Tuesday, January 31, 2006


Dies the Fire by S. M. Stirling - The Change, a mysterious event, renders all electricity and explosives useless. From this apocalyptic event rise the survivors, an eclectic group of folks who start a new society based on concepts from the Middle Ages. But there are other survivors, those who are bent on conquering the world and forming it in their own twisted image.
This is a pretty straightforward apocalyptic tale. I enjoyed it though. At times, it did drag and the whole Wiccan community/religion thing got on my nerves a time or two, but all in all it was worth the read.

Monday, January 30, 2006

Wedding Update

Well, things are certainly coming together. Since Sarah and I met online, it seems only appropriate that we make most of our arrangements online. I booked the honeymoon today (4 nights in Orlando) and we got our wedding bands. The internet...sheesh! Beyond that, other stuff is falling together. Pretty good crowd coming from out of town. Randy's officiating, Charity is singing, Debbie is playing...it's all falling into place. So...less than 3 weeks from now there will be a Mr. & Mrs. Marty Gordon. Wow!

Tuesday, January 24, 2006

Beautiful Day in the Neighborhood

It's a beautiful day here in Seattle. I drove to West Seattle to visit my stuff in storage and the drive back was magnificent. Mt. Rainier was out but very hazy. The mountains across the sound were dazzling...very clear and snow covered. I was wishing for a camera.

Monday, January 23, 2006


Sarah and I have been talking a lot lately about the current state of the church and our individual crises of faith. Sarah is much more patient than I about all the crap that is done in the name of God. I get so mad that God allows this crap to go on and on and on. Then Sarah explained that it will always be this way because we are all full of sin. Then I talk about how stupid people are to follow anything and everything that's floating around out there. Sarah then explains to me that people are like lemmings. (Although Jesus called them sheep, another dumb animal) Lemmings follow each other off a cliff in mass numbers, killing themselves. (There is some debate to whether this is true or not) People do this too. They follow each other, searching for the truth. Some find it, others do not. Many are like the lemmings. They are following a lie to their eventual deaths. Paul talked about this in Ephesians.
"Then we will no longer be infants, tossed back and forth by the waves, and blown here and there by every wind of teaching and by the cunning and craftiness of men in their deceitful scheming." (Eph. 4:14)
I wish God would explain to me why he allows false teachers to thrive. Until he does, at least I have Sarah to calm me down.

Wednesday, January 18, 2006

American Idol and the Church

I just finished reading an entry by one of my fellow bloggers about American Idol and it has inspired me. I love American Idol. Sometimes I hate to admit it but it's true. I love sitting through the performances to see if the truly talented person will win out in the end. But my favorite part is the auditions. I love seeing the unwashed masses turn out for a chance at glory. I love seeing the deluded make fools of themselves. I especially love to see Simon blow the rejects out of the water. Why? Why am I like this? I think it's because of the church.
I grew up a nice, proper Southern Baptist boy. Our services were full to the brim with pseudo-southern gospel music and fire and brimstone preaching. Nearly every Sunday, we were blessed with a solo or two from the good folks in the choir. One or two of these good folks were talented. The rest were not. On a semi-regular basis we were assailed with the sounds of screeching Tammy Faye wannabes or men who sounded like they swallowed Elmer's Glue. It was bad. As I got older, I learned that it's not easy to say no to church folks. Miss Bobby Jo sings because she asked to sing and her husband gives a substantial amount of money to the softball fund. Mister Lee and his lovely life Wynona sing because he is a deacon and someone from their family has been a member of this church since it's inception in the late 1800's. As you can see, no is not a word that is used often in the church, especially when it comes to dealing with tithers and founders.
In my experiences as a layman and a minister, things are getting better in some areas these days. Some churches are more devoted to excellence than they once were. But there are still those holdovers who let Billy Joe Jim Bob sing a solo because his daddy is the chairman of the Personnel Committee. And we just can' t tick him off, now can we.

Tuesday, January 17, 2006

You Might Be From the Pacific NW if...

