And now . . . this – Jul. 31/05

July 31, 2005

Maybe he just wants to play a round

A yearling moose wandering through town has decided to stay a while to enjoy the shade and water of a miniature golf course.

“He was headed somewhere when he came in here. We’re hoping that he takes a rest and one of these evenings returns to his journey,” state Game Warden Roger Bredehoft said Friday. . . .

The moose has spent several days at Oasis Mini Golf on the city’s south side. If it doesn’t move on, the Game and Fish Department may have to sedate and take the animal to the Snowy Range west of town.

[Full Story]

I think they’re missing out here on the obvious potential for promotion. “Make the moose leave, win a free game” or something like that.


Extraordinary popular delusions and the madness of crowds, 2005

July 31, 2005

Here we go again. Mary-shaped salt stains and statues weeping oil are one thing, but now statuary is coming to life. Great googly moogly, these stone juggernauts will kill us all!

Dozens of believers in New Jersey are holding a vigil this morning near a statue that they say – came to life.

The Sacred Heart of Jesus statue is the centerpiece of a nativity scene outside the Jackson Street public housing complex in Hoboken.

Some witnesses say they saw the statue open its right eye, and turn its head toward the crowd.

Many call the event a miracle that could help rescue the neighborhood from problems like drugs and violence.

[Full Story]

Mark my words, it won’t be long before the “healings” begin or “Jesus” starts mumbling vaguely pious religious platitudes about “returning to his Sacred Heart,” or telling people not to take the Eucharist in the hand, or whatever. “Catholic” superstition never fails to amaze. (I wish I could say that many evangelicals were not often so deluded, but alas, it isn’t true: Gold fillings, anyone?)

Well, that didn’t last long

July 30, 2005

Guess who’s back?

And now . . . this – Jul. 30/05

July 30, 2005

What, no eggs, toast, juice, and oatmeal?

THE ANGRY manager of Rugby Library has apologised to Muslims after a slice of bacon was found in a copy of The Koran.

The rasher had been placed in the pages of a reference copy of the book, which is available for general use.

Library manager Sandra Barnsley said: “I cannot believe anyone would do this, but they’re not going to win.”

[Full Story]

What’s the problem? If more Qurans had bacon bookmarks, the smell alone would be an enticement to read it.

(H/T: Dhimmi Watch.)

Friday in the wild – July 29, 2005

July 29, 2005

Heading into the long weekend, it’s time for the usual Friday roundup of the interesting, the fun, and the bloggy.

Tim Challies lays out some good guidelines for authors who want to cite Scripture in support of their arguments:

Before we go any further, let’s establish the purpose of using the Bible in a book. The goal in prooftexting or quoting from the Bible is to accurately represent and interpret God’s Word. We do not use the Bible to prove what we want it to say. Rather, we turn to the Bible to learn from God Himself, and then share what we have learned with others. We must have our priorities straight.

[Read The Proper Use of Scripture in Books]

The PyroManiac turns his flamethrower on the Fad Driven Church�:

So why has the recent culture of American evangelicalism – a movement supposedly based on a commitment to timeless truths – been so susceptible to fads? Why are evangelical churches so keen to jump on every bandwagon? Why do our people so eagerly rush to buy the latest book, CD, or cheap bit of knockoff merchandise concocted by the marketing geniuses who have taken over the Christian publishing industry?

. . . [E]vangelicals and fundamentalists alike “have a genuine affection for the ugly and the superficial, whether in their art, their preaching, or their devotion.” A few years ago, marketing experts learned how to tap into evangelicals’ infatuation with the cheap and tawdry and turn it into cash.

[Read Shall we sell our birthright for a mess of faddage?]

At Biblical Christianity, Daniel Phillips asks what the big deal is about the Trinity?

I’ve used this comparison. Suppose someone asks me if I am a Sean Connery fan.

“Love her!” I say.

Puzzled, the other asks me to describe Sean Connery.

“Oh, she’s a young Jamaican Country-Western singer, about 25, five foot five, braided hair, with a pegleg and a parrot on her shoulder.”

Obviously, we’re not talking about the same Sean Connery.

And so, if two people claim to love “God,” but one says that He is a single solitary person who sometimes adopts the guise of Father, sometimes Son, or sometimes Holy Spirit; and the other says He is one Being who has eternally existed in three distinct Persons – they are not talking about the same God. Theoretically, either may be right, or both may be wrong; but they cannot both be right. And it matters, given God’s hatred for false worship (Exodus 20:3; Leviticus 10; etc.).

[Read Trinity, Flinity, what’s the big?]

I thought I got some weird search queries now and then, but Jeremy at Parableman made me laugh out loud by posting searches on non-existent things, such as doctors who give non-pregnant women abortions. Jeremy’s blog is actually hit #127, which means this guy actually searched through 13 pages at least trying to find something on this subject.

Speaking of weird Google searches, come Thursday evening, I thought I was actually going to get away with another week of relative sanity. Then I was hit with requests for emma watson’s phone number, which I don’t have, and info about emma watson’s secret abortion, which I definitely don’t have. (If I did, it wouldn’t be a secret, would it?)

“I was just made by the Presbyterian Church”

July 28, 2005

Um . . . severe localization issues, to say the least. Matthew in Beirut posts vidcaps of a Chinese pirate DVD of Revenge of the Sith, complete with hilarious and inept English subtitles.

This is the sort of thing that happens when you translate from English to Chinese and back again, probably with the help of a machine.

Read it and laugh. I was crying.

(H/T: Ghost of a Flea.)

Looks like I spoke too soon

July 27, 2005

NASA grounded future shuttle flights Wednesday because a big chunk of insulating foam flew off Discovery’s fuel tank during liftoff – as it did with Columbia – but this time apparently missed the spacecraft.

“Until we’re ready, we won’t go fly again. I don’t know when that might be,” shuttle program manager Bill Parsons told reporters in a briefing Wednesday evening. . . .

The loss of a chunk of debris, a vexing problem NASA thought had been fixed, represents a tremendous setback to a space program that has spent 2 1/2 years and over $1 billion trying to make the 20-year-old shuttles safe to fly.

“Until we’re ready, we won’t go fly again. I don’t know when that might be,” Parsons told reporters in a briefing Wednesday evening.

[Full Story]

Ah, crap. Perhaps someone can explain to me how NASA can send men to the moon, but 35 years later, given two and a half years and a billion dollars, they can’t figure out how to keep insulating foam stuck to the side of a frickin gas tank?