We are too inclined to think of law as something merely restrictive - something hemming us in. We sometimes think of law as the opposite of liberty. But this is a false conception...God does not contradict Himself. He did not create man and then, as an afterthough impose upon him a set of arbitrary, irritating, restrictive rules. He made man free...then gave him commandments to keep him free. We cannot break the Ten Commandments. We can only break ourselves against them - or else, by keeping them, rise through them to the fullness of freedom under God. God means us to be free. With divine daring, He gave us the power of choice.Rules help us to make sense of the world. Whether they be national laws, rules of a game, or personal guidelines that we follow it is important that we stick to them. It is through following these rules that we find our greatest freedoms.
Friday, August 29, 2008
Thursday, August 28, 2008
Most of my friends here in Fort Collins will be in school and they won't have time just to hang out. On a side note, I hate that school is back in solely for the reasons of more traffic and fewer parking spaces. I guess that since I'm not in school, I kind of feel left out because everyone will be concentrating on school work. It would really be nice to be back in school. Someday I'll be an enrolled student again.
I was driving down the road the other day and I noticed that some of the leaves on the trees are already changing colors. Not a lot of leaves. Only one or two leaves on one tree along the whole tree lined street. But I noticed. It's only August and the leaves aren't supposed to change yet. I've also noticed that it's getting cooler and that it gets darker earlier every day. I don't like it. I wish it could be summer year round.
Don't get me wrong, fall is a good season too. I love to see the leaves change color in the mountains. It's beautiful. I love playing football on cool Saturday mornings and watching Denver Broncos football on Sunday afternoons. Though those are wonderful fall activities, they don't fill that summer activeness void. Someone should figure out a way to combine Denver Broncos Football with summer time. You can't go wrong combining two great things like that.
There are definitely certain things that have the feel of summer though. Things like songs, barbecues, baseball, ultimate Frisbee, family reunions, swimming, road trips, hiking, and countless other things. I love summer because of all the activities and good summer memories I have. I guess I'll have to let those memories hold me over until next summer.
Sunday, August 24, 2008
After going back to the ticket counter and trying to figure out the best way to get to Las Vegas, we came up with absolutely nothing. There was another flight leaving from Colorado Springs, but that still left us with no way to get to the Colorado Springs Airport. Even if we had made it, we still were not guaranteed a seat. We looked into renting a car to drive down to Colorado Springs but it was just too expensive for the short time that we needed it.
Another couple who also wasn't able to get on the plane because they had standby tickets too asked us if we wanted to car pool with them to Las Vegas. They were from Las Vegas and needed to get back so they could get back to work. They told us they were renting a car and were going to make the 12 hour drive. They asked if we wanted to travel with them and split the cost of the car and of gas. Of course we jumped at the chance because Andrea needed to get to Las Vegas so she could go through the temple.
Words almost escape me as to how to describe the trip. Oh, I've got it. Worst. Road Trip. Ever. We ended up renting a Chevy HHR to make the 12 hour road trip. Not a comfortable car at all. We also didn't leave Fort Collins until about 1:30 pm, so we already had a late start. And then there was just the awkwardness of spending 12 hours in close proximity of complete strangers. Thankfully Ivan & Toni (the other couple) were pretty cool and we all seemed to get along.
By the time we got to Las Vegas it was about 2 am and I was miserable. I don't know who designed the seats in the Chevy HHR, but he was a bad person. I wouldn't even call what we did in the car sitting. Sitting is supposed to be somewhat comfortable. And what we did was so uncomfortable. When we finally stopped, I couldn't get out of the car quick enough. I thought I might lose it. I was so irritated. I was so relieved to get to Andrea's house. A strange bed never felt so good.
Monday, August 18, 2008
Since I got my computer back, I've been putting music on it from the CD's that I own. It's been a fun and kind of a long process, but I finally have stuff to put onto my iPod. Anyway, while putting the music back on my computer I re-discovered that I have a bit of 80's music. This got me thinking about a Top 5 list that I could do. So I chose to do a best female rock artists/bands of the 80's as decided by me. Hope you like it. Comment on what would be in your Top 5 list.
