Monday, February 27, 2017

In case you're bored, ponder these.

Need a little pick-me-up.  Here you go:
How important does a person have to be before they are considered assassinated instead of just murdered?

Once you're in heaven, do you get stuck wearing the clothes you were buried in for eternity?

How is it that we put man on the moon before we figured out it would be a good idea to put wheels on luggage?

Why is it that people say they 'slept like a baby' when babies wake up every two hours?

Why do people pay to go up tall buildings and then put money in binoculars to look at things on the ground?

Why do doctors leave the room while you change? They're going to see you naked anyway...

Why is 'bra' singular and 'panties' plural?

Why do toasters always have a setting that burns the toast to a horrible crisp, which no decent human being would eat?

If Jimmy cracks corn and no one cares, why is there a stupid song about him?
Why does Goofy stand erect while Pluto remains on all fours? They're both dogs!

Do the Alphabet song and Twinkle, Twinkle Little Star have the same tune?

Why did you just try singing the two songs above?

Did you ever notice that when you blow in a dog's face, he gets mad at you, but when you take him for a car ride, he sticks his head out the window?

Why do we press harder on a remote control when we know the batteries are dying?
Why do banks charge a fee on 'insufficient funds' when they know there is not enough money?

Why does someone believe you when you say there are four billion stars, but check when you say the paint is wet?

 Why do they use sterilized needles for death by lethal injection?
Why doesn't Tarzan have a beard?

Why does Superman stop bullets with his chest, but ducks when you throw a revolver at him?
Why do Kamikaze pilots wear helmets?

If people evolved from apes, why are there still apes?
Why is it that no matter what color bubble bath you use the bubbles are always white?

Is there ever a day that mattresses are not on sale?
Why do people constantly return to the refrigerator with high hopes that something new to eat will have materialized?

Why do people keep running over a thread a dozen times with their vacuum cleaner, then reach down, pick it up, examine it, then put it down to give the vacuum one more chance?
Why is it that no plastic bag will open from the end on your first try?

How do those dead bugs get into those enclosed light fixtures?
Why is it that whenever you attempt to catch something that's falling off the table you always manage to knock something else over?

In winter, why do we try to keep the house as warm as it was in summer when we complained about the heat?
How come you never hear father-in-law jokes?

Friday, February 24, 2017

Odds & Ends

Herewith a few odds and ends.
First, yesterday I turned 74.  At my age I'm not big into birthdays.  Maybe a little reflection on things as they stand but not much.  I'm just happy I'm still able to get up under my own power and live life fairly normally.  I don't honestly feel that old.  I enjoy being around the grand kids, I have a great family, I'm still able to tend to the yard and work up a supply of fire wood so all in all in spite of a few health related bumps in the road things are going well. On to 75!

Second, for my birthday my wife and I went to a movie and out to dinner.  The movie was called "Hidden Figures".  It's about a group of black female mathematicians who played a crucial role in the early days of our space program.  It was fantastic.  It will make you mad as hell and then happy.  Go see it.

Third, given the political climate these days you'll probably end up at a lot of movies for the foreseeable future just to avoid thinking about the mess we're in with bozo the clown running the country.  

That's all for today. 

Monday, February 20, 2017

Happy President's Week

This is the week schools celebrate the births of two of our greatest presidents: George Washington and Abraham Lincoln.  Lincoln was actually born on the 12th and Washington the 22nd.

Most schools are off these two days or even the week but it's doubtful if any of the kids much less their parents are taking this as an opportunity to learn more about these two presidents so as a public service I hereby offer the following obscure information about each.

Abraham Lincoln was a licensed bartender.

Abraham Lincoln's son, Robert, was saved from a train accident by Edwin Booth, brother of his father's killer, John Wilkes Booth.

Lincoln was the first major leader in the U.S. to feel that women should be allowed to vote.

Abe Lincoln is enshrined in the Wrestling Hall of Fame, having lost just once in 300 matches.

Lincoln's dog, Fido, was also assassinated.

Abraham Lincoln, Walt Disney, Bill Gates, Mark Zuckerberg, Henry Ford, Thomas Edison and Steve Jobs, all of them had no college degree.

Charles Darwin and Abraham Lincoln were born on the same day.

Abraham Lincoln dreamt of his assassination before it happened.

A secret message was engraved inside Abraham Lincoln's pocket watch by a jeweler, and it was not discovered until 2009.

An 11-Year-Old Girl Convinced Abraham Lincoln to Grow His Beard.

Abraham Lincoln has no confirmed living descendants. The last one, a great-grandson, died in 1985.

Robert Todd Lincoln, first son of Abraham Lincoln, was present or nearby the assassinations of his father, James Garfield, and William McKinley.
Poisoned milk killed Abraham Lincoln's mother when he was 9 years old.

Abraham Lincoln was the tallest U.S. President at 6-foot-4.

Abraham Lincoln was the first U.S. President born outside of the original 13 colonies.

