Monthly Archives: December 2013

……omg! I’ve turned into my dad

grumpy old man

 

In reality, turning into my Dad’s an OK thing. He was a great guy. Funny, kind, generous, loyal, he was all of these. Also, like Mark Twain before me, the older I get the smarter he seems to grow in my memory. That said, he did have a fairly substantial list of pet peaves. To my knowledge he never listed them in writing, but he carried them with him out into public and often put them out there for those close to him to observe, rarely, for all the world to see. I find that, now in my dotage, I too am accumulating quite a list, but choose to write them here in the hope that it may diminish my need to publicly display them. Who knows, by sharing them here it may save me a good a$$-whoopin in the Kroger parking lot someday,

In my initial post in this blog, I shared with you, gentle reader, my acknowledgment that to a degree I have become a grouchy old man. Sometimes things annoy me that once I wouldn’t have even noticed. What follows is a list of some of those. Not surprisingly, many of these “annoyances” are imposed upon me by my friends on Facebook. Annoyances originate elsewhere as well. They come from everywhere, some days. These annoyances here are special ones though. They appear in no particular order, just as they occur to me. My naming them are not meant to provoke anyone who might read this, but in part at least, I hope by naming them, perhaps to strip them of their annoying power. It’s also important for me to make clear, that just because something might annoy me, the source of the annoyance may have less to do with whether or not I agree (often I do) with something or not. More often, it has only to do with the frequency of my exposure to it. So, I readily admit most of this grumble is on me. Let’s get started, shall we? Here we go:

 

  1. “Selfies” (other than my own)
  2. Journalists and broadcasters who end sentences with prepositions.
  3. People from north of the Ohio River who insist on driving 65mph in the passing lane of my interstates.
  4. People from south of the Ohio River who insist on driving 65mph in the passing lane of my interstates. (Only a little less so than those from north of the Ohio)
  5. Semi tractors and trailers that drive on my interstates.
  6. Conservative friends who for political motives constantly put up pictures of guns on Facebook.
  7. Facebook petitions. All of them. OMG what a waste of time. Talk about your spittin’ into the wind. I will never participate.
  8. OMG. Yeah I know I just did it. But I annoyed myself when I did it.
  9. The manner in which my liberal friends say such hateful things about Sarah Palin. I mean c’mon people is she really even relevant anymore? Leave her alone. She’s very pretty
  10. Endless protestant praise for Pope Francis. Do non-catholics really know? Do you really care?
  11. That cardboard/aluminum coated seal that you have to get a knife to peal away inside every mustard, ketchup, soy sauce, coffee creamer container.
  12. The thin plastic seal that you have to cut away from fresh salsa
  13. Any “Easy Open” seal. They’re never easily opened. Usually I end up annihilating them and they wont reseal.
  14. The hushed tones of NPR radio hosts.
  15. Garrison Keillor
  16. Joel Osteen
  17. Game day car team flag fliers
  18. The obligatory Brit employed by every cable news outlet. (why do that hire that guy? Aussies are a little better. They somehow seem more “down to earth.”)
  19. The phrase: Climate Change
  20. The existence of NASCAR
  21. The Winter Olympics
  22. Political ads
  23. Neck Tattoos
  24. Caps worn backwards
  25. flip flops
  26. Anti-tobacco crusaders
  27. Anti-trans fat crusaders
  28. Anti-aspertame crusaders
  29. Anti-GMO crusaders
  30. Anti-gun crusaders
  31. Anti-gay marriage crusaders
  32. Pro-choice crusaders
  33. Pro-life crusaders
  34. Pro-football crusaders…wait…what?
  35. The mayor of NYC
  36. Crusaders of any ilk.
  37. Almost every bumper sticker ever, but especially bumper stickers of a political nature. You can’t imagine how little I care about how, or for whom, you’re going to vote.
  38. Xns who get exorcised at the use of “Xmas.” (If you get what Xns is, you’re probably not one of the Xns that get on my nerves.)
  39. Facebook posts and Twitter tweets exhorting a team, any team, to victory. The team doesn’t care, I don’t care. No one cares. You’re not on the team, so please.
  40. The ghosts in my backyard that cause my dogs to bark and bark and bark and bark and bark and bark and bark……SHUT UP!!
  41. Uploaded pictures of beers and cocktails. Great! You’re getting hammered. I can’t play that game anymore.
  42. Condescending Athiests who think that their non-belief is intellectually superior. For the most part my Athiest/Secular Humanist friends are nicer than average. They tend to be more ethical and decent and laissez faire than a bunch of my xn friends, but for the life of me I wonder where they think their goodness comes from.
  43. Given #2, how difficult it is to always try avoiding the prepositionally ending sentence. See the end of #43, It’s not always easy.
  44. Catching myself in a contradiction.

