During last Sunday's televised mass, Bishop Edward Burns of the Catholic Diocese of Dallas, gave a very interesting homily. Instead of talking about the gospel reading, he instead gave a lecture on the different parts or rites of the Mass.
To give some examples, he explains why the priest or bishop say what they say. And why the clergy responds the way they do. Most of it is based on the Bible of course, and he cites specific passages as it relates to them.
He explains the offertory and what is really being offered during that time — spoiler, we are offering ourselves.
It is Jesus in fact that you seek when you dream of happiness; he is waiting for you when nothing else you find satisfies you; he is the beauty to which you are so attracted; it is he who provokes you with that thirst for fullness that will not let you settle for compromise; it is he who urges you to shed the masks of a false life; it is he who reads in your hearts your most genuine choices, the choices that others try to stifle. It is Jesus who stirs in you the desire to do something great with your lives, the will to follow an ideal, the refusal to allow yourselves to be grounded down by mediocrity, the courage to commit yourselves humbly and patiently to improving yourselves and society, making the world more human and more fraternal.
It's been over a month since my last music log. What with the digital declutter and all. Anyway, it's time for another one. I've got two hard hitting head-bang inducing rock songs in this music log. Both tracks deliver great messages to their listeners. Let's get started.
First up is the song “Justified” by one of my favorite bands, A Day To Remember. This song is a great reminder for all of us to stop being judgemental of other people. Especially those with a different set of beliefs than ours. If your set of beliefs or religion has you looking down at other people who believe differently, then there's something wrong there.
Just as an example, Jesus said, “Love your neighbors as yourself.” Note that He didn't say to love them only if they believe what you believe. He said to love them as you love yourself.
Anyway, I don't want to sound like I'm preaching in this music log. Here are some of the song's lyrics. This is a great rock song from start to finish.
Burn me alive
If you feel that's justified
I need more than faith
To see you on the other side, the other side
Can you hear me?
The lowly one
Do ya fear me?
You righteous ones
During my second digital declutter, I found that I had a lot more time to tinker with my websites. And so I did. Here are some of the updates I've made to this site during that time.
Blazor WASM Search App
I've got a new Search app for this journal. It is a Blazor Web Assembly app. So, basically a .NET app written in C# that runs as a client-side web application. And it loads much faster than my previous Search app hosted on Glitch. That's because it is a static site hosted on Netlify. Which means it's always up and running. There is an initial load where your browser downloads the .NET DLLs. But after that, it should load pretty quickly next time you use it.
I took away the link to get a Random post from this journal. I did so because it had a slot machine feel to it. Watching The Social Dilemma reminded me of the slot machine nature of it. But my main reason for removing it, was because it took so long to load at times. This stood in stark contrast to how fast this Write.as powered site loads. I can redo it as a Blazor Web Assembly app, but that's not a priority right now. Maybe something to tinker with in the future.
This post first appeared on my dev blog at dinobansigan.com. It was published back in 01/28/2019. I've updated the post and moved it here as it was not really a software development or tech related post.
A few days ago I heard an ad on TV that said something like, “people say less is more, but more is REALLY MORE!” Obviously, the intent of that ad is to get you to spend more money. We live in a world where people are judged by their material possessions. The narrative being, if you have more, then you are living a better life compared to everyone else around you. That is ridiculous.
My second digital declutter officially ends tomorrow. There's a lot to unpack from this latest declutter, but that will come in time. This post is to address some changes I'm making going forward.
First — I'm tentatively setting this journal back to Public. This means my posts will once again show up on the read.write.as feed. But...
Second — I'm no longer going to check the read.write.as feed. So, if you respond to a post of mine with a post that shows up on the feed, I have no way of knowing about it. For any questions, comments or concerns, I highly suggest leaving me a message or sending me an email. There's also some more ways of reaching me listed in my Contact page.
It is unfortunate, since I was one of those who happily participated in conversations over the read.write.as feed. But for now, I'm choosing to prioritize my mental health over it. I'm doing this for my own sanity.
