Monday, May 31, 2010

Memorial Day

Memorial Day is not only a day for us to remember our soldiers but it also a day to remember those close to us that we have lost. Not an all inclusive list of remembrance but I would definitely like to remember Grandpa Goldy, Grandma Nanny, Dad, 14 year-old cousin Debbie; My Aunts Augusta, Emily, Nola, Ella, Clara; and all the relatives and friends that have touched me life. Who is on your remembrance list?

On to another subject. What percentage of income do you think that people that make less than $13K a year spend on the lottery? My guess was off, read the whys and wherefores here:

That is all today. Tell me how you are celebrating and who you are remembering. Inquiring minds want to know. And tell me if the lottery article surprises you.


I am one of the least well-known people ever featured in the Who Am I's but I am something the others weren't. Bill's mother is my first cousin and his brother's first name is the same as my middle name. He was named after me. I am one of less than five hundred soldiers to win both the Navy Cross and The Silver Star. I was mentioned in the book and movie "They Were Expendable" and am buried in Arlington. A PT Boat that was harbored for years in the Long Beach, California harbor was named after me. I was born August 20, 1915 to Arthur and Sarah. I attended a State College before entering the Naval Academy. After graduating at Annapolis I entered active service in 1937. Before the war started in 1939 I married Helen Ris at Stanford University. I was sent overseas in August of 1941. On January 30, 1942, the Lead Daily Call reported, “I, a lieutenant junior grade, from Springfield, S.D., returned with ten naval men from a perilous mission behind the Japanese lines on the Bataan peninsula on the night of January 18, accomplished our mission and then found ourselves faced with the job of returning individually to our base.” The article goes on to say that while trying to get back to base, I encountered a native with a bayoneted rifle. After a moment of startled silence, the native spoke first, saying, “Hello, Joe,” Which were the sweetest words I ever heard. On September 25, 1947, the Navy Department wrote to my wife and the letter said, in part:

It is with deepest regret you are now informed that information has been
received showing that your husband was killed in the garden of Lie Boen
Yat, Saris Manado, the Celebes on 2 July 1942. According to evidence
received … your husband, together with a fellow officer, was attempting
to escape from Mindanao Island, Philippine Islands, in a native boat. They
were captured on the Island of Bangka, North Celebes, and were taken by
the Japanese to Manado, where they were executed and buried in a common

When I was posthumously awarded the Navy Cross, this is the official announcement:

The President of the United States of America takes pride in presenting the Navy Cross (Posthumously) to Lieutenant of the United States Navy, for extraordinary heroism and distinguished service in the line of his profession while Commanding Motor Torpedo Boat THIRTY-ONE (PT-31), (Code Name Trabejdor), Motor Torpedo Boat Squadron THREE (MTB-3), in action against the enemy from 25 February 1942 through 10 April 1942, in the Philippine Islands. While exposed to frequent horizontal and dive bombing attacks by enemy Japanese air forces, Lieutenant directed the anti-aircraft battery of his ship and conducted operations of strategic importance in the Manila Bay area involving hazardous missions such as to bring great credit to his command and the United States Naval Service. He gallantly gave his life for his country. Action Date: February 25 - April 10, 1942 Service: Navy Rank: Lieutenant. Company: Commanding Officer. Regiment: Motor Torpedo Boat Squadron 3 (MTB-3). Division: Motor Torpedo Boat 31 (PT-31).

When I was posthumously awarded the Silver Star , this is the official announcement:

The President of the United States of America takes pride in presenting the Silver Star (Posthumously) to Lieutenant (NSN: 0-27903), United States Navy, for conspicuous gallantry and intrepidity in action against the enemy while Commanding Motor Torpedo Boat THIRTY-ONE (PT-31),(Code Name Trabejdor), Motor Torpedo Boat Squadron THREE (MTB-3), in action against the enemy while participating in a raid on 20 January 1942, in the Philippine Islands. Having grounded in Subic Bay as a result of engine failure due to gasoline sabotage, Lieutenant directed the transportation of his crew by night, through reef-studded water to the enemy shore, then, to prevent his vessel from falling into enemy hands, he destroyed the boat and torpedoes aboard and swam ashore. He and his party, armed only with three .45-caliber pistols, proceeded to a village, avoiding the enemy offensive against that village, and with Japanese soldiers within 200 yards of the beach, embarked in two bancas and made good their escape. When the bancas capsized in heavy seas and wind, with the men exhausted, Lieutenant by his capable leadership, righted the bancas and so encouraged his men that without the aid of paddles or sails and by the use of boards alone, they continued to a point where they disembarked safely. Lieutenant's gallant actions and intrepid leadership were in keeping with the highest traditions of the United States Naval Service. General Orders: Bureau of Naval Personnel Information Bulletin No. 311 (February 1943.) Action Date: 20-Jan-42 Service: Navy Rank: Lieutenant Company: Commanding Officer Regiment: Motor Torpedo Boat Squadron 3 (MTB-3) Division: Motor Torpedo Boat 31 (PT-31). Who Am I?

Sunday, May 30, 2010

Updates, Yours And Mine.

The day of rest results in no Who Am I of the day. The answer to yesterday's Who Am I was Abigail Adams.


DR is improving but not all the way back so continue healing vibes and if prayer is your style those would be appreciated also. Maryanne is improving but not all the back so same game plan, prayers and healing vibes her direction. June arrives Tuesday and that is the month when Dona's husband gets tests and results so prayers and healing vibes The Shankster's way. My cousin L is dealing with two types of cancers. Mom heard from her last week. She told Mom she is going to enjoy life as long as she can, so vibes, good thoughts and prayers her direction would be appreciated. Through the grapevine I heard that my sister-in-law isn't doing that well. Her face is twitching and this scares me that it might be Parkinson's . I think it has been established that she isn't on my list of favorite people but still nobody deserves the fear that comes with that possibility. My brother doesn't do well when people close to him are ill. It would be dearly appreciated if you would send positive thoughts, healing vibes, and prayers both my brother's and my sister-in-law's direction. Thanks everyone.


Monday I had the minor foot surgery that I must endure twice a year. It really wasn't all that painful and the feet feel so damn much better. On they way out of the doctor's office the doctor said "It is nice to see you are wearing matching shoes today." Remember the last time I went there I got dressed in a hurry. When I got to the doctor, I looked down and had two different colored shoes one. That was well over three months ago and he still remembered? They must have been laughing for a very long time.

Confession time. You all know I attended an ethics seminar this week. I had it ingrained in my mind that the seminar was Tuesday. In my computer whenever I schedule an appointment I put in a alert that dings twenty-four hours before the appointment when I turn the computer on. Monday the computer didn't ding. I just thought the computer was wrong. I do think I get points for going to the right place, it was just the wrong day. It wasn't Tuesday. I went back on Wednesday, which was the right day. Yes, the computer did ding on Tuesday.


I'm following the advise of a woman I respect, DR. I've been spending to much time editing. Writing a chapter and editing it. The advise was to jettison the editing and finish the manuscript. That is what I am doing. I've written two chapters this week and am working on a third. I'm now about ten chapters into it. Next week on the blog we may talk about lost loves and I may share some of that writing. I went back over the blog and my blog has gotten less personal over time. I've decided to try to make the blog a little more personal by sharing more personal things once in a while.


Nicole won Dancing With The Stars. She was by far the best dancer. I really wanted Erin but anyone of the three were deserving of the mirror ball. This was the best season of DWTS yet. The final on Celebrity Apprentice was about emotional as it gets and was great television. Brett Michaels against the advise of his doctors made a live appearance. The audience went wild and the contestants, including finalist Holly Robinson, where all in tears. While Brett Michaels got the official title both Michaels and Robinson received two hundred grand for their charities. Unlike last year when Joan Rivers and Annie Duke were the ultimate bitches this year Michaels and Robinson really liked and respected each other. No bitterness this year.

I don't watch The American Idol and I am not a Lostie. Both had their finals this week. The American Idol was Lee DeWyze. Most of the blogs I read felt Crystal Bowersox was the better singer and should have won. As for Lost you can read a pretty good summary on one of my favorite blogs, The Chaos Chronicles:

I'm done. It's now your turn. Update me on your lives. Introduce yourselves. Vent. Post anything you damn well please.

Saturday, May 29, 2010

My Pledge

Change begins with me. First there was the ethics seminar. Then there was the article on the loss of empathy. Then when researching the post on Empathy and Ethics I discovered this quote:

''Finally -- well, he wasn't the president. He was the chancellor, Hitler, decided that it was the only empathetic thing to do, is to put this child down and put him out of his suffering. It was the beginning of the T4, which led to genocide everywhere. It was the beginning of it. Empathy leads you to very bad decisions many times.''

—Glenn Beck, on President Obama's statement that he would consider ''empathy'' in choosing a Supreme Court nominee, Fox News' Glenn Beck show, May 26, 2009

To say I completely disagree with that quote would be the understatement of all time.

I'm not happy with manners seemingly disappearing in my world. I'm not happy that ethics seems to be disappearing as well. I'm certainly not happy that so many have lost their empathy. Change begins with me. It starts today.

At the seminar on ethics they did spend a few minutes on the Human Rights Pledge that the member nations of The United Nations take. That encouraged me to make to formulate my own pledge. This is the pledge that I am making to you and to myself:



I will treat my fellow human beings with respect and dignity regardless of their race, religion, color, ethnic origin, physical limitations or disabilities, or if their sexual persuasion are different than mine.

