Monday, October 31, 2005

Cheese and Corn

Today while listening to WDJC, Birmingham's Christian radio station, I found myself attacked with corn, and the dj readily admitted it.

The dj brought up a recent news story about a woman in California being sued by the Hershey Company. Her business, Milkdudz, sells children's clothing. Hershey is suing because of the name, which is similar to their product, Milkduds. The dj then said, "I wonder if Hershey's is suing for a '100 Grand'." "(Get it, the candy bar.)" Followed by, "I hear the lawyers are expecting a big 'Pay Day'." He then admitted that he knew those were corny jokes, but today was just one of those days. Just to clarify, those probably weren't exact quotes, but, you get the idea.

I just shook my head, and thought...please, if this guy has a co-host, come back soon. And if not, get him a co host. (I think I was listening during Mark and Mac's hour, so there should have been two of them. They are pretty fun to listen to together, but today, with just one of them...well..."two heads are better than one.")

Sunday, October 30, 2005

My Birthdate's Meaning

Your Birthdate: December 22

While sometimes employing unorthodox approaches, you are capable of handling large scale undertakings.
You assume great responsibility and work long and hard toward completion.
Often, especially in the early part of life, there is rigidity or stubbornness, and a tendency to repress feelings.

Idealistic, you work for the greater good with a good deal of inner strength and charisma.
An extremely capable organizer, but likely to paint with broad strokes rather than detail.
You are very aware and intuitive.
You are subject to a good deal of nervous tension.

Saturday, October 22, 2005

Madam Secretary Rice and Mr. Secretary Straw

Wow. Today has been most wonderful. I was blessed to see Secretary of State Condoleeza Rice and British Foreign Secretary Jack Straw deliver the Frank A. Nix lecture at The University of Alabama today, courtesy of the Blackburn Institute on campus. The lectures are usually private, reserved only for the fellows of the Blackburn Institute, but due to the nature of this lecture, it was generously made open to the public.

Because the room only holds about 1600 people, and 400 of the seats were already reserved, I decided to get to the conference center early to stand in line. I awoke around 7:00 am, and I was at the conference center by 8:05. There were already about 50 people in front of me. By 9:15 the line was stretched all the way around the building, so that I couldn't see the end. We began to go inside around 9:45. There was a metal detector at the door, and policemen and secret service were everywhere! I sat on the 3rd or 4th row behind the reserved seats. (Not too shabby, I thought!)

Dr. Rice gave an excellent speech, relating events to the crowd very well. She made connections that we would understand and sympathize with. She related the Civil Rights movement, and the black struggle for freedom with the Iraqi struggle for freedom, and the fight for democracy. One of her most used phrases was "impatient patriots." I agreed with most of what she said, and there were only one or two places where my ear perked up, and I questioned something...but, I can't even remember what they were now. I chuckled, though, when the question and answer session arrived. No matter what the question, she found a way to relate it to the fight for freedom and democracy. Politicians...

Secretary Straw was also fascinating to hear. Besides his cool accent, he also garnered more laughs than did Secretary Rice. But, he also had more "umms", so his speech went slightly longer. He discussed the need to make politics local, no matter what office you hold. Even as Foreign Secretary or Secretary of State, one must consider and remember the local man, the common man.

At the end, Coach Mike Shula entered the room and presented Dr. Rice and Mr. Straw a football. When he entered, he received a standing ovation from many. I, for one, did not stand. We had given Secretaries Rice and Straw standing ovations, and rightly so, but...our football coach??? He receives one every Saturday to a much larger crowd. I just saw no comparison, and therefore no need to stand.

Aaaahh. The chance to hear speakers of such high caliber as Dr. Rice and Mr. Straw (for free, I might add), is something only a university can offer. I am so thankful that I can particpate in these activities, and experience these once-in-a-lifetime opportunities.

I have attached a link to the whole lecture below, if you are interested. :-)

Frank A. Nix Lecture - Sec. of State Condoleezza Rice and British Foreign Sec. Jack Straw

Tuesday, October 18, 2005

Intramural Soccer

Well, last night marked the end of regular season intramural soccer. The team I played for, HPSA (Honors Program Student Association), went into the game 1-2. (Our one win was a forfeit - the other team didn't have enough players.) Last night's game was crucial, because in order to go to the playoffs, we had to have another win (must have a 50% win ratio and a sportsmanship rating of 2.75 on a 4.0 scale). Before the game, we actually received our team t-shirts. They are a bright green, with HPSA written boldly across the front. Underneath HPSA was the phrase, "Blood Blood Blood." Steven Rogers played on our team, and he and I just sort of pondered that phrase. Very intimidating, huh? I chose jersey number 56. It was one of the few smalls, and I think my dad had something close to that number when he played football in high school. the game. We played the Dingleberries. Great team name, I think. They had a record of 0-3 entering the game. So, we were pretty evenly matched. HPSA played very well. I think it was the best game we've had all season. We all played our positions very nicely. We had some great passes, which we haven't seen a lot of this season. Both defense and offense worked together great. With less than a minute left in the game, the score was 2-2, and we had the ball on the Dingleberries side of the field. With a second and a half left, the lights went out. (Now, this is not new to our games. We may have had one game where the lights didn't go out.) It takes 20 minutes for the lights to come back on, because they have to cool down, and then slowly come back on. We wanted our second and a half, because they weren't going to let us have a tiebreaker/shootout. We hoped to score with one good kick, from a little less than midfield. But alas, we couldn't pull it off. It was an indirect kick, and the Dingleberries set up a wall. And, the wall worked. They blocked our shot. Game over.

