Thursday, October 31, 2019

Love the Emperor

Not really many presidents or other politicians (or Trump) that I’d like to hang out with. Or actors or newspeople or even athletes and maybe some preachers. So many are power-hungry and megalomaniacs and self-obsessed. That said, some in office do better than others at getting the business of the government conducted with the best interests of the citizens at heart. Would be nice if they did this humbly and quietly, but you can’t have everything.
Last week’s lesson was on I Peter 2:13-25. 13 Be subject for the Lord’s sake to every human institution, whether it be to the emperor as supreme 16 or to governors as sent by him to punish those who do evil and to praise those who do good. 15 For this is the will of God, that by doing good you should put to silence the ignorance of foolish people. 17 Honor everyone. Love the brotherhood. Fear God. Love the emperor. 18 Servants be subject to your masters with all respect, not only to the good and gentle but also to the unjust.
We live in a fallen, sinful world. Like the people Peter was writing to, we are but sojouners on the Earth. Our citizenship is in Heaven. Still it makes you wonder why God would allow certain people (like Trump, etc.) to be President of the United States. The US is not God’s chosen nation – that’s Israel. All this must be part of God’s overall plan. Just think how much worse the Anti-Christ will be – a wolf in sheep’s clothing.
Just finished one book on Harry Truman and started another. Seems like a decent, hard-working, stand-up guy, as Presidents go. I used to think the 1950’s might’ve been a good time to live, but it sounds like there were problems and fears even during those postwar years.
I don’t get the paper AJC so not sure which of New York Times columnist Nicholas Kristof’s columns was printed. Looks like his most recent one about Trump was from Oct 19.
All the more recently with the sad state the US is in these days seems like some church people are trying to separate church from government and country, and just focus on God and Jesus and love. Traditionally church and love/support of country have gone together but less and less here recently. These days since the outcry against government becoming louder and louder I consider myself a contrarian, wanting to support the US all the more. Used to have a US flag on the old Civic. Politicians should wear US flag pins on their lapels. Why don’t they do this?
I’m just not crazy about flags on football helmets and other special uniforms for Memorial Day and Independence Day – because I’m a uniform freak. There are too many uniforms. Teams should wear their regular uniforms. The Astros wore orange jerseys at least 23 times this year. College football helmets have enough stickers, too many in fact. Is an American flag sticker really needed? Same with college basketball uniforms. EXCEPTION: wearing flags on unis during wartime is a good, patriotic thing.

Wednesday, October 30, 2019

Your College Park Skyhawks

The NBA G-League College Park SkyHawks team are
fixing to start their season. The arena is down near the airport. Might be fun to go to a game. I was checking out the new Gateway Center at in College Park, near the airport. Seats 3500. Did not realize the Dream was moving to the same arena as the Skyhawks. After I got your email I still had the website up so I went back and found the story about the Dream making the move. On Nov 9th I hope to attend the Skyhawks open house.

Young Trae Young is lighting it up for the Hawks. Did the Sixers make an effort to shut down Trae in the second half, or did he just go cold? Only 25 points / 9 rebounds. Well we talk about Trae Young and he strains his ankle. When I went to bed the Grizzlies were leading the Lakers. Anthony Davis of the Lakers double dribbled, but it wasn't called.   
This past Sunday Oct 27 was the only day in calendar year 2019 there were games played in the NFL, NLB, NBA, NHL, and PGA. Probably MLS as well but who cares. Not NBA E-League. I keep telling people about Grizz Gaming and they look at my like I am crazy. I posted it on my blog but only nine people saw it. At least I'm ahead of the curve on something.

Saw where Atlanta is getting an Overwatch team – the Atlanta Reign. The team is to be run by Cox Enterprises, which owned WSB channel 2 and AM750, etc. I know a couple of guys who work at Cox. Maybe they can get me tickets.   
See where Tiger tied Sam Snead's record for most wins all-time? I got the notification and changed the channel, but didn't see an interview.

