Tuesday, July 27, 2010

Wal-mart vs The Morons

Wal-Mart vs. The Morons

I didn't write this, but it is so dead on I had to post it...

1. Americans spend $36,000,000 at Wal-Mart Every hour of every day.

2. This works out to $20,928 profit every minute!

3. Wal-Mart sells more from January 1 to St. Patrick's Day (March 17th) than Target sells all year.

4. Wal-Mart is bigger than Home Depot + Kroger + Target +Sears + Costco + K-Mart combined.

5. Wal-Mart employs 1.6 million people, is the world's largest private employer, and most speak English.

6. Wal-Mart is the largest company in the history of the world.

7. Wal-Mart now sells more food than Kroger and Safeway combined, and keep in mind they did this in only fifteen years.

8. During this same period, 31 big supermarket chains sought bankruptcy.

9. Wal-Mart now sells more food than any other store in the world.

10. Wal-Mart has approx 3,900 stores in the USA of which 1,906 are Super Centers; this is 1,000 more than it had five years ago.

11. This year 7.2 billion different purchasing experiences will occur at Wal-Mart stores. (Earth's population is approximately 6.5 Billion.)

12. 90% of all Americans live within fifteen miles of a Wal-Mart.

You may think that I am complaining, but I am really laying the ground work for suggesting that MAYBE we should hire the guys who run Wal-Mart to fix the economy.

This should be read and understood by all Americans Democrats, Republicans, EVERYONE!!

To President Obama and all 535 voting members of the Legislature,

It is now official you are ALL corrupt morons:

a.. The U.S. Postal Service was established in 1775. You have had 234 years to get it right and it is broke.

b.. Social Security was established in 1935. You have had 74 years to get it right and it is broke.

c.. Fannie Mae was established in 1938. You have had 71 years to get it right and it is broke.

d.. War on Poverty started in 1964. You have had 45 years to get it right; $1 trillion of our money is confiscated each year and transferred to "the poor" and they only want more.

e.. Medicare and Medicaid were established in 1965. You have had 44 years to get it right and they are broke.

f. Freddie Mac was established in 1970. You have had 39 years to get it right and it is broke.

g.. The Department of Energy was created in 1977 to lessen our dependence on foreign oil. It has ballooned to 16,000 employees with a budget of $24 billion a year and we import more oil than ever before. You had 32 years to get it right and it is an abysmal failure.

You have FAILED in every "government service" you have shoved down our throats while overspending our tax dollars.


Saturday, July 24, 2010

Have you ever contemplated one trillion dollars?

Thursday, July 22, 2010

If you're happy and you know it catch a fish

Yesterday was a great day.  A perfect day.  So I took my youngest son fishing.

My six-year-old son, Coleman, was determined to catch his first fish.  He has been trying for months, if not years.  He was upset that it had not happened yet. 

We left my house at 5pm and headed for East Canyon reservoir in our 15 passenger van that we call, The Escape Pod.  We towed my little boat behind the escape pod and stopped for dinner at McDonalds where my son ordered an extra hamburger with extra pickles (his trademark).  During our one-hour drive there, we talked about some of his favorite things.  He told me his favorite animal is a lizard, his second favorite is a cat (we don't have a cat), and his third favorite is a dog (we do have a dog).  He told me his favorite bird is the "bald one" (a bald eagle).  He also told me about the girl in his Sunday School class that he likes because, "Her's cute". 

We got to the lake and parked to set up the boat.  It is a ten-foot long, green, plastic, bass boat with two seats, an electric trolling motor, a fish-finder GPS system, and four pole holders.  It is a great little fishing boat with a top speed of 2.11 Miles per hour when going with the wind.  That is plenty fast for trolling and cast fishing.  We have a lot of fun with it. 

I asked my son how bad he wanted to catch a fish.  He said "Really bad".  I asked him who would help him catch a fish.  He pointed at me.  I took his finger and pointed it skyward and told him to say a prayer to help him catch a fish.  He took his over sized red hat off and folded his arms.  His legs dangled over the side of his fishing chair on the boat.  I nodded my head as I peaked to keep us floating in the right direction.  "Heavenly Father, please help me catch my first fish.  And please keep us safe.  In the name of Jesus Christ, Amen." 

