Quick Hit: Mike Leach Just Got Punk’d

Imagine this.  I went out for lunch today, and came back only to find that Texas Tech coach Mike Leach is now out of a job.

For those of you who have been living under a rock for the past few days, here is how it went down:  Adam James was a little-used receiver at Texas Tech.  He is the son of former NFL standout and ESPN announcer Craig James.  Because of this, he considered himself a rock star who did not have to give the full effort that his coaches were asking of him.  He was frequently critical of the job that his coaches were doing, as if he, a 20-or-thereabouts college kid who just happened to be the son of a big-shot ESPN announcer, knew more about how to coach a college football program than his coaches, who had been doing their job for years before he came along.

Well, Adam James got a mild concussion last week.  He was held out of two practices; to hear him tell it, he was confined to intolerably dark, claustrophobic spaces such as equipment storage rooms and electrical closets for the duration of practice.

On Monday, Texas Tech suspended Mike Leach for the bowl game pending the outcome of an investigation into the incident.  Mike Leach lawyered up and put in a petition for a restraining order that would have allowed him to coach the bowl game.  The hearing on this was supposed to be this morning.  Just prior to the hearing, Mike Leach’s lawyer was handed a letter which said that Mike Leach was fired effective immediately.  When this letter was read aloud in the courtroom, several Texas Tech fans said that they would not be renewing their season tickets.

Turns out, Mike Leach had a clause in his contract that gave him a sizeable bonus if he was still the coach as of December 31.  In light of this, it is clear that Texas Tech wanted to unload him before this bonus kicked in.

The only way that things could have gone down like this is if Ashton Kutcher was in on this at some point.  I am fully expecting him to come up to Mike Leach and say, “YOU JUST GOT PUNK’D!!!!!”

Seriously though, it seems as if somebody at Texas Tech had it in for Mike Leach.  The whole thing went through so quickly, and at no point was Mike Leach given any opportunity for due process.  Somebody at Texas Tech has been wanting Mike Leach gone for a long time, and when this Adam James thing came up they jumped all over it like white on rice.  They especially wanted to hurry up and get him out before they had to pay him any of his bonus.

Mike Leach just got punk’d.  That’s all there is to it.

The Monday Melange 12.28.09: Aggie Jokes, Lindsay Lohan, Kanye West

–Just wondering:  Why does Lindsay Lohan waste so much time and money and effort with rehab every 6 months or thereabouts when we all know she is going to go right back to her old tricks?  Seems that she would do much better to just accept who she is and apply for a job as a go-go dancer at one of the clubs she frequents.  She might as well; her acting career isn’t exactly going anywhere these days.  Neither is her singing career.

–Wouldn’t it do your heart good to see Kanye West get punk’d?  Here you are:

–As a Georgia fan I don’t get this opportunity very often, seeing as Georgia doesn’t play Texas A&M very often, so I am going to make the most of this.

How many Aggies does it take to screw in a lightbulb?  Five–one to hold the bulb and four to turn the house.

These two Aggies were walking on Bourbon Street when they saw a sign in one of the shops which said “Caribbean Cruises–$50”.  They went inside to check it out and paid the man their $50.  The man hit them over the head with a baseball bat, shoved them into an inner tube, and pushed them out into the Industrial Canal.  They floated down the river and out into the Gulf of Mexico.  Long about lunchtime the next day, they finally came to.  One Aggie said to the other, “Man I’m hungry.  Do they serve lunch on this cruise?”  The other Aggie said, “No, they didn’t last year.”

Texas A&M tried to start a water polo team, but they had to give it up because the horses drowned.

Did you hear about the Aggie who tried to make pineapple upside-down cake?  First he tried to turn the oven over.

How about the two Aggies who tried to go skiing but had to give up because they couldn’t get the boat up the mountain?

Or the skeleton that they just found in a closet of one of the dorm rooms?  It was the 1968 hide-and-go-seek champion.

Merry Christmas

In those days Caesar Augustus issued a decree that a census should be taken of the entire Roman world…. And everyone went to his own town to register.

So Joseph also went up from the town of Nazareth in Galilee to Judea, to Bethlehem the town of David, because he belonged to the house and line of David. He went there to register with Mary, who was pledged to be married to him and was expecting a child. While they were there, the time came for the baby to be born, and she gave birth to her firstborn, a son. She wrapped him in cloths and placed him in a manger, because there was no room for them in the inn.

