Saturday, January 28, 2006

I'm ON!

Boy, I just can't tell you how happy I am at this very second. As I type this, I am sitting in front of my computer AT HOME and not paying $6 an hour at Starbucks to access the internet.

I signed up with Verizon again for my internet although admittedly I was very tempted to go with cable access. I have been so happy with Verizon though, I ultimately just couldn't switch (even if it means slower speeds). But then, I got to thinking about it, how fast is fast enough? I mean, really? I can watch movies, hear music, and download pretty quickly. Yeah, I thought about all that and am with Verizon.

And, here is what is really cool: I got the wireless modem from Verizon this time. I figured living in such a big ass ol' house deserves wireless access. And now, I can run my wireless laptop downstairs, or outside, or sitting on my 'as of yet but soon to be' completed deck outback. So, I am very happy.

What made me almost as happy was the cable television being turned on this morning. The cable guy came out and hooked it up for me. I figured living in as quiet a town as I now do, having cable will keep me from going bonkers when at 8pm I discover that everything in this town is closed. Now, when I get all ancy, I can turn on the history channel (or the cartoon network) when I get bored.

And (yes, I have one final 'and'), I just went through my email!! Woo-hoo! I feel like I am more settled than ever right now even though I've only been in town for a couple of weeks.

Anyways, that's my update. I'll write more later. Right now, I need to finish up my sermon form in the morning. Seeing how I have to be at church now by 9am, I don't have have what I used to, Sunday mornings to finish writing my sermon. So, I'd better get going. It's almost done; it just needs some fine-tuning.

Later I will write my review of the movie, Brokeback Mountain, that I saw this past Thursday.

Saturday, January 21, 2006

A Friend's New Blog

A friend of mine and his wife have a new blog up and running. It's really great and, being the fancy smancy folks that they are, they have their blog through typepad (which isn't free and is really nice). If you'd like to get to know two really amazingly great folks, check out their blog at:

The Shadow of the Wind

I was in a Barnes and Nobles while in Oklahoma and found myself looking for another book written in the history/conspiracy/religion genre that I love so much and picked up a copy of a book that had the best list of recommendations I think I've ever read about a book. The book is titled, "The Shadow of the Wind" and it is written by Carlos Zafon.

The book is presently sitting next to my recliner and I read a couple of chapters a night and it truly is living up to its recommendations. The story takes place over 50 years ago in Spain and its about a son of a antique bookstore owner who discovers a special book. The boy finds the book in a place called The Cemetery of Forgotten Books and once in his possession, the book comes alive in his own life as he grows up. The story is full of mystery and intrigue as well as having some already touching moments of poignancy. (I should be a book critic, eh?). If you're looking for a nice read, I'd definiately recommend it.

Let there be light!

Okay, so I figured I might as well write about what happened a week ago Sunday. It was my first Sunday preaching and I had awoken extra early to get ready for it. Upon waking up, I noticed that I awoke to my cell phone's alarm rather than my clock radio. Unable to get my mind to comprehend what that meant, I got up and realized my house was without power. After checking the fuse box and seeing that nothing was blown, I went outside and was stunned by the 4 inches of fresh snow on the ground. It seems the night before a snow storm had moved in. I called the local power company to report my power outage when I was told it wasn't just me, it was the whole town.

And so, there I was- my first Sunday was going to be snowed in. I called the chair of the church's trust committee to say that we might want to develop a plan of action seeing how the church would be without power to heat the building for the kids. Thinking we'd have to postpone the services or cancel them all together, the chair and I decided to meet at the church and decide then what we'd do. Arriving around 9am, there were already a bunch of people there getting ready for my first Sunday. After a brief discussion, we decided to call the parents of the children and inform them that the church is without power and let them decide whether they'd bring their kids.

Before long though, more and more people arrived and it looked like we'd have church, with kids and everyone else there. As 10:30am approached, I robed up and the church's music director began playing the prelude for the Sunday service as we all sat in the darkened sanctuary. When Cory stopped playing, I stood up before the people and said,

"Good morning, and welcome to Cresskill Congregational, United Church of Christ. My name is David Bocock and I want to remind you that no matter who you are, or where you are on life's journey (it was here that I outstretched my arms and hands), you're welcome here!"

And the lights suddenly came on. And the congregation erupted in applause. Let me tell you, that was one heck of a way to begin a Sunday! One lady said it was like a divine affirmation of my being there. Another lady said I must've paid the electric company something because the timing looked suspicious. heh heh... I was thrilled about the whole thing.

The service went very well after that and we all had a nice time (and a nice way to remember my first Sunday). Following church, I had a Christian Ed meeting and then, after a brief discussion with a trustee of the church, I came home and began my first Sunday after church tradition: I took a long nap. It was truly a wonderful Sunday.

Internet Access

Well, I know its been ages and ages since I've posted on here- or at least, it seems like it's been that long seeing how I don't have access to the internet on a regular basis. Presently, I am sitting in a Starbucks in Closter, NJ (pronounced Cloe-ster). I signed up for the pay as you go access and am drinking expensive coffee and enjoying the nectar of the gawds (read: Copenhagen snuff).

