Wednesday, December 21, 2005

A ghost town full of life

Tuesday was the last day of finals at Grand Canyon. A lot of people had finished up earlier, but there were still a few stragglers taking tests yesterday. But now that finals are over, the dorms have emptied out, save for a few lonely souls. It feels a lot like a ghost town. You can see evidence of people once being here, but they just aren't around any more. It's kinda sad. But it's also pretty cool.

Last night, after SALT, the ten or twelve of us who remained, decided to play hide and go seek. It was close to 11:30 and open hall had ended about an hour and a half earlier. But since three of us were RA's, we decided it would be okay. Mostly it was a game of scaring people as they walked down the pitch black hallway, but it was still a lot of fun. Afterwards we all went and hung out in the lobby and played board games for a while. After a few sleepy heads went to bed, a couple of girls decided they needed ice cream, so Big John and I went to QT with them as their bodyguards.

The whole point of that story is to setup this - when weird circumstances happen, walls come down and people get closer. The dorms were empty, and those of us who were left definitely felt lonely and almost left out. We had to stay behind a little while longer while we envied those who got to go home early. I got to hang out with a couple of people that I don't normally spend time with last night, and it was fun. We became a group with loneliness as our common bond. And it was enough. In some sense, I think each of us would have rather been at home, spending Christmas with out family. But I know that I wouldn't have given up that time for anything. There were some new friendships formed last night and some old ones made stronger because we were all alone together. And it was a good thing.

They say old friends take a long time to grow. I figure that in a couple of years I will be needing some old friends to rely on and so I guess now is a good time to start making some new ones. You never know when they will come in handy.

Tuesday, December 20, 2005

Honey, did you remember to take out the kids? Oh, and have you seen Nemo?

I just realized that it has been a whole week since I last posted. I am so sorry. Finals definitely brought out the worst in me. I just checked out from my daily responsibilities, like posting. But now that finals are over, I will be back to being regular, just like an old man on prunes. Once a day. To kick things off, here is a special DOUBLE PICTURE TUESDAY!!! Yes, I know, I'm too good to you people.

Have a very merry Tuesday. I will see you tomorrow.

Tuesday, December 13, 2005

Better late than never

Sorry about the wait, it has been a long day. But as promised, a picture has arrived for picture Tuesday.

I hope you all enjoy the rest of your Tuesday. I will have an amazing post tomorrow. One that will knock your socks off. In the mean time, watch out for over-protective grandmas. (If either of my grandmas read this, I'm not talking about you.)

Friday, December 09, 2005

Finally, the definition of Ben

Here's a fun little thought that I have been pondering: what defines me? If I asked myself who I am, what would I say? I would describe my fiance, for example as an artist. It is not what she does but it is who Jamie is. She cannot help but be an artist. It defines the way she thinks and acts. We had a discussion about this a couple of nights ago. She was worried that about what would happen to her if she decided to not paint for a living. But we came to the conclusion that even if she didn't paint for a job, she would still be an artist because that is an essential part of her.

But who am I? What part of me is left behind when you take away all the things that I do. I have an idea, but I'm not sure I really like it. Some things that describe me by what I do would be I'm an RA, I'm a Bible study leader, or I teach swing. When you take away those things that I do, what seems to be left behind are two options. In each of those roles is the obvious, I lead. But I don't really like that. I don't mind rising to the occasion, but in the long run, I would rather fade into the background and have a nice quiet life of anonymity. On the other hand, it would seem that serving connects the three. Each one of those requires that I serve those I lead, often putting in long and thankless hours to make things go smoothly. Is that who I am?

It seems that the options open to me are head of state or humble servant of the people. Could it be both? Could who I am be some crazy marriage of the two? I don't know. Maybe I'm on the completely wrong track with this. But as I self-evaluate, this seems to be what I see. Meh. Well I suppose the power hungry, maniacal dictator life can't be all bad. I guess we'll see.

Thursday, December 08, 2005

Watch out for the flying squeegee

I officially have two weeks left in the semester. Because of my position as an RA, I have to stick around until the 22nd of December. It really sounds worse than it is though, the last day of finals is the 2oth or 21st, so I'm not sticking around aimlessly without any residents to take care of.

So, you are probably wondering what today's post will focus on. Me too. I have no idea. I have a ton of homework hanging over my head right now and I am having troubles concentrating on doing any writing of any kind. I also have a test in chemistry tomorrow. So, rather than try to come up with something meaningful or clever, I will end here with a thoughtful saying. okay, never mind. I don't know any thoughtful sayings. So, have a great day, and I will hopefully finish everything up today and will have something much better for tomorrow.

Tuesday, December 06, 2005

Tuesday, we're glad you have arrived

I wish my pillow came with this warning. Meh. At least it's Tuesday. Enjoy it before they run out.

One more thing, this is officially the 101st post on this site. That's a lot of writing. I never thought I would get carried away like this and keep going after summer. Oh well, I love to write and this gives me an outlet for my creativity. Or something like that. Have a great day.

Monday, December 05, 2005

Football and apology

I am terribly sorry for being such a slacker with the posts. I know I vowed to never miss a day again and then I went and skipped posting on both Thursday and Friday. Well that's it. No more. I am resolved to never make a vow again. I know that's not quite what you were expecting, but if I vow to never vow again, then I can skip posting whenever I want and still feel like I am keeping my vow. Confused, good. Then I accept your appology and I think it would be good for all of us if we just moved on and forgot the whole business.

