Yeah Kazaa really went downhill after about 4 months.
I just found this one tonight. It looks pretty good up to now. You will find the FS software on the site. It's called 'Satalite'
See link

eddie Audio Galaxy 5-25-2002 19:33

Shame on you for encouraging Taylor to spill the beans on this page!!!
I don't want to know just yet.

Eddie 5-25-2002 19:30


Shame on me for missing..........or?

Debra 5-25-2002 18:56

EDDIE -- A search on google.com turns up several pages of hits for "mp3 file sharing" I was using kazaa, but that got a bit "iffy" -- started getting porn grabage along with some of the files.

howard 5-25-2002 18:34

You Know, I really miss Napster. All the CopyCats on the net right now just don't hack it.
Anybody know of any really good ones?

Eddie Simply Writing 5-25-2002 17:07

Very poignant prose. I have sent four out into that same world. They make their way as best they can. Just be there for him without being judgemental. You will be appreciated. Your hard work and personal sacrifice will pay off.

Eddie 5-25-2002 15:37

Eddie: Ok Ok... I get your point. No more mention of that show from this end

Taylor 5-25-2002 12:50



Rhoda...my birthday is in July. I will be 29, and if you believe that I've some ocean front property in Arizona I would like to sell! :-)

We attended Sean's HS graduation last night. They were in a massive, domed, concrete roofed building, the local "coliseum." Halfway through the ceremony my wife adroitly pointed upward, "There are cracks in the roof!" Yes there were! I spent the last half of the ceremony looking at my son sitting below the cracked edifice and an eye cocked at the ceiling. As if I didn't have enough on my mind! I swear if I had detected any indication that the roof might have collapsed I would have leaped over the balcony falling 20 feet to the floor below, raced across the stage, elbowed the HS principal aside, gathered my son up and carried him to safety.

"DAD! Put me down! You're embarrassing me!"

Perhaps I've seen the twin towers collapse too many times.

Anyway...there were 280 students graduating. Fodder for the world to chew on. In my jaundiced view that is. They appear awful young, big minds in so small bodies. Mostly Whites, but a lot of Blacks and Mexicans and a few Orientals. An Oriental boy was ... Valedictorian ... that spelled right? He gave a great speech about how the choices were "yours to make." Good speech, but probably wrong my young graduate. Oh you can make all the choices you wish, but life, nay fate, dictate the final choice. You may choose to stay away from booze but an alcohol crazed idiot might ram your car at an intersection. You may disdain drug use, but a drug crazed fiend break into your home with a knife or gun. You might pick a company such as Enron Oil to work for, only to be given a paper shredder a few years down the road and told "Shred these documents! Quickly!" Positive individual actions do not translate well into negative group choices in our society. "401 K? Ha! That's down the drain for sure. Shred faster!" It seems the negative aspect of group choice is increasing while individual choice grows less and less important.

But go ahead and make your choice graduates of 2002. At this interval of your life intersections of choice are plentiful and wrong decisions often appear to be golden opportunities. Rhoda will be quick to point out that there is one choice that never fails and that is God. I agree.

Sean handled the graduation just fine. Afterward he attended "Project graduation" a HS sponsored allnight party with snacks and music and dancing. He came in at five after they served breakfast and went to bed. At times like this when thinking of my children, I look back to when they were tottering around the house as infants. I have a picture of Sean wearing one of my ball caps ... in diapers ... and a grin on his face.

Sean wants to be a military policeman in the AF. The recruiting sergeant told him all military policemen do a tour of duty in South Korea. (Sigh) Sometimes choices are easy to make but hard to live with. Oh no, mine not his. Because my wife and I chose to have Sean, to introduce him to the world, to nurture and love him ... and all, much too soon the world will have him. Now the choices are his to make and I pray the world will appreciate the fine young man it is getting.


Randall 5-25-2002 12:43

Welcome Allen Bell! Sounds pretty promising to me when someone takes the time to write a note and clip it to your manuscript.

Viv again 5-25-2002 11:49

Thank you Rhoda! I especially enjoyed that calorie free unbirthday cake. I needed that.

Viv 5-25-2002 11:46

Shame on you girl.

Eddie 5-25-2002 10:33

Go to email or you will be in a world of trouble!

Eddie Simply Writing 5-25-2002 10:33

I feel left out :¬)

Eddie 5-25-2002 10:31



I got home late due to, well let's not go there, I missed the finale.

Pleae tell me what happened to the sister. Can she get here baby back and are they are couple.

I turned it on to see they laying next to each other. He looked fantastic and that's all I saw.


Debra 5-25-2002 8:36


to HOWARD, TEEKAY, TAYLOR, ELAINE, AMERICO, RACHEL, VIV, MARY, CHRISTI, JACK, LITTER, RANDALL, TINA, ROSEMARY, and anyone else I missed who has not had a birthday this week.

I don't want anyone to feel left out.

Rhoda 5-24-2002 22:56

Cant remember which one this is off but it goes

Mulder: "Do you think he does it because he gets off on it?"
Scully: "No I think he does it because you get off on it"

And when right click it sounds like a filing cabinet opening

Taylor 5-24-2002 20:45

I have X files desktop theme on my computer

Yes I am a fanatic
Yes I think Doggett is no Mulder
Yes I still watch it

Taylor 5-24-2002 20:42


OOps. I mean, JERRY'S birthday isn't till the day after tomorrow.


Teekay 5-24-2002 19:33


Not to be a stickler for detail but.....

it isn't HALLEE'S birthday and JERRY'S birthday isn't till tomorrow.

WHAT THE...............??????


Teekay 5-24-2002 19:22


I am a 41 year old male recently disabled with fibromyalgia and rheumotoid arthritis. I have dreamed for years of writing, so now is my chance. I have alot of time to dedicate to it.
I have wrote letters to the editors, small articles in local free papers. I recently sent a short story into a magazine " Night Terrors" and they turned it down but the editor clipped a hand written not saying, " Needs work, needs to be longer, your writing shows potential , please submit to us again." is this a good thing?
Please email me so if I do not get a chance to hit the message board I can get feedback and make some writer friends.....allen_bell@writermail.com

Allen not sure yet 5-24-2002 19:21

EDDIE -- you should have had them by now - sent them a while ago.
I don't have any of the ones you mentioned...

I do have the last couple of episodes on vhs, but I understand it's a different format than you have oysotp. You definitely won't like lfslxx hhtes #$sjdt tjyrja lfsitdn sjdjt 4536364 T*$&3 6--oi !
But I won't spoil it for you!


howard 5-24-2002 17:28

Almost forgot.. New mail notification is the only one don't have... AHEM...
Did I mention my email address?

Eddie 5-24-2002 17:12

The X-Files theme is only on the web preview. I forgot to cancel the 'Loop Forever' option in Microsoft FrontPage when I uploaded it. I use the theme.wav as my start up system sound only. I have the full set of X-Files sounds set up on my comp:

Start up; X-files theme
Empty bin; "They're systematicaly destroying all the evidence"
Exit Windows; They're shutting us down Scully"
Critical Stop; " I cut the main breaker"
Question; "What are you going to do?" (Scullys' voice)
Windows Deafault sound; "Status Unexplained" (Moulders voice)
Program Error; "As of right now I'm re-opening the X-Files" (Skinners voice)
Asterix; "Deny everything"

Geeky I know, But I love it.

DON'T tell me about the finale! We are still waiting for it over here. We are only on about 7 of Enterprise right now. (Archer was in the detention camp with what's is name from Quantum leap (The one who talks to Ziggy) Playing the camp commander)Funny how everybody recognised Malcome in that episode, must be the eyes.

Eddie 5-24-2002 17:09

ELAINE -- Congradulations! I hope speling isent a big part of youre grad their for sophmore honers! ;-)

ANONYMOUS POSTER -- I saw that too. Scary.

EDDIE -- Credit where it's due, I always say. Thanks for the link! They've got some good stuff there.
Also, the "Cool Tips" Ebook at www.boogiejack.com has some really good stuff too, for free.
I like your desktop -- X-Phile are ya? Me too, although I thought the finale rather sucked (to use the vernacular). Dunno if I could stand the theme all the while the desktop is displayed, but I do have an xfile.wav file that announces my mail.

howard 5-24-2002 16:22

Thanks for those great words on my site. It makes it all worthwhile when somebody appreciates it.

Eddie Simply Writing 5-24-2002 16:05

That's :¬(

My Desktop 5-24-2002 15:56

Thanks Elaine for the birthday wishes.
Any windows freaks out there, heads up. Check out the link for a look at my desktop. I'm using Windows98 on this machine. I posted a link a few days ago to the site where you can download the stuff to play with.
Its at http://www.wincustomize.com

Eddie My Desktop 5-24-2002 15:55

First things first: HAPPY BIRTHDAY to EDDIE, HEATHER, CHRISIE, HALLEE, and JERRY! It might be belated, but I've just finished school. Big breath: I'M FREEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEE!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! I don't have school any more!!!!!! My examines are all done and I'll know if I've failed sophmore or not in a couple of weeks. Vanguard is going to start in approxiametly 2 weeks!! AHHHH!!
Oh and HALLEE, 'till Niagara Falls' is a goodbye that a friend of mine started. We and the band went to Niagara Falls last year. Then she sent me a letter this year with a sign-off, 'till Niagara Falls', and I had to use it. How is everyone else? I'm so relieved to be finally out of school. I can't wait to start marching. I just hope that my shoulders and back can last till midway through July.
Well, this was my little note to y'all, I have catching up to do in the NB yet, but I'll try to be quick about it.
Till Niagara Falls!

Elaine 5-24-2002 15:23

"It doesn't matter who dies," the Palestinian boy
told the American journalist, "just as long as
they're Israeli." His father, sitting nearby, didn't
try to dissuade him. Instead, referring to suicide
bombing, he told the reporter, "If [my son's] time
has come, he will die . . . But at least he will die
for a cause. I will live the rest of my life being
proud of him."

What makes these words remarkable isn't the
intoxication with death and killing. It's that these
words weren't spoken in a refugee camp on the West
Bank or the Gaza Strip. They were spoken in a café in
Falls Church, Virginia, a twenty-minute drive from
the White House. And the dad and son weren't recent
Palestinian immigrants but the child and grandchild
of immigrants.

While not all of the Palestinian-Americans
interviewed by NPR's Barbara Bradley volunteered to
blow themselves up, every one defended and justified
the actions of suicide bombers.

5-24-2002 12:42

A belated happy birthday Jerry. Liked your latest ghost story! Scary! You are getting to be quite an expert. Hope you enjoy your vacation.

Carol: Thanks. Posted one off to you...half a one. Not enough, but a little.

Viv 5-24-2002 10:31

oops - forgot to put my name - that was from me. :)

Hallee 5-24-2002 10:18

Birthday, Jerry!

5-24-2002 10:17

Happy Birthday Jerry! Have a great weekend!

howard 5-24-2002 8:00

Alot of Birthdays this month
Happy birthday Jerry

Taylor 5-24-2002 7:48

Happy birthday tooo yoouuu
Happy birthday tooo yoouuu
Happy birthday dear Jerryyyyy
Haappy birthday toooo Youuu

Eddie Simply Writing 5-24-2002 3:13

Thank you, thank you, thank you.

Thought I was going to have to put up a neon sign announcing my Birthday this year. I know it's not nice to promote ones self.

We will be heading out for the campground bright and early tomorrow, so I shan't be posting again for a few days, but will be enjoying my family and the campgrounds, the lake, and maybe, if the weather cooperates, a bit of that game with the wood mallets and wood balls, where you knock them through the wire loops, can't recall the name, but I do love the game. We did make a special mallet for me, as my six foot one frame just doesn't bend as much as it once did, so I needed a long handle. An old broomstick seemed to do the job nicely, but I do get a few strange looks when I use it, from the folks walking by.

Americo - It seems that the world goes by cycles, always has and probably always will, at least till we blow it up some day. I fear you are right about the present trend in your neck of the woods. As has been said, we hear so very little of what is happening there, the news wants us to keep up with happenings in the Middle East where the trouble is all stemming from, but fails to keep us up to date with anything else in the world. Sort of like they were with the Vietnam war, the Korean war, and almost any other war that you can think of that's been happening lately, seems we have had our fair share.

Maybe you folks are right, maybe we are a bit quick on the trigger. I don't think we were this time though, that attack on New York was simply too shocking, to horrible not to retaliate in some way.

I know, I know turn the other cheek and all that, but I recently heard that interpreted a different way, seems that in the middle east if you turn the other cheek you are not inviting another hit, but giving the striker a put-down of some sort.

True the U.S. Seems to have a big head most of the time, we are right, and if you don't believe that, just ask us and we'll tell you. But way down deep, we are sort of nice folks, it's just our leaders that are a bit on the pushy side. I think it comes from the small pay check that those folks who serve get, it used to look like a big check, at least to we, the minimum wage earners, but when compared to many other professions that most of those in Congress or even in the White House, the pay is very small indeed. With such small pay we don't incite the really smart, really good leaders, their all CEO's and such with big business, leaving the real nut cases in politics.

Jerry 5-24-2002 0:25

I didn't do it!

5-23-2002 23:21



I hate shorties because I have a terrible time doing things like poems and short stories. But it is a worthwhile exercise and I enjoy reading everyone else's shorties, so I will try.


Congratulations to your son on his completion of high school. It sounds like you have great kids. It is this time of the year that I DO NOT miss Texas, though I think Louisiana will be bad enough if not worse (hot and humid, what can be worse?). Here in Tulsa it has been mild, sort of like northern Michigan. Today it was overcast and in the low 70's. Tonight we had a nice thundershower. The flowers are much prettier than they were last year at this time when it was so dry. I am enjoying this weather, because it is not typical and I feel that every mild day is indeed a gift from God. The hot, uncomfortable summer will be here soon enough.

Rhoda 5-23-2002 23:13

Happy Birthday Jerry!!!!


5-23-2002 22:51

Ok, here it is...if there are any volunteers to take over shortie night, please feel free to do so. However, if nobody else wants it, I will continue to offer up a weekly theme. Unless Jon offers up a theme, in which case his theme over rides my theme and you should all still write about whatever you want and post it here. LOL

Please, write something and post it on Thursday nights!!!

Mary 5-23-2002 22:50

Fifty One years ago, on the 26th of May 1951 my mother gave birth to a son, not more then a mile from where I sit. When I was born, the nurse (knowing that dad wanted a boy, and that they already had two girls) jokingly told dad via phone (he was in the Palace Hotel across the street from the Hospital) that he was the father of another girl.

Dad went to the bar for a drink, then came over to the hospital, when he entered mom's hospital room, mom asked if he would like to look at his new son. Dad's reply was "your still on drugs, didn't they tell you it was another girl?" It took mom nearly twenty minutes to convince him that I was indeed a boy, he was very happy when he learned the truth. He was, however very angry with the nurse for playing such a trick on him.

This is, after all a very small town, where everyone knows everyone else, and knows almost all their busiess, at times, they know more then the folks it happened to.

I think my son solved my computer problems, at least after taking his advice, the machine seems to be running right. I decreased the speed of the video card, from 4X to 2X, and added two more cooling fans to the system, one on the case and another on the VIA processor. Thus far, the machine hasn't locked up again, or given me cause to reboot and the advice was given at eight o'clock this morning.

When they are young, we expect our kids to listen to us, when we are old, we should learn to listen to our kids.

Jerry 5-23-2002 22:39

EDDIE -- Brilliant! I am awe-stricken!

EVERYBODY -- if you haven't checked Eddie's site, do so, and prepare to grovel.

BTW -- it's not "shot-peppered" -- that leaves the hide useless for banjo heads.

Reminds me of the old story about the Englishman, the Frenchman, and the American who were captured by a remote tribe in South America. They were condemned to die, but the chief, being a civil man, offered them their choice in the matter, even to the extent of allowing them to do the execution itself. They were told that their death would not go wasted, but that their skins were to be used to make royal canoes for the chief's family.
The Englishman chose to fall on his sword, cried out "God save the Queen", and did so.
The Frenchman, not to be outdone, also asked for a sword, cried "Vive la France!" and bravely fell on it.
The chief turned to the American and asked "Do you also wish a sword?"
The American said "Nawww -- gimme a fork!" They did, and he proceeded to stab himself wherever he could reach, then turned to the chief and yelled "Go ahead, you SOBs -- lessee you make a canoe outta that!!!!"

howard 5-23-2002 22:14



Hello to Americo and Jon. Glad to see your up and functional. Not much to say guys. I've been hauling my camper to work this week. I park it behind the store and at dinner fix a quick bite to eat and take a short nap. It seems to make the afternoons easier. My wife is worried. She thinks one day I'll just keep going, ending up in southern Utah north of Monument Valley or western Wyoming above Yellowstone or northwestern Montana just below the Canadian border.

Well, never thought a whole lot about it really. Well, it's a thought! :-)

My son graduates HS tomorrow. Then the Air Force in July or so. Sadly, now I will have to give the devil his due, my soul. I worried over Sean more than Sara. Sara has finished her freshman year in college. Wants to be an international banker. Why? I haven't the foggiest idea. Probably wants to work with money I suppose. Really wild, my daughter he banker. Weird, because bankers like school yard bully's are my mortal enemy.

Jerry ... it's mild and dry in Texas, now. All to soon it will be hot as hell down here though. I'll shoo some dry air up there if you'll shove some cold air down here. :-)
My friend in Utah tells me they have already began water rationing in most irrigation systems south of the Salt lake Valley. Great.

Gotta go.


Randall 5-23-2002 21:20

***The not so evil *R ***


Do they still play crickett in Britain, or has it been pretty much replaced by soccer and rugby? It was mentioned in an article I read today and I just wondered.


What is going on over there? I am interested, and I don't know if we are getting good coverage by our news outlets who don't tell us much about Europe anyway. Are your neighbors and friends more right-winged than they used to be or is the right-wing thing a lunatic fringe that is growing? And why is it that Europe is so prone to dramatic swings? Traditionally your main stream politicians make our more liberal Democrats sound conservative. Then when you do have Conservatives, they sound like what would be considered members of the Klu Klux Klan over here, hateful and very extreme.

Someone explain this to me. If you don't wish to cover this on the Notebook, e-mail me if you get time. What I would like to know is that if the hearts of Europeans are really changing.


Thank you for sharing those sayings. They were very funny.


You have done great with the shorties. I personally see no need to replace you unless you want to take a rest.

Rhoda 5-23-2002 20:53

Eddie: Haha there.

Americo: Welcome back from this side of Australia to

How is everyone doing?

Taylor 5-23-2002 20:09


AMERICO: Welcome back. You have no idea how much you missed me.

Teekay 5-23-2002 19:42

I'm just tired, not thick. another URL slip. This one is ok.

Eddie Simply Writing 5-23-2002 18:05

Thank you for the birthday wishes.
And thanks to everybody who wished me a happy birthday.

You must be more careful how you phrase some of your wishes. Just what was it of boba fets' that you wished to get hold of? :¬)

Eddie Simply Writing 5-23-2002 18:02

Good to hear from you again. Where have you been all this time? So Beckham is once again kicking a ball with his rapidly healing foot. Did I ever mention that I supervised the foundation underpinning and piling on the house next door to his when he lived in Manchester? (Pre Victoria days). I used to talk to him most evenings before leaving site for the office. Whay Haay!.....NameDropping rules OK. Nice house even back then, (Gated, cameras etc.) Probably £750,000 worth at the time. Nice if you can get it.
Watch out, somebody has an eye for shot peppered cat around here.

Ahh, breathing, yes I remember it still. Hold halfway through the out cycle and squeeze gently. (Two of the five marksmanship principles) The only thing I regret is that it was NOT DUMB animals I had in my sights. War is bad and I was just a kid really. (Don't ask)
In a lighter vein, I also competed in the British Army marksmanship competitions at Bisley. I have several trophies.
Complaining about spam is good, somebody must have heard me, only two today! Those poor girls, still trying to get through college on our handouts for their visual favours.
Sorry about the bad link in my last post. Here is the good one.
Later everybody,

Eddie Wincustomize 5-23-2002 17:57

Hi all!

Just found these at the skydiving site I go to. Fun!

* *A pessimist's blood type is always b-negative.

* *Practice safe eating - always use condiments.

* *A Freudian slip is when you say one thing but mean your mother.

* *Shotgun wedding: A case of wife or death.

* *If electricity comes from electrons... does that mean that morality comes from morons?

* *Marriage is the mourning after the knot before.

* *A hangover is the wrath of grapes.

* *Corduroy pillows are making headlines.

* *Is a book on voyeurism a peeping tome?

* *Dancing cheek-to-cheek is really a form of floor play.

* *Sea captains don't like crew cuts.

* *Does the name Pavlov ring a bell?

* *A successful diet is the triumph of mind over platter.

* *A gossip is someone with a great sense of rumor.

* *Without geometry, life is pointless.

* *When you dream in color, it's a pigment of your imagination.

* *Condoms should be used on every conceivable occasion.

* *Reading whilst sunbathing makes you well-red.

* *When two egotists meet, it's an I for an I.

* *I submitted ten entries into a Best Pun contest. I was sure I would win, but, unfortunately, no pun in ten did.

* *Since "Pro" is the opposite of "Con", is Progress the opposite of Congress?

And a thought... Jack! We could use that archive any time ;-)

Tina 5-23-2002 13:44


you did a good job in your time. A warm thank you is your severance pay.

Any volunteer to replace Mary as shortie-night Minister? Perhaps some fresh blood. There are promising new faces in the forum. Welcome to all of them.

A* is hereby appointed Minister for sports and games. Ah, it's the World Soccer Championship soon. And on the 5th June the USA will be playing Portugal. I will be delighted if the USA wins ...

Congratulations on the birthdays of Eddie, Christi, Hallee and... no, Jack's birthday will be only on the 27th.

Kisses to all and everywhere.

Jon 5-23-2002 12:57


You might have a good point there. Hitler, Mussolini, Franco in the past... And you can add Le Pen, Haider and other fascist leaders now. Europe is going to the extreme-right again. Not a good sign.

Red carpet for Jon now, please.

Americo 5-23-2002 12:51

Jingle bells, Jingle Bells - the end of May and it's snowing.

GOD How I miss Texas.

Best get the water in the Camper so we can go camping, hell, think I'll even put the sled in so we can go sledding down the snow banks!

Jerry 5-23-2002 12:07

Americo - so glad to see you (and Jon) back amongst us.

I still believe that gun control involves proper breathing, and a gentle squeeze applied to the trigger, so as not to pull the sights out of alignment.

You good folks in Europe can feel absolutely free to control you guns any way you please, after all, you folks are the "civilized" people of the world, who have produced such great minds as Aristotle, Socrates, and many others, such as Hitler, Mussolini, Franco, and so many others. Why it's just plain as the nose on your face that you good folks have no use what-so-ever for guns, in fact I'm in favor of a total ban on guns in Europe and Asia, just not here.

At any rate, it is refreshing to see you back among us.

Oh and JON - My vote goes to Mary for headmaster of shorty night, simply because she is here more often then you are, thus gives much more attention to the chore.

Jerry 5-23-2002 11:59

Not exactly "Bump in the Night" but close enough.

/ I saw the Light
/ By Jerry Ericsson

I’m sure it happens to everyone from time to time, that feeling that there’s something moving around you, just out of your field of vision. You know, like there’s a dog or child moving, but when you look there’s nothing there. It happens to me a lot, mostly at night when I’m going to put the dog out, or to the bathroom, things like that. It used to happen even more when we lived on the farm and a bathroom trip meant a quick walk in the dark to the out house, a flashlight your only companion. What ever they are, they love the shadows.

I’ve always written it off as imagination, just my mind playing tricks on me as I’m sure most folks do, that was until the night I caught one of them.

I was walking through the kitchen in the dark, the only light was that coming from the dining room, enough to find my way, the dog at my heals all excited about his last trip outdoors for the night. I got that familiar feeling of movement, but this time, I turned fast enough to see it, for just a second, long enough to grab it.

I can’t tell you what it was, there simply aren’t words that adequately describe it, but I must try before it gets me, as I know it shall eventually.

It wasn’t an animal, or at least as we know animals to be, yet it was alive, I think. When I made contact with it, I knew it was solid, physical not spiritual, or at least that was my thought. It fought like a wild animal would when captured, it made a noise; a quiet sort of scream that I know was only heard by me, the dog didn’t bark, didn’t see as far as I could tell, as he sat by the door impatiently waiting for me to let him out.

As it fought harder, I could feel my grip slipping, it was as if the thing grew inside my enclosed hand, kept getting larger and larger, forcing my fingers apart, forcing my had open, forcing me to let it go.

I held tighter, my fingernails digging into what ever it was, until I felt the moisture of what was probably blood, or some sort of bodily fluid, if indeed it had bodily fluids, it was quickly apparent that I couldn’t keep my grip, as the force against my fingers grew until I knew that I had to let go or my fingers would break from the force.

The second I let go, it was gone, or maybe turned invisible or something, at least it appeared to be gone. I looked down at my hand, it was pure white, as if all the blood had been sucked from it, my hand tingled with the pins and needles feeling that one gets when his hand falls asleep. There were traces of some sort of green fluid on my fingernails, and everywhere the fluid was burned as if it were covered with acid. I rushed to the sink and ran cold water over them till the fluid was gone, the feeling began to return, and the burning went away.

Although I was a bit shaken from my experience, I continued with my mission, much to my little dog’s relief, and by morning I had convinced myself it was just a waking dream of some sort, although I have never had such a thing, I have read about them on the internet, and know that they exist. That’s what it must have been, after all there are no such creatures as the one that I encountered, or dreamed that I encountered that night.
I thought that way until the next night, everywhere I turned, I had that feeling that something was moving, all around me, just outside my vision. Then they began touching me, every time they made contact it was as if all the heat from that part of my body was gone, it felt like icecicles stabbing me in my side, my back, and my legs.

I let out a short scream, but I knew it would do no good, well I thought it would do no good, but I forgot about my little dog, when he heard my scream from the pain, the freezing pain, he came running, barking snarling, his teeth biting what appeared to be thin air, yet within seconds they were gone, drips of green fluid spotted the floor. My dog ran to his water dish, and within seconds, he had emptied it.

It took a second to figure out that he had attacked them, chased them from my kitchen, my house.

I refilled my hero’s water dish with milk from the fridge, it’s a rare day indeed when Renn get’s milk.

When I awoke the next morning, my hero lay dead at the foot of my bed. I don’t know for sure, of course, but I think they got him, took him in his sleep it’s the only way they could get him. The question that keeps running through my mind is why.

Why did they take Renn, and not me? Was he defending me again when it happened? I guess I’ll never know, but I do know that I shall miss my little dog as long as I live. If things keep going the way they are that may not be very long.

Since that morning, I’ve had all the lights in the house on, hoping that it will keep them away. No shadows, even my bedroom at night, although it keeps me awake.

I haven’t slept now in four days, but they have left me alone. It’s the lights; I know it’s the lights.

There’s thunder in the west, a storm is approaching. What will happen if the lights go out?

“Don’t make much sense to me Sheriff, how about you?”

“Far as I can tell, the poor fellow was out of his mind, or nearly so, must have died from fright. Doubt that we’ll ever know. It’s just a guess but I bet he had a heart attack when the power went out.”

“Let’s get his body loaded and get out of here, this place gives me the creeps, and that note that he left, why it’s just plain nuts.”

Jerry 5-23-2002 11:36

Sorry 'bout that - I've forgotten how to display the native code for the @ character -- or any other character for that matter. Back to the ref books for me!

howard 5-23-2002 10:25

Been reading up on how spammers harvest Edresses. Many of them use "spiders" that crawl over web pages (like this one) and look for Edresses. They grab anything that has username@address.com, and use it.
I just learned one trick to avoid most of that: change the @ to its equivalent hex code (@) The spiders don't recognise that code (yet) and will pass right over it.
Mine, for example, is htuckey@stny.rr.com
It works if you click on it, but the automated spider is only looking for the @ and doesn't see the @

howard 5-23-2002 9:37

Mary: I am a Star Wars fan... But theres only one thing I would love to get hold of:
Boba Fett's helmet

Taylor 5-23-2002 8:50

Check the following link for some excellent web and general computer tips, including a free Ebook (100 Cool Webmaster Tips) that shows some ways to hide your Edress from spammers.
Also look for a link to computer tips.
There's lots of neat free stuff there!


howard 5-23-2002 8:17

*** The evil *R

Happy Birthday to:

EDDIE, HEATHER, CHRISIE, and HALLEE! (Did I miss anyone?)

Ditto, on the Spam. I get about 25 a day, and some of it very bad. Some of it isn't even in English. I don't know how many appeals I have had to help some poor unfortunate victem in Nigera by transferring money to a bank account. There is some legislation in the House of Representatives pending that is designed to stop some of this, but I cannot see that it would help that much considering that much of this is in other parts of the world other than the United States.

Writing? Oh, but the spirit is oh so willing, but the body is aching. I have been finishing my garden and have been trying to keep my house clean. I enjoy the gardening and am so proud of my flower beds. It is a shame I must leave them next month. We have found a house near New Orleans in Luling. It is 45 miles from my husband's work, but we could not find anything suitable anywhere else. We close on June 16th and plan to move there the first of July. The three kids are home from school, and they have had a great day. I really like having them around. I only wish Frank were here, because the single mom thing I do during the week is getting old now.


Good to see you back, you naughty kitty. Glad to see AMERICO.

Even though I am busy, I have had the opportunity to do some writing. I am almost 100 pages into the novel. I do have to work faster. I was hoping to finish in six months and already I have gone nine.

Rhoda 5-23-2002 1:25

JON: I will be expecting severance pay.

Mary 5-23-2002 0:21

Mark, your right of course, that's what the wife keeps telling me. Now if I could just get a refund....

Jerry 5-22-2002 23:53

AMERICO -- Welcome back!

JON -- Duck!

howard 5-22-2002 23:29

I've been getting that spam from my own address too -- and some of it is downright repulsive.

I'm also developing an intense disliking for cats. Someone has apparently dropped off a litter of them behind my barn, and they're all over the place. There are at least five, maybe more, and they are beginning to make me angry enough to commence firing. Haven't had to do that in a while, but when it comes to a choice between enjoying the sight of goldfinches or smelling cat pee all over the place, I'll go with the finches. We're starting to hear reports of rabid cats in the area too, so I think it's time. Besides, I need at least one decent hide for a banjo head.

howard 5-22-2002 23:21

{In the days before telemarketers} We had gone to the funeral parlor for my Uncle Bob's wake. Home not more than five minutes when the phone rang. My Dad got it.
-- Hi, is Bob there?
"Uh, well." He hesitated. Bob often lived without a phone, so people looking for him would call one of the other Lenihans in the book. "Uh, Bob passed away."
-- Oh, uh, I'm sorry.
"Thank you. Good night."
He hung up the phone and stared at it for a few minutes. I asked if he was OK.
"That guy didn't say Bob Who. That couldabeen a wrong number."

HEATHER -- wasn't it a year ago we all sat here and swapped "Where was I when I turned 30" stories? Gosh. The farther away it gets, the harder it is to remember. Write it all down, so it'll all be there for you when you get old. I write quips about women to help me remember what to do with one.
Happy bird day two ewe. You animal.

HALLEE -- I was gonna ask, does this guy wear a uniform? But I see he does. I sense a pattern here.
Speaking of patterns, nice web site. Front Page 2000?

LITTER -- sending porn to yourself, eh? Check your palms.

JERRY -- I haven't counted, but it sure seems like you've been through a lot of $25 eBay transactions and you still can't keep a machine. Man, if you'd slap the next $25 into a can and save up for a real PC you'd be better off. Look at cyberpowerpc.com. I don't need the OS, (I have XP, win2000, win98, and Mandrake 8.2) so I got a basic computer and loaded my own system. Complete hardware for under $500 (no monitor, of course). Bought one for work in January. Set it up, loaded it with all the apps we use on the job, put it at a Care Manager's desk and it has run without a hitch since. Since January you've talked about computer glitches once a week.

CHRISTI -- 54 ?? Wow, you sure don't look it.

More later,

Mark 5-22-2002 22:48

On the spam thing, I still get a bunch of it, but the porn has abandoned me thank God. I don't miss it a bit. I am getting all sorts of investment crap, don't know what they expect me to invest, but it's fairly easy to trash it.

What I normally do is to go to the properties of the message and copy the header of the message then send it to:

abuse@whaterver the address is. It works some of the time, as I get responses from many of my abuse reports. Of late however they say that the spammers have found a way to counterfeit the header also, so there's not much they can do about it.

Your right though about responding to their un-subscribe stuff, I think most of them take you to some research place that gathers the names and sells them to other spammers.

Spam is joining the telemarketers and JW's in the line of most hated entities on the face of the earth.


Write on

Jerry 5-22-2002 21:44

HALLEE - When I married the wife, we had known each other for exactly six months. Thus far the marriage (which everyone thought might, just might last six months) has lasted over thirty two years.

Happy Birthday to Christi, Eddy, again to Heather, and to JACK, I believe yours is just around the corner.

Still fighting with my computer, I may be responsible for the dang damage myself, I was just reading on the proper way to fit the heat sink (Most important with Athlons) and it appears I didn't follow the advice that I just read back when I assembled/reassembled/re re assembled the machine.

My processor may have suffered from my neglect, so all that I've been bitching about is my own damn fault.

Well not the weather, the weatherman on tonights news said there was a sever thunderstorm watch for the east and central part of the state, a blizzard warning for Montana, and high wind warning for our part, now the stuff in Montana usually gets her rather quickly, personally I would rather have the thunder, but I guess that's what I get for living in God's Country. (Haven't decided which GOD that is, but folks here about keep saying that it's where we live.)

Jerry 5-22-2002 21:38

The spam we all get nowadays is so nasty that I am even thinking of giving up the Internet. There is no use changing one's address. Spammers soon discover the new one.

I have been reading my early posts and thinking how naive I was. I believed that man was intrinsically good and reliable. Gradually I found out that there is a little monster in each of us. Let me get back to my innocent days and try to guess the mischievous elf that hides in some of the Notebookers, starting of course with A*, my neighbor. Hope no-one becomes offended.

A*— can't suffer fools gladly, forgetting that he is also a fool.
H*— can't dissociate the old Bible from contemporary History, being rather unjust to Arabs and Palestinians.
R*— idem but making a serious effort to see clearer in the Episcopalian blindness.
E*— unable to recognize that English soccer sucks if compared with Iberian one.
G*— this son of a mixture of the best bloods in History (Portuguese and Irish) has inherited the humor, but not the coolness of his ancestors.
JE*— an extremely sensitive man, cannot see that gun control is absolutely vital for the preservation of the species, including his own.
J*— he would be perfect were it not for his incredible procrastination.

I cannot see any evil in people like Rachel, Allein, Christi or Heather, though the latter should refrain from some words which disfigure her pretty face.

And by the way, Mary is fired from her task as Minister of the shorties-night. I will take care of that myself again, if and when the Notebook recovers the splendor of yore.

PS. I am the only one without any defects at all, sheer perfection, as you all know... (ellipsis)

Jon 5-22-2002 21:35


5-22-2002 20:24


I also got an email apparently sent from me!

I discovered it came from a Casino (North-American?) with the following URL:


No www. in the address.

There should be a law against these nasty people!

Heather: congratulations on your birthday!

Americo 5-22-2002 20:21

Whaddya mean it's too late? It's never too late.

5-22-2002 19:27


54 years ago a very special event occured. It would have been documented and declared the world over, but no one could find a pen at the time, which is a bit of a shame really.

However, we, the chosen few have come into personal contact with this being of light and love and for that we are truly blessed and grateful.

All, let us raise our voices and our glasses to CHRISTI *hic*

5-22-2002 19:26

Anybody like 'Skinning'?
Go to the site below to get Windowblinds, ObjectBar, IconPackager, Winstyles etc

Eddie WinCustomize 5-22-2002 17:10

Yes, the porn spam thingy is really getting out of hand lately. Every bloody day now.
You know, it really makes me livid! My family share this computer and for a while there I was thinking that they were thinking......that I was... Well the same thing is happening to Sharon, one of my daughters and her husband so we complain collectively now. Before, I just deleted it and hoped that nobody else saw it, now we just routinely delete it as it comes in. There has to be something that honest people can do about this. The abuse adds. are useless. Oh, and DO NOT follow the 'Unsubscribe' link. They will just collect your email address and you will get even more of the stuff.

Eddie 5-22-2002 17:08

CAROL -- I just got a copy of "The Pocket Muse" too. It looks interesting.

MARY -- Hysterical? I was hoping the drugs would calm me down so it didn't show...

howard 5-22-2002 16:31

CAROL: Thank you for that. :) I am an Army brat, so I'm not too unfamiliar with it all. And - Gregg is National Guard, so it's just until this whole thing is over.

Hallee 5-22-2002 14:13

Okay - I got through half of it - now I have to get some work done. Hahaha - maybe I'll finish getting caught up later.

Jerry: In April you said something about the IRS sending you a good letter for once. Congratulations. :)

Howard: Thanks for the telecommunications site for the writers. That looks incredibly interesting.

Jack: Congratulations on all of your weight loss!

Heather - are you still practicing your southern accent? Give me a call sometime - this Georgia high school graduate/Floridian who is marrying an Alabamian from South Carolina will help you. (wink)

Elaine: What is the significance behind, "'Til Niagra Falls"?

Mel: Sorry to hear you've had such a sick year in your household. Hopefully springtime will shoo all those nasty bugs away.

Randall: Sorry to hear about your father-in-law and the subsequent problems.

Rhoda: I went to New Orleans for my 30th birthday in March. It was the first time I've ever spent any time in Louisiana. It is a beautiful state. Also, I've spent the last several weeks helping someone edit a regency romance. I've never delved too much into historical, and had a blast doing it. She has 4 more books spun off from secondary characters that she's working on editing right now. I'm looking forward to reading the rest of the stories.

Rosemary: Wow! Congratulations on your weight loss!

Rachel: Congratulations on selling your house. Have you found a new one yet? Oh - and did we get a score on your exam yet?

Hallee 5-22-2002 14:10

Hi All :)

Well, today's my big day. The first appointment with the rheumataligist (I'm going to have to learn how to spell that my memory!). I'm a bit nervous, but I've armed myself with research and knowledge so hopefully I can ask and answer any intelligent questions.

Hallee -- A big Congratulations and warm hug!! I met my husband in February, we were unofficially engaged by April, officially by May and married in October. The only reason we waited was that he wanted a job before he would set the date. And since I was the only daughter of the family, an elopement was out of the question. :) We've now been married for 21 years. Be prepared for some rough times as a military wife. It is not easy to have a spouse in danger or being parted from one for long stretches of time. Have faith and trust in each other and you'll do just fine. The one rule I've lived by is: No matter what we say, no matter what we do, the truth is we love each other and would never willing hurt one another. Since men and women do think slightly different, it's a good thing to keep in mind. What a word means to us, can have a slightly different meaning to our spouse. Ok, enough advice from me. :D Besides, that's the sum total of my marital advice. The rest is up to you to learn. hehehehe Oh what fun!

Taylor -- I recently got a copy of The Pocket Muse. Here's a trick from that little book on writer's block. Using your Search and Replace buttons, change the names of your characters (no, it's not permanent, just for fun). Ie. Change Frank to Brett, change Mary to Samatha. Anything that feels completely opposite of the personality you now have. See what ideas you get from your new perceptions.

I was going to address a couple other entries, but now my back button ain't a'workn. Pooh! I remember there's a couple of belated birthdays out there, and a future one to Jerry. So Happy Birthday! to those I missed. Dang this memory!!!

On my own writing front, the limbo between awake and asleep last night provided a couple of nifty scenes for my current piece. Including a mystery I had been trying to figure out. Yippee! My hummingbird character now has a name - Eep. Heheheh I like it. Sounds like a name a hummingbird would give himself. I think I'll have fun with his character.

Have a great day everyone!!

Carol 5-22-2002 13:23

Hi guys.

TINA: Hi! Good luck with your financing...that can be tricky.

HOWARD: You are hysterical.

LITTER: I got a porn spam thing today but I don't think it was from you. The 'from' address was: MAILER-DAEMON-UNDELIV.... Seems these jerks are getting quite clever, I even opened this one, thinking it was a message I had sent that didn't make it and I wondered which one it was so I could resend again. No attachment though, it just had some porn link in it, but I don't remember if it was the same as the one you stated here. Probably not. How are you anyway???

HEATHER: I am beading away girlie...just taking a break.

Any Star Wars fans out there? I have over 400 vintage, factory sealed Star Wars items listed on eBay. They are getting bids like I can't even believe. Email me private if you want the privvy on this stuff before it goes up.

SHORTIE THEME: Thing that go bump in the night.

Mary 5-22-2002 12:58

Hello guys!
Just posting to let you all know that I'm not dead (yet) and I have two days until school ends. Have to go study for semester finals!
Till Niagara Falls!

Elaine 5-22-2002 12:33

LITTER -- Sounds like the KLEZ virus (or a variant of same). It's nasty. There's a fixklez exec available for free from www.symantec.com that's supposed to help clean it up. Good luck!

howard 5-22-2002 12:08

Anita and I were married 'in a big rush' for the exact same reasons. That was back in 73 when I was in service. The security problems in Northern Ireland were the 'inconvenient war'
Good luck.

Eddie 5-22-2002 10:54

Heads-up people!

Apparently I have been sending porn email spam. I have, apparently, sent the spam to myself???

I have not, and never would, send anything of this nature (Porn and/or spam)

Since my machine has been checked as clean by Computer Associates most up to day anti-virus program, and that failed delivery address are all from 'Yahoo' I am presuming that the addresses were probably harvested for Yahoo Groups or from someone who knows a lot of people with Yahoo email addresses.

Anyway, I have NOT turned into a porn baron, should any of you have the misfortune to receive this spam -- it refers to the following link (the bit after the www has been left out to disable the link) which is

'terra.es/personal8/drunk chix/...' (looks like a Spanish company?)

You should be able to filter your email if you have a problem like this. I'm off to filter mine now.

Oh, the emails are being sent from an address which, at the moment, I have set up only to receive mail. (My 'co.uk' address)



Litter 5-22-2002 9:49

Hi everyone!

Yes - it seems kind of fast. We've been together since January. So, by the time we get married - it will be only six months. But, the second we met - we clicked - in a big way. I cannot describe it accurately. If he wasn't getting deployed, we wouldn't be moving this fast. But, the rationale is that if something were to happen to him, I would be his wife in the Army's eyes instead of basically nothing. And, if something as simple as marrying him before he leaves instead of when he comes back helps ease his mind on certain things, I'm happy to do it. Because I know, without a doubt in my mind, that until him I didn't even know what being in love meant, and I'm going to spend the rest of my life with him. The timing of this whole war sucks - really - haha.

So, I hope that helps clarify a little. The people who interact with us on a daily basis and know us are just thrilled to death. Apparently, we're perfect for each other and this marriage was pre-ordained. (grin) (Including my parents, which kind of shocked me. I expected at least one lecture - but they're actually ecstatic about this whole thing.)

Today I'll catch up on the postings. Have a great day all!

Hallee 5-22-2002 7:00

Congratulations Hallee! Wish you all the best

Jerry: Hope the weather eases up for ya soon.

Tina: I agree with you about the dialogue of Attack of the Clones... And most of time the actual plot seemed a little thin, but the couple of subplots looked interesting.
Wander how the 3rd prequal is going to tie it all together

Happy Birthday to all whos having one, cant remember who. I haven't been on much lately.

I've only written a line in my novel since Friday... And I thought that I had reached the easy part to write. But words just aren't coming for it!

Taylor 5-22-2002 2:57

Terriably windy day today. Had to drive the wife up to see her eye doctor, a twentyfive mile drive each way in the wind, ghusting around forty miles per. When we got home there was a message on the machine, "HELP DAD!" it was my daughter, the wind caught her storm door, broke it in half. When we got there, she had it taped shut with duct tape (Always teach your kids the value of duct tape!).

I used my little electric screwdriver to remove the door, and using parts, re-enforced her back storm door so it could withstand the wind.

Went home and right to work on this damn machine. Finally got it to accept windows, had ME almost setup when it crashed again. This was a bad one, I had to resort to Linux again to square away the hard drive, but it crashed during the install.

That may have been a GOOD thing. I left the Linux partition on the hard drive, and used a little ll gig partition to install windows 98. It's working again, windows 98 running without a glitch. I was thinking it was the hard drive, now I believe it more strongly then ever.

Have to hint to the wife, my BIRTHDAY is this Sunday.

We are going Camping for my birthday, down to the lake, just thirteen miles south of there, but a world away when it comes to living. May get a chance to write a bit over the three day camporama, hope so. Think I'll take my little old 486 laptop along.

Well it's late, and I must be off to bed, tomorow is another day, just watched the Discovery special on the collapse of the twin towers, and the attack on the Pentagon is on right now. Too damn depressing to watch both so close together.

Nite all


Jerry 5-22-2002 1:24

Happy Birthday Eddie, and Christi too!

Just saw Episode 2. I won't post a spoiler, but I loved it! Except that Lucas needs to get better at writing dialogue. A few scenes were overwrought. Funny how every movie I watch also gets its script analized. Must be a 'writer' thing.

Still no news on my business loan. I'm getting very very anxious/impatient/frustrated.

Blue Skies!

Tina 5-22-2002 0:55


You know "ughmm" I wasn't going to bring it up, but since Christi did.

ta yaaaaaah!

Kindda quick.

Please details!

Debra 5-21-2002 23:07

No, I'm not until November 16 -- reverse the date and you've got my age on my next birthday!

howard 5-21-2002 22:27


I thank you, dearest TEEK
I sure thank you, dearest TEEK
I'm one whole year older
Now my bladder does leak!

HA ha ha ha! Just kidding--it doesn't ... yet. Thank you, sweetie! You the best.

Happy Birthday, EDDIE, and congrats on the computer programming! It's strange how many of us have birthdays in May and June. Aren't you next, HOWARD?

And CONGRATULATIONS to HALLEE!!!!!!!! How EVER did this happen so quickly? You must dish. You must!

Christi 5-21-2002 22:20

Oh Hallee:



I hope you both enjoy a long and happy marriage!

Debra 5-21-2002 21:00

Happy Birthday

Hallee, Heather and Eddie:

I just love birthdays.

I hope yours' is the best one yet!

Debra 5-21-2002 20:59


HALLEE: Congratulations. I have to say though, you're certainly full of surprises.

Teekay 5-21-2002 20:40


HALLEE: I don't wish you a happy birthday after all as it was not your birthday, but if it was I would.

Teekay 5-21-2002 20:38





And a a pea bee lay ted bird day to HALLEE and EDDIE.

Teekay 5-21-2002 20:13

Thanks, Tina! And best of the best of the best of luck on that biz loan.

Heather 5-21-2002 19:09

Thanks, Eddie!

Hey, if I were going where no one has gone before, I'd wonder why someone named a star 'Eddie French', and who exactly was Eddie?
Did they write your name across the surface of the star, too? ;oD

Heather 5-21-2002 19:08

Of course I did mean Heather for the birthday wishes. Hallee for the happy occasion of her engagement. All the best Hallee and happy birthday Heather.

