The Manning Family Visits The Delta Bohemians

Pontificus Minimus Opines

Wait! Stop! This really is about the Manning family visiting Pontificus and Magical Madge?

The Manning Family: Alex, Bill, , Olivia Kate and Trevor. Photo by The Delta Bohemian

The Manning Family: Alex, Bill, Renee, Olivia Kate and Trevor. Photo by The Delta Bohemian

Well, yeah! The Bill Manning family!

Native Clarksdalian Bill Manning graduated with Pontificus Minimus and Mr. Lil John in 1978. Bill headed to the Air Force Academy for a splendid career as an Air Force pilot, before going to work for FedEx; Mr. Lil John headed east to gain Division III football and academic Hall of Fame at Washington and Lee University before returning home as one of the region’s most progressive farmers (means he has more pocket protectors than any other straw boss), while Ole Pontificus headed off to Ole Miss where he dissipated into the Ole Miss Hall of Shame before slipping into complete and continuous ignominy.

Twas divergent paths the three lads took… Two were studious and one a rook…

Bill’s mother Patsy, a longtime resident of Clarksdale, passed away last week in North Carolina. Her three children were in Clarksdale with their families for the visitation at Meredith-Nowell Funeral home and the burial in Lambert.

Pontificus and Bill had not been in contact for over 30 years. Last Spring brought the two together in Clarksdale. The FedEx pilot had a short layover and training session in Memphis, so he decided to head south to the land that reared him. Magical Madge, Pontificus, and Mr. Lil John thoroughly enjoyed Bill’s company and were anxious for his next visit. Sadly, it involved his sweet mother’s passing.

The Manning family consists of Bill, his wife Renee, and their three children: Trevor, Alex, and Olivia Kate. The Delta Bohemians were thrilled to have warranted a visit by an awesome American family. Sitting in the rarely utilized living room–Poor William is more of a bedroom and kitchen/bar area fellow himself–the “loquacious seven” were never without words.

Pontificus has spent most of his adult life careening from one behavioral and ideological extreme to another. The one consistent belief he still holds tenaciously is his Judeo-Christian worldview. Regrettably, his behavior might not always reflect his beliefs, but his ideology and thought processes are deeply rooted in the Judeo-Christian God of the Bible.

Though Pontificus does a poor job “living out his faith” in meaningful and contributory ways, his friend Bill Manning does not. Bill and his family members all love the Lord, have great hopes and plans for their fulfillment as active members in God’s kingdom and they seem adept at bridging the gulf between the mythical-though-metaphysical 16th Century concepts represented by Renaissance Man and Reformation Man!

In a too-neatly-packaged synopsis of both, one discerns the appearance of irreconcilable distinctions. Renaissance Man is represented by the male or female who is knowledgeable and skillful in many areas. Reformation Man is seen as more consecrated in his or her approach to living a distinctly Christian life in a secular world. The two concepts often appear as polar extremes, but every now and then some folks are able to spin webs and threads linking the two.

The lowly grubber Pontificus Minimus believes the Mannings—corporately and individually—are able to synthesize the best of both concepts, enabling them to remain true to the One who brung ‘em while enjoying an exciting world full of wonder and possibilities.

At the first Bohemian dinner party held at the home where Pontificus lives among the shadowy doppelgangers of the Wegener family, the incredibly bright and numerous brood of peripatetic redheads who lived there prior, Bill confidently espoused his conservative, Judeo-Christian views while listening intently and reverently to others who shared dissimilar worldviews.

His children and muy-attractive wife also manifest extreme affability and earnest respect while conversing with others. Listening interactively, they ensure others’ words and thoughts are valued. It is a rare gift and a choice to be able to stick to one’s convictions when engaging and affirming others who think quite oppositely.

Mannings, we thank you for your grace and hope you will visit your old stomping grounds again real soon!

In summing up the Mannings, Pontificus’s more worldly sibling Poor William said it best, “There ain’t no crap in their necks.” Meaning, they are not full of themselves; they are good people.

God bless the MANNINGS, and Archie TOO! pm

Bill Manning in the Mississippi Delta. Photo by The Delta Bohemian

Bill Manning in the Mississippi Delta. Photo by The Delta Bohemian

Mr. Lil John McKee and Bill Manning by the Mississippi River in the Delta. Photo by The Delta Bohemian

Mr. Lil John McKee and Bill Manning by the Mississippi River in the Delta. Photo by The Delta Bohemian

THREE DELTA PILOTS - Dr. Victor Pang, Mr. Lil John McKee and Bill Manning. Photo by The Delta Bohemian

THREE DELTA PILOTS – Dr. Victor Pang, Mr. Lil John McKee and Bill Manning. Photo by The Delta Bohemian

 

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