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


Quotes of the Day

"My father once chased after his own sister with a butcher knife."
-Blake McKinney

"Crap! I'd run 'em over, but pedestrians have the right of way."
-Juan Maclean

"Did we grab the faucet and put it with the rest of its kind? Good grief, that sounds like Land Before Time meets Beauty and the Beast."
-Yours Truly

posted by Bolo | 12:00 PM
0 speakage


If Can, Can...If No Can, No Can

This was the text Steak Sauce sent a little while ago:

Surfing Kewalos @ 3 with Andrew. U should come!

What a babooze...gotta love the Crew. Give a wave offering for me, boys :)

posted by Bolo | 8:22 PM
1 speakage


Twenty Questions

Little Miss Merrifield asks her Uncle Johnny all about...well...stuff. She does a might fine job of it, I might add!

posted by Bolo | 11:34 PM
0 speakage


Feeling Focused

Taken from Ryan Willbur, this sums up a lot of my feelings toward coffee at the moment:

The difference is that my focus has changed. I’m finding that I’m less concerned with what people are drinking at the coffee bar and I’m more concerned with what they’re drinking at home. If any of the punk-teenager still leaks out on bar, it’s probably because someone is asking me to grind a pound of coffee for them. You could call it my ‘new’ espresso on ice. More than ever, I’m excited to push more and more people into making better coffee at home.

posted by Bolo | 11:20 PM
4 speakage


He Digs It

posted by Bolo | 11:17 PM
0 speakage



During thunderstorm at work:

"Hey Petey, I'll give you ten bucks if you go outside and wave around a long metal pole."

"Ten bucks?"

"Ten bucks."



Maybe you just had to be there.

posted by Bolo | 11:40 PM
0 speakage


What's Your Name?

She's an awesome little girl, isn't she? Ridiculously cute and smart and downright lovable. Hard to beat that combo!

posted by Bolo | 11:37 PM
0 speakage


SMS Singleness

One of my single buddies sent me this text this afternoon...I, of course, felt compelled to share his thoughts with all of you:

I hate attractive 24 yr old teachers/sports coaches with a southern accent that wear jewelry on their ring finger.

Awesome :)

posted by Bolo | 11:16 PM
0 speakage


Uncle Johnny is Charming!

She knows what she's talking about. Yup!

posted by Bolo | 11:10 PM
2 speakage

Indelible Memories

Gonna go show Makana my "stamp"...awesome :)

posted by Bolo | 6:09 PM
0 speakage



According to Makana, the thing on my leg is a stamp. Moisan in his fedora...incarnate. We need some of those Vibrams. When you gotta go, you gotta go. So yeah, I'm in...I suppose that's a big deal. Mission accomplished, Butterworth the Younger. I need a haircut. Seriously, am I the only guy whose marital future is dreamed of or discussed by girls? I met little Stephen David Merrifield; awesome. Still don't know why that second brew on the syphon didn't draw down completely. We should rock on Tuesday. Brooks is singing to me at the moment. I get so tired of fighting sin sometimes...I'd give up coffee if I could go through the rest of my days without sinning...but I don't have to give it up, do I? That camel kiss was freakin' legendary. I love it when the "You and me?" story comes out. I'm on Year 4 and should be done with Year 7 by the end of the week.

posted by Bolo | 10:32 PM
2 speakage


A Coffee Tasting: Pau

My legs ache. My stomach is empty. My eyeballs want my eyelids to fall down over them. My hands are a little shaky.

And I'm really, really, really happy.

Hopefully, the dozen or so people that showed up feel the same way.

Perhaps tomorrow, I'll write more on what happened and how what happened happened, but for now, the lingering impressions of an event that's been several weeks in the making and completely finished less than an hour ago will have to suffice. I think people went away experiencing coffees in a way that left them satisfied yet wanting more. On top of that, I think there was an educational aspect to their experience that is going to prove long-lasting; in other words, indelible, hands-on learning took place.

For that, I'm very grateful. More later.

posted by Bolo | 11:47 PM
0 speakage

Decisions, Decisions

I told him I'm in.

posted by Bolo | 1:53 PM
2 speakage



In less than two days, I won't be the only Letoto child in the 'Ville. When I go to a wedding where I know only one other person, it's almost inevitable that my people-watching and fashionista tendencies become traits that team up to form a painful combination. That rain was crazy. Sleep...oh, how I love sleep. My motto for this evening: Have suit, will eat. My buddies the Hardisons went to Chicago and enjoyed the same Intelligentsia shop that I did...and they just told me that. Some guys daydream about a girl they have a crush on; I daydream about chasing down a plastic disc and brewing rare coffees over open flames. I'm gonna wear that jersey soon, Butterworth. I find it's so much harder to enjoy Jesus than it used to be...even though He's not on iota less enjoyable. Team Johnny 5 may have a few fans on Tuesday; I hope we rep it. Boss likes to call me at 3:30 AM more than any other time, I think. Bob and Justin totally pushed Over the Grave...too bad I missed the party. Perfect...forgiven...

