In this, the age of technology on a personal level (in other words, PCs, texting and so on), many of us might want to work on a list for the new year — not of what we would like to accomplish, but what we don’t want. Examples might be randomly drawn from recent emails to one’s inbox.
• No, I do not want a free reading from Oregon Psychics. I’ve read some of your example readings and they seem like good advice, nothing more, nothing less. To know that “I should exercise good judgment and be aware that some people may misinterpret my actions” is neither foresight nor a stroke of genius. My grandad would have called it horse sense. That’s a name given, as I understand it, because horses have an innate ability to keep themselves out of trouble.
• No, I do not want to meet you “for margaritas, and maybe more,at nine.” I’m a married guy, you might also be a guy, or married, and are you aware that the number you’re texting belongs to my grandson, who is 8 years old? Maybe somebody should update their phone list.
• No, I am not interested in any product that promises me a weight loss of 15 pounds in 30 days, or my money back. I used to be a wrestler, so I know how to lose weight quickly, and most of those ways are not very healthy, but they are probably healthier than any way that can deliver what you promise.
• No, I am not interested in your right-wing alarmist Christian e-mail list. I do not pretend to know when the end time is coming, but I do know that fanatics through the ages have spread the word that it would occur in their lives, which may be another way of avoiding the challenge of living real faith, in real time, with the setbacks and triumphs of real life.
• No, I do not have a preference of Marlboro vs. Camel. Either one can give me lung disease or heart disease. Do I have a preference, heart disease or lung disease ? I will check box No. 3 — none of the above.
• No, I do not want a $25 gift certificate, just for answering a brief survey. I was actually dumb enough to open that one once, and found that your brief survey was the beginning of — well, a string of surveys. Thirty minutes later, I finally had sense enough to vote “delete.”
• Wow, this is one I may actually want to respond to. Okay, $5 off a meal at Rockfish Restaurant, for bringing in this coupon; and yes, it’s very likely I will either be in Albuqerque or Lubbock during the next two months. This one looks like a keeper.
Oh, did I mention that I actually asked to be put on their email list? I guess that makes a difference.
Clyde Davis is pastor of First Presbyterian Church in Portales and a college instructor. He can be contacted at: