Wednesday, February 21, 2018

First Swirly Random Thoughts of 2018

Silver lining time: I liked the bass in Fergie's rendition of The Stars Spangled Banner

My cat drinks out of the faucet, but won't drink out of the water fountain I just bought him

My transvocalizations is complete. I am an alto.

RIP Billy Graham.  I really expected you to Rapturize, not die.

Sunday, January 21, 2018

It's Okay! Tell Me About It!

A friend told me that she worries about offending people on social media. Immediately, I realized that I worry about the same thing. That's why I haven't written any blogs lately.

But enough being afraid. I'm going to start writing whatever is on my mind again.

Today's Topic: Why are We Afraid to Speak of Our Own Joys and Troubles Post Crisis?

Its been rough around here the past couple of months. Briefly, the largest fire in California history burned many homes; a heavy rain (1/2 an inch in 5 minutes) followed, and the mountain (Fine. Mudslide.) came down in a neighboring town that killed twenty-three people, destroyed property, and closed the freeway. It's been horrific for them.

Aaaand...The smell of survivor guilt is strong around here.

It seems to have become forbidden to speak of our own joys and sorrows. Sentences start with I shouldn't complain...Happy occurences are simply not introduced. For example:

  • I watched a grandmother, starting to speak of (and clearly worried about) the health of her grandchild, swallow her anxiety and say "I shouldn't talk —Look at the poor people in Montecito!" Does cutting that conversation short help the people in Montecito?
  • New home-owner friends cancelled their plans for a house warming party. Cancelled. Not Postponed. Both kicking themselves for wanting to celebrate at a time like this. How does not celebrating speed up the rebuild of Montecito?
So, let's clear the air. I understand stepping back and being grateful for our good fortunes. I understand that our own problems may seem petty in comparison to what happened in Montecito. That big and small celebrations may seem like pouring salt on a wound.

But we can't change what happened. Besides, the freeway is suppose to open tomorrow! And  if it doesn't, feel free to tell me about it. It's okay!

Sunday, November 19, 2017

Hoffman Wedding Homily

In October of 2017, I was tasked to write a wedding homily. I worked hard on it. I asked one person if she thought I should post it, and she said yes. So here it is.

Good Afternoon. Please be seated.

On This Momentous Occasion: The Solemn Sacrament of Rebecca Elizabeth’s and Holly Marie’s marriage; I’d like to open my remarks, with the tag line, of a vintage Chocolate and Peanut Butter Cup commercial:

“Two great tastes that go great together.”

That ad campaign was a series of commercials portraying different scenarios of amusing, yet accidental mixing of peanut butter and chocolate: all concluding with the same Eureka moment: that this crazy combination of peanut butter and chocolate results in a delicious tasting candy!

But those were commercials…a fun way to introduce a product that had probably been in the works for years, before going on the market.  Becky and Holly were friends for years before they got together. Was their coming together a happy accident? Or, was it divine intervention?  Ecclesiastes 3 says, “Everything in God’s Time.”

Thus, to paraphrase Ecclesiastes, “It’s time for Hecky.”

I love these girls; I’ve known each of them individually for many years now, and while both have many good qualities, I would say that Holly’s calm demeanor, and Becky’s encouraging manner gives a person a sense of belonging and confidence.  Both girls have an uncanny way of making people feel like they matter.   

So, here we are, 2 great girls who go great together, and love each other unconditionally.   Their long friendship has evolved to a deep, abiding… transcendent love; yet they know and accept the little annoyances about each other.  But is that all you need to make a long and happy marriage? 

It’s a good start. But as the cliché goes, Life has its challenges. Sometimes, seemingly insurmountable challenges.

From my experience, I think the important thing to remember is, when problems arise, you need to figure out if the trouble is external or internal.  Let’s say that ants are attacking the chocolate peanut butter cups. This is an extremely disgusting and horrible problem! Don’t Panic!  This buggy situation is known as an external problem, and solutions are readily available. For example, put the chocolate peanut butter cups in the freezer.  Not only are you protecting the precious confection from creepy, crawly, invaders; you are also changing the texture of the candy -- which tastes equally well, if not better than room temperature candy. What can seem like a problem, may actually be a new way of looking at things.   However, chocolate peanut butter cups melting in the freezer is internal. Or maybe it’s not.  Maybe you just need to turn the freezer’s thermostat down. 

Seriously, if problems are internal, you need to dig deep and remember why you love each other, and why you started your lives together.

Right now, you may be thinking, Duh, Deedz, but at some point, you are most likely going need to call on God, to help you through a crisis.  I really do like the following from Corinthians: If I have not charity, If love does not flow from me, I am nothing. 

Or, from Ruth: “Entreat me not to leave thee, or to return from following after thee: for whither thou goest, I will go…

There’s a reason why Corinithians and Ruth are read in so many weddings. Both Bible verses are reminders, that your bride, or your broom, is the prize. Your True Norths. 

In the end, it’s your lives, your marriage; your family.  Girls, trust me. Everyone has advice on how to have a happy marriage and family.  You will have to find your own way. 

But, with your love for each other, and your unwavering faith in God, I truly believe that your lives together, will be full of joy and happiness, for a very. Long. time.