The Life of JaWS

A blog by Jason Sansbury

Thursday, April 12, 2007

I'm moving this show...

So I have decided to move this blog to a new place. You can check it out now here.

Monday, April 09, 2007

Sports Top 10

Here are a ton of random sports notes:
1. The Masters. Sometimes Tiger kicks the course around and sometimes it bites him and everyone else. No rain means crazy fast greens and a tougher course.
(Personal Masters moment: parking cars for Young Life at the Olive Garden and some kid getting practice badges from little old ladies and re-selling him. I believe our $3500 take for the afternoon shift still stands as a record! Gotta love cute, undersized 7th grade guys with business acumen.)

2. Joey Harrington as an Atlanta Falcon. Believe it or not, I like this move. Harrington suffered in Detroit for a long time with a bad team and now he will be in a good system, with a good QB friendly coach with a starting QB who tends to get himself hurt. Joey Harrington for Pro Bowl 2009! (Sorta)

3. Can I tell you how much I am going to freak out if the Hawks don't have their lottery pick? Unless it is one of the top two (I'd take Durant over Oden) then Phoenix gets it just to make the Boris Diaw trade look even better for them!

4. I find myself sometimes drawn to NASCAR races. And occasionally I find myself stopping and listening to country music. Tennessee is really like rubbing off on me in bad ways. If I moved to Chicago, would I become a big fat guy who eats sausage pizzas? Oh wait...

5. Pac-man Jones won't be a Titan this year. Now, if he was Q-bert Jones, then that is a different deal entirely...(And in 10-12 years are we going to have some guy named Master Chief Smith playing QB?)

6. Living closer to Kentucky has meant I have a new appreciation for how crazy those basketball fans are...

7. Calvin Johnson is going to be the best player in this year's NFL draft. Imagine if he hadn't lost his mind and gone to Georgia. The Dawgs would be like 2 time defending national champs.

8. Baseball. Ugh. I just don't bring myself to care.

9. A way to make track meets more interesting: allow all the events to happen simultaneously. Imagine a javelin throw happening in the same space as the hurdles. Hilarity ensues.

10. I miss Atlanta sports radio. The Nashville scene is full of older sounding gentleman who want to talk about how great 1970 was.

Easter Sunday...

Wow. I am tired...
Saturday night my recent stomach aliment went completely goofy on me, which meant I was up and down all down pretty much every hour on the hour. So needless to say, when Sunday morning arrived I was already exhausted. The big man needs his sleep!

Sunday morning at church I had to vacuum because the Easter Lillies that we set out made a mess. So I got early and knocked that out. During the two services, I was the children's moment guy. Now, I have to tell you this: being the children's announcement guy isn't my favorite thing. I just feel like it is awkward and not in my wheelhouse, but I have come to realize it is also a place where I am seen and can raise my appearance in the church. But I also, and way more importantly, try very, very hard to make it something that a 4-7 year old can understand. Sometimes it works and sometimes it doesn't. This week, it worked and I felt really grateful for it. You know you have hit a homerun when the pastor works part of your kids moment into their hard work of delivering the sermon. So, I did that.

We were packed at both services and I was very thankful for that, especially for the two pastors I work with. They have and are under a ton of junk lately, stuff that I think has been extremely unfair to them both. So I was glad that people ended their petty issue stuff enough to show up and worship on Easter.

Then I had lunch with the pastors and their families. They are good men, with good families and I am honored to serve with them and call them friends. June is going to be a really difficult time for me and I ask for your prayers for me and for them. Wounds will heal in time and I pray that we somehow each find ourselves stronger in the broken places.

Then my starbucks buddy Jack had invited me for dinner. His family just moved here and I hadn't met them. So it was a little weird to show up and find that Jack was just put on 2 weeks of total silence to heal his throat and voice, which has been bothering him for over a month. So, I had to work a little making everyone feel comfortable. He has a great family with four kids and though they were a little hesitant at first, they really were warm and welcoming to me. I look forward to hanging out with them some more.

Lastly, I decided to head over to Cumberland Church, which is a start-up church in the Franklin area that is an affiliate of Northpoint Church in Atlanta. I got lots of thoughts on it and will probably write that in another post in the coming days. Just stuff stirring around in my head. One thing that was cool was bumping into an Augusta guy, who nearly 10 years ago played guitar with me in a praise band for Trinity on the Hill's SoulScape service. (RIP). David is in Nashville trying to make a living as a musician and it turns out Adam, the guy who drummed with us, is living up here too, working for a music publisher. Look forward to maybe hanging out with them soon. Strange how God moves us into different places, times and opportunities. I will say it was nice to be able to pray, sing and worship at Cumberland. Probably my last time because they move to Sunday mornings in May, which is totally out for me. Church work has many assets but a flexible Sunday morning schedule isn't one of them!

