Saturday, March 29, 2008

MLB.tv/Sox and Dodgers

I realize it's still spring training, but if the new MLB.tv settings are the same once the regular season starts, then I've been took! The "full screen" is only about half screen --which is annoying enough, but it's even more annoying since I bought a new tv primarily to be able to watch MLB.tv games on my tv. There is a 1.2M option, but the Sox game is only available in 400K. MLB Mosaic doesn't become available until Monday -- a day after the start of the regular season. I'm hoping the Mosaic settings will be better. The settings were different and better last night before they "upgraded" the settings. I'm also a bit frustrated by the fact that this game has been hyped for weeks, but it's not airing on any tv station other than NESN. I can't watch my computer on my tv in HD!

On the up-side, it's good to hear Don and Jerry even if I have to squint to see them. I'm still not used to seeing Joe Torre in a Dodgers uni. This game is in the LA Stadium where the Dodgers played when they first came to LA. There are more than 100K people here. USC football games are played here now. LA has fixed it up as a baseball field for tonight. There is a 60 foot fence in the left field. The left field wall here is MUCH closer than even the Green Monster! The Dodgers are not even using a left fielder; they are using five people in the infield. It looks like a shift is on with an extra man on third. The camera angles are beyond makeshift and bizarre. The pitch shots are coming from behind the pitcher, so it's impossible to call balls and strikes. I'm glad I didn't decide to try to score this game! It's so bizarre that Don and Jerry can't even call balls and strikes! The cameras make it look like you're actually sitting in the outfield; it's as if there is no zoom on these things. Wally keeps asking to borrow my glasses! One positive thing about tonight's MLB.tv airing is that it is showing NESN's commercials instead of blacking them out with a miserable MLB ad with elevator music in the background. I'm looking forward to my favorite New England commercials from places like: Foxwoods, Bob's Discount Furniture, W.B. Mason, Dunkin Donuts, Sullivan Tires, Charlie Moore --the mad fisherman, and bad acting by various sox players pushing whichever store has paid them (or Sox Appeal, which had the most comical sox appearances).
Have I mentioned this year how much I love Tim Wakefield?! Yea, even if he did just give up a hit and committed an error after just one pitched ball. Our SS is fielding left field. Andruw Jones has made more plays at second tonight than the second baseman!
I've seriously missed Don and Jerry making fun of themselves or the various things that occur in the ballgame. I've missed the wheezing laughter that they often break out into but are trying to be silent and not laugh hysterically into the microphone. My favorite quote from the game is:
Don: Some people say not to let [the green monster mess with your swing
by tempting you to swing for the fences] in Fenway Park. But even Fenway
Park isn't this close.
Jerry: Even the Little League Park isn't this close!
This is the first road game in years where Sox fans are actually outnumbered by the home team's fans. It actually feels like a road game! In these years of bandwagon jumpers, it's kinda nice.
Just when a late-spring training game begins to feel like a real game (two days before the opening night, real unis instead of spring unis, full effort by the players), the starters are taken out one by one so that by the middle of the 5th inning the team has changed to a mixture of single A and double A players that only ring a bell as being early round picks a year or two ago.

One random Sox fact that I learned this weekend: Closer Jonathan Papelbon graduated from Mississippi State University (no new news there, but...) and utility player Bobby Keilty played for Ole Miss. How odd is it that a team from Boston has two Mississippi alums from the two major colleges (sorry USM fans...you'll always have Favre).

