Smeagol is Free!
A hermitudinal view of...stuff...



I don't ever again want to be informed that Mr. Jeffrey Maguire is meditating on the lint in his navel. Just the Bunches is genius, Post. So what if I like cheap pop? Sue me. I need a hair cut, but, strangely enough, I don't feel like cutting it at the moment. She's here, she's wonderful, and she works incredibly well with me...even if it's been just one roast. One week and Fall League starts up...sweet deal. Poor Moon Pie. SDSU on Saturday, but I'm nervous about it. Speaking of Saturday, there's still that little shindig in the morning, isn't there? Chats with Matt are rare, but dagnacious they can get a guy excited about coffee! One month, man, one month.

posted by Bolo | 11:31 PM
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Fall Flair

Earlier today, I made this my Facebook profile pic. Fall is on its way, and like many other residents of the 'Ville, I'm looking forward to it. Too bad it's followed by Winter, you know? Bummer.

This particular shot exudes so much of the vivacious color and crispness of that awesome time of year. In case you're thinking this looks familiar, it has indeed been posted before with a handful of my other favorites. Yup...I dig it.

posted by Bolo | 12:34 AM
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Turning Trimethylxanthine Tasty

The Five Dubyas: Coffee junkies. A coffee roasting at home workshop. The sixth of September at 10 in the morning. My place. As for why...why, read on.

Here's the lowdown: I've had a handful of people over the past year ask me what the deal is with roasting coffee at home. Over the course of that year, I've learned a lot about coffee in general that has been incredibly helpful and insightful. In fact, I really do feel as though I'm much more knowledgeable now than when I first started, but along with that confidence comes the assurance that there's much more that I don't know and probably will not ever know. Thus, I've decided to take you on that same journey, but in miniature. At the end of this, I'm hoping that you'll all feel as though you're far less of a coffee aficionado than you thought you were, wanting to be even more of a coffee junkie than ever before, yet realizing that you can explore the wonders of the coffee globe for the rest of your life and still see but a tiny portion of it.

We'll focus on roasting coffee at home: the technicalities of roasting, chemically and economically; what roasting involves as a sensory experience, from the roaster to the mug; and the joys of roasting...the journey, if you will.

Please bear in mind that this is not meant to teach you how to be a barista (of which I'm pretty stinkin' ignorant), nor is it going to teach you how to be a commercial/professional coffee roaster. Go talk to Matt and Brian for that...I'm just a junkie teaching other junkies how to get their fix ;)

Note: This was sent out as an invite on Facebook. If you didn't get one, it's not because I don't necessarily want you there, but just didn't get one. That's life. Feel free to come, just let me know. Dig? Cool.

posted by Bolo | 2:34 PM
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Coffeeing Around

This is what I told Jeesh just now:

"Speaking of some dry-processed Koratie, I'm sipping on some right now...roasted juuuuust out of 1st crack to a nice and fruity deliciousness. The chocolate overtones come through at first, and now it's beginning to mellow out and open up to a lush field of berries and tropical fruit. Dee. Freakin'. Lish."

posted by Bolo | 2:23 PM
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This Name is No Game

Jeremiah 33 tells us that God has a special name for those whom He loves: the LORD is our righteousness. That name, without a doubt, seems at the very least to be cumbersome and lacking imagination. What I mean to say is that there seems to be an obtuse and overly-obvious naming practice being employed here, one that smacks of outright oddity, even for biblical standards.

I think that's the point.

Our care group met this past Sunday evening. As I told Boss and Mikami later on, the Lord had been graciously showing me throughout the week that I had been and was in the midst of still fighting against unbelief and legalism. Those are terms that are pretty common in the bible college and seminary vernacular, terms that have a tendency to applied to other people. The example I gave the care group, however, made me realize that I, without a doubt, qualified as one of those other persons. Say someone asks me how I'm doing. In answering honestly, I'll generally take a second or three to quickly do a mental check of my, prayer, small sins, big sins...I'll then give a response based upon how I feel I'm doing. Sounds fine, right? I mean, I'm answering honestly, aren't I?

