Thursday, June 30, 2005

Working out

Worked my sorry butt off today. With all the carbs I ate yesterday I had no trouble running 2 miles (27 min. @ 4.6 mph). I also walked for 30 minutes at a nice 3.5 mph pace, and did 20 min. on the eliptical. I'm ready for a nap, but have a whole shift ahead of me! *yawn* And tonight's my late night because it's laundry night.

BART strike?

I keep hearing rumblings about a possible BART strike next week. That would be really horrible. While I can get anywhere I need to by bus, it takes much longer. BART is fast and convenient. I hope they don't strike. If they do, it will be next Tuesday night/Wednesday morning at midnight.

Wednesday, June 29, 2005

Under 150!

I've been below 150 on my home scale where I can weigh myself before coffee and sans most clothes, but it's been elusive on the gym's scale - until today. I finally got to move the big slider down one notch, and the little slider to the far right side, and came in at 149! Woohoo! I'm getting there.

I've been craving fries today, so I went and binged on carbs today and ate all sorts of thing I shouldn't. Now I'm thirsty, and due to the carbs, I'm retaining it all. So I'll be well above 150 for about a week. :( Oh well. Back on track tomorrow and get my sorry ass down to the gym and burn off some of these carbs. Maybe I'll try to run since I seem to do better at it when my glycogen supplies are full.

About.com changes its format, take 2

The new format is so awful and hard to navigate. Additionally, when I log in under the name I have used for the past 6 years, it kicks me into the forum under an ancient name that I don't like and haven't used in ages. They stole my name from me and now my post counts starts all over again at zero! This was the final straw and I've pretty much left. There's another place where others who dislike the new format can go.

Jeanne set up a forum specifically for people from the About Weight Loss forum:
Our Own Weigh To Healthy Lifestyles

Oh, I checked into getting my BMR (base metabolic rate) retested when I reach my weight goal. The cost is $49 and I can purchase it as a stand-alone without any personal training or anything. So I'll do that when I get to 140.

Honorable mention?

Got mentioned on my friend Richard's blog today, and he linked here. To anyone who visits from there, welcome to my blog, with my thoughts about everything from religion to politics to diet. And yes, I am a confirmed fan of Atkins. My health has improved so much I don't intend to ever stop this new lifestyle. Thank you, Dr. A! As of this morning, I've lost 60 pounds. :)

Tuesday, June 28, 2005

Tightening the noose...

This was written by a friend and explains a few situations that should be of concern to anyone who believes in freedom of speech.

---

Tightening the noose...

... on Christians who believe homosexuality is a sin.

Case in point: Christian organization in the UK preaches this and has a website for recovery, is kicked out of their bank.

BBC News
The Guardian
Christian Voice
The Cooperative Bank

Hat tip to Cosmic fool of Pagan Christian Moot for running down everyone's viewpoint. A fair-minded man.

Case in point #2:

Catholic World News
World Net Daily

J. Matt Barber, a manager at Allstate insurance company, on his own time from his own computer wrote an essay decrying the gay lifestyle. This is the article he wrote:

The Conservative Voice

A bit outspoken, yes, but a man IS entitled to his religious beliefs--especially since they are ones I share.

Did I mention I own an Allstate insurance policy? Not for much longer, I assure you. I'm cancelling it as soon as I get another company lined up.

Sigh ... I imagine this is how persecution will start. People will probably still be able to wear the label for many years, perhaps decades. But the Spirit of the Age brooks no rivals. No one will be persecuted for being "Christian" -- but if we try to make more of it than a label,if we insist that the Bible speaks truth on these issues, the more and more pressure we will be brought under. As you can see, people are losing their jobs for the sake of the Gospel. I think it's fair to describe that as the bare beginnings of persecution.

I can only hope that we move quickly from the "we won't hire you" phase to the "concentration camp" phase in short order. Then at least I'll be sure of three squares a day :).

Respectfully,

BrianP.

---

Here's the contact information on the J. Matt Barber case. Let Allstate know how you feel. I wrote them a letter and - and kindly as possible - gave them a piece of my mind.

Edward M. Liddy, Chairman
Allstate Corporation
2775 Sanders Rd
Northbrook, IL 60062
Primary Phone: 800-574-3553
Secondary Phone: 847-402-5000
Fax: 847-836-3998
E-Mail: eliddy@allstate.com

We must stand up for our rights, or watch them eroded.

Monday, June 27, 2005

This green tea is certainly working! I've had no problem staying under 1900 calories. I just ate a plain salad with no carb dressing and I'm full. I'll save my sandwich and cheese for later. This stuff really does help supress appetite better than plain water.

My last appointment with my GP doc is tomorrow. I really liked him. He actually treated me as an intelligent person. Hard to find docs like that. I'd love to weigh under 150 on their scale, but with breakfast and clothes I doubt I'll make it. Oh well, I'll be happy if I show ANY loss from my last appointment 2 months ago. I need to be sure to ask him for a new Celexa prescription and tell him that I'm stopping the Wellbutrin when I run out. It helps a little, but it's just not worth the money I have to spend on it. Hopefully when I have to wean off the Celexa I'll be able to try Zoloft again. It was a very good med for my depression. Worked wonders.

