sun kil moon

moorestown is the song. the album--april, is here. well, actually not quite yet--but i have it and it's great.

although i did happen to notice the "genre" for it on my itunes, "sadcore," which is just a little...well, sad. very soothing though. great for a drizzly day.



confession: i have an addiction. i can't stop. i can't help myself. i need help. i need an intervention. i need rescuing.

yes, it's true. i can't stop eating Dinos & Sharks fruit snacks! (chazoo being the brand). i mean, they are just so good! naturally and artificially flavored. made with REAL fruit juice. and seriously, they provide 100% daily value of vitamin c. so they're healthy right??? one pouch is 100 calories and 1g of fat. 22g of carbs and 13g of sugar yes, but look at all that vitamin C!!! as a dessert substitute at least, not so bad right? unless someone out there is going to tell me that they contain some sort of bone enamel or squid parts that will coat my intestines, i think i'm ok.

(this is the part where you intervene, my dear friends)



back from arkansas, among other things. sorry for the little blog break. it's over now.

"You alone are unutterable,
from the time you created all things,
that can be spoken of.
You alone are unknowable,
from the time you created all things
that can be known.
All things cry out about you;
those which speak,
and those which cannot speak.
All things honour you;
those which think,
and those which cannot think
For there is one longing, one groaning,
that all things have for you...

All things pray to you
that comprehend your plan
and offer you a silent hymn.
In you, the One, all things abide,
and all things endlessly run to you,
who are the end of all."

Gregory of Nazianzus, 329-389 AD


the test

if you haven't seen this yet, it's awesome. good luck!



for tom

Mexican stand-off
–noun Informal: Sometimes Offensive.
a stalemate or impasse; a confrontation that neither side can win.

[Origin: 1890–95]

this seems to be the situation every couple months when it's dwindling. we all see it going, but who is going to be the one to break down and buy more? who will give in? who can hold out the longest? you see them shrink and disappear. finally you take to using other locations like on campus, or at a restaurant. maybe you even borrow a roll from one of these places, dropping it into your backpack behind locked doors.

yes, the source for toilet paper is always a point of contention. so tonight when all was gone and the need was dire, my roommate tom returned from wal-mart empty-handed. tragic. but he had won in a sense. what was to be my solution? would i have to make a late night run, enduring that knowing smile from the cashier? well good and gracious tom, he had it all figured out.

a roll of paper-towels torn in two. genius! don't you think? what ingenuity! what resourcefulness! and the results?

surprisingly ineffective.



"The commandment is that you shall love, but ah, if you will understand yourself and life, then it seems that it should not need to be commanded, because to love people is the only thing worth living for, and without this love you are not really living."

Soren Kierkegaard, Works of Love


10 songs

so the game is, you turn on shuffle on your itunes and play from your whole library, then list the first 10 songs that play--no cheating!

1. Suitcase -- Over the Rhine -- Ohio
2. III Courante -- Bach -- Cello Suite
3. The Man With No Skin -- Great Lake Swimmers
4. The Sporting Life -- The Decemberists -- Picaresque
5. Leif Erikson -- Interpol -- Turn on the Bright Lights
6. Baby's Clean Conscience -- Ugly Casanova -- Diggin' Holes
7. Best of Luck -- Nickel Creek -- Why Should the Fire Die?
8. Strike Me Down -- Reindeer Section -- Son of Evil Reindeer
9. Steel for Papa -- The Flashbulb -- Soundtrack to a Vacant Life
10. Friday I'm in Love -- The Cure -- Galore

there it is. play along!

ps the bonus song that i just can't help putting on:
11. Just a Friend -- Biz Markie


jane austen

"Jane Austen? Why I go so far as to say that any library is a good library that does not contain a volume by Jane Austen. Even if it contains no other book."

"Everytime I read 'Pride and Prejudice' I want to dig her up and beat her over the skull with her own shin-bone."

