Tuesday, August 29, 2006

Astros had the day off yesterday

Howdy!

The Astros had the day off yesterday...and they have what it takes. I hope they realize that as they come back to Minute Maid Park. There is no doubt in my mind that they can beat anyone when the bats are on like they have been this past week.

We've won four out of the last five, and those were four solid wins.

OK, OK, I know, three of them were against the Pirates. Keep in mind, though, the Pirates swept the Cardinals just a couple weeks ago, didn't they? Don't we have at least a couple series with the Cardinals during this race? Aren't those some of the most important games in regards to catching up?

Sounds simple to me. Let's play the Brewers, Cardinals and everyone else just like we played the Pirates, and we're good.

Taveras and Scott are warriors. Berkman keeps hitting them out. And, is there anyone else that wants to tell Brad Lidge we're proud of him recently? Someone should.

The Rocket is On. Oswalt is on. Pettite is pitching incredibly well of late.

If any team can do it, this one can.

If I was a player on the Astros, I would think of it this way: you know you can beat anyone when you play like you did the past few games.

Every team the Astros face from here on out is not only beatable, those teams also want to take this away the feeling of a World Series appearance from them.

That can't be acceptable to them! How bad do they want it? I understand Matt over at Channel 11 has upgraded our condition from "dead" to "on life support." We'll see.

On the Texans game...

You might ask, why has it taken me so long to blog about that game?

I'm taking my time getting started, just like our offense did.

I'm kidding, I'm kidding! I felt pretty good overall about what we saw. Defensively we are on track. Not sure what was going on offensively there at the beginning, but I'm confident a little work and we're going to have a good season.

David just needed to relax. Maybe he's so used to ending up on his back at the end of a play he doesn't know what to do with himself now that he's getting some protection. This is also a new system he is learning.

Can I state the obvious? We need to convert some of those drives into touchdowns. If we do that, we're going to win some football games.

Zoey visits and other thoughts

I just spent about two weeks watching my sister's miniature schnauzer here at my place while she was on vacation, and I didn't realize how much fun they can be to have around.

I let Zoey do all the things here my sister won't let her do at her house. She especially seemed to enjoy people food.

Zoey is the daughter of my mom's miniature schnauzer, Fritzi. My grandparents had a miniature schnauzer as well. My sister said Zoey can hang out at my place every once in a while but I don't know if that is often enough. It might be about time to get a dog of my own.

I was talking to someone about the photo of myself and my sister on my last post. I must be around nine or ten years old there (I was trying to remember when those "We Still Luv You Blue" shirts came out). I was a huge Oilers fan back in the day.

As a youngster, I remember watching Earl, Dan Pastorini, Billy "White Shoes" Johnson and the others sitting on my grandfather's lap in Deer Park, Texas. My mother told me that after one Oilers playoff loss -- I believe it was the AFC championship game with the Steelers where Mike Renfro was robbed of the touchdown in the endzone -- I actually stayed home from school the following Monday because I was so heartbroken they lost that game. Silly? Probably.

Well, the Astros are struggling, are they not? Matt over at Channel 11 declared the team "dead in the water" this week on his video blog, but the last time I heard a news organization declare them "dead" they went to the World Series. Granted, they have a long road ahead but they’re not dead until they are mathematically eliminated. I enjoy catching Matt's vblog every morning.

Claudia Feldman did a nice interview that ran this past weekend in the Houston Chronicle with Lance Berkman on his walk with God and its tie to his life in baseball.

I like what he said about keeping an "eternal perspective" in regards to what he does. At the end of the day, it’s all about the Kingdom. Realizing that notoriety of any type, whether a believer is an athlete, a business person, musician, etc., is ultimately given for the purpose of directing people toward Him. As people see God’s life-changing power in us, and as believers strive to lift Him up and give the glory to the One worthy of it, He will "draw all men unto himself."

It was cool to hear about how many of the guys on the team are believers.

The Texans apparently loaded up on a bus this week and went to see the movie "Invincible" as a group. The game Saturday was very impressive again as a whole and I know the fans are excited about this season.

Have you been following this new trend of video blogging? I think we all should start doing it.

I find the whole topic quite interesting. I’ve read several articles recently on this new wave of Internet communications, allowing anyone the ability to broadcast extensively online with only a computer and a camcorder or webcam.

