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Thursday, December 30, 2004

On Vacation

My wife and I celebrated 10 years of marriage this past May. Tomorrow we head to beautiful CanCun Mexico to celebrate. I'm so excited to enjoy the forecasted 90 degree weather and leave behind the rain and snow that is forcasted here in Iowa. You'll have to do some experimenting with other blogs to read next week. Check out my lists on the side. But, when I get back I promise the blogs will resume with better than ever content and some great pics of my vacation.

Tuesday, December 28, 2004

Tabla Rassa

As a pretty big believer in the Tabula Rasa theory I had some pretty big realizations tonight as I found and read the lyrics to my favorite lullaby that my mom used to sing to me when I was a kid.
I never really knew the words, just the melody, but I know it so well that the thought of it brings comfort and memories of mom singing it to me as a young boy.

The name of the song is Two Babes in the Woods. Here are the lyrics to it and a link to here it sung.

Any guesses now as to why I'm not right in the head???
Nothing like a sweet lullaby about kidnapping and child abandonment to write the first words on my blank slate.

Saturday, December 25, 2004

Best of Christmas

Okay, now that we are all at least 5 pounds heaier from all the pies, cookies, ham and green bean caserole, I want to take a survey.
I've tried this once before here and it failed miserably, but I'm feeling a little saucy tonight, so I'm going for it anyway.
  1. What was the best gift you got this year?
  2. What was the best gift you gave this year?
Received - was a clock/radio/cd player/mirror that goes in the shower. I'm so excited about it. I put in my new U2 How to dismantle an atomic bomb CD and took a GREAT shower this morning. Thanks honey!
Given - an outfit for my wife. I hate clothes shopping for her. The whole if it's too big she'll think I think she's that big, but if it's too small she'll think I want her that size and aren't happy with her like she is. In reality I have no idea what size she is and am perfectly happy with her just like she is... Ohh, my head spins thinking of the agony I could cause myself. BUT - I did good this year, took a chance and she loved it! Home Run Big Time!

What's yours??? If you've never posted here, now's your chance.

Thursday, December 23, 2004

Happy Holidays

It's my last day in the office before the holiday festivities begin.


In an ever growing attempt to be politically correct, allow me to be the first to wish you and yours a very merry Christmahanukwanzika.

Wednesday, December 22, 2004

Bah Humbug

This story is a little stale. Maybe a week or so old, but still worthy of comment.

Evidentally the Plano Independent School District in Texas has decided to ban paper plates and napkins which are red and green in color for holiday parites because they symbolize Christmas. Students are only allowed to bring white plates and napkins. (article)

Stupidity never seems to stop amazing me or amusing me.
  • First, I'd like say if the colors red and green are so assimilated with Christianity, the religion they are wanting removed from schools, then I'm suggesting we paint our sanctuary and church bus red and green as soon as possible, people ought to come running to our church and convert as they enter the color scheme of Jesus.
  • Second, I'd like to say, if you can't bring any other color other than white, it seems to me that this group is subliminally pushing a racist agenda. If I were a black, hispanic or asian student at this school, I would feel discriminated against because I can only bring paper products promoting a race that I am not part of. Racism still alive and well in that redneck state.
  • Third, I wonder who's getting a big fat lump of coal in their stocking this Christmas.

Monday, December 20, 2004

4 little words

I've got this little card I carry with me in my planner. It says that I'm able to marry, bury, baptize and give communion to people. Four little words. It comes in handy when I go to the hospital to visit sick people. Mostly it comes in handy to slip the locks on doors if I've forgot my keys.
Of the four, I was batting .250. I'd only served communion until this weekend when I performed my first wedding. Things went great and I actually thought I was pretty good at it.
Tomorrow my average goes up again. I perform my first funeral. I want to do good for the family and comfort them, but none of them went to our church. Only the deceased attended and only a couple of times, but she felt connected to me, so I got the call to do the service. I told the funeral director, after he proceeded to fill me in on the latest gossip of the funeral home industry, that one of my biggest goals is not to come across like a rookie. He laughed at me, probably thinking "rookie". I don't want to make some green horn mistake like trip and fall in the grave. I want things to be proper for the family. They deserve it and should have it.
Sincerity, honesty and compassion are the 3 virtues of a minister during a funeral... I think. There ought to be a 5th little word on my little card. "improvise" With no idea if what I'm doing is right or wrong, I'm so making this up as I go. My new ministry motto... "Fake it til you make it"

Thursday, December 16, 2004

A Classic Cut

Perhaps the Steve Miller Band said it best. "Time keeps on slippin' into the future."

