Enviropundit: Green Building Blog: Distributed Grids

Enviropundit: Green Building Blog: Distributed Grids

Those of you who know me would say that I am rather conservative on a lot of issues. On this one I’m not so much. I think that alternatives to the way we generate power, reduce waste, and reduce the amount of raw materials that we waste is a great idea. I saw this and think that its a good start. I wish we would put more into fuel cells and hydrogen research, as well.

CPR Class

I am now 2/3 of the way through to becoming a CPR instructor. The first step was to take the CPR class for Healthcare Providers. The next, and this is what I have been doing for the past two days, was the instructors class. The last thing is to student teach with an instructor/trainer and get final approval.

The class itself was pretty good. My only problem was the rust that had to be shaken off of me. That kind of created a confidence problem after the first day. The rust was pretty evident as I blew a written exam that I had taken before and then the instructor on my skills test, who instructed me before, pulled me aside and said that while I passed, I needed to work on them. Needless to say, I was feeling kind of down on Wednesday on the drive back to the office. Although, I did a Lectio Divina. I seemed drawn to Psalm 23 and the phrase “He restores my soul,” grabbed me. So I meditated on that on the way back. About the time that I passed Kalkaska, a wave of peace passed over me.

The next day, I continued the meditation and it occurred to me to pray for clarity of thought. That’s really what I wanted. Clarity of mind, so that I could do my best. Well as the day went on, the instructor talked about examination and remediation for students that didn’t pass their exams (students that we will teach). As he spoke about it, I realized that’s what was done with me and that I was still doing a good job. I did my presentation to the class on 1-adult rescuer and while it wasn’t perfect it went pretty well. The great thing came when I took the instructor test and I got a 48 out of 50. Very cool. I was praising God all the way home.

Not everything goes as we want, but if you trust God, He will bring you through the fire. I realize that this was a pretty small case, but If we would always keep these in mind during the larger episodes of life we may have better outcomes than we could possibly imagine.

As I was typing this the office called and asked if I could be available for work at 4 or 5 am. Seems that we may be expecting some severe weather overnight. I can’t wait for the snow. I want to ski downhill really fast right now!

South Pole video 10 years after!

As I type this, I am in the process of dubbing my VHS tape of my year at the South Pole onto DVD. For those of you who don’t know the price on a combination DVR/DVD writer went below $500 so I jumped on it. Okay in a year it will probably be $50 bucks, but my tapes they were aging and the one I am dubbing today is one of those personal momentos like tapes of the kids or such that is a great personal treasure. If only to signify not only a thrill of a life time, but a great turning point in my life, but I digress.

Anyway, last week I dubbed the video from VHS to the DVR (Digital Video Recorder, nothing more than a large computer hard drive that acts like a VCR) part of the recorder. I have wanted to write it to DVD for permanent storage, but if I’m dubbing I can’t use the TV for the time that it is writing, that’s kind of how I have it wired. So I have about an hour and a half to dub the full contents to the DVD and finalize it so it will play on any player. Very cool.

Watching this video (actually a string of short videos and then the main feature), has brought back all of the memories from 10 years ago when I began my journey. As I said in earlier post, 10 years ago on the 23rd of October (last Saturday) I flew from Christchurch, New Zealand (a place that I would love to return to visit, Lord willing) to McMurdo Station, Antarctica. Now 10 years ago today, as I look at the large Antarctic map on my wall in front of me with Mom’s notations of dates when flew in and flew out of Antarctica, I flew to The Amundsen-Scott South Pole Station to begin my 1 year retreat.

It’s hard to believe that it has been 10 years since and in that time I have ventured back for one summer season at the Pole, joined the National Weather Service and have travelled around the US in those 10 years. Of course, I have travelled other places in the world, prior to 1994 with the Navy, but those are other stories. It’s amazing to me the places that God has allowed me to go.

I try not to mention the South Pole too much these days, as I sometimes feel its just me trying to be semi-important, but I will if I think it is important to the context of a story I am telling. However, those stories are being substituted with more recent memories as even I get tired of telling them to a certain extent.

I’m amazed

At how bad my grammar and spelling can be sometimes. I didn’t notice it until I started blogging. I reread some of my posts and the next thing I realize is that I’ve put in the word write instead of right or some such thing. Maybe I should have someone come over and proofread my stuff…Nah…That would mean that I’d have to clean my house. I’m just a slacker at heart. ūüėČ

Slackers Unite!

My brother in law Brendon has put together a manifesto on why slackers are good workers. He’s hoping to write a book on it. This is his first step. I think that he’s right by the way, but I’m a slacker as well.

Mids are almost done!