Georgia home teams I've seen:
Braves at AFC, Turner, Shea, Busch, & SunTrust
Falcons at AFC, Grant Field, Ga Dome, & MBS
Hawks at Omni, Alexander, State Farm
GTBB at Alexander, Stegeman, & Omni
GTFB at Grant Field, Sanford Stadium
GT baseball at Russ Chandler & Luther Williams
UGAFB at Grant Field, Sanford Stadium
UGABB at Stegeman, Alexander
UGA baseball at Foley & Luther Williams
Flames at Omni
Thrashers at State Farm
Oglethorpe at Oglethorpe, Macon Coliseum
Mercer at Mercer & Macon Coliseum
Peaches at Luther Williams
Bacon at Luther Williams
Whoopies at Macon Coliseum
Rome Braves
Gwinnett Braves/Stripers
Augusta GreenJackets
Georgia State in Panthersville
Dream at Phillips Arena
Skyhawks at College Park?
Tuesday: stopped for more Halloween candy last night, after working past six. Also stopped for gas. Ceil was at her Tuesday ministry and Anna had fixed her own supper. I ate some potato salad, Anna's leftover sweet potato wedges, chips and salsa, and a fun size Butterfinger. Later A baked pumpkin bread with chocolate chips, so I had a piece of that.
Monday night we'd had a problem with the Hulu TV working through the Apple TV unit. We could still project TV from our phones and computers onto the TV, but it wasn't ideal. Last night I was able to get someone from Amazon to help me fix the problem. Worked on the first try.
Guess you didn't see the World Series hubbub. A Nats batter was called out for not running in the foul territory lane to first base. The bad throw pulled the first baseman's glove into the path of the runner, and the batter inadvertently knocked off the first baseman's mitt. Plate umpire Sam Holbrook had positioned himself to watch the batter run down the first base line, and immediately called the batter out for not running in the lane. Instead of runners at 2nd & 3rd with no out the Nats had one out and a runner on second. The Nats argued and protested, then hit a 2 run homer to extend their lead. 
Holbrook was the ump who'd called the phantom infield fly in the Braves/Cards NLCS that fell down the left field line between the third baseman and left fielder, in a spot so tough no one could get to and the popup fell in the outfield grass, and instead of scoring the Braves lost.

FRANK ROBINSON [SABR Bio] was the only Rookie of the Year Award winner for the Redlegs - ROY in 1956. CIN/NL Reds were the "Redlegs" 1954-58. Hint:    He was the first native of Texas to win a Gold Glove in the outfield. His only GG in 1958. B. in Beaumont, Texas. Roy McMillan from Texas had also won the year before, but at shortstop. He went to college, but not to play baseball. Attended Xavier University briefly in Cincinnati after the 1956 season.
Pitchers with career minimums of 100 wins, 100 losses and 100 saves.
416 1071 3.50 Dennis Eckersly HOF
337 0944 2.90 Rollie Fingers HOF
290 1002 3.96 Rich Gossage HOF
249 1070 2.52 Hoyt Wilhelm HOF
212 0723 3.33 John Smoltz HOF
196 0987 3.45 McDaniel
170 0890 3.96 Tom Gordon
155 0704 3.24 Miller
109 0751 3.46 Reed
078 0736 3.75 Kline
WSL = wins plus saves minus losses

