Saturday, December 29, 2007

Hey! I Know That Guy!!

So...apparently there is a chance that an asteroid will hit Mars sometime at the end of next month. Up until a few days ago, there was a 1 in 75 chance that this might happen. That probability changed to 1 in 25 a few days ago thanks to research done by my brother-in-law, Dr. Andy Puckett, who has a PhD in Astronomy and is on staff at the University of Alaska in Anchorage. This research got him mentioned in a NASA press release and on NPR's Science Friday. He was also mentioned in an Associated Press story where they mistakenly referred to him as a PhD student. For the full story, visit the Puckett family blog here.

Here is Andy's explanation of the photo above:
SDSS image of 2007 WD5. This "precovery" image extended the observed arc from 29 to 41 days, and increased the probability of impact with Mars from 1-in-75 to 1-in-25. That's 4%! (The most likely result will still be a near-miss, but we should know more in early January.)

Way to go Andy!

Thursday, December 27, 2007

Shannon's Top Twelve of 2007

Hey Everyone!

Because of the holidays, Oddwalk is not blogging as much as we usually do. Instead of an entirely new blog post, I've decided to give you my top 12 blog posts of the year. It isn't so much a collective top 12 as it is a top post for each month. Feel free to disagree and let us know about it! Here you go:

June - The Vatican Drives It's Point Home

July - Madeleine Tries To Understand The Seventies

August - Oddwalk's Big Announcement

September - Orin Scandalizes An Entire Audience

October - Orin Finds Out What Happens When A Ford Escort Reaches 200,000 Miles

November - An Alabama Parish Feels the Keytar Mystique

December - A Fall Filled With Large Animals

There are a lot of other great posts that I could have mentioned. These are just a few of my favorites. Thanks to all of those who check in with us regularly!


Monday, December 24, 2007

Today is born our Savior, Christ the Lord!

Here's hoping your Christmas holiday is filled with family and peace. Please keep our families in your prayers as we keep all of you in ours.

Merry Christmas from the Oddwalk Family!

Thursday, December 20, 2007


Saw this over at Gene's blog (   Funny Stuff!

Wednesday, December 19, 2007

Thanks to for bringing this website to our attention -- build your vocabulary and earn rice for the United Nations World Food Program!  All for free!

Happy 80th Birthday, Orin's Mom

Orin's mom Eva (pictured, she's the one on the right) turns 80 years old today!  Yay, mom!

To send her birthday greetings, drop a line to

Tuesday, December 18, 2007

You'd Better Watch Out

Click here to watch Apple's Christmastime "I'm a Mac and I'm a PC" ad.  Or don't.  Just don't say we didn't warn you when you get the words wrong at your next holiday sing-a-long party.

Monday, December 17, 2007

Tree Trimming Party 2007

Erin and Orin held their annual Tree Trimming Party on Saturday, despite the snowstorm that came through St. Louis.  (Note to any actual Minnesotans reading this - it was 7 inches of snow.  Yes, I know, but down here that qualifies as a snowstorm.)

The tree was successfully trimmed, and instead of the usual gingerbread house, a gingerbread church was decorated this year, steeple and all.

The last time we tried to create a gingerbread church, a couple years ago, the gingerbread had not baked long enough and began to bend and collapse under the weight of the steeple and decorations.  This year: so far so good.  If we can keep the dogs away from it, so much the better.

Saturday, December 15, 2007

Christmas and CD Release Concert

Mark your calendars for Saturday, January 5th. On that night, Oddwalk will perform a concert at the National Shrine of Our Lady of the Snows in Belleville to celebrate the holidays and the release of "Walk Away Different" , our new CD with GIA Publications. The show will be held in the Shrine's Visitors Center and will feature a full band.

This is a great opportunity to gather everyone you know and head out for a night of music and fun. Our show promises to feature lots of audience participation, a bunch Oddwalk favorites (we have a bunch?), and a few surprises. The concert will begin at 7pm and will run until around 8:30pm.

The Visitors Center also features a gift shop and a restaurant so you can plan to come and make a night of it.

We hope you can make it. It should be a great night!

Friday, December 14, 2007

Front Page News

Hey!  Oddwalk's New CD "Walk Away Different" has made the front page of the GIA Publications website!  (You may have to click the"Sacred Music" to get there, then look under "Featured Products".)  That's right, we're now officially awesome.

