Thursday, April 19, 2018

Scratching the Surface of the Psalms - 3

Kopp Disclosure
(John 3:19-21)
  
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Scratching the Surface of the Psalms

#3

“Jesus Saves!”

          Have you ever been disliked, dissed, dismissed, dumped, or even damned for disagreeing with someone?

          I’ll never forget the pastor search committee that rejected me as a candidate to become their pastor because I said they talked more about Rick Warren than Jesus and being a “purpose-driven” church than grace, mercy, forgiveness, and agape.

          I said they were confusing people who just need Jesus by the book rather than slick packaging through personalities, programs, T-shirts, banners, the latest technologies, and other trinkets.

          It’s kinda like sermons that have to be punctuated by pictures and movie clips on big screens in sanctuaries because the preacher isn’t called or gifted or passionate or excited enough about Jesus to hold anybody’s attention.

          I’m reminded of going to see an old pastor in town not long after I was ordained.

          “Why is your church growing and mine isn’t?” I asked.

          He said, “Nothing can happen through you that has not first happened to you.  You can’t give away what you ain’t got for yourself.  People need Jesus.  They don’t need Bob or Billy or Oral or…”

          Sadly, obviously, I guess Jesus just isn’t enough for some people.

          Paul was right about some people needing to have their ears tickled before they’ll listen.

          When I was a young pastor, I filled my study with books and plastered the walls with parchments to pretend I was really smart, wore the best shoes and suits and ties and vestments that I could afford to show people that they should pay attention to me, insisted on titles, elevated and separated myself by degrees, and did everything that I could do to persuade people that I was worthy of their…whatever I thought defined being worthy…that violates the judgment of Jesus in Matthew 23.

          I was sooooooo young.

          While I have a long way to go, I’m growing up.

          Jesus is enough.

          Just Jesus.

          Jesus saves.

          Yes, Paul was right again: “When I was a child, I spoke like a child, reasoned like a child…but when I became a man…”

          When I started growing up into Him – and I confess I’m still just scratching the surface of my relationship with Jesus – I began to realize it’s all about Jesus.

          A church or you or me or anyone at her or his best is all about Him.

          Jesus is enough.

          Just Jesus.

          Jesus saves.

          That’s especially and thankfully true when we’re feeling assaulted by the beast’s children who dislike or even hate us and work so darkly to slander and slay us.

          Psalm 3 is about God saving us from enemies.

          Contextually, David was praying from a broken heart.

          With the voice of Jesus in the distance who warned a price of fidelity will be the hatred of even people who are closest to us – “You will be hated by everyone including members of your own families because you love Me!” – David was being stalked and targeted for assassination by his own son.

          I like Frederick Buechner’s summary of the sadness: “Almost from the start, Absalom had a number of strikes against him…too handsome for his own good…his father, King David, was always either spoiling him rotten or reading him the riot act…He murdered his lecherous brother Amnon for fooling around with their sister Tamar, and when the old war horse Joab wouldn’t help him patch things up with David afterwards, he set fire to his hay field.  All Israel found this kind of derring-do irresistible, of course, and when he eventually led a revolt against his father, a lot of them joined him.”

          “On the eve of the crucial battle,” Buechner wrote, “David was a wreck.  If he was afraid he might lose his throne, he was even more afraid he might lose Absalom.  The boy was the thorn in his flesh, but he was also the apple of his eye…and before the fighting started, he told the chiefs of staff till they were sick of hearing it that if Absalom fell into their clutches, they must promise to go easy on him for his father’s sake.”

          Joab killed Absalom to preserve David’s throne and it broke David’s heart just like we break God’s even when we deserve His judgment: “O my son Absalom, my son, my son…Would I had died instead of you, O Absalom, my son, my son.”

          Buechner’s conclusion: “If he could have done the boy’s dying for him, he would have done it.  If he could have paid the price of the boy’s betrayal of him, he would have paid it.  If he could have given his own life to make the boy alive again, he would have given it.  But even a king can’t do things like that.  As later history was to prove, it takes a God.”

          That’s the pain leading to the theme of Psalm 3.

          Jesus is enough.

          Just Jesus.

          Jesus saves.

          Like us too often, David felt the pressured, stressed, and threatened by enemies: “God, look at how many people hate me! There are so many; and they taunt me, ‘So where is God when you need Him?’”

          Like us, David knew the only One who will save sooner or later, usually sooner than later, and definitely in the end: “But You, Lord, are a shield around me.  You lift my head and spirit.  You save me from every enemy in time for all time.”

          Like us, David could sleep peacefully and rise and shine in the intimate knowledge of God as Savior: “I sleep.  Then I’m up again – rested, tall and steady.  I’m fearless because God is on my side.”

          Like us, David trusted God’s ultimate justice: “Rise up, Savior!  Slap down my enemies!  My enemies are Your enemies and Your enemies are My enemies!  We’re family!”

          Like us, David heralded the most important truth in human history: “Salvation comes from God!  Real help comes from God in time and forever!”
          Our faith – trust and confidence and hope and anticipation – in God can be summed up so concisely, compellingly, and conclusively.

          Jesus is enough.

          Just Jesus.

          Jesus saves.

@#$%

Blessings and Love!

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Shatter the sound of silence!

Wake up!  Look up!  Stand up!  Speak up!  Act up for Jesus!

Salt!  Shine!  Leavenate!

@#$%



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Monday, April 16, 2018

Scratching the Surface of the Psalms - 2

Kopp Disclosure
(John 3:19-21)

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Scratching the Surface of the Psalms

#2

“The Difference Between Smart and Stupid People”

Winning the most important Oscars for Best Picture, Best Director, and Best Actor in 1995, Forrest Gump is one of those movies that we watch over and over and over again because of the uncommon wisdom in a gentle soul played so exquisitely by Tom Hanks.

“Do you ever dream, Forrest,” asks his beloved Jenny, “about who you’re gonna be?” Forrest answers, “Aren’t I going to be me?”

He asks his mother, “What’s my destiny, Mama?”  She answers, “You’re gonna have to figure that out for yourself.”

“My Mama always said,” he accepted as a positive way to approach the future without being chained to the past, “you’ve got to put the past behind you before you can move on.”

Though Christians like us see the last breath as a nano-second from paradise, we also know this life can be very, very, very good if we don’t mess it up because that’s how God designed it; and Forrest echoed that truth: “Mama always said, dying was a part of life.  I sure wish it wasn’t.”

There were so many funny moments in the movie; like when Lieutenant Dan asked, “Have you found Jesus yet, Gump?”  With that special look on his face that we all recall, he says, “I didn’t know I was supposed to be looking for him, sir.”

And lots of us could benefit by confessing with him: “And that’s all I have to say about that.”

Certainly, he captures the romance, opportunities, challenges, and wisdom of relying on God for existential as well as eternal salvation in this line: “My momma always said, ‘Life was like a box of chocolates.  You never know what you’re gonna get.’”

Sadly, as I look around at our world, nation, schools, marriages, families, and even too many churches, I’ve reached his conclusion, “Stupid is as stupid does.”

I think of Kurt Vonnegut who wrote in Palm Sunday, “An Indianapolis cousin of mine, who was also a high school classmate did very badly at the University of Michigan while I did badly at Cornell.  His father asked him what the trouble was, and he made what I consider an admirable reply: ‘Don’t you know, Father? I’m dumb!’ It was the truth.”

I also think of Dalton Trumbo - and folks who are drinking the Kool-Aid from the far left that’s going to kill the Bill of Rights if we’re not careful may want to check out his defense of the 1st Amendment that’s under such assault these days – who said, “There are many ignorant, angry people in the world.  And they appear to be breeding in record numbers.  All we can do is stay together and remain vigilant.”

Though saddened to admit it, I agree with Winston Churchill: “The best argument against democracy is a five minute conversation with the average voter.”

