Sunday, December 6, 2009

Tube Socks, The Farside, and Family - The True Meaning of Christmas

Some time ago when I was a teenager, I stopped covetting every new gadget or toy promoted around the Christmas Holiday. As a parochial school student, I was exposed to the Christmas Story and had great opportunities to think both academically and spiritually on the birth, death, and resurrection of Jesus Christ; however, private Catholic school didn't break my fascination with gifts around the holidays. I can't point out the exact moment that it occurred, but I found my reason for Christmas.

Many know that Christians believe that God sent his only son Jesus to help all men achieve grace. Jesus was destined to suffer for the sins of all humankind, past and present, for which I am eternally a big fan. If you are familiar with the story of Abraham and Isaac, Abraham had not been able to sire a child until Isaac and God asks him to sacrifice this one and only son. Fortunately, God let Abraham off the hook at the last minute. God, on the other hand, knew Jesus would have to be scarificed for the sins of all mankind. There could be no last minute get out of jail free card for Jesus. The birth of Jesus is considered by many as the first Christmas gift.

Around the Christmas holiday, many people seem to get so involved in finding sale items or hard-to-find kids toys that the spirit of that first Christmas gift seems to be lost in the shuffle. If Christian churches had lines of church-goers rounding a city block and waiting at the door Christmas day then one could say we got it. If my family started the Christmas morning festivities singing a round of Happy Birthday, we could say we get it. There is more to Christmas for me, as I mentioned, when I got "it" as a teenager.

I think we are stuck with some of the commercial hype. I think we are fortunate to have things like midnight mass and Sunday Christmas services. I find solace in these few truths about Christmas. I plan to write about each of these topics at some point down the road.

Number one, tube socks are a gift from the heart.

Number two, The Farside Off-The-Wall Calendar was and will always be the commercial gift that I wanted, every year.

Number three, Christmas is the best draw to see the most family. The best reason, other than the birth of Jesus, to celebrate Christmas.

Sunday, November 29, 2009

Pre-historic and Modern Parenting

Kids are wonderful beings which we parents try to mold, to protect, and to uplift. I realize there are bad parents out there. The majority of us who are parents or had parents can say with some certainty that parents aren't intentionally bad at parenting, we just make our mistakes.

Some time ago for which we do not have written records, men taught their sons how to hunt and women taught their girls to gather. I'm sure it wasn't a good idea to lash a spearhead on to a spear without a double knot. Nor was it sage advice to mistake a poisonous root for an edible tuber. Humans dating back much longer than we can tell in stories had parents who worried about educating their children.

Of course, prehistoric humans made some fatal and near-fatal mistakes. I bet the teenagers thought they had the worst parents when mom fed them the wrong root or dad wouldn't let the youngsters hunt big game. All the other young men were allowed to hunt. No one else had a mom who was a bad cook.

Though the disappointments may be different today, kids don't appreciate that parents are fallible. Kids don't appreciate that their parents may have a good reason for grounding them from the big hunt.

Saturday, November 21, 2009

Why Post Anything

In a first attempt to air my beliefs, notions, inklings, and even some higher-level thinking, I decided today to start a blog. I have a lot of friends and acquaintances who publish something on the web regularly. I know a few people well who write books. I, on the other hand, write stuff on paper and usually throw it away.

I decided to start this blog, for the most part, because I am curious. Will anyone really pay attention to my ramblings? Will anyone really take One Fish for the Road seriously enough to seek the gems?