If You’re a Christian or a Pagan, You’re Not Observing Today Right

Today is the day most people call Halloween or “All Hallows Eve.”  It was a fun way to get candy when I was a kid, but now I have problems with the holiday for Christian, commercial and political reasons.

First of all, as a Christian, it doesn’t seem right to return to darkness when God has called us into His marvelous light (1 Peter 2:9).  The Devil gets enough attention the rest of the year, without having his own day.  And recently in this blog I commented on churches compromising with Halloween when I asked, “What do pumpkin sales have to do with Christianity?”  A few years ago, my church in Florida wrote an essay called “Should Christians Celebrate Halloween?” Check it out, if you’re not familiar with the issue already.

Personally, I prefer to call today “Reformation Day,” because it was on October 31, 1517 that Martin Luther nailed the 95 theses to his church door and started the whole Protestant movement.  If it wasn’t for that, every Christian this side of Constantinople would still be Catholic now.

As for the commercial reason, Halloween is a lot more commercial than it used to be.  Back when I was a kid, most of us made our own costumes.  We were encouraged to be creative and original with those costumes; it was considered cheating to buy one from the store.  But how many kids make their own costumes now?  Today when I passed through a Wal-Mart, the busiest section of the store was where they had the costumes and candy.

Moreover, many folks go overboard on the outdoor decorations, as if Halloween is another day like Christmas where the main colors happen to be orange and black.  I think I saw Halloween lights for the first time in 1996, not to mention the fake cobwebs, pumpkins and spiders, etc., that people put in their trees.  Gosh, it’s confusing enough that a website called CthulhuLives.org offers Christmas carols that promise to make Christmas spookier than Halloween.  If it wasn’t for Thanksgiving being in the middle, I’m sure the differences between Halloween and Christmas would be blurred by now.  Do you think we’ll soon heard some Druid or Wiccan telling us that we need to get back to the original spirit of Halloween?

Finally, the political reason.  Most of our holidays, from Memorial Day to Thanksgiving, observe important events in our history, or uphold what we might call “conservative values.”  By contrast, Halloween promotes a liberal value, the “entitlement mentality”; it encourages people to go begging for treats they did not earn.  You can see what the Canada Free Press had to say about that here:  “Halloween’s Liberal Message.”

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Whatever you call today, I hope your end-of-October day is a pleasant one.

Dodged It Again

We did get frost this morning, but it was too light to hurt anything in the gardens and flower beds.  When I got up the temperature was 34 degrees, so it looks like we dodged the freeze again.  Judging from the lack of a fuss from the locals, whereas frost is always a big deal in Florida, here in Kentucky it’s only a matter of concern if it comes after the spring flowers appear.

Today is also the last day of races at Keeneland for the fall.  With the month ending tomorrow, I am now looking forward to what November may bring.  In the past, November was often my favorite month of the year, so hopefully it will live up to expectations again, and be better than the other months have been lately.

The Night of the Freeze?

In Florida, there was one night in October I always looked forward to – the first night when it was cool enough outside to sleep with the windows open.  We thought of it as an unofficial holiday; call it “Open Window Night” if you wish.  Kentucky also has a weather-related night in October, but it’s not something anyone is happy about.  Yes, I’m talking about the first freeze of fall.

We thought we were going to get frost last night.  I urged Leive to get into the garden and harvest what she could before the cold killed any plants.  Together we finished off the tomatoes, peppers and eggplants for the season; currently they’re on the kitchen counter in several grocery bags.  Leive also harvested all the sweet potatoes, both the leaves and roots.  Because she mainly planted the sweet potatoes for leaves, and the clay soil left the roots small and in strange shapes, I thought she was going to save the roots and replant them next spring, but now she says we’ll eat the roots, too, and start with new vines from the store next time.  Finally, we picked some okra, but left those plants intact to see how much longer they’ll survive; Leive is trying to get some ripe seed pods from them for next year.  All the veggies mentioned above were a success, so I expect we’ll be growing them again.

Contrary to what the weatherman said, it only got down to 39 degrees last night, so all the plants left outside survived.  It looks like we jumped the gun, but the results will be the same if it freezes tonight.  Now the temperature is falling and the furnace inside is running regularly, so let’s see if tonight is the night.  Shabbat Shalom!

What You Can Learn From Five Monkeys

I don’t know who wrote this, but it should make you think.  This appears to explain how over the past 70+ years, the government taught us to depend on it, rather than on God and ourselves.

Start with a cage containing five monkeys.  Inside the cage, hang a banana on a string and place a set of stairs under it.  Before long, a monkey will go to the stairs and start to climb towards the banana.

As soon as he touches the stairs, spray all the other monkeys with cold water.  After a while another monkey makes the attempt with same result — all the other monkeys are sprayed with cold water.  Pretty soon when a monkey tries to climb the stairs, the other monkeys will try to prevent it.

Now, put the cold water away.  Remove one monkey from the cage and replace it with a new one.  The new monkey sees the banana and wants to climb the stairs.

To his shock, all of the other monkeys attack him.  After another attempt and attack, he knows that if he tries to climb the stairs he will be assaulted.

Next, remove another of the original five monkeys and replace it with a new one.

The newcomer goes to the stairs and is attacked. The previous newcomer takes part in the punishment with enthusiasm.

