Archive | March 2007

2008 Subaru Impreza WRX

Edmunds.com Inside Line‘s story on the 2008 Subaru Impreza WRX


For those of you who can hear music on this page, you’re listening to Geoff Moore’s rendition of “When I Get Where I’m Going” from his new album Speak to Me (Rocketown Records) that comes out this Tuesday!


From http://christian-music-interviews.suite101.com/article.cfm/geoff_moore

Geoff Moore

Interview

© Kevan Breitinger

Geoff Moore Interview - Photo Credit: Speak to Me

Geoff Moore’s legacy of 22 years of music ministry, and 16 albums, including the recent “Speak to Me,” gives his thoughts a certain legitimacy we were eager to hear.

Click here to read the full Suite review of Geoff Moore’s “Speak To Me.”

Suite: Geoff, your sense of calling comes across so prominently in your music. How essential is that to a Christian artist?

Geoff: Being a Christian artist is my job. Everybody’s job can be a ministry, but not everybody’s job is in full-time ministry. Because I feel like mine is, my calling is central to all I do in my music life. I have never believed that being a Christian who is a musician makes you a Christian artist. I have many friends and co-workers who are followers of Jesus that make a living in mainstream music. But, for me, I make Gospel music. Every song I write, sing or record in some way is about the “Good News.” I guess the older I get, the more I value every moment I have to make Jesus known and not miss a moment of what He has for me.

Suite: I love the mix of guest artists, writers, and covers on “Speak to Me.” How deliberate are your choices in deciding those things?

Geoff: A few of the choices are deliberate but most of them come, like so many great things in life, unexpectedly. I believe in artistic collaboration. For me, collaborating—whether it’s in songwriting, performing or producing—seems to almost always be more fun and more productive. In the case of Speak to Me, I write with a lot of different writers, but we never know which songs will end up on the album until the end. I am committed to recording songs that I love, whether I wrote them or not. So, in the case of the cover songs, I loved them and wanted to sing them. It was pretty much that simple. Christy Nockel’s involvement came about through our common connection with Rocketown, where Watermark recorded. Christy and Nathan sometimes lead worship at our church, and I am a long time fan. Could anyone have done a better job on “When I Get Where I’m Going”? I don’t think so.

I have also loved Kendall Payne’s music but had never met her. Dwayne Larring, who produced half of Speak to Me, goes to church with and lives near Kendall in Los Angeles. I heard a recording of a Dutch worship leader singing “He Knows My Name” on a Compassion International trip to Bolivia. He had a girl singing a duet with him, and I just loved the way they did it. Dwayne mentioned that Kendall lived right near the studio and was willing and happy to sing with me. And just like that, it happened. You can’t plan the coolest things.

Suite: What would you love to see the new album accomplish?

Geoff: I would love for the music to become a part of people’s lives. Sort of a soundtrack to their journey. I am so happy and moved when I hear people say that my songs have been a part of some special moment. I hope these new songs can do the same thing. And then remind them, and me, that God is interested and involved and loving us exactly as we are.

Suite: Do you have any secrets/suggestions for longevity in the Christian music field?

Geoff: No Doz have served me well!! Seriously, I think authenticity and honesty are the things that I’ve tried to stick to. It’s important to me to try and be myself. I’ve found that when I’m myself and write songs from a place of honesty, people seem to connect with them. I have always felt that what I get to do is a real gift and privilege. I still feel that way, I really do. Throw in a good dose of contentment and kindness, and I think you have a recipe for a long-term career.

Suite: Thanks for digging deep for our readers, Geoff, and for the great sounds. In appreciation, here’s an easy lob: your favorite moment of the past week?

Geoff: My favorite moment? Tonight I put Anna to bed, my 6-year-old Chinese daughter, and before she went to sleep we sang a duet of “He Knows My Name.” It will never sound any sweeter.

Thank you all for your prayers!  By God’s grace, my health seems to be improving!


The new 2008 Subaru Impreza WRX hatchback? (Source: May 2007 issue of Motor Trend rest in peace, Robert E. Peterson)

It looks familiar, doesn’t it, Ed (Fung)?  I really like it!  Then again, I’m a fan of the Mazda3 as well!


Quick rant:

Who else thinks these things should be banned from our freeways and highways?

