Saturday, December 31, 2022

Same Old Lang Syne - Dan Fogelberg

Best of the Web*

*…that I have seen all week!

(BTW, if you wonder where any of the links will take you, hover your cursor over the link.)


Air Force Scraps Spy Planes Used to Fight Border Drug War Due to Lack of Funding
“The Grotesque Lies That Keep America’s Phony “Gun Debate” Going”

Feel Good Friday
DOMESTIC terrorists in Tacoma, Washington, vandalized three power stations on Christmas morning, leaving about 14,000 customers without electricity, according to police - They ain't "burglars" if they don't take nothin'
Night Before Nakatomi Plaza!
Are Universities Doomed? - Victor Davis Hanson
'It's a Wonderful Life' Star Quietly Kept Hundreds of Letters Long After WWII Was Over
‘I Don’t Talk to the Police, Sir’

Sunday Funnies
Today's Toons 12/21/22
Topic: Today's Toons 12/22/22
Today's Toons 12/23/22
Sunday (Monday) Funnies for 12-26-22

Tesla owner says he had to cancel Christmas plans because car would not charge in freezing weather
Electric Garbage Trucks Fail in New York

Larwyn’s Linx: Your Government Hates You
In The Mailbox: 12.27.22
Larwyn’s Linx: How Twitter and Our Beloved Government Betters Rigged the Covid Debate
In The Mailbox: 12.28.22
Larwyn’s Linx: Biden border crisis is turning El Paso into a giant tent city
In The Mailbox: 12.29.22
Larwyn’s Linx: Five least-talked-about stories in 2022 that we need to be worried about in 2023
In The Mailbox: 12.30.22

Quote du jour

"How few there are who have courage enough to own their faults, or resolution enough to mend them."

- Benjamin Franklin

Friday, December 30, 2022

Back To Reality - Victor Davis Hanson podcast

Free Gun Friday

This week's Why Wasn't My Stocking Stuffed Free Gun Friday is a Walther handgun!
To win, enter here.

Thursday, December 29, 2022

Masks and Mimes of Politics - Victor Davis Hanson podcast

Free Gun Thursday

This week's Free Gun Thursday contest ends tomorrow, so, as they say, if you don't enter, you can't win!
1- Bushnell Vault LRF Pouch 
1- Bushnell Prime 1800 
1- Bushnell Prime Bino & Vault Kit 
1- Bushnell Prime 3-12x40 Riflescope Multi-Turret 
1- Weaver Picatinny Rings (Made in USA) 
2- Bushnell Cellucore 20 Solar 
1- Bushnell BackTrack Mini 
1- Silencer Central Banish Backcountry 
1- Smith & Wesson M&P 15 Volunteer XV Pro DMR M-LOK 6mm ARC
You can enter here.

Quote du jour

“The mind, once stretched by a new idea, never regains its original dimensions.”

- Oliver Wendell Holmes

Wednesday, December 28, 2022

Quote du jour

''I cannot make my days longer, so I strive to make them better.''

- Henry David Thoreau

Tuesday, December 27, 2022

Cultural Clarity on Christmas - Victor Davis Hanson podcast

The Known and Unknown - Victor Davis Hanson podcast,

Quote du jour

“Kindred spirits are not so scarce as I used to think. It's splendid to find out there are so many of them in the world.”

- L.M. Montgomery

Monday, December 26, 2022

Quote du jour

“We cannot live better than in seeking to become better.”

- Socrates

Sunday, December 25, 2022

A Little Sunday Night Music

Angels Medley (Hope Has Come)

Quote du jour

“The Son of God became a man to enable men to become the sons of God.”

- C. S. Lewis

Saturday, December 24, 2022

A Little Saturday Night Music

Noel Paul Stookey - Christmas Dinner

Peeking Through Fingers: A Look at the Decline of Education - Victor Davis Hanson podcast

Best of the Web*

*…that I have seen all week!

(BTW, if you wonder where any of the links will take you, hover your cursor over the link.)


Biden Deceived Americans With One Heck of a Whopper About Jobs Before Election -Claimed over a million. Actually, was only 10,500

Feel Good Friday
Arrested Antifa 'terrorist', 22, is son of millionaire Maine SURGEON: Grew up in gigantic $2m Kennebunkport mansion and sailed on parents' stunning yacht
Exasperated octogenarian kills African immigrant in Charleville-Mézières
Truce in the Forest

Sunday Funnies
Sunday Funnies For 12-18-22
Today's Toons 12/14/22
Today's Toons 12/15/22
Today's Toons 12/16/22

Home Defense: Pistol, Shotgun or Rifle?
High Winds Cause Wind Turbine, Meant to Spin in Wind, to Spin Out of Control and Fall Down

In The Mailbox: 12.19.22
Larwyn’s Linx: More Twitter Files: Intelligence Community Pressure Campaign against Twitter
In The Mailbox: 12.20.22
Larwyn’s Linx: To Cover DOJ/FBI Crimes, Radical Democrat Andrew Weissmann Spied on Congress
In The Mailbox: 12.21.22
Larwyn’s Linx: Only one word accurately describes the crime the FBI has committed: Treason
In The Mailbox: 12.22.22
Larwyn’s Linx: FBI response to Twitter Files is on brand
In The Mailbox: 12.23.22

Friday, December 23, 2022

McCarthy, Trump, and Musk: All Contested - Victor Davis Hanson podcast

Bonus Free Gun Friday

Our almost Christmas Bonus Free Gun Friday is a bolt action dream in 6.5 Creedmoor!
You can enter here. 

