29 April 2008

Trav's First Meme

Travis over at Trav's Thoughts has invented his first meme. The rules are as follows:

1. Choose a category from one of these: Television, Stage & Screen, Nightly News, Publishing, Lives & Times, Music

2. Find 8 bits of trivia about your selected category

3. Be sure to let me know when...ok, if...you decide to play along so I can see what you come up with.

4. You may tag, or simply offer the meme for borrowing or stealing as you like.


I have chosen Lives & Times

Coming In First Achievements by American women

I tried to pick women not as well known as they sould be with the exception of Shirley Chisholm just because I loved her and if you don't know about her, make that the one link you read no matter what.

1. First Published Poet - Anne Bradstreet 1650

2. First to Receive A Medical Degree - Elizabeth Blackwell - 1849

3. First to Publish A Newspaper - Mary Katherine Goddard 1766

4. First African American in House of Representative - Shirley Chisholm 1969

5. First Presidential Candidate - Elizabeth Woodhull - 1872

6. First African American Woman Fighter Pilot - Maj. Shawna R. Kimbrell

7. First Attorney - 1869 Arabella Mansfield is granted admission to practice law in Iowa, making her the first woman lawyer. A year later, Ada H. Kepley, of Illinois, graduates from the Union College of Law in Chicago. She is the first woman lawyer to graduate from a law school.

8. And just to prove we can be as silly as men: On October 24, 1902, Annie Edson Taylor, a schoolteacher from Michigan, became the first woman to go over Niagara Falls in a barrell.

I've given up tagging, but take a look at Trav's meme on his page and then take part if you would enjoy it.

28 April 2008

Manic Monday - Rest In Peace


Magnificent Mo of It's A Blog Eat Blog World has decreed today's Manic Monday word to be "RIP". The last time I used "Rest In Peace" in a blog article, it was for a serious family story Finding Jessie. This time, nothing but giggles.

Center Line Bovine 4.95
Flat Cat 2.95
Thumper-on-the-bumper 3.95
Slab of Lab 2.95
Rack of Raccoon 3.95
Smear of Deer 4.95
Cocker Cutlets 3.95
Awesome Possum 1.95
Shar-Pei Fillet 5.95
Cheap Sheep $ .43
Chunk of Skunk 1.95
Snippet of Smidgen Pigeon 1.95
Road Toad 1.65
Swirl Squirrel 1.55
Rigor Mortis Round of Hound 4.25

26 April 2008

The Picture

I haven't nagged at folks for a while about labeling pictures and telling family stories even if only casual notes you put away for someone to find later. Regular readers are used to my mantra: History untold is history lost.

Here is a lovely song about both a picture, a family, and just why those stories are so very important. You wouldn't want to live in a world that was only what you find in the newspapers.

One Word Wonder

The pencil skirted Queen Mimi de Bloggingham has issued a royal decree that I participate in the One Word meme. Since SHE WHO MUST BE OBEYED with joy and alacrity (or grumbling and foot dragging but obeyed anyway) has so ordered, here is my offering.

There's only one rule...you only get one word.

Yourself: Peripatetic
Your Partner: Friend
Your Hair: Dyed
Your Mother: Confused
Your Father: Haunted
Your Favorite Item: Giraffe
Your Dream Last Night: Swimming
Your Favorite Drink: OJ
Your Dream Car: Convertible
Your Dream Home: River
The Room You Are In: Bed Room
Your Fear: Heights
Where Do You Want To Be In 10 Years: Cruising
Who You Hung Out With Last: Son
What You're Not: Skinny
Muffins: Bagels
One of Your Wish List Items: Broadway
Time: Early
Last Thing You Did: Memes
What Are You Wearing: Robe
Your Favorite Weather: Cool
Your Favorite Book: Mockingbird
Last Thing You Ate: Pizza
Your Mood: Curious
Your Best Friends: Distant
What Are You Thinking About Right Now: Politics
Your Car: Cavalier
Your Summer: Ocean
What's on your TV: Movie
What is your weather like: Overcast
When Is the Last Time You Laughed: Minutes
Your Relationship Status: Remembered

Feel free to borrow or steal!

24 April 2008

It Pays To Be Kind

In this Earth Week, think about both your pocketbook and your mental health ... Take the Train. The airfares are climbing. The lines are getting longer. More and more flights are being cancelled. The food is getting worse as your nerves get more and more frazzled. Measure the airport wait times, costs and convenience against the travel time available and then take a look at The Independent Traveler and Rustic Girls

I know gas prices are through the roof, but consider using that car less while demanding that your legislators support mass transit of all kinds. As populations go up and supplies go down, there is only one direction for those prices. When you add that cost to the destruction done by oil and its byproducts, the less used the better.

