Gregory Milinovich

Author's details

Name: Gregory Milinovich
Date registered: March 7, 2012

Latest posts

  1. the unlikely orange: the faces of a boy turning three — July 31, 2014
  2. the unlikely orange: the chronicles of prydain — July 29, 2014
  3. the unlikely orange: back to camp — July 26, 2014
  4. the unlikely orange: happy birthday, Quinton! — July 25, 2014
  5. the unlikely orange: chase’s big day — July 23, 2014

Most commented posts

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  3. agentorange: counting our bones: a prayer for general conference — 1 comment

Author's posts listings

Jul 31 2014

the unlikely orange: the faces of a boy turning three

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holy happy birthday, batman!

last week we celebrated the third birthday of our own little caped crusader, and it was a festive occasion! even though no one seems to believe it, i did indeed make and decorate the batman cake he wanted, and it turned out okay, if imperfect.  but he didn't notice....he loved it!

but probably not as much as he enjoyed the gift portion of the festivities, which included several lego items, much to his delight.

he is a blessed boy, of course, but he is also a tremendous blessing, not only to his mommy and daddy, but to his brothers, as well.  we are so fortunate.  he keeps us laughing, guessing, dancing, and tickling him as much as we can.  like any three year old, he can be a stubborn child, trying on his own new ideas and testing out the boundaries and the consequences for crossing them, but even those tries and tests have a certain amount of joy connected to them.  he is just fully alive, freshly so, and contagiously offering all that life to all of us.  we are blessed for it.  we are blessed by him.  we are just blessed.  period.

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Jul 29 2014

the unlikely orange: the chronicles of prydain

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a couple of weeks ago, after encouraging jackson to read it, i was inspired to read a series i had read before in my early teen years, and i am so pleased that i did.

i had read lloyd alexander's "prydain chronicles" some 25 years ago, but had forgotten a great many of the details of the story that make this such a rich literary adventure.  reading it again, here in my late 30's, was just as rewarding as i remember it being when i was a teenager, if not more so.

the series consists of five books, admittedly aimed at younger readers, (but literature aimed at younger readers in the 1960's feels a bit more advanced than much of what is aimed at 13-year olds today), which tell the story of a young man who lives and operates under the undistinguished title of "assistant pig keeper."  this lowly position is held by a boy named Taran, who wants more than anything to be a hero.  eventually, the adventures of his life afford him the opportunity to become just that, but he learns along the way that being a hero is not exactly what he thought it would be.  in this, then, it becomes a series of stories about identity, and discovering who we are based on our decisions and our actions, rather than our titles and our heritage.

but i'm making it sound too boring.  it is pure fantasy, with terrifying villains and honorable heroes.  it's got battles and escapes and spells and trolls and dwarves and a pig that can give prophecies.  it is a wonderful story of companions, Taran, with eilowyn (a girl about his age), fflewddur fflam (a traveling bard with a magical harp which breaks a string every time f.f. "colors" the truth a bit), and gurgi (a loyal beast of unknown species).  it is full of adventure and loss, victory and sorrow, and, in the end, a wonderfully exhilarating climax, followed by the real coming-of-age of a true hero.

the story is generally based on the lore of wales, with all sorts of welsh spellings and the geography of such a land, but lloyd alexander took the colors of those ancient tales and used them to paint his own picture, one with a strong moral character which wonderfully never becomes didactic or heavy-handed in its morality.

i would highly recommend these books (two of them are newberry award winners [and the first two were merged into one of the most disappointing disney films of all time, called "the black cauldron"]) to young readers, and maybe even to not-so-young readers like myself who would enjoy not only a fun, fantastical adventure, but would also like a reminder about what it means to truly be yourself.