And there were shepherds living out in the fields nearby, keeping watch over their flocks at night. An angel of the Lord appeared to them, and the glory of the Lord shone around them, and they were terrified. But the angel said to them, “Do not be afraid. I bring you good news of great joy that will be for all the people. Today in the town of David a Savior has been born to you; he is Christ the Lord. This will be a sign to you: You will find a baby wrapped in cloths and lying in a manger.

Suddenly a great company of the heavenly host appeared with the angel, praising God and saying,

“Glory to God in the highest,
and on earth peace to men on whom his favor rests.”

When the angels had left them and gone into heaven, the shepherds said to one another, “Let’s go to Bethlehem and see this thing that has happened, which the Lord has told us about.”

So they hurried off and found Mary and Joseph, and the baby, who was lying in the manger. When they had seen him, they spread the word concerning what had been told them about this child, and all who heard it were amazed at what the shepherds said to them. But Mary treasured up all these things and pondered them in her heart. The shepherds returned, glorifying and praising God for all the things they had heard and seen, which were just as they had been told. (Luke 2:1-20)

Merry Christmas to all, and to all a good night.

Pat K on the Christmas Wars

Today I would like to direct your attention to a post over at Michael Spencer’s blog.  This one is from guest blogger Pat K of New Reformation Press, and it is entitled “Why I Don’t Participate in the Christmas Wars“.

Are you one of those who gets upset when the store clerk says “Happy holidays” instead of “Merry Christmas”?  Do you see the lack of manger scenes on courthouse property as evidence that our culture is losing the Christian roots and meaning of Christmas?  If so, then this post is for you.  Take another look from a fresh perspective–things aren’t as bad as you think.

The Monday Melange 12.21.09: More Bad Bulls, Tiger Woods

–This video of Jarrett Jack tying his shoes is so funny that I have to put it up here again.

Jarrett Jack of the Raptors gets the ball, puts it on his hip, and then bends over to tie his shoes.  No one from the Bulls attempts to steal the ball at this time.  No one from the Bulls even has a clue that attempting to steal the ball in this situation might be a good idea.

–Tiger Woods:  Pimpin ain’t easy, but somebody gotta do it.

–Guess Tiger Woods decided he wanted to be an “international playa” in something other than golf.

–Wonder if this guy was able to teach Tiger Woods a thing or two about pimping and macking?  (This would be Pastor Manning, who preached a sermon that made the rounds of Youtube a few months back in which he talked all about pimping and macking and how Obama was a “long-legged mack daddy”.)

–Since the original Pastor Manning “mack daddy” sermon now appears to be gone from Youtube, here is another talk which will give you a flavor for the kind of stuff that this guy preaches:

–While we’re looking at videos, here are a couple of videos which include quotes from the original “mack daddy” sermon:

–So Georgia is still looking for a new defensive coordinator.  Don’t know too much about how this is going, except that Bud Foster is not coming.  Vic Koening of Kansas, rumored as a possible candidate, is instead going to Illinois.  But he changed his mind and decided to come to Georgia after all, if you believe everything you hear in the Twittersphere.  Well, it turns out that he is in fact going to Illinois.

–Philippians 4:4-7 says “Rejoice in the Lord always.  I will say it again:  Rejoice!  Let your gentleness be evident to all.  The Lord is near.  Do not be anxious about anything, but in everything, by prayer and petition, with thanksgiving, present your requests to God.  And the peace of God, which transcends all understanding, will guard your hearts and your minds in Christ Jesus.”  Evangelicals can’t go anywhere near this passage without making it sound like a set of principles on how to live a life that pleases God and that God will bless, a series of steps which one must complete successfully in order to achieve the desired outcome, which is God’s peace.  But what if this passage is something different entirely?  What if, instead of just good advice on how to achieve God’s peace, we see this passage as something which points us directly toward the Gospel?  Read this post by Chaplain Mike Mercer over at Michael Spencer’s blog, entitled “Gospel Exhortations”.

–So how’s the weather in Amundsen-Scott Station, Antarctica?  High:  -13.  Low:  -22.  Windchill:  -36.  Next Sunday, it’s supposed to get up to -9.  Balmy.

