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August 31, 2012

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    Untitled Document [Really Good Quotes A mind, once expanded by a new idea, never returns to its original dimensions. - Oliver
    Message 1 of 1 , Aug 30, 2012
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      Really Good Quotes "A mind, once expanded by a new idea, never returns to its original dimensions." - Oliver Wendell Holmes
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      Greetings Quotaholics

      This is going to be a short one folks. To tell the truth I almost "called in sick" today. I usually wait till the last minute to send my stories, seeing as how I have discovered that the adrenaline rush of the deadline looming so closely gives me a bit of inspiration. That, and Handels 'Water Music', always the music. I heard in college that this music was good to study with and it seems to work for me.

      Anyhow, I am faced with two mandatory inservice commitments at work that need to be done today. Now. As in, I should be getting ready to go instead of at the computer. The training never stops in this job. We have different inservices every month, but a special one came up for its annual review and I only found out about it late yesterday. Oopsy!

      In this age of political correctness and zero tolerance comes another story of Not Clear On The Concept. (areyououttherejerry?)

      For anyone not familiar with sign language used by the deaf community, most words have a symbolic gesture associated with them for use in conversation. Rarely are words "finger-spelled" out.

      3-year-old Hunter Spanjer of Nebraska signs his first name with a gesture resembling a gun, the gesture being the sign for the letter "H". Apparently the school officials have take great offense at this, claiming the gesture looks enough like a gun to be violating the schools policy against weapons. According to the parents, the school has asked them to stop.

      Apparently Instead of signing the childs name as he has been taught and has been doing all his life, his teacher has been finger spelling his name out. Now...I imagine Hunter to be a bright child but still...learning the alphabet at 3? I can see where Hunter could get confused. I'm confused.

      School district spokesman Jack Sheard claims Grand Island Public Schools has not changed the sign language name of any student, nor is it requiring any student to change how his or her name is signed. He says it is unfortunate that the distric is getting a black eye for something when we;re really dedicated to that goal. That goal? Which goal? Riddle me this...why is the teacher still spelling to a three year old?

      One thing I am sure of. The feces have collided with the oscillating device in this particular school district in Nebraska. Brian Spanjer, the father of Hunter posted a letter from the ACLU in which legal cases were cited and asking the district to politely cease and desist. Yeah, the ACLU over a 3 year old in Nebraska. (shaking head, here) Oh wait, there is a Facebook page called Let This Deaf Child Keep His Name Sign.

      To me this should be a no brainer, yet according to a live poll you'll see if you click on the link, not everyone is of the same opinion regarding the right and wrong of this question.

      Is/was the school district right or wrong in this policy? Is it so violent and ugly a society that a mere hand gesture is as threatening as the actual weapon it purports to resemble? I don't know, maybe it's true that I am old and they are young and I speak a barbarous tongue.


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      Today's Quotes

      Humility is to make a right estimate of one's self; it is no humility for a man to think less of himself than he ought, though it might rather puzzle him to do that. - Charles Haddon Spurgeon

      Consistently wise decisions can only be made by those whose wisdom is constantly challenged. - Ted Sorensen

      Today's Chuckle

      Lost Keys
      [Thanks dEE]

      Frantically I headed for the parking lot. My wife, Diane, has scolded me many times for leaving the keys in the ignition. My theory is the ignition is the best place not to lose them. Her theory is that the car will be stolen. As I burst through the doors of the church, I came to a terrifying conclusion. Her theory was right. The parking lot was empty. I immediately call the police. I gave them my location, confessed that I had left my keys in the car, and that it had been stolen.

      Then I made the most difficult call of all, "Honey," I stammered. I always call her honey in times like these. "I left my keys in the car, and it has been stolen."

      There was a period of silence. I thought the call had been dropped, but then I heard Diane's voice, "Ken," she barked, "I dropped you off!"

      Now it was my time to be silent. Embarrassed, I said, "Well, come and get me."

      Diane retorted, "I will, as soon as I convince this policeman I have not stolen your car!

      Life Sentences

      Establishing lasting peace is the work of education; all politics can do is keep us out of war.

