December 31, 2003

Las Vegas, Days 7-11

It snowed last night and when I woke up the rooftops and front "lawns" (there's no grass.. it's just gravel) was covered in snow. My family had never seen snow in Vegas so it was a treat for everyone. Surprisingly I heard it's warm in Toronto today. As if the cold weather has made its way towards me and is chasing me.

Not alot has gone on since I last posted. I've finished 3 computers games. Halo, Tron 2.0, and I just finished Call of Duty a few moments ago. Of the three, Tron was the most fun and interesting.

It was Madame Toussad's, not Tussan. A-Mei was in town, she performed at the.. Rio? I don't remember now. I didn't go. For a brief 1-2 months I was a fan. But not anymore.

My grandfather went through some weird stages, a few days ago his face became very red and it was like he was having a fever, or possibly even a minor stroke. For a good 10 minutes he had food in his mouth and he wasn't chewing or even speaking, although he was still responding to us. Then yesterday he started crying when he wanted more milk. My dad was a little scared but he poured him some more and he stopped crying.

Yesterday we went to a sushi restaurant (buffet) called Blue Wave. $22/person (ouch!). My brother went there for his birthday a few months ago, and threw up afterwards because he ate so much. Since then he'd been raving about the restaurant and how I should go. So we went. It was really disappointing. It turns out that they "ran out" of salmon. Imagine, sushi with no salmon. How devastating!

I got a good pic of the billboard. There is also another ad, that says 'reverse vasectomy'. The funny thing is it also says "guaranteed or your money back". Hahah..

There are a lot of Hummers in Vegas. I've seen at least 40. Also a lot of Cadillac Escalade's, you know, the big trucks that all the big stars drive. And quite a few Corvettes. No sup-ed up Civics here.


My heart sank when I received news of Eric. I was both surprised and deeply saddened. It didn't fully sink in until last night I was lying in bed thinking about how awful it must be for Nicole, I had trouble sleeping, thinking about how she must feel during this ordeal. For him, I pray he isn't in pain or turmoil. I have no idea what the person goes through during a coma. Is it a sleep state, or is it a dream state? Is he constantly trying to wake up and being unable to, or is he completely unaware of it? Mostly I pray for Nicole and his sister and parents. It is the worst feeling when you want to help someone and feel helpless because there's nothing you can do.

December 26, 2003

Happy Birthday, Jesus!

Today we all got up pretty late (8:30am). We all wake up fairly early here because the house is brand new and there are no blinds, so when the sun comes out, it gets way too bright.

We went to The Orleans hotel to watch Lord of the Rings: Return of the King. It was pretty good. I cried a few times, all tears of joy. They changed a lot of things from the books, but it was still pretty good. The audience applauded after Legolas' big oliphant performance. Also just before the movie started a perky mom yelled out "MERRY CHRISTMAS" to everyone. Americans rock. There's no "happy holidays" out here. It's Christmas time, plain and simple.

Yesterday we went to the Christmas service at South Hills Church Community, where my family normally worships. It was a packed house. They rent out the gym at a school called Bill Carter. I'm not sure who Bill Carter is.. The service was quite good.. everyone was all dressed up. I was in my normally ghetto travelling clothing! Haha. Come to think of it, all my clothes are pretty ghetto. Maybe I need a change in wardrobe..

Anyway after LOTR we went to the Venetian hotel on the strip. My bro got us 4 free tickets to see Madame Tussan's Wax Museum. I'll post pics after I get home. They were really realistic!

By the time we got home, it was 6pm, too late to cook and my grandparents were starving. So we hurried out to the nearest place to eat. Unfortunately, it was Silverton's Hotel Casino. Their buffet has got to be the worst buffet I have ever eaten. I was starving, and yet when i got my plate and went to get food, I was totally stumped. It was worse than a school cafeteria.. $14/person for pure crap. That's US dollars..

Oh, for Christmas I got a new pair of shoes. Nike walkers.. pretty nice. They look a big goofy but they're really comfortable!

