Wednesday, October 29, 2014

Apoplectic Ebola Syndrome

With only one confirmed ebola death in the US of an individual who contracted the disease elsewhere, and a half-dozen or so cured of ebola in the US mostly contracted elsewhere, the warning must go out about the risk of death by apoplectic fit over unnecessary fear and subconscious political linkage of things from Africa that have a lot of vowels and "b"s.

Yes, the risk of death by apoplectic fit in the political arena is real. A glance at The Political Graveyard website lists more politicians than you can count dying as a result of stroke or apoplectic fit, some in the very act of politics itself!

Wednesday, October 22, 2014

The Lost Mormons of Carson Valley

Genoa (Mormon Station), Nevada, Pioneer Cemetery
There is another tempting title for this, "Journey to Genoa" that has already been used for a highly fictionalized novel of some of the pioneer people of this area, including my family. It isn't very well written in a literary sense. Most of the entertainment value comes from the whoppers of wrong information such as the Cavalry riding in to rescue disaffected Mormons (in 1853) and a questionably historical visit to a San Francisco bordello and opium den. Sigh.

The different title might have distracted web searchers from the book which is decidedly anti-Mormon. And putting the title in here might have the same positive effect.

Monday, October 20, 2014

"I Need a Drink of Cool, Cool Rain"

Yes, I went the long way home. Well, not home yet. I've crashed in a Super 8 somewhere in Nevada. Reasons for that I'll blog later after more time for contemplation on my quest and a sort through my pics.

The thrill I had was a day cruising down the highway all on my own with no agenda, no time schedule, except to get there before dark, and The Who.

As it was raining from Beaverton on south, that gentle, soft, and beautiful Oregon rain, down through the green Douglas Fir each with its unique scraggle of branches, I went back to my youth in neighboring Washington State. I didn't quite get there this time, but it was beautiful across the Gorge. And I didn't get to the Ocean, but the rain was all I needed to revel in my nearly conquered teenage angst.

Saturday, October 18, 2014


My boy went from one amazing corporate culture to another. It was great to visit Disney, and of course, its "land." Yesterday we had the opportunity to see a new, wonderful world of color, mostly green, but stunningly beautiful.

The Nike Campus
Note the brand of shoes our granddaughter wears now. No more Disney Princess shoes!

Wednesday, October 15, 2014

Jacks Valley, Nevada, Tugs at Me

Cruising across that dry table land with a less than Mountain Home in the middle, I could feel the Owyhees on my left in the darkness. That's Nevada! We're on our way to Oregon for a Fall Break visit to my boy and his family. My wife has to fly out of Portland Sunday morning for Scout meetings in Dallas. I plan to stay over 'til Monday and start back home but there's no sense getting there before my wife - or at least until my Welsh class in Provo on Tuesday.

It's not that far. . . .

Sunday, October 12, 2014

Matthew Bristow Wheelwright & the Golden Spike

Maybe he was there, maybe he wasn't, but he has not been officially identified in the famous picture:
The Golden Spike
It's been a life-long desire of mine to get out to the Golden Spike National Historic Site and I finally did. The problem is that it's not on the way to anywhere, except the Spiral Jetty, which is where the Utah Science Teachers were having an outing. My daughter invited me to go along with her family. And it was fun.
Two of my Grandsons with the Jupiter and the 119 at Golden Spike National Historic Site, Promontory Pass, Utah

Friday, October 10, 2014

A Book Report - Let there be Luz in Utah's 2nd

The debate between Glenn Beck's associate Chris Stewart, our Congressman, and Luz Robles of the Utah State Senate the other night, was very entertaining. Robles certainly held her own - skilled on the issues from her state legislative experience - confident and secure in her positions. She reflects the best of Utah values. And as a Democrat in red Utah, she is far from a flaming liberal. She has been successful in working across the aisle. You can see a list of her accomplishments at Wikipedia

Vote Luz Robles

Thursday, October 9, 2014

Mia Doesn't Love Us All - Vote Owens

Mia Love, former mayor of Saratoga Springs, Utah County, Utah, is running for Congress in the 4th District. Well, actually, she is walking to Congress with her safe, low profile and Republican brand. She is hoping that the electorate forgets that she was put up by the tea party and lost by a few hundred votes to Jim Matheson last time. So, she avoids controversy and relies on the overwhelming Republican affiliation of Utah's 4th to put her in Congress.

And I heard her on a news report about her appearance in front of a friendly crowd with Mitt Romney as a friendly supporter. She was giving her platitudes on freedom and "government-is-the-problem" which she wants to prove by governing badly. She closed with the idea that they were going to promote "OUR American Dream!" (emphasis in the original.)

Tuesday, October 7, 2014

The Law Is an Ass

Thinking today about traditional marriage, I read an article about how short-lived our modern concept is. It wasn't that long ago that the Western concept of marriage was that the married couple was a single unit and that unit was the husband. A married woman generally had no legal rights separate from her husband. It was almost as bad as chattel slavery in human beings. We've come a long way, Baby, and I don't think we want to go back.