Well, as I sit here this morning on a short break from doing data collection and aviation forecasting, I realized that I only have one more midnight left. This is due to the fact that I will be going to Traverse City to take the CPR instructor class so that I can instruct the office on how to do CPR and other life saving things related to the heart and lungs. I had to take the Basic Life Savers course for health professionals last spring so this will complete the certification. Of course that means I can also teach this to others, but the primary reason was for the office. I just have to make sure that I teach 4 classes every 2 years to keep my certification, as well as take a recertification class. I think this is pretty cool. I would like to take the public first aid course that the AHA does as well. I just keep forgetting to look for when the class is being taught locally.

This thing with wanting to learn about First Aid and life saving things comes from 2 things.

  1. Dad used to be an EMT and I found the job fascinating
  2. My propensity to go hiking and backpacking in the backcountry

There are other reasons but those are the two that are at the heart of it. I’d probably go and get certified as an EMT, if I had the time and a way to practice the skills. However, working a rotating in a weather office kind of precludes that.

By the way, using blogger.com for my blog has been a cinch and I am slowly finding new things to tweak it.

Some Musical Commentary

As those who know me, I am an avid music listener. You can see some of my current favorites in my profile. One band that is not on that list is the band FM Static. It is the brain child of two of the guys in Thousand Foot Krutch (TFK). One of their songs has become one of my more favorite songs as of late. Just to give you an idea of the band, most of the songs, lyrically, talk about teenage problems, but I have been finding adult things in the disc as well. The song that has been on my mind as of late is the song “Something to Believe In.” The song is about how churches sometimes make kids feel like it’s “teenage hunting season” during the school year. It is an easy thing to do if your motivations to spread the Gospel is off the mark. However, the part of the song that I have been drawn to is this section:

And if you don’t know what im talking about,

It’s probably better cause im working out,

Don’t wanna spend my lifetime figurin out,

That i coulda just said one prayer

And if you know what i’m talking about,

Then together were both working it out,

Don’t wanna spend my lifetime figuring out

I missed the point now it’s over

I’ve felt that I’ve come through one of those times where I have worked it out. I was on my way home earlier and I am feeling that my upcoming birthday is going to be another mark in the life of change. Let me explain…When I was 18-19 years old, the change in my life was going into adulthood. When I was 28-29, I changed the direction in my life by dumping all of the relationships and garbage of the previous 10 years (well not all of my friendships, just the harmful ones). That also happened to correspond to my time in Antarctica, Which, by the way 10 years ago today, I landed at McMurdo Station on Ross Island to start my year at the South Pole. Very therapeutic. Now, as I look back over the last 10 years, I now have a better handle on the Wesley theology term of sanctifying grace, as I have seen some miraculous changes and some very subtle changes in my life. It would take to long to type all of it here, but suffice it to say that I am at more peace with my life now than I have ever been. It just took the last 20 years to appreciate the rough spots. Most of which, I caused from making bad decisions. So as far as I am concerned, I feel that I can rewrite the last part of that song by saying that while I am still working it out, I haven’t missed the point and it is far from over.

Now it is time to do dishes and get my lunch ready for work. Mids can be such a drag sometimes…

And by the way TFK rulz!!!!

Just Waking up

The thing about working on midnights, which I’m doing now, is that you wake up in the evening. It seems kind of a shame in the summer as the sun begins to set as you are waking up. In the case of the late fall and winter, it stays dark all of the time while I am awake.

So when is it being too nosy?

There are those who may be reading this particular entry and asking themselves, “does he mean me?” The answer is no. What I’m referring to here is what questions are appropriate for me to ask at times. This all stems from those little portions of my formerly anxious self that still haven’t fully been excorcised. In a way this is my way of trying to get past those things that hold me back without causing some people uncomfortable with my wanting to get to know them. You know it is easy to have a relationship with God. You can ask Him anything and He won’t feel uncomfortable with you. People are another matter.

Part of this worrying goes back many years ago, when I was dating a woman in Grand Rapids. She claimed that I didn’t ask enough questions of her for us to be communicating. I didn’t think so. Though I was usually paralyzed in my fear as to what was an appropriate question. I’m not so much paralyzed by such things in most cases now, but it can happen.

I look at my experiences with the youth group and I run into the same thing there. I want to show that I care about their lives and activities (and I don’t think that kids get enough of this in our culture now), but I must balance the fact that I’m not their parent and that I don’t need to know everything nor am I supposed to. However, its hard to have a friendship with anyone without talking, discussing and truly learning about the other.

However, I like to talk and if I meet someone that I like to hang with, that can mean trouble. Well maybe not trouble, but after while I begin to feel like I’m hanging around too much and asking too many questions and that I would be monopolizing their time at the expense of others.

So I’m wondering, when is it being too nosy?

(I’m beginning to think that no matter how old you are you still suffer from the same insecurities that you did when you were a teenager. Just look what I just wrote!)



I found this blog a couple of weeks ago. It looks to be of an Iraqi doctor that lives in Bagdad. I kind of use this as just another source of what is going on. He has brought up some interesting points in the past and today’s article on the clerics accepting democracy looks hopeful if anything.