December 24, 2003

Las Vegas, Days 2-5

Las Vegas is a fun city, but really only *fun* if you're a non-believer going on a wild gambling, drinking and sexapade. Of course then for me, it's just the bright lights and being with family. And laughing at the hilarious sex billboards. One of them which I still haven't gotten a picture of, is this giant white billbard with the title "", with the caption "it's easier than you think" underneath. Haha..

I saw Roy's buddy, (the white tiger) at The Mirage, The Bellagio, Caesar Palace, Treasure Island. They're all just hotels with casino's and expensive shows which I can't afford. Outside along the strip, there's funny little latino guys handing out "business" cards, which show naked girls and phone numbers. The Bellagio has a fountain that's supposed to move around with a song that is playing, but I went during the day and that show only goes during the night. Also at the Mirage there is a water/show volcano, which also runs at night. Treasure Island has a big pirate ship with scantily clad women dancing on it. Also at night.

I'm hoping to catch it all one of these days.. and get good pictures.

Oh yeah, I bought a new digital camera. Olympus Stylus 400. I was just going to buy the 300 but my dad told me "don't be cheap, Brian". I also got a 256 mb card for it.. The camera is almost the same as my old one, so no learning curve..

What else.. I went to a few buffets now. The food is really cheap here, but the food is also really bad quality. Whereas in Toronto when you stop eating at a buffet because you feel satisfyingly full, in Vegas you stop because you think you're gonna be sick (before you're full). It's a different sensation.

I saw Red Rock Canyon, on our way to visit my dad at work yesterday. It was breathtaking. Massive mountainss of red rock surrounded by white, and regular grey. While I was standing at one of the lookout points I started to sing "Wondrous Works". It goes:

Looking at His Wonderous Works
I stand, Amazed in awe.
How can any person doubt that
He is God?

Since nature sings out its praises
That I ought to know
To share in this grand worship to the Lord

Well.. those are probably wrong.. but close? My dad works in this tiny little shack, while his real office is still being built. The back of the office has a small jail cell. Pretty cool..

There are more "In-n-out" and "Jack In The Box" burger joints than McD's here.. Btw, in In-N-Out burgers are amazing...

December 20, 2003

Las Vegas - Day 1

The flight left a little late because they had to de-ice the wings. But all in all it was a good flight. I got a window seat and we got to see Santa Clause 2. Pretty silly movie, but it had a nice ending..

As the plane was landing, you could see "the Strip". The airport was right beside it.. I could see the big MGM Grand hotel, the big Pyramid thing. The city of Las Vegas was surprisingly larger than I expected. Going in I thought it would be the Strip, and then desert. But really there's actually a small little city here!

The first thing I saw when I came out of the plane was slot machines. Slot machines everywhere! People were actually using them! I couldn't imagine, how could you get off a plane and just start gambling right away. Or maybe when you're flying away you need that last *fix* before you leave. How silly is that..

It was big hugs all around when we met in the baggage claim area.

I dunno for me it was weird seeing the family again, and it was weird on the ride home, looking around and seeing the bright city lights. They had a lot of partial nudity on the billboards.. Las Vegas must be the most liberal city of the US. Also in the US, Mariah Carey, and Seinfeld. Too bad the shows are so darned expensive.

The weather is nice, it was around 10pm PST, and I had my head out the window as my dad was driving. Not for very long though, it's not *that* warm. Still, pretty nice..

When we got to the house, I realized what a big place it was. The house is a mansion.. I mean it is big. If any of you have been to my house in TO, it's nothing compared to this house. It could just be the architecture. It's much more "grandeur". It reminds me of Tim's house in Kanata, only bigger (but no basement, so all in all probably smaller).

My mom said that in Vegas if it rains for more than 10 minutes, there's a flood.. LOL

As I was saying, house is pretty massive. They have a giant screen tv, and all kinds of stuff. The place seems too big, like it needs more people. They should have at least 2-3 more people living here. Maybe me and my future wife.. hehehe. They built a bedroom for me, and the washroom has two sinks..

The water here is soft.. when you soap up, you can't rinse it all off.. it's so weird. My bro says they use half the amount of soap he used to use. It just doesn't wash off..

