Friday, February 29, 2008


Friday past-due fundy undo fun day

Hello. My name is ER. I'm a fundamentalholic. And I need a new "desire chip" -- 'cause I sure tied one on last night.

Hoo boy. I went into total post-traumatic fundamentalist diabetic shock at EL's Fundy Candy Store. (EL sells even stronger fundy candy than Neil!) Blech!

See this?


Yep. It's my ass. I showed it over there. Even ol' fellow traveler Dan, at Payne Hollow felt a need to ask me to cool it. :-)

Frederick Buechner (bless you, GKS, for introducing me to him) is helping me get that terrible taste out of my mouth today:

... Jesus said, "I am the way, and the truth, and the life; no one comes to the Father, but by me" (John 14:6). He didn't say that any particular ethic, doctrine, or religion was the way, the truth, and the life. He said that he was. He didn't say that it was by believing or doing anything in particular that you could "come to the Father." He said that it was only by him -- by living, participating in, being caught up by, the way of life that he embodied, that was his way.

Thus it is possible to be on Christ's way and with his mark upon you without ever having heard of Christ, and for that reason to be on your way to God though maybe you don't even believe in God.

A Christian is one who is on the way, though not necessarily very far along it, and who has at least some dim and half-baked idea of whom to thank. ...

AND ...

We are all of us judged every day. We are judged by the face that looks back at us from the bathroom mirror. We are judged by the faces of the people we love and by the faces and lives of our children and by our dreams. Each day finds us at the junction of many roads, and we are judged as much by the roads we have not taken as by the roads we have.

The New Testament proclaims that at some unforeseeable time in the future God will ring down the final curtain on history, and there will come a Day on which all our days and all the judgments upon us and all our judgments upon each other will themselves be judged. The judge will be Christ. In other words, the one who judges us most finally will be the one who loves us most fully.

Romantic love is blind to everything except what is lovable and lovely, but Christ's love sees us with terrible clarity and sees us whole. Christ's love so wishes our joy that it is ruthless against everything in us that diminishes our joy. The worst sentence Love can pass is that we behold the suffering which Love has endured for our sake, and that is also our acquittal. The justice and mercy of the judge are ultimately one.

(--from Frederick Buechner, Listening to Your Life, George Connor, comp., ed. (San Francisco: HarperSanFrancisco, 1992): 57-58.

Is there any hope for me in ever learning to stay out of the fundy candy stores?


Thursday, February 28, 2008


Citizen McCain? Huckabee question ...

(Rolling eyes).

The McCain-Panama tempest is a 10-YEAR-OLD STORY.

The New York Times is embarrassing itself over where McCain was born.

Here's a more interesting question: If Huckabee was born again overseas, would red-white-and-blue American fundamentalists still consider him a Christian?

I'm just sayin'.


Wednesday, February 27, 2008


and then depression set in


tired of the news. tired of the election.

tired of the christmas tree and stockings still being up.

tired of reading. tired of writing.

tired of being in one place and the rest of my life being scattered over hither and yon.

tired of swinging from one thing looked forward to to the next, because there are always in-between times like this.

tired of the house. tired of thinking about it. tired working on it. tired of planning for it. tired of spending on it.

tired of being busy. tired of being bored.

tired of now. tired of then.

tired of working.

tired of thinking.

tired of feeling.

tired of hoping.

tired of praying.

just. effing. tired.

all of which is to say: blah.

too tired to capitalize ...



Rebel Ridling -- 'a Major League name'

Gotta love the name. And he has a sister by the name of Harli.

We know what he did last summer.

Rebel's official OSU bio site.



And ER exhales

Whew. 47-minute telephone interview with potential employer. "Definitely qualified," she said. Well, yeah!

Said they prefer someone to work on site in California. Of course. It's a boss thing. No matter how "forward thinking" an enterprise is, it's hard to look out into a workplace and not see all your employees, even in the digital information biz.

They're interviewing others all week. Probably won't hear anything until week after next. Fingers crossed, and I keep looking, in the meantime.


Tuesday, February 26, 2008


'Ah so!' Me like-um ribs! Whasssssuuuup!

Dr. ER brought me some of this stuff frfom her last trip. What hoot, this! What political correctness?

So, let's come up with some more totally inappropriate brand names for ethnic condiments and foods! The trick to being offensive is to an equal opportunity offender!

Here are some starters:

"That's So Nice!" white bread.

"Yo Mama!" premixed fried chicken batter.

"Heap Big Piles" instant squash-corn-beans mash.

"Fixin' To" biscuit baking powder.

Carry on, y'all.


