Friday, April 29, 2016

I Remember . . . When I Was a Kid

I remember the bologna of my childhood, 
And the bread that we cut with a knife, 
When the children helped with the housework, 
And the men went to work not the wife. 
  
The cheese never needed a fridge, 
And the bread was so crusty and hot, 
The children were seldom unhappy 
And the wife was content with her lot. 
  
I remember the milk from the bottle, 
With the yummy cream on the top, 
Our dinner came hot from the oven, 
And not from a freezer; or shop. 
  
The kids were a lot more contented, 
They didn't need money for kicks, 
Just a game with their friends in the road, 
And sometimes the Saturday flicks. 
  
I remember the shop on the corner, 
Where cookies for pennies were sold 
Do you think I'm a bit too nostalgic? 
Or is it....I'm just getting old? 
   
Bathing was done in a wash tub, 
With plenty of rich foamy suds 
But the ironing seemed never ending 
As Mama pressed everyone's 'duds'. 
  
I remember the slap on my backside, 
And the taste of soap if I swore 
Anorexia and diets weren't heard of 
And we hadn't much choice what we wore. 
  
Do you think that bruised our ego? 
Or our initiative was destroyed? 
We ate what was put on the table 
And I think life was better enjoyed. 
  
Author Unknown  
 
If you can remember those days, continue to enjoy your retirement. 

Political Truisms!

If God wanted us to vote, he would have given us candidates.  ~Jay Leno~

The problem with political jokes is they get elected.  ~Henry Cate, VII~

We hang the petty thieves and appoint the great ones to public office  ~Aesop~

Politicians are the same all over. They promise to build a bridge even where there is no river.  ~Nikita Khrushchev~

When I was a boy I was told that anybody could become President; I'm beginning to believe it.  ~Clarence Darrow~

Why pay money to have your family tree traced; go into politics and your opponents will do it for you.~Author unknown~

Politicians are people who, when they see light at the end of the tunnel, go out and buy some more tunnel.~John Quinton~
 
Politics is the gentle art of getting votes from the poor and campaign funds from the rich, by promising to protect each from the other.  Oscar Ameringer~

I offer my opponents a bargain: if they will stop telling lies about us, I will stop telling the truth about them.~Adlai Stevenson, campaign speech, 1952~

A politician is a fellow who will lay down your life for his country.  ~ Tex Guinan~

I have come to the conclusion that politics is too serious a matter to be left to the politicians.  ~Charles de Gaulle~

Last Ride


I arrived at the address and honked the horn. After waiting a few minutes I honked again. Since this was going to be my last ride of my shift, I thought about just driving away, but instead I put the car in park and walked up to the door and knocked.

Just a minute', answered a frail, elderly voice.

I could hear something being dragged across the floor. 

After a long pause, the door opened. A small woman in her 90's stood before me. She was wearing a print dress and a pillbox hat with a veil pinned on it, like somebody out of a 1940's movie.

By her side was a small nylon suitcase. The apartment looked as if no one had lived in it for years. All the furniture was covered with sheets.

There were no clocks on the walls, no knickknacks or utensils on the counters. In the corner was a cardboard box filled with photos and glassware.

Would you carry my bag out to the car?' she asked.

I took the suitcase to the cab, then returned to assist the woman. She took my arm and we walked slowly toward the curb.
She kept thanking me for my kindness. 'It's nothing', I told her.. 'I just try to treat my passengers the way I would want my mother to be treated.'

'Oh, you're such a good boy, she said. When we got in the cab, she gave me an address and then asked, 'Could you drive through downtown?'

'It's not the shortest way,' I answered quickly.

'Oh, I don't mind,' she said. 'I'm in no hurry. I'm on my way to a hospice.

I looked in the rear-view mirror. Her eyes were glistening.

'I don't have any family left,' she continued in a soft voice. 'The doctor says I don't have very long.' I quietly reached over and shut off the meter.

What route would you like me to take?' I asked.

For the next two hours, we drove through the city. She showed me the building where she had once worked as an elevator operator.

We drove through the neighborhood where she and her husband had lived when they were newlyweds. She had me pull up in front of a furniture warehouse that had once been a ballroom where she had gone dancing as a girl.

Sometimes she'd ask me to slow in front of a particular building or corner and she would sit, staring into the darkness, saying nothing.

As the first hint of sun was creasing the horizon, she suddenly said, 'I'm tired. Let's go now'.

