Silly Daddy's Offspring of Oats

Silly Daddy Offspring of Oats comic by Joe Chiappetta

The world of work is always teaching us new things. This Silly Daddy comic comes fresh out of the oven of employment life. While flexing her stone-ground organically grown muscles, my nutrition-minded daughter declared, "I'm learning so much about healthy eating at my new job at an organic bakery. I just found out that oats don't really have a long shelf life. Do you know what that means? We've been eating stale oatmeal our entire lives! It's tragic."

Don't you wish you had such a helpful daughter who could educate you on how to eat better and dodge the tragedies of the world--all while earning an income? I thank God for her.

Comic drawn by Joe Chiappetta on a Samsung Note 3 phone, 2014

Mighty Messianic Prophecy - Book Ordering Page

Book cover for Mighty Messianic Prophecy: A Biblical Study of Predictions Proving that Jesus Is God, written by Joe Chiappetta
Tired of being baffled by the Bible? Discover how the story of Jesus has been thinly yet astonishingly veiled in the Old Testament and just waiting for you to gain a rich appreciation into the very nature of God.

Mighty Messianic Prophecy:
A Biblical Study of Predictions Proving that Jesus Is God

A book by Joe Chiappetta
This Christian study guide is a non-fiction, no-nonsense, non-stop examination of the predictions proving Jesus to be the definitive and only Lord for all people and all nations. The identity of the Messiah, Jesus Christ, is revealed through a deeper understanding of the hundreds of Bible verses which point directly to the coming of our Savior, who is the Son of God and God in the flesh.
If the prophecies from Moses to Malachi are often an unsolved mystery for you, this book uses plain language, clear biblical references, and logical commentary explain God's Word. Build your faith and knowledge as to how God has been calling out to mankind with specific truths regarding Jesus since the Garden of Eden. Starting with the very first prophecy, get your answers in Genesis and all the prophets as they point to Jesus with uncanny consistency. Chapters and topics covered include the following:
  • Lost in the Future or Anchored to the Ancient Book
  • Will the Real Scriptures Please Stand Up?
  • From Defective to Faithful Footing
  • Messianic Questions
  • Definitions of Biblical Terms
  • Short List of Messianic Prophecies Fulfilled
  • Why Is Messianic Prophecy So Valuable?
  • List of Prophecies about the Resurrection
  • The Very First Prophecy about Jesus
  • Supernatural Lineage
  • God Has a Son, and That's a Big Deal
  • The Son of God Is God the Father
  • Father and Son Questions: Answering the Skeptics
  • The Anointed One Is Set Above
  • Statements, Dreams, Visions, and Events
  • Amos on the Messiah
  • The Radical Relevance of the Old Testament
  • Zechariah Nails It
  • The Messiah is the Branch
  • Rebuilding and Reforming under Zerubbabel and Jesus
  • Men Symbolic of Things to Come
  • What about People Who Never Heard of Jesus?
  • The Fate of Non-Christians
  • The Global Importance of Jesus
  • Are You Still Doubting God?
  • Where Have All the Mighties Gone?
  • God Is Mighty
  • Jesus Is Mighty
  • Men and Women Can Be Mighty
Mighty Messianic Prophecy is loaded with theological analysis of many Bible predictions never before discussed as messianic prophecies. Be inspired by a book designed to leave you rock-solid about who our Rock and Redeemer really is: Jesus the Christ. Award-winning author Joe Chiappetta holds up the scriptures with an evangelistic style that will have you bookmarking, memorizing, and sharing these faithful insights with your family, friends, and anyone else willing to explore the Gospel like never before.

Genesis Jam cover for Christian magazine

Genesis Jam cover art by Joe Chiappetta
Here is the original cover art (without title text) for the Genesis Jam eBook anthology that we published. Taking place in the Garden of Eden, this ink on paper cover shows Eve, the very first woman, holding a piece of nice, ripe fruit right before she decides to eat it.

For those following the Star Chosen universe, this book has (among other neat features) a self-contained biblical sci-fi short story called "Star Chosen and the Discovery of Eden."

Disability Awareness at Work

Create an inclusive environment! This slideshow will help you to effectively communicate and be comfortable while interacting with customers and staff who have disabilities.
Topics covered include the following:
  • Disability population
  • Disability consumer market
  • Communication tips for full inclusion
  • Disability category overview
People with disabilities are the largest US minority population (US Census Bureau 2002). One out of 5 Americans has a disability, and disability cuts across all races, cultures, and every other minority category. As such, this training is essential for both non-profit and for-profit companies as well as their supplier partners.

