Saturday, October 31, 2009

The Big Hardee and Sherlock Holmes..

I imagine you are wondering the connection between those two. Read on and see.

I was in the Kentucky Oaks Mall area at lunch. I saw on the Hardees marquee that the Big Hardee combo was available for 3.99. You've no doubt seen their commercials about how great it is and how it puts the Big Mac to shame. I am a Big Mac guy. That is my standard order at McDonalds. I ordered it on my first date with Donna. Jonathan orders it now. You can say what you want about McDonalds, but I have always found that I consistently get a decent meal from one no matter where I go.

I ordered the Big Hardee and let me tell you, it was more disappointing than I even thought it would be. First off, it looks NOTHING like the ads. I looked at what I got and looked at its picture on the menu board. It didn't even resemble what I had. The burgers do not reach the edge of the bun like the picture showed. I didn't even get a bit of burger on my first bite. The burgers aren't that great, the sauce wasn't as good as a Big Mac's, and it had too much lettuce. I won't be switching.

I got home and settled down to watch Superman - Batman:Public Enemies on DVD (we'd Netflixed it). One of the trailers was for the new Sherlock Holmes movie with Morton Downey Jr. To be honest, I was already a bit concerned about him playing Holmes (although he did OK with Iron Man).

I am a big Sherlock Holmes fan. I've got all the books. I read the first group of adventures when I was young and thought he'd died in the "The Adventure of the Final Problem" only to find out he came back from that to be in even more adventures (which I promptly gobbled up). I've read and re-read them. They are among my favorite set of books (right up there with Mark Twain and Jules Verne).

Well, watching the trailer just disappointed me again. He doesn't play Holmes anything like the books. There also appears to be a love interest for him. Any Holmes fan knows that NEVER happened in the books. The only woman he really respected was Irene Adler (in "Scandal in Bohemia"). The books concentrated on his keen analytical deductions of mysteries and even had some excellent adverture scenes in them. This trailer just left me with a bad feeling in my mouth.

That's two disappointments in one day. Hopefully, Kentucky beats Mississippi State tonight..

Wednesday, October 28, 2009

No Respect...

Interesting quote from Kurt Warner when asked about if the Cardinals felt they got enough recognition after their Sunday night win over the Giants.

You know, I don't think a lot of people care about it but... there's always a part of you that want people to recognize what you're doing, and you want them to recognize the things that you represent. And that's one of the things that I don't think we get enough of. And yeah, maybe rightfully so that we haven't had a lot of success here so you understand it. ...I watched some highlights on ESPN yesterday, and they didn't show a single offensive highlight of the Arizona Cardinals when they talked about our game. It was all focused on the Giants and granted we made some plays in there, but it just continually amazes you that after the success we had last year and going to the Super Bowl, that we still don't get very much national recognition. ...People continue to think of us, I think as a second rate team and organization, and that's what we want to change and we want to make sure you know the guys in that locker room, that we get the credit that we deserve for the football that we're playing.

He's right about "we haven't had a lot of success here". Being a Cardinals fan for almost 35 years, that's an understatement. Also,(in my opinion), ESPN has a severe East Coast bias. Granted, I only see ESPN when I am out of town, but that is what it looks like to me. I jokingly tell Jonathan during baseball season that it ought to be called RSYN (Red Sox Yankees Network). He just laughs and says "They just talk about the best team (his Yankees) and you're just jealous".

Kurt, just keeping using these kinds of things to keep you and your teammates motivated...

Tuesday, October 27, 2009

Weekend at Lexington

Our last trip to Lexington was over Labor Day holiday. We've kept in touch with Josh via Email,Texts, and Skype but we still wanted to be with him in person. We'd picked out the weekend of the 24th of October for several reasons. The main was that the North Lexington congregation was having a Ladies Day that Saturday and Donna wanted to go to that. UK was to play Louisiana Monroe in football as well and I managed to snag a really good seat. So, we went up last weekend.

We left Friday and made it without incident. We ended up staying at the Hampton Inn in Georgetown (about 20 minutes north of Lexington). It was much cheaper (the hotels in Lexington raise their rates on football weekends). Plus, we were more isolated from raucous celebrators (if you get my drift). The hotel was nice like most Hamptons I've ever gone to are. We checked in and went to meet Josh at his dorm.

