weekend on a monday and tuesday

That was the last couple days.  And now, as things go, I’m needing to get back into the swing of things.  Reviews, reflections, guitar playing, and soon NYC.  It is such a joy to serve, but there are times when I long for quiet and peace.

I find that in a few things I find peace and comfort and joy and solace, and I think over the last couple days I was able to be very directly with them.

Think of it this way (and I say this as much so you know what I’m dealing with as well as maybe what you’re dealing with, too): in a time of year where I need to swim deep underneath the water, it helps to take a really deep, soft breath between the sustaining breaths that take you the rest of the way down.

I wanted to try to define that more deeply, but let’s be honest with each other – it’s 12:48 and I’m up tomorrow at 6 to do laundry and get more work done.  But hey, soon I want to talk about some of the best things in my life… if you don’t know what those things are, well, then… stay tuned.

peace.

do not let your heart be troubled…

Today has been weird.  I’m not usually an anxious or worried person.  Life is too short and beautiful for it.  But today, boy, I’ve been anxious in spades.  I woke up this morning in a panic.  About relationships, about work, about my papers I need to write – about everything and anything.  And it was weird, because it didn’t make any sense.  It’s not as if I had any reason to be anxious or panicked.  The worst part is it feels lodged inside me.  My bones, my blood.  I mean, it could be caffiene, Sudafed, cabin fever, expectation… any of the above.  But it isn’t comfortable.  It isn’t me.

We had gathering in praise today, and before it, I went to the chapel and prayed very specifically for God to help me figure this out, and that I’m giving myself over to Him, relegating my will and control to Him.  In response (and this could have been me or the Holy Spirit, but I tend to think it’s both together), I recieved the same thing over and over again:

“Let not your heart be troubled.”

So I’d pray some more.

“Let not your heart be troubled.”

Over and over, I’d try to start again, and that’s what I heard, so resounding and real:

“Let not your heart be troubled.”

And so I figured after about the 7th or 8th time, I’d listen.  And so sure, I still feel anxious and insecure a little, but I’m remembering that ultimately, my heart, soul and strength are with my God, the Creator and Lord of Heaven and Earth.

I’ve also had the blessing of a community around me saying the same thing in various  ways… stay focused on the blessings… don’t worry, it’s easy to make something out of nothing… yeah, I’ve been feeling anxious, too, I’ve just prayed.

In many ways, I’ve felt the arms of God around me today.

why i love my life:

  1. I have a girlfriend named Erika
  2. Tomorrow is Valentine’s Day
  3. We had plans
  4. The biggest snowfall of the years hits the 13th and the 14th, burying both Cleveland and Erie in multiple inches of snow.
  5. We’re still celebrating Valentine’s Day… just by distance
  6. I think this might be one of the most fun Valentine’s Day I’ve had.

The end.

shamlessly taken from travis stevens

enjoy:

I ended up reading a Valentine’s Day gift advice article on MSN.com. Mind you, I didn’t read it because I needed any help; I happen to be very good at that sort of thing. Also, Katie isn’t caddy or inherently evil, and she doesn’t set me up to fail be secretly desiring some obscure Mayan artifact that she won’t tell me about and prepare herself for a meltdown come Valentine’s day when she opens… well, something else entirely. (a dead cat, shhhhh) She’s sweet like that.
This article that I read analyzed cliche V-Day gifts and suggested alternatives. There was truth in it, but not all cliches are bad. A woman wrote in saying how she was unfortunate enough to get a bunch of red roses with baby’s breath. To quote her:
Says Kristin, 40, of Lake Geneva, WI, “I was dating a guy who said he adored all my quirks and my adventurous spirit. Then he turned around and gave me a big bunch of roses with the lacy white stuff for Valentine’s. It was embarrassing, because I’m so not the kind of woman you give that to! It made me feel as if he didn’t really know me or get what I was all about.”

