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Tuesday, February 27, 2007

In an attempt to prove that he is not a girl, Bobby Crosby has grown a beard. Spring Training has started which is quite exciting for me and my household. Well, just me really. Melissa is kind of indifferent and Bauer is more of a football fan.

In other news that is pretty inconsequential when compared to real-world (not the TV show) things is the fact that 24 has taken yet another step in keeping the black man down. I was appalled when they killed Palmer, bummed when Curtis took a bullet, but now little Palmer. Are you kidding? The British dude can get a drill in the back, kidnapped by terrorists, and fight an alcohol addiction, and still function as a CTU agent, but the moment a black man takes a step to assert himself, the writers say enough is enough and have him killed. Weak. I bet Wayne will pull this one out but he should know that his days are numbered.

Today's video clip is the sequel to the original Elemarniak. It was made as an announcement video and is quite lame/funny. It was filmed in early 2000.

Monday, February 26, 2007

It is raining. How is that for a catchy intro! This weekend went pretty well. This past week, for various reasons, has been filled with some ups and downs. The good news is God is good and has provided for Mel and I in some really cool ways. The Lord has showed me a lot through friends and family which was been very helpful and encouraging. Yesterday Mel and I went to my grandparents to celebrate my grandma's (mom's mom) 69th birthday. My dad's parents were there as well. It was really good to spend time with my family. My grandpa (dad's dad) is healing well from his mini-stroke and there are no residual effects as of now. He went through a battery of tests that will be reviewed by doctors this week. He and my grandma will be eating dinner at our house this Thursday which should be fun.

James Cameron, the director of Titanic, has created a documentary a la The Da Vinci Code, de-bunking the resurrection of Jesus and claiming that he has a child with Mary Magdalene. He is set to reveal a series of caskets containing the so-called remains of Jesus himself (in addition to Mary and his son). The documentary will air before Easter on the Discovery Channel and on several other networks worldwide. This should be interesting. I suppose James Cameron doesn't like Jesus because he claims to be King of the World, when in fact, Mr. Cameron had Leo DiCaprio make a similar claim in his movie about that sinking ship. I get it now.

Today, as most of you already know, is Michael Bolton and Johnny Cash's birthday (coincidence, I think not!) And so, in honor of today's blessed jubilation, I am going to debut a video that is a personal favorite of mine. While attending Cal State Hayward, I assembled this visual masterpiece with the help of my dear friends
James and Justin. Prepare yourself as you escape in to the ferocious world of...FOOSBALL!!!

Dan's Playlist of the Week:

Anberlin - "Fin"
Sleeping at Last - "Tension & Thrill"
Dustin Kensrue - "Weary Saints"
Switchfoot - "Awakening"
Phil Wickham - "Always Forever"
New Found Glory - "When I Die"

Wednesday, February 21, 2007

In about seven years I will be 31 years old. Yesterday Melissa and I got the picture in the mail of the child we began sponsoring through World Vision. His name is Landani (8 years old) and he is from Swaziland. The average life span in Swaziland is 31 years. I can't fathom that. By comparison the average American lifespan is 78 years.

It is weird to think that places still exist where 48% of the people do not have access to clean water. It makes me sick to think of that. It really puts things in perspective for me considering I the things that I worry about; a career, house, car, etc. I can't help but think all of the things I aspire to and strive for are meaningless by comparison.

When Jesus asked me to care for widows and orphans I can't help but think he was not simply asking me to sponsor a child. So how should this play out in my life? There is so much more I should be doing. Each purchase I make, and even the decisions I make, should each be weighed against necessity or luxury. How can I afford to buy new clothes and go on vacations when little kids in other places don't even have access to water. I am not saying that I, or anyone else for that matter, should be completely legalistic and wear burlap, but we should be more careful about how we spend our time and money.

I don't know how this is going to play out in my life in the long run but it is good for me to have reminders (like the picture of Landani) that there is a world outside this utopian bubble that I live in. I often become so consumed in my own life and surroundings that I forget what really matters in this life. Pray for Landani. Pray for his single mother and their community in Swaziland. Check out World Vision for more information about how you can sponsor a
child today.

Tuesday, February 20, 2007

Alas, the three day weekend is over. Mel and I quite enjoyed ourselves as the video below will indicate. Sunday night, in a spur-of-the-moment fervor we decided to head to her grandparent's house in Monterey. Jake and Melissa joined in the festivities. We spent Monday at the beach and enjoyed the unseasonably warm weather. Mel's grandparents live on 17-mile drive so it is always fun to go down there. Not to be Debby Downer, but while we are on the topic of grandparents, my grandpa had a mini-stroke a few days ago. He is doing fine at this point and there appear to be no lingering side affects. It would be great if you could take a minute to pray for him. He is my dad's dad as well as my brother's dad's dad and my mom's father in law in addition to my grandma's husband.

