Friday, June 29, 2012

The Freedom Files, pt. 2

As Independence Day approaches, here are some good words from a speech by Samuel Adams:

Let us contemplate our forefathers and our posterity; and resolve to maintain the rights bequeathed to us from the former, for the sake of the latter.

Instead of sitting down satisfied with the efforts we have already made (which is the wish of the enemy) the necessity of the times, more than ever, calls for our utmost circumspection, deliberation, fortitude and perserverance.

Let us remember that if we suffer tamely a lawless attack upon our liberty, we encourage it, and involve others in our doom.

It is a very serious consideration, which should deeply impress our minds, that millions yet unborn may be the miserable sharers of the event.

Samuel Adams - 1771


And in case that was a little too much for you, here is a Samuel Adams' Guide to Beer.

Thursday, June 28, 2012

On the bookshelf

Just because I know you are wondering if I still know how to read, here are a few I am working through or have recently finished and might recommend for your own enrichment. Just click on the picture to get the synopsis:

Wednesday, June 27, 2012

The Freedom Files, Pt.1

Carl Moeller, the President/CEO of Open Doors, recently sent out an email with this picture, a list of items prohibited in the Maldives. Item #3 is items contrary to Islam, which could include any number of Christian symbols and writings and most anything else that would express a viewpoint other than the prophet's.

As Independence Day approaches, remember to be thankful that we live in a country where contrary materials are still permitted.

We are still free to be offensive to people of other religions, or people without religion, in what we say, write and display. We can still wave around bibles, tell people their political views are wrong, write books telling everyone that Jesus got married three times and say that we think some things are immoral.

While there are many who would take this freedom away from us and make sure that we don't say or do or display anything that offends them, they haven't done so yet!

Saturday, June 16, 2012

Doing the Dad Thing!

The other day I was at the library with Ethan. He wanted to pick up some books that he had reserved, so we treked on over and he tried to scan them on the computer.

Much to his dismay, his account had too large of a fine for him to be able to get these precious books that he had been waiting for.

Obviously distraught, he came over to me, so I could resolve it for him.

I didn't have any money anyway, so my solution was to give him some unwanted advice. namely, he could put the books back and we could leave without them, or he could go see if he could work something out with the librarian.

He was more upset that this was the only solution I had for him. I was supposed to fix it for him. I repeated his choices and I told him I would be waiting in the car. so you don't think I am totally abusive, leaving my kid alone in a public library, he is ten years old and old enough to cause a ruckus if anyone tries to grab him.

After enough time elapsed that I thought maybe he had been spirited away, or was being held for truancy, or had just collapsed sobbing in the corner, he came out with a big grin. He had been able to work something out with the librarian and he was able to get his long awaited books.

It can be difficult to leave your kid to fix things on their own. We are, after all, the parents, and we want them to succeed, even if that means we are the ones who made it happen.

But, sooner or later our kids need to learn that one day the cavalry isn't gonna come to save the day. They will have to work things out on their own. And the sooner they learn to make this happen, the more confidence and capability they will have.

So, as unhelpful as I felt, I think I was doing the Dad thing and helping him grow. I think.

Friday, June 15, 2012

Hoka Hey

Hoka Hey, I am ready! or Let's Go! is what some of my ancestors used to say
As they rushed into battle or picked up sticks for the dangerous games they would play.

But sometimes I feel like a racehorse, stuck behind the gates
ready to charge down the track, but held back, waiting for the gates to fling open and to hear the bells ringing.

Like I am in a waiting room
Staring at the colorless wall
hoping my name is the next one they call

 a soldier
itching to get in the fight
but facing an enemy that will not show his face.

When I hear the thunderous sounds of the guns
I will gladly run to them
and even if i do not survive the fight, it will be one to remember

And while I am in the waiting room
I will work
to make sure I am ready when they call my name and tell me my time has come

And I will continue to snort and paw the ground
raging against the gates that I know will open soon.

Hoka Hey! I am Ready! Lets Go!

Wednesday, June 13, 2012

Wednesday Workout

This Wednesday's workout, posted to inspire and encourage you. If I can do it, you can too!

Yesterday was the 25th Anniversary of Ronald Reagan's famous speech in Berlin, so the workout is entitled:

Mr Gorbachev, Tear Down This Wall!

11:16 am, 98 degrees (I think i should join a gym, at least for the summer) 
1 mi run
10 Double jumping pull-ups
20 elevated push ups
30 box jumps
40 boxer kicks
50 Hindu Squats
40 boxer kicks (these ones with a little kid walking over from the pool and trying to sit on my chest)
30 box jumps
20 elevated push ups
10 double jumping pull-ups
1 mi run

Still very slow, so no times will be shared. Do try this at home, or abroad.

Monday, June 4, 2012

Just follow your heart???

Have you heard someone say that you should always follow your heart? Or when you are trying to make a decision, they let you know that you should just "Follow your heart" or to "do whatever your heart tells you is right" or "listen to your heart."

Have you ever known of anyone who has decided to "follow their heart", and it did not go well for them?

Writing around 600 B.C.E., the author Jeremiah wrote this:

“The human heart is the most deceitful of all things and desperately wicked.
    Who really knows how bad it is?" (NLT)

If this is the case,  maybe it is better advice to listen to what your heart says to do, then do the opposite.

Friday, June 1, 2012

Readers are _ _ _ _ _ _ s?

Here are a few books that I have grabbed hold of lately:

This first one, Zodiac, is the one that inspired the movie with Jake Gyllenhall and Robert Downey Jr. There is currently another new book about who the Zodiac killer is, but this one makes a compelling case for a certain nasty fellow and provides interesting information about the crimes.

Reagan's Secret War is about the efforts he and his administration took to avoid nuclear holocaust. The book paints a picture of his long crusade to end the threat of global thermo nuclear war (Shall we play a game?) and the idea of Mutually Assured Destruction as a deterrent.

Yes, I slipped into the ugly world of popular culture and read the book the Hunger Games. Emily's cousin told her he would take her to the movie when we were in California. So, she got the book and I escorted them to the movie. I found it disturbing, with all the children running around violently killing one another. But, I also found the story compelling and interesting. After thinking about it for a while, I do think it is worth the read.

American Sniper is the story of Chris Kyle, who has the most official kills of any sniper in U.S. history. The story is a pull no punches description of his time with the Seals, how he got there, his time "downrange" and how multiple deployments affected his personal life.