The Captain's (B)log

Archive for the category “Religion”

Christmas Observations


I support the true meaning of Christmas as Jesus birthday etc… but I’m here today to talk about pretty much everything else 😛

Christmas was best when I used to believe in Santa Claus… what I wouldn’t give to be 18 again… I still hold a grudge against the chubby, nonexistent charlatan. Santa is Satan misspelled…I’m on to you, Fatman. YAY! Let’s wrap cheap electric lights around our dead indoor tree and get ready for the guy to break into the house while we’re sleeping!  It may be hard to believe by the tone of this post but… I actually love Christmas. No matter how old you are, bubble wrap is pseudo gunfire and an empty Christmas wrapping paper tube is still a sword. What else could inspire someone to spend an ungodly amount of time untangling a 6 dollar strand of Christmas lights they bought 10 years ago.

And what is this ‘Happy Holiday‘ crap? Dave Barry put it best when said “In the old days, it was not called the Holiday Season; the Christians called it ‘Christmas’ and went to church; the Jews called it ‘Hanukka‘ and went to synagogue; the atheists went to parties and drank. People passing each other on the street would say ‘Merry Christmas!’ or ‘Happy Hanukka!’ or (to the atheists) ‘Look out for the wall!”

I plan on going and getting a real tree this week. I’ve never had one before because my parents didn’t believe in putting one up… hope it doesn’t end up like Amy Winehouse. Dead, 5 ft 6, and surrounded by needles before Christmas. There is an upside though. At least I’m not so poor that I have to decorate my Christmas tree car air freshener.

Ah Christmas… with your confusing carols (We Three Kings of Porridge and Tar? Recently corrected on that one) and frantic last-minute shopping. If not for Christmas companies would have to invent another holiday causing one and all to spend more than they make all year in one month.

In conclusion to this random escapade into the red, green and white rainbow that is Deember 25th, I bid you Merry Christmas. Should you lack mistletoe… may you always kiss under the influence.

X4NCWM32RJ66

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On this day sixty years ago…


April Fools! Let’s get married.
or
Let’s get married. April Fools!

It doesn’t take a neurosurgeon or a big CAN YOU SPOT THE DIFFERENCE section in a coloring book to realize the opposite nature of these two statements. What I am about to relate to you is a personal story of my family. A story my grandma told me years ago. The story of her marriage to my grandpa. It’s pretty short, sweet and simple.

Before

After

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

My Grandma was in a bad situation in her home, had run away multiple times and needed to get out. She had been seeing my Grandpa for about a year. They first met at a Bible Study and hit it off immediately. I am told that he was a charming man back in the day (compared his slightly cantankerous self of late). To make a long story short they planned to get married in a year or so after they could save up and start right but her family situation forced the decision upon them. It was April Fools Day, 1951. Unaware of the date and caught up in the drama that was their life at the time, they headed to the local chapel. Their request to be married was met with a goodhearted laugh by the minister but he decided to play along.

The pastor didn’t realize he was conducting a real wedding until the end of the ceremony. My grandparents headed off on their honey moon leaving a bewildered and somewhat embarrassed man of the church. This very day marks 60 years of “hard marriage” in payment of their vows that cool April morning. They currently live less than a half hour drive away from my house and have been the best grandparents anyone could ask for. Grandma is ALWAYS encouraging me to chase my impossible dreams and Grandpa (the eternal realist) is making sure there’s a good plan in place to do so. I love them both very much.

I am posting this in honor of such character, devotion and love that made the inception of my life possible and have inspired me along it’s course. Happy Anniversary Grandma and Grandpa

(|): Welcome To The Monkey House :(|)


Yesterday I attended a speaking conference with some good friends of mine, one of whom was competing. I will probably be in on the fall edition so I went to get a feel for the competition, amount of spectators present and to meet people but in the end it was a debate I had with one of the keynote speakers that was most memorable.

Michael’ (as we will call him because that was his real name 😀 ) has a Masters Degree in Psychological Counseling or some related branch thereof. He attempted a humorous speech entitled “Welcome To The Monkey House” and, after citing the title of his speech as a book by Kurt Vonnegut, proceeded to explain how animals (giving citations of vampire bats, hippos and wolves… what could go together better than vampire bats, hippos and wolves?) have a moral code, a system for right and wrong and imposed consequences. He referred to all of us in the room as mindless apes and from there jumped to the conclusion (so obvious to him) that we humans derived all sense of right and wrong from the evolutionary whim of the animal kingdom. Here I’d like to make two points.

#1- I’m a Christian. I believe in a Creator and intelligent design and as such I find it quite insulting to insinuate that my great great great great great (ad infinitum) grandma was a self replicating piece of crap. Isn’t that like the worst “Yo Momma” joke of all time?

#2- Isn’t it usually an insulting term to call someone a mindless ape? Now I KNOW that many of you will disagree with the content of this post (it’s the world we live in) but this blogger isn’t afraid of controversy or its repercussions. You guys have class and can debate in a worthwhile, discovering manner. Don’t prove me wrong.

Now, (getting back to my story) I had the opportunity to seek him out afterwards and after tapping him on the shoulder saying (and I quote) “Very intriguing speech and delivery. The only downside is that I disagree with 110% of what you said and the thought process that got you there.”

He humored me and within seconds a friendly conversation had escalated to heated debate. We took it out of the conference room, up the elevator and into the building’s foyer tracking back to the origin of moral law, the contradiction between evolution, Divine creation and the ever-present law of entropy etc. I won’t bore you with the tit for tat details but in the end the argument was reduced to this.

Me: “So you’re saying that no one actually knows how nothing became something?”

Him: “Well, the cellular structure of self replicating amoebas…”

Me (slightly interrupting): “So you have no answer for the beginning? The inception of everything we know?”

Him: “Well no one knows that but if I’m given a choice of A) A beginning to the world involving matter alone versus B) Matter + a divine being, I’m going to choose A every time.”

Me: “So you’re saying the world created itself? You see this wall? You said earlier that you and I could agree that this wall exists. It’s a fact and not an opinion correct?”

Him: “Yes…”

Me: “When you looked at this wall, you didn’t say ‘Oh what a random product of spontaneous molecular combustion! I must report this as the eighth wonder of the world!’ did you?”

Him (laughing): “No, I didn’t.”

Me: “It stands to reason that someone built this wall right? You have a degree, you know how complicated a cell is. Things like a cell and this wall don’t just happen. You’re criticizing faith and yet you don’t even know how ‘the big bang’ started’. It takes every bit as much faith for you to believe what you do as for me to believe what I do. What if you’re wrong? What if my answer to how the world started is more plausible than you drawing a blank? ”

Him (*thinking* and then): “Well it IS a possibility but not one I want to believe.”

Me: “That’s what it comes down to, I’ve made my point and that’s all I can do. Nice talking with ya Michael, gotta run!”

My ride was waiting for me and that was all the time I had but both the conversation and the pondering look on Mike’s face as I left him gave me a satisfaction peculiar to my usual arguments. I wasn’t trying to ‘convert’ him, far from it. I was testing his belief and sharpening my knowledge and communication skills by asking and provoking questions. I always hold to the Dale Carnegie quote that “A man convinced against his will is of the same opinion still.” Debating always has, and always will be, an adventure and an opportunity to devastate the obvious.

P.S. The day they make a monkey out of me is the day I speed date Betty White, direct a hostile takeover of Timbuktu, stop loving peanut butter and start liking fried eggs.

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