Monday, February 27, 2006

I got nothin'...

Yep. Nothing. I should be reading for class, but I cannot seem to focus on it. I am Jack's lack of motivation. It's stuff I've read before, so should I fail to read it again by 6:30pm tomorrow, I'll probably be okay. Speaking of class, I spent a while today writing a paper about my vision of youth ministry as interpreted through a metaphor. It was an interesting process. I eventually settled on youth ministry as an orchestra, which was an okay idea, I suppose. But writing the paper was a great experience (and how often can I say that about writing a paper?) and allowed me to really think about what I envision for my youth ministry. I did a similar project last semester, but I had to tweak the vision a bit to make it fit in with the rest of the paper.

Anyway, it got me thinking about what I want to do with my life. I've got all kinds of ideas, ranging from teaching to going into the music biz. I want to do so many things. I want to be a rock star. I want to teach. I want to start my own record label. I want to start a youth-oriented club. I want to do this and that, yadda yadda. Ideas that may be ridiculous, ideas that may be brilliant. But none of that is really important. I need to figure out not what I want to do, but rather what I should do. Someone very wise once told me, "It's not a matter of finding what you want to do with your life, what job you're supposed to have. It's about your relationship with God." That makes some sense to me. But I want a convergence of the two. I want to find a vocation that enhances my relationship with God while allowing me to help youth do the same. I think that's a noble desire- to have what I want to do be in line with what I should do. Now it's about figuring that out.

Enough metaphysical rambling.

On a practical level, I need to find a job for the summer, so I can start paying off the 'Blazer. I'd really love to work at Briarlake over the summer, maybe working with the youth group. But I'd even work in the office or whatever they needed, just so I can get really acquainted with the church as a whole. Whatever it is, I gotta make some money, that's for sure. I really enjoy Briarlake- I really like the services there, especially the music. I'm actually meeting with Alfred Burgess, the student minister, tomorrow to talk about doing my Con Ed (for you non-Candler people, that's like my fieldwork/on the job training) there next year. I talked to Tommy, the lead pastor, and he seemed really enthused about it. So, I think that'll be an awesome experience, assuming we can work it all out. I've been praying about it for a while now.


The music blog is now up and running, complete with the initial entry. I chose Project 86's "Wordsmith Legacy" since it is the namesake of the new blog. I think it's appropriate. I'm already mentally compiling a list of songs at which to look. Ideally I'll bring in a wide variety of music to analyze. I think the first one went well. Hopefully people will take a look at it (not-so-subtle proverbial "hint-hint, wink-wink, nudge-nudge" if you know what I'm saying). Comment, disagree, complain, provide alternate views, agree, whatever. I'm looking for it all. You don't even have to like the type of music. It's more a lyrical look than anything.

Enough shameless self-promotion.

I think that's about all I have to say for now. Oh, I discovered a new website recently. If you like video games, or web comics, or web comics about video games, check out: It's pretty funny. Occasionally a bit foul-mouthed, but hey, aren't we all at times? Thanks to Amy for enlightening me as to this comedic delicacy.

That is all.

Je suis le roi de fromage.


Saturday, February 25, 2006

On Music, Lyrics, and Meaning

It's been a few days since the last update. Translation: nothing very interesting has transpired. Class. Read. Write. Sleep. Eat. Work. So, rather uneventful.

Went to dinner with a couple of friends last night. Watched "The Village" and "Mighty Ducks 3" which is an interesting dichotomy. Watched the UK game this afternoon with the only other Kentuckian I know here. That was I guess as good a loss as I could reasonably imagine. They played well and had a shot to win it. But they didn't. C'est la vie, n'est-ce pas? Just got back from dinner with a couple friends, and now I'm updating. Translation: my life is not very interesting. I'm surprisingly okay with that.

But, I've been looking for a productive outlet for my boredom as of late. I've seen all my movies, and I can't really buy more right now- the fundage is going toward the new ride. I'm too tired of reading for class to read much for fun. So I've been spending a lot of time here, emptying my mind into the ether.

In that vein, I've decided to start a separate blog to cover one of my other significant interests: music. Namely, lyrics and meaning, or at least what they mean to me. You can find it at:

The title is taken, appropriately, from a song title from one of my favorite bands: Project 86. The song "Wordsmith Legacy" is on their newest album "...And The Rest Will Follow." If you like exquisitely sculpted music and lyrics in the hardcore manner, this is a band you need to check out. They rock. Hard.

Anyway, this new blog will be where one may find my take on artists, albums and songs, as well as anything else related to the music industry that peaks my interest. I've been writing songs for the past few years, keeping them pretty much to myself. Maybe I'll get really brave and post and discuss them on this new blog. Most of them are rather personal, and would probably need some explanation for them to make the most sense. We'll see about that. I've been interested in the music business for many years now, and one of my career goals is to work in the biz, at least for a while. I'd eventually like to open my own record label. That's another story. Back to the new blog...the plan is to post some lyrics and follow them with my viewpoint. Please feel free to comment with your own insights. That's a big part of why I'm doing this. And continue to comment here on the rest of my mundane but wonderful existence.

I suppose I should get started. But what song should be the first to go up? That merits some thought...

Tuesday, February 21, 2006

My new toy...*cue schoolgirl-esque giggle*

This is my new baby...
It's a 2001 Chevy Blazer, dark blue in color, custom leather interior, power everything, sunroof, 4x4, cd player, power and heated seats, Onstar*, more buttons than I know what to do with. It has the Trailblazer package, which is why it has all the gadgets. They only made this package (which was a forerunner to the 2002 Trailblazer) for a short while. So, it's somewhat rare. It is essentially a top of the line Blazer with features that were transfered into the Trailblazer namesake. Here's another view:

I'm planning on doing some slight modifications. It needs some things to really make it stand out and draw attention to it's awesomness. I'm thinking either tube running boards or rocker bars, grille guard, chrome fender trim, chrome door handles all around, billet grille, fog lights, some serious window tinting, rear spoiler, new front air dam. Some custom wheels eventually. I'm sort of considering installing a DVD player. And that's just the "looks."I haven't even considered what I'm going to do to the perfomance part. I'm thinking I need some more horses...

Here's part of the leather. This insignia is on each of the headrests:

If it did not look so good, I'd definitely replace the headrests with ones that have a DVD player installed. But I really like the leather and its highlights. So, maybe the DVD player can mount to the roof and flip down.

So, this is what will probably be occupying a great deal of my free time in the upcoming months, as I first figure out what all I want to do to it, and also how I'm going to pay for it all. I need to get a job now something serious...

Weekend Update...complete with report card and kung-fu grip

So, I'm rather excited at the moment. Before I get to why, here's what happened this weekend.

My trip started off somewhat crappily, as I left Thursday evening after 4.5 hours of class. I was tired. Loaded up the Corolla and sent its four cylinders of fury northward. Playlist for the trip home, in case anyone wants to know what music I listened to on this road trip:
  • Thrice- Vhiessu
  • Mixtape of assorted raptastic goodness
  • Relient K- Mmhmm
  • Mixtape of quasi-angry rock
  • Kids in the Way- Apparitions of Melody
  • Gorillaz- Demon Days
  • DMB- Everyday
Got home at about 1 am. Went to bed. Friday was uneventful, just hanging out with the family. Friday night we went bowling with our church league. I ended up substituting for someone who was absent. I bowled the worst 3-game series I can remember. Never broke 100. It was bad. Weekend rating about a C at this point.

Got up Saturday morning, feeling rather good. I had planned on spending my entire Saturday at Transylvania University, visiting all my Transy people. About a mile from my house, I hit a patch of snowy-icy destruction and hit a guardrail. No amount of damage to me. Unknown amount of damage to my car. Turned around and went back home to examine the damage. Busted bumper, partially shattered headlight, dented front and rear quarter panels. Essentially, a couple thousand dollars of damage. Those of you who know me, know my car should I say this...hmmm "seen better days." Called the parents and told them. They took a look at it. Decision: possibly unsafe to drive. Plans to visit Transy: shattered like the dreams of small children. Spent the rest of the day discussing options with parents and looking around for a new ride. Test drove some things, but nothing fantastic. Weekend grade: F.

Sunday, went to church. Had dinner with the family. Sat around. Then got inspired and went to Transy on a whim. Visited my "wife" (fulfilling my marital duties so to speak...giggity, giggity, giggity. Alright.), her roomie (and my long-time friend), some of my fraternity brothers, friends, etc. (in no particular order- please, no one be offended...haha.) Finally able to eat some quality pizza, finally able to see my Transy people (just not for long enough). Weekend steadily improving. Still no decision about how I'm getting back to Atlanta. Or my status as the owner of a functional vehicle. Weekend grade: B-.

Monday, got up and had a strategy session with the 'rents. Mom would man the phones and find out about insurance stuff, rental cars, etc. Dad and I would go looking for potential suitors (cars, not people, silly.). We decided to try Lawrenceburg, KY, first, and then head to Lex Vegas. On the outskirts of Lawrenceburg was a small dealership. We pulled in and I saw several interesting vehicles, including a 2002 Lexus RX330. Cried because I'm quasi-broke. Not really.

Then, I spotted her. She was beautiful. The heavens rang out in an immaculate chorus. A 2001 Chevy Blazer with the Trailblazer package. I examined her, looking for flaws I knew would ruin my ability to purchase said beauty. Condition of vehicle: excellent. Price: manageable. Hmm....could it be? Oh yeah. I bought it. I am now the proud owner of a 2001 Chevy Blazer/Trailblazer/big old pile of awesome. For more info, see the next post. Weekend final grade: A+.

