C'est La Vie

What a beautiful piece of heartache this has all turned out to be. Lord knows we've learned the hard way all about healthy apathy. And I use these words pretty loosely. There's so much more to life than words..
I really think I'll be ok. They've taken their toll these latter days.
-- Over the Rhine, Latter Days


2001.04 2001.05 2001.06 2001.07 2001.08 2001.09 2001.10 2001.11 2001.12 2002.01 2002.02 2002.03 2002.04 2002.05 2002.06 2002.07 2002.08 2002.09 2002.10 2002.11 2002.12 2003.01 2003.02 2003.04 2003.05 2003.06 2003.07 2003.08 2003.09 2003.10 2003.11 2003.12 2004.01 2004.02 2004.03 2004.04 2004.05 2004.06 2004.07 2004.08 2004.09 2004.10 2004.11 2004.12 2005.01 2005.02 2005.03 2005.04 2005.05 2005.07 2005.10 2005.11 2006.02 2006.03 2006.04 2006.05 2006.07 2006.08 2006.09 2006.10 2006.11 2006.12 2007.01 2007.02 2007.03 2007.04 2007.05 2007.06 2007.07 2007.08 2007.09 2007.10 2007.11 2007.12 2008.01 2008.02 2008.03 2008.04 2008.05 2008.06 2008.07 2008.08 2008.09 2008.10 2008.11 2008.12 2009.01 2009.02 2009.03 2009.05 2009.07

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Contact Me

by email
change to proper format: pattyt81 at hotmail dot com
(I hate Spam)

By mail
(contact me for my new address)

Other Weblogs I enjoy
(In no particular order)

Katy Raymond


Recommended Readings

A Grief Observed

Wishful Thinking
Frederick Buechner

Divine Conspiracy
Dallas Willard (may never finish)

Rich Mullins: An Arrow Pointing to Heaven
James Bryan Smith

Recommended Listening
(from my collection)

The Hymnal, Arkadelphia
Randall Goodgame

Land of the Living
Eric Peters

Laryngitis, Longing
Katy Bowser

Walk [EP], Carried Along, Clear to Venus, Love and Thunder, and live bootlegs
Andrew Peterson

In the Company of Angels
Caedmon's Call

Delusions of Grandeur
Fleming and John

The entire CD catalog
Eddie From Ohio

Bootlegs including Eddie From Ohio, Rich Mullins, David Wilcox, and Andrew Peterson

Things I love
(AKA: Ways to win my heart)
Music, gift certificates, ice cream, music, chocolate, meatballs, music, books, knowledge, music, good movies, music, animals, art supplies, music, cotton candy, fajitas, music, safety, music....

Things I wish I owned and could listen to or read
found at Relevantmagazine.com,
and at pastemusic.com, too

Monday, January 31, 2005

I went to see Derek Webb over the weekend, and brought back his two disks that had come out since I last saw him well over two years ago: I See Things Upside Down (his newest album) and The House Show, a live recording including songs from various parts of his career. I brought them into work to put onto my computer and listen to here (I've already got a few other albums and am slowly adding more to my files here), and the cases were sitting on my desk which I have just moved to the back of the office since a higher ranking person recently came in and claimed the front-of-the-office desk at which I'd been sitting. (Which is fine, 'cause now SHE will have to deal with most of the friggin' Reservists when they come in with dumb questions or urgent-because-they-procrastinated demands. No offense to general Reservists.. There is a stark difference between Active Duty and Reservists, and Reservists are all well and good as long as they stay out of our offices the same way that Target Customers, when I worked at Target, were all well and good as long as they came in, behaved themselves well, asked nicely if they needed help, bought their items, and left. The moment they started getting snippity or frequenting the customer service/returns counter, they were not looked on as kindly by me or my fellow employees. Such is similar to how it is in any company or situation that involves customer service.. the Navy's pay office looks on the rest of us with disdain, I'd imagine, because we all have the same dumb questions or last-minute demands, and I'm sure their pay heads look at all the pay branches similarly. So, since in this command the main 'customers' are Reservists, they are the brunt of our whining and complaining.)

Anyway, back to the story. Cheif comes over to see how my move was going while I was in the middle of printing out the weekends' message traffic. She picked up the CD cases and read out loud the album title and the track listing on the back of the House . "Faith My Eyes," she read, and on down through the great variety of sentiments expressed through the titles. "Lover, Intro To Wedding Dress, Wedding Dress.. Oh, I bet that Wedding Dress one is a lovely song!"

Bless her heart.

For those of you unfamiliar with his music, I highly recommend you check it out. Wedding Dress can be found both on the House Show CD (Which includes the intro) and on his She Must And Shall Go Free album. Either would be a great addition to your collections. Or both, better yet.

For those of you familiar with this particular song, snicker with me. While it is a song I very much like, Lovely is not exactly the word I would use to describe it, especially not the version of Lovely my Chief in particular was thinking of when she read off the song titles. She was thinking of flowers and lace and church bells ringing. Wedding Dress (as penned and performed by Derek, anyway) is not exactly that side of the frills and happy.