Monday, October 6, 2014

Back in the Blue with Sam Wang

See for more explanation
It was getting a little scary there for a few days. But Princeton Election Consortium has its polling prediction back with the Democrats plus the Independents for a win in the Senate to maintain control.

Sunday, October 5, 2014

Live-Blogging LDS General Conference, Sunday PM

M Russell Ballard of the Quorum of the Twelve
Cataract Canyon activity - checked the NPS website - guide emphasized safety rules. "Stay in the Boat!"
Crisis of faith and all other challenges of life
The old ship Zion. If you're out on it you might think it's not and jump overboard.
President Young - God is at the helm and will stay there. For the Lord is here.
Given the challenges we all faith, how do we stay
We need to experience a continuing conversion throughout our lives.
Experienced river guides can be likened to church leaders.
We will not and cannot lead you astray.
Those lost and confused are those who have forgotten that when the 1st Presidency and Quorum of 12 speak as a united voice, that is the word of the Lord for this time and circumstance.
They don't live in a bubble - more out of a bubble than most people meeting with President. leaders of other churches and everyday people.
Always wear a life jacket and hold on with both hands.
We need to become like the sons of Mosiah who waxed strong in the knowledge of the church
Search the scriptures. Study and live the Doctrine of Christ. Give ourselves to much prayer and fasting.
Stay focused on these simple things and avoid being distracted.
Joseph Smith the fundamentals of our religion are the testimonies of the Apostles and Prophets of the Savior. Keep our focus on the Lord.
Sometimes members and investigators fail to focus on the essentials and focus on the appendages.
They become preoccupied with less important doctrines.
Questions are OK. Members are always free to ask questions and learn greater understanding.
What matters most. Our Heavenly Father's plan and the Doctrine of Christ.
Stay in the boat. Use your life-jackets. Hold on with both hands to the good ship Zion.

Live-Blogging LDS General Conference, Sunday AM

President Henry B. Eyring of the Quorum of Twelve Apostles
Human logic and intellect get us only so far - we need direct, personal revelation from God
How the Church was restored - Joseph went and asked of God based on James 1:5
Lehi had visions, but Nephi went and did what did because the Lord commanded.

Story of the breaking of the Teton Dam. Directing the relief efforts fell to a Stake President who was a farmer. The feds came and pompously announced what was to be done, the Stake President said those things were already done. Fed guy said he thought he would sit down and listen for a while.
The leader of the Fed team arrived early for the next meeting, "President, what would you like me and the members of my team to do?"

Sealing power, only by direction of the President of the Church.
Pres. Eyring went to convey to a local man outside the US. He does so by the authority of - and he names the current prophet who holds the keys. The man's wife could neither read nor right and didn't feel worthy to go to the temple with her husband. Pres. Eyring taught her that she knew enough by revelation and testimony.

Revelation continues in the church, the President for the church, each church leader for their responsibility, father for his family, each individual for himself.
[And he did already tell a story about his mother's revelation to teach him]

Elder Holland's Talk on the Poor - LDS General Conference, Saturday PM

The official church meme from Elder Holland's talk
There were a lot of tweets and Facebook posts about Elder Holland's talk on the Poor. And knowing and liking him as I do, I wanted to hear it. I pulled up our recording made while we were on the band trip to Logan and I watched it - skipping back a few times to make sure that I got it right. You can check out the recording at

Here are my notes:

Jesus proclaimed his ministry as to the poor. Ancient prophets condemned Israel for mistreating the poor. God said, "They [the Poor] shall not suffer." [Imperative demand]

Saturday, October 4, 2014

Blogging General Conference (Late) Saturday A.M. (got the 2nd half)

A notice for my many fans and readers (both of you). I will not be able to live-blog Saturday Sessions of LDS General Conference as I have to go to Logan (Logan! Of all places!) to support my boy's high school marching band.

I will comment later in an authentic and uplifting manner.

Oh, and I have to mow the lawn before we go to Logan (because nobody else will) so I have to go finish.

Here are some links to watch live, get updates, videos, and text, etc.

OK, Maybe I do get a bit live now:

Thursday, October 2, 2014

Seren Aur - A Gold Star

My face went bright red, and our Welsh teacher seemed sincere when she told me I deserved a star for how I was doing my homework. When my wife is grading homework, I write out the questions and answers in our grammar workbook. Just trying gets a good grade in Welsh 101 as part of their recruitment efforts. (Even for an audit.) I still live in fear of my German 101 teacher from my freshman days. It was German, after all.

The praise came after I read my "Halloween" story. I started out by saying how brilliant it seemed to me at 11 o'clock the night before as I was making last minute corrections in class. It was well received. We all encouraged each other as we went along. As I said, it's not like we're learning "Saesneg" ["Saxon," actually "English." The Welsh hold grudges for a long time - up to 1600 years, at least].

So, here it is. My first story in Cymraeg. We were assigned to write a Halloween story and given a bunch of new vocabulary words. I still don't like Halloween much and I have a hard time writing fiction. So, I wrote a "true" story. It's almost all correct grammatically. I've even got mutating consonants! Plug it into Google-Translate and see what you get: