the Weekly Town Crier

Town Crier

Yeah, whatever, nevermind. Where is my mind?

Buy my art here or here or contact me directly to purchase originals.

Visit our family blog: “The Thomas Ten.”

Read the New York Times‘ piece “Independent Musicians Find Unexpected Rewards in Streaming.”

Watch Keith Richards Teach Matt Sweeney Some Acoustic Licks” at Stereogum.

Watch a Japanese Kokeshi Doll Emerge From a Spinning Block of Wood” at Colossus.

R.I.P. Joe Moss, manager of the Smiths and Johnny Marr.

See “Dually Sinister and Playful Solarplate Etchings by Jaco Putker”.

Read Time‘s tips: “How to Avoid Having Your Posts Show Up in Facebook’s New Public Search”

Browse Consequence of Sound‘s “Brief History of Prince the Weirdo”.

Read as Clickhole asks “How Many Of These Hayao Miyazaki Films Have You Seen?”

See the “new Super Mario Bros. speedrun record.”

Read Slate‘s piece finding that “Highly Religious People See Little Conflict With Science”.

Read Smithsonian‘s piece finding that “27 Percent of U.S. Adults Didn’t Read a Single Book Last Year.”

Read about the upcoming tour of Andy Kaufman and Redd Foxx holograms.

Read Uncut‘s piece: “The story of Television, by Richard Lloyd”.

Read Consequence of Sound‘s report: “Anthony Bourdain to open giant Blade Runner-themed food market in New York City”.

Browse CNN‘s collection of “7 terrifying airplane seat patents.”

Read Vox‘ piece: “The philosophical problem of killing baby Hitler, explained.”

Read AV Club‘s report: “Wes Anderson would like to make a horror movie”.

Read as Consequence of Sound reports “Maynard James Keenan wants nothing to do with Tool, or their fans” and Phoenix New Times‘ report: “Maynard James Keenan Has Two Things On His Mind: Puscifer and Wine. Tool Fans Will Just Have To Wait“. Also Read NME‘s piece: “Tool frontman labels band’s own fans as ‘insufferable retards.’ And don’t forget Keenan’s response to the hoopla surrounding his original remarks: “Our core fanbase aren’t fanatics. They’re music lovers & artists & good people. Its the fanatics that are insufferable,” Maynard James Keenan says.”

See “Newly Digitized ‘Phenakistoscope’ Animations That Pre-Date GIFs by Over 150 Years”.

Read KTAR‘s report that Phoenix has been named one of the top pizza cities in the country.

Ever wonder “What Happens When Your ‘Jeopardy!’ Response Goes Viral.”

Read as Aquarium Drunkard interviews Phil Cook.

Read as Paste reports that “Ballast Point is Going Public”.

Read as NPR considers the enduring appeal of Dungeons and Dragons after 40 years.

Watch free documentaries.

Read/Listen as NPR wonders “Why Are Old Women Often The Face Of Evil In Fairy Tales And Folklore?” and read as the Atlantic wonders “Why Are All the Cartoon Mothers Dead?

Browse “Augustine’s Seven Habits of Highly Effective Writers”.

Read Food and Wine‘s report that Canada has a burger stuffed with peanut butter cups.

Read “A Deeper Look Into The Life Of Mansa Musa – The Richest Human Being Who Ever Lived.”

Read Wall Street Journal‘s piece “Science Increasingly Makes the Case for God.”

The Keurig of Home Brewing Batches Craft Beer at the Push of a Button.”

Take “A 13,235-Mile Road Trip for 70-Degree Weather Every Day.”

Listen as Terry Gross talks to Carrie Brownstein about her new memoir Hunger Makes Me A Modern Girl. Also read Noisey‘s interview and read Spin‘s interview.

See a $39,000 knife.

Read Stereogum‘s interview with Son Volt’s Jay Farrar. Also read amNewYork‘s interview.

Read as the Daily Beast speaks with Ta-Nehisi Coates on “Why Whites Like His Writing”

Read as the Los Angeles Review of Books interviews Stephen King.

Read PopMatters‘ interview with Kurt Vile.

Read/Listen as Gloria Steinem speaks with Fresh Air‘s Terry Gross.

