Friday, December 26, 2008

"And the Stockings were no longer.........

What a wonderful Christmas! We didn't get the new snow we had
hoped for... Taylor was surprised... A new Wii from Grandma and
goodies from mom and dad... Webkins to everything a little lady
could desire.
The Spirit was truely with us this day....

Monday, December 22, 2008

Christmas Program/Dinner

Well, we had our Christmas dinner and Sunday programs this weekend. It must have been a sequel to last year.... Again I sat patiently while the wife and daughter ate dinner, (I never eat at functions like this, people are getting used to me being this way. Between not knowing who prepared what and cooked what and what was left out all day, etc., and then everyone and their kids spitting and sneezing all over everything, no thanks.
Then the Bishop had the task of judging the Ginger Bread houses. There were only five entries that the Bishop was tasked to judge. Being the Bishop he split up several second and third places. Not a popular decision with the members but nevertheless it was done. My wife, mother-in-law and daughter had put in a lot time on ours but only tied for third..
Taylor L. got her Santa picture taken with a friend of mine in a Santa Suit. Then we went home and fired up the fireplace.
I was pleasantly surprised during church. In eight years here this was by far the best program we have had. My wife even told me I looked like I was tearing up during one of the songs. My narraration went well, I thought, and the wife told me everyone came up to her during then next two meetings and made a big deal out of it.... I didn't bother to stick around and bailed out of the closest door and headed home. After four times you would think they would get my name right. Last year it was Ed this year it was Allan. I don't remember what it was before that. Next year if asked I'll make sure I proof the program prior to it actually happening. I was pleased at the Choir, they sounded great and it all went off with only one hitch... Because of the time I put into the Toy's for Tot's program every year, (a record year this year) I was unable to "run through" the program until Saturday morning... It was basically me talking between a few songs. I didn't even know there was a flute in one song and a Cello in another until the program.
It has to be interesting to be a Bishop and deal with all this. I've been blessed with a wife who understands thats a calling I would never ever except... I have not the patience nor the time...
We have a great one thank the Lord. Most of the Bishops I've been around for the past twenty years are either rouge or self serving egotists... Up against someone with my personality is like going against a buzz saw... same with the Stake Presidents, but usually they are worse.
So, kudo's to the program.... Christmas in a few days then were out of here for a week or so.
Down to see the inlaws in Phoenix...
(footnote) my wife's Alumni U. of A. spanked my Alumni BYU in the Las Vegas Bowl Saturday night.) but more of that in a future blog....
God Bless,

Friday, December 19, 2008

December Birthday

Well, I had another birthday this month, Sagittarius I'm called... I wanted to take you all to my favorite place in the world. A little lake called Black's Lake, about 18 miles east of Vail, Colorado where the Condo is.
I go there as often as I can and never want to come back...Here is why! I just doesn't get any better than this.....

Privacy Observed

I was reading the local Las Vegas newspaper today and came across a car dealership article that was making a big deal about hiring, helping and selling to Veteran's. The usual players were in the picture in front of the dealership.
It was only a few years ago that I was honored to attend a special meeting as the Nevada Department Commander of the American Legion to recognize this dealership for there contribution to the Veteran's for their involvement and especially for donating two Vehicles for the Memorial Golf Tournament that year for the "Hole in One" event. Although no one won either vehicle the Dealership was well advertised. Numerous plaques were awarded at the meeting and I stressed that having this recognition for either the American Legion or Marine Corps League hanging on their office walls would certainly and immediately persuade a prospective buyer, especially if he/her were a veteran, to change their mind and buy from that dealership. Now with the Iraq war well into the sixth year, they decided to play on that helpful hint.
I was relieved but not surprised to see my name no where in print in the article although I personally made this particular dealership the Flagship of Veteran appreciation. I was glad to see them continue to support our men in Uniform... Hiring them, selling them trucks and of course continuing the "Toy's for Tot's" program I started with them that Christmas. And since they graciously chose to omit my name and give credit where credit is due, I will do the same for them.
Semper FI

(I didn't play in the golf tournament that year. A hole in one for me would have constituted a Miracle) Besides I'm a Mercedes guy... (I actually put "Golf" on my list of endangered Species several years ago, right after I took my wife out golfing for the first time, I gave up and caddied for her after the sixth hole..) (UGH!!!)

Wednesday, December 17, 2008

"A White Christmas" in Las Vegas

Wow, it only happens about every three years or so. A white Christmas! We have been blessed in this arid part of the country to have snow fall twice in one week. Driving around today Christmas shopping reminded me of up in Cedar City, Utah in the winter time, or Provo during the Holidays, snow flurries, snowmen, snowball fights! Ah yes, Utah, my second home, came to Las Vegas this year...
With all the problems in the world, and as we are certainly upon the last days this is a beautiful gift from our Savior. We are truly blessed...

Tuesday, December 16, 2008

Mormonism & Consequences

I have found that there are two parts to Mormonism. Part A. and Part B.

Part A - Those people who are devout in their belief in the doctrine and teachings of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day-Saints, that faithfully follow the teachings and the laws of the gospel, who's morals and ethics are indisputable, commitments unmovable, belief's concrete. Live their Temple laws and covenants.. Pay their tithes faithfully, follow the Prophet and live their life in a manner pleasing to the Lord.
Part B- Those who show up sometime between the start and finish of Church services pretending to be Part A.