Abraham Lincoln was the first U.S. President to be photographed at his inauguration


1. He didn't have a middle name.

2. He was not born on February 22, 1732.

3.That's his real hair, not a wig.
It looks white because he powdered it.

4. He was made an honorary citizen of France.

5. For a time, he was a non-president Commander-in-Chief (but didn't do much).

6. Nobody will ever rank higher than him in the U.S. Military.
In 1976 Washington was posthumously awarded the highest rank in the U.S. military, EVER.

When Washington died, he was a lieutenant general. But as the centuries passed, this three-star
rank did not seem commensurate with what he had accomplished. After all, Washington did more
than defeat the British in battle. Along the way he established the framework for how American
soldiers should organize themselves, how they should behave, and how they should relate to civilian
leaders. Almost every big decision he made set a precedent. He was the father of the US military as
well as the US itself.
So, a law was passed to make Washington the highest ranking U.S. officer of all time: General of the Armies of the
United States. Nobody will ever outrank him.

7. He had quite the salary.
According to the Christian Science Monitor, in 1789, his presidential salary was 2 percent of the total U.S. budget.

8. Even so, he had some cash flow problems.
He actually had to borrow money to attend his own first inauguration.

9. He was one of the sickest presidents in U.S. history.
Throughout his life, he suffered from a laundry list of ailments : diphtheria, tuberculosis, smallpox, dysentery, malaria,
quinsy (tonsillitis), carbuncle, pneumonia, and epiglottitis—to name a few.

10. He may or may not have died as a result of medical malpractice.
On the day he died, Washington was treated with four rounds of bloodletting, which removed 5 pints of blood from
his body. It seems that it proved to be too much. From the New York Times:
On Washington's fateful day, Albin Rawlins, one of his overseers and a bloodletter, was summoned.
Washington bared his arm. The overseer had brought his lancet and made an incision. Washington
said, ''Don't be afraid.'' That day, Rawlins drew 12 ounces of blood, then 18 ounces, another 18
ounces and a final 32 ounces into a porcelain bleeding bowl.
After the fourth bloodletting, the patient improved slightly and was able to swallow. By about 10 p.m.,
his condition deteriorated, but he was still rational enough to whisper burial instructions to Col. Tobias
Lear, his secretary.
At 10:20 p.m., Dr. James Craik, 69, an Edinburgh-trained physician who had served with Washington
in the French and Indian Wars, closed Washington's eyes. Another Edinburgh-trained physician, Dr.
Gustavus Richard Brown, 52, was also present. The third physician, Dr. Elisha Cullen Dick, 37, who
had been appointed coroner the previous year, stopped the clock in Washington's bedroom at that

11. He Might Have Been Infertile.
It is well-known that Washington had no children of his own. In 2007, John K. Amory of the University of Washington
School of Medicine proposed that Washington was infertile. Armory goes through a number of possible reasons for
Washington’s infertility, including an infection caused by his tuberculosis. “Classic studies of soldiers with
tuberculous pleurisy during World War II demonstrated that two thirds developed chronic organ tuberculosis within 5
years of their initial infection. Infection of the epididymis or testes is seen in 20% of these individuals and frequently
results in infertility.”

12. Washington’s body was almost buried in the Capitol.
He requested that he be buried at Mount Vernon, and his family upheld his request, despite repeated pleas by
Congress. They wanted to put his body underneath a marble statue in the Capitol.

13. He Was Not Very Religious.
According to Washington biographer Edward Lengel, "He was a very moral man. He was a very virtuous man, and
he watched carefully everything he did. But he certainly doesn't fit into our conception of a Christian evangelical or
somebody who read his Bible every day and lived by a particular Christian theology

14. He never chopped down that cherry tree.
Parson Weems, who wrote a myth-filled biography of Washington shortly after he died, made up the cherry tree
story. The Mount Vernon Digital Encyclopedia identifies that book, The Life of Washington, as " the point of origin for
many long-held myths about Washington."

 15. He was an inveterate letter-writer.
We don’t have an exact number, but the best estimates seem to put the number of letters he penned somewhere
between 18,000 and 20,000. If you wrote one letter a day, it would take you between 50 and 55 years to write that

16. Before becoming the Father of the Nation, Washington was a master surveyor.
He spent the early part of his career as a professional surveyor. Here’s one of the earliest maps he created, of his
half brother Lawrence Washington’s turnip garden:
Over the course of his life, Washington created some 199 land surveys. Washington took this skill with him into his
role as a military leader.

17. Before fighting the British, he fought FOR the British.
At the age of 21, Washington was sent to lead a British colonial force against the French in Ohio. He lost, and this
helped spark the Seven Years War in North America.

18. He was a dog-lover.
Washington kept and bred many hunting hounds. He is known as the "Father of the American Foxhound," and kept
more than 30 of the dogs. According to his journals, three of the hounds' names were Drunkard, Tipler, and Tipsy.

19. He lost more battles than he won.
According to Joseph J. Ellis' His Excellency: George Washington, “he lost more battles than any victorious general
in modern history.”

