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Gone With The Wind: A Movie Review (part 2) April 30, 2006

Posted by fajita in Movie Reviews.
10 comments

I had heard from so many people over the course of my life about how "Gone With The Wind" was such a classic. A must-see when it comes to cinema history. I heard stories about how mothers named their daughters "Scarlet" after the movie came out. I had heard it's an epic drama with historic value and meaning.

Well it's not. It's a terrible movie.

No lie, 4 times during the grueling 4 hour marathon of crap, I thought to myself, Anchorman is a much better movie. And I thought Ron Burgandy was a total loser.

I can overlook melodramatic acting. I can bypass special effects that are not 21st century material. I can even wink at a story that does not flow well. What I cannot tolerate is committing 4 hours to a "great film" without any sense of redemption whatsoever at the end. At least I laughed three times during "Anchorman." If you don't believe Anchorman is a better movie than Gone With The Wind, I will fight you.

I could make it through "Ray," because of redemption. I could "Walk the Line" with Johnny Cash because of redemption. But at the end of "Gone With The Wind," I just wanted to strangle Scarlet O'hara. Star Wars is great because of redemption, not the acting.

Here is the redeeming lesson I learned from "Gone With The Wind:" Be a selfish, lying, cheating, loser who is so completely self-absorbed so that when even creeps like Rhett Butler can't stand you anymore, you can go back to your house and be an idiot all by yourself – thinking the world is not right because it doesn't orbit your sorry little life. For all the flack I hear about teenagers these days being too into themselves and selfish and so forth, Scarlet gives proof that it is all about perspective. Apparently people do not need MTV, Ipods, blogs, internet, and video games to turn out rotton.     

Rant comeplete.

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Gone With The Wind: A Movie Review (part 1) April 29, 2006

Posted by fajita in Movie Reviews.
2 comments

It sucked.

The Month In Grief April 28, 2006

Posted by fajita in family.
2 comments

One month ago today, my father passed away on a hospital bed in Burnsville, Minnesota. I watched the life evaporate out from his body. I watched the machines which were recording his vital signs slow…slow..slow…stop recording. I kissed his forehead as the last little bits of life left him, and told him I loved him. Since then I have wondered what he is doing, what Heaven is like, what God is like, what the badly needed upgrade on his body is like. I've wept, but not as much as I thought I would. I've had some anxiety problems, but more than I had anticipated. Time has moved faster than I have chosen it to. Thoughts come to me at some of the least opportune times. I'm having a hard time finding both the space in my life and the willingness to talk about my father as much as I need to – and I intent to correct that. Grief slows down a person's life. At minimum, it is one more thing to do. But it's a whole lot more than that. It is a new way of life. It's not a thing you get off your plate with a bunch of hard work, no, it's more like being issued a new plate with a whole new shape – a shape that needs quite a bit of getting used to. I've been fatigued, achy, tired, sad, disoriented, lacking in concentration, full of static energy, having weird dreams, and coming to the realization over and over that my father is dead. Now, I am not having all of these responses all at once. If I begin to, pass the xanax. What has helped me more than anything is the permission for anything to happen for as long os it needs to. So, although most of these "symptoms" were expected, some were not. But there was room for the ones that were not expected. I have also been reading the Bible with a need for comfort. And I am getting it. There is hope in death. I am finding that my belief in a new life, a resurrection, a transcendence of this life is either going to become stronger or it is going to go away. At this point, it is gaining in momentum. This is good. The sun rises. I have confidence in a risen sun. Every sunrise is a reminder that the Son of God is risen. If he can do it, then so can we – with a little help, of course. I am taking the day off of work because that is what I want to do – it is what I need to do. I am going into the hills of Arkansas and taking pictures. Peace, shalom, selah.   

Missing Links April 27, 2006

Posted by fajita in Blog Community, Blogging.
16 comments

Dear readers,

I was going to link to everyone who linked to me on my old blog. However, I thought that perhaps not everyone wanted to be linked to. So, here's your chance to boldly say, "Link me now or lose me forever."

Come on, ask me, tell me, make me link to you. All you gotta do is ask. If you aren't willing to do that for a link, then you don't want it baby!

Liquid Creed April 27, 2006

Posted by fajita in emerging church/emergent, Philosophy/Religion.
4 comments

I promised a few days ago that I would have a draft of a personal creed or faith statement on the blog the next day. Well, it's the next day about three times since then – so here it is.

I want your critique and comment. Challenge this. Make it better. THis is reall yimportant to me because I ahve spent a lot of time unleanring what I used to believe and I need to invest some thought into renewing what I do believe.