Hoping for a good weigh-in on my home scale tomorrow. Here's to seeing ANYTHING under 150!

149.4

Weighed in at 149.4 this morning. I'll believe it when I see it again tomorrow if it doesn't bounce up. Won't be able to weigh myself on the gym scale until Wednesday. I have stuff to do both today and tomorrow. :(

Wearing my size 8 jeans for the first time today! The relaxed ones are tight in the waist when I sit down, but not form fitting in the hip and thigh. I have a pair of stretch just-below-waist ones, but am afraid of their form fitting in the hip and thigh so I'll try them on another day.

Sunday, June 26, 2005

The Good Side of Bad Side Effects

I've been adding old entries to my blog as I find posts online that look interesting and qualify as good blog entries. Anyway, today I added one that I wanted to share now, since I know most people won't go crawling through the archives.

It's a piece I wrote about the medication I take and the weight gain it caused. The response to this post on the Depression forum was zip - not one reply. On the Weight Loss forum I at least got a few replies.

The Good Side of Bad Side Effects

My Amazon review on Dr. Atkins' New Diet Revolution

After reading some reviews for another weight loss book, I decided to read some reviews about Dr. Atkins' New Diet Revolution, and put my own two cents in. Here is is for anyone who wants to read it. It was first in the "customer review" section last I checked.

New Diet Revolution review

And for anyone who cares about all of my book reviews (three to date), they are here.

About.com changes its format

This really sucks. About.com, which used to uise the same user-friendly fomat that Delphi uses, is changing to something completely different on Tuesday. Here's the thread on it. From there is a link to the Football forum, which has already been changed over. I don't like the new format and find it less user-friendly than that old one. I'd like to know why corporate decided this needed to be done.

Here's my post in the Football forum:

Testing.

Why did they have to change the layout. It was the same as Delphi and easy to navigate and I really have this new layout. The frames were MUCH better and allowed me to read messages AND scan thread titles at the same time.

This sucks and I for one want the old format back.

[Edit: We can no longer click on our message to get the URL to it. And when we edit the signature disappears so if I wanted to edit my sig in just one post - can't be done. This just gets crappier and crappier.]

---

Hrumph.

Saturday, June 25, 2005

Eating when gone all day

Saturday. Bleh.

Candy for breakfast (only a little) and coffee with low carb creamer. Later I ate one of the sandwiches I made. At church I had some Cheese-Its and some peanuts. Also 4 low carb cookies I brought with me.

Lunch was soup, salad, and bread, but the salad was all I could eat. So I had 3 or 4 plates of salad. On the way to the person's house I ate my second sandwich, not knowing if I would be able to eat any dinner there.

Dinner was lasagna, Togo's sandwiches, and Togo's salad. Again, I could only eat the salad. I wasn't hungry, but had one big plate of salad. All the desserts were sugar except for the Keto pudding I brought, so I ate a bunch of my pudding. All the drinks they had were sugary, but I asked about diet and she gave me Diet 7-Up. I followed that with sparkling water and black coffee.

I know I'm low on protein for the day - except for the sandwiches I made, all I ate was salad! I'm not a rabbit! Bleh. I'm having wine now and considering eating some cheese before bed. I've just been busy packing the second half of my lunches for the week. I ran out of time to do it all Friday.

Hoping that TOM will be slow enough to go swimming tomorrow. Gotta burn some calories!

I wish I had done better, but my cheat days keep me on my diet and sane so oh well.

Oh yeah, I had two bites of a sugar wafer, one bite of brownie, and one bite of some banana desert. I guess I feel guilty about that. And Jane's salad had apples. I feel guilty about that, too. :( I feel like I did horrible today.

Thursday, June 23, 2005

Polls are back!

Studious people may have noticed that the polls I introduced disappeared a while ago. Well, they are back again, on the lower end of the left hand column. I had to squish it to make it fit, so it's reeeaaally long, lol! I'll probably be swapping it out with other items of interest in the future, but for now, the polls are back.

Place your pin!, take 2

It's come to my attention that some of you may not know how to place your pin in the map. When you get to the map, a pop up window will open (give it a minute - it will come up). You need to close that window. Look for the text that says something like "Close this window," and click that. The window should disappear. Then you need to click the upper left button on the map that says, "Post." A hand holding a tack should appears. Place the tip of the pin where you live and click your mouse. That will place the pin. A window will come up asking for the info. to go with your pin (name, homepage, etc.). Enter as much or as little as you want. But please, at least leave your first name or your online name.

Thanks! Post a comment here if you have any questions. :)

152.2

This is the first reading I got on my new scale - my first scale! :-) That's right, I finally joined the number of Americans that own a bathroom scale. I prefer the one at the gym, but I want to be able to weigh myself every day and track my weight that way. Right now I can only track my weight on the days I go to the gym.

Anyway, official gym weight today was 152 even. By the time I used the Weight Watchers' scale I'd worked out, drank some water, eaten half a meal bar, and was wearing heavier clothes.

The scale I bought is from Weight Watchers, model WW10R. The only difference between my scale and the picture in the link is that my scale has a little button beneath the weight display so that you can save your weight into memory.
Still 152 today. Was really hoping it would go down. Hopefully by Sunday.

