More eBay Auctions

Unfortunately, the mandolin didn’t meet the reserve on eBay, and didn’t sell. Much to my surprise, there were no bids in the last 12 hours of the auction. Maybe I’ve got a disordered view of the way eBay works.

Despite this setback, I’ve got two more auctions going on right now to see if eBay can redeem itself.

The first is a Yamaha SW1000XG sound card. It originally retailed for about $800 and as of this writing there is one $0.99 bid in, with no reserve. This sound card is supposed to be the bees pajamas, but I’ve never actually used it.

The other is a Belkin parallel data switch (yeah, really) that happens to still be in the original box. Again, the opening bid is $0.99 and there’s no reserve.

Belief

belief

…Seems to be the theme of the day. I did a good job catching up on my Google Reader subscription list last evening. Then when I opened my Google home page this morning, the only two new entries were both entitled “Belief”.

At first, I was really scared. I thought someone was trying to tell me something – someone was challenging my faith.

Then, I realized that Gene reads the same blogs (Seth’s for instance) that I do.

In case you’re too lazy to click:

People don’t believe what you tell them.

They rarely believe what you show them.

They often believe what their friends tell them.

They always believe what they tell themselves.

Where does faith fit into this? At what point does the ‘faith of our fathers’ become what our hearts start telling us? How does evangelizing differ from marketing?

My Current Career

I haven’t talked much about my career. I’ve got a pretty good theory as to why this is. When I was in software, piddling unfulfilled in a cubicle all day, I had plenty to complain about. Now I don’t have time to complain because I’m busy doing the work that I absolutely love.

What do I do? I’m a youth minister. I’m entrusted with entertaining, enlightening, and listening to high-school aged teenagers.

A large part of my work play is marketing (which I really love in the small-scale sense that I do it).

An even bigger chunk is learning (learning about stuff I love – theology, history, and the ministry of Christ).

And the most fun I get to have is the time I get to mentor, teach, speak, sing, hang out, and talk with the young people. There’s so much they can teach me about life and how I don’t have to get old.

…but wait, there’s more

I’ve just recently decided that I’m being strongly called to being a guest speaker/musician/singer/storyteller (I’ve got to get a shorter name for it – comment if you’ve got something). The idea is that I’ll come share my stories, insights, and music with participants at youth rallies, retreats, conferences, etc.. This sort of thing really excites me. I’ve been in youth ministry (in some form) for the past 6 years (I’m 27), and I’ve been playing liturgical music for the past 15 years. I’ve taught executive training courses, middle school, and elementary school.

The trouble is, I don’t really know how to get started. The first gig is always the toughest to get “well where have you done this before?” One lucky part is that I have a captive audience of teenagers that are very supportive of me. Teenagers are honest. They also have very little tolerance for mediocrity.

Here I go again into uncharted waters…

Family Life July ’06

As promised, and update on the family:

  1. It’s a… Ok, so we won’t know the sex of the baby for another 2 weeks, but Cindy and I are expecting our third child in December!
  2. What do you DO all day? Mom works at home with the kids, and I’m working at home. Since I’ve got some flexibility in hours, we occasionally will take a trip to the zoo or go on a shopping excursion. Note that lately, these have been infrequent because it’s so hot. Note, too, that when the weatherman claims that it’s 165 degrees with the heat index, don’t step outside lest you melt.
  3. This update was short. I really just wanted to make sure everyone know I was gonna be a daddy (again). I really do love fatherhood – even after getting peed on at the 4th of July festivities.

Clear Like Tar

Contrary to my normal behavior, I’ve been a stranger lately. Not just because I haven’t been communicating much. When I have communicated, it hasn’t been deep. So I’m going to treat everyone to a few posts that are deep.

  • Family Life – what’s new with the family?
  • Career – it’s funny how I don’t complain when I’m enjoying it.
  • Uncle Widget – what’s the real story, what’s the process?
  • Bingbit – why I’ve been quietly calculating my next move.
  • …much much more! Stay tuned over the next couple of weeks.

I started this blog over a year ago. My modus operandi is sharing. I just haven’t been fully utilizing this venue lately.

I’ll be back soon!

Wikipedia GTD Mention

The GTD with Gmail Whitepaper gets a mention in Wikipedia (Principles of GTD Organization) and an external link. It’s pretty awesome that the author mentioned me by name. I love the smell of The Long Tail.

A (quite infrequent) review of Google Analytics showed a big spike in traffic (zero-something) referred from en.wikipedia.org and I thought “now that’s a new referrer.” No wonder my comment spam has gone through the roof lately.

Transparency of The Web

After this post, I got an email from a friend asking my opinion on how much information is “safe to reveal” on the Internet.

In the above referenced post, I write about how a website is becoming a must-have. But how far is too far? You’ll find that I’m a pretty transparent web-body. Maybe that’s a bad thing. I’ve had my identity stolen once, in early 2002. That’s pretty early when you think about it. That was before the blogosphere was much more than a flame-war over comments by Senator Trent Lott. I’m pretty sure some of my info was lifted out of a compromised e-commerce database. Very little is safe.

You probably want to stay away from loosely mentioning home addresses phone numbers, though the information is easy enough to find if you’re looking. I try to draw the line at extremely personal information about my children. If you look at the world through “they’re all out to get me” filters life won’t be too much fun. If you play fast and loose with all aspects of your life, they’ll all be out to get you.

Anonymity is possible on the web, but I think it makes you less real. Sometimes it’s hard to give a stranger the benefit of the doubt. Sometimes they deserve it, though. Be careful, but please have fun.

“My Webwhat?”

Since I spend about 90 minutes a week with a large group of high-school students, I get to spend time picking their brains about the ins and outs of culture and the vast teenage wasteland. Even with myspace being “so wicked awesome” and pervasive, I’d guess that 50% of the high-schoolers I know don’t even use the Internet. At all.

This is astounding to me. We’re not talking about nonagenarian Luddites. I’ve been out of high school for nine years now. I am and early adopter (read: freaky nerd boy), but I used the internet all four years. This is the mid-nineties we’re talking about. I’m dumbfounded.

I imagine that this is a pretty good representation of the general population (the number of teenagers on the ‘net certainly isn’t any lower than the rest of people). I like numbered observations lately, so here we go.

  1. If you don’t have an email address right now, there’s an issue. I know you aren’t reading this if you don’t have an email address though (about 30% of my high-schoolers have email addresses).
  2. If you don’t have a website right now, you’re slowly being left behind (100% of my teenagers who use the web have a website – as long as you count their MySpace profile).
  3. The transparent nature of the web is dangerously beautiful. Parents need to be concerned. Parents need to visit the websites of their kids. Parents need to build their own websites that are appropriate, responsible, and that their friends and colleagues know about. So do you.
  4. Go do it now. You can do it for free. I don’t care if it’s MySpace, Squidoo, Blogger, or WordPress.

No, really. Go do it now. There’s a strong chance that every last soul reading this article has a site (of some sort). Print it and give it to your siteless friends.