nick alexanderYou may have heard of Nick Alexander, he of the comedy album "A Time to Laugh" (of "Should I Stand or Should I Kneel" fame) and "I Wanna Be Debated" (which has the perennial favorite "This Time of Forty Days").

He's a speaker, songwriter, and guitarist who specializes in praise songs, and a comedian in the vein of Weird Al.

Before you think I've forgotten that we're doing Catholic Techie interviews here, let me tell you this: Nick's now podcasting.

His show, Prayer Meeting Podcast, is an attempt to "recreate an ecumenical, charismatic prayer session of several decades ago." He uses classic hymns, praise songs, and original compositions, along with a reflection of his own, in order to, he hopes, "add a positive devotion to [the listener's] harried schedule."

(Nick's also on Twitter as @NickAlexCath, in case you're interested.)

So without further blathering, here's my Catholic Techie interview with Nick!

Tell us about yourself in five words or less.

Joyous, orthodox, reflective, musical and insane.

Of your pursuits, what's your favorite?

This may surprise some, but it's being able to lead and craft worship songs.  When people laugh at my parodies, it's a great high, and I'm continually surprised when that happens; but I've a longer-held focus on worship, and helping others pray better in song.

When you think of the New Evangelization from your approach as a "Catholic Techie," what excites you? What makes you want to continue?

Sorry to sound clichéd, but I've been blessed; I know where I came from, and how I was before the Presence of God became a reality in my life.  I don't ever want to take that for granted.  What's crazy-inspiring is that God doesn't stop working in us, even when we think we hit a ceiling.  And we can only keep on keeping on, anticipating the next crazy stage in this wild rollercoaster ride.

What's the most rewarding aspect of your work?

Money. Lots of it.  Tax-free.  Woo-HOO!!

Just kidding.  (But oh how I wish it were true...)

In reality, I have no insight as to how others react to what I do.  Some people love it, and there are a few that loathe it.  Some people are changed by it, but for all I know, it might be temporal.  There is simply no way for me to gauge this, and maybe it's better that way.

The only lasting aspect I have is how *I* am changed, whenever I pursue something that I suspect is a God-ordained open door. The planets align, the circumstances avail themselves naturally, and the Twinkie company shuts its doors the very moment you start the new diet.  As you strive to follow God's will--& nobody does so perfectly, but He grades on a curve--God smiles.  To look back at all the other instances where I tried to do so, then I see how I've changed.  Even if I get it wrong, I change, and I do so in a positive way.

In your spare time, what are we likely to find you doing? Do you have a gadget in hand or do you go native and screenless?

I'm a bona fide movie buff--classics and contemporary.  When these fail me, some of the (quality) television shows are fantastic too. I am continually surprised at the art form and how wonderful it can be when used to provoke thought and wonder (and really cool explosions).

And, yes, my iPod Touch is continually in my hands. I actually made it a Skype-based iPhone--used a Lifehacker trick to embed the earphones into the case so that it has an ear-piece and a mouthpiece.  And I'm always checking my email. 

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Copyright 2012 Sarah Reinhard