Sunday, June 17, 2018

Riot

I am just not sure. I've been a fan of league of legends for some time and I've thoroughly enjoyed each split that's come along. Something's a little different this time, though. I am not sure what. I think the change to franchising was good overall. I thought the spring split was more engaging than any split before. The summer split has started up and... I don't know. I've had no urge to watch. No real interest in seeing what's going on.

Maybe it's because I don't really play the game any more. I have put in some time the party two weeks, but other than that I've not really kept up.

It seems like every time I load up a game, everything is different and maybe that's part of the problem.

Maybe it is because my favorite team benched my favorite players. Since I don't really have any favorite players to root for any more there isn't much pull.

Maybe it is just because I have too much else on my mind.

I really don't know. I am sure I will sit down and watch a couple games at some point, but right now I think just looking up the scores for each week is about as far as my interest extends.

Saturday, March 31, 2018

What is this?

Samsung Evo 960 M.2 2280  250GB

5 second cold boot to Windows 10 Professional.

I thought SATA SSD drives were as fast as could be needed. This M.2 blows that away.

Friday, March 9, 2018

That feeling

When you realize God gave you exactly what you asked for but you didn't even notice because you were too busy complaining and feeling frustrated because you've assumed you wouldn't get what you asked for because it didn't really come from a place of righteousness

Wednesday, August 16, 2017

My grandfather was racist

My grandfather was racist. 

He was many things. I don't think his racism defined him as a person, but it was there. I'd call it anecdotal racism. His personal experiences, processed through his personal opinions, caused him to apply invalid syllogisms to race which compounded over years of careless presumed verification.

I did my best to overlook it. I disagreed with it directly when appropriate, but also cared to show a concern for respecting his age and experience. I never thought he should die for those views. I wouldn't have accepted someone killing him over it. 

I hoped respectful discourse would have an impact. It never did. Yet, I still don't actually think his errant opinions warranted execution. I believe in accepting people with differing ideologies. 

Although I agree with the indignation expressed toward white supremacists rearing their ugly ideology, the ideology itself doesn't eclipse their humanity. At least not to me. They are clearly confused and even more clearly wrong. But what is this "kill them all" mindset which has pervaded our media as though such a stance is itself normal or acceptable?

As I listen to the bloodthirsty vociferations of our society I can only wonder how much longer until there is a murderous outcry to eradicate all who believe what I do. In my youth I never would have thought this version of the United States would exist within my lifetime. I was both blind and naive. 

This world is not my home.

Tuesday, August 15, 2017

Birthday Musings Round 2

I am also interested in some cooperative board games!

Escape from the Cursed Temple

Mechs and Minions (League of Legends board game)

Birthday Musing Round 1

When asked about what I might desire for my birthday, something leaped immediately to mind. I am not going to pretend it is the only thing, but it was the first. Before I get into it, though, I would like to note that the large sums being disseminated toward travel expenses to help our family are much appreciated and my highest priority. Please don't spend even more on presents if the travel is already a financial burden. 

What I thought about first of all was my desire to get a pen as a vehicle for some Pelikan Edelstein Aventurine ink into my life. I've already tried (and failed) to make this happen with cartridges and a Pilot Metropolitan Pop pen. Esther can attest to some of the general frustrations caused (read: ink everywhere).

I think the Pilot Metropolitan is a great fountain pen as an entry point into the "oh there are still fountain pens in the world" realization. These pens are about $14 and they are good writers for the price. However, they aren't phenomenal. They have some issues with leakage, drying and poor starts. Once the pen dries out, it can be frustrating to get it working again. On top of these natural concerns is the fact that the Pelikan cartridge system is in no way compatible with Pilot pens. The cartridges are too long. To overcome this, I pierce the cartridge and empty it into the Pilot converter. This tends to make a gigantic mess and although the ink is water soluble it still leaves a vague stain wherever it lands. I can't imagine Esther is a huge fan. Although I love the ink, the current system can't and won't continue.

I'd prefer to work with the bottled version:

I would need a piston filling or vacuum filling pen to put the ink in. My current pen interests are as follows:

Sadly, none of these pens is particularly inexpensive, ranging from the $150 Pilot Vanishing Point to the $60 TWSBI Diamond 580AL. Currently, I would say I am most interested in the TWSBI Vac Mini, as I have become fascinated by the vacuum filling mechanism employed by this pen. It's still a $70 pen. I have long been interested in the Lamy 2000, which has a very understated but beautiful "German" design and is relatively inexpensive for a 14k gold nib, which I am really interested in trying out. However, any pen over $100 is a bit of a stretch.

I also really enjoy the Pilot Juice Up ballpoint gel pens. They are the best I've used to date, however, the 0.3mm variety I am currently using are like needles and are surprisingly unpleasant to write with when compared to the 0.4mm version I originally tested. I'd love to get a variety of the larger tip
Pilot Juice Up 0.4mm Variety

Friday, March 24, 2017

We Live

The Grand Heresy

There is a question I think everyone asks in some way. It isn't something you'd actually speak out loud or something you'd likely discuss with friends. You happily allude to it, but nothing more. There is something dark in the question, something fearful. At its heart, it is the presumption of wisdom and the insolence of perspective. We can't help ourselves, though. Lost in our belief that we, too, can be like God it becomes natural to question Him. What does He think of our questions? We sometimes condemn ourselves willingly and other times we condemn Him, perhaps defensively thinking we are owed the opportunity. I don't know what Almighty God thinks of our constant questioning. Not really. Not ever really. It is impossible for me to know His mind in the manner I intimate with the word "know." I can see parts of it and I can accept the gift of understanding. But to truly comprehend Him implies, for me, a fullness of understanding which is logically impossible.