I went to Cali this weekend to play a little football. We played in a tournament against 10 other different Christian universities from California. We took third place in the tournament, which is pretty good for us since we have never been before. It was a lot of fun, but I was a little disappointed because I didn't get as much playing time as I would have liked. But I did get to hang out with the guys and get to know some of them better, so it was a good trip and I'm glad I went.

Have a great Monday and cheer up, tomorrow is Tuesday and you know what that means: PICTURES! Wahoo. Yay for Tuesday.

Wednesday, November 30, 2005

Pay attention class

For those of you interested in photojournalism, listen up. Today I have the extreme honor of being able to present you with this amazing piece of storytelling using pictures. The pictures in this article are worth a thousand words, each. They don't help tell the story, they tell the story. Without them, this would just be another boring piece of work. So pay attention, you might just learn something.

I decided to cleaned my room on Sunday.

The two pictures above show how my room used to be. My bed was raised up pretty high on cinder blocks and a desk. My two chairs faced the TV over by my clothes and the sink. As you can tell, it was a little messy. I didn't feel like it was a productive environment, so I decided to switch things up.

First off, I moved everything from my bed-side of the room into the living room. And I moved my desk out completely.

Next I moved the TV over to the corner by the window where my desk used to be. With the TV out of the way, I could then start to move my bed over where the TV used to be.

This required that more stuff be moved into the living room.
Then I cleaned out the area under my bed. It was very scary. I found this humongous spider under there, but it ran off. So now it is roaming free in my bedroom, probably waiting for me to go to sleep so it can suck my guts out and eat me. But I digress...

Next, I finalized up the TV area and organized my movies. It's pretty spectacular, I know. Then I finished up the bed.

The bed is still on cinder blocks, but it is no longer as high up. Also, I put the two desks together in the shape of an L across from my bed so now I have my own little office. Yay me. I am already feeling a million times more productive and my room has stayed clean for three days now.

And that is how photojournalism is done. Take that! all you doubting Thomases out there. Anyway, today promises to be more exciting than yesterday. Wahoo. Look out world, here I come.

Tuesday, November 29, 2005

This is Bob Barker reminding you to...

Haha. I hope no one takes offense at this. But if you're like me, as soon as you saw this sign, immediately a couple of names popped into your head. Sheesh. You people. Anyway, it's Tuesday and Monday is finally out of the way. Wahoo. Have a great rest of the week.

Monday, November 28, 2005

No shave November

The guys at Grand Canyon had a contest for No-shave November. Basically, we all went for most of November without shaving and then got awards for our beards, or lack of them. Although I didn't win any awards, I was pretty proud of myself for being able to grow a pretty good looking beard. Below are my before and after pictures.

Ya, I know. Amazing isn't it. I'm sorry about taking last week off, I was sick and on vacation. Between the two, there was no way anything was going to get done. But I'm back now, so you can all get back to your normal routines. Don't worry, it will never happen again. Unless it does. Sorry.

Tuesday, November 22, 2005

Tuesday, the day after Monday

In no way do I condone getting drunk. But this was all I could do on short notice. I may be nearly dead, but it just wouldn't be Tuesday without a picture. Have a happy Thanksgiving everyone.

Monday, November 21, 2005

Sick, but educational

I went home this weekend because I wasn't feeling well. While I was there, I left the power cord to my computer sitting on the living room floor. So, between now and sometime on Wednesday, when I will be going home for Thanksgiving, I only have whatever life is left on this battery. If I don't do much posting, I'm sure you will understand.

The doc says that he thinks I have bronchitis. Wahoo. I don't think I have ever had any cool forms of sickness before. It's usually just a cold, or the flu. As you can see above, I included a really nifty little picture to help visualize what I have. But bronchitis sounds pretty cool, right? Actually, it stinks. I can't breathe without pain, I have a nasty cough, my muscles are sore and my head is clogged up like the streets of Israel on Yom HaAtzmaut (look that one up on your own). Anyway, I feel down right awful. God is good to me as always though. I may not have to take one of the tests I was supposed to take this week. That would be awesome. Keep me in your prayers.

Friday, November 18, 2005

The best post ever

Well, yesterday I went to my first class this week. It was a lot of fun. Sometimes, I think school would be a lot better without the classes. I just wish this fantasy would come true. I'm really sorry that today's post pretty much blows. I have absolutely no inspiration. Maybe later on this afternoon I'll feel like writing. If I don't talk to ya'll again, have a great weekend and I'll see you on Monday.

Wednesday, November 16, 2005

Trashy Wednesday

I'm in a funk. I'm not quite sure what that means exactly, but then again, I'm not quite sure how I am feeling. You see, I don't feel bad, as in sick or in pain. I don't feel tired or sleepy. But I just don't feel right. It's almost like something bad is about to happen, or maybe I'm forgetting to do something important. You know that feeling you get sometimes, like a sixth sense? Well I've had it all week. And I don't like it, but I have no idea how to get rid of it. So if anyone has a bottle of funk remover lying around, could ya loan me some?

On to today's topic, trash. We have a lot of it in our room currently. The plan was to pile it in the corner and then take it out once it got too big. But then it got too big and nobody wanted to take it out. So now it just keeps getting bigger.

That Dunkin' Donuts box there in the corner, I think it has been there for about a month if not longer.

