This is the interesting and exciting blog of Christop - one of the 84 000-or-so people of Ballarat.

Thursday, July 31, 2003

EuripidesOn Tuesday I went to the uni book shop to get my copy of The Bacchae. Unfortunately they were out of copies. They could have a copy in by Friday, which'd have been real good if I ahdn't ahd to have read it by yesterday morning.
So I tried all the bookshops in town. They all had collections of Euripides' plays, but none contained The Bacchae. I did, however, find a copy of The Odyssey, which I have to read for next Wednesday, for only $5.
I eventually got a copy of it from Mt Helen library. But not the H.R. Dodd translation, which we were supposed to read. It was a translation by this Nigerian guy called Wole Soyinka.

Anyway, it turned out that translation was sufficent.
In the Myth & Mythmaking tutorial, Alice was talking about the scapegoat archetype (an example of which, is Teiresias). Because this archetype is based on the scapegoat from Jusaism, Alice asked if anyone had a Bible. I was the only one, so she asked me to find the bit in Leviticus that talks about the scapegoat. So I found it, explained the context of the passage, and then read it out.
Then Alice said that Jesus is often compared to the scapegoat. This girl who was sitting two seats down from me said that he was more often likened to the sacrificial lamb. I wondered if maybe she was a Christian too.

Anyway, after Students for Christ, while having lunch, I was talking to Erin about it. She realised I was talking about one of her friends, who'd also told her about it earlier. Her names Naomi, and it turns out she's also Hannah's sister.

Gave Bonny the Bible I got her, during Mass Media. (She didn't come to Myth because she's been up until 4am doing stocktake at her work.) She spent most of the lecture reading it. She said she really wants to come to church, but she ahd to work on Sunday. Said she could come to small groups that night, and she said she might if she wasn't too tired.
Turned out she was to tired though.

This morning I got rid of a heap of books I didn't want anymore. Remnants, Cairo Jim and Redwall books all went in the op shop bin. Asterix books went to Devo.

This afternoon I contacted this guy to get my carpet cleaned. He'll be coming in on Tuesday

I'm at the SMB library, and there's been this girl walking around with a post-it note over her mouth.

Monday, July 28, 2003

On Saturday we had this discipleship training seminar at our church, which was good.
On the way there Scotty told me that Woody would be moving in next Saturday. Luckily we have a spare room. But this means that once I've got the carpet cleaned (requirement) and found somewhere else I can move out.

Saturday afternoon went up to Warrick (just north of Maryborough) for Dundee and Sonia's engagement party, which was great. Scotty, Devo and I got them a baking dish. Some of Dundee's high school friends got them a heap of disposable nappies.

Sum of All FearsSunday afternoon went to Shaft's place for lunch, with Tab and Kelly. Watched Sum of All Fears, which was decent. And John and Tab spent about an hour fighting over a cushion.

Sunday night, after church, Flip wanted to pray for Uganda, that God'll take away the power that the Lord's Resistance Army {1|2|3} have over there. So Yolande came and prayed with us in the Long Room for a while.

We decided to go to La Porchetta (sorry James!) for tea. On the way there Flip was telling me about ho

Friday, July 25, 2003

This morning I went to the off-campus centre at SMB to enrol in Myths & Symbols A & B. They said when I went in yesterday but couldn't enrol due to lack of proof of concession that I could come in today. However they were closed. So I'll have to enrol Monday.

Then I went to Centrelink to find out why they reduced by payment again. The girl at the desk reckoned it was a mistake, just like three months ago. I reckon.

So far today it has been sunny, rainy and hailing.

Thursday, July 24, 2003

This afternoon I got some leather shoes and a decent shirt (grey) for Dundee and Sonia's engagement party, in Maryborough Saturday afternoon.

Had Myth & Myth-making yesterday morning. I think it should be interesting - except that we're going to be using Jungian psychoanalysis once again. Anyway, by next Wednesday I have to have read Bacchae, and about halfway through the semester we're studying the Bible*.
We have to read Genesis 1-14 and one version of the Gospel.

After class, as I was walking to the Library to find Bacchae, Bonny asked me, 'You read the Bible a lot?' She was going to the Library too.
I said, 'Yeah**.'
'Could you give me, like, a summary of the bits we have to read?'
'Yeah, sure. I'll e-mail it to ya.'
I said I had a contemporary translation of the Bible (The Message) I could lend her if she wanted.
She said she's like that. And she asked me what I thought about studying the Bible as myth. I said that, sure, it you could study the Bible as just a myth. She said that she'd probably find it easiler to do that.
She asked where I go to church, and I told her. Then she asked if she could come to church. I completely wasn't expecting that. So I said we had church on that night if she wanted to come. She couldn't; she had to work. But she asked when the Sunday services were, and I gave her the details.

