Tag Archives: morning services

Thanks to chemistry I’m not punching random people in the face

Seriously, if I wasn’t taking antidepressants I would probably be in jail this weekend. I ran into one of those H8 preachers on the train back from the RPG session, and it was all I could do to not smash him in the face. And the biggest thing encouraging these people is our new POTUS declaring various groups of people as “criminals” and “rapists” or “terrorists” damning an entire religion or race based on nothing more than his personal prejudices. And my particular H8 preacher was hitting all of them, Black people (N-word), Hispanics (Messkins), and all non-Christians (not enough room). As a member of one of those groups (I leave which one to your imagination) I was personally offended. Offended to the point that I almost forgot my manners to not wear out my cane on his head and face. Fortunately with the help of my meds the preacher left the train with his face and dental work undamaged.

I’m not lying here, this was one of the more stressful things I have experienced lately. Not on the same scale as getting killed, or getting my head bashed with a baseball bat in a stairway, or having bullets fly over my head because someone didn’t clear their background when they started burning ammo with their new machine gun, but pretty stressful. And I’m pretty sure H8r got off just in time because I wasn’t the only target for his bile. There were brown people of all shades riding with me and some of them were starting to look unhappy with the H8 preacher right as he left. I didn’t mess him up but neither did anyone else. I guess I wasn’t the only one taking his meds.

Also today was the last morning service at Sacred Journey as part of a 2 part service with the second part being the last evening service. Next week we start our first afternoon service at 1300 which was our compromise between morning people not wanting to “waste” the day, and night-owls unable to rise before the crack of noon. Lately I fall into the latter category kinda by default as I’m having problems getting my brain to shut down before 0500, when I need to get up by 0900 to get to church on time. I have been getting to sleep usually about 0600 or a little earlier, so 0900 would be like getting up at 0300 if you went to sleep at midnight, or Mrs. the Poet getting up at midnight and staying awake the rest of the day. Yes Mrs. the Poet is one of those morning people (shudder).

I’m still working on the mid-Bucket, but I’m not making much progress. The scanner program I downloaded will probably let me get the engine started, but I don’t know if it will let me drive the car as some of the missing inputs are considered safety hazards and may disable the transmission from going into gear, like the ABS, airbag, and seatbelt sensors. But eventually I will be able to start the engine after I have a long heart to heart with the PCM (Chrysler nomenclature for their engine computer and ancillary controls).

Well it’s late and I have a date to take a walk tomorrow later today.

Opus the Unkillable

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I hope you had a happy Valentine’s Day on a Wreck-Free Sunday

For those of you not in a candy coma yet, Happy Valentine’s Day. Or as some of my friends put it “Single People Shaming Day”. Mrs. the Poet and I exchanged favorite chocolate concoctions, hers was Reese’s bars and cups, mine was semisweet baking chocolate (I prefer my chocolate to taste as much like the original recipe as possible). Mrs. the Poet also found some pink bunny Peeps to go with my chocolate because otherwise she wouldn’t have had any excuse to buy them and I’m the only person in my immediate family that likes Peeps (remember that “hanging with my Peeps” picture from the post I did on recovering from getting the tumor removed?).

I’m still working on the Mini Sprint-T model, with rounding up the body color spray paint at an auto parts store and re-sending the order to VCG Resins for the alternative engines and the front end accessories needed to finish off the SBC on the main model. I still need to get the glazing putty to finish making the lower curves on the back of the bucket, make the first mold and cast a second plug, then recontour the second plug to match the Speedway body in 1/25 scale, then make a second mold to use as a negative mold to draw a vacuum on so that the details of the body are on the outside rather than on the inside where it gets covered by the interior bits. There is some transfer of exterior details over to the interior on the 1/1 version because the way it’s made with chopper gun fiberglass sprayed into a negative mold follows the contours of the mold with a more-or-less uniform thickness material. This is similar to what I’m planning on doing except instead of applying a spray of material I’m stretching a uniform (more or less) thickness of material into the mold with a vacuum.

I think the plastic sheet and rod problem has been solved by searching Amazon for hobby supplies, all I need to do now is beef up my gift card account a bit more and maybe wait for a sale. This will take some time, but hey, it’s not like I was doing anything else right?

Yesterday we celebrated 3 family birthdays at the Cheesecake Factory in Frisco (TX, not the nickname for San Francisco CA). Mrs the Poet and I shared a burger and fries and a Kahlua Chocolate cheesecake for dessert. The family birthdays we celebrated are in order they fall in the month, Youngest Daughter on the 4th, Only Son and eldest child on the 8th, and Husband Of Youngest Daughter on the 14th. The meal was good but expensive with the burger alone coming in a $14 plus the drinks and the cheesecake. Fortunately Mrs. the Poet and I aren’t eating as much as we used to when we were more physically active so we are still a cheap night out for dinner.

