25 December 2007

Merry Christmas

We are in Utah so we missed the 12"+ dump of snow at our house (darn, I could have made fresh tracks off the porch!) but I thought this was a great picture courtesy of my neighbor.

13 December 2007


You may think that because it's the off season from bike racing that 179 signifies what my weight has escalated to since the race season ended. Ha, you are wrong. The competition shall cry when they find out that is not the truth. Actually 179 is the heart rate that I had to hit yesterday on my training ride when I was visciously chased by two dogs while riding on Washougal River Road. I pride myself in my ability to control my heart rate under any circumstance in my off season training but yesterday that became an impossibility when two barking dogs came tearing out of a driveway. The road I was on was flat to maybe slightly uphill, so I had a disadvantage. I had to sprint as hard as I could to get away from them, which is hard when you actually haven't sprinted in a few months. They were gaining on me and I could see a hill up ahead, I thought I was doomed. I can honestly say that sprinting when something is chasing you is a lot more interesting that sprinting for the finish line. I think it was one of my best sprints ever, even with the yelling and screaming at the dogs to try to scare them away (which didn't work). Needless too say, I think I have a good mental vision of what I need to sprint like to win a race. Maybe this was a good thing for me.

05 December 2007

Golden Compass Chaos

I was really trying to keep my mouth shut about this, but there has been so much media hype over these books and movie that I just can't stand it anymore. I am sure that a lot of people are going to think I am a heathen, or at least crazy, but I don't really care (I know I'm crazy).

I have read all three of the books in the series and I plan on seeing the movie. No, I won't let Lander see it because it's rated PG-13 and he is 6. Yes, the author is a proclaimed atheist (so are most scientists, but I don't see anyone boycotting science). I guess he must certainly have some hidden agenda in trying to brainwash the children of the world with anti-Christian ideals. I think not. I think the big problem here is people trying to twist and read way too much into the plot of this story. The book is fiction, it was written for kids. Not to mention the fact that you can pretty much extract any religious meaning you want from any fantasy book you read (The Lord of the Rings, The Lion the Witch and the Wardrobe, The Dark is Rising). I read the email that is being circulated about why you and your family should not see this movie and it is riddled with misinformation about what actually occurs in the book. I am certain the person who wrote that email didn't even read the books and has absolutely no clue what they are talking about.

As far all the conjecture about what was the author's intent was with these books, it's exactly that, speculation. I don't know and I don't care. After reading the books I personally feel that the author was really trying to express his opinion that any religion or organization that promotes blind faith, oppression (think Crusades), unlawful power and fearful submission (again, The Crusades) is bad. Hmmm, I would have to agree with him on that one. Of course this is just MY interpretation.

I guess what it comes down to is this, people will always view things from the perspective of their value system. The author was recently interviewed by Al Roker on NBC. Al asked him directly what he thought about his books being viewed as anti-Christian. His reply was that he would "mistrust people that tell us how we should understand something" and that he supports "democracy of reading" where we are free to interpret things for ourselves. Sad as it is, I think there are some people and organizations that are worried about free-thinking and people forming their own opinions.

So, I am not saying that you have to read the books or see the movie. Please, just don't jump on the bandwagon of mindless misinformation, use the mind you have and form your own opinions.

Okay, off my soapbox now. Here are the first 5 minutes of the movie if you dare.