The Loose Cannon

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Top 5 at FOUR!

This afternoon I thought I’d leave the mind twisting in the past and head onto something new for Friday afternoon. Even sometimes in my clouded thought processes I need a break from reality and life and that usually comes through music, painting, writing songs and the occasional read. So this afternoon I’m going to share some of the songs that have really been burning up the ear bud, truck speakers and the stereo  at home. Some of them I’ve posted on Facebook & Twitter. Keep in mind that I listen to ALL sorts of music. Pretty much all of it except rap/hip-hop or what ever you want to call it. I can handle about 3 seconds of it before I want to shoot myself. Each of these songs make my day most of the time and can change my attitude in a heartbeat! I love songs with feeling no matter the subject matter. As long as it’s from the heart I’m down with it. ANY WHO! Let’s get on with it.

The Loose Cannon’s Top 5 at FOUR

*note there may be more than 5 but the top 5 songs are one’s I’m diggin’ this week.

Tell me what y’all are listing to this week!

  1. Kari Jobe: Find You on My Knees 
  2. Ole Blue Eyes – Frank Sinatra: Fly Me to the Moon 
  3. Sanctus Real: Whatever You’re Doing 
  4. Randy Rogers Band: I’ll Be Here for You 
  5. Jeff Bridges (Crazy Heart): Hold On You 

Honorable Mentions

  • Jeremy Camp: The Way 
  • Randy Rogers Band: Steal You Away 
  • Stoney Larue: Let Me Hold You 

I’ll be writing some this weekend so keep a look out.  I’m going to be adding some extra stuff soon. A Braves section as well as a recipe section for plenty of deliciousness from the smoker, grill, oven and stove top. I’m hoping and praying that all of y’all have a wonderful weekend.

Until the next slip of the tongue, Thank You for Visiting “Gullible’s Travels” 

Regards,

The Loose Cannon

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~Man, I miss ‘WKRP in Cincinnati’~

That's What's UP!

When people talk about the greatest sitcoms of all time you hear names like “Seinfeld”, “M*A*S*H*”, “Friends”, “Cheers”…And I LOVE them all. But you never hear anyone mention”WKRP in Cincinnati”. This, folks, is a travesty! If you’re not familiar with this TV show or you haven’t seen it in a while let me enlighten you.

It was a show premised on a struggling radio station in Cincinnati, Ohio. The show had merit. The creator, Hugh Wilson, was a an Atlantan who worked at WXIA and the show was loosely based on his experiences while employed there. However, this show was PURE SOLID GOLD! They just don’t make them like this anymore. The situations, the humor, the characters…It’s rare that we see a comedy or any show that has the delusional cult following as ‘WKRP’. You had/have to have a pretty open since of humor to enjoy the comedy.

The show had characters like weatherman/news director Less Nessman, sales manager Herb Tarlek, Disc Jockeys Dr. Johnny Fever and Venus Flytrap among few others. Man, I REALLY miss those guys….Those were the guys who made the show…They were the brilliance of it all. Lonnie Anderson played ‘Jennfier Marlowe’ and had EVERY male on the show walking on their tongues. Less Nessman was a nerd, Herb Tarlek was the epitome of greasy, Johnny Fever drank on the job and Venus was the “Thoken” Black guy that brought soul to the station. And no that’s not derogatory so don’t go there. There were other characters but these guys were the ones that glued the show together.

I’ve never really been a “T.V.” guy and even wasn’t when I was a kid. But this is a show that I could watch every day! ALL DAY! It’s been years since I’ve seen it and I’m still fond of it. I guess the reason I feel so fondly of the show is that I relate so well to each character that captured me on the show. I feel like I have a piece of all of them.  Let me introduce them:

Weatherman/News Director Less Nessman

Let’s be honest, if you watched the show this guy was probably the least inspiring character on the show to most people. However I connected with Less. See, I’m a nerd. More importantly I’m a weather nerd. I love all things weather. Less got NO respect. NONE on the show. He was the small square voice in the corner on most episodes and rarely was the “Hero” for any story-Line. He usually was the butt of most jokes and was walked over a lot! I can connect with that as well. There have been situations in life where I’ve felt Less’s pain. Being the butt of jokes and usually feeling less important because of it. We all can probably relate. 

Disc Jokey Venus Flytrap

This guy was smooth. He had soul. He was the token black guy on an all white radio station. This guy could dress…Of course it was the late 70’s early 80’s, so silk shirts and scarves were his primp of choice. Everyone Dug Venus. He’s a guy I’d love to hang out with to this day. A lot of people don’t realize this about me but Venus and I would have been Soul Brotha’s. I love some Soul. It’s something that moves me. Just something about having some soul that makes life a little more enjoyable. On the other hand…His character is was the odd man out. He was in another man’s world. I’ve been there too. I’ve been in situations in life where I’ve felt singles out because of being different. You know, not falling in line with what the “Crowd” is doing or saying or singing. We all can probably relate. 

Herb Tarlek

WOW! Herb, Herb was a different kinda cat. This guy came off sleazy, slimy, underhanded and that’s just the tip of the iceberg. He was the typical salesman. Just not a very good one. However, Herb hid his true feelings and his personality from people. He was a self proclaimed “Lady’s Man” but rarely got the girl. He tried to be macho (Yes, people still use that word) and rarely succeeded. Man, some of this sounds REALLY familiar to me. My entire adult life I’ve had goals. I’ve attained some and I’ve failed at some as well. But all the while I’ve played the part of someone I’m not at times to try and appear more of a man or more appealing to the opposite sex. Even more importantly I wanted to make it appear like I had it all together when I didn’t have anything together at all. Herb, well he was the same way. He was also a snappy dresser as you can see! We all can probably relate! 

