off…

It All Goes Back in the Box (Ortberg)
Deadly Viper Character Assassins (Foster & Wilhite) [audiobook]
The Word of Mouth Manual (Balter) [about 15 pages left]
Character Makes a Difference (Huckabee) [about 50 pages left]
Simplicity (Salomon) [about 75 pages left]
The Parent You Want to Be (Parrott) [about 150 pages left]
New Way to Be Human (Peacock) [about 200 pages left]
Boys Should Be Boys (Meeker)
Wide Awake (McManus)
At the Crossroads (Peacock)
Deliver Us from Evelyn (Wells)
The Two Towers (Tolkien)
Quiet Strength (Dungy)
UnChristian (Kinnaman & Lyons)
Prince Caspian (Lewis)
Searching for God Knows What (Miller)

FULL LIST HERE

peace… love… bdg….

general26 Jun 2008 04:34 pm

Well, it’s been a weird week so far… i’m currently watching/burning to DVD the last game of the NBA Finals to free up what is apparently unneeded space on my DVR since there’s nothing on television anymore… i can’t wait for the return of Psych, Monk, The Closer and Burn Notice… maybe even more, but those four come to mind right now… until then, we’ll have to settle for whatever we can scrape up from good old netflix… dang, another three-pointer from Ray Allen…

I’ve also been reliving the days when i watched the NBA regularly by moving my old video tapes of the 1996 NBA Finals onto DVD as well… how great would it be to see Jordan, Pippen, Harper, Rodman and Longley square up against Garnett, Pierce, Allen, Rondo, and Perkins… oooooh… that’s the ticket… i can’t hardly BELIEVE that it was TWELVE YEARS AGO… crazy…

Of course, i’ve also been doing a lot of reading as well and my updates are below… it looks i’ll be able to go in for the kill and finish at least one of those books this week… possibly two, but at least one… and as they get checked off, you can expect brief little reviews in keeping with my agreement with the reading club thingamabob…

Okay, let’s move on shall we… this game is wrapped up and i’m ready to get this blog party started…

CHEATER CHEATER CHEATER
to the tune of Still Suspicion Hold You Tight – Black Rebel Motocycle Club

Okay, so i’ve mentioned before, probably several times that i enjoy playing the games online… particularly word games, but i’ve been known to delve off into puzzle games and other nonsensical flash-based games as well… and when it comes to word games, i like to win… and i do win a lot, but not always… i’m okay with losing and whenever it happens, i try my best to take it with grace…

And so it was that after handily defeating someone at a particular word game and then losing the rematch as they improved their score significantly it was a logical next step for me rematch again and dig in for the “rubber match”… Well, my scores remained pretty consistent, but their score, again, improved significantly on the back of a string of perfect rounds… chalking it up to good luck on their part and still wanting to win, i opted for another rematch…

However, as i watched them kick off the opening rounds with more perfect scores, my suspicions got the better of me… i researched the possibility of cheating in such a game as this… previously it hadn’t even occurred to me, but the suspicion holds me tight as they say and as it turns out, it is possible and there is no doubt in my mind that this individual was juicing up their scores… that last game – and it’s the last i’ll ever engage in with this particular person – unfolded with perfect round after perfect round… not only was the fun evacuated from the situation, but my concern for this individual grew as well… i mean, come on, how messed up and insecure do you have to be to cheat in a friendly game to make yourself look better?…. man, that’s insecurity at it’s apex… what a shame…

UNO DOS TRES CATORCE
to the tune of Like Spinning Plates – Radiohead

So i woke up Tuesday morning after an interrupted night of sleep and the room is spinning… it seems that i got up during a bad sleep cycle or something, but my equillibrium was all messed up… i tried my darndest to fight through it as if it were a passing feeling, but this vertigo had set in for the day… i ended up calling in sick and going back to bed… by the afternoon, i was able to be on the couch, eat lunch and do a little bit on the computer and such, but every time i turned my head, the images seemed to be proccessing in slow motion… i felt like i was in the matrix…

Little boy made my day by coming over, wrapping his arms around me and informing me that he had prayed for me three times and then, for good measure, prayed again right then and there… such a sweetie… clearly, i’m back on my feet again, but that was a wild day and i didn’t particularly like the way i felt…

SHORE ENOUGH
to the tune of Stronger – Seabird

New on the music front this week is a band called Seabird… i know what you’re probably thinking… you’re thinking that if it came out this week, i should be writing a regular full-on album review for it instead of putzing around here in this blog with just a brief mention, right?… well, it’s here or nowhere for this week… i’m backed up beyond belief and as hard as i try, it’s gonna be a while before i’m back on track…