Thursday, March 27, 2008

Class Today

This morning in my 9:30 class, most of my students walked in right at 9:30. I began class by handing out their rough drafts for the annotated bibliography that they are working on. I was finishing up handing out drafts when Adam, on of the students, walked in late. I handed him his draft, and asked the class if they had questions about any comments I've made. A girl on the left hand side of the room raised her hand first, so I went straight there. I then saw several hands go up on the other side of the room, and I planned on going there after answering the first question. Then one of the students who had his hand raised got up and walked to where I was helping the other student. He said, "Uh, I think Adam's hurt. He's in pain." So, I jumped over to that side of the room to check on Adam, and he told me his knee cap had popped out of place. Obviously my first thought was, "I don't know what to do!" Our classroom is two blocks down the street from the hospital, but he couldn't walk. I tried calling the school health clinic (that for some bizarre reason moved off campus), but nobody answered. The students asked me to call the police, but I kept telling them the police would walk in pretending they knew what they were doing and then just stand there looking like idiots. Finally I called 911. About 20 minutes later the paramedics showed up to my class. The paramedics were two women about my size. They forced Adam to stand up and get on the gurney, they got him settled and rolled him out. The hospital is so close that they seriously could have just wheeled him down the street. Needless to say, we got very little school work done. I've had a lot of things happen in class before, but I've never had a student taken out by 911! One of my students took a picture, so you can totally see I'm not lying.

Thursday, March 20, 2008

I miss my boys!

Momma babysat Charlie yesterday, and they were playing with the globe. Charlie and Lauren went to Jackson for several days last week, so Momma was showing Charlie where New Albany was on the globe and where Jackson is (Jackson has a star!). Charlie loved it! Then he asked, "Where's Libby live?" Momma pointed out Atlanta and the purple state of Georgia. Before Momma even realized what was happening, Charlie leaned down and kissed Atlanta!
It's the little things like this that make me sad I live far away from them.

Saturday, March 15, 2008

Storms

There are few days of the year that I dread and hate more than the 15th of March. Shakespeare and Julius Caesar have historically created a dark atmosphere for the day. I usually spend the day trying to stay busy and to not stop to think; it never works. However, the last 24 hours have reminded me of something.

Last night Atlanta was hit by a tornado that caused a lot of damaged, left hundreds homeless and sent several to the hospital. I was home, and the rain and thunder outside my apartment was louder than any I've ever heard. While these thunderstorms ravaged the city, I sat in my apartment half fascinated and scared out of my mind. This morning, the storms still raged outside. At one point in the day, I was awakened by the tornado siren blaring, and I scurried for shelter. After ten minutes, the storm had moved on. Less than an hour later, the sun was shining. I'm not talking about a non-rain situation...the sun was actually shining brightly!

It reminded me of storms we face in life. Whether we're holed up in the innermost bathroom with a candle or if we're buried in our covers, storms are still scary. When the wind blows and the lightening strikes, we try to find safety. But, what is inevitable is that the storm will end. The sun will come out! When we come out of our shelter, we walk among the rubble and assess the impact of the storm, and then we begin to pick up the pieces and go on with life. The impact of the storm remains with us forever, but slowly it becomes less consuming. We see God's hand more clearly in the storm. We may not be able to see 2 inches in front of us or be able to stand up to the winds and think life is over, but then God makes himself visable. And when the storm has passed, the sun comes out, and through the sunshine we're reminded of God's grace, comfort and protection. No, storms aren't fun, but we can take comfort in the fact that the sun will shine again.

Songs for JD: Day 11

This is the last day of the songs for JD posts. This is an old song that I had never heard of until I was with the Ervins at a Better Than Ezra concert. Both Matt and I went home and downloaded the song. Here's The The's "Love is Stronger Than Death"


Lovelovelove
Lovelovelove
Me & my friend were walking
In the cold light of mourning.
Tears may blind the eyes but the soul is not deceived
In this world even winter aint what it seems.
Here come the blue skies here comes springtime.
When the rivers run high & the tears run dry.
When everything that dies.
Shall rise.
Lovelovelove is stronger than death.
Lovelovelove is stronger than death.
In our lives we hunger for those we cannot touch.
All the thoughts unuttered & all the feelings unexpressed
Play upon our hearts like the mist upon our breath.
But, awoken by grief, our spirits speak
How could you believe that the life within the seed
That grew arms that reached
And a heart that beat.
And lips that smiled
And eyes that cried.
Could ever die?
Here come the blue skies here comes springtime.
When the rivers run high & the tears run dry.
When everything that dies.
Shall rise.
Lovelovelove is stronger than death.
Lovelovelove is stronger than death.
Shall rise. shall rise.
Shall rise. shall rise.