      If education is always to be conceived along the same antiquated lines of a mere transmission of knowledge, there is little to be hoped from it in the bettering of man's future. For what is the use of transmitting knowledge if the individual's total development lags behind?

      Never help a child with a task at which he feels he can succeed. - all from Maria Montessori, Italian educator, born on this day in 1870

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      Cliff's Notes


      When I was a kid, most of our family lived a ways away.  Only my mom's side of the family was close.  But, it took an hour or more to get to their place.  For a kid, an hour is a long time.  My brother and I would get quite antsy by the time we got there.  The route was all too familiar and we had to try to be still for longer than our busy selves could do.

      My father was in the military. At least every 2 years, we moved, whether we wanted to or not. We would go to a whole new area, well away from family, and the friends we had made where we were.  I got used to this.  Really, it was "normal" and I accepted it.  When I was older, I would try to keep in touch with my friends when one of us moved, but that dwindled to nothing in a short time.  They, and I, were busy with our lives and letters would become harder and harder to write.

      When I married, I took my bride 1,000 miles from home. Although it was probably one of the best things for us, it was difficult for her adjusting to a new life and nobody with whom she was familiar to share her homesickness and missing her family and friends.  We had to dedicate a full week for travel and visitation when we went back home.  Being employed, we didn't get to do that as often as we wished.

      Later in life, we moved "back home". We were within a half hour of my wife's family, except for a couple siblings who moved away and were a ways away.  Of course, those were the ones she felt closest to.  And, in a similar vein, my only brother was in the military and was always way out there somewhere.  No to be outdone, my own parents decided to move to more friendly climates.  Once I was "back home", home moved!

      I did have my own family with my wife and children to keep me happy.  We were quite close.  We lived in the same house and all was right with the world,  for the most part.  Then the same thing began happening with my kids that happened to me.  My daughter met someone and moved out to start her adult life.  Later, my son did the same thing.  Luckily, for a while, they were fairly close by and we could, and would, see them quite often.  Then, my son and his family moved over 500 miles away.

      I took up geocaching as it was something near me I could do. At first, most of the caches were within a short drive from home.  That was about 2 years ago.  In short order, I spiraled out collecting the geocaches.  Except for the occasional ones that would be hidden nearby, I would have to drive further and further to get to enough geocaches to make it worthwhile.  Lately, due to the quantity of caches we have as a group, the people I go caching with and I have to drive an hour or more to find enough caches to make a day of it.

      I was comfortable with my nuclear family being all together and nearby. I was happy knowing there were so many caches near me.  I am a realist enough to know, and accept, that things change.  I just don't have to be elated about it.

      Here's your quiz:
      Did you move any distance when you grew up and started your own family?
      Do you live at home with your parents?
      Have you adjusted to having to commute, or having family away from you?

      Distance - Beam Me Up, Scotty
      Cliff (the High-Tech Redneck who doesn't rate a fancy 'signature pic')

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      BJ's Ponderings

      The 28th of August, My Day of Freedom

      I was a little punk nosed kid of 17 who graduated from high school with little ambition and few skills other than farming. I was given the summer to enjoy and then four choices, Marines, Navy, Army or the Air Force. I took the Air Force and so on August 28th, 1962 off I went into the unknown. Boot camp, a huge culture shock for me, but a learning one. I learned discipline, to work with others and to be my own man. As I write this it is hard to image that fifty years have passed. I still feel that devotion to the force, the military to our country and the pride that was instilled in me. I became a man.

      Later in life, I went through tough economic times in Wichita, Kansas, I was laid off at Boeing along with 10,000 others in 1969. Times were hard in that town with the unemployment reaching over ten percent. I had several jobs but they were all temporary and low paying. I went from making 800 a month to 300 a month and with a family,,,times were hard.

      Luck came my way and on the 28th of August, 1971 I was hired in Oklahoma City to work full-time in a major corporation in their national headquarters. I was saved…and for the past forty-one years I have had employment for major corporations. I will be retiring this coming year and as I look back, this date outshines them all. I was also a best man for my best friend's wedding on August 28th.