This morning I did the service I posted yesterday. I managed to get all the videos to play at comfortable volume and visible on the church’s HD TV by running the HDMI cable from this computer to the TV. There was some initial consternation because the remote that turns the TV on and off had been moved to a different location than the last time I did a service with A/V recorded materials, and the HDMI cable had been removed from the TV and also had to be tracked down. The only bad thing was the lack of attendance for whatever reason. I put a lot of work into finding those videos and writing the service so that I could do it with my emotional and mental problems, and having only 5 people show, 4 not counting me, 2 not counting Mrs. the Poet, me, and the guy that brought us. Well, since I was the only one who had seen the finished product prior to this morning that means 4 people got to see it for the first time this morning. Worse things have happened, to me even. I’ll live.

And I think it’s about time to put this to bed so I can go to bed as I’m sleep-deprived from getting up early the last 2 days, and I would say it shows but by this stage nothing short of getting major facial wounds is going to make much difference in my appearance.

PSA, Opus

7/12/2015 Service, Hephaestus

Altar: Hammer and anvil front center, UU Chalice center, god and goddess candles left and right center, Lunation deity jar candle and Aphrodite jar candle left and right rear.

Music intro: Devo, Working in a Coal Mine

Standard church welcome

Quarters

Earth: We dig the ores from the ground that are refined into the metals we use at the forge

Air: Blow inspiration through our minds as you fan the flames of the forge.

Fire: The power of transformation made physical in the forge.

Water: Quench and harden our works as they come from the forge.

Chalice: The stability of the earth, the inspiration of air, the transformation of fire, the emotions of water, all combined with the spark of spirit. Join with me as we read our affirmation. (read affirmation from the wall poster)

God candle: Welcome Hephaestus, from whom we draw inspirations and instruction for today’s service in your honor.

Goddess candle: Welcome Ghisallo, who guards us and guides us on our travels.

Lunation candle: Welcome Zeus as we learn from you this lunation. You whose very thunderbolts are created in Hephaestus’ forge know well the value of a good smith.

Aphrodite candle: Welcome our patroness for the year, and wife of Hephaestus, Aphrodite, whose marriage proves that love does not require possession, nor a leash, but merely the thought in the heart of those who love you. Let us take your love with us as we learn today.

Greetings and welcome again to the July 12th service at SJF UU. Today’s service is on Hephaestus, the greek god of the forge and one of my personal deities.

First a little about Heph. Heph is the son of Zeus and Hera, but unlike his brothers and sisters came out looking like five miles of bad road. We are talking a baby that even his mother couldn’t love he was so ugly, so they grabbed him by the leg and threw him from the heavens to the earth, which besides not doing anything to improve his looks caused him to have a lame and withered leg. Naturally this did nothing to dispose him towards the rest of the Olympian gods, and after residing on the earth for a while as he grew up he created a golden throne for Hera with invisible bindings. When Hera sat upon this throne (because it was very beautiful and very finely crafted) she was unable to rise from it. After determining that this was Heph’s work and only he could release Hera the other gods came and begged him to release his mother, to which Heph replied, “I have no mother.” Harsh, but to be honest if your mom had ordered that you be cast out of the house and it was done in such a way as to cripple you forever, would you be kind to her? anyway after Dionysus got him drunk and dragged Heph and his tools back to Olympus where they built him a palace with a workshop, he cut Hera loose from the throne. This was not to be his last temper tantrum, but that is a tale for another sermon.

“Hephaestus crafted much of the magnificent equipment of the gods, and almost any finely-wrought metalwork imbued with powers that appears in Greek myth is said to have been forged by Hephaestus. He designed Hermes’ winged helmet and sandals, the Aegis breastplate, Aphrodite’s famed girdle, Agamemnon’s staff of office, Achilles’ armor, Heracles’ bronze clappers, Helios’ chariot, the shoulder of Pelops, and Eros’ bow and arrows. In later accounts, Hephaestus worked with the help of the chthonic Cyclopes—among them his assistants in the forge, Brontes, Steropes and Pyracmon.” And that is a direct quote from Wikipedia.

But as fine as all the works of Hephaestus are there is something they all share and something we can all lend. All of them started as… an idea.

Yes, before the first fire was lighted in his forge to heat the metal, he first had the spark of an idea in his mind, blown alight by the breath of inspiration. And that is something we can all do, is create an idea.