At night, it was super cold. They forgot to open up the heat vent in my room, and I was so cold. It was like camping, you know that feeling of coldness at around 4-5am? That's what it was like, all night long. In the morning I opened my door and went into the sitting room and slept there.. It was way warmer.

Today we're planning on going to the Strip at night. Actually I'm glad to get this outta the way. After all, it's Sin City. It's the last place I want to be. If it were my preference, I'd rather fly them all to TO and celebrate Christmas there. But this is how it's gonna be.. so I have to live with it.

December 19, 2003

Yahoo! Launch just played a song by Josh Groban -- very good voice.. If you look him up on, you can get a free download of his song "You Raise Me Up". It's quite good.. check out the lyrics:

When I am down and, oh my soul, so weary;
When troubles come and my heart burdened be;
Then, I am still and wait here in the silence,
Until you come and sit awhile with me.

You raise me up, so I can stand on mountains;
You raise me up, to walk on stormy seas;
I am strong, when I am on your shoulders;
You raise me up: To more than I can be.

You raise me up, so I can stand on mountains;
You raise me up, to walk on stormy seas;
I am strong, when I am on your shoulders;
You raise me up: To more than I can be.

There is no life - no life without its hunger;
Each restless heart beats so imperfectly;
But when you come and I am filled with wonder,
Sometimes, I think I glimpse eternity.

You raise me up, so I can stand on mountains;
You raise me up, to walk on stormy seas;
I am strong, when I am on your shoulders;
You raise me up: To more than I can be.

You raise me up, so I can stand on mountains;
You raise me up, to walk on stormy seas;
I am strong, when I am on your shoulders;
You raise me up: To more than I can be.
I went the Justis Kao concert yesterday. Justis definitely has a lot of talent, both in singing and piano. He's got a great voice and very creative talent on the ivories.. and he's very charismatic, not to mention a pretty good-looking guy. Hey, I'm not afraid to admit it! He and his team sang a lot of Christmas songs and stuff like that.

That style of music (RnB/Funk) isn't really my cup o tea, but it was still enjoyable nonetheless.

I ran into Can & Mylene there. I hadn't seen them since ages ago when I visited NTCBC. Our family left M3C shortly after Can resigned. It's interesting to run into people like that, who played a big part in a rather large transition of my family's church life. We reminisced for a bit and then realizing I had nothing else to say to them, I went back to my seat.

I'm getting to know 'Nita better and better as weeks go on. My first impressions of her are nothing like what I see now. She's so silly at times, and funny too. One impression that remains is that she is a very strong/mature Christian, and as I've been trying my hardest to surround myself with these types of people -- so this is a good thing. I think that God has really blessed me with the new relationships I've been making in the past year.

I feel the urgency to strive to surround myself as much as possible with disciplined, responsible, loving believers. This is just one of my goals that I wanted to shoot for, knowing my tendencies and the fact that my parents are far, far away. If there's one thing I lack, it's definitely the discipline factor.

Well, this is probably my last post in Toronto as I'll be leaving shortly after I get home from work tonight. My friend Keith will be taking me to the airport. I haven't figured out how I'll get back yet, but I'll worry about that later, I guess.

December 16, 2003

my stereo has this delay setting. i think it's specially there for jazz music, i don't know.. but anyway it makes norah jones sound really cool.. and all other jazz music in general.

without music my spirit grows stagnant. i deleted all of my mp3s the other night, deciding it was best to just delete them rather than "wait and see if i'll buy the cd eventually". so now, i've got nothing to listen to. i realize now how music affects my emotions so deeply.. music captures the very fiber of my being, my mood, my feelings.. it can grab control of me, takes over me. now that my collection is so tiny, my mood is very similar, in that i feel like i'm in a bit of rut, like i wanna do something but don't know what. restlessness.

on the subject of Urbana. i know i'm not too old to go. i also know that God hasn't called me to do missionary work at this stage of my life. things keep falling into place at work. if I was being called to do something else, God would've closed the doors on my current job.