So now we have the dilemma of whether to go for a new record and pile up the trash until Christmas break, or should we make Jon take it out? It's going to be a tough decision. Maybe if we (and by we, I mean Jon) get rid of it, my funk will go too. Out with the trash and the funk, sounds like a good motto to me.

Tuesday, November 15, 2005

A web log

I can definitely remember this happening to my brother and I when we were little. We both swore it wasn't us. To this day, I still don't know which of us pooped. Happy Tuesday.

Monday, November 14, 2005

Today's special is to die for

On Sunday, we had our monthly SALT Bible study leader gathering. Each month we do a potluck dinner and then talk about stuff for about an hour. This month, the guys volunteered to cook the meal. At the last minute, most of our guys either decided not to come or told us they would be late or even right on time. But someone still had to prepare the meal. This left Scott and I to figure out how to fix dinner for 25 people. So we did what we had to do. We got domestic.

We made a chicken and vegetable pasta with alfredo sauce and buttered French bread on the side with pie for dessert. We had all four burners going at once, a pie in the oven and two loaves of bread toasting in the oven. We started off by boiling the dickens out of the pasta. Then we sautéed the veggies, which took forever because we overloaded the pan and didn't defrost the vegetables first. When the pasta finished boiling, we ripped up the chicken into little pieces and tossed them into the pasta before adding the veggies. Right before we were about to leave, we threw on the super hot alfredo sauce to keep everything warm. And let me tell you, that was some of the best pasta ever. I can't wait until I get my own place and can start cooking all the time...

Anyway, we only called our moms once while cooking, so we felt all grown up. Yay us. Chalk up another title on my list of roles. I am now a domestic male, fully capable of cooking a meal that won't kill you as soon as you eat it.

Saturday, November 12, 2005

Hibernation station change of destination

Normally I don't post on the weekend, but I have been thinking a lot about getting married lately and I needed to get one of my concerns off of my chest and into cyber space. Growing up, family life got a little crazy at times, and when it did, I would just escape. I would find a nice spot (often the roof) away from all the craziness that was my family, grab a book and some snacks and be by myself until things settled down. When things get crazy here at school, with being an RA, a Bible study leader and all the other stuff I do, sometimes I just check out. I'll just go into my room, lock the door, turn up the music and read a good book, drop down on my knees and pray for a while or play a game on the computer; pretty much anything to help me relax and forget about the crazy world on the outside. When I'm overwhelmed, I shut myself away with lots of food and relax until things settle down. I'm a hibernater.

Well, I was talking with Chris Potts on Friday, and he was talking about one of the hardest things for him at the beginning of his marriage was that there was nowhere to run. He couldn't just check out for a little bit and then return to his wife. That scares me a little bit. I don't know how that will affect me. Will I go crazy? Will I find a different way to relax? I honestly have no idea. It's not that I'm worried about Jamie being my "ball and chain", I'm so excited to spend the rest of my life with her. But I do know that I won't be able to hibernate any more. I'm confident that God will help me, but at the same time it does pose an interesting problem. Well, here's to the next 26 weeks. Hopefully I'll get all of my hibernating out of the way by then.

Friday, November 11, 2005

If you had wrote this, you would have come up with a better title

I know, I know, I didn't post yesterday. It's hard to force inspiration. I want you all to know that I really did try. I started about three different posts and gave up after much hair pulling and banging my head against the table repeatedly. I'm sorry, I just didn't have the writing fever.

On to the important business of today, I feel like I have shared a lot on this blog. But to truly understand me, let me share my favorite word with you. pandemonium. Isn't that a great word? I mean, when you think of pandemonium, what comes to mind? For me, it's definitely a bunch of little panda bears out in the woods beating on each other with bamboo sticks. Haha. It makes me laugh just to think about. There are very few words in the English language that make me laugh. But pandemonium definitely makes my day better every time I hear it.

Wednesday, November 09, 2005

One GRAND (get it?) celebration

I just want to say a humongous thank you to everyone who has made this latest mile stone possible. 1000 visitors have officially jumped on this site since May. So thanks everybody. To celebrate, I will be canceling my planned two week session on "The problems with the current classification system of hurricanes and a proposal for a new system that attempts to properly classify hurricanes according to wind speed, effective radius and destructive potential". In addition, (because I'm such a great guy) I will be announcing in the next couple of days a new weekend feature that will be sure to knock your socks off. (And yet another shameless ploy to attract more readers.) To conclude, I have a test today in Chemistry. The end.

Tuesday, November 08, 2005

Hang on to your dentures

I'm working on trying to think of a closing phrase or identifying phrase that I can use at the end of my blogs like "Stay classy San Diego" or "And that's the way the cookie crumbles". If you have any suggestions, send 'em in. Anyway, here's today's picture.

Does anyone else love Tuesday as much as me? Enjoy the short week.

Monday, November 07, 2005

The Quickening

We have a hall event at GCU every two weeks that Matt and I call "the Quickening". At first it was a veiled attempt to get points for our hall in the school-wide competition. But now it has become something more. Somehow God was able to take it from just another thing we do, to something we look forward to and something that brings us together. It has helped to unite our guys and make us a hall of brothers. Quickening means to enliven or give life. I think that is what is beginning to happen with the hall. So the name seems to fit.

We do the Quickening every other Friday night. The first time we did pizza, a movie, and watched the GCU soccer games. It was fun, but nothing extraordinary. But afterwards was when it all began. I was just getting ready to go to bed when one of the guys came running down to my room. "Ben, Ben you gotta see this!" He prodded me out the door and took off running. I chased after him in just my jeans. When we came to the corner room he threw open the door, and ushered me in. I could hear the faint pulse of techno music in the other room. Two of the other guys from the hall were also in there, just standing there looking at me.