Oh, bless her little heart. (This, by the way, must be said with a very, very thick southern accent. And no, I have not yet said it out loud in any serious context. Though once I start making fun of an expression I'm more likely to translate it over into my regular vocabulary, which is rather disturbing.)

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Monday, January 24, 2005

A couple of weeks ago, I was at a college group at which the following question was posed: Would you rather get blamed for something bad that someone else did, or have someone else get the credit for something good that you did?

There were a lot of different answers or thoughts during that discussion. The gist of my own answer is that it doesn't tend to bother me too much if someone else gets the credit for something good I do. Indeed, I'd often rather that than the action go unnoticed completely. I'm capable of tooting my own horn when I have any desire to, might I add, sometimes even to my own shame. But for the most part, I really don't mind if someone else gets the credit, because MOST of the time, I am doing it for the good of the action, the well-being of the recipient, the glory of God. Not for my own credit and pride.

On the other hand, getting blamed for something someone else did, or worse, for something that didn't happen at all or that is wrong to one person and not to another.. that is painful to me, still. It's one thing to have someone start a rumor about you, many of which I'm quite familiar with. Being that I'm still a virgin and thus obviously have never been pregnant, the rumors about supposed pregnancies never bothered me much. They were so absurd that I didn't care, because anyone who knew me at all wouldn't believe them. Rumors about more believable things, if they weren't true, even tended not to bother me as much because I knew if they were true or not, and the people who mattered to me would believe me or they wouldn't, and what stance they took said a lot about how they saw me and where they belonged in my life.

When it's your boss, though, who is instigating or spreading rumors about you, or who is harassing you with them, it's more difficult. Much, much more difficult.

This week has been one of the hardest in my life. Longer-lasting than that wretched last week in Mississippi and the verbal spillage there that caused me a great amount of discomfort. This week isn't about me speaking out of turn and getting in trouble halfway because of misinformation and unfortunate circumstances but also half because of my own lack of tact and wisdom, the way that my last week in MS was. This week is about misinformation and unfortunate circumstances building up and one of the people over me balling them up into one great big ball-and-chain and running with it, dragging me along like some windless kite.

If this doesn't stop soon, you can believe that this is not a Navy of which I can be a part.

Forget if. This MUST stop soon. Every single day during and after work, I have given up hope because usually that makes the whole thing easier. And then the next day she yells at me about something else and finds whatever little shred of hope remained enough to be broken. And then some other circumstance happens to make things worse.

This weekend, when I was supposed to work to make up for the car fiasco of last weekend (and that's a whole 'nother story which I won't get into here, both the car fiasco itself and having to work to make up for it), my body could finally no longer resist the stomach virus that's been going around the base, that I've had for at least a week now and have been so entrenched in the troubles at work that I did not ask to go to medical about it because I hoped I could wait 'till Monday, wait 'till my day off, and then go and rest. But it would not wait. Saturday morning I was violently ill (as I had been all of Tuesday night/Wednesday morning, but had gotten well enough to make it to work by the time that came into question -- and with a darn good looking uniform and as decent an attitude as could be mustered on the first day back after the fiasco, mind you) well into the time it would take to get ready. So I called to tell them I'd be a bit late. When I was still violently ill an hour later, it was time to go to the hospital. Not only did the person at work I had spoken with tell the one above her that I said I couldn't get out of BED (when what I had said clearly was that I couldn't get out of the BATHROOM, but this is not the first time I've had such trouble with this particular female), but my new roommate had been asleep during the whole process and thus, when she was awoken at 8:30 to give an accounting of my whereabouts and actions of the morning, had told them what she thought had happened which was entirely different than what had happened.. (That's what I get for being a quiet and curteous roommate. Again, just an unfortunate circumstance.. my roommate intended absolutely no harm and would have told them exactly what had happened had she been aware of it. But because she wasn't and she told them what she did know, they accused HER of lying as well as me.) Anyway.. then I'm at the hospital and I'm tracked down there to be harassed about all manner of things while I'm waiting to be admitted in the ER. By this point, I'm severely dehydrated, still getting violently ill fairly often, and in the grips of nasty, nasty stomach pains that won't let up.

Along with the absurdity of pregnancy rumors, rumors about me using drugs or such have never bothered me. I drink in moderation, and use prescription or over-the-counter drugs in very extreme moderation.. that is, one 200 mg ibuprofen was sufficient enough for the worst of my headaches for a long time, and even after the pharmacy-that-is-bootcamp, I still only use them on an absolutely-as-needed basis and as rarely and minimally as possible. Apart from that, I have never even been tempted to do any illegal drugs or to abuse scrips or otc's, nor even to smoke a cigarette. Ok, yes, I've been a little jealous of how smokers get more breaks than non-smokers, and how smoker's breaks actually seem to calm them down sometimes (despite the fact that they were more jittery before any break than I'd get at any point of my worst days), but never really tempted. And I've been around drugs of all sorts plenty enough that if ever there was the temptation, there would have been the means, mind you. I have not been sheltered from the world of hiding-one's-pain-in-substance-abuse in the slightest bit. So the rumors never bothered me. Anyone who knew me would know they weren't true.

