Thursday, December 17, 2009


Since I posted a brief about my surgery, thought a follow up would be appropriate. The best description would be tired. My shoulder is doing fine and I suppose a full recovery is hidden in the next week or two. But for now, tired.

Night Riders-Robert Penn Warren**

Just finished Night Riders by Robert Penn Warren. I give it two stars out of four. Robert Penn Warren was the fist Poet Laureate for the United States. He wrote many novels and obviously was a first rate poet. I have yet to read his poetry and this was the first novel of his that I have read. It was also his first novel. I plan to read more and assume that his subsequent novels were much better.

This book follows the fate of Percy Munn, caught in the labyrinth of the tobacco wars. The novel is a dreary tale of Munn's demise. Warren's premise, repeated often, is how things tend to change, almost imperceptibly over time. But the change is real and sometimes drastic. There comes a time when the drastic change is finally noticed and one might even be able to put their finger on when the change started but the change itself is hard to trace.

Munn is a respectable man who finds himself on the side of justice attempting to do what is right by the law and right by nature. Over time, through small compromises, he turns into a compromised criminal, doing wrong for the right reasons. His demise is inevitable and unstopple. He commits adultery and murder almost without a thought only to find his conscience will not sleep. He is plagued by a sleepy remorse but cannot find the place of repentance.

The book is long, almost 500 pages, and I made it to the end, always hoping for hope. But it is faithful to its premise and the hope is unrealized. Percy Munn dies unrepentant and unredeemed.

Thursday, December 10, 2009

Shoulder Surgery

Had shoulder surgery today. Hurt it when I crashed skiing in March. I wrecked my knee then, too, and had ACL reconstruction and torn meniscus surgery in May. My arm and shoulder is now totally numb do to nerve block to help with post surgery. Typing with one hand.

We'll see how tomorrow goes. Got good pain meds for a few days, lying low and David C. preaching for me Sunday.

I'll appreciate your prayers for a speedy recovery. Lord willing, next year a year of health.

Tuesday, December 08, 2009

Duck Hunting

Just got back from an Idaho Duck Hunting trip with my son Zachary. Spent time with brother Gary, nephew Jedidiah, my mom (not in the duck blind) and various other family members.

We had a great time. Got some real Idaho experience. We missed our Phoenix connection because the Charlotte to Phoenix flight had a medical emergency. Guy was having diabetic shock. His insulin pump quit working. We had an emergency landing in Oklahoma City. So, we missed our connection and had to wait in Phoenix for 10 hours. Got to Boise at 11:00pm. Got to Twin Falls around 2:00am, then up to go hunting around 4:00am.

It was cold, about 15 degrees. The first day we limited out, 7 ducks each, 21 total, in two hours. Back to cabin, big lunch and nap. That night, beer and brauts around the campfire, 15 degrees and sitting very close to the fire.

Next morning, bitter cold, about 11 degrees, not many ducks flying and a wet foot due to a leaky wader. Cold, lots of walks down the island to stay warm. Built a little fire to keep the cold away. Got a few birds, hunted all day, mixed some Kalua with the coffee to fake out the cold.

Third day, wind is blowing about 40 miles an hour. Brother wants to make the trip out to the island in one pass. Four men, dressed in many layers of clothes, a dog, a ton of gear and large contingent of duck and goose decoys in a sixteen foot aluminum fishing boat. About six inches to the gunnels. Fear. Water splashing over the side from 30 inch breakers. Hoping to live another day. Coat hoods are frozen solid from water splashes and massive winds at 18 degrees. Cold. We are scared and having fun. We survive and make it to the island. Get set up and lay down to take a nap with our back to the winds, in the dark, 45 minutes to shooting time. Cold is trying to penetrate but we think we fake him out, lying down. Birds are flying but we have a hard time hitting them. A snow squall blows in across the dessert, beautiful, cold, lovely. We get our birds, not a limit but a good day. Could have had a bunch more if only we could have shot better. Maybe so many clothes, three days of cold feet, wind, tired but an adventure and a good one.

We make it back to Twin on Saturday and have a huge duck dinner at the Peking Restaurant. Lots of food. It's hot at the restaurant. Is that possible? Outside it is snowing and inside we are comfortable and full. So full. Then home.