Eddie 5-21-2002 17:28

Happy birthday Hallee
My birthday too last Saturday!
I got a Star!
My very own star, named after me. I wonder if the register will last?
Imagine the Enterprise orbiting a planet around my star in hundreds of years time. Would somebody wonder who Eddie French was? Would they look me up?
Well, we can but dream.

I finish my exams in three weeks time. I'm almost a professional computer programer! I'm seriously considering staying at Uni to complete my degree course.

Eddie 5-21-2002 13:51

Wow Hallee! Congrats! All sorts of happiness wishes being sent your way right.... now!

Heather, I missed your B-day too. Happy happy!

Waiting for the phone call about my business loan. I'm way more nervous and anxious about this than I was about jumping out of a plane.

Blue Skies!

Tina 5-21-2002 12:03


Congratulations. I hope this guy is worthy of you and that you two will be very happy.

Rhoda 5-21-2002 10:46

Hi all.

I'm getting married next month! WOW. It's like I'm living one of my books. (Good thing I don't write the ghost stories like Teekay - lol)

Okay - back to work. I'll catch up on the posts as soon as I have time.

HEATHER: I missed your birthday. :( Sorry. HAPPY BIRTHDAY!

Hallee 5-21-2002 10:25

Ha ha ha! My bathroom is on the main floor, and my bedroom is upstairs. I run straight up the stairs and around the bend at the top, and there's my dresser. I'd say there is about a thirty foot sprint in there somewhere. ;oD

Heather 5-21-2002 7:34

HEATHER -- Sounds interesting! How far apart are your shower and dresser? :-)
BTW -A belated Happy Birthday! Dunno why, but I completely overlooked it.

JERRY -- I was talking with an acquaintance from my old job at IBM (before I retired) and she said that they're moving away from the individual servers concept, and towards LINUX on mainframes to do their processing. I've got an old version of it around here somewhere -- will have to try it.

howrad 5-21-2002 7:10

THANKS EVERYONE, for ALL the birthday wishes!
I couldn't feel luckier if I was bathing in Jasmine leaves and betting on horses!
Uh, never you mind what I just said.

Seems the keys aren't helping this brain kick in.

Perhaps later!

Love to all, and all a great morning! :oD

(Why do they insist I wear this silly white jacket anyhow?)

Heather 5-21-2002 6:14

Howard, the next time a telemarketer happens to catch me between the shower and my dresser, I'll have to remember some of your terribly creative ways of getting rid of them so I don't make puddles on the hardwood!
Somehow or other I get calls right when I'm absolutely in no state of mind to think up something on the spot.
I'm also not very good at coming up with anything interesting to say on the phone - I suppose I've trained myself to think while I type.

Egads, this post is really not showing much promise, is it?
I'm about bored to shreds.

Mark, your comment didn't slip by me unnoticed! Not that anything else would...

Tina, you brave soul, you!
I'd rip that cord before the plane took off. Yup, I'm all sea and sand, but not too comfortable being more than three feet above it.
I get the heebie jeebies just putting up Christmas lights over our porch! If the lights have to be higher than 8 feet, forget it. That's Wayne's job!
(I'm Taurus to a fault, I suppose.)

Rocks 'n' soil, 'n' good ol' grass beneath my feet, I'm happy. The barer the foot the better.

Fresh manure and all that compost,

Heather 5-21-2002 4:14

Well there is always punishement for those who screw with the telemarketer gods.

I was doing a defrag of my computer today, since I had uninstalled XP and returned to ME for about the tenth time.

The display didn't look exaclty right, I like the display with the little boxes, not the lines, so I clicked on the properties button, no big deal right, this is a 1 gigahertz machine, it should be able to handle those two simple things, a defrag and showing the properties right?

Nope, it locked up, I had to press the reset button.


I can't fdisk, low-level format didn't fix it, couldn't get my norton tools to load, my tech tools wouldn't touch it. I was about to give up when I thought "LINUX"!

I am now running under Linux, it loves this little 20 gig hard drive, lots of room for all sorts of fun things, but I do miss Windows. I even tried to install windows as a second OS on this drive, no way, it keeps reporting the boot sector has failed.

How can this be? When it runs Linux so well? I don't know, all I know about Linux is that its fun to play with, but as a second OS, not primary, I want to play my dang games!

Guess I'll have to watch Ebay and see if I can come on a deal for a new hard drive. The wife is going to kill me.

My birthday is Sunday, maybe...

Oh, and I don't have a spell checker for Linux, well not one that checks this box like I do in windows, so excuse the misspellingss.

I do sort of feel sorry for that poor imigrant who was just trying to earn her keep, after all she isn't on the public rolls, so should be appreciated, just not by me.

Jerry 5-20-2002 22:32

TEEKAY --- Thanks! :-)
I was scared to death of my grandfather for the longest time. I remember he had lost the end of his left thumb (at the first knuckle) in a punch press in the machine shop where he worked. He never went to the hospital, just wrapped it up in a rag and went back to work, and it healed up just fine. There was a stub of bone sticking out the end of it, and he used to grab us kids when we were misbehaving, so that the bone would grind into our arm or wherever, and it would really get our attention!
He had a wolf/husky mix named Lobo, that he kept in a run out back, and grampa was the only one who could get near him, until I made friends with him. I just barely remember when I was about four, that I would reach through the cage and pet Lobo's head, and scratch his ears, and he'd lick my hand. Once in a while grampa would let me into the run with him and I'd play with him.
One day we had a picnic in the back yard, with all the aunts and uncles there, and I went over and reached into the run to pet him. One of my great-aunts screamed and reached in to "rescue" me, and Lobo near took her hand off. He wasn't around too long after that. I still think about him. It about broke grampa's heart, but he was afraid that Lobo might really hurt someone, even me, so he figured he had to get rid of him.

howard 5-20-2002 20:51


HOWARD: I think you must be reading the wrong bible, I shall send you the proper edition.

Teekay the X telemarketer 5-20-2002 19:53

At the risk of taking you into complete hysteria, there's more...

"Hello, Mr. Tuckey, this is Todd Hendley with a courtesy call from Chase bank. How are you this evening?"
"Oh, pretty good, I gue...Todd Hendley?! Any relation to Bill Hendley, from Raleigh?"
"Umm,, no, I don't th..."
"How is old Bill? Haven't seen him in years!"
"Umm, I don't thi..."
"You wouldn't believe some of the stuff we got into! Did he ever tell you about the road apple fights we used to have on the school lawn?"
"No, Mr Tuckey, that's not wha..."
"Oh, you've gotta have him tell you that story -- it'll knock yer socks off! And the one about the midget and the St Bernard too! Well, gotta run along -- tell old Willie-boy I said hello!"
"Umm errr ..."

And my mother lives right up the road from us, and we get the occasional magazine-sales call for her:
"Hello, this is --- from -- subscription services. May I speak to Helen Tuckey?"
"I'm sorry, Mom is no longer with us."
"Oh, I'm terribly sorry to hear that..."
"Oh that's okay, she's in a much better place now, and I know she's happier than she ever was here."
"Oh, it's so good that you're able to look at it that way..."
"Yes -- I just hope this guy lasts longer than the last two!"

howard 5-20-2002 16:47


Tina 5-20-2002 16:09

TINA -- I've got several stock ways to deal with them, depending on my current mood.

1) The caller starts his/her pitch, and I stop them cold, and tell them I offer a Telemarketing Evaluation Service. I will be happy to listen to their pitch, and then write up an evaluation of content, delivery, and effectiveness quotient, and will send it along with my standard $75.00 fee to their billing address. All I need is that address and a supervisor's approval. They usually hang up right away, but I've actually had a "supervisor" come on the line to ask if I really offer that service. I told her "Of course I do!" (As of right then I did, anyway) She said she'd keep me in mind, and hung up.

2) An Olan Mills representative called to make me a special family picture offer. I immediately began hyperventilating, and yelled "Pictures! Pictures? Are you trying to get me killed???!!!"
"But, But..."
" Haven't you ever heard of the Federal Witness Protection Program!?"
"But, but...I didn't..."
"You didn't what?" (I was really into it by now) "You didn't what? Do you realize that now I've got to move all over again, change my name, and my family too, and..."
I think she was crying when she hung up.

3)Phone rang while we were eating supper. I answered it (the cordless phone) and heard "Hello, this is a courtesy call."
I said "Can you hold for just a minute?" and put the phone down in the middle of the table, and went on eating, and resumed the interrupted conversation.
Several minutes later I picked up the phone, and the person was still there! I asked if she was getting the idea that we were enjoying our evening meal. When she said yes, I asked if she had anything to add to the festivities.
She said "No," and hung up.

4) But I think my best one was a call from New Yorker Magazine. I had just awakened from a nap, and heard this guy say "Hello, Mr Tuckey? This is Fred Phillips from New Yorker Magazine. How are you this evening?"
I answered in a weak voice, as if gasping for breath, "Are you bringing my medicine pretty soon?"
He said "No, I'm not calling about medicine, I'm..."
"But you said you'd bring my pills, and I need them."
"No, Mr Tuckey, I'm not calling about your pills, I.."
(weaker, more gasping)
"But I need them now, and you said (cough, gasp) you'd bring them this afternoon. I haven't had my pills for two days now, and I can't (gasp) get along without (hack) them! I'm... I'm... o god..." and I dropped the phone, and disconnected it before he could hear my wife's hysterical laughter.
It was only later that I remembered that I had submitted a poem to New Yorker magazine, and this may have been an editor calling to accept it. Never did hear any more from them.

howard 5-20-2002 15:49

Howard, I love that solution! Can I borrow your line? Can I huh huh huh? Telemarketers have never posed a Big problem to me, but canvassers drive me crazy. They always manage to call while I'm cooking dinner. Without fail. Even if I was partial to their cause, uh, hello, but my dinner is burning and my veggies are turning to mush. I way prefer it when they send out info in the mail.

And Jerry, while perhaps a bit extreme, I bet you said exactly what we've all wanted to say at times.

Tina 5-20-2002 11:33

JERRY -- I get those calls too, and tend to handle/abuse each one differently. Got one on Friday, asking for "Misterr Turkey, please?" I said "ain't no R in that last name," and got a sort of apology. Then she went directly into the written script they read to you. Was gonna hang up, but the evil persona on my left shoulder whispered in my ear, and I let her go through the whole thing - maybe a minute or two of reading. Then she asked what I thought (or something like that), and I said "Oh, I'm sorry -- wasn't paying attention -- could you repeat that?" After a few seconds of mumbling she hung up.

howard 5-20-2002 11:13

I knew I went to far when I heard the heavily accented voice on the other end crack and sob, but damn it, I deserve some privacy, and there aught to be a law that keeps those telemarketers from calling one after 9:00 PM.

My wife looked at me like I was plum crazy, and maybe I was just a bit, but this was the second night when those annoying calls came, the night before we had five count em FIVE calls where there was no-one on the line. Some telemarketers computer checking for live callers, then after picking the dead receiver up five times, the sixth had some stupid survey taker, I was probably a bit easier on that one, I simply told them that, having hung up on me five times, I felt they deserved no less then to be hung up on and then hung up on them.

But the one last night, it was the first time the phone rang, but I was in the midst of fighting with my computer (I won), the wife was watching the news, our dog was whining to go outside, and some stupid telemarketer who had yet to master the English language called, wanting to speeeek to a Mr. Ericessersson, it was just the wrong thing to say to me at the wrong time. I totally went off on them screaming into the phone, questioning their ancestor, and the maritial status of their parents, before hanging up on them.

I don't wonder what it was that she was trying to sell, never let her get that far, but when I heard the sob on the other end, I knew I went to far.

I do hope that they got the message though, don't call my number unless 1.) You can speak English, 2) you know me personally, and 3.) You aren't trying to sell me anything, I buy what I need, when I need it and have no interest in magazines, insurance, or any thing else that your company happens to be selling.

The wife thinks I should "take a pill" or something, she may be right.

I did get another motherboard for this machine and it seems to be working much better, if your interested in a piece of crap motherboard, I have one for sale on Ebay, but I do declare it such in the add. Hopefully some kid looking for a bargain, who don't mind having to use USB keyboards and mouses, will take a liking to it and bid.

The new one is a bit slower then the other, and is truthfully a much cheaper, poorly made, but it does work, and I got it new for 25 bucks shipping included, so didn't expect much from it. It does run my 1000 MHZ chip well, but the front side bus is only 133 MHZ instead of the 200 MHZ of the old one. You can notice the decrease in speed, but it's still about three times faster then my old computer, and this one seems stable, it even allowed me to install XP, something the other refused to do. It took the old RAM that I thought was bad in the other MB and loves it, it must have been the MB all the time that was giving me such trouble. Adding up what I have invested in this new machine, I could well have purchased a "bare bones" machine for two hundred bucks and I would have been money ahead, and that poor immigrant who was just trying to make a buck working the late shift telemarketing would have had a much better night last night.

I do love the high speed internet, we are getting it for the same money we were paying for 56K, but are now going 256K. Here you had to either pay for an extra line, or limit your internet access to times when your not expecting calls, and with Mom calling several times a day, we opted for the second line. So we were paying for a second line, plus the phone company had a 6 dollar charge for access over their lines to the main server some sixty miles away, and the internet company charge all added up to a few dollars more then we now pay the phone company for DSL, and the speed is great. Now if I could just afford their 512K or 1Meg connection...

Jerry Ericsson 5-20-2002 9:28

TINA -- that sounds like fun! Dunno if I could do it, though. Something about "why anyone in his right mind would jump out of a perfectly good airplane..." I do intend to go for a sailplane (glider) ride this summer, though. We have an active glider club here in Endicott, and just a few miles to the west (in Mel's stomping grounds) is Harris Hill -- glider capital of the east. It's only $45 for a ride here, and it's one of those things I've been "gonna do as soon as I get a round tuit." Got one the other day, so I'm gonna do it.

Any X-philes out there watch the finale(?) last night? I was disappointed, really. I mean it was nice to see Mulder back and all, but the whole thing was a bit too cereberal if you ask me. And Reyas and Doggett just drove off into the sunset without so much as a hint as to their fate. I'd kind of like to see a spin-off wrapped around those two.
No, I didn't miss the "messages from beyond" theme, but I gotta believe Carter could have come up with something better than that.

MEL -- I think I'll get back into that "Heiro" sequel. Looks like Lanier isn't going to do it, and I've got some ideas for it. You're right about Amibale -- whoever instructed him has got to be at least close to that "power" in the south. And did you know Luchare and Villah-Rhee are both pregnant!?

howard 5-20-2002 7:43

Okay, Okay, I'm guilty of lurking. I have no defense.

Actually, I was waiting to see if y'all would hunt me down like you do Teekay. (sad low voice... No body loves me, everybody hates me, think I'm gonna eat some worms...)

Well, okay, that's not true. I've been rather down on myself the last few weeks. I'm trying to start up my own business, create my own job, but have been fighting tooth and nail for financing. It got rather depressing. I still haven't secured the financing, but things got better over the weekend.

I went SKYDIVING again! Wooohoo, yeehaw, hoot and holler! Oh yeah baby! It took almost 7 months to get in the air again, and it was wonderful! Yesterday I did my very first freefall, where I pulled my own chute (before, my instructor opened my canopy for me). I have never, ever had such an amazing experience. I have a serious case of PermaGrin, to the point that my cheeks hurt. Some day this week, when I can get a wee bit objective, I'll try and get it down in words, but what a chore that will be! How do I put that feeling of floating 4000 feet above the Earth, able to see snow capped mountain ranges in every direction but without walls and windows interfering, into words? But I'll try.

I'll be jumping again next weekend, weather permitting. Can't WAIT! In the meantime, I just hope I get the good news about my business. If not, I have to pound the pavement. Pennies are too tight for me to be unemployed while I wait for some loans officer to decide my fate. Expecially now that I have an expensive hobby to pay for :-D

On the writing end of things, I had a nice querry letter drafted up, and now I can't find it. Not on the computer, just handwritten. It was the only draft that I liked, and now I can't find it. Bummer!

Now I'm exhausted. My adrenaline has been in overdrive all weekend, and I can hardly stay awake. Doesn't help that as the adrenaline wore off, a head cold moved in.

Blue Skies!

Tina 5-20-2002 1:13

Christi: Thanks for the OK. As I mentioned, it will have to wait until after next weekend and getting this contract done and my Rescue Diver Certification.

The other issue is that things are getting a bit big here. I will be archiving sometime in the next day or so, so get your comments in about the writing life and I will include them in the archive. Take care.

Jack 5-19-2002 18:41


HIYA, GUYS AND GALS! I woke up in the BEST mood today. It surely had nothing whatever to do with the fact that I took in a double feature yesterday, seeing both Spiderman and The Clone Wars (movies are definately NOT books, unless we're talking about Fellowship of the Ring). I dunno. I was bored with them. Spiderman was by far the better movie, however.

I love coming here and seeing all my friends, even though I've not kept up very well.

HAPPY BIRTHDAY, HEATHER! It was fantastic talking to you and TEEKAY on chat the other day.

HA HA HA! I loved your stories about your grandpas, HOWARD and RANDALL! My grandma has a story about starting up a fire as a youth, which turned into a blazing inferno at the top of a mountain. She and her brothers slunk off and hid their heads in the sand, never telling anyone they were the ones who started it. Crikey!

JACK, Congrats on the weight loss and the diving! As for Flash, I don't have a flashplayer, as my phone lines out here only support a sorry 28.8 connection speed, but that's my problem, not yours. :D If everyone else is amenable, I can deal with the longer time it will take me, no problem. :P

TEEKAY, Hurry up and get out of that bog hole, will ya? Sheesh! By the time you guys come around, I'll be down there, clamering for a way out, and I'll be all by my lonesome. :(

CAROL, Hope hubby is okay. Hugs for you.

DEBRA, Hope doggie is okay too!

MEL, Between you and HEATHER, the posting are brilliant! Love to see em.

Hey, RACHE, How's the little guy? Seems like he was born only yesterday!

BONITA, Sorry about your experiences, and thanks for the heads-up. I wish you luck, and hope you get your disks and your money back.

Wishing you all a writerly day. May your words flow like lava down the mountain, and be as steaming hot to boot.
I'm off to try to put a dent in the manuscript. TA-TA!

Christi 5-19-2002 14:12

Verybelated Happy Birthday Heather.

Greetings all and sundry.

He comes, He lurks, He goes!

Litter 5-19-2002 8:17



Thanks Howard...

I'm not surprised at your Grampa's story. The old-timers did a lot more interesting things than we realized! They had no TV or radio or media outlets and had to improvise at all levels, work and leisure. There is nothing as frustrating or rewarding as working with mules and donkeys. I know a woman in town who rides her mule every weekend and loves it. My great grandfather, George Kiser of Mason County was known as a "Mule man" and rode cattle drives into Oklahoma.

Speaking of fire ... My grandfather said one time he and his brother caught a buzzard. They wrapped a cotton cord around one leg, about six feet long. At the loose end they attatched a coal oil soaked corn cob. Lit the cob and released poor Sir Buzzard. Pa said the last they saw of the poor thing he was spiraling upward up to escape the heat below.

Yes, it was cruel but the rest of the story confirms that Sir Buzzard paybacks are a bitch. The cotton rope burned in too eventually, (as it was suppose too) and the flaming corn cob dropped into a neighbors very dry, weed covered pasture. Pa said his family, young and old, boys and girls and adults and cousins and uncles and aunts spent the rest of the day and well into the night fighting a rip roaring blaze with water soaked toesacks, brooms, axes, hoes and shovels.

Pa finished the story and rolled a Bull Durham cigerette. In the silence I asked if fighting fire was hot work?

"Not near as hot as my bottom was after my father finished with me the next day." he replied with a grin.


Randall 5-18-2002 16:20

Bertha does remind me of a story my grandfather always told on himself -- and knowing him, I almost believe it.

He used to plow with a mule, and mules are known for their stubbornness. He'd exhausted just about every way he knew to get that mule to move, but it would stop, mid-furrow, and just stand there in the hot sun. He tried the carrot-on-a-stick method, but that only worked until the mule decided that it didn't really like carrots anyway.
So one day grampa got fed up, and came up with the ultimate mule-mover. He took a torch with him, wired to the plow handle. It was only a short (too short, it turns out) stick, with a kerosene-soaked rag tied to the end of it. He figured that would get the mule moving in a hurry.
Well, sure enough, the mule got halfway down one furrow and stopped. Grampa went through the usual routine, slapping with the reins, throwing clods, but nothing worked. So he untied the torch, gave the mule one last warning, and when it still didn't move, he applied the flaming torch to the mule's backside.
Unfortunately for gramps, mules are known for their prodigious exhaust. Yep, the surprised mule broke wind, and as you may also know this "wind" is comprised of methane gas -- highly inflammable. A ball of flame rolled back at grampa (I told you the stick was too short), and completely singed off his eyebrows and some of his hair. The surprised mule took off, dragging the plow, and didn't stop at the end of the field. By this time the plow was on its side, and the mule headed for the back forty at a record clip. That was the last time gramps tried that trick!

howard 5-18-2002 11:57

Bartleby did a few things we know of, but "pop right up" is something only Heather could make him do.

Mark 5-18-2002 11:46

RANDALL -- !! "Allowing you to post?" "Texas Bozo?" You never heard it here! Oww contrary, mon frer! (Or however that French lingo goes) Bertha is more than welcome here!

HEATHER -- My mistake -- "Bartleby" is indeed at bartleby.com, just do a search and he pops right up.

howard 5-17-2002 22:34


Hey TGIF!!!!!!!!

Howard ... (Sheepish Grin) you old fox! I should have known you would not allow the "tail" to slip by! :-) This may wrap up the Bertha the Donkey tales (Grin)... I want to thank you for allowing me to post and bless you Carol for the kind words. Heather, self-doubt should not be in any function a writer performs. :-) In my humble opinion. Look, I know there people who read my stories and mumble (shout!) "What an idiot! This guy cannot write. Texas Bozo! Who cares about a stupid donkey anyway?"

So what? As far as I know, Jack places few limitations on what we write here, so . . . let me read some of your writings....

There must come a point in a person's life when they cannot let self-doubt control their actions. Right? Write on! Let your fingers loose, free the mind, heck with everyone else ... Kick Out the Jam's MF! (Ah, an old 60's hard rock song.


"So dirt lane riding became our preferred way of exploring. Bertha I believed, even enjoyed these excursions, pulling our buggy in a pasture was undeniably hard on her. Her bag of tricks was severely limited when in harness. No sudden stop, head lowered, or running under trees would affect us now. Trotting down the road she had the habit of turning her head trying to look at us around her blinders and trotting sideways. Probably scheming how to jettison that iron monster behind! Leaving the barn lot sometimes required a gentle touch of the whip. But believe me when she sensed we were returning home ... hold on! She would gallop like a horse as rapidly as we would allow or could stand, because better than rocks, even a sandy road has rough spots. An iron wheel buggy with no suspension and iron seats is definitely "road sensitive!"

One morning we were really rolling, heading home with Bertha at a gallop. Pa was plowing in his field, watching us cruising along. I don't know what happened, one of her harness straps broke allowing both staves to drop. Lodging in the sandy lane these wooden poles somersaulted our buggy, Randall, Darrel, up and over depositing us all three in one jumble of dust, sand, harness, buggy ... disarray. Bertha wasn't concerned with our welfare, a quick look backward, (If I may be permitted, a small departure from known facts. I distinctly heard a chuckle as Bertha sped away.) In a flagrant disregard of our well being she high tailed it home dragging harness behind her. Probably not aware in her donkey brain of what had occurred only reflecting on how much corn awaited. Pa lifted his plow hurrying to the accident scene. He found us okay, no major injuries, only small damage to our buggy.

Ma-Maw was preparing lunch when Bertha arrived at the barn gate and started to bray. Seeing the remains of harness hanging from Bertha, she hurried outside worried that something terrible had happened. She just started to look for us when we arrived with Pa on the tractor, towing our buggy behind. I'm sure they were both concerned then, later in life though the incident was related with much laughter.

Along with touring Darrel and me around the countryside on our buggy we used Bertha to plow our grandparent's garden. Basically the same harnesses were used, just substitute plow for buggy, walk for ride. Ma-Maw's garden was about one-half acre in size, too large to prepare with a shovel (heaven forbid) but difficult for a tractor to maneuver. Although Jimmy Schooley, my grandmother's nephew, once used his six-wheel John Deere for this purpose. It was a back in and plow out scenario though. Bertha was ideally suited for plowing, she was in top physical shape after hauling Darrel and me all over the country. Irascible as ever due to her mind reading prowess, we would have to locate her, usually farthest from the garden as possible. Catching her required a bucket of corn, the skill of a Middle East diplomat and dumb luck. Shaken properly in a bucket, corn usually sufficed though.

Bertha was like a banker. You had to make her believe she wasn't needed to catch her. Bankers are similar. One has to prove they don't need money to get money. Except a banker's ears are shorter! Hooking her to the plow, when finally captured, involved much subdued cursing, fast stepping, rapid dodging and extreme patience.

Making her plow sometimes involved a subtle taste of whip applied lightly to her buttocks. Once she realized her immediate fate was sealed she participated adequately. Ma-Maw's garden contained several fruit trees and keeping Bertha from them required constant vigilance on our part. Bertha was always alert when plum or peach fruit were within biting distance. I guess she considered ripe fruit a "perk" for her labors.

We eventually evolved a plan which made plowing with Bertha easier. Darrel or I would walk ahead with something she liked, biscuit, cornbread, or corn. Then one of us would navigate the plow as she pulled. This worked great. Bertha was extremely stout and had no problem pulling the "Georgia stock," plowing deep rows. We would plow several rows, then feed her a biscuit, switch jobs and go on. Nothing succeeds in any kingdom like bribery. Parts of the garden were shaded by oak trees. Bertha and kids would linger there, drinking homemade grape juice or consuming syrup soaked biscuits that our grandmother furnished.

To visualize this garden plowing means capturing only one segment of our total experience. There were also a variety of smells present, leather harnesses, donkey hair and sweat, peach and plum tree fragrances, freshly turned black soil, Ma-Maw frying chicken and an incredible smell rarely experienced today ... fresh air. A plowed garden of good black dirt has an aroma that could be addicting. It has a fresh new odor, a smell of new life. Film could have captured the visual aspects, only being there could capture the aroma though. What a video camera could have visually captured, but alas, video technology was many years away.

Those of you who know of donkeys and mules have realized what was going on with Bertha the Donkey by now. She had Darrel and I trained, we were used by her as much as we were using her! Her training of Randall and Darrel probably started within minutes of first greeting us as children. Being born a donkey is not the same thing as born stupid. None of God's creatures has been so underrated, intelligence wise, as a donkey.

Early one summer morning after our chores were done, Darrel and I decided to give Bertha a bath in Pa's dirt tank. We led her to the water carrying Ma-Maw's bath soap, scrub brush, even some old perfume we had liberated. Pa told us to carry a curry comb to brush her mane and tail afterwards. He must have got quite a chuckle watching us lead her toward the water.

There was no afterwards.

When arriving at the water hole, only then did Bertha fully understood what was about to happen. Understanding that she was to be bathed she became the legendary immovable object. Nothing we did could move her one inch into that tank. No way was she going to let herself pushed, pulled, or led into that water, soaped down and washed. Period. After much pleading, pulling, pushing and swearing (after carefully scanning for adults) we finally gave up and returned home. Adding insult to injury, she had the gall to stand at the back fence gate braying for biscuits. Her bathing was composed of rolling repeatedly in a dusty area, not bathing in water."

Okay that's basically it on Bertha the Donkey. I mention her several more times in "Spirits" and will wrap this up this weekend.

Happy evening!


Randall 5-17-2002 20:40

Jerry and others: I have been somewhat swamped with contractual work and still have a week to go to get done with this stage of things. As soon as that is done I am doing my Rescue Diver certification course over next weekend. And the Monday following all of that, May 27th, I turn 50 :-) . Hopefully, there will finally be time and opportunity for me to sit down and get things squared away to make the Workbook work as I have envisioned. Actually, I am looking at a possibility of using a growing knowledge of PHP and Flash to create a login/password system that I have a demo of in my documentation. From that it is only a question of what kind of workbook script I use behind the password protected area. It would appear I have something that works in that regard as well, but is related to Flash. Hope nobody has a problem with having the Flash player on their system and I will pursue this tact if I hear back that it is OK. It is also gives me the opportunity to play around and add some animations in while I am doing the other.

Also, just for everybody's edification, I just completed my 73rd dive and I have lost 44 pounds so far or, rather, in about thirteen weeks give or take one. Please accept my sincere apologies for either being too depressed or too swamped or too clueless technically to get the Workbook flying again. Hopefully, this time I will be able to make it work. I have some things I would definitely like to workshop and hopefully I can make this happen. Take care everybody.

Oh, tomorrow Fran and I will be doing a dive at Saltwater Park as part of Dive for The Cure, a group dive where we pay a bit and do a dive and help in a fund in memory of one divers child who died of cancer.

Jack Beslanwitch 5-17-2002 19:49

Heather - what ever became of our ghost story thing? Just wondering, haven't heard a word (discouraging or otherwise) for quite some time now.

Jerry 5-17-2002 19:04

Thanks guys!

Actually, I was thinking just the opposite. I have some amoxicillian here still good, and Pepper seems to have a bladder infection.

So I'm going to give him a little twice a day for five days.

I hope this fixes it.

I don't have the money right now for the vet visit and the medicine too.

Debra 5-17-2002 17:54

Debra -knew that, in fact years ago, there was a fellow in a small town I used to work that would see his doctor, then go to the "Bottle and Vet" shop to buy his medicine. He was a farmer and couldn't afford the high prices of the drug store, just got the same stuff from the Vet shop, (he got a bottle once in awhile too, but that's a different story) and treated himself.

He claimed the vet supplies were better and worked faster then any that he ever got at the drug store. Said the ones that the drug store sell you are twice the price for a watered down version of the same stuff he got at the vet supply shop.

He was still alive and going strong last I saw him, guess he was probably right, but I think I'll stick with the watered down version from the druggist.

Had a nice shorty all written last night, went to post it and CRASH!!!! didn't even have it saved, and I don't even want to think about trying to get it back from my brain. Maybe next week.

That was a short summer, back to the fortys again, the weather man is talking of the year when there was no summer but that was nearly fifty years ago, who knows maybe we have another in the making. Hope not.

Jerry 5-17-2002 17:15

Hi All :)

Debra - it can very well be the same medicine. However - I'm not sure to what level the medical companies have to be precise when making the medications for dogs or cats. Even though some of the medications for dogs may be the same and cost less, you should be very aware that you are taking a chance if you take it. I've found through the years that dogs can get just about any illness humans do -- except for colds, they go right straight to pnenumia (sp??). Dogs can have thyroid problems, epilepsy, kidney stones, bladder infections, irratible bowel syndrome, they can get all the same cancers we can. Is it any wonder that I treat my animals like humans knowing that their bodies can and do suffer just like ours do? Randall very aptly has given a distinct personality to Bertha, facial expressions and all. How wise he is to know the language of another species, even more so to appreciate it.

Elaine - study hard and pass those tests! Just as we have our daily cleaning, children, jobs and what-not to enrich our lives, you have your learning experience. Teekay was right on with her poem. I've got to jot it down and post it nearby! With the appropriate name upon it of course. :)

Randall - You have been brightening my days lately. I come to the site for a break, coffee cup in hand and find a Bertha story. What a wonderful way to take a break! Thank you dear man for sharing these stories here.

Mel -- Whooppee! What a wonderful thing to hear. But then, we all knew you were a writer already. :)

Today has been a good day so far. The aches and pains are minimal. It's funny. When I'm aching, I'm limping. Then I have a day without the pain and my instincts keep me limping. I really have to watch that bad habit.

Even better -- I actually wrote today! Three nice, full pages. Hey, for me, that's good! :)

Heather -- thanks for the hugs. :)

Smile just once today.

Carol 5-17-2002 17:02

Hey guys

Someone just told me that the Amoxicillin that docs give to humans is the same stuff given to dogs.

Can that be?

Debra 5-17-2002 16:13

HEATHER -- Yes, it was Herman Melville, and the bartleby.com site is name after the character, but the story is not there. You can read it at http://www.vcu.edu/engweb/webtexts/bartleby/
if you're so inclined.

howard 5-17-2002 15:37

MEL -- Congrats! Knew you could do it!

ELAINE -- Study hard! Pray too!

HEATHER -- Have you ever read "Bartleby the Scrivener?" by Herman Melville, I think. It's a great story. You can probably find it on www.bartleby.com, along with a goodly number of other great stories.

howard 5-17-2002 15:28


me again 5-17-2002 15:06

Elaine, you don't have to apologize for not posting! We know you're in highschool. Wow, I can still remember highschool..... ;oD

Mel, congratulations!!! Those are the kind of comments that stick to the ribs and give a tickle every so often! More of those, please!!! :oD

Scrivners.... Oh, my. That was the name of the oral surgeon who brutalized my jaw once. Dr. Scrivner. The minute I saw that nameplate on the door....*SHUDDER!*
But it didn't bring to mind any Bards, playwrights, or scribes, that's for sure.

Heather 5-17-2002 15:05

YES!!! My boss just complimented me on a letter I wrote informing our state correctional facility librarians of a controversial budget. She said I have a flair for writing. YES!!! I AM A WRITER!!!!! (*doing little Snoopy dance on TOP of doghouse!!!*) :-)

Um, Hi, everyone!!! I'm high...

Mel 5-17-2002 14:03

Sorry for not posting earlier. It's the last week before the finals and you know how teachers can be... I really wish I had more time to write right now but, homework's waiting as always. I just can't wait for summer.....
Till Niagara Falls!

Elaine 5-17-2002 11:44

sages and scriv'ners and scribes
oh my!


howard 5-17-2002 6:43



Heather 5-17-2002 6:14

TEEKAY, I absolutely adore that last line.
You should immortalize that somewhere non-internet, for safe-keeping!

A voice whispers, "Print it out.... Print it oooouuuuut!"

Heather (one more time ----sis boom bah) 5-17-2002 6:13

*ahem* Oh. Sorry. I forgot to add that I walked a lot too, where I wasn't looking. :oD

Heather 5-17-2002 6:11

If this is a pissing contest over whose childhood mode of transportation was the scariest (or crappiest)
I won't win, but I might place somewhere around 5th or 6th!

I had the all-attitude, banana-seated roll-bar-handled kill-yourself-at-any-speed warped frame bicycle. The spokes were mean and nasty, and bit my toes on occasion, when I felt the sudden need to stand on the front forks whilst heading downhill...
The seat liked to flip up and smack into anything flat (including me)
The handlebars could be trusted to give suddenly under weight on said downhill pass
The chain has often felt like eating kid hamburger.
It rattled. It belched rubber. It scared me.
I never did tame that thing.

Howard, an award???
Teek, I'm flabbergasted meself!

F*CK! There's that self-doubt opening up. I think the NB is my true safety net. If it wasn't for all of you.....


I refuse to think about the alternatives.

Heather 5-17-2002 6:09

I think we have a shoo-in for "best line of the year" award!
It's HEATHER's "and a map with a hole in the spot where you're standing."
No doubt about it!

Another good "tail" (no I didn't miss that) RANDALL!

All I had to ride when I was a kid was an English racing bike with two flat tires and a busted chain, and an old plow horse that didn't even have a name. I walked a lot, when I wasn't reading.

howard 5-16-2002 21:40


Teekay my friend....

"How tragic not to recognise the fact that common life is what gives birth to great art."

Without a doubt lady! Without a doubt!


Randall 5-16-2002 20:51



Howard...on rereading my post earlier in the week...about "impress" I realize something not intended crept in. We all write on the site for various reasons. I love to tell my hokey tales ...cause I have received some positive feed back from the beloved folks on this site.

As I love quotes...perhaps one by Edward Abbey is valid here...

"Like any writer, I'd rather be read than dead. Like any serious 'author' I'd rather be dead than not read at all."

I enjoy reading you guys tales and follow the interaction between varient personalities with glee. Though I don't often comment on what has been written I still enjoy the site!

I'm still chuckling over Mel's post yesterday!

Perhaps a short tail in the continuing saga of Bertha the Donkey.

The Spirits of Water Valley Cemetery

"And then one summer Darrel and I arrived for our summer stay to find Pa had acquired a two-wheel iron buggy from his friend, George Miller. I believe it was an early horse drawn cultivator, but was converted that summer to a donkey powered buggy. Pa had his harnesses from days of working with horses and mules stored in the barn. He gathered them together, reworked some, oiling or replacing defective leather straps on others. Pa located some good straight young trees and we cut two for staves. Later at home he attached them to the cart for supporting the harnesses. We pulled the wheels and Pa liberally greased the axles, attaching them with new pins. Everything was accomplished except painting which was not done, to the end our buggy remained a rusty red color. Finally all was ready, finding Bertha to introduce her to our new mode of transportation was our last obstacle.

Bertha the donkey was wandering through the pasture as all these preparations were made unaware her existence was to take a drastic change. She would roam free until we needed her, reluctantly allow herself to be caught. Sometimes this task alone could be a chore. When approaching we learned to hide the halter behind our back, walking nonchalantly by, if she saw it, the race was on. She was a sucker for corn shaken in a gallon tin bucket though. There were few times when she would not fall for the "old corn ploy." Once without corn we substituted small rocks and shook them in our bucket. She fell for this only once. And for several days we could not catch her without much difficulty. Pay back time.

I don't recall her expression as she was being placed in harness or while the buggy attached to her, but it was probably one of stubbornness. I don't believe she was singing the "Hallelujah Chorus." Probably sputtering in Donkey lingo. "What the...! Why this, is preposterous! You think I'm pulling that iron monster? No way!" If she had known what turmoil awaited in her future, a wagon load of corn wouldn't have enticed her. No prison wall would have slowed this panic-stricken donkey's headlong flight.

Bertha the Donkey had several very readable facial expressions.

Curiosity, "What's in it for me." Eyes wide, brow raised, head high, ears erect.
Stubbornness, "I'm not moving, period!" Brow furrowed, head down, ears turned to the side.
Preposterous, "I'm not pulling that iron monster again!" Galloping away!
Laughing, "Got you then didn't I?" Ears forward, eyes twinkling, head slowly nodding.
Sadness, "Is this all the corn I get? " Ears down, eyes downcast, head down, brow furrowed.
Anticipation, "Thank the stars were headed for the barn!" Prancing like a foal!
Extreme delight, "More corn bread, please." Eyes wide, ears up and forward, mouth agape, head high.
Resignation, "Damn... those kids are back again." Head shaking, ears flapping, eyes half-closed.

That first summer with our donkey powered buggy was when my brother and I first tasted the joys of mobility. We became so adapt at harnessing Bertha to our buggy it was accomplished in minutes. Our horizons expanded from solitary jaunts in the pasture to long excursions down dirt country lanes together. Our hunting also expanded, even if temporarily, when we began carrying our pellet rifle, or 22 Winchester rifle. Later though, Pa discouraged hunting or shooting from our buggy with Bertha. We finally gave up hunting altogether around her. With buggy or saddle. Bertha, when pulling the buggy, was fitted with blinders that made her look more toward the front than sideways. Consequently she was unaware when we were about to shoot and more prone to spook. One narrow escape when she nearly stampeded after we shot a rattlesnake was enough. Throwing me off backwards, Darrel was lucky in holding her from panic-stricken flight. Buggy hunting was over, score one for the reptiles.

Bertha was difficult to ride with saddle, nearly impossible when bareback. Her jolting trot sent bone and muscle spasms from "caboose" to loosening teeth in my head. Buggy riding was rough, but a hell of a lot better than riding bareback. Pasture riding in an iron wheel buggy didn't work though, it was too wide, prone to hang up between trees. Iron wheels running over sandstone rocks or fallen logs will throw unwary boy or boys right off. Young boys in violent contact with rocks and thorns, landing on sensitive body parts will guarantee a delayed manhood. So we hit the dirt lanes often riding for miles. Or until Bertha stopped."

Hope you liked it!


Randall 5-16-2002 20:44


This pretty much sucks, and that's by my own admission, and I don't really feel this way anyway, but it's my contribution to shorty night.
Because I am perfectly happy listening for infant to awake and to wipe dirty faces, maybe not so much to clean up the table, but needs must and somnebody's gotta do it.

It's not really self doubt, it's probably more like self delusion, but if we twist it around a bit and find a loophole, I should be able to make it fit.

The Deluded Scribe:

How hard to access the inner workings of the soul, when one ear must stay poised for the sound of an infant waking.

How tedious that hands longing only to write must scrape refuse from the dinner table, wipe dirty faces.

How wretched that a mind wishing only to delve into it’s own fantastic creations must mingle with those of the everyday.

How I could only,………..
would only,……….
if only.

How tragic not to recognise the fact that common life is what gives birth to great art.

Teekay 5-16-2002 20:14


MEL: Methinks if we should grab hold of HEATHER's ankle and hold on for all we're worth, we may just find a way out of this bog hole.

Teekay 5-16-2002 20:01


HEATHER: I am TOTALLY impressed!

Teekay 5-16-2002 19:57

That's right folks, she does it for the challenge!

What kind of a crazy bozo is she?

I hate those thoughts that read something like this:

--If Mount Everest were a story, I've only written the foothills

--If the Nile was a novel, I'd be floating on a raft, out in the middle, with muskrats gnawing on the rope


Fill in the blank

Then laugh good and loud at ourselves.

We're writing for the love of it.
Just like adventure. There will be scraped knees and missing wallets, burnt hotel rooms (uh, did I say that?)
and a map with a hole in the spot where you're standing - feeling mighty lost under such a grand vista
...and years later you will tell your grandchildren that it was the most fantastic trip you ever took

And you've written the books to prove it. :o)

Heather 5-16-2002 19:29

Carol, from what I know of lupus, it has many many symptoms in common with other conditions. What you now call denial was very useful in earlier years - it moved you to seek out other explanations, other possibilities. I wouldn't call that stupid.
((((MORE HUGS))))

Mel - It might be more efficient to drill through the bottom of said crater and bubble up somewhere new!
Then again, we are talking the business of writing - I don't think I've ever seen the word 'efficient' applied to it, unless we're talking speed typing office memos... and I've never seen one of those in hardcover!

Back to the pacing,
the scribbled notes on the bedside in stringy, blobby PaperMate good-for-very-little, last-resort pen;
the whispering to myself while doing other duties,
the waking dream of a story that exists only on a few disks, scads of paper, and in notebooks
If it weren't for the essences of my characters pounding on the inside of my skull to get out,

I'd probably only do it for a thrill.

Some thrill!

Heather 5-16-2002 19:22

Hi All :)

Howard - I'm glad you left your post there. Not only does it sum up my own feelings far too well, but it fits in well with this weeks theme. :)

I look at some of the stuff I've written and wonder about the person who wrote it. Its great stuff. Then there are the others ... the one's I cringe inwardly at, knowing that I wrote them. Not only are they bad, but they also break the rules of good writing. A novel of 13,000 words written in a very passive voice -- how terrible! Why didn't I see that when I was spending all that time writing it?? There's no decent plot, just conflicts without character growth. Argh! And there are others .... the one that is good only to a point. The male character has no character, no motivation, no defined, complex conflict. And there the story sits. And sits. It would only need a tweak to get it fully into place, but I don't know what to tweak to twitch. So it sits in a drawer, waiting for the day of inspiration while I work on something else.

I try very hard to remind myself that I have only been writing seriously (or semi-seriously if you wish) for four years. In the grand scope of things, I'm an apprentice, I'm still practicing. But that doesn't ease those feelings of doubt, of unworthiness.

I suspect that no matter how much any person puts on the brave, positive face in life, the self-doubt is always a shadowy fog whispering in the back of one's mind. Now, I'm going to push that fog back where it belongs and see what I can accomplish today.

Heather - I haven't been wondering about the lupus these past 11 years, I've been "denying" it. Now I'll just have to see how stupid that denial has been.

Carol 5-16-2002 17:22

That wasn't very impressive -- try it again!

howard Texas!Link 5-16-2002 13:42

RANDALL -- I really am impressed!

howard 5-16-2002 13:41


G'Morning,ALL! I'm still half asleep but what the heck, my fingers are awake, sort of...

HOWARD!!! Have you been walking around in my lazy, not-sure-I'm-worth-much rut??!! ;-] HEATHER too???!!! And TEEKAY???How many more are lurking down here? That's it, folks. No more room down here! We gotta team up and form some kind of ladder outta here!!! Who's first??? uh...Randall, send BERTHA the DONKEY down here quick! :-)

Hi to CAROL, JERRY, RHODA, VIV... and anyone else lurking on the rim of this what-can-I-write-that's-worth-it crater!

I need more sleep... wake me up when it's time for my bus home so I don't miss the commuter's nap! zzzzzzzzz

Mel 5-16-2002 8:06

Are ya impressed? *Giggle*

Actually, I'm not. I'm up at 5 am. *swatting myself with a switch*


Heather 5-16-2002 4:49

Howard~~ Are you sure you weren't reading my mind at some point?

Oh, there is a certain nonchalance that comes with having the right ingredients, but it is mostly
Fear dressed up as
Confidence Come For Dinner.
Dessert is knowing I can write, but there is always some bakery doing it better.
Talent isn't going anywhere - - It walks about inside my head, inside my hands
Should I shape it?
Should I hold it a little longer before
Letting go?
What could I create if the taste of pure thought
didn't blend and fade away so fast? If I trained my mind
To hone, to beat off the chaff
And like wrapping it in celophane,
take Inspiration's photograph?
I look at the recipe book
and the pages are wrinkled - - scribbles on the margins
I can't find directions anywhere.

If that makes absolutely no sense,
I blame the dog.


(Viv, don't know how that happened, but your photograph/recipe book arrived in my mind, and I couldn't shake that line!)

Ink all you got,

Heather 5-16-2002 4:47


CAROL: ((((((((((((((((((((((((((((HUGS)))))))))))))))))))))))

Teekay 5-16-2002 4:02


HOWARD: Ohhhhh, THAT impress post. Yeah, well I read that post.
I thought I'd missed something juicy, DAGNABBIT!

Speaking of lazy, is there anything more uninspiring and tedious than typing up and tidying up submissions once returned and then sending them on their merry way again.
Maybe, but not too much, me reckons.

Back to it.

Teekay 5-16-2002 3:56

TEEKAY -- that "impress" post was mine, a few weeks ago, and now that I look back at it, I think it didn't really come out the way I intended. Here's what I said:

"I guess we're veterans, okay, but I'm not sure it's writing that we're veterans at... we manage to have fun here, and I think we inspire one another at times, to greater heights, as we try to amuse/impress one another. The only problem is that some of us are more easily amuse/impressed, and the rest of us get big heads when they go Oooooohh! Ahhhhh! Actually, writing comes easier to some than to others. But that actually makes the "others" better writers, because they get more serious about it than the "some." And writing can be very serious stuff."

I meant nothing derogatory with the use of "impress," -- it was actually meant to be rather self-deprecatory. Especially the part about writing coming easier to some. That's one of my problems -- always has been. Some things come easy for me, and as a result, I don't/haven't taken them as seriously as I should, and haven't developed them fully. And sometimes I get the feeling that I'm all hollow inside, with nothing of substance to show. Sure, some of the stuff I write is good. But deep down I know that if I worked at it, some of it could be much better. But I don't, because I'm basically lazy, and find it hard to change. Or to finish anything.
On the other hand, everyone else here works hard to continue to develop and use their talent, and I see them improving every time they post something new. And I feel like I've missed the boat somewhere. But it's my own fault, and I know it. What I'm trying to learn is how to get out of this rut!