I smiled and said my own silent prayer.  "Father, please help me teach my son about prayer today.  I'm not asking for a fish for myself, but please let him have that experience today.  Please help him get his first fish.  In Jesus name, Amen." 

I handed Coleman his pole.  He had been practicing in our front yard casting with a spinning reel.  I was amazed at how proficient he was, almost immediately.  He fished with a shallow running Rapala rig, and I set up a trolling rig for trout.  We ran shallow at first and worked our way into deeper water with no luck.  After about ninety minutes it started to drizzle on us.  "Good thing I brought my hat,"  Coleman said.  "I think we should go home now."

"But what about your prayer?  You asked God to help you catch a fish.  You have to have a pole in the water and do the work for him to answer your prayer." 

"OK," he replied and cast his bait back in the water.  The drizzle stopped.  It was just a little summer shower.

The sonar showed some fish in a small underwater ravine, so I dropped anchor and we switched to stationary tackle.  I let my son try a worm and I set up a power bait rig.  We dropped them both thirty feet to the lake bottom and watched the sonar intently.  There were fish moving on the bottom from time to time.  I saw my son's pole twitch and I set the hook for him.  My son's bottom lip was hidden under his top teeth as he concentrated on the water.  He reeled clumsily and the fish flashed at us.  It was a nice pan sized rainbow trout.  I grabbed the net and surfaced the fish, water shimmering past my sons exploding smile.  The sun was setting behind him in brilliant pinks and purples that matched the stripe on his fish. 

"I can't believe I caught my first fish!" he said through is smile as I gave him a high five.  I had him reach into the tackle box and pull out the stringer.  He pushed one end into the fishes mouth and out its gill and I took his picture.  It was complete with a melted candy bar all over his face. 

We placed the fish back in the water and tied the stringer to the boat.  I slipped my hand back into my tackle box past many hundreds of dollars of fancy crank baits and expensive spinners and pulled out the four dollar bottle of orange and green floating Power Bait.  I rolled a ball and slid it onto his simple treble hook and tossed it clear of the side of the boat.  Coleman cast it back into the spot his first fish came from.  He reeled it back in with a second and larger rainbow trout moments later.  When I netted his second fish, he announced, "I caught that one all by myself!  We can go home now."  He was eager to show his fish to the rest of the family. 

It started raining again as I pulled in the anchor.  It was getting dark and we turned on the navigation lights.  I pulled two baits 200 feet behind my boat on the way back to the dock, but had no luck for myself.  When I finished reeling in my baits, and prepared to dock the boat, I looked at my son and asked him, "Who did you ask to give you a fish?"


"What should you do now that you have a fish?"

He thought for several seconds, watching his fish on the stringer in the water.  "Thank him."

"How do you thank him?"


"Good answer.  Go ahead and say another prayer."

He pulled off his big hat and folded his arms again.  "Heavenly Father, thank you for my first fish.  And the extra one.  In the name of Jesus Christ, Amen."

"And thanks for keeping us safe."  I whispered

"Oh yeah, and thanks for keeping us safe.  In the name of Jesus Christ, Amen." He finished.


We got the boat back on the trailer.  It is a flat trailer for ATVs and hauling yard waste, and the boat just slides up into it when I push hard enough.  Coleman pulled the dock rope and helped as much as he could. 

We got back in the van and stopped for a treat.  I got chocolate chip cookies and milk.  Coleman got a sour chewy candy bag and a blue drink called "Bug juice." 

Half way home, Coleman sat in the front seat and started humming a song. 

"What song is that, Bud?"

"If you're happy and you know it."

He went from humming to singing, and made up new verses every couple of minutes.  I sang along with him. 

He had every right to be happy.  He had a Happy meal with extra pickles for dinner.  It was a beautiful day.  The sunset was breathtaking.  The water was warm.  He caught two fish.  And God answered our prayers.  We were happy and we knew it.

