I used to go to church, but when my first wife divorced me, and priests molestations were continually covered up by the Vatican and archdiocese, it just kinda was a drag to remain being Catholic.
Klecko has made attempts to find a house of God over the years, but to be honest....you are what you are.
I am a Catholic even though my standing is in question. Over the years I have tried other options. I've been to Baptist, Lutheran, Evangelical, Assembly of God, Jews for Jesus.... churches, so I think it's safe to say I've pretty much covered the gambit.
I guess I can understand the importance of why we should go, but to tell you the honest truth, it's not Jesus that I am at odds with. I have been on the God Squad since day one. But, if truth be told, it's his ambassadors that freak the living crap out of me.
I think that's why, if I am lucky enough to make heaven, I've already cut a deal with the Lord. I kinda mentioned to him (in a real respectful way of course) that I was more than dissapointed that I didn't get to be alive to bake for him at the Last Supper.
With that said, my people are with his team, and there are some pretty hardcore negotiations taking place concerning whether Klecko gets to bake for the first heavenly meal that takes place after the lion lays down with the lamb.
Now that I have reached middle age, I think I'm suscribing to the Johnny Cash or Elvis form of spirituality. I get a sense that with those 2 cats, they never were "off the clock" with their faith, instead.....they gave everything to God. when they took drugs or delved into wrong doings, they didn't pull a Jimmy Swaggart (who I will confess I really like) and deny wrong doings or accountability.
Instead they just kept their eyes on the cross and moved forward.
Even as they waded through the sewage of their deeds.
For the last year, maybe year and a 1/2, Klecko has made Watching the 3 Stooges on his couch with his illegal ammount of dogs his church.
Alright.....before you scream BLASPHEMY......I'll qualify this by explaining that each Sunday when AMC runs the 3 Stooges from 6-9 a.m., I am always alone. My family doesn't get up by 9 on the weekends.
Chefs don't call and scream, people don't try to hit me up for donations, problems just are not on the table during this time frame. I don't think that there is another 3 hour window like that in my week. We all have things that we love, but sometimes stuff you love can also piss you off.
But, then there's things that bring joy. Joy is never bad, never wrong, it never gets on your nerves. when I sit on my battered horseshoe couch, wrapped in a Cornhuskers quilt with 4 mutts (and sometimes a cat) and the Stooges engaging in their antics. It is as spiritual as it gets.
If you wanna dare to say Christ isn't there totally digging it....well I look forward to watching you get a playful pitchfork to your backside on judgment day.
People can view this anyway they like, but dude....I'm too old for wrestling over theology or homiletics, I've cut my deal with God.
As a kid, I would celebrate when we got to skip church. At my house growing up....some years we skipped it 50 times LOL.
But, now that I have found my new ritual, I do get ticked off when my 3 hour window gets jerked with. When I drove my son off to college for the 1st time, it was during the Stooges, about a hour into the drive, I did make mention of this and he got all whiney....
"Sorry I had to ruin your day by moving out and taking on a college education!" At least during our last few hours we had an element of normality by fighting.
During the last 2 Sundays, I've had to take my pups in to the vet. I have all of them on insurance programs and they all get bi annual comps, last week however, Gracie and Romeo had to get teeth cleaning. Kind of a big deal because they have to "wonderdrug" these guys and the process takes the entire day.
I take my crew to Banfield (which is like a vet chain) and often times they rotate doctors. Last week when I picked them up, I was greeted by a 30(?) year old who looked like a blond Sarah Palin.
She greeted me and explained that she held back on some of the shots for the 2 dogs receiving dental work, because they already had this drug - and that drug in their system. Throughout our entire conversation her language always remained within it's industries vernacular. I was kinda smitten.
So today I caught a few Stooge episodes. In fact I think it was the one where Shemp was in heaven, and his Uncle maintained the gates security, and he said Shemp was kinda a wack-nut and couldn't gain admission unless he went down to earth and helped Moe and Curly mend their wicked ways.
Anyways....I take the dogs in, the tech brought me into the room and said we needed to get temps. the only drag about this is Gracie is a 50# Sheltie / Eskimo and she doesn't like things placed in her butt,
Romeo...he doesn't even budge, that little Jack Russell just grins at you.
Gracie though, she takes it personal and fights to the end. My dogs have been going there for 8 years so everybody knows the drill.
Klecko basically drops his big Pollack frame onto top of the Sheltie (who is perched up on a stainless steel table while the tech employees quick hands, mingled with silent prayers and mumbled curses. The part that is the worst is today, as the tech removed the thermometer, Gracies swerved around and brushed a big glob of excess Dog Butt Lubricant all over the front of my jacket.
The tech did her best not to laugh, but c'mon....what's a sister gonna do?
Todays meeting with the blond Sarah Palin was brief but thorough, when I went back out into the parking ramp it was what...maybe 8:15 a.m. and there was about 60 teenagers congregating. Most of them had plastic bags in their hands, and when I asked one kid what they were doing, he told me if you get caught selling weed in the Capitol City, you end up scouring parking ramps on the sabbath. Of course the others echoed hith sentiments with tired chuckles.
So when I'm driving home, the blond Sarah Palin gave me another one of those "Middle Aged Man Flashbacks."
You're never really certain what will jump start them, but in this case the connection was easy. OK.....from this point out......Klecko is going to change the names to protect the....the,I don't know, the people in the story I guess, but many years ago there was a group of guys who worked a 6 p.m. to a 2-4 a.m. shift.
