Archive for January, 2004

Well, I already know what my favorite Superbowl commercial will be this year.

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Speaking of sanctity of life, yesterday was the 31st anniversary of Roe v. Wade. To commemorate this occasion, let’s look at a little comparison.

  Deaths (U.S. only)
Revolutionary War 4,435
Civil War (both sides) 498,332
World War I 116,708
World War II 407,316
Korea 25,604
Vietnam 58,168
Abortion (since legalized in 1973) 43,000,000+

U.S. Deaths

See Also:

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Blog? What? Oh yeah…

You may be interested in what I’ve been doing the past few weeks.

M-F, Jan 4-9 – First class of the Jan-term, “Relationships in God’s Image” with Scotty Smith. Class held all morning and afternoon.

M-F, Jan 12-16 – Second class of the Jan-term, “PCA Polity”. Class held all morning.

Sat, Jan 17 – Adult Nurture Team meeting in the morning.

Sun, Jan 18 – Presbytery-wide Sanctity of Life Sunday evening service hosted by my church. I help get everything set up all afternoon.

Tue, Jan 20 – Presbytery meeting all afternoon. Missions Team meeting in the evening.

Wed, Jan 21 – I take the PCA Polity take-home final. Staff meeting.

Then, coming up…

Tonight – Youth Group LAN party.

Monday – Registration

Tuesday – Session meeting

Wednesday – Spring semester starts. Jan-term assignments due.


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Some time ago, the power door lock on the rear passenger door of my car broke. For some reason or another, it was only working intermittently, which isn’t a very good thing for a lock to be doing. Although I almost never use that door, it unlocks with the rest when I use my remote, and I count on it locking in order to keep unauthorized people out of my car. Investigating the issue, I followed some instructions I found online to take the door panel off. Nothing looked jammed, and since the other three locks were working just fine, I figured it was just a bad motor. I wasn’t about to deal with it just then, so I packaged up the door parts, chucked the door panel in the back seat, unplugged the motor, manually locked the door, and shut it.

Lock 1Lock 2
The offending motor/lock

Now, having a mechanic fix the motor would have been an expensive proposition. The motor (actually the whole locking mechanism) costs about $70, and then there’s the ever expensive labor costs. Since I already had the door panel off, and could see that it looked like a relatively simple procedure to swap the lock out, I figured I probably could do it myself. When I went home back in the fall, I borrowed some Torx bits to get the lock out, which proved to be a rather straightforward task as I suspected. After having a mechanic confirm that it was indeed the motor that needed to be replaced, my Mom and Step-Dad picked up a lock from a junkyard for me (about $20 or so), which I brought back to St. Louis after Christmas.

Then last weekend, having come across relatively mild weather and having been recruited to pick up some kids for church, I went to work. I hooked the new lock up to the appropriate wire and hit the nearest power lock switch. It worked. Knowing that I had a functional lock in my possession, I removed the old one and replaced it with the new one. Having hooked up the power cable and all the connecting rods, I tried the power lock switch again. Again it worked, locking when I told it to lock and unlocking when I told it to unlock.

Now with my functional lock in place, I had to get the door panel back on. Unfortunately, most of the fasteners that hold the door panel had stayed on the door when I had removed the door panel, and I couldn’t yank them out with pliers without breaking them (and even then they still remained in the door, only broken). The shop manual that I had received for Christmas had a diagram showing this cool little crowbar-type device made specifically for removing the fasteners. Realizing that acquiring this device would be the key to successful reattachment of the door panel, I put all my stuff in the back seat and drove off to the auto parts store where I purchased said device. Upon returning to the apartment, I applied my new tool to the job, and it popped those fasteners out with ease.

Tool 1Tool 2
Tool 3Tool 4
The fastener removal tool

As the first drops of an approaching rain cloud fell, I slid the fasteners into the holding grooves on the door panel. After aligning the door panel on the door, I gave it a few good slaps, which popped the fasteners back into the holes from whence they had just been removed, and thus the door panel was reattached. As the rain began falling harder, I climbed into the back seat, shutting the door behind me, and I inserted the two door panel screws. Finally, after consulting with my Step-Dad over the phone, I snapped the window crank back into place, and completed the job.

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Happy New Year all! 2004 is here, and as far as I’m concerned, it’s off to a fine start. On New Year’s Eve, I was scheduled to preach at my church’s annual New Year’s Eve Communion Service. In preparation for this event, I had written a sermon on the Lord’s Supper for my preaching class last semester. Although I got a B+ on the sermon, I had only put 2 days into it, and I wasn’t satisfied with it. During my trip home for Christmas, I spent a considerable quantity of time improving the sermon. The revised version turned out much better, and went over well at the service.

After the service, rather than go across the street to Forest Park where the big St. Louis New Year bash was being held, I went to a small party at the home of the McGarrys. This turned out to be a wise decision, since the organizers of the events at the park had planned on 25,000 people and 3-4x as many showed up. Needless to say, it was a mess over there, and I was glad to avoid it. Anyway, the party with the McGarrys was the expected subdued yet fun affair featuring a variety of cheeses, people I’ve never met before, a quick round of Taboo, an appearance by the other Steve Jam(i)eson, and a screening of Airplane 2.

And then there was the pickled herring. Amongst the wide variety of cheeses I noticed a bowl of gray matter that appeared to have a fishy texture. Upon inquiring what it was, Jessica challenged me to eat it before being informed of its identity. And just to prove that it was safe, she placed a piece of the mystery matter on a cracker and consumed it. Nevertheless, I declined for the moment. Later in the evening however, the challenge came up again. Despite having discovered that the substance at hand was pickled herring, I agreed to give it a try. Feeling like I was on “Fear Factor”, I took a bite from the chunk of the repellent smelling fish on cracker that I had been given. For the first nanosecond of mastication it was tolerable, but soon my taste-buds began to rebel against this foul fish. My face contorted in many strange ways as I chewed and fought the urge to puke. After I managed to swallow the small bite, I immediately downed a can of soda to wash away the revolting aftertaste. Jessica can keep her pickled herring. As for me, I have a new rule: If it looks nasty and smells nasty, by no means am I to put it in my mouth!

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