We drove in silence to the address she had given me. It was a low building, like a small convalescent home, with a driveway that passed under a portico.

Two orderlies came out to the cab as soon as we pulled up. They were solicitous and intent, watching her every move. They must have been expecting her. I opened the trunk and took the small suitcase to the door. The woman was already seated in a wheelchair.

'How much do I owe you?' She asked, reaching into her purse.

'Nothing,' I said.

'You have to make a living,' she answered.

There are other passengers,' I responded.

Almost without thinking, I bent and gave her a hug. She held onto me tightly.

'You gave an old woman a little moment of joy,' she said. 'Thank you.'

I squeezed her hand, and then walked into the dim morning light.. Behind me, a door shut. It was the sound of the closing of a life.

I didn't pick up any more passengers that shift. I drove aimlessly, lost in thought. For the rest of that day, I could hardly talk.
What if that woman had gotten an angry driver, or one who was impatient to end his shift? What if I had refused to take the run, or had honked once, then driven away?

On a quick review, I don't think that I have done anything more important in my life.

We are conditioned to think that our lives revolve around great moments.

But great moments often catch us unaware-beautifully wrapped in what others may consider a small one.
PEOPLE MAY NOT REMEMBER EXACTLY WHAT YOU DID, OR WHAT YOU SAID ~BUT~THEY WILL ALWAYS REMEMBER HOW YOU MADE THEM FEEL.

At the bottom of this great story was a request to forward this - I deleted that request because if you have read to this point, you won't have to be asked to pass it along, you just will...

Thank you, my friend...
Life may not be the party we hoped for, but while we are here we might as well dance.

Mass Transportation - Or Why Make A Second Trip?



















Fun Facts About Laura Ingalls Wilder

Forty-one years ago today, the first episode of "Little House on the Prairie” aired on NBC, introducing television viewers to the Ingalls family and their neighbors in Walnut Grove, Minnesota. In honor of this beloved classic television show, here are five facts about the woman whose autobiographical books inspired the series.
CATHERINE MCHUGH SEP 10, 2015

http://www.biography.com/news/laura-ingalls-wilder-biography-facts

 Laura Ingalls Wilder's "Little House" books helped shape the popular idea of the American frontier. 
(Photo: Public domain via Wikimedia Commons)



Well before fans began tuning in for their weekly fix of Ma, Pa, Mary, Half-Pint, Carrie and their Walnut Grove neighbors (Nellie Oleson, give us a smirk!), the books on which the series was based had made Laura Ingalls Wilder one of the most influential children’s authors in American history. Her lively retelling of experiences from her childhood in the world-famous historical fiction series helped shape the popular idea of the American frontier. 
In 1932, at the age of 65, Wilder published the first of her eight Little Housebooks, Little House in the Big Woods. It told the story of her early childhood years in Wisconsin and was a huge hit with readers. Wilder was 76 years old when she finished the final book in her "Little House" series. Yet without the help of her daughter, Rose Wilder Lane, the series may never have reached a wide audience. 

“Chick Lit” Pioneer

Although her Little House books are now considered classics, Wilder’s literary career has its roots in a chicken coop. Having married Almanzo “Manly” Wilder in 1885, she used the byline Mrs. A. J. Wilder for her first paid writing job in 1910—which was as the poultry columnist for the St. Louis Star Farmer. In her 40s at the time, she drew on her considerable expertise in raising Leghorn hens. Meanwhile, she was also serving as secretary-treasurer of the Mansfield Farm Loan Association. She used these connections and her own farming experience to begin writing columns for the Missouri Ruralist and, later, McCall's Magazine and The Country Gentleman. At this time, she began using the androgynous pseudonym A. J. Wilder to give her work more credibility among male readers. 
 Laura Ingalls Wilder and her husband Almanzo in 1885.


What’s in a Nickname? 

 “(Pa) would come in from his tramp to his traps, with (icicles) on the ends of his whiskers, hang his gun over the door, throw off his coat and cap and mittens and call “Where’s my little half pint of cider half drank up?” That was me because I was so small.”
 Laura Ingalls (right) and her sisters Carrie (left) and Mary (middle). 


This footnote explains that when Wilder introduced her nickname in Chapter 2 of Little House in the Big Woods, it had become “little half-pint of sweet cider half drunk up.” Even when she was fully grown, Laura was only 4 feet 11 inches tall; however, that was not considered exceptionally short for women of that time. 

