Sunday, January 23, 2011

American Idols and Saturday Sightseeing

Today's sermon at Hosanna was about idols in our lives and what sort of things are competing for our attention. It came at a good time for me.

I never thought it would happen but I'm becoming bored with the internet. In the last few weeks I've cut my online time down considerably and I'm seriously liking this trend. Something I wouldn't expect to happen to me in the dead of a Minnesota winter. I still check my email daily in addition to Facebook and a couple forums I participate in but aside from those interests and my weekly blog updates, I don't have a whole lot drawing me back. If this trend continues (and I want it to) I'll also be pulling back from the forums which will leave me with just Facebook and my blog as regular stops. My blog will no doubt be the last man standing as I'm growing weary with Facebook as well.

As Tammy and I were walking to our truck at the far end of the parking lot after church we were exchanging thoughts about idols in our lives. I told her of my lack of interest in being online (certainly an idol of mine) and wondered if that was something God had been putting on my heart? She confided in me her main idol but then turned the focus back to me with encouragement for me to keep writing in my blog if nothing else. I'm glad for her support in that pastime of mine because I think 20 years from now I'd regret having given up on this. It's quite possible though that I'll be placing less emphasis on it.

I've been spending some of my extra time in our workout room and am really enjoying the diversion that it provides. I want to get out and ride but the weather and roads haven't been cooperating at all. It's been bitterly cold so much so that the sun is having very little effect on the thin layer of snow along the shoulders. Usually we can get a foot of snow and the shoulders will be fine for riding within a day or two but not this year. Speaking of cold; I left work after the all-night shift a couple mornings ago and walked to my car in -27f air. That's seriously cold. Fortunately, there was little wind.

I got up early Saturday morning intent on putting in a long effort on my rollers; 50 miles for sure and possibly something much more depending on how I felt. I even had everything set up the night before so I could get the most from my morning. I was on them by 6:02 with 5 water bottles at the ready in case I went real long. And I did. I climbed off after 100 miles and 4 hours and 37 minutes later. I was spent but glad to have finally put some serious extended time on them. Rather than watching Tour de France videos I spent my time watching episodes of Build it Bigger on Science Channel. Fascinating stuff, especially the episode about the Melbourne Rectangular Stadium.

Tammy was meeting a friend at the Capitol in St Paul for the annual March for Life rally which commemorates the 1973 US Supreme Court decision legalizing abortion. I met up with her later with some friends from our small-group at church. We were touring the James J. Hill House together on Summit Avenue. The sun was getting low in the afternoon sky by the time our tour began and the house was only lit with period lighting minus the gas lamps used back in the day to supplement the undependable supply of electricity making it quite dark for photos. Still, I managed a couple.

It was an interesting tour and one I'd recommend but probably better seen in the summer with better daylight and when you can tour the grounds. From there we went across the street to the St Paul Cathedral to tour it. Tammy was there earlier in the day for a prayer service with 3000 other people. She was telling me how spectacular the stained glass was but by the time we got there the sun had just set leaving little backlighting for photos but still doable.

We finished out the night with dinner at the world famous (isn't it?) Mickey's Diner. I'd been there once before but it'd been 20 years or more. Not a place to go if you're on any sort of weight loss program.  The malts and burgers were just as they should be...tasty and filling.

Mickey's only seats 40 but we were all fortunate to find places to sit within minutes of getting in the door and out of the below zero weather. We sat in front of the grill and I never noticed the cook pause for even a few seconds as he kept the orders moving. I've always thought that short-order cooks have all the makings of what's needed to be an air traffic controller but why it is that I can't cook I have no idea.


Jeannette said...

I hear your concern about idols... it's good to be clear about one's purpose in all we do. There are flashes of light in your post...shine on.

Kevin said...

Thanks for the kind words, Jeannette.