He came out and we exchanged hugs and greetings. We had brought up a supply of Hot Pockets in a cooler (Josh and his roommate eat them a lot). Josh took the cooler into his dorm and was stopped by the attendant who made him show him what was in it. I never thought of how that might look (bringing in a cooler) but I am actually glad that they are conscientious enough to check there.

Josh then took me to the "Underground". The Underground is a workout area underneath the dorm next to Josh's. They have machines and free weights plus treadmills and the like. Josh and I worked out together. He showed me how much stronger he'd gotten (he goes regularly to stay in shape) plus some variations on some upper body work I'd been doing. I survived it but was sore the next evening.

We then went to the hotel and to Ruby Tuesday's to eat dinner. Josh ordered a steak and we split a dessert. I was happy to find out they served Coke Zero. We then went to Wal-mart to lay in supplies for him. We went back to the hotel and I helped him a bit with some C++ programming. Finally, Josh just crashed out and we did a bit later as well.

The next morning, Donna left to take Josh back to his dorm and then she would go on to Ladies Day. When Josh got to the parking log where his car his (Commonwealth Stadium), they were already towing cars. One of the stipulations for that lot is you have to have your car out on Saturdays when there are UK football games. Josh's car had orange tape to be towed, but fortunately he got his car out just in time. He parked at a friend's house, then Donna took him to his dorm. Donna went to the Ladies Day and really enjoyed it. Shelia Butt spoke on "Sisterhood" and Donna got a lot out of it. I spent the day at the hotel on the treadmill, then doing some Bible reading and finally watching a DVD I had Netflixed and hadn't had a chance to watch (Wolverine - X-men Origins).

Donna got back and we drove to campus. We parked our car in the same spot Josh had and walked. We went to the K-Lair to eat. This is an on-campus restaurant that Josh works at. He was working and we got to see him "in action" plus he got to hang out with us a bit. I walked Donna back to the car and then walked back to Commonwealth Stadium (I ended up getting in almost 6 miles just walking back and forth).

I got to the UK-ULM game and found my seat was as good as I thought it would be. I was on the 50 yard line 24 rows up and had and excellent view of the game. It was a bit nippy but I had dressed for the occasion. UK jumped on them 21-0 and it looked like it was going to be a rout. However, it appeared UK relaxed a bit and ULM got to within 28-7 and just missed another touchdown at the end of the half when the clock ran out. UK had no offense at all in the 2nd half. ULM moved the ball but fortunately only scored one touchdown. UK finally got a safety and ran an interception back for a TD to win 36-13. They'll have to play better than that to beat Mississippi State next week. I met Josh on the walk back and we met Donna and the car and went back to the hotel for the night.

We got up the next morning and checked out and went to North Lexington for Bible class and worship services. We went to Josh's college class with him. Afterwards, we ate at Wendy's and then had to take him back to his dorm for goodbyes. It was sad. We had a lot of fun together and he seems to be doing wonderfully, but we still miss him a lot.

Saturday, October 17, 2009

Delta Gone...

Well, its official. Skywest will replace Mesaba as the Barkely Regional Airport regional carrier. This means that the hub will now be O'Hare in Chicago instead of the Memphis Airport.

I'll miss the Memphis Airport. I knew just where to grab a pretzel or get something more substantal to eat (Backyard Burgers or Popeyes was my usual destination). I know Donna will miss my renditions of "Walkin' in Memphis" that she got to hear to let her know I'd landed safely.

I've never been to O'Hare. I've read it's the second largest airport in the US (behind Hartsfield in Atlanta). There will defintely be more flight options there than in Memphis (the claim is twice as many). I have no idea about food options (always an important consideration for me). I'll definitely give it a try on my nice trip to Chicago (as opposed to a 6.5 hour drive) to see how it compares. The planes are supposed to be bigger (50 vs 36 seat) and faster.

Tuesday, October 13, 2009


When Donna and I went to our vacation in Nashville, we wanted to visit some places there we'd always heard about, but had never gone to. My first thought was the Hermitage (home of Andrew Jackson). However, I found out tickets were 17.00 APIECE. That seemed a bit steep to me. My apologies Mr. Jackson...

We also decided to go to the Parthenon. The Parthenon is a full-scale replica of the original Parthenon in Athens. It was built in 1897 as part of the Tennessee Centennial Exposition. It is located in Centennial Park (close to Vanderbilt).

It's a very impressive structure. We walked all around it and checked out the massive columns and the huge bronze doors. It was only 5.00 apiece to go inside (and I had a dollar off coupon), so we went in. The facility hosts displays on the history of the building, a presentation on the original Parthenon in Athens, and an art museum.

It also houses a full scale replica of Athena. Athena was the Greek goddess the temple was built for. This is supposed to be the largest indoor statue in the US. The picture at the top of this blog entry will show you what it looks like. The statue is covered in gold leaf. She holds an image of Nike (Greek goddess of victory and the namesake of the tennis shoe corporation) in her hand.

As I looked at all this, I couldn't help but think of Paul in Athens and his sermon on the Areopagus. He would have been able to see the original Parthenon from where he spoke.

16 Now while Paul waited for them at Athens, his spirit was stirred in him, when he saw the city wholly given to idolatry. 17 Therefore disputed he in the synagogue with the Jews, and with the devout persons, and in the market daily with them that met with him. 18 Then certain philosophers of the Epicureans, and of the Stoics, encountered him. And some said, What will this babbler say? other some, He seemeth to be a setter forth of strange gods: because he preached unto them Jesus, and the resurrection. 19 And they took him, and brought him unto Areopagus, saying, May we know what this new doctrine, whereof thou speakest, is? 20 For thou bringest certain strange things to our ears: we would know therefore what these things mean. 21 (For all the Athenians, and strangers which were there, spent their time in nothing else, but either to tell or to hear some new thing.) 22 Then Paul stood in the midst of Mars' hill, and said, Ye men of Athens, I perceive that in all things ye are too superstitious. 23 For as I passed by, and beheld your devotions, I found an altar with this inscription, TO THE UNKNOWN GOD. Whom therefore ye ignorantly worship, him declare I unto you.

My understanding of this is that even with all the idols in the city of Athens, their reared up an altar "TO THE UNKNOWN GOD" in case they had missed one. Paul was able to use this to preach to them about God and Jesus. What would Paul see if he came to our city to look around I wonder? He wouldn't see the images reared up like then. But that certainly doesn't mean we don't have idols today. Anything that we make the primary focus of our lives instead of God, is our idol. For example...

Money - We have to have money to function in our society. Money is necessary to do the Lord's work. The problem comes in when we make money the driving force in our lives. Someone takes a job that God wouldn't be pleased with them working. Or, they are dishonest in business dealings with others to make extra money. Some work long hours to make every dollar they can to spend on their wants not their needs causing them to miss worship services and serving God.

Fame/Popularity - How many times do you see a celebrity do something sinful that gets them attention? This doesn't apply to celebrities only though. What if we go to places we shouldn't (dances, bars, drunken parties), hang out with people we shouldn't, or do sinful things just to be "popular" or approved of by the "popular" people. Sadly, adults can be just as guilty of this as kids.

Sports - There is nothing wrong with participating or watching sports. We are to keep ourselves healthy and fit to be able to worship God and do work in his service. However, some skip worship to attend/participate in sporting events or practices. Some get way too obsessed with the teams they root for by acting like a crazy person while cheering for them or getting way too upset when they lose (Ugh, that hits me pretty hard).

TV - Again, there are worthwhile shows on TV that help spread God's
word or provide entertainment. The problem comes in with watching shows that are vulgar and obscene or ridicule God,Jesus, and Christianity and its values. Some people can spend hours and hours watching TV to the detriment of doing other more positive things. I am fortunate that we don't have cable TV or I am afraid that might be me. When we were in Nashville, I spent three straight hours watching "Cash Cab".

The saddest thing of all is THE UNKNOWN GOD appears to be to a lot of people today what our Heavenly Father was then - UNKNOWN