Saturday, January 31, 2009

February Calendar

February 2009
Activities of Interest to Freethinkers

Sat., Feb. 7, 7:00pm
Movie Night at the Bradleys, 6705 E. 54th St. Movie selection: TBA

Sun., Feb. 8, 1:00 pm
Humanist Study Group at Randy’s, 6705 E. 54th

Tues., Feb. 10, 7:00 pm
Liberal Action Network at Zarrow Library.ª

Sat., Feb. 14, 2:00 pm
Secular Singers at Gail’s house, 4630 S. Victor. I now have the music for “Life Every Voice and Sing.” Join us as we sing this and many other songs.

Sun., Feb. 15, 1:00 pm
Humanist Meeting at Hardesty Library. See note below.*

Wed., Feb. 18, 7:00 pm
Atheists Meetup Mid-Month Social Gathering. Venue: Rib Crib, 5025 S. Sheridan. For menu go to

Sun., Feb. 22, 1:00 pm
Tulsa Atheists Meetup at Agora Coffee House, Fontana Center.

Sat., Feb. 28, 11:30 am
Food & Fellowship at The Rice Bowl, 4307B S. Sheridan. Menu with prices can be found at

ªFor the first time in Oklahoma history both houses of the state legislature are controlled by the Republicans. Those of us with liberal values must write to our legislators and let them know where we stand on the issues. If the laws which the legislature enact have any importance to you, please show up and add your voice to ours.

*Program by Brian Hill: A half hour DVD lecture on the immediate fallout of Darwin's theory on British and American scientific communities in the 19th century.

Questions? Call Randy at 622-6975 or Dan at 798-3629.

Wednesday, January 28, 2009

Surgery goes well

My father had his gall baldder removed today. We were at the hospital at 5:30 am for the scheduled surgery. The surgery did not start until 7:30 and lasted for only about 45 miniutes. We were concerned primarily by his age: 86. The surgery went well, and we were back at his apartment before noon. He has slept most of the day. We hope he is more like his old self tomorrow.

Since we all got up so early, we all took a nap in the afternoon. Complicating things is the fact that we have four inches of snow on the ground which fell overnight.

Tuesday, January 27, 2009

Walking on the third level

Yesterday I walked inside a large building up on the third level. The advantage of doing a walk on the third level of the building is that the floor was smooth -- no ups and downs. The disadvantage is that there are few windows to look through. The apartment complex has a front side and a back side. To walk a complete loop takes me about seven minutes. I walked for a hour, which is more or less three miles.

Tomorrow my Dad is going to have surgery to remove his gall bladder. Unfortunately the weather is bad. It was extremely slick yesterday walking from the car to our room. It snowed a little during the night which provided a bit of traction this morning.

Sunday, January 18, 2009

Today's events

There were three things on my calendar for today.

First was the service at Church of the Restoration, still troubled by its members inability to get along with one another. The sermon this morning was delivered by a lady who is a public school teacher nearing retirement. The subject of her talk was Martin Luther King. She had a rare videotape of Dr. King speaking to a group of students. Attendance was low again this Sunday.

The second event I attended was the monthly meeting of the Humanist Association of Tulsa. There were 15 present for this meeting. Being the treasurer of HAT, I collected dues for 2009. Previously, 15 had paid. Today I collected dues from ten more, bringing our total for this year up to 25 now.

Finally, this evening I had dinner at Bodean’s Seafood Restaurant. The dinner was in honor of Howard Kelley. Howard is a former member of HAT who died at the age of 90 last year. Bodean’s is a pricey restaurant with entrees going from $20 to $45 apiece. I ate a bowl of clam chowder and kept my check below $10.

Wednesday, January 14, 2009

Illness forces me to miss meetings

I had to cancel my planned activities last Sunday as I awoke with a miserable cold. Only today was I getting back to normal. I had planned to go to church on Sunday morning, and in the afternoon I had hoped to attend a training session sponsored by the local Democratic Party headquarters on speaking with your Congressional representative. Instead I stayed home and nursed a cold.

I called Gail and told her I had a cold, and we delayed this week’s practice until Thursday.

On Tuesday I had a meeting of the Liberal Action Network in the evening at a nearby public library. Only Marilyn C. showed up for the meeting. I wrote a letter to my new state senator, who happens to be a mortgage loan officer. What gave me pause is the fact that he graduated from ORU and attends Victory Christian Center Church. I need to do more promoting of the LAN so that instead of two letters being written, maybe ten or twenty are written.

