Monday, December 30, 2013

Marvelous Pictures of Grand Canyon: Once in a Decade!

Breathtaking images capture river of fog filling the Grand Canyon in a weather phenomenon that happens just once every DECADE.
Friday morning, the gorges of the Grand Canyon were filled with fog in a rare temperature inversion.
A temperature inversion happens when hot air high up acts as a seal to keep cold air pollution and fog trapped below.
While inversions happen once or twice a year at the Grand Canyon, a full inversion is more unusual, happening closer to every 10 years.
By Ashley Collman
PUBLISHED: 19:22 GMT, 30 November 2013 | UPDATED: 20:49 GMT, 30 November 2013
Those who decided to skip Black Friday shopping in favor of a trip to the Grand Canyon yesterday got to see the natural wonder
From an extraordinary perspective.  Due to a rare weather phenomenon, the canyon's famous gorges were filled with a river of fog.
According to the national park's Facebook page, the fog was caused by something called a 'temperature inversion.'
This happens when warm air acts as a lid to seal cool air near the ground.  That means all pollution and fog is trapped and unable to rise.
Filling the abyss: The Grand Canyon's gorges were filled with fog Friday  morning, creating quite the   Kodak moment
Filling the abyss:  The Grand Canyon's gorges were filled with fog Friday morning, creating quite the Kodak moment.
Trapped: A temperature inversion is caused when warm air higher up creates a lid to trap cool air below, and all pollution and fog created near the ground
Trapped:  A temperature inversion is caused when warm air higher up creates a lid to trap cool air below,
and all pollution and fog created near the ground.
Kingdom in the clouds: According to park rangers, the fog was caused by a weather phenomenon called a 'temperature inversion'
Kingdom in the clouds:  According to park rangers, the fog was caused by a weather phenomenon called a 'temperature inversion.'
Ranger Erin Whittaker told MailOnline that temperature inversions happen on average once or twice a year,
but never producing such a picturesque full inversion.
Most of the inversions only fill up parts of the canyon, or occur on cloudy days.
Yesterday's inversion happened against a perfectly clear blue sky, enveloping the entire canyon -
an event Ranger Whittaker says happens about every 10 years.
Ranger Whittaker says some of the tourists visiting the canyon on the busy holiday weekend were disappointed
they couldn't see the Colorado River below, and just figured it was a normal weather pattern.
Worth waiting for: Apparently park rangers  wait years to see a temperature inversion happen in the canyon
Worth waiting for:  Apparently park rangers wait years to see a temperature inversion happen in the canyon.
Ocean of fog: While the weather caused the canyons to be covered up, many still turned out to photograph the  event
Ocean of fog:  While the weather caused the canyons to be covered up, many still turned out to photograph the event.
But she and the other rangers tried to explain just how lucky they were to see the canyon in a perfect inversion.
Once word spread, locals turned out to photograph the unusual view.
'Word spread like wildfire and most ran to the rim to photograph it.  What a fantastic treat for all!' wrote Ranger Whittaker.
Ranger Whittaker described it as being like a 'really awesome beach day' with all the locals leaving their posts to head to the beach to enjoy themselves.
Spilling over: 'Word spread like wildfire and most ran to the rim to photograph it,' wrote park Ranger Erin Whittaker
Spilling over:  'Word spread like wildfire and most ran to the rim to photograph it,' wrote park Ranger Erin Whittaker.
Holiday special: 'What a fantastic treat for all,' Ranger Whittaker added

Sunday, December 29, 2013

The Misleading Genderqueer Dialectic

Written by Gary Isbell
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One of the first principles of logic is the Law of Contradiction, which states that something cannot be, and not be at the same time and place. Any child can understand this because we are hardwired to think this way, however the LGBTQ crowd cannot seem to get it. The term genderqueer has appeared out of thin air and is supposed to mean that a person is attracted to male or female, both or neither. It is a self-identifying label that also means that one is neither male nor female but an androgynous hybrid or rejection of both. If this seems confusing—it is. When one violates the principles of logic, chaos ensues.

