Archive for March, 2006

Bravo SF Chronicle!

Wednesday, March 29th, 2006

There’s a phrase you won’t hear often on this blog, but their recent opinion piece regarding the out of control board of supervisors is excellent. To quote from the opinion piece (in case you’re too lazy to click on the link yourself):

“THE IRONY was obviously lost on the clueless San Francisco supervisors when they passed a resolution warning that a Christian youth gathering could “negatively influence the politics of America’s most tolerant and progressive city.”

“Spare us the doomsday hyperbole, supervisors.

“We can safely report that the politics of San Francisco suffered no discernible shift in ideological alignment from the convergence of 25,000 Christian teenagers listening to rock ‘n’ roll music and words of inspiration.


The supervisors’ reaction to the evangelical Christians was so boorishly over the top that only one word could describe it:


The reality is that the ultra-liberals of our country, and they seem to have an exclusive lock on positions on the SF board of supervisor positions, while constantly claiming their goal is tolerance are actually one of the least tolerant groups since McCarthy was in office. They don’t respect freedom of religion and are perfectly willing to prevent individuals from practicing their faith or at the minimum forcing them to violate principles of their faith (e.g. force to provide birth control coverage to employees). They don’t respect freedom of speech by those whom they disagree (e.g. abortion protestors). As this resolutions shows, the don’t respect the right of people to peacably assemble. And if completely spitting on the 1st amendment isn’t enough, they would eliminate the 2nd amendment entirely.

Bravo to the SF Chronicle for shining light on the excesses of the left.

Lost Cal templates

Wednesday, March 29th, 2006

I don’t know how many of my readers use the link to just get sports related blog posts (and the cal color scheme) but it no longer is working properly.  My web provider upgraded the blogging software and it overwrote all of my templates.  In fairmess to them, they told me to backup my templates with plenty of warning and I failed to do so.

I will try to get them back up and running next week.  In the meantime, I’m sure you’ll be able to manage seeing the standard look and feel of my full blog.

Hunkering down

Thursday, March 2nd, 2006

Today’s Gospel has one of the most important statements that Christ made:

“If anyone wishes to come after me, he must deny himself and take up his cross daily and follow me.” (Luke: 9:23)

This is from Luke chapter 9 and the context is important to fully understand the importance of what Christ has said. The 12 disciples have been following Christ for a while now. They’ve seen the miracles. But yet, one can imagine, the “newness” of being a disciple has worn off. Christ send THEM out to exercise demons and cure diseases. They come back amazed, knowing that the powers they yielded did not come from themselves but from Christ.

Then, just when you think they’d understand how powerful Christ was, something amazing happens. The crowds are persistently following Christ and have no food. The disciples ask Christ to send them home so that they can eat. Christ then amazes all of them by multiplying the little food that the disciples have to feed the thousands who are following Him. Everyone, disciples included, were amazed.

It is then that Christ asks the disciples: “Who do you say that I am?”

You can imagine that these overwhelmed disciples are ready to say that he is anything he wants to be, and they do. Peter recognizes Him as the Messiah, as the Son of Man.

But then Christ throws them a curveball. Instead of telling them how wonderful He is or rejoicing in their recognition of His divinity, He admonishes them:

“The Son of Man must suffer greatly and be rejected by the elders, the chief priests, and the scribes, and be killed and on the third day be raised.”
Then he said to all, “If anyone wishes to come after me, he must deny himself and take up his cross daily and follow me.”

Kind of a letdown, no?

What a challenge that was to the disciples and to us all. If you want to follow Christ, you must be ready to sacrifice more. I envision God saying, “You think you’re up for this? You think you’ve got it under control? You haven’t seen ‘nothing yet. Get ready to hunker down because we’re just starting!”

Today I’m in my second day of fasting and I am HUNGRY. I didn’t eat anything Wednesday and had my first meal of Lent today at Lunch. As I sat down to eat my taco salad, the salad that usually leaves me stuffed, it looked particularly small even though the cafeteria lady seemed to pile it unusually high (she must have seen the hunger in my eyes). I thought to myself, “this tiny thing has to last me until tomorrow until dinner!?!” Nevertheless I wolfed it down hoping that it would at least leave me filled for an hour or two. But I hadn’t even gotten up from the table and I was already hungry.

It is at these moments when remembering Christ admonision is important. I must remember that to follow Christ is to deny myself even in physical hunger. It means that we have to dig deep to find that strength to follow Him, no matter how hungry we may get.

All praises be to God for all the strength that He gives us! It’s time to hunker down.

Names for boats

Wednesday, March 1st, 2006

Down in the comments for my post about my new sailboat my brother brought up that I can’t have a boat named Fran. What is my wife Wendy to think?

While I agre that the boat needs a new name (what you can’t see in the picture is that the subtext to FRAN is “The Singing Wombat”), I think it is important to clarify what the name is about:

Fran was the man (yes man) who built the boat. He built it around 1990 and sold it to the previous owner, Gary, in 1993. Fran was an active IC sailor in the Bay Area and spent years helping Gary get up to speed in the boat. Fran also met with an untimely end (in the late 1990’s I think) and I believe that Gray named the boat after Fran after his death. Gary sold me the boat last week but I didn’t get the explaination of why Fran was “The Singing Wombat”.

In any case, consider this post the appropriate place to post comments with suggestions for new names. Already being considered is:

-Way to go HOLMOE! (Inside Cal Bear fan joke)
-Did you feel that puff? (On the bottom of the boat/hiking board so only visible during a capsize)
-Let’s see you try it (Same as above)
-BEARing down (Cal Bear reference)
-Tedhead (Cal Bear reference which requires “tie-dye painting” the boat)

Already suggested and not being considered:

-Not Fran’s (too disrespectful)
-Waterworld Sucked (no vulgarities and I never saw the movie)
-Slowboat (?)
-She got a Grand Piano (too crass)

Ash Wednesday thoughts

Wednesday, March 1st, 2006

Following Christ is always such a difficult thing because it requires balancing many things. Christ many times tells us to proclaim the Gospel in public. But in today’s Gospel reading he tells us:

‘”When you pray, do not be like the hypocrites, who love to stand and pray in the synagogues and on street corners so that others may see them. Amen, I say to you, they have received their reward.
But when you pray, go to your inner room, close the door, and pray to your Father in secret. And your Father who sees in secret will repay you.’ (Matt. 6: 5-6)

We have to be very careful to examine WHY we do what we do in public. Are we doing it because we are actually trying to accomplish something or are we doing it so that we may get public recognition for doing it?

I think the answer to this question can often be difficult to determine even for ourselves. What is our true inner motivation? It takes a great deal of reflection to understand all of our motivations. Lent calls us to spend lots of time in prayer and I think spending a fair amount of that time examining, with brutal self-honesty, what our motivations are, is prayer time well spent.

May God bless all of you in this Lenten season.