Tuesday, May 31, 2016

Skip a Rope #T

The attitudes and behaviors in the home influence and shape the beliefs and outlooks of the young who are raised in the home.  This is a hard yet irrefutable truth that many would prefer to deny.

Consider this.  The child exposed to violence in the household, the child who hears defamatory speech has no choice but to be influenced by these.  Either he will adopt the thinking and behaviors exhibited by his parents, or he will rebel against them and choose another path.  Either way, the home influence is powerful.

Historical flashback.  The late 1960s contained many strands of ugly threads in the fabric of our society.  It was the era of Viet Nam.  It was a period of intense struggle for racial equality, equality to be desired, but ugliness in the resistance to it was evident all too frequently.

While the causes and the skirmishes may manifest along somewhat different lines, in many ways the society of today is little different.  The fabric we are weaving is yet far from perfect.
November, 1967.  A young country singer, Henson Cargill, released a recording entitled "Skip a Rope."  It hit number one on the country charts where it stayed for eight weeks.  It also clocked number twenty-five on the pop charts.  The song was eventually covered by a plethora of artists including such powerhouse singers as Bobby Bare and George Jones.

In spite of its popularity and tremendous sales, the lyrics were controversial; controversial because they spoke truth and many there were who did not want to hear the truth, nor did they want it spoken.  (Does this sound familiar?)

You may readily find Cargill's rendition on YouTube.  I have chosen to reproduce the lyrics here so you might ponder them.

Skip a Rope
by Joe South, as sung by Henson Cargill

Oh, listen to the children while they play,
Now ain't it kinda funny what the children say,
Skip a rope.

Daddy hates mommy, mommy hates dad,
Last night you shoulda heard the fight they had,
Gave little sister another bad dream,
She woke us all up with a terrible scream.
Skip a rope, skip a rope

Cheat on your taxes, don't be a fool,
Now what was that they said about a Golden Rule?
Never mind the rules, just play to win,
And hate your neighbor for the shade of his skin.
Skip a rope, skip a rope.

Stab 'em in the back, that's the name of the game,
And mommy and daddy are who's to blame.
Skip a rope, skip a rope,

Just listen to your children while they play,
It's really not very funny, what the children say,
Skip a rope, skip a rope.

Sunday, May 29, 2016

Peace in Jesus

Scripture in both Testaments seems to me to indicate that while God is the creator and sustainer of all things He is not Santa Claus. 

The vaunted Wise Man who penned Ecclesiastes put it this way:   "I returned, and saw under the sun, that the race is not to the swift, nor the battle to the strong, neither yet bread to the wise, nor yet riches to men of understanding, nor yet favor to men of skill; but time and chance happens to them all." (9:11)

The wisest of all men, Jesus the Christ, gave us these words recorded by Matthew: "That ye may be the children of your Father which is in heaven: for he makes his sun to rise on the evil and on the good, and sends rain on the just and on the unjust." (5:45)

I do not wish to engage in any disputation with the good people who adhere to the "Name it and claim it" theology that is espoused from many pulpits today, but I believe our petitions must be centered in God's will and design.  Then why do we pray?  It is praise, honor and adoration to our heavenly Father; it is communion and communication with God.  As we pray we will find God's will revealed for us in our circumstances.

Then, one might ask, what of Jesus's words "Ask and you shall receive"?  Listen further to his words:
" These things I have spoken unto you, that in me ye might have peace. In the world ye shall have tribulation: but be of good cheer; I have overcome the world."  (John 16:33)

The key:  Peace in Jesus Christ as we pass through this world of tribulation on our way to the Heavenly Kingdom!  Hallelujah!

Friday, May 27, 2016

Piney Time in Indiany

We know with almost 100% certainty that the pineys will bloom for Memorial Day.  Trust me, I never heard these beauties called "pineys" until I moved to Indiana.  And yes, I know how to spell "peonies."  And I fancy that I know how to pronounce it, too.  But you know what they say about behavior while in Rome.

The dianthus (dianthuses? dianthi?)* welcome you at the rear entrance

*According to both Word Hippo and The Oxford Dictionary, the correct plural form is "dianthuses."

Thursday, May 26, 2016

Need a nice place for your retail business?

The venue for Sunday's party was this building in Frankfort.

