Wednesday, October 31, 2007

The Scariest Story this Halloween

Hey kids! Do you like scary stories?

Forget ghosts and goblins! Forget Frankenstein's monster and Count Dracula! CNN is carrying the scariest freakin' story this Halloween:

If you are unfamiliar with this, please check out Not for too long, though. Please.

I think the most terrifying line from that CNN article is "Now Kennedy uses 'The Way to Happiness' as a how-to supplement to his sermons. He believes it is easier to understand and clearer to follow than ancient Scriptures taken from the Bible."

WTF Pastor Kennedy? On this Reformation Day I have to point out that it's the job of well-educated preachers to put the Scripture in people's hands and teach them the difference between law and Gospel. The church should encourage people in a community of faith and help them illuminate Scripture with the aid of history, sacred tradition, and the Holy Spirit.

Most things are easier to follow than ancient Scripture! Is that suddenly a good measure of the theological worthiness of a text? Dr. Phil is pretty damn clear, should we just use his books?

Hell, no! To paraphrase Pastor Luther: Word Alone. Faith Alone. Grace Alone. No L. Ron Hubbard at all.

Hey! I have an idea! You want The Way to Happiness? Try this ancient text:

"Therefore I tell you, do not worry about your life, what you will eat or drink; or about your body, what you will wear. Is not life more important than food, and the body more important than clothes? Look at the birds of the air; they do not sow or reap or store away in barns, and yet your heavenly Father feeds them. Are you not much more valuable than they? Who of you by worrying can add a single hour to his life? And why do you worry about clothes? See how the lilies of the field grow. They do not labor or spin. Yet I tell you that not even Solomon in all his splendor was dressed like one of these. If that is how God clothes the grass of the field, which is here today and tomorrow is thrown into the fire, will he not much more clothe you, O you of little faith? So do not worry, saying, 'What shall we eat?' or 'What shall we drink?' or 'What shall we wear?' For the pagans run after all these things, and your heavenly Father knows that you need them. But seek first his kingdom and his righteousness, and all these things will be given to you as well."


Tryndee Nayme Wednesday LIVES!

The Dada Drummer has been locked in a dungeon drumming for several days--thus the eerie silence on this blog. But I have escaped long enough to provide you, gentle readers, with a Tryndee Nayme Wednesdy project.

Baby Girl, October 31
Daddy is a loud-mouthed former monk who likes writing hymns, teaching, and night travel.
Mommy is a high-minded, good-natured, highly-spiritual, stay-at-home mom. Loves cooking traditional German food.

Wie heisen sie? Sagen Sie mir!

Thursday, October 25, 2007


Magnificently Magical Monikers Mystic Minions!

The Dada Drummer has been very busy the last 24 hours preparing for a festival of drumming at her place of work, but seing all these names come in has provided much needed entertainment!

I enjoyed the Medieval ring of the Spanish Medievalist's suggestion: Odgarvaldo Hringzithoff Grindelwald. I especially like that her nickname might be Odd.

I was fascinated that posters like the Medievalist opted for Daddy 1's last name while others used the name of Daddy 2. Osler's choice of Larceny Trimble Dumbledore revealed an admirable loyalty to Albus (D.A. member maybe?) and a penchant for word names from his line of business.

Then again, some of you refused to commit to either paternal family name. I enjoyed iplawguy's butch entry Gandalf for the little gal as well as Dan Buck's musically magical Bippitie Boppitae Bue. The Dada Drummr always appreciates good literary allusions.

That being said, I have to announce that fresh blood poster Mrs. CL has wone the name challenge of the week with her witty pop culture entry: Symantha Cebryna Stevens. I hapen to know for a fact that Albus and Gellert both love Bewitched (Nick at Night is EVERYWHERE!). In fact, last Halloween Dumbledore went as Uncle Arthur while Grindelwald did his life-of-the-party Endora routine. You should have been there!

Thanks for playing Tryndee Nayme Wednesday. Meet me here next Wednesday morning for more ridiculous fun!

P.S. If you don't know the meaning of the title on this blog, you'll have to either use an on-line HP spell dictionary or find Brittany H.!

Tuesday, October 23, 2007

Tryndee Nayme Wednesday!

You did a good job last week, people. So let's increase the difficulty level. Your baby naming challenge is this:

Baby Girl October 24

Her Two Dads: Albus Dumbledore and Gellert Grindelewald. Both are accomplished wizards. One has a passion for traditional education. The other desires world domination.

What brilliantly magical tryndee nayme would these two geniuses bestow on their (adopted, non-muggle) baby girl?! You tell me!
p.s. special thanks to the meatball for this challenge idea!

Meet the Candidates, Part 2

Voting is still open for most awesome old hymn (see to your right). In the continuing Meet the Candidates series I now re-introduce you to a beautiful standard from the Teachers Union Party. This is a pretty little didactic hymn about the Christian life. My favorite aspect is its refusal to offer an easy image of prosperity to the believer. The firm foundation is better than that! It is the promise of constant companionship!

Plus its has a very singable melody and you can dance to it. If you're a shaker.

How Firm a Foundation

How firm a foundation, ye saints of the Lord,
Is laid for your faith in His excellent Word!
What more can He say than to you He hath said,
You, who unto Jesus for refuge have fled?

In every condition, in sickness, in health;
In poverty’s vale, or abounding in wealth;
At home and abroad, on the land, on the sea,
As thy days may demand, shall thy strength ever be.

Fear not, I am with thee, O be not dismayed,
For I am thy God and will still give thee aid;
I’ll strengthen and help thee, and cause thee to stand
Upheld by My righteous, omnipotent hand.

