December 17, 2016: Saturday ONAIRprep

***DAILY DOSE OF WEIRD NEWS – FREE TO AIR! (Need to receive this earlier than when it’s posted? Get FTP access and receive a fully-produced version FREE with a customized tag specifically for your station or show! Contact me with your ONAIRprep username for details!)




Gee, it’s time for me again?!?  Well, deck my hall!  Good morning, (CITY)!  Time to rise and shine and blow the mistletoe out of your ears! –HaLife


For God did not send his Son into the world to condemn the world, but to save the world through him. –John 3:17

Mark 14:38 = Watch and pray so that you will not fall into temptation. The spirit is willing, but the flesh is weak.”

Mary said, “My soul glorifies the Lord and my spirit rejoices in God my Savior…. The Mighty One has done great things for me – holy is his name.” — Luke 1:46



God made him who had no sin to be sin for us, so that in him we might become the righteousness of God. — 2 Corinthians 5:21

Thought: When was the last time you thought of yourself as “the righteousness of God”? What does that mean anyway? It means that we have the best of qualities, found in the best of beings! But we know we are not god-like! We know our fallibility and flaws! We know our imperfections and our inconsistencies! How can we be “the righteousness of God”? Jesus, the perfect and sinless Righteous One of God, became our sin for us so we could be his righteousness. More than grace, that’s a miracle! And a miracle, dear friend of Jesus, is exactly what you are!!

Prayer: Thank you, gracious and loving Father, for saving me and making me perfect through your sacrificial gift of your Son. Please use me to communicate your grace and your salvation with someone around me who hasn’t accepted your grace. In the name of Jesus, my older brother and Savior, I pray. Amen.

The Thoughts and Prayers for Today’s Verse are written by Phil Ware. You can email questions or comments to

BIRTHDAY VERSE” OF THE DAY (The chapter and verse corresponds to the month and the day!)

Romans 12:17 NIV = Do not repay anyone evil for evil. Be careful to do what is right in the eyes of everybody.


(NOTE: Some holidays may be duplicated due to various calendars reporting conflicting dates)

Tonight is DOUBLE PARENT TRAP NIGHT. Watch both Parent Trap movies back-to-back. ***After all, you have no social life, right?

Today is TRY TO REMEMBER WHERE YOU HID THE CHRISTMAS GIFTS DAY.  ***People buy gifts and then hide them so the kids and loved ones won’t find them… but we’ve actually lost a couple of gifts through the years because we hid them so well we forgot where they ended up!  We still can’t find a crystal train we purchased for my wife’s dad back in 2004.

Today is WRIGHT BROTHERS DAY. In 1903 the Wright Brothers made their first flights at Kitty Hawk, North Carolina. Orville flew 120 feet in 12 seconds; Wilbur flew 852 feet in 59 seconds. ***Not even long enough to get their complimentary peanuts.


Clean Air Day
National Re-gifting Day (3d Thursday)

COMING UP NEXT (Just a list, we are not endorsing the holidays posted below.)


Answer The Telephone Like Buddy The Elf Day Link
Arabic Language Day Link
Give A Wine Club Day
International Migrants Day


(None Today)


International Human Solidarity Day
Games Day
Mudd Day
National Sangria Day 
Poet Laureat Day

World Day of Prayer and Action for Children Link


Ann & Samantha Day  Link
Celebrate Short Fiction Day
Crossword Puzzle Day
Forefathers Day
Humbug Day
International Dalek Remembrance Day
National Flashlight Day (Shortest Day of The Year)
National Homeless Persons’ Remembrance Day
Phileas Fogg Win A Wager Day
Short Girl Appreciation Day (Shortest day of the year)
World Peace Day/Winter Solstice
Winter (Winter Solstice) 5:44 AM EST


(None today)


Human Light Celebration


Chanukah (12/24-1/1)
Christmas Eve
Egg Nog Day Link


‘Phabet Day or No “L” Day
Christmas Pudding Day Link


Boxing Day (Canada)
National Candy Cane Day  Link
National Thank-you Note Day
National Whiner’s Day


63 AD: Jesus’ friend, Lazarus, died for the second time. ***If at first you don’t succeed…

1849: Thomas and William Bowler sold the first “bowler” hat in London. William Coke ordered it for hunting. ***MARLAR: He also used to wear his hunting cap while bowling.

1903: The Wright Brothers made their first flights at Kitty Hawk, North Carolina. Orville flew 120 feet in 12 seconds; Wilbur flew 852 feet in 59 seconds.

1925: Army Gen. William “Billy” Mitchell, outspoken advocate of a separate U.S. Air Force, was found guilty of conduct prejudicial to the good of the armed services. Twenty years after his death, he was awarded the Medal of Honor.

1933: In the first world championship football game, the Chicago Bears defeated the New York Giants, 23-21.

1934: Contemporary Christian songwriter Kurt Kaiser was born. He wrote “Oh How He Loves You and Me,” “Pass It On,” and “Master Designer.”

1936: Ventriloquist Edgar Bergen appeared for the first time on radio with his wooden friend Charlie McCarthy on The Rudy Vallee Show and became one of radio’s hottest acts. Bergen’s daughter Candice was television’s Murphy Brown. ***Did anyone not realize that the dummy was completely unnecessary? IT WAS RADIO!!!

