I've been working somewhat around the clock lately, so I have had to resort to finding fun photos that cross my path instead of hunting for them. That's okay, because this one was actually a request of sorts.
I've had a couple of posts of statues in the past and have had email requests for other ones around Bismarck. Okay, here you go. Guess where this statue is located? Obviously it's indoors, but it's in an area where a person is likely to have passed it at one time or another.
If you're really good, you'll know the name of the artist and the title of the statue. You'll actually be better than me because I think I forgot them. Maybe it'll come back to me, but it doesn't matter - it's your job to guess.
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The reason I haven't been posting a lot of photos lately is simple: I'm too busy working to get out and take any! Nearly every waking moment has been spent editing or animating something, either at work or at home. I see a light at the end of the tunnel simply because the due dates on these projects are looming.
During a taco run for dinner I was able to snap this photo before returning to the office. It's the bridge used by the trolley to Fort Lincoln. While I'm sure it still sees use by the trolley, I have yet to actually witness this. It's one of the things my wife and I always say we're going to do, but never quite get around to it. Hopefully it'll be running in the spring, because we'd love to take a ride. At that time we'll need a babysitter!
Hopefully I'll get to run around with the camera like usual sometime soon.
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By the same token, what is a fundamentalist Muslim? He reads the Koran and Hadith, believes that they are the inerrant word of their god, written in heaven. They try to read it daily, believe what it says, and strive to live their lives accordingly. They don't get to pick and choose which parts they think are authentic and which parts are not. That includes the parts that give instruction to "strike off their heads, strike off the very tips of their fingers."
For some reason, nobody seems to want to even address the fact that what these hateful, sick people are doing in the guise of a religion comes from the fundamentals of their beliefs. The muslims believe that the Koran was written by their god in their version of heaven...why would they presume to weed out the parts of it that are not politically correct? If it's in there, they believe it. Period. And if that's how their god instructs them, those are the instructions they're obligated to carry out. Yet nobody wants to acknowledge this! These fundamentalists are the TRUE muslims, the ones who take the words of the Koran at face value. Yet it seems more convenient for the deceived westerners to simply label them as "extremists" and be done with them.
It's jaw-dropping to see how the wool is being pulled over Western eyes when it comes to Islam. Even a lot of Christians are deceived about it (For there shall arise false Christs, and false prophets, and shall shew great signs and wonders; insomuch that, if it were possible, they shall deceive the very elect. --Matthew 24:24) and you have to dig for yourself to find any real information on the so-called Religion of Peace. Go to the solarium at St. Alexius Medical Center and you'll find a Koran in a glass case, turned to a page talking about how Allah is scolding Israel for being disobedient. This is symptomatic of the entire Western world right now. It's not just that people are too distracted by American Idol to care, it's a nearly willful disregard of what the muslim world is doing and plans to do.
Even our own President, who professes to be a born-again Christian believer, refers to Islam as the "Religion of Peace." It seems like the whole world seems to be grabbing its collective ankles to accomodate Islam, while at the same time trying to rid itself of Christianity. If religion itself is the problem, as liberals claim, then why cozy up to muslims while trying to force Christians out of public society? For some reason Islam is the giant elephant in the room that nobody acknowledges, and it defies all logic or reasoning.
After the September 11th, 2001 attacks, already groups were lining up to make a memorial there that explains why the poor persecuted muslims were forced to do it. The Crusades, which were the Christians' way of stopping a muslim onslaught into Europe, have been re-branded as a Christian imperialism into the pristine holy lands of Islam. You don't dare take a Bible or appear to pray in public school, but some of those same schools are requiring classes on Islam. Does any of this make any sense?
Imagine how many European panties would become irreparably twisted into an angst-ridden bunch if President George W. Bush, a born-again Christian, were to preface an address to the United Nations with the following:
"Lord God, I thank you in the name of your son, my Savior, the Lord Jesus Christ, for this opportunity to address this Assembly on behalf of the great nation of the United States of America. I also praise you, Father, for gathering this body of people together, that we may bring our expression of views and aspirations for the world which you've created. We seek you, Lord, humanity craves your Truth, your Justice, and your teaching to love others as we love ourselves. I praise you, Lord, for this blessing, and ask your guidance...in Jesus' name, Amen."
Democrats would immediately draw up impeachment paperwork, liberal blogs would seethe till the very Internet melted, and the whole world would be raving with fear about the "Crusader" George Bush. He's been called that already, and never had to utter a public prayer to do so! Yet, here's how the President of Iran prefaced his address to the UN General Assembly in September:
"I praise the Merciful, All-Knowing and Almighty God for blessing me with another opportunity to address this Assembly on behalf of the great nation of Iran and to bring a number of issues to the attention of the international community.
I also praise the Almighty for the increasing vigilance of peoples across the globe, their courageous presence in different international settings, and the brave expression of their views and aspirations regarding global issues.
Today, humanity passionately craves commitment to the Truth, devotion to God, quest for Justice and respect for the dignity of human beings. Rejection of domination and aggression, defense of the oppressed, and longing for peace constitute the legitimate demand of the peoples of the world, particularly the new generations and the spirited youth, who aspire a world free from decadence, aggression and injustice, and replete with love and compassion. The youth have a right to seek justice and the Truth; and they have a right to build their own future on the foundations of love, compassion and tranquility. And, I praise the Almighty for this immense blessing."
