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Posts Tagged ‘postaweek2011’

I don’t know why I did it.

But really, I do.  I’ve been saying I’d do it for weeks now, for months really, but I could never bring myself to it.  And then, yesterday evening I went to search and rescue training, and when I got home, I felt like it had to be done.  So I did.

I went running.

I’m using the Couch to 5K running plan.  Google it if you’ve never heard of it, there’s TONS of information about it on the internet.  Basically, it’s aimed at getting you from not being able to run any significant length of time to being able to run an entire 5k race in a little over two months.  It uses intervals, starting you out running 60 seconds followed by 90 seconds of walking, and then slowly weans you away from walking…

As I found out last night, I’m unfortunately a bit more of a couch potato than the plan was designed for.  I had no problem running for 60 seconds at a time, but after a few reps I just couldn’t keep it up that long.  I ended up finishing the workout but without nearly as much running as I should have done.

But while some people may find that as a discouragement, I find it as ENcouragement.  The fact that I couldn’t even keep up with the “Day 1” workout when I started will make it that much more satisfying when I run the 5k at the end of it all.  And so I plan to stick with the Day 1 workout for at least a week or two until I can actually do it and THEN I’ll move on.

Even though I couldn’t keep up with the amount of running, even though the skinny people who were WALKING were giving me funny looks for sweating my butt off, even though I’m a bit sore the next day, it felt AMAZING to get out and do some actual cardio exercise outside of hiking/biking and I can’t wait to go for my next run.

In other news, if you’re the type of person who’s interested in following my OTHER blog, Jono the Lutheran, you’ll be interested to know that there are now THREE posts over there.  I’m still sort of working on covering the bases as far as giving everyone the background on a lot of stuff, but I feel it’s important to give that story before moving on.  So check it out if you haven’t taken a look yet.

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Once again, I’ve failed at the PostAWeek Challenge, but those of you who have been following along will attest to the fact that I actually have been blogging more regularly, so that’s a good thing.  I’ll go into a bit more depth about a few of the things going on in my life and in Morgantown in another post, BUT…

I wanted to take 30 seconds to promote my new blog, Jono the Lutheran.  Basically, I wanted a way to keep folks at my home church and here in Morgantown updated about what’s going on with my internship, and what’s going on with me wanting to be a Pastor, but I didn’t want them to have to wade through the type of random stuff I post here, nor did I want you to have to read through regular updates about my church on here, unless of course you’d like to read them.

Regardless, my new blog, which is all about me, my internship, my wanting to be a Pastor, etc. is called Jono the Lutheran and you can read it at: http://www.LutheranJono.wordpress.com

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Rumor has it the rapture is going to happen tonight, and the world will go to hell-in-a-handbasket in short order…  There MAY however, still be time to arrange for the salvation of your pets by atheists who plan to make a killing off of Jesus’ second coming.

Being a musician…  I can’t help but find musical symbolism in such a day as this, and so it is with great honor that I present to you:

“The Last Music You’ll Ever Hear: A Playlist for The End of the World As We Know It”

  1. We start off with the “title track” of our playlist.  A classic by R.E.M. “It’s the End of the World.” Do YOU feel fine?
  2. Now if I told you our second song would be a Johnny Cash song, you’d probably immediately assume I’d be talking about “Ring of Fire” but Cash had a song slightly more appropriate for Jesus’ Second Coming tomorrow, “When the Man Comes Around.”
  3. And what would an end of the world playlist be without music from one of the best movie scores of all time.  A soundtrack from a movie that just so happens to be about the end of the world, Armageddon.
  4. As the world descends into chaos, you may want to “Summon the Heroes” with this John Williams classic written as the theme for the 1996 Summer Olympics and performed by the Boston Pops.
  5. I felt like this song by Bright Eyes needed to make the list, if for no other reason than that it’s a really cool song.
  6. Our next two songs are about being comfortable with your impending doom.  Don’t be afraid of death, and “Don’t Fear the Reaper.”
  7. And the reason you SHOULD be comfortable about the end of the world?  Because We’ll ALL Go Together When We Go…
  8. Finally, you’ll recognize the last song from the movie Requiem for a Dream.  Unlike, the other videos that I merely linked you to, I felt it was necessary to directly embed this one.  The video itself is an elaborate “collage” of video clips from various apocalypse films.  It’s pretty epic:
Music is an essential part of everything we do. Like puppetry, music has an abstract quality which speaks to a worldwide audience in a wonderful way that nourishes the soul. -Jim Henson

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Sometimes my life is weird.

Some times I exaggerate the weirdness of my life.

But today, there is no exaggeration when I say I believe I witnessed some sort of crazy military convoy the other day…

Saturday morning, I was on Interstate 68, coming back from the Cheat Fest 5K.  As I was getting off 68 at the Pierpont Rd. exit, returning into Morgantown, I noticed a group of navy blue vehicles just ahead of me on the off-ramp.  Noticing that they were traveling together, I thought “that’s kinda cool” and pulled out my iPhone to snap some pictures.

At the back end of the convoy, you can see one of the trucks/trailers and an unmarked navy blue ambulance, both with government plates.

Thinking that this was possibly one of the Mine Safety & Health Administration’s federal mine rescue teams, I followed them into the gas station to get a better look:

The suburban at the front of the convoy. Look carefully and you’ll notice a brush guard on the front which had LEDs and a heavy duty winch mounted on it.

There were two of these trucks. Ford crew cab pickups with utilities bodies, each pulling large 20 foot+ box trailers.

