True Stuff that I Made Up

PLEASE NOTE: The entries which are published at this site are solely my personal and sometimes whimsical musings. For information regarding my political positions and proposals, please visit

Further, this website is devoutly dedicated to all of my friends and associates, both early and late, who have mentored and influenced me. However, being who they are, the majority of them have been late most of the time.

  Also, check out my personal entry at

Sunday, February 26, 2006

The Doctor Says My Condition Is Terminal

The Oncologist, Dr. McCormack, told me last Friday that I'm going to die, sooner or later-just like all of us.
The Divine intervention that continued my life here and now is a mystery to him and everybody else on this side of the veil.
There still are no signs of a return of any cancer, but there's also no guarantees about tomorrow for anybody.
That's the way life goes.
Sometimes, we forget that our time here only is part of our journey, and we're not supposed to stay here - that would be a great tragedy, denying us the Providential promise of our birthright.
It's not how long we stay here that counts, but what we do with this mortal probation, especially in our eternal relationships and partnerships.
It's been an amazing journey.

Thursday, February 23, 2006

Morning Thoughts...

The following is excerpts from and amendments to a much longer personal disclosure:
... As you already may have gleaned, I am a man of strong opinions (opinionated, even bullheaded), and I have to constantly work on my listening skills.
Even worse, sometimes (far too often) I just am unaware of how what I believe are just my plain statements of fact and issues are insensitive to the feelings, perceptions, and even the agendas of others; often causing my motives to be misunderstood.
In the personality color code matrix where blue is emotional sensitivity, red is authoritarian, yellow is fun, and white is the need for peace; I balance almost equally with red and blue as my dominant colors.
This often sends messages to others which they see as contradictory, and often it confuses me that what is so clear to me is not so clear to them.
Some only see one side (color) of me, but then are confused and even upset when they experience the other.
I'm told that it's an uniquely Aquarian trait...
...Also, over the years I have gotten a testimony that God's promises and challenges for us are not just an ideal that can't really be reached, but that He always is true to His word, and blesses us in remarkable and often unexpected ways.
He only asks us to seek out His counsel through personal prayer and Scripture study, but also to demonstrate some faith in Him by our own actions.
Also, for me, my regular LDS Temple attendance (not to be confused with Sunday Church attendance) literally has opened up the windows of Heaven.
Sometimes others ask me how I've been able to endure some of my experiences or, conversely, why I have been so blessed.
Both questions confuse me, because I know that I'm just an ordinary man, who has been extraordinarily blessed, and simply because I just have taken God at His word.
It's just that simple, and anyone can have the same blessings.
I'm certainly not the best example of a stalwart Latter-day Saint, not by any means, but I am so eternally grateful for the restored Gospel; and my precious membership and Priesthood in The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints.

Sunday, February 19, 2006

Looking Back, with Gratitude & Awe

It was in 1981, twenty-five years ago, that I was diagnosed with terminal cancer, but inexplicably snatched from death via an incredible Priesthood blessing that was administered by two of my LDS Priesthood brethren and friends, Tom Meranda and Jim Utterback.
Since then, I have experienced many other trials and tribulations, all of which have increased my understanding and appreciation of the purpose of God's Plan of Happiness (See previous weblog entries: "Remembering Debbie & LeeAnn", 12/11/05; "A Providential Prompting & Protection", 11/19/05; "I Remember", 11/16/05; "They Just Call Me Lazarus", 10/23/05; etc.).
Nevertheless, it was thirty-seven years ago (February 22, 1969), that I was given my most profound and eternal blessing, which has been and continues to be such a marvelous work and a wonder in my life.
That was when I was baptized and confirmed a member of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints (See "Best Buddies" weblog entry for my personal conversion story).
Of all the decisions I ever have made throughout my life, none has had more profound and eternal consequences, and none has brought me more personal happiness and peace of mind.
(More information on the LDS Church is available at or 1-800-438-7557)

Sunday, February 12, 2006

So Now You Know (Part II, Part I - 10/28/05)

(I sent this, now amended and redacted, to an old LDS friend, who had responded to my previous wee hours of the morning weblog posting)
With, whither, or all makes me sometimes wonder.
That recent dream has caused me to wonder a little bit more.
Curiouser and curiouser, or so it seems to me.
There's a reason that my life has been preserved so many times, but I'm sure that I don't even begin to comprehend more than perhaps just a hint of it.
Even though I very much would like to remarry and enjoy the partnership and enduring love of an eternal companion, that train already may have left my station too many times to return yet again.
I haven't been dating, and there simply is not any intention or desire on my part to relocate, not even in this area.
The truth is that most LDS single women to whom I am attracted (none in this immediate area) also do not want to leave their homes and hearths either, so there you have it.
Other than that, I go to Church, to work as a prison case manager, and I spend a fair amount of time as a public employee independent union activist (which also involves a good deal of time working with legislators, especially this time of year).
It's true: That dream got me to wondering anew, but I'm not likely to do anything much about it.
Also, I really can't imagine anyone who would be able to endure me and my curmudgeon ways for very long.
That's just reality, and I'm not complaining.
My life already has been blessed in so many ways that I can scarce take it all in.

Wednesday, February 08, 2006

With a Little Help from Our Friends (Or, "The Little Train that Could")

The effectiveness of our little band of brothers and sisters in our Maryland Classified Employees Association (MCEA) Public Safety Non-Custody Employees Chapter has been a marvelous work and a wonder to behold.
Working together, just a handful of us "Bolsheviks" have accomplished so many things, including but not limited to, the creation of an optional four day (ten hour) work week forMaryland Division of Correction (DOC) non-custody employees and a long overdue salary increase for Case Managers.
We also have weighed in heavily on many other DOC and state employee workplace justice issues.....and we've only just begun!
Even so, it has been a lot of hard, frustrating work, and some of our biggest obstacles were some of our own "Eeyore" coworkers, who were not only refusing to join our team, but who also oft times persisted in telling us that we were doomed to failure.
And so it was recently that these thoughts were in my mind, when I received a call from MCEA, asking me to do even more by taking a day off from my work as a Case Manager at Roxbury Correctional Institution (RCI) in Hagerstown to travel to Annapolis and testify before the Maryland House of Delegates Appropriations Committee on the State Employee Prescription Drug Co-Pay Legislation (HB 156) sponsored by Delegate Clarence "Tiger" Davis.
Quite frankly, my first impulse was to decline the request, thinking it was now well past time for others (many of whom live and work closer to Annapolis) to step up and do their part.
And, I just was so weary and frustrated from enduring all the cynicism and criticism from the coworkers who refuse to join our team, but who always seem to have their hands out and asking us to do even more on their behalf.
It was just then that my good friend Jodie Arnold, a Case Manager at the Maryland Correctional Training Center (MCTC) and Secretary of our MCEA Chapter, telephoned me to offer to drive me to Annapolis, and help support me in any way he could.
We went, and it was a good day (Especially since Jodie also paid for my lunch in a little Irish pub).
It is folks like Jodie in our chapter who give me much of my strength and motivation to continue with these efforts.
Although I am blessed with many friends just like him, let me tell you just a little bit more about Jodie:
Recently honored as MCTC "Employee of the Month" (His department coworkers even gave him a little "Burger King" crown to wear), Jodie is a devoted husband of over 30 years, former Correctional Officer, active and educated voter, and that's not all.
He built his home himself (with a little help from some friends), and then opened up his home and hearth to provide a place to live for both his Mother-In-Law and his thirteen year old niece.
It's folks such as Jodie and others in my MCEA chapter who keep me scrambling to be worthy of their friendship and trust.