Tuesday, October 30, 2012

Peterffy scares the crap out of people!

I was watching a drama on TV last night and as it ended it went to a commercial that was narrated by this guy, Mr. Pettffy.  He tells of how he grew up in a "socialist" country, but  came to the USA  with a goal to take part in the American Dream.  The commercial is how he fears creeping socialism will end the American Dream as the rich loose their wealth to take care of the poor.   It is a creepy add.  You can watch it on YOUTUBE.

The problem?  He grew up in Communist Hungary!  Not quite Socialism.  He has a seat on the New York Stock Exchange and has made his fortune on WALL STREET.  From what I read in his bio, he is a self made man.

He closes his add by saying, "That why I vote Republican."

Actually Britain, Canada, and Sweden work with Socialism in areas of medicine, etc.   China is also doing quite well, if you are wealthy enough.

I wonder what we would call the early Christians in Acts 2.

The bigger question is:  

If Jesus came to you and said, " "Sell everything you have and give it to the poor and you will  find treasure in Heaven. Then come follow me."

Would you answer. "Crazy Socialist Democrat!"

You may say:  "Mike, that's not the same! You are not fair."

That's Life.

Thursday, October 25, 2012


"Markings"- Dag Hammerskjold was given to me by my friend, Dan, in 1991.  It is a book of his spiritual writings and the manuscript was found after his untimely death in 1961. Dag served two  terms as the Secretary General of the United Nations and died in his second term in a plane crash with flying to negotiate a cease-fire between UN forces and those of Katanga.  His dad was the Swedish Prime Minister and he served in many positions in Sweden before the UN.  I heard his name frequently in the news while growing up, but we only knew his public side.  His commitment was to "The way of the Cross".

I take this down occasionally just to read a few gems.


"He broke fresh ground-- because, and only because, he had the courage to go ahead without asking whether others were following or even understood.  He had no need for the divided responsibility in which others seek to be safe from ridicule, because he had been granted a faith that required no confirmation -- a contact with reality, light,  and intense like the touch of a loved hand: a union in self-surrender without self-destruction, where his heart was lucid and his mind loving."

"We act in faith---and miracles occur. In consequence, we are tempted to make miracles the ground for our faith.  The cost of such weakness is that we lose the confidence of faith,  Faith is, faith creates, faith carries. It is not derived from, not created, not carried by anything except its own reality."

"Pray that your loneliness may spur you into finding something to live for, great enough to die for."

Winter of the World

I am reading this book of historic fiction. It is the second book of a trilogy that follows several families over a one hundred year period.  This book centers of the events leading to and during World War II; This Ken Follett book gives the point of view of Germans, Russians, British and Americans. 

The scary thing about this book is tracking how Communism and Fascism came into power. 

Communism came under the guise of better life for all and equality for all.  The poor craved help and this sounded good, until it was too late and they saw that only the strong survived and thrived.
But all those with open minds were silenced. (one way or another)

Fascism started by appealing to patriotism, the national pride, the idea that the chosen Christians were superior to all others.  The "inferior" included Jews, those with physical or mental conditions, and all those with open minds. 

The British and Americans looked much better BUT....

This is not meant to be  a review (I'm not finished) but I am liking it like the first volume.

It is interesting to read during our big political season because it makes me realize the idea that "we really don't learn from history".  I see some of the same ideas being put forth today in both parties!

We do live in a world where only the strong survive!

Monday, October 22, 2012

Knock, Knock, Who's There? ARGO

I have been looking forward to the movie, "Argo", for some time. 

1. I am old enough to know the story.
2. Although it happened in 1980, it wasn't declassified until Clinton's administration.

But it is a wild story just the same.  It is well acted and Ben Affleck does a great job directing.

The story:  "Argo" chronicles the life-or-death covert operation to rescue six Americans, which unfolded behind the scenes of the Iran hostage crisis in 1979-1980.  Affleck's character is a CIA operative who wants to bring the 6 out the country posing as Movie-makers of a sic-fi movie, "Argo".

My title of this post is a reference to an on going joke in the movie.

This is **** stars.

2012 movie 36

View from the Top

We went to the Oklahoma State football game against Iowa State in Stillwater.  It was Homecoming and the campus scene was crazy. OSU has come a long long way since I was in school in the 60's.

I am so old now that when I was in school, tuition was $12.00 an hour.  There was 12,000 on campus and about 20,000 came to games. Phil Cutchon was Coach (He had been Bear Bryant's main assistant at Alabama.  The first game I saw at OSU was against Air Force Academy and ended in a 0-0 tie!
Our best offensive play was a third down quick kick!