I will respect the right to privacy of others.

I will perform one act of kindness towards another human or animal each day.

I will respect my elderly.

When faced with an ethical dilemma I will follow my heart and do what benefits others more than myself.

I will not steal from other humans or businesses.

If I am in a committed relationship I will not violate that commitment and cheat on the man or woman that I am committed to.

I will tell the people close to me at least once a day that I love them.

If I have sixteen items or more I will not go through the fifteen items or less aisle at the checkout stand.

I will take a deep breath instead of using my middle finger when driving.

I will not make judgments about others' feelings, decisions or comments, particularly those close to me.

I will not project my expectations onto others, nor will I allow my perceived expectations others may have of me to drive my life or feelings.


A pledge is not a requirement to be perfect. I know there will be days when I fail miserably at keeping my pledge but it is a goal of the person I hope to be. If you would like to add a line item to the pledge, please do so and I will add it to the above list. If you want to share the pledge with others be my guest. If you would like join me in taking the pledge more power to you!

May this day begin change.

Who AM I?

Yesterday's answer was Mary Elizabeth Bowser.

I am not only more well-known than most of the featured Who Am I's (even Laura Linney knows of me) the owner of The Dahn Report is a descendant of our family. I was an advocate of married women's property rights and more opportunities for women, particularly in the field of education. I believed, women should not submit to laws not made in their interest, nor should they be content with the simple role of being companions to their husbands. I believed they should educate themselves and thus be recognized for their intellectual capabilities, so they could guide and influence the lives of their children and husbands. Along with my husband I believed that slavery was evil and a threat to the American democratic experiment. An example of this is whene a free black youth came to my house asking to be taught how to write. I placed the boy in a local evening school despite objections from a neighbor. I responded that he was "a freeman as much as any of the young Men and merely because his face is black, is he to be denied instruction? How is he to be qualified to procure a livelihood? ... I have not thought it any disgrace to myself to take him into my parlor and teach him both to read and write."

I was both a mother and wife of famous men. I was born in 1744 and died in 1818. I was born a Smith to a reverend and a homemaker. My mother was a cousin of a famous signature. I was a sickly child and was not considered healthy enough for formal schooling but my mother taught my sisters and I to read, write and cipher. I married a man nine years my elder. My dad was all for the match but Mom was appalled that I would throw my life away on a country lawyer with farm manners. We had three boys and three girls. My first daughter and I did get to go to Paris to join my husband and son as my husband served there a diplomat. My first daughter would later die of breast cancer. Although I was a second first, I was also the first to live in a famous house. I died before my son lived there. I once asked my daughter in a letter, "When will Mankind be convinced that true Religion is from the Heart, between Man and his creator, and not the imposition of Man or creeds and tests?" Who Am I?

Friday, May 28, 2010

Empathy & Ethics.

Interesting article:

Where has empathy gone? The article implies that the media is part of the problem. I hope they include talk radio in that media because regardless the political slant the shows tend to be mean-spirited and pit people against each other rather than encourage honest debate.

As you know I attended a seminar on ethics this week. I wasn't able to sleep during it because they divided the class into small discussion groups. It is pretty hard to sleep in a group of four without being noticed. After thinking about the seminar I couldn't help but relating the lost of empathy with the lost of ethics. One of the statements the main speaker said was that the financial meltdown of a couple of years ago wasn't really a financial breakdown instead it was a breakdown of ethics. My immediate reaction after reading the empathy article was; did the lack of empathy make the transition to the lack of ethics easy? If the financial speculators would have had empathy for their clients or the country would that have tempered their willingness to ignore ethics?

A couple of situations that the main speaker used during the seminar.

First situation. Hurricane destroys a small town. Electricity is out. No clean water anywhere in sight. Its been a couple of weeks without all of life's necessities. You, your wife, and your three children have no water or food, you are close to death. There is a Walmart across the street. You break into it and take enough water and food to feed your family. Ethical? Moral?

Second situation is the same as the first. However, this time on the way out of Walmart with the food and water you take an HD thirty-two inch TV with you. Ethical? Moral?

Should ethics be based on the golden rule? Every religion has a version of it. From the manual they handed out at the seminar:

Buddhism: "Hurt not others with that which pains yourself."

Christianity: "Whatever you want men to do to you, do also to them."

Hinduism: "This is the sum of duty, do naught unto others what you would not have them done unto you."

Islam: "No one of you is a believer until he loves for his neighbor what he loves for himself."

Judaism: "What is hateful to you, do not do to your fellow man. This is the entire law, all the rest is commentary."

Are ethics and empathy related? Have we lost both? Should ethics be based on the golden rules? In the two situations mentioned above are both unethical, moral, or ethical?


Yesterday's answer was Lucretia Rudolph Garfield.

The date of my birth is unknown although some accounts say I was born in 1839. The date and place of my death are unknown. I was born to a slave owner whose daughter has been featured on a previous Who Am I. After his death the slave owner's mother and daughter freed his slaves. The year of freedom was either 1843 or 1851. The women of the plantation that I worked on were said to have been buying members of theirs slaves' families from other owners when they found out they were going to be sold and then giving them their freedom. I remained with the family as a paid servant after they gave me my freedom. My employer sent me too the Quaker School for Negroes in Philadelphia in the late 1850s. After graduating I returned to Virginia and married a free Black man, on April 16, 1861 -- just days before the Civil War began. The ceremony was highly unusual because the church parishioners were primarily white. We settled down just outside Richmond. I continued to work for my former owners. After the war started my employer asked me to help her in the elaborate spying system she had established in the Confederate capitol. I had considerable intelligence, as well as some acting skills. In order to get access to top-secret information, I became a dim-witted, also slightly crazy, but able servant. My employer had a friend take me along to help at functions held by Varina Davis, the wife of Confederate President Jefferson Davis. I proved myself well and was eventually taken on full-time, working in the Confederate White House until just before the end of the war. Of course, they assumed I was a slave. With the racial prejudice of the day, the assumption was that slaves were illiterate and not intelligent, and the way slave servants were trained to seem invisible, I was able to glean considerable information simply by doing my job. While serving meals and cleaning up after I overhead conversations about troop strategy and movement between the president and his advisors and military officers. Being literate, I was able to read letters and documents that were left out in the president's private study. I memorized everything word for word. President Davis came to realize there was a leak in the house, but did not suspect me until late in the war. I passed my information to my former employer or a reputable R baker. With his business, both at the bakery itself and while making deliveries, he was able to receive and pass on secrets without suspicion. In his stops at the Davis household, I would greet him at the wagon and talk briefly. Just before the baker died he told his daughter about my activities. She in turn told her nephew who recorded them in 1952. According to the nephew I was the source of the most crucial information available. He wrote:

" she was working right in the Davis home and had a photographic mind. Everything she saw on the Rebel president's desk, she could repeat word for word. Unlike most colored, she could read and write. She made a point of always coming out to my wagon when I made deliveries at the Davis' home to drop information."

At the end of the war, suspicion finally fell on me. I fled in January 1865, but attempted one last act as a Union spy and sympathizer. I tried to unsuccessfully burn down the Confederate Capitol. After the war, the federal government destroyed the records of Southern spy activities, to protect their lives, including mine. I recorded my spying activities in a diary, but family members inadvertently discarded the diary. My family rarely discussed my work -- even among family members -- fearing retaliation from lingering Confederate sympathizers and due to the political and social climate in the South. There is no record my life after the war or of my death. In 1995, the U.S. government honored me for my efforts by inducting me in the U.S. Army Military Intelligence Corps Hall of Fame in Fort Huachuca, Arizona. During the ceremony, my contribution was described:

"She certainly succeeded in a highly dangerous mission to the great benefit of the Union effort. She was one of the highest placed and most productive espionage agents of the Civil War. ... [Her information] greatly enhanced the Union's conduct of the war. ... Jefferson Davis never discovered the leak in his household staff, although he knew the Union somehow kept discovering Confederate plans." Who Am I?

Thursday, May 27, 2010

Home Alone

"There's someone knocking at my door. He is trying to open it"

"You don't know him?"

"I don't know him at all. I'm home alone"

"Did he try the knob?"

"Yes, he tried the knob."

"He's not there anymore." "He's in his car now."

"Are you home alone."

"Yes. He is in is car now. There is someone with him."

"How old are you."

"I'm twelve."

You are twelve, you are home alone. Someone is trying to break into your house. You call 911. The dispatcher you get is a trainee. Read about this amazing story here:

"He's in my room."

"Don't talk while he's in your room.

Make sure you click on the button and listen to the entire 911 call. It's heart-stopping chilling.

