September 30, 2005


I discovered a new food today, called "Mousaka". I got it at Mr. Souvlaki next to Modern Wok down in the PATH area, downtown TO.

I went with a friend after we went to MEC to buy some stuff. Strange, whenever I go there it's just like Mitchell's -- I end up buying way more than I intended to. I went in to get a pair of winter gloves, and came out with a vest and the gloves, and glove lining. So my intention to spend $30 turn into $100.

Back to the food thing -- I don't like Greek food. I'm not a big fan because of the smokey taste of meat, the crappy MinuteRice, salad etc. But Mousaka is really good. And the meal itself was huge -- massive portion that I could barely finish all for $6.

Towards the end of the meal, I felt relief that I wasn't able to finish the mousaka. Because mousaka, as it turns out, contains eggs. The entire upper shell is made from egg, among other things.

And as most of you know, I'm allergic to eggs.

So there I was sitting at my desk, feeling this great sensation in my throat as if someone had walked over and kicked me in the neck. Or that feeling when you accidentally swallow a large piece of meat, and it's lodged in your throat and you can get it to go down but it won't come up either -- it's not like you can't breathe but certainly doesn't feel all too pleasant.

Yea so that's how I'm feeling this very second as I type this.

And then the chest pains will come, I felt a bit just now but it'll come on strong soon.


September 29, 2005

Lives another day

I was informed today that my contract was extended to December 31, 2005. Interviews for my position will begin sometime in mid-October though, so I could either be full time by the end of October, or surely I'll be unemployed.

I'm indifferent about the whole thing.

September 27, 2005

Casting Crowns: Casting Crowns

The great thing about Casting Crowns, besides sounding great, is that each song has a purpose. Each song has scripture, that either inspired the song or go well with the song. Casting Crowns is made up of 7 people -- 5 guys and 2 girls. The lead singer Mark Hall is a youth pastor and it shows.

The first thing I noticed (again, besides the great sound) is that the lyrics either challenge you or is a declaration of the Almighty. It's as if they're trying to teach us something.

If We Are The Body - Track 2

It's crowded in worship today
As she slips in trying to fade into the faces
The girls teasing laughter is carrying farther than they know
Farther than they know

But if we are the body
Why aren't His arms reaching?
Why aren't His hands healing?
Why aren't His words teaching?
And if we are the body
Why aren't His feet going?
Why is His love not showing them there is a way?
There is a way

A traveler is far away from home
He sheds his coat and quietly sinks into the back row
The weight of their judgmental glances
Tells him that his chances are better out on the road

Jesus paid much too high a price
For us to pick and choose who should come
And we are the body of Christ

Jesus is the way

September 26, 2005

It's just a show

During our camping trip in Wyoming, my dad asked Pastor Brett about what he thought about television shows like Seinfeld or Sex In The City. I knew this question was coming up because my dad hates those two shows. Moreover, the remaining 3 of us love to watch re-runs Seinfeld.

Pastor Brett pondered it for a moment but then got side-tracked onto something else. The following morning he as he walked past our tent-cabin, he came by and gave my dad a definitive answer. He said:

"Sam, sorry about last night. I struggled with your question all night long. I think the best answer I could give you is that I would only watch something that I think Jesus would watch with me. So imagine if Jesus was right here, would you watch Seinfeld or Sex In The City with Him? The truth is I don't watch a whole lot of TV, mostly just baseball. And I don't watch any "R" rated movies."

This is something that has really stuck with me. We joked about it a lot during the remainder of our trip -- like how could Pastor Brett subject Jesus to a game of baseball -- it's gotta be the most boring thing in the world! And whether, while watching Seinfeld, Christ would sit down and say "Boy, that Kramer.. what a funny dude!" or is it more likely He'd look at us and think "I suffered on a cross for THIS???"

WWJD has become much more of a catch-phrase and lost its true meaning. What *would* Jesus do? If Jesus had nothing to do, would He flip on the TV and watch? The Simpsons, or Family Guy - quite possibly the most offensive show on television? After all, it's just a show right? It's just entertainment, right?

Can you imagine Christ laying back on a couch watching Texas Hold'Em? Desperate Housewives? Hockey? Probably not. What about the news? I suppose He doesn't need to watch the news since He already knows what's happening in the world.

Would Jesus entertain Himself by lowering His values and ignoring His principles?

Should we?


