So can you secede from a town?

September 25, 2008 3 comments

We recently looked at  a very nice home and quickly ruled it out because it was the last house inside town limits.  With town water, sewer, and taxes, it added over $200 per month to the cost.  So it made me wonder, can you secede from a town?  A quick Google search showed me that I was not alone in my thoughts.   It has been done by at least one condominium complex in Pennsylvania and is being considered by another in New York.  (http://query.nytimes.com/gst/fullpage.html?res=9B0DEFDA1431F93AA35752C1A961948260)

My question is can one homeowner secede?  There have been many towns that want to secede from their state.  I know there are advantages to being part of a town and that those advantages come at a price, and for me, they are not a good value. 

My question goes much deeper than just pure economics.  What about political and regulatory issues?  I am, for the most part,  a far right social conservative but I have very libertarian views on property ownership.  I have a hard time paying the town a fee so that they will allow me to make improvements on my property.  Uh, thank you?  I understand the need for safety and good citizenship but we have become this nanny state society where everyone must be protected from themselves and have government watch over every move.  I have said it before and I will say it again, at the very least, our forefathers would be disgusted at what our country has become.  I fear that they would label us all Tories.  I find that my desire for independence does not fit well with municipal living. 

So, can someone legally secede from a town?

Gymnastics Season

September 23, 2008 Leave a comment

My girls had their mock meet on Sunday.  This is going to be a good season.  This year’s mock meet was a far cry from last year where one of my daughters was ready to quit half way through the rotations.  This year, I saw grace and poise in their faces.  They were encouraging and reassuring the first year girls.  Oh yeah, their scores were much higher, also. 

I don’t want to minimize the importance of their scores or winning.  Being successful and doing your best is a major component of youth sports but it is only one component.  Winning at all costs at this level is just insane.  You can always find those parents that are flipping out if their kid is not the fastest, the stongest, or the best.  Those poor kids will be burnt out by age 16 or earlier. 

What I saw this Sunday reminded me of what is good about youth sports.  The lessons that these boys and girls are learning are not easily taught in a classroom.  I have seen a huge increase in my girls’ confidence, discipline, and self-reliance.  Their ability to follow directions has increased and they can now push beyond what they think they are capable of and actually find their limits. 

They will win some medals along the way and have a whole lot of fun.  Not a bad way to learn.

New Gymnastics Season Gears Up This Weekend

September 20, 2008 Leave a comment

This weekend, our gym has their annual mock meet.  It’s just our gymnast and a judge.  The girls (and this year, the boys) go through all the motions of a real meet on their home turf.  My girls are competing for the second year and will again be on the level 4 team. 

My oldest is putting more pressure on herself this year because she is now a “veteran” on the team.  There’s a fine line between striving for excellence and fretting over being good enough and I am trying my best to define that line for her.  She has made it clear that last year it was fun to compete but this year, winning is part of the fun. 

My younger daughter still seems oblivious to the whole competition thing.  She works hard and loves the sport.  She loves getting up on the podium, but doesn’t really dwell on it before the meets.  Her biggest goal is pleasing her coach.  There’s no sign of that changing. 

I certainly don’t know the intricacies of gymnastics scoring but I know that my girls have worked very hard this summer and they look much stronger, confident, and graceful.  Quite frankly, if they finish in last place as good as they look in practice, I’d be pleased.

Josh Howard, Let Me Help You Out

September 19, 2008 1 comment

I know everyone is dumping on Josh Howard right now.  I don’t want to do that.  I actually want to help him out.  First, let me thank him for being honest with us.

Josh, do you feel like the world is closing in around you?  Do you need to get away?  After you clear up this little drag racing trial, why don’t you take a little trip.  I found a place that would suit you.  You won’t have to worry about being harassed about your comments about The National Anthem.  In fact, you will be held in high esteem.  If only you played baseball instead of basketball, they might even adopt you.  Just go to http://www.cubalinda.com/ and book a flight.  You’ll feel right at home.

Unfortunately, Howard has the right to make disparaging comments because of the thousands of men and women gave their lives to defend his freedom.  The very poem that became our national anthem was birthed in a battle for that freedom.  I realize that one song could never fully reflect the deep love and commitment that so many of us have for this great nation, but I can’t think of any other song that comes close.  People risk their lives to get into this country, albeit illegally. 

