Oh Lord, purify me, make me a chalice in which you dwell, offer your sacrifice in me and spread your love through me. Let me shine like gold, adorn me with the jewels of virtue that I may always be open to you. Fill me. Overflow me. Let me be like that most perfect vessel, the Singular Vessel of Devotion, She to whom I cry for protection against the Evil One. I ask this for your glory, for the vessel is nothing without the sustenance inside, the cup nothing unless it is filled. Oh Lord, purify me.

Give me a word, Abba

Sunday, June 13, 2010

I wish...







...I could live in one of these cities. yes I know they're all quite different.

Word of the Day

6/13/10--17th Sunday in Ordinary Time


Pseudo-profundity: n. A Quality that my statements often exhibit. Deep, huh?


--Nate

Thursday, June 10, 2010

Nerdy-cult-following-humor

XKCD this link is a trap. you will never have a life again. don't do it. You HAVE to read it. It is SO funny.

Ok, so maybe not. Maybe you just don't get sophisticated intelligent humor.

Try Doghouse Diaries instead.This will consume your life and you will never get anything done ever again. Bring it on? OK. A little less nerdy, equally as funny

Or if you hate Twilight, love Harry Potter and want to hear all about people's lives, just go to MLIA You will hate yourself for doing this, but you will do it and you will find it strangely fascinating until you find something more time consuming, pointless and hilarious.

I have this strange love/hate relationship with these sites. I'm sure there are more.

Oh, and I think Doghouse is the best, jsyk.

Wednesday, June 9, 2010

Pretty and Boring.

If I have one major complaint against modern man, it's that he is close-minded. And one of the areas I really notice this is in the area of music. I have talked to so many people (mostly teens, I guess, or at least from the ambiguous group "young people") that only value music from the last 20 years (in some cases 30). Within the last three decades, there has been a huge boom in the music industry. In terms of modern pop music, the industry has gone from producers like George Martin, who kept within the framework of previous musical traditions (putting together the music symphonically, so my dad always says.) to the seventies where true "mainstream pop" came into being. From there, it went through the eighties and nineties and finally reached the 2000s. At this point, the hip hop movement truly flourished. The sixties was where pop was going through adolescence. The seventies were the college days of pop. I feel like the 2000s are the decade of the mid-life crisis. Pop music was divorced from its roots in the long range musical tradition and is now finally trying to deal with it. And the children of this divorce are as dysfunctional as can be expected. Hip-hop, that gloriously gyrating musical style has captured the bodies of the faithful. And what better music to portray the horrors of the sexual revolution than that which focuses primarily on the body. Just listening to current dance music and hip-hop is enough to make one gag. Why would anyone WANT to hear about this stuff, except to inspire inappropriate actions on the dance floor and in the bedroom?

And then there's that strange phenomenon called "indie", the rebellious eldest child of Pop. Always disagreeing with the parents just to disagree, and expressing that through music's pretty easy. Just don't do what anyone else is doing. The greatest sin is to be mainstream. if you see a trend, reject it.

I'm kind of dissatisfied with where pop has gone. Lady GaGa and Ke$ha, Nickelback, and Green Day. Owl City.

Certainly not boring. Pop is anything but boring.

Unless you actually think about it. The fact that the levels of complexity, the layers of meaning, the depths you can plumb in this music are about between 1 and 2. Not a singer? No need to be. Auto-tune it. ANYONE can be a pop-star. It takes no musical talent to be a musician anymore. All you need is a desire to work the system and the money to do it.

Take Lady GaGa for instance. She started out writing piano-pop/blues songs. they showed her skill, and she could sing. Now, it's all about effects on the voice, ruining any chance to share her real voice, raunchy lyrics, which completely degrade her, and music to make the body respond. It's one dimensional, and it's boring.

And they call Classical Music, Chant, Polyphony, The Beatles, The Moody Blues, The Beach Boys Boring?

If we wanted to engage our whole selves in the music, we could find enough to interest us for hours. That's how interesting it is. We are multi-faceted people. We should have multi-faceted music.

But no, it's pretty, maybe, but boring.

So much current music is both not pretty and boring.

Pop music should learn from its elders.

I have nothing against Pop music, but when that's the only music you'll listen to, it gets pretty obnoxious. Learn to use your mind when listening to music. Learn to expand your knowledge, broaden your horizons.

Or am I just preaching to the Choir?

Or are Choirs outdated?

I'm just preaching to the Band.

Tuesday, June 8, 2010

A New Job: Reflections off the Subway

So, This morning, I got on the subway system here in Milwaukee. Actually, not because there is none. I was looking for jobs as I've been doing for the past couple weeks, and Subway seemed my last chance. turned out it wasn't, and I'm kind of glad because they didn't seem very friendly at any of the Subways I visited. Instead I am being employed, miraculously, by Summit Educational Association. It is program to help kids develop in three areas, I guess. Academics, Recreation, and Character Building. It involves things like field trips, career speakers and sports games. And most importantly, one on one interaction with the kids. I will be a "Senior Staff" member, meaning I will be in charge of a group of 9-12 kids (boys, probably fifth grade) for eight weeks, helping them with reading, math and sports. And then getting to know them individually. It's kind of funny. This is obviously a more important Work than working at subway (Pun intended. Summit is in some mysterious way affiliated with Opus Dei.)

In fact, this is one opportunity for me to imitate God. He is the only one who can know billions of people on a communal level and an individual level. At Summit, I'm supposed to know my team as a team and get to know each kid as well. In Time it's pretty hard. It's something that I'm willing to try though. It's on a much smaller scale, but everything we do is. We can't love as much as God can.

The only way I can do it though is to let God work through me. It's not My Work, right? God works in wondrous ways, and one of those ways is through people. Maybe, just maybe my work which is actually God's work will help a child see the good, the true and the beautiful.

All i know is that it's a good as heck training for fatherhood...

Bring it on.

Friday, June 4, 2010

Smoke on the Mountain

I like to act, in case you were wondering. I haven't really gone without it for the past three years...or more. This summer, it's a play with the Christian Theatre Company called Acacia here in Milwaukee. The play is ok, not a masterpiece or anything. A musical which consists mostly of spirituals accompanied my bluegrass instruments. I play an up and coming Baptist preacher named Dennis. We meet at the "Church in the City" which is an interesting building for numerous reasons. The most interesting feature is a Venetian looking facade. It's kind of depressing inside, and the exterior is this Venetian balcony slapped onto a normal brick building.

It's hard to switch gears so much, which is what I've had to do. Coming home, trying to find work, driving people places (I drove to Chicago for the first time today) and then this play. I've never been an extremely disciplined actor, and my heart isn't really in it, so I'll have to steer pretty constantly to keep on track with it all. Not to mention that I have some pretty major responsibilities around the house. I don't think I'll have time to settle down this summer, do watercoloring, hanging out with friends. We'll see. I'll probably be getting together with Legit, my band, tomorrow.

One wants control, but so often we don't have it. It takes a lot out of you.

But being IN control is even more stressful. when we're in control, we have to worry about things.

Now, about getting a job...