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Sunday, April 24, 2005

Where the next step will lead...

“Who can say?”

Who can tell us our names?
Who can say where our next step will take us?
Who knows who we are?

Who can say?

Can the moon?
Can the stars?

But they choose not to speak
Save in silent whispers
On clear, cold nights
In early spring,
Whisper to the shadows they cast
In their pale, refreshing light
Of a man not quite yet a man
On the steps of his home
And his life as it changes
Beneath his feet.

And as he turns his face
To the cold night’s breeze,
The light is caught and held
By the clear eyes
Of the man not quite a man
And it is a sweet whisper indeed.

“Who can say?”
He whispers back and looks
To the ground
In the light,
To the next step
He must take,
And the man
Not yet a man
And not alone
Beneath the moon
And the stars
In the cool
And breathes
And knows
And steps…

“Who can say?”

Friday, April 22, 2005

The Announcement

I do believe that I mentioned in a previous post many moons ago that I was going to make an announcement, and I suppose the time has come. It's really going to be rather superfluous now, as most if not all of you already know about this particular piece of news, but whatever. A man's gotta do what a man's gotta do...or something like that. Um.....yeah. Anyways, my announcement:

Ladies and Gentlemen, I am proud to announce that commencing this fall Benjamin Phillips will be joing the undergraduate class of 2009 at the illustrious and wonderful....*drum roll please...thank you....that's quite can stop now....dangit Fuller! Just put the @#*$% drumsticks down before I have to come over there and vivissect you all over your pretty lil' drumset...thank you*..ahem, as I was saying, this coming year I will officially be a proud member of the 2009 undergraduate class of none other than the lovely Duke University.

....forgive me, but I must.


Yes, this means that I'll be stickin' around for at least the next four years, which is perfectly fine with me. For all those of you were looking forward to finally getting rid of me, I have this to say: MWUA HAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHA!!!!!! ....*ahem* Sorry 'bout that. Had an evil moment. Won't happen again, well, not for a little while at least.

I actually spent the majority of the day today over at one of the happy open house days they had over at Duke. Now, the thing about these days is that they are designed to sell Duke to students who haven't decided where they're going yet. In spite of this fact, however, I decided to go to see what sort of opportunities I might want to take advantage of next year and I really did learn a lot (especially from that guy's shirt that said "P is for Porn". Now THAT was educational). Here are just a few of the things I learned:
-I learned that no matter which seat you pick in any lecture hall or auditorium anywhere, it will always squeak when you move.
-I learned that large men should not wear suits on very hot days when they have to give tours.
-I learned that there is something about buses that makes all bus-drivers look grumpy, apathetic, and like they might just eat you if you say anything.
-I learned that the chairs at colleges are designed to keep you awake during lectures.
-I learned that high school men's soccer teams should not be allowed to go to Amsterdam with only their coach to supervise them.
-I learned that people always pay more attention to a presentation if you give them free stuff.
-I learned that even from a medium distance, without my glasses all middle-aged balding men in suits look the same.
And finally:
-I learned that students who wear shirts like the one I mentioned back up there just because "it fits their mood" should be avoidied at all costs.

While we're speaking of Duke, I got an email from them after I was informed of my admission of which I took special note. The reason for this attention was because the subject of this particular email appeared in my inbox as follows: "Contact information for current Duke stud...". Needless to say, this intrigued me. Who was this Stud? How did he get to be the official Duke stud? And most importantly, why in the nine hells were they sending me his contact information? Was I chosen to be his apprentice, or did they think I would want to...take advantage of what he had to offer (I certainly didn't remember putting that on my application)? Either way, one thing was clear: this was one email I had to read at all costs. With trembling finger I opened up the treacherous compilation of bits and bytes....only to find, much to the dismay of my curiosity, that the email was ACTUALLY entitled "Contact information for current Duke students." *sigh* So anticlimactic.... Oh well. Maybe that email is still floating around out there for me...maybe someday...You never know.

Sunday, April 17, 2005

The Day has Come.

It's gone, all of it. The day has finally come....

Saturday, April 16, 2005

So wrong...

Alright, first check out this trailer for the new movie Kingdom of Heaven.

Now, the trailer is amazingly put together. It shows you what the movie is about and sells it very well, while not giving away the entire plot including major developments/main character deaths/how the movie ends. It's also (obviously) very visually appealing, presenting a wide range of shots and tones from throughout the movie, allowing the viewer to get a good feel for the scope of the film. Besides, it just looks freaking awesome and Orlando Bloom doesn't completely look like a girl. Now, given all that, please, please tell me that you realize that the music in the middle of the trailer is just plain wrong. There is absolutely nothing right at all about a cavalry charge set to an electric guitar rock solo. It's just so wrong....

