A little more information

The two main activities in my life: Helping the hungry in the late hours of the night and helping guitar players sound better one amp at a time.

I always try to remember that in order to do good one has to take action and actually do something.

I was born and raised in Los Angeles. I have watched the city and Southern California change for well over half a century.

I can be found on facebook at www.facebook.com/mylesr or on twitter at www.twitter.com/myles111us or on my own Guitar Amplifier Blueprinting website at www.mylesrose.com

Los Angeles Architectural History

Los Angeles Architectural History
1935 Art Deco at some of its finest: No. 168 - Griffith Observatory- (click on the photo for information)

Monday, December 6, 2010

URM - The Christmas Story

My main blog begins with a few short statements ...

The two main activities in my life: Helping the hungry in the late hours of the night and helping guitar players sound better one amp at a time.

I always try to remember that in order to do good one has to take action and actually do something.

At the end of many of my blog posts you see the following footer in many of the blog posts ...

Myles Rose is the founder of Guitar Amplifier Blueprinting which provides support services and training for touring bands and individuals as well as blueprinting services.   You may contact me from the link.  My direct contact information is provided as well as links to two of the Internet forums where I answer technical questions.  You may also ask questions in any post in this blog by using the comment application on each post.

When I am not doing something related to music I do what I can to support the homeless of Los Angeles either directly on the streets at night or through my good friends at Union Rescue Mission.

I started walking the steets of Skid row in mid 2009. 

This year I will watch the events of the holiday season for the second year.  I had a great Thanksgiving participating in two events on skid row in Los Angeles thanks to http://www.urm.org/ and am ready for Christmas.

Thanksgiving and Christmas are difficult times for many in this ecomomy.  The economy has been taking a toll since about 2008 making things more difficult for higher numbers of people than ever before.  In 2009 URM documented an increase in services by over 40% as their revenue decreased by over 20%.    

In the last year I have made some changes in my life.  I now see the holidays through changed eyes. 

I have friends who live on the street.  I walk the streets of skid row in Los Angeles in the late evenings each week.  I work with the terrific folks at Union Rescue Mission during the day when I am not working on the music side of my life.

Union Rescue Mission is a faith based organization.   I would like to point out that you do not have to be faith based in your own life to receive a hot meal or help from them.  They help regardless of your faith or personal belief.

Initially I was somewhat concerned about working with URM or any faith based organization. 

My faith in the past was limited to turning my eyes upward or shutting them tightly in times of stress or danger.  I would not BS God.  My basic prayer was simple and from the heart:  Okay God, I am not going to bullshit you.  If you get me out of this I promise I will TRY to do what I can do to MAYBE be better. 

Yes, I am a mere mortal.  A human being with flaws who makes mistakes.  I was just trying to cover all bases.  I believe in the sea, the weather, my own training and abilities, my education received over the period of my passing years. 

When I think of religion and how it applies to me I think of phrases like God helps those that help themselves. 

During the last year I have observed with my own eyes and ears how faith has helped many people that had no direction or path in life.  People who had a path and lost their way.  People who could not understand how they had worked so hard their entire life yet lost everything.  People who lost their home to something that was not a fire, flood, tornado, gambling, drugs or alcohol.  They lost their home and career to the economy. 

I have seen people who had tried many things to turn their life around with one failure after another.  The people at Union Rescue Mission have their program that works for a lot of people.  Faith, guidance, education,  companionship and understanding from people with a program that has a proven track record works.

I see the results of the faith based programs but I still had the question.  Me?  Feel comfortable in a faith based organization? 

Looking back on my life I knew this might be a problem without an easy resolution.  Was the deck stacked against me?

I was raised in the Jewish faith yet ate pork products.  Ham, baby back pork ribs and shellfish were some of my mothers best meals out of her kitchen.  You have heard the jokes about Jewish cooks?  My mother did not fit the rule.  She is still an exceptional cook.

I hold minister credentials.  At one period in my life I was in a phase of collecting certificates and certifications.  This was not a religious undertaking.  I just wanted to see if I could pull it off.

As a child my family always celebrated Hanukkah AND Christmas.  There was a big shiny menorah and a Christmas tree that usually had to be cut down to fit in the house after purchase.  The tree was fully decked out in an impressive manner.

When we were children my parents would give the kids one present for each of the eight nights of Hanukkah.  Generally we received the things that as children we needed but did not actually want.  One night socks.  One night tighty whitey underwear. 

Christmas eve in our Jewish home was filled with cheer.  We would drink eggnog as we tried to guess what was in the boxes under the tree. 

One year my sister put Christmas carrols on the stereo as we were eating Christmas Eve dinner, a big glazed ham.  Christmas and Hanukkah overlapped that year or were close enough that the menorah was still in view next to the Christmas tree.  I turned to my sister and joked, I think this year we we went too far as I had just commented on the ham.  We turned off the Christmas music.

As children we found it hard to sleep on Christmas eve for all the usual reasons and we would wake mom and dad at the crack of dawn and open presents. 

If you were going to get a BIG gift, the bicycle or electric train, you received that gift on Christmas.

Over the last year I have become comfortable in a faith based organization. 

I think what made this possible was being around people who make changes in the lives of others every day. 

We differ in some ways of looking at things but share some of my views as well;  in order to do good one has to take action and actually do something. People that walk the walk and knowing people like Andy Bales, the CEO of Union Rescue Mission who not only walk the walk but lead the way for others to follow.  I follow his examples in many ways.

Below is a video from Union Rescue Mission.  It is the first of a series of videos they will be producing over the holidays.  As these videos are produced I will update this post with future videos.

Different people will see this video in different ways.  Some will see the story that is so common to so many.  Some will look at the child and possibly reflect on their own children or childhood. 

When I look at this video I see a child living in a shelter that was provided by Union Rescue Mission.   I think of people like many of you who have helped with donations to keep URM in operation. 

I see a child that can sit on a real bed in a heated room during the winter and act out her own beliefs while she feels safe and loved.

I have become comfortable working along side people in a faith based organization.  I still have my own beliefs.  The stars in the heavens are there to be used in H.O. 229/249 to guide man across the globe.  The stars were there long before GPS and will be there long after your GPS fails.  When the barometer falls quickly expect a change in the weather.  When the wind is blowing at 40 knots put another reef in the main sail.  These are laws of faith and physics that can keep you alive.

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