So as I’m circling around the gas station, expecting to see some type of rescue personnel or coal miner-esque looking folks, I get a big surprise as guys in military uniforms start getting out of all the vehicles.

Close-up of the ambulance. While this could be used for anything, it definitely has the box lights that are a standard requirement for ambulances. Notice the soldiers outside.

As I’m pulling out, I notice LED warning lights and a siren speaker in the grill of the trucks with the trailers.

Look closely at the grill of this vehicle… Notice the four white spots above the FORD logo? Those are LED warning lights, like you’d find on an emergency vehicle.  There was also a siren speaker visible way back there.

All in all there was the suburban, two of the utility trucks pulling trailers and an ambulance, all unmarked with matching navy blue paint jobs, all with federal gov’t license plates, and all seemingly equipped with lights and sirens.  While I’d love to cook up some elaborate conspiracy theory, and while my imagination certainly has given me a few possibilities, I just can’t think of any reason for the military to be traveling around in unmarked non-military-looking vehicles equipped with lights & sirens.

In all honesty, I’m really kind of intrigued, so if someone DOES have an idea of what this might be, I’m all ears.  Either way, it’s pretty cool… Just really strange.

EDIT: I’ve gotten a lot of strange comments on this post, and something like 65 views today alone.  So, I figured it was important to clear up some misconceptions.

I’m a first responder and have had several opportunities to work with the fine gentlemen who operate these vehicles over the past two years.  And while I initially thought they were suspicious, I’m not aware of exactly what they are.  These vehicles belong to the West Virginia National Guard Civil Support Team, which is a national guard unit dealing specifically with Weapons of Mass Destruction.  If there were a WMD event, these would be the guys to respond, and additionally they do preparedness as well.  It’s not uncommon to see them operating at mass-gatherings such as sporting events and concerts.

So, it’s settled.  They’re not transporting aliens or anything of the like.  They’re just soldiers helping to keep the homefront safe.

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Time to move out.

It’s an inevitable process.

You move into your apartment, dorm or house with the exact amount of stuff you need.  Exactly one car load, perfectly packed, the right amount of clothes and everything you need to actually furnish it.

And then slowly but surely, it explodes.  A year’s worth of free (or mostly free) t-shirts, new DVDs, books, electronics etc and suddenly your room isn’t quite as tidy, won’t pack into as few boxes as it did when you moved in.

Maybe this means you need to plan on getting a storage unit, or another vehicle to help move, or to throw away stuff that may be perfectly good.

But why throw away things that are still useful?

The United Way of Monongalia & Preston Counties came up with a solution to this problem for college students several years ago with their Blue & Gold Mine sale.  All across campus and across town, they’ve set up storage containers, “Donation Stations.”  Simply take your unwanted items, whether it be clothes, furniture, electronics or what have you and drop it off at a donation station.  And then, the Saturday after graduation, they set it all up at the football stadium and have a massive garage sale of sorts, with all proceeds benefiting the United Way and their charitable projects.

I personally dropped off a mini shelf that I haven’t ever really used and my annual t-shirt purge (fifteen t-shirts) yesterday and encourage you to do the same.

So, if you’re movin’ out and need to get rid of stuff, and are interested in supporting a good cause, consider taking it to one of the donation stations.

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Although I’d imagine most of the people who regularly read my blog are already well aware of this event tonight, I figured it was worth it to put in a plug for these guys.

The High Street Jazz Band is a local band founded by my fraternity brother John Fitzmaurice.  They’re very much a dixieland inspired group, playing unique improv jazz, not in a concert setting, but on the streets.  Every weekend, these guys go out on High Street and form their own mini-parade from the campus down past the clubs and bars and back.  When they perform, they collect money, but rather than going into the performer’s pockets, it gets reinvested into the band, and otherwise invested into the community by donations to local organizations.

I am proud to say that three of the band members, John Fitzmaurice, Steve Sabino and Dr. Larry Schwab are Sinfonians.  It’s great to see how these guys advance The Object of Phi Mu Alpha Sinfonia through public performance of american music.

TONIGHT, HSJB is doing a special performance on the Mountainlair Free Speech Circle from 7pm-10pm, with the purpose of this performance to bring awareness and raise funds for arts in our community.  Money raised will be donated to Morgantown High School’s fine arts program.  This fundraising project is being coordinated by yet another Sinfonian (one of our newest, no less) Brian Roberts who will be joined tonight by several other brothers in his efforts to raise money.

They even got some pretty great press from the Daily Athenaeum, WVU’s campus newspaper.

SO, if you have the time, come out to the Mountainlair tonight and hear some great live music, and show YOUR support for the arts.

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In the past few days, I’ve gone from wearing to jeans, to very nearly needing snowpants, to shorts, and now back to jeans…  This weather is ridiculous, BUT, as I walked to the PRT today, it occurred to me, that maybe it’s a God-send.

It’s April folks! We have three and a half weeks of class left…  Two and a half if you don’t count dead week.  We’re almost done with the school year, but it doesn’t feel like it, because it’s been cold, because we’ve had all of a handful of days where you could go outside without a jacket, and even fewer where shorts were acceptable.

If Spring had come early and stayed, we might be at the point of wearing shorts and t-shirts everyday, with dozens of people taking time after classes to sun themselves at “Towers Beach.”  But if that were the case, we’d all be extremely burnt out by now, ready to soak up the sun and enjoy summer.

I dunno, I’m random, and rambling, but like I said, I’m thankful that it’s still chilly, it will just make me that much more grateful when I finish my last exam and am able to enjoy the summer.

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