So, sitting in a private suite in Gallagher-Iba watching the game was a change to say the least.  Having a choice of prime rib or brats or grilled asparagus, etc. is not usual game food. (WE did get popcorn and nachos later).  We could watch the network feed or the feed from the stadium video feed on monitors.  Great seats.  BUT even though the windows were opened, it was not a way to get the feel of the game. PLUS  there were too many people there who really weren't sports fans.

But a good time time had because we WON!

It was a great sports week end.  We also saw the OKC Thunder play the Phoenix Suns Friday night in Tulsa.

Sunday, October 14, 2012

Paul Thorn

My favorite singer came back to Tulsa today for a free concert in the park.  I had a front row seat and was in a great position as he sung his last song.  He sung "Take your love with you where ever you go"  as he walked through the audience shaking hands and asking people to sing the chorus (including me!).

Fun Times with friends.

Master Disaster

I had been hearing a lot about the movie, "The Master".  It is supposed to be up for Academy Awards for Best Actor.  I saw it and all I can say, "Good Acting and Bad, Bad, None Existent story!"  I stayed to the end to see what would happen, but nothing did!


The Master is a disaster,

one star

2012 movie #35

Friday, October 12, 2012

Calling all Psychopaths!

I'm batching this weekend so I thought I would take advantage of the 50 mile rule and see a movie that most people might pass on.  I went to see "Seven Psychopaths" just out today.  I can't begin to expelling this wild crazy and wildly crazy comedy. Here briefly is the premise of sorts:
1. Colin Farrell is writing a screen play about "Seven Psychopaths" and he looks for inspiration.
2. His friend played by Sam Rockwell is teamed with Christopher Walken to still pets and return them when a reward is offered.
3. Woody Harrelson is a crime boss who has a little dog that he loves like family.
4. A hit man (the Jack of Diamonds) that shows up unannounced to kill "Killers"!
See where this is going?

Yes there are Psychos and killers who only kill Psychos.
This is a bloody movie although the violence is strange and only against bad people. It is graphic!

This is a movie about making a movie, which happens to be this movie and it is  extremely creative.

It is made by the director of "In Brunges" another Colin Farrell movie

Note:  Let me say up front that I DO NOT recommend this "R" movie (violence, language, some nudity, and religion discussions.)

Only Psychos would like this movie.

I liked it.

I give it ***1/2 stars    2012 movie 34

Thursday, October 11, 2012

Time - Then and Now

Today, I was told that my oldest client has decided to change architects.  I have been working for the school for 19 years.  Its long time superintendent  retired this year and the Board of Education (mostly new) wanted to change.  The reason they gave:  I had a good relationship with the former superintendent!  

Not much thought was given to the fact that I have most of the drawings, know where things are buried, etc.  BUT the entire staff that I worked with is gone.

I know that many out there have gone through the same if you have worked in any political job (Government, tribal government, church,  school, etc.)

I feared this day might come, but I wouldn't have think that I am despondent or anything:  "I don't want to work for anyone that fully wants me."  As Brother Dave once said: "Let those folks, who don't want none, have memories of not getting any!"

Since I have been dwelling on the present, I will quote another line from Jimmy Buffett's song:

"According to my watch the time is NOW,
The past is dead and gone.
Don't try to shake it just nod your head,
Breath in, Breath out, Move on.
Don't try to explain it just bow your head,
Breath in, Breath out, Move on.

Wednesday, October 10, 2012

The time is NOW

"The thing about time is that time isn't really real
its all on your point of view
How does it feel for you?"

James Taylor "The Secret of Life"

I listened to Bob Edwards show yesterday as he interviewed Jimmy Buffett. I thought I knew a lot about Jimmy but it proved very interesting.   I thought of how,in the 1980's, I only listened to His music every Friday.  It was a calming way to ease into the weekend.  I realized much later and was reminded today that Jimmy sells a much larger idea.  

The idea:   Slow down.  Be present Now. Enjoy life now. Time only exists when we allow it.

God must be trying to tell me something!

One of my recent books was "The Timekeeper" which showed me that we should make the most of life NOW.

I studied about Jesus saying in LUKE 10:  "Mike, Mike you are worried and upset about many things, but only ONE thing is needed. Mary has chosen what is better, and it will not be taken from her. )She was sitting at his feet!)