I "earned" a raise at work last week. I put that in quotations because I didn't earn it at all -- it was part of the Local 79 Harmonization of pay scales. It's retrospective to Jan 2005. It's a silly little raise, earning me a grand total of 1 extra dollar per day, so approx. $100 for me extra in my last pay cheque.

With that money, I went nuts at Mitchells and bought 5 CDs.

Switchfoot - "Nothing Is Sound"
Building 429 - "Space Between Us"
Jadon Lavik - "Moving On Faith"
Casting Crowns - "Casting Crowns"
Casting Crowns - "Lifesong"

More on the CDs later, when I get a chance to listen to them all.

On Saturday night, I also got a chance to go see a movie called "Roll Bounce". This is a movie starring rapper Bow Wow, formerly known as Lil Bow Wow. I saw a commercial for this movie last winter while watching various Oscar nominated films with Kenric. I tucked that one away in my memory and finally had a chance to see it.

I took my brother to watch, in more celebration of my new found wealth of $1 extra per day.

So anyway, the movie was really good. The dancing was off the hook! I really enjoyed the light humor and the dancing on rollerskates. I also enjoyed the funky beats and may consider purchasing the soundtrack for the movie. It's hard to believe the kinds of moves these kids can do on rollerskates. And it looks like a lot of fun. I dreamed about rollerskating last night!

Plot-wise, it had a lot to be desired. Having seen movies like Bring It On, and other of these family-oriented shows involving competition, Roll Bounce didn't have a whole lot to offer.

The acting was good. Most of the characters were kids.

I'd give it an 8/10.

September 23, 2005

Steps to making my voice sound good

STEP 1: Drink a bottle of stale water right before bed.
STEP 2: Sleep very late.
STEP 3: Leave the A/C on even though it's already cold.
STEP 4: Wake up at 6:30am

Woke up this morning with a scruffy voice, not sure if I have a cold or if it's just temporary. Switched on my computer, checked and responded to emails. Then I went to check worshiptogether. They'd posted a new song on New Song Cafe so I watched it. Anyway, to my surprise when I sang aloud, I had this cool scratchy sound to my voice, it was really really cool -- like a rock star!

Unfortunately I think it *IS* a cold. I feel weak today, and I've been coughing.

It's about time that did a New Song Cafe with Jadon Lavik. The first time I heard of Jadon was when I heard his song "What If" on K-LOVE radio. I was mainly drawn to the guitar playing in the song and the fun beat/tune it had.

If there's one thing that frustrates me though, is when NSC puts on some guy who is really good at guitar. It's like the last time when they Steven Curtis Chapman. Beginners like myself have absolutely no chance in trying to play songs like this. I'd be lucky to get the chords right, that's about it. I can't strum like that..


I've been thinking about what I can do if I am unemployed in two weeks. I think to pass the time (and prevent me from playing games all day) I need to enroll myself into some classes, someplace, somewhere. I'd like to take music, maybe some voice lessons and guitar courses. RCM offers some guitar lessons that I could enroll into, although they started last week :(

September 22, 2005


Yesterday after work, my co-worker Kenneth and I were walking to St. Andrew station to go home. We had a pretty funny conversation about backpacks and how funny it looks when people wear them in the front. We always have the funniest little conversations. Anyway, when we got to the station and were going down the escalator, he turns to me with a serious look

K: "Hey Brian. Lemme ask you something -- what's a hollaback girl?"
B: "Haha.. I have no idea."
K: "It's a good song."
B: "I think it's a bad thing, cuz I think in the song she says she isn't one."
K: "Maybe."
K: "Well, I know she likes bananas."


Last night, after maybe 25 tries over the past month, Brethren defeated Vaelastrasz the Corrupt. We were all gimped from wearing our maximum fire resistance gear, but Smee fought valiantly alongside his brethren and we demolished Vael. First Alliance guild to pull it off on Azgalor. Can Brethren not ROCK?


It was probably one of the single most exciting nights of WoW that I've experienced in a long, long time.


Lost was really cool. I'm starting to get more and more the feeling that my original guess about the truth behind the island was correct. My guess has always been that the island is a bunch of people who are in purgatory -- that this is where people go. Maybe there are several islands similar to this one. Or perhaps it's a place people go before they go for purgatory, like a pre-judgement area. This would explain a lot of things, for instance half the plane's victims were never found -- perhaps those people passed beyond this state and are in purgatory, or possibly in heaven or hell.

Anyway, this explains more -- each person has their story, and we get flashbacks of the things they did. I've always imagined that when God judges us, He'd review our life, going over every detail similar to the flashbacks.

