Friday, December 30, 2011

Transformers Feature: Vector Prime

New Year's is upon us, so why not do a feature on the Transformers version of "Father Time" himself? Of course, I'm referring to Vector Prime. Vector Prime is a member of "the Thirteen." In theory, these are the 13 original Transformers as created by Primus, and each of these Transformers was given a special power to help defend the universe. In Vector Prime's case, that power is mastery over the space-time continuum.

Wednesday, December 28, 2011

Transformers Feature: Shattered Glass Goldbug

At BotCon 2008, the "Shattered Glass" universe was introduced. Although there is still a bit of a divide within the fandom as to the merits of the alternate universe concept, I think it's fair to say by now that the franchise has given Fun Publications a venue for creating stories and toys that are unique to their properties (that is, the official Transformers club and the BotCon convention), and that sell quite well. In fact, the toys from the 2008 convention set go for such high prices these days (and I've needed the money badly enough) that I have to confess that I have already sold all of my 2008 official Shattered Glass toys except for Goldbug.

Monday, December 26, 2011

Shopping for Baby Clothes

Lest I give anyone the wrong impression, I should hasten to say that my wife is NOT expecting.

Oddly enough, I'm not talking about shopping for any of my young nieces and nephews, either (although my youngest nephew, at a few months old, might nonetheless have been benefited from this adventure when I get to meet him in a few days, had it not worked out as I hoped). Rather, I was shopping for a Muppet.

Friday, December 23, 2011

The Reflectionary: Scripture for Worship on Christmas Eve

The Revised Common Lectionary isn't just a guide to Scripture passages for Sunday worship. It also has suggested scriptures for other important days on the church calendar. Sometimes these special days are called "festivals." Christmas Eve is one such "festival" celebrated with a special worship gathering by many Presbyterian churches. As such, I thought it might be helpful to use this Friday's slot (the last on which I'll be featuring "Reflectionary" posts for the foreseeable future) to discuss the scripture passages for Christmas Eve worship. These passages are the same every year, as opposed to following the three-year cycle of most Revised Common Lectionary readings. As usual, all links are to the CEB via BibleGateway.com, but if you prefer another translation, feel free to use that instead (either with your own Bible, or via the drop-down menu at BibleGateway.com).

Long-time and especially dedicated readers among you may recognize most of the text here as being identical to the podcast version I've linked to in the past (although there I'm still using the now-defunct TNIV). If you are such a person, I'd like to take this opportunity to thank you for your continuing support. And to everyone, a very Merry Christmas!

Wednesday, December 21, 2011

As Much Story As We Need

Guido Reni 003One of the elements of the "Godly Play" curriculum is to ask the children, after having told the story for the morning, if there are any parts of the story that they could leave out, and still have all the story that they need. When I first heard this phrase, my evangelical impulse was to say "of course not!" After all, the Biblical texts were given to us, as they are, for a reason, right? If God didn't want some element to be there, it wouldn't be there, right?

Monday, December 19, 2011

Reflections on Art and Charles Dickens

Marley's Ghost-John Leech, 1843Shortly before Fuller Seminary closes up for Christmas vacation each December, the staff are treated to an annual Christmas party. This year, while waiting for the munchies to be served, I had the privilege of speaking with Fuller President Richard Mouw for a bit. Among other things, he asked about what books I've been reading, and I was able to tell him that I've been working through the Charles Dickens classic, A Christmas Carol. Perhaps somewhat ironically, although I've seen and heard numerous versions of this story over the years on television, at the movies, and on radio, I've never actually read through the original before, and thanks to the easy access to Public Domain works provided by the Nook, this has seemed a good time to do so.

Saturday, December 17, 2011

Dealing with Rejection

Circle-Thumb-DownThank you very much for taking the time to fill out an application...

...Unfortunately, your name was not among those who will be nominated...

