Wednesday, November 30, 2005


I had a horrible night. Slept in short segments and had an awful dream.  At least I was walking. I was on a middle eastern tour doing what, I know not, but the United States did something to irritate the Arabs whose country it was, and they interned us all, along with Arab civilians in an Arabian prision.    They insisted on Arabian customs which we Americans did not know nor appreciate. It was miserable sleeping on straw on cement floors. (My bed is uncomfortable, no wonder I dreamed that.) They herded us around, threatening to shoot us at any time. My only escape was to wake up, and leave the others behind. Hope they woke up soon.

Later: Anna, from Pittsburgh, comments below that she would like an Arabian dream, with some great Middle Eastern food, but that I probably didn't have any of that.  I sent her an email saying ...

 Dear Anna,

   You are right, there was no food in my nightmare. Only crowded accomodations, hard floors, and strange customs.  Of course, the customs were not really Arabian customs, only my imaginary ones. In fact, the fact that we were all hered together, men, women, American and Arabian, sleeping in common quarters, seems pretty unlikely. There was lots of intimidation, but no violence, and I am sure that was influenced by news broadcasts I have seen.  The horrible sleeping arrangements were no doubt influenced by my discomfort last night. I wasn't able to snuggle down and enjoy my bed at all for some reason. My tablemate at breakfast, in our old folks home, commented, "My gosh, what did you eat before you went to bed?"

   I don't remember eating anything, but something bothered me.  Diet cola in the evening is NOT a good nightcap.    And I itch this morning.  Maybe it is all an allergy? Chuck

   Another postscript: Even more about dreams to Anna and Firestormkid (whose comment is below also)  Yes, I have had recurring dreams, remembering one dream in a later one  In fact, I have even "harnessed" that phenomenon and willed myself to dream pleasant experiences again.

   Dreams are fascinating, and I feel sorry for people who say that they either do not dream or forget them as soon as they wake.    When I have a pleasant dream I usually write it down as soon as I can, or tell someone, so I can remember it.  I will probalby remember the unpleasant dream I had last night because I wrote about it in my journal. That was not a good idea, for I may dream it again because of that.    And I believe that dreams can tell us about feelings and concerns that we are consciously trying to supress, but they are so weird that we have trouble figuring out what they mean.  As for standard dream interpreation symbots and plots, I have no faith in those.

Tuesday, November 29, 2005

Bye bye CD

I have just read a newspaper column that says CDs are thing of the past.  They will soon be useless as eight track stereos or LP players.  Ipod, MP3 players, satellite radio, and internet radio will take their place.

A bit before my time, music was available on Edison cylinders. Caruso recorded on cylinders and his remarkable voice was preseved for the ages so that future generations, we, could hear him. But Berliner invented flat "records" that spun along at 80 RPM.  But the industry replaced those records with recordings at 78 rpm. 

   Gramophones were replaced my 78s, but at least they were compatible.  Playing an eighty at seventy-eight even made it a bit mellower.  Seventy eights, 10 and 12 inch, lasted a long time, but were replaced 45's.  What an improvement that was. Records went from ten to cute little 7 inch discs.  But they provided just a few minutes of recording per disc.  So...

   Along came LPs, turning at a leisurely 33 and a third rpm.  Nice long works of music, whole concerts, on one disc, now expanded to 12 inches again.  But that didn't last.  Inventors put stereo recordings on the same disk.  At least they were compatible. Your New stereo player could play your stockpile of LPs. LP incidentally stood for Long Play.

   But your tape recorder, with seven inch reels of tape could not play stereo discs.  And your eight track cassettes could not play your tapes. And your cassette recorders could not play your eight track cartridges. And then the cassette recorders could not play your compact disk, the CD.

   And now, soon, the CD will be a Dodo, like cylinders, 80s, 78s, 45s, LPs, Stereos, tapes, cartidges, cassettes.

   Should I get an Ipod, MP3, player or wait for the next inovation? Won't be long, whatever it is.

Flood of DVD Ads

What is with this flood of DVD ads?

Suddenly my email is filled with ads for collections of movies and old television shows on DVD.  Someone must have broken into the vaults of some movie studios, or the files of some defunct "air check" company.