Welcome to the delusional world of gender politics where everyone tries to escape the binary definition of sexuality. It is not enough that those who hold these theories affirm this intellectual chaos. Now, through political correctness, the general public is held hostage to play this bizarre game by accepting the dialectic of their ever-morphing lifestyle, lest they be accused of discrimination.

This veritable dictatorship is now attempting to oblige everyone to accept their preferred gender pronouns, known as PGPs for short, which change from one moment to the next and implement the use of a bizarre language corresponding to their behavior, such as ze, sie, e, ou and ve.

 For more, see link below:

The Misleading Genderqueer Dialectic

Thursday, December 26, 2013

Christmas Outside the Box

Written by John Horvat
Christmas Outside the BoxAs I was reading an article on an online news site, I chanced upon an advertisement for a beautiful Christmas tree. Indeed, it was an actual Christmas tree, not a holiday, winter or sparkle tree that celebrates some unknown winter solstice festivity.

This letter unapologetically used the word Christmas and the tree actually looked inviting enough to conger up memories of Christmases past. In a nanosecond of Christmas spirit, I clicked upon the attractive image and learned about how I might acquire a similar tree for home or office.

The tree, it turns out, is a high-tech artificial pre-lit tree that can be sent to your home in a box, wheeled into your living room and assembled in less than three minutes. Once assembled using its easy-to-use illustrated instructions, you have nothing left to do but activate the lights with the remote control (batteries included) and stand back to enjoy the stunning beauty of your instant Christmas tree experience.

It would seem there is no easier way to go on the offensive in today’s cultural war on Christmas than to fill all places with such trees in any of its six varieties and deck the halls with boughs of synthetic holly!

Far be it for me to criticize any Christmas tree, real or otherwise. In the present cultural climate, any tree that calls itself Christmas is a victory over politically-correct conformity. However, I cannot help but think that this pre-lit ready-to-use boxed Christmas tree with its “miracle” technology is a fitting symbol of where we have gone wrong in our culture and its celebration of Christ’s birth.

We live in a culture of instant gratification where we must have everything right away and effortlessly. This does not only involve indulging in sensual delights but also our experience of wholesome and uplifting things like Christmas trees.

In our frenzied desire for instant and effortless mass consumption 24/7, we have engaged in what I call the “frenetic intemperance” of throwing off legitimate restraints and engaging in consumption that ignores those cultural and spiritual values that normally serve to temper and give meaning to life.

We have built, it is true, a vast market system that is undoubtedly convenient, plentiful, and inexpensive. Yet, in the process, we have sacrificed that human touch that so delights and enriches us. In the name of maximizing efficiency and increasing consumer convenience, a spirit of dreary sameness descends upon the markets. The result is boxes upon boxes of nearly identical high-tech pre-lit trees that lack soul.

It is this human element that is so essential to the traditional Christmas tree. The spiritual act of creating a unique and marvelous tree still leads millions of Americans to buy real trees and decorated them with a hodge-podge of ornaments and lights. It is precisely the time spent together decorating and the extra effort involved that makes the real Christmas tree so special and memorable…and what makes the three-minute pop-up tree so utterly forgettable.

This human element also confers authenticity and meaning upon the Christmas tree because it becomes an expression of those who prepare it. It gives rise to the creativity of traditional ornaments and wholesome traditions. In other words, the human element brings about true culture and not the pre-packaged substitutes found in so many of today’s sterile shopping malls..

Of course, our problem is not just Christmas trees but a whole culture of unrestraint that has invaded all fields. It leads to rushed schedules and stress-filled lives caused by our impatience with time and space based on the idea that nothing should stand between ourselves and the objects of our gratification. Tethered to our mobile devices, we are constantly feeding a restless desire for new sensations, stimuli and thrills. When you must have everything instantly and effortlessly, there is the temptation to turn the Christmas season into one more of those sensations. We are encouraged to buy the instant Christmas tree experience rather than experience that special instant called Christmas.

