A Bridge Across Time

You never know when you’ll run into someone really interesting.

This afternoon I was in the hallway where parents and grandparents were waiting to pick up their kids (and grandkids) from preschool.  I was talking with one of the grandfathers, who is turning 76 next week.  He told me about listening to a Washington Redskins game on the radio with his dad in December 1941, when the game was interrupted with the news that the Japanese had bombed Pearl Harbor.  That in itself was scary enough, but what made it worse was that they didn’t know where Pearl Harbor was!  He then told me about how he lived in Baltimore during the war and used to watch the American ships that had been torpedoed as they were dragged into the harbor there in Baltimore.

We got to talking about local history and he told me about visiting Ocean City for the first time in 1947.  This was before the construction of the bridge spanning the Chesapeake Bay, so you either had to drive up into Delaware and go around it or take a ferry across the bay–a ferry that didn’t hold many cars and didn’t run very often.  Even when the bridge was built in the 1950s, he said that it was only one lane each way–and each lane had two lanes of traffic feeding into it.  Talk about a bottleneck!  Ocean City, he said, was just sand from 16th Street up to Delaware.  Things sure have changed!

Everyone over 70 should write a book.

Here’s a link to an article about the history of the bridge.

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Published in: on April 27, 2009 at 1:27 pm  Comments (2)  

Rain

If you stop and think about it, it’s kind of weird how sometimes a whole bunch of water falls out of the sky.

Not only that, but it’s also weird how we have an entire industry based on trying to figure out when it’s going to happen.

Published in: on April 15, 2009 at 1:29 pm  Comments (4)  

Downpour

Sometimes you just gotta stop and watch the rain.

Published in: on April 6, 2009 at 10:31 am  Leave a Comment  

The Other National Pastime

When my younger brother Dylan and I were kids, we used to amuse ourselves by taking baseball cards and doctoring them up a little bit.  Recently I came across a few samples:

Published in: on April 1, 2009 at 2:50 pm  Comments (2)  

Random Thoughts in Alphabetical Order: The Letter B

B is for…

  • Babies.  I still can’t believe we’re having one.  That just totally blows my mind.  Every time Carolyn walks through the door after getting home from work, it still startles me when I see her babyized belly.  (She said I should write a blog post–based on experience–about what not to say to your pregnant wife, such as, “Whoa!!!”)  I can really see the wisdom of God in having people bring in a new generation about every 25 years.  And it’s cool that at any given time, someone somewhere is adding a new person to the population.  If we didn’t have little children around us, life would become so stale.  As much as we might resist, we tend to set like cement.  Every new child is like wet cement.  They’re still shapeable, impressionable.  They have a fresh perspective on everything and still marvel at everything their senses take in.  For example, a child on a playground will see a bug and yell, “Bug!  I see a bug!”  All the other kids will run over to stare in wonder at the bug.  Meanwhile, as adults we tend to view bugs simply as something to be sprayed or stepped on.  Wow, I just totally can’t wait to hear Laura Marie’s observations on the world around her.  I’m so thrilled that I get to witness her trying to put the pieces together.
  • Bathrooms.  I’m so grateful I live in the era of indoor plumbing.  While there’s something primally pleasing about standing in the woods under a starry sky and… um… communing with nature, it sure is nice to have indoor facilities when it’s 20 degrees outside.  And being able to take a hot shower at any time?  That’s just awesome.  The only problem with bathrooms is their constant need for cleaning, which is not exactly a skill I’ve got in my toolbox.
  • Bologna.  Can we just go ahead and officially change the spelling to “baloney”?  Is there a Facebook group I can join to promote this cause?  When I was a kid I absolutely loved bologna sandwiches.  Some of my favorite memories are staying with my grandmother in Fort Worth and eating the delicious bologna sandwiches she made me.  Now I can’t even smell the stuff without feeling like I’m going to puke.  What is it about being a kid and being able to eat nasty stuff?  My repertoire also included Spam and Vienna sausages.  Does anyone even know exactly what those things are?  Doesn’t it violate some law of nature for a sausage to be able to spread?  And people wonder why I spent several years in adulthood as a vegetarian.
  • Bible.  What an amazing thing for us to have: a book written just for us by God Himself.  In this country we grow up knowing that the Bible exists, and so we take it for granted, most of us rarely if ever even reading it.  But think about it.  I mean really think about it.  The God who is truly God and can do anything and made everything that exists including us has given us about a thousand pages of His thoughts.  He’s actually given us a big ol’ book to communicate with us!  What an incredible thing for us to have.  It’s really a pity to think of all the years I wasted ignoring the Bible and not believing it.  What a shame for so many people today to have access to God’s thoughts and not even believe it!  What unbelievable riches we have in the Scriptures.  What a timeless, valuable treasure, this ancient volume!
  • Books.  I can totally relate to the little four-year-old girl I recently heard declare: “I love books!”  Books rock.  Books contain endless possibilities.  It’s cool how you can take the 26 letters of our alphabet and combine them in unique ways to tell an infinite number of stories and share a limitless amount of ideas and knowledge.  It’s especially cool when you realize that–let’s be honest–some letters like “c” and “q” really aren’t necessary.  But in the interest of fairness they’ll still get their own moment in the Random Thoughts in Alphabetical Order spotlight.
  • Bolivia & Bangladesh.  Though they’re nowhere near each other and we’ve never been to either one, Carolyn and I pray for these countries and hold them dear to our hearts.  For over a decade, through Compassion International, Carolyn has sponsored a girl named Eliana in Bolivia.  Eliana has a baby sister named after Carolyn!  I’ve sponsored a little boy named Sujan in Bangladesh for a couple years now.  (In case you’re wondering, Bolivia is in South America and Bangladesh is in Asia, near India.)
  • Baseball.  Our voracious consumerism has ruined a lot of great things in this country, and I’m afraid the great game is among them.  But it’s still the great game.
Published in: on February 27, 2009 at 5:49 am  Comments (2)  

Random Thoughts in Alphabetical Order: The Letter A

Recently I heard a comedian sharing some random thoughts in alphabetical order.  What a clever idea for a comedian–it eliminates the need for those forced, awkward transitions!  It’s also a great idea for the random world of blogging.  So I thought I’d set out on a journey to share some random thoughts in alphabetical order.  It will take however long it takes.  Today we begin, of course, with the letter A.

  • A is for apples.  They say an apple a day keeps the doctor away.  I can’t think of anything more untrue than this.  Since Carolyn has been pregnant, she’s eaten at least one apple every day, and during this same span of time she’s been to the doctor more frequently than ever in her life.
  • A is for ADD.  I’m about as un-ADD as you can get, but I’ve discovered a new phenomenon: PADD (Preaching Attention Deficit Disorder).  For some reason when I’m preaching I often struggle to filter out stupid or irrelevant thoughts.  Sometimes they pop into my mind and go right out my mouth before I can ascertain their appropriateness.
  • A is for age.  Right now I’m the same age that Jesus was when He was crucified.  But today I was feeling much, much older when I was outside on the playground with three- and four-year-olds and I got totally winded before they did.  When Troy Aikman was my age, he retired from a Hall of Fame career as an NFL quarterback.  In baseball, Red Sox second baseman Bobby Doerr retired from his Hall of Fame career at the age of 33.
  • A is for appetite.  And call it a sympathy symptom or whatever you want, but it has been insatiable the past 25 weeks.
  • A is for Anabaptist.  And I’m glad to be one.  If you want to learn more about who Anabaptists are, check out the Third Way Cafe.
Published in: on February 24, 2009 at 5:24 am  Comments (2)  

O.P.P.O.

This morning I was tied with another guy for the distinction of being the first customer of the day at the Ocean Pines post office.  I thought it was nice to start the day off with such a special honor.

Published in: on February 12, 2009 at 10:28 am  Comments (2)  

Not What It Appears

Now this is funny.  You just gotta read it.  Make sure you look at the picture before reading the article.

Thanks to my friend Ty for sending this my way!

Published in: on January 29, 2009 at 1:25 pm  Comments (3)  

8

That’s the wind chill factor right now.  Imagine if it wasn’t sunny.

Published in: on January 16, 2009 at 11:37 am  Comments (2)  

Further Evidence That Truth Is Stranger Than Fiction

Here’s the proof: http://sports.espn.go.com/nfl/playoffs2008/news/story?id=3832512

Published in: on January 15, 2009 at 5:06 am  Leave a Comment