And I bought a scale today. I am still deep in negative numbers, but it was payday and what's payday without one "fun" purchase? I got the Weight Watchers digital scale with 5 weight recall. After my workout and drinking some water I ws 152.2 on that scale.

Getting a new cat tree today (hopefully). Someone is moving and getting rid of all their cats, and cat stuff, and they said they'd give me the tree. So now I can get rid of the ancient $100 ripped up, cheapy tree and replace it with this nice one. Even though I bought a new tree a while back for $300, I kept the old $100 tree and the cats do use it. This one is supposedly worth $400 (haven't seen it yet) and will make a nice addition to the house. Cats can never have too many things to climb. :)

My co-worker is going to get it as I type, and supposedly it will be waiting for me when I get home. (I gave Brad my keys and my bus pass. He's supposed to bring them back to me later tonight.)

I'm so excited about my new toy. I gave it and the hymnal I had to bring to Brad to take to my home - that much less to carry when I get off tonight.

Money's still tight so for the next two weeks I'll buy only what I need to eat - bread, meat and cheese for sandwiches, some kind of meat and veggies for my main courses, and berries (whatever's on sale, most likely strawberries). I can't even really afford this, but I gotta eat.

Wednesday, June 22, 2005

Breaking my plateau

Down a 1/4 pound today so 152 even. Hopefully I've broken through the 152.25 plateau I've been at for the last 5 or 6 weeks.

TOM came for a visit, so I'll probably see 150 the end of the week. This Sunday is the gay pride parade so I ain't going near SF. It will be impossible to get to City Church and I don't have to work overtime this week, so I'm planning to go swimming.

I'm thinking of buying a cheap $11 scale at the drugstore and use that until I save enough money to get a nice digital one that does body fat. I really want to track my weight daily on a graph and get a better idea of my ups and downs. I'd probably step on it 10 times a day, lol, but only my morning after-pee weight would count.

Worked out for an hour doing elliptical, walking, and the bike. Then 15 minutes of weights and crunches and such.

Cramps have kept me from being too hungry so far, but two Ibuprofin and a ThermaCare have done a lot toward helping me feel better and giving me my regular appetite back.

Kerlands mentioned fried pork skins. I picked some up. I should have got the regular. The spicy is TOO spicy. They are all fat and protein and NO carbs. And better than potato chips! Yum!

Hoping to go to the gym tomorrow.

Place your pin!

Step up people, and tell me where you're from. Click the guestmap button on the left (the upper button) and place your pin in the map. Only one person has done this so far (and thank you, Makani). :) So come on everyone else!

Tuesday, June 21, 2005

My friend is going to die... :(

This is such a hard post to write. Last night my friend told me she is going to die. She lives up near Seattle and is such a sweet and gentle spirit. Her thyroid cancer is no longer in remission and she does not want to fight it again. She says she has a 30% chance of making it for 5 years.

She says she is ready to die, but I look at this through Christian eyes. Therefore, anyone who knows about Jesus and does not accept Him will not be in heaven. :( I didn't make the rules, but I do believe them, and they indicate that my friend is not as ready to die as she thinks she is. But how do I explain it to her without pushing her away?

Summer Solstice

Today's the summer solstice. Well, for the west coast of the U.S. it was actually 10:46 pm last night. Shortest night, longest day. And now the days get shorter. As a Pagan, the summer solstice was always tinged with sadness. The days stopped getting longer, started getting shorter. Fall was coming and summer felt half over.

I've always thought of the seasons really beginning on the "cross quarter" days. So, for example, summer began May 1 (Beltane) and ended August 1 (Lughnasadh), when fall began. This also followed the seasons where I live much more closely.

Even though I'm not Pagan anymore, I still remember the days sometimes. More and more I can forget them until they are past, but not always.

Hmmm...I've been feeling some faceless, nameless anxiety the last few days. Maybe this is why. If so, I should be fine tomorrow.

Nearing a size 8!

Still working toward that illusive size 8. The tried on a pair of stretch "just below waist" 8's today, and they are skin tight, but FIT! I need to lose more to wear them comfy,but if I lose the last 12 pounds I need to, they should fit GREAT!

For now I'm wearing my 10s with a belt because they are finally starting to get loose. Now if I can just stick to my diet, I might show a loss by next week.

Monday, June 20, 2005

I'm published - again!

My latest devotions are up. They begin June 26 and continue through July 30. Use the calendar on the right to navigate.

My favorite and most personal writing can be found the week of July 17-23. Forgiveness was a theme in my life last year, and continues to be a lesson that I just can't emotionally grasp. Intellectually I understand, but emotionally, I can't let go.

I enjoy writing these devotions because I always learn something, and see things in the Bible that I never knew were there.

Helping Hand

Well bleh. I got an e-mail from Andrew saying that he wanted to know if I'd write 2-3 weeks of devotions. I didn't see it for two days, but responded immediately when I did see it and said I'd be happy to write 2 OR 3 weeks. I can do 3. But today's Monday and no response back yet from him, so I guess he found someone else to do it? I need the money. Something must have happened because he asks people to only write once a year (and this would be twice), and to write an entire unit of devotions (4-5 weeks). Also he usually gives more lead time rahter than giving the assignment at the end of June and expecting the result by September 1.

My writing in the Helping Hand

I wrote the devotions for Unit 2 in the current quarterly. They begin here:

http://www.educatingchristians.org/Publications/DailyBibleMeditations/20050626
That is for June 26. Use the calendar at the right to navigate. My writing goes through July 30.

The most thought provoking week for me (and the one I learned the most from) was the one on forgiveness. Forgiveness was a major theme in my life last year, cropping up everywhere, including my paid work! July 17-23:

http://www.educatingchristians.org/Publications/DailyBibleMeditations/20050717
It is the most personal I have ever been in my writing.



On the same topic, I was asked to write again. I think they must be in a bind because they aren't giving me as much time to write as usual, and they are only asking me to write 2-3 weeks. A "normal" assignment is always 4-5 weeks. It is also the second time they've asked me to write this year and they like to spread things out and ask each person to write once per year. So it's odd. But I need the money BAD! I wrote back to the editor, saying I could do either 2 or 3 weeks, and am now waiting for his reply.

Sunday, June 19, 2005

Don't You Quit!

This is based on another poem. Author unknown for both (as far as I know). Below is the Weight Watchers version, but has applications for other diets. :)

Don't Quit
When you've eaten too much and you can't write it down,
And you feel like the biggest failure in town.
When you want to give up just because you gave in,
And forgot all about being healthy and thin.
So What! You went over your points a bit,
It's your next move that counts...So don't quit!
It's a moment of truth, it's an attitude change.
It's learning the skills to get back to your range.
It's telling yourself, "you've done great up till now.
You can take on this challenge and beat it somehow."
It's part of your journey toward reaching your goal.
You're still gonna make it, just stay in control.
To stumble and fall is not a disgrace,
If you summon the will to get back in the race.
But, often the strugglers, when losing their grip,
Just throw in the towel and continue to slip.
And learn too late when the damage is done,
That the race wasn't over and they still could have won.
Life-style change can be awkward and slow,
But facing each challenge will help you to grow.
Success is failure turned inside out,
The silver tint in the cloud of doubt.
When you're pushing to the brink, just refuse to submit.
If you bite it, you write it... But Don't You Quit!

Good-bye, Joan...

I'm late getting this up, but once again a network has cancelled one of the few good shows out there. After Touched By An Angel was cancelled, Joan of Arcadia replaced it for me, and now they are cancelling that! There are so few wholesome programs out there, especially ones that deal with matters of faith.

Here are some links:
http://www.usatoday.com/life/television/news/2005-05-17-cbs-schedule_x.htm
http://www.cbs.com/primetime/joan_of_arcadia/
http://www.joanofarcadia.com/
http://www.joanofarcadia.net/

Atkins helps diabetes patients

WELLINGTON, New Zealand, May 23, 2005 (United Press International via COMTEX) -- A study by New Zealand's Wellington Hospital indicates the high-fat Atkins diet helps diabetes patients lose weight and control the disease.

Full story here.

This sounds like common sense to me. Of course Atkins helps diabetes patients. Atkins is low carb and diabetics need to control their carbs.

Now if only my Dad would listen. :(

Weight Loss Gimicks

Click on the banner link below and check out this site. Be sure to take the little test on the right hand side.

Saturday, June 18, 2005

The Atkins' Diet IS healthy!

My blood test results:

Look at these numbers! My total cholesterol is up 15 points, but my LDL is down 14 points and my HDL is up 29 points! Triglicerides remained stable (and very low). My glucose was only 75, which partially explains why I got so lightheaded after my blood test (the other reason being my somewhat low blood pressure).

Test type.....my number....(previous #).....normal range

Lipids
Cholesterol...166...(151)...<200
Triglicerides...39...(38)...<150
VLDL...8...(8)...5-35
LDL...84...(98)...<130
HDL...74...(45)...>40
Cholesterol/HDL ratio...2.2...(3.4)...(this puts me in the "low risk" catagory for heart attack - anything below 3.5 is "low risk")

Comprehensive Metabolic Panel
Glucose...75...(90)...65-99
Urea nitrogen...13...(25)...7-25
Creatinine...0.8...(0.9)...0.5-1.2
Calcium...8.6...(9.2)...8.5-10.4
Sodium...138...(141)...135-146
Potassium...4.0...(4.4)...3.5-5.3
CO2...22...(21)...21-33
Chloride...105...(107)...98-110
Protein, Total...6.6...(7.2)...6.0-8.3
Albumin...4.2...(4.3)...3.7-5.1
Globulin...2.4...(2.9)...2.0-3.9
A/G ratio...1.8...(1.5)...1.0-2.5
Bilirubin, Total...0.5...(0.7)...0.2-1.3
Alkaline Phosphatase...38...(37)...20-125
AST (SGOT)...15...(12)...2-35
ALT (SGPT)...15...(12)...2-40

Thursday, June 16, 2005

Rain, rain, go away...

