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Below are the 20 most recent journal entries recorded in Jonathon Winters' LiveJournal:

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Monday, February 27th, 2006
1:41 pm
MySpace
So, I'm thinking about migrating over to a MySpace blog. I resisted MySpace for quite a while, because I didn't see the point. Now that I have a profile and everything, seems like it might be a bit easier to have everything together. Not that I don't love Livejournal and all. But it has been kind of quiet around here lately. MySpace seems to be where it's at.

PS - it's snowing!
Friday, February 17th, 2006
11:57 am
The Theology of Lost
You knew it was only a matter of time. If we can have aTheology of The Simpsons...

So, what is Lost trying to say about truth, and faith, and doubt, and God? After seeing all of Season 1, I've come to the conclusion that Lost is essentially Perspectivist. Wikipedia to the rescue once again: Perspectivalism.

So the real question is not "Jack or Locke?" It's more along the lines of, how do their unique perspectives reveal a piece of the truth? Either that, or the producers are just trying to screw with our heads....
Thursday, February 9th, 2006
9:08 pm
More on the Vegan ethic...
I don't really want to talk about abortion again, because those discussions usually go pretty much nowhere, and I don't have a particularly strong opinion on the matter, anyway (certainly not as strong as the people who like to discuss it). But, since I've been thinking a lot about Richard Dawkins anyway, I wanted to point out something that I recently realized from reading the most current issue of The Believer: namely, that Peter Singer is a founding member of the "Great Ape Project," which Dawkins also has endorsed.

Basically, the Great Ape Project aims to extend basic human rights to Chimpanzees, Gorillas, etc. which, in itself, could be a noble goal (I think an orientation of taking the responsibility to care for other species is more in line with a creation ethic than is the animal rights perspective, but the two positions are complimentary). What seems ironic to me is that Peter Singer believes that not only abortion, but infanticide can be justified in some instances. I'm not going to argue against his position on infanticide here, but I would like to contrast his position with the "culture of life" position that I basically hold to. I'm thinking culture of life in the Pope JPII sense, rather than the Pres. GWB sense. How, I would ask rhetorically, can you favor extending human rights to apes, and simultaneously favor taking them away from certain humans? I say rhetorically, because I know Singer has a logically consistent philosophical basis for his position. But it still sounds weird to me.

I was wondering if anyone who actually read my last post (if anyone actually did read it), thought about me labelling Dawkins an "anti-humanist." I was sort of implying that humanism entails a certain amount of speciesism, which is not necessarily the case according to a more broad definition of humanist. I think that a more fundamental(ist?) version of humanism involves the belief that humanity has the ability to transcend natural processes -- either through culture, technology, etc. and that this is a good thing. In other words, humanity is distinctly better in some way than everything else (which doesn't make "everything else" unworthy of charity).

That's all I have time for now, except I also just wanted to say The Believer is probably the most pretentious magazine I've ever read. It blows Harper's out of the water in that department -- perhaps because it's not just intellectually pretentious, it's also artsy and hipstery. Just go ahead and read Robert Christgau's article on Eminem. Dude gives Em way to much credit. I like Eminem, but he's not THAT much of a genius. Or, at least, his genius is more instinctual than that. It can't really be dissected so much without becoming something that it's really not even trying to be -- pretentious, I guess.
Wednesday, February 8th, 2006
11:39 pm
Video Podcasts are great!
Let me just say that Vintage Tooncast is the BEST PODCAST EVER!
Tuesday, February 7th, 2006
10:13 am
What I'm doing instead of looking for a job
Last week I read this opinion piece in the Philadelphia Inquirer. It was written by Richard Dawkins, otherwise known as "Darwin's Rottweiler." I've been more troubled by this piece in the past week than I ever would have expected. For a while, I wasn't sure why Dawkins got under my skin so much. After all, I've read Bertrand Russell's Why I Am Not A Christian and other atheist tracts before. I've also been following the debate over Intelligent Design for quite a while, and nothing I've previously read has caused an existential crisis.

