Wednesday, December 14, 2011

Florida Vacation, 2011

I was able, by the Grace of God, go to Florida for a short vacation. This was precipitated by the news that my nephew, Neil, was going to be graduating from college. It was also a welcomed respite from the Colorado cold and snow!

Neil graduated from the University of Southern Florida with a Bachelors degree in Psychology. I told him if he needed a job I'd teach him how to drive a truck.

His lovely (and especially rambunctios) wife, Marisol, is expected to graduate in May from USF as an RN.

Of course, while in Florida, I got to see my dear olde Mother. Nursing home living does not do a person well. She has dropped in weight to under 100#! It's no wonder that my Lady friend took care of her Mother at home for the last few years of her life. But, it was good to see Mom again.

My other nephew, Stephen, was in from Columbus, Ohio, along with his lady friend. And the boy's dad and his wife were there also. At the graduation party there were about 20 family members and close friends of Neil's. It was nice. The balloons sucked.

The weather was warm, in the 70's all week, down in the 50's at night. Got to go down to the Gulf, had lots of great food, and went swimming. All-in-all it was a great week.

On the way home I got to see, from the air, Anna Maria Island, Rotten Ralph's restaurant, the pier, the Sunshine Skyway bridge, Tampa, and St.Pete. The airplane back to Denver circled around downtown Atlanta, so we got to see it from the south, east and north. There was some turbulence coming into Colorado, but nothing the pilots couldn't handle.

Now I get to go back to work. Goodie.

Wednesday, November 16, 2011

Abraham's Sacrifice

“Prove all things; hold fast that which is good”,
1Thessalonians 5:21
“Question everything”, Einstein

It started out as a curiosity.

You may know the story, but follow this compendium as it is written to get the full impact of the point I wish to make.

I remember reading in my Bible in the book of Genesis about Abram wanting a son by his wife Sarai, but because she was “barren” she could not bear one. So she reasoned that if she was going to have a son, that maybe she could have one by her Egyptian handmaid Hagar (Gen 16:2). “…And gave her to her husband Abram to be his wife.” So Abram went in to Hagar and she conceived.

Then, because of strife between Sarai and Hagar, Hagar fled from Abram’s camp to get away from Sarai. Resting by a fountain of water in the wilderness, an angel of the Lord had an exchange with Hagar, and told her “Return to thy mistress, and submit thyself under her hands.” (Gen 16:9) “And the angel of the Lord said unto her, I will multiply thy seed exceedingly, that it shall not be numbered for multitude.” (Gen 16:10)

Hence Hagar bore Abram a son, and they named him Ishmael. Abram was 86 years olde.

“And when Abram was ninety years old and nine, the Lord appeared to Abram…“ (Gen 17:1) “And I will make my covenant between me and thee, and will multiply thee exceedingly.” (Gen 17:2) “…my covenant is with thee, and thou shalt be a father of many nations.” (Gen 17:4) From that point forward, Abram was called Abraham.
“As for Sarai thy wife, thou shalt not call her name Sarai, but Sarah (princess) shall her name be.” (Gen 17:15) “And I will bless her, and give thee a son also of her: yea, I will bless her, and she shall be a mother of nations:…” (Gen 17: 16)

So when Abraham was 100 years olde, Sarah bore him a son, and they named him Isaac.

This is where my curiosity started. In the process of researching this subject I came across lots of interesting information. In the end I didn’t get the answer I was looking for; I got something better!

There are going to be overlaps, so I will take this part by part.

In Genesis chapter 22, God calls to Abraham to take Isaac to a designated mountain and sacrifice him. For Abraham to take his son and sacrifice him would set an undesirable precedent: that is being human sacrifices. So then, “why would God "test" Abraham to sacrifice Isaac while prohibiting child sacrifice to the god Molech?” (ref 1) Which begs the question: “Why did God punish the Canaanites for child sacrifice, when He personally ORDERED Abraham to do it?! See Glenn Miller” (ref 2)

One of two things would have to happen: either God would intercede and the son would not be sacrificed; or if Abraham did as he was told, then God would raise the son from the dead. As you probably know, the former occurred, for if the latter had, that would have justified the Canaanites child sacrifices, and lessened the impact of Jesus’ Resurrection.

Ishmael was Abraham’s firstborn. God always demanded the first fruit of the faithful’s labors. So I wondered, if Ishmael was the first-born of Abraham, why didn’t Abraham take him to sacrifice?

I was talking religion with a tanker driver trainee, Marwan, who is Muslim, and he told me the story about Abraham’s sacrifice as he knew it from the Quran. Abraham heard God, and went to Egypt to get Ishmael for the sacrifice. Abraham did this because Ishmael was the firstborn.