Whew! Dunno why that went where it did, but I'll leave it there - maybe it'll be useful somehow.

howard 5-15-2002 23:40

Carol - really sorry to hear of your recent diagnosis... you seem very up and positive about everything. What a hard diagnosis to come by, too. 11 years you've been wondering???
I think you are handling it very well, and that spirit is what will make all the difference. ((((HUGS)))))

Heather 5-15-2002 22:09


Hi gang!

Teekay...the post on "impress" was several weeks ago. I am very slow, I tell my wife I ponder things for a while. She nods with chagrin. "You and 20 million other guys! Like now you're pondering on when to mow the yard!"

Mel...loved the post on just slightly off speech blunders! Many thanks for the kudos from Carol, Howard and Viv on Bertha the Donkey. And with that in mind.....


"In 1959 or 1960 our grandfather, Eckert Kiser purchased a young, highly intelligent, female Mexican donkey. Ah, from Ken Bode, of Ponotoc though I'm not sure if his name is spelled correctly. She was black with a white belly, white circles around black eyes, and a white muzzle. One ear was cropped a couple of inches, probably for identification purposes. Darrel and I fell in love with her instantly. After the initial shock at such a unusual pet we were given the opportunity of naming her. With unimaginable logic we named her after our grandmother ... Bertha Baxter Kiser. This stunt of naming her after our grandmother is still causing me problems. In penning these stories I have to be careful to keep the correct Bertha (Donkey) separate from Bertha (Grandmother) tales.

There are numerous discussions and questions I would like to have with my deceased grandmother today. Surely heading the list would be this one. "By the way Ma-Maw, what did you think when we named our donkey after you?"

Somewhere, in donkey paradise wandering through knee-deep green grass, ripe peach and plum trees this animal wears a gold banner that proclaims "Well done, Bertha." For several years Bertha the donkey was our constant companion. We put Pa's horse saddle on her and rode throughout the countryside, or rode bareback with just a saddle blanket and halter.

Bertha was certainly not an agreeable creature sometimes. I guess even donkeys have bad days. Numerous times at a full gallop, when we could get her to that point, the inscrutable Donkey brain would signal "Emergency, FULL STOP!!!" Planting both front feet firmly, then lowering her head to the ground she would slide saddle, boys and all over her head. Well boys anyway, usually the saddle ended somewhere on her neck. Once this exploit was completed if we had neglected to hold the reins, a long walk home would find her at the barn lot gate waiting patiently to be fed (beloved corn) and curried (hair brushed). As we limped in, footsore and disgusted Bertha would stare serenely at us, innocent as a lamb. Completely unruffled as if nothing had happened. It certainly wasn't her fault if young boys couldn't hold on! If we didn't immediately feed her corn, in reprisal she would stand at the lot gate and bray continuously.

Another maneuver often used when we were aboard was to run under a low hanging limb therefore dragging us off. Once when Darrel and I were both aboard, she selected an especially dense blackjack oak tree for this ploy. We only escaped disaster by one of us leaning all the way forwards, the other leaning all the way back. Unable to move eventually we both fell off sideways laughing as she would not move forward or backwards. If a topside drag off would not work, she would walk as close to a fence or tree to drag our leg against it. When she felt a leg being lifted, to clear an obstacle, several quick running bucks would follow trying to dislodge the rider or riders.

I just had a quick thought. Do you thing her behavior could have been influenced by donkey PMS? Or maybe just the actions of two rowdy preteen boys? Probably the latter I would think. Still, in today's environment of fixing blame and seeking reason behind action, who knows? Still, life with Bertha the donkey was a game and all three of us participated, Darrel, Randall and Bertha. I'm sure she enjoyed this interaction. After a particular nasty spill one day, watching her racing home, I heard her braying, laughing at our situation. Donkeys are masters at avoiding labor for humans. At least Bertha was, her bag of tricks was never empty. Now with our grandpa her actions were more restrained, as he would accept no foolishness. Pa cautioned us to never strike her around her head, he related a swat across the buttocks with our quirt would sufficiently motivate her.

One morning when putting a saddle on her somehow a left front hoof, (accidentally I'm sure) settled on my boot. That was painful enough, but then I felt her beginning to shift her weight to bring more pressure to bear! A knee brought firmly into her abdomen, and she moved her hoof. But, ever so slowly! She never attempted to bite us as some donkeys would, her resistance was more passive. Moving rapidly to one side when we lifted the saddle, causing it to fall on the ground. Or innocently trying to jostle us into a barn wall or tree or fence with her body. Shaking her head from side to side or refusing to open her mouth for the harness was a good delaying tactic. Balking was another when finally saddled and bridled. Once to our joy actually assuming that famous donkey demonstration of sitting oh her backside, refusing to move. Darrel and I foiled this protest by pouring corn into a nearby feed trough, then ignoring her. Shortly she was up, wandering nonchalantly over nosing around the trough, finally giving in allowing us to ride. Outrageous bribery on our part! Pa cautioned us early in our relationship to stay clear of her stern as the expression, "Can kick like a mule," certainly applied to this donkey! (Sorry... couldn't resist that comment.)

Initially positioning Pa's saddle did not proceed smoothly with Bertha, it seemed we could never cinch it tight and it would slip sideways, or forward. Pa told us that as we were tightening the cinch strap she would expand her stomach, gulping as much air as possible. This caused the saddle to slip sideways when she later exhaled, usually just as we cleared the barn yard gate. To eliminate this ruse we could wait her out (she had to breathe sometime) or if impatient to ride a firm nudge of knee into her abdomen and she would exhale with a loud whoosh....then move rapidly sideways to pin us against the barn wall."

I'll post additional "Bertha the Donkey" stories as the week wears on. I used Ken Bode's real name and the small town of Ponotoc lies between Brady and Llano.

Night all


Randall 5-15-2002 21:06


RANDALL: Loved the story. Easy to read, funny, with a real homey air. I love stories like that.

Be well all.

Teekay 5-15-2002 19:50

Hi All :)

Where to start, where to start??

Well, of course - first a late Happy Birthday to Heather! No, it's not weird to enjoy being 31. 31 is great. You finally feel like you've gained enough knowledge and wisdom to be taken seriously when you give advice. Well, that's how I felt about it anyways. Actual age numbers don't seem to matter to much - until the body starts telling you you abused it too much when you were young.

Eddie -- congrats on the publication and for writing such an interesting piece of flash. I really enjoyed reading it. I marked the site for future investigation and possible submissions of my own. It looks promising. :)

Viv - I'm sorry about your hubby. Sounds like you got some good ideas on helping him out though and that's the key to everything. My hubby being pretty good too about my current problems. A bit demanding on my taking care of myself, but I guess I can't complain since I've used the same tactics on him in the past. He learned well. heheheh

Yesterday was a rough day for me since hubby had his VA appointment and it is a 4 hour ride one way. It ends up being a 12 hour day between the travel, the appointments and stopping to eat. Some of my health problems complained about it all, but not as bad as I thought. I made sure I got enough sleep ahead of time to offset the simple stress of the day.

Randall -- can I yell at you when hubby tells me I can't have a donkey??? hehehehe Well told story and so entertaining that I want one of my own now!

I finally thought of the next scene to write for my current story, so I'm off. With the current health problems and not knowing what all it going on yet, it's been harder for me to stay focused on my writing. Big bummer. So for now, I'll just take what I can when I can and hope for the best.

Carol 5-15-2002 17:55

Howard - good luck on the math. I considered myself so very lucky when I attended college back in the early 90's. Computers were still relatively new, (Pentium's were just introduced) so to encourage students to explore computers, the powers that be declared that in lew of math and science, student's could take computer classes. Now I can add two and two to come up with four, but after that it's all a blur to me. I took all the computer classes I could fit in my schedule and avoided the horror of math, algebra and calculus. Had they not had that policy (which was eliminated the year I graduated) I would never have been able to maintain my straight 4.0 GPA over my entire college experience. (A feat never before or since accomplished by anyone in the history of the legal assistant program at the University of North Dakota).

Jerry 5-15-2002 14:18


I don't mean to meddle, but can't your husband get emergency care? If his blood pressure is high enough, he is risking fall worse things than blindness in one eye. If his diastolic is running anywhere from 115-120 or over, he should go to the hospital if nowhere else. If he has to threaten a law suit, he has to get help. I don't know how things are in Japan, but there must be a way that people can get the immediate care they need.

Rhoda 5-15-2002 14:16


I'm praying for your husband. High blood pressure is a bane in our family. My father has it, my mother had it, my oldest brother has it, and I have had run ins with it both in pregnancy and stressful times. You just continue to take care of him. I am sure there is nothing about the condition I can tell you because of your husband's experience, but eating lots and lots of fruit helps. Has your husband tried taking Calcium and Magnesium? Does he need a different medication? Anyway he needs medical help, and I can't believe that the doctors would blow him off this way.

Rhoda 5-15-2002 14:09


Hi, You-ALL, every one of you!!! :-) Just received this great list of church typos, my addition to the recent religious discussions:

"Thank God for church ladies with typewriters. These sentences actually appeared in church bulletins or were announced in church services:

• Bertha Belch, a missionary from Africa, will be speaking tonight at Calvary Methodist. Come hear Bertha Belch all the way from Africa.

• Announcement in a church bulletin for a national PRAYER FASTING Conference "The cost for attending the Fasting and Prayer conference includes meals."

• The sermon this morning: "Jesus Walks on the Water." The sermon tonight: "Searching for Jesus."

• Our youth basketball team is back in action Wednesday at 8 PM in the recreation hall. Come out and watch us kill Christ the King.

• "Ladies, don't forget the rummage sale. It's a chance to get rid of those things not worth keeping around the house. Don't forget your husbands."

• The peacemaking meeting scheduled for today has been canceled due to a conflict.

• Remember in prayer the many who are sick of our community.

• Smile at someone who is hard to love. Say "hell" oto someone who doesn’t care much about you.

• Don't let worry kill you off let the Church help.

• Miss Charlene Mason sang "I will not pass this way again," giving obvious pleasure to the congregation.

• For those of you who have children, and don't know it, we have a nursery downstairs.

• Next Thursday there will be tryouts for the choir. They need all the help they can get.

• Barbara remains in the hospital and needs blood donors for more transfusions. She is also having trouble sleeping and requests tapes of Pastor Jack's sermons.

• During the absence of our Pastor, we enjoyed the rare privilege of hearing a good sermon when J.F. Stubbs supplied our pulpit.

• The Rector will preach his farewell message after which the choir will sing "Break Forth into Joy."

• Irving Benson and Jessie Carter were married on October 24 in the church. So ends a friendship that began in their school days.

• A bean supper will be held on Tuesday evening in the church hall. Music will follow.

• At the evening service tonight, the sermon topic will be "What is Hell?" Come early and listen to our choir practice.

• Eight new choir robes are currently needed, due to the addition of several new members and to the deterioration of some older ones.

• The Lutheran men's group will meet at 6 P.M.. Steak, mashed potatoes, green beans, bread and dessert will be served for a nominal feel.

• Please place your donation in the envelope along with the deceased person you want remembered.

• Potluck supper Sunday at 5:00 P.M. prayer and medication to follow.

• The ladies of the Church have cast off clothing of every kind. They may be seen in the basement on Friday afternoon.

• This evening at 7 P.M. there will be a hymn sing in the park across from the Church. Bring a blanket and come prepared to sin.

• Ladies Bible Study will be held Thursday morning at 10. All ladies are invited to lunch in the Fellowship Hall after the B.S. is done.

• The pastor would appreciate it if the ladies of the congregation would lend him their electric girdles for the pancake breakfast next Sunday.

• Low Self Esteem Support Group will meet Thursday at 7 PM. Please use the back door.

• The eighth graders will be presenting Shakespeare's Hamlet in the Church basement Friday at 7 PM.The Congregation is invited to attend this tragedy.

• Weight Watchers will meet at 7 PM at the First Presbyterian Church. Please use large double door at the side entrance.

• Mrs. Johnson will be entering the hospital this week for testes.

• The Associate Minister unveiled the church's new tithing campaign slogan last Sunday "I Upped My Pledge, Up Yours."

• Our next song is "Angels We Have Heard Get High."

I'm still giggling!


RHODA: SO GLAD your little guy is okay! (((HUGS))) for the whole family.

AND EVERYONE ELSE: Celebrate life!!! Enjoy every moment. Write your passion into paragraphs - today. There's someone somewhere needing to read it! I has spokened. Great day, you-all! :-]

Mel 5-15-2002 12:25

Howard: I agree with you..."sesame seeds" and double dactyls are a lot more interesting than math right now. It's not the actual Algebra I that is interesting. That's just one of those building block skills. It's like learning to add and subtract...boring, dry, dull and doesn't make rhyme nor reason but you learn to do it. Then you get through algebra two, and calculus and suddenly you can do and understand things on a whole new level. Not like I have ever reached that level but I've talked with those that have. They can show me weird strange formulas for why things happen. It's fun to talk to those people. They know things about patterns that reoccur and can figure out something that is going to happen. They can even gamble successfully. Now that's a skill every writer could use. That plus being able to see more and understand it. DON'T GIVE UP! There's magic on the way. All you have to have is the guts to get knocked over and come back at it again and again. (It took my daughter twice to get through calculus and it looks like Differential equations is going to hook her back again as well.)

Plus, I'm going to need help when I try this. I need it explained by an ENGLISH type person...not a math type person.

Tina: That reminds me. I missed my flight because I broke my ribs. Bummer, but I'll try again later. I did get into a learn to ride a motorcycle class. That helps some...but I still can't wait to get up in the air. I'm disgusted with myself. I missed a great chance to fly. Now I have to wait until they offer the darned class again. Either that or I can go to Thailand and try it on vacation if we get to stay here past July 15th. It's riskier in Thailand because they land on this really rusty platform in their bare feet. I wanted to do it in safe rule-bound Japan.

Rhoda: Just the ticket! I'd have wanted to enjoy life all I could by eating breakfast at McDonalds myself if I'd nearly died. He's already doing the right thing..enjoying every minute. You let him do it too. A great celebration of his being alive. That shows him he's cared for and loved. He won't forget! I hope you get your house soon. I think though, that your house sounds warm and comforting in spite of this moving deal.

I'm going to do the celebrate life with my husband tomorrow. He seems to be going blind in one eye due to his high blood pressure. It came up suddenly and he's at a critical point. We can't get him to a doctor because they are full scheduled until the end of the month. I'm a little frantic about that because I'm picturing bad things. Instead of freaking out, he's coming home for stress breaks and just lying down. I took a page from Heather's notebook and gave him a vanilla massage. Well, hopefully it helped the blood pressure but if it didn't, it sent him back to work a happier person than when he came home. May as well settle back and enjoy our five minutes but when he leaves I'm back on the phone screaming and saying dirty things about full up appointment books. I'm also cussing the folks that shoot up his blood pressure. What a load of ....uh can I blame tourettes syndrome for what I'm going to holler next? Nope. Welllllll, let's do it the notebook way F*&%#ks! (Kicks the wall mentally!)
There, done with the tantrum...off to bed!

Viv 5-15-2002 10:15

Viv - Thanks, but mine is a chronic thing, it's a very long story but to make it short, about 9 years ago I slipped on the ice. Three major surgeries latter, I was told that while my surgeon did everything that he could to correct the damage, there are some things that you just can't fix. So I put up with it, and when it gets bad I complain like hell, most of the time I simply take my pills and shut up, as complaining doesn't do any good anyhow.

Guess it's all part of aging too. What does tick me off just a bit is when folks know about it, but forget and expect me to be able to do things that are beyond my ability, then seem disappointed when I decline.

I guess all those folks out there that fake a bad back in the interest of scaming the public or some store out of their hard earned money have made it tough for those of us who are indeed disabled. Oh I get the good parking places and a free fishing license, and Social Security and Workers Comp give me enough money to get by on, but it's not a great life.

This notebook keeps me interested in life, in writing and visiting back and forth with all here keeps me in touch with the life I gave up when the surgeon did what ever it was he did way back when.

Jerry 5-15-2002 0:49


Thank you for your kind thoughts and your hugs. Daniel seems his old self today. I spoiled him rotten. He said he wanted breakfast at McDonalds, and that was what he got. He wanted to go out for lunch and supper, and he did. In the meantime he had unlimited time to play Nintendo 64 and Game Boy. Needless to say, I showered him with hugs. Tomorrow he will go back to school and face the same limitations he normally does. My realtor called and said she would show the house tonight at 6:00, so I kept the boys home from karate and straightened up the house. After supper all four of us had a quiet evening enjoying each other's company. It was wonderful and when my husband is with us again during the week, it will be better still.

Frank is going to put an offer on a house tomorrow. I hope this one works out. We shall just have to wait and see.

Rhoda 5-14-2002 23:22

RANDALL -- Enjoy it? I loved it! And I'm impressed! :-) Never had a donkey, just a few chickens and the odd milk goat or two. Had a billygoat that smelled so bad we had to keep him tied out behind the barn.

VIV -- Thanks for the words of encouragement, but I'm convinced that the real reason I don't do well at math is just because I don't like the stuff! I'd much rather play with words than numbers. Dunno about genius, either -- if I'm so dang smart, why ain't I rich? One of these days I'm gonna try out for JEOPARDY! and it would be just my luck to make it, and get to final jeopardy and the answer would be something like "forty-two!" And I'd try to factor it. And come up with a+b over the hypothalmus is equal to the square root of the train that left first. Unless there was a head wind.
Naw, gimme a double-dactyl any day! Higgledy-Piggledies are fun! Like:

Ronald McDonald he
Went to a nudie beach
Just to have fun.
Though incognito they
still recognized him
because of the sesame
seeds on his bun!

(I guess you hadda be there...)

howard 5-14-2002 22:44

Thank you Randall! :- ) It did the trick! I'm smiling!

Viv 5-14-2002 22:18


RANDALL: I missed the post about writing to impress others. How far back was it?

Haven't read the latestest posts, but will.

Teekay 5-14-2002 22:14


Evening all...and happy birthday Heather.

A post several weeks ago indicated that some on the notebook wrote to impress others. Not guilty says I. I write my stories to get you to, at least, smile. :-) This is from the first full length book I ever penned! It deals with the summers I spent with my brother on our grandparents place in Mason County. A golden time for sure. In 1961 my grandfather "Pa" bought us a small Mexican burro... and with pre-teen logic we named her after our grandmother, Bertha or Ma-Maw!


Bertha the Donkey loved fresh biscuits and fried cornbread. After scenting the aroma of either cooking she would shortly arrive, braying at Ma-Maw's yard gate. Someone would let her in and she would shortly arrive at the back screen door. Our grandparents didn't mind us letting her roam the yard as long as she didn't eat the fruit trees, eat the flowers, eat the garden, quarrel with Rusty, step on the cats, step on the flowers, step on the garden and spread donkey dung around. Or make a general nuisance of herself. In other words she was only allowed in under supervision. Sounds a lot like my life. Under supervision.

During the summer of 1971 shortly before Pa died, my California cousin Loybelle, with her two children Tim and Tina were visiting. Tim and Tina were having a fine time on the farm with Ma-Maw and Pa. I saddled Bertha and led them on rides around their yard. Later though, they guided themselves as Bertha was gentle around young children. Saving that evil gleam in her eye for Darrel and I. They were only six or seven (I'm not sure,) but Tim was the oldest. Early one morning I was sitting at the kitchen table with Loy and my grandparents talking. Bertha, ever vigilant when it came to breakfast biscuits was standing at the back yard gate braying for entrance. If we were trying to find her for riding or plowing she would be it the furthest corner of the place. I let her in, but didn't give her then what she was asking for ... fresh biscuits.

From experience I knew which avenue she would pursue for biscuits. Knowing Tim and Tina were still asleep, I thought it would be fun to give them a country reveille. If you have never heard a donkey bray one great sound of rural living has passed you by. Bertha would start low down... increase in volume to full throat, braying when she exhaled, whistling on the intake, then end in a halting, gasping, snorting, seemingly choking finale. The whole process could last a minute or longer and be loud enough to raise the dead. As I suspected within seconds of my re-entering the home, Bertha was on the back steps, white whiskered muzzle pressing the screen door. Ears erect, black eyes blazing, alerted, indignation on her face. "No biscuits? What the... ! I know you're eating biscuits in there. I can smell you know!"

What followed was a beautifully orchestrated, reverberating bray full of pleading, "Please, please, please." Demanding, "I want, I want, I want." Impatience, "Right now, not later... now!" Outrage, "Or else... I'm coming right through this door!" All of this emotional donkey pleading resonated throughout Ma-Maw's house. In a flash Tim and Tina were standing by their mother's side, fully awake. Being children their rude awaking was quickly forgotten. They hand fed Bertha biscuits as she stood on the porch while I held the screen door open.

Bertha one hot, afternoon was carrying Tim and Tina bareback riding around the yard while we sat in tree shaded chairs enjoying a summer afternoon. I heard a commotion around the corner. Quickly investigating I found Bertha playing one of her tricks. Standing under a low hanging plum tree with the children laying flat down across her back refusing to move she was the picture of innocence. Having been in that position before, I had a "Quick word" with her... about being polite toward guests, then the children resumed their ride. I returned to my seat talking with Loy when Bertha came up behind me with the children aboard. She stood patiently for a few seconds, breathing heavily, then snorted down my neck knocking my hat off. Again, she had the final say, answering my "Quick word" in kind!

Donkeys are sometimes allowed to range with sheep or goat herds as they are excellent watchdogs, protecting the herd against predators. Watchdonkey? Bertha was no different, she was very protective of her turf. Pa fabricated a leg chain to slow her as she began to chase young calves just born, or anything else for that matter. This chain, four feet long, was attached with a leather strap to a front hoof. It would not allow her to run at anything for very long. Pa was repairing fence one day, with Bertha nearby, when he noticed her chain was missing, a frequent occurrence. He made a mental note to catch her soon as possible and attach another. Shortly after this Bertha started running across a nearby field chasing some animal. Pa said it took him a minute to identify what her objective could be, then realized she was chasing a young deer fawn. Running for it's life. This fawn was staying ahead of her, but just barely.

Pa said the fawn would often look over it's shoulder, then run even faster as Bertha was right on its tail! He remarked that it was a long chase stretching across the quite lengthy field. During the chase Bertha started braying, probably in frustration. This vocal assault added to a physical one enabled the distressed fawn to reach for a higher gear and escape. I can visualize the winded fawn reporting to mother doe later that night "You'll never believe what happened to me today! That old flea bitten donkey on Bertha Kiser's place tried to bite me!"

Hope you enjoyed it...


Randall 5-14-2002 21:22

Howard: How perfect for the week's theme...self doubt. You already wrote exactly the situation that really can cause a person to doubt himself. Got some words of wisdom for you that I want you to pass along to me when the time comes: YOU ARE INEXPERIENCED AT MATH. You obviously are a genius because I read what you write. You are also a left-brained type person because you can create poetry that has complex metrical structure. That means you can do math, it's not genetic. You are simply inexperienced and like all college classes, this one is moving at a high rate of speed. Slow down. Figure you can do it once you get the experience. First time through you take these math classes for experience, the second time you take them for credit. When your GPA goes down you simply pad it with your electives that you do well. Ie: Match that math class with two classes (English and History). Then keep marching on doing the same thing for every class. This is how my daughter survived calculus II and III and differential equations. It's also the reason I teach Algebra I for three years before I put my child in a school where she earns a grade for credit. Algebra I and II are the hardest concepts to grasp for anyone. You need a lot of time thinking like this and then you can do it. I know this because it took me a looooong time to pass required Math the first time around and an Indian graduate student helped me through. I have to do it again to get into teaching in the states...so you are going to copy and paste this and send it to me when I write in complaining. I'm going to feel a lot of self doubt after looking at 80% of the problems and having absolutely no idea how to solve them. Big changes are coming for us too and I really want to teach people in America too. I can't stop teaching...I love it as much or even better than writing. (Although there are days....) I know you feel the same.

What I think is the best teachers aren't the smartest ones...it's the ones who have experience with self doubt, take time to learn, but best of all learn how to learn and where something is difficult to understand. I thank God that I'm not the fastest and smartest person. I know what it is to struggle to understand things and I can help others doing the same. That's what you are getting right now...probably in a much smaller dose than I get...experience in how to teach this subject a heck of a lot better than that instructor is teaching you!

Wow MARY! Once again you've given us all a wonderful topic. You'd never be fired. You do this too well.

Jerry: I hope your back is better. We call that a case of housewives back in our family because it usually happens when you tuck in a bedsheet. Don't let it get you down. Happens to all humans at one time or another. I broke two ribs last week falling against a curb. Now that was graceful! I just fell wrong...crash and crack. Now I'm double dosing some of the biggest calcium tablets you ever saw and avoiding laughing.

Rhoda: What a beautiful attitude you show in your letter about what happened to your son. That was a horrible incident showing the worst of those children, yet you realized it was a stupid mistake on their part. You handle those playground problems well. I'm so sorry it happened.
Uh oh, someone's in the house....repairman? Husband? Gotta run

Viv 5-14-2002 21:06


What a great Mother's Day you had! You didn't lose your son.

I think this will haunt you for quite some time.

I pray you find the peace you had just before it happend real soon.

Debra 5-14-2002 20:11


By the way, what was wrong with your galley? It's all electronic. All they do is feed it exactly as you have it into their book format. It comes out in a book format.

They did whatever I asked as soon as I asked.

As far as your material goes, it's the nature of the busniess for lots of agents and publishers to not send back material. Check any agent's ad and you will see you won't get your stuff back.

Any new publisher you want to work with shouldn't hold it against you that someone has your work in disk form.

Debra 5-14-2002 20:07


RHODA: (((((((((((((((HUGS)))))))))))))))) to you. What a very scary feeling.
Don't focus on the fact that you may have lost him though, focus on the fact that you didn't.
In a way it reminds me of when my daughter almost crashed the car.
They were unharmed, shaken badly, but for a distance of 6 inches (my husband went back and measured the tyre tracks later) it could have been a whole different matter.
To be honest, I was thankful that it had happened. It was a lesson learned that hopefully will serve her well at some other time.
((((((((((((((((((((((((((((HUGS)))))))))))))))))))))))) to your son as well, poor little mite.

BONITA: Bummer!! But what DEBRA said makes sense to me. Why can't you go to another publisher? You do have copies of the discs, right?
Just because the guys won't send them back, doesn't mean they have any rights to use them, or even any intention of doing so.
Good luck with it all.


Teekay 5-14-2002 20:04


I just had my second book published by 1stbooks Libary.

I had a great experience with them. As far as the copyright goes, it depends on who you ask to the protection.

It changed years ago that as soon as something was on paper with your name on it, you owned it. I sent my stuff to U.S Library of Congress myself. Also, I know that they print in Tennessee. I can't imagine the cost of printing books in another country and sending them back here to sell, especially when you figure Pod sometimes means one book at a time.

I just got my copies in five business days. Also, they work with Ingram. They are biggest distributor in the country.

Their contract states that you can end your business ties with them at any time. It doens't say you will get your money back. The disks are just plastic. The material is still yours.

For $30.00 you can send it to the US Library of Congress and you won't have to worry. Other countries do have to honor that copyright or we would have chaos all around the world.

No one would be able to sell their products globally because it would be stolen just outside the borders. That doesn't happen.

Debra 5-14-2002 19:23

Ah, I should mention that I am not a 'panicker'; the cause of Hailey's panic is so far unknown.

Heather 5-14-2002 17:48

Perhaps, Howard, it is a learned response?
My daughter panics at the beginning of every single test, no matter how well she knows the material. Panic = brain shut off.

Heather 5-14-2002 17:47

Yes, it's good to hear your son is okay, Rhoda -- things like that can happen so quickly. Thank God he's okay.

howard 5-14-2002 17:03

Well, I just got home from taking my math final. That's it - I have confirmed that I am not a math person. It took me all of 10 minutes to do the questions that I knew how to answer, and after staring at the other 80% of the test without the foggiest notion what was being asked, I turned it in and left the building. Dunno if I poste this before or not, but I think my aversion is genetic. Anyway, here's a little play on words:

Why does my mind shut down when I do math?
What makes my head turn solid, like a rock?
What cause would turn my thoughts from logic's path?
Is it genetic, say, a Mendel block?

howard 5-14-2002 17:02

OMgoodness, Rhoda! I just read your most recent post. Thank GOD he's all right.
I think keeping him home for a little while is a good idea.
He'll need you by his side. He may have claustrophobia or nightmares - you did the right thing.
And you are right; we can't possibly be at our childrens' sides 24/7. Try not to beat yourself up about it.
((((HUGS))))))) for both you and your sons.

Heather 5-14-2002 15:30

Thanks everyone, for the birthday wishes!!
Rhoda, thank you. Perhaps it is because I've slept less than most adults in the past 8 years? ;oD

Last night at work I found new angles and approaches to past scenes that I've written for Symphony. With less tweaking than one might think, things will be positively harmonized!
Not far to go until chapter 8 commences. With a month solid away from writing, I'm getting back into the game!
Now if only I could remember where I left that outline...

Heather 5-14-2002 15:26

Hi y'all just a quick HIIII!!! and a HAPPY BIRTHDAY HEATHER!!! and CONGRATS EDDIE and another HELLO for MARY!!!! Did I miss anything or anyone? I can't launch myself into religious conversations right now because bell's about to ring! Luv y'all!
Till Niagara Falls!

Elaine 5-14-2002 12:33

CHRISTI: ((((((((hugs))))))) right back atcha.

Thanks to all of you who checked out that site I built. It was definitely a learning experience.

MARY: Hi there. :)

I'm here, kinda, guys. Just been incredibly busy. Had a big presentation for work today. The weeks ought to slow down for a little while now.

I'll check back in later.

Hallee 5-14-2002 12:09


My friend was not such a zero. He just could not reconcile the culture he chose to live in to the one he grew up in, and he was in terrible torment. He was never deliberately cruel or arrogant. In many respects he was very kind. Even though I was naive and foolish at the age of twenty-two, I think even then I could have spotted a creep when I saw one.

I can attest personally that many Arabs are very good people, and in some ways superior to some Americans I have known. They are intensely loyal and can be very thoughtful. You can never generalize about people. There are bad and good in any culture. The problem with the Islamic world now is that bad behavior is encouraged and rewarded.

I had a terrifying experience yesterday evening--one of those times when you become aware of just how fragile life is. My two sons were playing in a sand pile with some neighbor children. My youngest boy was making a tunnel when some sand fell on him. The other kids got it in their mind to bury him. Only my other son had the presence of mind to know that something wasn't right. He dug and pulled Daniel out of the sand and perhaps saved his life. I saw those kids playing on that pile and knew something wasn't right. I ran over there and demanded to know where Daniel was. He was lying on top of the pile not moving, and I could have died with terror. Daniel could move and breath, but he could not speak or stand. We called the paramedics. By the time the paramedics arrived Daniel could speak but he was tramatized. They checked him out and told me that he had paniced with fear, hyperventilated, and passed out.

My older son was filled with guilt and fear over what had happened to his brother. I hope he learned his lesson. The other children were dealt with by their parents. It was terrifying for all of us. But God protected my son, and I just cannot feast my eyes on him enough. Though he is phyically OK now, I am keeping him home for the tender loving care and reassurance he needs. He was a bit tramatized over the whole thing. Please pray for us, and pray that the children learned the lessons they needed to learn. No one meant to harm Daniel, but by ganging up on him and being mean, they unwittingly put his life in jeapordy. I also stuggle thinking that if I had been there this never would have happened, but I can't be with an eight year old boy every single minute.

Rhoda 5-14-2002 11:32


Sorry bout that, I changed the oil on my lawn mower yesterday and it strained something in my back, put me down on the couch for the rest of the day, never even had a chance to drop by the notebook to catch up on things.

Funny how something so simple as kneeling beside the mower for five minutes can do that well not funny, maddening.

The neighboring town Hettinger ND has the Black Devil for their mascot, haven't heard anyone complaining about that. When I lived in North Dakota, there was a big to-do about the Fighting Sioux nickname for the University of North Dakota's football team. The student body voted to change their name after all the local Native Americans complained, saying that the name was shameful for the Sioux nation.

There was this alumnus who indowed the new stadium that was nearly started when the vote came up, he said if the name were dropped, he would pull his millions from the stadium fund. The name stayed. Isn't it interesting, guess the old saying money talks is so very true. Personally I'm with the alumnus (Guess I'm one of those too, I graduated from the University of North Dakota but at their Lake Region Campus.)

Jack - any word on the workbook, sure do miss that, even the old one would be better then nothing, it used to give me a reason to write.

Mary -WELCOME HOME! So glad to see you back amongst us, I missed you. Missed the short night too, hopefully I'll get a chance to do something for this weeks.

Spring finally arrived yesterday, hit 70 degrees, supposed to hit 80 today. Guess I've got to go mow my daughter's yard, as well as mom's and my sisters as I have the bagger on my mower, an they don't. First and last mow fall to me so I can pick up the fall leaves, and the spring trash that is left from the fall leaves that fell after my last mow, and the things that mysteriously grow in the yards over winter. Hope my back holds up, I have a ridding mower, but it still puts quite a strain on it with all the unusual movements involved, and it still isn't right after yesterday's workout.

Jerry 5-14-2002 10:24

Teekay - Did I read that right? A good school for his daughter in Afghanistan? Isn't Afghanistan, that nation that we just "liberated" the one where females were banned from attending school? At least that's what our fearless leader said, when we liberated that nation and freed their women.

As far as that publisher, get an attorney and sue the bastards to extinction. There are thousands of lawyers out there, all of them hungry for the almighty dollar, and may will take the case on contingency meaning that you don't pay them but they take a third of the damages. In such a case as yours, it sounds as though the damages could be VERY high for their miss management. Also any good lawyer would see dollar signs when you mention that there are hundreds of other authors being treated the same, read class action law suit and awards that make dollar signs ring true in any lawyers eyes.

Other then that, if they are in the same jurisdiction as you, a small claims action may be possible, with small claims the cost is minimal, usually under fifty dollars, and lawyers ARE NOT allowed. This puts you on the same footing as the offender, and makes for a more fair hearing. It's that way in most states at any rate.

I'm not a lawyer, but trained as a paralegal so I do know a bit about such things.

Jerry 5-14-2002 10:04


Happy Birthday!

Rachel 5-14-2002 9:39

Happy Birthday, Heather! Don't singe your eyebrows blowing out the candles!

howard 5-14-2002 8:52

Happy Birthday, Heather. Hard to believe you are only thirty. You have the wisdom of someone much older.

Rhoda 5-13-2002 22:58

MARY!!!!!!! Wow, it HAS been an age, hasn't it? Ah, that's right, it was yesterday, when I was only 30.

Heather 5-13-2002 22:10

THANKS TEEK!!!!! ((((HUGS)))) ***SMOOCHES*****
I can't wait!!

Heather 5-13-2002 22:07

Bonita - tens of thousands of thanks to you for coming to the Notebook and relating your experience. I am really sorry to hear you are having so much trouble - is there the possibility of representing yourself in court? If so, I'd take that chance, since you are very well-spoken and certainly seem to know your rights; and best of all that you are in the right!
Please keep us posted on the progression of this matter. I'm pulling for you! ((HUGS)))

Hi everyone!
I am now officially 31!
Run, duck, hide! I'm not rampaging, and something is definitely 'up' with that! Is it normal to be cheerful as I age?
Toodles and wafts of candle-smoke,

Heather 5-13-2002 22:01

Back in February I contracted with 1stBooks Library, supposedly the biggest and best POD publisher. I truly believe in this new publishing tecnology but missing is a way for writers to discover which POD publisher is both reputable and professional as well as possessed of honesty. As you will read here, some are dust-sucking viper-hissing venom spewing thieves in Armani suits.

I felt that perhaps WN would have the avenues in which to spread the word on behalf of writers. I am a published author (non-vanity), but because of the nature of 3 books relating to the Bible I opted POD. After 6 months of discussing one of the book's special needs, I felt assured that FBL was competent thus submitted all the 3.

When I received the first galley, I was stunned at the mess, for weeks attempted to reach a resolution with them, ultimately advising (by certified letter) that I was terminating the contract. That's fine with them but they refuse to return my disks and refund my money.

I've had contract law, so I've no doubt that the issue weighs in my favor. But, I am disabled, living on $700 per month, so the initial outlay for an attorney is impossible.

While I could go to another, obviously more reputable POD publisher (which I did not know about then), I can do nothing unless FBL returns both my disks and money. Otherwise, technically the contract is not null and void, putting another publisher as well as myself at risk. Barring that, without my money, I could not pay another publisher.

Recently, I was advised there is an injunction-to-cease against FBL by children's publisher First Book, of whom FBL was aware before naming 1stBooks Library. First Book claims that FBL's bad reputation is harming their old, established business.

Further, I was informed that FBL uses an offshore printer, which puts writers' works at risk of plagiarism inasmuch as our copyright laws are of no effect in foreign countries. This also explains the inordinate time it takes FBL to bring a book to market(6-/12 to 8 months), highly unusual for a POD publisher.

During all this fiasco, I've been contacted by and been in contact with numerous writers and/or authors who have had terrible experiences with FBL, even one who never got back his disk or money; albeit, they all were astounded by what I'm going through.

In all this, coupled with my past experience with reputable publishers, I've discerned that FBL functions without integrity and honesty as well as being wholly unprofessional.

I ask nothing of WN, rather feeling that the writers and authors at your site should know about this POD publisher. BEWARE of 1stBooks Library.

Bonita M Quesinberry, R.C.
"Shades of the Rainbow" excerpt: "Love is every shade of the rainbow and no color at all."

Bonita M Quesinberry Unicorn Haven 5-13-2002 21:40

RANDALL - again - A couple of years ago we had a similar situation in a town near here. The Chenango Forks Blue Devils came under fire, and barely survived. Then there were the North High Indians, who fell to the PC crowd. Everybody has his/her personal axe to grind, and some are quite comical.
We did have a billboard that was a bit risque for the locals, too. It was put up by our PBS affiliate, and showed an orchestra (if I remember right), and standing facing them, with his back to the viewer, was a man, apparently wearing nothing but a raincoat - held wide open. The caption read: "Expose yourself to the classics."


Yes, there are a lot of great Zane Grey books, and I've read most of them. "Robber's Roost" was one of my favorites, along with "Betty Zane," "The Light of the Western Stars," "The U.P. Trail," and many more. He was one of the best descriptive writers I ever read. I devoted a section to him in an essay I had published a few years ago.

howard 5-13-2002 21:24

RANDALL - old cowboy -- My granddaughter just sent me this and I immediately thought of you!


The old cowboy came riding into town on a hot, dry, dusty day.

The local sheriff watched from his chair in front of the saloon as the Cowboy wearily dismounted and tied his horse to the rail a few feet in front of the sheriff.

"Howdy, stranger..."

"Howdy, Sheriff..."

The cowboy then moved slowly to the back of his horse, lifted its tail, and planted a big kiss where the sun don't shine. He dropped the horse's tail, stepped up on the walk, and aimed towards the swinging doors of the saloon.

"Hold on, Mister..."

"Yes Sheriff."

"Did I just see what I think I just saw?"

"Reckon you did, Sheriff...I got me some really chapped lips..."

"And that cures them?"

"Nope, but it keeps me from lickin' 'em."

howard 5-13-2002 21:06



This is from the SLC Tribune, Sunday edition. I thought it was cute. The author is Tom Barberi a contributor to the SLC Tribune.

"...I, as well as many from your neck of the woods, Utah County, seem to be under the devil's influence. Nothing else can explain the behavior of the mass of people who seem determined to worship at the altar of Beelzebub.

The grumbling turned into a roar, then a full-scale stampede last week when the "good" people of Springville stood up and tried to exorcise the devil whose grip on the local High School seemed unbreakable. The debate was fierce but the righteous were courageous in their effort to save their community from the stranglehold that Satan has maintained lo these many decades.

What better way to break this cycle than with the most divine and democratic action that any community could take? Put it to a vote of the people and expose the evil for what it is so the blind might see and the sick may be healed by the light of truth that would vanquish the prince of darkness and show him for what he is: evil!

With such a campaign (and the momentum that seemed to be growing among the pure and good), surely the devil and his hordes would be banished once and for all.

The day of reckoning came. When the votes were counted it seemed that evil is not so easily defeated. The amazing part of this silly exercise is that it exposed something for which those in office should be mindful: The devil has more support than any other elected official in Springville, according to the turnout and results.

The numbers don't lie: In this off-year, offbeat election, the question attracted more than 6,400 people to the polls with 76 percent voting to keep the devil. In the municipal election in November with real offices and people up for vote, only 1,963 people cared enough to show up.

What does this tell us about how the people of Springville feel about their elected officials?

Apparently, the Red Devil mascot of Springville High is more popular than any other candidate that runs for public office. It would seem that if the next municipal election had the devil on the ballot along with the others who ran last time there would be a much better turnout and possibly very embarrassing outcome.

This whole mascot debate is silly, but it has given all of us a chance to have a good laugh and at the same time better identify who the real nutballs of the community are.

The anti-devils can take heart: The devil of the future will be a kinder and gentler character. Maybe the new mascot pictures will see him evolve and have him wearing a tutu with ballet slippers and instead of his tail having a point, it will be shaved like a poodle's with a big powder puff on the end. Instead of a pitchfork, he will wield a large spoon and his horns. Hey, a guy has to at least have horns!

Sorry, the devil made me do it again. Ciao!

Tom Barberi is a talk show host on KALL-910 AM from 6 to 10 a.m. Satan on the ballot? Tom, is this an announcement that you are moving to Springville to run for mayor?..."

What a whacky world we live in!!

Howard...Stranger on the Trail is another good novel by Zane Grey. Robbers Roost ... gee, the list is endless. I cut my reading glasses reading Mr. Greys novels when I was young. This could have been the basis for my infatuation with the wilds of red rock southern Utah. If you ask any of my friends..."Where would Randall like to love?" They will hold a hand to their face and groan ... "Utah, that's all he talks about! Give us a break!"


Randall 5-13-2002 20:21


Happy birthday to you,
happy birthday to you,
happy birthday dear Heatheeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeer
happy birthday to you.
Am going to the P.O. today.
Shivers in anticipation.

GARIESS: Ma-a-a-an, I know excactly where you're coming from!
Along with David Hicks there is another Al Q'aeda (sp?) suspect over in Guatanamo Bay. A middle Eastern man who was caught making several trips to Afghanistan, he was caught while crossing over the border.
Says he was only there to look for a good Arabic school for his daughters.
Now, even if that were true, what the hell is an Australian citizen doing sending his kids to school in Afghanistan?
So much for coming to Australia for the lifestyle. Give it 20 years and we may very well be a predominately Moslem country as well.
Very scary thought.
Because, dontcha know, Australian couples are choosing wealth and holiday houses over parenthood.
Most Arabic people don't (wether the woman would rather it or not)
So, doing my maths, I'm willing to bet that, unless something fairly radical happens to change the way things are heading, that's what will happen.

MARY: So there you are, I have missed you, and no, I don't have my T.K. Tinklies yet, and I know you don't have your smelly belly yet, but it's coming.

Have a great day all.

P.S. saw my avon lady yesterday. I may have been a little hasty on the evil thing. Am thinking she might be only slightly wicked.

Teekay 5-13-2002 19:45


Your experience with an Islamic man/boy freind, whatever, is a text book, classic example. You are one among god knows how many. The daughter of a friend of mine went with a man from Bigdickistan, or some such damn place who was here on a "student visa." She went on a cross country trip with him during which he told her that she was now "his woman" and she would be required to provide him with sex and serve him in any way he demanded. Another scenario in microcosm of how these people fail to understand that they can't impose their cultural standards on people in another land.

She managed to run away from him in New York and call for money to come home, since the monkeyhumper had appropriated her cash in the meantime. The experience was a lifetime cure for the girl as far as any involvement with Mideastern men is concerned.

gariess 5-13-2002 13:35


You remarked: "Was reading in the paper today how some Illegal immigrants were returned to their
country today swearing hatred against Australia, though they're happy to be home now
that the Westerns have risked their lives to remove the Taliban.
Go figure."

This typifies my frustration with a certain behavioral pattern among Arab people. They simply can't get it through their heads that the rest of the world is not responsible for their failures. Nor is the rest of the world required to take care of them. Disregarding the immigration laws of other countries does not grant them the high moral ground that they appropriate for themselves.

In this country we have idiotic foreign aid programs that send money to qualified Arab states who, in turn, distribute the money to politically favored people, who in turn emigrate to this country and buy mini-marts and motels with the seed money. Is there anything wrong with this picture? I'm paying taxes for Arabs to come to my country and open businesses, some of which will be used as operating bases for terrorists who plan to kill me. Give me mercy, I beg you.

Other than that everything is very nice.

gariess 5-13-2002 13:13

Hi guys!

Long time no read! I have been busier than a one armed paper-hanger with head lice! (Which is the cleaned-up version of the original joke.)

Nice job on italicizing the notebook Owhard!!!! You did a bang-up job. Hehe.

HEATHER, Hi girlie, how are you? Been ages since we talked. LOLOLOL ;-)

TEEKAY! Hello sweet thang. Did you get your TK Tinklers yet?

LITTER: My personal favorite poem in the Henderson book is 'Sometimes', but my kids like "What is the Point of a Goldfish' best. The whole book is fun! Hugs to you!

CHRISTI: Hope all is well, I have been thinking of you.

I don't have much time, but it has been ages since I last posted and I miss you! I have been shirking my shortie night duties and for that I apologize. Quite frankly, I am surprised I haven't been fired!!! This week's theme is....


Mary 5-13-2002 1:57

As far as the Arab discussion, can't say as I ever had an Arab friend, not that I had any Arab enemies, it's just that there aren't a lot of Arab's here.

I did know a Jewish fellow, he was in my section, I was his section chief, and I gotta tell you, he was the very best worker I ever had. He was a former Spanish instructor from back east somewhere, and re joined the Army when he was 34 because he said everyone was against him because of his Jewish herriatige. Could have been, as I say there aren't a lot of Arab's or Jew's here.

There was this Lebanese fellow who owned some property here in town when I was a kid. Dad rented a house from him for a year or so, and he seemed to be a fair caring landlord. When dad found a house for sale cheap, he bought it and we moved there, I missed the running water we had in the rental but became used to the lack there of, as that was the only house we had when I was growing up with running water and sewer. The fellow we rented from told dad that there was good things happening in Lebanon, and that he was "going home". He sold all his properties here and moved back. I'm sure he is dead by now as he was a fairly old man when I knew him.

I don't recall ever meeting much less knowing any Arab's in the service. There were probably some, but not on the bases that I served.

So as I said, I can't say that I know any of them, therefore, I guess I can't say weather they are good folks, or bad.

I think they must be, like all people, some good, some bad. I worry at what I hear from the media about their beliefs, their wish to see us dead.

Maybe I did something to make them that way, but to tell the truth, I can't recall what it could have been to make them so angry.