"I bought a cheap watch from the crazy man floating down  Canal
It doesn't use numbers or moving hands, It always just says NOW
You may be thinking that I was had, but this watch is never wrong
If I have trouble the warranty said: Breathe In, Breath out, Move on."

Jimmy Buffett

FYI:  I challenge anyone to go to one of his concerts without being totally PRESENT.

I even believe worship would be more interesting if we were fully present!

Friday, October 5, 2012

Dreaming up Songs

I am a gigantic dreamer. Literally!  Each night I am conscience of about 4 dreams. Most I forget, but occasionally I have a vivid one stuck in my head.  Last week I had one that stuck.

The dream:  I was watching a music video of a black gospel group (four guys).  The video was a collage of settings both outside and inside and they were singing a  fast paced song about the striving to get ahead in live but then thinking that the real goal is to be with God.  The name of the song was: "Never Mind, I'm Going home. "  the next morning I still remembered the tune and the chorus.  I remembered what the song was about, but the words failed me.  

I talked to my songwriting friend, Kendall Dean, about this, and he said, "If your dreaming them, then you are a song writer!"

I did attempt to write down what I remembered and here it is:  Think of it more of southern gospel and contemporary.

Never Mind I'm Going Home

I dreamed of fame and fortune and all the world could give
I thought of mansions full of gold as a great way to live
I started working night and day to get my rightful share
But when I thought what I'd have to give

Never mind I'm going home!

I'm going home to my Father
Going home to the Son of God
Going home with the Spirit
Praise GOD I'm going home

Not Grammy material but I did google the title and checked iTunes for the title but turned up nothing.

The dream however was cool.

Tuesday, October 2, 2012

My Crazy Life: On Preaching 3

I mentioned a while back that I had the chance to preach at my church recently.  Several people said nice things to me afterwords. Now I'm not sure.  One of the men that complimented me about my talk that said among other things: God is our provision. We are in the world but should not be caught up in the World.  Politics was not important to Jesus. We should not worry about the future and who is our president.   

Ok, Back to the guy.  He sent out a mass email this week and copied me.  It was  obviously one of those things that is passed along by like minded people.  It is supposed to be a reprint of a sermon by the "Pastor of this predominantly black church in Virginia". In the sermon he uses Genesis 47: 13 - 27 as his text.  It is about how the children of Israel traded their goods, land, cattle for food with the Pharaoh (actually with Joseph).  He went on to call this nationalization of goods.  he then explained that it was about "redistribution of wealth"!

Then he starts comparing Obama to the Pharaoh and that many of us call Obama "the Messiah"! (I guess its a Virginia thing!)   He then prays:  "We pray for revival, and we pray for deliverance from those who would be our masters. Give us hearts to seek you and protect your people from the atrocities of Pharaoh's (Obama's) government."

Ok, This is crazy on so many levels. 1. The brother who sent it to me just told me by this that my talk that Sunday was worthless to him.  2.  The context of the passage was about Joseph and not Pharaoh!

3. While I think this  writing is a sham,  Christian's who like this little writing would choke on:

"All the believers were together and had everything in common. Selling their possessions and goods, they gave to anyone as he had need." Acts 2:44,45

Something tells me that the LORD was used "REDISTRIBUTION" a few times.

Leave POLITICS out of the BIBLE.

Note: As days go by, I believe my days are numbered.  

In Oklahoma the growing sentiment is that Jesus  was a conservative, Republican leaning leader.   

I think it comes from the idea that Jesus liked to eat with the (Re) publicans and tax collectors!  

Getting Loopy!

We went to see "Looper" the other day.  I like movies like this.  Do you remember "Mimento" (one of my favorites)? Well its not like that.  Did you see "Matrix"?  Not like that either!  It is about a hit man who is also a time traveler.  He goes back and forth between now and 30 years from now.  Time travel has been outlawed, but the bad guys still use it. They kill people and send the bodies 30 years ahead to dispose the bodies. It all goes good for our main guy until he is sent to the future to kill "himself". Joseph Gordon-Levitt is the hit man and Bruce Willis is him in 30 years.

The reason I mentioned the other movies is because you have to pay attention. You time travel a lot and need to know where you. are!  It also keeps you engaged.  Sure its sci-fi but fun.  It is violent at times but I was watching a HIT MAN.

Emily Blunt and Jeff Daniels are also cast.  Emily Blunt's role has a little bit of "Damien" in her story. Jeff is the bad guy.

I liked this as a thinking person's gangster movie.

**3/4 stars    2012 Movie 33