A Pioneer Girl First



Pioneer Girl: The Annotated Autobiography, published by the South Dakota Historical Society Press.
Pioneer Girl: The Annotated Autobiography, published by the South Dakota Historical Society Press.
Wilder's first attempt at writing an autobiography, called Pioneer Girl, was uniformly rejected by publishers. Undeterred, she spent the next several years working on her memoirs, asking relatives for their accounts of what happened during her childhood years and changing the story to the third-person perspective. (On December 30, 2014, the South Dakota Historical Society Press published Wilder’s complete first draft of her own story—all 472 pages—as Pioneer Girl: The Annotated Autobiography.)

A Daughter Blooms Into a Writing Partner

Laura gave birth to her daughter Rose in 1884 in the Dakota Territory. Due to illnesses and crop failures, Rose’s childhood was defined by a series of moves and she would go on to travel extensively for most of her life. In 1909, Rose moved to San Francisco where she worked as a writer/reporter for the San Francisco Call. She married Gillette Lane in 1909 and became Rose Wilder Lane; the marriage ended in divorce in 1918. 
 Rose Wilder Lane. 
(Photo: Original uploader was Natkingcole at English Wikipedia. 
Later versions uploaded by DickClarkMises at en.wikipedia. 
[Public domain], via Wikimedia Commons)



By the 1920s, Lane had established many connections in the publishing world and was well known as a ghostwriter. Lane's exact role in her mother's famous series of books has remained unclear, but she certainly encouraged Ingalls. She also recognized that an American public weary of the Depression would respond warmly to the story of the loving, self-sufficient and determined Ingalls family overcoming obstacles while maintaining their sense of independence, as told through the eyes of the spunky Laura as she matured from ages five to 18.

Ongoing correspondence between the women concerning the development of the multi-volume series supports a mutual collaboration that involved Lane more extensively in the earlier books, and to a much lesser extent by the time the series ended. Little House in the Big Woods kicked off the series in 1932 and Farmer Boy, an account of Manly's childhood in New York state, followed in 1933. Two years later, Little House on the Prairie appeared on the shelves. Five more books followed that took the reader through Wilder's courtship and marriage to Manly: On the Banks of Plum Creek (1937), By the Shores of Silver Lake (1939), The Long Winter(1940), Little Town on the Prairie (1941), and These Happy Golden Years(1943). 
After her mother's death in 1957, Rose did edit and publish several posthumous works (including the last of the series, The First Four Years, about the beginning of Laura’s marriage to Almanzo, which she based on her mother's diary).



 The original cover of Little House on the Prairie. 
(Photo: Laura Ingalls Wilder (scan from the Internet) [Public domain], via Wikimedia Commons)


Where the Wilder Things Are

In 1894, the Wilder family (Laura, Almanzo and Rose) moved to Missouri to what Laura dubbed Rocky Ridge Farm. This is where they finally settled down and where Laura wrote her books. Now the Laura Ingalls Wilder Home & Historic Museum in Mansfield, Missouri, the site claims to have the most comprehensive collection of Ingalls/Wilder memorabilia. It also hosts an annual celebration to commemorate its favorite and most famous resident. This year’s event, set for September 19, 2015, will feature the second Annual Fiddle Contest as well as complete tours of the home—the upstairs of the historic house on the grounds of Rocky Ridge Farm will be open this day only. 
Rocky Ridge Farm in Mansfield, Missouri, where Wilder wrote her books, 
(Photo: TimothyMN [CC BY-SA 3.0], via Wikimedia Commons)

Facts About The US

Interesting Facts About the United States
 
The following are some facts about America that most Americans would be shocked to learn (Maybe more than you can assimilate in one evening!)  

  #1  In more than half of all states in the United States of America, the highest paid public employee in 
the state is a football coach
 
  #2  It costs the U.S. Government 1.8 cents to mint a penny & 9.4 cents to mint a nickel.  
 
  #3  Almost half of all Americans ( 47 percent) do not put a single penny out of their paychecks into savings.   
 
  #4  Apple has more money than the U.S. Treasury.   
 
  #5  The state of Alaska is 429 times larger than the state of Rhode Island.  But Rhode Island has a significantly larger population than Alaska does.   
 
  #6  Alaska has a longer coastline than all of the other 49 U.S. States put together  
 
  #7  The city of Juneau, Alaska , is about 3,000 square miles in size.  It is actually larger than the entire state of Delaware .   
 