1955: Unable to sleep, guitarist Carl Perkins got up and wrote a song on a paper bag. Less than 48 hours later, he recorded it at Sun Records in Memphis. It would become the first song ever to reach #1 on the pop, country & western, and rhythm & blues music charts: “Blue Suede Shoes.”

1969: An estimated 50 million viewers watched singer Tiny Tim (Herbert Buchingham Khaury) marry Miss Vicky (Victoria Budinger) on NBC’s ”Tonight Show.” The tiptoed through stuff together until 1977. Tim collapsed during a benefit in Minneapolis in November 1996 and never regained consciousness.

1975: Lynette “Squeakie” Fromme was sentenced in a Sacramento, California, federal court to life in prison for her attempt on the life of President Ford.

1979: Stan Barrett broke the sound barrier, reaching 739.67 miles per hour ON LAND at Edward Air Force Base in California. His rocket was powered by a 48-thousand horsepower engine and a side-winder missile. ***They also discovered quite by accident that if you scream while traveling at the speed of sound everyone can still hear you.

1989: “The Simpsons” debuted on the Fox television network.

1992: Actor Dana Andrews died at age 83. He made 64 films, including Tobacco Road, Laura, State Fair, Best Years of Our Lives, and The Ox Bow Incident.

1993: Fox Television outbid CBS for the rights to televise games of the National Football Conference.

1994: A Boston man was arrested at a hospital after taking two live lobsters from a supermarket tank and stuffing them down his pants. Police called it shoplifting. Doctors called it “a do-it-yourself vasectomy.”

2003: A bank robber in Tularosa, New Mexico, lost a bid to overturn his conviction by arguing the stupidity of the crime proved he was too drunk to be responsible. The defendant argued his attempt to rob the same bank teller who moments before had refused to cash his check was stupid enough to show he was inebriated. A compelling argument, but the court didn’t buy it.

2005: President George W. Bush acknowledged personally authorizing a secret eavesdropping program in the U.S. following Sept. 11th, 2001.


63 AD: Jesus’ friend, Lazarus, died for the second time.

1912: Yale-educated Chicago native Bill Borden, heir to a fortune in real estate and milk production, boards a ship to China via Egypt. Converted to Christ as a young man, Borden had given his inheritance and his life to the cause of world evangelism. Only a month after arriving in Egypt, he contracted spinal meningitis and died. However, publication of his story prompted many young people to enter the mission field.

1917: Bolsheviks confiscate all property of the Russian Orthodox Church and abolish religious instruction in the schools. Within two decades, at least 45,000 priests were reportedly martyred in the country.


  • TV character Bart Simpson, 37 (audio clip)
  • Actress (Resident Evil, Zoolander, The Fifth Element) Milla Jovovich, 41
  • actor (Gone in 60 Seconds, Saving Private Ryan, Flight of the Phoenix, Avatar) Giovanni Ribisi 42
  • actress (100 Girls, True Crime, Pleasantville) Marissa Ribisi 42
  • actor (“The District”, Barbershop, Save the Last Dance) Sean Patrick Thomas 46
  • actor (“The Closer”, “Get Real”) Jon Tenny is 55
  • Actor (Ernie Douglas on “My Three Sons”) Barry Livingston 63 (audio clip)
  • Actor (Independence Day, While You Were Sleeping, A League of Their Own) Bill Pullman, 63
  • Actor (A Mighty Wind, “SCTV”) Eugene Levy, 70
  • Actor (Ghostbusters, Miss Congeniality) Ernie Hudson, 71


(Music Artist Birthdays From

1910 : Sy Oliver

1934 : Karl Denver

1936 : Tommy Steele

1937 : Art Neville (The Neville Brothers)

1937 : Nat Stuckey

1938 : Carlo Little (first Rolling Stones drummer)

1939 : Eddie Kendricks (the Temptations)

1942 : Paul Butterfield (Paul Butterfield Blues Band)

1943 : Dave Dee (Dave Dee, Dozy, Beaky, Mick and Tich)

1948 : Jim Bonfanti (The Raspberries)

1949 : Paul Rodgers (Free, Bad Company)

1950 : Carlie Barrett (The Wailers)

1951 : Wanda Huntchinson (The Emotions)

1958 : Mike Mills (R.E.M.)

1961 : Sarah Dallin (Bananarama)

1972 : Craig “DJ Homicide” Bullock (Sugar Ray)


What is the body’s largest organ? The heart? The kidney? The liver?

Organs are any grouped tissues that form a functional unit. The large intestine sounds like a good choice, until we remember that at 5 feet it’s actually shorter than the 20-foot small intestine. The answer is something that few people realize is an organ: the skin. If the skin of a 150-pound person were spread out flat, it would cover approximately 20 square feet. So stop worrying about those extra pounds at your waistline – what’s a few inches out of 20 square feet?


This is just a tiny sample of the 5-6 pages of material you could be receiving three days a week from!

Jonny Diaz is making sure the guys on tour stay in shape. Jonny and his wife run a fitness gym in Nashville. Right now he’s out with Building 429 and front man Jason Roy says Jonny is a tough task master. He posted a rundown of one of the band’s workouts and added: kudos to Jonny Diaz for the near-death experience.


The Newsboys are planning something special for their spring Love Riot Tour. They announced this week that their concerts will include Rivals, a live theatrical performance of God’s Not Dead, each night during the tour.


Selah had some extra help in their weight loss efforts over the weekend. The trio is currently on their Rose of Bethlehem Christmas tour and catering for the tour was in what they described as the creepy basement of a high school, six flights of stairs below the concert venue. Group member Allen Smith posted a video as he made the treck from catering to their dressing rooms.


