Tuesday, May 29, 2007


I'm in something of a desert right now, and I'll be taking a break from blogging for a week or two. It's difficult to come up with new, interesting, Leaf-bashing material on a regular basis (although there is still lots of water in the Leaf-bashing well, but I'm the Convert Man, not the Leaf-Bashing Man).

I don't foresee any major changes to this blog (are you reading this Owen?), nor do I plan on ceasing altogether. Just a little vacation. TTFN!

Sunday, May 27, 2007

Born, & Reborn

Our little Abigail was baptized today. As Catholics, we believe that if the transformation into a Christian happens at a single moment (and it does), that moment is baptism. The Catechism states (1213):

Holy Baptism is the basis of the whole Christian life, the gateway to life in the Spirit and the door which gives access to the other sacraments. Through Baptism we are freed from sin and reborn as sons of God; we become members of Christ, are incorporated into the Church and made sharers in her mission.

So she has had the stain of original sin removed, and Abigail is now the holiest person in our home. It now falls to us as parents to nurture that new start and cause her to grow in the faith. What a task! What a joy!

Thursday, May 24, 2007

99 Balloons

This was hard to watch... but there is so much truth and beauty I can't not share it.

Wednesday, May 23, 2007


There's a lot to be said for clarity. Take, for instance, this error message I got today at work:

I wasn't quite sure what to say... I hit Yes and it didn't crash my computer, so I think it was the right choice.

Now that I'm back from my retreat, I'm approaching life with a little more clarity and a little more vision. I'm starting to get a sense of what God has planned for me, and I find myself - strangely - to be a willing participant.

In my earlier years, when God would reveal snippets of his plan for me, I would often balk and delay and distract myself, but I think the main fruit of this past weekend is a more immediate acceptance of his instruction.

I don't feel the time is right to blog about what I perceive this most recent direction to be. It is, of course, a worthy objective. It is also one which - had I been asked even a week ago - I would have rejected.

I don't have much else to say right now... the Middle East is a mess, the NDP won another majority in Manitoba, Stephen Harper is abandoning his roots as a libertarian... nothing else really seems worth spending my time on after this weekend.

Please keep me in your prayers as I discern this through.

Friday, May 18, 2007


I'll won't be posting for a few days (not that I've been real regular in the last while) as I'm doing another TEC retreat this weekend.

I ask for your prayers, that those going on the retreat for the first time will be open to what God calls them to, and that those of us guiding them through that journey will be gifted with wisdom and discernment.

I will, however, be missing Games 5 and 6 (if needed) of the Ottawa - Buffalo series, which is actually a big sacrifice for me. Pray that I'll be able to survive the retreat without knowing what's going on, as we'll be completely cut off from the outside world.

Saturday, May 12, 2007

Revenge of the Mom

This may come as a shock to many of my readers, but I was a fairly mischievous child. I caused my mother no end of grief as a toddler. She refers to me, even to this day, as a "dumper." Here are some of the things she'd told me I did:

  • dumped white flour down the cold air return
  • dumped ketchup on my bed
  • dumped liquid dish soap in our stove elements
  • dumped a full bottle of concentrated soap in my bath

Today, a lazy Saturday, I was lying in bed well past 10:00, and Dawn was nursing the baby in the rocking chair in the corner of our bedroom. Suddenly my eldest daughter creeps into the room and says, "Mommy, Ella is putting peanut butter all over her leg."

Knowing that with Dawn occupied any household emergencies automatically become mine, I spring out of bed with the grace of a drunken giraffe. Dawn asks, "Where is she?"

Eldest: "On the couch."

So I stumble downstairs and, indeed, Ella, the subject of a previous mess post, is covering her left leg and foot with peanut butter (not as bad as this or this though). I grab some paper towels and wipe as much off as I can. Then she cracks her first ever pun: "Only toes?" This also happens to be how she pronounces "toast."

Naturally, the floor, the coffee table, the couch and some blankets tossed on it are now quite smeared, but my priority remains with getting Ella cleaned up. I have her put each leg in a plastic grocery bag and hold on to the handles, then send her up to the tub. All told, it took about an hour before everything was cleaned up.