I've decided there are at least two reasons for my malaise. The first is my social environment. When I read Russell, I was at Houghton, surrounded by a caring community of Christian intellectuals. Today, I often feel like I'm on my own. Perhaps I shouldn't feel that way, but I sense a certain casualness about the faith of my peers that domesticates the gospel. Not that I'm blaming my Christian friends by any means, because I'm certainly guilty of this casualness myself. It's a kind of de-sanctifying anti-holiness that says certain behaviors or beliefs don't really matter. For example: Do I really have to believe in Hell? Do I really have to give 10% of my money to the Church? Does it really matter what I do on Sunday mornings? These are questions that I would tend to answer in the negative. But there is a certain slippery slope at work here that leads to Antinomianism. Dawkins himself has pointed out the inconsistency of liberal Christianity. How can you believe in some things Jesus says ("blessed are the poor," "turn the other cheek" "let him who is without sin cast the first stone") and reject others (his apocalyptic eschatology)?

My point here is that the milieu of 21st century America is predominantly secular. I believe it is the task of the 21st century Church -- that it is my task -- to carve out some sacred space, and I haven't been doing it. I've been too busy conforming to the pattern of the world, making sure that everyone can see that my kind of Christianity is acceptable to modern sensibilities -- that it is comfortable, and ironically kitschy, that it asks nothing of you, that it is nothing more than another hipster accessory - a way to gain scene points. No wonder I feel shaken when confronted by a truly evangelical atheist.

The second and by far more important cause of my troubled spirit is what Dawkins' world looks like -- what if an intellectually militant, evangelical atheism were to triumph over a Christianity that has become flaccid and domesticated? The main argument of Dawkins' opinion piece is that religion causes more harm than good. Wouldn't the world be better off without religion? By itself, this is nothing more than an interesting hypothetical. The danger lies with those who would extend Dawkins' intellectual militancy into literal militancy. One could make a pretty strong argument that this is the predominant historical narrative of the 20th century -- the secular ideologies of the 19th century put into brutal practice. The result? More death and bloodshed than any other time in human history. More Christian martyrs than all previous centuries combined, many at the hands of secular Marxists. It's quite possible, in light of new historical evidence, that the Spanish Anarchists murdered more Catholic priests during the Spanish Civil War than individuals were executed during the entire course of the Spanish Inquisition.*

Dawkins' anti-humanism is perhaps as troubling as his desire to cleanse the world from religion. By "anti-humanism," I'm referring to the charges of "speciesism" which he has leveled at the rest of humanity. Since we are all made up of the same genetic material, we are no different from other species and, thus, it is wrong to think of humans as any better than animals -- so his reasoning goes. Again, he apparently fails to realize where this line of reasoning can (and has) gone. This "speciesist" argument is essentially a form of primitivism that sees humanity as nondistinct from the rest of nature. I like what Murray Bookchin (himself a secularist who is actually a humanist) says about this line of reasoning. He writes that it "denies the most salient attributes of humanity as a species and the potentially emancipatory aspects of Euro-American civilization. Humans are vastly different from other animals in that they do more than merely adapt to the world around them; they innovate and create a new world, not only to discover their own powers as human beings but to make the world around them more suitable for their own development, both as individuals and as a species." And further, "A return to mere animality...is a return not to freedom but to instinct, to the domain of 'authenticity' that is guided more by genes than by brains.... nothing could be more unrelenting in its sheer obedience to biochemical imperatives such as DNA or more in contrast to the creativity, ethics, and mutuality opened by culture and struggles for a rational civilization."