Thanks to a quick thinking twelve year-old girl and an amazing 911 operator trainee the girl is safe and three men that should be in jail are in jail. I see at least two heroes here. How many heroes do you see? Could have you had the presence of mind of the twelve year-old or the calm intelligence of the 911 operator? I couldn't


Yesterday's answer was Dorothy Fuldheim

I was born in Ohio inn 1832 and died in Pasadena, California in 1918. I was the daughter of a farmer dad and a mother who was a devout member of the Disciples of Christ church. I met my husband at Seminary school and followed him on to college where we began dating. I was somewhat plain in appearance, but my future husband was attracted to my keen intellect and appetite for knowledge. When he went on to a different school I stayed behind to teach school. We originally planned to marry when he graduated from college but delayed the marriage until he earn more bucks. We both twenty-six when we married at my parents' house. Instead of going on a honeymoon we set up housekeeping immediately. We were apart when he served from 1861 to 1863 n the Union Army. We remained together when we went to D.C. While there we shared intellectual interests with congenial friends; I went with him to meetings of a locally celebrated literary society. We read together, made social calls together, dined with each other, and traveled in company until we were as nearly inseparable as his career permitted. We had four sons and a daughter that lived to maturity. Three of the sons were lawyers and one son was an architect. My daughter was educated but served her husband well when he the head honcho of the country's secretary. After public service her husband came an investment banker. My husband ran for the office that Barrack holds now and won going away. A cheerful family we were. I was not particularly interested in a First Lady's social duties, I was deeply conscientious and my genuine hospitality made my dinners and twice-weekly receptions enjoyable. At the age of 49 I was still a slender, graceful little woman with clear dark eyes, brown hair with traces of silver. I researched the history of the the House furnishings with a view to restoring it to its former glory, but I contracted malaria and was unable to pursue the project. I was sa convalescent when my husband was shot. My husband was on his way to meet me. I returned to Washington by special train -- "frail, , fatigued, desperate," reported an eyewitness "but firm and quiet and full of purpose to save." As my train raced south, it was speeding so fast that the engine broke a and nearly derailed. I was thrown from her seat, but not injured. After an anxious delay I reached the House and went to her husband's bedside. For three months my husband fought for his life. While helping him my grief and devotion won the respect and sympathy of the country. After his death and funeral we went home to Ohio. For another 36 years I led a strictly private, but busy and comfortable life, active in preserving the records of my husband's career. I created a wing at oure home that became a presidential library of his papers. When I died my casket was placed above ground beside the coffin of my husband in the lower level crypt of the presidential tomb at Lake View Cemetery. Who Am I?

Wednesday, May 26, 2010

Unread Tests.

First the good story:|htmlws-sb-n|dl1|link6|

You do everything right. You are having chest pains. You don't know if it is indigestion or the beginning of heart trouble. You doctor sends you to the hospital for tests. You never hear from the hospital or the docotor. Uou assume that you are fine. Prevacid or Prilosec should do the trick. Wrong assumption if you went to this hospital:

In a way I can understand using technicians to weed out the bad cases from the good ones. It saves the doctors a lot of time. While I understand it, I certainly not in this lifetime will condone it. What do you think of the practice?


The answer to yesterday's Who Am I was Caroline Lavinia Scott Harrison

"This is a youth-oriented society, and the joke is on them because youth is a disease from which we all recover." Said the lady born in 1893 in New Jersey and died in 1989 in Ohio at the age of 96. I spent my childhood in Wisconsin. At first I was a school teacher. After my first marriage I moved to Ohio to begin my theatrical, lecturing and broadcasting careers. I hosted a local radio biography program and eventually in went national on the now Disney owned radio network. I was their first female commentator. I was approached by a representative from Scripps-Howard about taking a role in journalism. Despite My lack of experience in the field I traveled around the world, even conducting rare interviews with both Benito Mussolini and Adolf Hitler prior to World War II. I began her television career at age 54. I was the first woman anchor on the first half-hour newscast in the country. I was the first female in the United States to have my own television news analysis program. I have been referred to as the "First Lady of Television News." I was recognizable for my fiery red hair and was well known for her my controversial opinions. I could offend some members of her audience. In 1970 while live on the air, I made the following statement regarding the actions of the Ohio National Guard during the Kent State shootings, "What is wrong with our country? "We're killing our own children." Due to my reference to the shooting of the four students as murder, there were numerous calls from viewers for me to resign. I didn't resign but went on to cover the 1981 royal wedding of Prince Charles and Diana, the funeral of assassinated Egyptian prime minister Anwar Sadat and to Northern Ireland to interview the family of IRA activist/hunger striker Bobby Sands. At age 91 I still conducted interviews and read commentaries on-air three times every day. That ended when I suffered a stroke shortly after interviewing U.S. President Ronald Reagan via satellite. The station received so many phone calls from viewers asking about my condition that an automated answering machine service was set up, devoted to providing updates about my health. In 2003 I was posthumously awarded an Ohio Historical Marker for my contributions to journalism. Who Am I?

Tuesday, May 25, 2010

Ethically Sleeping

I am off to an accounting seminar. In Oregon we are on a two year licensing cycle. My license expires June 30, 2010. During the two year period that began on July 1, 2008 I am required to have eighty hours of education. Yup, we are required to have more continuing education than doctors or lawyers. Seems excessive to me. So that you don't put all your education in one twelve month period you have to have a minimum of twenty-four hours in any twelve month period. I took twenty-four hours in the period that ended June 30, 2009. That means fifty-six freaking hours of continuing from July 1, 2009 to June 30, 2010. After today I will have twenty-four hours to go. Three more boring days. In additon during the two year period four of those eighty hours are required to be in ethics. Today's class it titled "Cases in Corporate Ethics - Discussion Of Real Life Conflicts." Do you think it is ethical to sleep through an ethics seminar? Also what do you think of class titles that are longer than War And Peace? I'm anxiously awaiting your answers.

Not to long ago I posted on Facebook about how much I disliked doing laundry. I disliked doing laundry so much that I had waited a couple of weeks before tackling the task and had just completed doing six loads of laundry. I came to the conclusion that if I won the lottery I would no longer do laundry, I would just buy new clothes every week. That was before I discovered some sterling advise about laundry on the Internet. Read the new way to do laundry here:|htmlws-sb-n|dl5|link6|

Are you going to change the way you clean your clothes? Off to the seminar for a morning of ethical sleeping


Yesterday's Who Am I was Rachael Carson.

Born in 1832 in Ohio and died in Washington D.C. in 1892. I was the daughter of a Presbyterian Minister and a homemaker. I was one of three sisters. As a young girl I attended the college where my father taught. There I fell in love with Ben. In 1853 I graduated from Oxford Female Institute with a degree in music. While at the college I developed a love for English Literature, drama, music, art and painting. After graduation I stayed at the college and taught music, home economics and painting to students. In 1853 I married Ben and we had one son and two daughters together but one daughter was stillborn. My husband went on to be head honcho of the country. His residence in the big white house lasted longer than I did as I died after three years a being the first lady of the land. Some regard me as the most underrated first woman of that house. I was devoted to women's rights. I only agreed to assist John Hopkins raise money to start a medical school on the condition they must admit women. I became president of the newly formed DAR and was the first, first lady of the land to give the first recorded speech at the first congress of the DAR. In my job as first woman I urged the American public to support their country by "buying American." My love of painting translated into my painting the House china and also into painting an orchid print made available to the women and girls of America. I brought in the first Christmas tree to the famous House. I was deeply respected for my warmth, intelligence and artistic talent and for my devotion to my family and to my beliefs. During the country's centennial celebrations I became ill with tuberculosis and depression and died four months before my husband's's term ended. Who Am I?

Monday, May 24, 2010

Healthy Cities

How healthy are you?

According to the latest study here are how cities rank for health, the number following the city is the percentage that the city received on the study:

The top 10

1. Washington D.C.73.4
2. Boston 72.6
3. Minneapolis-St. Paul 71.7
4. Seattle 70.5
5. Portland, Ore. 70.4
6. Denver 69.9
7. Sacramento 65.8
8. San Francisco 64.7
9. Hartford, Conn. 64.4
10. Austin 63.9

The bottom five

1. Louisville 32.5
2. Detroit 31.9
3. Memphis 31.6
4. Birmingham 31.2
5. Oklahoma City 24.3

You can read the entire article here:

Comments are appreciated.

Who Am I?