Are they angry because we have running water? That we have electricity? It looks to me like many of them have the same.

Is it because of our belief in God? From what I hear they believe in the self same God that we do, just a different profit.

I think they hate us because we're free, that must be it. If they had the same bills to pay that most of us have, they wouldn't think we were so damn free.

Guess it's just a misunderstanding, sure wish somebody would set them fellows straight.

Jerry 5-13-2002 0:55

Well the dinner is over. My wife and daughter cooked most of it, mom did the roast, everyone ate.

We played a couple of games of cards, and the day is over.

What a relief.

I always feel so out of place at moms, as I'm the only male there, surrounded by women, my wife, who is always with me, our daughter, mom, who gave me life, my sister who used to tease me to no end, and her two daughters.

Oh there was one more fellow, the new baby, he was there, but somehow I find conversations with him a bit lacking.

Jerry 5-13-2002 0:14


I worked with many Arab people both in college and graduate school. They were for the most part intelligent, generous, and at times humorous. The thing that was so hard about my friend was that he was a very fine young man, but he had no respect for my culture and the things I valued. He was often carried away with the same political mutterings you hear today when people in the Arab world defend the bombing of the world trade center. I am a little ashamed because I listened and was not near as disturbed as I should have been. Sadly this person did not have the capacity for happiness, and though he cared for me, he could not help but make me miserable. Many of his problems was his upbringing.

I think the Arab people are good and fine. I really admire them in many ways. It is just the way they are being taught and influenced that is unfortunate.

Rhoda 5-13-2002 0:13

EDDIE -- I missed it too, at first, until I scrolled down the page as you directed. Good story! Short, to the point, and now a wasted word in the bunch! It's good to see you back among the actively writing!

Howard 5-12-2002 23:26


When I wrote:
I have no real substantial facts in the ways of the Arab world.

I was refering to their history, to their religion, to their moral codes, to their everyday life.

I'm in the middle of a book called 'I dared to call him Father' which is about a muslim woman's change to the Christian religion.

Now that woman was up against amazing odds, the condemnation of her people, the strongest probably being her family. The loss of those dear to her, the loss of respect for a once priveledged standing in society.

How many others like her are there?

And now, I just can't think of anything else to say, so I guess I'd best go and wash those dishes.

RANDALL: You are an invigorating breath of untainted air :-D

And I do agree with what your saying. It was similar to what I was trying to say myself, but I guess I was doing it badly.

Teekay 5-12-2002 21:37


And remember ARIK? ARIK was lovely.
And he was from the middle East - wasn't he?
Wonder what became of him.

Teekay 5-12-2002 21:24


GARIESS: Well, no, I must admit to being fairly aware re: the Arab conflict at this time, but I really try hard not to stereotype. We see the crazy radical Arabs on the news and blowing themselves to smithereens taking plenty of innocents with them, but I'm trying to give the benefit of the doubt that there might be some Arabs there who just want to live in peace.
From what I've seen of the media we're only going to see the sensationalist crap.

We've been having our own fair share of the demands of Illegal middle Eastern Immigrants and their direct flouting of our laws, but I try and maintain a touch of compassion. I can only imagine the decrepit lifestyle that turned them into such a violent race, but then it is only the troublemakers that make the headlines and most are ready to slot them all in the same category.
Maybe they are all the same, but that's something I don't know.

As for my Avon lady, evil beyond the shadow of a doubt :-D

Was reading in the paper today how some Illegal immigrants were returned to their country today swearing hatred against Australia, though they're happy to be home now that the Westerns have risked their lives to remove the Taliban.
Go figure.

BTW: Judaism is a word.

Devil? What devil?

EDDIE: Ohhhhhhhhhhh the first page. I just went straight to flash fiction - what a dill!
Good story.

RHODA: I knew a rather dashing Egyptian once. He wrote me a very romantic note, it said:
(Insert name :-D)your eyes are beautiful, I wish to see you in Egypt.

Short but sweet.( the note I mean)

Thought of this in the wee hours of the morning:


The house was sold years ago. I run my hand over the cold cement of the front fence of my childhood. The sharp scent of the pine hedge is carried to me on a breath of breeze.
I think of Nana's kitchen; of apricot tarts and roasted dinners.
The voices of my mother and aunts speak of grown-up things and how much it costs to get a decent dress these days.
And I hear the laughter of children.
My laughter,
as once I was, in another time.
A naturopath bought the house. A healer of the psyche.
I wonder if he knows about the ghosts.

Have a great day all.

Teekay 5-12-2002 20:42

RANDALL -- That's why I mentioned "Riders of the Purple Sage." It was one of my favorite books as a kid, and is a classic story of the Mormon influence in the old west.

howard 5-12-2002 16:38


Again and FYI



Isn't it incongruous that two such diverse but related religious persuasions, influenced by the ministry of Jesus, Son of God should settle in an area of inland sea ... which is highly concentrated salt water? Inlet but no outlet? I love the parallels between the Jewish religion and The Latter-Day Saints, for they are intriguing.

The Dead Sea in Israel is saltiest inland body of water in the world. The second saltiest inland body of water in the world is ... The Great Salt Lake of Utah.

The ministry of Jesus in Israel - Jesus in America as per Joseph Smith. (Yes, I realize the Jewish religion does not acknowledge Jesus as the Son of God but they should not discount the obvious.)

Jews have been persecuted for their beliefs and hounded from country to country till they found a homeland. Ditto for Mormons in American states till they found a homeland.

Jews fled religious persecution in Europe, home of the Anglo-Saxons for a desert land. The Mormons left American Anglo-Saxon civilization for an area of desert.

An uncountable number of Jews, hundreds of thousands, fled to Israel after WW II. During the mid-1800's, 100,000 Mormons fled to Utah. If we look at this percentage wise, that is post World War II Europe and 1840's America it's about right.

The Israelis live in a mountainous, high desert environment as Utah for the Mormons.

Water is important in desert regions both Israel and Utah.

Jewish settlers are pioneers in irrigation as are Mormon farmers.

Jewish families are close. Mormons are strongly family oriented.

It is a matter of record that the Jewish community is frugal with money. The Mormon Church is considered quite wealthy by some.

Followers of Jesus martyred - Latter Day Saints Joseph and Hyrum Smith killed by a mob in Illinois.

There are militant Jews and Mormon fundamentalists.

Jewish religious factions have had trouble with their government, same for the Mormons.

Jewish settlers have created an oasis of technology in the desert. Utah blooms because of Mormon ingenuity and work ethic.

The Jews of Israel have a powerful ally in the United States. The Mormons of Utah could not have a more powerful ally than ... their own religion, industriousness and family values.

I acknowledge that most religions suffered alike events and similar locations of existence, but a nagging thought constantly comes to mind. Coincidences happen in life, but God's Plan, unknown to us, may be directing each of us individually and as a group into channels of testimony for His use. Think about it some time. The obvious may be before us in plain sight, but we cannot see through our own pitiful ideas of existence....


Randall 5-12-2002 13:55


Good morning all...

Happy Mothers Day Ladies!

My wife, thinks she knows everything! I often sleep in on Sunday, so it was 9:00 when I awakened. I rolled over and patted her on the arm....

"Happy Mothers Day dear."

"Don't even think about it!" she mumbled.

"But, I was just wishing you a happy mothers...."

She rolled on her stomach, pulling the bed covers around her as tight as an Egyptian mummy. "I know what's on your mind buster! If you wanna do something, go make some biscuits!"

Women! Think they know everything! Biscuits ready in a few minutes dear. Speaking of biscuits. When I'm energized, I make ‘em from scratch. Otherwise, I make ‘em from a cardboard tube. Last time we were shopping I bought two tubes or ready made dough, claiming to be TEXAS SIZE! I took out an 18-inch pizza pan only minutes ago, wiped a generous helping of bacon grease on the pan and opened two tubes of God Bless America, TEXAS SIZE, high tech, already formatted, cook at 350 for 20 minutes, raw biscuit dough. Working outward from the center I placed them till all were in position, filling the pan. Except one lone hold out, ah, which I held.

If I had a 24" pizza pan, there would have been room for all...except one. If I had a 36" pizza pan there would have been room for all...but one. Is there some unwritten rule of the universe that covers these situations? I have no doubt that somewhere, in the outback (Hi Teekay) of our solar system roams a planet that could not fit in and was left out!

Jerry...I read the latest posts. Really heavy stuff dealing with religion. But when I came across the mention of Zane Grey and Riders of the Purple Sage...well now! That caught my attention! There are western novels such as Shane and The Virginian ... but "Riders" far leads the pack in my mind. There is a chase across a sage flat in the novel. One of the outlaws chasing the good guy loses control of his horse. The horse is "running away." The outlaw, as I remember the tale is a little man. He crawls onto the neck of the racing horse...clamps his teeth on the horse's nostrils, trying to cut off the animal's oxygen so he will stop!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

I read "Riders" as a teenager in the early 60's and mentioned this feat to my grandfather, an old time cowboy. He nodded and as best I can recall... "If you can get a runaway to turn his head he will slow because he cannot see ahead. I have heard of cowboys roping the horse's nose and pulling the rope tight to cut off his oxygen. But I never heard of that trick!"

I was researching a novel several years ago, THE SOUND OF YOUR VOICE CALLING and needed "Riders." I reread it and it was as good as ever. I happened to glance at a blank page at the end...and there was my handwriting...from 30 years before.

Speaking of Zane Grey and Riders of the Purple Sage and Utah and Mormons ... for they are connected.

Religion/faith are what believers make of it. Joseph Smith, whether a con man or not founded a religion ... Brigham Young carried it forward, and Mormonism evolved into something good. Family values and a strong work ethic are strong in LDS society. And yes there are detractors who may have valid reasons for pointing fingers. Religion is practiced by humans and we all know humanity to be somewhat flawed. But overall Mormons are good, God fearing people who made a barren desert thrive, through hard work and innovation, and technical prowess. Just like the Israelis.

I mentioned technical prowess. When I lived in Utah, I helped a man clear an old home site. I noticed he was loading 10' sections of very old aspen tree trunks that had been split their length. Coiled around the length were spiral bands of steel.

I asked what? He replied with a grin. "Pioneer irrigation. They split an aspen lengthwise, hollowed it out, put it back together and held it with wire bands. Then they ran water through it. It will leak till the wood swells, that is what the wire bands are for, they hold the two sections together when the wood expands. After that it will carry water as good as a steel pipe."

So, what are you saying Randall?

There are lost arts that only a hundred years ago were commonplace. Whether to turn a runaway horse or irrigate from snow melt or make your religion a reality. Religion and crops and horses all require positive input from simple humans.

Damn! While I've been busting your chops with my pratter the biscuits have been disappearing!

Gotta go!


Randall 5-12-2002 13:27


Sorry to have needled you. The devil made me do it. And we all know who the devil is, don't we Teekay?


Fine, as long as we all understand that Gariess is not participating in a discussion on Scripture. My observations are entirely apart from any religious debate. I am a practicing atheist. It takes a lot of practice to get it right.


If you have no facts on the Arab world, you must be living in a tunnel in the middle of the Outback. I cannot believe that modern communication has so remarkably failed the Australian public, or that you are that oblivious to current events.

That word reminds me. Seen on a resume: "I have worked extensively in pubic communications." Now, how can anyone ignore a frack of that caliber? I mean, could you sit across the desk from this guy and keep a straight face? This is one more warning for us to check our text, people.

gariess 5-12-2002 12:22


gariess 5-12-2002 11:51

You can borrow my specs if you like:¬)
It's right there on the first page, under 'Flash Fiction'
Just scroll down a little.

Eddie Literary Pot Pourri 5-12-2002 5:38

Frank and I just got back from seeing THE TIME MACHINE at the dollar theatre. It was good, but much darker than the original movie.

I am looking forward to seeing the STAR WARS movie next week. Unfortunately the reviews are not too good. None of the critics liked the last one either, but I didn't think it was so bad. Most critics didn't like THE FELLOWSHIP OF THE RING either, and were they wrong!

Rhoda 5-11-2002 23:46

Confession time:

I fell madly in love with an Arab man from Iraq once upon a time. Sadly I learned more about some facets Arab culture than I ever needed to know. It was a very painful experience and no doubts colors my perspective about Arabs, Muslims and the like.

Rhoda 5-11-2002 23:40


EDDIE: WHOOOOOOEEEEEEEEE CONGRATULATIONS!!!!!! I checked out the site,but didn't see your name there, so either they just haven't put it up yet, or you use a different name and haven't told us.
I'll keep checking.

BTW: This might sound really wierd, but I'll say it anyway. I used to be fairly ho hum about all the religious stuff and thought we should just all be nioce to each other, but one day a few months ago some women rang me trying to sell a phone, but somehow we got onto matters theological and she told me about this book my Betty J Eadie, I also ordered a phone and then had to ring around for 20 minutes afterward to cancel the order, but that's neither here nor there, (the phone arrived anyway, but I told the man to take it away)
Anyway, I read the book and from there my interest in theology is pretty much insatiable, and the thing is, the more I read, the more I think Wow, everybody should know this.
Anyhow, I'm of the strong opinion that when one is ready for a lesson a teacher will be provided.
I love all this type of stuff.

JERRY: You're right, after that menu run through I'm thinking maybe the cafe is a better idea :-D

GARIESS: Hmmmmm, nope, I have no real substantial facts in the ways of the Arab world, but, here's my theory anyway :-D
I think that these people are so deluded because for a start apparently they were born from 4 families (I do't quite know where I got this bit of information from), and so there maybe some significant effects from inbreeding. I'm also of the opinion that brainwashing holds a lot of power over these people and that would be from their religion (wether it be the real one or the man made part of it)
But this is only my lounge chair theory, I have only known a few Arabs in my time and I must say that I am quite aware that the saying 'mad as an Arab' exists for a reason.
That is not to say that there are not sane Arabs, only that I have yet to meet one.
And really is mad such a bad thing anyway, so long as you play nice?
Also, can we include my Avon lady in the list of non nice people.

Teekay 5-11-2002 23:02

GARIESS -- you said
"When assimilated into non-Arab states Arabs are fine citizens. Still, on their own, it is true that they fail to pass all tests of viabilty as participants in a modern world. Their governments invariably are drawn to weapons as the only thing they want from civilization at large. As governments, war among themselves and the rest of the world, and hatred of Israel are their all consuming interests..."

I understand that in the Old Testament the language was constructed such that (often) when a statement was made about a man, it also applied to his descendants. Of Ishmael -- the father of the Arabs -- it was said in Genesis 16:12

"And he will be a wild man; his hand will be against every man, and every man's hand against him; and he shall dwell in the presence of all his brethren."

That certainly seems to describe much of the Arab world today.
The statement, by the way, was made by "The Angel of the LORD," and is believed to be (based on many other references) what is known as a "Theophany" -- an appearance of the pre-incarnate Christ Jesus.

howard 5-11-2002 17:42

Rhoda: I tend to ignore the spell check as well. When my students write I tell them to ignore the spelling and just get it onto the paper. The spelling is the least of our worries when we're going for the central idea. You have great ideas so obviously you are doing something right.

Viv again 5-11-2002 17:16

Thanks Carol! Glad to see you were perceptive enough to catch the humor there!

Viv 5-11-2002 17:14


I was too lazy to use the spell check. I admit it. I can brutalize the English language when I am sloppy.

Rhoda 5-11-2002 16:31


So which is it? Mohammad or Mohummad. Judiasm also has an amusing ring to it when one pronounces it to one’s self. Is that some kind of orgasm of Judi? Just kidding.


Very interesting point of view from John Derbyshire. I would not want to be the one to debate him on it. I sometimes feel the Arab world is hopeless, myself. I hate to feel that way, but I beg anyone to convince me otherwise. I am willing to believe—and do believe—there is no fundamental flaw in the Arab character. When assimilated into non-Arab states Arabs are fine citizens. Still, on their own, it is true that they fail to pass all tests of viabilty as participants in a modern world. Their governments invariably are drawn to weapons as the only thing they want from civilization at large. As governments, war among themselves and the rest of the world, and hatred of Israel are their all consuming interests. Who even remembers what the issues were that brought Iran and Iraq into the epic armed conflict of recent decades?

In spite of it all, I believe the great majority of citizens of the Arab world want only to live peacefully. They just never seem to support a government that will let them do so. Witness how long the Iraquis have tolerated the dictatorship of Saddam. He is a despotic leader who has brought unimaginable hardship upon his people, and still they are-for good reasons, no doubt-unable to depose him. It begs the question: Where are the dissidents, and what are they doing? The Iraquis would be glad to get rid of Saddam if they could find a way. The problem seems to be that Arabs will tolerate severe conditions before they will rise up, and when and if they do, it must be in response to a religious appeal. A jihad in combination with fanatical, prejudicial hatred appears to be the only thing that will move the Arabs to act. When prompted into an agressive war the medieval values of rape and pillage seem to be the sustaining factor in their zeal. Witness the invasion of Kuwait by the Iraquis.

I would like nothing better than to see a record of nobility in recent history on the part of one Arab state on which to build a basis for hope. I appeal to anyone to make a case for one Country. Jordan and Egypt would be the two that would be the easiest to support, but where were the supply routes into Iraq during the UN sanctions? It's no secret that these countries turned a blind eye to shipments crossing their borders.

Now we are left with a mess in the Arab world that we can't fix, and we can't ignore. We are going to have to deal with Saddam before nukes us, and I have not the least doubt that he eventually will, if left untreated like the cancerous disease that he is. We have never been closer to a West versus East conflict than we are right now, and I am afraid it could be cataclysmic.

Other than that, everything else is very nice.

gariess 5-11-2002 14:21

Me again.
Almost forgot.... Just got a 'Flash' published. The Magazine is out in print this month for about $9.00 (I think)
The electronic version is on the link below.

Eddie Literary Pot Pourri 5-11-2002 14:20

It's so gratifying to see a real debate carried out under such civilised conditions. It could only happen here on the notebook. Most times our bonds are so tight that it produces this kind of honest and adult interaction. Well done.

The discussion has drawn me into examining my own persona and although I am always reluctant to get involved in this sort of debate here on the notebook, I feel that a lot of what has been said has missed the point in an obvious way.

What is it?
How did it develop?
What does it mean to folk now?

My own deeply held belief is that religion began as as the founding of no more than a moral code by which to live ones life here on earth in a good and productive way.
The concept of an after-life I believe came later.
The question then becomes;
Why do we conform to a certain religious doctrine?
Is it to seek a better existence in some other state which occurs after death, or do we conform in an attempt to create a utopia here on earth while we live. It is very important to me to live my life in an honest and truthful way. Am I then religious? I was raised a roman catholic. (See the Jack Dooley episodes by clicking the link below) I do not attend church on a regular basis but I try to 'Do unto others as I would like to be done unto myself'
This is the basis of the RC religion. Am I religious?
Do we have to conform to any particular doctrine to be 'a good christian'? 'One of the faithful'? 'A true believer'?
I truly do not think so. All we have to do is live our lives in the best way that we can and be tolerent to others as long as they allow us to live the way we wish to unimpeded by bigotry or oppression.

In other words, it's what is inside that counts and how you treat your fellow human beings, not what badge you wear.
We can get bogged down with the Minutiae of the message and where it came from. The only important issue is whether or not we adhere to the message.

OK....that's it from me on the subject.

Eddie Writing 5-11-2002 14:07

Don't think I didn't offer to cook dinner, but the menu didn't seem to impress anyone.

Here's what I had planned, in memory of dad (his all time favorite foods):

To begin, a healthy serving of calf brains, brazed.

Followed by a small serving of tiger meat (raw hamburger with chopped onions)

The main dish Ox-tail stew.

Then some soft boiled eggs with butter,

For desert, luttafisk rolled in buttered lefsa.

I think that's when mom decided that my daughter should do the cooking.

The wife is over there now making Cole slaw for the church dinner, I hope she gets to sample it, she does love the stuff, and I can't eat it anymore, simply doesn't agree with me anymore.

Jerry 5-11-2002 12:23

Howard, Rhoda, Teekay - Hugs to each of you.

Rachel 5-11-2002 11:37


JACK: I swear, my blood pressure never got above 120 over 80, and I like that elephant idea.

JERRY: Phew! For a minute there I thought it was nearly gonna be you cooking the mother's day lunch.

CHRISTI: I dunno what to say. I'm taken all over with warm and fuzzy feelings.
Thanks girly :-)

RHODA & HOWARD: Isn't it so much fun getting everyone all nervy like that.
Interesting how most maintained a polite silence :-D
Warm and fuzzies to y'all :-)

And perhaps I'm feeling exceptionally warm and fuzzy coz I'm going out the estchon (that's the way number one son pronounces restaurant) and I don't have to think cooking & kitchen thoughts. *sigh*

Teekay 5-11-2002 3:42

Boy, looks like things got a bit exciting at times here since the last time I checked in :-) . Given that I consider myself a card carrying Episcopagan I probably should just look on from afar. I will mention my own basic tenet on theology and religion. Remember those five blind men, or was it four, well, anyway, they had never encountered an elephant. Each attached his hands to a different portion of the elephant. One the tail. Another, well, you get the idea or have heard this story before. The elephant is all that is divine and is god(s) or goddess or what have you and none of the individual blind men has a whole take on what the truth is since that is not part of the cosmic game plan :-) Main thing is to treat each other with compassion and not worry about the small stuff. Leastways, that is my approach to the whole affair.

Been doing a lot of diving lately. Am getting set to do my Rescue Diver Course along with CPR/Fist Aid course. I am also doing a course of Underwater Videography. If you check http://www.fenwithfins.org/divingvideos.html I have some new stuff up from our recent trip to the San Juan Islands. Mainly scallops which turn out to be the inspiration for Pacmen in my mind, little yellow critters that chew away at Puget Sound to motivate themselves around.

We are also trying to make arrangements so we can go up to Hornby Island, which is up the coast on Vancouver Island and is also noted for being a great place in the summer to come up, close and personal with Six Gill Sharks. Hoping to make that happen.

Anyway, hope all are well and all the mothers in the audience are treated with great lavish chunks of love and caring and all that kind of stuff (a technical term)

Take care all

Jack Beslanwitch 5-11-2002 1:43

Boy, I'm sure glad you all got that sorted out.

Mothers day is just around the corner, and the whole family is up in arms about who should cook dinner.

It is our tradition that our daughter (and son when he's around) take mom out to dinner (dad gets to go along too of course).

It is the tradition between mom and my sister that mom fix dinner for everyone just like every other Sunday, then cards.

My sisters daughter's birthday is right around the same time, so she is treated special (she's always treated special) and doesn't have to do anything for mothers day.

Mom is laid up with arthritis in her neck and doesn't want to cook dinner.

My sister is off, but her other daughter is coming down with the latest grandchild, so she refuses to cook dinner.

My mother called our daughter and told her that she would have to cook dinner for everyone, me and the wife, my mom, my sister, her two daughters, and her three son's, and husband.

My daughter has to be to work by 2:00 PM.

Think we'll just head south and stop when we come to a cafe, let the rest fend for themselves.

I hate family holidays.

Jerry 5-11-2002 0:50


I am Ex-mormon and Ex-Christian... I dont have any problems with the belief in God... Only the structural part of Religion
I follow the Ten Commandments easily
I live a good life
And I try to be nice to everyone... "TRY" to

Taylor 5-11-2002 0:08

It's interesting that I just picked up an old copy of Zane Grey's "Riders of the Purple Sage" for my "close-in" reading stack. I think I'll move it to the top of the pile now.

Also right in the middle of Jean Auel's new book - "The Shelters of Stone." It's okay, but I think she's reaching a bit on this one. I'm only finishing it because I wanna see what Ayla invents next.

howard 5-10-2002 23:01

Awwwww. I just saw TEEKAY'S and RHODA'S recent posts. That's nice to see. Now that's how two friends should discuss theology. And they say it can't be done. {{{HUGS}}} Warm and fuzzies for all.

christi 5-10-2002 22:31

Hallooooooooo, friends!

Hooeyyyyyy!!!!!!! Boy are you ever in it, TEEKAY! Bail out, bail out!
Know what? You dragged me back here simply by your presence. Now doesn't that feel nice? :) I just love seeing you posting.

HEATHER, So sorry! I just saw what you wrote. I did kind of leave things hanging there. I'm happy to say that I'm virus free, and have been writing and reading with all my spare time. Thanks for your crit! I've left off on that last story (it didn't thrill me) and am totally jazzed about a first draft I've been writing. (I refuse to use the word 'novel' for fear of intimidating myself.)

HALLEE, I'm so glad to see you! Sorry for chiming in so late. ((((((((((((((((((((HUGS)))))))))))))))))

EDDIE, I LOVE THAT EMAIL! My faves are 2, 3, 4... oh hell, the whole list it brilliant! Thanks, I needed that.

On religion, er... as an ex-Mormon I think I'd better say nothing on the subject. :)

Hee! RANDALL! I adore tacky jokes. If they ain't tacky I ain't tellin em. I really don't think like a southerner, but I'm not officially a southerner, right? Arizonza is southwest. Maybe I am though, in that laid back, outgoing kind of way. I'd have a hard time living anywhere where I couldn't smile and say hi to people and not have them think I'm crazy.

So good to see everyone. I'm hopelessly behind, but wanted to say HI! On the writing front I got three rejection notices in only two days this week, and the experience was mmmmm, interesting. Had to talk myself out of being tragically bummed about it. I really don't mind rejection, but I don't like getting it that close together, know what I mean? Sigh. Pick myself up and dust myself off again.

Love to all,

christi 5-10-2002 22:27


I love you too. Forgive me, I am an egghead, and I get a bit carried away in a discussion. You're a smart lady, and I admire you a great deal. Good luck on your study. I am still praying for you.

Rhoda 5-10-2002 22:00


RHODA & HOWARD: Well golly, I know that there are those who would use religion to do evil, but wouldn't one realise that maybe something wasn't quite right when asked to go out and slay 746 dog walkers whose only crime was allowing their dogs to poopy on the footpath?

I haven't read enough of Islam to know what they deny and don't deny, but then again is this denial the word of God or the word of man?
BUT as soon as I have I shall be back to share with you my findings on matters theological.

Must get busy reading,
and remember, I love you both.

Teekay 5-10-2002 21:35

TEEKAY -- Jesus claimed to be God incarnate. "In the beginning was the Word (another name for Jesus), the Word was with God, and the Word was God. The Word became flesh, and dwelt among us."

Joseph Smith and Muhammed both contradict this.

All through the history of Israel, the sacrificial lamb was to cover the sins of the people. John the Baptist said (of Jesus) "Behold the Lamb the takes away the sins of the world." (Not covers them over).

Joseph Smith and Muhammed both contradict this.

John said "For God so loved the world that He sent His only begotten Son, that whosoever believeth on Him should not perish, but have eternal life."

Joseph Smith and Muhammed both contradict this.

Jesus said "I am come that they might have life."

Joseph Smith and Muhammed both contradict this.

The Bible says "The wages of sin is death, but the gift of God is eternal life through Jesus Christ."

Joseph Smith and Muhammed both contradict this.

The angel in the garden said "He (Jesus) is not here, for He has risen as he said."

Joseph Smith and Muhammed are both dead.

Who ya gonna believe?

howard 5-10-2002 20:50


I do not believe Mohammad. Does that make him any less relevent? Do you believe everything you are told?

People have been speaking in the name of God since time began, and some of what people have claimed to have heard has led others to do horrible things. Jim Jones heard from God and convinced his followers to commit mass suicide. There are many warnings in the Bible about believing false phophets. We are told specifically not to believe everything we hear. We are to weigh everything. When ever someone tells me they heard a message from God, skepicism always breaks in, even if this messenger is member of my own church. Our own thoughts deceive and the devil deceives. Paul also writes that "Satan often mascarades as a messenger of light." The books of I and II Timothy are full of warnings of false teachings, and all these occur in the context of the church body.

I am not open-minded. I am terribly unfair, but I am a Christian, and as a Christian I cannot believe that all paths lead to God and that all beliefs are equally valid. I know that it is politically correct to do so, but I am not interested in being fair or politically correct. I just wish to follow Jesus who said, "I am the way, the truth and the life. No man comes to the father but by me."

Not everyone believes that statement, and that is individual choice. It cannot be forced. I have reasons for believing as I do. I cannot prove anything, and I certainly wouldn't want anyone to take my word for it. But God is a spirit and a personality, and He must be received on His own terms and not on mine or yours. I do not know all truth, and I am ignorant about many things, but on pain of death, God grant me strength, I would die than accept any revelation or "truth" that I know in my heart is wrong.

The fashion is to craft a religion out of modern fairness and warm fuzzies, but faith is more than feeling good. It is the attempt to discern truth, even if that truth be contridicted by the wisdom of the popular media and the experts that surround us.

Rhoda 5-10-2002 20:43


RHODA: Well maybe Johnny Smith is right& maybe Mohammad is right too.
God speaks through people. He could speak through the homeless man who hangs out at the railway station, and maybe only gets heard by the other homeless guys that hang out there, but that might be enough.

Why would you say you don't believe what was revealed to Mohammad.

God sees things getting out of hand and contacts Mohammad to get him to put the word round.
It's like dismissing God's letter because you prefer what was written in the previous one better.

Did God give Christianity it's name? Did God give Islam it's name? I don't think so.
God just said what he wanted us to hear, it was man who decided to label things and by doing so to seperate and divide God's message.

ELAINE: I haven't a clue to any of the answers to your quiz, but if I keep on reading I'm bound to find out :-)

But is that stuff what's important, or is that the details that I have been speaking of? The ones that aren't important or relevant to what God speaks.
You can know your bible back to front, you can know what word the Ephraimites couldn't pronounce, or how many provinces Ahasuerus ruled, but if you tip some oil down your drain, toss a bit of paper out your car window, swear at your mother (even if it's under your breath), if you've taken that extra change handed to you by a daydreaming checkout girl, been mean to a child, ignored a beggar then you have sinned. You have gone against the very core of the message of God.

So it's all very well knowing the fine print, so long as the big print isn't ignored along the way.

And I'll be back............:-D

Teekay 5-10-2002 20:05

Chortle, chortle, chortle. Achoo! Chortle ...

Carol 5-10-2002 19:15

It's fiction, not a fricking popularity contest!

5-11-2002 5-10-2002 17:39

Eddie: Glad you don't work with me and if you worked for me....well, that'd be fun! I'd fire you.

Viv 5-10-2002 17:27

Hello everybody. Hope you are all fine on this lovely spring day.
I've been busy with finals at college but I still look in now and again.
I got these by email today and thought you might giggle at a few. Or chortle.....chortle would be good too.

Things You'd Love to Say at Work, but Can't:

1. I can see your point, but I still think you're full of crap.
2. I don't know what your problem is, but I'll bet it's hard to pronounce.
3. How about never? Is never good for you?
4. I see you've set aside this special time to humiliate yourself in public.
5. I'm really easy to get along with once you people learn to see it my way.
6. I'll try being nicer if you'll try being smarter.
7. I'm out of my mind, but feel free to leave a message.
8. I don't work here. I'm a consultant.
9. It sounds like English, but I can't understand a word you're saying.
10. Ahhhh ... I see the screw-up fairy has visited us again.
11. I like you. You remind me of myself when I was young and stupid.
12. You are validating my inherent mistrust of strangers.
13. I have plenty of talent and vision. I just don't give a damn.
14. I'm already visualizing the duct tape over your mouth.
15. I will always cherish the initial misconceptions I had about you.
16. Thank you. We're all refreshed and challenged by your unique point of
17. The fact that no one understands you doesn't mean you're an artist.
18. What am I? Flypaper for freaks!?
19. I'm not being rude. You're just insignificant.
20. It's a thankless job, but I've got a lot of Karma to burn off.
21. Yes, I am an agent of Satan, but my duties are largely ceremonial.
22. And your crybaby whiny-ass opinion would be ... ?
23. Do I look like a people person?
24. This isn't an office. It's Hell with fluorescent lighting.
25. I started out with nothing and still have most of it left.
26. Sarcasm is just one more service we offer.
27. If I throw a stick, will you leave?
28. Errors have been made. Others will be blamed.
29. Whatever kind of look you were going for, you missed.
30. I'm trying to imagine you with a personality.
31. A cubicle is just a padded cell without a door.
32. Can I trade this job for what's behind door #1?
33. Too many freaks, not enough circuses.
34. Nice perfume. Must you marinate in it?
35. Chaos, panic & disorder, my work here is done.
36. How do I set a laser printer to stun?
37. I thought I wanted a career, turns out I just wanted paychecks.

Eddie 5-10-2002 15:53

Teekay: In Matthew 15: 21-28 gives the account of what you were describing in your post. When the woman was begging Jesus to heal her daughter, he told her that he was sent only to the lost sheep of Isreal and when the woman asked again for help Jesus replied that it wasn't right to take bread away from the children and give it to the dogs. When she replied with 'but even the dogs eat the crumbs that fall from their masters' tables' she was demonstrating her faith in him. Jesus knew this and said "Woman, you have great faith! Your request is granted." And then her daughter was healed.
When Jesus replied the first time, he was explaining to her that the time to preach to the Gentiles hadn't come yet, though note that he didn't say, "I will not preach to you because it's not time yet." The second time that he replied Jesus was explaining that the Jews were the chosen people of Jehovah, the old Testament God (Jehovah and God are the same God with different names). He was also testing her. When we pray we don't always get answered right away like we would like it or God says no when we ask for something. If he is telling us not yet, if we keep praying for it over and over again, God will grant us that petition if it won't lead us away or harm our spiritual wellbeing (or physical well-being). By answering Jesus that way she was saying, "Yes, I know I don't deserve to have my request granted but I have faith that you can do it." As for Jesus' last statement, he commended her on her faith and healed her daughter as a reward. Since this woman was a Caaninite, the Jews rarely associated with them, because of an idiotic fear that they or their faith would be tainted by them. That was why Jesus was ignoring her request and saying things that sounded like he was disapproving of her. Sorry for taking so much space on this topic. If it's one thing I know how to do besides writing it's learning and knowing Scripture. Look at some of these questions and see if you can answer them.
1) Over how many provinces did Ahasuerus or Xerxes rul, according to the book of Esther? (Esther 1:1)
2) What word could the Ephraimites not pronounce? (Judges 12:6)
3) What is the last object mentioned in the Bible? (Revelation 22:19)
4) In ancient Isreal what was signified when one man gave his shoe to another? (Ruth 4:7)
And 5) In the last verse of Genesis, what object is mentioned for the first and only time in the Bible? (Genesis 50:26)
I hope you have all enjoyed Elaine's mini Bible quiz! The references give you the answers and if you're not sure, I can give you the answers later.
Till Niagara Falls!

Elaine 5-10-2002 12:34

Rhoda, I think you are dashingly wise. And funny - you clean your house the same way I do! Hours away from the whole family visiting, I finally look around, gasp with fright, and try to pull off a completely clean and well-organized look; sweating my shirt through, wishing I'd started a week earlier.
Okay, so perhaps we are not wise in the ways of housecleaning. It's not the end of the world, though my mother and her white glove test might prove me wrong!

I love the religious discussions, but have nothing intelligent to add at the moment. Aren't you SO glad I said that??

Heather 5-10-2002 10:10

Regarding Abraham and Islam, what you say is true, but to call Abraham the father of Islam is to imply that if he were alive today, he would approve of it. Abraham founded nothing really, not even Judism. He was only a man who talked to God and with whom God made a covenant. Noah who lived centuries before Abraham was also such a man. If you really want to get technical, God founded Judism.

Is what Mohammad says is true? I personally do not believe so, but there are over one billion people who would beg differ with me. But if I believed Mohammad, then why not believe Joseph Smith who claims to have found gold tablets which the angel Gabriel interpreted for him. Joeseph Smith also claimed that the Church of Jesus Christ had been corrupted throughout the centuries and his was a better revelation. If I believe Mohammad that would make me a Moslem and if I believed Joseph Smith, then I could be a Mormon. Can I believe them both and be both?

The basis of faith is "what do you really believe and who do you believe?" And everyone ought to weigh it carefully because their imortal soul depends upon it.

Personally I don't believe that the original gospel needed to be improved upon. I don't believe Mohommad and I don't believe Joseph Smith. And if I went into these reasons, I would be posting all day, and I simply don't have the time for that, and I doubt anyone here would have the patience for it.

And the Jews and Christians worship the same God, but the Allah Moslems worship is different. And I won't explain that here on the Notebook. If anyone desires further clarification, e-mail me.

I have the carpet cleaner man coming over today and I have to show this house this afternoon. I have worked my tail off for over two weeks and I have yet to be anywhere near finished. Selling houses is a pain. Housekeeping is a pain. If I had been doing my housekeeping like a good stay at home mom, I wouldn't be in the fix I am. But while I could have been dusting and cleaning out closets, I wrote my Scottish novel and I posted here on the Notebook.

Pray, Teekay. Pray and ask God to show you what is right and true. And I will be praying for you to, my friend.

Rhoda 5-10-2002 8:40


RHODA: Just one more thing, and I'm not being narky, I'm seriously interested.

What if Mohammad's message from Gabriel was the last and true message from God?

You wrote:

The Jews and the Christians had also received revelations through the prophets Moses and Jesus, but those words got corrupted by mankind.

And now, thanks to a lot of radicals the word of Islam is being corrupted.

So do you believe that the message to Mohammad was the last true message?

Have you read the Koran?

Personally, I'm still kicking my way through the bible, I've also started reading the Koran, I'm also dipping into writings from the Mormons, and there's been other reaading I've been doing on near death experiences.

Not long ago on TV I saw a woman in Mexico, I think it was, who had Jesus speak through her. She was filmed going through the stigmata.
Now the guy who interviewed her is a reporter from here who is very trustworthy and I do believe that what was filmed was totally true,
and you know what?
It was like nobody even cared.
Isn't that wierd? It's like people had either seen it all or put it down to special effects or something, it was just so bizarre.

It made me think that if Jesus appeared today in the middle of the street and asked someone for a dollar, they'd probably tell him to get a a job or something.

I don't know what it is, but it's like people in Australia have totally lost their spirituality and have just become so materialistic, and that's really sad.

I'm not sure what it's like in America, maybe Sept. 11th has renewed faith in some people, of course there are those who'd always had faith.

Personally, I believe utterly in God.

Teekay 5-10-2002 4:44


You know one thing I find to be really interesting is that Christianity, Judism, Islam all look to the same God, they all advocate the same message of love and peace, but somehow people get all tangled up in the fine print of who did what and who said what and where and when.

For instance, look at the divisions within Christianity itself. There are so many different sects because each have a different interpretation of the bible. They grapple with the small stuff and fail to see the big picture, or else they read their own interpretations into it.

One thing that interests me about the bible and makes me feel that man cannot help but put his own mark upon it is one part where some woman from some other place asks Jesus to heal her daughter, and according to the disciples Jesus sad something like why should I help you, I'm here to help my own people and she said 'but even dogs get to eat the scraps from their masters table'.

Somehow this just doesn't sit right with me. I'm thinking that maybe the disciples being, well, men, and not very into women's liberation or anything, may have decided that this is what he must have said, or should have said, and put it in their writings.

DID YOU KNOW that Mohammad tried to allow for women's freedoms and the care of widows and orphans, but was given a very hard time by the rest of the population?

Seems to me that maybe Islam isn't so bad and maybe not that much removed from Christianity, only that there are far too many radicals and desperate people with not much to lose who misinterpret it into what they wish, much like Christianity at one stage, and make it look really bad in the eyes of the rest of the world.

I just LERV these theological conversations :-D

Teekay 5-10-2002 4:18

Thank God some one had the balls to tell the truth...
And for all those who disagree, educate yourselves...You have access to the internet for god's sake.
I've followed the economic history of alot of south american countries and from what I know there is still alot that hasn't been brought to light.
What about Kissenger's involvment in Brazil. He was nothing more than a lizard....

Marcinha 5-10-2002 4:06


RHODA: Without Abraham there would be no Islam, therefore, it is due to Abraham's fathering Hagar's son that eventually Mohommad came upon the scene and Islam was born.
No Abraham - no Islam.

Teekay 5-10-2002 4:02


Well some better news today in Bethlehem's church of the nativity, but still doubt it would deter any of the violence

Taylor 5-10-2002 2:30

Interesting reading dear people, and well written. My own thoughts run in circles. Wondering where I can find an answer to worlds sorrows because I care, and weeping at the thought that there may be no answer acceptable to all.

Carol 5-10-2002 1:49

Just took a peek at the notebook, lots of reading there, but I don't have time for the novella's yet, will get to them tomorow.

I was fit to be tied, my damn computer started crashing every few minutes. Backed up some of the more important stuff and reformated, thinking I had a virus or some such thing, but it didn't help.

Put my XP disk in with the intention of installing a "Stable" OS, but it stopped in the middle saying there was a hardware problem.

I know the motherboard was acting up but with the new keyboard and mouse it should be ok. I was about ready to trash the whole thing, when I decided as a last resort to install windows 98. Got it installed but it crashed. Wonderful thing about 98, it tells you why, unlike XP or ME.

It said I had a memory error.

Pulled out my fancy expensive 256 meg simm, replaced it with an old 64 meg and two old 32 megs, and it came back to life, working fine now with half the ram but twice the number of sticks.

Guess I'll be seeking some more ram, gotta have lots of that you know.

Well maybe not, but I WANT lots of that.

Nite all.

Jerry 5-10-2002 0:43

Just found some typos. 1) One of our best crowds were out OF the country. 2) made fun of US as we passed on and 3) take out the 'the' in 'no longer have the breath in my body.' Sorry again about such a long post, I had to write my opinion and it's been something that has been running around in circles in my little sore head, so thank you all for bearing with me when I go on a writing opinionated spurge.
Till Niagara Falls!

Elaine 5-9-2002 23:58

Back from my 'exile'. (then of course I'm out of school!)
RANDALL: Funny as it may sound, I can't agree with you. I'm not sick of the Palestinians, what I'm really sick of is the mentioning and rementioning of Sept. 11th. As forever as I shall live I will never forget when I found out or the tear-streaked face of my best friend sitting next to me in chapel. My question is: do we have to be reminded of it every where we go? Even when I think of that day, my eyes fill with tears and I want to sit in my room and cry for hours. I'm not trying to say that September 11 didn't effect me, and I'm not saying that the Palestinians were right to do such a thing, but how can we ever hope for peace if we keep digging up what is now in the past? We are in a healing time for our people and not just our people or US citizens but people all over the world. Even if the majority of the Palestinians were out in the streets cheering the terrorists attack, not all of them are like that. They are a people whose life style is slowly being eradicated and they can see that. So they attach to themselves to radicals in their country while the world watches on condenming them because those same radicals are trying to give them hope. Hope that their people will remain on the earth a little longer, hope is one of the greatest things in the universe. Hope is what gets you out of bed in the morning, or gets you excited when you are looking forward to something. Hope is what drives the human race on forward through life. Life without hope, isn't life. There is hope while you're still living, there can be no hope where there is death. I'm not trying to disagree with everything that you say, because most of what you said is very true, so don't try to see this post as something I'm using to rip on you, because I'm not trying to. But instead of dwelling on what bad came out of that single tragedy, what about the good? The United States of America was united once again in a way I have never seen it before in my life. (not that I've lived a very long one,). September 11 put us as a country back on track. We were slipping backward and losing our grip on our nationality and our sense of loyalty of America. Now I'm not saying that all were losing appreciation of our country. I remember thinking about all the other places in Africa or India and even Palestine that people were dying of starvation and facing a future that was bleak and then thinking that here in America, I could still accomplish my dreams, that I had the luxury of going to a wonderful school with wonderful friends who loved and cared about me as I loved and cared about them. There were times when I was marching that the band would maybe stop for a few minutes on the parade route and people around us would be laughing at us while we tried to make their summer vacations or their Fourth of July's better for them. They would bet on which one of us would move first out of line and would bait us with money so that we would fall out of formation. Thankfully, not all the people who were there were like that. The others would be cheering and waving their American flags and it gave the band heart, strength and courage to keep on marching, even if it was hot in the uniforms that we were wearing or if we were out of step when we marched or if our instruments were getting to heavy for us to go on. Of all the places I went on tour, the best crowd that we had as a band would either have to be Windsor/Chathom in Ontario or Pittsfield, Massachutes. It was sad for me to realize that out of the 15 parades that we marched, one of our best crowds was out the country. The Canadians were great though, instead of the traditional Canadian flags somehow they had managed to get American flags. I was proud of my country even if we had those ones who made fun of as we passed on. I'm still proud of my country and I will support her until I no longer have the breath in my body. My point is that, now, after 9/11, I'm betting that none of those people making wisecracks last year would dare do that this year, because their sense of patriotism has taken a turn for the better.
All right, I think I've babbled on incohorantly long enough. I'm sure all of you have much better time than to listen to me talk on and on and on and on and on (etc, etc, etc.)
Till Niagara Falls!

Elaine 5-9-2002 23:50


Abraham is NOT the father of Islam. Mohammad is. Abraham lived in about 2200 B.C. while Mohammad lived in the 7th century A.D. Mohummad invented his religion under the inspiration of the angel Gabriel who dictated the Koran to him. It is true as Howard says that Arabs are descended from Abraham. It says so in the Bible, and the Arabs have always accepted this connection even before Mohammad. Mohammad believed that what Gabriel gave him was God's final and perfect revelation to mankind. The Jews and the Christians had also received revelations through the prophets Moses and Jesus, but those words got corrupted by mankind.

Much of modern Islam comes not only from the Koran but a collection of teachings and quotes attributed to Mohummad and written down after his death by his associates.

Judiasm, Christianity, and Islam do claim similar roots and a connection to Abraham, but there are great differences in all of them. Mohammad's first wife was a wealthy Jewish woman who ran the family business while Mohammad went out to the desert to meditate. No doubt Mohummad studied Judiasm before Gabriel set him straight about it all.

Rhoda 5-9-2002 22:26

TEEKAY -- Abram was indeed the father of Ishmael by Sarah's handmaid Hagar, because they did not trust God to fulfil His promise to make of Abram a mighty nation. It's found in Genesis chapter 16, and verse 12 is very interesting -- it says that Ishmael (the father of the Arab -- and Palestinian -- people) "will be a wild man; his hand will be against every man, and every man's hand against him; and he shall dwell in the presence of all his brethren."
Then later, Abram's name was changed by God to Abraham (father of many nations) and he fathered (by Sarah) Isaac, the progenitor of the Jewish nation. You can read it all in Genesis, chapters 16-22.

Howard 5-9-2002 21:33

harry potter couldnt carry frodos breechclout!

5-9-2002 21:11


I agree with the horrible sight of Palestinians cheering and laughing about the Murder of 3000+ civillian lives.
About people trying to do their everyday thing.
Certain images from those days are still in my head. Unfortunately that was one of them

Frankly with people Im sick of defending Military action here and there... I keep saying Im not going to. But I alway finding myself doing so.

Another thing that gets up my nose, is people who use the theory that a plane did not hit the Pentagon, and then dont defend their statement

MidEast: I know Israel has got to defend themselves against Homocide Bombers... I can never support an army or people who would permit the use of Homocide Bombers. Israel seemed to have gone too far in my book.
And what happened in Jenin? They didnt let in Factfinding mission. And Palestinians tried to say the number of deaths were extremely high.
So I just find myself asking... Why should I be caring? I dont like the Murder of civillians of course.