The most annoying aspect of the vegan ethic that sees humans as no different from other species is how obviously bourgeois it is. Just as there are (supposedly) no atheists in the fox holes, there are no vegans concerned about "speciesism" on deserted islands. Writes Bookchin, "Today, dabbling in primitivism is precisely the privilege of affluent urbanites who can afford to toy with fantasies denied not only to the hungry and poor and to the 'nomads' who by necessity inhabit urban streets but to the overworked employed." This also reminds me of a story Bookchin tells in another book which I unfortunately don't have. In a science museum located in a city somewhere, Bookchin once came across an exhibit showing things which have contributed to ecological destruction. The most prominently displayed item in the exhibit was a mirror. Bookchin wrote about how ironic it was to see indigent children from the urban ghetto walk by this mirror and be blamed (by self-righteous bourgeois biologists such as Dawkins, I might add) for the destruction of our environment.

I suppose I've gone on for long enough, but I haven't even gotten to the worst parts of Dawkins' essay. In his distaste for the religious education of young children, he encourages further state intervention into family life. Further, he misses the more important subject of the current education debate: the horrible failure of secular public education in the West not only to teach the three Rs, but to reinforce any values beyond capitalism and statism. I could go on about that...

The most disturbing feature of Dawkins' essay is the way he co-opts the words of the Apostle Paul. You can't be a follower of Jesus, I believe, without becoming an enemy of the kind of religion I find myself falling into. Paul might even welcome some of Dawkins' criticisms of Christianity (for example, while it is absurd to blame Nazism on Hitler's "Christianity," it is a valid and scathing criticism to point out the complicity of the vast majority of German Christians during World War II. And it's impossible to justify the Inquisition, even if the Anarchists were more blood-thirsty). However, when Paul wrote to Timothy about "The root of all evil," he pointed to a different social force than religion per se. He wrote "For the love of money is the root of all evil, perhaps better translated in the NRSV: "For the love of money is a root of all kinds of evil." Striking at the heart of the matter far better than by blaming religion for everything bad, Paul rather poignantly continues, "and in their eagerness to be rich some have wandered away from the faith and pierced themselves with many pains."

In light of the social prestige and monetary rewards Richard Dawkins has achieved from his spiritual rebellion, I don't think it is impertinent to question his motives. "I have been so well satisfied with the Christian religion that I have spent no time trying to find argument against it." So said William Jennings Bryan at the end of the Scopes trial. It seems to me that, in light of the insurmountable limits of human knowledge, it is only one who has been unsatisfied with his own, perhaps for more or less selfish reasons, who would dedicate his life to the destruction of another's faith.


* (There is a huge range of numbers for the Inquisition, probably greatly inflated by anti-Catholic propaganda from the post-Reformation era. The most recent studies, discussed on Wikipedia, have revised the death toll down to the range of 3250 deaths up to the year 1700. Studies sponsored by the Catholic Church -- not exactly an impartial source -- suggest an even lower death toll. Compare this to the much more efficient work of the Spanish Anarchists, whose victims included more than 4,000 priests, 2,000 monks and nearly 300 nuns, according to this BBC News article. 300 NUNS!)
Friday, January 27th, 2006
11:22 am
The search is on
If anyone knows of any good jobs in the Philadelphia area (besides Burger King), please let me know. I just purchased Office 2004 for Mac to work on my resume. I think that's a deductible job-search expense. If I itemize... Maybe I should try to itemize for 2006... One of life's great delimmas.
Tuesday, January 24th, 2006
11:18 pm
Philadelphia
I made it.
Friday, January 6th, 2006
9:42 pm
Bonus!
I'm already the most famous Frank Killingsworth on Google. Right ahead of the principle of Miller County Middle School, Colquitt, GA.
9:21 pm
noms de plume
One of those suppressed memories from middle school must have bubbled up the other day when I was trying to think of a good nom de plume (or is it "nome" with an "e?"). At least I think it was in middle school that I first heard the theory of "porn names." For obvious reasons, the women who "star" in pornographic films want to remain anonymous. So, as an easy way to think up an alias, they take the woman's middle name, and combine it with the street they grew up on to make their "porn name." Typical middle school idea.

