Good morning Fredericton. Well I just witnessed some of the funniest shit I have ever seen. I dunno if it will translate here on the page as well as it did live in my brain, but fuuuuuuuck, I lost it when I saw this, so here goes ....
All my life I have questioned authority and anything that questions my sense of reason. One of the great questions for all of us, is of course, the existence or non-existence of a god and most definitely, I question the notion of organized religion, always. By the time I was in my thirties, reading, studying and writing at a prolific rate, I entered into an “agnostic” phase, which has since become atheistic which for me is a great relief, but as mentioned I went through a process of agnosticism, and the questioning that comes with that process.
Something interesting though, is the notion that some fans of my music, seem to think that songs such as, “Healing Hands,” and “I Wonder Why” etc, are sort of, religious in nature or perhaps indicative of my “believing” in and of a higher power, due to the nature of their lyrics. Nothing could be further from the truth however, from my perspective, for I was already well into my agnostic phase when I wrote those lyrics and these are songs of “questioning” NOT of submission. That said, if my lyrics touch those of you, in a kind and loving way, those of you who are indeed, religious or believers, then I am happy and have no problem with that.
Now, during this agnostic and “questioning” phase, I used to check out a lot of the Christian, Evangelical television, mainly for the sheer entertainment of it and I always had a blast watching the antics of the pastor dudes up there, with their white suits, giant knotted ties and black plastic hair, on stage, usually in front of thousands, “healing the the lambs” who had flocked up beside him, ready and willing to be “healed” just by the laying of his hands on them. I watched them all, believe me, ALL of them but my favourite, by far, was always the Rev. Ernest Angley. Benny Hinn, was and still is, always good for a laugh but Ernest? He was simply the best.
The laying of hands, the yelling, “HEAL! HEEEEAL!!!” and some man or woman would faint and fall backwards, only to be caught by one or two of his helpers, who would then lay them on the floor to “spasm” in rapture then.....pass out. IT’S BRILLIANT STUFF! You couldn’t make this shit up (well, you could, AND they do, but you get my drift.)
Ernest Angley, is an American Christian evangelist, author and television station owner based in Cuyahoga Falls, Ohio. Now I don’t begrudge old Ernest his millions of dollars and his mansions and tv stations and private jets, as long as I can see it for the entertainment value that he provides. He is of course, in my opinion, a “rip off artist” but hey, whatever turns your crank. To dip into your pockets and lavish money on him, is of course, your choice and some of you may see his “healings” as divine and legit but for me, it’s popcorn and a drink, sit back, and it’s better than half the shitty movies on tv.
So this morning, I turn on the telly in my room and boom!, it’s on The “Ernest Angley Hour” and its right at the very part where he is on stage doing his “laying of the hands” on various people with all kinds of complaints. One thing I should point out, is that old Ernest here, was born in 1921 and STILL with us, doing this shit, at the ripe old age of NINETY SEVEN!!
So the first thing that struck me as funny was that here he is, laying hands on people with all kinds of ailments, telling them that through him and his hands, the power of Jesus was about to heal them for good. I watched him tell one guy who had a bad lower back and trouble walking that he could now walk, bend, jump and run etc, He then told another guy in a wheelchair, who couldn’t stand, how now, indeed, he could. But here’s the funny thing. Ernest himself, requires a “helper” behind him, with his hands all the way around his waist, holding him up, because, HE HIMSELF CAN’T STAND!! Ok, take a moment to think about that....
And now for the pièce de résistance. After seeing a woman with a bad heart whom he gave “mental” Jesus heart surgery to, followed by the straightening a woman’s deformed toe, mentally, through her shoe. Followed by the telling a guy that he could now run a marathon, although the guy said that he had difficulty getting up to find the tv remote, a woman comes up to him and says the following....... now think about this....she says, “Pastor, there is something wrong with my neck. I have this chronic pain on the one side,” and she then raises her hand up, rubs the area to show him the side of her neck that is troubling her. “I can’t take it anymore. Help me, please.”
By this time I am riveted. I KNOW that old Ernest here is going to lay his hands on her neck, willing Jesus to come into the top of her head and work his way down her cranium, melting his love into the nape of her neck, only to carry her pain away, on a feathery cloak of healing, carrying it with him back to heaven, only to then have her faint at his knees, in a puddle of love and belief. I LOVE this, come on my favourite pastor, heal her, HEEEEAAAALLL HER!!!
Ernest raises his hand up to the side of her neck.....while I am holding my breath......he feels her neck, here, there, and here, then takes his hand away.....here it comes, here come the words we are all waiting for....the words the audience needs to hear...to know......to believe......that Jesus himself, is passing his power through the body and hands of the greatest tv pastor of all-time.
Ernest looks into her eyes and says, “YOU’VE BEEN SLEEPING FUNNY ON IT. GET YOURSELF A NEW PILLOW.”