Disc Jockey Dr. Johnny Fever

I saved the best for last. DJF, as I like to call him, was “The Man”. He was the show to me. When I was a kid I thought this guy was a cool as you could get. He played the kinda music I liked, his vernacular was what I thought cool was and he was up for a good time any time…To me he was the life of the party. I have been that guy. I’ve been the life of the party. I have had people look up to me because of how I partied or what I said or how I acted and what I listened to. It’ amazing when I look back now that DJF is still cool to me. He still walks the walk and talks that talk in my mind. These days my priorities have changed. I no longer aspire to be the life of the party. I no longer aspire to be “Cool”. However I do aspire to Walk a Walk and that Walk is with Christ. Can any of you relate? 

In this life, in this world we’re all different yet the same. We’re different kinds of people all wrapped up into one core soul. Deep down inside we have one true being and that’s who we are. We were made to have a singular identity and that identity is in the image of God. Of course we were given a different course in life, different strengths, different likes and dislikes. But we’re all called to follow God and his will. If you struggle with finding an identity at times I’m here to tell you that’s okay. I’m 36 years old and I have yet to truly find myself. Heck, I sometimes don’t even know what that means. It’s okay to not understand everything about yourself and who you are. If we were to have all the answers there really would be no reason for our existence.  I think we all have some Less Nessman and Venus Flytrap in us…I KNOW we all have some Herb Tarlek in us…I’m just not real sure that all of us can compare to Dr. Johnny Fever.

God, gave us these differences in our personalities so that we would have the ability to relate to others. If we were all totally unique in nature we’d have no ability to relate to someone who’s feeling left out, trying to fit in, or is as cool as we are. Chew on that fat this afternoon, will ya? I know there is someone around you at work, at church, at the gym, in your small group or just a stranger that you’ll see today that may be some of all of these people. I challenge you to reach out to them and tell them you’re praying for them or just make them feel like part of the crowd…By INCLUDING them.  After all, we’re all God’s children.

In other news, I just wanted to let y’all in on a tiny little secret:

It's True, I'm FRIKKIN Awesome!

Until the next slip of the tongue, Thank You for visiting “Gullible’s Travels”

Regards,

The Loose Cannon

~The HOT Button has been pressed!~

WARNING THE HOT BUTTON HAS BEEN PRESSED!

Well, HOWDY DO! Neighbors…Today is Wednesday and I declare it “HOT BUTTON WEDNESDAY”…Today’s topic should be an interesting one. It’s actually something I’m pretty passionate about…I enjoy the debate over it and I also enjoy seeing people squirm when they hear the word “Judgement“….Say it with me and smile

J U D G E M E N T :)

And the Temperature Rises

But first I have to get something off my chest. I don’t like to be judged…Not in any way shape or form. It’s like wearing fiberglass drawz while running a marathon or doing squats. But, I understand it’s human nature to look at a person and think…”That person is a real moron” or “That guys blog is stupid…He compared life to a taco”. I get it. I really do…But do you know what I can’t stand more than being judged. That’s right…You guessed it……………………JUDGE JUDY!

Am I the only one here that wants to poke her in the eye?

In fact, most television judges make my skin crawl. But Judge Judy makes me want to slam my big toe with a dead blow hammer…Not once but thrice! I’m gonna pick on my Sweet Mom here a little. She loves those kinda shows. If she’s at home in the afternoon I can almost GAR’UN’TEEYA that there is one of THOSE shows on and a marathon will ensue.  I don’t see the appeal and all 3 parties involved usually make me want to incite a riot.

Tell me if this sounds familiar: Deadbeat guy gets girl pregnant, she’s working 270 hours a week and he’s sleeping on the couch. He barrows $4,700 to buy an ounce of dope and a new car stereo for a car that doesn’t even run and won’t pay her back. Judge Judy then climbs on her high horse and continues to shhh and make loser gestures to the two love birds  having unwed children together. They usually have a bailiff that stands in the corner and “MmmmHmms” the judge too…This is supposed to be entertaining but if I’m honest I’d rather tweeze every hair off my body! Are you getting the picture yet? If not here’s one for you.

Class, PURE class

Really? I cannot believe someone would choose to go on television in front of this lady and air their dirty laundry. Not to mention getting treated like trash from the bench. Rarely have I seen her bite the bullet and actually show compassion for either party.

Isn’t that how some people in our lives treat us? Full of snap and harsh judgement. Judging our character before they really get to know us. Because the kind of clothes we wear, skin color we have, tattoos we have, hair style we wear or the types of shoes we walk in. What about those judgments that are even more personal in nature. The Family we come from, the way we raise our kids, the church we go to….There are endless possibilities for someone to look at you and make a judgement without even knowing you.

How does that make you feel? Chances are you don’t love it. Chances are you’ve been judged today. Maybe because of something you wore to work, a conversation someone heard you having and they only heard 1 side, something you may have posted on facebook….who knows but I can assure you if you’re reading this you were judged in some way, shape or form today.

Judgement is one of those subjects that people tiptoe around because it’s offensive. We’re all scared of offensive topics. Look at what being afraid to say “Black” or “Colored” or “Asian” or any term that refers to ethnicity has done to race relations. Someone is scared of offending someone else because it’s a sensitive issue.

We often use the short term “Don’t judge me” playfully in common fun. But really that’s the way we all feel daily isn’t it? Especially when we’re doing something we know is wrong. We don’t want to hear someone say…”Marc, that’s not right man. What you just said to her isn’t right…You just got that meal for free because they gave you the wrong change back”. We don’t want to hear someone say that to us because they just may be right.

Let me tell you something groundbreaking friends. That’s not judgement. That’s knowing right from wrong and letting you know it. If you cheat on your wife or husband and confess that to someone and they tell you that’s wrong. It’s not judgement. Right is right and wrong is wrong.  They’re both truths.

