Sunday, January 29, 2017
Do you know who John Piper is?
John Piper is a very influential Evangelical speaker. He was a former pastor of a Baptist Church in Minneapolis, Minnesota of all places and is, according to my son, "very deep".
John has a son: Barnabas Piper. Only a guy as deep as John Piper would have a son named Barnabas.
Barnabas is a writer and has a blog called "The Blazing Center". I don't know if he is as deep as his dear old dad, but he seems like a nice guy and is always worth a read.
He wrote a post last year titled "Stop Calling Your Wife Hot". Kid Piper has a problem with men calling their wives "hot". Or if they are really hip and with it: "hawt".
Piper says, "I saw a tweet from a friend recently that said, “If I hear one more Christian guy call his wife hot (every time he talks about her), I’m going to throw a plate at the wall.” I suggested that he actually throw the plate at the guy calling his wife hot, or “smokin’ hot” for that matter (tongue in cheek, of course). Maybe it would knock some sense and normalcy into them."
I thought I was pretty plugged in on the various controversies on Planet Evangelical.
For example, "The Worship Wars". This refers to the total change in Sunday Morning Worship Services over the past 20 years. The idea of wearing your "Sunday Best" to church as gone from wearing a suit and tie to wearing short pants that may/may not have a hole in them.
In fact, one of the ways you can determine if a church is an Evangelical Church is to look at their music ministry. If there is a band with a bunch of electric guitars that sound like U2, you are in an Evangelical Church.
But this caught me off guard.
Piper says, "Fellas, calling your wife hot to other people is awkward. We can’t agree with you. That would be really weird." I'm not sure why this is weird, unless, by agreeing that someone's wife is hot, it really means you want to play David and Bathsheeba.
Which is unfair. By acknowledging someone is hot, you're just agreeing that she's a good looking gal, not that you want to sleep with her, which you probably do, in the back of your mind at least. But that's why you go to church in the first place.
He continues, "We can’t disagree with you. That would be really mean". I agree with that.
Guy One: "My wife is hot"
Guy Two: "Dude, have you been to the eye doctor lately?"
Years ago, I knew this guy who looked like Don Draper, who is probably the most handsome fictional ad executive ever. ( This is a transcript of an actual conversation between me and my wife. Me: "I wish I looked like Don Draper". My Wife: "I wish you did too". )
This guy's wife sort of looked and acted like Minnie Pearl. I know you shouldn't judge, but I have no idea what he saw in her. Maybe she had a great personality. She would need it.
One of my friends calls his wife a SWOG, which stands for Sexy Woman of God. Personally, I like "hot" better, but to each his own.
Piper ends his post "It is a great thing to honor your wife publicly. It’s good for people to know your devotion to her and how much you love her. It’s good for people to know you are attracted only to her and want only her. But keep the hotness talk inside the walls of your home. That’s between you and her. Tell her she is smokin’ hot all you want. But don’t tell the rest of us because it does no good for anyone."
There's a lot of truth in that. You don't have to go on and on about it, but honestly, it is not so much about "honoring" your wife as it is about bragging about your catch if you know what I mean. But, really, most men outkick their coverage: they marry women who are way better looking than they deserve.
I know I did.
Saturday, January 21, 2017
Like a lot of Americans, I have this thing called "a job" and it requires me to "go to work" and therefore, I was unable to watch the Inauguration of the 45th President of The United Sates live, but I was able to review it through the magic of DVR. Here is my quick review as we step into this new era where we can make fun of the President again and it won't be regarded as a sin.
1) I have no idea what Kellyanne Conway was thinking when she picked out her outfit to wear to the Inauguration. I generally don't comment about women's clothing unless there's a lot of cleavage showing (my comment: "ay caramba!"). However, it looked like a marching band outfit from the early 80's.
|Kellyane Conway Hugging Dan Quayle|
2) It was good to see Bob Dole there. If there is a nuclear apocalypse, I'm pretty sure only Bob Dole and Keith Richards would survive.
3) Former President George W. Bush is losing his hair.