 PS: Finish your shopping! This won't get there in time to slide under the tree!

Free Gun Friday

For Free Gun Friday, how does a civilian, belt fed Squad Automatic Weapon(SAW) sound? Me, too!
To enter, click here.

The Christmas Card

The Christmas Card - a new short story by Mary M. Isaacs

    It’s like herding cats! Linda thought with a smile. Fortunately, she loved cats—almost as much as she loved the little children standing together in front of her. She was trying to line them up on the low platform that had been set up for them, and get them into order by height. They were wiggling and giggling, as always—both eager to begin and a little shy of the strangers who were coming into the room.

    Her Sunday School primary class (3- to 5-year-olds) had come to this nursing home to sing a few Christmas songs. For several weeks they had practiced and had also been busy making Christmas cards to hand out. The cards were made from all colors of construction paper, folded over, with stickers and drawings and their names, too, in various stages of legibility. Linda would have liked to add glitter—both she and the children loved it—but the nursing home had requested its absence. Linda recalled the first year she had come with her class for this singing, bringing along well-glittered cards. She clearly remembered how the glitter had mysteriously multiplied and spread itself all over the nursing home. She had volunteered to help clean it up. It had taken hours…

    This year’s unglittered cards were stacked in a basket on the floor near her. After the children had sung their Christmas carols, they would hand out their cards to the residents of the nursing home, who were now taking their places in the large room. The children’s parents were already sitting in folding chairs along the wall at the back, but the residents were still walking in, using canes, walkers, or moving slowly on their own two feet. One side of the room had many armchairs. Some were already occupied; it looked like they all would be, soon. The other side of the room had been kept clear. Orderlies were pushing in other residents who were in wheelchairs, filling up the empty space in rows.

    Linda had been bringing her Sunday School children to this nursing home for several years, at Christmas and Easter. The classes looked forward to it. It was an exciting trip to an unfamiliar place, and they loved singing together. And of course, they fully enjoyed making their cards.

    Finally, one of the administrators told her that everyone was there who was able to be there. Linda thanked her and then spoke to the children. She told them that it was just about time to begin. Several of them got scared looks, especially the youngest ones, but Linda smiled at them. “You all look so nice, and they will love to hear how beautifully you’re going to sing!” She meant it, too—she was so proud of them. They had all dressed in their best for this visit. The boys were in shirts with ties, some even with suit jackets. The girls had fancy Christmas dresses, and some had sparkly bows in their hair. Linda felt a rush of love in her heart as she looked at them.

    She turned and introduced them to the residents. “We hope you will enjoy our songs!” she added. “If you know the words, please sing along with us!” She then turned back to the children, whispered “Jingle Bells”, and raised her hand for a 1-2-3 countdown. The program had begun!

    Of course, most of the residents sang “Jingle Bells” along with the children, and of course the children sang it as they always did, with a lot of enthusiasm. Linda had picked that song to be first for those very reasons. She had the children sing it through several times, to give all the older people a chance to join in if they wanted to. The children were thrilled to hear their audience singing with them. Linda had anticipated that, too.

    When they finally stopped singing “Jingle Bells”, many of the residents clapped and made comments about how nice it was (some of them kept singing a little longer, but Linda knew that would happen. Let them enjoy themselves—they’re having a good time!) The children’s parents clapped, too.

    The children were delighted by the reception they got and sang the rest of their songs with spirit: “Away in a Manger”, “We Wish You a Merry Christmas”, “Rudolph the Red-Nosed Reindeer”, and “Silent Night”. The residents loved every moment, and joined in singing every song. Linda felt that they would appreciate an encore, so she had the children sing “Jingle Bells” one more time. This time everyone sang, including all the parents. Their combined voices filled the room with warm feelings.

    After all the voices had quieted down, Linda picked up her basket and addressed the residents. “The children have been very busy making Christmas cards for you. And they are going to give them to you, right now, and wish you a

    Merry Christmas!” She picked up the card on the top of the pile and read the signature. “Allie?” she called out and looked at the group of children. One of the pretty Christmas dresses stepped out of the lineup on the platform and took the card. Allie walked over to an elderly woman in a wheelchair and handed her the card. “Merry Christmas!” she said and smiled shyly. The older woman took the card but looked right into the girl’s eyes. “Thank you, dear—and Merry Christmas to you, too!” Then Allie skipped to the back of the room and stood by her mother.

    Linda picked up the next card. “James?” The tallest boy in the back row grabbed the card and gave it to a man sitting in one of the chairs, with a greeting and a grin. The older man took the card and said, “Merry Christmas! Such a fine young man!” James looked proud as he walked back to his parents.

    One at a time, Linda gave cards to the children and the children delivered them to the residents. She always started with the older ones now. Many of them had done this before, either at Easter or Christmas last year, so they knew what to do. The younger children could watch them and later follow their lead. Years ago, Linda had tried to start with the younger children, but most of them had become completely shy or scared. You live and learn! she reminded herself.

