Category Archives: whatever

whatever doesn’t fit anywhere else

the journey

The journey changes us. Foucault said that when he wrote a book, he didn’t know beforehand what he would conclude. Writing a book, living a life is a journey of discovery.

Our life is like that. What we do, where we go, how we spend our time changes us. What we conclude is not what we imagined in the first place. At that time our imagination is not rich enough to inform our dreams, or our goals.

We should avoid limiting the outcome of our journey by impoverished notions of the future. Life makes a way of its own, and living to our best makes it possible to relish the results.

I just finished watching the movie The Way with Martin Sheen. A reluctant and disengaged father who begins a journey in his son’s stead. The movie is a journey, and even with the expected plot of meeting people and conflict, tells the story we need to hear, that life makes a way. Our commitments and ideas all find a place, and we are changed by the journey.

I also thought that the greatest scientists of our age stand in awe of the majesty of the creation. Lord take their worship of the miracle of your creation in earnest and redeem them. They stand with the thankful ones, even if they oppose your people because of the errors of their predecessors.

why did I look at my blog?

I clicked the link to my blog hoping to find something new there. I thought, dang it, this is not Twitter where something surprising may turn up. This is my blog. If something new is going to turn up it will have to be me that does it. I’m leaving now.

i broke my glasses today

The screen I am looking at is fuzzy because I am looking through glasses that were too weak for me four years ago. I rubbed the best and longest lasting glasses on my shirt today and the connecter between the two lenses broke. Tape didn’t help. Where is Hermione when I need “occulous reparo.” It’s ten thirty in the evening Sunday. I just finished watching Stargate Universe. The writing is better later in this season. They’ve met aliens and landed on a planet that was created by aliens. Still a lot of personal drama, but the characters are getting more believable as the show goes along.

I spent some time reading “The Reason For God” by Timothy Keller this last week. I find myself agreeing with him in many ways. As it has become ordinary with every book I read now, there is always the inner critic forcing an evaluation on the material. Obviously Keller is not trying to comprehend all the end results of the arguments. He doesn’t cover everything, he doesn’t intend to do so. Still the book is really clear and easy to read. The arguments are easy to follow and the problems are ones we do face with some regularity.

I am thinking of the theology class in the fall I am teaching. It is the first seated class in a few years. I don’t want to waste this opportunity piling a truck load of crap on the students. What I really want is to provide for them a good reason for making the project of theology their own, for finding a way of integrating concepts of God into their ordinary life.


Is it possible to derive democracy from the Bible? If it is, then it should be easy enough to permit freedom in others that doesn’t impinge either on my freedom, or on the stability of society. If it isn’t possible, then why should Christians move toward its defense? Or, laterally, is every effort to “Christianize” government an attempt to move away from democracy?

bank trauma now healing

On the 14th of August I received notification that my credit line had been reduced to $500. OK, now, I don’t often use that card, but it is important to have it for school, etc. The whole thing started in August last year when I started my checking account with Bank of America. During that transaction, I cancelled three previous BoA credit cards that had accumulated through BoA’s acquisition of previous banks I had credit cards with. None of those cards were in active use. Here’s the trick. They never stop associating those accounts with the original owner of the cards for record-keeping purposes.

So, when I signed on to my online account, two of those cards were showing as active as part of my overall banking portfolio. Now, to make a long story short, I used the current card for overseas travel, and paid it off online. The problem is that I didn’t credit the correct account, which didn’t show up as an option. I figured, if you click a button that says “pay this” it should enable you to pay it. Well it paid one of the “defunct” accounts. I didn’t know anything was wrong until the bank notified me that my payment was delinquent. OK, so in the month between when I paid the wrong account and their credit department squared the deal, I accrued a small amount of interest that was attributed to the correct new card. I didn’t know that because it showed up after the mistake had been corrected. I learned how to stop showing the “defunct” credit accounts from an Online Person.

Well, it is now well into April, all the school bills had been paid, and I threw the bank’s cards and checkbook into the drawer for the summer. In August, I am notified that my credit limit has been reduced and that the account is delinquent. OK, so I mope for 9 days then pay the small sum due. But dang it, it went into the “defunct” account again. So, I call the bank and they tell me to show up at the store. I show up and I am told that they cannot fix the problem, that I must call the Online Banking department. So, the count starts: first call, first person. Visit to the bank, second person (who can’t help me), second person calls Online Banking for me; talk to third person who cannot help me because I am not in front of my computer, and the second person is no longer able to sign in to online banking as a customer any more because of security issues. Third person says good bye. I go home and call fourth person in Online Banking, who starts to analyze my problem. I get disconnected. I call again, and talk to the fifth person who can’t help me, but says I have to talk to Online Bill Pay person. I talk to Online Bill Pay person, person six, who helps me configure the account correctly to delete the remaining vestiges of the “defunct” credit account and add the correct account. Funny that the wrong account is there automatically and the right account has to be added on. The Online Bill Pay person, person six, says she cannot fix the thing that started this problem and directs me to the Credit Card person, number seven. The credit card person patiently listens to my story, and it is with her that I learn the credit accounts never are and cannot be deleted. No one has yet answered me why the ‘defunct, cancelled” accounts automatically show up in Online Banking. But person seven still cannot fix my problem. She points me to the Credit department. Person eight is a “credit analyst.” He actually understands the problem as all the previous individuals did, but can actually do something about it. He fixed the interest accrued in April-August and reset my account to the correct credit line. All is forgiven, all is forgotten. All is well, I am done.

I will make a copy of this and give it to the bank guy, person two, so he can understand how frustrating this is for the customer. I don’t blame any of the persons in the above list. The system is built that way. I’ve spent a total of about 4 hours on this. Enough!

UPDATE!! October 8, 2009

The bank now says that I owe this account $11.51. They’ve screwed it up again. I think I’ll just call in and say this card has been stolen.

some weeks are curious

I had every intention of working on my dissertation this week, but while, not precisely distracted, found it difficult to actually take the steps required to make it that far. I did work on a paper for SPS (Society for Pentecostal Studies) that was requested just last week because of a dropout of one presentation. And I did read a few pages of Foucault, but in general, I didn’t move forward on my “real” work. That’s OK. I met an interesting person (see i met a rainbow), had a ~good few days at work, and spent some time with my wife. I did read some, but for the most part I was on low-productivity.

I did this on Feb 20 2009. Seems right now. bye, into the ether…