it's hard not to like this game


Barbara Grace Murphy

I attended a baptism on Sunday. It was at a Lutheran church. The sermon featured Mark 5:22-43. The pastor had some interesting insights on it. For example, there is a theme of non-traditional Christian thought in the woman believing that touching that which is holy will make her holy. It is also present in the fact that Mark records the Aramaic that Jesus speaks when He heals the girl. The power of Christ is not in the hem of His garment or in the words He spoke. But Jesus doesn't really seem to care. He is more concerned with healing and whatnot to focus on correcting how they practice their religion. It was very refreshing to hear that message in a church.

Afterward, Allison and I went to the STL Science Center. I love the science center... like a lot. We watched Wild Ocean which is about the Wild Coast of South Africa. It was such a joy to see rondovals again. Watching the Omnimax and then coming home and seeing the stars just now reminded me of the absolute wonder I felt as I looked to the sky and saw no constellations that I recognized. Doing some research I found Orion. But in the Southern Hemisphere, Orion is upside-down. It may not seem like a big deal, but it completely floored me at the time.


Laura Dun Got Hitched!

So, Laura is now married. Now there is only Laura Pullen. That's weird. The wedding was very nice and very dry. Venues were tasteful and enjoyable. The music was very nice... very Laura. : ) Rachel sang. It was good to hear her sing again. She also gave a speech that was well done.

I had a lot of fun sitting with Cat, David, Lucy and some other people. Mike and Jeff were no shows. They had moving stuff to take care of.

It used to feel strange to be not married. I think that was because I had been preparing myself for it for so long. Now there isn't really any kind of feeling about it at all.

Luckily no one was able to tell that I had a head injury. It's healing quite well. The knot is much smaller than it was at the wedding. Still no real pain from the injury and no headaches. I'm quite lucky in that regard.


all w's

my retroactive withdrawal was approved. I now have a chance.


It's hot an muggy. I would just like to acknowledge that I've noticed.

Father's Day coming up, I got dad something cool. I hope he can use it.


w00t, shirts!

http://shirt.woot.com/Friends.aspx?k=8681 -- clever and cute
http://shirt.woot.com/Friends.aspx?k=8207 -- perfect for your next star party
http://shirt.woot.com/Friends.aspx?k=8978 -- someday we'll have to explain this to our kids


Work Area Leader. I just filled out a self-nomination form... We'll see if this becomes the initial debacle that the load coach program was....


Yay for texting my parents via email to give them directions to where I am.

Boo for my phone dying every couple of days.


Some Thought

This life is a hospital where every patient is possessed with the desire to change beds; one man would like to
suffer in front of the stove, and another believes that he would recover his health beside the window.
It always seems to me that I should feel well in the place where I am not -baudelaire

I read that somewhere. It seems so right, but there's something just off about it. I can't put my finger on it, but I don't feel like I'm never satisfied. It's more like I'm not yet satisfied. While that might be only a hair's breadth difference, it feels very important. Perhaps it's that I haven't given up yet. I know that I will be there someday. It isn't a goal that is always far away; I am not chasing the horizon. I am getting better. It would crush me to think that I might never recover. I don't want to think of this human affliction as incurable and only tolerable. Maybe my only difference is my defiant spirit. O! What a difference it is!


It doesn't feel like depression, but I feel like I'm in a low spot. Low on motivation I suppose.

There's an old thought experiment that goes like this: Supposing money was not an object, and you could do anything you wanted, what would you do? If you were retired, and comfortably living off of an investment, how would you spend your time? The answer is usually something like "pursue hobby X" or "travel to location Y" or even "live out vague, sometimes altruistic, dream Z." Then the experimenter twists it all to say, "then why aren't you doing those things now?"

It's related to the advice, "find a need, and fill it." Find your own need, and fill it. Thus you are happy. Then you have a goal. You want to be a world traveler? Why not go be a world traveler then?

Inspirational? Sometimes. Original? Hardly. Useful? Dubious.

