Sunday, December 9, 2018

The White Buffalo

The Lakota Sioux are a nation of Native Americans who roamed the northern plains in and around the Black Hills of South Dakota.

They have a prophecy known as the White Buffalo Calf Woman.

According to the prophecy, two warriors were out hunting buffalo, approximately 2,000 years ago, when they spotted a white buffalo calf. As they approached the calf, it turned into a beautiful young Indian girl.

One of the warriors had bad thoughts in his mind. The Indian girl told him to step forward whereupon a black cloud came over his body. When the black cloud disappeared, the warrior with bad thoughts had no more flesh or blood on his bones.

The other warrior kneeled and prayed. The Indian girl told him to tell his people that she would bring them a sacred bundle in four days.

So the warrior went back to his people and told the elders. Then all the Lakota people gathered in a circle and the warrior told them what the Indian girl had instructed him to say.

On the fourth day, a cloud came down from the sky and off stepped a white buffalo calf.

As it reached the earth, it stood up and became a beautiful young woman, carrying a sacred bundle.

The woman spent four days among the Lakota people, teaching them the seven sacred ceremonies.

1) The purification ceremony of the sweat lodge
2) The child naming ceremony
3) The healing ceremony
4) The making of relatives or adoption ceremony
5) The marriage ceremony
6) The vision quest
7) The sun dance ceremony

As long as the Lakota people performed these ceremonies, they would remain caretakers of the land.

Then the beautiful woman left, the same way as she arrived, vowing to someday return for the sacred bundle.

The sacred bundle, known as the White Buffalo Calf Pipe, has been passed down from generation to generation of Lakota and is kept in a sacred place on an Indian reservation in South Dakota.

The White Buffalo Calf Woman also made several prophecies upon her departure.

One of these prophecies was that the birth of a white buffalo would be a sign that it would be near the time of her return. And upon her return, she would purify the world, bringing harmony, balance and spirituality back to the earth, and all the races of man would live in peace.

A white buffalo calf is projected to be a one in 10 million occurrence. These are about the same odds as finding the lost Ark of the Covenant in a Dumpster behind the convenience store in Toad Suck, Arkansas.

In August of 1994, a white buffalo was born in Janesville, Wisconsin. Although this event excited many Native American at the time, this particular buffalo was actually born red and later turned white.

On May 22, 2004, a white buffalo calf came into this world at the Spirit Mountain Ranch near Flagstaff, Arizona. This ranch has successfully bred three generations of white buffalo, As of the spring of 2008 their herd consists of 11 white buffalo.

On May 31, 2008, a white buffalo calf was born in Jamestown, North Dakota. Plus, several other white buffalo have come into existence over the last decade.

Peace on earth seems like a hard nut to crack these days. Too many people are determined to force their way of life on others, through coercion and violence.

Ultimately, those who live by the sword, die by the sword.

Unfortunately, it creates a bloody mess for the rest of us caught in the middle.

You can’t change the world -- you can only change yourself.

Peace on earth starts with patience and grace, and treating others the way you want to be treated.

For the Lakota people, peace on earth starts with a white buffalo.

Mi taku oyasin -- We are all related (Lakota proverb).

Quote for the Day – “It is not necessary for eagles to be crows.” Sitting Bull

Bret Burquest is the author of 12 books. He lives in the Ozark Mountains with a few dogs and where peace is a state of mind.

Tuesday, October 30, 2018

Humorous Errors on Student Essays

Some students have a way of writing things in a slightly different manner than intended, as demonstrated in the following excerpts from tests and essays of eight graders through college, complied by Richard Lederer, a teacher in St Paul.

  • The Greeks were a highly sculptured people, and without them we wouldn’t have history. The Greeks also had myths. A myth is a female moth.

  • The Magna Carta provided that no man should be hanged twice for the same offense.

  • The Bible is full of interesting caricatures. In the first book of the Bible, Guinessis, Adam and Eve were created by an apple tree. One of their children, Cain, asked, “Am I my brother’s son?”

