Archive for September, 2006

XXXchurch and a Pornographer’s Conversion

September 30th, 2006 9 comments

A while back I posted Bible: The Porn Star Edition about how I had some doubts about the use of the XXXchurch‘s Bible cover. While, I still have my doubts about that, I know that the need for the XXXchurch is real and that their ministry is important.

While reading Kevin Cawley’s blog I came across his post XXXChurch & Donny Pauling’s Conversion and saw that their mission does actually reach people.

x3blog (the XXXchurch’s blog) has posted Introducing Donny Pauling. Donny Pauling is a prominent pornographer that has shot more than half a million pictures for the porn industry. That post had this to say:

Well… God will do what He will do. On Monday of this week Donovan, real name Donny Pauling asked Christ into his life, and Christ obliged and Donny responded! Donavan called us a few weeks back telling us he wanted to leave porn and do something else. He said he was not ready to come to Christ and still has a lot of doubts. We continued to talk and send emails back and forth. I read in James it says �If you know people who have wandered off from God�s truth don�t write them off. Go after them. Get them back and you will have rescued precious lives from destruction. Donavan called Monday and he said, I gave up Craig. God�s came running.

It goes on to quote from Pauling’s blog post from the other day “I’m Out, But the Blog Abides!“:

I’ve always questioned the faith my father tried to teach me. There are so many things about Christianity that just make no sense to me. Right here in this blog you’ve seen me ridicule various aspects of it. But, like many of you probably do, I still pray from time to time. It just feels good once in awhile, doesn’t it? Even if you’re not entirely sure anyone’s listening. It’s a psychological thing, ya know?

This past week I finally decided to stop fighting some of the turmoil�s I’ve had inside. I prayed the following prayer, almost word-for-word:

“God, you know that I have trouble believing the sacrifice was ever truly made. But I want to accept it anyway and hope that you somehow help me reconcile those doubts. I’m inviting you back into my life.”

How about that? Interesting story, eh? Very cool I think! I imagine that is a difficult thing for Pauling to do. Porn paid his bills, now it won’t. Praying for him and the XXXchurch would be appropriate I think.

Categories: Around the World, Religion Tags:

Swedish Chef Videos! B�rk! B�rk! B�rk!

September 29th, 2006 No comments

Kristin has pointed to a veritable sm�rg�sbord (so to speak) of Swedish Chef video clips! I especially enjoyed his salad making skills.

An intorduction to Swedish notes that pronunciation is fairly curcial, “otherwise you might end up sounding disquietingly like the Swedish Chef in the Muppet Show” (via Swedish Chef at Wikipedia). Gee, I thought he sounded pretty good!

Categories: Daily Life Tags:

Eats, Shoots and Leaves

September 28th, 2006 19 comments

Eats, Shoots and Leaves: The Zero Tolerance Approach to Punctuation by Lynne TrussAfter I finally finished Lewis’ That Hideous Strength (which I still need to do a post on. EDIT: done), I read my aunt Jill’s selection for this year’s Family Book and CD/DVD exchange (of which I have done a VERY poor job of writing about this year): Eats, Shoots & Leaves: The Zero Tolerance Approach to Punctuation by Lynne Truss. While I have never been much of a writer (I didn’t have to write too much as a Physics and Astronomy major), I started to read more in college and as I had to write much more at Regent College, language and its use and function become more interesting to me. That being the case, this book was a fun (and pretty quick) read!

My only real qualm with the book is that now my friend Greg cannot tell the joke (the Panda one) nearly as often… and he told it really well (I will attempt to reproduce it at the end of this post; but will not do it the justice it deserves and that Greg provides).

While I think that some take punctuation way too seriously - “sticklers” as they are called - after reading numerous poorly written blogs, I will gladly side with the sticklers when it comes to language and the written word. (And not to appear too hypocritical, I do recognize that I am horrible at spelling and do have numerous writing flaws. Now that that is out of the way, onward!) Truss is quite excited about punctuation and is able to share that in a humorous way. Let me share a number of those places with you.

Read more…

I Turned 10,000!

September 27th, 2006 2 comments

Yes it is true. Sadly, I actually missed the day. Technically, I turned 10,000 on Monday the 25th. I was going to be upset that people missed my birthday, but I guess since I missed it, I shouldn’t expect anyone else to remember it! If you wanted to buy me a present for turning 10,000, those new iPod Nanos are looking pretty good!

