Crash Boom Bang

It is every nerds nightmare. No, not the one about Lucas releasing another set of Star Wars movies with Jar Jar as the main character. The one I am talking about is the moment that your computer crashes while you helplessly watch. This unfortunate moment happened to me around 1:40 Saturday morning. I was sending out some emails, chatting with a friend, and watching a little online television, when the dang thing froze up. It then had the courage to tell me that it was going to begin dumping the physical memory. What?? I quickly unplugged my external drive which houses my music collection, and prepared for a quick reboot. Boy was I wrong. Upon trying to restart it, I heard horrible sounds. Then I began seeing messages like, "disk error," "disk failure eminent," and "say goodbye to all your data sucker." I was expecting the voice of HAL to resonate from the speakers just to mock me.

I now can only wait to see if the fine repair people can salvage anything. If not, I will lose a lot of photos, the latest version of my website, a good amount of writings, and who knows what else. I really need to learn to back stuff up.

And the kicker is now I am using my eight year old laptop to get stuff done. The one I kept mostly because I couldn't get much for it on eBay. Now it sits, probably mocking the newer model. It knows that even though it only has a tenth of the storage, it is working as more than a paperweight right now.

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Got That Friday Night Fever

Sure they got money
But they lose the adventure
This train is for wimps!

All my post's titles
Lyrics from some random song
Dang I'm a real nerd.

Found a Polaroid
Of a soft ice cream machine
and slushee maker

One more birthday gone
Now turn down that dang music
and get off my yard.

Currently listening to: Fair -

Paddling In His Canoe

The theme at PhotoFriday this week is "Relaxation." Sometimes there is nothing greater than a canoe, a calm lake, and no schedule telling you when to return.

Currently listening to: Hayden -


If You Don't Die In Glory

I just survived another trip around the sun. To be honest, there were two specific times when I did not think I would be celebrating that simple accomplishment.

Wow. What a year it has been. It could be just the memory starting to fail, but this last year is very well the best year that I have experienced. A brief recap: I had the chance to spend time with some amazing people on three different continents. I traveled thousands of miles by trains, planes, and automobiles, not to mention camels and horses. I watched the sun rise and set over mountains , deserts, big cities and forests. I had conversations with rock stars and orphans. I dined in fancy restaurants and around a campfire by a lake. I entered six countries for the first time, and even return a second time to one of them. Heck, I was even taken into custody by members of a communist military.

The best part is that I love my job, which allows me to work with some great students. Tonight they sang "Happy Birthday," with so much enthusiasm I almost wept. It ties the HBR boys of old for the spot of favorite times I've heard that song directed at me. It was the best part of this birthday.

Here is a little photo collage of some of the highlights of the year. Thanks to all who have played a part in making this a good one.
Here are links to each of the photos: 1. We Drink This Three Times, 2. Hanging Out On Top, 3. Close That Mouth, 4. Shameless Promotion, 5. Sunset At The Fishing Hole, 6. Joey Burns, 7. Super Anter Fistigi, 8. Escaping?, 9. In The Middle Of The Lake, 10. Reading Ephesians In Ephesus, 11. Uggg, Sweaty Pits, 12. The Trip Draws To An End, 13. Takin' Up Too Much Of The Picture, 14. Make A Wish, 15. IMG_7505, 16. From Asia to Europe, 17. View from the ride, 18. The Adventure Begins, 19. Table View, 20. Whatcha taking a photo for?, 21. Aim A Little Higher, 22. My Former Neighbors, 23. Mittlere Brücke, 24. Proving I Was There, 25. Head Trauma, 26. Dive Flag, 27. The RAs, 28. I Don't Want To Smile, 29. We're not alone, 30. Kebap Time, 31. Swiss Drummers, 32. Mustaches, 33. Lions, 34. Riding Off Into The Sunset, 35. Unlicensed Guides, 36. The Long Lonely Walk

Dang this really has been a fun three hundred and sixty five days. It will be tough to top this one, but I am going to try.

Currently listening to: David Wilcox - "Glory"


Give The Past The Slip

I have become addicted to Flickr and Youtube lately. There is something about tossing a bunch of photos and videos online that is appealing to the nerd in me. The last couple days I have been going through some old folders looking for cool stuff to toss up. In that process I came across this video. It is from the Freiburg Christmas Market from a few years back. I was filming a parade when all of sudden it stopped. Trapped against a wall, I could only film this guy and his whip. I was to oblivious to how close I was to some severe pain from that whip.

Currently listening to: Devo - "Whip It"


After Midnight

A few minutes late
But it's Friday somewhere, right?
So it is still good.

I almost forgot
So these are made on the fly
And won't be that good.

Forget the V8
A strawberry daiquiri
Is now a health drink.

The above haiku
Was written for the news part
Not to promote drinks.

A new restaurant
At least new to those I know
And man it was good.

She once sang Cordell
When she was a Cranberry
Now she's gone solo.

Currently listening to: Stereophonics - "Long Way Round"

In A Big Country

This week's theme at PhotoFriday is "The Country." Here is a shot from the trip through Mongolia last year. I would love to go back there again.