But accusations.. accusations are not rumors. And being accused outright (or by means of very explicit implication) of drug usage and alcohol abuse several times this week..

Oh, no, Nelly.. you do not know what you do at all.

And it has occured to me, yes, that some of this might be about others that I work with more than myself.. but normally if that was the case, (a) the accusations would not have taken place in private, some of them, and (b) there would have been SOME hint to that effect dropped during the private batterin- er.. I mean, conversations.

And it has occured to me (through my own deductions as well as others pointing it out) that some of this might have something to do with my potential advancement, with seeing how I handle situations or with trying to make absolutely sure that I'm clean before I'm given more power. And some of it might have to do with the fact that I requested to move off base, and some people who have moved off of this base have not stayed clean once they got free of the base lifestyle.

I wish that once I had had a civil conversation with the powers that be in which I could explain that I have been living on my own since the young sailors mentioned were in middle school, that I have been around drugs before and never been tempted nor would I give in if the temptation arose, and that I financially and in all other necessary ways can handle myself just fine living on my own -- while on the contrary, I am at an extreme disadvantage in all of those areas for as long as I remain on base. But no, they had conversations with others, with some of the ones that were in middle school when I began living on my own, or with people whose spending habits, shall we say, vary greatly from mine.

Honestly, this whole situation has made me very sad, very frustrated. I am a different person at work these days, not smiling much and not energized, and doing a darn good job but not with the same gusto as before. I am watching the dirtbags in my command get treated with the same respect and dignity as always while I am being dragged down and made absolutely miserable.

The stomach virus, surely, was worse because of the stress of this situation. My recovery from it, surely, will be slower. My health is suffering in other ways. And unfortunately, the ways of dealing with that are either making the situation go away -- and it shows no signs of doing that anytime soon -- or things like seeking counseling, which is available during working hours and thus I'd have to get permission to leave work in order to go, and the whole thing is just a big mess. Grr. Argh.

Had I not been sick this weekend, I would have worked then and had today and tomorrow off. (As it was, I was laid up in my rack the entire time except finally getting up later yesterday evening to do my laundry.) Unfortunately, I'm now the early-come-late-stayer for today and tomorrow and thus will not have any time (or energy) outside of working hours to get any of that done. Likewise the rest of this week. I've got to clean the whole office every day Wednesday through Friday, among other dumb little things that can have no purpose other than to aggrivate me and make me certain, beyond any possible doubt, not only of who is in control, but of exactly how much control they can have .. mostly in the sense of fear of taking it up the chain of command.

The military is not like the Civilian world, no. And while a couple of weeks ago, even last weekend when I was on my trip, I was selling people on it to the point they were almost ready to join themselves -- I could not recommend it for anyone that has their own work ethic (it seems easier for dirtbags, especially those not as concerned with promotion) or who is not already accustomed to military ways of life and logic-less systems.

I hope that in another week, I will be able to offer some retrospective look on why all of this happened and that it's not really so bad.. I am not so optimistic, though.

I watched Shawshank Redemption on Saturday, and that helped me feel a lot better. Perhaps I will pick up my own rock hammer somewhere.

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Monday, January 17, 2005

I am still a free spirit, I am still an independent person. The Navy was not designed for such. I like the Navy, my experiences in it, for the most part. I like having job security and financial stability and knowing that if all goes as planned (that is, without some exceptional circumstances either good or bad) I'll be in the one area for the next two and a half years or so. And yet that about the time I'm getting restless again, hey, look, I'll be moved along anyway.

But I don't like redundancy and over-accountability and not necessarily knowing all the rules but how it's possible to get in trouble for doing something you didn't know you weren't supposed to or vice versa.

I'm glad that I do not have to decide soon if I'll go officer or stay in career-wise either way or get out after my current enlistment. I would not be able to decide now. I miss civilian logic. But I am glad to be in the Navy for the time being, and I still tend to lean towards career.

I just got the clutch replaced in my car, and its cable snapped today, when I was planning on driving home from my out-of-town weekend, which means that I will have to drive back tomorrow and miss the day of work. And that can be dealt with. I'm just frustrated by the whole situation .. that the guy changed my clutch without doing anything about the cable, even though I TOLD him (because a mechanic-acquantance had already told me) that the cable was most likely what had caused it to go out in the first place .. and that I didn't know all of the rules relating to leave and liberty and to travel and to unusual situations like this one. And I know that I'm not in TROUBLE as if I had done something wrong intentionally, but I also know that for various reasons this situation is out of my hands and yet others may be upset with me about it.

