December 25, 2015: Friday ONAIRprep (Christmas Day)


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Here it is Christmas Day and the lights still aren’t working right on the tree. Honest. Last year I didn’t find the burned out light bulb until Easter.


“Mannheim Steamroller Christmas songs have a mixed effect on me. Some get me in the mood for Christmas, others get me in the mood to fight the Russian from Rocky IV.” — Jonny Diaz




“For God loved the world so much that He gave His only Son, so that anyone who believes in Him shall not perish but have eternal life. God did not send his Son into the world to condemn it, but to save it.” –John 3:16-17


But the angel said to them, “Do not be afraid. I bring you good news of great joy that will be for all the people.” — Luke 2:10





God sent the angel Gabriel to Nazareth, a town in Galilee, to a virgin pledged to be married to a man named Joseph, a descendant of David. The virgin’s name was Mary. The angel went to her and said, “Greetings, you who are highly favored! The Lord is with you.” — Luke 1:26-28


Thought: Wow! Such a familiar sentence packed with emotion. An angel comes to Nazareth to visit and speak with a young woman engaged to be married. Before the history shattering news is announced, she is given one key reminder that will be truer than she could imagine, “The Lord is with you.”


Prayer: My request, O God, I’ve sung many times: “Be with me Lord, I cannot live without Thee. I cannot bear, to take one step alone.” Father, I need your abiding presence to face the challenges of life. As you have upheld your children through the ages, I am thankful to greet each day knowing that I will not face it alone. In Jesus’ name. Amen.


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




The chapter and verse corresponds to the month and the day!

Proverbs 12:25 NIV = An anxious heart weighs a man down, but a kind word cheers him up.




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


Today is CHRISTMAS DAY. Commemorating the birth of Jesus – God in human form. Christmas is celebrated in at least 105 countries.


Today is A’PHABET DAY. ***MARLAR: Also known as “NO ‘L’ DAY”. Get it? NOEL?!?! Lame, I know.


Today GRAVITY DAY (always on the birthday of Sir Isaac Newton who was born in 1642). ***MARLAR: They say Sir Isaac Newton discovered gravity… if that’s true, how did we stay on the ground before he discovered it?


It’s NATIONAL PUMPKIN PIE DAY. ***MARLAR: Whether it’s fresh from the oven or leftover from Thanksgiving, it’s still worth digging into!


Today is PLAY IT AGAIN SAM DAY – celebrated on the birthday of Humphrey Bogart, who is said to have uttered these words in the classic movie Casablanca (which he never did say). ***MARLAR: So today is the day to go out and do something again that you’ve done before and enjoyed. Like eating pumpkin pie!




Christmas Pudding Day





Boxing Day

National Candy Cane Day

National Thank-You Note Day

National Whiner’s Day



Howdy Doody Day

Visit The Zoo Day



Holy Innocents Day

Endangered Species Act Day

National Chocolate Day

Pledge Of Allegiance Day



Tick Tock Day




Bacon Day

Falling Needles Day



First Nights

Leap Second Time Adjustment Day

Look On The Bride Side Day

Make Up Your Mind Day

New Year’s Eve

New Year’s Dishonor List

No Interruptions Day

Universal Hour of Peace Day

World Peace Meditation Day



Copyright Law Day

Commitment Day

Ellis Island Day

Euro Day

First Foot Day

Global Family Day

Mummer’s Parade

New Year’s Day

New Year’s Dishonor List Day

Polar Bear Plunge

Rose Bowl Game

Tournament of Roses Parade Day

World Peace Day

Z Day



55-MPH Speed Limit Day

Fruitcake Toss Day

Happy Mew Year For Cats Day

National Buffet Day

National Motivation and Inspiration Day

National Personal Trainer Awareness Day

National Science Fiction Day

Pet Travel and Safety Day



Drinking Straw Day

J.R.R. Tolkien Day

“Remember You Die” Day

National Chocolate Covered Cherry Day



Blue Monday (the most depression day of the year)

Dimpled Chad Day

Divorce Monday

National Weigh-In Day

Pop Music Chart Day

“Thank God It’s Monday” Day

Tom Thumb Day

Trivia Day

World Braille Day

World Hypnotism Day




336: This is the earliest known year that Jesus’ nativity was celebrated on December 25th, as mentioned in the Philocalian Calendar of A.D. 354. Jesus’ birth was commemorated on January 6th in Greek Orthodoxy, although by the 400s most of the Eastern churches had accepted the Roman date. (Almanac of the Christian Church, William D. Blake, Bethany House, Minneapolis, 1987)


1223: St. Francis of Assisi assembled one of the first Nativity scenes, in Greccio, Italy.


1621: Governor Bradford of Plymouth Colony ordered all “articles of play” confiscated, ruling that playing games on Christmas Day was not appropriate. ***MARLAR: Blast that Burgermeister Meisterburger!


1938: After auditioning hundreds for the role, producer David O. Selznick chose British actress Vivien Leigh to play Scarlett O’Hara in “Gone With The Wind.”


1961: Using a centrifuge made from a gramophone motor, Czech Professor Otto Wichterle spun history’s first soft contact lens in Prague. He was removed as head of the Czech Chemistry Institute after organizing anti-communists protests in 1968, and never became wealthy from his invention. He died in 1998 at age 84.


1976: Larry Gatlin & The Gatlin Brothers became members of the Grand Ole Opry.


