Mar 14 2011

I didn’t buy it, but I wanted to [day 292]

I met Guy Kawasaki yesterday at a book signing.  Not only is he an extremely talented communicator and writer, he’s just a really nice person.  Just look on Twitter, hashtag #guykawasaki, and you’ll see what I mean.  Now I’ve been thinking, it’s kind of odd to go to a book signing without a book.  Knowing that he would be at SXSW, I decided to go to the used book store to find his new book.  I knew my chances were slim to none on finding his new book Enchantment, but I thought maybe I could find one of his older books.  I’ve been following Guy for a long time on friendfeed and he always has great stuff out there.

I had to go to a few locations before I found one of his books.  I found The Art of the Start. I bought it and I was happy that I would have a book for him to sign, although I wondered what I would say to him as I asked him to sign my not-so-new book with a red half price sticker on the front.

Yesterday, I found myself in a long line of people to have my book signed.  It’s pretty safe to say that I was the only weirdo in line without a fresh-off-the-press copy of Enchantment.  Soon, it was my turn.  I proceeded to the table and quickly explained my story.  “I’m doing a year of no retail shopping, so I can’t buy your new book, even though I really want to.  I bought a used copy of one of your older books, so could you sign this one?”  First, he laughed a bit and said he wouldn’t last a week without shopping.  Then he asked where I got the book.  I told him I bought it at a used book store and showed him the bright red price tag on the front.  He then proceeded to tell me that The Art of the Start never came out in paperback.  Mine is a paperback.  Either it’s a illegitimate copy or an unmarked advanced reading copy, intended for bookstores.  Either way, he said that was the best reason he’s ever heard from anyone as to why they’re not buying his book.

He signed my book and he even allowed me to have a photo taken with him.  I have to say, if there were more people in the world like Guy, the world would be a noticeably better place.  I plan to buy his new book and I found 3 used copies on amazon.com.  If anyone should teach us about enchantment, it should be someone that understands it and lives that way.  Guy seems to get it.

If you’re interested in his new book, here’s the amazon link.  There’s 2 used ones left, the 3rd one is mine, so leave it there.  😉

Enchantment: The Art of Changing Hearts, Minds and Actions

I had the opportunity to just buy a new copy of his book, and I wanted to, but I didn’t.  I might be waiting a little longer to read his amazing book (prejudged from his awesome session at SXSW), but it goes to show that with a little pre-planning, you can have what you want while saving money and being good to the environment.  Thanks Guy!


Jul 4 2010

the challenge: day 37 & 39 [God's Own Junkyard]

Just to make things fun and chaotic, I’ll make this post from 2 non-sequential days.

I visited this awesome little used bookstore.  I would have photos to show, had I remembered to put the memory card in my camera.  Luckily I didn’t take too many photos before I discovered my critical error.  The bookstore caught my eye, as I couldn’t miss an old house and a porch filled with books.  We stopped since they sell used books and that’s allowed.  All of the books on the porch were $0.25 each, and if you’re one of those ‘after hours’ shoppers, you can just take your books and leave your money in the box.  I found 3 books outside, but the great treasure was waiting for me inside the store.

After browsing for a while, I found a section in the corner called ‘interesting stuff’.  There were 2 shelves of interesting stuff, so I knew I would have to stop and read all of the titles.  And there it was.  A copy of Peter Blake’s God’s Own Junkyard: The Planned Deterioration of America’s Landscape.  Now honestly, I’ve never heard of this book before, but I loved the title.  The book is missing the dust jacket, but is in good condition otherwise.  The price?  $1.00.  Yep, that fits in my budget AND it’s used.  I found some copies of this book on amazon.com, 8 copies starting at $9.98 and one collector copy for $61.00.

This book was published in 1964, one of 17 books published by Peter Blake who was not only an author, but an architect as well.  He passed away in 2006 at the age of 86.  I haven’t read the book yet, but I’m starting it as soon as I finish this blog post.  It seems to me that he was born before his time, giving us an early warning of our American culture of carelessness and waste.