Not really.

What I'm leaving out is what God sees in my day: His Son. You see, I tend to evaluate how I'm doing based upon what I've done. This may sound well and good and obviously what the Christian life is based upon, but that's precisely the point of God's word to us: it's not.

The word of the LORD through Jeremiah gives a ridiculously clear insight into the difficulties God's people are plagued by in understanding just what it means to be God's chosen people. The verses surrounding the nomenclatural declaration in Jeremiah 33 are filled with God's promises to restore and bless a people, His people, that have sinned greatly and have no hope of changing themselves. Just in case they don't get this, and they don't, He skips the giving of a name and goes straight for the significance and meaning: "I am your righteousness, not you!"

Don't overlook this as I tend to. If the general populace of Kentucky started calling me Brown-Skinned and Slanty-Eyed One, I wouldn't be offended, but I do think there would be no way I'd forget what made me different from most of the people around me. If anything, even though I'm already well-aware of those outward differences, those differences would become sharpened toward a painfully obvious point.

I told my care group that I forget the cross. In giving His people such a strange name, God is giving us yet one more way to remind us who we are in Christ. That name, after all, shines forth quite bluntly that we are righteous in Christ and not ourselves; the practical implications for this are many. As I told my care group that evening and Boss and Mikami later that night, I really want to see Jesus, and I really want to see my life in light of Jesus' cross. I'm tired of feeling like I have to earn God's love, and I long to embrace that which He longs to make obviously clear: He is my righteousness.

posted by Bolo | 7:42 AM
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Cup of the Morning

In my trusty Sunergos mug is a small portion of the dry-processed Koratie I've been enjoying for some weeks now. This particular roast is from about four days ago, so it's settled into the resting period quite nicely now. The grind was a fair bit finer today than I usually make it, but the brewing time in the press was shortened to accommodate that fineness. All that said, this cup is...different. The fruit is there, but it's more mellow than I was expecting, not bright and soaring like I suspected it would be. The mouthfeel is clean, perhaps even a touch dry like a good beer or wine. What overwhelms me is the rustic aroma...this has always been present in my roasts of this bean, but it's much stronger right now. Wow.

posted by Bolo | 10:44 AM
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I'm giving a print of this away today. It was shot last November, and I definitely dig it. Most people, it seems, have to stare at the print for a few moments before they realize what it is. It's kind of fun to look at them while they figure it out.

posted by Bolo | 5:20 PM
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"She used to want to keep you or someone like you in her closet to advise her daily.... like a fashion Magic 8-Ball of sorts, but slightly odder."
-Catherine Huffman

posted by Bolo | 10:10 PM
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I've been sitting here for the past forty minutes, trying to clear out the stem of this pipe with a wire hanger and regular-sized pipe cleaners. I'd cut the stem, except I still have visions of sitting on my porch doing my best Gandalf impression.


posted by Bolo | 11:43 PM
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"Please don't puke; I'm a sympathy puker."

-Stephanie Criser

posted by Bolo | 1:49 PM
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He's on his way...

...well, not really, at least not yet...

...but he's gonna be on his way, so you'd better watch out...

...'cause he has a way with people, he really does.

posted by Bolo | 10:52 PM
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Stellar is my word of the week. The one good thing about throwing out your back is that girls are slightly more likely to bring you food...only slightly, and that's just because I'm John Letoto...make of that what you will. Yes, you know I'd do the periwinkle again if I felt like it, Boss. Katie Faye Vaughn is stellar...see, I can use it in a a sentence. Much as I'd like to say that I'll go to the early service, I know I'll not be up in time for that. Painkillers and muscle relaxers are also stellar. Two different cups of dry-processed Koratie today, both from different roasts, both quite delicious, both quite stellar. A first-ever roasting class at my place is now not just possible, but quite probable. Graeter's on a Saturday evening in August is stellar. I say go for it, can always take your adopted cousin so that can be amused.

posted by Bolo | 11:33 PM
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Cup of the Morning

There's a nice complexity to this cup of Harar this morning. A little fresh ginger in the aroma, a little syrupy fruit on the tongue; it's definitely a Harar, rustic and earthy. I wouldn't say it tastes earthy,, that would more likely be something Indonesian. There's a lot to like about it. I think, however, the cup will be over far too soon. Oh well. On to the next cup!

posted by Bolo | 10:28 AM
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Normal people don't have dreams where they tell others when and where to hyphenate words and phrases, do they? No, I didn't think so.

