Monday, December 31, 2007

2007: Year in Review

Favorite Movie Watched in a Theater:
The Departed
Favorite Movie Watched for the First Time at Home:
Empire of the Sun
Favorite Fiction Book Read for the First Time:
The Shack by William P. Young
Favorite Nonfiction Book Read for the First Time:
The Cost of Discipleship by Dietrich Bonhoeffer
Favorite Family Moment:
The birth of my son Jack
Favorite 24 Moment:
Jack taking down Abu Fayed and his men with no back-up
Least Favorite 24 Moment:
The entire White House strand of Season 6
Favorite Survivor Moment:
Correctly predicting that Todd would win it all
Favorite Ministry Moment:
Putting together small group booklets with the Writing Team
Favorite Lesson Learned:
Humility and brokenness cover a multitude of ignornaces
Favorite California Moment:
Throwing rocks into the river with Matthew in Healdsburg
Favorite Sports Moment Watched:
Peyton Manning finally getting the monkey off his back
Favorite Matthew Moment:
Taking the MAX downtown together
Favorit Jack Moment:
Him rolling over by using his the weight of his head to create momentum
Favorite Married Moment:
When Karina surprised me at school and took me out to dinner after I turned in my last paper
Favorite Friend Moment:
Meeting Dave McAllister in Olympia to watch Gone Baby Gone
Favorite Job Switch:
When my job changed at the church
Favorite Bible Verse from the Year:
Zechariah 4:10: For who has despised the small things?

Happy New Year. Can't wait to see what 2008 holds. Hopefully it will hold a graduation from seminary for me. Hopefully it will also hold a certain 3 year-old becoming self-sufficient on the toilet. Hope it holds great moments for anyone who is reading this.

Thursday, December 20, 2007

God Grew Tired of Us

Karina and I just watched this documentary called "God Grew Tired of Us." It is about Sudanese boys who fled the war-torn country in the 80s. They walked about 1,000 miles and ended up in a refugee camp in Kenya. When they arrived at this camp, they thought they would stay there for a matter of weeks or months and then return home. The war raged on, though, and many were at the camp for over a decade. Eventually, some of them, now young adults, were invited to come to the U.S. The documentary follows the lives of three of them as the adjust to American culture, and as they struggle to keep their culture and to continue to help those back in their country.
The title of the documentary comes from one of the young men, John Bul, as he talks about how he tried to process the war and the genicide. He said that, at the same, he concluded that God had grown tired of his people, and of their sins, and had abandoned them. Although it is not reflected in the title, by the time he is in the U.S. John Bul has not by any stretch abandoned his faith in God and in Christianity. The three young men, John Bul in particular, reflect a very genuine faith in Christ. In one classic scene, John Bul is trying to understand Christmas traditions in the U.S. He asks, "What is Santa Claus? Is he in the Bible? And the Christmas trees. They are very beautiful, but are they are in the Bible? In my country we celebrat Christmas also, but we celebrate the birth of Jesus Christ." The great part about his evaluation is that he was not in the least being critical or judgmental. He was genuinely confused about what was going on. It was a good reminder in the Christmas season of the fact that we want our sons (and neighbors) to see the real celebration of Christmas in how we handle ourselves.
Anyway, I thought this movie was worth mentioning. It is heartbreaking at times, but it is not gruesome. It is only PG. It was well worth the viewing.
OTHER UPDATES
I know you all are dying to know this, but Matthew pooped twice on the toilet Tuesday night. We are still very much in the midst of the training, but it was a big step. When he finishes potty training, he gets a bike.
Also, Survivor fans, I already have had 8 people ask to get in on the next pick 'em pool: Greg and Andrea Moffat, Ami McNay, Meagan and Eric Wood, Mirranda Meacham, and Karina and I. I don't know yet if there will be 16, 18, or 20 contestants. That said, I think we can fill this up and have every contestant picked.
And Ami, do you really think they'll bring Ethan back a THIRD time? Would they really do that with such a mediocre player?
I want to see Jonathan and Ozzy from that Cook Islands season, and I also want to see Michelle and Yau Man from last season.
Merry Christmas!

Tuesday, December 18, 2007

My Son Jack


I know I have been blogging lately about Matthew because of potty training and other exciting adventures, but I wanted to take some time to blog about My Son Jack.
Karina and I are convinced that Jack is the easiest baby in the history of babies. It is not anything that we have done. We take no credit for it. He just is an extremely easy-going baby. I had a reality check when I mentioned that he was sleeping through the night (he started at or 8 weeks) and a friend at seminary said that his son didn't start sleeping through the night until he was 14 months! I know that is not typical, but it still reminded me of how easy Jack has been. He sleeps really well, feeds really well, and in general is low-maintenance.