Friday, March 14, 2008

Songs for JD: Day 10

This is an old song that became a favorite of mine in high school. It's not necessarily a "JD song," but I think it's a song he would agree with. We often take the future for granted, and I think JD's death showed us all how we can't bank on tomorrow. I can think of few people who lived their lives fuller than Jonathan did. He knew that each day was the day to live. Here is Van Morrison's These are the days:


These are the days of the endless summer
These are the days, the time is now
There is no past, theres only future
Theres only here, theres only now
Oh your smiling face, your gracious presence
The fires of spring are kindling bright
Oh the radiant heart and the song of glory
Crying freedom in the night
These are the days by the sparkling river
His timely grace and our treasured find
This is the love of the one magician
Turned the water into wine
These are days of the endless dancing and the
Long walks on the summer night
These are the days of the true romancing
When Im holding you oh, so tight
These are the days by the sparkling river
His timely grace and our treasured find
This is the love of the one great magician
Turned water into wine
These are the days now that we must savour
And we must enjoy as we can
These are the days that will last forever
Youve got to hold them in your heart.

Thursday, March 13, 2008

Songs for JD: Day 9

Lately my favorite album is Raising Sand. The last song on the album always brings JD to mind. Here's "Your Long Journey" from the album by Robert Plant and Alison Krauss.


Your Long Journey
God's given us years of happiness here
Now we must part
And as the angels come and call for you
The pains of grief tug at my heart
Oh my darling
My darling
My heart breaks as you take your long journey
Oh the days will be empty
The nights so long without you my love
And when god calls for you I'm left alone
But we will meet in heaven above
Oh my darling
My darling
My heart breaks as you take your long journey
Fond memories I'll keep of happy ways
That on earth we trod
And when I come we will walk hand in hand
As one in heaven in the family of god
Oh my darling
My darling
My heart breaks as you take your long journey

Wednesday, March 12, 2008

Today I was driving back from Tuscaloosa, and it was a gorgeous day! I had the sunroof back and my sunglasses on. As I was driving, U2's "Beautiful Day" came on. There is no way to do a list like this without U2 showing up. Jonathan loved them and thought Bono was the coolest person on the planet. So, here's a little U2


"Beautiful Day"
The heart is a bloom
Shoots up through the stony ground
There's no room
No space to rent in this town
You're out of luck
And the reason that you had to care
The traffic is stuck
And you're not moving anywhere
You thought you'd found a friend
To take you out of this place
Someone you could lend a hand
In return for grace
It's a beautiful day
Sky falls, you feel like
It's a beautiful day
Don't let it get away
You're on the road
But you've got no destination
You're in the mud
In the maze of her imagination
You love this town
Even if that doesn't ring true
You've been all over
And it's been all over you
It's a beautiful day
Don't let it get away
It's a beautiful day
Touch me
Take me to that other place
Teach me
I know I'm not a hopeless case
See the world in green and blue
See China right in front of you
See the canyons broken by cloud
See the tuna fleets clearing the sea out
See the Bedouin fires at night
See the oil fields at first light
And see the bird with a leaf in her mouth
After the flood all the colors came out
It was a beautiful day
Don't let it get away
Beautiful day
Touch me
Take me to that other place
Reach me
I know I'm not a hopeless case
What you don't have you don't need it now
What you don't know you can feel it somehow
What you don't have you don't need it now
Don't need it now
Was a beautiful day

Tuesday, March 11, 2008

Songs for JD: Day 8

"Praise be to the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, the Father of compassion and the God of all comfort" II Cor. 1:3
Hold Me Jesus
Well, sometimes my life
Just don't make sense at all
When the mountains look so big
And my faith just seems so small

CHORUS: So hold me Jesus, 'cause I'm shaking like a leaf
You have been King of my glory
Won't You be my Prince of Peace