See, Mon, I'm a C! Maybe just a little know, Makana-sized :)

posted by Bolo | 7:08 AM
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Thoughts: Godward

Dave reminded me of the love of God the Father yesterday morning. He told me that he looks at his own son, the same son that has sinned in all sorts of ways, grieved his father and mother and will continue to do that and still more, and says to himself, "I love that kid." There's no holding back, no unrealistic expectation that his son will be perfect come morning, no need to conjure up a paternal love for his own child.

How much better, more perfect, is the love of God the Father for those whom He has already saved, those upon whom He places no unrealistic expectations for perfection, those to whom He has already granted the perfect righteousness of His own Son? It's much better...much better.

posted by Bolo | 6:24 PM
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Bossy Birthday

I was just telling Scott and Em the other night that I don't really remember the birthdays of my nieces and nephews any more, but I do remember those of my friends. Do I feel bad about that? No, not really. I mean, I have two nieces and six nephews, whereas I have...what...four friends?

Just kidding.

Kind of.

Anyway, all that to say, Happy Birthday, Boss! Too bad you're not here with me, or I there with you, 'cause then we'd...well...I dunno, do whatever is we would do. Love you, bro :)

posted by Bolo | 7:03 PM
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I'm wearing a headlamp on my head...right my apartment...using it, too. I love my church, I really do. I could really use a session with the Crew out at Kewalo's...big time. Speaking of the Crew, Mikami is buying tickets! The headlamp is incredibly helpful when nearing the end of a roast. Amongst her interests and passions, who knew that Katie Faye Vaughn would list nose-picking and eyeball-licking? Speaking of which, I find it immensely amusing that the Little People actually asked me if I'd ever really licked an eyeball. The HotTop may soon be on its way. I wonder what Juan would say if we actually put Debbie into the nursery? I told the Little People that while I don't think my tongue has actually made contact with an eyeball, it has tried valiantly to pry apart eyelashes and eyelids. I dig my espresso monkey shirt. The need to write is being stirred very vigorously within me. Mikami's ticket purchasing just went from the present-tense to the past-tense.

posted by Bolo | 10:43 PM
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News Bite

It's morning, folks, it's morning. I generally don't like mornings...they always wake me up. Gah.

posted by Bolo | 7:41 AM
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Cup of the Morning

In the mug is another batch of dry-processed Koratie, roasted just a shade past 1st crack, with not a whole lot of rest. The lack of body makes the lack of rest pretty evident, but the fruit flavors still "pop" on the tongue...pineapple and other canned fruits come to mind. After several more days of rest, I'll probably get some wild blueberry from this batch. Dee. Freakin'. Lish.

posted by Bolo | 9:20 AM
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According to my Google feed, Thomas Aquinas said, "There is nothing on this earth more to be prized than true friendship." I prize...I prize.

posted by Bolo | 8:16 AM
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Reese's Blizzard from Dairy Queen + John Letoto = Happy John Letoto

posted by Bolo | 11:10 PM
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Crazy Cute

I don't care what you say, my niece is still cuter than your niece. I stole this picture as proof. Check out the rest here.

posted by Bolo | 7:43 AM
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Thoughts: Those Revellers

Time spent with the Revell brothers usually consists of several elements, not all of which must be present, but most of which usually are: good food; coffee; a smoke; ice cream. Seriously, when did Mr. R turn into John Revell? Yes, yes, we know you need it in your mug...just go and get it. Hah...they were holding hands! I suppose we're not quite yet at two years, are we? Supposedly I don't have any tattoos, have never met Debbie Revell, don't surf, and am 22. I'll ask you later...maybe. That Americano wasn't bad, was it? I ate those plate of pork chops and potatoes and had the plate of wings on the side, but dang...I've kinda got the munchies. I still wish I had been there for that public roasting...singlehood noted, I'm sure. That image of Young Revell huddled over his Scrabble tiles is suddenly stuck in my head. A smoke with the Sage sounds like a deliciously good time. Speaking of deliciously good times, Maryland comes to mind.

