Wednesday, June 23, 2010

Time and Space

"When time and space are through/I'll be found in You..."
- Brooke Fraser

I had to read an article in one of my master's degree history classes that dealt with the issue of time, space, and how the Industrial Revolution changed these concepts.  It's a really thought-provoking concept, and one I try to share with my students when we discuss the Industrial Revolution (some of them kind of get it, but I basically want to expose them to some higher-level thinking).

It is fairly obvious that time and space have changed over time.  The invention of the car undoubtedly made it easier to travel and get to places.  The invention of the airplane made international travel more available and made foreign places more tangible.  The invention of the computer (coupled with the internet) and telephone made communication all over the world possible.

Communication, publication, and travel were a totally different concept 200 years ago, when ten miles away seemed far, and Asia might has well have been on another planet.  Read a Jane Austen novel, and you'll understand that it took days upon days to travel miles, that simple things like indoor plumbing did not exist, and that letters took time to reach people.  (Bear with me, I'm getting to my  point.)

The time it took to get to places in the past - well, it was a long time.  Gainesville seems like a blink away from me now, but it must have seemed far away to Jeremy's ancestors who lived in the house next door to us.  Space changes, too.  Atlanta isn't that far away from me -and really, not many places are that far away from me in the continental United States when using a plane.  Jeremy and I got to Italy in nine hours.  Years ago, Gainesville was at least an hour away, Atlanta was a day away, and Italy probably seemed a lifetime away.  With technology, time and space changed.

Because of the advantages of technology, I have a lot more time.  I don't have to spend my time scrubbing clothes, washing dishes by hand, penning hand-written updates to family members.  I don't have to worry about my garden, where my next meal is going to come from, or where to get the supplies to take care of my child.

I also have the advantage of space.  I could hop on a plane and be just about anywhere in a 24-hour time span.  The world is more interconnected and accessible now.

I have time.  I have the advantage of space.

So, here's my point:  what am I doing about it?

I don't have to endure the rigorous chores of the past, so what am I doing to compensate for my extra time?  Am I using my time in an honorable way? Am I taking advantage of the fact that I could help others in faraway lands via the click of my computer mouse or through the purchase of a plane ticket? 

I  have the ability to use time and space to further goodness and God's greater purpose.

My prayer is that I'll be able to remember this and not be wasteful.

Monday, June 21, 2010


Jeremy and I have been married for six years!

That's a long time.

I mean, it's not fifty years long, but it's a long time for someone who has only lived for 30 years.

Let me be clear:  I am very, very blessed to have Jeremy in my life.  I joke about him, I whine to him, I pick on him, and I am not nearly the wife I should be, and yet he endures all of my faults with such forbearance.  When I told him I was writing "Da Beard," he laughed and helped give me lines to write.  THAT'S my husband.  He's funny, smart, patient, and kind.  He isn't perfect, but neither am I.

Personally, I think we're getting better with age. 

Tuesday, June 15, 2010

Da Beard

"Is it back?"

Jeremy asks me this question all of the time.

I know what he is talking about.  I choose to ignore him.

Okay, I don't ignore him.  Ignoring Jeremy is like ignoring a) sirens b) that incessant buzzing from vuvuzelas that goes on during World Cup games or c) that big zit that just WON'T GO AWAY.    Jeremy loves to push buttons. Ignoring him only makes him worse.

(Yeah, I said "zit."  I'm pretty sure that just dropped the maturity level of this blog down a few notches.)

Anyway, Jeremy asks me "is it back?" all of the time.

"Is what back?" I eventually answer back, playing along.

"DA BEAAARD!"  He says, and then he rubs his scratchy face/neck/whole head.

Jeremy always grows a beard during the summer.  I would like to tell you that it is his way of rebelling against those stringent teacher dress codes, but any dress code that allows Nike Shox is probably not as ferocious as one thinks.

I guess he grows a beard because he can.  It's summer.  Jeremy's thinking is a little catawampus.  For Jeremy, long-sleeved t-shirts and beards in the summer make sense.

This year, the beard is a little chaotic.  The beard has taken on a life of its own.  It is much, much longer than any beard I've ever seen on him, and we've been together for almost eight years.  It's starting to curl on the ends.    Seriously, this beard is out of control.