Certainly there is a grey area there…It’s a fine line at times between forming an opinion of someone’s actions to whether it’s “Right or wrong”. I believe we’re born with innate morals that God has instilled in us. He’s also listed them in his Good Book. Of course there is the 10 commandments and the commandments Jesus made in the New Testament. Then there are the laws of our Nation. Most people in this country claim you can’t legislate morality…I’m sorry, But that’s a load of Bull Squeeze…This country has been doing that from DAY 1! Each state does it and all 3 Branches of our Federal Government legislate morality. It’s right from wrong! As I’ve stated before, it’s the “Golden Rule”.  The cornerstone of morality.  I don’t see how and why we make it so Gawl’Dang hard to understand! Human nature? Laziness? Stubbornness? All of the above? Maybe.

I think most people refuse to realize the difference in truth and judgement. What do I mean by that? I mean that when we do something wrong and someone calls us out on it we blame them for judging us. If you’re my friend and you do something wrong I’m going to tell you. Regardless of whether you steal, lie or cheat…I’m going to tell you and I hope you would hold me to the same standard. Is it hard to get told you’re wrong?…SURE IT IS! We don’t like to be wrong. I don’t like to be wrong (I wish I knew what that felt like, btw).

The real reason we don’t want someone to tell us right from wrong is that we don’t like feeling convicted. It’s a difficult set of feelings. It can be emotional. It can be frustrating. I can feel demeaning. There can be shame and guilt associated with it. But there is GOOD NEWS! No one is immune from forgiveness.  Especially from the Savior. It’s amazing that it’s easier for our God to forgive us than humans. I would think it would be the opposite. But his Grace is sufficient!

Let me caution you:

Mathew 7:3   “Why do you worry about the sawdust in your friends eye when you don’t pay attention to the plank in your own eye”

We all do wrong, so if you do have to correct a friend do it with Truth, Love and Grace.

We are not to condemn our brothers but merely point out that they may have fallen. Remember speaking truth into someone is a privilege and a responsibility. You have to make sure you have that right to cross those bounds before you take that step. When you give truth, do it in Love and not anger. If you have to take some time to collect yourself in a situation, step back and  look at how it needs to be properly addressed, do so.  When you speak the truth into someone, Give them Grace. If our Heavenly Father can do so we certainly can.  Think of how you would want that person to handle the situation if the roles were reversed.

Jut to be clear, this is what we call “Accountability” in certain dark corners of our secret society known as “grown ups”. Some of us don’t want to be held accountable. That’s where we find ourselves in the blame game of judgement. If you want to see a group of people who exercises Grace well and truly Loves people. Look at “People of the Second Chance” and see how they do it.

http://www.potsc.com

I’m sure a preacher somewhere could have put my blog a little more eloquently than I did. It wasn’t what I was going to share today but it was on my heart. So thanks for letting me share.

Until the next slip of the tongue, Thank You for visiting “Gullible’s Travels” 

Regards,
The Loose Cannon

~When life hands you Lemons, make Taco Salad~

Please allow me to share something before we get to the meat of my blog. I wrote it yesterday afternoon and there were some things on my heart this morning I just had to share. So thank you for your time and patience.

This morning I woke up and there were several people on my mind. Some people are doing well and some are not. Some are like me searching for vocation and direction in life…Some are not. Some are happy and some are sad. Since I started this blog I have had a good many people reach out to me for advice. Everything from loneliness to how to witness to a nonbeliever to just having questions about their own direction. Believe it or not I’ve started some sort of Blog revolution. There are a lot of my friends who are telling me they’re going back to the writing in their blog and a good many people starting their own because of this blog. Which is a surprise to me. It’s flattering but it’s surprising.

I’m really happy that people are somewhat relating and are able to wade through these goofy thoughts of mine. There are more of those below so read on. It’s my way of trying to relate and my way of trying to say “Hey, let’s look at things differently from the way we always do and see if that changes our patterns a little and helps us out of a particular rut we’ve been in”. Because we’re ALLLL in some sort of rut.

Anyway, I got an email this morning from a friend who asked me for prayers and I’m glad to do so.  It breaks my heart sometimes to hear a friend is hurting and there isn’t anything I can do but pray. I know that’s no small thing…Actually it’s the best thing for a friend in need. Life isn’t always a bowl of sugar, we know that. It’s hard and it’s painful and it’s a pain in the proverbial rump! So I’d just like for you to know that if you need some prayer or uplifting in any way … I’m right here. You can email me privately, hit me up on facebook or if you have my number text or call. I’m happy to help in any way. Even if you don’t believe in any way shape or form I’ll still pray for you and I’ll still try to help you in any way I can if you’re hurting. I’m an equal opportunity advice giver, encourager and I just plain out Love people.

I wrote the blog entry below yesterday afternoon with a friend in mind. He’s a great guy and I’ve enjoyed being his friend. I usually don’t call people out a lot like this but I don’t have a lot of friends like him. He’s probably the most positive person I know. Willing to help in any way possible. He’s a great family man and just a plain out good guy. This world would be a 1,000 % better off if there were more “Duck” McGiboneys around.  So without further ado…

~When life hands you Lemons, make Taco Salad~

HOLY SWEET MOTHER OF HEY SEUSS!

I can’t help it…Tacos are freakin DELICIOUS!

I mean WHO doesn’t like a taco?

The taco has to be one of the greatest culinary inventions to have ever graced this planet. It’s right up there with pizza, the cheese burger, spam, Foie gras creamy chicken Ramen Noodles, spicy pork skins, caviar and the french fry. If you do not agree then you don’t have to stop reading but I’ve lost a ton of respect for your taste bud’s flavoring prowess.

And when I say a taco I don’t mean just a little meat, a few strands of lettuce and a sprinkle of cheese. Similar to what you’d get at Taco Bell…I’m talking about a hard shell, packed full of meat, lettuce, tomatoes, cheese and a healthy helping of sour cream…And then to top it off like a cherry…Hot sauce.  It’s got to have the spice…It’s one of the most important ingredients in that entirely blissful creation. While this is not the original way the taco was prepared it’s the correct way. The taco actually predates the European expansion to the New World. However, in the early 40’s the hard-shell taco was first served and this culinary phenomenon was born!

