Showing posts from February, 2008

Sports: Rip 'em Eaters, zot, zot, zot!

Patrick Sanders came up big in as UCI wins 64-57 over Long Beach State.

However, Anteater fans await word on Michael Hunter who left the game late with an injury.

Next up Cal State Northridge, the top dog of the Big West!

Technology: Skynet just around the corner?

Oh my, robot killing machines!

When I saw the article, immediately thought of Skynet from the Terminator movies!


LA Scene: $5.5 million and 256 synced signal lights

Will the commute get better?

City officials are betting yes with $5.5 million of our tax dollars. They've synced 256 traffic signals between Wilshire and Hollywood boulevards, and La Cienega Boulevard and Western Avenue, My Fox LA reports. That'll translate to a 15% reduction (am I alone in thinking, that's it? 15%?) in travel time.

Hope so!

Science: Neat stuff being worked on at UCLA - crystals that absorb CO2!

CO2 levels are rising these days. Whether it will result in the drastic consequences predicted by some global warming models is unclear.

One technology is to capture CO2.

LA Scene: Dudamel, next LA Phil music director, on 60 Minutes

Saw some clips of the conducting prodigy that the LA Phil is bringing in. I guess 60 Minutes posts clips after or before they air an episode?

Anyway, am looking forward to seeing him in action!

Life: 26.2 and the bonds that form

7 years ago I jogged 26.2 miles in Los Angeles in a tad over 6 hours. It was a wonderful experience!

Seeing the city from ground level, chatting with people I trained with and talking to total strangers was a pleasure and crossing the finish line a thrill!

One of the friends I gained from that experience many years ago is running yet again (she has participated in many, many, many of these events all over the USA) and what is special this year is that her daughter will be running as well ... somewhere on this big blue planet ... confused?

See this story.

Go Dawn and Go Jessica!

Sports: Big West Basketball

Big West Basketball is pretty typical mid-major stuff. Only one team is likely to get into the NCAA and most players will not be making a living playing ball when they finish college. Nonetheless, since I went to graduate school at UC Irvine, I have some rooting interest in this mid-major conference.

This year is actually an up year for the Big West as two of the teams have gained some attention and will be televised in Bracket Buster Weekend.

CAL STATE NORTHRIDGE is 18-6, 10-2 in the Big West and will play Rider.

UC SANTA BARBARA is 20-6 and 9-4 in the Big West and will play former Big West menace Utah State.

My Anteaters are in the middle of the Big West in 5th place 6-6 in conference play and 11-14 overall.

Tonight, they play Idaho in a non-ESPN televised part of the Bracket Buster Weekend.

Go 'Eaters, zot, zot, zot!

UPDATE: The Big West went 4-5 this weekend. The Anteaters win! I went down to the Bren to see the game and finally got to see the Anteaters win while I was in the bu…

Devotional Thoughts: the way to wisdom

Job continues his monologue ...

Gold and silver are mined,
then purified;
the same is done
with iron and copper.
Miners carry lanterns
deep into the darkness
to search for these metals.
They dig tunnels
in distant, unknown places,
where they dangle by ropes.
Far beneath the grain fields,
fires are built
to break loose those rocks
that have jewels or gold.
Miners go to places unseen
by the eyes of hawks;
they walk on soil unknown
to the proudest lions.
With their own hands
they remove sharp rocks
and uproot mountains.
They dig through the rocks
in search of jewels
and precious metals.
They also uncover
the sources of rivers and discover secret places.

I confess, the image that came to mind is the dwarves of the Lord of the Rings!

image source:

But where is wisdom found?
No human knows the way.
Nor can it be discovered
in the deepest sea.
It is worth much more
than silver or pure gold
or precious stones.
Nothing is its equal--
not gold or costly glass.

