Friday, November 28


Angel went fishing with her dad this evening at the Calaveras River. She was the only one to get a fish and was more than eager to show it off.

I used to fish with my dad in canals and on rivers. The most memorable trip was south of El Paso on the Rio Grande where we camped out near the beach and fished the next day. I landed a 24" carp. Quite a fight, but had to let him go. Can't remember if Dad caught anything. I think he just liked getting away from the women in his life for awhile and commune with nature's silence.

Sunday, November 23

October Surprise

Our recent trip to Paso Robles turned into a whirlwind see-fest as we attended more than a few events and reconnected with old friends, including cousin Larry. We hadn't seen each other in 15 years or more, but there wasn't a lot of catching up during a Paso Robles Inn breakfast.

Larry has been a custom cabinet craftsman for many moons and still loves what he's doing. He was working on a $100,000 contract for someone in Paso. That's a whole lot of cabinets - but, hey, it's Paso Robles, the land of the free and the home of the rich.

Thanks to cousin Bruce for this picture.

Friday, November 21

$1.69 A Gallon for Gas

Time to visit Stockton, CA, and fill your tank for less than half of what you paid a few months ago. Personally, I'll gladly pay over $4.00 a gallon if the stock market and economy were back to where they were a few months ago.

Now I have a full tank of cheap gas, but still not enough cash to go anywhere!

Thursday, November 20

Care Package

Being surrounded by a caring family is one of life's greatest blessings. These are loved ones you can trust to be there in your inevitable hour of need --- even if they get the call at 2 o'clock in the morning. And you are more than willing to lend a hand when family calls for help.

There is another family that is willing to help. This family will lift your needs in prayer, encourage you when you're going through a rough time emotionally, and understand your spiritual struggles. I'm speaking of those members of a Sunday School class or home Bible study.

Maybe it's time for you to receive a care package.

Thursday, November 13

Aging Equipment

I run various and sundry equipment where I work, including this 27 year old continuous collator. What used to run a formidable segment of our product pie, this poor piece of engineered machinery is in semi-retirement, thanks to the medical world graduating from multi-part computer forms to single laser sheets and virtual records saved on servers. On the positive side, since it is used less and less each year, the old Harris 750 is still in great shape, and when cleaned up looks nearly new, unlike our delapidated presses of similar vintage.

New or nearly new is good. Like a new or newer car compared to my '63 Chevy pickup. But on the other hand, the old stuff is paid for and doesn't need smogged. You can always find a positive near a negative, I guess.

Sunday, November 9

Yo Ho Ho and a Bottle

There are few reminders of vintage transportation in the jet age. Oh, you can still ride a horse or drive an old tractor in the Pioneer Day Parade, but how many would like to sail across the ocean in a 2-masted ketch? This ship is so small you can spit from stem to stern - against the wind! A rich mixture of courage and faith would have been necessary to embark in this bark and the thousands who have been lost at sea will attest to it if they could.

The replica ship, The Hawaiian Chieftain, sails the eastern Pacific to raise funds so it can sail the eastern Pacific. Maybe it goes elsewhere, but I doubt it. Even with all of the new-fangled navigational additions, trying to negotiate a storm would be the height of heroism - or worse. It looks seaworthy while in port, moored to a solid dock, on a river or in a still harbor. But out in the open mouth of the high seas, get out your prayer book.

I'm only kidding, really. The young people who man and woman this finely crafted showpiece, love the adventure and opportunity to do something few of their friends will. They'll be able to share some great stories about how bad the food was, the whales they saw and storms they've survived.

Wednesday, November 5

Thank You, Mr. Obama!

My two cents: Had it not been for a huge turnout and vote for Barack Obama, who won 60% of the California vote, Proposition 8 would most likely have lost. The huge voter turnout of minorities for Barack undoubtedly included their strongly Biblical view of marriage. That, combined with a larger than usual evangelical and conservative vote [those bitter, gun-toting religious wackoes], helped it pass with a 4 point margin.

The map is self-explanatory and shows a simplified demographic of counties that voted for and against the proposition, along with percentage strengths.

So, thanks again to our new President [and, of course to the God of Presidents] and his army of volunteers who registered new voters in California!

Unfortunately, this spiritual battle is far from over as all such warfare is destined to be in this world.

Saturday, November 1

Belling the Cat

An Aesop Fable:

Long ago, the mice had a general council to consider what measures they could take to outwit their common enemy, the Cat. Some said this, and some said that; but at last a young mouse got up and said he had a proposal to make, which he thought would meet the case. "You will all agree," said he, "that our chief danger consists in the sly and treacherous manner in which the enemy approaches us. Now, if we could receive some signal of her approach, we could easily escape from her. I venture, therefore, to propose that a small bell be procured, and attached by a ribbon round the neck of the Cat. By this means we should always know when she was about, and could easily retire while she was in the neighbourhood."

This proposal met with general applause, until an old mouse got up and said: "That is all very well, but who is to bell the Cat?" The mice looked at one another and nobody spoke. Then the old mouse said:

"It is easy to propose impossible remedies."