I've always been competitive. Those who know me best might suggest that it is my most defining characteristic (top 5 for sure), though the negative aspects of a competitive spirit have been dramatically lessened in me over the last decade; a number of choice tales refuting this claim may yet exist but I will make it nonetheless.

Those who are hyper-competitive (and their loved ones) will easily acknowledge that losing is perhaps one of the hardest things to accept in life. Card games, sports, mental tests, whatever it might be, losing is always the worst possible outcome...

Before I'd even moved out to Mission years ago, I had heard the stories of another man's competitive streak and laughed at how seriously he would take on anything athletic. These stories received unequivocal confirmation when I saw him lacing up soccer cleats for the mens' 40-yard dash at the church picnic! This man knew how to compete!!

This past calendar year, I've encountered some dramatic changes, one of those being a return to Mission for work. I have been expecting the opportunity to re-ignite some friendships that had been left smoldering while life (and I) moved on, one of those being with the man mentioned above. In a year marked by significant losses (two grandparents and an uncle), one more was added to the record on Tuesday afternoon when Myron Berg perished in a car accident.

I hate to lose. And for reasons I'm finding difficult to pin down, this one hurts more than any of the others from these past months. There have been exceptional wins this season and I'm way above .500, but the losses have been painful and this one has been hard to let go. It's still fresh and the wound is far from closed... I hate to lose.

Nothing can change what has already occurred. It's done and the loss has been permanently etched in the books. The season is almost over, a new one is just around the corner and yet, even a successful season can't remove the taste of ending with such a bitter defeat. It sucks. And I can't really say much more.

R.I.P. Myron and keep those cleats dusted off, cause when I get Home someday, it's on.


See it LIVE

Why do we humans have such short memories when it comes to the positive, enriching moments/experiences and LOOOOOOONG memories when it comes to things that have hurt us or given birth to negativity? We're weird creatures...

I, far too easily, neglect to remember how pure live music is. Participating in a performance as it happens reveals the truth about the artist... flaws, gifts, timing, passions, skill... and lays them bare before the world. Great artists rarely fail to make the experience memorable with honest, natural efforts that seem to stroke fans right where they want it, while poor artists disappoint consistently, exposing weak motivations and dismissive disdain for their followers as long as cash rolls in.

Ahhhh, I'm no qualified critic! I simply want to remember to do more things that I love: time with my wife, visiting friends and family, snow-shoeing in the mountains, playing/watching/listening to live music, games.......sigh...... life.

Thanks Lance et al for a wonderful time last night in Vancity.



Are you a collector? I sure am. I honestly can't think of a time in my life where I haven't been collecting something, even if sporadically... and I am convinced it's all my Grandma Thompson's fault! I don't want that to sound negative, so I'll elaborate:

When my brothers and I were really young, my Grandma started a collection for each of us. Wow, I don't remember what they were though... I know one of my bros was bottle openers and I definitely was the pen guy. Every visit, Christmas, birthday, whatever brought with it a bag of pens, all of them different, almost always different from the ones before (not too many dupes) which meant that she kept track of them at least to some degree. Interesting....

Well, being a boy growing up in the 80s, it meant that I had to play with either Transformers or GI Joe. If you look at my blog, I'll give you a guess as to which one it was!! ;) Thus was born another collection, though admittedly, not so unique from other boys my age. Well, in comes Grandma T again too! Because I liked the toys, she figured I might as well enjoy the comic book also. So she'd buy me an issue here or there, no big deal. Once I got to the 5th grade, I decided I had to have it every month! Luckily, in Thunder Bay there was a comic shop and I visited often enough to buy my little book. Nice.

When we moved to Calgary (grade six), we lived a block or two from a neighbourhood comic shop with video games. I was there something like 5 days a week! Did I mention it was in the same plaza as the Mac's and candy dreams?? Slushies, yeah! And the owner of the shop was my soccer coach!! WOAH! Needless to say, GI Joe alone could not hold all my growing interests... I now needed to read Spiderman, the X-Men and the Hulk... which grew and grew and grew until at the end of the 10th grade, I finally quit.

And started buying basketball and baseball cards!

Then it was CDs.

Then it was DVDs.

After 15 years in remission, back to comic books (sucked in by GI Joe again!! bastards! did you know there's a movie coming out this summer?).