Amid such noisy distractions, there is little time to reflect upon the true peace of Christmas; it is easy to lose track of the “reason for the season”—the birth of the Christ Child. In the manger in Bethlehem, we can find the balm that will sooth our agitated souls and take solace, “For a child is born to us, and a son is given to us.”(Is. 9:6)

Christmas invites us to reflect upon those things that really matter. In a Christmas-tree-in-a-box culture, it invites us to think outside the box.

Christmas Outside the Box | Return to Order

Tuesday, December 24, 2013

Unexpected Christmas Concert Suprises Mall Shoppers

From the students of St. Louis de Montfort academy.

Sunday, December 22, 2013

Traditional parenting, spanking, morality are out, drugs to control kids behavior are in - Health & Wellness - Catholic Online

LOS ANGELES, CA (Catholic Online) - According to Consumer Reports, doctors are prescribing powerful psychotropic drugs to children at a rate that has tripled in the past 10-15 years. Doctors prescribe these drugs to treat serious psychiatric conditions such as schizophrenia, and are increasingly prescribing them to treat lesser behavioral problems in kids.

Doctors are prescribing the drugs to children as young as 2 years of age. Evidence now suggests these drugs may come with serious side effects such as weight gain, high cholesterol risk, and the possibility of type-2 diabetes, according to Consumer Reports.

The American Psychiatric Association is calling on doctors to revisit how they treat children with behavioral problems, suggesting that doctors refrain from using the drugs as a first-line treatment. Yet, hapless parents may still insist.

Doctors typically prescribe these drugs for schizophrenia and bipolar disorder, but they are now being given to kids with ADHD and autism. Doctors may prescribe any drug for any condition they feel it is medically necessary. 

It doesn't help that these kids often consume large quantities of sugar, caffeine, and are constantly stimulated by electronic devices.

Parents of today often turn to drugs as a first response to behavioral problems because traditional practices like spanking have become passé. 

Traditional parenting, spanking, morality are out, drugs to control kids behavior are in - Health & Wellness - Catholic Online

Thursday, December 19, 2013

Return to Order – in a Chocolate Shop

Return to Order – in a Chocolate ShopIn the words of one reader, the book, Return to Order, targets those who “grieve for the nation.” I could not have put better since it was indeed written for those who have the vision to look beyond their own self-interest and are concerned about the state of the nation. The difficult question is: Where do you find those who grieve for the nation?

I found my answer when I recently went to visit a man who was vaguely interested in holding a book signing in a most unlikely place—a chocolate shop. I must admit that I was somewhat skeptical about the possibilities.

However, since I was in the area, I decided to drop by and see if something could be arranged. Upon arriving, the young man at the counter informed me that the owner was out and was not expected back for the day. I explained to him how the owner had expressed some interest in a book signing and I would probably call back later. In the meantime, I ordered a small cup of the shop’s excellent ice cream.

As he served me, the young 20-year-old man unexpectedly asked: What’s your book about? I explained that it was about our frenzied and unbalanced economy and the need to return to the basic institutions of family, community and faith that serve to put economy back in balance. That is why we need to return to order.

He then asked if I thought the economy was due to crash, if I thought we are suffering from a moral crisis and other questions that surprised me by their depth and focus. Upon replying to his questions, I took out a copy of Return to Order that I had in my bag and showed it to him.

He looked at the book, asked the price. When I replied, he immediately bought it and asked me to sign it. It all happened so quickly that I was somewhat in a state of shock. With some skepticism I had sought to have a book signing at the shop, here I was actually signing a book on the counter.

However, the most interesting part was yet to come. The young man explained that he had read from the book of Isaiah and saw so many similarities between our times. As a consequence, he was preparing to fast for the nation. In other words, he truly grieved for the nation.