Worship leaders Shane and Shane reported a live reindeer sighting over the weekend. The Shane’s were performing at the Magnolia Silos, owned by Chip and Joanna Gaines in Waco, Texas, when they spotted the reindeer. They posted: Pretty sure it’s either Dancer or Dasher. Hard to say, though.


Jamie Grace admitted over weekend: sometimes I say things out loud that make perfect sense in my head. She was responding to a listeners confusion from earlier when Jamie had announced: “I lost my comb, do you think I can part my hair with scissors?”


Casting Crowns Megan Garrett may want to change shoes. She posted: Had the shoe toots today at church. So awkward walking to my seat during the quietness of prayer time, shoe loudly tooting with every step.


Andrew Thompson is currently a background singer and dancer for Mandisa. However, it isn’t his first time onstage. Mandisa says he actually began his career as the Oscar Mayer Weiner kid! She shared a video of Andrew performing at just three years old.


Switchfoot shared why they sing. Front man Jon Foreman posted: We sing because we’re alive. We sing because we’re broken. We sing because we refuse to believe that hatred is stronger than love. We sing because melodies begin where words fail. We sing because the wound is where the light shines through.


The latest edition of Bus Invaders features the band Skillet. The Digital Tour Bus invaded the Skillet bus this fall for episode 1072 of their feature. Get an inside look at Skillets tour bus by clicking on the link at


NeedToBreathe members Josh Lovelace recently answered questions online. Here are a few of his answers:

Q: Can you pick up any instrument and play it?

A: Music is not only what I do for a living but it’s a hobby too. Love trying new 

Q: what is your hair care routine like

A: Wake up. Look in mirror. Shrug shoulders. Add hairspray. 

Q: what’s the best part about having a newborn daughter?

A: So far, she doesn’t talk back. 

Q: Who’s the best athlete in the band?

A: Depends on the sport/activity. But I’m the best athlete at NBA2K on Xbox. 

Q: if you could only play ONE song for all of your future concerts- which one would you choose?

A: Brother 

Q: what is one instrument you wish you could add to your band?

A: I’ve always wanted to play fiddle. Any teachers out there?!


(No news on the weekends. As on ONAIRprep subscriber, you can get a fully-produced, customized version of the Daily Dose of Weird News FREE with a station or show specific tag! Email for details!)



According to a British survey, one in four house-hunters are put off buying a home because of the neighbor’s garish Christmas decorations.  ***Even worse, this survey was taken back in July.

Are you getting your pet a gift this Christmas?  Fifty-six percent of dog owners say they’ll buy their pets a gift this Christmas, but only 48 percent of cat owners plan a gift according to an Associated Press-Petside poll.  A majority of all pet owners-53 percent-plan to get their animals a present this holiday season.  ***It’s the least we can do, since they’ve been leaving little gifts on the carpet for us the rest of the year.

WONDER WOMAN (This feature will be disappearing in 2017)


DAILY COMEDY CLIP (This feature will be disappearing in 2017)

CLICK HERE TO DOWNLOAD TODAY’S EPISODE… Scott Gregory, “British Baseball”



CHRISTMAS 01 of 09

OPEN: And now,, (Show Name), and (Station Call Letters) bring you another inspiringly inspiring inspirational story in the never-ending deep-jungle soap-opera saga that is As the Jungle Turns!

CLOSE: Do you get the feeling Gruffy Bear is NOT going to get a good night’s sleep? And what does this all have to do with Christmas? Find out next time – As the Jungle Turns!

AS THE JUNGLE TURNS – SATURDAY/SUNDAY VERSION (This feature will be disappearing in 2017)


OPEN: And now,, (Show Name), and (Station Call Letters) bring you As the Jungle Turns! When last we left the jungle, all of the animals found out the source of the giant footprints… there were from a giant gorilla! Somehow, all of the animals were able to run away and hide from the gorilla in a giant, scary cave… and now Cheetah Bonita is thinking the gorilla might not be so mean.

CLOSE: Here we go again! Will Millard be able to escape the gorilla’s grip? Will the gorilla try and eat the other animals too? Find out next time, As the Jungle Turns!

***You may simulcast “As the Jungle Turns” on the Internet stream of your live broadcast only. Any other Internet use of “As the Jungle Turns” in whole or part including podcasting of your live broadcast is a violation of copyright law. Thank you for your cooperation on this vitally important issue. If you have any questions, please e-mail us and ask about “Jungle Jam & Friends the Radio Show” usage.


A Christmas Scrooge appears in Cape Town in the form of a women’s protest group.

In Cape Town, the Women’s Media Watch complained to the town council that a local billboard pronouncing “peace on earth and goodwill to all men” was sexist. The billboard was subsequently removed, and replaced with a Christmas tree picture. The group’s program director Lene Overland says, “Either you say goodwill to all, or goodwill to men and women.”



TV Guide listed its choices for the best Christmas episodes of all time. While you can’t argue with picks like “M*A*S*H,” “The Dick Van Dyke Show” and “The Simpsons,” you have to wonder why the authors felt compelled to include an episode from “thirtysomething.” It was probably guilt, which, if we’re not mistaken, was the theme of the entire show.

10. “The Dick Van Dyke Show” – December 18, 1963 – Dick and the gang perform a special holiday show for “The Alan Brady Show.”

