Wednesday, June 30, 2010


Larry King retired, good! Elana Kagan is doing a great job at her confirmation hearings. When asked where she was at Christmas by Senator Lindsay Graham, she responded "Like most Jews I was probably at a Chinese restaurant." University of South Carolina are college baseball champions beating UCLA two games in a row to take the best of three series. Other than that I have nothing to talk about so I am just going to tell you what I have done today.

Just this morning I sent off my license renewal to those in charge so it looks like I will be a CPA at least until June 30, 2012. Then I've been working on a cousin reunion. These are cousins on my Mom's side of the family so many of them are in their eighties or nineties. There will be some second, third, and fourth cousins at the reunion which will be July 29 through August 1 at The Best Western Northwind in King City, Oregon. I really have great cousins and they realized it is really hard for Mom to travel to a reunion so they are bringing the reunion to Mom. I was sort of hoping we would have some prison escapees among our cousins to make our family tree more exciting. Instead we just have some really fun, intelligent, normal, and thoughtful cousins.

Because the cousins were so nice to bring the reunion to Mom I agreed to be the point person for the reunion. I had to think about it for a a while but I was able to say yes before the matches between all my fingers and toes reached the skin. It also helps that I have my cousin Belva to help me and bump ideas off of.

I've been checking out restaurants to hold our main dinner the Saturday night of cousin reunion weekend. There were a lot of nice restaurants. However, I decided that because of the age of the group it would be better to hold the dinner at the hotel and have it catered. Restaurants would work but then a lot of the elderly would have to get in an out of cars and we might make to much noise for a restuarant. I also think having the dinner at the hotel provides a more intimate atmosphere. Nancy, the sales manager at the hotel, has been absolutely marvelous and has made arrangements for us to have their conference room complete with buffet tables and enough tables and chairs to seat the expected fifty cousins. Just a note before we continue, I have been so impressed with Nancy that I would suggest that if any of you are going to attend or hold an event in the Portland area that you give her hotel a call.

This morning I decided on the menu and tomorrow at one I am meeting with the caterer to finalize everything. They are going to deliver, set-up, provide the place settings, and the chafing dishes to keep everything warm. I wanted to make sure there were choices because some people can't eat beef and some don't like chicken. This is the menu I chose:

A summer salad.
Dinner rolls
Grilled Chicken Breasts
Scalloped potatoes
Roasted seasonal veggies.
Two cakes for desert. Chocolate & White.
Soft Drinks

If there are a lot of kids that end up coming I will on the day of the event get some hot dogs that we can easily cook that night. I want it to be fun for the kids too.

I'm going to send out the final letter to the cousins on Friday to tell them how much to contribute to the buffet and to let them know what to expect. Then the next three weeks I am going to be scared stiff that I might have to get up and say something at the dinner.

The biggest event I've ever been in charge of until now was my Mom and Dad's fiftieth anniversary complete with a harp playing during dinner and a dance band playing music from the big band era after dinner. It was pretty successful and I am really hoping when all the cousins leave to go back home they will look back on cousin weekend as one hell of a good weekend.

Have you ever planned an event? Am I on the right track?


Yesterday's answer was Ida Saxton McKinley

I am a political activist, abolitionist, and suffragist that was born in 1805 and died in 1879. I was born to a dad that was an Episcopalian judge, planter, lawyer, politician, slaveholder, and Revolutionary War veteran. I was the youngest of thirteen children. My older sister begged our parents to allow her to be my Godmother. My parents consented when sis was thirteen and we maintained a very intimate relationship throughout our lives. As a young child I was described in family letters and diaries as the most self-righteous, curious and self-assured of all my siblings. It never occurred to me that I should abide by the superior judgment of my male relatives or that anyone might consider me inferior simply for being a girl. When time for my confirmation in the Episcopalian Church came I refused to recite the required pledge. I concluded that I could not agree with the pledge and would not participate in the confirmation ceremony. In my new church the Preacher advocated patience and prayer over direct action against the system. That was unsatisfactory to me. In 1829 I addressed the issue at a meeting in my church and stated that all slaveholding members of my congregation openly condemn the practice. My third church was of the Quaker faith. After my widowed sister moved in with me I was struck by the lack of options for widowed women – during this period they were mostly limited to remarriage or joining the working world – and realized the importance of education for women. I decided to become a teacher and briefly considered attending a Female Seminary. My sister and the traditional Quakers disapproved of my newfound interest in radical abolitionism but I became steadily more involved in the movement. I wrote a letter to my hero who published the letter in his publication without my permission. The letter put me in great standing among many abolitionists but its publication offended and stirred controversy within Quaker society, who openly condemned such radical activism. Sis even asked me to withdraw the letter, concerned that such publicity would alienate her from the community. Though I was initially embarrassed by the letter’s publication, I refused, and the letter was later reprinted in several puiblications. The letter gave me a considerable amount of national recognition as a figure in the abolitionist movement, which enabled me to participate in many anti-slavery events, even though I was female. At one of these events I met my husband. I was invited to speak at the Massachusetts State Legislature and testified there, becoming the first woman in the United States to address a legislative body. I was quoted in one letter "Man cannot rightfully hold his fellow man as property. Therefore, we affirm that every slaveholder is a man-stealer… To steal a man is to rob him of himself." In another letter I wrote “it is because I love the colored Americans that I want them to stay in this country; and in order to make it a happy home to them, I am trying to talk down, and write down, and live down this horrible prejudice.”
Who Am I?

Tuesday, June 29, 2010


I don't usually talk politics or religion on the blog because they are just subjects that lend themselves to arguments instead of discussions. We all have our political leanings and most likely we aren't going to change them because of something somebody writes or says. We all have our religious beliefs and we aren't going to be browbeat in to changing those beliefs by someone else. I did find this article in yesterday's USA Today on religion extremely interesting:

Quoting the article:

"the focus of untold generations of well-intentioned Christians compelled to live out the Great Commission that Jesus laid out in the Gospel of Matthew ("Go and make disciples of all nations"). The standard argumentative approach — built around "spiritual laws," A-to-B-to-Z logic, and black-and-white propositions about the one religious truth — seems more counterproductive with each passing year, more likely to repel than persuade."

Further quoting the article:

"What do Christians learn when they start listening to atheists? Henderson, author of the forthcoming book The Outsider Interviews, has found that the "I'm right/you're wrong" model is a conversation-killer par excellence. So is speaking of non-converts as "lost." "Nothing sets off an atheist more than hearing a Christian say, 'I know Jesus is God and that I'm going to heaven when I die," Henderson says. "They also notice that we often say it loudly and arrogantly, which only serves to reinforce their negative opinion of our certainty."

The two quotes really hit home with me. I do have strong religious beliefs. I believe living with a good heart. I believe in treating your fellow men and women with respect. I believe in charity. Love your fellow men and women. None of us are perfect so understand and forgive. I believe in accepting people for what they are instead of judging them for their beliefs. I believe in witnessing not brow beating. I witness by the way I lead my life, not by making you feel like you are going to hell if you have the gall not to believe the way I do. There is room in this world for people to believe differently than I do, it is what makes the world interesting and a better place. That is why I have so much trouble with some evangelists. Like my Mom's caregiver. She believes basically unless you believe the way she does you are going to hell. Any conversation starts with "I'm right and everyone else is wrong." Unless you are reborn you go to hell. You can be Ten Bundy, Jeffrey Dahmer, or an untold number of serial killers and go to heaven just as long as you are reborn before you die. You can lead a perfect life and go to hell if you aren't reborn before you die. Frankly, that is bunk. Whenever someone starts with I'm right and you are wrong they basically are making the determination themselves of who is and who is not going to heaven. By doing so they are placing themselves on a higher level than God. They are also defeating what they believe is their purpose on this earth, making you believe the way they do.

The reason I love this article is that two people with completely different views are listening to each other. Now if only Republican and Democrats could do the same thing. Let's start with getting rid of political talk radio shows and political talk television shows that serve no useful person other than to divide us.

Your comments are always appreciated.


Yesterday's answer was Marian Wright Edelman.

I was born in 1847 in Ohio and died there in 1907. I was born the elder daughter of a prominent banker. Granddad founded the city's first newspaper. I graduated from a finishing school. I was refined, charming, and strikingly attractive. I met Bill at a picnic and married him when I was twenty-three and he was twenty-seven. We had two children, both daughters. One died at age four, one never lived to see her first birthday. I had a fragile, nervous temperament and broke down when Mom and my two daughters died within months of each other. I developed epilepsy and became totally dependent on my husband. My seizures at times occurred in public including one at an inaugural ball for my governor. Although an invalid the rest of my life, I kept busy with my hobby, crocheting slippers, making gifts of literally thousands of pairs to friends and acquaintances. When my hubby became head honcho he took great care to accommodate my condition insisting that I be seated next to him at state dinners instead of at the other end of the table. At receiving lines I alone remained seated. Guests noted that whenever I was about to undergo a seizure hubby gently placed a napkin or handkerchief over my face to conceal my contorted features. When it passed, he would remove the napkin and resume whatever he was doing as if nothing had happened. My husband's patient devotion and loving attention was the talk of the capital. Someone remarked that he made it pretty hard for the the husbands in the city. Unfortunately my husband didn't finish his term thanks to his assassination. After his death I lost the will to live. Although I bore up well in days between the shooting and the president's death I could not bring myself to attend his funeral. My health eroded as I withdrew to the safety of my home in Ohio. I was cared for by my younger sister. Who Am I?