4) And this is one reason why I miss him.
6) I never got the cult worship of Obama. The commuting of Private Manning's sentence (Um, one thing I would like to see changed in our popular culture: if a man wants to identify as a woman and he still has his junk, he is still referred to as a man) is awful and the pardoning of Oscar Lopez Rivera is indefensible. But, the guy could give a speech, seemed like he enjoyed the job and was a good man even though what he believes and what I believe are two different things. All I can say to him is the refrain of an old rockabilly song: So long, good luck, and goodbye.
7) Now about that speech. President Trump's speech sounded better on radio when I first heard it than when I watched it on TV later. From a performance stand point (note: I have taken THREE speech classes) Trump has got to do something with his hands. His hand gestures distract from his message. But, it was one of his better performances I have seen him give. He's not as good as Obama in speaking, but he's not as bad as Bush, if that makes any sense.
8) The speech itself. President Trump could have turned around from the podium and flipped off everyone seated behind him and it would have had the same effect. Bob Schieffer said it took the "hide off of every politician". It may have come off heavy handed to the mainstream media types, but it was catnip to Trump's base who has been waiting for someone to chew out members of both parties who they feel like abandoned them.
9) Yes, the speech was dark. It was not rainbows, unicorns, and Skittles. And Chris Matthews, I was a history major too and I've studied World War II a lot. Trump's speech was nowhere close to being "Hitlerian". You know better.
10) You remember the old Who song that said "Meet the new boss, same as the old boss"? I don't think you can say that about Trump. There's a new sheriff in town and he's going to do things his way which is different from the way things were done before. It may work. It may not. We won't know until we know.
Sunday, January 15, 2017
As you may remember, 2016 was a big year for me.
I had three e-books published. I am an author listed on Amazon. My books have sold in the dozens.
But life isn't easy when you are a famous writer. No, you must come up with a new "product" (booger joke books) that fit in with your brand (booger joke writer). It is not simple to come up with an idea for a book.
I had this idea for a book about a young girl who accidentally kills a woman, steals her shoes, meets three "friends" with various "issues" and for some reason, ticks off the dead woman's sister. But then I remembered this sounds too close to The Wizard of Oz.
But one idea I have might actually work. The title: My Presidents.
It would be a humorous look at the Presidents of my lifetime, from Eisenhower to Obama. And now, of course, to Trump.
I've all but abandoned the idea. Do you know how hard it is to write an Eisenhower joke? Pretty difficult. One thing that is interesting about Eisenhower is he was probably the most popular person in America when he was elected in 1952. After all, he saved Western Civilization! By 1960, all of the cool people thought Eisenhower was a dumb old man.
My idea for the title of the book came from someone I worked with in my insurance days. She used to call President Reagan "Your President Reagan". She didn't like Reagan. I did. So he was mine.
So here we are now just a few days from a President Donald John Trump.
It has been an unusual transition. The progressive/youth/celebrity/ left culture handled Trump's surprise victory with their usual amount of maturity.
It has been one long and loud pout. They have protested. They have "hashtaged". They have blocked and unfriend on Facebook. They have cried. They have lectured. Boy, have they lectured. Just last week one grande dame of the American Cinema took time out of a scheduled adulation to remind us, you know, the little people, that Mixed Martial Arts were not "the arts".
They have done everything except move to Canada like they promised they would.
I have only one word: relax.
Seriously. Everything is going to be all right. This country survived a Civil War, a Depression, and Two World Wars. It certainly is going to be able to survive a Big Orange Man With Little Bitty Hands.
Eight years ago, during the depths of a very serious financial crisis, we elected a man with a very thin resume because at least it seemed at the time, he could give a good speech. Also, his hue would purge our sins from the national memory.
Did I vote for Obama? No. I thought he was a garden variety, leftist Democrat. I think I was correct in my assessment.
I thought the press treated him like a Faberge egg and let him get away with a ton of stuff. But you know what? The country is fine.
Did I vote for Trump? No. I share the concerns of many regarding his temperament and I'm still ticked off to what he did to the USFL.