Suddenly all those B-movies are considered worthy of DVD treatment.  B-movies were those low budget productions made to fill the play list in Double Feature movie houses. Shot on public land, or borrowed sets, the rent was cheap.  The talent was too, featuring one fading star on his way down and aspiring young talent just off the list of extras hopefully on their way up.  The shooting schedule was, let's say, parsimonious.  If nobody blew his lines, "That's a take. Next set up."

Television too.  The schedule had to be filled. Something had to be made to appear on the other channels, even when we were all tuned to Lucy. Pity the poor producer who had to film a series or sit-com to run opposite Father Knows Best.  Produce it on a shoe string, sell it to a soap company for sponsorship, run it in an unpopular time slot, store it in a film library, move on to the next project. 

And there they lie, waiting to be discovered by the DVD industry.

But why now, all of a sudden?  Have the copyrights expired, now after fifty years? Did the film libraries burst a seam and the goods spilled out?

Well, I will enjoy this bonanza while it lasts.  I just bought thirty-nine episodes of Sherlock Holmes mysteries, the complete series for $12.99.  I remember I liked that series way back when. The actor who played Sherlock was no Basil Rathbone, but the character of Dr. Watson was sensible and an improvement over the movie versions.  (I'll bet the Basil Rathbone movies will be on DVD too.)

I'll be able to buy movies featuring my own Godfather, Richard Arlen, in his later low-budget years.  I will enjoy those. Fifty movies boxed in a set of 13 DVDs for $22,95.

My problem is time.  When will I find time to watch all these movies. After all, I have the contemporary television to watch, all hundred channels.  I already have DVDs lying about unwatched. I bought some at the 99 cent store.

All this entertainment. And I still like to read.


Thursday, November 24, 2005

Assignment #87 - Musical Questions

Weekend Assignment #87: Answer one or more of the following musical conundrums:

1. Who let the dogs out?
Where Oh Where has my little dog gone?
You'll Never Know
Talk to the Animals
Around the world I searched for you
2. Why do fools fall in love?
Just One of those Things
That old Black Magic
This can't be Love
3. If birds can fly over the rainbow, why then, oh why, can't I?
You're Either too Young or Too Old
Imposible Dream
These Foolish Things
4. Do you hear what I hear?
An Echo in the Valley
There Goes that Song Again
5. How do you solve a problem like Maria?
Put the Blame on Mame
It's Just One of those things
6. How can you have any pudding if you don't eat your meat?
If I Knowed you was comin' I'd baked a Cake
7. Listen, do you want to know a secret? Do you promise not to tell?
I Know that You Know
That's My Desire
8. How long has this been going on?
Forever and a Day
Now is the Hour
June, in January
9. I want to know, have you ever seen the rain?
April Showers
Somewhere Over the Rainbow
10. Does anybody really know what time it is?
Now is the hour
There's No Tomorrow
Time on my Hands
Turn Back the Hands of Time
I'm Bidin' My Time

(Yes, you can have silly answers. In fact, I encourage them!)
Thanks a Million

Tuesday, November 22, 2005

A journal that self corrects... what I need.

I make lots of mistakes in my journal, like the number of teeth in a full adult set...and often in the lead sentence or question.  There are 32 teeth in a full adult set, not 28. The irony is that I was corrected by a reader who was born with eleven fingers. (How many fingers on a full set of two hands? Don't answer that, you may not be speaking to the right person.)

Anyway, journaling is fun, even if you are poor at research.  Because in this J-land there are people who DO know.  Everything.  And it is easy to comment.  And it is fun to get comments. And it is easy to go back to your entries and correct errors.

And, oh, my spelling.  I see a Spell Check option in upper right corner of the tool bar.  At last, hoo-ray.

I like Wikipaedia, an encyclopaedia that you can make additions to. Seems like a good way to keep up to the minute, have people add data to your encyclopaedia with information they have.  And if they make a mistake, no problem, someone will come along and correct that shortly.

Harry Morgan played Pete on Pete and Gladys AFTER he played Joe Gannon on Dragnet, and BEFORE he played Colonel Potter on Mash. (By the way, that is M.A.S.H., not Mash.)

