Sometimes.

A while back the Daily Prompt on WordPress asked me if there was something in my collection that I would like to read again. At the time I didn’t respond to the prompt. Sometimes I find it hard to make choices. That was one of those times.

Then last week I recalled a book that left a lasting impact on me. Whenever I hear about kidnappings and hostages I think of a man called Brian Keenan. A Belfast man who went to Beirut for a change of scenery, in 1985. Bad decision. He was kidnapped and held hostage for four and a half years! That’s a long time. Most of that time in darkened solitary confinement, or what the prison movies call The hole.

It’s not a book about politics. It is a testimony to willpower. In the book, the reader is not only in the cell, the reader is allowed inside his head. My brief review doesn’t do justice to this book, but in this age with the ‘Power of positive thoughts’ being all the rage, Brian Keenan’s book ‘An evil cradling’ blows everything else away when it comes to coping with circumstances. He has walked the walk, albeit within the confines of a tiny cell.

I will read it again.

PICT0425 PICT0427

 

Getting back to today’s Daily Prompt. It asks..If I was given a robot, which task would I use it for?

I sometimes feel pity for the executioners. Not the type who would video record an execution for the torment of a victim’s family! But the traditional executioner down through history. A judge and jury call the shots but the buck always stops with him.

I try to imagine what it must be like for him, when he is alone at night with his thoughts. He can’t explain his actions away with terms like ‘self defence’. It is an unnecessary kill. I feel sorry for him sometimes.

In Ireland last week the abortion debate has started again. I have never been in that situation so I am not qualified to judge. But there is one issue which really upsets me. Suicide risk of the pregnant female is often given as being reasonable grounds for granting an abortion.

My question is this… What about the doctor? What if, after a few abortions, he breaks down? What if he becomes suicidal?

It’s very easy to be judge and jury. Being executioner is a different kettle of fish altogether.

In Poland last month a doctor was sacked for refusing to conduct an abortion. His conscience wouldn’t allow him to go through with it. But the law cares nothing of one’s personal conscience. You can read about it here  http://www.lifesitenews.com/news/leading-polish-pro-life-ob-gyn-sacked-fined-for-refusing-abortion-says-it-w

Any of my regular readers (Hi Mom) will know that I have a strong dislike for leaders who command whole armies from the comfort of an office. No blood on his / her hands!

I suppose what I am trying to say is that perhaps it is good to put ourselves in the shoes of those holding the syringe or whatever instrument they use. I feel sorry for those people, sometimes. They aren’t robots.

Thank you for reading

Frankie.

In response to http://dailypost.wordpress.com/dp_prompt/you-robot/  and  http://dailypost.wordpress.com/dp_prompt/off-the-shelf/

 

The love shack.

Apart from myself there have been approximately a half-dozen others who have seen my wife naked. Worse yet, we all live in the same town!

Still, time is the great healer. It doesn’t bother me so much now. It doesn’t bother her in the slightest.

We were a young couple. Newly married. Twenty-two years a piece. Mad for each other.

For the first two years of marriage we rented a small house while we saved for the deposit on our current home. It was a perfect little love nest. I have photos somewhere but I found this one online. You can see the cottage and its proximity to the beach.

The love shack, baby!

The love shack, baby!

The cottage is very old, in fact there was a ghost which used to whisper at times. True! But that didn’t bother us because we were too busy with each other, you know, exorcising our inhibitions.

Then one day…Crash!…Splash! The water tank in the attic gave up its own ghost. It was one of the older galvanised tanks, unlike the newer plastic versions. Anyway, it had rusted through, dumping its load. The ceiling gave way and drenched all below. Nether of us were in at the time and it wasn’t until hours later when we arrived back from work that we made the discovery.

The cottage owner was very helpful. He gave us the keys to another, more modern, holiday chalet in the neighbourhood while he got the old cottage fixed up.

On the Saturday night we went out with friends for a few beers and a spot of dancing. Bear in mind we were still young.

Upon returning, nature took its course. Just like the movies there was a trail of clothing from the front door to the bedroom door. Enough said.

The next morning we just lay there recalling how much fun we’d had with our friends at the disco. Well we laughed and snuggled and chatted until I could hold it no longer. I had one in the barrel and it was high time to let it go.

So up I get and scurry to the bedroom door in a panic. I reached for the doorknob and it came off in my hand! This was bad!! The door was hinged to open inwards. I tried refitting and turning it slowly but it was no use; the door was a very tight fit in the door frame, maybe because the house was rarely occupied.

Needless to say my wife was in stitches. No compassion there. Not even a waste paper basket in the room. Yes, if there had been I would have went in it. Image is nothing, in a situation like this!

Her laughing slowed when she realised that all our clothes were on the other side of the door. Her laughing stopped when she had to wriggle out the window. I didn’t give her time to mull it over. By now, I was in countdown mode. The idea was that she would enter through the front door and, once inside, open the bedroom door from the inside. Good job it was a bungalow.

But then. “Look Daddy, look! That woman has a bare bum.”