It's still raining. Still! In mid-June! I guess I didn't get Mother Nature's memo that Northern Calfornia won't be having summer this year. :-p I seriously hate this. I want warm summer weather. It is not supposed to rain in May here, much less June!

Curiously enough, my sister says Seattle's weather has been fairly good. I think somehow we traded with Seattle. They can take their weather back! If I wanted Seattle's weather I'd live there!

Wednesday, June 15, 2005

No gain from cruise!

Well, I guess I did okay on the cruise and it was mostly water retention from too many carbs. I only gained a teeny bit on the cruise. Well, TOM happened right before I left so I should have lost, but oh well. I've lost one month and will have to wait for the next TOM to see a new low. Next goal - to get to 150.

A co-worker here recently went on a cruise and came back 6 pounds heavier. He's already middle aged, overweight, huge belly, had one heart attack already, and he's just not willing to do what it takes. He won't stick to anything.

Anyway, the 5 pounds was all water and I've been peeing like a race horse since getting back on my diet and I was at 152.5 this morning. Certainly not a low, but a whole lot better than 157.5 just a few days ago.

Weight Issues

Ok, here I am on the lower end of 150. I'm hoping to make 150 after next month's monthly water weight loss. I didn't make it this last month because of the cruise. I gained 5 pounds of water from the cruise which I lost after getting back on my diet again.

I think I finally found a good weight to shoot for. I need to weigh between 133 and 147 for my height and bone structure. I think I will go for 140. That's pretty much the middle of that range. In fact, it's exactly the middle according to my calculator.

152.5 today, so 12.5 pounds to go.

Which Twentieth Century Pope Are You?

Pius XII
You are Pope Pius XII. You're efficient and
dedicated, but not very approachable.

Which Twentieth Century Pope Are You?
brought to you by Quizilla

Monday, June 13, 2005

Blood and water

Had blood drawn today for cholesterol and metabolic panels. The first vial didn't seem to be vaccuum sealed anymore and wouldn't accept blood. So he had to pull out the needle, get another vial, and stick me again. Bleh.

Afterwords and felt lightheaded and naucious, like I would faint and/or throwup. They gave me a garbage can and I coughed over it, but nothing came up. All I'd had to eat (which made me sick most likely) was one sip of coffee after the test was over. Then they put me in an empty exam room and let me lie on the table and gave me a little cup of water to drink. Pretty soon I could eat and had the meal bar I brought, and then I was able to get up and leave. I went grocery shopping, but took it very slow and leaned on the cart more than usual.

If anyone wonders if I'm a fat pig, the woman at the blood draw place asked me if I was pregnant. This was after the blood test, not before. My tummy sticks out so far she wondered if I was pregnant! So yes, I am fat.

I had blood drawn a year ago and didn't feel sick afterwards. Why now? I'm not diabetic so even though it was a fasting test my blood sugar should have been okay. Has been the times they checked it before (87 and 90 respectively, which are in normal range).

Anyway, that was my fun adventures. The sticks on my arm still hurt a little and I'm just trying to take it easy. I ate all my higher carb lunch stuff to see if that might help me feel better (my strawberries and my sandwich).

Saturday, June 11, 2005

Dying inside

I'm pissed. This is not good. I haven't been to any church (Sabbath or Sunday church) in two weeks because of vacation. I was REALLY excited about getting back to church today. But I was supposed to meet Anita at 9:45 and I forgot and thought it was 10, so she drove off just a few minutes before I got downstairs. My home phone wasn't working because I was online, but my cell phone should have rung. I tried to call her cell phone, but it wasn't working. And when she got to church and found out from Pastor Steve, whom I called, she wouldn't come back and get me. Too far I guess.

At any rate, I'm pissed, and doubly so because I had no control over whether her or my cell phone would work.

So now I have a whole day and nothing to do. I have half a mind to go to the gym and weigh myself and get more depressed. Might as well bunch all the bad stuff into one day.

:...(

I haven't been to church is 3 weeks! I need the fellowship.

Looks like I'll have to get up at 7 a.m. tomorrow in order to at least make the "late" service at City Church.

[goes off crying]

More on Star Wars

Here's some thoughts from Brian on Anakin, the Chosen One, the Sith, and the Jedi.

From: Pendell1    4:14 am
To: Sapphire Princess (Newbirth) unread

Couple points. 

I actually think Anakin WAS the chosen one.  He was supposed to fulfill the role of Nebuchadnezzar. 

Read Jeremiah 25:15-26.   Isreal at the time was completely corrupt, and so were the surrounding nations.  So God appointed Nebuchadnezzar (the king of Sheschach, or Babylon, in the prophecy) to serve the cup of wrath to all the surrounding nations and to Isreal. And when all of them had drunk the cup to the dregs, the king of Babylon would drink it too. 

I see this as a perfect parallel to what the Jedi experienced at Anakin's hand. The Jedi, like ancient Isreal, were at the height of their power -- and they had a beautiful temple. But like the ancient Isrealites, they had lost their way.  In their fear of the dark side, they had allowed themselves to forget the true source of their power, which is compassion. Love. 

Because of this, they had lost touch with the true Light, and they became blinded.   They were no longer aware of the Sith's moves, having lost their foresight to delusion and ASSUMING they knew what the prophecy meant when it meant something else entirely. 

