Just Another Dope

Well, following Floyd Landis' inspirational comeback to win the Tour de France last week, he's now tested positive for high testosterone levels during the race. He's currently been suspended until a second sample can be tested to confirm the results. After all the good feelings that Landis' win generated, the last thing the international cycling sport needed was a scandal like this one may become. Good luck holding the average viewer's attention now.

I sure would like to hope that the result is simply a faulty test, but I'm not going to hold my breath.

Get In Gear

Recently I've caught on to the BBC car show, Top Gear. I wouldn't call myself a car buff, but this is easily the best car show I've ever watched. Along with serious reviews of performance cars, they also have crazy contests and other events such as:

  • Creating and racing "amphibious" cars they each made in about a day.
  • Racing a car vs. a plane/ferry/speedboat from London to Oslo, Norway.
  • Trying to figure out why people like to go on vacations in campers (or caravans in the UK) and accidentally burning it to the ground.
  • Launching cars at a target in a game of "darts".

The three hosts (James May, Richard Hammond and Jeremy Clarkson) are very frank and simply hillarious. They play very well off each other, but each show comes across as a group of guys just having fun playing with the toys that they love. Gotta love that!

You can check out some clips from Top Gear at their website, or you can check some out at YouTube. And if you like it as much as I do, then please put in a request at BBC America to get the show on here in the US as well!

Edit: Here's another hillarious episode from the Top Gear guys.

Middle East Crisis?

While I've been following the stories coming out of the Middle East, I have to admit that I'm a bit confused as well. It seems as if things just suddenly escalated, and I've heard more than a few people talk about Revelations and the end times (in ways that just don't match up with the book of the Bible). Truthfully, I think we've just seen a country which has dealt with enough strife finally say "ENOUGH", despite the other political ramifications.

But the extended consequences are, quite frankly, rather scary. Are we on the verge of another major war?

I pray that we are not…

So Fresh And So Clean

So, I've finally gotten around to making many of the changes I've been looking to. Besides the new look, you may notice that the comments section has changed (you no longer have to log in), tagging has been added, and there are a few new blocks on the right. It's a pretty major overhaul, but the site needed it. Anyway, there's still a few things I'd like to add like a photos module (preferably with Flickr or another photo sharing service) and more. So that'll come eventually.

Anyway, let me know what you think of the new setup!

Short Outage

So, thanks to the Last.FM feed that shows the music info at the top of my page getting corrupted, my blog has been unavailable for a few days. Looks like they corrected the issue once I sent them the bug.

However, it did get me to scramble to work on my updates to the site over the last few days, so I'm hoping to get them up over the weekend. Then we'll be rockin!

Hard Work and Hard Goodbyes

Much of the last few days Marci and I have been out helping Pastor Paul and his family get packed up for their cross-country move starting on Wednesday. It's been a lot of hard work, but it's just nice to be spending time with them before we have to say our final goodbyes. Still, I could do without traversing three flights of stairs in 90-degree weather. I'll be heading over again tonight to start getting furniture into the moving van.

Sunday was Paul's last service at SPAG, and it was interesting. It still doesn't feel quite like it's happening, and I know saying our last goodbyes before they leave is going to be hard. I'm not used to being on this side of the coin, as usually I have been the one moving on to someplace else.

If you guys happen to stumble across this, I'm going to really miss you all!

Get off ME!

Today, Microsoft ended support for Windows98, WindowsME and WindowsXP Service Pack 1.

I sure hope that they're more confident in Vista than everyone else seems to be. Leaving support for only one consumer OS seems rather risky. I can see finally eliminating support for Win98, and I'm surprised they even acknowledge that they created WinME, but I'm sure there are a lot of XP users who never upgraded to SP2.

Oh well, if it does backfire, it'll just Linux better…hopefully!

Dad's Here

The second half of the day yesterday was no less eventful than the morning. I met my dad and helped him move into his new apartment for the time being so he could start work today.

If you hadn't heard, my dad got a job in Pittsburgh, and my parents are in the process of selling their house in Columbus and moving eastward to Pennsylvania.

So far, the whole thing is kinda surreal, but I look forward to having them around. It'll be nice to visit more regularly and I'll get to show them around Pittsburgh as well! Should be some fun days ahead!

And who knows, my sister's looking to find a place over this way as well. Guess I'm just a trendsetter!

My Experience Behind The Pulpit

Yesterday was a very interesting day for me, but for now let me focus on the morning. Several weeks ago, I was asked by our pastor to fill in for him July 9th while he and his family were going to be out of town for his sister-in-law's wedding. I told him I could do it (on top of my worship leader duties as well), and even though I had done portions of services before with college groups, it was definately a different experience going it alone.

I spent the time talking about the uselessness of worry and the benefits of trust. In general, I think it went pretty well, but I was clearly nervous and not flowing things together smoothly. I am anxious to get a copy of the tape to listen to and see how it actually went. In my mind, it's just a blur right now anyway.

I'm going to try to get the sermon into an MP3 eventually, and if I can get that done, then I'd gladly share it. I know the experience makes me appreciate my pastors all that much more, for it's no easy task to put a good sermon together and deliver it well.

OLN: <em>Outdoor</em> Life Network…Right?

I caught a little bit of the Tour de France on OLN today during my lunch bread, and what do I see but a self-advertisement promoting their 8-ball Billiards finale on Sunday. Now, correct me if I'm wrong, but I seem to remember that most people play billiards indoors. Oh well, I can forgive them just this once…

And them moments later they air another self-promo for their fall lineup, which includes NHL hockey and it looked like Arena Football, both which are played indoors as well. Am I the only one who sees a problem with this.

If you're going to have a niche TV network, lets stick to that niche, or change the name of the network. Maybe they could just change it to OSN (The Other Sports Network). Then they could try to compete with ESPN for the weird sports shows, like VIKING: The Ultimate Obstacle Course, competitive eating contests, professional mini golf tournaments, and eventually the bumper pool national championships.

Hey, at worst it would be mildly amusing. And that's more than I can say for OLN right now.