Wednesday, October 31, 2007

YouTube Thursday: Nooma - Name

I know this is a little early (HT: Believing Thomas)

Nooma is a video ministry of Rob Bell. This is the newest one and it's only available today and tomorrow, Thursday November 1. Enjoy.

Tuesday, October 30, 2007

Heroes Wednesday: The Line

Image courtesy of HeroesWiki

Two words: Wow... Crappy. Seriously, I usually watch the episode with the commentary the next day on and I just couldn't do it. Not with this one. It was that bad to me. Look, that thing that I talked about a couple of weeks ago "My fear is that the writers are running out of steam. They're running out of steam with the characters that we got to know and love last year, and so they're introducing new characters so they don't have to have the other characters in each week, thus exhausting their stories." I'm becoming more convinced that this is happening. The best part of last week was the Nathan Petrelli/Parkman storyline. Where was that this week? Nonexistent.

The best part of this week was the HRG in the Ukraine storyline. We saw the levels that he's willing to stoop to to get what he wants, even removing the memory of a dead daughter and then killing the Company man. We saw the paintings and that will be interesting. My biggest complaint was a continuity one. How could it be daylight in Russia and daylight in California at the same time (referencing the scene where Claire calls Bennett)?

Everything else felt badly written. Sylar seemed like he needed to be twirling a handlebar mustache while he talked about how evil he is. I mean, geez louise. Just terrible and a storyline that's going nowhere fast.

Claire and West? Boring. Unless West ends up evil. Then he's evil and boring.

Mohinder is back to taking his stupid pills again. Seriously, he trusts Bob? And thinks he can make calls from within the Company and not be detected? And now he's working with Jessiki?

Hiro and Kenzei is really stupid now. Kenzei betrays Hiro and Yaeko over love? Seriously? And what's Ando's purpose? To give James Kyson Lee screen time? Give him something real to do!

Peter and Caitlyn make it to Montreal and then to post-apocalyptic New York? Wait, haven't we seen that before? Like last season?

Look I still like the show. I'm still going to watch it, but I'm not on a blind bandwagon here. When it's bad, I'll call it bad. And last night, it was bad. Like Alan Sepinwall said and this article referred to as well.

My score: D+, just for the HRG stuff. Next week needs to not suck.

Costume Pictures

Check back later tonight for some pictures that I forgot to upload last night (I don't know what the embarrassed smiley is, but I'd do it here if I did).

Edit: And here they are...

Kinsey ready for the Halloween party

Kinsey and Connor (in the green) playing with friends at the party

Two cuties

I think she thinks she's cute

That's not laughing; that's crying...

Monday, October 29, 2007

An Almost Perfect Sports Weekend and a great NYTimes article

Vandy won!

Titans won!

Red Sox won!

UT won... Oh well, I guess you can't have it all.

Also, Mike Cope linked to this article from the NYTimes that is really good and interesting about the changing face of evangelicals in politics. A quote from it

For the conservative Christian leadership, what is most worrisome about the evangelical disappointment with President Bush is that it coincides with a widening philosophical rift. Ever since they broke with the mainline Protestant churches nearly 100 years ago, the hallmark of evangelicals theology has been a vision of modern society as a sinking ship, sliding toward depravity and sin. For evangelicals, the altar call was the only life raft — a chance to accept Jesus Christ, rebirth and salvation. Falwell, Dobson and their generation saw their political activism as essentially defensive, fighting to keep traditional moral codes in place so their children could have a chance at the raft.

But many younger evangelicals — and some old-timers — take a less fatalistic view. For them, the born-again experience of accepting Jesus is just the beginning. What follows is a long-term process of “spiritual formation” that involves applying his teachings in the here and now. They do not see society as a moribund vessel. They talk more about a biblical imperative to fix up the ship by contributing to the betterment of their communities and the world. They support traditional charities but also public policies that address health care, race, poverty and the environment.

It's long, but it's a very, very good read.

And here's an interesting article that includes a response to it from

Friday, October 26, 2007

They Like Jesus But Not the Church Part 1

I just recently finished reading a book by Dan Kimball called They Like Jesus But Not the Church.