Here are John Gill's comments on only son: "thine only son Isaac; for, though Ishmael was his son, he was a son by his maid, by his concubine, and not by his wife; Isaac was his only legitimate son, his only son by his lawful wife Sarah; the only son of the promise, his only son, in whom his seed was to be called: " (ref 2)

But in Genesis 16:2, it says: “…And gave her to her husband Abram to be his wife.”

This got me wondering about the veracity of the King James Bible. But as Glenn Miller put it: “Actually, you are missing what we ALL are – most of the story!
“The story in Genesis 22--The "Binding of Isaac"-- is a classic case of a narrator selecting ONLY the details needed to make his point--and ONLY addressing his own authorial question. The passage is so focused on the teeth-gritting commitment of Abraham and his absolute confidence that he would NOT lose his divinely given son Isaac, that the explanatory details are stripped out of the bare events to drive his point home. There is virtually NO dialogue or background given in the passage--highly unusual.” (ref 1)

The Answer: Muslim, Christian or Jew, the story of Abraham’s Sacrifice is NOT about which son was sacrificed, but God’s covenant with Abraham! It is about God making a promise to a man, and keeping it! It is about a man, Abraham, having faith, listening to God and obeying what He tells him!

The Better Answer: God made a promise to our Forefathers that they would get their religious freedom in a land that would become the United States of America!

From the Declaration of Independence:
We hold these truths to be self-evident, that all men are created equal, that they are endowed by their Creator with certain unalienable Rights, that among these are Life, Liberty and the pursuit of Happiness.—(ref 3)

Bill of Rights, Amendment I:
Congress shall make no law respecting an establishment of religion, or prohibiting the free exercise thereof; (ref 3)

The point here being, considering the condition of our country at this writing, “We The People” need to accept the Gift that God has given us, that being our country, and the freedom and blessings associated with it. He upheld His end of the deal to allow us to live where we can have religious freedom. Now it is up to us to uphold our end of the deal and exercise our right to religious freedom.

Muslim, Christian or Jew, we are all descendents of Abraham, united by faith in the one God. All persons that believe in God need to unite together in prayer and ask Him to correct the mistakes that we as a country have made, and to restore that which He meant for us to have. We need to humble ourselves before God.

Statistically, 84% of our country believes in God; that means 16% don’t. So why are we, the majority, succumbing to the rantings of a overly-vocal few? We have bent to the will of man, instead of obeying the Will of God. We have allowed God to be removed from our public offices and schools. We have turned our back on God! Politician or commoner, it is high time for us to obey God’s commandment(s) or face the consequences. Ever hear of Sodom and Gomorrah?

As Abraham had faith in God to fulfill His covenant with him, “We the People of the United States” need to be like Abraham, to have and exercise our Faith in God.

And pray that we aren’t too late.

Addendum: Wisdom that was left off from the original.

Part of the problems that we are experiencing in this country is because the people that we have elected into office over the years are more interested in fulfilling the wants and needs of either their peers, or of their constituents. They have forsaken the teachings of their parents and of the Bible to satisfy their own cravings.

If decisions by the lawmakers were based upon Biblical teachings, then we would not have Roe Vs Wade, welfare, and a slew of other undesirable after-effects of their actions.

The politicians that are running our country need to now embrace the one true God. The time is coming that those who shun God will have to answer for their insolence.

“We The People” need to elect only those who fear God and will act accordingly. Beware the decisions you make at election time.



Wednesday, September 14, 2011

Gary is gone

A tribute to Gary Agee

Way back when, the Boss told me that he had hired a new driver, Gary. I almost never get to see the day driver(s), so I thought the Boss was yanking my chain about hiring a new guy. A figment of his imagination, if you will. Eventually, Gary appeared. He was real!

As I understand it, Gary had worked with the Boss at another company years ago, and then later worked for the Boss. He then went to work in the oil fields, hauling crude oil. Eventually he got tired of that, we needed another good driver, so Gary came to work for us.

He was a driver’s driver: confident around trucks, willing to learn, and very capable.

Then his son-in-law died. About a month later the family all decided to go up into the mountains. The stress of his son-in-law’s death, smoking, and the high altitude probably all contributed to Gary having to be rushed down out of the hills to a hospital. He was diagnosed with pneumonia. He almost died.

Seven arduous weeks later, Gary was permitted last Thursday by his doctor to come back to work. Yay!

I caught up with him at one of our stores and he sounded and looked good! Optimistic and happy to be back at work. I encouraged him to enjoy being back, and to take his time until he got back into the swing of things. I also told him that God had given him a second chance and to not blow it. He agreed.

Sunday evening, according to reports, Gary was north-bound on I-25 when he exited to US-34 east-bound. It is said that he took the corner too fast, the truck flipped on its side, exploded and burned. Gary didn’t make it. Makes me wonder.