History would doubtless suggest that this facility was once known as the Bankable Building.  Bankable, if I am not mistaken, was a cigar brand.

The locals know the building as the National Cigar Company, the home of El Verso Cigars.  Cigars were rolled here for 96 years.  At times in its history, the company employed up to 150 people here.  When they closed the doors in March 2015 seventeen employees lost their jobs.  Federal taxes were cited by the owners as a principal factor in the decision to close.

There now remains but one cigar factory in the United States.  It is located in Tampa, Florida.

This building was recently purchased by BBBH's granddaughter and her husband, Crystal and Chris Reichert.  They are making plans to develop a group of boutiques, artisans, and cafes to occupy the acre of floor space available.

The listing agent named here is BBBH's d.i.l.

Wednesday, May 25, 2016

Three Good Days

Day 1.  Sunday last we were blessed to be able to attend morning worship service.  After church we went home where BBBH heated the tamale pie in the oven, then we drove to Frankfort for a family party.

Most of the people seen in these pix are either children or grandchildren and in many cases great grandchildren of BBBH.  The occasion: Granddaughter Michelle, her husband David and their children Mikayla and Lucas were visiting from their home in Germany.

Day 2.  Monday we were blessed with a visit from my sister Vee and her husband Elvin who came all the way from Kansas.  They arrived about 10:30 and stayed until sunset.  Eating of good food and visiting made up most of the day and of course there was not enough time to touch on all the things we wanted to catch up on.

Day 3.  I have suffered for weeks with swelling and pain in the left eye.  Tuesday another visit to the ophthalmologist resulted in the agreement to go with the surgery (DSAEK) which should relieve the pain and likely will restore vision to the eye.  Procedure is scheduled for June 8.  I am not wishing my life away, but it cannot come too soon!

Monday, May 23, 2016

The Deaths of Barrow and Parker

On this date in 1934 in Bienville Parish, Louisiana bank robbers and murderers Bonnie Elizabeth Parker and Clyde Chestnut Barrow died in a bullet-riddled 1934 Ford.

There is much information on the internet about the lives and crime sprees of these people.  I even dared to write a fictional story based on a possible escapade of the gang.  You may find it here.

Wednesday, May 18, 2016

Annual Visit to the Mounds

 We arrived at our campsite in Mounds State Park and had just set up, a task I completed by standing on the concrete pad visiting with a friend I hadn't seen in some time.  A tiny neon streak flashed across our line of sight, and looking down we saw an iridescent creature scooting along the surface of the pad.  We were able to identify it as a wee neon green anteater, for it was scooping up tiny ants!  Now understand that this critter was less than half inch in length, then I will show you a blowup of the picture for a bit of detail.

 Cicindela sexguttata, aka six spotted green tiger beetle.
Interesting, no?  I had noticed the clover in the picture, but had not espied the mushroom or the lichen until I made this enlargement.

Grace, this is the only picture we have of the people and it mostly shows Richard delivering an inspirational message on Monday evening.  Very entertaining and more to the point, edifying.
Photography stymied by lack of preparation.  I had actually thought to bring the charging cord for the camera, yet went off without it and, you guessed it, the battery ran down.

Well, just as batteries require recharging, so do our spirits and thankfully the little outing helped  energize us anew, although from a physical standpoint things could get better.  We came home Wednesday because BBBH has an appointment with nephrologist in the morning.

Tuesday, May 17, 2016

Sunday, May 15, 2016

Move Along Now

Many scoffers deride those who pray.  “God does not answer prayer.  Do not think that your petitions will sway the Lord.”

I submit that God does answer prayer.  The answer is sometimes delayed, and it is sometimes “No.”  A case in point is related in the third chapter of Deuteronomy when Moses inveigles the Lord to allow him to enter the Promised Land.  Moses tells of God’s response in these words. 
“ But the Lord was wroth with me for your sakes, and would not hear me: and the Lord said unto me, Let it suffice thee; speak no more unto me of this matter.”

And thus the Lord answered Moses’s prayer not only with “No,” but also with an injunction for Moses to shut up about it.
Do we ever get on a personal hobby horse pleading with God to assist us in seeing an issue come to fruition?  Do we sometimes get a definite “No” from the Lord and yet persist in pestering Him about the issue?  God loves us and knows what is good for us and He will give us the desires of our hearts so long as our hearts are attuned to His will, not our own.

