January 18, 2021

Saturday Ramblings 7.17.10

Ok, first off: Bucky is the smart-aleck cat. Satchel is the intelligent but not world-wise dog. And Rob is their loving but frequently frustrated owner. Get Fuzzy–the best writing in comic strips today. Some of you will say, “I don’t get it.” Read it again. Still don’t get it? Sigh…It’s time for Saturday Ramblings.

This week marks the 85th anniversary of the “Scopes Monkey Trial” in Dayton, Tennessee. There are many places to read about this online, but you can also check out the book Chaplain Mike recently reviewed and recommended. You can get the movie Inherit the Wind. Or you can just try to understand what Bucky is talking about with Rob.

We have brothers and sisters in North Korea who are being tortured and killed for sharing the Gospel. Please read that again, ok? Killed for sharing the Gospel. And get this: Those who escape from North Korea and come face-to-face with the Gospel are then going back, voluntarily, to North Korea so they can share this good news with their family and friends. Are we doing as we are instructed in Hebrews: Praying for them as if we were in chains as well?

We recently talked about the changes at Claremont University, a Methodist school in California. Seems their president now thinks is it wrong to evangelize those of other faiths. Your thoughts?

Meanwhile, the University of Illinois fired an adjunct professor for teaching what Catholics believe about homosexuality. What was he hired to do? Teach Catholic beliefs. So he was fired for doing what he was hired to do? No wonder the football Illini can’t buy a win in the Big Ten…(We all know God’s team plays in Norman, Oklahoma anyway…)

“Pope Benedict XVI is creating a new Vatican office to fight secularization and ‘re-evangelize’ the West.” So says this AP article. The thing that stands out to me most of all is that the Pope takes a summer vacation! Where do you think he goes? Does he take some good beach reading with him? (In all seriousness, Pope Benedict XVI is one of the finest theologians of our day, and is under incredible pressure brought about because of a few problems priests. We all–ALL–need to be praying for him. I hope he has a great vacation. And I hope he has a copy of Mere Churchianity: Finding Your Way Back to Jesus-Shaped Spirituality to read while he is relaxing…)

For those of you who are tired of having to actually think when someone asks you a question about God, good news: There’s a app for that. Yep, as long as you carry your smart phone with you at all times, you will never be without an answer to someone who asks you to explain why you believe in God. Just be sure to keep that phone charged at all times.

With all the great thinking that went into designing those apps so we don’t have to think, you might question this story saying we are losing our creative prowess. Or maybe you would say you are surprised there is any creativity left in our generation. Your thoughts?

Have a spare $29,500? If so, you can have your own 1629 edition of the King James Bible. Fortunately, there is the Buy It Now button so you won’t have to bother bidding against all of the others who want to part with ready cash for this Bible. And shipping is only $250! What are you waiting for?

Birthdays this week include David Brinkley; Fred “Herman Munster” Gwynne; Arlo Guthrie; Bela Fleck; Milton Berle; Bill Cosby; Cheryl Ladd; Patrick Stewart (who is your favorite Star Trek captain?); Linda Ronstadt; Will Ferrell; and your friendly Rambler himself. Yes, today is my 51st birthday. Looking for a last-minute gift  for me? Check out that 1629 Bible to see if it is still available…

This week also brought to an end the World Cup, some athletic event played in South Africa. For your laughing enjoyment, and to help hold you over until the next World Cup is played, uh, sometime, somewhere, here are two last looks at all the fun of 100 minute long games that end 0-0. First of all, this Get Fuzzy strip explains a lot to me.

Finally, what would happen if the World Cup came to Middle Earth? Watch and find out.


  1. Jeff:

    I believe that the traditional summer residence of the Pope is — wait for it —
    Castle Gandolfo, about 30 km from Rome.

    • Castel Gandolfo is also the site of the Vatican Space Programme Observatory:

      “The two telescopes of the Vatican Observatory, which were moved from Rome to Castel Gandolfo in the 1930s, were still used until the 1980s. The headquarters of the Vatican Observatory is still located in Castel Gandolfo. However, its dependent research center, the Vatican Observatory Research Group (VORG), is hosted by Steward Observatory at the University of Arizona, Tucson, USA. The telescopes are located in Mt. Graham, Arizona.”

      According to Zenit, he’ll be resting up before the big trip to Great Britain in September (and, if you can go by the reports, he’ll need to be calm and refreshed because it looks like the English hierarchy couldn’t organise the proverbial in a brewery, what with all the faffing about regarding where the Mass for the beatification of John Henry Cardinal Newman will be held):

      “July and August will be calmer months, with only one main activity announced for each: a pastoral visit to Sulmona, Italy, on July 4 for the 800th anniversary of the birth of Pope St. Celestine V; and on Aug. 15, an 8 a.m. Mass for the solemnity of the Assumption, celebrated at the parish church of St. Thomas of Villanova in Castel Gandolfo.