Christmas. For some reason the last couple weeks when I was reflecting on the meaning of Christmas I kept thinking it was Easter. A couple nights ago after a reflection and prayer I found myself feeling a great amount of shame and guilt because my mind and wandered to the time Christ originally died for me. When I finished praying I was in tears, and then I shook it off realizing it wasn't even Easter time. Isn't that weird? Christmas time is a joyous occasion, and here I was thinking about the death rather than the birth. It must be the ADD...

December 15, 2003

re: baptism

I was just going to put this in the comments but it was getting too long.

The point I'm trying to make is that I believe it *is* black & white. In the Bible God commands us to be baptised as Christians. Just like we're commanded to love one another, worship Him, and spread His Word.

But I agree that one's own reason for getting baptised should be genuine and valued. When I got baptised, I did it because I felt it was the right thing to do. I knew that I believed and felt the next logical step was to get baptised. To me it is black & white, so as soon as my church felt I was old enough to get baptised, I did it. When my brother was contemplating his baptism, my parents urged him to do it. "Just do it. It doesn't matter whether or not you think you're ready." I was shocked by this response.

Although he and I are really close, we rarely discuss theology. I honestly didn't know if he had truly accepted Christ or if he was just going through the motions. I guess mom/dad know best.

December 14, 2003


Today I debuted in the t3c choir. People said we were good, although I swear some of the guys beside me were off, singing the wrong notes just like in practice. But there were so many of us, people probably couldn't tell. It was fun though, and the song was super easy. There were 6 baptismals (praise God almighty!). I know I've gone over this before about baptismals but I just thought of a really good analogy for baptisms and why people should get baptized. I believe strongly that once you have accepted Christ you should get baptized.

Think of a couple who moves in together but don't plan on getting married. There has to be some kind of conflict or problem that one or both of these two people have with eachother. It's like they're testing first to see if they can stand to be with one another. This to me is very similar to a Christian who doesn't get baptised. It's as if they accept Jesus, and but there's something wrong and they don't feel like they want to make the commitment. Maybe they're afraid, or waiting it out to just see whether this christianity thing "works out" for them. I dunno.


Right after church I headed home and then to the ACC with kenric. To make this story short, the Raptors played a very bad game, and the officiating was even worse. We lost the game, and our string of 'Raptors always win when we go to their games' was snapped. However, our string of 'Raptors always win when we get beer at halftime' is still intact. I didn't feel like drinking today, as it was an afternoon game, on a Sunday. Also our 'Raptors always win when we sit the Sprite Zone' record still lives..

I must sound the like a big geek. I'll stop now on sports.


Finally mr.loquacious returns with something for us to think about:

Why are sweet potato pie's called "sweet potato pies", and not "yam pies"? Aren't sweet potatos, the same thing as yams? And why is it that "sweet potato pie" sounds so much more delicious that "yam pies"? And get this, my brother (who likes sweets like me) likes potatoes, but not yams. Potatoes have no taste at all, and yams have the sweetie goodness (and softness when baked correctly). This boggles the mind! - U.S.: 'We got him' - Dec. 14, 2003 - U.S.: 'We got him' - Dec. 14, 2003


December 13, 2003

tired and full

last night i was up really late. after worship at church (whereupon i arrived late, by almost 30 mins) we went to congee wong's at first markham place. then afterwards i met up with some friends at the ten ren's downstairs. i made the mistake of picking green tea instead of black tea. (passionfruit green tea with lichee jelly) green tea is so bitter! i wondered to myself whether the girls working there would start to recognize me. i go there way too often..

i'm really tired right now. getting ready to sleep. and i'm full, for a change as well. in total this week i had 2.5 dinners. more like 2.1. yesterday at congee wong's i was planning to have some dinner, but they put an egg right in the middle of it, raw. luckily i was able to have one bowl of non-egg-ed congee, although it may have had a bit because i had minor pains afterwards and completely lost my appetite.

anyway back to the dinner tonight i had some leftovers from last night that the group was kind enugh to let me have, and dumplings. still, i've only eaten on average 1 meal per day all week long.. not good

i can see that i'm rambling now. hopefully no one read this one. haha.