I hope that you can imagine how difficult it was... to have so MANY good folks to choose from—you among them—and not be able to select them all!
Perhaps the words above seem familiar to you. I imagine most adults have gotten rejection letters of some kind or another at some time in their lives. However well-intentioned and even honest the words may attempt to be, the result is still inevitably bad news, and no one wants to have to read one of these things.

Friday, December 16, 2011

The Reflectionary: Scripture for Worship on December 18th, 2011

Here are the passages for December 18, 2011, the 4th Sunday in Advent (Year B). All links are to the CEB via BibleGateway.com, but if you prefer another translation, feel free to use that instead (either with your own Bible, or via the drop-down menu at BibleGateway.com).

As I have been doing all through Advent, I'd like to invite readers to consider how the themes of Advent are advanced by reading these passages this week.

Wednesday, December 14, 2011

Photo Contest Entry: Attack of the G2 Decepticons

The latest contest run by the folks at the Hasbro Transformers Collectors' Club asked members to depict "ANY of the Fun Publications produced Transformers toy(s) and showcase them in some sort of battle or adventure. ACTION is the key word!" As with another recent contest, I chose to use Action Master Thundercracker. After working so hard to get this toy made, I figure I should make the most of it!

Monday, December 12, 2011

Offbeat Transformers Collectibles: Fruit Flavored Snacks

This little oddity is something I found during a recent trip to the so-called 99 Cents Only Store.  Of course, I may have to rethink my title, since this is obviously no more collectible than the Valentine's Candy was, but ah, well....

Friday, December 09, 2011

The Reflectionary: Scripture for Worship on December 11th, 2011

Here are the passages for December 11, 2011, the 3rd Sunday in Advent (Year B). All links are to the CEB via BibleGateway.com, but if you prefer another translation, feel free to use that instead (either with your own Bible, or via the drop-down menu at BibleGateway.com).

Wednesday, December 07, 2011

Parables Aren't Like This

Many of Jesus' parables follow a familiar pattern: "The kingdom of heaven is like..." and he goes on to give some illustration from the world of their day that might help his audience to understand heaven just a little better. It seems to me that these illustrations are always in the affirmative. That is to say, Jesus always says "the kingdom of heaven is like such and such," rather than ever saying "the kingdom of heaven is not like such and such."

Monday, December 05, 2011

Pasadena's Version of a Snow Day

This past Thursday morning, when I woke up, I checked my alarm clock as I always do to see what time it was.

I couldn't, because the power was out.

Although blackouts are by no means common, I've lived through enough of them that I didn't let it bother me too much. I checked my watch to see that it was indeed time to get up, and so attempted to start my day. Since our bathroom has no windows, I could only do even the most basic of necessities by lighting a candle for minimal illumination. Not able to do much else, I decided to go ahead and drive to work early.

I went outside, and saw the first examples of the damage done by the previous night's winds. We'd been told that they'd be pretty severe. "Hurricane force," in fact. So seeing that the pots and plants immediately outside most of my neighbors' apartments had been knocked about, and that the pool was filled with leaves and similar debris, was hardly a surprise, although seeing that the "School Crossing" sign across the street had been blown completely horizontal was rather unusual.

Friday, December 02, 2011

The Reflectionary: Scripture for Worship on December 4th, 2011

Here are the passages for December 4, 2011, the 2nd Sunday in Advent (Year B). All links are to the CEB via BibleGateway.com, but if you prefer another translation, feel free to use that instead (either with your own Bible, or via the drop-down menu at BibleGateway.com).

One big question for all the passages below: How are the themes of Advent (and ask yourself "What are the themes of Advent?" if that helps) advanced by reading these passages this week?

Wednesday, November 30, 2011

Music from Montreat: Just Before Daybreak

One of the benefits of Facebook is hearing from friends from other periods of one's life. One of my college friends, who like me had attended the Montreat Youth Conferences while in high school (a surprisingly small number of people, given that I attended college in Montreat!), shared this video from YouTube, which was truly a blast from the past. It features Ken Holt, the music leader for Weeks 3 and 4 of the 1990 Montreat Youth Conferences, singing the theme song for those conferences, "Just Before Daybreak." I didn't imagine that a song written for week-long Youth Conference more than 20 years ago would be available even on a place like YouTube, but now I'm curious to see what other gems of this kind I might find.