5. The Go-Go's
I'm sure a lot of people think that this group should be higher on the list, and they probably deserve it. But they're number 5 simply because I didn't really have a lot of exposure to them growing up. Pretty much all I knew about them, until recently was that they were fronted by Belinda Carlisle. They do have catchy tunes and I realize that they were somewhat pioneers for other female rockers.
Yeah, I know. A one hit wonder. But have you listened to 99 Luftballoons. I've never heard a foreign language song that is so catchy. Catchy enough for me to try and learn the German words. I haven't had success at it except for knowing the phrase 99 Luftballoons. I have a lot of work ahead of me. The point is that not only was this German song successful, it was almost as successful after she sang it in English. That deserves a nod on this list.
3. Pat Benatar
With hits like "Hit Me With Your Best Shot", "Love Is A Battlefield", "We Belong", and "Invincible (Theme From The Legend of Billie Jean)" how can she not make the list? From 1981 to 1984 she won the Grammy Award for Best Female Rock Vocal Performance and was nominated in 1985, 1986, 1988, and 1989. This woman dominated 80's female rock.
2. Joan Jett
Joan Jet Rocks. Hard. Pure and simple, she rocks hard. When I see her, I think that she would out rock and out perform most of the male rock stars of the 80's. In the excess of the 80's, that's saying something. She was listed on Blender Magazine's 100 greatest guitarists of all time, which is impressive because there was only one other woman on the list.
1. The Bangles
Okay, they might be number one on my list because I used to have a crush on Susana Hoffs. But they have some really good songs too. "Walk Like An Egyptian" is definitely going to be on my Top 5: 80's songs list. They have other good songs too, like "Eternal Flame", "Manic Monday", and "Hazy Shade of Winter". After breaking up for 10 years, they got back together and are still touring, recording, and just rocking out.
Thursday, August 14, 2008
Wednesday, August 13, 2008
In case you still want more Boom-dee-yada fun, here is a 3 minute long live version.
Monday, August 11, 2008
Unless you're awake at 1:00 am. After the opening ceremonies it was just normal TV time for me until I saw a commercial saying that the first events would be starting after the current show I was watching. It made me kind of happy that the Olympics were happening 14 hours away so that I could watch them live. Even if it was at 1:00 am.
The commercial that came on to advertise the games made it seem like they were going to show a basketball game or something exciting right away. I was a little disappointed when the first event that they were showing was Womens Sabre Fencing. I thought to myself, "Really? Fencing? Who does fencing?" Aparently America does fencing. I watched several matches, and to be honest I found them almost comical at first. Probably because I didn't really understand what was going on. Not that I understand it now, but I have a much better idea. I found myself, after a while, actually enjoy the matches. Not something that I would have ever expected. It turns out that I ended up watching the three women that would sweep the medals for Womens Sabre Fencing.
It's funny how the Olympics changes the way one feels about certain sports. It takes a sport that is completely boring at any other time and turns it into an exciting competion. Now I'm not saying that the sports are not exciting, because I'm sure that they are plenty exciting. I'm just saying that I find myself not having much interest in those sports until the Olympic Games. I would never watch Sabre Fencing, Synchornized Diving, Badminton, Rowing, or Air Rifle Shooting or a ton of others without the Olympics. But I find myself excited to watch these competition and it helps me to have a new respect for the athletes.
Saturday, August 9, 2008
But I'm glad I missed those things. Yeah, even the Broncos game. I had a really good time with Andrea at the game. Even though we lost 8 - 3. It was just nice to be able to spend time together and enjoy one another's company. I think the part that I enjoyed the most was actually walking to the ballpark from the car. We parked in kind of a rough neighborhood so we wouldn't have to pay for parking. We ended up having to walk passed a homeless shelter while a bunch of people were milling around outside. It was funny because Andrea's demeanor totally changed. I think that she realized that she was the only white person around. I guess I just find some other peoples discomfort entertaining.
As for the game, it was too bad that we lost. But I do love going to baseball games. There is just something about the atmosphere there. The music over the loud speakers, fan contests for prizes, and singing during the 7th inning stretch. There is almost something nostalgic about going to a baseball game. I noticed quite a few fathers and sons there enjoying the game and I realized that is one of the ways the love of baseball gets passed on from generation to generation. Much in the same way my dad passed along a love of football to me. Although I didn't grow up watching baseball with my dad, I do hope to pass on a love of the game (as well as a love of other sports) to my children.