1989: For the first time in history, Christmas masses were broadcast live in Eastern Europe.


1995: Attorney Andre-Francois Raffray died at age 77 in Arles, France. At age 47, Raffray had agreed to pay 90-year-old Jeanne Calment’s rent of $500 a month until she died on the condition that he would inherit her home. The 120-year-old Calment celebrated Christmas with dinner at an Arles hotel. She died in 1997.


2002: Katie Hnida became the first woman to play in a Division I college football game when she attempted an extra point following a New Mexico touchdown in the Las Vegas Bowl. Hnida’s kick was blocked but she had already made history in the 27-13 loss to UCLA.




496: King Clovis, who united Gaul and founded France, is baptized in the Cathedral of Rheims, followed by 3,000 of his soldiers. “Worship what you once burned, and burn what you worshipped,” the priest instructed him. However, Clovis and his troops showed little change after their “conversion” and apparently believed Christ was merely a war god who would grant them victory if they prayed for it.


525: Easter tables by Dioysius Exiguus wrongly give December 25th as the date of Christ’s birth.


800: Pope Leo III is crowns Charlemagne, the first ruler of the Holy Roman Empire.


1814: First Protestant sermon on New Zealand soil preached by Rev. Samuel Marsden, colonial chaplain of New South Wales. Spearhead of the CMS mission to the Maoris, who were baptized in droves in the 1830’s.


1865: Evangeline Booth is born, the last of the Booth children.


1931: Missionary radio station HCJB, run by World Radio Missionary Fellowship, Inc., begins broadcasting the Gospel from Quito, Ecuador, to eastern Asia.




  • actress (“Brooklyn South”, “Millennium”, “Intelligence”) Klea Scott 47
  • political advisor Karl “The Architect” Rove 65
  • actress (Cole Miner’s Daughter, JFK, Tuck Everlasting, Four Christmases) Sissy Spacek 66
  • actor (Travis on “WKRP in Cincinnati”) Gary Sandy 70 (




(Music Artist Birthdays From

1907 : Cab Calloway

1912 : Tony Martin

1915 : Pete Rugolo

1929 : Billy Horton (The Silhouettes)

1929 : Chris Kenner

1934 : McKinley Mitchell

1937 : O’Kelly Isley (The Isley Nrothers)

1943 : Trevor Lucas (Fairport Convention)

1944 : Henry Vestine (Canned Heat)

1944 : John Edwards (The Spinners)

1945 : Noel Redding (The Jimi Hendrix Experience)

1945 : Steve Mancha (100 Proof Aged in Soul)

1946 : Jimmy Buffett

1948 : Barbara Mandrell

1954 : Robin Campbell (UB40)

1954 : Annie Lennox

1957 : Shane McGowan (The Pogues)

1971 : Noel Hogan (The Cranberries)

1972 : Dido




How did the word “Yuletide” originate?
The word “Yuletide” originated from the word “Yule”, which was recorded In Latin writings as early as A.D. 726. At that time, the form of the word was “guili”. Both terms refer to a 12-day pagan feast celebrated around the time of year that has come to be known as the Christmas season.




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Need a little help with the Christmas atmosphere at your holiday gatherings. Don’t forget Paul Baloche’s fireplace video. The video features a flickering fire with Paul’s new Christmas CD Christmas Worship, Volume 2 playing in the background. The video gives nearly one hour of Christmas praise and worship music.


Just in time for the holiday, Tenth Avenue North has re-released 4 minutes and 37 seconds of Christmas joy. Check out their version of Deck the Halls recorded several years ago.


Matt Maher was recently having some fun. He released his best Elvis Presley Impression of Blue Christmas and even gives you a taste of how it compares to Elvis himself.


Matt Maher was recently having some fun. He released his best Elvis Presley Impression of Blue Christmas and even gives you a taste of how it compares to Elvis himself.


A little de ju vu for Aaron Shust over the weekend. He spent Sunday afternoon chilling in the house where he and his wife Sarah brought home their two oldest boys and spent six years of their life. Aaron says he still owns the house and it works out great when you happen to love your tenants.


Flu going around your house? Then you might be able to relate to the Christmas wish of Mercyme guitarist Mike Scheuchzer. He tweeted his picture looking totally worn out along with the words: It’d be awesome if no one else would throw up tonight. Mike said two of their four kids had been up, keeping he and his wife up half of the night.


Tenth Avenue North’s Ruben Juarez shared this week on twitter: What I’ve learned in 2015: the key to success is to eat breakfast, water your plants, and ride jet skis all day.




X-ray vision? New technology making it a reality for $300    photo
CAMBRIDGE, Mass. (AP) — X-ray vision, a comic book fantasy for decades, is becoming a reality in a lab at MIT. A group of researchers led by Massachusetts Institute of Technology professor Dina Katabi has developed software that uses variations in radio signals to recognize human silhouettes…