December 11, 2003

Today at work, my boss expressed his disappointment that i was only able to get a 6 month extension from the City, and then he told me he pulling for trying to have me converted to a full-timer. Imagine me, a lifer with the City! Crazy!

When I see God's wonderous works in my life, it is simply amazing. I can't express in words how thankful I am for the way He's blessed me time and time again. A year ago when God gave me this job I told Him that I would whole heartedly commit myself to His will and follow His plan for me. Each time it was near the end of my contract, I never once worried that it might not be extended, or even if it wasn't going to be extended, I did not waver.

I think in my heart I've fully put my life into His hands and allowed Him to do His works to the point where I no longer feel like it's something I need to worry about anymore. My faith has grown and I know that He will open the doors that need to be opened, and close the doors that need to be closed. I think that this approach to life has brought me a lot of peace and joy.

People always ask me where I see myself in 3-5 years. I never really know what to tell them. Before, I had no answer because I just have no real sense of ambition. I've never set career goals like what kind of company I'd like to work at, what kind of hours I'll be working, how many letters come after my name, etc, etc.. All that stuff has never really mattered to me. But I think that at this point in my life it's not just a matter of not having vision or ambition, but more a matter of just not caring about stuff like that because I know in my heart that it's not important.

I know people will say that I can only think this way because I've been so blessed and if I were suffering like many of my friends are right now, I'd be saying different things. Maybe they're right, maybe if God takes everything away I'll be less faithful, more demanding and bitter. Maybe. Hopefully not.
i feel like i want to go see the movie again. it was that good. yesterday i tried to convince my friend it was an awful movie, just to see what happens to a person who goes in with low expectations. because i went with high expectations and was absolutely blown away. he didn't believe me though, and eventually i caved in anyway.

i'm really happy to have found K's blog. she's so wacKy. i remember i used to read her old page and it would cracK me up every time.

in 8 days i'll be going to Las Vegas to see my family again. i'm getting excited now. i can't wait to see my brother again, i miss him so much! i keep thinking he will be a different person now, all grown up like. i haven't seen him since July. It's been over 5 months, definitely the longest time we've ever been apart. i'm also excited to see my parents' new digs, it's supposed to be quite a house.. bigger than the one we have here. and i'll get to try driving stick on my dad's matrix -- that should also be fun. best of all, the average temperature there is 15 C during the day! whoop whoop whoop!

December 10, 2003


Last night I went to see The Last Samurai with nathan, drew, kenric and sam. My favorite type of movies are those that are of "epic" proportions.

The Last Samurai was such a movie.

The Last Samurai was easily the best movie I have seen since Gladiator. The story was amazing, heroic, riveting even. The geographical scenes were beautiful, the acting was solid, and I have to say that I was at the edge of my seat through the whole movie. The protagonist went through a life-changing experience.

To sum it up, the directors/actors of this movie (set in Japan) took the best out of movies like Braveheart, Gladiator and Dances with Wolves and created a masterpiece!

Go watch it!

December 09, 2003

contract extended!

Today I finally got news of my contract extension. For those of you who missed it, on November 26 2003, my contract with the City of Toronto concluded. However, my supervisor had already put in a request to have me extended another year, so HR granted me a 3 week temporary extension while we waited for the paperwork to be cleared. This 3 week period ended today.

Because of the City's hiring freeze the request took longer than expected, and there was worries that it might not work out because of budgeting and political reasons. But today I contacted HR and after a few hours of deliberation, they've officially extended me until the end of June 30, 2004.

Congratulations, eBrian!

During this time of contemplating my future I've thought a lot about why/why not, why would I be extended and why wouldn't I be. The bottom line is, whether or not I was or wasn't was part of God's will for me. His plan, for now, is for me to stay with the City.

