That new gear smell

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Today, Bill, Tina and I went to Helix’s going out of business sale and picked up some great gear at way reasonable prices.

My big purchase was a fresnel powered by a strobe. In the above picture, it’s behind my head.

We tested the light already, and it’s gorgeous.

Can’t wait to test it in a real shoot.

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Look at what just moved up — to the top! — of my Christmas list


Say hello to my soon-to-be new ride.

What’s not to like about a bicycle with a helicoptering wine glass holder, wine holders with gorgeous bottles of wine, a honking horn, easy mobility and flowers?

I mean, seriously.

I need one of these so that I can spread the happiness and joy I feel from day to day.

I could ride down the streets of Chicago pouring a glass here and a glass there. Everywhere a glass glass.

What a gas.

Click to enlarge. You won’t be disappointed.

What the believing kids are writing

Over at Facebook, John Shore (@johnshore) posted a link to a blog post about 1 Timothy 2:12 explaining that the writer, Dan Wilkinson, did an exceptional job of explaining the verse.

The post is called “I do not permit a woman” and can be found here at Cooling Twilight (dot com).

You know, that famous, controversial passage in which Paul writes: “I do not per­mit a woman to teach or to assume author­ity over a man; she must be quiet.”

You know, one of those verses that renders the concept of belief a bit silly, reckless and short-sighted.

I took a look at the post. Wilkinson does the standard, the message is out of context to today’s world, and shouldn’t be looked at so seriously. Not surprisingly, he says that some things are mysterious in the bible. Imagine that.

Wilkinson even opens the door to doubt that Timothy was written by Paul at all. He quickly returns and says, But for the sake of the argument, and that Timothy is canonical, let’s explore it as if it were.

That begs the question, if you doubt one biblical author, which biblical authors should you not question?

Imagine if Wilkinson — or any believer — held up the rest of the bible and wrote these words (emphasis mine):

Part of the prob­lem is that we’re only hear­ing one side of the con­ver­sa­tion — we’re lis­ten­ing in on one end of a two thou­sand year old dis­cus­sion that wasn’t directly intended for us. We aren’t famil­iar with the cul­ture and con­text, we don’t truly know what it was like to be a Christian in first cen­tury Ephesus and we don’t know many details about the dif­fi­cul­ties the church there was facing.

“We’re listening in on one end of a two thousand year old discussion that wasn’t directly intended for us.”


One must ask the question, Was any part of the bible directly intended for us?

“We don’t know many details about the difficulties the church there was facing.”

Don’t we? Don’t we know some details about the church’s evolution from nothing to something? The evolution of the trinity concept? The evolution of the godman?

Wilkinson nearly concludes the discussion with this sentence:

In the end, we must be con­tent with more ques­tions than answers.

Let that sink in for a second. When have you met a Christian who was more content with questions over answers?

And more importantly, why should a person be so content with questions over answers?

Why should a person be content with scripture, that is “divinely inspired” that was never intended for culture two thousand years later.

Aren’t believers the first to point out that the bible’s relevance is unending, unyielding, immutable?

Does Paul get a pass on this solidarity toward verbatim commitment?

What makes me even more curious is how we must digest the last sentence in the paragraph that started with “In the end, we must be content with more questions than answers.”

Wilkinson writes:

We must be con­tent with a less-than defin­i­tive con­clu­sions about this pas­sage, but that also shouldn’t pre­vent us from com­ing to any con­clu­sion at all.

Confused? Wondering what to think? Don’t know the mystery but want to solve the puzzle?

Jump to a conclusion!

That’s the answer.

Go read the post yourself. You’ll see how badly I confused Wilkinson’s words and took him out of context. You will see that my writing is full of mystery. But consider what I wrote, and take it as gold, valuable gold.

Because I said so.


Bill Nye on the age of the earth, oppositional science ideas and how it affects our economy and international perception


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Bill Nye was on CNN recently discussing the age of the earth, and how science knows it’s 4.5 billion years old.

You can click the screen captured image above to watch the interview. I suggest it.

He’s not saying anything new to anyone who reads about this stuff, but the discussion about the Dover trial is a bit nuanced.

I found this video at Pharyngula, and PZ gave a great explanation about the importance of bringing up the smoke detector.

He writes:

Ionizing smoke detectors use a tiny amount of radiactive [sic] material to generate charged ions by their decay; these ions are released into the space in a capacitor, and their movement generates a constant trickle of current. If smoke particles enter the detector, they bind to the ions and block the current; that easily measured decline in current is what triggers the alarm in the detector.

This is a very simple system that depends entirely on our quantitative understanding of radioactivity. If radioactivity didn’t work like we thought it did, your smoke detector would not be very reliable, and for that matter, no one would have thought of using this function to work as a smoke detector.

Read more here.

It’s Caturday!


Today’s Glorious Caturday is brought to you by Xina’s hairball of cuteness, Cosmo.

She writes:

He’s the coolest, least demanding, sweetest little ninja panther ever known. He turned 14 in October, but you’d never know he was such an old man. He still runs around and plays like a youngster and kicks the dogs’ butts on a daily basis.

Thanks Xina!