While you are screaming at the politicos you might that using corn for fuel is just plain stupid ... more land planted to corn ... less land planted to other crops ... everything that contains or lives off of wheat and other growing things will become more and more expensive. Gas prices go up. Wheat prices go up. Grocery prices go up. Do you see a connection here? If you have land, it's time to plant a vegetable garden. If you don't, connect with a farmer's market or local buying group.

If they are still around, ask parents and grandparents what they did during WW II to economize and conserve during rationing. Those same practical actions will help keep your costs down now. Besides the children might actually enjoy eating their own home grown food. For helpful hints, visit Get Rich Slowly.

23 April 2008

Sweet Nothings

Hive collapse is among the most troubling aspects of environmental damage. For still unknown reasons though a fungus is suspected, a hive will suddenly lose it's bees as if they no longer knew where to go or what to do. This quite naturally leads to the death of the hive.

When you consider all of the growing things that are pollinated by bees, it doesn't take you long to see the danger in this phenomenon. Scientists are feverishly at work trying to come up with both cause and cure. To assist them Hagen Daz ice cream is donating a portion of their sales of "bee dependent" flavors to this cause. For more information click on "Imagine A World Without Bees" above.

22 April 2008


Click above to learn ways to go green. You are a visitor on a very small planet.

Never say there is nothing beautiful in the world anymore. There is always something to make you wonder in the shape of a tree, the trembling of a leaf.

Man has lost the capacity to foresee and to forestall. He will end by destroying the earth.

Man is a clever animal who behaves like an imbecile.

A man is ethical only when life, as such, is sacred to him, that of plants and animals as that of his fellow men, and when he devotes himself helpfully to all life that is in need of help.

A man is truly ethical only when he obeys the compulsion to help all life which he is able to assist, and shrinks from injuring anything that lives.

By having a reverence for life, we enter into a spiritual relation with the world By practicing reverence for life we become good, deep, and alive.

Compassion, in which all ethics must take root, can only attain its full breadth and depth if it embraces all living creatures and does not limit itself to mankind.

I can do no other than be reverent before everything that is called life. I can do no other than to have compassion for all that is called life. That is the beginning and the foundation of all ethics.

21 April 2008

Shaken and Stirred

Last year for the anniversary of the great San Francisco earthquake, I wrote about the Winchester Mystery House and the terror of Sarah Winchester when the quake sealed her in a room until the servants were able to find her much later in the day. Due to a sudden awakening and scared kitties on the 102nd anniversary of all that shaking, Mo has decreed today's word to be "Quake", so I will have to come up with a different way of making the earth move .

So here is a story about a "Whole Lot of Shaking Going On". The year was 1957 and it was the summer I was 13 and I was spending it with my girlfriend's family in Fresno. Now both Cookie and I had sort of noticed the male of the species, but all the ones our own age were ... well ... 13. Still she did have an older brother whom we delighted in torturing and since her mother would be working that night, Kenny and a friend had agreed to chaperone Cookie's 13th birthday party so that we could have both boys and dancing.

The great day came and Kenny's best friend showed up coming straight from his summer construction job. Well tender visitors can you guess what happens when a handsome older man of 17 sits down on the stoop and removes his shirt because it is a blazing 100+ of San Joaquin Valley heat while a 13 year old female is sitting on the step above him looking at THAT back ... Hello hormones!!!! Where have you been all my life? .

The earth definitely moved with at least a 9.0 quake, and I did actually manage to get myself kissed that night (first one if you don't count the Hugh O'Brien for charity story told here earlier). So here is Jerry Lee Lewis with one of the songs we danced to that night.

And the rest of the story. In that more innocent age, we dated every summer when I returned to town until I was 16 and he was still a handsome older man of 21 who had gotten engaged while I was gone. Heartbreak can cause quite a quake as well, but he and the great quake of 1957 are still remembered fondly even a half century later when I hear:

17 April 2008

Campaign Literature

Pat Garrett and Wanted Poster

Billy The Kid

In political season, it is always good to remember that truth and fiction often depend upon who is doing the writing. One of the most famous cold-blooded, blood-thirsty killers of all time, just may not have been quite as evil as his first biographer (Pat Garrett running for office) made him out to be. Billy The Kid may have just been an orphaned teen, wrongly accused (at least at first), trying to survive in a harsh world.