Not that I really like stereotypes, but Jack's tendencies make me wonder if we are going to have another child. In other words, he strikes me as a stereotypical middle child, as opposed to a typical youngest child. Sometimes I have to make sure I am taking the initiative to spend time with him because he is not very demanding. Matthew was an easy baby on the grand scale, but Jack is really off the charts.





Jack, while he is not demanding (most of the time) is very relational. He loves interacting. You can see how big his eyes get. He loves to smile, laugh, and make fun cooing noises. He also really loves to watch his brother. He gets a real kick out of him.







Jack has a great, delightful open-mouth smile. It is just contagious.
Jack likes music too (he told me). One of the songs playing on my laptop when we were in the hospital after he was born was "Thank You for Loving Me" by Bon Jovi (go ahead and mock me; I like Bon Jovi). He has alwasy got a kick out of it when I sing that song to him. It always makes me think of him now.





I am so thankful for my family. I love my wife so much, and I absolutely love my boys. I love being a dad, and I specifically love being a dad for boys (I am sure that I am biased since right now boys are all that I have). I just got done reading A Christmas Carol by Charles Dickens. My mom had read it to us as kids, and I have seen more versions of it than I can count (I even played Jacob Marley in one version when I was a kid). Reading it now, though, when I have sons, I found myself crying (literally) at the parts about Tiny Tim. The grief of Bob Cratchet over his son was so real. The thought of having such a special bond with a child makes the thought of tragedy that much more painful. All that said, I love pursuing a special bond with my boys. I feel like Matt and I have that, and it is fun to feel that begin to develop more and more with Jack. I love my little guy. Can't wait to get to know him better and to discover more about what he is like.

Monday, December 17, 2007

Survivor Finale

And the winner is. . .me! I swear this wasn't rigged.
My boy Todd pulled it off. They kept wanting to get him off, but they just never pulled the trigger. I was stoked. Not only because of the fact that I picked Todd to win it, but because I thought he had played the best game.
Congrats for Dan Stump (Courtney, the field) for a second place finish, to Andrea Moffat (Amanda) for finishing third, and to my lovely wife Karina (Denise) for finishing in a strong fourth.
Let's just acknoweldge reality. Todd killed in the final tribal council. Courtney did well. Amamda tanked. I think she was just not as mentally tough as the other two. She was simply spent. Todd and Courtney were both proud of how they played. That went over well on the jury.
Honestly, though, Todd's final tribal council performance may have been the best ever. He won at least two votes right then and there (Jamie and JR). I think Todd is probably in my top 5 all-time. Hatch, Brian, Tina, and Tom round it out. All of them were able to control the game and yet still pull off the jury vote.
So, now you can all send me the ten dollars we promised we would put in for this pool. I accept PayPal. I'll be waiting.
Seriously, though, thanks for all who played. It was a blast for me and it made the season even more interesting than it would have been.
I think we should do it again in the Spring. Here is what I think. I think people should all email me or comment on the blog if they are interested. Then I will put all the names in a hat and choose the order that the picks will go. Then, after episode one, we will all pick.
I am stoked that some former survivors will be on this next season. Not so sure about the superfans, though. Are they all going to be nerds, or will they be able to hold their own? It's hard for me to imagine that they won't get stomped. Hope I'm wrong (sort of).
In closing, our Survivor Pool covered four states. My sister Ami McNay (Erik) picked from Georgia. Sarah and Daren Blomquist (Dave and Leslie) picked from SoCal. My best friend Dave (James) picked from Washington. And Eric and Meagan Wood (JR and Aaron), Greg and Andrea Moffat (Jamie and Amanda), Dan and Ang Stump (the field and Frosti), and Karina and I (Denise and Todd) all picked from lovely Oregon. Maybe we can add another state this next time.
Fun times.