Monday, June 28, 2010

Helping Children.

Because the following article is so long I am not posting much today. The article is well worth the read and it is one of those feel good ones. Read this very heartwarming story here:

Before closing I wanted to wish the University of South Carolina's baseball team good luck in the College World Series Baseball Championship series against UCLA.

As always your comments are welcome. They don't even have to be about the subject of the day!


To celebrate children and South Carolina I chose an appropriate Who Am I for today.

I was born in 1939 and as far as I know I haven't died yet. I am most known for being a children's rights activist and was the founder of a famous defense fund. I was the youngest of five children in the same state that DR now resides. My father was a Baptist minister who installed in me that Christianity obligates one to service to others. Dad died when I was fourteen, speaking his last words to me "don't let anything stand in way of your education." I didn't having a B.S. degree, a Yale law degree and traveling the world on a scholarship. I went to law school after being arrested for my activism. I was the first of my nationality to be admitted to the a southern state's bar. I worked on racial justice issues and established a Head Start Program in my community. I moved to Washington, D.C. to help Martin Luther King, Jr. with some issues. While there I founded a research center. The poverty stricken children became my issues. I became their voice.
I persuaded Congress to overhaul foster care, support adoption, improve child care, help homeless children, and also help abused and neglected children. My most famous quote is "If you don’t like the way the world is, you have an obligation to change it. Just do it one step at a time.” I still contineu to advocate youth pregnancy prevention, child-care funding, prenatal care, greater parental responsibility in teaching values and curtailing children’s exposure to the barrage of violent images transmitted by mass media. I met my husband during a tour of Robert Kennedy of the poverty ridden Delta slums. My law professor husband and I have three sons. I have many awards including Barnard Medal of Distinction, Albert Schweitzer Prize of Humanitarianism, The Presidential Medial of Freedom, Community of Christ International Peace Award, and The Boy Scouts of America Silver Buffalo Award. I currently serve on the board of New York's Robin Hood Foundation, Who Am I?

Sunday, June 27, 2010

Update Day

Hope things are going well with today and at the end of today you will look back on a great day! The answer to yesterday's Who Am I was Dolley Madison.


Last week, two nights at Mom's, a nice dinner with Mom on Sunday, A great birthday lunch on Monday with Mom, A birthday dinner with Sister Tuesday, A birthday lunch with my Albany cousins on Wednesday, the movie Knight and Day on Thursday, and two days of rest on Friday and Saturday. I wasn't really feeling that well later in the week so outside of a little over an hour with Mom on Saturday I rested. I'm still not one hundred percent so a few vibes and prayers would appreciated. Speaking of vibes and prayers please send some Red Whistle's way. She is a reader of the blog and posts sometimes. Her Mom has cancer. So muster up the famous blog healing powers and send them her way.

On the agenda for next week: One night at Mom's. Finalizing the dinner plans for the cousin reunion Mom and I are hosting the last week in July. Now that I have completed all my education I need to fill out the license renewal and send the State one hundred and fifty bucks so that I can keep using the CPA designation. The cost of the education was over a thousand bucks. It's expensive to have some titles. If I changed my title to Education Bum it sure would be cheaper.


I thought this was extremely good news so decided to share it today:


Good news for Pat and I on the entertainment front. Joan Rivers is being sued. She is being sued for saying she was being sued:|htmlws-main-n|dl8|link6|

On Top Chef it was a good week for women. Tracy won the Quickfire Challenge and my gal Kelly won the elimination challenge! I'm still rooting for her.

I didn't like the movie Knight And Day near as much as the critics did. I was in my realistic mood and it just bothered me how a car could go down the freeway at hundred miles an hour when nobody has their foot on the gas pedal. I did find out during the movie why I love my Mom so damn much and that sometimes it is expensive being her son. Tom Cruise comes on the screen, Mom says "you are better looking them him." I dropped my popcorn all over the floor on that one and then had to take out a second mortgage on my house to go by another bag of it. But how can you not love a Mom that sees you that way? It was worth two bags of popcorn.

It is now you turn to update me on your lives. Post whatever you damn well please today (or any day for that matter). Introduce yourself today if the mood strikes you (or any day for that matter). Looking forward to learning about your lives.


In addition to being touched by Mom's comment at the movie, I was also touched my the birthday card my sister sent me. I hope I can live up the way the two most important women in my life view me. You can click on the card to make it larger.

Page One:

Page Two

Saturday, June 26, 2010

Man Up Portland!

According to the second annual joint survey by Mars Chocolates, Combo's Snacks and research expert Bert Spelling of the fifty most manliest cities in the United States Portland, Oregon comes in last. Charlotte, North Carolina is first. Los Angeles is forty-eighth, Seattle is thirtieth, Memphis is twenty-eighth, Nashville is third, Indianapolis is eighth, Milwaukee is sixth, and Columbia, South Carolina comes in thirteenth. You can read the article here:

The study used criteria like the number of home improvement stores, steak houses, pickup trucks, motorcycles per capita and the number of "manly jobs" like fire fighters, police officers, construction workers and EMT personnel.

What do you think of the survey? Is your city manly? Do you think I need to move to a different city to become manly?

The next subject I am going to file under an extremely stupid Facebook joke gone bad.|htmlws-sb-n|dl1|link6|

OK, It was extremely stupid of the to young mother to post a picture of her baby smoking a bong on Facebook. But are the authorities making way to much over it? Should she lose custody of her baby because of it? Yes and no are my answers.

Hope this turns out to be a good Saturday for you. I am going to spend the day trying to man up.


Yesterday's answer was Marie LaVeau

I was born in North Carolina in 1768 and died in Washington D.C. in 1849. My maiden name is the same as Thomas's last name. I was born to Quaker parents and had no formal education. We moved to Philadelphia when I was fifteen. I am considered one of if not the most colorful firsts. I possessed a sparkling personality and a kind heart. I married a Philadelphia lawyer and fellow Quaker. We had two sons. A yellow fever epidemic hit Philadelphia, claiming the lives of my husband and one of my sons within weeks of each other. My characteristic optimism enabled me to get through this tragedy and continue to live life to its fullest. I attended various social functions in Philadelphia, then the capital of the United States. At one of the events through a then duel senator I was introduced to a representative from Virginia. Despite him being seventeen years my senior we soon began a courtship, culminating in his proposal of marriage and my acceptance. Despite my strict Quaker upbringing because he was an Episcopalian I was ostracized from the Society of Friends (Quakers) for marrying outside my faith. Freed of the quaintness of the Quaker doctrine my liveliness began to manifest itself in my appearance as well as my personality. I began taking snuff, and wearing bright clothing and turbans adorned with jewelry or feathers. When my husband was appointed Secretary of Sate we moved to a city and I took to its society like a duck takes to water. The then single president asked me to serve as hostess at the famous house's social events. My extroversion served to enliven the often austere atmosphere of the administration and in addition providing the harmony needed to quell the political tensions. Through my special inviting manner the often tense political, as well as social, atmosphere of the time could become wonderfully calm. When I became first I made the White House a most delightful place to visit. I was beautiful gregarious, buoyant, and cheerful, the regular social gatherings I hosted were lively events at which anyone would feel welcome. I had an expansive memory for names and the ability to make everyone at home in the House. I began holding Wednesday evening "drawing rooms" (receptions) that became immensely popular with politicians, diplomats, and the citizenry. I was renowned for my charm and knowledge of politics and current events. I was an asset to my husband's political career as my outgoing demeanor complimented his reserved and stonefaced disposition and my political insight influenced his decisions. When British troops invaded the city I courageously stayed behind until vital state documents and famous portraits were removed to safety. After fleeing the city with my husband we returned three days later to find the House burned down. Though my second marriage was childless it was always romantic. Unfortunately my surviving son from my first marriage had such awful spending habits that he reduced me to poverty. To survive after my second husband's death I had to sell both his home and his papers to pay off creditors. I was buried in the Congressional Cemetery with all the dignitaries attending. Later my remains were moved to another state to be next to my second husband. Who Am I?

Friday, June 25, 2010

Have I Met You Before? Weird Food.

Have you ever been in the grocery store when you run into someone that seems familiar but for the life of you, you not only can't remember who they are but whether or not you have even met them? The chance are if you had that happen to you then you are neither a gay man or a woman. Read the following article and then tell me if you fit the mold or are you the exception that proves the rule?;_ylt=AlqRqfuBGjnEL4npKJDGE.as0NUE;_ylu=X3oDMTNrdGY3NmJmBGFzc2V0A3RpbWUvMjAxMDA2MjQvMDg1OTkxOTk4ODQ4MDAEY2NvZGUDbW9zdHBvcHVsYXIEY3BvcwM4BHBvcwM1BHB0A2hvbWVfY29rZQRzZWMDeW5faGVhZGxpbmVfbGlzdARzbGsDaGF2ZXdlbWV0YmVm

OK, before you read the next article, even though it is about eating make sure you aren't eating at the time you are reading the article. This is a gag me with a spoon article. You can comment on it if you like.