  #8  When LBJs War on Poverty began, less than 10 percent of all U.S. Children were growing up in single parent households.  Today, that number has skyrocketed to 33 percent .   
 
  #9  In 1950, less than 5 percent  of all babies in America were born to unmarried parents.  Today, that number is over 40 percent .   
 
#10  The poverty rate for households that are led by a married couple is 6.8 percent.  For households that are led by a female single parent, the poverty rate is 37.1 percent
  
#11  In 2013, women earned 60 percent of all bachelors degrees that were awarded that year in the United States .   
 
#12  According to the CDC, 34.6 percent of all men in the U.S. are obese at this point. 
 
#13  The average supermarket in the United States wastes about 3,000 lbs of food each year.  Meanwhile, approximately 20 percent of the garbage that goes into our landfills is food.   
 
#14  According to one recent survey, 81 percent of Russians now have a negative view of the United States.  That is much higher than at the end of the Cold War era. 
 
#15  Montana has three times as many cows as it does people. 
 
#16  The grizzly bear is the official state animal of California.  But no grizzly bears have been seen there since 1922
 
#17  One recent survey discovered that a steady job is the number one thing that American women are looking for in a husband, & discovered that 75 percent of women would have a serious problem dating an unemployed man. 
 
#18  According to a study conducted by economist Carl Benedikt Frey & engineer Michael Osborne, 47 percent of the jobs in the United States could soon be lost to computers, robots and other forms of technology. 
 
#19  The only place in the United States where coffee is grown commercially is in Hawaii.   
 
#20  The original name of the city of Atlanta was Terminus.  
 
#21  The state with the most millionaires per capita is Maryland.   
 
#22  One survey of 50-year-old men in the U.S. Found that only 12 percent of them said that they were very happy.   
 
#23  The United States has 845 motor vehicles for every 1,000 people.    
 
#25  48 percent of all Americans do not have any emergency supplies in their homes whatsoever.
 
#26  There are three towns in the United States that have the name Santa Claus  
 
#27  There is actually a town in Michigan called Hell.   
 
#28  If you have no debt & also have 10 dollars in your wallet that you are wealthier than 25 percent of all Americans.   
 
#29  By the time an American child reaches the age of 18, that child will have seen approximately 40,000 murders  on television.   
 
# # # 
 
"I really think it's time to remove the warning labels off of everything and let stupidity work itself out of the gene pool."Bugs Bunny

You Might Be An EXTREME Redneck If...

Some good old Redneck humor!

 

1) You let your 14-year-old daughter smoke at the dinner table infront of her kids. 
 
2) The Blue Book value of your truck goes up and down depending on how much gas is in it.        

3) You've been married three times and still have the same in-laws.        

4) You think a woman who is out of your league, bowls on a different night.
 
5) You wonder how service stations keep their rest-rooms so clean.   

6) Someone in your family died right after saying, 'Hey, guys, watch this.'   
 

7) You think Dom Perignon is a Mafia leader.   
 

8) Your wife's hairdo was once ruined by a ceiling fan.   

 9) Your junior prom offered day care.   

10) You think the last words of the Star-Spangled Banner are 'Gentlemen, start your engines.'   

11) You lit a match in the bathroom and your house exploded right off its wheels. 


12) The Halloween pumpkin on your porch has more teeth than your spouse.  

13) You have to go outside to get something from the fridge.   

14) One of your kids was born on a pool table.   

15) You need one more hole punched in your card to get a freebie at the House of Tattoos.   

16) You can't get married to your sweetheart because there's a law against it.   

17) You think loading the dishwasher means getting your wife drunk.   

18) You had someone come over with their tractor to mow your yard and they discovered 3 lost cars. One in the front yard and two in the back.

19)  You had a family reunion and discovered that among everyone attending, there was only one full set of teeth.

And in closing....Two good ol' boys in an Alabama trailer park were sitting around talking one afternoon over a cold beer after getting off work at the local Nissan plant. After a while the 1st guy says to the 2nd,
"If'n I was to sneak over to your trailer Saturday & make love to your wife while you was off huntin' and she got pregnant and had a baby, would that make us kin?"   

The 2nd
 guy crooked his head sideways for a minute, scratched his head and squinted his eyes thinking real hard about the question. Finally, he says, "Well, I don't know about kin, but it would make us even!"