One would wonder why there are two distinctly different pictures at the start of this blog. One of course being the Book of Mormon (self explanatory) and the other of me preparing to depart in a PA-28 Cherokee-Warrior for Wyoming to "Old Faithful" on a vacation trip with the family. The difference? None! One would need to read and study the Book of Mormon in order to belong to the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day-Saints, following the teachings and lessons enclosed, as would one would read and study the Ground School Flight manual as well as other ancillary books, such as the Bible or the Aerodynamics manual of flying, other LDS Doctrine or AIM/FAR manual for regulations of legal flight. Both accomplishing a final and proud goal. Both becoming LDS and a private pilot require dedication, knowledge, direction and faith. Another accomplishment of both is the reasonable acceptance of Consequences...
As I sit week after week in Sacrament meeting I am awed at the lack of simple respect shown to our Savior. It's evident even in some of the leaders. Adults reading magazines, playing with their PDA's, texting on their cell phones and letting their children run amok in the Chapel. Young men wearing tattoo's, young women dressed like they are leaving for a school dance, steadily texting throughout the meeting, pausing only to grab a piece of bread or sip of water passed through the congregation. Cell phones going off during the Sacrament. What is going on in my beloved Mormon Church???
It's simple, like non-Mormon's and non-Christians, members although taught weekly, forget or simply ignore the "Consequences".
They sit in church because they really have no self awareness of what is really going on in the world. We sit in an era where the so called "Muslim" religion is fanatically trying to overtake the world. We have a rouge President elect taking office on January 20th 2009, a man nevertheless inexperienced or worthy of this office, isn't even a Natural born citizen of the United States of America. Lest the "sheep" (see Major the sheepdog blog) sleep and go through the motions daily, weekly and monthly unaware that these are the last days. It has never been so obvious in any time in my life.
Those who ignor or disbelieve in a higher being, a supreme being or be it a God, simply exist day to day with the belief that their only consequence for anything evil, wrong or unrighteous, is simply retain a good lawyer and hope for a lenient judge. On the other side of death, they sense no other consequence, for the pain of being accountable for anything is simply daunting to them.
With LDS people the "Repentance" rule of thumb has become cliche, and runs in accordance with the Catholic religion when you simply go talk to a Priest each weekend, get a few "our fathers" and "Hail Marys" and your good to go... It simply isn't like that at all.
The scriptures are very specific about accountability and consequences...
Like flying a rotary or fixed wing aircraft, you make similar commitments, and objectives reaching to be perfect not only in your daily behavior but as a pilot. The difference is that unlike religion, there is an innate reality when your flying. Sin and you go to a Bishop and get a hand or two slapped. When you err in flight the consequences and accountability are often fatal.
The Helicopter is somewhat less forgiving. Because I love the use of analogies, I use the Helicopter as someone who has "gone through" the Mormon Temple, made commitments and covenants and wear the undergarments required to attend. When you screw up in a Helicopter, the only one your going to be responsible to is yourself and your work and studying the dynamics of flight. Unfortunately, when you lose engine power in a Helicopter it flies like a 20 case Coke machine. The consequences are much more harsh... More deliberate and often more devastating.. Most often Fatal...
On the other hand, a fixed wing aircraft is a little more forgiving. Without engine power, you still have options and forward air speed to allow you to often but not always recover from your "sins" in flight error. If you can regroup "repent" of your errors, you are often spared of the ultimate death on earth. I have often after a quiet, warm and peaceful flight used the term, "it's time to get busy" with turning downwind, to base and then ultimately onto final. A lot is going on and your focus is everything. Unfortunately, LDS people seem to shun off the consequences that might accompany stupid mistakes in their daily life. Sadly they cannot recover and are horribly reminded of those consequences when it's too late. For those who have "gone" through the LDS Temples, their options are at best less. Their consequences and accountabilities are far higher and far greater. Thus, the Helicopter falling out of the sky...
Why is it then that people take flying and the consequences of living, breathing and eating and sleeping flight school so seriously when they become pilots but as Mormons they seem to be undaunted by the consequences of their behavior here upon the earth, when ultimately the end results in either an earthy or spiritual death???? It's the same...Dead is Dead.
I no longer attend meetings other than Sacrament. Perhaps it's time to forget about what happened thousands of years ago, or fifty years ago, maybe not worry about what Abraham and Isaac were doing so long ago and start worrying about what is going on now.
Perhaps, we should be going to church and teaching the fundamentals of Church, respect for the Savior, Reverence, Spirituality, dress standards, Child rearing. Instead of talks about what was. We had better start looking into the next four years.... Revelation's is clear in it's prophecy's. We are truly in the last days. Our Constitution hangs by a thread, there are wars and rumors of wars, un-natural weather events.
We had better wake up and understand that although we might not crash and burn into the side of a mountain anytime soon, we are headed for a spiritual death worse than anything Mortally significant on this earth.
This is the real deal.... One day you will stand before God and answer for your actions....
will you be prepared for those consequences???
God Bless,
A. Lane

Wednesday, December 3, 2008

"Who will Protect America?"

Airspace Violation

Sent by a Marine Pilot

In addition to communicating with the local air traffic control
facility, aircraft are required to give the Iranian Air Defense Radar
(military) a ten minute 'heads up' that they will be transiting Iranian
This is a common procedure for commercial aircraft and involves giving
them your call sign, transponder code, type aircraft, and points of
origin and destination.
I just flew with a guy who overheard this conversation on the VHF Guard
(emergency) frequency 121.5 MHz while flying from Europe to Dubai .

It's too good not to pass along.

The conversation went something like this...
Air Defense Radar: 'Unknown aircraft at (location unknown), you are in
Iranian airspace. Identify yourself.'

Aircraft: 'This is a United States aircraft. I am in Iraqi airspace.'
Air Defense Radar: 'You are in Iranian airspace.

If you do not depart our airspace we will launch interceptor aircraft!'
Aircraft: 'This is a United States FA-18 fighter. Send 'em up!' "l'll Wait!"
Air Defense Radar: (no response ... total silence)

Marines never ask; "How many of the Enemy are there?" they Ask "Where are the Enemy?"
Semper FI