Thy Blog Be Done


let go and let God

Many 12-step programs tell you to “Let Go and Let God”.

But, as my big sister often reminds me, even when we do so, we frequently freak out and claw stuff right back.

Case in point…

I recently took a deep breath, said some prayers, and moved the HOGS Blog to a cheaper New Zealand server and domain registrar.

I was advised this process would be simple and seamless.

What could possibly go wrong?

So, to prepare, I had this kind of conversation with the Lord.

Me: “Lord, after five years and almost 400 posts, HogsAteMySister has not made me rich or famous, as I thought we had planned, and the future is not looking so crash hot.  I no longer have the energy to repurpose the content into Amazon ebooks, like my butthead writer friend in Oregon whose initials may or may not be Kris Wehrmeister. Not that I begrudge her success, because she deserves it.  She is amazing. The big, fat, talented cow.  Sorry, Lord.  Anyway, I decided to once again put this blog in Your hands.  So, if during the change of hosting companies, you allow the blog to plummet into the internet abyss, I will take that as a sign that You think the blog sucks canal water, okay? 


Me: On the other hand, Lord, if the transfer goes well, and there were to be a few positive signs like, say, bales of money falling from the sky, or maybe a few parades in front of my house, that could be seen as a sign of Your approval, to carry on, You know?


Me:  “Okay, then.”

So I Let Go and Let God and Stepped Out in Faith and made the internet changes.

And the blog tumbled right into Abyss City.

If you Googled, all you got was — “page suspended”.

Since I had totally given the whole deal to God, I said, “Fine, Lord, Thy will be done.”

And I was totally at peace.

Until I started tiger-clawing everything back.

Calling and emailing and DM’ing hosting companies and various internet boffin

And reclarifying the situation with God.

Me: “Lord, just to be clear, if You REALLY REALLY REALLY want all my precious words, and the equity I have built up in this blog, over FIVE LONG YEARS, to just go POOF, Your will be done… But, having said that, Lord, I don’t think you meant for me to type in the WRONG street address for my domain name renewal which, come to find out, was a VERY BAD THING.  And since You have no hands or feet (or laptops) on Earth, but mine, it only makes sense that I should use the skills you have given me in a last ditch effort to get out of the stupid Abyss of Internet Doom.  But if I fail, and the HOGS blog is dead, Thy Will be done.  


Me: Lord, I’m taking Your silence as an indication that I should try one more time.  

And thus began the Period of Insane Clawing Back that reached right down the Internet into America, Philippines, Australia, New Zealand and who knows where else?

Then I was exhausted and defeated. I accepted that HOGS was a goneburger.

But then the boffins called and said “give us 3-5 days.”

During this time of testing, I didn’t check the Internet at all, because I had agreed the blog was totally in the Lord’s court.

OK, maybe I checked once.  Twice, tops.  Because I am nothing if not a hypocrite.

And then, boom, HogsAteMySister came back to life.

I am not sure what that means.

I do NOT see this as a Divine Seal of Blog Endorsement.

It’s probably just another lesson in faith, e.g. “Stop with the clawing back, already.”

I am still too sick and tired (see angry chest badgers) to edit five years’ worth of content into Amazon e-books that might be salable to Okie Boomers or Curmudgeons or Crack Puppy owners.

So I will have a think and pray some more.

Me: BTW, Lord, sorry about the claw marks all over everything. But you know how I am…

God: :-)


Pathetic Sick Man Alert Involving Angry Chest Badgers

Yes, we are aware that one of our high school friends is recovering from a very, very serious back problem, and that the global economy is being dragged down the tubes by China.

But the blog is a sick man, and we need to whine.

Shut up.

We are now on on Day 18 of Killer Horror Chest Gunk That Is Not Flu, But Which Is Way Worse Than Ebola With Angry Chest Badgers.

We are now on our second doctor and third antibiotic.

And we are pretty much coughing our head off today because Doctor Number Two said that, most of the time, cough medicine is a very bad idea.

Which means this blog has spent $45 on three bottles of cough medicine that, turns out, has actually thrilled the 10 billion killer horror virus germs in our chest and bronchial tubes, which feel like angry chest badgers on crack.

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So Many Miracles Surrounding My Mom’s Death

miracles happen


(Editor’s Note: After the previous post on abortion, I’m not sure how to get back to funny.  So I decided to publish this piece about “my miracles”.  I wrote this and three other stories as part of what I’d hoped would be a book on miracles. That did not happen, so this will.)


One of the hardest things I ever did was emigrate to New Zealand in 1993, but that’s what was required by my young family.

My Mom had a chronic, debilitating lung disease that not even the Centers for Disease Control could diagnose.  I knew she was not going to get better.  So moving halfway around the world was really hard.

Thankfully, we got to stay with Mom and my step-dad C.B. for about a month while waiting for NZ Immigration to give us the go-ahead.

The delays and red tape about drove my Missus crazy.  But I saw it as a time of grace that gave me precious extra time to spend with Mom.  This was enormously important to me, because I didn’t know if I’d ever see her again.

We made the most of our time, cherishing the simple things.  Mom and I would take short walks, talk, eat, play with my 4-year-old son, and laugh a lot.  Then at night, I would beat Mom.  Either using a hand-held pounding machine or the cup of my hand against her back.

Afterward, Mom would work as hard as she could to cough up the phlegm that was trying to kill her.  The massive nightly effort would leave her breathless and exhausted.  For the rest of the night, she’d sit quietly, breathing oxygen, trying to recover, and watching her son, his wife, and her grandson who were soon to move to the other side of the world.

You can imagine the flood of tears when we left for the airport.

But my tiny Mom was tough.  Despite her mysterious disease, she hung in there.  After we got settled into New Zealand, Mom, her oxygen bottle and C.B. came for a visit.  It gave her peace to see where we lived and to be reassured that we were safe and had a good life.

