Friday, January 30, 2004

I've not done it in a while... here are my Friday Five:

You have just won one million dollars:

1. Who do you call first?

Hmm. My sister, probably, closely followed by my Dad and stepmom, brothers, and best friend.

2. What is the first thing you buy for yourself?

I'd pay off my debt. Other than that, probably a house.

3. What is the first thing you buy for someone else?

I'd probably buy my sister a new truck.

4. Do you give any away? If yes, to whom?

I'd give half away. If it were more I'd set up a foundation, but $500K makes it not really worth the effort. I'd probably give a chunk to my parish school's endowment fund, then some to my old parish, and the St. Elizabeth of Hungary Clinic.

5. Do you invest any? If so, how?

Yes, I'd probably invest most of it. I'd get a financial advisor, but it would probably go in index funds.
Yahoo Obnoxiousness

I got this in an email from a Yahoo group I'm on, it's worth checking out:

For those of you concerned with security, you might want to opt out
of Yahoo's "research". Here's the skinny.

Dear Friends,

Yahoo is now using something called "Web Beacons" to track Yahoo
Group users around the net and see what you're doing and where you
are going - similar to cookies.

Take a look at their updated privacy statement:

About half-way down the page, in the section "Outside the Yahoo!
Network", you'll see a little "click here" link that will let
you "opt-out" of their new method of snooping. I strongly recommend
that you do this.

Once you have clicked that link, you are opted out. Notice
the "Success" message the top the next page.

Be careful because on that page there is a
"CancelOpt-out" button that, if clicked, will *undo* the opt-out.
Feel free to forward this to other groups.

This is something NEW, not the regular stuff where you just check the

Thursday, January 29, 2004

A few days ago my e-buddy Brenda ElfGirl blogged about how shocked people in her church were that the pastor prayed for the President. Today's Star has an article about the Presidential Prayer Team, a group founded in Tucson to pray for the President. They have about 3 million members! The group claims that they will pray for the President regardless of his party affiliation. They also pray for the Veep and other staff leaders. Here's a sample prayer for Cheney:

Pray for the vice president as he prepares to celebrate his birthday on Friday, January 30. Pray that he will enjoy blessing, health, wisdom and strength as great gifts from God, and that he will seek to know and do God's will in the coming months and years.

Sunday, January 25, 2004

Music for Mass
SSPP Latin Schola
Third Sunday in Ordinary Time, Year C

Prelude: Locus Iste (Bruckner)
I Have Longed For Thy Saving Health (Byrd)
Gathering Song: One Spirit, One Church (Keil)
Penitential Rite: Kyrie (Chant Mass)
Gloria: (Chant Mass)
Responsorial Psalm: Psalm 6 (Domincan tones)
Gospel Acclamation: (Chant Mass w/verse of the day)
Preparation of the Gifts: Adore Te Devote (St. Gregory Hymnal #227a)
Holy,Holy: Sanctus (Chant Mass)
Memorial Acclamation: (Chant Mass)
Great Amen: (Chant Mass)
Our Father: (Traditional Chant)
Lamb of God: Agnus Dei (Chant Mass)
Communion: Soul Of My Savior (ANIMA CHRISTI)
Meditation: Ecce Panis Angelorum (St. Gregory Hymnal #317)
Recessional: Holy God, We Praise Thy Name (GROSSER GOTT)

Wednesday, January 21, 2004

Rumors of my death are unfounded! :-) Seriously, I got back home Monday evening and I've been swamped with stuff to do.. I'll relate some quick thoughts though.

I was in Atlanta Monday to Wednesday. It's a nice place. I had a good visit with our folks in the office there, and had some productive meetings. Since there's a nonstop Delta flight from Tucson to Atlanta getting to/from there is not bad. I got back Wednesday night, got off the plane, and was hit with the smell of rain. It was so beautiful, it almost made me cry. There's something wonderful about the smell of the desert after a rain that is just the most wonderful smell, something that any desert dweller immediately recognizes. I'm told it's the creosote bushes, or maybe the mesquite.