It goes with pithy sayings like: "Just Do It," "Grab life by the horns," "Carpe Diem," "Live each day as if it is your last," and so on.

But they all seem out of touch with reality. One's potential in general is not strictly identical to one's potential at the moment. They offer the motivational energy of a refined sugar, quick kick but short ride with a crash at the end.

My point? No point, really. Just some bitching.


What's wrong with the credit industry?

They say it's a credit crunch that we're in... at least I think I heard someone say that... somewhere. However, the problem isn't that credit card companies don't trust consumers or that consumers don't trust the market. It isn't about failures of automakers, banks, or risky markets (sub-prime, I'm talking to you). It is that credit card companies have been fleecing customers for far too long and have finally weakened the market to such a degree that now everyone is in trouble, who isn't careful.

Take this example I got in the mail today:

It's from First Premier Bank. Never heard of them? Neither had I.

They say:
Dear Stephen Murphy,

Apply for your Platinum MasterCard card from First PREMIER Bank. Just use Confirmation #: 142 739 *** *** and visit www.60SecondPremier.com to get your credit response in 60 seconds.

Because we know that bad things happen to good people, First PREMIER Bank had created this card for those with less-than-perfect credit. So even if you've been turned down in the past, don't let that stop you.

Use your card anywhere MasterCard cards are accepted. And if you ever have questions, account access by phone is available 24/7. Plus, you will receive a credit to your account of 5% on all on-time payments for 12 months.

Wow, what a great deal! They even offer 9.9% APR on all purchases. They claim that this is one of the lowest rates available. Hmm, let's see what the initial disclosure says... 9.9% APR on purchases... goes up to 19.9% if I don't pay on time... fees include: $29 Account Set Up Fee, $95 Program Fee, $48 Annual Fee, $84 Monthly Servicing Fee (billed monthly), $25 fee every time they increase your credit limit, $3.95 Internet Access Fee... that sounds like a lot. The break down is this:

If you are approved, you get a minimum of $250 credit limit. Minus the fees put on the card before you use it... that's $71 dollars left. If you check your account online that's $67.05 of your $250 left... so they just spent $182.95 just to have the card. wow. That's 73% of your credit line used to get the card.

What's wrong with this picture? Who is this card marketed toward again? People with "less-than-perfect credit." They are the ones that need to be using up 73% of their available unsecured credit limit. This card would actually hurt their credit score, just by owning the card.

What a joke. It's hard to see how this kind of marketing is legal.

(btw, what does "first premier" mean? Can there be a second premier?)


Long Distance Call -- Phoenix

Where to go I had no idea
26.10 was the price to pay
A messed up kid with no ideals at all
I thought those 26.10 I shouldn't give'em away

I remember this young guy died and I took his part
He got far too many stitches on his pretty face
Long time to see but I always thought us two would be serious
I was looking around town, thinking the same as you.

I'm far gone but your long distance call
And your capital letters keep me asking for more

It's never been like that
It's never been like that

I'm far gone but your long distance call
And your capital letters keep me asking for more

Where to go I had no idea about it
Most of the people do, they're only doing just fine
I don't wanna stay in place no more, see
Ain't doing well well well, I am only doing just fine

long time no see, long time no say
Got little to tell, I don't say much but I might
Something always told me us two would be serious
I am looking around town, thinking the same as you

I'm far gone but your long distance call
And your capital letters keep me asking for more

It's never been like that
It's never been like that

I'm far gone but your long distance call
And your capital letters keep me asking for more

Long time no see... Long time no say...


Mike and Sara's Wedding

I've been gone for a while. I took a week off from work and inadvertently took a week off from the internet.

Mike and Sara's wedding was awesome. Decorations: awesome. Food: awesome. Drinks: awesome. People: awesome. Venue: awesome. Conversations: awesome. Weather: awesome. Am I missing anything? Well, just assume it was awesome as well.

The past week as given me a lot to think about and a lot of that will come out here. I have the posts future dated, so they should just pour out over the next week or so.