Another School Shooting ~ Ignoring the Obvious

In spite of my lack of artistic talent, I do admire people who are gifted that way, and usually enjoy seeing their work on display. There are exceptions, though. I don’t like those goofy looking pictures with wild, swirly shapes and weird colors, and maybe a random eyeball or two thrown in here or there. Some kinds of artistic expression are so bizarre that they kick in an involuntary gag reflex. You know, like when you accidentally stick your toothbrush down your throat – or you happen to see Continue reading

Posted in Faith, Family, and Culture, In the News, Insights, Right Side Up, Wake Up Calls | Tagged , , , , | 9 Comments

A Curious Thing About Love

The first thing I recall being taught about curiosity was that it has a lethal effect on cats. No one bothered to explain it in pragmatic detail, and I don’t recall anyone ever actually producing a dead cat to validate the theory, but the lesson was clear. Curiosity was dangerous, and we shouldn’t adopt feline proclivities as a pattern for life. After all, look where “Catwoman” ended up—a grownup running around at night dressed up like a cat. How embarrassing. No wonder she wore a mask.

More Questions than Answers ~
In spite of the admonition against curiosity, Catwoman’s very existence cried out for answers. How far did this compulsive cat fetish go? Did she make little rumbling sounds in her throat when she was getting her hair done? Was personal hygiene reduced to licking her hands and rubbing them all over her face and ears? Could you take a Continue reading

Posted in Faith, Family, and Culture, Insights, Right Side Up, Valentine’s Day | Tagged , , , , | 2 Comments

Breaking Free from Our Secrets

With all the hype and hyperbole regarding the famous, or infamous, House Intelligence Committee “Memo” released on Friday, the news has been full of debates about hidden things. Secrets can be intriguing and since everyone seems to be talking about them, we might as well join in.

In considering the subject, it occurs to me that I didn’t have a lot of secrets in my early years, mostly because there was nothing about me important enough to hide from anybody. If I had paid more attention to how the power of a little intrigue catapulted the “Hardy Boys” to fame and fortune, things could have been different. All I needed was a cool mystery, something I could make all my friends swear not to tell anybody.

For instance, if I told a few select friends that I found Continue reading

Posted in Faith, Family, and Culture, Forgiveness, In the News, Insights, Right Side Up | Tagged , , , , | 2 Comments

“You Cannot Come” ~ A Painful Declaration

I could feel the sunlight on my face and even in my semi-conscious state, I knew this wasn’t right. It wasn’t supposed to be daylight. Our adventure was supposed to begin while it was still dark, at some unfamiliar hour like 4:00 a.m. We were going to get dressed and pack our stuff while Mom made snacks for the trip, and the adults began to load the cars. I’d end up in the back seat of one of the cars–stuck in the middle again, of course, but in this case, I wouldn’t care. There’d be no complaints on this day, because we’d be heading off to the beach to go fishing, and not just fishing off the pier with a bunch of people crowding around us. My uncle planned to rent a couple of boats, and we were actually going out on the bay. The thought was mesmerizing.

Dawn of Disappointment ~
Closed eyelids could neither hide the bright morning sunlight streaming in through a crack in the curtain, nor the truth that poured in with it. It was way past 4:00 a.m., and something had gone dreadfully wrong. The house was so quiet I could hear Grandma’s cuckoo clock ticking out in the hallway. It was clear that Continue reading

Posted in Faith, Family, and Culture, Forgiveness, Insights, Right Side Up | Tagged , , , , , | 12 Comments

Sanctity of Life ~ and Archie Bunker’s Chair

Remember Archie Bunker’s chair? Those of us who recall the award-winning TV series, “All in the Family,” and its iconic lead character are immediately aware that a piece of rather plain furniture had its own starring role in the sitcom that ran from 1971 through 1979. The chair was Archie’s personal, private, no-one-else-allowed place to sit, and his lack of tolerance for anyone else sitting in it was obvious. His physical and emotional reactions whenever anyone else had the audacity to violate that special space added Continue reading

Posted in Faith and Politics, Faith, Family, and Culture, In the News, Insights, Marriage and Family, Right Side Up, Wake Up Calls | Tagged , , , , , | 8 Comments

How about Some Five-Star Investing for 2018?

I’ve probably shared the story at some point about my first lesson in reasons not to gamble. I was ten or eleven years old, and my day-to-day relationship with my older brother and step-brother was, let’s just say, not the most positive thing in my life. They viewed me with about the same level of optimistic joy that attended waking up to find that a new zit had developed on their face overnight. It was actually a little worse than that because at least the zit would go away in a few days.

A Bull Market Possibility ~
Other than ensuring that they never had to wonder who to blame when things went wrong, I offered little possibility of “benefit” to them–until they got hold of a deck of cards and learned to play poker. Suddenly my potential for profitability went Continue reading

Posted in In the News, Insights, New Year's, Right Side Up | Tagged , , , , , , , | 5 Comments