Monday, November 28, 2011

An Advent Reflection

For those of you who follow the Christian calendar, you'll already know that yesterday was the first Sunday of Advent. In keeping with what has become a tradition at my church for several years now, we released an Advent Devotional booklet for our members, with a different reflection written by members of our community for each day from now until Christmas. Upon volunteering to write such a reflection for this year's booklet, I was asked to work with Isaiah 49:1-7. The following was edited slightly* and included in the book for December 10th, but I'm going to go ahead and post it here today to kick off the season.

Friday, November 25, 2011

The Reflectionary: Scripture for Worship on November 27th, 2011

Here are the passages for November 27, 2011, the 1st Sunday in Advent (The first Sunday of the liturgical calendar, so we're now in Year B of the lectionary cycle). All links are to the CEB via BibleGateway.com, but if you prefer another translation, feel free to use that instead (either with your own Bible, or via the drop-down menu at BibleGateway.com).

Isaiah 64:1-9
  • People often associate the season of Advent with Christmas. And rightly so, given that it's the four Sundays immediately preceding the Christmas holiday, and many verses to be read during this season will involve explicitly Messianic promises or the prelude to the story of Jesus' birth. But there's more to the Advent season than just the story of a baby being born. Why do you think this passage is included during this time of year?
Psalm 80:1-7, 17-19

1 Corinthians 1:3-9
  • It may not mean anything, but I'm struck by the inclusion of the possessive pronoun "my" in verse 4, in the midst of Paul's standard greeting (he gives thanks to God for his audience in several epistles, often including this pronoun). Why is this possessive pronoun included? Does Paul doubt that his audience also considers God "their" God?
Mark 13:24-37
  • This passage certainly has little to do with the birth of the baby Jesus (which, of course, isn't covered in the gospel according to Mark at all, anyway)! As I said before, Advent isn't just a time for remembering that story. The inclusion of passages like this demonstrate that it also a time to reflect on Jesus' second coming.
  • Or does it? When Jesus says "I assure you that this generation won’t pass away until all these things happen," can he be talking about his return? Or does he mean something by "this generation" other than the lifetimes of those humans hearing his words?
  • What does it mean about Jesus that he says even "the Son" (presumably referring to himself, although I'm curious to hear if there's another interpretation) doesn't know when these things will take place?
  • Might this passage have any meaningful connection to the parable we read a few weeks ago, or is it talking about something entirely different?

Wednesday, November 23, 2011

Success, Assurance, and the Sims Social

I've recently discovered the Sims Social on Facebook. It's hardly the first game, even on Facebook, that "simulates" a virtual world, but it certainly seems to be one of the more popular. Although this may seem like an obvious statement to some, it's perhaps an ironic one to others: a game that explicitly attempts to resemble (parts of) real life gets me thinking about real life in ways that I might not have thought about it without the simulation.

Friday, November 18, 2011

The Reflectionary: Scripture for Worship on November 20th, 2011

Here are the passages for November 20, 2011, Christ the King Sunday (sometimes referred to as Reign of Christ Sunday). Christ the King Sunday is the final Sunday of the liturgical year (Year A, in this case, on the Revised Common Lectionary). All links are to the CEB via BibleGateway.com, but if you prefer another translation, feel free to use that instead (either with your own Bible, or via the drop-down menu at BibleGateway.com).