Yes, we know some people don’t like to use the word stupid to describe some people; but, well, uh, geez, sigh, gasp, uh,…some people are just plain old stupid.

Stupid beliefs and behaviors come from, uh, well, uh, geez, sigh, gasp, uh,…just plain old stupid people.

Gump is right: “Stupid is as stupid does.”

Psalm 2 is about the difference between smart and stupid people.

Simply, smart people know God is smarter than they are and pay attention to Him in all things at all times in all places with all people while stupid people think they are smarter than God and don’t pay attention to Him in all things at all times in all places with all people.

Let’s take a closer look at the difference.

●Stupid people are arrogant; thinking what they think somehow matters when it comes to what God commands: “Why do the nations rebel against God?  They conspire against God.  They want to be free from God’s law and order…Earth-leaders push for position.  Demagogues and delegates meet for summit talks.  The God-deniers and the Messiah-defiers say, ‘Let’s get free of God!  Cast loose from Messiah!’”

●God laughs at the arrogance of stupid people: “God laughs at them.  God ridicules them.  God mocks them…He’s amused at their presumption.”

Jesus calls them fools at the end of His greatest sermon; building their lives and destinies on sinkable sand.  Actually, Jesus uses a Greek word that transliterates as morons.  Morons go around saying, “I know that’s what God says, but we think we know better than God and act like it!”

Some people are so…stupid.

●God’s laughter turns to anger against those who are so stupidly arrogant: “Then He speaks to them in anger…Furiously, He shuts them up: ‘Don’t you know there’s a King in Zion?’”

God tolerates no rivals to His sovereignty.

Check out the first table of the law in Exodus 20.

●God has appointed Himself as Messiah in Jesus with the continuing witness of the Holy Spirit as sovereign: “I have consecrated my King on Zion…He said to Me, ‘You are My Son; today I have become Your Father.  Ask of Me, and I will make the nations Your inheritance and the ends of the earth Your possession.  You will break them with a rod of iron.  You will shatter them like pottery.”

His message is clear.

Don’t mess with the anointed; and if we do, we will pay for it sooner or later, usually sooner than later, and definitely in the end.

Check history.

Anyone who has ever messed with God’s anointed – individually, corporately, ecclesiastically, nationally, or socioeconomically – has suffered terrible consequences.

People who pick on God’s family have short shelf lives.

Their gains and fames have a shorter eternal and usually existential life span than Jimmy Kimmel ratings.

●Yet, still, amazingly, God wants to save everybody; including stupid people: “So now, kings, be wise; receive instruction, you judges on the earth.  Serve the Lord with reverential awe…Pay homage to the Son, or He will be angry and you will perish in your rebellion…Use your heads…Your very lives are in danger…His anger is about to explode…But if you make a run for God, you won’t regret it!…All those who turn to Him and take refuge in Him are happy!”

Paul often wrote, “God wants everybody to be saved!”

The most memorized verse in Holy Scripture is John 3:16.

Pero, it’s a choice.

God knocks on the door of our hearts.

We open our heads, hearts, and guts to Him and live here and now and forever or not.

Paul explained, “If you confess with your mouth, ‘Jesus is Lord,’ and believe in your heart that God raised Him from the dead, you will be saved…No one who believes on Him will be put to shame…No one who trusts God will ever regret it…Everyone who calls on the name of the Lord will be saved.”

Jesus promised and warned, “Anyone who hears My word and believes Him who sent Me has eternal life and will not come under judgment but has passed from death to life.”

Pero, again, it’s a choice.

We choose to be happy here and now and forever or not.

Jesus was candid about the choice before everyone: “This is the judgment.  Light has come into the world.  Too many people love darkness more than light…Anyone who believes in Him is not condemned, but anyone who does not believe is already condemned, because he has not believed in the name of the One and Only Son of God.”

That’s why Psalm 2 appeals to our intelligence: “Be wise!  Be smart!  Don’t be so stupid!  Choose God!”

The difference between smart and stupid people is smart people choose God and stupid people don’t.

It’s like that banner that pops up around Christmas every year: “Wise men still seek Him!”

Gump is right: “Stupid is as stupid does.”

It’s so stupid to try to live without God; and only really, really, really stupid people do that.

It’s so smart to live in/through/for God; and all really, really, really saved people do that.


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Blessings and Love!

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Shatter the sound of silence!

Wake up!  Look up!  Stand up!  Speak up!  Act up for Jesus!

Salt!  Shine!  Leavenate!

@#$%


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Monday, April 9, 2018

Scratching the Surface of the Psalms - 1

Kopp Disclosure
(John 3:19-21)

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Scratching the Surface of the Psalms

#1

“How to Live Happily Ever After”

While forgetting who said it to me, it’s among the best advice that I’ve ever received: “Sometimes it’s better to talk to God about someone than to talk to someone about God.”

That’s especially true when it comes to irascibles, irregulars, and irreconcilables; or as I wrote in a book that nobody’s read, “Trying to be rational with the irrational is illogical.”

Tinkling in the wind comes to mind.

Because too many people are so auto-suggestively blinded by their ignorant ideologies and idolatries masquerading as faith or theology, intelligent conversations without hysterics about the sanctity of all human life, drugs, gangs, the environment, Islam, the 1st and 2nd amendments, human sexuality, marriage, Hillary, Donald, or just about anything are rare.

Sooooooo it’s better to talk to God about someone than to talk to someone about God; praying God will enlighten them or you or me or us or whomever needs to see things from His perspective as enfleshed in Jesus and explained in Holy Scripture.

While it comes as a shock to Democrats, Republicans, and other arrogantly self-righteous religions, David is right: “The earth and everything in it belong to the Lord.”

That’s why psalms are so helpful.

They are songs of prayer and praise that usher us into God’s presence; increasing our intimacy with Him so much that we begin to say as we experience with the apostle, “It is no longer I who live but it is Jesus living in and through me.”

Singing and praying the psalms enable an intimacy with God that supernaturally helps us to overcome our natural distancing from God so that we begin to understand His mind and will on everyone and everything; or as David explained what happens in worship: “God inhabits the praises of His people.”

Intimacy with God informs our knowledge of His mind and will and inspires the wisdom to trust and obey Him in all things at all times in all places with all people.

Psalm 1 draws the existential distinctions with eternal consequences between those who are intimate with God and those who are not.

“How happy is the man who does not follow the advice of the wicked, or take the path of sinners, or join a group of mockers!  Instead his delight is in the Lord’s instruction, and he meditates on it day and night.”

An intimate relationship with Jesus not a religion about Jesus is the recipe for, as Oswald Chambers put it, “strong calm sanity.”

When we are tight with God, we don’t unravel amid the meanness, madness, misery, and miscreance of life in the modern world.

Rooted in the Word – enfleshed in Jesus and explained in Holy Scripture – we are not upset or upended by life’s circumstances.

Rather than our happiness depending upon favorable circumstances, it is the supernatural product of getting closer and staying close to our Lord.

That intimacy/closeness is fueled by “delighting” in Biblical revelation and meditating continually on it: focusing on the Word and filtering thoughts, words, and actions through the Word.  It means ”chewing on” or “wrapping ourselves around” the Word; or as Eugene Peterson explained, “It is more like sucking on a lozenge than gulping down a meal.”

The result is personal peace no matter who, what, where, when, or why; being “like a tree planted beside streams of water…whose leaf does not wither…deeply rooted…strong…stable…solid…prosperous.”

Conversely, distance from God is unstable, risky, and impoverishing: “The wicked, those not intimate with God, are like chaff that the wind blows away…ruinous.”