Friday, December 14, 2007

Survivor: Stump is Cut in Half

Well, we are down to the final four in Survivor. P.G. is the latest victim. She was one of Stump's picks when he joined last and took the field (consisting of Ashley, Sherea, Courtney, and P.G.). So Dan Stump is still in it, but his real chance at victory seems to be cut down. I didn't really like P.G. most of the game because she wasn't very nice. I almost wanted to root for her at the end, though, because she was such a fighting. Surprisingly good in the challenges. She almost pulled this one off.
That said, whew. Again. My boy Todd has made it all the way to the Final Four. While people keep saying that he backstabbed everyone, I can't think of anyone that he backstabbed other than those who Amanda and Courtney also backstabbed. Denise did the same, except that she was left out of the decision on J.R.
Final Four Analysis
If Todd or Amanda wins, he or she will take their place amongst, in my opinion, the very deserving winners of Survivor. They have controlled the game, and that is what makes someone great. Todd or Amanda will take his or her place amongst such greats as Hatch, Tina, Brian, Tom, and Yul.
If Denise wins, she will take her place near the top of the not-so-deserving winners. That list would include Sandra, Aras, Jenna, and Ethan (I am saying that mostly to rile up my sister).
If Courtney wins, she will take her place near the bottom of that not-so-deserving winners.
I think Amanda missed her chance of winning it all. I don't see her making the Final Two unless she wins the last challenge. And, come to think of it, I guess that is not so far out of the question. I think Todd would be smart to try to get her out in fourth, though.
Denise and Courtney both want to go up against Todd. This gives Todd a great chance of making the Final Two, but not such a great chance of winning it.
I think Amanda would beat any of the other three.
I think Denise would beat Courtney and might beat Todd.
I think Todd would beat Courtney, and he might pull it off against Denise.
I don't think Courtney can beat anyone. She may make the finals, though. She has just done nothing impressive. At least Denise has the strategy of keeping Todd around. She has resisted some ploys to get him off.
Remaining Question
If this season is going to have a Final Two, which the preview indicated, why did the jury start at the person in 10th place? That would make for a jury of 8 people. That really opens them up to the possibility of a tie. If there going to be a twist? Is the person in third place not going to be able to vote? It doesn't make sense to me.

Congrats to Andrea Moffat (Amanda), Dan Stump (Courtney), Karina Franklin (Denise), and me (Todd) for being the Final Four in our first pick 'em. Let's see who brings home the bacon.

Go Todd!

Monday, December 10, 2007

Top 5's of 2007

In case anyone is interested, I thought I would give my personal top 5's from 2007. I'm gonna do it in four different categories:
Movies seen in the theater
Fiction books read for the first time
Nonfiction books read for the first time
Songs listened to for the first time

Movies Seen in the Theater
Now I am only including movies that came out during this year. In 2007 I saw Stranger than Fiction, The Departed, and Pan's Labyrinth. Those would probably be my top 3, but they all came out last year. By my count I have only seen 7 movies in the theater that came out this year. Here are the top 5:
5. Amazing Grace: This was the movie about William Wilberforce, and his campaign to end the slave trade in England. I thought it was done decently, but the story was so good that it made it all really worthwhile. It is inspiring. What a hero.
4. The Bourne Ultimatum: Who doesn't love a good Bourne movie? I thought this one was just as great as the first two. The scene where he was chasing the guy on top of the buildings was amazing. I don't get the title, though. I don't remember any real ultimatum in the movie. Come to think of it, I don't remember Jason Bourne being especially supreme in the Bourne Supremacy. Really, only the first movie's title makes sense (The Bourne Identity).
3. Ocean's 13: It was just a blast to watch, especially the Mexico strand. Senor Zapata. Awesome!
2. Live Free or Die Hard: And this ends our sequel category. What can I say? I'm a sucker for Die Hard movies. This one was just as great as the others, although the bad guy was nothing compared to Jeremy Irons in the third installment. What was with all the sequels this summer. I didn't even mention Shrek 3 or Pirates 3 (probably because I haven't seen either).
1. Gone Baby Gone: I just saw this movie last month with Dave Mc. It was intensely powerful. It is not for the faint of heart. It is very heavy. It is written by the author of Mystic River, so if you saw that, this has a similar mood. Ben Afflect directed this one, and I think he has found his true calling. I am underimpressed with him as an actor, but he did a great job directing this movie. His brother Casey held his own in the lead. Morgan Freeman and Michelle Monaghan was good too. But Ed Harris really lit up the screen. He never disappoints.
Honorable Mention for Spiderman 3. Dishonorable Mention for Transformers. Sorry, I know everyone else loved it. I'm the weird one.
Fiction Books Read for the First Time
5. The Road by Cormac McCarthy. This is a post-apocolyptic novel about a father and a son trying to survive. I thought it was good at points, but at other points I felt like I wasn't really getting it. It certainly was not a pleasant read. It was dark, but really powerful. I felt like I was detached and then the ending was deeply emotional to me (and the ending was not a surprise or anything like that).
4. The English Assassin by Daniel Silva. I read several of his books, and they all have to do with espionage and Israel. This one, along with The Confessor and A Death in Vienna all had to do with implications of the Holocaust. This one was the most engrossing and interesting to me.
3. The Rule of Four by Ian Caldwell and Dustin Thomason. Loved this book. It was like The Da Vinci Code, but without all the heresy. It also had reflective elements that reminded me of The Great Gatsby, another all-time favorite.
2. Gone Baby Gone by Dennis Lehane. Yeah, here it is again. The movie was about as good as the book. Actually, there was one major twist in the book that I saw coming a mile away. It ended up being one of those I-know-what-happened-but-I-don't-know-why things. The climax was good enough, though, that it didn't ruin it for me. Really, really powerful and thought-provoking.
1. The Shack by William P. Young. This book has stirred some controversy. I understand why. Still, it was the best fiction book I read all year. It really challenged my thinking and my feeling. I, along with many others, am still processing through some of the things in it, and I am not sure where I will come out. Bottom line, though, it was a very powerful book on pain, and on the truth that God's ways are not our ways. Also, I thought it brought up good points about what it might look like to truly live in mutual deference to those around me. It paints quite a picture.







