Sunday, October 28, 2007

More from Loblaws

Regular readers of this blog will know that I'm not a huge fan of Loblaws. They have a lot going for them, but they seem to make a lot of mistakes around their supply chain. Unfortunately they've had years to work on this problem and still manage to shoot themselves in the foot on a regular basis. Karen was looking for English Crumpets the other day, but was told "the factory burned down." Well, that's original. And it's probably true. But to say that you don't have product to sell because one supplier is having problems is rather weak. It's a good thing their supplier of meat didn't lose a factory, because I guess they wouldn't have any meat to sell until a new factory gets built.

As an aside, they have signs all over the place talking about their "Real Price Cuts" and how more than 1000 products have had their prices cut. I was looking at some ice cream in one of their freezers and it had the "Real Price Cuts" sign on it, saying that the old price was $6.49 but the newly cut price is now $6.48. I don't know, but this sounds like one of the students working for them was playing a joke. I was going to ask the Manager about it, but I don't think he likes me after our last conversation.

Saturday, October 27, 2007


Things are a bit busy because I'm preparing for a couple of sermons in November. One is a continuation on my series on theology, specifically the second part of Christology.

The second is part of a series my church is doing on Galatians, and I have been assigned 2:1-10. Does Galatians 2:1-10 describe the events of Acts 11 or Acts 15?

Tuesday, October 23, 2007

And the winner...

... of the "Sense and Sensibility" DVD, chosen by my 9 year old son from the three scraps of paper in an envelope is Jim (a.k.a Riley's Owner). Jim, if you'll send me your snail mail address I'll get this in the mail for you. You can send it to me at "s ab i gail @" removing all the spaces.

Sunday, October 21, 2007


We had a nice visit from my parents. They dropped off a bedroom suite for Bethany, took the kids out and generally helped out. It was great to see them again, even if I saw them a couple of weeks ago.

I took Bethany and Joel out to see a hockey game last night. They've both gotten interested in hockey, so I surprised them with tickets to see the Ottawa Senators play the Florida Panthers. It was a good game, with the Senators winning 4-1. However I wonder why it is that every time I go near ScotiaBank Place, I am required to walk a gauntlet of people hawking tickets. This time, while I was inside the building standing in line at the box office, someone started walking up and down the line offering to sell me tickets. What a pain.

Today there were 4 baptisms at church. I love watching baptisms. And one of the young couple brought their newborn baby to church. I love seeing babies.

Tuesday, October 16, 2007

Nobel Prize

To further my drive to secure a Nobel Peace Prize for Ang Lee (being that works of fiction now qualify), I am offering a new, still wrapped DVD of "Sense and Sensibility" to one of the commenter's on my blog. Anyone leaving a comment against this specific blog entry will be automatically entered to win. Next Monday I will have one of my children randomly select a name and I'll post the name of the winner. The DVD will be sent by mail to the winner upon me receiving the postal address. Note that this is only open to residents of North America and is void where prohibited by law.

Monday, October 15, 2007

Daddy and Joel's Excellent Adventure

I was speaking in Kingston yesterday, and had the privilege of bringing Joel along with me. I was up at 5:30am (well, 4:45 because Hannah woke me and I never got back to sleep, but 5:30 was when I got out of bed), woke Joel at 6:00 and hit the road at 6:30. We stopped at the Tim Horton's on the 401 near Prescott. Though he'd already had breakfast already before we left, Joel still ate most of a breakfast sandwich. The young man has turned into a eating machine.

The sermons went well. I'm thankful that at the various places I preach, there never seems to be any resistance to theological ministry. But I was particularly happy to have people ask me about the points my sermons didn't cover (material that for one reason or another I left out). That showed that people were really paying attention and understanding the material.

We had a nice afternoon visiting with folks from Union Street Gospel Chapel, a great lunch and a nice nap. Joel watched more than his fair share of TV. One of the ladies invited me to help myself to some books she brought in. The books had belonged to her sister who passed away. She whispered to me, "My sister was in the Exclusives". Looking over the authors I said, "I can tell." I did help myself to a number of books by Bellett and Wolston.

We hit the Tim Hortons again on the way home, Joel fell asleep in the car, and we got home a little after 10:00pm. It was a busy and tiring day. Joel didn't do all the stuff Bethany did on her excellent adventure, but I was so happy to have him with me.

Friday, October 12, 2007

Ang Lee

I'm going to suggest Ang Lee for a Nobel Peace Prize. Evidently Directors of fiction films are now eligible.

As a side note, I don't agree with Al Gore winning the Nobel Peace Prize. It cheapens the value of the prize for other more worthy individuals, like previous winner Yasser Arafat.

Shawn's Law

The amount of time/effort spent trying to retrieve your email from the mail server is inversely proportional to the value of the email.

In layman's terms, if you have major problems trying to retrieve your email, need to contact technical support, reinstall your mail program and your operating system, it is almost certain the email waiting for you will be someone offering to sell you cheap drugs over the Internet.