9. “M*A*S*H” – December 18, 1978 – Father Mulcahy writes a letter home to his sister.

8. “The Simpsons” – December 17, 1989 – Homer loses what little Christmas money he has at the dog track, but brings home the losing dog: Santa’s Little Helper.

7. “The Wonder Years” – December 14, 1988 – Kevin can’t decide what to get Winnie for Christmas.

6. “All In The Family” – December 22, 1973 – Edith may have breast cancer.

5. “Northern Exposure” – December 16, 1991 – Former astronaut Maurice Minnifield discovers he has a Korean son.

4. “The Twilight Zone” – December 23, 1960 – Art Carney is an unlikely Santa.

3. “The Mary Tyler Moore Show” – December 19, 1970 – Mary has to work on Christmas Eve.

2. “The Honeymooners” – December 24, 1955 – Ralph thinks he has the perfect gift for Alice.

1. “thirtysomething” – December 20, 1988 – Michael Steadman daydreams that he’s Rob in “The Dick Van Dyke Show.”


A man’s car was taken away from him by the police simply because he gave a friend a ride to work! That story and more coming up in the files of Law & Disorder!

FILE #1: Burglar Robert Martin was having a pretty good evening. He had hit a home that was full of highly collectable Hummel figurines and had packed his car with them, about $15,000 worth. And that’s when he should have quit. But instead he broke into another residence. And then our poor burglar’s heart gave out. The homeowner returned home to find our bozo thief dead on the living room floor, apparently of a heart attack.

FILE #2: Nathan Robinson says it was like something out of the “Twilight Zone.”  He’s the music director of a Baptist church in Southern California. Robinson had gone to a La Mesa music store to replace an electric piano and a soundboard that had been stolen from his church. At that very moment, a young man walked in carrying the church’s Yamaha keyboard, hoping to sell it to the store. Store employees stalled, while they called police. When officers arrived, the suspect ran. But police say he left behind the church’s stolen audio equipment and a driver’s license.

FILE #3: A South African man’s car was confiscated AND he was fined about $100 for giving his friends, none of whom owned a car, a lift to work. HUH?!?! Well, apparently it is illegal in South Africa to have a carpool unless all passengers own a car or the other passengers do not pay anything toward the gasoline. Recap… you can’t be in a carpool, unless you own a car – which of course would mean that you wouldn’t need the carpool, right? Or, you can be in a carpool as long as you’re not a nice person by helping the guy out with gas money. That’s illegal too. Okay. And, since this man’s friends helped him pay for the gasoline, he becomes classified as operating a taxi without a license. He’s riding a taxi to work pending his vehicle’s release. And what says the Transport Department deputy director about this? ”That’s the laws of our country. Unfortunately it is like that.”

STRANGE LAW: West Virginia: It is illegal to sneeze on a train.


It was the worst possible place to try to sell some drugs – right in front of the sheriff’s house.

Phil Steen says he was sitting on his front porch enjoying the evening air the other night but some suspicious activity was blocking his view. The sheriff-elect of Lewis County, Idaho, says one of the men told him to mind his own business. But Steen wasn’t intimidated, he ran the suspects’ plates instead. The investigation led to the bust of James MacArthur, who’s now facing a number of charges including possession of marijuana with intent to deliver. Steen adds the investigation continues.


What was the worst or strangest Christmas bonus you ever received from an employer?

What is your favorite Christmas memory?


QUESTION: What did Paul say would increase in the last days: gossip, disobedience to parents, lovers of money, lovers of pleasure or all of the above?

ANSWER: All of the above (Timothy 3:1-4)


QUESTION: From 1941 until 1950, violet was part of the color mix for M&M’s Plain Chocolate Candies. In 1950, it was replaced with what color?



Pay attention! If our next player doesn’t answer all ten T/F questions correctly we start all over from question #1! First person to answer question #10 correctly is our winner!

1. Formally called Kiritimati, Christmas Island in the Indian Ocean is only 10 square miles. (False, it’s 52 square miles.)

2. It is a British Christmas tradition that a wish made while mixing the Christmas pudding will come true only if the ingredients are stirred in a counter-clockwise direction. (False – it must be stirred clockwise.)

3. It is estimated that four million people become sick each year from eating tainted Christmas leftovers. (False, it’s more like 400,000.)

4. More diamonds are purchased at Christmas-time (31 percent) than during any other holiday or occasion during the year. (True)

5. New York City’s Empire State Building’s world famous tower lights are turned off every night at midnight. (False… they exception is New Year’s Eve, New Year’s Day, Christmas Eve, Christmas Day, and St. Patrick’s Day, when they are illuminated until 3 a.m.)

6. Easter Europe was disallowed from celebrating Christmas for several decades up until 1989. (True – on Christmas Day, 1989, Eastern Europe was permitted to celebrate Christmas freely and openly for the first time in decades. It was such big news that church masses were broadcast live for the first time in history.)

7. St. Nicholas was bishop of the Turkish town of Myra in the early fourth century. (True. It was the Dutch who first made him into a Christmas gift-giver, and Dutch settlers brought him to America where his name eventually became the familiar Santa Claus.)

8. The Canadian province of Nova Scotia leads the world in exporting lobster, wild blueberries, and Christmas trees. (True)

9. There were three ghosts in Charles Dickens’s “A Christmas Carol”. (False – there were FOUR. The ghosts of Christmas Past, Christmas Present, Christmas Yet to Come, and the ghost of Jacob Marley.)