Had to include this picture from Matt Grubbs. He made this after I blogged about my summer readings. Pretty funny stuff.



Nonfiction Books Read for the First Time
5. Velvet Elvis by Rob Bell. The book brings up some good points about separating our experience in Christianity from the truths of Christianity. I don't mean that he is against experience. It is just that he wants us to get outside of our personal experience and realize that the gospel is bigger than just our experience. I have to admit, though, that sometimes I questions his historical references. They seem a bit shady sometimes.
4. The Pleasures of God by John Piper. This was a good and challenging book about the things in which God takes pleasure. I thought the chapters about God's pleasure in his creation were especially good.
3. Consuming Jesus by Paul Louis Metzger. I just blogged about this one. It is about race and class divisions in the church. Very eye-opening and challenging.
2. Telling the Truth by Frederick Bueckner. This book is about communicating the gospel, and deals with the beauty of the literary nature of the gospel. Bueckner's chapter on the gospel as comedy is one of the top 10 chapters I have ever read in any book. It is just amazing.
1. The Cost of Discipleship by Dieterich Bonhoffer. I had started this a couple times in the last few years, but this Summer I finally read it. It is a truly amazing book from a man who is a true hero in the faith. He deals with, of course, the call of Christ, as well as the church, and the presence of Christ continuing to work in the world today. He made a point about how the writers of the epistles don't refer a lot of Christ's earthly ministry. Instead they talk about his ongoing ministry through the Spirit and the church. This was a pretty paradigm-shifting point to me.
Songs Listened to for the First Time
This will seem very uncreative, but all five of these songs are from the Scrubs soundtrack. They use great music on that show. That said, it is possible that no one will have heard of any of these. But trust me that they are great songs.
5. Blue Eyes by the Cary Brothers. Fun and melodic. Karina frequently sings it to Jack (he has blue eyes.
4. Hold on Hope by Guided by Voices. Great song about, what else, hope.
3. Good Life by Francis Dunnery. Really powerful song. It pulls at my heart strings because it is, admittedly, a song about trying to find happiness without any real belief in design or purpose.
2. Living Life by the Eels. Great song about longing. That is a theme in the Scrubs soundtrack.
1. Closer by Joshua Radin. He also has an amazing song called Winter on the soundtrack. He has an understated style, and I have come to absolutely love him. This song is great. In fact, you can watch the video for the song (it's only 4 minutes long), but clicking on the link below. It will be worth it. Great song.
http://youtube.com/watch?v=06D_EFNGmOQ

Well, I can only hope that this most might help someone, just one person, to find a great movie, book, or song.

