Oftenly Pronoun… and I mean frequently!

I was talking with a random guy on the street, somewhere in Asia. English was clearly his second language, though my Mandarin clearly had no comparison to his English. He didn't speak Mandarin, though. Things got interesting when he used the word "oftenly".

"I skate oftenly," he said.


Technically, oftenly is not usually a word, but technically it is, but technically it's the wrong word. The word he meant to use was "frequently". If he wanted to say that he skated from time to time, specifically times that are so frequent that they "occur oftenly" (proper usage because the verb occur is about time), it would have been proper to say, "I skate often."

What's the difference and who cares, anyway!?

English speakers love to argue about grammatical distinctions that clearly provide no further clarity—and may even be right—or even wrong and right differently—and to make such arguments about these clearly unclear differences about right and wrong usage differently, even though they have nothing to do with the difference between right and wrong. And, I still have no idea why.

I even asked my friend whether in his country they liked to argue about nothing as much as English speakers did. Absolutely not! It was almost as comical for him to observe me deliberating with myself about the difference between "often" and "oftenly" as it is for a Brit to watch Monte Python banter about British nothingness—notwithstanding that it is most entertaining to watch the Brit be entertained by the bantering banterer, but I digress.

How should we ever know that we ought use the -ly suffixed adverb "frequently" and the non-suffixed "often" interchangeably in the same sentence? It all comes down to English style guide preferences.

In typical, classroom, American English, words like "tomorrow" and "yesterday" are considered adverbs. This may seem strange—and I do think it is strange indeed. Usually, adverbs describe manner or the way in which a verb is acted out.

Consider "eating". "I eat quickly." This makes sense with the adverb "quickly" as the eating is done in a quick manner. But, if I will eat "tomorrow", is the manner in which I will eat described with any more clarity? Does the word "tomorrow" really behave like an adverb?

As with "tomorrow", even if I eat multiple times everyday, "often" just doesn't seem to describe the manner of eating as much it describes the days and times when I eat; but "frequenly" does describe some of the manner. And, that brings me to Cambridge.

Cambridge has a different take than Amercia's 20th century classroom; "yesterday" and "tomorrow" are not adverbs—they are pronouns.

From the English style viewpoint of Cambridge, words like "tomorrow" don't tell one ounce about the manner and speed with which a verb is acted out. Rather, "tomorrow" represents a day as much as "me" represents myself, Jesse Steele, the writer of this ridiculously multi-topicked article with a grammatically incorrect title.

Now, I must add my own two cents about understanding grammar. By "tomorrow" being a pronoun, saying, "I will eat tomorrow," doesn't mean that I plan to eat the actual day of Thursday should I happen to be speaking on a Wednesday. In this "case", the pronoun "tomorrow" would have the "Locative Case" usage of "place in time", but that is a discussion—and an argument in favor—of grammatical noun case applicability to English. And, though I don't want to keep digressing, if using the Cambridge style, it does help to clarify the usage of "tomorrow" by identifying its functional "noun case" and while classifying it as a "modifier noun". If that doesn't make sense, that's okay, it's only two cents.

Where was I?—tomorrow!

If we view "tomorrow" and "yesterday" and words of the like as pronouns that represent days, then we would easily know that "often" is also a pronoun for time—whether time of day or any given day or month, year, et cetera. And, we already know that pronouns do not receive the adverbial suffix, -ly. "Often" should be considered a pronoun, just as "tomorrow", "today", "yesterday", and "everyday" for that matter.

Now I'm wondering, with the Cambridge style, if I were to describe an activity whose manner is best described as done in a "tomorrow" -like manner, would I say that I, "do it tomorrowly."? I think the best answer would be, if you can't save an adverb's life, it's more merciful to kill it quickly. After all, in any well-described writing, adverbs would be a redundancy, which is another argument in favor of Cambridge—"tomorrow" isn't an adverb, so there's nothing wrong with using it. But, I digress yet again.

In conclusion, we understand that the Cambridge style for English usage helps us to clear up this "often" problem. Proper usage is, "I skate frequently and often," because "frequently" is an adverb while "often", like "tomorrow", is a pronoun.

Needless to say, my friend was quite amused at the remarkable time English speakers have with which to dedicate concern about use of language. But, it is likely that he will "frequently and often" use the word "often" properly and correctly in the future. Thank you Cambridge.

