All posts by Jeff Bingham

I am a happily married father of 3. CPA. Employed by my alma mater. I value faith, family, fun, football, and following sports of all types.    I tend to live vicariously through my kids, as it seems their young lives contain such rich experiences.     I try to remember that they are kids, with all of the hurts, struggles, emotions, and confusion that go along with that. I love to travel, take pictures, and reminisce. Blogging seems to be just a natural extension of that, and if I’m able to process life’s tougher times and bless some others in the process, then it’s worthwhile.

House Blend, Anyone?

Coffee as an analogy for life?    Some would suggest that coffee is life, and I would concur at times.    For certain, life often begins each day after a first cup, but today I wish to ponder it before I drink it.

As I prepared yesterday’s first “nectar of life” carafe, I considered the description: “House Blend.  Lively.  Balanced.  Intensity: Medium.

What better way to describe my desired persona in the Bing Dynasty?   Having lived at times like some other less desirable coffees, strong, bitter, heavy after taste, I prefer to be the “House Blend.”

Another desirable analogy is fruit: nourishing, refreshing, appealing, “juicy,” and at it’s heart, a seed ready for planting.

But the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, forbearance, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness and self-control. Against such things there is no law.  Galatians 5:22-23.

Certainly, if not coffee, I’d rather be compared to fruit vs. a fruitcake, but I digress.

If you will excuse me now, I need to go brew up a pot of the magic elixir.   It’s about time for life to begin on a hot Monday in Oklahoma…

What Would You Do? Musing Over the National Debt Ceiling, Delta Airlines and Personal Hunger.

The question had been reverberating around in my head for the past few days, and tonight, it was put to the test. What would you do?

What would you do for a Klondike Bar? It’s a famous jingle, and you likely can recall some of the TV commercials of people doing outlandish things for these frozen delicacies.

What would you do if…?

What would you do for…?

A topic of frequent conversation at the non-profit management symposium I’ve participated in this week has been “the Federal Government and the infighting over the national debt ceiling.”

What if they can’t agree? What if the leadership prime directive, much like the medical practitioner’s Hypocratic Oath of “First, Do No Harm,” breaks down? What if this high stakes game of federal budget chicken results in a full-speed head-on collision like the one in Minnesota? Who gets hurt? What might the collateral damage be? How long might it last?

So many questions, so little true leadership. Pardon the digression diatribe.

A small group of us got down to brass tacks last night discussing what such an event would cause in the macro economy. Certainly, like in times past, the national government would shut down, but this would go much further than the temporary closing of Yellowstone Park and the like.

The U.S. Treasury would be out of money. They would default on bond payments. They would not be able to pay Social Security benefits. They would not be able to fund federally issued college student loans. Yikes! What if it happened this week, and they could not pay air traffic controllers and all commerce and travel were to stop? How would I get home? 1,500+ miles away from Edmond, America, how would I get back to the Little Frau and our Kinder? It made me recall those classic John Candy moments in the back of the polka band truck as “Kevin’s mom” hitchhiked back to her son in “Home Alone 1”.

Well, we finished our conversation, and I actually forgot all about the what if’s and headed to the airport this afternoon for the trip home to Edmond, America and the folks I love.

Then, it happened. Continue reading What Would You Do? Musing Over the National Debt Ceiling, Delta Airlines and Personal Hunger.

The Pizza Song

The Bings may be somewhat described as Puritans, but never with a Puritanical attitude, mind you. That is true for major life choices, and for the seemingly simple things as well. Every day things, like choices in music. We mostly listen to Christian music, but enjoy a classic 80’s rock tune every now and then. One of our favorites is affectionately referred to by the family as “the pizza song,” for said pure reasons:

We love simple things, like pizza, and we love us some Hideaway.

First off, a bit of historical context is in order. Little Frau and I met one another in the hinterlands south of the Red River, and our second date was in one of those classic double-decker Pizza Huts that were all the rage back in the day. And, for such a tiny young lady, she could down half a large pepperoni and multiple glasses of Dr. Pepper with the best of them. As a college student, she could eat that way, oh, every night.

Hold on, for the story changes from here. Fast forward to the era of the 2000’s, and 4 out of the 5 Bings have turned out to be exclusive Gluten-free (GF) diners out of medical necessity. Said diagnosis and lifestyle was was not deemed necessary until the love of pizza by all Bings was deep and strong. And in Oklahoma, this pizza yearning has been like being thirsty in the middle of the ocean. Water everywhere, but none that won’t kill you if consumed.

It has been quite a Journey. You see, More cosmopolitan or “urbane” locales like Colorado, Kansas City, or even the hinterlands surrounding Austin, Texas have been blessed with multiple GF pizza options for quite some time. But, not Oklahoma. Not till now. Continue reading The Pizza Song

“Breaking Down” the Eisenhower Interstate Highway System

The I-40 “Crosstown.”    Almost every Central Oklahoman has heard about it, not because of where it goes (across town, duh) but what it is doing.  And that what is falling apart.   Before we get into that, let’s go over some history.

The recent family vacation took the Bings through middle America and the Deep South, mostly courtesy of the interstate highways that crisscross our great land.   We are all familiar with those little blue shield signs, each bearing the trademark large white font number, and a distinctive “East,” “West,” “North,” or “South.”    I heard about the origins of the system that slightly predated my mid 1960’s initial existence and the man who signed them into being, but I had never seen it promoted on location.    But, as our trip brought us closer to home after about 1,500 miles of sojourning, I saw it at the entrance to a beautiful southern rest stop deep into Mississippi:  “Eisenhower Interstate System”.

According to our informative friends at Wikipedia, “The Interstate Highway System was authorized by the Federal-Aid Highway Act of 1956. The opening of Interstate 70 in Colorado through Glenwood Canyon in 1992 is often cited as the completion of the originally planned system The initial cost estimate for the system was $25 billion over 12 years; it ended up costing $114 billion (adjusted for inflation, $425 billion in 2006 dollars).”

I don’t know about you, but I find both $114 billion and $425 billion to be large sums of money. And yet, it is not enough. Continue reading “Breaking Down” the Eisenhower Interstate Highway System