Wednesday, October 10, 2007


Par for the course in Quebec. And remember, Charest is one of the sensible ones. Of course it makes sense, if religion is an irrelevant fiction and your highest goal is secularism.

Tuesday, October 09, 2007

The Weekend

The Thanksgiving Weekend was good, if somewhat painful. Karen and I went out on a romantic date to Ikea to buy a new bed. No, I'm not completely devoid of romance... we went to a good Italian restaurant first and had coffee at Starbucks after buying the bed. Unfortunately the coffee made me sick and Karen had to drive our babysitter home.

Putting the bed together was the painful part. Somehow I hurt my knee and I've been limping around ever since. We also ran the boxspring mattress over my big toe (removing several layers of skin) and I banged my finger with a hammer while attempting to make some dowels fit. Other than that it was a piece of cake. All three hours of it. The good news is the bed didn't collapse when I laid in it. And despite the pain, it's better than having a mattress on your floor for 3 years (to give a hypothetical example).

Monday I was feeling sick, as I have for the last week and a half. Mostly tired and a bit of an upset stomach. No, I'm not pregnant. Karen ended up taking the children out to Thanksgiving Dinner at her sister's house, and I stayed home and tried not to think about my stomach, or my knee, or my finger or my toe. Eventually I felt well enough to microwave a TV dinner. The good news is I'm about half way done reading Eusebius. Not sure it's a good idea to read about early Christian martyrs when you're having a bad day, but I'm getting through it. As an aside, did you know that the first reference to a Christian worker receiving a salary was for one of the Marcionites? Haven't heard of the Marcionites? Shame on you! Marcion started out by creating his own version of the Bible, and... well, you can guess the rest.

Anyway, that was my weekend.

Monday, October 01, 2007


I finished F.F. Bruce's "New Testament History". So now do I finish C.S. Lewis' "God in the Dock" or do I read Eusebius' "Ecclesiastical History"? Decisions, decisions. Lewis is not the sort you zip through. I suspect Eusebius would be an easier read (being that I'm reading it in translation).

Daddy and Bethany's Excellent Adventure

Last Friday Bethany and I took a trip to Sudbury. There were a number of reasons why we made the trip. First, I was giving a seminar on Saturday and speaking at a church in Sudbury on the Sunday morning. The second reason was because my parents are selling their house, and I wanted to bring a bunch of stuff back to Ottawa with me. But the third reason was so that one of my children and I could have a really good time together. I've been to Kingston with Bethany before, so I offered Joel a chance to go with me. But I suspect the 6 hour car ride dissuaded him. In the end Bethany agreed to go. I only took one of the children because I wanted plenty of room to bring stuff back with me.

It was the typical long car ride, with a ton of construction thrown in for good measure. But I had some music by Michael Card, Charlotte Church and Paul Potts to keep me company, and Bethany had a number of DVD's for the portable DVD player. We stopped for an early lunch at Logos Land, in the Noah's Ark shaped restaurant. And we got in some good discussion time during the trip.

We arrived on Friday in time for supper. Dad barbecued some nice Rib Steaks, and Mom did mashed potatoes, carrots and broccoli, with homemade apple pie and ice cream for dessert. And I do mean homemade; the apples were from my Dad's apple tree in the backyard.

On Saturday, my Dad was kind enough to take the van into the garage for me, since it started maying a noise while we were on the road. Turns out it needed a break job. After taking it into the garage, Dad took Bethany to Science North for most of the day. They went to the 4D movie, “Wings Over the North” which featured Rusty Blakey, a well known bush pilot who was once neighbours with my Dad's family.While they were learning about science and Northern Ontario, I was at the seminar. We started with breakfast, which was a John Johnston Special. Yum! About a dozen men came out for the seminar, where I talked about how to prepare and deliver a sermon. Each of the attendees got a booklet with my PowerPoint slides. For supper it was lasagna with a baked cake (hard to describe, but yummy).

On Sunday morning I continued my series on basic theology, discussing why I believe the Bible to be the Special Revelation God has sent. I thought it was very well received, and it is nice to see Sudbury Bible Fellowship strong and healthy. I slipped home for a quick lunch, of cold chicken, barbecued back bacon, ham, rolls, garden salad, potato salad and macaroni salad. One of the many nice events of the weekend was my Aunt Betty and Uncle Clayton coming for lunch. It was a whirlwind tour, and I didn't know if I'd get a chance to see them. Aunt Betty brought an amazing strawberry cake!

Other events included Bethany picking apples from Dad's tree and making apple crisp. And I spent a lot of time going through the house deciding what I wanted to bring back with me. We brought a number of special mementos with us. The trip back was uneventful, with Bethany sleeping for 2 hours, and a quick 10 minute supper at Subway in Deep River. And now we're back. I was (and am) somewhat emotional about my parents selling the old house but it's the best thing to do and I'm very grateful for a chance to visit home one last time.