PutAwayTime

For those of you who don’t live where the seasons change, indulge me a bit while I give you an opportunity to exercise your imagination. For those of you who get to enjoy the seasons you may not realize that those who count Spring, Summer, Fall and Winter are missing one or two other seasons.

Between Fall and Winter is a short season called “PutAway” (which I suppose has as its counterpart the period between Winter and Spring called “TakeOut”).

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Color Blind

Ishihara Color Vision Test

Part of the things that I am thinking about is racism — especially how the concepts of race and justice go together.

I’m thinking about this because at this time in the history of our country, racism is a subject that we are struggling to deal with.

This struggle is brought to light by current social events that seem always to be reported with some hint of racism. Phrases like “white policeman” and “black criminal” as well as “Indian immigrant” and “white privilege” are phrases that you hear as part of just about every news story on television and radio. I hear phrases like “my Indian friend” or “black friends”. This makes me uncomfortable. I think that phrases and reporting like this sometimes makes a bad situation worse.

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Shoelaces Untied

 

I like to think that I am good at a lot of things. But, it’s highly likely that I’m bad at way more things than I am good at. Discipline in one of those things that I don’t excel at. For me, discipline falls in the same category as golf, basketball, poker, curling, dancing and and whole lot of other things.

The last time I had a conversation about discipline, I attempted to clarify where I stood by comparing myself and how I struggle with discipline to a pair of shoelaces. I start out tied tight and neat but, as time goes on, I get looser and looser until I become a hazard to myself and need to be retied. Read the rest of this entry »


Why You Won’t Find Me on Facebook

facebook-logo_rotatedFacebook and I have a tenuous relationship. I read incoming posts. I almost never put posts on online. I’m a consumer. Not a producer.

The reason? Because, to me, Facebook makes it too easy to generate misunderstanding by breaking two important rules of communication —

  • Rule 1: Know your audience; and
  • Rule 2: Encourage understanding by delivering the whole story in context

Let me clarify with a story:

Recently, I saw a post from someone I was Facebook “friends” with. This person is a public figure in the community and I respect his work — a lot.

This post told a story about a situation that he and his friend experienced. It was a lot like other typical Facebook posts. A photograph with the two Read the rest of this entry »


Things in 3’s

12threes-600

Three Stooges — Larry, Moe and “Curley” Joe (NY Times / UPI)

Bike ride on the way home from church on Sunday.

I put together a list of things that always appear in threes. (For no reason other than I could and because that’s what you’re supposed to do on a bike!)

Here goes…..

  • Father, Son, and Holy Spirit
  • Winken, Blinken and Nod
  • Stop, Look and Listen
  • Rock, Paper, Scissors
  • Shadrach Meshach and Abednego
  • Larry, Moe and Curley
  • Earth, Wind and Fire
  • Acey, Ducey, One Eyed Jack

More….

  • Nina, Pinta and Santa Maria
  • Snap, Crackle and Pop
  • Flopsy, Mopsy and Cottontail
  • Bacon, Lettuce and Tomato

 


Why I Write

I assume that everyone who has ever attempted to put pen to paper (or in this case fingers to keyboard) has asked that question.

Why am I doing this and why is it so hard?

I write because the thoughts in my head (whatever they might be at the moment) are usually scrambled and  confused.

In my head my thoughts exist in a multi-level building, some connected and others random and not particularly connected to any other thoughts. They reflect the way I think.

My thinking is noisy and confused.

Writing is a way to take these thoughts and force them into a linear organization. One thought comes first and others follow. My work of writing is transferring these thoughts from their disorganized, chaotic noisy world to a world of organization and quiet order.

Writing is a therapy. Just like a walk in the woods or sitting on beach watching the ocean calms the soul and body, so does writing. It defuses the chaos in my head and brings quiet.

Yes, it’s work. Order from chaos is not something that comes naturally or easily to me.

Yes, the journey to the first word is usually hard. But the pleasure, when I realize my mind is at peace again and things have been sorted out is amazing and well worth it.

I think I’ll keep this up. It’s good for the soul.


On the Concept of Fragility

I’ll admit it… I am a news junkie. I’m not sure where my attraction to random facts and stories comes from but I suppose that part of it is that I just like to know what going on in other places besides the immediate area that I live in.

Technology and the Internet has gone a long way to feeding this addiction. I have, over the years collected a set of links to various blogs and publications that I read on a regular basis. This list is always being re-invented and re-ordered as my interests change and is always accessible to me on all my devices in a nice concise form using an application called Netvibes.

Part of the benefits of my digital wandering is that I sometimes run across fascinating concepts and ideas that can (or should) be adopted and applied to situations other than the situation where I first found them. Read the rest of this entry »


Justice One Drop At A Time

I remember some years ago, someone telling me not to try and “boil the ocean” and set yourself up to do an impossible task all at once.

And so it is with acts of justice.

It’s easy for us to think when we read of hungry people, displaced families, or a low-functioning legal system, that the best way for us to restore justice is by executing on a large, integrated plan involving lots of people and lots of money.

That’s why some see problems related to injustice and absolutely impossible to solve. They see the solution as impossible.

But, just like a journey that begins with a single step, so, often does justice.

If that’s the case, then an effective way to proceed is one small step followed by another — all moving toward the same goal. Want to combat the injustice of hunger? Start by providing a meal for someone in need. Want to combat the injustice of prostitution and sex slavery? Find a local shelter and volunteer one day a week.

It’s when all of the single small tasks are combined toward a larger goal that justice gets done and the world becomes a better place.

OK!!


Mile 0

The entire Venture Expeditions Midwest Tour team in Downtown Minneapolis

Every journey, they say, begins with a single step — or in this case some serious training about how to ride and how to build a community with a group of 13 other people.

I thought at first that this whole adventure was just a ride from Minneapolis to Chicago. I’m finding out really quickly that it is much, much more than that.

Sure, a part of these first days is some important training we will need one our ride but another, more important aspect of these first two days is building a community of people who are passionate about doing something, in some small way to restore this world back to the way that God intended it to be. It’s called justice. Read the rest of this entry »


T Minus One

Anyone who watched the Apollo launches will remember the phrase “T Minus”. It was used along with a number that indicated the number of minutes / seconds until the Saturn V Rocket along with the Apollo capsule perched on top started it’s long, slow climb to space.

Today, I’m at T Minus One. One day to go. If I am not prepared now…. well, I’ll never be prepared for next week’s adventure ride from Minneapolis to Chicago with 13 other people who I have not yet met.

A countdown is a sequence of backward counting to indicate the time remaining before an event is scheduled to occur. NASA commonly employs the term “T-minus” during the preparation for and anticipation of a rocket launch, and even “E-minus” for events that involve spacecraft that are already in space, where the “T” could stand for “Test” or “Time”, and the “E” stands for “Encounter”, as with a comet or some other space object.

Other events for which countdowns are commonly used include the detonation of an explosive, the start of a race, the start of the New Year, or any anxiously anticipated event. An early use of a countdown once signaled the start of a Cambridge University rowing race.

The first known association with rockets was in the 1929 German science fiction movie Die Frau im Mond (English: Woman in the Moon) written by Thea von Harbou and directed by Fritz Lang in an attempt to increase the drama of the launch sequence of the story’s lunar-bound rocket.(Wikipedia)

I only know most of the rest of the team  I am spending the next Read the rest of this entry »