My Friday Five: Meeting Roddy Chong & A Cool N.C. State Story

Photo: Chris White
1. Roddy Chong at Grey Stone

As I mentioned in last week's post, violin virtuoso, Roddy Chong, visited my church on Sunday to speak and perform. After the service, he held a performance workshop that delved into specific principles of performing, from on stage to even making a speech. Roddy is an accomplished violinist, having toured with the likes of Shania Twain and Celine Dion - he told us the (very) interesting story of how that came to be - and having performed for the President of the United States, the Pope and the Queen of England. He's currently lead violinist for the world famous Trans-Siberian Orchestra.

It was amazing to finally see Roddy in person and meet him (pictured right). He was invited to perform at my church last year but for a special event - a marriage banquet, actually. For obvious reasons, I wasn't allowed to go and I was disappointed to say the least. But when I learned that he would come back this year, I was stoked, especially being a musician myself. I hope Roddy can come back soon and I also hope our church's orchestra can perform with him! Now that would be awesome!

2. Nifty Idea at N.C. State

I thought this is a cool story to share and a way to brag on my college alma mater. N.C. State. Housing officials at the university noticed an oak tree at the Wolf Village Apartments was diseased and needed to be cut down. Instead of disposing it altogether, a local chainsaw artist was commissioned to carve what was left into a neat sculpture. Check out this Facebook photo album to see the finished product!

3. One Win Away

After being down 0-2 in its series with the Miami Heat, the Charlotte Hornets is just one win away from moving on in the NBA Playoffs. The Hornets return to Buzz City with a chance to clinch tonight - and I hope the team can do it to quiet all the naysayers, national media included. Make sure to catch the game at 8 p.m. on ESPN.

Let's Go Hornets!

4. Amazing Race Facebook Comment

I've had my social media accounts for several years now and it always amazes me. I guess some people believe that social media gives them a right to say whatever they want, even if it's hurtful and/or offensive. Look no further than a comment I saw on The Amazing Race's Facebook page last Friday. This season of the show features teams of popular social media personalities and one of those teams is Tyler Oakley and Korey Kuhl. Oakley is openly gay. Now, that shouldn't really matter, especially in terms of The Amazing Race. However, one person on Facebook just had to comment on it (see below).

Courtesy: Facebook/The Amazing Race

It's really sad that someone always has to start up negativity on just about anything nowadays. I mean, don't we have enough negativity without making the watching of a show such as The Amazing Race negative as well? I'm reminded of Mark 12:31 when I see things like this: "...Love your neighbor as yourself." We need more of Mark 12:31 in our world.

5. Cracker Jack Prizes Get a Huge Makeover

Yep, it's true. The makers of Cracker Jack announced that they were changing prizes in the snack bags, opting for codes that lead to digital experiences and games on your smartphone. The announcement was met with some backlash but, let's be honest, real toys and prizes disappeared from Cracker Jack packages years ago, in my opinion. Just the sign of the times, friends!

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