The questions of the day. Have I met your before? What is the weirdest thing you have eaten? I ate snake one time. Notice I said one time.

Hope this is great Friday for you.


Yesterday's answer was Clara Booth Luce

I was born in maybe New Orleans in 1801 and died there in 1881. I was the daughter of a white planter a free Creole woman of color. I married a free person of color. After my husband died I became a hairdresser to rich white folk. I took a lover and we lived in a common law marriage with a reportedly fifteen children, including my namesake daughter. Both that daughter and I practiced the same art although Pat might scoff at me calling it an art. My daughter and I had great influence over our multiracial following. In 1874 as many as twelve thousand spectators, both black and white, swarmed to the shores of Lake Pontchartrain to catch a glimpse of my daughter performing our legendary rites. Scholars believe I had more powerful powers than my daughter but she arranged more elaborate public events. Most of my magical career is unsubstantiated. I was said to have had a snake named Zombi after an African God. Oral traditions suggested that part of my magic mixed Roman Catholic beliefs, including saints, with African spirits and religious concepts. Some scholars believe that I feared magical powers of divination that were actually based on my network of informants which I developed while working as a hairdresser. Some assert that I ran my own brothel and cultivated informants in that way as well. I excelled at obtaining inside information on my wealthy patrons by instilling fear in their servants whom I either paid or "cured." I was reportedly buried in Saint Louis Cemetery #1 in New Orleans in the Glapion family crypt. The tomb continues to attract visitors who draw three "x"s (XXX) on its side, in the hopes that my spirit will grant them a wish. Some others state that I am buried in other tombs, but they may be confusing the resting places of other priestesses of New Orleans. Don't you dare call me a witch but you can answer the question, Who Am I?

Thursday, June 24, 2010


First, wanted to wish DR some luck today. Here is an email we got from her today:

"Any good vibes and positive thoughts you could send this direction this afternoon will be appreciated. Dr. R is doing the procedure on my foot at 2:15 (let's hope he's running on time. The only thing he said was it would create a very large blister and walking would be "uncomfortable" for several days. He did NOT define uncomfortable. I admit to a low pain threshold (I'm a wimp) and memories of the lip surgery/recovery are not pleasant, so I admit to being a major twitch this morning. Hopefully, I've awfulized it in my mind to the point where it will be a walk in the park, compared to my imagination ."

You have all my thoughts and prayers, DR!

What will the world be like in 2050? World War III will be going on and cancer will be history as a cure will have been found. Limbs will be easily replaced. Computers will talk to each other just like humans. We will be in the midst of an energy crisis. Here is an article where fifteen hundred Americans were polled about the future:|htmlws-sb-n|dl1|link3|

Do you agree with the article? What other things are you predicting for 2050? I am predicting flying cars and a cure for diabetes. I also think people will be living long into their hundreds. Both national and local elections will be done by computer.

Your turn.


The Swedish Nightingale, Jenny Lind was yesterday's answer. Elvis Costello was the Elvis that wrote an opera about her that was originally performed in Oakland.

I was born in New York in 1903 and died in 1987 in Washington, D.C. of a brain tumor.
My father was a businessman and Mom was a violinist. I became famous in many careers. I gained equal fame as an editor, playwright, politician, journalist, and diplomat. All those careers came after I was an understudy of a famous actress of that time. Acting was my original ambition. I soon lost interest when my parents wanted me to tour Europe with them. There I decided that I wanted to work in the women's suffrage movement. It was also there that I married a man twenty-four years my senior. After we had one daughter I divorced my abusive husband. Then I joined the staff of Vogue, as an editorial assistant. Having found direction in the wake of a tragedy I developed a serious interest in writing. I became associate editor of Vanity Fair magazine, and began writing short sketches satirizing New York society and its figures. I resigned to become a playwright. I remarried at age thirty-two to a man five years my elder who was a world renowned publisher. In my first month of my second marriage my first play opened on Broadway and was panned by critics. My second play was also panned by critics but was loved by audiences and ended after six hundred and fifty-seven performance. During WWII I served as a journalist for LIFE magazine. I went to both France and China. When the US entered the war I went through Africa, India, China, and Burma. These travels lead me to run for a seat in the House of Representatives. I won with ease by alleging FDR brought the country into the war unprepared. After visiting American troops in Italy I advocated immediate aid to Italian war victims. I was reelected. During my time in office my only child, my daughter, was killed in a car accident. I was so devastated by the loss of her that I suffered a nervous breakdown. After leaving the House I wrote a wrote a screenplay that received an Academy Award nomination. I followed that with a play. I went back into politics to campaign for Ike. After he won he appointed me as an ambassador to Italy. After settling a serious dispute between two countries I became seriously ill with arsenic poisoning and resigned. I occupied my time after that painting and creating mosaics until I was appointed again to an ambassador position. A senator from Oregon fought against that appointment and after I said that he was kicked in the head by a horse I had to resign due to all the fallout from the remark. I showed up again in politics when Ronnie appointed me to an advisory board. Who Am I?

Wednesday, June 23, 2010

A Relative Good Lunch

I had a great lunch with my cousins from Albany today. Of course Mom joined us. Don & Belva bought the lunch for my birthday. They are just two of the nicest people you would ever want to meet. They are in the good relative column. Here is the nice card they bought me, page one first, and page two second. Click on the pictures to enlarge them.

Do you think someone should be fired for posing for Playboy? What kind of judgment do you think a person uses by posing nude without getting the employer's permission?
After reading the following article weigh in with your opinion.|htmlws-sb-n|dl1|link6|

Normally I come down on the side of what a person does on their own time as long as it is legal is their own darn business. However, in this case I do think it would have been better judgment to ask the employer's permission before posing in Playboy. I do think firing is a little severe. I am really hoping administrative leave and a warning is as far as it goes

Now if the above lady ends up unemployed she will have a lot of time to drink coffee. According to the following article that can be really healthy.;_ylt=Am7u5YW_3C0mlCOlwN4Lau6s0NUE;_ylu=X3oDMTRiOW9hbDJ1BGFzc2V0A2xpdmVzY2llbmNlLzIwMTAwNjIyL2NvZmZlZXNteXN0ZXJpb3VzYmVuZWZpdHNtb3VudARjY29kZQNtb3N0cG9wdWxhcgRjcG9zAzkEcG9zAzYEcHQDaG9tZV9jb2tlBHNlYwN5bl9oZWFkbGluZV9saXN0BHNsawNjb2ZmZWVzbXlzdGU

Are you going to start drinking more coffee now? And will it be right after you pose for Playboy?


Yesterday's answer: Idawalley Zorada Lewis

I was the illegitimate daughter of a schoolteacher who married my father. I was born in 1820 and died in 1887 I was a Swede whose voice brought me fame. My nickname incorporated my Country and the last name of a nurse. I sang soprano across Europe. I was invited to America by a circus man where I gave ninety-three large-scale concerts. I earned $250,000 from these concerts. When I returned to Europe I became a philanthropist, and professor of singing. I sang from a very early age. My Mom ran a day school for girls out of her home. When I was nine I was overheard singing by the maid of the main dancer of the local Opera. The maid was astounded by my extraordinary voice and returned the next day with the ballet dancer, who arranged an audition and who helped me get accepted at the Royal Theater School. My first stage performance was at age 10. I became famous even though I fought stage fright my entire career. I had many men after me, including Hans Christian Anderson, but my only marriage was at age thirty-one. We had three children together. Most of the 1840s I spent in Germany. In 1847 we gave my first London performance in front of the Queen. Mendelssohn was pleased. His premature death that year devastated me. I once gave a free concert to raise money to open a twenty bed infirmary for sick children named after me. After visiting Paris I became the only female member of a classical Germany fraternity. When the circus man mortgaged all his property and called in all his favors to bring me to America, he said. "A visit from such a woman who regards her artistic powers as a gift from Heaven and who helps the afflicted and distressed will be a blessing to America." The circus man made a cool half of million on my concerts and I garnered a quarter million. One of my concerts helped build a church in Chicago. After my second visit to America I returned to Europe and ceased my professional singing career but continued to perform in a number of oratorios, concerts, and choruses, with a particular interest in Bach. Even though I only performed on the East Coast of America a town in California is named after me. Not to mention a Polka being named after me. Elvis, not that Elvis, wrote an opera about me. Who Am I?

Tuesday, June 22, 2010

Dangerous Jobs For Teens

I'm back on the home front. Sis and her husband are back from Utah so I just got back from Mom's. I really did have a nice day yesterday. Great lunch, lot of emails, lot of Facebook posts, and a lot of phone calls. We also had a nice dinner. Tonight Sis and Her husband are taking me to Rose's, tomorrow lunch with cousins. Thursday is a day of rest. I'm going to need it!

