Another Year

Well, 2017 is over and I’m not sorry to see it go. For me, personally, the year had its ups and downs. It included new carpet, work successes, a three week bout with debilitating digestive issues (food poisoning or some nasty bug).

As a country, I feel that 2017 was an awful year. In that regard, it lived down to my expectations. In January, a person who is uniquely unqualified, assumed the office of President of the United States. His performance is as awful as I had feared. The only surprising thing, to me, is that we are not yet in a nuclear war as I feared we would be by this time. We have another 3 years for him to realize that fear, however, so I’m not comforted.

The damage that he has been able to do has been substantial. Many aspects of the social safety net have been eroded and some  abolished. The protection of our environment has been greatly scaled back. Our standing of the world has been greatly diminished. This has all been achieved in less than a year. Even if he is somehow removed from office earlier than his term ends, the damage has been done. The people who might possibly replace him are just as bad in some regards. Our only hope is that a possibility exists that one or more of the houses of Congress may come back into Democratic hands. This would, at least, be a small check on his power.

I’m not very hopeful that this will happen, but the small possibility of it is all we have for now. If there is a God, now would be a good time for him/her to intervene.


Lost (and Found) in Space

I had the pleasure of receiving a copy of “Lost (and Found) in Space”. I’m loving the pictures and the notes that Bill Mumy and Angela Cartwright have shared. As I look at a photo of the great, intelligent, beautiful, wonderful June Lockhart, I remember that as a child of 4 or five, I didn’t know the names of many actresses, but I did know “June Lockhart”. In fact, I was proud to tell people that June Lockhart was my favorite actress!
What child of the 1960s wouldn’t want to have June Lockhart and Guy Williams as parents! Mart Kristen, Angela Cartwright and Bill Mumy were so privileged to have them both as (TV) parents!

Happy Holidays

To all people who who are proclaiming that they are grateful that they can again say “Merry Christmas” at this time of year, I ask, “Who ever told you that you can’t?”

The fact that many individuals, businesses and government institutions choose to greet people with “Happy Holidays” instead, doesn’t diminish the expression of your faith in the least.

“Happy Holidays” is meant to be an attempt to include all people in the festivities regardless of their religion or beliefs. Rather than unintentionally exclude people by assuming that they are Christian, we wish them “Happy Holidays” to wish them happiness regardless of their beliefs.

If you want to say “Merry Christmas”, then by all means, do so. Just remember that the person to whom you send this greeting, may not share your beliefs. They probably won’t be offended as they will just attribute it to just another person making assumptions.

If, on the other hand, you’d like to indicate to people that you care about them no matter what their beliefs are, then consider using “Happy Holidays” instead.

New Year’s Day 2017 – Mixed emotions

Today is the first day of a new year. I have mixed emotions about the move from 2016 to 2017.

On a personal level, 2016 was a pretty good year for me. My work is going well. I was able to complete some major projects. I really like and respect my manager and she holds me in high regards and has told me that numerous times.

My relationships with family, friends and others are going well. I still love my home and I’m continuing to make improvements to it. Financially, I doing fine.

2016 was good for me personally, but there were some really ugly things that happened nationally.

The presidential primaries and the election were extremely ugly. It seemed like every day, there was some new ugly, gut-wrenching turn. I’m glad that it’s over, but the outcome has left me worried, concerned, fearful and sad. After the “Great Disaster” on November 8, 2016, I’m actually on the verge feeling hopeless.

It’s for this reason that I hate to see 2016 go. The thought of what is going to happen only a little over 19 days from now makes me want to cry.

It’s like I’m trapped in a car with no brakes, no steering and no way to get out. The car is hurtling toward a solid brick wall at 70 mph and there is nothing I can do about it. The optimist in me tells me that we’ll all survivr, but this is nothing like we’ve ever experienced before. I can see how it coule ALL end very badly.

Yesterday, I order some “I Support President Obama” bumper stickers, which I will have on my car for at least the next four years.

No Dark Past for Superman

Yesterday (May 24, 2015), Charles Moss wrote this article claiming that Superman had a “dark past” and that “Man of Steel” and the upcoming “Superman v. Batman” were simply brining him back to his roots.