Our final record is 1-2-1. So, unless something changes, we won't make it to the playoffs, because our win percentage is 33.3%. But, it was fun while it lasted.

Last night brought back memories of my old playing days, starting the game at 9:00 pm, playing co-ed, and feeling the crisp night air burning my lungs as I ran. I even earned a bruise. :-) Now, I must retire my cleats, my shin guards, and my super long soccer socks 'til next time. I shall miss them, but I know that when I next place my feet in those worn and weathered cleats, my feet will feel right comfortable and know exactly what to do.

Sunday, October 16, 2005

An interesting fact, a German custom, Middle Eastern food, and lots of friends...

I have been meaning to post for a couple of days now, so I'll try to order this post into the events I want to discuss…

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I am currently reading Summer for the Gods: The Scopes Trial and America’s Continuing Debate over Science and Religion, by Edward J. Larson.* I was slowly making my way through the first part of the book, when I read two words that made me do a double-take: Primitive Baptist. So of course, I read the paragraph another two or three times, just to make sure I was reading correctly. The following is an excerpt:

“Fundamentalism drew first blood in Tennessee today,” a January 20, 1925 article in the Commercial Appeal reported, “in the introduction of a bill in the Legislature by Senator [John A.] Shelton of Savannah to make it a felony to teach evolution in the public schools of the state.” A day later, John W. Butler offered similar legislation in the House of Representatives. Both legislators had campaigned on the issue and their actions were predictable. Butler had justified his proposal on Bryanesque grounds: “If we are to exist as a nation the principles upon which our Government is founded must not be destroyed, which they surely would be if…we set the Bible aside as being untrue and put evolution in its place.” Butler was a little-known Democratic farmer-legislator and Primitive Baptist lay leader. For him, public schools served to promote citizenship based on biblical concepts of morality. Evolutionary beliefs undermined those concepts. Driven by such reasoning, Butler proposed making it a misdemeanor, punishable by a maximum fine of $500, for a public school teacher “ to teach any theory that denies the story of the Divine Creation of man as taught in the Bible, and to teach instead that man had descended from a lower order of animal.” Most of Butler’s colleagues apparently agreed with this proposal, because six days later the House passed it without any amendments.

Mr. Butler, a Primitive Baptist, wrote the piece of legislation that formed the background for the Scopes Trial. There we are, scattered throughout history. The trial itself is another issue, for another time...but, I will leave you with this…It was all staged. The town of Dayton simply wanted publicity, and Mr. Scopes agreed to take the fall. The end result was something much larger.

*Larson, Edward J., Summer for the Gods: The Scopes Trial and America’s Continuing Debate over Science and Religion (Cambridge, Harvard UP, 1997), 49-50.

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I have become friends with a student from Germany, who is studying at Alabama this year. She is in one of my history classes. She recently had surgery on her right wrist, and has been unable to take notes. So, I typed my notes and gave them to her. She then asked me to go to Starbucks with her after the next class, and I agreed. I had planned to just grab dinner, while she drank coffee. I had been looking forward to an opportunity to just sit and chat with her. When we got to the Ferguson Center, our student center, she was really encouraging me to get something to drink. She then explained how it was a German custom that if someone did something nice for you, you bought them a drink in return. I couldn’t turn her down, and I had what she had: an Iced Mocha Latte. It was actually pretty good. We had a lovely conversation…discussing the upcoming Oktoberfest, her wearing a durdle (sp?), the loveliness of Alabama, Bavaria, etc. I thoroughly enjoyed myself, and I was disappointed that I wouldn’t be able to attend Oktoberfest with her. Go talk with a foreigner…it’s amazing what you can learn.

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Friday night I had the opportunity to visit with my roommate from this past summer who attends Samford University in Birmingham. We went to dinner with one of her suitemates. I can always count on Jennifer to take me somewhere exciting to eat. Over the summer, we had Indian food together. This time…it was Middle Eastern at a Middle Eastern Food Festival in downtown Birmingham at a Greek Orthodox church. I had a kimbee sandwich. I learned it was a mixture of lamb meat, spices, bread, etc., in a pita with lettuce and other spices and sauces. It was really good. I had never had lamb before. Jennifer’s analogy was “meatloaf.” I didn’t have “lamb meat”; I had a combination of lamb and other stuff. Courtney, her suitemate, had Falfala. I also had hummuce, which wasn’t a favorite of mine. It was my second time to try it, and my second time to dislike it. We wanted to see some Greek dancing…but we had to leave so I could make it to my next event…

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…which was Elder Guy Hunt and Sister Ann Smith’s wedding. Lovely, lovely, and lovely. Wonderful conversation…good time…great friends. Beautiful singing as well. And, I did cry.

