28 10 2009

(Somewhere along the line, I started using weak puns as post titles most of the time.  I don’t apologize for it, but please do understand it as less of a plea for attention and more of a neolithic spark to get the writing juices flowing.  That said, I will now simply paste lyrics below and publish.  Huh.)

I posted this solely for the song, not the video.  Feel free to let the video play without watching.  It seemed pretty corny to me, subject matter notwithstanding.

This song ran through my head a lot for a few years of my youth.  I’m not sure why, as I didn’t know anyone who had taken their own life at the time.  It simply haunted me and made me melancholy.  I have no follow up.   This is just a piece of my childhood that is now out there for everyone to see and judge accordingly.

Living on Prayer

23 10 2009

I listened to Francis Chan this morning (after spilling coffee on my pants).

If he hadn’t been swarmed by adoring fans, I would have asked him if my Pike’s Place Roast-stained jeans were ironically indicative of my materialistic mindset.

Instead, I just thought about prayer.  I don’t really pray enough, and I don’t really immerse myself in the Word enough.  I think those two things should go together in my life, and I think Lewis’s emphasis on nonverbal prayer is perfectly paired with the Word Himself.  Mr. Chan always makes me think a lot, and he is, to reiterate, what sparked my interest in the conversation I had with Alex the other day.

The only part that frustrated me is how distracted I always am by contemporary worship times.  I am wholly in favor of praising our God, but I’m seriously wondering if putting a bunch of people on a stage to lead repetitive ballads is the best way to do that.  Maybe it would be better if we mixed in more A cappella Psalms?  How about some group Scripture reading?

I just don’t like the idea of singing a set of widely-known (or recently-written by the song leader) praise songs as the sole method of “worship.”  It seems vainglorious to me, although not all the time.  Maybe this just means they are doing of a good production job for me to be distracted by the glamorous nature of it…?

We at the apartment were talking about how some famous “worship music artists” do concerts, and are paid for them.  I can understand that people need to make a living in their ministry, but I can’t help but think that St. Paul would be tearing his robes if he heard that a small church couldn’t afford to have _____ play worship at their church.  How screwed up is that?

And while we’re on the subject

12 01 2009

I distinctly connect certain songs with certain moments of my life.  Two songs in particular have been on my mind today, but I’ll stick to one of them for now:

Someday — Michael W. Smith, “I’ll Lead You Home” (1995).  *This whole album actually rocked my world throughout ’95-’98, but onward and upward.

At some point in elementary school, my mom started driving some of us kids to Crux climbing gym in San Luis on a regular basis.  I think we got some sort of discount through our school group, but I can’t swear to that.  Mainly because swearing on the internet is like peeing in the ocean.  You can do it, but if people you know find out, they’re less likely to go swimming with you.  Which isn’t really a big deal, since I don’t enjoy swimming all that much.  I like floating.  And diving.  Duck diving especially, although one time I think I may have almost died while doing that, which is why I’m not a big fan of seas in general.  Also, sharks.  Did you know the Caspian Sea is the world’s largest lake?  Did you know that in the Walden Media adaptation of C.S. Lewis’s Prince Caspian, Susan makes out with some guy towards the end?  Yeah, well, she does.  Which is either totally heretical to Clive’s intent, or totally consistent with the fact that he sends Susan to hell in The Last Battle. Well, sort of.  You have to read it to really get the feel for it.  I have them, but it’s an older collection that is kind of falling apart, and, to be honest, I don’t think you’ll take good care of them.  Go to a library.

So there we are, driving to Crux, and I’m around 10 or so.  I have recently acquired a pair of blue built-in radio headphones, which also doubled as loudspeakers to anyone sitting nearby, despite my aversion to listening to music loudly.  (I’m paranoid about hearing loss)  I remember listening to K-Life 89.3, which my mom was not a fan of in those days, in hopes of hearing either Someday or On My Way to Paradise, by Bob Carlisle.  As I listen to it now (after a little digging), I have no idea what attraction the latter held for me.  The guy’s voice is insufferable, and the lyrics are worthy of more eye-rolling than my out-of-shape retinas can muster.