10. The movie “How the Grinch Stole Christmas” (2000) features more than 52,000 Christmas lights, about 8,200 Christmas ornaments, and nearly 2,000 candy canes. (True)


You have to match the blank in the tabloid headline with the word or phrase that has been removed!




It was the day after Christmas at a church in San Francisco. The pastor of the church was looking over the cradle when he noticed that the baby Jesus was missing from among the figures. Immediately he turned and went outside and saw a little boy with a red wagon, and in the wagon was the figure of the little infant, Jesus.

So he walked up to the boy and said, “Well, where did you get Him, my fine friend?”

The little boy replied, “I got him from the church.”

“And why did you take him?”

The boy said, “Well, about a week before Christmas I prayed to the little Lord Jesus and I told him if he would bring me a red wagon for Christmas I would give him a ride around the block in it.”


During a field exercise at Camp Lejeune, N.C., my squad was on a night patrol through some thick brush. Halfway through, we realized we’d lost our map.

The patrol navigator informed us, “Our odds are 1 in 360 that we’ll get out of here.”

“How did you come up with that?” someone asked.

“Well,” he replied, “one of the degrees on the compass has to be right.


The Easterner had always dreamed of owning his own cattle ranch, and finally made enough money to buy himself the spread of his dreams in Wyoming.

“So, what did you name the ranch?” asked his best friend when he flew out to visit.

“We had a heck of a time,” admitted the new cowboy. “Couldn’t agree on anything. We finally settled on the Double R Lazy L Triple Horseshoe Bar-7 Lucky Diamond Ranch.”

“Wow!” his friend was impressed. “That’s a really long name! By the way, I don’t see any cattle on your ranch… where are they?”

The rancher looked down at the ground, “None of ’em survived the branding.”


The average American child eats 1,500 peanut butter sandwiches by the end of high school.  ***Which explains why teenagers mumble all the time.

During the sweltering summer in Tokyo, Japan’s Ice Cream Association was trying to get publicity by introducing a number of non-traditional flavors. They included soybean, kelp, strawberry and spinach, garlic, potato and lettuce, cactus, seaweed, and perhaps oddest of all, horse meat-flavored ice cream.  ***That Atkins diet has just destroyed all joy in life, hasn’t it?



I know that Christmas can be tough… especially on those that are single. But if you think about it, if the only person you’re hanging out with this Christmas is your Christmas tree, you may be one of the fortunate ones!

  • Your Christmas Tree never complains when you want to change its appearance.
  • You never have to sit there and wait 20-minutes while you Christmas Tree finishes getting ready for the big company Christmas Party!
  • You can choose a Christmas Tree on outward looks alone and still be politically correct.
  • Your Christmas Tree won’t complain that all you do on Christmas is lie-around all day watching football.
  • If you get tired of your Christmas Tree (the only guest you have for the holidays), all you have to do is drag it out in to the woods, or toss it on the curb to have it hauled away.
  • Your Christmas Tree never orders the lobster bisk and Champaign. All it wants is water!
  • A Christmas Tree won’t return any gift that you give.
  • It doesn’t matter what a Christmas Tree wears, they always look fat in it, so who cares?



A girl is kicked out of school for drinking grape juice!

The scene is Five Forks Middle School in Georgia. Amanda Williams has been suspended from school for NINE days for violating the schools zero-tolerance policy on drinking alcohol. “Good,” you might think. “The last thing we need is school is alcohol… she deserves to be suspended, and more!” Well… let’s get a little more information on this alleged infringement of school policy. Did Amanda sneak a shooter into school in her Britney Spears lunchbox? Did she pilfer a beer from her parents’ house and share it with her friends during lunch? Was she chugging Nyquil? Nope. Get this… Amanda was drinking grape juice. That’s right… grape juice. And she got it from the school cafeteria! Yet she was suspended for breaking the school’s no-tolerance policy on alcohol! Oh, so the grape juice must have been fermented, right? Wrong. So, how could Amanda be suspended for violating the school’s zero tolerance policy on alcohol? I hope you’re sitting down. Amanda was suspended because she joked with her friends that she was drinking wine. That’s it. We all know how young girls like to act grownup – so Amanda is trying to act grown up by joking that she’s drinking wine. Suspended — nine days. Mandatory. No exceptions. The school also has a zero-tolerance policy on smoking. What if some kid puts a pencil in his mouth and pretends to be taking a drag on a cigarette? Suspended? Apparently, yes… so don’t try it.  Mandatory, you know. No exceptions. George Orwell would call these “Thought Crimes.”


‘Twas the night before Jesus came and all through the house,

Not a creature was praying, not one in the house.

Their Bibles were laid on the shelf without care,

In hopes that Jesus would not come there.

The children were dressing to crawl into bed,

Not once ever kneeling or bowing a head.

And Mom in her rocker with baby on her lap,

Was watching the Late Show while I took a nap.

When out of the East there arose such a clatter,

I sprang to my feet to see what was the matter.

Away to the window I flew like a flash,

Tore open the shutters and threw up the sash!

When what to my wondering eyes should appear?

But angels proclaiming that Jesus was here!

With a light like the sun sending forth a bright ray,

I knew in a moment this must be THE DAY!

The light of His face made me cover my head,

It was Jesus returning just like He had said.

And though I possessed worldly wisdom and wealth,

I cried when I saw Him, in spite of myself.

In the Book of Life which He held in His hand

Was written the name of every saved man.

