Saturday, January 31, 2009

Our New Religion

Over 100 million TV watchers will join 100,000 people to worship at the altar of the USA's largest faith. This group of worshipers is so large that only estimates can approximate the total number of worshipers world wide. This Sunday is the ultimate service and only the lucky (read wealthy) few can attend the service live. Those lucky enough to attend in person often pay exorbitant fees to get into the service venue. Once inside the will be asked to give even more to satisfy the needs of the worship leaders. Those who worship in their homes, often in large parties, are asked, over and over, by polished salesmen, to give to support the ministry. For those who are not familiar with the service, readers and observers explain what is happening at each point of the service. The observers call attention to little known facts about the worship leaders and their personal assistants. This Sunday is the culmination of many services held regionally across the nation every Sunday. The leaders of the service tomorrow have been picked on the basis of their performance in the regional events leading up to this one last final Service of the Church year which begins on August first.

Once more we will crown the top worship team in the nation and they will be rewarded with special rings and parades in their home towns. We will celebrate our favorites by wearing clothing emblazoned with the logos of their worship team. We will talk about this last event until the worship year begins again and we again follow the actions of our favorite worship leaders, hoping that this year they will make it the the Super Bowl.

Wednesday, January 21, 2009

Inauguration Part Dos

We watched much of the Inauguration ceremony on C-Span last night. It was nice to watch the activities without the usual commentary. Basically, C-Span just let the cameras roll and let us make our own conclusions. I was blown away by the size of the crowd; I can't remember seeing that many people at an Inauguration. I was also really impressed by Obama's address. I'm ready to see the congress work with him on getting things going. He has an ambitious program to implement, and one that should produce positive results very soon. He has a lot of support right now and he needs to make the most of it. I honestly never thought I would see an American-African elected as President of the United States. And, certainly not with such an outpouring of support. Go Barak, go!

Sunday, January 18, 2009

Inauguration Concert

I had forgotten about the Concert at the Lincoln Memorial today. We didn't do much today, just lay around and watched TV. Then this afternoon we went to Ontario to see the movie "The Curious Case of Benjamin Button" with Brad Pitt and Cate Blanchet. What a wonderful film. I had seen the trailers on TV and I was intrigued, so we went over to see it. It was indeed a wonderful and wonder filled movie. I hope it does well because it is such a thought provoking picture. Go see it.

We got home a little after 7 pm and had a bite to eat. Then Jean went to take a shower and I watched the end of the Pittsburgh Baltimore football game. I was casting around for some thing else to watch when our daughter called from Massachusetts. The snow and ice are causing a lot of problems, especially for Cathy since she uses a walker. It's tough to push one of those things through the snow. Jean got out of the shower just as Cathy and I were ending our phone call, so I gave the phone to Jean and came in to check my e-mail. Now comes the part about the Inaugural Concert. I went to my home page at Google and they had photos and live feeds from Washington D.C. For the first time in many years I found myself being strongly moved by the words of our new President. I have a deep feeling of hope for our nation despite the many challenges it faces. I think we did it right this time, I think that we have someone who will bring us together rather than try to keep us in fear. I will keep President Obama in my prayers.

Saturday, January 17, 2009

Maybe I Am Getting Older

This has been a real winter. We have had a lot of snow and ice. I got to use my snow blower every day for a week or more. It hasn't snowed much since New Years and the snow has started melting on the South side of buildings. There are a lot big piles of snow by parking lots that will be there for a long time. And then there is the ice. Under all of the snow there is a thick slab of ice. A couple of weeks ago I fell on my butt getting out of my pickup at R Big Burger. No body saw me fall, so I wasn't too embarrassed. But, I hit my shaved head on a chunk of ice and I bled quite a bit while waiting for my take out order, felt a little funny sitting there holding a wad of paper napkins to the back of my head to staunch the flow of blood. It stopped before my order came. I still have a scab back there. Then, yesterday, it was really slick, freezing fog on everything. So, of course, I slipped going out to the car. I didn't fall, but I did some pretty fancy footwork and twisted my knee. Hurt like hell, still does, but not so much. It's the right knee, the same one that sustained a tear of my medial collateral ligament on my last day as a wrestling coach. I hope that I didn't complete the tear. I have fallen on the ice a couple of other times, but with no damage to my body, so I don't count them. I think I'll start using the walking that Cathy gave me 6 or 7 years ago. Hopefully I won't have to start wearing chains for my shoes.

Tuesday, January 6, 2009

It's Snowing!

Remember those childhood days when you would get out of bed, look out the window and shout "it's snowing!". Then you would be glued to the radio listening to the school closure announcements hoping your school would be among those listed. If school was closed, it was back to the bedroom to get dressed in your snow play outfit. Then, out the door with your sled headed for the sliding hill. If it was the first snow or very deep snow the first order of business was to pack the hill. All the kids would walk up the hill sideways, footprints side by side packing a trail for the steel runners of the sleds. If there was someone there with a toboggan or skis they made the first few runs and packed the snow without the sidesteps up and down the hill. Then it was sledding, sometimes without stopping for lunch, or more often a quick trip home for a sandwich and a cup of hot chocolate, then back to the hill. It seems strange today that such a simple thing would keep us occupied for the entire day. Climb the hill, slide down, then back up the hill and down again. For adventure we would go double or even triple belly flop down the hill. The person on top seldom made it to the bottom of the hill still connected to the sled. When we finally quit for the day our clothes would be soaked and we would be shivering with the cold, standing around the stove in our shorts and bathrobes getting warm. We would repeat this sledding day over and over, often into the night using the light of a fire at the base of the hill. I can remember days when I wore new Jeans sledding and my legs and underwear would be blue from the dye in the Jeans. The color would stay for several days until it wore off. I still get excited about seeing the snowfall, silently shouting "it's snowing."

Thursday, January 1, 2009

A Quiet New Year's Eve

Well, we rang out the old and rang in the new last night. The climactic time came with Jean asleep on the love seat and me choosing music for my playlist. The evening started with a bang, we have a guy who lives here who is a pyrotechnics expert and each New Year's Eve he stages a fantastic fireworks display from Vale Butte. It was a great show lasting about 45 minutes. I hope the town continues to donate funds to support the fireworks. We should start working for next year right now while the great show is still fresh in our collective minds. I tried to take some pictures with my new camera, but our neighbor had her porch light on and all my pix were wiped out by the ambient light. I wanted to show the snow covered butte lit up by the fireworks, but no such luck. I would like to wish my readers, both of them, a blessed and prosperous New Year!