May 31, 2005
British telecoms operator BT Group Plc has wired up a church in Wales to allow the congregation to hook onto local high-speed Internet connections when they want a break from the sermon.
Yes, that's right - if you get bored with the sermon, just fire up the laptop and start surfing - send a little email... Which for me begs the question - wouldn't it be much more comfortable to just stay at home and do this? Why get up, get dressed, and go to church? The Rev. Kimber had this to say...
"The church has to move with the times and I wanted to make St John's a sanctuary for everyone, including business people with laptops and mobiles," Kimber said in a statement issued by BT. "I have no problem with people quietly sending an email or surfing the Internet in church, as long as they respect the church."
It seems to me, if someone came to church and then proceeded to pointedly ignore the sermon, that is disrespectful. And few - I mean almost NO ONE - has a job that will cause utter destruction or death if they don't answer their emails for an hour or two. So what's the bottom line here?
They want to get people into church - these people will donate money. Sadly this move by the Rev. Kimber will very likely have the opposite effect of that intended. You lose the respect of the people in the congregation - you lose the attendance. I mean, why bother to go to church at all if the person running the church doesn't see it as more important than web surfing and email? Just a thought.
May 30, 2005
Video can be found at Trey Jackson's (naturally - he's always got the very best video clips!)
How great is that!
From a Brief History of Memorial Day here is the original order.
General Orders No.11, WASHINGTON, D.C., May 5, 1868
The 30th day of May, 1868, is designated for the purpose of strewing with flowers or otherwise decorating the graves of comrades who died in defense of their country during the late rebellion, and whose bodies now lie in almost every city, village, and hamlet church-yard in the land. In this observance no form of ceremony is prescribed, but posts and comrades will in their own way arrange such fitting services and testimonials of respect as circumstances may permit.
We are organized, comrades, as our regulations tell us, for the purpose among other things, "of preserving and strengthening those kind and fraternal feelings which have bound together the soldiers, sailors, and marines who united to suppress the late rebellion." What can aid more to assure this result than cherishing tenderly the memory of our heroic dead, who made their breasts a barricade between our country and its foes? Their soldier lives were the reveille of freedom to a race in chains, and their deaths the tattoo of rebellious tyranny in arms. We should guard their graves with sacred vigilance. All that the consecrated wealth and taste of the nation can add to their adornment and security is but a fitting tribute to the memory of her slain defenders. Let no wanton foot tread rudely on such hallowed grounds. Let pleasant paths invite the coming and going of reverent visitors and fond mourners. Let no vandalism of avarice or neglect, no ravages of time testify to the present or to the coming generations that we have forgotten as a people the cost of a free and undivided republic.
If our eyes grow dull, other hands slack, and other hearts cold in the solemn trust, ours shall keep it well as long as the light and warmth of life remain to us.
Let us, then, at the time appointed gather around their sacred remains and garland the passionless mounds above them with the choicest flowers of spring-time; let us raise above them the dear old flag they saved from his honor; let us in this solemn presence renew our pledges to aid and assist those whom they have left among us a sacred charge upon a nation's gratitude, the soldier's and sailor's widow and orphan.
It is the purpose of the Commander-in-Chief to inaugurate this observance with the hope that it will be kept up from year to year, while a survivor of the war remains to honor the memory of his departed comrades. He earnestly desires the public press to lend its friendly aid in bringing to the notice of comrades in all parts of the country in time for simultaneous compliance therewith.
Department commanders will use efforts to make this order effective.
By order of
JOHN A. LOGAN,
WM. T. COLLINS, A.A.G.
May 27, 2005
Happy Birthday Machelle! more...
If you head over to the ACLU page and scroll down to the date 3/28/03 (yes, March 2003 - over 2 years ago) you will find this nugget of information near the bottom of the paragraph...