I was born the youngest of three children in Pennsylvania on a small family farm. My mother introduced me to the world of nature which became a life long passion. I began writing at an early age and was published by age eleven. I was also an avid reader with the ocean being the common thread of my favorite books. I graduated from high school at the top of my class in 1925. I attended a college for women and became somewhat of a loner. I started with English but switched to biology. I graduated magna cum laude in 1929. When I went to graduate school I became a part-time student, taking an assistantship in the laboratory, where I worked with rats to earn money for tuition. I completed a dissertation project on the embryonic development of the pronephros in fish. I earned a master's degree in zoology. I intended to continue for a doctorate, but in I was forced to leave school to search for a full-time teaching position to help support my family. My father died suddenly, leaving me to care for my aging mother. I had a radio series about romance under water. My supervisor, pleased with the success of the radio series, asked me to write the introduction to a public brochure about the fisheries bureau; he also worked to secure me the first full-time position that became available. Sitting for the civil service exam, I outscored all other applicants and became only the second woman to be hired by the Bureau of Fisheries for a full-time, professional position. My main responsibilities were to analyze and report field data on fish populations, and to write brochures and other literature for the public. My family responsibilities increased in January when my older sister died, leaving me as the sole breadwinner for my mother and two nieces. I wrote many articles for many publications. There were so few jobs for naturalists that I switched to studying pesticides. I rose within the Fish and Wildlife Service, supervising a small writing staff by and becoming chief editor of publications. I wrote a book about the history of the ocean that became a basis for a documentary. Chapters of the book appeared in Science Digest and the Yale Review, a latter chapter winning the American Association for the Advancement of Science's. The book remained on the New York Times Best Seller list for 86 weeks, was abridged by Reader's Digest, won the National Book Award and the Burroughs Medal, and resulted in my being awarded two honorary doctorates. Not much later family tragedy struck a third time when one of the nieces I had cared for died at the age of 31, leaving a five-year-old orphan son. I took on that responsibility, adopting the boy, alongside continuing to care for my aging mother; taking a considerable toll on me. I closely followed federal proposals for widespread pesticide spraying; the USDA planned to eradicate fire ants, and other spraying programs involving chlorinated hydrocarbons and organophosphates were on the rise. For the rest of my life my main professional focus was one the dangers of pesticide overuse. I feared the dangers and worked on a book that took longer to write when it was discovered that I had breast cancer. It was a Silent Spring. My main argument was that pesticides have detrimental effects on the environment; they are more properly termed "biocides", because their effects are rarely limited to the target pests. DDT is a prime example, but other synthetic pesticides come under scrutiny as well—many of which are subject to bioaccumulation. I accused the chemical industry of intentionally spreading disinformation and public officials of accepting industry claims uncritically. Some of my book detailed cases of human pesticide poisoning, cancer, and other illnesses attributed to pesticides. In one of my last public appearances I testified before President Kennedy's Science Advisory Committee. The committee issued its report on May 15, 1963 backing ny scientific claims. Before my death I received a flurry of awards and honors: the Audubon Medal (from the National Audubon Society), the Cullum Medal (from the American Geographical Society), and induction into the American Academy of Arts and Letters. I died of a heart attack at the age of 57 in 1964. After my death I was awarded The Presidential Medal of Freedom, a US Postage stamp was named in my honor and my birthplace is a National Historic Museum. Who Am I?

Sunday, May 23, 2010

The One Thing I Won't Give A Second Chance For.

Since it is a day of rest there is no Who Am I today. Isabella Marie Boyd, also known as Cleopatra of the Secession, was yesterday's answer.

I didn't attend my high school prom. I was to shy to ask anyone out and the women that liked me were to shy to ask me. Sort of like it is now. However, thanks to the brilliant writing of Oregonian columnist Steve Duin I feel like I've been to a prom. Read this heartwarming story here:

Synply is a blog member that doesn't visit the blog much because she has a full-time job, is attending college full time, and takes care of her daughter with special needs. She visited the blog yesterday. If you want to see some great pictures of her daughter's graduation check out her blog:

My last week was as follows:

Monday I took Mom and the caregiver to a movie. We went to "Letters From Juliet." It was the ultimate chick flick, well acted, good story. Mom really enjoyed it. The caregiver spent most of the movie, much to my tremendous irritation, answering calls to her cell phone. I am a big believer in second chances both in dating and in regular life. There is almost nothing someone could to do me without me hanging in there and giving them a second chance. We all make mistakes. However, there is one thing that I will absolutely not forgive and that is answering your phone during a movie. We won't ask her to join us again when we go to the movie.

Tuesday, was an accounting seminar that I actually enjoyed. It helped that I knew the instructor. Oregon has a requirement for accountants that if you do financial statements then once a year another accountant has to look over your work. It is called "Peer Review." When I had to have a review done Brent, the instructor at the seminar, did my review. With one or two really minor exceptions he gave me a clean review.

Thursday it was the car doctor, Friday it was a leaking roof, and Saturday it was lunch with Mom.

On next week's agenda: Monday minor foot surgery, Tuesday another accounting seminar, Wednesday lunch with Mom. Thursday and Friday I hope to do some intense writing. Saturday is a night at Mom's.

The entertainment update this week:

On the Celebrity Apprentice the two finalists are Holly Robinson and Brett Michaels. Because of the battles that Michaels has been fighting, a brain aneurysm followed by a minor stroke, I really want him to win but I'm afraid it will be Holly. She is just one heck of a strong player.

On Dancing With The Stars the three finalists are the Pusssycat Doll, Nicole; The Olympic gold medalist figure skater, Evan; and the ESPN sports reporter. Erin. The quality of the dancing on the Semi-Finals was absolutely amazing and I kind of think anyone of these three would have won most previous seasons of DWTS. As for this year Nicole is the best dancer and based on that probably should be the champ but I really want Erin to win. I want Erin to win because she has just had a bad year and deserves something good to happen to her. She is also the most improved of the three. What happened to Erin? First, there was the stalker that took nude pictures of her through a hole in a wall in her hotel room and posted them on the Internet. He is now where he deserves to be, jail. Then she has been receiving death threats every week during this season. Also she was lambasted by a talk show hostess, who later apologized, for the costumes she was wearing. The hostess basically said the stalker could have seen less if he would have just waited six months and watched her on DWTS. Thankfully the hostess saw the error in making fun of stalking and called Erin to apologize. Still it is out there. That is why I am rooting for Erin.

OK, you all know the drill. What is going on in your life? Tell me all about it, your joys, your concerns, vent if you so desire, what your friends and kids are up to, or just write anything you damn well please. In addition if you are new to the blog or haven't posted before this would be a good day to introduce yourself. Good new friends my be awaiting for you!

Saturday, May 22, 2010

The Good & The Guilt

The good:|htmlws-sb-n|dl1|link3|

The guilt:|htmlws-sb-n|dl5|link5|

Comments about either article are appreciated!

Who Am I?

Yesterday's answer was Margaret Bourke-White.

Born in 1844 in West Virginia and died in Wisconsin at the age of 56. Operating from my father's hotel I provided information to General Jackson during The Civil War. I was the eldest child of some rich folks and as a teenager was a fun-loving debutante. I became a spy strictly by chance when a band of Union army soldiers saw the Confederate flag hung outside my home. They tore it down and hung a Union flag in its place. This made me angry enough, but when one of them cursed at my Mom, I was enraged. I pulled out a pistol and shot the man down. A board of inquiry exonerated me but sentries were posted around the house and officers kept close track of her activities. I profited from this enforced familiarity, charming at least one of the officers into revealing military secrets. "To him," I wrote "I am indebted for some very remarkable effusions, some withered flowers, and a great deal of important information." I conveyed the secrets to Confederate officers via my slave who carried the messages in a hollowed-out watch case. On my first attempt at spying I was caught and told I could be sentenced to death but was not, then I realized I needed to find a better way to communicate. I was not blessed with a pretty face, but a fine body. I was particularly noted for having the best looking ankles known—and I used them to my advantage. I evidently had a "winning way" with the Union troops and was most obliging in taking care of their needs. Then one evening in 1862 a Union General and his staff gathered in the parlor of the local hotel. I hid in the closet in the room, eavesdropping through a knothole I enlarged in the door. I learned that the general had been ordered east from Virginia, a move that would reduce the Union Army's strength at Front Royal. That night I rode through Union lines, using false papers to bluff my way past the sentries, and reported the news to a Confederate scout. When the Confederates advanced on Front Royal, I ran to greet General Stonewall Jackson's men, braving enemy fire that put bullet holes in my skirt. I urged an officer to inform Jackson that "the Yankee force is very small." I said to tell him to charge right down and he will catch them all. Jackson did and that evening penned a note of gratitude to me: "I thank you, for myself and for the army, for the immense service that you have rendered your country today." For my contributions I was awarded the Southern Cross of Honor. Jackson also gave me captain and honorary aide-de-camp positions. After my lover gave me up I was arrested and brought to the Old Capitol Prison in Washington. There was an inquiry concerning violations of orders that I be kept in close custody. I was held for a month before being released. I was later arrested and imprisoned a third but again was set free. I went to England where I met and married a Union naval officer. After the war I became an actress in England before returning to the United States. I divorced the officer and married someone else a year later. I began touring the country giving dramatic lectures of my life as a Civil War spy. While touring I died of a heart attack. Why am I reminded of the woman Cleopatra and the word secession? Answer that question and you can also answer the question, Who Am I?

Friday, May 21, 2010

Waitress Day

Today is waitress day. Two stories about waitress kind of stood out in my research. The first is about a waitress that was fired for a Facebook posting. Here is the article:|htmlws-sb-n|dl4|link6|

I don't think this waitress should have been fired at all. I'm one of those that thinks that food servers have one tremendously hard job. I also know from my occupation that waitress pay tax on eight per-cent of the total amount of business that they bill. That eight per cent is added right to their W-2 form. I also know the more people that they turnover per table the more tips they make. I would never in this lifetime sit at a table for three hours. And if I did the tip would definitely allow for that. In addition I just seem to be one of those guys that waitresses and waiters play to. I either look like an easy mark or a nice guy. "This table is just fun to serve." "Please come back, it was so enjoyable to see you." and so on. I know it is a bunch of crap but it makes me feel good so I tip well. The only time I drawback on tips is when the food server is rude or if they give me something that I didn't order and argue about it. I definitely think this waitress had the right to vent on Facebook and unless she mentioned the customers names, which I don't think she did, she never should she have been fired.

Now on to the next story. The closest Hooters here closed due to lack of business. Says a lot for the community, doesn't it? The only reason I ever went there was for business lunches and only because the married men clients wanted to go there. The single men clients wanted to go elsewhere, to where the food was better. Single men wanted food, married wanted? No more words, tell me what you think of the following story:

That woman is beautiful, she certainly doesn't need to lose weight in my opinion. I'm also guessing that the manager, if it is man, needs to lose a hell of lot more weight than she does.

