O Come, O Come, Emmanuel and Shriner’s Hospital

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As part of a recent sermon at National Community Church, a music video of the worship band singing O Come, O Come Emmanuel was screened.  The video, filmed in the cold of night at a barn in Virginia, was the genius of my friend Andy Piscotti who did all the video work for my “story video” that was part of the One Another series.  This Christmas song, along with “Do You Hear What I Hear?”, is the song that has me convinced that time travel – at least backwards – is possible without the aid of a TARDIS, a Delorian, or technology built by Skynet.    Instead of being fully present in a church lobby as the video played, I was in a bed from a long time ago, in a hospital far far away.

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Defining “Success” in light of the alternative…

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What is success?  Is it achieving wealth, power, fame, influence and toys (or any configuration therein)?  In Klingon, the word is “k’plah”.  It’s the only word I know in that language, although I have heard a few others thanks to “Klingon Boggle” on The Big Bang Theory.  The worst time to be confronted with this question is after you have awakened in the dead of night just minutes before the bells of the grandfather clock toll 3.  (I attribute this dread to an over exposure to A Christmas Carol and squarely place the blame at the feet of one Ebeneezer Scrooge; McDuck or otherwise).  Nevertheless, there I was grappling with this question in total darkness at my grandmother’s house in Florida a week ago or so, doing everything I could to ward off various mental images of the Ghost of Christmas Future.

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TV Episodes as Real Life: Meeting Cody

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Last week I blogged about my adventure to Disney Hollywood Studios to ride the upgraded version of the Star Wars ride, Star Tours.  As I was slowly making my way round the park I found myself wondering if I would run into anyone I knew (after it happens to you in Times Square you begin to think it could happen anyplace).  It didn’t quite happen as I expected it to, but rather reminded me of someone I’ll be visiting later this week.

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Star Tours 2: The Fanboy Returns

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In the wake of relinquishing my job and shutting down a Congressional office on Capitol Hill, I travelled to Orlando, FL to be in the wedding of my friends Josh and Terri Shepherd.  After the four day “wedding adventure”, I happened to have a free day in Orlando before meeting my grandma and driving to her house in Naples, FL the next day.  What to do with a free day?  As a Star Wars fanboy there was little choice actually, knowing that the new Star Tours ride was within traveling distance by public transportation.  Resolved to visit Disney Hollywood Studios and check the new Star Wars experience off my bucket list, I hopped on a shuttle to the airport.  In short order the shuttle dropped me off in a parking lot wherein I was to catch a Lynx public transport bus to Magic Kingdom.  When a  bus is the only option available, you take it (and secretly wish there was a Metro system).  I hadn’t realized how much DC has spoiled me in the area of public transport until that day because the Metro really doesn’t stop and buses do.  The bus ride took a little over an hour each way, and since I knew I would be going on rides, I kept the peripherals (books and electronic gadgets) to a minimum and had little to occupy the time.

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Governing is hard…

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In the wake of the election earlier this week, I’ve been thinking some about the question of “what happens now?” as the status quo of the last two years appears to be maintained between the White House, the House of Representatives, and the Senate. I honestly thought that the American people wouldn’t re-elect the President, that things had become difficult enough for many people that they felt something else was needed; I was very wrong. Rather than point fingers, assign blame, or subscribe heavily to the mantra of the news media that Republicans need to “soul search” and become more moderate as a result to be successful, I kept thinking about something else: relationship.

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The Terrible Privledge…

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In the Avengers, Tony Stark has this great conversation with Bruce Banner wherein he explains the function of the miniature arc reactor in his chest, that it was the thing keeping him alive but also what powered his Iron Man armor.  Tony knew that it was a terrible privilege to be him, to be Tony and Iron Man; he accepted it, embraced it, and turned his greatest weakness into what enabled him to be a hero.  Hoping to alter the way that Bruce sees The Incredible Hulk, the billionaire, genius, playboy, philanthropist allows someone else to see him as a bit more human and a little less “larger than life”.

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One Day…

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One day He’s gonna erase the boundary between the Earth and the realm of the Heavenly” – All the Way Alive, The Orange Country Supertones

Two weeks from now, For the Glory, the new album by The OC Supertones, will release; on election day, actually.  Fortunately for me, thanks to helping fund the new album efforts on Kickstarter, I got the album early.  While it’s no Supertones Strike Back, it’s a good release that will grow on me with time.  As I’ve been listening to it, the line cited above from the first track on the album keeps coming back to me.  Maybe it’s because I’m reading C.S. Lewis’s Space Trilogy with a small group right now, maybe it’s because I tend to be a geek of galactic scale, but I love that image.

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Life as an Episode of Touch, Part III

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Sometimes small events in life happen that turn seemingly unconnected events into a noticeable thread or pattern; so it seems to be with my recent travel on metal birds in the sky (or airplanes if you prefer).  I’ve previously written on how sometimes my life seems to be like an episode of the FOX TV show Touch.  It’s a show everyone should watch, as it effectively tackles the nebulous idea of destiny in the small and “insignificant” happenings in life.  This trend that I have noticed keeps happening.

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Burn II: The Notice Strikes back!

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A few weeks ago I wrote about a practice in the show Burn Notice called “sliding cards”.  Sliding cards – I was told – is the technical term for the name and description of characters that often appears on screen in Burn Notice.  This facet of the show often causes me to wonder what my description would be and led me to blog on it.  That post prompted a discussion with one of my good friends where he essentially asked “What would Jesus put there?”

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Death Stars and X-wings: When God doesn’t speak in Hollywood Special Effects

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The Lord said, “Go out and stand on the mountain in the presence of the Lord, for the Lord is about to pass by.”  Then a great and powerful wind tore the mountains apart and shattered the rocks before the Lord, but the Lord was not in the wind. After the wind there was an earthquake, but the Lord was not in the earthquake.  After the earthquake came a fire, but the Lord was not in the fire. And after the fire came a gentle whisper.  When Elijah heard it, he pulled his cloak over his face and went out and stood at the mouth of the cave.  1 Kings 19:11-13

When I attended the Quitter Conference a few weeks ago I came with a secret ambition, a hidden desire known only to a few people, something that I wanted to see happen, something I thought I needed to have happen.  I came into the Quitter conference with high expectations because I was doing something new, stepping out into the unknown.  I wanted, I (thought) needed a “Death Star scaled” epiphany.  I wanted something big to happen; some sort of connection, meeting, telling my story to the right person at the Quitter conference…the right puzzle piece in the right place so that my dream could be taken to the next level and I’d have a direction to pursue in a new way since I will be losing my current job soon.    That didn’t happen.

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