Location: Columbus, Ohio, United States

Saturday, March 25, 2006

My Wife's Play

My wife is having her run of "The Secret Garden" this weekend.
It's absolutely unbelievable.
I'm not kidding. Most High School theatre sucks bad enough to reflect poorly on High School and Theatre, but this show rocks.
I'm never "just saying that."
It's awesome.
It's unbelievably beautiful. It makes me feel more human. I'm so proud of her kids and of her.
If you're in Columbus tomorrow go.
If you're in Ohio at all (i.e. Cincinnati...go).

That's all I've got


Monday, March 20, 2006

My Environmental Id

My superego has been working on a paper for the past week.
Tomorrow I fly down to testify at a public hearing. I go to a meeting, talk about some technologies, and how by using this stuff we'll be using the best technology available to minimize adverse environmental impact (not kill stuff).
And I'm right.
This is the best way to go. We need to build this port. If we don't it will create a big problem for electric utilities, and the military, and poor people, and me.

But it's a bit complicated.
The port lets us get more fossil fuel into the US (in this case Natural Gas).

And here's the thing. Our lifestyle is unsustainable. I like it. I like my house. I don't like my car that much, but I like being able to buy whichever one I darn well please. I like it.
But it can't last.
The suburbs are the greatest misallocation of resources in human history and lots of why we have them has to do with "black men are scary."
SUV-s are silly unless you're a militia hobbyist (or live in Detroit...my sister gets a pass because Detroit roads suck).
We use too much stuff.
And that's the thing. The only way to satisfy our need is fossil fuel. Right now that's true. Somewhere in the history of everything that works there's a time when it didn't, so I'm sure if we throw some serious money at the problem we'll eventually get better energy sources, but right now the problem is on the demand side.
If my buddy is a sex addict it doesn't matter if the only viable source for his demand for head is a hooker. The demand needs to get fixed...
Thus says my id.

But we need the natural gas. We really do. It will give jobs in places where we need them, like the southern state construction and chemical industry and provide cleaner alternatives for power than coal.

So I go to this meeting.

Monday, March 13, 2006

The Heart

This week I've:
1. Seen the musical wicked.
2. Lost and recovered a $500K piece of equipment below a national monument.
3. Made airplane friends with a West Point Cadet, an art student who is over the moon about Brazilian art, and the dad of one of my favorite fooball players.
4. Been to the coolest hotel I've ever been in (The W in Midtown) and instead of chilling in the hip nightlife I ate an overpriced cheese sandwich in bed as I fell asleep to the Colbert Report (Was tired...see item 2).
5. Led music for an Alpha retreat.
6. Played foosball with my wife, who is bizarrely good at it.
7. Debated the origin and application of the "loofah" those soapy foamy things that Girls and I use.
8. Offended one of my best friends in the world in real life, and probably lots of other people in pretend internet blog comment world.
9. Seen my quasi little sister flag twirl at the Student Staff basketball game at Sycamore High School.
10. Picked out perfume for my wife's little sister's best friend.
11. Been bizarelly good at answering the girl questions in "Battle of the Sexes" I don't understand it...I have no idea where I learned that YTL was Yves St Lauren or that mules were open backed high heel shoes. I imagine one of my wife's chick books (see "Confession").
It's been a full week.
With all this in mind I've been tracking an interesting debate in a couple different places. The question is this:
Man's heart--Good or bad.
Here's what I gather from the Bible:
1. In the view of scripture, the heart is the source of man's will, emotions, and decisive intellect. To love X with your whole heart is simply to be "sold out." It is not necessarily good or bad.
2. The heart is not universally defined as good or evil, it is more defined as universally significant. There are places where the heart is called wicked and other places where it's called holy. To the extent that the heart is the source of our decisive will, the heart is caught up in the same struggle as man--will we pridefully pursue the broken desires of our sinful nature or do we instead set apart our heart as holy.
So this begs the question, should we "follow our heart?" I think this boils down to St. Augustine's line--"Love and do what you will." Another way to think of this is in Psalm 37:4 and Romans 12:2. Delight yourself in the Lord and he'll give you the desires of your heart, be transformed so that you can test and approve God's good, pleasing, and perfect will. In other words chase after God and he will transform the stuff that you want so that you love the stuff he loves.
OK--so right now do we follow our heart? At what point does the transition from Ryan desires to God desires take root to the point where we can just "follow our heart." This I don't know, but it seems to me that it's always wise to use our heart as one strong input amidst others like scripture, counsel, solitary prayer, the example of others, and common sense.
Just my thoughts.

Saturday, March 04, 2006

Sliding from the Crease

My lacrosse team has a new slide system this year in which we essentially drive a man to a spot and then double the guy or bring help if we're beat.
The concept is real simple--if we're going to get beat, lose to a place where we maintain numerical advantage.
In other words, lose to where we can win.
There's something to that in other arenas as well.
In finance modern portfolio theory essentially focuses on fairly allocating statistical risk across one's financial portfolio so that the risk-reward trade off meshes with the financial needs of the person or firm.
This crosse over from the world of investments into the world of corporate finance and influences how business people make decisions.
This is a much better and more rigorous approach than "Hey what the hell" but it misses something big.
Failure is not binary. It's not a simple W or L.
The question isn't just "did you blow it" but "which way did you fall after you did."
Don't get me wrong--there are no moral victories. You win or you lose and that's how we roll, but there are probably times when the right mistake is better than the wrong win.
I'll flesh this out a bit more after I give it some thought.

Wednesday, March 01, 2006


I have a problem.
This weighs heavily on my mind. I fear that people will find out about it and shriek.
And now I'm broadcasting it to relieve the weight on my shoulders.
I love Chick books.
Books by Meg Cabot. Books that the Times call's "Chick Lit" about sexually empowered women in their 20-s making their way through New York's post modern jungle. Books written in the form of interoffice memos that are about relationships within said office.
Books about girl detectives who think they're fat.
I love them.
My wife reads them. She falls asleep. I read them. Lots of them. Pages and pages of emotional instability, and trite storylines, and witty but somewhat superficial banter.
I take them from her bedside. I read them. I return them to her bedside neatly and memorize the page number to avoid having to out myself with a bookmark.
She's on to me.
Recently I've been getting sloppy, like an alcoholic leaving the drawer to his hidden bottle set open. Subconsciously trying to get caught.

I feel better now.