 

Oh well, that’s all for right now. I’ve sufficiently vented my spleen. No doubt, you’ve found yourself in this somewhere. It doesn’t mean you annoy me. Heck, I love you, and would probably enjoy being friends with the folks that do these things. Certainly, I have annoyed many and maybe even you, but I hope you will extend me the grace and love so often required of me…..And….I also hope you got a smile or two from this. I know I can’t be alone on most of this.

 

 

 

 

 

…..silent joe

nativity-scene-sonja-anderson

Gonna go theological on this post. So if that kind of thing doesn’t interest you…….

 

There are two curious, and perhaps, unique to me, things, which I ponder from time to time. The first of these revolves around the thought process of dogs. Clearly they are sentient beings. As animals ago, they’re among the smartest. They seem to clearly posses the capacity for emotion, but they have no language. So, I muse, how does a dog ( or any other animal for that matter) think or conceptualize? I haven’t researched it at all. There’s probably something on the interwebs about it, but I haven’t looked. I’m not sure I really want to know in all honesty, ’cause I like thinking about it. If there is a real, bona fide, reliable, scientific answer to my musing it would cease to be a musing, and I likes my musings. So exactly how are dogs’ thoughts formed without knowing any words? Curious minds want to know. About the same time I began to think of how dogs might think, without words that is, I also acquired another life-long puzzlement.

 

While still in the midst of my undergrad studies, I had the good pleasure of hearing the King Singers. The King Singers were/are a vocal quartet who are alumni of the King’s College Choir in Cambridge, England. To be honest, I don’t remember much of the concert beyond one song. This song has …hmmm looking for the right phrase……lingered hauntingly in my psyche. To be truthful, I don’t know if the song was part of the concert I attended, but it was on the album I bought in the hallway afterward. (Yes, I said album – a big twelve inch plastic disc that required a thing called a turntable with an arm and a needle) I wish I could tell you the name of the song, but I can’t. I lost the album long ago. I’m not sure how or when, and I can’t even tell you the title of the song. I can’t tell you with any great certainty whether this song was of the medieval period or the renaissance. It was, however, one of those. You might be thinking, “Well… he went to a concert and heard a song (or maybe not, maybe it was on the record he bought), he’s not exactly sure the genre, can’t remember the title and valued it so much that he lost the record anyway. And what on earth does that have to do with how dogs think?” It’s germane because this elusive song was titled something like: Joseph, Wunder Howe Thate My Bey. Now I’ll tell you up front, that’s probably wrong as all get out, but it was a Middle-English title, that when you figured out what was being sung about, would translate something like: “Joseph, wonder how that may be.” The lyrics of this song, which weren’t drawn from scripture, were simply doing with Joseph’s thought process, the same sort of thing I sometimes do with dogs. They lyrics were trying to tell us what Joseph was thinking. Unlike dogs, he had words supplied to him by the lyricist.

 

So the song was about the Angel and Joseph hashing this thing out. This thing Joseph is thinking through is the real bad 1st century news that his girl friend, Mary (who he was going to marry) had gotten struck pregnant. So the title is sort of the Old/Middle English version of Joseph asking. “Whoa. How’d that happen?” And then there were 14 or 15 verses of Joe and the Angel engaging in a lengthy Q & A session. The lasting thing I have carried with me from that song wasn’t any extra-biblical answer, or even the memory of a beautiful tune, but it did leave me with a second life long musing which is this: Why does the New Testament give us so little on Joseph? I got to know Joseph way better in that song than I ever did in the Bible.

 

In the New Testament, we hear tons about Jesus’ Mom, Mary. We know she rode a donkey to Bethlehem. We know she was a virgin, that an Angel visited her, that she sang a real cool song after he left, that she had a Cousin Elizabeth. We know she and two other Mary’s were there when Jesus died. We know Jesus was very concerned, at least in John’s telling of things, that she be taken care of. We know she was the one who goaded Jesus into changing water to wine. We know loads about Mary. But Joseph…well…not so much.