He spoke not a word as He searched for my name;

When He said, “it’s not there,” my head hung in shame.

The people whose names had been written with love,

He gathered to take to his Father above.

With those who were ready He rose without a sound,

While all the rest were left standing around.

I fell to my knees, but it was too late;

I had waited too long and thus sealed my fate.

I stood and I cried as they rose out of sight;

Oh, if only I had been ready tonight.

In the words of this poem the meaning is clear:

The coming of Jesus is drawing near.

There’s only one life and when comes the last call,

We’ll find that the Bible was true after all!



When you get some time off from school, do you turn your break into a “Christ vacation”? Here’s what I mean. We all know what can go on during vacation breaks from school. Those southern trips away from college to the sunny climes of some beachfront hotel may not exactly be events you want your parents to attend. The group dynamics can turn ugly if the people you are hanging with don’t share your faith in Christ.

Christmas vacation getaways are often one big, raucous, God’s-not-invited party. And when a person of faith goes on one of those away-from-school functions, it could very easily become a “Christ vacation”—a time when you take a vacation from Jesus.

No one would suggest that a dedicated Christian like you would purposely abandon what you believe and head out on a sin-filled week of debauchery. But sometimes what starts out as some fun in the sun becomes instead a time for shunning the Son. In other words, it’s easy to get caught up in the unsavory elements of these congregations of college students.

Before you pack the suntan lotion and the Oakleys, it might be wise to set up some unbreakable guidelines for yourself—based on the unchangeable principles of Scripture. Here are some examples:

Avoid sexual sin: Read Colossians 3:5. Purity is an important part of the Christian life, and any immoral sexual behavior is wrong.

Practice modesty: Read 1 Timothy 2:9. Modesty is vital, just like the caution not to dress extravagantly. Guys, this applies to you too.

Keep under the control of the Spirit; not spirits: Read Ephesians 5:18. Be controlled by God’s Spirit, not by alcohol.

Keep your heart soft toward God: Read Ephesians 4:17-19. A hardened heart can lead to sensuality.

The next time you and a tropical beach get together, take those passages of Scripture along with you. Let them remind you not to allow the lure of wild parties and unfettered freedom to cause you to leave your Savior behind. He’s going to be there anyway through the Holy Spirit. You may as well let Him keep you from having a vacation that you can’t forget—no matter how hard you try. —DB



Not using your car in Seattle could not only save you some money, but also make you some money.

Seattle has begun a unique experiment where it’s paying some families to not use their second car. The two-dozen families participating in the research will receive 85-dollars a week during the six-week project. In return they are just asking the participants to keep a journal of how they got around without the use of their car. The information will be used in an education campaign to limit driving.  ***MARLAR: They’ve already figured out how to keep us from driving – gas prices.



Emilie Barnes, author of  “Keep It Simple,” has some holiday ideas you might want to try:

  • Let your family pick one or two Christmas events they want to do, instead of something every week.
  • Combine your tree decorating, with a small potluck Christmas party.  The guests can help decorate the tree and you’ve combined two holiday functions.
  • Draw names for gift giving instead of trying to buy everyone a gift.
  • Give gift cards; put them in a miniature stocking as a fun way to present the gift.

Now instead of planning another day of shopping, cleaning or cooking, make a cup of tea and put your feet up.  Relax, and enjoy the season of our Savior’s birth.



Effective immediately, the following economy measures are to take place in the “Twelve Days of Christmas” subsidiary:

  • The partridge will be retained, but the pear tree never turned out to be the cash crop forecasted. It will be replaced by a plastic hanging plant, providing considerable savings in maintenance;
  • The two turtle doves represent a redundancy that is simply not cost effective. In addition, their romance during working hours could not be condoned. The positions are therefore eliminated;
  • The three French hens will remain intact. After all, everyone loves the French;
  • The four calling birds were replaced by an automated voice mail system, with a call waiting option. An analysis is underway to determine who the birds have been calling, how often and how long they talked;
  • The five golden rings have been put on hold by the Board of Directors. Maintaining a portfolio based on one commodity could have negative implications for institutional investors. Diversification into other precious metals as well as a mix of T-bills and high technology stocks appear to be in order;
  • The six geese-a-laying constitutes a luxury which can no longer be afforded. It has long been felt that the production rate of one egg per goose per day is an example of the decline in productivity. Three geese will be let go, and an upgrading in the selection procedure by personnel will assure management that from now on every goose it gets will be a good one;
  • The seven swans-a-swimming is obviously a number chosen in better times. The function is primarily decorative. Mechanical swans are on order. The current swans will be retrained to learn some new strokes and therefore enhance their outplacement;
  • As you know, the eight maids-a-milking concept has been under heavy scrutiny by the EEOC. A male/female balance in the workforce is being sought. The more militant maids consider this a dead-end job with no upward mobility. Automation of the process may permit the maids to try a-mending, a-mentoring or a-mulching;
  • Nine ladies dancing has always been an odd number. This function will be phased out as these individuals grow older and can no longer do the steps;
  • Ten Lords-a-leaping is overkill. The high cost of Lords plus the expense of international air travel prompted the Compensation Committee to suggest replacing this group with ten out-of-work congressmen. While leaping ability may be somewhat sacrificed, the savings are significant because we expect an oversupply of unemployed congressmen this year;
  • Eleven pipers piping and twelve drummers drumming is a simple case of the band getting too big. A substitution with a string quartet, a cutback on new music and no uniforms will produce savings which will drop right down to the bottom line;

We can expect a substantial reduction in assorted people, fowl, animals, and other expenses. Though incomplete, studies indicate that stretching deliveries over twelve days is inefficient. If we can drop ship in one day, service levels will be improved. Regarding the lawsuit filed by the attorney’s association seeking expansion to include the legal profession, the action is pending. If successful, the action would add one more set of gifts the song… “thirteen lawyers-a-suing.”



