It is 5:59 AM on Christmas Eve. I woke up around 4, made the coffee, put away the dishes, fought with my computer and put the NORAD Santa Tracker on the T.V. I say fought with my computer because it is old and now the monitor sometimes does not get signal from the computer. I’ve tried looking for loose connections and just today tried running an HDMI cable instead of DVI but as usual it took a few restarts to get working.
I wanted my computer to be on when my son woke up because just yesterday I showed him how we could not only play Fortnite on a PC but also record it which we cannot do on a Nintendo Switch. He is very excited about this discovery and we even made two videos for his YouTube Channel last night or I think he might not have been able to get to sleep. Fortnite also has a Star Wars promotion going on in game and you can get light sabers as well as “First Order Blasters,” aka Storm Trooper guns. I wanted to make sure my son had his video of a light saber fight before the promotion ended.
He is so excited about being able to make Fortnite videos that he woke up this morning at 5:30 AM right when I was starting my meditation. Sure enough he wanted to go play Fortnite on my computer. He has his own computer but it is old and I think the hardware might have trouble running the game and video capture software not to mention the space limits.
In other news one of the first things I read today is how the magazine Christianity Today is attacking Trump again for his blatant immorality as well as the blind loyalty shown him by Evangelicals. Great for Christianity Today for taking a stand and just saying what is completely obvious. Evangelicals like a lot of Trumps policies and so look past the type of person Trump actually is as well as the other policies that aren’t so Christian. Examples would be putting refugee kids in cages, standing up for white supremacists, cheating on his wife by banging porn stars, greed, corruption and the list goes on and on. He really can do anything and Evangelicals would look past it. It makes absolutely no sense and is hypocrisy the highest degree.
I lost my faith a long time ago but to each his own. Yet I cannot wrap my head around how Evangelicals can support a person like Trump. He is the opposite of everything Jesus was!! Let’s look at Matthew 4:8-10 shall we?
8 Again, the devil took Him up on an exceedingly high mountain, and showed Him all the kingdoms of the world and their glory. 9 And he said to Him, “All these things I will give You if You will fall down and worship me.”
10 Then Jesus said to him, [b]“Away with you, Satan! For it is written, ‘You shall worship the Lord your God, and Him only you shall serve
Now replace the devil with Trump and Jesus with the Evangelicals. Trump offers the Evangelicals a few pieces of legislation they like should they worship him but unlike Jesus who turned the devil away they eagerly agree and start sucking the Trump train d*ck.
I’ve often said how disappointed I am in adults now that I am one. When you’re a kid you think adults know everything and the realization that the majority of ‘adults’ know very little continues to shock me. New lows are surpassed by even lower lows. And this most recent low is that approx 20% of the US population, Evangelicals, have blind loyalty to a man who espouses the opposite of all they believe in? The American Evangelical, truly a country bumpkin hayseed in need of one of their big tent revivals.
Perhaps they should be given some slack. After all their religion is the religion of their parents and their parents before them. They need to be told what to believe and who better to believe than the religion of their parents who got their religion from their parents and so on. The only difference is that Evangelicals today are a product of a great “dumbing down” which made Christianity easier to understand for country people during revivals of the past 200 years. Just throw in a firey preacher, a couple of banjos and easy to understand concepts of good versus bad and there you go, you’ve got the American Evangelical. Evangelicals need someone to follow. They blindly follow Christianity no matter its major faults and perhaps blindly following a man in politics is just a natural fit for them. Can’t think too hard about things, just praise Jesus and Trump!
OK enough. It is the eve of the Christ Mass. I grew up in the Catholic Church and even though I no longer believe I still enjoy remembering the magic of Christmases of my youth and that includes mass. I don’t want to write about Trump and I don’t want to despise the Christians who support Trump. But for the love of God, they aren’t making any sense and are going to have to repent in a big way once the realize their mistake here. What I do want to write about is Christmas!
One of my great memories was Christmas Eve mass when I was an alter boy. Christmas Eve mass, along with Easter is a time when the church is completely packed. It is also special because it takes place at night. The midnight mass went out of fashion when I was around 8 years old because the priests realized nobody wants to be awake at midnight so it was moved to 10:00 PM. I was at the head of the procession along with my classmate Michael M. The church was dark with only the light from candles and a few dim lights illuminating the alter. The music started and we lead the procession up the main isle surrounded by just about all our classmates and everyone we knew in the pews.
From the alter I could see the faces of the entire crowd and I would always look for the pretty girls in my school. Being an alter boy had its perks! Christmas Eve mass, in its darkened splendor, surrounded by classmates, neighbors and girls with snow on the ground and a chill outside, knowing that there would be presents in the morning is one of my most treasured memories of Christmas Eve.
For the past two decades I no longer go to mass but still long to feel that magic from my youth on Christmas Eve. Alcohol has helped in the past but I really dislike the hangover effects on Christmas day so this is the first time for as long as I can remember that I’m not going to drink. Alcohol is the easy way for me to really spark old memories and reminisce. But I’ve learned that the same can be accomplished through mindfulness. In this case I mean just quieting the mind, making the body still and simply remembering. Just like exercise works the muscles, the act of remembering sparks the neurons and sometimes they rediscover long unused pathways to old memories. As I get older memories that were always close at hand have been packed in long forgotten storage bins and I need to make a conscious mental effort to find them again.
Time to get some other things done this morning. I’ll write more later.
It is now 4:55 PM. The family was soon up after I finished my post and it was decided we should have crab for dinner. That meant I’d have to get down to Princeton-by-the-sea so I could get live crab off the boats. Now Christmas Eve is the busiest time of the year there as everyone wants crab so I had to get going. I went to the ATM, got a Peppermint Mocha at Starbucks and then went down. It was very busy but not yet crazy and I was able to go right up to a boat and buy crab.
I came back home and then learned we needed salad and broccoli from Safeway. So I went out again and it was busy but not yet awful so I was pretty much in and out. As I waited in line at the self checkout the difference in generations really struck me. The older folks are still digging around in change purses while the younger people are tapping their phones to pay. Times sure have changed.
I came back home laid on the couch and took a nap. I find as I get older that naps are a wonderful thing. Then I got up, turned on the work computer to wrap up a few things and then did a few chores. One of them was backing up my computer files as I have multiple backups and do not trust nor like the cloud. Why would I give my entire digital life over to the hands of one specific company? No thank you. After that I finally got my workout in. I find that a good workout is absolutely necessary not only to keep my body feeling good but also my mind. My mind can easily cross into negative thoughts (I think too much about news) and working out clears it right up. Life is shiny and bright after a good workout.
As for no alcohol that idea has failed. With crab white wine is a must so I’ve opened up a nice blend called Fragrant Snare from Tooth and Nail in Paso Robles. The wife can’t drink much but I told her not to worry, I’ll ensure it doesn’t go to waste.
We’re cooking the crab now and I’ve got a moment to write. Soon it will be time for bed and then Santa comes! Now it is time to enjoy my wine and do a bit of ‘mindfulness’ which is really just be present and appreciate the moment.