Maybe that’s a little too extreme.  Perhaps they can use them only when freeways and highways are uncongested.  I think they should be required to have covers on top and “diapers” on the bottom.  Who wants to help me start a bill (and draw the ire of the construction industry)?  Hehehe


Last but certainly not least, I would like to remember the life and faith of Mrs. Grace Ogawa.  Grace was formerly a full-time staff member of UCLA’s Asian American Christian Fellowship.  Because of lung cancer, she went home to be with the Lord early Saturday morning.  Although, I was not touched by her personally much like some of my UCLA AACF counterparts were, the few interactions I had with her left me thinking she was a woman of God full of grace, humility, and a heart for other people.  She is survived by her husband Curt and their 4 year-old daughter Jordan.

So if the Son makes you free, you will be free indeed. -John 8:36 (New American Standard Bible)  She is free indeed!

Free
Isaiah 42:5-7; Jn. 8:31-36; Rom. 8:38-39

The sun was beating down inside the walls of stone and razor wire
As we made our way across the prison yard
I felt my heart begin to race as we drew nearer to the place
Where they say that death is waiting in the dark
The slamming doors of iron echoed through the halls
Where despair holds life within its cruel claws
But then I met a man whose face seemed so strangely out of place
A blinding light of hope was shining in his eyes
And with repentance in his voice he told me of his tragic choice
That led him to this place where he must pay the price
But then his voice grew strong as he began to tell
About the one he said had rescued him from Hell, he said

I’m free, yeah, oh, I have been forgiven
God’s love has taken off my chains, and given me these wings
And I am free, yeah, yeah and the freedom I’ve been given
Is something that not even death can take away from me
Because I’m free
Jesus set me free

We said a prayer and said good-bye, and tears began to fill my eyes
As I stepped back out into the blinding sun
And even as I drove away I found that I could not escape
The way he spoke of what the grace of God had done
I thought about how sin had sentenced us to die
And how God gave His only Son so you and I could say

I’m free, yeah, oh, I have been forgiven
God’s love has taken off my chains, and given me these wings
And I am free, yeah, yeah and the freedom I’ve been given
Is something that not even death can take away from me
Because I’m free
Jesus set me free

And if the Son has set you free
Oh if the Son has set you free
Than you are free indeed, oh, you are really free
If the Son has set you free
Oh if the Son has set you free
Than you are free, really, really free, oh

We’re free, yeah, oh we have been forgiven
God’s grace has broken every chain, and given us these wings
And we’re free, yeah, and the freedom we’ve been given
Is something that not even death can take from you and me
Because we’re free, yeah and the freedom I’ve been given
Is something that not even death can take away from me
Because we’re free
We are free, we are free
The Son has set us free
If the Son has set you
You are free indeed

written by Steven Curtis Chapman
©1996 Sparrow Song/Peach Hill Songs (BMI) (admin. by EMI Christian Music Publishing)

Sick again.  Definitely the worst thing about working at Edmunds and its open-air environment!  Your prayers to our great God would be appreciated!

On April 5, 2007, a legend will be reborn – the 2008 Subaru Impreza
http://www.subaru.com/legend

Steven Curtis Chapman performing “God Is God” LIVE

Something I forgot to mention in last night’s entry was that I’m also thankful to God that the current job God provided me is even better than the first one I interviewed for and didn’t get at Edmunds.com!  The reason it’s “better” is I frequently e-mail the executives and a lot of other high up people within the organization.  With the other position, I probably would’ve been more of a “nobody.”  I’m guessing a lot of the people I’m e-mailing still don’t know who I am though, which is fine with me.  The other position would’ve been mostly data entry whereas I get to do a decent amount of reporting and analysis in my current position.  (God the) Father truly knows best!

Productivity will reach an all-time low in my office! j/k!

We got a newer version of the game above, a Lord of the Rings pinball machine, and a couple stand-up arcade games (Neo Geo on one (four games…the only one I’ve really played is Bust-A-Move) and Atari games on the other (a bunch like Pac-Man, Galaga, Missile Command, Dig Dug, Space Invaders, and some Donkey Kong games)) installed a few weeks ago.  They are all set to free play of course!  I played for foosball for about an hour and a half tonight after I was done with work!

I really wish we could get F355 Challenge for our game room!