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Bye Bye, Bogo

Sometimes in Asia, dogs have the run of the town. They don't really have dog catchers like in the West. Many consider it cruel to neuter pets. I mean, lots of homeless cats and dogs, no animal control to catch them, let them roam the streets and starve, get hit, or get attacked by other stray animals—so much more "humane" than neutering pets, right?

That's the world in which Bogo and I met. I named him "Bogo" for this article because, frankly, he didn't have a name. "Bo" is a manly name for "love" and "go" sounds like the Mandarin word for "dog". The name sounds right for an Asian pet. So, this is a story about Bogo, the black mutt who lived on the streets in Asia.

I first noticed him at local convenience shops. He was young and, for whatever reason, never got acquainted with the other dogs. He had no pack. Most street dogs have at least one dog friend, usually a pack of three or even twenty. Sometimes they roam the streets at night, dogs of every breed and size. It's almost like a dog-lover's movie.

Bogo never ran with any of those packs. He was always alone, yet somehow happy.

He was skinny. His ribs were pronounced. He was timid, yet not sorry for existing. When I saw him sleeping on the floor of the convenience shop, I had seen him once before, perhaps. But, that was the first time that we really got acquainted.

In Asia, dogs run in and out of convenience shops all the time. Don't get me started on health code. A dog in a convenience shop is cleaner than most outdoor food vendors. Besides, the germs strengthen the immune system. I never heard of anyone getting sick from a dog like Bogo. But, this was the first time I ever saw a dog sleeping inside a convenience store.

Maybe there just wasn't a safe place for him in the streets. The other packs probably chased him away. Or, maybe he was smart and liked the air conditioner for sleeping during the tropical summer. Maybe the other dogs didn't like him because he was the only canine with a luxury dog's taste for air conditioning.

Bogo seemed to gel well with humans.

After about six months, some things began to change with Bogo. I wouldn't only see him on the street at a distance anymore. He began to get friendly. In fact one time, he let me pet him! That's not normal for a dog who didn't grow up in a home.

He didn't have the best etiquette. He's jump up on me. If I told him to get down, he thought I was either trying to play or hurt him. He was always wild at heart, even though he preferred the company of humans. Bogo was a "spicy-sweet", just as the Taiwanese like their sauce.

Not long after he nosed me and let me pet him, Bogo started following me around. One night, I was at a BBQ with the neighbors when Bogo crashed the party. He was enamored by the fact that everyone was eating, but he rejected the food we gave him!

I finally tossed him a piece of toast. He picked it up, tried to bite it, then dropped it, uninterested. "You have to teach the dog by example," I said to one of the party guests. I scooped up the toast Bogo had dropped in the road, took a big bite out of it, chomped it down, then threw the rest back at Bogo. Bogo stared at me in awe, then picked it up, and ate the thing whole! The Asian party guests were in shock. You mean that a dog can understand humans?

That's the world in which Bogo and I met.

Of course a dog can understand humans. But, Bogo loved humans. So, he started to play bite with me. That sent the party guests on a whole new learning curve about dogs. They couldn't believe the dog was "biting" me, yet I wasn't bleeding.

Actually, Bogo did break the skin just a little on the back of my hand. But, it wasn't anything big. My hands smelled like dog for two days after that. He'd play too rough. When I smacked him for play biting too hard, he snapped back as if he didn't understand why I had just gently smacked his face. Bogo was always wild at heart, a "spicy-sweet" who loved humans.

A few days later, I had to call the police to report a hit-and-run in the parking lot. I had the plate number, hehehe. When the police showed up, so did Bogo the friendly dog. "New chew friend!" he must have thought to himself as he started play biting one of the young officer's hands. The police were quite entertained by Bogo, but not as much as Bogo was enthralled by them. I mean, think of it—more humans who love him.

In the days that followed, Bogo became more and more friendly in the neighborhood. He'd walk right in and out of the local convenience shops, almost as if he was exercising his status to use the automatic door like the "rest" of the humans. Everyone got acquainted with him. He was the friendly local dog.

I'd see Bogo 100 meters down the street and call to him. He'd come bounding to chase me on my motorcycle, all the way home. Quick play bite, a few words of wisdom that he probably couldn't understand beyond, "He's talking to me!" then I'd step inside and close the front door. The last time I remember him doing that, he smiled at me ear to ear and didn't even try to play bite. It was almost as if he just wanted to say, "I get it. You make sense to me. We can play, but I don't have to. I get it. Thank you. I'm so happy that you helped me get it."

I couldn't have adopted him because he was wild at heart. He wouldn't be happy penned up in a small, Asian house. The first time he went inside, he might have gotten scared and then, bye bye, Bogo!

