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August 5, 2015

Cigars and Blogs: Best of the Bull Edition.

2 Things:

1. New AshWednesdays Vid is up

2. Bull City Cigars got the "Best of the Bull" award for August given out by local blogger Katelyn Phillips.

Check out the feature here: Best of the Bull

August 4, 2015

Cigar Etiquette 101: Don't be THAT guy.

There are just certain things to know about what to do and what not to do in a cigar lounge. Someone has got to speak the truth, right? #AshWednesdays.

Stay Ashy Friends!

June 9, 2015

Church Ideas that Must Die

I copied and pasted this right from google images

This is an artile that I contributed in my church newsletter (I often write in the church newsletter. I find it's a great way to communicate ideas to my local context as well as establish myself a thought-leader). I just thought I should post it here. I don't usually do that, but I figured since I spent the time to write it then I should post it in other places as well. 

Smartphones iwhat n church. That’s I want.

I would love to see people snapping photos of churchy things and sharing them all over the World Wide Web. Hashtag the heck out of church (i.e. #JesusisRad or #Jesusismyhomeboy), choose whatever # you’d like.. Snap it, edit it, flip it, put a filter on it, tweet it, retweet it, post it, comment on it,  blog it, vlog it, review it, record it, check-in, pin it, do whatever you’d like but share, share, share! It’s 2015 people and this is the world we live in. We live in an iOS8 world, why do we need to preserve the Windows 95 experience for worship? We share everything else that is special, wonderful and important to us; so why can’t we do that in church?

Smartphones are distracting you might say. Really?!?! Are you telling me everyone is paying attention and not thinking of anything else in those pews? Is there nothing else to be distracted by in church? What if, just what if, the use of smartphones in the congregation enhanced the worship experience? Think it might be possible?

Next time the preacher is preaching, whip out that phone. Maybe there’s something sweet in the sermon that you love and think some of your friends might think too. What if you’re kneeling at the altar with that host in your palm and before consuming it you look over and someone else is doing the same but focusing their camera phone taking a picture of it first? Would that be so bad? Would it really? It’s a beautiful, mysterious and often transcendent moment. Why wouldn’t someone want to not share that? Some of us are more introverted than others, I get that, but social media has shown us that even those people like to share, post, and blog.

What do you think? Think there are other ideas that need to die that impede progress in areas of faith and/or church?

Peace be with you!

Follow me on Twitter and/or Instagram @Metromonk

May 13, 2015

AshWednesdays: It's About Cigars.

Some people don't know this about me, but I have recently been sustaining a video series called "Ash Wednesdays." It's all about the cigars. 

Posted here is the latest video. 

It is a fascinating culture. I would love your comments. Heck, reach out and let's grab a stick and enjoy that together.

Peace be with you. 

Thanks for stopping by. 

April 27, 2015

The Great Equalizer

A Cigar.

You ever smoke a cigar? I meet a lot of folks whom tell me that they enjoy a stick on occasion. And I get that. It's a special occasion and some folks treat themselves to the largest tobacco stick they can get their hands on, makes sense right? Right.

That said, I am a cigar smoker. Not the occasional smoker either, but "humo frecuentemente." As in, I enjoy sticks on the regular. And, while I am at it, let me take a few lines to say that smoking cigars IS NOT the same as smoking cigarettes. Not all smoking is created equal. Cigarettes are much worse than cigars as far as "junk"goes. They are cut with so much other fillers, impurities and other chemical garbage. Cigarettes taste different too. I have no intention on alienating cigarette smokers out there, but someone has to call a spade a spade. The two, cigars and cigarettes, are like comparing apples to oranges. Scratch that, because neither are healthy. Let's try that again. Maybe the comparison is more closely compared to bourbon and King Cobra (you know, the 40 oz. malt liquor drink). The bourbon, like the cigar, represents pure goodness, but not exactly healthy for you. The cigarettes would be like King Cobra, it's the king of junk liquor. End of my rant. Let's move on.

Smoking cigars.

If you "humo frecuentemente" like me, than you have probably enjoyed some time at a local cigar lounge with others, because you know that smoking is best optimized while smoking with others.

