For those of you who don’t know, Shelf/Ipod/Fridge is a chance to share what you are reading, listening to, and drinking. I would encourage all loyal readers (and even marginal for that matter) to write a shelf/ipod/fridge post as well and link to it in the comment section of this post (Jake, since you have a iphone you have no excuse not to participate). If enough people participate we could make this a monthly endeavor, sharing our different tastes, and turning our voyeuristic online endeavors to somewhat of an actual community.


The Legacy of Sovereign Joy by John Piper

– Just finished this phenomenal mini-biography of Augustine, Luther, and Calvin. Simply to hear the stories of conversion, the struggles (Luther’s bad mouth), and love for God that these great reformers was such a great encourage to continue to “contend for the faith.”

Getting Things Done by David Allen

– I am rereading this wonderful book on organizational principles. It has revolutionized how I view organizing my life. I am rereading it becuase I am having a hard time sticking to the implementation of these principles. This is a book I will probably read two or three times a year until I am able to master these great tools for productivity.

JPS Commentary on Ecclesiastes
by Michael Fox

– Other than having to read this book backwards (with the JPS you literally read from the right to left, except for the page itself) I love this commentary. I have relied primarily on the WBC series, but was pleased with what I read about this in the two reference surveys I have (Commentary and Reference survey are basically entire books that serve as annotated bibliographies for Bible commentaries). It is great to be as honest with hermeneutics as Solomon was in addressing life under the sun. What a splendid battle it is to study Ecclesiastes.


Black Holes and Revelations by MUSE

– Progressive rock at its best. I always say that I like my emo with a lot of rock, but I’m not even sure MUSE is emo. Just check out the link, they’re wonderful.

Under the Iron Sea by Keane

– Keane lands somewhere between MUSE and Coldplay. Note: I cannot stand Coldplay, so Keane is my limit for piano led whiny Brittish pop/alternative rock. That being said, Under the Iron Sea, is one of 3 albums I have gotten in the past few years that I can listen from beginning to end. Listening to them simply makes me happy, and in a good move. Plus, its one of 5 cd’s I own that I can listen to with my wife.

Greatest Hitz by Limp Bizkit

– Yes I am serious, and yes this is proof positive that I graduated high school in 1999. But, after picking this up recently I was amazed at how many songs were still really good. I mean, if you had asked me in 2000 whether I thought Korn or Limp Bizkit would still be on my player in 10 years, I would have not hesitated to say Korn. Yet Counterfeit, Nookie, Re-Arranged, N 2 Gether Now, and Rollin’ all blared out of my window yesterday. Note: yes I did turn it down when at stop lights, I don’t want people to know how much of a loser I really am.


Only had one beer in my fridge over the last month, so I’ll modify this one a bit.

Fat Tire by New Belgium

– Sometimes you just have to go back to old trusted beers. Fat Tire never disapoints as a amber, slightly bitter Ale. And, I am eagerly anticipating their fall seasonal to be consumed shortly.

Cabernet Sauvignon  by Chateau Ste. Michelle

– Probably the best deep red you’re getting for around 10 bucks. And for my money, this dry-red is great with a juicy red steak, or kicking back on your porch smoking a…

Tobacco Pipe by Romeo and Juliet

– Yup, I have taken up pipe smoking. While it is working and making me feel smarter, I have not quite gotten used to how to correctly keep the tobacco lit. It is quite fun learning though. If anyone has any suggestions on what kind of tobacco to smoke please comment. I am most interested in a very aromatic blend


fridge/grill slash Ipod/Shelf

In the Fridge

Redhook India Pale Ale (IPA)

This is my third favorite IPA (#1 Mongoose IPA, Hales Ales – Seattle, WA; #2 Bridgeport IPA, Bridgeport Brewery – Somewhere in Oregon), although it is the best IPA I can find in Vegas (#2 Thunderhead IPA, Pyramid Brewing – Seattle, WA). Nice and hoppy with a phenomenal aftertaste. While it is a pale ale, it is not the best beer for 100 degree days due to the fact that maximum flavor is achieved after sitting out for about 15-20 minutes. The better a beer is, the better it tastes when warmer. I’m not saying a beer shouldn’t be cold, I’m simply working off a premise all beer snobs are well aware of: lighter beers are best ice cold because they lack substantial flavor. That being said, while the IPA is great, I’m drinking it inside, not on the porch. And since we have a great new porch, my second beer is the …

Pryamid Curve Ball

No beer says spring and summer like Pryamid’s Curve Ball. This Kölsch style beer perfectly exemplifies spring and summer. Named after a summer staple (baseball) this is the perfect beer for sitting out on the porch with a couple buddies talking about sports, theology, or anything for that matter. I cannot say enough for this beer except: ITS NOT IN MY FRIDGE. Somehow every liquor store within a 20 mile radius hates me and my buddy Derek as when went on a journey to find curve ball’s last week. Such a great spread that most Vegas liquor store have (all the locals will understand my sarcasm here) they have neglected this great beer. Although, Lee’s did have Butt Monkey. Hey Ryan, if only they had Ass Goblin.

