Saturday, February 17, 2018

Week In Review 2/16/18

Good dog, you found it!  Bad dog, you chewed it all up!
Pretty quiet week.  I lost my Fitbit last weekend, but when I was home sick on Tuesday, my chocolate lab Daisy found it in the yard--and chewed it into tiny pieces.  That's how she rolls.  I find something.  I chew it up.  So I have a new Fitbit!

I have finished the first two chapters of the new book (still untitled) including photos!  My photographer Greg Knott was in Washington D.C. last week collecting a few more photographs for the project (and attending Masonic Week).  So it's rolling right along.  I think there will be 30-40 sections in total.

In case you missed the posts this week, on Tuesday, I put on a Valentine's Day piece many of you as Masons will be able to relate to.  And Thursday's piece got a lot of attention, too.  It is called "Brotherly Love Behind the Wheel" and reminds us that when we represent ourselves as Masons to the world, like on the bumper of our car for instance, we should always be on our best behavior. 

Be sure and check out the Tuesday and Thursday posts next week, too! On Tuesday, I have a piece going up called "Freemasons On The Move" I think you'll enjoy.  And on Thursday, a piece called "Joe Creason's Kentucky"  Joe Creason was a well-known syndicated columnist in Kentucky, and I'm often asked if we are related.  He was a pretty interesting guy.

And I've updated the "News" tabs--be sure and check out my upcoming dates.

~Todd E. Creason

Thursday, February 15, 2018

Brotherly Love Behind The Wheel

The light turned yellow just in front of him. He did the right thing, stopping at the crosswalk, even though he could have beaten the red light by accelerating through the intersection.

The tailgating man behind him was furious and honked his horn, screaming at him in frustration, because he missed his chance to get through the intersection.

As he was still ranting at the car in front of him, he heard a tap on his window and looked up into the face of a very serious police officer. The officer ordered him to exit his vehicle with his hands up...

He took him to the police station where he was searched, fingerprinted, photographed, and placed in a holding cell. After a couple of hours, a policeman approached the cell and opened the door. He was escorted back to the booking desk where the arresting officer was waiting with his personal effects.

The officer said, ''I'm very sorry for the mistake. You see, I pulled up behind you while you were blowing your horn, flipping off the guy in front of you, and cussing a blue streak at him.  I noticed the Square & Compass emblem mounted on the car, the Knights Templar tail-light covers, the "2B1ASK1" bumpersticker, and the Shriner's fez in the back window, so naturally....I had assumed the vehicle was stolen.''

A few years ago, the Grand Master of Illinois said a funny thing at a dinner I was attending.  He was encouraging the Masons there to order Master Mason plates offered by the State of Illinois because a portion of the annual renewal fee supports Masonic charities.  Anyway, he said that since he'd gotten the Master Mason license plates for his car, he'd become a much more considerate driver.  Everyone laughed because they knew exactly what he was talking about. 

It's easy to become impatient behind the wheel, especially around the holidays when everyone seems to be in such a hurry.  But remember what your car says about you, and more importantly, what your behavior says about those things you choose to display on your bumper.  Many of us use our bumpers to express those things that are important to us--organizations we belong to, what church we attend, and even our political leanings.  If you decide to do that, make sure you're a good example of what those organizations and symbols represent. 

If you're an angry driver, maybe you're not the best person to advertise . . . you know?

~Todd E. Creason

P.S. Master Mason plates are offered by quite a few states, and they work much the same everywhere--they cost a little more, but a portion of the annual registration fee supports the charitable causes supported by your Grand Lodge.  Check with your Secretary of State to see if Master Mason plates are available in your state.

Tuesday, February 13, 2018

Valentine's Day M.I.A.

"My most brilliant achievement was my ability to be able to persuade my wife to marry me."

~Winston Churchill
Studholme Lodge No. 1591, England

When I petitioned my Lodge back in 2004, my wife was concerned about the amount of time I might be spending there.  I told her exactly what I'd been told--it's basically one meeting a month, and the occasional pancake breakfast.  Five years later I was Master of that Lodge and an award winning Masonic researcher and writer of two books by that time.  And don't forget the blog I'd started that was just taking root called The Midnight Freemason--I named it that because I used to stay up half the night writing up pieces for it.  Of course I've added a second Lodge to that to which I'm currently Master, Scottish Rite, York Rite, Shrine, Allied Masonic Degrees, etc. 

As I return from a five day trip to Washington D.C. for Masonic Week and realized today was Valentine's Day, I was reminded of just how much patience she's had over these last twelve years when it comes to the time I spend on the Craft.  And, by the way, that was my second "Masonic" trip this year--in June three of us from my Lodge drove to Washington D.C. with a memorable stop-over in Gettysburg, PA.

To say I've spent a lot more time being a Freemason than I thought I would in the beginning would be an understatement.  I didn't realize the impact my decision to join a "men's fraternity" would have on my life.  In fact, it has changed both of our lives . . . for the better!   I've become a better man, and my wife has wound up with a lot better husband than the one she married.  And she knows how important it is to me.  When I spend hours researching and writing, traveling, attending meetings, etc., she's been nothing but supportive.  And many times she's joined me on these trips, along with my youngest daughter.

So I hope all you Masons out there remember your wives today for Valentine's Day.  Remembered how much we owe them for allowing us the time to be involved with the Fraternity, and lavished them with gifts.  Without their support, we couldn't do all the things we do.  And we also have to be honest in admitting that Freemasonry is a lot more rewarding for us, than it is for them.

So think about that a little bit.  If you didn't do as good a job saying thank you on Valentine's Day, it's never too late to pick something up for her, or to take her out to a fine meal at her favorite restaurant.

I'll never forget what one of our member's wives told me not long after I joined.  She told me, "not all Masonic Widows have buried their husbands.  We just don't see them very much!"

~Todd E. Creason

I wrote this piece last year, but I did notice that tomorrow evening (Valentine's Day 2018) is my lodge's regularly stated meeting.  I guess I haven't learned very much since last year. 

Saturday, February 10, 2018

Week In Review: 2/10/18

The new "headquarters"
It's been a busy week!  Here's the highlights . . .

1.)  My wife decided since I'm working on a new book it was time for an upgrade to my office furnishings.  That tiny little desk I've had since I was a kid now belongs to my kid.  I have a great new desk and leather chair--took me seven hours to put the desk together, but it was well worth it.  Lets just say I have plenty of room to spread out. 

2.)  New book is rolling along nicely.  It will be in full color, and will feature the photography of my good friend Gregory J. Knott.  It's a collection of some of my favorite blog posts, articles, presentations, and speeches along with Greg's favorite photos.  The photos add a new element for me.  They'll not only compliment the stories I'm featuring, but in many cases, they'll have a story of their own to tell.  I'm hoping it will be a book readers will enjoy reading, and thanks to the photos, thumbing through.  I think the pieces I've included make great Lodge education presentations (I've used many of them myself).  And I also want to tell the story of the Midnight Freemasons blog, and some of the adventures that have resulted.  There will be ample new material throughout.  No title yet, and no anticipated release date--but I'll keep you posted.

3.)  I've updated the "News" tab finally on the the From Labor to Refreshment blog.  All my upcoming dates and locations are on there now.  I'll try and do a better job at keeping that up going forward.

4.)  Wrote a great piece on the Midnight Freemasons this week in case you missed it "Brother John Wayne On Political Discourse."  Be sure and check that out.  

Be sure and keep on eye on the From Labor To Refreshment blog this week--I've pulled two excellent pieces out of the archives for this week.  I've got a great Valentine's Day piece coming out on Tuesday the 13th, and another entertaining piece "Brotherly Love Behind The Wheel" for Thursday the 15th.

And remember, the Midnight Freemasons post three days a week on Monday, Wednesday, and Friday.  Between the two blogs, we've got your whole work week covered.  And I plan to do a recap every Saturday on the past week, and give you a little preview of the upcoming week.

And do feel free to leave comments--I do moderate the comments, but I'll post them unless you're trying to get me to join the Illuminati.  You can also email me at webmaster@toddcreason.org.

Enjoy your week!

~Todd E. Creason
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