I want to thank all of you, every single one who has ever visited this blog; yes, even the spammers. I have been on Blogger for exactly thirty-two months (okay...maybe thirty-two months and one day, but who's counting?) As I said in an earlier post, I will be leaving Blogger and Google behind.
The reasons remain the same; Google. Maybe it is the hell hath no fury like a writer scorned thing; I don't know. But, my opinion, if it counts, evolved beyond that, especially when Bruce Draganjac got my new site running. I can't tell you how stoked I am to be at a new location, and I was able to find a way to import every one of my archives (posts, comments, and categories) into the new site, so nothing is missing except a few sidebar plug ins which will show up as soon as I have time to play. My links to blogs I read will also appear over the next few days.
Beyond all the new looks and stuff I can do is the speed at which my new site loads; simply put, it blows Google/Blogger right out of the water. I had long surmised that people visiting my site were having to wait quite a time in order for everything to appear; and I believed it had to do with how the Blogger template is written and partitioned. It's designed to be easy to manage, but it is not designed to be fast, and because the web host is also Google/Blogger, you have everyone and their monkeys relatives logging on at any given moment; certainly not conducive to a quick look at a blog page. I hope my new site will load much more quickly for all of you.
And so, without further adieu (I hope I spelled that right), here is the link that leads you to my new site.
I will be keeping this blog open for a few weeks so that anyone who visits my blog regularly but not on a daily basis can get the appropriate link. All new posts, and most importantly, new Tips of the Day (because everyone knows you can't live without those!) will be at the new site. Again,
THANK YOU ALL!!
Is it the diaper? Because I have been hearing reporters and talking heads discussing the diaper angle on the case almost as much as I heard about the helicopter that was shot down in Iraq yesterday. Excuse me, many people died in that helicopter crash; they deserve more than sharing time with Lisa Nowak's diaper.
So I decided to turn today's post into a little news special, reporting on the mass media's reporting of the Lisa Nowak, Astronaut/triangle thingy. I figure we can get three, maybe four days of coverage on this one issue alone. We can have you guys send in reports through the comments section, reporting breaking news of Keith Olberman or Anderson Cooper vacillating about Lisa Nowak's diaper, and weather it was soiled or not at the time of arrest. I can almost see Anderson Cooper drooling, and Wolf Blitzer stating, in his ever so serious way, "Lisa Nowak was the best of the best, a top notch astronaut, and pilot, not accustomed to failure; what went wrong with her plan...................(long pause for dramatic effect) and would she have succeeded if her diaper hadn't been soiled?
What do you think? Will the people who report the news like being reported about as much as they report and sensationalize everything else?
Several people have asked me why I still attend a church every so often (my "attendance" is about once every two weeks). I have a simple answer for that; I see no reason to stop going. As I said, once you understand the totality of Christ's mission, doctrine and dogma are longer important social issues. Where I am located in any given moment has no bearing on what I believe, and what I believe has no bearing on where I go; this offer of life and freedom is mine for the taking and sharing no matter where I am. That's why going to "church" is still a natural thing for me to do.
Do I listen to sermons, I have been asked? Not really, although there are times I listen to what other people are listening to. Does that mean I know everything? No, it doesn't, but it does mean that I know what sounds like life, and what sounds like captivity; I will avoid captivity at all costs.
So why continue going to church if you don't listen to sermons? There is a simple answer to that question as well. There are people at church, where else should I be? If I go to a bar, there are people there also. The grocery store, a theater, the Internet, a walk in the woods are all marvelous places to meet people and to share life and freedom with. Church is just as good a place as any to love someone else. I have yet to hear an argument, any argument, that would convince me otherwise.
And somehow, although I am not really into the craze of WWJD. I can't help but wonder every so often why Jesus hung around the temple so much, knowing what he knew. What was the point? His message was as vibrant outside of Jerusalem as it was inside of the temple; it didn't seem to change no matter where he went. I tend to think that if Jesus, knowing the truth far better than I, wasn't uncomfortable or threatened by being in a place he knew could sometimes be a prison for people, why should it be any different for me?
