Question the rule

What’s the problem with asking why any particular rule exists? Why do people ask, “are you questioning my authority?”? What is a policy, how is it different from a rule, and why doesn’t anyone know why the policy is in place?

I get in an unreasonable amount of trouble whenever I ask why a rule exists, typically at a job. Aren’t there reasons for these rules? I learned from Josh McDowell that there are precepts and principles. Precepts are like umbrellas and principles are like drops of rain. The reason why we put (create and enforce) an umbrella (a rule) over our head (in our household/company) is so we don’t get wet (suffer the consequences of breaking the rule). So what’s the reason for (e.g.) wearing dress shoes on a sales job? In most cases, it’s to look professional.

I once had a job where the dress code wasn’t ever enforced. I wore cross trainers to my training in a big city where the big bosses took time to train their salesmen and I wore them around the boss who hired me. It was only when a man came to “train” me that I was informed of the dress code. I expressed my objections to changing my style since it never stopped me from making sales, it wasn’t comfortable, and, my biggest reason of all, professionalism is a convention (like grammar and manners/etiquette). His objection to my first objection was, “it’s the dress code”. His objection to my second point was, “but, it’s the dress code”. He didn’t really understand what my third objection even after I spent a long time explaining it to him. If you’re interested in hearing what I mean, I encourage you to actually comment on this post.

A big reason why I didn’t trust him as someone who should be mentoring me is what happened on the first morning he went into the sales field with me. This first part of this story is funny (maybe in a you-had-to-be-there sort of way – sorry in advance, if it is). I was about to start working the night before on calling sales leads and scheduling appointments when he told me that he wanted to go with me to my first appointment. I protested and said, “what if my first appointment is at 0700?”. He replied, “I don’t care if your first appointment is at 0600, I’m going to go with you.”. I just said, in a dramatic way, “okaaayyy”, realizing that he didn’t understand how dedicated I was to the customer. I called him a short time later after pre-selling a customer who didn’t appreciate the service they received from a different pest control company (whose founder once worked for the company I did). They were definitely going to get better service from the company I worked for and I assured them of this. So I called the mentor and informed him that our first appointment was at 0600… and the location was 2.5 hours away! After he incredulously asked the time repeatedly, and me laughing, almost every time, he finally understood. That’s the end of the beginning part of the story. But the big thing was that I pre-sold them. I don’t think I would have arranged to show up at their house so early if I didn’t know I already made the sale. So, after completing my inspection, calculating the feet around the house, and giving the sales sheet to my (professional) mentor, he gives these farmers (who had plenty of land, cattle, and crops) a 10% discount! Their response, “okay”. Like it was no big deal! It was a big deal to me… but, before I keep ranting about this and sound like I’m complaining and not actually get back to my topic, I’ll just get to my point. He claimed to be professional, but he was definitely not a good judge of a paying customer when he saw one.

At another job, I was told that I wasn’t allowed to post quotes which included statements about truth and Jesus. This was on Federal property, but I was only subcontracted by the Federal government through my employer. So I didn’t get the benefits of the freedom to express myself. I was given the rules so I knew what they were. When my boss tried to tell me that I should take them down, I asked, “why? Did someone complain?”. They said, “it doesn’t matter”. After I said that it did, according to the rule book, they claimed that they were just doing their part to avoid any such conflict that may or may not happen. They also claimed that, as a “non-religious” company, that’s what they thought they should do. That was something that bothered me. If they were “non-religious” then they shouldn’t be saying anything about what goes on my cubicle walls, right? Later, I posted about 10 pieces of paper. On them were numbers which started with 3.14 and continued with 999,998 more numbers. I was told to take these down, too. I mentioned they weren’t religious and asked why I needed to take them down. I was told, “they have nothing to do with your work”. As my boss was turning away, I quickly asked if I could post pictures of my family. He said I could. Then I said, “but they have nothing to do with my work.” But he just got angry and said, “just take them down!”.

So… rules exist for professionalism (sometimes trying to overrule pragmatism) and as a way to keep the truth out – even if no one complains about it. At least these rules existed for those purposes.

Back to the questions at the beginning of this post. I don’t see any problem with asking why a rule exists if I’m going to follow it anyway. Sometimes the person needs to follow it before I tell them why, but I always tell them.

Why do people ask, “are you questioning my authority?”? I think this has a lot to do with the misconception that WE are the objective standard for the rules we enforce. As if WE ARE the rule or we don’t trust the person who is telling us to follow a rule.

It happens a lot, in many retail stores, that, when you need some additional support from them, they’ll deny you this help. If you ask them why, they’ll say, “that’s the policy”. If you ask them why it’s the policy they’ll tell you that they don’t know. Why do we need “policies” that people don’t know the reasons for? If it’s because other customers might abuse the process then say so! But don’t keep this information from the customer. It’s REALLY frustrating.

Anyway, that’s my rant on this subject. If you don’t like it then you’ll need to leave a comment about it… what?! Why can’t you just tell me what you think in person? Because that’s my policy :D. Have fun!

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Want H2O? We can’t trust you

If we did trust you we would give you a bigger cup… but we don’t. So here’s your 8 ounces of water.

