Author: Michael Brown

Have You Been Hijacked?

Do you find yourself drumming your fingers as your computer ever so sloooowly grinds and cranks along like a freshly-salted slug on a sunny, Sunday afternoon? When you sit down for an online session, do you hear menacing noises rising forth from the bowels of your desktop? When you have friends over and one of them asks to look up something on the internet, does your web browser, which lately has had a mind of its own, take them, totally unprompted, to… Read the rest

A Most Meticulous Use of Space

“For since the creation of the world God’s invisible qualities—his eternal power and divine nature—have been clearly seen, being understood from what has been made, so that men are without excuse.” Romans 1:20

For many years, physicists and astonomers have speculated that the universe experienced a cataclysmic birth and expanded very rapidly in the first moments of its existence. New data supporting the long held notions of a “Big Bang” and “Inflation Theory” has recently emerged from NASA’s Wilkinson Microwave Anisotropy Probe (WMAP). Using words such as “stunning,” “spectacular” and “amazing,” astrophysicists have been waxing eloquently about these latest findings which demonstrate that the universe grew from the size of a marble to billions of light years across within a trillionth of a second.… Read the rest

That Other George

As Duke dismantled GW in the second round of the NCAA tournament on Saturday, it really didn’t take a rocket scientist (and believe me, in Huntsville those guys and gals are a dime a dozen) to figure out that the initials stood for that “Famous George” who helped found our nation and chopped down the cherry tree (although his descendents still insist he was framed).

However, that “Other George,” was a little more difficult to place. George Mason is one of those guys who you know did something that you’re supposed to remember, but you just can’t for the life of you recall what it was.… Read the rest

What’s in My Fridge?

That question came to mind recently as I read Bill Gnade’s piercing Lenten reflection “A Eucharistic Chore, Trash Bags in Hand.”

Bill’s metaphorical montage serves to put mundane matters such as March Madness in their proper place–far behind getting right with God and cleaning out the spoilage and rot tucked away in the recesses of my soul.

Like Bill, I need to check the mental fridge and do a little spring cleaning. Unlike Bill, I’m afraid I may lack the courage to open the door and look inside.

Read the rest

Top of the Morning to Ye!

Happy St. Patrick’s Day and top of the morning to all of ye, whether ye bleed green or not. I’ve always wanted to be more Irish than what I am since things Celtic are viewed by many to be quirky, cool and hip. I have a pretty boring Anglo surname that doesn’t evoke too many images of ethnicity. But on this day I’m thankful for the McGuire and Pasley blood which runs through my veins since that lends me license to lay claim to an Irish heritage and, like a wee leprechaun, to enjoy the day’s mischievous festivities along with the O’Connors, O’Sullivans and O’Rourkes.… Read the rest

A Traitor In Our Midst

The clock is ticking and you have until 11:00AM CST to enter the “Ocular Fusion Gang” pool at USA Today’s March Mania. The details on how to enter can be found here. So far, there’s only me, Number One and Number Three sons, and some person named “House of Orange.” I only know two people in my circle who would use such a moniker–Jason the Youth Minister and Jason the GynGuy, my brother-in-law. I’m not sure which one it is, but welcome nevertheless.

I’ve got news for you though. The Vols are overranked at a #2 seed, but I do have them making the Sweet 16 and falling to the team whose name we dare not speak (although I promise I will not be disappointed if the Big Orange prevails against the lads in those prissy, powder blue uniforms).… Read the rest

Manly Sweat

Bodily exercise profits a little, but godliness is profitable for all things. I Timothy 4:8

As you can see from the update at the bottom of my previous post, Lipscomb came up short in their game against UTEP in the first round of the NIT in El Paso last night. Nothing to be ashamed of there, though, as the Bisons still had a great year and their first invitation to a D-I post-season tournament. I’m wondering how many of those visiting teams who had to make long road trips to play in the first round won their games last night? Chances are, few if any.… Read the rest

Lips….comb. Oh, Now I Get It!