Moses surveys the Promised
 Land from the mountain top.

Saturday, May 14, 2016

From a Year ago Today

Fair Exchange

Verily he shall do the dishes whose spouse prepareth the meal. 
--Duderonomy 3:17
And I still do the dishes after consuming the delicious meals.

Thursday, May 12, 2016

May Flowers

Approaching mid-May, first blooms of the iris, the columbine, and the clematis-- shades of purple.

The variegated dogwood sporting its pink-and-white and sharing a space with its unidentified magenta friend.

Monday, May 9, 2016

Mushrooms in the Springtime

Celebration!  Friday evening the children of BBBH showed up here to honor her for being their mother.  They took her out for dinner.  Unfortunately I was not able to accompany them, but one of the kids brought me pizza!  Visiting went on until some hour past, probably well past, my bedtime.

Sunday afternoon her youngest child, Kent, showed up to take his mother mushroom hunting.  I was invited, but I opted for the comfort of the mattress.

They were not unsuccessful, for they did find mushrooms. (See picture.)  They were looking for the ever-elusive morel, of course, and it eluded them.

Scientific identification:  some sort of fungus on a stick.

Sunday, May 8, 2016

Trust in God

Jeremiah 17: Thus saith the Lord; Cursed be the man that trusts in man, and makes flesh his arm, and whose heart departs from the Lord.
For he shall be like the shrub in the desert, and shall not see when good comes; but shall inhabit the parched places in the wilderness, in a salt land and not inhabited.
Blessed is the man that trusts in the Lord, and whose hope the Lord is.
For he shall be as a tree planted by the waters, and that spreads out her roots by the river, and shall not see when heat comes, but her leaf shall be green; and shall not be careful in the year of drought, neither shall cease from yielding fruit.
The heart is deceitful above all things, and desperately wicked: who can know it?
10 I the Lord search the heart, I try the reins, even to give every man according to his ways, and according to the fruit of his doings.

Saturday, May 7, 2016


Allium schoenoprasum

Friday, May 6, 2016

Hopes Dashed

A few days ago I expressed the hope that the political phone calls would abate for awhile.  No such luck.  Less than three days after the polls closed



"Hi, I'm Eric and I am calling on behalf of Governor Pence's campaign.  May I ask you a few questions about the November election?"

"No, you may not."


Wednesday, May 4, 2016

The Way We Were

Five Years Ago.

Years past and today. . .

That dogwood tree was a stick when I moved into that house 35 years ago.  It still prospers!

Tuesday, May 3, 2016

Primary Day. Finally

 I am running for Congress because I am a businessman, not a politician, [but I want to be a politician above all else so I am spending thousands of dollars, OPM, for these glitzy ads].  I am Trey and I approved this message.

It is Primary Election Day in Indiana.The good news is that the spate of bad political advertising and dinner-time robocalls may abate-- for a while.  The bad news is someone is going to prevail at the polls.

Well, "we" are going to take back Washington, or the Country, or perhaps the promises we've made.

Say, who "gave away" Washington in the first place, or who took it away?

Indiana has an "open primary" which I personally find  to be an abomination.  Sign your name and mark "R" or "D".  Pick a different party next primary if you so desire.  What sort of party politics is that?  Ticks me off.

Well, the state of the state and the nation, not to mention the local scene, ticks me off anyway.

Have to get up and go to the polls.  Politics truly do make strange bed-fellows.   I probably will be casting my vote for the darling of the millennials, though they are making the choice for the wrong reasons.  My motives are pure.  Purely intended to throw a wrench into the works.

 Obstructionism:  Hope for the nation.

RR is reputed to have said  that the ten scariest words in the English language are, "I'm from the government and I'm here to help you."

Perhaps a more accurate statement would be, "I'm from the government and I'm here to help myself."

Monday, May 2, 2016

Plum Pretty

The plum tree bringeth forth flowers yet produceth no fruit.

These are among the loveliest blossoms of all the flowering
trees in our yard.  Yet the tree is barren.  It was specifically
"designed" to provide spring color without the bother of a
messy fruit later on.

When the bloom is gone the tree will stand there by the
entryway, all red-faced as though apologizing for its lack
of produce.