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Wednesday, October 28, 2015


     Well the World Series has begun. Am I the only one feeling kind of "ho humm" about it? Halloween is this Saturday. Our church is holding something called "Trunk or Treat." This will be a first for us. Few of us have never heard of Trunk or Treat so it should be interesting! Today being Wednesday, it is time for another Wednesday Hodgepodge. I hope that you enjoy this week's edition!

1. Are you comfortable with silence? If you're home alone, do you like silence or do you need regular background noise? Do you seek out times and places to be silent? What's your favorite place to find silence/be silent?
     I am very comfortable in my own company. I do enjoy silence, however it is virtually impossible to get away from all sound in this day and age. One of my favorite places to find silence is hunting in the woods. There is still sound from afar off but it is as quiet as I can find.

2. October 28th is National Chocolate Day. Can't let that go by without a mention now, can we? Will you celebrate? How? Let's say you can have one of the following right this very minute... a cup of hot chocolate, a strawberry dipped in chocolate, a bowl of plain chocolate ice cream, or a slice of chocolate pie...what's your pleasure?
     I'm going with a hot chocolate...with petit marshmallows.

3. How do you feel about blue jeans? Favorite thing in the world to wear or nope, don't own a single pair? How often do you wear blue jeans in a typical week? Do you own a blue jean jacket?
     I love blue jeans. I wear them several days a week. I do not own a blue jeans jacket.

4. Are you superstitious? If so, in what way?
     I am not really superstitious. I may be a little stitious but I'm definitely not super stitious!

5. If you had to come up with a costume using only things you have on hand right now, what could you come up with? 
     A police officer, a farmer, a hobo!

6. What scares you a little? What do you do when you feel scared?
     SWMBO getting angry! I become more tactically aware when I feel a little scared. I may arm myself depending on the circumstances. Better to have a weapon and not need it than to need a weapon and not have one.

7. Perhaps today will be the day I ______________________________.
     ...apply for a part time job.

8.  Insert your own random thought here.
     This past weekend we had a Gospel Meeting at the church building. We had a speaker come in from the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania. His name is Doug Hamilton and he is the preacher for the Camp Hill church of Christ, Camp Hill, PA. 
     Doug presented a series of lessons on Spiritual Giftedness and how to use your particular spiritual gifts to share the Gospel. I really enjoy a well crafted lesson and I'm here to tell you that Doug Hamilton has got skills! I particularly enjoyed how he "married" passages from the Old Testament with passages in the New Testament thereby demonstrating the consistency of the Bible narrative.
     I'll be writing more in future blog posts so stay tuned. Enjoy your Wednesday! 

Wednesday, October 21, 2015


     This is the time of year that like the proverbial squirrel storing nuts for the winter we gather wood pellet fuel. On Monday SWMBO and I had a delivery of a ton and a half of wood pellet fuel, 75 forty pound bags. It's a lot of work to un-pallet them and stack them in the garage. At least SWMBO will be warm for most of the winter. Being Wednesday, it is time for the Wednesday Hodgepodge. I hope that you enjoy this week's edition.

1. October 21, 2015 is Back to the Future Day. Did you see the movie? The sequels? In the second film, Doc takes Marty into the future to prevent Marty's future son from making a mistake. They leave 1985 and land on a 'skyway' on October 21st, 2015. So tell us, what were you doing in the fall of 1985?
     I have seen the trilogy and found them to be entertaining. In the fall of 1985 I was in the fourth year of a 30 year law enforcement career. My kids were 12 and 9 years old respectively. SWMBO worked as an Nurse's Aid in a nursing home. Wow! That was thirty years ago, a half a life ago!

2.  If time travel were possible, would you want to go to the future? The past?
     I am a History buff so I would love to travel to the past to observe some of the great events of history. I would love to see Jesus in person, seeing His miracles or watch Him interacting with the crowds. I'd love to be at the grave and see the resurrection first hand. There are so many historical events that I would love to witness. Definitely, travel to the past. The future will take care of itself.

3. We're not flying cars, but some of the technology imagined in the 80's film has indeed come to pass in real life 2015-flat screen TVs on the wall, tablets, fingerprint recognition, video conferencing, online banking, 3-D movies, motion controlled video games, drone cameras, and smart glasses (Google glass).  Do you worry technology is growing at a rate so fast we'll soon be unable to keep up with it's demands? Do you think the Internet does more harm than good? 
     Technology is growing at an amazing rate. I think that we can't keep up with it's demands now. We apparently do not have the wisdom to appreciate the unintended consequences of our technical advances. I don't know if the internet does more harm than good. One thing is certain with regard to technical advances is that it does not take long for someone to find a way to pervert such advances, not limited to the internet,  for evil.
4. Your favorite dish prepared in a slow-cooker? Your favorite fast food?
     SWMBO makes a pork chop chilli that is absolutely the best. The longer it cooks the hotter it gets. I guess my favorite fast food is a burger & fries. Burger King is my preferred drive through.