In the end, there are people at church, and some of these people are friends. Some are not. But it doesn't even really matter if they are friends or not; if I stay away because of dogmatic differences, they will never be friends, and I will never have the opportunity to love them as an experience rather than as a concept. It has been my experience that no matter what someone believes, the experience of loving them is far greater than a distant concept of loving them. The experience of loving people and sharing life with them no matter what they believe is what brings community to life; dogma cannot stand in the way of that, ever.
I know of a young girl going to university right now who is having a hard time of things; everything seems to come at her at once, and at times, it just seems to be so unbearable because we are lost in the moment.
I told her what I will tell you.
Tell yourself this right now, and any moment when it seems like the dam is about to burst....
"Every thing is going to be alright, child. "
I have been with Blogger for two and a half years, and I wouldn't have had reason to switch until Google Adsense disabled my adsense account. Blogger is run by Google, and I didn't want to continue using that company's services.
I received the following email from them:
Hello Tom Reindl,
It has come to our attention that invalid clicks and/or impressions
have been generated on the Google ads on your site(s). We have
therefore disabled your Google AdSense account. Please understand that
this was a necessary step to protect the interest of the AdWords
A publisher's site may not have invalid clicks or impressions on any
ad(s), including but not limited to clicks and/or impressions generated
- a publisher on his own web pages
- a publisher encouraging others to click on his ads
- automated clicking programs or any other deceptive software
- a publisher altering any portion of the ad code or changing the
layout, behavior, targeting, or delivery of ads for any reason
These or any other such activities that violate Google AdSense Terms
and Conditions and program polices may have led us to disable your
account. The Terms and Conditions and program polices can be viewed at:
Publishers disabled for invalid click activity are not allowed further
participation in AdSense and do not receive any further payment. The
earnings on your account will be properly returned to the affected
If you feel that this decision was made in error, and can maintain in
good faith that the invalid activity was not due to the actions or
negligence of you or those you are responsible for, such as employees
and family members, you may appeal the closing of your account. To do
so, please contact us only through this form:
If Google decides to evaluate your appeal, we will do our best to
inform you quickly and will proceed with appropriate action as
necessary. If we have reached a decision on your appeal, subsequent or
duplicate appeals may not be considered.
The Google AdSense Team
Naturally, I appealed. When I asked which IP addresses had generated the "invalid" clicks, Google's response was that they couldn't reveal the IP address or addresses because the program that monitored such activity was proprietary. Yes, that was the word they used, "proprietary". I know what it means in terms of specifications for construction processes and materials, but I am pretty sure that it doesn't have squat to do with revealing evidence when you are accusing someone of doing something wrong.
I made this decision because I just didn't want to deal with Google anymore, and I won't be using their search engines either.
I plan on visiting the Google building, laying a crisp twenty dollar bill down on their conference table, and telling them it represents my offer to purchase their company. What do you think...will they accept, or be insulted? ;)
Washing your eyes out with a caustic solution is really only a drastic last resort for changing the way you see yourself in a mirror. I don't recommend it unless you really, really want to.
"You are right; it is about relationship. But you don't need to do anything to experience that relationship because He lives within you, and all of your experiences include Him. He is not the needy, clinging God that Churches make Him out to be. What He desired, He did on his own, by welcoming himself into your life. That wasn't a choice you, or any of us made. I guess my advice would be to relax, and every so often, remember God, because try as hard as you might, when you have to force yourself to "spend time with God", you're missing the beauty and freedom of the truth, which is; God is ALWAYS with you, and you don't have to go anywhere, or do anything special to be with Him. "
Just be, and you have already done what you set out to do. Just be, and already, he is with you, and you are with him. Relationships don't get easier than that.
Slinging mud about things a political opponent has done in the past isn't very nice, and probably won't win you an election. It's much better to make up current stories about them.
What has caused this turn of events? I think nearly everything "political" has caused it, but the twenty billionth political straw that broke the donkey/elephants back was the latest political "statement" made by our new democratic powerhouse; the Nonbinding Resolution against the Iraq Troop increase. Oops! Did I say increase? Oh no, the first politically incorrect statement of my "political" career. I meant, "surge".
Yeah, and I didn't inhale, either.
