Thursday, May 21, 2009

World's Smallest Cat

Meet Mr. Peebles, the world's smallest cat according to the Guinness Book of World Records. Mr. Peebles was rescued by a veterinarian from a barn cat life in Tazewell County, Illinois. She took him back to her clinic and Mr. Peebles has taken up residence there.
The cat weighs 3.1 pounds and is 6.1 inches tall and measures 19.2 inches from his nose to the tip of his tail.

Wednesday, May 20, 2009

Nature's Checks and Balances In Old Age

Have you ever noticed that nature seems to have a system of checks and balances? This seems especially true as we grow older.

I find it difficult to contort my body into the unnatural positions needed to shave my legs. However, since my eyesight isn't what it used to be, I rarely notice.

My hearing isn't as sharp as it used to be. Good thing. I'm less embarrassed by the odd sounds emitted from my body.

I can't walk as far as I once did. Doesn't matter. I've seen it all anyway.

We lose friends and family and no longer need the time spent with them. This gives us time to concentrate on our own frailties.

I finally recognise and accept my character flaws. But it's okay. I can blame them on old age.

Tuesday, May 12, 2009

Surviving the Great Depression Per Ron Gibbs

When I knew Ron Gibbs, we were both working for Scantom's in Rochester. Scrantom's was an old established business in Rochester. Ron was working there during the Great Depression. Both Ron and Mr. Brauer, the owner, liked to tell that Scrantom's survived the depression by Ron's ability to repair fountain pens.

Unfortunately, Scrantom's could not survive Office Depot and Staples.

Early Basketball: Another Ron Gibbs Story

Ron Gibbs, a co-worker and friend, was born around the turn of the last century. He grew up in Andover, a community near the one where I grew up. He played on one of the first basketball teams in the area. They used an actual basket like the one pictured on the right. When they went to an away game, the players rode in the back of a delivery truck, probably like the one pictured above. Because basketball was a winter game, Ron said they used a little coal heater in the truck to keep warm.

Can you envision Michael Jordan in those conditions?

A Ron Gibbs Story

Many years ago, I worked with a great gentleman named Ron Gibbs. Ron was a country boy who had taken a job in the "big city" of Rochester, NY sometime in the 1920s. He got a job downtown and took the trolley to work. The first morning as they approached the street where he needed to get off, the conductor called out "Gibbs". Ron said that he was both amazed and impressed that the conductor knew his name and where he was to get out. It was only a few days later that he realized that the street was named Gibbs.

Saturday, May 09, 2009

A Little Ogden Nash

It's time for some Ogden Nash and I've tried to select something that is timely.

The Wasp

by Ogden Nash

The wasp and all his numerous family

I look upon as a major calamity.

He throws open his nest with prodigality,

But I distrust his waspitality.

Thursday, May 07, 2009

Slaughterhouse 0, Cow 1

Animal lovers everywhere are rejoicing over the news of a cow that escaped a slaughterhouse in New York City. It ran through through city streets, chased by mounted police who finally captured it. However, the cow clearly won because it was turned over to an animal care agency instead of going back to the slaughterhouse. Yay!
Maybe this is the beginning of a revolution by animals. They will refuse to go to be slaughtered and we will all end up as vegetarians.

Humorist Margaret Thatcher

Columnist Cal Thomas tells the story about Margaret Thatcher taking her all male cabinet out to dinner. The waiter asks what she would like to eat and she replies "I'll have the beef."
The waiter says "What about the vegetables?" and she answers "They'll have the same."

Sunday, May 03, 2009

A Love Story

With a family as large as ours, you run into a lot of love and love stories. The love story that has left the greatest impression on me is the story of my youngest uncle, Max and his wife, Elaine. I don't remember when they first married but in my early teens and until their passings, I was very impressed by their love for each other. I always thought they were like a couple of teenagers in love, even into their 50's, 60's, 70's. Unfortunately, due to their poor health, they spent their last days apart, reunited whenever family could bring them together. Uncle Max's last words to Aunt Elaine before her death were "Well, I'll meet you at the pearly gates." He did, exactly a month later.

Saturday, May 02, 2009

Threads of Life

Out of the corner of my eye, I can see a large pile of threads. The threads all vary: some are thick, some are thin, some are colorful, some are dull, some are long, some are short. I sense that each thread is a part of my life and that they need to be woven together. But I hesitate to do anything. Will the tapestry of my life be beautiful or ugly?