Whatever. *le sigh*. My car will hopefully be fixed soon and I'll get home and I'll know better in the future.

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Sunday, January 09, 2005

Perhaps it's part of the Navy's weight-loss plan, but these blues are stinkin' itchy! And hot. But the only way I've found out about to make them less itchy is to wear one of my lightweight long-sleeved shirts underneath, which of course makes it even hotter. So I'll either lose weight by sweating it all off, or by my skin getting so irritated that it all falls off -- and since skin is supposed to be the largest organ of the body, that's gotta be worth at least a couple of lbs.

They're 75% polyester, 25% wool. Can't they make a cotton version for those of us who live in warmer climates where such a very hot uniform is not needed?

Although the utilities, which we have to wear tee-shirts under, are pretty warm too, even being cotton. So either way you go, I guess...

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Wednesday, January 05, 2005

As I was driving down to see Aleks and her family on Sunday evening, I called Ash again since we'd been playing phone tag since a little while before Christmas. He picked up, or maybe he called me back quickly -- that part is something of a blur to me now. At any rate, we finally got to talk. Ash is one of my closest friends ever, very dear to me, and his extended group of friends (especially his girlfriend, Stephanie) are dear to me as well. I miss them all. I have a picture of Stephanie on my phone from when Ash and I went on a shopping trip for her in the kid's section ('cause she's so tiny) of Target, which makes me laugh every time I look at it. Such a quirky pair, she so full of life and humor, and he a little darker yet incredibly caring.

Shortly after I first met Ash not even a year ago, he was coming to my apartment to pick up one of the bazillion extra tables I'd acquired somehow. He brought with him Breon and, I think, Dugger. Perhaps it was one of the other guys. At any rate, that's when I first met Breon .. tall, football-tackler big, with something of a short afro framing his face. Bre told me sometime later that he only had one lung, since the other had been removed due to cancer. We had a great relationship, I felt, a very playful, fun friendship that included some particular conversations on levels not usually found. For example, there's no one quite like someone who has only one lung to talk with about breathing trouble. Or someone who has had cancer with whom you can talk about death and its finer points.

His cancer came back shortly before I left for bootcamp. He spent a few days in the hospital getting treatments and then a few days in an apartment in Charlottesville recovering. I didn't make it up to see him there, though we did talk on the phone a couple of times. He was back by the time I was going to be able to make the one hour drive, so we had lots of quality time, his newly-shaven self and I.

I saw him a couple of times, too, while I was home on leave. And we talked once or twice after I got down here.

Ash told me during our conversation on Sunday that Bre's other lung was having complications, so he had been hospitalized. Soon after, he developed pnuemonia. And on Wednesday, December 29th, he passed away.

I didn't quite cry that night, when Ash told me, mostly because I was on a very dangerous stretch of I-95 through South FL, and we talked about some great times with Bre that made me laugh instead. But when I was driving home Monday evening, I was thinking about the funeral that would take place Tuesday in Lynchburg. The funeral that I could not attend, the friend I had not been able to see during his last two months or that final week in the hospital. The friend I had not been able to say goodbye to. I pictured him, then, in a coffin. I pictured Ash and the guys around his grave. And I cried then. And I have cried a few times since. I was not as close to Bre as the Halo-guys were. (Although it seems almost every guy I know plays Halo, and many in large groups, this was the group that introduced me to it in person.. the group on whose TVs I first watched the game played. Rare was the night we were all hanging out at Ash's and there wasn't a game of Halo at some point. So, to me, these are the Halo-guys.) They had known him for years and they all had that male-bonding thing I could never be a part of. But he was, as he liked to be called, my "Big, Black Teddy Bear". He was my Bre, the chubby-cheeked smiley guy who could do something silley to playfully aggrivate me, and then beg me not to take out his other lung. "I've only got one!" he'd say, and we'd verbally spar in the sense of trash talk and silleyness. And then I'd sit on the couch between him and Ash and Stephanie and we'd all watch a movie together, and he'd tell all the Halo-guys that I was his girl. "Don't mess with her," he'd warn. "She's my girl!" And I would ask him how much of a threat that was from a kid with one lung.

I knew.. we all knew that he was sick. And that it had been getting worse again.

Ash's brother, Freeman, had given Bre a large quantity of Jones Soda for Christmas. (I was trying to remember the other day -- I think that the guys already loved Jones before I met them, which was one of the reasons we hit it off so well. But, since I've been such a spreader of the joy that is Jones Soda for so long, getting plenty of friends - old and new alike - hooked on the colorful substances within the classy and changing bottles, it's possible they heard about it through me and were wise enough to listen. I'm pretty sure, though, that they were already fans.) Apparently, Bre's last day included a request to his father to bring all the Jones to him at the hospital, and then he dropped all the sour patch kids and other such candy he'd received into the sodas, and drank them all in one day. What a way to go. I love my Jones, but I'm pretty sure I'd only drink that many of them when I was preparing to leave this world, too.

