Just rambling thoughts about anything that happens to be on my mind and that usually isn't much!
This blog best viewed with IE4 or greater and tongue in cheek

Saturday, November 22, 2008

Restless Natives

The Warden and I are beginning to struggle a little bit with the audiological part of our lives.  Understanding what is said is extremely difficult when other noises are happening at the same time, such as talking in a restaurant where nearby tables are also talking.  The ability to sort the sounds of speech from all the other sounds is becoming a greater and greater problem, even at church.
A couple weeks ago the Warden and I were particularly interested in a sermon topic and were becoming engrossed in the sermon.  About that time off to my right, the disgruntled grunts of a toddler became very evident.  The toddler, unable to communicate verbally, was making her wishes known through squirms, squeals and grunts.  The young mother struggled desperately to contain the child on her lap.  Finally a toy was selected and offered that stilled the child.
Our attention returned to the sermon to hear another verse or two being read.
As the preacher began his commentary on the verses, what had to be a tug of war between a small girl and her not too much older brother was taking place in the pew just in front of us.  The action in itself would not have made much fanfare except the young girl decided to ask for help at the top of her voice range.  That young mother too, acted quickly "shushing" the child and arbitrating the matter to its eventual end.  The arbitration however did not set to well with the older brother who "whispered" (in a voice audible for the dead) his disapproval.  This brought a quick "chin grab" by the father who, eyeball to eyeball with the child, settled the matter.
The fervor now complete, we returned to the commentary, another verse selected and the recitation of the verse started.
Off to my right a young man starts pushing a toy tractor along the top of the pew, his lips vibrating the "make-up" noise of a diesel tractor under full throttle and load.  Just as the young man was taking another breath and the tractor another make-up gear, the father scooped up the child onto his lap.  The action was so quick the child was taken by surprise and the tractor sounds stopped.
We now were able to hear the end of that verses commentary.
The oldest brother of the family on our pew and the oldest sister of the family in front then decided to exchange the books that each were reading.  As she turned to give her book backwards, his 7 year old chubby hands failed him and the book tumbled to the floor in a loud thud.  All eyes in the auditorium turned on the sound.  From each respective pew of the families involved, there was a scurry as the parents shushed the corresponding delinquent.
Our attention then returned to the last lines of the sermon.
As the Warden and I made our way through the exiting parishioners, Sister Straightlace took hold of my elbow.  "May I speak with you?" she asked.
As we stepped out of the traffic flow, she stated, "the natives were a bit restless this morning."
"Yes ma'am" I replied with a rather embarrassed smile.
"You do know I am talking of your grandchildren," she further stated.  "Something needs to be done.  Children need to be taught to sit quietly in church."
Now some may say here "the devil made me do it" ..... but really I think I had some inspirational help.
"Yes ma'am.  And I am thankful YOU noticed my grandchildren were in church this morning just as they are at every congregational meeting."  Then I looked her in the eye, "May I ask where YOUR grandchildren are?"
PR 17:6 Grandchildren are the crown of old men


Friday, November 21, 2008

Dearly Beloved we are here to honor .......

"Hey!" he says with a great big smile and firm handshake, "It's great to see you.  What's it been? Fifteen, no twenty years since I seen you two?"  A round stories follow beginning with "you remember the time ..."
Then a light comes on as the mind fully remembers, "Oh yeah, now I remember the last time I seen you.  It was at (fill in any name here)'s funeral.  Strange we only meet at these things.  We need to get together sometime soon." 
The afore mentioned story has happened at every funeral I have ever attended. 
Yesterday, the Warden and I attended yet another funeral of a woman whose life had been unexpectedly shortened.  Yesterday the Warden and I again vowed to renew old acquaintances and friendships.  Isn't it strange that we let "life happen" rather than "live life"?  We let life control us rather than staying in control of our lives?
"Yesterday" ... unlike "tomorrow" .... can never be changed and yet it will bear the memories that forever shape our lives.
Just some rambling thoughts.

