Saturday, June 30, 2007

iPhone Stress Tests - PC World Video

iPhone questions: Can you scratch it? What happens when you drop it? PC World's Eric Butterfield takes the iPhone through a grueling set of tests to check how the device handles abuse.

Watch Here | digg story

Friday, June 29, 2007

iPhone videos.



Around 7 PM tonight my wonderful wife walked into the house with a brand new iPhone, for me! All I can say is WOW! All the hype, all of the criticism all of the anticipation. Here are my initial thoughts:
1. Easy setup - I had the iPhone all switched and synced within 30 minutes. That means e-mail, calendar, music, podcasts, contacts, etc. all synced. Not bad. The set up on iTunes was so easy. If I were an associate at an cellphone dealer I would be looking for a job, because this is the way to go with cell. No clueless dude trying to up sell you. Just simple iTunes.
2. Solid and durable - This phone is solid. I got a Speck case and a crystal film to lay on top. Perfect. I'm not at all worried about a scratched or broken screen.
3. Apps - All of the Applications are slick. From weather to email to clocks (you can keep time for all parts of the world!). Youtube, sweet. Safari, sweet. Maps, sweet. On and on. This phone is the ultimate gadget, practical gadget.
4. Packaging - The bag that Apple placed the iPhone in was amazing. It's like a cardboard box with ribbon on the sides. The box was typical Apple.
5. Line Hospitality - Penny said that the Apple employees were very kind. They gave away bottled water, cookies, brownies and a cool Apple key chain light. They really made it an "experience" as opposed to the AT&T guys who probably didn't know what to do, what's hospitality?

Did you get an iPhone? Do you want one? When will you take the dive? Want to buy a Cingular 8125 Pocket PC? Let me know.


Thursday, June 28, 2007

Goodbye Relevant Magazine!

Today I received in the mail my final issue of Relevant Magazine. Boy am I glad. This once-decent mag that captured a glimpse into neo-pop Christian culture has now turned into a battle for the tackiest ad's by Christian universities and music festivals. There is always a try at "racy" articles that don't even intrigue me (like the Matis Yahu article). The worst part for me is the whole commercialization of "justice ministries" that is prevalent in Relevant. The ad I have posted here is an example of the true tackiness that "Relevant Christianity" has become. Thank goodness this is my last issue. I think Relevant tries too hard to present Christ followers as cool in their endless-who-cares articles and reviews of indie music artists. In my life I have tried to be cool, I'm just not, never will be. I think Relevant is no longer relevant, so stop trying to convince everyone that you are. Anyone agree? Disagree? Your comments are appreciated.


Wednesday, June 27, 2007

Surgery Stinks!

I won't elaborate, but knee surgery yesterday was hell. There is nothing good about surgery day. I got real loopy when they put the IV in and had a hard time coming out of recovery. They kept giving me Gatorade and Coke, I blew it right out, in front of a bunch of waiting patients. Last night was the worst night ever. The drugs my doctor prescribed me didn't work, so I was up most of the night moaning, groaning and cussin'. Not a good sight, until mi espossa broke out the other pain killers, that worked! Anyway, here are a couple of pictures for your enjoyment, I'll share more soon.


Tuesday, June 26, 2007

Some Thoughts...

The iPhone countdown: 3 days and some hours

Has anyone purchased the new Lifehouse release? If not you should, it's wicked good, and as my friend and co-worker Jeff says "it's not that wussy".

Penny and I went to the beach yesterday. It was unreal. The key to going to the beach in SoFlo in the summer is to go early (before 10) or late (after 4) because other wise its too freaking hot. The water was flat and clear and the temp was 84. Not bad huh? There were a couple of dolphin swimming around too.

I had an amazing cheeseburger for lunch yesterday. This place is the best and their fries ain't too shabby either!

My beard has gotten significantly longer. A day doesn't go by that someone calls me leprechaun or Lucky Charms. Interesting, Lucky doesn't have a beard, go figure.

I think Fred Thomson and Hilary will be the 2 party candidates for the upcoming '08 election. Hilary scares the poop out of me.

Summer TV is just awful. We have been watching reruns of "The Office" and "Psych", which is a surprisingly witty show. New episodes start airing July 13th.

I just bought a 4 GB jump drive for $39! I remember buying a 256 MB drive a few years back for $75. My how the cost of memory has come down.

"A man of knowledge uses words with restraint, and a man of understanding is even-tempered" Proverbs 17:27


Monday, June 25, 2007


In less than 24 hours I will have a new anterior cruciate ligament (ACL) and a tweeked meniscus. It's one of those things that I look forward to and dread at the same time, you know, surgery sucks, but the end results will mean I can run again or play some hoops. Here is a before picture.....
Pray for a speedy recovery.