Fuel Haulers mourn the loss of another one of their own.

We’re going to miss you Gary. Take care and God bless.

Monday, September 12, 2011

A Reason, A Season, A Lifetime

A Reason, a Season or a Lifetime.

You never know when your guardian angel will be there for you so I have to try...

After you have finished reading this, you will know the reason it was given to you.

Here goes:

People come into your life for a Reason, a Season or a Lifetime.
When you know which one it is, you will know what to do for that person.
When someone is in your life for a Reason, it is usually to meet a need you have expressed.
They have come to assist you through a difficulty, to provide you with guidance and support,
to aid you physically, emotionally or spiritually.
They may seem like a Godsend and they are.
They are there for the Reason you need them to be.

Then, without any wrongdoing on your part or at an inconvenient time, this person will say or do
something to bring the relationship to an end.
Sometimes they die. Sometimes they walk away.
Sometimes they act up and force you to take a stand.

What we must realize is that our need has been met, our desire fulfilled, their work is done.
The prayer you sent up has been answered and now it is time to move on.

Some people come into your life for a Season, because your turn has come to share,
grow or learn.
They bring you an experience of peace or make you laugh.
They may teach you something you have never done.
They usually give you an unbelievable amount of joy.

Believe it, it is real. But only for a Season.

Lifetime relationships teach you Lifetime lessons, things you must build upon in order to have a
solid emotional foundation.
Your job is to accept the lesson, love the person and put what you have learned to use in all
other relationships and areas of your life.

It is said that love is blind but friendship is clairvoyant.
Thank you for being a part of my life. . . .
. . Whether you were a Reason, a Season or a Lifetime.

Origin and author unknown.

Sunday, August 21, 2011

I got "The Sign"

I was heading up I-25 in heavy weekend traffic, watching the idiots in front of me.

A small, green sedan pulled up along side of me to my left. I didn't think anything about it, especially since I was busy watching the traffic. Then, out of the corner of my eye, I noticed movement from the car that wasn't common. I looked over and a cute blond was holding up a sign that said "Hi". It was a pre-printed sign, about a foot across, white with black lettering. I chuckled and waved at her. She then held her arm out the window, pumping it up and down with a closed fist, signaling that she wanted me to toot my horn, so I obliged.

The Dumb Ass in the lane to my right almost ran off the road.

The blond and her male driver then sped up, waving as they drove away.

I laughed at this interaction all the way to my delivery location. It had been years since somebody had done something like that. I appreciated their friendliness, especially in the middle of traffic.

Thursday, July 28, 2011


Well, Pita is gone.

She came into my life one day as I was putting milk away in the refrigerator. I noticed that one of my bottles of tea that I had made had fallen over and some of the contents had drained out of the container. So while I was on my hands and knees cleaning out the bottom of the refrigerator, I felt something crawl across my foot.

Not being the jumpy sort, I looked down and saw a brownish-grey rat staring back at me. She skittered off to around the back of the sofa, but was easily coaxed out.

She was well fed, ignoring the food and water I offered her. She must have belonged to somebody, but nobody fessed up. What was I to do? Flush her down the toilet? Gracious, NO! So being the good steward, I went and got a cage, bottle, bedding, a ball, food, and who knows what else. I figured I'd take care of her until somebody came and got her.

The circumstances by which she entered into my life prompted me to name her "Pita", short for Pain In The Arse! It was a very appropriate name.

Being a rat, I couldn't just let her run freely around the apartment, since rats have an inclination to gnaw, chew, chomp, and raise hate-and-discontent with printer wiring. I found this out the hard way. Fortunately, I am adept at repairs...

Pita would sit on my lap while I was eating dinner and eat with me. I could always tell when she was full, because she would stop eating (unlike me!), snuggle down, and go to sleep. Like children, cats and puppies, she was cute when she was asleep!

As time progressed she slowed down, just sitting in her ball when I put her in there. More apt to sleep than to come out to play. Finally, age and rat maladies took their toll.

I keep trying to tell myself that it was only a rat. But she was a very cute rat. I am going to miss her.

Saturday, April 2, 2011

April Fools Day

Just after midnight I realized what the date was: April 1st, 2011. The dawning realization that it was April Fools Day suddenly made my night that much more interesting!

Oh, my job is plenty interesting, what with running the mountains in snow storms and having to deal with all of the associated problems. Or driving around Metro Denver just after the bars close. At least at 2:00 in the morning when you see somebody driving stupid, you KNOW why they're driving stupid. At 9:00 on a weekday morning when they're driving stupid, it's scary.

Anyway, I got my mind to quit wandering, sit down, shut up, and hang on, and figure out what I could do to get the maximum amount of mileage from an April Fools stunt. Then it hit me! I was laughing too hard to hit it back, so I ran with it. My divorce took more than a year to resolve, and many people have asked me if I would marry again. That was the stunt.