Should have the waitress been fired for her Facebook posting? Should the waitress at Hooters be fired if she doesn't loss weight?

Yesterday's Who Am I was Calamity Jane whose real name was Martha Jane Cannary Burke

I was born in 1904 in The Bronx and died in Connecticut in 1971. My father was an inventor and engineer that believed in equality in education and opportunity for all of his children. My mom died while attending college. I was married twice, the first when I was eighteen. The next marriage was in 1939 to a writer but we divorced in 1942. I pursued a degree in Herpetology at several colleges including Columbia, Michigan, Purdue, Indiana, and Western Reserve University. I received my degree in 1927 from Cornell. I studied photography as a hobby while a very young woman. I developed the styles and techniques that I needed for various formats on my own. My father was also somewhat of a camera enthusiast and he exposed me to the wonders of the photographic lens as a youngster. I was a woman of many firsts. I was a forerunner in the newly emerging field of photojournalism, and was the first female to be hired as such. I was the first photographer for a well known financial magazine. I was the first Western photographer allowed into the Soviet Union. I was the first female photojournalist for Life magazine. I was the first female war correspondent and the first to be allowed to work in combat zones during World War II, and one of the first photographers to enter and document the death camps. I made history with the publication my her haunting photos of the Depression. I wrote six books about my international travels. I was the premiere female industrial photographer, getting her at a Steel Company around 1927. Who Am I?

Thursday, May 20, 2010

Waiting In Style

I'm a little late today. I took my car to the car doctor early this morning then it was wait, wait, wait. About four hours worth of waiting. I spent some time reading the follow-up to PRESUMED INNOCENT, titled INNOCENT, both of course being written by Scott Turow. I also went for a nice walk. Had breakfast. Made a few calls. Then after I got the car back in good health I went to a lunch appointment. How do survive a four hour wait?

Speaking of reading, what is the longest you have waited to return a library book? Can you beat the record mentioned in the following article:

That's all for today.

Yesterday's answer was Belle Starr, also known as Myra Maybelle Shirley

Today's Who Am I?

I was the eldest of six children born in 1852 in Missouri. I died in South Dakota in 1903 and asked to be born next to the only man I ever loved, Wild Bill. My mother died in 1866, We then moved to Utah where my dad died in 1867. I became the head of the family and moved us to Wyoming. I had no formal education but set myself apart from other women because I could work and socialize with tough frontier men. From digging gold to drinking in bars to dressing and cussing like man I was better than the tough guys and they accepted me. I became an expert horse rider as a very young belle. I was considered a remarkable good shot and a fearless rider. I was described both as extremely attractive and as a pretty, dark-eyed woman. I joined General Custer or General Cook as a scout and went to Arizona for the Indian Campaign. Here I started dressing like a man. While in Arizona, in the winter of 1871, I had a great many adventures with the Indians, for as a scout I had a great many dangerous missions to perform and, while I was in many close places, I always succeeded in getting away safely, for by this time I was considered the most reckless and daring rider and one of the best shots in the western country. I knew both the Buffalo and The Wild Bills. I road to Fort Laramie then on to Deadwood. During the month of June, I acted as a pony express rider carrying the U.S. mail between Deadwood and Custer, a distance of fifty miles, over one of the roughest trails in the Black Hills country. As many of the riders before me had been held up and robbed of their packages, mail and money that they carried, for that was the only means of getting mail and money between these points. It was considered the most dangerous route in the Hills, but as my reputation as a rider and quick shot was well known, I was molested very little, for the toll gatherers looked on me as being a good fellow, and they knew that I never missed my mark. I made the round trip every two days which was considered pretty good riding in that country. I remained around Deadwood all that summer visiting all the camps within an area of one hundred miles. My friend, Wild Bill, remained in Deadwood during the summer with the exception of occasional visits to the camps. I remained in the Deadwood area locating claims and going from camp to camp. One morning in the spring of 1877, I rode toward Crook City. I had gone about twelve miles out when I met the overland mail running from Cheyenne to Deadwood. Upon looking closely I saw they were pursued by Indians. The horses ran to the barn as was their custom. As the horses stopped I rode along side of the coach and found the driver lying face downwards in the boot of the stage, he having been shot by the Indians. When the stage got to the station the Indians hid in the bushes. I immediately removed all baggage from the coach except the mail. I then took the driver's seat and with all haste drove to Deadwood, carrying six passengers and the dead driver. I later went to Rapid City to pan for gold. After that, I went to Fort Pierre, driving wagon trains from Rapid city to the fort, and from Fort Pierce to Sturgis. I was married at thirty-three but not to Wild Bill. I had a daughter in 1887. Late in my career I did shows being billed as the "heroine of a thousand thrilling adventures." Who Am I? Real name too please.

Wednesday, May 19, 2010

Protecting Data

This is a first, the accounting seminar yesterday was actually pretty interesting. It was about how to protect your data and your clients' data from hackers, a crash, natural disasters and other untold things. One question, in the average year how many cell phones are left behind in cabs in the City of Chicago? I will put that number at the end of the Who Am I and you can tell me how close your guess was. I will give you a hint, I didn't know that many survived cab rides there.

Did you know that 93% of businesses that lost their computer network for more than ten days due to a disaster filed bankruptcy within year? Half the companies filed bankruptcy almost immediately.

Do you have a digital photocopier? Did you know they have hard drives on them? A copy of any document that you copy is placed on that hard drive? When you replaced the photocopier with a new product did you go to the trouble of deleting everything on the copier's hard drive? If not you sent a lot of personal data out to the masses. Maybe you don't have one but does the bank you frequent, the doctor's office you go to, the accountant's office where your tax return is prepared or other places where you take you business have one? Do they delete the information before they upgrade to a new product? Check out the following article:

What do you do to protect yourself? There really is no fail safe way, however, you can reduce your risks:

Verify all your bank accounts and data frequently.

Even though most security software, like Symantac, sends definition updates every five minutes you still should do manual updates and scans weekly at a minimum.

Don't leave your computer signed on to the Internet when you aren't at your computer.

Before you ditch your copy machine call the manufacturer and ask them if your model has a hard drive on it and then have them instruct you how to delete the information on that hard drive.

Encrypt your information. Encryption basically turns your data into gobblegook that is unreadable to anyone that tries to steal your information. Windows 7, the Ultimate version, has a program on called Bitblocker that you can use to encrypt your data.

Comments are appreciated? How close you was you answer to the cell phone question?
Who Am I?

You know the name that made me famous but do you know my real name? Born 1848 in 1848in Missouri and I was shot to death in Oklahoma in 1889. At a female academy I excelled in reading, spelling, grammar, arithmetic, deportment, Greek, Latin, Hebrew, and music, learning to play the piano. My father was a wealthy innkeeper and my mother was descended from one of two famous bickering families. My home town was burned to the ground by Confederate guerillas during the Civil War. My older brother who fought for the Confederacy with William C. Quantrill's guerillas, was killed by Union troops. During the Old West, the law of the whole nation had yet to tame that frontier which was spottily settled. This resulted in lawlessness seen in the personage of those known as outlaws-lawbreakers whose notorious reputations often exceeded their very person to mythical proportions. I was one such outlaw. From my association with outlaws such as Jesse James and the Younger brothers I reached a level of fantastic notoriety that today leaves the facts of my life not always distinguishable from the fiction. As a teenager during the Civil War I reported the positions of Union troops to Confederacy. One of my childhood friends in Missouri was Cole Younger, who served in Quantrill's guerillas with Jesse and Frank James. After the war these men turned to outlawry, primarily that of robbery of banks, trains, stagecoaches, and people. In their flights from lawmen they would sometimes hide out at my family's farm. I married in 1866. We had one daughter. My husband tried farming but shot in cold blood the man who accidentally shot his brother in a quarrel. Wanted by the law, he fled to California with Me. Two years later my husband again ran afoul of the law for passing counterfeit money and we fled with our two children to Texas. There I wore buckskins and moccasins or tight black jackets, black velvet skirts, high-topped boots, a man's Stetson hat with an ostrich plume, and twin holstered pistols. I spent much time in saloons, drinking and gambling at dice, cards, and roulette. At times I would ride my horse through the streets shooting off my pistols. This wild behavior was among the things that gave rise to my exaggerated image as a pistol-wielding outlaw. My husband was shot in Paris, Texas. As the young widow of an outlaw I left Texas, putting my children in the care of relatives. I immersed myself in outlawry: organizing, planning and fencing for the rustlers, horse thieves and bootleggers, as well as harboring them from the law. These enterprises proved lucrative enough for me to employ bribery to free my cohorts from the law whenever they were caught. When I was unable to buy off the lawmen I seduced them into looking the other way. The Hanging Judge became obsessed with bringing me to justice. I eluded him at every turn. Finally caught the judge sentenced my then husband and I to jail in Detroit. I was a model prisoner and won the respect of the prison matron. I was released but not reformed and said "I am a friend to any brave and gallant outlaw." I continued to be arrested for charges of robbery but often the hanging judge was forced to release me for lack of evidence. In 1889 while riding from the general store to my ranch I was killed by a shotgun blast to the back. My murderer was never identified. I was buried on my ranch with a marble headstone on which was engraved a bell, her horse, a star and the epitaph written by my daughter which reads:

"Shed not for her the bitter tear,
Nor give the heart to vain regret;
'Tis but the casket that lies here,
The gem that filled it sparkles yet."