Sunday, June 24, 2007

We Love Katamari

This is the weirdest video game, ever. Seriously, you have never seen anything like this. With Japanese elevator music playing in the background your goal is to roll over and acquire as many items (including people, animals, buildings and anything else imaginable). This game is whacked, but like crack. You cant get enough of it. I'm not really avideo game guy, but this has really caught my attention. Here is a video of one of my students playing.


Friday, June 22, 2007

One week from today.

If you aren't sold on the whole iPhone idea yet, watch THIS VIDEO and be wowed!


Thursday, June 21, 2007

Suspicious timing?

For the past week I have been having some "issues" with my phone. Finally today, it bit the dust. No e-mail, no text, no calls. The picture you see is the permanant screen now on my Cingular 8125. Notice the date. I was just bragging about how good my phone had been performing. Suspicious? The iPhone makes its debut next Friday.


Wednesday, June 20, 2007

My HMO story.

As many of you know, I'm having my knee reconstructed next week. I have had to get some pre-op work done over the past 2 weeks. Well, thanks to my meical insurance coverage, it's not so easy.
Here's my HMO hell story:
My surgeon set me up for surgery back in May. The date would be June 26, which I thought was awfully far away. That's how the medical world is these days, lots of scheduling conflicts and multiple hospitals and surgery facilities to work from. He told me I would have to get some pre-op work done right before the surgery date so I rolled with the punches. I went to my primary care doctor on Thursday (last week) and he runs this EKG on me with an AT LEAST 40 year old machine. It was a medical antique! He asked a bunch of personal history questions and then gave me two prescriptions. One for a chest x-ray and the other for blood work. The x-ray place I could go to at any time but the blood work I would have to get done 1 week before the surgery. I went on Monday (6/18) and got my x-ray done, at an out-sourced place. Not too long of a wait, but a bit of an inconvenience. Today (6/19) I went to get my blood work done at ANOTHER out-sourced place. After searching for the place for awhile, I finally found it and I handed the admin person my prescription. She looked at me funny and said, "We don't do this with HMO's, I'm sorry. You have to go back to your primary care physician and get instructions." Frustrated, I go back to my primary care doctor. They apologize and write another prescription, then send me to another out-sourced place. This time they got it right! Blood work done (another 30 minute wait). I call the surgeon and let his people know I have done all of the required pre-op stuff. She asks me about my insurance. Of course I don't know the answer, and still don't. All of this to ask, is this the way of the medical world? What happened to the days when you could actually have a doctor take your blood work and/or x-ray? Is it really that efficient to out source these? I wonder if next Tuesday (6/26), when I go to have surgery if there will be 5 or 6 different people hacking away on me, all with different responsibilities. I will soon find out.

Do you have an HMO hell story? Do tell.


Tuesday, June 19, 2007

LOST plane crash

Pretty amazing editing and synching of the infamous LOST plane crash. If you are a LOST fan it's a must watch.

(ht: TV Squad)


Welcome back Justin!

Justin is back from the Middle East, he is one of Americas finest fighting the War on Terror. If you have never checked his blog out, you should. Speaking of the War on Terror, it's fascinating to me that the world news media tries to portray this as a war on or in Iraq (or an oil war) and has done a good job at redefining the whole thing. One of my favorites is the way they said that Iraq and al-Qaida weren't associated and blah, blah, blah. Well once again, they are wrong and are just demonizing the US and our leadership. Today was "Operation Arrowhead Ripper" where 10,000 of our troops were up against an al-Qaida insurgency. In Iraq. Did you hear about this. Probably not. Why? Because the news media would have to re-nig or give the US props for fighting the War on Terror, not the war in Iraq.


Sunday, June 17, 2007


This car is so disturbing. Words cant describe. This is a total mockery of the Christian bumper sticker thing. Check out ALL of the pictures of the "Jesus Freak Car".

What is the worst Christian bumper sticker you have ever seen? Had?


Saturday, June 16, 2007

Japanese Soda

I bought this Japanese Marble Soda at Epcot. There is a marble in it and it tastes like bubble gum!


Friday, June 15, 2007

Calvary Jupiter Worship Project

Our worship team at church has been working on a project for the past several months. Well, it's just about ready. You can check it out here. Just click through the songs on the VIRB player. What do you think?


Thursday, June 14, 2007

Mac or PC?