    Soon, most of the cards had been handed out. Linda called one little girl’s name and handed her the card she’d made. But the three-year-old stayed put, shaking her head. Linda bent over her and asked quietly, “Do you want to take your card home, Katie?” Sometimes a child wanted to do that; Linda never forced them to give it away. But the little girl shook her head even harder. “It’s for the grandpa,” she whispered, looking anxious.

    “You want to give it to your grandpa?” Linda asked her in a lowered voice.

    The little girl frowned and said, “No—the grandpa here!”

    Linda said, “Oh, the grandpa here! Is he in this room?” Another shake of the head was the only answer. “Is he somewhere else in this place?” The little girl nodded and looked pleadingly at Linda. “Should we go find him when this is over?” More nods and the beginnings of a smile. “Okay, why don’t you go sit with your daddy now, and we’ll look for the grandpa later.” The little girl smiled hugely as she clutched her card and ran to sit on her father’s lap.

    The rest of the cards were given out, but Linda still had a few in her basket. “A couple of our Sunday School children couldn’t be here today, but they made extra cards—is there anyone who didn’t get one yet?” A few people raised their hands and Linda gave each of them a card, with a personal “Merry Christmas from Robby!” or “from Grace” or “from Andrew”, whichever name was written on the card.

    When everyone had received a card, Linda said, “Thank you all for coming to our program! Merry Christmas to each one of you, and God bless you!” The residents slowly got up to leave or were pushed out in their wheelchairs. Many of them exchanged Christmas greetings with the children and their parents as they passed by them. Linda picked up her belongings and followed slowly, glad to see the interactions. After all the residents were gone, the parents helped their children put on their coats. Linda thanked them for coming. “I’ll see you next Sunday, in church school!” she added, as they left the room with their excited, happy children.

    Linda waited until the room was nearly empty, and then she turned to the small girl and her father. “Katie says she saw a grandpa here who wasn’t in this room, and she wants to give her card to him.” She looked at Katie’s dad questioningly. “Do you know who she means?”

    He looked puzzled for a moment and then said, “Maybe… When we came in the front door, there was a man lying on a movable bed in the entry hall. Katie seemed fascinated by seeing a bed that wasn’t in a bedroom, and she asked a lot of questions.” He looked down at his daughter. “Is that who you want to give your card to, honey? The man in the bed on wheels?”

    “Yes!” said Katie, as she slipped off her father’s lap and took his hand.

    “Well, let’s go find him!” said Linda. She put on her coat, put her purse in the basket, and they left the room.

    The three of them walked down a long corridor. As they came to the entry hall, Katie’s face suddenly glowed. A wheeled bed was parked against the wall; a man was lying on it. His eyes were closed and his arms were tucked under the blanket. His chest rose and fell regularly, Linda noted, thanking God….

    “Is this the grandpa you were talking about, Katie?” Linda stooped down and asked quietly. Katie looked up at her with a big smile and a nod, and then looked back at the man on the bed.

    Linda said, “I think he’s asleep right now, but I know he’ll love looking at your pretty card when he wakes up.”

    Katie’s dad picked her up and brought her close to the bed. She leaned over her father’s arm and put her card on the man’s blanket, right over his heart. Her face was very happy. “Merry Christmas! I love you,” she said in a whispery voice. Then she snuggled against her father and leaned her head on his shoulder, still smiling at the man on the bed.

    Linda looked over at Katie’s dad in surprise. He smiled at her, and then kissed his little daughter. “Come on, honey, it’s time for us to go home.”

    Katie took her eyes off the man and looked at her teacher. “Bye, Miss Linda!” she said with a little wave.

“Good-bye, Katie—I’ll see you next week!” Linda replied. She watched as the man and the child walked across the entry hall and out the door.

        After a moment, she turned back to look at the sleeping man. He was still breathing quietly; Linda carefully repositioned the card so that it wouldn’t fall off his chest. I wonder what he’ll think when he wakes up and finds the card, she thought. Will he know that a tiny little angel has been here?

She smiled gently to herself--and then she, too, walked to the door and left.


Copyright 2022 by Mary M. Isaacs 

-from a forthcoming book

Quote du jour

“Reflect upon your blessings, of which everyone has plenty, not on your past misfortunes, of which everyone has some.”

- Charles Dickens

Thursday, December 22, 2022

Quote du jour

“I play the notes as they are written, but it is God who makes the music.”

- Johann Sebastian Bach

Wednesday, December 21, 2022

Quote du jour

"If you see ten troubles coming down the road, you can be sure that nine will run into the ditch before they reach you."

- Calvin Coolidge

Tuesday, December 20, 2022

Quote du jour

“Look at how a single candle can both defy and define the darkness.”

- Anne Frank

Monday, December 19, 2022

Some Positive Actions To Undo the Left's Destruction - Victor Davis Hanson podcast

Quote du jour

“Most human beings have an almost infinite capacity for taking things for granted.”

- Aldous Huxley

Sunday, December 18, 2022

A Little Sunday Night Music

O Come All Ye Faithful - The Tenors

We Have a Winner!

Yes, we have a winner in our Free Book Tuesday giveaway! The winning entry:
"Corpus Christi" is my favorite Mary M. Isaacs story - - except when my favorite is "The Angelus." I simply cannot choose between the two stories; I like each one that much. Each story fascinated me from the start, making it impossible to stop reading till I raced to the end. I love the rich description in the stories, the understanding of human nature, the plots which don't necessarily follow where I think they're leading. Most of all, I cherish the strong and bold Christianity in each story. The surprise ending in "Corpus Christi" is masterful. The rock-strong faith in "The Angelus" gave me heart. Thank you, Mary M. Isaacs, for sharing you God-given gift for writing with the world.