Fourth Week of Advent: What Is Advent All About?

[If you wish to catch up on my previous Advent posts, here is week one, here is week two, and here is week three.]

On this, the fourth and final week of Advent, we are going to do things a little differently.  Today we are going to trot out a series of readings from the Old Testament and the Gospels which illustrate what Advent is all about, namely God’s redemptive plan for humanity which culminates in the birth of Jesus Christ on Christmas Day, which we will celebrate in just a few more days.

We will start with a reading from the Gospel of John which gets right to the heart of the matter:

In the beginning was the Word,
and the Word was with God,
and the Word was God.

He was with God in the beginning.
Through him all things were made;
without him nothing was made that has been made.
In him was life, and that life was the light of men.
The light shines in the darkness, but the darkness has not understood it.  (John 1:1-5) Continue reading “Fourth Week of Advent: What Is Advent All About?”

Six Floors of Sunday School…Why?

Today I would like to direct your attention to a post from a guest blogger over at Michael Spencer’s site entitled “Six Floors of Sunday School…to what end?

This post is for all of you who think that serving or volunteering actively in your church is the only acceptable way in which to use your gifts and live your life for God’s purposes.  The author, Pat K. of New Reformation Press, recounts how he struggled with this very issue through his life as a Christian and how it ultimately led him to drop out of church altogether.  He ultimately found balance in the Lutheran view of vocation, which says that God has placed each of us uniquely in whatever situation in life we find ourselves in.  Each of us has unique responsibilities associated with that situation in life, and by fulfilling those responsibilities faithfully, each of us brings glory and honor to God.

This view was a necessary corrective to the belief floating around in the Catholic Church at the time of the Reformation that you could only honor God by serving as a priest, monk, or nun.  And it is a necessary corrective to the view floating around evangelicalism nowadays that you can only serve God faithfully by being actively involved in serving at your church.  Not that serving actively at your church is a bad thing; it is just not the only way to serve and honor God.

Read “Six Floors of Sunday School…to what end?

The Monday Melange 12.14.09: Bad Bulls, Charlie Brown, and Charlie Weis

–Want to know just how bad the Chicago Bulls are this year?  In this game, Jarrett Jack of the Toronto Raptors actually stops to tie his shoe, putting the ball on his hip while doing so.  No one from the Bulls attempts to steal the ball while Jack is tying his shoe.  No one from the Bulls even has a clue that attempting to steal the ball in that situation might be a good idea.

No, I’m not kidding.  Watch this video and see for yourself.

–For your information, people, this is NOT the season of Christmas.  It is the season of Advent.  Christmas season does not start until Christmas Day.  It lasts for the next twelve days.  You know the song “The Twelve Days of Christmas”?  This is not just a cute kids’ song that somebody came up with a couple of centuries back.  There really are twelve days in the Christmas season.  Once upon a time it used to be traditional to give one gift on each day of the Christmas season.  The final day of the Christmas season is Epiphany, when we celebrate the comimg of the three wise men to visit Jesus.  (Just so you know, it did not take them twelve days to travel from Persia or wherever they came from to Bethlehem.  We just celebrate it twelve days after we celebrate the birth of Jesus.  More likely, it took about a year or thereabouts to make the journey, and by the time they saw the baby Jesus he was actually a toddler.)

–For those of you who did not get to see “A Charlie Brown Christmas” when it was on this year, here it is in its entirety courtesy of Youtube.  Part 1:

Part 2:

and Part 3:

–Charlie Weis, it would very much behoove you to just drop completely and totally off the face of the earth right about now.  This bit about outing Pete Carroll for sleeping with some grad student in Malibu, then claiming that you were just speaking in generalities, just ain’t funny.  You’re gone from Notre Dame; just deal with it.

–So Notre Dame is looking for a new head coach?  Big deal.  (Well…it is a big deal to me because I want them to come and get Urban Meyer the hell out of our division.)  The only reason why it is a big deal is that you people make it a big deal.  Notre Dame still fancies themselves an elite program because they were an elite program for much of the 40s, 50s, 60s, and 70s.  And you people still continue to go along with it.  But have you taken a look at what Notre Dame has done on the field lately?  Honestly, people.  Do you think that is an elite program?  I don’t think so.

