Blog Entries

Seven Things About CWD

A meme from Dry Bones Dance, sent to me by Robin. I debated whether to do it or not, but since I’ve been doing so much academic stuff recently it seemed like fun.

1. Link to your tagger and post these rules on your blog.
2. Share 7 facts about yourself on your blog, some random, some weird.
3. Tag 7 people at the end of your post by leaving their names as well as links to their blogs.
4. Let them know they are tagged by leaving a comment on their blog.
5. Present an image of martial discord from whatever period or situation you’d like.

Seven Ol’ Facts:

  1. I’ve always had a lot of trouble with my name. Not only do I go by my middle name, but my name is really just Wess, not Wes, West, Weiss or Wesley. It’s amazing how often I see my name misspelled, and how often I have to repeat it when someone asks for it over the phone. Most recently, I’ve made friends with a guy named Wesley Daniel Hall. Not only are our names similar, and we work in the same bookstore, but he also has really curly hair (and is short and has a similar build as me). I’ve missed my shifts more than once because, until recently, we were both ‘Wess’ on the schedule. Needless to say we have a lot of fun with our shared name and hair.
Blog Entries

Dress Down Friday Student Tools Edition, Nas and Feist on the Street

Today’s Dress-Down Friday has an assortment of links for you to enjoy throughout the day.

A reader named Mark sent in a list of his favorite student web-tools and I thought I’d go ahead and share them here for the rest of you because they are pretty cool. He writes:

  1. – You email them a series of jpg photos of a document (or if you’re very bold a library book) and they send it back after a while in pdf format, all cleaned up and hi-contrast. Very handy in the library if you need a section of a book to read later and the book is non-lending. Plus you don’t have to pay for photocopying or waste any paper. All you need is a small digital camera. I use a small cybershot cell phone.
  2. – This is a note organizing and sharing system. It’s web based but you can get a Mac desktop client (and windows if you’re that way inclined). The reason I mention it is because IT CAN SEARCH HANDWRITING! I’ve only tested it briefly but i’d say it’s 80-90% effective, and my handwriting is barely legible. Check it out.
  3. Notebook – This is software from Circus Pony software. Pretty sure it’s Mac only. It looks just like a notebook, with tabs etc, but it can be expanded of course to as many pages as you need and it self-indexes. I’m considering it for next term.
Moving on to other student items and random tidbits:

Blog Entries

Back In The Swing of Things: Family and School

We made it back into town a little more than a week ago and it’s nice to be back home and getting back into routine. Growing up I never thought of myself as someone who really liked routine, but the times have undoubtedly changed. I like having a normal bedtime and getting-up time, which is currently around 6:30 am. As I’m thinking about this next year and all the work I need to try and finish up, I’m feeling the urge to be more regimented in how my day is structured. While I haven’t historically been a morning person, I’ve become one since being married. Emily is a morning person, and with her being a school teacher who has to get up at the crack-of-dawn in order to get out the door I’ve become much more of a morning person myself. Now I feel like I’m wasting the day if I sleep past 7:30, and consider the morning to be my most productive time. Though I don’t want to give you the wrong idea, I’m just talking about the workday, not the weekends that’s a whole other story…

As much fun as I had in England, it’s nice to be back with Emily and L, who is now seven months old. She’s growing very steadily, she’s very healthy, happy, and learning all kinds of new and awesome tricks. My favorite two things she’s been doing lately are clapping and making funny sounds using her hand in her mouth. It’s such a wonderful gift to have her around and watch her grow. I’m awed at how new everything is for her, and how exploratory she is, it definitely adds a level of appreciation back into life.

Blog Entries

Dress Down Friday is Back

It’s been a little while since I’ve done a dress down friday post (a casual listing of interesting web links) and so today seemed like a good day to start back up again, at least on an on-again-off-again basis.

Better World Books is an online bookstore that uses funds from their sales to help encouarge literacy throughout the world, not to mention recycling old used books and giving them to those in need, and shipping your order free to anywhere in the US [thanks JR].