Here is my response to that premise:

Mr. Moss, you’re article is based on incomplete and incorrect information. As such, it is completely misleading to people who have only a casual acuaintance of the Caped Kryptonian. The purpose of this post is to rebut your assertion that Superman has a dark past and that a darker depiction of Superman would be a return to his roots. This is utterly wrong.

To further your premise, you state that “…in the very early stages of the character’s development, he wasn’t a hero at all, but a villain. And even after Superman became an enforcer of good in his earlier years, his brand of justice was as gray, morally speaking…”. Your assertion presents incomplete information. I feel that it’s my duty to explain what’s missing for reader to get a more clear picture.

Your premise is based on the fact that the very first conception, by teenagers Jerry Siegel and Joe Schuster, of a character called “Superman” was of a villain that is far removed from the character that would eventually been seen in print. This excerpt from the Superman article on Wikipedia explains it fairly well:

“Jerry Siegel and Joe Shuster, then students at Cleveland’s Glenville High School, first conceived Superman as a bald telepathic villain bent on world domination.[5][6] The character first appeared in “The Reign of the Superman”, a short story from Science Fiction: The Advance Guard of Future Civilization #3, a fanzine published by Siegel in 1933.[6] Siegel re-envisioned the character later that year as a hero bearing no resemblance to his villainous namesake, with Shuster visually modeling Superman on Douglas Fairbanks Sr. and his bespectacled alter ego, Clark Kent, on a combination of Harold Lloyd[13][14] and Shuster himself…”

It’s important to note that the original conception of Superman never was published! By the time Siegel and Schuster published the first Superman story, they had completely reworked the concept. The only elements to remain from the original concept was the name of the character. the “bald villain bent on word domination” was later realized by the creation of a character called the Ultra-Humanite and then later by Lex Luthor. So to insinuate that Superman was originally a villain, is a totally misleading statement.

You also state that Superman’s brand of justice was “gray, morally speaking” is based on examples from early stories where Superman was rougher with perpetrators than what we saw in later years.

In his first story, Superman…
saves an innocent woman about to be executed while delivering the real murderess, bound and gagged, and leaving her on the lawn of the state Governor’s mansion after breaking through the door into his house with a signed confession
comes to the aid of a woman being beaten up by her husband, who faints when his knife shatters on Superman’s skin
rescues Lois Lane from a gangster who abducted her after she rebuffed him at a nightclub
goes to Washington, D.C., instead of South America, to “stir up news” as his editor wants, to investigate a Senator that he suspects is corrupt, and prompting a confession by leaping around high buildings with the terrified man, which leads into the next issue.

Yes, Superman does take the law into his own hands in the early stories. These kinds of actions might be the reason you call his brand of justice “gray”. If his brand of justice is gray, his motivations are not! He saves an innocent woman from being executed, keeps a woman from being beaten by her louse of a spouse, rescues a reporter from a gangster and helps expose a corrupt politician.

So, your premise that Superman started as a dark character is a stretch at best and a total misrepresentation at worst. These are the facts as I know them. Superman does not deserve this kind of treatment from Zack Snyder or you.

Michael A. Moore

Incubation – Stage 2

As you know from my previous posts on this subject, by this time I was hooked on Action Comics. The comic book infection I was already experiencing was about to get much worse. On another trip to the grocery store, I notice a comic book called “Justice League of America” (#112). I didn’t know anything about it, other than I had seen some Justice League of America cartoons in the 60s, there were some recognizable characters (like Superman and Batman) on the cover and it had a tag line stating, “Here come TV’s Super Friends!”. I figured, I like Superman and Batman. I’ve seen the Super Friends and I enjoy the cartoon, so why not!

This issue was a bit different than the Action Comics that I had been purchasing. This one, was a THICK comic book! Instead of the 32 pages of the comic books I had been getting, this one boasted a full 100 pages! Being a much heftier magazine, the price was heftier too. It was 60 cents as opposed to the 20 cents I was spending on the previous ones.

Inside, I was treated to a story entitled “War with the One-Man Justice League!”, in which the heroes of the Justice League, reactivate an android who, in the past had fought them and had the ability to duplicate all of their powers! They had done this in an effort to restore the abilities of six in their rank (Superman, Batman, Aquaman, Green Lantern, Flash and Elongated Man) half of whose powers had been stolen by another villain in the previous issue.

I was introduced to so many characters in this story! It was a thrill ride from start to finish. All the while there were a myriad of hints dropped that there was a history behind these characters and this team that I could scarcely imagine. I left the story with far more questions than I had going into it. Rather than discourage me from reading further issues, it induced in me a fever to know! I had to know who these people were. I needed to learn their histories. I was hungrier than ever for comic books.

Immediately following the story, there was a two page feature that briefly gave more information about the history of the android they fought. It seems that he was originally created by a mad scientist to steal the powers of the Justice League’s member and destroy them all. Some of my questions were answered, but they were replaced now, with other still.

In the pages following the main story, I was introduced to the concept of a “reprint”. These were stories that had previously been published and were now being printed again in this book. I was later to learn that by some readers, these reprints were disdained in favor of new stories, but I loved them. Suddenly my comic book universe expanded to include not one hero, not a few heroes, but literally dozens of heroes and history that spanned decades, not merely months or years!

In the rest of the book I was introduced to Starman, Martian Manhunter, The Seven Soldiers of Victory (including Green Arrow, Speedy, Vigilante, Shining Knight, Crimson Avenger, the Star-Spangled Kid and Stripesy) and the villains Black Star and Dr. Destiny (among others).

Since, at the time, Justice League of America was published on a bi-monthly schedule, I had to wait for two whole months for the next issue. I didn’t know how I was going to survive until then, but I knew that Superman would come to my rescue at least once in that time.

In the meantime, I re-read that book at least a dozen times. I practically absorbed every word and every piece of art in it. I still have the book and cherish it. To call it dog-eared is giving it being charitable. Not knowing any better at the time, the cover is now held together by more than one piece of transparent tape.

Even now, just writing about my experience with this book, my eyes get moist just thinking about the beauty, wonder and enjoyment I experience with it.

My comic book infection was bad by this point, but it was about to get (thankfully) much worse!

Incubation – Stage 1

In my previous post, I told the tale of how I was infected by a love of comic books. Continuing the story of the progress of the disease, we come to approximately one month later.

Again, I was grocery shopping with my mother. As I passed the comic book rack, I spied the next issue of Action Comics (#434). On the cover, it showed Superman, sitting in a dentist’s chair. The dentist has some pliers in Superman’s mouth and was obviously pulling a tooth. Superman seemed to be in immense pain! How could this be? Superman was invulnerable to everything! How could he be in pain? How did he get in this condition? Well, there was no hesitating… I HAD to purchase this issue! I had to know!

On the way home, I started to read. The main story was called “The Krypton Connection!”. I won’t go into too many details but the situation was caused by two rogue Kryptonians who were plotting against the Man of Steel. At the end of the story, I encountered something surprising and frustrating. This was only the first part of a two-part story! I was going to have to wait another WHOLE MONTH before this story would be resolved! How could this happen? How was I going to survive? One thing I did know was that every trip I made to the supermarket, I was going to be checking the comic book rack thoroughly so I could satisfy my curiosity.

The second story in the book was a Green Arrow store entitled “Zatanna’s Double Identity!”. In it, I got to meet three characters that I didn’t know… Green Arrow, Black Canary and Zatanna. I enjoyed this story a lot too.

The Superman story was, again, written by Cary Bates and the Green Arrow story was written by Elliot S! Maggin.

After an excruciatingly long month, it was time for the conclusion of the tale I read weeks earlier. Action Comics #435 showed an obviously infuriated Superman crushing a globe of the Earth (or was it the Earth itself?). The cover exclaimed, “Look out Earth! It’s Doomsday when Superman screams… ‘I Want to Wreck the World!’”.

I had to buy the issue anyway, but if there had been any doubt in my mind, this cover would certainly remove it! Luckily for me, this was just a two-part story and the sweet resolution did come within those pages.

The “backup” story was, again, one starring The Atom and it was entitled, “The Unmasking of the Atom”. It was very enjoyable as I had begun to expect they always were.

The Superman tale was penned by Cary Bates and the one starring The Atom was done by Elliot S! Maggin.

Without even knowing what would be in store for me in the next issue, I did know that in another month, a copy of it would be coming home with me!