5. No time like the present, down time, face time, pressed for time, in the nick of time, make time, mark time, or just in time...which timely saying most relates to your life right now? 
     All of the above, depending on the day and the time of day!

6. Tell us about a place you went as a child or younger person that's no longer there or is now something else. How does that make you feel?
     I'm going with drive-in theaters! As kids we'd dress in our jammies and sit in the back seat to watch the movies. Inevitably I fell asleep before the end of the second feature. There was always a double feature.

7. Describe your comfort zone.
     Sitting on the couch with SWMBO and the fur babies watching a movie.

8. Insert your own random thought here.
     Winter is rapidly approaching here in NH. A lot of New Englanders strongly dislike winters but would not be happy living anywhere else. Winter is the price we have to pay for the privilege of enjoying the other three, fabulous seasons. Even in winter, New England has a beauty and a charm like no other place around the globe. 

Wednesday, October 14, 2015


       It is the middle of October, the ides of October. It is also Wednesday which means it is time for another exercise in self reflection, remembering the past, opining on current events and thoughtful contemplation. Our host, Joyce, does a remarkable job coming up with these questions every week. I urge you to join in on the fun. Go to Joyce's blog page to learn how. Enjoy this week's edition of the Wednesday Hodgepodge.
1. What's something that has recently 'tried your patience'?
     I went to the "Vet" for a routine follow up exam and to get some prescriptions renewed. I went to the grocery store to do our food shopping. I stopped by the pharmacy to pick up my prescription. The doctor's office sent in the wrong prescription. I completed the food shooping and proceeded to the check out. My purchases were rung up and bagged when I discovered that I did not have our debit card. AAARGH! That tried my patience!
2. Do you think patience comes to us naturally or is it something you have to learn as you grow? On a scale of 1-10 generally how patient are you? (1=I blow up at the drop of a hat and 10=I've got all the time in the world).
     I believe that patience is learned. Some people have the ability to learn patience better than others, but it is learned. On the scale of 1-10 I fall around 7, I think. Some days I drop to around 4. I generally roll with the punches despite my level of aggravation.

3. Share about a time when you felt like you could fly. Or a time you wished you could fly. Or a time you felt like you were flying.
     I enjoy powered flight. I once was able to pilot a Cessna with the aircraft's owner seated beside me. A friend from church owned his own Cessna 172 and graciously offered to take a couple of us up for a flight. It was exhillerating! When I was in the Air Force, I had an opportunity to fly a jet simulator. That is the ultimate video game! I completely enjoyed both experiences.

4. Your favorite song with the word fly in the title or lyrics, or your favorite song that relates to flying in some way?
     A couple of songs immediately come to mind. "Fly Like an Eagle" by the Steve Miller Band and "Gonna Fly Now" (The Theme from Rocky). A favorite church song is "Fly Away."

5. What's in your fall picnic basket and where are we picnicking in your neck of the woods this time of year?
     In my picnic basket is a thermos filed with hot apple cider. I also have a roast beef sub, chips, extra sharp cheddar cheeze and a couple of Cortland apples. I am picnicking at the top of one of the several mountains enjoying the colorful foliage.

6.  Carpentry, electrical, plumbing, landscaping...which skill would you most like to possess and how would you put that skill to use today?
     I'd love to be competent at carpentry, electrical and plumbing. I am not a fan of landscaping. I would use my skills to effect repairs and upgrades in my house. I would also use my skills to help others with repairs at their residence.

7. What's something you think is too expensive to justify buying lately?
     The deli in our grocery store has a chicken salad that is wonderful. The price of this chicken salad has risen to almost $10.00 per pound. That is too expensive for my tastes...pun intended.

8. Insert your own random thought here.
     In the Granite State we are experience the annual invasion of the "Leaf Peepers." This is both good and bad. It is good because many of the tourism related businesses profit from the influx of people and their dollars. It is bad because the people who are driving the leaf peepers are also leaf peeping while driving. Many of these leaf peeper drivers come from the state due south from NH. Their driving skills, under the best of circumstances, draw a huge vacuum, or put simply...SUCK! Add the added distraction of leaf peeping and these drivers become more of a hazard than they usually are.
     So if you have occasion to visit the Granite State to enjoy our world reknowned foliage, please drive carefully and watch out for those aforementioned hazardous leaf peeping drivers! 

Wednesday, October 7, 2015


     I must confess at the outset that with all the horrendous flooding going on in the Palmetto State, I am pleasantly surprised that there is a Hodgepodge this week. Joyce must have posted it wearing scuba gear. My thoughts and prayers go out to those families who have lost loved ones and to others who have lost all their possessions in the floods. Lord, have mercy! Now onto this edition to the Wednesday Hodgepodge!

1. It's October so let's get this out there first thing...have you jumped on the all-things-pumpkin bandwagon? How so?
     I have not jumped on the bandwagon per se, but I have sampled some pumpkin spiced coffee and Dunkin Donuts Pumpkin Cheese Danish thingy. SWMBO bought some Pumpkin Coffee pods for our Keurig coffee maker.

2.  "We have more power than will; and it is often by way of excuse to ourselves that we fancy things are impossible." Francois Duc De la Rochefoucauld  

What's something you once thought impossible, but in hindsight see as more a matter of lack of will?
     There are many things in my life that I'd thought I would never do. Life is a funny thing though, and as it turned out I have done them. For example, I never thought that I would ever teach a class. Several years ago it was my pleasure to be an adjunct instructor in a local college Criminal Justice program.  I taught courses in Police Patrol Procedure and Constitutional Law. I take pride in the fact that several of my former students are now employed as police officers.  

3. The rose is America's National Flower, but every state also has its own (click here to see the list). Are you happy with yours? If you were in charge what would you declare your state's flower? If you're outside the U.S. what bloom would you like to see labeled as your country's national flower?
     Flowers-Smowers...I'm not really a flowers person except for those occasions when I give them to SWMBO. Other than that I have no opinion on this matter.

4. What have you lost interest in recently?
     Major League Baseball! My beloved Red Sox closed out their season in Cleveland on Sunday and are done until next year.

5. In your opinion, who's the best living musician?
     Wow! That is really a tough question. Do you mean by instrument? Do you mean overall? Also, by what metric do you arrive at that decision? I don't know! Great question...but I just don't know!

6. S'mores-love 'em or no? Ever make them indoors? Last time you sat around an outdoor fire? Are making s'mores and sitting round a fire pit on your autumn bucket list? Do you have an autumn bucket list?
     I am not a fan of stores. I don't hate them, I just don't ever feel like "You know, a smore would just hit the spot right now!" I enjoy sitting around a campfire and talking with friends about life, love and memories.

7. Your favorite small town? Why?
     SWMBO and I like Quechee, VT. It has a gorge that is spectacular. There is a wonderful "Fine Dining" restaurant in town called "Simon Pearce." The restaurant is located in a glass factory that makes high end glassware. Sometimes while dining you can watch the craftsmen at their work. There's also a store called "Scotland By The Yard." They sell Scottish tartan fabric of all the clans of Scotland and everything else Scottish. SWMBO is part Scottish. It really is a nice place to get away to.

8. Insert your own random thought here.
     I wrote a blog post last week blasting President Obama for using the murders at UCC in Oregon for advancing his political agenda, specifically gun control. Well not to be undone, one of the current democratic candidates for president also politicized this tragedy during a campaign stop here in the Granite State. I was shocked! I didn't see this coming at all! (Just Kidding)
     LISTEN PEOPLE - The fact about the gun control agenda is that, at it's core, it is about CONTROL and not GUNS per se! 
     One of the statements that the former Secretary of State made that was chilling was that she would use the power of her office as president to bring forward gun control measures that would/could not pass congressional muster by means of executive orders. She must understand the concept of "rule of law" since she is an ivy league trained lawyer. 
     We are endowed by our Creator with the unalienable right of Liberty. Do not sit by and allow anyone to infringe upon that God given right. This woman is NOT qualified to be president!

Friday, October 2, 2015


     Yesterday a man walked into a Community College in Oregon and started shooting students. At last count thirteen people are dead and more are injured. This rampage ended because an armed police officer bravely entered the school, confronted the shooter and stopped him by shooting him. 
     Before we knew what actually happened, President Obama lost no time is getting in front of the news cameras bemoaning his inability to pass "sensible gun safety laws." He went on to say that the evidence shows that strict gun safety laws are effective in stopping this kind of violence. He further bemoaned the fact that the United States is the only civilized country that has the problem of mass shootings.
     This is "If you like your doctor you can keep your doctor" misinformation coming from the mouth of the Commander in Chief. Why anyone takes seriously what the President says is beyond me. He has been shown to be lying outright time and time again. This time is no different. 
     Chicago, IL, and Washington D.C. have some of the strictest "gun safety" laws in the country and, if the President is correct, should have the lowest incidence of gun violence. The FACT is that both Chicago and Washington have very high incidences of gun violence. The body count during a Chicago weekend often rivals the body count in Afghanistan, a war zone.
     Study after study has shown that areas that do not restrict gun ownership have lower incidences of all crime. These same studies show that areas that have strict gun restrictions have higher levels of crime. 
     The primary reason why this is so is that restrictive gun laws only disarm law abiding citizens. Criminals do not obey gun laws, non-criminals do! 
     I think it is reprehensible that when these horrible events happen and before we know what actually happened, someone gets their face in front of a camera to use the tragedy to move their agenda forward. The President's conduct in this instance is beyond contempt. The President is simply wrong!