Thursday, January 19, 2017

47 degrees

Looks like the lake temperature isn't getting any lower this winter.  We have been keeping the swim distance at 1,600 yards, which is just under 1.5 kilometers.  It is nice to have some companionship this year to help our small group swim regularly.

Saturday, January 14, 2017

I Have A Dream!

"I have a dream that my four little children will one day live in a nation where they will not be judged by the color of their skin but by the content of their character." - MLK speech

We can certainly thank Identity Politics that MLK's dream is dead:  Judging based on character rather than group identity is increasingly dangerous to ones position in society.  The irony being that those who killed the dream will celebrate MLK's life along with this speech this weekend as if they represent his legacy.

Saturday, January 07, 2017

The Russians did it! - Read the report for yourself.

A link is here.  The primary finding is that the Russian government's RT news network put out propaganda that was directed by the Russian government towards furthering its interests.  What is the world coming to?

Friday, January 06, 2017

The Russians did it!

My guess is that Wikileaks will let us know a few weeks later which Democratic campaign staffer authored the "Intel Report".

Saturday, December 31, 2016


Not sure I am ready for it.  A big chunk of America is still hysterical over the election.  They will not rest until Trump's head is brought to them on a platter.  Then there are all those poor souls who have no way to get to heaven unless they go out with a bang and bring some infidels with them.  2016 saw the War on Cops being inaugurated as a distraction from the total failure of the Christian Social Justice movement.  In parallel is the effort to disarm everyone except the criminals, and especially the gangs who deal freely in contraband and are the primary reason for the gun deaths.

On the other hand, I don't need to worry about the Black Death or some Viking raid.  No new alien spaceships have been reported from our solar system scans.  All is calm.

My final thought is from Jesus:

"Therefore do not be anxious about tomorrow, for tomorrow will be anxious for itself.  Sufficient for the day is its own trouble." - Matthew 6:34

Happy New Year!

Friday, December 30, 2016

The Cost of Discipleship - Bonhoeffer

This is a classic now of a German Christian theologian who organized resistance against the National Socialists.  He was arrested in 1943, and eventually executed a few days before his camp was liberated in 1945.  Many of his works were smuggled out of prison.  Before the war he had spent some time at a neo-pagan seminary in New York, Union Seminary.  There is a brief biography by someone else at the beginning of this work which includes this gem:

"Both modern liberal theology and secular totalitarianism hold pretty much in common that the message of the Bible has to be adapted, more or less, to the requirements of a secular world.  No wonder, therefore, that the process of debasing Christianity as inaugurated by liberal theology led, in the long run, to a complete perversion and falsification of the essence of Christian teaching by National Socialism."

Today, this same liberal theology is America's and Europe's established religion, more or less.  The irony being that the theologians of this state religion are constantly finding National Socialists behind every challenge to their authority.  Those who currently call themselves National Socialists are just as confused since they still embrace the state religion, but are somehow opposed to its consequences.  This should be a good read.

Tuesday, December 27, 2016

Book Burnings. California Style.

The story is here.  This reminds me of a collection of the writings of the early church fathers that was at my local government library.  I made good use of it for some time, but then it disappeared from the shelf.  All 30 some volumes.   But not to gripe too much, time moves on and what was formerly deemed useful is no longer the case, with usage statistics to back this choice.  Or at least my optimistic imagination will cause me to think so.  The sinister side might consider that the University of California was simply anti- science and engineer, while my local library was anti-Christianity.  Nah.

Monday, December 26, 2016

The Stanford Dish

Enjoying a stroll in the hills on a cool, sunny day.

Sunday, December 25, 2016

Merry Christmas!

There is nothing more to this post.  Just waiting to see if it gets flagged as "fake news".

Tuesday, December 20, 2016

"Mug Him Again!"

A link to this quote is here.  It was of a judge who had allegedly been mugged, and bravely announced "this mugging will not influence any of my decisions from the bench", which caused a heckler to shout, "Mug him again!".  Clearly one mugging was insufficient for the judge to imbibe the serious of crime, or else he had not really been seriously mugged.

But then what happened on a small scale in New York is now happening on a much larger scale in Europe.  The victim is no longer the stubbornly clueless intellectualoid whose ideology blinds him to all data, but instead it is the random Europeans who find themselves the target of terrorism.  What I won't do is shout "Terrorize them again!", even though the intellectualoids remain adamant that they will not let any of these events influence their opinion on religion.  May God save Europe from its intellectuals and leaders.

Saturday, December 17, 2016

Adjusting Schedules

This morning there was frost on my car that cost me another 5 minutes getting started on the drive to the lake to meet my swimming partner.  There is nothing worse than a partner showing up a few seconds late for an open water swim, but thankfully I had already left that much leeway for problems.  Another 5 minutes will now need to be allocated.

Wednesday, December 14, 2016

Indonesia Politics

This is a sad saga in Jakarta.  It could certainly use a lot more coverage in the West where people remain totally clueless about "Islam".

