Saturday, February 22, 2014

Stories from the Mission... bit 54

  I had a cool idea for laptops today as I was running in and out of the Starbucks. Right now, as people sit and do stuff on their computers, it's a very personal, kind of isolating experience for a person is so public a place as a coffee shop. The idea is to add a second screen on the back of the screen you look at that would face the rest of the room. You could show off artwork, photos or anything you want to the world as you sit at Starbucks. You could let people see the process as you make stuff or use it as a way of sending a message to someone you see looking at you, lol. In my journal at this spot I then say a little prayer, that the good Lord that gives me these ideas will help me find a way of profiting from them.
  I and a bunch of other guys here are going to Moody tomorrow night for founders week and I hear that Ravi Zacharias is going to be there! If you've never head him preach, he is amazing, I highly recommend seeking his stuff out on line.
   I don't see many Mustangs in the city, which saddens me. The Mustang is my team! I had a 1968, and 1986 Mustang and dream of some day getting a new one. The 2012 Boss 302 puts out 444HP, about the same as the old LS6 1970 Chevelle, but weighs a lot less, has much better handling, gas millage, breaking and way less pollution. Then there is the new Shelby Mustang putting out 662HP, from the factory! The dang thing has a top speed of 200MPH! You do see a lot of the fugly Porsche Panameras down here, and while I admire it's 550HP and $180,000 price tag, I can't help but think it was a swype at the stereotype of Americans being fat that they named that fat car after us. Lets see, I think Lincoln should come out with a new Cougar with at least a 400HP Ecoboost and Ford should come out with a new GT-40 with a better name and the 662HP motor. Ok, check this out. If I had the money to do a crazy car, I would take two of the new Taurus SHO engines and drive trains out, tweak them a bit to around a nice 400HP. Set one in front of the other, put a seat in between and build a frame to fit. Those motors are V6's with twin turbos and a transaxle putting out 365HP from the factory.  Imagine 800HP, all wheel drive, and if you want to save gas, turn one off. The body... I still haven't made up my mind... something un expected would be fun... like a mini van, LOL.
   Pastor McNeil is an impressive man. There are no gray areas with him, except for his hair. He firmly believes that breaking the rules is a sin and is unequivocal about it.  I don't think I could ever be as firm and solid in the word as he is, but I'm glad someone is. He is also very funny when he teaches his classes, and can get the whole class laughing or he can excoriate the hardest hard-head to silence, an old school reminder of the fathers we used to have. He mixes up the solid, verbatim verses with examples of how he knows where we are coming from as he was there. "Oh yeah, I used to be a real good liar and people would believe me" he'd say, sitting half on the desk in the front of the room, hands together in front of his neat suit, locking eye contact for a second, then clicking on the next guy, "Oh yeah, I tell them straight up, come on over here and let me lie to you." at which all the guys would crack up. "When you used to want drugs, you where dedicated to getting them. People would ask me, where are you going and I'd tell them I don't know. And I didn't know. I just knew I was getting my drugs." At the end of each sentence he would stare at you to punctuate it. He is also very open about being a heroine addict when he first came to the mission back in 1989 or so, and how giving his life over to God has cleaned him up. He likes to relate things to you to help you understand life, like gardening, or keeping cars running right, and in his tiny, clean office he has at least 20 clocks of many designs and keeps the lighting warm.
   man, I hate to say this, but Ravi wasn't that great. The sermon he gave was bits and parts of stuff I've heard already and much of it didn't seem stitched together right. Maybe it was an off night for him, or maybe I just saw a great man past his prime... what a shame.
   It got cold today, the coldest it's it's been all winter, but at 10 degrees, I've been in worse, much worse. Back in 1994 it hit -21 around Chicago, so cold that my Doc Martin boots relatively soft rubber soles would click on the cement. At night it was so cold that you could spit and it would freeze before it hit the ground. A guy I knew, Tony (I wish I knew his last name now, lol) and I had refurbishing the loft in the old corn crib at the farm so volunteers could have a place to sleep on weekends. The lofty was above an area used for a surgery ward, but fill mainly with donated blankets and the indoor area for Chloe the cougar. We had sealed all the many open slots in the walls, cleared out all the old junk, ran some lights, built a ladder up into the rafters for sleeping areas and installed a nice wood burning stove. This was done just in time for the freezing weather to hit. I was working 2nd shift at the Walgreens warehouse in Berkley, maintenance department and would rive up after work on Fridays to get there around 1AM. It just so happened that this weekend some very wealthy donors showed up and Jill let them have the loft all to themselves. I wasn't too happy as Tony and I had to sleep downstairs in the surgery ward with only a crappy old kerosine heater that did more stinking than heating. It was a tall, chrome and purple glowing thing I called the cloaking device. We kept every bit of our winter clothing on, covered ourselves with old blankets and still almost died. if you moved your arm, it was like touching ice. I told Tony, who was sleeping a few feet away, that this was dangerous cold... it's so cold dude, that to stay alive... to keep from dying, two guys... after not completing the sentence, Tony asked, "two guys would what?" I stammered a bit and said, "Naw, if I'm gonna freeze to death, I don't want to be found frozen to another guy." LOL


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