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less is more 
is a  more or less monthly publication from author Ken Kuhlken
 
 
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Here is how old I am. Eighth grade. The original Hand Jive, from Johnny Otis  
 
 

Border? We Don't Need No Stinking Border.
 
On Easter, I visited with my son and daughter-in-law and his mother and her husband. All of us are or have been teachers, and all of us, believe it or not, are Democrat-leaning and attend an evangelical church. 
 
We all live about twenty miles from Mexico, so the subjectt of the border came up, and we talked about the “crisis”.  During that talk I tried to express my opinion that we should try to let in and accommodate most everyone, especially those in danger. My opinion, by the way, is in part a result of my having known many, many people from south of the border and being fond of all but some of the very rich among them. 
 
The arguments against my opinion were largely that we, as a country, couldn’t take on the burden of an essentially open border, that we didn’t have the resources.
 
Knowing quite well how naïve my opinion may appear, I still believe that we should do what we feel is right, in this case we should help our neighbors, as instructed in this parable, and let courage and integrity rather than fear decide our actions.
 
To objections, I can only respond that in fact we have no idea what the results of an open or more open border would be. To base our decisions on our fears or speculations is to me quite wicked if it causes us to choose against our principles. 


Here's a book that argues at length from a similar perspective, by a another arguably naive fellow. 
Real Progress
 
I'm probably closer to a dinosaur than to an advocate for progress, but now and then a novel idea or invention delights me.
 
The story begins long ago, when a student in my creative writing class was the wife of an ophthalmologist who gave me a bargain price on an eye exam. He had a nifty machine that not only could peer into my eyes but probably could view my soul if he had taken the liberty, only something distracted him. He noticed the beginnings of arteriosclerosis, hardening of the arteries, in the tiny veins deep inside my eyeballs. As I was young and a heart attack had taken my dad when he was young, that spooked me. Then my girlfriend Katrina come to the rescue. She told me that pectin clears the arteries, so I should eat lots of apples. 
 
I began a ritual of dicing an apple onto my cereal every morning, and after a year or so, when I visited another ophthalmologist who had the same kind of microscope, he reported that my tiny eyeball veins looked fine and healthy. 
 
So I kept dicing apples until, in Trader Joes, I noticed bags of apple wedges. And when I brought a bag home, my Zoe approved. In fact, if I gave her an apple wedge, she wanted to know if it was from one of those bags, and if it wasn't, she declined to eat it.
 
If I were smarter, I would digress here and attempt to analyze the motives behind kids' food choices. 
 
Maybe I would be smarter if I wasn't so much, in one way, like Mark Twain. He was and I am always on the lookout for labor- saving procedures and devices. Some might call us lazy. Read his Roughing It for memorable examples.

I began opting for the bagged apple wedges, which saved me perhaps thirty seconds each morning. However, I rarely used more than a half bag before the wedges browned severely.

Then on a Christmas shopping trip, at Home Goods, I saw an apple wedger. A true marvel.
 
                   

Not only does this gadget wedge a whole apple in one push, but the part that looks like a lid is actually a wedge and core ejector. Shove it up against the bottom of the wedger, the whole apple pops out all wedged and cored. In fact, I need to shove gently or the pieces fly all over. 
 
Mark Twain would approve, as do I, heartily. 
More?
 
Should you long for more of my wit and/or wisdom or whatever you choose to call it, here are some recent blog posts:

Obeying the President

Artists and A.D.D.

Bookselling in the Evil Empire
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Ever Onward,

Ken
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