It was almost prophetic, like the foreshadowing of a novel. At least two daily devotionals from different books were about the death of a loved one. It was too depressing for me. Those devotionals had a positive and encouraging tone—they'll be okay, God is near to us in such times, do not despair... But, I still put down those articles while reading because I just didn't want to think about death. What relevance did it have to that particular week, anyway? Why was I getting the "death is natural, don't be sad" message from so many directions?

Then, it happened. I was walking to a local convenience shop and I saw several neighbors out on the street. A dog had been hit in the road. The body was gone by the time I arrived on the scene. It was a small black dog. It made a big, bloody mess. One of the local shop owners had purchased several liters of bottled drinking water to wash the blood out of the street. It left a stain that is still there today.

At first, I wasn't sure if it was Bogo or not. But, he didn't show up the next day or the next after that. Weeks went by and no Bogo. Bogo went missing after a dog died having his description. I know how put two and two together.

I don't get my teaching of the afterlife from myself nor do I get it from other people who get it from themselves. I get my teaching of the afterlife from the Bible. And, I've seen quite good Bible-based evidence that pets might be in Heaven. Animals have emotions which are intangible, a "spirit"; but they are not sentient, so they have no soul. Just as our life lessons and friendships endure, the spirits of animals we love and train will, in all likelihood, see us again.

I'm not so sure that all dogs go to Heaven, only the dogs with big hearts, who loved because they were loved.

Bogo was a homeless dog, but he wasn't friendless and he isn't homeless anymore.

Why did all that happen? Why did a large puppy—Bogo was no more than a year old—suddenly drop in, dog-friendless, sleeping on our floors, befriending everyone, then get run over on a street where dogs never even get bumped? I miss Bogo annoying me every time I arrive at my front door. Why did all that happen?

Did our community not love enough? Did we need a love to lose so we might love each other a little more?

I can't believe we did something wrong to not prevent Bogo's death, especially with all those "don't despair when loved ones die" messages I kept getting the days before Bogo departed. A dog catcher isn't the answer since we never would have known Bogo. I can't blame the driver since Bogo is jet black and so is the pavement. Dogs sleep in the road all the time in that neighborhood and never, ever get hit, making this even more unusual.

I suppose I could blame the other dogs for making him sleep in the road instead of letting him sleep with them, but had he not been excommunicated from "Dogianity" I might have never gotten to know him. None of us would.

This world was unworthy of a dog like Bogo. There was no place for him. Dogs rejected him. He wouldn't be happy in a home. The streets are dangerous for a dog captivated by every human he sees. It just wouldn't work.

For a few days, the other dogs bugged out. No strays wanted to get close to where Bogo got plowed over. I thought they had moved, but you know how territorial dogs are. After a week, the packs were back. But, they were a little quieter. In fact, since Bogo left, everything has seemed more peaceful. Maybe his spirit really does live on.

He loved humans more than other dogs. His last day was his happiest. One night, he was hit by a car. He died surrounded by friends whose hearts he touched. Neighbors held vigil in the street, giving him a human farewell, just as many Asian funerals take place in the street.

So, there we have it. Somewhere in Asia, a dog with a big heart, a big family, and no home died. He was posthumously named Bogo.

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Korean Non-Communion

It was at the North-South Korean border. An American military official approached the line, accompanied by one or two South Korean officials. He held a megaphone. Stopping just before the line, he aimed the megaphone over the border and explained that South Korea had found the body of a dead North Korean soldier and wanted information on how to turn it over to North Korea officials. As he spoke North Korean soldiers looked at him through binoculars and scattered about like flies until they finally went inside their building and closed the door.

It is difficult to take it all in. Normally, when you try to talk to someone, they listen, receive your message, and pass the message on. But, the North Korean officials seemed to assume that South Korea had some other intentions, as if the South wasn't saying what the South was saying. That's not to mention that the South had to communicate with a megaphone because no one in the North would receive a simple message.

What was even more startling was how much I kept thinking about communication between different Christian sects and denominations.

In the Church and in America as a whole, communication has a striking similarity. People are suspicious of each other and they don't receive each others' ideas. When a Baptist speaks to a Pentecostal, it is as if each of their friends circle the other with binoculars before silently walking away and closing the door. The only way to talk about even the most basic of cordial concerns is through a megaphone because there is no reception.

By refusing to listen to each other, Americans have adopted dangerous values to a point where North Korean missiles may not be necessary to destroy the country.

