I always loved the slogan at Blimpy Burger in Ann Arbor, Michigan -- "cheaper than food". It sort of describes what Taco Bell has become, though. I'm not sure how they're making any money. Aria, Steve, and I had a massive buffet of Taco Bell food last night sometime around 10:30pm and only paid $16.00 for it. And seriously, you have to buy pretty much everything on the menu to rack up a bill of $16.00 at Taco Bell. Blimpy Burger, on the other hand (which I miss dearly) was expensive, greasy, complicated to order, and absolutely... divine. Sigh. I'm thankful that it's not a chain because that would ruin the trip we take to Mecca (Ann Arbor) every year to celebrate our anniversary and eat Blimpy Burger. Plus, no one else would do it right. There's a lady who will kick you out of line if you order your bun before your cheese. I'm not lying to you.
I've finished a couple of books recently. "RANT: An Oral Biography of Buster Casey" by Chuck Palahniuk was, in typical Palahniuk fashion, disjointed, seemingly random, disgusting to the point of nausea for some (not me), and thoroughly enjoyable. There are few authors with an authentic, distinct style of their own and I'm fairly certain that Palahniuk tops the list. If you've never read any of his work and you are somewhat prone to vomiting easily, I'd steer clear. If you have a strong stomach and a warped worldview, this is the author for you. "Fight Club", of course, is the best thing he's written, at least from my viewpoint. But I really enjoyed "Lullaby" as well, "Invisible Monsters", and I got partway through "Haunted" before my friend who gave it to me for my birthday 'borrowed' it and I haven't seen it since. Ahem. Scott. In case you're reading this. Or you know Scott and are reading this and can alert him to his crime.
The other one I read (and now for something completely different) was written by one of the pastors at Granger Community Church, Tim Stevens, and is called "Pop Goes The Church". Our church takes a lot of criticism from people who have either never attended but 'heard things' about it, have attended once or twice and are appalled at what they consider nothing more than entertainment, or well-meaning but sadly misguided "Christians" who want to cram churchy-church down people's throats because they assume that's the only way to save their souls. This book is for all of them, and for anyone who has been part of the churchy-church scene and fell off to the sidelines at one point or another when they were jaded by hypocrisy, had their feelings hurt by someone they looked up to, or just plain got sick of the superiority complex of most "Christians". (You'll notice that most of the time when I use the term, I put it in quotation marks. I have written a draft of a book on hypocrisy, and it's difficult for me, to this day, to call people Christians without the quotation marks. I firmly believe that most people who call themselves "Christians" have absolutely no idea what the term means and would probably kick Jesus out of their church because he didn't fit in if they were to meet him in this day and age.)
The book is filled with true-life stories from our church and other similarly-minded churches who have leveraged pop-culture to the benefit of the Gospel. This doesn't mean we have shiny, sparkly things to lure you in and then you can say that you go to church and belong to our little club. It means that we "meet you where you are", to use a phrase repeated throughout "Pop Goes The Church". It means that we care about your comfort. It means that we don't think you need to be cleaned up for God to love you. It means that you don't have to jump through hoops just to show up. We make things as easy and as comfortable as possible for you to learn about the love God has for you and we are there to assist you on your journey in any way possible. I cannot stress enough that you should, whoever you are or wherever you are in any sort of spiritual journey or lack thereof,
As for my life in the last couple of weeks, well -- you know me. I've probably overloaded myself once again, but I'm not sure I know another way to live. We have rehearsals for RENT every night for three hours (four to five days a week), I have roller derby practice which I'm able to make once a week right now, work four days a week, cleaning houses one day a week, attempting to keep my own household in a somewhat livable order... now that the kids are on summer break they'll have a little more responsibility around the house. If I come home sweaty from work to see them lounging in their robes at the computers... well, at least the house can be vacuumed, right? :)
And I really wish it would stop raining on the weekends.