Anyway, Seabird hit the scen a little bit ago with an EP that turned some heads and with the pedigree of being on Credential Recordings, you know it’s gotta at least be interesting music, right?… indeed it is chock full of pleasant melodies and artsy hooks… the sound may not be entirely unique anymore with the recent insurgence of indie rockers on the mainstream scene, but Seabird seems to hold their own on that front and i think that songs like “Rescue” and “Stronger” are certainly worth giving ear

TWITTERFIED!
to the tune of Lead Me On – Conway Twitty & Loretta Lynn

So, i finally caved and signed up to join Twitter… it’s nothing all that special, but see, what sold me is that there’s a growing number of artists using it and if you follow them, you can find out about upcoming projects and tour stuff… that’s what i was convinced of when i peeked in and saw the Bart Millard was recording for Hymned Vol 2…

other spectacular things i’ve learned since signing up? Vicky Beeching doesn’t own a vaccuum cleaner, but she borrows one from her neighbor… Cindy Morgan has fed a camel… Brock Gill likes chocolate…. Aaron Shust likes to make bad puns about his friend’s names… the guys from downhere like to run… someone from Dizmas doesn’t watch where they’re walking…

clearly this is an invaluable tool… though, i’ll admit, it is how i discovered Mark Lee’s book club…

RIVER ADVENTURE
to the tune of Veggie Doodle Dandy – Veggietales

So, despite Tuesday being all but a complete loss… i was able to give the boys a treat since they were pretty well-behaved… after they had gotten into their jammies and were ready for bed, i gathered them up, one on each side, and we planted ourselves on the couch to screen the upcoming Veggietales release, Tomato Sawyer and Huckleberry Larry’s Big River Rescue

My first thought was how daring it was to choose Huck Finn as the inspiration for a Veggietales film simply because i remember clearly that it’s been the subject of banishment, censorship and whatnot throughout the years, but of course, it is a classic and it’s a very memorable story of two pals and their adventures… and it translates very well to the capers of Bob and Larry… The sink scene was clever and really set the tone for the rest of the film…

It’s a hair-raising tale of friendship, sacrifice, and doing what you know is right… it’s also a fun tale of bluegrass, babies with signal flares and fried chicken… the boys enjoyed it, i liked it and it’s a winner… due out July 12th… check it out…

THE READING ROOM
to the tune of Word of Mouth – John Reuben

Updated list for Mark Lee’s Summer Reading Club… i keep adding more titles, but hopefully i’ll get to cross some off…

It All Goes Back in the Box (Ortberg)
Deadly Viper Character Assassins (Foster & Wilhite) [audiobook]
The Word of Mouth Manual (Balter) [about 15 pages left]
Character Makes a Difference (Huckabee) [about 50 pages left]
Simplicity (Salomon) [about 75 pages left]
The Parent You Want to Be (Parrott) [about 150 pages left]
New Way to Be Human (Peacock) [about 200 pages left]
Boys Should Be Boys (Meeker)
Wide Awake (McManus)
At the Crossroads (Peacock)
Deliver Us from Evelyn (Wells)
The Two Towers (Tolkien)
Quiet Strength (Dungy)
UnChristian (Kinnaman & Lyons)
Prince Caspian (Lewis)
Searching for God Knows What (Miller)

FULL LIST HERE

peace… love… bdg….

Bookshelf&general&pop culture&reviews20 Jun 2008 11:58 pm

FRIDAY!… word up… it’s the weekend… and hey, food fight!… more on that later… i promised to try and get a few somethings written up today and here i am… trying…

Anyway… i’m pretty happy that it’s the weekend and i don’t have much planned… a possible barbeque to attend… a few chores around the house perhaps… but mostly lounging, wrestling with the littles, kicking back, writing?, trying to stay cool in the heat… and of course they will be reading… (my updated reading list is below)… for today, before i start the relaxation, here’s a handful (five fingers, five topics) of items for the old blog… on we go with the program…

01. VIVA LA SOMETHING OR OTHER

to the tune of Lost! – Coldplay

Coldplay released their new album, Viva La Vida and i’ve been listening to it… mostly in the background of my normail work noises (keyboard clicking, chairs scraping, etc), but i’ve managed to get a pretty good feel for the album… and i like it… it’s a clear step forward for the group and i think they’ve broken out of the mold that they cast themselves in on the last few albums… “Lost!” particularly stands out to me as one of the defining tracks for the album… the lyrics are pretty intriguing on that song, too… my only complaing is that it feels like the album blows by even though it actually clocks (get it?) in at about 45 minutes…

02. REAL CHARACTER DEVELOPMENT

to the tune of Hero – Hans Zimmer & John Powell (Kung Fu Panda)

