We had a good time Friday at night at Jenn's karaoke party. There's nothing quite like watching somebody get caught off guard by the start of Happy Birthday on the karaoke screen and then trying to catch up. Dave wanted to sing it to her as the cake came out. Of course we all helped him get back on track, but it was a funny moment. I took another stab at Johnny Cash and sang Ring of Fire as Dave had promised everyone in the invitation. I met my obligation but John totally ducked his on Sweet Caroline. I like Johnny Cash a lot and it's fun to sing along in the car but after this experience and my previous attempt at Riders in the Sky I may have to give up. I can't really sing low enough and compounded that by holding the mike too far from my face so my friends couldn't hardly hear me. I did try Boy Named Sue once but the speak-singing makes that tricky. Oh well. Later in the evening I felt pretty good about Man of Constant Sorrow. The range is right, I know and love it, and I've even "bid farewell to old Kentucky, the place where I was born and raised." I tried to get Steve to it but eventually had to admit defeat and sing it myself. Man of Constant Sorrow goes along with Birdhouse in Your Soul and Copperhead Road as my karaoke successes. CR gets low in a couple of places but I can cover those with enthusiasm. As long as I'm on the subject the other two songs I've tried have length problems. Simon and Garfunkel's The Rat is too short. Dire Straits' Money for Nothing is just right if you only focus on the part you sing along with in the car but you've got a minute of "I want my MTV" at the beginning and about two minutes of "Money for nothing, chicks for free" at the end. It's a fun two minute song sandwiched between three minutes of standing there feeling stupid. I think for the next time I go I want to try the traditional Irish song Finnegan's Wake, about a dead Irishman who's revived when whiskey's spilled on him during a brawl at his wake, and I Just Stopped in to See What Condition My Condition Was In by Kenny Rogers from the Gutterballin' sequence in The Big Lebowski soundtrack. "Phone's ringin', Dude."
On Saturday Steve and I went to the Bristol Renaissance Faire in Bristol, Wis. Steve got to dress up a little and wear a pirate shirt and his sword. I don't have any costume gear so I dressed as myself. We looked into buying me a battle axe but couldn't find anything in my price range. I enjoy the ren faire but I just can't bring myself to spend the money on costuming. We saw some funny jugglers and magicians and a pretty cool display of 16th century surgical methods. We also got some good food and I took care of my annual mead fix, so honoring my Renaissance Meador ancestors. I was talking a week ago with a friend at church who had been to the faire. We noted the incongruity of an event claiming to be set in the Renaissance with no tinge of Christianity. D. joked that they could at least burn a heretic. I kind of think that if I ever do go in costume it'd be fun to go as a friar, or maybe given the 1589 English setting, as a Puritan.
After the faire we went down to Trinity for the new student orientation church fair (I guess Saturday was a "fair day" despite the rainy weather). We got to talk about our church to a number of new seminary and college students and with a few of the other church reps. that were there. It was a fun time. We had a lot more seminary than college contacts but it still felt like a worthwhile time to me. Later last night we went over to some friends' new apartment. They've got a really nice place and they've decorated it well. We played games, including losing and winning games of Settlers, and hung out.
On Sunday we got hear a very encouraging sermon on baptism followed by a good time of communion and singing. We closed the service with I'll Fly Away. As a congregation we can't clap to that with any coherence but it was still a sweet time of affirmation of our hope in Christ. Our church men's ministry sponsored a day of service where men with various skills would go the homes of single women and moms who requested it and do various odd jobs and repairs. After the service I teamed up with a group of men and we went to a lady's house and installed a phone jack, repaired her screen door, hung some pictures, fixed a toilet, and reset a sliding door. The rain prevented some jobs like cutting down a tree and some car repairs, but we got to help out some of the women in the church and work together with some new guys so it was a good time. Unfortunately the same rain that shut out some of the service projects also rained the first softball game of the fall season. Apparently the caretakers of the Libertyville Sports Complex softball pond didn't think we could swim well enough to pull off a game. That was just as well as it gave me and Steve time to catch up on our Battlestar Galactica watching, reading, and laundry.
Verse of the day:
"Or don't you know that all of us who were baptized into Christ Jesus were baptized into his death? We were therefore buried with him through baptism into death in order that, just as Christ was raised from the dead through the glory of the Father, we too may live a new life." Rom. 6:3-4 (NIV)