posted by Bolo | 11:11 PM
3 speakage


A Coffee Tasting: Sharing to Teach

It's near 1:30 in the morning, and I've just finished up three of the batches that will be going towards Saturday's little event. As I bagged up the last of the batches, I realized why I chose those three, as well as the Ethiopian beans I roasted last week for single-origin espresso, to sit alongside the Gesha: I wanted to present coffees that were not merely quality coffees, not merely coffees I particularly enjoy, but coffees that were unique and utterly hard to find in this city. A big part of the reason I decided to do this little shindig in the first place was because I wanted to educate people, and not merely by them hearing me drone on and on and on about total dissolved solids and uneven extraction leading to unintended but delightful complexities and the near-supreme importance of good green sourcing and blah blah blah blah blah.


One of the best ways to teach is to let someone experience things for themselves. Simple concept, right? Strangely enough, I find it horrifically absent from the American educational system. Perhaps because its inclusion requires creativity and enjoyment and vulnerability.

But that's another blog post. I'm supposed to only write about coffee and Jesus here, right?

I think I've come to greatly appreciate the minute gains of cerebral understandings of what is causing coffee to taste the way it does. I suppose my point is that I'd hate to share some coffee and not share that appreciation. Make sense? I hope so. See you Saturday.'s almost 1:40.

posted by Bolo | 1:39 AM
0 speakage


Capturing What I Wrote

Well over a year ago, I wrote the following:

"How are you?" The variations of that non-threatening, traditional greeting are many, but the purpose is the same: to greet someone. But you know what? I find my answers severely...lacking. Rarely do I feel as though I've really answered the question. Sometimes, it's because I don't really want to tell that person how I'm doing. At other times, it's because I don't like the answer, even if I really want to gush my guts. At still other times, I find that I don't even understand the answer, or think that maybe the answer isn't valid for some reason.

Tonight, though, I thought about that question. What I find I really want to ask isn't, "How are you?" No, my question lies somewhere along these lines: "Are you enjoying Jesus? Are you believing the promises that are yes and amen in Him? What areas of sin do you see in my life that need to be addressed? Do you see Christ in me? What has the LORD been teaching you in these recent days and weeks?" In my head, those are the questions I hear. In my heart, those are the questions that burn.

So tell me...are you enjoying Jesus?

Less than a couple of months following that, I wrote this in a blog post that I'd written to my awesome friend Rich:

Rich...the following comes mostly from some thoughts scrawled down in my journal at some point last week. I hope this helps. At the very least, it's helped me to gaze upon the Savior more, which is something I desperately need. For that, I thank you.

In the story of Abraham and Isaac, the LORD makes very clear not only the impossibility of Isaac's birth, but also the precious value of the love that Abraham had for Isaac. Did he value his son any more than any other father in history? That's mere conjecture, but one cannot deny the circumstances he found himself in could only heighten his awareness of Isaac's precious value.

Man is, by his very finite existence, limited in his capacity to love. It is impossible for any one of us to love with unending passion and perfection; invariably, our affections heat and cool, often with no rhyme or reason. With this in mind, I think God stacks the odds in Abraham's favor: every creaky step, every sag and wrinkle, every quiet, lonely memory reminded him and Sarah both of the exceeding value of their son, the son of promise.

Yet, what was Isaac's purpose but to point to the ultimate, infinitely more precious Son of Promise, Jesus Christ? The circumstances Abraham found himself in were designed to make him all the more aware of the worth of his son, and to make clear to us the worth and love with which the Father views the Son. Any affection Abraham had for Isaac was but a cold shadow compared to the white-hot light of glory that, from all eternity, passed between God the Father and God the Son. The darkened storm that came upon Abraham's heart when he walked the road to Moriah was nothing compared to Light of the World being snuffed out upon the cross. In Abraham, we but dimly begin to glimpse the infinite pleasure the Father has in His Son...that God has in Himself.

This, at the very least, is a part of what I believe John Piper and Henry Scougel have inferred with their writings. The entirety of Scripture reveals, over and over and over again, a holy God making clear to sinful Man the worth and value of Himself. This, though Man does not think it so, is loving. That God uses lives like Abraham's to stretch and stir our sinful and finite hearts is all the more wondrous, as it is in a life like Abraham's that we can identify our own yearnings for love and to be able to love, shriveled and weakened though those capacities to receive and give love may be. It is the LORD's wont and wisdom to take a variety of circumstances, not least of which is Abraham's fatherly love for the precious son whom he longed for, and show petty Man that the Father loves His Son, has loved His Son from all eternity, and will love His Son for all eternity. This love is God-centered, not man-centered, and is central to His glory.