But, shouldn't Christians at least act better? Not only should Christians be courteous across their borders, there shouldn't be borders in the Church. It is as if American society follows the example of old-time, denominational, divided "Churchianity".

Unfortunately, the Church keeps the borders they shouldn't while governments don't keep the borders they should. Ironically, removing Church borders and building government borders are equally politically incorrect. Dr. Ben Carson had some words about political correctness.

"...Fix the PC culture in our country, which only listens to one narrative. And if it doesn't fit their philosophy, then they try to ascribe some motive to it... Whenever you are asked a certain question, it has to be answered in a certain way, and if you don't answer it that way, then let's attack. Let's not try to actually understand what a person is saying. Let's just attack, attack, attack. And hopefully, everybody else will look at that and they will realize they're never supposed to say something like that again. That's what the PC culture is." – Dr. Ben Carson

Blame for the nation's division rightly rests at the doorstep of the Church. It's impossible to rule-out that the North-South Korean conflict wasn't influenced by the Church's own division and non-communication. Non-communication is very dangerous. The Church doesn't seem to understand how important the issue of communication has always been. Christians don't even understand what they say to each other, let alone the great dangers that now await them, merely from their refusal to communicate.

So, the Christian and American political scripts are the same: When someone doesn't respond according to the expected narrative, the programmed minions assume that he has some hidden agenda and it is as if they can't hear plain English. continue reading


Why I Smile on Airplanes

"Open the door, mate! Please, just open the door."

Knocks continued as I took my shower at the hostel in Ho Chi Minh City, formerly known as Saigon. It's not every day that your shower gets interrupted by a drunken Britt from Birmingham needing to, well, more kindly than he put it "relieve himself".

I knew who the guy was. We had talked recently and I didn't feel in any danger. In fact, danger hadn't even crossed my mind. I have no problem letting a bro into the bathroom when nature calls. I mean, a man's gotta' do what a man's gotta' do when a man's gotta' do it.

"Well, I need a moment." My body was covered in soap and I wasn't about to trudge soap across the floor.

"Please! Just open the door. I just have to take a [leak]. I'm drunk and I gotta' go!"

"Coming." I wrapped my towel around my waist and opened the door.

"Thank you so much mate. Ahhhh..." He probably relieved himself for a good two minutes, almost falling backwards twice.

Again, I really didn't mind letting him in. He had a delightful Cockney Birmingham accent, after all. In fact, so he claims, that driving cap I have was invented in Birmingham and, in his words, "You got to be a Birmie to wear one of those."

How did it all start?

I had walked into the hostel earlier that night to meet Shelly for the first time. She seemed exhausted, yet calm in a charming sort of way. I asked and she told me some of her journey. She had a semi-crazy trip. I'll spare the details, except to say that I asked, "What's a brilliant girl like you doing partying? You should be up at 5:00 A.M. interviewing shop owners, building a contact book, and making a journal of your discoveries."

"You know, you're right, actually," she said.

I gave her the boilerplate advice, which somehow never seems so obvious: Study what you hate, do what you love. It's not always true, but what a resume builder, eh? "I travel the world because I love people, I speak three languages, but I studied accounting and pre-MBA in college to keep myself well-rounded." Who wouldn't hire someone like that?

"I must introduce you to Heather," I said at last. "Heather is from a country right next to yours and she's quite similar. She's traveling with her friend, Brianna, which I can never pronounce to her liking."

Shelly was from central Europe and had just worked for an airline. She told me a story about a tough customer she once had, how airline employees must always wear a smile, even while laying down the law, even while being threatened.

...Airline employees must always wear a smile.

And, that was Shelly. Even after the rough story of travels she had been through, here she was, all in one piece, calm as a cucumber. In many ways, I envy her.

In walked Heather and Brianna. "There they are," I exclaimed. The three ladies got acquainted on the porch that evening in Saigon while I took to the shower. I had an early flight to catch and wanted to get to sleep early.

So, here I was in the shower—kind of—trying to keep a drunk "Birmie" from falling down while relieving himself. "Oh, thanks so much, mate! I'm so drunk."

"It's alright. I understand." We just have to wear that smile no matter what...

I finished my shower and made my way out to the porch to find our Birmie friend chatting it up with the three ladies on the porch. After a minute or two, his other Birmie friend showed up.

"Oh, please," one of the fellas said. "Just a little more massage."

"But, I already gave you three. You're quite relaxed as it is."

"I still want the full massage."

"But, you can't do everything all at one time."

That's very true.