Adventurous spirit? It’s Valentine’s Day, and red roses, though cliche at whatever level… should be nice. They aren’t cheap (especially around Valentine’s Day). Should he have gotten her some mountain climbing gear? A sword? A gun? A pirate hat? I think that sometimes even a woman with an “adventurous spirit” might like something like roses. Cliche is usually cliche because it works. It’s classy. And it’s safe, especially for a gentleman that… you are only dating? Kristin is going just a little too far with her dissatisfaction. Also, Kristin- you live in Wisconsin; just be happy you didn’t get hunting gear, cheese, or a dead fish. Or… is that what you ARE all about?

The other thing was that in the entire 10 point article, only 2 vaguely referred to gifts for men. Again, my fiancee has no problems in this department, but I can imagine the letdown when gentlemen receive a tie or something similar for every gift-giving occasion.

9. A tie-What’s wrong with it: “Women actually have a harder time than men shopping at Valentine’s Day, because there are fewer gift options for men than for women,” says Silvestri. “Still, a tie is a big yawn.” It’s amazing how many women complain about generic gifts and then hit the tie aisle for their man. At best, the tie is by a great designer—which the guy likely won’t care about. At worst, it’s a novelty accessory featuring pigs, the Blues Brothers, or some other unwearable shtick. But usually, it’s just “about” the color the guy usually wears, meaning he already owns a dozen of ’em.

A simple solution: Head a little further into the menswear section and pick out a great scarf instead—it’s more casual and therefore more wearable; some fun or extra-soft (cashmere, maybe) socks; or another item that shows a dash more originality.

I think the tie analysis is dead on, but look at the solution. Just look. Buy your guy a great scarf? Fun socks? There are only 2 situations in which I would want to get a scarf.
1. It’s so cold outside that the skin on my neck is freezing and for some reason I am incapable of procuring a scarf
2. The gift giver made me a scarf
The casual scarf should not be mentioned as a generally acceptable Valentine’s gift for men. It’s preposterous. There are 4 main exceptions to this.
1. His family resides in New England family and “has money”

2. Your boyfriend likes to think he’s really artsy and that no one understands his struggle

3. Your boyfriend has part of his under-developed Siamese twin brother growing out of his neck

4. You are a man buying for a man
Fun socks? Fun… socks? I love a good pair of socks, but how DARE this person suggest FUN socks may serve as an acceptable V-Day offering after criticizing roses? If these socks are so much fun that they massage your feet, change color, AND make fart noises every time you step… well, you might be going in the right direction.

Here’s a suggestion- if there’s something specifically not cliche that you want for Valentine’s Day, ask for it. Also, if you have a male counterpart… don’t buy him a scarf unless your relationship falls under the exceptions listed above.

198

That’s what I weighed this morning.  I haven’t weighed that since I worked at American Standard on the floor and was sweating 8 hours a day.  In other words, I haven’t weighed this since really pre-college.

18 more pounds and I’ll have gone to my total goal… and maybe I’ll keep going to get the sexy swimsuit look (but let’s be honest, I don’t care that much)

Oh, and can I say that I weighed 250 at the end of my junior year of college?  52 pounds lost in 3 years.  Yessum.

I looked in the mirror and thought “not too bad, Adam, not too bad”.

peace.

why this will be a good weekend:

I will formulaicly prove why this weekend will be amazing:

W = A^(Ek^72)*(Ew+GCC)*((H/P)*Ef)

where:

W = Weekend
A = Adam
Ek = Erika Krall
Ew = Erik Wessel
GCC = Grove City College
H = Hershey
P = Philly
Ef = Erika’s friends

I’m already in a good mood, so plug in 9 for A, and Ek is certainly a 10.  Ew is a 10 also, and GCC is probably a 6… H = 9, P = 9, Ef = 10.

It works out to be something like 9^(1.6^76)

Now you tell me if that isn’t a great weekend.

1 month

It’s been one month since Erika and I went on our first date.  So, I suppose through some verbal gymnastics you can say we’ve been dating a month.  Neither one of would disagree with the sentiment.  Anyway, this is cool, and I wanted to share.