When I picked it up at the Zoe Conference, my friend Adam told me that I wouldn't be able to put it down. I kind of internally scoffed at that, but in getting into it, I found that he was exactly right. While the book is written towards church leaders (of which I am not), I think it would be extremely valuable for all members of the Church to read. What Kimball did was become friends with people outside the church and in that, being a pastor, began to talk with them about the church and their perceptions and about Jesus and their perceptions of him. What he found was what became the title of the book, that people really like Jesus but not the Church.

Now at this point it's easy to say, "Well, sure. They like this pop culture view of lovey hippie Jesus who loves everyone and never gets mad, and might have gotten killed for some religious reason. And of course they don't like the Church. Christians are presented in the media and by some unfortunates like Dobson and Robertson and the late Fallwell as overzealous Bible beaters who hate everyone. Of course non Christians are going to think this way." Which I think is one of Kimball's points. People are basing perceptions on outside influences. One of the best ways to counteract that is by Christians not being locked into their own private ghettos of safe behavior and rather engaging the world.

At any rate, Kimball divided the book into three parts: an intro, the main meat, and a "what to do now."

In the main meat, Kimball divides the comments that people made about the church into 6 groups.
  1. The church is an organized religion with a political agenda.
  2. The church is judgmental and negative.
  3. The church is dominated by males and oppresses females.
  4. The church is homophobic.
  5. The church arrogantly claims all other religions are wrong.
  6. The church is full of fundamentalists who take the whole Bible literally.
I kind of agree with these things, although as a Christian I might substitute the phrase "can be" for "is." And when I realized that I agreed with a lot of these perceptions, that was a flash of realization... that there could be a lot of people who go to a church that really like Jesus, but not the Church, but continue to go out of tradition or whatever, but it's a dead experience. There's a lot of experience of church but not of Jesus. And that's a problem.

Next week, why church leaders will have a tendency to misuse this book.

Thursday, October 25, 2007

YouTube Thursday: Taylor Mali

My buddy Gavin linked to this video the other day by a Slam Poet known as Taylor Mali...

And I think that one is brilliant. Just freaking brilliant. But this next one almost makes me want to go back into teaching...

Almost. You can find Taylor Mali at

Wednesday, October 24, 2007

Heroes Wednesday: Fight or Flight

image from

And this one was better than last week which was better than the week before...

OK, now this is getting more like it. I thought the plots are getting tighter and now we're getting more of the Heroes interacting with each other. That's the kind of thing I want to see.

I liked Monica again this year and how much she's enjoying her power, although... didn't we see a lot of this same thing with Hiro last year? I also liked how Mohinder showed up at the end, which made me wonder how the Company finds out about people's powers being activated. Is it like (nerd alert) the Ministry of Magic in Harry Potter or (super nerd alert) the Psi Corps in Babylon 5? Is there some alert that goes off somewhere? And will Micah remember Mohinder from Kirby Square?

Mohinder is showing that his temporary brain power is leaving him quickly by taking Molly to the Company. Sheesh Mohinder. The "best" thing he did in this episode was tazing Jessiki, which btw I thought we resolved this plot last season. I thought the last episode was about Niki integrating Jessica into her personality? Did that not take?

Mohinder of course calls Bennett and the Haitian who are in front of a green screen that supposedly looks like Odessa, Ukraine. Bennett tells him it's a bad idea to take Molly and then disappears for the rest of the episode, like his daughter. Which means no West this week! Yay!

Parkman also thinks that taking Molly to the company is a bad idea, but he leaves for Philly with Nathan to find the Nightmare Man, also known as Daddy Parkman. Nathan gets a great line in about not being a cargo plane, which also might have been a shot at Parkman's weight, but I could just be projecting there.... Anyway, they go to see Daddy Parkman who seems to be a decent scared guy until we remember that he put Molly in a coma and then locks Matt and Nathan inside their nightmares. Which also ends up being one of the most creative fight scenes that I've seen in a while, with Matt "seeing" his wife and her child while he's "in" prison. He starts fighting a guard who ends up being Nathan who is in his own nightmarish apocalyptic New York (alternate reality or still a possible future?) and ends up fighting his own nuclear mutated (?) self who is Parkman in reality. It was really creative, really well shot, and a good use of Daddy Parkman's power. Oh and Daddy Parkman seems to be targeting Bob.

