“Spare the rod and spoil the child”

It’s not surprising that many people think the quote “Spare the rod and spoil the child” comes from the Bible. There are at least five verses in the Bible’s Book of Proverbs that talk about using a rod to beat a child — for his own good, of course. The most famous is Proverbs 13:24: … Read more

Bring me the head of John the Baptist – and Alfredo Garcia…

Director Sam Peckinpah’s 1974 film Bring Me the Head of Alfredo Garcia, starring Warren Oates, is one of my favorite movies from the Seventies.   The film’s title comes from a line in the movie said by the main villain El Jefe (played by actor Emilio Fernández). When El Jefe finds out his daughter has had … Read more

“Not fade away…”

[An updated version of a previous post. Thanks to the readers who emailed corrections to me.] On October 27, 1957, American Rockabilly and rock music pioneer Buddy Holly and his band the Crickets released their second 45 rpm single, as a follow-up to their first smash hit “Peggy Sue.” This new single featured “Oh Boy” … Read more

“For every creature of God is good.”

Under a federal law passed by Congress in 1942, the date for Thanksgiving in the United States varies from year to year. It’s the fourth Thursday of the month. But the anniversary of the first official Thanksgiving set by federal decree in our country is November 26th. In 1789, President George Washington issued a proclamation … Read more

“The Father, the Son and the Holy Ghost” become official

The fracturing of the Christian religion into various churches and doctrines with different beliefs started in the early centuries of Christianity. One source of division was a debate between Christians who believed in Trinitarianism and those who believed in Arianism. Trinitarianism was based in part on Matthew 28:19, a verse in the Bible which says: … Read more

The “pearl of great price”: an allegory for people who don’t want to win the lottery

Every once in a while, there’s a news story about somebody who won millions in a lottery and ended up being miserable as a result. I remember one from a few years ago that sounded like a Shakespearean tragedy. It was about a Pennsylvania man, William “Bud” Post, who won $16 million in the state … Read more