26 September 2004

Mosquito madness

I decided to take my "ward" out to play soccer this evening and the invading insect army made relentless rear and frontal attacks on us. We attempted to flee the enemy but were unsuccesful. Upon returning to HQ I proceded to seek out repellant (DEET free) so we could get a wee bit of a soccer lesson. Still these mosquitoes kept up the harassment although hardly any bites. All the rain must have spawned this infiltration! Bother the rain!
So what is there to look forward to this week? Nothing to my knowledge but I'll let you know as the time arrives. It won't be as wet hopefully. In another week I plan to return to my ancestral home at Lehigh.

Crash bang

On Friday I found myself be flung over the handlebars of the C-200 as I attempted to avoid a puddle.
I rode out of the 25th Street tunnel on my way home. I noticed the standing water and desired to avoid going through. I veered left as I exited the tunnel but caught a mud slick. I lost control of the bicycle. I could not regain control and I flew over the handlebars. In the process the rear tire bent severely. Fortunately no spokes were broken. My body was 99% uninjuried. I sustained a scrap on my left side of my left foot.
It has been over a year since my injury crash at 17th and 25th. It might be in the files somewhere. The crash has not affected my running which I continue to do.

25 September 2004


Robin Mark visited Fargo and signed a few autographs. Posted by Hello

Making a tent

Robin Mark is a musician that inspires me. This Irishman from Belfast has written some excellent songs [I cover a few] and could command some broader fame and fortune but has a keen point of view concerning life. He holds that our work [vocation if you will] is and should not be separated from our spirtual work [ministry]. Our service to God does not happen just on Sundays in church. Our service to God should be devotion- our entire lives. We can serve God in our workplace, the marketplace, the school. Literally everywhere because God is everywhere and not confined to a building.
I am encouraged by the fact that Robin works a regular job most of the week [a noise consultant?] and only has church responsibility one day a week. I like it. I'd do the same. I enjoy work and meeting people.




24 September 2004

Upon the green shores

I came across these photos from a Downtown at 808 trek to Ireland. Seems like some shots from Dublin, the Wicklow Mountains and possibly Killkenny or Tara (at least somewhere 75km from Dublin). Take note in one shot of a guy with the Liverpool shirt. I think my friend Aric may have a similar shirt. One exceptional shot is the one with the sign saying "no entry except on Sunday."
The 808 crew are a church from Goshen, Indiana. Their name is derived from the time location they meet- Goshen Theater Downtown 8:08 PM (Saturdays). They now also meet on Sunday at 10 AM [compromise? ;) ].

20 September 2004

Legendary soccer manager passes on

Brian Clough dead at 69.
Bobby Robertson, Alex Ferguson, Matt Busby, Bob Paisley et cetera will all pay their respects to the possibly the meanest, toughest manager there ever was. The dead guys (Busby and Paisley) will probably give a glum nod from the nether regions of the football dead. I don't even know if Paisley is dead.

'I want no epitaphs of profound history and all that type of thing. I contributed - I would hope they would say that, and I would hope somebody liked me.' - Brian Clough

Anyways Clough is probably most noted for his mangerical career at Nottingham Forest. In the 1979 and 1980 he brought Forest to the top of the European football champions pinnacle. He ruffled more than a few feathers during his time but made scores of supporters happy. It is unfortunate that he turned to drinking and thus a few years ago needed a liver transplant. He retired from managing in 1993 after Forest fell out of the Premier League.
What strikes me about this figuire is his ablilty to motivate average players to play beyond what critics would believe. He possibly beat it out of his squads. To his record he mostly succeeded and probably influenced a slough of managers to follow his example.
Here's to you Clough- you painted some unique hues into the history of this beautiful and simple game.

17 September 2004

He keeps running

My running continues but I have nothing to run for. No marathon this season. Neither is there a half marathon planned. I keep telling myself "this is good for you" and "your looking good" to motivate myself to go out.
Once I get into the running rhythm things change. I turn into the endurance runner I never was. I actually feel good.
My workouts have been averaging around 45 minutes. Occasionally I would go over an hour. Mostly because of my work schedule I have stopped running at night. Almost everyday I am out on the roads. Only recently have I taken some extra rest days.
The only possible road race for me this season looks like the Red River Run 15k which I won my age group a few years ago. It's put on by the local running club and is a smaller race.
Some rumors have been arising concerning a Fargo Marathon but still seems afar off.

