Work was as busy as it has been. Actually, it wasn’t quite as busy today, but it was still busy enough that I’m behind a little. It didn’t help that today is payday.

Actually, it did help that today was payday. Moneyday more like it. Finances had slipped back into “a little tight” and the paycheck was a decent one. On top of that, when I got home I found our state income tax return in the mailbox. Then, on top of that, there have been several large wedding photo orders placed lately on my Exposure Manager account, so that will bring me another nice little extra.

Allow me to be a bit spiritual here. While not keeping me up at night, our financial status over the last few months has been vexing me a little. We give 10% to the church, which I see not as an obligation but as an expression of faith. It really goes back to when Amanda and I first moved here and started going to Port City Community Church. We were broke. I mean, we had no money. Despite this we decided to tithe, even though it obviously put more strain on our wallets. As Amanda says, we don’t know how we got through these times and paid our bills, but everything turned out alright because we trusted.

So, getting back to now, even though things were a little tighter than they had been, at least on paper, we didn’t stop giving 10%, and now it looks like we’re coming through the other side of it.

Small group didn’t quite work out as planned tonight. Rob had said earlier in the week that he knew he wouldn’t be able to come due to an after-hours work function, but Kristen was still planning on coming. Well, it turned out that Kristen’s boss was coming to town and was taking everybody out to eat tonight, so she couldn’t make it either. Elliot called sounding like crap and said he was sick, but that Melissa was still planning on coming. Melissa called and said, for reasons that aren’t important here, that she wasn’t going to be able to make it. So it was just me and Amanda and Adam and Meagan.

Today is Adam and Meagan’s one-year “marriage” anniversary, as opposed to their “wedding” anniversary, which will happen in about nine months. See, they were already engaged, but Adam, a Navy medical officer, was shipped to Iraq, so they had a civil ceremony before he left without really letting anyone know then had a full wedding back in March I believe.

Meagan brought a carrot cake, Adam’s favorite, to share with us.

Despite half the group missing the discussion about The Case for Christ went well. I’d never lead book discussion and there were only a couple discussion questions at the end of the chapter, but our conversation grew pretty organically. After a while we just talked about different things- TV and us guys having a propensity for getting up from doing things with our women to check on a download or some such.

After they left Amanda and I watched yesterday’s season finale of Lost. (Spoilers ahead.)

So Charlie wasn’t able to escape his fate, which really sucks. Yes, they killed Charlie. They switched things up on us with the flashback this week. Instead of being a backstory telling us something about Jack, it was actually a flashforward showing what a wreck he was after being rescued from the island. A gutsy move. He had a ragged beard, was suicidal and addicted to meds. He also mentioned his father as though he were still living, although his dadhad been dead except in flashbacks for the entire show. Jack went to someone’s funeral, presumably someone from the island, and it looked to me like the coffin was a bit short. They showed Kate at the end of it, too.

Russo was united with her daughter, who has been calling Ben her dad. Hurley saved Jin, Sayid and Bernie (?) as well as possibly Sawyer and Juliette. The chick who parachuted down to the island was killed by Locke, but Jack still used her satellite phone to call in a rescue. However, Ben and Locke kept saying he made a mistake and Charlie, with his last efforts, wrote a message to Desmond telling him that the ship the woman came from was not from Penelope, who has been looking for Desmond. That means there’s something fishy about the people who are on their way to the island. Something dreadful, I’m sure. All that, plus the killing of two significant Others jam-packed into a two-hour spectacular. Can’t wait until next season.

It really sucks that they killed Charlie.

After Lost Amanda went to bed. I played the Halo 3 Beta with Michael (and, for a few rounds until he went to bed, Chris too). We did well the first few rounds, not so well the last few. I actually had the most kills one time, but it was because someone was driving me around in the warthog while I shot people with the machine gun mounted on it. I cleared a five-star rating on all the songs on the easy on Guitar Hero II to unlock an achievement and played a couple songs on medium. Crazy how just adding one extra note/button to the mix changes it up so much.

Oh, I did something that I sort of regretted at the bank today. The lady I usually get beckoned me to the counter as she was finishing up something with a stack of $10 bills and asked what she could do for me today. Joking, because she had a stack of bills in her hand, I said, “You can give me that if you want.” She smiled and said it wouldn’t be worth the lawyer bills as I handed her my check and deposit slip. After a beat I said, “I probably shouldn’t have said something like that in a bank.” I let her know I realized I made a faux pas, but I’m a little embarrassed about having said something that could have been so misconstrued.

Zach Dotsey