-Bonny Blue

Bonny's reward will go out in tomorrow's mail. And we thank Bonny and all the participants in our giveaway.  For those of you still interested in obtaining one of Mary's books, check out the ads on the sidebar!

Have a Merry Christmas!

Stephen's Feast

 Continuing our retrospective of Mary M. Isaacs' short stories...This one was published here Dec 20, 2020


      Owen was on his way home, tired and hungry after a long day at work. It was the day after Christmas, but someone had to staff the office even though it was usually a very quiet day. He had volunteered, so that all his married colleagues could spend an extra day home with their families. There was no one for him to celebrate with, not even a dog, so he didn’t mind coming into work right after the holiday.


      The weather wasn’t looking good; it had been cloudy all day, with a couple of brief showers, but now it was threatening heavy rain. It would be a long drive home, as he lived over 25 miles away from the office–freeway driving most of the way, but always slow and tricky in bad weather. Better stop and get some dinner now, he thought. Maybe that BBQ place—yeah, that would taste good! I’m really hungry. I’ll get a BBQ sandwich meal for tonight and an extra sandwich for tomorrow’s lunch. And maybe an extra side—two are never enough. Their sides are good enough for a meal on their own… I just hope they haven’t run out of anything!


      He reached the BBQ place and turned into the parking lot. He went inside, breathing in the delicious smell as soon as he opened the door. As he stood in line, he went through the usual uncertainty of which of the sides he would order. They offered six, but he knew he should limit himself to three. By the time he reached the front of the line, he had decided on the mac and cheese and the cole slaw, with corn muffins extra. As he was ordering, though, he kept thinking about the fries. Regular or sweet potato? I’m so hungry… The young boy behind the counter waited patiently while Owen thought, clearly used to patrons’ indecision about sides. “And regular fries, too,” Owen finally announced. As he waited for his order to be assembled, he noticed that some light rain was starting to fall. Owen added a large cup of coffee to his order, realizing that it could be a while before he reached home, and he might need it.

      Owen paid for the food and the full bag was handed over. He left the BBQ place and hurried to his car, dodging raindrops. He considered putting the bag on the seat next to him, so he could snack on the fries at least, but decided to wait until he got home. If he put it behind his seat, he wouldn’t be tempted to eat while driving. Man gets into accident on the freeway while eating cole slaw during rainstorm; details at 11, he laughed to himself.

     It wasn’t far from the BBQ place to the freeway. As he approached the on-ramp, he saw a hitchhiker by the entrance, holding a cardboard sign that read, “Porterville”. He knew that city was about 150 miles to the north. Bad night for hitchhiking such a long distance, he thought. And the man had no umbrella or overcoat, just a yellow rain poncho over his shoulders. Owen passed him by, heading north on the freeway—but continued to think about the man, sitting on the side of the road as a rainstorm was just about to hit. Abruptly, he got off at the next exit, turned left onto the overpass, and got back on the freeway heading south. At the next exit, he repeated the moves. Owen pulled to the side of the road right at the on-ramp and honked at the hitchhiker, who quickly got into the car, carrying a small shoulder pack. Owen told him he was going about 25 miles north, towards Porterville, and would drop him at the freeway entrance where he turned off.

      He got back on the freeway just as it started to rain harder. The hitchhiker peered out through the windshield and said, “Looks like this’ll be coming down for a while. Thanks for picking me up.”

      The man was shivering slightly. “Pretty cold out there, right?” Owen asked. He turned the heat up in the car. Glancing sideways, Owen saw that the hitchhiker was on the thin side and looked very tired. “Take off your poncho if you like,” he told the man. “Saw your sign– Porterville. How long you been on the road?”

      The hitchhiker pulled the poncho off, rolled it up, and shoved it down by his feet. “I left Madison City early this morning. I was hoping to make it to Porterville by nightfall, but haven’t had many rides, and most of them were short. I guess the weather hasn’t helped.” He looked out the window again as the rain increased. After a moment, Owen remarked, “I haven’t been to Porterville for a long time.”

      “I’ve never been there. But my sister lives there, with her family. We’ve talked on the phone. She’s happy there; sounds like a nice place. I wanted to surprise her and make it there by Christmas. Didn’t manage that, but I called her and let her know that I was on my way. She said that’d be a pretty nice Christmas present.” He paused for a moment. “I haven’t seen her in a long time. Years,” he added. He looked over at Owen and said, “Thanks for picking me up. Maybe I’ll make it there tonight after all.”

      “No problem. By the way, my name’s Owen.” He took one hand off the wheel and held it out to the other man while introducing himself.

      The man grinned. “Very glad to meet you, Owen. I’m Steve.” They shook hands and then settled back into a comfortable silence.

      The rain came down harder and Owen put the windshield wipers on high; they made a hypnotic sound as they swept from side to side. He wondered to himself what was going to happen to his passenger if he didn’t make his destination that night—because it seemed more than likely that he wouldn’t. Owen turned on the CD player; soft instrumental Christmas music filled the car. “That’s nice,” said Steve, and then he took a deep breath. “Sure smells good in here,” he said.

      “I stopped for some BBQ sandwiches,” Owen said. “You want one? Reach behind my seat and get the bag.” “I can’t eat your dinner,” Steve replied. “What will you eat then?” “Don’t worry, I bought two sandwiches. There’s one to share.”

      “Well, if you’re sure…thanks.” Steve reached behind Owen’s seat and carefully lifted the heavy bag and put it on his lap. He opened it and got out one of the wrapped sandwiches.

      “There should be a fork and napkins in there, and some sides. They always come with sides. Help yourself to anything—I’m not very hungry, but they always include sides, so I take them.”

      Nodding his thanks, Steve started in on the sandwich. He ate rather quickly. He must be really hungry, Owen said to himself. Then he remembered something. “Here, better have this coffee too. It’ll be cold before I can get it home.” He lifted the covered cup out of the cup holder and handed it to the man.

      “Thanks a lot,” Steve said as he grasped the cup, uncovered it, and took a drink before putting it back into the holder. “Hey, man, God bless you. I haven’t had much to eat today. This is really nice of you.” He finished the sandwich and started to open the container of one of the sides. It was the mac and cheese; Owen tried not to look as Steve finished it off and started on the cole slaw, while drinking the coffee. He went by that BBQ place twice a day during the week—he could always get more. He was glad he had something to share.

      The light had almost faded completely by now and the rain was coming down in sheets, off and on. Owen kept his eyes on the road and the rear-view mirror for the next few miles. There wasn’t much traffic, but visibility was bad and there was always the chance of a skid with the roads this wet. While he concentrated on driving at a safe, reduced speed, he wondered how his passenger would manage to get a ride in this pouring rain. No one will want to pick him up this time of night–he’ll be dripping wet and it’ll be dark. He’ll have to sleep under the overpass, or at a bus stop or something. He might even get sick. He considered this for a while, and then turned to Steve to ask him what his emergency plans were. But Steve had fallen asleep, still holding the empty coffee cup. Owen reached over, gently took it from his hand, and put it in the cup holder. Steve didn’t stir. Long day, full stomach, warm car—he’ll sleep for quite a while, I think. He probably really needs that.

      Owen continued to drive in silence, with only the sound of the windshield wipers to accompany his thoughts. Just then, he saw a mileage sign—½ mile to his turnoff, 125 miles to Porterville. Only a couple hours more. IF he gets a ride. Owen looked over at the sleeping man again, frowning slightly.

      Without being fully conscious of his decision, he drove past his exit and continued north on the freeway. With any luck, he’ll sleep most of the way, so no arguments—and he’ll be rested, ready to see the family. They’ll still be up, maybe, and be glad to see him. Owen smiled, thinking about Steve seeing his sister again, after years of separation. It won’t be too long of a ride back. Anyway, I like driving.

      He continued down the road, navigating carefully through the downpour. But even through the rain, he could still see many strings of colored lights on either side of the road–still brightly shining, this first day after Christmas.


                                              @2019, Mary M. Isaacs

From the book Christ Child’s Lullaby. As seen on the sidebar.

Author’s note:

The title, “Stephen’s Feast”, refers not only to the hitchhiker having a good meal, but also to St. Stephen’s Day (The Feast Day of St. Stephen)–December 26, the day after Christmas, which is when the story is set. More importantly, the entire story is a contemporary interpretation of my favorite Christmas carol, “Good King Wenceslas”. The first line of that carol is “Good King Wenceslas looked out/on the Feast of Stephen…” i.e., the carol takes place on December 26. You might want to look up the words if you don’t know them all.

“Owen” is the closest name I could get to Wenceslas. The hitchhiker is the “poor man” in the carol whom the “king” [Owen] spies through his window [car window] on December 26. The boy at the BBQ place is the “page” who supplies Owen with “flesh, wine, and pine logs” [the BBQ sandwiches and sides, the hot coffee, and the warm car].

The carol ends with the words, “Therefore, Christian men be sure/Wealth or rank possessing/Ye who now shall bless the poor/Shall yourselves find blessing.” At the end of the story, Steve is blessed and Owen is happy with what he has done.

Quote du jour

"How do people feel about God after meeting you?"

- Dr. Robert A. Cook

Friday, December 16, 2022

Free Gun Friday

Our "Don't shoot your eye out!" Free Gun Friday this week is an AR-15 in 6mm and a 3.5x18 50mm scope!
To enter, click here.

Quote du jour

"Nothing can stop the man with the right mental attitude from achieving his goal; nothing on earth can help the man with the wrong mental attitude."

- Thomas Jefferson

Thursday, December 15, 2022

Wednesday, December 14, 2022

Prisoner Swaps and Shadow Banning - Victor Davis Hanson podcast

Quote du jour

"Either write something worth reading or do something worth writing."

- Benjamin Franklin

Quote du jour

“What you get by achieving your goals is not as important as what you become by achieving your goals.”

- Henry David Thoreau

Tuesday, December 13, 2022

Quote du jour

"Like most institutions in our country, like most agencies in the government, like many professional organizations, press, medical, science, [the FBI is] being slowly politicized. And I think it is ruinous to the country, and the next Republican administration is going to have to clean things out."

-former AG Bill Barr

Monday, December 12, 2022

Woke and Its Fallout - Victor Davis Hanson podcast

Quote du jour

"He is happiest, be he king or peasant, who finds peace in his home."