It's also must-have information for everyone who works with the public or as part of a team. Moreover, being respectful, wise, and fully inclusive to people with disabilities will make you a better human being!

Transcript of Disability Awareness slideshow:

Disability Awareness at Work, by Joe Chiappetta

Disability "Ah-Ha" Moment
-  Everyone needs an "Ah-Ha" moment
-  Have you had yours yet?

What's Your 1st Memory of Disability?

King Kong of Minority - Disability Population
- 56.7 million in US have disability
(US Census Bureau 2010)
- About 1 out of 5 have disability in US (19%)
- Largest US minority population
- Over 1 billion worldwide
(World Health Organization 2011)

Percent of Labor Force
- 19% of US population has disability
- Yet only 6% are working
Source: 2013 US Census Bureau analysis of 2010 data
Fun with Disability Spending

WHY Disability Awareness Training?
- Discretionary spending = $220 billion (US Census Bureau 2002)
- Cuts through all races
- Your customers and co-workers
- You (accidents and sudden illness)
- Your children

Customer Views on Disability at Work
(University of Massachusetts 2005)
- 87% prefer to give business to companies that employ people with disabilities.
- 98% of those served by a worker with a disability were very satisfied or satisfied with service received.

Companies who have Employee Resource Groups (ERGs) on Disability
- Blue Cross and Blue Shield
- Deloitte
- Ernst & Young
- PepsiCo
- Sodexo
- Walgreens
- and many more

Employee Resource Groups (ERGs) on Disability
Help Companies to...
- Market products/services to people with disabilities
- Review policies/processes that impact people with disabilities
- Increase accessibility of technology, physical space, and overall work environment
- Raise awareness of workplace issues affecting people with disabilities
- Recruit/hire/promote employees with disabilities

Disability History Crash Course
- 1400 BC: First disability law:
"Do not curse the deaf..."
- 1700s England: Work or whipping
- 1918 Smith-Sears Act: Help US vets with disabilities get jobs
- 1973 Rehabilitation Act (US):
No discrimination in federal programs
- 1990 Americans with Disabilities Act (Civil rights to stop discrimination)

Americans with Disabilities Act
- Law passed in 1990 (ADA)
- Amended in 2008 (ADAAA)
- Employers with 15 or more employees must comply
- ADA Title 1 (employment) enforced by U.S. Equal
Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC)
- Job Accommodation Network: free technical assistance

QUIZ: Disability Definition under ADA
(choose best answer)
(A) a physical or mental impairment that substantially limits one or more of the major life activities of such individual;
(B) a record of such an impairment; or
(C) being regarded as having such an impairment.
(D) All of the above

Major Life Activities (ADAAA)
Includes, but not limited to...
- Caring for self, performing manual tasks, seeing, hearing, eating, sleeping, walking, standing, lifting, bending, speaking, breathing, learning, reading, concentrating, thinking, communicating, working
- Major bodily functions of immune system, normal cell growth, digestive, bowel, bladder, neurological, brain, respiratory, circulatory, endocrine, reproductive functions

ADA Legal Requirements
- Makes employer job discrimination against people with disabilities illegal
- Covers recruitment, pay, hiring, firing, promotion, job assignments, training, leave, lay-off, benefits, all other employment related activities
- Person with disability must be qualified to perform essential functions of job with or without reasonable accommodation
- Not a Transitory Impairment (expected to last more than 6 months)

Disability Documentation
- Medical documentation may be needed to determine what, if any, reasonable accommodations are needed.
- Entire medical history is not needed.
- Manager should work closely with HR to ensure that all aspects of the policy and law are complied with.

People First Language Quiz
Pick the right terms. "I see that he is..."
- A mentally retarded person.
- One of those slow people.
- A person with an intellectual disability.
- A Cripple.
- Confined to a wheelchair.
- A handicapped person.
- A person who uses a wheelchair.

More People First Examples
- People with disabilities,
not "disabled people"
- Person with a visual impairment
- Person with hearing loss
- Person with mental illness
- Person with epilepsy
- Person with arthritis

Emphasize Abilities
- Would you like to be known for your strengths or your worst fault?
- Living with a disability can increase adaptability.
- Diverse abilities and backgrounds broaden company viewpoints.