Got up this morning and drove my new toy back to Atlanta. I am pleased. My weekend went from bad to worse to incredible. I was able to accomplish everything I intended: see the fam, celebrate Dad's birthday, visit some friends, eat some Slice of Chicago pizza, and some I never imagined: having a wreck, buying a car. Overall, an awesome weekend.

Now, I'm back in the ATL with a new ride just waiting to be "pimped" as the current parlance goes. I'm already making plans...

Thursday, February 16, 2006

You Can't Go Home Again...

You know, I'm not sure what I think of that statement. You can go home again. It's just that home is not the same.

For example, I am leaving Thursday evening after class to drive home. Dad's 49th birthday is on Tuesday. I have class so I can't be there on the actual day, hence the weekend sojourn back to My Old Kentucky Home. Gonna go see the family, go to church, etc. But I'm rather excited about visiting my people in Lex Vegas on Saturday. So y'all best be ready. Of course, none of you read this. I just started it today (well technically yesterday, it is about 1:00am).

Going home now isn't really going home anymore. I have an apartment here. I pay rent here. This is where I live- peace up, A-Town down. Now, going "home" is really going to the location formerly known as home. Cue Prince-esque symbol. Anyway, I'm not sure what I'm getting at here. I just spent the past hour and a half or so talking to some friends about Transy. Really, I was just bragging. Good natured bragging of course. For all it's flaws, Transy is an awesome place. I got to enlighten these friends on topics ranging from the time I knocked myself out in the midst of the warzone that was 1st Clay, to sincerely missing my fraternity brothers, and many things in between. I'm usually not one to just open up and yak about my past, but tonight it just felt right to do so. So I did. We sat around reminiscing about our respective colleges, which brought back a lot of good memories.

All of this got me thinking: I miss Transy more than I thought I would. This place is good, don't get me wrong. I like it here, I have friends here, and this is definitely where I am supposed to be, but Transy was the place where I always felt the most comfortable. There's no place like Transy, and there are no people like Transy people. Transy is home.

And now, I get to go back and visit. For that, I am grateful. I'm looking forward to hiking up to 4th Davis and feeling "this is where I belong." I don't feel that anywhere else (of course, excluding my actual home with my family- that's an entirely different, but good, feeling).

Tomorrow, I am heading for home. Saturday, I'll be there.

Wednesday, February 15, 2006

Okay, kids, let's talk about Valentine's Day...

Ahh Valentine's Day...that most lovely of holidays where we all express our love and affection for our significant others.

You know what? Why do we need a day to do this? Honestly? I blame Hallmark, who is definitely operating in conjunction with the chocolate and flower industries.

You know who else I blame? Men. Yes. That's right. I blame my gender. If we weren't (typically) so oblivious to what's going on around us, we wouldn't have to be subject to the pressure of V-Day. And trust me ladies, for guys V-Day is like preparing for war. You have to arm yourself (see: candy/flowers/etc.), develop a strategy (dinner plans, whatever), and then fight hard to simply survive (not tick off your mate). If you don't, well, let's just say it's not fun times.

So, now that I know you are all begging for more of my's what I think we, as men, should do.

If we hate the pressure and build up of V-day so much, why not do smaller things throughout the year? Honestly, take out the trash a few times, call her randomly and tell her how you feel, send her a letter (yeah, those things you actually write out and put in the mail. You know they still send those things, right?), etc. and you'll be pure money, man. I think if we were all just a little more attentive, then if we were to maybe fail a little bit on Valentine's Day, we would not be casualties of this tragic war. Instead, we would have built up some credit or leverage or however you want to see it. You mess up on Valentine's Day? Just remind her of the time you sent her that (crappy) poem you wrote just for her. Or the times you called her for no reason. There, now instead of being executed by the firing squad (read: her when she tells her friends how you botched Valentine's day), you'll have done some damage control. Maybe you'll just lose a finger or something.

That is all.

For now...

And so it begins...

I think it may be time. Time to simply say whatever is on my mind. So that's what I plan on doing here. It may be utterly ridiculous, or entirely serious. Who knows? I don't. I'm going to try to just let all this come out, just let it flow from mind to fingers to the realm of "the 'Net." We'll see how that works out.

Worse case scenario, I'll type this stuff and no one will read it. Maybe that's not all that bad. Yeah, probably not. So, real worst case scenario, I'll post something that stirs up some mysterious and elusive character from my past who hunts me down and turns me into his or her own second skin, Buffalo-Bill style. IT PUTS THE LOTION ON THE SKIN! Yeah, that's probably the worst case.

Best case scenario, I change the world. For the better, obviously. Yeah, that's probably as good as it could get.

So...this is it. Time for it all to begin. I click "publish," and it's all out there. Awesome. I am Jack's wavering indecision.


Wake, dead man, wake...