They say that when moms have mischievous children, they silently pass on a curse to those children, that they own progeny would cause them at least as much grief.

And as much as these issues are a nuisance to deal with, I still love being a dad. Sorry, Mom, but your revenge is pure joy.

Thursday, May 10, 2007

Lucky Me

In our bathroom we keep a little electronic poker game. It helps to pass the time when you're... you know... preparing to use one square.

Anyway, I was on a real good streak: I had full houses, threes of a kind, flushes, straights... I made more fake money in five minutes than I make real money in a day. It was incredible.

The next day I was driving to work, doing about 88 in an 80 zone. I wasn't consciously speeding, just following the flow of traffic and happened to be going a bit faster than I normally would. Suddenly a cop car zips by me on the other side of the road, and I was pretty sure he had tagged me. I watched him in my mirror as he vanished from site over a hill, but a few minutes later I see him about two kilometers back as he puts on his lights to get through an intersection. He's coming up fast, and the next thing I know, he's right on my tail, close enough to read my bumper sticker.

And then nothing. He eases off, slides over to the next lane, and lets me on my merry way.

Things happen in threes, so they say. Two sessions of good luck... so I went out that very day and bought a lottery ticket.

Did I win? Of course not. There is no such thing as some kind of grand harmonic resonance frequency to synchronize with randomly and thus cause good things to happen in our lives.

The interesting thing is, two of my numbers matched. Two sessions of good luck... two matching numbers... so the next time, I'll be waiting for six sessions of luck before I buy my ticket.

Who says a fella can't learn?

Sunday, May 06, 2007

More On Overpopulation

So I've finally finished Fr. Anthony Zimmerman's Catholic Viewpoint on Over-Population, which I've referred to in previous posts here and here.

There are two more points he makes which deserve to be spread around the internet. Firstly, he addresses the popular belief that:

...if national income remains the same, the savings of the average person will be smaller when the population grows. This leaves fewer surpluses for capital investment.

The very simplicity of this theory makes it suspect. If population be regarded as the engine which propels capital formation, rather than as a passenger carried by it, the picture is reversed. The theory then becomes as meaningless as saying that if an airplane has difficulty in getting off the ground, the engines out to be reduced in size to lighten the load.

We've become convinced as a society that people represent consumers and not producers. Perhaps in this day and age, when materialism and hedonism are so rife - and so blatantly promoted at every corner - we are more susceptible to this lie than ever before.

Secondly, he speaks against another popular belief in our world is that we must limit the sizes of foreign families in order to balance out economic disparity across the globe. Referring to the writings of Pope Pius XII, he goes on:

It would be more reasonable to help underdeveloped countries to develop, than to spread illicit birth-control propaganda, he continued. Society ought to correct its conduct by removing the causes of hunger in overpopulated or depresses areas, through increased use of modern discoveries for peaceful aims, through more trade and political collaboration, through "a more far-seeing, and less nationalistic economy." It ought to replace selfishness with charity, and avarice with justice.

"God is not going to ask men for an accounting of the general destiny of making; that is his business," continued the Pope. God will, however, ask an accounting of the single free acts which have been performed according to or against the dictates of conscience.

This point resonated within me well after I closed the pages. Yes, every individual has an obligation to contribute to the greater good and to be mindful of the role of humanity in the grand scheme of things. But again, if I have more children as a poor man in a poor country, I am creating more producers, once they get past the first 20 years of life. And demographically speaking, the sooner they are born, the sooner they will pass that 20-year mark. Thus when I become a burden to society and can no longer contribute to the economy or the tax roll, there are more people around to fill the void I leave. Whereas if I have - by choice or by chance - two or fewer children, my burden becomes near unbearable and euthanasia is given a serious look.

Therefore, for those of us who do have a choice to produce more offspring and don't because of some grand sense of global awareness, get off your high-horse and think long and hard about what you really have influence over.

By the way, if you're interested in reading this book now that I'm done it, let me know. There are a few people in line already, though.

Tuesday, May 01, 2007