Is it OK to say...
- "Let's take a walk," to someone who uses a wheelchair?
- "I'd like to shake hands," to someone who is blind?
- "I'll see you later," to someone who is blind?
- "Here doggie, doggie," to someone with a service animal?

Eye Level Equality
When talking with person who uses wheelchair or person of short stature...
- Sit down if possible.
- Then continue talking.
- If no chair is available, those able to get on one knee can do so.

Fatigue Factor
Who gives 100% every single day? Capabilities vary based on health and life circumstances--for everyone. Factors include:
- Stress
- Weather
(extreme heat/cold)
- Change in medication

Non-Apparent (Invisible) Disabilities
- Not always evident that person has disability. 33 million in US
(Johns Hopkins U. 2001)
- Diabetes, Learning Disability, Multiple Sclerosis,

Fibromyalgia, Mental Illness
- If co-worker questions accommodation, say, "What we're doing is consistent with business necessity."
- Be alert, kind, and patient.

Deaf Awareness Quiz (True/False)
- Lip reading typically yields 95% accuracy?
- Tapping on shoulder to get attention is appropriate?
- Flicking light switch is OK to get attention?
- Look at sign language interpreter when talking to person who is deaf?
- Captioning all videos is important?

Visual Impairment Quiz (True/False)
- Eye contact is not important?
- Grabbing someone's white cane is OK when escorting them?
- Pointing for directions works best?
- Images in documents and on your website need no extra coding to be accessed?

Wheelchair Wisdom - Wheelchair Quiz (True/False)
- If a stroller can get up a ramp or through an aisle, then so can a wheelchair?
- Resting your arm on another's wheelchair is a sign of trust?
- Pushing someone in a wheelchair is always considerate?

Mental Illness Quiz (True/False)
- Only doctors know how to best reduce workplace stress?
- If someone is on medication, they're not work-ready?
- Not interviewing well is a strong indication of low skills?
- Having a single contact person for accommodations is best?

Developmental Disabilities and Social Skills
Developmental Disability and Learning Disability Quiz (True/False)
- Being direct is best? (Tell me what I'm doing right/wrong.)
- Visual learners can't keep up?
- Quiet environments are best to communicate?
- Repetition is very helpful?
- Explaining what happens during a work break would be helpful?

Reasonable Accommodation Crash Course (ADA Title 1)

Reasonable Accommodation is for...
- Employers of 15 or more employees
- All state/local government employers
- Person who is qualified (with or without accommodation)

Reasonable Accommodation is...
Change to job or workplace allowing person to:
- Participate in job app process
- Perform essential functions of job

Reasonable Accommodation is NOT
- Tolerating violent or abusive behaviors
- Non-adherence to fundamental policies and procedures
- Personal services (toileting, feeding, medications, wheelchairs)
- Undue hardship: Significant admin or financial burden
- Allowing direct threat to health/safety

Cost of Accommodations
- 57% of accommodations cost absolutely nothing to make.
- The rest typically cost only $500.
- Source: Job Accommodation Network in survey of 590 employers
(2011 “Low Cost, High Impact” study)

Reasonable Accommodation Prep: Does your company have...
- Reasonable accommodation policy?
- Centralized reasonable accommodations fund?
- Central staff point of contact on disability issues?
- Familiarity with accommodation resources like ?

Employee Accommodation Steps
Employee makes request
Manager writes it (or ask employee to)
Health info: Keep confidential!
Is more info needed on medical condition or accommodation?
If request isn’t reasonable, enter interactive process
Both parties explore effective accommodation options
Start accommodation
Follow up to ensure success

The Request Includes...
- Nature of disability
- Reason for request
- Specific accommodation requested
- Medical info if necessary

Request doesn't have to be in writing but having it written, dated, and signed establishes clarity.

Disability Awareness: From Triple Play to Home Run
1) Annual disability training for staff
2) People with disabilities are hired and retained by your company.
3) Customers with disabilities seek your business because of your disability-friendly culture.
4) Your company becomes an industry leader, which leads to national publicity (and world domination).

