Tuesday, January 31, 2006

Preacher Man

I thought I'd let you all know that this monkey (pictured at left) preached at the 9am service last Sunday morning! One of our "ministry coaches" John--the shouter--has been choosing topics and having people tag-team the sermon with him--a cross between a chat and a full-on sermon, i guess.

Anyway, it was lovely, as always. . . like to hear it, here it goes.

p.s. monkey-pose occurred after securing a second yahtzee!, bringing him close to beating me, but not close enough.

Monday, January 30, 2006

"Who wants to party?"

"Hey dad, look at my left hand,
You know what would fit nicely in here?"

Friday, January 27, 2006

"Tengo un sueño"

Originally uploaded by andrewgaines.
Ok, I don't want to make the blog too political but I ran accross this story this morning and I thought it was hilarious. The US put up a news ticker on a building they own in Havana broadcasting human rights and democracy messages in big red scrolling letters. I don't want to hate on the US government too much but this is just funny. And to make it even funnier the ticker features quotes from MLK and Lincoln. Correct me if I'm wrong, but the conflict between the US and Cuba has nothing to do with Slavery or Civil Rights. I have faith enough in our leaders to believe that they can engage in some better diplomatic relations with Cuba other than this. I bet it did provide some inspiration for a few and maybe just laughs for others. Read all about it: article

Also, check out this video. It's this artist that I've just begun to pay attention to. His name is Mark Horowitz and he did a national dinner tour. Check out how he did it: video

Have a good week-end everybody. I haven't seen you West Coast Gaines' in a while. Let's hang out soon.

Wednesday, January 25, 2006

Postcard of Andy

Postcard of Andy
Originally uploaded by andrewgaines.
South of the border Venezuela is brimming with activity. Hugo Chavez is as cutting edge as he is controversial. Hate it or love it, he's doing more than any political leader today. Summoning the ideology of Simon Bolivar, Chavez is pushing for Venezuelan sovereignty, participatoy democracy, and the elimination of corruption among other things. But does he have too much authority? Is he a threat to democracy? Everywhere? There's an interesting article on the bbc about Venezuela's new attraction. Disfrutalo: article

Canada elected Stephen Harper as their new Prime Minister this week. It's newsworthy to me because a lot of the Canadians at work aren't too happy about this (the seperatists minds are going crazy!). Apparently Harper isn't too popular. Think W politics with Gore personality. Check it, eh: article

I've been listening to this radio show online from Swarthmore College in Pennslyvania. On the show students utilyze the online free telephone service Skype and an Iraqui telephone book to call people in Baghdad. I was skeptikal at first but it's actually pretty good. It's good for "filling in the gaps" of what Mainstream media doesn't cover. Listen to the real people!: and read this from the New Yorker, yes the New Yorker:
I've been listening a lot to this band Ben and Bruno. They're from Michigan, the kids will like it and the parents are okay with it. Boom: Link

I just watched 'Punch Drunk Love'. "A Tour de Force that will leave you breathless". Well not really, but it was good and very blue.

I want to re-visit this film 'Baraka' I remember watching this when I lived in U.P. with Ben. It was then that I solidified myself as a Global Studies student and life long learner. What a beautiful world: Look

I shaved my mustache. I'm joining the YMCA with great intent to be the best squash player I can be.

At work we're developing a Bio-Diesel processor. Pretty soon we'll be making 150 gallons of Bio-Diesel a day to fuel are trucks and employees vehicles.

I'm hoping to move by the end of the month. I've found some pretty sweet places but LA is super expensive so I'm thinking about asking for a raise.

And just to keep everybody happy, Fox News Reports that Rosie O'Donnell is planning a new sitcom about a gay woman who moves in with her ex-husband. Hooray for Fox News: Read

That's what I've been thinking about, in my life.

Tuesday, January 24, 2006

Osama, not Bin Laden

So, I thought I'd let you know that we finally watched Osama last night. I liked it (I think we both liked it) and was really surprised how fearful it made me of the way other people--women especially--are living in this same world at this same time that we are. I couldn't believe that these things were happening across the world as we were watching the movie--that people can't relax and be at peace in their own homes, in their own skin. Instead of leaving me depressed in the end, however, it kind of excited me to use the freedom and opportunities we have here to make a change in other places like Afghanistan. No, this does not mean I'm considering military service.

I was kind of wondering what the rest of you thought after seeing it (those of you who have). . .

Thursday, January 19, 2006

More Ramblings...extended version

POP QUIZ: What are you looking at?
(congrats to Jake)

Here are a couple news stories I think are interesting:

CHINA: Their economy is booming but their government is as oppressive as ever. The growing rich/poor divide raises a lot of questions. Here is an article about a recent protest in a poorer rural area where protesters were beaten and even killed by the police. Also the BBC did a series on China that is worth a listen (particulary the segment on the Chinese youth's view of America) Listen

EVOLUTION VS. CREATION: Science vs. Religion, now more than ever Christians need to respond thoughtfully to this issue. Here is a article written from the secular point of view that raises the question "Is God an Accident", and tries to explain religion psychologically. Here is a short Dallas Willard article on the science v. faith dilema. Finally, the Catholic Church on intelligent design READ

ANIMAL RIGHTS: A whale swims into downtown London, the Department of Justice arrests extreme animal rights activists for arson, a former speechwriter (also a Christian) for president Bush resigns his position and writes a book called "Dominion" on how to ethically treat animals:

Although animal welfare is usually thought of as a liberal cause, Scully argues that it ought to be a central issue for religious conservatives.