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Through The Streets Of Europe

A couple weeks ago I had the amazing opportunity to return to Europe for ten days. I went with the purpose of attending a conference for Christian educators and boarding staff. Fortunately my spring break lined up so I could get there early enough so I could get all my enjoyment out of the way before the meetings and sessions started. It was great to be able to walk along many of the paths I once wandered during my seven years there. It felt good to be able to still know my way around places like Annecy, Freiburg, or Laussane. Plus it was nice to be able to blend into the local population for a change. Heck, I even managed to get by with my limited German from time to time.
But the best part of the trip was the people. Sitting in one of my favorite churches listening to a great man of God preach. Being able to spend some time in the homes of some great friends. Sharing several meals with former coworkers. Listening to the plans and dreams of friends. While I know God has brought me to Korea at this point, I was glad he gave me an opportunity to return to reconnect.
One thing I heard at the conference was that there really are no coincidences, that God has a plan and order for all aspects of our lives. I saw this several times on the trip. For example, one day I decided to kill some time by heading into Lörrach for the afternoon. While wandering the streets, I bumped into some old friends I had hoped I would get the chance to see, but knew probably wouldn't. A few days while I took a break during some of the sessions, I walked into Lidl. Again, I bumped into some old friends who just the night before I was asking if they were around. I have had way too many things like this happen to just chalk it up to coincidence.

And I think it is those random events which are making it hard for me to fully plan my summer travels. Sometimes I hate having things set in stone. But if any of you are in America, especially between LA and Chicago and would be interested in a visit, drop me a comment, and perhaps you can help motive me to plan my trip.

Currently watching:


I've Never Felt So Alien

During my surfing time last night, I came across a Yahoo page about the Annual Assembly About Aliens. I did not have to read too far until the flashbacks began. Do not worry, it is not that I was having flashbacks to a time I was abducted by aliens. Instead it is when I spent some time living in a foreign land known as Northwest Arkansas. During my senior year of college, I traveled up to Eureka Springs for an Easter celebration with my family. While we were there, the annual Ozark UFO Conference was going on. Being the curious one that I am, I decided to take some time and check it out. I was not too sure what to expect, although I had some ideas based on my viewing of the X-files. Interestingly there were people of all walks of life. There was not one specific "type" of person there.

I will tell you that I decided it was time to leave when I overheard a conversation which involved the thickness of the door of a spacecraft and what some of the aliens looked like. As curious as I might have been to see the video about the woman who gave birth to an alien halfbreed, I bolted to the door.

While I'm on the topic of aliens, space and entertainment, can you name the coolest person to ever pick up a lightsaber? While many of you might claim it is Samuel L. Jackson, I disagree. Here lies the answer.

Currently listening to: Michael Card -


Hit The Ball And Touch 'Em All

I was flipping channels last night when I caught a report about the Korean Basketball team. Although I lack the basics of understanding the language, I was able to figure out that one of the foreigners playing in the league might be in trouble for some on-court violence. Today I read that Pervis Pasco has been kicked out of the league for good. One news source is referring to it as the "Pasco Incident," not to be confused with the "Pasco Curse," which unfortunately is also attributed to the same player.

Makes you wonder what the NBA would be like, if they took such a quick and serious approach to unruly players.

Speaking of Korean sports, baseball season is here. I was at the game tonight, and plan on catching quite a few more this season. It helps when tickets are 6000 Won and the price of food is the same as it is in the real world. The local team has a new center fielder. Jacob Cruz, has been a Giant, Tiger, Red, and Indian, but now is the newest member of the Eagles.
The interesting thing about Korean baseball, and most other sports over here, is that they only allow a couple foreigners on each team. In baseball there are only sixteen players in the league of eight teams. Now, I have no problem with this concept. I think it allows for national talent to be developed and encouraged. Yet, again I wonder what American sports would be like if they did this. What would the MBL be like if only two players from Venezuela, Mexico, or Japan be like? How about a hockey league with only a few players from Eastern Europe? And don't get me started on curling.

Currently listening to: Andrew Bird -


Thirteen Steps Back

It's post Six Six Six
Glad I'm not superstitious
And on the thirteenth.

It's been quiet here
While I've got a lot to say
Don't know what to share.

The Swiss autobahn
Topping one hundred-sixty
Racing fighter jets.

Do we really need
Vending machines for your pet?
What will they serve next?

Anxiously waiting
But before you leave the train
Leave your butt behind.

First night in Basel
Slept at the Y.M.C.A.
Where it's fun to stay.

She spoke in German
But I could still understand
Free cheese to sample.

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A Bittersweet Cartoon

It is probably no big surprise that when I open a newspaper, I usually go straight to the comic section. Growing up, I leaned toward the ones that not only made me laugh, but also had a little bit of truth to them. Calvin and Hobbes was clearly my favorite, but there are a few others who I still continued to read from time to time. Thus I was saddened to hear of Johnny Hart's passing today. He was the man behind the B.C., a cartoon about prehistoric cavemen. Interestingly enough, while the title assumes it is set "Before Christ," Hart's faith was very evident in his comic strip.

This was the cartoon published the day after he died. Now if it were up to me, I would hope that that would be the last of the B.C. It ends with a very clear message of what Hart believed. What a way to end a career.

We can only hope that when our time to go arrives we are doing something of value, both for this time and for eternity.

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