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Saturday, Elyanaweh and I went to Ebeneezer PB’s meeting. We heard six different preachers during the morning and afternoon services. The meeting was greatly blessed. I heard some wonderful sermons. The food was great, and the fellowship was excellent.

And…the Alabama Crimson Tide beat the Ole Miss Rebels, 13-10. We are now 6-0. Roll Tide!!!!!!!!!

Sorry for the long post…just a lot has happened.

Monday, October 10, 2005


I would like to retract my recommendation of Vault. Please see my dear friend, Booty Mellicious's comment, and my reply, on the previous post.

Thursday, October 06, 2005

Jello and Life

Today I ate lunch at J.J. Doster Cafe on campus. We have a restaurant and hospitality major within my college, and they completely manage the cafe on Tuesdays, Wednesdays, and Thursdays. The food is great, as are the prices.

My meal consisted of pizza, mashed potatoes, squash casserole, and...jello! I haven't had jello in quite sometime! It was a special treat, and even included more than one flavor. (I had red, green, and yellow...which are not flavors, know what I mean). As I was thoroughly enjoying my jello, this thought occured to me...

We should live our life like jello: When life jiggles, stay firm, and don't fall apart.

I'm not sure how much sense that made...but I'm going on very few hours of sleep this week (2 papers and a test). You can let me know what you think.

And, on the note of very little sleep, I must recommend Vault, for those who need a quick pick me up. The drink's catch phrase is, "Drinks like a soda. Kicks like an energy drink." Vault is very much like the old Surge drink. I was amazed. I had one yesterday, and I was bouncing of the walls. I had one this morning, and my leg was jiggling all during lunch. I'm quite sure it was the Vault, and not my jello jigglers...but I'll let you ponder that one.

Wednesday, October 05, 2005

Say What???

The following is an excerpt from a letter to the editor of The Tuscaloosa News (October 4th, 2005).**

There is no question that Shula’s decision to play Prothro was dead wrong. I am not positive, but my gut tells me Shula had a slightly different upbringing than Prothro. Along with that different upbringing came different opportunities.

Prothro will now most likely miss the rest of the season because of Shula’s despicable decision. I can only hope and pray Shula did not hinder Prothro’s ability to support himself and his family in the future.

First, I must say that Saturday's game pitting the Alabama Crimson Tide vs. the Florida Gators was the best game I have been to while here at the Capstone. For those of you who may not know, we beat #5 Florida, 31-3. It was a wonderful victory. The victory, however, was bittersweet. One of our star players, Tyrone Protho was injured in the 4th quarter. He broke his leg. This incident quickly gave way to a debate over whether Shula should have kept Prothro in the game with only a little less than a quarter to go. We had heard the debate last year when Brodie Croyle was injured. So, here we go again.

I personally support Shula's decision to keep him in the game. Florida could have come back at any moment, and this was a crucial game that would be a key win for us. Plus, I would imagine that Prothro wanted to be in the game. He loves football and does very well at it. My heart certainly goes out to Prothro. I loved enthusiastically cheering for him each and every game. He was part of the soul of the team. But, I am confident he will return with full force next year. He just has that determination.

I was most appalled at this letter to the editor, though. Mr. Gerber seems to imply that this injury may leave Prothro unable to support his family or earn a living. Did Mr. Prothro lose his leg Mr. Gerber?? Are you implying that his only career option was professional football, and hinting even further that this is true because he is black?? Pardon me if I'm wrong, Mr. Gerber, but Tyrone Prothro is not only playing football at The University of Alabama, but he is earning an outstanding education, which will leave him with a good number of career options. Please leave your racial attitudes and illogical conclusions at home next time, Mr. Gerber. We will not tolerate them here.

Me, oh me. I was quite fired up today.

**Gerber, Micah*. Letter. "Shame on Shula for Playing Prothro." The Tuscaloosa News. 4 October 2005.

*Mr. Gerber is from Gainsville, FL.

Saturday, October 01, 2005

I Rode the Bull

Yes, yes I did. I rode the mechanical bull at Campus Crusade's 3rd annual cookout. I walked over to the fraternity house where the cookout was being held around 4:00 this afternoon. The weather was wonderful! We had barbecue and baked beans for dinner. And, the fellowship was great. There were many people there that I haven't seen in quite some time, because they have graduated, or just simply moved to another stage in their life.

The first time I rode the bull, my adrenaline was rushing. I had to sign a waiver saying I wouldn't sue the company if I got hurt. (As the night wore on, though, only the guys were getting "hurt" - some of them were hit by the bull before it could get stopped because they just kept hanging on. The girls just sorta fell off.) The first time, I rode twice, probably at the 1 or 2 level. The next time I rode, after dinner, I think the man in charge probably put the bull on a 2 and 3 level. It was great fun. And, I got a good workout, too. :-)