Did you know that "Walk Away Different" is the perfect Christmas present for every single person you know, and that it also makes a nice stocking stuffer?  It's true!  And we also have lots of other crap merchandise - shirts, magnets, buttons - that will make everyone's hearts glow with an Oddwalkian spirit of Christmas.  Order now to ensure delivery by Groundhogs Day!  No, wait - by, um... by Christmas!  Yeah, that's it.

Wednesday, December 12, 2007

Has someone been posting weird things that we don't know about?

We were a bit concerned when we noticed someone had found our blog merely by googling this phrase:

"natal celebration devoid of colour, rather albino, as a hallucinatory phenomenon for me"

until we realized they were looking for and had found the Christmas Music Quiz we posted a couple years ago. Phew.

With One Final Click...

...of the "submit" button, Orin has finished his last class at Aquinas Institute of Theology. Yay! While happy and relieved, there is still the matter (in the Spring) of the major paper and the written and oral exit exams... But still! Classroom lectures, note-taking, etc. — things of the past!

When I started school, I posted my first small assignment as it tells a story I often tell when out Oddwalking. I won't bother posting this last assignment, a take-home Church History final exam, unless anyone really wants to know what I think about the Christological divide between Cyril and Nestorius, the far-reaching effects of the Fourth Lateran Council, or whether or not Christianity can be described as a European religion.

Instead, let me share this parting thought with you, though we've already noted it's not entirely true:

"No more pencils! No more books!
No more teacher's dirty looks!"

Pictured is Fr. Dominic Holtz, OP, my Church History professor and academic adviser. He's nicer and funnier than this picture would lead you to believe. Picture swiped from

Tuesday, December 11, 2007

The Great Ice Storm of '07

As many of you know, the midwest was hit hard by an ice storm this weekend. Many people are without power and therefore (in most cases), without heat as well. We know a good number of people in and around Fulton, including Erin and I, who are having to bounce from house to house in order to stay warm, get a shower, and have a comfortable place to eat and relax. Some people, however, don't have a home to begin with and are just looking for a place to get in out of the cold. We want to make sure we keep all of these folks in our prayers.

For those faithful Oddblog watchers who don't happen to live in the midwest, I snapped a few pictures of trees with my phone to give you a sense of the destruction caused by the ice storm. This is representative of the scene around much of this part of Missouri:

This is a small tree just outside the St. Peter parish office and church where I work:

Here is another tree on Missouri's Capital grounds which is across from St. Peter Church:

Here is the same tree from a different angle. Notice the branches lying flat on the ground. There are thousands of trees just like this one all over mid-Missouri:

Many of the trees were not damaged and were made beautiful with an ice covering. This tree is from Dan and Bobbie Ramsay's (Erin's parents) back yard in Holts Summit, MO:

Mostly ice and very little snow means it's too dangerous to go outside. These conditions can make a tree year-old do this:

Some of us were fortunate enough to not be too strongly affected by these storms. If you can count yourself in that group, please consider making a donation to your local shelter or food bank. This can include money, clothing, blankets, coats, food, etc.


Oddwalk and Large Animal Statuary

A week ago, Oddwalk visited the Diocese of Norwich, CT for a couple evenings of Advent fun and prayer. During free time one day, we visited an OMI retreat house in Willimantic and Oddwalk friend Fr. Chava Gonzales. As we were leaving the site, our host, Janet, suggested we should visit the frog bridge while we were close.

This sounded like something Oddwalk should do.

The story (one of may, I'm told) is that the frogs saved the town one night during the American Revolution. British soldiers were advancing on the town under cover of darkness. The frogs, however, were awakened by them, and made so much noise that the townspeople were alerted, and rose to defend themselves.

The frogs are sitting on giant spools, as thread-making was once the city's main industry.

Oddwalk has a history with encountering giant animals on trips. Recall a few months ago when we met a giant pheasant just outside of Huron, SD?