      BJ Cassady

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      Kirsten's Krazy Kaleidoscope

      Email Kirsten

      "You can learn many things from children. How much patience you have, for instance."
      ~ Franklin P. Jones ~

      I have been having a hellish week at work. My usual month-end financial reporting chaos coincided with a project-related crisis that needed immediate attention. I've been working long hours this week, eating lunch at my desk and bouncing frantically from one task to the next. It's like I've been trapped in a pinball machine on steroids.

      On Tuesday night, the kids picked up on my stress and took advantage as best they could. It was like that thing that happens in the wild, where animals pick on the weakest member of the herd. They were zinging off the walls and winding each other up as if they were starring in a time-lapse version of Toy Story.

      For dinner we got takeout from our favourite Greek restaurant, and when it arrived I was relieved. It meant that everyone would sit down quietly and eat their food, and I would get five minutes of peace and quiet.

      Yeah, right.

      George took an unauthorized bowl of ice cream from the freezer (translation: he stole it), and managed to drop it all over the carpet. Because I was too tired to supervise the clean-up efforts, he ended up mushing melted ice cream into the carpet and onto his clothes. Then James spilled his rice on a different portion of the carpet.

      My floor looked like one of those labs where they test what substances cause the biggest stains. We got wet rags and carpet cleaner stuff for the ice cream, and the vacuum cleaner for the rice.

      With the mess cleaned up, I sat down to eat my dinner, and the kids went off to play. Everyone was tripping over the long hose that goes in our central vacuum system, but the plan was to eat and then put it away.

      Me and my husband were vaguely aware of the sound of the kids playing. They sounded boisterous, but they weren't trying to strangle each other, so we didn't pay too much attention.

      A few minutes later, I heard it. The sound that never fails to cause intense anxiety in the parents of young children. The sound of my older son saying, "Uh oh."

      Before I could get up to investigate, I heard the other sound that scares the life out of parents. The sound of my younger son saying, "Don't tell Mommy."

      Well, this did not sound good. I went into the next room, and there was my younger son standing in the middle of a pool of water (yes, a pool of water, in my house, on the carpet), holding one end of the vacuum hose. I followed the hose to the bathroom, where my older son had the tap on, pouring water down the hose. Said water was then traveling down the hose and gushing out of the other end.

      All of this meant that I had my very own built-in swamp, right in the middle of my living room. All I needed was a couple of alligators, then I could have pretended I was vacationing in the Everglades.

      I don't know if my carpet or my vacuum cleaner will ever be the same again.

      Kaleidoscopically yours,

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      Lucille's Lunacy

      I have had a lot of court this month. Since I'm a lawyer, I shouldn't mind that. However, it is Friday, and I can't say that I'm heart broken that the weekend is here.

      Today started with a minor hearing in Judgipoo's court. As I mentioned in my earlier column, Judgipoo has been in the hospital with pancreatitis. My first guide dog had the same problem. He got his from getting into the neighbor's garbage. I am kind enough to give Judgipoo the benefit of the doubt on that score. After all, I don't live anywhere near him, so I know it couldn't have been my left over meat loaf. Besides, TJ, The Golden Retriever got to it first, and I'm sure what ended up in the trash wasn't enough to feed a cock roach, let alone a full grown Judgipoo. One of my colleagues substituted for him this morning. I have it on good authority that leaving court with ears unburnt and intact is a lovely way to start the weekend.

      When I got back, I had several appointments. People even gave me some of their hard earned money to do work for them.

      So, I know it is true. Some days you eat the bear, and some days, the bear eats you. It is better the first way. Being employed and leaving Judgipoo's courtroom with ears and ego intact is a rare and pleasurable experience. Having 2 days of unadulterated laziness stretching ahead is also a wonderful thing. Life is good, so until next week, I bid you a heart felt adios.

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      Odds and Ends - Did you know that when a person pees, a small deposit of urine enters the mouth through the saliva glands; that studies show that people who drink alcohol in moderation live longer than people who don't drink alcohol at all; that plants can recognize their siblings; that the United Nations declared the Internet a basic human right in 2011; that a rapper known as Big Lurch was arrested for killing and eating parts of his girlfriend in 2002; that Einstein designed a refrigerator over 70 years ago; that crying women are scientifically unsexy; and that 111,111,111 x 111,111,111 = 12,345,678,987,654,321. And I was impressed with 2x2=4, and 2+2=4.