Friday, April 06, 2007

The Edge 2007...

For the last few years, I have been so incredibly fortunate to partner with Jeremy Wilson and Jessi Ford from Forest Hills UMC in Macon, GA in doing an event we call "The Edge." Now, the Edge has a bit of a story. It started as a middle school event and was loosely related to the North Georgia Conference. And days before the first one, the leader of the event bailed out and Jeremy and I stepped in with some other people to clean up the pieces. And in doing so, we realized that we think and work alike and started partnering on more and more things.

So, the next year, we decided to keep the Edge event alive, despite it moving away from being a conference event, etc. So we bought the logo from Matt and kept using the name. And every year since, the Edge has been a great middle school event for our two churches. We have never tried to grow it larger and are happy with it.

So last weekend, we held the Edge 2007 at Whitewater Express. And it was great. Here are some of the key elements and ideas of it:
1. Whitewater Express. I hadn't been there since 2004(?) and they have done some great improvements. It really is becoming a world class camp for the kind of retreats we do. It isn't Young Life level but really nothing is. But it doesn't come with the headaches that renting a Young Life Camp comes with (work crew, etc.)

2. We used material from the website and ordered the curriculum Action Heroes. It looked at different Old Testament characters and was very good and adaptable. It saved us from bringing in a speaker as Jessi and I covered the talks. Jessi has come a long way and is becoming a really solid communicator. One day we may be able to say we knew her when...
(And personally, I haven't had a speaking experience where I really felt in the zone in awhile, which has made me nervous because I have some speaking gigs coming up. And Saturday night, God was merciful and moved me into the zone and I just let him speak through me. Great joy when we are doing what God made us to do.)

3. Activities. Most of my kids decided to play paintball and it was fun. I got tore up and I am still nursing some bruises. But it was a great bonding time. And my high level pain threshold has won me street cred with my middle school guys.

4. Worship. Jeremy is really the best worship leader you have never heard of because he has been so dedicated to serving the people of Forest Hills. He has talent but works hard and knows how to build a great worship team, even if it took his church until this year to figure out that they need to just hand him the ball and let him run with it. I always know that when Jeremy is leading, we are going to have a moving, meaningful worship time.

So we are already thinking and praying about next year. It is amazing when God calls people together and all their gifts move in unison to do his purposes...

Friday Movie Reviews (Vol. 4)

So this week's flick is what could be a the start of a lucrative franchise. (Sorry there wasn't more, but it has been a busy week.)

So Sunday night after returning from the middle school retreat, I decided to catch a movie before heading home to crash hard. So I knocked a film off the list I have been wanting to see and just haven't had the time: Shooter.

Now, here is the truth, Shooter is a decent action movie that I can definitely see becoming a franchise along the lines of Die Hard for Mark Wahlberg. It has the pieces there: a loner who loves America but hates the system, action sequences, crazy sniper shots (man, I need to dust off my copy of Halo 2) and more. But the movie does suffer from some bad directing and one really bad performance.

For starters, the movie's set-up is good. A sniper who quits after being abandoned by the country on an operation that kills his friend and spotter. Three years later, he is asked to evaluate a sniper scenario and gets implicated in a failed assassination attempt on the President. From there it turns into your typical man-on-the-run movie, where he picks up help, a sidekick, etc. And a lot of the movie seemed to be throwing action scenes upon action scene just because there is a budget for it, without doing much for the plot. But Wahlberg is believable as a hero and I could see this becoming a franchise, especially because the novel it is based on has several others books that follow it.

What was bad: Kate Mara. Like, I generally don't write and call-out people for being terrible in movies, but Mara is horrendous in this film. Admittedly, it is your typical damsel in distress role, but her bad acting and fake southern accent made me cringe nearly every moment she was on screen. It just was really, really badly done, and exploitative. (That isn't to say she is simply a terrible actress. I felt her work in We are Marshall was pretty good.)

On the whole, Shooter is a "wait for the DVD" or when it makes the jump to heavy rotation on USA or TBS.

You Might Be a Redneck...(Vol. 1)

So I have a calendar where you get a different "You might be a redneck if..." jokes every day. Here are two of my recent favorites, mainly because they are true of me:
You might be a redneck if you've ever been injured playing ping-pong.
You might be a redneck if your idea of "getting lucky" is passing the emissions test. (Oh boy that one is true of me every August.)

Thursday, April 05, 2007

Maundy Thursday...

From one of my favorite bands that I am rediscovering. I thought especially meaningful this Holy Week.
Lyrics from the song Around My Neck

The cross I wear around my neck, what does it mean
if it does not mean death? Please tell me
if it doesn't mean blood
or nails or crying
or loneliness.

The cross I wear around my neck, what is it for
if it is not for breaking?
If it's not for pain
or nakedness
or hammering.

The cross I wear around my neck is being raised above my head
and I think this time it's wearing someone else
I see it drop into the ground
and when it falls I hear the sound
of someone crying
"I love you"

The cross I wear around my neck, what does it mean
if it does not mean love? Please tell me
if it doesn't sing
of hope and healing
and forgiveness.

The cross I wear around my neck, who is it for
if it is not for me?
If it's not for sin
and all my searching for the innocence.

The cross I wear around my neck is being raised above my head
and I think this time it's wearing someone else
I see it drop into the ground
and when it fall I hear the sound
of someone screaming
"I love you"

The cross I wear around my neck, who is it for
if it is not for us?
The lame and the blind
the ones held captive
and the fatherless...

Brain Dump...

Man, it has been a long and sometimes very frustrating week. I am slap wore out and there is still a big push yet to come on stuff to do. I am very thankful for having Monday off, if for no other reason than I get to do my taxes, which I have been putting off needlessly for far too long.

Today I learned that someone I respect and that has been a huge help to me during my time here is leaving the church. I honestly don't know what to think. I respect him a ton and his leaving will be a big loss for us as a church.

I am way behind on my viewings of Lost and Battlestar Galactica. I need to get caught up...especially since BSG is done for the season. I have heard a bunch of spoilers already about the end of the season.

Not msny movies this week, just too much going on. Easter may be a good day to play some catch up.

Being far from home on holidays really stinks.

Wednesday, April 04, 2007

The Easter Haircut...

Monday, April 02, 2007

My Celebrity Look-Alikes

Friday, March 30, 2007

Friday Movie Reviews (Vol. 3)

So this week there are a few more reviews than last week. But I didn't make it out to all the movies I wanted to see. Blame? The middle school retreat I am on this weekend. (Hopefully next week I can play catch up with Reign Over Me and Shooter. The current Netflix selection is Casino Royale, The Heart of the Game and Buffy, Season 2, Disc 4.)

Saturday afternoon I saw the new film Pride which stars Terrence Howard and Bernie Mac. And to tell the truth, I am biased for films like this. I guess the idea of a person who comes in and inspires a group of people towards a common goal rings a little too close to home for me to be objective. That being said, here is my review.

I think Pride is an good film with some great performances that tells a true story. The story is of Jim Ellis, a collegiate swimmer during the Civil Rights movement who moves to Philadelphia and serves at a run-down, soon to close, public recreation facility. From there, he grows a team and teaches them about swimming, competition and pride. On the whole, I think it is a good film worth watching. Howard gives a great performance and continues his streak of picking good roles. (Though, he is scheduled to play Jim Rhodes in Iron Man, a film I am skeptical about because of Robert Downey, Jr. playing the lead. But, hey, everyone's got to get paid sometime...)

Saturday night, I opened up a Netflix envelope and watched the film Stranger than Fiction. And I have to say, it is a very, very good film with some strange-ness that could be distracting but I found to be immensely endearing. For starter, Will Ferrell plays a comedic role that is a far cry from the kinds of characters he has played in films like Talladega Nights and Blades of Steel. And he does it extremely well. Additionally, I now think that Maggie Gyllenhaal was jobbed out of an Oscar nomination for her amazing portrayal of a woman that is smart, funny, sexual and intense. (And as long time friends know, I have always had a little thing for the ladies that are a little odd. She fits the mold.)

The premise is that Will Ferrell plays an IRS agent who can hear a woman who is writing a story about his life and his impending death. It feels a little bit Ground Hog Day-ish but it works and is smart. The author, played by Emma Thompson, eventually comes to realize that the character is a real-life person after he has fallen in love and begun to live a life outside the mundane life that he had lived. I highly recommend this one, as it shows Ferrell has some better chops that we give him credit for, and the story is smart, funny and odd, which is unusual from the Hollywood establishment.

I also saw the recent film A Good Year, starring Russell Crowe. It is a decent film, but not great. I generally file it in the category of movies where the "adult-you" is somehow confronted by the "child-you" and comes to the realization that you are a jerk. Pretty basic and simple. There are some interesting plot twists and turns but on the whole, catch it on cable.