      On Sept. 5, the Holy Father will made a visit to Carpineto Romano, Italy, for the 200th anniversary of the birth of Pope Leo XIII.”

  2. Correction: gandolfo

  3. Ack!

    I meant to write — Castelgandolfo

  4. It is hard to get by the world cup Gandalf extravaganza…but in all seriousness I think Dr Campbell misses the point of loving your neighbor…if we believe that following Christ is the only way then part of loving people is to share the good news.

  5. Isaac Rehberg (the poster formerly known as Obed) says

    Here in San Antonio, some of the World Cup games were broadcast in 3D at one of our local movie theaters. I saw the Spain/Germany semis and the Spain/Norway finals that way. Now, I’m not really a big fan of 3D in movies (it’s usually an afterthought that just drives prices up). I’m also not a big sports fan. But seeing sports in 3D is freaking awesome! Especially since I was the lone Spain fan among all my friends. 😀

    • Norway?!?

      • Obviously, this was the Alternate Universe World Cup, where Norway made it out of their group instead of the Netherlands.

        This is the same AU where France did not go qualify by beating us via a handball (ah, Thierry, how could you?)


        • Martha: I was so happy to see France booted out early and in such disgrace.. Karma is a you-know-what.

          At least that was some vindication (however cold) for Ireland.

          • expat, there was indeed just the tiniest shred of schadenfreude over here 🙂

            Though I had to laugh at England; knocked out by the Germans. Again. It happens every time, you’d imagine they’d be used to it by now but it always seems to come as a surprise to them.

          • Isaac Rehberg (the poster formerly known as Obed) says

            ROLF I meant Neatherlands. One of those “N” words that I didn’t follow until that last game!

  6. Isaac Rehberg (the poster formerly known as Obed) says

    It is absolutely astounding the way that Pope B16 has been treated in the media. I don’t know if it’s just that he’s not JP2, but they really seem to have groundless hatred for him, and use the priest sex scandals propagandize that hatred. I’m not a “Romish Papist,” but everything I’ve read of his, even stuff written when he was a cardinal, really impresses me.

    So, yeah, I agree that we should be praying for him. I try to remember to pray for him daily. Him and Archbishop Rowan Cantaur. There’s another world religious leader who’s in a really tough spot (though, to be fair, some of ++Rowan’s difficulties are of his own making).

    Speaking of which, anyone follow the Church of England’s synod discussions/votes over bringing women into the episcopacy?

    • David Morri says

      Yes, I followed it pretty closely. Again, I think that the media completely messed up it’s coverage. Andrew Brown (who is usually careful) went so far as to suggest that the CofE calvinists opposed to women’s ordination on biblical grounds (vs. the traditional Anglo-Catholics who are opposed because of ecclesiology) were misogynistic. Oh dear…

      I wish they had put in strong protections for those concerned about it, but it’s not done yet.

    • It’s the whole Panzerkardinal/God’s Rottweiller image that got tagged onto him because of the Congregation of the Doctrine for the Faith.

      Let’s face it: when you’re the boss of the CDF, which is the Congregation formerly known as the Holy Office, also known as the INQUISITION!!!! (cue ominous Latin chanting by sinister hooded figures in shadowy churches), then the media are never going to be all fluffy feelgood kittens and puppies reportage.

      Add to that the whole German in Hitler Youth past (never mind that he was a teenager at the time and it was compulsory for all German youth) and, well… there you go.

      Now, if he’d been reliably liberal like his old friend Hans Kung, or like Cardinal Daneels in Belgium, it would have been a different kettle of fish. But he wasn’t, so obviously he has to spend all his days plotting genocide in Africa by denying the legalisation of condoms (how the Catholic Church has attained such power that it can influence Protestant, Muslim, and animist Africans in condom use or lack thereof I don’t know, but there you go), oppressing women, and planning to take over the world and drag us all back to the 13th century (personally, I quite like the 13th century, but that’s just me).

      • obviously he has to spend all his days plotting genocide
        oppressing women
        planning to take over the world
        drag us all back to the 13th century

        Where’s all this bitter angry negativity coming from?? or am I misreading your respectful presentation of another person of whom you have never met?? As we judge so we shall be judged….

        Jesus did not agree with all the thoughts and teachings of his time nor did he agree with the thoughts and actions of all the religious people of his day…but, he did not spread lies.

        • Daisey, I believe Martha was being sarcastic with her remarks. She is echoing what much of the media, especially that in Europe, says or implies when reporting about the Pope.