  • Bells on clothing draw jeers at truck stops
  • Incredible markup at North Pole 7-Eleven
  • Workman’s comp doesn’t cover “mistletoe lung”
  • Santa only invites favorites to join him in the Jacuzzi
  • The Colonel practically runs my life (Oops, sorry… that’s not an elf complaint, that’s an “Elvis” complaint)



Want to stop unauthorized people from parking in handicapped spaces? Embarrass them! In one English town, people who park without a permit in handicapped parking spaces will be asked to move their cars or face the consequences of getting a ticket. But it won’t be a person telling them to do it… it will be the parking meter! It’s a special parking meter that senses when a car has arrived in the space. Once you’ve parked in the handicapped space and open your door, you’ll hear: “Welcome to Stockport Town Hall. Please note that you are parked in a disabled parking space and must be able to display a relevant badge. If you do not display a relevant badge, you will receive a parking ticket. These conditions apply 24 hours a day, seven days a week.” The idea is to make the person parking there feel really uncomfortable if they’re not handicapped. ***MARLAR: We need one of these things at the grocery store in the “Ten Items or Less” line!


Are you a fan of the adult coloring book trend? You are in good company. Prince William recently revealed that his wife, Princess Kate is a big fan of coloring. He made the comments while awarding one of Queen Elizabeth’s honors to illustrator Johanna Basford at Buckingham Palace. The coloring pastime has been known to relax and calm, quietly replacing the stress of digital screens that takes up so much of peoples’ lives.

What’s the best way to avoid the flu?  Glad you asked! We have all been told again and again that hand-washing is the top way to prevent the spread of germs. But while most people lather up their palms, turns out fingertips are the real scare zone. “they are most likely to come in contact with potentially contaminated surfaces and your face,” Says Neil Schachter, M.D., medical director of the respiratory care from wrist to tips on the front and back of your hands for at least 20 seconds, being careful to scrub between fingers and beneath nails. (Women’s Health)

Trying to watch you figure?  A study shows that if you eat slowly, you will eat less — and you will enjoy the meal more. Women consumed about 70 fewer calories when they were told to take their time eating a meal of pasta and sauce, compared to when they were instructed to eat it as quickly as possible. They also rated the meal as more pleasant when they ate slowly.

Whether you’re trying to write the great American novel or just a cleverly-worded e-mail to your boss, inspiration can fail. If you need a boost of creativity, take a walk. Or ride a bike. Or hit the gym. Exercise can help alleviate writer’s block and improve creativity, the London Telegraph reports of research from Leiden University in The Netherlands. Led by cognitive psychologist Lorenza Colzato, the team found that people who exercised at least four times a week were able to think more creatively than those who led a sedentary lifestyle. It seems that those who exercised regularly notably outperformed the couch potatoes on both tests. “We think that physical exercise trains your brain to become more flexible in finding creative solutions,” Colzato told The Telegraph.

Using your cash for life experiences, such as dinner with friends or a trip, is better than buying that pair of shoes you really don’t need. People who spent their money on experiences were more satisfied and happier in the long run, no matter how much they spent, says a San Francisco State University study. “We never get bored with memories like we do with material items,” says study author Ryan Howell, Ph.D. Of course, most experiences happen with friends or family, which helps you feel connected and engaged all keys to long term happiness.


Did you ever wonder how many gangsta rap guys do Christmas albums? Me neither.


Marie Asner has been reviewing films for over 30 years. Her outlets include radio, print and Internet. For more in-depth movie reviews of the following films, visit Ratings from 1 (Low) to 5 (High).

DECEMBER 16, 2016 thru JANUARY 01, 2017…

 Why Him?—James Franco takes on the role of the son-in-law from Hades. Who would want him?  The daughter of Bryan Cranston, that’s who. The daughter is played by Zoey Deutch. Franco has lots of money, but acts and dresses like a scarecrow. “Why Him?” is rated R. No rating.


A Monster Calls—(now opening from an earlier date) A young boy (Lewis MacDougall) finds that his mother is quite ill.  He doesn’t know how to cope and it doesn’t help that his grandmother (Sigourney Weaver) is not a sympathetic person. What to do? Here comes a “monster” in the shape of a large tree (voice of Liam Neeson) to help the boy. “A Monster Calls” is rated PG. Rating of 3 and bring hanky. 


Manchester By The Sea—A story of grief, several times over, loss and trying to cope are all in this film that suits actor Casey Affleck fine. He plays Lee, who suddenly finds himself guardian to a teenage nephew when Lee’s brother (Kyle Chandler) and the boy’s father dies. What to do? Face up to life or keep trudging along. “Manchester By The Sea” is rated R. Rating of 3. Bring hanky.


Neruda—Luis Gnecco stars as the famed Spanish poet who finds his past membership in the early Communist party comes back to haunt him.  Also in the cast are Gael Garcia Bernal, Alfredo Castro and Mercedes Morau. “Neruda” is rated R. Subtitles. No rating.