Monday, February 25, 2008


My places are out of control

1. How do you people do it? You people who move every couple of years? You people who buy a house, live in it for awhile, then pick up and move again before the paint is even dry on the old place?

Move? I can't even get my head into the concept. I can barely move around IN my home office, for example, let alone think about packing all this crap up and moving it out!

Not that a move is imminent. But I have to get some rewriting done toot sweet, so I CAN dismantle this office and box up everything and put it in storage so I can get some preparation done, so I can then put the house on the market.

Woe. I hate it. It's an absolute and total WRECK.

But I can find dang near any book, or paper, or random pamphlet, pretty fast when I need it -- not because there is any method to the madness but because I'm mad -- bwa ha, ha, ha -- and even if I can't remember all my pin numbers I know that, say, my brittle and yellowed copy of the July 71 issue "Journal of the West" is in on the third shelf, from the top, of the first book shelf on the right when you walk into this room. For example.

Grrrr. I took the afternoon off partly to get started on the rewrite, and all I've got done so far is hoe out an area around my desk and cut a trail to the shelf I am most likely going to need as I progress.

2. Nobody who has lived his whole dang life in Oklahoma and Texas should ever be surprised by anything to do with weather, but -- "surprised" isn't the word I mean. ... Nobody, etc., should get upset with the weather. But dang. It's HOT today.

One of the local news babes this morning, in her chatter with the weatherman, was complaining about all the ice and cold and wet we've had lately. The weatherman said something like; "How 'bout wind and fire? That's what we've got for today."

And he wadn't kiddin'. The wind is sweeping UP the plain and Southwest Oklahoma is bursting into racing flames, I think.

Hoo boy.


Sunday, February 24, 2008



First, Ralph Nader, for all the good he's done, is a loon. I predict he'll get less than 1 percent of the vote this time. Plus, he'll make Obama appear more moderate. Plus, he'll make McCain seem younger.

Now ...

The Prayer of Confession today at church:

Lord of Life, we can become so complacent in our faith, assuming that we know who is an insider and who is an outsider. But our Teacher and Lord continues to break the boundaries which separate us from one another. Help us to hear this ancient conversation with the Samaritan woman at the well as a model for the redemption of creation. For if we overhear it with the heart, we will know that God knows no "outsiders." Amen.

Not even hardshell fundamentalists. Would that they would pray this prayer with their non-fundy brethren!


Saturday, February 23, 2008


Belated Valentine dining

Wow! This place rocks. But it is not for the faint of billfold.

Cascata Ristorante.

I'm a bit embarrassed that I, a professional observer and chronicler, had no clue how cool this place is -- and it's only about 2 miles away, and I drive back in forth in front of it EVERY DAY.



Friday, February 22, 2008


Prayers! Prayers! Holy crap! Prayers, karma, happy-happy thoughts, good vibes and all that stuff!! Por favor!

I made the first cut for a job that is remote: meaning I can do it here (Oklahoma), there (Colorado), or anywhere! Best news I've had this week!

"Woo!" he said, adding, "hoo!"

And now Dr. ER are fixin' to go have a belated Valentine's Day dinner.

--ER (


Friday follies: Guitars and tallywhacks

OK. So, Oklahoma's labor commissioner (allegedly) got drunk and got caught tryin' to sneak off with a guitar he'd swiped from a country singer at a party after a professional bull ridin' in Oklahoma City.

I ain't makin' it up.

Fer my money, that beats the state district judge who finally got whacked for usin' a "penis pump" to pleasure hisself, at the bench, during court sessions, complete with "whooshing" sound, for years.

I ain't makin' that up either.

Any ol' perv in a position power can find a way to get away with gettin' hisself off in the line of duty. Bubba proved that.

But it takes 'nads of steel to try to steal a man's guitar.

What's the weird news of the week in YOUR locale?


Thursday, February 21, 2008


Testing the Democratic spirits

Y'all, I am actively testing my thoughts on the election.

And if this won't knock me off the Obama bandwagon, nothin' will -- in fact there is a strain or two in the (cheesy!) video, and Southern history, in fact, that line up perfectly with my concerns over power and tyranny.

The creator of the video might be appalled. I don't give a damn.

There's nothing conservative about the Republican Party. Conservativism, as Goldwater knew it, and renounced, is dead. And there's nothing "liberal" about wanting corrupt power diffused -- nothing liberal about it but liberty.


Wednesday, February 20, 2008


Write to remain silent

Yesterday in my writing angst -- which, actually, is pretty rare for me -- I made some fundamental writing mistakes.

1. I quit thinking, and started reacting -- to time, other work demanding my attention (I even turned my e-mail off, but that haunted me, so it'll be on today) -- and then I started reacting to my reacting and got totally off track.