Time to distract. "Jesse, what was it you said you were working on with your website?"

"It was a list of words. Many non-native speakers have trouble with some English sounds..."

"Get off of my bed! I want to sleep!"

"Don't bother Breeann," I say.

"No, no, no! It's Brianna," she corrected.

Her friend piped in. "Yes, there are some sounds that native English speakers have trouble pronouncing in other languages."


This was going to be an interesting evening. I didn't dare doze off to sleep. The drunk boys probably aren't all that bad, but they wouldn't let the ladies be. Worse things probably happen in many other parts of the world, especially in so-called "civilized nations".

One guy playfully tosses Brianna on the bed. She objects with dignity. Heather tries to talk some sense into the drunk, but more as a distraction gimmick than any genuine hope of producing change.

As the night went on, the girls did a rather fantastic job of entertaining the drunk boys. It wasn't for any agreement or to join in their rough housing. There just wasn't anything else for them to do. So, they sat and listened to them through the night.

It began to rain. It stopped raining. The floor got wet. Then one of the boys threw Shelly's bag on the floor—right into a puddle of water.

"You can't throw people's things," I kindly explained.

"But, I want to throw things," he said.

Now, there's an indication of insecurity. The boys aren't really bad, just immature and insecure. That's quite a contrast to the girls with whom these boys quite clearly didn't stand a chance of rounding first base.

"You can't throw other people's things, though. They can break. Now, Shelly is sad."

Watching those girls deal with misfits was a lesson in life for me. I don't know where Brianna and Heather will go with their lives, but I'm sure it won't be a waste.

Shelly sat next to her wet bag, poking her fingers at her temples. Then, she smiled. She was tired. It was 4:00 A.M. Her only travel bag was wet—along with who knows what else inside. With her luck everything was probably okay. But, that's not the point.

In that moment, Shelly convinced me that she did indeed work for an airline. You have to have the patience of Job to not explode in a situation like that.

Shelly, I don't know where you will go with your life, but I'm sure it will be amazing as long as you keep going and, no matter what, keep smiling.

So, what happened to the boys? I couldn't stay around to find out. I had a plane to catch. That's another story of patience all to itself. I'll just say that the memory of Shelly kept me smiling.

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American Crisis

The United States is in a crisis. It has been in a crisis since the 1990’s. It began with “all teams win” in school sports and “have sex with whomever you want, it won’t affect your family or your life” in sex education and Sunday morning morals. Students were told that college was the way to survive because it led to a “safe, secure job”. It started when institutional education took a turn on a few key principles. Now, people don’t know how to win in sports, they are unhappy in their families and their lives, and they don’t know how to keep or even find a “safe, secure job”.

People like Anne Coulter and myself, who foresaw Trump’s election and went on record, understood the nature of the crisis, which was why we forecasted the election with the confidence we did. We “Trump predictors”, (including Allan Lichtman), maintained our confidence in the face of so many voices telling us otherwise because our principles for understanding the political atmosphere shouted that much louder.  · · · →


Dad’s Wise Walls

My father built my entire house. I still remember being 5 years old, seeing the huge box freshly dozed right out of the side of the hill. I just looked up at this huge wall of dirt, not even knowing that my father had carefully engineered it to protect us from both tornadoes and floods.

He’d talk about the foundation, how the outer cement walls became extra thick and extra deep. He explained reinforced concrete to me many, many times. He never ran one single scenario about why a house needed a foundation. “That’s how you have to build it or you’ll have some kind of problem,” he’d say. “You can’t prevent every problem on earth.” The whole house could get lost in a random sink hole. But, people have been building for thousands of years and we’ve learned a few things. Thanks to my father, I learned something very important as a child: Don’t try to outsmart the Romans when it comes to building things that don’t fall down easily.  · · · →


Moral Gadflies: Why the Bible is True

There are two types of Christians: those who base their Christian beliefs entirely on “only Bible” (AKA Sola Scriptura) and those who base their Christian beliefs, at least partially, on “dogma” (most famously from the Roman Catholic Church, though dogma can come from anyone seeking to inject his own ideas and fashion his own circular worldview).

The ultimate question between Sola Scriptura and dogma is about whether to function effectively with a good quality of life or whether to think comfortably, regardless of quality of life.