"Watch this." He said and then flipped off the lights. The music got louder and all three guys pulled out glow sticks. "We're having a rave!!!" They shouted. They threw me a pair of glow sticks and we just started to dance. It was amazing. Four very heterosexual guys dancing in the dark with glow sticks for 3 hours straight. I would never have believed it.

And the rest is history. We have started having a rave every other Friday night in one of the open rooms in the hall. Matt and I bought two black lights and a fog machine. We have a DJ and very loud speakers. And we dance 'till campus security makes us turn the music off. A new era is beginning at GCU.

Thursday, November 03, 2005

The saga continues

Did anyone else read my post from yesterday? If you were at all offended by it, I'm terrible sorry. Sometimes I just have opinions on things that I have to get out. Anyway, that post was removed due to the overwhelming amount of complaints I received. Sheesh. You people.

Sometime this week, I was supposed to post the rest of the proposal. This seems like a good time to do so. To read the beginning of the story, click HERE . I left off just as Jamie and I were climbing the ladder to the roof of the school where I first asked her to be my girlfriend.

...There are three levels on the roof of the gym. We emerged from the darkness below onto the first level. There isn't much to see there, so we climbed up to the middle level. Once we got up there, I led Jamie over to the edge, with the pretense of looking at the amazing view. When we got to the edge, Jamie looked down and saw my brother below with his camera taking pictures of us. Because it was nearly dark, she clutched at me, scared of the "strange man" down below. I reassured her that it was just my brother and that he was doing a "class project".

"So it's okay." I told her. "You can just stand right over here." I said as I ushered her closer to the edge so Matty could get a better shot. "And then I will get down on one knee..." And I proceeded to kneel down. At this point, Jamie was just a little confused.

I pulled one of those little prize eggs out of my pocket (You know, the ones at the front of stores where you put in 25 cents and out comes some little prize in a plastic egg). I had put the ring in there so I wouldn't lose it as easily. I know, I'm brilliant. When Jamie saw it, I think she got a little mad. "What is this? Is this a joke? Is that fake?!!" She demanded as I pulled the ring out. I assured her that it was indeed a very real ring. Not a good idea. Because she proceeded to freak out. This didn't help me out at all. I said something like, "Jamie I love you. Will you marry me?" When I finally got the ring on the right finger, she still hadn't said anything but "AHHHH" and "O-my-gosh" and "AHHHHH". (She wasn't very verbal at this point.) So I stood up, wrapped my arms around her and gave her a kiss. Then I asked her if that was a yes.

As soon as she assured me that yes she would marry me. At that very moment, we heard music drifting softly our way on the night breeze. Jamie turned to me with a quizzical look in her eyes. "What's that?" she asked.

I shrugged my shoulders. "Let's go find out." So we made our way up to the top level of the roof where the music seemed to be coming from. When we came up, Jamie first noticed the candle lit pathway that led to our candle lit dinner up there on the roof under the night sky. And then she saw the violinist that I had asked to come and serenade us. He was dressed in a tuxedo just to add some flare. (Thanks a ton Mr. Wilkison!!!) Anyway, we ate dinner by candle light while being serenaded, had dessert and that was that. We are now engaged and happily planning our wedding. THE END.

Tuesday, November 01, 2005

There's a site for this?

Wow. Today is picture Tuesday and have I got some pics for you. When I first saw these, I laughed out loud for five minutes straight. Enjoy.

This is from a site called For those of you who would like to laugh some more, click this link and scroll down a little for the really funny ones. And then for the icing on the cake, check out this page.

Welcome to November and have a great Tuesday.

Monday, October 31, 2005

I couldn't come up with a clever title

Is there anything better than coming home from a camping trip and having the woman you love, waiting to greet you with open arms? Definitely not. I was thinking about how great it was to come home this weekend and to find Jamie waiting for me, and I started pondering how awesome it will be when I die and I am welcomed into heaven. Now that will be wonderful. I'm so excited to finally meet Jesus face to face.

For those of you wanting the second half of the proposal to be posted, I'm sorry. I will try and post it on Wednesday. Tomorrow, of course, is Picture Tuesday and this is today's post, so the next available day is Wednesday. That's the plan for now. Enjoy your Halloween, this is the one night where it is okay to take candy from strangers, make it count.

Friday, October 28, 2005

This is just embarrassing

We had a hall event last night. My hall and my two sister halls went on a photo scavenger hunt. We gave them a list of things, like "give a stranger a noogie" or "everybody searching frantically for a 'lost' contact", and then had them take pictures of them. The three of us RA's disguised ourselves and became part of the hunt ourselves. Lots of points were given if you took a picture with one of the RA's. Although it was a lot of fun, I don't believe I will ever try on my costume again. Yes, that's me in the pink.

Afterwards, everyone came back to the banquet hall where we had ice cream and watched a slide show of all the pictures. It was pretty funny. Here are some funny ones:

Have a great weekend everybody.

Wednesday, October 26, 2005

Even All-State winners need help from the Big Guy

Volleyball season starts tonight for intramurals. I was a late pick-up for the team that I am on, but boy are they glad to have me. Does anyone else remember when the high school volleyball team that I captained took third place in the tournament? I do. (If anyone brings up the fact that there were only three teams in the league, you will be in a lot of trouble. That isn't an important detail.) I don't really know who all is on my team except for Jamie, but between the two of us, we bring a lot of experience to the squad. I'm predicting another fantastic, mind-blowing season.