“They said we were going to play in our geographical area. I guess they meant the United States.”–Lipscomb University basketball coach Scott Sanderson

Heh, that’s pretty funny, just the kind of quippy soundbite you might expect from the son of colorful former Crimson Tide basketball coach “Wimp” Sanderson. Don’t be fooled, though. Although there won’t be much purple and gold in the crowd, Coach Sanderson is still happy to be taking his Bisons to their first post-season appearance as a Division I team--even if it does mean traveling over 1300 miles from Nashville to El Paso, Texas to take on the UTEP Miners tonight in the first round of the National Invitational Tournament (NIT).… Read the rest

Bracketology Babyyyy!

March Madness has descended upon us in all its wild and wooly fury. I’ve filled out my bracket–have you?

If not, then I invite you to join the Ocular Fusion gang pool at USA Today’s March Mania. Just register and then go to the “join an existing pool option.” The name of the group is “Ocular Fusion Gang” and the password is “2eyesarebetter.” You have until noon on March 16th to join and make and/or change your picks, and after that time you’ll be able to view everyone’s picks and progress as the tournament progresses. Those who are adept at picking the upsets in the first four rounds will be rewarded with bonus points and the winner will receive, well, nothing actually, except maybe bragging rights until next year.… Read the rest

Making it Right

Those of us who live in Alabama have cringed recently at the spate of church burnings in our state over the past month. We know full well that such news draws the wrong kind of attention to the Yellowhammer State and stirs up ugly memories from our racially-tinged past. Although authorities felt that the recent incidents were not racially-motivated hate crimes, their investigation focused mostly on rural residents who might have special knowledge of the backroads and backwoods where the church burnings took place. In other words, they were looking for stereotypical, Alabama “rednecks.”

However, yesterday’s arrest of three upper-middle class Birmingham area college students caught everyone–victims, authorities, family members, teachers and classmates–by surprise.… Read the rest

The Rightful Owner

I held my breath and walked through the door as a small bell tingled, announcing my arrival. I’d never set foot inside a pawn shop before, but the place fulfilled my stereotyped expectations. The walls were lined with shelves filled with discarded televisions, stereos, power tools, and once treasured trinkets, many pawned in last-ditch, desperate moves for quick cash.

The pawnbroker sat behind a glass display case lined with cheap handguns and gaudy costume jewelry. He was reading The Decatur Daily and nursing his morning coffee as the smoke from his cigarette curled lazily upward toward the tobacco stained ceiling.… Read the rest

They Don’t Call It Orange Beach For Nothing

We’ve been traveling to soccer tournaments for many years and if there’s one thing we’ve learned it’s that it has to be about more than wins and losses. Soccer is a beautiful but fickle mistress–one moment she’ll treat you like a king and in the next instant turn her back on you in the cruelest of ways. No, it’s got to be about fun, good food and the fellowship of a band of brothers who give their last full measure of effort on the field of battle, and come what may, stand or fall as one.

Of course, winning is also nice.… Read the rest

A Tough Lenten Task

There is a favorite thing that I’m supposed to give up for Lent, but blogging, soccer and trips to the beach are not on the list.

This weekend I have the tough assignment of carrying Number One son and one of his Grissom High Tiger teammates down to Orange Beach, Alabama for the Island Cup Soccer Tournament. I know, I know, it’s a sacrifice–very much in keeping with the spirit of Lent–but somebody’s got to do it.… Read the rest

My Favorite Barneyisms

There are many who are weighing in on the passing of Don Knotts, American funnyman whose iconic character of small-town deputy Barney Fife memorialized the earnest efforts of all downtrodden, skinny, bug-eyed low men on the totem pole everywhere who have ever longed to make a difference and be taken seriously.

And of course, many are waxing eloquently, much better than I ever could. Some good tributes can be found here and here. I thought my humble contribution to the cause would be to list some of my favorite “Barneyisms.” I just hope I can get through these without having to take a hit off my asthma inhaler:… Read the rest