Monday, July 31, 2017

my July 30 sermon

The Little Things (St. Andrew's, Northford)

You've heard people say, I know you have, and have probably said yourselves, "it's the little things that matter."

A mustard seed and yeast. "Little things" by any reckoning, and yet, it today's gospel lesson we learn how much indeed they matter.

Finally, after several weeks of readings, Matthew's Jesus really tells some parables! If you've been here you've heard me complaining that the 'parable' of the sower and the 'parable' of the seeds haven't been parables at all, but allegories that Jesus explained to his closest followers. An allegory is a story where everything in the story stand for something else and has to be explained.

A parable, on the other hand, as the name indicates in Greek: para-ballein--means to 'throw out together". A parable is a simple story with one 'point', one meaning and can't be explained any more than you can explain a joke. I imagine you've tried to explain a joke to someone who didn't get it. That didn't go to well, did it? Parables and jokes--people either 'get it' or they don't.

So today, Matthew's Jesus gives us two remarkable parables--the mustard seed and the leaven (or as we usually call it, 'yeast').

"Little things" that not only 'count' or 'matter', but make all the difference in the world...that reveal to us, if we 'get it', the very nature of the Kingdom of God. What could 'matter' more than that?

I went down to our spice drawer after I read this gospel earlier this week, and found a container of mustard seeds. And they are tiny! They are about a quarter of the size of a peppercorn and peppercorns are small enough. And yet Matthew's Jesus tells us they will grow into a shrub, a tree, so large that the birds of the air will nest there. And that's what the Kingdom of Heaven is like....

The Kingdom is like a tiny seed.

Then there's yeast. I used too make all our bread for several years. I don't even know why I stopped but I did. The yeast I used came in little packets that weren't nearly full. The grains of yeast wouldn't fill the palm of your hand. Yet, when mixed with several cups of flour and some water, the whole mixture would swell and expand and grow.

The Kingdom is like that. Just a little yeast leavens the whole loaf.

Little things matter.

It pains me to say it, but we live in the most divided culture in my memory. We are divided by walls of race and class and nationality and religion in ways that frighten me to the core. We have become 'tribes' not 'one nation under God'.

Maybe we need to start back at 'the little things' to find our way forward, to find a new unity.

There was a bumper sticker I don't see much anymore that says "Practice Random Acts of Kindness". That's the kind of 'little thing' I'm talking about--small kindnesses, small appreciations, small admiration's, small moments of forgiveness.

Smile at the clerk who checks you out in the grocery store. Ask the guy in the gas station how his day is going. Make eye contact with people different from you and smile. Say 'I love you' more each day. Listen to someone you disagree with rather than arguing or walking away. Nod and say hello to people on the street. Get your eyes off your smart phone and look at the people around you.

I know some people don't like 'political correctness'--but I do. It keeps people from saying things they shouldn't say. Keeping quiet is a little thing that makes a big difference in life. Saying things out loud give them a life of their own. Keeping quiet--knowing not to say it--let's inappropriate things wither away. Thank God!

And I know this: when the White House 'communications director' can give an interview with a major national publication and use language so vile and insulting that even a 12 year old should know better, 'political correctness' needs to come back from the intensive care unit it's in....I'm not even sure anymore that the satirical things said about the President should be said out loud. I laugh, but those things divide us further.

The Kingdom is like little things.

We need to get back to the 'little things' of civil and polite and mutually respectful life before we can fix the 'big things' that divide us.

We need to look at someone and whisper to ourselves, "that too is a child of God", even when we don't agree with them or look like them or even like them.

If we simply admitted that every face we see is the face of a child of God, can you even begin to imagine what a difference that would make in our nation and in the world? Such a little thing--mustard seed sized--could bring in the Kingdom in some profound way....

And our job--like the job of the mustard seed, like the job of the yeast--is to be the 'little thing' that calls forth God's Kingdom. Just that. That and nothing more. Try it for a week and see how the world begins to shift in your life....Amen

Saturday, July 29, 2017


I actually wish I knew how to can things.

My mother was a terrible cook but she was the queen of canning! She canned everything from beans to berries and made jelly and jam and canned that. I can still taste her canned tomatoes even though she never learned to make tomato sauce. Those canned tomatoes in Bern's hand would make a sauce worth kissing your fingers for.