And so I learned a lesson. Those who grieve for our nation can be anyone—even among 20- year-old young men—and found anywhere—even in a chocolate shop.

Return to Order – in a Chocolate Shop | Return to Order

Wednesday, December 18, 2013

Our Christmas Gift: A Free Kindle copy of Return to Order

Our Christmas Gift: a Free Kindle copy of Return to OrderHave a “Return to Order” Christmas by getting your FREE Kindle copy of Return to Order on Amazon, available until midnight on Friday, December 20.

Our Christmas Gift: a Free Kindle copy of Return to Order | Return to Order

Tuesday, December 17, 2013

Cardinal Burke: We Can Never Talk Enough About Moral Law

Life Site News ^ | 12/13/13 | John-Henry Westen
Vatican Cardinal Raymond Burke has spoken publicly about remarks by Pope Francis that have been interpreted in the media to mean that the Church should focus on "essentials" rather than abortion or homosexual "marriage."

“What could be more essential than the natural moral law?” said Burke in an interview which aired yesterday on the EWTN flagship program the World Over Live. “We can never talk enough about that as long as in our society innocent and defenceless human life is being attacked in the most savage way,” the cardinal told EWTN’s Raymond Arroyo.

Read more here:

Thursday, December 12, 2013

Blessed Christmas from the Air Force

Probably the best Flash Mob performance you will ever see. Go Air Force!

Wednesday, December 11, 2013

A Double-Header Of Blasphemy: Protest Now!

The Most Fabulous Story Ever Told is being shown as “holiday fare” at (1) Kalita Humphreys Theater in Dallas, TX, and also at (2) City Space Theatre in Oklahoma City, OK, and this blasphemous play is a vile insult to the Mother of God! – because she is insulted as a lesbian!
(Warning: descriptions are disturbing) 
Send your e-protest message to both theaters. 
Press reports say The Most Fabulous Story Ever Told 
portrays Our Lady as a lesbian
presents a homosexual version of the Old
Testament, with scenes of “Adam and
Steve” in full frontal nudity
Because protests work! But only if thousands speak out.
That’s why it’s urgent that you help us get this very urgent message to 250,000 Catholics over the Internet, to spread the word against this awful blasphemy to Our Lady.
Trusting in Our Lady and your help, we’ve already placed a 30-day ad in the ‘carousel’ at the top of the Bible section of Catholic Online and are seeing good reaction.
And on December 5th, Mr. Francis Slobodnik, director of your annual National Rosary Rally Crusade in our Kansas Office, travelled 5 hours south with his family and a small group through the recent incredible Midwest Ice Storm, and shivered thoroughly to lead your on-site protest of this blasphemous play in Oklahoma City, OK.
And to lead the protest this past Sunday, December 8, Feast of the Immaculate Conception, we flew Mr. John Ritchie and 3 full-time volunteers to Dallas, TX, from our headquarters in Spring Grove, Pennsylvania, plus Mr. Thomas Drake and 3 more of our full-time volunteers made the 8-hour drive all the way from our regional bureau in Louisiana to fortify that on-site reaction and 15-decade rosary rally of reparation.
Lately, we got the blasphemous “Testament of Mary” play (written by homosexual playwright Colm Toibin) to close after only 2 weeks in a planned 6 week off Broadway run in New York City.
Before that we got the blasphemous homosexual “Jesus” play Corpus Christi canceled at two theaters. Also, Planned Parenthood was deleted from the websites of two Catholic universities due to our protests. And many more.
But these protests worked ONLY because thousands joined us.
The Most Fabulous Story Ever Told can be shut down if we get thousands of Catholics to say CANCEL THE INSULT TO OUR LADY.
Otherwise, people will continue to see:
According to City Pages: “Contrary to church doctrine, the Virgin Mary turns out to be a flaky lesbian… Adam, Steve, and company have gathered in a Chelsea loft to celebrate Christmas and a second immaculate conception.” 
So please:
Send your e-protest message to both theaters.

