spring break 2013

In my careless free fall into annoying amateur iPhone photography, I’ve stumbled across a new app called Plastica. It attempts to replicate the photographs of plastic cameras, something I know nothing about. Here are some pictures from the last couple of days:

my living room



ice on the beach of South Haven



me, on the beach of South Haven


Colorado, as seen from a plane


A few years ago I opened the blind on a window in my house. I looked out and, now and then, someone would look in. Before lunch the sun would shine through the window, warming a patch of the cold linoleum floor. Like a dog I sat basking in the light. It was good.

I opened the blinds on the windows in other rooms in my house, leaving each room a porthole to the sun. Through them I saw the birds in the trees and through them the neighbors could see me seeing them and we would wave as if our eyes happened to meet by chance. Then we would return to our work and play. It was good.

I went through my house and opened the blinds on all of the windows in every room—tore them open. Beams of light shot into my house, Swiss-cheesing it like bullets riddling their paper target or laser motion detectors in a Saturday morning cartoon museum. Downy tufts of grass sprouted in the kitchen where the sunlight struck the floor, then in my bedroom, then in the living room, the vacant guestroom. It was good. Continue reading

search and rescue; call and response

The college search is hard for many people.  Some lucky duckers know what they want to do and where they want to do it, only apply to that place, get accepted and attend.  Others, like myself, have a vague sense of what they’d like to study and maybe a lead on a school they could be interested in.  I thought that I’d like to study one of the liberal arts and I applied to eleven or twelve schools.  Halfway through application season (January or so), I switched my intended major to music.

Some of my Christian friends have a strong sense of God’s will for their lives.  Whether they use the phrase or not, you can tell they know—or at least think they know—which school God wants them to attend, what career God has prepared for them, etc.  “God has a plan for you, and that is so beautiful and exciting!”  This sort of language, although well-intended and true, confused me during my college search, and still does.  The idea of ‘God’s plan’ wasn’t very comforting either, because I thought that it meant I had a one in twelve chance at choosing the Right School, and a similar chance at choosing the Right Major.  There was a lot at stake and I didn’t want to screw my life up.

All right, close your eyes.  Raise your hand if you think that sounds ridiculous and a little melodramatic.  I see many hands in the air, belonging to agnostics, atheists, and believers alike.  Oops, I raised my hand, too.  Ok, hands down, hands down.

I still don’t understand the concept of God’s will, although I’ve learned that it involves a lot more freedom than I had previously thought.  But I couldn’t see that in my senior year of high school.  The fear that I could permanently remove myself from the Right Trajectory of Life added to my depression and anxiety, and was the cause of a couple panic attacks.  I didn’t speak to anyone about this because I felt alone.  Who would listen? Continue reading