POINTS OF PONDERATION…..EPISODE 7.21 

A semi-regular attempt to address some of life’s minutiae that might otherwise be overlooked…..

What is the difference between apple juice & apple cider?? 

Apple cider is made from apples that are ground into a mash similar to applesauce. The mash is then wrapped in cloth and pressed into fresh juice, which does not go thru a filtration process. Conversely, apple juice is filtrated to remove pulp then pasteurized to extend shelf life. Vacuum sealing & additional filtering help it stay fresh even longer. Juice can sit unopened in your pantry for months, while cider is perishable and should be refrigerated. Unpasteurized cider will ferment and turn “hard” over time, which means it’ll get you snockered.

Can we all agree that the whole concept of a “YouTube Star” or, even worse, a “TikTok Star” is just dumb?? Look, I realize that I shouldn’t cast aspersions. My life has devolved into a meaningless waste of time and I haven’t accomplished jack squat. But in a vacuum it seems a bit much to call anyone a star whose only claim to notoriety comes from posting silly videos online. It is insulting to any athlete, actor, writer, musician, etc. who has combined natural talent, hard work, mastery of skill, and perhaps a few beneficial turns of fortune into a certain level of fame & prosperity. 

I’ve seen this pop up on my Facebook feed multiple times, and I am always fascinated by the ignorance displayed in the comments. For the record my choice is Starbucks because a) I’m not much of a coffee fiend anyway, b) there are local shops I prefer to support when I do drink coffee, & c) the coffee at Starbucks is overpriced & not that good. At any rate, I am surprised at the vitriol hurled at Chick-fil-A. Well okay…not that surprised by the vitriol, but bemused by how many people are so misinformed. The folks that run Chick-fil-A have publicly commented on their Christian beliefs, which is why their restaurant isn’t open on Sunday. They have also made monetary contributions to Christian charities. Unfortunately, since God & Christianity are increasingly despised in modern society Chick-fil-A’s support of such organizations has somehow evolved into the whole chain & all of its patrons being hateful, bigoted, & homophobic. The fact is that anyone who has ever eaten there knows the food is top notch, the service is excellent, & it is a first class (fast food) dining experience. No one asks about your sexual orientation when you walk in the door or pull up to the drive thru. I am quite positive that people of all creeds, persuasions, & worldviews eat there and probably even work there. There is no hate or bigotry displayed. People really need to jump off their self-righteous high horse and just enjoy some good food in the same way that more conservative folks like yours truly often choose to overlook an actor/singer/athlete’s questionable real life actions and simply be entertained.

I’m fascinated by the term “accidental overdose”. Don’t misunderstand…I have a certain level of empathy for anyone battling addiction. While I have never had to deal with alcoholism and drugs weren’t ever my thing (thankfully) I am obese and fight the urge to eat things that I shouldn’t every day (obviously I haven’t been too successful). Anyway, I find it a bit confusing when a person’s demise is determined to be caused by an “accidental” overdose. Okay, sure…perhaps they didn’t intend to kill themselves. But they knowingly injected/ingested some combination of heroin, pills, cocaine, etc. It was a conscious decision that person made. So why not simply state that it was an overdose?? 🤷🏻‍♂️

Until recently I was the administrator of my church’s Facebook page, and since I’ve had a surplus of free time for way too long (if you know you know) I usually posted a couple of things every day. I had an entire folder of memes & scripture saved that I added to constantly. I never would have run out of content. Then I posted the meme you see here. Anyone with a sense of humor and a passing familiarity with 80’s movies will get it, and it’s actually a subtle commentary on eternal life. Unfortunately someone didn’t see the humor and asked an intermediary to remove it. I have no issue with that second person. I’ve known her my entire life and she only did what was requested. But, the offended party (who I’ve never met) apparently also stated that the content is “questionable” & “that’s not what our church is about”. So this dude who’s been there for five minutes has the gall to lecture me, who grew up in that church and has been part of the community my entire life, about the church’s values. He also suggested to my friend that perhaps they could visit with me together. Now I’ve been out of commission, so to speak, for a year & a half and have had almost no personal interaction from anyone in the church, but all the sudden a freakin’ meme might necessitate some kind of intervention?? Nope. I’m smart enough to know when something is legit offensive and usually wise enough not to pass it on. I also believe that we’d all be better off if people learned to lighten up & laugh a little. Churches especially would benefit from that lesson, because while faith is to be taken quite seriously and the goal is to example Christ, humbly serve the community, and ultimately spend eternity in Heaven with Our Father, there’s no reason why we should be perpetually miserable in the process. 

2013 Pigskin Picks of Profundity…..Week 4

cfYou live by the sword you die by the sword. When I began doing this last year I made the decision to oddsutilize point spreads, not for gambling purposes but because it adds a layer of strategery that increases the challenge. Simply choosing a winner means one has a 50/50 shot at being right. I am not good enough at math to figure out how the point spread decreases those odds…I just know it does. At any rate, the points really bit us in the behind last week. Both Alabama and the Kansas City Chiefs won as Zach & I predicted…but ‘Bama won by 7 in a game with an 8 point spread and the Chiefs beat the Dallas Cowboys by only 1 point so they didn’t cover the 2.5 point spread. Ouch…two tough losses. To make matters worse the Indianapolis Colts and Detroit Lions let us down. The only bright spot in a 1-4 week for both of us was the Denver Broncos. So for the season it looks like this:

Your Humble Potentate of Profundity  =  7-8

Zach  =  6-9

We’re flipping the script this week, leaning on more college games and picking only one NFL contest. None of the college games are the kind of big time clashes between highly ranked teams that make guys like ESPN’s Kirk Herbstreit or CBS’s Tim Brando wet themselves, but I find them each compelling for one reason or another.