Found myself playing XCOM 2 and ended up frustrated once again. I very nearly got my whole squad wiped out in a “Retaliation” mission. The Muton enemy was so strong. It was able to consistently hit my soldiers who were in good cover and those who were on the rooftops with regular cover. Initially, I had it disoriented, which made it ineffective in combat. But I didn't have enough Flash-bang grenades to keep it disoriented until I could take it out.
I tried a new tactic of falling back into an overwatch position during firefights. The intent here was to avoid getting shot, while at the same time, giving my soldiers a free shot at approaching enemies. It works well against regular enemies. But it didn't work at all against the Muton.
I did learn one good tactic for a “Retaliation” mission that involves saving civilians. That is to make sure that the soldier approaching the civilians has a shotgun or a sword. And that the squad's sniper, has good line of sight to the civilian being approached. This is so that in the event that the civilian turns out to be a Faceless enemy, the sniper can shoot it, taking a good chunk of hp in the process. While the soldier who approached it, can finish it off with a shotgun or sword.
This is what my typical lineup looked like, during a game in the 2022-2023 Master League season.
Had an amazing game against FC Barcelona.
Due to the way they were defending, I couldn't keep the ball in the center of the field. Once I pass the ball to my AMF, he would have just a few seconds before he is dispossessed. It's just not enough time to build up an attack. So, I tried a different way of attacking. I went from sending short passes into the center of the field, to lobbing through balls over their defenders.
I noticed that Goios times his runs perfectly. But even after a perfectly timed pass, Goios is just not fast enough to get to the ball before the defender clears it away. This happened 2-3 times before I realized, it is not going to work with Goios. That's because Goios only has a Speed rating of 70.
So, at the 55 minute mark, I decided to take Goios out and brought in K. Gameiro — one of my more promising strikers. The important thing to note here is that Gameiro has a Speed rating of 90. That makes him the fastest player on my team.
Meanwhile, my email inboxes have been getting unwieldy. The number of unread posts on my Feedly account keeps on growing. I have not been reading books as much as I used to. I have not been learning new skills. I'm starting to get exhausted because I feel like I'm in a race to do lots of stuff, even if nobody is asking me to do them.
Recent posts I've read have made me question whether this is the best use of my time and my reader's time. I've started to wonder whether I've been producing something of value for myself and my readers. I wonder if maybe I'm just going through the motions. Like trying to look productive, even though I'm not. If that's the case, then I'm just wasting everyone's time, mine included.
I know I just recently wrote a music log post. And I don't usually do them in quick succession. Not to mention, I don't usually write posts on Sundays. But ever since I heard a wonderful rendition of Dan Schutte's “You Are Near” in the televised Mass I was watching, I have been wanting to do a Sunday Music Log post. What was holding me back, was finding a similar rendition of the song that I could share online. I couldn't find one, so I sort of gave up on the idea.
Then in today's Mass, Dave and Lauren Moore, the couple who sings in the televised Sunday Masses that I watch, sang a beautiful rendition of “I Am The Bread Of Life”. Once again I was filled with this urge to write a Sunday Music Log post. I went on to the Catholic Diocese of Dallas website to find a way to contact the diocese. I wanted to ask them if they have recorded videos of the songs that Dave and Lauren Moore sang in Mass. It turns out, the diocese has a YouTube channel where they uploaded recordings of the televised Masses I've been watching. Within those videos are the exact rendition of the songs that I watched, and now want to share.
So, first up is this beautiful rendition of Dan Schutte's “You Are Near”. The song starts at around the 48:22 mark.
This song brings back good memories. Memories of me as a kid singing it in Mass at school. Memories of me playing the guitar, while our group of altar servers sang this song in Mass. It's such a beautiful song with beautiful lyrics, I hope you enjoy it as much as I do.
Where can I run from your love?
If I climb to the heavens you are there
If I fly to the sunrise
Or sail beyond the sea
Still I’d find you there
O Lord, I know you are near
Standing always at my side
You guard me from the foe
And you lead me in ways everlasting