Saturday, December 10, 2016

Awkward Situations

Pushing the envelope and boldly going where you have never gone before are some of my ideals.  A bit like The North Face's motto of "never stop exploring".  So today I was pushed to do something new that I had never done before.  Usually there is an adrenaline rush in such situations, but not so this time.  Maybe old age is causing me to take these things in stride.  Others might insist that I had been too cowardly and delayed for far too long.  Things that we fear that are far off, however, somehow creep up on us and we must deal with them whether we like it or not.  Procrastination reaches a final limit.  So I finally took the plunge.  I went shopping for some clothes for my grandson with my wife.  We now have a few new things to give him at Christmas.

Tuesday, December 06, 2016

50F = 10C

The water temperature in the lake is just now getting good.  For the last two years I did the mid-week swims alone in December, but this year I have three other partners who sometimes show up besides the cormorants and coots.  This morning was a thick fog so we had to swim within 25 meters of the shore to keep from getting disoriented.  The air temperature was 38F, so things are still fairly warm.  Happiness is a swim in a winter lake!

Saturday, December 03, 2016

Tuesday, November 29, 2016

California votes to Regulate Cow, um, Emissions.

The link is here.  I mainly wonder what the position of the Libertarians is on this.  Should human flatulence be regulated by law?  And how about cows?  Presumably the legalizing of marijuana has freed up regulators so that they can make sure cows behave.

Monday, November 28, 2016

Sunday, November 27, 2016

Mission Peak in the Rain

Saturday was a rainy mud stomp up Mission Peak.  This photo was from the 1900 foot elevation level looking at the 2500 foot summit.  The wind was blowing hard so that the rain was stinging my face, which left me doubtful about reaching the top.  The winds get stronger as you get higher and sometime it is impossible to stand on the summit.  Much of the rest of the climb was on the down-wind side of the peak, so I continued on while a cloud blew in and made it all foggy.  Reaching the top, the wind died down, but there wasn't much of a view while standing in the fog with the rain.  Beautiful.  There was one minor fall on the way down going through the mud, but I was expecting it so no problem.

It cleared a bit on the way down, so here is a view of the hangars at Moffett Field and NASA Ames Research Center which are across the southern portion of the San Francisco Bay from where I live.  The levies are part of a system of salt evaporator ponds that have been constructed around the bay. The rain picked up again towards the end, which help get the mud off of me and made for a perfect ending.

Saturday, November 26, 2016

How to park a boat?

This is the other side of the little strip of land that protects Bodega Bay from the waves.

Thursday, November 24, 2016

Remembering The Birds

It happened in Bodega Bay back in 1962, so we had to drop in and see the place.  It was 1963 when the documentary was released to the public by Alfred Hitchcock.  The challenge for those of us who have lived a long time in the San Francisco Bay Area is to find new areas of exploration.  The solution this time was to show my wife the movie and then follow the countless others on a pilgrimage to Bodega Bay.

Wednesday, November 23, 2016

Point Reyes National Seashore

Trying to find a quiet place to hang out for Thanksgiving.  Usually I head up to Tahoe, but the snow has started and the hotels are short on rooms, thus, my wife and I have headed north up the coast instead.  Point Reyes National Seashore has a lot of little places to explore, but we usually just rush through and hit the highlights.  This time I want to spend some more time to hike different kinds of trails.  Today we did the climb up Mount Wittenberg, although somehow the name, Mount Wittenberg, seems redundant.

Wednesday, November 16, 2016

Something in the Water

It is good to be back in my lake.  One of my swim partners announced that her next goal is swimming the 22.5 miles of Loch Ness, which is a challenge since the max water temperature is about 54 degrees.  I don't mind 54 degrees for an hour or so, but 10 hours is a different matter.  Wondering how Nessie will react to a swimmer.  Meanwhile, the winter die back of plant life is going in the nearby lake which causes the remains to float to the surface for a time.  I have an allergic skin reaction when this rubs against me, so I have been using sunblock to minimize this, even though there is no sun.  This time I switched to Desitin, which is just a thicker version of Zinc-Oxide than the sunblock has.  The other side of the equation is that the temperature in the water will drop to winter levels in about a month and a half, so I must swim regularly to acclimate.

Monday, November 14, 2016

Election Ramblings

Schadenfreude.  'nuff said.

Sunday, November 06, 2016

Food Poisoning

This feels like some sort of Ursula moment.  The poisoning probably happened near the end of my Singapore stay and kicked in just before and during my 14.5 hour flight home.  Writing this two days later, I have been dizzy, dealing with diarrhea, and alternating between chills and sweating.  It is good to be home.

Friday, November 04, 2016

Polar Bears and Habitats

The boarding passes for the return trip have been set, and I am looking forward to getting back into the Northern California lake as the winter temperature sets in.  The second memorial is now done.  Less than 24-hours and we will say good-bye to Singapore and a beloved brother.