Posting has been light, here, recently. Some things have been going on keeping me busy and middle. Here are the ones I'll tell you about:
New laptop. I just upgraded my old Toshiba Portege 3505 for a Gateway CX210S. Both are convertibles, which is to say that you can use it either as a laptop or a tablet. The monitor twists around, and you can write on it with a stylus. It's really cool: I've used it for classes, it comes with me on retreats or trips, and I take notes on it during sermons. I can have half a screen with BibleWorks 7, and half with Windows Journal. The older Toshiba had no internal optical driver. I had to plug in an external CD drive. But it was light and cool. The Gateway has a faster, dual-core CPU, twice the HD size, 1GB of memory, an internal DVD-RW drive, and a larger, very clear screen. I also got a 12-cell battery, so it could go a lot longer between charges. It is a lot heavier, though, but that's not a real problem.
What was a problem was that the cursor displayed as a big, black box instead of a dot. It took Gateway almost 2 weeks to hook me up with a driver upgrade that resolved the issue. Otherwise, getting a new pc is like moving into a new home. You have to install all your programs, copy all your files; and you have to uninstall the unwanted garbage that comes with the pc. (Gateway is not nearly as bad as Dell in that regard.)
Here's a funny thing: I got this great laptop for just over one-third of what the Toshiba cost some 5 years ago.
New Operating System. The laptop came loaded with Windows Vista Home Premium. This is my first experience with Vista, and danged if they didn't move everything around! So that's taken some getting used to. Thus far, I like it. It's definitely pretty! But I had to retrain myself on how to do some common tasks.
Microsoft OneNote. I gather that Windows Journal (which I'm used to) is to OneNote as Wordpad is to Microsoft Word. But OneNote is really taking some getting used to, and I'm still not comfortable with it. OneNote doesn't actually save discrete files; it auto saves whatever you're working on. I've watched a number of training videos and read some documents, but still really don't get how to organize what I'm creating. All those tabs... I just don't get it. I bet someone has a good page or post on it, but I've Googled in vain so far.
Scholar's Library: Silver - Logos Bible Software 3. I'm reviewing a new Bible Study(and more) program, and it's really taking some getting used to. It's massively powerful and very impressive, but even starting to use all its assets is (to me) not intuitive. There's just a lot to learn, but it's clearly worth it. Logos helpfully provides a lot of tutorial videos, and I've been working my way through them.
Hot times at Pyro. You can read all about it in this post, if you haven't already. Some brave anonymous professor writes about hearing God's voice and writing a book under divine inspiration. I had a few warm words to share. I thought I was probably going to be under heavy fire, but the comment thread seemed to be tapering off at 30-40 comments. Then boom! it took off, before coming to rest (so far) at 169. It never makes me happy when people get mad at me. However, some of the angry people were really kind of funny, if you look at it from the right angle.
It's what happens when you do write pointedly, and don't write anonymously.
Preaching. Some of the happiest times in my life are when I get to preach, and I just did. Read about it here, if you like.
Ouch. About two weeks ago in karate, we had one of those exercises I really enjoy. One student was surrounded by four others, each of whom was to attack with one strike, followed by the others in rapid succession. The person in the middle had to block that strike and respond quickly with at least three strikes of his own. It's a great workout; one of the students is a really excellent (and aggressive) black belt. Every encounter with him is educational. Often painful (and bruising!), but always educational.
Well, I was very winded, but doing all right for an old fossil — blocking, striking, pivoting, shoving my opponents into the others. But I have a kind of tricky right knee. A few times, I've done something and it has yelped at me to stop. So far, I've always stopped short of really injuring it.
But not that night. I probably pivoted clumsily, but all of a sudden my knee was out of it; and it was kind of hard to carry on without that knee. Sort of attached to it.
So I limped like Walter Brennan for quite some time, with a very sore knee. It still hurts. Unfortunately, I didn't injure my appetite. So I've been unable to do my hour-long lunchtime "power walks"... but I've been able to eat just fine. Clothes tighten, muscle tone declines....
Ah well, life of an old man taking karate with a bunch of younguns. Not likely to get much better.
Reading. I've also finished reading Tremper Longman (The Third, if you please)'s new commentary on Proverbs. I plan to do a review over at Pyro. Stay tuned.
Greeking — in public! Plus I've had a pretty steady output over at my Greekblog. I have really appreciated the folks who come regularly and interact betimes. I do hope the readership builds, and particularly among pastors. If your pastor isn't going there regularly, tell him about it!