I've been thinking about going by a different name for a while now, actually. For one thing, if you search for "Jonathon Winters" on Google, you mostly get fan sites for Jonathan Winters that are created by idiots who can't spell. If my writing ever moves beyond CDReviews, I'd like people to be able to find it on the web without filtering through a bunch of Jonathan Winters stuff. Not that Jonathan Winters isn't a great comedian and all... but, you know.

Long story short, I've been thinking about going by my middle and last name, Frank Winters, which is not a bad name, I think. But then I thought about that episode of the Simpsons where Homer changes his name to Max Power, and I thought perhaps a more evocative last name would be in order. The porn name thing didn't quite work for me, since I grew up on Center Street. But then I had a stroke of genius. My apartment in Portland was on Killingsworth Street.

Frank Killingsworth. It's perfect! Not only does it contain the word "Kill," which is plenty evocative in itself, but the initials are FK. Oooooo... It gives one chills. Frank Killingsworth rolls off the tongue quite nicely. Plus anyone from Portland might recognize it, and then they would know how cool I am for living in North Portland.

PS - The CDReviews year end extravaganza ends next week. Check it out here.
Saturday, December 24th, 2005
9:48 pm
A list
I can't seem to make my list of best 2005 albums, for some reason. And I don't really have to for CDReviews.com, anyway, so no big deal. I no longer think that 2005 was a bad year for music, per se, but I do feel like it was a real transition year. For me personally, as well as for the industry.

Anyway, I owe you all a list, so here's an interesting one that might be difficult to find, unless you, like me, subscribe to the All Songs Considered podcast. By the way, if you don't subscribe, I recommend doing so - or even better, listening to the show live if you can.

Here is a countdown of the top ten albums of 2005 according to NPR listeners, with my commentary:

10. Fiona Apple - Extraordinary Machine

For some reason, I think of Fiona Apple as this really scary, almost goth chick, though perhaps I'm confusing her with Shirley Manson of Garbage. Anyway, the only song of Apple's that I know is "Criminal" but what I've heard of Extraordinary Machine (pretty much just the first track) sounds nothing like that. In fact, it's kind of got this Cabaret, Nellie McKay vibe going on. Which was unexpected. But not unexpected enough for me to have the curiosity to check out the rest of the album.

9. Sigur Ros - ...Takk

Haven't heard this one yet, sadly. I hopefully will be getting a copy from one of my CDReviews cohorts before I move back East.

8. Clap Your Hands Say Yeah

This one definitely made my personal top 5. Maybe even number one. In my review I compared them to the Strokes, which to me makes so much more sense than comparing them to Talking Heads. If this one ages as well as _Is This It?_ it might make my all-time top 10.

7. Spoon - Gimme Fiction

Spoon is one of those bands that impress me more every time I hear them. "I Turn My Camera On" is almost as good of a song as "The Way We Get By." Emusic.com has a special right now for 50 free MP3s. I downloaded this album from there a couple days ago, and I've been listening to it ever since. Some of the songs kind of remind me of the more Beatlesque stuff from Elliot Smith's last album.

6. My Morning Jacket - Z

I got _It Still Moves_ from Joel about a month ago. I've only listened to it once or twice, and so far, I really don't care about this band -- certainly not enough to risk getting a virus from their CD.

5. The Decemberists - Picaresque

I suppose there will always be a soft spot in my heart for this band and this album in particular. On the other hand, I've come to realize that most of the bands from Portland are as overhyped as the city itself. Especially those Dandy Warhols. They are just awful. But it's probably unfair to lump the Decemberists in with the Dandys. The Decemberists really are unique.

4. The White Stripes - Get Behind Me Satan

Since I packed up my stereo, I've discovered that _Get Behind Me Satan_ sounds much better coming through full size floorstanding loudspeakers than it does through iPod earbuds. I still say the White Stripes get better with every album.

3. Death Cab For Cutie - Plans

I've only heard the first single from this, "When Soul Meets Body." Let me just say, I think it is TERRIBLE! Probably because Chris Walla just moved to Portland.