Time for some rants and other random things…

Don’t you hate it when people toss their cigarette butts out of their automobiles?!  I usually flash my high beams at these people when I’m behind them.  Although I’m very far from calling myself an environmentalist (I’m not nuts about hybrids and alternative energy source vehicles because just about all of them have a performance trade-off), I can’t stand the fact that they think our roads are their trash can.

People who don’t use their turn signals and whose failure to do so result in me having to react behind the wheel in an abnormal way–very uncool.

Gas station prices…
Have you ever seen someone physically change the price on a gas station sign?  In my 25-plus years of life on God’s earth, I’ve never seen someone do it.

“I got bad gas!” – This is what I thought when I started to hear some pinging/knocking/detonation from my car’s engine in late January.  Even though I was using only 91 octane gasoline, I finally heard some regular pinging coming from the car’s engine.  In April 2005, I got a COBB AccessPort to flash the car’s ECU (electronics control unit) with a more powerful engine map that also addressed the fact that the factory programmed the ECU with a way too rich fuel mixture when transitioning from closed loop to open loop operation (bad because it could cause pinging which is bad for the engine).  I had never heard any real pinging until late January.  I try to only use Top Tier gasolines (www.toptiergas.com), namely Shell and Chevron.  It seems both the Shell and Chevron gas stations on the corner of Golden Springs and Brea Canyon in Diamond Bar have tanker trucks that supply them with gasoline that don’t even have the brand names on them.

All gasolines are not the same.  That is a misconception some or many of you may have.  The gasoline itself is the same but each oil company adds different additives to the gasoline their stations sell (at least that’s what they supposedly do).  I thought maybe I got bad gas at the Shell station and starting using Chevron only again. I also filled up with 76/ConocoPhillips gasoline during that time with the same result.  I switched the engine map to a more conservative one for California/Arizona/Nevada gasoline which has helped a lot for this issue.  It is believed that gasoline sold during the winter season is usually lower quality than gasoline retailed at other times of the year.  We’ll see as I keep monitoring and listening to the engine to see how this all pans out.

People say the “darndest” things..
This actually happened when I went to the 76 gas station mentioned above.  I’m fueling the car when the guy who parked behind me to fuel his white 1992 Lexus LS400 (I figured the year off his license plate number which was 2Z…our family’s 1991 Chevy van was first registered in February 1992 and has a plate of 2Z…) says, “Is that USC for junior college?” referring to my license plate.  I told him it stood for, “USC for Jesus Christ.”  I hope he felt like a tool after that.  Then, he goes on to tell me that he was a UCLA graduate.  I thought, “Good for you.  So what?”  He must’ve be a baller since he has a 1992 Lexus LS400.  It’s not a big deal I guess.  Anyway, I apologize if this rubs any Bruin readers of this entry the wrong way.  This is not what I think of all of you.  This is just what I thought about that one particular individual based off one single experience.


Some of you in Xanga-land may wonder why I like to wear caps a lot.

Here’s why:

  • I don’t like to do my hair
  • I like to sag the bill of the cap low so I can see what’s going on, but others can’t necessarily see that I’m looking or know what’s going on around me


Now for some entertainment!

Christian vs. Christ Follower videos (parody of Mac vs. PC commercials) – they’ve been out for a few months but I just saw them for the first time tonight…I don’t totally agree with everything said, but these are just for fun!  These videos were made by Community Christian Church (www.communitychurch.org).

Part 1

Part 2

Part 3

Part 4

“Subaru” is in the Bible!

Well, kind of…

Amos 5:8 (New American Standard Bible)

    8 He who made the Pleiades and Orion
         And changes deep darkness into morning,
         Who also darkens day into night,
         Who calls for the waters of the sea
         And pours them out on the surface of the earth,
         The LORD is His name.

Here’s how Subaru relates to this.


From http://www.subaru-global.com/origin_name.html:

The first president of Fuji Heavy Industries Ltd. (FHI), Kenji Kita, had some definite opinions on the subject of automobiles. “If you’re going to build a car, build a full-fledged car.” “Japanese cars should have Japanese names.” Mr. Kita was ardent about producing passenger cars and was the most passionate of all about the 1954 prototype of the Company’s first passenger car, the P-1.

Mr. Kita canvassed the Company for suggestions about naming the P-1, but none of the proposals were appealing. In the end, Mr. Kita gave the car a beautiful Japanese name that he had been quietly cherishing in his heart — Subaru.