Friday, April 15, 2005

Mid-Western House Fires

I feel it necessary for the good of humanity (or at least y'all) to put up an account of my Thursday. Days like this just don't come around all the time. So, pull up your lawn chairs and enjoy it like a mid-western house fire.

My day.
Woke up to see my only mostly completed English homework (part of the project thingy that is the majority of our grade this quarter) still spread out in front of me and came to the realization that I had, in fact, not done my other homework, including reading the chapter that I was supposed to present with my partner to my French class (a presentation that we had not prepared). Add to this the fact that I woke up about 30 minutes later than I normally do....(Which resulted in my breakfast consisting of three granola bars, a nutri-grain bar, and an apple) I don't think clariten has any nutritional value, but you can throw that in there too if you want) Anyways, I planned to use my Video class to read my French, only to discover that I had left not only my book at home, but my study questions and vocab sheet as well. So I spent video finishing up my English (I didn't entirely finish it until right before English class started. I finished it out in the hallway).Now, normally I would use lunch to do the French reading and to meet with my partner. Unfortunately, the Christian fellowship club at our school meets at lunch on Thursdays.
The club that I co-lead.
Now, usually I would ask the girl who leads it with me to run the show without me at least until I could finish, but unfortunately she couldn't be there during lunch today because she had an essay to write for something. (By this point I had borrowed my French teacher's copy of the book, and I had planned out the lesson with my partner in my physics class)
So, I do the club thing, then get to my class, and spend the first part of class (another group presented before us) reading the chapter I was about to teach. By some Act of God we actually managed to pull it off. I mean, we even stuck in an impromptu skit. Anyways, with that over and done, I just went and chilled in social studies.
Towards the end of class though, I was really needing to pay a visit to the little boys room, so after the bell rang and I grabbed my stuff, I headed off to have a private meeting with the John.
It was absolutely disgusting in there. Not only was there some dude changing right in front of the stalls, but the last three people to use both stalls had not found it necessary to flush. So I had to make a wee stop by the Church on the way home.
Anyways, I get home and I get to work/stuff I do at home (e.g. waste time), when I realize that it's a glorious day outside. Perfect for filming.
So I call up my dad and arrange for him to come home early to help me film, which he does. Unfortunately, he then informs me that he has a telecast of a lecture that he needs to see. As a result, we only ended up reshooting one shot in my car (during which I almost hit a mailbox) instead of finishing up all but the last three shots I need.
And that was my day.

Wednesday, April 13, 2005

Behold the Majesty...

Originally uploaded by PlushToy.
A little while ago I had the utter delight of being able to watch for the first time a certain film entitled "Napoleon Dynamite" with some very good friends of mine. Now, I enjoyed the movie for several reasons, chief of which was the company I saw it with, but there were several other things that stuck with me from the movie. The first is the disturbing resemblence between Napolean when you first see him in his suit and pictures I have seen of my father from high school and college. Seriously, just put a wee bit more meat on him (just a wee bit) and make the hair about shoulder length, wavy, and dark brown and that would be my dad. Now, while I'm sure there are other children out there who's fathers once looked like Napoleon Dynamite, but the second thing that struck me is slightly more unique. Do you remember when Napoleon explains his lovely drawing to Deb? The one of the Liger? Well, as he did so, I flashed back suddenly to my childhood, and lo, there I was in a small private zoo near Batavia, Illinois. I saw myself in my wee orange shirt as I wandered amongst the cages and petted the kid goats who were solely interested in consuming my shoelaces, the little green water pistol I had brought along to defend my mother from the dangerous animals sticking out of the back of my shorts. As I watched, I made my wee lil' way past the gorillas and the baboon, and over to a cage between the lions and the tigers that held one lone animal, confidently asleep upon a stone table. My young eyes filled with wonder at what I saw before me. It was thus that I first beheld the Liger. Next to the majesty that exuded from the beast upon that stone table, even the spitting llama and the monkey that shook your hand when you came in paled by comparison.
From that day forth, I never forgot the Liger, so majestic and yet so sad. Even as I left that zoo, he was still eith me. I have carried him inside me all the long years betwixt that day and now. And so children, behold the majesty that I saw in my youth. I give you the Liger. Enjoy.

Tuesday, April 12, 2005

Tea Anyone?

I'm blogging in my French classroom, there are two guys behind me putting on a puppet show, and my French teacher is singing "Nobody Knows" in a high, squeaky voice. Sometimes my life is just too surreal for a normal guy like me. Like yesterday morning. I was half asleep/half dead, I spent my first period watching my eye blink in an extreme close-up over and over again, my physics teacher told me I have abnormally large pupils, and when I was walking back from checking out my next book for English I noticed the person in front of me was carrying a rubber chicken. It's just too much. Too much I say! mmmmmm....I think I'm gonna go read Georgie Porgie's blog again if I have time. Man, that boy sure knows how to make up for a long absence. I haven't laughed that hard in many moons.