Better World Books collects and sells books online to fund literacy initiatives worldwide. With more than two million new and used titles in stock, we’re a self-sustaining, triple-bottom-line company that creates social, economic and environmental value for all our stakeholders.

A church youth conference set to give away a semiautomatic assualt riffle to one teenager had to cancel the giveaway.

Green The Cultural

A friend sent this article by Wendell Berry the other day and said it was worth the read, he is right. The article looks at how our insatiable desire for more not only has adverse effects on our lives and economy but also on our environment. This limitlessness that’s rooted in an Englightenment mentality of progress is not only unchristian but ultimately destructive. He says,

The problem with us is not only prodigal extravagance but also an assumed limitlessness. We have obscured the issue by refusing to see that limitlessness is a godly trait. We have insistently, and with relief, defined ourselves as animals or as “higher animals.?? But to define ourselves as animals, given our specifically human powers and desires, is to define ourselves as limitless animals—which of course is a contradiction in terms. Any definition is a limit, which is why the God of Exodus refuses to define Himself: “I am that I am.??

And his point is that we do need limits, that this is the way things really work. He writes:

It is the artists, not the scientists, who have dealt unremittingly with the problem of limits. A painting, however large, must finally be bounded by a frame or a wall. A composer or playwright must reckon, at a minimum, with the capacity of an audience to sit still and pay attention. A story, once begun, must end somewhere within the limits of the writer’s and the reader’s memory. And of course the arts characteristically impose limits that are artificial: the five acts of a play, or the fourteen lines of a sonnet. Within these limits artists achieve elaborations of pattern, of sustaining relationships of parts with one another and with the whole, that may be astonishingly complex. And probably most of us can name a painting, a piece of music, a poem or play or story that still grows in meaning and remains fresh after many years of familiarity.

Read the rest of the article, he uses Militon and Christopher Marlowe’s Tragical History of Doctor Faustus to help make his point. it’s very thought provoking and well argued.

Faustian economics: Hell hath no limits—By Wendell Berry (Harper’s Magazine).

The Political

Advise Everyone… Endorse No One (by Shane Claiborne)

Shane Claiborne has a great post on the difference between “endorsing” and “advising” candidates. While I’ve already made my vote clear, I completely agree with Claibornes approach and points. One thing he said that really stands out is:

Our central allegience is to God’s Kingdom, and we invite everything else in the world to align itself with the norms of that upside-down Kingdom. That is what we endorse, and we stand behind everything and everyone that moves us closer to that – the coming of God’s Kingdom “on earth as it is in heaven.” And we get in the way of everything that contradicts and works against God’s Kingdom – interrupting injustice with grace.

God’s Politics – Jim Wallis blog, faith blog, religion, christian, christianity, politics, values.

Blog Entries

Small Milestones for This Blog

With the last post I crossed over the 700 post mark, not a small feat considering how long it took me to do this. The first post counted on this blog is from April 2004, though I’d been blogging for at least a year before that.

gathering in light 203A Dashboard 2014 WordPress

It was also during this time that I hit the 100,000 unique hits mark for this website since I started keeping track in 2006.

Blog Entries The Cultural

Wittenburg Door on Mark Driscoll

Most of you know about Mark Driscoll, he’s a mainstream pastor from Seattle with a church of about 6,000 people. He’s also infamous to many for being rather misogynistic, and focused on an overtly-testosterone reading of the Scriptures.  The satire magazine Wittenburg Door has done an article about his recent conference and it’s a good read.
Here’s a quote:

“The problem with our churches today is that the lead pastor is some sissy boy who wears cardigan sweaters, has The Carpenters dialed in on his iPod, gets his hair cut at a salon instead of a barber shop, hasn’t been to an Ultimate Fighting match, works out on an elliptical machine instead of going to isolated regions of Russia like in Rocky IV in order to harvest lumber with his teeth, and generally swishes around like Jack from Three’s Company whenever Mr. Roper was around.???

Driscoll Reaches New Spiritual Level, Kicks His Own Ass | Wittenburg Door