Sunday, May 31, 2009


Someone has said that a camel is a horse designed by government bureaucrats. With the government telling auto makers what kind of cars they must make ("Und, you vil LIKE it!"), you ain't seen nothing yet.



We have a squirrel in our church. Most congregations have mice. WE have a squirrel. I made plans to trap it or at least find out where the lil critter is getting in and stop up the hole. However, somebody suggested that we open the doors to "Rocky" and pray for Revival.

Friday, May 29, 2009


Thanks a lot, you sappy give-peace-a-chance-niks.


It has always been the prerogative of children and half-wits to point out that the emperor has no clothes. But the half-wit remains a half-wit, and the emperor remains an emperor.

- Neil Gaiman

I think this explains my whole problem with society in general. I get so frustrated with all the idiots fawning over the emperor's parade and wardrobe. Here all the time I am the half-wit. That's a humbling thought but, like Don Quixote, I shall continue my pointless battle against windmills and empty fashion statements.


I did a Clergy ride with the Los Angeles County Sheriff's Department last night. The watch started out normally; paperwork, stupid domestic disturbance call, stop for a bottle of water (it's already hot here in the high desert). Then the fun started.

We got a call for a wildfire burning in the west valley. Turns out it was within a mile of the homes of several deputies on the watch and mine as well. Half the units raced westward, augmented with another half-dozen from Palmdale station. The fire was burning a northeast path, angling toward a newer neighborhood and the state prison, but away from greater Quartz Hill.

When we arrived on scene we began blocking intersections and expanding the cordon. There were dozens of lookie-loos parked within yards of the flames. Everyone had to be moved back a mile from the fire. After the cordon was set, my deputy was sent to check on the only house in direct path of the fire. We began driving down 70th West from K to J, following a firetruck. The flames were angling closer to 70th as we drove. Suddenly the firetruck slammed to a halt and the firemen jumped into action dragging hoses from both sides of the truck, blocking our path. The firemen began hosing the flames that were now licking the shoulder of 70th. We were completely enveloped in smoke. My deputy decided to turn around and suddenly it was reminiscent of "The Charge of the Light Brigade." Flames to the left, flames to the right... etc, etc. We looked at each other and he said, "I'm gonna floor it, and head back to K." Okay by me.

Later evidence showed no scorch marks on the car, but I'm surprised. We raced into black smoke, blinded like it was heavy tulle fog. It seemed to stretch on and on. Finally the black smoke lightened to gray before reaching acceptable backyard-BBQ levels. Then we were through. On the other side we had to stop--nearly had to arrest--a frantic woman who wanted to go to the home we had been headed to, to check on dogs and cats. We had to watch her for hours until it was safe. (final score; dogs & cats 1, fire 0)

We spent the next several hours at the County fire battalion command post. My deputy relayed fire chief requests for assistance to the sheriff's command post. After the fire we sat for hours on reflash-watch, still blocking streets and making sure the fire did not rekindle. The car smelt of smoke for the rest of the watch and I'm sure the next deputy to drive it would have something to say about the stench as well.

The best part of the whole night was receiving a query over the unit's computer monitor: "R U OK?" I quoted a line from Luke Skywalker and my deputy typed the response: "We got a little cooked, but we're ok."

Monday, May 25, 2009


I talked to a Navy Vet today. He served as a firecontrol technician in WWII. Remember those who paid the ultimate price for our freedom.


Friday, May 22, 2009


Okay, Sorry I haven't posted for most of a month. Now that the Antelope Valley Christian Writers' Conference is over I have a life again. I am gaa gaa over the new television series, CASTLE. The show first aired in March and had only ten episodes in the first season.

Richard Castle is a Mystery novelist living in New York City. The first episode featured a series of gruesome murders straight out of several Castle Novels. The homicide detective investigating the murders, Lieutenant Kate Beckett, just happens to be a closet Castle fan: she would never reveal this to Castle's face. The police bring Castle in as an adviser, thus beginning a long, conflicted relationship.

You see, Rick Castle has just killed off the main character, Derek Storm, of seven best-selling novels. Castle was sick of writing a character that had become stale and predictable. To ensure there would be no "Hollywood-style resurrection" of Storm, Castle killed him off with a particularly bloody and permanent large caliber gunshot to the head.

Oops, now Castle has writers block. Big time. But lo-and-behold, his association with Lt Beckett has given him inspiration. She has become his muse. He wants to hang out with the homicide squad for further stimulus.

Hang out with the homicide squad? You've got to be kidding. The cops would never put up with an amateur dogging their footsteps. O contraire', Castle has a lot of fans, including superior court judges, the Mayor AND the chief of police. With his signature on a certificate absolving the city of responsibility he is assigned as a civilian adviser and the chase is on.

The series is semi-serious, not heavy-handed like all the current CSI shows. Castle himself is admittedly vain, shallow and witty. He makes a superb foil to the serious, driven, Beckett.

The added draw for me is that I am a writer AND I've been volunteering with The LA Sheriff's Department as a clergyman. I ride in the cars with the deputies and sometimes help out with my amazing counseling abilities, or at least an extra flashlight. All I need now is a ballistic vest with an embroidered patch proclaiming WRITER on it.