Josh, try what I do when I celebrate this fine song and all that it represents.  Keep your mouth shut, stand up straight, and think about those brave soldiers who served us, the brave forefathers that faced tortuous deaths, the freedoms that you enjoy, and the God that gave us the rights that we are guaranteed.  If you don’t want to do that, I’d suggest that you make that little getaway destination a permanent relocation.

Ed Hochuli, Norv Turner, and Personal Responsibility

September 18, 2008 Leave a comment

Ah, the NFL is back.  I love football.  It is by far my favorite spectator sport.  Two weeks into the new season and there is finally something besides Brett Favre and Tom Brady to talk about.  Official Ed Hochuli blew a call that allowed the Denver Broncos to complete an amazing comeback in stunning fashion, 39-38.  As usual, I found a life lesson in this not quite so tragic life altering event.

Norv Turner, the coach for the San Diego Chargers went nuts.  Sports commentators and fans have suggested everything from job termination to fines to water-boarding for Ed Hochuli.  True, if Hochuli made the right call, the Chargers recover the fumble and win the game.  However, they still allowed the Broncos to score the touchdown AND the two point conversion after the call. 

So Norv, here’s my thoughts.  Everyone including Hochuli knew the call was bad.  As injust and wrong as it was, the call could not be overturned.  It was the situation that you and your team had to deal with.  It was up to you and your team to not allow someone else’s mistakes to control your life.  You did not.  Move on. 

All of us must deal with things that are beyond our control.  What we can control is how we respond.  You can live your life being a victim and allowing other people and circumstances to control your life or you can choose to rise above those circumstances.  Greatness is not achieved by falling down to adversity but by prevailing over it.  Imagine the locker room had the Chargers stood up and won the game despite the bad call.  Imagine how they would respond the next time they were in a close game and on their heels.  Sadly, for the Chargers and for so many of us, all we can do is imagine.

I am not saying that it is easy to do what is right when everyone around you is wallowing in the mud or to hold your head high when you have been greatly wronged, but I can say that if you do, you will be stronger in ways that I am far too incompetent to define. 

Norv, you cannot change what happened.  You can, however, prepare like never before and take it out on the Jets next week or you can wallow in your self pity and be 2-5 and updating your resume.

I’m Back

September 17, 2008 1 comment

It’s been a crazy summer.  I know I fell off the face of the earth, but I have climbed back to the surface and I know that all six of my faithful readers will be pleased 🙂

Categories: Random Thoughts

The Ocean’s Roar

June 19, 2008 1 comment

Here is one of my favorite songs.  It is intended to be a praise song.  It has never really been used in corporate worship, but I use it in any set that I can work it into and play it quite often during my own times of praise and worship.  I drew from my own experiences when writing this.  I live near the coast so  I have spent my share of time in and around the Ocean.  I have seen the powerful rip currents and been turned around by the waves and didn’t know which way was up.  I remember the first time I saw an eagle flying.  I remember distictly that there were several buzzards that were circling the same general area as the eagle.  At first, they were all at the same height and then as if it flipped a switch, the eagle began to soar far above anything the buzzards could ever dream of.  I have spent time in the mountains and enjoyed the spectacular views that differ so much from the Atlantic coast.  And the first time that I went to New York, I tried so hard not to look like a country boy but I could not escape my roots.  I was truly amazed. 

When I wrote this song, I was trying to think of all of the amazing things that I have experienced and how they cannot even come close to what God is and what He means in my life.  This was back in 2005.  As I look back at how much God has brought me through in the last three years, the words mean so much more today than ever.

Verse 1
I’ve heard the ocean roar I felt its power as I stood in it’s waves
I’ve seen the eagle soar I saw its strength as I watched it fly away

Bridge
But of all the things I heard and seen
There’s only one thing compelling me
To fall down on my knees in praise

Chorus
You are God over all I see You’re all I need
You alone are worthy of my praise
More than words of the songs I sing, my offering
A life of praise I bring to You today

Verse 2
I’ve climbed the mountains high saw the beauty of the valley in my view
I’ve seen the city sky and the grand design and buildings man can do

All songs

Categories: Songs Tags: , , , ,