Tuesday, February 15, 2005

What's new?

OK, OK. E.R. is gigging me for not posting since Friday. Well, truth is, there's not much to write about. The weekend was just kind of a gray blur. The daylight hours Monday were OK. I actually went in to "the office" briefly... it sounds so weird to write that since I no longer have the right to consider it "my" office -- not since I departed two and a half years ago.

It stirred up a weird combination of emotions, one being a huge loss of identity considering my lengthy affilation with the company. The other was same ol' story, umpteenth verse, feeling a huge loss of income during that time. I guess I really do miss having serious money coming in in a huge way. Anyway, my mind's not in the right place for dealing with that issue now.

I was pretty severely sick all night last night and got no sleep during the dark hours. And that made me somewhat less than optimally functional today. I tried stealing some time for naps between efforts to get some work done, and both suffered from the divided attention. It will be time to try again soon for a full night's sleep. I predict no problem in falling asleep and can only hope that tonight I'll manage to stay asleep without any rude interruptions.

Tomorrow morning I will be going to a funeral for a man I've known through church for the past 12 years. He was a true hero, not just militarily. During World War II he was a captain and pilot of a B-17 bomber in the Eighth Air Force, flying 33 combat missions over Germany. One day, the plane was heavily damaged and fell 10,000 feet before he could regain control. In recent years he shared that he heard a voice saying to him, "Harry, why haven't you tried to pray?"

He did pray and the plane stopped its fall. He and his crew were able to land in friendly territory.

After the war, he worked nearly 35 years as a reporter for United Press International, mostly covering the state Capitol, and in 1979 was inducted into the Oklahoma Journalism Hall of Fame.

I know the church will be bursting at the seams tomorrow for Harry's service. He was a pillar of strength, faith and devotion. By the time I came to know him, he had long been retired. It was by accident that I learned of his professional background. He rarely spoke about his work or his military service. But as long as he and his wife were physically able, he was present in the community of faith, always learning more through Bible study, and always teaching by his example. I'm sure he had no idea how his life influenced so many people who met him. The ripples in his pond touched more than he could have imagined.

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