Monthly Archives: October 2007

‘Tis the Season to be Fire-y

Yes, Ladies and Gentlemen, it is that season again. While it may be autumn in the rest of the northern hemisphere, it is Fire Season here in gritty, smoky, Southern California.
Add one part super dry land due to the driest year on record
Add one part Santa Ana winds
Add one part arson or human error or a downed power line
And within the course of 24 hours one can have 12 fires, count ’em 12, in Southern California!
The LA Times has made a Google Fire map with a current listing of the fires. The nice folks over at the Earth Observatory have once again provided a 2 times daily satellite shot of SoCal in all of its smoke plumed glory. Waiting for the FireMapper folks to get their aircraft up, so that they can document the current round of fires.
While the air quality is quite low here in Seal / Long Beach area, it is nothing like the folks up in the Castaic area or in San Diego where 250,000 folks are being evacuated.
If you are not in a fire zone or being evacuated, the authorities are asking folks to stay inside due to air quality and keep cell / mobile phone usage down as to be able to free up the networks for emergency work.

The Church of Krista

Death Valley Sky with the Milky Way
” A Dark Sky Over Death Valley ” – Photo by Dan Duriscoe, U.S. National Park Service

Amongst several of my “Recovering Evangelical” friends we have a running joke that we now attend the Church of Krista. Ever since I hit my personal wall of dealing with religious institutions in late 2004 / early 2005, I have been searching for clear, equitable voices on faith and religion. In 2005, while driving to the market one Sunday afternoon, I heard the Speaking of Faith public radio show on KPCC.
Most Sunday afternoons, I am not near a radio, so I have taken to listening to Speaking of Faith on podcast and truly appreciated the show’s far ranging points of view. I have learned about faiths and perspectives that I had not been exposed to before, as well as being reminded of author’s who I would like to read their books. Most of all, while I walk through the valley of questions and exploration, I appreciate the company.
In today’s podcast on “Beyond the Atheism-Religion Divide“, Krista delivered:

“I haven’t interviewed Richard Dawkins or Christopher Hitchens, for the same reason I never interviewed Jerry Falwell, which is he had all the answers for himself and everyone else.” – Krista Tippett

Recently, a few friends who I greatly respect have become devotees to the Cult of Dawkins. What I have read from Richard Dawkins and Christopher Hitchens has been just as definitively dogmatic and toxic as anything spewed out of the mouths of James Dobson or Tim LeHaye.
To this end, I am very surprised that my friends are falling for this style of atheism that is verging or already verged on dogmatism. If you are going to be a devotee, why not pick Sam Harris who at least can laugh at himself, point out various perspectives and encourage the faithful to consider how atheism can fulfill or at least consider the spiritual?
Folks, modernism is over, we are now in the digital age of multiple connections and convergences, why do we still feel the need for apologetics and dogma? Can we not have discussion and community? How about Open Discussion and Thought 2.0?

Maggie and Joe at Bowling

Tues 10.16.07 – Tonight our team, the One Pin, played against the Bowling Stones in the Alex’s Bar Bowling League. Yes, somehow a bunch of us loosely related to Alex’s have managed to show ourselves up at the Valley View AMF Bowling Lanes every Tuesday evening for a real live organized league.
A few non-Alex’s Bar teams are in our league to round us up to 12 teams and these folks are WAY TOO SERIOUS. You would think that bowling was something other than to have a good laugh at. Really.
So far Joe, Maggie, Jim, and Jana of the Bowling Stones have been my favorite team to play with. We all had fun, we all cheered each other, and no one was too serious or took smoking breaks that lasted forever. The Bowling Stones were a delight. Thanks!