"Think" is job No. 1 for a writer. "People can't write because they can't think," H.L. Mencken wrote. And I think he was talking about thinking about the thing itself, not the words. Yesterday, I got tangled up in words and forgot about the thing itself.

2. There's a bit of chicanery in journalistic writing on deadline: You "write around" what you don't know. You set up words and phrases as chicanes to keep the reader from thinking too much about things you can't write any more about. Because of time -- the evil, two-faced bastard -- I don't know some things about what I'm trying to write about. I have to write to remain silent.

Time two-faced? Yes. Because of time that's passed, I've lost some information. Because of time dead ahead, I don't have ... time ... to redo, or do, more research. Since all that was, is, or will be is "now," time is two-faced. Or maybe has multiple personalities. Time is a damn hydra at times like this.

3. "Show, don't tell," editors tell us. Good writers show us. I'm telling you, I was a bad writer yesterday, trying to tell a story rather than show it. I'm out of practice. Most of what I write involves telling, not showing -- it's hard news.

It's a feature story I'm trying to write. To write. To tell. Today, the hell with *that" -- I'm getting out of this story's way, and taking a bunch of words with me. It will show itself. The way I see it now, the story will be about two-thirds as long as I initially thought, and that is always a good thing.


Tuesday, February 19, 2008




(Yes, we can!)



I am on a roll.

(Yes, we can)



I'm gettin' chills.

(Yes, we can)



It's got a ring to it.

(Yes, we can)


My ticket: Obama-McCain

I'm not kidding.

I like Obama's inexperience! I like that he doesn't know what he doesn't know! Good! He's a dreamer. I love that what passes these days for the establishment of the Democratic Party doesn't like him.

I like McCain's curmudgeonliness! I like his life experience. I LOVE that what passes for the establishment of the GOP despises him!

I'd love to see President Obama boldly going where the inexperienced have no fear to go.

I'd love to see McCain become "Grandpa Sam" -- the old fart at the family get-togethers who sits and bitches and says, "Yeah, well, you whipper-snappers! Did ya think of THIS?"

What a balance. It would grab America up by the short hairs.

They might could even LEAD, Obama first, showing respect for McCain's experience and the honor due to him for his military and political service, telling the extremes of both parties to go jump in the Potomac!

Bring it on. Let McCain, as president of the Senate, lock that son-of-a-bitch down until they get it: that there really is a New Day. Let Obama, as president, be president.

By the way: John McCain was channeling the late great Chief Dan George tonight.



Eep, irk, umph, gah, &$@^&$#!!!

I can't stand it. I've been trying to write a story all day that I've been wanting to write since SEPTEMBER, and now it HAS to be done, there's a real deadline, and I've thought about it so dang long it's like doing major invasive surgery to get it out of my head.

Plus my notes are cold. Way cold. That always sucks. Journalist "notes" aren't actually notes -- at least not for someone who's been scribbling them for nigh unto 20 years. They're more like visual clues to a conversation or interview. Shelf life: about 48 hours, 72 hours max. These are more than a week old.

It doesn't help that I screwed up and let myself give a crap about the story! That's always make it worse. So much for detached skepticism and surly professional cynicism. Grrr.

And, in the line of duty, I yelled in the general direction of a friend today, out of frustration over a specific thing, frustration over the story that's coming like cold molasses, and ... well, that's it. I'm sorry, my friend.

The good news is Dr. ER is coming tomorrow, for our belated Valentine's Day. And that means I better get all the yellin' out of my system pronto.


Monday, February 18, 2008


Get a Black Jack Chick Tract Pack Rack!

Goooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooood mornin' Blogdom! Got up wonderin' what to post and this here was in my mailbox. Hoot for the Lord always, and again I say, Hoot!

Check out "Soul Sisters"


Sunday, February 17, 2008


No Map for My Wandering Pilgrim Way

Prayer of Confession today at church:

Lord of Life, change is difficult because we are afraid of the unknown. We feel called by you to leave old ways behind, and to trust that life is a journey, not a destination, but the way ahead is unclear. We understand our identity through work, family and location -- but you have plans for us that call us in new directions, and force us to trust in your grace. Help us, we pray, not to fear the journey, and not to pretend that we know when the journey is over. In the name of Jesus, our Teacher and Lord, we pray, Amen.

I can't wait to tell y'all what I gave up for Lent. I got so much more than I bargained for. But the time isn't right. I want to make sure I stick to the commitment.

The bottom line: I'm ready. Whatever lies ahead, I'm ready. I'm tired of clinging to temporal masquerades of safety and security. Tired of fear. Tired of being in one life with my wife in another.