What? Get yourself a new pillow!!??? I seriously thought that I was going to drop to the floor in a fit. Here I was all alone in my hotel room, laughing uncontrollably as I said out loud, “YOU’VE BEEN SLEEPING FUNNY ON IT. GET YOURSELF A NEW PILLOW!” only to laugh again and again. Now I may have a warped sense of humour but THAT is some funny shit right there. Is it not? Jesus is God. God is Jesus. All knowing. All powerful. Omnipotent. And Ernest is the conduit of that omnipotence. “You’ve been sleeping funny on it. Get yourself a new pillow!” BWAHAHAHAHAHAHA!! Oh I love it. Thank you Ernest. You’re the best of the best still at 97!! Keep going. Who knows, by the time you’re 107 you might be telling them, “Oh fuck off! There’s shit all wrong with you!”
Fredericton, is the capital of the Canadian province of New Brunswick. The city is situated in the west-central portion of the province along the Saint John River, which flows west to east as it bisects the city. The river is the dominant natural feature of the area. One of the main urban centres in New Brunswick, the city had a population of 56,224 in the 2011 census. It is the third-largest city in the province after Moncton and Saint John. For those of you not too familiar with the east coast, it is Saint John, New Brunswick and Saint John’s, Newfoundland.
The earliest known inhabitation of the area dates back 12,000 years, according to archaeologists, evidenced by recent finds. Excavations unearthed a campsite with firepit and more than 600 artifacts including stone tool fragments and arrowheads.
The area of the present-day city of Fredericton was first used for seasonal farming by the Maliseet peoples. Maliseet cultivated food plants including: beans, pumpkins, Jerusalem artichokes, ground nuts, and maize on the river banks and islands of the Saint John River. In the mid-18th century their principal village of Aucpaque was located several kilometres upriver from the site of present-day Fredericton.
Today Fredericton is an important cultural, artistic, and educational centre for the province. Musical, visual and performing arts play an integral role in the vibrancy of the city’s cultural core. Musically speaking, I always like to equate the east coast (especially Newfoundland) with Nashville. You just get the sense that everyone is attached to and bonded by music somehow. Everywhere ya go ya hear a “fiddle or two.”
Managed to squeeze in a workout around 3-4pm before heading to meet a good pal and his family for dinner. Carmela came down to join us and as she was introduced to my friend, Jeff’s wife, her hand hit a full glass of wine and it spilled all over her. Poor Carm, she was so embarrassed, however, I told them a little story of something that happened to me with a dear old pal and his new bride, to hopefully show that “not sweating it,” is a far better solution than freaking out over what is really a trivial accident.
I had a friend, Terry Lawson, who worked for Manhattan Records (our U.S. label ) back in the day. Terry became a dear, dear, friend, and I often used to visit with him in Fulton County, Georgia, where he lived. Manhattan Records was formed in 1984, by Bruce Lundvall, who enjoyed a career spanning half a century, Bruce signed a wide array of artists, including, Willie Nelson, Herbie Handcock, James Taylor, Richard Marx, Natalie Cole, Norah Jones and of course us, Glass Tiger. Bruce was the real deal. A legend in the business and real gentleman to boot.
Terry was the U.S. label’s, east coast, southern, record rep, and I went on to love the guy. He had a great love for movies and movie trivia, as do I, and a wonderful sense of humour and timing. We became good friends and we had such fun together. One day, out of the blue, while I was staying at his place in Fulton County Georgia he woke me up saying, “ Dude, let’s go! I want you to be my best man! I’ve decided to get married today!” That was Terry. And so off we went to Ringgold Georgia, a city in Catoosa County, population, 3,580 at the 2010 census and this story, of course, takes place way back in 1987, so one can only imagine what it’s population was then??
Just think of any old western movie that you have ever loved and THAT was Ringgold Georgia. At the wedding there was just Terry, his girlfriend and me and of course the Sheriff, complete with Stetson, gun-belt, holster and his six-shooter on his hip. After the wedding I decided to take them to dinner (which was very limited to say the least, but very tasty) During the beginning of the meal, I caused an accident, just like Carm’s spilling of the wine, only in my case, I knocked a candle over, setting fire to the “paper” table cloth, 😂 which quickly spread, causing a commotion. I immediately apologized after we got the flame extinguished citing the fact that I had, “spoiled the moment.” Terry immediately spoke up saying, “No you didn’t spoil the moment pal.....you just created another!” What a beautiful sentiment. I imparted this to Carm and Jeff’s family after the red wine was spilled over his wife and so now Carm, Jeff’s family and I will always remember the moment that was created, not spoiled.
Sadly, my dear, dear, dear, pal Terry, died suddenly after only enjoying 6 weeks of his marriage. It broke my heart and I still miss him dearly. He created one of the best “moments” of my life by being my friend ❤️
The delightful thing about tonights’s show is that the venue is across the street from the hotel and I mean, ACROSS, the street...some 50 ft!!!
A lovely little theatre, acoustically first class and our show went flawlessly much to the enjoyment of both band and audience. Standing ovation followed by an encore.
People continue to support CAMH (Centre for Addiction & Mental Health) THANK YOU GUYS!!
We had a few guests backstage with us afterwards for a drink and a chat then headed back to the hotel. Most of the guys bailed and went straight to bed, while I sat with Joe and Carmela for about 30 mins and a night-cap.
Tomorrow it’s your turn Moncton.
Until that time..... goodnight.