Saturday, February 03, 2007

A special shout out ...

Welcome to the southern hemisphere! A special HOWDY to the most remote visitor's to "I wasted time ... and now doth time waste me ..." Glad to have you Beijing, China; Ningbo, China; Brisbane, Australia and Homebush, Australia! Nice to have you aboard. Oh, and I do not want to forget Piazzola Sul Brenta, Italy! Hey, if we all get together we can make a pretty awesome lunch buffet. Everybody bring their speciality. China, you've got the crab rangoon and the egg rolls. Australia, bring some Walk About Soup and maybe something with some Kangaroo in it please. Italy ... Ravioli and Spaghetti! I've got the burgers and steaks! We'll meet at my house tomorrrow at noon!

Peace, ya'll ...

3 negative things about Chicago today

It totally slipped my mind what cold feels like. It is 2:53pm and the official temperature is -3. That little "dash" sign before the "3" means "negative." 3 degrees below zero. I have been 23 degrees colder than that in my lifetime but that was also about 23 years ago. Two 23's can make all of the difference in the world!

But can I be honest? I kind of like it. I would rather it would be -3 than +103. Seriously. I have this big overstuffed down jacket and huge gloves and when I climb in them it feels just like being inside. Except that my eyeballs freeze open. When I arrived for the first session of the seminar I'm attending at Willow Creek last night it was dark and the wind was howling. There were not many cars in the parking lot. I encountered only one person as I made my way from my car into the building. I think it was a woman but I could not really tell because she was all clothing. I mean everything was covered. She even had one of those "gonna rob a 7-11 ski masks" pulled over her face. The only reason I know she was a she is because as we passed on the tundra of a parking lot she said, "get a hat." The she faded off into the crystal clear night.

Not bad advice, that. I have been told that 99% of your body heat escapes through your head. This means that if you have a REALLY good hat you could ski naked and stay quite warm. Maybe I'll give that a try tonight. Hmmmm.

Film at 10.

Thursday, February 01, 2007

Appointed ...

Man, I have to tell you ... I'm still wrestling with that whole "God appointed ..." thing. God appointed a FISH? Holy cow (no pun intended toward the animal kingdom) how big is this God if He can appoint a fish? Nevermind that He also appointed a plant, a worm and a scorching east wind. I don't have a problem with the whole Jonah story. I believe it. I buy into the whole thing. It's just that somehow reading the English Standard Version caused it to trigger lights, buzzers and bells in my head.

"God apponted ..."

It makes me wonder what God has appointed in my life and I didn't even know it was from Him. A meal with a friend? A doctor's appointment? A wrong turn? A spur of the moment compulsion to ... whatever?

God is tricky. God is not safe. He plays by His own rules and answers to no one. Especially not to me. Be glad. Be very glad. I would have wiped out a lot of people and places by now....

Tomorrow I am leaving for a seminar at Willow Creek. It is called "An Ordinary Day With Jesus." I'll be looking for things appointed. Problem is, I most likely won't recognize them if I see them. I mean, I'd have to question every potted plant, every shopping cart in a parking lot, and the remote control of the tv. And that's just for starters. The good news? It appears and time has shown that God's appointments can be trusted. The older I get the more I realize that a big part of my job as a people is to simply love Him and stay out of His way. He, my friend, is large and in charge.

Talk to you from the Windy City, home of .... DA BEARS.

<----One seriously hacked-off appointed worm.

Tuesday, January 30, 2007


Today I got a haircut. It is short. I like it that way. Nobody else does. But it's my hair. So tough noogies.

Today I went with my son to get his oil changed. Well, actually the oil in his car. When they drained his old oil they immediately came in and told us that he had less than a quart of oil in it. He did not blow his engine but nobody knows why. I just looked at him. For a long time.

Today I rolled on the floor with my 8 month old granddaughter. She is the Queen of the Universe in my opinion. We drooled together. She pooped. I didn't. She stuck her fingers up my nose. I didn't.

Today I made an appointment with a Christian counselor. I don't know him but I want to tell him some things. He has to listen. It's MY TURN to blow off steam for a while.

Today I read the book of Jonah out of the bible. Three times. I noticed that God "appointed" things like a storm, a fish, a plant and a worm. That's what it says. He "appointed" them to do certain jobs. And then God "spoke" to the fish. He told the fish to throw Jonah up. And please do it on dry ground. This all gives me deep thoughts. It makes my head hurt. If God can "appoint" a worm surely He can "appoint" me in the right direction. Surely He can "speak" to inner bruises and make them heal. God? Appoint and speak, please Sir. Anytime now would be just fine.

Today I drank 2 cans of Vernors ginger ale. My dad used to walk my brother and I to their storefront bottling plant in downtown Detroit and buy us a mug of it out of "old oaken barrels." Dad's gone and I drink from a can now. La la la la life goes on.

Today I got an e-mail from a friend in San Diego. She told me that "maybe you could take your brain out, hold it on your lap and rock it for a while when it's especially fussy." Ok, I admit to taking that out of context. But nobody has ever told me to do that before and so I found it worth sharing.

Today I had lunch with my best pastor friend on the planet. And best of all ... he bought!

Today (actually tonight) I drove with sun glasses on because they are prescription sun glasses and my drivers license says I have to wear glasses when I drive and my regular glasses were at home. (I know that was a huge run-on sentence. Deal with it.) And now I wonder, would it be better to get a ticket for driving without glasses or for driving at night with sun glasses on? Where does one get the answer to this question?

Today was good. I can't wait to see what tomorrow brings.

Monday, January 29, 2007

Shut up and deal ...

It started with the Milky Bones. It always starts with the Milky Bones. I give her one every time she comes in from doing her "doody" outside. She knows what to expect and walks straight to the container, waiting with less than exemplary patience. She gets her bone. I get to have (relatively) clean carpet.

Then she progressed to being the self-appointed family guardian. There does not need to be a knock at the door, a car door closing nearby or even a face at the window. If a cricket chirps she's on it. If a leaf falls to the ground she's straining at the window to make certain it isn't a terrorist act. If a neighbor 3 doors down burps too loudly she faces their direction and proceeds to ream them out with the most remarkable stream of dog obscenities you've ever heard. Very impressive.

She is able to discern between a plane flying over and a truck on the street. The truck gets barked at. The plane is ignored. She knows a ringing cell phone from a door bell. How? Who told her? She doesn't open an eyelid at the cell phone. God help whoever rang the doorbell. If the dryer contents are off balance and it begins banging the floor like a mad cannibal on a drum at dinnertime it's no big deal. If the mailman closes the mailbox she's ready to rip his leg off, mace him with his own can of mace and hold him down until authorities arrive.

Bailey the Killer Beagle has a mind of her own. It's only the size of a walnut but it works.

And now? Now she is ready to learn to play cards. Poker I suspect. It's the card game closest to her nature. (I would think long and hard before betting against her. She has a killer poker-face.) You think I'm kidding? No. No I am not. She's been practicing her poker-playing-posture (henceforth known as her "PPP.") Who told her to sit like that? She's been watching. Watching I tell you. Observing quietly from the corners of the room. Seeing how we do it. Learning.

I suspect she will be shuffling a deck of cards any day now.