All the fresh stuff this time of year reminds me of what a steamy mess our kitchen would be in late summer. My dad had a really huge garden above my Grandmaw Jones' house when I was growing up and a good sized one after I left for school and my parents moved to Princeton. A lot of folks in southern West Virginia had vegetables and a lot of those people canned stuff.

In my family nobody brought wine as a gift on a visit--the Jones' were mostly Pilgrim Holiness tee-totalers (except for Aunt Georgia, who liked a drink) and the Bradley's never bothered with beer or wine--straight to the hard stuff for them. But when people visited they would bring canned stuff as a gift.

We always had a whole cabinet full of the stuff Mom canned and people gave us. All winter we ate like it was August or September and the vines were full.

When I'm buying something canned in the store, I look to find it in glass not metal. I think stuff canned in glass is just so much better. Maybe that's because I grew up around so many Bell Jars....

(Once, when I was a teen, I ate a peach out of the bottom of a Bell Jar full of moonshine. I couldn't see straight for two days. Jars are good for lots of things....)

Thursday, July 27, 2017

Just loving the cool....

I haven't been writing here much lately. Part of it is that I'm trying not to get to riled up about all the nonsense out of Washington. But part of it is that I'm just loving the cool weather.

We've slept with windows open two nights now and will tonight at well, here at the end of July. The last few days have felt like early spring or mid-fall, not deep summer.

The dog has even been willing to be outside on the deck with me for more than a few moments.

Yesterday, I was on the bed reading a book Sherlock Holmes' Daughter (I recommend it if  you like things Sherlockian) and had to get a blanket to keep from being chilly. How often does that happen in July?

Another thing I recommend, go to Youtube and search for The Marconi Group and their song/music called "Weightless". I can tell  you if you listen to the 8 minute or 10 minute version (there is a 10 hour version I've never tried) it will lower your blood pressure and slow your heart rate and make you feel like you just had a wonderful nap. Really. It was written in consultation with music therapists and designed to s l o w  y o u  d o w n .

I listen to it at least once a week and watch the video which is rather hypnotic.

Here in Trump-world we need all the good books and mood altering music we can find.

At least I do....

Monday, July 24, 2017

Sometimes I just sits...

I  used to have a poster on the wall of my office at St. Paul's in New Haven with a drawing of a rocking chair and the words: "Sometimes I sits and thinks. And sometimes I just sits...."

That's where I am tonight, just sitting, not much to say.

I could tell you about Eleanor and Tim and Mimi's visit--but I'd just bore you with proud grandfather and even prouder father and father-in-law stuff.

I could whine and complain about He who cannot be named and all the nonsense in Washington that is making the US irrelevant in many international ways and challenging the very meaning of the Constitution. But I do that enough and there's always--unfortunately--times to do that.

I could tell you about some of the amazing books I've read this week--but go to your local library and find them yourselves.

I could pontificate on how the institutional Church doesn't trust lay people enough and is entirely too 'clerical' but most of you wouldn't necessarily want to know about all that and how 'un-clerical' I've become in my retirement.....

I could write about our beloved dog, Bela, who is 12 and has, we think, doggie dementia. But I recall something about that in an earlier post and I really want to mourn for him in private right now.

The rain and the wondrous cool today after days on end of heat and humidity--I could parse that into a post. But, if you're in Connecticut you know about it and if you're somewhere where it's not 55 degrees on July 24 I don't want to make you feel bad.

Sometimes I sits and thinks and writes a post....

Tonight is one of the sometimes I just sits.....

Friday, July 21, 2017

ok, people looked at this

Half a dozen folks viewed this post today for reasons I don't know. But I remember it vividly and will share it again.

Friday, November 16, 2012

His name was Ben

I officiated at a funeral today. That's not a new experience for me. In my 21 years at St. John's in Waterbury, I averaged a tad over 40 funerals a year. All told, I'm closing in on 1000 funerals. Not the kind of achievement you set out to accomplish....Yet, I am honored and humbled each time I'm involved in a funeral, no matter the circumstances. I've told the 30+ seminarians I've supervised and mentored that the most important things they'll ever do as priests is funerals.