Who Am I? Extra respect for the name I was born with.


Tuesday, May 18, 2010

May 18, 1980

The answer to yesterday's Who Am I was Sojourner Truth. Because I am heading out to a seminar and then spending the night at Mom's there just wasn't time for a Who Am I today.

Today is the thirtieth anniversary of the Mount St. Helens Eruption. Here are some statistics that were in yesterday's USA Today. It was in a sidebar to the following article:


57: Number of people who died May 18, 1980, after the Mount St. Helens eruption.

600: Number of truckloads of salvaged timber retrieved each day during the summer after the blast.

3: Number of minutes it took for the near-supersonic lateral blast to blow down and scorch 230 square miles of forest.

19: Number of miles from the volcano with widespread destruction from the lateral blast.

80,000: Number of feet the plume of volcanic ash rose into the air.

15: Number of days the volcanic ash cloud took to encircle Earth.

17: Number of episodes from October 1980 to 1986 in which lava eruptions began filling the crater of the mountain to build a lava dome.

91: Surface temperature of Spirit Lake on day of eruption.

4: Number, in billions of feet, of saleable lumber damaged or destroyed in the blast.

200: Number of feet the water level in Spirit Lake rose as a result of landslide debris at the beginning of the eruption.

7,000: Number of deer, elk, bear and other animals that perished in the area most affected by the eruption.

I remember that day and watched from Washington Park in Portland. If memory serves me right it was a Sunday. There had been several small eruptions prior to that date, the first one being in March of that year. Those of us that were living in Portland were more effected by later ash eruptions. There were several of those. The ash was amazing it would cover the city. People wouldn't go out with out masks. I remember one night being out when there was an ash eruption and it took me almost two hours to get home on what was normally a fifteen minute trip. The windshield wipers could only do so much. I had to stop every five minutes and clean off the windows. Fortunately after one year there were no more eruptions. The Mountain now has made an amazing recovery and has served to teach scientists a ton. You can read what has gone on with the mountain during the last thirty years in either the article in the USA Today or the following article:

Do you remember the eruption? Do remember where you were when the mountain blew its top? What do you think about the amazing recovery made by the Mountain?

Monday, May 17, 2010

Open Season

I was stunned by the information in Steve Duin's column in yesterday's Oregonian. You can read his column here:

According to the column it is open season on Americans living abroad. Americans are murdered and their deaths are never investigated. A government official is quoted in the article as saying:

"You can murder an American and nothing will be done about it. It's our national policy not to get involved when people die."

In another quote in the article, this one being from a state department employee:

"In cases of homicide not related to terrorism, the FBI or another investigative U.S. body may only become involved at the request of the host government."

I am to stunned for many words. I will just say the French have this one right, we have this one wrong. Comments are appreciated.

Today's Who Am I:

Born in 1797 in New York, I died in 1883 in Michigan. I was born into slavery to a Colonel. I wase was one of 13 children. I spoke only Dutch until I was sold from my family around the age of nine. Because of the cruel treatment I suffered at the hands of a later master, I learned to speak English quickly but with a Dutch accent. I was first sold around age 9 when my second master died,I was sold along with a herd of sheep for $100. It was during one beating when I began to find refuge in religion -- praying aloud when scared or hurt. Sometime around 1815 I fell in love with a fellow slave. His owner forbade the relationship because he did not want his slave having children with a slave he did not own. One night he visited me but was followed by his owner and son, who beat him savagely, bound him and dragged him away. He never returned. I had a daughter shortly thereafter. I was later forced by my owner to marry an older slave, we had four children. I escaped from an owner when he broke a promise to me. My infant daughter and I ended up with a nice couple that told me to call them by their names. I began devotedly attending the local Methodist church with a white teacher. I quickly became known as a remarkable preacher whose influence "was miraculous." I was wrongly accused of stealing eventually settling in New York. I had lost what savings and possessions I had. I resolved to leave and make my way as a traveling preacher. In 1843 I changed my name. That is the truth.
I settled with a grouo that were strongly anti-slavery, religiously tolerant, women's rights supporters, and pacifist in principles. While there I met Lloyd, Bill, and Frederick. I later became involved with the popular Spiritualism religious movement of the time, an offshoot of the Quakers. They believed in abolition, women's rights, non-violence, and communicating with spirits. During the Civil War I spoke on the Union's behalf, as well as for enlisting black troops for the cause and freeing slaves. In 1864 I worked among freed slaves at a government refugee camp on an island in Virginia and was employed by the National Freedman's Relief Association in Washington, D.C. I met President Abraham Lincoln in October. After the Civil War ended I continued working to help the newly freed slaves through the Freedman's Relief Association, then the Freedman's Hospital in Washington. In 1870 I began campaigning for the federal government to provide former slaves with land in the "new West." I pursued this for seven years, with little success. In 1879 I was delighted as many freed slaves began migrating west and north on their own, many settling in Kansas. I spent a year there helping refugees and speaking in white and black churches trying to gain support for the "Exodusters" as they tried to build new lives for themselves. This was my last mission. In 1890 Frances, who published the third edition of my narrative, became my traveling companion. A portion of a highway in Michigan is named after me. I was inducted in to the Woman's Hall Of Fame in 1981. I had a commemorative postage stamp in 1986. I am the First Black Woman Honored with a Bust in the U.S. Capitol (October, 2008). Who Am I?

Sunday, May 16, 2010

A Day Of Rest

There is no Who Am I today. It is Sunday, a day of rest. The answer to yesterday's Who Am I is the amazing and inspirational Alice Paul. You can read her complete biography here:

You all know what the drill is. Today is the day you give me your updates and tell me what is going on in your lives. The ups and downs. The joys and concerns. If you are new to the blog it would be great if you would introduce yourself and guess what? You might make some lifelong friends.

My last week:

As some of my Facebook friends know after avoiding it for a few weeks I did six loads of laundry on Thursday. Then I decided if I win the lottery I'm never doing laundry again. I'm just buying new clothes every week. By the way if anyone wants to friend me on Facebook I'm game. Go to:

Then search William J Dahn. A guy can always use a few more friends.

On Friday I figured out what the noise was that was keeping me up at night. The grass was so long in the backyard that the Mormon Tabernacle Choir was hiding back there and practicing at night. First, I took my machete to trim the yard a bit. Then, I took my environmentally correct battery operated mower and started the long task of cutting the grass down to size. Those battery operated mower don't do real well cutting down forests so there was a lot of stops and starts. Buzz. Turn over the mower, take the grass off the blades. Repeat. Repeat. Repeat. I made it. What an accomplishment.

There were also two dinners and one lunch with Mom. My own grocery shopping and numerous other errands. I also had to fill out an employee satisfaction survey for the firm I just completed tax season with. They have already asked me back for next year. It is nice to be wanted.

Enough about me. The entertainment update. Kicked off of Celebrity Apprentice this week, thank God, was Cindy Lauper. Winners of the Amazing Race, double darn it, was the Brothers. The Cowboys finished second because the brothers cheated and crowded in line at the airport. Dancing With The Stars sent Nicey packing. I really liked Nicey because she was fun and it was fun to watch her dance. However, it was time for her to go home. This week is Chad's time. Top Chef starts in June and in Washington, D.C. I think the producers of Top Chef are afraid of Portland, Oregon. Shouldn't those clueless producers be interested in a city that has more restaurants per mile than any city in the United States?

The blog is now yours. Give it up. Tell your secrets. Introduce yourself. Vent. Share. Dream. Dona, if you are reading, we would love an update on The Shankster.

Saturday, May 15, 2010

Inspiring Story, Inspiring Who Am I.

Not much today, just an inspirational story and what I think is an amazing woman featured in today's Who Am I? Here is the inspirational story:

Comments are appreciated about either the above story or today's Who Am I. Remember when you comment on the later don't mention names.

Today's Who Am I?

Yesterday's was Helen (Nellie) Herron Taft. Can you guess today's, email answers to

I was born in 1885 in New Jersey also dying there in 1977. I was the first born of four children to a banker dad. As Hixsite Quakers, our family believed in gender equality, education for women, and working for the betterment of society. My mom often brought me to suffrage meetings. I graduated with a Bachelor of Science degree in biology in 1the age of 16. While at college my father contracted pneumonia and died suddenly. I conducted graduate work at the what is now Columbia University and received a Master of Arts degree in sociology from the University of Pennsylvania. That fall I went to England where I studied social work . I went back to the states and eventually received a PHD in sociology. When in England I met the founder of the British suffrage movement who advocated “taking the woman’s movement to the streets.” I participated in many radical protests for woman suffrage, including hunger strikes and even three prison terms. When both Lucy and I ended up in the states we approached the National American Woman Suffrage Association, having decided to join forces toward a constitutional amendment by directly lobbying congressmen. We were allowed to take over the NAWSA Congressional Committee in Washington, D.C., but had no office, no budget and few supporters. I was only 26 but drew on my England experiences and organized the largest parade ever seen -- a spectacle unparalleled in the nation's political capitol. It wasn the eve of President Wilson’s inauguration. About 8,000 college, professional, middle- and working-class women dressed in white suffragist costumes marched in units with banners and floats down Pennsylvania Avenue from the Capitol to the White House. The goal was to gather at the Daughters of the American Revolution's Constitution Hall. The crowd was estimated at half a million people, with many verbally harassing us while police stood by. Troops finally had to be called to restore order and help us get to our destination. The parade generated more publicity than I hoped for. Newspapers carried articles for weeks, with politicians demanding investigations into police practices in Washington, and commentaries on the bystanders. The publicity opened the door for the Congressional Committee to lobby congressmen, and the president. This led to our meeting with President Wilson three times in a month. I established the Congressional Union for Woman Suffrage (CUWS), sanctioned by NAWSA and dedicated to achieving the federal amendment. By June, the Senate Committee on Women's Suffrage reported favorably on the amendment and senators prepared to debate the issue for the first time since 1887. I founded the Woman's Party for women in western states who had the vote already. Then a merger led to the creation of the National Woman’s Party under my leadership. I called a halt to any more pleading for the right to vote -- instead mounting an even more militaristic political campaign demanding passage of the women's suffrage amendment, which I named the Susan B. Anthony Amendment. After a long picketing gig I was placed in solitary confinement for two weeks and immediately began a hunger strike. Unable to walk on my release from prison, I was taken to the prison hospital. Then the prison officials put me in the "psychopathic" ward, hoping to discredit me as insane. They deprived me of sleep -- I had an electric light, directed at my face, turned on briefly every hour, every night. And they continually threatened to transfer me to St. Elizabeth's Hospital, a notorious asylum in Washington, D.C., as suffering a "mania of persecution." The hell with them I said and refused to eat. During the last week of my 22-day hunger strike, the doctors brutally forced a tube into my nose and down my throat, pouring liquids into my stomach, three times a day for three weeks. Despite the pain and illness this caused, I refused to end the hunger strike. One physician reported: "[She has] a spirit like Joan of Arc, and it is useless to try to change it. She will die but she will never give up."
On what became known as the Night of Terror at the Workhouse, it was written:

"Under orders from the superintendent as many as forty guards with clubs went on a rampage, brutalizing thirty-three jailed women. They beat Lucy , chained her hands to the cell bars above her head, and left her there for the night. They hurled Dora into a dark cell, smashed her head against an iron bed, and knocked her out cold. I was her cellmate and believed Dora Lewis to be dead, suffered a heart attack. According to affidavits, other
women were grabbed, dragged, beaten, choked, slammed, pinched, twisted, and kicked."

Newspapers across the country ran articles about the incident angering many and creating more support. With mounting public pressure, the government released all of us. I served five weeks. A Court of Appeals overturned all our convictions. Congress convened a week after the we were released and the House set a date to vote on the Susan B. Anthony Amendment. President Wilson announced his support of the amendment. The next day, the House of Representatives narrowly passed the amendment. The Senate didn't vote until October, and it failed by two votes. We kept pressure on the politicians with front-page news -- burning President Wilson's speeches at public monuments, and burning "watchfires" in front of the White House, Senate and other federal sites. Hundreds more women were arrested, conducting hunger strikes while incarcerated. The NWP urged women voters and male supporters to vote against anti-suffrage senators up for election that fall. The following election left Congress with mostly pro-suffrage members. The House reaffirmed its vote and the Senate passed the amendment by one vote. Women voted for the first time in the 1920 presidential election. The fight took 72 years -- spanning two centuries, 18 presidencies, and three wars. I went on to study law. I still had unfinished business, to "remove all remaining forms of the subjection of women." The following year I introduced the first Equal Rights Amendment: "Men and women shall have equal rights throughout the United States and every place subject to its jurisdiction." I continued to re-introduce the ERA for many years -- finally getting it through Congress in 1970. When World War II broke out, in September 1939 in Europe, the headquarters of an organization I founded became a refuge for people escaping the Nazi terror. I helped them find American sponsors, get passports and travel safely to the U.S. I said that if women had helped to end the first World War, the second one would not have been necessary. I never married, committing to a life of causes. Who Am I?

Friday, May 14, 2010

Blame The Parents

A couple of months ago the school district in the City of Newberg, Oregon decided to fine parents if their children kept skipping school. Newberg is my neighboring city. Now I learn that the California legistlature is endorsing the arresting of parents at constantly truant students.

What do you think of this trend? Frankly, I am kind of disturbed by it. I hate the idea of blaming everything on the parents. I skipped school once. I was so tired of hearing what a good kid I was (I got wild in college during my self-discovery period) so one day I did something that nobody would have ever thought I would do. Skipped school and forged the excuse note. I didn't really do that great of job on the forgery and the school called Mom. She was so stunned that it was me and not my brother that she told the school she had written the note. There was just no way I would do such a thing so Mom thought she wrote the note and forgot. However, had I been caught it should have been my allowance docked not my parents. And had anyone gone to jail over it, it should have been me. It frustrates me when I sometimes hear men and women in their fifties and sixties blaming their parents for their failures. Sure maybe they were some of the reason for the failoures but eventually you have to get over it. You also have to look in the mirror and accept some of the responsibility for your own failures. I am speaking from experience because I've failed a lot.

Do you think parents should be fined if their children continually skip school?

Today's Who Am 1?

Yesterday's was Harriett Tubman. Can you guess today's, email answers to

I have a famous name but my husband is more well-known than I am. I am known for planting cherry trees but neither my husband or I cut one down. I was born in Ohio in 1861 and died in Washington D.C. in 1943. I was the fourth child of 11 children. My dad was the law partner of a Hayes. After I visited the White House for my Mom's christening I became enamored of the White House and my dream became to live there. In school I met the sister of my future husband. I loved music and studied it enthusiastically. I attended Miami University, studying German, literature, history and the sciences. I considered becoming a lawyer, but did not pursue it; although it did teach me an appreciation of logic, politics and presenting a strong argument. After school I started a Sunday afternoon literary salon and briefly taught at two schools. At a sledding party I met a young attorney, and invited him to the literary salon. It was a long and rocky courtship. He was ardent and proposed a few times but I turned him because I didn't think he valued my opinion. He eventually convinced me that I was smarter and prettier than any other woman he knew. We married in 1886. I designed our first home. We had three children. My husband became a judge and was appointed U.S. Solicitor General in the late 1800s. We moved to D.C. where we met Teddy and his wife. My husband at one point was appointed to a position that required us to live in the Philippines. I toured China and Japan with my children, then joined hubby in Manila. We lived there four years. I fell in love with the culture. I opened our palace to everyone and insisted my family learn Spanish. Teddy appointed my husband secretary of war so we had to return to the U.S. Capital. My husband was eventually elected president and my dream of living in the White House came true. I broke with inaugural tradition by accompanying my husband in the inaugural parade down Pennsylvania Avenue. Every First Lady since then has followed my example. I took on too many projects at the same time suffering a major stroke while on the presidential yacht, paralyzing my left side and leaving me unable to speak. The media was given little information about it and, for the next year, I was seen only occasionally. My daughter and sisters took over my duties. With my husband's patient help and my determined effort I regained my speech and ability to walk, both with difficulty. I was back in control when we celebrated our 25th wedding anniversary at the White House. Despite my physical hardships, I was able to accomplish several things, one of which was enhancing the White House, Tidal Basin and Potomac Park with cherry trees. I was concerned that people had no place to listen to music or walk when the weather was good. Upon finding out that I was going to have Japanese cherry trees planted along the “speedway” (now Independence Avenue), a Japanese chemist and Japanese consul facilitated the donation of an additional 3,020 Japanese cherry trees from the mayor of Tokyo. After three years of planning and setbacks a wife of a Japanese Ambassador and I planted the first two cherry trees. After the ceremony I presented a bouquet of "American Beauty" roses to ambassador's wife. The two original trees still stand. Another accomplishment was making it easier for African-Americans to find employment at the White House. I was very versed in politics, often sitting in on important political discussions and accompanying my husband on political trips and golf outings. I was the first, First Lady to attend the nominating convention. I was also the first, First Lady to publish her autobiography. My husband was eventually appointed to his dream job, which was not president. I died in 1943 and was buried in Arlington Cemetery next to my husband – the first and only First Lady to be so, until Jackie Kennedy Onassis was buried beside John F. Kennedy. Who Am I?

Thursday, May 13, 2010

Stunning Statistics On The Health Of Children.

I forgot. Well I didn't but according to the following article 18.5 percent of doctors working in hospitals forgot to return to the task that they were working on.

I honestly don't find this surprising because doctors are people too. I know when I am interrupted it takes me a bit of time to get back to what I was doing. Sometimes never returning to the task at hand. However, my work would hardly be considered life saving while the doctors' would be.

Are you surprised by the article? How do you handle being interrupted?

I was stunned by some statistics in the following article:

"Infectious diseases such as pneumonia, diarrhea, malaria and blood poisoning account for more than two-thirds of the 8.8 million annual deaths in kids under five years of age worldwide, a new report shows. Almost half of these deaths occurred in just five countries -- China, Nigeria, India, the Democratic Republic of the Congo and Pakistan."

I am completely stunned that in today's world we are losing 8.8 million children under five per year. Wow have we ever failed.

What is your reaction to the article?


