Bavarian Finger Wrestling

So I spent the last few days with a summer cold. Definitely not a normal development, but the summer season has been far from normal. Normally the high around this time of year is in the 100s. Instead, we’ve had rain and 80s…that is just total craziness! Never in my wildest dreams would I think in August that I need to mow the yard…again. It’s usually brown and crunchy right now.

Anyway, I get bored pretty easy when I’m made to rest, so I ventured out online to see what was going on in the world that I may not have seen before. This adventure was very prosperous. I found Bavarian finger wrestling.

You heard that right…a bunch of dudes in lederhosen pulling each other over a table by a small strip of leather. Being a bit ADD, I wondered…did my ancestors participate in this event? I mean, Oswald is either a German or Scottish name. I could be the great, great, great, great grandson of a finger wrestling champion!

I watched a few videos for my amusement. They really get into it. What I didn’t see was if they introduce themselves…you know, like WWE.

“Weighing in at 180 lbs, with an undefeated record of 21-0…here is the reigning…world…champion…Finger Elf!” (use your German and know a band’s name and you’ll get that joke)

Anyway, it was a fun way to pass the time. Maybe it’s time to invest in checking out my relatives of old and find out once and for all who the Oswalds’ were.

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1500 Miles on Foot

1500 Miles on Foot

So we’ve been following a great friend over the past few weeks in his recent expedition and quest to run across the entire country of Mongolia. Communication has been minimal because of the task and because of the limited access to the internet. But recently, photos and messages have been popping up more frequently. From the information, towns have been far and few between and I would imagine that internet access has been hard to come by.

Brian Hunter of Strong to the Finish has started his journey to complete 1500 miles. As of the last report, he has covered approximately 350 km which equates to around 210-215 miles. More plainly, around 8 marathon races…with more to come. Why in the world would somebody do this? Great question. There is always a purpose with this guy.

Go and visit acrossmongolia.com to track his progress and like strongtothefinish.com’s facebook page to get the occasional posts. There you can find out about the two projects he is running for that support Mongolia’s orphans. Also, there are opportunities to join him in the journey by sponsoring a mile. Go check it out right now!

The Tale of WalMart

cartSo this place drives me crazy. I like it because most often it has products that I need at a reasonable price. But lately, the cons have outweighed the pros.

For one, products our family usually use have started to disappear from the shelves and not be carried. Secondly, the employees we’ve encountered have seemed to have a chip on their shoulder and hate their job, which translates into customer service issues. Thirdly, the parking lot. Which leads me to today’s tale.

Every aisle has at least one relatively close place to place your shopping cart where it is not in harms way. However, there has been a problem of epidemic proportions plaguing the parking…lazy people. Often folks unload their groceries and purposefully leave their cart knowing full well that if they turn around and walk 30 paces they could put it away. Lazy, lazy, lazy.

Yesterday, after making a small purchase, I made my way toward my vehicle, weaving in between cars towards the Explorer. A couple was unloading their cart across and over one from my spot. They finished with the last bag and it was now decision time…leave the cart or walk 30 steps. You know what they chose.

The lady pushed the cart, knowing I was walking toward her, right in front of my passenger door. I paused shortly. I looked at the cart. I looked at her. No light bulbs. She ignored me and got in the vehicle. The cart being in my way, I pushed the cart back into their parking spot, put my purchase into the vehicle.

They looked at me like I was the one at fault.

Without hesitation, I closed my passenger door, grabbed their cart and took the 30 paces to the cart return. As I began my way back to the Explorer, I could see a conversation in their vehicle. I wonder what it was about? I would like to think it was along the lines of “How nice of that guy to take our cart for us!” 🙂 I highly doubt it.

This laziness has got to stop somewhere. I find myself taking carts in when I arrive and putting multiples in the cart rack after unloading my own purchases. Why do they do it? Because they can. They are enabled to be lazy because nothing is done about it.

Here is my proposal…Hey WalMart! It’s time to initiate the cart deposit machines! Pay a deposit when you want a cart and get the deposit back when you return it to the proper place. Aldi doesn’t have a cart problem. They proactively have a solution that gets results. Learn from it. Use it. Then maybe people won’t see the WalMart brand and stores as ghetto as easily.

Balancing Act

Fear…I’ve heard it defined as False Evidence Appearing Real. We have the ability to embrace it or the ability to give in to it. It controls us or we take it by the throat and conquer it. Last night, both happened.

Amber and I have said for a long time that we would help the kids learn to ride a bike. Unfortunately, we were much slower than we should have been. Determined to get it done, I bought a training bar that arrived yesterday. I put in on Michele’s bike and prepared myself for a few skinned-knees and a a few wobbly victories.

Michele loves to bike, and had been doing it for so long that her training wheels broke. She borrowed her brother’s bike just to get to ride. Seeing that I was preparing her bike, she got excited at the thought of finally getting onto 2 wheels. I ducked inside to grab a jacket. On my way back, I heard a shrill…it was her.

She had hopped on the bike and took off down the driveway…but it wasn’t the shrill of a fall. She had done it…she was riding her bike.

She quickly showed me how she had learned to coast and now added the pedals. The driveway quickly turned to up and down the street and sidewalk. It was like she had ridden for a long time.

She pulled up beside me and said “Do you want to help me learn?” Laughing, I said “You already know how. How about a ride around the block?”…and of course, a “Yes!” from her.

I later found out that she had been afraid to try without the training wheels. It was a desire she had but chose not to ask to have the extra wheels removed. She was bound and restricted by fear. Yesterday, she overcame that fear and is now among the 2-wheel bikers of the world…and dad didn’t even have to help.

Today, I encourage you to take fear by the throat and defeat it. Unleash the potential that God has placed in you and move forward in victory.

So we are now 3 of 4 without training wheels. Michael. You are next…

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Launch!

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Come on in! We’re glad you’re here. Are you ready for an adventure? Saddle-up your horses, put on your running shoes, and strap on your parachute because you’ve got your ticket to ride on the this blog for the long haul! Today we set aside our daily boring routine and move forward in this race called life. We strive to make a difference daily and live life with no regrets. We choose to live dangerously in this life that God has given us and, through Christ’s help, make waves in our local community and the world.

Will you join us?