What’s the thing that I’ve learned the most in the last month, you ask?  Well, I’ll tell you.   I’m myself.  I’m the broken, bumbling dork that comprises me. I’m sweet sometimes, but I’m stupid sometimes, too.  And when it’s supposed to be, well, I suppose that all works itself out.  All I need to do is take slow steps in the same direction.

If you’ve ever head the band The Weepies, their song “Riga Girls” came on my computer.  It sounds like the last month.  The lyrics have nothing to do with it.  Just listen to the song.

peace.

my music

At the request of Erika, for our trip to Hershey this weekend, I was asked to put together music for the roadtrip. Well, given that I called in sick today (ugh… sickness), I ended up finishing it… 9 hours worth. Here:

I Can’t Get My Head Around It    Aimee Mann
Aint No Sunshine    Al Green
You Don’t Know My Name    Alicia Keys
Down To The River To Pray    Allison Kraus
1 Thing [CD-ROM Track]    Amerie
You Sent Me Flying    Amy Winehouse
The Bruised Reed    Anathallo
My Favorite Things    Andre 3000
My Lover Will Go    Ane Brun
Give Me the Simple Life    Annie Ross
Extra Ordinary Thing    Aqualung
Neighborhood 1 – Tunnels    Arcade Fire
Ainadamar, Second Image – Federico: IV. Quiero Cantar Entre las Explosiones    Atlanta Symphony Orchestra, Dawn Upshaw, Kelley O’Connor & Robert Spano
Bag Lady    Audio Adrenaline
Hypnotize    Audioslave
Love Shack    B52’s
Double Violin Concerto, I    Bach
River, Sea, Ocean    Badly Drawn Boy
It’s All Been Done    Barenaked Ladies
I’m Happy Just to Dance With You    The Beatles
When I’m Sixty-Four    The Beatles
Finding You    Bebo Norman
Think I’m In Love    Beck
Funny Little Frog    Belle and Sebastian
Zak and Sara    Ben Folds
Jane    Ben Folds Five
Ground on Down    Ben Harper
Emily    Bill Evans
You’re My Home    Billy Joel
Salty Air    Bitter:Sweet
Carolina Blues    Blues Traveler
Tomorrow Is A Long Time    Bob Dylan
First Day of my Life    Bright Eyes
Thankful    Caedmon’s Call
Long Line Of Cars    Cake
Yours and Mine    Calexico
Careless Whispers – Ben Folds, Rufus Wainwright    Careless Whispers
The Art Of Noise (feat Pharrell)    Cee-Lo
Saturday In The Park    Chicago
I’m A Fool    The Clarks
On A Joyride    Cody ChesnuTT
God Put a Smile Upon Your Face    Coldplay
I Just Don’t Think I’ll Ever G    Colin Hay
Call Me When You Get This    Corinne Bailey Rae
Reason to Believe    Dashboard Confessional
Standard Lines    Dashboard Confessional
Take Five    Dave Brubeck
Babylon    David Gray
Day by Day    Dc Talk
16 Military Wives    The Decemberists
I Don’t Want to Be    Degraw, Gavin
Zeros and Ones    Derek Webb
Wedding Dress    Derek Webb
Temptation    Diana Krall
From My Head To My Heart    Evan and Jaron
Shadowboxer    Fiona Apple
The First Single    THE FORMAT
Luck Be A Lady    Frank Sinatra
Rhyme for the Summertime    G. Love and Special Sauce
The Last Time    Gnarls Barkley
Friendship Update    Go! Team, The
See the World    Gomez
Ramona    Guster
Goodnight and Go    Imogen Heap
A Certain Shade Of Green    Incubus
Better Together    Jack Johnson
Twentysomething    Jamie Cullum
Canned Heat    Jamiroquai
Sinking    Jars of Clay
Get Right    Jennifer Lopez
Rabbit Fur Coat    Jenny Lewis/Watson Twins
01 – All Along The Watchtower    Jimi Hendrix
Lush Life    John Coltrane
Heaven    John Legend
St. Patrick’s Day    John Mayer
Slow Moves – Jose Gonzalez    Jose Gonzalez
Some Kind Of Wonderful    Joss Stone
Holy Ground    Justin Mcroberts
Señorita    Justin Timberlake
Touch the Sky    Kanye West/Lupe Fiasco
Sunshine    Keane
Misread    Kings of Convenience
Daft Punk Is Playing At My House    LCD Soundsystem
The ocean    Led Zeppelin
Bring Me Up    Lisa Loeb
Kick, Push    Lupe Fiasco
Secret    Madonna
Tomorrow    Mark Ronson, Q-Tip & Debi Nova
Woman    Maroon 5
Crown    Mason Jennings
Refuge    Matisyahu
Sumac Berries With Jon Doe    MF Doom
My Funny Valentine    Miles Davis
Love    Mos Def
Peer Gynt – Aases’s Death    Mozart
Step Up To The Microphone    Newsboys
One of These Things First    Nick Drake
Smoothie Song    Nickel Creek
Some Kind Of Beautiful    Nikka Costa
One Flight Down    Norah Jones
Gronlandic Edit    Of Montreal
Eva    Ozomatli
A Little Soul    Pete Rock
Sway    Peter Cincotti
Money Back Guarantee    Pigeon John
Such Great Heights    The Postal Service
Peaches    Presidents of The United States of America
Ordinary    The Quick
Optimistic    Radiohead
Edit    Regina Spektor
I’m Shakin’    Rooney
Don’t Feel Right (Radio Edit)    The Roots
Go or Go Ahead    Rufus Wainwright
Where I Belong    Sia
I Wish    Skee-Lo
Maybe You’re Gone    Sondre Lerche
I Turn My Camera On    Spoon
Holland    Sufjan Stevens
Evidence    Thelonious Monk
I’ve Always Loved You    Third Day
I Was a Lover    TV On the Radio
Mysterious Ways    U2
Hot Stage Lights    Van Hunt
Riga Girls    The Weepies
Burndt Jamb    Weezer
I’m the Man Who Loves You    Wilco
Destiny    Zero 7

peace.

inequality

  • Fred Poses, CEO of American Standard made over $5,000,000 in 2004.
  • Last week, American Standard announced they would be selling their Kitchen and Bath division, citing poor returns.  A portion of his statement is below:
    • “We’ve come a long way since the company went public in 1995,” said Poses. “Over the past 12 years, we’ve generated average annual total shareowner returns of about 18 percent. Over the past seven years, we reduced our debt by more than $1 billion, achieved investment grade ratings, and established our quarterly dividend and subsequently increased it. At the same time, we invested in our businesses to strengthen their overall capabilities.

      “Looking to the future, our board concluded that the separation plan we are announcing today is the best way to enhance shareowner value,” said Poses. “Operating separately, the businesses will benefit from greater strategic focus, increased market recognition, improved capital flexibility, and an increased ability to attract, retain and motivate employees.”

  • The stock  is now the highest  it has ever been, teetering around $52.00
  • My dad, who has worked at American Standard for almost 30 years, will be out of a job.

Here’s what’s upsetting for me:

Mr. Poses has a wife and two kids.  My dad has a wife and two kids.

Mr. Poses goes to work every day and faces challenges.  My dad goes to work everyday and faces challenges.

Mr. Poses goes on vacation.  My dad cleans furnaces on shutdown weeks so he can make money to take care of his wife and two kids, facing more challenges.

Mr. Poses has the control to wipe hundreds of jobs away.  My dad has the control to accept this.

Me?  Well.  Deep down, I’m really Mr. Poses, aren’t I?  I have my Marketing Degree, and am working with the CCO.  After college, Mr. Poses worked for two years with the Peace Corps in Peru.  I could go right into business, and in 30 years could be taking some dad’s job away for better than 18% returns.

If anyone asks you this week, be sure to tell them the price of blue collar, working class America is about 18%.

If anyone asks you this week, be sure to tell them the price of 18% is a 51 year old having to find a new job.

If anyone asks you this week, be sure to tell them the price of a 51 year old having to find a new job is a man who for a moment spits upon his education, his economy, and his aspiriations.

…but the man sees redemption.