Wednesday, May 6, 2009

BFA? 10. The earthquake? 4.5.

Ahoy there from the finally-green-again Deutschland! I was informed one morning earlier this week that we experienced an earthquake during the night which woke up quite a few residents of our dorm while I, of course, slept right through it. Our RA Anna is from California so she has felt her fair share of earthquakes, and this one woke her up so it was a decent one. It ranked a 4.5! I wish I would have woke up and felt it because I don't think I've ever felt one, but alas. God made me a happy and heavy sleeper. Meanwhile, the sights and smells of a spring that continues to get warmer tell the boys that the end is almost near. We've had several fun events take place in the last week or two. Let me tell you about their sights and smells.

Last week the student council hosted an event called "BFA's Got Talent" where students entered and performed various talents, which were actually quite remarkable. There was a lot of singing and piano playing, but there was also xylophone playing, humorous skits, and interpretive dance. The first picture is the student who took first place. His name is Jun Kim, and he performed some sweet martial arts moves for the crowd, including the use of one of my favorite weapons of all time: the nunchuk.

And this is Reece from HBR. He sang a Lifehouse song accompanied by his friend David. They did a great job!

Oh yeah, and umm... the RA's were strongly encouraged to participate in the show with their own act. I won't link to it, but if you are interested and want to go digging for it, feel free. You can find it on my facebook or on youtube if you search for "evolution of dance BFA." Disclaimer: we are not good dancers. We realize this. But we had a blast putting it together (the day before the event itself) and performing it in front of our screaming fan base.

We enjoyed another big event on Friday night - one that is possibly the biggest all year and one that holds particular significance for the seniors and the end of the school year. Last night was JSB. The Junior Senior Banquet. It's a banquet put on by the junior class for the senior class with only juniors and seniors allowed to attend. The night included a dinner and some entertainment, most of which were tributes put on by each dorm's juniors for the senior class, a tradition that takes place every year at JSB.

An important tradition every year for HBR on the day of JSB is that all of the guys attending go outside and play pole soccer for as long as possible before running in to shower and get ready as fast as they can. I have meant to write a blog post explaining in depth the sport of pole soccer, but haven't got around to it. It is played on our basketball court behind the dorm. Basically, it's just soccer, but the basketball poles take the place of the nets. So to score you have to nail the pole. Sound difficult? It can be. But it's a lot of fun. I have improved quite a bit since first arriving. Here are some pics proving the guys were outside playing less than an hour before we left for the banquet instead of inside doing their hair and their nails.

Then it was time to come in and get ready.

Here is our senior class doing a fun pic right before we left.

We drove to a place in Muellheim where the banquet was held, and all the kids found their dates outside (if they had one).

The theme of the night was "If Dreams Come True" and focused on the future of the seniors, their dreams coming true, never never land, and all the happy thoughts that we could muster. No really, Peter Pan was at the center of the decorations and what not. HBR's very own juniors Parker Rundstrom and David Blanchard were the emcees for the night, playing the parts of Peter Pan and Captain Hook. Did I stay up late the night before creating a Captain Hook hat using cardboard, staples, red paper, glue and tape? Why, yes. Yes, I did. You just take a good look at it.

Here is a picture of Phil, once again performing a song on stage along with friends Jae and Hannah. Good job, Phil!

JSB was a lot of fun and acted as the unofficial marker for the end of the year for the seniors. Good luck to us in trying to get them to do anything from now on. They are checked out. Ready for the end. Pray for our senior class as they make all of the necessary preparations for moving on with their plans for the summer and for next school year.

We celebrated two of our seniors' birthdays on Tuesday - Aryan and Sam. Seniors are immune to creeking so that tradition was not in play. Sidenote: my birthday fell over spring break, and as of now we have not celebrated it as a dorm so I have not been creeked. We'll see what happens. Now, you know I can make a delicious carrot cake. But take a look at the delicious birthday veggie platter I made for Sam. For their birthdays, we let them choose whatever cake or dessert they want from a list that includes a veggie tray. So some of our more healthy-minded students like Sam actually do pick the vegetables. A decision that I would have never, ever, ever, ever, ever, ever made growing up. Or now for that matter.

Last week I asked Sam if he would write a paragraph for me to throw on my blog that shows a little bit of his perspective as a student. Sam has been here for five years so he knows BFA well by this point. Sam is one of the best in the dorm at encouraging other students, especially the underclassmen. He's really intentional about including others and making them feel welcome. I really appreciate that about Sam. He's one of many in our senior class that makes our job as a dorm staff a little easier. Here's what he wrote:

"I’m a senior at HBR, the best dorm ever, obviously, and Brandon, my RA asked me to write something.

Just a little about myself: my name’s Sam Lee, and I’m a Korean American. My parents serve in the central asian republic of Kyrgyzstan. I am finally graduating, and I will be attending University of Notre Dame next year.

I’d just like to share what this place, both BFA and HBR has done for me. I have been going to this school since my 8th grade year, and since my freshman year I have been a proud member of HBR. I pretty much did not have the best attitude about this place the whole 5 years I have been here. It is only recently, when I realized that I am leaving this place, that I realize how much it all meant to me. Though it was hard “growing up” without my parents always being there for me, I think it was easier for me to mature through it all. I grew to understand what it’s like to be myself, what the Christian faith really means in my life, and how to live within a community (Living in a dorm is NOT easy, I can assure you this). Amidst all this “growing,” however, there were countless times when I swore to myself that I’d leave BFA the next year (and yet, here I am, as a senior). Now, reflecting back on all those hardships, I think it really was the people that made me come back every year. The relationships I made with my “bros,” the staff, and the many friends at school are each an important part of what I am now.

But don’t get me wrong. I am way excited to go and graduate. I am actually diagnosed a fatal case of senioritis and so I’m just hoping that I make it down the aisle. :)"

Sam is one of 28 young men at HBR who you can pray for right now. I assure you that they all need your prayers and that they appreciate your ministry to them, even if they don't know about it. Sam is in this picture with me along with Stephen and Peter, two more seniors. I thank you on behalf of them and also for myself personally for your continued love and prayer. Be blessed!


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