Sylar and the twinzzzzzzzzz don't appear in this one, so the only unrelated plot is Peter in Ireland where he rediscovers his painting power (again, didn't we go through this a lot last year?) and we see where he got the electric power from, a little blond girl who the interwebs tell me played Veronica Mars in a show apparently no one watched on the WB or CW or UPN or something. She kills Caitlyn's brother and Peter and Caitlyn decide they need to go to Montreal where there is apparently a replica of the Cathedral of Notre Dame.

Oh, and Hiro is still helping Kenzei. btw, if you want some more insight into this plot, visit the website for the Yamagato Fellowship and watch the videos about the legend of Kenzei and try to figure out where Hiro will work into it.

At any rate, I enjoyed this episode much more that the previous ones, and it looks like next week will be pretty good as well, even with the twinzzzzzzz return. B+

Tuesday, October 23, 2007


Kinsey's first first grade report card came out yesterday and Sheryl and I are very happy with her. She's doing well and really enjoying it. She's really good in math, which I never was, and is doing really well in her reading.

It's interesting about how my attitude about grades has changed from when I was in school until now. When I was teaching, grades were often that deadline that I didn't look forward to doing. either because I wasn't completely ready or I knew that some kids were going to be very disappointed. My other feeling was that was WAY too much importance put on grades. Grades are supposed to be indicators of how much the students had learned in the class. Did it always properly reflect that? Well, in my classes, I hope that it did. But when we started putting such import on the grades and rather than the actual knowledge gained from a class... that's when cheating becomes rampant. When the focus is put on the number score on a piece of paper, rather than the actual knowledge gained, that's when we've gotten all screwed up. And that's the school's fault and the parent's fault and the college's fault. And it's a slippery slope that we all get caught up in, because we want the best for our kids and we put so much import on their future that we make them uber-competitive with each other. And that doesn't help them either.

So, for Kinsey, grades are important and we want her to make good grades, but we want her to learn and do her best at everything she tries. And we also want her to know that we will never judge her worth based on those grades. We're happy when she makes does well in school, but that's not where her worth comes from.

Monday, October 22, 2007

A Very Special YouTube Monday: Drinking Responsibly

You might not be a Daily Show fan. I've been one for a while, about 7 years or so. Recently, Comedy Central launched a website, wherein you can find many fun things, but most especially old videos from the show. This one is from 2001 and stars Stephen Colbert and current Office star Steve Carell in a way you can only imagine.

Just as a note, that is not Steve Carell acting drunk. That is actually footage of Steve Carell getting drunk. Oh, and it should also show that Steve Carell's chest in the 40 year old Virgin was not a prosthetic.

Oh yeah, and Dumbledore is/was gay.

Friday, October 19, 2007

Brian McLaren, Churches of Christ, and Evangelicals

In the conversation with the Otter Creek staff that I referred to last week, McLaren talked about evangelicalism. And to frame this properly, it's necessary to talk a little about an idea in his new book Everything Must Change. In it, McLaren talks about 5 different framing stories that most people exist in.

1) Imperialism - the idea that to truly effect change and the good of the world, it has to be controlled and/or subjugated, or we must align with those who are in control. In Jesus' day, this would have been the Saducees.
2) Revolution - Whoever is in control must be taken out of power. This would have been the Zealots.
3) Scapegoating - It is someone else' fault that things are as bad as they are. They must be purified or set right in order for things to get back to where they need to be. This would have been the Pharisees.
4) Isolationism - Everything's gone to Hell. And we must get away from it to protect ourselves. This would have been the Essenes.
5) The Kingdom of God. This is the message of Jesus.

Ok, so in the discussion, McLaren talked about how Churches of Christ actually have a benefit in how they have been separate from the rest of the Christian world. He contends that much of the evangelical world is not caught up in the framing story of the Kingdom of God. Rather, they have bought into the Imperialism story, especially as they have associated themselves with particular political stories. He called it a "membrane" between us and the rest of the Christian world. Now, he didn't say that it's a bad thing that people like Max Lucado have been publicly associated with Churches of Christ and popular in the wider Christian world, but it does make the membrane thinner. McLaren feels that some of the more progressive Churches of Christ can speak very prophetically to the wider Christian world about the message of Jesus, rather than buying into any of the other framing stories.

Now, notice that he's not calling for isolation from the "denominations," but engagement. Rather than pull up our tents, we go out into the wider Christian world and call not for a restoration of the forms of the first century church, but for a restoration of a community of people who are seeking to become disciples of Christ.