Wednesday, November 16, 2011

Obsessions, Distractions, and Allowing People to Serve

A couple of days ago, Scot McKnight posted an article about the consecration of women bishops in the Church of England. Naturally, this is causing the usual consternation among those who don't believe that God wants women to serve in church offices (much less the really high ones!). The article discusses some of the usual responses: some people are leaving the church (it specifically notes how some bishops and priests are taking the Catholic Church up on an offer to allow them to transfer over to Catholicism, but I'm sure that many Anglicans are leaving for other denominations, and some members are no doubt leaving altogether under some "I can be a better Christian without the church" mindset), while others are choosing to "fight from within." It's a familiar pattern by now.

Monday, November 14, 2011

What Do You Miss?

Country music singer Trace AdkinsI admit that I don't really follow Country and Western music. That's probably why it took the first celebrity version of The Apprentice to introduce me to one of Trace Adkin's most popular songs: "You're Gonna Miss This," which he sang at the live season-ending event, and for which recordings were made available to support the Food Allergy & Anaphylaxis Network, a charity important to Adkins because his daughter suffers from such allergies. I was impressed by the song, thought the charity worth supporting, and so it now shows up regularly when I set my iPod to "shuffle." (I wish I could link to the specific version of the song that supported the charity, but I have been unable to locate it in iTunes.)

Friday, November 11, 2011

The Reflectionary: Scripture for Worship on November 13th, 2011

Although the Revised Common Lectionary runs on a three-year calendar, differences between years sometimes dictate that there aren't the same number of Sunday observances from one year to another. Thus, as I look at my three-year old writings, I realize that there was no 33rd Sunday of Ordinary Time in 2008. The upshot of this is that I am actually writing these reflections with 2011 fully in mind.

Here are the passages for November 13, 2011, the 33rd Sunday in Ordinary Time (Year A). All links are to the CEB via BibleGateway.com, but if you prefer another translation, feel free to use that instead (either with your own Bible, or via the drop-down menu at BibleGateway.com).

Wednesday, November 09, 2011

Remembering Wrath Side Story

Back when I was in high school, I was a member of a local Star Trek fan club that met once a month. Besides watching episodes of the show (both original and Next Generation, but none of the other spin-offs existed yet at that point), we also enjoyed the occasional piece created by fans. One such film we watched, which was apparently presented live at a convention somewhere, was called Wrath Side Story.

Monday, November 07, 2011

Game Show Board Games: Match Game (1974 2nd edition)

"Get ready to match the stars!"

NBC did a version of The Match Game in the 1960's, but that's not the version that anyone remembers. The iconic version of Match Game is the version that started on CBS in 1973 (with the year proudly displayed after the nameMatch Game '73and changing each year as appropriate until the daytime network version was cancelled), which itself spawned a pair of successful syndicated versions (Match Game PM and The Match Game, the latter of which continued on for some time after the daytime version's end). Similarly, there were several home game versions of the NBC game, but I've neither seen any of those nor cared enough to spend much time searching for them. It's the iconic '70s version that I made the effort to add to my collection.

Friday, November 04, 2011

The Reflectionary: Scripture for Worship on November 6th, 2011

Here are the passages for November 6, 2011, the 32nd Sunday in Ordinary Time (Year A). All links are to the CEB via BibleGateway.com, but if you prefer another translation, feel free to use that instead (either with your own Bible, or via the drop-down menu at BibleGateway.com).

Thursday, November 03, 2011

Scot McKnight on Junia - Part 3

As I wind down my reflections on Scot McKnight's discussion on Junia last week, I recognize that the topic of Junia is one that generates a fair bit of discussion in academic circles. Having talked about Junia's place in the early church, and how other women in Biblical history have similarly had their contributions silenced and forgotten, it's appropriate to ask "so, what do we do about it?"

Wednesday, November 02, 2011

Scot McKnight on Junia - Part 2

Having established the back-and-forth of Junia's history of gender-swapping and whether or not s/he was an apostle, Scot McKnight, speaking to an audience at Fuller Theological Seminary last week, suggested that Junia has been silenced by elements of the church. As I mentioned on Monday, the title of the lecture was "Junia is Not Alone in the Church." Junia is not the only woman of significance to the church, and Junia is not alone in having been silenced.