Sorry about the depressing post... Guess I needed to post my view.
But I too have been praying for Peace and ceasefires in the MidEast... and i thought it was on the way. But no. And I am fed up. I know thats a selfish attitude

Taylor 5-9-2002 20:33

Allein: Reading Harry Potter is absolutely not dorky. In fact I tell folks that haven't read Harry Potter that they are dorks. We "discovered" Harry before the grownups got involved in all the publicity hype. Way back then I was telling folks they were dorks not to read children's books because some of them had the potential to really get people talking. I told one hyper businessman who snorted at my "plebian taste" that he was a dork that didn't know markets. I still snicker thinking about that remark. I was right!

Viv 5-9-2002 20:23


Good evening...

Well... I expected to receive a lot of grief over my post last night. Maybe before 9/11 I would have been trounced...and rightly so. But the sight of thoes planes smashing into the World Trade Center Towers has, I suppose, changed all our thinking. I'll never forget a scene showed on TV that dark night. A blonde woman in a red dress falling from the top of one tower. She was falling on her back, arms outstretched as if sleeping...I can only pray she was already with God.


I came across this today and well FYI... It's taken from National Review-Online. Does it make me an orge to believe what Mr. Derbyshore says?

"John Derbyshire, NRO Columnists


The options as I see them.

Why don't I care about the Palestinians? It is, of course, wrong of me not to care. It can't be much fun being a Palestinian. You, or your parents, or your grandparents, ran for their lives in the 1948 war. You — and/or they, plus a couple of generations of uncles, aunts, siblings, and cousins — have been huddled in some squalid refugee camp ever since, living off UNRWA handouts. ("UNRWA," by the way, stands for "U.S. taxpayer." But you knew that!) There is no economy worth participating in. Your leaders won a fragmented, halfway sort of autonomy for you at Oslo; but it didn't work, you're not sure why. Nothing really got any better, and now the Israelis have smashed it all up anyway. The other Arabs all hate you (a little-known factor of Middle East political life, but one attested by my colleague David Pryce-Jones, who knows the Arabs better than anyone). Things look bad, and you are sunk in despair. Shouldn't I feel sorry for you?

Sure, I personally favor Israel in this conflict. That's my right as a freethinking person. I'm a Christian, though, aren't I? Shouldn't I have some Christian compassion to spare for the poor suffering Palestinians? Ask not for whom the bell tolls, etc., etc.

Well, I suppose I should, but to be honest about it, I don't. Why not? Why don't I care about the Palestinians? The answer is NOT any of the following.

I like taking showers with Jews.
Palestinians have dark skin and I'm a racist.
My name was originally Derbstein.
My British blood is boiling with shame over the lost empire.
I am a lackey of, or am trying to ingratiate myself with, the Jews who run the U.S. media.
I am a cruel, hard-hearted bigot.

The answer isn't exactly compassion fatigue, either. That's pretty close

I am aware of a certain level of compassion fatigue in regard to the world at large, and it spills over into the Palestinian issue. The other day I had the depressing experience of reading, one right after the other, Stephen Kotkin's wonderfully titled "Trashcanistan" in the April 15th New Republic, then Helen Epstein's "Mozambique: In Search of the Hidden Cause of AIDS" in the May 9th New York Review of Books. The first of these was a long portmanteau review of six books about the fates of various components of the old U.S.S.R. in the years since the thing fell apart. The second tries to discover why a sleepy rural area of Mozambique, populated by courteous folk practicing a traditional way of life, has high levels of AIDS.

Kotkin's account of the ex-Soviet colonies — Ukraine, Moldova, the central Asian and Caucasian republics, etc. — is hair-raising. Principal features of the landscape here are utter economic collapse, "gangland violence among state ministers," rising Islamofascism and the flight of large sectors of the population. (One-third of the able-bodied workforce of Moldova has fled. I have just been reading another report about that wretched country. Sample quote: "Experts estimate that since the fall of the Soviet Union between 200,000 and 400,000 women have been sold into prostitution — perhaps up to 10 percent of the female population.") Kotkin writes beautifully about this appalling situation, which stretches across the entire southern and western marches of the old U.S.S.R., illuminating his account with memorable one-liners like: "Ukraine has gotten its state and is eating it, too."

Helen Epstein's piece on Mozambique tells of a state of affairs just as awful. The fundamental problem, she discovers, is that: "These people are so poor ... that sex has become part of their economy. In some cases, it's practically the only currency they have." The men go away for months on end to work in the South African mines — where, of course, they console themselves with prostitutes. The women left behind survive as best they can, often by becoming the mistresses of the few local men who can actually afford to eat. Why are they all so poor? Because Mozambique has been wrecked by corruption, tribal war and stupid economics.

What a world! You can only read a certain amount of this stuff before you start to avert your eyes. What on earth can anyone hope to do about all this? All the simple explanations for the horrors that stain a large part of our planet have been used up. We now know that it's not the fault of colonialism, or neo-colonialism, or capitalism, or socialism. It's just the way these places are. They can't handle modernity, for some cultural reason we don't understand and can't do anything about.

That's the context in which I see the Palestinians. The Palestinians are Arabs; and the Arabs, whatever their medieval achievements (as best I can understand, they were mainly achievements of transmission — "Arabic" numerals, for example, came from India) are politically hopeless. Who can dispute this? Look at the last 50-odd years, since the colonial powers left. What have the Arabs accomplished? What have they built? Where in the Arab world is there a trace or a spark of democracy? Of constitutionalism? Of laws independent of the ruler's whim? Of free inquiry? Of open public debate? Where in your house is there any article stamped "Made in Syria?" Arabs can be individually very charming and capable, and perform very well in free societies like the U.S.A. There are at least two recent Nobel prizes with Arab names attached. Collectively, though, as nations, the Arabs are no-hopers.

All of this applies to the Palestinians. I spent some of my formative years in Hong Kong, a barren piece of rock with zero natural resources, under foreign occupation, chock-full of refugees from the Mao tyranny. The people there weren't lounging in UNRWA camps or making suicide runs at the governor's mansion. They were trading, building, speculating, manufacturing, working — with the result that Hong Kong is now a glittering modern city filled with well-dressed, well-educated, well-fed people, proud of what they have accomplished together, and with a higher standard of living than Britain herself. If, following the Oslo accords — or for that matter, in the 20 years of Jordanian occupation — the Palestinians had taken that route, had set aside their fantasies of revenge and massacre, and concentrated on building up something worth having, I might have respect for them. As it is, I don't.

The only halfway sympathetic thing I can find to say about the Palestinians is that UNRWA has surely been part of the problem. If you go to the UNRWA website, you will see how proud they are of having fed, clothed, sheltered, educated and cared for the Palestinian refugees of 1948... and their children... and their grandchildren. The number of people UNRWA cares for has gone from 600,000 in 1948 to nearly four million today. Now, I understand that the prime impulse of bureaucracies, especially welfare bureaucracies, is the consolidation and expansion of their turf, and a steady increase in the number of their "clients" but this is ridiculous. The good people of Hong Kong should go down on their knees every night and thank God that there was no UNRWA in the colony in 1949. So, come to think of it, should the German and East European refugees who flooded into Western Europe after WWII. (I have seen the number 14 million somewhere — the Sudeten Germans alone numbered three million. Where are the festering camps? Where are the suicide bombers?)

Even if their lives had not been poisoned by the ministrations of a huge welfare bureaucracy, though, I doubt the Palestinians would have got their act together. None of the other Arabs have. Everywhere you look around the Arab world you see squalor, despotism, cruelty, and hopelessness. The best they have been able to manage, politically speaking, has been the Latin-American style one-party kleptocracies of Egypt and Jordan. Those are the peaks of Arab political achievement under independence, under government by their own people. The norm is just gangsterism, with thugs like Assad, Qaddafi, or Saddam in charge. It doesn't seem to be anything to do with religion: the secular states (Iraq, Syria) are just as horrible as the religious ones like Saudi Arabia. These people are hopeless. We are all supposed to support the notion of a Palestinian state. Why? We know perfectly well what it would be like. Why should we wish for another gangster-satrapy to be added to the Arab roll of shame, busy manufacturing terrorists to come here and slaughter Americans in their offices? I don't want to see a Palestinian state. I think I'd be crazy to want that.

What, actually, are the possible futures for the Palestinians? I think the following list is exhaustive.

1. An independent state, under Arafat or someone just as thuggish.
2. Military occupation by Israel.
3. Re-incorporation into a Jordanian-Palestinian nation.
4. Some sort of U.N. trusteeship.
5. Expulsion from the West Bank and Gaza, those territories then incorporated into Israel.

Number 1 is what we are all supposed to want. As I have already indicated, I don't want it, and I can't see why anyone else would, either. Except Palestinians, I suppose: If they yearn to be ruled by amoral hoodlums (as, according to polls, they apparently do), I suppose they have some theoretical right to see their wishes fulfilled — but why should the rest of us allow it to happen, given the dangers to us? Number 2 might work for a time, but the Israelis would eventually get fed up with it, and then we'd move on to one of the other options. Number 3 would get us back to the pseudo-stability of pre-1967, but is deeply unpopular with Jordanians — and look what happened in 1967! Number 4 undoubtedly has the UNRWA bureaucrats drooling, but as with number 1, it's hard to see what's in it for the rest of us. Aren't we handing over enough of our money in welfare payments to our own people?

Which leaves us with number 5: expulsion. I am starting to think that this might be the best option. I'm not the only one, either. Here is Dick Armey, Republican leader in the U.S. House of Representatives, talking to Chris Matthews on Hardball:

MATTHEWS: Well, just to repeat, you believe that the Palestinians who are now living on the West Bank should get out of there?

Rep. ARMEY: Yes.

When I say "the best option," I don't mean "best for the Palestinians". I don't think they have any good options. Being Arabs, they are incapable of constructing a rational polity, so their future is probably hopeless whatever happens. Their options are the ones I listed above: to be ruled by gangsters, or Israelis, or Jordanians, or welfare bureaucrats. Or to go live somewhere else, under the gentle rule of their brother Arabs. Would expulsion be hard on the Palestinians? I suppose it would. Would it be any harder than options 1 thru 4? I doubt it. Do I really give a flying falafel one way or the other? No, not really.

Mr. Derbyshire is also an NR contributing editor"

Like I said my friends...FYI


Randall 5-9-2002 20:00


I found out yesterday that Abraham was the founder of Judism and also of Islam.

Well I thought that was REALLY interesting.

When I informed hubby of my new found wisdom he looked at me strangely and then said; "You are so extreme, sometimes you are so boring, and other times you're a total nutter."
That's gotta be love, right?

JERRY: Never doubted for a moment that it was true, but I did remember a story you wrote when an aspect of that was worked into it.

am I?


Teekay 5-9-2002 19:56

I have to maintain 'radio' silence because I'm not allowed on the computers till tomorrow.
Till Niagara Falls!

Elaine 5-9-2002 12:19

Incidently, Arafat was never one of those who believed in peace. He B. S,' ed through all the so called peace process. If there is to be any meaningful settlement over there (and I personally believe it is too late for that), Arafat must go, and so maybe should Sharon. How can you broker peace with a group that supports suicide bombing and teaches little children to be murderers? Israel has not been lily white in all this either, but if they will not defend themselves, they WILL be destroyed.

I will never forget those pictures of the Palastinians dancing in the streets in celebration after the World Trade Center and the Pentagon were bombed.

Rhoda 5-9-2002 10:37


I happen to agree with you. Let them fight it out. They will anyway. All anyone else can do is try to forestall the inevitable. The tragic thing is that there were people on both sides, Israeli and Palastinian who desired peace and tried with all their might. Sadly these voices of reason and compassion who believed that Palastinians and Israelies could live together in peace have been silenced.


I still pray it won't happen.

Rhoda 5-9-2002 10:30


Since somebody other than I brought up MidEast Conflict, I feel its safe to add my two bobs worth.

I was disheartened over the latest Homocide Bombings on Tuesday... And it seems that Palestinians and Israel are never going to like each other.
My opinion... Let them slug it out, and when they both approach America or UN to help out with Peacetalks or a ceasefire then talk with them.
Otherwise just back off.

Taylor 5-9-2002 3:01

You may be right Randall, I hope not, but you may.

I don't think your the only one thinking that way, right now as I type this, the Discovery Channel is showing the story of Eichman, from his begining as a chicken farmer who decided it profitable to hate Jews, to his capture and trial.

Getting us in the proper mood?

Who knows, maybe it's just coincidance.

I do remember back in the '70's ridding in a little Vega Station wagon, the one who's hood looked like the batmobile's, with this Sergant buddy of mine, he opened a cold Coors, and passed it to me, then tipped his while driving down Dyre BLVD in El Paso, when we met a Sheriffs car. I dropped the beer quickly between my legs, in an attempt to hide it, while he simply held it to the windshield as if clicking glasses with the Deputy. I figured we were seconds from the crow bar hotel, but the deputy just smiled and waved.

That's when he told me that in Texas beer is considered a "non-intoxicating" drink and is legal to drink while driving. Being an x cop at the time, I was horrified, but quickly joined in the sport. Happy days those.

Spent the afternoon teaching the telephone guy how to hook up DSL modems, and how to set up the computers for folks. He was at my sisters, and she called, all shook up because he wanted to sell her a hundred dollar router so she could hook up two computers to one DSL modem. I went over and found that the guy was just telling her what his bosses told him. I showed him how to set it up without a router, he was surprised, but happy to see it done. Said he would have to show his bosses my tricks. Got their computres set up for high speed internet, now they can be online and on the phone at the same time. Happy days at their house.

Well bed time, so I'm off.

Write on!

Jerry 5-9-2002 1:06



Jerry...No more drinking beer and driving in Texas. That door was closed years ago. Widely disobeyed though. Weather cold up there? Send it down here. Temps in the 90's, humidity at 65%...miserable. Oh well...

Now something heavy...

I watched Ariel Sharon's press conference last night...and realized we were on the brink of seeing the first actual deployment of nuclear weapons since 1945. I told my son Hell was coming, a Pale Rider al la Clint Eastwood. The countries aligned against Israel have no idea who they are dealing with. Israel will respond with an unimaginable force in the near future. The people of Israel are literally caught between an unyielding intolerance 2,000 years old and the deep blue sea. I listened to Mr. Sharon's opening statement and the hair on my neck prickled. He is going to do exactly what he said. As a nation and as a people the Israelis are in an impossible situation and the ultimate military power will be used.

When it happens, the world will wring their hands and bemoan Israel's barbaric behavior. The Arab terror instigators are like petulant children who have been warned again and again not to tease a chained dog who is minding his own business, in his own yard. When the dog loses patience and responds, the child is shocked and cannot understand why. In bull riding circles at Texas rodeos one often hears..."Mess with the bull and you're gonna get the horn." Jews have been suffering at the hands of the world for 2,000 years. And somehow it is always their fault. Adolph Hitler said it was, and he was a world leader in his time. Right?

I didn't hear of an UN investigating committee trying to enter PLO controlled refugee camps to investigate "alleged" bomb factories after a hundred Israelis (And Arab Israelis as well) were blown apart by misguided homicidal maniacs. Did you? But when the PLO howled massacre last month, wouldn't you know...the UN is Johnny on the spot, pen in hand. Any bets on how impartial the "fact finding committee" would be? There can be no doubt these investigators already had talking points in hand. The Israelis knew better. They, at least, have learned from 2,000 years of persecution. As a matter of course the "massacre" was toned down...by the PLO. Everyone knew the PLO were lying, they knew they were lying and didn't care if everyone knew they were lying.

Israel will likely respond to PLO forces in southern Lebanon with tactical nuclear weapons. But not just there. This "measured response" will include high value targets ... oil fields, weapon depots, military and communication centers, command and control bunkers, airfields, army bases, etc., in Iraq, Syria, Libya, Saudi Arabia. Why the Saudis? Because Saudi rulers (an extended family of more than 5,000 people rule Saudi Arabia) bankroll terror networks. In the last 18 months the Saudi family has given 123 million dollars to the PLO. (That is a matter of record, no telling what was passed under the table.) And that money wasn't all used to buy milk and cookies. 18 of the 25 ... 9/11 hijackers came from Saudi Arabia. Saudi Arabia refused to play a video of Arafat at a recent conference of all Arab countries. The Israelis had Arafat penned up ... the Saudis "controlled" Arafat and refused him a world audience. Saudis blocked an FBI, in country, investigation of the Air Force barracks that were destroyed several years ago. Why? The Saudi's are trying to control a volcano that is brewing under them...Militant Islam. Saudi Arabian leaders are consummate fence sitters, trying to appease America while urging on the destruction of Israel. They maneuver, control, manipulate, and fund anyone that holds a torch to the feet of Israel. And when the chained dog bites, they will be shocked. "Why us?"

Why use a nuclear device on a communication center in downtown Bagdad? Would not a laser controlled 2000 pound bomb suffice? It is not the value of the target so much as Israel's willingness to show the world they are absolutely fed up. Nothing speaks volumes like a mushroom cloud rising over Bagdad. Israel's response will take place with a duration of an hour or so. As a military power IDF is way above average. The destruction of Iraq's nuclear reactor in 1981 took one minute and twenty seven seconds, that is, after a 1500 mile, nail biting, low level flight. Minutes after the preemptive nuclear strike Israel will sue for peace with the nations they attacked. There will be a dangerous interval as officials of the devastated countries ponder their response. It's really a no-brainer though. In the end the Arab countries will agree to a cease fire and the rebuilding begins. Whether there will be a long time peace is up to new leaders. In the time span of 100,000 years of human evolution this "horror" will just be an eye blink in a lifetime.

Randall the prophet or Randall the writer?

I hope Randall the writer. But Arab countries of the Middle East have sown the wind and they will reap the whirlwind.


Randall 5-8-2002 23:30

You know I may have used part of that before, I don't recall but could be. That was true, happened many moons ago when I was the Chief in a little town about sixty miles from here. Those things kind of stick in your mind and come back when thinking of death and dieing.

I think the Native Americans had the right idea, wrap my body in buffalo hides and lay it on a platform high enough that the wolves and coyotes leave it alone so I can see the sun rise and set till my bones fall through the scafolding.

It's the clostrophobic thing that bothers me too, the idea of that small box, then putting six feet of earth on top of it so if I did come to I could never open the lid. The thought of the air getting thinner and thinner till I couldn't breath anymore, of scratching at the top, trying to get out, the darkness, the tightness, not even able to roll over on my side, it's just too much.

Oh well guess when your dead you don't have to roll over.

Jerry 5-8-2002 22:39

TEEKAY -- "Always poo at work..." reminds me of an incident that happened while I was working at IBM. Some (misguided) upper level manager issued an edict that "On Fridays we will not use PROFS (an internal mainframe memo/scheduling system) in order to save money.
Some wag responded that "That's like the Charmin company telling its employees to 'hold it until they get home'"

ALL - please excuse the tupos in my posts of late -- starting to get the same symptoms I had before the neck surgery. Fingers going numb, difficult to type, etc etc. Must be getting old(er). Bummer! Gotta learn to relax!
Oooops! Gotta run -- Dorie just fired up BOGGLE on her computer, and I do love that game!

howard 5-8-2002 21:58


Allein: Enjoy your trip

What I am writing: I have put that other story about the bus on the backburner right now
I wish I knew how to research though... Am writing a war novel thats been in my head for ages just havent put it down on paper.

Taylor 5-8-2002 20:42


Hiya all,

HOWARD: Okay, fine. I don't want to be buried, I don't want to be cremated I just want to be left out in the open until I begin decomposing.

But what if ravens start eating my liver and I'm only in a coma?..............
Oh dear.

That phone conversation got a chuckle out of me :-D

JERRY: You wrote about parts of that incident in a short story a while ago didn't you?
It seems to have lodged it self in my brain, right under my left occipital whatsamethingy.

MEL: 'Run Hillary ru......uh, nevermind'

ALL: Always poo at work. Not only will you save money on toilet paper, but you'll also be getting paid for it.

This is not mine, but you can see with this sort of attitude why the economy is going down the drain - can't you.

Teekay 5-8-2002 20:18


That last post was from me and it should be "'physics" not pyiscis or whatever it blurbled out with these fingers (smiles).

Rachel 5-8-2002 19:36


I've been hearing a lot about virus attacks. It sounds like nasty stuff. A couple of people who are in the class I'm taking had their computers toasted off by virus attacks. That is such a shame.


I've been away to visit my mum. Since our return it has been rush, rush, busy, busy. I've copied the posts and plan to read them over. I look forward to reading about what the lot of you have been up to. I admit that I've been lurking for a week or so, but haven't had the time to read the posts with the attention that I should. As far as my school goes, I ended up in the class I wanted. I got into Anthropology - World Religions. I can't believe I made it in. I was at the top of the wait list, only one person from the wait list made it in, that would be me. Yup, I'm a lucky little duck. It's a good thing that worked out, as the pysicis (astronomy class) was cancelled. Spring semester is freaky. I've got an exam in just over a week. Yikes!

5-8-2002 19:34

BTW -- you can go to www.symantec.com and check the "expanded threat list" to get more info re the KLEZ virus. There's step-by-step instructions (and a program you can download) for removing it.

howard 5-8-2002 19:29

HALLEE -- Very nice web page! Easy to get to, easy to navigate, and easy to read. Ya did good!

LITTER - Thanks! That poem wasn't received well at school. Got stony stares at the reading. Can't please 'em all.

RE KLEZ -- it seems that this beastie doesn't use your email program at all, but carries its own embedded SMTP program. Harder to track that way. My daughter way she's received several infected emails from me in the past two days, even when I'm not home on the machine. Yesterday I disconnected from the network for several hours, and within 5 minutes of reconnecting, she called to say she'd just got another one from me. Yet the Norton virus scan and the FIXKLEZ program both say they can't find any viruses on my machine. I just updated the definitions, even installed an upgraded version of NAV, but still shows clean. It doesn't necessarily use the address book either, but can find an address in any one of several types of files (WORD, MSWORKS, .txt files, etc etc.)It's really getting scary.
As soon as I'm finished with school for the semester, I think I'll either format this disk and start over, or buy a new disk and start from scratch.
I would definitely like to get hold of the creep that invented this thing, and try out some of my most vivid nightmares on him (or her).

Howard 5-8-2002 19:27

This is the kind of illiterate crap that comes with the virus'

Hi,This is a excite game
This game is my first work.
You're the first player.
I expect you would enjoy it.

Don't play computer games, except word games!!!

Virus attack account up to 10 now. Notebook entries up to 3 :o)

Litter Again 5-8-2002 17:44

Seems like the ‘Win32.Klez.H worm’ virus has returned. Update your anti-virus software soonest. Thus far, I have had 8 infected emails sent to me, all different ploys but with the same potential effect. Last time, a couple of months back, I got the princely total of 28 infected emails… Heads up people!

Litter 5-8-2002 17:21

Hi All.

Been a while by I am still alive. (To all intents and purposes) My wife has had some time with friends, chilling out and recovering from her father’s death. Gave me time to do some overdue DIY – a day of DIY and two in bed!!! Hmmm. Did some gardening as well – one on my feet and two on my back…

HORWAD – powerful, powerful, poem and I do like the ‘stall’ story. I see you have gone the whole hog and italicised the notebook as well – Way to go!

I see we have a phantom poster AND an Egyptian God – Welcome Egyptian God!

Seems that I am getting to grips with every other than my writing – that’s got to change…

Have to see if I can get back to the notebook more often as well.

Got to go – the hurrier I do the behinder I get…

Ciao for now,


Litter 5-8-2002 16:27

I FINALLY finished my company's website. This was a total learning experience for me. I had no clue how to even begin, much less finally upload it to the server. So, one step at a time, I figured it out. Here's the link. Let me know what you think.


Hallee CBI 5-8-2002 15:24


Um, okay, HOWARD - I DO NOT want to be cremated! I think I was romanced by the idea of having my ashes flung into the wind over the Grand Canyon or off a cliff near the Pacific Ocean somewhere... Actually, it's the being-enclosed-in-a-box-maybe-still-conscious paranoia either way...

So here's a 3rd alternative for anyone who needs one: when you die, don't be buried, don't be cremated. Have yourself preserved, stuffed and propped in your favorite chair - the family can enjoy your "presence" for many more years! (As long as they don't forget to pack you--on top of the car, of course--if they move...!)

BTW, HOWARD, "camping nightmares are intense" struck my punnybone. Hyuck! :-D And the cell phone story is priceless! :-]

TEEKAY: The "Hillary" of bumper-sticker fame is our last President's wife who chose, nearing the end of her stint in the White House as First Lady, to "run" in the elections for New York State Senator, even though she didn't live in New York State. Thus, the bumper-stickers on the FRONT of our cars encouraging her to "run"... And yes, she's now a NYS senator... somebody didn't drive fast enough, heh heh (hoo boy!)

BTW, TEEK, I love the abbreviated titles guessing game! :-)Lessee, "THOTH" in your closet might be:
The Harbors of the Heart
The Hairy Ostrich Tortures Humans
Two Hands On The Heap
Truly Horrid Omens To Hinder
Take Hackers Off Their Hinges
(Am I getting close?) :-)

Hi, SAMMY and THOTH (the real person, not TK's ms.)! :-)

JERRY, HEATHER, TAYLOR, VIV, ELAINE, and all LURKERS: Hiya. What's everyone writing these days?

ALLEIN: I love HARRY POTTER! May my characters become as well-loved. (But first, to write them regally so they may become eternal!) :-)

Brains to pens, people! Let your imagination flow...

Mel 5-8-2002 14:04

Hey all,
Been lurking. Not much going on here. Been doing a lot of writing. Just finished the 4th Harry Potter book (yeah, I'm a dork).
I'm going to Disneyland in about 2 weeks. :D YAY!!
Guess that's all.

Allein Peachick's Gallery 5-8-2002 12:59

I have had a few nightmares along the way... Recently some not what you would call nightmares, but strong imaged dreams, and strong.
Won't share them though

Taylor 5-8-2002 12:50

For those who want to be cremated to avoid the "premature burial scenario," what happens if you regain consciousness just as the box enters the oven? That would be unpleasant, I think...

howard 5-8-2002 12:49

TEEKAY: Yeah, the weather was great to watch (though I didn't actually see the torandos touch down).
Welcome SAMMY and THOTH! Always glad to see new people, yes I am!
Nightmares, hmm? Well there were a couple that stuck with me, I think. There was one that I was playing in my backyard and all of a sudden a volcano would pop up in the scene right in front of me. I turned around and a river of lava was rushing toward my bare feet. I turned and ran towards the house but I was only about 3 feet tall and the lava flow was catching up with my unprotected little heels. I would make it to my house just in time to beat the lava, only to find out that my house had been taken over by dinosaurs. A T-rex would look around in kitchen, sniffing around the corner where I was hiding. Raptors would be standing on the kitchen counter where I could see the teeth and some drool falling in a puddle in front of my trembling feet. Then it would start all over again, but I would try to run before the volcano would pop up and I'd try to hide somewhere else and trick the dinosaurs.
Then of course there was the one that I was on a plain with a couple of other people and dinosaurs would come, panicking as a couple of T-rex's tried to eat them, we would run with the dinosaurs when we would come upon a shack, (a very unsturdy shack) and we would hide underneath the porch steps and hope that a T-rex wouldn't step on our puny shelter.
And not to mention the one that I took a walk outside while my parents, brothers, sisters, grandparents, aunts, uncles, and great-grandparents were inside the house while a humongous cockroach came. It had a poisenous touch, so if it touched you, you died. So my relatives were killed in the house while I watched helplessly from the apple tree that I climbed. Then I ran across the neighborhood trying to escape the army of over-sized, poisenous cockroaches which were chasing me. Then I started flying across the neighborhood and just as I was about to get away, it would start over except when I tried to warn my relatives, they wouldn't believe me and when I was running I could not for the life of me figure out how I flew before, because I couldn't anymore. It was so frustating! The first two nightmares I got from the compliments of Jurassic Park and an over-imaginative little girl's mind. the other one I don't know what made up that one unless it was my own imagination. Strange how dreams work out.
Oh, well, I hope y'all might have a good laugh about me 'nightmares' (they don't bother me anymore thankfully) and sorry about such a long post!
Till Niagara Falls!

Elaine 5-8-2002 12:20


Interesting nightmare Viv.
Can I share one of mine...

*This one I thought I was awake*
I laid in bed. I opened my eyes and the first thing I saw was this spider descending from the roof right in front of my face. So I did what any Arachnaphobic would do and that was to use my hands underneath the blanket to knock the spider away.
*Then I woke up*
Got straight out of bed, heart racing and panting a little, slung the bedding off looking for that darn spider. Until I realised I had been dreaming.

Taylor 5-8-2002 11:57

Jerry: That was some very disgusting writing! Well written though. It definitely took the idea of nightmares one step further.

Howard: That was funny! I still find cell phones a little strange.

Exhaustion setting in. Wanted to talk about my latest nightmare that actually stuck with me because it was so strange and kind of funny.

I was in a person's rather shabby room with my daughter. We were getting something that had been done for us. We had to pay for the service but the person who had done the work was not there. I put the money on the table. Then we left. We came back again in a couple of weeks and the money was still on the table. We apparently took something that was made for us so we needed to pay again. I looked at the money we'd left before and thought to myself, "does this person actually care if we pay?"

At that point my daughter pointed to a huge cockroach. It ran into a cupboard. I went after it with the idea of crushing it. I opened the cupboard and saw about 100 roaches of the same size. *( the roaches I'm talking about here are the big hissing Asian cockroaches which grow to be about as big as the palm of your hand.)

For some reason I started stamping like I was marching. The cockroaches obediently lined up and began marching around the room in pairs. I thought, "Pretty nifty, this guy has trained his roaches!"

They finished their little roach parade then headed back into the cupboard in an orderly manner. I thought for just a second and said, "You know, he never took the money from the time before. Do you think we should pay again?"

At that point the roaches all came out of the cupboard and made a circle around my feet. I thought, "Yup, better be darned sure to pay. This guy TRAINED these roaches and I don't want to find out what happens if you don't pay!"

I woke up thinking, "Wow, that'd be something ...I wonder if we could train cockroaches to do housework."

Roach dreams. That's a sure sign of rainy season isn't it!

Viv 5-8-2002 10:40


I want to be cremated

Waking Nightmares: Yeah had one like that recently, could not get the images out of my head for ages...
I am thankful I have a dreamdiary though

Taylor 5-8-2002 4:53

Just thought Id pop in and say hi. Studying for finals (or at least that's what Im supposed to be doing)but I'm just drawn to the computer.
Though there is a sea of computers around me, with people concentrarting on their work, I sit here writing my thoughts down.
Writing draws people in, it connects people, it frees people.

Sammy 5-8-2002 2:45

I have considered cremation. It does sound like a good idea, but I have this fear of fire...

There was this kid, he was 18, and hooked on drugs. His parents disowned him because of the drugs, and the crimes he did to keep his habit going. Things like burglery and shoplifting were his thing, and he was fairly good at it, we only caught him a couple of times. At any rate one day he must have decided that the drugs were'nt what he needed, and with nobody to turn to, he decided to end it all.

He cleaned his house so not a speck of dirt was anywhere to be seen. He took a large American flag and draped it over his bed, then crawled into one of those large green trash bags, then pulled another over his head, and using a flashlight, carefully taped the two together with duct tape. When he was sure it was properlly sealed, he opened two cans of F12 refrigerant (Freon) and died.

Now that kept the room clean, but it also made his discovery something that took quite some time. After two months of no rent, the land lord called us, and we entered the apartment. The first hint that there was something wrong came from the smell something like propane that permeated the appartment. A check of the cook stove showed it was off, as was the furnace. We entered his bedroom, and at first didn't notice anything amiss, until I walked over to the far side of the bed and discovered the package.

When we opened it, knowing what it must contain, the smell was horrid, Ann, my lady officer who happened to be on duty that day made her way to the bathroom and lost her lunch.

The body had decomposed, but sealed as it was in the bag, it turned into some sort of green slime, it was barely recognizable as human, much less the kid that sat across the desk from me so many times answering questions about his illegal action.

For a monent or two, I almost felt sorry for him.

Jerry 5-8-2002 1:22

This just in from my S.I.L. -

`I left Montreal on route 20 heading toward Quebec City, when
I decided to stop at a comfort station. The first toilet stall
was occupied, so I went into the second one. I was no sooner
seated than I heard a voice from the next stall: "Hi, how are
you doing?"
`Well, I am not the type to chat with strangers in highway
comfort stations, and I really don't know quite what possessed
me, but anyway, I answered, a little embarrassed: "Not bad." And
the stranger said: "And, what are you up to?"
Talk about your dumb questions! I was really beginning to
think this was too weird! So I said: "Well, just like you I am
driving east?" Then, I heard the stranger, all upset, say: "Look,
I'll call you right back, there is some idiot in the next stall
answering all the questions I am asking you. Bye!"

howard 5-7-2002 22:19


THOTH: What a coincidence! I have a work in the back of the wardrobe abbreviated to THOTH.
No monsters in my wardrobe, well, not as you'd imagine them to be, but what lurks within gives me shivers up the spine and fills my heart with dread, and now it is not enough to haunt me from the dark confines of that cluttered closet, but comes forth in virtual form to remind me of dreams buried beneath apathy and scuffy shoes.

HOWARD: Of course it is the minority that recognise great art and wisdom when they see it. If everybody were able to, the world would probably be a less discontented place.
BTW: I'm holding you to the dedication.
BTOW: Go Oprah is just me being enthusiastic about Oprah. As I haven't been writing much I've been tuning into Oprah. How much I've missed :-D
Why did people want Hilary to run? Were they going to run her over?

ELAINE: That weather you're having sounds pretty exciting.

Gotta go.

Teekay 5-7-2002 22:12

OOps! :-(

howard 5-7-2002 21:47

MEL -- hope your muse doesn't keep you awake! Nightmares can be intense (I've had them while camping, too)...

intense -- camping -- oh well...

anyway, as I was saying typing, they can be brutal!
Have you ever had a "waking" nightmare? You know you're awake, but you can't get the nightmare out of your mind! The one about being trapped gets me once in a while like that, and there's one about seeing a small person (or myself) caught in one of those wood chippers that terrifies me. Sometimes I think it's like being on the edge of insanity, and slipping over the line for just a moment, and struggling to get back. "Please God help me wake up!" is the feeling.
Have you ever read Edgar Allen Poe's "The Casque of Amontillado?" Now there's< a buried alive tale that will cause you a sleepless night or two! Then there's "The Premature Burial."
I know I'm going to have nightmares tonight myself!
Woops! Norton wants to reboot my machine -- I've been cleaning up virus stuff (didn't find any) and that can be a nightmare in itself!
See ya -- I hope...

howard 5-7-2002 21:46

P.S. Thoth: Advice on copyrights should also be in the WMarket. :o)

Heather 5-7-2002 21:02

Thoth - emailed you some advice - :oD

Hey everyone! I've been lurking!
Teek, Hallee, awesome to see you both posting.

This is my 'middle of the night' week, so if I aim for cohesive and get somewhat blurred but still sensical, I apologize a wee bit. ;oP

Great to see religion being batted about the park. I've been good, keeping behind the lines as a spectator...

Oh, and thanks Hallee - drywall dust has settled, but the proverbial dust hasn't!

Winkity winks, friends,
I've got to be puttin' the kids to bed.
If your ink runs dry, spit on the nib ~

Heather 5-7-2002 21:01

Me again sorry I forgot my email address. thoth_45@yahoo.com
Also one more question when is the easiest and best time to register my copyright? before or after I submit and possibly get published?

Thoth 5-7-2002 18:17

I need help! I need to know where to send my short stories to. I am a very new author and not having much lucc. could someone please send me a list of short story fantasy publishers?

Thoth 5-7-2002 18:16


Hi, Peoples! I admit I've been lurking... Thanks to JERRY and HOWARD for poking my muse in the ribs...

JERRY: That "buried alive" fear is engrained in many of us, I think.

(Yeah, TEEKAY - let's get cremated, AFTER we die of course, as you said!) :-)

HOWARD: Recurring nightmares...oh, goody! My muse awoke when JERRY mentioned afterlife questions, and she sat up
when you opened the box of nightmare memoirs! I think my muse must be in macabre mood. No wonder I haven't heard her lately - I don't like to go down that spooky road too often!! ;-]

Beyond the fear of being buried with part of my consciousness still active, I rate as #1 my childhood nightmare of being chased by a driverless car (thanks to a TWILIGHT ZONE episode). The night was stormy, treebranches wildly carousing and dipping to entangle my hair. All at once, my father had hold of my hand and we went flying through the neighbor's yard to escape the dangers of the night. Whew! I sure was glad to awaken from that one!

Then there's the dream where a giant mouse jumped on my shoulder and bit my ear, and all I could say, dreaming, was "M-m-m-m-m-m-m-m-m-m-m-m-m-m-m-m!!!!!" My husband woke me and laughed at that one.

A recurring dream I haven't had in a long time (watch, I'll have it tonight 'cuz I'm mentioning it now!) is the Elevator dream. I'm in one, alone, and it goes berzerk --- sideways, slantways, up, down, all around...horizontal, obliquely...wake me up already!!! 8-{

Um, have a nice day, everyone, and sweet dreams tonight, heh heh! :-)

Mel 5-7-2002 14:04

PS TEEKAY -- is "GO OPRAH" anything like those
"RUN, Hillary, RUN!" stickers many of us New Yorkers had on our front bumpers? :-)

howard 5-7-2002 13:31

TEEKAY -- Thanks, but you're in the minority, you know. Actually, the way I heard it is "There's no talent for my words" But thanks anyway, and if there's a book your name will be on the "thank you for the confidence, encouragement, and inspiration" page! (or the "thanks for nagging me into actually doing this" page) :-)

If anyone here got an Email from me this morning, please disregard it -- it didn't really come from me. I just found out that my daighter got an Email from me that said something about "directions for a game," and it contained a virus. It didn't even come from my Email program. Sounds like what I've heard about the KLEZ virus. NAV says my machine is not infected, but I'll be going through the removal process shortly, just in case.

JERRY -- one of my worst recurring nightmares -- after the snake with the human skull for a head that always chased me down a long country road -- has to be the "buried alive" one. And not just buried, either. Often it's being trapped in a narrowing passage, sometimes between two walls, where I can see/feel the studs, and the plaster hardened between the strips of lath, and I try to back out, but there's a series of nails angled just so that I could get past them on the way in, but they're guaranteed to disembowel me if I try to get back out. And I'm squeezed in so tightly that I can't get a full breath, and when I do manage to breathe it's all full of dust and dead bugs, and it's getting darker, and I can't even yell, but only manage a hoarse whisper that no one can hear, except for the things scurrying down the passageway behind me.
It's kinda like life...

howard 5-7-2002 13:27


JERRY: Spring is here. Well, it's more like summer. The high yesterday was around 90. Right now it's skyrocketing toward's today's high of 85, the sky is blue, the birds are singing, and there's the slightest of breezes in the air.

RHODA: Your post was perfect. Don't regret sending it. Christ's birth fulfilled prophecy, but his death secured salvation.

HEATHER: hahahahahaha. Sorry. That whole bit about the drywall dust, etc., was so wonderfully written.

Okay - I'm caught up. Hi, everyone! Happy Tuesday.

Hallee 5-7-2002 12:27

Hello all!
Weather last night was pretty bad. (Understatement of the Year!) We had a few tornadoes touch down around the area and it was pouring and pouring and hailing and pouring and lightening and pouring and thundering and pouring some more! I had the misfortune to be working the 4-8 shift. Our 'owner' called up and said to close shop and head over to the Family Video that is attached to our building. From the big store windows that our Family Video has, we watched the heavens open while it was throwing the hail and rain in a monsoonish type fashion. We were lucky enough to be far away from the tornados but we had tornado warnings until 7:30 last night. Well, I didn't get electricuted if that's what y'all are worried about. (not like that could do anything to my already frizzled 'n' fried brains!) I hope y'all didn't have as bad weather as we did up here. We don't happen to have these kind of things happen up here to often. According to some it's a once in a lifetime opportunity to see a tornado actually touch down in this area. Just a little short note from me
Till Niagara Falls!

Elaine 5-7-2002 12:26


Teekay: Good to see ya, and I hold me responsible for it to. How are you?

Taylor 5-7-2002 3:32


Hi All,

Ah religion. A topic to stir torpid waters and mayhap get the pirhana biting.

TAYLOR: I hold you responsible for this :-D

JERRY: My hubby was born in a small village town in Italy and he told me that there were stories of people walking past the cemetary and hearing cries and muffled pounding coming from within.
These were people who were buried alive, but they weren't dug up again, because once written into the book of the dead you had to stay there.
I want to be cremated.
When I'm dead I mean.

HOWARD: There are no words for your talent, but if it's any consolation to you most artists really hit it big once they're dead.
Nice to have something to look forward to, don't you think?
Pick cremation, pick cremation!
P.S. Could you please send me an original work from yourself so that I am able to frame it and brag when the time comes.

No writing, no writing, still sending out the tired old shorties when they come back to me.


What else?



Teekay 5-7-2002 2:43


SNOW, damn snow again, most of today. It melted as it fell, yet the weatherman keeps warning us that this is just the begining, another FOOT of the white crap is on the way.

Tell me about Texas. Does the sun still shine? Are the sands still hot? Can you still drive around drinking beer and be legal?

GOD how I miss Texas.

Jerry 5-6-2002 23:53

Hi all :)

Haven't accomplished much of anything today. Nor yesterday. This blasted cold is beating up with used, wet tissues. Worse than a wet noodle. I've been drinking so much water I think I'm floating away.

Ah well, if I add just one sentence to my current work, I'll feel much better. Right? :D

Happy day all!

Carol 5-6-2002 18:21

e-mail me with some writers notebooks topics thankyou bibi:)

lilley none 5-6-2002 15:03

Hi, just thought I'd update you again, joined a placement company, and am waiting to be placed in industrial work. Can always retrain with them for clerical. Still looking for a place for my fantasy serial. any ideas?

Laura 5-6-2002 14:36

CAROL: You're welcome for the giggles! ( I try and do my best to please!)
Everyone else: Hello! I had such a busy weekend I couldn't get online at all and what do you know, I'm feeling a little guilty about it. sorry I couldn't get on, guys! (pathetic little sad face). As for religion, you need the complete package; all that's needed is faith in one person, Jesus. Law is nice, but it sure makes us feel guilty and nasty little human beings, doesn't it? Gospel is nicer, there's a lot about God's love in there, but it's still a little imcomplete, isn't it? Jesus' birth was great! God's Son came down from heaven to live as one of His creations, what could be the greatest gift... Except it doesn't stop there does it? His life was perfect so it could be used as payment for our sins...His death was His sacrifice for our sins...His resurrection was our certainty that we would be going with him to heaven when we die...and that's all nice information, but it's not what is most important. We need the faith that Gospel gives us in His word. Without faith we are doomed to an eternity in hell. Personally I would rather believe than risk forever in a place of physical, mental, spiritual, and emotional torment. I leave to you all what you would like to believe because I'm not trying to convert you. I don't want to strain the friendships I've made here. Neither am I forcing anyone on my opinion. An opinion is a belief that you share and in your mind is right and true. All right, I've had enough of religion talk. It's kind of hard to steer away from it when you're surronded by it all day. By the way, RANDALL: not all things have changed in the school systems. In my school, you can't turn around the hallway without being reminded of God and country. I believe that that's the way it should be. We say the pledge every week and we are reminded in every class of things taught to us when we were still in gradeschool about the Bible and the blessing of this country. Well I have to go....LUNCH TIME!!!!
Till Niagara Falls!

Elaine 5-6-2002 12:29

JERRY -- I hears\d someone say "Did you ever notice that old folks read the Bible a lot? They're cramming for the finals..." Dunno who said it, but I think it was Steven Wright.

howard 5-6-2002 7:22

So the cowboy tells the city slicker "We usually ride that mare to town first."

Remember being a child. I do, not as well as I would like, but I remember some of it.

In play we used to always say something like "pretend like..." or "play like..." followed by a bit of a story line that ran through our young developing minds.

I think that's a bit like what we do now when we write fiction, play like the girl rebukes the boy's advance. Pretend that the cop shoots and misses. It's just that we leave out the pretend, and the play like.

That's probably why I like writing so much, it takes me back to my youth when I could be anything, anybody that I wanted, and for that short play time, I was. I could be a horse, a space man, a cop, a robber, a fireman or anything and everything.

Maybe that's what the world needs a bit more of. Play like there's peace. Pretend that you shook hands.

Then again, it could be that I'm just tired. Maybe I played one too many games of pinochle today. It could be a bit of undigested stuffing, a bit of chicken that didn't sit just right in my stomach.

I think it's just that I'm tired but the pretend like or play that have been running through my head a lot of late. Got an email from my "double cousin" out in Spokane, she was a bit older then I, and played with my sisters more then me, but her younger sister was about my age. I haven't seen the younger sister since sometime back in the early seventies, but the elder said she was printing out my short stories from my web page so her sister could read them. Guess that's what brought the pretend thing to mind. You see we played together a lot, as their farm was just a good walk from ours and since our fathers were brothers, and our mothers sisters, we visited them a lot, we played together a lot, we considered ourselves almost as close as brother and sister.

I miss them.

Old age is creeping up on me. It's a bit frightening because I don't feel old, no I feel the ache and pain of age, the soreness in the joints, the muscles in my hands, my arms and that sort of thing. My beard is getting whiter, but my hair is still solid blond, my hairline is creping back, but not as bad as my cousins, none of whom have any hair, well except the one who has mental problems, he has a full head or he did the last time I saw him.

But I know I'm getting older. When my dad was in his fifties, I thought him an old man, he died in his early sixties. Mom is seventy five, and today we took our walk around the house during a break that we take when weather allows. Mom was well out in front of us, beating everyone by nearly half a house. She does take care of herself, walks two hours a day on her treadmill, and since contracting diabetes, she watches what she eats, and has lost a bunch of weight.

Another thing comes with age, not wisdom, although I have heard that it does, but only from those older then I, no a rush back to religion. We all know that we are coming closer to that time when life here on earth ends, and must consider what comes next.

Do we simply stop existing? Do we go on? What if we are still alive when they bury us? I do fear that, being buried and still having some sense of what's going on. It's the thing that wakes me in the night. I don't know why it bothers me so. I understand the whole thing about the soul leaving the body, and what's left is just a shell. I understand it, but somewhere deep I don't know that I believe it.

No, I think I'm just tired that's all, so I'm off to bed, to sleep, to dream, to escape, to shut off my brain and allow it to wonder at the meaning of life.

Write on.

Jerry 5-6-2002 0:27

Well that is one persons opinion

5-5-2002 23:49

Religion is the word given to man's interpretation of the bible.

The bible is God's word given to man.

If you sift through the mire of human thought you will find that the basic concept of each and every 'religion' is the same:
be good, be kind, be humble, serve others, love each other.
So simple, yet how many do not understand the concept?

It is foolish, vain and naive to think we exist simply for the sake of existing.

It is foolish, vain and naive to think that there is no ultimate truth, which some refer to and some of us confer with as GOD.
And which some deny.