I came to work this morning and realized I hadn't blogged anything since Monday. Sure I've got lots of excuses for it. Busy week, preached last night, bought a house yesterday, finalized the budget (including trimming almost $16k off of it in less than and hour) But hey, who wants to hear excuses right? As my highschool gym teacher used to remind us, "excuses are like armpits, everyone has a couple and they stink" Ahh, Coach Padilla, the formative years of my life are filled with your wisdom. To you I am grateful.

Well to make up for lost time, I'm presenting you with perhaps one of my best blogs ever today.

I'm a huge fan of the mullet. In fact I think the government ought ot institutionalize the beautiful style as our national cut. In respect and honor of this incredible hair style, I'm dedicating this blog to the mullet. Long Live the Mullet, time honored classic that you are!

If you love that pic, check out Mullets Galore Perhaps the most scary site on all of the web.

Monday, December 13, 2004

Uh... can you say backfire?

Read this article (link) which talks about how the pro-abortion movement of the 70's actually could have caused Kerry's defeat in the 2004 election. The article is serious, but the irony of the whole thing is absolutely hilarious.. unless you voted for Kerry, then I'm sorry, but it's still funny.

Not trying to start a whole pro-life / pro-abortion debate [I think those debates are a waste of time anyway]but, you don't see to many episodes on the Animal Planet where the parents repeatedly kill the young and then experience a population boom a few years later. Darwin may have had a point. Natural selection seems to be working today in America.

Thanks for the link (res publica 2004)

These are a few of my most hated things

Raindrops on roses and whiskers on kittens,
Bright copper kettles and warm woolen mittens,
Brown paper packages tied up with strings,
While these are a few of my favorite things, stupid forwarded emails about the latest save the internet whale campaign is not on my list of favorite things.

Got this email (see below) from a friend who wanted me to find out if it was true.
I am gaining in notariety to be able to prove things false on the web. However, I failed at this one.
-Tom Hanks is considdering the part.
- There is such a company as Playtone - actually it's Hanks' production company.
- No one at Playtone could confirm nor deny he was being protested by any group for taking the part. (You should have heard the guy when he realized he was being harrassed on the phone by some pastor from po-dunk Iowa and not some reporter from 20-20. Ha!)

It's obviously a hoax, or very lame grass roots attempt to pursuade Hanks ( a Jewish man) that the Christian community is upset with him, but I can't prove it.

My challenge to you, prove it a hoax if you can... or just make fun of me for being a loser with nothing better to do than track down rumors. By the way, if you want something proven false - forward it to me. mbbarrett@hotmail.com

Are you aware of the following?
Tom Hanks is in talks to star in the movie version of "The Da Vinci Code."
You can do something about this. Send Tom Hanks a message (see below).

"The Da Vinci Code" promotes the following claims:
- Jesus is not God; he was only a man.
- Jesus was married to Mary Magdalene.
- Mary Magdalene is a goddess and should be worshipped.
- Jesus and Mary Magdalene had a daughter.
- The Bible was put together by a pagan Roman emperor.
- The Gospels have been altered to support the claims of Christians.
- Mary Magdalene was directed to establish the Church.
- The Catholic Church is aware of all of these things and, in order to
keep it secret, has resorted to murder.

Here's what some prominent Christian leaders have had to say about "The Da
Vinci Code":
"... for non-believers, it confirms their unbelief. It turns off honest
seekers, and it has confused and disillusioned even many Christians."
--Chuck Colson
"There is a conscious agenda that has been declared in the public square in
Brown's novel-an agenda to revise Christian history and reshape beliefs
Christians have held for years."
-[edited this short because there were way to many quotes to care about]-

Please feel free to use the following sample letter:
Tom Hanks
FAX: 310-394-4466
Playtone Company
1224 Fifth Street
Santa Monica, CA 90401

Dear Mr. Hanks,
"The Da Vinci Code" is filled with inaccuracies and defames Christianity.
It is a project that is not worthy of your talent and stature.
Please say No to this film so that America can continue to hold you in high

Thursday, December 09, 2004

Got scooped

My friend Captain Mac out out scooped me. I have been seriously wanting to blog on my favorite commercials for a couple of weeks and just procrastinating it I guess. Well not the Captain. He did it today about CNN's ads

Anyway, despite the embarrasment of out scoopage, I'll still share mine. - Besides, my favorites are way better than his. Just kidding, but not really - sort of, but seriously.