 

All of us raised up in the church know who Joseph was. He was Jesus’ Dad. Well sort of anyway. Beyond that we don’t know too much. We don’t know what he looked like. We don’t know how old he was when he and Mary tied the knot. For that matter, we don’t really know that they ever did. We don’t know if he was kind, or funny, or successful. We don’t know when he died. We don’t know if he knew anything about Jesus beyond the 12 year old stay behind at the temple, talking with the rabbis thing. Almost nothing. We do know, Matthew tells us, that he had a dream where he was told to go ahead and marry Mary. (the subject of that song) We know he had another dream telling him that he, Mary and Baby Jesus better high tail it to Egypt for a while, and we know he was carpenter. That’s what we know, or at least that’s about all I know about him.

 

Compared to Mary, James, John, Peter, Paul, Mary Magdalene, heck even Zaccheus (he was a wee little man,) it’s like…well…it’s like the father OF OUR LORD (sorta) just has a bit part. Think about it. Mark doesn’t mention Joseph at all. AT ALL. John really doesn’t either. Luke just tells us he was “betrothed” to Mary. Only Matthew gives him any real action part at all, with next to no dialogue. It’s no wonder that my dominant image of Joseph is him standing silently by the manger, leaning on a big stick.

 

As a man and a Dad myself, this seems sort of lousy treatment. Joseph doesn’t get to do much of anything. He sort of just stands there and watches it (how much and exactly what, we dont know) happen. Perhaps, though, it is all this which is unsaid about him, which is so intriguing to me, and why I feel so drawn to him.

 

(I’m about to go all existential on ya)

 

Again, as a man and a Dad, standing here, silently for the most part, seems to be the role to which I find myself relegated. First the “man” part. As a middle age, white, anglo, Jesus – loving, southerner, well let me tell ya what that’s like. Feminists (which I once thought I was since I believe in equality under the law, equal pay for equal work, equal access, etc.) see me as oppressor, and tell me that daily, through countless blogs, newscasts, movies and nearly every other sort of popular media. Non-whites (who don’t know me) see me the same way, tell me that nearly as often, and by the same means as do the feminists. The Academy, with their gender neutral pronoun obsession tacitly call out, “ditto for us.” And the church, and its re-writing Hark the Herald Angels Sing to having said angels sing, “born to raise the folk of earth,” instead of, “born to raise the sons of earth, well ….you get it….maybe.

 

And, if not an oppressor, well, I’m the stupid one. The big clumsy oaf or awkward geek. Watch any network TV sitcom you’ll see me. I’m the one that can’t figure out how to use the toaster, or I scratch myself inappropriately, I only eat bacon. Heck, they’re surprised I can find my way home every day. For what it’s worth, I do love bacon, and have my moments of inappropriate scratching, but I do know how to act when the curtain goes up. But now, roll southerner in on top of all that. Admittedly, most of this comes from reality TV, who crucify every demographic I think, but for the record: I am clean shaven. I do not live in a swamp. I do not live in a trailer. I do not drive a truck. I go on one or two fishing trips a year. I don’t drink beer. I don’t have a meth lab in the garage. I’ve never taken oxycontin. I don’t grow pot, although that’s becoming enlightened chic. I don’t have a confederate flag. I don’t like NASCAR and am not sure what it stands for other than the “N” is for National and the “SC” is for stock car. I don’t much like country music, and bluegrass for only about 20 minutes. All of this cultural bombardment of who I am, lead to two reactions. One is, I grumble about it with others like me (just so you know, there are many of us.) This, though, is my private reaction, the reaction seen only, and uttered only, in the presence of other middle age white, anglo, Jesus – loving, southerners like me. We dare not speak it in mixed company. (Truth be told this group to which I refer, is not homogenous at all. Few Jesus – lovers, not all white, not all middle-aged, not all southern. They are, though, all male) But it is only in this company that I have heretofore expressed such sentiments.

My second reaction, well….it’s all Joseph. I’m silent. I go to work. I log on to Facebook, to family gatherings, wherever,, and just let the cliched references to me and those like me slide off like water off a duck’s back. And I stand there silently. Like Joseph. Smiling

 

I suppose I’ve blathered on enough about how tough I have it, enough blather for me anyway. Maybe too much for you. Sorry, you might well feel as though your group, what ever your group may be, is likewise unfairly treated. You may have more cause for self-pity than I. And truth be told, whether or not my assessment of how I think the world treats those like me is correct, I’m doin’ just fine, “Thank You Very Much.” Even though I’ve given a lot of word space to my grievances, in the final analysis they really are just a bunch of “small stuff.” And while I’ve been ranting Joe’s just been there standing, as he always does in my little nativity scene, quiet as a mouse, leaning on a stick, waiting for me to get to what’s really bothering me.