God is the infinite power in and beyond the universe, which is an ongoing creative process of love and generosity. As an artist can be known in part by his or her art, God can be known in part by the universe.

Jesus is God in a real man, a son. Unique in all history, Jesus fulfilled many promises made in ancient Jewish scripture. He showed that the Kingdom of God was about love, not religious or political power. He was killed by religious and poitical leaders, but proved love is stronger than death by miraculously defying death in a bodily resurrection. He was the final sacrifice for all of the mistakes and evil in the universe at any period in time and time to come. That sacrifice freed all creation to either choose or refuse God for present and eternity.

Holy Spirit is God's mystical and mysterious presence in all who are willing to be intimate with God. This Holy Spirit is present in the universe and beyond it and is accessible to humans. This Holy Spirit is an untamed, unpredictable, and wild force who is determined to do good through natural and supernatural means.

The Trinity is God expressed in a Father, a son, and this Holy Spirit.

The Bible is a multi-genred story describing God's relationship to people and the universe. It was written by the hands of people, refined through tradition – guided by God's benevolent relationships with these people. It is influential and authoritative in that no other writing or word can replace it. It is some of the story of God, but not all of it. That story presently continues in the lives of people and in the universe.

The Church is a gathering of people seeking deeper intimacy with God.   

A Little Something April 27, 2006

Posted by fajita in A Little Something.
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Wade Hodges blogs about blogging.

Johnny Baker reports on the future of the word, "evangelical," and Tall Skinny Kiwi resists.

OK, now evangelism is emerging.

DJ Chuang wants you to know his impression of IE7.

And finally, for you looking for a little something in Malasia, Romanopoly.

What Makes You Beautiful? April 26, 2006

Posted by fajita in Family Science, Philosophy/Religion, Sex, Teens.
2 comments

I believe the lovely and talented Scarlet Johanson was recently deemed the world's sexiest woman. She has a pretty smile and a nice figure. Her acting ability is improving, but is not award winning. There is something likeable about her public personality and she carries with her (in some of the roles she's played) a little bit of the certain kind of feminine helplessness that makes men feel like they need to rescue her.

But is she a beautiful woman? I really don't know. You probably don't know either. You know where I am going with this. A woman's beauty is not measured by sex appeal. Sex appeal, even with continued surgeries, eventually falls apart. Usually it is cast away long before it falls apart becuase Hollywood and magazine publishers can always build a sexier woman.

The question of what makes a woman beautiful is important for most women, but I think it is particularly important for teenager girls. It's so easy for teenage girls to get beautiful and sexy confused. I would wager that most teenage girls do not feel beautiful because they don't compare to magazine covers and music videos in the sexy department.

When they don't match up, they usually feel worth less than they really are. Then there are two negative ways that they respond to the self-loathing.

1. Get sexy and learn seduction.

2. Self-destruct.

Neither of these is good. What needs to happen for teenage girls is a new (old) vision of beauty. They need to be exposed to beautiful women who make a difference. Mother Teresa was a beautiful woman. A teenage girl's compassion needs to be labeled beautiful more than it needs to be labeled good. What a teenage girl needs is a way to be beautiful without it requiring sex appeal.

Go ahead, ask a teenage girl what makes her beautiful and watch her squirm. She doesn't know the answer. She knows it's not supposed to be sexual, but at the same time she's going to have a hard time thinking of anything else.

Parents, youth workers, ministers, and anyone working with teenage girls, make them feel beautiful by finding out who that girl is and call it beautiful.

Emerging in unusual places April 25, 2006

Posted by fajita in Christianity, emerging church/emergent, Uncategorized.
1 comment so far

Mark Driscoll talks about a new kind of Christian.

A Little Something April 25, 2006

Posted by fajita in A Little Something, Christianity, emerging church/emergent.
5 comments

The Kiwi who claims to be both tall and skinny offers a great little something on "emerging church " and "emergent" both here and here.

Larry James shares a little something on incomes.

Adam Cleaveland is selling his books here.

And, another little something on the emerging church.

I'm paying this much for gas where I live. What are you paying where you live?

Mideast nuclear arms race?

Finally, is this where emergin church worship is going?

Your Creed April 24, 2006

Posted by fajita in Christianity, emerging church/emergent, Philosophy/Religion.
1 comment so far

Does anyone out there have a personal creed or statement of faith? Have you adopted an existing one?

If so, would you share it?

I am working on one. I'll share a draft of it tomorrow.