On a more somber note, I had to sit and talk with one of my guys about some bad stuff that he had been doing. That was really scary for me. I tried to get a hold of him all day just so I could get it out of the way. Every time before I would go down to his room, I would pray a desperate prayer to God first because I know how insufficient I am. After praying, I would feel enough courage to go down and knock on the door. Five times that afternoon he wasn't home. The suspense was killing me. I finally ran into him at 9:30 last night. I was so nervous, I'm pretty sure I was shaking. I hate to confront people. We talked for about 20 minutes. God gave me strength and a conviction behind my words that I didn't think was possible. I think I was able to draw a hard line with him and yet still reassure him that I still love him because God wants me to and he's in my hall and that I will continue to pray for him. A lot of his excuses were pretty funny and I actually had to fight to not laugh at what he saying.

So God really came through for me last night. Again. He still hasn't failed me. Ever. When will I ever learn? Maybe I will ponder that as I ride the pine tonight during our volleyball game...

Tuesday, October 25, 2005

It's Tuesday, take a number

I'm feeling a lot better today. No more aching body, no more extreme sleepiness, just a little runny nose; so I guess I'm not quite up to 100% yet. But if you need anything, take a number and enjoy your Tuesday.

Monday, October 24, 2005

Making a list, checking it twice

Jamie and I have begun to create our guest list for the wedding. We have to go through all the people we know and decide if we can put them on the list. You would think that this would be fairly simple. Now I know how Santa Claus must feel every Christmas creating his list. It's not easy. We just don't have room to invite everyone. It would be much easier if we could just do a Naughty or Nice list.

The rest of the wedding stuff is progressing smoothly. We have a great place picked out for the ceremony. It's on a grassy hill right by a lake. Jamie is working on picking out colors for the wedding, trying to decide on her father-daughter dance song, picking out a wedding dress and all the hundreds of other things she does and right now my only job is to pick out the groomsmen. I'm a little overwhelmed by that.

I have RA dutying to do, passing out fliers, confronting people with issues, discussing alcohol, you know, the usual. But afterward I will get back to the really hard stuff of picking the guests. Santa, if you're reading this, keep up the hard work. I feel your anguish big guy.

Troubles in River City

For some reason I am unable to publish my latest post. That's why there hasn't been anything today so far. As soon as I can, I will have today's post up and readible. Until then, enjoy this little link. Have a great rest of the day.

Friday, October 21, 2005

Why do I have to be the bad cop?

I had to write up my first guy yesterday. That's the one thing I don't like about being an RA. I don't like policing the hall. I don't like the confrontation and I don't like the hurt feeling and I definitely don't like to see people get in trouble. But it had to be done. It was really disappointing. It was a guy I really like and it was hard for me to do, but it was alcohol related and I have to take a strong stand against that. My RD is gone for the weekend which means, in some sense, that I'm alone in this until he comes back (Res Life has been very supportive and so has my brother RA, but Ronnie is the one I would go to for advice on how to handle the situation). So I'm left to blaze my own trail on this one. I think I'm going to go talk to him today and tell him that what he did was wrong and very disappointing, but also remind him that I still love him and will continue to pray for him. Pray for God to give me wisdom as I deal with this situation. I have no idea what I'm doing.

(Just a little side note, I love that the cop on the right can barely keep the smile off of his face...)

Wednesday, October 19, 2005

The beginning of the beginning of the rest of our lives

Okay, so here's how the engagement thing went down. On Saturday, October 15th, Jamie and I went back home to visit our folks. We stopped at her house first and talked with her mom for a while before heading over to my house. Same thing. We hung out and talked to my folks for a little while. Around 3:30, I dropped Jame back off at her house and then I went back home to get started with the set up.

When my grandma arrived, we took everything over to the school and began to haul everything up the roof. This was very difficult. Most of the stuff was pretty heavy and the only way up was a tall ladder. We got everything up on the roof around 5 and then we left for AJ's to pick up some food. After we got the food, we brought that up to the roof too and then I left my mum and grandma to finish setting everything up while I went and got Jamie.

The whole afternoon my heart had been constantly racing, and it only got faster as I drove to her house. It's amazing she didn't know anything was up. We got back to my house around 6:30 and I suggested that we take a little walk. The sun had just gone down, so there was still some light left in sky. When I suggested that we go up to the roof of the school to look at the night sky, she quickly agreed. It took all of my effort to not run over there but to rather walk calmly and patiently.

When we got to the school, we found one of the gates open (imagine that) and then started to make our way over to the cafeteria. We saw a light on in the cafeteria so we paused to see if anybody was there. Just then, we saw my grandma through the window. Since Jame thought we were sneaking in, I pretended that we needed to leave because we didn't want anyone to know we were there. I made some comment about how it seemed weird that my grandma would be working so late on a Saturday night (My grandma does indeed work at the school so it wasn't too weird to see her working, it was just that it was late). I suggested that we keep walking around the neighborhood a little more and then come back and try again. Maybe my grandma was about to leave.

When we came back the second time, the lights were off and Grandma was gone. So we crept through the darkness to the cafeteria door, which had also been conveniently left unlocked. Once inside, we made our way to the ladder up to the roof and climbed up...