 

Let me start by saying that I can’t begin to know what Silent Joe had to deal with. I expect though, that our problems, on a day to day comparison, are nothing alike. From what I know of his situation, anti-male sentiment just wasn’t fashionable and probably not tolerated too well. I tend to think 1st century Nazareth, except for the occasional wandering Roman Authority, was a much less diverse society than the large southern US city in which I reside. And since there weren’t TV or movies and the like, well ….he didnt have to deal with all that crap either. Even so, I still really feel a kinship with him for no other reason than he was a Dad.

 

I’m sure that like me, he did the best he could with Jesus and his other kids. Like me, his best, probably wasn’t all that wonderful some times. From what little we know – and it is precious little – he held a job down, a carpenter. From what I know of 1st century life Joseph probably didn’t have all that many career opportunities. Most likely his Dad had been a carpenter, and I imagine that’s what he expected that his boys would be doing for a living. That’s not so different from me and my girls. I had no expectations that they would follow me into my line of work. I did, though, dream of future wherein they would go to college (and they have) just as I did.. So, at least in that sense, I saw them following in my footsteps. And they have done that.

 

Now, I’m making a big eisogetical leap here – fancy word for saying I’m making up a part of biblical narrative that really isn’t there – but I just have to think Joe thought all along that Jesus, James and Jude, and any others sons he had, would stay right there in Nazareth with him until he died. I think that’s a fair assumption since professional mobility was crazy hard in those days. Ditto for me. I didnt think the girls would be preachers, but I sure thought they’d never go too far from home. Well guess what. Joe was wrong. His boys went to Jerusalem, we’re told, which might as well been the moon in those days. Guess what again. I was wrong. My oldest is about to head to the west coast for who knows how long – heck, maybe forever. My youngest, well who knows right now? She’s still in college, but you know, depending on who she might marry, well who knows? At any rate, Joe and I have that sort of loss in common. It ain’t an easy thing. Not for me, anyway.

 

Now the bible never tells us anything more about Joseph, like I said earlier, after that going to the temple incident when Jesus was about 12. So we really don’t know what happened to him. Specifically, we don’t know when he died or any other details about his life. Some folks lived into their seventies and eighties back then, but that was very rare. How many of us would still be around at 50 without antibiotics? How many would be around to 70 without by-pass surgery? So lacking things like that, most folks took the big “dirt nap” by the time they were 40 or so. I can only sort of hope so for Joe, ’cause he’d have probably adjusted to his kids leaving, most of us do I hear, but I know very few parents who’ve had to bury a child. I don’t think I’d get over that. I don’t think Joe would either. I hope he wasn’t around to see how things worked out for his boy. I’m having enough trouble dealing with my daughter moving, and I have an Iphone and Skype and texts and email and airplanes and trains at my disposal. Thank the Good Lord!, but, Oh Sweet Heaven, take me first. Don’t let me live to see either one of them come to their end.

 

Wow! Sorry for that digression. We were talking about Joseph and him standing there silently – in my nativity scene and during the biblical story. Just quiet. Why even bring him up? That’s the question that comes to mind for me. He’s so insignificant, why even waste what little ink was wasted? Hmmm?

 

I’ve asked the question so, if you’re still reading, I’ll do my best to answer. Seems to me that the image of a father silently watching over his child is perhaps the most accurate representation of what it is to be a Dad. Sure, we work at out trade to provide sustenance for our kids. We teach them what we can. We try not to damage them too badly, and, when the time comes we let them go to whatever God has planned for them, or whatever they stumble into. All we really want is for them to be happy with their lives. We hope they live a long time. We hope they find a sweet, strong, attractive, intelligent dependable husband (or wife.) We hope they can have wonderful children like we did. Perhaps, on some Freudian level, we also hope they carry a piece of us into the future with them. But we can’t do that for them. They’ve gotta do that like we did. However that was that we did it. So I guess for all of us, since we have no control over anything anyway (especially the lives of others, even our children) silence grounded in faith in God’s plan for everything, including our kids, is the only fatherly portrayal that makes sense. Maybe Joseph is so silent ’cause he figured that out early on. Maybe his faith was stronger than mine. That wouldn’t be hard really. I mean…I believe, but Lord help my unbelief. With that said, I’ll be quiet now and wait and watch, hope for the best, and listen for some Divine direction. If I had a stick to lean on, I’d do that too.