William Boyd played Hopalong Cassidy whose horse was NOT Champion, but Topper. Champion was Gene Autry's horse and Alan Autry (Bubba in The heat of the night) is mayor of Fresno, CA, and if he had a horse, I do not know about it.  These things get straightened out sooner of later. Cosmo Topper was a character in Topper, and did not have a horse.

So when I decided to do an entry on artificial sweeteners, I thought I would call on J-land to gather my data.  Here's what I know about sweeteners:

Artificial sweeteners

Acesulfame potassium (Sunett)

Aspartame (NutraSweet or Equal)

Sucralose (Splenda)

D-Tagatose (Sugaree)

Saccharin (Sweet 'N Low) ,


Are there others? What about Sucrose, Dextrose, and Fructose? Are they sweeteners too, and are they artificial? Waiting to hear from you, my experts.


ALL of society depends on the food producers, the farmers, the fishermen, the hunters to provide more food than they can eat.

The whole system is like a huge upside down pyramid, balanced on the tip, the farmer and the fisherman.  Compare the number of people eating with the number producing the basic food and you see the enormous number of people each producer supports. 

There would be no religion, no drama, no music, no television, no cars, no government, no armies, no teachers, no ANYBODY without the farmer, fisherman. What if every day we had to go raise or harvest our own food for the day.  There would be no time for anything else.

Who is the most important person to society? The president, the head of state, the Pope, the spiritual leaders, Arnold Swartzenegger? They don't give us a bite to eat. Yet, they run things.

The real rulers of the world ought to be the guys in the hip boots and the bib overalls. They have us all where it hurts, the throat. If they shut off the food, we must beg them to help us.

Bill Gates the richest man in the country?  What does he do for me? He controls the companies that control the companies that make and run my computer. Thanks, Bill, but at supper time, I shut off the computer and go to the dining room, and, what do I do? Write a journal? NO.  I EAT. Real food. Fruit, grain, meat, fish. Not from Bill Gates, but from Mike Yurosek, who plants carrots enough for everyone who likes those yuccky things, and Chuck Gronish, almond grower.

Never heard of Mike Yurosek or Chuck Gronish? Of all he people I know, of all the people I have known in this lifetime, they are the only farmers I can think of that I have known.  That's upside down, isn't it?

Personal note: I just remembered. Mark, down the hall, is a retired farmer. I must go and thank him. He will wonder what for.  

Monday, November 21, 2005

Five, Six, and Seven

Not playing the game. Here are the questions from Robins Five, Saturday Six, Sunday Seven. And I am cheating. I am using the questions but I am not posting a link in their journals. It is just because I am "caching up". I like the games and I like the relationships that "linking" brings. Next time, I will.

Sunday Seven
Name the top seven stores where you are most likely to do the majority of your Christmas shopping this year. If you can't name seven, name as many up to seven as you can. You can also include online retailers, too
My answers:

Wal-Mart. -- I have been urged to boycott Wal-Mart because of their unfair labor practices. I am pro-labor, and yet, they have so much merchandise, and it is convenient.

Long;s Drug store. -- Talk about convenience, it is scooterable. I can cruise up and down aisles and they are packed with great gifts.

Target -- I am always in awe at Target. They have things that I didn't even know were invented yet.

Barnes and Noble -- Books are easy gifts, and shopping there is like a trip to the library. You spend more time browsing than buying, and you buy more stuff for yourself than you do for gifts.

OSH hardware -- For Christmas lights and tools.

Staples -- If I owned a store, I would want it to be a stationery store. They fascinate me and fill me with ideas of projects I could create. Staples is closer than Office Max.

Robin's Friday Five !
What is the one thing on your Thanksgiving table that you will NOT eat? Anything on the table is okay with me, though I prefer some things to others. I'd rather have pumpkin pie than the traditional pecan. At the old folks home, turkey is a stapleƂ¦ we have a lot of it on ordinary days, so when feast days come, turkey looks pretty tired and If ham or beef is available I will choose that instead.

