Archive for July 5, 2007

The Pastoral Hug

Posted: July 5, 2007 in Personal Reflections

I’m not much of a “touchy-feely” kind of guy.¬† I’m not much of a “hugger.”¬† I don’t mind hugging¬†the ladies who are in their¬†senior years (not high school…I mean like senior citizens…and no offense if I’ve hugged you and you don’t fit into that¬†category), but in the main…I¬†just don’t hug.¬† It is probably¬†the cold upbringing I had where we grew up in a non-touchy-feely home devoid of love and affection (that’s a joke…my family reads the blog).

As a¬†Pastor, I sometimes feel insecure about the lack of hugs I extend to¬†others.¬† I really like others.¬† Maybe I should hug more often?¬† Maybe I would be a better pastor if I give out more hugs?¬†¬†But, what do you do with the guys?¬† Do I really want to hug guys?¬† No…not really.¬† And if I don’t hug guys and only hug their wives, is that weird?¬† Seems wierd.¬† I once hug a¬†Bosnian couple we were helping move into the area.¬† They were Muslims.¬† I gave him a hug.¬† Then I gave his wife a hug (a very appropriate American hug).¬†¬†The gasp I heard from her family and friends let me know that in their culture, men don’t¬†hug women.¬† Note to self…don’t hug a married muslim woman…or any muslim woman for that matter (unless she is really cute…and I don’t mind being BEHEADED!).¬† So…the non-hugging approach has just been easier.

Well…not anymore!!!!! ¬†Thanks to this instructional video, I’m about to have a¬†HUGFEST¬†galore!¬† Not only can I hug on the ladies (I know you all have been waiting) … I now have some clear guidelines on how to hug the men!¬† So, especially if you are a male friend of mine…watch this instructional video, and prepare to be hugged!

You have to check out Mark Mallory, the Mayor of Cincinnati who threw out the first pitch on opening day.  Where in the world is that ball going?!

¬†Who doesn’t have a day that feels like this?

O.K…I have some¬†complaints¬†about the South Bend government.¬†

I have a few questions to ask and would like for my fellow South Siders to weigh in.¬† First, I love new businesses coming to the South Side.¬† I’m an avid reader of the South Bend Tribune’s Heidi Prescott¬† and her Market Basket (on Fridays and Sundays) to see if anything new is coming to the South Side of South Bend in regards to business, retail, RESTAURANTS…CRISPY KREME…OLIVE GARDEN…OUTBACK…SOMETHING ORIGINAL!!!¬† And, I love the South Side.¬† I have anxiously awaited the construction of Erskine Village, the stores coming to Erskine Commons, the new Wal-Mart, Lowe’s, etc.¬† But here are my questions:

  1. Why would you wait until a new Wal-Mart and Lowe’s opens up (with a Chick-fil-A & Texas Roadhouse to follow) and then decide to tear up the roads for construction?¬† Do you know how irritating Ireland and Michigan St. are?¬† There are new businesses that just opened up and now I avoid the area like¬†a plague because it is so congested.¬† Did the city not know new businesses were coming?¬† Could they not have planned the end of the road construction to coincide with the opening of new businesses?
  2. Has anyone seen the new J.R. Fox Jewelry store opening on Miami and Ireland? It is a mansion on the very corner of the street…seriously…there couldn’t be more than ten yards of frontage!¬† The design is so large it totally obscures your view of the Broadmore Plaza (something I would be upset about if I were a tenant in that plaza) from Miami St. and the new Erskine Village from the north corner of the intersection.¬† Why is it right on the corner?¬† Are they going to have drive thru service?¬† Why is it so large?¬† Does J.R. Fox get that much business on the South Side?¬† Is someone going to live there?¬† When I see zoning hassles in so many other better ventures I can’t help but wonder how the building design for this fiasco got approved.¬† Having said that, does anyone remember the transmission shop that used to be on that corner?¬† So, my complaint must be tempered.
  3. Again, I’m glad to get more business….but the majority seem¬†to be little¬†specialty shops that are targeted to a very narrow demographic of consumer.¬† How many times is someone going to frequent Aspen Dental?¬† How many specialty paint stores do we need?¬† How many pedicure shops do we need?¬†

¬†O.K…. there is my city complaint for the day.

Elect Sam Barrington for mayor of South Bend (but really I’ll just concentrate on the South Side…oh no, what if I really do run someday and they find this post…I’ve just ruined my chances of election…)

Here are a list of things I learned, or were reminded of, on this 4th of July:

  • My body is easily confused…even more so when it has a day off in the middle of the week (what was up with the alarm clock this morning?).
  • The neighbor on the next block can put together a firework’s show to revival anything you would see at Coveleski Stadium…or the National Mall in D.C. – seriously…he must have spent thousands.
  • I love Cracker Barrell coffee.¬† It could be my favorite.
  • We changed the cat’s food (just slightly).¬† They are now on a hunger strike going into their second day.¬† I’m sort of routing for the little guys.¬† How long can cats fast?
  • If you have a five year old girl, she may not like the sound of fireworks.
  • After 11:00 p.m., I don’t like the sound of fireworks.
  • Smores are very messy…but goooooodddd!
  • I can eat a lot of meat…like massive hamburgers (a couple of them with several slices of cheese)¬†followed by a bratwurst.¬† I have skills.
  • I am capable of watching hours of home decorating shows and documentaries on the Revolutionary War.
  • South Bend, if the Silverhawks are not in town, offers virtually no fireworks show¬†on the 4th.
  • If you live on a street with a lot of little girls under the age of 12 – drama WILL exist.
  • The police work on the 4th – there were some serious arrests made on Donmoyer Ave. and Michigan St. as well as in the Martin’s on Ireland Rd. (at Martins the employees tackled two guys!!!)
  • My wife is pretty good at removing wallpaper in a kitchen (while her husband watches home decorating shows in the next room).
  • Cheese sticks could be one of the greatest inventions.
  • I’m glad we are independent of England…and everyone else for that matter.
  • I think Roseland should declare it’s independence from the town council.
  • If the gym is closed for a holiday, I feel less guilty.