Jesus provided an unforgettable metaphor to contrast the safety and security of intimacy with Him from the lethal dysfunctions of distancing from Him: “Everyone who hears these words of Mine and acts on them will be like a sensible man who built his house on the rock.  The rain fell, the rivers rose, and the winds blew and pounded that house.  Yet it didn’t collapse, because its foundation was on the rock.  But everyone who hears these words of Mine and doesn’t act on them will be like a foolish man who built his house on the sand.  The rain fell, the rivers rose, and the winds blew and pounded that house, and it collapsed.  And its collapse was great!”

So the message is simple.

Stay stuck on God and we won’t drown in life’s challenges.

Stay stuck on God and be assured of the heavenly after the earthly.

In short, stay stuck on God and be saved.

Brother Daniel, a Trappist monk at Assumption Abbey in Ava, Missouri, comes to mind.

He packaged incense.

One day at the monastery, I noticed he had his Bible opened to Psalm 91 which is one of my favorites.

Knowing Brother Daniel had barely made it through 8th grade and I had studied the psalm in Hebrew under some of the greatest scholars in the world and even been to Israel on many occasions where it first showed up, I thought I would enlighten the undereducated monk.

As I talked, he was thoroughly underwhelmed.

When I asked what the psalm meant to him, the heavens opened and I began to understand the psalm in ways never before understood or entertained.

Startled by this simple monk’s superior to supernatural understanding of the psalm, I asked how he knew so much more about it than me with all of my educational benefits.

He said, “I asked God what it means.”

It was then that I understood the caution extended to me as a seminarian by John Robertson who was pastor of Belvidere, New Jersey’s First Presbyterian Church: “Don’t separate yourself from God by degrees.”

I think of a favorite story.

A Texan was visiting Princeton.  He asked a young student, “Excuse me, son, where’s the library at?”  The student sniffed and snipped, “A Princeton man would never end a sentence with a preposition.”  “Excuse me, son,” the Texan persisted, “where’s the library at, jerk!”

Happiness, wholeness, security, joy, peace, serenity, calm, sanity – whatever words that come to mind to describe how we’d like to be – are generated exclusively, absolutely, existentially, and eternally by one Source, Sovereign, Starter, Savior, and Sustainer: God the Father, Son, and Holy Spirit.

That’s Psalm 1’s message.

Happiness is the supernatural product of intimacy with God.

Jesus put Him this way: “Seek first the Kingdom of God and His righteousness, and all these things will be provided for you.”

Of course, you can lead a horse to water but can’t…

Talking to some people about God seems like such a waste of time; and, sometimes, it is because they just won’t listen.

They’re the bad soil that Jesus warned us about.

That’s why it’s sometimes better to talk to God about someone than to talk to someone about God.

Actually, when we think about it, either way is good; because in the meantime and in the end, salvation only comes by staying stuck on Him.


@#$%

Blessings and Love!

@#$%


Shatter the sound of silence!

Wake up!  Look up!  Stand up!  Speak up!  Act up for Jesus!

Salt!  Shine!  Leavenate!

@#$%


@#$%

Thursday, April 5, 2018

Cigar Snobs Alert from the Back Porch

Kopp Disclosure
(John 3:19-21)

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Subject: Cigar Snobs Alert from the Back Porch (16)

Etiquette.

Some people are just ignorant.

You know what I mean.

The train of common sense and courtesies has left the station and they ain't on it.

Victims of poor potty training or just being a few fries short of a happy meal or something, they're easy to spot because they're so dang, uh, ignorant.

They don't take off their hats in restaurants, please and thank you aren't in their vocabs, the ladies before gentlemen ethic is as alien to them as appeal when it comes to Joy Behar, and they belch, fart, and pick their noses in public.

Then there's cellular harassment.

Talk about ignorant buttwads.

At a recent funeral in our church, cellulars went off several times and interrupted the service.

Parenthetically, the miscreants were former members of the church who giggled when their opiod substitutes went off which reminded me that they were/are so ignorant that I had to take the church away from them and give it back to Jesus because they are so dang, uh, ignorant.

Really, the family and friends of the dearly departed don't want to hear somebody's ringtone of "Goodbye, Earl!" or "This is the End" or "Sweet Home Alabama" during a reading of Psalm 23; and it's rather gauche to hear "Send in the Clowns" or "Why Don't We Do It In the Road" or "Let's Give Them Something to Talk About" during weddings; though I can just see behind the smiles of some brides as they're singing to themselves in remembrance of "romance" that often ends during vows at the steps of the chancel, "This will be the last time.  This will be the last time.  May be the last time I don't know..."

That last quote is from the Stones if you're ignorant.

Really, being ignorant doesn't mean you're going to hell.  It just means you bring a lot of it into the lives of those around you and you should dust it off and memorize Matthew 7:12.

So here are a few tips on etiquette for cigar snobs like us.

1. Don't smoke in a cage with the windows up unless you didn't want to take your spouse along in the first place.

2. Only really, really, really cheap SOBs bring their own fumas into cigar lounges and light 'em up without dropping a dime in the shop.

3. Unless you don't mind a condescending cigar snob thinking you're Anderson Cooper's new boy toy, hold your cigar between your index finger and thumb and not between your index finger and middle finger. 

4. If you bite off the end of your favorite fuma in front of Anderson Cooper, you may get a puff if you know what I mean; pero everybody else will think you're about as cultured and clean as Miley Cyrus or Ashley Judd.

5. Don't Monica Lewinsky your cigar.  That may be fine on a date but looks gross on the back porch and freaks out Pauline and Freudian influenced guys.

6. Cigar holders are like condoms.  They may work but slow and cut down on the pleasure.

7. Don't crush and mutilate your fuma in an ashtray when you're done.  Just let it die a natural death...like republican democracy and churches in America.

8. Unless you've got enough for everybody, don't say you're about to ignite a Cuban Cuban.  It's like saying you're gettin' some when you know your buds ain't and you force 'em to break the 10th.

9. Even if you think it's a turd, don't say it's a turd while someone is smokin' one and appearin' to like it or gave it to you.

10. Gentlemen give cigars as gifts and always bring enough to share.  I was going to say something about the late 60s and 70s pero,,,

11. If it ain't yours, don't stick it up your nose like a crack head or anything related to #5.

12. Scorning the taste buds of somebody else is like comparing your spouse to...

Yeah, I've read Emily Post and she has a lot of good things to say about a lot of stupid stuff; like, you know, how to conduct yourself in a restaurant and eat like a fag.  BTW, if you look at pictures of her and read about her life with any telepathy, you'll swear her children prove the virgin birth of Jesus.

Anyway, Churchill may have said it best about etiquette: "The best argument against democracy is a five minute conversation with the average voter."

Selah.

----- Original Message -----
From: Bob Kopp
Sent: Friday, March 02, 2018 9:01 AM
Subject: Cigar Snobs Alert from the Back Porch (15)


Preface before poll.

Postponing.

Because I preside at so many funerals, I'm not into postponing.

Moretheless, while I've always thought February is the invention of poneros, especially after reading Revelation 42:66, my upper-octogenarian dad recently caught my attention when I was bantering and moaning about this annually wretched mistake in creation and wishing it were over: "Son, enjoy every day because you never know..."

Ouch.

Someday everybody will return from the funeral but you or me.

Gulp.

So I'm not into postponing.

Counseling one of the few peers left if you know what I mean, he asked what I do to relax.

He knows I never take a day off unless I'm out of town and rarely work under...

I told him that it used to be...

Then I recalled Twain who said he preferred cigars to...because they last longer and don't talk back.

Anyway, I talked about OBEs in worship and prayer, visiting family in Pennsylvania, listening to my sons and wife more than less, playing 9 with Billy, riding Return2 with my brothers, driving a truck for the short or long haul, and combusting fumas with...

Psst.

I've counseled some wives who complain about their husbands who take regular visits to Cuba; and I've said it's because they haven't taken enough trips with 'em to the tune of Solomon's song with added lyrics by the aforementioned Twain.

So here's the poll.