It is also foolish, vain and naive to think we are the superior of all animal life forms. In fact we are in reality, for the majority of us, the most stupid, for here, facing our greatest of challenges, to master the temptations of free will, so very many of us will fail miserably.

It is the confusion of most men that knowledge and wealth is the way to riches, but what is knowledge? What is riches?

Knowledge is knowing and believing in the ultimate truth and riches are the souls reward for such learning.

Be not misguided by man's interpretaion of what makes one learned, for that is the way of fools.

5-5-2002 23:28


Ok guys I am sorry for even mentioning the word religion... It wasnt my intention to start up a discussion thing. Was just saying I think it was good that we havent let beliefs interfere with our "friendship" on this site.
Again I apolagise

Taylor 5-5-2002 23:20

Wouldn't touch that religion thing with a five foot six inch pole, even if he were the pope.

Sitting quietly by the side of the notebook observing.

Jerry 5-5-2002 23:04

MARK -- Decisions, yes. I'm hoping to be able to take a few classes while still working. It looks like my scheduled may allow that.
You said > "A good college or university education will break the mold. How did the really good, the really deep theologians get to be the way they are? Education." < What's a "deep theologian?"
Jesus said that "Unless you become as (have faith as) little children, you shall not enter.." -- and -- "Whoever shall humble himself as this little child , the same is the greatest in the kingdom of heaven."
I've read some of these deep theologians who deny the existence of heaven. I think I'll stake my eternal future on what He said.

I agree with another pretty good thinker:
"I believe in Christianity as I believe that the sun has risen,
not only because I see it, but because by it I see everything else." -- C.S.Lewis, "Weight of Glory"

I've nothing against education - we've been there before - but I don't believe that education is the be all end all answer to the wold's problems.

This whole discussion reminds me of something I wrote a few years ago on the same subject:


Knowledge, you are falsely named Wisdom;
and how has Data become Understanding?
Madness and Folly are names more apt
for that which steals away my waking hours.

You intrude upon my slumber,
I cry out for you in my sleep.
You disturb my rest, yet I welcome you.
You torment my dreams, still I seek your sophistication.

Knowing well my own mortality I desire you.
And I will pursue until I find you.
But when I gain your treasure - when I have known you -
Will yet another declare you common?

He who was before you sustains my quest;
familiar, yet faithful,
homely, yet steadfast.
He upholds me with understanding.

You would usurp His place.
You would seduce with things unlearned.
You would lure me away with secrets.
I will listen, but I will not be moved.

You whisper that former things are obsolete,
things that exist are no longer correct,
destined to be cast down and scattered.
Sown as ashes - or seed.

But where is wisdom in broken foundations?
Whence the logic of building on sand?
The sage has said that all is empty,
vain and useless in itself.

My mother has taught me; I have heeded.
My father instructed, and I have listened.
Now I move with you in endless dance of learning;
we pirouette together in aimless steps of enlightenment.

Sing your song, tell your runes;
work your enchantments, teach me what you will.
Try as you may you will not supplant,
you can only add, and modify.

For I am not my own, but kept,
held by One who will remain
at once window and mirror,
foundation, beam and pillar.

Genesis, time, and apocalypse are His, not yours.
You can only deny the one and claim the others.
and denial was always destitute, claim ever barren,
posed against truth.

(C) Howard Tuckey 3/20/94, 4/2002

howard 5-5-2002 15:20


I will gladly buy you that cup of coffee.

Rhoda 5-5-2002 11:10


Now wait just a gol durn minute! Let me git my thinking cap on and wade on in this religion thing!

Rhoda...you are NOT an idiot! Don't let me hear that again or I will, well, uh, well, ah, I'll find you and do something! Perhaps something as rash as making YOU buy me a cup of coffee! :-) Faith, home and country are BEST defended by average citizens. How not? And this covers every country in the world.

I don't believe education alone makes a good theologian Mark. Experience in life will however and down and dirty life experiences are NOT gained in a classroom. I think the best teacher would be an uneducated person in sandals, perhaps roaming a desert country teaching, not the wealthy, not the educated, not the comfortable, not the upper level of society, not the sin free but the poor, the sinners, the down trodden. Every graduate in theology should be required to spend four years in a third world country, in the worst slum and hell hole possible. Or Texas in the summer. :-)

Would Jesus teach in a wealthy, fat cat university? Of course He would, because there are sinners everywhere. He would go against the status quo ... though. And consquently would soon have His teaching credentials removed by the powers that be! "Security! Escort this person off the campus! Of all the nerve! Who does He think He is...anyway?"

Organized religion suffers badly when compared to what Jesus taught us. An ongoing church scandal comes to mind.

I believe the reason for Jesus's life (if I may be so bold)is the way He lived it. Birth and death are merely enterance and exit. Sure they have meaning, but the covers of a book mean little, what is inside, between the covers is important. Jesus taught how we should approach life. Jesus is leaning against the goal post (play book in hand) in the end zone, watching to see how well we do as we struggle up the long and broad field of life. His goal line of perfection may be attainable or we may stumble and fumble and collapse from heat prostration on the 20 yard line. But He will always be there, a guide, visible, offering, urging us on, not cursing if we fail but offering His teachings.

(Cowboys are in mimi-camp!)

Edward Abbey quotes....

"Art, science, philosophy, religion...each offers at best only a crude simplification of actual living experience."

"The sense of justice springs from self-respect; both are coeval with our birth. Children are born with an innate sense of justice; it usually takes twelve years of public schooling and four more years of college to beat it out of them."

FYI...Well, we surived the storm last night. At the last minute the most dangerous one swerved east and passed 10 miles to our south. Many areas were pounded by golf ball size hail, with a few areas receiving baseball size hail.


Randall 5-5-2002 9:05

I was an idiot to have put forward that last post. Why should I always be defending myself or the things I have posted that have been misunderstood? Really I could use my time better. I think we would all be better off if I kept some of my thoughts to myself. Mary Matalin, Ellen Goodman, Mona Charen, and Cal Thomas all get paid for this sort of thing. Let them defend faith, home and country.

Rhoda 5-5-2002 2:26


I in no way impugned education or its importance in the making of a good citizen. I merely impugned academia for what it has become. Both my father and my mother taught at universities. My father is a PhD chemist and taught as a professor for over thirty years. Every member of my immediate family has at least a master's degree. I would say we were a family that valued higher education. My parents also witnessed the changing of universities and the deterioration of the quality of education. I do not wish to go into great detail about it, because not all universities have been so negatively affected, but I don't think that anyone can argue that attitudes that would be found insufferable in the real world are not only tolerated at many universities, but are greatly applauded, and I mean specifically radical feminism.

Education alone does not make people moral. Many people working for Hitler were educated. Can you educate prejudice and greed and hatred out of the human soul? I personally do not think so. Also, I question the value of education that some people get out of the university. Some of it is more indoctrination than education. You might have different opinions about that, and that is fine.

Furthermore, you are right in that Christ's birth has led to salvation in that he had to be born in order to become human and in order to die, but it is the atonement of his blood that provides the salvation. It is by Christ's shed blood on the cross that a believer is forgiven and saved. Then by Christ's resurrection was the entire work completed. Through that he overcame death and the grave for not only himself, but for all his followers. But Christ's birth alone did not do it. If you want chapter and verse, I can provide it in an e-mail, but not here on the Notebook.

And finally, I did not mean to imply that Christians are more moral or have more innate goodness than anyone else. I do believe that Christian values have permeated western society over the centuries and have given it the quality of life and the high standards that it holds. There are many Moslems, Hindus, Buddhists, Jews, etc. that make model citizens. But on a broad level most of these religions hold many common values.

Christianity just explains things differently and has a different "take" on the nature of things, especially the nature of man. I personally hold to that world view, and I throw it out because I am constantly amazed how well it holds up. Others might not see it so.

I just thought it extremely arrogant that those women could trash talented and gifted people so. They not only disliked these men and their accomplishments, they hated them and despised them. Where was THEIR tolerance? It seems the same tolerance that has given rise to the doctrine of political correctness which began in large, Ivy League universities. These women, as Howard described them, seemed to embody what I think worst in people who spend much of their lives in universities.

I don't know why I responded, because I do not think these women deserved this much attention and the time I have spent putting this post together.

Rhoda 5-5-2002 2:20


Good evening friends...

It is a dog-gone fact that the severity of a Texas thunderstorm may best be understood by the width of the TV weatherman's eyes. The eyes of the weatherman in Abilene just increased from mild anxiety to near panic only minutes ago. There are storms in our area with tornadoes doing their torturous midnight dance. Great sheets of lightning and rolls of thunder have everyone on edge. (My wife is in bed watching TV with ALL our dogs and cats as close as they can get to her!)

Ho hum. Spring in Texas. No big deal. However, during these times I would rather be here than at the Water Valley Cemetery in remote Mason County. I wrote this section many years ago, so for what it is worth......


....You know, I'm not sure at age forty eight and heavily armed, I would wish to be in that country when summer thunderstorms close in with thunder and lightning. Forever lingering in my mind, this forlorn cemetery exists visually. Hell... I named this book after it! What does that tell you? Many years have elapsed since I tread through remote brush choked pastures to visit this ancient resting place. During summer thunderstorms that usually occur at night I have watched radar images superimposed over Mason County. You better believe I know exactly where this cemetery is in Mason County. Playing with a mental image I sometimes try to imagine what the countryside must be like as thunder and lighting sweep the sparsely populated area.

So let's pretend... take a break and indulge in a little fiction. Imagine for some unknown reason, or purpose, late one summer night you are seeking shelter under a great patriarchal oak tree in a remote pasture. Rumbling thunder and brilliant sheet lighting surround Water Valley Cemetery only yards away. Sweeping gusts of wind, scouts for the advancing storm bend waist high grass and weeds. High in swaying oak trees dead branches fall, adding to a rising crescendo of noise. Now the light pattern of rain increases. Wet tombstones, some on their side, permit lightning flashes to highlight inscriptions carved many, many years ago. Horrified only then do you realize an old abandoned cemetery is nearby. How in Gods name did you get here? Or why? Should you take a chance and leave or remain? Hoping the deadly lightning won't strike the old oak tree you decide to ride out the thunderstorm.

Perhaps cattle, sheep or deer lie under nearby trees seeking shelter from nature's violent storm? Other than that possibility, you are isolated... not another living soul for miles around. Caught alone in this God forsaken place you cower, seeking protection as the storm intensifies. Not believing ... but incredibly the solid trunk of this hundred-year-old tree is moving beside you, trembling before the ever increasing wind. The storm is now on you, wind shrieks through the area. Incredible thunderclaps deafen and strobe like lightning blinds. You quail before nature's assault of noise and light, human senses overloading. Nothing could be this terrifying. Now a hard male rain avalanches down drenching every thing, adding to your trouble.

Shrinking against that old trembling oak tree following that last flash of lightning, did you see something standing in the open? Horrified at the implication but before your eyes can focus again, violent lightning, following by an immediate crack of thunder confound your senses. Visually assaulted, ears ringing, struggling to wipe free your impaired vision, peering through the rain you see ... nothing.

Thank God you whisper, turning away, intent on leaving this forlorn area. Struck dumb, unable to breathe you collapse, sliding down the tree at the impossible vision which disbelieving eyes behold. Horses hitched to a wagon bearing a casket surrounded by mounted riders' lie immediately before you. Women in full skirts, carrying parasols, with large hats guarding against that sunny day one hundred twenty-five years ago when they buried their father are strolling around you. Men carrying rifles with belted pistols visible beneath black coats dismounted to survey the country from under straight brim hats, features hidden. All are moving slowly, dreamlike now, twenty, thirty or more people are moving amid the lightning flashes, as if no thunderstorm rages around them. Paying no attention to you, they gather momentarily beside the wooden casket. Grim faced men remove it from the buckboard, placing it next to an open grave. Horrified you realize a funeral from over a century before is being broadcast again. Brought forth by a disruption in earths magnetic field, history replays a grim scene.

Seconds have stretched into minutes and the storm is passing leaving only a light rain. Breathing raggedly, slipping in the mud, you struggle to rise, praying for the power to run.

A fallen twig snaps beneath your shoe.

At the crack, a tall, slender man turns sharply. No, your mind screams! Unbelievably, he turns to look directly at your position. Features hidden, head down he hesitates a minute as if in thought, then retreats from the grave. Moving his Winchester rifle to a right hand, he walks toward the tree that now supports your trembling, beyond control, shuddering body. In stupefaction, brain overloaded, from somewhere, someone whispers, "My God he heard you." No longer in control your bodily functions void. No one could possibly contain himself under these circumstances.

The apparition approaches slowly, deliberately. He halts directly in front of you. With his finger he points toward a distant western horizon. Raising his head slightly so a sad weathered face with brilliantly illuminated blue eyes of fire look into your twitching face. He gently speaks two words that prompt your feet into action and this scene is now behind as you flee beyond reason.

"Go! Now!" was all this ancient apparition said...

Mom told me many years ago that I had relatives buried in Water Valley. Someday I would like to venture forth, find the land owner and get permission to take a look. But at night...and never, ever in a thunderstorm.


Randall 5-4-2002 23:56

Still no spring, but it came close today, got up to fifty, and just in time too. The CITY WIDE rummage sale was on today. Now this is a treat to the women, and a curse to we men who must haul them from garage to garage, then stand around looking stupid as they fight with the other gals over who is going to get that stupid picture that you wouldn't want hanging in the outhouse, much less the living room.

I still curse the day that I purchased my big four wheel drive FIVE SPEED extended cab, short box pickup. No matter how many times I offer, the wife simply refuses to learn to drive the dang thing, so when it's things like today, I must make the rounds to over thirty different garages, seeing the same other ladies, and the same other husbands sitting in their pickups stewing about not being able to go fishing, or watch whatever on TV, or going to the bar for a bit of pinochle and beer.

Aw well, it's over for another year, and maybe next year the daughter will have the day off, and will drive the wife around in her Jeep. Should be room for most of the big stuff, well except for kitchen sinks and the like.

Other then that, it was a fine day in South Dakota, and despite the chores, we did manage to stop off at the Cennex gas station, where they have an A&W in one corner of the station, and have a large mug of root beer, and a bacon double cheese burger, along with a small order of onion rings (only 55 cents with coupon). Then to the Sugar Shack for a Almond Joy glacier (Read blizzard in disguise).

Got the bank statement in the mail today, and to our surprise, Social Security direct deposited the wife's back pay. And here we had been spending day after day watching for the mailman, hoping against hope that the check would come soon so we could pay off the creditors who were nearly banging at the door.

Overall I guess it was a good day, except that I haven't gotten back to my short story as of yet, it still resides on my hard drive and only about the first third done.

Tomorrow is family pinochle day, but maybe Monday I can get back to it. Saw my Dr. yesterday, he seems to think I'm doing well that's always good to hear. Now if he could have just come up with something to do with this stupid sinus thing that refuses to go away, no matter what drugs they throw at it. His most recent order, fill the sinus cavities with a combination of salt baking soda and warm water twice a day, 8 ounces of the mixture at a time. If it sounds yucky it is, and not a pretty sight.

Discovery has a show about spiders, guess I'll watch that for awhile.

Hope everyone is getting more writing in than I am.

Write ON!

Jerry 5-4-2002 23:52

HOWARD -- Decision time. Finish school? Jump on a job? Be nice to do both, eh? Listening to Bob Seger the other day, "Beautiful Loser."
"You want your home and security,
You want to live like a sailor at sea."
Yup. I want it all.

RHODA -- I shouldn't get into a religious argument here, in fact I'll suggest we take it to email if we want to continue, but two points beg to be made.
  1. Christ's death didn't bring salvation, His birth did. Find a theologian and ask him/her which was more important. And by theologian I don't mean your local pastor.
  2. Kindergarten, Grade School, Bible School, High School, all the schools we send our kids to during their formative years have a primary purpose of making the kids into good citizens. The intention is to mold children into the American Model. Obviously, there are regional and cultural differences to account for, but most kids who come out of school hold the same values and believe the same truths as all their classmates. A good college or university education will break the mold. How did the really good, the really deep theologians get to be the way they are? Education.

Mark 5-4-2002 23:25

The echo was unbearable - had to stop in and add a few jot notes, taken today while removing all the tub tiles and installing a shelf-filled super shiny nifty new tub surround:

* Never walk around the house with the same pair of socks you were wearing when sanding drywall and lie about it
* Apologize profusely to your wife/mother/girlfriend/neighbour when you do happen to wipe your dusty socks on their pantlegs, countertops and clean dishes
* Never smugly tout about the orbital sander when there are no empty vacuum bags to be found in North America (or wherever it is you hail from)
* Never smoke when screaming - it's too hard to get a good haul
* Do not *repeat* do NOT attempt to use your favourite sweater as a wall duster when the house is covered in white drywall dust. Do NOT attempt to hug in a cramped hallway while wearing said sweater.
* Always take a bath before ripping out the bathroom tiles. It sucks madly to stand up in the laundry tubs, trying to aim up accurately (or artfully) with a half-foot of hose screwed onto the tap.
* Remember that laundry rooms don't always have towels. Sometimes all they have clean and stacked are bedsheets and pillowcases.
* Your husband will ALWAYS find the camera, with film in it, the moment you are wearing a sopping wet, sheer white linen sheet in the basement.
* Your husband also nabbed an 800 watt flash bulb adapter from the pro shop last week - which just happens to vapourize sheets - but remember, murder is a crime.

Be kind to each other,
even when remodelling.

Take it simple, easy and sweetened,

Heather 5-4-2002 22:08

Hey Howard -- congrats!!

Ok, so where's everyone else? Too nice of a weekend to spend inside?? I'm stuck inside with a nasty cold. Yuck! Where's that box of tissues??

Oh, so that's where everyone is. You all took my tissues and ran away with them. Well, achoo on you! hehehehehehe

Carol 5-4-2002 21:28

Where is everyboddy?

5-4-2002 18:19

Hey! I had a call with a job offer! Things are looking up!

howard 5-3-2002 16:09

There's more to that, but some of it is all confused, and I'm not sure how to bring it together. Maybe after school...

It's really windy here today, a cold wind that occasionally shakes the house. Had snow showers earlier -- almost a whiteout as I was driving home from school, and the wind was enough to blow my truck all over the road. Even the tractor-trailers were swerving over the lines.

howard 5-3-2002 13:37

I feel like I've been on a tangent - haven't really added much to this lately. Sorry for the digression - math and other stress does strange things to the mind. I'm happy finals are in less than two weeks! Maybe get back to normal (whatever that is) then.
Meanwhile - here's something I've been working on -- tell me if it's a waste of time or if it sounds interesting enough to work at -- It's called:

"Ten Large"

Maybe you never knew or heard of Anthony "Ten Large" Guano. No, don't laugh at his last name, at least not too loudly, if you value your health.

Maybe you remember him by his given name, but "Ten Large" is the way some of us remember him now. Those of us who want to remember him, that is. Some couldn't care less. Maybe some should have cared more.

His real name was Walter Sanford, and he was always a strange kid. Not too
bright, like most of the "strange" kids we had in school, but definitely
strange. Never had a nickname like the reset of us did, (mine was "Monk" on
account of my big ears) and never had a girlfriend that we knew of, either.
He kept to himself mostly, read a lot of comic books and paperback novels
about gangsters and weird stuff, and he watched TV a lot. I remember the
only thing he used to really talk about (when he talked at all) was "The
Untouchables." It was his favorite show back then, and when the rest of us
guys got the hots comparing Annette with Darlene, he'd always bring up
Frank Nitti or Scarface. We'd talk about hotrods, but he'd draw pictures of
1920-style sedans with machine guns poking out the windows. We'd laugh, but
he'd never say anything, and now I wonder if we maybe shouldn't have
laughed so much.

One day he found a copy of "The Godfather," and from then on he devoured
everything he could find on the Mafia, and became even more withdrawn. He
never did come to church very much, and one day he stopped coming to our
church completely, and started to not go the Catholic church very much
instead. I guess I was as close to him as anyone, because of our youth
group at church, but I never saw him much after he quit coming on Friday nights.

howard 5-3-2002 13:33

Morning All :)

There are times I feel a little under qualified to post on this board. So many of you write brillantly expositions of your thoughts and philosphies of life. Don't worry -- I know I can do it too when there is a subject that grabs me passionately and won't let go. That talent has served me well numerous times when the VA wouldn't give us benefits plainly written in the law. I love writing to my Senators! hehehehe Hubby rants, raves and swears while I take down notes and transform it all into a neat little package. By time I'm done, the law is once again being followed as it should be.

Elaine - I do have to say, your talented imagination shines through quite nicely in your last post. You had me giggling when I really needed a good giggle. Thanks :)

I believe a while back, I mentioned that I have another health annoyance to deal with. Well, my tests results have finally come back and yes, those doctors 11 years ago were right. I was wrong (and pig-headed). I do have Lupus. The doctor didn't say yet what kind I have, but I'll nail down the specialist on that subject when I see him on the 22nd. Right now, he's on vacation. Oh well, at least now I know why I've been feeling the way I have and that is a relief.

I'm back to writing one page per day -- everyday. That method worked nicely for me once before and so far it is again. I don't restrict myself to the one page, if I write more great. But if it is only that one page, that's okay too. I can still face the rest of the day feeling good about myself.

And now -- I'm hungry -- it's time to feed this body.

Have a great day everyone!

Carol 5-3-2002 13:27

Hello y'all!
My ancestory (sorry if I spelled it wrong) is quite a lot of little things. My great grandma and my great grandpa were both full Germans on my dad's side. So my Grandma is full German, my dad a half, and I'm over a quarter. I'm also Irish, Scottish, 1% Welsh, and a little French according to my parents, and of course I'm over half English. As for famous relatives, I do believe that I have one or maybe two in there. Has anyone ever heard of Nathan Hale. He was a soldier/spy in the Revelutionary War who was captured in New York by the British and is quoted for saying just before he was hanged for treason, "I only regret that I have but one life to give for my country." I may have changed the wording, I'm having a little problem remembering due to a allergy/stress headache. There's another word for the stess headache, but I cannot for the life of me remember what it is. I've had it for about 3 days now and it will be 4 days when the clock tolls 5:00. I've been recuperating at home for the past two days, but i had to be here in school today because it wasn't as bad, and i have to get my euphonium from the band room for state on Saturday. I had a nice little post for you on Tuesday, (little! hah! i laugh at my self) and the computer in the media center wouldn't let me send it so I tried copying it quick on paper and then I get so conveniently sick that I wasn't able to even get to the computer because the pressure was so bad...Whoops! Am I talking to much? I do tend to write a little much when i've been gone to long from doing it. On one of my projects that I restarted up today I've already written, oh, I don't know, 4 pages and the day isn't even half over yet! I think my muse has infested me this time instead of just watching tamely from my pencil eraser and I think she want's part of the action! Well there's no point in denying her a little of the action, is there? If I do, she'll run away, if I don't then she'll be happy and my writing will be a little livelier, (I hope)! Oh, no! See what she's done to me already! I still have more than ten minutes, (closer to fifteen) that I can write, and oh! (gasp!) She's a tricky one, my muse is! She sees a challenge on trying to get me to write during the whole period and she'll do it anyway she can. Wait! No! STOP!!!!!!
Hello everyone! I am Elaine's muse and I was able to wrestle away the keyboard so that I can write to y'all. Besides, she's too busy pretending she's a librarian to write in the NB anyway, so now it's my turn for some of the action! Where are the other muses? I saw TEEKAY'S a while back ago and I wonder if I've met her's before. I'm still young (for a muse) and I'm only about 150 years old. Uh-oh! I think Elaine is jealous that I'm talking to y'all! Well, that means that she cares about me and doesn't want me to run away yet. Wait! Not yet! At least let me say good--!
Whew! Man, for a little thing that can sit on top of my pencil, she sure is strong! Sorry, about her, she gets a little antsy sometimes when she stays at home and my 4 brothers and sisters are there. They drive her nuts! (not that I blame her!) But does she have the nerve! She practically threw me off the chair and made me look stupid in front of everybody! Are all young muses like that are muses like that in general? I wouldn't know. I havn't had many experiences with other people's muses. Well the bell is about to ring and I have a few more customers. So this is my chance to say Goodbye!
Till Niagara Falls!
-bye! See y'all next time! (If Elaine will let me!)

Elaine 5-3-2002 12:33


I tend to agree with you on our high rate or irritability. It is a shame really because our nation and many others share many interesting cultures and groups of people with their own unique history and contribution to society as a whole. One of the chiefs of the Cherokee Nation was on the radio talking to Dr. Laura. She was asking him about the duel citizenship of the native American, and the man assured him that Cherokees considered themselves 100% citizens of the Cherokee Nation as well as 100% citizens of the United States. The Cherokees existed as a nation before the United States was even formed and made treaties with Great Britain. Furthermore the Cherokees and other Native American Nations have had vast experience in transforming themselves from a tribal society to part of a larger nation state. In this aspect, Native Americans have some worthwhile lessons to share with similar people in similar situations in other countries and societies. He stressed that our Indian nations are an asset--he gave as an example the Indian code talkers of WWII. I loved his kind, wise and positive attitude. It was forward thinking, not backward, and he was more concerned about what the Cherokees could contribute humanity rather than making whites and everyone else who had ever crossed them or had been cruel to them pay. And if any minority group in the United States was ever wronged and betrayed, it was them. That attitude is certainly a contrast with attitudes and demands brought forward by the self-appointed leaders of some other minorities with legitimate gripes from the past.


I personally think that good, old fashioned Christianity best explains these darker sides of human nature. It is easy to go back into any artist's or human being's life and find ugly things. Thomas Jefferson is a good example. He espoused the ideals of equality under the law for all people and had more to do with what is best in our Constitution, yet he never freed his slaves, let alone insisted that there be made provisions for their rights in the the Constitution. General Travis did great and brave things at the Alamo, yet he abandoned his wife and children. You can delve into the lives of any public person and find inconsistencies with their public persona. Could this be any less true for those of us who are not famous?

Sin is the problem. And the concept of sin should make everyone of us humble when juding others present, past and future. Sin is merely the state of imperfection which every single human who walks the earth shares. And sin was not brought upon the human race because of Eve. Adam did not have to eat of the forbidden fruit, and he was the one ultimately held most accountable for the whole incident. It is said in the New Testament that death came into the world by one man (Adam). It was Adam's disobedience that brought the curse of sin and death to the world, not Eve's. We are all held accountable for what we do, and we cannot blame the people who might tempt us. When we receive Jesus into our lives, we receive the Holy Spirit who gives us the strength to live a righteous life. Then by Jesus's blood shed upon the cross does the Christian believer receive forgiveness for his sins, past, present, and future and the ability to be reconciled to God. Forgiveness does not rid the believer of accountablity or paying the price for his bad behavior.

It is for the above reasons that no person or nation ever measures up to our standards of perfection, and that includes Howard's poet and her three friends. They judge dead, white, male poets, yet in the eyes of God or any of us, if we could see their whole life and their deeds, they would never measure up to rightousness or worthiness. They might have been "nice" ladies, but there is no excuse for insulting someone for their anatomy and bodily functions. It is sad to think that these women and others like them think themselves truly enlightened.

If the world is ever to be saved from it's folly, that salvation will not come from Academia.

Rhoda 5-3-2002 10:21

Oh, got so shook up about that, that I forgot to mention, I'm back to writing again, have half a short story done, it's my first attempt to put a bit of romance in a ghost story, I call it "How do I Love Thee?"

Got the idea from all the poetry that's been flying through the pages of the Notebook of late.

Jerry 5-3-2002 1:01

Anyone here ever hear of the software called MAGIC LANTERN?

How about Carnavore?

I just read a report on these programs, both were developed by the FBI to track email and electronic communications.

Carnivore is already in action and has been for awhile now. Magic Lantern is what is known as a key logger. It is planted on the target's computer much like a virus (so much like a virus that the major anti-virus manufacturers are not allowed to put them in their virus definitions for national security reasons).

The Magic Lantern program has yet to be deployed, or at least not that the author of the article knew when he wrote the article for PC World.

Magic Lantern is planted on the target's computer when he or she visit's any government site, or in lieu is sent an email containing the bug. The program lies near operating system level and logs each and every key that is pressed on the keyboard, then transmits that information to the agent who is linked to that particular bug.

Unlike Carnivor which intercepts email's at the ISP locations, where it can arrive already incepted by the sender, Magic Lantern get's the information before it can reach any interception software. While the stated use of the software by the FBI is to keep watch on terrorists and subversives, the law that gave life to this software, the Patriot act of 2001 does not limit the use to those purposes, but opens the usage by all law enforcement to investigate any crime, or suspicion of crime.

The really scary part of all this is the fact that it intercepts not only email, and other e-communications, but things that are written for any purpose. So if you get angry at your Senator, or maybe the President, and compose a letter expressing your anger, but better sense prevails and you toss it in the recycle bin, the FBI or any other investigator who has a link to your system already has that information, and can use it against you.

Seems a bit 1984'ish to me, but then maybe I'm just a bit paranoid in my old age.

Jerry 5-3-2002 0:59

Christi, did you sort out the email virus conundrum? I miss your emails!

Howard, Mark: There seems to be the stink of male poets in the air tonight... *sniff sniff* Whoa! I smell a few close by...

Just KIDDING! (about the stink)

Off to work - I must be in my factory worker frame of mind... those sick jokes keep arriving, with no light, clean silly fun in sight.


Heather 5-3-2002 0:10

RANDALL -- That ethnic exclusivity shows up no matter where you go. There were tribes in the Iroquois League who were looked upon as servants to the rest. The Europeans, who knew all too well how social status could be exploited, were all too happy to do so, and pitted one tribe against another to their own advantage. Same thing in the Middle East. Same thing in the Orient and in the Far East. Even in Oz. What a world...what a world! Nice place, but I wouldn't want to live there...

howard 5-2-2002 22:30


Poets....not all that dull reading actually.

I once had to recite a poem for an English class. The only part I remember is...

Jesse James was a two gun man,
Strong armed chief of an outlaw clan.
He carried an old colt 45,
They never took Jesse James alive.

Wouldn't you know Randall would pick up on this one.....



Ah, a poet named Rose as I recall. Steven Rose?

Randall 5-2-2002 20:45



Honestly Howard, I've never seen a Comanche. Or a Mohawk. That I know of. The level of irritability is high in our nation...and I would be afraid to ask some persons nationality. Our medical doctor is either an Indian or from Pakistan. I'm afraid to ask. Really. He's an allright dude, but very big. I would hate to flee the clinic as he chased me screaming with a bedpan raised in the air. "Indian! I'm Indian! From India...."

A National Guard soldier come into NAPA recently. He was quiet, composed...had an aura of confidence about him. His last name was Chapparo and his stripes indicated sergeant. That was on his shirt, a no-brainer. I am interested in Navajos and would have given an eye tooth to talk with him...if he was Dinah. Or otherwise actually. He was the kind of man I modeled one of my characters after. (Perhaps he was! Writers create!)

But I was afraid to ask and he soon left with his fellow troopers. Missed opportunity, Randall. I mean white folk stick out. With a high percentage of a possibility, Anglos are either of European descent or...or, well...European. Now this could mean French, German, Scots, Irish, Welsh, and so on. Even this paint brush is broad and the best way to be handed a fist sandwich is to ask a Welsh (Briton) if he is English (Norman) I once made this mistake of a student nurse one time. She was Welsh and grew very red in the face when I asked if she was English. Excuse me, and please let go of my throat!

I don't take offense if someone inquires of my ancestry Irish/German/Texan. Irish as in temper, German as in methodical and cattle drive, town busting, steer chasing Texan through and through. But some, dare I say it, third world citizens react with chagrin when misidentified.

"Sir, are you from Nigeria?"

"I am NOT! I was born in Ethiopia thank you!"

"Excuse me, are you Hispanic?"

"NAVAJO white boy and don't forget it!"

So Howard if I ever met a Mohawk, I wouldn't know it. Or a Comanche. Or a Navajo.

And it's sad because there so many interesting people in the world. Perhaps I should improve my technique?


Randall 5-2-2002 20:38

Also (MARK) -- I am by no means expert in any of the poets mentioned. I do love reading Milton, but got heartburn over Eliot (Prufrock, etc). Couldn't fathom much of his imagery (but there was the one about an erection...). Hardy (I couldn't get past the first pages of "Tess,")I could do without, but that's neither here nor there. That's my own personal preferences. Give me Gray, Burns, Whitman, Browning (both of 'em), Frost, Dickinson any day.

howard 5-2-2002 17:10

MARK -- I'm sure you would like Ruth Stone. I do -- never said I didn't. It was only the initial shock (forgive my naivete) of hearing those lines from a grandmother that caught me by surprise. She does give readings occasionally. There was an article about her new book in the Press a week or so ago. I also like David Rossie -- have met and talked with him, even took one of his classes. But I still disagree with much of what he writes.

No, it was not Ruth, nor even her students themselves that I had an issue with. It was that instant feminist condescension toward all males, and the trashing (apparently for the sake of being contentious -- and scoring points with the Head Honchess) that causes me heartburn.

Where I come from grandmothers are held in equal esteem with grandfathers. Whether either deserves it or not, they are. Part of that comes from the very book you cite -- the part that entreats us to "Honor thy father and mother..."
Everyone bashes the book for relating that Eve was the one tempted, but few remember the part that says "By one man sin/death entered the world..." and that "All (regardless of gender) have sinned..."

As for the specific male poets, I mentioned them only because they were brought up in the very one-sided discussion that took place. There was no time nor patience alloted for any discussion on their behalf -- indeed, it was a given that these women were speaking absolute truth in their assessment. And is that not the greatest argument used against "that book" -- that there is no absolute truth? If that is the case, then where is the foundation for the argument?

I'd agree with you about Eliot - his view was male centric. It was still great poetry. But again -- if there is no absolute, then what is the basis for arguing against him? Politics and personal preference? We've seen where that has gotten us - to the place where the strongest and loudest prevail -- where "right" and "wrong" become blended into an unpalatable ethical mix, where eugenics and ethnic cleansing are becoming an accepted part of everyday life, and where greed rules.

As for "common Christianity," we're even now reaping the "benefits" of banning that from the town square.

And yes, it's about time we had stories with greater realism, but there again -- in the situational world view -- whose realism?

But we've had this discussion before, and you know that I must base my world view on the book that is so abhorrent to anyone who can "think" for himself. Not on any man made - man corrupted "religion", but on a relationship that I have personally experienced to be true.

howard 5-2-2002 11:02

Hope all are well. Sort of getting my head above water and beginning to think about some of the short stories I want to work on. Also the novel I have had in the works for some time now and, I should say, have been story boarding in my head, but not writing. Well, off to the San Juans to do some diving and underwater videography. While there I will not have a computer with me. It is my intention to carry along legal pads and try writing without the advantage of a keyboard. There is something about that that may springboard a slightly more creative process. Something I picked up from a book on the creative process called The Artist Way. At any rate, talk with everyone soon. Off to bed while everything is dripping and drying from a dive I did today to test out a new light for the underwater camera.

Jack 5-2-2002 4:02

The mind is a funny thing, when I read about Viv signing up for paragliding, my mind rearranged the letters to a familiar word, paralegal.

I was trained to be a paralegal, and the only thing I found frightening about the whole thing was spending the rest of my working days dealing with lawyers. Now there's a frightening thought.

On second reading I saw where my error was, paragliding, I don't know much about that, but it does look fun, I think it is something I could enjoy, if I could, which I can't but I can dream about it. The freedom from gravity's firm hold, sailing through the air like a bird, seeing the ground go by below, touching a cloud, the fresh air, the sunshine. The landing. Ok that's why I can't because the landing, that would be the hard part.

It does sound like fun though, hope you enjoy it while sailing through the air with the greatest of ease.

Spring has yet to arrive, it is warming a bit, but not spring, not really. Had the garden guy over yesterday and he tilled our garden plot for us, now the wife and daughter can play in the dirt, and raise our winter eats. The lawns have gone from brown to green, yet the cold hangs on like a bad haircut, refusing to let the mercury reach above forty degrees, warm enough for the trees to bud, the grass to green, but cold enough to keep me indoors.


Jerry 5-2-2002 0:54

HOWARD -- I might like Ruth Stone. I'll have to keep an eye out for appearances by her. You should stop by my place and talk to one or two of my grandmothers; particularly the one from Kentucky who had five husbands. They all died. No one knows how. Even in her moments of clarity she doesn't talk about them. She did grin once when Cate asked her.

Grandmotherly is not necessarily elevated. Grandfatherly is elevated. Grandmotherly is down to earth. I always liked Carol Burnett for her earthy quality. I wonder if Ruth Stone could be like Carol Burnett.

Of the writers you mentioned, the only one I have read much of is Eliot. The others I know by reputation and I wouldn't get in a snit at hearing any of them trashed. David Rossie likes Chesterton. By reputation, he was a curmudgeon. Knowing that, I'd venture a guess that you'd need some age to appreciate him, and being a man would probably help. Yeats? He's been studied five ways for every day of the week. The consensus is that he's difficult to understand. Those who think he's a genius and a visionary will generally point to the specifics of his era and his environment. I'd have to say those were days when men were men and women were women and they had different places in the world.

Hardy. The guy who wrote "Tess of the D'Urbervilles"? Do you really want to read that again? Milton. Blind. That says a lot. His worldview (so to speak) has to be different from the mass. You have to credit his ability to tackle Paradise and all the attendant moral issues there, but his clews all come from the literature available to him. More than Yeats this guy had men and women in places, women in guiltier places than men perhaps. Again, era and environment. Who ya gonna blame? The Roman Church and the Protestant Reformation both agreed that Eve gave Adam the apple and they both did their best to ensure that their book was the most widely distributed book in existence. Their symbols dominate Western thought.

T.S. Eliot. I wouldn't argue against his male centric view. I might get into it with Yeats and Milton, those guys had bigger fish to fry and used the symbols of their day. Eliot's departure into manworld may have been a stroke of genius, but there's no question in my mind that Eliot's view of things is specifically and intentionally the view of a man. That's quite a departure from the previous sense that the best literature have an "Everyman" appeal. Nope. In Eliot you get "Specific Man."

Unmentioned in all of this is Hemingway. Papa could generate a man's eye view of the world like no one before. He wrote stories about men in difficult situations doing what they could to get through or get by. I don't recall any Hemingway stories where women are blamed for the trouble. There's no Eve. Excuse me if I'm unenlightened, but wasn't it about time for stories with greater realism and greater attention to the individual? We are not all Everyman or Young Goodman Brown (or Faith).

To argue with the male-centric view of Yeats and Milton is to argue with common Christianity. I'll take a piece of that myself. Chesterton I might enjoy. I'm just old enough and cranky enough and been married long enough. The Stone disciples might find themselves with a real, live person to get derogatory against. They can have Hardy.

Mark 5-1-2002 23:13

Hey, I must be a Poet Laureat, if phrases like that are the measuring tape!
Non-grandmotherly is right, Howard ~ shnikies!

Heather 5-1-2002 16:19

VIV -- I very much admire smoe of Ruth Stone's work, and she's an excellent teacher from what I can gather. It's just the atmosphere on that whole campus that I don't think I could live with. The three students(all women) that came with her to the reading were very nice, and one of them actually asked if I'd like to collaborate on a book of poetry about names. But then they began to discuss Chesterton, Yeats, Hardy, Milton, and especially T.S.Eliot from the "feminist" viewpoint, which was mainly derogatory. I got the immediate impression (and I wasn't alone) that anything produced by a male was at the least questionable, if not downright garbage, and they went on into some sort of trancendental/mystical/eastern "poetry."
Ruth Stone herself has published several very good books of her poetry, and is known as SUNY Binghamton's Poet Laureate.
I've heard her read, and she's good. But there is something a bit disconcerting (for me, anyway) in hearing an elderly woman (she reminded me of my grandmother) standing in front of a group of students, reciting a poem about "getting all excited over your beautiful big cock" then, later, "squatting over the hole where the shit goes down." It just seemed a little non-grandmotherly, I thought. (sorry for the language, but that's what it was).

howard 5-1-2002 14:39

Go Viv go! Woohoo!
I don't know the first thing about paragliding, but if the instruction and safety are anything like skydiving, you'll have a radio or something, and the instructor will talk you down. No worries! I just know you'll love it. We'll be expecting a full description ;-) When do you start?

Tina 5-1-2002 11:56

Christie: I signed up for paragliding lessons. I don't know what I'm thinking. I must be nuts. Yikes...well, all I have to say at this point is that I hope the list is too long and I don't make the cut. Then again, I hope I do. I must be suicidal and not know it. HOW am I EVER going to land? I don't mind jumping, I don't mind floating or falling, but I do mind landing. I also signed up my husband. I haven't told him how we're going to spend the next weekend. I figure I'll just take him there and let him find out what I've done. No use talking about it too soon.

Viv again 5-1-2002 10:13

Howard: I've never heard of Ruth Stone. I tend to doubt the abilities of someone who has to "...bash". Bashing is an excuse for insecurity. Lately I've noticed two types of hurtful jokes, male bashing jokes and blond bashing jokes. What is really asinine is that they are the same as the racial jokes that used to be popular. Now it's just a new group to bash...white males. Anyway, it is a great poem and you should go ahead and submit it elsewhere. Ignore the critics, they aren't writing poetry anyway. Nothing like idiots trying to judge art. Politically correct idiots are still idiots and male bashing is still prejudice against a group.

Golden week here and the weather is exactly that. We are having soft spring days. My garden looks beautiful, roses in bloom, azala bushes blanketed in bright red blooms. It rains but even the rain is a soft warm mist.

Viv 5-1-2002 10:08

Carrying breechclouts.... *wicked grin*

Heather 4-30-2002 23:29

Yeah, Mark! *agreeing with Howard*

Heather 4-30-2002 23:28

I don't blame you one bit, Howard - I'm not into that type of scene, either!


Heather 4-30-2002 23:27

MARK -- Inadequacy? I've seen some of your work and it was far from inadequate! Makes me feel like a hack!

VIV -- That poem was requested at a reading for SUNY's Ruth Stone, and I was invited to come to B.U. to take her class. Didn't feel ready for it then, still don't. The students she brought to the reading with her were too into male bashing, and I didn't feel like getting into that arena. There was/is a very strong leaning toward trashing all Western/European male poets/writers there, and I'm afraid I just couldn't handle that scene gracefully.

RANDALL -- Never saw the Comanche who could carry a Mohawk's breechclout... :-)

howard 4-30-2002 22:13


4-30-2002 21:15

Howard: Amazing poem! Thank you!

Carol: Thanks for being nice about my sudden lack of writing. I enjoyed my vacation. It was one of those unexpected vacations. We had to go up to Tokyo for Hana's translator exam. She takes them about once every two to three months. It's always such a grind to go there. By the time you get back you feel half sick. So I rented a room for the night and we did sightseeing. If you ever get to Tokyo, do take a ferry up the Sumida River at dusk. There's also a nice man-made island made entirely of reclaimed land. It's interesting but I kept thinking what would happen to it in an earthquake...reclaimed land would turn into jelly! That is why they don't have houses out there, only shopping centers and arenas for big sporting events. (Hey folks are you thinking big disaster movie?) Everywhere we went, because we were right on top of Tokyo Bay, I kept seeing Godzilla in my mind's eye!
Uh, by the way, if you ever get to Tokyo...do not do the Tokyo Tower. It's pretty lame. If I were to do it again, I'd be sure to have an 8 year old boy for a companion. You need someone with a superabundance of energy and no taste if you are going there. The big attractions once you get inside are a small wax museum, a three-D picture gallery, and an aquarium exhibit in a single room. With an 8-10 year old boy, I'm sure you'd feel you got your money's worth. (Especially if you rode to the top in the elevator and had him walk up to meet you!)

Viv 4-30-2002 18:54

Ah ha! Another norsk. Dad was a pure bread Swede, and always talked of his heritage. His grandfather came over from Sweden, and his father traveled back and forth between nations to visit relatives. Now the wife is nearly pure Norwegian, so according to all those who know of such things, we should get along about as well as oil and water, but it is not so. I guess another of those who don't condemn others for what their fathers did.

Mom's second husband was Norwegian, he always kidded me about "A hundred thousand Swede's running through the weeds. A reference to the war between Sweden and Norway.

Here about's it's the Norwegian's who get the jokes told about, the Ole and Lena jokes and such, but from my experience none are very accurate to say the least.

Anyhow, most of those old Ole and Lena jokes are now told by the Norwegian's to Norwegian's so I guess they don't take particular offence to them. You can even by Ole and Lena joke books at the local stores.

My father-in-law was much like your father Carol, very quiet, but so very confident in his ability to do what he set his mind to. He had a wonderful sense of humor, and loved his farm and his rural life almost as much as he did his family. He has been gone for many years now, but will never be forgotten by those who knew him.

Jerry 4-30-2002 13:39

One's heritage is such an interesting subject. My father's side of the family is pure Norwegian. All my life I've grown up with this perception of quiet, dull, staid Norwegian men. That's the way he and his brothers behave. They get together, scuff the dirt and go "Yeah. Ah, ha." Very few words pass their lips. Just nods and grunts. Yet it's a warm comfort as well, like a family heirloom quilt. Then I discover the name of General Olaf Rye as an 8 time grandfather. Ok, rumors are he's famous in his country of birth. Time for a little research of my own. Turns out the General has statues, parks and streets all over Oslo and other areas of Norway. The reason for his fame? He thumbed his nose at the Swedish King when said King took over Norway's army way back when. Olaf wasn't about to betray his country as so many others felt forced to do by this King who stole his country. So he refused to swear allegiance to the Swedish King and joined the Danish army for the remainder of the war.

Hmmmm, Dad and his brothers come from a man who defied authority? Well, at least now I know where I get THAT trait from! LOL

Have a great day everyone!

Carol 4-30-2002 13:19

High School Biology, wonderful class, unless you had my teacher. Mr. Dale, now there was a teacher. First he taught us the textbook version, then brought out his bible, and taught us the biblical version. Now days he would have been fired, and in fact about twelve years ago, he was. Now he lives on a ranch with his brother, both are deeply involved in the survivalist movement, and are members of the Posse Cometatus, now known as the church of something or another, a branch of a white supremacist movement church.

He did teach us the required subject first, I'll give him that, and I guess it didn't hurt me to hear the biblical version, but then that was back in the days when the Ten Commandments hung at the back of every classroom, when the Pledge to the flag was said in the lower grades, when YCL was a club that every student belonged to, when there was a dress code, a haircut code, and when the principal still worked for the board of education and possessed the board of education that consisted of a paddle with holes in it so it could gain velocity on it's way to the offender's bottom. Back in the days when a teacher could slam you into the locker to "get your attention", and you feared telling your parents, because your dad would probably slam you against the wall for causing the teacher to have to slam you against the locker in the first place.

I guess times have changed, and while change is good, there was a lot to be said for the peace and security that was the high school of the 60's.

We never would have thought of bringing a gun to school and taking our anger out against the bullies, or the jocks. While we dreamed of what we would do to the principal given half a chance, we knew that they were dreams and that there was no way in hell that I was going to be able to hang old Lyle D. Zipper by his ankles, and feed him X-lax for three days straight. Nope, I knew that wasn't going to happen, and the last time I saw Mr. Zimmer, I saluted him. He used to run his school like a military establishment, and when he left the school, he was activated in the Army, where he served at the Pentagon as a Colonel. One day I called him, and we got together for coffee, and BS at the Pentagon when I delivered some classified documents to be destroyed. I told him that I did appreciate the way he insured that we learned right from wrong, and how his guidance prepared me for my experience in the military. He wasn't so bad after all when we were wearing the same uniform.