Tuesday, July 20, 2010

What a rattlesnake taught me about God

My wife spotted a Cooper's hawk in the shade under one of our trees eating a Mourning Dove yesterday.  The hawk ambushed the dove while the dove ate at one of our bird feeders.  The hawk stayed there, in the shade on the lawn, for over thirty minutes plucking feathers from his kill and eating breakfast, as we watched in awe through my spotting scope from the kitchen.  Doves are monogamous and the one that wasn't killed stayed nearby until the hawk left.  I think it was waiting to be reunited by its mate.  The surviving dove will mourn a little louder for a while.

Last week a rattlesnake got hit by a car near my house.  The neighbor boys brought the body over to show me.  We got out my dissection kit and opened it up.  As the sun set, there were fifteen neighbor kids circling me on the curb, watching with mouths wide open as I exposed it's organs and we took turns looking at its features through a magnifying glass. 

I'm an animal person.  Not merely a dog person or a bird person, I'm an animal person.  Petco loves me because I use a shopping cart every time I visit.  We have two ferrets, a bird, three lizards, a dog, and forty or fifty crickets in the house at any given time.  I have literally twenty five bird feeders and a birdbath in my back yard.  I believe that animals testify that God exists.  I cannot fathom that we happened here by chance. 

I believe that God gave us two huge gifts.  He gave us this beautiful planet, but he also gave us agency.  Some use this agency to hurt others.  Some use it to help others.  Then there is me, trying to figure it all out, sometimes offending and hurting others, and sometimes offering a hand, trying to be a good father, husband, neighbor, and son.  A lot of what is bad in life can be attributed to someone's bad decisions.  But some parts of life are just part of living in a mortal state, like the dove getting eaten, or the rattlesnake getting hit by a car, or my son getting type 1 diabetes at 8 years old, or me being born without a sense of smell. 

At the end of the day, as the sun sets, and the crickets start chirping, and the birds seek shelter for the night, life is a miracle.  It is a miracle that we are here.  It is a miracle to take a breath and move my fingers over a keyboard.  It is a miracle to live another day.  A rattlesnake taught me that.

Sunday, July 4, 2010

Why does our national anthem question if the flag is still standing at the end?

Did you know that we only hear part of the national anthem when it is sung publicly?  The first verse of four is recited.  It ends questioning if the flag is still waving.  It isn't until the second verse that the question is resolved.  On this fourth day of July in the year 2010, I wanted to remind everyone about the rest of the anthem and some of the powerful themes and messages it carries.  I am grateful to God and his sons and daughters who fought to protect this nation.  I am thankful to live where I can worship and live according to the dictates of my conscience. 

The Star Spangled Banner Lyrics

By Francis Scott Key 1814

Oh, say can you see by the dawn's early light

What so proudly we hailed at the twilight's last gleaming?
Whose broad stripes and bright stars thru the perilous fight,
O'er the ramparts we watched were so gallantly streaming?
And the rocket's red glare, the bombs bursting in air,
Gave proof through the night that our flag was still there.
Oh, say does that star-spangled banner yet wave
O'er the land of the free and the home of the brave?

On the shore, dimly seen through the mists of the deep,
Where the foe's haughty host in dread silence reposes,
What is that which the breeze, o'er the towering steep,
As it fitfully blows, half conceals, half discloses?
Now it catches the gleam of the morning's first beam,
In full glory reflected now shines in the stream:
'Tis the star-spangled banner! Oh long may it wave
O'er the land of the free and the home of the brave!

And where is that band who so vauntingly swore
That the havoc of war and the battle's confusion,
A home and a country should leave us no more!
Their blood has washed out their foul footsteps' pollution.
No refuge could save the hireling and slave
From the terror of flight, or the gloom of the grave:
And the star-spangled banner in triumph doth wave
O'er the land of the free and the home of the brave!

Oh! thus be it ever, when freemen shall stand
Between their loved home and the war's desolation!
Blest with victory and peace, may the heav'n rescued land
Praise the Power that hath made and preserved us a nation.
Then conquer we must, when our cause it is just,
And this be our motto: "In God is our trust."
And the star-spangled banner in triumph shall wave
O'er the land of the free and the home of the brave!