And I had none of that in mind at the beginning of Lent.

Which is why what started as an offhand remark I made to my big brother at the Pig Out Palace in Henryetta, Okla., of all places, has become part of my daily spiritual discipline and opened mental and emotional doors of mine that I didn't even know were closed. Amazing.

It truly is.

O how sweet to walk in this pilgrim way,
Leaning on the everlasting arms;
O how bright the path grows from day to day,
Leaning on the everlasting arms.

What have I to dread, what have I to fear,
Leaning on the everlasting arms;
I have blessed peace with my Lord so near,
Leaning on the everlasting arms.



Saturday, February 16, 2008


Palpation? Hallucination? Alien-ation?

So, I'm pretty sure I was subjected to a non-physically invasive probe early this morning, between 3 a.m. and 4 a.m., either by aliens or the U.S. government.

I woke up to hear a loud, repetitive, mechanical spinning kind of sound. I couldn't move. And I saw tiny swirly points of light spinning around the room.

It was unsettling but I wadn't a-scared, even though I thought, even as it was going on: Yep, I am being probed, either by aliens or the government.


But what actually might have happened was this: My left inner ear was acting up, this being the ear I lost some hearing in a few winters ago when it got infected. I woke up from REM sleep and experienced sleep paralysis with hypnagogia (the amplified sound and the lights).

Or not.


Friday, February 15, 2008


Just for GKS (snicker): C.S. Lewis sucks




Some Lewisian insight

"Do not confuse Repentance with Disgust: for the one comes from the Landlord and the other from the Enemy."

--The Guide, from "The Pilgrim's Regress," by C.S. Lewis

Some context.

A little more context.



Thursday, February 14, 2008


Valentine's Day, Schmalentine's Day!

Grrrrr. Rowr! What a day!

Lost my dadgum checkbook in this hotel, in Oklahoma City!

Dr. ER, my beloved, is at this hotel, in San Antonio!

Sweetieless! On Sweetie Day! Poop.

So, I'm at this bar, hangin' out with a 10-year-old!


Wednesday, February 13, 2008


Beats all I ever SAW!

OK, since nobody indicated they SAW this, linked to the previous post, I'm puttin' it up front! "Oh, How I Love Jesus" -- by SAW. :-) These are my kind of peeps ...



For the love of Christ -- I get it!

(Continued from "A pair of remarks about breasts and the Lord.)

St. Francis of Assisi, again:

In a vision

I asked for the most intimate experience with the Christ.

No one would believe what happened
in a vision more true than
this world:

sacred chord
pulsated light throughout the universe
as I nursed my own
Lord at my

(from "Love Poems from God: Twelve Sacred Voices from the East and West," Daniel Ladinsky trans, [New York: Penguin Compass, 2002,]55.)

It came to me about 2:30 a.m. Eyes popped open. Eureka. And it's all right there, in what he asked for: "most intimate experience with the Christ."

It's not about Christ getting nourishment, or getting nurturing, or getting love. It's not erotic, neither then nor now. It's certainly not homoerotic. It's not an example of confusion on his part or anything like that.

It's another example, to me, of how with Christ, power and relationships are totally at odds with expectations.

It's about Francis GIVING love intimately, not Christ GETTING love intimately.

I couldn't see that at first for a couple of reasons. Not only am I a man, but I've never even held a baby who was my own! My Bird was 9 when I came along. I have probably held a baby fewer than 10 times my whole life.

Trixie all but spelled it out:

"There is no more intimate or loving connection than that between a mother and baby. And the bond is not necessarily about nourishment, but nurturing and being in that relationship, profoundly close to one another."

But in that I still saw Christ GAINING rather than Francis GIVING -- but at the same time I imagined Francis gaining because, baby or not, we're talking about Christ ... dang it, this is hard to make clear.

Dr. ER saw the imagery as an expression of holy intimacy, too, and I think I totally missed it if she meant Francis was the actor, not the object. Big difference.

So, there I was, lying in bed, laughing, enjoyjng the glimpse of a different way to "love Jesus" -- and it could very well change the way I see Jesus in other people.

People are to be loved not necessarily because they deserve to be loved, or even need to be loved, but because I have a need to love them in order to love God, in order to strengthen the intimacy of my relationship with Christ.


I've been saying lately that if I were to wind up in seminary, or theology school, it would be for academic purposes, to research and write, not to become a minister -- because I don't think I have the ministering gene. People? Eh.

Uncanny timing this epiphany, since I have an appointment to talk to the preacherman this very morning.

I think I might've done saw some of that light, through the initially disturbing image of the baby Jesus suckling at the breasts of St. Francis of Assisi.