The following article kind of scared the heck out of me. There was a lot of bashing of Abby Sunderland's parents for letting her sail around the world. I almost think what the parents in the following article are letting their daughter do is worse.|htmlws-sb-n|dl4|link3|

I was stunned by this statement in the article: "More youths ages 10 to 19 die from injuries than from all other causes combined"

Now on to one of my favorite subjects, texting while driving. It is those damn teenagers right? They are the ones that are texting the most. Not according to the following article:

What do you think about the above articles? What was the most dangerous job you had as a teenager? Believe it or not mine was weeding onions. I worked in the onion fields in Northern California. The working conditions were awful. The pay was a buck an hour. I had to quit when I got a third degree sunburn. Then I found a job as box boy (now called courtesy clerks) at a grocery store and what a relief that was.


Yesterday's answer: Laura Ingersoll Secord.

I am a keeper of a house and was credited with saving eighteen lives (some say twenty-five) in my time. I was once called the bravest woman in the world. I won the Gold Lifesaving Medal. I was born in Rhode Island in 1842 and died there in 1911. On the night of my death all the vessels that were anchored in my Harbor tolled their bells in my honor. My dad was the original keeper and Mom followed suit but after they both died within four months of each other I stepped up to the plate. My exploits were detailed in national newspapers such as Harper's Weekly, the New York Tribune, and Putnam's Magazine. I met President Ulysses S. Grant, Vice-President Schuyler Colfax, General William Tecumseh Sherman and Admiral George Dewey. I was married once but it was brief so I was childless. I am the only keeper to have a house named after me. I am also the subject of a folk song. Where we lived was completely surrounded by water which meant as the oldest of four children I rowed my siblings to school every day and returned with supplies that were needed. When I was officially appointed keeper of the house my salary was a light five hundred bucks a year. I was the best known keeper of my era, that was due to the rescues that I performed. One time I rescued four young men that couldn't swim after their boat capsized when one tried to rock the boat to scare his friends. I also rescued a sailor in the dead of winter. Then there was the time I saved three sheepherders and all their sheep as well. The boat turned over in storm. That rescue was the subject of a painting commissioned by the U.S. Coast guard. That rescue also lead to a parade in my honor and the gift of a Mahogany rowboat with red velvet cushions, gold braid around the gunwales, and gold plated oarlocks. The boat was named The Rescue. My reputation was such that the house was overloaded with sightseers trying to catch a glimpse of me. After the stories of my feats spread The President and The Vice President visited me. When President Grant landed he said as he steeped out of his boat "I have come to see the heroine of the house, and to see her I'd get wet up to my armpits if necessary." Who Am I?

Monday, June 21, 2010


Not much today as I am at my Mom's. Sister is in Utah and will be back tomorrow. As always with this caregiver she gets sick when we need her the most so she took off yesterday for her home with a supposed cold. I spent last night at Mom's and am spending today and tonight there. Since Mom had more to do with me being brought into this world on this day then I did, I am going to turn this change of plans into a celebration of her and make her day as plesant as possible. I do get a lot of food this week. Mom is taking me to lunch today. Sis is taking me to dinner tomorrow. My favorite cousins are coming up from Albany and taking me to lunch on Wednesday. And a friend is going to take me to lunch or dinner later in the week if her schedule allows. Food. My idea of a good birthday week.

Among the things I am celebrating today are good stories. Like this one:|htmlws-main-n|dl9|link3|

A lot of the last year I spent a lot of time getting in touch with my inner doofus. Going out into the world with two different shoes on and almost going out into the world with my panst on backwards. So today we celebrate a member of the stronger sex that got in touch with her inner doofus:

Abraham Lincoln once said when he was asked why he was so nice to his enemies and why he just didn't get rid of them, "Am I not getting rid of my enemies if I make them my friends?" So today's Who Am I celebrates a person that helped win a battle against us by helping a country that was an enemy at the time.


I am a war hero that has a chocolate company named after me. I was born in Massachusetts in 1775. Following the aftermath of the American Revolution, my father moved us to Canada. After the move I married a Loyalist. We lived in Ontario. When my husband was wounded in a battle I went searching for him. As I was tending to his wounds we ran into three U.S. soldiers who wanted to kill us but a Canadian captain stopped them. The American army launched another attack capturing Fort George. On the evening of June 21 I became aware of plans for a surprise attack on troops led by British Lieutenant James FitzGibbon at Beaver Dams, which would have furthered American control in the Niagara Peninsula. While my husband was still suffering the effects of his injury from the previous battle I set out early the next morning to warn Lieutenant FitzGibbon. I walked approximately twenty miles before arriving at a camp of allied warriors who led me the rest of the way. The account of my trek changed repeatedly throughout my life and I never divulged how I learned of the attack. I had to wait until age eighty-five before the Prince of Wales recognized my war of 1812 feat. I died in 1868. My grave marker reads: "To perpetuate the name and fame of, who walked alone nearly 20 miles by a circuitous difficult and perilous route, through woods and swamps and over miry roads to warn a British outpost at DeCew’s Falls of an intended attack and thereby enabled Lt. FitzGibbon on the 24th June 1813, with less than 50 men of H.M. 49th Regt., about 15 militiamen and a small force of Six Nations and other Indians under Capt. William Johnson Kerr and Dominique Ducharmes to surprise and attack the enemy at Beechwoods (or Beaver Dams) and after a short engagement, to capture Col. Bosler of the U.S. Army and his entire force of 542 men with two field pieces." Who Am I?

Sunday, June 20, 2010

Things I Learned From My Dad.

My dad and my brother, Grover, not long before dad died. I took the picture:

Mom and dad's wedding picture, I didn't take the picture: (People say I look like him, I'm flattered.)

I wanted to honor dads today and wish them a very Happy Fathers' Day. The best way for me to honor dads is to honor my own dad. Things I learned from my dad:


One summer vacation between my sophomore and junior year in high school we visited the Los Angeles area. Dad made a wrong turn and accidentally ended up on the Golden State Freeway going the wrong way. He immediately pulled off to the side of the freeway out of traffic. A man driving by yelled out to dad "Go back to Oregon, where you belong." Dad responded. "Where in the hell do you think I am trying to go."


You Are My Sunshine. She Will Be Coming Around The Mountain When She Comes. Songs my dad always sang to us when we were little. Either riding in the car or sitting on his lap.


W and S were high school friends of my sister. They married right after high school graduation. They came to say good bye to my parents. They were broke. When they were done visiting dad followed them out to their car. I was outside playing catch with a friend. I saw dad give them twenty bucks (a lot of money then) and I heard dad tell them, "This isn't a loan. You will be successful and when that happens give twenty dollars to someone who needs it."


We were members of a very small Methodist Church. They really couldn't afford to hire chores around the church to be done so the parishioners pitched in. One day dad was helping to paint the church when he reached a little to far and the ladder went out from under him, he broke some ribs. When they took him to the emergency room the doctor on duty happened to be a friend of the family. "John, what happened?" The doctor asked. Dad responded, "I was up on the ladder making peace with the lord and the damn devil pulled the ladder out from under me."


Mom, dad, and I decided to go for a ride. Dad just took his checkbook and driver's license, left all his other identification at home. On the way home we stopped at the grocery store to pick up a few things and for dad to cash a check. When we got up to the checkout stand the clerk said "I need two pieces of I.D.". Without missing a beat dad said "they are right here, my wife and my son." The clerk not only laughed, she said, "that's good enough for me."


I was maybe six. We lived in Pocatello, Idaho. We had a kid from hell living next door to us. He was seven and made you dream of retroactive birth control. He would come over almost every day and lean on our doorbell. It drove dad nuts. Dad finally had it and came up with a plan to scare the heck out Freddie. Dad enlisted me in his plan. One day we were sitting home when someone was leaning on the doorbell. We put dad's plan into action. Dad got down on his hands and knees and started doing an amazing imitation of a Pit Bull. BARK, RUFF, BARK, RUFF! Barking all the way to the door and when he got there I opened the door. BARK, RUFF, BARK, RUFF! It wasn't Freddie standing there, it was two people handing out religious material.


I shared this with the readers of the blog before but the most traumatic time in our family is when I was eighteen. I was in car accident and not expected to live. The same day of the accident my sister had a baby that lived for a few minutes and then died. My Mom was recovering from a surgery she had three weeks earlier for uterine cancer. It is the oldest that I ever remember my dad looking. He could have split. He didn't. He drove the one hundred and eighty mile trip to see me daily, called and checked on my sister daily, went with Mom to all her doctor appointments, all while running the family business. I lived, my sister later had a beautiful daughter, and Mom beat the odds and recovered from cancer. That wouldn't have happened without dad's support.


It was an unscheduled party. Can't have a party without ice cream. Mom sent dad to the store to get chocolate ice cream. Dad came back with some weird flavor that wasn't chocolate. Dad assumed the brand name "Browns" meant it was chocolate. Instead of being mad, Mom said, "well, it wasn't what I asked for but it was still damn good ice cream."


His favorite saying was, "You can have anything I own but you can't have my woman."


Another story I've told before on the blog. We always had big Christmas celebrations. My aunt and uncle and their children always joined us as did some friends. We usually had twenty or more people for Christmas Eve dinner. That was the night when Santa Claus came. With so many people there it made for a ton of gifts under the tree. I was seven. The gifts always appeared after we were asked to leave for a while. Then the youngest kids would hand out the gifts. After all the gifts were handed out I didn't get one. Just as I was trying to remember what horrible thing I had done to be ignored by Santa the doorbell rang. Dad, said "Bill, that is for you." I opened the door and looked out through the softly falling snow, tied to the tree in our front yard was a beautiful Shetland pony.