I cannot hold God in my mind. At least, I insist on believing I cannot. He is creator. He is infinite. He would have to be no greater than me to be contained in my finite mind. This a comforting impossibility. He grants glimpses of how He views our audacity. I think of the story of Job and am comforted to know He is not threatened or defensive. Truly, He couldn't be, correct? How could God feel threatened by us or feel the need to be defensive? Yet I am comforted to know He is neither. He is... bemused possibly. Job endured more than I think my constitution could withstand, for I am so very weak. He was faithful throughout. He wasn't faithful in my estimation, he was faithful in God's estimation. God listened to him and possibly even considered his complaints. And why shouldn't Job complain? He lost love, comfort, hope, security and support. He complained. Yet, he did not condemn God for his misfortune. He understood that God is God and he was a man. Job eschewed the idea that he could be like God. He considered himself low, and faithfully so.

I want to have that kind of faithfulness. I don't want to prove it or be tested in it. Let nobody ever believe I would. I want none of what Job endured. I only want to be, in my mind, as faithful as that man. To consider God to be God and to see myself as low - never to imagine for one fleeting moment that I am equal to God. The fear of the Lord is the beginning of wisdom and oh, how deeply I want to embody that fear. I want wisdom. Not to flirt with her beauty, but to be locked in her arms. I want my intractable self-adoration to be yoked by wisdom.

Job complained. He questioned. He didn't question the Godhood of God, but rather the manifestation of it. He never accused God of being selfish. This may seem an odd observation, but I think an honest assessment would reveal how often we accuse God of selfishness. Because we think of selfishness as the evil that it is in our context. For me to be selfish, to place myself at the pinnacle of my own consideration, is purest sin. I do not belong there. I never have. But God? He belongs there for both Himself and myself. He can't be selfish. It is logically inconsistent to think it. The only place where God could be considered selfish is the desolate heresy where He is seen as less than God, somehow available to our feeble judgement. Somehow contained in our minds and worthy of our ire. Job failed to think that way. He never questioned God's immutable right to bathe our existence in suffering. For God to torment us is no evil. It isn't bad. It isn't sin. It wouldn't remove His Godhood. He possesses the right to treat us in whatever fashion He pleases. Job didn't just imagine this concept. He fully accepted it and mistakenly believed God might be acting just so. But God never did. Job just wondered why God wanted the fate he was experiencing.

The closest Job came to accusing God of impropriety was in his questioning. He wanted to know what part of God's nature called for such experiences. I think, in this way, Job remained faithful to God. He accepted, unquestioningly, God's sovereignty and wondered, incorrectly, which portion of God's nature was pleased to inflict such circumstances on Job. And God corrected his misconception. Time and again God reminds us His nature is not to remove our enjoyment. He is the source of happiness and the wellspring of all that we enjoy. No matter how many times we attempt to foist our unhappiness upon Him, He has never added any of those things to our life. He may allow them and that is a concept which the mind trembles to comprehend. But He doesn't bring them. As much as He could, as much as it would not be wrong for Him to do so, He does not. In fact, He protects us from our own comeuppance to varying extents. We deserve so much pain and suffering. We asked God to go away and in doing so, requested the source of happiness to disappear from our existence. Of course, He did no such thing, but that's what we have requested. He stands between us and the consequences of our folly, protecting our lives with undeserved affection and blessing. The Apostle Paul speaks of this reality. He exhorts us to accept the tremendous compliment paid to us when God allows us to experience, for His sake, portions of the pain we deserve. I read his words as telling us to accept the amazing blessing God allows when He gives us the chance to turn our consequences into His glory. There is a transformation in that which destroys me. I can't, in beginning to understand this concept, maintain my composure. I am shaking as I write it.

Though lost under the weight of pondering the great depths of my sinfulness, God has granted us the overwhelming beauty of experiencing His glories. There is no truthful logic which can carry our minds to anywhere but facedown adoration. How He can transform this mess which I call my life is beyond mere acceptance. I can begin to see how His glory would absolutely erase my existence without the protection of the justification provided by Jesus. He wants me to exist, and never placed me in a position where I would be destroyed. He made a way for me to exist and to avoid the separation I keep asking for.

And in these thoughts lies some of the foundation for the question. People wonder: If this is the paradigm of life and if we are meant to be with God while wishing for separation, then would it not be better that we had never been created to begin with? It is embodied in rhetorical musings like "It would have been better if he was never born." It is a sentiment often raised when we are overwhelmed by consequence or observing someone else who is. Or in my co-worker, hearing about the trials endured by the babies we foster, saying "Well, if ever there were an argument for the legalization of abortion..." It is the blind passion dictating statements like "I just want to die" or "I can't wait until this life is over." It is dishonest, yes, but it is also the petulant pouting of our shared belief that we are equal to our creator. If we can't have everything the way we think we want it, even though we completely lack any understanding of what we want, then God was wrong to create us in the first place. For myself, I have resolved the answer to this view. Life is a blessing. It is a gift which doesn't require justification. It is a kindness unaffected by circumstance or choice. Praise God for making us. Praise Him without ceasing.