I guess this falls into the catagory of books, but it’s probably considered cheating for a book club… anyway, Mike Foster and Jud Wilhite have written a book and started a campaign for character… They called the book Deadly Viper Character Assassins and you can get a free audiobook version of it on their site, DeadlyViper.org and while you’re there, check out the blog and the videos to see more of what it’s all about…

personally, i opted for the audiobook since it was free and immediate, but i plan to pick up a hardcopy of the book at some point to, because it’s definitely one to keep handy… besides the great content of the book itself, there are some interview tie-ins that add to the conversation and enhance the message… i’ve decided that i’m going to try to get an interview set up with one or both of these guys to further explore this topic a bit… i’ll keep you posted…

03. TOO COOL FOR YOU

to the tune of Play My Music – Jonas Brothers (Camp Rock)

so… the food fight… yeah… i’m watching Camp Rock which is the new Disney movie starring the Jonas Brothers and… hey, shut up… nothing wrong with laying up once in a while… we don’t all have to tin-cup every hole… anyway, the movie runs about an hour and a half after commercials are fast forwarded and i’d guess that the script writing process took about half that time… okay… it’s not the best script… it’s not the best plot… it’s predictable and makes you groan over and over… but it’s the Jonas Brothers and i have nothing but good things to say about them… they’re good people and they always put a smile on my face…

i still think back fondly to the first GMA Week i went down to Nashville for… i was a little nervous and such and wondering why i had agreed to interview the then 13, 16, and 18 year old brothers… turns out that they were the most enjoyable interview of my time down there that year… very down to earth and i’d interview them again in a heart beat… (seriously, imagine the traffic i’d generate with a Jonas Brothers interview… guys, hook me up)… anyway…

04. CODE BEE

to the tune of Viva Los Lakers – Grand Incredible

So, i was totally wrong about the NBA Finals this year… if you remember (and if you don’t it’s a few entries down), i predicted that the Laskers would win in seven… well, they lost in six and they seemed pretty fortunate to have made it that far… in my defense, when i made my prediction, it was predicated on the assumption that Kobe Bryant was the game’s best player… clearly he is not… and clearly, all these references to him being “as good as Jordan in his prime” are absolutely ridiculous…

Does it seem like i’m being too harsh?… sorry, but the best player in the game does not disappear in the NBA Finals… Kobe was a waste throughout the finals and, even though the Celtics defense deserves a lot of credit, MJ would’ve figured out a way to win because he actually was the best in the game when he was playing… perhaps you can say Kobe is the next Clyde Drexler… anyway…

05. HOPE DEALER

to the tune of Bob the Builder – The International TV Orchestra

Okay, so here’s the thing… i forgot to mention that Barack Obama came within three miles of my house a while ago… He had recently locked up the nomination and was stumping at a first come first serve free for all venue that made me nervous about traffic… it crossed my mind that it might be neat to see this man up there on stage repeating the same speeches he’s been repeating for eleven months or so… mostly, i realized that it would be empty words from a cardboard cutout of a man, just like pretty much everything else related to politics…

I know that he’s running as the candidate of change and the candidate for hope and that it’s resonating with lots of people, but i’m not buying it… i think the most interesting thing about his campaign is how well it’s exposing how bad our society has gotten… we’re so discontented with everything that we have, we so don’t appreciate the blessings that have been bestowed upon us, that we’ll (as a nation) jump at the very promise of something better… all you have to do is put it in a pretty package and tell us that it’s better and we’ll start drooling at it like it’s the new iPhone or the latest fashion accessory…

The problem is that the President of the United States is NOT a fashion accessory… nor is he (or she) the messiah… it’s sad to see how many people buy into the same old rhetoric time and time again… it hurts more everytime you are failed… it deadens your ability to truly trust… it makes us more cynical, more skeptical, and more scarred… we are worse off for it… i have more on this, but you’ll have to wait until i have time to finish up the next Left to Write…

THE READING ROOM

to the tune of Word of Mouth – John Reuben

Updated list for Mark Lee’s Summer Reading Club… i keep adding more titles, but hopefully i’ll get to cross some off…

It All Goes Back in the Box (Ortberg)
Simplicity (Salomon) [about 110 pages left]
Character Makes a Difference (Huckabee) [about 175 pages left]
Searching for God Knows What (Miller)
New Way to Be Human (Peacock) [about 200 pages left]
At the Crossroads (Peacock)
Deliver Us from Evelyn (Wells)
The Two Towers (Tolkien)
Quiet Strength (Dungy)
UnChristian (Kinnaman & Lyons)
Prince Caspian (Lewis)
The Word of Mouth Manual (Balter) [about 90 pages left]

FULL LIST HERE

peace… love… bdg….

general20 Jun 2008 11:55 pm

FRIDAY!… word up… it’s the weekend… and hey, food fight!… more on that later… i promised to try and get a few somethings written up today and here i am… trying…

Anyway… i’m pretty happy that it’s the weekend and i don’t have much planned… a possible barbeque to attend… a few chores around the house perhaps… but mostly lounging, wrestling with the littles, kicking back, writing?, trying to stay cool in the heat… and of course they will be reading… (my updated reading list is below)… for today, before i start the relaxation, here’s a handful (five fingers, five topics) of items for the old blog… on we go with the program…

01. VIVA LA SOMETHING OR OTHER
to the tune of Lost! – Coldplay

Coldplay released their new album, Viva La Vida and i’ve been listening to it… mostly in the background of my normail work noises (keyboard clicking, chairs scraping, etc), but i’ve managed to get a pretty good feel for the album… and i like it… it’s a clear step forward for the group and i think they’ve broken out of the mold that they cast themselves in on the last few albums… “Lost!” particularly stands out to me as one of the defining tracks for the album… the lyrics are pretty intriguing on that song, too… my only complaing is that it feels like the album blows by even though it actually clocks (get it?) in at about 45 minutes…

02. REAL CHARACTER DEVELOPMENT
to the tune of Hero – Hans Zimmer & John Powell (Kung Fu Panda)

I guess this falls into the catagory of books, but it’s probably considered cheating for a book club… anyway, Mike Foster and Jud Wilhite have written a book and started a campaign for character… They called the book Deadly Viper Character Assassins and you can get a free audiobook version of it on their site, DeadlyViper.org and while you’re there, check out the blog and the videos to see more of what it’s all about…

personally, i opted for the audiobook since it was free and immediate, but i plan to pick up a hardcopy of the book at some point to, because it’s definitely one to keep handy… besides the great content of the book itself, there are some interview tie-ins that add to the conversation and enhance the message… i’ve decided that i’m going to try to get an interview set up with one or both of these guys to further explore this topic a bit… i’ll keep you posted…

03. TOO COOL FOR YOU
to the tune of Play My Music – Jonas Brothers (Camp Rock)

so… the food fight… yeah… i’m watching Camp Rock which is the new Disney movie starring the Jonas Brothers and… hey, shut up… nothing wrong with laying up once in a while… we don’t all have to tin-cup every hole… anyway, the movie runs about an hour and a half after commercials are fast forwarded and i’d guess that the script writing process took about half that time… okay… it’s not the best script… it’s not the best plot… it’s predictable and makes you groan over and over… but it’s the Jonas Brothers and i have nothing but good things to say about them… they’re good people and they always put a smile on my face…

i still think back fondly to the first GMA Week i went down to Nashville for… i was a little nervous and such and wondering why i had agreed to interview the then 13, 16, and 18 year old brothers… turns out that they were the most enjoyable interview of my time down there that year… very down to earth and i’d interview them again in a heart beat… (seriously, imagine the traffic i’d generate with a Jonas Brothers interview… guys, hook me up)… anyway…

04. CODE BEE
to the tune of Viva Los Lakers – Grand Incredible

So, i was totally wrong about the NBA Finals this year… if you remember (and if you don’t it’s a few entries down), i predicted that the Laskers would win in seven… well, they lost in six and they seemed pretty fortunate to have made it that far… in my defense, when i made my prediction, it was predicated on the assumption that Kobe Bryant was the game’s best player… clearly he is not… and clearly, all these references to him being “as good as Jordan in his prime” are absolutely ridiculous…

Does it seem like i’m being too harsh?… sorry, but the best player in the game does not disappear in the NBA Finals… Kobe was a waste throughout the finals and, even though the Celtics defense deserves a lot of credit, MJ would’ve figured out a way to win because he actually was the best in the game when he was playing… perhaps you can say Kobe is the next Clyde Drexler… anyway…

05. HOPE DEALER
to the tune of Bob the Builder – The International TV Orchestra

Okay, so here’s the thing… i forgot to mention that Barack Obama came within three miles of my house a while ago… He had recently locked up the nomination and was stumping at a first come first serve free for all venue that made me nervous about traffic… it crossed my mind that it might be neat to see this man up there on stage repeating the same speeches he’s been repeating for eleven months or so… mostly, i realized that it would be empty words from a cardboard cutout of a man, just like pretty much everything else related to politics…

I know that he’s running as the candidate of change and the candidate for hope and that it’s resonating with lots of people, but i’m not buying it… i think the most interesting thing about his campaign is how well it’s exposing how bad our society has gotten… we’re so discontented with everything that we have, we so don’t appreciate the blessings that have been bestowed upon us, that we’ll (as a nation) jump at the very promise of something better… all you have to do is put it in a pretty package and tell us that it’s better and we’ll start drooling at it like it’s the new iPhone or the latest fashion accessory…

The problem is that the President of the United States is NOT a fashion accessory… nor is he (or she) the messiah… it’s sad to see how many people buy into the same old rhetoric time and time again… it hurts more everytime you are failed… it deadens your ability to truly trust… it makes us more cynical, more skeptical, and more scarred… we are worse off for it… i have more on this, but you’ll have to wait until i have time to finish up the next Left to Write…

THE READING ROOM
to the tune of Word of Mouth – John Reuben

Updated list for Mark Lee’s Summer Reading Club… i keep adding more titles, but hopefully i’ll get to cross some off…

It All Goes Back in the Box (Ortberg)
Simplicity (Salomon) [about 110 pages left]
Character Makes a Difference (Huckabee) [about 175 pages left]
Searching for God Knows What (Miller)
New Way to Be Human (Peacock) [about 200 pages left]
At the Crossroads (Peacock)
Deliver Us from Evelyn (Wells)
The Two Towers (Tolkien)
Quiet Strength (Dungy)
UnChristian (Kinnaman & Lyons)
Prince Caspian (Lewis)
The Word of Mouth Manual (Balter) [about 90 pages left]

FULL LIST HERE

peace… love… bdg….

Bookshelf&features&front page&general19 Jun 2008 10:55 pm

okay, so i was wrong… the Celtics really showed the Lakers who was boss… more about that a little later… it’s been a busy week and a half or so… i’d like to say that i was on vacation like some people, but that’s not the case… we did call that thing last week a retreat, but it wasn’t exactly restful… i ended up sleeping in spurts of maybe 30-45 minutes at a time and getting worn out during the day…

Anyway, i’ve been back since Wednesday night… last Wednesday night, working a lot, went to the lake and got some primo sunburn… did church… headed back to work and yadda yadda yadda… it’s already late on Thursday evening and i don’t have much to show for the week… so here’s a few somethings and we’ll see if i can’t do better tomorrow…

IN OTHER WORDS

to the tune of You Make It Look So Easy – Stavesacre

Simplicity by Mark Salomon

have you ever started reading a book and wondered why you hadn’t read it before?… as i’m reading through these pages, i can’t help but think of all the time it spent on that silly bookshelf over in the corner waiting to be read… and i think to myself, man, this could’ve been the second or third time i’ve read this instead of just now being my first time through… i’m resonating with a lot of the questions raised, nodding along to the lessons learned and anticipating the next chapter… i’m currently about halfway through and there are no signs of me slowing down…

also worth noting, this is apparently the LAST WEEK that it will be available at the Relevant Book Store for FOUR DOLLARS… i’ll probably end up changing the link the next time i update depending on where it ends up being cheapest…

THE READING ROOM

to the tune of If You Could Read My Mind – Johnny Cash

so i think i need to keep track of the books that i’m reading for the sake of Mark Lee’s Summer Reading Club… i have a feeling i’m going to get smoked in this thing, but who knows… anyway, here’s a list of what i’m currently reading and what i’ll hopefully be reading soon…

It All Goes Back in the Box (Ortberg)
Simplicity (Salomon) [about 120 pages left]
Character Makes a Difference (Huckabee) [about 200 pages left]
Searching for God Knows What (Miller)
New Way to Be Human (Peacock) [about 200 pages left]
At the Crossroads (Peacock)
Deliver Us from Evelyn (Wells)
The Two Towers (Tolkien)
Quiet Strength (Dungy)
UnChristian (Kinnaman & Lyons)
Prince Caspian (Lewis)
The Word of Mouth Manual (Balter) [about 110 pages left]

and the list goes on, but if we’re rational and reasonable, i think we all realize that i’ll be fortunate to finish two or three of these in the next three months… FULL LIST HERE

AND WITH THAT…

it’s time to go… you can head over to the main page and check out the Boomin’ Beyond Measure concert review… thanks for peeping that…

peace… love… bdg…

general19 Jun 2008 10:52 pm

okay, so i was wrong… the Celtics really showed the Lakers who was boss… more about that a little later… it’s been a busy week and a half or so… i’d like to say that i was on vacation like some people, but that’s not the case… we did call that thing last week a retreat, but it wasn’t exactly restful… i ended up sleeping in spurts of maybe 30-45 minutes at a time and getting worn out during the day…

Anyway, i’ve been back since Wednesday night… last Wednesday night, working a lot, went to the lake and got some primo sunburn… did church… headed back to work and yadda yadda yadda… it’s already late on Thursday evening and i don’t have much to show for the week… so here’s a few somethings and we’ll see if i can’t do better tomorrow…

IN OTHER WORDS
to the tune of You Make It Look So Easy – Stavesacre

Simplicity by Mark Salomon

have you ever started reading a book and wondered why you hadn’t read it before?… as i’m reading through these pages, i can’t help but think of all the time it spent on that silly bookshelf over in the corner waiting to be read… and i think to myself, man, this could’ve been the second or third time i’ve read this instead of just now being my first time through… i’m resonating with a lot of the questions raised, nodding along to the lessons learned and anticipating the next chapter… i’m currently about halfway through and there are no signs of me slowing down…

also worth noting, this is apparently the LAST WEEK that it will be available at the Relevant Book Store for FOUR DOLLARS… i’ll probably end up changing the link the next time i update depending on where it ends up being cheapest…

