02.26.02 >2057

I'm bein' very prolific tonight, but I can't help it! Finding too much good stuff out there ...

Behind Grammy grins, an industry grimaces : "Socked from without by a generation of music fans who regularly forgo the purchase of CDs for free songs from the Internet, the industry is also shaken from within by lawsuits challenging the very nature of how artists are discovered, nurtured, and marketed. Two fresh stats light the sky like signal flares: sales of blank CDs in 2001 exceeded those of recorded CDs - for the first time in history - while album sales dropped 10 percent over the same year."


This Thursday, European Union delegates will meet to try to hammer out a "constitution." The author of this article compares this meeting to the Philadelphia convention of 1787, though of course there are very different details allotted to each. It's interesting nonetheless.


While playing lawyer at his own trial yesterday :

Appearing frustrated, Mr. Milosevic said the witness must have seen crimes against the Serbs committed by the KLA independence fighters.

"No, there were none because the [Serbian] army was close to the village," the witness replied. "I had six sons and none of them were members of the KLA."

"All right, quite obviously you know nothing of what I am asking you," Mr. Milosevic snapped. He then told the prosecution: "You are obviously bringing in witnesses of this kind to ill treat me."
Order in the court! Mr. Milosevic, anymore outbursts like that and I'll hold you in contempt. Not that it really matters, it'll just add to your jail sentence ...


I first heard about this story from my magazine prof, and I'm amazed at how quickly they shut it down : The Pentagon's new agency, the Office of Strategic Information, will close after rumors circulated that the Office leadership proposed to spread false information abroad.

In the first place, this makes it sound like the OSI should've been more like a secret agency than a relatively public one. Secondly, that they opened this office with the primary objective of spreading some sort of information doomed it from the start. Thirdly, by shutting down they proved that these rumors were true.

As opinionated as they are, why don't you just leave this job to the journalists?


Belgrade Relishes Life at Peace : "Add the trauma and unrest of the Balkan wars of the 1990's, which have ended but resolved little, and most visitors today leave with the impression that Serbia is simply between wars."

02.25.02 >2202

Larry, bein' the irritating and indecisive younger brother that he sometimes is, decided yesterday that he wanted to go to another cell group meeting in town on the claim that he was "invited" there. Not that we're expressly forbidden from jumping from cell group to cell group, but it's kind of annoying to not show up where people were expecting you, right?

Ah, well - a minute detail in the face of the resulting discussion. More than forty people showed up for the fellowship and food and were now in the living room, and the topic of this month's meeting was sort of related to the pastor's sermon ("Dealing with the death of a loved one" - funny, I did that a couple weeks ago): What was a question you'd ask God once you got to heaven?

The most common one was "Why does evil exist?"

Several months ago, I probably wouldn't have been able to answer this question, but now I can. I didn't say anything during the meeting last night - not that I had to. Other folks responded to this question in roundabout fashion.

The answer, from what you might gather after reading Scripture, is quite simple : If there was no evil in the world, then mankind would not have the free will to choose between good or evil.

(Minor detraction : O' course, this then pointed to another relating question - why does God allow evil to happen to innocent people? I'll probly post about this later. But back to the regularly posted goodness ...)

God created an angelic host to serve him. He created mankind to walk in fellowship with him. With the Fall after Adam and Eve sinned, man was offered the choice ever after to reject him or follow him.

Hope I didn't come off as a know-it-all with this tidbit of theological whateveryouwanttocallit, but it amazes me every time I think about it. This could branch off into a bunch of other stuff, but the main point is this: by the very act of giving us the freedom of choice, God showed how much love he has for his creation.

02.21.02 >2243

So me and Miriam were wanderin' through the mall earlier this evening, looking for a few things, and our dad calls me on my cell phone and asks if we're coming to Livermore for dinner. I say probably not because Miriam's been driving a lot this week and is a tad tired, so we agree to talk to him again that night whenever we get back home.

"I've got an idea," Miriam suddenly says. "Why don't we go talk to him in person?"

I give her an incredulous look. "Are you serious? I thought you were tired!"

She shrugs. "I just need some coffee and I'll be set."

Two hours later we pull into the driveway of my folks' place and call my little sister up on her phone to tell her to open the garage door. My dad comes out, unable to say a word. When I approach him, I realize that he has tears in his eyes.

It's nice to feel loved - but it's nicer to love someone else in a way they didn't expect!


So now the apartment hunting begins. Miriam and I are lookin' for one around town (in Daly City, not SF), even though we're not expecting to move until the end of May. Fuuuun!


Oy - I realized that I was painting very broad strokes when I said "sexual content on the Internet" in my last post. That could mean any number of things, from erotic literature, to cyber sex, to porrnography, to writing about having sex with someone in a story. (And watch the hits increase on this page just because I mentioned something that had to do with sex in the first place! Yech. Don't you have anything better to do?)

All right, so what does this have to do with you guys? Well, hopefully I haven't scared any friends off by admitting I did something online that I probably shouldn't have, and just because it was reading and writing words does not mean I'm off the hook. A little praying goes a pretty long way - so keep me in your prayers. Please. I don't think I've ever met anyone who could overcome a problem like this overnight. Also, there are resources out there that can help you (or more accurately, ME) deal with it. Here's a pretty kool one. Scripture helps. Talking it through with someone I trust helps. Having accountability with a friend helps.

And maybe there are those who probably think I'm making a big deal out of nothing. Sex is sex. Everybody does it nowadays. A little online porn won't kill ya. Where's the harm? My friend, it's when sex becomes your vice and what you think about every freakin' day that it's time someone stamps "ADDICT" or "OBSESSED" on your forehead. No thank you.