epiphany.

When you said
That I would not
Die but live
And tell what you
Had done

I thought you were
Trying to pull me
Out of a bad place
Just for the sake of
Bringing me alive

But now I get it:
You were saying
“You don’t get to quit
Until you’ve finished
The work I’ve given
You to do
Until I’ve finished
The work I’m doing”

A kick in the butt
And a loving embrace
And resurrection
All at once

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i keep forgetting my own history.

I like watching period dramas, partially because I’m a big fan of Victorian dress. I once wore a hoop skirt for a play in high school and loved it, believe it or not. I have not, however, ever worn a corset. Soon to remedy.

Of course, I look at those and think sometimes, I was born in the wrong era.

And then I remember the following:

1. I’m not a serious feminist, but women’s suffrage is kind of awesome.
2. Had I been born in the 1800s-early 1900s, I wouldn’t have lived in the United States or Europe anyway (duh).
3. And actually, I would have ended up dressing more like this, which, really, I like a lot, too. I kinda want a hanbok (which is what that’s called, and people still wear them for special occasions in Korea), but I have no occasion for wearing one, ever, unless I get invited to a Korean wedding or something.

And then I go back to the movie, and thank God I was born in postmodernity, when we can always reinvent ourselves.

rain, rain, don’t go away…

1. Title comes from “April Showers”, a really old-school Caedmon’s Call song (one of my favorites) and the fact that it is in fact raining right now outside. It’s rather Seattle-ish outside, except for the fact that it’s also kinda muggy and gross (ew). I should totally be doing research for a couple of projects right now, but that is probably the last thing I want to do right now, so instead I’m gonna sit here and write a blog post and drink my iced coffee.

2. I had a job interview today (!) with a library system in the Seattle area (!); they were in town recruiting, and if I pass this round, they’ll pay for me to go up there to do a skills assessment test (!). I think it went well; my interviewers were really pleasant to talk with and seem like they enjoy their jobs a lot, so here’s hoping I get in. *crosses fingers* I am looking around at other places, of course, especially since I have less than five months until I graduate (!!!!). It does make me glad I’m not graduating in May, of course; otherwise, I’d be freaking out a lot more than I am at the moment (which, incidentally, is a lot).

3. I am *finally* caught up with Lost. By the way, Nestor Carbonell (i.e., Richard the immortal guy) earned about a million hotness points during Tuesday’s episode as soon as he opened his mouth and Spanish came out. (If you’re not a Lost watcher, I apologize.)

4. Um, not much else to say. Been grappling with some personal stuff, as is probably appropriate during Lent. Just finished reading Jared Wilson’s Your Jesus is Too Safe, which has the distinction of being the only book I know of that cites both N.T. Wright and Homestar Runner (seriously). Following The Tournament of Books and March Madness (sic ’em, Bears! seriously!). All I’ve got. More to come, maybe. Love y’all.

25 (more) things to do before I go

An addendum:

1. Go deep-sea fishing.
2. Get a full spa treatment with a group of girlfriends.
3. Sort out my miscellaneous minor-but-still-annoying health issues.
4. Be at the finish line when my friend Dave finishes a marathon (no pressure, dude).
5. Run a full marathon myself (!!!).
6. See Bruce Springsteen live.
7. Learn how to actually chop things correctly, because what I do now is more like hack them to pieces.
8. Attend a Catholic mass (which I’ve done before, but I was 10 and wasn’t really paying attention).
9. Learn how to bind books.
10. Learn how to do statistics.
11. Write my life history for my kids.
12. Fly first-class somewhere.
13. Go to TED or Q or SXSW Interactive (…or all three).
14. Throw a pot (as in make it, not literally throw it).
15. Eat caviar.
16. Leave my waiter/waitress a $100 tip.
17. Attend an Eastern Orthodox service.
18. Finish this giant list of project I made a while back.
19. Go to Andrew Peterson’s Behold the Lamb of God concert at the Ryman.
20. Write my will (morbid, but necessary).
21. Be in/start a book club.
22. Grow out my hair really long, then cut it off and give it to Locks of Love.
23. Attend a Passover seder.
24. Can something (tomatoes, jam, something like that) and give it away.
25. Pick someone and write letters–handwritten, in an envelope, with a stamp–every week for a year to them.

have you ever even parked a car before?!

1. Title reference comes from Lost. Which I’m almost caught up with, having pushed through almost four seasons in about two months. I’ve been having very strange dreams involving the characters (or Charlie/Dominic Monaghan, at least).