20. He was lucky, but his coat wasn't.
In the Braddock disaster of 1755, Washington’s troops were caught in the crossfire between British and Native
American soldiers. Two horses were shot from under Washington, and his coat was pierced by four musket balls,
none of which hit his actual body.

21. He didn’t have wooden teeth.
But he did have teeth problems. When he attended his first inauguration, he only had one tooth left in his head.

22. He is the only president to actually go into battle while serving as president.
On September 19, 1794, George Washington became the only sitting U.S. President to personally lead
troops in the field when he led the militia on a nearly month-long march west over the Allegheny Mountains to the
town of Bedford.”

23. He fell in love with his best friend’s wife.
According to Joseph Ellis' His Excellency, several letters show that before he married Martha, Washington was in
love with Sally Fairfax, who was the wife of George William Fairfax.

24. He was widely criticized in the press in the later years of his presidency.
He was accused of having an overly monarchical style and was criticized for his declaration of neutrality in overseas
conflicts. Thomas Jefferson was among the most critical of Washington in the press, and John Adams recalled that
after the Jay Treaty, the presidential mansion “was surrounded by innumerable multitudes, from day to day buzzing,
demanding war against England, cursing Washington.”

25. He owned a whiskey distillery.
He installed it at Mount Vernon in 1798 and it was profitable. According to Julian Niemcewicz, a Polish visitor to the
estate, it distilled 12,000 gallons a year. In 1799, Washington wrote to his nephew: “Two hundred gallons of Whiskey
will be ready this day for your call, and the sooner it is taken the better, as the demand for this article (in these parts)
is brisk.”



Friday, February 17, 2017

Insanity defined....

Ever wonder what a truly insane person acts like?  Actually, you probably know plenty of nut jobs out there but one really convincing case recently appeared before us: Trump's news conference yesterday!

During that performance we saw him display some of the most common signs of insanity:
compulsive lying

I could go on, but you get the idea.

Here's the thing. We've always known this about Trump so it's not really a shock.  But what concerns me is the unbelievable lack of backbone displayed by our congressional leaders.  The only ones we're hearing from are those from the minority party so their effectiveness is limited.

Take for example Congress's recent rollback of Pres. Obama's executive order barring the sale of firearms to those with a documented mental disorder.  After yesterday's congressional move, those people now have a right to own firearms.  Unbelievable.  You can't make this up. We're in such big trouble!

Tuesday, February 14, 2017

Happy Valentine's Day

I hope all you husbands out there remembered a card and/or flowers minimum.  I remembered.
Now here's some interesting trivia about Valentine's Day:

Sixty two percent of adults say they celebrate V Day.
Men spend on average $150 and women $74.
About 8 billion Sweetheart candies are produced for the day.
Contrary to popular opinion it is not the most popular holiday for greeting cards. Christmas is.
Over two million marriages take place every year on Valentine's Day.
The tradition started with the Romans during their Lupercalia festival.
The traditional heart-shaped chocolate box was started in 1868 by the chocolatier Richard Cadbury.
A dozen long stem roses can cost 3 time their usual price on this day.

Happy Valentines Day

Thursday, February 9, 2017


The first serious snowfall of the year.  Up to 18" expected.
It's nine A.M. and this is the view from my garage to the road. Near whiteout.
See more pictures on Click on photo gallery.

Wednesday, February 8, 2017

And on and on it goes....

With V.P. Mike Pence's tie-breaking vote, Betsy DeVos is the nation's new Sec'y of Education.  This is nothing short of a travesty.  This appointment will go a very long way to weakening our public school system.  Wake up America!

Thursday, February 2, 2017

Happy Groundhog Day

Today is Groundhog Day.  Groundhog Day day originated in Germany and subsequent settlers brought it over with them to Punxsutawney, PA.  Originally, the animal used  was a hedgehog.  Groundhogs are also known as woodchucks.  The one used for today's ceremony is named Phil.

The rule is if he sees his shadow, there will be six more weeks of winter.  If not, an early spring.  How they can tell whether or not he saw his shadow is a mystery to me but according to the folks in Punxsutawney, PA who conducted the ceremony this morning, he did in fact see his shadow-as if anyone had any doubt.

Obviously there is no science whatever involved in this silly tradition but I guess we should welcome any opportunity for a few people to have a little fun-especially during these trying times.

Anyway, happy Groundhog Day.

Wednesday, February 1, 2017

Happy February

Goodbye, January.  Hello, February.

Although it can be one of snowiest months of winter, there's a lot to like about February.  First of all it's loaded with family birthdays one of which is mine.  Second, the kids get a break from school in the middle of the month for Presidents' Weekend.  In my day we used to get the whole week off but most school systems have gone to a 4-day weekend instead to get kids out earlier in June.

Another thing I like about February is that tiny, little light at the end marking the approach of spring.  I can even remember Februarys that had a string of days with temperatures well into the 50s. Sure there have been record snowfalls too but with the sun getting ever higher in the sky, it melts quickly.

Yes, February is a good month-not my favorite but good.  So happy February, everyone.

To learn more about the month of February, click here