Archive for October, 2007

So the first week of tour has come and gone. It’s been great! I’ve been looking forward to touring with the Switchfoot guys for a while now. Let me tell you, those guys are the real deal. And yesterday I got to play poker with Brett from Ruth and boy were we… uh… ok, I was going to write “ruthless with him”. I admit it. I also got to play a show in my hometown already. I always really look forward to and dread those shows. It’s amazing to get to hang out with all my family and friends, but my attention is pulled every which way and the conversations are cursory. I always feel very stretched. But it’s good nonetheless.

I’ve already gotten to meet a lot of nice people on the road so far. I’ve meant to put up this picture (it was taken on our spring tour with Sherwood and Mae), but until now I hadn’t gotten around to it. Thanks Fabiola for sending it in!

I look forward to seeing more smiling faces :) See you soon!

Well dang it all to heck, I neglected to carve the pumpkin that Sarah bought for me into a jack-o-lantern. But to show you what I would have carved, check this out:

A few weeks ago I got a summons for Jury Duty. Dismay and loathing are two emotions that come to mind when I think back to how I felt upon opening that missive. Also I worried that it might interfere with my “work” schedule as I was slated to leave town a few days after my summons date. Then a week later Sarah received a summons for the same day. I then had to admit, well now that’s just funny.

So on Tuesday morning we showed up at the Denver Halls of Justice and Penal Servitude, official summons in hand, to await our juroristic fate. This is the process as I understand it:

Upon signing in Ms. Umbridge starts by prepping you with a bleak video outlining reasons you might not want to be there. That’s like giving a cannonball-wound patient a pamphlet on how he or she might feel on sustaining a serious cannonball wound (little nod to Brian Regan there). Then they play a little Shirley Jackson-esque round of mini-heart-attack with you as you wait, fingers and toes crossed, listening to them monotonously calling out numbers. You hope yours will not be called but know, undoubtedly, it will. As you bow your head and accept your fate you are ushered into a courtroom where a paternal but slightly dour judge attempts to garner your civic sympathies by yet again humorously outlining reasons you might not to be there. This does nothing to break the gloomy atmosphere of ill-will nor your slight apprehension that perhaps it is you who is on trial here. This fear grows as the lawyers begin their drawn-out volley of needling questions in their attempt to glean the essence of your psyche and the meaning from your very soul.

Here is where I depart from the fate of thirteen people in that room. I was not chosen. In fact I was never even asked any questions because the second “black spot” didn’t come my way. I got lucky, I guess.

Okay so I’m painting a pretty dark picture of this process, but in reality I was a little disappointed that I didn’t get to serve. I was fascinated the whole time I was there by the overwhelming “legality” of it all. I wanted to be picked and to exercise cool reason based on the credibility of the witnesses and the evidence brought forth. I became increasingly annoyed with a few potential jurors’ inability to understand the process and the fuzzy, illogical answers they responded with. I also had to roll my eyes at the guy who got out of serving with his puerile responses obviously crafted to be excused. But when it was all said and done it had only taken up my morning.

Sarah was not so lucky. She didn’t get picked to sit on the jury, but the selection process took up her morning and most of her afternoon. Since we had driven together that meant my afternoon as well. I took use of that time down to walk along 16th Street Mall listening to podcasts and watching crazies, of which Denver has a fair few. We met up a little while later, swapped war stories, then made our way to our merciful home and non-judging cats.

So last week Sarah and I went on a cruise with some of the guys in my band. We were very fortunate to be able to get away into the warmer climes of the Caribbean, and extremely fortunate not to get overrun by the pirates that lurk said waters.

This was the first time that either of us have gotten to go somewhere “tropical”. In fact my passport has only been stamped once, and that was for entering Canada for crying out loud. So after shoving off from the port in Miami we set our faces to the south and the adventures that awaited us.

After a long and somewhat uneventful day on the ship spent “laying out” and playing shuffleboard (Hoopes and I swept Schneck and Scott) we got to disembark onto Grand Cayman Island. Though we saw no actual offshore holding companies our morning was pleasantly spent in search of a private beach with Scott and Leah. We meandered for quite a while through residential areas until we came upon a hidden little gem of a beach. There were only a few other people that had found this area, so we felt quite fortunate. This is me on some of the sharp, sharp rock outcroppings that flanked our beach.


Next up was Isla Roatan off the coast of Honduras. We were tempted onto shore by wild tales of monkeys and chickens roaming freely. Sadly we saw no monkeys, but Sarah did get a few items of handmade jewelry. Now Roatan has been described as a “developing” area for tourist attractions. We definitely found that to be the case. In fact I was struck with how similar it felt to the slums of Merida, Mexico I had been to a few times on mission trips. Vendors hawking their wares, kids playing in garbage, roaming mutts rooting around in alleys; these were things I didn’t expect from a stop on a cruise vacation. Yet I am incredibly glad we stopped there. We fat, lazy, assuming Americans need to get out of our comfort zones once in a while to see the needs of less fortunate cultures. It makes me sick to hear some people here complaining of being poor: the “have-nots” in this country with their cars, roofs over their heads, and cable television. There are only the “haves” and the “have-more’s” here. After Sarah and I got back onto our luxurious boat we went to dinner where we couldn’t even eat half the food they put on our plate. The rest of the day was rather depressing.

At least there was a spectacular view:


The next day we stopped in Belize and went snorkeling for the first time. Whenever I see a commercial or pictures of people snorkeling it look so touristy and lame, but actually doing it was a lot more fun that I had imagined. My favorite was diving far down to see the coral and the tiny life down there, then coming up and blowing the water out of the snorkel with that funny sound. I spent half my time doing this and the other half dodging the local that was trying to sell me nose-candy.


I think it was around this day that we started playing Mafia. Mafia is kind of a card game you play with a bunch of people where the object is to root out an element… you kick off certain… you… oh just click the link and it will explain it better than I could. We played a variant where you have a Sheriff and a Nurse. I highly recommend this game to anyone who likes to sniff out a ruse :)

We were supposed to go to Costa Maya, Mexico the next day, but the threat of hurricanes was too much for our ship, ironically named the “Valor”. So we went to Cozumel, Mexico instead. This ended up being our favorite stop, and man oh man would Sarah just not stop talking about how she wants to move there. Our time in Cozumel was basically spent at the beach (or playa… hey!) with its crystal clear waters and colorful marine life. Lounging around on the beach was really how we wanted to spend this vacation (see the soapbox a few paragraphs above), and Cozumel offered this in spades. We might just have to go back there sometime.


By the next day, spent at sea, we were ready to go home. I think all we really did was play a little Mafia and watch the blinking red dot which was our ship move slowly back to Florida on the monitor. As we neared Miami we kept getting more and more excited about going back to autumn and the mountains. Vacation is always wonderful, but getting back home is even better.