Tuesday, February 27, 2007

Crushing the Box

Ya know, I'm tired of hearing the phrase "think outside the box". What does that really mean? Why does the box have to remain in the picture? Why can't we just crush the box and cast it aside?

I mean, really? Why can't we take the box out of the picture.

1. Two party system? Why? Cuz it's always been there? Or because we're conditioned to believe we can't do any better. See here at BraveHumans.

2. You must vote for the candidates on the ballot? Why? Cuz these are our best options? I don't think so. Check out None of the Above.

3. Remain underrepresented? Why? Cuz an act of Congress constrained us to 435 representatives, regardless of the population of the country? Get real. Take a look at Scott's and Brian's comments here, all in response to this post at BraveHumans.

We can do better. Crush the box!

Sunday, February 25, 2007

Friday, February 23, 2007

Twenty Years Later

When they were popular in the mid-80s and up through the early 90s, I thought, "they're done!". I never thought they would survive. Now, on our trip to Florida, the Artist could be heard singing this song when it came on the radio.

By the way...who says you can't go home?

Thursday, February 22, 2007


Hey all,

My nickname might as well be Token. Why? I seem to be the only one in my little blog corner of the world willing to contribute to or comment on BraveHumans. (Right now, I am the sole conservative contributor.) The site is begging for more conservative commentary. You all have bright ideas and express them well on your sites. Please stop by BraveHumans and do the same there.


Monday, February 19, 2007


Actually, dun trippin'. :-)

The Quipper family just returned with me from my latest Florida business trip. The family had lots of fun, taking in the Flamingo Gardens and Wannado City, among other things. We experienced extremely cold temperatures in northern Florida coming and going from Ft. Lauderdale, but enjoyed the days in between.

To experience more of the vacation, be sure to visit Mrs. Quipper's site as she reminisces about parts of the trip. I have some other observations here.

Thou shalt not covet

After I left the corporate office on Friday, we drove up A1A for a while, on and off of several of the islands. Wow, are the houses on the intracoastal awesome! Great views, big houses, big, BIG yachts. Someone owns them. I want one. (Okay, really, I'd like to go on one. Don't want to own one.)

After seeing some of the California coast and the Florida coast, I realized I liked the Florida coast better. It is more accessible.

Exercise? When?

I was able to spend some time in the hotel pool with the kids. 30 minutes, maybe. Boy, was I pooped aftewards. I felt like I needed to sleep for 10-12 hours. My asthma makes it tough to get into a pool, but I realized I need to do more than I'm currently doing to say in shape.

Sad Story

When putting away our bags to leave a Georgia hotel, I was approached by a 7-8 year old girl, asking for help getting a coin out of the nearby vending machine. I was able to get the coin for her.

She then proceeded to ask me if I had a quarter I could give her, because she couldn't get what she wanted out of the machine. I told her she should ask her mom or dad, to which she replied, "I don't have a dad." I told her she should ask her mom then, and I prepared to enter the elevator with several bags. She started telling me something else, then started asking another question. She stopped herself, and said, "Oh, never mind."

After I went to the car and returned to the room to collect more bags, Mrs. Quipper told me that this girl proceeded to ask the two maids and Mrs. Quipper for change, too, and they all told her to ask her mom. Undaunted, she looked for someone else to ask.

Oh, what did she want from the vending machine? Coke. At 7:30am. When continental breakfast and beverages were served for free on the first floor.

Some entrepreneurial character would say she had gumption, and wouldn't stop til she got what she wanted. Unfortunately, the only way she was going to get it was to usurp her mother, or do it without her mother's knowing and by asking others for handouts. (Or worse yet, she had her mother's full support for this activity.) Trolling the hall of a hotel, looking for strangers walking out of their hotel rooms, asking them for money. It was sad.

The Best For Last

We made it home safely after altering our route on Sunday. We chose not to drive through the wild, wooly mountains of West Virginia. The roads and the truckers are intriguing enough in good weather, and we decided not to risk it. So, we extended our route by 3.5 hours to travel through Tennessee and Kentucky instead. We didn't see snow flurries until we got north of Columbus, OH. No problems on the drive. Hurrah!

I took today off work as part of my vacation time. It was fun to see the kids playing in the snow, finally having a chance to use two of their Christmas presents - a snowball maker and a snow brick maker. Here we are, mid-February, and the kids finally had enough snow to play in. They had a great time.

Off to work again tomorrow.

Thursday, February 08, 2007

Cannon Fodder

I've read through this post twice, and am trying not to jump to the knee-jerk conclusions that I have done both times. My defense-minded self says, "Yes!" My liberty-minded self says, "Wait a minute!"

