Welcome to Kidologist.com (formerly PastorKarl.com), where Karl Bastian, nicknamed the "Kidologist" by his family for being a 'big kid' and founder of Kidology.org, posts his thoughts and adventures. GET POSTS BY E-MAIL: Subscribe To Kidologist.com

Tuesday, June 28, 2005

My First Music Video!

This Sunday at my church we are starting a two month Family Sunday School class, and it will be my first Sunday using a new curriculum called 252 Basics, based on Luke 2:52 (Jesus grew in wisdom and stature and favor with God and man). Anyway, I won't get into that here, but to say that it is a 'virtue based' curriculum and each month will focus on a new "virtue" with July being "HUMILITY." The curriculum provides some very modern and up to date music as well, and a theme song for each month. The song for Humility is actually pretty cool - I think the kids will like it, almost sounds like Hillary Duff. Anyway, I took about 30 minutes tonight at church to film some puppets singing it, and forced myself to stick to one take. (Otherwise I would spend four hours filming and increase my editing time as well!) Editing took a few hours more, but in the end, here is my FIRST MUSIC VIDEO:

With or Without Me (9.6MB QuickTime)

AND THE LYRICS, which are pretty good:

With or Without Me
Music and words by Candi Pearson Shelton, Reggie Joiner, and John Carrozza.
© 2004 FamilyWise Music (ASCAP). All rights reserved.
Which is why only small web version being posted

Guess what? I got a newsflash
And I feel like I’m gonna crash and fall
‘Cause I am not the center of it all.

I thought I was a big shot
But I don’t always have to be the best
Sometimes I just forget about the rest.

I need to be reminded that
I’m small in the grander scheme of things
I guess I’ll try humility

The world keeps spinnin’ around
’Round and ’round and it seems to do quite nicely
‘Cause it’s not about me
Each day the sun comes around
Goes up and down, it always does so faithfully
And that’s how it’s gonna be
With or without me

It’s tough for me to say this
’Cause I never believed that it was true
But I’m really good at runnin’ over you

I’m caught and I’ll admit it
Consideration wasn’t even close
‘Cause I am what’s concerning me the most

I need to be reminded that
I’m small on the larger scale of life
I think I’ll have some humble pie

The world keeps spinnin’ around
’Round and ’round and it seems to do quite nicely
‘Cause it’s not about me
Each day the sun comes around
Goes up and down, it always does so faithfully
And that’s how it’s gonna be
With or without me

I tried to steal the stage, I know
I want to make you notice me
I tried to steal the stage, but oh
Now I see, now I see, now I see, now I see

The world keeps spinnin’ around
’Round and ’round and it seems to do quite nicely
‘Cause it’s not about me
Each day the sun comes around
Goes up and down, it always does so faithfully
And that’s how it’s gonna be
With or without me

Wednesday, June 22, 2005

Little Bro Goes Major League!

As family and most friends know, my little bro got all grown up and married recently, and now right out of college at MSU, is off to Toronto (in the northern nation.... what's it called?) and is covering the Blue Jays for MLB.com. Jordan has been an advid baseball player and writer since as soon as I taught him to throw. (Yes, I taught him everything he knew about baseball up to around age 7, after that, he's always known more than me, and surpassed his baseball mentor quickly in skill.) One thing we both share is a love for writing - I write about and for children's ministry, he writes about baseball.

Well, after writing for the Lansing State Journal during college (for fun search for jordan bastian on LSJ, and get 61 pages of results!), his major league coverage has begun!

Please pray for my brother - its a tough job, he has to go to every baseball game, get there early, meet pro players, write about them, watch the game, plus he has several deadlines throughout the game (Jordan puts your schedule in comments!) and then after the game has to do more interviews. It's very stressful and time consuming. I mean, he has to do what he loves all day almost every day, and get paid to watch baseball from a press box. My heart goes out to him. Hang in there bro!

Saturday, June 18, 2005

For MacFriends Only

Introducing Pastor Karl's MAC BLOG. This won't be for everyone - but for those who already know the Mac Way of Life, or for those interested in learning more about Macs, I am starting a separate blog that will deal with MacIssues. It will be a place where I will post tips, tricks, secrets, advice, links, software recommendations, and the occasional gripe. (No, they aren't perfect... but pretty close!)

The address is www.pastorkarl.com/macblog/

I will also be inviting my MacFriends to be members of the blog so that they can add posts as well (rather than only comments). If you know me personally, and use a Mac, and would like to be a posting member of this new blog let me know. Everyone else, enjoy the MacBlog, or keep to your PC ways. But at least know you do have a choice.

Question for comments: the new blog displays the mac you see above and appears fine on my computer, but on my wife's ancient PC (no she has not switched and has been given the option) the bottom of the laptop is not visible... let me know in comments to this post if you can't see the whole powerbook when you visit the MacBlog. Thanks.

