Things I Like About Texas

Cami & I have been in Texas for an extended vacation. It started with a trip to San Antonio for the Southern Baptist Convention. After visiting Luckenbach, it continued with a trip to Abilene to hang out with her family. It will conclude next week with a trip back to Houston to see my family.

We have both enjoyed being back in the motherland. So, in honor of that, here’s a little Texas state nationalism…things I like about Texas:

  1. The Mexican food — 5 out of 6 meals in San Antonio were Mexican food (and I wanted the 6th to be as well, but that was vetoed).
  2. The family — It’s great hanging out with Cami’s family and so fun seeing the new addition to the Bethancourts, John Thomas.
  3. The friends — Catching up with old friends like Chris Rogers and Michael Loudermilk brings a smile to your face.
  4. The roads — Smooth roads with no potholes and freeways with a 70 mph speed limit.
  5. The barbecue — beef, it’s what’s for dinner. None of this pulled pork.

The list could go on and on, but these are some key things that come to mind. Viva La Texas.

5 Ways to Restore Email Sanity

Insanity

Are you ever frustrated when you open your email inbox? Do you find yourself constantly battling not just spam but also superfluous emails from people you know? Jason Fry of the Wall Street Journal offers 5 ways to restore email sanity:

  1. A Numbers Tax. You get to send an internal email to four people. That’s it. Any more than that, each recipient costs you a quarter….If that’s too radical, how about an indicator of how many people the email has been sent to? This would let me route anything with more than 25 recipients straight to my trash.
  2. Would You Say What You Typed? I stumbled across a blog entry from Lynn Gaertner-Johnston with a great test for whether you should be emailing something. She imagines an employee stopping by a manager’s office a dozen times a day asking for approvals and saying things like “I’m telling you this so I know you are aware of it in case there is trouble ahead.” Not many people actually do that in person, thank goodness. But lots of us do it via email, and most of those emails are pointless, dysfunctional or both.
  3. CC Reform. Once upon a time, being CC’d on something meant you needed to know it but didn’t need to respond. Now, it tends to mean you’re about to be bored senseless by a long string of messages you didn’t need to receive.
  4. The Are You Sure? Button. We need these added to at least two parts of the email experience. The first one is the BCC field — you haven’t lived until you BCC somebody for underhanded political reasons, only to have that person reply-all and immediately reveal that you’re a conniving weasel. There’s no upside to such BCCs, and considerable downside. Forward the message instead….The other place we need an “Are You Sure?” button is when hitting Reply All. If you’ve ever been trapped in clueless Reply Alls to a list and the inevitable aftershock of people Replying All to demand that people stop Replying All, enough said.
  5. The Withdraw Button. This would also be a boon to luckless workers caught, like dolphin in tuna nets, in aggravating social emails that just keep on going. For five years I’ve kept Outlook from deleting one of my favorite office emails — a June 2002 one that began with a picture of a friend’s new puppy and a request for suggested names. (I know, I know.) That burst of overenthusiasm touched off an overload spiral of appreciations of the puppy’s cuteness, suggested names and pet memories — until one co-worker struck a blow for all those suffering in silence: “How about naming the puppy ‘Remove Me From This List’?”

I thought about emailing the guy to tell him that he wrote a hilarious article, but it didn’t pass rule #4–the are you sure test. I think you could come up with just as good a list of tips for blogging.

My YouTube Debut

Over Christmas break, four friends and I drove over 2000 miles round trip to California for Texas A&M’s bowl game. Though the team got throttled, at least we made it on TV for 4 seconds.

You can see me sitting down on the left side–just next to my two friends who were caught consoling each other about the game. The title of the video is ‘You can’t kiss until after you score.’

Why? Texas A&M has a tradition where you get to kiss your date to the game every time the team scores. Well, if you watch the video closely, it almost looks like they are going in for a kiss–but this is not the case at all.

Rumor has it that I am being nominated for best supporting actor and best on screen laugh. Enjoy:

Celebrating New Life: Jonah Yancey Moore

There is big news in the Bluegrass state…Dr. Moore’s wife Maria gave birth to their fourth son, Jonah Yancey, this morning. The baby was 18.5 inches and 7 lb. 4 oz. Both mother and baby are doing well. You can read more about it from Dr. Moore here:

As is appropriate for coastal Mississippians, our son was born on Mardi Gras. He is the fourth of four boys, and will meet his three brethren in a few minutes. We are grateful to a Father God for bringing this child safely to us.

Above all things, though we pray that this young Jonah would be a godly man, valiant and loving and passionate for Christ Jesus. We prayed for his coming, and we prayed for his safety. Now we’ll pray every day for years that he will know, in the fullness of time and by the power of the Spirit, what his namesake learned: that God has delivers His anointed from the belly of death itself. We pray that He will look away from himself and to Another.

Too Cold For Comfort

Walking to class today in single digit temperatures was the definition of no fun. So much for global warming.

How do you know when things are getting cold? Cami went on a quest today to acquire a space heater to keep us extra toasty during this cold snap. Lowe’s was sold out and Wal-Mart’s stock was depleted–only three remained. Cami quickly snatched one up. Thankfully, I have been able to use the heater to thaw my fingers enough to type a blog post.

I can’t think of a better way for you to make the most of a cold night than to check out this excellent chapel message from Dr. Russell Moore from Exodus 1:1-2:10, “So Maybe Denial Is a River in Egypt: Blessing, Ministry, and Your Best Life Later”