Jerry 4-30-2002 0:22



Christi! :-) Oh, that's tacky girl! Real tacky! :-) And well done I might add! Now Christi, you quit picking on our Yankee brothers and sisters. Folks cannot help where they were born! Perhaps they will do better next time around! Karma you'all! Everyone can't be born a Texan. :-)

Howard...Very well done old son! I too have Native American blood. Who from, unknown. My grandmother told me once we had some Commanche ( I believe) in the family. If I had any NA blood I would wish it would be Commanche. A noble breed who fought Anglos for their land, and, well, Mexicans ... and okay, the Apaches ... and the Spanish ... and just about everyone they came into contact with!

My family, the Kiser side, lived in Mason County, Texas which was a hotbed of Commanche activity in the early to mid 1800's. My G G grandmother told my brother and I, in the latter part of her life, that Commanche warriors often came to her fathers ranch house. She said they would slowly ride to her mothers kitchen door and ask for bisquits or flour. She said if they asked, they usually received, but if they came riding and shooting her folks shot back. She pointed out an ancient root cellar to us one day and said as a young girl she spent many nights in there when the Commanche attacked.

My g g's sister lost an eye in just such a battle. An arrow struck her as she peered around the corner of their home to watch a shootout between her fathers cowboys and Commanches intent on depleting the local horse population. Not too far from where I live, 40 miles or so, (Randalls history tour!) is Calf Creek, an area where James and Rezin Bowie and friends fought a pitched battle with a mixed force of NA's which included Commanches. The Bowie boys were following a map to the Lost San Saba Mine. (My SS story to Heather referances this very same lost mine.) Issued a very hard "slap" by the mixed force of NA's they were forced to retreat back to New Orleans. Unable to return immediately Jim Bowie became embroiled in the battle for Texas where he died at the Alamo. I suppose Rezin stayed in New Orleans and this should indicate who the smartest brother was!

According to Red Britches, Jim Bowie's last words were, "A map, a map! My lost mine for a horse!"

Red will also cleverly point out that a Mexican calvary officer, with a 12 foot long battle lance referanced the plea as he rode Bowie down. "I got your lost mine right here Gringo!"

Well...it could have happened that way.



Randall 4-29-2002 20:51


I agree there, and I am glad race or religious beliefs have not interfered with us getting along.

I will not post a pic of myself on the web because:
A) I do not turn out well on camera
B) I do not have a scanner
I think I look like a dork on pictures.

Hey but if anyone wants to ask anything about me... Just ask

Taylor 4-29-2002 20:39

In many ways we are all equal here.

A friend of mine wrote her doctoral dissertation on poets. Her theme was Fragility and Toughness. Today I realized that I think of myself as tough in ways I am not. I wonder if I think of myself as fragile in ways I am not.

I'm hard on myself as a writer. I think other people will see the terrible inadequacy of my work in much the same way I see it. Now I think I know why someone would be afraid. In many ways we are all equal here.

Mark 4-29-2002 20:19

Howard, you are the King of the beautiful and sad - the tragic beauty poem.

Heather 4-29-2002 17:57

Howard - nicely worded poem. You've hit just the right note there. My hat's off to you. {Howard}

Carol 4-29-2002 13:51

JERRY -- Your account of your ancestor's name reminds me of my own great great grandmother - she was full-blooded Mohawk, and I went to the village office where she and my g-g-grandfather were married, to see if I could find her name. I found the record, and all it said was that "Mr Amos Tuckey married a heathen."
I wrote a poem about what I found:


I cannot know my great-grandmother's name.
A village clerk took it from her one afternoon at a desk,
scrawling by the light of a coal-oil lamp
with a pen dipped in bigotry, in the blood of her fathers.

He took it because she was the color of old copper,
and smelled of leather, and wood-smoke;
her eyes were dark,
and her hair was the color of a moonless night.

He would not have bothered with her -
she would have remained beneath his notice
had she not the boldness to marry above her station.
And civility demanded in the record a name.

His civilized mind could not grasp her given name -
natural, unbounded by the conventions of his own small god.
So, putting her in her "rightful" place, he chained her with his pen,
naming her heathen - with a small h.

And then he closed the record and cleaned his quill;
He extinguished his lamp, and went home
to plump, loving wife and children who smiled
as he blessed them all by their own small names.

© Howard Tuckey
1994, 2000

howard 4-29-2002 12:14

Hi all!
Thanks for the advice HOWARD. I couldn't remember how far down in the NB that I read about the email being spread around to NB people so I asked again just to make sure it was the right one. Well, that's all I got for now. Maybe I'll come back later, I don't know if I have any 'Important' email to look at but, I should check just in case. Well see ya till later.
Till Niagara Falls!

Elaine 4-29-2002 11:55

One word of advice: Never mix biology and psychology.
You might find unicellular organisms spreading flagelli on your chaise lounge.

Heather 4-29-2002 6:54

Gee - grade 10 biology - that was SO many years ago!
*ulp* Not that I want to give away my aged... I mean AGE!
Freud, why did you have to go and make up that stupid slit uh... I mean slip thing? Do I call that a psychological test?
And if so, did I just pass, or fail?

Don't worry about me, friends.
It's a late night, a deadline, and me. :oD

Heather 4-29-2002 6:52

Two words at the end: the world.

It was that old mean post button again.

gariess 4-29-2002 1:53

Where are the snows of yesteryear? Indeed, the snows of today, so wanting as to leaves holes in the fabric of a sentiment that daydreams of the bygone kind would pass through unnoticed and forgotten. A mind returns from the contemplative to the near and mundane world which we all know is too much with us. Those snows on which I rode a winged chariot with rusted metal runners and a piece of cotton clothesline, bearing a warrior prince in scuffy Buster Browns and knee pants. Sweet sadness in such visions through the looking glass. Always a sweet ennui. For something wonderful, yet gone. They are all of a lot. Those that have lovers, those that have dreams of a future so grand. Those that have me by myself in the dimly lighted park, feeling a rare sense of the great and beautiful in

gariess 4-29-2002 1:50



I'm back from vacation, but a bit worried. I opened that peice of mail you've been discussing, knowing full well I shouldn't, but dagnabbit, I thought it was from one of my sci-fi newsletters. Turned out there was no text in the body of the email. (So in fact, that would mean there WAS no body.) I know I shouldn't worry, as I have Norton Antivirus and it hasn't alerted me of any danger, but still, I wonder about the recent emails I sent out--one to Rosemary (on conventions) and one to Teekay. So until I hear back from either of these two I won't email anyone else, just in case.
Let's hear it, guys. Are you virus-free? I'm just being paranoid, right?

With that out of the way, HI everybody! Not much to add to the conversation. How can people ever see an end in sight if everyone is always paying each other back for past wrongs? I don't know how they can ever end it.

Okay, how about a joke to liven things up? It's getting a bit too... depressing. I didn't say it was a good joke, remember. For those who've heard this one, please excuse me; I'm trying to remember how it goes. Something like this:

A woman from the North (U.S.A) and a woman from the South were riding on the same Amtrack train. The Southern woman sits next to the Northern woman, flashes a smile and says, "Hi. Where y'all goin' to?"
The Northern woman looks up and says, "Where I come from we don't end our sentences with prepositions."
"Oh," says the Southern woman. "Where y'all goin' to, bitch?"

One of my all-time faves, yessiree! I only hope I got it right. I've never been too hot with prepositions.

Happy goodnight to y'all. Hope you're goin' somewhere nice.

Christi 4-29-2002 1:28

Mark - I couldn't agree with you more. I used to always say "I never owned slaves; I never gave blankets infected with smallpox to the natives in winter; It wasn't me who killed the buffalo. And neither did my ancestors!"

I always said that with the confidence that none of my ancestors came to this country till the late 1890's.

Then my sister got my old computer and learned how to get on the internet. She searched and searched for our ancestors, locating the family of my maternal grandmother's father. It seems one of his relatives researched his lineage back, way back discovering that his (our) relative was one of the first settlers in New France, now Canada. It seems he married an Indian girl, who's name he discovered in the logs of an early priest who came to bring God to the heathen's. I don't recall her name now, but when they transcribed it from her native tongue, it had an 8 in it, as their language had more letters then ours, and numbers were used to form the sounds, or some such thing.

At any rate, I was still right, they didn't own slaves, in fact helped escaped slaves to Canada and freedom. They didn't infect the Native Americans, in fact inter married with them, and lived among them for many years.

But you are right, each generation should fight their own fights, if need be, not those of their parents, or grandparents. If the world would live by that simple rule, things would sure be peaceful.

Jerry 4-29-2002 0:28


Well said. In remembering wrongs, may we all be blessed with a short memory.

Rhoda 4-28-2002 22:58

I received that scifi weblog thing too - trashed it. There's too many viruses now to take chances with something you don't know is safe.

howard 4-28-2002 22:26

MARK: I'm in highschool, you know 9th-12th grades? Currently I'm a sophomore, (hopefully next year I'll be moving up to be an upperclassed junior)Did anyone get anything from sf-f.org? I haven't opened it yet but I don't remember if I'm supposed to or not. It says something about Writers, Weblogs, and Workshops. My dad thinks it's sci-fi fantasy. org, but I don't remember if this was the same email that you guys got or not. Well, my dad says that I've got to go so,
Till Niagara Falls!

Elaine 4-28-2002 20:50

Hi All :)

Well, another round of snow lies on the ground.

Viv - don't worry, I didn't accomplish much either. I did get rolling a little on a new idea. And just spent some time doing some research. I also just realized my printer says "Mommy, mommy." as it prints. Strange machine. Now why should it be complaining in such a manner? I feed it, I provide it with stimulating information. Jeesh. Just can't please every inanimate object.

Carol 4-28-2002 18:50

oops, clicked before I put my name in, thats from me below

Jerry 4-27-2002 23:15

Mark - you may be right, in fact the From line had diddly, but when I opened up the properties of the message, the place where it is SUPPOSED to show the true address, it showed the .au address. I know that there are ways of changing the properties too, but usually viruses don't go that in depth to hide where they came from, after all their main function is to inflict as much damage and hit as many people's computers as they can.

Since it was an actual virus, I thought it a good idea to mention it here, as it may indeed have come from there, or as you say, it could have come from most anywhere. I have found, however that when I try to trace the sender via the properties it usually finds the right person, as I have heard back from several who responded with a thanks for letting them know.

Spent the last few days trying to get my big computer back up, even found another motherboard on Ebay, but it came DOA, the fellow is taking it back, it's wonderful to find an honest person on Ebay once in awhile. The fellow said he got them as factory referbs, but didn't check each one, he is sending me another.

Meanwhile back at the ranch style house, I decided to try and put the other one, the one with the bad keyboard in an old case my son gave me when we were up visiting. When I put the power to it, it worked.

I bit of investigating showed that the case I was using, while new was made a bit wrong, and the add on cards couldn't go in all the way, thus screwing up the whole IO.

So now I have an extra motherboard coming that I don't need, and an USB keyboard (wanted to try and save this MB that way).

Looks to be a good year for a yard sale on computer parts.

Of course I could try and fix that old case and put.....

Haven't done a bunch of writing of late, too busy with these stupid computers but now that I have my good one back up and running, I intend to get back with the program. It always gives me a sense of accomplishment when I get done with a short story. Wonder how much stronger that feeling will be when I'm done with my first big project. I can hardly wait.

4-27-2002 23:14


I couldn't agree more. If you don't get the guy who did it to your grandfather before he dies, it's too late. Getting back at his grandson, who did squat to your grandfather is what keeps the world in turmoil. Of course if they keep doing it to your father and you, then you can do it to them. By this imperative alone, the world will have all the strife it needs. Santayana was a beanbag.

4-27-2002 18:27

Hi Jerry: I got something that said fict writers or something like that. I deleted it. I didn't ask for it, didn't know the person, so I just bumped it out of the inbox into the trash. I'll go empty the trash because I don't need a virus right now.

I updated my Norton this morning so I doubt it would hurt but I really don't want to even get close to letting anything in.

Carol: I ended up gardening all day long. I missed my writing. I had two bad days in a row and tomorrow and Monday I have to be in Tokyo. I'll be back Tuesday night but will have to do preparation for school. I think I lost it this week. I'm so sorry about letting you down on this end. I got overwhelmed. I had to replant my rose trees because they'd outgrown their pots. I also needed to put in the last stones in a porch I was making. I need to finish my gardening...ie: get out all the plants that are overgrowing their pots already and make them look a little more even and consistent. Gardens are like children, they take a lot of attention and tend to outgrow whatever you put them in!

I'll try to get five seconds to myself. Lately the whole family gets up at 5:00AM WITH ME. How frustrating. Must be the pretty spring flowers and the sudden burst of clear days. It will be pretty like this until June then once again we'll head into the rain and this time we'll get the buckets dropped on you type rain.

Got to get some sleep. Viv Back on Wed. if time

Viv 4-27-2002 10:08

From ZDNET.COM -- "Klez.h bypasses installed e-mail software by using its own SMTP server to send infected copies of itself. To locate addresses, the worm searches files on the hard drive, looking for various file extensions that may contain e-mail addresses."

So JERRY's virus may not have come from down under, just look like it did.

I got that spam also. "Help support a SciFi site," or some such. And I haven't put my email in here in quite a while.

ELAINE -- You're in what level of school?

RHODA -- Binghamton U. Jewish Student Union brought Isaac Bashevis Singer to campus in 1976 or '77. I went to see and hear him. Marvelous listening to him read excerpts of his stories. European Jews came to life there.

I particularly remember his remark, "Don't forget your heritage." I thought that few of us have the multi-thousand year heritage of Jews. At that moment I was envious. There's a rich pot of lessons to be had in a rich pot of history. The more I thought about it, though, the less I valued history. I've thought for years that America is blessed with a short memory. All the lands of long history are lands of conflict. Ulster, Alsace, Palestine, Kashmir, Croatia . . . all places of long history. Just the existence of long history does not ensure stable, peaceful residents.

I think Santayana was wrong about forgetting history. If I can live to avenge the wrongs done to my great-grandfather, then I must also live to repay the injustices done by his grandfather before him. Baloney. I can only live for myself today. History is nice. But nothing beats learning to live in the moment.

Mark 4-26-2002 23:33

I'd love to share two pieces of good news.

One my mouth is feeling better. The swelling is almost all down. I do have a small bump left, but I'm full of hope.

The second is I received the letter from the US Libary of Congress on my second sweetie. It's all copyrighted with them.

I know there are mixed messages about the need to copyright with them, so I figured until the messages are not mixed I'd go with the tried and true.

If I can do it by myself anyone can.

One note though, since October of last year because of the Anthrax thing, they have stopped accepting mail from the post office. So if you want them to get your stuff you have to send it Federal Express.

Sweetie is now finished and will be available to be in stores in the next month.

If there was one thing I could claim about this dating violence book is that these girls read most of the other books on that topic and are left feeling how those words apply to them.

My book will leave them feeling like they have been being followed.

If it's the last thing I do, I will help girls.

Debra 4-26-2002 13:15

Hello? Anyone there? I'll have to talk to Bookie, she kind of intimidates everybody, but we can handle her, (I hope) Maybe next time she'll come and post a message by herself and not using my post! She's a writer too, albeit an inexperienced one.
Till Niagara Falls!

Elaine 4-26-2002 12:29

Okay, I know that I set myself up for that one. I tend to do that every once in a great whiles. My parents love to tease me. Whatever I say comes out the wrong way which means they have the parental right to tease me. But does it stop there? Oh, no! My friends at school have also noticed this tendancy of mine of becoming wide open for a tease. Then of course, there are my good friends in the NB who also do the honors of teasing me.... All in good fun, I say just as long as the teasing is in fun and joking around, and of course that (they don't mind my teasing back) heeheeheeheehee! LOL
Till Niagara Falls everyone!

Elaine 4-26-2002 12:20

Oh forgot to mention, I received a virus infected email from someone who lives down under and who's address starts with jewel. I responded with info on how to remove the virus, but the person's email box is full, so the email couldn't be delivered.

Thought maybe it was one of the members of the notebook since the only folks I know from there are here.

Norton cleaned the email, and there was no harm to my system, just wanted to let the other side know that their system is infected.

There is a cure for the infection at the link below. Norton said it was the W32.Klez.gen@mm and came in a file called note.

Jerry Virus cure w32... 4-26-2002 12:09

No, MARK, it wasn't anything like what you're thinking of. We had 3 questions to finish for the assignment. That's why it didn't take that long. Besides which, Bookie is a girl, (like me) and I have a boyfriend. ((SHUDDER!!)) I don't even think about that, and no anatomy lesson, and we already passed THAT chapter. We are currently studying athropods, blunty put, bugs. (or crustacheans, trilobites, and a great deal more things than just bugs.) Is that a suffiecent explanation? Just wondering. So, HEATHER, does this mean I'm no longer in trouble? (Big puppy eyes)
Till Niagara Falls!
PS hey people, i'm Bookie. i don't know what is wrong with you people but i think your sick.
PPS sorry about Bookie guys, she's sometimes (well most of the time) verbally abusive! She's already threatened my boyfriend and thinks he's a demented psychopathic occultist. She's also very opinionated! (putting it delicatly of course!) (I'm putting it delicately because I don't want to get smacked! She also does that once in a many a whiles.)

Elaine 4-26-2002 12:09

Jack - I do so envy you. Diving is something I have always wanted to do. A buddy of mine in the Army was a diver, and his tales of exploration beneath the sea thrilled me to no end. I even looked into diving lessons a couple of times but with the cost of equipment it was always beyond my means. The sea has always fascinated me, when I was stationed near it, I spent hours just sitting at the shore and watching the waves roll in, always different, always exciting, imagining what happened on the other side, the other shore of the ocean. Being from a landlocked state, all my experiences with water were lakes where the opposite shore was within view, I guess that's what made for the wonder of it all.

Jerry 4-26-2002 12:02

Hello everyone: Doing a bit more research :-) on my science fiction story about scuba diving...Actually, what we did was Edmonds's Underwater Park around noon today and then did a night dive at Seacrest. This is a first for us, actually doing two shore dives in a single day. Have done more when doing a dive boat. But, sort of a milestone for Fran and I. Oh, and the night dive was only the second time that Fran and I did a night dive together. Saw some huge cabazons, painted greenling, gunnel, an octopus and more. Next week we are off to Hornby Island in British Columbia for some interesting dive experiences and hopefully get a chance to video tape a six gill shark or two or at least a sea lion. If I get anything, I will share it here. A little tired. The second dive was on straight air and not nitrox, so that tends to drain me a bit more than when I am breathing higher than average quantities of oxygen in my tank. Hope to sit down and begin penning some of the story I have about my scuba diver diving in alien environments. Take care.

Oh, and since I somehow messed up the link to the videos page in the link at the bottom of this post, the accurate that really works is http://www.fenwithfins.org/divingvideos.html

Jack Beslanwitch http://www.fenwithfins.org/divingvideos.html 4-26-2002 2:03


I did get the same SPAM in my collection of daily e-mails. It came along side the ones for cheap car insurance, increased sexual potency, a new Mastercard, and a service to get me out of debt, FAST.

Rhoda 4-26-2002 0:24

I read through the last post and left out so many words the post made little sense. Let me try again:

I just returned from a presentation in Tulsa featuring Yaffa Eliach, one of the designers for the Holocaust memorial in Washington D. C. I bought her book titled THERE ONCE WAS A WORLD, a 900 year chronicle of the Shtetl of Eishoyshok . This book is full of information and stories about the lost world of European Jewry. It was through this book and projects like it that Jews destroyed by Hitler in WWII could come alive again and be remembered for who they were before the Halocaust. I cannot remember a time lately when I have been so moved. The scary thing is that Jews are again being attacked and victemized in Europe again as has happened recently in the Netherlands, France, Germany and the Urkraine. There are those going around claiming that the Halocaust never happened. Well, the eye witnesses are still alive, both those who were victems and those who liberated the camps. Let us hope and pray that this horrible incident in human history is never forgotten--it will always serve as a caution about how far human beings can stray and how dark the human heart can be.

Rhoda 4-26-2002 0:21

I just returned from a presentation in Tulsa featuring Yaffa Eliach, one of the designers for the Holocaust memorial in Washington D. C. I bought her book titled THERE ONCE WAS A WORLD, a 900 year chronicle of the Shtetl of Eishoyshok . This book is full of information and stories about the lost world of European Jewry. It was through this book and projects like it that Jews destroyed by Hitler in WWII could come alive again and be remembered for who they were before the Halocaust. I cannot remember a time lately when I have been so moved. The scary thing is that Jews are being attacked and victemized in Europe again as has happened recently in the Netherlands, France, Germany and the Urkraine. There are going around claiming that the Halocaust never happened. Well, the eye witnesses are still alive, both those who were victems and those who liberated the camps. Let us hope and pray that this horrible incident in human history is never forgotten--it will always serve as a caution about how far human beings can stray and dark the human heart can become.

Rhoda 4-26-2002 0:15

Anyone else getting SPAM saying they found your address at a "writers site?"

Just wondering, some came my way with my old email address showing that it happened before I announced my change in email address. Since this is the only writers site I post, it had to have come from here.

I guess it had to happen, just makes me sad to have to stop putting in my email with each post, but I feel I will have to, simply to keep my email volume down to a manageable amount.

I am begining to accept Windows XP despite the fact that it keeps my camera's from downloading their work.

There is a lot of good stuff in this new system that sort of grow on a person, what I like the best is the fact that IT NEVER CRASHES!!!

Learning XP

Write On!

Jerry 4-25-2002 23:45

Hi all,
Just thought I'd update all of you. I'm in fresno now, working on a fiction piece, or rather pieces that I want to sell to a mag. It is fantasy first-person and it is in a series of stories, at least that is how it looks, it appears to be a quest, not sure how many pieces yet.

Hope to be able to pad my aching wallet soon, Keep me in your thoughts and prayers, took the CBEST, still biting my nails waiting for a response.


Laura 4-25-2002 19:07


4-25-2002 18:58

Mark - I noticed the time on both of Elaine's posts, too; but for some strangle reason, 'anatomy' lessons didn't occur to me! *Giggle* Neither did 'Experiments in Human Reproduction'. Elaine's in trouble, nah nah nah nah nah nahhhhh!

Heather 4-25-2002 17:09

Hallee, good for you, I hope it all goes smoothly. I have seen a few that go that way, and many that start out that way but someplace down the road toward court dates, it all goes to pot, and the fight begins.

I hope yours stays as friendly as these things can get.

Our son's first marriage ended on a friendly note, and it surprised me so, since for their first Christmas, his wife gave him the shock of finding her in their bed with another man. I don't know if I could have turned and walked out the way he did, and I don't think I could have kept my cool all the way through the separation, and divorce. When he called to tell us of the divorce, he related that there was no hurry, then told us that she was pregnant with her lovers baby. I advised him to file immediately so as to avoid having to pay the next 18 years for a kid that wasn't his. To my surprise, his wife stood up in court and admitted that it wasn't his child, so my nightmare never came true. In fact the dang thing was very friendly all the way through. While we didn't have any celebration dinner with her folks or anything like that, he is still on speaking terms with his X.

Found this web page, below that has a couple of great products for goosing your muse when she falls behind in her appointed rounds.

Some of it's freeware, some shareware, but it's all good stuff.

Jerry Writers TOOLS 4-25-2002 14:36

Jerry, Randall and Hallee, thank you so much for the information. Not only was it exactly what I needed, it may have stopped me from daring two people to do something stupid. I do not want to be married to Lefty, and have a brother-in-law named Gotch Eye. That was important to me for two reasons, I really wanted to try that out. It had me fascinated because I drink tons of water in plastic bottles. I guess every time I drank a big swig I thought about it. It's also important because if you are going to write about a murder, you need to know if the gun had a silencer. Not too likely I guess. It sounds like it shortens the range of the bullet so I'd have to make it an up close and personal type scene.

Gotta go. Hallee I know what you mean. Once you have the bad news you can get going and make things better. Sounds like you are making things better all the time. Where did you go for lunch? I hope it was Mexican food. Tacos, Big Salads, Refried Beans, Cheddar Cheese and Salsa over all of it, with a Dos X. I need a trip to a place where they have real mexican food.

Theme for this week? If there isn't one, could we please make up a scene in a restaurant complete with the food?

Uh....reality check. Could this sudden interest be due to the fact that I'm trying to loose a little of my winter hibernation fur?

Viv 4-25-2002 9:34


You poor thing. Listen I've been through it. It's a lot like grief. So just when you think you're done, it pops it's ugly head back up again. Anything you need, just ask.

Debra 4-25-2002 9:18


HEATHER: I don't know why the mail keeps bouncing back. Try this one.

JERRY: The glory of the whole thing is that I'm so happy this happened. People around me continue to wait for this "inevitable" breakdown that they're certain will occur. My first response once the shock of the conversation ended was relief. I have not broken down at all. The only time I've been upset has been when Kaylee has been upset. But now she has a brother or sister on the way - something she's been begging me for and couldn't understand why I wasn't capable of providing - and it has completely changed her focus on the entire situation. I think that it helps Kaylee that Dawn was my best friend and she already knew and loved her. I struggle with the moral questions - the things that are going against what she has always been told and perceived to be "right" - and I pray that it doesn't change her outlook on marriage and family in the future.

Conan and I were friends 12 years ago before we started dating and we will always be friends. I won't ever trust him implicitly again, but we will always be friends.

Thanks, Jerry.

Okay - off to work. Have a great day all!

Hallee 4-25-2002 7:05


Hi all... went to Anzac Dawn service today, and also saw the movie We Were Soldiers
Bad choice I think.. haha

Taylor 4-25-2002 5:21

Hallee - Divorce is a hard thing for all involved. It's the end of a relationship, of a family, of a contract, and sometimes of a nightmare. I hope all goes well for you and the court is as friendly as can be expected in such cases. Divorce also rings in a new lease on life, sometimes even a new life completely, with new adventures, new relationships, and romance.

I wish you strength, and peace as you go through the steps necessary to finish the work that must be done, and the life that must be led.

My last job was of an office manager, my boss even bought me a flower and a Snickers bar for Secretary day. I enjoyed the Snickers, but I'm not all that hip on flowers.

It is nice, however to be noticed, recognized for the important part you play in the organization that you dedicate most of your waking life to.

To all those who are or have been secretarys, happy your day.

Jerry 4-25-2002 0:24


Notice the strategically located apostrophe. People, why in hell do we have illiterates doing work of this sort? And doesn't someone at FLOWERS.COM check this stuff before it goes public? Well, I just thought I would add this to comments about secretary's day. For all you assistance's out there.

gariess 4-24-2002 23:15

HEATHER -- The word 'strip' twice in one paragraph. I should be grammatically outraged. Instead, somehow, because of the way NB reads from post-to-post, I got your strip comment quite soon after ELAINE's biology adventure. Didja notice that ELAINE first posted at 12:12 that she had "Biology to do" with her friend. At 12:32 she posted that it was done.

Uh, ELAINE, what biological thing can you and your friend do in 20 minutes?

Mark 4-24-2002 22:47


Not only am I taking penicillin already but I'm taking 500mg four times a day. Seems like a lot!

Debra 4-24-2002 21:29

Jerry - I'm so happy for you and your wife! Now there are more people resting easy..:oD

Hallee - you go, girl!
I've missed you, by the way! I've tried emailing you a bunch of times, and it always gets bounced back. I'll try the 'all smalls' again soon. ;o)

Heather 4-24-2002 19:03

Debra - you're very welcome - glad I could ease your worry.
Didn't know you were taking penicillin already, too - that'll curb the chances of infection for sure.
Rest easy... :oD

Heather 4-24-2002 19:00

Howdy all. What a beautiful spring day. Just hot enough to have people complaining (the high today will be around 85), with blue skies and fluffy white clouds.

Oh yeah. I filed for divorce today, too. All of the details finally got hammered out and all of the paperwork finally filled out. When I went to the courthouse it took -- literally -- five minutes. Now I just wait for a hearing date.

In the meantime, I must get back to work. I've had so many major projects going on the last few weeks that my regular job has suffered terribly. I'm afraid that soon the company is going to have to hire someone to split my duties with me. I somehow don't have the time in the 50 or 60 hours a week (depending on whether I have Kalee) that I devote to it to get all of the job done.

Have a great day all! Oh - happy Secretary's Day for those of you to whom it applies. (Since I did the divorce thing today I'm taking my secretary to lunch tomorrow.)


Hallee 4-24-2002 13:05


Good news for you!

I'm sure it feels wonderful to not to have to worry about every little thing.

You and your wife deserve all good things.

Debra 4-24-2002 12:54

Put 'didn't get suffiently...' in instead of whatever I put down. WHOOPIE! I've finished with Biology and it's just about time to go. A little quote from my Bio teacher.......
Men fight to maim, women fight to kill!
Till Niagara Falls!

Elaine 4-24-2002 12:32

Teekay: No, I have never been to Europe or Italy (though I really, REALLY want to)(but that doesn't mean my bum got suffiecently pinched either!)LOL
Jerry: Thanks for the Chocolate! Yummy! I really enjoyed it, to the last crumb and shaving.
To everybody else: hello! Don't mind me if I don't say hi personally to every one of you....my mind is boggled with all the names!
Debra: I'm glad that your gums are healing (however slowly but surely!) ((HUGS))
Well y'all, I have Biology to do with my friend, Bookie, so see y'all around!
Till Niagara Falls!

Elaine 4-24-2002 12:12


Of course you're right a thousand times over. I did know that stuff on some level. It's just when you are able to tell me that those infections have a certain way of behaving that doesn't include the way my mouth is was so comforting. I couldn't get that from them.

It seemed that I couldn't get them to say milk is usally sold in gallons.

I'm not sitting here holding you to your diagnosis. I'm still caring for my mouth rinsing and icing it and taking my penicillin. I just feel like I'm holding now. Before I wasn't sure.

So thanks is my response and I'm sticking to it.

Debra 4-24-2002 11:58

Heather, I detest your usage of me as a scapegoat!

ZZZZZZZZZz 4-24-2002 7:01

Tina - my favourite Calvin and Hobbes is:

Calvin & Hobbes are looking at the sky.
Calvin says: You know how I know there's intelligent life out there?
Hobbes: (looks at Calvin)
Calvin: Because they haven't tried to contact us!

Ok, so my memory may be a little off, and I could be meshing several images that aren't from the same strip with words that aren't quite bang on for the right strip.


If Mark sees the word strip twice in that one tiny paragraph, what will happen????

Heather 4-24-2002 7:00

Debra - the reason the nurse you spoke to couldn't confirm what she told you for certain is because a) she hasn't actually seen your gums in person, b) because she isn't a certified physician, she is not legally allowed to diagnose the same way a doctor does - nursing diagnoses are based on different criterion and are, for the most part, for the purposes of figuring out what actual care a patient needs above and beyond what the doctor has prescribed;
and c) she has to make allowances for error.

The tough part about ministering health advice is that so many conditions have similar symptoms, and because medicine is no exact science by a long shot, there is a certain amount of hit and miss - it's inevitable. Another tough part of the advice thing is that no two people are exactly alike - two people having the identical surgery may come out of it with very different results. One could have very little pain or swelling, and heal up in 10 days; the other could bleed nonstop for hours afterward, and take a month to heal. You know your body better than anyone since you're in it. If you've had a serious infection at another time, there will be certain symptom patterns that should show up again. (If not, then of course you would be wondering...)
For instance: I had scarlet fever over Christmas vacation when I was around 9 or 10. It took at least two days to confirm it medically, another week before the crappy thing started to go away. The following year I got it again, but this time I knew what it was from the feel of it, and I had the same symptoms again - only the second time my immune system kicked in a lot faster. For some reason, I tend not to show any symptoms of illness at all until I'm all of a sudden violently (and noticeably) ill. My brother, on the other hand, would start to pale the moment a germ entered holy ground.
Many times we'd be on our way somewhere, no clue that I was already host to a barrage of some foul intruders, only to be front and centre stage (usually very public) when the ship would capsize - belly up, bonfires of the inner workings going full roar. (Uh, sorry, I'm getting far too abstract... let's just say not even I knew how sick I was until suddenly, I'm puking on someone's shoes)

Should you be a person who is prone to this sort of full frontal germ attack, then being on constant lookout for any telltale sign is wise. If you're of the lucky bundle, it would be a while from the first symptom until a full-blown cellular battle.

I think I have long ago meandered from the purpose for posting...
time to crawl back under the covers and kick some germ ass.

Wasn't it only three days ago I was not-a-cloud-in-the-sky healthy? Or so it seemed. Nasty wasty cold virus!
Out, out, damned spots!

Heather 4-24-2002 6:51

Woohoo! Jerry, that's great news! So glad that the system has finally recognised the truth.
I also like the statistics you posted. Those doctor/hospital statistics are scary. My grandma was nearly one of those numbers a few years back, and I have come to not trust my doctor... ANY doctor... until I have several opinions and have done my own research.
Those stats - and the juxtaposition of them - reminds me of the one I tell people who think skydiving is dangerous. A higher percentage of skiers die skiing each year than skydivers die skydiving. And yet it's perfectly normal and accepted to hit the slopes. What a silly world we live in.

Another little known medical fact/statistic is that acetaminophen - the main thing in Tylenol(R)- is toxic, resulting in hundreds of deaths around the world each year from misuse. Yet herbals that could cause complications no where near that severe are banned in many countries. No second guesses as to who pays who to make those decisions.

Heather, I sympathise, and am cringing for the onslaught. Do you use any homeopathic remedies? I've found both Alum Cepa (sp?) and Pollinosan help a lot, although the Alum Cepa made me itchy.
Artistic integrity is always hard to balance. It's impossible to not be influenced by what we see/read, but it's equally impossible to create your own piece if you can't step beyond those influences. In college I watched so many students wanting good grades who would switch their style depending on the professor. Those were two of the things I disliked about art school; the subjectivity and the pandering to please the prof. We were there to discover our own voice/vision, not do whatever it took to please the prof. Bad enough we have to do that in the real world; college was an opportunity to NOT do that.

Wow I'm into ranting today. Guess it's because I'm back in the middle of trying to fish my way out of a muck hole of life decisions. My life reminds me of a specific 'Calvin and Hobbes' cartoon, where Calvin declares 'I stand firm in my belief of what's right! I refuse to compromise my principles!' Then his mom makes him take a bath and he says 'I don't need to compromise my principles, because they don't have the slightest bearing on what happens to me anyway.' Yup, that's exactly what life's been like lately.

Blue(er) Skies!

Tina 4-24-2002 2:21

Beer for everyone!

No, wait, Wine for everyone!

Ah, no, Champaign for everyone!

Well, no, wait, not this crowd, CHOCOLATE FOR EVERYONE!

Got great news in the mail today. What was obvious to most everyone who ever saw my wife walk, what was very obvious to her Doctors, who gave her ever stronger arthritis meds and pain killers. What was obvious to myself and of course to my wife, was finally obvious to the Social Security Administration, her award letter arrived in the mail today.

If we could, we would be dancing in the street, this will bring an end to selling off our belongings to pay for bills, with her check we will be able to afford the bills, the meds, and the groceries. With her check, we don't have to decide weather to fix the car, or try and get by with my old pickup.

Yep, it takes a load off both our minds, and the minds of our creditors who were in reality wringing their hands behind closed doors in anticipation of a fight for payment.

Strange day today though, it reminds us where we live. The morning was glorious, the mercury rose ever steady till at noon, it hit the 72F mark. We took a drive down to the lake to see how the campgrounds weathered the winter, it was so nice to just drive through, to enjoy the fresh air, the sun and the lake. When we got home, we went out for soft ice cream to celebrate the good news.

At two o'clock, the wife noticed that we left the windows down on my truck and went out to close them. When she got in the house, she closed the doors and windows, explaining that there was a chill in the air.

At three o'clock, the mercury dropped to 37 degrees, and the wind hit it's highest gust of 85 miles per hour. Across town, strong limbs of trees broke off and littered the street. The straight line winds dropped off to a steady 60 miles per hour and stayed that way till after 4:00 PM. The wind subsided, the mercury began to rise again and stopped at 45, then the rain began. It's still raining, but the wind has gone down, and another day in South Dakota ends, and I'm off to bed for a nice peaceful night of sleep, free of the worry of where the next dollar will come from to pay the now worried gas man.

Jerry 4-24-2002 1:24

Jerry: Lol at the joke... Of course alot more deaths are not caused by guns... Personally I hate guns, but thats just me... But, that doesn't mean I want them banned.

I took the grammar test. My grammar is terrible

Taylor 4-24-2002 0:50

Deb here's something to ponder as your poor gums throb in agony form the trauma they have suffered most recently:

S T A T I S T I C S...

Number of physicians in the US: 700,000.
Accidental deaths caused by Doctors per year: 120,000.
Accidental deaths per physician: 0.171
(U.S. Dept. of Health & Human Services)
Number of gun owners in the US: 80,000,000.
Number of accidental gun deaths per year: 1,500.
Accidental deaths per gun owner: 0.0000188
Statistically, doctors are approximately 9,000 times more dangerous than gun owners.

FACT: Not everyone has a gun, but everyone has at least one Doctor.

Please alert your friends to this alarming threat. We must ban doctors before this gets out of hand.

As a Public Health Measure I have withheld the statistics on lawyers for fear that the shock might cause people to seek medical aid !

Jerry 4-24-2002 0:30


Well yes, all that is true.

The thing is I am getting mixed messages from them. You can not get an actual doctor on the phone and I get a nurse. She always tells me she is sure everything is fine but at the same time doesn't want to commit to FINE.

I tell her what is going on and she thinks it's okay too just like you do.

The doctor did tell me things, unfortunately after the surgery when I was suffering from the loopy soup they injected into me. So I guess it's a little information gap you could say. I was given the big clues but I always have other questions that pop up like should my gums still look like they could give birth at any minute.

Thanks again.


Debra 4-23-2002 23:15

You mean strep or staph? As in streptococcus and stapholococcus...
Actually, Debra, because you mentioned that the swelling is reduced a bit each day, and there's no unusual pain, exudate, and you're probably not running a fever, you don't have an infection. Swelling doesn't always mean infection, though it is something to be careful and avoid.
I would think that your oral surgeon discussed the post-op expectations and procedures with you - which should have included how long to expect the swelling to last, and what any trouble signs would be. Your oral surgeon would surely have given you a regimen to follow, and a number to call in case of any burning questions.
Guess you're also lucky that there are several (ex)nurses who happen to be a part of the notebook family.
Have your cake through a straw and learn to relax a bit.

Heather 4-23-2002 22:59

Oh Heather:

Thank you thank you.

Thank you thank you thank you!

YOu don't know how happy that makes me.

Here I am thinking Step or Staff. You know what I mean?

I owe you!

Big time!

Debra 4-23-2002 21:00

Debra - I've worked in the medical field as well.
Everyone's a little different, but in general, I'd say 5 days after gum surgery most people will still have swelling. In fact, two weeks for surgery such as you describe would be what I call an average length of time before the swelling recedes.
If, perchance, there is still an amazing amount of swelling evident after three weeks, I'd speak to the dental surgeon and see what's going on.
Gums on the whole are very sensitive tissue; sensitive tissue swells with very little abrasion, let alone surgerical incision.
There is no need to panic, Debra. :o)

Heather 4-23-2002 20:44


You worked in the medical field. How long should the swelling last in the soft tissue inside the mouth at and around the stitches.

It's been five days and the swelling has gone down every day since but still quite swollen inside my mouth.

Debra 4-23-2002 20:29


handstandhandstandhandstandhandstand stop to scratch SASQYbehind the earshandstandhandstandhandstandhandstandhandstandhandstandhandstandhandstandhandstand

P.S. ELAINE: are you the Elaine who went to Italy (or somewhere European) last year sometime?)
And if you are, did you get your bum sufficiently pinched?

Teekay 4-23-2002 20:06

That's for saying you hate me.

Gin 4-23-2002 19:33

Sasquatch! Great to see you, fuzzy buddy!

An old take on nothing new:

Laugh and the world laughs with you,
Fart, and you stand alone.

Hey, it was funny to me the first time I heard it, and every time thereafter...

Heather 4-23-2002 19:32

Carol - I'd like to see someone 'stive' one of these days. 'Til then, how about 'strive'?


One slap, two to go, and *urgllle* I hate Gin.

Heather 4-23-2002 19:30

Tina - It seems we've given hot pursuit to the same circular aguments at one time or another! There is a fine, often raw edge between dangling the message in front of noses and simply letting it be seen - or unseen.
There came a point where I could no longer contemplate what I would paint unless I hypothesized every reaction to it - so I went back to illustration (and from there, other things). Also, when I sit down to create, should a single care of what others may think intrude, often I cannot continue. It's not that I worry about reaction any longer, or whether the intended message gets through ~ I am far more concerned with how this force, this veritable wall of opinions might influence my work.
I'd rather it didn't.
With writing this dilemma comes in a less abstract form, but applies just as fully,
as you mentioned.
I would have to say that I certainly do carve my sentences with clarity in mind, but not only clarity; there is a particular feel I'm after as well.
(Sure, you're thinking, tell me that's not abstract!)
The point is that in writing there is much more room for explanation; but this too can backfire. Lay out too much for the reader and leave no surprises, no space to interpret freely. At the risk of redundancy, I'll just close with: BALANCE. A good bit of writing has both easily spotted messages and vapour-like inuendos. And then there is subtext... (!!!)

Carol - there is a tender balance - stive for it!

*Disclaimer: Heather has been taking far too many allergy pills in order to stay somewhat mucous-free and half-way sane. Three slaps and a mickey of Gin ought to fix her*

Heather 4-23-2002 19:28

Hallee and Viv"

I didn't forget you.

I'm not feeling very well from the surgery. My tissue is still swollen inside my mouth at the site of the stitches. I had it done on Friday afternoon and here it is Tuesday night and still inside of my mouth a mess.


Thanks for your comments on the Cape. Did you see Gariess's remarks. He puts me to shame. The Cape is really a nice place to vist and to live. How many places can claim that?

Debra 4-23-2002 18:57

hello humans persons. i sasquatch have come again from a long journey and am once again among you. we Yeti are most alarmed over what happenings in this world. Yeti are asking to please not do the hurt any more. we know the One is not pleased with these things.
I sasquatch have heard that more footprints have been found. these are not sasquatch footprints, but trick from young humans persons who hide and make laughter over this. i must go.

sasquatch 4-23-2002 18:44

Carol, that's a conversation I know well. Subjectivity of the viewer/reader. When I was in art school (was that really a decade ago? Help!) we used to spend long hours discussing/debating that one. There was the 'all reactions are valid, regardless of the kind of reaction, there fore art is good if it causes a reaction' argument, and the 'reactions must be guided by the artist, to validate their message/statement' argument, and the 'art is only good if the viewer understands your message, therefore art should not have too much room for alternate interpretations' argument. Wow, those were the days! Eating cafeteria lunch while debating art theory. (pleasantly reminiscent sigh) The arguments completely apply to writing.
I love reading pieces that leave me room to find my own meanings, but not when it goes too far. I've read short stories that leave me grasping for some clue as to what the author intended, to the extent that I get nothing from it. Then it becomes art for art's sake, and I never have agreed with that. Art for art's sake panders to an elitest attitude, something I've always detested. It is different from 'art for beauty's sake' or 'art for the sake of teaching' or 'art for the sake of form'.

Okay I've rattled on enough. Suffice to say, I think an author/artist needs to guide their piece enough that their vision is understood, and then let go so that the viewer can interact on their own footing. So Carol, 'choose your battles'. In some parts of your story it will be important to keep a strict guiding hand, in others you can let loose. In your first draft, don't worry about it too much. ;-)

Blue skies!

Tina 4-23-2002 16:21

Hello all :)

Well, its been far too long for me again. I see there are seveal new names on the board -- a big HELLO to each and every one of you.

An even bigger hug to everyone else. I'd love to comment to each post since my own last one, but I do know my limitations. Well, I think I do. I seem to keep discovering new ones everytime I turn around!

My writing? Dribbles and drabs. I've even got two issues of Writers Digest to read. I used to read and devour them immediately. It seems most of my writing the past few weeks has taken the form of looooong emails to a few select people. I've been getting rather chatty. Chatty about childhood memories. Chatty about recent changes in my health. Memories are good. Health ... well... just another annoyance deciding to plague me. One that says "I'm going to be by your side the rest of your life whether you like it or not." Sheesh! Now both hubby and I walk around limping. We make quite a pair these days. At least mine will subside from time to time. But if it attacks my fingers I'm going to scream bloody murder! Don't take my fingers!!!! LOL

During a recent conversation with hubby, I related one of my writing "blocks" and found a different way to look at the problem that may push me past that midway point. In the past, I've gotten bogged down by trying to write my story in such a precise way to make sure the reader sees the same story I'm trying to write. That's stupid of me. Everyone is different. Everyone brings different values to what they read. Since I enjoy observing the differences in people, I should expect and enjoy the different ways people interpret my work. What does it matter if they see what I meant or something else? As long as they enjoyed it?? Does any of this make sense to anyone else?

And that's all I have for now. :) Take care everyone and have a great day playing with words.

Carol 4-23-2002 14:10

I spelled it right!!! Yahoo!!!!!!!!!!! Speaking of yahoo i need to check my email...
Till Niagara Falls

Elaine 4-23-2002 12:19

Oh well, snow is snow is snow and always will be. ((SIGH)) I'm just glad that we're not in the place where I was originally raised. It had two seasons, winter and fall. Of course, winter had three stages, winter-Sep/Dec. prethaw-Jan/April, and thaw-May/July and then of course fall-August/mid-Sept.(maybe, if we were lucky!) I tell you, it's so much nicer here because it snows just under 2 feet and we have snow days. Where I used to be it had to be just under 8 feet to really count as a snow day, but then the windchills would get -40 or lower sometimes and we'd stay at home( most of the time anyway) The ground would be covered with snow until May/June and one time it even snowed on the 4th of July! I've nicknamed that place as Frigeria, it describes the place perfectly...frigid, frozen people standing as still as statues as the temperture drops to -55 (not including any windchill!) I remember the olden days when my parents would heat a mug filled with water and throwing it up into a drift to see if it would freeze in mid-throw. I get a chill up and down my spine just thinking of it! Okay, enough of that, just a little reminiscing (okay, i KNOW i spelled that wrong!) on what it was like. I hope I haven't frozen your computer screen with my drifting thoughts of piled up snow in odd places...
Till Niagara Falls!