THE READING ROOM
to the tune of If You Could Read My Mind – Johnny Cash

so i think i need to keep track of the books that i’m reading for the sake of Mark Lee’s Summer Reading Club… i have a feeling i’m going to get smoked in this thing, but who knows… anyway, here’s a list of what i’m currently reading and what i’ll hopefully be reading soon…

It All Goes Back in the Box (Ortberg)
Simplicity (Salomon) [about 120 pages left]
Character Makes a Difference (Huckabee) [about 200 pages left]
Searching for God Knows What (Miller)
New Way to Be Human (Peacock) [about 200 pages left]
At the Crossroads (Peacock)
Deliver Us from Evelyn (Wells)
The Two Towers (Tolkien)
Quiet Strength (Dungy)
UnChristian (Kinnaman & Lyons)
Prince Caspian (Lewis)
The Word of Mouth Manual (Balter) [about 110 pages left]

and the list goes on, but if we’re rational and reasonable, i think we all realize that i’ll be fortunate to finish two or three of these in the next three months… FULL LIST HERE

AND WITH THAT…

it’s time to go… you can head over to the main page and check out the Boomin’ Beyond Measure concert review… thanks for peeping that…

peace… love… bdg…

Bookshelf&front page&general&inTRuviews&It All Goes Back in the Box&pop culture&reviews&videos08 Jun 2008 10:11 pm

Well, it’s Sunday and i’ve managed to complete another wonderful training / instructional manual… i’m turning into quite the technical writer while still maintaining the normal duties of my actual job title… i’m still pretty tired and all, but i’m glad to have those both behind me for now… i’m sure there’s more coming and all, but right now there’s something of a lull… a break in the action… a chance to catch my breath… and, since it looks like i’ll be completely offline for the next three days while we frolic and play at the all-staff retreat (really sit around and listen to an endless string of presentations only to retire to a shared room assignment with none of the comforts of home), i’m imagining that my day job will be pretty slow at the beginning of the week…

So what on earth will i do with myself if i have no access to the grand old internet and no television and no privacy?… well, hopefully, i’ll manage to get a number of interviews transcribed, get a number of other things written, get a little bit of reading done and, hey, maybe even sleep… i’m actually trying not to think about it too much, since it begins early tomorrow with a four-hour car ride with three coworkers…

Anyway, it’s Sunday and, since i’ll be out-of-pocket the next few days, i figured that i should get a few things written down to have something to show for myself in my absence… playing behind me at the moment is an episode of Mrs. Columbo which is a bonus feature of the Complete Third Season of Columbo… pretty fun… i love me some Columbo… but now let’s move on…

ROCK WHAT YA GOT

to the tune of Hey Hey – Superchic[k]

So, we’ll start with some music… i got the new Superchic[k] album the other day and have listened to it a few times… my boys actually enjoy it quite a bit too… they’ve even informed me that the song “Hey Hey” sounds very much like the modern version of Cruella De Vil from the 101 Dalmations DVD… could be… anyway, it’s a pretty fun album and everything you’d expect from the group, but part of me thinks it could’ve been better…

THE BIGGER PICTURE

to the tune of Ignition (live) – TobyMac

so, i wrote this heading in the other day and had no idea what i was supposed to write about… but now i remember… TobyMac is taking a cue from U2 and hitting the big screen… apparently, tomorrow, the Alive and Transported video will be playing limited engagements in theaters… around here, there’s one showing at 7:30 PM… but check your local listings if you’re into that sort of thing… it’s probably a cool idea… my boys enjoy the DVD a lot and it’s better for their ears than a live show…

AND LOVING IT…

to the tune of Get Smart – Bob Crane & His Drums And Orchestra

i for one am really excited about the upcoming movie version of Get Smart… i think that Steve Carell is a great choice for Agent 86 and i always enjoy a good dose of The Rock… not so sure about Anne Hatheway or the lack of the 70s era, but i think it’s going to be great… until it’s ready though, i’m going to sit back and enjoy one of my latest silly acquisitions… the entire original series on DVD, complete with a collector’s box that opens in three different directions like the command center of Control…