Venomous sea snake washes onto Southern California shore    photo
HUNTINGTON BEACH, Calif. (AP) — A dead yellow-bellied sea snake from southern Mexico has been discovered on Bolsa Chica beach, only the third one ever reported in California. Natural History Museum snake curator Greg Pauly says it’s only the seventh or eighth one ever seen north of Baja…
School makes teacher remove pink Hello Kitty Christmas tree
BANGOR, Maine (AP) — A Maine high school teacher is complaining that she was forced to remove a small pink Christmas tree festooned with the character Hello Kitty from her classroom. Catherine Gordon is a math teacher at Bangor High School. She wrote on her Facebook page that “everything…
‘Star Wars’ fan in NY legally changes name to Darth Vader
CANANDAIGUA, N.Y. (AP) — Darth Vader is a tattooed 43-year-old former Marine who owns a gym and is raising funds online for a bone marrow transplant. HASH(0x13e0be0) The former Eric Welch, of Canandaigua (kan-un-DAY’-gwuh), says he grew up in foster homes and didn’t have strong family ties to…
No dog-eat-dog politics: Siberian city backs cat for mayor    photo
BARNAUL, Russia (AP) — Tired of the dog-eat-dog politics in their Russian city, the residents of Barnaul say they want a cat to be their next mayor. The Siberian city of 650,000 people, which lies 2,900 kilometers (1,800 miles) east of Moscow, is to get a new mayor next week when a commission…
New 911 dispatcher helps couple deliver baby on Utah highway
SALT LAKE CITY (AP) — A Utah couple welcomed their fourth child into the world on the side of Interstate 15, coached through delivery problems by a 911 operator. HASH(0x141df70) “I mean, we joke, ‘Oh you’re going to get a pregnancy call,'” Kalaher said, “and then it actually happens. You…
Fans of honest Colorado busboy raise over $3,800 for him
GRAND JUNCTION, Colo. (AP) — A struggling Colorado busboy who returned $3,000 in cash that he found on the floor is getting rewarded with a big tip. As of Monday, people impressed with Johnny Duckworth’s honesty have raised more than $3,800 through He found the cash Tuesday at…
Error coin, a dime struck onto a nail, is headed to auction    photo
NEW YORK (AP) — Is it a dime? Or is it a nail? In probably one of the oddest items to come to the world of coin collecting, Dallas-based Heritage Auctions has announced the sale of a Roosevelt dime that was accidentally (or some say deliberately) struck onto a zinc nail. Yes, that piece of…
China names and shames 5 tourists over bad behavior
BEIJING (AP) — China’s tourism authority named and shamed another five tourists for bad behavior and says it is working with airlines on a possible flying ban. Those added to the list of “uncivilized behavior” by tourists include two women and a man who brawled after one woman’s seat was…
Lip balm containing pot ingredient thrown out at air base
ANCHORAGE, Alaska (AP) — Officials say they had to discard hundreds of tubes of lip balm that were distributed at Joint Base Elmendorf-Richards after they were found to contain trace amounts of THC, an active ingredient in marijuana. The base’s Sexual Assault Prevention and Response Office…
California server finds $32,000 at eatery, returns to owner
FRESNO, Calif. (AP) — Police in California say a waiter returned $32,000 in cash after some diners accidentally left it behind. HASH(0x13eb500) When the waiter found the money he told his boss, who called police. The money was ultimately returned to the family. The server was not identified….




Study: Some cardiac arrest victims ignore warning symptoms    photo
WASHINGTON (AP) — Sudden cardiac arrest may not always be so sudden: New research suggests a lot of people may ignore potentially life-saving warning signs hours, days, even a few weeks before they collapse. Cardiac arrest claims about 350,000 U.S. lives a year. It’s not a heart attack, but…


New advice on who qualifies for cholesterol-lowering statins
WASHINGTON (AP) — Considering a cholesterol-lowering statin to prevent a heart attack? Deciding who’s a good candidate requires calculating more than a simple cholesterol level. A government task force says the popular medications will be of most benefit to some people ages 40 to 75 whose…
In budget deal, health law foes took a different path    photo
WASHINGTON (AP) — Republican foes of President Barack Obama’s health care law may be able to get more by chipping away at it than trying to take the whole thing down at once. That’s one lesson of the budget deal passed by Congress and signed by the president last week. It delayed a widely…
FDA eases restrictions on blood donations from gay men    photo
WASHINGTON (AP) — The nation’s three-decade-old ban on blood donations from gay and bisexual men was formally lifted Monday, but major restrictions will continue to limit who can give blood. The Food and Drug Administration said it is replacing the lifetime ban with a new policy barring…
New rules bringing kidneys to hardest-to-transplant patients    photo
WASHINGTON (AP) — A shake-up of the nation’s kidney transplant system means more organs are getting to patients once thought nearly impossible to match, according to early tracking of the new rules. It’s been a year since the United Network for Organ Sharing changed rules for the transplant…
Beijing’s 2nd smog red alert of the month goes into effect    photo
BEIJING (AP) — Beijing was enveloped in eye-watering, throat-irritating smog on Saturday as the second red alert of the month went into effect in the Chinese capital, forcing many cars off the roads and restricting factory production. A wave of smog settled over the notoriously polluted city…
San Francisco hospital suspends kidney donations after death
SAN FRANCISCO (AP) — One of the nation’s most prominent medical centers has voluntarily suspended its living donor program for kidney transplants after a living donor died last month. The donor had provided a kidney to a recipient at University of California San Francisco Medical center in…
Flu season off to slower start this year; might be milder    photo
NEW YORK (AP) — This year’s flu season seems like old times. There’s not much flu going around so far — unlike the last three seasons when doctors’ offices were filled with patients before Christmas and illnesses peaked by late December. “It really is off to sort of a slow start”…
Report: Drug overdose deaths surged in 14 states last year
NEW YORK (AP) — Drug overdose deaths surged in 14 states last year, pushing the nation to a record count, according to a government report released Friday. Rates went up in Alabama, Georgia, Illinois, Indiana, Maine, Maryland, Massachusetts, Michigan, New Hampshire, New Mexico, North Dakota,…
FDA proposes ban on indoor tanning for minors    photo
WASHINGTON (AP) — Anyone under the age of 18 would be barred from using indoor tanning equipment, under a federal proposal to help reduce skin cancer linked to the devices. The Food and Drug Administration also wants to require tanning bed users to sign consent forms acknowledging the risks…
Painkiller politics: Effort to curb prescribing under fire    photo
WASHINGTON (AP) — A bold federal effort to curb prescribing of painkillers may be faltering amid stiff resistance from drugmakers, industry-funded groups and, now, even other public health officials. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention was on track to finalize new prescribing…




