Thinking Out Loud

June 17, 2018

Teddy Bears Baptist Picnic

Church Picnic Potluck: If you don’t like salads, pasta or casseroles, there’s always desserts.

Today, after the worship service we’re going to a church picnic.

Not any type of church picnic however, a Baptist1 church picnic.

And we’re bringing a salad2.

Oh no! How did that happen? What have we become?

The church where my wife has been serving as pianist for the last four months is having their Church Family Picnic, and while I would normally be attending a different service3, being together on Father’s Day seems like the right thing to do; plus just showing up for the food doesn’t seem right…

So… I wake up in the morning and like you do, I’m thinking about the day ahead, and the song The Teddy Bears’ Picnic jumps into my brain.

And then I realize it.

This is where, in my youth, in my formative musical years, I developed a thing for songs which have key changes; especially songs where the verse and the chorus are in fundamentally different keys and it alternates back and forth.

So here, for your Father’s Day entertainment, is Anne Murray4 singing the song, followed by a recording of the original. If you read this early enough in the day, consider taking Dad out for a picnic lunch5.


1 If you know my part of the world, there are two dominant strains of Baptist here. The one — which we attended 20+ years ago for about 18 months — is the one more similar to the SBC. The one we’re going to is part of the denomination once characterized as moving in a more liberal direction, but definitely moving back to its more Evangelical roots. At least, I think that’s right.
2 It’s a pasta salad that looks like a casserole at a distance. We have several categories covered at once here, if need be.
3 They had their church barbecue last week. Nobody brings anything; they provide hot dogs and hamburgers, potato chips or nachos and a drink. (No desserts, however. Crushed ice and cotton candy for the kids. Sigh!) Planned correctly, a person could get on a circuit for these things in the month of June, and never need to make lunch. It’s not your church? What are they going to say?
4 If I were still doing things for Canadian radio stations, this would qualify as Canadian content, provided Anne recorded it in Canada, which I think she did. “CanCon” as it’s called here — which is in no way similar to ComicCon — requires that at least two of four factors be Canadian: Music composer, Lyric composer, Artist, Production. Arranged in a logo that sort of spells “maple,” the MAPL logo still appears on music product here, provided you can track down physical product at all.
5 Restaurants are a Mother’s Day thing, at least in my books. Better to make something special, eat it at home, and put less stress on the credit card or bank account.

June 20, 2010

Appreciating the Vision Even When you Don’t Get The Technology

Happy Father’s Day!

In a few weeks it will be seven years since my dad passed away.   I was thinking last night and this morning about him, and about how interested he was in everything I was doing individually, and what we were doing collectively as a family.

It suddenly occurred to me that he would have liked the concept of this blog.

He wouldn’t understand all the nuances of the technology, and I’d probably talk about “articles” I had written instead of “posts;” and “letters” people had written back instead of “comments;” but I think he would love the idea of people sharing ideas over the internet.

He’d also be fascinated by the number and variety of readers this thing pulls in; I know I am.   He’d be impressed that it’s not just shouting into the wind, but that there are real readers who are sharing real dialog; and that some of them “blog” (I’d use the word “write”) as well, and I share in what they are doing online also.

I think he instilled in me the idea that it’s better to be “effective” than to be “successful.”

Yesterday, we listened as Christian talk-show host Drew Marshall interviewed self-proclaimed humanist and popular singer-songwriter Dan Hill.   I actually went to high school with Dan.   Anyway, the title of Dan’s book is I Am My Father’s Son.

Hill said this was a real breakthrough moment when he realized the truth of that statement, and he is realizing it more and more each day.  (That interview will be posted online here on Friday, June 25.)

I can resonate with that statement.   I am also my father’s son.

My father believed strongly in putting effort into things that have eternal value.   I have failed at a lot of things, but at least when I get to the finish-line, and He asks me “What did you to do build My kingdom?” I will at least be able to formulate some kind of answer.   Despite my imperfections — which are many — I am trying to keep the cross in view as I map out my days, my weeks and my months.

Better this than never attempting anything, right?

I think my Dad would have liked this blog.   For all I know, he’s being allowed to look over my shoulder as I type this, and got to read this before you did.

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