Thursday, June 16, 2005

The Safest Place to be!!

Going to church could save your life!

Do NOT ride in automobiles: they cause 20% of all fatal accidents.
Do NOT stay home: 17% of all accidents occur in the home.
Do NOT walk on the streets or sidewalks: 14% of all accidents happen to pedestrians.
Do NOT travel by air, rail, or water: 16% of all accidents happen on these.

However, only .001% of all deaths occur in church worship services, and all of these deaths are related to previous physical disorders.

THEREFORE, the safest place for you to be at any time is in church.

Acapella Star Wars

I got home today to find a package in the mail from a Kidology member named Tim O'Neill who just decided to be super nice and send me some Star Wars stuff* - and included a CD with a Star Wars Medley by an acapella band called Moose Butter. Apparently they sing a lot of songs based on pop culture, and as Tim tells me, while they are not a Christian group, their songs are very creative and fun. This is the only one I've heard so far - but it had me laughing!

The song was so cool (and funny) that I decided to upload it and share it:

HERE IS AN ACC FILE: Moose Butter Star Wars Medley (ACC)
(I don't know the official title)
HERE IS AN MP3 FILE: Moose Butter Star Wars Medley (MP3)

(Hey, Steve Tanner - looks like they will be performing at the Tanner Amphitheater in Springdale, Utah this Saturday... maybe you can get in for free!! (Did you know there was a Tanner Amphitheater?)

And as long as I am sharing Star Wars Spoof songs, here are two more you might enjoy, the first being the best I have ever heard, sung to the tune of American Pie:

Weird Al: The Saga Begins (MP3 5MB)
Source Unknown: The Microsoft Empire Strikes Back (3.2MB)

* If Tim O'Neill's generosity moves and inspires you,
you may send your Star Wars stuff to:
Kidology Inc.
Attn: Star Wars Aquisitions Dept.
830 West Main Street
Lake Zurich, IL 60047

Thursday, June 09, 2005

Hold That Tiger!

Well, I did it. I finally upgraded to the all new OS X Tiger! And was reminded again of why I changed to Mac - forget the days of spending all day (or even hours) on an operating system upgrade... pop in the DVD, after a few clicks, it started installing. Rather than sit and look at the computer screen for 20-30 minutes, I went to get a taco at Taco Bell... when I got back, the upgrade was done, and it had even rebooted and was ready to go. Wow. Back to work.

I thought the big "X" stood for "TEN" but I know now it stands for CROSSING OUT WINDOWS! (and all the problems associated with Windows)

For fun, you can check out the longest running discussion on Kidology.org - the Mac vs. PC discussion.

Saturday, June 04, 2005

Are Storm/Clone Troopers Good or Evil?

I got an e-mail today from a boy named Josh, who asked me:

Karl, were storm or clone troopers ever good ? I think they were good in the second movie but my dad says they were always evil. From Josh

It's a great question! Sorry, Josh, but your dad, (who will remain safely annonymous on Alderann), is wrong. In fact, it is such a good question, I decided to post my answer here:


When I met George Lucas at the Star Wars Convention, a kid actually asked him whether the storm trooper are good guys or bad guys. His answer was, “They are good guys who follow orders from a really bad guy.” That is the shortest answer, but rather simplistic, but good enough for the little kid who asked. But there is more to that question, and unfortunately, George Lucas is still confused on what he believes about right and wrong. But there is more to the question that I'll attempt to answer here. (non-Star Wars fans can stop reading here)

Here is my a-little-bit-longer answer:

It is important to know that there are two types of troopers. (very different and the difference is significant!)

The first is "Clone Troopers" which are not human, they are clones. They are like machines with flesh. They look human, but do not have what makes people human: a soul. They know nothing of good and evil, so are they are neither good nor evil by themselves, just as a pizza is neither good nor evil. (unless it has veggies on it, but I stray) They are like machines that simply do whatever those in charge say.

You are right, in Episode II they seem 'good' since they fight on the good side, but that is only because they are taking orders from the Jedi. (who are good) However, the clones were actually created by the Sith and given to the Jedi to encourage the war, so that makes them tools of evil in the hands of good men! Remember, the Jedi didn't even know they had ordered a clone army, but were quick to use it once they had it. The Sith were creating the war and arming both sides in order to gain power - so in that sense the clones were bad too, the Jedi just didn’t know they were being used to spread the stakes and scope of the war.

