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This is the personal weblog of Aakash Raut, established Sept. 2002. It will cover current affairs, worldwide & national topics, local & university events, and provide insight and commentary on contemporary issues and the news from his perspective. Enjoy!

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    Friday, December 31, 2010

    Year-End Angst
    ...of a different color


    As usual, I have a ton of things to do, before the year ends (and feel like I'm FAILing, to get them done).

    This time, it's kind of unique, because they involve additional areas. But also, I recently picked up steam, and actually got some tasks completed (despite being sleep-deprived, etc...) - Anyway: It's all covered, on my Twitter stream.

    http://twitter.com/AakashRaut

    Right now, there's a mixture of:
    The seasonal angst, the repeated regrets, the cabin fever, the agony of time slipping away (and passing), the fear of missing this key opportunity (the end of the year!) to get things done, which I should've earlier this year, but for which this could be a good time to take care of them...

    There's that, plus the fear I'm forgetting something.

    And also: The regret that I'm not out right now (the regular West Side Young Adult NewYear'sEve gathering isn't there today... I was glad to have been at those, in 2002, last year, and the year before (though in both of the latter cases, I didn't arrive till shortly after midnight, as I was doing... Well, THIS type of thing! ;-).

    On the up side, however...

    Thanks to the incredible Tyler Sickmeyer (via Twitter), along with a boost from Joyce Meyer, for providing the inspiration, to break out of the rut this early-evening.

    I've gotten the ball rolling, and am now going to start sending the year-end [e-mail] thank-you notes! (Really wish I'd gotten the snail-mail ones in the mail earlier, but they will be going out soon.)

    And who knows... I may actually get a chance to go out tonight (or will it be next year, before I get out of the house?), after all!


    In any case...

    As I said, seven years ago (wow!!) ~ PLEASE DO NOT allow what's happening on my end (both externally, and in) put a damper on your holiday spirit.

    Please STOP reading this, right NOW, and head over to a church service (or church gathering).

    At West Side, the Singles Groups is having their gathering (which some of the Young Adults will be at), despite there not being the WS YA annual party, as is usually done.

    In nearby Mt. Pulaski, there's a public, community-wide event, sponsored by a local church.


    [I've never been to Holy Ground Coffee House; I really wish I had been. They kick of the Countdown to New Year's at 9:00 PM tonight.]


    Happy New Year 2011

    Or, if you're in our neck of the state, you could also head downtown, to First Night Springfield, or perhaps to Mt. Pulaski, for their community-wide festivities!!


    [Also: From what I've heard, those tornados have passed away, from this area at least, by now.]


    So, stop reading this, and go out! (Or if you're staying at home, do something else.)

    Be safe this season.

    And also (like we advocated, for Thanksgiving), put aside the worry and angst, re: the issues/debates/problems that have been plaguing our minds... and enjoy!

    Merry CHRISTmas (yes, still! ;-) and happy new year, to you and yours!!


    Friday, December 24, 2010

    Here is Pieter Friedrich's Christmas Eve 2003 entry from the now-retired 'Deux Ego' weblog:

    12/24/2003: "December 24th: Spurgeon's Evening Devotional"

    "'The glory of the Lord shall be revealed, and all flesh shall see it together.'--Isaiah 40:5

    "We anticipate the happy day when the whole world shall be converted to Christ; when the gods of the heathen shall be cast to the moles and the bats; when Romanism shall be exploded, and the crescent of Mohammed shall wane, never again to cast its baleful rays upon the nations; when kings shall bow down before the Prince of Peace, and all nations shall call their Redeemer blessed. Some despair of this. They look upon the world as a vessel breaking up and going to pieces, never to float again. We know that the world and all that is therein is one day to be burnt up, and afterwards we look for new heavens and for a new earth; but we cannot read our Bibles without the conviction that-

    "'Jesus shall reign where'er the sun
    Does his successive journeys run.'

