Friday, February 29, 2008

why I do not like barack obama

I do not like barack obama. I feel like among my friends, this makes me unique, which is probably a big reason why I continue to not like barack obama. and, like all of my decisions, this opinion is based on a lot of extensive research and study. and of course, my personal relationship with mr. barack obama.

Up until about two weeks ago, I had only heard barack obama speak once, and I think that one time lasted less than 3hree minutes, and it was on television, at somebody else’s house because I don’t have a television because I am pretentious and awesome. He had a nice talking voice. And from his pictures, he seemed to have a nice haircut, and oprah likes him. And I understand that mr. obama has written a book. that sounds nice. And I also heard that obama tried some drugs back in the day, another positive, especially for all the republicans out there. And so I thought, “I must meet this barack obama”

So a few days ago, I hopped in my car and drove to pueblo, indiana, where barack was going to be addressing a small gathering of migrant students on the exquisite benefits of voting for him. I wasn’t considered a “migratory student” so I was kept outside of the building, but I found a tree that I climbed and when I squinted, and when the sun was just right, and when the clouds parted, I could see barack obama, standing there, talking about how awesome he was.

And let me tell you, it really was a little awesome. He was surrounded by 14 year old girls, half of whom had fainted, the other half were getting ready to faint. There were some boys in the room, and one of them raised his hand to ask a question, and barack ignored him, which I appreciated because the boys hand was blocking the view from more girls who were about to faint and hit the floor. Man those girls fell hard.

Anyway, after about 7 minutes and 38 seconds, barack obama asked if anyone had any questions, and then left the room before anybody could ask any. I thought “I like this guy”.

I knew he was heading to the car to travel to his next meeting (a town hall meeting at the recently renovated VA hospital), and I knew I would not be let into the next meeting because I was neither a veteran or a hospital, so I made my move.

“barack!” I yelled out.

He pretended not to hear me.

“barack, hey guy, remember me?! BTM? class of ’97?”

He pretended not to hear me.

“barack, want to see one of my nipples?”

I was about 15 yards away from barack, and moving in fast, and lifting up my shirt, and at this point I was tackled by a security guard who wrapped me up into a human ball and then lifted me off the ground with my hands behind my back in one fluid, seamless motion.

“man – you are a really fantastic security guard. barack, your security guards are awesome. really, top notch.”

And then he looked at me and said, “thanks, I think so too.”

At this point, barack got into a car and was whisked away, while I was tied to a tree and systematically beaten by three security guards. while they were beating me, I asked them questions, questions like “how did you get into this profession? How did you learn to beat people so well? Does it bother you that I am asking you so many questions? Would you mind wiping this blood from my left eye? I can’t see the blows coming from that side very well. What was your childhood like? Have you ever read my paper on blowholes? I was a c-student. Do any of you play in a band? Want to see my secret handshake?"

One of the guys said “let me see your secret handshake”.

So I said, “sure, first just untie me from this fine specimen of oak and I will show it to you.”

They untied me, but they didn’t trust me, so they hit me with a hammer on the top of my head and smashed some of my brain into my nostrils. It hurt. It hurt a lot, actually. my last words before I passed out were, “I do not like barack obama because he smashes people’s brains into their nostrils, and that is not the kind of change I can believe in.”

barack obama has been calling to apologize, and I have been screening his calls. those of you who know me know that he can either send me a text or an email if he really wants to get my attention.

meanwhile, I'll be voting for hillary.

Sunday, February 24, 2008

photos with evander

I'm up late most nights. and a couple nights ago, I noticed my friend evander was up too, so I hit him up on the video chat and said, want to go take some photos? and he said, "yes". and then we took some pictures, around midnight, of power sub-stations and train tracks.

Thursday, February 21, 2008

What is Red Mountain?

I go to a church called red mountain. It seems like a strange thing – that I go to church. Even stranger that I work there and do church music, and that I actually love it. I am often surprised that I love this church. I look at my friends, often out of desperation, and one of us usually says, “yeah, but where else do we go?”

In the past year, people that I am close to and care about have lost children, found children, found love, gotten divorced, experienced more loss than any of us saw coming, lost their jobs, lost their homes, not been able to pay their bills, fallen out of friendships, badly hurt eachother, and cared for eachother in ways that continually surprise and encourage me.