Did you ever play in a pile of leaves as a kid? Yes, sure did. Would rather play in them than rake them

When you think of Fall what are the three things that come to mind? Back to school, Halloween, Thanksgiving.

When was the last time you had pumpkin pie? Was it last year or have you already had some this year? Have it regularly, and this year we had pumpkin cheesecake, with chocolate crust. Wow

Tell us something really nice about the last person you read an email from.. Just had a nice email from Michael, the "madman with ADD, Adult Attention Deficit Disorder." He writes so clearly and succinctly, you cannot believe it is a struggle for him to concentrate. What is so great is that he has learned to cope with the distractions, forces himself to focus, is earning a PhD and is a professor. He takes time to write a journal, study himself and his disorder, and yet had time to write to me. I am impressed.

Saturday Six - Episode 84
What was the last movie you watched at a theater completely alone? Would you have enjoyed it more or less if you had gone with someone to see it? It was Wallace and Grommet in the Great Wererwolf Hunt. I would rather have had someone with me to enjoy the jokes and the clever satire.

What was the last non-sexual thing you did around the house completely naked? Took a nap sprawled on top of bed, then showered, and still bare, went to computer and played games, wrote in my journal and read others. Finally had to dress to go to supper.

How well do you know your neighbors? Would you like to know them better or not know them? Living in old folks home, I have lots of neighbors and know them all well. Sometimes we are too close.

Take the conspiracy quiz: How much of a conspiracy nut are you? Took the quiz and it said I trusted everybody and believed everything people tell me..

Of the "conspiracies" mentioned in that quiz, which single one would you most like the "truth" about and why? Since I don't believe there are any big conspiracies, I don't need to delve into any.

If you had to create a slogan that defined your life, what would it be? "The Creative Person is pretty sloppy: Ever see an artist's palette?" Trouble is, that slogan wouldn't help me organize my life, but would only encourage me to further disorder.

How Many


(Drag your cursor over the answers to see which is correct)


Teeth in a full adult set

24, 28, 32, 36 28


Red stripes on the American flag

5, 7, 13, 50 7


Stars on the American Flag

13, 48, 50, 52 50


Inches in a yard

12, 36, 100, 144 36


Pints in a gallon

2, 8, 16, 32 8


Feet in a mile

1,760, 5,290, 10,000, 1,000,000 5,280


Feet in a fathom

6, 16, 60, 66   6


Miles per hour is Mach 1

100, 570, 1,000, 186,000 570


Furlongs in a mile

2, 6, 8, 12 8


Yards in a furlong

6, 100, 220, 1500 220


Miles around the equator is Earth

1,000, 25,000, 100,000, 1,000,000 25,000


Years in a s score

10, 20, 200, 1000 20


Years in a century

10, 20, 100, 1000 100


Years in a millennium

10, 20, 100, 1000 1000


Years is "four score and seven"

40, 80, 87, 167 87


Sheets of paper in a ream

10, 24, 200, 500 500


Stencils in a quire

10, 24, 200, 500 24


Buns in a Baker's Dozen

12, 13, 15, 50 13


Three cent stamps in a dozen

3, 4, 12, 36 12


Pennies in a roll

25, 40, 50, 100 50


Miles does light travel in a second

560, 186,000, 1,000,000, More than a million 186,000


Miles away is the moon

Less than a million. one million. more than one million. one light year LESS THAN


Miles away is the sun

Less than a million. one million. more than one million. one light year MORE THAN


Keys on a piano

64, 88, 126, none of the above 88


Notes in an octave

3, 8, 12, 88 8


Rows of kernels on an ear of corn most nearly

7 13 25 57 13


Seconds in five minutes

60 300 1244 7640 300


Years old was Methusela

Four score and seven, three score and ten, 100, 969 969


Toes has a horse

None 1 4 40  4  ONE ON EACH FOOT


Sunday, November 20, 2005

One of a Kind

Going through the holiday food ads, and using our Handy-Dandy Pocket Calculators, we can find the price of ONE of the items that come packaged in boxes or packs. Since we so rarely buy  just one, we may forget what one most nearly costs. Here are a few from the specials found in my junk mail.  Slide your cursor over the answer to reveal it.