posted by Bolo | 12:56 AM
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I wrote this over a couple of years ago, and as I read it this morning, it encouraged me, not only because of its content, but because I see that I could have written it this morning:

In pondering where the LORD has led me these past weeks, I am consistently reminded that He is not at all ashamed of loving His chosen people, even though we do things to grieve Him. Let me say that again, albeit somewhat differently: despite the fact that I often do things to grieve Him, He is faithful to show me even greater dimensions of His grace in such a way that I am taught over and over again that He loves me, and that that love is shameless. This great love is a delight to Him that is boundless. How can we know this? The price He paid was without measure; the price was Jesus.

posted by Bolo | 9:53 AM
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Cup of the Freakin' Century

The worst part about that cup of dry-processed Koratie? It wasn't enough. The blueberry was absolutely ridiculous! Jeesh said it just hit him in the face, but Brooks said with his eyes and with his mouth, "It was wild!" I, on the other hand, could only lament my sad fate: an empty cup.

posted by Bolo | 6:19 PM
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Not that I'm a pet-owning kind of guy, but I do think being able to name animals after elves and coffees would be pretty freakin' sweet. Next Tuesday isn't going to get here fast enough...hurry it up, O'Neal. Blatz and I shared an Olympic Moment...kind of sounds funny, but we'll beat down anyone who laughs. Panamanian Esmeralda Gesha? Dee. Freakin'. Lish. Not only was I recently proclaimed a paragon of paradox, but it was observed earlier today that I can turn a two-minute conversation of little to no significance into a week-long Facebook posting frenzy. LaRue, you're ridiculous. I think yelling "Aurë Entuluva!" as a sort of frisbee battle-cry would be awesome, but I'm not certain that anyone would really get it. Or should, for that matter. Like Butterworth said, Obama only wishes he could do what Michael Phelps did tonight: unite Americans. Apparently, my image is being used on a shirt.

posted by Bolo | 11:56 PM
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Isaac Watts' words seem very, very fitting this morning:

Laden with guilt and full of fears,
I fly to Thee, my Lord,
And not a glimpse of hope appears,
But in Thy written Word
The volumes of my Father's grace
Does all my griefs assuage
Here I behold my Savior's face
In every page

posted by Bolo | 7:47 AM
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Mr. Mikami, here's a little more incentive for October. yours truly isn't enough, right? ;)

posted by Bolo | 12:43 PM
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Life's Happenings

Sam Lee once told me that the people he'd known in college, the ones that were friends he considered near and dear to him, were people, given ten or fifteen years, that suddenly weren't so close anymore. Some people graduate, some get married, some get jobs, and others simply stop keeping in touch. In short, life happens.

Sometimes, when people leave, it hurts. A lot. Others, not so much. Sometimes, you think someone is just going to be white noise in the soundtrack of life. Sometimes, that someone becomes an old favorite you keep going back to, even if you don't know why.

That Butterworth guy used to be the little brother I'd pick on, but only just enough to let him know that I kind of liked having him around. For some reason, despite my myriad and unfathomably diverse shortcomings, he still wanted to be my friend.

I think I lucked out.

When we hung out today, I found myself missing his company. Yeah, I know, it's ironic that that happens while with someone, but for those that have seen friends come and go, you know exactly what I mean. So tonight, after going our separate ways, I came back and read about his little moment in the spotlight, that moment I idiotically missed. Somewhere along the way, he stopped being just another face in the crowd. Somewhere along the way, I realized that Pablo had become one of those people that I really hope will defy Sam's logic. Sure, life will happen, but I'd much rather be there with him when it does.

posted by Bolo | 12:57 AM
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He Laughed!