God is good? All the time.
All the time? God is good.


i heard this song on the radio and then saw the video on muchmusic. it's called Stacey's Mom. the tune is really catchy, and the words are absolutely hilarious.. check it out if you get a chance. it's about some kid who has a crush on his classmate's mom!

i've decided that i want to organize some kind of weekly or bi-weekly downtown lunch, for people in all our small groups. i think it would be really great, to have such a gathering. in Ottawa my friends and I would meet every week on a friday and go out for lunch and just fellowship. until now i hadn't realized that quite a few of us work downtown.

why, just the other day i ran into Zee, and i know that anita and eric both work downtown. That's already 4 of us.

today i chatted briefly with my dad and grandmother on yahoo. the first thing she uttered to me was whether i had a girlfriend yet. boo. me not like that..

December 07, 2003


i believe i've finally lost my mind today. yesterday, i spotted a bill i need to pay that was due today, and i made a mental note to pay it today. after 2 hours of searching, i cannot find this bill. is it possible i'm mixing reality with my dreams?

December 06, 2003

although i did basically nothing today, i'm so exhausted. bruce says it's because i'm getting old.

this morning i woke up at 7:50am, then again at 9:30am. i played computer, as usual, then at around 11:30ish i got ready and went to pick up Bruce from his place. we had lunch together at Asian Legend restaurant. it was yum-yum :) on the drive back to my place, i had to turn right, and there were a lot of cars, and no one was letting me in, until finally someone let me through. it was Karen! i waved hello to her, and she waved back!

the rest of the day was spent playing all my gamecube games, some more diablo, and just chatting. Bruce has changed a lot and seems to have learned a lot from his experiences of being unemployed, in a manner of speaking. as a graduate of comp. eng, driving a school bus for a living must be such a humbling experience, yet he does it, and serves food on weekends. i felt very humbled, almost ashamed while we talked, since i was living in such luxury. he described his bedroom, it was like the size of my bathroom :(

i know that i shouldn't feel sorry for God's blessings, but sometimes i feel almost embarrassed when i invite people over because of what i have. a lot of time jokingly i complain about little petty things, maybe to get a laugh or just cuz i feel like it. i really take things for granted and only really notice them when people point out to me that i'm so "lucky".

my cousin (roastduck) gave me some advice today. he said that rather than trying to change/improve myself in order to impress another person, i should only be worried about changing myself in order to impress God.
i hate that i'm such a procrastinator. people ask me, how's work going? I tell them, same old. the fact of the matter is, i have a ton of stuff due next friday, and i'm only a 3rd of the way finished. it's this crazy, live by the moment or die trying attitude that i have when it comes to getting things done. as if to think i'm actually going turn in quality stuff at the last minute. I'm not even a good finisher, or let's just say i'm not the type who "steps up" under pressure.

so to tell people i'm not really busy at work isn't true, i'm not busy because i choose to be *EXTREMELY* busy next week. so for those i've told that work has been uneventful, i'm sorry but i lied through my teeth.

i met up with gladys for lunch, we ate in the food court. everyone pray that she does well on her exam, she's got an exam tomorrow (err.. today). i'm still pretty confused about the whole thing but it's like her first of a bunch of exams for her CA. i wish you the best gladys!

i've got this friend named "xing", but we call him Bruce because okay, let me start from the beginning. at Mac, in my first and second years I lived in Edwards Hall. Now Edwards Hall was the only all-guys dorm. but wait, there's more. this building was the oldest building on campus. apparently it came with a lot of tradition, and with it, a history of insane, brutal hazing, and a naming ceremony. anyway, when were there the hazing was gone but the naming was still there.

basically as frosh we lined up and one by one, blindfolded and brought into a room. when the blindfold was removed, i found myself sitting on a chair, surrounded by about 12 huge guys, all formed or current Edwards "elders". they gave me a book to sign, which is on display at parliament (or so they said). they looked at me, then they huddled up, and then one guy (who's name was "Stick"), turned to me and said: From now on, you will be known as Long Duck. (the whole time I kept thinking they were going to gang up and beat the crap outta me, so i just said "ok")

anyway, back to the story, my friend Xing was named "They Call Me Bruce", or TCMB for short. Thus his name became Bruce. The funny thing is, his name isn't Bruce, but to this day everyone calls him that, even non-Edwards people.

right so tomorrow (today) i'm gonna be hanging out with him. without Bruce, i might still be in first year engineering.. he really helped me out a lot that year.

my back pains are still there. before i got them just when sitting in front of a computer, but now i get them non-stop, lying down, standing, walking. and they're not only backpains now but also pulsating sudden sheer flashes of pain up the front of my chest as well. i'm not sure what it is exactly, but goodness gracious does it ever hurt!

