Monday, February 28, 2011

A Story About A Flood

I recall a joke my Daddy told me when I was growing up. A recent conversation about finding God's will brought it to mind.

There was a flood.

A man was on his front porch, when a police car came by.

“You’d better get in the car, Mister,” the policeman said. “The river is risin’ fast!”

“Oh, no!” the man said, “I’ll be fine. I’m trusting in the Lord!” So the policeman left.

An hour later, the same policeman came by in a boat, and saw the same man, now at a second story window, watching the water go by.

“Better get in the boat,” the policeman said. “The river is still risin’ fast!”

“Oh, no!” the man said, “I’ll be fine. I’m trusting in the Lord!” So the policeman left.

Another hour went by, and the same policeman came by again in his boat and saw the man, now sitting on his roof, watching the water rush by his house.

“Come on, man! Get in the boat!” the policeman said. “The river is still rising!”

“Oh, no!” the man said, “I’ll be fine. I’m trusting in the Lord!” So the policeman left.

Another hour goes by, and a helicopter flies over, and sees the man now perched atop his chimney.

The pilot yells at the man, “Hang on, we’ll lower a rope to you and pull you up!”

“Oh, no!” the man shouts back, “I’ll be fine. I’m trusting in the Lord!” So the helicopter left.

The man dies and goes to heaven, and says to God, “There was a flood & I trusted you to save me! Why’d you let me die?”

“Well,” God answered, “I sent you a car, two boats, and a helicopter. Wasn’t that enough?”

My Daddy taught me a lot through the jokes and stories he told me. He was smart that way. I miss him.

Study Assignment: Leave a comment in which you state what you think the point of this story is. Is it a valid point? Why or why not?

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Tuesday, February 22, 2011

I'm Not TurretinFan

Or am I?

Maybe I played him on TV?

With that, I am... (maybe)


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Saturday, February 19, 2011

The Squirrel's Nut Cache - 2/19/2011

A Saturday Nut Special!

The Nut Cache - a collection of recent things I found interesting, or amusing, or nutworthy.

Last Monday was Valentine's Day. It seems that Valentine's Day is also known as "Singleness Awareness Day" because such a couples-focused day brings to sharp focus those who are not romantically involved at the moment. Some who are not romantically involved harbor ill-will towards people of past romantic interest. So, what better for the non-romantically involved to do on Valentine's Day but take a class on Voodoo dolls? It reminds me of this beer ad from a few years back...

Vampires! Vampires everywhere! It seems that teen girls can't get enough of vampires. A 15-year-old Florida girl was forced to recant her story of being attacked while jogging when no evidence of an attack was found where she said it had occurred. Turns out she'd be engaged in "vampire-based fantasy biting" with a 19-year-old boy, and made up the story of the attack in order to explain the bite-marks to her mom. Now she's been charged with making a false report to deputies. That's gotta bite...

Okay, one more time: In this age of internet social sites, be careful what you put on line. A government official in England tweeted on Twitter about being hungover at work. Her tweet got picked up by the press and quoted in the newspapers. She sued, claiming violation of "a reasonable right to expect privacy" on Twitter. Really? Yeah, the court said that Twitter messages are not private. So, be careful of what you tweet!

Okay, folks, really, there are some things you just do not report to the cops!

Times are not good in Detroit. Unemployment is high, the economy is in the tank, and people need something to help bring a sense of community pride back to the Motor City. Something like a statue to the hero of a dystopian film from the 1980's set in the Detroit of Tomorrow. That's right, the want a statue of RoboCop erected across from the abandoned and vacant Michigan Central Station. (Detroit has lost half it's population since the 1950's) Well, if Philly can have Rocky, then Detroit can have RoboCop, I say!

It seems that an art form, popular in the Victorian era, is gaining new converts in New York City. In face, a recent class at a local art gallery sold out in four hours at $45 per student. The art form is known as "anthropomorphic taxidermy". Yes, taxidermy. Specifically, anthropomorphic taxidermy dresses stuffed rodents in clothes and arranges them into scenes from everyday life. Taxidermy as art? Somewhere there's a vindicated red-neck laughing...

Fans of mysteries, both real and fictional, know that there are really only three motives for murder: passion, money, or to cover-up a crime. A Chicago-area 16-year-old burglar is already a cold and calculating killer. During a recent break in, according to the police report, he looked at the fish tank and told his accomplices, "We can’t leave any witnesses," and proceeded to poison the three goldfish with hot sauce. The boy is charged with residential burglary and cruelty to animals. Dude, really? I don't think the fish were gonna talk, y'know? (For some reason, I suspect there may have been drugs involved...)

And the Nuttiness goes on and on...

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Thursday, February 10, 2011

The Squirrel's Nut Cache - 2/10/2011

The Nut Cache - a collection of recent things I found interesting, or amusing, or nutworthy.

