Category Archives: Uncategorized

Sep 18, 2012

Performing a Wedding Ceremony is a Thrill and Honor

Tomko wedding

I recently served as officiant for my friend’s wedding. I’ve known Mike Tomko for a few years now, and have gotten to know his now-wife Tabitha over the past year or so. When they asked me to become an ordained minister and marry them, I asked them if they were serious, and I asked them if they were sure. After about 24 hours had passed with no recantation of their request, I got a bit excited. This was new territory for me.

Using the Universal Life Church’s website, I became ordained, and even ordered a certificate to prove it. That piece of paper cost $6.99, plus like $7.50 in shipping. They always get you with the shipping!

After receiving the certificate, I posted a picture of it online and Steve Kaufman of the APA saw it and sent me an email. He’s performed ceremonies in the past and was able to provide me several scripts. I wrote the wedding, shared it with Tomko and Tabitha in a Google Doc, and they were able to edit it. Once we had it finalized, I exported it to a PDF and put it on my iPad in iBooks. I used a large font so I could sufficiently see it. It was an 8-page document – seven swipes to the left and they were married.

The morning of the ceremony, Mike took the wedding script and broke it down into tweets using the hashtag #tomkotember. He loaded up my account on his laptop, along with Tabitha’s account and his own. He then set up a wifi hotspot at The Campbell House Museum, which is where they had the ceremony. Shelley Satke Niemeier of Campbell House used Mike’s laptop and cut, pasted and tweeted the wedding as it progressed. She did a phenomenal job!

Joe Holleman wrote about it on, and Allison Babka put together a Storify that contains the best of the best tweets. Be sure to check it out.

This picture was taken about two minutes after they were married.

One last item of note: in the comment section of Joe Holleman’s stltoday story, a pastor left a comment concerning my willingness and/or ability to be a real pastor to Mike and Tabitha. His comment, in its entirety: “I hope this freshly internet-ordained pastor is willing to do the hard work of helping this young couple with their marriage and isn’t just doing a wedding. Real pastors don’t just help people get married, they help them stay married.” I responded “Don’t worry. I’ll be there for them.”

Without going into too much detail, I’ve noticed a tendency among folks like Pastor Patrick to, how shall I put this, not be able to sit still when happy people carve out a happy life for themselves outside the confines of their purview. It seems to make them downright fidgety. As a human being of 41 years, I can provide people like Mike and Tabitha advice along much the same lines as a pastor of faith. The words, messages and meaning might be different, but they won’t be inherently less effective. Mike and Tabitha made some personal choices that made great sense for them, and my sensibilities largely match up with theirs. Coupled with the fact that I love these people, I was thrilled and honored to officiate the ceremony. I believe they will be quite happy together, and I’ll always be available to offer my perspective on marriage, kids, cats, etc.

Sep 13, 2012

Saving Nikola Tesla’s Lab

Nikola Tesla

I blogged about this NPR story on Falk Harrison’s blog. There is an effort afoot to save Nikola Tesla’s lab. Have a look at the blog post, listen to the NPR audio, and enjoy the “new-fashioned” way to generate interest, awareness and even $1.2 million in donations.

Sep 12, 2012

Budweiser 9/11 Ad – Well-meaning or Opportunistic?

The ad below aired over 10 years ago, and we’re probably a more cynical and divided nation now than we were then. Just look at the comments on the YouTube video in question.

Here’s the commercial for your viewing pleasure:

Like Neo said in the Matrix, this is a problem of choice. Maybe people don’t choose how to view the world, but rather their experiences shape them. For me, I don’t look at Budweiser’s effort here and see anything untoward. I think it is sometimes possible to choose how to view the world, and I choose glass is half full. Your opinions may vary (so let’s hear ‘em below).

Sep 11, 2012

My Appearance on “The Moffett Message” with Sean Moffett

Two things about this video:

1. Thank you Sean for having me on your show. It was my honor, and I think we had a great conversation.
2. I really apologize for my audio quality. I always just use the internal mic in my Macbook Pro, and wow it sounds really crappy in this video. You really have to turn it up to hear me, and sometimes my voice cuts out. It sorta makes it unwatchable at times, and that’s completely my fault. It was actually a great conversation, so I’m kind of bummed about this. I need to look into getting a good external microphone. Anyway, Sean I am sorry about this.

In case things go haywire with the embedded video above, here’s a direct link.

Aug 26, 2012

My Apperance on St Louis Presents

I recently appeared on “St. Louis Presents” on STL-TV with hosts Rob Desir and Aprille Trupiano to discuss Twitter. These two were a delight to be with, and both were very interested in using Twitter in a more enhanced way.

Thank you Ellen Soule for bringing this opportunity to me!

My appearance begins at the 40:40 mark – click here to be taken directly to that point. I’m done by around 47:45.

Aug 14, 2012

Advertising as Seen Through The Eyes of an 8 Year Old

Well, she’s only 8 and she already thinks the advertisers are lying.