I Meet Our New Justice . . . He Likes Beer

I had no plans for watching the Kavanaugh hearing today before the Senate Judiciary Committee. I had heard about all I needed to know about the president’t nominee for the Supreme Court. And somehow I knew I was going to feel a little dirtier if I spent a day watching the U.S. Senate at work.

But I turned it on early, just after Dr. Christine Blasey Ford had been sworn in. Her testimony was riveting as the Republican majority sat off to the side and had a local government sex crimes prosecutor ask all the questions. They apparently didn’t want to risk seeing themselves later in their electoral opponents’ campaign commercials questioning Dr. Ford. They didn’t want to make it too easy for to show them as what they are: white male Republicans with no aptitude for empathy.

I decided to continue watching after lunch and saw our future justice performing most un-judicially for the next three hours. He was angry. He was aggressive. He was rude. He interrupted U.S. Senators. He cried. He told touching stories about his family. He blamed everyone else and took no responsibility for anything. He congratulated himself at every opportunity on how great he is. He had finally mastered the skills of a reality television star. He conducted himself a lot like his new role model, Donald J. Trump.

So much for judicial temperament.

Good luck, America.

Methodists: Could We Just Get on with the Great Commission?

The United Methodist Church I attend has joined the discussion of the issue that the denomination has battled over since 1972 when the General Conference of the church decided that homosexuality was “incompatible with Christian teaching.” You know, like war and torture. Almost fifty years later we are still engaged in the battle.

As I listened to the discussion at Chapelwood last Sunday I couldn’t help but think of the deal with the devil our Founders made in drafting the United States Constitution: accepting slavery as the price of unification. Unification was ultimately achieved with terrible loss of life. And we have yet to achieve full freedom and participation for the descendants of the people who were brought here and who worked against their will for the enrichment of the European immigrants. Continue reading “Methodists: Could We Just Get on with the Great Commission?”

Center Stages Opens “Deathtrap”

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Craig Fritz, Devon J. Smith and Roxanne Strobel talk about the young playwright’s (Smith’s) first try at a murder mystery script on the set courtesy of Keith Plowman.

The Brazosport Center Stages production of Ira Levin’s “Deathtrap” opened Friday night in the Dow Arena Theater.  Director Susan Moss and her company and crew played all the plot twists with skill and plenty of dry humor for an appreciative opening night crowd. The veteran cast of Craig Fritz, Roxanne Strobel, Devon Smith, Becky Gore LaRoche, and Phil Partridge communicated an intricate plot and a word heavy script with clarity and even physical dexterity when it was called for. And that was often.

No snoring at this play, gentlemen. You will be wide awake waiting to see who dies next and to see if they stay dead. Is that a plot spoiler? I don’t think so. But maybe it’s a clue that this one is not to be taken too seriously. Just enjoy the fine acting of some community theater pros who just keep on doing it for free. And what a gift it is.

You will also see a beautifully designed and executed set (thank you, Keith Plowman, for the design), period perfect costumes by Tina Gray, and combat (!) scenes choreographed by Wes Copeland. And the light! Near perfection by Lisa Chapa. Give her a budget and a few new instruments and it would be perfect. And there were also lots of eerie sound courtesy of Barry Dunn. And the script calls for props galore, always a challenge for a small community theater. And resourceful Callie Ayers is always up to the job.

This is theater for fun. Come out and enjoy a brutally funny murder mystery tonight. It runs through next weekend, Sept. 16. Tickets and reservations are available at The Center ticketing web site.

Blessed are the Teachers | thewriterjean

A salute to teachers from our Lake Jackson friend, Jean Ciampi (although she has moved from Lake Jackson and is now moving again to Michigan). She IS thewriterjean. 

School is back in session. Teachers, unsung warriors that they are, have once again manned the battle lines to fight for the ongoing education of the next generation. Truly there is no level of sainthood great enough to crown the heads of these bold, brave souls who selflessly walk into the classrooms of darkness and…
— Read on thewriterjean.wordpress.com/2018/09/03/blessed-are-the-teachers/