Joe Chiappetta
Comics by Joe Chiappetta are copyright 2013

How to Ask for a Job: a Flashcard on Approaching Employers for People with Developmental Disabilities

How to Ask for a Job - a Flashcard on Approaching Employers for People with Developmental Disabilities - comic by Joe Chiappetta
Designed to accelerate the job seeking process, this cartoon is a visual aid to help people with developmental disabilities (like autism) or other social/communication challenges. For a large number of more visual learners, an illustrated script can be useful in practicing what to say when trying to find employment in the community.
A simplified outline of how to ask employers for a job can go something like this:
Step 1. Go to a business where you would like to work.
Step 2. Approach the first employee you find in that business and say "Hi! Can I talk to the manager?"
Step 3. When the manager comes, maintain eye contact, smile, and introduce yourself confidently by saying "Hi! My name is [your name]."
Step 4. In one sentence, briefly describe yourself and ask the manager for what you need by saying "I am a hard worker! Can I set up an interview with you?"
Use this approach with any size business. However keep in mind that focusing on small businesses may allow you to bypass corporate red tape or long online applications. Much of your job search is a numbers game--the more you approach employers, the greater your chances are of finding employment. So repeat these four simple steps until you get hired.
Digital comic by Joe Chiappetta 2013 on Microsoft Surface Tablet in Fresh Paint program

The Man with the Golden Widget

The Man with the Golden Widget comic by Joe Chiappetta
Disclaimer: Any cartoon similarities with any persons from the Illinois Department of Commerce and Economic Opportunity (DCEO) are purely hilarious.
In case this surreal comic cranked right over your head, it's a light political satire about the paradox between honest government workers striving to provide universal services to all people while also responding to the individual needs of each widget... I mean unique citizen.
At a special event for a seasoned government worker, a colleague addresses his honored friend and says, "Congratulations, Bill Simplewell, on receiving The Golden Widget Award at your retirement dinner!"
With all the sincerity of a loyal lifelong State worker fighting for truth, justice, and an auditor's way, Bill asks, "But I still don't quite understand: what exactly is a widget?"
In a rare moment of government-funded inspiration, the colleague replies, "We're all widgets: every last one of us!"
All kidding aside, I thank God that he has put me in The United States of America. Is it perfect? Of course not. Do some people fall through the cracks because they can't figure out how to fit into the system? Yes, it happens. But we have it better than most countries and I am grateful for being a part of the USA.
Nevertheless, my hope is not in this, or any earthly government. My hope is in the amazing plan of redemption that God has instituted through Jesus Christ. In Isaiah 9:6-7, we get a great view of Jesus' capacity for leadership, government, and peaceful vision:
"For to us a child is born, to us a son is given, and the government will be on his shoulders. And he will be called Wonderful Counselor, Mighty God, Everlasting Father, Prince of Peace. Of the increase of his government and peace there will be no end. He will reign on David's throne and over his kingdom, establishing and upholding it with justice and righteousness from that time on and forever. The zeal of the LORD Almighty will accomplish this."
The jaded may look at the above verse and think, "Yeah right, that will never happen in a million years." Yet the faithful read this and confirm that it is happening even now, through the unseen workings of the Holy Spirit and Jesus' totally committed followers.
Digital comic by Joe Chiappetta 2013 on Microsoft Surface Tablet in Fresh Paint program.

Lost in the Future or Anchored to the Ancient Book

The following cartoon and article is an introductory excerpt from my latest eBook: Mighty Messianic Prophecy. It's a non-fiction, no-nonsense, non-stop study of the predictions proving Jesus as the messiah. Release date: Fall 2013.

A father and son lounge in their futuristic living room while the son opens up an old box. The father is surprised at what his son has discovered in the long-forgotten box. 

Glancing up from his virtual reality goggles, the father declares, "Wow that's a real authentic book! We should read it." The father is referring to the top book in the box which his son grabs in curiosity. The title of this rare and giant book evokes a sense of respect and awe: "The Holy Bible."

The son, being only accustomed to eBooks, movies, virtual reality, and video games, has never seen an actual printed book. So he asks "Where is the start button?"

Lost in the Future or Anchored to the Ancient Book

A comic depicting the increasingly aloof attitude that the world has for the Bible has led me to a significant observation. More and more, I find that people, self included, can be easily captivated by the allure of anything new: iPhones, iPads, iWatch, Wii, the list goes on. I don't have any of these devices but I can't deny a certain fascination with the development and progress of such technology and the new content that these formats pave the way for.

While the fa├žade of spinning everything new as supremely better remains part of our societal value system, one ancient book continues to hold up content that, despite being quite old, "is perfect, reviving the soul," as stated in Psalm 19:7. That book, of course, is The Holy Bible.

As we enjoy a sense of newness in life which God allows us to have, and as we search for the next big thing, I am reminded that what really counts is for us to meditate on God's law, day and night (Psalm 1:2). Think deeply and repeatedly about what God calls us to be and to do. Most people will scoff at this kind of talk. I know this for sure, since I was such a person for three dark decades of my life.

Nevertheless, a few faithful believers, anchored to the past that was transformed by Jesus Christ on the cross, will find excitement in God's ability to "revive the soul." No one but God can do such a thing as to revive our inner life essence--our soul. Yet for God, that is his main line of work! Luke 19:10 explains that Jesus "came to seek and to save what was lost." Being a former lost soul, and completely undeserving of any sort of revival, I am so grateful that God still called me to him. I was a lost cause, drunk on the future glory of self and fellow man, without a clue as to which way was up. Yet I was revived, converted, and found--only by the grace (undeserved favor) of God.

In the future, which is here today and full of tantalizing distractions, our population will become increasingly polarized about God. The multitudes continue to abandon him in favor of the many modern-day idols, while a select few will find an anchor for their soul in the promise of salvation through Jesus Christ, as highlighted in Hebrew 6:19, "We have this hope as an anchor for the soul, firm and secure..."

Therefore the following core question is left as a warning, and as a challenge; Are you lost in the future or anchored to God's word? It may be an ancient book, but the Bible is the only book that has stood the test of time. In the end, it will also be the only book to remain.

If you need help finding the start button, please let me know.

Those Cute Little Interruptions

Those Cute Little Interruptions - Silly Daddy comic by Joe Chiappetta

This universal mother and child moment in comics is one that all parents can likely relate with instantly.

While trying to write something of substance down on paper, a mother's train of thought is abruptly derailed by her young daughter who is pulling on her mother's arm with all the cuteness that she can muster. A common thought enters the mother's mind; "Someday I'll probably miss these frequent little interruptions."

As her child continues to tug on her arm, mom takes a good look at her dear daughter, hearts melt, and a childhood memory is cherished.

Even after over two decades of fatherhood, being a parent continues to be one of the most mind-boggling experiences of my life. I mean that in a good way, like how Disney's Space Mountain is mind-boggling the first time you go through it. Or closer to home, parenting is mind-boggling like that first visit to the beach on a warm sunny day after a long winter. There is so much more to life--wonder and amazement--unless we take it for granted. The same can be said for parenting.

I believe that God designed parenting not just to provide for the needs of the young, but also to humble the characters of the parents. Through raising children I have learned so much about the nature of life, God, humanity, and my own heart.

In my selfish nature, there is often the temptation to be laser-focused on my own interests, while ignoring the interests of others. Being a parent--at least if you want to be a good one--forces you to deal with those self-centered desires on a daily basis, because your kids always need something.

Therefore a good parent must not only accept this fact--that they must live a sacrificial lifestyle--but they must also be proactive in deciding how best to meet the needs of their family. I have now come to appreciate how God has put my three children in my life for great reasons, not the least of which has been so that I can see the depths of my sin and repent of my introverted, and often indifferent natural tendencies toward the needs of others. Parenting has changed me forever--for the better.

I thank God for setting such an irrefutable example of who a great father really is through his pattern in the Bible. God is the ultimate parent, laying down his life for me, and for my children.
"I will be a Father to you, and you will be my sons and daughters, says the Lord Almighty." - 2 Corinthians 6:18
Digital comic by Joe Chiappetta 2013 on Microsoft Surface Pro using Autodesk Sketchbook Express

If you appreciate the themes covered in this webcomic and essay, you will most certainly also enjoy my wife's eBook, Rescuing Supermom.

When Shopping with a Paratriathlete

When Shopping with a Paratriathlete - comic by Joe Chiappetta
Melissa Stockwell, a US veteran and person with a prosthetic leg, gave an inspiring as well as practical speech at the 2013 Adler Abilities Symposium in Chicago, sponsored by the Adler School of Professional Psychology. This is not an exact quote but she said something to this effect;
"When I go to the store, I don't need people congratulating me for getting out of my house to buy groceries. I'm a champion paratriathlete. You can congratulate me for that!"

Digital comic by Joe Chiappetta 2013 drawn on Samsung Tablet PC in ArtRage program running good old Microsoft Windows XP