Thoughts and Sayings (May 2012)

thinkerHere are some thoughts and sayings I posted on Twitter and/or Facebook in April. To my knowledge, I made these up (for better or for worse). Sit back, relax, and enjoy the write!


Encouraging Words

1. When I was younger, I had health and time but no money. As an adult, I have health and money but no time. When I’m old, I will have money and time but not health.

2. I have 24 hours, 2 hands, and 1 brain at my disposal every day. That’s a lot to manage at the same time.

3. Coercion will get you anywhere. Of course, you may not like where it takes you.

4. Success blossoms when others cultivate it.

5. It’s easy to pretend that everything is roses, but it’s hard to hide the wounds when the thorns cut deep.


Twisted Words

6. I’m so plugged in that my feet are in the holes and my head’s in the ground.

7. Inspiration is like lightning. Once it strikes, it quickly bolts.

8. Divided, we Fall. United, we Spring.

9. Why are football (soccer) clubs united? Why can’t one be divided?

10. Someone told me my singing is so cheesy that it sounds nothing like that famous opera singer Pepperoni.



In Its Own Write

11. Writing: The ability to put something back on the page where it belongs.

12. “Write” is a combination of “rite” and “wit.” To do it well takes discipline and whim.

13. Forcing a writer to become a plotter is de-pantsing.



Holidays & Events

14. This year’s April Fool’s Day is now on Friday, the 13th of April, so that you can make people look like fools and give them bad luck.

15. Easter is in April. When is Wester?

16. Completing the monstrous IRS Form 1040 to file U.S. taxes is a reminder why those who file in the Cayman Islands or the Bahamas do.

17. There’s been some kind of mix up. The taxman showed up on my deathbed, and I cheated the Grim Reaper.



Random Musings

18. Today is a good day. I woke up, got the kids off to school, made some coffee, and am now sitting down to work with no interruptions. *knock, knock* Oh, sorry, be right back. Someone’s at the door.

19. I can’t decide who’s tougher — the Iron Lady or Iron Man.

20. Waiting in traffic for a dignitary to pass is such a royal pain.

21. Nothing is hot; everything is hot. All deadlines are imposed.

22. Have gum, will travel. Except to Singapore.

23.  Good night to all, and to all night good.


Click here to read the previous batch of Thoughts and Sayings.

Greetings from Shanghai

Greetings from Shanghai!  We arrived without incident on Saturday morning.  My wife’s family picked us up at the airport and took us to their home in a van.  We spent several hours at their place eating lunch, catching up with family, and eating dinner (eating is a perpetual activity in China).  Easter morning was quiet.  We did not have a church to attend in China, marking the first time I’ve ever missed church on Easter Sunday.  It’s something I always make a point to do, but this time we did not have a church home to attend.  A friend’s friend we tried to connect with could not attend on Sunday morning because she had to work and planned to attend on another day.  It’s hard to find a good church home in a place like Shanghai, especially when you’ve just arrived.  Instead, we spent a quiet morning by ourselves reflecting on the meaning of Easter.  Dear Reader, I hope you also had a good, peaceful Easter weekend.

Yesterday afternoon I went with family and friends to visit Thames Town.  It was fabulous as expected, although it is quite far from town.  It truly does feel like a quaint part of England nestled in China.  The town is under construction and not quite yet open for business.  Land use about 1/4 commercial and 3/4 residential.  The town features a small cathedral and two college campuses as well as a variety of small shops and domiciles.  A British firm is in charge of engineering Thames Town, and I think they’ve done a good job at building an authentic-looking place.  There appear to be covenants in place requiring that the store owners and residents retain the look and feel of the town.  It may seem odd to visit Thames Town, but after seeing it featured on, I couldn’t resist traveling to such an intriguing place.  I’ve seen many of Shanghai’s most popular sites on previous visits, so I wanted to see something entirely new.  Tomorrow night we will visit Xintiandi, another new entertainment, mixed-use area in Shanghai with a traditional Chinese theme.  I hear that it’s one of the new hot spots in Shanghai.  I probably won’t have time to visit any of the other eight new internationally-themed areas, including German Town, Czech Town, and Norway Town.  Thames Town is it for now.  Perhaps I’ll see them on my next tour.


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The Christmas Dilemma

I never know what to buy people for Christmas.  It’s just two weeks until Christmas, and I still don’t know what to buy for a couple of family members.  Sure, I could always get them a gift card from their favorite store, but what’s the fun in that?  Sometimes it’s easy enough to figure what to buy people.  However, sometimes I can’t figure out what they need or want at a reasonable price.  How many small ticket items do people need?  Can’t I just buy them one really expensive gift and let that be their for the next six Christmases?

Christmas may be losing its meaning amidst all the commercialism.  The frantic search for the perfect gift, the muddling through the crowds at the mall, or the quick online purchase definitely do not define the meaning of Christmas.  Christmas has become overly materialistic and sanitized.  It has been adopted as a national holiday and is observed by people throughout the world who are not Christian.  The focus of Christmas has increasingly shifted towards Santa and what gifts he’ll bring, about families reuniting, about expressing love through a purchased product, and goodwill towards men.  While these are good and noble endeavors, they overshadow Christmas’ true meaning.  Christmas is a birthday celebration for Jesus, a carpenter from the Galilee region born about 4 B.C.  It’s been said that his actual birthday would have been in April based on the timing Roman Census that required his parents to journey from Nazareth to Bethlehem prior to his birth.  That would mean Jesus’ actual birthday would be sometime around Easter.  If Christmas is replaced by Xmas or Winter Break or Happy Holiday then perhaps the observance of Jesus’ birthday should be moved to a day closer to the actual day of his birth.  This would reassert the meaning of the holiday without all the commercialistic trappings of Christmas.  The date of Christmas has much to do with the ancient Druid celebration of Winter Solstice.  Moving the date celebrating Jesus’ birth would put it more in line with celebrating it on the actual date of his birth.