Friday, May 27, 2005

Bob's Your Uncle

The unthinkable happened today in England... it was warm. Yesterday it got so warm that I had to shed my sweater(jumper) on my bike ride home. But today it got up to 80! Don't worry. The high tomorrow is supposed to be around 62 and in the 50's after that. I almost had reason to wear one of the two short sleeve shirts I have here (aside from T-shirts of course).

Speaking of weather... Mary and I were watching the news the other night and the weather--uh--person said we should take a long look at the weather map because it would be the last we'd see of it on the BBC. The next day they changed to a 3-D map. For normal people, this would not matter, but, fortunately the UK has plenty of abnormal people. See where we get it?

I commented about Mark Goodacre's accepting a position at Duke the other day. Well other folks weighed in as well. Of note here is Michael Pahl, a Canadian who teaches at Prairie Bible Institute in Alberta (north of Montana). Michael will be bringing his wife and kids over later this year to fulfill his required stay in Birmingham as part of the external PhD program (much as I have done). Michael's supervisor is also Mark Goodacre, and it looks as if Michael's arrival in the UK will coincide nicely with Mark's departure. But, Michael, you and your family are in our prayers. At least he can take comfort in the knowledge that the winter over here will be easier on them than it was us. And it appears that Michael plans to blog his time here... and call it the Anglo-file, too. Here, here!

Mary and I check yahoo every night to see what's on TV. Tonight something interesting is appearing on Channel 5 apparently... The Patriot. At first, I thought it had to be the Steven Seagal one, not the Mel Gibson one. Apparently, the folks at Yahoo couldn't decide so they put this description. FWIW, the Seagal Patriot is on now... don't imagine the Brits care too much for the Gibson one.

Now, for the part most of you care about... Helen pics:

Most fun part of the day: bathtime
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Using the mouth keeps the hands free
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After bath, her favorite game (with her favorite towel): Where's baby Helen?
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The same game at another time and with her coat:
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Wednesday, May 25, 2005

4 More Americans

I've been waiting to blog about this until I knew he was letting word out. Of course, I figured it would be in a more discrete way than via the internet, but it does save him having to send out a hundred emails. My supervisor here in Birmingham, Dr. Mark Goodacre, likes me so much that he's following me back to America. He won't make it all the way to Tennessee, but will stop in Durham, North Carolina where he'll be a prof in the religion dept. of Duke University. He and his family will be making the move sometime later this year. Yes, this will affect my research, but thankfully Mark has agreed to continue to be an external supervisor and it will be nice to have him just one state away. Of course he'll still be around 514 miles away, roughly the same distance as Glasgow to Bude (Cornwall) -- see graphical representation below with the Murfreesboro to Durham map rotated 90 degrees clockwise.

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Of course, they'll be less than 2 hours to the mountains or to the beach.

I'd like you to submit advice for these soon-to-be Americans using my comments link. I'm sure they'd appreciate it.

Monday, May 23, 2005

27 More Days To Get Knighted

One of my secret ambitions in coming here was to do something honorable (for my UK friends, "honourable" with the usless 'u') enought to get knighted. Its looking less and less likely to happen... probably because of the whole "Don't blame me, I voted for the House of Hanover" bumper sticker thing.

Thanks to almost all of you who commented about Helen's "Tickle, etc." (didn't know she knew Latin, huh?). I'll handle responses in order:

1. I believe Mary Joyce H. is the most chronologically advanced of all my readers, and for that she gets a bouquet.

2. For Tim B.: I have a Creative Muvo Tx USB 2.o 256 MB mp3 player. It cost around $80 U.S., or around 107 kiwi dollars, including shipping. I highly recommend it. Currently, mine has over 5 hours and 40 minutes of voice record time left on it (even with the 1+ hours of music on it). Perfect for recording classes. Its also a handy memory stick. It looks like this:
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3. No, Jon, the picture is of the star of one of my favorite (insert usless 'u' after 'o') TV shows of the 90's, Parker Lewis Can't Lose. If you' ever update your blog you could put in obscure stuff like this.

Sunday, May 22, 2005

Tickle, tickle, tickle

Today was a fun day at church. We had a crowd of around 60, which is the most since we've been here. We enjoyed a fellowship meal afterwards (what we call a potluck back home). We took chili, biscuits, and a pudding pie. The high point of the day was when, in the midst of the congregational singing, Helen belted out her favorite phrase. She has quite a vocabulary for an 11-month-old, but most of all she likes to say "Tickle, tickle, tickle...." especially during that quite time between hymn verses. I thought you might like to hear her say it, so here's a short clip of her favorite phrase said at my prompting. BTW, our little mp3 player makes the best recordings, don't you think?

Back so soon

To make up for lost time, here I am blogging a few hours after my last post.

I forgot to mention the best "Star Wars" parody I've ever seen which can be viewed here.

I must add this disclaimer - I'm not much on the global advantages of organic farming. Here's an article that lays out some reasons, with the most important part being "Organic food costs more because average yields are 20-50% lower than those from conventional farms. Its inefficiency is highly relevant to the hungry and the poor... In the words of the Indian biologist CJ Prakash, its only contribution to sustainable agriculture will be 'to sustain poverty and malnutrition"' But, anyway, Grocery Store Wars is still hilarious.

Derek Sanderson is a madman!