Tuesday, October 29, 2019

The Blob

Anna had spent the weekend in Athens. Her lip had swollen up but was back normal just in time for her to go to work yesterday. She ate supper with us: BBQ chicken, tossed salad, green beans, and purple potatoes with sour cream and cheese. I did the dishes and watched The Neighborhood.
Gonna be busy this week. Month end. Busy customer. Coworker on vacation. Friday we had our lunch meeting which took up an hour. I was trying to get caught up so there wouldn’t be so much double work this week while he was out. Boss was out and the three other team members spent two hours giving blood, leaving me alone to take calls, enter PO’s, receive PO’s, and bill off remote orders. They completely forgot abut a conference call with the customer. Due to a new customer demand that had increased work, I had already taken back work previously delegated to others. Still other projects aren’t getting done because of blood drives, committee meetings, and service projects. Then I came in this morning and had to do something else a team member had forgot. Hate to let work get in the way of other’s good time.
So I wasn’t in a good mood when I left work at 5:30. Splurged on a pair of all white sneakers. Ceil might’ve fixed black beans and rice. M was home and ate with us. Caught up on Fresh Off the Boat and a few others shows.
Saturday morning small group at Chickfila. I was sitting facing the window. Was there from 8:25 to 10-10 am and there was a constant stream of cars through the drive thru the whole time. Same with the Starbucks next door. Afterwards I picked up copies for Ceil. She volunteered at a nearby road race sponsored by the YMCA.
Came home and straightened upstairs. Took photos of more sneakers and posted 14 more for sale on eBay. Tretorns. Blue Nikes. White Nikes. Black Nikes. Blue hightops. Blue Jordans. Jean jacket. Golden State tshirt. 49ers helmet. Black Jordans. Red Nikes. Red adidas. Wool cap. Already have for sale: black Chuck Taylors. Black Nikes. Music book. A bobblehead. Brown boots. Blue Vans. Black boots. Black hightops. White Chuck Taylor hightops. Packaged and shipped a pair of New Balance. Just sold another pair of Chuck Taylors and two bobbleheads. Already sold three pair of Anna’s sneakers, plus my New Balance 990s, black Chucks, brown Vans, and three pairs of Nikes. Got more I need to post.

Washed and folded laundry. Did the dishes. Made turkey and black bean quesadillas for lunch. Posted on eBay while watched football: OK/Kansas State. LSU/Auburn. Clemson/BC. Some SC/Tenn. Michigan/Notre Dame.
Sunday School & Worship. More on the giving series, this time from the new guy. Goal for next week’s offering: $3 million. Bryant Wright had requested to not be given a big retirement gift but instead have a big missions offering.
After church I made a bank deposit and picked up M’s Jeep from Whole Foods. Ate lunch, changed clothes, and got the Jeep emissions done. Stopped by to get a new gas cap. Laundry. Blew leaves off the gutters and away from the house. Cut the grass. Blew the driveway. Crashed on the couch. Grits and eggs. Read my book. Fresh Off the Boat. Speechless. Pats/Browns. A little World Series. I had no idea what time the game started. I just had the game on as background as I read and worked on the laptop, in case something newsworthy happened. Flipped a coin and baseball won out over NFL GB/KC.
Monday: battling work emergencies all day means I gotta stick around to get a little work done. Not everyone does this, but its easier to get things done when you give others plenty of time to do their part. Harder when every single time the raw material arrives at the last minute and the fabricator has to drop everything and work on your order.
Having problems with the wi-fi so I'm kinda picture on the old blog these days. 
Stopped by on the way home to stock up on Halloween candy. Are you ready?

RON REED was the winning pitcher of the game where Hank Aaron passed Babe Ruth on the all-time home run list - Aaron G = 08-Apr-1973 Reed shares a hometown with one of the major leagues’ most notorious owners. Reed and Charlie O. Finley both hail from LaPorte, Indiana. He was acquired by the Cardinals to replace Bob Gibson in their pitching rotation. On 28-May-1975 he was traded by ATL with a player to be named later to STL for Ray Sadecki and Elias SosaHe did replace Gibson in the STL rotation. Drafted 20 overall by Detroit in 1965. Drafted by the Detroit Pistons of the NBA. He played for them for 2 seasons.

Monday, October 28, 2019

Beware the Backup QB

Oklahoma just didn’t show up against Kansas State. K State just pounded the ball up the middle the whole game and the Sooners couldn’t stop them. Lang got it right, the Sooner Scooner got toppled a week too early. Jalen Hurts still had a big day. On the play before Oklahoma’s last TD it looked like the right tackled moved too early, but it wasn’t called. But then the replay corrected reversed the last onside kick. Sooners still have a shot at the Playoff. Better than one loss Oregon.
LSU beat their third top ten team and might have to play four more if they make it to the national championship game. QB Joe Burrow making a run at the Heisman. Auburn hung tough on the road. Will be tough for UGA to beat Auburn.
Bama routed Arkansas. Tua’s injury is hurting his Heisman hopes – he’ll have to finish strong. AL QB Mack Davis completed 6 of 9 (or was it 16-19?) showing they got a good system over there. Two backup QBs of note saw action: Tua’s little brother, and for Arkansas the grandson of Dallas Cowboys owner Jerry Jones.
Clemson dominated Boston College, who was without their first string dual threat QB. Trevor Lawrence is playing better, probably because he got rid of his orange shoes. Speaking of backup QBs, Clemson played backup Chase Bryce as well as some kid who wore number 92. The announcers said that late in the game during routs Dabo will tell backup defensive backs to go in and play wide receiver, even though they haven’t practiced at the position. Just to get them playing time. More like so Dabo can say he played 110 kids. Think of the logistics to do that. Even if you go 4 deep at all eleven positions both ways, that’s only 88 plus a kicker and punter make 90. Gotta go 5 deep.   
Michigan beat up on Notre Dame, ending the Irish’s playoff hopes. The Michigan backup QB saw action: Dylan McCaffery, brother of Panthers All Pro RB Christian McCaffery. 

I guess the Falcons showed up to play the second half. Matt Schaub threw for 460 yards, showing that it isn’t the QB position that’s the Falcon’s problem. Nice to see the Birds wearing their throwbacks.  

Former Falcon WR Muhammed Sanu landed with the Patriots, and started catching passes right away. Difference in the Pats and Browns – the Browns kept turning the ball over. Poor Nick Chubb had two fumbles. Sony Michel fared better for the Pats. Tom Brady must’ve been taken aback when Browns WR Odel Beckham gave Brady his shoes after the game. Before the season Beckham had said he was happy to be a Brown with former LSU teammate Jarvis Landry as well as QB Baker Mayfield. Is Beckham trying to sneak his way onto the Pats? I guess Brady can auction them off for charity. Mayfield wasn’t happy about the transaction.
Saw an interesting NFL onside kick. A punter drop-kicked a squib  kick.
Next week’s games:
330 #7 UGA @ # 6 FLA
400 Pitt @ GT
400 Wofford @ Clemson
700 Ole Miss @ Auburn
730 Vandy @ South Carolina
800 Oregon @ USC
I can’t believe GA opened as a favorite over Florida. Bama, LSU, Oklahoma, Penn State, and Ohio State don’t have games.  
Someone on Twitter called Herschel the greatest college RB ever. Got little argument. Then some ninny said Barry Sanders “owned” Herschel in the NFL, yardage wise. He had no reply to my response, that Herschel retired 2nd all-time in combined yards. Just as many yards as Barry, even without Walker’s USFL yards. So many excuses. If Barry had started more than one year. If Thurman hadn’t kept him on the bench. If Marcus Allen hadn’t had to play fullback. If Bo hadn’t been hurt all the time. Herschel had a lot of excuses in the NFL: had to play FB, WR, FL, TE in Dallas, got traded for a king’s ransom to set up the Cowboys dynasty, then never featured in Minn, NYG, Philly, or Dallas. Played special teams. USFL stats and awards ignored. Yet still Herschel put up HOF numbers in the NFL. Barry wouldn’t have been able to go pro after his junior season had Herschel not first blazed that trail.
Astros have won three straight. The visiting team has won the first five games. Hasn’t happened since the 1996 Braves/Yankees World Series. Did the Nats lose last night because their fans booed the President of the United States? Some compared it to the Braves jinxing themselves by not passing out tomahawks in game 5 against the Cardinals. That’s the last game I was interested in.
Why I’m rooting for the Astros: the Nats are the Braves division rivals. If Washington wins we’ll never hear the end of it from the national media, who loves teams from the great northeastern media centers. Guarantee you the 2020 NL East picks will be (1) Nats (2) Phils. The Nats third baseman is a good guy. Pitcher Scherzer is a little like Greg Maddux, but still light years from any of Greg’s records. Meanwhile the Astros have three great starters, two MVP candidates, and a great team. If they wore Yankee unis the media couldn’t get enough of them. But they’re in Houston, so they get little attention.  
JOHN SMOLTZ [SABR Bio] record for career postseason strikeouts was broken by Justin Verlander Tuesday night in Houston. Smoltz had stuck out 199 postseason batters ending in the 2009 NLDS.  Verlander entered the G w/196 postseason Ks and struck out 6 Nats before succumbing to their offensive onslaught. Smoltz was the first pitcher to surrender a hit to an Orioles pitcher after the advent of the Designated Hitter. Surrendered a single to Mike Mussina 14-Jun-1997 in ATL. His famous pitching coach Leo Mazzone insisted, “Greatest slider I’ve ever seen from a right-handed pitcher.” He is known for seldom losing any wager related to his golf game (not true: even Jeff Francouer has hustled Smoltz on the links). Golf Digest ranks him among the top golfers in MLB.