ONLY ONE

to the tune of Sirius – Alan Parsons Project

So, the NBA Finals are on and man, can they draw games out or what?…. i finally ended up watching game one between the Lakers and the Celtics the other night and i’m pretty tired of hearing about what a storied rivalry it is… great, i get it… i saw some of it growing up… and none of those guys are playing in this series… now, THAT might be something interesting… anyway, it looks to be a good series and i say that as someone who rarely watches the NBA anymore because it’s just, i don’t know, off… as i see it, it had it’s hey day and that’s now in the past… doesn’t seem to be reviving itself anytime soon… i’ll watch these games – all on a DVR delay – and i’ll probably enjoy it… and i’m picking the Lakers in seven… (tonight they’ll win by about 17)…

IT’S POTTY TIME…

Mute Math is working on a new album (cheers all around)… and they seem to be recording a lot of it in the bathroom… i guess we all potty break the same… (har-har)… anyway check out this preview video…

IN OTHER WORDS
to the tune of The End – Derek Webb

When the Game Is Over, It All Goes Back in the Box by John Ortberg… Well, i finally finished this book… actually i finished it maybe a week and a half ago, but i’m finally wrapping up this coverage… the final section of the book tells us how to win… it reminds us that we need to focus on collecting the right types of trophies and then, in the last chapter it tells a story about a painting… the painting is called “Check Mate” and the story tells of a chess expert perturbed by the painting’s title because, “the King has one more move”… (of course, there’s a typo in the chapter title as it’s printed on the page headers – “the kind has one more move”)…

this really stood out to me because i was playing a game of chess at work and i was informed with a great deal of pride and boasting that i was in check mate… now, i hadn’t paid much attention to the game up to that point because there’s been a lot of things going on at work and chess wasn’t exactly the most important thing to worry about much less strategize for… but, something about the snideness of this guy’s voice… “check mate, but you must’ve known that was coming”… all of a sudden, something within me wanted to win… i had been resolved to lose and chalk it up to distraction… but now… oh, i wanted to win… suddenly the game mattered… and fortunately, when i went to check out the board, i discovered that he was wrong… there was another move… in fact, five moves later, i had taken his rook, bishop, knight and queen… and two moves after that, he conceded to defeat… check mate… that was music to my ears…

it doesn’t really relate to the book, but it made me happy… anyway, i thought the book ended rather abruptly, but it’s not like the ending was a surprise or anything… it was a good book overall…

NEXT UP

to the tune of You Make It Look So Easy – Stavesacre

Simplicity by Mark Salomon

so, i’ve already begun the next book and i’m not sure how much opportunity i’ll have to blog about it, because methinks that i’ll be done with it rather quickly… i’m about 50 pages in already and i’m totally hooked… and what, with my downtime coming up this week, i may just plow through the whole thing… also worth noting, it’s available at the Relevant Book Store for FOUR DOLLARS… normally, i’d be using an affiliate link to try and poach a few pennies from anyone kind enough to buy it, but it’s such a good deal and Relevant is such a good place to support that it’s the link i chose…

SUMMER READIN’

to the tune of Summer Nights – John Travolta and Olivia Newton-John

I’m also using those two books as my entry into Mark Lee’s Summer Reading Club… it’s supposed to be really laid back and i don’t have much of a clue what the rules are, but since i stumbled upon it and i have a hard time saying no… i’m IN…

AND WITH THAT…

it’s time to go… but wait… there’s more… a quick glance at the front page will reveal a splendid little interview with Paul Alan… thanks for peeping that…

peace… love… bdg…

general08 Jun 2008 10:08 pm

Well, it’s Sunday and i’ve managed to complete another wonderful training / instructional manual… i’m turning into quite the technical writer while still maintaining the normal duties of my actual job title… i’m still pretty tired and all, but i’m glad to have those both behind me for now… i’m sure there’s more coming and all, but right now there’s something of a lull… a break in the action… a chance to catch my breath… and, since it looks like i’ll be completely offline for the next three days while we frolic and play at the all-staff retreat (really sit around and listen to an endless string of presentations only to retire to a shared room assignment with none of the comforts of home), i’m imagining that my day job will be pretty slow at the beginning of the week…

So what on earth will i do with myself if i have no access to the grand old internet and no television and no privacy?… well, hopefully, i’ll manage to get a number of interviews transcribed, get a number of other things written, get a little bit of reading done and, hey, maybe even sleep… i’m actually trying not to think about it too much, since it begins early tomorrow with a four-hour car ride with three coworkers…

Anyway, it’s Sunday and, since i’ll be out-of-pocket the next few days, i figured that i should get a few things written down to have something to show for myself in my absence… playing behind me at the moment is an episode of Mrs. Columbo which is a bonus feature of the Complete Third Season of Columbo… pretty fun… i love me some Columbo… but now let’s move on…

ROCK WHAT YA GOT
to the tune of Hey Hey – Superchic[k]