I bought this book with the intention of making an altered book, using modern day photos related to his old photos, showing the progression of progress.  I watched The Book of Eli the other night and I really can’t help but wonder how close we are to that world being a reality.  The one thing that stuck in my head was Eli saying, “…people carelessly wasted things that we kill for today.”  I have mixed feelings about making this book into an art project.  Maybe I need to make God’s Own Junkyard 2: The Continued Deterioration of America’s Landscape.

Off to read…

**ADDITION**

I was near the bookstore again, with my camera and a memory card this time… Here’s a photo of the bookstore.


Jun 15 2010

[book review] radical by david platt

  • Paperback: 240 pages
  • Publisher: Multnomah Books; 1 edition (May 4, 2010)
  • Amazon: Buy the book
  • Kindle version: Get it now
  • ISBN-10: 1601422210

Amazon.com review from June 14, 2010

Although I really like much of the content in this book, and I am glad I read it, I struggled some with the author’s communication style of ‘you need to do everything I’m saying’. He has many great points about taking back your faith from the american dream. I live in a city where the income average is twice that of the national average. I have a 1780 square foot home, which here is considered extremely small, yet I consider it very big. I drive my 14 year old car next to many new and much fancier cars. Over the past couple of years, and a lot lately, I really have to wonder why God has me in a place where people are living the american dream… times 2. I clearly don’t fit in here, or do I?

David gives many opinions, and many of them really good, but I feel like I still don’t know what he’s about. He gave some personal examples, but not enough for me see that he is completely sold out to his opinions and vision. Before this book, I read Shane Claiborne’s book The Irresistible Revolution: Living as an Ordinary Radical “Irresistible Revolution”, and it was clear by his stories and the way he communicated it, that he is sold out to his vision and beliefs. I do recommend reading this book, but I also recommend that you pray about God’s will for your life within the context of his thoughts.

The premise of the book is that everyone must make disciples everywhere in the world, no exceptions, and doing things locally is not enough. I will challenge this with a little different way of thinking. Yes, it would be great if everyone could go to other countries to help people. AND, he is right that we shouldn’t just send money and feel like we’ve accomplished something. First, I think God has a will for all of us to help, and when we all understand out how he wants us to be His hands and feet in the world, we should not ignore that. I think David is right that we should make sacrifices on some level and make helping the poor a priority, not a passing thing that might happen once a year at Christmas time or when you decided to clean out your closet and give away your discards. On page 130, he says, “What would happen together if we stopped giving our scraps to the poor and started giving surplus?” He is right, we should order our lives in way that allows us to help others. But if I don’t go out of the country, then I am not doing God’s work? I don’t believe that. I’m a single mom with a full time job and limited financial resources. I do go to Mexico on mission trips, although I hate calling them that, as these orphans we visit are family. I would love to go to Africa and many other places, but that’s just not a reality right now. So I can support someone who can go and I can also do many things here to support the impoverished locally. I’m not accepting the implied guilt trip. According to David, I am wrong.

I pray about what missions work I should be doing everyday, and not only that, I’m also teaching my kids to do the same. We might not be in other countries physically, but I’m not ignoring them. I know people are suffering globally and I can partner with people that are making a difference. My heart is with those people as well, and I think that’s what God is calling us to do. We should love everyone, be aware of global needs and not ignore them. These places are far away and they’re not in our day to day lives, and if we don’t look for them, chances are we will not ever see them. We have to be intentional about educating ourselves so we can reach out in the ways God has designed us to do just that.

I know this will end up being the longest book review ever to hit Amazon, so I’ll wrap it up. David’s challenges at the end of the book are this:

Pray for the entire world
Read through the entire Word
Sacrifice your money for a specific purpose
Spend your time in another context
Commit your life to multiplying community

I love these challenges! I read these and have started in a positive direction on all of them, but by praying through them and understanding what God wants from me and within my reality.

