Friday, October 21, 2005


There's a new guy in my community group that I've been getting to know and I learned a pretty amazing thing about him. We were carving pumpkins at our social activity night and the boys ended up talking about video games (a topic that usually comes up in our conversations). I didn't believe it at first, but the new guy in our group, Minh, created the most popular PC online game of all time, the Half-Life mod Counter-Strike. I was pretty shocked to meet the legend. I have a little background on him.

Minh, also known by his online nickname Gooseman, first picked up Quake in 1996 and began playing with the SDK (Software Development Kit) for it. With it he created his first couple of mods, called Navy SEALs and Action Quake 2. While in the middle of his fourth year at SFU, Minh came up with the idea for Counter-Strike and became friends with AQ2's webmaster Jess Cliffe.

Jess and Minh, known as the "Counter-Strike Team", began work on Counter-Strike while Minh was studying at SFU. Minh did all the modeling, skinning, animating, and coding while Jess did public relations and the website. Minh spent about 20 hours a week making the mod, putting his studies secondary, and released the first beta in June 1999.

Minh later graduated with a degree in Computer Science. Both he and Jess joined Valve Software in 2000 and continued to work there with the release of Half-Life 2 and the new Counter-Strike: Source last year. In 2003, GameSpy ranked Minh as the most important reason Half-Life has been so popular five years after it was released.

Minh, has since left Valve looking for new opportunities in Vancouver. I believe he's searching for something deeper too in his life which is how he ended up coming to my church. He's asked some great questions about Jesus and Jesus' death on the cross in our bible studies. I am greatly encouraged by his honesty and desire to seek God.


Thursday, October 13, 2005

The Power of a Woman

My cousin sent this to me. It's hilarious and so true.


Sunday, October 09, 2005

Old School Crew

Tonight, I got back from an old school gathering with friends I haven't seen from months to 2-3 years. It was a pretty surreal experience, like I was back in time or something. We haven't been together as one whole crew since my last year in university in 2003. It's amazing to see how many of us have changed in the last few years. Some have gotten married, a couple are almost done at SFU, and a few have obtained good jobs. We reminisced about the past, brought up some good stories, and laughed hard. We chatted for hours, eating chips, rice krispy squares, and drinking lots of tang.

I'm pretty blessed and amazed with the friendships I have acquired over the years especially from being involved with Campus Crusade. I couldn't find a group that had quite the warmth and closeness of it. Although, after much searching I think I've found a new home at New Joy. They are a great bunch. Having a close group of friends is pretty important in life. You learn a lot about yourself, how to adapt, be vulnerable, reveal yourself, and laugh a lot; be open minded, think, analyze, and form ideas and opinions to improve one another.

I remember when I first met my friend, Mindy, at a Christian conference in 1998, we met at La Senza. We were going to pick up some pj's downtown with our mutual friend Joyce, and I didn't realize we were heading to La Senza. The doorman let us into the store and I tried to keep a straight face. Mindy smiled at me, stood beside me, and folded her arms like mine. She said you must feel a little odd eh? I was like yeah, it's a little weird to meet you at a store like this. We just laughed. I've been through a lot with this girl and she became quite a sister to me. Today, she's married to a great man, Tom, whom I've come to know and grow closer with as well. They both live in Saskabush now (Had to say it Mindy, it's just asking for it).

Last summer, some of us went camping at Manning Park. It's been kind of an annual thing. Here's a fun picture below of us on top of some mountain near Manning.

(Left to Right) Jon, Stefanie, Mindy, Sarah, Tom