What in the Sam hell tarnation effing blue sky over these amber waves of grain is a non-binding resolution? Does it mean our politicians are resolved to be non-committal? Does it mean more Washington wishy-washyness? Clearly, if it is non-binding, then nothing has been resolved; therefore, why bother calling it a resolution? Is the answer to that question something I will have to learn in my first days as president of the United States? Will I have to learn how to use the English language in mysterious and silly ways, all in hopes of confusing my constituents so much with my goofy, adjective laden rhetoric that in the end, they re-elect me because anyone who can sound so goofy all the while keeping a straight face MUST know what he is talking about? (See...I've been taking lessons...PO-litical lessons, that is)
My first act as President of the United States will be to introduce a plan that requires all elected senators and congresspeople to actually take a stand on an issue, rather than waiting to find out which side is the wrong side, and then stating "I was against that allllllllllll along!" in front of the nearest spin machine.
Say what you want about President Bush (i am no fan of his), but currently in Washington, he is the only politician who has balls big enough to make a decision and stand by it. Oops! Did I say "balls"? I meant "courage", for you lady folk out there. His trouble is, possibly, he listens to the people who themselves don't know what in the hell is going on.
My next act? I will introduce a plan that outlaws political parties in this country. Imagine a group of politicians actually having to stand on their own two feet, and decide according to their conscience, what path is best?
You're right, that is hard to imagine, isn't it? Well, looks like, after we have the mass burial for all the current politicians who committed suicide because they couldn't cope with having to carry around a sack of balls, we'll just have to elect new senators and congresspeople, won't we? And we won't let them learn the old way of American politics, will we? Because the next bit of legislation will be to limit not just the president's tenure to two terms, but all elected officials to two terms, so that we can be sure to continue with politicians who aren't in it to get re-elected, but rather, are in it to get the job done right.
Currently in Washington, we have a group of princes and princesses who believe that the American people elected them to maintain the status quo; only with the democratic party in control. Yes, you see, because the democrats are younger and better looking, and it's so much better to get screwed by young, good looking politicians, than by old, cigar smoking republican politicians.
Next bit of work to be done as President? Send two to three thousand American Tanks to Baghdad. If we are going to be in that country, then let's put our soldiers in the most protective vehicles we have. Then, we can tell the terrorists, "Throw your IED at this", and laugh. We will truly then show how pitiful a suicide bomber is, when the only person he blows up is himself. Let that happen about a hundred times, and then let's see how willing the young radicals are to jump in front of a tank that barely moves while they are disintegrating. Like I said, if we have to be there.....
Maybe I'll write more about my bid for the highest office in this nation. Will you join me in the revolution? Let's hear your ideas.
Remember, no idea, on this blog, is ever too goofy.
If your boss yells at you today, roll your eyes up into your head, and make sure he sees you do it. When he gets angrier at you, patiently explain that there is a reason you rolled your eyes up.
You better have a good reason waiting.
I am admitting something here. It is true, I reserved myself from others, and worst of all, judged them to be not worthy of my time. Why did I do that? I haven't really thought about it much, but I'd bet it had something to do with feeling as if I was competing with them for something. And maybe that something was Father's attention. Maybe not. But when you live believing that you did something to earn your redemption, I think subconsciously, you also believe that you have to keep earning that redemption; as if you have to prove it over and over.
Maybe that's' not it, either. Maybe it's not redemption we feel we have to earn, but approval, because God is our Father, and we so desperately want our father's approval. So we don't relax and believe we have it; instead, we act out our insecurity by trying to be good, and by trying to stay away from what we believe is bad. Maybe we figure if we do that, we'll always keep Daddy near, and evil far away.
But that doesn't work either, and we know it doesn't deep down, because we never relax in our Father's glory. We never just live out our lives accepting that God loves us. Oh, we might say we believe God loves us, but do we really believe it? "Hey, look, He sent His son to die for us. Now that's love!"
Maybe it is.
But maybe the kind of love we miss is the love God gives us which allows us to be ourselves, complete with all our "sins" and problems. I don't know too many people who claim to be Christians who aren't concerned that they currently do something that is "wrong", and might possibly hurt their relationship with God. What kind of freedom is that?
Love is not a prison, and it's also not a self-help diary. Love is the gasoline that fuels your car. It's the rocket fuel that sends us to the moon. Love is the energy, the fuel that propels us to freedom, and in that freedom, to the possibility of greatness.
