Tuesday, July 25, 2006

How to Build Community

Turn off your TV
Leave your house
Know your neighbors
Greet people
Look up when you're walking
Sit on your stoop
Plant flowers
Use your library
Play together
Buy from local merchants
Share what you have
Help a lost dog
Take children to the park
Honor elders
Support neighborhood schools
Fix it even if you didn't break it
Have pot lucks
Garden together
Pick up litter
Read stories aloud
Dance in the street
Talk to the mail carrier
Listen to the birds
Put up a swing
Help carry something heavy
Barter for your goods
Start a tradition
Ask a question
Hire young people for odd jobs
Organize a block party
Bake extra and share
Ask for help when you need it
Open your shades
Sing together
Share your skills
Take back the night
Turn up the music
Turn down the music
Listen before you react to anger
Mediate a conflict
Seek to understand
Learn from new and uncomfortable angles
Know that no one is silent though not many are heard
Work to change this

~ Keith
text by members SWC community SWC(c)1997
Syracuse Cultural Workers

Friday, July 21, 2006

Holes In The Night Sky

I have posted a few times (see can o' marriage in the menu at the right) about my lovely & captivating wife Cathy.

She inspires and encourages me; moves and fulfills me. I am deeply and deleriously and happily in love with her!

Today I was struck by the lyrics to Holes In The Night Sky (stream or standard) from Andrew Smith's album Escape Velocity.
Holes in the Night Sky
Words and music by Andrew Smith
© 2004 Andrew Smith (socan)

Were we just wishing upon a star
Those nights of the soul when the future was dark
Were we just dreaming of places far
Beyond our grasp to shelter our hearts
It’s too late I’m falling for you

Didn’t we say that the stars
Were just holes in the night sky
Letting the light shine in from a better world
Didn’t we think that the stars
Were just holes in the night sky
Letting the light shine in
From a better world

Looking into Vincent’s starlight swirl
Like portals into the spirit world
We were just hoping that Someone heard
This broken-hearted boy and girl
Hold on I’m falling for you

Inside of us, inspite of us
There is a Star that shines
This light in us, inspite of us
Is keeping hope alive
As she and I journey together through wonderful seasons punctuated with difficult times, we love to walk at night and look at the stars. As we do I think of The One who flung all those stars in to their places; The One who knows and holds our past, present, and future -- The One who lives inside us, shining within us.

I am filled once again with faith, hope, and love, remembering the greatest of these is love, and love never fails.

I am glad the roots of the tree of life are strong and deep; its branches reaching high.

~ Keith

Thursday, July 20, 2006

Measuring Masculinity

In various previous posts including I Have What It Takes & Hello God, Is That You?, I wrote about my journey toward a real life of masculinity, including being awakened by God in the middle of the night and reading and journaling and stuff. Things culminated for me in late April, and in my post Who I Really Am I chronicled my passage into manhood.

The process continued. The getting up in the middle of the night has lessened quite a bit, at least for now (the last time, I think, was in early May when I wrote about being Sleepless on the Road to Oz. I journaled about the rite of passage being in my past, but how there is still work to be done -- how I was a "13 year-old man" with "27 years of catching up to do" -- a measure of maturation to do in order to bring me up to being a 40-yr old man on the inside.

At this point in the story, it would be good to give you a little background. In March of 2000 my doctor did some blood tests and I was diagnosed with a condition called hypogonadism. This meant that while I went through puberty like everyone else and am otherwise normal, my body did not make enough testosterone. My doctor prescribed some patches, but they fell off all the time. Since I am an RN, my doctor prescribed injectable testosterone.

So, since early to mid 2000, I have, every four weeks like clockwork, given myself a shot of testosterone. For the queasy of stomach, feel free to skip right to the next paragraph. The needles I have been using are around 1" long, and the injection goes deep into the muscle in my thigh. One month I do the right thigh, and the next month I do the left thigh. The testosterone is thick, like syrup -- so that it is absorbed slowly over the 4 weeks in between injections. That makes it difficult and sometimes a bit painful to inject. But my body needs the hormone, so I have become accustomed to it.

In late April, when I feel God took me through a rite-of-passage, I had just given myself my monthly testosterone injection. In late May I was out of town and had forgotten my injection supplies. Realizing this I decided to just give myself the injection when I got home. But then, when I got home, I changed my mind. Instead, I got a blood test (it had been awhile since my last testosterone level check anyway).

My results came back completely normal.

I eMailed my MD and she said she has not heard of any cases of hypogondism resolving spontaneously. I told her my theory that God had taken me through a rite-of-passage and that perhaps this would explain my normalized testosterone levels. She said this was as plausible a theory as any she could come up with. We planned to wait another two months before checking my blood again.

Monday 17th July was three full months with no testosterone supplementation. I had my blood test Monday morning.

Today my results came back: still completely normal.

No more needles. No more thick syrup-like injections into my thighs. No more wondering why my body doesn't make enough testosterone on its own. No more wondering if that makes me less of a man.

God has made me a man and as proof He has normalized my testosterone levels.

My heart is still in process, and I know I have a lot to grow into. But my heart is working. And I am a man. And I agree with God when He says this is very good.

~ cob

Tuesday, July 18, 2006

yes, it is a new template

I made the change this afternoon

~ cob

my blog's net worth

I saw this on Eric Nentrup's blog -- I just discovered it today. You should check him out -- he has some interesting things to say.

As to what this little measurement really means, I don't have any idea -- but it is kinda cool!

My blog is worth $9,032.64.
How much is your blog worth?

~ cob

Tuesday, July 11, 2006

Three Months From Now...

Today we had Chinese food for lunch at work.

My fortune said:
Remember three months from
this date. Good things are in
store for you.
I got this free counter -- so we'll see!