Two months before dad died we just couldn't take care of him anymore. It was just to emotionally exhausting to care for someone with dementia. We found a really good facility with really good care. The people there loved dad. When dad died and the managers of the facility originally said the caregivers couldn't have the time off to go to dad's memorial there was a mini revolt. Several said they would quit if the didn't get the time off. Special arrangements were made and nine of the caregivers went to dad's memorial.


When dad was getting ready to leave this world I was holding his hand thanking him for being a great dad and telling him that in heaven there was an endless supply orange slices waiting for him, he said to me. "You have been a great son." The last words he spoke to me. Every day I try to be as good of son to Mom as dad thought I was to him. When I leave this world, I hope they say I was successful.

What did you learn from your dad?


Yesterday's Who Am I was Mary Todd Lincoln.

Saturday, June 19, 2010

Saturday Updates.

Today is Update Day because tomorrow I am going to honor Fathers. Here is my week: Movie, The Karate Kid, one Lunch with Mom, one dinner with the family, one get together to say good-bye to my niece and her family, one accounting seminar, and forgettable tasks like paying bills.

Next week. A lot of time at Mom's. She hasn't been walking real well lately and I'm uncomfortable leaving her alone. The caregiver is doing nights and I am doing days. Sister and her husband took off for Utah yesterday. Sis and her husband wanted to spend Fathers' Day with her daughter. He really has been more of a father to her than her real dad and my niece wants to honor that. I support that. They will be back Tuesday.

I do have a selfish task on Monday. Hide from everyone. I just don't want to spend a day answering phone calls where people tell me how old I am or ask me how old are you? I mean I will accept all gifts left on my doorstep but for heaven's sake don't remind me of an age I don't want to be. I have come up with a stock answer: "Some days I feel eighty, other days I think I can do things a thirty year-old can do, my mind is stuck on twenty-one and I can't divulge my real age because it is a matter of national security."

Entertainment update. Top Chef started and sadly it looks liked they stacked the deck against a woman winning this season with their choice of candidates.

Now three quick movie capsule reviews:


ROBIN HOOD. Loved the movie. Directed by Ridley Scott. Great performances by Russell Crowe, William Hurt, and Cate Blanchett. Blanchett's performance was so brilliant that I didn't know it was her. I had to look it up on the Internet when I got home. This wasn't your normal story about Robin Hood. Instead it was the story of how he became a legend. What led him to be Robin Hood. Brilliant take on an old story. Good battle scenes. Good history. I liked it better than the critics. Five Footballs.


THE KARATE KID. Remake. Directed by Harald Zwart. Jackie Chan gives a career changing performance as maintenance man and Kung Fu instructor, Mr. Han. Will Smith's son, Jaden, gives a charming breakout performance as the shy kid being taught Kung Fu. Wen Wen Han gives a great first performance as Jaden's love interest. Beautiful cinematography. I liked it as well as the critics. Well paced, well acted. Four Footballs.


KILLERS. Hated the movie. Dumb. OK, it would have to improve to be dumb. I'm with the critics on this but the fan reviews seem to like it much better than I did. Stars Ashton Kutcher, Katherine Heigl, Tom Selleck, and Catherine O'hara. Directed by Robert Luketic. The basic plot from Yahoo: Spencer Aimes is just your average, undercover, government-hired super-assassin accustomed to a life of exotic European locales, flashy sports cars and even flashier women until he meets Jen Kornfeldt, a beautiful, fun-loving computer tech recovering from a bad break-up, he finds true love and happily trades international intrigue for domestic bliss. Three years later, Spencer and Jen are still enjoying a picture-perfect marriage until the morning after Spencer's 30th birthday. That's when Spencer and Jen learn he's the target of a multi-million dollar hit. Promising plot but stupidly written. One football for being willing to put this stupid of a movie out in public.

The Blog is now yours. Tell me everything that is going in your lives. Introduce yourself. Vent if you need to. Shout joys if you want to. Post anything you damn well please.


Yesterday's answer was Fannie Lou Hamer

Born in Kentucky in 1818 and died in Illinois in 1882. I was the fourth of seven children. My Mom died after the seventh child was born. My dad was a state senator. A year and a half after Mom died, dad married again and they had nine children. My stepmother was not kind to us stepchildren and this lead to me having many insecurities later in life. Despite growing up with slaves in my house, I hated slavery. Because dad went against society trends I began my formal education when I was eight. At fourteen I went to a select academy for young ladies. After school I went to live with my sister and became a popular belle. That is where I met my future husband who was ten years my senior and an aspiring lawyer. We became engaged but because of his poor background, the young lawyer asked for the release from our engagement. After much depression, a friend arranged for us to get together again. After a year of clandestine meetings and secret preparations, I informed the family that we were getting married that day. We had four sons. Because of his income we first lived in an $8-a-week room at a tavern. Three years later we moved to the only home we would ever own. My husband's work kept him away but we stayed in touch through letters. I successfully predicted my husband would one day become president. We moved to D.C. when he was elected to The House. My husband decided not to run for re-election. My dad died of cholera and soon after my son died of diphtheria. I could not speak my son's name without crying. My husband's dream of the presidency continued which is way I convinced him to decline the governorship of The Oregon Territory. I wanted a proud entry in to D.C. but because of an assassination attempt we had to sneak into the city. Nobody loved me with Southerners thinking I was a traitor and Northerners thinking I was a spy. I lost a second son who died of a fever. My three half-brothers and a half-sister's husband were killed in a war. This impaired me both physically and emotionally. Despite my own failings I frequently visited hospitals, bringing food and flowers, reading to the soldiers, writing them letters, and once raised $1,000 for a Christmas dinner. My closest friend, was a former slave who made me aware of the thousands of Virginia slaves who had moved to Washington but lived in harsh conditions. I raised money for them through the Contraband Relief Association. After the war another son died from a respiratory infection. I had now lost my mother, father, husband, three half-brothers, and three sons. “One by one,” I said, “I have consigned to their resting place my idolized ones, and now, in this world there is nothing left for me but the deepest anguish and desolation.” My remaining son had me declared insane and I was confined to a
nursing home. My supporters believed the son had ulterior motives and worked to get me released. They were successful and I was released to live with my sister in the same house where I had married my husband. I died at age 63 and was buried next to my husband and three sons. My wedding ring, thin from wear, still bore the words “Love Is Eternal.” Who Am I?

Friday, June 18, 2010

Sex And Cancer

Not much today as I am off to an accounting seminar about bankruptcy. It is the last one that I have to attend for a few months and boy am I glad that my education month is almost over!

Interesting article about selfishness and sex. The article pretty much destroys everything I had learned before I read the article. Basically the article states that your sex life and your partner's sex life will be better if you ignore their needs and concentrate on your own. Doesn't that go against everything we have learned for years? You can read the article here:|htmlws-main-n|dl3|link5|

The other article is on cancer but this one doesn't surprise me as much as the above article does. This article states that when doctors find cancer and it is in the early stages that the doctors have a tendency to overtreat it. You can read the article here:

As always your comments are appreciated.


Yesterday's answer was Rachel Donelson Robards Jackson, Andrew Jackson's wife.

I was born in 1917 and died in 1977. I am often remembered for the quote "Nobody's free until everybody's free." I attended the 1964 Democratic National Convention to fight for the right for the Freedom Party that I helped found to be seated. My plain-spoken manner and fervent belief in the Biblical righteousness of my cause gained me a reputation as an electrifying speaker and constant champion of civil rights. Without my knowledge or consent, I was sterilized in 1961 by a white doctor as a part of the state of Mississippi's plan to reduce the number of poor blacks in the state. In addition, at the time black people who registered to vote in the South faced serious hardships due to institutionalized racism, including harassment, the loss of their jobs, physical beatings, and lynchings. Despite that I was the first volunteer to register. I later said, "I guess if I'd had any sense, I'd have been a little scared - but what was the point of being scared? The only thing they [white people] could do was kill me, and it seemed they'd been trying to do that a little bit at a time since I could remember." I traveled on a rented bus with other attendees of Bevel's sermon to Indianola, Mississippi to register. I began singing Christian hymns, such as "Go Tell It on the Mountain" and "This Little Light of Mine," to the group in order to bolster their resolve. The hymns also reflected my belief that the civil rights struggle was a deeply spiritual one. I was falsely arrested and beaten close to death by white jailers. It took me a month to recover. That didn't stop me. I formed a new party whose purpose was to challenge Mississippi's all white and anti-civil writes delegation to the 1964 Democratic Convention. I kept up my activism and ran for Congress in 1964 and 1965 and was seated as a member Mississippi's legitimate delegation to the 1968 Democratic Convention where I spoke out against the Vietnam War. I continued to work on other projects, including grassroots-level Head Start programs, the Freedom Farm Cooperative in Sunflower County, and Martin Luther King, Jr.'s Poor People's Campaign. I was also inducted as an honorary member of Delta Sigma Theta sorority. I died of breast cancer in 1977 in Mississippi. My tombstone reads, "I am sick and tired of being sick and tired." I had an opera written about me. Who Am I?

