January Reading: Sherlock Holmes

I read a bunch of Sherlock Holmes books. I thought I’d give you my impression of the whole series. The books I’ve read so far are…

  1. A Study in Scarlet, by Sir Arthur Conan Doyle.
  2. The Sign of the Four, by Sir Arthur Conan Doyle
  3. The Adventures of Sherlock Holmes, by Sir Arthur Conan Doyle.
  4. The Memoirs of Sherlock Holmes, by Sir Arthur Conan Doyle.

Full disclosure: I’m not entirely finished with Memoirs. So much Sherlock at once can become overwhelming. So I’m taking a break and who knows how long it will last.

Doyle writes like a Brit.

I love how the language style is so eloquent and sophisticated, much unlike the American English dribble. See? Even that sounded cooler than, say, this sentence. English can be so fantastic.

It isn’t like the movie.

Sherlock has flaws. He isn’t friendly. He’s a cocaine addict. And while exceptionally strong, he generally doesn’t deal with events as they unfold, but rather after everything is finished. I love the dimension it adds that he can be such a thinker, in love with the purest form of logic, but still be so deeply colored by his own quirky personality.

It’s worth reading at least a few stories.

Most of the books are collections of short cases (which I found more engaging), and others are longer accounts of longer stories. The clever solutions to seemingly insolvable problems are what draws you along. After a while it can start to drag, but reading one of the collections would be well worth the investment.

Why I’m Quitting Twitter

It’s distracting

I find myself waking up in the morning and the first thing I do is reach for my phone. In the midst of prayer I’ll think “I should tweet this”. Just this morning I was thinking how beautiful of a morning it was, and my first instinct was to tweet about it. Or how I heard about the Chris Thile concert this coming Monday and wanted to tell/invite everyone to come (you should come).

It’s voyeuristic

I end up knowing more about what folks are doing than I want to. People don’t realize how much information they share online. But more than that, my imagination runs wild. Relationships seem more real than they are, like I was there when they “just had a great time at the coffee shop”. Then disappointment comes when I realize I wasn’t there, and wasn’t invited either (and why should I have been? I barely know them!). That’s no way to live.

It’s not all bad

There are a lot of things I’ll miss about Twitter. Like how I was reminded about a Derek Webb concert. Or keeping up with people’s lives. Hearing of things to pray for. Catching glimpses of what peoples’ bible studies.There are a few relationships that Twitter was instrumental in developing. I’ve thought about quitting for a long time, but these relationships are all that’s kept me from doing it. I hope they stay strong (and get stronger).

But it’s bad enough to quit

My blog will still update twitter, and I will still get the emails about DMs. I may check for mentions every few weeks, but my consumption is cut off.

Pastor John wrote an article about Twitter before he joined. In it he worried that it would have negative effects. Well, it has for me and so I hereby quit Twitter.

Birthday Poems

Laura Rose Peterson (sent 1/24/2010, 1 day early)

Tomorrow it happens to be
A day remembered joyfully.
We think of a Rose,
Who did bloom in the snows
of a bleary, cold January.

Katie Burns (sent 2/2/2010, 1 day late)

A Katie Haas was born one day.
She lived her life, and all did say
How welcome they did feel with her.
Then she encountered Trenton Burns.

In love with him, she changed her name
To Burns also, one and the same.
And so I tell a love poem
With none of me, and all of them.

Andrea Froehlich (sent 2/2/2010, 39 days late)

A poem of guilt I give to you
Because you said you wanted one too.
I thought to give one every year
To celebrate the day most dear
When you were born. But I’m the fool
Because you made me break the rule.

James Medina (sent 2/16/2010, 2 days late)

Three days have past since you were last
the age of twenty four.
And life has gone so far along,
so far from Jersey shores.

Those summer days of hot, wet haze
we started to be friends.
I hope to be your friend as we
live long beyond the end.

My Roommate Won A Video Contest

Congratulations Tristan!

So last night I’m sitting downstairs and Tristan comes down all full of smiles. The first words out of his mouth: “I just peed my pants talking with Josh Harris on the phone.”

Tristan had submitted a video for a competition promoting Josh Harris’ new book Dug Down Deep. For getting the most votes from the public and the judges, Tristan wins a Canon 7D camera, pretty sweet! He’s been freaking out about it for the last 2 weeks, so I’m really happy for him.

Now go watch Tristan’s video!

Guarding God’s Glory Gone Wrong

“Before Abraham was, I am”

-Jesus, John 8:58

When learning a different language, the student is always confronted with the “to be” verb. In German: sein. In Greek: eimi. In Chinese: shì. In English it takes many forms: am, are, is, was, will be, etc. It captures the essence of existence, of being.

This is the most provocative, incredible proclaimation of Christ’s divinity I have ever read. Hearkening back to the very name of God,  Jesus claims something which only God can claim. He claims existence, pure and eternal. He claims to be God.

The pharasee’s picked up rocks to stone him. I would have too.