15 April 2008

Meet Me For Lunch

This is one of those emails you have to pass along. All I want to know is who was the crazy person who took the photographs and which insane asylum is housing the people who made this trip?

First - take the tram up to the start of the trail.

Now follow the path

Be sure to hold on to the 'railing'

Keep an eye on the person in front of you.

Be very careful when passing someone going in the opposite direction.

Now just up a few steps. (they are on the left in the picture)

Gets a little steeper here - so put your toes in the holes .

A few more steps to go.

Finally in sight.


This restaurant is in China
If you manage to reach the restaurant the food is free

Let me know how the food is. I'm not going.

14 April 2008

96 Years Today

A massive tragedy at the time. Subject of many, many movies, and now of an investigation of the rivets that may have been too high in iron content that may be added to the whole list of causes. Still Harry Chapin somehow made the whole thing fun. If nothing else, it probably says something about the current political climate.

11 April 2008

Eighty Eight Years

It doesn't matter who you are supporting for president or even what you think about the Clintons, you have to be dismayed at the way Hillary Clinton has been treated by the media of this country. Has anyone commented on the thickness of Senator John McCain's ankles. Has anyone mused about Senator Obama's upper arms or called any display of temper "bitchiness"? Vote for anyone you want, but remember this election. It has been eighty eight years since women won the right to vote. If we ever let the media get away with doing this to another woman running for president, we don't deserve to be called a democracy.

Last night Keith Olbermann gave Elton John the bronze for "Worst Person" because Elton commented on American misogyny. Mr. Olbermann in his arrogance mused that Elton was speaking about the voting public. Well wake up Keithy, he was talking about you and your overpaid cohorts who have done everything possible to destroy this woman.

09 April 2008

We Are Their Voice

April 10 is ASPCA Day in honor of the anniversary of the founding of The American Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals in 1866.

You are encouraged to GO ORANGE FOR ANIMALS!
Going Orange on ASPCA Day is a tribute to the work of the ASPCA and a celebration of compassion and kindness for all living things everywhere. (Orange is the official ASPCA color and what better to celebrate than our love of animals?)


Get Your free computer wallpaper Here

Buddy Can You Spare The Time

Four years ago I took a trip to Scotland. Fortunately, it was in the spring and the gardens were in their glory with all the buds opening in the warmth of the sun, singing of the birds, and the butterflies fluttering by. So here is a little review of some of the prettier places. Would I go back a second time ... in a second if only to see more of the buds of May.

08 April 2008

It's About Time

It sometimes takes a while for officialdom to get around to honoring what everybody already knows. Bob Dylan doesn't need the honor. He is totally secure in the love and admiration of generations courtesy of a more than 40 year career sharing his poetry with the world. Still it is nice to know that he has been given an honorary Pulitzer Prize as this year's winners were unveiled in New York. Even better they gave it to him for the right reason: his "profound impact on popular music and American culture, marked by lyrical compositions of extraordinary poetic power".

Everyone has their favorite Dylan music (or favorite for that moment in time). Feel free to share which ones meant something at some point in your life. If you need any helpful hints, You Tube has a whole channel, Bob Dylan TV with enough videos to keep you blissful for a long while. Then there is always Bob Dylan Dot Com with a list of all the songs. Get the title and then do a search on the lyrics page. Instant poetry for the rest of your life.

Congratulations Mr. Dylan. Enjoy what you have had coming from the beginning.

07 April 2008

No Pun In Ten Did

One of the glories of the English language is that there are so many words that sound alike or have multiple meanings that creativity in playing with them is enormous fun.

Puns are either the highest or lowest expression of this playfulness. Here are a few of the more abysmal of the variety. Feel free to contribute more to the groan fest:

1. A vulture boards an airplane, carrying two dead raccoons. The flight attendant looks at him and says, "I'm sorry, sir, only one carrion allowed per passenger."

2. Two fish swim into a concrete wall. The one turns to the other and says "Dam!"

3. Two Eskimos sitting in a kayak were chilly, so they lit a fire in the craft. Unsurprisingly, it immediately sank, proving once again that you can't have your kayak and heat it too.

4. Two hydrogen atoms meet. One says "I've lost my electron." The other says "Are you sure?" The first replies "Yes, I'm positive."

5. Did you hear about the Buddhist who refused Novocain during a root canal? His goal: transcend dental medication.

6. A group of chess enthusiasts checked into a hotel and were standing in the lobby discussing their recent tournament victories. After about an hour, the manager came out of the office and asked them to disperse. "But why?", they asked as they moved off. "Because," he said," I can't stand chess-nuts boasting in an open foyer."

