Category Archives: This or That

Left Behind


We rut-bound Christians tend to focus on the same details of every Bible story, without looking between the lines for other twists on the tale. So I always enjoy poking around where ministers, for whatever reason, don’t bother to tread.

After feeding the 5000, Jesus went off somewhere by himself. John 6:16 says the disciples climbed into their boat and set sail for Capernaum. That’s when the storm came, and Jesus did his water-walking thing.

But I’m wondering: Why did they take off without Jesus? I’m sure it wasn’t an oversight. The Bible says, “It was dark and Jesus had not yet joined them.” So, they just abandoned him?

Perhaps one of the disciples (probably John) argued, “I think we should wait for Jesus.” To which bullheaded Peter responded, “No, we’re leaving. He should be more conscious of time. We told him when we planned to head back to Capernaum but he hasn’t shown up, so tough. He can take a cab.”

When Jesus finally climbed into the boat after scurrying across the waves, I’m guessing his first words were, “Hey guys, what’s the deal? Why did you leave without me? What were you thinking, huh?”

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Confiscated Fish and Bread?

My Bible reading last night was about the feeding of the 5000 in John 6. We kind of idolize the boy who contributed his five barley loves and two fish. But I’m wondering–did he actually volunteer them?

Scripture says Andrew comes along and says, “He’s a boy with five loaves and two fish.” Did he just commandeer them? Did the boy give up his food willingly? Did they ask his parents? Where WERE his parents?

You know, inquiring minds and all.

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Why Don’t We Celebrate This?


On this Canada Day, I want to honor my Canadian friends whose find country provided many indispensable inventions for the world. We’re talking more than Justin Bieber. And we’re talking more than obvious inventions like hockey, snowblowers, snowmobiles, and the hockey mask.

That’s only the beginning. Canadians have also furthered intergalactic civilization by giving us insulin, paint rollers, garbage bags, plexiglass, pagers, peanut butter, the Blackberry, Superman, the sport of basketball, AM radio, Smarties, foghorns, sonar, Trivial Pursuit, lacrosse, Easy Off oven cleaner, alkaline batteries, caulking guns, the wonderbra, and numerous comedians.

So a big thank you from your friends to the south. We promise not to annex you until we absolutely must have all of your oil.

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Taking the Guilt Out of Grilling Steaks

I grill a lot. Especially love doing ribeyes. So I was drawn to an article which addresses 7 myths about cooking steaks. I learned a lot.

One myth is that it’s bad to cut into a steak to see if it’s done. I’ve heard this numerous times, but flagrantly disobey it. It just so much easier than, say, using a thermometer, to just make a cut into the side of the steak or hamburger to see how much pink remains.

I will now do so with reckless and unrepentant abandon.

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What Drowning Really Looks Like


This is a fascinating and imminently valuable article, with lots of information I didn’t know. Real-life drownings look nothing like drownings on TV shows, with people crying for help and waving their arms. Real drownings are very quiet. A couple excerpts:

“Of the approximately 750 children who will drown next year, about 375 of them will do so within 25 yards of a parent or other adult. According to the CDC, in 10 percent of those drownings, the adult will actually watch the child do it, having no idea it is happening.”

“Sometimes the most common indication that someone is drowning is that they don’t look like they’re drowning. They may just look like they are treading water.”

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Steaks: Fact or Fiction?

I grill a lot. Especially love doing ribeyes. I found an article which addresses 7 myths about cooking steaks. I learned a lot.

One myth is that it’s bad to cut into a steak to see if it’s done. I’ve heard this many times, but flagrantly disobey it. I will now do so with reckless and unrepentant abandon.

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People are Watching Me WHERE?

public-restroomsMichigan State University researchers camped out in public restrooms, and discovered that only 5 percent of people properly washed their hands long enough to kill germs. The 12 researchers observed 3700 people.

What’s really creepy is the idea of researchers hanging out in public restrooms, watching what we do.

A few observations from their preying eyes:

  • 10% skipped handwashing entirely (15% of men, 7% of women).
  • Only 50% of men and 79% of women used soap.
  • The average time spent washing hands: 6 seconds.

FYI, here’s the “proper” way to wash your hands, according to the study.

  1. Wet your hands with clean, running water and apply soap.
  2. Rub your hands together to make a lather while scrubbing well.
  3. Make sure you get the backs of your hands, between the fingers, and under the nails. Keep this up for 20 seconds.
  4. Rinse under running water.
  5. Dry with a clean towel or air dryer.
  6. Then grasp the bacteria-infested doorknob and leave the restroom. (Okay, I added that last one.)
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Unintended Consequences

Fort Gordon, an Army base in Augusta, Georgia, upgraded its land-mobile radios. Since then, nearly 500 residents have complained that their garage doors won’t open.

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The Facebook Exodus Among the Young

Interesting Pew study about why teens are losing interest in Facebook.

  • Too many adults are using Facebook.
  • They’re annoyed when people post inane details about their lives.
  • They are drained by all the “drama” on the site.
  • It’s too stressful managing their reputation on Facebook.
  • Other sites, like Twitter and Instagram, have fewer social expectations.
  • Facebook has become an exhausting extension of their everyday lives.
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When Editors have had Enough

legalismSuddenly in a grumpy mood, Steve the Editor wants to remind everyone (despite knowing he will once again be ignored):

1. Do NOT type two spaces between sentences. That has never, EVER, been appropriate anywhere except on typewriters with monospaced fonts. So just quit it. Now.

2. An elipsis within a sentence has 3 periods…not 4. Put the fourth at the end of the sentence.

3. Don’t underline text, especially in email or on the web. Underlining indicates a hyperlink, which people can click to go someplace else. On a typewriter, to emphasize something you had two options: underline, and all-caps. But now you have other options: bold, italics, larger font size. If it’s a book title or something else that would be underlined on a typewriter, use italics.

4. Don’t put apostrophe’s in plural’s. I mean, just stop it, okay? You’re embarrassing yourself.

There are plenty of other literary transgressions, children, for which I could castigate you. But I’ll stop here.

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