I had an idea from reading this, an idea about praying for the world, which I started last night with my kids. I’m doing a year of no retail shopping, which I’m blogging the process on […] (I’m only 19 days into it at the time of this review) Other than groceries and toiletries, I can purchase used stuff only, and only if needed. I went to the used bookstore and bought a world atlas. (used for $10. I would have purchased from Amazon, but I wanted to start my idea immediately) When my kids and I pray every night, we are now also praying for the people in a specific place every night. I realized my geography skills are… well, they suck. I could try to sugar coat that, but there’s no point. With the atlas, we can not only pray for people globally, but we can see where they live, learn more about them and better understand how we can help. I have every hope that we can visit some of these places someday and my kids have that desire too. They want to meet Angelo, our Compassion International sponsored child in Peru. How cool would that be? I have no idea if that could ever happen, but they continue to dream about it and I continue to support them in believing it could happen someday. We also write our name and date we prayed for places in the atlas.

So to sum it up, I recommend reading the book, there’s a lot of really good things to ponder. As a matter of fact, I have highlighted and underlined many things in this book and I will refer back to it. If you have the same struggle I did in relating to the author, read it anyway, consciously eliminating his opinions, but taking seriously his thoughts and ideas. Take his challenges too. The world would be a much better place if we all made some positive changes, even if it’s just a tiny one.


Jun 14 2010

[book review] trolls & truth by jimmy dorrell

This is an amazon.com book review I did on June 5th, 2010.

I’m not sure where I first heard about church under the bridge, but I needed to go check it out for myself. I drove down there with a friend to go to church a few months ago. I can honestly say I never thought I would drive 4 hours to go to church. If you haven’t been, it’s amazing and worth an even longer drive than that one.

When I met Jimmy, I had no idea he was the one that started church under the bridge. He was so welcoming and not one of those “untouchable people” that you can’t find or talk to.

I immediately bought his book as soon as I got back from my visit. He talks a lot in here about bringing church to the people. I’ve seen so many models of this lately, and it works! Talk about some radical Kingdom work.

Jimmy communicates some much needed change in the church world as a whole, but does it in a thought provoking way. I don’t see how anyone could read this and not make some positive changes for God’s Kingdom. And if you go to his church, you’re going to just fall in love with Dedrick.


Jun 14 2010

[book review] irresistible revolution by shane claiborne

I did a review of this book on amazon.com on June 5th, 2010.

This book makes me want to not only make some small changes, but change my whole life. There aren’t many book I would read a second time, but this is one of them. While reading this book, I decided one morning to take a one year challenge. It’s a small step, but you have to start somewhere.

I bought the domain name trashsociety.com a while back, with many different intentions of what I could do with it. We have so much waste in our American culture. We are raised to do anything and everything that will make our lives easier and more comfortable. Well I am finally uncomfortable with comfort and irritated with ease. There is so much suffering in the world and we can all make a difference by intentionally choosing to make some simple changes in the way we live.

A few months ago, I was channel flipping on my TV (my nice flat screen TV that I just really needed to buy with the monthly satellite TV package that everyone needs in order to live because we must be entertained if we’re awake, right?) and came across a show called Hoarders. If you haven’t seen this show, check it out. It’s a little bit like watching a wreck. It’s awful, quite disturbing and yet you want to look at it. I’ve watched many episodes of it and came to one conclusion. The only difference between these hoarders that are being showcased for reality show entertainment and the rest of us watching is that the rest of us don’t have a problem getting rid of our stuff. We buy stuff, lots of stuff and when we are tired of it, we give it away or worse yet, throw it away.

What’s the challenge? The challenge is no new stuff for one year. This means no shopping in retail stores, with the exception of groceries and toiletries. (I don’t want CPS taking my kids away for my radicalness) Groceries and toiletries are the only new things we will buy and will, in the process, learn better ways to make those purchases. The only places we will shop is thrift stores or resale shops. No major purchases either. Now the one small issue here is that sometimes I have to buy things at work for stage sets or marketing. I will still have to make those purchases because I need my job. (Or do I? Okay, a subject for another time)

I will be blogging this challenge at trashsociety.com. I can’t say enough about this book, but it’s a MUST READ. I wish I could buy one for every person I know! Yeah, I know, I can’t for a year. LOL