When I make tacos at home 3 tacos usually does me good… but I’ve eaten as many as 6 in one sitting. Prepared just as I stated above…Yes, yes…My mouth is watering too. The prep work and building of your tacos is really where the fun is. I warm my shells in the oven, cook whatever meat I have chosen (Usually shredded goat) with the right amount of taco seasoning (Store bought is fine or you can make your own), shred some iceberg lettuce and dice a tomato. Some folks add a hot pepper or two and that’s perfectly okay with me.

Building a taco is a tenuous yet satisfying task. Trying to fill that hard fragile shell with as much deliciousness as you can is quite a challenge. There is the fear of snapping the shell. It’s a true tragedy when this happens. So be careful. I’m not particular in how mine is constructed as far as the layers go…It just has to be FULL!

There’s also a proper way to eat a taco: Placing the right hand over the end furthest away from your mouth. Elbow out and up…Tilting the head to the side and taking the first bite with that tell tell sound of (((((((((CRUNCH))))))))) and then, with your eyes closed, grease inevitably runs down the left side of your face.  Blissful ain’t it ! That first bite is right on time! Just what the doctor ordered! The coup d’état of  your taste buds! There is nothing quite like it in the world. You prepare, you build and then you enjoy what you’ve worked so hard for. This is the main reason I love cooking SO much.

But what happens when things don’t go right? What happens when you get the dreaded ((((GASP)))) – Broken Taco?

NOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOO!!

You know what I’m talking about: The first bite or maybe the second and the whole thing folds up like a cheap suit! KABLOOIE! Taco is everywhere. Most of the time it’s salvageable in some way but there are times when not all of your taco is eatable at this point. My spirits are usually deflated when the broken taco rears it’s ugly head. The other tacos lose their novelty…At this point there is nothing left to do but smash the other tacos or what’s left of the broken taco up into a taco salad. I guess you could eat the remaining tacos hoping they won’t break but once the fork comes out…..I’m done. But there’s good news…I happen to LOVE taco salad as well.

So, you’re probably thinking what the flip, Cannon? Where is the encouragement in a freaking blog about a broken taco…A BROKEN TACO!? That’s entirely too depressing for a Tuesday. I know I know…I have a little bit different perspective on life and the way I look at things…So, I’ll tell ya…Life is like those tacos. I do this a lot in life. I work on something and build it up only to have it go KABLOOIE! on me….Right there at the verge of attaining that goal or big business deal or whatever I had been working towards. The euphoria is gone, the pleasure is gone….We’ve all been there. We’ll all break our taco shells again.

There is a saying “When life gives you Lemons, make lemonade”…………  I don’t like lemonade.

But I do Love a good taco. So, when life breaks your taco, make taco salad.

When that proverbial taco shell breaks we have 2 choices:

  1. We can choose to let it get us down and not have any enjoyment whatsoever.
  2. We can choose to adapt and make the best of the situation.

Easier said then done I know. Failures in life are what paralyze me the most. It’s been up until this past year that I’ve really learned to let God have control of some of those fears. It’s been extremely hard and if I’m honest I still have a few … Well, a lot that I’m still clinging onto with white knuckles. But I have seen the fruits of surrendering my fears to the good Lord. I tell ya it’s not easy but when you can specifically see God’s hand wipe a slate clean in your life it becomes a little easier to deal with the next time you break that taco shell.

Isaiah 41:10 fear not, for I am with you; be not dismayed, for I am your God; I will strengthen you, I will help you, I will uphold you with my righteous right hand.

Deuteronomy 31:6 Be strong and courageous. Do not fear or be in dread of them, for it is the LORD your God who goes with you. He will not leave you or forsake you.”

That says it all!

So, who wants a Taco?

Thank you once again for joining me on the daily journey through this clouded mind I’m blessed with.

Until the next slip of the tongue, Thank You for Visiting “Gullible’s Travels”

Regards,

The Loose Cannon

This blog entry was inspired by my good friend Daniel “Duck” McGiboney. “Wolfpack Forever”!

~So ya say you wanna be a long haul trucker~

RANDOM THOUGHTS HEAD

When I was a kid growing up in Conyers, Ga. some of my fondest memories were of vacations my family took. The Georgia Coast, Charleston S.C., Washing D.C., the Great Smokey Mountains, Walt Disney World in Orlando to name a few. I remember not sleeping waiting to leave, usually before the sun came up and piling into the car headed to our destination. I absolutely dreaded the ride to and from  wherever our trek was taking us.  DREADED! For what usually seemed like days didn’t really take that long but the seconds felt like minutes and the minutes felt like hours.

The one and only thing I looked forward to about the drive was giving the truck drivers “Tha Signal”…..Y’all know “Tha Signal”. If you say you didn’t do it too, you’re lying. It’s the one when you’re passing a Peterbilt or a Kenworth pulling a long white box down that white line and you’re in the back seat pumping your arm Up and Down with untold vigor to get the driver to notice you and  blow that horn!

MAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAH!!!! MAAAAAAAAAAAAH!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

It was like victory for some reason. The jubilation in the car was usually short-lived but it soon was replaced with the anticipation of the next truck.  I have a twin sister and we usually sat in the same seat when we went anywhere. I was lucky…I sat in the passenger side behind my Mom and I was on the front row of the most exciting show on the road.  These days most of us usually give those truckers another signal but we won’t get into that today.

Now it wasn’t just “The Signal” that excited me but the trucks themselves. I honestly didn’t give the operators much thought at all. But there was something that dazzled me when I was a kid about a Tractor Trailer Truck. The size, the power, the sound, how they all lit up like a Christmas tree at night. Man, they were just plum Cool!  They were the invincible monsters of the roadway. The thought of driving one across the country seemed like a dream job. Heck, even sitting in one when I was a kid would have been cooler than ice cream. I knew that’s what I wanted to be when I grew up: A Long Haul Trucker.

