Thursday, April 27, 2017

Dog eat dog world.

So, I’m walking down the road after a rain and a person comes driving a little fast and splashes mud everywhere. “ Doggone it” I yell.  “Why can’t people be more like dogs?” That’s what we need. More dogs and less people. Well I look and see this incredibly big cat looking at me. This thing was at least as big as a mid sized collie. Now, it’s been over 30 years since I did anything other than an occasional beer. ;-) But, it’s like I’m having a flashback. I’ll have what he’s smoking I thought to myself. Then I started to laugh and I don’t know why. It’ wasn’t that funny but I started to really laugh and couldn’t stop. the cat does an Alice in Wonderland fade and instead of a big grin the last thing I see is a pair of big green cat eyes. Weird. I'm freaked but I figure maybe it's a flashback to my misspent youth. I'll talk with my doctor about it.  So, I get home and turn on ESPN and kind of drift off with the mindless, breathless chatter of the sports world in the background.

  I then decide after my nap that I feel like driving to town and since it’s my day off I’ll drop by Panera Bread and get some coffee and my favorite, a Blueberry Scone.  Well, I’m going to my car and my neighbor who’s a nice guy. Divorced,  has his teenagers over about every two weeks and a devout church going person. Just an all around nice guy. Anyway, he comes running out and he’s saying “Hey,hey, hey.” So, I think somethings wrong and he comes behind me and starts to sniff my butt. “What the hell?” I say and I push him away. “What is wrong with you?” Well, he looks at me and I hear a low growl in his throat and he actually snaps the air and backs away from me. I swear if a man had a  tail it would have been between his legs. So, I’m really worried now about his mental health. So, I decide that I will call 911 from my cell on my way to the coffee shop. I know, I know. Why am I leaving if I think my neighbor is having a break down? Well, he’s not dying right? I need my coffee and I work hard and I’m going to relax with a scone and the Bleacher Report app on my phone at the coffee shop.

 Okay, I admit it. Out of site out of mind. So, I didn’t call anyone. Besides, I mind my own business. So, I pull up in town and get out of my car and all of a sudden this nice looking young lady comes wiggling (it’s the best way I can put it) over to me. Now, I’m not a pervert and I’m old enough to be her fath…uhh, older brother.  But, she comes up and sniffs my manhood and actually gives my neck a bite. Not too hard but enough to leave a mark. Well, I see this cop looking at us and I  think “Okay, he’s going to come over and at least see which of us is the aggressor. Right? Well, he comes running over and hikes his leg up in the air and I actually see his pants getting wet from his crotch down his left leg. OMG! What is going on? Then a group of people start to run over and a young dude actually jumps up on me and takes a bit of my ear. Then the cop and the dude and the young woman are yelling at each other. “Hey, Hey, Hey,Hey.” They just won’t stop and I find myself running into the coffee shop.

Well, I look out and  the cop is now grabbing the young woman from behind right in public and she turns and playfully nips his chin and then he…. Well, never mind. I can’t go there. Lets just say at this point the world is insane.

So, I go  to the counter of the coffee shop and I ask the nice older lady behind the counter if she has called the police about the situation out side. While I’m talking I feel something at my butt and there are five people  3 women and 2 men sniffing my butt and growling at each other. All of a sudden there’s a movement beside me and I see another couple who are making the cop and the young woman outside look like a Sunday School class in comparison.

Then I look over and the whole place is bedlam. People are yelling at the top of their lungs. “Hey, HEY,HEY,HEY” They are biting each other and snarling and humping and sniffing and it’s bedlam.

I close my eyes and just start to slide down to the floor. That’s when I hear the sports announcer in the background saying something about game 7 of the NBA finals and how the Cubs were the victim of the first no hitter of the year….A Dream! It was a dream. Thank God. Whew.

So, I go to the bathroom mirror and I look fine except for a red mark on my neck that looks like…Nah, it can’t be.

Anyway, I’m glad I’m off and can relax. It’s a dog eat dog world out there.



Tuesday, April 11, 2017

Thinking about Easter

Thinking about Easter


I haven’t been a fan of Easter since I was a kid. Easter Baskets and dressing up and going to church. Easter egg hunts and the cool time (she wouldn’t agree but she most likely won’t read this) my little sister got sick on Easter eggs and spewed those suckers across  the room and all over her pillow.  Yeah, I was a bratty older brother and after my first concern and seeing she was okay. The “wow, that was kind of cool older brother reaction started up.” I would get a new “Easter hat” every year. Yeah, even as a child I loved fedora’s. Go figure. But, as I got older and even when I went to church I didn’t like going on Easter. It was Amateur Hour seeing all those folks that never came to church fill it full one Sunday out of the year. Casual dress not an option on that day. The sermon was hyper and dramatic with images of Jesus on a cross and how low down and nasty all us lowly sinners were in the sight of God. Then the good news as he rose again and if the minister did it right? Not a dry eye in the house.