We talk a lot about what red mountain is. I don’t think any of us know. Is it a church for a diverse community? What does that look like? Are we a church for the poor? Did we used to be? Are we a bunch of white people who happen to live close to the city and pretend to care about urban issues? What does urban mean? Is it that there are no poor among us, or is it that poverty looks different than we thought it would? Maybe that’s a cop out to turn more inward? What do we do with the Bible? What do we do with the skeptics? What do we do with people who don’t doubt, with people who have it all figured out? Where do we go from here?

I know it’s a big surprise that BTM is not offering any answers, only questions. I know it is shocking that BTM is continuing on in his own crisis of faith and life, each day a bit more confused than the one before it. Maybe change is coming. Maybe it isn’t. Maybe we’ll all die and be really surprised at the ending.

A lot has happened in the past year. a lot. And for some reason, over the past couple weeks I’ve had more time than usual to be still and think and listen and write, and I keep going back to this little church, I keep getting drawn in, and it always surprises me.

People ask why so much of the music at red mountain is so dark, so depressing. I never really know how to answer that, except to say that the music of our church is very much the music of our people, and I’m quick to point out that it’s not all dark and depressing, just that a lot of it is. And if you think what I let you hear is dark, you should come hear the songs that I play at night, when nobody is listening except for my sleeping wife. Cal likes to say to me - "you can't help the songs that come out of you", and clint and I always talk about songs being in the air, and you just have to be there at the right time to find them and hear them. why is the music the way it is? I don't know. I think it just is. music is nothing more than the song we're already singing.

There are several things that give me hope. That give me hope for red mountain, for people, for friendships and relationships, and hope that maybe all this stuff about the gospel might actually be true.

Maybe I’ll get into what these things are, but for now I’ll only mention one of them (because brevity is the key to any successfully web log entry, and I've already gone too long).

I was recently privy to a conversation where someone was talking about their darkness, their pain, the sorrow that they are carrying all by themself. And a woman from red mountain, Jennifer Pickering (Jennifer if you want me to delete your name from this blog, let me know and I will) responded:

“Want to come sit on my couch and drink tea and hold a new baby and cry?”

And I thought, “yes.”

Maybe that’s what red mountain is. Maybe it’s a place where people can finally stop rushing out of their sorrow. I think that’s a big deal.

Sunday, February 17, 2008

photos from colorado

needed a break from the mountains - drove into denver with t.scott and took a few pictures. I wasn't very excited about my photos - a few of them turned out okay - but the time with t.scott was very enjoyable. I think we're going to try and do some sort of gallery show sometime in the spring, just for fun. we'll see.

Thursday, February 14, 2008

in colorado

I'm in colorado. here with 10 friends. there is a lot of snow. I have been strapping plastic things that are shaped like yardsticks onto special shoes designed for maximum foot discomfort, and then sliding down mountains. when I slide, I pretty much just point straight down the mountain. I notice that other people turn from time to time. what other people do is apparently called skiing. what I do is apparently called something else. something like: "sliding boy from alabama with yardsticks".

I have not yet made a single snowball.

in my downtime, I've been going back to old photos and re-editing and playing with them. I like this black and white cypress. there's a color one here that is pretty cool too.

Thursday, February 7, 2008

home again.

just landed late tonight from san francisco. we never really spent any time in the city on this trip, mostly we spent our time in santa cruz, palo alto, sacramento, napa, and healdsburg (sonoma). had a really busy weekend playing music (and a great time playing as well), and then spent a couple days in the wine country where brooke and I drank some good wine, ate some good food, and relaxed as much as we could.

surprisingly, I had almost no time for photos. on the way to the airport, I stopped to take some photos of and around golden gate for about 15 minutes. other than that, my camera stayed in the bag the whole time. I wish I had more time for photography when I traveled.

Friday, February 1, 2008

headed to california

so, I'm headed to california. if you are in santa cruz over the weekend, say hello. or if you are in sacramento sunday night, come out to valley springs, where red mountain will be doing a concert, starting 5:30pm.

there are other reasons I am going to california. like, visiting with all friends digerness, visiting the town of palo alto, and finally, getting some vacation time and drinking as much napa valley wine as possible with my wife.

also, I don't really like this photo. it was one of the first I ever took with my D50, and, well, there is so much I don't like about it that I don't even know where to start. but it was all I had handy that referenced california or the bay area so there you go.