Navy Bedroom

I had fun creating my daughter’s bedroom look.

  1. Painted wall Sherwin Williams Naval color.
  2. Made red oak headboard using french cure + hand scraping + dark walnut stain
  3. Amy selected the bedding.
  4. Created a Rorschach Ink Blog on 500 lbs. water color paper.
  5. Added in some lamps and night stands from Ikea.
  6. Created a unique wire hanging system for the painting. (Shhhhh…those are actually toilet paper holders but you can’t tell and no one but you knows.)
  7. Building a wardrobe but not finished yet.

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Lance Armstrong and Oprah Night Two: 3 Reflections

Night two of Lance Armstrong with Oprah brought something we hadn’t seen in night one, emotion.

1. Contrition and sorrow. We saw a wee bit of it? This was most evident when Lance attempted to not break down as he spoke of telling his 13-year-old son the truth and asking him not to defend his dad anymore.  This was also evident Oprah read the letter from the mom of the leukemia patient. Lance does have feelings, they have been suppressed in order to maintain control and win=at-all-costs.

2. Process. Maybe Lance has been hanging out with Cowboys coach Jason Garrett, but the word came up many times in the interview. This shows there is some wisdom present in his mind and/or counselors. He has spent a lifetime creating a mental pattern of win at all costs.

3. Freedom through Truth. Oprah encouraged and challenged Lance at then end of the interview to worry less about Lance the competitor and allow these events to become Lance the better man.

It appears his ex-wife Kristen still has a massive amount of influence upon Lance and is encouraging him to heal. As a follower of Christ, she has exhibited grace and forgiveness to Lance throughout their divorce and this ordeal.

She is even supportive now, which is self-less, because Lance’s incredible loss of sponsorship money surely affects the 30% child support (if standard Texas law applies) she receives. He is blessed by God to have her in his life in this way.

Personal thoughts: Oprah ended the interview quoting what Lance has said earlier….The truth will set you free. While the little t truth is very necessary to his recovery process, the big T truth is more important. Christ said, in addition to the verse alluded to above, “I am the way, the TRUTH, and the life, no one comes to the Father but through me.”

If anyone needed a perfect Father in their life, it is Lance. It appears that much of his drive to succeed at any cost finds it root in the lack of relationship with his biological father. He stated that he and his mother never go back and talk about the past. But the past is present with us all whether we talk about it on not. The road we walk (or ride) on today comes from the past. My prayer is that Lance would embrace the pain, find the root of all of this, and bring it to God, the Perfect Father.

Lance Armstrong and Oprah Night One: 5 Things to Note

So Lance comes clean.  While it was interesting that Oprah started the interview with simple Yes and No questions–was this to help Lance or clear the air of the biggest question first–I was waiting for the deeper questions to see what was going on under the hood in Lance’s heart. Perhaps we’ll get more of these type questions in night two.

As the interview proceeded, here are 5 things to note regarding Lance’s answers and how he communicated.

1. Omerta stands. In Italian, omerta means secret. Cyclist have historically practiced omerta. It is similar to the code of blue in the police force where everything within the force stays in the force. Armstrong refused to name names or even hint at implicating anyone else–even Dr. Ferrari, who is fairly well known to have been a PED supplier. Armstrong always despised those who broke omerta in regards to him, and it appears he will not break it for others.

Some thought he might go with a scorched earth policy, throwing everyone under the bus to make himself look better, or at least to emphasize the “everyone was doing it” mentality.

If he has to testify before USADA under oath, it will be interesting to see if he starts naming others in exchange for a reduced ban which would allow him to resume triathlons again. Or, perhaps his hatred for USADA will override this and he will keep silent.

2. Liar vs. A Lie. Several times in the interview when Lance disagreed with something–such as the claim that he doped in ’09 and ’10 Tour de France–it seemed he wanted to go into the old mode of disparaging the source. You could read the internal battle on his face.

Instead, he would pause, gather himself and call the statement a lie, but not resort to attacking the person’s character. This will hopefully be a developing change in his responses.

3. Lack of emotion. Lance likes control. He stated so in the interview repeatedly. A lot of people who grow up loving control learn to suppress their emotions because feelings are seen as a weakness. Even in his apologies to those he hurt, there appeared to me to be a lack of emotional understanding of what damage he had truly done.

Perhaps, he does possess this contrition and regret  and manages to quash it in public. Or possibly because of extended suppression he is emotionally calloused. Just maybe, as he walks out from under the shadows of denial and into sunshine of the truth, he will thaw over time.

4. Parsing. There was a consistent parsing in order to define truth, as when he seemed to justify the things he about Betsy Andreau by saying I called her crazy and a b&$%#, but never fat. Somehow, the fact the she added this claim to his comments, if indeed she did, relegated the two other insults having minimal effect in Lance’s mind. Perhaps from years of being an athlete he thinks calling someone fat is one of the worst things that you can do, and the other two terms aren’t as offensive.

5. Source of pain.  Armstrong spoke of a relentless will to win at all costs “wherever that came from.” If you read his life story, it is pretty easy to see where that insatiable desire arose. His father was an alcoholic that created havoc and his step-dad appears to be a militaristic disciplinarian absent of an emotional connection with Lance. His life seems to be centered around showing those two men and himself that he doesn’t really need anyone to be a success and that he is a winner. In his recovery, Armstrong will have to wrestle with these two relationships to gain freedom.

Stay tune for night two this evening……

Poor Kazahkstan. Another Public Relations Blunder.

At a recent medal ceremony,  the host country, Kuwait,  played the national anthem of Kazakhstan. Except, oops, it wasn’t the true national anthem it was one done by actor Sasha Cohen as his character Borat.

Here is the real Kazakhstan National Anthem

The Borat anthem was accidentally played by organizers at a medal ceremony at the Arab Shooting Championships. Gold medalist Maria Dmitrienko stood on the podium looking bemused at the mix-up, which was described as a “scandal” by Kazakh Foreign Ministry spokesman Ilyas Omarov.

The false anthem – which extols Kazakhstan’s potassium and prostitutes and memorably contains the line “Kazakhstan – greatest country in the world, all other countries are run by little girls” – was played in the 2006 movie Borat: Cultural Learnings of America for Make Benefit Glorious Nation of Kazakhstan.

Quote from The Atlantic.

Former Soviet Kazakhstan is Central Asia’s largest economy and hopes to become one of the world’s top energy exporters by 2020.