It was an intriguing part of the conversation and I'm curious to hear other people's reactions.

Thursday, October 18, 2007

YouTube Thursday: When Political Debate Gets Fun

Former White House Press Secretary Tony Snow visits The Daily Show with Jon Stewart, and they stay civil.

Part One

Part 2

Wednesday, October 17, 2007

Heroes Wednesday: The Kindness of Strangers

I have a creeping fear. My fear is that the writers are running out of steam. They're running out of steam with the characters that we got to know and love last year, and so they're introducing new characters so they don't have to have the other characters in each week, thus exhausting their stories. This week, we didn't see Hiro or Peter or Niki at all. And with the introduction of Monica this week, as well as Maya and Alej-zzzzzzzzz earlier this year, it have this creeping fear that the writers are losing some steam on the stories...

But, right now, I'm still enjoying it. I really thought adding Sylar to the Maya-Alej-zzzzzz story made them instantly more interesting. Monica has a pretty cool power too, but isn't it another one like Peter or Sylar that could make her too powerful or can she only do what her body is capable of? For instance, can she do the wrestling move she saw but not powerlift 500 pounds? One thing I really loved about the Monica/Micah storyline was that long hug he gave her and the focus the camera put on his hand. It made me wonder if he was trying to "fix" her like he fixed the TV.

I also enjoyed how Matt and Nathan worked together. We found out more about Matt, particularly what happened with Janice, and about his father being in the 12, as well as being Molly's boogeyman. We lost Neanderthal Nathan when he lost the beard, but we also saw his reflection in the mirror. And after several rewinds and pauses on the TiVo, it is actually Nathan and not Peter in the reflection, so it answers that question.

The Molly storyline is still good, and I really like the little actress they have for her role I think she does a great job with her stuff.

The Claire West storyline is really doing nothing for me. I hate stereotyping, but maybe this appeals more to women than to men? However, it also feels like we're treading over some of the same ground as last season. Claire and Bennett not being completely honest with each other, leading to the most uncomfortable dinners ever... Liking Lyle's responses at the table.

This one's a B- It still feels like we're treading water, even though there is some movement in good directions with Sylar particularly, and we've got stuff to look forward to with Bennett and the Haitian and Matt knowing where his dad is now.

Tuesday, October 16, 2007

Addendum: Cute Pictures!

Just because they're too cute not to share...

Deseg and Reseg: How it affects us

Kinsey is going to have to move schools. We're being rezoned. That's how it affects us. We haven't told her yet, because what good will it do? She can't do anything about it and it would just be a distraction from her school work.

Now for the real fun.

The other way that it affects us is that many of the inner city kids will not be a part of her life. Some might consider this a good thing, but honestly, I don't. Here's why. I went to high school at an academic magnet school downtown and then taught at one close by where at least 30% of the population had to be African-American. That's why MAGNET schools were created to draw white students to the inner city. One of the happy things that came out of that was an exposure to other races and ideologies that I would not necessarily have been exposed to. In high school, my circle of friends included a Korean, an Indian (subcontinental), a couple of white thrashers, and an African American. And we all just kind of hung out together and didn't worry about race.

What I worry about this is that our kids will not be exposed to different cultures to the extent that they were before. Are neighborhood schools a good thing? Yes, I think they are. And hopefully, in the inner city, they will encourage more parent involvement in the schools, but they also are de facto resegregation. And maybe we've been moving toward this for a while. Most private schools are de facto resegregation (and unfortunately, if you look at when most private and/or Christian schools were started here in Nashville, you'll see a sad correlation to when the desegregation court order was passed and enforced). When I was teaching and we had assemblies where kids could sit where they wanted, it was like the Red Sea parting: African Americans on one side, Caucasians on another. I don't think it was intentional racism; it was simply cultural affinity and comfort within that setting.

What I'm afraid that this rezoning will do is remove an excuse for people to have to interact with those different than themselves. I know that I'm a more rounded person because of my exposure to different cultures and races. And hopefully, we can help Kinsey and Connor do it outside of their school educational experience.

Monday, October 15, 2007

Desegregation and Resegregation

Very busy today, but here's where I'm going tomorrow, particularly with regard to how it will affect Kinsey.

