Thursday, October 30, 2014

Hammy's come to visit

Susanna's dog Hammy is stying with us for six days while she and Megan go on a trip.  A terrier hound mix who generally is concerned with what's in it for Hammy.  He's the boss of Teddy; everybody's the boss of Teddy.  Dennis said this morning that both of them insisted on eatch each other's breakfast.

Hammy loves having a backyard though it's raining.  Ilana said that Hammy probably thought that Teddy was a rich kid because he had a backyard.

But they seem to be getting along.  Teddy, being submissive doesn't mind sharing his bed.

Wednesday, October 29, 2014

My wedding officiant

Another new meaning from events from the past.

When I was planning to marry my husband in 1976, back in the day, 38 years ago, I pondered who should marry us. Religious affiliation tensions flowed in from both sides.  Not serious, not dealbreakers but still there.  My parents, wanted a rabbi and that was fine with Dennis, and me, but a lot of rabbis won't marry when one is not a Jew plus there was nobody in Sacramento that came to mind.  We did do a blessing thing at the Friday night service.  Dennis' parents, though not churchgoeers, started making Christian noises. 

The whole wedding-industrial complex did not exist at that time.  Thank goodness.  You could not go onto the internet, like Ilana did, to find a compatible wedding officiant.

I pondered and thought, what to do, himmm.  The, one day at the work, it came to me in a flash.  Grandfather Beittel!  Yes!  That was it!  He was an eminent minister, Congregational or something.  The families were so close; I continue to be close to that whole family.  He was like a member of the family.  My parents wouldn't object; Dennis' parents would think it was ok.  I really liked him.  Perfect!  I vaguely knew that he had been the president of some small colleges.  In the south or something.  That was about it.

I asked him and he did agree to marry us.  Now I find out that he was very involved with the civil rights movement and spoke out freely.  Which sometimes caused him to lose his job.

I happened upon a PhD dissertation "A Beacon of Light:Tougaloo during the Presidency of Adam Daniel Beittel (1960-1964).  I admit I have not read it all yet.  But I sent it out to members of the Beittel family who sent some interesting feedback.  I contact the author and passed on their comments.

Interesting times.

We were married in Dennis parents' living room and then had a larger reception.  Though we had most all of the trappings, nothing like what's generally done now.  And I know as two of my children have had conventional weddings in the last year or so.

Tuesday, October 28, 2014

California Charl

My brother moved to the San Francisco Bay Area last spring.  Yes, the housing prices are massively inflated on the Peninsula but he could do it.  He moved there to take a new job.  Finally after many months he has returned to his photography.

He's been working a lot with low light.  This picture (which I have decreased the size) shows the hills above South San Francisco taken about 10:30 pm.

Monday, October 27, 2014


A picture from a facebook posting reproduced in the Seattle Times.  The crummy photoshop additions are mine.  A group shot from the homecoming dance at Marysville-Pilchuck high school a week or two ago.  Young people all dressed up, looking good, smiling faces.  Likely many from the native Tulalip community that practically borders the high school.

As all know, a terrible shooting at the high school which now has left 3 dead and three more seriously injured.  Bullet wounds to the head, very very serious.  One young girl died last night from her injuries.

The shooter (also died) circled in green.  The young girl circled in black died at the scene, those in red still seriously injured.  One girl, not in the picture died last night.

It can all look so good.....

If that young man had not had access to a gun, this would not have happened.

Sunday, October 26, 2014

Reading the gospels

That is what I'm doing; reading the gospels.  That's the class that I'm taking.  A lot of reading and I know I'm just skimming through this.

I've always thought the Christian symbols and the pictures held great power.  Especially for me who is not a Christian.  btw for those that wish to convert you, you just look them straight in the eye and say "I am a Jew" and they leave you alone.  Too far gone, beyond the pale, foreign.  Who knows?

When I see a cross or a Jesus, my first reaction is stress and agitation.  Run!  Get away!  Fright.  Oppression.  These people will hurt you.  Don't go near.  My husband was a bit surprised by my reaction.  Once, a long time ago when we had adult education in the religious school (which my kids did not attend too many years, just couldn't pull it off), I borrowed some Christian items, a wooden cross, a Jesus picture and I wanted to explore the feelings that these items triggered in us.

But everyone was too agitated to even think about it.  My program failed.  I think that people unconsciously wanted to distance themselves from anything that looked like that.  They couldn't listen.

So as I'm reading the Gospel of John, I challenged myself to put a Jesus picture on my blog.  Ooooooh, a tough one.  A lot of language so far of Jesus challenging maybe even bullying people to believe him. At least in the first half or so.

So I looked for a Jesus picture.  He's often portrayed as a white man with a beard and long hair.  I wanted to show him declaring and teaching, saying.

Friday, October 24, 2014

Marysville-Pilchuck High School

The story of the day in our region.  Another school shooting.  How many do there have to be before guns are not in people's hands.  People who want to exert their power over others by shooting them.

How close am I to Marysville Pilchuck high school?  27 miles.  It's not close.  Have I been there?  Yes, during softball days.  It's a big school in a small town.  North of Everett, near the Tulalip tribe.

Today, there was a shooting at this high school.  Two students died (including the shooter) and 4 in very serious condition.  Shot in the head, very bad, very very bad.  You can never be the same, very tragic.  Sounds like the responders handled the situation appropriately.  Securing the school, evacuating the students.  They bussed the students to a local church where families met them.  Everyone in a state of shock and trauma.  A lot of people where Dennis works live north so many left as soon as they heard about it.

The Seattle Times website is not responding.  I was driving around today so I listened to the radio coverage.  This afternoon, they hadn't identified the victims, not publicly.

Certainly this is a picture you never want to see.  Group of students being escorted out of school by a police guy with scary looking gun ...looking like a machine gun.  The panicked frightened parents, the traumatized teens.  What if you didn't hear from your kid, could they be one at the hospital?

From the Seattle Times website

Wednesday, October 22, 2014


I'm looking, looking looking.for

Jane DeAngelo
Dan Schaeffer

children of Daniel A. Schaeffer and Elizabeth Reich Schaeffer.  descendants of Louis Weil for my cemetery project.  I think I may have found them, though I have not got a response yet.  Interesting that I found them through low quality extractor kind of websites.   Wesites that combine information from elsewhere putting things together making it look like they really know.  But sometimes I've found that there's hints, people that are put together in places at times where it starts to make sense.

Even used one of those automated real estate sites to realize that Esther Weil, one generation back lived with her daughter and her husband in a house in Greenwich.

For awhile yesterday, I was following another Dan Schaeffer, an Assistant Attorney General in Hartford.  But it just wasn't falling together, he was too young.  He lived with his mother, it didn't look like he had any children.  Just didn't hang.

I'm also looking for John Gregory Speed who wrote the dissertation on A. D. Beittel and Tougaloo College.  Initial efforts seem to show a sex offender so that's not so great.  I hope that does not pan out.  He clearly wrote this dissertation without contacting the family.  I have some great comments for him.  I had written him at the University of Southern Mississippi but he did not reply.

Even though I haven't quite got what I need yet, I did find something else. The web is still good for that.  Listening to some great django music from the DeAngelo trio, father and sons maybe from Pennsylvania.  I recommend them!

Plus I think I have a dog sitter.  Yay!

Tuesday, October 21, 2014

New testament legos

Ya gotta love Lego lessons.

This week is heavy reading for my Gospels class.  The professor makes very complete comprehensive slides.  But instead of going through them in class, he assumes that you've already reviewed them, he just wants discussion and questions.

This we're doing Matthew PLUS Luke-Acts.  That's a LOT.  I can barely get through them.  Actually I won't.  Plus chapters in a difficult commentary book.  For tomorrow's lecture, he has 125 slides!  Since I'm hitting a lot of this cold... I've spent a bunch of time, well spent.  There's a lot to learn.

Despite my general antipathy towards Christianity.

Also reading some commentary regarding the Narrow Gate, Matthew 7:13.  Nobody is breaking my way.  Not one has come close to relating the Narrow Gate to mitzrayim, the narrow place, the personal narrow place.  Could be one of my ideas that goes nowhere.  I've had those before.

But who can resist lego people.  Are they all men?  This guy definitely looks masculine.  He's acting out some people fraudulent representing the Jesus movement and what happens to them.

Monday, October 20, 2014


The narrow place.

I'm taking a class on The Gospels.  Jesus Christ and all that.  I'm hitting them cold.  Certainly I am familiar with Christianity but I never sat down and read them.  About 25 people in the class, I'm the only access student, the other one bailed.

As I read Matthew, (and we have to read them in a hurry), one set of verses near the end of the Sermon on the Mount shouted out at me:

13"Enter by  the narrow gate; for wide is the gate and broad is the way that leads to destruction, and there are many who go by it.. 14"Because narrow is the gate and difficult is the way which leads to life and there are few who find it.

Since, much of the gospels were oral at the beginning, maybe performed at the Passover Seder.  The Jesus movement started out as a Jewish sect.  I thought, he's referring to Mitzrayim, the narrow place.

The seder features mitzrayim meaning the constrictions that we all feel.  We have to overcome mitzrayim, the narrow difficult place, to come into the promised land.  I have one of the books that compare the synoptic gospels.  The narrow gate is not in Mark, and in Luke, it's used in a different context, that the gate is narrow so few are let in.  Many try but few succeed.   The Christian websites, talk about believing in Jesus as savior gets you in the narrow gate.

In the Jewish tradition, Moses had to go through mitzrayim, and so do we all have to struggle in the narrow place.

I brought it up in class.  The professor, a senior scholar, likes it.  His question, would this narrow gate, this narrow place, have been part of the Passover seder in First Century CE?

That's hard to figure out!!

In other news, I talked to J, widow of one of my people on the L.P. Weil line and she gave me a lot of information.  Yay!  Now I know more information about Elizabeth Reich aka Betty Schaeffer, but I can't find her either.  It's just a step.