Saturday, May 18, 2024

Thirty-Eight Years as But a Day! (published 5-18-2024; article #472)


There is plenty of game in the woods. There are plenty of fish in the sea. Hunt and fish for awhile. Pick one. Settle down. Live and enjoy life, the good and the bad, with all the enthusiasm and realistic optimism that the Good Lord gives you, if you know and believe in Him and know your everlasting future. Toss in a heaping helping of humor, while you are at it!

Greetings, and welcome to the 123rd entry, under the family topic section. Thursday marked the 38th wedding anniversary for Mrs. Appalachian Irishman and me. This entry indexes previous anniversary articles, finds humor in how I fixed my mistake, on our 27th anniversary, and highlights this year's anniversary. The conclusion encourages settling down, after a good hunting or fishing expedition.

Index of Previous Anniversary Articles

This husband has spent time in the dog house, but never for forgetting an anniversary. Since 2020, I seem to have gotten into the annual habit of writing about our wedding anniversary.

This website started on 3/6/2006. The lucky 13th article is “20 Years as But a Day (published 5-16-2006).” I replied to the pithy and kind comment by “Mystic,” with whom I used to exchange friendly barbs. His online platforms haven't been active in almost a decade. I hope that he is well. Mrs. Appalachian Irishman's comment is still missing!

A lucky thirteen anniversaries came and went, before I wrote, “34th Wedding Anniversary: Stealth Mission Accomplished (published 5-17-2020).” The stealth mission was my surprise restoration of the replacement pearl setting, for the pearl ring that my wife's mother had given her several years before. Recent analytics showed that the article had been viewed 179 times, with no comments.

Three years ago, I wrote, “5/16/2021: Thirty-Five Years as But a Day.” The article includes a photograph of Mrs. Appalachian Irishman that I'd taken on 7/17/2012 (my 52nd birthday). She still looks the same this year!

A couple of years ago, the article “Thirty-Six Years as But a Day (published 5-16-2022; article #326)” reflected on our wedding day and included a photograph of the newlywed couple. (I have aged gracefully, and my hair and beard are mostly gray. My wife hasn't aged.) Our 36th anniversary also marked my first full day of retirement and included pithy comments about a point of aggravation.

Last year, the article “Thirty-Seven Years as But a Day (published 5-16-2023; article #413)” embedded the Appalachian Irishman - Podcasts (YouTube) episode, titled “Thirty-Seven Years as But a Day (published 5-16-2023; episode 11).” I got a little choked up near the end.

27th Anniversary: Fixing My Mistake!

This section comes clean about how I fixed my mistake on our 27th wedding anniversary, on 5/16/2013! I had hidden a serious anniversary card and a funny anniversary card, for my wife to find. Check! That was good. While at work, I had ordered flowers for delivery to her at her work location. Check! That was great.

The mistake was that I didn't have my billfold in my back pocket! I promised to call the flower shop before it closed, to pay for the flowers on a charge card, once I was back home. Unexpectedly, I had to work an hour overtime! I couldn't call the flower shop before it closed, to give them my credit card information. Yes, I had driven to and from the office, without my driver's license, which was in my billfold. Thankfully, an officer of the law didn't catch me!

What did I do? I called my “long-suffering” wife, who was already home. I asked, with egg splattered on my face, if she could call the flower shop, to pay for the flowers that had been delivered to her at work! She did.

Once I arrived home, my dear wife helped me wipe the egg off my face, as she tried to restrain her laughter!

I'm man enough to publicly admit my mistakes. This was one example.

38th Anniversary

Early last Thursday morning, before leaving for work, Mrs. Appalachian Irishman said, “Happy anniversary!” I replied in kind, while still sitting on the porcelain throne.

Shortly thereafter, I found the following two post-it notes:

The note on the left was on the kitchen cabinet top. Research indicates that the Moon is an average of 238,855 miles away from Earth. A round trip would be 477,710 miles. That's a long and loving walk, dear! Are we planning a trip to the Moon? I wonder what hiking there would be like!

I found the note on the right on my home office desk. I love you too, dear! By the way, my wife likes to go by the first three letters of her first name. I never call her “Bel.” I call her “George” or “Georgie.”

A couple of days before our anniversary, I ordered a dozen roses to be delivered to my wife, at her work location, on that important date. Once again, From The Heart Flowers & Gifts, in Sevierville, Tennessee, provided excellent service. Being retired, my billfold, with credit cards, and I were at home. I didn't get any egg on my face.

My lovely bride photographed my anniversary gift to her, in the following image, after the roses were delivered to her at work.

She brought them home the next day. Still fresh and beautiful, they are on the dining room table.

On our anniversary, once my wife was home, we enjoyed the late afternoon together. As suppertime approached, I discovered another gift from my wife! She had hidden a card, made in Vietnam (at least not in China), between our two computer tablets, which were on the kitchen cabinet top. The following scanned image is the front of the card.

Our love story continues to be written, day by day. It will have a happy ending. Once our transitions from temporal to everlasting life occur, our love story will continue everlastingly. In heaven, we will no longer be mere husband and wife. We will be even closer, and we will remember our temporal lives as husband and wife.


Yes, there is plenty of game in the woods, and there are plenty of fish in the sea. A young and single man or woman hunts and fishes for awhile. (We date others for a while.) Eventually, we pick one and settle down. (The decision must be mutual, of course!) Marriage, like life, is not a bed of roses all the time. Temporal life brings joy and sorrow. At times, the trail gets dark, rough, and steep. Keep walking together! The Lord will help and guide you through those times. The views from the ridgetops are breathtaking!

To all single young men and women, this young, old man of 63 offers sage advice. Hunt and fish for awhile. Once you've found your catch, settle down. Ensure that God is the central focus of your marriage. Together, live and enjoy life. Relish the good and endure the bad. Be enthusiastic and live with realistic optimism. The Good Lord will walk every step with you. At times, He will carry you.

Don't forget to toss in a heaping helping of humor, while you are at it!

To my dear wife, I close by asking and saying, “Do you want to let this reading audience know why your nickname is George?” I love you, my little Georgie!”

Wednesday, May 08, 2024

May Day, National Day of Prayer, Holocaust Remembrance Day, and VE Day (published 5-8-2024; article #471)


Today, on VE Day, the History Channel (A&E Television Networks, LLC) is scheduling multiple episodes of “Pawn Stars.” See today's schedule at On Holocaust Remembrance Day, their Monday schedule showed the same, usual dribble. Come on, History Channel! Show relevant programs, especially on profound days in history!

Welcome and greetings, dear reader. The purpose of this article (the 40th under the Freedom section and the 20th under the heading Worldviews in Conflict) is to summarize and comment on:

  • May Day (Wednesday, 5/1/2024),

  • National Day of Prayer (Thursday, 5/2/2024),

  • Holocaust Remembrance Day (Monday, 5/6/2024),

  • and VE Day (today, Wednesday, 5/8/2024).

Concluding thoughts focus on freedom and worldviews in conflict. I hope that you and I agree. We need to be on the right side of history. You are welcome to state your case and comment, to begin a civil discussion, if you disagree.

May Day

In ancient times, May Day (May 1st) was a Celtic celebration of spring. Similar May Day celebrations continue in the current era. For example, in grade school, we young'uns would sing, as we circled around the maypole, weaving colorful ribbons around it. Us boys would try to catch the eye of a cute girl!

Since May 1, 1886, May Day, or International Workers’ Day, has focused on labor rights and socialism. The May Day association with labor rights began in the United States and spread internationally. May Day is now an official holiday in 66 countries. In 1894, President Grover Cleveland moved the U.S. May Day celebration to the first Monday in September, Labor Day. The intention was to cut ties with International Workers' Day and its implicit support of communism and other radical causes.

Sources for this section include “May Day 2024: What Is May Day?” The Old Farmer’s Almanac, by Catherine Boeckmann, 5/1/2024; “May Day – May 1, 2024” on National Today; and “May Day,” on, by Editors, 5/1/2017, updated 5/1/2024.

This year, for the Fearghail household, May Day involved the “magical mystery starter.” That was the focus of the humorous article on 5/4/2024. Our car's starter is still working!

National Day of Prayer

The National Day of Prayer, on Thursday, May 2, 2024, followed May Day. The annual observance is on the first Thursday in May. The National Day of Prayer started, in 1952, with a joint resolution of the United States Congress and President Harry S. Truman's signature. Source: “National Day of Prayer – May 2, 2024” on National Today.

Ten short years later, as is commonly known, the 1962 Supreme Court decision prohibited school-mandated prayers in public schools. Conflicting worldviews continue to battle for and against the fundamental right to lead public prayers in government schools and in government school gatherings, such as sporting events.

After King Solomon had completed and consecrated the Jerusalem temple, the Lord came and spoke to him. The full context is in 2 Chronicles 7:11-22. Although the immediate application was to the Old Testament nation of Israel, the principles apply today. 2 Chronicles 7:14 (NIV) reads as follows:

. . . if my people, who are called by my name, will humble themselves and pray and seek my face and turn from their wicked ways, then I will hear from heaven, and I will forgive their sin and will heal their land.

Contextually, the Lord's promise is conditioned by the people's faithfulness or by their humble repentance and return to Him. Obedience to God would bring national blessings to Israel. Rebellion against His will would lead to that nation's destruction.

Would to God that this once-great nation would humble itself, repent of its ungodliness, and seek His face! That is my daily prayer. What about you?

Holocaust Remembrance Day

The unprovoked and unspeakably cruel attack by Hamas on Israeli citizens, on 10/7/2023, and the subsequent and ongoing Israel-Hamas conflict set the tone for Holocaust Remembrance Day, on Monday, May 6th. Recent and ongoing antisemitic protests, across college campuses throughout the United States, focused special attention on the day. Thankfully, Israel's iron dome protected the nation against the Iranian air strikes on 4/13/2024. Israel retaliated on 4/19/2024.

Holocaust Remembrance Day is the 27th of Nisan (April/May) on the Hebrew calendar, unless the day is adjacent to the Sabbath, in which case the date shifts by one day. Holocaust Remembrance Day marks the anniversary of the Warsaw Ghetto Uprising in 1943. The Holocaust (1933 - 1945) was the state-sponsored Nazi German persecution and murder of approximately six million Jews and five million others. The United States Holocaust Memorial Museum is one of several excellent sources.

Slightly larger than New Jersey, in the United States, Israel is about 290 miles (470 km.) long and about 85 miles (135 km.) wide at its widest point. HISTORY of Israel: Timeline on Mission of Israel to the UN in Geneva chronicles Israel's history, from the biblical patriarchs (Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob), to the establishment of the modern state of Israel in 1948, and up to the year 2010.

From Jewish Virtual Library: a Project of American-Israeli Cooperative Enterprise (AICE), the following facts are known: As of January 1, 2024, the population of Israel was 9,842,000. The Jewish proportion of the population in Israel continues to decline. At the end of 2023, the total Jewish population was 7,208,000 (73.2%). The Arab population was 2,080,000 (21.1%). “Others” (i.e., non-Arab Christians, Baha’i, Samaritans, Karaite Jews, Seventh-day Adventists, Messianic Jews, Jehovah’s Witnesses, and former Soviet Union immigrants) made up 5.7% of the population. Worldwide, the Jewish population is about 15.2 million. Of that total, 47% reside in Israel.

"Palestine" on Encyclopedia Britannica (last updated 5/8/2024) is an 80-page printed document that provides the complete history of the geographical region known as Palestine. Palestine is a geographical area (as Appalachia is). The term “Palestinians,” which are Jews, Arabs, and other ethnic groups, refers to the people who live in Palestine. There is no unique Palestinian race or ethnic group. Similarly, the term “Appalachians” refers to those who live in the geographic location of Appalachia. There is no unique Appalachian race or ethnic group. We Appalachians are a mixture of many races and ethnic groups.

Arabs and Jews have heritage and kinship in Noah and Abraham (Gen. 10:1-32; 11:10-32; 25:12-34). Ultimately, all humankind has kinship with Adam and Eve, the first humans (Gen. 1:27; 2:7,21-22; 3:20). In Athens, the apostle Paul's first century speech before the Epicurean and Stoic philosophers included, “From one man he made all the nations, that they should inhabit the whole earth; and he marked out their appointed times in history and the boundaries of their lands. God did this so that they would seek him and perhaps reach out for him and find him, though he is not far from any one of us” (Acts 17:26-27, NIV).

On October 7, 2023, who started the Israel-Hamas conflict? Who can end it? Israel would not need to defend itself, if every Palestinian (Arabs, Jews, and others) could live in peace, as close relatives.

VE Day

Today is the annual observance of Victory in Europe Day (VE Day). On May 8, 1945, Nazi Germany surrendered to the Allied Forces. World War II in Europe was over. My desk calendar shows the annual observances that were mentioned previously. The calendar, however, does not show May 8th as VE Day. I had to write the observance on my calendar.

Two recent articles on this website mark the day. On VE Day, 5/8/2021, I published “5/1/2021, Saturday, May Day: Tribute to a Fine Officer.” I reflected on the May Day and Victory Day celebrations that my wife and I remember, when we were Christian missionaries in Russia. I honored the young officer, whom I met on May Day. On VE Day, 5/8/2022, I published “Mother's Day on VE Day.” The conclusion states, “My Mom was a peacemaker. I have tried to be as well. On this Mother's Day, on VE DAY, 2022, may peace on earth come, as millions of individuals, around the globe, get right with the Good Lord and change their ways!”

Perhaps one day, future desk calendars will show VE Day, on May 8th. Local and national media have given little, if any, attention to the day. I remember.


Concluding thoughts focus on freedom and worldviews in conflict. The saying “freedom is not free” is true. On this VE Day, thinking about the lives lost during the Holocaust and the entirety of World War II, not to mention more recent wars, overwhelms me. Thank you, veterans! Live in honor of veterans, who protected our freedom!

A Christian's freedom cost the atoning sacrifice of Jesus, our Lord and Savior. Live in honor of Jesus, who freed us from sin!

Only two people were indigenous, Adam and Eve. Since then, everyone else has been a colonizer. Adam and Eve's descendants migrated to and settled in new areas. Over the course of centuries, nations have taken and continue to take control of other groups and nations. At times, the cause is just, as in the Allied defeat of Nazi Germany and Imperial Japan in World War II. Often times, the cause is not just. Practically every race and nation have colonized less powerful races and nations. That has been the way of the world, since Adam and Eve's descendants began to settle new areas.

Conflicting worldviews often cause struggles that lead to war. A worldview that calls for the genocide of another race is nothing more than evil incarnate, and it should be stopped dead in its tracks before it escalates. World War II should have taught us that lesson. I hope that the world is not repeating German history from the 1930s.

The right side of history is the biblical worldview. What is the biblical worldview? It is abiding by the law of God, as stated and properly understood in the Bible. In the Sermon on the Mount, Jesus summarized, “So in everything, do to others what you would have them do to you, for this sums up the Law and the Prophets” (Mt. 7:12, NIV).

May all the ethnic groups and nations of the world follow the Golden Rule. This is my prayer. The world will then have peace.

Sunday, May 05, 2024

Happy Birthday, Carol Sue! (published 5-5-2024; article #470)

7/12/2023, 7:49 PM, photograph at Bootheel Youth Camp (near Bloomfield, MO).


The above photograph is the fifth of eleven photographs, in the 8/5/2023 short story “Charleston, MO, Family Reunion & Mission Moscow Reunion.” Under that photograph is written:

From left to right are Addy, yours truly, Mrs. Appalachian Irishman, and my sister. Our smiles reflect the joy of the moment! The cafetorium was filled with campers and adults.

This article's title is a subtle hint. What happened on this day?

What Happened on this Day in History?

Several notable and somewhat noteworthy events happened on May 5th. I checked at least the following sources: “This Day In History: May 5” (, “This Day in History: May 5” (, and “On this day in history - Today, May 5” (

First up is Cinco de Mayo. On May 5, 1862, during the French-Mexican War (1861-1867), an outnumbered Mexican army defeated the invading French army at Puebla. Cinco de Mayo, a holiday in the Mexican state of Puebla, is the annual celebration of the Battle of Puebla.

Remember, y'all! Today is when we place mayonnaise in the sink! Get it? “Sinko de mayo!” I thought that you would laugh!

Second and third up are, on May 5, 1934, the first “Three Stooges” film was released, and, on May 5, 1952, the episode “Lucy Does a TV Commercial” aired on the television show I Love Lucy.” It was the 30th episode in the first season.

Finally, of note, on May 5, 1961, Alan Shepard, Jr., became the first American in space. The Soviet cosmonaut, Yuri Gagarin, was the first, 23 days earlier, on April 12.

Well, so much for historical trivia on this date in history. What is the noteworthy event today?

My Sister was Born!

Yes, my sister was born in 19xx (year edited allegedly and mysteriously by my sister)! We are not blood kin, but we are kindred spirits. We have “adopted” each other. The previously cited 8/5/2023 short story includes all the fun facts!

Actually, my sister isn't ashamed to admit her age. Let's see here. I'm 63. My sister is just over eight years older than me. Why did I embolden 1952, in the previous section? Y'all can figure it out!

I have a headful of mostly gray hair. My sister doesn't have any gray hair on her head. During a recent phone conversation, my sister shared how someone thought that she looked 20 years younger than she is. I told her the fairly recent time, when someone thought that I looked 10 years younger than I am. Sis. beat me, in the looking younger department, by 10 years!


I will publish this article, after I call and wish my sister a happy birthday. This article is the 122nd entry, under the family topic section. You can't pick your blood kin, but you can pick your kindred spirit family!

Happy 72nd birthday, Sis.! My wife and I love you! Please give our love and greetings to all the family out there! Remember to tell everyone to place mayonnaise in the sink today!

Saturday, May 04, 2024

2012 Nissan Sentra: the Magical Mystery Starter (published 5-4-2024; article #469)

5/4/2024 “Magical Mystery Starter” photograph by M. Fearghail.


Humor, gleaned from an unexpected event, and the Beatles' song “Magical Mystery Tour” (11/27/1967 release) inspired the title of this article. I listened to and watched “Magical Mystery Tour (Remastered 2009),” The Beatles (YouTube), 6/17/2018. Welcome to the 113th entry, under the humor section. Fittingly, this is also the 104th article, under the life (such as it is) topic.

This Appalachian Irishman often finds humor in unexpected events. It's how I cope with the realities of life. Aggravation turned inward is depression. Turned upward, it is prayer. Turned sideways, aggravation becomes humor! This story is a recent example. Let me preach on!

The Magical Mystery Starter!

On May Day, Wednesday, 5/1/2024, the “long-suffering” Mrs. Appalachian Irishman jaw-kissed me goodbye, while I was preparing my morning coffee. I wondered why it was taking her so long to crank our 2012 Nissan Sentra. She came back inside and said that the car would not start. I stepped out to the garage and tried. The headlights worked. The dashboard lights worked. The battery was fine. The clicking noise indicated that the starter could be bad. My wife drove our 2006 Frontier to and from work.

Unlike the 6/3/2023 article, about the starter replacement on our 2006 Frontier, I could easily get to the starter on our car. The nearby Advance Auto Parts had a starter in stock that would fit the car. First, I had to remove the original starter.

I found and watched “2012 Nissan Sentra Starter Replacement!” Andy's Auto (YouTube), 3/11/2024. It's a six-minute and 13-second video. With the right tools and a new starter, even this shade tree mechanic could get to and replace the starter. It's secured by four bolts, which face the right side of the car.

I easily unscrewed the smaller top bolt, which is farther back. I didn't have the right-sized offset wrench that could fit the smaller and farther-back second bolt. Even with WD-40, I couldn't break free the two larger bolts, which are on the front. I had the correct hand tool. I forced all my strength into my shoulders and arms. In park, the car rocked backward, as all my power tried to loosen the large bolts. I tried. I gave up. I need to buy an offset wrench that can reach one smaller bolt and a power tool for the larger bolts.

What did this aggravated shade tree mechanic do? Well, I resecured the bolt that I had removed, gave up, and started making phone calls. I arranged for Hot Rods Towing (865-689-1029) to tow the car and me to Knox Horizon Complete Auto Care (865-419-7407). (The articles of 11/13/2023 and 4/3/2024 highly recommended them.) I also highly recommend Hot Rods Towing!

What do you know? Once the tow truck arrived, I cranked the car, just to put the gear in neutral. The car cranked! It cranked two more times! Graciously, Hot Rods Towing didn't charge for the time. Knox Horizon Complete Auto Care enjoyed my thanks but no thanks call.

Our car must have an original “magical mystery starter!” Could this have been a good type of Irish luck? Who knows?

Quickly, the Beatles' “Magical Mystery Tour” came to my fertile imagination. I sang to myself, “The magical mystery starter is waiting to take you away. Waiting to take you away. Take you today!”

Inflationary Humor

I drove our car to the nearby Advance Auto Parts. Instead of buying a new starter, I bought a two-pack of license plate bulbs for our car. (The two original bulbs had been out for a few weeks.) Two fingernail-sized license plate bulbs cost $8.49 plus tax! The two bulbs should have cost no more than $2.00.

In the parking lot, a vendor was selling hot dogs, drinks, and chips. I bought a hot dog, to eat at home. The hot dog was delicious! It should have cost no more than $1.50. I paid $5.00.

Don't get me started on inflation and “govrmint” spending! A dollar or even ten ain't worth much nowadays. Don't worry! We have a money tree, growing in our back yard!


At least on May Day, our car took a day off from hauling my wife to and from work, and she (our female car) got new license plate bulbs!

Don't even ask me about the hand gymnastics that I had to perform, to replace those bulbs! That was after I popped out a few pins, to remove the cover that is inside the trunk lid. The bulb sockets are behind grated metal. I used my “go-go gadget, rubber-flex-arm” powers, to replace the bulbs.

Banging a starter that is going bad, with a hammer or sledgehammer, can force it back to life for a while. My attempt to remove the original starter could have forced it to work. Who knows? Will our 2012 Sentra still need a new starter soon? We will see.

Do I hear you singing the “Magical Mystery Starter” song? If so, give credit to the Beatles and to my aggravation turned sideways!

As a closing afterthought, since today is May 4th, please don't make those “may the fourth be with you” jokes! May 4th, 2016, was when I was discharged home from the second hospital. Previous articles about May 4th are on 5/8/2022 and 5/5/2023.