Sunday, December 07, 2008

Isn't It Ironic, Don't Ya' Think?

Being the rabid Cleveland Browns fan that I am, this football season has been a major disappointment. I never bought into the preseason hype that the Browns were Super Bowl contenders after a 10-6 season last year, but I never thought they would be this bad. I picked them to hover around the .500 mark. Not likely now. Over at, there are an interesting couple of articles that attempt to assess blame and come up with solutions. There are too many problems to narrow it down to just one thing. The incredible drop-off of Pro Bowl players from a year ago. The remarkable inability of the defense to tackle. The horrible clock-management and lack of creativity on the part of Romeo Crennel and staff (with the exception of the win against the Giants on Monday Night Football earlier this year). Derek Anderson going from stud to dud in the same amount of time he traveled the other direction. I agree with Terry Pluto that I don't think Savage is the problem. He writes: "Despite this dismal 4-8 season, the Browns do have better players than when Savage took over four years ago." But one thing is for sure: Braylon Edwards' inability to catch the ball - what wide receivers are paid to do - hasn't helped. He has, what, 17 drops on the season? Ridiculous! It made me remember this ad for fantasy football that aired a couple of years ago. Isn't it ironic?

Maybe he needs to play blindfolded...

Friday, December 05, 2008

What's Been Going On?

That's a fine question. There has been a lot going on lately. Novembers are usually pretty full in my world. They usually include a youth fall retreat, the National Youth Workers Convention, and often a trip home to Ohio for Thanksgiving. Some of those things still happened this year, but my November looked much different than I expected.

A couple of weekends ago, we did have our youth fall retreat at Logan Valley Christian Retreat in Ellington, MO. It was a great weekend! We had over 60 students attend and they all seemed to have a good time and take something away from the weekend. The highlight for me was to observe as the students went through the prayer labyrinth that we set up. It seemed that each student connected with a different part of the labyrinth and God met them each in a different way. We could have just done the labyrinth and it would have been a great weekend. But we did a lot of other stuff, too. Overall, a really good weekend.

The following weekend I was supposed to attend the NYWC with some of my volunteers in the youth ministry. However, the night before we were supposed to leave (Thursday night), Hanna got sick and we had to take her to the ER. It took a couple of days for the test results to come back, but it turns out that she had a urinary tract infection. In the meantime, I woke up on Friday morning at 3:00am with a horrible headache. No medicine helped the pain to go away. I was hoping to feel better and meet my volunteers in Nashville for the convention, but it never went away. Because of the pain, I couldn't eat or sleep and started vomiting that evening. Finally, after 25 hours of misery, at 4:00am on Saturday morning, I took myself to the ER. They performed a CAT scan on me and did a spinal tap and admitted me to the hospital. They figured that I had meningitis of some sort, either bacterial (the bad one, which can result in brain damage or death) or viral (mostly just annoying and painful), but they needed me to stay until the tests came back. The finally came back and confirmed that I did have viral meningitis. I was discharged on Monday with a regimen of pain meds (yeah, I missed the whole convention), which I have been taking ever since. Most of Thanksgiving week was spent in pain or a drug-induced fog. Fortunately, Marcy's mom and stepdad came into town for Thanksgiving. hey provided a lot of help with the kids so I didn't have to worry about Marcy having to do too much with me being laid up. They were already planning on coming for the holiday, so it worked out pretty well in the long run. I started back to work some this week, so I think it is soon to be behind me. Viral meningitis is always one of those things you hear about, but you never know anyone that had had it. I guess I can't say that anymore.

So, November was a little different for me. And now, I just got a call from Marcy who told me that Hanna has to go to the hospital on Monday to get checked out after her urinary tract infection. That's great, because we haven't spent enough time there lately. Pray for her, please.