Have you ever heard someone say, "I love her so much that I couldn't do without her?" That's not love, that's a possession, and what do we do with possessions? We lock them up so we don't lose them. But love sets us free, and instead of binding us to a set of do's and don't's, it allows us room to make mistakes, and achieve success.
It is said our transgressions were nailed to the cross. If we delve into that, we could also say the Law was nailed to the cross; and if that is so, then what set of rules could we ever keep that would show God we loved Him?
I think the best way to show our love for God is to race with the fuel of freedom He gave us, instead of trying to put a governor on the throttle. Finally being able to relax in this kind of life opens our ears, our minds, and then our hearts to people we ignored before. We are more now than we were before, and I think somehow, we recognize that there is no need to compete for Father's attention. Somehow, we know we have it, because we realize that we live in it, and in Him.
You don't have to go anywhere to find God. And He doesn't have to go anywhere to find you. Realizing that is to our salvation.
Yes, yes, I know, Rudy Corleone, excuse me, I keep making mistakes, Giuliani, has also thrown his hat in, as has John McCain (Like the Vikings with the Super Bowl, will McCain ever win the big one?) There's quite a field in the running for the office of President already. I kept waiting for Al Gore to run again, and if he had decided before I did, I would have bowed out because who in their right mind could hope to beat Mr. Personality? In fact, if he still decides to run, it will be a two horse race, because every Republican and Democrat will bow out for the President who was elected but never sat in the big chair. It's rightfully his, isn't it?
I, however, am neither republican nor Democrat, and therefore I would have a duty to run against Gore at that point, no matter how hopeless it would all be. Global Warming being his platform, even I can't come up with something more important than that.
So here is where it all starts, huh?
Wouldn't it be absolutely freaky if my exploratory committee explored, and found that I could win? ;)
PS: My spellchecker knows how to spell Giuliani. How strange is that?
It's nice to begin thinking seriously about developing this story, and then actually writing it. It gives my imagination an outlet which I consider to be healthy. If not this, then where I do go with the fantasies that range inside of my mind?
My daughter has been an avid reader for years (she's only fourteen), and one the main genres she enjoys are fantasy fiction, which just so happens to be what I wrote and tried to develop when I was younger. Seeing her enjoy these stories, and borrowing her books, reading them myself, and enjoying them has spurred me on to exercise the story I have held for so many years.
I am looking forward to many, many hours of work; developing more characters, drawing a map of the land the story takes place in, creating a time line of events, and writing those events into story form. I have already written some of the story, but it still amazes me that the work for a story such as this doesn't start at the beginning, but rather at the end, and you tend to work your way backwards to the beginning.
I guess it's true for me; I have to know where I am going before I can figure out how to get there, and how to start. I might keep you posted on how things go. We'll see.
For now, peace out to all my brothers and sisters, all you who live in this world.
Don't be afraid to be someone else if you don't like yourself. Or...is it, "Don't be afraid to be yourself if you don't like someone else"? Now I'm confused!
Talk amongst yourselves.
Did you know that in this country, in this world, there is no law that says, "thou shalt not leave a homeless person without a home"? Did you know that in this world, there is no law that states, "Thou shalt make certain that no person goes hungry for even a single day"?
What would this world be like if instead of dwelling on harm, we dwelt on good? What would it look like if our "laws" were founded upon love and good will to each neighbor, rather than upon the darker nature of the law?
Have you ever wondered what kind of law God wrote on our hearts? He said he would, you know. So what, exactly, is that law? Is it "don't kill, steal, maim, rape, eat unhealthy foods, drink liquor, smoke pot, and sell crack"? Is this the law that is written on our hearts? You may have to search deep within yourself to find the answer to that question. For me, the answer is no.
The "law", if you can call it such a name, for me, is love. In that love, things come naturally, like wanting to feed a hungry person, or wanting to visit a lonely person, wanting to invite a homeless person inside of my home, so that he will be homeless no more. Love encourages one to reach out to a person, regardless of societal standards, and welcome that person as not only an equal, but as someone worthy of honor. Is that the law of the land?