I have been a Mac guy for about 8 or 9 years. Our first Mac was a first generation grape iMac. It was decked out at 333 GHZ and 64 MB. My phone is more powerful than that! Anyway, now we have a BlackBook, PowerBook and MacMini. Love 'em all! I have owned a PC and to be honest, there's a reason we don't have one now. Do you Mac or PC? Why?


Wednesday, June 13, 2007

Check out this blog...

My sister is now a blogger. Check her site out here and enjoy!


Tuesday, June 12, 2007

At the chrome dome

We made our way to Epcot from our hotel. First we went to the center peice, Spaceship Earth, then on to the World Showcase (our favorite). We ate lunch at Mexico (good chicken tacos) then on to Norway (ate a pastery), China (candy), Germany (choclolate covered pretzels, my peeps!), Italy (dinner was freakin' amazing!), USA, France, UK and Canada. The weather was perfect and the food rocked. If you get a chance to go to Epcot, check it out. I was bummed that the Japanese restaranunt was closed!. We then moved outside to the Mono-Rail. It's the highlight to Disney. A free ride round the wonderful parks! Have you ever riden the Mono-Rail round and round, just 'cause it's free? If not, you should.


Monday, June 11, 2007

Get away

Penny and I have taken a few days to get away from everything and just spend some much needed time together. We're very fortunate live only 2 and half hours away from the vacation capital of the world. We ate good pizza tonight and going to Epcot tomorrow. Where do you go to get away? Any suggestions for our next mini retreat?


Sunday, June 10, 2007

Great suggestions....

Everyones favorite flowerduster, Anne Jackson, has a great post entitled "Why I'll ditch your feed". Good insights and helps on how to be a better blogger from a true pro. Thanks Anne.


Some Thoughts....

I'm ready for a couple of days off with my wife. We are going to Orlando tomorrow (Monday) and hitting Epcot on Tuesday. A couple of days to chill before craziness kicks in again.

Whats up with all of the sequel movies? Is there anything original anymore Hollywood? We tried to watch an "original" movie last night. It was called "The Fountain" with Hugh Jackman. It really sucked. It made no sence to me.

I'm curious, if your a pastor to students, where do you take your students to camp?

The Dolphins got ANOTHER QB. The post-Marino years have been dreadful for the 'Fins. Jay Feidler, AJ Feeley, Gus Ferotte, Duante Culpepper, Joey Harrington and now.....Trent Green?

I love my new pack, quality material, holds my laptop(s) perfectly and has a ton of space.

The iPhone comes out in a couple of weeks. I'm tempted to go for it, but I know that there will be a newer more powerful and functional iPhone in a year. I might as well get the most out of my Pocket PC and then go for the iPhone. Anyone planning on buying one on June 29th?

I can finally smell a little bit and even taste some! I have had this altitude sickness hangover for almost 3 weeks!

"The most sacred thing I do is care... Today I am in charge of picking a great new healthcare plan. Right? That's what this is all about. Does that make me their doctor? Um, yes. Like a specialist." - Michael Scott on choosing a new healthcare package

Knee surgery countdown: 16 days!


Friday, June 08, 2007

At Camp: Friday

Our last moments of camp. We had breakfast, quiet time and of course pack up and sign out. Our students were incredible as they efficiantly did what they needed to do to get our bus packed and ready to go. We then went to our last Celebration. The student were really into the final team competition. we didn't win, but I think we were the loudest and most entusiastic, by far. We took our last pictures and hopped on the bus for our trip home. We stopped of at Indiatlanic Beach, just east of Melboune. We had pizza at this amazing beach pizza joint then had Cold Stone and Starbucks. We arrived home around 5, just as planned. I must say I was very happy to get home. God was good to us this week. I believe our students are more connected to each other and Jesus than they were last week. Student Life did a good job of programming and study.


