Thursday, March 25, 2010

Time to remove HFCS from your diet

A group of scientists at Princeton University have released a study that shows that High Fructose Corn Syrup is bad for you, and makes you fat. What's worse, when compared with sugar, equal caloric intake of HFCS can result in weight gain where sugar does not.

I've been distrustful of HFCS for a while now (wondering to myself if this has something to do with the huge rise in diabetes in this country that, remarkably, seems to coincide with the increased use of HFCS everywhere), and we've been trying to remove it from our diet anyway, but this makes that far more important. It's time to go back to sugar folks, even if it costs a little more.

Now, the scientists that used to work for the tobacco industry claiming smoking was safe have apparently have moved on to defending high fructose corn syrup these days, so you are welcome to read their comments here.

As for us, we'll continue to purge our household and diet of something we don't really like the flavor of anyway. Goodbye HFCS, you won't be missed.


Tuesday, March 23, 2010

NAB & the church

NAB comes around every April in Las Vegas. It is the trade show for broadcasters, and covers everything from where to find a $5 cable to a news helicopter (considerably more than $5). When I first attended NAB it was very novel for churches to be there. Responses were usually along the lines of "You're with a church? And you want this switcher? Really?" as people tried to reconcile the idea of the little white steepled building they think of as church (disclaimer, the church linked to there is the church I went to as a kid and I have nothing but positive memories of it!) and the modern megachurches that have sprung up in the last twenty years or so.

Within about a five years the comments went from "a church? really?" to "we are targeting churches and other assembly halls with this product." It was a pretty stunning turnaround. Things have continued, and this year there is a Technologies for Worship Pavilion at NAB. I received an email today from Jason Rouse, representing NAB and this is what he had to say about this development:


The Technologies for Worship Pavilion offers comprehensive training for house of worship staff and technical volunteers and is the focal point for all things related to worship technology at the NAB Show. In addition, you may be interested in Destination Broadband - the newest broadband-centric exhibit at the 2010 NAB Show. It will be featuring technologies like online video platforms, streaming video, mobile video distribution, and much more.

Technologies for Worship Schedule:
Destination Broadband:


Personally, I think this is awesome that technology use in church is being embraced by the industry. One of my titles is "Technologist" and finding ways to apply technology to HDC to further the gospel is part of my job description. I'm excited by the prospect of higher visibility for churches at this year's show. I haven't been in a few years, and looking at my April I'm not 100% certain I can go this year either, but I think it's well worth writing about.

I'm certain that Jason was hoping I would publicize NAB here, and I'm happy to, but he also passed along a code that you can use to register for free if you would like to attend:


The reason I'm reaching out to you is because I have a special registration code for you to pass along to your readers, giving them access to the show – a $150 value - for FREE. This special pass includes the exhibit floor, the Opening Keynote and State of the Industry Address, Info Sessions, Content Theater, Destination Broadband Theater and Exhibits. All you and your readers need to do is visit to redeem or register at with the code A913.


If you can arrange a trip to Vegas in the middle of April, take at least a day and attend NAB. This is a fantastic opportunity to see the latest and greatest technology, and hopefully will cause you to think about great ways to enhance your ministry.


Sunday, March 21, 2010

Doing the Right Thing

Glen Thomas Dodge listed a Dodge Challenger on eBay, and apparently in updating the auction somebody screwed up and removed the reserve and the car sold for $29,100. This is an amazing deal for a popular, $45,000 car. Beyond amazing. Impossibly amazing.

But an eBay bid is a contract, and after freaking out for a bit, Glen Thomas Dodge did the right thing. They honored the auction and sold the car to the winning bidder at the eBay price.

I think they deserve props and a little free advertising for doing it right. Unlike a certain Hyundai dealer who made the same mistake and basically had to be forced to honor their auction by Hyundai Motor America...

So if you are in the market for a Dodge, you know where to start.


Friday, March 5, 2010

I miss the olympics

I grew up in western New York. About fifty miles from Buffalo. Needless to say snow, and lots of it, was part of my childhood. As a result, the winter sports were a big part of what we did. I think I went roller skating once as a kid. Ice skating? I went every chance I got. I loved it. Cross country skiing? Well, we didn't have to go far, that's for sure. We would walk out the back door onto the porch, put the skis on, and make our way out the backyard and into the fields and hills beyond. Not exactly a lot of pre-planning required... Although I've never been on a luge or a bobsled, they have their roots in the sleds with metal runners we grew up using and the big old wood toboggans that we'd use on the big hills.

As I got older I found a passion for Alpine skiing. By the time I graduated from high school, I was quite good. I never raced in any formal events, but I did race against a friend in a timed event called the Jeep Downhill Challenge or something like that. If I remember correctly I beat him by .01 second on one course, and he beat me by .01 second on the other course. Hey, at least we were consistent, if not terribly fast compared to the rest of the field. Having tried a lot of the events, or some semblance of them, makes it a lot easier to understand just how impressive what these athletes can do. And if you haven't tried these sports, trust me, these athletes are very, very good.

The first winter olympics I remember watching was 1984, mainly because we were living on Yap when the 1980 olympics happened (in New York state!) and there were no tv's there...

I caught a HUGE passion for the winter olympics when Bill Johnson came out of nowhere and won the olympic downhill, becoming a bit of a hero of mine. I've been hooked ever since, and every four years when the winter olympics comes on we watch as much of it as possible. In 2002 we actually went to Salt Lake and went to the events live, which was a tremendous thrill.

This year was a record year for the US, winning more medals than at any prior winter games with 37. That is very strange to me. In 1984 we won eight medals total. In 1984 the soviet union won 25 medals and east germany won 24. Both of those countries do not exist anymore (WILD!).

But the olympics are over now. I miss the competition. I miss the patriotism. I miss the thrill of victory and the agony of defeat. So now back to life, and we wait another four years for another round, this time in Russia. I honestly hope Russia has a HUGE showing at their own games. I kinda miss being the underdog...


PS - The most impressive moment of the olympics came on the last day. Click here and watch the video of Peter Northug of Norway sprint for the finish line at the end of a 50km cross country ski race. Ask yourself this question after you watch it: Do you really think you could ski that fast at the end of a 1 kilometer race? Now imagine doing it after fifty!