When I was 7……

I’m not sure why this came to mind and how it manifested into this thought but the thought of being an over the road trucker today sounds so unappealing.  It’s not my bag       at         all.  Seeing the country would be great … BUT, the endless miles of sitting and being alone most of the time would just be a drain on the mind, body and soul. Now I’m not knocking truck drivers in any way shape or form. We need them…They’re an American Institution.  I have friends that do it and love it…It’s just not for me.

Like I said I’m not sure how this thought or correlation came to be but this past Saturday night while laying in bed it popped in my head “Man, this life sure is like being a ‘Long Haul Trucker’  sometimes”….Out of no where.  As a matter of fact I was thinking about how I’d like to be in Key West…The two aren’t remotely connected.  That seems to be how my brain operates – Metaphorical manifestations of strange correlating thoughts. It’s a gift,,,, I think. Anywho, I sort of opened my eyes a reflected on how we all can probably relate to this metaphor.

Think about it a second and climb up into the drivers seat of the cab and tell me if this doesn’t sound familiar (No matter your walk of life).

 Look at all them gauges !

It’s amazing at how our daily lives compare to the job of a Long Haul Trucker. We’re mirror images for the most part of the roll of the trucker. They’re vital to a company-We’re vital to our families, friends, Church and our employers. The trucker logs mile after mile 12 hours at the time to meet their deadlines – We have deadlines on a daily basis and some of us rack up more commitments than we can possibly handle. Truckers spend a lot of time alone – Some of us spend a lot of time alone physically but I’d be willing to bet that a lot of us spend a lot of time feeling alone even in a crowd. A trucker sees a ton of beautiful scenery but operating a vehicle that size is a ton of responsibility and doesn’t get to fully enjoy his surroundings – We’re surrounded by beauty and God’s creation every day but we usually don’t stop to enjoy it because we’re “Busy”.  Truckers log hundreds of thousands of miles a year in their rig but I’m sure they could only recall a fraction of those miles – We are in the race of life and we’re so busy we know where we’ve been, we know where we are and we haven’t the slightest clue how we got here…I know I don’t. It’s eerily similar to me. And I know you might think this is a strange comparison to make in a blog. But it’s just what’s on my mind. I could go on and on with comparisons about the rules of the road and whatnot but for the sake of time I’ll only make one more comparison and save y’all the little stuff.

The one thing that really stood out to me is the load. Think about the load they haul…It’s enormous, it’s a strain going up hills, it’s tough to brake going down hills, sometimes the trucker knows what he’s hauling … Sometimes he don’t.  Strap your Pontiac up to a full trailer and see how far you get.  The load we carry is enormous as well. It’s a strain going up hills and it’s tough braking coming down those hills. Sometimes we carry our own load and sometimes we carry burdens we’re not supposed to. The tractor trailer truck as well as the driver takes a beating. It’s NOT an easy vocation and it’s not easy on the machine.

BUT, there’s good news. The truck is designed and engineered for those type loads. They can pull 55,000 lbs across the continental divide. IT’s what they’re made for.  To pull and carry and pull and carry some more. Those trucks outlast domestic vehicles 10/1.  That’s how they were designed. And operating them carries a TON of pressure as well.  Think about towing 55,000 pounds down through the Rockies. Whew! That would make me a nervous wreck.

There’s more good news! God has designed us similarly to that rig. We’re built to carry heavy loads….We were built to ENDURE! Say that with me: We were built to ENDURE! Again, we were built to ENDURE! The every day loads we carry in life are heavy, the burdens are a strain and once they start rolling down hill they’re hard to brake sometimes. Well, all the time. The Good news is that we have an engineer that can steer us through and around the hills and curvy roads of our continental divides, Jesus.  Every trial, tribulation and catastrophe we drive through in life we are built to endure!

So without even realizing it I’m living out a childhood dream…………………………………..Kinda.

2 Corinthians 6:4

but as servants of God we commend ourselves in every way: by great endurance, in afflictions, hardships, calamities

Colossians 1:11

May you be strengthened with all power, according to his glorious might, for all endurance and patience with joy

I do realize this is a fairly random topic and comparison and I do appreciate you reading if you made it this far. After contemplating this for a while I couldn’t help but let it spill out. Anytime I can spend some time in my childhood I relish it. So thank you for taking that journey with me today…Through my childhood and through the clouds that are my thoughts.

Until the next slip of the tongue, Thank You for visiting “Gullible’s Travels”.

Regards,

The Loose Cannon

~An Urgent Message from the Desk of THE Loose Cannon~

Well I lied, I’m really not at my desk, I’m sitting in my truck stealing WIFI on the Covington Square wasting a little time before I have to be back at church this afternoon. SOOOO, I figured I’d just jot a few letters down in certain patterns that form, what we as humans like to call, “Words”. And these “Words” are what we use to communicate with sometimes.  It’s a novel concept, no?

This afternoon I’m digesting the message that my Pastor, Scott Moore, preached on this morning. It was interesting to me that his message was inline with a lot of what I touched on this week. His words just confirmed in my mind that I’m at least pointed in the right direction.  I want this blog to be about life, transparency, overcoming obstacles & just plain living a more fulfilling and happy life. Thrown in with a little humor and some other stuffs and whatnots that really rattle my shackles. So strap on your helmets and sharpen your crayons boys and girls-The train is leaving the station.

Committing to myself to write this blog has REALLY forced me to watch people. Really watch them closely. From how they treat others as well as how they act when they’re, say,  eating alone etc…It’s also forced me to review and get in sync with who I really am. That’s the journey I’m looking forward to the most. Who can I really be? Hey, Who can you really be?

So I hope that all of you continue this journey with me and let’s take over the world one grain of sand at a time.