I have yet to be ceased of amazement while visiting a local cigar shop/lounge, because the same thing happens everywhere, all the time.

It goes like this, I grab a cigar, sit in the lounge, light it up and enjoy, and then I just sit and wait, listen and engage. It doesn't matter who you are or what you do. It doesn't matter if you're black or white, brown or yellow. It doesn't matter if you're right or left, red or blue. It doesn't matter your politics, your religion or if you're rich or poor. You could be male or could be female, old or young. You could be an experienced aficiando or you may not be. All of it does not matter. What does matter is that you have a stick. If you have that, you're are part of the circle.

I've visited many cigar shops and lit up plenty of sticks around many a bonfire. I don't know why it is so, but it's the greatest equalizer. I have heard so many life stories and made some great friends along the way and all because we smoke cigars together. It's the only thing I know that cuts the socio-religio-politico-economic barriers like it does. Not even religion brings brings completely random people together like the cigar world does. The only communities that I can think of that might pull off something close would be beer drinkers or pot smokers.

It's a crazy bunch that meet to sit and smoke cigars. And sure, there are lots of disagreements that occur, but at the end of it all, it's all good, because...well...cigars. It mellows all of it. We disagree, but then we'll be back, because...well...cigars. It's the great equalizer. Maybe it's a better mediator. Maybe it's both. Whatever it is it just works. It works every single time.

I love all the "Brothers and Sisters of the Leaf." The whole thing isn't anything about being addicted to smoking. It's a community thing. It's a crew thing. It's about similar interests, It's about a time to lounge. It's about the conversations. Maybe it's an escape for some or it's a place of work for another, but whichever it is, it is always a treat.

Ironically, the whole cigar culture thing is smitten with an image. That's real and maybe it looks a little too pretentious to some. But really though, no one is going to cast anyone out due to the size (or lack thereof) of ones bank account. It's about what's in your hand, not your wallet.

It's just like what Digital Underground said, "All around the world, the same song."

Please leave comments and thoughts below. 

See more of, what I call, "The Cigar Hustle" at Youtube. I host a series called "Ash Wednesdays."

Maybe you'd now like to order some really good cigars. The tobacco is premium and it's so good. So go ahead and take a-looksie at

Connect with me on more social media platforms @metromonk. 

Peace be with you!.

April 1, 2015

We love all the Brothers and Sisters of the Leaf

Every time we're out on the scene with cigars in our hands we meet the coolest people. It's never ceases to amaze me.

November 19, 2014

The Advent of Advent

taken from pinterest

With the advent of Advent, the church calendar marks a change in season. We enter into a season of waiting, expectantly, for the arrival of the Messiah, the Christ child; Emmanuel, the Lord with us.

Outside, the leaves change and fall to the ground as the chill of winter settles in. Nature’s growth comes to a halt. We pull the sweaters out, and put the gloves on; we are zipped, buttoned and wrapped; ready for a new season.

As fall disappears and winter enters, we Christians also enter a new season. A season to pause in hope for the long-awaited Messiah - Christ our king, born from heaven, ushered in through Mary in a stable. We prepare for the Messiah that had long been prophesied about in the Scriptures, the Messiah, for whom the Jews had longed. It is a season of waiting and preparation.

Yet we live in a society that abhors waiting. Instant satisfaction is our mantra - fast food, 4G, DVR to fast forward through the commercials. Imagine a world where we go back to dial-up! And the stores are already rolling - it seems the holiday decorations were out before the end of October. Heck, some of my friends put up Christmas trees right after Halloween. Say what!?

Advent is more than just the processional countdown to Christmas Day. It is a season in itself. A season to slow down, live into, remain present.

Looking for a way to abide in the season of Advent? My shameless plug - participate in our faith community project the “Advent Baton.”  By following the Advent Baton on Instagram, or volunteering to carry the baton for a day, you can share in the ways individuals observe Advent in their daily lives. Search to see it what it looks like. There’s a Signup Genius for scheduling who has the baton for every day in Advent. It’s a small commitment, but 25 voices together sharing our faith online a NO small feat! Contact me for more information.

Peace be with you!

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