Add in Heroclix.

Still getting CDs and DVDs.

So how do I stop? Do I really want to? Hmmmmmmmmm........


I wonder

who's still out there?

I haven't posted anything for over a year! Maybe time for some introspective meandering... hmmmm.....

Anyone still out there?


How big's your back seat?

No no no no no no no, I am NOT asking about the size of your butt. This is a legitimate question relating to priorities (again). Things that take less priority get "put in the back seat", "on the back burner", "hidden in the back of the closet", etc... though a couple of those phrases could also refer to inappropriate teenage hijinks! Ha.

Anyhow, it seems to me like I'm driving a mini-bus these days (i.e. - lots of back seats) and I just keep chucking everything back there and now there's a pile of stuff all over the seats. Mind you, I've completed some important things and been working steadily....I'm being picky but in a healthy, evaluative way I hope!

One month into 2008 and I'm cleaning out the back seat (which is far too full).

So what about the size of your butt?? ;P


Yeeeee hah, family for the first time!

Well, I am about to meet my wife's sister for the first time. Being a Polander (is that right?), she has never made it across the pond to visit, nor have we made it there. Alex was in Poland the year before we got married, so that's the last time she's even seen her!!

For ten days, we'll be family in our home! AND, to top it all off, because Becca has finally come over to N.America, Alex's mom and other sister will be coming for the weekend too! That makes it Brent (1) and Morataya Delgado girls (4). Ouch :P

It's going to be great to have this group together for the first time EVER!!!


Missing in Action

My wife has left me. She has her reasons...good ones even:

Needs to travel.

Wants to help others.

I didn't clean the toilet in time (no, I still haven't cleaned it thanks).

Ok, so she didn't leave because of the dirty toilet, nor any other negative reason; she is away on a missions trip to the Philippines! She left on Sunday night (Monday morning) at 2am and I haven't seen her face since 1:15am. That's just over 40 hours. Not so long, and not our longest time apart, but the kicker is that there are 264+ more hours to come on top of that! I miss her terribly and hate being without her.

The thing I realized last night is that everything really does change when you get married. I was 30 on the day of my wedding and had experienced a whole bunch of singleness in the years prior to that blessed day. But in all my days of being single, while I may have had lonely moments, nothing matches the loneliness I felt last night. It is the proven reality that you can only really miss something when it's gone (i.e.- you had it before and now you don't)...

When I was lonely as a single person, it hurt. It was sad. It was depressing. But I didn't know what I was missing. I was never really aware of any void.

Now, there is a VOID. It's big, it's bad, it's ugly. Something dramatic and significant (all-encompassing) has gone missing and left a hole where it once sat. Crazy kind of lonely.

I don't bring this up to drum up sympathy or tell a sad tale. I bring this up because today, for the first time in my 32 years of life, I can at least begin to understand what it might be like to lose someone. I will see Alex in 264+ hours (God willing) and the void will go away for me. But there are many without that great fortune. So today, think about someone in your life who may be staring at that void and pray for God to love them like He's loved no other, that they may be touched by the richness of HIS mercy and the comfort of His peace.

"Blessed are those who mourn, for they will be comforted."


What did I miss?

November 17th.

Becoming less of a last-minute guy has real consequences. There was a time in my life when I could do anything anytime...a real free spirit! Not only that, but I could improvise at the drop of a hat. Last-minute, no problem!

The first problems with 'last-minuteness' came up within personality conflicts with people at work. "What?!? You want me to plan HOW far ahead? You're insane! Why would you do such a thing?" Well, needless to say, some give and take resulted from these mature conversations and I learned to plan further ahead while others learned to 'go with it' a little more... ahhh the beauty of balance.

Now, it makes sense to me to plan some things months in advance. Set dates, do legwork, prepare for changes, etc. It works. This past Saturday, however, I paid the price...

Lance in concert at House of James. Out.
Pre-release Mutations and Monsters Heroclix Tournament in Richmond (exclusive to only 30 people...I was signed up 3rd and had to cancel once I realized the date!!). Out.
UFC 78: Bisping vs. Evans. Out.

All because at a youth pastors' lunch in Cloverdale in September, we decided to plan a suburb-city event for our youth. Cloverdale Younite. We set a relatively random date of Saturday, November 17th and rolled out of the meeting. Sounded great at the time.