Thursday, June 07, 2007

At Camp: Thursday

The day began in the cafeteria with another breakfast of pancakes and lots of other carbohydrates. We moved on to Quiet Time, Celebration (from Colossians 4) then to our Mission Site. Our teams did a great job of organizing and coordinating various activities, games, etc. We purchased a basketball goal from Walmart (I made 4 visits there this week!) and the Maintenance Team installed it in place of the old dilapited former hoop. This pleased the children and of course our host Miss Althea. The Rec Team put together a sweet game of kickball, then of course some basketball and toped it all off with our specialty game Medic Dodgeball. I think the kids at the Boys and Girls Club were more impacted by this game than anything else we contributed. The Program Team did a great job of alternating with the Rec Team the children in thir age groups. This made for an easier time of games and skits. At the end we all came together to have a "talk". One of our student leaders whom I have been discipling and mentoring for quite a while now, told his story and how Jesus has made an eternal impact on him. He did a great job, I was so proud of him. How cool is it when you see fruit from your ministry like that? ANyway, the children were blown away by this. We eventually said our goodbyes and went back to the Stetson campus. I took a group to the pool (a pre-shower) then went to dinner. We had a few surprises today: Aaron Mondok (Bryons son), Roger (a for ministry intern) and Nathan M. (a campus ministry guy). They all came to camp to hang out with our students, it was quite a treat for them! Our evening ended with Celebration then church time. I decided that we would treat the students to Sonic since we dont have any in SoFlo yet. I bought a bunch of chili dogs, burgers and fries. We had a great time chowing. I then shared with the students the nessecity of commitment from here on out. That camp shouldnt be a "one week stand" with Jesus, then back to your world of selfishness. I challenged them then opened up the time for them share what the Lord did in them this week. Cool stuff. The evening was complete with me getting in a litte trouble with the dorm RA. Yes me. I had bought an electronic whistle at the Mart. I thought it would be funny to blow it in the hallway. Well students thought it was the alarm and so did the RA. She called the campus security, etc. I confessed, appologized and it was over. I was embarrassed.


Wednesday, June 06, 2007

At Camp: Wednesday

I "slept in" a little bit this morning. Got up at 6:30 AM. Breakfast was good (the line was decent too) and we then had our Quiet Time, then Celebration. Wade Morris is a great communicator, as he quickly and I mean lightning fast, shared that salvation is the foundation, but there was an expectation of us to grow after this. Basically, grow up. Todd Agnew did a good job leading us in worship (he is not the most dynamic worship leader though; I think we are spoiled!). Our team ,Gold Rush, didn't win the Mission Team of the Day (yet!). We headed back to our Mission site. Last evening we put a plan of action together for today so that things would have an even flow to them. Our Maintenence Team had a few projects to jump on, the Program Team put together some skits, games and other inner active activities to engage with the Big Brother & Big Sister chidren. The Recreation Team put together a program for the outdoor activities and we were able to introduce the children to OUR game, Medic Dodgeball. All and all the Mission time was a god experience today. I felt like the children have connected with our students and our students have made an amazing attempt to serve the children here. We got back to the campus more exhausted today than yesterday. On the way back to campus, on the bus, I put the song "I Walk the Line" by Cash on the bus loud speakers and then "Hurt". Our students were more quiet and reflective at this time than the whole day. There was a sense of sacredness, kinda weird to me, it's Cash, the man in black. Someone asked on another blog, "what is the song for your generation?" I think the students answered that question today. After dinner we had an incredible Celebration with Todd Agnew and Wade Morris. Some of our students were really challenged by the message. We moved on to Church Group and had a time of sharing , downloading and strategy for tomorrows ministry on the Mission Site.

To follow camp from a students perspective go to the Calvary Students Blog


Tuesday, June 05, 2007

At Camp: Tuesday

Tuesday: We all stood in the long breakfast line to enjoy the fine collegiate grubbage. We then moved into Quiet Time, Celebration and then on to a Gold Rush Team meeting (the name of our team). We then hopped on our church bus (we call it the Calvary Cruiser) and headed to our mission site which is only about 2-3 miles away. We arrived at the Boys & Girls Club Spring Hill and got right down to business, serving the staff and the attending children (of the program). I must say I was so proud of my students as they engaged with the G & B Club children. After 4 hours on the mission site we headed back to campus. We had dinner, Celebration, Late Nite (crazy stuff!) ad Church Time. Tonight I went and bought 5 bags of Oreo Double Stuff and milk for our Church Time. This was a sweet day of downloading of the day, themeing the day (the students came up with "Meeting our Fears") sharing and prayer. I love the students that God has placed in our ministry. He is doing a work in their lives and I can't wait to see what happens the rest of this week.

To follow camp from a students perspective go to the Calvary Students Blog

At Camp: Monday

I have been involved with summer youth camps for almost 20 years. At 15 I worked my first summer camp as a maintenance guy at a sweet northeastern mountain camp. For the past 3 years I have kept my camping experiences closer to home here in the state of Florida. The camp that I have really been enjoying has been StudentLife Camps. They put on a great program and focus on the Bible from beginning to end.

We left Jupiter at 8 am to drive 2 and half hours north to the small town of DeLand where the small liberal arts college Stetson University calls home. This is the location of our camp. We arrived around 11:45 (we stopped a couple of times!) and got right into the swing of things. Wade Morris is the camp pastor. He's a very gifted communicator who loves Jesus and the Bible. The students really enjoyed his first session as a couple of our guys made commitments to Christ. Todd Agnew is the camp worship leader. His style is very different than what our students are used to, but he is very gifted and he effectively leads into God's prescience. You can tell that the staff here has really prayed over the whole camp week and the students attending. We are on the mission "track" of the camp so we will be involved in the DeLand community serving children at a Boys and Girls Club.