I text ten people, including my kids, and told them: "I'm getting married."

My Sister responded with: "I'm getting sick..."
Bob responded with: "WTF?"
Michael and Krystal thought I'd gone over the deep end.
Bill was confused.
Then they all were mad at me when I text them back: "Happy April first".

Not surprisingly, and kudos to them, Tanya and Terence knew it was a prank and that I'm full of $hit! My kids, what do you expect?!?!?! They're used to Dear Olde Dad doing something like that to them.

All told, I got a good 24+ hours of humor out of this!

I have 365 days to get ready for next year and to top this year. Wish me luck! It's going to be tough.

Saturday, February 12, 2011


Published Greeley Tribune September 7, 2001

Death. The first time I encountered the phenomenon was with my Father. We were living in Northglenn at the time, and I was only 14 years old. He had come home the day before from a sales trip, and had taken on repainting the trim around the house.

I was ‘helping’ him when the weather turned nasty, and I started taking stuff back into the house. It couldn’t have been more than a couple of minutes when my sister screamed. I ran outside to find my Father on the ground, collapsed next to his car. He was gone, the victim of a heart attack.

Death became personal in 1982, when my world was turned upside-down with the diagnosis of a broken neck and consequent surgery. Wearing a halo brace, I was feeling really low one day, and I sat myself down at the dining room table with a loaded pistol and a note pad in front of me. I wanted to write down how I felt, about not being able to get around like I used to, not being able to work, my wife being pregnant with our first child, etc. Because of everything, I felt like less of a man. I started writing, and soon found myself writing a poem about Death. Incidentally, it took me 20 years to realize, as of last November, that The Lord was with me that day, but that’s another story, if not a book.

I have talked to many people who have considered suicide. One common denominator amongst them is they regularly think about it. Why? Because ‘It’ is the only constant in their lives. Look around your life and see the way things change, every day, even by the minute. It can be overwhelming.

From my perspective, a person who contemplates suicide has done so over a period of time, so there are indications of the impending event. It’s not like a person wakes up one morning with the Klingon philosophy on their mind: “Today is a good day to die”. 20/20 hindsight is Man’s greatest attribute, and those that are left in the wake of a suicide say things like “I didn’t think he’d do it”, or “I should have seen it coming”.

But people die every day from occurrences that are not of their doing. Because of the unexpected suddenness, people should be prepared. Sounds rather contradictory, but it makes sense.

First, and I’m sure you’ve all heard it before, you should have a will and life insurance. I want to take this a step further. If you can afford it, have a small life insurance policy entrusted to a friend, or somebody who can front the monies. That way, in the event of your death, people who cannot otherwise afford to travel to your funeral can do so with the proceeds from the policy. Disclaimer: Always check with your financial and legal consultants before doing anything.

In a letter to Dear Abby the writer was bemoaning the fact that an old friend had died. Because she hadn’t heard from her friend in a while, she set out to find out if there was a problem, and consequently was informed by the family about the death. Similarly, I had a Great Aunt that had died, and one day when I inquired about her health, was told she had died six months before! Obviously non-notification is a common problem.

So, make a list of the people you want informed upon your demise. This can be incorporated into the will, left with a friend or the executor of the estate. See disclaimer.

Finally, have the last word. Literally. Make up tapes or CD’s for the people you LOVE, telling them about the way you feel towards them. Tell your kids how proud you are, your spouse about the wonderful life you had, etc. Use your imagination and be nice; This may be your lasting legacy.

And remember, someday it may be too late to tell them you LOVE them, so do it today.

I Love my kids:
Tanya, Robbie and Trinity;
Michael, Krystal and Colton; and last but not least
Terence, our Army brat!

Love you too, Kiddo!


August 1, 1997 DEATH
Originally written July 27, 1982 (That Day!)

DEATH, that cunning artist of despair. It stalks its prey anytime, day or night, seeking young or old, healthy or sick, or those caught unaware. It hovers over you when you are eating, sleeping, or just sitting. It can act directly or use one of its allies, Man. It can act swiftly and mercifully, or slow and agonizingly.

We have all seen DEATH. It is apparent everywhere we look:

A loose board on the stairs;

Teenager with his parents car on Friday night;

An armed robber at a bank;

A person eating dinner after too much to drink;

A hot bubble bath.

It even strikes on joyous occasions:

A birth;

A wedding;

A party.

But it is most subtle when it creeps up through a person's emotions:





Mostly, DEATH attacks people through others, but its greatest joy is when it makes a person turn on himself.

Suicide is DEATH's ultimate ecstasy!

And DEATH is ecstatic right now.