 

 

Boise St.                     at        Fresno St. (-3)

In my pre-season Top 25 I ranked Fresno #18 and did not rank Boise at all. So far I’m looking good, but that could all change fresnopending the outcome of this game. The Bulldogs are 2-0 and the only thing that’s even challenged them thus far is Mother Nature (last week’s game at Colorado was postponed due to flooding). Conversely, the Broncos come into this week having split their first two games. I have to stick with my pre-season vibes and go with Fresno to take this one. Zach likes that Fresn’s offense seems to be clicking on all cylinders and believes they’ll cover the points despite a strong effort from Boise.

My Pick          Fresno St.                 

Z’s Pick           Fresno St.

 

Western Michigan                at        Iowa (-17)

Zach & I both participate in a weekly online pick ‘em sponsored here locally in northcentral WV (high school, college, & pro iowagames are all included), and each week the Iowa game has been on there. I couldn’t fathom why we kept picking the Iowa game until I remembered that a young man from one of the local high schools is now a kicker for the Hawkeyes. What intrigues me about this game is the huge spread. Western Michigan has gotten off to a bad 0-3 start, although to be fair they have played two Top 25 Big Ten teams (Michigan St. & Northwestern). Meanwhile, Iowa lost a close opener to Northern Illinois but now stands at 2-1. I know absolutely nothing about either of these teams so I am just going to wuss out and go with the oddsmakers. Zach graduated from the aforementioned high school that Iowa’s kicker came from so despite being a bit concerned with the points he’s making the homer pick.

My Pick          Iowa

Z’s Pick           Iowa

 

Arizona St.                 at        Stanford (-7.5)

photo.stanfordtreeChristmas came early last week for Arizona St. when extraordinary incompetence by the officials allowed the asuSun Devils to steal a win, which took their record to 2-0. Stanford is 2-0 and ranked in the Top 5, but they really haven’t played anybody. At first glance the points look intriguing, but I don’t think Stanford will have any problem covering en route to a fairly stress-free victory. Zach has been anticipating this game and believes that Arizona St. is a legitimately good team despite last week’s tainted victory. He’s predicting the upset.

My Pick          Stanford

Z’s Pick           Arizona St.

 

Kansas St.      at        Texas (-5)

In my pre-season Top 25 I ranked the Longhorns #4 and predicted that they “are finally primed to re-ascend to the top of The TEXAS LONGHORNS.1271817676Big 12 and possibly contend for a national championship.” It turns out that that assessment may have been…slightly optimistic. Texas has begun the season 1-2 and a lot of folks aren’t too happy about it. Kansas St. is 2-1, but their schedule thus far has been less than compelling and they lost to a 1-AA team to open the season. The vibes are telling me that the heat has been turned up in Austin to a sufficient enough level that the Longhorns won’t let this one slip thru their fingers. Zach isn’t excited at all about this game and would actually prefer to watch paint dry. However, even though he’s convinced that this will be a boring game he agrees that Texas will bounce back and get the win.

My Pick          Texas

Z’s Pick           Texas

 

Kansas City                at        Philadelphia (-3.5)

The lone NFL game on the docket is significant because it marks Chiefs’ coach Andy Reid’s return to The City of Brotherly Lovekc-chiefs-logo to face the team that he coached for 14 years…until they fired him on New Year’s Eve. Kansas City has looked impressive thus far in going 2-0, and my prediction of a 9-7 record with a playoff appearance is looking prescient. Everyone is all aflutter about the magical things new coach Chip Kelly has been doing with the Eagles’ offense, but it has become apparent that defense is an issue. Until Philly gets those problems fixed and stops giving up 30 points per game they’ll be easy pickins for most NFL teams. Zach is all in on the Chiefs and thinks highly of quarterback Alex Smith.

My Pick          Kansas City               

Z’s Pick           Kansas City

Random Thoughts 3

The defection of Senator Arlen Specter to the Democrat Party is much ado about nothing. The man has never been a conservative…..he just finally decided to make it official.

 

I find it amusing when I belch and my puppy sticks his nose up to my mouth to sniff.

 

Tony Bennett is one of the greatest singers of all time, but he really needs to keep his political opinions to himself, lest he come across as a senile old man with a sub-Forrest Gump IQ.

 

I recently gave pineapple on my pizza a whirl. It’s okay.

 

So for the cost of a cup of coffee one can help build water wells and such in some kids Third World neighborhood. How about this…. just send the kid a plane ticket to get him/her out of that rat infested nation and into civilization.

 

RIP Bea Arthur, Jack Kemp, & Danny Gans

 

Jeff Zeleny, a reporter from the New York Times, should be fired immediately. He needs to be working in a Pottery Barn or Starbucks. If you have no idea what I mean Google the name or look for it on YouTube. No wonder newspapers are becoming obsolete.

 

Personally, I’m not losing any sleep over this swine flu thing.