Author: Michael

The Way We Were

The Way We Were

I can’t say that I feel really old or anything but as a guy in my late 30’s I often wonder where the time has gone. I sometimes find myself thinking about things in my past when I was a kid, and sometimes I really have to squeeze my brain to get those memories to come back out. I think that is an example of what happens as we get older.

We begin to forget the fine details of the things in our past and we may even add things into the reality of those situations to make up for the lack of remembering everything. In a way this is a bit sad. I like to think that I will always be able to hold onto those memories in my mind of the good times when I was much younger, but I don’t know if that is even possible.

Since I noticed this strange phenomenon, I decided to start writing my memories down. I figure that in 40 years when I can’t even remember my own name I will be able to go back and read over my life history and maybe the written words will spark that part of my brain that remembers pieces and parts of my past.

It seems like the only way to keep the memories alive and because of that, I am going to do my best to get it all down before it becomes so unclear that I wouldn’t know if I was just making things up.

Getting older is scary to me sometimes. I still feel like a kid most of the time but every now and then the years of my life rear its ugly head in the form of back pain or memory loss and it really reminds me how precious our time here really is. We need to take advantage of every day we have and we need to make as many new memories as possible so that we have something to think about when we are old and unable to make many more memories.

I have heard it said that life is just a ball of memories and I suppose that is true. We do things in our lives and then we move to the next adventure forgetting about the last one until we decide to go back and think about it. We file everything away in our brain thinking that it will always be there.

How many of you are capable of remembering every detail of your childhood? If you can and you are my age or older, I commend you on your remarkable abilities. If not, you are much like me and for that reason; maybe you should start writing down your memories too.

I would also say that for those of you that are able to remember your past, you should think about writing it all down as well. You never know when you will start losing those pieces and parts of those times gone by and since they are fresh in your memory banks, it would be a great idea to get them down on paper.

Think about how interesting your life would be to read about. Think about your children and grandchildren and how interesting it would be for them to have a document that contained your own memories of your own life.

I personally wish my grandparents and great grandparents would have done that. It would be so interesting to me to be able to read about what they did and what they felt back when they were living life to the fullest.

So this is the time my friends, it is time to get those memories down and make sure that you have a way of remembering those things when your memory banks no longer can. You will not only be doing yourself a favor, you will be giving the family something to cherish. In a way, you will live forever in the words you write and the memories of your incredible life.…

Can A Pro-Life Evangelical Christian Vote For A Pro-Choice Candidate?

Can A Pro-Life Evangelical Christian Vote For A Pro-Choice Candidate?

In this homework assignment I will answer the question: Can a pro-life Christian vote for a pro-choice candidate? This is a very broad question without a direct answer. In my opinion, this could depend on several different factors.

As an evangelical Christian myself it is easy just to say that I can’t vote for someone who is pro-choice, but sometimes you have to look other things as well. There is no outright direct answer to this question, but I will explore some issues this questions involves.

One thing that can make this question difficult to answer is to see what office this candidate is running for. For instance, let’s use the President of the United States as an example. George W. Bush, our current president, is pro-life, but Roe v. Wade has not been overturned when he was in office.

Why? He has no direct control over that, the Supreme Court does. Once appointed, Supreme Court justices stay on for life until they die or resign. Only in the case that this happen can a sitting president appoint a new justice. This is where it would be important to have a pro-life president. Now let’s use a candidate running for a state-level office, such as a governor.

This would be more important because they have more direct control over the issue of abortion in their state. A candidate such as a state senator is important because their vote counts before Congress, and, if they are pro-life, can help the Senate pass a bill which would limit or eliminate abortion.

To answer this question with an outright yes or no, for me, is not possible. Before God I cannot lie and say no and list reasons why. But for the purposes of this assignment (article), I have to take a position. I will give reasons why I can’t vote for a pro-choice candidate, but please keep in mind I will only defend this side of the issue.

The first reason why I can’t vote for a pro-choice candidate is because I believe the developing organism inside a mother’s womb is a human. In the book of Psalms 139 David goes into great detail about how precious human life is while being developed inside the womb. I believe that life begins at conception, and killing an unborn human is murder. I can’t vote for someone who has no problem with killing innocent life.

Some politicians believe they can justify abortion if the victim was raped, incest, or the health of the mother. This leads to the second reason why I can’t vote for a pro-choice candidate, because I believe abortion is wrong in this case as well, except for the health of the mother. The person who raped the victim should be punished to the fullest extent of the law and the victim should receive help during her difficulties but it doesn’t justify killing the baby to relieve pain.