- Johann Wolfgang von Goethe

Sunday, December 11, 2022

Dark and Cold is the Night

 Dark and Cold is the Night 

Dark and cold is the night--

High above, a star shines bright.

Far down below in the stable small,

A young woman cradles the hope of all.

   She rocks her child to sleep

   While angels vigil keep.

He is Lord of the earth,

Yet he had a humble birth.

No silken sheets to caress his form,

Only some hay to keep him warm.

   She holds her baby tight--

   She guards him in the night.

Angels appear in the skies,

Glory bursts on shepherds' eyes!

Hastening back to Bethlehem town,

Finding the manger and kneeling down.

   The love of God for all

   Rests in a child so small.

Gifts from over the sands,

Carried in the Wise Men's hands:

Gold is the gift for a mighty King,

Frankincense for worshiping,

   And myrrh…to mark his death.

   His mother holds her breath.

Dark and cold is the night--

High above, a star shines bright.

Far down below in the stable small,

A young woman cradles the hope of all.

   She rocks her child to sleep

    While angels vigil keep.


                         (copyright 2018, Mary M. Isaacs)

 "Dark and Cold is the Night " is part of the collection in "Christ Child's Lullaby",

as appears on the sidebar.

Saturday, December 10, 2022

A Little Saturday Night Music

Dropkick Murphys - "The Season's Upon Us"

Best of the Web*

*…that I have seen all week!

(BTW, if you wonder where any of the links will take you, hover your cursor over the link.)


Not Funny: Liberals Are Furious Conservative Supreme Court Justice Has Sense of Humor
Joe Biden Can’t Find Time to Inspect Border After Vacationing 271 Days in 2 Years: ‘There Are More Important Things’

Feel Good Friday
College Admissions: Merit Matters
Sandra Merritt Fights Ruling Forcing Her to Pay Planned Parenthood $16 Million
Headless Woman in Hopeless City

Sunday Funnies
Sunday Funnies For 12-04-22

Larwyn’s Linx: The Twitter Files: Hunter Biden Laptop Edition
In The Mailbox: 12.05.22
Larwyn’s Linx: Growing number of GOP leaders, elected officials: it's time for a change in RNC leadership
In The Mailbox: 12.06.22
Larwyn’s Linx: How Corrupt is a Corrupt Media? [VDH]
In The Mailbox: 12.08.22 (Morning Edition)
Larwyn’s Linx: Will GOP Commit Political Suicide With Bipartisan Amnesty Bill?
In The Mailbox: 12.08.22 (Evening Edition)
Larwyn’s Linx: Kyrsten Sinema Makes Shocking Move and Leaves Democratic Party, Hysteria Ensues
In The Mailbox: 12.09.22

Quote du jour

For a government "of the people, by the people and for the people", the government sure keeps a lot of things FROM the people!

- Mike B, on the 15,000 documents still sealed from the JFK assassination

Friday, December 9, 2022

Boondoggles and Bombers - Victor Davis Hanson podcast

Bonus Free Gun Friday

This week's bonus Free Gun Friday is to start to save a little cash reloading your own, or fine tuning your ammo to knock the dandruff off a flea at 100 yards!
You can enter here.

Free Gun Friday

This week's Free Gun Friday is in .300 Win Mag!
You can enter here.

Quote du jour

“Until we have begun to go without them, we fail to realize how unnecessary many things are. We've been using them not because we needed them but because we had them.”

- Socrates

Thursday, December 8, 2022

Quote du jour

"Nobody made a greater mistake than he who did nothing because he could do only a little."

- Edmund Burke

Wednesday, December 7, 2022

Quote du jour

“Yesterday, December 7, 1941 — a date which will live in infamy — the United States of America was suddenly and deliberately attacked by naval and air forces of the Empire of Japan.”

– Franklin D. Roosevelt

Monday, December 5, 2022

Sen. Marsha Blackburn on the Republican Path Forward - Victor Davis Hanson podcast

Quote du jour

"Never lose an opportunity of seeing anything beautiful, for beauty is God's handwriting."

- Ralph Waldo Emerson

Sunday, December 4, 2022

Christ Child's Lullaby

 Continuing our retrospective of Mary M. Isaacs' short stories...This one was published here Dec 12, 2021

Rose hurried, so she wouldn’t miss the beginning of the church service. It was already too late for her to take her place in the choir—she couldn’t have, anyway, because of the cold and laryngitis that had crept up on her the past several days. She knew it was coming and it made her heart sink. There was nothing Rose loved more than singing, and she especially looked forward to Christmas time when she could sing the beautiful music she had adored and sung since childhood. She knew she had a good voice—her friends told her that, choir directors told her that, even strangers in church said so. That didn’t matter, one way or another. She just loved to sing; she would sing even if her voice had been plain and ordinary.

She buttoned up her overcoat and put on a woolen cap, gloves, and snow boots. It was bitterly cold outside, and the forecast had called for more snow sometime before morning. Even though it was too late to protect her voice from the cold, Rose still needed to keep warm. The church was very large; good for singing but bad for warmth. As she was not going to be in the relatively sheltered group of singers standing shoulder-to-shoulder, but instead sitting in a cold wooden pew by herself, she needed the heavy outer clothing.

She remembered to turn the heat down in her small apartment. She also left a few lights on, as her parents had advised when she moved to the city. After locking the door, she hastened down the stairs and out through the glass doors of the lobby. No one was around—too cold, too late at night. Everyone was either snug at home, or already where they were going for the evening. She turned at the corner and made her way down several blocks, avoiding icy patches and leftover drifts of snow. It had been a rough week for weather, so she was careful how and where she stepped.

The bulk of the old church soon loomed on her left. She saw a few people climbing the stairs and pulling open the heavy wooden doors. She followed them, entering the quiet darkness of the narthex; there were candles burning there and also inside the sanctuary. An older man greeted her and handed her a bulletin. She looked at it as she made her way to a side aisle and seated herself at the end of a pew. The church was partly full. The service began almost as soon as she sat down…

Rose loved every moment—even the times when the choir sang alone, when she should have been singing with them. The words of their special music echoed in her heart and she imagined herself singing along. It was almost enough, but still she felt a little sad. When the congregation stood for the Christmas carols, she stood, too. After the first words of the first carol, when her voice came out as a broken whisper, she didn’t try to sing any more, but let the words and music flow around and through her. She thought the words, remembering all the years before of singing these beloved songs. Next year, next year; it will be better next year, she promised herself–next year I will sing and sing, every song! But she had a few tears. Her throat hurt and she controlled her coughing as much as possible.

In between songs and Scripture readings she looked around. The familiar church looked especially lovely in candlelight. It was so large that the ceiling was shrouded in darkness. The wood of the old, worn pews glowed in the dim light. There was a large painting on a side wall close to the front, of Mary holding the child Jesus on her lap. The light from so many candles made the image flicker a little, giving the impression of faint movement, as of breath. Mary’s eyes seemed to look right at her, sending comfort and strength, as though she knew all about Rose’s impaired voice. A wave of love came to her as she looked at the painting.

Many people sat around her. Some looked familiar, from Sunday services (although she only knew the choir members, somewhat). However, as it was the last Sunday before Christmas Eve, there were people she had never seen before—some shabby, some looking troubled or sad, others looking serene and happy. Each face held different emotions. Young and old, rich and poor, all were represented in the gathering. All had come, like Rose, to experience the hushed time of waiting and expectation.

The service came to an end and most of the people began to depart. The lights remained off as the celebrants and congregation left in candlelight. Rose noticed a few people remaining seated, in prayer or quietly waiting in the shadows.

Preparing to leave, her eyes were caught again by the painting of Mary and her son. Deep within her, she heard a silent request, a request for her to stay. Although unspoken, it was strong and compelling; Rose remained standing, facing forward, as she listened to the sweet voice inside her. After a few moments, something moved her to leave the pew and walk up the aisle toward the front of the church. Towards the painting. As she came closer, the image grew clearer and richer.

She glanced at the pews around her as she walked past. By this time they were empty, except for a few people scattered here and there. They all seemed absorbed in thought or prayer. She knew most of them slightly—there was the young woman who had shared, over coffee hour, that her husband had left her. She sat hunched over, holding her face in her hands. Farther away was the man who had been giving out the bulletins. Rose remembered that he had been laid off from his job only a week or two ago. What an awful time of year to be unemployed, she thought. She walked past an older woman who was crying silently, tears spilling down her face. Her hands were grasped together tightly. Across the aisle was an elderly couple, sitting close to each other. Rose knew they were in fragile health and were very worried about that. How did they manage to get here safely, through the icy streets? she asked herself. A young man sat quietly, with his eyes closed. Rose recognized him from past Sundays, but she was always too shy to speak to someone she didn’t know, even though he looked nice.

She finally reached the front of the church. She stopped a few feet from the painting and waited quietly, looking straight into Mary’s eyes. The voice came again…

“Sing to my Son for me.”
“But my voice is gone,” Rose whispered sadly.
“Sing to my Son for me.”
“My lady, I can’t!” tears gathered in Rose’s eyes and began to fall.
“Yes, you can. Please sing to Him.”

Rose looked down and was silent for a moment; she then raised her head, took a deep breath, and began to sing. Her heart soared, higher and higher, as she sang. It was like being lifted to the stars.

“My son, my treasured one are you,
My sweet and loving son are you,
You are my love, my darling, new–
Unworthy, I, of you.
Alleluia, alleluia, alleluia, alleluia.”

While Rose sang the old Scottish lullaby, a small part of her wondered at how she no longer had laryngitis, at how strong and clear her voice was. But mostly she was focused entirely on the song, the words, the emotions. Her grandmother had sung this lullaby to her countless times when Rose was a little girl. While she sang it, she remembered being held close in her grandmother’s arms as she slowly drifted off to sleep. It was the right song, the perfect song to sing to baby Jesus, the Christ child.

Mary’s eyes in the painting shone in the candlelight as the song words floated, high and clear, throughout the church. A sense of peace blanketed everyone there. The elderly couple looked at each other lovingly and moved closer together, clasping each other’s hands. Their worries and fears subsided as they rested in the beautiful music. The young woman whose husband had left her raised her head in surprise; a look of hope and strength slowly grew on her face.

“Your mild and gentle eyes proclaim
The loving heart with which you came–
A tender, helpless, tiny babe
With boundless gifts of grace.
Alleluia, alleluia, alleluia, alleluia.”

While the song continued, the older woman sitting alone felt a strong impulse to look at her phone. She pulled it out and then stared in near-disbelief at the number on the display. With tears blurring her vision, she quickly put on her coat and hurried toward the main door of the church. As she left, her face shone with a look of love almost matching the one on Mary’s face. The man who had passed out the bulletins stopped gathering them up, closed his eyes, and offered a prayer of thanksgiving. He knew, deep in his heart, that God was watching over him and would provide him with all he needed, every day.

“King of kings, most Holy one,
God the Son, eternal one,
You are my God—and helpless son–
High Ruler of mankind.
Alleluia, alleluia, alleluia, alleluia.”

The young man leaned over his folded hands, with a joyful smile on his face. He recognized that voice—he had heard it every Sunday, part of the choir but still distinct and set apart. That voice had touched his heart, but he couldn’t tell who the singer was. Now he knew. It was the young woman he had noticed at coffee hour. He had wanted to introduce himself to her but hadn’t quite found the right time or way. Now he looked up at the figure of the girl standing in front of the portrait of Mary and Jesus. It was like finding a long-lost friend. It had been difficult and discouraging for him, moving to an unfamiliar city without friends or family. He now felt very glad to be living here.

The lullaby ended. The last note shimmered in the air, and Rose looked into Mary’s eyes. It seemed to her that the painted smile deepened for an instant—and then the feeling of being uplifted slowly faded away and departed. Rose turned and started walking back to the pew where her coat was.

As she walked, she saw the remaining people quietly preparing to leave the church. After putting on her coat, she went to help the elderly man, who was having a little trouble bundling his wife up in her overcoat. They thanked her for her help and then all three walked to the door, Rose matching her pace to their slower steps. By the time they reached there, the church was empty. In the narthex, however, she saw the young man, who was obviously waiting for them.

“Do you have a car? It’s snowing outside,” he said to the older couple. When they answered in the negative, he asked, “May I call a taxi for you?” The couple thanked him, and the young man made the call. They waited inside until the taxi arrived, and then he and Rose helped the older couple down the church steps, which were now covered with snow. They assisted the man and his wife into the taxi, closed the door, and watched while the car pulled away from the curb and drove off.

The young man looked at Rose. “How are you getting home? Do you need a taxi, too?”

She answered, “Oh, no, I live only a couple of blocks from here. It’s just a short walk.”

“But it’s a cold and slippery walk,” he responded. “May I see you home? I wouldn’t want you to fall and hurt yourself.”

Rose looked at him for a moment, and then smiled. He was a stranger—but also not a stranger. She had seen him in church, often, and he had helped the old couple. She wasn’t quite sure why, but she trusted him. “Thank you. I live down that way,” she said, pointing. “Oh–my name is Rose.”

“I’m Joe,” the young man said, and he held out his elbow for her. She put her arm through it and they walked off together, slowly and carefully, avoiding icy patches and the fresh drifts of snow.


Note: “The Christ Child’s Lullaby” is an English translation of a much longer traditional Gaelic Christmas song, “Taladh Chriosda,” from the Outer Hebrides of Scotland.

(copyright 2018, Mary M. Isaacs)

Quote du jour

The reputations of the Lord's people should be very precious in our sight, and we should count it shame to help the devil to dishonour the Church and the name of the Lord. Some tongues need a bridle rather than a spur.

- Charles H. Spurgeon

Saturday, December 3, 2022

Best of the Web*

*…that I have seen all week!

(BTW, if you wonder where any of the links will take you, hover your cursor over the link.)


If You Really Wanted to Destroy the United States, Then . . .
DNC Moves to Align 2024 Primary Roadmap Using AME/BLM Model Constructed by Barack Obama Inc

Feel Good Friday
What's the Correct Way to Pronounce "Qatar"? Well, What's the Correct Way to Pronounce "France"?
Heroism Comes In All Shapes And Sizes
The Michael Brown Case, Update 25: Holy Social Justice Martyr
It’s Only Confederate Flags, They Said

Sunday Funnies
Sunday Funnies For 11-27-22

SpaceX Docks At Space Station

Larwyn’s Linx: Recording Shows Warnock Campaign Calling Out-of-State Residents for Votes
In the Mailbox: 11.29.22 (Afternoon Edition)
Larwyn’s Linx: The Bureaucracy’s Democrat Majority Made America a One-Party Government
In The Mailbox: 11.29.22 (Evening Edition)
Larwyn’s Linx: Guess Who's Trying To Cause Problems With The Railroad Tentative Agreement?
In The Mailbox: 11.30.22
Larwyn’s Linx: Washington Goes to War Against Twitter and Free Speech
In The Mailbox: 12.01.22
Larwyn’s Linx: VDH: If You Really Wanted To Destroy The US, Then…
In The Mailbox: 12.02.22

Quote du jour

Funny that House Majority Whip James Clyburn (D-SC), said: "This is what happens in a country that follows what happened in Germany in the early '30s", when his man Biden is a pompous, dictatorial dotard strutting about the stage demonizing large portions of Americans!

- Mike B

Thursday, December 1, 2022

Time Running Out to Get Your Comments In

...for Free Book Tuesday! I know we didn't set a formal deadline, but the post will probably fall off the front page on Friday, so let's set a formal dealine of midnight Friday PST, to get your entries in.
Bon Chance!

Quote du jour

"The more we value things outside our control, the less control we have."

- Marcus Aurelius