Speaking of the book we're going to be reading in English next (Dostoevsky's Crime and Punishment), I thought I would share this quote about Mr. Dostoevsky from the introduction: "He skulked in a hotel room for which he could not afford to pay and tried to subsist on tea." *sigh* I love it.

....dude, Sean. Quit reading my blog while I'm typing. It's distracting. Oh, and yeah, your commentary is really not necessary. Nor is it helpful....I'm going to hurt you.

Quote of the day: "You know it's time for bed when I can almost see you in claymation." -Alyssa DeJong, 4/12/05. Why do I torment these poor, innocent people? Why? Personally though, I don't have claymation hallucinations when I stay up too late, although last night after I made my lunch I put my sandwich in the freezer, so I woke up to a frozen PB&J this morning. On the plus side, I didn't need a freezer block.

Wow, sorry for the scatterbrained post. I'm kinda all over the place and I apparently left the meat of the post in the freezer with my sandwich. Well, that said I will leave you with a lovely random question? If you were a drink would you be caffenated, carbonated, or illegal in the US for individuals under the age of 21 (for those of you who don't speak Ben, that means alcoholic)? What would I be? And most importantly, would George be a smoothie?

Thursday, April 07, 2005


Have you ever noticed that some of the most vile noises on earth proceed from the bowels of condiment bottles? I'm serious. I was making myself a perfectly normal sandwich at about 12:30 last night and the sounds that mustard bottle made me physically ill. If it were not for the fact that I'll eat anything I would be incredibly surprised that I was in fact able to eat the thing today. Ketchup bottles are no better. Ours is down to the very dregs and it produces some horrible and disgustingly juicy sounds when it is forced to give up what little of the Heins fortune it has left in it.....and I don't care what anybody says, turkey basters are just disgusting.

You know, I've got to stop starting posts one day and then finishing them up like two or three days later. It's very frustrating. For example, take the quote of the day. How am I supposed to have a quote for the day if I don't finish my posts on the same day I start them? I think I started this one on, what? Wednesday? That sounds about right. Oh look, there's a wee date at the bottom of the page. Yes, I did start it on Wednesday. Wow, I actually remembered something. Aren't you just so proud of me? Anyways, I'm going to stick up the quote of the day for Wednesday and call it the quote of the day regardless of what day it may or may not actually be in reality. Oh, and for those of you who find this quotation rather politically incorrect, I apologize. I am not politically correct, nor is the person I'm quoting. That's why it's funny. Get it? Yeah, well just read the quote why don't you, huh?

"I feel so special now. I saved a Mexican!" -Rory Cullen, having just completed his wee letter to our lovely senator on the issue of migrant farm workers' rights after much persuasion to do so by a man who once wore lederhousen while campaigning for student government senator. (4/6/05)

*bouncy bouncy bouncy bouncy*

Wow, I'm hyper. It's so weird. The less sleep I get, the more hyper I get later in the day, starting pretty much right after lunch. Like at the prayer vigil. There was about one hour when I suddenly just got really hyper. I believe I jumped over Jo's wee head....scared the crap out of her too if I recall....mmmmmmm.....or the time in my French class when I had gone to bed at 4:30 the night before and I was so much more active than usual (e.g. they weren't checking ym pulse every five minutes to make sure I was still there) they actually asked me if I was on crack.....good times, although I wish my leg would stop bouncing all over the place like that. It's getting kinda annoying....

I'm going to have an anouncement to put up here soon....and if you know what it is (or think you know) then you can just keep that to yourself.

Man, sick people can be really scary. This morning I heard this hacking and wheezing sound coming at me from the other side fo the fridge door. I shut the door and turned to see my sick mother lurching towards me all hunched over with her arms kinda held out in front of her uttering the most horrifying of noise. Her face was even scary looking, with her eyes all squinty and her face scrunched up. I seriously thought my mother had died and become a zombie and was now coming to eat my brain, probably after infecting me and letting me die slowly. Do you know how disconcerting that is early in the morning when you aren't fully awake yet and all you want to do is eat your cream of wheat and not go to school? Oi...

Well, that's about all my scattered brain can come up with right now (that is suitable for all audiences), so I'll just leave you with this: There was once a man who worked at a factory. One day, he was assigned to give a tour of the factory. While they were on their tour, the man decided to show them how one machine worked. This machine was a press composed of a heavy, flat metal section that would slam down on top of another when a foot pedal was depressed. As the man explained how it worked, he placed his hand on top of the first metal plate where the material to be pressed would go and then stepped on the foot pedal. Horrified at seeing the stump of the man's hand, one of the people on the tour cried out "What did you do?!" Somewhat dazed, the man stuck his other hand on the plate and said, "Well, I just stuck my hand on her like this and stepped on the pedal like this..." and proceeded to step on the pedal. The moral of this story: stupidity and other people's misfortunes can be downright hilarious. Well, goodnight everybody.