Friday, August 8, 2008
5. Conan The Barbarian - I remember seeing this movie when I was really young. I don't remember anything really about the movie except that I thought the sword fighting was pretty cool. It wasn't until I got a little older that I really understood and appreciated the movie itself. A story of a child that suffers hardships and who grows up to overcome those hardships. Eventually he has his revenge on those who caused his suffering. Classic.
4. The Never Ending Story - I absolutely loved this movie the first time I saw it. My family used to rent a VCR and videos from the local video store. I remember watching the movie like three times in the 24 hours that we had the equipment. I wanted to be a great warrior like Atreyu. I wanted to have his horse Artax and ride the luck dragon, Falkor. The Gmork, that wolf like monster that serves the Nothing, totally scared me. Such wonderful characters, how could this movie be bad? The only thing I didn't like, and still to this day can't understand, was the name that Bastian gave to the Empress. I know he give her his mothers name and that he shouts it out into the rain, but I have no idea what he says.
3. Better Off Dead - Okay, I'm not really a big John Cusack fan, but this movie is awesome. It's funny and has tons of great one liners. Boy meets girl. Boy and girl start to date. Girls dumps boy for someone more popular. Boy is depressed until he realizes he is better off with out said girl. Boy even finds a cooler and better girl to be with. Plus there are so many funny things that happen from the friend that snorts snow and jell-o trying to get high to the dancing hamburger claymation scene. And the quotes: "I'm sorry your mom blew up Ricky", "It's got raisins in it, you like raisins Lane", and "I've been going to this high school for seven and a half years. I'm no dummy. I know high school girls". So funny.
2. Weird Science - The first of the two John Hughes movies on my list. About two high school geeks trying to fit in and their creation of cyber girl come to life. What's not to love? Maybe I identified with this movie because I was somewhat geeky in high school. I dont' know. But it's another fun story about the main characters actually learning to be themselves. Actually, I'm starting to wonder if there are any 80's movies that don't take place in high school.
1. The Breakfast Club - The best John Hughes movie as far as I'm concerned. I'm not really sure what it is about this movie that I like so much. It seems like everything about the movie seems so memorable. From the characters to the music to the scenes themselves. So much so that even JC Penny has remade some of the scenes for a commercial for a back to school sale. I like how the kids start off being completely different from each other. Each from a different social group all stuck in the same situation and forced to learn how to deal with each other. I think that character development that is seen through out the movie is what I really enjoy.
Honorable Mentions: Top Gun, Ferris Bueller's Day Off, Footloose, Goonies, Teen Wolf, The Secret of My Success, The Karate Kid, Labyrinth, Back To The Future, Brewster's Millions, Adventures In Babysitting, Short Circuit, Big, Over The Top
Thursday, August 7, 2008
I've also been reading up a lot on the Internet about this upcoming football season, especially (you guessed it) the Denver Broncos. They started up training camp a couple of weeks ago. They have practices that are open to the public everyday that I really want to go to. Unfortunately gas costs way too much just to go see a practice. Actually gas costs way too much to even go to a game.
The Denver Post, Rocky Mountain News, Yahoo Sports, and Fox Sports all talk about the improvements that Denver has made to their team this year. I'm really excited to see how Selvin Young does as the featured running back and too see the new linebacker set up. I'm hoping that Brandon Marshall can be nearly as productive this year as he was last year, even though he has a 3 game suspension. Jay Cutler should be a lot more productive now that he better understands the offense and has his diabetes under control. Champ Bailey and Dre Bly make up a formidable cornerback duo.
I think this year looks very promising. I don't know if they can beat the Chargers for the AFC West division. But I feel confident that they can at least get a Wild Card spot and make it into the playoffs. My prediction is that the Broncos will go at least 10-6. Hopefully they can do even better and make it past the first round in the playoffs.
Monday, August 4, 2008
While he was doing this, I couldn't help but think about my mission and about what it was like to come home. I served my mission in San Antonio Texas from December 1996 to December 1998. It's hard to believe that it's been almost ten years since I came home. Crazy how time flies. The last day in my area was memorable, not because of who we taught, but because of how less effective it was. The crank arm on my companions bike broke and so we ended up having to walk everywhere. Fun last day in the mission field. The next day was spent in the mission office waiting as the mission president gave us our exit interviews.