(No news on the weekends. Audio clips are only valid for a few days before being removed from our servers.)




















OPEN: And now,, (Show Name), and (Station Call Letters) bring you As the Jungle Turns! Last time, Marvy Snuffelson was on Razzleflabbin Island, and he suggested that Karl get his best friend Olaf some race cars for his toy race track. Now Marvy is with Olaf looking for the perfect gift for Karl – bicycle tires! Unfortunately, tires don’t come cheap – and Olaf has no money.


CLOSE: So now there are racing cars with no track to race them on… and bicycle tires with no bike on which to attach them! What kind of Christmas IS this? Find out next time… As the Jungle Turns!






OPEN: And now,, (Show Name), and (Station Call Letters) bring you As the Jungle Turns! Last time, the jungle animals’ new king, Louis the little lion, decided he didn’t want to play badminton, build forts, or go swimming. And since he’s now the king, he can decide anything he likes… so he’s decided to pounce on dandelions. And since they’re following him, all the other animals are also pouncing…


CLOSE: Now what is Louis going to do? He’s the king – he has to decide something! 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.




Today’s Moment of Duh is caused by a spelling error on the jerseys of a university’s basketball team!

If we had a Moment of Duh award, one would have to go to Western Illinois University back in 2002 because not one basketball team member had noticed, for several games, and after appearing in uniform in their media guide, and then not until someone pointed it out to them, that “Illinois,” emblazoned across their white home team tops, was misspelled “Illinios.”





  1. An autographed photo of Herod!
  2. An AAA travel guide to Egypt!
  3. A copy of “Following Stars For Fun And Prophet”!
  4. The home version of “Survivor”!
  5. An “I Be The KING Of Kings” Tee shirt!
  6. Herod’s latest CD: “I Did It MY Way!”
  7. Gold, Frankincense, and Myrrh Chia Pets!
  8. The “Ronco Jr. Miracle-making Workshop”!
  9. A “Set the Prisoners Free” card!
  10. Fruitcake!! (No one liked it–even back then!)




When deciding to steal something from a car, be sure it is not a police cruiser – and be sure the officer isn’t standing nearby watching you.


FILE #1: Ron Powell spotted a pack of cigarettes, a lighter and a candy bar inside an unlocked car. Unable to resist, he reached in and grabbed the goodies. And to cover his tracks, he then stepped back and wiped down the car with a towel to erase his fingerprints. Unfortunately for him he was so focused on the things he wanted to steal that he failed to notice a couple of other important things about the car. Like the police radio inside and the police light rack on the roof. Yep, he robbed a police car.  In broad daylight.  With the officer standing nearby. Yes, he’s in jail.


FILE #2: A Florence, Oregon, woman was arrested for arson and burglary after, police say, she set fire to a neighbor’s trailer home for allegedly stealing her keys, then later found her keys hanging from her pants pocket.


FILE #3: A thief in Bogota, Colombia, ended up in the hospital after he tried to rob a karate academy. ***MARLAR: Something tells me he didn’t think that one through.


STRANGE LAW: In New York it is against the law to throw a ball at someone’s head for fun.




Advertising your product to the world for them to buy is a good thing – unless you’re selling illegal drugs.

Two students at Boston’s Northeastern University were arrested after one allegedly leaned out their dorm window and shouted, “If you’re looking for weed, my roommate has some for sale!”  ***MARLAR: Well, at least that student will learn ONE lesson this year.




What gift did you receive for Christmas that was a complete surprise to you?




QUESTION: Which Old Testament prophet had predicted that Jesus would be born in
ANSWER: Micah (Micah 5:2 = “But you, Bethlehem Ephrathah, though you are little among the thousands of Judah, yet out of you shall come forth to Me the One to be Ruler in Israel, whose goings forth are from of old from everlasting.”




QUESTION: Where did the word “Christmas” originate?
ANSWER: The Nativity of Christ was introduced as a special feast in Rome about the middle of the 4th century. The word “Christmas” can be traced back to 1038 to the “Mass of Christ,” in old English pronounced “Cristes Maesse.”




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. The movie “Holiday Inn” introduced us to the song “Silver Bells.” (False – that was from The Lemon Drop Kid starring Bob Hope. The song was written by the composers of “The Theme from Mr. Ed,” Jay Livingston & Ray Evans)


  1. More than 30-million Americans had presents under their Christmas tree this morning for their dog. (True)


  1. It snowed once in the Sahara Desert. (True – on February 18, 1979. Not surprisingly, the snow quickly melted. This is the only recorded incident of it happening in the Sahara Desert.)


  1. 30% of U.S. families put up an artificial Christmas tree each year. (False – it’s more like 22%.)


