The World According to Greg
The featured image in The World According to Greg stories and posts in chronological order from beginning to the present
Hello World!The World According to Greg began as an exercise to prove to my boss that a website and SEO placement could be done in-house. The Story of Me is the Story of UsThe World According to Greg is a blend of genealogy, history, current events, politics, religion, education, and, well, you name it. And trains. There are several parts to this project. First, there is the raw data. Even more exciting — or touching, or gripping, or sad, perhaps — are the stories and things that bring us together as a family, that try to explain the meaning of our lives, or, are just plain funny. Or touching. Or gripping. Or sad.We Were On a Break …My first — and last — post here was in 2014 almost five years ago. Okay, so it wasn’t all that short of a break, but I had a reason. Several of them, actually. Happy ThanksgivingFunny the kinds of things we remember out of our past, and as we celebrate another Thanksgiving, what are the little memories you bring to the table?Whenever Two or More Are Gathered …It all started back in the early 1990s at University Christian Church in Berkeley, California.Apparently, I’m Not KoreanMy first foray into genealogy and ancestry research came as a 9 year-old fourth grader at John Enders Elementary School in Garden Grove, California. It was at the dinner table, perhaps over pork chops, Kraft macaroni and cheese, and mixed vegetables that I proudly informed my parents that I was Korean.The “Celebrities” Among UsWe all remember Lois Lane from the Superman sagas in comic books, on television, and in the movies. Smart, tough-as-nails, and tenacious, the world might never have discovered who the Man of Steel really was behind those glasses had it not been for the star reporter for the Daily Planet newspaper.My Parents and GrandparentsActually, none of the people in the photo were parents or grandparents of mine. Enter the good folks at WikiTree, of whom I am proud to be a member. When the World is Out of this WorldLocated near Mt. Lassen National Park in Northern California, the Allen Telescope Array (funded by the late Paul Allen) searches for extra-terrestrial signals from outer space. Makes you wonder what in the world those from beyond Earth must be thinking as they listen in on us. Just Who Was James Dudymott?Most of my family tree branches go back several hundred years. The Dudymott lineage, on the other hand, is another story. James Dudymott was born in Pennsylvania in 1812. At that point, the Dudymott name turns into what genealogists call a dead end.Merry ChristmasChristmas has not been always been that joyous of an occasion for me over the years. Still, Christmas has its moments, family traditions that only the family would understand and appreciate and covet, children discovering and rediscovering Santa Claus, or whatever is special for you.The Begatin’ ManBased on family oral history it is highly likely that I am related to William Jennings Bryan but exactly how is still not quite clear from the documentary evidence. This points out an important factor to consider when doing genealogy research, namely that one cannot sit in front of a computer and expect perfect, full, and complete answers. Whatever Happened to Customer Service?A couple recent incidents have sparked this question, and I name names.At Home in the UniverseAll people, at all times, must have created myths and stories to sketch a picture of our place under the sun. As I would ask myself what is the purpose of life and what is my role in that purpose, I came to wonder who in my past sat around a campfire and asked those same questions.It’s Okay to PrayAside from the fact that their Bible calls those who demand a return to prayer in schools hypocrites for demanding such public prayer (Matthew 6:5-6), it’s also just not true that prayer is banned from high school football. At least not in God-fearing California. I Am Not a Crook, But I Am Your CousinAn essential skill in genealogical and family history work is an appreciation for detail and a passion for investigation. We Didn’t Start the Fire …An example of my outdoor model train layout projectsNo. One. Else: Trump and ImpeachmentWho knew this would become a recurring topic?Revenge of the Napkin BuildersIt was six years ago to this very day that someone joined our little train group but didn’t last long. Keep in mind we’re a pretty chill group of mostly older men who still play with trains.I’m Sticking with JoePeople keep asking me who I’m voting for. The overriding question for me has also always been the ability to beat Trump, hold the House, and take back the Senate, and for awhile it seemed like Biden might go down for the count. South Carolina changed all that, and so I’m sticking with Joe. Consider the SourceWhether it is incredulous politicians or innocent and well-meaning genealogists and family historians, as we navigate the sometimes difficult pathway between truth and assumption, we must always consider the source.I Always Figured It’d Be Trains …The long lost hobbies people around the world people are revisiting during the coronavirus pandemicBehold! The New ChurchIs this the new church? Probably. And just as probable, like pretty much everything in the church, change will not come quickly or easily, but, yeah, this is the new church.“You Didn’t Build That:” A Day in the Life of Joe RepublicanPresident Obama stirred up a bit of controversy on the campaign trail in 2012 when he said people succeed because of our individual initiative, but also because we do things together. For the Last Time, Newsom is Not Pelosi’s NephewSometimes, genealogy can be used not only to prove family relationships, but also to disprove it. Case in point: if you follow California wing nuts you have no doubt heard that our governor Gavin Newsom is Speaker Nancy Pelosi’s nephew. Uh, no. He’s not.Two Smirking YahoosDoes CAHOOTS work everywhere? Probably not — every community will have their own particulars to work out — but it’s a much better starting point for meaningful discussion and reform than two smirking yahoos. What do you think?William and FrancesWe often think of the westward movement as Manifest Destiny and its movers and shakers as noble pioneers. It wasn’t always that way.No Longer a Laughing Matter [Updated January 2021]…It was easy to laugh at Trump and his followers because we knew it couldn’t last. But now it’s no longer funny as the blood of Americans is in their hands.Mama Didn’t Raise No Fool, But She May Have Raised a WilsonOne of the things I tell clients and those interested in family history and genealogy is to be prepared for what you might find. Case in point: me. That Sound You Hear …The response to Sidney Powell’s admission that no reasonable person would believe her claims of electoral fraud proves the existence of what I now call AINOs — Americans in Name Only. It’s sad to see people you love reduced to this spectacle of their own doing.Sarah Skinner Spittoon SpitterSarah Skinner McIntyre was a bad-ass woman who lived to almost one hundred. Which brings me to my daughter Lindsay, a bad-ass woman herself, who carries on the tradition of strong, talented, independent, kind, and powerful family women in ways that continue to amaze me and for which I am so proud to be a part of. Speaking of Bad-Ass Women …She’s as bad-ass as they come. In fact, she was born bad-ass, following a long line of bad-ass women, like her mother, her grandmothers, and the generations of strong, smart, powerful women before them. Of course, she’s only two, so there’s bound to be a certain amount of figuring out of stuff along the way, but with a face like this, who can doubt she’s going to rule the world some day.On the Road Again …ln the span of less than twenty-four hours, I found myself going from embarking on a spiritual virtual journey across the Iberian peninsula to being unable to legally physically drive to the supermarket.A Time to Stand Up and Be CountedMy first post-9/11 sermon, delivered at Cottage Way Christian Church in Sacramento, California on Sunday, September 16, 2001. Has it stood the test of time?The Curse of the Hile MalesIt’s not just the pretty face. Things just happen to us that we can’t always explain. Westward BoundI never really got to know my great grandmother. I do remember the day she died. It was the first time I ever saw my dad cry.