Wednesday, November 23, 2005

The Real Story of the First Thanksgiving by Benjamin Franklin (1785)

“There is a tradition that in the planting of New England, the first settlers met with many difficulties and hardships, as is generally the case when a civiliz’d people attempt to establish themselves in a wilderness country. Being so piously dispos’d, they sought relief from heaven by laying their wants and distresses before the Lord in frequent set days of fasting and prayer. Constant meditation and discourse on these subjects kept their minds gloomy and discontented, and like the children of Israel there were many dispos’d to return to the Egypt which persecution had induc’d them to abandon.

“At length, when it was proposed in the Assembly to proclaim another fast, a farmer of plain sense rose and remark’d that the inconveniences they suffer’d, and concerning which they had so often weary’d heaven with their complaints, were not so great as they might have expected, and were diminishing every day as the colony strengthen’d; that the earth began to reward their labour and furnish liberally for their subsistence; that their seas and rivers were full of fish, the air sweet, the climate healthy, and above all, they were in the full enjoyment of liberty, civil and religious.

“He therefore thought that reflecting and conversing on these subjects would be more comfortable and lead more to make them contented with their situation; and that it would be more becoming the gratitude they ow’d to the divine being, if instead of a fast they should proclaim a thanksgiving. His advice was taken, and from that day to this, they have in every year observ’d circumstances of public felicity sufficient to furnish employment for a Thanksgiving Day, which is therefore constantly ordered and religiously observed.”

"The Real Story of the First Thanksgiving," as told by Franklin himself (below), is just one of the many topics covered in The Compleated Autobiography by Benjamin Franklin.

Read full story at:

Holiday Bulletin

Happy Thanksgiving from all of the folks here at Keith: Inside/Outside. Give thanks with a grateful heart.
Snow finally fell in Nampa. I enjoy seeing the wind swirl the snow across the road. Unlike our readers from Pennsylvania, New York, Vermont, and all the rest of the blue states, we from the Gem State never see nor'easters.

Last post about Sam

Thank you to alert reader Bethany who sent me the following link concerning Sam:

Sam is no longer with us. He went on to doggie heaven where he is now cavorting with Snoopy, Ol' Yeller, and Lassie along with countless other canines who have gone on before. He has gone to a place where tears will never dim the eye. A place where (hopefully) he received a new body and a new moniker. Anything beats being known as Sam, world's ugliest dog.

If Sam could look down and communicate with us, I'm sure he would say: This truly is heaven. No more Donald Trump.

So long, Sam.

Major Correction

I have already been receiving e-mails about my erroneous posting concerning Sam. Sam is a dog, not a cat. This, people, frightens me even more. Even more disturbing was an e-mail I received stating that Sam recently met with Donald Trump.

Now, I don't know what you think about this, but when a dog looking as bad as Sam can get through to a rich guy like Trump, we're in trouble. The dog should be a matter of national security.

It disturbs me even more that a wealthy TV star/entrepreneur like Mr. Trump would take the time to converse with a dog. If Sam does lunch with Shirley McLaine, it's time to put him to sleep.


The other night, I was over at the Boise International Airport to pick up Ray and Lenea on their return trip from Indiana. I had Trey with me and as we sat in the waiting lobby I noticed other people in the seating area grasping brightly colored balloons, mostly red and blue, a few white, while several others were holding American flags. I figured it out as a little girl walked by me with a picture of a Marine on the back of her shirt and underneath the words, "My hero, My Daddy". These families were waiting for the arrival of their sons, their daughters, their husbands and wives, daddys and mommys.

All of a sudden, my world slowed down, and I begin to tune into the conversations going on around me. I heard two military wives discussing what is was going to be like to have their husbands home. One was remarking that her boy was a year and a half when his daddy left for Iraq and his only concept of a father was a photograph in the living room. She said the little guy often touches the picture, "trying to feel what his father is like". The other mom remarked that her 5 year-old was almost 3 when his father left for service. As I listened to the women talked, the little boy kept interrupting, asking "Is Daddy going to have the same brown shirt and pants he had on when he left?" As I looked around the room, I began to feel the excitement that was in the air, the anticipation expressed on the faces around me. Their loved ones were coming home!

I looked down at Trey and as he looked up at me had one of those sentimental "what-if" moments. What if I was called to serve my country? What if I had to be separated from this little guy who I love with everything in me? What if I wasn't able to see my family for months, years at a time?

All of a sudden I was struck by the sacrifice of these men and women who willingly serve our country all over the world. I'm sure they don't want to be away from their families any more than I would want to be separated from mine. But they do it because they believe in what the US represents. They do it to bring a better life to others around the globe.

If you're like me, you are sick of hearing all of the arguements about what's going on in Iraq. Whether we should be there or not, whether or not we should have gone in the first place. It's been negativity overload recently as both sides fire potshots at the other. All the while, over on the other side of the world far away from the political posturing, the protests, the soundbites, men and women perform their duties (many times in harm's way) to ensure that we are safe and free.

I'm grateful. I'm indebted to the men and women that walked into the airport Monday night. I'm not a crying type of guy, but I felt my eyes getting a little misty as I witnessed the hugs, the laughter, and the kisses. The kids screaming joyously, running toward daddy, while the little children hid shyly behind mommy trying to figure out who this guy was. The Moms and Dads, many with tears running down their face, welcoming their kids home. It all painted a picture that I won't be forgetting this Thanksgiving. It doesn't get much better than this.

Thanks! May God bless and protect our servicemen and servicewomen wherever they may be. You and your families, you guys are my heroes. You also reminded me to be thankful for every moment I have with the family God has blessed me with.

Weird photo of the day

OK, I promise, I'm not going to turn this blog into a site that posts pictures that we all have forwarded to us. But, I did have to post this pic e-mailed to me by Becca. This is messed up. This is what happened to the cat that disappeared in Dale Bailey's garage. I told Carrie she better watch out for that cat, but did she listen? No!

Now, I have to let you know that I have turned into a person who isn't fond of the feline line of the animal kingdom. I did have a cat when I was a kid, but Shad acted like a dog. Very sensible and matter-of-fact. Cats as a whole are snooty, arrogant, and downright cruel. There are 3 cats in my neighborhood who have all decided that my front yard slightly resembles a Port-A-Potty. They take full advantage of what they perceive to be it's primary use. Much to my chagrin.

However, if I ever see a cat that even slightly resembles the above in our immediate vincinity (read, Idaho), I'm handing it the keys and moving to Florida. I'll take a hurricane any day over the cat from Dante's Inferno.


Tuesday, November 22, 2005

When Keithie was king

Once upon a time there was a brown-haired chap who had the name Keithie bequeathed on him by his mother who had to put an "e" on the end of every name so that when she called the name, the "e" would ring and carry throughout the neighborhood (other examples of "e" names include Raydie, Lynnie, etc.). This young man was proud of his hair-spray encrusted locks, so much so that he would spend 45 minutes or more getting it right (which, as you can tell from the picture, never happened). God, seeing his obsession, blessed him with baldness. Yes, that's right. Blessed. Today, I spend approximately 20 seconds in front of the mirror, if that, and abstain from all hair-care products.

When I look at the picture, my first reaction is "Thank You, Lord, for baldness."

This picture first appeared on a recording released by the Waggoner family. The recording still exists in cassette tape form. Order one today.

Back to the Future Tuesday

It was suggested to me by my good friend Chuck that I institute a "back to the archives" day upon which I feature memorabilia that probably mean nothing to anyone but myself. So, from here on out Tuesday will feature a blast from the past. Enjoy.