(Yes, we can)

Tuesday, February 12, 2008


Oily example of how clueless CNN is

Venezuela declares war on Exxon.

Y'all save yer pennies. Yer gonna need 'em, for gasoline. Me, too!

But ya'll don't know just how dependent on foreign oil the United States is!

We Okies ain't talkin'. Some of us have talked ourselves hoarse about this.

Forgive us for enjoyin' the windfall. DadGUM but the markets can be a bitch -- and we're gonna wake up with this'un for awhile longer.

And some of us ain't gonna let y'all jump ugly on the energy companies for doin' what energy companies do -- change the damned laws.



A pair of remarks on breasts and the Lord

The Christian Century in a recent issue had a cover story on something I'd never heard of in art: the nursing Madonna, a version of which is shown. The aticle is not online yet, sadly.

I must admit the notion startled my sensibilities a little:

In this culture, the female breast is a sex object, not a source of nourishment -- and that's part of what the story was about: how Western culture started changing, way back there, and made the breast a "naughty" thing that should always be covered in public -- which, of course, was the first step toward making it a thing to be desired.

So, imagine how the following FLOORED me:

In a vision

I asked for the most intimate experience with the Christ.

No one would believe what happened
in a vision more true than
this world:

sacred chord
pulsated light throughout the universe
as I nursed my own
Lord at my


(from "Love Poems from God: Twelve Sacred Voices from the East and West," Daniel Ladinsky trans, [New York: Penguin Compass, 2002,]55.)

I don't even know where to start thinking about this.


(Yes, we can.)

Monday, February 11, 2008


FOTF prefers a foolish (un)holy war

This so amazes me, and so points out how Focus on the Family, on one hand, cares more about its own poor understanding of what it thinks is Teh Truth, and on the other hand, cares more about worldly politics than it cares about Teh Truth!


I am so ready to see this self-important, self-perpetuating faux-Christian, pseudo-religious bullshit burn like the wood, hay, stubble and manure that it is!

FOTF trumpets! Support weakens for Christian-Muslim Accord.

And they don't even get it.

Prayers aloft for one particular brother.



Damn that damn ol' debble!

Now, I quit seein' a demon behind every doily, as they used to say, a long time ago.

But whether the ol' debble ("devil") is just a personification of evil, or he's an actual fallen angel, or what -- Paul spoke of principalities and powers, and I take Paul at his word.

And that son-of-a-bitch is tryin' to get right up in my face today, and he better back the hell off.

This past weekend, I was about as low as I've been in a long time. I miss my wife (been in Boulder for almost 11 months now). I miss my mama (a year and five days ago, she took an ambulance ride from Oklahoma City to Arkansas, and we all were in the last throes of desire for her to recover -- I say "desire" because I'm trying keep in mind the difference between "desire" and "hope.")

I have have clung to my damned ol' self, my sense of self, my roots here, and my irrational attachment to place until I'm worn the hell out. Can't do it no mo -- not no mo.

So, with trepidation, I got up this morning, after another night of tossing and turning, and with the help of a dose of renewed faith that always comes along during Lent, if you look for it, I took a moment with a devotional book, laughed out loud at the sheer lunacy of believing God gives a rip about my feelings, or my sense of loss, or my sense of dread, and I dang near just threw the book across the room.

But I didn't. I stood up from the edge of the bed, then dropped and touched my knees to the floor, stood up and again and yelled:


Or something like that.

And I laughed at myself, and I got in the shower whistling, and I threw my back out. So I'm working from home today.

And that ol' debble can take his principalities and powers and shove 'em. I mean, evil is one thing, but he's just bein' a pain in the ass, and I don't have time or energy for another one.

Shoving on. Going through hell, not slowing down.

End "positive" rant.

From Catherine of Sienna's dialogue with God:

I talk about it sometimes with Him, all the suffering in the world.

"Dear God," I have prayed, "how is it possible
all the horrors I have seen, all the atrocities you allow man
to commit when you--God--are ever standing
so near and could help us?
Could we not hear your voice say 'No'
with such love and power
never again would
we harm?"

And my Lord replied, "Who would understand if I said that I
cannot bear
to confine a wing, and not let it learn from the course it chooses."

But what of a man walking lost in a forest
weeping and calling your name for help, and unknown to him he
is heading for a covered pit with sharp spears in it
that will maim his flesh when he crashes
through the trap?

"Yes, why don't I remove every object from this world that could
cause someone to weep? Yes, why don't I speak in a way
that could save a life?”

I opened up my mouth and the Infinite ran to the edges of space--
and all possibilities are contained therein, all possibilities,
even sorrow.