I mean that. And I am privileged to have been a part of so many--for one thing, I'll never say dumb shit like "he's in a better place" or "God wanted her home....". I'm reliable for not saying dumb shit because I have no words at all to say in the face of death. I just sit with the survivors, help them plan the service and hold them if they want to be held.

Ben's mother called me yesterday--we've talked a lot since Saturday when Ben died in a horrendous accident while working on the family's property in New Hampshire--and she said "I feel out of control!" I told her--which is the limit of my conversation with people who have lost someone they love like a rock, "you are out of control. You are ultimately out of control." I wondered if I had tread too near the edge, but she sighed and said, "I am out of control. I have to give up being in control."

Oh, yes, beloved, when people die there is no 'control' to be in control of. When people die, a dear friend of mine wrote over 40 years ago (where does the time go?) when a friend of hers died in Viet  Nam, "it's like a bird flying into a window on a chill morning....."

Fix that, if you can.

You can't, give it up, no control/no control/no control....

In that approaching 1000 funerals, I've never be a part of one quite like Ben's.

He was only 19 when he died. Wednesday, the day before his funeral, he would have been 20. Imagine what that day was like for his parents---no, don't, you CAN'T imagine it and you shouldn't try. You just shouldn't. You and I cannot for a moment imagine what that was like unless you too have lost a child to death. And if you have done that, don't try to imagine because it would be too painful....

Anyway, I was going to the funeral home Wednesday night to pray the prayers for a Vigil with the family. I was to be there at 4:45 but a wreck in Middletown got me redirected and I didn't get there until 5:05. When I arrived there were several hundred people in line to speak to the family. I was carrying a Book of Common Prayer, which serves as my calling card since I haven't worn a clerical collar for decade or more, so people let me cut line. I told the family it was nonsense to try to do the prayers and told them we'd meet in the morning.

The service was at Holy Trinity in Middletown, thanks to their generosity, because St. James in Higganum wouldn't have held the crowd. St. James can seat 80 or so, packed in, and nearly 400 people showed up for the funeral.

At huge funerals like this, often only a few people receiver communion. But I ran through over 350 wafers as a disc of Ben's favorite music played. That and the fact that most everyone at the rail had wet eyes if not tears running down their faces, I realized this funeral was in the top 5% of all the funerals I have done for authentic grief.

Ben's aunt, who is a pediatrician, talked about how special he was and handed out stickers that said, "WWBFD?"--what would Ben Foisie do?

I never met him, but I do think, after all I heard and was told about him, that was a reasonable question. One to ponder. He was so authentic, sweet, accepting, loving, honest--'special', indeed--that trying to live as he would have lived had he been able to--might be a superlative way to live.

Altogether, a remarkable burial office. Altogether something that made me better, stronger, kinder, more open.

Just the gift that death should give. If we are only open to the giving....

Wednesday, July 19, 2017


Growing up, I had lots of family. I had 14 Jones first cousins and 4 Bradley first cousins, plus 12 aunts and uncles and Mammaw Jones.

Having moved around like I have, I lost contact with most of my cousins---all of whom were older than me. And, as time will do, all my aunts and uncles died off, Aunt Elsie Ours, my mother's youngest sister just last year at 92 was the last to die.

I'm an only child and Bern had a brother and sister who never married or had children. So, Josh and Mimi have no first cousins. Bern's sister died and her brother, Fr. Dan, is coming to visit on Friday.

Dan was a P.hd. psychologist  who taught at Temple University and when his parents died decided he should be a Roman Catholic priest. He has a church in Wellsburg, WV, which is in that northern panhandle of the state that pokes up into Pennsylvania. He is closer to Pittsburgh than to any of the few major cities of WV.

He's never met granddaughter #4, Ellie McCartney. So Tim and Mimi and Ellie are coming up on Saturday to meet Uncle Danny.

Our tribe is small. Two children, 4 granddaughters, uncle Danny and Bern and me.

It will be good to be 'family' for a day or two.

Tuesday, July 18, 2017

Partner! Lordy, Lordy!