2. This post at the Rabbit Room outlines pretty much every reason I love the movie Magnolia (and by the way, if you’re not reading The Rabbit Room, it is some good, good stuff over there, and I highly recommend it).

3. Oh, and I just got in to Houston this evening (Tuesday). I am unfortunately going to have to do some homework this week (papers and reading and such), but I’m leaving my evenings and afternoons free if any of you H-town peeps want to hang out.

4. I feel like I have something more to say, but it’s not coming to mind…the past few nights have been pretty sleep-deprived for one reason or another, and my brain might implode any day now from too much Lost, so I might not write anything coherent here until at least tomorrow…

5. By the way, seeing as tomorrow’s St. Patrick’s Day, now is the time when I confess that for a while now I’ve wanted an “Everyone loves an Irish girl” shirt just to throw everyone off. 🙂

a few things:

1. Too much cancer, part 1: I haven’t mentioned him here before, but Michael Spencer is a blogger I’ve followed and admired for a while now. A few months ago he was diagnosed with cancer; in the post linked to above his wife just told us all that he’s been given about six months to a year to live. He’s fifty-three, a husband, a dad, a teacher, a writer, a friend to a lot of people and probably an inspiration/thought-provoker to even more. It seems that he’s at peace with it now, but pray for him in his suffering, and pray for his family and friends, too, if you could, please.

2. Too much cancer, part 2: March 16 starts Matt Chandler’s second, more intense round of chemo, so pray for him and his wife and kids, too.

3. And some of my friends are going through some pretty dark times spiritually and emotionally as well. If I may be honest, I was having one of those last week myself, for one reason or another. It feels like the crap is hitting the fan in a lot of people’s lives, and it’s not easy to carry one another during that. I keep having to remind myself that it is, in fact, a privilege to do so, and that I don’t have to be afraid or ashamed of having people do so for me. It feels like we’re on the brink of something interesting for some reason.

4. On a much, much lighter note, I bought a bike last night. Now, I haven’t ridden a bike in at least 15 years; I took it out for a spin this morning, and now my butt is seriously sore (which I’m sure y’all totally wanted to know…). I have determined that I need to get a hold of an Allen wrench and adjust the seat height, but that’s another story. Anyway, it felt good to be on a bike again, sore butt notwithstanding, and let me also say that it is the girliest shade of pink a bike can be without having a Barbie logo involved somewhere. (Dad, if you’re reading this, I promise to never read a book while riding. I could get away with that when I was eight, but at 25 I hopefully know better than that.)

5. Finally, to leave y’all on a downer again, another Taylor Mali piece, this time one that makes my throat tighten every single time:

addendum (3/9, 1:41 pm): Another downer point: Forgot to mention that the former pastor of Providence Church in Frisco was found dead over the weekend, of what looks like an accidental sleeping pill overdose. Married, two little kids.

it’s also the only place WITH BOOKS!!!

1. On etymology: Do not call common that which God has made holy; they had all things in common; shared, base, low-class; communicate = to share information, but an archaic definition of it is to have sexual intercourse; can’t have community without communication, or having information in common; communion is a rite by which God communicates with us and draws us into the community of the Trinity, intimacy with both Him and with one another. We don’t take communion alone. He draws us common people, the refuse of the world, into Himself. (Did you follow all that?)

2. Congratulations to Kathryn Bigelow for being the first woman to win a Best Director Oscar; I still haven’t seen The Hurt Locker, but I’ve heard it’s a great film and plan to remedy that soon. Is it just me, though, or did anyone else think the ceremonies last night were kinda lame? However, they did serve to remind me how much of an oddball Quentin Tarantino is, and how much I totally love him for it.

3. I may be calling upon some of you soon for help in research; I’m doing a paper on use of social media in religious communities and since I think most of y’all are involved in one or both of those, I might come after you and ask some questions. You have been duly warned.

4. Houstonians, I will be in town sometime next week, depending on whether or not I can get a shift at work covered.

5. Finally, the title today comes from this poem by Taylor Mali, who hasn’t stopped by here in a while. You might want to turn up your speakers, since the sound is kinda quiet, but not too loud, for reasons you will see if you watch:

this is why i bailed out of academia:

“What causes a[n online conversation] to be interesting [enough] to prompt a user to participate? We conjecture that people will participate in conversations when (a) they find the conversation theme interesting (what the previous users are talking about) (b) see comments by people that are well known in the community, or people that they know directly comment (these people are interesting to the user) or (c) observe an engaging dialogue between two or more people (an absorbing back and forth between two people). Intuitively, interesting conversations have an engaging theme with interesting people.”

We needed a 10-page article and a study to tell us this? Really?