 

Peace Friends

 

 

 

 

…..an early Christmas present from long ago and far away

carl and tina 1979    A friend of mine, Marty, who hails from Washington County as best I recall, recently sent me this photo from 1979. The tag in the corner said “October 1979.” Even if no date were on it, judging from the vests, my beard and the hair, that would’ve been my guess anyway. Marty hasn’t lived in Kentucky for decades. He lives outside of New York City with the love of his life. We haven’t laid eyes on each other for years, though we stood side by side in the UK Chorale for about 3 quickly lived years way back when. He pursued a career in music, I took a different direction at a fork in the road. Seems we each chose wisely. I think I remember reading that he recently retired after quite a long run with the Metropolitan Opera up there. The pictures he shares from time to time on facebook make me think that he, too, is enjoying a happy and rich life. I am glad for him, and now it appears, I am in his debt. I’ve not been one to do much photo-documenting of my life, but I’m sure glad he snapped this photo some 34 years ago, developed it, kept it, guarded it as treasure, scanned it, and sent it to me. That’s a lot of trouble for someone to go to, seems to me, especially for someone you’ve had nearly no contact with for 30 some years. In this act of kindness alone there is a lesson to be learned. I’ll leave you, gentle reader, to surmise your own lessons, but it makes me want to “pay forward” a little “random kindness” of my own. I better act soon, though, I know how I am. Thanks Marty

Anyway…..Years ago, probably just a bit after this pic was snapped, I took an elective course toward my degree at the University of Kentucky. The course was required. Well at least it filled the broader requirement of being an “Art Studio” course which was necessary for my degree. While I was still in High School, my Aunt Marilyn, had taken it upon herself to teach me my way around a dark room. Because of that I had developed an interest in Photography. Beginning Photography was an option to fulfill my degree requirement; And so, thinking I’d already have a leg up, and having access to my own private darkroom, well guess what class I took.

Happily, I was right, it was pretty easy for me, and I enjoyed it. I don’t really remember learning all that much. My darkroom skills were already adequate for the task – how to develop film, process prints, use the enlarger, crop, all that technical stuff. About all I really remember was the day they brought in the naked (or as we say it in the south, nekkid) models for the section on “Photographing the Nude.” Waking up that day, it felt like Christmas morning. I’s gettin’ to take pictures of nekkid women. Every 20 year-old’s dream. I won’t go into how disappointed I was when “Bob” came in and disrobed. Other than that though, there are two things I remember learning. The instructor – who called himself “Bones” – told us one day of his philosophic approach to photography. There are two things I remember him talking about. On how to take good pictures he said, “There are two ways to do it. One is, you control every variable. Setting, poses, lighting, and in the dark room, control the temperature. Control every little thing you can.” “Or,” he said, “you can do what I do and just take tons of pictures. Controlling everything’s too damn hard and I’ve never been able to control enough to get it right the first time.” (In retrospect I’m not sure if he was trying to teach about more than just photography or if he was speaking of a larger lesson that I still have difficulty learning.) And true enough, either of those methods will work. I take good pictures to this day, but I have to take lots of them. There is something else he said which I understood more immediately. I can hardly look at a photo today, any photo, like the one above, without hearing him say, “Taking a picture is a unique art. It’s sort of opposite of music.” I was interested. “What I mean is this. Think about how music exists – in time I mean. It’s never really there. I mean, we hear a passage build to something and it does, and we’re right there with the music. If it’s a song we know, we anticipate what’s coming and then in an instant the climax has faded and we are left only to remember  (and I’ll never ever forget this part) what never really was. We can’t ever hold on to it. We hear something coming and before we can have it, it’s gone. Music in a sense, never exists.” I know this is a little Zen for some, but I have thought of that often. He went on. “Photography, a picture, any picture, every picture, every picture ever taken, even bad photos, accomplish what music cannot. It freezes an instant, an eye-twinkling instant, forever in time. Hearts beating, lungs expanding and contracting, blood coursing through veins, the unknown thoughts of the subjects, all frozen in time.” He is correct on both counts, I think.