Sunday, December 09, 2007

My Potty Training

Hi, I'm Matt. This is my journal from my focused potty training over the last couple of days. I'm a little behind on potty training because my mom had my brother in her tummy, and now she has to feed him all the time. My dad took some time off work to hang out at home, and to help me go on the potty.
THURSDAY
8:00am: Dad wakes me up and talks me into coming to sit on the potty. I didn't really want to, but I eventually said okay. Dad set me up with breakfast and let me watch stuff on his computer. He said that I was not going to get off the potty until I went peepee or poopoo.
8:30am: I started watching Veggietales' Lord of the Beans. I also ate some breakfast.
9:10am: Still nothing. Started watching Veggietales' Minesota Cuke on dad's computer.
9:30am: Dad promised to make me blueberry muffins if I went on the potty.
9:50am: Started watching Wallace the Grownup (Wallace and Gromit) on dad's computer.
11:10am: Right after beginning to watch Elmo's World, I went peepee a little bit. It mostly trickled down on the floor. We celebrated, my dad put some underwear on me, and we went into the kitchen.
11:12am: I peed all over my chair and on the floor under my chair. It was obvious that I still needed to go, so dad took me back to the potty. I was really, really unhappy. He actually had to hold me down on the potty while I thrashed and screamed. I was a bit scared.
11:18am: I finally couldn't hold the pee in any longer. I went. I had so much pee in me that it went all over the floor, even though I was sitting on the toilet. And then I went more. And more. By the time I was done half the bathroom floor was covered with my pee. It got on my socks, dad's pants, the wall, and pretty much everything else. My dad said that he had no idea someone my size could have that much pee instead of them. Mom brought in a big beach towel and then she mopped the floor. I put on some more underwear and then went back to the kitchen. I sat and watched Elmo's World on Dad's computer.
12:35pm: I was complaining and uncomfortable, so dad took me back to the potty. This time I went, and it all went in the toilet. Woohoo!
1:45pm: I took a nap. My dad put me in a pull-up and after about 3 minutes I had pooped in it. He let me have a new one.
4:15pm: I got up from my nap.
4:30pm: I said that I needed to go, so dad took me to the toilet. This time I peed a lot in the toilet. We hugged and celebrated. It was a big accomplishment.
5:45pm: I peed again in the toilet!
7:00pm: My mommy's friends came over to see Jack and give her presents. I played with them and had a lot of fun. I mostly stayed in the kitchen with my dad, though. We brought a lot of toys into the kitchen, including my basketball hoop. Since I was wearing just a shirt and my underwear, dad said that I looked like a basketball player from the '70s. Whatever that means.
7:40pm: I went peepee again!
8:00pm: I watched a little bit of Survivor with dad.
8:45pm: I went to bed, wearing a pull-up.
Friday
8:00: Dad woke me up and we went straight to the toilet. After about 20 minutes, I peed successfully in the toilet. The 20 minutes was a big improvement, considering the fact that it took me over three hours Thursday morning.
9:10am: I peed again in the toilet. I am really getting the hang of this.
10:30am: I peed in the kitchen. It got all over my puzzles.
11:15am: I peed a little on the toilet, and then peed the rest in the bathroom.
12:30pm: I peed again in the potty. I have been doing so well that my mom and dad let me eat a blueberry muffin while sitting on the potty. They're so nice.
1:20pm: Did it again!
1:45pm: Napped in a pull-up. Once again I pooped as soon as that thing got on me. Eventually I will do that on the potty.
5:30pm: I went over to spend the night at Gramm's house, so my mom and dad could go to a Bible study. The next morning, I peed on the potty three times at Gramm's house. That was great! Since then I have not peed anywhere but on the potty. It gets easier every time!
Finally, here I am celebrating my victories.
video

Friday, December 07, 2007

Ami McNay Joins the Jury

Well, sis, sorry that Ethan got voted out. He was such a nice guy. Shy, unassuming, likeable, athletic. He was a little bit strategically challenged, but he is clearly the kind of guy you want your daughter to marry. He may not be a great Survivor player, but there is more to life than that.
Okay, okay, I know that you didn't choose Erik just because he looks like Ethan (winner of Survivor Africa, and Ami's favorite Survivor contestant ever). But my case is that they are both shy, athletic, considerate guys with curly hair. Come on, what was I supposed to think. And the fact is, if Erik had been in a majority alliance he, like Ethan, would have had a good chance to go the whole way without ever getting a vote. But, as it is, he was in the minority and he had to be taken out in 6th place. Nothing to be ashamed of there.
By the way, whew! I was afraid for my boy Todd. And speaking of Todd, I think Erik lost some points by publicly questioning the veracity of Todd's conversation about his sister who had a miscarriage. It is one thing to think about that, but it is quite another to publicly challenge it. I thought it was kind of lame. Not as lame as how Courtney played it up, though.
Now is that point in Survivor when you have the players who are good and the players who you like. Erik was one that you like, and so is Denise. I am finding myself wanting to pull for her. She is just so cool.
Amanda is turning on Todd next week. But obviously Todd finds out. Todd Vs. Amanda. Should be good. It will probably come down to Denise again. Hope she sticks with my boy. Either that or Todd has to win immunity.
P.G. is a fighter! Man, good for her. I just think she has been so mean, though, that she would have a hard time winning even if she got to the end (unless she was up against Courtney).
Ah, Courtney. Just nothing profitable to say. Nothing strategically.
So, we're down to five, and I just wanted to mention that the Final Five are:
Dan Stump (P.G. and Courtney, also known as "the field"; Dan didn't get a pick in, so he got the four remaining players, two of whom are still in it).
Andrea Moffat: Amanda (who Andrea picked 9th, after such picks as Aaron, Dave, and JR).
Karina Franklin (Denise, who Karina picked as the last individual pick before Stump picked up "the field").
Me (Todd, of course, who I picked Fourth, after James, Erik, and JR).
All that to say that most of the people still in it were not the hot picks at the beginning. Good job to all.
Chances:
1. P.G.: Now is a real possibility. If she makes it to the end, which will probably take at least one more immunity win, she may pull it off. She's a fighter.
2. Denise: Definitely could win. She is the ultimate underdog.
3. Amanda: Needs to oust Todd next week. If she does, then she is the ultimate strategic player in this season.
4. Todd: Needs to oust Amanda next week. If he does, then he is the ultimate strategic player in this season.
5. Courtney: No chance. Sorry.