The strong argument for Sola Scriptura is one of the best kept secrets on establishment Sunday Morning. God gave the idea behind Sola Scriptura to Joshua. Peter and Paul explained it. The Declaration of Independence refers to the idea as truths that are “self-evident”. Scripture is Scripture because it claims to come from God and the fact that it works proves that it is what it claims to be.  · · · →


Lost in the Phony

I have a friend who’s had a rough life. And, he hasn’t been alive that long. Trouble with marriage, he blames it on drinking… I really can’t be his judge because, frankly, I haven’t had that rough of a life.

I grew up in the Church. My grandmother led Sunday School and taught Bible lessons. I knew who Jesus was and which way to walk with my heart since before I could walk with my legs. What do I know about people who have difficulties?

My friend grew up quite differently. His parents were divorced. Though he had money, his sister gave the kids baths and did the laundry. He didn’t get involved in the Church until well after 12 years old. At that point, he had a lot of pressure.

See, Sunday Morning Segregation Hour is about applying an appealing veneer. People like me, who grew up understanding certain things, get showcased as the “roll model”, with little to no instruction on what actually makes for a good, glad life.  · · · →


Goodness in Work

Look at nature. If you believe that molecules just happened into being without an outside force, you need to look more.

Nature has rules that are as complex as they are consistent. If you pay attention, keep an open mind ’till the day you die, and work regularly to hone some sort of skill, you can “prosper”.

Prospering is different from stealing. Theft is part of the worldview of a “zero sum game”. Prosperity is what happens on an apple tree: The tree has apples without stealing apples from another tree. Not every rich person got rich through prosperity nor does every rich person get rich through theft, but every rich person could have made either choice.

One of the biggest keys to prosperity and success is not whining about problems that aren’t your fault. We have such problems all the time. Carry on without complaint and without distraction. Then, you’ll get stronger, smarter, and you’ll prosper.  · · · →


Zoo Whisperers

Let’s get more “animal whisperers” at zoos. Sea World does it.

Viral animal videos are all about positive relations between animals and humans. The bossy, heavy-fisted, one-way relationships of the Builders’ generation is gone and done. They imprisoned animals and considered it cute. They imprisoned their children, the Baby Boomers, and called it “parenting”. Let’s move past their way of seeing the world. Let’s kindly and openly suggest—not through some stupid, heavy-handed, hare-brained law—let’s suggest that it’s a matter of business smarts and marketable survival—that zoos seriously consider putting “animal whisperers” in with all the animals.

No animal whisperer, no animal. I think it would thrive as a business model for zoos. And, I think the animal cruelty question, as well as the animal danger question, would both be over and done with.

As for Harambe… Darnit! No one wanted that gorilla to die. Everyone should examine his own ways.  · · · →

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Happy Thanksgiving: Truth, History & Ideologies

Happy Thanksgiving: Truth, History & Ideologies

Happy Thanksgiving: Truth, History & Ideologies

No doubt ideologies can easily clash over the holidays. We live with different ideas all year long, then come together. What happens for friendship or conflict is our own choice. Politically-inclined periodicals like to instruct readers on how to persuade family members either left or right. But, rather than the usual “gotcha” or “win arguments” campaign, here are some ways to win friendship and let Thanksgiving have its day. If you want instructions, follow these three steps…

1. Don’t argue:

When old relatives use politically incorrect terms from the past, prove how smart you are: You know what they mean, so you don’t need to correct them or even comment.

When people demonstrate different morals, don’t take the bait. If you think someone a fool, joining in an argument is joining a fool. Be mature. If you must debate, talk about the historical absence of cranberry sauce and the fact that the Pilgrims had neither pumpkin pie nor mashed potatoes since they didn’t have ovens. The Pilgrims at Plymouth actually developed as a fishing society since Massachusetts isn’t as friendly for farming as Jamestown, Virginia.

The early versions of today’s Thanksgiving recipes (pumpkin pie, stuffing, turkey, bread, mashed potatoes, and cranberry sauce) were introduced by writer Sara Josepha Hale (Marry had a Little Lamb) who started a three-decade campaign for the national holiday in 1827. George Washington had declared the first Thanksgiving on Thursday, November 26, 1789. Lincoln made Thanksgiving officially annual during the Civil War, 1863, setting it as the last Thursday in November. In 1939, FDR’s attempt to expand the shopping season by moving Thanksgiving up one week was not welcomed. In 1941 FDR made Thanksgiving the fourth Thursday in November. George H. W. Bush pardoned the first turkey to retire on a farm in 1989.

2. Talk about today’s political context:

Everything is changing. Refuse to get into any political or ideological debates since a. these change ever more dramatically from year to year and b. many recent ideologies have yet to be tested, therefore there is nothing to discuss, either pro or con.