  1. In England, Father Christmas has two addresses, Edinburgh and the North Pole. (True. Letters addressed to ‘TOYLAND’ or ‘SNOWLAND’ go to Edinburgh, but letters addressed to ‘THE NORTH POLE’ have to be sent there because there really is such a place!)


  1. Rudolph’s father is Comet. (False – it’s Donner)


  1. An old wives’ tale says that bread baked on Christmas Eve will never go moldy. (True, it’s an old wives’ tale. However, it’s not true that the bread won’t go moldy. It will.)


  1. It’s not until the twelfth night of Christmas that the Three Kings are supposed to be added to the Christmas nativity scene. (True. In Germany, Twelfth Night – the evening of January 5th – is known as ‘Three Kings Day’. More info HERE.)


  1. Mincemeat pie shouldn’t be eaten until after sundown on January 5th. (True. Eating mince pies at Christmas dates back to the 16th century. It is still believed that to eat a mince pie on each of the Twelve Days of Christmas will bring 12 happy months in the year to follow.)


  1. Over the river and through the woods, to grandmother’s arms we go. (False – “to grandmother’s HOUSE we go.”)




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


IRAN –  Iranian officials  confirmed today that they have found Noah’s Ark!

A team of top Iranian archaeologists discovered the prominent ancient boat at just over 13,000 feet on Mount Suleiman in Iran’s Elburz mountain range over the weekend.

“It is absolutely, certainly Noah’s ark,” said Tariz Ibaq, president of the Koran Archaeology Search and Exploration Institute, based in Tehran.  The group went on an expedition five months ago and were pleased to make the dramatic discovery.

Photos taken by KASE members show a prow-shaped outcrop, made of petrified wood, emerging from a ridge in the mountains.

“We have had thin sections of the rock and identified ancient wood cell structures,” Ibaq said.

Iranian leader, Mahmoud Ahmadinejad said this proves that Noah’s ark came to its final resting placein Iran and proves that Iranians are God’s “chosen people.”





A 4-year-old boy who was asked to return thanks before Christmas dinner. The family members bowed their heads in expectation. He began his prayer, thanking God for all his friends, naming them one by one. Then he thanked God for Mommy, Daddy, Brother, Sister, Grandma, Grandpa, and all his aunts and uncles. Then he began to thank God for the food. He gave thanks for the turkey, the dressing, the fruit salad, the cranberry sauce, the pies, the cakes, even the Cool Whip. Then he paused, and everyone waited–and waited. After a long silence, the young fellow looked up at his mother and asked, “If I thank God for the broccoli, won’t he know that I’m lying?”




One weekend Sally, a nurse, was looking after her six-year-old nephew when he fell off a playground slide and hit his head. Worried that he might have a concussion, she checked him all night. Every hour, she’d gently shake him and ask, “What’s your name?”

Soon, he began moaning in protest each time she entered the room. When Sally went in at 5:00 A.M., she found something white on his forehead.

Leaning close, she saw a crayon-scrawled message taped to his forehead. It read: “My name is Daniel.”




“Look at ME!” boasted the fit old man to a group of young people. “Every morning I do fifty push-ups, fifty sit-ups and walk two miles. I’m fit as a fiddle! And you want to know why? I don’t smoke, I don’t drink, I don’t stay up late, and I don’t chase after women!”

He smiled at them, teeth white, eyes glittering, “And tomorrow, I’m going to celebrate my 95th birthday!”

“Oh, really?” drawled one of the young onlookers, “How?”




A medical intern at a hospital in Austria mistakenly injected an elderly patient with olive oil instead of antibiotics after mixing up the vials at her bedside. The olive oil had been placed there by a physiotherapist for a massage. Fortunately, doctors said she would not suffer any serious complications from having olive oil in her veins. ***MARLAR: What about the complications from being massaged with tetracycline?


A Japanese teen was banned from attending a school dance after being busted for excessive cursing at school. But he knew the dance was a big one and he really wanted to go. So he did. He managed to get in by disguising himself as a girl, complete with a black dress, sandals, nail polish, glasses and a wig. His sister and her girlfriends helped with the disguise.  His success was short-lived, however… he was spotted the second he walked in. ***MARLAR: At which point he began cursing excessively.





A little boy, excited about his part in the Christmas play at school, came home and shouted, “I got a part in the Christmas play! I got a part in the Christmas play!”

“What part did you get?” asked his mother excitedly.
“I’m one of the three wise guys!”




Planning to ship something to that special person in the military overseas?  You might want to consider shopping online somewhere other than Wal-Mart.

You might get a very unpleasant surprise when ordering gifts online for that solider serving overseas from Wal-Mart, who currently have the biggest markup on shipping charges for the military. On a $120 purchase, charged $10.35 to ship to an APO address, compared with just $2.10 to a stateside address. However, for most items, charged the same to ship to an APO address as a stateside address and offered free shipping on a $120 purchase to an APO address. Wal-Mart officials would not comment except to say, “We continue to work with carriers to negotiate favorable shipping rates.” But Earl Small, the postmaster at Wiesbaden Army Airfield, said that the shipping and handling charges have nothing to do with the military postal system or the U.S. Postal Service and points out that, “A company can charge whatever they want.” According to Small, when companies ship to APO addresses, the order is shipped to New York, after which the Department of Defense picks up the tab to get the package to an APO address overseas. And in his strongest statement Small said flat out, “There are no higher transportation costs. Companies are abusing the system and making a killing.”  ***MARLAR: Thanks for your patriotism, Wal-Mart.