–So I hear Lane Kiffin is going to be in town here in a couple of weeks.  Shouldn’t be too hard to find him; he’ll be the guy surrounded by “hostesses”.  Actually, so will Tiger Woods but I don’t think he’s planning to come to the Peach Bowl.

–What?  Lane Kiffin in hot water again?  Why am I not surprised?

–Some unsolicited advice for Lane Kiffin:  It is not a good idea to come into a new league–especially one as competitive as the SEC–running your mouth.  Especially if you plan to cheat.  Because it will come back to bite you in the end.

–Mark Richt:  Use this.  Kiffin has just handed you a rocket launcher to use against him in recruiting.  If you know what is good for you, you will use the hell out of it.

UPDATE: That hot water Lane Kiffin is in just got a little hotter.  An SI.com photo just surfaced which shows that Tennessee “hostesses” did in fact have contact with two Tennessee recruits at Byrnes High School.  If it turns out that the “hostesses” were there under orders from Kiffin or anyone else on his staff or in the Tennessee football program, then this thing could get much more serious.

Third Week of Advent: Why Do We Need Advent?

[If you wish to catch up on my previous Advent posts, here is week one, and here is week two.]

Today I wish to take up the question of why we need Advent.  Several reasons:

First, we need Advent to put us into the proper frame of mind and spirit to celebrate Christmas.  Do you really think that you can just go on living your life, business as usual, and then show up at your church on Christmas Eve (or whenever your church has their big Christmas service) and then–bam, you’re ready to celebrate Christmas?

Okay, so we don’t do it like that.  The world celebrates Christmas by starting in August or September or whenever they start putting up Christmas decorations in the stores, and then just going nonstop–right through Halloween, right through Thanksgiving, right through December, and by the time we finally get to Christmas we are all Christmas-ed out and just don’t have anything left in the tank.  And after Christmas we are left with nothing except a whopping pile of credit card bills for all the Christmas gifts we got, and a boatload of regret or whatever it is that we feel when we know that we missed something, that another Christmas has passed and all we have to show for it is this boatload of gifts and credit card bills.  Now do you really want to go there?  Hmmmm???

Didn’t think so.

What Advent does for us is put us in a mood of waiting and anticipation.  We are not celebrating Christmas prematurely like the rest of the world, even though we still go to all the Christmas parties and do all the Christmas shopping and enjoy all the Christmas lights and decorations.  Instead we are in a mood of waiting, reflecting and anticipating the coming of our long-promised savior Jesus Christ which we will celebrate on Christmas.  Advent gives us space to step back from all the craziness of the world during this time of year and quiet our souls.  As crazy as the world gets in the weeks and months leading up to Christmas, God knows we need that.  And when Christmas comes, we are ready to start celebrating Christmas–not all Christmas-ed out and wondering what the hell happened, like the rest of the world.

But there is an even more basic reason why we need Advent.  I touched upon it last week.  It is this:  We need Jesus.

We need Advent because we need Jesus. Continue reading “Third Week of Advent: Why Do We Need Advent?”

Les Miserables 31: A Place for Convictions

It is in these upcoming chapters that Victor Hugo ramps up his critique of the French court system of his day.

Jean Valjean (aka Father Madeleine) has just stepped into the courtroom after an excruciating deliberation over whether or not he would give himself up in place of Champmathieu.  Now, let us look at Victor Hugo’s first impression of the scene inside the courtroom at Arras:

It was a rather large space, dimly lit, filled in turn with noise and silence, where all the machinery of a criminal trial was unfolding with its petty yet solemn gravity, in the midst of the crowd.

At one end of the hall, where he happened to be, judges in threadbare robes were distractedly biting their fingernails or closing their eyelids; at the other end was a rabble in rags; there were lawyers in all sorts of positions; soldiers with honest, hard faces; old, stained wainscoting, a dirty ceiling, tables covered with serge, more nearly yellow than green; doors blackened by fingermarks; tavern lamps giving off more smoke than light, hanging on nails in the paneling; candles in brass candlesticks on the tables; everywhere shadows, ugliness, sadness; and from this emanated an austere and august impression; for men felt there the presence of that great humane thing called law, and that great divine thing called justice.

Continue reading “Les Miserables 31: A Place for Convictions”