Sunday, October 27, 2019

Dennison on the Emmys

Another recent blog post from Jim  Dennison, former SPdL pastor (busy weekend, and I had nothing else in the can ready to post - except photos).

Game of Thrones won for Outstanding Drama Series at last night’s Emmys, making it the most-awarded narrative series in the history of the Emmys. Fleabag won for Outstanding Comedy Series. Jodie Comer and Billy Porter received Outstanding Lead Actress and Lead Actor in a Drama Series.
Here is what I noted: Except for a few minutes watching a late-night talk show here or there, I did not see a single show that was nominated. Not one.

Advice I wish I always followed

Part of the explanation could be that much of popular culture is aimed at people half my age. Another factor is that I have to go to bed early each night to finish this article early the next morning.
But I suspect the largest reason for the disconnect between the 2019 Emmys and my television-watching habits is that Janet and I choose to watch shows that do not dishonor the Lord and his word. I’m not suggesting that every nominated show fails this standard, but many do.
Scripture calls us to “be holy in all your conduct” (1 Peter 1:15). In that light, we should heed the warning of the eighteenth-century scientist G. C. Lichtenberg: “Never undertake anything for which you wouldn’t have the courage to ask the blessing of heaven.”
I wish I could tell you that I always follow his advice. But I do recognize the truth of his assertion.

“The euthanasia of Christianity”

The popularity of television shows that contradict the biblical worldview reveals that many people do not realize there is a biblical worldview.
God’s word speaks to every dimension of every moment of life, not just our Sunday worship or Monday prayers. Abraham Kuyper was right: “There is not a square inch in the whole domain of our human existence over which Christ, who is Sovereign over all, does not cry, Mine!”
When we make Jesus our Lord, we must stand against all that stands against him. Unfortunately, many see Christianity as little more than a means to our personal happiness. If we attended church services yesterday and read the Bible and pray today, all will be well with us, or so we think.
There is little price to pay for following such a faith. To the contrary, it exists for us, not us for it.
Sadly, Friedrich Nietzsche’s scornful description of popular Christianity is even truer now than when he penned it in 1881: “A God who, in his love, ordains everything so that it may be best for us . . . so that everything at length goes on smoothly and there is no reason left why we should take life ill or grumble about it: in short, resignation and modesty raised to the rank of divinities—that is the best and most lifelike remnant of Christianity now left to us.”
As a result, he claims, Christians live in “the belief that, in the entire universe, benevolence and honest sentiments will finally prevail.” Nietzsche calls this state of affairs “the euthanasia of Christianity.