Makes me feel old! Heh. :)

Categories: Daily Life Tags:

Lower Falls on Lewis River

September 27th, 2006 6 comments

Lower Falls
Originally uploaded by mattithyahu.

Lower Falls
Originally uploaded by mattithyahu.

When my family and I were camping at Swift Reservoir a week or so ago we also took a trip up to Lower Falls on Lewis River (which is the river the feeds Swift). Lower Falls has a campground as well has trails to hike on with various vantages of the waterfalls. It is a beautiful area and if you dare the freezing cold water you can walk out onto the falls themselves.

If you have the chance I highly recommend checking the natural beauty out. It makes for a nice day trip as well, just bring a picknick!

For more pictures, see my Flickr set: Lower Falls on Lewis River. For other pictures from the camping trip, you can either see my Swift Reservoir Camping Trip blog post or the Flickr set: Camping at Swift Reservoir 2006.

Categories: Daily Life, Photoblog Tags:

Space Saturday XXIII

September 23rd, 2006 5 comments

It has been a while since I have done a Space Saturday post, but I am back. With all the excitement going on in our Solar System, I bring you Space Saturday: the Dwarf Planet Pluto Edition!

Source. Credit: NASA, ESA, H. Weaver (JHU/APL), A. Stern (SwRI), and the HST Pluto Companion Search Team. Pluto and moons without labels.

There still seems to be a lot of confusion going on surrounding Pluto being reclassified as a “dwarf planet”, so I thought I would try and help clear things up (there will be some repeat of information from previous posts, sorry!). There are often new discoveries in our Solar System and those objects need to be classified somehow. Two objects, Ceres and Eris (formerly nicknamed Xena), didn’t fit with the standard definition of asteroid (or other Solar System object). The IAU (International Astronomical Union) ( “Its mission is to promote and safeguard the science of astronomy in all its aspects through international cooperation.” - they classify things) met to decided, among other things, how these objects would be defined. During the course of this discussion it became clear that the definition of planet needed to be nailed down. Either Ceres and Eris would be allowed to become planets (along with 50+ more down the road) or they needed to be classified as something else. When Ceres and Eris were fit into the category of “dwarf planet” it seemed that Pluto fit with them and not with the new definition of planet.

This is how the IAU has defined a planet (as described in Resolution 5.1):

5.1) A Planet is a celestial body that
5.1.a) is in orbit around the sun,
5.1.b) has sufficient mass for its self-gravity to overcome rigid body forces so that it assumes a hydrostatic equilibrium (nearly round) shape, and
5.1.c) has cleared the neighborhood around its orbit.

Pluto fails criterion 5.1.c in that there are many “plutinos” in its orbit. For a nice visual on this, see this image of Trans-Neptunian Objects. All the red dots are plutinos. For Pluto to be classified as a planet it must get rid of all those objects. Hope this helps!

The Hubble image of Pluto shows its three moons. Charon is the largest (at just over half the size of Pluto [about 1200km compared to Pluto's 2300km diameter]) and is sometimes considered a dual (dwarf) planet because Pluto’s mass is only a factor of 10 larger (the barycenter [center of mass] is actually outside of Pluto). Nix and Hydra are the other two, much smaller (around 45km in diameter), satellites of Pluto which were discovered in June of 2005.

Let me know if you have any questions! See two of my other posts for additional information: Pluto is Not a Planet (a look at the reasons why Pluto is not a planet [and the reasons that have nothing to do with the reclassification]) and 134340 Pluto (a look at the new classifications and names for the dwarf planets and their companions). Also, read NASA�s Chief Historian Steven J. Dick’s article “Pluto, Classification and Exploration” for a nice summary.

Check out my Space Saturday Archive for more astronomy stuff!

Wikipedia - Pluto
Wikipedia - Dwarf Planet
HubbleSite - Pluto’s Two Small Moons Officially Named Nix and Hydra
International Astronomical Union
IAU’s Minor Planet Center
NASA - Pluto: Facts & Figures
The Nine Eight Planets - Pluto
New Horizons - NASA’s Pluto-Kupier Belt mission

Categories: Science Tags: