The Day I “Became” A Methodist – July 26, 2011

First United Methodist Church - Piedmont, Alabama

Fellow gardeners, now as long as I’m writing about nearly becoming a Baptist I reckon I as might as well tell you how I didn’t nearly become a Methodist, I BECAME A METHODIST…..;-) I write this little stories cause I love to write about gardening. The ups, downs, joys, sorrows, absurdities of gardening. And I like to write about small town life too. I think I got a good perspective on small town life cause I spent just enough time in a big city though in a suburban setting that I really really really appreciate small town life and never take it for granted. But I reckon I got to say one thing that is kinda ironic knowing what I just now wrote about appreciating small town life. Cause in the late 70’s I couldn’t wait to get out of Piedmont but that didn’t have as much to do with Piedmont as it did with me. What I was, what I’d become and what I wanted to try to be in the future.

So I was gone for 25 years or so and boy I was so happy to get back to Piedmont I didn’t know what to do. And when I wake up every morning in bed here in Piedmont and not in some apartment in Atlanta, well I’m so very thankful I’m a Piedmont-ite. And if you don’t like small town life, well I hope wherever you live it makes you happy cause Piedmont and all its small town advantages and even perceived disadvantages make me feel like I’m the luckiest guy on the planet, that and my wife Linda.

Living in Piedmont with my wife Linda? What did I do to deserve this life I don’t know but I ain’t asking about it too much or questioning it to closely cause I might wake one day alone in an apartment back in Atlanta, alone and wondering if this is all life is…Another words, one day I couldn’t wait to get out of Piedmont and another day I couldn’t wait to get back to Piedmont and stay back. This time they’re going to have to pry my dying hands off the Piedmont City limits sign to get me outta town for good the next time…….:-)

OK fellow gardeners, enough of that, I’m starting to sound like I might run for mayor of Piedmont…..:-) A black President? Sure….A Catholic President? Why not……A President who combs his hair over the top of his head, has hotels named after him and is most famous for saying, “Your fired”. I don’t think so…….And a Jewish, ex-con, Master Gardener of Piedmont as Mayor?…….Are you kidding me?…….If you think that’s going to happen you got to stop drinking moonshine during the day in all this heat………:-) What would one of my best qualifications for office be? I slept in the middle of the new Borden Springs road in the middle of the night!!!  I sunk my brand new Jeep in the middle of the creek in Borden Springs  5 1/2 hours after I drove it off the lot in Atlanta?…I was married in a Seed & Feed store in Seiverville, Tennessee by the same guy who married Dolly Parton?…..Well come to think of it that last one might just qualify me for office even if the other ones disqualify me…..:-)

Alright enough already fellow gardeners. I know what you’re going to say now even before you say it. It’s like we’re married to each other……:-) OK here’s how I BECAME A METHODIST…..:-) I’m taking chemo and radiation together at the Piedmont Hospital in Atlanta after my throat cancer coming back for the third time. Now the doctors decide they’re going to go after and kill this cancer as aggressively as this cancer is trying to kill me. And I ain’t arguing with that strategy as I just met my Linda and I don’t want to die just about the time I’m just really finding out how wonderful life can be.

So one day as we’re at the hospital for something or other. A Cat-scan or something or other the lady who checks us in asks me the usual million questions no matter how many times I already been there. So one of the questions is, “Mr. Daniels what religious affiliation if any do you want us to put on your file?” Well when you got cancer again for the 3rd time you better find yourself a sense of humor and quick if you’re planning on doing anything else but crying, worrying and feeling sorry for yourself. So I look over at Linda with this devilish smile on my face, cause lets face it fellow gardeners, I’m a devil anyways…..:-) I look at this woman with a straight face and as solemn as could be say,” Well even though I was raised Jewish I been hanging out with lots of Methodists lately and to tell you the tell you the truth I kinda feel more Methodist than Jewish” Well I smile politely, she smiles politely and types something into the computer, what I don’t know and I ain’t even thinking about it either. I’m thinking, “Hey whatever this Cat-scan has to say I hope its something like NO CANCER FOUND….or something like that anyways……

Well about this time of my life I going to the hospital about as much as I’m going to the bathroom the night before my last colonoscopy……..:-) Sorry while funny that might have been too graphic for you fellow gardeners, my apologies, no more about colonoscopies or nasty tasting stuff you have to drink the night before…..:-) But the next time I’m at the hospital being asked the same questions they asked me every time I been here the lady, another lady this time, says, “Mr. Daniels it says here in your file that you’re a Methodist, is that correct?”……:-) Fellow gardeners, if she had asked me if my nationality was Korean I couldn’t have been more surprised…..:-) And then it hit me about the same time it hit Linda, me and my big mouth always being goofy and all, you know, outrageous and all…..Well I’d turned myself from a life long Jew into a born again brand new Methodist by running my big mouth too much and being too cute by half with the lady from the records at the hospital on our last visit. Somewhere in that hospital there are 3 people laughing, one was me, the other was my wife Linda and somewhere in some office I don’t know where is that lady I was being goofy with on our last visit for the Cat-scan, she’s laughing all the way to heaven cause she just got credit for converting her first nice Jewish boy into a nice Methodist boy………:-)

Paul From Alabama

Addendum:

One of these days and I’ll probably never live to see it I don’t reckon but maybe one day all men will “judge a man not by the color of his skin but by the contents of his character” as a great man once said and he could have added this too, “not be judged by the name of his or her religion but by the actions of their lives. Sometimes when I see kids playing together of one religion or another, one ethnic group or another, I think maybe it will be so….For once in my life I hope I’m right….

Paul From Alabama

The comments below were transferred from my “old” blog as was the little story above with the date of the story as shown.

Tuesday, July 26, 2011

5 Comments Manage Comments for this Entry
Bubba_MoCity
I also hope you are right, Paul.

Love your philosophy of life.

It’s OK to disagree, we don’t have to kill each other, just get along and enjoy what we do have in common; life and a hope for a better tomorrow.

Tuesday, July 26, 2011 – 05:41 PM
God bless you for sharing.
Wednesday, July 27, 2011 – 12:40 AM
Anonymous
Judging from whoever did the landscaping at the Methodist Church back then, they needed you Paul….and I can see how you could get confused… those dome things remind me of a Jewish Temple…are they still there? Jan
Wednesday, July 27, 2011 – 11:10 AM
@Bubba_MoCity, you got it Bubba……..Just as you said.

@Lydia, God bless you for reading them and sharing your thoughts…..

@ Jan, Yes they are and its one of the most beautiful churches in Piedmont. I love the windows, the domes and the woodwork inside. I went to a memorial service for Mr. Kimbrough and that’s the first time I’d been in that church in 40 years I bet, I’d forgot how lovely it was inside. I always dropped my granny outside to go to church and picked her up outside after church. I went to something or other called MYF’s I think it was called, just young folks getting together in the evening if I remember right. It was a long time ago and I only visited a few times.

Wednesday, July 27, 2011 – 05:04 PM
Anonymous
Were you one of them Congregational Methodist?? First Methodist?? Wesley Methodist?? or just Methodist???  lol…..love the story!!!  Rickey
Friday, July 29, 2011 – 08:44 PM

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