The peril of popularity

Biblical Christians know that the opposite is actually true. Scripture calls Satan “the god of this world” (2 Corinthians 4:4). As a “thief [who] comes only to steal and kill and destroy” (John 10:10), the devil “prowls around like a roaring lion, seeking someone to devour” (1 Peter 5:8).
Consequently, Christians “do not wrestle against flesh and blood, but against the rulers, against the authorities, against the cosmic powers over this present darkness” (Ephesians 6:12).
In a fallen world like ours, popularity can be perilous. Jesus warned us: “Woe to you, when all people speak well of you, for so their fathers did to the false prophets” (Luke 6:26). If you must choose between temporary fame and eternal reward, choose the latter. Every time.

What crown do you seek today?

Martin Luther King Jr.: “Cowardice asks the question, ‘Is it safe?’ Expediency asks the question, ‘Is it politic?’ Vanity asks the question, ‘Is it popular?’ But conscience asks the question,’ Is it right?’ And there comes a time when one must take a position that is neither safe, nor politic, nor popular; but one must take it because it is right.”
The man for whom Dr. King was named observed: “They gave our Master a crown of thorns. Why do we hope for a crown of roses?” (Martin Luther).
By contrast, our Master promised: “Be faithful unto death, and I will give you the crown of life” (Revelation 2:10).

Saturday, October 26, 2019


The Field of Dreams Complex in Iowa continues to grow larger.
There is a La Fonda on Roswell Road at the corner of West Wieuca, near that wing place we ate at after the Super Bowl Experience. It’s small and crowded. We like the La Fonda on Howell Mill better, not far from The Optimist. We have a guy at work from Cornelia, so I’ll ask him about Fender’s Diner. 
Not much here. Worked until 5:30 and drove home. Ceil cooked black beans and rice, with sausage bits. Also kale. Supposedly the new thing to do is eat out of large bowls instead of dinner plates. Whatever. Watched Schooled and Chicago Med.
Talked to Will, but not much to report. We may go on a road trip one day soon. Might also take off a day and take a road trip with Ceil, to North Georgia or maybe Clemson.
Sales meeting at lunch Friday. Willy’s Mexican. I made a salad with lettuce, meat, cheese, and salsa.
Remembering Big Ben, and those marvelous striped Falcon uniforms. 

Take these phrases off your resume…
1. A proven track record of…
2. Responsible for…
3. With a passion for…
4. Goal-oriented” you’d better be!
5. Team player” you’d better be!
6. Detail oriented” you’d better be!
7. “Synergy” is often misused
8. Excellent communication skills
How to work in corporate America…
1. Showing up is half the battle.
2. Emotions, not actions, speak louder than words. Keep your cool.
3. You’ll meet some amazing people: learn from them.
4. You’ll see the people that you screw over later in life. It’s a small world. Never burn bridges.
5. Your network is far more important than your knowledge.
6. Moving around helps to maintain and acquire skills.
7. Take time to understand the value you provide.
8. Sell yourself, sell your ideas, but don’t sell out.
9. Intuition should not be ignored. Speak up when your guy is telling you something.
10. Your work is not your self-worth.
11. We aren’t all cut out for management positions.
How to be the person at work that everyone wants to work with.
Lean back – let others speak. Listen.
Prepare conversation gifts.
Ask thought provoking questions.
Tell interesting (not boring) stories)
Delegate the things you like, the good stuff.
Joy is contagious. Smile.
Delight others by noticing what is important to them.
Initiate conversations with shy colleagues.
Things unsuccessful people do on the weekend – written I’m sure by a high-achiever.
Forget to schedule.
Ignore loved ones.
Let technology take over (check work emails).
Forget to unwind.
Sleep the entire time.
Rack up expenses.
Avoid taking time to reflect.
They aren’t present.
Laze around and regret it.
Stay stressed out.
Get too comfortable with the time off.