3. Consider the political-ideological context of the first two British settlements:

The story of the Pilgrims simultaneously sides with and violates both right and left of today’s political scripts. The Pilgrims didn’t want the fickle establishment policing their religion. They had tried to live in the Netherlands starting in 1607, but that didn’t work out. Lacking money and concerned about losing their language to the Dutch, they sold stock, joined the London Company, and got permission from the Crown to leave for Hudson, near the already established Jamestown, Virginia. They were not funded by tax dollars, but they were governed by them.

The Speedwell had accompanied them to Amsterdam, but only the larger Mayflower would prove seaworthy to carry them on to the “New World”. After a 66-day voyage of hardship, the Pilgrims arrived, more or less, as beat-down western imperialists equipped with political and religious ideologies rather than a survival plan for the worst. They never made it to Hudson.

Having arrived too far north, they spent the first winter aboard the Mayflower in 1620. All but fifty-three of the 102 Pilgrims died that first winter. The natives, Wampanoag, were also farmers who helped them survive and taught them to plant their own crops the next year. Their secret was to use fish meal as fertilizer so they could grow better corn. This was important. The Pilgrims were not farmers in Britain nor did the Crown send many supply vessels. The Pilgrims’ welfare could not rely on government welfare.

According to the rules of the London Company (approved by the Crown), the Plymouth colony followed a principle called “common course”—the colony had a central grainery, each Pilgrim contributed what he could, then took what he needed. According to Richard Maybury’s “The Great Thanksgiving Hoax,” (1999) “common course” echoed Marxism’s from each according to his ability, to each according to his need. Due to local theft, little made it into the grainery.

John Carver was elected the Plymouth governor in 1621 and died that April. While William Bradford was out scouting for a colony location, the Mayflower was anchored at the tip of Cape Cod off Provincetown Harbor. His wife, still on the Mayflower, fell overboard and drowned. He was later elected governor which he held for subsequent years. In 1623, having starved from lack of corn, Plymouth had its fill of “common course”. Bradford writes:

All this while no supply was heard of, neither knew they when they might expect any. So they began to think how they might raise as much corn as they could, and obtain a better crop than they had done, that they might not still thus languish in misery. At length, after much debate of things, the Governor (with the advise of the chiefest among them) gave way that they should set corn every man for his own particular, and in that regard trust to themselves; in all other things to go in the general way as before. And so assigned to every family a parcel of land, according to the proportion of the number, for that end, only for present use (but made no division for inheritance) and ranged all boys and youth under some family. This had very good success, for it made all hands industrious, so as much more corn was planted than otherwise would have been by any means the Governor or any other could use, and saved him a great deal of trouble, and gave far better content. The women now went willingly into the field, and took their little ones with them to set corn; which before would allege weakness and inability; whom to have compelled would have been thought great tyranny and oppression.

Their first Thanksgiving, in 1621, lasted three days, not celebrated the next year. The Pilgrims were first known as “Old Timers”. Bradford had journaled about them as “saints” and “pilgrimes” from Holland. Daniel Webster called them “Pilgrim Fathers” at the 200 year anniversary of Plymouth (1820) and the term stuck. The Pilgrims were the second English settlement.

The first colony had already started in Jamestown, Virginia, named after King James I and was led by Edward Winfeld and a council of six chosen by the company. The names were sealed until their arrival. They chose Jamestown  as their location on May 13, 1607, while the Pilgrims were first beginning their exploits in Europe. Jamestown was Anglican and privately funded by the Virginia Company. The first wave of 104 men and boys had sailed aboard the Susan Constant, the Godspeed, and the Discovery, departing Dec 6, 1606, according to other sources, Dec 20 that year. Their main conflict was with the Powhatan tribe, but the Spanish were also a concern.

Winter of 1609-1610 was historically known as “Starving Time”; William Strachey tells 80-90% died from disease and starvation. Likely a hurricane had set a supply ship off course, which ran a reef in Bermuda to avoid sinking. It finally arrived May, 1610. Thanks to one of the Bermuda survivors, John Rolfe, who married Pocahontas, Jamestown’s Virginia Company became profitable with a non-native tobacco introduced in 1612.

The first legislative assembly met in 1619 at Jamestown Church. Beyond the governance of Virginia, the Pilgrims established New England and were self-governed by the Mayflower Compact. In 1624, after financial problems, Jamestown’s Virginia Company had their private charter revoked by the British Crown and remained a Royal colony until America’s Revolution.