My son, Josh, today was made a partner in his law firm of Rosenberg, Martin and Greenberg, one of the largest and most prestigious firms in Baltimore. He went to Brooklyn School of Law, where he met his wife, Cathy Chen, who is a prosecutor for the City of Baltimore.

He does tax and bankruptcy law--his unit kept R,M,G above water during the recession.

I am sure he is super good at what he does. And now that is proven.

I just looked at the web page for R/M/G and saw that they have a lot of women lawyers and several lawyers of color. I've never looked before. Glad I did. Makes my feel even better about my son, The Partner.

Josh is 41 years old, 42 soon, in August. I've never really worried about him. He is frighteningly smart--always has been--and though a little loudly extroverted, a gentle and caring man.

His three daughters--Morgan and Emma (11) and Tegan (8) are brilliant and wonderful. Emma is more outgoing than her two sisters but all are remarkably friendly and kind.

Cathy Chen is beautiful and smart as well.

God, I love my kids and all that came from them, babies that they were once upon a time.

Law partner at 41--not shabby....not shabby at all.

Sunday, July 16, 2017

Showing some restraint....

It's been over 2 weeks since I've mentioned He Who Should Not Be Named (our President,by his other title) in a post.

That shows, given the 24 hour cycle of craziness out of 1600 Pennsylvania Ave., more restraint than I'm usually up to showing.

I'm, not even going to 'go off' on He Who Should Not Be Named, Jr. He doesn't need anyone to air his dirty laundry...he can handle that himself quite nicely.

Neither will I discuss Darth Vader (Steve Bannon in drag) or Pee Wee Herman (Jerad Kushner's look-alike). I leave that to those less dignified and restrained than I.

Nor will I demean either Kelly Ann (who should be demeaned just on principle!) nor Sarah Huckabee whatever though there isn't a bus that should be tarnished by her being thrown under it.

No, all I want to do is tell you about a poll I read today.

It's an NBC/Wall Street Journal poll just out that covers 439 counties in 16 states that either switched from Obama in 2012 to Trump in 2016 OR Trump won more handily than did Mitt Romney. Most of those counties went for Trump by 15-20 points in the election. Now his approval rating is only 50% in those counties that voted for him by 65-35 in most cases.

The very people who elected him are the very ones who, to this point, everything he does (especially around the environment, the rich and health care) has mitigated against.

Amazing, isn't it, how folks can (just like scripture tells us) 'believe a lie and be damned....'

Alas and alack, 'forgotten Americans', he's forgotten you again already....

Wednesday, July 12, 2017

I always check

I always check on what people are reading on Under the Castor Oil Tree. I noticed today that several people had read a post from 2010. So I read it. And almost wept. Dogs make me weepy. And Luke, the dog, truly did.

Thought I'd share it with you again.

Saturday, May 1, 2010


Luke Plunski--Luke the dog--died today.

He was Michael's dog first...saved Mike's life once and made Mike's life so much finer, brighter, happier. Then, after Michael died Luke became JoAnn's dog, saved her life in a different way, making it possible to move on after her son's death.

I'll never forget how someone with great good sense allowed Luke to be in Michael's hospital room during his last illness--even in Intensive Care. Mike had lost both his legs to his disease and Luke was his legs for him. Mike didn't take up the whole bed, so Luke would lay where Mike's legs should have been had the world been kinder. Sometimes a medical person would come in and be horrified to see a dog in a hospital bed. Luke would just look at them with those endlessly deep brown eyes and most of the time, the person would just melt.

Luke made you melt. He was a Golden Retriever and a beauty of one. How could you resist that look that said--"I'm laying here where I belong, next to my human...."

Luke became a therapy dog after Michael died and brought joy to hundreds and hundreds of people in hospitals and nursing homes. He was never assertive, always patient, always waiting for the human to make the first advance. And as gentle as a spring breeze, as sweet as the smell of honeysuckle, as healing as magic chicken soup.

He always came up to communion with Jo, mostly because he knew his job was to be near her always and he did his job to perfection. And one day, his great head leaning against the altar rail, I simply gave him communion--just a wafer like everyone else. After that, he was my great, good friend. If I'd forget and someone else gave out the bread on that side of the altar rail, I'd glace over and he'd be looking at me with those eyes that made me melt and I'd feel like I'd been rude to the Christ Child...which isn't far from true. Luke was about as Christ-like as any creature I've known.