I suppose the reason I share the contents of both of these old posts is because they capture, at least in part, what's going through my heart these days. More specifically, they capture what I'd like to see and feel going through my heart.

posted by Bolo | 11:13 PM
1 speakage


Hello, Lovely

This, my friends, is one of two new Hario TCA-3 syphon brewers to grace my kitchen. The first two brews in this lovely machine were absolutely stellar, and I can't wait to continue to try it out in the coming days. There's a plethora of techniques and theories of syphon brewing out there on the web, just waiting to be employed by yours truly.

Heck yeah!

posted by Bolo | 9:57 PM
5 speakage



Just a few quick links. Coffee-related, naturally.

Read the comments...that's where the goods are really at. Of course, Jim's thoughts are pretty worthwhile, too!

I linked to this a couple of years ago, but you know what? It's a great primer on coffee, so I figured, why not?

Hopefully, I'll have a couple of siphon-style pots in here by the end of the week. We'll see.

posted by Bolo | 11:50 PM
2 speakage


Won't You Be My Neighbor?

Just got back in from a nice little evening over at the Gronotte household. They now live over on Preston Street, and to be quite honest, I love the fact that they -- along with many other Immanuelites -- are close by. Their boxes have yet to be unpacked, the house has a lot of work still to be done on it, but it already feels quite homely. All that to say that I look forward to many more evenings much like this one.

posted by Bolo | 10:23 PM
0 speakage


All Up In Your Grill

posted by Bolo | 11:40 PM
0 speakage


A Coffee Tasting: Menu

Just about 24 hours ago, I was in the middle of roasting some dry-processed Ethiopia Idido Misty Valley. Four batches, each one weighing 227 grams pre-roast, to be exact. The problem with that? I had only planned on roasting two batches but had screwed up the middle two batches.

I felt quite persnickety about the whole thing, I did. I needed to wake up for work in the morning, and really, would the two degrees of difference really matter? Well, yes. Roasting for espresso, especially single-origin espresso, seems to be quite an unforgiving endeavor, and I wanted to get it just right, you know? These two batches were to be combined and set aside to be pulled as espresso shots that would be turned into cappuccinos, creations of milk and espresso that would sing with dense, creamy berry notes and swirl with hints of chocolate and fruit cocktail.

So yes, it mattered.

Two extra roasts later than planned, I finished my roasting session for the evening, content in the notion that I didn't stop until I was satisfied with the finished product. Those intoxicating cappuccinos will be the proof.

posted by Bolo | 11:58 PM
0 speakage


Open Letter

Dear 30 Year-Old Self,

In approximately one year, when another silvery-white hair or five will have gained greater prominence on your head and you only-kind-of-jokingly begin to look for the phrase, "Inflate to 90 PSI Max" stamped onto the side of your waist, you will hopefully have adopted and followed-through on at least one of the following mid-year resolutions: stretching more thoroughly and regularly; eating a little less cinnamon ice cream from Homemade Ice Cream and Pie Kitchen and running a little more; getting to bed before midnight; and calling your mother at least...well...just call her, darn it!

I do realize that the likelihood of you doing all of those is quite laughable, which is why I, your 29 Year-Old Self, am hoping that you will have accomplished at least one. I leave it at that. No more, but hopefully, no less. My tight right hamstring and wind-sucking respiratory system are in league with my circulatory system -- which seems to be threatening to go on strike -- to get you happier, even if it means my temporary misery. Regardless of my body's grumbling, you, at the very least, should have learned to call your mother.

I suppose that's really my responsibility, though, isn't it? Darn.

Your 29 Year-Old Self

posted by Bolo | 9:44 PM
0 speakage


"...and this I know with all my heart, His wounds have paid my ransom..."

Sometimes, I feel more daunted by God's mercy than relieved by and grateful for it. It's a good sign I'm not understanding it well, and I need to gaze at God's mercy through Christ more.

posted by Bolo | 7:45 AM
0 speakage


I'm Getting in Trouble For This

I can't help but think that my little nephew looks like a little Mexican Todd Thomas. Hah!

posted by Bolo | 8:45 PM
1 speakage


Links of the brown and tasty variety. Not a lot of crema today, though.

Sweet read.

It's heretical, but it's Jim Hoffmann, so it's gotta be all good, right? Right!

In anticipation of the 20th of June, I give you a chase like no other.

He may not have the greatest taste in coffees -- that's why he's a professional in another field -- but at least he demonstrates his taste with such...uh...taste.

How brown is too brown?