--Mark Twain

yes, this is a post that might draw some hatred--but it has to be done. i feel it is my duty. why do i feel it is my duty? because i have an english degree? because i am a man? because no one else has the guts? yes.

so women, what is the fascination with her books? i mean, she wrote pretty much the same story in every one of them right? are they really all that different? and what does it say that about them they that are primarily read by women?

of course we're not trying to judge them on whether or not they are good literature. you could argue both ways, but my favorite english professor loved her, and i respect his opinion enough to believe him. besides the fact that i've never actually read any jane austen :). haha

i guess the real issue here is that i feel like so many people limit themselves when there is so much good stuff out there to read. i feel the same way about tom clancy (on the guy end), or any books with shiny covers, or-dare i say it-j.k. rowling.

women of the world! put down your jane austen and pick up something else! men of the world! put down your tom clancy and pick up something else! pick up something that will challenge you, that will not take you to some escapist fantastical world that has so little bearing to your actual life and the things you experience. we can learn so much from stories about other worlds and such--that's not what i'm talking about. i'm talking about books that have something to say beyond just passing the time.

life is too precious to ever just pass the time.

now of course if you feel jane austen is not just passing the time, please feel free to disagree and inform me as to why. i dare you.


why i love kansas

now, you might not hear me say this all too often, especially when i am complaining about the fall season being way too short, or there usually not being enough snow in winter (not this year!). and though i've lived here nearly all my life, there are many other places i would love to go that are quite special. but no, there are some truly great things about kansas to be sure.

yesterday late afternoon i was laying outside in a bed of pine needles in 70 degree weather, soaking it in as the sun set. the evening remained beautiful, though very windy. this morning it was a little gloomy, and it turned into a wonderful rainy day. i'm not talking about a pseudo-rainy day where it rains for like an hour, i'm talking about raining all. day. long. yes, glorious. it turned to thunderstorms as it started to get dark. and then it was snowy heavy, slushy flakes, which have since solidified into snowflakes and it's 35 degrees outside. all this in just over 24 hours. all we needed was a tornado in there somewhere. only in kansas.

of course it's funny that our love for a place has to do so much with the weather. never mind the great people, the amazing attractions (or lack thereof), or the proximity to the beach and mountains. weather is such a crazy driving force here in america. no, it's not universal. other countries care about the weather far less than we do--even in agrarian countries much more dependent on it than us. we have to know what the weather will be. we have to use it as a filler in dead conversation. we let it dictate our mood. is it just me or does that seem like an unhealthy level of susceptibility? if something as simple as the weather can do that, what chance do we then have against stronger forces?

oh, sorry for that aside. i'm off my soapbox now. of course i also love kansas for the amazing people, but i've already talked about that. seven hours to the mountains--could be worse. the beach? who needs it? way overrated. besides, the thunderstorms we get here are incredible and are incomparable.


quote of the week

"Communion with God is more often an intuition or inner conviction that God's heart is greater than your heart, God's mind is greater than your human mind, and God's light is so much greater than your light that it might blind you and make you feel like you're in the night."

Henri Nouwen

i'm (not) neutral

it's a funny name for a blog if you don't know the back story. i went to switzerland for a semester, a notoriously neutral country, and started this blog to chronicle my travels there. i appreciated the irony, as a blog is usually a place for anything but neutrality. i suppose it is that irony that has allowed me to keep the name, though i have thought often about changing it. somehow it still just seems to fit.

i'm not a very decisive person usually. i'm wondering if that is truly the case, or if i just give way to others more often because that is the general condition of a youngest child. you rarely get your way, so it doesn't do much good to fight for it. there are other methods to get your way of course, and the baby of the family is certainly a master of these techniques most often to the resentment of the older siblings. of course with your parents there is also the benefit of them having just been so exhausted by the first few children that they are too tired to try so hard with you. there just isn't as much need to fight.

i am talking about decisions. i thought an INFJ was supposed to be good at making decisions. it's that J part. i am generally pretty laid back, but if it's something i feel strongly about i'll be as stubborn as they come. a J is supposed to generally understand their feelings a bit more as well. i suppose that's why it is even harder when there is confusion.

when i decided to come to k-state i didn't give it a ton of thought. after a semester here i thought i had made a mistake, chosen the wrong place, hadn't listened to God in it. i think i was wrong about that--i am so glad i ended up here in manhattan. but in the midst of wrestling with feeling like i had made that mistake God didn't tell me that i had made the wrong decision. he told me that it wasn't my job to try to fix it by transferring, but rather that he had made it right. thank God for the goodness of God.

still though, i wonder what life would have been like if i had gone somewhere else. and i think that even as i am extremely please with how it went. what if i wasn't so satisfied with the course i took? and i didn't even understand the weight of that decision at the time--how could i? is it easier to not know how critically important the decision ahead is? sometimes it seems like it.

is it possible to take a direction at a fork in the road and not wonder where the other path may have led? but you can't just stand at the fork. neutrality is cowardice. but that of course is the point--it's meant to be ironic. i will not be neutral.

how do you just make one of the hardest decisions in your life?