Weeds do not grow in a well-tended garden. The reason Palpatine was able to flourish in the senate and subvert the galaxy as he did was because the Jedi had neglected their watch, fallen asleep, grown complacent and confused. 

As Nebuchadnezzar was to Isreal, so Anakin was to the Jedi -- an instrument of violence to throw down the old, corrupted order and to make room for a new order of Jedi, the one starting with Luke.  One that would remember it's basic principles. One that would try to SAVE those in darkness (like Anakin), not destroy them.

This is a clue that Obi-wan and Yoda never quite latched onto.  Luke had a better sense of the force than they did, for Luke never lost sight of the potential for redemption in his father, and worked for his restoration to the Light. Obi-wan and Yoda had completely lost this faith, and not only advocated that Luke destroy this man, but that they deliberately lied to try to trick him into this choice!  

As I said, the old Order had completely lost it's moorings.   And so Anakin was appointed to be an instrument of wrath, clearing away the old detritus that the Jedi order could be reborn anew.    Darth Vader swept through the galaxy destroying all the Jedi, and he continued to do so until *every last Jedi* of the Old Order was destroyed.  Not until Obi-wan and Yoda were safely in their graves did Darth Vader at last die.  He couldn't. Because if the emperor had been overthrown *at any given point* before this had happened, the Old Order would have re-asserted itself, and it all would have been for nothing. 

When the last of the Old Order had died, the purpose of the Sith was completed.  Now that they had successfully served the cup of wrath to all the galaxy, the time had come for them to drink the cup they had served to so many others.  And so at last Luke had the power and the ability to conquer Vader -- not through the raw, naked force of the Dark Side, but by love and compassion drawing him back to the Light.   And so Anakin, who had been driven to the Dark by the Old Jedi's lack of compassion (remember Yoda's counsel to Anakin in the temple when he was afraid for his wife's death?  It still makes me burn with anger!)  was drawn back to the light by the compassion and love of the new.  He was at last empowered to break the dark servitude he had been enslaved in for decades,  and overthrow his hateful master.   So both the Emperor and Darth Vader died that day -- the one by annihilation of the body, the other by the free choice of Anakin Skywalker to kill that part of himself.

And so Anakin fulfilled the prophecy of bringing balance to the Force. Not only had he successfully destroyed all the Sith, but he also destroyed all the Jedi as well, leaving the galaxy free to become a Republic under the guidance of younger, wiser Jedi.

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And more from the same person:

From: Pendell1    4:34 am 
To: Sapphire Princess (Newbirth) unread

Wanted to add one more thing. 

The novelization explains the whole "bring balance to the Force" thing. 

From the Jedi point of view,  the Dark Side always exists.  It's like a weed.   It doesn't matter whether the Jedi live or don't live. It doesn't matter if every Sith in the galaxy is dead -- still the Dark Side will flourish and grow again, because men (and aliens) are selfish, greedy, self-absorbed, self-centered. 

Evil always exists.  "Balance" happens when evil exists but is kept in check, by the government and by the Jedi.   If the galaxy is a garden, and weeds always exist, the garden is in balance when there are gardeners keeping the weeds in check, uprooting them so that healthy plants can live out their lives without being strangled or crowded out by self-seeking weeds.  There can be no better condition than "balance", because the utter eradication of evil cannot be brought about by human hands. It is part of human nature, and cannot die while humans live.

But when the instruments of Order THEMSELVES become weeds -- then the balance is decisively tipped to the dark.   When the gardeners pull up the healthy plants and allow weeds to grow, then the whole garden is in danger of becoming weeds.  The garden becomes a jungle.   This is what happened when the Sith took over. With the removal of the Jedi and the subversion of the Republic into an entity that actively fostered evil, the balance was badly upset.

Truth be told, the balance was ALREADY upset in Episode I.  The Republic was already fast becoming an agent of evil, due to it's corruption.  The Jedi, as I demonstrated in the last post, were nowhere near what they should have been in preventing the spread of evil.   The balance faltered, until it tipped so heavily that Republic became Empire, and the Jedi were destroyed. 

Anakin restored the balance not only by destroying the Emperor and the Sith, but also by destroying the Old Republic and the Jedi as well.

You see, it wasn't enough simply to kill the Emperor.  The Emperor (as we learn from the ROTJ novelization) was taking advantage of and furthering trends that already existed.  Even without Palpatine, The Old Republic was STILL corrupt and the Jedi were STILL blind.  Anakin had not only to destroy the Empire, but to destroy the CONDITIONS that had brought about the Empire in the first place. 

Had both Anakin and Palpatine died in Episode I, the Old Republic STILL would have become the Empire. It would just have taken longer.  It's corruption and the Jedi's blindness were great, and becoming greater. So great that sooner or later some evil man of power and purpose could take over the whole thing -- not because he was so strong, but because the immune system had utterly failed.  

Only when the last vestiges of the Old Republic were swept away in Ep. IV, and only when the last of the old Jedi had died in Ep. VI, was it possible for a New Republic and a New Jedi Order to arise, one that would start out far less corrupt than the old, and give the galaxy peace for another thousand years or so. For nothing mortal remains incorrupt.    