Saturday, November 15, 2008

Out on the Town

This has been the second Saturday night in as many weeks that the Warden and I went out.  Last weekend we went to a wedding reception and even danced a couple times (kind of hard to do when your holding a grand-daughter between you .. but did give me a good excuse for stepping on her toes!)  But it was fun none the less.
And then tonight we went to the movies, ate supper out and then went to Wal-Mart before coming home.  It had been awhile since we had been to the movies ... and the $7.50 that use to buy two admissions, a tub of popcorn and a barrel of pop was about one third enough!  And I have to admit, I was thinking there was no way the movie could be THAT good ..... but I was wrong.
We went to see "Fireproof" .... and it was worth every penny.  I don't care if you've been married 1 year or 40 ... spend the $25 dollars and go see it (with a bucket of popcorn and a large soda pop of course).  And if you don't get blurry-eyed sometime during that movie, you're a lot tougher than me (or dead). 
I don't imagine that it'll win any awards from Hollywood even though the acting was good, the story-line great and I haven't heard ONE bad thing about it from any who has seen it.  However to win awards from Hollywood .... there needs to be vulgar language, nudity and some sort of political statement to blame Bush for something.
Anyway ..... the Warden and I sure agree on this ...... go see the movie (even if you have to float a loan from the local bank ... I hear Congress is giving them more!)  Somewhere in that movie, you'll see yourself.

Tuesday, November 11, 2008


How do you ever adequately thank the veterans for the service they have provided this nation?  Some gave the ultimate sacrifice, some suffered with wounds but all suffered the absence of being with loved ones.
Over the years I have met many men/women who served in WWII, Korea, Vietnam as well as the more recent wars of the middle east and I admire each.  However, recently I found out that a friend had once served as a Marine.  Due to his age, I ask him if he had been in Vietnam.  His response was that he had only been on one base outside the USA mainland.  When I ask him which base, his response was Guantanamo.
Doing some quick math in my head, "What year?" I asked.
"1961 through 1963" was his quick response.
"We're talking Bay of Pigs and the Cuban missile crisis!" I stated rather emphatically.
"Yep" was his only response, offering no further explanation but rather lead off into another direction of conversation.  My attempts to learn more brought only "yes" or "no" answers.  Over the next few weeks I tried to no avail to learn more of his service during that time. 
Then one day he handed me an article from a major newspaper, "You wanted to know what I did in Cuba?  Read this."  I quickly scanned the article which had been written after the release of material from the archives.  Things that had been locked away for years in files marked "top secret".  The cold war era of espionage, covert operations and CIA operatives. 
The article was bringing more questions to my mind than it was answering.  "This is CIA stuff, not Marine."
"I and 32 other sharp shooters were recruited, trained, dropped into the bay to swim ashore on Cuba.  We spent 63 days there with orders to disrupt" was his response.
"So when Kennedy said there would be no American servicemen on Cuba, he wasn't exactly telling the truth?"  It was more of a statement than a question, but I needed clarification.
"We had no identification or dog tags.  Had we been caught, there would have been no trial."  Having said that he headed out the door and to this day I have never yet got any more of this mystery answered.
But I do wonder how many have served in such a manner and never said a word.
Thanks to ALL veterans.

Sunday, November 2, 2008


Big bowl of tallerina ..... $20
Hot rolls and a salad ....  $10
3 Butterscotch pies   ..... $ 5 /ea
Birthday Cards          ....  $ 2 /ea
Surprise birthday party with a family tribute to dear ole dad ..... priceless!!!!
My girls and the Warden pulled a fast one on me last night.  Since baby Ruth (my youngest daughter ... not the candy bar) has been down visiting for a couple weeks, they decided to celebrate my birthday a little early before Ruth went home.  Last night under the guise of a family gathering at the middle daughters house, they completely caught me off guard with a surprise birthday party a couple weeks early.  There was my favorite dish tallerina ... hot rolls .... salad and the Warden even made me some butterscotch pies! 
After supper we had a family singing, which is one of my favorite pastimes and I didn't even have to beg!!  Each of my girls have tremendous vocal talent, so anytime I get a chance, I want to hear them sing .... but usually it's a little hard to get them all together to sing.  Then the older grands all had some songs they wanted to sing for Pappy, it was quite a performance!  There were cowboy songs, truck driving songs and a couple gospel hymns.  Proud Pappy couldn't have buttoned his shirt after it was over.
Then each of my girls read letters they had written about childhood memories, values they had learned while growing up and some funny things they remembered.  Even if they didn't bring a crown, I felt like a king .... actually, a crown wouldn't have fit because my head was swelled so much.
It just don't get better than this! 
(There's a couple pieces of pie left ... I think I'll go get me a piece now)