What do you really want for the holidays? USA Today printed these letters from children written to Santa Claus and directed to the US Post Office:

Dear Santa: The only wish I want is to have a nice Christmas for my little brothers. We don’t have the money to put nothing under the tree because of welfare. Please help. There are five kids and it’s hard for Mom. – Lisa

Dear Santa: I want to help the kids that don’t get anything for Christmas. It is real important to me. I don’t want just to help in the United States but all over the world. – Austin

Dear Santa: We will give you lots of goodies. One present is to find my dog Boom Boom. – Joni

Dear Santa: This Christmas I would like four things. Understanding for the children. Respect for the parents. Love for the elders and peace for everyone. – Rebecca
What these children really want runs deeper than the latest toy fad or a new outfit. I believe they want what we all want, when we get down to it.  It may make you think of a story that comes out of World War I. It was December 25, 1917. Only a short distance of mud separated two enemy trenches – German and American. They had been shooting at each other for days, but today their thoughts turned to hearth and home. Suddenly, a German soldier laid down his rifle, pulled a block of chocolate from his pocket, and tossed it into the American trench. In response an American tossed over a can of milk. Soon gifts were being passed back and forth, and the men were both laughing and weeping.

Peace was what they really wanted at that sacred time of the year. They wanted the war to be over and to be home. They wanted to quit the fighting and violence and live in harmony. What they really wanted was what we all want.  Never stop believing that it can be so.




We pray that this season and through the coming year you will experience all the blessings the Lord Jesus Christ came to give us.  “For you know the grace of our Lord Jesus Christ, that though He was rich, yet for your sakes He became poor, that you through His poverty might be rich.” –2 Corinthians 9:8

While He lived in heaven the Lord Jesus Christ was rich. He had everything that belonged to Him as God the Son. He reigned in majesty supreme in heaven. He was the owner of all things. He was full of joy and perfectly satisfied.
When He became a man he laid aside all His wealth. He spent His first night in a smelly place with the cattle. He grew up in a carpenter’s home. When He became an adult He said, “The foxes have holes and the birds have their nests but the Son of man has no place to lay His head.” When He paid the temple tax He sent Peter to catch a fish which had a coin in his mouth worth enough to pay it. When died He had no earthly possessions but the clothes He wore. The ultimate poverty was His death between two criminals.
He became poor and despised that He might forgive our sins and share with us His own wealth of spirit and His position of favor and power at the Father’s right hand. So we are rich. God has given us everything we need to share His abundant life here and to prepare for life in heaven for all eternity.
“Thanks be to God for His unspeakable gift” (2 Corinthians 9:15).
Keep your heart in tune with God this Christmas… and enjoy all His gifts.







What’s all this hectic rush and worry?
Where go these crowds who run and scurry?
Why all the lights – the Christmas trees?
The jolly “fat man,” tell me please!

Why, don’t you know?  This is the day
For parties and for fun and play;
Why this is Christmas!


So this is Christmas, did you say?
But where is Christ this Christmas Day?
Has He been lost among the throng?
His voice drowned out by empty song?

No, He’s not here – you’ll find Him where
Some humble soul now kneels in prayer,
Who knows the Christ of Christmas.


But see the many aimless thousands who gather on this Christmas Day,
Whose hearts have never yet been opened, or said to Him, “Come in to stay.”

In countless homes the candles burning,
In countless hearts expectant yearning
For gifts and presents, food and fun,
And laughter till the day is done.

But not a tear of grief or sorrow
For Him so poor He had to borrow
A crib, a colt, a boat, a bed
Where He could lay His weary head.

I’m tired of all this empty celebration,
Of feasting, drinking, recreation;
I’ll go instead to Calvary.


And there I’ll kneel with those who know
The meaning of that manger low,
And find the Christ – this Christmas.


I leap by faith across the years
To that great day when He appears
The second time, to rule and reign,
To end all sorrow, death, and pain.

In endless bliss we then shall dwell
With Him who saved our souls from hell.
And worship Christ – not Christmas!





  • Give your bank teller a candy cane! (Or any other little goodie.)
  • Give at least ONE heartfelt compliment to someone everyday. (Save one for yourself, too.)
  • Be the first to say “Merry Christmas.” (Or at least a friendly and hearty “Hello!”)
  • Smile at someone who looks a little “Grinchy.” Don’t be upset if they don’t smile back, but chances are that they will!
  • Help some senior and elderly citizens in your neighborhood put up their decorations. (And remember to go back later to take them down!)
  • Hug a child. (Start with yours!)





Proving once again that just everything in the world is bad for you, it’s now being said that candles are part of our global pollution problem. Candles. Now doesn’t that just burn you up?

Candles are now being blamed for our global pollution problems!  According to research done by the US Environmental Protection Agency (who believes that everything in the world will eventually kill you), burning candles can lead to high levels of pollutants (called particulates) released into the atmosphere. According to one EPA spokesperson, “If I were someone who had a health problem like asthma, and I were looking for things to prevent aggravating my respiratory problems, candles and incense are two things I would seriously consider” getting rid of.” ***MARLAR: Well, yeah – but saying candles are partially responsible for global pollution?  Sometimes I think the EPA is bad for our health.






  1. If you eat a Christmas cookie fresh out of the oven, it has no calories because everyone knows that the first cookie is the test and thus calorie free.


