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6:35 am EST 37°F (3°C) in South Rockwood, MI
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I started to make an update here almost exactly a week ago to the minute, and only managed to get one paragraph into it before more or less giving up on it last Thursday. I just had so much stress at work — two very long nights combined to give me nearly 47 hours for a shortened four-day week — and too much other shit to take care of, even in a three-day weekend, to get around to this. I’m going to try again.
The first thing I was going to mention was the outcome of my November 30 court date at 36th District Court in downtown Detroit, before Magistrate Millicent D. Sherman. After I had waited there for perhaps two hours, she stated that the next group of cases she was about to call were being dismissed because the issuing officer(s) had failed to show up; roughly halfway through that list, she called me, and that was that. With that, my August 17 ticket for disregarding a red signal was history, and I have no points and will not be paying any insurance surcharges.
Geez, it has been that long since my last update. In some more recent news, I’m going to skip forward to this past Sunday evening, December 16. When my clock radio went off that afternoon, I heard on WWJ-AM (950) that the University of Michigan football program will finally come out from under the 40-year shadow of the “three yards and a cloud of dust” offense. Rich Rodriguez was hired away from West Virginia University to become the next head coach in Ann Arbor, and, praise the Lord, he is bringing his spread-option offense with him. Anything has to be better than running behind your left tackle half the time and one-step drops with quick, almost lateral passes to the sideline receiver the other half — although we still have one more game of that to look forward to, as Lloyd Carr will still coach the Capital One Bowl against Heisman Trophy winner Tim Tebow and the University of Florida.
Not long after I heard that news, people began showing up for the poker game I had been planning to host for weeks. Despite the timing — six-something in the afternoon Sunday, in the aftermath of what amounted to a blizzard — we had a total crowd of seven participants, myself included. I would survive four hours of poker to win the night’s top prize of $40, or essentially a $30 profit after accounting for my $10 buy-in. It was sort of a weird progression, the way I ended up winning; I was generally playing on a mediocre-to-average chip stack most of the night, and was a distant third in chips when we got down to three players, but then I started catching some hands and playing more aggressively. The only player I think I took out all night was my friend Marc, heads-up at the very end, and it took doubling up off of him three or four times to do that.
At this point, I’m going to rewind one week to Sunday, December 9. By now, I’m sure you’ve heard about the pair of shootings at religious gatherings in Colorado that left five people dead and five more wounded. It has since come to light that the shooter, 24-year-old Matthew J. Murray of the Denver suburb of Englewood, was at least bisexual if not gay, and was motivated largely by revenge for having been asked to leave the so-called “Christian” group Youth With A Mission in 2002. Now you and I both well know that so-called “fundamentalist ‘Christians’” are going to retreat further into their fantasy world with claims that “the homosexuals are coming to get us — we’re being ‘persecuted’!” or some similar lie, but we can hope they might learn from this.
If the events of December 9 taught us anything, it should be that what happened that day is the end result of homophobic judgment, condemnation, and dis-association. Clearly, Matthew Murray’s actions cannot be excused or condoned, but in the state of severe mental illness to which he had been driven by the actions of the so-called “Christians” at Youth With A Mission and New Life Church, he couldn’t see that fact — he couldn’t see any other way out. I predicted back on April 18, in the wake of the Virginia Tech massacre, that something like this would happen if so-called “Christians” didn’t shape up and start unconditionally accepting their gay, lesbian, bisexual, and transgender brothers and sisters in Christ, as God demands us all to do, and now we see that I was right.
When will the so-called “fundamentalist ‘Christians’” learn? It’s now too late for four of them, who will be joined in Hell soon enough by New Life Church security guard Jeanne Assam. She punched her irrevocable boarding pass to Satan’s home by violating God’s Sixth Commandment, “thou shalt not kill,” in an unsuccessful attempt to kill Murray. (He killed himself after being wounded by Assam, but that’s immaterial — God will judge Assam’s intent, not the outcome.) We can see what so-called “Christianity” really means to New Life and the vast majority of other “fundamentalist ‘Christians’”: that it’s fine and dandy to violate the Ten Commandments, as long as it furthers the earthly political goal of Christians über alles.
Another four-day week of work beckons, so I need to get posting this and moving on to sleep. I will have this Friday off, in order to attend my sister’s graduation from the University of Michigan Law School, and then it’s back into work for two days before having Christmas Eve and Christmas Day off (as my usual “weekend” of Monday and Tuesday).