Old Time Radio at OTRCat!

Saturday, September 17, 2011

OOOOOOH! Did you FEEL that?!?                                                                                                                                                                             

Well, it appears that our Aardvark shop has a haint!

Riatsila and I have both experienced our Walker. Late at night, and in the wee hours, we have both heard footsteps in our second floor, where no-one was. Going upstairs has often yielded near-terminal cases of goosebumps and hair standing on end (no mean feat for me!), but no evidence of Anyone There. (The sound we hear is not "floor-settling" nor mouse scurrying. It is the sound of someone walking.) The previous tenant reports the same, as well as seeing an apparition at the top of the stairs.

I have no inclination to take steps against our guest; I do not believe that "ghosts" are the disembodied dead, unconvinced of their moribundity. Nor do I think that they are fell apparitions protecting their psychic turf. I don't even think it is Farmer McGillicuddy in a rubber mask, muttering about "meddling kids". I suspect, in a Lewisian way, that things like this are part of the spiritual flora and fauna of a place. The dryads and nymphs may have existed as part of the ecology of our world, no harm, no foul, but the decision to worship these entities was the error.

Whatever it may be, something is making itself known- perhaps inadvertently- and I will be interested to watch this play out.

Tuesday, September 13, 2011

Mr. McLeod notes on Fa-CHAYBook that O'Bama Is doing the Tried and True, taking money from those who create jobs to give to them wot's not got jobs; all this to create jobs.

Our Prexy is a genius, he is. I'm so glad we have a man who has been a CEO and knows how business works in the White House.

...oh wait...

In other news- a dear friend who has been dangling on a bureaucratic thread for months finally got the news: he cannot buy the house, because the property has a garage separate from the house. He might open a business and make money in the garage, and the particular government loan program cannot permit that. Because he MIGHT do something. Welcome to Minority Report.

"There is no help in the House of Jesse."

Monday, September 12, 2011

Shirt by Planetary Bargains

The Dread Dormomoo and I are in a Perilous Place. Whilst we have not drunk the Kool-ade, We have eaten the cookies.

I find that I no longer have any problem believing that our Givemint is capable of doing anything. Not in a good way. Not in a "We can go to the Moon, and thence to the planets, thence to the STARS!" way, but in an "inside job to bring down major skyscrapers, to enable us to start some wars, and take the People's liberty in the name of national security" way.

I mean, when you have congressmen who justify outrageous and unConstitutional spending by invoking "the Good and Plenty Clause", it is certain that you are not gonna get any sense or truth out of Congress. The President passes off his old jobs stimulus speech as a NEW jobs bill speech, I guess because the dog ate his homework. That's credible. We have flag waving lackeys burbling about "Our boys protecting Our Way of Life", which on the face of it is true, but not the constitutional, Norman Rockwell American way of life you think. They protect the gate rape, email-scanning, surveillance camera-ridden, SECURE way of life we currently enjoy.

 I am developing the firm conviction that when The Opposition starts the name-calling, then you are on the right track. They have no substantive argument, so instead they go "Nya-nya-nya-nya-boo-boo."  "Truther", "(fill-in-the-blank) Denier!" Like that.

"Full faith and credit." Like fun.

Time to reprint my old Ben Franklin shirt. "Those who would give up essential liberty to purchase a little temporary safety deserve neither liberty nor safety."

Sunday, September 11, 2011

Yet more doctrinal stupidity.

Our local talk station (the one that launched the Hannitoad) shall we say changes formats on Sunday mornings. Local churches sponsor half-hour preaching sessions. I know if I was a wastrel coming off of a Saturday-night bender, the first thing I would tune in would be radio preaching.

One thing I appreciate: churches of Christ do not beg money on radio or TV, being convinced that all church funding come from the local congregants' contributions. No bake sales, bazaars, or swap meets. And no begging.

What a victorious message for churches of whatever stripe to go begging to the world for funds!

Radio preaching...a local Primitive Baptist church sponsors recordings from the Cincinnati Primitive Baptist Church, The Baptist Bible Hour, with Elder Lasserre Bradley Jr. Listening to this seasoned pulpiteer is like listening to Pat Buttram, but that is only a stylistic thing. He beats the "sovereign grace" drum loud and long. Today he was talking about a particularly stupid teaching making the rounds nowadays, that of "needing to forgive God". He gave it precisely as much credence as it deserves. The idea that I, the creature, must magnanimously "forgive" the Creator so that I can get past summat is comical, and tragic. Behold My Feelings upon the Throne of the universe. In order to feel better, I may have to forGIVE the Almighty because He didn't keep Fluffy Muffins the kitty from running out into traffic. My Momma died when I was five. I must forGIVE God because "He took my mommy". This whole idea reeks of hubris, showcasing the idea that my feelings are the ne plus ultra of creation (the truth being that even my feelings must bow the knee to the Lordship of Christ. Practical examples of this reside in the Psalms - yes, I know, old covenant, but the mechanism is there). The idea of my forgiving The Sinless is astoundingly, astonishingly foolish, in the Biblical sense.