  1. If you drink a diet soda after eating your second cookie, it also has no calories because the diet soda cancels out the cookie calories.


  1. If a friend comes over while you’re making your Christmas cookies and needs to sample, you must sample with your friend. Because your friend’s first cookie is calorie free, (rule #1) yours is also. It would be rude to let your friend sample alone and, being the friend that you are, that makes your cookie calorie free.


  1. Any cookie calories consumed while walking around will fall to your feet and eventually fall off as you move. This is due to gravity and the density of the caloric mass.5. Any calories consumed during the frosting of the Christmas cookies will be used up because it takes many calories to lick excess frosting from a knife without cutting your tongue.


  1. Cookies colored red or green have very few calories. Red ones have three and green ones have five – one calorie for each letter. Make more red ones!


  1. Cookies eaten while watching “Miracle on 34th Street” have no calories because they are part of the entertainment package and not part of one’s personal fuel.8. As always, cookie pieces contain no calories because the process of breaking causes calorie leakage.


  1. Any cookies consumed from someone else’s plate have no calories since the calories rightfully belong to the other person and will cling to their plate. We all know how calories like to CLING!


  1. Any cookies consumed while feeling stressed have no calories because cookies used for medicinal purposes NEVER have calories. It’s a rule!


So, go out and enjoy those Christmas Cookies – we only get them this time of year!




They are the most hated Christmas songs of all time! What would be on YOUR list?

How many times can you hear “Grandma Got Run Over by a Reindeer” or Madonna trying — but not even coming close– to best Eartha Kitt with “Santa Baby” before you just scream? The Washington Post has called these two songs, along with Barbra Streisand’s “Jingle Bells” and the Jackson 5’s “Santa Claus Is Coming to Town” the “sonic equivalent of a chorus of screeching cats.” They are among the most hated Christmas songs of all time — but they aren’t the most hated. The honor of the most hated Christmas song of all time goes to “Jingle Bells,” as “performed” by the Singing Dogs, a 1955 Danish record that was reedited and released in 1970.





Church on the Move’s The Grinch Stole Thriller; keep watching, it gets fun at the 4:30 mark!


This version of “A Christmas Carol” has more warm feelings for me than any other, because I was involved in creating it.


After a quarter of a century on the job, the Hubble Space Telescope has returned some of the most extraordinary cosmic images ever captured. Now Time is out with the 50 Best Images Taken by Hubble. Some of Hubble’s images have become cultural icons. Some have thrilled only scientists. Hubble still has close to a decade of life left before the metal eyelid closes forever.


Does it feel like America is losing God more and more each day?  This might give you some hope then.  America is launching new Protestant churches faster than it loses old ones, attracting many people who previously didn’t attend anywhere. According to a new LifeWay Research studies show, more than 4,000 new churches opened their doors in 2014, outpacing the 3,700 that closed. The study also found that, on average, 42 percent of those worshipping at churches launched since 2008 previously never attended church or hadn’t attended in many years.


Even as the digital revolution sweeps over our lives, many families are rediscovering the simple joys of traditional board games. According to Focus on the Families Thriving Family Magazine, tabletop games encourage family interaction and can teach kids valuable life skills, such as how to follow rules, take turns and get along with others. While classics like Monopoly and Uno are still popular today, families have plenty of new choices to liven up their game nights. To help you find some of these games, Thriving Family has put together several new game reviews.


One man’s discovery while cleaning out his garage gives a whole new meaning to the “something old” portion of the well-known bridal adage. According to Yahoo news, When Ronald Warninger, of Yakima, Washington, was cleaning out his garage in late November, he came across his grandparents’ 100-year-old wedding cake, safely preserved in an old hatbox, and tucked inside a big kettle-like canning pot. Even though it had been in and out of freezers and had lived through a couple world wars, Warninger says the cake was in perfect shape.




It’s amazing how everybody gets into the Christmas spirit. I actually received a card from the finance company that said, “Merry Christmas: Second Notice!”




(Updated as it comes available. The Way WE Work is written by Mark Elfstrand from in Chicago.)


Better Check Your List Twice


What is the true meaning of Christmas? It must have a lot to do with Santa Claus. Let’s check the lyrics of some of our Christmas favorites! That will help us tell the story.

We begin with, “All I Want for Christmas is My Two Front Teeth.” This one gets us back to the basics. No need for all those toys and goodies from Santa. Just… two teeth. And why? So this sweet child can wish everyone a Merry Christmas. Oh…and he’ll be able to say, “Sister Susie sitting on a thistle!” Let’s all try that. Thank goodness for modest requests.

“Santa Baby,” the Santa song for adults, has been around since 1953! Eartha Kitt made it a hit. This girl really has her list working. A sable under the tree, a ’54 convertible, a yacht, and the deed to a platinum mine! Touching. And one can easily tell she’s been missing out on a lot of fun dates just trying to be good enough to get stuff. Wonder if St. Nicholas likes the term, Santa Baby? Well, maybe from Mrs. Claus.

In the classic, “Jolly Old St. Nicholas,” again we’re back to basics. “Johnny wants a pair of skates, Susie wants a sled. Nellie wants a picture book, yellow, blue and red.” The song’s conclusion leaves a mature thought: “Choose for me, dear Santa Claus, what you think is best.” This chap might be surprised by what St. Nick considered important.