2. Bright Eyes - I'm Wide Awake, It's Morning

I think I may have listened to this at Dave Lilley's house on my last jaunt through Buffalo, but I really don't remember it. I have a hard time caring about singer/songwriters, but I do respect Conor Oberst. Perhaps someone will have to give me this one for Epiphany, so I can make a better judgment of it.

1. Sufjan Stevens - Illinois

What do I say about Sufjan? I am happy for him, really (even though I never got that interview). It's not like Illinois is not as good as his past albums. Michigan is still my favorite, but I certainly see how someone could like this one better. And, I hate being part of some pointless reactionary backlash that delights in insulting an artist just because he has become popular. And it's not like Sufjan has betrayed anybody or sold out or anything. BUT... I can't help feeling as though I've lost something. I know, I shouldn't (heck, I first heard about Sufjan on Pitchfork). But, when I ordered Michigan direct from Asthmatic Kitty and started talking it up to all my friends, it was like Sufjan was MY discovery. He was MINE. Now, I've had to give him up, because he belongs to the world. Illinois is a wonderful album - a masterpiece, really. But, I've come to associate it with this feeling of loss that I have, which makes it, in a completely subjective sense, less enjoyable to me. So, the next time someone asks me about this album, I'm probably just as likely to shrug and start talking about something else than I am to gush about how great it is. Yeah, it is great. But then, you already knew that, so what's the point of talking about it?
Wednesday, December 14th, 2005
6:24 am
Good riddance, Hipsteria, you succubus.
I'm not sure, cause it's never happened to me before, but I think this is what it feels like to get used. I hate this soul-sucking ephemeral city and its kids with haircuts from magazines.

In the words of Ben Folds, give me my money back... you know the rest.

PS The Bravery SUCK.
Saturday, November 26th, 2005
6:01 pm
two things
1. I am preaching tomorrow. My dad asks me every time he goes away, and I guess he finally talked me into it. If I'm going to be a pastor, I've got to be able to preach. I believe this will be my first "real" sermon, though I have taught Sunday School before. Am I nervous? Not really. For one thing, my parents church is really small right now (only about 30-40 people currently, and probably only 25 will be there because of holiday stuff). For another, I actually have a decent amount of confidence, though I'm not exactly sure where it came from. Perhaps by tomorrow morning I will start being nervous.

2. I went to a punk show on Monday with this girl from work. We went out to eat, and then we saw Reliant K and MxPx at the Crystal Ballroom. I suppose you could call it a date. And, umm... wow. I had a great time. I know I'm not the best at reading signals, but it kind of seems like she might actually like me. Which is weird, because I haven't gotten that impression from a girl who seemed so cool in a really long time (the last time I ended up being mistaken, too...but that is another story).

So, why am I writing something this personal in here? Mostly because I think it is pretty frustrating that this is (or seems to be) happening right as I'm preparing to leave Portland for the east coast. I know I have to work within the contingencies of human interaction, and yet I still find myself asking God if He might be willing to give me some insight into his timing on this. At any rate, my current plans are still to head out to Philly sometime in late January or early February.

Brian, did you get my voicemail or did you lose your phone again? I need some dates if you have them (when do you want me there? when are you moving?) I think I'm going to buy a train ticket soon. I'll e-mail you...
Friday, November 18th, 2005
10:48 pm
Year-End Extravaganza
I have difficulty being excited about music lately. I don't really care what makes the year-end list and what doesn't. I don't even care much about Sufjan anymore.

Not that I'm depressed about it or anything, just kind of.... I don't know. "Burnt out" is not the right way to put it. Probably the reason I keep thinking 2005 was a bad year for music was because it was when I realized the critical enterprise cannot possibly be successful. There's too much music out there. We've got a music glut. What's popular will never be what is cool, what is cool will never be what is actually good, and what is actually good will never be recognized as such by more than two people at a time without a third playing the naysayer.

Neither can my own knowledge of music ever be complete. The more I learn the more it seems I have to learn. And there are always the Wm. Steven Humphrey's and Nick Hornby's of this world who not only know vastly more than me, but write vastly better than me. It gives new meaning to "a chasing after the wind."