Tuesday, December 10, 2013

Trappist Monks Make the World’s Best Beer

Trappist Monks Make the World’s Best BeerBy Luis Dufour.
For many years, Westvleteren XII beer, produced at the Abbey of Saint Sixtus of Westvleteren (Belgium) has been chosen as the world’s best by thousands of experts. This year it was voted the “Best Beer in the World.” [1]

As a result of the beer’s popularity, demand for this beer has skyrocketed while supply has been steady. Many customers are asking the abbey to increase production.

However, the abbey is unwilling to do it. “For us, life in the abbey comes first, not the brewery,” explained Monk Mark Bode to the newspaper De Morgen. Increased production would disturb the lives of the 30 Trappist monks who lead a life of seclusion, prayer and manual labor.

It is amazing that such a small group of monks can compete with and excel in quality against the world’s biggest breweries. In addition, many micro-breweries try to imitate the abbey’s procedures. But all in vain.

In fact, demand for Westvleteren is so high that stores can’t keep up with demand. The Trappist monks are forced to limit the quantity sold per customer.

The monks follow none of the rules for good marketing. They are not used to giving interviews and the media feel slighted when refused. Nor do the friars advertise their beer. Furthermore, their monastic beer has been sold without a label since 1945.

The abbey recently made an exception to their policy by granting an interview so as to put a stop to rumors about their plans. Monk Mark Bode confirmed to the media that the abbey has no intention of increasing production in spite of rising demand.

“We make beer for a living, but we do not live to make beer,” he clarified. All extra proceeds go to charity. The monks want to produce only enough for the community to go on with their lives of silence, prayer and contemplation.

The monks of Saint Sixtus shrug off the fame justly earned by their beers. Non-monastic visitors to the abbey are generally dissuaded from entering the abbey proper but can obtain information about the abbey and its beers at a visitor’s center.

These are living remnants from the Middle Ages, an epoch when, according to the teaching of Leo XIII, the philosophy of the Gospel permeated institutions, and in which civilization produced fruits –and beers— above all expectations.

Trappist Monks Make the World’s Best Beer | Return to Order

Monday, December 9, 2013

Getting the Story Right

Getting the Story RightA review of Infiltrated: How to Stop the Insiders and Activists Who are Exploiting the Financial Crisis to Control Our Lives and Our Fortunes (McGraw-Hill Professional, August 2013) by Dr. Jay Richards written by John Horvat II

All too often economic decisions are not determined by the facts on the ground but by the way facts are perceived. The situation is made worse when perceived facts are put together in a narrative that delivers an account diametrically opposed to reality. In such cases, who controls the narrative, controls public policy.

Jay Richard’s masterful new book Infiltrated is a story that unmasks the false narrative that came out of the 2008 sub prime mortgage crisis. He manages to untangle the labyrinth of people, places and organizations that threw the nation into crisis and almost brought down the system. The book is a who’s who of the key characters that were involved in the crisis.

However, more importantly, the book sets the facts straight and tells a true narrative of what actually happened. The author dispels the popular belief among media and the public that the greedy actions of big banks caused the crisis. Now, five years afterward, Richards casts a wide net to sift through the confusion and expose some of the principal characters that orchestrated the crisis that began in September 2008. He provides a socioeconomic analysis of what happened and examines the continuing debate over who is to blame for the crisis and who is still trying to gain from it.

Perhaps the message of the book is best described by its long subtitle: How to Stop the Insiders and Activists Who are Exploiting the Financial Crisis to Control Our Lives and Our Fortunes. In other words, the story is hardly over. The false narrative still continues and controls public policy. Richards especially focuses on the Dodd-Frank Act, which adds tens of thousand of pages of regulations on financial institutions based on a false understanding of the crisis.

“That false understanding provided the motivation for passing the Dodd-Frank Act, which supporters claimed would prevent a future financial crisis,” Richards says. “But the facts show otherwise—and the truth is far more insidious. It is only by understanding the real cause of the crisis that we can prevent another one.”