The next issue I will bring up is the morality of abortion. I have already stated that I believe that abortion is immoral. I also believe that would affect how decisions are made in office. In other words, I would be concerned if a pro-choice politician took office because if he thinks abortion is morally correct, I would be concerned what kind of action he takes when there’s not a lot of time or passing a new law.

The fourth issue I would bring up is a pro-choice candidate’s religious beliefs. Can a true born again Christian be pro-choice? In other words, would a Christian have problems with murdering innocent life and be perfectly fine with that?

I would not think so. I’m not saying that he’s not a Christian but I don’t think he could carry a true Christian worldview and ethics. This would make me look further into the candidate’s beliefs, and usually, not always, will find other problems with his worldview that could affect his judgment in office.

Finally, the last issue I will bring up is equality. Is there a difference between an human being an adult, a toddler, or an embryo? Is it still a human no matter what stage of life it is in? I believe it is a human no matter what stage of life it is in.

I also consider babies already having something go wrong or they have some disease or syndrome that would affect who they become once they are born. I think this is a terrible way to justify the right to have an abortion. I believe that no matter what health the baby is in that an abortion is wrong, unless it threatens the mother’s health.

For these reasons, I find it very difficult to vote for a candidate who is pro-choice. I can not say that I will never vote for a candidate who is pro-choice, but a Christian should use careful judgment when going to the polls and voting for a candidate.

I believe that abortion is murder, and wrong in every case unless the mother’s life is in danger. I also believe that a pro-choice candidate’s mentality is also affected by this belief. I believe Christians should look at the pro-life candidate’s beliefs first before looking at a pro-choice candidate’s beliefs before even considering to vote.…

“Bad” Memories Can Rob Your Happiness

“Bad” Memories Can Rob Your Happiness

Bad memories can rob you of your good memories and destroy your happiness, causing mental issues. Do not allow bad memories to destroy your life toss them to the wind and get on with your life. You’re the keeper of your mental faculties, don’t allow things that happened in your past to gobble up decision making abilities and your ability to enjoy good things and continue to love and care for others.

Step back and take time to study the overall memory and allow yourself to study the total concept as to who performed the act causing you to have the memory. Allow yourself to re-live the memory as often as is necessary so you can release it from your mind and accept it as a bad memory caused by someone other than yourself and you’re ready to move on in your life.

Re-living the memory as often as possible until you can get over it. Each time you visit this memory…remember, it was you who did nothing to cause the memory, and if you where involved, you have changed your way of life and will never go back to the situation again. Do not allow bad memories to destroy and rob your life of other good memories and happiness. We’re all human and bad memories occur in every ones life.

Do not ever allow yourself to feel “pity” but think positive and know that you’re not going to allow these bad memories to destroy your life. There’s probably not a person on this earth who has not felt shame, anger, and depression regarding something that happen in their life.

Re-hashing bad memories repeatedly with other people…you’re looking for pity and keeping the wound open to cause the memories to fester over and over again. This keeps the mind remembering the pain and sadness and it automatically re-opens the wound again and again.

Do not deny these bad memories ever happened but admit it to yourself because you know it did…accepted it and move on. Re-living these memories can consume your mind and keep you an unhappy person to live with or to enjoy. If a particular person caused these memories, forgive them, realize “we’re” human and “we” have all caused others some sort of bad memory in our life.

We may ask ourselves…why do we always remember the “bad memories”? Listen up people, it’s because it affected our lives and it brought pain and suffering to us, but remember, “we” control our thoughts and our minds and “we” can turn those bad memories to good ones.…

Life As A Freelance Writer

Life As A Freelance Writer

Life as a freelance writer can be very unpredictable.

Some days I’m writing copy for clients who need web content. Other days I’m interviewing an up-and-coming YouTube star for an article I’m writing for Yahoo. I’ve always loved writing so pursuing a career as a writer was natural for me. The first article that I ever published was at the local fair where I wrote about how I met President Clinton when I was 10-years-old. I can still remember receiving a ribbon for my entry.

I kept up with the writing through High School and had my first monthly column during my gap year abroad in Israel. My Dad was the editor of our synagogue’s newsletter so I pitched the idea to him. He liked it and I began writing about my experiences for the congregation back home. When I returned, people told me how much they enjoyed my articles. This helped me realize that I was on the right track and enrolled myself in community college and took my first journalism course. I was writing for the college newspaper within a week.