So, we’ll start with some music… i got the new Superchic[k] album the other day and have listened to it a few times… my boys actually enjoy it quite a bit too… they’ve even informed me that the song “Hey Hey” sounds very much like the modern version of Cruella De Vil from the 101 Dalmations DVD… could be… anyway, it’s a pretty fun album and everything you’d expect from the group, but part of me thinks it could’ve been better…

THE BIGGER PICTURE
to the tune of Ignition (live) – TobyMac

so, i wrote this heading in the other day and had no idea what i was supposed to write about… but now i remember… TobyMac is taking a cue from U2 and hitting the big screen… apparently, tomorrow, the Alive and Transported video will be playing limited engagements in theaters… around here, there’s one showing at 7:30 PM… but check your local listings if you’re into that sort of thing… it’s probably a cool idea… my boys enjoy the DVD a lot and it’s better for their ears than a live show…

AND LOVING IT…
to the tune of Get Smart – Bob Crane & His Drums And Orchestra

i for one am really excited about the upcoming movie version of Get Smart… i think that Steve Carell is a great choice for Agent 86 and i always enjoy a good dose of The Rock… not so sure about Anne Hatheway or the lack of the 70s era, but i think it’s going to be great… until it’s ready though, i’m going to sit back and enjoy one of my latest silly acquisitions… the entire original series on DVD, complete with a collector’s box that opens in three different directions like the command center of Control…

ONLY ONE
to the tune of Sirius – Alan Parsons Project

So, the NBA Finals are on and man, can they draw games out or what?…. i finally ended up watching game one between the Lakers and the Celtics the other night and i’m pretty tired of hearing about what a storied rivalry it is… great, i get it… i saw some of it growing up… and none of those guys are playing in this series… now, THAT might be something interesting… anyway, it looks to be a good series and i say that as someone who rarely watches the NBA anymore because it’s just, i don’t know, off… as i see it, it had it’s hey day and that’s now in the past… doesn’t seem to be reviving itself anytime soon… i’ll watch these games – all on a DVR delay – and i’ll probably enjoy it… and i’m picking the Lakers in seven… (tonight they’ll win by about 17)…

IT’S POTTY TIME…

Mute Math is working on a new album (cheers all around)… and they seem to be recording a lot of it in the bathroom… i guess we all potty break the same… (har-har)… anyway check out this preview video…

IN OTHER WORDS
to the tune of The End – Derek Webb

When the Game Is Over, It All Goes Back in the Box by John Ortberg… Well, i finally finished this book… actually i finished it maybe a week and a half ago, but i’m finally wrapping up this coverage… the final section of the book tells us how to win… it reminds us that we need to focus on collecting the right types of trophies and then, in the last chapter it tells a story about a painting… the painting is called “Check Mate” and the story tells of a chess expert perturbed by the painting’s title because, “the King has one more move”… (of course, there’s a typo in the chapter title as it’s printed on the page headers – “the kind has one more move”)…

this really stood out to me because i was playing a game of chess at work and i was informed with a great deal of pride and boasting that i was in check mate… now, i hadn’t paid much attention to the game up to that point because there’s been a lot of things going on at work and chess wasn’t exactly the most important thing to worry about much less strategize for… but, something about the snideness of this guy’s voice… “check mate, but you must’ve known that was coming”… all of a sudden, something within me wanted to win… i had been resolved to lose and chalk it up to distraction… but now… oh, i wanted to win… suddenly the game mattered… and fortunately, when i went to check out the board, i discovered that he was wrong… there was another move… in fact, five moves later, i had taken his rook, bishop, knight and queen… and two moves after that, he conceded to defeat… check mate… that was music to my ears…

it doesn’t really relate to the book, but it made me happy… anyway, i thought the book ended rather abruptly, but it’s not like the ending was a surprise or anything… it was a good book overall…

NEXT UP
to the tune of You Make It Look So Easy – Stavesacre

Simplicity by Mark Salomon

so, i’ve already begun the next book and i’m not sure how much opportunity i’ll have to blog about it, because methinks that i’ll be done with it rather quickly… i’m about 50 pages in already and i’m totally hooked… and what, with my downtime coming up this week, i may just plow through the whole thing… also worth noting, it’s available at the Relevant Book Store for FOUR DOLLARS… normally, i’d be using an affiliate link to try and poach a few pennies from anyone kind enough to buy it, but it’s such a good deal and Relevant is such a good place to support that it’s the link i chose…

SUMMER READIN’
to the tune of Summer Nights – John Travolta and Olivia Newton-John

I’m also using those two books as my entry into Mark Lee’s Summer Reading Club… it’s supposed to be really laid back and i don’t have much of a clue what the rules are, but since i stumbled upon it and i have a hard time saying no… i’m IN…

AND WITH THAT…

it’s time to go… but wait… there’s more… a quick glance at the front page will reveal a splendid little interview with Paul Alan… thanks for peeping that…

peace… love… bdg…

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