Subaru is the name of a star cluster in the Taurus constellation. Six of its stars are visible to the naked eye, but about 250 bluish stars can be seen if one uses a telescope.

In the West, the cluster is called Pleiades, in China, Mao, and in Japan, Subaru (“to govern” or “gather together”). In Japan, it also goes by the name Mutsuraboshi (“Six Stars”), under which title it appears frequently in very old Japanese documents such as Kojiki and Manyosyu and literature such as Makura-no-soshi. Clearly, this is one of the clusters much loved by the Japanese from ancient times. Interestingly enough, FHI was created by the merger of six companies, so you can see what a truly evocative name Subaru is.


Smoke on the Water – 2008 Dodge Avenger

I had a huge smile on my face the first time I saw and heard this commercial set to a Deep Purple classic (edit: updated thanks to Brentilicious)! 


Edmunds.com Inside Line‘s First Drive of the 2008 Dodge Avenger – http://www.edmunds.com/insideline/do/Drives/FirstDrives/articleId=49545


Work is going really well!  I totally praise God for the job He’s given me!  The time just flies right by!  I was supposed to have my 90-day review last week, but because my whole group is pretty much always busy, I haven’t had it with my manager yet.  I joked with my manager today over AIM that it’s cool if we don’t get to my review right away as long as I get to keep working at Edmunds.  He basically replied, “Oh ya…for sure!”  He’s says we’re (a guy (fellow lefty too) started the week after me also as an Associate Business Analyst) doing a great job!

I’ve made friends with a good number of the Editorial staff which has been the coolest thing about working at Edmunds!  Some of the people I’ve met used to write for Car & Driver, Automobile Magazine, Motor Trend, Sport Compact Car, Super Street Magazine, and more.  It’s really cool being able to see that the people who wrote articles on Inside Line before I got my job at Edmunds are pretty much normal people.  The coolest thing is I spoke to the Editor-in-Chief of Inside Line a few Fridays ago and now I am scheduled to go with some Inside Line people later this month to observe them carry out some testing!!!


Most of my church’s (First Chinese Baptist Church, Walnut – www.fcbcwalnut.org (gotta get the shameless plug in)) pastoral staff will be attending The Shepherd’s Conference this week at Grace Community Church (www.gracechurch.org).  Please keep them in prayer!


Romans 11:33-36 (NASB – link is for the whole chapter of Romans 11 on BibleGateway.com) was covered tonight in Bible Study Fellowship.  This passage always reminds me of the song “God Is God” on Steven Curtis Chapman’s Declaration album (©2001 Sparrow Records).

 33 Oh, the depth of the riches both of the wisdom and knowledge of God! How unsearchable are His judgments and unfathomable His ways!

 34 For WHO HAS KNOWN THE MIND OF THE LORD, OR WHO BECAME HIS COUNSELOR?

 35 Or WHO HAS FIRST GIVEN TO HIM THAT IT MIGHT BE PAID BACK TO HIM AGAIN?

 36 For from Him and through Him and to Him are all things. To Him be the glory forever. Amen.

From www.hughchou.org/ccm

God Is God
Written by Steven Curtis Chapman
From the recording: Declaration, Track #5.

Rom. 11: 33-36; Psalm 8:3-4; 95:3-6; 103:13-22

And the pain falls like a curtain
On the things I once called certain
And I have to say the words I fear the most
I just don’t know

And the questions without answers
Come and paralyze the dancer
So I stand here on the stage afraid to move
Afraid to fall, oh, but fall I must
On this truth that my life has been formed from the dust

God is God and I am not
I can only see a part of the picture He’s painting
God is God and I am man
So I’ll never understand it all
For only God is God

And the sky begins to thunder
And I’m filled with awe and wonder
‘Til the only burning question that remains
Is who am I

Can I form a single mountain
Take the stars in hand and count them
Can I even take a breath without God giving it to me
He is first and last before all that has been
Beyond all that will pass

Oh, how great are the riches of His wisdom and knowledge
How unsearchable
For to Him and through Him and from Him are all things

So let us worship before the throne
Of the One who is worthy of worship alone

©2001 Sparrow Song / Peach Hill Songs / BMI / Admin. by EMI Christian Music Publishing