Thursday, June 17, 2010

I'm Cool!

Is there anything better than a five year-old young girl telling you she loves you, that you are cool and amazing? My brother's eldest daughter stopped by Mom's last night with her three children. They are moving to Pittsburgh where her husband starts a new job on June 28. This was kind of a good-bye meeting. Mom has a mobile wheelchair that she really doesn't use. All of my niece's kids wanted to go for a ride in the wheelchair. So I fired the thing up and spent about a hour going around Mom's house with young rugrats taking turns sitting in my lap. Before they left this is the note I got from the youngest daughter, Charlie. Click on the photo to enlarge it.

I've waited all me life to be called cool! Speaking about cool, the following article about the different uses of beer is kind of cool too!|htmlws-sb-n|dl5|link3|

I'm heading right out now to get a six pack of beer and then I'm going to start my slug banishment program. What about you? Are you cool? Are you going out and buy a six pack of beer? When you get home are you going to use it to polish furniture or are you going to just sit down and just drink one or two?


Yesterday's answer was Stagecoach Mary Fields.

I was born in 1767 in Virginia and died in 1828 in Tennessee. I was considered both beautiful and vivacious when I was young. I was married twice. With my second husband we adopted two sons and were legal guardians for eight more children, six boys and one girl. The first marriage was to a Captain that was subject to irrational fits of jealousy and we separated in 1790. I met my second husband when he was a boarder in Mom's Tennessee home. I married him before the divorce from my first husband was final. Because of my second husband's political standing we made the marriage official after my first divorce was final. In the election of 1828 my husband's political opponents had a field day accusing me of being a bigamist among other things. Because of my second husband's military record and despite the accusations against me he won the election in a landslide. I died right before the electoral ball for the new President. He blamed his opposition for my death. The 1828election is considered by some historians to be one of the meanest in American history. While it lasted my second husband and I enjoyed a genuine love match. In 1813 I wrote, "Do not my Beloved Husband let the love of Country, fame and honor let you forget you have me. Without you I would think them all empty shadows. You will say this is not the Language of a Patriot but it is the language of a faithful wife..." When I died, He was inconsolable. He refused to believe I was actually dead and insisted that blankets be laid on my body in case she woke up and needed warmth. He built a tomb for me in my flower garden. According to his granddaughter he visited my grave every night at sunset. He hung my portrait at the foot of his bed so I would be the first thing he saw in the morning and the last thing he saw at night, and said, "Heaven will be no heaven for me if she is not there." Who Am I?

Wednesday, June 16, 2010

Elections In The Tank

I don't know what is going on in this world but is just seems like there is to much trauma going on to close to me. Got word last night that my brother has an elevated PSA and is going under exploratory tests today. Please send vibes, prayers, good thoughts, and what ever you can muster his direction. It would be appreciated. Now on to today's blog entry.

I really think the game plan for elections that is written about in the following article is misguided. Everyone in this one county in New York gets six votes per election in this year's elections. The reason they did this was to end up with more diverse elected officials. I am pretty old school, one person, one vote. I can see so much wrong with giving everyone six votes. Seems like there should be a better way.

When I think about elections I can't help but think about commodes. I mean the way the politicians have run the country the past nineteen years they have put the country in the tank. Maybe we can improve the country the same way this inventive company is improving the commode:|htmlws-sb-n|dl6|link3|

I'm seriously considering buying three of these for the two and a half bathrooms in my townhouse. You sure wouldn't have to struggle for conversations if you had guests!

What do you think? Vote early vote often? Or stick with one vote? How about your next remodeling project going with the new fangled bathroom?


Yesterday's answer was Susan McKinney Steward

I was born a slave in Tennessee in 1832, grew up an orphan and never married. My family were nuns. I was referred to as a gun toting, hard drinking female of the wild west who was heavy, six feet tall and short tempered. I shared a penchant for physical altercations on a regular basis. I had no formal education. After gaining freedom after the Civil War I traveled North to Ohio. There I worked for a convent and formed a close bond with Mother Amadeus. When the nuns moved to Montana and I learned of Mother Amadeus' failing health, I went west to help out. Having nursed Mother Amadeus back to health I decided to stay and help build the St. Peter's mission school. When turned away from the mission because of my behavior, the nuns financed me in my own business. I opened a cafe. My big heart drove my business into the ground several times because I would feed the hungry at no cost. In 1895 I found a job that suited me, as a U.S. mail coach driver for the Cascade County region of central Montana. My mule, Moses, and I never missed a day which lead to my nickname. According to the Great Falls Examiner I broke more of others' noses in fights than any other person in central Montana. When I became to old to deliver the mail, at age seventy I opened a laundry service. I died of heart failure in 1914. Who Am I?

Tuesday, June 15, 2010

Dating & Cheating.

I found these two articles interesting. The first article is about how we are influenced by strangers in our romantic choices:|htmlws-sb-n|dl5|link4|

According to the above article if a member of their own sex finds a member of the opposite sex attractive other members we will find him or her attractive too. If men are at a party and several men are looking at a particular woman then men not looking will eventually follow suit. If there are five men talking to one woman then other men will glide over to talk to her too. I find that surprising because when I am at the party I don't go were all the men are, I go to the woman standing alone. First, I don't like competition. Second, I've learned over time that the most physically beautiful women can become ugly as you get to know them and that the woman standing in the corner that has nice features can become absolutely beautiful as you get to know her. What is interesting about the article is that in this case women are exactly the same as men. If they find five women talking to a man they are heading is direction too.

The next article is about cheating. About women cheating on men. I found the statistics kind of surprising. Twenty-two percent of men cheat. I thought that was kind of low. I really don't know why I thought it was low because none of the married men in my circle of friends cheat. It just seems low. According to the article eighteen percent of women cheat. I also find that kind of low. In the article four men report in on what it was like to be cheated on and what they learned from the experience. In the first case to much attention to work to little attention to the woman, he second it was to much booze for the woman, in the third case be aware during rough spots, and in the last case a history of cheating didn't change.|htmlws-sb-n|dl4|link3|

I also found interesting the poll that they took at the end of the article asking if you should give a cheater a second chance. At the time I read the article (it could change as more votes come in) forty-nine percent said no way, forty-five percent said it depends on the circumstances, and only six percent said mistakes happen work it out. I honestly think I could forgive my partner but I could never forget it. That would be so bad for the relationship that I would end it. I'm pretty sure I could remain friends with her, however, if we were still together the trust I had would be gone and the suspicion would be to great to be fair to her. Could you forgive a cheating spouse or significant other?

I would love your comments on either article.


Yesterday's answer was Freda McDonald aka Josephine Baker

I was born in 1847 and died in 1918, both in New York. I was the seventh of ten children. I was a mix of European, African and Indian heritage. While there isn't anything on record about my early education, in 1867 I entered the New York Medical College for Women, graduating in three years as class valedictorian. The students and faculty voted me to be the 1870 class valedictorian. I earned this honor by studying at all hours, especially when my classmates slept. I also refused to let the taunting of male medical students during shared clinic hours at Bellevue Hospital deter me. Despite my achievement, New York newspapers did not print my valedictory. I did my postgraduate work at Long Island College Hospital. After graduation I established my medical practice in my Brooklyn home. It was slow to start, but soon word spread about my skill and patients grew more diverse: young and old, Black and white, poor and rich. My first husband was a traveling preacher and we had two children, a boy and a girl. Despite my full medical practice I also attended to seniors at the Brooklyn Home for Aged Colored People. My first husband died in 1892 and I married again in 1896. My second husband was an infantry chaplain. I often followed him in to battle and treated wounded soldiers. I was New York's first female doctor and the nations third. Who Am I?

Monday, June 14, 2010

Health Notes.

Hope this day has been and will be a good one for you. Today on the blog we have health issues on the agenda but first I want to ask for some positive thoughts, prayers, and vibes for Dona. I received an email from her husband, Frank, also known as The Shankster. He told me that Dona got some bad news last week and is having tests today. Let's get those famous blog healing powers in high gear and in Dona's direction!

Now on to three health subjects.

First up is that the AMA wants more accuracy from insurance companies. One in five claims is filed in error. Yup, we all suspected that the insurance companies filed our claims wrong and now we have proof! You can read the article here:

Next up is that some blood pressure medicine can cause cancer. Just be aware and double check your medication to make sure yours isn't on the list. If your blood pressure medicine is on the list it would be a good idea to consult with your doctor about a change in medication. You can read the article here:

The last health note is kind of sad but a sign of the times and the economy. Cancer survivors are delaying treatments because they can't afford the treatments. I find that just tragic. Certainly there has to be a way to help them. Here is the article:

As always your comments are appreciated.


I was born in Missouri in 1906.and died in Paris in 1975. Both my parents were former slaves. I dropped out of school at age 12 and lived as a street child in the slums of St. Louis, sleeping in cardboard shelters and scavenging for food in garbage cans. I was married five times and adopted twelve children. My family was referred to a The Rainbow Tribe. I was decorated for my undercover work for the French Resistance during World War II. I was the first American-born woman to receive the French honor, the Croix De Guerre. I helped a lot of people who were in danger from the Nazis get visas and passports to leave France. Later in 1941 I went to the French colonies in North Africa; the stated reason was my health but the real reason was to continue helping the Resistance. From a base in Morocco I made tours of Spain and pinned notes with the information I gathered inside my underwear (counting on her celebrity to avoid a strip search.) Later I toured to entertain Allied soldiers in North Africa. I even persuaded Egypt's King Farouk to make a public appearance at one of my concerts, a subtle indication of which side his officially neutral country leaned toward. Later I performed at Buchenwald for the liberated inmates who were too frail to be moved. After the war I was a civil rights activist. I made charges of racism against the Stork Club in New York, where I had been refused service. Actress Grace Kelly, who was at the club at the time, rushed over to me and, took me by the arm and stormed out with her entire party, vowing to never return. We became close friends after the incident. I refused to perform for segregated audiences and integrated the Las Vegas nightclubs. I am better known in France then I am in the United States and although I am most remembered as a singer I was also a dancer and was the first African-American actress to star in a major motion picture. I was bi-sexual having a confirmed affair with Frida Kahlo. Ernest Hemingway called me "… the most sensational woman anyone ever saw." Who Am I?

Sunday, June 13, 2010

Weekly Updates.

The day of rest means no Who Am I. Yesterday's answer was the late and great Marian Anderson. My update: last week there were two days and nights at Mom's, two days at a boring accounting seminars, one lawn mowing experience, one movie (Killers, don't bother), two chapters written, and other things that I am sure I did but don't remember them. Next week is one night at Mom's and on Friday my final accounting seminar until probably December. YEA!!!

Now some updates from people that are part of the blog here. I read Mary Z's blog and she is having an eye problem. She has one more appointment with a specialist and then goes back to her regular eye doctor. DR is in Indiana reconnecting with her Mom and meeting relatives. I am really looking forward to hearing all about it when she returns. I got an update from Maryanne, the lady that they thought would lose her hand after a dog bite, here is the first paragraph:

"The hand specialist released me from care after my appointment this past Wednesday. The wound still has a bit to go, but now I can cover the whole thing with a single 2" x 2" gauze pad. Originally it took 3 overlapping 4" x 4" pads."

If there is any change in the news about The Shankster and Dona, I know they will bring us up to date!

Now some of my family concerns. My cousin L, the one that is dealing with two active cancers, is heading to the Mayo Clinic in Arizona for some special treatments. Please wish her well and successful treatments. I also received a phone call from another cousin and her husband has late stage prostate cancer. So prayers and good vibes J's direction would be completely appreciated.

Entertainment Update:

The winner of Top Chef Master was Marcus Samuellson. Top Chef starts this coming Wednesday at 9, 8 Central time. I tried to watch America's Got Talent again but just didn't finish it. It is just to painful for me to watch people embarrass themselves. I will review Robin Hood this coming week. I also plan on going to The Karate Kid tomorrow.

One final thing. Next week the Update Day will be Saturday. Sunday I want to honor fathers on Fathers' Day.

The blog is now yours! Tell me about your lives. Introduce yourself. Vent. Complain. Share. Post anything you damn well please!


Speaking of updates here are some updated statistics on the BP Oil Spill:

11,300 miles: The distance around the world the current amount of leaked oil would stretch if it was placed in milk jugs lined up side by side. To quantify, that's farther than New York to Buenos Aires, Argentina, and back

102: The number of school gymnasiums that could theoretically be filled floor-to-ceiling with oil from the Gulf of Mexico oil spill.

11: Number of workers missing and presumed dead following the BP rig explosion.

You can read the article where I found these statistics here:

Saturday, June 12, 2010

Deleting Data From A Printer's Hard Drive.

Some days I have to look high and low to find a subject to discuss on the blog. I look at The Oregonian, The USA Today, Yahoo.Com, AOL News, different Internet sites, various large city newspaper sites like the LA Times, Chicago Sun Times, and The NY Times. I also examine my life closely to see if there is anything hiding in the boredom that might interest or help someone. Then they are days like today where the subject for the day just miraculously appears in my mail box.

I really admire men like my brother-in-law, Bob, and Dona's husband, The Shankster. They have that ability to fix things around the house that has seemed to have escaped me. I can fix a tax return with the best of them. Want someone to stand in your place before the IRS and eloquently argue your case, then I am your man. Want an expert witness that has an honest face to help you win your case? I'm there. Seldom lose. OK, I lied. I'm being humble. I never lose. Although I've been known to expertly change some light bulbs, do a darn good job of mowing the lawn, and getting a stain out, you basically want to keep me away from anything else that needs fixing in any house. Around any house, I'm useless. How good am I at taking any machine apart and putting it back together? I can do it if you want to end up with an unworkable machine with a lot of leftover parts. But to actually take any machine apart and put it back together correctly just file me under useless and call The Shankster or Bob.

A couple of weeks ago after going to a seminar about protecting data I posted an entry on the blog about the dangers of having hard drives on copy machines. Here are the links to that post and to the article within that post where some dude bought three used copy machines and what he found one them:

The post:

The article:

Since the seminar and since reading that article I've been losing sleep over how in the world to get rid of the data on the hard drive of my copy machine should I decide to trade it in for a newer version. Been praying almost every night for someone to step up to the plate and show me how. God love Dona and The Shankster because just a couple of days Dona sent me an email showing me The Shankster's three step plan to get rid of data on a hard drive of a copy machine. Enjoy The Shankster's three step plan:




Don't you love The Shankster's method? Are you going to use it?

We are still sending prayers, positive thoughts, and good vibes Dona and The Shankster's way for good reports from their recent visit to the doctor.


Yesterday's answer was Maria Mitchell.

I was born in Philadelphia in either 1897 or 1902 and died in Portland, Oregon in 1993. Despite my city of death my memorial was held in front of over 2,000 admirers at Carnegie Hall. I was the eldest of three daughters born to a loader at a Terminal Market and teacher. Dad suffered a head wound at work and died shortly after my birth. Since teaching didn't pay that well Mom found work cleaning, laundering, and scrubbing floors. My high school education was focused on getting a job until people heard me sing. They had me sing at assemblies. I graduated at age 18 and applied to a local music school where I was rejected because of my color. I started singing in church when I was six. They soon called me "The Baby Contralto." Because we couldn't afford a music instructor I taught myself how to sing. I would often perform at three places in one night. I eventually had the confidence to charge five bucks per performance. I eventually toured black colleges and churches in the South. Soon that five bucks turned in one hundred bucks a performance. It lead to my first solo recital at Carnegie Hall. A New York Times critic wrote: “A true mezzo-soprano, she encompassed both ranges with full power, expressive feeling, dynamic contrast, and utmost delicacy.” Despite this success, my engagements were stagnating; I was still performing mainly for black audiences. I went to England to study which lead to a performance at London’s Wigmore Hall. Throughout my life I experienced racism, but the most famous event occurred in 1939. We tried to rent Washington, D.C.’s Constitutional Hall, the city’s foremost center, but was told no dates were available. We would have walked away with that response but a rival manager asked about renting the hall for the same dates and was told they were open. The hall’s director told us the truth, even yelling before slamming down the phone, “No Negro will ever appear in this hall while I am manager.” The public was outraged, famous musicians protested, and First Lady Eleanor Roosevelt resigned from the Daughters of the American Revolution (DAR), who owned the hall. Secretary of the Interior Harold Ickes arranged a free open-air concert on the steps of the Lincoln Memorial for Easter Sunday. I sang before 75,000 people and millions of radio listeners. Several weeks later I gave a private concert at the White House, where President Franklin D. Roosevelt was entertaining King George VI and Queen Elizabeth of Britain. During World War II and the Korean War, I entertained troops in hospitals and bases. On Easter Sunday in 1965 I gave my final concert at Carnegie Hall. Among many awards I have the American Medal of Freedom and the National Medal of Arts. Who Am I?

Friday, June 11, 2010

Around The World

Abby Sunderland, the sixteen year-old girl that set out to be the youngest woman to sail around the world, on the day before yesterday she lost contact with the world and set off emergency beacons. Yesterday she was spotted, she is fine, and rescue boats on the way to her. Should her parents have let a daughter that young go off by herself on a grueling trip around the world? I'm on the fence. Part of me says let the girl go for her dream and then another part of me asks, are you freaking crazy?

Kyron Horman, a seven year-old boy that went missing on June 4, 2010, is still missing. Search teams from several counties in Oregon met yesterday and have expanded the search for him. The Missing Kyron Horman Facebook Page now has over thirty-three thousand members. When I went to the page I was surprised at the number of messages making accusations towards the family. There also seems to be a lot of judgments about the family not speaking out yet. They have issued a statement through the police but haven't held a press conference. The other bone of contention is that the step mom went to an exercise class. Some people found that unusual. Do you find that unusual? Do you think the family should speak out? Here is what I think. People react to tragedy differently and cope differently. Some just can't face the world and roll up in a ball avoiding all contact with the outside. Others stand on the tallest building and yell at the top of their lungs. Some people cope by being with family, others cope by going swimming. I think the judgments and accusations should stop and people should let the family handle the situation the best way they can for them. The thing that trumps all is the boy's safe return. Your take on it?