School Zone Plan Rekindles Old Worries

Friday, October 12, 2007

Brian McLaren, Worship, and the Churches of Christ

Last Friday, the staff at Otter Creek had the chance to sit down with Brian McLaren for a couple of hours. We got to talk about a lot of things about the direction of our own congregation and some internal things, but he said some very interesting things about the Churches of Christ as well, that I want to float out there for discussion.

One of the things McLaren talked about was the instrumental music issue. McLaren comes from a sister group to the Churches of Christ called the Plymouth Brethren. This group began in Great Britain about the same time as the Churches of Christ and it seems that the progenitors of both movements were reading from the same playbook. The Brethren are non-denominational, non-instrumental, and trying to restore the first century church. The main difference that that they don't focus on baptism to the extent that Churches of Christ do. In dealing with the issue of music, McLaren basically said that the argument is dumb. Now it's being dumb doesn't stop it from being discussed a lot, particularly if you've been over at Mike Cope's blog in the last week or so. McLaren mad the point that HOW we sing is not nearly as important as WHAT we sing. As a result, while we sing about the relationship about "God and Me" and that's good to sing about, to sing about it to the exclusion of communal songs ("God and We") as well as songs about God's Justice in the world.

Now what this seems is not only that arguing for acapella is dumb, arguing for instrumental music is just as dumb. Look, I could make a Biblical case for instrumental worship in the New Testament under the new convenant (Did the disciples worship at the Temple after Jesus' death and resurrection? Yep. Were instruments used at the Temple? Most likely. Ergo...) However, what's the point? I don't believe that worship with musical instruments is an issue that will decide my salvation, so I'm OK with it either way.

What does disturb me is people who do think my salvation depends on it. However, I also know that any discussion or argument or debate that I might get into someone about it is going to be pointless. Someone is not going to convince me otherwise and I'm not going to convince them. I choose to worship with a congregation that embraces both traditions, but I recognize also that what we sing is much more important than how we sing it.

Next week, why Brian McLaren thinks progressive Churches of Christ should stop trying to be like "evangelicals."

Thursday, October 11, 2007

YouTube Thursday: Brian McLaren on Worship

I thought this was a very interesting video, particularly coming off of the Zoe conference last weekend and hearing McLaren there.

I'll have some more McLaren-related thoughts tomorrow, particularly about the Churches of Christ and my home church, Otter Creek.

Wednesday, October 10, 2007

Heroes Wednesday: Kindred

Image courtesy of HeroesWiki

So... let me get this straight. A guy can peep on a girl, call her out in the middle of the high school hallway, call her out in class, and all you have to do is be able to fly to get her to kiss you? Holy crap, if only I'd known it was that easy.

That notwithstanding I still enjoyed this episode. I really enjoyed having Sylar back. He's evil and loving it. It was good at least knowing something about Niki and Micah, although a belated RIP to DL. A question, did people think that Niki went to the Company because she has the disease or because she's wanting to get rid of her power? I initially thought she wanted to get rid of the power, but I've read theories that she has the disease. And of course, getting our weekly dose of a Star Trek alumna in Nichelle Nichols. Then there was Maya and Al..........zzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzz.

Oh, sorry, I must have dozed off there. We continued the Peter in Ireland storyline with him discovering the powers he has, but just not how to access them. I will say that rewound the scene where Peter was choking the gang's traitor and that look of evil joy on his face was just scary. I sense bad things in Peter's future. Hiro in Japan is still fun and Kenzei is becoming a more interesting character. It seems that now that Hiro has helped him fulfill the stories that he knows, it would be time for him to leave, but it seems he's still attracted to the swordsmith's daughter. I liked how Ando was brought into the fold of the story. I really liked that storytelling trick.

And finally back to the Bennett/Mohinder story.

First off, here's an image of 8/8 (not for the squeamish):

Ok, what do we know about Isaac's paintings. They don't always come true in a very straightforward way. I would say that some don't come true at all, because New York didn't blow up, but the series isn't over yet. What we seem to have here is HRG dead from a bullet to the eye and Claire kissing some unknown guy. It would seem that the way the writers want us to think is that Claire and Peeping Tom the Stalker have killed HRG because he interfered with their love and now they're making out in celebration. I will be very interested to see how this one plays out.

My score: B- mainly because we're still setting up the pieces for whatever will happen.

Tuesday, October 09, 2007


When Connor first started eating table food, he would eat anything. Anything. Broccoli. But ever since last year, when he had his first sinus infection, he has become the pickiest eater that I've ever seen. If he doesn't like something, he won't let us put it in his mouth. He will close his mouth and turn his head and strike out at the spoon that's holding it. And if we do manage to get something he doesn't like into his mouth, he will literally hold it on his tongue and then stick his tongue out and scrape it off his tongue. It's the most amazing and frustrating thing to watch. His diet consists now of bread, cheese, and fruit. Unless we can hide peas in his applesauce, but he's starting to get wise to that.

Any suggestions? Kinsey wasn't really like this much at all, so are we just waiting for his tastes to develop? Do we just keep trying things until we find what he likes? I'm curious about other people's experiences.

Monday, October 08, 2007

Zoe Conference 2007 debrief

I really enjoyed the conference this year. The leadership part was really good, particularly Randy Harris talking about losing his voice, spiritually, as well as his talk in the "discernment" sessions about prioritizing the areas of change in our lives.

McLaren was just great of course, especially his opening talk where he talked about the societal machine and framing stories. His talk Friday afternoon and Saturday afternoon were also good, but not as memorable for me personally. I was kind of distracted by a few other things going on, tech wise. I had another close encounter with McLaren that I might talk about later, but maybe not.

Once the worship conference started, my work started. Outside of my kids making a cameo on the screens (must turn off screensaver next year) and a few lyrical and background glitches, I think that side of it went well. My judgment of how well I do tech work is how un-noticeable I am. I wasn't perfect this year, but I don't think it was too bad.

I'm always interested in how the songs are going to be congregationally received and sang. "You Never Let Go" was much better live acapella than I thought it was on the CD, so that was a pleasant surprise. "The Word is Alive" also came across very nicely. "Let God Arise" was generally ok. People seemed to REALLY want to clap on it, but the chorus gets weird with singing on off beats that it kind of died out. "You Are Good" wasn't too bad, but honestly, after hearing Zoe sing that with a Black Gospel group and their band before, this kind of paled in comparison.

Randy and Mike were very good in their talks and Zoe newbie Dean Barnam from Woodmont Hills did a nice job for his first time. I liked watching the painting of course, but I found the blacklight Jesus reveal to be a little bit cheesy. I know a lot of other people liked it, but hey, what can I say?

Probably the best part of the weekend for me was working with Doug Sanders. On Friday, he texted me asking if I would go run a couple of errands with him. I'm usually not able to do this, because of my full time job or on weekends trying to spend some time with my kids, but this time I was. Friday, we went a picked up a little girl whose family Doug has been working with and took her to school after she missed her bus, because she'd been pushed down. Then we took some sleeping bags to a Cub Scout group from the inner city who were going on a camping trip and met their Scoutmaster who is a great great guy. Saturday, he texted me again asking if I would run north of town to take some groceries to a family who got caught up in the food stamp bureaucracy and didn't get their stamps renewed and had no money. So Doug raided the church's refrigerator and went to Publix and we took some food to the hotel where this family of five is having to live right now. They weren't home, so we dropped off the groceries in the lobby with the manager, and Doug made another connection with HER and if she encounters people who need help, she has Doug's number and can call him. And that part to me was the best part of the weekend. Seeing old friends was great. Sitting at the feet of wise men and women was outstanding. Worshiping with great vigor was amazing. Working with a man with a heart for helping others was what truly touched me.

Friday, October 05, 2007

At the Zoe Conference

I'm at the conference today and Saturday. Randy Harris was really good the three times I heard him, and I'm really looking forward to hearing McLaren again. Good to see Amy Grant (no, not that one) and her husband John.

I'll have more next week.

Thursday, October 04, 2007

YouTube Thursday: Mike Cope Sings the Classics

In honor of the 2007 Zoe Conference starting today, I present a video shown 3 years ago at the 2004 conference: Mike Cope Sings the Classics

If you're at the conference this weekend, look me up.

Wednesday, October 03, 2007

Heroes Wednesday: Lizards

Really interesting title image from HeroesWiki

I enjoyed this episode quite a lot, but it honestly felt like a set up episode, getting everything ready for the rest of the season. We have Bennett/HRG/Noah bringing out Issac Mendez' painting of Kaito Nakamura's death and announcing that he had to find the rest of them (had we seen that painting before?) to Hiro convincing Kenzei to go and rescue the swordsmith.