And I wake up in the night and feel the dark
It's so hot inside my soul
I swear there must be blisters on my heart

CHORUS
Surrender don't come natural to me
I'd rather fight You for something I don't really want
Than to take what You give that I need
And I've beat my head against so many walls
Now I'm falling down, I'm falling on my knees
And this Salvation Army band Is playing this hymn
And Your grace rings out so deep
It makes my resistance seem so thin

CHORUS
You have been King of my glory Won't You be my Prince of Peace

Monday, March 10, 2008

Songs for JD: Day 7

When O Brother, Where Art Thou? came out, Jonathan was ecstatic. The film quickly became one of his favorites. What was surprising was that the Jonathan who always bashed country music had the bluegrass soundtrack playing in his truck for months. So, here is the hit song from that movie.

I am a Man of Constant Sorrow
I am a man of constant sorrow
I've seen trouble all my day.
I bid farewell to old Kentucky
The place where I was born and raised. (The place where he was born and raised)
For six long years I've been in trouble
No pleasures here on earth I found
For in this world I'm bound to ramble
I have no friends to help me now.
He has no friends to help him now
[chorus]
It's fare thee well my old lover
I never expect to see you again
For I'm bound to ride that northern railroad
Perhaps I'll die upon this train. [chorus] Perhaps he'll die upon this train.
You can bury me in some deep valley
For many years where I may lay
Then you may learn to love another
While I am sleeping in my grave. While he is sleeping in his grave.
[chorus]
Maybe your friends think I'm just a stranger
My face you'll never see no more.
But there is one promise that is given
I'll meet you on God's golden shore. He'll meet you on God's golden shore.
[chorus]

Sunday, March 9, 2008

Songs for JD: Day 6

"He will wipe every tear from their eyes. There will be no more death or mourning or crying or pain, for the old order of things has passed away." Revelation 21:4


In My Life/If We Never Meet Again
There are places I remember
All my life, though some have changed
Some forever and not for better
Some are gone and some remain
All these places have their moments
With people and friends I still can recall
Some are dead and some are living
But in my life, I loved them all

But of all these friends and loved ones
There is no one compares with you
And these memories lose their meaning
When I think of love as something new
Though I know I'll never lose affection
For people and friends that went before
I know I'll often stop and think about them
But in my life I loved you more

Soon we'll come to the end of life's journey
And perhaps we'll never meet anymore
Till we gather in heaven's bright city
Far away on that beautiful shore
If we never meet again this side of heaven
As we struggle through this world and its strife
There's another meeting place somewhere in heaven
By the beautiful river of life
Where the charming roses bloom forever
And separations come no more
If we never meet again this side of heaven
I will meet you on that beautiful shore

Saturday, March 8, 2008

Songs for JD: Day 5

One thing I've heard many times over the past four years is how much our friendships with Jonathan changed our lives. While we appreciated him and loved him, it wasn't until after he was gone that we realized the kind of affect he had made on our lives. This song came out not long after Jonathan died, but it still makes me think of him. I definitely wouldn't be the same person had he not been in my life. His impact on our lives made it even harder to say goodbye to him and move on with life.

"As iron sharpens iron, so one man sharpens another." Proverbs 27:17
Probably Wouldn't Be This Way
Got a date a week from Friday with the preacher's son
Everybody says he's crazy
I'll have to see
I finally moved to Jackson when the summer came
I won't have to pay that boy to rake my leaves
I'm probably going on and on
It seems I'm doing more of that these days
[CHORUS 1:]I probably wouldn't be this way
I probably wouldn't hurt so bad
I never pictured every minute without you in it
Oh You left so fast
Sometimes I see you standing there
Sometimes it's like I'm losing touch
Sometimes I feel that I'm so lucky to have had the chance to love this much
God gave me a moment's grace
'Cause if I'd never seen your face
I probably wouldn't be this way
Mama says that I just shouldn't speak to you
Susan says that I should just move on
You oughta see the way these people look at me
When they see me 'round here talking to this stone
Everybody thinks I've lost my mind
But I just take it day by day
[CHORUS 2:]I probably wouldn't be this way
I probably wouldn't hurt so bad
I never pictured every minute without you in it
Oh You left so fast
Sometimes I see you standing there
Sometimes I feel an angel's touch
Sometimes I feel that I'm so lucky to have had the chance to love this much
God gave me a moment's grace
'Cause if I'd never seen your face
I probably wouldn't be this way
I Probably wouldn't be this way
Got A Date a week from Friday with a preacher's son
Everybody says I'm crazy
Guess I'll have to see