”In the end, nothing that ever caused one pain will exist,
No one will begrudge Me.

The Absolute Innocence of all within my Creation
takes a while to understand."

~ Catherine of Siena

Sunday, February 10, 2008


OMG, I am so dead meat

So, last night, I pan-fried a ribeye steak. Awhile ago, as I always do, I put a little water in the skillet, and turned the burner up on high, which is the easiest way to clean a steak-fryin' skillet -- and promptly walked away and forgot all about it. Came back here to my office to do a little work.

By the time I realized what I'd done, the skillet had burned just about up and the whole front of the house was FILLED with smoke. I grabbed Ice-T, threw him in the front bathroom and shut him in, then opened windows and the front door and turned the ceiling fans on high.

Ugh. The whole house smells like well, dead meat warmed over. YUCK. Riker and Bailey are extremely interest in the goings-on, and are letting me know it.

I expect to see Bailey trotting down the hall any minute, since one of the kitchen windows is missing a screen, and if he launched himself off of Riker's back he could actually get in through the window. He has done similar feats, WITH a screen in place.

Dr. ER, were she here, would go get a room tonight.

Sigh. Add fumigation to the still-lengthy list of things I have to get done to this house before I try to sell it.



Los Estados del Norte Americano Unidos ........ (y con Canada?)

DrLobo says, among many other things:

"We need open our borders and then to tell Mexico exactly how their economic problems are going to be solved and how they are going to kiss our ass in the mean time."

HapaThealogy says:

" ... Actually, we need to get out of Mexico's business and let them run their own country. They'd do a lot better if certain folks didn't keep trying to manage their economy so that it benefits the U.S. at their expense. Change happens when people do it themselves, not when someone does it for them. Isn't that what we're talking about here? Yes WE can, not Yes, someone can do it for us."

ER says:

"Isn't it too late for that? Isn't Mexico aleady a virtual vassal? The biggest Latin American country is the United States now. It boggles that candidates for office in Mexico campaign in the United States, raise money int he United States, and have constituencies who votre for them -- in the United States.

"It's too late to turn back.

"An actual open border would be more honest than what we have now. With such, we all should have a say in how the two countries, already intertwined, then formally acknowledged, go forward."

What say y'all? Los Estados del Norte Americano Unidos: Is it inevitable?

(Yes, we can)

Friday, February 08, 2008


We, the People, must repent, and those who will not turn from Fear, Selfishness, NeoColonialism and all Global Sins, will fall by the wayside


God! Deliver us!

Change! Jesus Christ, yes! From a million things!


I'll start: An America that is GREAT because of it's ASPIRATIONS and its LIBERTY, not because of its hard POWER and its WEALTH.



Dobson, 'Speaking as a private citizen'

The erstwhile would-be king maker speaks as a not-so-private citizen:

I am endorsing Gov. Mike Huckabee for President of the United States today. My decision comes in the wake of my statement on Super Tuesday that I could not vote for Sen. John McCain, even if he goes on to win the Republican nomination. His record on the institution of the family and other conservative issues makes his candidacy a matter of conscience and concern for me.

That left two pro-family candidates whom I could support, but I was reluctant to choose between them. However, the decision by Gov. Mitt Romney to put his campaign "on hold" changes the political landscape. The remaining candidate for whom I could vote is Gov. Huckabee. His unwavering positions on the social issues, notably the institution of marriage, the importance of faith and the sanctity of human life, resonate deeply with me and with many others. That is why I will support Gov. Huckabee through the remaining primaries, and will vote for him in the general election if he should get the nomination. Obviously, the governor faces an uphill struggle, given the delegates already committed to Sen. McCain. Nevertheless, I believe he is our best remaining choice for President of the United States.

(NOTE: Dr. Dobson made these statements as a private citizen. This article is for informational purposes only and should not be construed as a reflection of the opinions of Focus on the Family or Focus on the Family Action.)

Pbtbthththth! ... I copy-and-pasted this IN a bar, while drinkin' a Beefeater and smokin' a cigar, immediately after a text-phone fight with Dr. ER. Does that mean I'll go to hell? Damn it all. SIGH.


Thursday, February 07, 2008


'Oration on the Dignity of Man'

"God's love would not permit that he whose duty it was to praise God's creation should be forced to condemn himself as a creation of God."

I find myself returning to Pico Della Mirandola's "Oration On the Dignity Of Man" from time to time.

It's time.

No sense of total depravity here! No sense of Original Sin hardly.

No condemnation.

Romans 8 -- a description of the Good News!

How anyone twists the Gospel into a conditional proposition is beyond me. No if ... then! Those who insist that any condition is attached to Grace -- any! even "acceptance"! -- are "walking in the flesh," not "in the Spirit."




