If there were a soundtrack for my childhood, it would feature verse after verse…after plaintive, supplicating verse of "Just As I Am." The 19th-century hymn by Charlotte Elliott – not to be confused with the mawkish ‘80s soft rock hit by pop phenom, Air Supply – was the signature altar call in Billy Graham’s evangelistic … Continue reading JUST AS I WAS: BILLY GRAHAM AND LOSING MY RELIGION
"Come to the wet, swampy land of North Florida," they said. "It's a great place for a young mosquito just starting out," they said. "You'll be drunk every night on the blood of sweaty white meat, so numbed by Budweiser, box wine, and Airstream pride, they'll forget to keep up their defenses." So I arrive … Continue reading GOING (WEST NILE) VIRAL
We ended up in the middle of the Olustee Battle Festival in Lake City, Florida, quite by accident. It's hard to find a campground on the weekend without a reservation, so we sometimes stealth camp in places like Planet Fitness or Walmart parking lots, or on the street. We ended up downtown amongst the vendors … Continue reading GRAY AREAS
I have this report from nine months on the road across America: There are deranged shooters, bought-and-paid-for politicians, and belligerent internet trolls. There are judgmental, self-righteous, and hateful people out there. But there are more of us than there are of them. More students who are making friends, working hard to get good grades, and … Continue reading #MoreOfUs
A couple of weeks ago, we left Springfield and did a little Western swing to meet three former governors (who've also been ambassadors, congresspeople, Cabinet secretaries, etc.): Dick Celeste in Colorado Springs (former Ohio governor), Bill Richardson in Santa Fe (former New Mexico governor), and Kathleen Sebelius in Lawrence (former Kansas governor). The meetings were … Continue reading TOUR de GOVERNORS
Here's another original song video from the road. I wrote and recorded this while we were back home in Springfield for the holidays. I hope you enjoy it.
If you missed Biz417's "Think Summit" at the Springfield Art Museum in January, you can watch it here.
We've been "home" in Springfield, Missouri for several weeks, living in borrowed spaces and absorbing the garland and goodwill of friends and family who define what home is for us. Now we're gearing up to hit the road again. We're finished with our planned route, but we'll still be traveling. From here on, we're meeting … Continue reading GET YOUR MOTOR RUNNIN’
Number of months on the road: 6 Total miles traveled: 18,750 States covered: 43 (and the District of Columbia) Total number of people we’ve met: 611 Average miles per gallon: 16 Number of times we used ridesharing (Lyft or Uber) in a city after we parked and didn’t want to get the van back out … Continue reading GIGANTIC INDEX – DAY 192
According to Public Religion Research Institute (PRRI), only 30% of American evangelicals in 2011 thought a person guilty of serious moral failures was fit for significant leadership roles. In 2016, that number rose to 72%...suggesting there is now something other than religious values driving their decision-making. Or, at least their religious values function quite differently … Continue reading TRUE RELIGION