I stuck my head out the window. There was a family next door having breakfast outside. Lovely! Both parents and the two children stared as my wife picked herself up and ran off around the side of the house. Not only that but there was a couple out walking their spotted dalmatians who had also stopped to feast their eyes. Being totally honest, at that moment, I didn’t care what they thought. I just needed to go, so so badly.

It came to pass, the plan worked. The relief was Biblical!

A day or two later we were back in the Love Shack. A week or two later, the townsfolk found someone else’s wife to talk about.

The first thing I did when we bought our own house…I planted a hedge. Because as we all know, those who forget their history are destined to repeat it.

Thank you for reading

Frankie.

 

 

 

You know Ennio?

You know Ennio?

For some reason I can’t get this man out of my head today.

ennio-morricone-autograph

When musicians talk about the great music composers they often mention Mozart, Beethoven, Bach, and the other guy. I am not a musician. I can just about play the guitar, badly. But I think most real musicians will agree that Ennio Morricone could give them a run for their money. A fist-full of money!

As a young cowboy I didn’t stop to think where the background music originated. I only knew it suited us both, me and Clint. At primary school (all boys), we would whistle the theme to ‘The good, the bad, and the ugly,’ as the headmaster’s footsteps could be heard approaching the classroom.

Morricone has composed the music for lots of movies. Including a personal favourite, from 1986, The Mission. It starred Robert DeNiro, Jeremy Irons, and a young Liam Neeson.

I was fifteen when I saw it in the local cinema. I went alone, which was good because I found the tears welling in my eyes near the end. I won’t spoil it if you’ve never seen it. A great movie which told a true story from all sides, the good, the bad and the ugly.

In fact, it doesn’t take a proper musician to appreciate Gabriel’s Oboe. Any earthly creature with an ear could feel the emotion in the notes (they don’t make truckers like they used to).

Thank you for reading

Frankie.

 

Slow learner.

Slow learner.

images

“Pride always comes before a fall.”

My mother (the one with the dentures) said that.

I’m sure somebody else had coined it before her. But she never gave them credit for it. She made that comment her own and took all the pride for it.

It’s true though, about pride. Her words have been ringing in my ears on so many occasions throughout my life so far. And if my past is anything to go by, I will have plenty of falls in the future.

For instance, if this nonsense turns out to be the most popular post in the history of WordPress and the Likes are in the hundreds, overnight I will develop a swagger like John Wayne. I will forget Mammy’s wisdom until tomorrow’s post which will struggle to reach three Likes. And only then will I remember her words.

In recent years I have been improving my ability to shun pride. I try to stay grounded. I say “try.” But it’s like writing or running or anything really. The more I practice, the easier it gets.

I try to understand what the likes of Saint Francis understood. Even the wild animals wanted to be near him. I think he was the first person to recieve the stigmata. But in his early life he was no saint (as the cliché goes). He once said “I have been all things unholy. If God can work through me, He can work through anyone.”

My wife has warned me not to get too serious in my blog. I know she’s right but I can’t help it sometimes. I don’t want to be the great pretender on my own blog!

The truth is people like Saint Francis facinate me! The way a particle accelerator facinates a molecular scientist. Or outer space facinates an astronomer.

God is almost a dirty word in modern society. I wonder how they achieved that. It seems to be working for them, the new age thinking. I am no threat. The closest I will get to stigmata is perhaps a blister on my palm from holding a beer bottle the wrong way.

To wrap up and in answer to the question posed in today’s Daily Prompt I will steal a few lines from another mother, and take the entire credit like the imposter and hypocrite that I am.

images

Thank you for reading

Frankie.

In response to http://dailypost.wordpress.com/2014/03/27/prompt-the-great-pretender/

Sacred Heart.

Sacred Heart.

Lanciano1

I will take a break from the silly stories for this evening’s post, if you don’t mind.

You are welcome to leave and read something else for whatever reason. But I have to get this out there, today, for some unknown reason. Maybe it will make sense to somebody.

Some of you will already know about my invisible friend, and how he teaches me things without having to put in an appearance. How he sets things up in order that I learn properly.

Today there have been too many prompts for me to ignore, and they are all begging me to tell this one story. Again, please leave if this story is not for you. I will have something light hearted tomorrow. Thank you.

About two years ago I was at Sunday Mass. I go there most, but not all Sundays. I’m only human. Like most Sundays I would daydream about this and that during the service. And to be totally honest some of my daydreams would shock even the author of Fifty Shades. I have normal daydreams also…sometimes.

On this particular Sunday my invisible friend whispered a question to me. It was so feint I thought I had come up with it myself.

Why do some people treat the wafer (host) at communion time as if it were the real thing? Surely this Body and Blood ritual has been misrepresented somewhere in the past two thousand years.

I pondered it again the very next day, driving in my truck. I wasn’t losing my religion but as usual I was questioning things like crazy. My mind is never on the road. It’s always elsewhere. Trucking is a great job for any budding philosopher. Lots of thinking time. Up here, in the cab, above the hustle and bustle. We see it all, us truckers. I can see Scotland on a clear day!

I listen to political chat shows although you would be forgiven for thinking otherwise.

So this day (the day after the question) the radio host took a break from the usual. He had a guest on who was talking about Padré Pio, a famous stigmatic. Incidentally there are a few alive in the world today. My aunt met one a few years back. He was also a monk.