So yeah, I was hoping to hear one of those songs on my cool headphones, and joy of joys, Good ol’ Carlisle began to fill my ears — when Juel (or perhaps Kathrene, but I’m fairly certain that Juel was more of a tattletale in those days) declared, “Robert’s listening to KLife!” in an accusatory tone to my mother.  I, of course, less-than-surreptitiously jerked the dial (located on my left ear) and declared that I was listening to the Dodger game.  Although I didn’t quite realize it, I was actually in good company for such a ploy, as neither my mom nor my sisters were astute enough to realize that Dem Bums probably weren’t cavorting about the pitch at 9:20 in the morning.  Unfortunately, my mom did what any good mom did, and declared that no one would be listening to anything if we couldn’t get along.  Then she told me to turn my headphones down, clearly insinuating that I, at my ripe old age, was entitled to make whatever choices I deemed virtuous, so long as my whiny sisters didn’t know.  Oh, the luxuries of being the favored child.  While later and conveniently-missing-from-the-records instances may offer competing evidence about my status as the ideal son, I knew, that day, that I was a man.

I’m pretty sure it wasn’t until the next week that I started crying halfway up the “Hard” level rockwall.

And now, as I listen to an ill-gotten copy of Someday, I finally enjoy the fullness of my irreversible connection between a staircase at Crux and Smitty singing about Armageddon.

Slipping Quietly into the Night

11 01 2009

Some of my life has very definitively revolved around certain people or activities.   One of my friends and I were pretty inseparable throughout most of my adolescence, while a lot of my free time was marked by reading or sports.  While a lot of that has changed (owing mostly to spatial difficulties) in the last few years, I have lately encountered a few dying friendships that have saddened me.  Certainly, one cannot sustain old relationships without hard work and invested time, but that doesn’t mean I have to like it.

Thankfully, I’ve found a wonderful cache of Geoff Moore to keep my melancholy musings mellifluously motoring for the forseeable future.

I hate losing people.  As some of my relationships over the years have slipped away, I have sometime felt thankful and sometimes felt guilty; occasionally, I have felt angry at that person for letting our relationship die.  In the last few weeks, I have decided to do what I can to leave the door open for some friends, whether it be a phone call, an email, or a quick visit when I happen to be in their neck of the woods.  This has involved some or no effort on my part at times; it has been frustratingly costly at others.

Back when I was looking at leaving for college, I foresaw myself with a completely new set of friends after I graduated, something like a changing cast of characters in a progressing show about growing up or something.  Now, though, I really regret the effort I have failed to expend in so many things…people are one of those, but just one.  In a weird sort of way, I’ve begun to see a sort of attraction in transitioning to a life of my own making.  My reputation at work is solely built upon what I write and say to those around me; my reputation around new friends is what they see much more than they hear.  (Gossip, thankfully, is a bit less pervasive in the post-college life. Sorry girls.)

Life is rich, and opportunities are plentiful.  I can’t change what I murphed up, but I can play NHL 2002.  I mean, move on.

But really, I’m mostly enjoying my own discovery of what it’s all about.

When(ever) the growing gets tough?

20 06 2008

Actually, I’ve been scared by how easy life has been the last few weeks.

I’ve been working 30 hours a week (with an inimitable sleep schedule to boot) that I get paid for while also doing my best to keep the Seahorses afloat in the world of soccer publicity.

I think I could use some lifeguard training.

Today, I got a call about even more work — Henry got my name from someone or somewhere and wants me to interview a bunch of Christian Music Artists at the “Somebody Loves You Crusade” in LA next weekend.

Of course, it would be fulfilling a boyhood dream to get to talk to Jaci Velasquez one on one…

The catch? The pieces are all filmed on camera — whether or not I would be on camera was unclear — when I asked Henry that exact question, I found it hard to communicate to him that I was simulataneously hoping that I would not be shown while also sounding grateful for the offer in the first place.

I’ll let him know on Saturday. I’m leaning towards doing it right now, if only because it’d be a once-in-a-sometime experience. I mean, let’s be honest– how many people get the chance to interview the rocking band P.O.D. (Payable On Death — I’m sad that I know that) and get PAID for it?