December 05, 2003


at 10pm, i felt really tired and went back to my computer to check email. at 11:30pm, I finally went to bed. Yet, it's 1:06am and I'm wide awake. I was lying in bed, tossing and turning, unable to figure out why i couldn't sleep, so went back and turned my computer back on and here i am blogging again. tick tock..


my back hurts. i think it's from the way i sit/sleep on the subway. i finally found a way that i can sleep without working that my body will fall over the person beside me. (i can't think of anything more humiliating and embarrassing, on a subway, than falling over someone while sleeping). i've had people push me back, or even wake me and tell me to stop. that's worst.. anyway, now i just bend forward and my head droops down to my knees. but because of the way my back arches, well i guess i'm straining it. anyway, my back hurts now.


i'm gonna try sleeping again. good nite all.

December 04, 2003

today's PDL entry was textbook, trusting in God even during the tough times, and praising Him always, even when you are down. although it sounds hard to praise God when you feel like He's turned against you, to me it isn't hard at all. maybe the worst i've been in to end up praying pleading/questioning why it was happening to me, but i don't think i've been to point where i would stop giving Him praise!

after work today at 4pm, we had our Christmas party. it was good fun! I had a beer and some pretty good wings, enough for dinner which is what I was aiming for. I played a few games of pool, foosball, and hockey (no, not real hockey -- bubble hockey). my old boss who had left in September to get his MPA came back to visit us. it was great seeing him!

my current supervisor begged me to stay, because it was only 7:30 when i left. he told me that all the single ladies come out on thursdays, and i, a single guy, should capitalize on this. he pointed out it's not like my dad is at home waiting for me.

i don't know what's more pathetic, the fact that i was rushing home to watch Friends and Survivor, or that i actually considered his offer... LOL
i'm feeling much better today. healthwise i believe i'm back to my regular tip-top shape.

my grandfather doesn't remember anything from the last 2 weeks. remember, he had the stroke a week ago. so basically all the memory from the time he flew to Nevada is gone. when my mom told him he had a stroke, he was like: "WHAT?!"! Apparently he dreamed that he had been kidnapped, and was all tied up next to a tombstone or something.. pretty weird..

i've been thinking a lot about christian music (and all other music), on how it affects me on both a spiritual and emotional level. many times even just the music and not the words move me, which i guess is wrong, because only the Spirit should be moving me in those ways, and for that to happen, i should be focusing on the lyrics more than the tune itself. it's almost as if i should try to stray away from good sounding music, and just stick with hymns instead. to quote PDL:

"Real worship happens when your spirit responds to God, not to some musical tone. In fact, some sentimental, introspective songs hinder worship because they take the spotlight off God and focus on your feelings."

It goes on to describe 9 different ways that people draw near to God, taken from a book called Sacred Pathways (darn, i can't remember the html for lists):

(1) Naturalists, who are most inspired to love God out doors
(2) Sensates, who love God with their senses, and appreciate beautiful worship services that involve all 5 sense
(3) Traditionalists, draw closer to God through liturgies, rituals
(4) Ascetics, prefer to love God in solitude, simplicity
(5) Activists, who love God through confronting evil, battling injustice
(6) Caregivers, who love God by loving others and meeting their needs
(7) Enthusiasts, love God through celebration
(8) Contemplatives, love God through adoration
(9) Intellectuals, love God by studying with their minds

I think I'm I bit of all of them, definitely not 3 or 5 though.