I found it ordering Domino's one day and had to stop it before another stinky pepperoni pizza entered our home (nothing against Domino's - their pizzas are just garlicky).  Amelia cried the other day when the beard tried to give her a kiss.  The beard even told me the other day that it's a little redundant to have Netflix AND the movie channels - we needed to choose one to save a little money. 

All joking aside...this beard is fierce.  And I don't mean "fierce" in a good way.

This beard, in addition to Jeremy's legendary bandana/do-rag, and his newly cracked tooth make him look a little like Willie Nelson. He looks like Jeremiah Johnson if Jeremiah Johnson decided to do P90X.  He looks like...well, you get the picture.  If not, here's a real picture for proof:

So, I'm asking for your help.  If you're one of the three people reading this blog, will you support my cause?  Please tell Jeremy he needs to shave.  Puh-lease.

He's scaring innocent children.  Do it for them.


Saturday, June 5, 2010

Random Thoughts, Part III

...or is it part IV?  (Is this blog really prestigious enough to use Roman numerals?  Hmmm.)

1. Do you ever feel bad buying clothes from Forever 21?  I mean, you know that cute top should probably cost more than $13.80.  Do you ever feel like there's some ulterior-motive sketchiness involved with Forever 21?  I mean, I like their stuff, I just hope some kid in Pakistan isn't getting paid 4 cents an hour to make it...
2. Do you know what I liked to eat as a child?  Raw spaghetti.  Isn't that gross?  I also liked raw potatoes.

3.  I am seriously considering voting for some dead old guy from Georgia's history to be governor in this next election...just because I can. Honestly, can either candidate can fulfill his promises?  It would be seriously funny to type in "Eugene Talmadge," or "Zell Miller," or some other crap candidate on the ballot.

4.  My friend and co-worker Jenny (who I'm pretty sure won't read this) is the only one who might giggle at #4.   Sigh. All of that typing for naught...

5.    Why is it that only older people can kill snakes?  Jerm's mom found one in her garage today, and she called her dad (Jerm's Poppa) to come and kill it.  He came over with his hoe killed it - no problem.  When my sister found a snake in her room, she jumped on the bed and screamed.  Then, Mom thought she could kill the snake, but she couldn't do it.  Mom, D'Anna and I just stood on top of D'Anna's bed and screamed like scared little girls.  Mom called Granny.  Granny came over with her hoe, looked at the tiny snake, and said, "really?  Is this it?"  Compared to the Great Depression, maybe snakes aren't so bad.  I wish I had the unabashed fearlessness of snakes that the older folks have.  The only thing funny about snakes is that they were once on a plane with Samuel L. Jackson.

6.  Something about an evening like this one makes me think about VBS.  And cookies and Kool-Aid.  Felt pictures of Moses.  I love it.

7.  Amelia can blow kisses now and say "bottle."  She blows her kisses backward, with the front of her hand to her mouth.  When she says, "bottle," it is really more like, "bahh-uhhhl."  It sounds like she's a Cockney Brit.  I know that this is not technically a random thought --- but I had to mention how stinkin' cute my kid is.

8.  I would rather go flying head first into a whole pile of McRibs than to hear Dennis Miller utter anything.  He has, quite possibly, the most annoying voice on earth.  McRibs...ugh.  They make me shudder.  But Dennis Miller...well, he makes me shudder more.  (And I mention his name because Jeremy has been watching countless hours of his stand-up...ugh...shoot me now!)

9. What's so American about American cheese?  Is this really the cheese we have chosen to represent our country?  I mean...aren't there some excellent other decent American cheeses out there that could have the name "American?"  What about good ol' cheddar?  I'm saddened that the orange-ish, individually wrapped substance is the best America has to offer.  No wonder the French sniff at us.  (And I eat American cheese, by the way.  I eat all cheese.  But it is by far my least favorite...I guess I'm a cheese snob?)

10.  Did anyone else out there read the Sweet Pickles books?  Yeah.  Those were awesome.  Mentioning those also makes me think of that show Today's Special on Nickelodeon, where the mannequin-guy in a store turns into a person and dances around the store.  Don't ask me why those correlate in my head.

11. Whoever invented the fly flap should be awarded a special crown in heaven.  Is it just me, or are the flies insane this year?

12.  I would like to ride in a DeLorean - at least once.  Imagine what kind of flux-capacitating fun I could have!  There's something about the DeLorean - the "80s" and "the future" all in one car.  Ahhh.