Sunday, October 31, 2004

One More Reason to Love the Internet

Part of appeal of the internet for me is the access it allows to other's memories.

I've frequently been reminded of some game, cartoon, book, or character I loved as a child but forgot amid the pressures of growing up.

It's happened twice in just the last couple of days.

First, I remembered my brother and I owned the Magic Shot Shooting Gallery. I loved this thing. It was a plastic box containing a completely enclosed row of targets you could see through its clear plastic front, A blue plastic gun with a magnetic tip let you pull one of the many ball bearings used as ammo from its resting place in a little groove near the front. When you squeezed the trigger the metal ball would fly toward the target. See what I'm talking about here.

Also, I'd forgotten all about Wacky Packages. These were stickers with parodies of popular product logos on them. For example, "Crust" toothpaste instead of "Crest" and "Badzooka Bubble Gum" rather than "Bazooka." I had completely forgotten these until I found this Web page. A little further research revealed the recent resurging interest in the twisted stickers among Gen Xer's looking for mementos of their childhoods has led Topps, the company that made them, to reissue a new set in May of this year.

Find out where to get yours at their official Web site.

Wednesday, October 13, 2004

A Brief and Unfortunate Note

My grandmother, Wilma Abbott, died yesterday. Her health had been failing for a long time. Perhaps, because of that, no one really expected it when it came.

Earlier this summer I was able to sit down with a video camera and interview her about her life story. It's a document I'm sure coming generations of my family will treasure.

Both she and my grandfather had returned to church in the last decade or so, even having been baptized when they both were well past their mid-70's.

It's a comfort to know that to "be absent the body is to be present with the Lord" and that she joyfully awaits the coming ressurection.

Friday, October 08, 2004

Pierce Pettis Interview

An interview I did with singer/songwriter Pierce Pettis appears in this week's WORLD magazine.

You can see it here .

Thursday, October 07, 2004

Reading Edith Schaeffer

I've been reading Edith Schaeffer's massive autobiography, "The Tapestry."

Neither of the Schaeffers ever seemed to have had the benefit of a ruthless editor. Her husband, Francis Schaeffer, produced works that are often needlessly repetetive and long-winded. Her books have a chatty style, but tend toward needless digressions and tangents.

Nonetheless, the story of how she and Dr. Schaeffer came to know one another, to marry, and ultimately to begin a mission in war ravaged Europe that would become L'abri is enjoyable and inspiring.

Mrs. Schaeffer stresses the mystery of the tension between providence and the reality of human choice. She insists human choices can alter history.

One scene in the book makes this point personal for me.

Just before Francis Schaeffer left the house on his way to college, his father stopped him at the door.

"I don't want you to do this. I don't want a son who is a minister," he said.

Francis asked his father for a few minutes to think it over. He went down to the cellar and cried. He prayed God would show him what to do.

He went back to the door, through it, to college and into the history of Christianity.

Had he not made the choice he did that day, there would have been no L'abri. Had there been no L'abri, my old theology professor David Wells might not be teaching at Gordon-Conwell. Had he not been teaching there, I may never have made my way there to sit in his classroom. Had I never gone to Gordon-Conwell, I would never have met my wife. Had I never met my wife, my life would be completely other (and worse) than it is today.

Though he couldn't have known it then, when Francis Schaeffer stepped out that door he carried many of us, though unborn and even unimagined, with him.

Still Here

My 'net access is still really sketchy. I see a few of you have continue to drop by every day and I appreciate it. I really do.

I'm hoping my access problems get worked out in the next week or so. Network problems, you know.

When everything is squared away I'll be back with regular posts. Meanwhile, I'll do what I can.

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