Wednesday, December 05, 2007

I've Always Wanted to Fly

I am not normally into the whole Extreme Sports Scene, but this took my breath away. It is worth a look.

http://www.biertijd.com/mediaplayer/?itemid=4262

Monday, December 03, 2007

My Best Friend

When I left home for The Master's College at the age of 18, I was leaving behind a group of friends that I had grown incredibly close to. In fact, I am still close friends with that same group from high school. That said, I expected my college experience to consist of going off to school, enjoying some great classes, and then returning home to my friends. It's not that I didn't think I would make new friends, it's just that I didn't see any possibility of anyone being able to be as close to me as my friends from home.
About half-way through my Freshmen year at Master's I met Dave McAllister. He was a year ahead of me and he lived in a different dorm. We had Old Testament Survey together, and we sat together in the front row of Dr. Varner's class each Thursday night.
Throughout that year we became close enough friends that we decided to room together when we both went to Israel in the Fall of 1997. We grew together a lot during that semester, even though sometimes we really grated against each other. We came out of that year really being soul mates (in a totally heterosexual way). And I mean that. Our hearts have been knit together in a special way that makes me think of David and Jonathan in 1 Samuel.
Some of my great college memories with Dave are:
1. Arguing about what music is okay for Christians to listen to. Our most memorable argument revolved around comparing The Dave Matthews Band to White Zombie. We argued about it in public too. I think people in The Master's lounge were kind of freaked out.
2. Listening to music in Dave's room. Maybe we argued about music because we both loved it so much. Dave introduced me to Matchbox 20, Everclear, and a bunch of other bands. I pointed him toward Toad the Wet Sprocket. In fact, the first picture of this post is Dave and I at the Toad concert last August.
3. Eating McFlurrys while sharing our burdens. We used to go and get McFlurrys from McDonalds and then sit in Dave's car and talk. We would challenge each other, cry together, bear our souls, and share out struggles. They were great times of rich fellowship together.
Some of my great post-college memories with Dave are:
1. Being in each other's weddings. The picture on the left is from Dave and Kelly's wedding last December. I was honored to be one of Dave's groomsmen, just as he was one of mine at my wedding.
2. Meeting up to go see movies. Dave lives in Mt. Vernon, Washington. Last month we met up in Olympia so that we could see Gone Baby Gone. It was a heavy, powerful, amazing movie and we both knew that we wanted to watch it with each other. This has been the case with several memorable movies.
3. Watching Survivor together. Not really, we just text the whole time we are both watching. Fun stuff. Sorry about James. Don't worry, I think my boy Todd is next.
4. Going to concerts. I already mentioned Toad, but we also went to see U2 and Counting Crows last year.
Beyond all these memories, though, the richness of the friendship is that we both knew each other. We have seen the best and the worst in each other and our friendship has remained strong. Dave has always looked for the best in me, and has challenged me when I have been off base. He has been a great example to me of someone who truly embraces the profundity of each human being. He pursues people and desires to know them. I deeply admire this about Dave.
Well, I wanted to post some pictures from our college days, but I will have to find some and scan them. Maybe there will be a sequel to this so that I can post some fun pics. But I didn't want to wait to post this.
Dave, thanks for being my best friend for the past ten years. I love you, bro.
The rest of you, thanks for reading.