Friday, March 7, 2008

Songs for JD: Day 4

Jonathan's senior year of college, this song was over-played on radios in Jackson. Jonathan would laugh at how any time you got in a vehicle, this song would be on some station of the radio. He would roll down the windows, turn up the radio, and dance and sing. Here's a little Mary J. Blige (who is ironically about to go on tour with Jay Z...another typical JD song reference).

"There is a time for everything and a season for every activity under heaven: [. . .] a time to weep and a time to laugh, a time to mourn and a time to dance." Ecc. 3: 1, 4

"Family Affair"
[Chorus:] Let's get it crunk, we gonna' have fun
Up on in this dancery
We got ya open, now ya floatin'
So you gots to dance for me
Don't need no hateration, holleratin'
In this dancery
Let's get it percolatin', while you're waiting
So just dance for me
Come on everybody get on up
Cause you know we gots to get it crunk
Mary J. is in the spot tonight
As I'mma make it feel alright (Make it feel alright)
Come on baby just party with me
Let loose and set your body free
Leave your situations at the door
So when you step inside jump on the floor
[Chorus]
It's only gonna be about a matter of time
Before you get loose and start loose your mind
Cop you a drink, go head and rock your ice
Cause we celebrating
No More Drama in our life
With a great track pumpin', everybody's jumpin'
Going ahead and twist your back and get your body bumpin'
I told you leave your situations at the door
So grab somebody and get your ass on the dance floor
[Chorus]
We don't need, don't need, no haters
Just try to love one another
We just want y'all have a good time
No more drama in your life
Work real hard to make a dime
If you got beef, your problem, not mine
Leave all that BS outside
We're gonna celebrate all night
Let's have fun, tonight, no fights
Turn the Dre track way up high
Making you dance all night and I
Got some real heat for ya this time
Doesn't matter if you're white or black
Let's get crunk cause Mary's back
[Chorus]

Thursday, March 6, 2008

Songs for JD: Day 3

I spent the day in Jackson today. It was a gorgeous day! It was my spring break, and I spent the day tooling around town meeting friends and running errands. It reminded me of many days in the months before Jonathan moved to California. We would run errands and then stand in the parking lot until we decided what to do with the rest of the day (that is until Wes got off of work and came to play Monopoly). We would go to the movies, the reservoir, or just drive around town thinking of other errands to run. When I think of how limited his time would be, I become more appreciative of and hold dear those lazy days that he spent his time with me. Today, on a day like so many from years ago, I missed Jonathan much more than usual. Today's song is an Indigo Girls song that reminds me of JD for several reasons.

“Let us not love with words or tongue but with actions and in truth.” I John 3:18
"Mystery"
Each time youd pull down the driveway
I wasnt sure when I would see you again
Yours was a twisted blind sided highway
No matter which road you took then
Oh you set up your place in my thoughts
Moved in and made my thinking crowded
Now were out in the back with the barking dogs
My heart the red sun
Your heart the moon clouded
I could go crazy on a night like tonight
When summer's beginning to give up her fight
And every thought's a possibility
And the voices are heard but nothing is seen
Why do you spend this time with me
Maybe an equal mystery
So what is love then is it dictated or chosen(handed down and made by hand)
Does it sing like the hymns of 1000 years
Or is it just pop emotion
And if it ever was there and it left
Does it mean it was never true
And to exist it must elude
Is that why I think these things of you
I could go crazy on a night like tonight
When summer's beginning to give up her fight
And every thought's a possibility
And the voices are heard but nothing is seen
Why do you spend this time with me
May be an equal mystery
But you like the taste of danger
It shines like sugar on your lips
And you like to stand in the line of fire
Just to show you can shoot straight from you hip
There must be a 1,000 things you would die for
I can hardly think of two
But not everything is better spoken aloud
Not when Im talking to you
Oh the pirate gets the ship and the girl tonight
Breaks a bottle to christen her
Basking in the exploits of her thief
Shes a very good listener
Maybe thats all that we need
Is to meet in the middle of impossibility
Were standing at opposite poles
Equal partners in a mystery
Were standing at opposite poles
Equal partners in a mystery