When this happened at last, the Sith had no more reason to exist. And so they were destroyed -- not by the power of Darkness, but by the power of Love and Compassion, two weapons that the Enemy does not understand at all, and thus cannot enter into his calculations.

That is why Palpatine died. He could not perceive compassion as anything but a weakness, and for all his foresight and his cunning and his immense power and his mighty battle station and the uncounted Imperial Navy he was undone because he simply could not perceive the real power and strength that lay in love. And so he was destroyed by a Father's love for his child.

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Could Anakin be the Chosen One of the prophecy? What do you think?

Cheating

Didn't do as bad as I could have I guess. The movie didn't quite work out as planned and I ended up having 2 hours to kill at the shopping center. So I decided to have lunch before the movie and checked out several places. I finally settled on a grill and had Caesar salad (picked out the croutons), and serloin beef with the french dip sauce. I figured the sauce would be very low in carbs. I also had two glasses of Merlot, and got a low carb burger to go. That will be dinner tonight. Then I got a single espresso as I forgot my vitamin B this morning so was more tired than usual. Should have gotten a double.

At the theater I had a medium popcorn and a package of the Russell Stover candy. After the Merlot I wasn't thirsty and didn't want to drink right before a 2 1/2 hour movie, so I just got water. I ate all the popcorn and all the candy, even after the lunch I'd had. :(

I'm so bloated and my size 10s are tight. I'm a total failure. :(

Friday, June 10, 2005

Two more thoughts

Forgot one other thing about the movie. Buzz' post on Adam and Eve reminded me. The chancelor is like Satan and Anakin like Adam and Eve. Yoda specifically and the cousel as a whole are like God. Anakin's downfall was believing the lie that there is more, than the Jedi are holding something back from him, that they do not have his best interests at heart. Like Satan with Eve, the chancelor gets Anakin to doubt the goodness of the Jedis; he gets him to believe that they are trying to hold him back from his full potential.

And the Jedi were, because we all have the capacity for both great good and great evil, and they wanted to protect Anakin from that forbidden fruit; they wanted his to only use the force for good. Just as Adam and Eve knew about good AND evil after eating the fruit, so Anakin chose to believe the chancelor and learn about evil so that he would be more powerful than any Jedi before, just as Satan told Eve she would be "like God."

Last thought, and not sure how it relates to God. I'll take any of your guys' thoughts on the subject. When Anakin turns to the dark side, he starts thinking in black and white absolutes. Obi-Wan tells him that is how a Sith thinks. The Jedi see all sides of things and tend to mould their actions to each situation. They kill when they have to, and spare when they have to (something Anakin was terrible at - he *always* did the wrong thing, killing when she should have saved and saving when he should have killed). Jedi generally don't kill; they save lives, yet it would have been right to kill the chancelor. Anakin only sees in black and white. How does this relate to our faith as Christians, or does it?
Didn't do as bad as I could have I guess. The movie, Dukes of Hazzard, didn't quite work out as planned (it wasn't playing anymore) and I ended up having 2 hours to kill at the shopping center and seeing a different movie, The Exorcism of Emily Rose. So I decided to have lunch before the movie and checked out several places. I finally settled on a grill and had Caeser salad (picked out the croutons), and serloin beef with the french dip sauce. I figured the sauce would be very low in carbs. I also had two glasses of Merlot, and got a low carb burger to go. That will be dinner tonight. Then I got a single expresso as I forgot my vitamin B this morning so was more tired than usual. Should have gotten a double.

At the theater I had a medium popcorn and a package of the Russel Stover candy. After the Merlot I wasn't thirsty and didn't want to drink right before a 2 1/2 hour movie, so I just got water. I ate all the popcorn and all the candy, even after the lunch I'd had. :(

I'm so bloated and my size 10s are tight. I'm a total failure. :(

Thoughts on Star Wars Episode III, The Revenge of the Sith

I was blown away! This was SUCH a good movie. I'm just sorry there won't be any more. I rented Episode 4 (the first one made) to make the continuity stong in my mind. But now it all makes sense: The Sith come to power in this one, as the remaining Jedi hide, and the next one starts with Luke and Leia grown up and is titled "A New Hope."

Anakin was supposed to furfill prophecy I see. But the Jedi did correctly guess toward the end that they may have misinterpreted the prophecy. As we the viewers all known, Anakin's child, Luke, is the Chosen One.

I find it VERY interesting how Anakin wound up becoming Darth Vader. He goes to the dark side to save Padme from dying in childbirth, as his dream told him would happen. He would do anything to save her. And yet, Padme does die in just the way the dream fortold.

Isn't it just like Satan to give us a means to get something we want (a wrong means), get us to walk down the path, even pledge ourselves to him, and then NOT give us the thing we sought after?

I just have one question. What DID Padme die of? The droid said she was healthy, but that she had lost the will to live. The chancellor told Anakin that Anakin had killed her with his anger. Which is right?