(More to come later on today I hope, but maybe tomorrow)

Tuesday, October 18, 2005

Rainy Tuesday

For those of you who live in Phoenix, enjoy a beautiful rainy day. Everyone else, well, you can have a good day too.

Monday, October 17, 2005

Jamie has got some new bling

In case you haven't heard yet, I asked Jamie to marry me on Saturday night. The proposal went perfectly thanks to tons of help from my mum, my grandma and Phatty. She said yes, praise God, so that made everything even better. The date has been set for May 13th, 2006. Wahoo. Maybe on Wednesday I'll write out the story of how it all happened. I've posted this pic before, but here's a pic of us, the future Mr. and Mrs. Benjamin Ihms.

Thursday, October 13, 2005

Button mashing, inconsiderate, no good jerk

So yeah. I decided not to talk about God's faithfulness in my life today. Don't be mad though. I haven't cancelled that post, I just thought it would fit better on Monday. If you disagree, wait 'till Monday's post and then leave a comment about how wrong I was to delay talking about how good God is to me.

Anyway, today's post has to do with being a good roommate. Sometimes I'm not. You see, last night my roommate came home from Campus Crusade over at ASU and waltzed into my room. Being the wonderful roommate that I am, I continued to mash buttons as I played a video game on my XBOX. I did manage a "Hey. How was it?" But for some odd reason, I was truly more interested in that video game than in my relationship with my roommate. Kinda pathetic. Jon sat down next to me and started to tell me about his night. I responded with the appropriate grunts and nods, but I wasn't really listening. It wasn't until later, as I lay in bed thinking, that I remembered some of the stuff he said. Whoah nelly. He and I are going to have a talk later today. I can tell you that. (It's a good talk. Don't worry). So anyway, Jon, if you ever read this, I'm sorry. I'm a jerk.

And on that happy note, have a great Thursday everyone.

Wednesday, October 12, 2005

Now with stress free goodness

I just got back with hanging out with one of my favorite guys in the whole world. And as we talked, he mentioned that he has a couple of tests coming up and he's a little stressed about it. That got me thinking: I'm taking 16 credits this semester but for the most part, school has provided me with very little stress. In fact, it hasn't even made my life very busy or hectic. Isn't God good? He has given me a ton of extra time to put into ministering to the students on campus without my school work suffering. Even better is that I stay busy, which I like to do, but I don't have much stress to accompany all that, which would eventually lead to burnout. So even though I pull 15 hour work days, I don't have to bring too much of it home with me. I think a large part of why things seem to be going so well is because I'm learning to trust God to be faithful in everything. But, more on that tomorrow, right now I need to sleep. I'm running on less than 5 hours of sleep right now.

Monday, October 10, 2005

Praise God for Potts

I finally have a mentor. Some of you may know of my frustration in not having anyone pouring into my life this semester. All my profs from last semester are gone, my Bible study leader moved to Oklahoma and I just started going to a new church where I don't know anybody but Jamie. So I have been feeling quite alone as far as spiritual wisdom is concerned. As a leader on campus, I am constantly pouring myself into people, but I have had no one to pour into me. Finally, in desperation, I called up a man who has an amazing gift for speaking and is very godly, but who before yesterday, couldn't have picked me out of a crowd of 20.

I am so excited that he said yes. It was kind of backwards, me asking and him accepting. Kinda like the girl proposing to the guy. But he said yes all the same. His name is Chris Potts and he has taught at SALT, our metro Phoenix ministry, and spoke at our Bible study leadership retreat this summer. He seemed genuinely excited to mentor me, so I think this will be a great opportunity for both of us. For me to learn, and for him to impart some of his amazing wisdom. Praise God for answered prayers.

Thursday, October 06, 2005

We have a winner (hopefully)

Praise God! Jamie and I have finally found a church. We think. We have only been once and we loved it. But we are going to keep our minds open just in case that was a weird week. So anyway, the church is called Oneplace and is in the middle of the Arts District in downtown Phoenix. It caters mostly to artists and so the building doubles as an art gallery on First Fridays.

Nearly everyone in the church is younger, mostly college-aged and ranging up to early 30's I'd say. The worship was passionate and well put together. The sermon was biblically based and the theology seemed sound. The people were friendly and the atmosphere was pleasant. We think we have found our new home. Keep praying.

Tuesday, October 04, 2005

No parking

Tuesday = Pictures!

Happy update

Thanks for the prayers everyone. Jamie and I are back on track. We have had a rough couple of days but God is good. He has blessed me with such a wonderful girlfriend who has forgiven me and loves me despite my weaknesses. It will take some work to continue on, but we are both committed to this. God willing, we'll make it.

Monday, October 03, 2005

To stupidity and beyond

"Only two things are infinite - the universe and human stupidity," Einstein once remarked, "and I'm not sure about the former." I'm living proof of the latter. Without going into the gory details, let's just say that Jamie and I had an argument last night; one that left me wondering if I had thrown away the love of the most wonderful woman in the world. It was one of those arguments where I started off angry and hurt and ended with her walking off in tears. Those of you who know me know that one of the things I hate most is to see a woman cry, even more so to make a woman cry. But when it's the love of my life that I have made cry, well that's the worst feeling in the world. If you were to look on her AIM profile, it still says, "Ben is my hero!" After last night, I'm surprised that it's still there. If I were her, that's probably the first thing I would have gotten rid of. My hero status is definitely about to be revoked.

