Posted by Jim Gray


It seems we have a long history of creating distractions that draw attention away from art. What are your dancing rabbits?

Fading West

January 23, 2014 — Leave a comment



I grew up in California. I am a 5th generation Northern Californian. I lived in CA until 2006. It’s part of my history.

I bought “Fading West” off iTunes last week. After a week of listening and letting it sink in it really resonates with the California part of me. The music on this album reminds me of my childhood, high school, and college years in California. I am brought back to a time when living in CA was fun and you didn’t have the concerns of adulthood like traffic, work, and the things that made living there harder as an adult.

It seems that faith was fresh and simple in those memories as well. For me this album is a reminder that we let life get complicated sometimes. Our culture can be overwhelmingly negative.

Thanks for helping bring me back to the good stuff, Switchfoot.

These are not the droids you are looking for... #vscocam #starwars

In 1989 I sat in a Baskin Robbins with my friend Ron and his brother after youth group. Apparently, I was bragging about how I ran cross-country in junior college and how I was riding my mountain bike a lot.

Ron challenged me that night…classic Ron moment, really.

“I think you are a lot of talk, Jim.”

As I sit here in my office, 25 years later, and ponder that moment,  Ron wasn’t attacking me or putting me down. He saw what I know to be true of all of us at one point or another…the pride of life. I’m altogether familiar with this as a husband, father, friend, son and brother.

I’ve started challenging myself again…

…you’re a lot of talk when it comes to; parenting, marriage, work, family, friends, etc.

I once heard a radio station commercial who’s tagline was:

“a little less talk, a lot more rock.”

That’s where I’m at these days. I want to count for something in the areas of my life that matter as a father, husband, employee, Christian, etc.




The past two weeks have been stressful. Now that I’m commuting to an office 3-4 days a week I am reminded of how much I appreciate being able to work from home. Although, I am thankful for the shortest commute of my adult life with just 20-25 minutes door to door.

On Monday afternoon I was listening to the radio and heard “Jesus is the reason for the season.” And while this might sound a little weird, I believe that the birth of Jesus was a stressful time for his earthly parents, Joseph and Mary. I cannot imagine traveling with a pregnant wife on unpaved roads with no place to give birth. When our first son was born, I was more concerned as to whether or not we would have a private room.

And then you have some lonely shepherds who are having a quiet night working the graveyard shift outside of Bethlehem. They get freaked out by some unsuspecting guests and this leads to Joseph and Mary receiving some unexpected guests.

As I’m typing this, I’m smiling because I realize that my stress is really just day-to-day stuff. And my thought this morning is that the only way to really get into the “Christmas spirit” is to choose to do so.  So, I’m going to keep blasting Christmas music in my car, watching cheesy movies with the family, attending Christmas gatherings and more.



In 1994 I started working weekends as “Post 3” the communications officer for security at the Universal Movie Lot in North Hollywood, CA. This was in Building 31, behind the Corner Store and across from the Hitchcock Theatre and Commissary. I worked on the lot from 1993-97. I started off as a “set-watch” or “production” guard on t.v. shows and movies then moved into working at guard gates and eventually became a supervisor for most of my time there. I spent a lot of time out in the field in a golf cart or in a car checking on security guards posted at guard-shacks, buildings, etc. As supervisors we also responded to emergencies, etc. I learned a lot in four years about how to manage people and relationships.