  • Ancient Egypt was inhabited by mummies and they all wrote in hydraulics. They lived in the Sarah Dessert. The climate of the Sarah is such that the inhabitants have to live elsewhere.

  • Moses led the Hebrew slaves to the Red Sea, where they made unleavened bread, which is bread made without ingredients. Moses went up on Mount Cyanide to get the Ten Commandments. He died before he ever reached Canada.

  • Solomon had three hundred wives and seven hundred porcupines.

  • Homer was not written by Homer but by another man of that name.

  • In the Olympic games, Greeks ran races, jumped, hurled biscuits, and threw the java.

  • It was an age of great inventions and discoveries. Gutenberg invented removable type and the Bible. Another important invention was the circulation of blood.

  • Sir Francis Drake circumcised the world with a 100-foot clipper.

  • The greatest writer of the Renaissance was William Shakespeare. He was born in the year 1564, supposedly on his birthday.

  • Queen Victoria was the longest queen. She sat on a thorn for 63 years. Her death was the final event that ended her reign.

  • The winter of 1620 was a hard one for the Pilgrims. Many died and many babies were born. Captain John Smith was responsible for all this.

  • Thomas Jefferson, a Virgin, and Benjamin Franklin were two singers of the Declaration of Independence. Franklin discovered electricity by rubbing two cats together. Franklin died in 1790 and is still dead.

  • Gravity was invented by Isaac Walton. It is chiefly noticeable when apples are falling off the trees.

  • Johann Bach wrote a great many musical compositions and had a large number of children. In between he practiced on an old spinster which he kept in the attic. Bach died from 1750 to the present.

  • Handel was a great composer. He was half German, half Italian and half English. He was very large.

  • Beethoven wrote music even though he was deaf. He was so deaf he wrote loud music. Beethoven expired in 1827 and later died for this.

  • The nineteenth century was a time of many inventions. People stopped reproducing by hand and started reproducing by machine. The invention of the steamboat caused a network of rivers to spring up.

  • William Tell shot an arrow through an apple while standing on his son’s head.

  • The sun never sets on the British Empire because the British Empire is in the East and the sun sets in the West.

  • Abraham Lincoln became America’s greatest Precedent. Lincoln’s mother died in infancy, and he was born in a log cabin that he built with his own hands.

Quote for the Day – "Students achieving Oneness will move on to Twoness." Woody Allen

Bret Burquest is the author of 12 books. He lives in the Ozark Mountains with a few dogs and is a former college instructor (among other things) who has long ago achieved oneness, but still working on twoness.

Thursday, October 11, 2018

Men, Women & Fashion

When I was a young corporate stooge, I always wore a dark three-piece suit with a flashy necktie. Now that I’m older and wiser, I wonder what took me so long to burn all my neckties.

The necktie dates back to 1660 when a crack military regiment from Croatia visited France. They had recently defeated Turkey and were presented to King Louis XIV in Paris where they were honored for their glorious victory.

King Louis XIV apparently had an eye for men’s fashion. He was particularly enchanted with the brightly colored silk handkerchiefs adorning the necks of the Croatian officers. Being a man of power and whimsy, he soon created his own regiment of silk-handkerchief-adorned soldiers which he called the Royal Cravattes.

France has always been a country of pretentious snobs and girly-men. Their major accomplishment for the betterment of mankind was the invention of the soufflé.

Before long, the new fashion statement made its way across the channel to England. By 1700, no man in Britain was considered a gentleman without a cravat or necktie. Some cravats were even worn so high that a man had to turn his whole body just to turn his head.

Unfortunately, this fashion folly eventually drifted across the Atlantic Ocean to the colonies.

To this very day, men in America, although a fairly enlightened species, still wear neckties.

The only conceivable logical reason a man would wrap a fabric around his neck is to keep warm. Short of that, the only other plausible explanation is that men wrap a fabric around their necks because other men wrap a fabric around their necks and they desperately want to be associated with them.

Obviously, men are followers of followers, like a flock of sheep. And if you're a sheep following other sheep, you only get one view of the world and it isn’t pretty.

A man who wears a necktie is a man who cannot think for himself. He's merely playing a role. If his attire is dishonest, perhaps he is dishonest as well.

Politicians all wear neckties. So do bankers, lawyers and used car salesmen. None of them would score very high on a Trust-O-Meter.

The biggest idiots of all are the men who wear a bow tie. They consider themselves to be rebels. But in reality, they are merely followers with bad taste. A man who wears a bow tie is a man in serious need of a brain transplant.

The functionless necktie, worn by men under the illusion of being socially acceptable within the circle of men who wear neckties, is overwhelming proof that men are shallow seekers of approval. They do what other men do simply to blend in with the crowd.

Men dress to be like other men.

On the other hand, women have a flair for fashion, which changes with the seasons. They don't want to blend in, they want to stand out and be noticed.

A man is as good as he has to be, a woman is as bad as she dares.

Women dress to be annoying to other women.

Men are sheep -- women are from Venus.

Quote for the Day – "Men are so willing to respect anything that bores them." Marilyn Monroe

Bret Burquest is the author of 12 books. He lives in the Ozark Mountains with a couple of dogs and is the proud owner of zero neckties.

Sunday, September 30, 2018

Dogs and Cats

Dogs are extremely social animals whose psychological welfare is dependent on an association with other dogs in a pack while following the guidance of the pack leader. Domestic dogs rely on a human master as a surrogate pack leader. Properly trained, a man can be dog's best friend.

Cats don’t need a pack leader to show the way. They’re self-contained units of indifference that rely mostly on whim.

Dogs don’t dwell on the past and give little thought to the future beyond their next meal. They live almost exclusively in the present.

Cats don’t dwell on anything, including the present. They live almost exclusively in a different dimension.

Show dogs fall into six categories, depending on their talents and lineage -- sporting breeds, hound breeds, working breeds, terrier breeds, toy breeds and non-sporting breeds. A non-pedigree dog is called a mutt.

Show cats fall into two categories, depending on the length of their hair -- longhaired division and shorthaired division. A non-pedigree cat is called a cat.

Dogs perform functional tasks such as herding livestock, following scents, retrieving game and providing protection.

Cats perform dysfunctional tasks such as unraveling a ball of twine or chasing an imaginary object.

Dogs can hear frequencies up to 35,000 vibrations per second, as opposed to 20,000 in human beings.

Cats can hear frequencies up to the eleven dimensions of the Astral Plane, including the Twilight Zone. They can also hear Elvis, Jimmy Hoffa and the Ghost of Christmas Past.

Dogs have a superior sense of smell.

Cats have a sense of superiority.

Dogs are eager to learn new commands. They are pleased whenever they please their human masters.

Cats are eager to be treated like royalty. They are pleased whenever they feel like being pleased.

Dog people love their canines and consider them to be members of the family. In return, dogs love, honor and obey their human companions. It’s a lasting relationship.

Cat people love their felines and consider them to be members of the family. In return, cats couldn't care less. There is no relationship.

Dog people have a psychological desire to be needed.

Cat people have a psychological desire to be rejected.

I’m a dog person. My dog, Buddy Lee, is a rambunctious dude of unknown breed. I found him in a local animal shelter over a dozen years ago. Taking naps and eating are Buddy Lee's major activities. He dislikes being disturbed, particularly by anyone knocking on the front door. We have much in common.

My other dog is Donner. My nephew rescued him from a shelter and left him in my care when he moved to New Mexico a few years ago. Donner is an explorer of everything in all directions but always returns home after another adventure.

Two great little canine goodballs -- we are family. Acquiring a dog is the only opportunity a human being ever has to choose a relative.

If you want to be loved, get a dog.

If you want to be ignored, get a cat.

Quote for the Day – "Cats are intended to teach us that not everything in nature has a purpose." Garrison Keillor

Bret Burquest is the author of 12 books. He lives in the Ozark Mountains with a couple of dogs and an imaginary girlfriend named Tequila Mockingbird.