12/31/2006 03:04:00 pm

40 out of 52

Posted by Tom French |

I did 40 movies in 2006. This is them:

1. Broken Flowers
2. The Producers
3. Memoirs of a Geisha
4. Munich
5. North Country
6. Brokeback Mountain
7. Jarhead
8. The Aristocrats
9. Match Point
10. Inside Man
11. Tsotsi
12. American Dreamz
13. Kokoda
14. Block Party
15. Mission: Impossible 3
16. V for Vendetta
17. The Da Vinci Code
18. X-Men 3
19. Three Burials
20. Poseidon
21. Over the Hedge
22. Superman Returns
23. Thank You for Smoking
24. Pirates of the Caribbean 2
25. Miami Vice
26. The Sentinel
27. Fearless
28. United 93
29. An Inconvenient Truth
30. Kenny
31. Little Miss Sunshine
32. Step Up
33. Trust the Man
34. Children of Men
35. God on My Side
36. Borat
37. Casino Royale
38. Babel
39. The Prestige
40. Night at the Museum

I don't have much more to say about 2007. It was pretty good. I like my house and the people in it. And my family. And my work. And my friends. And my youth group. Yep.

I'd give the year 40 out of 52 too.

12/30/2006 11:58:00 pm

Putty

Posted by Tom French |

Spent the day location scouting with Matt. It was good hanging out with Matt for a day. He's a good man.

Then Commie House and the Gowies went Putt Putt golfing. I wasn't real good. But I got better.

I'm really enjoying all this time off. So much time spent doing nothing. It's wonderful. Hooray for the quiet time of year.

Perhaps tomorrow I'll do the movie list for the year.

Tonight I should sleep.

12/29/2006 01:10:00 am

Fame

Posted by Tom French |

I was in the video store in Enmore with Mil and Jem tonight and a man came up to me and said "Tom French?"

I replied "Yes". I had no idea who the man was.

"I read your blog sometimes."

Wow. Recognised in a video store.

Turns out he is a friend of Lesley's and he reads her blog. We didn't have much more of a conversation than that. He didn't ask me to sign anything. And I didn't find out his name. Oh well.

Hello Man in the Video Store.

Next time I meet a random off the street who recognises me from one of my many fame creating activities, I hope they get a photo with me and tell me they named their first child after me. That'd be pretty cool.

We ended up getting Fever Pitch, the 1997 one, not the Adam Sandler one. It wasn't very good. Colin Firth's character was an idiot who I spent the whole movie hoping the girl would break up with him and leave him for good. It doesn't say much for a romantic comedy when that happens. The Adam Sandler one, dare I say it, was actually much better.

And then Ryan, Martin and I watched Once Upon a Time in China which was cool. Rather silly in the silly Kung Fu movie kinda way, but much more enjoyable then the other one.

12/28/2006 12:53:00 am

Small Steps

Posted by Tom French |

My room cleaning efforts have led to me spending all day cleaning (with a movie, some book reading and eating in between) and finished now with my room looking almost exactly the same.

However if you look under the surface of the mess, things are a lot neater. Good on me.

Ryan and I watched The Prestige and it was great.

12/27/2006 03:38:00 pm

Aim High

Posted by Tom French |

I've set myself the goal of cleaning my room by the end of January. If I succeed in that I might aim to be in Parliment by the end of 2007.

It could happen.

12/26/2006 05:51:00 pm

Christmas Makes You Look Hot

Posted by Tom French |

Christmas 06.jpg

Auntie Lys, Me and Jo

12/25/2006 11:47:00 am

Merry

Posted by Tom French |

Christmas to you all.

I'm at Church and I just finished service number 5 in the 25 hour Church Service Marthathon. I did PowerPoint and I actually enjoyed it. I like PowerPoint. And seeing as I'm not sure the rest of my family made it to church, I'm happy I got to a Christmas day service.

Soon it's off to the Relis to do the cousins thing.

Last night I squeezed in a family do with Grandpa, Valentina and some wonderful extras. It was nice. Though short. I had only 2 hours between services.

Oh and Christmas with the house yesterday morning was lovely too. Hot chocolate and wonderful people. And good presents. It's all been very plesent.

I'm a little over the whole church service thing though.

But I won't be back here till Thursday! Hooray two days off! Merry Christmas!

12/23/2006 11:56:00 pm

So this is...

Posted by Tom French |

Christmas must be here because our lounge room is full of presents and micro sized nativity scenes. I wrapped all my presents. That must be a first because I don't think I've ever had everything wrapped before the 25th in my whole life.