Tuesday, November 01, 2011

November is National Model Railroad Month

I grew up around model railroading. The set you see here takes up the bulk of the room, and is merely the longest-standing part of my Dad's efforts in model railroading. Since November is National Model Railroad Month, today seems like a good day to share some pictures of the collection at my parents' home in Louisville, KY. The main part, as seen here, is an HO scale layout (to non- model train folks, that means 1:87.1 scale). This is the part that Dad started putting together while he was still in high school, and has mountains, buildings, trees, and so on.

Monday, October 31, 2011

Scot McKnight on Junia – Part 1

Long-time readers know that I've followed Scot McKnight's blog, Jesus Creed, for several years now. So, naturally I wanted to see McKnight in person when he came to Fuller last week, sponsored by our school's continuing education department (and by the Burner Blog, which is produced by that department).

McKnight spoke on two occasions during his visit. The first was during our regularly-scheduled weekly chapel gathering, at which he spoke on the parable of the rich man and Lazarus. Although this was a challenging message worthy of commentary, I'm going to instead focus on the evening event, during which McKnight spoke about Romans 16, and specifically about the apostle Junia. The title of the lecture was "Junia is Not Alone in the Church."

Friday, October 28, 2011

The Reflectionary: Scripture for Worship on October 30, 2011

Here are the passages for October 30, 2011, the 31th Sunday in Ordinary Time (Year A). All links are to the CEB via BibleGateway.com, but if you prefer another translation, feel free to use that instead (either with your own Bible, or via the drop-down menu at BibleGateway.com).

Wednesday, October 26, 2011

Not a God of Unconditional Apathy

It has been said that the opposite of love is not hate, as is commonly supposed, but rather apathy. While I've heard this for a long while, I was nonetheless surprised by something said in a sermon I was listening to recently (but which was recorded a couple of years ago) that gave it a twist I'd never heard before.

Monday, October 24, 2011

Sacred Place

A couple of weeks ago, the pastor at my church preached a message drawing from Genesis 22, where Jacob has a vision of God at Bethel. In it, the pastor pointed out how the passage took care to mention several times that Jacob was in "a certain place," and how Jacob marked that place after his experience there. The pastor then talked about the ways that God is experienced in certain places in our own lives. While he was careful to acknowledge that God can be experienced in any place, the pastor paid attention to the ways in which the biblical narrative calls out specific places as having special meaning to God's people, as was the case for Jacob at Bethel. We were invited to think of those places in which we experienced God, and although I ultimately was able to come up with several, the first location that came to mind was Montreat.

Friday, October 21, 2011

The Reflectionary: Scripture for Worship on October 23, 2011

For those who've kept track, today's supposed to be the end of the world (less "again" this time and more "still"), according to Harold Camping. After the failure of the May 21st prophecies, the media hasn't said much about the "final end" that was supposed to come today. Although I've really already dealt with that issue back in May, I do want to at least mention the fact in passing.

That done, and since I have every reason to assume we'll all still be around, here are the passages for October 23, 2011, the 30th Sunday in Ordinary Time (Year A). All links are to the CEB via BibleGateway.com, but if you prefer another translation, feel free to use that instead (either with your own Bible, or via the drop-down menu at BibleGateway.com).

Wednesday, October 19, 2011

Humans Among Transformers Toys

Although the Transformers franchise has always been primarily about giant transforming robots, the folks behind the fiction have generally sought to include a human element to the saga from the very beginning. But the proportion of human representation in the toyline itself has always been fairly low. While this perhaps isn't an exhaustive accounting, I'll try to cover the bases.

The first attempt to include figures of human characters came in Generation One, with the advent of the Headmasters and Targetmasters (and, later, Powermasters). Technically, these aren't humans, but an alien race called Nebulans. However, in the Marvel comics, Nebulans were all but indistinguishable from humans, so I'll include them (and, Spike, the "Nebulan leader" who came with the original Fortress Maximus, was a human).