Cool idea. Literally. Brings to mind UB40's Cherry Oh Baby. (Strange word associations...that's one really good reason as to why you shouldn't blog while half asleep.)

More anticipatory fodder to feed the fervor!

Pour over me. Hmmm...isn't that a song or something? Well, this isn't a song, that's for dang sure.

Talking to me while I roast is like talking to someone while they sleep. Actually, the sleeping person probably responds with greater alacrity.

posted by Bolo | 7:28 PM
0 speakage


Johnny 5: Week 3

Totally knocked a kid in the face with my hand on my follow-through on one of my backhand throws tonight. Yeah. We went on to lose that game, even with our cheer of, "Raymie's fat!" I got broken on a nasty score. Again. And we also lost the second game. Yeah. Another loss. But you know what? We're playing better disc at this point than we were in week 1, so I'm happy with our team as a whole. Both losses were tight, and both losses came on heart-breaker, last-second points. Oh well. We'll come back stronger next week, right?

posted by Bolo | 11:38 PM
0 speakage



Sometimes, the things you receive over the phone are just worth repeating.

"Toto was the name of the company that made the toliet i just used..."
-Kristy White

"I am neither nightclub nor hitwoman. I have no List."
-Catherine Huffman

"Ahaha u are the king of man pretty"
-Jessica Cogar

"Yes! I made u speechless!"
-Amanda Edmondson

"we are on our way... amanda says to be outside waiting with your backpack like you're waiting for the school bus"
-Lauren Carpenter

"haha I just realized that my google was logged in as sara kandt--- I've been chatting with you but I bet you thought it was sara!!"
-Lauren Carpenter

posted by Bolo | 10:43 PM
0 speakage


That'll Preach!

There's really no need for explanation here. Just know that if you know either Lance Limanti or Ryan Fullerton, watching this video is critical to your enjoyment of life. Heck, even if you don't know them, just watch it.

posted by Bolo | 12:04 AM
0 speakage



I'm back in the 'Ville. I wasn't really gone, but...well...I'm back. Yeah.

posted by Bolo | 6:37 PM
0 speakage


@Coldplay in Cincy

posted by Bolo | 2:17 AM
0 speakage



Jeremiah 33:6 - 9
"Behold, I will bring to it health and healing, and I will heal them; and I will reveal to them an abundance of peace and truth. I will restore the fortunes of Judah and the fortunes of Israel and will rebuild them as they were at first. I will cleanse them from all their iniquity by which they have sinned against me, and I will pardon all their iniquities against me and by which they have transgressed against me. It will be to Me a name of joy, praise, and glory before all the nations of the earth which will hear of all the good that I do for them, and they will fear and tremble because of all the good and all the peace that I make for it."

Jeremiah 33:16
"In those days Judah will be saved and Jerusalem will dwell in safety; and this is the name by which she will be called: the LORD is our righteousness."

Almost every time I read Jeremiah 33 and get to verse 16, I keep thinking I'll need this massive, over-sized name tag so I can fit "the LORD is our righteousness" on it. I'm serous. I'd feel stupid walking around with that thing, but it would certainly help to remind me of what I seem to forget the most: that the LORD is indeed our righteousness, and not merely in a way that's far-off and mystical, but so that that becomes my name, my very identity.

posted by Bolo | 7:26 AM
0 speakage



Rule of thumb: Funny glasses -- the sort that distort your eyes and whatnot -- always look funnier on Asians. Seriously.

posted by Bolo | 10:15 PM
1 speakage

Oh Gosh

My tongue is currently undergoing spasms caused by an overload of unrelenting flavor: deep currents of chocolate, cherries, and hints of vanilla and oak. Seriously.

posted by Bolo | 9:24 AM
0 speakage


Johnny 5: Week 2

Your favorite LUFA Summer League team, Johnny 5, has found a theme song: Build Me Up Buttercup. Don't ask why or how, it just is, okay? As for how we did on the field, well, Joe put it best: we got our loss out of the way! We split tonight, winning the first one in another come-from-behind dealio, then getting blitzed and Blatzed -- by Ben Blatz and company, of course -- by the dudes and dudettes in orange. No worries, though, 'cause we'll come out the stronger for it. We're just buildin' 'em Buttercup!

posted by Bolo | 9:32 PM
0 speakage


Cup of the Morning

Ethiopia dry-processed Birbissa. Fruit. Bomb. Bomb of fruit. Fruit falling from the sky onto my tongue. Explosions of fruit. Fruit explosions. Tongue hijacked by fruit. Fruit attacking my tongue in all the right ways. Dang, that's wonderful. Best cup I've had all month.

posted by Bolo | 11:29 AM
2 speakage
Free Hit
Dell Coupons
Blogging Buddies
Old School
Bug Me