The World Cup starts today. This is soccer's premier event. For us here in the states the main match this weekend is USA vs. England. What are the referees for that game doing to prepare for their job? They are learning American cuss words so they know when they are being abused. Think I am kidding? Read the following article:

From sports to driving. We do it all here. According to the GMAC web site 20% of licensed drivers failed GMAC's driving test. That translates to thirty-eight million drivers nationwide. Here is the article:

I got sixteen of the twenty questions right for a passing score of eighty percent. On three of the missed I was more cautious then their answers. You can take the test here:

What was your score?


I was born in 1818 and died in 1889. I was the first cousin four times removed from Benjamin. I had nine brothers and sisters. My parents were Quakers. The Quakers believed in equal education for women so my parents insisted that I receive the same quality of education as boys received. The Quaker religion taught, among other things, intellectual equality between the sexes. Additionally, Nantucket's importance as a whaling port meant the wives of sailors were left for months and sometimes years to manage affairs while their husbands were at sea, thus fostering an atmosphere of relative independence and equality for the women who called the island home. Women still lacked the right to own property or to vote. When I was eleven dad built his own school. I was both a student and teaching assistant at his school. Dad taught me astronomy using his personal telescope At age twelve and a half, I aided dad in calculating the exact moment of annular eclipse. One year after opening my own school I was offered a job as first librarian and worked their for eighteen years. I once discovered my own comet and it was named after me. This gave me worldwide fame. I was the second woman to discover a comet. I was the first woman member of the American Academy of Arts and Sciences and of the American Association for the Advancement of Science. During my life I left the Quaker faith and followed Unitarian principles. In protest against slavery, I stopped wearing clothes made of cotton. I was posthumously inducted into the U.S. National Women's Hall of Fame. I was the namesake of a World War II Liberty ship. I was known for the famous quote, "We have a hunger of the mind. We ask for all of the knowledge around us and the more we get, the more we desire." Who Am I?

Thursday, June 10, 2010

What I Learned.

I have spent the last two days becoming informed in various accounting subjects and this is what I learned that had nothing to do with accounting:

Boredom is exhausting.

Philadelphia lawyers are better speakers than Georgia accountants.

Men are slobs and have very bad aim. Could I get away with using the women's rest room at future seminars? I'm not a neat freak but come on men hit the damn urinal and don't forget to flush.

Men don't read instructions. The sign under the rest room light that says "to save energy turn out the light when you leave" means, guess what? Turn out the light when you leave. Why was I the only one turning out that light all day?

Even a bad book makes the day go faster. Harlen Coben is a good author but his GONE FOR GOOD was so far fetched that even I didn't believe it.

When you first arrive at the seminar introduce yourself to the administrator who keeps track of attendance. Then if you sneak out for an hour or two they will know you were there first thing in the morning.

When they make that announcement at the beginning of the seminar, "please shut off your cell phone or put it on vibrate" nobody think it means their cell phone.

Pack a lunch because usually the food they serve there isn't all that hot.

Who Am I will return tomorrow. Yesterday's answer was Harriett Beecher Stowe.

To keep you busy is a following article that suggest what five TV shows should be made into movies:

My five are: The Good Wife, 24, Lost, Glee, and have to throw a comedy in there, How I Met Your Mother. What are yours?

Wednesday, June 9, 2010

Lost Loves - The Final Chapter

He remembered how they felt the first time they kissed. He felt like he had been given a gift more precious than the finest piece of Cyrstal. So beautiful, yet so fragile. Despite the strength in her beauty he felt an overhwhelming need to proctect the gift he had just been given. It was one of those moments in time frozen on the heart. It was then he knew he had met the woman that he wanted to share his life with.

As their relationship grew he helped her enroll in college and paid for her tutition. She was studying to be a para-legal. She quit King's. He helped her get a job as a secretary at a law firm. Now it was his birthday. He was going to make the night as special for her as she was sure to make it for him. She had made reservations at Comstock's, the most prestigious and newest restaurant in Century City. A night of dinner and dancing. It was going to be the most important night of his life and he was sure for her too. While she no doubt called ahead and ordered a birthday cake he hadn't called ahead to arrange his moment. He was a private person and he sure in the hell wasn't going to turn a private moment into a public one. The night no doubt was going to cost him at least a week's pay.

They arrived at Comstock's in time for their six o'clock reservations. The place was beautiful. The decor could easily be describe as lusciously romantic. They ate a leisurely dinner, he eating a perfectly cooked Filet Mignon and she the perfectly cooked Lobster Tail. While waiting for desert they decided to try the dance floor. The restaurant was featuring big band music with a lead vocalist professionally spilling out Sinatra tunes. The dance floor was dimly lit under the most incredibly looking chandeliers. He was dressed in a tailored suit with a tie that she had boiught for him. She was dressed in a glamorous tight fitting powder blue evening gown. He held her hand as they walked to the dance floor. When they arrived at the dance floor he bowed and she curtsied. He took her left hand and placed his right hand gently in the middle of her back. They started their waltz, the dance floor was packed, for him as they glided across the floor there was only one person in the room. He looked into her magnetic eyes as she smiled back with love in her eyes. The words of the song just seemed so appropriate:

"With each word your tenderness grows,
Tearing my fear apart...
And that laugh that wrinkles your nose,
It touches my foolish heart."

He whispered, "I love you."

"How did I get so lucky to find a man like you?"

"I'm the lucky one. I'm the envy of every man here."

"You look so handsome in that tie."

Lost in the moment he could barely hear the music but he knew the words. He had thought of that song so many times when they were together.

"There is nothing for me but to love you,
And the way you look tonight."

They continued their in sync dancing oblivious to others on the floor stopping their dances to watch them. He gently kissed her cheek. She gently put her head on his shoulder. The music stopped and the room broke out in applause.

He walked her back to the table. This was the perfect time. After they sat down he took her hand, "I have something I want to ask you."


He reached into his pocket and pulled at a small box. He opened it and said. "Will you marry me?"

She started to cry. She hugged him. Their embrace seemed to last forever.

"I've waited for this moment since the first day I met you. When you walked into King's looking so lost. I fell in love with you the minute you asked if we served food."

He took out his hankerchief and wipped the tears from her eyes and silently said:

"Is that a yes?

Still sobbing, she took a deep breath. "In my dreams I always said yes but I can't. I can't risk destroying the only man I have and will ever love. I love you to much to say yes."

"Come on beautiful, yes is such an easy word to spit out."

"We are from two different worlds. Before I met you when didh't have enough to eat on I did more than dance to make ends meet. I have no family and you are from the perfect Leave It To Beaver family."

He had always suspected that secret about her past and it didn't make a difference to him. This was just the first time she confessed it to him.

"I don't care. Love overcomes all. We can still learn from each other."

"You are such a romantic but I can't outrun my past. If it ever came out about what I did for money what we know would be destroyed. Your family would be embarassed, they would disown us."

"My family wants what is best for me, they would grow to love you as much as I do,"

"That is a nice thought but I know what the reaction to my past has been and would be. Even if your family accepted me your career wouldn't. You are going to be successful, you are going to be an important part of your community, and if we had kids I know you would be part of their school. If my past came out that world would come crumbling down. The only way to pick up the pieces would be for me to leave you then. It will hurt you less if I leave your now."

She passionately kissed him and then she got up to leave turning to him to speak those dreadful words through the sobs.

"Thank you for the most the two most wonderful years of my life. Know in your heart that I will always love you. It will be easier for both of us if you don't call anymore."

She hurried towards the door. He got up to run after her. At the door she turned around, shaking her head, and he could read her lips as she mouthed, "No! No", disappearing into the night.

He stood there not knowing what to do or where to go. The waitress grabbed his arm "Would you like a drink." He proceeded to get drunk and didn't sober up until he moved to Oregon.

He was startled back to today by those words "you have waited to long to dial, please hang up and try your call again." He hung the phone up and looked at the paper with the number on it that a friend of hers had given him a couple of years ago. He stared at the phone. Could he make the call?

(off to the seminar will respond to messages after five tomorrow, unless they have
Internet hookup at the hotel where the seminar is.)


Yesterday's answer was Emma Goldman.

I was an American abolitionist born in 1811 in Connecticut and died there in 1896. I was the daughter of an outspoken religious leader and a deeply religious woman who died when I was four. I was the sister of an educator and author and three clergymen brothers. I enrolled in the seminary run by my eldest sister where I received a traditionally "male" education. At twenty-five I married a professor at the seminary and an ardent critic of slavery. Our family supported the Underground Railroad and housed several fugitive slaves in our home. When Congress passed the Fugitive Slave Law, prohibiting assistance to fugitives I was moved to present my objections on paper. The first installment of my most famous work appeared in the antislavery journal, National Era. Upon meeting me, Abraham Lincoln allegedly remarked, "So you're the little lady who started this great war." After the war I created an integrated school in Mandarin for children and adults. The novel that made me famous had a lot of people crying uncle. Tom would have been so proud. I lived that last of my twenty-three years next to Mark Twain. Who Am I?