If an angel or its boss told you that the roll had been called up yonder pour vous, what would be resting between your index finger and thumb on the back porch?

Etiquette?

Yeah, I'll get to it; though I will be talking about "Common Courtesies" via Matthew 7:12 on Sunday at 7:20 or 9:50 in the sanctuary or via www.bnnsradio.com

Adios!

----- Original Message -----
From: Bob Kopp
Sent: Monday, February 05, 2018 11:59 AM
Subject: Cigar Snobs Alert from the Back Porch (14)


I was going to write about etiquette; but then I watched CNN, NBC, MSNBC, ABC, Fox, and CBS juxtaposed to some print rags after Trump's State of the Union and figured I'd be too tempted to say some really naughty things about Nancy, Charles, Anderson, Rachel, Chris, Maxine, Frederico, Turbin, John, Jeff, and...

Really, are they the poster children for @#$%holes or what?

What did Trump call those ungrateful-filthy-rich-for-playing-kids'-games guys who wouldn't stand for the national anthem?

Reminds me of our social-engineering antagonists who inspire recollection of a conversation between two famous shrinks who would recommend committal for 'em all.

While watching Freud smoke a fat one, Jung chirped, "Sigmund, you've said cigars are phallic symbols."

Freud: "You're right; but they're also cigars."

Parenthetically, ask yourself, "Who reminds you more of our founding mothers and fathers?  44 or 45?"

Ever read about 'em?

Ever read 'em?

You'll discover 45 not 44 or 43 or 42 or 41 is more like Adams, Hamilton, Franklin, et al than any of those spinelessly femininized wussburgers.

Hello!

We're living in the real world with real dangers and it takes more than knowing how to lead a rap group on the South Side of Chicago to preserve life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness.

Geez.

Sorry.

Anyway, two CSs have been telling me to turn this into a subscription blog.

Hello!

Check sales for my books.

Nada.

They've also told me along with two local clergymen - and I mean exceptionally manly male clergy who really get undershepherding in the spirit of Psalm 23 and Matthew 10:16 and wonder what the anything but heaven is happening to the BSA and its previous commitment to manly men transforming boys into men, disciples, and citizens - that I should start selling my cooked Parodi Kings (about 4+ inches with somewhere around 34 ring gauge).

Really, think about it.

I can't even generate enough dinero to dump Buddha for a 150.

Do you know how many fumas that I'd have to sell to, uh, almost anything?

That's why I assume the gentleman's approach to my cooked babies.

I present them as gifts; but more on that when I get to etiquette if not still POed at the idiots in the DNC, GOP, print and screen media.

First things first.

Confession.

You saw my 2017 ratings (12).

If not or you don't remember, scroll down and note the last few words: "...and my go-to-cook-my-own B&B-infused Parodi..."

No one puts out better cigars as cost-effectively as the Avanti Cigar Company of Scranton, Pennsylvania.

Anyone who has ever lit a Parodi knows what I'm talking about and everyone who has been blessed with my very own infused recipe has asked for more and even offered to pay bigger $ for 'em.

While I like an occasional Drew Estate infused fuma, I'm not really into candy canes and neither are my closest CSs; however, all of 'em covet more of my babies.

Parenthetically, let me tell you about Avanti.

I grew up in NE Pennsylvania and started smoking Parodi cigars when I was 19 without even knowing they have been the favorites of iconic puffers like Frank Sinatra and Francis Ford Coppola with the former heralding, "There are those who like the fresh outdoors; but give me a room filled with Parodi smoke!"

Avanti has been blending the best little 100% U.S. selected tobacco sticks since 1901 - an important or thereabouts date to H-D idolaters - when Dominic Anthony and Frank Suraci came from Italy to set up shop in Scranton and birth a legend.

Treat yourself to a trip through a big part of fuma history along with a review of their selections and an introduction to their unique process as the only producer of dry-cured cigars in America using only American-grown tobacco from Kentucky and Tennessee by clicking on www.avanticigar.com.  I think you can order directly from customerservice@avanticigar.com or, at least, you'll hear about pushers near vous.

Getting back to my coveted babies, there are many ways to infuse a cigar.

Some just get a cookie sheet, dump some turds on it for some kinda reincarnation, pour their favorite booze on 'em, stack 'em in a plastic container or stuff 'em in a freezer bag, let 'em sit until they're not dripping or too damp, and light 'em up.

Others take decent but not pricey stogies, dip or drip or dab or douse or dunk 'em, stack 'em or stuff 'em, let 'em sit until they're not dripping or damp, and light 'em up.

Yo?

I go to the mothership in Scranton or Smokin' Joe's Tobacco in Wilkes-Barre when visiting the upper octogenarians, pick up 50+ for under 50, dip each end in B&B, stack 'em in a Tupperware rectangular, put a healthy shot in with 'em, let 'em sit for about three months or until every drop of the precious nectar is absorbed by the fumas, and then play gentleman and pass 'em out...while, of course, penultimately passing them through my personal quality control chef (moi).

BTW, I smoked ___'s of Parodis long before I infused 'em and they're much better than most other higher priced cigars au naturale.

Yet, if some brothers are right and I think they are 'cause I agree with 'em, my recipe takes 'em to the next level.

So, as Walter White would say, "Let's cook!"

Now that I'm feeling better and can't wait to get to the back porch and crack open that Tupperware later today, yeah, maybe etiquette next time.

----- Original Message -----
From: Bob Kopp
Sent: Thursday, January 25, 2018 8:33 AM
Subject: Cigar Snobs Alert from the Back Porch (13)


Obviously, you're among a selected few if you're getting these CSABPs; and I hope you forward 'em to those who appreciate the culture with some sneaky theology between the lines.

I've been asked how I can be so, uh, candid, confessional, confrontational, challenging, iconoclastic, snippy, snotty, and...

While I'm always eager to be corrected by Jesus, Holy Scripture, and common sense - Even about the fumas! - I also hope you never doubt my agape that I pray and labor to express through grace, mercy, forgiveness, and reconciling ambition.

Actually, once you've piled up as many pension credits as I have, it's really quite easy to reverse Bob Seger's chronology: "So you're a little bit older and a lot less bolder than you used to be!"

When you've got as many pension credits piled up as I do, there's not much that ecclesiastical superiors, inferiors, subordinates, and other dolts can do to you.

Finally, I can really live how I counsel young pastors and just about anybody else: "You're damned if you do and damned if you don't.  How liberating!  If you're damned if you and damned if you don't, you may as well do what you heaven well think is the right thing to do according to Jesus by the book!"

On the local scene, because retirement is for people who hate their vocations or aren't able to do it anymore for emotional or physical challenges and make people around them as miserable as they are becoming, I'd have no problems turning in the keys if the church wanted somebody else with a warning that, for the most part with exceptions to the rule that I wrote about in the most current www.koppdisclosure.com, millennials, GenXers, and most baby boomers have the work ethic of blood hounds.  I put in at least 70 hours a week; and though I know I will never meet the unrealistic expectations of some for a BFF, champion, paramour, liberal/conservative bigot, or whatever the anything but heaven's on their minds, yeah, go ahead if you think you can find someone who will love and care for you better than moi.

That's not arrogant.

That's fact.

Of course, never take on the church kitchen ladies.

I keep telling young pastors and male members/staff/officers to be careful with 'em.

Yeah, they talk too much and have hyper-control needs and have this my-way-or-the-highway attitude about 'em; but they work harder than the men in the church, always get things done, and pay the bills.  Besides, you don't have to argue with them about much because they're always arguing among themselves.

So if you're still reading, let me tell you something else about our snobby culture.

It's mostly a guy thing; but there are exceptions.

Really, you gotta read the current post on www.koppdisclosure.com.

CSABPs are mostly for manly men and those very, very, very few and decreasing #s of American women who still want manly men in the chair, between the sheets, and in the lead rather than, uh, guys like Obama, Anderson, Mitch, Lindsey, Joe, Chris, Michael, Marilyn Manson, and...