The GOP McCain Mutiny

Ahhh ...

So will McCain’s opponents climb down off the ledge and accept the possibility of him being the nominee? Surely they must realize, even grudgingly, that their intellectual credibility among conservatives would be further eroded by failing to back a pro-life, pro-surge, fiscal conservative over a Democratic opponent with diametrically opposing views.

But clearly some of them have priorities other than maintaining credibility. They are in the business, a lucrative business, of drumming up the discontented, playing to the G.O.P.’s most conservative elements and enjoying the applause of their fellow pundits. It is a closed circle—talk-show host interviewing talk-show host and blogger quoting blogger. Their audience is devoted but limited. Their influence beyond that sphere is nil. They are content and will be content to live in their own world, one not remotely representative of the country at large or even the party they (sometimes) claim to champion.

Read all about it in the New York Observer.

Oh boy, oh boy, oh boy -- this is even better!

Dobson: I cannot, and will not, vote for McCain.

And in case anybody missed it:

Dobson: I'm between a rock and a hard place.

So said the brilliant and at times pithy Dr. ER: "He made them both, the rock and the hard place. Most people just find themselves there sometime."

Oooh, oooh! The funnest places to see the writhing on the right wing is at the blogs of the sheeple themselves!


Wednesday, February 06, 2008


Highlights from the home county paper

First, redneck prayers, thoughts and vibes for the folks in Arkansas, Tennessee, Mississippi and Kentucky who felt the finger of God, as they say, in the form of tornadoes. In February! This does not bode well for the coming spring.

Oh, and Oklahoma statewide primary election results.

From the county crime report:

A woman reported in the Wildhorse Mountain Road area that her neighbor's dog was killing her geese, chickens and ducks. (I believe I would ask Mr. Mossberg to take care of that.)

Vandalism was reported. The suspect allegedly beat on the victim's door with a rock. (Grossly misunderstood redneck courtin' ritual.)

Trespassing was reported. The suspect was advised to stay off of property. (Good job, Andy!)

An out-of-control juvenile was reported north of Gore.

A vicious animal was reported at large on Moonshine Road north of Vian. The owner could not be located. The case remains open. (Probably a dog, but maybe not. See above.)

A man was arrested near Paradise Hill for suspected public intoxication. He allegedly left his vehicle when it caught fire. (I hate when that happens.)

Trespassing was reported at a church. It was reported that someone was spinning tires in the parking lot. (The suspect fled, leaving the balancer at the scene.)

Vandalism was reported in Vian. The victim reported his fence had been taken down and neatly stacked. (Well, if that don't beat all. I would have assigned or taken a picture of that for the paper.)

In other news:

Stabbing in self defense. (Don't think I've ever heard of such!)

First-grader, armed to the tooth, still suspended. (A future out-of-control juvenile?)

Benefit ropin' planned for injured bronc rider. (That's folks takin' care of their own.)

Finally, 'Deference' is offical city character trait for February. (That's just weird.)

I love my old stompin' grounds. And I'm makin' light, not making fun. My home county paper is a great one.


Tuesday, February 05, 2008


Some kind of, like, meme.

1. What is your occupation? Writer, editor, researcher, historian, communicator. Can't type, tho.

(Continued in the first comment.)



Cast a vote, get a Jack Chick tract!

As usual, I voted today at my neighborhood Southern Baptist Church and, as usual, I picked up a Jack Chick tract and, as usual, I feel led to share it with y'all!

For what it's worth: Dr. ER voted for Hill, and I voted for Obama. How Oklahoma will go I really have no idea.



'Descent of the Modernists'


(Illustration depicting Modernism as the descent from Christianity to atheism. "The Descent of the Modernists", by E. J. Pace, Christian Cartoons, 1922; republished in "Seven Questions in Dispute," by William Jennings Bryan, 1924.)


Monday, February 04, 2008


Lent me your advice

To: Y'all
From: Me

I'm seeking your recommendations for a daily meditation book or guide -- must be nondigital -- to use during daily meditation time during Lent.

Not looking for a "Bible study," nor anything Max Lucado-ish (nothing wrong with him, I'm just looking for something a little ... deeper). Doesn't have to be exclusively Christian. (DrLobo: Something meditative on Logos-Sophia-Christ?)

If no meditation book or guide per se comes to mind, recommend a book I might read a little of each day betwixt Wednesday and Easter. And even as I typed that, I realize I haven't read "The Pilgrim's Progress" in a long time. ... Or "The Pilgrim's Regress" either ...

But, please, recommend away.