I was falling in love with comic books and didn’t realize it. I guess love works like that a lot of the time.


OK… I’m old school when it comes to (DC) comic books. I was born in 1961. Comic books were on the periphery of my life for my earliest years. I would occasionally run across a comic book at a friend’s house, in the barber shop, doctor’s waiting rooms, etc. I would read them and enjoy them but they never were an important part of my life at those ages.

I did enjoy super-hero cartoons, movies and television shows. Since I was born in ’61, I was too late to have caught “The Adventures of Superman” on TV when it aired originally, but luckily there reruns available at various times on one of the local stations (WDRB in Louisville, KY). I always enjoyed super-heroes and especially Superman. Comic books were only a side item until one fateful day.

I don’t know exactly what day it was or the month, but it was most likely in December of 1973 when it happened. I was at the local supermarket (Coonie’s I believe) with my mother, doing some grocery shopping. Near the checkout, I passed by the comic book rack. (Yes, at one time, there were no stores dedicated to selling comic books but rather; they were sold at grocery stores, drug stores, convenience stores and many other places that sold magazines.)

Anyway, as I passed the stand, I noticed a comic book with Superman on the cover. The cover showed three invisible people (we could see their outlines through the magic of Superman’s various vision powers) pulling Superman along, by the cape, through the air. The trio looked to be ordinary humans. What the heck was going on here!? As I said, I had read superman comic books in the past and had enjoyed them, but until that moment, I had never actually purchased one. I thought, “I haven’t read a comic book in a while, it might be fun.”

On the way home, I started examining my new prize. The cover told me that the book was Action Comics #433. Inside, I learned that the story referred to on the cover was called “The Man Who Was Buried on Page 64!”. I won’t get into the story here, but I will say that I enjoyed it very much. The second story in the book starred a character called “The Atom”. He was a hero who wore a colorful, skin-tight costume and could shrink to sub-atomic size. I had never seen this character in a comic book, but I did remember him from some cartoons in the 60s. I especially remember him from the old Justice League cartoons, where he often perched on one of the other heroes’ shoulders as they sped to confront a menace. The story was called “Affair of the Bouncing Chair!”. Again, I won’t go into the story here, but I enjoyed it as well.

I later realized that the Superman story was written by Cary Bates and the Atom story was written by a fellow named Elliot S! Maggin. (They would soon become two of my all-time favorite comic book writers.) Little did I know it, but I was infected by comic books that day and after 41 years, no cure is in sight!

You have a right…

Today, as I was filling my gas tank, I had strong reaction to something I heard coming from another car there.

The driver of that car was also filing his gas tank but was also loudly playing his stereo. What I heard from it bothered and offended me. I’m no fan of rap music, but I certainly don’t begrudge anyone to listen to it if he or she so chooses.

This particular selection was full of words that I find extremely distateful, derogatory, demeaning and just plain ugly, Words like “n****r, f**k, b***h and w***e are not foreign to me, but I don’t use them and I don’t like hearing them, especially when blared to me against my will in a public place.

As I said, I don’t begrudge anyone to listen to this, but I don’t choose to and I don’t want to be forced to do it. Because of the volume and proximity, I dodn’t have the choice though. I can see where, if I was blaring classial music from my car that someone could find it annoying or even rude. When I fill my tank, I turn off my car and consequently my radio.

I’m a huge advocate of protecting everyone’s right to do as they please, but your rights end where mine begins (and vice-versa). Another way of saying it is that your right to move your hands in any direction ends where my body begins.

People, everywhere in this nation, should learn to respect one another’s feelings and rights. Let’s all try to be respectful of each other.