You know what I'm talking about; and if you don't, you've been smoking more than fumas or overdosed on PC Kool-Aid.

So here's a CSABP truism for CSs who can handle the truth with the colonel.

While there are female posers on iron ponies and collared women in pulpits and hotties or notties lighting up stogies to make whatever kinda Helen Reddy or Ashley Judd statement that's igniting 'em, never underestimate the authentic women on bikes, in robes, and settlin' in with a favorite fuma.

And, psst, let's be honest.

When you've got a woman who is authentically riding and waxing and puffing and..., it's, uh, gulp, sigh, be careful, don't say anything right now as the pendulum goes way left, uh,...really...sexy.

Speaking of the Cigar Vixen...

BTW, posers aren't gender distinctive.

Both got 'em.


This may seem a little ironic right now, but I think the next alert will be about etiquette.

----- Original Message -----
From: Bob Kopp
Sent: Monday, January 22, 2018 12:38 PM
Subject: Cigar Snobs Alert from the Back Porch (12)

Life is too short to smoke turds.

So let's talk about ratings.

Like women, fumas come in all shapes and sizes and colors and emotives; but the most important thing is taste.

Uh, like women, uh, gauge, length, binder or wrapper or filler origins, or, uh, even price don't matter as much as, uh, the, uh, satisfaction of the experience.

Probably the most sophisticated rating system has been developed by CA; and though I really, really, really like the rag, sometimes its ratings are subjectively if not suspiciously related to their advertisers.

It's like some churches.

Bigger givers get more attention.

It's the truth.

Ergo, let's give a pass to CA.

Still, let's start with another truism.

Your treasure may be somebody else's turd and vice versa.

For example, there's only one RP that I like and I really, really, really like it: Special Reserve Sun Grown Maduro.

The rest of 'em, in my estimation disputed even by my friends, are overrated.

Be that as it is, here's how I rate my fumas:

1. Money is not a factor!  I've smoked some really expensive pieces of ___ and I've smoked some really inexpensive sticks that are consistently satisfying.  If you let money dictate your preferences, it means you're as superficial as Christian posers who think fancy buildings, big endowments, preachers with worthless degrees and finely adorned vestments with appointed/accentuated stripes, and other idolatries somehow equate to authenticity, substance, and satisfaction;

2. While I have never smoked anything better than a Cohiba Behike and covet a Partagas Lusitania, give me any Padron over any Cuban Punch or anything exported by Villager.  In other words, Habana Cuba on the band doesn't guarantee an orgasmic oasis;

3. While fumas smoke in thirds with each being a little to distinctly different from the preceding or following, I have given up on any of 'em that aren't totally satisfactory because I'm not into any part of my life being 30% turd;

4. Though some of my favorites require massaging and an occasional hook, pick, or drill, I prefer a full and easy draw with an even burn and get PO'ed if I have to keep reaching for ignition;

5. I've never been inclined to masochism, sadism, or auto-suggestion; meaning if it doesn't taste good in my mouth, through my nose, and when I'm twirling it with my tongue, it's outta here;

6. Ever sit next to someone with BO?  Ever have someone come forward for the sacrament with bad breath?  Ever visit an 8th grade lockerroom?  Ever been to Fisherman's Wharf?  If I can't get past the smell, I ain't gonna put it in my mouth or take a swipe at it with my tongue;

7. If you like it, who cares about the ash?  I know some folks have fetishes about ashes.  Not me.  Some folks say a white ash is better than a grey or brown ash.  Not me.  It's all about taste and satisfaction;

8. However, if you see white powder on your fuma before ignition, chill out.  It's O.K. It's plume or the excretion of tobacco oils.  Wipe it off and light'er up.  Note Bene!  If you see a bluish stain or coloring on it, not even a condom will protect you.  Stay away from it!  It's mold!  Sometimes even something that's seductive is riddled with disease;

9. Big veins or little veins don't matter either.  It's about performance;

10. Tightly packed or loosely packed or burning too hot or not hot enough or burning too fast or not fast enough or...  See the conclusion in #9;

11. Appearance and feel and...  See the conclusion in #9; and

12. Do you want to smoke it again and again and again?  That's the real test for me; and if I do, it gets a high rating and regular hook-ups.

I guess rating cigars is like rating lots of things.

Again, CA has the most sophisticated points system in my experience based on four categories: appearance/construction (15), smoking characteristics (25), flavor (25), and overall impression (35); yet, really, it's still a pretty subjective system.

If I want to avoid wasting too much money when I pull out the catalogue and start coveting, I'll ask friends about their experiences; and, occasionally, I'll go to the net and watch reviews by Cigar Obsession and Cigar Vixen with the latter being especially, uh, convincing as well as compelling.  Their palates are far more discriminating than mine and I've rarely been led astray by them; though, again, the latter has moments.

Bottom line.

There's no sure way to be sure about a Cuban unless you try it out.

Content not cover.

But it's personal.

Some prefer...

Others prefer...

Some say potato, some say...

Smoke around.

Then rate 'em for yourself.

BTW, here are my always evolving top five favs for 2017 without reference to the Cohiba Behike or Partagas Lusitania that I can't afford anyway:

1. Any Padron
2. Camacho Legendaria Bertha
3. Montecristo Reserva Negra
4. Macanudo Inspirado Black
5. Rocky Patel Special Reserve Sun Grown Maduro

Alec Bradley Lost Art almost bumped #5 after just one stick and, surprisingly, the astonishingly affordable new Baccarat Belicoso Maduro is gaining ground, and my go-to-cook-my-own B&B-infused Parodi is light on the wallet and heavy on the buds.

Flame on!

----- Original Message -----
From: Bob Kopp
Sent: Saturday, January 13, 2018 7:38 AM
Subject: Cigar Snobs Alert from the Back Porch (11)


If you haven't read "If You Are/Know A Cigar Snob" or have but are bummed out at the prospects of Oprah actually becoming P in 2020 and the subsequent outlawing of fumas as the social engineers return to power and you need some refreshment - Me too! - just go to the 12/15/17 edition of www.koppdisclosure.com, go to the right column (Blog Archive), and click 'er on.

Uh, no, change that!

Don't click 'er on...or you'll be accused of something by someone...like one of Oprah's guests.

I don't know about you but those Ashley, Gloria, and Taylor chicks really don't turn me on; unless, maybe, I was on a deserted island for 20 years without my wife.

BTW, have you seen those photos of Oprah making out with Harvey Weinstein?

I remember studying upokrisis (transliteration of Greek word for hypocrisy) while working for some worthless degree and...

Anyway, great videos in that edition for cigar snobs like us.

Can't understand why the best website for news impacting modern ministry - www.churchandworld.com - didn't carry that one because there was a lot of sneaky theology/ecclesiology/venting in there like the last one on annual reports.

I'm starting to get the hint about my publishing prospects.

Some recent Q&A:

Illinois: "Why don't you charge for these?"  You keep asking and I keep telling you to look at my book sales.  O.K., send me some Cohiba Behikes if you're feeling guilty.

California: "I like your recent post on humidors, but what's your favorite strategy?"  Just throw in some Boveda packets!  Check out www.cheaphumidors.com!

I think the next edition will be on ratings.

I would suggest you don't share it with Oprah, Ashley, Gloria, Taylor, Anderson, Rachel, Dick, Tammy, Chris, Joe or his...

----- Original Message -----
From: Bob Kopp
Sent: Wednesday, December 27, 2017 8:31 AM
Subject: Cigar Snobs Alert from the Back Porch (10)


Humidors.

If Santa or, uh, self were good to you, you're going to need more space in the inn (Get it?) to store your new stock.

While my favorite dealer is www.thompsoncigar.com where you can always pick up a little free humidor with some box purchases, the best source/supplier for taking good care of your babies is www.cheaphumidors.com.

www.cheaphumidors.com, a fun site to check out on the dumbphone especially when caffeine ain't sufficient during those insufferable clergy, council, civic, community, school board/bored or other political assemblies, has an unmatched selection of quality and cost-effective humidors along with lots of accessories and "how to" videos for seasoning, setting up, and calibrating.

Historical parenthesis.

John Adams to Thomas Jefferson on Congress and aforementioned kinda kin meetings: "...drudgery of the most wasting, exhausting, consuming  kind."

It may be my ghetto, but I think so many clergy break the big ten's 1-3 and 7 because it's hard for the libido not to wander during such mindless chatter from the ozone layer of reality with two feet planted firmly in the air.

Anyway, if you're like me and stockpiling fumas with ammo, H2O, and food in prep for the imminent eschaton, you're going to need a bigger humidor for favs and at least one more to host those candy canes so your favs aren't unequally yoked.

Uh, oh, yeah,...humidors.

A humidor is a box to store fumas in a tropical climate.

While snobs like us prefer cedar wood, plastic, plexiglas, freezer bags, or Tupperware and relatives will work as long as they're sealed and have humidifying elements inside to maintain freshness and flavor; and, again, www.cheaphumidors.com has the best options on that with a video explaining the pros and cons of each.

70/70 is the easiest math.

You want to keep your babies cozy at 70 degrees temp and 70% relative humidity.

Of course, like palates when it comes to ratings, you will find as much diversity on the math as H-D techs provide for iron pony shoe air pressure.

While most folks say 65-75 is the range for relative humidity, CA says 65-70 while I've always preferred 69.

Noting www.cheaphumidors.com has a great selection of hygrometers to gauge relative humidity - I don't trust those inaccurate and hard to calibrate boogers that come attached to most boxes - you can buy 'em at most hardware stores; but go to www.cheaphumidors.com first FYI.

Getting back to humidifying elements, everybody has their prejudices from Boveda packs to crystals to humidity beads, humidor sticks, floral foam in those cheap plastic containers that come with most humidors or found in funeral home and church chancel vases, or just sticking a shot glass of distilled water in the box while making sure that you don't piss on your puppies because you never dampen directly unless you've got a turd and will try anything to make it worth ignition.

Daily monitoring is the best and I use a combination of all kinda elements to keep 'em at my preferred math; and when I dip below or drip over the range, it's a kairos moment to take 'em all out, reshuffle, inspect, detect, and let 'em breathe a bit.

Traveling is no problem; and whether using a nifty travel case that you've picked up from www.cheaphumidors.com or just stuck 'em in a freezer bag, Boveda packs are the most convenient and safest as elements and fumas should never touch regardless of previous permission as it will scream harassment sooner or later.

In a pinch while traveling, just moisten a paper towel or piece of sponge or floral foam, put it in a smaller bag without sealing it, and stick 'er in.

Prophylactics prevent disease.

Speaking of pinches, I still like the "pinch test" when checking a shipment, buying from one of those retail joints, or checking to see if my humidor is O.K.

Here's how to do that.

Placing the fuma between your thumb and index finger, press slightly.

If it's Jethro Tullian thick/stiff as a brick, it may be good for Hillary's husband yet dry and stale aka dehydrated.  You can try to bring it back to life.  Good luck!  And being that Calvinists don't believe in luck, you've learned a valuable lesson.

If it's got soft spongy spots, it's pret' near as useless and impotent as 41-44.

Here's the deal.

If you take care of 'em, they'll take care of you.

The life of a cigar is indefinite as long as it's stored properly.

Heaven, there are pre-Fidelians around to die for.

While you should never end a sentence with a preposition, you should never leave a cigar unattended.

Caressed cigars smoke.

----- Original Message -----
From: Bob Kopp
Sent: Friday, December 15, 2017 7:21 AM
Subject: Cigar Snobs Alert from the Back Porch (9)


First feedback edition.

Before I get to that, I was introduced to Cuban fumas back in the early 70s while studying in Heidelberg.

No embargo.

Well, I'd almost forgotten how much I liked 'em as I bought into the self-gratifying-market-deluding sentiment that transplanted seeds into foreign soils across the water from the island have resulted in fumas as good as and sometimes even better than Cuba's most renowned export apart from liberation theology.

It's kinda like saying, "I just bought a new artificial plastic evergreen with real Christmas spirit because I'm tired of taking Lassie out to look for a tree."

O.K., maybe, occasionally, rarely close...but no, uh, cigar.

Sorry.

It's kinda like saying, 'Yeah, those New Jersey Vidalia onions are just as good as the ones from Georgia."

Not!

Anyway, my favorite-mayor-of-all-time gave a Cohiba Behike 56 to me for Christmas and I had an OBE with it on the way back from UW Hospital Madison on Tuesday night.

Burned my fingers to the nails!

The word awesome just doesn't quite capture the transcendence.

Don Norek - go to the archives of www.koppdisclosure.com to read up on one of my continuing heroes - would treat me to a Cuban Cuban every once in a while; so I wasn't completely out of the loop pero that was infrequent because he'd also pawn off clones to moi with a wink.  Sooooooo if you can get your hands and spirit on one of those pre-et-post Castro babies, indulge!

O.K., some feedback.

Pennsylvania: On dealing with aftertaste if you're fortunate enough to have someone who wants to stick her/his tongue down your throat: "Bourbon mouthwash - preferably 101 or higher."  BC, Digger, and Judge have said the same thing to me.

Illinois: "You're killing me, man!  And I can't believe you are giving these away!"  Nice.  Appreciate it.  But have you seen my book sales?  In one of the most humiliating experiences of my life, I'm running behind the toothy guy from Texas in sales by about ten trillion to one.  Wouldn't mind a nod from Thompson but not holding my breath except for a Cohiba Behike 56.

Pennsylvania: "Why don't you start a website like your other one?"  Because webmaster Kathie is kind enough with www.koppdisclosure.com and I don't know if this string is too, uh, masculine for, uh, broader appeal.  I mean, really, I think some of the things that you like about CSAFTBP would get you into trouble if you ever uttered 'em in front of what, I guess, according to professors and papers and journalists and sissy clerics and other politicians marching to the beat of Gloria's tambourine, is the much more fragile of the genders.  Notice I said genders.  From what I hear from mainline ecclesiastical franchises and the ACLU, God remains wrong.  There are a lot more than two. 

Missouri: "I've been forwarding these to friends.  Is that O.K.?" Sure. With my fan base, beggars can't be choosers; but if you have 'em, send their e-mail addresses to me and I'll put 'em on the first edition mailing list and they won't have to trust your discretion.  Uh, wait a second.  I'll probably be accused of some kinda harassment if I send them unsolicited.  It's happened with www.koppdisclosure.com as cupcakes and snowflakes can't handle Jessup's assumption.  So have them send their addresses to me and I'll hook 'em up.  But, again, forward away!  Hey, send some to Thompson and CA but not Megyn Kelly or doe-eyed Rachel Maddog.

South Dakota: "How often are you going to send these out?  I really like them.  They're better than the serious things that you write."  Great.  Just great.  Maybe that's why my denomination won't let me speak at their self-gratifying biennials.  Not surprised.  Peterson, Bright, Ogilvie, Evans, Larson, Lovelace, Gagnon, Legvold, and...weren't 'good' enough for 'em.  I wonder if Calvin or Farel or Luther or Bullinger or Barth or Bonhoeffer or even Paul or John or even... Per your interrogative, when I feel like it; which usually happens when I'm tired of babysitting, refereeing, officiating, pontificating, deliberating, consoling, consulting, defecating, inspecting, injecting, detecting, or cleaning the restrooms and collecting the trash while we wait for our new custodian to start.