In my educated opinion, I would say, the law of the land deals with crime, it invites the darker nature of man (if that nature is even a part of us) to come out and evade the "law". The law we live under, the law of the land, is only good for three things; assigning blame, judgment, and finally, punishment. The law of the land we all live under is not to the benefit of man, but to degredation of society. So long as we focus on this law, mankind will be bound to a prison of believing mostly in what we cannot do, rather than what we can do.
Already in our advanced culture, most do not believe that everyone can be fed, daily. Most believe that the homeless are homeless by choice, but even if they aren't, then still, we can't house everyone. Most believe that not all sick people can or should be healed. Most people ignore the lonely altogether; surely there can't be enough time in one day to make sure no one is lonely. Even in this so-called "Greatest Nation on Earth", most believe that the idea of national health care for each and every citizen is impossible. Most believe that the starving in this nation either can't be fed, or can't be found, no one seems to know who they are, yet people starve to death in this country everyday.
"More and better Laws!" we shout. "We need to address the problems of this nation by legislating everything! Only then will we be complete."
Here's a novel idea: We are already complete. With each new law we pass, we lose the knowledge of that completeness a little more.
I won't even go into the laws of the church, because the truth is, mankind no longer needs God or the church to screw himself up. In societies where the church is no longer the law, where man has chosen an "enlightened" stance, the Law still rules over man. Don't cheat on your taxes. Don't steal my property. Don't speed. Don't cut me off on the road. Don't try to get a job without an education...we won't let you!. If you start at the bottom rung of the ladder, near there you will stay for the rest of your life, because only college graduates have the right to start in the middle, and work their way up to be president of a corporation. If you don't have any money, and I do, I don't have to give you any; and should you starve because I didn't, I am still not a criminal.
Does that seem "Enlightened" to you? It sure doesn't to me.
I get tired of the arguments between believers and atheists, between the churched and the unchurched, between the schooled and the unschooled. There's no difference between any of them, as far as I have seen. Most just want to build upon the same old system that never worked to begin with. Maybe that's what Jesus meant when he talked about building upon a foundation of sand. Maybe it wasn't just about religion, but about the nasty way we legislate everything but we ignore PEOPLE.
But can you imagine a world where instead of a law stating "Thou shalt not kill", the law was instead, "thou shalt not allow any person to hungry for even a day"? How would that change the way we view people?
What if it wasn't a law, but instead, just something we knew deep inside of us, like it was inherent within our nature to take care of each other; not just to think about doing it, not just to say, "wouldn't that be nice?", but to actually DO IT?.
What if within our nature, God wrote these things:
1. We can't let anyone go hungry.
2. We can't let anyone be without a home.
3. We can't let anyone suffer loneliness.
4. We can't let anyone go without healing when healing is possible, no matter what it takes or how much it costs.
What if these things aren't laws, but are living principals within us? Do you think they aren't?
I guess it would be hard to find the answer to that question, because we have lived in this nation for so long as capitalists, that we have forgotten most of what it was like to actually share with one another; to make sure each has enough, and no one has too little. The system of Capitalism will never allow for us to regain that. Either we will stay imprisoned underneath it, or it must die.
The question we should ask ourselves is, are we unselfish enough to kill it? Or do we want what's coming to us? Do we want as much as we can grab, and to hell with everyone else, unless we happen to have a bunch of extra, and then maybe we can give something? That is capitalism, in its naked glory. That is the system you live under, and most of our laws are built upon a foundation of money, and nothing else.
Do you think that is the law God wrote on our hearts?
Currently, if a person freezes to death because he has no home, it isn't wrong, at least not according to our laws. But should you happen to steal when you are hungry, if you are caught, you're going to jail, baby!
This is what we call "Enlightenment".
No more wars, no hunger, no more lonely people. No more laws, no more money, no religion, too. Just people living for today, WITH one another, in love.
Can you picture it?
I often tell customers, when I am using my rotating laser level, not to let the laser touch any part of their skin, or they can suffer third degree burns wherever the laser touches them. Maybe you should try it, too.
What is up with Blogger's commenting system? And why does Blogger, every other day, load a page nine-tenths of the way, and then freeze, and go no further? What is up with that?
And why, pray tell, is it not spring yet? Where is the warm weather? When is it going to be "shorts" weather again? If we aren't going to have any snow, why not just skip winter altogether, and jump right into the nineties again?