One Kellogs  strawberry pop tart from a package 
One Pound of Maxwell House coffee in 3 pound can  $

One Holiday paper plate
10 cents
One Thomas English muffin 
One candy cane
One 8 ounce serving of Pepsi in 2 liter bottle
One Hershey chocolate kiss 
One Duracell AA battery (at Albertsons)
One Rayovac AA battery (at Big Lots) 
One shot (2 oz) of Seagram Seven 
One glass (6 oz) of Coke
One Hi-ball, coke and Seagram Seven, is,
Order on from a bar and you pay
Cents, I don't remember.
One color print from your film, when you buy fifty,
One exposure on Fuji Quicksnap camera
Making each picture
To celebrate, one glass champagne, (6 oz),
(That must be the "good stuff")

Monday, November 14, 2005

My Most Wonderful Monday

Monday BLAHS? No, way. This is the start of a new week and that should be the promise of good things to come.

What's the very BEST thing that could happen to you today?

If you'd care to comment below, I will copy it and post it in this entry. There'll be no Monday BLAHS here. Life could be more fun this week. It might take less than you think to make you happier.

CHUCK: That's me, and I didn't know what my answer would be when I chose the topic for this entry. I will join the fun and think happy thoughts right along with you.

Win the lottery? That would be nice, but I have enough money for my room and board. World peace break out. Well, sure, but that's a dream for everybody. What would please me the most? Maybe the next resident to move into the old folks home will be a gorgeous widow my age.

I guess if I decided to stand up and walk, and found that it didn't hurt will be my choice. I love my scooter, and even went to Starbucks on it yesterday. But when I moved into the old folks home, I was walking, and that was nice and I felt independent. That would be one wonderful thing that could happen.

DEB:  Its snowing here on a monday  :)

BECKY:  A major pharmaceutical company announces FDA approval of their new weight loss pill. It helps the body burn fat faster.  Yeah. That would be GREAT.

MARY: My husband who is currently working out of town to surprise me.. a thoughtful gift.. flowers.. meaningful words, a card or even a quick visit home, something.. ANYTHING.  That would make this the best week.

KAREN:  Well, a semi-wonderful thing did happen.  I came home at lunch, and the roofers were here.  Turns out they weren't going to leave our roof unfinished after all! (We thought they forgot us.)

JACKIE: 'Doorbell ringing'   I answer and there is a crowd of people and someone handing me one of those HUGE checks (along with a real one) from Publishers Clearing House with a considerable amount of money writtien on it!  Look out world, here I come!!  

BAMBI:  To wake up and not have to take meds for my arrhythmia problem ever again would be on my list

JOYCE:  What is the best thing that can happen for a UCLA Bruin football fan?  A Fresno State Bulldog win against USC on Saturday, November 19th!  We've done it before!

What about you?

Sunday, November 13, 2005

"Saturday Six"

It is Sunday, so here is the Saturday Six.

1. You are invited to spend a night, alone, in a large house that is believed to be haunted.  A close friend of yours whom you trust tells you of his or her own experience, and you have sufficient reason to believe that there may be a genuine haunting going on there.  Without promise of any kind of reward for staying the night, would you agree to do so?

No way, man. I am not superstitious, but I am "chicken". I do not wish to confront "gettythings" of any origin.

2. What do you most enjoy about your job?

I am long retired, but what I liked best about my job was experimenting and finding the best way to teach something in a new way to pupils who lost the abiltiy to learn the usual way.

3. Who was the last person you had a conversation with?  What was the main topic of the conversation?

Wilma, my tablemate at the old folks home. After we settled the matter of what day it was, Sunday, we talked about travel, and Wilma, in her wheelchair wanted to go to Italy, home of her ancestors.

I told her bluntly that she was "too old" and she'd better settle for San Francisco.  She said "okay" and wanted to know when we were going.

4. Take this
quiz:   What kind of "smart" are you?

Without taking the quiz I'd say I am "imaginative smart". I like looking to see if there are solutions "outside the box". Anything NEW catches my attention. For instance, I am considering buying a "roll up piano" just because I have never seen one, not because I can play one. ("Carry 16 instruments in your backpack and play them anywhere anytime." $49.99 at

(sorry, the link apparently doesn't work... perhaps you can type it in.)

