Better Beef and Bible

February 28, 2012

One highlight of my checkered past is serving on the pastoral team at Reedwood Friends. It gave me wonderful colleagues and a chance to reconnect with Portland after stints in Indiana and Massachusetts. Early on, when I needed to snag some supplies, I tried to call Better Book and Bible, a reliable store in my memory. So I looked for them in the phonebook. All I could find was “Better Beef and Bible.” A loud guffaw wasn’t enough. Curiosity made me drive to their shop.

The store itself, tucked between other city businesses, was modest but spacious. The middle was open, the ceiling high. On the left, I saw a butcher’s display case full of steaks, ribs, chops, burger, and sausages. The guy behind the counter wore his white outfit and almost white apron authoritatively. On the far facing wall, several shelves boasted Bibles for sale – varied versions, some boxed, some not, some with genuine leather covers, some with looks-like leather  covers, which, of course, I believed were genuine, too. This is the Bible after all. I already owned a Bible, so I didn’t look too closely. Besides, I didn’t really want to know if the covers were fresh.

I’ve come to enjoy discovering shops that offer odd pairings of goods and services. I suppose it happens a lot in small places, but it still entertains me. In Newberg we have “Sam’s Barber Shop & NW BBQ Co.” I haven’t tried the BBQ, but Sam gave me a nice haircut once. And a quick shampoo scrub washed the Chili Joe’s Hot Smoky BBQ Sauce right out. Some double-duty businesses make you cautious. Would it be safe to patronize the “Computer Repair / Karaoke Systems” place? How about breakfast at the hilltop “restaurant and auto parts” café? Would the ball-bearings omelet be safe and tasty? I’ve only seen it in a cartoon, but I’d probably avoid the dockside “Ken’s Bait and Sushi.”

Maybe you would like to create new business ideas for fun or to carve out a new market niche. For example, the guys who run “Midget Motors” in our town are pretty normal size. But they wouldn’t have to be. Or in farm country, how about opening a one-stop “Tractor and Tofu”? Without revealing your business secrets, perhaps you could share some ideas or places you’ve seen. Actually, sometimes, even when they make people laugh, unlikely combinations actually work. Like “Carpenter and Messiah.”

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Comments

Comments

  1. MRS.NIGERIAFINANCEMINISTER says:

    I AM HAVING SUCH A PLACE IN MY COUNTRY, ITIS CALLED “ER AND SWEATSHOP…WE’LL SEW ANYTHING”. IT IS MUCH NEED MONEY TO KEEPSTITCH THINGS TOGETHER, PLEASE YOU ARE GIVING ME YOUR BANK ACCOUNT NUMBER TO HELPING THESE HUMANITARIAN MISSIONAL, COME WITH FREE T-SHIRT OR SEWN FINGER.

  2. Sharayah B says:

    Sam’s always makes me think of Sweeney Todd…

  3. mauriMacy says:

    Fred’s Fill Dirt and Croissants. (fictional…but nice)
    RV Repair and Tanning Bed – use ta’ be in Garibaldi, OR

Living in Fun

"Walking Cheerfully" is place to think out loud about how to use and enjoy humor in positive, life-giving ways. We’ll explore how following Christ in all of life can shape, not scuttle, laughter and creative play. What might it mean to laugh with others as you would have them laugh with you?

Probably the other most common posts will be "Finds in Fun." I first learned the phrase “being in fun” from Tom Mullen’s Laughing Out Loud and Other Religious Experiences. He points to the playfulness of children, who are readier to laugh and to see the silly than most adults. Living each day “in fun” often makes us laugh as we slog through a nearly endless supply of things odd, silly, klutzy, and preposterous. The stories here are mostly from my own ordinary, “in fun” days.

Fun Nooks and Crannies

There’s “Humor in the Bible,” and these posts explore where it is, how to find it, and what to do with it. It’s one way of thinking about how to read the Bible well.

Since a lot of us spend big chunks of time at work, the “Humor at Work” posts will suggest ways to stay sane and happy, to get along with cow-orkers, and to use humor to do good work.

I’m a book-pusher at heart, and some of my best friends push books, too. I even know some folks who read. So “Fun Books” posts will tell about books that are funny and help us think about humor.

Sometimes I’ll brag on some of the friends I’ve been given or share some photos I’ve enjoyed taking. Maybe you’ll laugh, maybe not, but they’ve brought joy in my journey.

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