The Puritain Pilgrims at Plymouth, Massachusetts in New England overcame death and finally thrived through friendship with the Wampanoag Indian farmers, by learning to farm their own food, by using fish as both their main trade and as corn fertilizer, lumbering, building ships, and encouraging women and children to work the fields through ownership of their own crops. The Anglicans at Jamestown, Virginia, near Chesapeake Bay, survived to become worthy of acquisition by the Crown, thanks to a triangle-shaped fort equipped with guns at each corner, Captain Christopher Newport’s ability to establish early peace with the Powhatan Indians through trade, the Powhatan chief’s daughter Pocahontas, then 11, saving John Smith’s life while Newport was away on the high seas to trade and bring more settlers, and by Pocahontas’ husband growing foreign tobacco for sales in England.

So, we have everything to be thankful for. After all, Thanksgiving would never give reason for controversy.

Sources and works consulted:

A Short History of Jamestown & Jamestown and Plymouth: Compare and Contrast (National park Service)

The Pilgrims & First Thanksgiving Meal (The History Channel)

Pilgrims, Squanto, William Bradford and Communism (Independent Sentinal)

Why the Pilgrims Abandoned Communism (Free Republic)

The Jamestown Chronicles Timeline (The Jamestown Chronicles)

Timeline History of Jamestown, Virginia

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Fab Sandwich: Homosexuality Hits Crit Mass

Fab Sandwich: Homosexuality Hits Crit Mass

SCOTUS redefined marriage as an indication of homosexuality hitting the critical mass stage. It is now a fad. “Coming out of the closet” is no longer “brave” and has lost all of its counter-culture flair. Now, it’s the way to “be like everyone else”. The “fashionable homosexual” will never seem more attractive than he does now… never before, never after. Once something becomes too popular, it loses steam.

The number of open homosexuals will increase. That part won’t fade. But the flair, the pizzazz, the rapture and excitement of scandal—these will be lost for those who jumped in the game too late. Some of it will continue to go up, for a while. The momentum is still there, but the steam is gone.

Soon, closet homosexuals, formerly “fat slob phobes”, will join the movement. Then, once homosexuality is the new normal, the fat slobs will take over that as well. Understanding this requires an understanding of history: Men weren’t fat slobs because they were straight; they were fat slobs because that was the lazy thing to do.

Once the party is over, the new fashion will be eligible “metro” bachelors—these are straight men who have the fashion and cultural brilliance of the “Fab Five” image, and who don’t bash homosexuals. That will be the trend in the coming years. It hasn’t started yet, of course. But when it starts, it will last a long time because it will never hit critical mass. Staying in shape and having children is nearly impossible, too impossible for the masses to ever accept. That’s why many are called and few are chosen.

None of that is opinion, it’s an attempt at a prediction. As for my opinion…

I don’t hate homosexuals. I put myself in the metro category. I am rather disgusted with the in-yer-face, lazy fat-old-fathers the Boomers gave us. They were always disgusting, even in their 20’s. They didn’t listen to their parents and they didn’t listen to their children—and they certainly don’t listen to their wives. The homosexual fashion movement is giving those failed fathers a run for their money.

Would I love it if fathers changed and started to listen for the first time? Yeah. I’d also love it if China would focus on cleaning up their own country before annexing others. I’d love it if Russia would stop acting like a fool just because it’s angry that Obama can’t make other countries like him. And I’d love it if Churchianity would drop dead and resurrect Jesus. I’d love a lot of things. But, I don’t intend to intervene. I’m grabbing my popcorn because I know how this story ends: the metros on top, the phobes on bottom, and the fabs in the middle.

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The Battle of Sterling Hill

No weapon formed against me shall prosper“No weapon against me shall prosper.” That’s apparently “undisciplined” in the minds of some. Paintings of naked ladies on WWII fighters and bombers aren’t “undisciplined”. But if you have confidence that weapons won’t stop you, then the US Marines object.

Do the Marines’ brass want weapons to prosper against the US military? If not, then what is going on in the brass against Monifa Sterling?

Ultimately, this problem comes down to two factors, either one being sufficient to legitimize Sterling’s case. Order in the ranks includes a “nation under God”. Respect for the Bible comes atop all of those orders in the ranks. Presidents, Justices, and elected officials are sworn into office with a Bible. As long as “one nation under God” remains in writing and oaths of office use God’s Word, all military commands must respect that Word. It’s a matter of consistent policy. If the Bible and God didn’t have this, the argument would not be as strong.  · · · →

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