My final Santa selection is the famous, “Santa Claus is Coming to Town.” This one deserves a close theological review. As we would learn here, Santa is BIG on performance.

We are told not to pout or cry with Santa coming to town. He’s got some kind of list that he apparently checks twice to determine if we’ve been naughty or nice. And since he’s aware of our sleeping habits and our secret lives, we’d better watch out! Kids who do behave will have a jubilee building some kind of toyland “all around the Christmas tree.” Pretty exciting stuff.

Apart from Santa songs, there is a plethora of other meaningless rhymes set to music that distracts us from the idea that a Savior for the world was once born. Of course, the Jesus of whom we are told never asked us to celebrate His birthday. We decided to do that.

And then along comes old St. Nick. Or more properly said, Saint Nicholas. William Bennett gave us a beautiful history of this legendary figure in his 2009 book, The True Saint Nicholas: Why He Matters to Christmas. The real figure was a Greek bishop. History says he lived from 270 to 346 AD. This is recommended reading for all.

A shorter course on the jolly soul can be found at a St. Nicholas center website. Here we learn what many hold to be true about why we consider him so “saintly.” Check this: “His wealthy parents, who raised him to be a devout Christian, died in an epidemic while Nicholas was still young. Obeying Jesus’s words to “sell what you own and give the money to the poor,” Nicholas used his whole inheritance to assist the needy, the sick, and the suffering. He dedicated his life to serving God and was made Bishop of Myra while still a young man. Bishop Nicholas became known throughout the land for his generosity to those in need, his love for children, and his concern for sailors and ships.”

Checking closely on these details of St.Nick’s life, we find no evidence of keeping lists. Or checking them twice. And I hope I don’t disappoint anyone by saying there also appears to be a lack of evidence that he owned reindeer. Or moved north from Greece or Turkey. I mean, why would you?

We are a performance driven people. We prefer to check off lists of things we believe we’ve done right. In Jesus’s time, a very rich young man approached Jesus and said, “Good Teacher, what shall I do to inherit eternal life?” And Jesus said to him, “You know the commandments, ‘Do not murder, Do not commit adultery, Do not steal, Do not bear false witness, Do not defraud, Honor your father and mother.’” (And that’s only a partial list of do-goods.)

So the rich guy says, “Teacher, I have kept all these things from my youth up.” Looking at him, Jesus felt a love for him and said to him, “One thing you lack: go and sell all you possess and give to the poor, and you will have treasure in heaven; and come, follow Me.” But at these words he was saddened, and he went away grieving, for he was one who owned much property.” (Mark 10:17-22)

Here’s the thing. St. Nicholas got it. The reason Santa can belly laugh in joy with “Ho, Ho, Ho!” is because the weight of materialism and sinless performance is gone. And that’s because of Jesus.

One of the greatest gifts we can give our children is teaching Godly contentment. (1 Timothy 6:6-10). Another is the gift of sharing. And most importantly, is to pass along the gift of good news that leads to eternal life.

What’s on your list to become right with God? There should only be one thing. It begins with “J.”

Merry Christmas.

That’s The Way WE Work. Click on the link to the right to connect via Facebook.
Catch “Let’s Talk with Mark Elfstrand” weekday afternoons from 4-6pm on AM 1160 Hope for Your Life. To listen to the live broadcast or a podcast of previous shows click here.




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 18, 2015…


Star Wars: The Force Awakens—Fans have waited so long and it is here.  Your favorites are in the film including Harrison Ford and Carrie Fisher, and new actors such as Adam Driver, Gwendoline Christie and Daisy Ridley.  The storm troopers don’t always do what they are told (rebellion in the ranks?) and the bad guys are the First Order. It is war in the galaxy far, far away, so buckle on your light saber and away we go.  “Star Wars: The Force Awakens” is rated PG 13. Rating of 4 for fans and that includes just about everyone.  Enjoy.


Sisters—Amy Poehler and Tina Fey star as just that…two sisters…who don’t always get along. They decide they want to have the rowdiest party ever.  I mean ever.  Of course, this means the audience envies what they do because if you tried it, the police would be there.  “Sisters” is rated R. No rating.


Son Of Saul (opening in select cities)—This is a film about the Holocaust and a man who works in a crematorium and still tries to honor the dead. Subtitles. Stars Gaza Rohrig and Levente Molnar. “Son Of Saul” is rated R. No rating.


DECEMBER 23-25, 2015…


Alvin and the Chipmunks: The Road Chip has the guys on the road again. Fans know who they are.


Concussion stars Will Smith as the pathologist who begins to study the effect of concussions in football.


Daddy’s Home comedy has Will Ferrell trying to be a good step-father while Mark Wahlberg is the trouble-making Dad.


Joy has Jennifer Lawrence taking on the role of the woman who invited the Miracle Mop.


Point Break is a remake of the classic crime film that starred Patrick Swayze. This time, Luke Bracey stars.


Snowden (opening in select cities) stars Joseph Gordon-Levitt as the person who passed secrets.


Macbeth (opening in select cities) has Michael Fassbender in the title role with Marion Cotillard as Lady Macbeth.


The Big Short has Ryan Gosling and Brad Pitt as guys who enjoy the betting game.


Youth (opening in select cities) is a beautifully photographed film about aging and stars Michael Caine and Harvey Keitel.


Legend (opening in select cities) is finally opening widely and stars Tom Hardy in two roles, as the Kray Brothers who ran organized crime in London in the 1960’s.


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