Blog Archives

Links

Here’s another set of links for your improvement and amusement. Enjoy your weekend.

Is Tide washing powder useless?

Turning the air blue: Clive James muses on the ineffectiveness of profanity.

The Word Magazine Album Atlas plots the locations where famous album sleeves were photographed. It’s the magic of Google Maps.

Jeremy Woolf on five social media trends to look out for.

Starbucks are becoming increasingly Fairtrade-friendly in the UK. Now that’s a miracle!

They must have gone on the music, more than anything else, but In the bleak midwinter has been named best carol by choirmasters. I don’t recognise half the titles in the top ten. Also, BBC News published this story under ‘entertainment’.

The Paperless Christmas Advent calendar is back, and goes live on Advent Sunday (this Sunday, that is) at 10:00 am GMT. Similarly, see the Church of England’s Why Are We Waiting, with daily updates.

Ben Witherington on why it’s not biblical to seek an airtight theological system.

Santa Claus does exist. They said so at church.  Via blogs4god

Podcasts

Most mornings I go for a walk after the school run. As I stride out, I gaze upon the architectural wonder of our 1980s housing estate.

No, that isn’t the reason. It’s blood pressure. Longstanding friends will know how I used to have a dog. While he was still vigorous, he used to take me for a daily walk. He was a lively, if obscure breed in this country – a Finnish Spitz. When he died three years ago, I started putting on weight. Eventually, a medical paid for by the church nearly two years ago raised concerns. To cut a long story (largely filled with my procrastination) short, my prescription is mild medication and regular brisk walks.

But how to make the walks interesting? I decided that an MP3 player would make it worthwhile. Not being able to stretch to an iPod (or at least, not to the 160GB model I would have wanted for my CD collection), I bought a phone with an MP3 player.

Unfortunately, the Sony Ericsson W810i is a pain in the neck, despite outstanding reviews. The software on the PC always crashes, and SE technical support tried to blame other software I had installed (not that they could say which). When you transfer CDs to it, the tracklisting is scrambled. The first track may be put at the end, they may be put in reverse or even random order.

But it’s OK with podcasts. You only have one ‘track’ there. Even the W810i can’t foul that up.

So I’ve started to entertain and edify myself by listening to podcasts while I walk. For music, the weekly production from The Word magazine is entertaining and informative, as is their occasional ‘Backstage’ interview. On the latter, I’ve heard conversations with folkie Pete Atkin and his famoust lyricist Clive James, and a sci-fi author whose name escapes me, but who believes in ‘mathematical Platonism’, jsut at the time when Platonism is long discredited in theology.

Christian-wise, I’ve subscribed to the Sunday talks from HTB and heard the odd decent sermon. Godpod from HTB’s St Paul’s Theological Centre has so far been a little worthy but dull. Less intellectual on the surface but LOL-funny has been the podcast from the American show Steve Brown Etc. Other pleasures await from the Internet Monk, including his coffee cup apologetics show.

These are just my early explorations. What do you listen to? Any recommendations? Anything to avoid?