7. A woman has identical twins and is forced to give them up for adoption. One of them goes to a family in Egypt and is named "Ahmal." The other goes to a family in Spain; they name him "Juan." Years later, Juan sends a picture of himself to his birth mother. Upon receiving the picture, she tells her husband that she wishes she also had a picture of Ahmal. Her husband responds, "They're identical twins! If you've seen Juan, you've seen Ahmal."

8. A group of friars were behind on their belfry payments, so they opened up a small florist shop to raise funds. Since everyone liked to buy flowers from the men of God, a rival florist across town thought the competition was unfair. He asked the good fathers to close down, but they would not. He went back and begged the friars to close. They ignored him.

So, the rival florist hired Hugh MacTaggart, the roughest and most vicious thug in town to "persuade" them to close. Hugh beat up the friars and trashed their store, saying he'd be back if they didn't close up shop. Terrified, they did so, thereby proving that only Hugh can prevent Florist friars.

9. Mahatma Gandhi, as you know, walked barefoot most of the time, which produced an impressive set of calluses on his feet. He also ate very little, which made him rather frail and, with his odd diet, he suffered from bad breath. This made him (Oh, man, this is so bad, it's good) a super calloused fragile mystic hexed by halitosis.

10. There was the person who sent ten different puns to friends with the hope that at least one of the puns would make them laugh. No pun in ten did.

And going in for the overkill:

Energizer Bunny Arrested & Charged with Battery.

A pessimist's blood type is always b-negative.

Practice safe eating -- always use condiments.

A Freudian slip is when you say one thing but mean your mother.

Shotgun wedding: A case of wife or death.

Marriage is the mourning after the knot before.

A hangover is the wrath of grapes.

Corduroy pillows are making headlines.

Is a book on voyeurism a peeping tome?

Does the name Pavlov ring a bell?

A successful diet is the triumph of mind over platter.

Time flies like an arrow. Fruit flies like a banana.

A gossip is someone with a great sense of rumor.

Without geometry, life is pointless.

A man's home is his castle, in a manor of speaking.

When two egotists meet, it's an I for an I.

A bicycle can't stand on its own because it is two-tired.

What's the definition of a will? (Come on, it's a dead giveaway!)

A backwards poet writes inverse.

A chicken crossing the road is poultry in motion.

If you don't pay your exorcist, you get repossessed.

With her marriage, she got a new name and a dress.

When a clock is hungry, it goes back four seconds.

The man who fell into an upholstery machine is fully recovered.

A grenade in a French kitchen results in Linoleum Blownapart.

A lot of money is tainted. It t'aint yours and it t'aint mine.

A boiled egg in the morning is hard to beat.

He had a photographic memory that was never developed.

A short fortune-teller escaped from prison is a small medium-at-large.

Once you've seen one shopping center, you've seen a mall.

Those who jump off a Paris bridge are in Seine .

An actress who saw her first strands of grey hair thought she'd dye.

Acupuncture is a jab well done.

06 April 2008


The Mead Benchers

The Year 1000: What Life Was Like at the Turn of the First Millennium: An Englishman's World by Robert Lacey.

As the year 2000 approached with all the obsession over Y2K, a charming little book came out to take your mind off of impending doom by giving you a picture of the people who awaited the impending doom of the first millennium. The fact that both the oriental and Hebraic calendars were working on years of much higher numbers escaped their notice. The Year 1000 offered a month by month picture of daily life in Anglo-Saxon England. When everyone seemed obsessed with the future, this book took a sometimes surprising look at everyday life in Anglo-Saxon England. It focuses on aspects of daily living by depicting a practical but extremely superstitious people. While most people were illiterate, their daily language would become spread throughout the world.

There are pictures of daily life such as the total absence of sugar while honey was used as a monetary exchange. Bathing was virtually unknown and most adults died in their 40s. It was a wealthy country but plagued by Viking raids. What we think of full summer in July was the "starving" month ... late enough that stored provisions were depleted but the harvest was still at least a month away. The closing chapter discusses the legacy of these Anglo-Saxons. The delightful drawings at the beginning of each chapter are from the Julius Work Calendar. If you would like to visit a capsule in time, this is a wonderful, fast read.

Just as a side note, here is a good article about a few women in the year one thousand in other places the world at a website that may become one of your favorites. Notable Women

Then just for fun, my second thought on the theme was Robert Thomas Veline better known to the world as Bobby Vee and a song that seems like it was from 1000 years ago in another world far, far away.

And if that didn't make you feel like dancing: Wilson Pickett