16 September 2004

Heart of worship to the art of worship

Last night started a workshop to train worshippers and worship musicians. It went very well. We did some practical things like work on technique [someone wanted to learn shaker and I was challenging Aric with some bass grooves] and learn new songs. My plan is to have one set of songs the group will all work with during the course of the year then add a few here and there to the repetoire. I really want people to come and learn to play instruments excellently and worship God.
Plans for other sessions include crafting the set, hymns, improvisation and playing in the Spirit.

14 September 2004

Icognito politico

In a strange turn of events I have been reading about the band U2. A few weeks ago I picked up an older biography of the group which I mentioned in an earlier post. I then came across a spiritual bit them in a book Segue gave me: Faith, God, and Rock n Roll by Mark Joseph. "Religion should not inform our politics" is a quote attributed to Bono (Paul Hewson to Dubliners) which bugs me. Although I sort of doubt Bono believes this since trying to pin down anything concrete on U2's spirituality has been vague to ethereal. [note: All You Can't Leave Behind nows seems more spiritual now than ever.] However, the quote is a springboard for a ponderous journey concerning the post-modern era we dwell in.
If religion should not inform our politics- which I am defining as opinions and thoughts on life issues - then what should? Emotions?
If religion is suppose to inform us how to live right, honor God, serve others then why does politics need to be reserved for another sphere. If it is not so - religion informing politics- then politics and therefore government is dead ( or anarchy). Every man should do as he wish. Definitions will cease to exist. And most assuredly justice will not be fair. The powerful and cunning will exert their wills upon us - which is exactly what post-modernism wants to escape.
Is it all bad to have something that governs our behaviors to keep us from the heart of darkness inside which will devour freedom and enslave us.
Now that's a pretty weighty post. Religion will affect politics. It is not always a clear cut choice either. Competing solutions can be equally valid according to relgious views.

09 September 2004

It was not swimming

I took an abbreviated bike camping trip this Labor Day weekend. I could regret it but instead I will look on the bright side.
Rainy, rainy, rainy. I should have gone elsewhere. It rained the morning I left. It rained when I arrived. It appeared it would rain again as I left the Chippewa.
Usually when I do this kind of camping it is dry. An occasional shower may pass but mostly the time in the wilderness is dry.
Challenging as it became, I did enjoy the adventure. For one I did not like the established campsite- too close to people. I continued down the trail on my bike. I rode up some incredible steap inclines and had a scare going down since my brake pads were wet. Then a marsh consumed the trail and I had to seek for shelter as rain increased in volume.
Well, I found a spot off a game trail and immediately improvised a shelter then tried to keep most of my supplies dry. I succeeded at only the former. It rained steady into the evening. Only once did the rain let up enough to provide an opportunity to pitch the tent. Fortunately the tent was considerable dry.
After 8am the next day the weather improved. The sun even shone to make it much more happier.
An adage I am taking up - if you reach an impasse, make it an adventure.


03 September 2004

X-celling

After 2 drug tests and 3 weeks of waiting, I begun my new long term stint at Xcel Energy this week. At last I have been placed in a challenging job. I hardly know how to do anything in this position. The renumeration is not bad either.
My primary function entails billing data analysis. From a slew of meter readings I must determine whether the energy bill is acceptable or needs servicing. Other options include tampered meters, shut offs, cancel bills, and zero reads.
So far so good. They even have a locker room where I can change after I bike to work. Right now it is a real long haul on bike. The Main Avenue and 25th intersection re-constuction impedes the quicker route. I loop around to downtown then wind through the subdued light industrial areas west of University but south 7th Ave. I am hoping they finish the Main and 25th intersection by the end of September. As for now I will be content with a good workout.

01 September 2004

A little win(e)ing tonight

Where has the summer gone? It just returned to Fargo. The temperatures roamed into the 80s today. I think my roommates even turned on the AC for a few hours.
This evening we celebrated my roommate's birthday. Although it really is not the official birth certificate day, we celebrate at this time every year for the spiritual significance. Tonight's assemblage featured wine tasting. Whites, rosas, a red, and Lucky Leaf were some of the styles we partook. The guests rated the wines by sight, smell, taste, and overall quality. Segolaj, an Italian rosa, appealed to the most. I think I liked it but I have been spoiled by Kosher Passover wine, no thanks to Mogen David!
We also enjoyed some homemade Tiramisù- a spectacular desert of Italian origin (the name means "pick me up").