Thursday I drove out to Palm Springs for our company kickoff meeting. Two days in Palm Springs at the Doral Desert Princess Resort! It was terrific. I got to meet almost everybody in the company, which, since we are a pretty far-flung company, is a very good thing. The actual meeting was Friday morning, and was very encouraging. We are doing very well, we're growing, and our hard work is paying off. It makes me very happy (once again) that I made the choice to work here.

After the meeting we had company-sponsored activities in the afternoon; I chose horseback riding. I'd not been on a horse since Thanksgiving of 2000, so it was nice to get out and ride again. Of course the horses were pretty docile and we mostly just followed each other in single file. The terrain was pretty rocky and broken, so no galloping for us -- once in a while a quick trot is all. It was about an 8 mile ride in a bit over 2.5 hours. After the riding I had dinner with my team and we talked about our progress and what's coming up. I've got a good bunch of folks working for me, I'm very lucky that way.

Saturday morning I slept in, then drove to Oxnard to visit friends. Saturday night I had dinner with my friends Bill and Wayne, former coworkers when I worked for the Navy. They are still working there. We had a nice dinner at one of the fancy restaurants down at Channel Islands Harbor.

Sunday morning I went to 9:30 a.m. Mass at Santa Clara Church, my old parish. It's a wonderful, wonderful place that was my spiritual home for the 6 years I lived in Oxnard. It's a beautiful old church, 100 years old, that is in the midst of extensive retrofitting due to earthquake damage and to safeguard it for the future. If you are so inclined you might check out the website and send 'em some $$ to help, it's a worthwhile endeavor. After Mass I saw a number of old friends and spent some time talking to them. Considering I'd not lived there in 12 years it is nice to be remembered.

After Mass I had lunch with my friend Bill, and he gave me a tour of the base where I used to work. Many things have changed, new buildings etc., but much is still the same. It's more than a little weird to go in the lab and see machines that you first set up 14 years ago, still humming along and doing their jobs.

After we parted, I went to go skating at the rink in Oxnard, then had some dinner and went and relaxed at the hotel. Monday morning I got up and drove home to Tucson, getting home just in time to go to Collegium Musicum rehearsal. Whew! It's good to be home.

Monday, January 12, 2004

I'm in Atlanta today through Wednesday. Lots of traveling tends to make me grumpy so I'm having to fight off "a case of the Mondays." Fortunately the trip out was pretty uneventful. Now it's time to go get some food...

Sunday, January 11, 2004

I've not had time to do more than skim this, but it's still amusing -- How to Deconstruct Almost Anything--My Postmodern Adventure. Since my minor area for my MS was science & technology studies I can readily appreciate this sort of thing.

Friday, January 09, 2004

I'm home again. It was a very, very long day. Some random thoughts...

I don't know how morning people in Eastern cities can take it. We were showing up for work at 8 a.m. in Indianapolis, and at that hour, not only was it bitterly, bitterly cold, but the sun isn't even up yet. Also the sun only was out the first day we were there. I don't think I would handle the lack of sun well.

My plane from Phoenix to Tucson was delayed, so I didn't get into Tucson until a bit after 10. Bleah! The trip from Phoenix to Tucson was on a CRJ-900, a smaller jet. We got to walk across the tarmac and go up the steps to the plane, just like in the old days... it was fun.

From 7 a.m. Wed. until 10 p.m. tonight (Friday), I managed to read 724 pages of the 5th Harry Potter book. I'm almost finished. It's a great book.

Our trip was not as successful as I would have liked, but we did accomplish a lot.

Thursday, January 08, 2004

This is very cool -- The Queen Mary 2 was christened by Queen Elizabeth today.

In other news, it snowed in Indianapolis today. Whee!

Wednesday, January 07, 2004

I'm in Indianapolis today for work; I flew out this morning frightfully early from Tucson. It was a mostly uneventful travel day. Some images:

A bunch of F-16s were taking off at TIA before my plane left. It's interesting to me how my reaction to them is different (still) than before 9/11. I wonder about the pilots and their training, and whether someday they will be called upon to defend American skies instead of fighting over someone else's.