I have to say I cried when Anakin started going over to the dark side. And I really felt for Obi-Wan. All his dreams, his view of Anakin as the furfillment of prophecy, and his love for him as a brother - all that and he had to turn away, walk away as Anakin was on the verge of death. I sensed that gave him no pleasure. He was doing what he had to do, but, as he even stated, Anakin broke his heart. He had poured years of his life teaching this boy that growns up to become his enemy.

I respect Obi-Wan more after this movie than from any other. He has all the best intentions at all times, but sometimes he REALLY screws up. It is then that I recall the end of episode 6, when he appears to Luke with Anakin back at his side, and he is smiling. It's a reminder that even the worst mistakes will all eventually be put right. The friends turned enemies turned friends again. All is forgiven.

I think the final betrayal for Anakin was when Obi-Wan thought Anakin would die and walked away. At a time when he needed his friend, he was abandoned, and the chancellor was the only one left to pick up the pieces (literally). Now someone remind me, just as the chancellor killed his mentor, doesn't Anakin eventually kill him, way down in Episode 6?

The other thing that struck me is, after it became clear Anakin had turned from the light side, Yoda never told Obi-Wan "I told you so." I expected him to remind Obi-Wan that the counsel had told him way back in the beginning that he was too old to train. Maybe he felt responsible, too. At any rate, Yoda simply offers Obi-Wan more training under Obi-Wan's old master.

One man can change so much. If Obi-Wan had simply left Anakin alone and NOT trained him, Luke would have come along in time and been the Chosen One. Additionally, if Anakin had not saved the chancellor, the whole rest of the series would have been different. Because Anakin goes to the dark side, much suffering happens. To save Padme, he sacrifices anyone and everyone else. In the end, he loses Padme, too. He loses everything, including the only people that really cared about him.

In the end, there is hope, though. Leia is adopted to one family, and Luke to another. One question - who were the people who adoped Luke? I missed the quick dialogue where that was explained. And who was the man who took Leia? I don't recall him playing much, if any, part in the other movies. Who the heck is he?

Those are my thoughts. Star Wars lives!

Thursday, June 09, 2005

Movies - Revenge of the Sith

I remembered today that I haven't seen "Revenge of the Sith" yet, so I guess I'll go tomorrow. I wanted to wait until the crowds died down. I hunted down a couple theaters and found a matinee for $6 at 3:15 pm. The bigger theater has matinees at $8 (last matinee is 3:45 pm) and is further out, but has better amenities, including Russell Stover sugar free candy and one movie being digital (the one I want to see), which I'm told is great.

I can't count if I have popcorn, and popcorn is my traditional "theater" food, but I'll have the diet Coke and the sugar free candy. Haven't decided which theater I'll go to, but I'm leaning toward the larger one, both for what they have to offer, and because the smaller one, though closer, has super liberal politics that I don't support. They even put anti-war messages on their marquee. :-p I want to see a movie, not listen to someone's politics.

At any rate, no way really to count tomorrow and I'll be going to the movies. I always go on my day off so I don't have to worry about work and can go when I want.

Wednesday, June 08, 2005

What is Your World View?



You scored as Cultural Creative. Cultural Creatives are probably the newest group to enter this realm. You are a modern thinker who tends to shy away from organized religion but still feels as if there is something greater than ourselves. You are very spiritual, even if you are not religious. Life has a meaning outside of the rational.

Cultural Creative

69%

Fundamentalist

56%

Romanticist

56%

Existentialist

25%

Postmodernist

25%

Modernist

25%

Idealist

6%

Materialist

0%

What is Your World View? (updated)
created with QuizFarm.com

Tuesday, June 07, 2005

Lunch Blues, take 3

I finally gave in. The world was against my diet from the start and I just got back from vacation so one binge day won't kill me, so I went off the deep end and ate half of a medium pizza and an entire order of CinnaStix with the ooey gooey sugar dip. I'm stuffed and now I think I'm ready to get back to eating healthy. Tomorrow for sure and I won't leave half of lunch at home!!!

Lunch Blues, take 2

Crap. Scrap that idea. Subway has no wraps and no spinach for salads. I guess that means no dinner. They told me to go to the shopping center. Yeah right. I'm on the clock and it's a 20 minute walk each way. Like I can leave my post - NOT. And all the gas station has is hot dogs.

Crap. I still have 5 hours left. I wanted to eat. I'm only at 1400 calories for the day. I need 500 more calories.

Crap.

Lunch Blues

Well, I forgot half my lunch today. I forgot the whole thing and went back and grabbed my lunch bag and didn't realize I'd left half of it behind until later. So I guess I'll have to use my Visa check card at Subway and pay the surcharge to get enough food today. Bleh. I had a whole menu planned out, low in carbs and everything. But I've already eaten all the food I brought because I LEFT HALF MY STUPID LUNCH AT HOME! God, how stupid can I be? Guess I'll get a sandwich and a salad.

Monday, June 06, 2005

Back from cruise

All is well, and I am already unpacked with the suitcases put away. Just one bag of Princess memorabelia still sitting out. I have to be up early so I'll write more later, but I'm back, I'm okay, the trip was good, and I go back to work tomorrow. Looks like I have lots of errands this week, so it will take me a while to get back to the gym; might only make it once. Cats are fine, fish is fine. Still need to eat something and then get to bed. See you all later!