tonight Kenric's mom went out somewhere so he was home alone. i invited him over so we could watch the game together. he brought his own food.. i don't think i'm good enough to start cooking for others yet. i think my cooking is strictly in the "experimental" stages (although i must confess last batch was DAMN good). Anyway, Raptors won, 105-95.

i was really hoping that once my grandparents moved down to the States with the rest of my family that I'd be able to have more get-togethers at my place, what with all the space. hopefully i'll get a chance to do this, maybe next year since everyone is so busy around this time of year. i am leaving, on the 19th to visit my family. i'll be back on 1st of January.

my only regret of my trip is that small group kinda just started and I'll miss a few meetings. i think the beginnings are so important in terms of the friendship and bonding, and i'll miss out on that. :( also i believe x-gen is having a Christmas dinner, which I'll miss as well. on the bright side, i'll have home cooking for a full two weeks.

December 02, 2003

i ate absolutely nothing today. not a bite. i'm starving and yet, i think it's for the best after last nights washroom escapades. i think i've said enough!

in my small group we are focusing on worship. not just your average sunday worship but everyday worship. it's perfect right now because PDL is covering exactly that, worshipping God. In fact, the first purpose they outline of our lives is to worship God. God put us here, so that we could worship Him.

i've been reading PDL every morning on the subway, and as a result I no longer read the "Metro", the free paper the Toronto Star puts out for ttc riders. because of this, and the fact that i've back on the Diablo 2 bandwagon, I have no idea what's happening in the world outside. The other day, at the Anita/Carrie dinner, they brought up the story of two teens who beat up and killed a younger boy, and apparently one of the older kids was related to the younger kid. I didn't even know what they were talking about!

Is it important as Christians to know what's going on around us? News like this is so depressing.. I'd much prefer to turn a blind eye at all the craziness and just bury my head in Big Guy's book. Is this right?

I saw Master and Commander today. I was expecting too much of this movie because I like Russell Crowe. It was a good movie, but not quite the "epic adventure" i was hoping for, a la Gladiator/Braveheart type of thing. Hopefully Last Samurai will be better. I miss big movies like that..

all my paragraphs have started with "i". but not anymore!

December 01, 2003


some quick update tidbits for the weekend:

Friday night

i went to Hosanna Free Evangelical church to visit my friend Alfred, who had been to Kazakhstan on a missions trip for the last year. It was very uplifting and seeing the ways in which he has changed from his mission, and the way God has moved him and all that, was great! Alf got choked up (i've never seen this before, or thought that it was even possible) at one point when he talked about how a girl broke down at an evangelical meeting and accepted Christ.

matt mark was there as well, and i met lydia for the first time. they came really late, like near the end of the alf's sharing!! afterwards we went out to various fast foods places. we were shut down a couple times before we found a burger king. i think i got sick from doing this. it was cold and raining.


I learned that my grandfather had fully recovered. Isn't this interesting: people say that when you're in turmoil you pray to God, while when you're happy, you forget all about Him. I didn't even blog it when I found out grampa was okay.

i slept for most of the day, felt a bit sick from the night before.

went to Jack Astor's to celebrate Carrie's belated birthday, as well as Anita finding a new job. the food there was really good -- i hadn't eaten all day, so i had a huge rib dinner. after dinner was glow-in-the-dark putting, but i went home because i wasn't feeling so good.

when i got home, i got sick real bad. seems my stomach wasn't as happy about the food as i thought..


i woke up at 8:30am, but felt horrible, so i went back to sleep. i knew i had to get to church because i had to pick up notes from Gladys for the small group I missed (by going to Alf's sharing). also i had to pick up Raptor tickets from Kenric, to sell to my co-worker because he doesn't want them.

got up again at 10:30am, went to church, picked up the tickets, but Gladys was gone already. went back home. i feel bad because i signed up for choir at t3c, but i've only been to 1 practice in the last 3 weeks now.

i was planning to make congee, but i never got around to doing it. had regular dinner instead, stomach hurt all night though.


Officially, I'm sick. I'm at work, typing out this blog which I know is really bad, but pooh. My cold is at that point where it will either get better or get TONS worse. I just need to take care of myself tonight..