It was 27 degrees (F) when we landed in Indianapolis -- with a clear blue sky. It just amazes me. Weather in Tucson was so much warmer! Our work bunch went out to dinner and were walking around downtown -- it's amazing how the wind cuts through, even though I'm wearing my "It's Winter!" London Fog overcoat. Brrrr!

Marriott Courtyard hotels have free Internet access! Very cool.

I started reading the 5th Harry Potter book (Order of the Phoenix) this morning. I got through 195 pages on the trip so far...

Sunday, January 04, 2004

My belated Friday Five:

What one thing are you most looking forward to . . .


A nice quiet evening at home.

2. ...over the next week?

My skating lesson on Friday.

3. ...this year?

Paying off my car in June.

4. ...over the next five years?

Buying a house.

5. ...for the rest of your life?

Finding Ms. Right, getting married, having children, growing old?

Thursday, January 01, 2004

While surfing I came across a pretty cool weblog for the St. Cecilia Schola Cantorum in Auburn, AL. It looks like a neat group. Latin really is making a comeback in the Church.

Happy New Year

Happy feast of Mary, Mother of God

The Virgin

Mother! whose virgin bosom was uncrost
With the least shade of thought to sin allied;
Woman! above all women glorified,
Our tainted nature's solitary boast;
Purer than foam on central ocean tost;
Brighter than eastern skies at daybreak strewn
With fancied roses, than the unblemished moon
Before her wane begins on heaven's blue coast;
Thy Image falls to earth. Yet some, I ween,
Not unforgiven the suppliant knee might bend,
As to a visible Power, in which did blend
All that was mixed and reconciled in Thee
Of mother's love with maiden purity,
Of high with low, celestial with terrene!

--William Wordsworth

I've often thought that it's singularly appropriate that this day when we look back and forward is a feast of Our Lady. What more appropriate image than She who, in her own body, bore the Alpha and Omega, the beginning and end? She herself was the door through which the old ended and the new began. Pray for us, Holy Mother of God, on this day and at the hour of our death.

My resolutions for last year were:

  • Clean up/out my house
  • Lose more weight (goal: 200 lbs.)
  • Visit family and friends more often, especially those far away.
  • Attend 2003 Phi Mu Alpha Sinfonia National Assembly in Washington, D.C. in August.

Alas, I did precious little on the first. On the second I made progress (13 lbs) but had 12 lbs or so to go. The third I didn't do that well at, and the fourth was a loss. So... mustering up my optimism, here are my resolutions for this year:

  • Clean up/out my house
  • Lose more weight (goal: 200 lbs.)
  • Visit family and friends more often, especially those far away
  • Pray more

I'll also have some resolutions on my skating blog, no doubt.
Music for Mass
Gordon Zaft, cantor; Kyle Frank, pianist
Solemnity of Mary, Mother of God, Year C

Gathering Song: Good Christians, All Rejoice (IN DULCI JUBILO)
Penitential Rite: (spoken)
Gloria: Christmas Gloria (GLORIA/Gibson)
Responsorial Psalm: Psalm 67 (Respond & Acclaim)
Gospel Acclamation: Christmas Gospel Acclamation vs. 5 (Haas)
Preparation of the Gifts: O Holy Mary (Alstott)
Holy,Holy: Mass of Creation (Haugen)
Memorial Acclamation: Mass of Creation (Haugen)
Great Amen: Mass of Creation (Haugen)
Our Father: Yantis
Lamb of God: Mass of Creation (Haugen)
Communion: Holy Is His Name (Talbot)
Recessional: Let There Be Peace On Earth (Miller & Jackson)

I'm glad to see that apparently OCP has decided (re: Let There Be Peace On Earth) that it's okay for us to be "brothers" again. You might want to re-visit Richard Chonak's version of In Terra Fiat Pax.

Also note that I belatedly posted the Christmas Mass Music (7 p.m. and 10 p.m.).