I carry an organ donor card in my wallet, as, I'm sure, do many of you. Once God has determined that I no longer need my heart, longs, corneas, or whatever, I'm more than happy to see them used by someone else, if needed. Many of us know people who's lives have been prolonged by the transplant of donated organs. But now, from Rome, comes this report that Joseph "Benny the Rat" Ratzinger, a long-time vocal proponent of organ donations, is now too "holy" to have his organs passed to others after his demise. I wonder if the Dalai Lama is an organ donor?

Okay, let's get the silly Romanist superstition out of the way and move on to other odd and funny bits. From Dearborn Heights, Michigan, comes this tale of the "miraculous" appearance of the figure of a woman seen in a chunk of ice formed from a dripping faucet. As we've discussed before, recognizing the human face or figure in random natural formations, such as melted wax from a candle, ice flows from a leaky faucet, and grilled-cheese sandwiches is called "Pareidolia." It's not a miracle, it's just what lets you see Dumbo in a cloud as you lay on your back in the grass on a warm summer's day...

Oh, okay, okay... one more on the Romanists... It seems that there is now an iPhone app for those times when you just can't make it to confession. You're supposed to keep track of your sins on you iPhone, so you can let your priest know about them later. I wonder how many people will mess up the app and end up tweeting their sins or posting their confession as their Facebook status? This could get very amusing...

When robbing a bank, the miscreants, if they are any kind of smart at all, will do something to disguise their identity: hats, glasses, fashionable boots... yes, I said "fashionable boots." Since last July, Federal and State law enforcement people have been trying to capture the elusive "Tootsie Bandit" who robbed banks dressed as a woman. Well, they think they've finally caught their "man." You'd think a guy dressed as a woman would be easier to catch, but, alas, we are talking California...

From fashionable shod bandits, we now turn to just plain dumb criminals. Listen, when you rob a house, it really isn't a good idea to plug your cell phone in to charge. And it is an even worse idea to actually leave your plugged-in cell phone behind when you depart with your ill-gotten loot. At least the dumb ones are easy to catch!

From the Quis custodiet ipsos custodes? department comes a story from Cleveland, Ohio, of a schoolyard beating, an arrest, a trial, and a ticked-off jury. It took the jury less than 30 minutes of deliberation to issue a finding of "Not Guilty" in the trial of 19-year-old Demrick McCloud. Jurors were so annoyed by the total lack of evidence against Mr. McCloud that several of them want to donate the $100 they were paid for serving on the jury to him. Several are also writing letters to the police and the prosecutors for the shoddy job they did in the investigation. Indeed, 9 of the 12 jurors doubt that the schoolyard assault even took place. It doesn't seem that the police did their job at all. "A policeman's job is only easy in a police state." - Charlton Heston as Mike Vargas in Touch of Evil, Universal Pictures, 1958. Who will guard the guardians, indeed?

When you take a taxi or hired car to the airport, always make sure you double check the charges. Tony Chan of Hong Kong didn't pay much attention when he paid his driver for the trip to the airport in New York in 2008. But his bank sure noticed! They phoned him to find out if he really paid over three quarters of a million dollars on a limousine. Of course, he hadn't. No problem with evidence in this case. The driver plead guilty to credit-card fraud this week. So, always check those receipts!

There's been a lot of snow across America this winter. Several big snow storms have made the news. And, from those storms, legends are born. Like David Wells of Chicago, who saw, on video from his home security cameras, of a woman "borrowing" the snow shovel off of his front steps to dig out her car. That would have been fine, except she then walked off... with his shovel. In a fit of pure evil genius, Mr. Wells decided to go bury her car in snow with his snowblower. Ah, revenge really is a dish best served cold...

Keep those Nuts and letters coming...

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Sunday, February 6, 2011

Remembering Ronald Reagan

“There are no easy answers but there are simple answers. We must have the courage to do what we know is morally right.”

– Ronald Wilson Reagan, 40th President of the United States

Today would have been Ronald Reagan’s 100th birthday. Or, as Reagan would have us say it, the 71st anniversary of his 29th birthday.

Ronald Reagan will always be "my" president.

Ronald Reagan was not president when I was born, that was Lyndon Johnson. Ronald Reagan is not the first president I can remember, that would be Richard Nixon. Since the day I was born, there have been 8 men other than Ronald Reagan who have sat in the Oval Office, but Ronald Reagan will always be “my” president.

You see, Reagan was president during those formative years of my late teens and early twenties. He was elected during my freshman year of high school, and, when he ran for reelection against Walter Mondale in 1984, was the first president I ever voted for. Reagan alone is not responsible for shaping my political philosophy; my father played a big role in that, as did books by Ayn Rand and Robert Heinlein and others; but Reagan’s beliefs were a huge influence. (My commitment to Biblical truth has further shaped my thoughts on politics, of course.) Of all the presidents who’ve served before, I’d have to say that Reagan’s politics are still the closest to my own.

