Monday, April 30, 2007

The A Man Returneth

The A Man celebrated his 95th birthday yesterday! Family and friends enjoyed lox and bagels and a beautiful outdoors morning. In typcial fashion, A Man put it succinctly.

"People all over the world have birthdays. But it's nice when it's intentional like this."

Friday, April 27, 2007

I think that I mentioned last week having to find coverage for one of my security staff who was out sick. Calls to him this week went unreturned. Yesterday his daughter-in-law called to say that he died.

I don't know the details, or whether or not he was alone in his house. He tended to be fairly secluded.

Monday, April 23, 2007

Since everyone knows about the Secret Service, should we rename it?

Friday, April 20, 2007


Why does every television food chef act as if peeling garlic is a secret process?

"Don't waste your time trying to peel the clove," they say. "Here's how I do it."

Then, with a knowing smile, they proceed to instruct on how to hit the clove with the side of a knife blade so that the impact separates the clove from its peel.

Doesn't everyone in America know how to do this by now? Do we really need to be shown this every time that garlic is an ingredient in a recipe?

Wednesday, April 18, 2007

VA Tech

I'm curious as to what are your thoughts.
  • Is humankind innately evil, or born innately good?
  • Do we have free will?
  • If so, do we possess it at all times?
  • When a wolf gruesomely attacks a herd, it is considered normal. What do we mean by moral conscience?

Thursday, April 12, 2007

I have an idea of how to select our next president.
  • Give them all bingo cards with letters instead of numbers.
  • Start a game.
  • First one to spell his or her name wins!

Wednesday, April 11, 2007

I saw Lunesta (a sleep medication) advertise on the Late Late Show with Craig Ferguson.

It is either a conflict of interest or brilliant marketing.

Monday, April 09, 2007

I only attended one Easter service all of last week. It was the Palm Sunday service, which I don't particularly enjoy and so I sat out part of that one by intentionally arriving late.

Despite my avoidance--or rather because of it--I had a great Holy Week that was more reflective and thoughtful than many previous ones. This is because I was continually thinking about the various services I was not attending, what is their purpose, what I desire to gain from the experiences, and how I could focus my activity and internal growth during the time I wasn't at church.

Instead of having a brief worship experience at church and, when the service was over, feeling closure and going on about my life, I felt and still feel a keen ponderance about the significance of it all. I like that.

I am sitting now in my office at the shelter. It is on the second floor and has a westward facing view of the volcanoes and mesa. It is cloudy, drizzling rain...the perfect stay-at-home-with-a-good-book kind of day. Perfect for contemplation.

But I'm working. Which can make me feel resentful that I have to work and focus on running a shelter.

Ah, yes. Back to Easter. How to incorporate the meaning behind the reflection into daily, active life. How to trust that I need not grasp the good moments out of fear that they will not return. How to be fully present in the not-so-great moments. It is in this being outwardly active and inwardly silent that I believe I am at my best. And those moments are so rare.

Thursday, April 05, 2007

Conflict vs. Congruity

Those of you who know me well know that I love a good late-night discussion. Some parts of college life never leave you. It doesn't even have to be that late at night; I'll take an in-depth chat over "how's the weather?" any day.

Some friends started an interesting group that I'm adding to my "Other Links." Cool thing is, is that you don't have to be present to engage since they are podcasting their discussions and posting essays.

Go ahead. Add your comments. Get engaged!

Conflict vs. Congruity

Wednesday, April 04, 2007

Social Insecurity

My wonderful government social security statement arrived. It states that at age 62 I will receive $498 a month. That payment will be $878 if I work until age 70.

Of course the big disclaimer throughout the statement reads:

    "By 2040, the payroll taxes collected will be enough to pay only about 74 percent of scheduled benefits."
Hmmm...2040. That's when I'll be in my 70's so the $878 will be $650 per month. I wonder if housing costs will be down that low by then. Or maybe I'll retire in my 60's and just take the $369 per month.

Monday, April 02, 2007

Another language snippet:

There is a pretty rough-looking package store near where I housesat last week. But since it was nearby and I was desiring libation, I decided to risk getting past the guard at the door to join the line of patrons who were marked with every sort of tattoo. I was interested in trying the recently new vodka drink called "Hypnotiq."
I asked for a bottle of, "Hypnotique."
"You want Hypnotick?" the lady snarled behind the counter.
My cover was blown.

Other Stuff

Big news for Lobos fans: Steve Alford was just hired as head coach. Steve was a year ahead of me in high school and went to New Castle where his dad was his coach. He was Indiana's Mr. Basketball in 1983. He was also part of the best NCAA final game ever when IU beat Syracuse in 1987. I remember watching at a professor's home in Wheaton as the final score rolled in at the buzzer for a spectacular IU win. Steve will make a cool $975,000 per year.
I just finished writing and compiling a 60-page grant that I'm submitting to the Veterans Administration. It will bring in about $150,000 if approved. Maybe I should just appeal to the Hoosier spirit and send Mr. Alford a request.