08.31.14 Quiet Time

Then Daniel went to his house and made the matter known to Hananiah, Mishael, and Azariah, his companions, and told them to seek mercy from the God of heaven concerning this mystery, so that Daniel and his companions might not be destroyed with the rest of the wise men of Babylon. Then the mystery was revealed to Daniel in a vision of the night. Then Daniel blessed the God of heaven. (Daniel‬ ‭2‬:‭17-19‬ ESV)

Daniel told the King’s servant that His Majesty’s request would be fulfilled before he even prayed to God about it. This is how much he trusted. The Lord will always hear and answer the prayers of the faithful.

When Trolling goes too far

I don’t have a problem with a good Troll.  It can be a great opportunity to laugh at myself, or some construct of our society.  But there is a line that should not be cross, which unfortunately is being overstepped with every increasing frequency.

Look no further than this commercial for Staples:

Growing up, I used to cringe every time this commercial would run.  Not just because it signified to close of yet another summer, but it was flat out wrong.

How they gonna show this dad sashaying down the store aisle just because he’s buying back to school supplies?  Look at how dejected his children are!!!  

I was incredulous.  As an adolescent, my mind couldn’t process these emotions.  The fact that someone thought it was cool to employ a popular Christmas song to express the joy parents felt when sending their children back to school was utter sacrilege.  I didn’t care how cleaver or ironic Staples brass thought it was, a line had been crossed.  Weren’t adults supposed to be, you know, adults about things?  It was bad enough most children across the land (I say most because i suspect some students loved school and were eager to return) were unenthusiastic about spending 7-hours a day, 9-months out of the year in the same building.  But now, someone was piking fun at us whilst we suffered.

Little did I know Staples had opened up a Pandora’s box, that would the blueprint for pretty much every “edgy” or “in your face” marketing campaign to come after this.

I’ll never forgive you Staples.  

Yo, where my Roshes at b?

ugh…

One of the most hopeless feelings is dealing with the United States Post Office.  This is one of the few bastions of absolute power left in modern American Society.  Need to mail something quickly during your lunch break?  Too bad; there’s only one counter open, and the clerk is in know hurry.  Mail need to be help while you’re on holiday?  Fill out this form.  And don’t let your passport expire (which reminds me).  They have all the power.  You know it, they know it, and they remind you of this fact at every waking moment.  But the worst is finding a lost package.

So I spent a while mulling what kicks I would be copping next (i’m kinda obsessive-compulsive when it comes to most purchases that are not food).  I finally decided on these:

(pic from freshnessmag.com)
(pic from freshnessmag.com)

I found my size for a fair price, and made the purchase.  I was giddy once I received the tracking info, but that expectation turned to anxiety once the shoes traveled from Boston, MA to Nashua, NH.

WTF? 

What’s that for? I exclaimed (get your mind out of the gutter).  Why would the package travel North, further away from me, than towards the Commonwealth?  Then, when they do arrive in town, the latest update shows they departed early this morning.

Yo, where my Roshes at b?

Anxiety lead to borderline anger as I realized that there was little I could do, being the receiver.  The Post Office won’t even entertain my inquiries once they find out I’m not the sender, so why bother.

My feet wait.

You think you’re being held back, but you aren’t.

I think Seal is one of the baddest dudes out there.  It’s not just the fact that he’s a Grammy Award winning international Pop Star.  Seal gets love all over the world because his musical sound is unique and never compromising.  That voice; so distinctive, his music often causes me to consider how I view things.

The other day I was listening to his first album, track number 4, a song called Crazy.  

Seal
Seal (When he was wilder, younger, with more hair).

The bridge of the sound goes like this:

In a sky full of people only some want to fly
Isn’t that crazy
In a world full of people only some want to fly
Isn’t that crazy

I played the song a second time.

I listened to the bridge again:

In a sky full of people only some want to fly
Isn’t that crazy
In a world full of people only some want to fly
Isn’t that crazy

Earlier, I had delete a few apps on my phone, cleared numerous hyperlinks from my internet capable devices, as well as my Netflix queue.  All these things were time sinks.  I was beginning to regret the decision, fearing I would be bored of nothing to do.  But then I realized, this was the pattern of my own self sabotage.  

