Have you come here to play Jesus to the lepers in your head?

Archive for May 2007

Three Questions on Harry Potter

with 2 comments

I’ve meant to write about this for a while, and thanks to FFC and the Sword of Gryffindor, I have a good excuse. 

1) How/when did you become a Harry Potter fan?
Two summers ago – 2005.  Like most Christians, all I had heard about the books were the complaints that they encouraged kids to study witchcraft, disobey / disrespect their parents / authority figures, and an assortment of other evils.  I had seen the first film during its theatrical run, and while was entertained, the ending had confused me.  I could not discern any evil influence that compelled me to go out and learn to fly a broom, but I kept hearing all these rumors, so I never picked up the books. 

Two things finally compelled me to read the books.  On the counsel of two friends that the spells in the books came from actual occult material, I started to investigate some of the claims raised against the books.  Meanwhile, my brother and another friend—both Christians as well—kept telling me how excited they were about the release of next book (at that time, The Half-Blood Prince). 

After some reading, I figured that if the spells really do come from actual occult practices, no one has ever bothered to say so on paper.  If they have, I can’t find their testimonial.

So, I finally decided to figure this mania out for myself.  I went to Barnes and Noble that summer in ’05 armed with a gift card, and bought books one through four.  I devoured them over three weeks, and the ending to the first story finally made since.  By the time I bought and read book five soon after, I felt I should at least confess that I was a Christian, and that I enjoyed Harry Potter.  Despite by best efforts, I have yet to turn either of my cats into wine goblets. 

2) What was your first reaction (physical and/or mental) when you read the scene in which Snape killed Dumbledore?
I had to read the page twice.  Then I got up, walked the hall a few times.  I sat back down and read the rest of the novel in a weird state of…well, shock.  I wasn’t very familiar with narrative misdirection then, but Rowling had successfully landed her sucker punch.  I never saw it coming. 

3) How/when will you read Deathly Hallows?
According to Amazon.com, the book is supposed to arrive on the day it’s released.  UPS has shown up at my house as late as eight in the evening to deliver packages, so I’ll just have to see.  But as soon as I get it, every moment I can spare will be spent drinking it in. 

Written by taj

May 31, 2007 at 2:44 pm

A Post 5/11 World…

with one comment

My little boy became two weeks old yesterday.  I’m told that the heart’s need to create landmarks begins to lessen as time passes, but I hope it doesn’t lessen too much. 

The days prior to 5/11/07 seem ancient to me right now.  I’m slowly starting to key back in to the world at large.  I actually had to be reminded that Star Wars turned 30 yesterday. 

Mother and baby are doing great.  We have every indication that we have a strong, healthy little boy on our hands.  I am not so adept at thinking of his future days just yet.  When I do I find I am too overwhelmed.  So we take it day by day, for now. 

I hope to return to writing again soon.  For now, however, the little one requires great attention.  I have driven through these last two weeks on the seat of my pants, really, and I am still unsure what form all of this—going back to work, writing, and that little part about being a father and all that—will take in the coming weeks and months. 

Will return shortly.  Promise. 

Written by taj

May 26, 2007 at 6:22 pm

5/11/07 @0448

with 4 comments

Casey Austin Johnson breathed his first and let out a big cry early yesterday morning.

Mother and baby are doing great–in fact, baby has just been wheeled away for his first hearing test.

Thanks for all of your prayers.  Be back soon!

Written by taj

May 12, 2007 at 10:08 am

Posted in Baby News

When time draws out like a blade

with one comment

We have reached the stage where time crawls while we wait for labor to strike.  After three ultrasounds, we’ve received three due dates, and the first is today. 

When I pick up my wife from work I always ask two questions: “How was your day?” and, “Have you had any contractions?”  Her reply generally consists of the words fine, and no.  So here we are.  Waiting for the birth to commence. 

I spoke with a nurse when we toured the hospital, and she confirmed for us that, yes, the birth center is usually packed on a full moon.  Well, the last full moon came and went without a pinch or an ache from my wife.  And so we wait some more.  

I’m surprised no one ever recorded a country song about this. 

People ask me at least four times a week if I am excited.  I tell them the truth—I go back and forth between excited and terrified.  Right now, I am excited.  I feel confident and poised, and ready to rock and roll.  But the clock is ticking…

Written by taj

May 10, 2007 at 1:51 pm

Posted in Baby News

Introducing “Smash Cuts”

with 3 comments

I want to try and get into writing movie reviews again.  They’re only going to run three or four paragraphs for now—I have a hard time getting a review to read the way I want it to read, so I am starting small. 

On a whim, I decided I needed a way to diversify the posts, and since “Short Cuts” was already taken, “Smash Cuts”—which refers to a marker used in screenplays to dictate an abrupt transition—stepped in to fill the need.  As near as I can tell after a quick run through Google, no one’s copyrighted the name for a similar purpose.  Maybe I’ll sell a column. 

Really, it’s something to satisfy the need to write and improve on the craft and be a geek at the same time.  I’ll have one posted shortly.  Feel free to provide feedback.   

Written by taj

May 9, 2007 at 4:15 pm

At Last…Proof

with 3 comments

It IS Bush’s fault!

HT: CalvinDude

PS: I will to return with more substantial stuff soon.  Promise. 

Written by taj

May 2, 2007 at 4:51 pm

Posted in Politics