Monday, March 9, 2015

MLK day

            Many people can quote the start of his most famous speech “I have a dream…” but few people can tell you what his dream was.
            Last month on MLK day I flew with one of my good friends to Carthage, NC where we ate at the Pic N’ Pig.  He read one of the plaques which told of the story of  James McConnel who died in battle during World War one.  JP read it in French since that is where he was born. 
            The second plaque is written in Chinese and tells of Robert Upchurch who served and died as one of the Flying Tigers.  My second student of the day is from China.  I look forward to the day when I can call him my friend. 
            The ideas expressed in the Constitution and the Declaration of Independence ring as true today as the day they were written.  The blood of people paying for the fruition of those dreams has been spilled in many battles.  French blood supporting the rebellious colonies, Chinese blood against an invading force and American blood mixed in with both.  Our civil war was the bloodiest.  I long for peace and weep for my fallen comrades and thank God that I live in a country that states upfront “We hold these truths to be self-evident, that all men are created equal, that they are endowed by their Creator with certain unalienable Rights, that among these are Life, Liberty and the pursuit of Happiness.”  The color of your skin does not matter; blood is red, what matters is how you live. 
            Live the dream.  Dream big. 


            Smokers gotta smoke, dogs gotta poop, old men gotta pee.  Police your butts, watch your step, don’t eat the yeller snow.

Tuesday, February 17, 2015

Redneck paradise

The first step in building a redneck paradise is to post the colors.

I love living in a swamp in Harnett County.

I get to watch aluminum cans of whoop ass bring black-hearted devils in baggy pants to Sicily, Normandy and Salerno drop zones. 

The perfect hot chocolate

When I was in the depths of cancer treatment everything tasted like cardboard and kerosene.  By the grace of God I live and breath additional blessings are the wonderful senses that we have one of which is taste.  After a hard cold day on the range a sweet cup of hot chocolate is amazing.  In my quest to live life to the fullest I have been experimenting with different formulas.  Store bought coco is good, there are many kinds.  In an effort to avoid a diabetic coma we sampled diet and sugar free products.  My tastes are eclectic and somewhat strange.  My current masterpiece contains coffee, cinnamon, coco power, vanilla and a touch of vanilla soothed with milk and honey.  I like it a lot!  My lovely daughter said it tasted like the Guinness of hot chocolate.  She did not mean it as a complement. 
            The addition of marshmallows is the topping that makes the drink.  I am not sure if the liquid is but the pallet upon which the marshmallows dance and play but they make even the most basic coco taste GOOD.  The Irish in me wants to add Bailey’s and or something stronger. 
            Have fun with your taste buds.  My favorite drink still is a tall cool glass of water.

Tuesday, February 10, 2015

Good advice

Drink more water
Be quiet
sing, dance and laugh while you do your chores

Now if I can just do that

Friday, February 6, 2015

Daddy what would you do

  While on the lake fishing my children asked me "Daddy what would you do if the boat capsized and we were all drowning?"
  "I'd jump in and save Mom, swim her to shore, run a hot shower for her, get her a clean dry change of clothes.  Then I would probably make her a hot bowl of New England clam chowder and perhaps a sandwich.  Do you think she might like some cheese and crackers?  What about a hot chocolate?  But, your momma would probably make me save y'all first."

Both my kids know how to swim. 

So does my wife. 

We wear floatation. 

Monday, January 26, 2015

The problem with instructors

            One of my mentors said “The problem with instructors is that after a while we think we have found the one true path and that everyone else is an idiot.”
            I think the truth is that we discover the one true path for us and we are idiots like everyone else. 

            All joking aside after a few years of intense studying a specific subject one begins to have insights.  Those insights can lead to a deep understanding of the subject.  Then, if you are lucky, you meet someone who has a completely different perspective.  It takes discipline to shut up and listen but if you do there is a potential for a “paradigm shift.”  I dislike buzz words but sometimes they capture the idea.  When people accepted that light acted like a particle AND a wave minds were blown and progress occurred.  The “pitch for airspeed and power for altitude” Bernoulli or Newton and other mental models are useful but not comprehensive.  It is difficult not to cement our minds into the theory that we understand and disregard others.

            On the other hand, people who tout their ability to “think outside the box” sometimes are merely undisciplined.  A basic understanding of the current theories and ideas about a subject allows one to have an intelligent conversation based on something other than conjecture.  I do not have a problem with someone who says “I believe __” and does not try to disparage people who believe otherwise.  The people who say “I think” and then merely regurgitate someone else’s opinion can be frustrating.  I used to enjoy agitating people like that, now I generally avoid them.  This is the dilemma, if I think I understand the problem better than them; could be I missing a jewel of an insight by ignoring them or am I being an arrogant fool?