This continued through college after transferring to Central Washington University to complete my BA in Journalism. During my final year at Central, I began my freelance career. It started slow enough but once I got the hang of things, I started to see my articles published at various websites across the web. I still didn’t feel like a real writer yet so when I moved to Hawaii to work on my MA in Communication at Hawaii Pacific University, I got myself in contact with a news website called Civil Beat and interned with them for three months.

The practical experience I gained there improved my writing greatly so I pushed myself to write more. The amount of articles I’ve had published has skyrocketed since school now that I’m able to fully devote myself to writing. One of my favorite articles to write was a guest blog post about my trip to Australia last May for the travel website A Dangerous Business.

There are some weeks where I make no money while there are others that I am swimming in money. It’s taken some time to recognize which clients pay well and which don’t but now that I’ve gotten the hang of it, I’m starting to see things work out.

That being said, I’m still living with my parents until I can build up my bank account to buy myself a car and eventually relocate once I have the financial backing to do so without having to worry about ending up on the street after a month.

Writing is my passion and even though it takes a lot of effort to succeed as a freelance writer, I know that it’s what I really want to do with my life. There are many who tell me that I’ll never make it as a writer despite never reading any of my works. Naysayers who don’t understand what it’s like to be a writer will never appreciate the kind of work it takes to succeed in this career.

Don’t let people who don’t understand what it means to be a writer stop you from following your dreams. They are just jealous that you have figured out how to follow your passions without being held back by the normal rules of society that state that one has to have a boss in order to make money.

I am my own boss and have no problem working directly with clients; thank you kindly.…

Ten ATM Kiosk Personal Safety Tips

Ten ATM Kiosk Personal Safety Tips

Ten Important Personal Safety Tips for Using ATM Kiosks Worldwide

Having traveled worldwide for over 25 years the use of an Automated Teller Machine, a.k.a. an ATM Kiosk is almost second nature to me. Even after this long period of usage it is imperative that the same personal safety tips are followed every time I go to an ATM kiosk. These are my ATM kiosk personal safety tips based on those many years of successful usage of this very convenient banking technology.

ATM Card Access

NEVER hand your credit card, or debit card, to anyone else. This includes members of your family. If something serious happens anyone you identify as having access to either your card or the PIN number to the card falls under suspicion.

Credit or Debit Card PIN Access

NEVER give your pin to anyone else. For obvious reasons this should never be done. Always remember not even bank employees or ATM Kiosk service personnel have any need to know your PIN numbers.

ATM Kiosk Security

Do not let that you do not know personally inside the ATM kiosk during your transactions. If possible use ATM kiosks that are separate, enclosed, well lit with only one person kiosk transaction areas.

ATM Kiosk Privacy

Ensure no one watches while you enter your PIN. This is just part of common sense and an important part of your personal safety tips when using any ATM kiosk.

ATM Locations Selection Criteria

Choose to use ATM kiosks that are located in crowded areas, preferably with some sort of security guard in place. ATM locations inside banks premises are safest. Those located physically outside banks are no safer than any other of thousands of outside ATM locations world wide. Develop and practice the same set of personal safety tips every time you visit any ATM kiosk location worldwide.

ATM Kiosk Transaction Problems Procedure

If you have transaction problems do not accept advice from strangers. Ask security personnel for help or call the hotline. As soon as possible, but deliberately, move away from that ATM Kiosk, ensuring you have all your personal possessions, including the ATM card.

Know Your Bank ATM Hot-line Number

Make sure, before entering any ATM kiosk location, you have, easily accessible, the bank hotline number for use at the ATM kiosk in case of processing problems.

ATM Debit or Credit Card Scam Protection

Never believe any call, letter or person telling you that you have won a prize and all you need to do to collect is to transfer money from an ATM machine to collect your prize.

Be alert, be aware at all times while using the ATM

Especially be aware at times when you are in a rush or in a hurry to get to someplace else after using the ATM. Develop a procedure for accessing and replacing your ATM card into the same purse or wallet every time to help prevent leaving your card.…

Colt 1911 Commander, God Created All Men, But Sam Colt Made Them Equal

Colt 1911 Commander, God Created All Men, But Sam Colt Made Them Equal

OK I have been a Glock guy for some time now. I have a concealed carry permit for my state and am licensed to carry in other states as well and have carried a Glock 17. I own a 1911 by American Tactical imports though and found it to be a very good and reliable gun. Well my wife knew I really liked 1911 guns and decided when we had some extra money that she wanted to buy me a Colt. I was not wild about spending almost $1,000 for a gun, but when my wife makes up her mind it’s made unless I really assert myself. Since I kind of wanted the gun I gave her this win.