Examining the Bible – Matthew 1

(Bible text is taken from the NIV version of the Bible as found on

The Genealogy of Jesus the Messiah

1 This is the genealogy of Jesus the Messiah1 the son of David, the son of Abraham:
2 Abraham was the father of Isaac,
Isaac the father of Jacob,
Jacob the father of Judah and his brothers,
3 Judah the father of Perez and Zerah, whose mother was Tamar,
Perez the father of Hezron,
Hezron the father of Ram,
4 Ram the father of Amminadab,
Amminadab the father of Nahshon,
Nahshon the father of Salmon,
5 Salmon the father of Boaz, whose mother was Rahab,
Boaz the father of Obed, whose mother was Ruth,
Obed the father of Jesse,
6 and Jesse the father of King David.
David was the father of Solomon, whose mother had been Uriah’s wife,
7 Solomon the father of Rehoboam,
Rehoboam the father of Abijah,
Abijah the father of Asa,
8 Asa the father of Jehoshaphat,
Jehoshaphat the father of Jehoram,
Jehoram the father of Uzziah,
9 Uzziah the father of Jotham,
Jotham the father of Ahaz,
Ahaz the father of Hezekiah,
10 Hezekiah the father of Manasseh,
Manasseh the father of Amon,
Amon the father of Josiah,
11 and Josiah the father of Jeconiah and his brothers at the time of the exile to Babylon.
12 After the exile to Babylon:
Jeconiah was the father of Shealtiel,
Shealtiel the father of Zerubbabel,
13 Zerubbabel the father of Abihud,
Abihud the father of Eliakim,
Eliakim the father of Azor,
14 Azor the father of Zadok,
Zadok the father of Akim,
Akim the father of Elihud,
15 Elihud the father of Eleazar,
Eleazar the father of Matthan,
Matthan the father of Jacob,
16 and Jacob the father of Joseph, the husband of Mary, and Mary was the mother of Jesus who is called the Messiah.
17 Thus there were fourteen generations in all from Abraham to David, fourteen from David to the exile to Babylon, and fourteen from the exile to the Messiah.2
Joseph Accepts Jesus as His Son
18 This is how the birth of Jesus the Messiah came about: His mother Mary was pledged to be married to Joseph, but before they came together, she was found to be pregnant through the Holy Spirit. 19 Because Joseph her husband3 was faithful to the law, and yet did not want to expose her to public disgrace, he had in mind to divorce her quietly.
20 But after he had considered this, an angel of the Lord appeared to him in a dream and said, “Joseph son of David, do not be afraid to take Mary home as your wife, because what is conceived in her is from the Holy Spirit.4 21 She will give birth to a son, and you are to give him the name Jesus,[f] because he will save his people from their sins.”
22 All this took place to fulfill what the Lord had said through the prophet: 23 “The virgin will conceive and give birth to a son, and they will call him Immanuel” (which means “God with us”).5
24 When Joseph woke up, he did what the angel of the Lord had commanded him and took Mary home as his wife. 25 But he did not consummate their marriage until she gave birth to a son. And he gave him the name Jesus.

What do we know?

  • Jesus (or at least Joseph) was descended from Abraham and David. Joseph’s father was Jacob, his grand-father was Matthan and his great-grand-father was Eleazar.
  • Joseph and Mary were not yet married when she became pregnant by the Holy Spirit.
  • Upon learning of her pregnancy, Joseph, at first, thought to divorce her (did they get married in the meantime?), but he decided not to after an angel came to him and explained what had taken place.

1 The genealogy of Jesus includes (in order) Abraham, Isaac, Jacob, Judah, Perez, Hezron, Ram, Amminadab, Nahshon, Salmon, Boaz, Obed, Jesse, King David, Solomon, Rehoboam, Abijah, Asa, Jehoshaphat, Jehoram, Uzziah, Jotham, Ahaz, Hezekiah, Manasseh, Amon, Josiah, Jeconiah, Shealtiel, Zerubbabel, Abihud, Eliakim, Azor, Zadok, Akim, Elihud, Eleazar, Matthan, Jacob, Joseph. This is through Joseph, even though Joseph was not related by blood, to Jesus since Jesus was born of Mary while she was still a virgin.
2 This passage indicates three sets of 14 generations (3×14=42), however there are only 41 names, including Jesus.
3 Joseph is called “her husband”. The previous sentence indicates that they weren’t married when Mary was found to be pregnant, but now Joseph is called her husband. Also, Joseph contemplates divorcing her. Either Joseph decided to marry her anyway and then thought better of it and thought about divorcing here, or the concept of marriage is different than what we are used to.
4 This passage says she was made pregnant by the Holy Spirit. Since, later, we learn that God, Jesus and the Holy Spirit are the same entity, so, we believe this to be also God and Jesus.
5 This is a reference to Isaiah 7:14