This is a sneak peak at the BLOG  topics you have to look forward to this week:

  • ~So ya say ya wanna be a Long Haul Trucker~
  • ~Aim Small, Miss Small~
  • ~I’ll Make You Famous~ 
  • ~Hey, I like Tacos!~ 
  • ~I Miss WKRP in Cincinnati~

*These topics may be subject to change depending on how grouchy I am on any given day. Please note they are listed in no particular order.

I cant wait to delve into them and chew the fat with y’all.

Until the next slip of the tongue, Thank you for visiting “Gullible’s Travels” 

Regards,

The Loose Cannon

~Embrace your inner Todd Snider!~

Introducing, Mr. Todd Snider

Who in the Sam Hill is Todd Snider?

Well, he’s an American folk artist from Portland, Oregon who is an outstanding story teller, song-writer and he’s even better at being himself. He’s a self admitted less than great musician but he’s got a voice (Which isn’t great), can play 3 or 4 chords on a flat top and I repeat very good at being himself.  *Warning Will Robinson!!!!!! Make no mistake, he’s not a Christian artist so if you do decide to check him out and you hear him slip a foul word in or you hear a remark about right-wing Christians don’t complain just go with it. I was introduced to him years ago while sitting on a porch in Athens, Ga. drinking a Miller Lite and smoking a cigarette by my friend Will Hodges. I was hooked!  His songs are funny, painful, truthful, satirical, political and the stories that go with them are plum GUT-BUSTING Funny. He was influenced by folks like John Prine & Jerry Jeff Walker along with some guy named Tog.

Now I understand that Todd Snider may not be your cup of tea or he may actually offend you in some way. But I don’t mention him in this light. The reason I’ve brought him up is – eccentricities. He’s got  it…This guy is the epitome of eccentric.  Here’s your school lesson for the day.

Definition of ECCENTRIC

1
a : deviating from an established or usual pattern or style<eccentric products>b : deviating from conventional or accepted usage or conduct especially in odd or whimsical ways eccentricmillionaire>
a : deviating from a circular path; especially : elliptical 1<an eccentric orbit>b : located elsewhere than at the geometrical center; also :having the axis or support so located <an eccentric wheel>

I mentioned above that Snider is great at being himself and that is the God’s honest truth. You may say “Loose Cannon, all musicians have the ability to be themselves or they’re all eccentric.” That couldn’t be further from the truth. Look at the modern country artist. In fact look at them all. They’re singing basically the same song over and over and over again…Just in different octaves.  They conform. They’re lead by a ring in the nose to sing what “Nashville” wants to hear. This can be said for basically all forms of music.

Sold out is a term you hear a lot in the music world by those who haven’t made it describing those who have. Todd Snider didn’t sell out and most of you have probably never heard his name. That’s just fine by him. He’s happy being himself.
You can probably already see the writing on the wall here but I want to ask you a question and I want you to truthfully answer it.

 Are you true to yourself or do you conform because that’s what the world expects? Have you really ever embraced your inner Todd Snider? Have you embraced your eccentricities? Chances are the answer is no for the most part.

This blog is personal to me because for so many years I’ve conformed: From what I say to what I wear, from looking for a specific vocation to the car or truck I want to drive. Those are just examples. Don’t get me wrong I have my own taste in clothes, cars, hair, music, women, etc….But I’ve never really let it go. I’ve never let my eccentricities show for fear that it   just    may   not   conform.  This has been somewhat of an epiphany for me this week. I’ve got this person that most people have never seen ready to be shown and I want to let it out.  I have been told on more than one occasion that I dress well and that people like my style.  I do wear the clothes that I like and I do listen to the music I enjoy but that’s not exactly what I’m referring to.

We were created NOT to conform and TO be different. Ever heard the statement “Everyone’s different”…Sure you have. So why are we SO hung up on being the same? I believe it comes down to not really knowing who we are. I took a test this week that outlined my leadership strengths and the test was dead on as to who I am but I really thought I was something different. I thought I was a “Coach” but I’m not…Turns out I’m a “Spokesperson”. Who would thunk it? There are so many things that I really am and I’ve chosen not to embrace because they may not fall in the category of “The Norm”.  I mean what in the world is “The Norm” anywho? That’s not who God intended me to be and it’s not who he intended you to be either. We’re all created with our own personalities, given our on strengths and weaknesses as well as our own skills. He’s gifted each of us with things we were not meant to hold onto.

Look at the people throughout history who played the part of eccentric crazy person. Albert Einstein, Michelangelo, COUNTLESS authors, The Apostle Paul and even Jesus himself. Jesus is the perfect model for being yourself. Never swayed by the world and living the life he was intended to live. Look at the influence these people had on the world. By being who they were inside. They touched countless people in ways most of us only dream about. And you say “Cannon, those people were famous and one of them is God”. So? How do you think they got that way….It wasn’t by conforming to what the “World” says to be.

I’m not simply saying be crazy just to be crazy or wear skinny jeans  because you think it makes you different. I’m saying find out who you are and embrace that person who you have never let the world see. I challenge each of you to reach inside yourself and pull out that person you’ve never let the world around you see. Who knows who you’ll touch…Who know’s what you’ll accomplish….Heck, who knows…It may even make you happy!
So with that being said…Without further ado … Ladies and Gentlemen, Mr. Todd Snider!

Until the next slip of the tongue, Thank You for visiting “Gullible’s Travels”
Regards,
The Loose Cannon

~Morality over Mortality~

As I sit here on the square in my favorite coffee-house, at the corner of Pace and Floyd Streets, in beautiful Downtown Covington, Ga. I’ve had an epiphany. I’ve finally narrowed down just what’s wrong with our country. The quality of life in this country is suffering and it’s suffering for one reason. We live in a country where our values have become:

 

“Mortality over Morality”.

 
What do I mean by that?

 
Think about it for a second – We’ve become a “Me first” society. “We the people” do or say anything to get what we want, as much as we want, as fast as we can and then …………we die. It seems to be a race to death around here. Or maybe we’re already dead on our feet and we’re delaying the inevitable? The fact of the matter is…We choose ourselves instead of choosing others. More on that in a moment.