One of the most fascinating phenomenons on the Web right now is this site, Youtube.com, which allows people to upload videos. They now boast tens of millions of video downloads a day. Musicians are posting music videos. Companies seek ways to market products and services. Politicians are even getting in on it.

The New York Times had a piece on its website the other day that discussed the popularity of a couple high-school-aged kids that are getting hundreds of thousands of views on this simple wecam soap opera they are broadcasting to the world on YouTube.

These kids are apparently getting press outside the United States now as well. Yesterday, I heard about coverage in the U.K. However, there are some who feel this is not a "real life" drama, but actually a cleverly developed marketing scheme. No matter, you have to appreciate the creativity of either the kids who thought this up, or whoever is behind it. These kids are smart...like Einstein smart, or Newton smart.

I'm not sure the idea for the new Survivor season is too smart. We'll have to wait and see. Have you heard about this? The competition will divide contestants along racial lines. Yikes!

Haven't we worked hard enough to make people feel they don't need to compete with those of other races, creeds, colors, etc. in this country? Could this great idea possibly stir up dissension?

Maybe me and the Princess should prayerfully consider applying for The Amazing Race together someday. Fun!

Oh, yeah, no Princess yet.

So, I went back the other day and read over all my blog entries, starting with the very first in early-December. It’s good to revisit the genesis of something every once in a while to refocus on why you started it in the first place.

This blog is entitled, "John is Waiting for His Princess," and John will keep waiting until I have my Princess. Rereading the entry about the Rockets game was encouraging. My desire to fall in love and marry a woman of God is a God-given desire, and I will never give up on it.

Like the prophet Habakkuk said, "Write down the revelation and make it plain on tablets so that a herald may run with it. For the revelation speaks of an appointed time; it speaks of the end and will not prove false. Thought it linger, wait for it; it will certainly come and not delay." (Habakkuk 2:3).

I know this blog was a creative idea given to me by Him. It would be foolish of me not to stay focused and to not continue chronicling the journey. In fact, I probably need to find ways to expand this concept in the future. Possibly get on YouTube and vblog occasionally?

The scripture for today:

"And I am convinced and sure of this very thing, that He Who began a good work in you will continue until the day of Jesus Christ, developing and perfecting and bringing it to full completion in you." (Phillipians 1:6)

Monday, August 14, 2006

Astros and Texans thoughts...

Kudos to the marketing/special events department over at the San Diego Padres for a great idea. Here's something I found interesting: a major league ballgame and a P.O.D. show at the same location. Sounds like a exceptional way to spend an afternoon to me.

It happens over at PETCO Park in a few days. San Diego Warriors should check this one out for sure.

Meanwhile, here in Houston, the Astros dropped a couple but all we have to do is to win two or three against the Cubs to stay on course. The team did, after all, sweep the Pirates so all is still well.

Friday night at the ballpark was a great time.

And the Texans looked quite impressive Saturday night. I initially questioned passing up Reggie and Vince, but it appears from the team's new enthusiasm and what we saw Saturday night that the decision makers knew what they were doing when they opted to select Mario.

Carr played well. No one got sacked! The defense played well.

Kubiak was definately the right man for the job. It's amazing to see a team that was playing so bad last season people actually accused them of losing on purpose, now with a whole new optimism and winning mentality.

There's no question in my mind that they won Saturday night on purpose.

Let me say what it is too early for the the coaches and sports writers to say: let's shoot for a playoff spot. I'm a fan so I can have what others might call "unrealistic expectations" at this point. I believe anything is possible.

Welcome to Houston, Mario. We love you and are excited you are here. Please tell David you'd like to come to church with him sometime when you guys are off. We'd love to see you. See, David, all he needed was an invitation. :)

Thursday, August 10, 2006

The Lord longs to be gracious to you

Last night at church Lisa shared a scripture that really stuck with me -- I can't ever remember hearing it before. I marked it in my Bible determined to take a closer look at it. So, during my quiet time this morning I really spent time meditating on it.

"Yet the Lord longs to be gracious to you; he rises to show you compassion. For the Lord is a God of justice. Blessed are all who wait on him" (Isaiah 30:18).

I grabbed a copy of the paper and read about last night's party at Minute Maid. All those "long" balls "rising" and falling into the Crawford Boxes.

http://www.chron.com/disp/story.mpl/sports/bb/4107007.html

They've often said baseball is a metaphor for life. I'm not sure if God is involved in baseball. I can't find scripture or verse to support it.

But it sure is fun to think about!!