Likewise, replace a third original monkey with a new one, then a fourth, then the fifth.  Every time the newest monkey takes to the stairs he is attacked.

Most of the monkeys that are beating him up have no idea why they were not permitted to climb the stairs or why they participated in the beating of the newest monkey.  After replacing all of the original monkeys, none of the remaining monkeys have ever been sprayed with cold water.  Nevertheless, no monkey ever again approaches the stairs to try for the banana.

Why not?

Unquote:  I wish I had as much faith in God as liberals have in government.

Lawnmower Dragster

Longtime readers will remember my messages from June 3, 2009 and June 11, 2009, when I posted four hilarious videos from The Red Green Show, Canada’s answer to Tim Allen. Now what can you do with a lawnmower, a legless chair, a ladder, a kid’s bike and duct tape? You’ll be amazed at the result!


Colonel Allen West Is One of Us!

Last August 16, I told you about Colonel Allen West, the Republican candidate for Florida’s 22nd congressional district.  Now I’ve been impressed by another video.  Apparently it was filmed in the middle of Ft. Lauderdale, last New Year’s Day.  Here he is talking about Israel, and except for mispronouncing one or two Hebrew names, he sounds just like the folks I hung around with, when I was living in Florida.  Wow!  Again I wish he was running in my district, either in Florida (district 24) or Kentucky (district 6).

Speaking of Florida congressional races, did you see what George Will wrote over the weekend about Alan Grayson, the moonbat representing Orlando?  I couldn’t have said it better myself!

America’s Worst Politician

I Can, I Will, and I Must

We got a little bit of rain on Sunday night and early on Monday.  Temperatures remained balmy until now, though; I didn’t need to wear a jacket whenever I went out.  Today the sky has been dreary grey since morning, with winds blowing in the 20-30 MPH range.  With all the leaves lying around, I felt it wasn’t a windstorm so much as a leaf storm.  At 1:30 we started getting rain as well, from a frontal system stretched all across the Midwest (at the time I’m writing this, it is running from Ontario to Tennessee).  So far the wind and rain around here haven’t been too heavy, though I hear that in the west, around Bowling Green and Louisville, they’ve gotten gusts strong enough to blow over the big trucks, what you call tractor-trailer rigs.

Last Wednesday at a gas station, I ran into Jeremy, the copier repairman from my former workplace.  He told me the Techpubs office has been confused and unhappy since I left.  however, I’m not expecting them to call the folks they let go, and ask them to come back.  This isn’t the first time I’ve been laid off — it happened in 1993, 1995, 2000 and 2005.  On none of those occasions were the ex-employees ever invited to return, when the company’s situation got better.

I haven’t found any good job prospects as of yet.  There isn’t much demand for tech writers, and I have yet to find anything that pays something comparable to what I was making at L-3.  No surprise there.  You probably knew already that Kentucky doesn’t have a high-tech center like Silicon Valley or Oak Ridge, TN.  As far as I know, the state doesn’t even have a small research park like the one I used to work in, on the east side of Orlando.  Most of the state’s economy is strictly agricultural and coal mining.  Lexmark, a big manufacturer of printers on the other side of Lexington, advertised a tech writer position that I thought would fit me perfectly, but it’s in the Philippines!  Yes, Leive was tickled pink when she heard about that one, though she conceded that I would probably be paid in pisos rather than dollars.  At least she wouldn’t be far from her family, even if the job is in Manila rather than on Mindanao.

Fortunately I’m not as desperate as the poor fellow above, because I have one other choice if I want to stay in Kentucky.  I can promote my Pre-Paid Legal business.  Because of the layoffs, the corporate world has left a bad taste in my mouth, so I want to be in a place where corporate America will never throw me away again; getting another job will just put me back where I was before this month.  What’s more, my Pre-Paid Legal sponsor, Terrell Cherry, was laid off at this time last year, and now he’s making more money part-time than I did full-time.  I put my business on hold in July and August, when I was doing all that mandatory overtime, and look how much good it did me!

Along that line, I’ve been taking my business cards with me every time I go out, and handing them to anyone I meet who is interested.  Under the circumstances, failure is not an option; that’s why I wrote “I can, I will, and I must” for the title of this message.  Last Saturday, I started working on one of my long-term goals in the business, getting a license to sell Pre-Paid Legal in Florida.  And I spent Sunday evening in Louisville, listening to training from Darnell Self, one of the top associates in Pre-Paid Legal.  Mr. Self earns $90,000 in a typical month; would you believe $20,000 is a bad month for him?  After the training we spent the rest of the evening in a nearby restaurant/sports bar.  In the picture below, from left to right, you can see me, Mr. Self, and Mr. Cherry.

To finish up, if you haven’t looked at the Pre-Paid Legal opportunity yet, I recommend you do so.  The way the economy is going, sooner or later all Americans are going to need this service; 80% of Europeans have something like it already.  This means it is only a question of whether you sign up with my team, or somebody else’s.  Call 1-800-394-6919 or 1-770-772-1700 for a recorded message on what it’s all about, or go to my website and watch the videos, and then contact me!  Sign up for the service and you’ll help me a little; become an Associate like myself and you can help me a lot.  Finally, we’re offering a special that ends on Friday; after that, the one-time cost to become an Associate will double.  I hope to hear from all my regular readers very soon.