So why am I airing my dirty laundry? Because I could use some serious prayer. I have been praying that God would smite me. But you could pray for healing in the relationship, if there's anything salvageable there. And maybe that my stupidity would reach a limit.

Wednesday, September 28, 2005

Does anyone really care about round and wrinkled peas?

I just took a Genetics test. We have been studying crosses between pea plants with round and wrinkled seeds until we look at peas and automatically start analyzing their genotypes and phenotypes. So unless you are really interested in genetics, I would recommend you skip to the bottom paragraph because this is about to get boring. Basically the whole test was on mitosis, the production of somatic cells through cytokinesis, meiosis, the production of germ cells through two cell divisions, chromosome structure, with regards to size, banding, and centromere position (metacentric, submetacentric, acrocentric, and telocentric), basic Mendelian Genetics, segregation and independent assortment, and how Mendel's laws works in the real world as far as pleotropy and epistasis. We also had to be able to work punnet squares, calculate probability and do test crosses and back crosses and know a little about sex-linked traits and the affect of multiple sex chromosomes on Drosophila. (I told you it was going to be boring)

It was our first exam of the year, the prof is new to Canyon and we had just gone over five chapters in class. There was no way to know what the test was going to be like. I assumed the worst and studied everything, read the book repeatedly, and quizzed with friends. It's a good thing I did. It wasn't an extremely tough test, but she expected us to know most everything and get all the correct answers too. So now my brain is fried, I have genetics pouring out of my ears and I am walking around like a zombie on drugs. Tomorrow I should be back to normal. We'll see.

Tuesday, September 27, 2005

Will the madness never end?

The oil and gas industry blames the hurricane for their jacked up prices. I blame greed. I'd show them a thing or two, but I just filled up my car yesterday with SUPER+ and I'm having a little trouble walking right now...

Monday, September 26, 2005

Where'd my time go?

Well today was a long day. I have been going for 13 hours straight. I had a small 15 minute break, which I used to take a shower, but other than that it has been a busy day. Not bad, just busy.

We had a football game today. I had two touchdown catches and a couple of really long receptions. It went really well, except for the losing part, it would have been perfect. Our defense just couldn't stop their offense. Oh well. We play again tomorrow. That should be fun.

Sorry for this pathetic excuse of a post. My brain is shot for today. Hopefully the rest of this week will see some higher quality writing. Hopefully. At least tomorrow is picture Tuesday. That always excites me.

Friday, September 23, 2005

Baby, You're amazing

I have the most wonderful, beautiful girlfriend in the whole world. That's all I have to say today. She is amazing and absolutely gorgeous. And she's pretty attached to me. I'm pretty blessed. I know. Wahoo.

Have a great weekend everybody. See ya Monday.

Thursday, September 22, 2005

And there was chapel on the twenty-first day. And it was pretty good.

So chapel wasn't as empty as I expected. There was a really good turnout. As for the quality of chapel, it was definitely better than last year. The sound guy didn't have the sound quite right for the band. It was really light on vocals and heavy on electric guitar. The quality of the band was great though. From what I could tell, they did a fine job. The speaker was a little long-winded and didn't use the Bible as much as could be hoped for, but it wasn't a bad little talk. There were just a few too many stories and not quite enough of God's words. The important thing is, it went well and nobody walked away offended. This should be a better year for Canyon spiritually.

Wednesday, September 21, 2005

Football and chapel: Oddly enough they are related

Intramurals started on Monday here at GCU. The football season has kicked off. My team, The Eagles of Doom, played on Tuesday. The team is mostly made of freshmen guys with a sophomore and me. With that said, we didn't do too bad. Sure the final score was 45-12. Sure we didn't score in the second half at all. Sure we looked a little sluggish, but all in all it was a moral victory. We all showed up wearing the right colors. Joking aside, I had fun. It's a good chance to get some exercise and hang out with the guys. Our next game is Thursday, I'm hoping we can score 3 touchdowns this time.

Today is the first day of the new and improved chapel at Canyon. We're hoping it went under an extreme make-over, because, quite frankly, last year the chapel was deplorable. Meh. It's only once a week. As long as no one does an interpretive dance to Michael Jackson's Thriller this year, I'll be happy. Most likely it will be like our football game, full of potential but just not quite up to par. I'll give a full review on chapel in tomorrow's post. O ya. That has got you wanting to read again tomorrow. If you want to skip tomorrow, I understand, I'll see you Friday for a breakdown of the football game. Okay. Maybe I'll see you on Monday.

Tuesday, September 20, 2005

Monday is finally over

Hopefully a blogging trend is starting here. This is officially two days in a row!!! Yay me. Happy Picture Tuesday.

Think your day sucks? I bet this little guy is a tad embarrassed. At least he got a sucker.

Monday, September 19, 2005

The tank is half empty

As I sit here looking at my weekly schedule, it seems pretty full. Between classes, meetings and events I can usually count on being busy from 9 - 6 every day. Some days it isn't that bad, and some days it is worse. The good news is that my week isn't usually very intense, just busy. What makes the week long though is that I don't have church to look forward to at the end of the week.

Jamie and I still haven't found a church to call home yet. We were semi going to Open Door Fellowship and we may still end up there, but I have to believe that there is something better out there on this side of town. I really liked the pastor there, John Lynch, but there was something about the rest of the service that wasn't right. I don't quite have a handle on what is wrong, but I have a bad feeling about it. And then yesterday Jamie and I went to North Phoenix Baptist. Wow. That's a big church. Too big. Also, the whole service seemed like a performance rather than worship of God. The people up front were there to entertain and keep us occupied for the hour and a half that we "had" to be there. There were other problems, but in a nutshell, we won't be going back.