I suppose some people might have objected to my giving him communion--but I never asked and, most likely, wouldn't have cared. It was only right and proper and in good order.

When Jo and Luke got into the library on Sunday mornings for the adult forum--they were there almost every week for years--he'd want to come greet me. Jo would give him his short little leash which he would carry in his mouth and he'd come to say hello. (He'd also take the chance to roll on the Library rug, but who can blame him for that?) It was one of the highlights of every Sunday, that little lick and rubbing against me.

My grandmother divided the world into two distinct groups "church people" and people who, well, were not 'church people'. I tend to divide the world into 'dog people' and everyone else. Loving a dog is like holding your heart in your hand and feeling it beat for a while. You all know the "DOG"/"GOD" stuff...well, I'm not sure it isn't true.

Lord I will miss him....

Jo held him as he died. I've held dogs as they've died and there is very little more profound and humbling than that. The pain of a dog's death is sharper and cleaner than even the deaths of people you love. I don't know anyone who, when someone they love dies, doesn't have some unfinished business or some guilt or some unanswered questions...mixed up stuff. With a dog, it's just pain. You know they never blamed you for anything, were never disappointed in you, never thought you should change your ways....they simply, purely loved you. Just like you are. Just like that. That's a Dog/God thing--there is no other creature besides a dog who can find that Agape Love, that redemptive Love, that Love that knows no bounds, that love that mimics God's love for each of us.

I weep for Luke tonight...but more for Jo. I know the pain she feels. I've been blessed and privileged and made a better person by the love of dogs....

Monday, July 10, 2017

Soon I will HAVE the picture I wish I had....

I heard from several people about my last post. (Thank you all for reading and responding with images of the Collie and the Lamb.) The first was Mike Miano, my old high-school and college friend. (Mike and I, along with Mike Lawless and Doc Lykins, lived one year at every college boy's wet dream address: 69 Richwood Avenue. I kid you not.)

Several folks sent me pictures of the picture but Charles Dimmick sent me a link to a place where I could buy it. And I did. Just a few days now. I even have a hook all ready beneath the three plaques that are on the right frame of the window directly behind my computer when I can glance up at any time into the trees and sky.

The plaques, from top to bottom, are 1) a rather drunken looking face projecting out of the plaque with  the words "In Vino Veritas" ('in wine, truth'); 2) a small plaque in graved with "SHALOM" ('Peace' in Hebrew, though the Hebrew means so much more than 'peace': it means wholeness, completeness, everything included and in harmony); 3) another plaque with raised letters saying, "VOCATVS atque non VOCATVS Deus aderit", which means, in translation, "Summoned or not Summoned, God is present (there)."

Just below that is a hook where something else important to me hung which I doubtless gave to someone, probably the last deacon to work with me, as a priestly ordination gift. I tended over the years, to give gifts to those being ordained of things precious to me rather than something new. I think they 'got it' when I did that.

So my picture of the collie and the lamb will hang there, just at eye level as I type, to remind me that, on whole, I had the kind of childhood everyone, simply everyone, should have--never struck in anger, never shamed or belittled, always kept safe, loved by two large extended families, in a town where everyone knew everyone else, able to roam the mountains until dark most summer days, nurtured and well-educated. It should be like that for all children and as I look at the collie and the lamb I will wish that for all children, truly.

The Left window frame is taken up by (if you are interested) a rather large Native American  Dream Catcher my daughter gave me.. On the top of the window that could go up is my high school yearbook photo and a photo of Bern when she was in her 20's. We grow old, we grow old--and I do need to wear my trousers rolled since the heel of my shoe catches on most of my long pants. I shrink. But there in the window, Bern and I are ageless but young....

The print of the collie and lamb is attributed to either Albrect Schenck or Walter Hunt and is either called "Collie and Lamb" or "Shepherd's Call". No one is quite sure. But if I wanted I could get it on greeting cards. I might just do that someday.

I'm waiting, not too patiently for it. When it comes, I'm off to find a frame....

Friday, July 7, 2017

The picture I wish I had....