Alabama: "I was offended by your insinuations about Alabama in the last edition."  Join the club.  I live for that.  Salt.  Light.  Leaven.  Get it?  You need to talk to my dad to figure out what I'm trying to say.  After I voted for McGovern, he said, "Son, now I know I don't have to worry about you.  You don't need drugs!"  Speaking of Ps, my favorites are 1, 16, 35, and 40 with JFK being the best because he had much better taste in, uh, uh, uh, fumas than even, uh, uh, uh, Bubba who can be excused because of being married to you know who and, most important, 35 had the common sense to stock up on authentic Upmanns when he had the chance which, of course, he did because he knew when he was going to make sure that proletarians like moi had to study in Germany to get 'em.  BTW, will someone puhhhlease teach Maxine how to pronounce 45?  She reminds me of the chick who kept talking about "Eric Clapner. I like Eric Clapner."

O.K., that's it for the first feedback edition.

If Santa is kinder to me than he's been to Alabama, you should get the next edition before the 1st.

Merry Christmas!

It is about Jesus, uh, you used to know, uh, no matter what your local school board or Rahm says.

BTW, Rahm?

Does that guy have no shame or what?

Him criticizing anyone anywhere about anything related to leadership is like me telling my favorite/personal mechanic Jason how to fix the truck that I don't have.

----- Original Message -----
From: Bob Kopp
Sent: Wednesday, December 13, 2017 2:56 PM
Subject: Cigar Snobs Alert from the Back Porch (8)


Dear Santa,

Why did you put coal in Alabama's stocking?

You didn't give much of a choice to them - creep or crook.

I would have thought you'd learned something from the last candidates for POTUS.

The guy who won can't keep his hands off, uh, uh, uh, Twitter and the, uh, whazzzzzzztheword, uh, uh, oh, yeah, gal who lost is the antidote for sexual harassment.

Alabama was worse - sissy or Allen/Brooks phallic symbol.

I guess we'll see.

Too bad.

Anyway, if you're not going to come through with a Ford 150 or big plastic card to Woodstock Harley-Davidson or Marengo Guns or box of favorite fumas, please hold off on anything related to Crimson Ridge, A&F, Ulta, Bath and Body Works, Megyn Kelly, or any of those restaurants hawking rabbit food for anorexics.

No books about either Obama; though any book by Chernow, Metaxas, or Vonnegut that I haven't read is cool.

I don't want any more evolved gravy rags aka ties.  Medieval.  Really, think about it.  They look stupid.  Yeah, I know some women like 'em because they're so tight around our necks and encourage that Janis Joplin song about balls and chains and soccer moms like gayish guys more than manish ones with closely/neatly cropped facial hair; but I don't wear 'em that much anymore and may have even forgotten how to get that bourgeoisified dimple in there to satisfy the fashion police.

No subscriptions, please, to news magazines or papers.  I'm so tired of the man-hater columnists who flatter themselves into thinking anyone would want to harass 'em and, while I'm no Trumper because the Christian in me ain't into idolatries unless it's a real Partagas or Punch or Cohiba from Cuba , the Freudian in me suspects guys like Robinson, Anderson, Joe, John, anyone at the NYTs and WP and Time and Newsweek and MSNBC and most local rags, et.al. have insatiable man-crushes on him.

Really, isn't that what's fashionable in America these days?

It slays me to admit this; but maybe that's among the myriad of maddening reasons why Muslims like America about as much as bacon-topped pork tenderloins.

I can buy my own underwear and socks.

I eat too much as it is.

Gas?

I've got enough of that.

If You're not coming up with one of those Animal House "Thank You, God!" serendipities, how about a Mary moment in the true spirit of the season: "And Mary kept all these things; pondering them in her heart"?

Yeah, I'd like that.

I'd just like time to sit on the back porch and think about Jesus and who He is and what He has done for us and our salvation by grace through faith.

That's really enough for me.

Time off and alone with Jesus.

Of course, if you've got an extra Partagas Lusitania and bottle of B&B in that sack while I'm sitting on the...

----- Original Message -----
From: Bob Kopp
Sent: Sunday, December 10, 2017 11:47 AM
Subject: Cigar Snobs Alert from the Back Porch (7)


Fuma aftertaste is not bad breath.

Pero, of course, that may be hard to explain to somebody who just stuck her...uh, whoa, geez, gulp, gasp, sigh, uh, uh, uh...or his tongue in your mouth.

Frankly, after too much marital and post-marital psychospiritualtherapy for too long, I've reached the conclusion that the challenge cited in the previous sentence-paragraph is about as common as veracity in government, media, education, entertainment, jurisprudence, and, alas, too many churches where it seems too many pulpiteers and pewsitters have forgotten Christianity is about, uh, Jesus.

Be that as it is, there are exceptions to the rule; and while exceptions to the rule are called exceptions to the rule because they occur so infrequently that they are called exceptions to the rule, I will assume there are some cigar snobs who know somebody who wants to stick her/his tongue in their mouths without dealing with an aftertaste that they not us find repugnant.

Parenthetically, one of the graces for cigar snobs like us of not having anyone interested in sticking her/his tongue in our mouths is savoring the aftertaste of a righteous fuma.

Pero, again, if you do have somebody who wants to stick her/his tongue in your mouth apr├Ęs a fuma but doesn't like the aftertaste and you want to do something about it so she/he will stick her/his tongue in your mouth, here are some suggestions.

Garlic works yet presents a whole set of new challenges.

Hydrogen peroxide kinda works; and it's cheap with the down side being bleaching tongue hairs.

Gum, mints, parsley, lemons, oranges, cranberries, kiwi, marshmallow chicks, chunky peanut butter, gross smelling cheeses, and tablespoons of sugar kinda work but lose their effectiveness as quickly as monologues by Rachel, Anderson, Nancy, Chelsea, or Sean.

Flossing kinda helps.

Baking soda, in my opinion, is kinda the best; as long as you brush the roof of your mouth, gums, tongue, under the tongue, inside the cheeks, teeth, down your throat, tonsils if still hanging in, and everywhere else within reach.  Then gargle!

Notice I qualified each suggestion with kinda.

The preceding hypothetical solutions only minimize aftertaste.

The only way to eliminate aftertaste is to do lots of the above, shower, and sleep it off; knowing cigar snobs will start all over again in a few hours after the alarm sounds.

Truth is a righteous fuma leaves an aftertaste that cigar snobs savor while others abhor.

O.K.

So there's the choice.

Scroll down to #2 for Twain's take on that.

BTW, if you've got facial hair...

----- Original Message -----
From: Bob Kopp
Sent: Saturday, December 02, 2017 7:56 AM
Subject: Cigar Snobs Alert from the Back Porch (6)


Q: "How do you know if you've sucked down a righteous fuma?"

A: "Aside from the serene soul OBE via an oasis apart from life's meanness, madness, misery, and miscreance, your thumb, index, and middle fingers will start burning as you hold out for the last draw of the heavenly dispensation, baking soda will be put on hold, and you'll run to the can for a completely cleansing dump."

Or something like that.

It starts with lighting it.

First things first.

Dogs are bitten and cigars are clipped.

After clipping off the cap only and not slicing into the body with your favorite cutter - I like a double-bladed guillotine but carry a punch for box/square-pressed favs - there are several options for ignition.

When they're working, I prefer butane-filled lighters.  They're odorless, colorless, quick, complete, and conclusive.  Buuuuuuut notice I said I prefer them when they're working.  Coupled with shopping for fuel and fueling up and carrying around more crap than convenient, they are fickle and tend not to work on cold days which is a challenge in areas like the northern stateline of Illinois during our 7-9 months of winter.

Zippo fluid-filled lighters are the coolest.  How about that sound when you open and close 'em?  Awesome!  As long as they're filled and the flints are fresh, they're more reliable than their butane brothers.  Buuuuuuut ya gotta buy fluid and ya gotta have extra flints and lighter fluid can, on occasion if you're not careful, taint the first puff or three with the same chemical taste that ruins burgers flavored with charcoal and, uh, lighter fluid.

