Friday, October 24, 2008

Random Update

Random update of events... cuz you needed to know...

1. you may have noticed (or not) some subtle updates to the blog design. I've added to the LEFT COLUMN more 'Listening To' images as well as what i'm 'Reading' as of late and a few images and links to recent 'Netflix' rentals (with brief description and rating).

Also, i organized my links and put all text related/random info in the RIGHT COLUMN.

headers are embossed in black, now, too. I suppose other subtle updates will be made in the near future.

2. if you don't know, i'm a Youth Director in northeast Ohio. we call our group the Alien Uth (hard sounding 'U' as in 'Youth'). We recently created a new website that i keep updated quite frequently. Check it out:

Lots of cool stuff there... podcasts, music related reviews, devotionals, events, videos, etc. check it out.

3. I recenty checked out Hot Fuzz from the library. Talk about a man's movie! one of the few cop-driven movies to come out of England - it stars Simon Pegg and was created by the same team that did Shaun of the Dead. I thouroghly enjoyed it... watched it in high def with headphones on - cuz my wife didn't want to watch it or hear it.

It's got a good story... good comedic elements... good acting... good action... and some blood, too. Well made. If you are a guy - you need to see it... but your wife may not want to.

4. I recently wrapped up my first season as soccer coach of my sons U-6 team. Although we don't technically keep score in this league - my team, the Jaguar Cats, finished the season really well. We got a lucky draw in the draft and happened to have a lot of the best players and the best overall team.

I really enjoyed it and now have the itch to coach some more. I would love to keep the same team together next year as we'll all move up to U-8. I know that is wishful thinking. But it was a great e

The team excelled at shielding the ball and keeping pressure on the opponents defense - but their favorite thing in the world was yelling their cheer before each game...

1...2...3...Go Jaguar Cats!

5. last - but not least... i haven't formally mentioned this on the blog - but my wife and i are expecting baby #3 sometime in the spring. We are excited and God truly has blessed us. Jen is 12 weeks along. Our kids and the youth girls are super excited!

read more about it here...

Wednesday, October 22, 2008

Lazy Eye (an experiment in free expression)

notes related to the song
Lazy Eye - Silversun Pickups

The other day, i was in Starbucks, and I had my iTunes on shuffle when one of my favorite songs of the moment came on, Lazy Eye by the Silversun Pickups. as i listened to the opening guitar riff, i opened up Word and decided to type down whatever thoughts came to mind as i listened. I’ve done this before a time or two… i call it FREE EXPRESSION. i find that Free Expression helps me connect with my inner being and as a result - i often write down things that inspire me. it can definately be a time for me to connect with God. (i’ve posted my Lazy Eye-inspired thoughts below)

At Coffee Talk (a youth gathering that meets every 6 weeks as part of our youth ministry) on Sunday, October 19th, the Senior High group talked about ways in which we can connect with God in the midst of our busy lives. At the end, i played this song - and asked them to free their minds and just allow God to speak to them - not necessarily through the lyric - but through the rhythms.

(i challenge you to try this with any song) thoughts

FREE EXPRESSION… from 10.10.08


Thinking that someday things will be perfect. It never seems to happen. Or does it? Have i missed it? Have I missed the perfection? has my lazy eye – my imperfection got the best of me? Or has my perception of perfection changed?

Wanting silence. Its too loud. Too much chaos. To many distractions… but I like it… deep down I do. Sadly I do. But really – I crave silence. A time to be alone with my thoughts. But no time.

So I move on.

The music plays. The rhythms come and go. I miss the beat. Feel like I am missing out on something greater. I want to be a part of something greater. I really do.

Gotta get my chance. Gott move.

But the song continues without me. Is it possible for the song to lead to silence? That is backwards, it would seem. The rhythm would lead to more rhythm, no? or is it possible for the rhythm to lead to peace. Can rhythm be a part of my silence?

Like is shawshank redemption? Is the music in my heart and mind? Is that the real rhythm I crave? A rhythm found in the slilence? That rthym giving off hope? Hope that there is something better… something majestic out there for me to encounter?

Where does that hope come from, I need to ask.

Lost in the feedbck of guitars. Symbolic of my life. Lost in the feedback and chaos of life.

Kinda like being lost…. Deep down I hope it will lead me somewhere… out of the darkness of the forest… out of the trees to a green patch of terrain – filled with lilies and beautiful flowers.

That is the hope of rhythm that I crave.

God is there, I feel it.

(notes – free expression while listening to Lazy Eye – by the Silversun Pickups – 9:46am – oct 10, 2008 – starbucks @ washington square.)

Friday, October 17, 2008

Zidane: attentive to more than the game

this is a clip from the documentary film Zidane: A 21st Century Portrait.

as an avid soccer fan and a former player (and now coach) i have always appreciated the art of the game. soccer or futball has been referred to as the 'beautiful game'.

Zidane: A 21st Century Portrait was filmed in real time with 17 synchronized cameras - following every move of Zinedine Zidane - the World & Euro Cup champion player from France.

I have yet to see this film in its entirety - as it has not been released on DVD in America yet. I hope that one day it does. But this clip from YouTube is beautiful to me for many reasons.

for one, it is neat to see how aware he is as he plays... how things are intensified... how immersed he is as he plays. His keen awareness says a lot about the human condition, i think - and what we are capable of.

i think his awareness to the game and his surroundings is a distinct parallel to one's potential awareness to the movement of the Spirit around them each and every day. Are you aware?


tell me what you think.


post script: i forgot to mention that Mogwai did the soundtrack to the film - and it is just as beautiful. (i got it from eMusic a lot cheaper than amazon)

also - here is the trailer to the film:

Thursday, October 09, 2008

In Rainbows (1 year later)

it's been a year since Radiohead did something that to my knowledge had never been done. In Rainbows was available to download - for a fee of whatever the consumer wanted to pay. i don't know how many people downloaded it at the time and i don't know how much money they made - but i'm guessing it was enough.

the album was a breath of fresh air in a time when much in the music world had gone stale.

it wasn't necessarily the best thing ever - but the approach that Radiohead took was sheer genius. it made the listener important again... like they were part of the band or something.

this was made evident when Radiohead released 6 different stems of the song Nude and then Reckoner available for purchase on iTunes - so that the song could be remixed by one and all. for Mac users - GarageBand files of the songs were part of the deal - so that the remixer could literally take apart every segment of the song and rearange it.

i blogged about my first reaction to In Rainbows about a year ago. my reaction today is much the same.

it's been my most played album (by far) over the past year - some songs from the album have been played on iTunes over 65 times.

I can't wait to see what comes next from Radiohead.

Tuesday, October 07, 2008

on an island of musings and lyric... a song abounds.

i've been waiting
i've been waiting for this moment all my life
but it's not quite right

It is now time to make it unclear
To write off lines that don't make sense

Strobe lights and blown speakers
Fireworks and hurricanes
I'm not here
This isn't happening

it's all meaningless
all my life and labor is foolish
and now i don't have a reason anymore

Get sick, get well
Hang around a ink well
Ring bell, hard to tell
If anything is goin' to sell

I know what you mean,

when you want to run to meet the world,

intentions may not carry you far.

Small planes are here

but they never leave my room at all,

they don’t make it through,

they don’t make it out.

I need a place
That's hidden in the deep
Where lonely angels sing you to your sleep
Though all the world is broken

Twenty-five miles or thousands of miles,

when am I going to leave here?

Wednesday, October 01, 2008

because Bob Dylan had something to say 45 years ago...

A Hard Rain's A-Gonna Fall

Oh, where have you been, my blue-eyed son?
Oh, where have you been, my darling young one?
I've stumbled on the side of twelve misty mountains,
I've walked and I've crawled on six crooked highways,
I've stepped in the middle of seven sad forests,
I've been out in front of a dozen dead oceans,
I've been ten thousand miles in the mouth of a graveyard,
And it's a hard, and it's a hard, it's a hard, and it's a hard,
And it's a hard rain's a-gonna fall.

Oh, what did you see, my blue-eyed son?
Oh, what did you see, my darling young one?
I saw a newborn baby with wild wolves all around it
I saw a highway of diamonds with nobody on it,
I saw a black branch with blood that kept drippin',
I saw a room full of men with their hammers a-bleedin',
I saw a white ladder all covered with water,
I saw ten thousand talkers whose tongues were all broken,
I saw guns and sharp swords in the hands of young children,
And it's a hard, and it's a hard, it's a hard, it's a hard,
And it's a hard rain's a-gonna fall.

And what did you hear, my blue-eyed son?
And what did you hear, my darling young one?
I heard the sound of a thunder, it roared out a warnin',
Heard the roar of a wave that could drown the whole world,
Heard one hundred drummers whose hands were a-blazin',
Heard ten thousand whisperin' and nobody listenin',
Heard one person starve, I heard many people laughin',
Heard the song of a poet who died in the gutter,
Heard the sound of a clown who cried in the alley,
And it's a hard, and it's a hard, it's a hard, it's a hard,
And it's a hard rain's a-gonna fall.

Oh, who did you meet, my blue-eyed son?
Who did you meet, my darling young one?
I met a young child beside a dead pony,
I met a white man who walked a black dog,
I met a young woman whose body was burning,
I met a young girl, she gave me a rainbow,
I met one man who was wounded in love,
I met another man who was wounded with hatred,
And it's a hard, it's a hard, it's a hard, it's a hard,
It's a hard rain's a-gonna fall.

Oh, what'll you do now, my blue-eyed son?
Oh, what'll you do now, my darling young one?
I'm a-goin' back out 'fore the rain starts a-fallin',
I'll walk to the depths of the deepest black forest,
Where the people are many and their hands are all empty,
Where the pellets of poison are flooding their waters,
Where the home in the valley meets the damp dirty prison,
Where the executioner's face is always well hidden,
Where hunger is ugly, where souls are forgotten,
Where black is the color, where none is the number,
And I'll tell it and think it and speak it and breathe it,
And reflect it from the mountain so all souls can see it,
Then I'll stand on the ocean until I start sinkin',
But I'll know my song well before I start singin',
And it's a hard, it's a hard, it's a hard, it's a hard,
It's a hard rain's a-gonna fall.

Copyright ©1963; renewed 1991 Special Rider Music