I suppose that’s why this picture, this unexpected gift, this act of random kindness, is all the more dear to me. It binds those principles Bones was speaking of even tighter. That boy there with the youthful beard. That girl there, that wispy flower. Well those two young people, like a song, they had disappeared from me. In a sense they’re still gone. They moved on the second the camera turned away. They moved on together though. They couldn’t freeze that moment, so they had to sing instead. The tune they spun along the way, and the melody we continue to live out, still push on to whatever wonderful coda God has planned. The song hasn’t always been wonderful. At times it has been unexpectedly glorious. For better or worse those two keep singing. At least the boy wishes sometimes he had the ability to do some editing to the composition, but we all know life is more like Jazz than it is like Bach. It’s a performer’s art, and so you live with what you play. When the chord changes aren’t the best, handle them nicely, deftly, with style and flash or don’t handle them all that well…whatever….but in Jazz there’ll be another run through the chorus. You’ll get another crack at it. There’s almost always (except the last time) another shot at the changes. The boy and girl there have gotten better, and all in all, they were given a pretty good chart to start with.

It wasn’t long before Marty froze that “twinkling of an eye” that the song had begun. Wow. They look so happy. The boy there, had no idea how wonderful it was going to be. I’m sure that thought wasn’t even present in that hairy head. Thanks again, Marty, for keeping that moment for me and the girl. I am so grateful you treated it like treasure, and so blessed that you would these, my sweet children back here from New York. It’s a more precious gift than you might have imagined.

 

 

and so now i enter the world of blogging

I may have finally done it. After a few years of reading what so many friends and colleagues think about this or that, I have decided to enter my frazzled (but may I say beautiful) voice into the same sometimes erudite, sometimes thoughtful, sometimes entertaining, but most often whiny, prattle which is the internet. It is my hope that in the days, weeks, and years (hopefully) to come, to share with any who might care, whatever is on my mind at a particular point in time.

That said, I want anyone who might come across these pages to understand why I am doing this. I want to be clear on this, if you disagree with something herein, I don’t care. I am not writing in this manner to persuade anyone of anything. I would expect much of what will be written would not be controversial. But then again maybe so, but that’s not my intent. I am doing this for a few reasons.

Having recently been exposed to Michael Duncan’s podcast The History of Rome (highly recommended by the way) I was led to reading Marcus Aurelius’ Meditations. The Roman emperor, Aurelius, is said to be one of the stoics. I don’t now if he was or not, and further, I don’t know a whole lot beyond the basics of stoic philosophy. He did, however, write this book which has endured and been republished continually, I suppose, for close to two thousand years. Whether or not Aurelius was a stoic – I think he probably was – Meditations is not a philosophy book. That is to say, it does not lay out any sort of constructive argument hoping to persuade one to that brand of philosophy. Meditations is simply a book, a journal really, of what this 50-something King of the Known World, was thinking about on a particular day. He was very reflective and thought it beneficial to write down what he was reflecting upon. I was reminded that once upon a time – a very long time ago – a time before a wife and children and a job- I found the same sort of written meditation, well….if not useful, at least therapeutic. So, that’s the first reason to write: Selfishness. It’s very hard for me to love anything or anybody more than me and I think this practice will be beneficial to ME. So there’s one reason to do this.

There is another reason to write. I hope to live a long time, and I have every reasonable expectation, at this point, to have at least another 20-30 years. However, both my parents have been dead for a few years now. I am fully aware that I am the eldest sibling remaining of my family of origin, and as such, I know that of that group of people I’m in all likelihood the next one to find out if my theology has been correct. I do have several older cousins whose health I monitor (again mostly for self intersted reasons) and they seem to be doing pretty well. So, while not anticipating an immediate demise, I’m close enough to the cashier in the heavenly (I hope) check-out line to begin to think of my posterity. (yet another selfish reason.) So in a sense I hope to leave something behind to my wife, and more importantly to my daughters and any children they might have, that would remind them that I was more than …..well whatever it is they think of me. I guess, in a way I hope that if I do this enough, I’ll get to shape the way I am remembered.

Finally, I do hope that from time to time something I write might at some point give someone a smile or a chuckle. Maybe one of my meditations might bring a tear. Perhaps as I share those things I think really important, a reader might be reminded of what is really important to them. In other words, I hope to accomplish that thing which a good song so often does for me, and that is, remind us that we are not alone out here, and never have been. So I hope we all benefit from what will follow.

Now. If I can figure this WordPress thing out……………..