5. What was the last food that you totally ruined -- to the point that it was inedible -- when trying to cook?

As part of the committee to Save San Fernando Airport, we each took a couple of shoulder clod roasts home to par-boil before the benefit barbecue. It took hours, and when it was nicely done, I put it in a plastic picnic container to take to the barbecue. Somehow, I don't know why yet, the plastic container spoiled the meat and both had to be thrown away. I wasn't the only goof-ball, and when people who bought tickets to the "barbecue and cole slaw feast", were served boiled beef and sliced cabbage, they were upset.

6. STRANGELY-OBSCURE QUESTION #1:  If you had to do over again, would you change anything?

A lot of things: knowing what I know now, I would still be happily married, nearing my sixtieth wedding anniversary. My fault, my dear, but that is water under the bridge.

Thursday, November 10, 2005

Pie? Oh, my.

    I, who often says, "No dessert, thank you," had TWO pieces of pie for dessert last night. One was cherry and the other was apple. And the part I liked best was the little crimped end of the crust. Clella, my tablemate, left the little crimped end on the plate, like so many folks do.

    "Oh, Clella," I said, "You're leaving the best part on the plate. That crust is especially delicious tonight."  Clella smiled and said something but did not eat the crust.  Clella is old and frail, and I usually do not understand what she says, but she smiled and was agreeable, so she was not offended by my advice on what to eat. So I smiled in return and nodded in agreement.

    I did not offer to finish the crust on her plate. It was tasty, but two were enough.

    I do not know why I am a "skip the dessert cart" person ordinarily, nor why I was not last evening. I am old, and I have the right to change my mind.

    In the mornings we have a "choice of juice" on the breakfast menu, but, in fact, the choice is made for us by the waiter who fills our glass before we come in with what we had the last time he served us.

    My this is drivel.  I have become what I hate, gushy.

   Erase this entry.

Wednesday, November 9, 2005

My Spokesman, Captain Kirk

Last night, on Boston Legal, William Shatner, playing Denny Crain, an egocentric excentric who got himself into trouble, and then out of it, all in the same episode, said something that expressed my own situation. Earlier yesterday I had substituted as chairman of the resident's committee at the old folks home.

I ran the meeting, not with an iron hand, but with a closed mouth. I let the spouters and the ranters entangle themselves in parlimentry fol-de-rol and sat silently. When they had spewed themselves dry it was quiet.  They looked at me and said, "Well, what are you waitin for?"

I said, "Waiting for a motion."  Nobody said anything, so I said, "Meeting adjourned."  I rolled out.  There was a stunned silence, then they exploded. Now everyone talked, and all at once.

"Nothing happened", "We didn't DO anything", "The reason I voted ....".  I said, "Don't tell me, the meeting is over."

I am in the doghouse with the residents, and I think it is hilarious.  I hid out in my room for the rest of the day. I got more interest in our committee in fifteen minutes than they have shown in five months. And all by being quiet when they expected bluster and words.

William Shatner, speaking as Denny Crain, said, "It's fun being me."

Monday, November 7, 2005

Lucky Ten Thousandth Visitor

Someone reading this entry is going to be my ten thousandth visitor.

Just take a look at the that counter over there in the left hand column. It may be YOU. Alas there is no prize, but you will earn my undying gratitude. I would never have believed it possible. Ten thousand readers, imagine.

Well, there are a few mitigating facts.  It counts everytime I check in to read your comments, and it counts each time I make corrections on my entry, and I do a lot of that..

If you are number ten thousand, I hope you will leave your name in the comments.  I'd like to say thanks in an email.

I have made a lot of friends online and I love you all. All I can say is


PS. Number 10000 read the journal at 11 pm EST, and did not leave a comment.  Thank you, everyone...chuck

Before and After - Monday Photo Shoot

For our Monday Photo John Scalzi asks for before and after photos.

Here's a pair with sixty three years intervening. 


