Category Archives: Blogging

Christian Examines Faith Through Darth Vader, Foul Language

Do you like strange religious writing? The kind without cliches? That hits pressure points you didn’t know you had, sometimes popping joints back into alignment, other times throwing your back out? How about religious writing that’s NSFW, i.e., tosses around a few swear words for effect?

The Cynic Testifies is a blog of mine. It chronicles the thoughts and experiences of the last person I ever expected to become a Jesus Freak:



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Spackle Media Launches Skrib Magazine

Spackle Media today launched Skrib Magazine, a writing website geared towards freelance writers, publishing professionals, and lovers of all things scribed. It focuses on the art and profession of writing, balancing on its many splayed hands the silver platters of industry news one-offs, protracted confessions on the writing life, interviews with established authors, and just what it means to craft a passage that taps the heart of author and reader.

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Apparently Someone Thinks This Blog Has Hit The Big Time (HA!)

Trolls happen. It’s a fact of social media.

What is a troll? A troll is a person who harasses people online. They attempt to evoke an emotional response. They target a person and they generally do not stop until they have had a few laughs at someone else’s expense. Without getting into any gory details, I can assure you that trolling has sometimes ended very badly in real life – either for the target or for the troll himself/herself.

Obviously that’s boring.

This blog has officially been hit by its first troll. You don’t need to read the comment that was posted twice. I can tell you it was somewhat creative but definitely mean-spirited. It was intended to discourage me and others from participating in Westward Invasion 2009. The troll knows that some people are easily frightened. It is an interesting psychological phenomenon, I will say that much.

But just because it’s interesting or entertaining doesn’t make it worthwhile. As I stated in my response to the comments (now deleted) I have no problem with censorship. None whatsoever. On the Internet it’s called comment moderation. That’s where I get to delete any comment I want.

Well, since I don’t feel like dealing with it, I’m instituting automatic comment moderation on this blog. I will approve any and all comments that agree with me, disagree with me, make fun of someone or something, opine in a loud manner, speak in a soft tone, lampoon me, encourage people, offer constructive criticism, or pretty much anything else. I will even approve a comment if it is completely off-topic.

I will not approve spam or trolling.

We clear? All good? Let the good times troll. I mean roll.

A Social Media Experiment on the Grand Scale: Westward Invasion 2009

What is Westward Invasion 2009?
Short answer: An emigration. An adventure. An erasure of the boundary between online and offline. A social media experiment on the grand scale. A reality show that is actually worth watching, broadcast in a decentralized manner in real time by you, sponsored by visionaries.

Clear answer: Westward Invasion is an emigration and adventure opportunity for me and you. I am moving to California. Some of you are coming with me. Others will just travel with us for all or part of the journey. We’re packing light and taking the slow route, curling a path all over the West, visiting places both mundane and fantastical. Invaders who live in the West will act as hosts for a day. Those who don’t want to participate IRL (In Real Life) can do so virtually. Sponsors are invited to pay attention.

The whole thing will be blogged and vlogged here and elsewhere. I am inviting everyone I know on Twitter, Facebook, Digg, this blog, your blogs, and other networks to participate on some level. How far can social media go to make things happen in the real world? Is it possible to erase the line between online and offline?

I invite you to join Westward Invasion 2009. No commitment is implied when you join the network. Just get your face up there, tell us about yourself, share some of your own ideas, poke around, ask questions, get excited about possibilities. Everything is explained there – inasmuch as Westward Invasion can be explained. We are in build-and-brainstorm mode, so I am wide open to ideas.

While you’re at it, get with me on Twitter if you’re into that sort of thing. I like it.

Talk to you soon. Be fierce.

Should I Run Ugly Google Ads Here?

I used to run Google ads on this blog before I really started devoting my time to posting. I took the ads down because

  1. they are ugly,
  2. I don’t need the income, and
  3. the income would only be a few bucks if anything, since I only get a hundred visitors a day here.

What do you think I should do at this point? Leave things the way they are? Or do you think I should put some ads up and try to make some money?