Monday, October 28, 2013

Random Thoughts 10/28/13

  • Happy half-birthday, Elijah!  Today is Elijah's 9-and-one-half birthday.  What is the significance?  When Brennan was 9 we decided he was getting too old to have an 8pm bedtime.  But instead of making the decision look completely arbitrary, we said he had to wait until he was 9-1/2 before he could stay up until 10pm.  A year later the same rule applied to Tanner and now it's Eli's turn.  Eli has been counting down the days.
  • Shannon offered to bake him half a cake.
  • The men's retreat at Mission Lake Christian Camp is this weekend.  Preregister here.
  • Even if you don't preregister, letting me know in advance is really helpful for planning our meals and such.
  • The Chiefs are 8-0 and #1 in the NFL.  Yeah, I saw that coming. 
  • The NFL trade deadline is tomorrow.  Any chance the Chiefs will trade for an offensive weapon?  There seems to be a lot of buzz for getting Tony Gonzalez back from Atlanta, but I'm not sure that would actually make a difference (other than creating a lot of fan excitement).
  • Funniest thing I've seen on Fox News lately: Greg Gutfeld's name for Obamacare, Obama-apocalypso-care-ageddon…gate!!!
  • It looks like the KU starting lineup is falling into place:  (transfer from Memphis) senior forward Tarik Black, junior point guard Naadir Tharpe, sophomore forward (from Wichita) Perry Ellis, freshman guard (and our best kept secret… shhhhh) Wayne Seldon, and freshman guard (and #1 recruit in the nation) Andrew Wiggins.  Both freshmen are virtually certain one-and-done players; Wiggins could break his leg, miss the season, and still get drafted by the NBA based on his potential alone.

Friday, October 25, 2013

Penguins in KC!

We got up early this morning and went to the zoo for the opening of the penguin exhibit. As Friends of the Zoo members we were allowed in early, found a spot 20 feet from the ribbon cutting ceremony, and were in the first hundred or so to make it in the building.

The exhibit is first class, very similar to the one in Omaha, and it is sure to be a popular destination on a hot summer day.

My kids all loved it.

Friday, October 18, 2013

Random Thoughts 10/18/13

  • I hate being away from blogging for more than a day a two; a week and a half is unacceptable.  But throw in a funeral, some extra counseling, a good book, a migraine or two and other miscellaneous good and/or bad busyness and voila… a week is gone!  But becoming a better writer requires both good reading and practice, practice, practice.
  • November 1 and 2 is the men's retreat at Mission Lake Christian Camp.  Be there!
  • Our national debt jumped over $300 billion in one day and now tops a record $17 trillion.  We are hopelessly addicted to giving ourselves stuff, promising that our grandchildren will pay the bill.  The old quote goes, "A democracy cannot exist as a permanent form of government. It can only exist until the majority discovers it can vote itself largess out of the public treasury. After that, the majority always votes for the candidate promising the most benefits with the result the democracy collapses because of the loose fiscal policy ensuing, always to be followed by a dictatorship, then a monarchy."
  • It started the last few years with stores opening late on Thanksgiving evening, to beat the stores that opened at midnight, which were trying to beat the stores that opened at 5am, which were trying to beat normal stores that opened at decent hour.  Now Walmart, Target, JCPenney's, and Macy's, among others, will all be open in the evening on Turkey Day.  Soon enough, Thanksgiving "family get-togethers" will consist of a quick brunch so the dads can watch football alone, the moms can go spend money the family doesn't have, and the teenagers can work their minimum wage retail jobs alone on a holiday.  I guess that's how most of us live most of the year anyway.  Seems we might be doing it wrong.
  • I think my fantasy football team is fairly solid and probably deeper than average.  Drafting and trading for good players isn't too difficult, as closely as I follow the game.  Thus I feel like I ought to be doing better than I am, sitting here at a very mediocre 3-3.  But some years are like that, luck runs against you or you realize too late that your strategies are not going to pan out.
  • KU is ranked #6 in the USA Today Coaches Poll.  Oklahoma State is at #12 and Wichita State is at #16.  Baylor, K-State, and Iowa St. also received votes but didn't make the top-25.
  • In the next month or so, I'll no longer be under contract with DirecTV.  I've been a mostly happy customer with DirecTV for almost 14 years in four different homes but it'll save us a little money to bundle our TV and internet together with Google Fiber.  Doing my research in advance I'm finding a few small issues with Google Fiber TV like equipment issues, missing channels, etc.  Have any of you Google Fiber TV customers experienced any issues?

Wednesday, October 09, 2013

Ender's Game

In case you don't follow the reference, the title character in the book Ender's Game was a gifted child who saved the world named Andrew "Ender" Wiggin.