Me with mother, my age 16          Me alone age 79

Here's another pair, Before and after installation of flat monitor. Repeat from a couple of months ago.

                  Before                                                    After

                          Makes blogging easier.

Stolen Limerick

They asked us to post a note saying what we are thankful for. So I stole a limerick by Gillette Burgess. Surely the copyright has expired by now, it is over a hundred years old. I tweaked it bit too.

I'm thankful for fingers and toes.

I'm thankful for ears and a nose.

As for my hair

I'm glad it's all there

I'll be awfully sad when it goes.

Friday, November 4, 2005

Weekend assignment

John Scalzi has posted a picture in his journal, By The Way, and asked us to explain it in our journals.

It is easy, John, you keep going to those Science Fiction seminars, and sooner or later, someone will follow you home.

Frustration - so what else is new?

I spent an hour on an entry to the journal. Then I minimized it while I looked up an address to link. But I could never find it again. Some people never learn to "save" while they are working.  Why is that?

I decided NOT to recreate it. It was about the word oeuvre. Wauldn't that have been nice?

Thursday, November 3, 2005

See the USA and other Acronyms

Oh, how we love our acronyms here in the USA. >United States of America<. We’d love to see the USA >see above< in our Chevrolet and let our GPS >Global Positioning System< estimate our ETA .>estimated time of arrival< for us. The AAA >American Automobile Association< will supply the maps.

I learned my first acronyms with FDR >Franklin Delano Roosevelt< and his “new deal” when he created the NRA >National Recovery Act< and gave it the slogan “we serve” long before WWII >World War Two<.

I’ll bet you know a lot yourselves. Drag your cursor over the acronym to see what it represents.


GM cars and trucks GENERAL MOTORS

GM food stuffs GENERAL MILLS

GM on teletype or in email GOOD MORNING

CHP will give you a ticket for speeding in my state, but yours would be different CALIFONIA HIGHWAY PATROL


USS precedes the names of vessels UNITED STATES STEAMSHIP

USS makes the stuff they are made of UNITED STATES STEEL

USCG tells them where to go UNITED STATES COAST GUARD

SOS sometimes means SAVE OUR SHIP


UN monitors the results UNITED NATIONS

FDA checks purity of edibles FOOD AND DRUG ADMINISTRATION



MSRP is what you could pay for your new car MANUFACTORERS SUGGESTED RETAIL PRICE.



Wednesday, November 2, 2005

One single flower

I looked out my window in the morning and I could see, one, count 'em, one, lone flower. Brave blossom, thanks for being there.

That was worth a pre-breakfast scoot to view from the other direction, looking toward the window. No easy task for the scooter over the wet grass.

         Looking out                               Looking In

Tuesday, November 1, 2005

Three Thoughts for November First

First thought: Was thinking about journal.  I have about twenty-five readers a day. If I compare my journal with a newpaper 'column', that is not much.  If I compare my journal with a multiple-copy newsletter, that is so-so. If I compare my journal with a letter to pen-pals, that is a lot. If I consider the journal as a personal note pad on which I store my thoughts, that is enormous. Just what is my journal?    

Second thought: I have always been puzzled about party games for children. What kind of game could you play where there is no loser or no "you're out". What kind of a game could I devise where everyone wins? Can you, in fact, have "winners" without "losers". What game relies on cooperation instead of competion? What would vollyball be like if the goal were not to spike the ball onto he other's playing field, but instead to see how long the ball could be kept in the air? I will continue to ponder.

   Third thought: Today is all saints day. Can we add to the pantheon of saints, Saint Wizard, who kept a ball in play in pinball so long it was considered a miracle. He went off the top of the pinball scale with sixty gazillion points, while getting only 100 points per bounce on the bumpers. Or what about St. Wapnicl, the mnemonic genius who remembered all the Presidents in order, with their birtdays, wives names, vice-presidents, and their dogs and cats. If that wasn't a miracle, is was next thing to it. And remember the triplet saints Leandro, Jose, and Francisco who, wth their big golden bear, Babe, dug a miles-long hole in the earth near the Pacific Ocean and filled it with sea water using only a huge sponge named Al Catraz.