One of the followers of Hephaestus greatest rules is to make things that help other people, because if you make something that isn’t any help to anyone, have you really made anything aside from a lump to look at? So today, we are going to make an idea of something to help the church. What can be built that would help the people of the church both now and in the future? This idea will be presented to the Facilities committee this evening as something the congregation thinks would be a good thing to do.

[15 minute brainstorming session]

Write down the idea agreed upon to present to the Facilities committee. or if more than one idea was awesome, present all the awesome ideas to the committee.

In place of cakes and ale, present each person with a nail, and do this story.

Before man had nails all he had was wooden pegs to hold things together. Since each peg had to be carved by hand to fit the holes made in whatever they were building, this took a while and things were built slowly as a result. The someone discovered that you could drive a heavy piece of wire into wood and it would stay in there and hold things together better than hand-carved pegs in drilled holes, and things could be made much faster because nails could be made much more quickly than carving wooden pegs and could be made ahead of time instead of stopping and carving the pegs after drilling the holes and finding out how big the pegs needed to be. While people built things with nails other people could make nails without ever needing to know what kind of thing was being built. I give this to you so that you can carry the idea with you that you don’t have to know the whole of a thing to make an awesome part of it.

Closing song: Anvil Chorus ( https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=c3x-pwJGsgU )

Dismissal: Water, fire, air, and earth, you have all contributed to this service, and we thank you for that. Go now in peace with our gratitude.

Lunation (Zeus): Mighty Zeus, hurler of thunderbolts crafted by Hephaestus and ruler of the gods of Olympus, we thank you for your presence and lessons you may have taught us while you were her. Go now in peace.

Aphrodite: You are the boss’s wife and we thank you for your presence in our circle today and for whatever lessons you may have left with us today. Go now in peace.

Ghisallo: You who protect travellers and who was so revered by your followers that your shrines continued to be built and honored even as another god ruled your lands, we thank you for your presence and any lessons you may have left while you were here. Go now in peace.

Hephaestus: You were the boilerplate for the unfairly dismissed family member, and the inspiration for hundred if not thousands of stories and inventions. We thank you for your inspiration in our service today. Go now in peace.

Chalice: We extinguish this flame, but not the warmth of community, the light of truth, or the spark of commitment. These we hold in our heart until we meet again. Merry meet, to merry part, to merry meet again.

Pass basket and do announcements.

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Happy 50% off chocolate day, on a Wreck-Free Sunday

Today and tomorrow are the days that are usually the best for getting cheap chocolate candy, most of the grocery stores in my area have hacked prices by half or more. Just stay outta my way. I WILL run you over.

The RPG group did not have a good night last night, as we lost two players to personality issues. My warlock could not hit the broad side of a barn with his eldrich blast, I had a bad case of bad dice. My perception and listen checks came out great, I could see and hear all kinds of things that the rest missed. So it averaged out. Also I finally had a chance to use my “you ain’t dead” cantrip spell, twice. Of course had I been able to hit my targets better that would not have been necessary.

I did the service this morning, as some of you may have surmised from the post from last Saturday entitled “Sermon”. I had some technical difficulties with my laptop in that while I could expand my active screen to both the laptop screen to the HD TV we have on one wall, and get audio out through the HDMI cable, I could not get the videos to play on the TV while leaving my sermon up on the laptop screen. They would not drag over to the TV and nothing I did would cause anything I had open on the laptop screen to move to the TV. The workaround was to mirror the display on both screens, have the remote for the TV at the podium with the lap top, and switch the TV off when I had to read the sermon and back on when I had a video to show. The problem with that was I could not read the sermon while the video was showing so I had to read stuff before that I was supposed to read during.

Now I have to get my head together for a sermon due the end of next month, for April Fools’ Day. My previous services on that day have varied in quality between legendary and Stoopid. My Banishing Chaos services tended towards the Stoopid, but some of my embracing chaos services tended to the legendary. The one where I used children to call the elements as Yakko, Wakko, and Dot Warner with one of the mothers in the church to be Hellooo! Nurse was one of the more legendary services I have performed. And the Meditation that turned into a game of Dodgeball also falls under that legendary tending to Stoopid or perhaps Legendarily Stoopid. So I have a high hurdle to surmount of my own creation.

I leave you with this link to a very pleasant video of people bicycling during a steady snowfall. What it Feels Like in Winter Cycling Paradise See, it can be done with the right equipment. Notice that most of those bikes were equipped with studded tires for getting traction on ice.

PSA, Opus