He really did say this to the United Nations, and claimed on videotape "I felt the atmosphere suddenly change. And for those 27 or 28 minutes, the leaders of the world did not blink. . . . It seemed as if a hand was holding them there, and it opened their eyes to receive the message from the Islamic Republic." Granted, he's praying to a god that doesn't exist, but still...isn't it amazing how he was praised by the press, accepted in as a great dignitary, and generally fawned over? Had a Christian of any stature tried something like this, they'd have been the subject of an immediate discreditation campaign and run out on a rail. Had the President of the United States prayed before the UN General Assembly, the repercussions would be felt for months.
Before I get into the eschatological part of this, let me just say this for any atheists or non-Christians who might be reading. I had 11,171 hits on Wednesday alone; I have to assume there are some of you among my readers. Even if you don't believe in Christianity or Islam or any religion whatsoever, they do. Look at what these people are saying! They're broadcasting it, webcasting it, teaching it in their schools, and indoctrinating their children with it. Heck, it's been going on for a long time...wouldn't it make sense even to the greatest of skeptics that sooner or later, this stuff is going to get some traction?
Now for the religious "end times" stuff. We Christians believe that in the end times, there will be tremendous violence and chaos, at which time a great peacemaker will appear. The born-again Christian believers will then be taken up to be with Jesus in what is referred to as the Rapture. Back on earth, however, this peacemaker is an Antichrist and a deceiver who will bring about seven years of tribulation. He will form a one-world religion, and any who reject it will be beheaded. Those who accept it will get a mark on their head or in their hand. Ahmadinejad is praying for his god to send the Mahdi, a so-called perfect human being, to come and bring peace to the world. Sound familiar? The deception's running rampant and the pieces are in place.
And who's doing the beheading these days? Muslims. From the Indonesian muslims that stalked and beheaded a group of Christian schoolgirls last month for a Ramadan trophy to the cowards over in Iraq who can post their beheadings on the Internet but don't have the sack to do it without a mask on, the beheading club in this big ol' world of ours exclusively practices Islam. And guess who's out there claiming that Iran will put a mark on the forehead of its enemies? Good old president Ahmadinejad. I watched Iranian video of him saying it tonight. He believes it's his duty to bring about the return of their chosen one, which can only be done by chaos and violence. He's publicly calling for the annihilation of Israel, yet over here the lefties claim George Bush is a terrorist. It's downright spooky.
While Islam gets a major re-branding and image makover here in the West, it's amazing how they're training their kids to be martyrs, even in their cartoons. They're plotting the bloody conflict with the West, while we sit back and wonder if Britney Spears will get custody of her kids in her divorce from K-Fed and send our kids to "Understanding Islam" classes. It's just plain sick.
This week on CNN Headline News, Glenn Beck hosted a special where they show cartoons, TV shows, and what the Islamic leaders are saying over in their home territory. It is downright chilling. They come here with warm smiles and talk of peace and get treated like celebrities. They then return home and incite crowds numbering in the hundreds of thousands into martyrdom and hatred of the Western world. There's also a movie called "Obsession" which describes what muslims are saying back in their world, as opposed to what their CAIR mouthpieces are spouting here in the United States and other western nations. Both of these deserve your attention. While CNN Headline News is replaying the Glenn Beck special tonight, the movie is still awaiting theatrical release.
You can view the Glenn Beck special here as long as the link is valid: YouTube
You can find out more about the Obsession movie here on its official site: Obsession: the Movie
Want even more information about what these people are really saying and planning about us? memritv.com
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One of the best views of Bismarck is from atop the hills on the northeast side of town. There's Hillside Park, which is quite popular, and then there's the steep streets of Laforest and Northview. Northview is also known for the neighborhood which decorates all the trees in unison during Christmas, and becomes a busy street during the season. Laforest is one block over and faces more westward, providing the view you see above.
With potentially slippery conditions in the winter, the hill has always been marked by the prominent HILL sign you see above. For the past twenty years or so it has also been marked by something else: the letters L, E, and A. They were apparently painted on somehow and removed, leaving a lasting impression on the sign. They're pretty well invisible by day, but stand out quite obviously when the sign is in your headlights (or flash).
So what's the deal with those three letters? What do they stand for, and how'd they get there? As luck would have it, I know the answer to that story. A friend of mine used to live in that neighborhood when she was younger, and told me the story when we first started spending time together. In fact, she's quite directly involved.
As the story goes, another kid in the neighborhood a long time ago wanted to get my friend in trouble. Apparently the only way they thought worthwhile at the time was to try to vandalize this sign. They got some paint and put her name, Lea, prominently above the HILL on the sign. Naturally the neighbors all spotted it right away. Lea maintained her innocence until the truth came out.
I suppose the sign was never replaced because during the day it's nearly impossible to see anything unusual about it. But I'm sure dozens of people who come up Northview each Christmas to see the lights, taking a right at the top of the hill to come back down by Laforest, see the letters L E A in their headlights as they pass this sign. Now you know why they're there..
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It's been a while since I used a music reference in a post's title, so I thought I'd throw that in there for old time's sake. Walking out to the truck last night, I was surprised to see that it had rained, and another wave of light rain was clearly on its way.
As I began my trek home, I noticed a rainbow that became more and more vivid as the sun crept lower in the sky. At one point it even had a faint twin, as shown in this picture. It was one of those where both ends of the rainbow are visible, but I don't have a wide enough lens to capture that. Darn.
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