In the afternoon I had Mass Media, which looks like it'll be as good as Issues with in TV.

Scotty's given me this book he has called The Case for Christ. Since I'm not reading anything at the moment (except the Bible - haven't got Bacchae yet), I think I'll read it. According to Scotty, it's written by this skeptical journalist who went out to try and prove that the Gospels weren't true, and ended up becoming a Christian in the process.

*The Bible is myth. A myth is a story which is very significant to a group of people. Just because it is a myth doesn't make it fiction.
**Been reading it heaps lately.

Have a look at Umar's blog, documenting the situation in Uzbekistan.
Achtung: The blog includes photos of cadavers, which may make you feel rather sick. Among other tortures, these men have been boiled alive.

Tuesday, July 22, 2003

The weekend was great.
Left for Melbourne at about 9:30pm Friday. Managed to get to my parents' place in Ferntree Gully by 12:30am, without using the Melway* or knowing what road we were on most of the time. Only had to do four u-turns. One was in Melton anyway, and I shouldn't be expected to know my way around Melton; and two of the others were on the same road, so I reckon they cancel each other out.

The advanced leadership training was great. We learnt a lot of stuff about making Christianity relevant not by changing our beliefs to fit in with the current culture but by being a part of the culture without changing our moral standards.
Making God Famous was about that too, and also about being people of influence.
Yesterday I read the Book of Daniel. Although he was integrated into Babylonian culture, Daniel kept his faith, he continued to honour God over the human authorities.

Yesterday classes started again, so I had Short Story in the morning. Worked in the evening. Ren, from my course, has started working with us now.

This morning was going to be the first Camp St prayer meeting, but it turned out we couldn't get the room for it, so we just went to the Central Square food court and did some planning.

*Because Trav's Melway is a little hard to use, being from 1989. It was the first one to include the Mornington Peninsular. And of course it doesn't have MoronLink.

Monday, July 21, 2003

Devo just sent me this:

> This is VERY good
> Try this soon, before Google fixes its site:
> 1) Go to;
> 2) type in (but don't hit return): "weapons of mass destruction";
> 3) Hit the "I'm feeling lucky" button, instead of the normal "Google
> search" button;
> 4) read what appears to be a normal error message carefully.

Thursday, July 17, 2003

Rise of the Rice

Maybe it was Clint’s fault for cooking so much rice. Maybe it was Wilson’s fault for just turning up with a Hawaiian, a barbeque chicken and a capriccosa without checking what was happening for tea. Maybe it was Shane and Doug’s fault for choosing pizza over stir-fry.
Maybe it could be blamed on Jamal’s Rice Emporium, where the cereal had been purchased several decades ago by Shane’s grandma. Perhaps it was Grandma Franklin’s fault.
Should the government have put more revenue into publicising the perils of poor kitchen hygiene? It could all have been avoided if someone had just put the rice in the fridge.

But the rice sat in the big, two-handled saucepan in which Clint had cooked it.
It began to dry out. By day three it had formed a crusty outer shell with the properties of translucent, white plastic; a sort of membrane.
By the end of second week, the pale mound had grown a large, dark, light-sensitive patch of mould. The moist rice granules of the interior had begun to communicate with each other. Using their collective cognitive power they found they could wonder, plan, experience emotion, memorise, philosophise, meditate and imagine.
Halfway through the third week the cognitive granules had built an information pathway running between the interior and the mouldy ‘eye’.

A housefly circled around the kitchen table, and eventually landed on the crusty, rice surface. She rubbed her front claws together in anticipation of the fetid meal and was consumed by the rice.
The rice was predatory.

‘Have you seen Doug?’ Clint asked Shane and Wilson as they sat in the lounge room, watching Snatch for the third time in as many nights.
‘Not today,’ said Wilson.
‘Prob’ly workin’ late again,’ said Shane.
Clint got up and went into the kitchen to refill his glass. He placed it on the table, opened the fridge and pulled out a bottle of lemonade which he opened and poured into his glass.
He jumped and spilled as he noticed that the saucepan, which had been only half-full of putrid rice was now overflowing onto the table.
He blinked, just to make sure his eyes weren’t having a joke at his expense.
‘’Ey, guys!’ Clint called out. ‘Yous noticed the rice?’
‘Yeah,’ Shane called back. ‘’S gone mouldy.’
‘Derr; Oh know that. Looks like there’s more of ‘t. ‘S overflowin’.’
‘Doesn’t rice expand?’ Doug yelled from the lounge.
‘Yeah, b’t tha’s when it’s bein’ cooked.’
No reply from the lounge room. Clint just stood stared at the rice. The rice blinked first.
What the?! thought Clint.
He went to bed.
Next morning he made an appointment with the optometrist.

Clint arrived home without an optometrist’s prescription, but some good advice – make sure you get plenty of sleep. He parked his light-blue VW Rabbit between Doug’s grey Magna and Shane’s dark green Commodore.
As Clint walked into the kitchen, his feet slipped, dropping him on the hard dirty floor. He got up, and noticed a trail of white goo leading into the lounge room. The house really needed a clean.
Clint noticed an overturned chair by the kitchen table and righted it – the guys must’ve been kicking the footy around again.
Clint saw that the saucepan was no longer overflowing. Must’ve been really tired, he thought. He looked inside, just to check. Except for a thin layer of pale scum, it was empty! Someone must’ve emptied it into the bin at last.
‘Anyone ‘ome?’ Clint yelled.
No answer.
Clint walked into the lounge room, and sitting on the couch, watching Oprah, was The Rice. It had grown, or swelled, to twenty times its size. It picked up the remote and switched off the television.
‘You ate them, didn’t you?’ said Clint, staring at The Rice as the truth slowly sunk in.
The Rice confirmed Clint’s suspicion with a deep, rumbling burp. The smell made Clint want to spew.
Clint began to tremble. If The Rice had eaten Doug, Wilson and Shane, what’d stop it from eating him too? He began to back out of the lounge room, into the kitchen.
Keeping eye-contact with The Rice, he noticed that it was trembling even more than he was. There was a trickling sound, and a dark puddle began to spread across the couch where The Rice was crouched. The Rice had wet itself! Clint was it’s creator, and it was afraid of him.
It began to ooze its way off the couch, toward the open window. It pressed itself up against the wall, and began to climb up, onto the sill. It perched there for a second, and then jumped out, landing on the ground with a splat.

The Rice sniffed the air; picked up the scents of carbon dioxide, methane and sweat. The smell of people. Civilization. Prey.
The Rice headed west, toward the Big City.

Uniting Church set to ordain gay priests
The Uniting Church appears set to allow practising homosexuals to be ordained as priests, amid warnings of a major split.
It is not known whether plans to amalgamate with the Anglican Church, would be affected by the passing of the proposal.
The merger of the two churches came a step closer when the assembly voted to approve steps to start the process on Tuesday.
The Anglican Church [already] allows gay priests, but they must be celibate.

Doesn't sound very uniting. And how can a church that's not united in itself amalgamate with another church? :S

Wednesday, July 16, 2003

Just had a look at the School of Behavioural & Social Sciences & Humanities timetable. I can do both Myth & Mythmaking and Mass Media on Wednesday and have Tuesday and Thursday to Sunday off! But I still have Myths & Symbols A and B to do off campus. Nevertheless, my timetable is a lot more flexibile this semester.

Tuesday, July 15, 2003

Well, as you can see from yesterday's first post, I'm back in Ballarat. Got home about 1:30pm Friday. Went to sleep about 4:30 pm and didn't wake up until 9:30am Saturday. I think that's the longest I've ever slept. It's 'cause I only got about two hours the night before.

Spent Saturday hanging out with Shaft. We listened to one of his Bible college lectures (over the net) about campus evangelism. Then we went into town 'cause Shaft wanted to get some new jeans with some money his parents sent him.
In town we ran into Paul from Rhinosaur (formerly Jonah). Said we'd probably be at the SMB gig (supporting bands: Sounds Like Chicken and Rogue) on Saturday. Paul said, 'You mean, "Definitely."' I realised later that I can't go - advanced leadership training weekend (for beach mission) at BCV (Bible College of Victoria) in Melbourne.

After tea (sosijiz and vegetables) we went to Harvey and Mary's place. They'd invited over for supper some of us young people; and the YWAM (Youth With A Mission) team (including Our Dave) who're staying in the Chapel the next two weeks before their three months in Nepal.