Now, don’t get me wrong. I’m not making light of the crucifixtion or the resurrection. I’m just saying that knowing exactly what the sermon is going to be and exactly how it was going to play out made me hesitant about going.  Still, that’s just the churchy part of Easter and that is the only part of it that I really didn’t care for.

I was at the cemetery one day in Altoona, Alabama visiting the graves of my maternal grandparents who pretty much raised me off and on. I heard “Happy Easter” in my mind and felt peace and a knowing that they were not in the ground. The body had gone back to the earth but they had already experienced an eternal Easter.

I don’t do much church these days. I met my wife at the Gadsden, Alabama Vinyard Christian Fellowship and we went there until we moved out of state in 1999/2000. The people there became like family and I experienced great spiritual awakening there. I wouldn’t trade it. I don’t know that we would fit in there anymore. But, that’s okay. It was part of the journey and it was beneficial to me and to Cindy and I wouldn’t trade it for the world.

I have read the bible more than once in my life. I have certain scriptures that come back to me in times of stress to give me comfort and in times of comfort to give me gratitude. However, I see so much preaching at people about what the bible says these days. The problem is the people wanting to make the bible the “law of the land” misuse it. Most of the evangelical and charismatic preachers and bible thumpers have no knowledge of how the bible came to be. No real understanding of the language it was originally handed down or the context of the political and spiritual and religious environment it came out of in different eras. Yet, they repeat the “Word” the same way it was repeated to them. With itching ears to hear what makes them feel justified in their judgement and anger and political world view.

If you want to make a fundamentalist Christian good and mad at ya? Just dare to say that God is love and therefore you have a real problem believing that love would ever allow a place like hell to be eternal torment for the “sin” of not reciting the sinners prayer. I know certain Christians these days that would fight you to the death in defense of the conservative republican party and the concept of an angry old man in the sky burning sinners forever and ever. But, mention feeding the poor or accepting refugees or healing the sick? OMG! What are you a socialist commie pinko that hates America? Anyway, that’s a blog for another time. This one is about Easter.

There are  two things I do miss about church. If I ever do go back to Gadsden I will more than likely go back to the Vinyard (at least until I decide or they decide that my little liberal butt shouldn’t be there) One is Communion. Despite the snarky atheist silly and simplistic reaction claiming  that Christians are cannibals and idiots for believing a wine and wafer is the blood and body of Christ. One of the most holy and awesome things I have ever experienced is that moment when the wafer is on my tounge and the juice or wine follows and I give myself wholly in my own spirit to the Holy. To that which can’t be put in a box or physically described as standing over there in the corner. It’s awesome and I miss it.

The second thing I miss about the Vinyard in particular is the worship. I miss being able to just drift off in my own meditation between me and God while the congregation around me and the worship band on stage ignore me and allow me to just stand or close my eyes or put my hands up or in my pockets and just be in the presence of the Holy as I understand the presence in my life. Hard to explain but I miss it.

Easter: I have to admit some things that will make some Christians mad and some worry for my soul. But, as my mother always says “God already knows me, why should I care what you think?” I have very real doubts about virgin births and physical bodies raising from the dead and going to a realm up in the sky somewhere sitting beside an angry old man and begging him every minute not to destroy his poor creation in a fit of wrath and rage.  I really don’t get into that at all these days and can’t say I believe it no matter how many people quote the bible at me and turn blue in the face trying to make me think such a “god” as that is to be worhiped.

But, what do I feel about Easter? First when I die it wouldn't surprise me at all if Jesus is the only God I see. The incarnation of the holy and the very essence of who and what we are becoming. On the other hand it won’t surprise me at all if the Holy (what we call God) is so much more than Christianity and any other religion. That we are evolving eternally just to begin to know the reality of what we call God or Ground of Being or any other word or concept for ultimate truth and reality you need to use. I kind of lean towards that as a matter of fact.

So, knowing at this point I sound like a very liberal bordering on heretic to some Christians and a fool to some secularist I do want to say this about Easter. About Christ. I find the concept of going in to a burning building to rescue a loved one to be heroic. To rescue anyone for that matter. But, to go in to a burning building knowing that you can’t rescue them. Knowing that they will die and if you go in you will die with them. That’s Love. That’s what the incarnation of Christ is to me. Pure Love and love never fails.

So from this heretical sinner and believer in tales to you I say:

Happy Easter!