I liked Parkman's subplot and still do. And I loved the whole interview with Mama Petrelli, from her saying that she wasn't sleeping with Kaito (for a long time...) to her yelling at Matt inside her head. It's always great when Matt's power gets subverted just a little, like when Bennett thought in Japanese last year in "Company Man."

Mohinder's role is still interesting, as opposed to the "vengeful" son role last year. I do wonder how much memory the Hatian left. If it was just what we saw or more or less.

Hiro is still having fun, but again, mainly set up for whatever happens with him, Kenzei, and the swordsmith's daughter. I do wonder if Hiro will be the real hero or if Kenzei will. Also, Kenzei as a regenerator? Did he know or not?

Claire is still very teenager-y which I like a whole lot, especially experimenting, but I've got to say that 1) cutting off the toe and its regeneration was simultaneously as cool and gross as her waking up from the autopsy last season; 2) I hope that she picks it up before Mr. Muggles gets to it; and 3) Hey West, peeking in a girl's window doesn't make you desireable; it makes them want to get a restraining order

I'm liking the Peter plot line as well and I like seeing him use his powers. If only we could have seen a bit more of that stuff in, oh, I don't know... THE SEASON FINALE!!! Sheesh.

I'm definitely missing Niki, DL, and Micah. I really want to see what's going on with them and Sylar. As for Maya and Alejandro... boring! I get that she's contagious in some way with her tears and Alejandro is her antidote, but I don't know if it's the actors or what, but this plot isn't as interesting to me as the others.

Like I said, still an enjoyable episode, but I'm eager to see what the payoff will be to all the setup.

Tuesday, October 02, 2007

Kinsey Questions

Back in July, I did a thing where I "asked" Connor some questions that some other people had been asking their kids. I've been wanting to do the same thing with Kinsey for a while, but I wanted to do it on video. So last night we did. Now, it's 6 minutes long, and maybe only family will want to watch it, but it is completely adorable to hear the answers Kinsey gives to these questions.

Favorite Food:
Favorite color:
Favorite sport:
Favorite person:
Favorite toy:
Favorite thing to do with Daddy:
Favorite thing to do with Mommy:
Favorite song:
Favorite book:
Favorite Movie:
Favorite TV show:
Favorite Outfit:
Favorite thing to do outside:
What do you want to be when you grow up:
Favorite animal:
Favorite thing to do with Kinsey:
Favorite thing to do with Grandparents:
Favorite thing about God:
Favorite thing about Jesus:
Favorite thing about Holy Spirit:
Favorite thing about going to church:
Favorite place to visit:
Biggest fear:

Monday, October 01, 2007

Zoe Conference 2007

So, who's coming to Nashville this week? I'm very much looking forward to hearing Brian McLaren speak again. Whether or not I agree with him (or if some think Zoe is going "liberal" for having speakers like him and Lauren Winner last year), I really enjoy the thinking he's brought to Christianity and always stretches me theologically. I'm looking forward to hearing Randy Harris as well.

(As an aside to people who have no clue what the Zoe Group is about. It is a worship renewal group that started within Churches of Christ about 10 or 11 years ago. Every year they release a CD of music that is distributed throughout many Churches of Christ with music that is used in many worship settings. They also hold conferences with the largest in Nashville in October that focus on worship, leadership, and discipleship. The speakers for the last three years have been Brian McLaren, Leonard Sweet, last year, Lauren Winner, and this year, McLaren is back). It is probably the largest gathering of progressive Churches of Christ in the country, at least in the Southeast. The conference is Thursday, Friday, and Saturday, at Woodmont Hills Church on Franklin Road.)

I'll make a shameless plug and also recommend Doug Sanders' Saturday session called Wholistic Christianity - Living the Christian Life 24/7/365 at 8:30am. Doug used to be the VP of Ice Cream at Purity Daries and left there to become the Director of Ministries at Otter Creek. In doing that, he discovered a heart for ministry to the poor and those in serious need. If you want to hear more about his story, you can do so here. But I know his session will be great.

The other thing I really enjoy about the conference is seeing in person the other people from Blogworld. Last year, I met TCS in person, as well as Amy, and had just a lovely conversation with Nancy French, along with several others, like Jettybetty.

So is anyone else out there coming this year?
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