 
Growing up in the South, I was taught that people were to be treated with respect and to use my gentlemanly manners (Ladies, Southern Charm and Chivalry are not dead). If my Dad ever heard me say “Huh” or “Yeah” to any adult when I was a kid I got the look. My siblings know the look…’Chin down, eyes over the glasses, slightly widened’ to go with a stern tone. I’m still to this day a “Yes Sir, No Sir, Yes Ma’am, No Ma’am, Thank You” kinda fella. Respect is important. VERY important to me. It should be to you as well. NOT just respect for others but for ourselves. For in respecting yourself you learn to respect others and vise versa. I was taught to value people.

 
A few questions I’d like the answers to:

  • When did it become “Okay” and the “Norm” to be vulgar and offensive without losing a tooth or ten?
  • Why have parents seemingly stopped parenting?
  • Why are skinny jeans legal?

I believe that we’ve become so self-involved that we’ve lost our Morality. Our moral fabric is slipping away as fast as the rain forest or the polar ice caps. I don’t know what most people think of when they think of morality… But it starts with respecting others. Regardless of what belief system you belong to, this country WAS founded on Judeo Christian values. Were all of our Fore Fathers Christians? No, no they were not. But there’s not a doubt in my mind their moral fabric was shaped and molded by biblical principles. Simply said, Do unto others and you would have done to you. We simply do not treat each other well. From our language on a city street to our conduct when we drive. We do not treat each other well. From our actions in the grocery store line to how we talk to someone who is waiting our table. WE DO NOT TREAT EACH OTHER WELL!


I believe the value of life, anyone’s life, is their investment in others. Not with how much “STUFF” you acquire, money you make or how many people you take down getting what you want. But how you involve yourself in others. Each of our lives can be more fulfilling and satisfying if we just put ourselves in the back of the line and garner more respect for others. Not only will you respect yourself more and enjoy life more but your legacy will be something to behold. That, my friends, I can promise.

 
The bible tells us to: Love your neighbor as thyself. That’s a powerful statement. There are 2 meanings in this statement…And it’s simple really!

 
1. Love your neighbor

2. Love yourself

 
They come together at a confluence and become the “Golden Rule”. The corner-stone of morality. Treat each other well!

 
In short, our morality has a direct outcome on our lives. How we feel, how we’re treated, how we’re viewed by others and the legacy we’ll leave behind.

 
I choose Morality over mortality


Until the next slip of the tongue, Thank you for visiting “Gullible’s Travels”


Regards,
The Loose Cannon

~ Be AWARE, don’t beware ~

Webster’s definitions of ‘Beware’  & ‘Aware’ are strikingly similar. But in the real world I see both words as worlds apart.

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Definition of BEWARE

intransitive verb
: to be on one’s guard <beware of the dog>
transitive verb
1
: to take care of <beware your wallet>
2
: to be wary of beware the exceedingly tenuous generalization — Matthew Lipman>
_____________________________________________________________________________________________

Definition of AWARE

1
archaic : watchfulwary
2
: having or showing realization, perception, or knowledge
— aware·ness noun
_____________________________________________________________________________________________
Let me ask you a question.
-How are you living your life? I don’t mean where you live, what you eat, what you drive or what you drink (Although, those things are important) – Really, take a minute and answer this question. To yourself, out loud or to someone else. How are you living life? Are you living in fear? Are you in the “Beware” category of life?
You know what I’m talking about: Waking up in the morning worried that you won’t finish well for the day. Scared of the shadows of life – Bills, relationships, lacking what the world tells you is important. If I’m honest with you, and I’m going to be very transparent on this blog, I’m living in the “Beware” most of the time.  I’m not a worrier per say, but I’m constantly paralyzed by my fears. There are signs that read “Beware” stamped on most every aspect of my life. Throughout my life I’ve more often than not faced those signs and just taken a different path or refused to choose a path at all because there just may be something to that fear.
The “Beware” is a lonely yet very crowded place. It’s the place where you’re constantly “Bewaring” of fears and you’re keenly aware of them all.
I struggle daily with my own self contrived inadequacies. These words constantly ring in my ears Beware Marc: you’re not good enough for that person, you don’t possess the skills for that job, you’re a sinner so you can’t serve the Lord like he has planned for you”.
I tried so long to cover the “Beware” in my life to appear stronger than I really am. But I tell you the truth, my “Beware” is out there…
THEN! There are some of you who live in the “Aware” side of life.  This is where I strive to be daily and I crave with all my being to be.  The “Aware” side of life is that place where you’re keenly aware of everything around you without fear. You know: How you affect others, how you enjoy a meal, how you see what’s going on around you soaking it in…Good or bad. It’s the way the grass smells after it’s cut, the pavement smells after the rain, the way a sunset looks in the spring, summer, fall and winter.  It’s the words of a song or the texture of certain stroke of a paint brush on your favorite manipulated canvas, a kiss, a hug or a handshake. It’s the little things that matter!
Those who live in the “Aware” know exactly where they are…It’s in the present. It’s in the moment…It’s not worrying about tomorrow or living in a regret from the past.  Those are the people who reach others on a level that changes lives. They lead, they follow, they listen and they Love.
I believe that every soul placed upon this earth craves, yearns and is created to live this way. There is good news…We can ALL live in the “Aware”! There is a saying “Walk in another man’s shoes”. You can live in the “Aware” by living through that statement. Try walking in Christ’s shoes (Okay, his sandals) and I promise you that what you’re aware of daily, hourly and minute by minute will change and change how you live life.

Whether or not you’re a Christian or not you cannot deny the way Christ lived his life.  It was utterly, totally and fully in the “Aware”! He lived passionately, Loved completely, learned humbly, and left boldly. He reached people and was keenly aware of what was happening around him at all times. That is how I want to live every second of my life. It’s the only way to live! Christ didn’t worry about what the day brought forth. He embraced it….Good and bad.