When she went back to the States, Mom’s chronic lung condition got progressively worse.  It weighed heavily on my mind, and my heart, and created an impossible dilemma for me.  I was a senior manager in a small P.R. firm, and the sole bread-winner in my family. I could not jet home every time Mom’s health took a turn for the worse.

A dozen times a day, I’d ask myself, “When should I go home?  What if Mom dies before I get there?  What if I go home and she gets better, and I fly back to New Zealand, and then she gets worse again?  What if I can’t get the time off?  What if I have to quit my job to go?  How will I pay for my family’s needs?”

I prayed countless rosaries, seeking answers and peace.  Even so, the constant worry was wearing me down.  I just did not know what to do.

Then one Sunday afternoon in 1995, I was in my bedroom in New Zealand, ironing my shirts, staring out the second-story window, worrying about Mom, praying, and sighing to the depths of my weary soul.

That’s when I *heard a woman’s voice say, “Go home.”

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We Were Lied To About Abortion. We Have to Stop

(A very serious one about abortion)


Oh little baby, you’ll never cry, nor will you hear a sweet lullabye. 

Oh unborn child, if you only knew just what your momma was plannin’ to do.

You’re still a-clingin’ to the tree of life, but soon you’ll be cut off before you get ripe.

When I was a senior at Norman High School, in 1974, I remember happily buying the new Seals & Crofts album, then getting really angry at the lyrics to the cover song.

It was the year after the Supreme Court ruled on Roe v. Wade, five years after Woodstock’s “sex, drugs and rock’n’roll”, and six years after Pope Paul VI released his encyclical Humanae Vitae (Of Human Life).

I was a heathen and a virgin.

The LAST thing I wanted was some “anti-abortion” musicians moralizing their way into my bedroom.

Turns out, nobody else did either.

We were Baby Boomers, and it was all about us, not some unborn child.

Sadly, that sweet song could do precious little to hold back the abortion tsunami.

So now, 42 years after Roe v Wade, these are the *facts:

  • more than 77 million babies have been aborted in America
  • so far this year, 646,283 babies have been aborted in the land of free and the home of the brave
  • 193,941 of these babies were aborted by Planned Parenthood, America’s biggest abortionist
  • Recently, Planned Parenthood managers were caught sipping wine and talking about “crushing above and below” so organs from aborted babies could be harvested and sold
  • Planned Parenthood apologized for a manager’s “tone”
  • The Senate fell three votes short of defunding Planned Parenthood

Lord Have Mercy

All of this has made me ask, Dear Lord, how did we get to this point?

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Trying to Measure Up to Big Dog Michael Deaver


I never knew radio great Paul Harvey, but sometimes I can hear his voice.

I always wanted to do great things, which is probably why I started out as a reporter.

I had a good nose for news and was pretty good at finding the truth.

But, as it turns out, I was also blind as a bat at times, blinded by my ego, and nowhere near greatness.

In 1992-1993, I was a new consultant in Dallas with “the largest privately owned P.R. firm in the world.”

My biggest client, a real estate giant, had asked us to find a hotshot speaker for their Annual Meeting.

I wanted General Norman Schwarzkopf, one of the great military giants of the 20th century, and the Ultimate Alpha Male.

I just knew my real estate Big Dog clients would LOVE hanging out with Stormin’ Norman.

But my choice was not astute.

My boss, however, was astute, and recommended former long-time Reagan aide Michael Deaver.

This did not sit well with me.

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Join the Army and See the World… or Buy a Cute Little Camper Van in New Zealand!


*What could possibly go wrong?

The Missus and I need a big house so we both can have our own space.

And in the land of semi-retirement, you watch your money pretty closely.

So, of course, we just bought a little camper van.

In our defense, it’s not really a camper van.

Certainly not like the big one that two families squished into 20 years ago to tour all of New Zealand.

That one had eight berths and a stove and fridge and pooper and shower.

That kind if serious camper van now rents for about $400 per day.

So, when you throw in insurance, diesel and campground fees, etc, it costs about $9,000 to get our of your driveway.

Which poses a dilemma.

How do you quityerbitchin’ about living in the most beautiful country in the world yet never actually seeing any of it?

The answer came last week from above. Or at least the internets.

I was looking for a cheap car, using my super-braniac search engine words “moving to Australia.”

And poof.

There, among all the actual cars, popped up the cutest little camper van you ever saw.

I mean, it’s called a Mazda Bongo Friendee.

How could that not be a thing of happy destiny?

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The Best Part About Torrential Rains & Flooding in New Zealand Is…

Not our actual gutter. But close…

… Oh, we don’t know, there are so many things to choose from.

Probably the best thing about torrential rains is when the Missus dispatches the blog to our house’s slick metal roof, at night, when it is pitch freaking black, to clear out the gutters, because her bat-like sensors just KNOW they are clogged.

No, actually, the best part is when the Missus — being all kinds of helpful, as the blog was risking life and limb on the slick metal roof, at night, in a winter downpour — hits me right between the eyes with a 10,000-candlepower spotlight.

Because when you are soaking wet, and crouching on the very edge of the slick metal roof, at night, scooping crap out of the gutter by hand, you really want to be blinded by the light.

And get bonus points for retinal detachments and vertigo.

Yes, all were just awesome.

But, in retrospect, the best thing was — when the blog had shed his soaking wet blue jeans and goose-down puffer jacket, and was just about to climb into a hot bathtub — hearing a siren shriek from the basement.

One with a Singaporean accent; able to penetrate 12-inches of reinforced concrete and/or my forehead.

A siren song that meant that the basement was flooding, and that having a soggy, frostbitten butt was the very least of the blog’s worries.

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