Recent Hollywood Converts Join Forces

Recently converted ex-Korn guitarist Brian “Head” Welch and vocal convert and actor Stephen Baldwin are joining forces to launch “a line of ‘cutting-edge Christian products’ in an attempt to give young people of faith some pop culture they can actually be proud of.”

“There’s just not a lot of really cool Christian material out there,” Baldwin added.

Thanks. Thanks a lot. I’ll be the first to admit Christians aren’t perfect, but when it comes to pop culture there have been a lot of steady improvements (Switchfoot, Sixpence None the Richer, The Passion of the Christ, etc.). I’m not sure if high profile converts are really what we need. (link via CT)

Lifestyles of the Hispanic Jesus

Robin Leach butchers the name ‘Jesus,’ misprouncing the name of NASCAR driver Morgan Shepherd’s sponsor, Racing with Jesus as the Spanish version, ‘Hay-Soos.’

Though if you think about it, which seems more likely: a Christian racing sponsor encouraging fans to ‘race with Jesus’ in a series crowded with alcohol and tobacco sponsors; or a Hispanic racing team encouraging a bit of diversity within the white-boy world of NASCAR? Both seem a bit ridiculous. Can you blame Robin Leach? (link via CT)

Red Lake School Shooting

The school shooting in Red Lake, Minn. yesterday that left 10 dead and 12 wounded is just plain depressing. It’s sad that nearly six years after Columbine these things continue to happen.

What’s most distressing is the description of the shooter from a student. She describes what seem like obvious cries for help that seem to have gone ignored:

[Jeff] Weise was into goth culture, [17-year-old Sondra Hegstrom] said, wore “a big old black trench coat,” drew pictures of skeletons, listened to heavy metal music and “talked about death all the time.”

A couple of his friends had said he was suicidal, she said, and Hegstrom quoted his friends as saying they were watching a movie once when he said, “That would be cool if I shot up the school.”

“They didn’t think anything of it,” Hegstrom said, but “he got terrorized a lot.” He was called names and people thought he was weird. “I’m still trembling,” she said late last night. “I just can’t believe this stuff is happening.”

Who knows how much of that is true. Goth culture, video games and Marilyn Manson were quickly blamed after Columbine, but I don’t think those charges stuck. What does seem to be consistent is teens being “terrorized,” to use Hegstrom’s words. It’s sad that a teen in that position would turn to a bloody rampage to solve their problems. When something like that happens it’s clear society as a whole is dropping the ball on so many fronts.

Firefox vs. Safari

Back in the dark ages when I used a PC I turned to Firefox when Internet Explorer became too much of a pain. But since becoming a Mac user over a year ago I’ve been happily using the default Mac browser, Safari. I’ve been quite happy with it’s fluid motion and the pleasing way it displays web sites.

But lately I’ve noticed it running slowly. It happens when I’m running several tabs and/or windows: suddenly everything stops and the cursor turns into that little rainbow ball and spins for a while. After six or eight seconds it stops and I can do something again. It only slows Safari–every other program is fine–but it keeps me from being as productive as I could be in Safari.

This spinning rainbow finally got on my nerves in the past week or two and I decided to give Firefox a shot. So far I’m liking it.

Continue reading Firefox vs. Safari

iPod Nation

2005_03_20pioneersmall.jpgMy smiling mug showed up in the Pioneer Press this morning, and thankfully I didn’t look like a mad scientist. The story, “iPod Nation” (registration required) covers people and their interesting uses for the iPod. I use mine to record interviews which landed me a few quotes, a profile and a picture (the online version doesn’t include the photos, so I scanned mine).

I didn’t say anything stupid, but I didn’t say anything brilliant either. I was actually more impressed with the guy they quoted after me, the Georgia Institute of Technology professor who records bird calls. I was also hoping for some more funky iPod uses. One of my favorites is how the band Sanctus Real uses one during performances.

I was also a bit disapointed that the writer, Julio Ojeda-Zapata, didn’t include my rant about how cool 89.3 The Current is and how I’ve discovered a bunch of new bands from them, bought the songs on iTunes, and now listen to them on my iPod. That was in full effect this weekend when I heard two cool songs during my four hour drive in the snow and then bought the tracks the next day. 11 of my top 50 most played songs I first heard on the Current. Maybe next time, Julio, we’ll give The Current their due.

Seriously though, I think quoting a fellow writer made Julio a bit nervous, but he did the best he could with the material I gave him. Saying something quotable must be a skill that comes with a lot of practice.

For the most part though, I’m just happy the photo doesn’t make me look like a mad scientist. Every other photo has the person doing something crazy, which is what I had to do (poor Linda Cullen, her picture looks exactly like what they made me do). Thankfully they didn’t use my crazy photo. Though I do have the entire process recorded–and after listening to it again and comparing it with the picture, it looks like the one he used was a light test. Or so he said.

But my favorite photo is the 12-year-old girl dancing and her hair going everywhere. With the black background and people in color style of the photographs, it’s like a reverse iPod commercial. My hat goes off to photographer Ben Garvin for not making me look like a freak.