I'm still looking at all those black and white photos my cousin sent me from Aunt Elsie's collection. I had a post about them back on June 26, I believe it was.

The one I've been pondering today is of me and my parents. It was taken in our apartment in Anawalt--the place I spent my first 18 years.

(I just realized I have no idea 'who' took the photo. It's just me and my mom and dad--our little tribe--in the photo. Who took it?)

There's a date on it--January 1959. I was 11. My mother was 48 and my father 51.

Dad is sitting on 'his' chair--it was red, if I remember correctly. Mom is on the arm to his right and I'm on the arm to his left. Mom is dressed in dark 'work' clothes but with a white, no collar top. Her hair is sort of frizzy--as mine is from time to time--but she is thinner than she is in my memory.

My father is thinner that my memory as well. And, so am I, for that matter. The heavy family I remember wasn't so heavy as I remembered! Actually, we all look kind of average weight. Huh! That's odd.

Dad has on a white dress shirt and dark slacks. His hair hasn't turned a bit gray though my mother has a streak or two. Dad is not smiling--no surprise there--when he did smile it looked fake anyway. Mom has the slight upturned lips I remember from her always. Neither of my parents were prone to laughter. They both had hard lives. But they were always, always gentle with me. That I know and know fair well.

I have a buzz cut--as I had in those days. Ray, down at the barber shop a block from our apartment took about 90 seconds to cut my hair! I have on a long sleeved striped shirt like many of the shirts I remember from my childhood. I was partial to stripes. Now I seldom wear them. Solids for me now that I am almost two decades older than Virgil and Cleo in that photo,

Dad's chair was by the door to the kitchen so, in the photo, you can see into the kitchen and see the coal stove we had there. Our apartment had no central heat so we heated with coal and cooked with coal, mostly. We did have an electric stove as well for important meals. My father NEVER cooked and my mother was only passing fair. I didn't know she couldn't cook when I was 11, obviously.

But here's the thing that haunts me: behind my head, on the wall in the photo is a picture I wish I had. It was always there in my childhood. Not always where it is in this photo but somewhere in our apartment and then in my parents' house in Princeton. (When I went to college they bought a real house in a much larger town 30 miles and two mountains away from Anawalt.)

In the picture there is a young sheep lying still in the snow and above the lamb is a collie, snout up in the air, calling for help.

I wish I had that picture. I would hang it in the office where I'm typing this. I would look at it every day and remember my childhood.

That picture haunts me. I long to have it. It was omni-present in my young life. I just wish I had it in my latter years. Really.

Thursday, July 6, 2017

Already, two months early, I ponder...

I write Bern a poem for each of our anniversaries. I don't know when it started--a decade or more ago, I'm sure. Our anniversary--#47 this September 5--will cause me to ponder a great deal. I sometimes do stuff like have each line begin with the letters of the alphabet that spell out the number. This year would be F-O-R-T-Y-S-E-V-E-N--like that.

I have time to ponder and write.

Here's last's years 'almost' poem.

The Poem I Can’t Write

For days now I’ve been trying
to write a poem that just won’t come.
It’s for our anniversary and about my love,
so it should flow out without any effort,
since I love you so very much.

But the poem is hiding from me,
peeking at me from around the corner,
avoiding me at all cost, it seems.
Page after page I throw away
(or, more accurately, erase from my computer).

Forty-six years of marriage (and years before that)
of loving you—the words should pour out,
full of passion and wonder and amazement.

This time I realized something,
my love for you isn’t something ‘out there’,
that I can examine, reflect on, put into words.
That love is in those letters in the attic.
That love has altered, changed, become incarnate.

The love I feel for you is, quite simply, me.
I am my love for you. It is my very ‘being’
That cannot be captured and enclosed in words.
That is ‘who I am’. So, I am your poem.
This poem is ‘me’, my very being, the “I” I call myself.
I am yours. Your anniversary poem….

September 5, 2016

Monday, July 3, 2017

trumping Trump

OK, you already know about it but I'm going to say it again: the state of New Jersey hasn't passed a budget and shut down certain parts of the government, including the tourist centers, the state beaches and vital statistics. So, don't plan to find out what to do in New Jersey or go to a public beach or get a birth certificate over the 4th of July holiday.