Now, Bradley was working off of a riff with which I disagree, that one should never be angry at God.
God can take care of Himself. The man after God's own heart, King David, was acquainted with Having a Mad On at God. He could be a sulky-boy. 

1David again brought together out of Israel chosen men, thirty thousand in all. 2He and all his men set out from Baalah of Judah  to bring up from there the ark of God, which is called by the Name,  the name of the Lord Almighty, who is enthroned between the cherubim that are on the ark. 3They set the ark of God on a new cart and brought it from the house of Abinadab, which was on the hill. Uzzah and Ahio, sons of Abinadab, were guiding the new cart 4with the ark of God on it,  and Ahio was walking in front of it. 5David and the whole house of Israel were celebrating with all their might before the Lord, with songs  and with harps, lyres, tambourines, sistrums and cymbals.
6When they came to the threshing floor of Nacon, Uzzah reached out and took hold of the ark of God, because the oxen stumbled. 7The Lord’s anger burned against Uzzah because of his irreverent act; therefore God struck him down and he died there beside the ark of God.
8Then David was angry because the Lord’s wrath had broken out against Uzzah, and to this day that place is called Perez Uzzah. 
 I Samuel 6 1-8

David was clearly mad at God, and he was not struck down for it.  Three months later, he was back dancing before the Lord.  This follows a pattern in David's life. Psalm 77 is a perfect example. In verses 1-9, David pours out his complaint to the Lord. Then, verses 10-12 serve as a pivot:

10 Then I thought, "To this I will appeal: the years of the right hand of the Most High." 11 I will remember the deeds of the LORD; yes, I will remember your miracles of long ago. 12 I will meditate on all your works and consider all your mighty deeds.

He moves through the rest of the psalm, putting his focus on God's mighty acts on behalf of Israel, and in that, appropriating them as his own. This is no "name it and claim it" thaumaturgy; David is reprogramming his attitude, and re-establishing his relationship with God.

A quick perusal of the entire collection of psalms will yield a trove of examples like this. If I am grumpy at God, or even mouth-frothingly angry, the issue is most likely with me. If I do as David did, and think of the manifold works of God, through history, in Christ Jesus, and in my life, I will reprogram myself, get myself out of myself, and get my attention and attitude back to where it should be.

Bottom line: there is nothing in the Scripture that states "don't get mad at the Almighty". There is even less instructing us of some need to "forgive God". Such New-Agey feelgoodism is foreign to the Scriptures. And it's foolish and stupid and dumb, oh my.


Tuesday, September 06, 2011

Runt was as he was named, the puny one of the litter. Mr. McLeod adopted him, named him, and made certain that he survived. Runt not only survived, he thrived, and grew to become the pater familias of the yard cats. We live in a rural area, with many pesky vermin about, and the cats,if not actively hunting them, at least keep them away. Runt became the biggest cat here, and lived it, until two interlopers were left here, cats of irredeemable natures, whereupon he faded into the woods for a couple of years, opting for solitude rather than interminable quarrels. When they went away, Runt returned in full vigor, and stayed on. He was big, not fat, and grumpy. He sired a veritable race of tuxedo cats, and did not let them get out of line. At feeding time, Runt had His Bowl, and whoever stuck his nose in to poach from it was soundly cuffed. He was silent, giving a growly chuckle when you scratched his head. He would tolerate a minimum of head-scratching , maybe a stroke of his neck and back, and that was enough. He would shake his head and walk away. He did not enjoy being picked up in the least. He was a Cat's Cat, a tom with no tolerance for fuss or foofery. Periodically he would range back into the woods, and the screams were horrible to hear. Imagine the cries of a rabid baby. Like that. He would come back, sometimes with a limp, ears bitten, legs clawed, and he would set about healing, until the next time. 

In the past year, a large and unpleasant yellow tom has been coming into the yard, and I believe Runt's woodland battles were with him.  Runt was ten-to-twelve years old, and the final battle got the better of him. He limped for a long time, and then began to lose ground, growing thin and stiff. We were used to his vernal catting about, disappearing for some weeks, then returning thin and hungry. He would eat and lounge and bulk up again.

This year, he didn't. He became increasingly slow, but not doddering. Runt kept his faculties until the end, recognising us, and allowing the indignity of more pets and pats than was normal. He became a more tolerant cat, mellow and more affectionate, actually encouraging being petted, just not for too long. I suppose he had his reputation to see to. This weekend past, while I was away at a convention, Runt went missing, and my wife found him under a bush in the back yard. Cats have a wisdom about this, it seems, and know when the spirit is to return to the God Who gave it. It had rained, and he ws cold, and having trouble moving. She dried him and saw to his comfort - he ate well to the last - and later found him...gone. 

I had been praying for Runt for some weeks, that his ending would be peaceful, and that he would go to that place where good cats and faithful go.  He lived well, and died where he chose.
If animals have an Undying Part (and the scripture cited above makes me wonder), I shall hope to see him again somewhen. If  not, well, we have a host of memories of the Old Man, and that will be sufficient.

Thank you, Runt. You chose to walk with us, when the woods could have been enough.