July 2010 Archives

July 30, 2010

All the Girls

You know that I'll never leave you. Not as long as she's with someone.png

I love xkcd.

July 25, 2010

The Cost of Spam


/found here

July 10, 2010

The Sky

August Sky.

Image by Pat Dalton......... via Flickr

I am ruled by the sky. I'm not sure when it became such a controlling part of my life; I imagine back when I was talking a lot of philosophy and world religion classes.

The sky is the biggest thing we know--if you can even call it a thing. It basically is everything that we are not; above us and the clouds and the planes and satellites. It's beyond the stars. There's nowhere you can be and not take a clear view up and see sky.

The moment you try to imagine the vastness of the sky, you are immediately and acutely aware of the finiteness of you. While its immeasurability removes any hope of escaping it, consider how far you would have to go just to take a point of sky directly above you and send it below the horizon. As a morning sun in Central Park can easily be a sunset in Kowloon, two people so far apart can be sharing the same bit of sky.

Why does this impact me so?

  • I am reminded that there are things bigger than me. Things that must squint to look down and see all the places I've been and things I've done. There are things I will never impact, and things that may never be impressed by my efforts.

  • I am reminded that I'm oblivious. I barely know everything that's happening in my life, let alone all the lives under the same sky I see. Half the time I don't even notice the sky itself--the biggest thing I know. How could I possibly recognize subtleties when I've overlooked the obvious?

  • My mountains become mole hills. Considering the first two, it's hard to find something in my life big enough to make a blip on humanity's radar, let alone all existence. The moment I want to complain I must admit that under this sky someone else has a greater right. It doesn't make me feel better, but it does reduce my moaning and increase my gratitude.

  • I am warned of the danger in self. It is looking to self and its issues that allows my worries, wishes and concerns to block out the existence of everything around me--even the sky itself. By looking only at my needs and feelings I disconnect with humanity and magnify my problems and their respective emotions. The wise Christian, Buddhist, Muslim, Hindu, Confucianist or Daoist knows the potential danger in self-led pursuits [link].

So forgive the occasional emo-sounding tweet regarding the sky. I am a guy with self-doubt, uncertainty and personal frustrations, but when I look away from my details and up to the sky I get a reminder of my real objectives: to live, to learn, to share and to appreciate.

July 6, 2010

For Love of the Game

Read this article a while back and felt it worth sharing. A girl’s softball team that hadn’t lost a game in two years offers to forfeit their match against a poorly prepared team who were playing their first game in school history. Instead of destroying the team that showed up with only two bats, no cleats or helmets, the Roncalli softball team offered to take the two hours to teach the other girls “how to get better, not how to get humiliated.”

In agreement with the author of the article, this is a great piece for those of us who still believe in sportsmanship, kindness and graciousness. Warm fuzzies all around.

Back to the blog mill

With the headache of a looming GC Session passed, I hope to do a little better at keeping Leftsider populated with more than just tweets. I hope to add more humor, more interesting items, and more anecdotes and eventually become the most viewed site on the web. Here’s to hope without expectation (har har).

It Pays to Be King

The Economist website has a brief entry that shows this interesting chart: a ratio of what a country’s political leader is paid in comparison to the country’s GDP per person. Fortunately, it seems Kenya’s prime minister Ralia Odinga rejected the pay increase that would have given him 240 times the amount the average person he governs!

Double Rainbow... what does it mean???

Hilarious clip of some dude camping in Yosemite recording a full double rainbow. It sounds stupid but just watch it through and tell me you’re not completely wierded by this. Soft guy or stoner? You decide.

July 2, 2010

On New Leadership

Every five years, the Seventh-day Adventist Church--the organization I work for--has a world business meeting where they elect leadership and refine policy. I'm currently in Atlanta attending my third such session, and this will be the second time that I'll return to find my boss clearing his office for the newly-elected.

As a pragmatic professional and a professional pragmatist, I work for two things: my passion and my paycheck. As long as those two things are appropriately served, I can work with anyone. As these two things have not yet changed as a result of the change in office, I don't expect a better (or worse) road in my future.

It would seem that there are many who seem to find this change exciting. I would caution these people to temper their thoughts. Change can only do three things: make things better, make things worse, or have no effect. All other influences aside, you have a 1 in 3 chance of improvement; behave accordingly.

There are also those who consider this a tragic end of an era. To these I would caution discretion: the last time I lost a boss at a General Conference session, he was replaced by someone who just happens to have been elected president of the organization this week. Besides if you have some personal agenda you are fighting for, there is no worse strategy than to yourself declare it dead.

Finally, to all who have some stake or vested interest in these happenings, I implore moderation. Consider it not absurd that someone who is not a part of your camp could, in fact aid and support your cause. Consider areas where collaborative progress is possible rather than drawing up lines of contention. And consider the health and vitality of the ecosystem over the success of a specific organism.

We are a family; a community. The success of an organization depends on its collective value--something I learned watching both outgoing superiors. Let's be gracious cooperators as we build the next five years of this organization's future.

Continue reading On New Leadership.