The most memorable part of finishing my mission was coming home. After spending the night at the assistants apartment we were taken to the airport to catch our plane. No fanfare or anything. I was dropped off at the terminal and was left to myself for the first time in two years. I went to the gate and found out I had too many bags to be checked in without being charged an additional fee. Being a missionary I had no money and was trying to figure out how I was going to get everything home. I must have had a look of utter panic on my face because the airline worker let me check all my baggage and told me there was no charge. Talk about relief.
I don't remember much of the flight home. It must be my old age. Basically I remember running from one end of the Denver airport to the other so that I could catch my connecting flight back to Montrose. Not even enough time to find a restroom.
After landing back in Montrose, it seemed like it took forever for everyone to get off of the plane. Standing there I was super anxious. I'm not sure why though. I was excited to see my family and friends that I hadn't seen in two years, but for some reason I felt anxious. I wondered to myself how different things would be. Walking into the terminal and seeing all of my family and lots of friends there had an profound effect on me. I saw all of those people and immediately started crying. I was amazed at the love that I felt from them.
Coming home was a wonderful and happy experience but hard as well. I was no longer a missionary and wasn't sure that I knew how to be normal anymore. I look back on that day with fond memories.
So I decided this morning to look up what an ISTJ personality is and if I really fit into the category. Looking online I found this statement about ISTJ's.
Introverted Sensing Thinking Judging (ISTJ)
ISTJs are often called inspectors. They have a keen sense of right and wrong, especially in their area of interest and/or responsibility. They are noted for devotion to duty. Punctuality is a watchword of the ISTJ. The secretary, clerk, or business(wo)man by whom others set their clocks is likely to be an ISTJ.
As do other Introverted Thinkers, ISTJs often give the initial impression of being aloof and perhaps somewhat cold. Effusive expression of emotional warmth is not something that ISTJs do without considerable energy loss.
ISTJs are most at home with "just the facts, Ma'am." They seem to perform at highest efficiency when employing a step-by-step approach. Once a new procedure has proven itself (i.e., has been shown "to work,") the ISTJ can be depended upon to carry it through, even at the expense of their own health.
ISTJs are easily frustrated by the inconsistencies of others, especially when the second parties don't keep their commitments. But they usually keep their feelings to themselves unless they are asked. And when asked, they don't mince words. Truth wins out over tact. The grim determination of the ISTJ vindicates itself in officiation of sports events, judiciary functions, or an other situation which requires making tough calls and sticking to them.
His SJ orientation draws the ISTJ into the service of established institutions. Home, social clubs, government, schools, the military, churches -- these are the bastions of the SJ. "We've always done it this way" is often reason enough for many ISTJs. Threats to time-honored traditions or established organizations (e.g., a "run" on the bank) are the undoing of SJs, and are to be fought at all costs.
Is this really the type of person that I am? I do see some aspects of myself in this description, but do I fit it to a tee? Am I a text book ISTJ? What do you think? What kind of personality are you? You can take a personality test here. It's not the same one that I took last night. But I did take it and it also said that I am an ISTJ.
Friday, August 1, 2008
I've spent the last couple of nights cleaning and organizing it. Mostly between the hours of 11 pm and 3 am. Why? Because I'm not as lame as you would think. I try to go out and be social, so when I would arrive home at 11 pm, it was time to get to work.
Talk about junk. I'm not sure where or when I accumulated so many things. When I moved to here to Fort Collins, I could fit my entire life in the back of my Blazer. Not so much anymore. Since living here I've accumulated a queen size bed, a couch, a recliner, roll top desk, TV stand, and several book shelves. As I decided to clean up all the clutter that was my room I also came to the realization that I have a lot of papers. Papers from church, old credit card statements, junk mail, etc. Why do I keep all of that stuff? I don't think I keep it because I like having it. I think it's more of a 'I'll just put it down here on the desk' type of thing, and then I just forget about it until I have a huge stack of junk. I wonder if anyone else does that, or if it's just me.
Now everything is cleaned up in my room. And by clean, I mean organized. It's a really good feeling. Now the trick is to keep it like that. Maybe I should dedicate Saturday mornings to make sure that everything stays in it's place. I guess we'll see how that works out.