You know the state flower (Mildew)
You feel guilty throwing aluminum cans or paper in the trash.
Use the statement “sun break” and know what it means.
You know more than 10 ways to order coffee.
You know more people who own boats than air conditioners.
You feel overdressed wearing a suit to a nice restaurant.
You stand on a deserted corner in the rain waiting for the “Walk” Signal. (ours say “swim”)
You consider that if it has no snow or has not recently erupted,it is not a real mountain.
You can taste the difference between Starbucks, Seattle’s Best,and Veneto’s.
You know the difference between Chinook, Coho, and Sockeye Salmon.
You know how to pronounce Sequim, Puyallup, Issaquah, Oregon,Yakima, and Willamette.
You consider swimming an indoor sport.
You can tell the difference between Japanese, Chinese, Korean,Vietnamese and Thai food.
In winter, you go to work in the dark and come home in thedark-while only working eight-hour days.
You never go camping without waterproof matches and a poncho.
You are not fazed by “Today’s forecast: showers followed byrain,” and “Tomorrow’s forecast: rain followed by showers.” [Olympia’s weather ]
You have no concept of humidity without precipitation.
You know that Boring is a town in Oregon and not just a state of mind.
You can point to at least two volcanoes, even if you cannot see through the cloud cover.
You notice, “The mountain is out!” when it is a pretty day and you can actually see it.
You put on your shorts when the temperature gets above 50, but still wear your hiking boots and parka.
You switch to your sandals when it gets about 60, but keep the socks on.
You have actually used your mountain bike on a mountain.
You think people who use umbrellas are either wimps or tourists.
You buy new sunglasses every year, because you cannot find the old ones after such a long time.
You measure distance in hours.
You often switch from “heat” to “a/c” in the same day.
You design your kid’s Halloween costume to fit under a raincoat.
You know all the important seasons: Almost Winter, Winter, Still Raining (Spring), Road Construction (Summer), Deer & Elk Season(Fall).
You actually understood these jokes and will probably forward them.

Having lived in the Pacific NW since June of 2005, I have learned that these are so very true. Apparently, Jeff Foxworthy is tuned in to more than just the redneck culture.

A Job

After months of intentionally seeking a job, one has fallen into my lap. The theatre where Sarah works needs a new custodian and they asked me to do it. For right now, it's perfect. Sarah agrees that a part-time job is okay for me right now. It gives us enough to survive on and it gives me time to concentrate on my art and writing. Perhaps it will also give me the freedom to try and figure out what the future holds for me as a career. I suppose ministry is still an option but I believe it will have to be something other than church work. The church is so messed up these days and it's only getting worse.

Monday, January 16, 2006

Lost and Clueless

Found this on my friend Mark's blog. I am placing it here so I will be sure to read it from time to time.

"My Lord God, I have no idea where I am going.

I do not sense the road ahead of me.
Nor do I really know myself,
And the fact that I think I am following your will
Does not mean that I am actually doing so.
But I believe that the desire to please you
Does in fact please you.

And I hope that I will never do anything apart from that desire.
And I know that if I do this,
You will lead me by the right road
Though I may know nothing about it.

Therefore will I trust you always,
Though I may seem to be lost and in the shadow of death.
I will not fear, for you are ever with me,
And you will never leave me to face my struggles alone."
~Thomas Merton, 1915-1968

Thursday, January 12, 2006


The Visitation by Frank Peretti - I generally don't like Christian fiction but I am a fan of Peretti's and Sarah had this one on the shelf so I thought I'd give it a go. It's a good one. In the book, a small town preacher in Washington State loses his faith and his pulpit after the death of his wife. A false messiah takes up residence in town and everyone is shaken to the core of their beliefs.
There's a lot of truth in this book even though it's fiction. I particularly enjoyed the main characters flashbacks to his growth in faith and ministry. Peretti certainly steps on a lot of feet when it comes to portraying the local church. None of these things happened to me exactly but things like them have happened to me. Everything in this book could be based on truth Peretti heard about church life somewhere. He's just changed the names to protect the sinners.
So, on a fiction, intrigue level...it's a good book. On relating truth through fiction, it's a winner.

Tuesday, January 10, 2006

Hell-o Satan!

Those folks at Landover Baptist Church are at it again. They crack me up with their parody of a mega-church in America. When I worked at AC Moore, we used to sell "Hello Kitty" merchandise but I always just drew horns on her and called her "Hell Kitty." This is just as good.

Thursday, January 05, 2006

Writing Helps

Just bought a book that is helping me get my writing back on track. It's called "The Write Brain Workbook" by Bonnie Neubauer. It's filled with writing prompts but the cool thing that I like about it is that it is also filled with visually captivating pages that help prompt you as well.
I also own "The Writer's Block" by Jason Rekulak. I like it as well.
On my list to get is "The Writer's Book of Matches." I need all the help I can get. My writing has been suffering of late and I needed a jump start.

Wednesday, January 04, 2006

Happy New Year?

Man, I'm tired of people asking me if I had a good New Year. It just started. I know...I know. They want to know if I had a good holiday but they should rephrase the question. The new year has just started and I don't know if it's gonna be a good one or not. I hope it will be. Here are some things that will happen or need to happen this year.
- Sarah and I are getting married on Feb. 19th. It's going to be a great union despite the challenges that face us. She loves me. I love her. We are soulmates. I look forward to our future together.
- I need a freakin' job. I'm tired of looking around for crappy jobs and temporary stuff. I want something permanent that won't bore me to tears. Something fun and challenging would be nice.
- I'm trying to get my writing back on track. I've been doing okay on the visual art thing but not writing so much. I really need to get a laptop and that will happen when the funds emerge. I just need to find time each day to write, do visual art, or both.
Well, that's all I can think of right now. Pretty simple really. 2006...be good to me!