Read about the French vending machine that will print you a short story.

Read Relix‘ interview with Jason Isbell or read The Planet Weekly‘s interview.

Read/Listen as NPR talks with Elvis Costello about his new memoir Unfaithful Music And Disappearing Ink.

Read as James Franco speaks with Variety about adapting William Faulkner’s The Sound and Fury for the screen.

Read Rolling Stone‘s report that Phil Collins is unretiring.

Read Paste‘s report of the new (unauthorized) Beastie Boys musical, Licensed to Ill.

Read BoingBoing‘s piece: “The more unequal your society is, the more your laws will favor the rich.”

Read Steve Martin‘s picks for “5-10-15-20” (featuring “people talking about the music that made an impact on them throughout their lives, five years at a time”).

Read Hi Fructose‘s profile of Mark Mothersbaugh.

Read as Consequence of Sound’s report: “Study suggests Spotify doesn’t have a negative impact on record sales.

Read as Richard Mouw considers the ever-growing Christian opposition to Halloween.

Watch the trailer for the upcoming Dave Navarro documentary detailing the murder of the Jane’s Addiction/Red Hot Chili Peppers guitarist’s mother.

Read FACT’s report “Jimi Hendrix’s London home to open as museum.”

Read Pitchfork‘s report that Digable Planets are reuniting for a Seattle show.

Browse “the 9 rarest plants in the world.”

Read The Guardian‘s profile of Mark Hogancamp, subject of the fabulous documentary Marwencol.

Read Hypebeast‘s report: “Apple Records Largest Profits in Corporate History.”

Read as NPR considers Ben Carson’s Seventh Day Adventism.

Read about the Hatian roots of zombie myths.

Read Salon‘s report about Katy Perry campaigning for Hillary Clinton.

See a “floating” record player.

Read about the Japanese manga series revolving around a cast on unemployed men who decide to become great housekeepers to attract women. The series was pulled by the author after several men complained.

Read about the sock company making a point about differences through mismatched socks.

Read as Techly wonders if the music you listen to is having long-term effects on your brain.

Read a profile of the “hyena men” of Nigeria.

Watch an animated Bill Murray interview from 1988.

Read The Guardian‘s report that Anonymous plans to release the names of approximately 1,000 Ku Klux Klan members.

Read The Stranger‘s interview with Richard Bishop about the reissue of Sun City Girls’ class Torch of the Mystics.

Read this report that Goonies 2 has been confirmed, including the full original cast.

the Weekly Town Crier

YeOldeTownCrierBuy my art here or here or contact me directly to purchase originals.

Visit our family blog: “The Thomas Ten.”

Browse Rolling Stone‘s list of the “100 Greatest Songwriters of All-Time.”

Read Paste‘s report that Sesame Street will head to HBO in the Fall.

Read as Rolling Stone wonders: “Is Apple Taking Over the Music Business?”

Read as NPR’s “the Good Listener” asks: “Are Tall People Obligated To Stand In The Back At Concerts?”

Browse as R.E.M.’s “Michael Stipe lists his 10 favourite books”.

Browse Paste‘s list of “Five Band Photo Cliches”.

Browse as: “Radiohead‘s Jonny Greenwood reveals his current favourite album, book and video game”.

R.I.P. Bob Johnston: “Producer for Bob Dylan, Leonard Cohen, Johnny Cash“.

R.I.P. Pink Floyd.

R.I.P. Yvonne Craig, television’s Batgirl.

See “A Ziggurat of Mirrors”.

Read Alternative Press‘ report that “the Crow” re-make will happen.

Read as NME considers the biggest talking points from Morrissey’s recent Larry King interview.

Read as AV Club considers the world of professional wrestling.

Read Paste‘s report that “Tracy Morgan Will Return to Host SNL in First Post-Accident Performance”.

Browse as the Guardian makes their picks for “The 100 best novels written in English”.

Read Consequence of Sound‘s report that Flight of the Conchords are writing a movie and planning a tour.

See Banksy’s “Disney-Trolling pop-up Theme Park”.

Read this piece wondering: “As humans, we have an urge to explore. So, where to next?”

Read as Politico considers: “How Google Could Rig the 2016 Election”.