Pray for us that we would find a church. Jamie and I are both very active in leadership on campus at GCU and are constantly pouring ourselves into others. But you can't pour into other people if nobody is pouring into you. Jamie has some older, mature Christian women on campus who are pouring into her, but I have no one. I am the old guy on campus. Pray for me.

Tuesday, September 13, 2005

A pic a Tuesday keeps the doctor away

Today I'm gonna give out something extra special because it's also my birthday: TWO PICTURES!!! Yes, you heard right, Two pics on Picture Tuesday. It has never happened before, but I'm feeling generous

This is me and the girlfriend at 80's skate night.

And this one, well, I guess bikers aren't very well thought of in this town.

Friday, September 09, 2005

Who you gonna call? Me.

I love being an RA. It has been two weeks now and it really is a lot of fun. The one thing that I wasn't expecting was the intensity. It's really not a hard job, nor is it unpleasant. I really do enjoy hanging out with my guys and serving them. The thing is, it's a 24-7 job. Even when I sleep, I'm still an RA. I was taking a very nice nap on Wednesday, very peaceful and relaxing, when one of my guys came in to the room to ask me a question. I had been up 'till two the night before and had gotten only 5 or 6 hours of sleep. I just wanted to rest. I did not want to be answering questions about if he had to attend the mandatory hall meeting. But I had to and I had to do it pleasantly and with a good attitude. God has really given me strength to support my guys so far, I could not do it without him. But I cannot take a break on campus. I have to leave to be off duty. Because as soon as I think that I might be alone and free of responsibility, someone finds me.

Before the I give the wrong idea, I need to say that I love being an RA. It really is more than a job to me, it's a lifestyle. I love interacting with the guys and helping them out and being their friend. It's not always easy but I wouldn't trade where I'm at for the world.

Tuesday, September 06, 2005

Any fool can do this job

Yay for long weekends. Sorry for my lack of posting, but at least it's Tuesday and that means a new pic. Enjoy.

Friday, September 02, 2005


I just got some more pics of 80's skate night. If you have a weak stomache, avoid the rest of this post, it could get ugly.

Left: The Village People reunited

Below: I'm the leather enthusiast. Take a look at my pants. I found those bad boys at Goodwill for $4. They are women's size 11 just in case you want to buy me something for Christmas...

Meet the Parks

My roommates this year are pretty awesome guys. Yup, the twins are back. Jon and Stephen Parks, brothers at large. Haha. They aren't really twins and they aren't really related. They both happened to share a room together last year with Matty and I. Since we were brothers with the same last name, we figured that Jon and Stephen have the same last name so they should be brothers too. They don't look even remotely alike.

Jon is quiet and thoughtful. He is a Bible study leader again this year and I know he will be a great influence on the guys in the hall. Some people think that he is shy. Nope. When he gets around people he is comfortable with, he's a little crazy.

Stephen is the exact opposite. He is extremely outgoing and can often be quite outrageous. But he is a great guy also and definitely keeps life interesting. When he gets around people he is comfortable with, he usually settles down a little and can be very philosophical and deep.

It's a pretty good combo for a room. We have the extremes and me, the middle man. It makes for an interesting college experience.

Thursday, September 01, 2005

Is anyone else a little confused?

I love comments. They are probably my favorite thing about blogging. Here's another that really just made me laugh. If you don't understand the slang, vanilla basically means unexciting or conventional.

you title your blog "BE RADICAL"
After reading your article, I say this with great respect[ i really do]
you give and ENTIRELY new meaning to the word VANILLA ..
good luck.

Thank you for that. Usually when people call me boring, they do it with such little respect. I appreciate your honesty.

[Sigh] I have been over this before, and I'm sure it will come up again, the blog is titled "Be Radical" not because I'm some crazy, partying maniac. Be radical is my call to action to live a lifestyle radically different from the rest of society. Be radical is my desire for my life to not be all about me, for pride and self-centeredness to not be characteristics of who I am. Be radical is my way of saying I love without prejudice or condition, I have been given a second chance at life and I'm not going to waste it.

So, in order to avoid further confusion, I have decided to change the tagline of the blog: "Be Radical: not your ordinary vanilla." (Not really, but the tagline will be changing within the next day or two) Keep the comments coming...

Macho, macho man

Welcome Week is in full swing here at Grand Canyon. Every night of this week we have had an event to get people out of their rooms and meet new friends. Last night was 80's Skate Night. Basically, everyone goes down to Goodwill or Savers and buys the ugliest clothes they can find and wears them while skating in a circle for two hours. It's a lot of fun.

So the four of us guy RA's and two of our friends decided to dress up as the Village People. Yes, they started off in the 70's but they did release some songs in the 80's, so they were fair game. It was pretty scary how it all worked out. Each of us fit our characters pretty perfectly. I'm proud to admit that I was chosen to be the "leather enthusiast". All of our costumes combined cost somewhere between 150 and 175 dollars (I personally spent $25 on my outfit). But we won the prize for best overall dressed so we each got $25 to Harkins Theatres. So it all worked out in the end. I only have one pic right now of last night, but if you check back a little later tonight I should have some more up in this post.