Yesterday's answer was the late great Mary Ludwig "Molly Pitcher" Hays. Although most people remember me as being underground I am more well known than most of The Dahn Report's Who Am Is. Because slave owners didn't record the birth of slaves the year of my birth is uncertain being either 1820 or 1821 in the great state of Maryland. I died in 1913 in Autumn, New York. My ancestors were brought to America from Africa in shackles. I began working at a young age first being sent away from home when I was five and loaned out to another plantation checking muskrat traps in icy cold rivers. I quickly became too sick to work and was returned, malnourished and suffering from the cold exposure. Once she recovered I was loaned out to another plantation, working as a nurse to the planter's infant child. By the age of 12 I was working as a field hand, plowing and hauling wood. At 13 because I defended a fellow slave who tried to run away, my overseer struck me in the head with a two-pound weight. This resulted in recurring narcoleptic seizures, or sleeping spells, that plagued me the rest of my life. In 1844 I married John, gaining permission to marry him from my owners. When I told my husband that my dream was to one day be free, he told me that I would never be free and if I tried running away, he would turn me in. On one of my first return visits to Maryland, I went to John's cabin in hopes of getting him to go north with me. I found that he had taken another wife. Later in 1869, I married again but never had any children. In the years before the Civil War I freed over 300 blacks from slavery in the South to freedom in the North. They nicknamed me Moses. In 1849 alone and on foot I ran away from the plantation in the middle of the night and followed the north star to free land in Pennsylvania. It came about after my master died and I heard rumors that I and two of my brothers were to be sold to a chain gang. my brothers left with me, but became scared, deciding not to take the risk, returning to the plantation. I had bravely won my freedom but realizing how alone I was I vowed that I would help my family and friends win their freedom. I found work cooking, laundering and scrubbing, and saved money to finance rescue trips. I became involved with the city's large and active abolitionist organizations and with organizers of the Underground Railroad, a secret network through which slaves were helped in escaping from bondage in the South to freedom in the North and Canada. I undertook some 20 hazardous missions in which I covertly journeyed down south, pinpointed slaves, and led them to freedom up north, at times going as far as Canada. In leading these flights, with a long rifle in hand, I warned my escapees that, if any of them even considered surrendering or returning, the penalty would be death. My persuasiveness was evident in that never on any of my missions did I lose a "passenger." My name quickly spread throughout the slave quarters and abolitionist societies, angering the Southern slaveholders, who offered $40,000 for my capture. I always avoided capture, even when my illiteracy nearly got me caught when I fell asleep under my own wanted poster. During the Civil War I served with the Union Army as a cook, laundress, nurse, scout, and spy. I continued helping others after the war. I raised money for freedmen's schools, helped destitute children and continued caring for my parents. In 1868 I transformed my family's home into the Home for Aged and Indigent Colored People. When I died in 1913 I was given a full military funeral and was buried in Fort Hill Cemetery. Who is this woman that in 1944, Eleanor Roosevelt christened the Liberty Ship after?

Wednesday, May 12, 2010


Today is Maryanne day. I think this is the day she returns to the doctor for a follow-up visit about her hand. Sending some positive vibes, healing vibes, prayers and good thoughts her direction for a good report would be appreciated!

Tomorrow is Dona's husband's day. The day he has a procedure and gets results of blood tests. Rumor has it that he is a pretty hot dude. Although I am jealous of any guy hotter than I am I am still going to muster up good vibes, positive thoughts, healing vibes, and prayers his direction for a successful procedure and good reports. It would be appreciated if you would send your choice of energy his direction.

Not near as serious but I still would like some positive thoughts sent my niece's direction. Today my sister's daughter started casting for a proposed reality show that she came up with. It is called "Who Wants to Marry my Wife" Guys who are tired of paying alimony try to find a man for their ex-wives to marry. Send some good thoughts that she finds a good cast and the show gets picked by a television station. It wouldn't be my first pick of a reality show to watch but come on it is my lovely niece and I want her to be successful. If it finds a station I may even require the blog family to watch it.

Speaking of creativity there was an interesting article in The Oregonian this morning. The Oregonian obtained it from the New York Times News Service. You can read the article by Patricia Cohen here:

The beginning of the article asks you to set a timer for one minute and then list as many uses as you can for a brick. Ok, folks I am going to trust you. Set the timer and post the uses right her on the blog. I will post mine tomorrow. Also tell me what you thought of the article.


Margaret Skapes (Arhondula Skapetorahis) was the answer to yesterday's Who Am I. Today we go even further back in history. My Mom and dad arrived in Philadelphia aboard The Osgood in 1750. I was born in the city of brotherly love four years later. I married an Irishman in 1769. After his death I married at man that was most likely my first husband's brother, often the custom in those days. I was married at age 15. My husband enlisted in the Continental Army in 1777. I was reportedly with him his entire military career including being at Valley Forge from 12-1777 through 6-1778. During the battle of Monmouth, June 28th, 1778, with temperatures approaching 100 degrees, I carried water in a bucket to the soldiers and to cool the blazing cannons. Because of this they changed my name. During the battle my husband was struck down but not killed and the cannon was ordered to be withdrawn. I immediately seized the rammer and continued to assist in serving the cannon until the battle ended. My husband was eventually killed. In 1778 I appeared before the Orphans Court, to sell a portion of his land to support my son, and to pay taxes on said property. The Court approved this sale. I then married again to an irresponsible man that lead to my financial downfall. A bill passed both Houses of the Assembly granting me an annuity for services I rendered during the Revolutionary war. It appeared satisfactorily that I had braved the hardships of the camp and dangers of the field with my husband and the bill in my favor passed without a dissenting voice. At my death it was reported in the newspaper at the time that I "Died on Sunday last in this borough, at an advanced age. She lived during the days of the American Revolution, sharing its hardships, and witnessed many scenes of blood and carnage. To the sick and wounded she was an efficient aid and had one child, a son by her first marriage, who served as a soldier in the war of 1812." In 1984 the first woman was accepted into the Daughters Of The American Revolution by using me as her Patriot ancestor. I was born in 1754 and died in 1833. Who Am I?

Tuesday, May 11, 2010

Back To The Fifties

The article starts out: "Amid complaints about high taxes and calls for a smaller government, Americans paid their lowest level of taxes last year since Harry Truman's presidency, a USA TODAY analysis of federal data found." You can read the complete article here:

Some the reasons given for the low taxes are the Stimulus Plan, Clinton & Bush tax cuts and Sales Tax. Sales tax collections are down because people are spending less.

My income tax is down but my property is up enough to make up for it. Sales Tax is a moot point for me because Oregon doesn't have a sales tax. What do you think? Are your taxes down?


Elizabeth Cady Stanton was the woman featured in yesterday's Who Am I? Try out today's. Remember to not post the answer on the blog but to email me the answers at

Born in Greece in 1892 I became a suffragette in the United States. While I attended five years of middle and high school in Greece I was taught to read and speak English in New York. My father was a successful Greek traveling tool salesman. There were five children, four daughters and a son. One of my sisters died in infancy. I was on a constant quest to find ways to escape my fate. The role of promised bride, obedient, uneducated and instant mother, subservient to the males of her family, and confined to the small-mindedness of her village, made me rebellious and a disgrace to Mom. I was determined that somehow, someday I would escape. My mom arranged a marriage for me to a family that would overlook my outspokenness for the right amount of dowry. When I found out I flew into a rage, but not before berating my mother and future mother-in-law. I even attempted to wound the would-be groom. I worked out a plan with my older brother to go to America as soon as my brother could send me a ticket. I secretly worked as a seamstress in the garment district of New York to save money to move on if I felt so inclined. While working I hired a woman to teach me how to read, write and speak English. I was determined not to be considered a "dumb foreigner." I also joined forces with the suffragettes in New York to work for the equality of women. I marched in their parades and protested wherever they needed me. When love entered my life and when I decided that the time had come to consider marriage I did two things. First, I told my beloved that I would not marry him until women got the right to vote. I wanted to be assured that I would have the backing of the laws of the United States of America in any actions that prior to the vote would not have been possible. Secondly, I designed a marriage contract that stipulated that I was to be my husband's full partner in any business ventures. The contract also stated, should I have any daughters, they too would be entitled to the same shares in the businesses as my sons, and that the girls would have a college education if they so desired. I became a leader in the Greek community in a major Ohio city. I helped found the first school to teach English to Greek immigrants. During the Depression I and my children organized the wealthy Greeks to donate food, money and clothing to the poor in the neighborhood. World War II saw me organize the Greek women into a volunteer force for the Red Cross. I taught myself how to drive by rolling the car out of the driveway in the dead of night, pushing it down the street and then starting its engine. This was one thing that my husband insisted I not attempt due to my small size (I was only 4 feet, 8 inches tall and weighed about 95 pounds). He truly feared that the cars would "strain" me. My fiery temperament may have been a factor he might have considered negative to driving etiquette. In any case, he should have known better than to tell me I could not do something. I became an American citizen long before my husband. I sent my daughter to college and encouraged her to take flying lessons in order to help the war effort. When I arrived in America, the immigration officers at Ellis Island gave me a new American name because they could not pronounce, let alone spell my Greek name. After my marriage I took on the anglicized form of my husband's name. I refused to be called by any other name the rest of my life. I died in Ohio in 1968 Who Am I?