Nov 16, 2007

nywc: atlanta - day two, part 3

First, an observation:

Top Ten Things heard after Shane Claiborne's talk tonight: (not really, but really)
  • "I didn't pay to hear the Bible at this conference."

  • "Is he going to come back in a minute and do some more fire stuff? I've seen Hulk Hogan leave and come back before."

  • "Um..." (thought bubble: "I know that the Bible is the ultimate sermon and all but I, well... can I even go where I want to go with this for a minute?")

  • "How bout them pants on dat guy?"

  • "How come we didn't do the 'thine is the kingdom' thing during the Lord's prayer? Shouldn't we do it like Jesus did?"

  • "I'm totally doing that every week! That's exactly what the Rabbis taught their Qui-Gon-Sefer Talmuds to do on the Day of Atonement in the early church... the early church rocks. Let's go get some pizza."

  • "Did you see that guy's hair? Total weave."

  • "Hey... did you guys see my bag of free hacky sacks? Seriously... don't mess with me on this."

  • "Marko's going to get another email from Andy Stanley in about a year."

  • "That took guts."

Now, an overview...
  • Darren Streblow (comedian): I like this guy a lot... seemed a bit mechanical tonight, though. Not bad for a warm-up.

  • Third Day (music): There was a time in my life when I think Third Day was my favorite band. I still have those CDs, but now they're more a band I can listen to. Or so I thought... once they cranked up some of their older tunes - the ones I still own - I found myself compelled to join in.

  • Curt Cloninger (drama): Haven't seen Curt in a few years... this guy gets better with age. I was really impressed by the vocal mannerisms he gave his character tonight. It takes a lot of skill for a skilled speaker to intentionally speak without skill.

  • Joe Castillo (narrative sand art): Amazing again... good choice of background music, but a shade too loud.

  • Desperation Band (lead worshippers): Okay... I officially like these guys.

  • Shane Claiborne (speaker): In case you missed it, Shane did a standard intro, then played around with fire eating and did a backflip to emphasize all he "could" do at a YS convention. Then he went on to read the Sermon on the Mount... all of it... then the rest of all of it... then all of it some more... and the last all of it... and then the end of all of it... and then all of it.

    You could feel the room's constipation.

    Then he said "This is the greatest sermon ever preached," and walked off the stage.

    Tic Long came up and played the role I've played before when you bring in a band or speaker to an event and they're not what you expected. "How do I tidy this up?" we ask. Granted, Tic did it in such a way that you didn't feel much of that. But for those who needed a modern conclusion to a postmodern presentation, it fit nicely.

    This is a great trick Shane pulled out of his pocket, but you only get so many of them as a speaker. If you decide one week, for instance, to "not show up" to you speaking gig/sermon/talk to make people feel uncomfortable, you can't do it again the next time, and the next time, and the next time. Winston Chuchhill's infamous "NEVER GIVE UP" speech only goes over well once.

    Did Shane make his point? Will people talk about the value of living out what we already know instead of demanding more?

    You did read this blog thus far, did you not?

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