Living in the “Aware” insures a fulfilling past, pleasant present and a prosperous future.

I challenge each of you, when you wake up in the morning to become aware of what’s happening around you. The sounds, the smells, the sights and embrace them. Most of all I invite you to become aware of those who are around you and embrace them.

Matthew 6:25-34

New International Version (NIV)

Do Not Worry

25 “Therefore I tell you, do not worry about your life, what you will eat or drink; or about your body, what you will wear. Is not life more than food, and the body more than clothes?26 Look at the birds of the air; they do not sow or reap or store away in barns, and yet your heavenly Father feeds them. Are you not much more valuable than they? 27 Can any one of you by worrying add a single hour to your life[a]?   28 “And why do you worry about clothes? See how the flowers of the field grow. They do not labor or spin. 29 Yet I tell you that not even Solomon in all his splendor was dressed like one of these. 30 If that is how God clothes the grass of the field, which is here today and tomorrow is thrown into the fire, will he not much more clothe you—you of little faith? 31 So do not worry, saying, ‘What shall we eat?’ or ‘What shall we drink?’ or ‘What shall we wear?’32 For the pagans run after all these things, and your heavenly Father knows that you need them. 33 But seek first his kingdom and his righteousness, and all these things will be given to you as well. 34 Therefore do not worry about tomorrow, for tomorrow will worry about itself. Each day has enough trouble of its own.

Until the next slip of the tongue, Thank you for visiting “Gullible’s Travels

Regards,

The Loose Cannon

~All men ARE created equal~

On a day when we celebrate equality in this great country of ours I thought it appropriate to also celebrate the opening of my blog. For those of you who know me, know that I’ve got a lot to say and only a lifetime to say it. I’ll preface this initial commentary in saying that you may not agree with me on all things. In fact, I can guarantee you won’t.

Now, for those who do not know me and have stumbled across this by accident or on purpose. I invite you to read my bio     https://marcuspcannon.wordpress.com/about/

The short version can be found here: I’m a Mid 30’s, Southern Born, Southern Bred Country Boy from Conyers, Georgia. I’m highly opinionated, yet open-minded as well as tolerant to new ideas and welcome them. I don’t follow rules well and I do “My own thang”. If you’re a grammar queen then you’re going to be irritated constantly. 2 reasons: I’m awful at it and most of the people I surround myself with are too. So, if you’re new to me stick around a while and become “Marcus P, Cannonized” .

I’m going to try my best to make sure this blog is fun, informative, challenging, convicting and growing for us all. This will be a place where I’ll express my Christianity, political views as well as my humor. So if you’re offended at anytime then send your complaints via prayer to the Big Man upstairs, via letter or email to 1600 Pennsylvania Ave. Washington D.C. or you can simply respond to my postings.  We’ll talk a lot about cooking, art, music, The Bible, Ups and Downs and countless other things that don’t amount to much more than a hill of beans in the grand scheme of life.

In any event I would like to start by posting something that I struggle with: Equality. This is a posting I felt it necessary to share on Facebook and would like to reiterate and expound on it just a bit.

_____________________________________________________________________________________________

“Over the course of time we, humanity, has fallen short and we’ve most certainly failed at the most important gift we’ve been divinely given. That’s loving one another. Each person – Black, White, Latino, Asian, Arabic and all those in between have been designed to harbor a genuine respect, to honor, to cherish and to Love without apprehension those around us and those we’ll never lay eyes on.

As a younger man I didn’t carry that respect for those of different nationalities, cultures and colors out of bigotry. Not bigotry of a personal nature because I’ve always had friends of different colors and creeds. But bigotry of generalizations. If I’m transparent I still harbor those today and I can say that I’m not proud of that. My prayer is to be more tolerant and understanding as well as less generalizing. 

On this day when we remember a man who stood for fair chances and equalization of all humanity I’d like to pray this prayer: Father God, please soften the hearts of those who struggle with bigotry, hatred and prejudgment of character…Including me. You didn’t call us to only reach the white, the rich, the straight, the Jews, the idolatrous or the non believers. You called us to reach the world. Lead and guide me to do just that, Father. We’re all Your children and You love us all just the same….Please breed into me the same ideal that I am to love those all over the world the same and as Your children. In Your Holy Name I pray. 

Matthew 22:34-40
The Greatest Commandment

34 Hearing that Jesus had silenced the Sadducees, the Pharisees got together. 35 One of them, an expert in the law, tested him with this question: 36 “Teacher, which is the greatest commandment in the Law?”
37 Jesus replied: “‘Love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your mind.’[a] 38 This is the first and greatest commandment. 39 And the second is like it: ‘Love your neighbor as yourself.’[b] 40 All the Law and the Prophets hang on these two commandments.”

God Bless You All My Brothers and Sisters.”

_____________________________________________________________________________________________

Having grown up in the south the culture has always been that of separatism. The whole “There goes the neighborhood” is still a prevalent term, sadly. I’ve used it, SADLY.  Today in this age there are equal amounts of blame to go around. Bigotry, hatred and non-acceptance are prevalent everywhere. Not just in white communities but in black, Asian, Latino and other ethnic communities as well. I wasn’t alive in the 60’s so I can’t speak for those times but it appears in ways that our country isn’t growing in a positive light on the matter of equality.

If we follow the example Christ set forth on how to treat people then the “issue” of equality wouldn’t be an issue at all. Even for you none believers out there. I’d just like to ask each of you on this day to remember that we’re different no matter the color of our skin. God branded us uniquely in his image.  So the white person sitting next to the white person are two totally different people…Same as the black person sitting next to the black person and on down the line.

In any event my prayers today are for quality here, there and around the world.

Until the next slip of the tongue, Thank you for visiting “Gullible’s Travels

Regards,

The Loose Cannon

 

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