Why wouldn’t I want more free time?  Isn’t this the excuse I give for not pursuing all these great ideas in my head? 

The safe and easy thing was to continue to allow addictive tendencies to rob me of the one true resource we have, which is time.  The safe and easy thing was to continue to waste countless hours (and I do mean countless) playing video games, watching movies, lurking message boards looking for cheap laughs, and window shopping on eBay.  The safe and easy thing was to continue to make excuses, instead of facing the truth; I didn’t want to fly.

No more.

I want to fly.

 Isn’t that crazy?

The begining of my love of Sole

Gotta catch 'em all.
Gotta catch ’em all.

I’m into sneakers. I’ve been into sneakers, shoes, kicks, trainers, runners, tennis, whatever you call them for a long time.

I always thought a nice pair of shoes were something to be appreciated, but the inception of desire was when I first laid eyes on that special pair.

It was my sophomore year of high school.  I alighted the bus and made my way through campus to the lunchroom doors.  In my way was a small crowd. Curious to see what was going on, I joined the throng.

I was dumbfounded by what I saw.  The only way to describe them was a pair of marshmallow moon boots.  The shoes were made of a bright royal blue material; something like high-tech polyurethane.  There was a semi-translucent sole with circular indentations meant to enhance grip and traction.  At first I couldn’t tell what brand shoe they were, until I spotted a small white swoosh near the toe area. There is so much more about the shoe that boggled my mind, but I just don’t have the time to share it all.

I had to know more.  My buddy gave me the skinny: Nike Air Foamposite One, the newest and most innovative in footwear tech to come out of Beaverton, OR.  My mind was blown; how could create such a thing?

I was determined to get them, alas my heart sunk when I found out the retail price: $179.99.  I just started working during summers, but that price was way out of my reach.  The same buddy told me he knew a dude who bought two pairs: one to rock (wear) and another to hoop in (play basketball).  I was incredulous, but inspired nonetheless.  I wasn’t able to raise the necessary funds for my pair until sometime later.  I scoured virtually every obscure sneaker spot in NYC looking for that elusive size 11.5.  While hunting, other Nike offerings caught my attention.  At my height during College, I had over thirty pairs of sneakers in my rotation.  It’s was where virtually all my money went.  I didn’t care; I was like Ash Ketchum.  My “sole” purpose was to acquire.

I eventually did score my pair of Nike Air Foamposite Ones.  They are the up there, along with my current rotation; a fraction of what it used to be.  The quantity may have decreased due to new priorities (wife, children, Cheez-its, etc.) but the love still remains.

What was/is your love, and what started it all for you?

 

More Laughter

My children live the life.  They wake up everyday just ready for the World.  My son often asks me “what are we going to do today dad?” of “Where are we going?”  I often respond, “Well son, i’m going to work, but i’m sure mommy has something fun planned for you all.”

The other day, our son was playing or watching TV on the couch.  Effortlessly, he let loose the most hearty laugh I have heard from a 4-year old.  It struck my wife as well too, who looked up from tending to our 2-week old son.  I asked, “Kay-Kay, what’s so funny?” Without even batting an eye he replied, “I don’t know; I just laughed”.

I thought about why my son’s jovial expression struck me so.  I realized that deep down, laughter had become something reserved for when all my problems/issues are resolved.  I had started a retirement fund for laughter, which I would not be able to touch until I turn 65 and a 1/2 (or whatever the retirement age is).  To me, the only people who were allowed laugh freely were people who don’t have to face the problems of regular daily life (i.e. Athletes, celebrities, and everyone else for whom money is not an issue).  

I dismissed the chortle and giggle of children, based upon the premise that they were to young to know any better; they laugh out of naivete.  But maybe I am the one who is missing the party.

What do you think?   How can we reclaim the healing power of a good guffaw?