To follow camp from a students perspective go to the Calvary Students Blog


Monday, June 04, 2007

More George Bailey, Less Mr. Potter

By Life & Times guest blogger Tony Taylor

Last night my friend Bob came over to hang out with me. Bob is a solid guy, knows a great deal about every topic you could present in true Cliff Clavin fashion. I met Bob at a Cigar Shop in Lake Worth (a seaside SoFlo community) I frequent and sometimes hang out and sit a spell in… Whenever you hear about the health detriments of smoking I think the social benefits of the occasional smoke should also well be mentioned. We had some take out, lit up some Camacho Nicaraguan Maduro’s and had a great conversation catching up on each other’s lives, Bob was relating to me this new ministry he has started where he teaches boys who don’t have fathers how to bass fish and mentor and minister to them. Now Bob did this not ought of any obligation to a church, not out of any self gain; in fact it is very financially hard for him to carry this out. Bob felt that this was the best way he could serve His Savior.
Today I went to see a pastor friend of mine speak at his church’s main service. Now after the services, as I was leaving I had to opportunity to briefly converse with his parents before I left. Now, I have been doing a lot of soul searching and introspection lately about if I should be in New York, If I should be doing what I am doing, am I using my gifts fully now… The stuff that I think drives most Thirty-something’s crazy. Well, without missing a beat, out of the blue, my friend’s father gave me some words and advice that really meant a lot to me and spoke volumes in two or three sentences.
Anyway, what I really realized today is that when you surround yourself with the right people, you will never cease to be amazed at what you can learn, what you can find, and what you need to do. I am beginning to realize how important it is to just listen sometimes. I would encourage all of you this week, just to spend time with those people that have an impact on your life or you know you could have an impact on theirs. My post last month dealt with the lack of time free time. Well, I have been in Florida for almost 3 days now relaxing and reconnecting with people and I cannot convey strongly enough to you how important it is continue growing the strong relationships and friendships in your lives. I want to really make a huge effort to begin to be more the “George Bailey” in my community and less the “Mr Potter.” I’d encourage all of you the same.


Saturday, June 02, 2007

2008 Election

Im not a liberal. Not because of my "Evangelical roots" but because I'm conservative. That's my answer. Hilary Clinton, Barak Obama, Mit Romney, Rudy Guilliani and John McCain are not conservative. They all may try to align themselves more toward the center of the American political perspective but none are conservative. There is one potential Presidential candidate that is conservative and his name is Fred Dalton Thompson. The actor, the politician. He's from Tennessee and is a former Senator. Some of his most infamous roles have been in "Law and Order", "The Hunt for Red October", "Days of Thunder" and on and on. Fred is an actor and Fred is 6"7 (as in 6 foot 7 inches tall). Fred has a record of voting against abortion, for 2nd Amendment rights and is very clear about his stance towards terrorism and finishing the war that the enemy has begun. Click here to see his stance on "The Issues". Fred is very good as a communicator and has a very commanding presence. I think Fred would make a good President. Heck, all of the previously mentiioned candidates would make a good President, but Fred is conservative, so he would make a good conservative President. Run, Fred, Run. Read his blog here or subscribe to his pod cast here. You might like.


Friday, June 01, 2007

Some thoughts....

Just watched "Blood Diamond". Sad, brutal movie with a good story. The hardest part was dealing with Leo's horrible accent.

I'm leaving for camp on Monday. Alot of the students that we are bringing have never been to summer camp, let alone a Christian camp. Please pray for us.

We are finally getting a load of rain down here in SoFlo thanks to Tropical Storm Barry. My grass was looking pretty rough.

I had the oppportunity to speak at the baccalaureate of our local Christian school. What a tough crowd. Graduating seniors at a Christian school. I thought it went well.

On my iPod: Ray Charles "Ray" Soundtrack, Lifehouse "No Name Face", DJ Morphiziz "Best of the Submissions", Falling Up "Dawn Escapes"

My wife says I been snoring out of control this week. Is it because I'm getting old? Nope. It's the freakin' head cold that won't go away!

Why do restaurants have to put tomatoes on everything? I hate tomatoes.

It's summer TV season, you know reality shows. Yawn. Time to watch reruns of "The Office", "Extras", and catch up on movies.

I just baught a new pack. I have had my EastPak of 7 years. I'm not retiring it, just demoting it.