On Being Curious

“Curiouser and curiouser,” Alice of Alice In Wonderland exclaimed.

Well, me too, though my curiosity had less to do with Lewis Carroll’s literary Wonderland and more with . . . wine tasting.

For a number of years my wife and I and several friends have traveled in the autumn to a nearby wine country. A little over two hours of driving transports us to a variation of “wonderland.” Paso Robles is a place of winding roads, oak-dappled hills, cool mornings, and warm afternoons. There are hundreds of large and small, new and well-established wineries in the region.

A tasting we shall go!

The trip provides opportunities to talk and share and rest. Good friends. Good times. On a prior adventure, I told one friend—he was my roommate in college way back in the day—that he was a snoopy kind of fellow. Not snoopy like Charlie Brown’s beloved beagle, but snoopy as in “snooping around,” or inquisitive, or even curious.

He denied it, demanding examples. I immediately provided one. With a harrump sound, he gave a half-hearted excuse as a way of undermining my brilliant example, continued to deny his snoopy-ness, and then tried to turn the tables and accuse me of being the snoopiest of all.

I wouldn’t deny that label for a moment! Continue reading →

Print Friendly, PDF & Email
Facebooktwittergoogle_plusredditpinterestlinkedinmailby feather

I’ll Tell Ya How to Cast Your Ballot!

On November’s first Tuesday after the first Monday in the United States, people will vote.

It’s more complicated than that, of course. Some voted days and weeks ago through the mail. Some in the military voted with ballots marked in countries thousands of miles from their closest “home town” polling site. Some needed help to place an “x” by a candidate’s name. On my California ballot, a witness aiding a voter must also sign their name on the document.

Isn’t it easy to vote?

And yet so many don’t.

According to the United States Election Project, the results for President in 2016 (with 231,556,622 eligible voters) were:

  1. 6% Didn’t Vote
  2. 6% voted for Hillary Clinton
  3. 5% voted for Donald Trump
  4. 7% voted for Gary Johnson

So, it could be said that the third pace finisher won. But the popular count doesn’t count, since the Electoral College decides the winner and loser in the presidential contest.

But come on!

In a nation with the freedom to vote, barely half take the time to complete a ballot?

Shame on us!

Voting matters, right? Continue reading →

Print Friendly, PDF & Email
Facebooktwittergoogle_plusredditpinterestlinkedinmailby feather

For Where Your Bling Is…

Jesus was not a cardiologist. And yet, I would guess that many modern cardiologists, along with the majority of people, would agree with this long-ago statement from Matthew 6:21:

For where your treasure is, there will be your heart also.

Did Jesus really say it? The Jesus Seminar scholars, a loose-knit group of academics that have rigorously examined Jesus’ words in the Gospels (and who challenge readers to realize some of Jesus’ statements may have been “invented” by the Gospel writers), had mixed reactions to this verse.

A version of these verses also appears in Luke 12:33-34 and the Gospel of Thomas 76:3. Did Jesus say it? There’s no doubt that scholars can debate its veracity. But I believe the statement; those brief words can rattle and rekindle my faith.

Belief believes.

I recall when a friend called to tell me he was scheduled for a procedure in the near future. An angiogram. There might be more if blockage was found, including a stent placed in one or more of his arteries. He and his cardiologist had been monitoring some cardiac aberrations and it was past time to take a closer look.

I think my friend was afraid. (I would be too.) Continue reading →

Print Friendly, PDF & Email
Facebooktwittergoogle_plusredditpinterestlinkedinmailby feather