When I spent that first night reading The Hobbit, it wasn't at all like a new world was unfolding before me. No, it was as if an old world, an old but favorite friend, one I knew but, quite foolishly, had forgotten all about, was suddenly found once more.

When Mon gave me The Fellowship of the Ring for my birthday, I was in love. I clearly remember asking her, "Is Gandalf really dead?" and hoping she would tell me he was still alive, but dreading to hear her say otherwise.

When Merry and Pippin met up with Strider, Legolas, and Gimli in The Two Towers, I nearly clapped in delight; indeed, I still do, at every reading.

When I first read in The Return of the King about the horns of Rohan blowing wildly, I think I felt a tear slide down my cheek. That part, more than any other, is the one I cherish most in all the many chapters of The Lord of the Rings.

Yet, much though I enjoy those books, I must confess, not one of them is my favorite Tolkien work. Indeed, this little excerpt, which comes from The Silmarillion, is very largely responsible for my continued reading of that magnificent -- and favorite -- piece of Tolkien literature:

But Thingol looked in silence upon Lúthien; and he thought in his heart: "Unhappy Men, children of little lords and brief kings, shall such as these lay hands on you, and yet live?" Then breaking the silence he said: "I see the ring, son of Barahir, and I perceive that you are proud, and deem yourself mighty. But a father's deeds, even had his service been rendered to me, avail not to win the daughter of Thingol and Melian. See now! I too desire a treasure that is withheld. For rock and steel and the fires of Morgoth keep the jewel that I would possess against all the powers of the Elf-kingdoms. Yet I hear you say that bonds such as these do not daunt you. Go your way therefore! Bring to me in your hand a Silmaril from Morgoth's crown; and then, if she will, Lúthien may set her hand in yours. Then you shall my jewel; and though the fate of Arda lie within the Silmarils, yet you shall hold me generous."

Thus he wrought the doom of Doriath, and was ensnared within the curse of Mandos. And those that heard these words perceived that Thingol would save his oath, and yet send Beren to his death; for they knew that not all the power of the Noldor, before the Siege was broken, had availed even to see from afar the shining Silmarils of Fëanor. For they were set in the Iron Crown, and treasured in Angband above all wealth; and Balrogs were about them, and countless swords, and strong bars, and unassailable walls, and the dark majesty of Morgoth.

But Beren laughed. "For little price," he said, "do Elven-kings sell their daughters: for gems, and things made by craft. But if this be your will, Thingol, I will perform it. And when we meet again my hand shall hold a Silmaril from the Iron Crown; for you have not looked last upon Beren son of Barahir."

posted by Bolo | 11:56 PM
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Peace Out, Yo

This old dude got posted last summer, but he deserves another go. I mean, if this doesn't make you laugh, or at the very least, smile, I don't know what to tell you.

posted by Bolo | 10:46 PM
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The French Press is dead. Well, the latest one. It lasted nearly a year, pressing out somewhere around six hundred or so batches of delicious buzz buzz brew. It was a good press, it was. I'll miss it, I will. I already miss it, in fact. Bye bye, French Press, faithful friend, I shall miss you so.

posted by Bolo | 8:46 AM
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What I Dig

This is gonna sound weird, but I dig the way the light hits their pants. That is all.

posted by Bolo | 5:39 PM
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I feel a distinct disconnect for having not seen one iota of the Olympics thus far. When you're a dude and you're tagged in pictures on Facebook, a furrowing of the brow is to be expected when all you see in those pictures is a distinctly female human with a frisbee in her hands. Esmeralda Gesha is here! Aren't Mr. and Mrs. Winn in God's Country? It's nearly 7:30 in the evening, and I'm just now enjoying my first cup of coffee for the day. Remember, if you crash and burn, don't blame me for poor wingmanship. It's almost scary how much the girls of IBC want to play frisbee now...good scary, though. When was the last time you chewed your coffee? There is only one Prime Minister of Parts & Pineapples. I need another session of play-by-play, Boss. How was the conference, 'Drew?

posted by Bolo | 7:29 PM
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I'm Tracking

I'm waiting for Esmeralda Gesha, and UPS tracking doesn't have anything better to say than "OUT FOR DELIVERY". Gah!

posted by Bolo | 2:18 PM
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"This entire conversation could be a doctoral thesis in abnormal psychology."

