Curses

One of the problems with being an irregular blogger is that when you do get around to posting you also dig around in the admin pages and discover that every little stupid thing attached to your blog requires an update and when some of them get updated they bork settings. Resetting them requires a test post to see if you set the settings in their proper places and order. SIGH! I wonder if I will ever get organised enough to keep up with the minutiae of the digital life.

Thanks everyone for reading this week’s real post.

My Valued Friend

I have a friend.

While that is not that big of a deal for most people, those that know me know that I have a hard time meeting people in the first place and that I have a tough time maintaining the friendship because of my introversion. Dealing with people is an exhausting experience for me. It is a very hard thing for me to do.

But I have this friend. We only share a couple of things in common. We are about the same age and we are both writers. We, half in jest, refer to ourselves as the modern equivalent of Fitzgerald and Hemingway.

That is probably not even remotely a true comparison as my friend and I are polar opposites on just about everything. He is northern and I am southern. Politically he is Bernie Sanders and I am a libertarian. His religion stems from somewhere near Catholicism and mine is more Judaic in origin. He was a white collar banker and I am a blue collar cabinetmaker. He is sickly while I am healthy as an ox. He is a cook and I can barely even find a kitchen. This even extends to the point that he is gay and I am straight. Truth is that rather than being like Fitzgerald and Hemingway we are more like Lewis and Tolkien. (Just in case he reads this I figure he is closer to Tolkien than me. He likes complex themes whereas I am a simpleton.)

I really don’t remember where or how we met. I know it was online and I know it was on one of the many non-Facebook/Twitter social networking platforms out there. I remember being drawn to the class of his posts. It wasn’t the usual drivel of the online social network. His posts showed him to be a man of grace, poise, and style with and understated dignity that we could all learn from. Somehow the two of us managed, as he is an introvert too, to strike up a friendship that has spanned the better part of a decade.

He is one of the few people in opposition to me or my ideas that I will pay attention to. Even though I may violently disagree with him, I respect and even value his opinions. They sharpen my own. They provide meaning to my own. They provide a depth to my thoughts and for many years I operated on autopilot not thinking deep thoughts.

I think the key to it is respect. We don’t hear each other we actually listen to each other and try to understand the other’s viewpoint. This is something that seems to be missing in the modern “conversation.” Everybody is talking but nobody is listening.

So “C,” even though you are wrong on just about everything I want you to know that I value this friendship that we have struck up and I value your insights and thoughts more than you will ever know.

Graham Crackers

640px-Graham-Cracker-Stack

So the other day for the first time in years I had some graham crackers. Biting into the first one and savouring the sweetness of it brought back memories of my childhood when I used to carry a lunch pail to school. My mom always packed a couple of graham crackers in my lunch along with an apple, a sandwich, and that nasty little brick of raisins. I tolerated the apple, detested the sandwich, threw the raisin brick at other kids, but I always like the graham crackers. I am not sure why I quit eating them as I grew older.

Curiosity led me to the wikipedia article about graham crackers. Where did they come from? How were they made? etc etc. I was wondering if such a simple food could be made at home.

According to the article a Reverend Graham invented the graham cracker in 1829 as part of his “bland” diet. The Reverend Graham believed that a proper diet could suppress “carnal urges” in people. Other people believed this as well. John Kellogg, the creator of corn flakes, being one.

Original graham crackers did not have much sweetener in them and were made with a high protein flour. Modern crackers are made with bleached flour, something Reverend Graham did not approve of, and lots of refined sugar and honey.

I never did find out if graham crackers could be made at home. I was too busy snacking on them to be bothered with more research.

The picture above was lifted from wikicommons and is listed as being in the public domain.

Non-Commercial Entertainment and News

For quite some time now I have had a growing disgust with the internet of today. I have always gotten cynical and jaded at the nonsense that floats around “social” media during election and I get really tired of seeing people trying to convert me to some religious cause or another but this angst has become something more than my cynicism.

Continue reading Non-Commercial Entertainment and News

Musings from a Funeral

My wife hails from a very large family. She is one of four siblings. Her Dad was one of six or seven siblings and her mother is one of seven. So as you can imagine there are quite a few aunts, uncles, cousins, nieces, nephews, and funerals. For the last decade or so we have had at least one funeral a year.  Continue reading Musings from a Funeral