...REDACTED was informed that his case for the proper treatment of the Qur'an had been taken to higher levels and presented as a serious issue. The effort had been hurt, however, because it had been found that detainees were hiding things within the pages of the Qur'an. As a result, the guards were required to look through the Qur'an for their own safety. REDACTED was asked if he could assure camp officials that none of the detainees would ever hide any objects of any kind in their Qur'ans. He stated he could not. [emph mine--ed.]
Oh my, oh my, they've been bad boys. Seems they're trying to hide weapons in their copies of the holy book itself! Now I wonder why this has gotten no attention whatsoever. It seems to me, the MSM is going to great lengths to tell us what nice laid back guys are being detained at Gitmo.
This is the first I've heard of the dangers being faced by those who are guarding these terrorists and terrorist wannabes. I suppose if one of the Marines gets killed or severely injured... it should be chalked up to pursuing a dangerous profession... right? These aren't nice guys in this prison - and those doing the guarding have every right to ensure their own safety.
However, looking at the numbers makes me wonder if this story isn't one of two things (or maybe both). One being - it's a slow news time - they need something to stir up some interest (so to speak) or Two being - it's time to start looking into lawsuits against the evil drug companies again.
Now just remember the words of wisdom that were preached for hundreds of years...
Stop it or you'll go blind!
May 26, 2005
Today it looks as if he's on one of his periodic low periods. Those blues that we all experience from time to time... the "why am I in this place when I could be somewhere soooo much better" blues.
I should note that it rained today. All day. It’s cold, too. The time has come, perhaps, to plot the Great Move to Arizona. Not now; not soon. I just ordered a light fixture for the dining room, for heaven’s sake, and I don’t think I’ll be prying it off the ceiling anytime soon. But in five years? Sure. I can take five more winters, five miserable springs, five desperate summers, if I knew I was heading to my reward.
Okay, I'm not in Minnesota, but the Chicago area isn't a whole heck of a lot better. We've had a nice enough few days - very little in the way of rain for spring time (this works for me if not for the grass). On the whole though... it's the cold that gets to me too. The fact that it's May and most days you have to wear a jacket or sweater to go outside.
One thing that he is not taking into account (because Gnat is so young right now) is that in 5 years his daughter will be 9 years old. Doesn't seem like much does it... she shouldn't have a problem if mom and dad decide to move - she's young, she can make new friends... uh yeah right! Unless the move is dictated by where a parent has to work in order to support the family, it's going to be darn near impossible for him to uproot his daughter and move her across the country.
My guess is that he will be in Minneapolis at least until Gnat graduates from High School... and maybe even until she's out of college - so she has a place to come back to and see her friends. Yeah, it's hard to move kids - change places in the country, make new friends, assimilate into new schools. It's not something to be done because the weather is annoying - trust me on this.
This plotting of a warmer life will be the dream he aspires to and may eventually decide isn't worth the trouble after all... but I know exactly how he feels.
This is not spam.
You are one of twenty bloggers chosen to play the game at aequalswhat.
Your part of the code is d=h.
Let the game begin!
Then I received an email from him apologizing for looking like a spam comment. Yeah some people are pretty touchy and his comment took some people by surprise and ticked them off. There might have been a better way to handle it - but I didn't find the comment offensive.
So I headed over to the site and had a look at what the game was supposed to be.
Twenty bloggers have been chosen to try and break this code, a simple letter substitution code. Fourteen have received one part of the code key, six have received two.
And now, the code.
The words have been compressed to thwart any attempts to guess the answer according to the number of letters in each word, but punctuation has been left intact to serve as markers.
The game begins now. Have fun with it.
Today I did some googling on aequalswhat and found a few people had managed to find the time to set up google bombs so they could be found. Well, I figured I better do my bit to get on the list - even though I'm a few days late and it looks like one of the bloggers (at least) already has my piece of the code. So, here goes.
We'll see if that gets me on the list. In the meantime - I'll have to find some time later today to get around to the other blogs and see if I can work on the puzzle a bit. I just need more time in my day!
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