A Visit From Paula’s Parents

A brief summary of a visit from Paula’s parents.

paula_parents.jpgWe just dropped Paula’s parents off at the airport. I hope they have a good, safe trip back. I also hope nothing gets confiscated–Paula’s mom had some cuticle scissors taken on the way in!

In case you’re wondering, it was a pleasant visit. We went to San Jose, San Francisco, Big Basin (where we saw some truly impressive redwoods), and Santa Cruz. Woohoo!

Mentioning San Jose reminds me: I recently discovered that San Jose is actually larger than San Francisco (both in terms of land mass and population). It’s the third largest city in the state–following Los Angeles and San Diego–and the eleventh largest in America.

That really threw me for a loop. My whole life I’ve thought there were two big cities in California: Los Angeles and San Francisco. Once again, my Gen X geographic illiteracy races to the fore!

Traumatizing My Mother-In-Law

On how the little details we learn in seminary can really upset some people.

On a personal note, my in-laws are visiting right now.

It’s pretty amazing–relatively few people wanted to visit us when we lived in Springfield, MO. Now that we’re in the Bay Area, it seems as though we have a new guest every weekend!

In any event, my in-laws are visiting. At one point we began discussing Leonardo Da Vinci’s Last Supper, and I mentioned that there were no chairs at that meal–the participants were all reclining.

That little tidbit of trivia traumatized my mother-in-law. I think she felt slightly betrayed. I always try to bear in mind that the little details I learned in seminary can really disturb people if communicated improperly, but this one kind of caught me off-guard.


A Blatant Attempt to Get Linked By Listing Blogs I Love

Some blogs I read, along with a shameless attempt to catch Mean Dean’s attention.

Here, in a blatant attempt to get linked, I’d like to mention a blog that I’ve been reading with great enjoyment for some time now: Heal Your Church Website by Mean Dean Peters.

He muses on church websites, how to make them better, and all sorts of other issues pertaining to the web (particularly the Christian corners of it). Here’s my little blurb about it (for his blurb contest): he’s a veritable microcelebrity among Christian webheads. (How’s that, Dean? note: Dean got back to me and would prefer something describing his site: try a haven from the Jesus junk cluttering the web, or an irresistible magnet for Christian webheads, or casting down every vain website that makes people think Christians are lame, or wherein a microcelebrity among Christian webheads preaches good design, or giving Christian websites a baptism of fire, or perhaps even goading Christian sites to move beyond spinning crosses. But here’s my fave: wherein a Christian webhead does battle with the forces of kitsch)

FYI: here are some other blogs I try to check on a regular basis (no particular order):
Jordon Cooper: cool Canadian minister
Andrew Careaga: author of several books & a Charismatic youth pastor I met at a conference
Nicholette Lockwood: a student from our last campus ministry (read her testimony).
Joshua Sargent: an AG pastor who stumbled across my blog
Wil Wheaton: yes, he used to play Wesley Crusher on Star Trek. No, he’s not a Christian. I just find him interesting.
Richard & Christie Browne: friends from Missouri
Joel on Software: I just like this guy’s approach to programming

And two metablogs that I visit:
Blogs 4 God: a cool collection of Christian blogs
blogdex: I’m just fascinated by this tool. It’s the Yahoo! Buzz of blogs.

We’re In a Magazine!

Wow–we’re in a magazine!

The other day I got a phone call from an old friend of mine (Danny Dardeau: his sister and I were in Chi Alpha together, and his brother-in-law was my roomie) back in Louisiana.

He’s begun a Christian magazine called Acadiana Christian and the magazine decided to feature us in a missionary spotlight!

We haven’t seen the issue yet, and it doesn’t seem to be posted on their website, but we’ve already had friends and family mention seeing us in ‘that Christian magazine.’ That’s pretty cool!

Postcards Are Very Confusing…

Just a little note to myself on the legal definition of a postcard

This is a bit of a random entry, but I’m about to send out a postcard to all the churches in my new district, and I’ve had the hardest time figuring out what the rules and rates are for postcards.

You’d think it would be extremely easy to find that information on the US Post Office website transporter 3 online , but it’s not.

After much searching, here are the basic rules: postcards cost $.23 to mail and must be between a minimum of 3–1/2 inches high by 5 inches long by 0.007 inch thick and a maximum of 4–1/4 inches high by 6 inches long by 0.016 inch thick.

I don’t know if you’ll ever find that information useful, but by blogging it here I’ll save myself a huge headache next time around!

Look At My New Tree!

My favorite gift of all time–a threefold citrus tree!

tree.jpgToday I got one of the best birthday presents I’ve ever received–a citrus tree! Actually, it’s three citrus trees in one. I’ll name it trinity. A company named Willits & Newcomb specializes in citrus trees, and make these “cocktail” trees by grafting two or three varieties onto one trunk. Quite cool!

This one will bear Valencia Oranges, Eureka Lemons, and Bearss Limes!

This is one real advantage to having your mother-in-law come for a visit right before your birthday–you get great gifts!

Hanging Out In Palo Alto

Musings on the economics of apartment complexes.

This is almost the last bit of news on my mom’s visit: she’s leaving Tuesday morning…

Today we went to church at Peninsula Christian Center, the church Paula and I have been attending since moving here.

Afterwards, we came home, had some PBJ sandwiches, and passed the afternoon listening to the Peninsula Symphony play a free concert at our apartment complex! Evidently Oak Creek apartments are a big sponsor of the symphony, so once a year they come do a free concert for us. Pretty cool.

That made me start thinking, however. How can an apartment complex afford to sponsor a symphony? The answer: pretty easily. Oak Creek Apartments has 759 units. Renting those at Bay Area prices means they’re taking in around 1.5 million dollars each month. Even if they had 50 employees and paid them $100,000 a year they still would clear around a million each month. Pretty neat business, that.

We wrapped up the day by grilling some steaks. Fun stuff.

Visiting Monterey and Santa Cruz

A brief description of one of the most amazing aquariums in the universe.

Today we took my mother to visit Monterey Bay Aquarium and Santa Cruz Wharf.

As far as I’m concerned, Monterey Bay Aquarium is the best aquarium in the universe. It’s amazing! If you ever get a chance to visit it, you have to go. If they ever put the seven wonders of the world to vote, I’ll serously consider casting my ballot for this attraction. It is simply breathtaking.

After spending four hours in the aquarium, we were quite ready for supper at the Bubba Gump Shrimp Company (yes, like in Forrest Gump). It was pretty neat, and the food was good. We even got our picture taken with a Forrest Gump impersonator!

Finally, we visited the Santa Cruz Wharf at the north end of Monterey Bay. It was pretty neat, although the sea lions weren’t too frisky.

Overall, it was a pleasant day spent roaming Northern California.

More On The Madhouse Called San Francisco

“San Francisco is a mad city, inhabited for the most part by perfectly insane people…” Rudyard Kipling

I found out I’m not alone in my opinions about San Francisco’s sanity. No less an authority than Rudyard Kipling is squarely in my corner: “San Francisco is a mad city, inhabited for the most part by perfectly insane people…”

Kenny Worthley (a friend from Springfield) wrote in with a marvelous observation: San Francisco seems to be confused about pot and pots. I quote:

“My questions is: what if you were on pot, medically necessary of course, and need to use the pot, but were not in a spot with a pot because you were growing pot on a public lot? You would have to put down your pot, run to another pot spot, and privately poop.

So here is the scoop on poop — I think you should be able to claim medicinal pot pooping — so you could publically poop on the spot in a pot lot.”

Well said, Kenny: that would make an excellent letter to the editor!