Monday, October 17, 2011

The Myth of the Middle Way

Fork in the road - geograph.org.uk - 1355424"The Truth Lies Somewhere in the Middle." I've been trained to believe this mantra for most of my life. "Everything in Moderation." "Don't go to Extremes." It's certainly easy to understand the appeal of such a teaching, especially in a world where extremism seems to be the cause of so many of the world's ills. But as I've gotten older, I've come to realize that there are certain areas where "the middle" is not only not always the best solution, but it may actively be worse than either of the poles it seeks to bridge.

Friday, October 14, 2011

The Reflectionary: Scripture for Worship on October 16, 2011

Here are the passages for October 16, 2011, the 29th Sunday in Ordinary Time (Year A). All links are to the TNIV via BibleGateway.com, but if you prefer another translation, feel free to use that instead (either with your own Bible, or via the drop-down menu at BibleGateway.com).

Wednesday, October 12, 2011

Not So Long Ago

Sherlock Holmes - The Man with the Twisted LipAlthough in some sense I consider myself a fan of pop culture, and even make that claim on this blog, it wouldn't take very much scrutiny of that idea to quickly learn that, in many respects, I'm rather behind the times. I'm only familiar with the popular music stars of today in the vaguest sense, I watch more television via Netflix than I do first-run episodes, and I spend more of my time in the car listening to Old Time Radio podcasts than I do to anything actually broadcast live.

Monday, October 10, 2011

Memories Evoked by "Brazil" and "Babka"

The students sat lined up behind the tables in opposing rows of four, square black pieces of plastic wedged firmly in their hands in anticipation. The moderator began to read the question.

"What third world country...?"

A buzzer sounded, cutting the question off. In Quick Recall, unlike the modern version of Jeopardy!, interrupting a question is actively encouraged. This has the potential payoff of rewarding a good prediction by getting a response in before the other team has even figured out what is about to be asked, but it also has the obvious risk of potentially requiring an answer before the crucial clue has even been revealed.

Friday, October 07, 2011

The Reflectionary: Scripture for Worship on October 9, 2011

Here are the passages for October 9, 2011, the 28th Sunday in Ordinary Time (Year A). All Scripture links are to the CEB via BibleGateway.com unless otherwise noted, but if you prefer another translation, feel free to use that instead (either with your own Bible, or via the drop-down menu at BibleGateway.com).

Friday, September 30, 2011

The Reflectionary: Scripture for Worship on October 2, 2011

The church I attend uses a Sunday School program based on the "Godly Play" curriculum. When talking with one of the parents/teachers some time ago, one of the things he talked about is how much attention the curriculum pays to the liturgical calendar. Of particular note, he was impressed by how the "green" weeks on the church calendar (what the Revised Common Lectionary calls "Ordinary Time") are instead referred to as the "Good Green Growing Time." This helps the children (and their parents?) to understand that every Sunday is important, and that God is always at work.

Monday, September 26, 2011

Bumper Stickers, Divisiveness, and Dialogue

I'm often both fascinated and discouraged by the bumper stickers that I read when I'm traveling. Bumper stickers are fascinating because they have the advantage of communicating a message to the world in a concise manner. They can be discouraging because that conciseness often means that a message comes off either more blunt, or perhaps even less clear, than might be helpful.

Friday, September 23, 2011

The Reflectionary: Scripture for Worship on September 25, 2011

A few years ago, I had a weekly feature here I called "The Reflectionary," which grew out of a podcast project I did for a few months. Basically, I would follow the Revised Common Lectionarythat is, the Bible readings that many churches use for their weekly worship gatheringsand post my own questions and comments as I reflected on each reading.