The real story, Richards claims, is a terrible tale of catastrophic and misguided government policies, loan brokers, media and activist groups that actually created a market for risky loans and led to the mammoth housing bubble in 2008. It was a vast network of liberal groups and individuals that loosened lending standards to an unprecedented degree. Richards gives the example of how only 1 in 200 mortgages had a down payment of 3 percent or less in 1990. By 2007, it was one in three. It was no wonder the system came tumbling down.

However, the danger remains grave. Richards argues: “What few realize is that the same politicians and activists who crafted these destructive policies have used the crisis to continue those policies and increase their power over the financial sectors of our economy. These include sectors far removed from mortgages and will affect the financial well-being of every American.”

That is why books like Infiltrated are so important. They create awareness of what went wrong and how to avoid such mistakes in the future. In addition, Richards provides a chapter with practical steps about what can be done to put America back on course. However, he warns that if such lessons are not learned, America may be setting itself up for a future crisis that will dwarf the calamity of 2008.

The first and most important step is to unmask the false narrative about the present economic crisis. Infiltrated and other books like it do a great service by making it clear where the blame lies. Best of all, they help Americans get the story right.

Getting the Story Right | Return to OrderReturn to Order

Wednesday, December 4, 2013

Gooey Butter Cakes ...From St. Louis

Gooey Butter CakesBy Michael Jordan.

In the book, Return to Order, John Horvat talks about healthy regionalism in this way: “Accordingly, they come to understand that their region is made for them and they for their region. For them, the region has a wide variety of supreme delights that no other place can offer.”

The following article tells the story of one of those supreme delights.

Over the years my wife has kept in touch with her Auntie “M” by phone. Auntie M lives in the San Francisco Bay Area, and every Monday morning at eleven o’clock sharp without fail, she calls. It has become known in our house as “the Monday Phone Call.” Their conversations usually lasts anywhere from two to three hours.

They talk about everything and anything; from their children to the State of the Union to the price of eggs. In their last call, Aunt M related what she thought was a funny story.

Recently she and her husband, my wife’s Uncle Mark, took a trip to St. Louis, Missouri to visit his family. Uncle Mark is in his late fifties, a heartland boy, born and bred in that great state. He thinks of himself as technically savvy, being up-to-date on all the latest gadgets. He joined the Navy straight out of high school and spent over 30 years in the military, 27 of them as an officer’s chief on the USS Constellation.

This was going to be his first trip home in quite a few years. He was looking forward to seeing his mother and siblings, the neighborhood where he grew-up, and the delight of having a large piece of Gooey Butter Cake!

Over the years, every time Uncle Mark had come home for a visit he would go to the bakery in his old neighborhood to buy a Gooey Butter Cake.Gooey Butter Cakes are a specialty of the St. Louis Area. They are found nowhere else in the country, and as far as Uncle Mark was concerned, his bakery makes the best of the best. Its Gooey Butter Cake border on the sublime!

He would always buy a number of cakes and bring them home to his family. When any family member from St. Louis would come to visit, they would always bring one of these wonderful cakes. This year he was going to buy five Gooey Butter Cakes to share with his children, and grandchildren. He especially wanted his grandchildren, who had never tasted such a treat, to experience something from the boyhood of their grandfather.

On the way to the airport in the morning, he stopped at the bakery and bought five Gooey Butter Cakes fresh out of the oven. His sister had given him a large red cooler, similar to a suit case on wheels with a handle. He very carefully stacked the treasured cakes into the cooler and off they went.

At the airport they checked- in their bags and proceeded to face that grueling experience known as security. Once through the security checkpoint, they stood in line at the gate to board the plane. Auntie M looked at her husband noting that he was standing there with the biggest smile on his face since he was certain no one was noticing the bright red cooler next to him.

She said to him, “You know, you’re going to have to check that in as baggage?”
He replied confidently:” No I won’t, it will fit in the overhead.”