Anyways, I stopped off at my former church on Friday to pick up some mail when a friend said, "When are you going to update your blog already?!" I had forgotten that one way friends from my former church can stay in touch with me is through my blog entries--assuming I actually write any. I told my friend about my internet woes and promised I'd update it very soon. So, here I am.

To give you all a brief update as to my happenings here of late. After I returned from Oklahoma, I attended my last service at Broadway UCC in NYC. It was a great service followed by a wonderful time of food, friendship, and remembrance at my going away dinner that evening. I was touched by what everyone who spoke said and it was a powerful testimony to my ministry there. It was an evening that I'll never forget.

On Tuesday, two days after my last Sunday, I moved into the parsonage in Cresskill, NJ. Wow, what a huge difference my living space has become. I moved from a small 1 BR into a two-story farmhouse with a huge front porch. While the place isn't decorated yet, soon it'll be (esp since I live about 20 minutes from Ikea!). The church has yet to complete some really cool updates and upgrades to the parsonage; once that happens, I'll have an even cooler pad to call home.

All last week was spent unpacking at home and at the office. By Sunday, I was almost completely unpacked and nearly settled into everything. This past week has been spent getting acqauinted with the secretary, learning who's who in the congregation, and introducing myself to everyone. I also spent the week getting to know my neighborhood.

Oh, and I almost forgot, I also bought a car this week. I went to several car dealerships and finally found something that was both affordable and roomy enough for my tall self. I bought a 1999 Oldsmobile Bravada. It looks like a wide Ford Bronco. While I don't get great gas milage, I do fit into it nicely. And, with the bonus seat warmers, I can now drive in style knowing that my bottom will be nice and warm. It also has leather seats and a nice stereo system.

I drove my car back into NYC yesterday. I needed to go back to my old apartment to gather some stuff I'd left and to prepare it for a massive cleaning that I'll do next week. Afterwards, I stopped off at my old church to get some mail (where my friend commented on my bloglessness) and then had dinner with some friends. Afterwards, we went out for drinks at a fun bar on Christopher Street and then I headed back to New Jersey.

Today I've been out window shopping at Best Buy and then onto Ikea where I looked around and brought back their new 2006 catalog.

I've had quite the full day. Now I need to head home and finish my sermon for in the morning. This is pretty much my brief update. I'll write more later. And, I'll write about the really funny thing that happened on my first Sunday preaching at the church.

Thursday, January 05, 2006

Back from Oklahoma

Well, I am back home from my Christmas vacation. I had such a great time and to prove it, I gained 8 pounds! My mom likes to make her Christmas fudge (more than 10 lbs of it) and I usually eat all or most of it while I am home.

My trip home was truly peaceful and seeing my family and friends was great. I also took the opportunity to do some minor traveling while I was there. Last week, I rented a car and went to Dallas to visit with a highschool friend. And then, while coming back to Oklahoma City, I stopped off in Shawnee, OK to visit with another high school friend and his new wife and child. I had such a super time.

And, this is the real kicker- my mom's computer went on the blink and as a result, I had no internet connection for most of my trip. So, for well over a week, I also had a vacation from my email and being online. Now THAT truly made my vacation even more wonderful.

While I was there, I began putting together a few blog entries that I meant to post online when I got the chance. I will post a few of those postings later this week.

Okay, so now that I am back in New York, I have so much to do in a very short amount of time. Namely, the movers are coming next Tuesday to move me to New Jersey. I must spend the rest of the week packing and getting ready. Today and half of tomorrow I will be in the office shoring up my work there and even packing my office stuff for the movers next week.

While I haven't really posted anything in awhile, I'll need to extend that a bit until I am all situated in New Jersey. I'll put something up from time to time; but my postings won't be regular again for about another 2 weeks.

The Cab Driver and the Nun

A really good friend of mine is a Catholic priest who sends me a joke once in awhile. Here is his latest offering. ;)

A cabbie picks up a nun. She gets into the cab, and notices that the very handsome cab driver won't stop staring at her. She asks him why he is staring.
He replies: "I have a question to ask you, but I don't want to offend you." She answers, "My son, you cannot offend me. When you're as old as I am and have been a nun as long as I have, you get a chance to see and hear just about everything. I'm sure that there's nothing you could say or ask that I would find offensive."
"Well, I've always had a fantasy to have a nun kiss me." She responds, "Well, let's see what we can do about that: #1, you have to be single and #2, you must ! be Catholic." The cab driver is very excited and says, "Yes, I'm single and Catholic!"
"OK," the nun says. "Pull into the next alley." The nun fulfills the cab driver's fantasy with a kiss that would make a hooker blush. But when they get back on the road, the cab driver starts crying.
"My dear child," said the nun, why are you crying?"
"Forgive me but I have sinned. I lied and I must confess, I'm married and I'm Jewish."
The nun says, "That's OK. My name is Kevin and I'm going to a Halloween party."