-Iverson Warinner, commenting on the dialogue taking place between him and yours truly

posted by Bolo | 1:11 AM
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Coffee Crazed

For those of you who think I'm a wee bit obsessive about those roasted beans and the beverages they produce, I want you to read the following bits and pieces of my thoughts on coffee, as my aim is to further my claim that I'm not just a wee bit obsessive about coffee, but that I'm incredibly and ridiculously in love with coffee.

In its purest and best forms, coffee should not need additives, such as milk or sugar, in order to be enjoyed. If anything, such additives mask the naturally-occurring sugars which are present in a high-quality, well-roasted bean, and were originally used to hide defects in lesser-quality beans or bad roasts. In the end, a good cup of coffee ought to be able to stand on its own, without the aid of additives, and will have flavors that are downright enjoyable.

Get a good grinder. If anyone is serious about good coffee, they'll pay attention to their ability to grind freshly-roasted coffee to an even grind that is appropriate for whatever brewing method is being employed. The reason for this is that over or under-extraction will occur if coffee is not evenly ground, which can result in sour or bitter flavors being extracted out of an otherwise perfectly good bean. What does a good grinder consist of? At the very least, start with a conical burr grinder. Be warned, however, as they can be pricey!

Chew your coffee. I'm serious. No, not the beans or the grounds, though this would be acceptable, too. When you sip your coffee, make sure it's cool enough to rest on your tongue, then actually chew on the coffee with your molars. As you do this, be sure to breathe in and out through your nose, paying particular attention to the scents you'll pick up as you breathe out. If what you're drinking is any good, you'll take notice. Trust me. If it's not, well, I didn't tell you to drink anything from the folks in the green aprons. Woops...low blow.

A good barista cares about what he or she is serving you, and he or she wants feedback. Tell the person behind the counter if the drink isn't up to snuff. Are the shots sour? Bitter? Did they nail the pull so perfectly that they can hang up their apron for the day and go home? Tell them, and they'll appreciate it. If they don't, they don't belong behind the counter.

A cup of coffee is best when hot, right? Not necessarily. Various flavors emerge as the cup cools, and quite frankly, many of the most vivid and pleasant flavors will be present once the cup proceeds from warm to lukewarm to downright cool. Seriously. Think of it this way: different temperatures bring out different flavors.

posted by Bolo | 1:05 AM
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Cup of the Morning

The dry-process Koratie had been the coffee du jour for some time, but I'd gone away from it in lieu of trying out some other roasts, particularly the wet-process Koratie. Quite happily, I'm back to it. I'm consistently struck by how much fruit surges through the senses from this little cup, especially at the lighter roast stages, as this one is. The mouthfeel even has a winey, dry finish, almost like I'm sipping on a wine or a beer. Wow!

posted by Bolo | 8:57 AM
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I find myself looking back and reading what I've written before as a source of encouragement. Tonight, my reading took me here, here, and here.

posted by Bolo | 11:04 PM
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A must-read for those who love diamonds. No, not those kinds of diamonds, silly.


Yes, those decimal points are in the right places.

Makes me wanna go out and play.

posted by Bolo | 10:45 PM
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Just Face It

posted by Bolo | 11:59 PM
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There's nothing quite like lots and lots of sleep after two days of lots and lots of sprinting in lots and lots of heat. I seriously hope his comeback isn't a circus, because if it is, and he doesn't do anything to add to the ridiculously legendary career he's already had, it'll just least he can't wear #45. As much as I don't want to know what that cheer really means, I'm kind of curious, too. I'd give a lot for a day with my nephews right now. If there's anyone alive that can tell me off the top of their heads the genealogical significance of the original Boromir, I'll be incredibly impressed. Greatly disturbed, mind you, but still incredibly impressed. I'm hungry. Brian Regan in a sermon, eh? There's nothing quite like seeing the goofy grin on Blatz's face after he catches that disc to end a tournament. Well, maybe it's the half-circle run with that goofy grin on his face. I called her last month...I should be good for another couple of weeks at least.

posted by Bolo | 2:52 AM
2 speakage



Oh. For. Six.