First is the You and HP. I actually just chose HP over Dell in a pretty serious purchase for the office. Not solely because of this ad, but I got to tell you the song was dancing in my head as I ordered. Plus very creative and since the machine I'm buying is for video editing I gotta know, how did they do that??? Way cool effect.

Second is the Miller Lite You Make the Call commercials, that got totally upstaged by Bud Light's referees replacing Bud wth Miller so they can take the beer for themselves. Ha - still funny to me. Never really cared for the Miller Lite ads, but Bud Lite is pretty funny.

Tuesday, December 07, 2004

What's wrong with this picture?

Read this article today (link) about a contest for the sexiest plumber. Plumbing, while a profession I'm grateful for, is not one I would considder to be sexy.
Cocktail waitress - sexy.
Stewardess - sexy.
Construction worker - sexy.
Associate Pastor - sexy.
Plumbers - uhhh, not exactly.

Aren't they the big fat guys with pants hanging down, showing more crack than Robert Downey Jr's medicine cabinet???

Anyway, loved the picture and wanted to share with all.

Monday, December 06, 2004

How Real Are You?

Here's a great little quiz to see how boned up you are on reality TV. (link)

I used to be a reality buff, but I've let myself slip a little in the last few seasons and it shows. I only got 50% of the questions right.

Knowing the kind of people who read this blog, who's going to be first to get 100% right?

Blue Notes

I am truly amazed at how many people are on some kind of anti-depressant. Of the counselling appointments that I have (maybe 4-6 a month) those to do with anything other than financial counselling almost always involve people taking anti-depressants.

I grew up "old school" about mental disease. My grandma was sent to the padded room for a while when my dad was a kid. We always talked about it in a joking way. "You know your grandma is crazy as a loon" my grandma would joke when something funny happened to her. And no one could ever have a mental disorder. "By golly, you should be able to handle this on your own without the help of anyone. Stand up and be strong, you can do it." The whole Christianity thing didn't help matters either when it became part of my family when I was a kid and my parents got involved in a word church. Their sort of twisted form of spirituality kind of took some of the truth, but left out a lot of it. "You can do all things through Christ who strengthens you" became my mantra whenever I couldn't do something.

Physical illness was different. You get a cold, you take cough syrup. It gets worse, you get a shot. Heart problems, take 5 pills and have surgery. But mental problems, never dealt with the same way. Not sure I ever could figure out why we deal with things differently.

Anyway, point being... Guess I don't have one.

Check for yourself (link) if you should be eating Prozac or whatever the latest drug is.

Thursday, December 02, 2004

U of H

Ever think you wasted your time in college?
Ever truly hate your classes and think this must be Hell?
Ever get those emails advertising $50 degrees from "accredited" universities?

Check this out (link) - (a few crass words and innuendoes, so be warned before you click.)

I'm considdering a major in Elvis-ology.

Thanks John for the link

Wednesday, December 01, 2004

Christmas Cheer

Don't know if you had the chance to watch the lighting of the Rockefeller Plaza Christmas tree last night. Wow - beautiful tree, great Holiday cheer and music galore. I really had a great time watching it with the family. I wish all Christmas lightings would go so well.

Recently, I loaded up my family and went down to the town square for the first annual lighting of the Christmas lights. I thought it would be a great idea for the kids, and Deann loves Christmas, so I'd win some points with her too. What I hadn't planned on was rain, which wouldn't have been bad accept what I also hadn't planned on was the most long winded speakers. The event starts with the local college choir singing a couple of carols. Okay, fine accept the choir is 2 people. Each sang solos. Then a local church barber shop quartet sings a few more. Meanwhile, I'm getting wet and my arms are tired from holding my 2 year old. Then the highlight, my pastor actually spoke and prayed a blessing in less than 3 minutes. Wish the rest could have taken his lead becuase next the mayor decides to ramble on pointlessly for about 10 minutes and then the head of the decorating committee gives the comparison to a lifetime achievement award speech. "I'd like to thank Sara. Is Sara here? Come on up Sarah, give her a big round of applause as she comes. Without Sara none of this would have been possible. That reminds me of a story. 23 years ago Sara and my uncle's dog Rusty were out playing... you remember Rusty the 3 legged dog with the spot. " Oh My God Shut UP! I'm cold, wet, and have two kids I'm about to kill because you won't shut up and flip the stupid lights.

Finally, after 45 minutes of cerimonial dribble, they finally start the count down by announcing that the $1200 project turned into a $25,000 project. (wasted money) and then.... poof, the lights go on and it looked about like the local Moose Lodge hired the town drunk to hang them for 3 cases of Tequilla. What a great experience. Wish you all could have been there.