Have you tried “The breakfast beer of champions”?

Read as Stephen Colbert says: “‘I Am Here to Know God, Love God, Serve God’.

Read as: “Jeff Tweedy talks Wilco, Star Wars and Bob Dylan”.

Now you can buy a “record label in a box“.

See Mumford and Sons re-make themselves as a ’90’s boy band, “Mumtown”.

Read as the Atlantic considers “The Unlikely Reanimation of H.P. Lovecraft“.

Read about “bicycle desks”.

Read Uncut‘s piece: “Joy Division: “We didn’t know Ian Curtis was approaching his breaking point”

Read about the “Origin Story of the Iconic Carlton Dance from Fresh Prince”.

Read as “Jane’s Addiction Break Down ‘Ritual de lo Habitual’ Track by Track” for Rolling Stone where Dave Navarro says: “”The Velvet Underground, Led Zeppelin, Bauhaus, Van Halen and Rush were all part of our sound,” and Perry Farrell giggles: “”If you ask me, I think it’s one of the greatest records of all time.”

 

The Weekly Town Crier

YeOldeTownCrierYes it’s been a while. I’ve had a lot going on, OK.

If you’re not familiar with the concept; I collect and post links that, for whatever reason, caught my interest. You browse said links and we all find enlightenment. Or something like that.

Buy my art here or here or contact me directly to purchase originals.

Visit our family blog: “The Thomas Ten.”

Read about Apple’s possible entry into the wireless market.

See a portrait of Putin by a Ukrainian artist from 5,000 shell casings from the separatist east.

Ever wonder why coffee makes you poop?

Ever wonder why your pee (may or may not) smell like Asparagus?

Ever wonder why you have to poop at bookstores (apparently this is a real thing)?

Ever wonder if you could make money selling your poop (apparently this is also a real thing)?

Read about the pop-up Pantone cafe offering Pantone coordinated snacks.

See the Runcible, a new minimalist cell phone that wants to be an heirloom piece.

Read about “The Origin Of “Piss Poor” And Other Popular Sayings”.

See how creepy the Teletubbies can be in a Joy Division video mashup.

Read the Atlantic‘s piece: “The Covert World of People Trying to Edit Wikipedia—for Pay.”

Read about the Canadian who set the “Beer Mile World Record,” eh.

Read about the guy who refuses to mow his lawn, saying: “Instead of putting nature in its place, we need to find our place in nature.”

Read Paste‘s report that Bill Murray is confirmed to make a cameo appearance in the new Ghostbusters reboot.

R.I.P. author and critic Alan Cheuse.

R.I.P. Rowdy Roddy Piper.

R.I.P. Columbia House.

Browse pianist/composer Dustin O’Halloran‘s list of influential albums.

Read as David Byrne calls for more transparency from the music streaming business at the New York Times.

Read about the hitchhiking robot who made it all over Europe but was killed in America.

Have you heard the mysteriously released Nirvana demo material? Thoughts?

Read Fact‘s report that the soundtracks to David Lynch‘s Twin Peaks and Fire Walk With Me will be made available on vinyl.

Read Paste‘s report that William Shakespeare smoked marijuana.

Read FACT‘s report that David Lynch is set to record the new season of Twin Peaks as one continuous movie and then edit into episodes.

Watch the new Homestar Runner short: “Flash is Dead”.

Read about Martin Scorsese & Leonardo DiCaprio’s plan for a movie adaptation of The Devil in the White City.

Read Salon‘s piece: “David Foster Wallace is long gone, but Bret Easton Ellis is keeping the feud alive”.

Read the Atlantic‘s piece pondering “Why the pressure to achieve academically is an impediment to the learning process.”

Read Flavorwire‘s report that Showtime is set to “Adapt Patti Smith Memoir ‘Just Kids’ Into Miniseries.”

Read Paste‘s report: “Netflix Acquires Mascots, Christopher Guest‘s Mockumentary.

See everyday objects re-made with human guts.

Read as the AV Club wonders why “Why 35 screenwriters worked on The Flintstones movie” and it still stunk.

As many people reflect on a year without Robin Williams, read Time‘s piece: “Why the Funniest People Are Sometimes the Saddest”

Has the tomb of Nefertiti finally been found?