Fast food restaurants don’t trust YOU! Even when you order from the drive-thru!

I wonder how many people would be so dedicated to getting a free soft drink for free that they’ll go to a restaurant drive-thru, order a water, and, having the normal type cup, RUN inside and fill it up with a soft drink. Would you spend the time to do it? Wouldn’t that be called stealing?

If I were to go to any restaurant, where the soft drinks are accessible for refills, and just start drinking directly from the machine, would the employees do anything? I wouldn’t put my mouth on it. I promise. Would they call the police and have them order me to pay the $1.07 for a small/kiddie cup or take me to jail for petty larceny?

Should I try to find out for everyone? (With the manager’s permission ahead of time, of course… which, I understand, is not as fun for some people, but I don’t want to find out the hard way what a police officer would do.)

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OH MY GOD! OMG!

Here’s something I’m excited about that doesn’t get me down too much.

The exclamation, “OH MY GOD!” is also seen in the forms, “oh my gawd!”, “oh my gaw!”, “oh my gosh!”, and even, “garsh” (by Goofy, remember?)

The last four (or five, if you count the acronym) are all euphemisms for the first. None of them are better or worse than the first either. No matter what, you’re still either speaking nonsense in place of it or you are directly using the one true God’s name in vain.

I was once under a wrong impression pertaining to this. In Philippians 3:19 it says for them described as “the enemies of the cross of Christ”, “[their] god is their appetite”. Whenever I would hear someone say, “Oh my god!” I would replace the word “god” with “stomach” so that they were saying, “Oh my stomach!”. But it would be wrong to do this. They don’t say or mean their stomach, but it can only be an offense to the only one true God that exists. If they were honest, they would say, “oh my stomach!”, but they don’t. So if you hear someone say this, and if you call yourself a Christian, you better correct them because it might be a good work which God prepared in advance for you to do. But at least now I’m over the bubble in my throat and the anger that I would feel every time someone on TV would say it. God knew it would happen already and there’s nothing I can do about it (when the people are on TV).

As for what is wrong with “OMG!” and the other four aforementioned euphemisms… the problem with them is that they are, just that — euphemisms. So what’s wrong with euphemisms, right?

According to etymonline, euphemism comes from two Greek words, “eu-” meaning “good” and “pheme” meaning “speak” and it comes from an “ancient Greece practice of the superstitious avoidance of words of ill-omen during religious ceremonies, or substitutions such as Eumenides “the Gracious Ones” for the Furies (see also Euxine)”. So… why be superstitious? Why say “gosh” when you really mean “god”? God knows what you mean, don’t you think? You might not intend to offend God, but you are only replacing one word with another to make yourself feel better. Why spell, “gawd” or “gaw” if you’re not really from Beverly Hills or the valley or whatever it’s called and believe you should type like you speak?

So what should we say?

How about we do what’s described in Romans 14:19 by pursuing peace and building each other up. Granted, this is a strange text to use as [a] proof [text] since I’m not using it in the context in which it is used. If there’s a better verse to use please let me know.

How about, instead of being so surprised by what’s happening around us, we be still and know that [He] is God? Instead of having these words on the tips of our tongues when something surprises us, what if we rehearsed saying something like, “Praise God!” or “Thank you Jesus!”? Even when you hit your thumb with a hammer? Yes. Why not? You can do it and it’s even Biblical to do it.

Look at these verses, which tell us to be content with the money we make, the money we have, any food and clothing we own, and even whatever the circumstances are.

So… try it out this weekend and let me know how you succeeded or failed. I have to work on it myself even as I’m being sanctified.

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Being Daddy, becoming a klutz

When I was a little kid I couldn’t figure it out. How was my Daddy SUCH a klutz?!

He would step on stuff that was right THERE on the floor – RIGHT IN FRONT OF HIM! I don’t know how he did it, but, in a moment, there would be broken toys and stuff and footprints on paper… what was WRONG with him?!

Then I had a baby boy (well, not me, my wife… and I want to say all sorts of things about how I had something to do with it and that part was fun, definitely funner than this labor part, but I won’t because that might be considered inappropriate). His name is Levi Joshua. He’s starting to talk/scream now and that’s pretty cool. He’s 4 months old now, by the way. My wife and I have been taking care of a beautiful and wonderful little girl since she was 5 months old. She’s now 3 1/2 years old. But that’s all I’m going to say about her for reasons some of you know.

She left toys out. I, being the ninja that I am, was able to walk softly on every eggshell she left on the floor and was able to float over the hedge maze of toys she might have left out. But then something happened. I had a son. Unlike her, loud noises will wake him. I guess that might be a difference because, since I’m getting less sleep, I must be losing my sense of balance and ninja-like reflexes. So when I stepped on a picture frame, which was left on the floor, and broke the glass I was surprised. No big deal, probly just an isolated incident. But then I started stepping on other toys, like dolls and necklaces. Things that were RIGHT THERE in front of my face. It doesn’t tickle when you step on those little plastic dolls that are really hard and try to break your arches so you have flat feet.