Why is my ankle still hurting? Why am I still waiting for the closing on my home loan? Why can't you PEOPLE move faster!?
Hmmmph! Glad I got that off my chest.
Excuse me while I go say twelve Rosaries for penance.
Now where is it? Where did I put that God#@!**#@! rosary?! Jeeeeeez! When you want to say a rosary, there's never one around, but you can bet there will be one under your heel the moment you don't need it. And what's up with that blessed @#!*#*! blogger website AGAIN!?
I better calm down. I won't have enough time to say any more rosaries once I actually find the effing thing. Thank God I can pay for all these sins. Who knows where I'd end up if I never found my rosary! Thank God he gave us a way to pay for our own sins, so that we'd never really need Him. And what was with that goofy son of his? If someone slaps me in the face, I ain't turnin' no cheek, Mister, I can promise you that! I would have brought the ninety legions of angels down on his ass, or however many legions there were.
Then....I would have forgiven them...after they were dead.
Oh-oh. There it is! I found my rosary.
Well, maybe I can pray one or two more rosaries today. After all, I'll need to do SOMETHING after I'm done checking out all the pornsites.
Well, what would happen if He did? What would this world, this universe, this creation, be like?
May I suggest that if God needed anything, hell would be real? And if hell is real, then God needs it.
Why is this so?
Because only a being who "needs" to punish in the case of wrong-doing "needs" a hell. And only a being who has a hell requires a reason to put it to use.
In essence, if eternal hell is real, God as we describe him to our friends, family, children, and "the lost", is not. For we describe God as being self-sufficient, self-reliant, and self-fulfilling. We describe God as being needless. We have an image of God as being above all of that.
May I then suggest that if God is above any need, He is also above any eternal hell? Or should we go on with the contradiction, giving God a black eye where one has not been earned? What do you think?
When considering whether to purchase a tank or not, there are several influencing factors that need to be addressed. The first is how much you like your neighbor. The second is gas mileage. Do they make a tank that can serve dual purposes? What is it's safety rating? Can a family of five fit comfortably? Do you get the model with, or without passenger side air bags? What color options are available? Can you get a leather interior?
And finally, how many cupholders will it come with?
When you buy Microsoft software, and they give you the product key to install the program, they never tell you that it doesn't come with a key chain. You have to figure that out for yourself....or have someone really, really smart, like me, tell you.
The discussion is open. Feel free to say whatever you like. Just be nice. Tell me your position, and I'll tell you mine.
"War is an ugly thing, but not the ugliest of things. The decayed and degraded state of moral and patriotic feeling which thinks that nothing is worth war is much worse. The person who has nothing for which he is willing to fight, nothing which is more important than his own personal safety, is a miserable creature and has no chance of being free unless made and kept so by the exertions of better men than himself."
John Stuart Mill
It is Monday afternoon, and I have rested more these last few days than at any time in recent memory. It's time to face facts; there might be something wrong with my body. Everything hurts, all of the joints are sore and stiff, some are swelling, and I've begun to do some research. So far, it is a possibility that Rheumatoid Arthritis is the culprit.
What do I have to say about this? Not much, except it may be time to actually go see the doc and find out for certain. It's just that I hate going to doctors (I usually reserve all of my physicals for emergency room visits; you know the type, blood gushing from some wound or other, and "hey, while you're at it, can you check my blood pressure?"). That strict regimen has worked for years, and I have been waiting for some type of emergency room visit, so I could once again cash in on the two-for- the-price-of one doctor visit. If it doesn't occur soon, I'll have to make an "appointment". Gads! Just the thought makes me want to vomit.
How certain am I about this? Not real certain at all. But there must be some explanation. I can't remember the last time I didn't swallow eight to ten Ibuprofen pills a day, even on days off. When I wake up in the morning, I take one Vitamin C pill, One "One-a Day" Vitamin pill, and four or five Ibuprofen. That's why I don't eat breakfast; I'm already full just minutes after waking!.
For now, I'll live with it. Even if it is Rheumatoid Arthritis, I don't know what can be done about it. But it sure would be nice to know I'm not just being a wuss. Or maybe I am?