"Religious people . . . hold a kind and merciful view of life, the faith of the broken, the hounded, the hopeless," he wrote. "Yet too often, they will not extend that spirit to our fellow creatures. More than anything else, I hope with this book to speak to those people."

we sang St. Francis' "All Creatures of our God and King" last Sunday, an article that might have me eating certain kinds of meat in the future, and watching "Grizzly Man" this week got me thinking about the animal rights issue again. I think this is something we should all pay a little more attention to. (pete made me say that)

Funniest story of the week was the Steelers fan who had a heart attack when Jerome Bettis fumbled. READ I think I'm finally over that game...

That's all...what do you think???
What have you been thinking about???

Sunday, January 15, 2006

Martin Luther King Jr.

"Injustice anywhere is a threat to justice everywhere... But though I was initially disappointed at being categorized as an extremist, as I continued to think about the matter I gradually gained a measure of satisfaction from the label. Was not Jesus an extremist for love: "Love your enemies, bless them that curse you, do good to them that hate you, and pray for them which despitefully use you, and persecute you." Was not Amos an extremist for justice: "Let justice roll down like waters and righteousness like an ever-flowing stream." Was not Paul an extremist for the Christian gospel: "I bear in my body the marks of the Lord Jesus." Was not Martin Luther an extremist: "Here I stand; I cannot do otherwise, so help me God." And John Bunyan: "I will stay in jail to the end of my days before I make a butchery of my conscience." And Abraham Lincoln: "This nation cannot survive half slave and half free." And Thomas Jefferson: "We hold these truths to be self-evident, that an men are created equal ..." So the question is not whether we will be extremists, but what kind of extremists we will be. We we be extremists for hate or for love? Will we be extremist for the preservation of injustice or for the extension of justice? In that dramatic scene on Calvary's hill three men were crucified. We must never forget that all three were crucified for the same crime---the crime of extremism. Two were extremists for immorality, and thus fell below their environment. The other, Jesus Christ, was an extremist for love, truth and goodness, and thereby rose above his environment. Perhaps the South, the nation and the world are in dire need of creative extremists."

Letter from Birmingham Prison, April 6, 1963 complete transcript

Thursday, January 12, 2006

Solar powered manufacturing

Solar panels
Originally uploaded by andrewgaines.
American Apparel's now going solar! We just installed solar panels on the roof at the factory which will power 30% of the building and take us off the power grid in Southern California. We'll be having a ribbon cutting ceremony sometime in February and rumor has it that the Govenator might be there. Any and all of the West Coast Gaines' are welcome to come. Let's hope for a sunny winter.

Wednesday, January 11, 2006

She's Gone Country!

She's Gone Country!
Originally uploaded by jacobgaines.
Abigail's gettin' back to her Texas roots today as she is going on-air and being interviewed by "America's Most Listened to Country Station," which amazingly enough is in LA. Abigail will be in Burbank today representing the Homework House. We should be able to get a copy of the interview.. I reckon ya'll may wanna take a gander so I'll try to post it on the blog for ya'll to have a listen.

Tuesday, January 10, 2006

A letter from Gramie. . .

Today we received a letter from Gramie that read as follows (to be read in Gramie voice, of course):

"Dear Sarah & Wesley,
Thank you so much for letting me share your Christmas with you--
I know I will enjoy the book--but I'm afraid I fell in love with Petie and June-so maybe I'll find me one--
Thanks again-

So. . . was that a thanks but no thanks on the book?
Maybe her comments about wanting to take Petie home were really hints.

I say we all pitch in to get her a dog.

Wednesday, January 04, 2006

Hold on Tight. . .

For those of you who've been hanging onto the edges of your seats wondering WHEN Fort Wayne's library renovations will be finished and where we are in the progress ("We can't wait any longer!! you must tell us!!"), there was a great article in our newspaper yesterday, talking about it (and, more importantly, expressing the importance we place on the kids in our community and in building a library that appeals to them and suits their needs).

Check it out here.

Three cheers for Fort Wayne's librarians!!

Caleb "picks a ROSE" for USC!

Have sum time during lunch to say "good luck" to Norm, Steve and Ben (all 3 are 17-10). The Bottomline: Steve and Ben have Texas, Norm has USC, Snoop to the D-O-double G. For shizzle my nizzle. Have fun watching hopefully the greatest NCAA football game ever, whether you're under the Cali sunset or snuggled with your wizzie on the sofizzie sippin hot cocizzie in the midwizzle with drizzle.

Tuesday, January 03, 2006

Norman says 'Noles all the way!

Here's the scenario tonite:

If Stormin' Norman's Florida State Seminoles upset Joe Pa's Nittany Lions, then he wins outright. If Penn State wins, then it comes down to tomorrow's Rose Bowl with Ben and Steve taking Texas and Norm, USC. USC wins, then so does Norm, but if Texas upsets (yeah right....and it will rain in San Diego, right?,...wrong!), then Ben and Steve face-off with their total points being the tie breaker. Ben = 55, Steve =72. Norman is in the driver seat; it's his to win. But you never know...

Please give the winner (whether it be Norm tonite or Ben or Steve tomorrow) a phone call to say congrats rather than pay $. Or you may want to respond to my final blog of results. As we sit right now, Ange and I are are battling out for last place, WHOOO HOOO! Jake, you just missed by like 1 game the final race.