    "We are not discouraged by the length of his delays; we are not disheartened by the long period which he allots to the church in which to struggle with little success and much defeat. We believe that God will never suffer this world, which has once seen Christ's blood shed upon it, to be always the devil's stronghold. Christ came hither to deliver this world from the detested sway of the powers of darkness. What a shout shall that be when men and angels shall unite to cry 'Hallelujah, hallelujah, for the Lord God Omnipotent reigneth!' What a satisfaction will it be in that day to have had a share in the fight, to have helped to break the arrows of the bow, and to have aided in winning the victory for our Lord! Happy are they who trust themselves with this conquering Lord, and who fight side by side with him, doing their little in his name and by his strength! How unhappy are those on the side of evil! It is a losing side, and it is a matter wherein to lose is to lose and to be lost for ever. On whose side are you?"--Charles Spurgeon



    Blast the Backlog (Christmastime!)

    In an entry below (re: Mayor Davlin's passing), I mentioned how major events will break through the "backlog" of planned entries that I have here, which has caused me to feel bad about posting new content (when there's so much other stuff, pending).

    While tragic events will break through the backlog, and create new content, joyous events can also do this.

    I know that I shouldn't have this type of hang-up, when it comes to posting here (and should be blogging more on-a-whim, as most people do); It does make me feel bad though, having so much good content, that isn't completed or published. I am thinking of a reboot-type thing, on this weblog (perhaps "University Blog 2.0" - like we have Web2.0 :-). In any case, I need to do something, to jump-start things here (and I have other blogs, as well), especially since I may be using blogging as a part-time revenue 'job'.


    I am actually at home, between Christmas Eve services right now (and still need to have dinner, with the RedBull!), but I am saving a few drafts here, which I plan to publish this time (like the year before last).

    Merry CHRISTmas Eve, all!!


    Monday, December 20, 2010

    16 minutes till the filing deadline, for local races (here in Springfield, IL, and probably the other places in Illinois, as well).

    I'm wondering whether I should've run for an office, this time around.

    [I'm about to make a list of offices that are up, so as to at least assuage my conscience.]

    (I know which offices are up, but am about to compile a full list, with the candidates, for each position... That should help clear things up.)


    Tuesday, December 14, 2010

    Mayor of Springfield, Illinois - Timothy Davlin

    Mayor Tim Davlin


    Though I missed a friend's call this morning (which I'm assuming was regarding this same news), I woke up today (after sleeping in too late, once again!), as a couple of service workers were at home, one of whom asked the other if he'd heard the news today, regarding Mayor Tim Davlin; he said he'd been getting messages about that, all day. "That's crazy," they remarked.

    I thought that the news may be regarding some policy or personal-based development (several such items had recently been in the news). When doing a web search on my Blackberry however, I was shocked at what it actually was.


    Our Mayor, here in the (Illinois) capital city, was found dead today, of an apparent suicide (though the cause of death is uncertain, at this point). The Illinois State Police, from what I've read/heard, called a press conference, but didn't reveal any information.


    I have been a critic of the Mayor (and our successful actions in the last Municipal elections probably didn't make him too happy!), but he was a decent guy, who had tough decisions to make, and faced a lot of heat, from his fellow Democrats, in addition to Republicans. The Mayor was also respected by those, across the board.

    I will post more on this, as the situation develops...

    For now, please keep the Davlin family in your prayers.

    ===========================
    Update: From daughter Tara Davlin (via Rich Miller's Capitol Fax)




    Note: As mentioned numerous times before, I've had a backlog of blog entries (many miles long, and going back years!), of potential [or partially-constructed!] entries here. It is so frustrating that I haven't been able to make progress, insofar as that... Looking back, I realized that even more-recently, I've never published recaps from Right Nation 2010, as I was supposed to.

    (I shouldn't be so OCD-like & conscientious about this, and should instead blog more on a whim, like most people do. That's been quite a challenge though; Also, busy-ness, + 'blogging fatigue,' interferes with blogging, not to mention other tasks!)

    Sometimes, however, major events [whether Blagojevich-based, urgency-based, or in some cases, people's sudden passings], break through this backlog. This is one of those cases.