But Gov. Chis Christie and his extended family took a state helicopter to a state owned house on a state public beach so he and his family could enjoy the sun and waves and breezes that no one else in New Jersey could because THE BEACH WAS CLOSED!!!

The shear arrogance and hypocrisy of a governor going somewhere that was closed to the rest of the citizens of his state 'on his watch' is breath-taking. And his explanation is only better--he had said he was going there with his family before the state shut-down.

"So the press found out a politician was where he said he would be with who he said he would be with," Christie said on (where else) Fox News, "I'm sure they'll get a Pulitzer for that....."

Take 3 deep breaths and think of the place you love most in the world (as long as it's not a state beach or park in New Jersey) and then lean into his answer to why he, the frigging Governor, was somewhere he, as Governor, said no other tax paying citizen of his state could be this weekend.

Probably more deep breaths and happy thoughts are necessary....

Even the Republican who is going to run to replace him as governor of New Jersey was appalled by the whole thing.

Pity Christie doesn't tweet (that I know of).

He might give Trump a run for his money.....

Sunday, July 2, 2017

Good News and Bad News

The good news is that, even with my bum knees, I can run if I have to.

The bad news is that this afternoon, I had to run.

Bad Dog Bela, 12 and hating the heat with a passion, was supposedly on our afternoon walk around the neighborhood.  In actuality, what he was doing was turning around and trying to get me to turn around and go home and what I was doing was mostly dragging him. On this afternoon's walk/drag down Cornwall Avenue and down the driveway to the Congregational Church's parking lot, he turned around so much that he got his choke collar hopelessly tangled to the point it was choking him all the time and I had to take it off to untangle it.

When I took it off, he bolted back toward Cornwall Avenue and I had to run about 50 yards before I caught him, leaving behind the cane the physical therapist tells me not to be embarrassed to use if my knee is sore. I did two church services this morning--Higganum at 9 and Killingworth at 10 and before and after and in between drove for nearly an hour. That much standing and driving had my knee a little stiff so I had my cane for Bela's walk/drag.

I did catch him and got his collar back on and went back for the cane after I was sure I wasn't having a heart attack. The heart attack wouldn't have been from the 50 yard dash but from the fear he'd run out into the road if I didn't catch him and get killed in the light Sunday afternoon traffic.

Bad as he is, Bern loves this dog to death and if I'd let him be killed I might just have gone to Canada rather than face her--which would get me away from Trump at any rate.

He is old and even more stubborn that he's always been. I think, though, that he was as surprised as I was that he could run that far that fast. He panted for about an hour later and is sleeping behind me as I write this.

Lordy, Lordy, I wouldn't trade anything for the joy of having him with us for 12 years. But I didn't need that run today, though it is good to know I can do it if I'm terrified enough....

Saturday, July 1, 2017

Please, dear God, help us....

I won't even try to describe the last few days of our President's and, unfortunately, our lives. You know all about it if you've been semi-conscious. All the stuff about tweets and Morning Joe and CNN. All that stuff. I don't have to tell you about it.

I want my President to be worrying about, well, 'presidential stuff'--foreign affairs, trade, Russia, health care (in a way that matters), the day to day operations of our massive government infrastructure, roads and bridges, inclusion of immigrants into society, safety, just stuff like that as uninteresting and opposite as it may be to what He-Who-Will-Not-Be-Named cares about.

When our children, Josh and Mimi, were 10 years old, there is no way I would have entrusted them with their day-to-day life without my guidance and the guidance of Bern.

The reason for that is, they would have done the kind of stuff the President does.

And what amazes me most is that, even though people (even Republicans) object to his 10 year old bully ('you called me that I'll call you that!!) behavior, no one is saying 'FRIGING ENOUGH ALREADY!!!!! IT STOPS HERE AND IT STOPS NOW!!!! GO AWAY AND DON'T COME BACK!!!!

Will no one but God save us?

Dear God, please save us......

(By the way, there is very little of true Presidential substance that can be said in 144 characters. Try to put the Gettysburg Address into a tweet.... )

Blog Archive

About Me

some ponderings by an aging white man who is an Episcopal priest in Connecticut. Now retired but still working and still wondering what it all means...all of it.