Actually there is still one present to go, but it's strategically left unwrapped.

Today feels like Christmas Eve, because tomorrow is full of present giving and Church. Between now and midday on the 25th I will have been to 5 services. Hoi! I'll take my own comfy chair to church so I'm relaxed with all that servicing.

I have to do a talk at the family service tomorrow but I don't know what I'm going to say. I'm dry. I've done 9 different Christmas talks in the past 4 years. There are only so many worthwhile angles you can take. I'll figure something out.

Well one should sleep. It's Commie House Christmas in the morning. Hot Chocolates, Presents, and Communist Propaganda. Hooray!

12/23/2006 12:18:00 am

Robots

Posted by Tom French |

Transformers looks like it's gonna be real cool.

12/22/2006 11:59:00 pm

Modern Little

Posted by Tom French |

I was in The Little Modern Fish and Chip Shop today buying dinner and it was good to be back. They're the friendliest Greek couple in Fish and Chip Shop that I've ever met. Not that I've met too many of them. They recognised me even though I haven't been in for years, and asked me how I was. They asked if I was still working as a Youth Worker, and they told me that they saw the Gowies in the paper and that they were very beautiful. They asked if I still live in the area and inquired about the state of my love life.

I love the shops that remember you. The man at the Indian place in Westfield Hornsby always asks me how I'm finding life in Enmore and how my tooth is.

If I ever become a shop keeper I want to be like that. But I wouldn't be. I'm too shy.

12/22/2006 12:42:00 am

Ending

Posted by Tom French |

Year four of Youth Ministry at my church has ended with a pool party. I'm tired. As usual I really like the people in my youth group.

I spent a while playing Lock-On with two of the guys in my small group this afternoon. That was fun.

One day someone should invent a form of youth ministry that's all of the fun and none of the work.

I have to go away now and dream it all up again. I hope I can.

12/20/2006 12:20:00 am

Pop

Posted by Tom French |

In the past two days I've had emails from people in Tamworth and Kenya asking me if I'd be interested in coming to speak at various events. They found me through ChristianSpeakers.com.au.

To the Tamworth people I said I'd be keen and sent them some sample messages of mine. They may chose someone else to speak, but it's nice to be considered. The Kenyans I haven't written back to. This is because being asked to go to Kenya to speak is a pretty bizarre idea that's never crossed my mind before. But who knows what God is doing, so I'll pray and get back to that one soon.

12/20/2006 12:06:00 am

Too Late

Posted by Tom French |

Just after writing the last post about being tired I found a DVD in Ryan's room of Birth. So I thought "I'll just start watching this and turn it off and go to sleep." 98 minutes later, I finished the film and went to sleep. How silly.

However the film itself wasn't bad. After all the controversy about the film, it wasn't really a big deal. It was rather strange, Nicole Kidman falling in-love with a 10 year old and all. But it was rather sweet in the end. You'd know what I mean if you saw it. It wasn't romantic comedy sweet, though, no sir. There wasn't a Meg Ryan, Hugh Grant, or Tom Hanks to be seen, and thank God for that.

Today I didn't do much at all, and it was great. I did read a lot of U2 by U2 and I'm having a wonderful time.

12/19/2006 12:02:00 am

Too Early

Posted by Tom French |

I got up too early this morning, which meant I was tired. I've had trouble all day finishing sentences. I guess it comes with the

12/17/2006 11:49:00 pm

Hermeneuting

Posted by Tom French |

Church was really interesting tonight. We had Cafe Church which is usually evangelistic, but we didn't push it that way. So we did an evangelistic service but I'm not sure many people thought to invite friends. Jamie led worship at our church for the first time in perhaps years. It was good to have him back, if only for a special guest appearance.

I preached tonight. I'm not sure how I feel about it. I didn't really like the sermon. I'm not sure how other people view their sermons but I make a big deal of them. Every sermon I'm looking for magic (if you can say that). Each one feels like a new work of art that I'm putting on display. Or perhaps like a new film that I'm releasing. I'm always keenly aware that this could be the flop but I'm looking for greatness. Perhaps one day I'll find it.

I say this because nothing else in my life gets the same type of attention that a sermon does. But I went in tonight feeling under-prepared. And while a bad sermon that got thoroughly prepared is hard. A mediocre sermon that was completely under prepared feels a lot worse. I guess because it feels second rate, like it could have been great but it wasn't. Like Pop maybe.

But I had the choice between 4 days in Forster and an underworked sermon, or no holiday and a good sermon. I chose the holiday. And I think it was right, I needed the break. But that doesn't make the sermon feel any better.