Anyway, in the course of the conversation somebody mentions an event called The miracle of Lanciano.

In all my forty years I had never heard of this. In fact very few people get to hear about it. It’s one of those things you won’t see on telly. Because it is the polar opposite of the aim of television. I am not saying all telly is bad. But he who pays the piper calls the tune. That’s all I’m saying.

Getting back to the radio. The person told of a priest years ago in a town in Italy. He was saying Mass. At the consecration when he was holding the wafer aloft and saying the same old words, something happened. He started to doubt!

He doubted that the wafer was really the Body of Christ. He doubted that the Wine was really the Blood.

Instantly the wafer started to bleed, real blood. He dropped it onto the altar in shock. Members of the congregation ran to the altar thinking he had hurt himself. What they all witnessed was the wafer turning into a piece of flesh and the wine in the chalice turning to blood.

Samples were tested and found to be the same blood as the Turin shroud.

A scientist was given a sample of the flesh. He was told nothing of its history. He concluded that it was from the left ventricle of a human heart and that the person suffered a traumatic death.

There have been other identical miracles down through the years and in all corners of the globe. Buenos Aires, Poland, China, Japan…

I have included two videos below. But you can go and search the web yourself.

I am not a scientist. I am a trucker. All I know is that the question never entered my mind for all my forty years, until one day, and the very next day I got my answer.

I hope you get all your questions answered. There can be a time delay with the answer. But just like the old internet connections, spiritual connections are improving all the time it seems.

 

If this message has no meaning to you. Don’t even give it a second thought. Pass on by.

I’m still the same blogger.

Thank you for reading,

Frankie.

In response to http://dailypost.wordpress.com/2014/03/22/prompt-young/

Here are two samples you won’t find on telly.

There are better quality videos of this scientist on youtube. This is only a snippet.  He was an athiest writing a book about athteism when he realised the truth.

The one

The one

Attention Moderators! Could we get somebody down the prompt department ASAP! And bring a bucket of water.

Honestly!

“Tell us about your love life,” she says.  I wouldn’t even tell my wife about my love life!

Besides, there’s no point. It’s all been told before. And told better. With images of flowers in fields. Or waves lapping the shoreline. Or the sun setting on the horizon. Or little birds landing on shoulders. Or Monkeys jumping from one tree to the next.

Well WordPress, I can’t do poetry!!

You must understand, I’m not the sort of chap who can look at a tree and see something other than a tree. To me a tree is a tree, a flower is a flower, the sea is the sea, and a fluffy white cloud is just a by-product of evaporation, a mass of condensed water vapour floating in the sky.

Beneath this outer shell of chiseled male perfection is just an ordinary everyday man who knows what he likes when he sees it.

He doesn’t look at his ladies and go “How do I love thee? Let me count the ways.” No he looks at her and says “Woah! She’s alright.” Not out loud, you understand.

If she has the same effect a few weeks later then it’s love. Pure, raw, uncensored love! And after a year or more, if he can picture himself when he’s old, and grey (but still handsome)  enjoying her company then she’s probably the one. Put a ring on it!

Maybe kids will come along and help hold the thing together. Either way, it’s not the end of the world. It’s only Love

Thank you for reading

Frankie.

http://dailypost.wordpress.com/2014/03/18/daily-prompt-thats-amore/

The power of love.

The power of love.

She stank, stunk, whatever the word is, like a stinky thing. Looking back, I can’t believe I was able to go through with it. I can still smell it, in my mind’s nose. And now? It’s only now at times like this i realise she was worth it.

“Did you know chewing gum was invented nine thousand years ago?” she asks. But she doesn’t care for my reply. She keeps on reading Hugs or Kisses or whatever the magazine is called. Teenage daughters are like that, all business.

Before she came along I would think “Drama Queen” anytime I watched a movie with a scene where some guy witnesses the birth of his child then runs through the hospital corridors telling strangers of his new found purpose in life. “I’m a dad, I’m a dad!” Oh give it a break, grow a pair.

When my first daughter was born I was that drama queen. I ran down the stairs to the public phone. No cell phones in those days, at least not for me. I can still remember informing my parents that they were now grandparents. I think they were more excited than me. As I spoke on the phone there was a woman waiting to use it looking at me. She started to cry. Just like the movies!

When I hung up I hugged her, just like the movies. It turned out her husband had just suffered a stroke. I felt guilty. I hugged her more gently then stepped away to allow her use the phone. Hospitals eh? Like a box of chocolates.

Two weeks later the novelty had worn off. Lads, when you’re standing over a baby that smells like a sewer rat and you have to change her nappy (diaper) reality kicks in real fast. But the crazy thing is you will do it, and you won’t mind. It’s the dirtiest job but only you can do it properly. It will be worth it in the end. That baby will be like a walking encyclopedia with her Hugs or Kisses or whatever it’s called.

Thank you for reading

Frankie

Ps….in a hotel tonight and the internet must be from Jamaica maan. It’s nice and easyyy….. Grrrr

http://dailypost.wordpress.com/2014/03/01/prompt-chain-gang/