Passengers—A science fiction film of trying to help humanity…in a big way. Jennifer Lawrence and Chris Pratt star as two people, among many, who are traveling in deep sleep to another planet.  When something awakens the two, they realize something is very wrong and they have to help…and fight. “Passengers” is rated R. Rating of 2 for fans.


Sing—This animated film concerns a singing contest…with animals.  Yes, there is a mother pig (voice of Reese Witherspoon), the theater owner, a koala bear (voice of Matthew McConaughey) and a rockin’ porcupine (Scarlett Johansson). You can imagine what happens during the contest. Also lending their voices are Seth MacFarlane, Tori Kelly, Taron Egerton and Nick Kroll.  “Sing” is rated PG. Rating of 3 for fans.


(Opening moved ahead from an earlier date) The Space Between Us—On a colonization voyage to Mars, it is discovered that one of the female astronauts is pregnant.  This results in the first child, a boy, being born on Mars, but in that atmosphere, gravity, etc. Fast forward to teen years, and the kid (Asa Butterfield) knows about Earth and even has a girl friend, Britt Robertson (Skype) he communes with.  However, something happens and Asa ends up on Earth. “The Space Between Us” is rated PG 13. Rating of 2 for fans.


Gold—Try, just try to recognize Matthew McConaughey in the role of Kenny Wells who goes to Borneo to find gold. You read that right.  His girlfriend, Bryce Dallas Howard, faithfully follows him.  People will do just about anything to get rich in a hurry.  Also in the cast are Edgar Ramirez and Corey Stoll. “Gold” is rated R. Rating of 2 for fans.


Hidden Figures—This is an unusual title for a film and another might have better explained the film’s content.  It is about three black women who are top mathematicians and work to put the first space flights and astronauts into earth orbit and beyond. Prejudice is prevalent here. Stars include Taraji P. Henson, Octavia Spencer and Janelle Monae. “Hidden Figures” is rated PG 13. Rating of 3.


Paterson—Adam Driver (“Star Wars”) is a bus driver whose name is Paterson and he lives in Paterson, N. J. The film concerns a week in his life and how he and his wife (Golshiften Farahani) handle problems. “Paterson” is rated R. No rating.


Jackie—Now opening from an earlier date, Natalie Portman stars as Jackie Kennedy in the few days before the funeral of President Kennedy. Portman takes the role and goes with it to bring you into that era of assassination of a  president and the aftermath in the country and his family. Also in the cast are Peter Sarsgaard and Billy Crudup. “Jackie” is rated R. Rating of 3 for fans. Bring hanky.


Live By Night—Ben Affleck stars and directs this movie about gangsters and their rise to the top in Boston.  Based on a Dennis Lehane novel and set in the 1920’s. There is back-stabbing, love and the rest of crimes included. Also starring in the film are Sienna Miller, Elle Fanning and Zoe Saldana. “Live By Night” is rated R. Rating of 2 for fans.

20th Century Women—Annette Bening shines in this film of three generations of women in the mid-1970’s and how they cope with changing times. The cast includes Elle Fanning (great work), and Greta Gerwig. Wonderful soundtrack, too.  “20th Century Women” is rated R for sexual content. Rating of 2.


A Kind Of Murder—Here is another adaptation of a Patricia Highsmith novel. The film stars Patrick Wilson and Jessica Biel who are not happy in their marriage. Along comes Eddie Marsan, whose wife has passed away and they become friends.  However, suspicion lurks here.  “A Kind Of Murder” is rated R. No rating.


Julieta—This is a Spanish language film directed by Pedro Almodovar. It concerns a mother’s (Emma Svarez)  search for a missing daughter. Also in the cast are Daniel Grao and Adriana Ugarte. “Julieta” is rated R. No rating.


Collateral Beauty—Will Smith plays a man who has suffered a tragedy in his life. His friends worry about him and decide to help, though in unconventional ways. Also in the cast are Helen Mirren and Edward Norton. “Collateral Beauty” is rated PG 13. Rating of 2 for fans.


Fences—The stars of this film, Denzel Washington and Viola Davis, already have Tony’s for their roles in the Broadway version.  Now, Washington stars and directs this film that is set in the middle 1960’s and tells how working class African-Americans cope with problems. August Wilson wrote the play. “Fences” is rated R. Rating of 3 for fans.


The Founder—Ray Kroc made McDonalds a global name with unique marketing. However, the real founders were the McDonald brothers (played by Nick Offerman and John Carroll).  Kroc is played by Michael Keaton. This is a study in how to build a business, ruthless though it may be. “The Founder” is rated R. Rating of 2 for fans.


Rogue One: A Star Wars Story—Felicity Jones is the female lead in this “stand alone” story in the “Star Wars” saga. The story is about when the Death Star was being built and the Rebels were trying to get the plans. Also in the cast are Ben Mendelssohn and Riz Ahmed. Get your light sabers ready. “Rogue One: A Star Wars Story” is rated PG 13. Rating of 3 for fans.


Assassins Creed—This film is yet another adaptation of a game board.  Here, Michael Fassbinder takes on the role of a man in the 15th century Aguilar) and at the same time, in this century (Callum). Those fighting outfits are reminiscent of “The Arrow.” Also in the cast are Marion Cotilliard and Jeremy Irons. “Assassins Creed” is rated R. Rating of 2 for fans.


Note: ”Patriots’s Day” and “Silence” are now set to open the middle of January, 2017.


Happy New Year 2017. – Marie Asner

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