Tuesday, October 08, 2013

Random Thoughts 10/08/13

  • My folks got married 46 years ago, yesterday.
  • Potential new names for the Washington Redskins: the Washington Thin-Skins [I heard that one on the radio], The Washington Red-Tape, the Washington Redskin Potatoes [online], the Potomac Drainage Basin Indigenous Nanticokes [from Gregg Easterbrook], and the Washington Braves [the original name back in 1930's Boston].
  • Never mind that a recent poll showed that 90% of American Indians aren't offended by the name.  In fact, there are three majority-Native American high schools (in Washington, Arizona, and Oklahoma) the proudly use the nickname.  It seems that white people have decided to be offended for them, probably, you know, because they know better what is best for "those people."
  • Kelly Oubre, a 6-7 shooting guard, committed today to play basketball at KU in 2014 after the high school star visited KU during the Late Night in the Phog event last Friday.  A five star recruit, Oubre picked Kansas over Kentucky and was recruited by several other schools including Baylor and Missouri.
  • I wrote most of while waiting for the phone call to go to the hospital and sit with friends.  Please pray for them, they are going through a really tough time.

Friday, October 04, 2013

Random Thoughts 10/4/13

  • The Chronicles of Narnia: The Silver Chair was green-lighted Tuesday to become the fourth film in the Narnia series.  It's still in pre-production of course, so it's probably two to three years away.
  • I turned 37 today.
  • Best quote I heard yesterday on the radio, "KU will have a 'rebuilding week' the first week of the season."  There will be five new starters after all.  After that, it's on.
  • It's old news but it was new to me, Johnson University (formerly Johnson Bible College) absorbed Florida Christian College in Kissimmee, Florida in a merger that will result in a two-campus scenario for the Tennessee-based Bible college.  Now there is Johnson University Tennessee (in Knoxville) and Johnson University Florida.
  • In other religious news, Cavalry Chapel's Chuck Smith died yesterday.  He was 86.  Smith was influential especially in changing worship styles in American churches, founding Maranatha! Music in the early 1970's.  Many "contemporary" churches are mimicking Smith's California ministry to "hippies" without even realizing it.  For better or worse, he was very influential in evolving American church culture out of the early 20th century.
  • KU's Late Night in the Phog is tonight, though it no longer represents the first practice of the year.  I strongly considered going but made other plans instead; I'm not sure that waiting in line for several hours is the best way to spend a birthday.  But seeing that new KU squad would be worth it.  In addition to the new players, recruits in attendance tonight include three top-20 high school seniors and five ranked juniors.
  • The Chiefs are 4-0, might be 6-0 going into the Houston game, and conceivably could be 7-2 or better at the bye in week 10.  They do have to play Peyton Manning twice in 14 days later this year but still.  Who knew?!
  • And here is KU freshman Andrew Wiggins, already the preseason Big XII freshman of the year, dunking at a camp this summer over KU alum Cole Aldrich.

Wednesday, October 02, 2013

Air Superiority

Random Pre-Birthday Thoughts, 10/2/13

  • I got an email coupon from Longhorn steakhouse: one free dessert with an entree.  If I go to Longhorn, a restaurant which serves 18, 20, and even 30 oz. steaks, and upon concluding my meal I still have room for dessert…  then I'm doing it wrong.
  • We did take advantage of the annual email birthday coupon to bd's Mongolian BBQ on Monday.  We neeeeeeed one of those at the Legends.
  • Football nerds rejoice.  I found an analysis of NFL scoring trends over the last 80 years.  With neat-o charts!
  • What did President Obama get me for my birthday?  He shut down the government!  I really appreciate the thought that went into getting me something so perfect.
  • Actually, I know quite a few federal employees (and don't blame them for it).  Hopefully their lives aren't disrupted too much.  But most federal employees were not furloughed Tuesday.  And many tens of thousands should be.  Permanently.  The ones I know either work in what I consider more essential government positions (like the military) or are capable enough that they would do just fine in the private sector.
  • It is now time to read the Matt Walsh blog about government bloat.  You don't have to read it all, you have my permission to skim it. [Thanks, Dustin]
  • Gratuitous U.S. Congress joke in 3… 2… 1… I can think of 535 federal employees who should lose their jobs right now!  [It's an oldie but a goodie.]
  • KU football has not beat a Big XII opponent in over 1,000 days.  Ugh.
  • KU basketball, on the other hand, might arguably be the best program in the entire country.
  • ObamaCare is clearly designed to move us toward a single-payer, i.e socialized system of health care.  Which is too bad.  Most government programs have very few consequences for failing.  They just grow and grow and grow… and we already can't afford it.  The rest of our lives we'll be hearing about people who die waiting for treatment.
  • Between the IRS and ObamaCare, the government will have the right to know everything about how you spend your money and what you do with your body.  American government is now more intrusive than the founders could have ever imagined.

More Hobbit

A new Hobbit part 2 trailer.  Ah, yes, this is good.

Tuesday, October 01, 2013