Big broad shoulders opening up for a big hug

CHICAGO

Yesternight, Tina and I drove back into Chicago with a feeling of relief and thankfulness.

We were able to drive down to NC in just over 11 hours, a record. And we got back in about 11.5. Another record.

When we see the Willis Tower in the distance, one of us inevitably says something like, “Gosh, I love this city. How could we live anywhere else?”

We revel for 15 minutes in how great it is to live here.

How great it is to drive back into a city with so much diversity of race, opinion, ideas and creativity.

Here, you get a variety of people who may shoot you, take your money, or hug you and be your friend.

I know, that sounds like your neighborhood, too. But you’re — likely — not surrounded by this beautiful concrete jungle.

Perhaps my religion is Chicago. It’s got heaven, hell and a shit load of what’s between.

But it’s visible. It’s real. And the reality of it makes all the difference.

Happy New Year to you and yours.

Let’s tiptoe into Hobby Lobby and belt out a scream

In the world of manufactured, contrived controversies, the Hobby Lobby drama is surely some of the best of all time.

And by best, I mean worst.

Over the last week, Tina and I were in North Carolina visiting my family and friends. While there, Tina wanted to buy some spray paint so my parents guided us toward Hobby Lobby, a — according to my dad — very lucrative chain hobby store apparently owned by Christians.

Evangelical Christians, perhaps is a better descriptor.

With Obama’s health care legislation slowly coming into effect, Hobby Lobby’s owners are up-in-arms over the requirement to have insurance coverage for its employees that includes access to birth control and more importantly the morning after pill and the week after pill.

You can read more about it — in mainstream media — here, here, here, here and oh — look at that — here

I remember hearing a bit about the story — in mainstream media — over the past couple weeks.

I write that, because people who post it are claiming the mainstream media is not covering it.

So just so we’re straight, the mainstream media is covering the story. The complaint should be, “But they aren’t screaming about how awful this Christian oppression is!”

Oh the horror. Oh the pain.

While we were standing in line to buy spray paint at Hobby Lobby, my dad told Tina about the greatness of the Hobby Lobby Enterprise, that they make great profits. They treat their employees with a family-centric goodness (they get off evenings and Sundays). They are profitable and stand by their Christian principles.

Last night, I saw this update on Facebook:

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