Here's a reminder:

And here's last week (Notice any similarities?):

Sunday, December 9, 2007

Nun Too Good

If this would have happened when I was in Catholic school, my head would have exploded:
Nun reads list of curse words to kids
The Associated Press

GROSSE POINTE PARK, Mich. --Sister Kathy Avery won't put up with swearing on the playground at her school, and she's not above repeating the offending language to make sure everyone understands which words she won't tolerate.
The principal of St. Clare of Montefalco Catholic School had students stay after a Mass last month and informed the fifth- through eighth-graders that she has a zero-tolerance policy for cursing.
Just in case anyone wasn't sure what she was talking about, Avery read off a list of the very words and phrases that she was banning.
"It got a little quiet in church" during her talk, she told the Detroit Free Press.
Some parents were shocked, but others applauded, the newspaper said.
"In a way you would think a nun would shy away from something like that, but she's very open with the children, very clear in her messages," said Margaret Roache, chairperson of the school commission.
Roache's sixth-grade son was there when Avery read the list of banned words.
"When I asked him to give me a sample of it, he said 'Oh, no, I can't say it!'" Roache said. "I thought it was great."
A representative of the Archdiocese of Detroit declined to comment Sunday.
Cuss words aren't the only things that set Avery off. She's also banned the words "stupid" and "boring."

Teenagers In My Car's been a while since we've posted anything. Sorry about that. We'll post something new very soon.

Until then, and in honor of the winter storm that visited us over the weekend, please enjoy a performance of "Teenagers In My Car", recorded in January at Austin Diocesan Youth Conference in Waco, TX.

Monday, December 3, 2007

When Nuns Go Crazy

Or at least do Matilda the Gorilla with Oddwalk on stage in Huron, South Dakota:

For the full story (a whole line of which is devoted to Oddwalk!), clicky here.  (You have to click on the "continued..." link at the bottom to get to the "Oddwalk was there too" line about us...)

Thursday, November 29, 2007

Not sure what to make of this

Really? A Bratz Advent Calendar?  Really??

I'm not even sure I want to know what's behind the little doors.


Tuesday, November 27, 2007

New Marian Shrine?

At Orin's house?

Today, Orin got a catalog that had somehow merged his home and work addresses. The result? A new shrine, the "National Shrine of Our Lady of XXXX Shaw Boulevard."

If anyone knows where exactly in the house this Shrine is (though I personally have a few ideas), please let us know.


Sunday, November 25, 2007


Congratulations to the Missouri Tigers for their win over arch-rival Kansas. I know that most of Oddwalk Nation probably doesn't care about this. It's even possible that Orin doesn't care about this. No matter. It's pretty darn cool:

Next up...the Oklahoma Sooners...GO MIZZOU!

Thursday, November 22, 2007

Happy Thanksgiving

Remember to say a prayer of thanks to God today, and recall that our truest blessings dwell not in our material possessions but in our faith, our lives, and our God.

That said, here's probably more what you were expecting to see here today:
Happy Thanksgiving!  Also, Happy St. Cecilia Day - She's patron of music and musicians, you know!

Tuesday, November 20, 2007

Keytar Paradise - Update!

Well!  Mari, who created the keytar rap for us at NCYC forwarded to us the lyrics!  Watch the video again, and this time, sing along!  (Unfortunately, the video starts about half-way through...)

The Keytar Gangsta Rap
(to Gangsta's Paradise)

As I walk Port Dis 'covry
And I look at the booths
I find Oddwalk Ministries
And realize they're very smooth

They play the keytar
And even sing
You know you love keytar
It's the coolest thing!!

Been spendin' most our lives
Livin' in a keytar paradise
It's all fun and worship time
Livin' in a keytar paradise

Enjoy!! and God bless!!!

Havre Nice Day! (As Shannon might title this post)

Oddwalk had a splendid time in Montana this past weekend. We flew into Billings on Friday evening, and drove a couple hours partway to the event location (Montana is big, it's true!), staying overnight at the Yogo Inn in Lewistown.

To plug in his cell phone overnight, Shannon had to climb on the desk and reach enarly up to the ceiling. Well, he didn't really have to, but he really wanted to.

The next day, we drove another stretch to Great Falls to meet our host's family and see some Montana-esque sights, including the world's shortest river - really. That's most of it pictured below.

We also saw an Albino Trout at the hatchery, and thought "Albino Trout" might be a good name for a rock band.

We also stopped at the Lewis and Clark Interpretive Center. There we saw a nicely done exhibit, which included this life-sized model of the expedition pulling a canoe up a hill as they had to portage 19 miles around the Great Falls on the Missouri River.

The event itself, in Havre, MT went quite well, but we forgot completely to take any pictures of it. Sorry. The youth were energetic, the food was great, and a good time, as they say, was had by all. Thanks again to Anthony Allen and all the great people of Great Falls/Billings for a wonderful trip.

