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As of late I have been writing less and less. This is not intentional, it is just that finding the time to write and a subject to focus on has become more difficult.

I was going to write a large entry on Iraq and oil and some of the problems with those two words but I have lost some interest in discussing politics with people. It seems that no matter what facts are presented on certain subjects there will still be those who keep their close-minded views (no matter how open-minded they claim to be). Instead, it easier and less stressful to write about topics that make me happy.

My time constraints have been brought about because of my recent focus on work. I may not be the biggest fan, but I will give one-hundred percent till the end.

So what am I passionate about and wanting to write about? Christianity and religion. I know what you’re thinking and I can tell you it’s not what you think. I am not going to post about repentance or damnation. Instead, I would like to occasionally write about some of the things that I have been experiencing at church. A lot of these things have to deal with the current problems with the Christian church, how we live in a somewhat scary world, and things of the like. I will try for it not to be a downer (but no guarantees) and keep it in the context of current events.

Stay tuned…

I have been slowly phasing out an e-mail address that I have had since high school and I think I am finally ready to dump it and never look back.

From about sophomore year in college I have received an extremely large amount of spam at this particular address. I found out my junior year that Texas Tech had given a lot of student addresses (read: all) to third party companies to send out mass communications with the student population. As a result, these companies sold our addresses to other places which in turn sold them to spammers. Since my was tied to this e-mail account I received an even larger amount of spam.

So, over the past month or so I have been going through and changing all of my communication e-mail addresses on sites to my Gmail address. I think I have been able to get most of them, though I’ve stumbled on a few that I completely forgot about.

It will be really nice to never have to look at this e-mail account ever again.

I have no idea why Dreamcatcher did not have a bigger following. It has an awesome cast, it’s a Stephen King novel, and the story itself is great!

I remember watching it for the first time and thinking to myself that it was one of the best sci-fi thriller movies I had ever seen. It came on TV tonight so I had to watch it and post something.

I recently changed the company I am consulting for and have found myself in a scene out of Office Space.

It’s an open concept type of office, with half cubicles. The lighting is awful, with a lot of people enjoying the dark, dank feeling that a programmer usually does. A lot of the overhead lights are actually disconnected.

Before I talk about the next part thing I am going to post a disclaimer. I have no problem with foreign workers, I have no problem with them working here. I do have a problem when they do not speak English within the walls of the company. I consider this place a place of “Code Pushing”. Most of the developers here are foreigners who are just staying here long enough to save up some money to go back to their countries of origin. What does this lead to? Crappy code. These programmers do not care about code quality, the design of their work, etc. Instead, they care about getting their paycheck and rolling out the software.

As a result of all of this they have hired me and four others to fix all of the bugs in the multiple systems that the company has. Frustrating. It is an inadequate working environment. I have a 15″ monitor which is horrible for looking at stored procedures that span across multiple pages.

Lately I have been going to different churches in the Dallas area trying to find a place to settle down. Yesterday I visited The Village Church. At first glance it looks like a small, tight-knit, community church, but when I walked in the door I knew there was something different. First, the age demographic of the church is definitely younger than what most people are probably used to seeing. Most of the congregation is in their mid-20’s and 30’s with a few older than that. Secondly, the dress is casual. At first this struck me as a downside because I have always been taught that church is a business casual (minimum) occasion. After sitting through the service and looking at the congregation more I realized that there were some who were dressed up a bit more and they were not getting looked at as out of place or “weird”.

The sermon is what made me decide that this is more than likely the church I will continually attend. The pastor is youg(er), energetic, and honest (more on that later). His opening remarks were about a mission that the church has setup and the philosophy behind it. These remarks started with what the money was going to do. He explained that the missionaries are simply advisors to the people where they are placed. They do not take on an administrative role or try to run things, they are simply there to offer help where it is needed. The reasoning behind this is that the churches and projects that are being worked on need to survive long after the missionaries are gone and there is no way to ensure that if the missionaries are there holding the hands of those running the operation or doing it themselves. The pastor continued and talked about how a meld into the local communities is needed for any of these projects to succeed and said that this was why they built things like schools in villages that did not have them, hospitals in cities that desperately needed them, and churches in those that wanted them. He said that as he sat in a coffee shop a woman approached him and quietly asked him “You are the one who can tell me about Jesus right?”. The people who want to know more know where to find the right people.

After the discussion about the missions the actual sermon began and the topic was all of the new visitors that this particular church receives this time of year. The pastor remarked that the sharp increase in attendance over the past few years in late-July and early-August was an oddity but he had finally figured that with school starting sooner and people getting back from vacation earlier, they were getting back in the “groove” of going to church and this was happening in these months. So he continued, stating that today would merely be about what the church stood for and the way things were done there. “Perfect”, was the first thought that came to my mind. He offered a disclaimer at the beginning, saying, “This is the way we do things here, it is not necessarily ‘the’ way, it is merely ‘a’ way. If it is not for you, I am not offended, there are churches out there that will worship the way you want to and have service the way you want”. The sermon continued and he talked about some specific verses in the Bible and discussed how had come to this particular church. He made some funny remarks, had some great analogies, and stated his points very well. I am going to save his points for a later date because I feel they deserve a post of their own, especially since I very much agree with them.

My point of this post was to say that I think I’ve found a church that I would love to attend on Sunday. One where it is not a “punch my timecard” type of atmosphere.

Had some time this weekend to watch a few movies inbetween my stints of coding.

First up, Just Friends with Ryan Reynolds in the lead role. I am a pretty Reynolds fan (come on, Van Wilder, can’t do much better than that) so I had somewhat high expectations for this movie. I wasn’t disappointed. Most of the movie was pure humor with only a few places being kind of dull or slow. Reynolds didn’t let me down, he was witty and even had some of the Van Wilder aura about him.

Then I watched The Big White with its whole slew of names, from Robin Williams to Giovanni Ribisi. It is a dark comedy similar to Garden State or I Heart Huckabee. I got a few laughs out of it and thoroughly enjoyed it.

And last but not least, I saw Talladega Nights. I enjoyed it, but it was not as good as I thought it would be. It was another one of these movies where the point of the movie is kind of lost to make room for the humor. There was a lot of poking fun at southerners and kind of at Christians, but most of the subtle jokes were left for the right-wing with shots being taken left and right. I don’t necessarily mind this except for the fact that we are so bombarded with politics in this country that it’s a little a frustrating. Everywhere we turn there is someone else’s political agenda being shoved down our throats, it’s just getting old, no matter who it’s directed at.