Browse “Relevant”‘s list of 10 Fall television shows to be excited about.

Read about Seattle’s move to tax firearms and ammunition.

Read as NPR wonders: “Would Voters Entrust The White House To An Atheist?”

Read the NY Post‘s report that the Mets have already begun selling playoff tickets. Too soon?

Read as “Michael Jordan says There’s ‘No Question’ He Could Have Beaten LeBron James One-On-One.” Thoughts?

Read an interview with the 19-year old Fall Out Boy fan who stood between police and Ferguson protesters.

Browse NME‘s list of “30 Of The Greatest Ever Second Albums .”

Read reports that Steven Spielberg has coaxed Gene Wilder from retirement.

Read Paste‘s report that Winona Ryder has confirmed that Beetlejuice 2 is “in the works”.

Learn these “9 Habits of People Who Are Always on Time”.

Find out “What Your Name Says About You”.

Browse Mental Floss‘ list of “15 Movies That Were Turned Into TV Shows”.

Read PRI‘s piece: “What happens when the dictionary is just a website?”

Read Entertainment Weekly‘s piece: “Fox confirms ‘X-Files‘ reboot talks”.

See “The Stunning Geography of Incarceration”.

Read The Atlantic‘s piece: “Essential Oils Might Be the New Antibiotics”.

Browse Paste‘s list of “7 Sorely Missed Cereals from the Early ‘90s”.

Read about the gals from Broad City telling the gals from Sleater-Kinney: “We Wouldn’t Be Heare Without You”.

Listen as NPR’s All Things Considered previewed 2015’s jazz scene with Christian McBride.

Download two high-quality, recent Chris Forsyth shows.

Read Paste‘s report that “Thom Yorke Will Compose Music for Broadway Production Old Times”.

Browse Phoenix New Times’ list of the “10 Coolest Churches in Metro Phoenix”.

Read about the five-year old who received an invoice for missing a friend’s birthday party.

Read FACT‘s report: “Kurt Cobain solo album set for November release”.

Are Russia and Nato ‘actively preparing for war’?

Browse Paste‘s list of “The 10 Biggest Rebrands of 2014”.

Read as the Atlantic wonders why so many of us hate talking on the phone.

In the world of mathematical tiling, news doesn’t come bigger than this.

Browse Flavorwire‘s list of “50 Books Guaranteed to Make You More Interesting”.

Browse BoingBoing‘s “Great list of classic ambient albums.”

Ever Wonder “Why didn’t people smile in old photos?

Faith Anchors the Soul

2014-09-20 14.18.09I have come to believe that the search for “identity” is one of the key issues facing us all. By “identity,” I mean more than simply your name, rank and serial number, though that’s as deeply as many of us think on this key issue. Instead, I’m referring to how we understand ourselves and present ourselves to others. I’m talking about where we find our worth and our security. I’m talking about self-knowledge and security.

Our sense of identity is uniquely tied to what we do. In fact, many of us (unconsciously or not) find our identity in our jobs. Don’t believe me? Think about just about any time you’ve met someone new. After the exchange of names, what’s the usual first question?What do you do? 

Of course this is understandable. Our jobs are where we spend the most time and we rely on them for income, and by extension, stability. It is understandable but it is not healthy. When we find our identity in what we do, we find ourselves in the never-ending pursuit of working for our identity rather than from our identity and thus we rarely find true security. We will feel more valuable, we will have more worth (literally and figuratively) when we get that promotion or that other job. And when the work is not fulfilling, we are not fulfilled. We never truly find out who we are because we are looking for that in moving targets.

Unemployment is a special kind of hell in the midst of this essential conversation. I have applied to over 125 jobs across multiple states. I’m currently receiving 2-3 rejections daily. Every time I see someone I know, they ask about the job search; an unintentionally cruel reminder that I have been unable to find work. They mean well. But the question stings and, when repeated hundreds of times, can cause one to question their identity.

There are mornings when I second-guess the decisions that led to this point. I could have stuck out that situation but should I have? What am I doing with my life? What do I want to do? Does it matter what I want to do? Why can’t I get a job? How many no’s can a person receive without taking it personally? Am I not worth hiring? What am I worth? How do I know? Will I be happier when I find a job? How do I remind myself that I am not what I do, when all I can think about is wanting to do something?