So I guess it’s all my fault that my Daddy’s a klutz (maybe). I’ll definitely give him the benefit of the doubt and, considering I’m going to be blaming my son for all of this, the benefit of having someone else to blame for his klutziness.

How many toys did your Daddy break? Are you a Daddy now and break toys and stuff, too? Will I ever catch up on sleep?

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The Lord’s Supper with Coke and Chips

I wanted to add on to my Pockets and socks, shoes, but I’ve decided to make a whole ‘nother post on just this subject. My Daddy went to some Methodist church somewhere one time and he noticed something stupid. I’m not sure if children were partaking of the Lord’s Supper at this particular church, but they might as well have been.

Instead of serving wine, or even wine that wasn’t fermented (i.e. grape juice), they served Coke (i.e. high fructose corn syrup or, depending on the year, sugar and water and a bunch of other chemicals).

Instead of serving bread they served potato chips (i.e. thinly sliced potatoes and salt). I’ll bet that the pastor didn’t change the words that Jesus spoke, but he might as well have.

Can you imagine?!

Then Jesus took the potato, pulled out his Swiss Army Knife, cut several thin slices, tossed them in the Spiegel Frying basket, waited a few minutes, dumped them onto a paper plate, sprinkled some salt on them, and said, “this is my body, which is given for you. Do this in remembrance of me.” Then he would have HAD to say, “when you say Spiegel you mean ‘quality’ when you say ‘frying basket’ you mean a basket that fries”, right? And in the same way He took the bottle after they had eaten, saying, “This bottle which is poured out for you is the new covenant in My blood with added sugar and some caramel and other top secret ingredients.”… right.

So, whether it’s dumbing the Lord’s Supper down for God’s children or for His children who are parents to them, it’s a big stupid thing to do.

Why can’t we keep it real? Just do what the Bible says and actually believe it! Would that be so bad?! If you don’t want your children to have wine then don’t allow them to be served the Lord’s Supper. The other implications of this are ridiculous, too. Imagine, Jesus is in the desert, in Matthew 4:3-4 we might read, “And the tempter came and said to Him, “If You are the Son of God, command that these stones become potato chips.”But He answered and said, “It is written, ‘MAN SHALL NOT LIVE ON POTATO CHIPS ALONE, BUT ON EVERY WORD THAT PROCEEDS OUT OF THE MOUTH OF GOD.'”

What have you seen being served in a church at the Lord’s Supper that wasn’t bread and wine/grape juice?

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Birth Control Pills KILL

It does make the womb impossible for a fertilized egg to attach to its wall.

How comfortable would you be if you had to enter just ONE building (in some post-apocalyptic fantasy which won’t ever happen) where everything you could ever need was in any given one of them, BUT all the doors are locked & the windows are impossible to break?

And all of this was done because the government (i.e. the governing BODY – not to be confused with “The Watchtower” – hahaha) “planned” for this situation because they couldn’t stand the thought of allowing someone to live in such a world.

Birth control pills passively murder your baby 😦

Don’t believe me? Prove it.

Or just check out these two sites: here’s a video & here’s a bunch of words from January 1998 reposted on April 21st, 2010 Even though it’s old it seems like it’s still relevant since it was reposted over 12 years later, right?

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Interview with local bee keepers

Have you heard of the correlation between cell phones & the reduced supply of honey?

This is the question I asked four different vendors at The Lincoln, Nebraska Farmer’s Market in the Haymarket yesterday morning. All four said that they did hear of it and all said they didn’t believe it.

I was able to ask 2 of the 4 of them if they owned cell phones and they admitted they did.

I was going to ask if they had ever noticed unusual behavior which they might attribute to the use of their cell phones, but it seemed unnecessary considering their presuppositions. However, one of the beekeepers actually volunteered that it wouldn’t be the cell phones that are the problem, but the cell phone towers. Another one stated that some of their best honey production is performed by bees at hives where there are 3 cell phone towers in the area.

One of the beekeepers actually gave wrong information when I asked him if he had heard of the study. He believed that the study had more to do with a natural disorientation that occurs when bees are driven around the country (between California and Florida and he mentioned one other state which I can’t recall the name of). He claimed that, “if you drove someone around the country and made them all disoriented” that eventually “you might wake up one morning and not know where you are.

All of the beekeepers did state that they believed that the scientific research was not conducted with a large enough sample (4 hives) and 1 beekeeper specifically used the phrase, “junk science”.

The actual study was conducted at a University in India. The credibility of the study has been compared to a scientific study performed by Junior High students.

Here’s a link to the Colony Collapse Disorder (CCD) study: http://www.ias.ac.in/currsci/25may2010/1376.pdf

The study states that there were two fifteen minute calls per day during peak the period of peak bee activity (1100-1500 hours) for two weeks between February and April. I’m not exactly sure what that works out to. Does that mean they did it twice a day for two weeks for a total of 14 times per week or was it only two weeks between February and April (which is 3 months)?

In any case, keep your cell phone. What’s the moral of the story? Whatever you do, do NOT tape your cell phone to the inside of a hive with the sole intention of calling it twice a day for 15 minutes for a two week period between February and April.

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