On the flip side, LouEVIL rocked out and took home the title in their hometown tournament, and it was quite pleasurable to watch from the sidelines and see some good, solid ultimate being played.

posted by Bolo | 6:25 PM
5 speakage



Oh and four. I wrote it like that 'cause it doesn't look so bad if it's not numerically recorded...gah. We stank.

posted by Bolo | 9:28 PM
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Hosea 3
Then the LORD said to me, "Go again, love a woman who is loved by her husband, yet an adulteress, even as the LORD loves the sons of Israel, though they turn to other gods and love raisin cakes." So I bought her for myself for fifteen shekels of silver and a home and a half of barley. Then I said to her, "You shall stay with me for many days. You shall not play the harlot, nor shall you have a man; so I will also be toward you." For the sons of Israel will remain for many days without king or prince, without sacrifice or sacred pillar and without ephod or household idols. Afterward the sons of Israel will return and seek the LORD their God and David their king; and they will come trembling to the LORD and to His goodness in the last days.

Almost two years ago now, I wrote these words:

It's an absolutely insane thing to think of Hosea's pain. I cannot imagine the bitterness and hopelessness God's commands must have stirred within his heart. Yet, how profound a purpose for his marriage! Hosea shared in Christ's sufferings in a unique fashion, foreshadowing the suffering and hope of the cross, making vulnerable the heart of the Almighty, revealing a depth of compassion in the shared suffering of unrequited love.

This summer, I was given much opportunity to ponder the love of God, namely, its nature, dimension, beauty, glory, and steadfastness. I would sit for what seemed hours, meandering through the height and depth and length and breadth of His love. I would ask God why He loved me, trying to make some sense of it all. What often helped was looking at the seemingly foolish love seen in Hosea: God chose to love us, and we're to accept it in all its infinite facets. We had no beauty to us, no merit to our actions, no righteousness in our hearts; we were truly the wife of harlotry.

In pondering the depths of God's love and the diverse manners He communicates that love to us, I'm always silenced by the beauty of His long-suffering patience. He does not merely wait for us, He suffers for His bride. The cost of pursuing and redeeming His bride is a cost we do not merit, a cost that He pays with hope and joy. Yes, Christ does indeed long with intense passion for the glorious revelation of His bride! Should we not do the same, knowing that He has changed us from the shameful adulterer to the one betrothed to Him in righteousness and faithfulness, never to turn again from Him to our former lovers, forevermore to live with Him as His beloved bride?

This morning, I feel quite keenly the pain and perspective of one of those characters: Israel. Just as Gomer was loved by a faithful husband who shamelessly shames himself to redeem her, so Israel has a faithful Savior who has borne all of my sin and shame. The irony is that it's so hard for me, just like Israel, to bear Him as such a Savior, such a kind, gentle Savior who redeems me and does not shy away from my wretchedness and continues to woo me back in my tendency to wander.

Thank you, LORD, for loving me.

posted by Bolo | 7:14 AM
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MegaDoLishUs: Who Caught That?

I'm still not sure who came down with that disc...

posted by Bolo | 6:22 AM
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Being Kevin Arnold

My wise thought for the decade: every guy has a Winnie Cooper. Mikami agrees with me on that one, so it's got to be true.

posted by Bolo | 10:43 PM
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Just Swell? No, Swill!

Come watch us play tomorrow and Sunday: Swill in the 'Ville '08

posted by Bolo | 9:29 PM
0 speakage

Many Meetings

You, Andrew, above all others, will appreciate what Josh Ryherd recently told me: "I asked Joshua Harris last month if he had ever met you, and he responded with a quizzical look on his face, 'I think so. Would he have given me a pineapple by chance?' " Actually, Jim would get a pretty big kick out of it, too.

posted by Bolo | 8:29 AM
2 speakage

Lit Up

More old stuff.

posted by Bolo | 7:52 AM
0 speakage
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