Outside of the pressing need to stop ourselves from being wimped into submission, is this appropriate?

Lurkers, hiatuses and global warming

Ha! You are wondering how the three items in the post title are related, aren't you? Well, that's a piece of cake. And, no, it's not a test with the answers forthcoming in a future post.

I am making my next business trip to Florida starting this weekend. Fortunately, some very special people will be with me. :-) This means that my business hours and non-business hours are all pre-planned, leaving very little time for new posts. That's the hiatus part.

I may get a little internet time upon arriving at the office and during lunch. So, while I won't be posting, I hope to get around to your blogs and enjoy your new posts. That's the lurking part.

Now, for the global warming part. :-)

Brian and I have had an intriguing dialogue on global warming at the Brave Humans site. (Here is the post and subsequent commentary.) If you read through it, I think you'll understand that there is something different happening at Brave Humans, and you won't see anything like it on left wing or right wing blogs. So, while I'm lurking around your blogs for the next week, why don't you lurk around Brave Humans for a while.

Off to 70-degree temperatures. Hurrah!

Monday, February 05, 2007


Which means "about 70 days `til Easter."

Readings & Sermon

Sunday, February 04, 2007

Quip Van Winkle

Friday and Saturday nights were busy for me this weekend. On Friday, I went to see another band that our keyboardist, Jim, gigs with, called Reality Tour (can't find a website to link). Some of their music overlaps with ours in Running in Circles, but they tend to have more of an edge than we do. They were really good! So good, that time flew and I left when I looked at the time on my cell phone, and it read 1:04am. (Yikes!)

Saturday night, Running in Circles played at the Tequila Ranch in downtown Cleveland. A combination of the nearby Justin Timberlake (yuck!) concert, and people looking to have a good time afterward gave us a better attendance than anyone expected. After all, temperatures were in single digits, and in the minus-20s with wind chill. I got to bed around 3:30am this morning...

...and still made it to bible study, church, and lunch & cake celebrating the Classical Pelican's "Beatle's Birthday" ("will you still need me, will you still feed me....") in fine, wide-awake fashion.

Then digestion kicked in...I turned into Quip Van Winkle for over five hours, missing the Cleveland Cavs wet themselves on national television again, and not returning to consciousness until the middle of the 3rd quarter of the Super Bowl. (I have an "Open Letter to LeBron" post coming in the next week or so, I feel. It's been festering for the last couple of weeks.)

Mrs. Quipper (a.k.a Homestead Lutheran Academy), always diligent in her mid-game TV ad analysis, told me I really didn't miss much from the commercials in the first half, and that I probably ended up seeing the best commercials anyway. She also said the halftime show was all washed up...er, all wet...well, you get the point. She's not a Prince fan, but said he did well, all things considered; it was pouring rain during most of the Super Bowl.

So, 'tis now 11:00pm, and I am refreshed. Better find a way to get tired, right quick. :-)

Saturday, February 03, 2007

We're Not Gonna Take It!

We're not gonna take it
No, we ain't gonna take it
We're not gonna take it any more
We're Not Gonna Take It, Twisted Sister

I coulda used "We're mad as hell, and we're not gonna take it any more" instead, but the graphic just wouldn't have been as kewl! :-)

Let's get right to the point.

You owe it to yourself to check out the digs at Brave Humans. The purpose of the site is to engage people from all parts of the political spectrum in serious, civil dialogue. I am a contributor, and we are recruiting others to contribute as well.

Take a look at the various posts on the site. Agree with some. Absolutely hate others. I think you will find the dialogue refreshing and friendly, and you may even want to invite your friends.

Come back early and often. Lurk. Comment. Engage. Just don't do what you've always done when it comes to politics.

Be Brave. Be Human.

Thursday, February 01, 2007

Church Test Answers

Thank you to all of you who anonymously took my church test. As I indicated in the test, your answers to the questions were not for eliciting right or wrong answers from you.

What was my point? To show the folly of how exact we Christians will be with our religion, but how quickly we throw away particulars in order to keep our favored political party in power. The differences we relish – relish! I say! – in the different Christian denominations are seen as stumbling blocks in politics. How can this be? I have non-denominational friends who are, in practice, anti-denominational. Heck, most denominations have orthodox and heterodox sects within the denominations themselves. You can’t even get these folks together over a pot luck, Martha’s award winning three-bean-salad be damned. :-)

While we Christians may lament that we are not one in the details, we defend the differences and are willing to explain them to each and every person who asks.

So, why do we succumb to the two-party political system in the left-hand kingdom, when we would never compromise like this in the right-hand kingdom?