Thursday, December 30, 2010

Where did those muscles come from?

On Tuesday night I got my first chance to go cross country skiing. That's right, I went at night for my first time, and for some reason I didn't even think twice about it. After all I had a head lamp!

Anywho, Ronsta was kind enough to teach my some skills as I floundered around Minooka. I've never done any kind of snow sport, unless you count sledding. I noticed I was getting quite a different workout then he was, it was like trying to swim laps with someone when they can breath stroke and you can barely doggie paddle.

I crashed a few times, nothing horrific. However, I did manage to bend a pole crashing at slow speeds on a flat, and bust a ski going even slower on a flat. That was just weird. I didn't bust any of me though and I had a great time! I am sore in muscles that I apparently never use. I look forward to the snow coming back after this rain and warm weather so I can get out there again!

Saturday, December 18, 2010

Snow/Ice Ride

Tosa Trails 12.18
Photo courtesy of Ronsta
Great icy snow ride with some good guys for a couple of hours in the cool temps.

Wednesday, December 15, 2010

Do we have the consumption?

I have recently heard from numerous people from both political sides and all kinds of beliefs that "they" want us to spend more to save the economy.

"They" in this instance are the government officials. What I find interesting is that in general these people tend to agree that spending, or rather consuming is not the answer. The only premise I can gather is that the practice of consuming is bad. The idea that consuming is bad I can go along with in most cases, but I am not sure I can write off the practice of consuming goods as evil in general.

One thing we need to remember is that we live in a capitalist society. Oooo, I said capitalism, we all know that is inherently evil! Or is it? Sure, it can be a breeding ground for greed, but that doesn't necessarily make the economic structure greedy in itself, it means the people using it can use it for purposes for which it was not intended. In a capitalist society buying and selling are needed to keep the structure going. Buying is consuming.

Where I think we often get caught up though is that we equate buying/consuming with greed. Surely it is when we buy things only for ourselves, for our own use, and especially when we do not have the money to do so. Such consuming is greed. Let me flip that now. How different is that from storing up our goods or money so that only we have access to it and no one else, especially when we have plenty for ourselves in the foreseeable near future, and calling it savings? To me it's two sides of the same coin. Both are greed and have numerous theological implications, perhaps I'll get into that later.

Consuming goods doesn't have to mean we have to use or keep goods for ourselves. What it can mean is that we use the resources we have been blessed with to help and bless others so that the society we have been blessed to be born into can continue, if that is what you want.

Every time we buy a meal for ourselves (or somebody else) and tip we are paying wages for numerous people. Just something to think about.

Thoughts? Comments?

Friday, December 10, 2010

WI Cheese, Sausage, and Beer

Don't forget the big fat soft Miller's Pretzels. No, I'm not talking about every family get together or work holiday party in WI. I'm talking about Saturday, January 15th at the Cheese Bar! 7pm-11pm on Old World 3rd in Downtown Milwaukee. Mark it down. Bring your friends!

More details to come, like some tasty things that you won't have to pay for and some other things on which you just might want to drop a dime.

P.S. the Tosa Trails were in great shape this week. Even if it rains on Saturday and they ice up good by Sunday, studded tires will have you leaning on corners on Monday.

Tuesday, December 7, 2010

Uh, I think it is safe to say winter is here

The Cook-off was a blast, if you missed it, you need to make the next one. Along those lines, I should be finalizing the details with the Cheese Bar on Thursday for an event. At the Cheese Bar you can get various flights of Wisconsin cheese (my favorite thus far is a 12 year old cheddar) and they'll give you tips on which beer or wine to pair up with the flight. They also have the most extensive selection of Wisconsin beers available in one place that I have ever seen. Mark it down, Saturday, January 15th. For those so inclined, perhaps we could mix in a ride around the city after? More details to follow soon!

Training is back in full swing, well as much as it can be without spending much time on the bike. I'm in the gym 3 times a week and on the trainer once a week. I'm told in a few weeks there will be enough artificial snow to start cross country skiing if we don't get the natural type. I'm really looking forward to learning how to ski, and for some reason, falling down a lot. Is that second part weird?

Also, Reconcile just launched a micro-site called It is not the church website, but it does have a link to the church website. The point of the micro-site is to try and understand people better, from all walks of life, so that conversations can begin or be furthered. So if you would, take the time to check the site out and post something. It is completely anonymous. Just the few that are up already give an interesting look below the surface. It would be so cool to get people with all types of beliefs and backgrounds posting things! Also, go back after you have visited and posted once because A: you can post again; B: you can read all the new posts since last time you were there. There is a link at the bottom of my links to the right

Thursday, December 2, 2010


Here are the details: The Cook-off will take place on Saturday Dec 4th. People should arrive around 6:30pm and plan on eating about 7pm.

Here is how it works: We pick a theme dish, style,or ingredients and everyone brings their version to share. We call it a Cook-off but it isn't really a contest. You do not need to bring food, but it is more fun when more people do. The theme this time is....MAC N CHEESE!!!! Be creative. Let's get carbtastic!

If you are in the Milwaukee area and you want to come, shoot me an email for directions. marc.engelhardt at gmaildotcom