The boy -- they took the boy from the raft -- maybe they decided he was ready to leave, or possibly that it was a mistake for him to be there. Maybe judgement is a bit more complicated for children because of their innocence.

As for the hatch -- I'm not sure. I think the australian guy might be an angel. He produced the miraculous healing of the woman in the flashbacks of this episode. She was paralyzed and Jack couldn't save her, and yet she was healed. Perhaps he's not an angel but something close to one, like a guardian of some sort. Maybe he's the guardian of that particular "pre-purgatory island". Or perhaps the state of per-purgatory is different for different people, depending on how or where they died.

How else can you explain how Desmond is living -- the computers, the shelter, electricity that he has in there.

Anyway, that's my guess on the whole thing.

September 16, 2005


I think I just the greatest CSI episode ever. The season premiere was just totally unbelievable. It had me scared, anxious, sad. It was an emotional rollercoaster, starting out as an innocent case that led me on a crazy kidnapping of one of the CSI guys (Nick Stokes), which led to him being stuck in a plexiglass coffin, buried underground.

What a great episode.. OH MY GOODNESS.

September 15, 2005

Get in, get out

Whenever I walk into Mitchell's (Family Bookstore), my goal is make a beeline straight towards what I came to buy, then go to the cashier, pay, and then get out. This is my goal.

Prior to going I like to pray for my trip, and go through over and over my plan, where to go, where to get it, and then get the heck out. If you've been to Mitchell's you know why. It's because if you don't, then you end up browsing, which leads to sampling some cd's, reading some books, planning your Christmas presents, birthdays, etc. The next thing you know, 2 hours have passed and you're walking back to your car carry 2 bags full of goodies.

So anyway, I was checking out which CDs I might buy next week when I take my brother to get Switchfoot. Casting Crown's "Lifesong" is looking pretty good, and also Bethany Dillon's "Imagination". I was also thinking about getting MercyMe's Christmas album, since I have all their other CDs. By the way, if you haven't already picked up "Arriving" by Chris Tomlin, it's on sale for just $7.99 this week.

So those were the CDs I wanted to check out. Also Matthew West, Lincoln Brewster, Nichole Nordeman... AHHH I need help!!

September 13, 2005

Our time

I like my quiet time.

Maybe it's because I've enjoyed living alone for some time now, or maybe it's my personality that I enjoy solitude. Whatever the reason, I was just really looking forward to yesterday evening after work, just a quiet time to sit back and enjoy dinner, TV and just some quiet time for myself.

It's been a helluva ride the past few months, whether it be Longlac, Las Vegas, Wyoming, or sharing the condo with my brother. Don't get me wrong, I really cherished those times spent with friends, relatives and my closest friend. The adventures we shared were amazing.. the experiences, memorable.

At the same time though there were times I felt overwhelmed by it all. Being so used to doing things myself, spending time (with myself), eating alone. For me I need that time alone, to think through things more clearly. I guess you can call it a moments of clarity, where I can just sit there, reflect, and commune with God.

This morning I did just that. Originally I had intended to wake up early to get to work at 7:30am. But instead what happened was I woke up at 6:30am, grabbed my guitar and just sang praises to God until 7. Then I had breakfast and winded up getting to work at 8. I think it was well worth it, even if it means I have to leave work half an hour later tonight.

My love for You
My heart for You
My life for You
All I am for You

Blood through my veins for You
I give my world to You
All I am and all I have
I lay it down for You
Dancing 'round with You
Spinning 'round with You
Laughing loud with You
My love

[God of Wrath by dc*b]

September 08, 2005


I woke up this morning at 4:00am. Yes, 4 AM. I couldn't sleep because of this excruciating pain I was experiencing in my upper left jaw. It was like I had bit down on a lead pipe, it was aching badly. Actually it hurt so bad that at first I thought it was the bottom jaw, the pain was so bad I couldn't pinpoint its source.

So anyway, I went to the bathroom and got some cold water to drink.

BIG MISTAKE.. that made it hurt soooo much more. It hurt some fierce! Like 10 times worse. Although on the flip side after that pain wore off, the original pain was less noticeable.

So then I tried to go back to sleep, but that wasn't happening it was too painful. So I did what any one would do, I turned on my computer and played World of Warcraft. I played until around 8am, still in pain, then called in sick. I waited until 9am, opened up my Pocket PC to get my dentists phone number.