When through the deep waters I call thee to go,
The rivers of woe shall not thee overflow;
For I will be with thee, thy troubles to bless,
And sanctify to thee thy deepest distress.

When through fiery trials thy pathways shall lie,
My grace, all sufficient, shall be thy supply;
The flame shall not hurt thee; I only design
Thy dross to consume, and thy gold to refine.

Even down to old age all My people shall prove
My sovereign, eternal, unchangeable love;
And when hoary hairs shall their temples adorn,
Like lambs they shall still in My bosom be borne.

The soul that on Jesus has leaned for repose,
I will not, I will not desert to its foes;
That soul, though all hell should endeavor to shake,
I’ll never, no never, no never forsake.

Fear not!

Friday, October 19, 2007

Meet the Candidates, Part 1

There has been some voting in the favorite hymn poll, but not as much as I'd expected. Is it possible that some of you just don't really know the candidates? Let me try to fix that with a few postings. Here is the first offering:

Meet "This is My Father's World"-- a candidate for the Green party of hymns and a really lovely American romantic poem.

This is my Father's world,
and to my listening ears
all nature sings, and round me rings
the music of the spheres.
This is my Father's world:
I rest me in the thought
of rocks and trees, of skies and seas;
his hand the wonders wrought.

This is my Father's world,
the birds their carols raise,
the morning light, the lily white,
declare their maker's praise.
This is my Father's world:
he shines in all that's fair;
in the rustling grass I hear him pass;
he speaks to me everywhere.

This is my Father's world.
O let me ne'er forget
that though the wrong seems oft so strong,
God is the ruler yet.
This is my Father's world:
why should my heart be sad?
The Lord is King; let the heavens ring!
God reigns; let the earth be glad!
It was written by a minister named Maltbie Babcock (there's a name for you!) and is said to have been inspired by his long runs through the countryside near Niagara Falls, New York. The story told of Rev. Babcock is that he would head out for his daily four-mile run by telling his secretary he was off to see his Father's world.

Be glad!

Thursday, October 18, 2007

Good Work People!

You have made Lady Liberty proud with your awesome names, readers!

I would pick a winner but there are too many brilliant names to choose just one. If some of you were more stupid, this would be easier to judge. Alas.

Now watch this space next week for another round of TRYNDEE NAYME WEDNESDAY!

Tuesday, October 16, 2007

Launching Tryndee Nayme Wednesdays!

The Dada Drummer hates to be out "cooled" by the likes of lawyers and grad students. Therefore, I declare that hump day shall from tomorrow forward be known as Tryndee Nayme Wednesday.

Here's the plan: I'll provide you with a gender and a profile of baby's parents. You invent the hippest, trendiest, hottttest name you can. And no need to worry about counting syllables or finding witty rhymes!

Ready? Here's your first project.

Baby Girl October 17
Mom loves small firearms and target shooting. Dad operates a successul car dealership. Both are GOP fund raisers by night.

Now show me what you got!

Monday, October 1, 2007

Jesus and the Zombies

A couple of weeks ago, something funny happened at church. I can't get it out of my mind.

A little baby was being baptized (yes, that's right my Baptist and C of C friends, we do infant baptism!) and as part of the ceremony the congregatoin was declaring our communal faith with the Apostles creed. We say a creed every Sunday (again, shudders from some corners, I know!) but this time it has been written out in a different format in the worship bulletin in order to accomodate the ceremony.

But there was a typo.

It ought to have read:
"On the third day he rose again; he ascended into heaven, he is seated at the right hand of the Father,and he will come to judge the living and the dead."

But instead was written:
"On the third day he rose again;he ascended into heaven,he is seated at the right hand of the Father,and he will come to judge the living dead."

And everyone said it! I mean, we all know the creed. We could see that there was a problem. But because it was written in the bulletin, everyone just said it. Me included! "The living dead." And to be polite, no one even laughed out loud.

I have to say that it scared me. I don't know how to feel about our communal willingness to declare incorrect words in the creed. I mean, what if one Sunday our worship bulletin ended the Apostles creed with with the words:

"I believe in the Holy Spirit,the holy catholic Church,the communion of saints,the forgiveness of sins,the resurrection of the body, the unquestioned diety of our pastor Paul, the principle of plural marriage, the godhead of Shiva, and purple Kool Aid. Amen. "

Would we say it? I couldn't help but wonder if the typo was some kind of test!

Is it bad that I'm kind of tickled at the mental image of Jesus judging a horde of the living dead? Do you suppose zombies even pay attention to the Lord of lords? They wouldn't try to eat His brains would they?! I think not--I mean, its Jesus after all. But I have to admit I don't know much about the subject. I don't watch a lot of zombie movies.

But none of this is what I've really been mulling over since the typo in our church bulletin.

In spoken language we call a mistake that reveals a hidden truth a "Freudian slip." I don't know what to call it when its written...but I sure do smell a hidden truth in this.

Because in the end, Jesus will indeed judge the living dead. He will take a good hard look at the zombies. Zombies are those people who walk through a half life, a life chained to fear and insecurity. A life of vain self-interest and trivial preoccupations. A life centered around things other than the Light.

In other words, the Living Dead aren't brain-eating movie zombies. They're much scarier. They're us.

Apart from God there is only the zombie walk of the living dead. But in Christ we have met the Way to be more than the living dead. Jesus shouts our name and calls us out of zombie life and into a fantastic eternal dance. His death kills the zombies and His resurrection creates something entirely new.

The moral of this lesson: Jesus slays zombies.