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Jul 26 2014

the unlikely orange: back to camp

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it's time.

time for the steelers to hit the practice fields in the hot summer sun.  time for the sounds of pads hitting pads, coaches shouting instructions, and whistles piercing the campus air at st. vincent's.  it's time for the steelers to go back to camp and try to fix what ended up as an 8-8 mess last year.

and it is time for me to enter my yearly promised land of sports-fandom.  i get 3+ months of baseball and football together, and it is the best quarter of a year that a baseball/football guy could ask for.

so please excuse me if i revel in this for a bit, with a gigantic smile on my face.

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Jul 25 2014

the unlikely orange: happy birthday, Quinton!

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our little baby, our round little man who has thinned out and become quite the little comedian, turns three years old today.  born just before midnight on the 25th of july, to the sweet sounds of grieg's "peer gynt," he was instantly loved and adored, not just by shannon and i, but by his older brothers, too.  it is stunning to think that it's been three years already, but the calendar swears its not lying about it, so we are making a batman cake and blowing out the candles and singing robustly to our young and hilarious little man.  we love you, Quinton, and are so proud of you!

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Jul 23 2014

the unlikely orange: chase’s big day

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see this guy?  his name is chase headley.  chase had a very interesting day yesterday.  let me tell you about it.

chase started the day in chicago as the third baseman for the san diego padres.  they were in the windy city for a series against the cubs.  at some point during the morning, however, it was announced that he had been traded to the new york yankees.  i can't even imagine what all must go through your head as a ball player who has just been told that you will now be playing with a whole different group of men, and you will now call a different city (on the other side of the country) "home" for the next 3 months.  but whatever goes through Chase's mind, it had to go through pretty quickly, because while i'm sure he wanted to talk to his wife and other family, he quickly had to make sure he was boarding a plane in chicago that was bound for new york city.  somehow, amidst saying goodbye to his teammates, and gathering his belongings, he did just that.

meanwhile, in the bronx, the yankees are playing there regularly scheduled game against the texas rangers.  at some point during the 2nd inning, Chase arrives at the stadium in time to put on his brand new uniform and walk out of the tunnel into the dugout, where he then began the (almost certainly) awkward process of saying hello to all of his new teammates ("hi, i'm Chase...and you are Derek Jeter!").

this kind of thing happens fairly regularly in baseball, so it isn't anything that hasn't been done before.  but Chase's big day wasn't over yet.  neither the yankees nor the rangers could score, so the game was 0-0 as it moved into the later innings.  at one point in the 8th inning, the yankees called upon their brand new third baseman to come into the game as a pinch hitter and try to get something going.  he struck out.

but the game remained scoreless.  it went into the 10th.  still scoreless.  then, in the 11th, Chase came up to the plate again.  and this time he.....grounded out to first base.

but, have no fear.  Chase's moment still hadn't arrived.  he came up to bat again, this time in the bottom of the 12th inning with the bases loaded and two outs.  surely this was his fairy tale moment, right?  nope.  he grounded out to second.

then, in the top of the 13th, with the score tied 0-0, the rangers hit a go-ahead home run.  after not being able to score the entire game, the yankees somehow found a way to tie it up in the bottom half of the inning, so the game continued into the 14th inning, tied 1-1.

the rangers couldn't score in the top of the 14th, and the yankees started the bottom half of the inning with an out, a double and a short single, which put runners on 1st and 3rd with one out for you-know-who, Chase Headley.  and this time, Chase's big day finally came to a full crescendo.

he singled to left field.  ballgame over.  yankees win.  THHHHHHEEEEE YANKEES WIN!

so, he started the day as a padre in chicago, and finished it as the celebrated hero of a yankees walk-off victory in the bronx.  what a day.

and i got to witness it all, into the wee hours of the morning, listening to the yankees radio broadcasters.  amazing.

and people say baseball is boring.  ha!

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Jul 21 2014

the unlikely orange: jackson plays “home on the range”

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Jackson provided the special music at church on sunday, playing the not-so-churchy "home on the range."  perhaps if you change the words to "where the deer and the antelope "pray," it would be a bit more churchy.  in any case, he did a great job. check it out!

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