Tuesday, March 30, 2004

Howdy all! Take a look the standings in the AL East, the Yankees are in last and the Devil Rays in first. Ok, it won't last, but I like the look of it.

Let me start by dusting off the ole Stetson and raising it high in a tip the hat to a very awesome young lady, a remarkable young woman, and one of my closest and dearest friends...Amanda has a blog. The link is over on the right, so go check it out....if you don't I will hunt you down and make you watch "Gods and Generals" with me non stop for a day with no bathroom breaks! Truly though, Amanda is the sweetest girl I know, she is very smart and has a lot of interesting things to say and talk about over there, so go check her out.....ok that sounded so bad...but I will let it remain, she'll understand... I hope.

The blog looks a bit different, I've made some changes, both for a change and because of problems I was having with the older template. To the right, I have added and will continue to be adding links to some of my favorite web sites.

So today, I worked all day. I've been working on 3-D wire mesh models of a chromium contaminated river in the eastern US that is being cleaned up. The program I am using, Surfer, is so dang cool! Now that I have a good grasp of it, I am loving it. It's tough to explain, but simple we can plot distance from the shore, depth below the sediment surface and level of contamination in a 3D, color coded, wire mesh plot.

The weather today was absolutely fabulouso. I was inside for most of it, but what time I did spend outdoors was great. I was actually awake at 6 AM, heard the birds singing me a morning serenade outside my window as the sun was coming up. So I caught the end of the game in Japan on ESPN 2 and had breakfast.

I got home tonight, chatted on IM with Amanda, who told me about her blog and her great day (go read about it) and my Mom, turns out Candy (my almost 14 year old puppy) bit the head off her stuffed squirrel (not a trophy stuffed, just a stuffed animal) and my Nana had to sew it back on). Funny stuff.

I also worked more on preparing my notes for the Men's Bible study on Thrusday night. It has fallen to me this week to lead us and we are still working are way through Ephesians. This week scheduled to be covered is 2:11-22. I've never lead a Bible study before, so it should be interesting. I am just preparing my notes and trusting in the LORD to guide me and the guys this week and that I won't be a complete fool and mess this up. Everyone who has lead so far this spring has done great, so I have high standards to live up to, then again we all have the highest standards to live up to.

Now on to what I really wanted to hit on tonight. I was reading an article, either on FoxNews or CNN.com, that many therapists are seeing more and more high school age children suffering from health problems caused by stress related to college admissions. There is a growing trend amongst students to apply for early admission/acceptance, apply only to the most prestigious schools, take SAT prep classes and pursue areas of study that will lead to high paying career areas.

Many students are pressured by parents, others by classmates, teachers, coaches, and even themselves. Med schools, law school, Ivy League schools, MIT, Standford...get that degree, go for an advanced degree, get a great job and make oodles and boodles of money. All this before they even start college is just rammed down their throats and into their minds. Much of this starts as early as Jr. High.

When did being extraordinary become the norm? Why does every parent want their child to be the next Bill Gates, the next Eisntein, the next great surgeon, etc? What ever happened to be ordinary? Wake up call, most folks are ordinary and there is nothing wrong with that. I look around and the folks who are considered extraordinary, they have media attention everywhere they go, are always in the public eye, and their every move discussed on talk radio. For me, no thank you.

Ok now some might be asking, yeah, but do you really want? If you had the chance would you take the extraordinary. Quite simply no. I'm not that type of person, I like to avoid the spotlight as much as possible. Put the attention elsewhere and let me just do what I do. I don't want recognition for it, I just want to be me and do what I do because it's who I am. Give me a quite little neighborhood, a loving wife (someday, when God decided it's time)(who is extraordinary to me no matter what), and little feet running around and the sound of cartoons coming from the living room. Let me go out in the garden and trade a glass of water for a kiss. Let me go to work, work hard and do my job right so I can go coach little league/pop warner/etc. in the evening. Take the dog for a walk and say howdy to all my neighbors. Or just sit on my front porch with a glass of lemonade and talk to everyone who passes by. Ordinary-like. Nothing wrong with it, let someone else have the spotlight, I don't want it.

I don't know where people went wrong. Ordinary is fine, most of us grew up with it, most of us like it. So why push kids. Not everyone is going to be Dr. or a lawyer. We need mechanics, construction workers, burger flippers. Not everyone can be an astronaut when they grow up, so why make every child try to be one. Let them live and land where they will. They'll be ok. I'm fine, and yeah I stressed about school, but most of it was self induced pressure from being the first to go to a 4 year school (and a great one at that, by choice) and the first to go on to grad school and get a masters (at the best school on God's green earth...Texas A&M..and I got 2003 reason why...Whoop!). Nothing wrong with ordinary folks, don't forget that. And if you still aren't convinced about not pushing kids rememeber what Paul writes in 1 Corinthians 12:

v. 14 "Now the body is not made up one part but
of many"

v. 18-20 "But in fact God has arranged the parts in the
body, everyone of them, just as he wanted
them to be. If they were all one part, where
would the body be. As it is, there are many
parts, but one body."

v. 29-31 "Are all apostles? Are all prophets? Are all
teachers? Do all work miracles? Do all have
gifts of healing? Do all speak in tongues?
Do all interpret? But eagerly desire the greater

And just a final thing to think about:

from Proverbs 27:19

"As water reflects a face, so a man's heart relects
the man."

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