The Colt 1911 Commander is built like a tank. They make these in the United States in Connecticut. (talk about ironic with the gun laws there). It is made with a quality carbon steel metal frame and slide and blued metal finish. The barrel is 4.25 inches for increased accuracy with front and rear dovetail three dot sights. it also has a combat hammer and standard trigger. The Colt Commander also features walnut wood grips. It has a standard capacity of 7 rounds + 1 in the chamber, but you can use many extended magazines.

It comes with a case and two 7 round magazines. It will run you about $550 Online and $650 in store. It comes with a limited lifetime warranty. This sounds tricky, but unless you attempt to customize the gun in some way that can’t be easily removed ( like switching out the sights compared to changing the grips) they are known for standing behind their products.

I was very impressed at the range with the Colt 1911 Commander. I found the trigger pull to be very crisp and clean, It was not overly heavy as a couple 1911 pistols I have encountered lately. I found it to shoot very accurately even with a double tap. This is in large part due to the weight. I personally think it has less recoil than my Glock 17.

It is relatively slim and could be carried with an in the waist band for a concealed carry weapon or easily tucked under a jacket or vest. another great thing about the Colt Commander compared to other 1911 pistols is how it handles hollow point ammunition. 1911 pistols were not meant to shoot hollow point ammo but ball ammo or full metal jacket ( FMJ), I got all kinds of jams with Rock Island and ATI 1911 pistols with most hollow points, but the Colt Commander handles everything fine.

Even the cheap Wal-Mart Winchester White Box hollow points. I personally carry Hornady Critical Defense in mine, but that is my personal preference. The only drawback I have found is one of the grips seems to have the screw loosen every 100 or so rounds, but that is easily fixed with some glue.

Overall I will say that Colt has made a really nice gun that is reasonably priced for the quality. IT shoots really well and I have not seen one malfunction yet. There are many people who customize their 1911 pistols with various things from trigger jobs to changing out the main spring housing. I think the gun is really good as is.

I will say I do like the main spring housing in my ATI 1911 a little better than the colt but overall I can deal with it. I would have rather had night sights but that is not a big deal either.

These are not as easy to get with the concern over the gun grabbing agenda of the administration of Barack Hussein Obama, but you can still find them.…

The Agnostic Delusion

The Agnostic Delusion

Richard Dawkins’ recent book The God Delusion has made atheism big news for the time being. Dawkins fails to realize that the belief in no God contains the same amount of delusion. Belief implies delusion, as the act of believing establishes a filter on what information will enter our minds.

For example, in 1950 at a church in Nebraska, where choir practice was held every Wednesday night at 7:30, a gas leak caused the church to explode at 7:35. Fortunately, all fifteen members of the choir happened to arrive late to practice that night, each for a different reason. Monotheists may interpret this as a “miracle” or an “act of God.” Atheists might say “sheer luck” or “mere coincidence.” Can we call one group more correct than the other?

Agnosticism would call both groups equally correct. The agnostic recognizes that both groups have delusions. Monotheists have a “God delusion”, and atheists have a “no God delusion.” More importantly, agnostics recognize their own delusions as well. Agnosticism allows people to examine their own biases and view any issue from many differing perspectives.

It does not matter whether the issue at hand has a religious nature. Everything seems to make more sense from an agnostic perspective. Instead of arguing over whether something “is true” or “is false,” the agnostic notices that things may seem true in some way and false in another way. Wasting less time squabbling over such petty matters leaves agnostics with more time and energy to focus into more productive areas.

Agnostics find themselves debating instead of arguing. Respect and reason take precedence over emotional game playing. The agnostic cannot lose a debate, or win one for that matter. It does not matter whether you win or lose, but how you express your ideas and opinions.

An agnostic can start a conversation with anyone and learn something from it. Varying cultural and religious backgrounds no longer seem like barriers, but unique learning opportunities. Even people who don’t speak the same language can enjoy each other’s company with a healthy dose of agnosticism.

So, next time you hear someone denounce something as a delusion, ask yourself if that person lives in a delusion himself. More so, ask yourself if you live in a delusion. The answer may give you a pleasant surprise.…