This is why the issue of identity is so important and why my faith in Jesus is so essential. I have a tattoo on the underside of my left arm which depicts an anchor amidst a storm with the words: “Faith anchors the soul.” This is a personal reflection on Hebrews 6:13-20 which reminds us that our hope in Jesus serves as an anchor for the soul.

I don’t know how you deal with struggles or your personal faith journey but I know that, without my faith in Jesus, I would have had a nervous breakdown by now. The heart of following Jesus is not the politicians we vote for, the radio we listen to, the things we boycott, or the issues we oppose. It is that our very identity is changed and it is secure. In spite of our circumstances and in spite of us.

When the Holy Spirit brings someone to faith, a mysterious thing happens. We are somehow united to Jesus so that what’s true of the Savior is true of His people. We are transferred from the “domain of darkness” into Jesus’ kingdom, in whom we have “redemption and the forgiveness of sins” (Colossians 1:13-14). “He who knew no sin was made sin on our behalf so that we could become the righteousness of God” (2 Corinthians 5:21). We are united with Jesus in His death to sin and resurrection unto newness of life (Romans 6) and we are “seated with Him in the heavenly places” (Ephesians 2) even now.

But, our union with Jesus means more than just getting in to heaven when I die. It has drastic implications for life here and now. I don’t have to find a job to be worth something (though I would like to find a job). Yes, I find my “identity” in something outside of myself, but instead of something like a job which ebbs and flows, my identity is anchored and becomes my anchor.

Over the past couple of years, I have meditated more on one scene of Scripture than any other. Do you remember the scene where Jesus goes out to the Jordan to be baptized by his crazy revival preaching, bug-eating cousin (found in Matthew 3 , Mark 1 and Luke 3)? As Jesus comes up out of the water, the Spirit descends on Him in the form of a dove and a voice comes from the heavens saying: “This is my Son in whom I am well-pleased.” Curiously enough, Jesus is immediately sent into the wilderness where Satan immediately attacks Jesus’ identity: if you really are who you say you are. . . but that’s a study for another day.

I know that, while we feel like our house will never sell, while it seems like I will never find a job, I know that I already have all of the comfort, security, belonging, and love that I could ever hope for because my identity is God’s child. He is pleased with me even when I am not pleased with my circumstances. I don’t have to work for acceptance because I am accepted by God. This is good news indeed.

I may not see the light through the clouds yet, and the waves don’t seem to yet but I have an anchor in the midst of the storm. This is good news indeed. This is how, even in the midst of life’s storms, we can “be still” and know that He is G0d (Psalm 46). I simply pray that these storms cause me to hold on tighter to my anchor.

Rent a Preacher

pulpitThis might not make sense unless you’ve been in “vocational ministry” in some capacity (and even then it might not and that’s OK), but, after 10 years of full-time pastoring with no break, it was important for Kristi and I to have an undetermined amount of time during which “ministry” as a profession was completely off of the table.

This led Kristi and I to prayerfully resign from ministry in January, 2015. After of eight months out of ministry as a profession, I have begun to miss parts of my former life as a pastor. Though I do not see myself returning to vocational ministry at the moment, I do feel like God has gifted and compelled me to publicly share God’s Word with others.  And, honestly, after eight months, I miss preaching.

Since Kristi and I are in a time of transition, it’s a perfect time to make myself available for pulpit-supply.

If you are a pastor: Would you like a pulpit breakDo you have a Sunday on your calendar you just can’t fill (I’m better than nothing!)? Would you like your congregation to hear the same thing you’ve been saying but from someone else?

If you are not a pastorDo you know a pastor who might like to have someone preach one Sunday?

Contrary to popular opinion, I am not too much of a loony. For proof, you can hear some of my former sermons here.

I am also available to speak at conferences, camps, quinceaneras. I also do weddings, vow renewals, (and funerals).

To schedule a speaking engagement, please e-mail me to schedule a speaking engagement.

If you’re interested in booking the Thomas Ten to promote foster care/adoption at your event, please e-mail us to schedule a speaking engagement.