Bre, I miss you. I missed you since I moved away, since I left for bootcamp and again since I got here. And now I miss you even more, knowing when I go back to the Burg, you won't be there in person. I'll bring flowers to your gravesite, and we'll drink some Jones in your honor. And as Ash suggested, every December 29th we'll have a Bre memorial party in which we all drink lots of Jones Soda and eat lots of candy.

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Hippie: (after hearing Max wants to avoid the draft)You still have options man.
Max: Yeah, jail or Canada and they both suck. I mean I could never come home, so what is it, it's a choice of a 6x4 cell or an endless wasteland of frozen tundra.
Hippie: Montreal is cool.
Max:Man, they speak French there.
Groupie: So learn French. Learn French or die.
-- Across the Universe

"So how do i do normal
The smile i fake the permanent way
Cue cards and fix it kits
Can't you tell - I'm not myself
-- Frou Frou, Hear Me Out

"It's been known for a train to jump its track. It's ok, so you'll know, most times they come back. It's ok to lose your life, when you finally see your birth. It's ok to say, "I love you," and figure sometimes it's gonna hurt.
Don't forget to bring kindness, don't forget to say thanks. Don't forgot to spend your love, no it will break the bank. Don't forget to bring some empathy, for the saints and the sinners. Don't forget to bring encouragement. Yeah, we're all just beginners."
-- Bill Mallonee, Bank

"As a comedian, you have to start the show strong and you have end the show strong. Those are the two key elements. You can't be like pancakes, all exciting at first, but then by the end you're sick of 'em!"
-- (The late) Mitch Hedburg

"Hey, this is weird! I ordered one frozen yogurt and they gave me two. You don't happen to like frozen yogurt, do you?" "I love it!" "You're kidding! What a crazy random happenstance!"
-- Dr. Horrible's Sing-Along Blog

"Only one more trip," said a gallant seaman,
As he kissed his weeping wife,
Only one more bag of the golden treasure
And 'twill last us all through life.
Then I'll spend my days in my cosy cottage
And enjoy the rest I've earned;
But alas! poor man! For he sail'd commander
Of the ship that never returned.
Did she never return? She never returned,
Her fate, it is yet unlearned,
Though for years and years there were fond ones watching
Yet the ship she never returned.
--The Ship that Never Returned, Henry Clay Work

"It was Flannery O'Connor who said that 'grace must wound before it heals.' Her words help me to separate what is most true about life from the things we want to be true. We want life to be painless. True grace is a hard sell because in order for the human heart to understand forgiveness and love, it must first experience darkness and isolation. A life lived under the rule of grace is a life of need which allows us to receive an appreciate the gift of the giver of grace. This is why we will always have the poor with us; this is why God will not allow us to ignore injustice; this is why we are called to a life we cannot handle alone, which can and will break us in the effort to live it -- because grace must wound before it heals."
-- Justin McRoberts

Regarding 2007:
"the year has gone quick, but most of the days haven't"

Should auld acquaintance be forgot,
and never brought to mind ?
Should auld acquaintance be forgot,
And days o' auld lang syne

For auld lang syne, my dear,
for auld lang syne,
we’ll tak a cup o’ kindness yet,
for auld lang syne.

And surely ye’ll be your pint-stoup !
And surely I’ll be mine !
And we’ll tak a cup o’ kindness yet,
for auld lang syne.

We twa hae run about the braes,
and pou’d the gowans fine ;
But we’ve wander’d mony a weary fit,
sin’ auld lang syne.

We twa hae paidl’d in the burn,
frae morning sun till dine ;
But seas between us braid hae roar’d
sin’ auld lang syne.

And there’s a hand, my trusty fiere !
And gies a hand o’ thine!
And we’ll tak a right gude-willie-waught,
for auld lang syne.
--Robert Burns, "Auld Lang Syne"

I thought Christmas Day would never come. But it's here at last, so Mom and Dad, the waiting's finally done. And you gotta get up, you gotta get up, you gotta get up, it's Christmas morning.

Did my sister get a baby doll? Did my brother get his bike? Did I get that red wagon, the kind that makes you fly? Oh, I hope there'll be peace on Earth, and I know there's goodwill towards men, on account o' that baby born in Bethlehem.
--Rich Mullins, You Gotta Get Up (Christmas Song)

O little town of Bethlehem,
How still we see thee lie,
Above thy deep and dreamless sleep
The silent stars go by;
Yet in thy dark streets shineth
The everlasting light
The hopes and fears of all the years
Are met in thee tonight.