        • Daisey, I’m remembering the shock! horror! reactions in the mainstream media when the Holy Father was elected; Elizabeth Scalia (of The Anchoress blog) has a good piece looking back on the reactions of the time:


          I was delighted upon his election; I’d have liked Cardinal Arinze but I was very happy when Cardinal Ratzinger succeeded to the Chair of Peter. I never thought that he was going to be as dictatorial as predicted, and I don’t think he has been.

          What he has done is stick to the Magesterium. If you like, I’ll dash off a quick verse of “God bless our Pope” 🙂


        • Thank you Jeff and Martha for your replies!

          I read your post, Martha, over and over, a number of times to see if there was something I wasn’t picking up….honestly I did not see the post with a sarcastic flavor in reference to the media. The choice of words, as posted, for myself, reflect more of the negative anti-catholic reality that exists in the world (including many christian circles). Possibly, because I am still learning the style of the individual IM community responders, I wasn’t able to pick it up as perhaps others could.

          My concern however, would be that someone new or fairly new to this blog who is anti everything traditional, say catholic, would easily pick up on the post and use it to further their opinions. Perhaps a brief inclusion stating you were responding to the media’s representation of the Pope and that things were not being accurately portrayed by them would have made clear your post was not conveying your own personal views. Just a suggestion.

          I am grateful for both your replies and to know that my interpretation was not accurate. It’s equal to realizing a family member is not being unjustly accused of something and for that I thank you both for taking the time to respond.

          Wish I knew how to add a “smiley” face because I would love to do so at this point…just pretend a large one is here…..

  7. My favorite captain of the Enterprise (at least the starship version)?

    I would have said Pickard until I saw Star Trek: Generations (where the two captains were together). I that movie, Pickard had his butt kicked by the villain and had to go into some sort of time cloud to get a 65 year old Kirk to come help him. Then Kirk kicked the bad guy’s butt all by himself.

    Pickard became a wimp in comparison.

    Even more, in comparing the two on screen at the same time, I realized–for all his faults in acting, etc.—Shatner did create a character that would inspire me to follow him into the brink. Pickard could lead, to a degree, but Kirk inspired all the emotions that would make him great and inspire you to be the same.

    So it’s Kirk–hands down.

    • Gotta agree…

    • My favourite Captain?

      Weirdly, Christopher Pike. I have no idea why; I’m Original Series Trek all the way so you’d imagine it’d be Kirk, but for some reason – it’s Pike.

      I’m weird that way – I probably liked Deep Space Nine best of all the new versions (what they did with Voyager was criminal and I still want to commit mayhem on the shower who inflicted Enterprise – which should have been fantastic – upon us.)

    • I’ll have to go with Captain Kirk, but did like the Sisco of Deep Space Nine as well. The others, I lost interest in following them.

  8. So, did anyone tell the militants on the other side that the cultural war is over?

  9. I would like to see Bucky as the captain of the Enterprise. Happy birthday, Jeff!

  10. Happy birthday, Jeff. I like your choice of party gifts to us in this column.

    But (pardon the rhyme) who the heck is Bela Fleck? (I guess I could Google him/her/them, but sloth remains my favorite deadly sin.)

  11. Ok , Jeff, now that I know what you really want for your birthday, I’m sending back the Joe Morgan jersey and autographed Johnny Bench bat…. you just saved me multiple thousands….

    will Linda Ronstadt be doing “Desperado” at you party ?? let me know

    Greg R

    • Arthur Rhodes gave me an early present last night by pitching out of a bases-loaded, no outs jam.

      I’ll take Bench and Morgan over the KJV Bible, please…

      And no Ronstadt. I do have the Fabulous Thunderbirds on my playlist for today, though…

      • I’ll take Bench and Morgan over the KJV Bible, please…

        I knew it, I knew it, I just knew it..

        Greg R

        today while buying a $2 copy of Dixie Chicks “Fly”, I sent chicken fried prayers sqawkin’ at ya….

        • PS: $6.98 would have got me Peter Kreeft’s “We Can Win the Culture War” (for Chap Mike of course), but I ‘just said no’……… it was underlined and drawn upon…

  12. Ah, yes — Get Fuzzy. We can trust the liberal media to present all facets of an event so we can discern the truth. You’re right — it is a *great* comic! How about Zippy?

  13. 1)Get Fuzzy? Get real. I love Dilbert, despite his ugly Jesus series 1-2 years ago around Easter.
    2) The UMC is simply heading the way of all “mainline Protestant” denominations. We left the ELCA recently because of this junk. Many of the pro-gay people try to bless homosexuality while remaining otherwise orthodox, but this story reminds us that “deconstruction” of historical Christianity is available only as a package deal.

  14. Hoorah for Get Fuzzy! Laughter for Gandalf! Belated Happy Birthday for Jeff!

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