What I did was grab an old sermon and re-work it evangelistically for a younger congregation. It all felt a bit messy and patched together. The old one was good. This one wasn't nearly as neat. I think I would have rathered work on a new one from scratch.

Preaching it was hard too. I think because the sermon was evangelistic but I knew most of the people hadn't come thinking evangelism, and 98% of the people in the room were Christians.

Usually you preach evangelisticly and you can feel the room coming with you a bit. They're all cheering you on because they want to see people become Christians too. But tonight felt different. People were tireder, less interested, in party mode, the sermon wasn't pitched at them, and they didn't have any friends they wanted to see saved. It is an odd feeling preaching an evangelistic sermon to a room full of Christians. It's preaching to the converted.

So that's my sermon debrief. I guess I just had to get that off my chest. Now I'll go to bed. I'm looking forward to the next time I preach. Always am I guess.

12/17/2006 12:34:00 am

Too Late

Posted by Tom French |

It's too late to be up writing a sermon.

This is what four days of holidays does to you.

Actually, whenever I write sermons I'm always up this late the night before, so it's nothing to do with holidays. I envy those preachers who write their sermons sitting at polished wooden desks on Wednesday mornings, staring at birds sitting in tress and the Lord's nature frolicking through the green paddocks that are just outside their study windows.

12/15/2006 11:42:00 pm

Returned

Posted by Tom French |

I just returned from Forster where I've been for the past few days since Tuesday, hense no blogging.

I went with some of the Young Adults from church. And I'd give a detailed run down on the events of the week but really there isn't much to say. I didn't make it to the beach once. I spent a lot of time sitting or lying around reading, or talking, or watching DVDs or Cricket. I slept in. And slept on couches. I played Lock On in a park late at night with 15 people. I learnt poker. I drank a lot of beer (by my standards) and ate un-healthy food. The most happiest moment was waking up on the first morning and thinking "I would love fish and chips for breakfast" so off we went and had fish and chips and a buddy for breakfast. Oh yeah.

So I had a good time. The people were all fun. I really enjoyed hanging out. I got to know people better. No stress, felt loved, it was all good. I needed that.

12/11/2006 11:57:00 pm

Dr Pankey and his Merry Dentists

Posted by Tom French |

So I went to the Hygienist today thinking that it was important for the tooth implant. That's what they told me on the phone. The Hygienist has a look and tells me things are looking much better. Probably thanks to my two weeks of flossing and mouth washing back in August.

Then they called my Dentist in. He had a look and was in a rush. But he said "You need to be flossing. And I want you to read a book by Dr Pankey called "The Cross of Life". It will be good to teach it to your young people. I don't have much time but I'll talk to you for a little bit." And I think he's about to talk to me about my teeth. But he stands up in front of me, while I'm still in the chair, tells me to floss than give me a ten minute explanation on why the book, "The Cross of Life" (or is it "A Philosophy of the Practice of Dentistry"), is so important for me and youth ministry ("Because it teaches balance"). Dr Pankey apparently is a Christian. My dentist is Jewish, but he likes Pankey anyway. It was very interesting, though I never expected to get a sermon to an audience of one from my Dentist while sitting in the Hygienist's chair.

Anyway, I went off to pay thinking that I'd be covered by insurance, but it turns out this was just a general hygiene check and x-ray and the like. Nothing to do with the implant. So it cost $340. That hurt. I didn't wake up this morning expecting that expense. This is looking to be a most expensive Christmas.

12/10/2006 11:11:00 pm

Waking

Posted by Tom French |

I woke up with these lyrics in my head:

Yeah, and she's always dressed in white
She moves like an angel
And she burns my eyes


They're Damien Rice lyrics that are wrong. But I woke up with them, so they seemed to have that magical quality of having managed to sneak across the sleep/waking divide. So now I've blogged them.

12/09/2006 09:58:00 pm

Excessive Force

Posted by Tom French |

From SMH:

Ray Castillo, one of the victims of the broken strap issue...admits he was playing with excessive force at the time.

"I would say that I was playing with excessive force when the Wii strap broke," he said.


Insightful reporting.

12/09/2006 12:15:00 am

Gum Bum

Posted by Tom French |

I got rung by the dentist's assistant today to confirm my appointment for Monday. She asked me if I could come an hour earlier because the Dentist had decided he wanted me to see the Hygienist because I'm due to see her again. That was sad. I don't want to see the Hygienist. When they told me to see her again in 6 months back in June I was planning to conveniently forget. But alas, my conscientious Dentist has remembered for me. And now I'm going to get in trouble because the special pack she gave me of things to cause pain to my gum with, quickly disappeared under my bed. So I haven't done any of the things she told me to do.