Longhammer IPA (by Red Hook)

Can you believe that Red Hook came out with a second IPA? Neither could I becuase they packaged it completely different. I actually passed this up at the store a couple times and would have missed it completely had not my buddy Derek bought it for me as a bartering trade for some stuff he took home from our yard sale last weekend. This is one of the smoothest IPA’s I have ever tasted, which depending on how big of a hop-head you are, is either a good or bad thing. I would say this to those of you who have not had a good IPA experience: go buy a sixer of Longhammer IPA, it will change your perspective.

NOTE: I wrote all that down before I read this quote by a concerned drinker, and someone in the know.

pirateale (1 month ago)

i was very disappointed in this new Red Hook IPA, then i was delt another blow to find out the “long hammer” replaced their original IPA. Altho the long hammer is far more palatable for average beer drinkers, hop heads beware, low IBUs simplistic hop and malt profiles overall a light session ale. this is a very small beer

michaelyblam (1 month ago)
According to Redhook – the original IPA and the Long Hammer is one of the same beer. There’s no difference except the name.

Alright, I’m a moron, onto the grill (wait I’ve been moving and haven’t had time to grill). Well then how about a quick shelf/ipod

On the Shelf

Overcoming Sin and Temptation by John Owen

Everything Justin Taylor and John Piper say about Owen is true. He’s amazing. One concept he has helped drive home to me which has had a tremendous affect on my walk with God and my preaching is the idea that sin comes from inside us, not from out in the world. That might seem like a simple/stupid point, but slide down that rabbit hole with your own soul and see how deep it goes.

Keller’s Gospel Class PDF’s

All that gospel saturated, foundational stuff you come to love by Keller, but given in a 200+ page leader’s guide, and 80+ page small group format. Just great to meditate on. If you haven’t read or listened to anything by Keller click on our links and get ready to achieve super-Christian status.

Bible passages about the Word of God

For the next 5-7 days I am going to be flushing out some thoughts on how we receive the word of God, and how we perceive his grace. Whether we like it or not most of us view life through a postmodern hermanuetic (the meaning of the author is in our interpretation not in the authors intent. For further study of the postmodern hermanuetic and God’s Word, read this great book), and that deeply affects the way we take in the scriptures as well as they way we perceive God’s grace. Should be good times.

On the ipod

Since my ipod’s on the fritz and I got scolded by one of the eight people in my church for listening to “secular” music, this will be brief.

Bloc Party, Bloc Party, and Bloc Party (I freaking love bloc party)

As always, feel free to write what’s in/on your fridge/grill or shelf/ipod. Although no one ever does.


in the fridge/on the grill

In the spirit of shelf/ipod, I thought I would start a fridge/grill. It’s spring, and if we’re going to take full advantage of it, then we’d better be drinking a good assortment of good spring-time beers, and grilling like mormons have babies. Hopefully this post will spur us on to trying different beers, and ways of grilling each month.

In The Fridge

Sam Adams White Ale
A really light and refreshing beer. It is a blonde for sure, yet it retains many flavors a typical blonde would not. This is probably why Sam Adams decided to serve a White Ale as a late winter seasonal. Which is nice now because stores have it heavily discounted (4 bucks off a 12 pack), allowing one to enjoy a great spring beer at a great low price.

How the guys at Guinness thought you could replicate a nitro tap system (the tap system that makes Guinness so thick) in a bottle by using a plastic rocket doohickey is beyond me. It’s like being really good friends with the hottest girl in high school. You get to hang out all the time, but never get to make out. That’s what drinking Guinness in a bottle is like. Yes, I was suckered in to buying this because of St. Patty’s Day.

Smirnoff Ice
This needs some explaining. Remember when we first turned 21, and our chickified beer selection was limited to Mike’s Hard Lemonade, Smirnoff Ice, and Hard Cider’s, yikes. Well I had some guys over to watch UNLV lose to Oregon last week, and Ben brought over some Smirnoff Ice’s. How fitting. Ben did take offense when his selection was referred to as chick beer, to which I replied, “Hey Ben, that was Vicky that called it chick beer. Her being a chick qualifies her to make that assertion. So drink your chick beer.”
Good times.

On the Grill

Barbecue-Flavored Chicken
I make my own rub for this using paprika as my main spice. I add a few shakes of crushed red pepper, some fresh ground pepper (the Mitch Hedberg joke about fresh pepper is playing in your head right now isn’t it), a dash of garlic powder and Italian seasoning. Slap some Jack Daniel’s BBQ Sauce on for the last few minutes. Serve with asparagus and a good porter. Ah, Spring.

Anything less than a half-pound per patty is unacceptable. A light amount of Mesquite Steak, and 15 minutes of glory on the grill gives you a wonderful medium burger. The key to a great burger is plenty of fresh toppings. I always keep red onion, tomato, green leaf lettuce, and spicy brown mustard on hand for great burgers and sandwiches whenever I want. I cook so much more now that I keep the right condiments around.

I never realized how wonderful kabobs were until Vicky started making them for me to grill. They cook fast and easy, they don’t involve silverware, and the include veggies. Note: if I ever had to prepare kabobs myself I would never cook them. Thank you Jesus for my smoking hot, kabob preparing wife.