Friday, April 01, 2005

Back to the Basics

As you may have noticed, before my long and apparently spring break-induced absence (for which I offer my most profuse apologies) I made a great many "Hey, here's a poem" type of posts. Now, while I have absolutely nothing against such posts and find great worth in them personally, I feel that this small semblence of a blog seems to be lacking something that perhaps it once comments that aren't simply the "wow, that was nice. I really liked that" kind of comment that does wonders for my self-confidence (and are part of the reason you had so darn many of those poem posts and which have begun to turn my ego into a slathering, monstrous beast of nigh epic proportions that threatens to consume us all and all the alchohol in the house. I don't know why egos like booze, but apparently they just do). So yes, the ol' girl needs something to revitalize her, to bring her back to life. Thus I have decided to go back to my roots and to what I do best: rambling incoherently. And so, let us ramble together, you and I, in a dance of words that shall take us lightly around the universes deepest mysteries and its greatest trifles as we spin around in the rain of our own thoughts and flights of fancy. Where shall we go tonight? Don't ask me. I just write these things. We shall go where ever the wind carries us I suppose....

So after my Holland team meeting earlier tonight and after a beautiful drive through the rain-washed night I arrived home to discover that there was a cloud in my driveway. Not a very large cloud mind you, but a cloud nonetheless. Further inspection revealed that it was not so much that there was a cloud in my driveway as there was a cloud in my front yard (which was actually the edge of the cloud in my neighbors yard, but we don't like to talk about them or their satanically possessed, evil dog who thirsts for my father's blood). Now, when I say cloud you may be thinking I mean a light conglomeration of mist tendrils floating about above the ground. You would, however, be greatly mistaken. When I say cloud, I mean cloud. I had a cloud sitting in my yard. I could not see beyond the edges of my yard below about six feet above the ground, and as I stood in the middle of my yard under the pale light of the moon I would not have been surprised in the least if an army of blue-painted Scottish warriors had slowly taken form in front of me as the strode out of the mists (in slow motion and accompanied to dramatic orchestral music nonetheless). There is something hauntingly beautiful about the mists though, about the moonlit fog that rests quietly upon the brow of the earth. The way the light gets caught in the air and held there in muted tones of pale softness....the way the darkening whiteness wraps around you and everything like a warm frost and then there is stillness....such a stillness that steals your breath for fear of breaking it...if there is magic in this world, and there is, then it is found on foggy nights beneath a cool and gentle moon....I have slowly discovered that I have a somewhat large capacity for appreciating beauty (it's in all of us really). I look around and if I take the time, I can see some little shard of beauty everywhere. Now my dad's a real sucker for vista points. When we're on a road trip or we're off driving somewhere on scenic road, he's bound to pull over somewhere over-looking some gorgeous spot where we will stay for a while, take some pictures, he'll tell a story from his youth either about the place we're viewing or about a place very similar to it, and then we'll drive on. Now I love great views. I'm not particularly one for cityscapes, but I still remember standing on the peak of a mountain in the Rockies and just looking around, out across the land so far below out to the shadowy wall of the approaching storm and its robe of rain. There is great beauty in that, and in the spectacular that our world has to offer, but there is also beauty in the things we tend to pass by. Most nights we think of having a cloud on the road as a nuisance and a danger, what with not being able to see but three feet of road in front of us, but if we only slow down and look, we find the beauty. We see not how the fog obscures our vision, but how it frosts the dark world around us and how we seem to find light shining through it in the most unlikely of places. Every morning I drive to school, I look out at the building as I walk towards it and most mornings I see something akin to a prison with brick trim and a green color scheme inside, but then there's that rare morning that I have come to look for when I look out at that school and I see the beams of the morning sun reaching out to it, caressing it and bursting forth from the clouds to shune upon it and it alone and I see not simply my school and the drudgery that may be associated with it, but I see the beauty of a promise, and of hope. I look at people and I find that I have a tendency to see the beauty in them in spite of the faults, and believe me there is greater beauty by far in each single life that inhabits this earth than there is in all the universe. Maybe it's something to do with being an encourager that helps me to see the beauty in people, but it is there regardless, in all of us. All it takes is an open heart to see it (although a helping hand from the Father doesn't hurt. Not at all). It is a gift to be sought after with fervent prayer to be able to see the beauty in the ones who hurt us, in the ones who we long to hate. It may seems a strange gift, but it is one of the greatest we can receive, for it break our hearts and heals them through the breaking so they can be saved...we are a people made to thirst for beauty and, when we find it, to drink it deeply and give glory to the Beautiful One who made it for us. I just think that we need to stop more often and breathe, and in the moment of that breath see around us all the great beauty of our lives and of our Father, and then breathe again...and know that life is good.

Take care of yourselves and God bless.
Sleep well.