In Episdoe III you see the clone troopers go from good to bad, but that is only because Palpatine gave them evil orders (to kill the Jedi). So you see, the Clone Troopers are neither good or bad, it is their ACTIONS that are good or bad depending on who is giving them the orders. The clone trooper, Cody, is given a name (rather than a number) because Obi-won has befriended him (spoiler coming!). One second he is being friendly and giving him his light saber back, and the next moment shooting at him. It is because he knows no better, he simply follows orders, and doesn't feel anything - guilt, shame, or regret, over the orders. One minute they are friends, and the next not, which proves they never were friends to begin with, they are incapable of genuine friendship. Clones have no power to 'CHOOSE' which is the #1 thing that makes humans special and in the image of God. It is our freedom that makes us unique from all other creatures. Our freedom has made a mess of the world, but has made a real relationship with God possible. Had God made us clones, there would be no sin, but we could never really know him either. See why God made us free, even though evil results?

Me fighting a storm trooper at the EP2 Premeir.

The other type of trooper is “Storm Troopers” and they ARE human, they replace the Clone Troopers before Episode IV – unlike the clone troopers, they are morally responsible for their actions, and in that sense they are guilty of doing evil because even though they are following orders, they know what they are doing. That is why many of them flee the Empire and join the republic, because they can tell the Empire is evil and does evil with its power. The Rebellion wants to restore Good people to power. It is kinda funny that ‘rebellion’ is usually wrong, but when the authority is wrong, rebellion becomes right. Crazy world huh, where being a rebel can be good!?!? (KIDS: This doesn't mean it is ok to rebel against your parents! They would have to be asking you to do something against God's will for it to be 'good' for you to rebel!)

I hope I didn’t confuss you too much. That is the medium length answer, if you'd written to Star Wars Insider magazine, you've have probably gotten a whole artilce about it!!!! Pages and pages!!

So what is the lesson in all this?? There actually was a good line in the mostly boring movie "Kingdom of Heaven" - where the king says to a young up and coming knight something to this effect, "You will be judged for your own actions, not by whether you followed orders." The point being, we are morally responsible, and so YOU MUST DECIDE whether an action is right or wrong NO MATTER WHAT the 'authorities' over you say. If they are wrong actions, just because you were told to, does not make it 'right.' Even if you get in trouble, or lose the 'battle', better to do what is right in God's eyes. HE is the ultimate authority. Later in the movie, the same king, who is dying, offers the young knight the throne and offers to kill his rival, give him the rival's wife, and kill any men who will not join him. The knight reminds the king of his own advice, and turns down the throne (!) because it would be wrong to kill the rival, even on the king's orders! He shows he would rather not be king, than become king in the wrong way. Not many people could turn down wealth and power just because the way to get it was wrong.

BOTTOM LINE: Are you a clone trooper, storm trooper, or rebel? A clone, doing whatever you are told without thought, or a trooper, following orders even though they are wrong, or a rebel, saying, "I'll fight for what is right, even if it costs me everything!"

May the Force be with you!

Thursday, June 02, 2005

A Monster Truck... for REAL!

Star Wars met Earth on my drive to work yesterday! There I was, drivin' along in the PK Cruiser, listening' to talk radio mindin' my own bizness, when suddenly I see in my rear view mirror great clouds of smoke and explosions and cars careening off of the road... what could be causing all the choas behind me?!?!? It is an alien attack? Will I need a hitchhikers guide to the galaxy?!?!?

I whipped out my camera to record what could very well be the end of the earth as we know it...

What is that THING?!?! (note camera in shades)

With cars flying off the road in every direction, I knew this would be on the evening news, this was my chance of a lifetime to get some rare photos of an alien attack on our planet!

Would I survive to tell the tale?!??!!

I hit the PK-Nitro-Turbo-Booster, but it was no use this monstrosity of a truck was gaining on me every second! What would I do? Would this be the end???

Surely the Galactic Empire is conquering Earth!

Look at the SIZE of those PINCHERS!!!

As it got next to me, I prepared to fire my fender-anchored proton torpedoes...

The wheels were bigger than my car!

I could just make out the Empirial Pilot who was attacking me...

What would I do? How would I survive? Would this be the end of my blog? To see it racing past me, watch this video! (3MB QuickTime)

Through some fancy driving, I was able to out maneuver the evil truck and avoid any blasts from its twin ion canons.... and i slipped behind to unleash my own fire power.....

Maneuvering Behind at high speed...


I was about to pull the trigger when i heard the voice of a long lost mentor, "Use the Force, Karl!" so I turned off my targeting computer, just then, the phone rang, and Sara said, "Karl, you've turned off your targeting computer!" I answered, "I'm fine!" and settled into the last momments.... until a cop pulled up behind me.... I decided I would let him do his duty to save the earth... I pulled back (and lowered the camera) and let the copper pull ahead of me...

What? No red and blue lights?

Obviously, the cops are already on the take from the Empire, as the cop did nothing. But at least I lived to tell the story. I am sure this is only the first of many Rogator Fighters!

BY THE WAY: My parents always said I have a tendency to exaggerate stories. While not this one, I just thought I should mention that.