During the 1990's, I had, in many ways, forgotten how much Ronald Reagan had meant to me, and to the United States. Due to the tragedy of his Alzheimer’s, he had been forced to withdraw from public life, and he wasn't in the news often. Other than the frequent mentions he got on talk radio, I didn’t think about him as I went about my daily routine.

And then, on June 5, 2004, word came of his death, and a strange sadness came over me. A sadness I’d never felt about a death outside of my own family. I knew that, though I’d never met him, I had lost someone very dear to me.

All that week, either the radio or the television was on to coverage of his life and the services that were held to honor him. I watched the thousands file past as his body lay in state at the Reagan Library in California. I cried. I explained to my then 13-year-old daughter why I was sad, and why this man had been so special. I watched as the horse-drawn caisson carried his body down Constitution Avenue to that slow, slow, painfully mournful drumbeat. I cried. I listened to the service from the National Cathedral in Washington, and watched the final service that took place during that beautiful sunset at the Regan Library in California as he was laid to rest on the evening of Friday, June 11, 2004. And I cried.

Since that time, I have become a more deliberate student of Reagan; his life, his character, and his politics. And, as I have, my respect and admiration for him has only grown more profound. Ronald Reagan wasn’t perfect, of course, no mere mortal man is, but he lived a life more admirable than most.

As we remember Ronald Reagan today, remember that, for a time, God blessed us with a very special leader, and give thanks.

Happy Birthday, Mr. President. Thank you, and God bless the United States of America.

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Saturday, February 5, 2011

The Squirrel's Nut Cache - 2/5/2011

Better late than never, here is the...

Saturday Nut Special!

The Nut Cache - a collection of recent things I found interesting, or amusing, or nutworthy.

I have watched language deteriorate throughout my lifetime. The use of words that once were rare and shocking is now all too common. And, it seems, the younger the person, the more "raw" the language. It is sad, and I would like it very much to see such language moderated at least back to a pre-1980 level. However, I think hitting a high school student with $637 in fines for cussing in school is a bit... much.

Tomorrow is Super Bowl Sunday, and countless thousands of Americans will flop down on the couch to watch the game. In many many houses, between that couch and the television will sit a table loaded with large flat cardboard boxes full of the most perfect food ever created; pizza! One Chicago-area man has taken it upon himself to see that, even while posted in war zones far from their families, many American soldiers, sailors, airmen and marines will be able to enjoy the Super Bowl over a slice a pizza, too. Huah!

Winter weather has gripped our nation. Cries of "Snowpocalypse" and "Iceagiddon" echo through the land. And yet, in the front yard of a home in Ohio, a man with a bunch of string and a garden hose used the recent cold weather to make something that, if not quite beautiful, is certainly fun and unique; a 25-foot-high ice sculpture!

We know, from Genesis 3 (Genesis 3:16 (NET)- To the woman he said, "I will greatly increase your labor pains; with pain you will give birth to children. You will want to control your husband, but he will dominate you."), that there will always be tensions between husbands and wives as we make our way through this fallen world. These are things we should strive to rise above as we learn to live in harmony with each other. Alas, An immigration officer in the UK put his wife on a terrorist watch list while she was out of the country, thus preventing her from flying home... for 3 YEARS!!! Finally, he got found out, and was fired. The article doesn't say if she ever made it back to England...

"Do you expect me to talk?" -- "No, I expect you to die, Mr. Bond!" It's like something out of a movie, an individual hangs from a wire, over hundreds of hungry alligators and crocodiles. Is it a drug gang punishing an informant? A terrorist group trying to get information out of a source? Nope, not a terrorist; it's a tourist at Alligator Farm in St. Augustine, Florida. Now, I'm wondering how long it will be before somebody realizes that dangling tasty tourists over hungry reptiles just might not really be the best of ideas?

I've only ever used valet parking once, and I recall feeling just a little nervous as I handed over the keys... and it wasn't even my car. Now, if I'd had seen this article first, I don't know if I could have done it! Now, understand, 240 km/h is about 150 mph, and that ain't slow! Just remember this the next time you hand your car keys to that smiling young man in the bright red blazer outside your favorite restaurant!

And the Nuttiness goes on and on...

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Wednesday, February 2, 2011

Frozen Squirrel on Ice

Your faithful arboreal rodent will be off-line for the next 3 days. I'm going to our Baptist association's Pastor's Retreat at Thompson Lake Baptist Camp. No internet, no phone, just a bunch of pastors in the snow. (&, yes, I'm really looking forward to it!)

Sure, it looks all nice in the photo, but don't let that picture fool you! It's a snowed in summer camp on a frozen lake right now. I'm taking my camera, so I'll post some wintery pictures when I return!

There will be no Nut Cache on Thursday. Lord willing, there will be a Saturday Nut Special!

Please pray for safe travels for all attending. Thanks!

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