Thursday, September 22, 2011

Seven Dwarfs as Mortal Flesh

Harikalar Diyari Snowwhite 7Dwarfs 06042 nevitMy wife and I put this parody together a number of years ago, about the same time we came up with this one. Riffing on hymns may seem a bit sacrilegious  but it's all in good fun. I definitely imagine the Disney version of the dwarfs when I think of this song:

Monday, September 19, 2011

Sweets, Self-Control, and Spirituality

I guess I've had marshmallows on the brain lately.

Shortly after making a batch over the Labor Day weekend (seen at left. They turned out really good, if I say so myself), I was reminded of a classic study in delayed gratification, involving marshmallows, that was conducted some 40 years ago.

Friday, September 16, 2011

Game Show Board Games: The New Tic-Tac-Dough (70s version)

Last week, I featured the 1950's version of the Tic-Tac-Dough board game.  This week, I'm discussing the 1970's version, which like the original version, seems to have come out roughly around the time of the show's premiere (1978, in this case, although the copyright actually says 1977 for some reason). The game play of the new show was rather similar to the original version, although they changed pretty quickly from shuffling only after both contestants had been asked a question to shuffling after each question. Also, center-box questions on the show became routinely two-part questions, as opposed to merely "more difficult" than other questions (although like the original, extra time was allowed for the contestant to consider a response).

Wednesday, September 14, 2011

When "Personal Responsibility" Crosses the Line

A couple of days ago, shortly after the Republican debate scheduled for that evening, I found the following statement on Twitter:
In the last two debates, the GOP debate audience has cheered: 1. 234 executions, 2. Letting uninsured people die
I was already aware of the incident that point #1 refers to, and found Bruce Reyes-Chow's commentary on that incident to be a more than sufficient response.  I chose not to throw in "my two cents" at that time, except to share that post via Twitter and Facebook.

Monday, September 12, 2011

Politics via Phineas and Ferb

I've been enjoying the Disney Channel cartoon Phineas and Ferb via my Netflix subscription recently. Now, so far as I can tell, this cartoon is pretty non-political, and I'm not out to expose any supposed "hidden messages" in the writing (which is always excellent). But while listening to some commentary on the recent Presidential debates (and, specifically, the current Republican front-runner), I got to thinking about how certain Phineas and Ferb catchphrases might be viewed in a different light if presumed to be talking about the candidates.

Consider, for example, the following:

Friday, September 09, 2011

Attending Fuller's 2011 Faculty and Staff Welcome Event

Yesterday, Fuller celebrated its annual Faculty and Staff Welcome event, which meant that I not only got a free breakfast, but got to see what theme the administration has chosen for the seminary for the coming year. This year's theme was drawn from Philippians 3:10-14, where Christians are encouraged to "pursue the goal" that God has for us. In this vein, our tables were decorated with trophies and supplies to make medals (perhaps in keeping with the biblical illustration of running a race, found more explicitly in 1 Corinthians or maybe 2 Timothy, both also attributed to the Apostle Paul).

Wednesday, September 07, 2011

Game Show Board Games: Tic-Tac-Dough (1950s version)

I've featured a few game show board games on this blog in the past, and it's high time I got back to doing a few more. This time, I'm going to feature the oldest such game in my collection: a 1956 or 57 (my sources differ on the year) edition of the game created for the original Tic-Tac-Dough. Jack Barry (later known to my generation as the host of The Joker's Wild before his death in 1984) is featured on the cover, and was indeed the original host of Tic-Tac-Dough. But since Barry was only host of the show for a few months in 1956, it seems reasonably likely that he had already moved on by the time this game would have been available.

Monday, September 05, 2011

Regarding The Wrath of God

I passed by this church the other day (identifying marks removed from the photo to protect the guilty). In case you haven't clicked on the image to read the sign, it says "911 Destruction - Forecast of a Greater Wrath Predicted."

Now, I expect that a great many churches will choose to recognize the 10-year anniversary of the tragic events in New York and elsewhere. It's become so much a part of our cultural fabric that it's hard to imagine not saying something about it. Even so, surely this is not the way to go about it!

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