It seems the only logical possibility is retreat into sub-cultural obscurity. Which is sad, because it means the broader cultural conversation has been silenced. Sure, I can think Dear and The Headlights is the greatest band to come along in years, but that means nothing to almost everyone else. Culture isn't culture if it isn't shared. This dearth of bridging social capital does not bode well for public discourse, etc. etc.

Rock and roll has always been commercial. But shouldn't it be more than a lifestyle accessory? I don't know. Maybe I'm trying to attach too much importance to something that's supposed to be about forgetting that kind of stuff.

I see why some people just listen to the Beatles. It becomes difficult to feign interest every time somebody starts talking about how great the Dandy Warhols are, or how Wolf Revolver are the next Velvet Arcade and how they are reminescent of early Mr. Bunglepuppy. I just need to decide what music matters so I can stop trying to care about everything else. It's tiring.
Friday, November 11th, 2005
9:43 pm
The Village
If anyone doesn't know yet, I will soon be moving to Philadelphia.

In related news, I've just discovered that Philly is the home of M. Night Shyamalan. I discovered this while reading about The Village at RottenTomatoes.com. If you haven't seen this film yet, you might not want to read the rest of this post.

Does anyone else think The Village was criminally underrated? I didn't bother seeing it until this afternoon, because of the tepid response it received from critics and audiences. Even most critics who did like it seemed to think it didn't measure up to The Sixth Sense. Yet it's actually a far better film than The Sixth Sense, as James Berardinelli explains in his review.

He writes:

"The Village doesn't feature a trick on the level of The Sixth Sense or Unbreakable. There are two or three revelations, but they're more in the line of surprising plot developments than major story contortions. It's possible to guess them ahead of time, and it's equally possible to enjoy The Village if you figure them out before they are explicitly revealed. That's the big difference between The Village and The Sixth Sense. The latter movie was utterly ruined if you put the pieces together before the last ten minutes; The Village holds together regardless."

Unlike Berardinelli, Roger Ebert seemed to miss the point of this film altogether. Actually, his review refuses to even engage with this film at all -- an uncharacteristically flippant reaction from one of the few film critics who understood the point and poignancy of The Passion of The Christ.

The Village is Shyamalan's best film, visually, dramatically, and allegorically. I'll admit to being taken in by The Sixth Sense, but in hindsight, I see where Berardinelli is coming from -- the thrills of that film do seem cheap in retrospect. What makes The Village especially fantastic is that, unlike Shyamalan's other films, it's not at all fantastical. Even the dialog, which seems so unnatural at first, makes perfect sense when you realize it's intentionality. If it seems too obvious that the people on screen are acting, that's because, after all, some of them are. For the rest, this particular manner is all they've ever known. In other words, once you realize that this film is NOT a period piece, but is a film about people trying to create a world that feels like a period piece, you can hardly fault it for unrealistic dialog -- at least no more so than, say Rozencrantz and Guildenstern. Then again, maybe you just need to "get into it" for it to work.

Beyond that, however, the questions this film raises are what will stick with me. Is innocence sometimes more important than truth? Can superstition be justified if it serves a social purpose? Is Utopia possible? Is it ever permissible to experiment with human subjects? Where does evil truly reside, and can we save ourselves from it? And, perhaps it's a stretch, but the question that I see as most central to the film: How is it that pre-modern belief systems persist and thrive in a post-modern world? The answers this film suggests are ambiguous. It seems the pre- and post- factions both contain a piece of the puzzle. Further, it seems our color-coded, nationalistic xenophobia does dimly reflect the terrifying truths of spiritual warfare obvious to those whose lives are so precarious and full of fear that they cannot fail to thank God for the grace of the moment.
Monday, October 31st, 2005
10:17 am
stupid, stupid, stupid
I know this won't make sense to anyone but.... STUPID CONTRACT! Oh well, it's only money, right?
Friday, October 28th, 2005
12:32 pm
Seminaries
So, I went to this thing a couple days ago about graduate school. I know it might not apply perfectly to seminary, but I feel like it was somewhat analogous. One of the things the presenter said was, when applying to grad schools, you should apply to at least two "safe" schools, two "reach" schools and two "in-between" schools. I am having a hard time coming up with six Seminaries/Divinity Schools. Besides the ones my friends are in (Palmer and Asbury Seminaries), I am pretty much only interested in two of the United Methodist divinity schools so far - Duke and Drew. I also might consider Multnomah if I was to come back out to Oregon. That gets me up to five. Any suggestions for number six?
Sunday, October 16th, 2005
10:51 pm
Evolution
Here's an interesting article on the supposed evolutionary link between dinosaurs and birds.

