Thank human kindness and goodness — nothing else — for Rob Bell

From this editorial:

Bell went on to say that while it used to be fair to equate evangelicals with social conservatism, that assumption no longer holds true. More pointedly, he said, “I think we are witnessing the death of a particular subculture that doesn’t work. I think there is a very narrow, politically intertwined, culturally ghettoized, Evangelical subculture that was told “we’re gonna change the thing” and they haven’t. And they actually have turned away lots of people. And i think that when you’re in a part of a subculture that is dying, you make a lot more noise because it’s very painful. You sort of die or you adapt. And if you adapt, it means you have to come face to face with some of the ways we’ve talked about God, which don’t actually shape people into more loving, compassionate people. And we have supported policies and ways of viewing the world that are actually destructive. And we’ve done it in the name of God and we need to repent.”

Read the rest.

A journal-style update of yours truly

It was St Patrick’s day weekend. If you weren’t wearing green, I hope you were pinched to the point of bruising.

Approaching the weekend, we were coasting from a fun head shot photo shoot with 16 new staff members for a large company.

Of course, I didn’t tell you what happened at the shoot. While shooting the second person of 16, I bumped my camera while it was sitting down and it rolled over and broke the trigger that fires the strobes.

Tina gives me props for keeping calm under pressure, which is a very (very) developed trait. Thanks to a disciplined upbringing of great parenting and lots of sports, I took a very short temper to practically nil in terms of working with clients.

My temper isn’t completely gone. But I have to say it’s much better than it was even a few years ago.

But when my trigger broke, I was sweating. If the trigger was completely broken, there’d be no photos. I didn’t have a backup plan on this one. Usually I travel with a wire that would directly connect me to the strobes. But I didn’t have one with me.

With no photos, we’d completely let down our client.

There I was sweating. But that’s where having Tina is amazing. She alleviates those situations by redirecting energy and focus to her. It’s an invaluable asset to have.

And this is what I came up with:


Yes, I had to tape down the trigger hard enough to keep the connectors together.

It worked like a MacGyver charm.

It’s hard to believe I was using a Hasselblad with a jerry-rigged attachment. But the show must go on.

Moral of the story: make sure you watch MacGyver before becoming a photographer. 

On Friday, I woke up feeling awful. I wanted to blame it on the Ides of March, out of pity for Julius Caesar’s murder.

I didn’t sleep well all week. We had a doctor appointment/checkup on Thursday, and I think I worked myself up to sickness. I noticed in light tests from Wednesday, that I was pale. So I spent a lot of the day resting, and the rest of the day working.

Friday night, we took it easy.

Saturday, Tina and I soaked in the whirlpool at the gym and I worked most of the day.

It was also my mom’s birthday. I talked to her, and she had plans to spend the evening at my brother’s house with his kids and wife. They were ordering in. Like any grandparents, my parents LOVE my brother’s kids, so it would make more sense to spend time at their house.

She had also placed some clothes on hold at her favorite store. She planned to return to the store on Sunday to see what money she could put together in the meantime to buy as much as she could.

After we got off the phone, I told Tina I felt that we needed to do something nice. Maybe I could call ahead to the restaurant they were ordering from and make sure I got the bill. It seemed tough.

So I texted my sister-in-law and asked her at what store and its location my mom was shopping. I called the the store and added a gift certificate to mom’s order to alleviate some of the cost. That way when she went back, it’d be as good (or better) than opening a gift.

St. Patrick’s Day weekend!

St. Pat’s weekend is drunken debauchery at its best in places like Chicago. When St. Pat’s falls on a Wednesday, people use it as an excuse to celebrate the weekend before and the weekend after.

And by celebrate, people dress in green — often crazy stuff like reflective tights, wigs and wacky hats. Any excuse to start drinking at 7 or 8 a.m. is completely welcome in this city. I have no idea why. I’ve never participated in St Patty’s weekend drinking.

Although it was interesting to see on Facebook that several people posted the history of St Patrick’s day and shame on people for taking a Christian “holiday” and commercializing it and changing its meaning to something grotesque and evil.

These are the same people who can’t understand that EVERY holiday is commercialized and Christians stole Christmas and Easter from the pagans for their purposes.

Besides, I’m sure the stories of St. Patrick — a dude who lived in the 400s — were never embellished or exaggerated.

Saturday night, we spent the evening at our friends’ house — Ben and Kasha. They made Mexican and we drank like it was St. Patrick’s day. 🙂

On Sunday, we met regular reader Glock21 and his family for lunch (pictured below). We shared sushi at a great restaurant on Michigan Avenue, and geeked out over local fare, including museums and tourist attractions.


I’m somewhere in the reflection if you look hard enough.

Today, Tina and I are racing around preparing for a full-day shoot tomorrow. Super excited.

Sit tight. Hopefully I’ll share stuff from the studio as we go.




Satan looks like Obama? Coincidence? I think not.

article-2295082-18BFD6BD000005DC-96_634x547From the Daily UK:

Sunday evening’s episode of the History Channel’s hit series ‘The Bible’ threw up an awkward coincidence when viewers noticed that Satan bore a remarkable resemblance to President Obama.

Twitter exploded into life during the airing of the latest edition of the Mark Burnett-produced series with most noting the striking similarities between the 44th President and the devil played by actor Mehdi Ouzaani.

The show has been a surprise hit in the ratings, with the religious mini-series attracting 13.1 million viewers on Wednesday – topping television leviathan American Idol’s 12.8 million viewers on Wednesday.

Read more:

Thanks, Aaron!



It’s Catordog!


Today’s Catordog is brought to you by one-eyed, pirate kitty June.

She’ll raise her skull and crossbones flag faster than you can say cat scratch and she’ll mount your boat and slice your face up before you can count to point one.

And then she’ll cuddle you as your last breaths ooze from your slightly parted mouth.

June is regular-reading Ryno’s cat. Ryno recently bought an on-camera flash in an effort to take his photography to the next level.

In case you were wondering, Ryno shoots with a Nikon something or other, and this shot was “85mm @f2.0. so nice”.

Happy Catordog.