She looked at the cooler and said to herself: “There is no way that is going to fit in the overhead.”

After boarding the plane and finding their seats, Uncle Mark tried to stow the cooler in the overhead. Aunt M heard her husband mutter under his breath, “It won’t fit.” Next he tried stowing it under the seats and again muttered: “It won’t fit!”

Out of desperation, he placed the bright red cooler on the floor between them hoping no one would notice it. As the plane was getting ready for take-off, the stewardesses were making their final check, when the stewardess noticed Uncle Mark’s cooler.

She said to him in a cool and impersonal tone: “Sir, you need to stow that in the overhead.”

Uncle Mark replied, “I have already tried, it doesn’t fit.”

The stewardess responded,” Then you must stow it under your seat.”

Uncle Mark said quietly,” I can’t. It’s too big.”

The stewardess then said, ‘Sir, you must check it in as baggage.”

Uncle Mark then started, “You don’t understand! I can’t check this in as baggage!”

Why not?!” asked the stewardess doubtfully. “What’s in the cooler?”

Five Gooey Butter Cakes” was Uncle Mack’s reply.

The stewardess’s eye widened, “Five Gooey what?!”

Five Gooey Butter Cakes!” Uncle Mark explained. “Gooey Butter Cakes are made only in St .Louis. It is a tradition and you can’t find them anywhere else in the world. When I was a boy every Sunday on the way home from Mass, my family would stop at the bakery in our neighborhood and buy a Gooey Butter Cake.”

Well, you will still have to check them in as baggage,” she said.

Then uncle Mark said,” No I can’t do that, they will be ruined, or lost, and besides they are for my children and grandchildren.”

By this time the other stewardess came down the aisle. Wondering what the delay was about she asked, “Is there a problem?” The first stewardess replied, “Yes, this man’s cooler won’t fit in the overhead and he can’t check it in as baggage. The second stewardess asked, “Why?” She replied, “Because it is full of Gooey Butter Cakes!” “Gooey what?” At this point, both Uncle Mark and the first stewardess explained the whole story. The second stewardess thought a moment and said,” I have an idea. We can stow them in the front in our refrigerated locking cabinet.”

To this, they all happily agreed. The rest of the first flight was uneventful. On the second leg of the flight, Uncle Mark was prepared. He knew exactly what to do when the stewardess would tell him he needed to stow his cooler. He confidently replied, “It won’t fit. Could you please stow it in the locked cabinet in the front of the plane as they did on the previous flight?”

However, the stewardess replied, “We don’t do that.” So Uncle Mark explained the importance of the cooler and its contents. However, it was to no avail as this stewardess was less sympathetic. Uncle Mark tried to plead with her one last time, “This is for my children and my grandchildren!” The stewardess relented, “I don’t know what we can do, but I will talk with the captain and see what he says.”

After a few minutes, the stewardess returned. Aunt M was sure that Uncle Mark would have to check in his big red cooler. The stewardess explained that this was a very unusual situation, but the captain would allow him to keep his cooler aboard the plane under one condition. He would have to place the cooler in the seat next to the window, and strap it in with the seat belt. To this, Uncle Mark happily complied. For the rest of the flight he sat next to his cooler with the biggest smile on his face.

After the flight had landed Uncle Mark and Aunt M waited for all the other passengers to deplane before unbuckling the cooler. As they made their way down the aisle, they noticed the captain was standing at the door. He greeted Uncle Mark and then asked, “What are Gooey Butter Cakes anyway?” So once again Uncle Mark explained the tradition of the cakes, his boyhood memories, and his desire to share them with his grandchildren.

The Captain said, “Couldn’t you have just ordered them from a catalog online?”

Uncle Mark just smiled and said, “No, it really wouldn’t be the same thing.”
* * *
Do any of our readers have a story of a supreme delight from their region?
Please send us your story at

Gooey Butter Cakes | Return to Order