Thursday, June 16, 2016

"Bureaucracy gives birth to itself and then expects maternity benefits." ~ Dale Dauten, Author, professional speaker and management coach

Here we go again on this Thursday, June 16, 2016. Good morning and welcome to my little time of sharing how things are moving on down the road for me. You don't hear it very often but I do occasionally hear someone say when asked how things are going: Swimmingly. It actually has the meaning of things going well, smoothly, easily, effortlessly, like clockwork, without a hitch, or as planned. The word came about supposedly because swimming in water is thought of as being smooth and easy as compared to one plodding their way through life. Here's one of the early uses in print from 1824: "The interview went off very swimmingly." I may have used it a time or two, probably just to be ornery. I've heard that non-swimmers are not enamored with the reference. There's plenty of idioms that contribute to communication that many do not personally connect to. I may not be a poker player but I do know what it means to lay my cards on the table. My wife tells me that on some days my approach to jumping from one subject to another is somewhat dizzying. I suppose that makes it difficult for her to have a swimmingly experience when trying to read through my blog. I could say that I would try to do better but I'm not sure if I could make that work for me. Changing horses in the middle of the stream, many of you will be glad to know that I did receive my cheap knock off of a real individual serve coffee maker. As of 4:53 a.m. yesterday, I perked up my first cup. I now need to get me a 'back in business' sign.

When I was at the federal courthouse the other day, we prospective jurors watched a 30-minute video on the history and importance of the jury system in our nation. The video was hosted by Chief Justice of the Supreme Court, John Roberts. Former Associate Justice Sandra Day O'Connor and sitting Associate Justice Alito also were featured in the video. It was somewhat of an overkill but the main message is how the jury system reflects the bedrock of our approach to meting out justice. Flawed? Yes. Because people are flawed. However, it is considered to be the bedrock of how our democracy works. The film was a big build up for those of us who had honored our call to come and be considered as a juror. We are important. The system doesn't work without us. I get that. I too believe in our system. However, when one is engaged with our system and all of its obvious layers of bureaucracy and cost it can be a little hard to stomach. Maybe this will be mostly done by robots in the future. Wait a minute. It more or less seemed to be already done by robots, but, I don't doubt that is due in large part to the repetitive day in and day out of them doing the same things as executed by the appointed leader, their lieutenant, and the 2nd, 3rd, and 4th lieutenants. We do our best in our nation to assure unbiased justice but a trip to the courthouse tells us that it certainly isn't cheap. Sorry. I'm tenured. Tenured taxpayer. I notice these things.

Our Madi trying on hats last week during an outing to New Orleans.
Our little Great Grand Madi fell last Tuesday on the playground and broke her arm. It was a bad break. She was transported to Texas Children's where they did surgery last night to repair the damage. We kept up with her progress as best we could via texting and cell phone calls. (Texting for those who have the smart phones, and calls for me, the one with the dumb flip phone.) I ask that you say a prayer for her and those attending to her needs. I suppose the older we get it is the more helpless that we feel when something like this happens. Her granddad, our eldest, said it is at times like this that one is so thankful for the outstanding services available at the Houston Medical Center. We had our fair share of casts and stitches for the boys as they grew up. I think I handled it better back then. Old people. They seem stuck in sentimentality mode. I'm speaking hypothetically, of course. I remember what Paw Paw Mac would say, "You need to get a grip, son." And, that I do. That I do. As you can tell, I am still wound up pretty tight. Lots of stuff flying around. It's got my gray cells flying at warp speed. I'll see if I can slow them down long enough to harvest something for our next visit. Until then, I hope you and yours will have a most wonderful day and that God will add His blessings to it. Amen. ....More later.

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