Here's a nice shot though of Sunrise Monday morning from the plane:

Friday, November 16, 2007

Rock the Rock

Leaving the Comedy Club at NCYC a week ago, a young person threw a shirt at Shannon.  Orin was racing ahead and Shannon was in a hurry too as we had another concert appearance to get to right away.

Anyway, when we examined the shirt later, we discovered it had a picture of St. Peter on the front posing with a keytar!  Saturday was Keytar Appreciation Day after all!  The back has the LifeTeen logo and the parish of St. Peter's in Hoover Alabama printed on it.

The shirt is most awesome.

Thanks to whoever threw this shirt at us in celebration of Keytar Appreciation Day, especially all the young folks in Hoover, AL!


Oddwalk sent a thank you message to the folks in St. Peters and heard back from their Youth Minister almost immediately.  Her message, like the shirt, is also most awseome!

Orin -

glad you are enjoying the shirt...the teens were really excited when they saw the keytar come out b/c we're probably the only youth group in the world that has a shirt featuring one! our youth group motto is "rock the rock"...and, from that idea we developed the idea that st. peter is The Rock and that he ROCKS! so, he ended up with a keytar b/c he holds the "keys" to heaven and the keys that rock heaven is obviously a keytar!

i'll pass on the message about your blog...the teens will be THRILLED!! thanks for all you do...keep it up!


Rebecca S. Rosko
LifeTeen Youth Minister
St. Peter the Apostle Catholic Church

Wednesday, November 14, 2007

pOddcast - "For All Time"

New today on the pOddcast: a sample from the end of "For All Time" as recorded on Oddwalk's new CD with GIA, Walk Away Different.

As always, you can find the pOddcast in the sidebar, on the main site, or directly on iTunes.  Enjoy this sample, and if you wish to order a copy of the CD for your very own, click here!

Tuesday, November 13, 2007

More NCYC 2007 Pics

More pictures from Columbus, OH - Thanks to Erin C and family!

The display for Oddwalk's new CD at the GIA booth

Orin tries to convince folks that keytars are cool.

The Oddwalk booth set up for a festive Keytar Appreciation Day

Noah forgot his spandex, but still rocked the keytar

The proud winner of the air keytar (also pictured: a shirt made just for the day)

Monday, November 12, 2007

Memories of NCYC 2007

Just before leaving, Orin got to visit his Ford Escort one last time and reclaim the license plates.

Orin's new car achieved 1,000 miles just before arriving in Columbus, OH.

The proud buyer of Walk Away Different CD #1! Oddwalk got to see the CD in person for the first time at NCYC.

GIA exec Michael Cymbala at the GIA booth just across from Oddwalk's. We have another picture we promised we wouldn't publish. Let's just say Michael was exploring his vocation options. Also, note the large Oddwalk CD hanging in the back.

Another GIA friend, Andrew at the booth.

Several participants posed for some pictures with the Oddwalk Keytar!

Best hairstyles of the conference!

Oddwalk friend Will from Omaha helps celebrate Keytar Appreciation Day

Another young lady even wrote us a rap for Keytar Appreciation Day, we think titled "Keytar Paradise" - Thanks!

If we get anymore pictures, video, etc. from NCYC 2007 and Keytar Appreciation Day, we'll be sure to let you all know! Check back here!

Saturday, November 10, 2007

Keytar Appreciation Day 2007!!

Well, it's Keytar Appreciation Day 2007 - the first one ever! Oddwalk has been gearing up for it by giving away lots of stickers and fliers, and signing people up to win an inflatable keytar at our booth. Today, we have two big performances at NCYC, both featuring one of our Oddwalk keytars.

What are your doing to celebrate (we're looking at you, Marianne) - post it in the comments below! Happy Keytar Appreciation Day everyone!

PS - One way to celebrate would be to visit our new page,!

Wednesday, November 7, 2007

Oddwalk at NCYC

The Oddwalk caravan successfully arrived at NCYC in Columbus, OH earlier tonight. It was a long day - Orin got a chance to say goodbye to his beloved Ford Escort and watched his new Mazda 3 clear 1,000 miles (pictures of both to follow) among other things.

We'll have more updates as the days go by, but for now, we're tired, so we'll sign off. Stay tuned for more pictures, maybe some video, and all the excitement of NCYC 2007, especially Saturday, Keytar Appreciation Day!

Sunday, November 4, 2007

Orin's New Car!

A Mazda 3 hatchback!