Tonight was the night for our mid-month social for the Tulsa Atheists Meetup. We had a dozen people attending. The event was held at La Hacienda, a Mexican restaurant on Peoria.

Tomorrow I hope to be well enough to walk three miles at TCC West. But first, Gail will be coming over to play duets with me. She has some new music which we are anxious to try out.

Saturday, January 10, 2009

Walking in a new venue

Ordinarily, the Fitness Center at TCC West would be open today, but since today is one of those days between semesters, it was closed. As an alternative, there is the Case Community Center out by Rivers Park. The CCC is a new facility located about a mile west of WalMart. The walking/running track is elevated and goes around the basketball court. Whereas at TCC lane markings are used, there are no lanes marked at Case. There were plenty of people using the facility when we arrived. The track had so many people on it, that you had to weave you way around some of the walkers. Some people were actually sitting on the track.

Down below on the court, elementary aged children were engaged in a supervised game of basketball. Adult referees in uniform were controlling the game. This meant there was also plenty of noise. I had my MP3 player with me, but at times the noise of the crowd overrode the music (Ian Hobson playing Rachmaninoff) I was listening to. The Spring semester at CC begins next Monday.

This afternoon I went to Gail’s house for Secular Singers. As I was parking, Bob H. drove up behind me. We went inside and soon Bea arrived. We were wondering about Randy who usually attends. I called Randy and he was involved in another activity. I think he had forgotten about Secular Singers. This was Bob’s first time at Secular Singers. We began with “Wildwood Flower” written by Mabel Carter and continued on for two hours. As they say, time flies when you are having fun.

Bob reserved a meeting room for us at the Muskogee Library. We will be having a meetup there at the request of a lady from Muskogee who was a plaintiff in a Ten Commandments marker case. The lady lives in Stigler, which is about 40 miles south of Muskogee.

Sunday, January 04, 2009

Making funeral plans

Last Friday, a woman from the local funeral home came over, at Jan’s invitation, to help me plan my funeral. She arrived at 10 am and left shortly after 1 pm. I have decided upon cremation of my remains, referred to in the business as cremains. At this time I do not plan to have a funeral service, although that may change at a later date.

Jan told the lady about my being hospitalized in January 2007 with a brain tumor. It turns out the lady from the funeral home had herself a very serious medical problem (MRSA) last year. The brain tumor I had did not disqualify me from the cremation plans offered by the funeral home. They have four questions you have to answer, one of which concerns AIDS. I don’t recall the other three. In any case, I passed the health questions with flying colors, you could say. I signed up for the five-year plan, which will cost about $2800. If I were to pay it all right now, it would cost $2200. That is what I would prefer, but if I were to die before the five years are up, the funeral home would pay the reminder of what I owe. I have thirty days to make any changes to the plan.

I remember watching a Penn & Teller program about funerals; I think it was called Death. According the Penn & Teller, a body in a casket eventually liquefies. In other words, it turns to, for lack of a better word, ooze or goo. I find that really gross. Once you are placed in the crematorium, your flesh is burned away immediately. The reason you stay in the crematory for a few hours is to disintegrate the bones.

Once the lady from the funeral home left, Jan and I went to Kim’s house to get the books from the HAT/TAM library. There were four boxes of books. We loaded up the books and came home. Now I’ve got to figure out what to do with the books. I will probably go through them and weed some of them out. Perhaps I can find someone willing to store them at their house. I already have more books than I have shelf space for. Some shelves are now double stacked.

That afternoon, we walked two miles at TCC West. I used my MP3 player for the first time. It works really well.

The next morning we drove out to Keystone State Park and did the 5 K volkswalk. I was a warm day (warm for January, that is). The walk was my 221st volkswalk. I also picked up the receipts for this year. On the first of the month a group of walkers from the Tulsa Walking Club went out there and walked.

I came home and took a nap and then got ready for Movie Night at the Bradleys. The movie we watched was Transsiberian. It was a mystery kind of movie. Gail had another commitment, so there was no piano duet playing that night. Barbara later said she had nightmares all night. She was still talking about the movie this morning when I picked her up to go to church.

Since the Music CareRing is no longer meeting prior to the Sunday service, I do not have to leave the house as soon as I did before the collapse of the CareRing (the term is supposed to be a play on the word “caring,” I am guessing). Today I gave a ride to Barbara who phoned me before I left. Today’s service was lay led. The air was much colder this morning than yesterday. The speaker talked about the small island of Goree off the coast of Senegal in Africa.