I know sometimes Christians who are skeptical of the evolution metanarrative jump on any debate in the biological sciences as proof that they are in disarray and that the evolutionary consensus is as much the result of human whim and wishful thinking (i.e. if evolution proves that there's no God, I can act however I want!) as it is of actual evidence. I think this greatly overstates the case. Nevertheless, I always find it interesting when I hear scientists talking about "the beginnings of the meltdown" of their field.

I've come to the conclusion that these debates have little, if anything, to do with my faith, despite the insistence of the fundamentalist, sometimes quite bizarrely backward, though wonderfully skeptical (when it suits them) folks in the Answers in Genesis camp. Nevertheless, the debates, whether scientific, pseudo-scientific, or entirely political, should prove to be lively entertainment for years to come.
Saturday, September 24th, 2005
12:57 pm
Anime
Does anybody have any suggestions for some good Anime? Or even better, is there a website or something that has a list of "Best Anime?" I really love the stuff, but I'm pretty ignorant as to what is considered "essential" or even good quality examples of the genre.

Here's the anime I've seen:
A few of the Studio Ghibli films (I LOVE these, by the way)
a few episodes of Pokemon and Yu-Gi-Oh
Record of Lodoss War (the entire series)
Akira
Some episodes of Cowboy Bebop
Ghost in the Shell
A couple episodes of a Samurai show
One or two other movies that weren't good enough to remember.

And, as of last night, I have also seen Episodes 1-4 of Evangelion: Neon Genesis. It seems like a really good series -- a good mixture of humor, melodrama, apocalyptica, and impossible futuristic technology. I might pick up the next four episodes from blockbuster today.
Saturday, September 17th, 2005
3:07 pm
Another update
So, I'm back in Portland after Moochfest Midwest/East Coast Tour 2005. The day after I got back, there was a call from the IRS. Because of Hurricane Katrina, they have converted several call sites to FEMA, which means they need more people around to actually answer tax law questions. So, they asked me to come back. Not an exciting prospect by any means, but I need the money too much to pass it up.

The good news is I only have to last through November at this job, then I get a month of free education to learn all about the tax consequences of pensions and IRAs. After that, I'm planning on quitting and looking for something more worthwhile - either here or in Philadelphia.

I'm also probably only paying for one more month at my apartment. No point in paying rent if I'm going to be leaving Portland soon anyway. So it's back to my parents house for a couple months at least. It will probably be better than living alone anyway.
Tuesday, August 9th, 2005
2:18 pm
There is hope...
I decided a long time ago that I didn't want to have the internet in my apartment because I would waste too much time on here. Well, I found out a couple of weeks ago that I can (sometimes) patch into a wireless network from my living room. Sure enough, my suspicions have been confirmed. I've been wasting a lot of time lately going to stupid websites like HotorNot.com. Pretty silly, I know. On the other hand, if I meet a really hot blonde girl who is into theology and Sufjan Stevens, maybe it will be worth it. Lo and behold, such a person actually does exist! Do I want to meet her? Umm... yeah. I could really use a Koine Greek tutor if I'm going to go to seminary.

Seriously though, I got to stop wasting all my time on here. If you see me on IM or anything, tell me to get off. I need accountability.
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