Sunday morning Shaft, Micky, Heather, Carin and I got welcomed into membership at church. There was no sermon - instead we were each asked to share what God's done in our lives. For me that was sharing how he healed me of major depression.

Sunday afternoon Trav got back from Bendigo, and Nathe left for Geelong. (Nathe's found an electrical traineeship there, which he started on Monday. He'll be back on weekends.)

Last night when I got home (after work and the youth ministry team meeting) I'd gotten a package in the mail. It's from Gary Rucci, a pastor at Southside Christian Church in Adelaide. It's a book he said he'd send me (after he spoke at Students for Christ conference), called Making God Famous. I've read about one third. More about it later.

Monday, July 14, 2003

The Homeless Guy is back!
He was offline for quite a while, much to my annoyance, but I've just found out he's back, and has some great posts up.

I passed Issues with in TV! Yeah!
And I'm back home! Yeah yeah!

Friday, July 11, 2003

Conference and Melbourne Super Week

Conference was absolutely fantastic! The best week so far this year. Here's what I got out of it:

    renewed vision in regards to my career - just have to make sure I don't lose it again thinking it's just out of my head
    renewed vision in regards to Camp St - since there's officially no Christian group there we're going to start the ball rolling with a Tuesday morning prayer meeting each week, starting week 1
    met this guy called Terrence, who went to Fairhills, but left the same year I started, and was friends with the same people as me
    being around other passionate Christians 24 hours a day; having worship and sermons three times a day; next to no sleep; and great food is just fantastic
    lovely scenery

Friday night I travelled down to Melbourne with Emily for the allnighter fundraiser (for Warrnambool beach mission) at Dark Zone in Box Hill.
Walked to Box Hill Station at 7am Saturday morning. Caught train to Boronia Station. Walked to parents' place in Ferntree Gully, arriving at about 9:30.
Slept most of the day.

Sunday morning went to my parents church, where I used to go. A few people said hello and then said that they didn't like either my long hair, my goatee, my black nails or a combination of the three. Mum said I'm not allowed to see Grandma unless I remove the nailpolish, but I can undertand why - Grandma would have said nothing to me, but given her Hell.
Sunday night went to church again. Boring. All of my old friends have quit, and I see why. Things are changing though...

Monday afternoon at Knox City I ran into Kate, who i pretty much haven't seen since the end of year 12. She was moving house this week. I also bought a new pair of pants (dark green cargoes) and a new pair of shoes. I've had the shoes I've been wearing over a year now, and they're falling apart.
Monday afternoon I went over to Laz's, and we went for a walk.
Found out that Phil's been sacked from the dairy (where Laz also works) for stealing, and is lucky he's not in gaol. Apparently he was turning up to work only once a week, but writing down on his time sheet that he'd been there all week. He has to work somewhere else till he can pay back what he stole from them.
We called in at LilYoda and Mandi's place. They've been living together about four months ago, with Mandi's baby, Reegan, who she had with her ex. Mandi's redoing her VCE. LilYoda's working at a restaurant as a chef.

On Tuesday it was my brother Justin's 14th birthday. Got him this paint pens he wanted from the art shop.
Went over to James' place and watched his more recent films, listened to music, and then went to Deakin so he could return some books. Deakin in Burwood's a strange looking campus. It has some really nice buildings and some shocking buildings. But that's better than being a completely horrible campus, like ACU in Fitzroy.

On Wednesday night I went over to Leigh's place (next street from my parents'). He's been working as a systems analyst at Sensis this semester as part of his course. And he's going to see Matchbox 20 next week.

Spent most of Thursday doing homework. Also went and saw my Grandma.
Met some friends from high school and my old church at the Pool Room in the evening.
Got home at 2:30am and talked to Beanie (who's in Perth, WA at the moment) for about an hour on MSN.

Later this morning I'm catching the train home. I'm hoping to get some sleep first.

Tuesday, July 08, 2003

I found this rather amusing since I'm half Spanish.

You're Spain!

You like rain on the plain, as well as interesting architecture and
a diverse number of races and religions.  You like to explore a lot, but sailing,
especially in large groups, never really seems to work out for you.  Beware of pirates
and dictators bearing bombs.  And for heavens' sake, stop running around bulls!
 It's just not safe!

the Country Quiz at the Blue Pyramid

I'm at Deakin with James, and it turns out everything here works even worse than anything at Ballarat.

So of course, I'm in Melbourne staying at my parents place. Conference was great. I'll be here until Friday morning, when I go back. I'll try to blog more about conference and my Melbourne super-week tonight.