I'd forgotten to charge the thing.. turns out the backup battery died too so EVERYTHING was wiped out. This is truly devastating.. I had the past 3 years of sermon notes on that thing. I had phone numbers and addresses from old friends, emergency numbers, license numbers, passwords.. you name it, it was on there. All gone.

Still, as painful as that sounds, it was more bearable than the pain in my tooth. So then I waited for my mom to come online (remember the 3 hour time difference). In retrospect, now that I've had a chance to reflect on the data I've lost, that loss is far more painful than my tooth. *sigh*

Anyway, I finally called the dentist and the reception tells me the next opening is in late October. *cripes* But then I explained my situation and she fit me in for Monday morning. So that leaves me the next 3-4 days in pain. I bought some Motrin.

Yup, that's Motrin pain.

September 07, 2005

Matthew West

I first heard about Matthew West while we were driving to Wyoming (btw, someone please remind me to post pictures of my trip!). We heard his song "Next Thing You Know" on the radio. This is just a super fun song. I've been really tempted to buy the CD after hearing the song over and over on the radio. The thing is when were at the Family Bookstore (christian bookstore in Vegas) I sampled the entire CD and passed on purchasing it. If I buy it at Mitchell's it'll probably cost twice as much :(

Speaking of Mitchell's, just another week before we head over there so he can pick up the latest Switchfoot CD that comes out on the 13th.

In other news, I think either my amp or my electric guitar is broke. I can't get any sound to come out of the amp anymore. :(

I still haven't reapplied for my job. Instead I've been trying to make the most out of these last few days before the inevitable interview and all that other crap. I've been attempting to expand myself at this position, trying different things.. seeing what I can and can't do. 8 days til the deadline..

September 06, 2005

It's your fault!

I'm going to take a different perspective on this hurricane Katrina disaster stuff.

"Hey look! It's Mike Myers!"

That's what I said when me and my brother were flipping through the stations on Friday night. We both thought it was pretty cool that NBC had selected a Canadian to say a few words about the New Orleans relief stuff.

Actually I found it weird for Myers to be doing it because he's such a goofy guy and you sit there waiting for him to crack a joke but it never comes. Instead, Kanye West was the one giving the punch line.

"...and they've given them permission to go down and shoot us!"

Unless West considers himself an armed & dangerous gang looter, he might be mistaken with this statement. I know that at times emotions run high and you say things you don't mean, but it sounds to me like West either considers himself a thug, or he's misunderstood and thinks police have been given authorization to shoot all black people.

"George Bush doesn't care about black people..."

This was one of the funniest moments I've seen on television, the second Kanye said those words they shifted over to Chris Tucker who didn't even know he was live. He kinda just stood there for a bit before realizing what was happening. Wouldn't it have been funny if he was picking his nose? *LOL*

I'm not arguing about the merits of Kanye (and many, many North Americans) opinion. As many of you surely are aware, there has been a lot of finger pointing going on through this terrible tragedy. Why did it take so long to respond? Why was this city built the way it was? Why did the media portray black people as looters and white people as survivors? Why ask why?

What purpose does blaming another person for your suffering do? If a child falls from his bike and lies on the ground bleeding, should onlookers stare at the boy and say "he shouldn't have been going so fast", or should they rush over and help?

I don't understand why this is the first thing that pops into a person's mind when they see the disaster and the suffering. The first thing I think about when I see these people suffering is about what I can do to help.

September 05, 2005

End of an era

Today marks the end of an era, the end of the most prolific wide receiver career in the history of the National Football League. I'd argue that he was the greatest football player ever (and probably none will ever match him). #80 holds the NFL records for just about every receiving statistic that exists. In fact according to ESPN he holds 58 different NFL Records. He had 1549 career receptions, 22895 yards receiving, 197 touchdowns. A two-time MVP, Rice won 3 Super Bowl titles and was the MVP of Super Bowl XXIII. He was a 13-time Pro Bowler and once played 274 consecutive games.

The thing I respected most about Jerry Rice was that he just went about his business. No controversy or need for extra attention like some of the bigger names nowadays (Randy Moss, Terrell Owens). He just went out and did his job, he let his performance do all the talking. He didn't have blazing speed but he had great hands and ran perfect routes. He was the best there is and most likely the best there ever will be. In today's game with larger, more physical players, not many players will last 21 seasons like Rice did.

Anyway, I'd tip my hat to a professional like that.

September 04, 2005


So my job was finally posted, a permanent position. Application due date is September 15.