Often times these lads showed up to work early and every once in awhile they'd catch a buxom bombshell on the old main drag that surprisingly enough, was'nt afraid to be seen smoking cigs with a baker who wore a soiled "wife beater" and plastic shorts which were adorned with hula girls.
It was discovered that this woman was a vet and her name was Antoinette. she had a practice that was fairly close to the bakery and time to time would pass by for the encouragement and joyful spirits that only a village baker can provide.
As time passed, the baker named Johnny X, he would go either by himself or with other workmates to the animals clinic and talk to Antoinette. How funny these boys must have looked, pardon the pun, but these young men followed her like puppies.
This vet could have doubled as a model in Van Halen's "Hot for Teacher" video. In addition to having an extremly large chest, she wore "Naughty Librarian" glasses and pulled her long blond hair up into a rough bun thus exposing her neck.
Dude....that neck was something. Long necks are hard to pull off. If it's too long you have "Giraffe Neck."
Giraffe neck can tumble what is already a very solid look, if you know what I mean.
Like everything else though, Antionettes was perfect. In her office she kept a map in her drawer. It was a map of the surrounding area, and in several places there were addresses marked with red inked X's.
She could get kinda militant and go into rants on the mistreatment of some of the dogs in the area.
One thing that shouldn't be to hard for you readers to phathom is most industrial production places typically don't exsist in the nice parts of town. 99 out of a 100 of these sites are in some cesspool where people have been afraid to hope or dream for generations.
She also had Polaroids showing wounds on many of these dogs. Not all of them were patients. Our good doctor was not averse to doing a little reconnaissance when needed, but that really needed to be done at night, and even strong studly young guys had to be on their toes in this part of town.
So as she was placing these pictures back into the envelope, Johnny X-Y and Z were all kinda choked up. Johnny Y asked "Can't the authorities get involved, can't they help?"
Antoinette replied by telling these boys that she made attempts, but in this part of town the problem outweighed the funding.
So now Jonny Z asked...
"What would happen if....lets just say some of these dogs that have been starved or tortured were emancipated, would there be some kind of system to plug them into?"
The vet stood up, and started walking towards the back of her building. She stopped at a place where there were empty kennels. she stood there and mentioned how those particular cages could house anything from a Chihuahua to a Saint Bernard.
Then they all went and smoked in her back parking lot. As she extinguished her butt, she tilted a flower pot (one of 7 or 8 that rested in a row) and they all saw that there was a key hidden under said pot.
As the group said their good byes, she handed a certain somebody the Mutt list and everybody dispersed and went on there way.
In a bakery, you always make products with nuts at the end of the shift. That way the feds don't jump your mug for cross contamination and allergens. So at this particular shop it was very common to finish your bake at about 1 a.m. by inserting a jag of Walnut Rye pan breads into the oven.
The bake time is traditionally 40 minutes for a 2 pound pan bread, so on most nights (early mornings) you'd finish your shift smoking cigs on the sidewalk while your last oven load baked off, or every once in awhile it was said that some peeps broke into pastry guys cabinet and drank his rum....however, that was never proven LOL.
This closing chore is always done by one baker, but it wasn't unusual at all for another baker who might of got off at around midnight to hang out. Where else would he go at that time, and that way when the work was done a lot of whiskey was shared in different bakers garages all across Saint Paul while their family's slept in peace.
Then on one night when the boredom of repition was at it's height......Johnny Z said to Johnny X....
"I got that map in my locker. It looks like there is a couple places that we could patrol before the Walnut Rye is baked off."
Both lads laughed because they didn't have a clue what would happen, or what they would do, But it was reported to me that on there very first stop, they found a Border Collie tied to a tree with its ribcage poking out just like they do on the the television commercials of the starving kids in Africa.
The lads untied it from the tree, and gently tossed the nearly dead dog into a sedan and one of the boys went back and unloaded the Walnut Rye, while another guy just took that dog for a walk....funny, it was never seen after that.
Johnny X and Johnny Z talked about the ethics of what took place during the next few weeks, during the early hours of the morning when all the other employees had left.
Johnny X was kinda troubled about the action, but Johnny Z responded with......
"F-that, that dog was dead if somebody didn't do something, the people who own it are lucky I didn't put a cap through their a** as well. In fact, you hang tight and I'm gonna go Anne Frank another one of those pups!"
From that moment on, a dog kidnapping mission was always referred to as an Anne Franking. Like "Dude, Im gonna Anne Frank that mutt on ***** street." or "I didn't Anne Frank that dog by the blue dumpster. I think "A" might be over reacting on that one."
One night Johnny Z went on a run by himself, but the dog he was trying to help....it was one that was suspected of being in numorous dog fights. It was kept in a kennel that the owners padlocked, so "Z" actually brought bolt cutters, removed the lock with little effort or noise, but when he opened the kennel, the Rotty took a big chunk out of him.
Typically this would of made the 3 Johnny's laugh, but the bite marks went deeper than the funny bone on this occasion.
To remedy this, the cooler in the bakery had pepperoni's for specialty bread sticks, so when one of the Johnny's was out Anne Franking...they'd always start the rescue with a pepperoni feeding. There was never an issue after that.
The missions were sporadic, but all 3 Johnny's told me that in words there deeds were unforgivable, but in the eyes of these dogs and one smoking hot vet.....they were comepletly understood.