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tent cities

Saturday, February 28, 2009

Old news, perhaps, but I've been busy with my own problems and haven't given any consideration to the fact that people who lose their homes have to live somewhere.  And for an exceedingly large number of people, that somewhere is a makeshift shelter in a "tent city."

I have no solutions, I just wanted to raise awareness in case there are folks like myself who are not very aware.


I cried my eyes out at the wake and some more at the funeral.  This was unexpected, as I had been cool upon hearing the sad news.  There were a few tears here and there as I drove home each day leading up to the funeral, but it was controllable.  I suppose God allowed me to set those thoughts aside so that I could be functional on my job.  But Thursday night, the sorrow grew deeper.

I missed much of the wake service.  Apparently this is how the Sisters give a send off to one of their own: they do their own funeral service of sorts (there was a program with music, scripture, prayers) and folks were invited to come and tell their stories as it relates to the deceased one being honored.  This is the time for eulogies. As one Sister put it: it's intimate.  I'm sorry that I was not able to hear most of the stories.

The funeral was difficult as funerals go, but it was good.  Three bishops were present, along with a smattering of Brothers and other priests.  Religious from other communities, some from out of town, were present.

Lent begins

Thursday, February 26, 2009

So Lent has begun.  I hope everyone who wanted to was able to attend an Ash Wednesday mass or service.  Yesterday's no snacking was really tough for me.  This year I will once more give up sweets (candy, cake, cookies etc.) as well as sweet drinks (soda, punch, etc.) while giving myself an "out" by allowing juices.  I'll also commit to setting aside some fixed amount of dollars per week for alms.  As for prayer, I will have to work on that one.

Wishing everyone a good Lent!  May this be a special time of growing closer to Christ for all of us.

Funeral on Friday

Tuesday, February 24, 2009

I have a funeral to attend on Friday.  Christian burial of a most wonderful person.  I'm sure the ripples from this loss extends to the ends of the earth.

The Reader

Saturday, February 21, 2009

We saw the movie "The Reader" this morning. One word: complicated.  The movie itself is not complicated.  What's complicated is the human dynamics for the circumstances presented.  This is not a feel good movie.  If you want to watch a movie and then go to dinner afterwards and have a philosophical discussion of "should's" and "ought's" then this is it.


The day was taken up by major traffic snafus.  Major accidents had highways shut down.  We spent hours in that stuff.  

"We'll exit here." 
"No, that exit is closed off." 
"We'll exit here." 
"No, everybody's trying to exit there. Just look at the line."
So we end up exiting many miles beyond where we need to be, and doubling back via neighborhood streets.  A trip that normally would take 45 minutes now took two hours.
And that was going.  Coming back was the same story.  The freeway was still shut down and on top of it, rush hour was starting.  Oy, what a nightmare.

Any how, we later caught the 9pm showing of the movie "Slumdog Millionaire."  Good movie, but it's not as good as "The Curious Case of Benjamin Button."  It has a unique story line, culture exposure (learning value), different music, and it does have a more upbeat ending.

a long time ago

Sunday, February 15, 2009

color photo source

Congrats to Chandra Wilson for her "Supporting actress in a drama series" award at the
2009 NAACP Image Awards.

We were in class together one year in grade school. She must've made an impression on me, because I don't remember any other names from grade school. I remember hearing her name on TV one time. I then went and dug out my only yearbook from grade school and sure enough, it's her (that's the black and white photo). I suppose that's about the same level as "Hey, I sold her a hamburger one time."

Well, I just thought y'all might find it mildly interesting.

No, I still don't watch much TV and am only vaguely aware of the existence of the show "Grey's Anatomy." I can't name a single character in the show and I still don't know who "McDreamy" is and whether it's a nickname or a real name for the character.

great movie: Benjamin Button

Saturday, February 14, 2009

We saw the movie "The Curious Case of Benjamin Button" this morning. It's a great movie; both entertaining and thought-provoking and altogether well done. You just have to see it for yourself!

no, really, I can't

Saturday, February 07, 2009

I think we all have one of those friends: really nice people whom we wish were not SO friendly. A few weeks back, they heard I was sick and cooked for us. Except neither Gumby nor I can eat their cooking (waaay too salty). And they loaded us up; it wasn't just a single meal. I tried to eat it, but got a tummy ache. This isn't the first time. And probably won't be the last. Yes, I feel bad about throwing out food, but what am I to do? It would help if they'd just make the offer and give us the option to decline.

why not err on the safe side?

Thursday, February 05, 2009

Some atheists pooh-pooh the idea that there is a higher being, a heaven, or a hell because there is no scientific evidence for such things.

So let's take the flip side: if science says it is so, does it make it true? There was a time when science proved that women are intellectually inferior, that they are incapable of growing intellectually beyond a young girl's intellect. Okay, so that was flawed science. Until just a few years ago, science believed that dogs cannot see colors. They've since changed that position, saying that dogs can see colors, but not as well as humans do. Bottom line: science can be flawed.

Now to go with the science as positive evidence, I say that just because you don't perceive or understand it doesn't mean "it" doesn't exist. As far as my dog is concerned, heartworms don't exist in his world: he never sees one and he'll never understand what a heartworm is or does.

I love the observation "your God is too small." Anyone who expects to be able to wrap their mind around God is suffering from the "your God is too small" syndrome.

I wonder if the people who demand evidence of a higher being to their satisfaction also demand evidence for everything else. Do they demand proof that you were where you said you were: I've been at the store. Look here are groceries. I was at pool hall. Look, here is the receipt. I didn't go anywhere this afternoon; I was at home taking a nap. Here's the video.

Why not err on the safe side? It's not going to be awkward to face God eventually and say, "Uh, I thought you didn't exist." Now if God didn't exist but you believed He did, the only consequence is a life lived in faith, hope and love.