I think the best way to look at Trump is the way Comedian Norm McDonald, of all people, advises. Trump, he says, is a pragmatist at heart. He will try to please people because pleasing people through his resorts is what has made him a very rich man. If public opinion turns on him on something, he will turn with it.
But what is important is Trump will be The President in few days. Your President. My President. Our President. If he doesn't do a good job, you can vote against him in four years. It comes quicker than you think.
Read more here: http://www.miamiherald.com/living/liv-columns-blogs/dave-barry/article123321019.html#storylink=cpy
Sunday, January 8, 2017
How was my first week of 2017?
You better get ready, but I am an official old grouch and I am obligated by law to tell you, in the greatest of all detail, about any medical problem I might have. Actually, I'm supposed to wait until I am out in public, preferably a crowded restaurant where I'm supposed to announce: "I HAD THE WORSE STOMACH FLU IN THE HISTORY OF MANKIND AND I STILL MIGHT HAVE IT! I HOPE I DON'T GIVE IT TO YOU. REALLY."
I did have a terrible stomach virus which would have killed me if I wasn't in such good shape.
You see, it happened like this.
The day after New Year's Day, my wife and I had the day off so we decided to go to the movies.
If you haven't been to the movies in a while, it can be quite a shock. It is very expensive to go to the movies. I haven't been to a non-matinee movie since Bill Clinton's first term. But, we had a gift card.
We decided to see Rogue One: Yet Another Star Wars Movie But Don't Worry George Lucas Had Nothing To Do With It.
Since I didn't have to pay anything to see the movie, I asked my wife if she wanted me to be a big spender and buy some snacks. She wanted a soft pretzel. I got a "medium" Diet Coke (at the movies, a medium soft drink equals about 400 gallons). The cost was almost $12 dollars. I am not making that up.
How was the movie? It may come as a surprise to you but I am not a nerd when it comes to Star Wars. If they hadn't made a movie after the third one (or the sixth one; the one with the Ewoks), I would have been fine. I go to see Star Wars movies like some people go to church on Christmas-it is something I am obligated to do.
I enjoyed the movie, although I do have some observations. One, the body armor the Storm Troopers wear has to be the worst in the galaxy. Someone shooting a spit-wad could take down forty Storm Troopers.
Also, in a pivotal part of the movie (SPOILER ALERT!!!! There is a law which says I have to write this) Darth Vader whips out some major FORCE MO-JO to get back the stolen plans of The Death Star which appear to be on a flash drive and/or floppy disc. It seems this galaxy far, far away, might be only twenty minutes ahead of us in technology.
While he's busy opening a Can of Force (I saw Can of Force on The Midnight Special in 1978) on people, the flash drive/floppy disc somehow makes it into the hands of one of Paul Simon's wives. It seems to me he could have just used the Force to get the flash drive/floppy disc to fly back into his hands. He's Darth Vader for goodness' sakes.
After the movie, we drove in the typical Georgia early winter weather (monsoon) and ended up at our third favorite Mexican restaurant for supper. I had my usual: Burrito, enchilada, rice and beans. It is hard to mess up that order.
We made it home and watched a Showtime Original Program in which every character responds to every situation with a very, very bad cuss word.
Character One: "I got the mail today.
Character Two: "Oh *&%*"
Character One: "Sure, I always get the *&^%*&^% mail."
Then we went to bed.
I was sleeping pretty soundly before the burrito struck back. I woke up to some awful indigestion. Then it started.
Despite the fact that I am old and I feel a great need to describe what happened, I won't. All I can say is the Force was strong with this one.
I had chills. I had a fever. I was laying around saying "Help me Obi-Wan Kenobi!"
None of this woke up my wife, who is The Queen of Light Sleepers.
When the alarm went off, she woke, looked at me and said some loving words I had never heard before. "You should call in sick."
For the first time in over twenty years, I called in sick and I missed two days of work. It was just as well because those two days were a blur. I believe I saw Obi-Wan. He told me to drink some Gatorade.