O Holy Child of Bethlehem,
Descend to us we pray,
Cast out our sin, and enter in,
Be born in us today.
We hear the Christmas angels,
The great glad tidings tell,
O come to us, abide with us,
Our Lord Emmanuel.
--L.H.Redner, "O Little Town of Bethlehem"

Walk humbly, son
Walk humbly, now
And cherish every step
For a life well spent
On this earth we're lent
Will be marked by the void you have left

May you conquer (not curse) challenges
May you hold back the dark like a dam
May you lead your life with lion's roar
May you leave it like a lamb

Don't await rewards for your good deeds
A reward won't make them good
Don't await judgment of any foes
They'll receive just what they should

When you find the axis of this world
Don't tread too far inside
Run away as far as you think you can
Be well and enjoy the ride

Walk humbly, son
And store your pride
When you need strength later on
For your life's work will be judged if earth
Is saddened when you have gone

Walk humbly, son
Walk humbly, how
And forget not where you are from
May you go further than those before
And provide for those to come

Will you walk humbly, Son?
--Eddie From Ohio, Walk Humbly, Son

Strings of lights above the bed
Curtains drawn and a glass of red
All I ever get for Christmas is blue

Saxaphone on the radio
Recorded 40 years ago
All I ever get for Christmas is blue

When you play my song
Play it slowly
play it like I'm sad and lonely....

Weatherman says it's miserable
But the snow is so beautiful
All I ever get for Christmas is blue

It would take a miracle
To get me out to a shopping mall
All I really want for Christmas is you
--Over the Rhine, from Snow Angels

"In a little while I'll feel better
Gonna travel around the world
Gonna see it all

Gonna go to Paris, maybe Rome
But I'll feel better miles away from home,
Gotta figure some things out

So sell all my things, I'm not coming home
There's nothing there to keep me there
Just heartache and panic and worries and things that'll bring me down
My head feels much clearer being here

In a little while I'll feel better
Gonna spill my heart to every stranger in every town
I'll visit castles in Ireland, have some fella play the violin and play a song for me

So sell all my things, I'm not coming home
There's nothing there to keep me there
Just heartache and panic and worries and things that'll bring me down
My head feels much clearer being here
--Rosie Thomas, Sell All My Things, from Only With Laughter Can You Win

"Please tell me once again that You love me. That You love me. Please tell me once again that I matter to You and You really care. Please tell me once again that You're with me, forever. It's not that I could ever doubt you, I just love the way it sounds. I just love the way it sounds."
--This Train, I think it's from a song on Emperor's New Band.

"Every once in a while, a bannerzen posts."
--Me, during the 2002 Boredeys at Cornerstone Festival

"7:30. What kind of people have to be at work at 7:30?"
--Mr. Holland's Opus

have you seen my love
is he far away
have you seen the one for me
whose face lights up my day
i won't let one boy steal a kiss
or call me his instead i'll wait
for his voice to call out to mine
and carry these daydreams away
have you seen my love
is he far away
have you seen the one for me
who won't let me get away
please tell him that i'm
waiting for him praying for him
night and day for now i'll be a
lonely girl just longing for his sweet embrace
--Rosie Thomas, Have You Seen My Love, from When We Were Small

Traveling is significant because it takes so much effort. Either you're going to some place you love, or you're leaving some place you love. Usually it's both.
--Friend of a friend of a friend

I think I have Bond's ability to get into trouble but not his ability to get out of it. Someday I'll be in some foreign country with 5 thugs with automatic rifles pointed at me, and I'll just.... fart
--Peter, my twin brother, while we were talking about bicycle accidents.

"You had no alternative .. We must work in the world. The world is thus." --- "No .. Thus have we made the world."
-- The Mission (a movie)

The summer ends and we wonder where we are And there you go, my friends, with your boxes in your car And you both look so young And last night was hard, you said You packed up every room And then you cried and went to bed But today you closed the door and said "We have to get a move on. It's just that time of year when we push ourselves ahead, We push ourselves ahead."
And it was cloudy in the morning And it rained as you drove away And the same things looked different It's the end of the summer It's the end of the summer, When you move to another place
--Dar Williams, End of the Summer

Looking out the bedroom at this snowy TV.. ever since commencement, no one's asking 'bout me. But I bet before the night falls, I could catch the late bus.. take small provisions and this Beethoven bust. I could find work in the outskirts of the city, eat some fish on the way.. befriend an old dog for a roadside pal, find a nice couch to stay -- a pull-out sofa, if you please!"
--Eddie From Ohio, Fifth of July.

Ooh! Get me away from here I'm dying
Play me a song to set me free
Nobody writes them like they used to
So it may as well be me
Here on my own now after hours
Here on my own now on a bus
Think of it this way
You could either be successful or be us --belle and sebastian, Get Me Away From Here, I'm Dying

"The trouble with folks like Brownie is they hold their life in like a bakebean fart at a Baptist cookout and only let it slip out sideways a little at a time when they think there's nobody noticing. Now that's the last thing on earth the Almighty intended. He intended all the life a man's got inside him, he should live it out just as free and strong and natural as a bird."
--Leo Bebb in Frederick Buechner's "Treasure Hunt"

"Life is a phantasmagoria .. It is a pell-mell of confused and tumultuous scenes. We try in vain to find a purpose - to bring an order, a unity to life. I suppose that is the appeal of art. Art is the blending of the real and the unreal, the conquering of nature. It is real enough for it to reflect life, but has the unity that life lacks."
--D., in a recent email.