Paper matches work; buuuuuuut, again, they have chemical additives that sometimes sneak into the first or third draw annnnnnnd they're short and tend to burn your fingers before they light your fuma.

Wooden matches, especially for snobs like us, are the best!  Classic, consistent, not corrupted following the nano-second of combustion, cheap, and available at your nearest dollar store.

More tips.

Don't put the cigar into the flame!

With gentle puffs, draw the heat from the flame into the cigar!

It will take a few seconds longer but will result in an entire ring-size glow for a smooth and even smoke.

BTW, Thompson's December 2017 snail-mail-hard-copy-best-potty-reading-ever catalogue has one of the best deals ever for one of my standards and one about to crack the top five.  Their "Double Down" offer, pairing two premiums at discounted prices, is featuring, among many other worthy selections, a Montecristo Reserva Negra and Macanudo Inspirado Black combo for under $40.  O.K., that's $.05 under $40 yet it's a superb opportunity for cigar snobs like us.

Blessings and Love!

----- Original Message -----
From: Bob Kopp
Sent: Saturday, November 25, 2017 7:29 AM
Subject: Cigar Snobs Alert from the Back Porch (5)


Being snobs doesn't mean we have to be stupid.

That's for clergy and other politicians.

Preferences come to mind.

Preferences for cigar snobs are as diverse as detailing iron ponies for road warriors.

One man's treasure is another man's turd.

For example, have you ever smoked a CA 90+ rated stick and thought it was a White Owl?

Point is palates are diverse.

Recently, I went through it again.

Twice.

I've never been a big RP guy; but his Sun Grown Maduro ain't bad.

Then there's Macanudo.

Never been a fan.

Ever since I smoked my first in 1969, I've thought they're as overrated as the Dallas Cowboys and Notre Dame.

But then Deadeye lit up a Macanudo Inspirado White pour moi.  It's pretty mild but a quite pleasurable smoke for any time of the day.

Then, as part of my wife's anniversary gesture, Leslie talked to Thompson about my history and ordered 5 Macanudo Inspirado Blackies that leave one of the best aftertastes ever.  While I'm still saving up for another box of Padron 7000s, I may get a box of MIBs if Santa is good to me.

So don't be stupid even if you're a snob.

Don't buy unless you're convinced; but try if, uh, you know, someone springs for ya.

Never know.

Especially when it comes to that MIB.

Indulge me if 1 Corinthians 12:4-7 comes to mind.

O.K., that's a stretch.

But that's the point.

Blessings and Love!

----- Original Message -----
From: Bob Kopp
Sent: Saturday, November 18, 2017 7:44 AM
Subject: Cigar Snobs Alert from the Back Porch (4)


Because I'm a cigar snob, I've never been into clones, seconds, or kindas.

When I think of that kinda stuff, I think of metrics and Beemers and Triumphs and Victories that will never be H-Ds; or I think of self-gratification which, uh, well, uh,...never mind.

Anyway, my wife is starting to catch on; and though she hasn't bought a truck for me or stopped joining my mom on the helmet thing which Digger says has the only benefit of casket appearance, she's ordering Cubans pour moi on important occasions.

She even gets a Thompson catalogue in her own name delivered to the house!

For our recent anniversary, she got some of those new R&Js noted below along with another 5-packer that's O.K. but wasn't listed by me annnnnnnnd, after consulting with Thompson's, she got a bundle of No. 99 Factory Throwouts.

After an early morning meeting with Adam and Brian that included my "any of 'em" favorite listed below, I headed to a meeting in Davenport, Iowa to hook up with Hans of www.churchandworld.com for fraternity and forecasting.

I took along a No 99 and was stunned by a very decent smoke highlighted by a subtle sweetness not nearly as overpowering as anything from Drew Estate, easy draw (lit once), and consistent pleasure until the last inch that reminded me of some overrated RPs.

So I investigated.

While I haven't been able to figure out who's throwin' 'em out, it's a premium producer who doesn't like the "uneven coloring" on the wrapper; ergo, it doesn't pass quality control and gets thrown out for us to pick up at unreally low prices from Thompson's.

BTW, it's a Churchill and lasted for two hours...before the last inch.

It's my new lawnboy, hunter, snow bro, and maybe even occasional...

Blessings and Love!

----- Original Message -----
From: Bob Kopp
Sent: Friday, November 10, 2017 7:52 AM
Subject: Cigar Snobs Alert from the Back Porch (3)


Packed pony at Digger's yesterday.

With no more golf with Billy until the thaw, no truck, and no pony, my relaxations/refuelings are limited to cellular prayer and Cubans.

Of course, I'm not into opium dens or thick-clouded-suffocating stick lounges with unavoidable alien fragrances; ergo, I've learned to bundle up and back porch it more than less though less than three seasons.

Having, uh, vented, here are a few suggestions for winter that, in our neck of the woods, should be over in less than seven months.

Unless you're cheating on your wife - "No, honey, I don't spend more than $10 a month on Cubans and you can't believe how much money I save when ordering from Tampa!" - or screwing the IRS - they deserve it - you need some inexpensive though surprisingly tasty smokes while cutting leaves and tuning up the snowblower.

Thompson is running a great deal on one of my favorite lawnboys: Quorum Double Gordo with an Ecuador-Sumatra wrapper.  You can get a bundle of 20 for $55.80 with the added bonus of a Thompson Cigar 100th Anniversary Hat which is very cool.  Got one!  It really annoys the PC social engineering sissy leftists when you wear it at the mall and especially Barnes and Nobles or a clergy meeting.  It's a good 90 minute oasis. 

I'm not going to be distracted from my favorites (scroll down) while fulfilling honey-do stuff; but Quorum isn't bad during such times; and if your yard/driveway/whatever takes longer than 90 minutes, you can always tag on my favorite quick Cuban via Kentucky, Tennessee, and Scranton, Pennsylvania: Parodi!  They're good for 30 minutes; and especially good if I've cooked some for you with my special B&B recipe.

Remember, time your Cubans by gauge and length and brand so you don't waste 'em.

Size does matter.

One more thing.

Unless you're a total geek, forget cyberspace and call Thompson at 800-237-2559 for the best potty-reading-break-the-10th-commandment cigar catalogue on the market.

Blessings and Love!

----- Original Message -----
From: Bob Kopp
Sent: Thursday, November 09, 2017 5:47 AM
Subject: Cigar Snobs Alert from the Back Porch (2)


The FDA has determined the health risks of 1-2 cigars a day are nil.

Seriously.

RRK has determined the relaxation and fraternity benefits are incalcuably positive.

Seriously.

Twain has said a cigar lasts longer than___and no one talks back.

:)

----- Original Message -----
From: Bob Kopp
Sent: Wednesday, November 08, 2017 7:52 AM
Subject: Cigar Snobs Alert from the Back Porch


The new R&J 1875 Anniversario Maduro, available in boxes and part of Thompson's 5-Pack Fever offerings, has moved into my top 5 along with any Padron, Montecristo Reserva Negra, Punch Gran Puro Natural, and Camacho Legendaria Bertha (can't understand why Thompson doesn't carry this one as it carries all of my other favorites at spectacular prices and special care in handling/mailing).

Really, while I imbibed my first just last night, it is really, really, really off the charts in subtle tastes, easy full draw, and lasting pleasure; except, my wife said she could smell it foruhever.

Treat yourself before the eschaton!

I expect it to be my next box purchase which should occur prior to the parousia.

Blessings and Love!

@#$%

Blessings and Love!

@#$%


Shatter the sound of silence!

Wake up!  Look up!  Stand up!  Speak up!  Act up for Jesus!

Salt!  Shine!  Leavenate!

@#$%


@#$%