Wednesday, March 5, 2008

Songs for JD: Day 2

In college, Jonathan and Matt Ervin planned a ski trip that was in many ways was awesome and in many ways was full of drama. We shoved about 13 people into a van and a jeep and drove all night long. At around 3:30 in the morning, Jonathan began blasting They Might Be Giants in order to stay awake. The songs were the funniest things I’d ever heard, and Jonathan singing and dancing while driving down the road through never-ending Texas was one of the funniest things I’ve ever seen.
"Our mouths were filled with laughter, our tongues with songs of joy." Psalm 126:2

“Istanbul (Not Constantinople)”

Istanbul was Constantinople
Now it's Istanbul, not Constantinople
Been a long time gone,
Constantinople
Now it's Turkish delight on a moonlit night
Every gal in Constantinople
Lives in Istanbul, not Constantinople
So if you've a date in Constantinople
She'll be waiting in Istanbul
Even old New York was once New Amsterdam
Why they changed it I can't say
People just liked it better that way
So take me back to Constantinople
No, you can't go back to Constantinople
Been a long time gone, Constantinople
Why did Constantinople get the works?
That's nobody's business but the Turks
Istanbul (Istanbul)Istanbul (Istanbul)
Even old New York was once New Amsterdam
Why they changed it I can't say
People just liked it better that way
Istanbul was Constantinople
Now it's Istanbul, not Constantinople
Been a long time gone, Constantinople
Why did Constantinople get the works?
That's nobody's business but the Turks
So take me back to Constantinople
No, you can't go back to Constantinople
Been a long time gone, Constantinople
Why did Constantinople get the works?
That's nobody's business but the Turks
Istanbul

Tuesday, March 4, 2008

Songs for JD: Day 1

Today is Jonathan’s birthday. I’ve decided that between now and the 15th, I’m going to do daily posts. Each day the post will be a song that reminds me of Jonathan. The songs will vary in genre and time. Some of them will be Jonathan’s favorites, some will be songs that have to do with Jonathan memories, and others will be songs that make me think of him now. I'm going to try to also include a Bible verse that correlates with the song or with the reasons why the song reminds me of JD. The Bible verse part will have to start with day 2 because I'm at a loss for one that will go with this song. If you can think of one...feel free to add it.
As for the songs, I’m going to start with one of Jonathan’s all-time favorite songs: “Desperately Wanting” by Better Than Ezra.

"Desperately Wanting"
Past the road to your house
That you never called home
Where they turned out your lights
Though they say you'll never know
I remember running through the wet grass
And failing a step behind
Bothof us never tiring
Desperately wanting
When they pumped out your guts
And filled you full of those pills
You were never quite right
Deserving all the chills
They say the worst is over
Kicked it over and ran
Then they ask what went wrong
When they turn you on again
They turn you on again.
[Chorus:]
Kick them right in the face
Make them wish they weren't born
And if they bring up your name
Well they'll say you won the war.
Baby burst in the world
Never given a chance
Then they ask what went wrong
When you never had it right
Oh the letters have dropped off
Though they say you got them all
I finally figured out some things you'll never know.
Take back your life and let me inside
We'll find the door if you care to anymore.
I remember running through the wet grass
and falling a step behind
Both of us never tiring
Desperately Wanting.