I'm doing something different Lent-wise this year. Not giving up anyTHING. What I aim to let go of is more ethereal, and it will require daily discipline and meditation.

So, what do y'all recommend?


(P.S I stumbled across the Cartoon Church -- looks interesting! -- while looking for the attached art, which is "The Battle Between Carnival and Lent," by Pieter Bruegel the Elder [1559].)

Sunday, February 03, 2008


Headline goes here headline goes here hea

Huff puff, already busy today. (No time to think of a clever headline even!)

First, to church, for spiritual nourishment, and perhaps, to pick up information on online seminary classes from a friend.

Second, to the Pig Out Palace in Henryetta, Okla., for vittles off the buffet and to exchange some paperwork with Big Brudder.

Third, a Super Bowl party at the home of Three Desks Down, where I will hang for just awhile and then back here to the house to do some work-work, as well as some personal work ...

BY THE WAY, woo hoo! A national topical history journal editor let me know by e-mail last night that a letter was heading out in Monday's mail, with three peer-reviewed and marked-up copies of an article I submitted last summer, and that he had conditionally decided to publish it, conditions bein' that I make the changes recommended by the judges. Very cool, for an ol' redneck Okie.


Saturday, February 02, 2008


Grand Central Station: So cool, it froze!

This is now the coolest thing I have ever seen on the Internets. Cooler even than that record player!

See more about it at Improv Everywhere: We Cause Scenes.

(Tip o' the Resistol to BlondeSense, and to Three Desks Down, who told me about it before I had time to watch it.)



Fundamentalism to Wisdom in 12 steps

OK. This is freaky and kind of cool.

Being a fundamentalism addict, I walked slowly by Neil's Candy Store awhile ago and something in the window caught my eye (of course!):

Copycats, wherein he seeks to dismiss historical parallels among world religions and Christian mythology.

Which lead me to a clever piece "proving" that Abraham Lincoln never existed.

Which got me to think about the Jesus Seminar, where the pastor of my church will be ... something ... not a full fellow, but a participant of some kind this spring.

Which caused me to go to the Wikipedia page on the Jesus Seminar for a gloss.

Which led me to the concept of "sapiential eschatology" (realized eschatology) , which is a pretty good summary of where my thinking has gone the past couple of years.

Which led me to pondering Jesus as radical sage.

Which led me to "wise man."

Which led me to Sophia! Again! She keeps popping up!

Which led me to Logos.

Which led me to Christ as Logos.

Which is Christ as divine in some way, an idea with which I will not part, although such phrases as "son of God" fall short, and the concept of the Trinity is "beyond the scope of this post." :-)

Which led me to Jesus, my friend.

Which just shows to go ya: You can find Wisdom, AND Jesus, from Neil's place, but it's pretty good hike to both.

And no, the "12 step" thing is not lost on me. I am, after all, a recovering post-1979 Southern Baptist.



Friday, February 01, 2008


Soul market hangs on location, location ...

"... the free world will conquer Communism with the aid of God and a few Marines! God has a hard-on for Marines because we kill everything we see! He plays His games, we play ours! To show our appreciation for so much power, we keep heaven packed with fresh souls! God was here before the Marine Corps! So you can give your heart to Jesus, but your ass belongs to the Corps! Do you ladies understand?"

--Gunnery Sgt. Hartman, in "Full Metal Jacket"

Not sure what to think of this -- "Costs per Baptism." Oh, who am I foolin'? My first cynical thoughts were:

"That money might have been better spent."

"I wonder if the investors thought they got their money's worth."

"What kind of return can the investors expect on their investment?"

"Is there a futures market for souls?"

"What heppens to the cost of souls during times of inflation? Recession?"

"Has there ever been a soul 'bubble' where irrational exuberance falsely inflates their value until, like all bubbles, there is a bust and market collapse and the price of souls crashes?"

I'm suspicious of these kinds of figures. I'm suspicious of anything that separates concern for "souls" from concern for people.

I'm suspicious of any accounting system that purports to gauge God's involvement in the world, and in people's hearts and lives, by tallying up the "churched" versus the "unchurched," the numbers of "church starts" versus closed churches, levels of donation or spending or anything else that can be added up.

That's market share, and that's religion. Very Western. There ain't much holy about it, in my book, which, in fact, is the Good Book and all its mysteries, not a ledger or Excel spreadsheet and generally accepted accounting practices.

Discuss: What cost the Gospel of Christ?

"Critical, cynical and suspicious is no way to go through life, son," someone said.*

"Keeps me warm," ER said.**

(One ER '70s-'80s Movie Point for ID of the two movies referenced. * is a corruption of the quote. ** is verbatim.)


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