Britney Spears found out that I shaved my head again and she decided to follow suit. What a poser. And in other news...It would appear as though Sufjan Stevens' next album will likely highlight the great state of California. You can check out the speculative news here.

Now for the video. The video features footage from last Thursday in Santa Cruz and yesterday in Monterey. Enjoy.

Friday, February 16, 2007

Valentine's Day was quite wonderful. Actually that is an understatement. Our dinner was quite lovely. I had beef sirloin. It was delectable. We strolled through the garden at Mudd's and admired the various herbs and horticulture. We ate expensive fondue and mingled with the San Ramon elite. Then we headed to the city.

I know I am someone who makes bold/extreme statements such as "that was the best _____ ever", or "so and so is my favorite band" but I can unequivocally say that the Switchfoot show that Mel and I went to was my favorite show ever. No exaggeration. I have been listening to them since the beginning of high school and to see them in such a small venue (Slim's) was pretty epic. They were just amazing. I love seeing a band that actually looks like they enjoy playing music and is happy to be on tour (i.e. Mute Math). Switchfoot did exactly that. They played for almost 2 hours. Mel and I wanted they to play for 2 more. If you don't have their new CD, "Oh!, Gravity", you need to get it. It's great. I could go on and on but I won't.

Yesterday we went to Santa Cruz and enjoyed a perfect 70 degree day at the beach. Bauer chased birds, Mel frolicked in the sand, and I allowed the tide to tickle my white little toes. Mel took the day off and it was fun to take full advantage of that.

feature length movie...
It's Friday and as such Iam featuring a movie fitting of this glorious occasion (and President's Day!). So after much ado and hype, I finally have a working online version of Living the Dream. In honor of your extreme patience I am also including the outtakes. They are pretty funny. This is the first movie that I made with editing software and it features some of the greatest acting and musical performances ever caught on film. Enjoy.

the outtakes...

Wednesday, February 14, 2007

Happy Valentine's day! Melissa and I are going to Mudd's (in San Ramon) for dinner and then we will be heading to the city to see Switchfoot and Copeland at Slim's. Needless to say I am quite excited. Melissa is taking tomorrow off so that we can do something fun. The weather is supposed to be really nice so we may head to Santa Cruz and take Bauer to the beach. Heck, we might even leave him there!

In honor of this glorious holiday, I am posting one of the worst videos ever created, Elemarniak. We (Mike Miller, Tony, Dan Pharis, Kyle, and I) created this video in 1999. It was meant to be an announcement video for the High School Ministry but it ended up being, well, kinda pointless. However, at the time, we thought this was quite possibly the funniest video ever made. I am also re-posting Living the Dream. It should work this time.

Tuesday, February 13, 2007

For whatever reason Living the Dream needs to be re-uploaded so I will be doing that tomorrow. Kinda frustrating but I can deal with it. However, as I previously playfully promised (alliteration baby!) I have a whole batch of other videos to upload.

It is time for you to escape in to the world of Baggy Pants. This awe-inspiring tale is sure to capture the heart of every viewer, young and old, rich and poor, bored and boring. Partake in the greatness that is The Legend of Baggy Pants!

This video was shot at Las Trampas in San Ramon during Spring, 2005. It features some of the best displays of over-acting and melodrama ever caught on film. A special side not: Most of this was shot by placing the camera on a log or rock because Dan and I were the only people there.

Monday, February 12, 2007

This weekend was pretty nice. I took the CBEST (standardized teaching test) on Saturday and I think that I did pretty well on that. I read today that some 10 year old boy aced the math section of the SAT this week so, at 24, I better be able to pass this.

Mel and I saw Night at the Museum and we liked it a lot. It was pretty funny and made us feel like little kids. Speaking of feeling like little kids, Melissa and I officially became big nerds this weekend as we purchased a Nintendo DS (the new "game boy"). She didn't really want me to get one, but boy has she changed her tune. She has almost played it twice as much as I have. She is a Mario addict. The system is super fun and I suppose it is okay to be dorky sometimes. I just said dorky.

Today is a very special day for the loyal readers of my blog. I am unveiling one of my most beloved videos,
Living the Dream. This video was made for one of my first college assignments and it went on to earn all sorts of accolades in addition to the respect and envy of all of my peers. If I had a million dollars for every life that has been touched by this video then I would have at least a million dollars. The numbers don't lie.

Check out Wednesday, February 14th's blog to see the video.

Thursday, February 08, 2007

Well folks, today is a big day. Not only does the creator of
Arrested Development, Michael Hurwitz, have a new show coming out (The Thick of It, based off a British show of the same name) but the insane and articulate president of Iran, Mahmoud Ahmadinejad, claims to have found the cure for AIDS. That's right folks. He found it. If he is right then this this one of the greatest medical discoveries in history. If he is wrong then this he is one of the biggest jerks in history. Only time, and his magic herb, will tell.

My mom had surgery today to repair her torn ACL. She acquired this injury while jumping for joy when the A's clinched the division back in September. Her knee had been bothering her since and when she got it x-rayed they informed her of the tear. Kinda funny but not funny all at the same time. I just talked to Her surgery went great and she is doing well.

Melissa spoke at theEVENT last night and did a really good job. She was super nervous but she kept the kids engaged and I thought she did quite well. We had 23 students there which is the most we have ever had so that is pretty encouraging. The group continues to grow, albeit, no thanks to me. I had to do music last night and it is surprising that anyone stayed. Anyway, I need to go write a paper. Viva la Iran.

Wednesday, February 07, 2007

Melissa is speaking at theEVENT tonight much to her chagrin. She will do fine (or else!). Here is the Bigger Snow video that I promised. There are some good spills and thrills involved. Let me know what you think.
In other news, Ben & Jerry's will be introducing a Stephen Colbert themed ice cream in the Spring. I enjoy ice cream and I happen to also indulge in the sweet decadence that is The Colbert Report, so needless to say, I am excited. You can read the story here.

Monday, February 05, 2007

I am back from Hume Lake. I can honestly say that I was more exhausted from this trip than from any mission trip or church trip that I have previously gone on. Don't get me wrong, the students were great (I only had to break up 2 fights; no joke!), it's just that I have difficulty thinking for myself half the time, let alone 19 middle schoolers.

Originally I named the trip "Bigger Snow", as a mockery/homage to the High School Ministry, but having returned, I have decided to rename it. The new name is either "Bigger Ice and Dirt" or "Bigger Proof That Global Warming Is In Fact A Reality." The hill to our cabin was a treacherous icy incline that caused many a sore buttocks. This is a picture of most of the group. It was one of those "lets see how this is going to look" practice pictures. Looks like we nailed it. I am going to have a video clip from the trip on here within the week so you can see middle schoolers eat it on the sled hill. It was hilarious.

I really am blessed to be doing what I am doing. The middle schoolers, though forgetful and needy, are endearing and fun to be around. Each time I would find myself getting annoyed or frustrated with them I had to remember what I was like as a 6th or 7th grader: needy and forgetful coupled with annoying and frustrating. They are great kids who remind me a lot of myself when I was there age and believe it or not, I haven't changed all that much.

Friday, February 02, 2007

Shane and Shane were so good it hurt my brain. I go to quite a few concerts and I often leave thinking, "man I could do that (with a few more lessons)." I left last night thinking, "man, I could never do that." Get it? I felt the opposite. Never mind. In short, they are probably two of the most talented musicians I have ever seen live and that includes Tim McGraw and dc talk (both of which I have been fortunate enough to see).

On the way out I saw several people eating frozen yogurt. I coveted their dairy delicacy so I persuaded Jen to let us go there. Jen was driving us and she is almost 30 so she generally has the say on such matters. Anyway, we walked to the frozen yogurt place and entered just as the guy was closing shop. He seemed both happy and sad upon seeing us, likely due to the fact that there were 9 of us and he wanted to go home but desperately needed the business. Unbeknown to me, he had already closed his frozen yogurt machine. Bust. I settled for Green Tea ice cream (note to self: don't order that again) and on the way out my heart told me to look across the street. And there it was: Yogurt Castle. That is where those other lucky saps got their frozen yogurt! In my haste I didn't notice the warm glow of its inviting yellow sign. I forgave Jen for taking us to the wrong place and then we were off. I will save you from my elevator story for now.

We leave (as in me and the MSM, not Mel) for Hume today. Weather.com says it should be in the mid-40's with no snow all week. Awesome. Instead of talking about God this weekend I bet they will show "An Inconvenient Truth." Who knows, maybe even Al Gore will be the keynote speaker? One can only hope for such things.

Thursday, February 01, 2007

Tonight I get to go see Shane & Shane which should be quite enjoyable. Generally not my type of music but I really dig these guys. They rip on guitar as only two dudes with the same name rocking acoustic guitars and flawless harmonies can.
We had 20 students at
MSM last night which was cool. The group seems to grow continually which is encouraging. Argo spoke and as usual was quite entertaining. They were eating out of his hand.
I leave for Hume tomorrow so I am getting some last minute items out of the way in anticipation of the first trip that I actually have to lead. It should be an adventure.
Speaking of adventure, I am posting the following video that was shot during my trip to Egypt a couple years ago. The shot features Deej and I in our man dresses aboard the SS Salacia (or something like that) on the Nile River. There was a big gala on the boat where everyone was asked to dress in traditional Egyptian garb. I was tired so I took a nap and asked Deej to rent me a man dress (not the real name) when he picked up he. He agreed to do so but in the process inadvertently rented me the female version. The only thing more humiliating that wearing a man dress is wearing one that is intended for women. Turned out that I wore the same one as Eunice Barnett. What a treat.

This video is rated PG for hinting at brief nudity and profane references to the male anatomy.