Dear Pastor J,
Yesterday's outdoor church service and church picnic were great! We really enjoyed the beautiful setting of the state park and were glad about having the opportunity to spend a few hours in fellowship with so many people from the congregation and their guests.
The thing that I thought was really great was the fact that the kids of the congregation had a good chance to play together and solidify as a self-identified group. How can you get any better than that?
As I am typing this at 0415 on Monday morning, with my stomach doing the acid reflux gurgle, it comes to me that there might have been a few things better than than watching the kids play... as far-fetched as this might seem. One of those things happened during the service. You might have noticed, during one of the hymns, that I was shaking and had my hand over my face. Just so you know, it wasn't because I was overcome by the solemnity of the song... no, it was because a certain member of the church council, known to my other readers as Mrs Gunfighter, picked that moment in the service, which was all about renewal and respect for the environment which God has given us, to start cracking wise.
I suppose I should be truthful here and say that I started it when I told my dear wife that one of the hymns reminded me the old "Woodsy The Owl" commercials (you know... Give a hoot, don't pollute). While you started the sermon and admonished us to care for God's creation, Mrs Gunfighter (whom I suspect wasn't enjoying the sermon) leaned over and said to me "look! Over there! (pointing out to the beautiful Potomac river) It's that indian in the canoe... from the old commercial, and HE'S CRYING!").
You know... I try to maintain my composure at church, even though funny things happen from time to time... but, this was too much. I hadn't thought of the old Iron Eyes Cody commercial in years, and at that moment all I could think of was that old public service announcement from the 1970's, and I lost it. I had to cover my face, and it was really hard to hide the heaving of my shoulders. Even now, with my gut feeling like I have been knifed, I can't help but laugh about it.
Anyway, back to the picnic... another funny moment came during the "cooking of the hamburgers." Dude, next time we have a cookout, you need to step away from the lighter fluid... I could have sworn we were going to have a major fire, respect for God's creation or no. Apparently, and I got this from one of the congregants at the END of the burger line, that whole rack of burgers tasted like they were cooked on a flame from a refinery fire! From where Mrs GF and I were sitting, all we could see was you, P, and J, looking at the charcoal and squirting lighter fluid on it every 30 seconds or so. I know it doesn't sound funny, but trust me on this... it was.
Anyway, Iron Eyes Cody, and Refinery Burgers notwithstanding, we had a fine old time yesterday. Soccer Girl was nearly beside herself from playing at the playground, throwing the Frisbee, fishing, chatting with the young women, and getting to play with your daughter, to whom, if you hadn't already noticed, she is particularly attached. By the time she went to bed last night she was absolutely bushed.
Good times. Good times.****NOTE**** Don't worry, neither the park nor the river look anything like the one in the commercial. The natural beauty of the place is stunning.****