"in time memories fade.
senses numb.
one forgets how it feels to have loved completely."
--Pedro the Lion, The Longest Winter

I've always had this feeling about Patty that she's complex and intriguing...I like Patty alot. She's got a good heart and tells terrible squirrel jokes.
--Julie, from her blog on 4/8, after a large group of friends from all over gathered at my house for the weekend.

"Try to remember that world-weariness isn't necessarily a bad thing. In the book of Mark, I think its Mark, Jesus looks at a blind man and sighs. Jesus sighed before even telling the man he would be healed. He sighed, and I'm not sure that there's a much more human expression of frustration than this. Faced with the horrid picture of a cursed earth and looking into the white eyes of a man blind from the day he was born, He sighed. The Creator of the universe in human form was sad "of the evils of this world," the world He created. Your Creator sighed for you in the same way before He healed you and made you His."
-- Jesse, in response to my Weltschmerz blog entry

"After the last tear falls
After the last secret's told
After the last bullet tears through flesh and bone
After the last child starves
And the last girl walks the boulevard
After the last year that's just too hard
There is love

-- Andrew Peterson, After the Last Tear Falls

"when you most need people, you don't need perfection - just to know someone gives a damn"
--Jamie, during a recent IM conversation

How will you answer when, years from now, your child asks you: 'Mom or Dad, what did you do to combat the evil of squirrel hazing?'"
--From Dave Barry's Blog

"My brother's always [telling me], 'You should be more mysterious--boys like that.' But I'm not good at that. It would just make me more uncomfortable."
--Rosie Thomas, in an interview with Kathleen Wilson

"Loners want to kill you, but not for any particular reason, and they'd probably like you if they weren't being guided by the violent voices in their head."
--The non-box result from a random quiz I took today. (No, I frankly can't recommend this quiz site, but if you're really bored and you're not seeking to remain pure, go right ahead..)

"No one wants to oil a snake these days!"
-- Emmett Otter, Emmett Otter's Jug Band Christmas (Found under the Specials section of the TV section of the Henson website.)

Jamie: "I am one of the greatest criminal masterminds in the world."
Her mom: "We're all safe."

-- Jamie Bevill and her mother during Christmas-Decorating dinner, December 20, 2002

"and if i were a jetson
i'd throw out all my shoes
i'd set up cans for friends
to dump their shoes senseless shoes
a pioneer of callouses
lordy-be and bless my soul
i'd be a barefoot spaceman
the first you'd ever know"
-- Eddie From Ohio, If I were a Flinstone

"The best way to have God's will for your life is to have no will of your own!"
-- Charlene Potterbaum, Thanks Lord, I Needed That!

"Generations circle and each one atones. The sins of the father are seperate from my own. In Pilgrim's Progress, it's forgiveness that makes whole, and as time levels and consoles, I place the daisies in your bowl."
--Jan Krist, Daisies in Your Bowl

"For a moment he just stared at her. Then, with an urf-urf-urf of laughter, he turned back to the controls."
"They made good time, despite the lingering tenderness of Mara's ankle and the distractions inherent in a faceful of itch."
-- Timothy Zahn, Star Wars: Heir to the Empire

"It's on the internet.. so, then, it must be true."
-- Five Iron Frenzy, The Untimely Death of Brad

"Be at least as interested in what people can become as you are in what they have been."
-- Steve Griffin

Blessed be the rock stars!"
--Justin Dillon Stevens

Get up for the shower.. wash and scrub and scour every part as if a cleaner man could better bear the shame..
--The Waiting, Look At Me

"She was eating gnarly amounts of calcium."
--Samuel Hernandez

Homeless man to girl trying to give him money: "No, thanks, ma'am. I never work on Sundays."
-- Amilie, the movie.

"Wow! I never thought I'd need a radar-guided spatula!"
-- Larryboy, Larryboy and the Angry Eyebrows

"Isn't it great that I articulate? Isn't it grand that you can understand? ... I can talk, I can talk, I can talk!"
-- Wilbur, Charlotte's Web (the movie)

I believe that people laugh at coincidence as a way of relegating it to the realm of the absurd and of therefore not having to take seriously the possibility that there is a lot more going on in our lives than we either know or care to know... I suspect that part of it, anyway, is that every once and so often we hear a whisper from the wings that goes something like this: "You've turned up in the right place at the right time. You're doing fine. Don't ever think that you've been forgotten.
(and in another entry)
When we close our eyes to the deep needs of other people whether they live on the streets or under our own roof -- and when we close our eyes to our own deep need to reach out to them -- we can never be fully at home anywhere.
(and in another entry)
Maybe at the heart of all our travelling is the dream of someday, somehow, getting Home.
(and in another entry)
The place God calls you to is the place where your deep gladness and the world's deep hunger meet. -- Frederick Buechner, Wishful Thinking: A Seeker's ABC

When I lay these questions before God I get no answer. But a rather special sort of "No answer." It is not the locked door. It is more like a silent, certainly not uncompassionate, gaze. As though He shook His head not in refusal but waiving the question. Like, "Peace, child; you don't understand."
-- C.S. Lewis, A Grief Observed

CCM: You've spoken a lot more about crying than I ever thought you would.
JK: Oh, I've cried a lot. Truthfully, I've cried a lot more this past year than I've probably cried in five years.
CCM: Why?
JK: It's fun to feel.
-- An Interview with Jennifer Knapp in the January Issue of CCM Magazine

"Youth is not a period of time. It is a state of mind, a result of the will, a quality of the imagination, a victory of courage over timidity, of the taste for adventure over the love of comfort. A man doesn't grow old because he has lived a certain number of years. A man grows old when he deserts his ideal. The years may wrinkle his skin, but deserting his ideal wrinkles his soul. Preoccuptaions, fears, doubts, and despair are the enemies which slowly bow us toward earth and turn us into dust before death. You will remain young as long as you are open to what is beautiful, good, and great; receptive to the messages of other men and women, of nature and of God. If one day you should become bitter, pessimistic, and gnawed by despair, may God have mercy on your old man's soul."
-- General Douglas MacArthur

""Don't go matchmaking for me, Ilse," said Emily wit a faint smile... "I feel in my bones that I shall achieve old-maidenhood, which is an entirely different thing from having old-maidenhood thrust upon you."
-- Emily, from the Emily books by L. M. Montgomery

"I wish Aunt Elizabeth would let me go to Shrewsbury, but I fear she never will. She feels she can't trust me out of her sight because my mother eloped. But she need not be afraid I will ever elope. I have made up my mind that I will never marry. I shall be wedded to my art"
-- Emily, from the Emily books by L. M. Montgomery

"Tomorrow seems like a long ways away. But it will come, just like any other day... Deep inside, where the wounded creatures hide, I am afraid. Maybe I got lost somewhere along the way somehow. Please rescue me... Yea, though I walk through the valley of the dark shadow of death, I will fear no evil. For you are with me... Though I fear, though I am afraid, You are with me. Though I'm angry, tired, broken down and confused, You are with me. Though I sin like I've never sinned before, lose myself right out an open door, You are with me."
-- Waterdeep, You Are With Me

"The invisible people agreed about everything. Indeed most of their remarks were the sort it would not be easy to disagree with: "What I always say is, when a chap's hungry, he likes some victuals," or "Getting dark now; always does at night," or even "Ah, you've come over the water. Powerful wet stuff, ain't it?"" -- C. S. Lewis, The Voyage of the Dawn Treader

"When People object... that if Jesus was God as well as Man, then He had an unfair advantage which deprives Him for them of all value, it seems to me as if a man struggling in the water should refuse a rope thrown to him by another who had one foot on the bank, saying, "Oh but you had an unfair advantage." It is because of His advantage that He can help."
-- C. S. Lewis

"But, you know, as a Christian, one of the big questions you always ask yourself is, "So we believe in Jesus, we believe in the teachings of the church, but what does that look like when it's lived out?" Because surely, one of the things that Jesus said that I think we often overlook is, "The person who hears my words and does them is like the wise man who built his house on the rock." He didn't say "the person who hears my words and thinks about 'em" or "whoever hears my words and agrees with it." But he said, "Whoever hears it and does it."
-- Rich Mullins, during a radio interview, as quoted in An Arrow Pointing to Heaven

"find that which gives you breath and grants you more to give
because life ends not in death but with what dies inside while we live"
--Christopher Williams, Breathe

"I have packed all my belongings. I don't belong here anymore. This pair of sandles, one pack to carry, this old guitar and this tattered old Bible. And I know I won't be afraid. 'cause I know, I know Home is where You are."
--Dog Named David, Heavenly Rain

"Open up your weepy eyes, everyone is dancing. Angels peer through sweet disguise, through a fire of cleansing.
--My Brother's Mother, Finest Hour

"Long hair, no hair; Everybody, everywhere: Breathe Deep, breathe deep the Breath of God!"
-- Lost Dogs, Breathe Deep

"You may be bruised and torn and broken, but you're Mine!"
-- Asiam, Relentless Love

"I don't deserve to speak, and they don't deserve to hear it. It's makin' me believe that it's not about me."
-- Justin McRoberts, The Story Stands Alone

"Kickin' against these goads sure did cut up my feet. Didn't your hands get bloody as you washed them clean?"
-- Caedmon's Call, Here I am Again

"They say God blessed us with plenty. I say you?re blessed with poverty. ?Cause you never stop to wonder whether earth is just a little better than the Land of the Free"
-- Andrew Peterson, Land of the Free

"Computers will know everything in the 21st century. They'll be like me in the 20th century."
-- Crabby Road