      Thanks for keeping this alive, Skeeter! Try this one-

      There once was a blonde with no clue...

      Hints:  Here's a great new rhyming/composition tool.  http://www.writerhymes.com/
      There's also a great rhyming dictionary at http://www.rhymezone.com/
      Limerick rules.  http://freespace.virgin.net/merrick.sheldon/limerickrules.htm 

      Submit Opening Line
      Submit Limerick

      I once knew a gal named Ms Green.....
      Meanest gal I'd ever seen.....
      Meet her walking down the street?
      She'd knock you off your feet.....
      When I say mean I mean MEAN!!!
      - Skeeter
      I once knew a gal named Ms Green.....
      Seems she was an ex Marine.....
      She would knock you to the floor.....
      Then through the door.....
      She was a real fightin' machine.
      - Skeeter
      I once knew a gal named Ms Green.....
      In front of the mirror she'd preen.....
      For hours at a time.....
      Like she did in her prime.....
      But now she wasn't so lean.
      - Skeeter
      I once knew a gal named Ms Green.....
      When she was merely a teen......
      A lovely young lass.....
      Prettiest in our class.....
      On her I really was keen.
      - Skeeter
      Reader Comments

      Links to online editions of RGQ

      Re: Hype

      One only has to look at the recent spate of shootings to know that sensational stories are the first thing you hear and the truth is buried on page 3! Like the one at the Empire State Building--nine people shot! Except they were shot by the police who were attempting to apprehend the shooter--who had already shot the only person he was after. The spin on that one is incredible! I'm not saying they leave stuff out, but the news people have their own agenda, as do the politicians and police. Our weather in this area has been spot on lately, hot, dry, a little wind, and fire danger is high. They don't usually get it right in the rain department, but this place must have some of the most boring weather around! And no, if I ran a business and needed to advertise I would either not use a spot that had innacurate reporting, or I would pull my ads to express my opinion. That kind of thing has changed policy before and hopefully will again (just think Rush Limbaugh and his latest faux pas). - Ruth in WA

      This is the reason many people gave for not leaving New Orleans as Katrina was headed toward land. It isn't new, it is simply pitiful. Paul Simon sang about getting all the news he needed on the weather report. Today, with 24 hour reporting, you can't even trust that. - Patti

      My friend Phyllis was in the Diplomatic world for most of her career, and told me that she had been at about ten of the events that were written up in Time magazine. On each occasion, she found herself checking on time and place, unsure if the reporter had been at the same happening. I've only been around TV production a bit, but it was enough to convince me to never bother watching the stuff. The revised stories don't actually seem more credible to me.
      There is hope, though. Back when newspapers were brave, there was one reporter in Chicago who would never reveal his sources, but wrote up scandals at City Hall on a regular basis. At first, he gave his editors and the legal department ulcers, but he was never sued. Finally, when he was retiring, his editor asked him to at least pass on his contacts to a new writer. He then revealed that all he had done was to watch the official record about contracts and such, and cynically deduce who was behind what. - Bob of the North

      This is the truth, only the facts have been altered.
      The day it was 120 in Guthrie, Oklahoma, I got into a conversation with my son.
      But it was so hot the words..when we spoke, burst into flame as we spoke…that was hot.
      I tried to water the yard but all that came out of the hose was steam..again that was hot.
      In my driveway, my car had sunk halfway down into the concrete which had melted.
      Fortunately, I was able to toss the car a lifeline.
      Yes things were hot in Oklahoma and Kansas this year… exaggeratedly so. - BJ

      This is why I read a newspaper (the Akron Beacon Journal) ) instead of watching tv "news" - plus it avoids the political lies. I also find the Weekly Monitor a good source of in depth news and information. As for weather - I have a glass rain gauge in my garden. I "read" the clouds as I was taught many yeas ago to figure out what's heading my way in my yard. We have a temperature gauge in our van. When I start the vhicle, I read what it says. I can accurately predict it will be two degrees warmer when I get to the main road about four blocks away, and it's always so. We live in a hole. I am a long time retired journalist, and have seen the changes made in my profession since the 1970's. That's when students were taught to inject themselves into what they were writing. Since those kids had an immature idea about everything, they gave us glimpses of news. I was from the "Fly on the wall" school of journalists - observe, confirm from two other sources, write. A few folks still do that. You find their work in print. But you first need to know HOW to observe. It starts with knowing as much as you can about who you are interviewing. If they wrote a book, read it. If they achieved something, know what it was. Be on the scene and in the background of an event. Until you become a Columnist, you are not the focus of your story! If you write straight news, don't look for a by-line. An exception might be a war correspondent. My inspiration to go into this profession was Marguerite Higgins. Her daily column in the Cleveland Press was read by a young teen me daily. She was stationed in France behind the activity during World War II. She interviewed soldiers in hospitals, Officers directing the war, people living in harm's way. She's half the reason I learned French, too. The other half was to read a French short story book I had. - Nancy L in Ohio

      Re: Crossfit

      This spring, I was trying to increase my bicycle range, having finally accepted the need to do otherwise useless exercise. (I had never been fit until I took up bicycle commuting to save time.) Life is too easy here. I thought that the gardening would keep me fit, but not much of it was aerobic. I never heard of CrossFit, and can't justify burning a lot of extra calories; I'm content with cardiovascular action and some maintenance of flexibility. I do avoid all GM and most refined food, though. I can't help noticing the difference between the spry old farmers who come to town, vs the retired ones who live here and drive 2 blocks for coffee. Use it or lose it. I'll let you know if I get my range up, or weight down this fall. - Bob of the North

      Patti I am right with you. The longest journey begins with the first step, and you have made that step. Stay with your program, remember it will be a long process to get where you want to be and don't get discouraged.
      My birthday was this week and I am 56. I have struggled with a fat physique my entire life. As a kid I ate poorly, as did all of my family, but I did stay active. I just have a lot of fat which really seems to like me.
      About 10 years ago I started a regular exercise routine involving weights, walking, treadmills, etc. My nutrition is much better but I still like to drink a few beers and maybe a glass of wine. These days I get some form of exercise for an hour or more, at least 3 times a week. I feel great but my fat content is still over 25%. My cardio system is in great shape, good blood pressure, low heart rate and I have reasonable endurance. My wife bought me a bicycle for my birthday and I plan to go out on the many local trails whenever the weather allows. On bad weather days I have stuff in the basement I can use to get daily exercise.
      The important thing is to do something. - Dan in St Louis

      Best of luck, Patti! I, too, got "old" (3 years younger than you) and fat...I have a bunch of excuses, even reasons, but really - they *are* excuses. My diet is hideous, and I could lose 50 pounds and not miss them one bit. I'm working on motivating myself to find a way to straighten out this mess that's passing for a body, and maybe, just maybe, watching you get back in shape will be the thing that finally gets my fat ass off the couch and back on the treadmill. So you BET I'll be watching, and keeping you honest! If you can do it, I should be able to, too. - OhioKat

      IF your heart is in it you can do all things. Those you feel you can't do ask God to help and believe He will and He will - dEE

      I am 68 years old this year, and I weigh the same as I did when I graduated from high school-back in the stone age
      when there were no cell phones, personal computers, CDs, DVDs, video games, etc...

      There are so many things to keep people "on the couch" today, and there are so many unnatural additives
      in our food that cause weight gain that it's no surprise we have become a fat nation.

      I spent a short time as a weight-loss coach but there were so many people that wanted to lose weight that
      weren't willing to give up the sugary snacks and the soft drinks that I became frustrated and got a job as
      an electrician.

      Good luck an your weight loss-and pay attention to what you buy in the grocery store... - J W, Lawrenceville, GA

      Re: Race

      Catching up to your last race results, and what to do about them, I have given it some thought, and recommend getting familiar with the way that a touch of fatalism helped you get in The Zone, and then apply that to everything you can in life. - Bob of the North

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      Disclaimer- All quotes printed in this publication are believed to be accurately attributed, but no guarantees are made that some incorrectly attributed, or even outright false quotes won't get in here from time to time.  I assure readers that I will do my best to weed out incorrect quotes, and will print a retraction as soon as I become aware of any errors.

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