Anyway, I guess on Monday she'll poke my gums with a big, metal prong, make me bleed and tell me I'm going to die if I don't floss more. I guess I can cope with that.

12/08/2006 09:41:00 am

Gifted

Posted by Tom French |

I think I may have the spiritual gift of buying concert tickets. I'm going to Damien Rice and John Mayer next year.

12/08/2006 01:21:00 am

Bond

Posted by Tom French |

Bond was good.

12/06/2006 10:06:00 pm

Posh

Posted by Tom French |

I'm home from the extravagant get away. It was pretty good. 5-star luxury, bath robes, king sized bed, and a 3 roomed villa all to myself. I felt very blessed. Steve, Stephen and I spent plenty of time talking about the important things for next year and beyond. And we spent plenty of time eating good food and sitting in spas. It was good.

9 is quickly becoming great. I'm going to see Damien in February. Woot!

I was meant to go to a cocktail party tonight, but I bailed because I was running late, I didn't have any clothes to wear and I was scared.

12/05/2006 09:16:00 am

Junket

Posted by Tom French |

Due to a kindly, generous parishioner, I'm off to the Hunter for two days of 5-Star staff meetings here. Never has church business been so posh.

12/04/2006 05:52:00 pm

Rudd

Posted by Tom French |

So now we have Rudd as our Opposition leader. I'm pretty happy about that. Now I'm working at learning about him. In his recent article in The Monthly he wrote concerning the relationship between Christians and the state:

I argue that a core, continuing principle shaping this engagement should be that Christianity...must always take the side of the marginalised, the vulnerable and the oppressed.

and

The function of the church in all these areas of social, economic and security policy is to speak directly to the state: to give power to the powerless, voice to those who have none, and to point to the great silences in our national discourse where otherwise there are no natural advocates.

I'm pretty happy with that. I'm hope he follows through, then he'd be a champ! I may even vote for him.

I must say that I'm pretty sad for Beazley. How terrible to loose your brother on the day you loose your job as leader of the Opposition. Of course loosing your brother would be the hardest part. But it all much suck for him right now.

12/03/2006 11:33:00 pm

Ashes

Posted by Tom French |

I may be paying a little bit of attention to the Ashes.

12/03/2006 11:25:00 pm

Ruddy Complexion

Posted by Tom French |

Tomorrow Rudd and Gillard make their move on the Labor leadership. I do hope they get it. Not that I have much against Kim, but I don't have much for him either. Rudd seems to be friendly on the social justice stuff. And Gillard's a bit a of a champ. And if they can beat the Government, Yeehaa! Though I don't know a huge amount about either of them and I haven't had time to do my reading since the contest came up.

I hope tomorrow makes Australia turn out nicer.

12/02/2006 11:04:00 pm

Jumping

Posted by Tom French |

12 on. 12 off. 12 on. 12 off. 12 on.

As much as I like my job the whole 12 hour day thing, three days in a row isn't looking appealing.

But I did get to jump on a jumping castle at our Kids' Day today, I'll tell ya, that's wicked fun. I want my own one.

It is fun spending a whole day running around with kids. I'm a little sick of people in my youth group having to go to hospitals and medical centres though. I didn't make the trip this time though, being 2IC at Kids' Club meant that I was left cleaning the church. An honour when you're the XO.

12/01/2006 11:35:00 pm

Cha-Chingle Bells

Posted by Tom French |

It's the first day of December and I started doing some Christmas shopping. Don't say that I'm not the man.

Of course I think I bought just as much stuff for myself as I did for other people. Like U2 18 Singles Special Edition with book and DVD. I didn't really want the cd, I have all those songs (except one), I wanted the DVD. It's Live in Milan in a Stadium. It will remind me of Sydney. Although I just watched it, and it doesn't. Everyone looks Italian. But still it's fun.

I also got 9 Damian Rice's new one. I'll tell ya, some lady really screwed him over 'cause he's sounding pretty cut up. It a good cd, I think it's going to be really good, perhaps great. Although I'm looking forward to the day when I break up with someone because I think that's when I will really appreciate the album. All I'll listen to is 9 and Continuum and I'll feel good about feeling so bad.

Woke up and for the first time the animals were gone
It's left this house empty now, not sure if I belong
Yesterday you asked me to write you a pleasant song
I'll do my best now, but you've been gone for so long
- Damien Rice

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