In fact, it wasn't until Sunday evening, November 11, that I realized all of these events were converging upon each other....a huge mess of social impossibility. And all because of a random date set months before at a lunch. Oh, to have Last-Minute Man back again... sigh.

Of course, that would've put me into awkward territory, having to decide between Lance and Heroclix (remember, my first ever exclusive pre-release). Glad I didn't have to choose :)
The Younite went well also, so I'd say it was a win all around. Though Last-Minute Man would've had some greater flexibility, PLAN-IT-AHEADER (a lame super hero name to be sure) made some early choices that saved later turmoil (having to choose between Lance and HC). Go dude!

In other news, my LT Panthers were knocked out of the playoffs last Thursday, getting thoroughly beaten by the unbeaten John Barsby Jr. Dawgs (from Nanaimo). Quarter-finals of the provincials. Not bad, but this team could have done more had they worked together better. Always next year ;)



Day 2 of the Basketball Renewal Sessions begins in less than an hour. Awesome.

Football playoffs begin for my team tomorrow as we travel 3 hours to face our #2 seeded opponent. Should be fun. Nothing quite like a bus trip with a bunch of stinky 14/15 year olds ;P

I almost purchased Settlers of Catan (plus Seafarers and Cities & Knights) yesterday but I didn't pull the trigger. I love that game and my wife and I are hosting games with a friendly couple on Sunday (haven't seen them for awhile) so it made sense to play that then. But I didn't get it. I still think I'm saving up for the next Heroclix set instead...we'll see.

Games are very enjoyable for me. I am competitive like crazy, so sports are good, board games are good, group games are good, pretty much anything. Sudoku and Solitaire are even fun for me! The only games I don't like are emotional games, like between people who are deceiving each other. Those games suck. Yup.

That is a weird note to end on, but there it is. Game-playing: good all the time unless you're hurting someone! HAHAHAHAHA!


O how I missed thee

Sweet sport. I've been playing floor hockey for near two years now. I'm not a lifelong ballhockeyer... I grew up on other sports like soccer and football, and later, basketball. These were my staples and I threw in some volleyball and wrestling. No hockey of any kind. Weird for a Canadian, prairie-raised, outdoor rink having boy. But true.

When Zion's Mens' Ministry decided to start a "Mens' Night" floor hockey became the game. It started out with a mixture: volleyball, followed by floor hockey, with table games and xbox outside the gym for those not playing sports. It was a nice enough mix. But hockey began to dominate as others dropped out... leaving only hockey players. So mens' night was now floor hockey night. It's been that way for close to two years now...

As mentioned above, I was a floor hockey novice. I had much to learn and I worked hard to do so! I did learn the game and I'm at least average now I'd say. Yeah, average. And that's not so bad. Lately though, I've been having lower back trouble and floor hockey is a tough game with a bad back or so I've found. I've thus been sidelined and even when able to play, had some other commitments these last weeks. Obviously, ball hockey has been on the back burner.

Well, some chiropractic and massage therapy have helped out my back, but I figured out that what would really help as well would be stretching combined with good activity. Basketball. Ever since I began working at Zion, I've wanted a bball night. I've played on the church softball team, been a regular at floor hockey, coach football every fall and spring, but I've been missing bball. My true love. It can't be beat as a playing sport for me. Don't get me wrong, I'm competitive enough that I enjoy any sport, hence two years hacking away at floor hockey, becoming average. But I'm actually good at football and basketball, and we all know what playing football does to guys as they get older (can we say unrecuperatable injury folks?)... so bball has been my thing.

I haven't played a solid game of adult ball for years. I used to play twice a week until both places got shut down cause the leaders with keys couldn't make it anymore. That happens. So I've been missing out. I tried community centres (in Vancouver, it's called small ball-so many asian people and I'm too big and tall - it's really not that fun). I tried outdoor courts (dirty ball, dirty shoes, dirty players). I looked into mens' league (not many out there really, but I have too many evening commitments to make that fly). Every once and awhile, I'd remember that I work at a church with a great gym and I should start my own night each week. Why has it taken so long?

Tonight we played for the first time. Ten guys (with more to come next week), full court, competitive basketball. Heaven in my backyard. I'm happy about having my game back :)