Pardon our dust

Experimenting with a more minimalist look around here. I found a very minimalist WP theme I liked, but for some reason it didn’t allow block-quotes, which would make many of my posts downright confusing. This one-column theme is a compromise. Any thoughts?

UPDATE: Decided to go back to the old tried-and-true format.

We now return you to your (semi-) regularly scheduled blogging

Alright–I think four weeks off was probably enough. I’ve been getting the blogging itch lately, so why make a big fuss about it?

I’ve been enjoying Twitter, mostly as a kind of “mirco-blogging” platform to fire off quick links with a snippet of commentary (as opposed to mundane personal status updates more appropriate for Facebook). This is nice because it removes the pressure to compose an original post when all you really want to say is “Check this out!”

In fact, I’ll probably continue to use Twitter for that purpose (see the feed at the right), which will free up this space for somewhat longer, more substantive posts. And having that outlet probably means posting here will be less frequent than in the past. I only intend to post when there’s something I actually want to write about. Well, that and Friday Metal, of course.

Comments

The WP spam filter is usually pretty effective, but I’ve noticed a couple of legitimate comments being swept up in the dragnet recently. Looks like I’ll have to be a bit more vigilant. Thanks for your patience, esteemed readers!

Blogs of Christmas past

Since content will likely be light this coming week, I thought it would be an interesting exercise to offer up some representative posts from the previous four Decembers since I started blogging, as a kind of retrospective.

(Note: some of these originally appeared on my first blog, “Verbum Ipsum,” but have been imported to WP; consequently, there may be some broken links here and there.)

2004

“A Final Word…on the Great Sectarian Debate”

Part of an ongoing discussion with Jennifer of Scandal of Particularity about Christian social ethics

“What Makes a Christian?”
I propose a definition

“How to think about the Bible” and “Revelation, inspiration, and interpretation”
Thoughts on the authority and inspiration of the Bible

2005

“Critique of Pure (Jedi) Reason”

Excessively geeky analysis of the ethical philosophy of Star Wars

“Jesus – New and Improved”
The quest for new, heretofore “hidden” Jesuses as a way of avoiding the challenge of the Jesus we already know

“The Land Question”
A discussion of land reform by way of Tolstoy, Henry George, and Catholicism

2006

“Barack Obama: Where’s the Beef?”
Some skepticism about all the hype surrounding some Senator from Illinois

“Jesus the Jew and Christian Practice”
A post that led to me being called out by Jason Byassee of the Christian Century as a crypto-Marcionite (Follow up post here)

“Animal Cloning and ‘Granting things their space'”
Against animal cloning

“Stephen R.L. Clark’s ‘anarcho-conservatism'”
A discussion of Clark’s political philosophy

2007

“Alterna-nomics”
A review of Bill McKibben’s Deep Economy

“The Virgin Birth: Does it matter?”
“A further argument for the Virgin Birth,” and
“Faith and factuality”
A series on the Virgin Birth and the broader question of the relation between faith and history

“Paul Zahl’s Theology of Grace”
A review of Paul Zahl’s Grace in Practice

“The Case for McCain”
I maintain that McCain is the least bad of the Republican candidates

Housekeeping

I’ve added a few new links to the blogroll, and removed a couple of others (mostly in cases where there has been no activity for several months or more; I will happily re-link should they become active again). In these days of RSS feeds, I’m not entirely sure what the proper function of a blogroll is, but there you are.

Meta-blog

I’m still trying to figure out how to work regular blogging into my new, less flexible, schedule, as you may have noticed from the erratic posting. I’ve been shooting for posting a series of shorter posts once or twice during the week with maybe a longer essay on the weekends. I still haven’t quite figured out how to make that gel, but the situation has had the unintended effect of getting me to realize that I’m not really much interested in trying to keep up with the blog-world on a daily basis anymore. No doubt partly due to the election season, there’s just more commentary than any one person can possibly digest. So why would I want to contribute to the intellectual flotsam? Hopefully, then, the new schedule will make it easier for me to pull back and blog about bigger picture type stuff – not the latest campaign gaffe or outrage du jour. (There’ll still be heavy metal videos, though!)

I’m not dead yet

Sorry for the absence of posting over the last couple of weeks. Lest anyone thought I was stuck in the hooscow somewhere in the Netherlands, I did make it back safe and sound from Germany (which was awesome). Life has intervened in the meantime, though: I’ve started a new job, gone on retreat with people from church, and gotten sick all in the last two weeks, leaving little time for blogging.

I’m hoping to post a bit this weekend, so expect to see new content soon.

Blogroll update

Ever since I started using Google Reader I’ve been lazy about updating the blogroll here since one of its purposes was to help me keep track of the blogs I read regularly. But I’ve just done a little housecleaning and added a few links to blogs that I’ve added to my regular diet.

Blast from the past

I decided this clean break stuff is overrated so I’ve imported all the posts from the old blog over to here should anyone be interested in perusing them. If nothing else it’s more convenient to have it all in one place.

Christian peace bloggers

I’ve joined a “Christian Peace Bloggers” webring started by Michael Westmoreland-White of the Levellers blog. I think I properly fit into the catergory of “someone who believes war is a very last resort” and “that Christians are commanded to be working for peace so that such a resort doesn’t come.” In other words, I’m not a pacifist, but I definitely hold to a strict version of just war theory and think that war should emphatically not be regarded as a routine policy tool.

The idea behind the blog ring is for members to post something on war & peace about once a week, so hopefully some useful reflections will come out of that commitment.