Elsewhere: Some offline friends online at Blogspot

Inside a Random Mind offers up observations on the passing scene of life and culture. Melissa introduced our youth group to the Lifehouse Everything Skit. Excerpt of her reflections on that skit:

But this one touched me on a such a deep level. I felt the Lord truly grab onto my heart and reasure me that it belonged to Him. It was like watching every aspect and phase of my life being performed before me, it was scary. Not only did I see that, but I felt like I was also watching those phases of my life from Jesus' perspective - and what He was going through at the same times. Trying to get my attention when I wondered, trying to win me back, fighting to get me back, battling what I could no longer handle when my strength was completely drained.. still He was there fighting for me.

Jason is blogging up a storm over at Obediently Authentic. Looks like the memes being discussed come from a class on Christianity and contemporary culture. Here is an example:

Is home constituted as a p…

World: Kosovo Independence Stirs Protests

The US Embassy in Belgrade Serbia has been attacked and set afire.

World War I started because of a Serbian assassinated Archduke Ferdinand of Austria in the city Sarajavo.

The region has known turmoil for a long time.

Where do we stand now?

The ball is in the Serbian court. They are making lots of noise about Kosovo Independence because Kosovo has historic significance to the Serbians but their ethnic group accounts for only a small percentage of that region's population.

The question is whether their protestations will take the form of military action to regain control of the area.

If they make that move then the ball will be in the court of the rest of Europe: will they intervene to stop such a military action.

If they opt to stop such a drive by the Serbians the ball will be in Russia's court: will they back the Serbians?

If the Russians get involved, what will the USA do?

One must hope we don't wind up with a world war over this but it was a sequence of action and reaction …

Politics: McCain's speech after the Maryland, Virginia and DC primaries

In 2000, I heard McCain speak at a rally in Los Angeles. His biography earns him a hearing. Though he may not deliver the best of speeches, one cannot help but feel that what he says is what he means.

I looked over his recent speech he gave in Arlington Virginia. Here are some excerpts:

We do not yet know for certain who will have the honor of being the Democratic Party's nominee for President. But we know where either of their candidates will lead this country, and we dare not let them. They will promise a new approach to governing, but offer only the policies of a political orthodoxy that insists the solution to government's failures is to simply make it bigger.

When it is distilled down, McCain hits the key difference between the two parties.

Obama may be eloquent and speak of change but is there much difference between his positions and the bulk of the Democratic party in the Congress?

UPDATE: Check out these liberal/conservative ratings summaries from the Electoral-vote.c…

Youth: Clip of Lifehouse's Everything Skit

Saw this at youth group on Sunday!

Very moving musical skit illustrating how we can be drawn away from God by what the world has to offer and then in our despair we can reach for Jesus and he will reach for us.

Sports: Clip about Coach Wooden

Leaders and molders of people can be found in many places and certainly Coach Wooden's impact was more than just on the basketball court.

He is 97 and none of us knows how much time he has left but his life is being celebrated and certainly will be rightly remembered after he leaves his time on earth.

Politics: Bush 43 popular in Africa

Bush is in Africa.


Although many Africans, especially Muslims, share negative perceptions of Bush's foreign policy with other parts of the world, there is widespread recognition of his successful humanitarian and health initiatives on the continent.
Bush has stressed new-style partnerships with Africa based on trade and investment and not purely on aid handouts.

His Millennium Challenge Corp. rewards countries that continue to satisfy criteria for democratic governance, anti-corruption and free-market economic policies.

Bush signed the largest such deal, for $698 million, with Kikwete on Sunday.

Because of the U.S. anti-malaria program, 5 percent of patients tested positive for the disease on the offshore islands of Zanzibar in 2007 compared to 40 percent three years earlier, the Tanzanian leader said.

Bush's legacy in Africa would be saving the lives of hundreds of thousands of mothers and children who would otherwise have died from malaria or AIDS and enabling millio…

LA Scene: Melting pot, mosaic, whatever you want to call it

If you heard the name Leila Feinstein and didn't know she was a reporter for KTLA, what would you think she would look like?

To read about her go here and here.

If you heard the name Jennifer Bjorklund and didn't know she was a reporter for KNBC, what would you think she would look like?

To read about her go here and here.

I don't know about you but when I saw their surnames and on news broadcast, I couldn't figure out what their ethnic backgrounds were!

And you know what, maybe that is a good thing?!

Only in LA?

Politics: Flashback ... McCain campaign of 2000

Eight years ago, I supported McCain in the GOP primary in California. Here are some of my old photos from an event in Los Angeles I was able to attend.

"We're going to beat Al Gore like a drum!"

Supporters listening at the Puente Learning Center rally.

LA County Sheriff, Lee Baca endorses McCain.

Telling the truth, what the people want from their politicians.

Sen. McCain addresses the crowds in Los Angeles rally. Also on stage (l to r): Sheriff Baca, Mrs. Baca and Mrs. McCain.

This year, I supported Romney for the California primary. Alas, two days later, Romney suspended his campaign when McCain won many more delegates on Super Duper Tuesday. Today, Romney is endorsing McCain for the Presidency.

I look forward to finding some avenues to support the McCain campaign!

Theology: PTI -- Evangelicalism's meaning; Worship thoughts

Since I don't have cable TV, I have only seen bits of ESPN's PTI (Pardon the Interruption) when I've been traveling or visiting people who have cable TV.

Anyway, in that show, two sports writers give a quick opinion on some top sports subject of the day.

Don't have a partner in crime to do a blog version of theological PTI but I figure I'll dive in anyway with some occasional quick hits on some theology subject I'm baking in my mind.

The constraint is that I give myself a mere 5 minutes to write on the subject.

What does being an "evangelical" mean as I understand it?

I think this flavor of Christianity places a high emphasis on the Bible. There is an intramural disagreement on whether the Bible is inerrant or is it infallible. I suspect those who are Christians who don't call themselves evangelicals don't have this discussion about the nature of the Bible.

I think another aspect of this stream of faith is the importance of a person making a …

Politics: Romney bows out

Romney suspends his campaign.

As a businessman used to weighing the cost-benefit of a decision, he knew his time was up. Alas, in politics, one needs a certain amount of ego to make a go of it and sometimes because of that it can be hard to throw in the towel.

However, between Romney's good sense and probably the good sense of his family and advisers, they decided that exiting sooner rather than later was better.

Huckabee is now in the same position of having to examine the cost-benefit of going onward.

As a center-right blogger, I've been sympathetic to the Romney campaign and the concerns some have about McCain.

Nonetheless, I voted for McCain in the Cal primary in 2000 so I will be supportive of his campaign in 2008 going forward.

UPDATE: Text of Romney CPAC speech.

Link to video of concluding remarks at CPAC.

Politics: Huge turnout today

Went to my polling place this AM.

Turnout was HUGE!

The lines were longer for the Governor Gray Davis recall election but today's lines were longer than any other election in recent memory since I've moved into my current neighborhood.

Politics: Super Duper Tuesday

Poll round-up on GOP side.

21 states.

I don't know how many states Romney needs to win for their brain trust to conclude they should keep going.

Certainly, an upset win in California would probably indicate some GOP "buyer's remorse" over McCain. A loss in California would probably cap a night of losses throughout the country.

Where Romney might win:
North Dakota

Where Romney should win:

Another thing to watch is how Huckabee does in the South. If his voters stand by their man and they wind up collecting more delegates than Romney on Super Duper Tuesday then Romney is finished.

Democratic tallies.

22 states.

The drama for this voter is that in both races, California is close!

On the Democrat side, if Clinton holds onto California then she probably goes onto the nomination pretty easily as the bubble for Obama burst. If Obama takes it, then the magic carpet ride continues and its an indication of a tide of history that …

Culture: Super Bowl 42 -- Giants 17 Patriots 14

A truly SUPER bowl game that came down to two dramatic late 4th quarter drives!


Politics: Feb 5 state wide ballot measures