Elaine 4-23-2002 12:12

That should be "breast" not brest. Using different keybord and sometomes it skip on the 's

howard 4-23-2002 7:40

RANDALL - Your "shooting rats in a chicken coop" reminded me -- we occasionally raise some chickens, and have a coop built in one corner of our barn. I've shot plenty of rats in there late at night, with .22 birdshot, which doesn't make a lot of noise. and doesn't travel far. I've even used it to shoot voles in the cellar (they come in with the firewood), and the ricochet stings a bit, but it's effective on them.
I have used heavier artillery in the coop, though -- back a couple of years ago we started losing chickens. We'd find them with their throats torn out, and maybe a chunk of brest missing. I waited inside the barn, just outside the coop door. There's a hand hole cut in the plywood door(too cheap to buy a knob) and I had the muzzle of my 12 gauge shotgun pointed through, directly at the plastic covering the window. After a 15 minute wait I heard scratching, then saw a masked face poke through the window. I waited to make sure (there's a night light in the coop) before I pulled the trigger. Brer coon got a different supper that night, and the chickens never even budged! What a roar!

howawrd 4-23-2002 7:39


Morning, everyone. :)

TEEKAY: ((((HUG)))) right back at ya. Sorry the muse has gotten you down. You shouldn't quit or think you aren't talented - not the way you weave a short story. Oh - I took the caps out of my email address. Maybe that will work. Oh - and I absolutely saw the party - thanks.

MARK: Yes. That's very true. Perhaps one day I shall.

MARY: Hi! How is the website going? Are you still selling your bead-ery. (Is beadery a word?)

MEL: Thanks for the extra hugs. :)

DEBRA: Ouch. Sorry, hon. I hope you feel better.

VIV: Call an anqique dealer, or send one an email. I'm sure you could find an antique dealer with a website. Explain what you're doing and inquire if you could ask several questions.

Have a great day all!

Hallee 4-23-2002 5:31

Cute grammar test, Jerry!

That's exactly what I need to be thinking of at this hour ~ Donald Duck.

G'night friends,
I've been bitten by the allergy bug. Has anyone seen my left side?

Heather 4-23-2002 3:01


Well, my computer did a weird thing. In my 'favourites' file, my 'writing' links disappeared. Kaput. Vanished. Gone. Not in the recycle bin, not moved, not anywhere. ALL my links. Good thing this place was in my history, or I'd be doing a search for it! So here is a silent, despairing plea... anyone with good links to authors, publishers, e-zines, and the luck, please send me the links! I had years worth of links in there, and (hiding her head in shame she admits) not backed up anywhere.
And I figure, if Murphy is at work here, the old file will show up again just as soon as I have a new one started. ;-)

Oops, muffins are done must get them out before they burn!
Blue skies!

Tina 4-23-2002 1:55

Hi all!

I'll have to take that grammar test...but not now. :D I'm writing a short story - it's getting very good.

Jack's social was good, though I didn't know anyone besides Jack and Fran, but everyone was nice. The food was delicious especially the dish Jack made - it was a soup from Figi made with coconut cream, bell pepper, onion, chili and fish (and probably some other stuff I'm forgetting). I didn't thinkn I was going to like it since I'm not a huge coconut or chili fan but I pleasently surprised - kudos to Jack on his excellent cullinary skills. :D

That's about it. Guess I'll get back to my short story. :)

Allein Peachick's Gallery 4-22-2002 23:33


I found out that happened to John Kennedy on the phone to someone and it was the first time in my life I had ever used the expression "SHUT UP" Unfortunately it was my father I was talking to. I'll still never forget the immediate silence on his side while he checked to see if it were him I was talking to.

Debra 4-22-2002 22:02



Have been reading Ed Abbey, writer of the southwest. I came across a site that promoted his works and listed several quotations...

My Favorite... "Like any writer, I'd rather be read than dead. Like any serious ‘author' I'd rather be dead than not read at all."

On the subject of suppressors (silencers)...

There is a lot of information, most bogus about them. Jerry is right on, regarding his desertion on handguns. Semiautomatic pistols, (all weapons in fact) are difficult to suppress, that is, as Jerry points out because of the gas operation. Revolvers are not prone to suppress effectively (very important when stalking enemy guards at night) because of a minute gap between cylinder and barrel. Gas escapes this gap and if the suppressor is very restrictive, a lot of gas and noise will escape. Also, suppressors restrict bullet ballistics and resultant performance. Mitchell Werbell made significant technological advances when he designed a suppressor for the infamous "Ingram" machine pistol developed by CIA weapons designer Gordon Ingram. Werbell's suppressors used pressure valves inside the "cans" versus the time tested steel wool approach. I have witnessed an Ingram M-10 (45 caliber) on full auto with one of Mitch's suppressors attached. The weapon makes no more noise than someone knocking real fast on a wooden door. And as the Ingram rate of fire is 16 rounds per second, one would have to knock really fast indeed.

Also...as Jerry knows, there are two separate, "booms" when a weapon is fired, be it pistol or rifle. The first is gas exiting the barrel from rapid combustion of powder. Powder in a bullet does not explode when ignited by the primer. Any Navy Gunners Mate knows that powder burns rapidly, and different types of gunpowder burn at different rates, ie, varying rates of gas expansion. The second "boom" is when the exiting projectile breaks the sound barrier, approximately 600 mph at ground level after it leaves the barrel.

Next time your out in the woods with a friend lay down a hundred yards away from him and have him fire a rifle over you. You will hear a "crack" immediately after the initial "boom!" Uh... however... make sure this is a GOOD friend and not mentioned in your will or any life insurance policy you may have. And if your wife seems to be REALLY good friends with your friend...take my word for it.

Reduction of this second sound signature may be handled by downloading the amount of powder in a projectile and/or varying the rate of gunpowder combustion. This keeps the bullet sun-sonic and relatively quite. And decreases performance as well. There is always a downside isn't there?

Persons who manufacture and used illegal suppressors are easily identified...missing a hand because the bullet failed to exit the "can"... shattered it and pistol. They are usually called Lefty. And persons missing a right eye because the rifle exploded for the same reason... called Gotch Eye as a rule. In other words, best left alone.

Suppressors were at one time legal to own and use. What? It's true. While now highly illegal, free ticket to a Federal Farm for fun in the sun, at one time suppressed rifles were used to shoot rats and mice and predators inside production level chicken and turkey barns. Imagine the effect upon a thousand hens as a farmer blasts a fox with a .22 rifle just after midnight, sans suppressor! Would set egg production back a month while increasing bowel movements three fold. The so called adverse "cackle factor!"

So to effectively "suppress" a rifle or pistol is difficult, something which Hollywood and writers gloss over. And why ruin a perfectively good potato by shooting a gun in it?



Randall 4-22-2002 20:03

Attention Grammarainans: click the link to take a test.

Jerry Grammar test 4-22-2002 18:29


I think there is little news value in Cape Cod water except when the son of a former president flies a plane into it.

Don't worry about the bridges; they were built in the thirties by democrats. The reason we have so many republicans here is because when the democrats finished building the bridges, the republicans refused to drive over them.


In case you haven't noticed, I am always kidding.

gariess 4-22-2002 18:27

Elain - must have been the snow that passed through here. It's all gone today, with the temps getting near 70. Sure different than yesterday.

Jerry 4-22-2002 18:27

Gariess - I don't think I would want to hold that revolver with a potato pressed on the end, it might work, but I have seen several old Smith & Wesson revolvers with bulged and blown barrels the result of plugged barrels. Most were from police officers who got some bad reloads from buddies, the reloads were to weak to push the bullet all the way out the end of the barrel, not paying attention the officer then fired a good round,and the barrel failed. It probably wouldn't with something as soft as a potato, but holding it on the end might be a problem, as when fired, the bullet pushes out all the air in front of it, making a lot of pressure, in fact when a handgun is pressed into the skin of a human and fired, the pressure in front of the bullet penetrates the skin before the bullet. It might work, but I don't think I would try it.

Viv - I don't know if that would work, it probably wouldn't. It seems to me that the Glock, much like the Colt Mod 1911A1 semi-automatic pistol has what is known as a slide interlock device that prohibits the firearm from discharging if the slide isn't in full battery. This was in fact usually a question in the old Army Promotion Boards, name all the safety's on the 1911A1, the slide interlock was usually one that was forgotten. So if the fellow had to press the gun against the bottle, and he pushed too hard, the gun would fail to fire. If he pressed too lightly, the seal wouldn't be good enough to be effective. Then considering the actions after firing, the slide automatically (Semi-automatic pistol) moves to the rear at a very rapid rate, and again the seal would be broken. The design of the firearm is supposed to stay in battery until the round exits the weapon, but I don't know if I Would put that point of physics to the test.

As you said, the accuracy would be questionable, if the bullet had to travel any distance after exiting the seat, because most auto seats contain springs, lots of foam, and a steel shell in the back that keeps the shape of the seat.

But all that said, it may indeed work as he said, or he could have been applying just a bit of literary license.

This is the second time I typed this, who knew if you have your computers networked that MS Messenger would put up a stupid question because you are signed in on two machines, and lock the internet connection till you click on the OK button! Guess I have a lot to learn on high speed internet. This and I am only on at 256K, but that's four times as fast as I was getting I guess so I shouldn't complain. Now if I could just get a USB keyboard so I can use my new machine, the one I killed when I lost my temper a couple of days ago, then I would again be a happy camper.

Oh we did get confirmation on our reservation at the lake campgrounds over my birthday next month, boy am I looking forward to camping again, I sure do miss that in the winter.

Oh and our son asked if we could keep our grand daughter for three weeks in June, of course we said we would be thrilled. She is very happy with the idea too, she just loves it down here, and we love to have her. Going to put her to work at the wife's annual garage sale, the one she holds in the front yard and not the garage. Maybe we will advertise it as a yard sale. Got a bunch of old gun accessories that are going on that, ammo and such as well as targets, and some of my old gunsmithing tools. Hope they all go.

Write ON

Jerry 4-22-2002 18:20

Hello there everyone... Let me introduce myself I am a writers muse who frequents here... Hope to entangle several conversations with my subject's fellow writers.

Born to write
Live to fight

Hope you don't mind me introducing myself. Thank you kindly dear sirs and madams

Mr Snapdog 4-22-2002 13:01



That was remarkable. Now I'm wondering how safe the bridges might be now and in the future. I didn't know all that stuff about the Cape. I wonder why it isn't discussed more in the news. I still would love to be a full time resident of the Cape. I hope to be there some time before two thousand years from now. Some where inside me I have always felt that this is where I would go. I love water and everything about it. Well, except the feeling of something living touching my feet while I swim. I think the guy from King Of Queens said it best. He has the same scream for seaweed touching his feet as he has for a shark. Me too!

I love the smell and the sounds of water. I think so well when I am near it. In fact, I don't actually have to go in it to be happy. I'd much rather have a built in pool, indoor to be more specific. Does that make me a old women. I don't care if it does. But I have heard complaints about that opinion of mine. I do go in the ocean and lakes, but I'm always cautious and fully aware I'm on someone elses turf.

Debra 4-22-2002 12:38

WHO SENT THE SNOW??????? Yesterday it snowed until we had a couple inches on the ground!!!! My fingers are frozen and stiff and I'm having problems typing again! Just to show you, I'll write a sentence without deleting any thing. I dno't know what i'll write yet for my sindgle sentence but i'm sure i'll figure sometihk out. (Winks and Smiles)
Welcome Jenny! Teekay: I'm glad you didn't leave, each person here is like a scented breeze, but I'd miss your unique scent lingering around. Well, got to go everyone bell's about to ring!
Till Niagara Falls!

Elaine 4-22-2002 12:31

Tina: Beautiful post! Thank you!

Viv again 4-22-2002 6:05

Gariess: Too cute. Loved your poem and am only kidding by my nit picking about yipping and yapping! Hope you are too. Still what a wonderful poem and completely politically incorrect. I'm still laughing. Oh what a ruckus that would cause if read in some circles! I keep grinning at the thought.

Jerry: Thanks! I was curious because something seemed strange about that. In the novel the muzzle of the gun is inserted into the bottle and the bottle is jammed against the back seat. He shoots the guy through the heart, the bullet is silenced (probably preventing having his ear drums blasted out, but I'll bet those suckers were ringing!) The bullet goes completely straight, through the bottle, the back seat and hits the guy right in the heart. I sure wouldn't want to try to do that myself. Seems like something might be in the way.

It seemed like a pretty good novel and was written before 9-11. I didn't want to read it because it arrived after 9-11 so I picked it up finally this weekend and read it because it was a gift. Whew! It wasn't exactly my choice of topic but was a page turner. I could accept the way he shot his victims but wanted to see if a person who knew guns would say, "Garbage."

Actually, we're going to have to try that when we finally get back to the states and my husband resumes target shooting. It is something he did with his father who died last year and his brothers (still alive and one just won a Glock in a contest after spending more to win the contest than it cost to buy the gun!) He enjoys it because there are many memories. So I'll dare them to try it out and listen when they come home to the results of the adventure. Sounds safe enough if you wear goggles to prevent an eye injury.

It's the little details that make writing mysteries or science or even regular short stories difficult.

Everyone: Here's one of those details that is bothering me. It could trip me up. In one of my stories I have a woman and her husband go to an estate sale. I have never been to one. Is it an auction? Is it simply a walk through the house and buy like a garage sale. Is it cash and carry or could you write a check for a large item and have a credit check run by the person in charge of the sale?
Has anyone ever been to an ESTATE SALE. Last time we were home we drove by a sign that said this. We were on our way to the airport or I'd have checked it out. I asked a friend and she told me why they were done but we didn't get into detail. Thanks!

Viv 4-22-2002 6:02

On silencers,

The noise made from a gun is caused by the rapid propulsion of air from the barrel. Silencers are things that attach to the barrel and absorb the air in a relatively silent way. Stephen Hunter, in one of his novels, describes a method of making a silencer that involves steel wool as a packing. I have also heard that a potato can serve as a silencer for a revolver. stick the barrel into the end of a nice grade A Idaho and make sure your target is fairly close since potatos greatly interfere with accuracy. You may prefer a potahto, of course. But then, I'm only yapping.

gariess 4-22-2002 2:48


You say potato
and I say potahto

You say tomato
and I say tomahto

You say Nip
and I say Jap

You say yip
and I say yap

Let's call the whole thing off.

gariess 4-22-2002 2:35

One other thing, Debra, about Cape Cod. This cape is actually a geological anomaly, and is only expected to last about another two thousand years. The estimates keep getting shorter as global warming increases. The part of the Cape that extends northward for thirty miles from Orleans to Provincetown is just a big sandbar that attached to the southern part after the last ice age. It will be the first to go. In fact, I four-wheeled down from Orleans to Chatham where a storm broke the barrier beach between the Atlantic and Pleasant bay. That was early in the nineties. You could flip a pebble across the water to the other end. I watched the sand crumble into the sea for a while and drove back to Orleans. That break is now miles wide and a new beach exists along the Chatham bars on the landward side. All that in just a few short years, really. Trouble is that the storms are hitting the other side as well. There are properties on both sides that no longer have the nice back yards that once overlooked the sea. Some don't even have the houses.

So if you want to retire here, pick a spot that is fairly well inland. And don't wait too long. Actually, Sandwich will probably be the last place to go since it borders on the mainland. Your friend chose well.

gariess 4-22-2002 2:28


The Cape Cod Canal is an ocean driven waterway between two major Atlantic bays on either side of the Cape. There is approximately a two to three hour difference in high tides between the two bays and only seven miles of canal. The rise and fall is moderately high, as Ocean tides go, on both ends, around eight feet. This makes for for some really fast moving water. The canal is very wide to accommodate big shipping. The whole idea behind its existence is to shorten the shipping time for coastal vessels, and to offer a safe alternative to the treacherous waters of the outer (east facing) Cape. The east Cape waters have more recorded sinkings than any other coast in the nation.

The pine trees are of a couple of different varieties. Scrub pine, along with scrub oak, is the short stuff that grows in a lot of places, especially in the dune areas. Pitch pine, sometimes called Virginia Pine grows taller. Until early in the last century, all the trees on the Cape were harvested for ship building and construction along the Atlantic Coast. There were huge trees on Cape Cod before this took place. The indians who lived here before our ancestors came lived along coastal areas where they fished and hunted. The forests were places with tall trees and sparse undergrowth. There was a network of trails between the lands of the different tribes. These forests, since the lumbering, are now too choked with new growth in many places to even walk into.

There is a church on the north side that has a pine wall panel over seven feet in width, an indication of how enormous the original growth trees grew to be, since the church panel is a single cut. The trees that are here now are all secondary and tertiary growth. Mostly oak and pitch pine. The oak trees, when they are left to grow in a clearing can become huge, but in the woods they crowd one another for living space and the survival rate is not great, They don’t get very tall. The same for the pines. In the estuarial areas a lot of different trees grow, and there is some holly in certain spots (very difficult to transplant.) Ornamental trees do very well and account for the largest trees on the cape. Mostly along the King’s Highway on the north side. A lot of these were probably planted two hundred years ago or more.

gariess 4-22-2002 2:07

Oh forgot to mention, we made the trip despite the snow and rain, had a great time, but had to go 30 miles out of the way, each way to avoid one mile of road construction just east of town, because of the mud, the construction crew closed the highway to all traffic.

The Joint party went very well, and we had a very nice visit with the kids, even got in one game of Pinochle before we headed back south.

New thing here, I'm sure it's probably this way everywhere else, but now the gas stations in North Dakota will now longer accept out of state checks. Good thing we didn't have much farther to drive, had to make the whole trip on one tank of gas, I was getting a bit worried as I neared home, and the gauge floated over the big E, but we did make it allright. Guess I might have to accept one of those hundreds of credit card apps that keep flooding my mailbox. They all look to come from different companies, but when you read the fine print they are all from Capitol One, and digging deeper into the fine print, it says there is a 80 dollar application fee, plus 7 bucks a month fees, in addition to the 23.9 percent interest, and an additional fee if you don't use the card every month.

Jerry 4-22-2002 0:56

Now comming to you from my old dial up network, as my new DSL is down for the count.

Viv yes, it is a fact, you can use a plasic pop bottle for a makeshift silencer, and I understand it works quite well ONCE, then of course the bottle is ruined, and doesn't function as a silencer anymore. I've never seen it done, except in books on the subject. It seems to me that you have to tape it onto the gun barrel, and on the Glock that I used to have (9mm) there wasn't enough barrel sticking out to work that way, but I guess lit-lic you can indeed make a silk purse out of a pigs ear.

As far as firing from inside a vehicle, I had this buddy when I first got on the PD, here that did that. He had a S&W Mod 29 .44 Mag, ala Dirty Harry. Carried it with him all the time on and off duty. One day, as he tells it, he topped the hill south of town and saw some ducks swimming on a pond. He decided to see if he could hit one with his big .44, only problem, they were on the passenger side of his pickup. Well he figures that's OK, he has the passenger window open, so he lets go with a blast of full .44 mag power. As he later told it he has no idea if he hit a duck, but when we asked him anything for the next week or two, all he said was "huh"

Haven't talked to this guy for years now, but about five years after the incident, I ran into him, and he was wearing a hearing aid in one ear. I don't know if that was what did it, but it sure could have. Of course this guy has blown up more powder then a whole Battalion of Basic Trainees at the rifle range during Basic Training, so it could have come from that too.

I once visited him at his "hole" he had out in the middle of a cow pasture, with only a prairie trail leading out. When I got there, he had a fairly nice trailor house, where he, his wife and six year old son lived. After the "grand tour" of his gun works, we went out doors, where he had his six year old show me how good he was with the old Machine Gun that he picked up on the reservation. The kid was good with the gun, and it only took me about six minutes more to gather up my wife and kids and hit the cow trail out of there. Haven't seen him since, but I hear he had a big fire, lost the hundreds of guns that he had in his collection. His wife left him taking the kid, and he has since remairied and lives some forty miles from here. As far as I'm concerned, that's just about far enough away for me.

Write ON!

Jerry Ericsson 4-22-2002 0:50


Hi all!

The sun has a different quality on spring days, being bright but not hot. It shines with the promise of rebirth on fresh green sprigs on the hawthorn trees, with the delight of a child on small ripples on the lake, with wise clarity on the granite of the cliff face. The motes of insects float in the air, and then a tiny furry predator interupts their idyll. Flittering on translucent wings no wider than my hand, a tiny bat appears in the bright sun. Not a passing shadow in the dusk, but a playfully darting bit of fluff in the daylight. Does the bat find extra freedom in the springtime sun? It turns and spins, chasing tiny flits through the air, not shy of the sun. An agile dive; a bug caught from mid-air. Out across the water, then back over my head and into the trees, it disappears into the forest.

Just came in from a nice ramble in a nearby park along the lake. Almost warm enough for swimming ;-) NOT! Had a nice little encounter with a bat, a few ducks came to visit, and a preening crow hung out for awhile. Very nice way to spend a sunny spring day.

Blue skies!

Tina 4-21-2002 22:08

MARK -- Nice! You've indeed caught that epiphany! I've felt it, but was never able to put it into words. Thanks!

howard 4-21-2002 12:44

Debra: Amazing and interesting descriptions of Cape Cod! It sounds like a wonderful vacation.

Gariess: Here I do yip! not yap! My vacation to Yap is going to be an armchair travel. I'm grounded by a job until July 15th.

Heather: Nice! I did learn something I could do with the computer. I'm going to show that to my daughter. She'll love it.

Jenny: I've got a secret for you, we only LOOK like Veteran writers because we've gotten old. Inside we're as scared as you when we take out our copies of the Writer's Market. The trick to looking like a veteran is to get a bunch of wrinkles and a few gray hairs. Deal is, if you write well enough to sell, they don't care what age you are. So, don't worry about appearances here, I'm just starting to get up my courage to open the book and try it myself. We're here to encourage each other to get those things out there and help each other iron out problems that might be holding us up.

Jerry. I just read this book called The Lion's Game by Nelson Demille. It was interesting but there was one point that really bothered me. Can you use a plastic bottle like a bottle water comes in as a silencer? This guy had his bad guy drink the water, and put the muzzle of the gun into the empty bottle (The guns he used were a military 45. A Glock. It bothered me. Wouldn't the gun Ricochet? Also if you fire a pistol inside a car doesn't it hurt your ears. A noise that loud going off in an enclosed space...could your eardrums pop? I don't know much about guns but some of the ideas there bothered me. I loved the book butlately I'm getting hung up on details. It is a page turner and that's what counts but still, I always have this big ? above my head when I read about things that are new to me and interesting.

Carol: I did it! I did get something. Too cool huh.

Viv 4-21-2002 10:34


You are right about that canel. I have never, never in my life seen a current like the one in that canel. What's up with that?

I think someday when I'm successful and my kids are on their own, I'm going to be a full time resident of the Cape.

One thing though, I always wondered about why the pine trees don't grow as high as one would expect them to.

Any ideas?

Debra 4-21-2002 10:12

Just winding down from the social. Had a great time and lots of good conversations and major divergence from the diet. Can we say cheesecake and chocolate chip cookies. Oh, well. Good to meet Allein again.

I know I have not had time to get back to implementing the Workbook, but I am hoping to have some time to try to getting it to work again. Sorry for the interminable delay. Any way, off to bed and hoping to get some diving in tomorrow. We were up at 6:30 this morning so we could go out diving. Got down to 90 feet at Seacrest before I started to get low on air. Saw a variety of interesting stuff. Anyway, off to bed. Nighty night.

Jack 4-21-2002 3:36

The snow keeps coming, lost my internet ADSL connection last night about 5 PM worked till midnight with no results, worked till 8 AM then called tech support, they knew nothing (these are the guys who wanted to buy my book on windows ME when they were here to install DSL) they sent me to their tech support, he worked four hours, then let me go, with no results. Worked another few hours, got frustrated, killed my new 1 gig machine (It's a goner the plug for the keyboard fell off when I was "working" on it.) Called tech support back at 4:15 (they quit at 4:30) they told me it's my problem, they just handle my ISP's problems, not mine!

Took the DSL modem to my old machine, and it started working again, sort of. I have internet on one computer, a dead fancy machine, and the wife can't get her email.

Top that off mom brought over her sister who is in town visiting, after I told her I was to busy to come over there, now she's mad at me because I wouldn't drop everything to visit.

Tomorrow is another day, the designated day for our JOINT party, but if the snow keeps up we will have to cancel our trip too, it's a bit over a hundred miles to our son's house, and I won't chance driving that far on icy roads, even with four wheel drive. (Must be getting old, I once picked up my mom, my niece and drove them along with my wife and two screaming kids four hundred miles through a snow storm to see my sister who lived in Minnesota but I was only twenty two then and would live forever, that's back when I knew it all too.)

Must sleep, night all.

Write ON!

PS. TEEKAY So very glad your going to stick around! That's as far down as I read tonight, my eyes are blurry and the lids are drooping.

Jerry Ericsson 4-21-2002 1:23

I just noticed that Viv is going to Yap on her next vacation. Well, like the rest of us, she has been yapping in the NB for some time, now. It doesn’t sound like much of a vacation.


Nice trip to Sandwich, was it? I used to live in Sandwich. Forestdale, actually. It sounds like you had a good time. The Canal is not a good place to lose your son. Unless you want to lose your son. Our traffic rotarys are famous features. Most people from other states hate them.


Debra was not lost; she was down here on my turf for a while. Fascinating that we have someone so close to me and Teekay, who is a world away.


I am so glad to see you are still among us. You don’t have to write, Teekay. You can just come here and speak to us. It all counts the same.

gariess 4-21-2002 1:21

TEEKAY -- Glad to see you post.

HALLEE -- Life's a bitch, then you write about it.
(More elegantly expressed a few hundred years ago as, "Literature is emotion recollected in tranquility.") The emotion has made a visit, catch the tranquility and use it.

Mark 4-20-2002 23:49

Thanks guys:

I am all right, but I asked for General Anstishia and they opened the flood gates of medicine and I couldn't close my eyes. Weird huh? This is day two and still the swelling. I'm starting to worry I might be getting stretch marks on my face.

By the way, don't go to dental surgery wearing Fort Knox. I did and it was a real bitch getting those patch thingies on me. I had on a turtle neck body suit SNAPPED and a full shirt bra on. She figured out right away I might have been a little worried about Internet Dental Porn.


Debra 4-20-2002 22:38


I can't do HTML so imagine it as 72 font in red with party balloons and sparkles.
I know that if you keep at it, one day you're work is going to be on the bookshelves.

But if I were you I wouldn't listen to me, but other's think it too.

Teekay 4-20-2002 21:52


VIV: Vacation....vacation.... ye-e-es I do recall having seen that word in the dictionary some time ago, I must look it up and see what it means :-D

MARY: You taught me ALL the rude emoticons :-D

TINA: Honest, I wasn't bluffing, but after hearing from you lot and the support that's been given I've realised that you people mean a lot to me. Actually, I've always known this, but it was simply reaffirmed.

HALLEE: (((((((((((((((((HUGS)))))))))))))))) to you. Your divorce post knocked me for 6, so I can't imagine what it did to you on first finding out. Tried to email you, but couldn't get through.

HEATHER, RHODA, RACHEL, CHRISTI, MARY, HOWARD, JERRY, RANDALL, GARIESS: You guys are just so wonderful, you inspire me no end, with your talent and humour, your way of looking at the world, and especially for that cute little emoticon HOWARD :-D
And a special mention to JACK for without his efforts we would never have come to know each other.
(BTW: Whatever did happen to the workbook, maybe somehting was said about it, but I must have been away at the time.)
But that's just to name a few, every single one of you bring something to the notebook and I was an idiot to think I could go so easily and foolish for wanting to.

And now, a moments silence: (to fill the gap that is going to be there, because of what I deleted and which no one will ever know about and probably wouldn't care if they did.)
Aw, now I went and typed so much there's no gap left,
okay, don't worry about the minutes silence.
Back to it y'all.

Teekay 4-20-2002 21:45

Inspired by something in Goethe
Though I've been aware of this little epiphany for some time, I couldn't quite put words to it.

You there.
Yes. You've seen your children
And you've seen yourself.

You know the moment
I speak of. The moment
You knew your mother was standing there
Talking to your child. But it was you.

I've ridden the choppy waters of lovemaking,
And on the damp shore afterward
Known that those were the waters of my inception.

I talk to people. I listen.
I know them by their awareness of "The Parent Moment."

Those who are unaware
Are troubled.

Mark 4-20-2002 20:28


I'm glad to hear that you are well. I had the same big face thing going on a day or two after I had my wisdom teeth out. It wasn't very attractive on me... Know what? I was a little worried about you. I thought, if after all I said about it being fine it wasn't, well, I would feel like total crap.

Take care you.

Rachel 4-20-2002 19:49

Mary, nice bum! (_!_)
Teek, this moon's for you!

Okay, so you can't be bothered writing any more. I empathize. I know the novel back to front in my head, but putting it perfectly onto paper? Believe me, I wish there was an easier way.

My head's hurtin' alongside yours.

Suzy Homemaker probably batted me one while I was sleeping, and the 'Fred Flinstone' lump is just coming up now.

lopsided grins and all,

Heather 4-20-2002 18:50

oooops -- that was me...

BTW - RANDALL -- "beating down a brick loaf with a wall of bread" -- nice description! :-) I likes it! :-)

howard 4-20-2002 17:54

RANDALL -- Put yer hat back on -- that's not my graphic, someone sent it to me, and it's so easy to post that I'm ashamed to take credit for it. It is kinda cute, though.

TINA? -- yeah, those pages lead to some good tutorials, and you can learn a lot from them.

JENNY -- I guess we're veterans, okay, but I'm not sure it's writing that we're veterans at... we manage to have fun here, and I think we inspire one another at times, to greater heights, as we try to amuse/impress one another. The only problem is that some of us are more easily amuse/impressed, and the rest of us get big heads when they go Oooooohh! Ahhhhh! Actually, writing comes easier to some than to others. But that actually makes the "others" better writers, because they get more serious about it than the "some." And writing can be very serious stuff.

4-20-2002 17:44


Jenny, Hello!

Writing a novel is the easy part. I have a friend in town, who writes, is published, sold the movie rights to SS (he says) and once told me getting published was like beating down a brick wall with a wet loaf of bread. I agree. With the advent of word processing systems, persons who have no idea how to write (me), folks who don't know the difference between a paragraph (me) and a sentence (me) are pounding plastic keyboards (me)late into the night.....writing gibberish.

Jenny, after the writing is over, more than likely you've just gotten started. My current work has been finished for about five years now. But, the strangest thing happens, every, single, cotton picking time I pull up the file, a glaring error in the story leaps forward. I really believe my manuscript is of alien origin and developed a high degree of contrary, much like a horse trader's mule with a sore tooth! The text that sounded so smooth, so exciting, so sweet becomes rambling, the dreaded "info dump" total, freaking nonsense. I know when I wrote it, a Pulitzer was just over the horizon. Now it reads like installation instructions for a car stereo with only one speaker.

Of course this then requires rewriting, more spell check, more grammar check, more editing, change tense, (I've changed past to future to present tense so many times, it's a wonder a cosmic whirlpool in the space-time continuum hasn't opened up over my house) more dictionary time when the #&%$!@* thesaurus can't, or won't (spiteful program!) identify the one word that you have used 25 times in one page and you desperately need to find a substitute, (gasp) BTW long sentences are a no no as well!

A prominent author said once, that all of his works, aged like wine. When bottled, store in a cool, dry place for ten years. Then pull it out and take another look. I have three complete manuscripts, the start of a forth (combination of postings on here) on diskettes....aging. Time is meaningless in writing, unless a far away editor is directing your labors...and who needs that. Writing is freedom of expression. Yours.

But writing is fun. I'm enjoying writing this post. Some folks get high on jogging (too bouncy for me) exercising (too much labor) climbing mountains (too big a coward) robbing banks (not wishing to share a cell with some red-neck named Bubba Whomper.)

Seek publishers on the net. Random House/Del Rey have a site that is free for now. They are SF, SF/Fantasy and Horror oriented. You gain "points" for reviewing other writers manuscripts and in return are allowed to post yours...for review. Some writer submissions are laughable (mine) while others are very well done. Some reviews of my work were constructive, others, well quite cruel. After May, it becomes "member supported" which translate to 40 bucks a year subscription. There may be other sites, but beware of sharks. Writers tread surface waters but the ocean is deep and there are predators prowling.

Hope I helped!


Randall 4-20-2002 17:28


Hi Jenny! Sounds like you're in the same place as me. Ready to get on with publishing. Tidbits of help? Eeek. I haven't published a thing yet, but here's my 2 cents.
First thing; what do you write? Every little publishing niche seems different. Novels, magazines, short stories, screenplays... they all have a different route forward. Not to mention self-publishing and e-publishing. You will have to decide if you need an agent, or if you can submit your work yourself. A really good starting point is the 'Writer's Market 2002' (if you live in North America), which is brimming with info and the addresses of
publishers/agents. (If you're Canadian, there is a 'Canadian Writer's Market 2002 due out in June).
Good luck!

Teekay, I knew you were just faking us out about leaving. ;-) (((HUGS)))

Debra, Ahm gad yo shurgry wen ok. My jaw ha shympithy pain. (((HUGS))) for you too.

Howard, you had an earthquake? Glad all is okay. Kinda freaky though, aren't they? I've made a note of those links, for the next time I get ambitious about fixing up my home page.

Blue Skies!

Tina 4-20-2002 17:00



Okay Howard!!! How did you get my picture? And of all the gall, post it on the site!! Now everybody knows what I look like...on a good day...after a haircut...and bath, (no wait Saturday night is still ahead!)

Howard...my hats off to you...that graphic is fantas...fastan... fantskik...oh the hell with it!! Looks great!!!

Teekay, you can't leave this site. If you do, I'll have my friend Red Britches come and see you all the way DOWN THERE! He'll camp on your doorstep and attempt to blow WALTZING MATILDA on his trumpet. BTW...what kind of wine do you have down there? Red might find a real home if the "grape" is okay. BTW Since your all upside down, down there, will it flow out the top when the cork is jerked? :-)

Ah, yes, speaking of jerks I'd better go....


PS Anyone gonna watch Mummy 2, tonight? I'll try but I probably won't see much when Patricia Velazquez is in the scene... HOT MAMA!!!!!

Oh oh! here comes the wife! All that howling has alerted her!!

See ya!

Randall 4-20-2002 16:37

Hello all, I'm an ispiring author who is lost on how to continue. I'm almost finishe with the writing part, yet I haven't a clue on where to go now. I would beg, but I've too much pride. I would truely be appreciative if any of you might through a tid bit of advice my way. From reading the notebook I came to the conclusion that most of you are veteran writers. Thanks for any advice you give me.

Jenny 4-20-2002 15:22

What's going on with Teekay:

I have to lay down most of the day; I can't read all the posts.

Debra 4-20-2002 12:47


Teekay: Please do not leave... I don't want to be the only aussie in here:(

Taylor 4-20-2002 12:18


Teekay: Please do not leave... I don't want to be the only aussie in here:(

Taylor 4-20-2002 12:18


I'm here. I just got back from Cape Cod. I came back on Thursday and had the gum surgery on Friday. My mouth is swollen so big that I look like one of those goons from Popeye. Does anyone remember those goons that would appear for reasons I can't recall at this time?

Well that's what I look like.


I had the best time down there. I can't imagine living there year round. I visited my friend who lives in Sandwich. She has her own beach that's private just for the folks that live on her street and tennis courts to boot. I almost lost my son in the Cape Cod Canel. He's a live wire. But I have good reflexes and threatened to take his life myself if he ever pulled a stunt like that again. I took a picture of the Sagamore Bridge and irrated all the locals by slowing down on the rotarys. I didn't mean too. I was just thinking of that route the directions called for. I talked to a nice man from the Barnstable Police Department who gave me directions back to Route 6. I was heading to Boston when I was supposed to go West. I went to Mitchels gift shop, Privates' Cove, Yamouth House restaurant, the beaches just to look around and bunches of other places. Nice place the Cape. I also saw the Cape Cod Mall from the parking lot when I was waiting for my friend from Sandwich to meet me so I could follow her. Is it my imagaination or is the Barnes and Noble book store at the mall the most beautiful store in the world? I didn't get to go in but I'm going back in the fall to see if they want to carry my sweetie book. It's still at the printer so I wasn't ready this trip. I'm going back. It was a nice drive to the Cape I can make myself. I just love those two lane highways where every one goes 50mph. It's so civilized. The highways up here are scary central.

Debra 4-20-2002 12:16

bIg hugs too!

4-20-2002 11:52

TEEKAY! You better not leave! There is more than just one common thread holding us together! I taught you the butt emoticon! You have to stay. (_!_)

I will miss you terribly if you go, because I don't see you anywhere else! I understand your frustration, but it is temporary, please stay with us. You are valued here more than you realize. Bug hugs.

Mary 4-20-2002 11:51

MEL/MARK -- did you feel the earthquake this morning? We were just getting up at about 7:15, and felt the house shake. My brother was at his place on the St Lawrence, and he said the trailer shook real hard, and rattled dishes, etc, but no real damage. It's not a common thing in New York State.

howard 4-20-2002 11:49

VIV - that graphic is an animated gif file that someone sent me in an email weveral months ago. I enclosed it in an html image tag, and posted it that way. There's something happening with the script for the notebook that Jack has to override to make it actually work.
If you'll take a look at www.pagetutor.com you'll find some free html (and other web stuff) tutorials, as well as some free graphics to use on your own web page. There's also some stuff on www.boogiejack.com as well as some links to some good stuff on the home page for Jack's Webwitch site.
And there's a really good (free) html editor at www.fookes.com called NoteTab. You can get the lite version for free, and it's really all you need. It's also a great replacement for the Microsoft notepad.

howard 4-20-2002 11:40

Did it work? Nope! Something happens to the graphic and it disappears. Well, time for bed.

Carol, you ok?

Viv 4-20-2002 11:14

Rhoda, I don't own my house, I rent. I am sure that the owner of the home is happy. In a way I'm sort of happy. The people who are buying the house are very nice. I think that they will be happy here. I also know that I will find a new home. I was due for a change anyway (smiles). My grade will please me. Thanks for your kind words (hugs)!

Rachel 4-20-2002 11:02


Glad to see you around (smiles and hugs).

Rachel 4-20-2002 10:59

Debra, Are you out there?

Has anyone heard from Debra?

Rachel 4-20-2002 10:54

Rosemary and Jack: Amazing success on with your diets. Congratulations. You've inspired me and in turn I've inspired my husband. We walk 5 miles at night. Unfortunately, we come home and snack afterwards. Well, one thing at a time.

Rhoda: Could you tell me the title. I can order it online from Amazon.com and it will come in time for next vacation! (That's six months from now but our snail mail is just that!)

Howard: Cool Graphic! I'm completely amazed. Did that take HTML too? How'd you do that? Could I upload a graphic to a word page then copy and paste the whole thing here? Hummm, I could try that...

Jack: Hope I don't screw up your site but that would be something if I actually made it happen. I've got to try this out. Sorry. I can't wait like a sensible person for directions. I figure it's pretty safe because whatever goes wrong you could probably fix. I just wanted to warn you so you'd know what happened.

Viv 4-20-2002 10:48

Teekay: Nope, that's not wrong to say at all. No matter what you do, eventually you get tired of it. That's what vacations are for. Why not just take a vacation from the harder kind of writing and keep posting on the notebook. Don't feel bad at all, just describe where you are as you go on vacation. I personally think next time I need a vacation I'm going to Yap. Now that sounds like a great place for a writer to take a vacation. I like the sound of the name. Yap! Sounds kind of like the noise a spoiled lap dog might make. Make it a guilt free trip to never writing land. Try out your hand on something new...sky diving sounds nice. Climb up Ayers Rock? I've never been there but I want to.... Anyway, you have your own vacation places. Bet you pick a doozy!

Viv 4-20-2002 10:30


I have my muse tied to the chair
This to someone else may seem unfair
Who cares, my muse he can not go
He has to stay so my writing can flo

My muse is staying
Dont care if he cares to go
I have him locked up

Taylor 4-20-2002 3:59

gro-o--o-a-a-an............., oh my achin'........

Well you guys, I'm not going after all, because though my Muse is a fat, balding, pot-bellied deserter, he has a gilded tongue and when he utters those golden words, well, I just can't resist.

Thankyou all for your kind words and words of support and advice,
strangely though, the thing is, I don't want to write, I don't really care if I never write again.

You don't stone people for saying things like that here - do you?

I'm not really short on ideas, there are plenty of things I could write about, I just couldn't be bothered.

Now I feel like the big bad wolf unzipping his little sheeps costume........
..........da dum
..........da dum
........da dada da dum.
(wolf stripping music)

Anyway, it was a pretty good party,
-don't you think?


Now, where are my asprin.................

Teekay 4-20-2002 3:01


Congratulations on selling your house. That must be a great relief. Also I commend you on your grade for your course. I know it is very good.


I will check those mystery books out. They sound fun.

VIV and MEL,

I have a book of HTML. I must refer to it because I don't use HTML enough to do it without help. There are lots of good reference books. Doing fonts in HTML is easy if you follow the directions.

I am so sad. I got a new computer which I just love. The only problem is that I am having some problem with the sound card or the speakers and the thing must go back to SAM'S CLUB tomorrow. Of course I will exchange it for another one. I just don't relish taking the system apart and erasing all the things I have put on it in two days. When I play the DVD, I get sound, but no speech from any of the actors. I am too ignorant or lazy to figure it all out, so back to the store it goes.

Rhoda 4-20-2002 1:34


I hope you read this, because there is one rule in the NB that you apperently did not know about. It is the first rule of the NB. No one may ever say that they are not coming back. Okay, I just invented that rule, but you can't just leave. To think that you will never come back fills me with a sense of loss that I find simply... bad. Really... not good. I'll tell you what, if you come back, I will finish the story of the boy who couldn't be heard. I'll do it just for you.

gariess 4-19-2002 23:49


Teekay, are you out there?

howard 4-19-2002 21:16


It will be a little while till the exam results will be avaliable to us. I have a pretty good idea of what mark I'll end off with. It is a mark that I am pleased with. By the time I get the marks for this term I will have begun another course. I am again only taking one course. It will be Astronomy (sounded kind of fun and meets the requirements I need it to).

Happy days to you ;o)

Rachel 4-19-2002 18:45

Mel, You are so sweet (smiles).

Rachel 4-19-2002 18:35

Guys! My house is solid sold. The subjects have all been met. The bright and bold sold sign is now posted for all to see. Suddenly I feel a great deal of pressure to find a new home (GULP)! I packed up a few more boxes. That made me feel a little better. My poor husband is in shock. The walls are bare, the pretty little things that make a house a warm comfortable place have vanished. We have stark walls, bare counters and shelfs. Give me the weekend and goodness knows what else I'll vanish into these boxes. I'll certainly leave out the things we will need. It however is surprising how much stuff is in a house that isn't really needed, its just nice.

Rachel 4-19-2002 18:33


Jeepers, I just got down to Jack's post that he has lost 36 lbs. Between Jack, Rachel and I, we have lost a whole person. Wonder who it was??????

Also, JACK, great diving pictures. Makes me yearn for the coast. Maybe next weekend. This Sat. is probably the last meeting of my writing group. It had trickled down to about 5 members showing up regularly. Embarrassing when you have a speaker. Past membership has been as high as 75 writers. It makes a big difference when the president and board members aren't very interested in working on the group.

With this new super-fast internet connetion, we're going to expect double the amount of stories.

Was there a theme this week?? I have a short story based on the CASTAWAY ON A DESERT ISLAND concept. If others are interested, speak up. Maybe for next week.

Nothing like suggesting a theme to fit something you already have written.
Bye for today.

Rosemary again 4-19-2002 18:19

Greetings All,
So good to see you posting. I've really missed you.

Why don't you check and see if IMA would take over your postings for a while. Just to give you a breather (or time in virtual rehab). She was always good at livening things up around here.

A hoppy toady hi to you. Just got back from selling baby chicks and ducks to a pet shop. We're trying to keep the population down for a while. Feed bills for the birds are almost as bad as for the horses. Free eggs don't make up the difference.

I am currently going through a series of (cozy)mysteries set in Highland Scotland. The author is 'M.C. Beaton. There are two series, but the one set in Scotland is about Hamish MacBeth, each book titles all start with 'Death of a .....' Hamish is a unambitious bobby in a small village set on the edge of a loch. These books are small and easy reading, but I thought you might enjoy the background and settings.

Just the usual weather report. Here in South Central Texas the weather has settled down to a mild humid mid eighties. I've been learning the little quirks of a new lawnmower. It is two horsepower (6) stronger than the last one and never (so far) dies, no matter how thick and tall the weeds are. It is also heaver and harder to push.

It had double flaps on the ejection side that I wired up out of the way, and this strong motor throws grass and weed cuttings for miles. A lot of fun with the wind blowing. Most of the cuttings wound up all over me.

I realize the flaps were for personal protection and mulching, but I don't like the mulching properties. I get this icky green goo all over the place that dries into blobs of cement. When finished, I have to turn that monster-mower over and clean out the underside where all those clippings that couldn't get out, stuck to the undercarriage. Back breaking icky job.

My diet seems to have come to a screeching halt for the last couple of months or so. A loss of 37 lbs. My knees and hips are much better, but not completely yet. I'm also losing hair. Maybe my body thinks that if it sheds enough hair, I'll feed it. It may be right. Think I'll try to maintain for a couple of more months then try again. Could stand to lose another 40 pounds but don't think that will be realistic. I realize that to normal size persons, these amounts of pounds sound massive, (they really are) but you must remember that I am 5'10' and (cough)large boned.

I have this theory (some call it rationalization) that when people (me) let their weight get down too far, if they get sick, there's no back-up to keep you alive while you get well.

Oh well, sounds good to me.
Going for now. Haven't finished reading the posts, so don't depend on me not being back.

Rosemary 4-19-2002 17:32

Randall: Loved the story of your wedding. How long have you been married now? Although I'm not for big weddings and have given both my girls ladders so they can elope,
I have one point to make.

Big weddings are great for one thing: they are so complex and emotional, you'd never want to go through one again. Twenty two years later, my husband and I still look at each other and say, "Whoo, safer to stay married and avoid wedding crazed mothers-in-law."

Plus we got all these horrible gifts. Think about giving a glass bowl that looks like a chamber pot to a 19 year old. The bride looks at it and thinks....hummmm, that could be used to buy matching skateboards. Writing polite thank you notes for cut glass chamber pots was enough to do, the thought of the finicky wrapping process to send the damned things back was overwhelming.

As my husband and I left the church,he unbuttoned the pink ruffled shirt my mother had insisted he wear, and said,"Let's not do that again!"

What's awful is I have a 21 year old daughter. I hope her mother in law feels the same way I do. We'll hold the ladder as they climb down and cheer as they get in that car decorated with beer bottles and shaving cream.

Viv 4-19-2002 17:27

Rhoda: How'd you do that. That looks so cool! I'd love to try writing in red sometime. Neat computer work!

Teekay: Everybody's muse walks out on them at times. I think Heather has the best advice. I also think if you don't panic and realize that there is a natural ebb and flow to everything, you'll get through. Everyone gets depressed it is normal. Everyone who works feels uninspired sometimes. Just think of it as an ocean wave, stand still, and let it flow over you. Don't panic, you'll be back churning them out again. Your season is changing...it's fall. You are looking into winter, that's enough to make anyone feel gloomy. (Sorry, if I'm wrong. What I don't know about Australia could fill a book!) I think though that you go into winter as the rest of the world heads into summer. Anyway, you didn't mean that...you were virtually drunk when you said it. You'll be back because your fingers won't let you NOT WRITE.

Carol: Didya' get it? Have a great day and I'm looking forward to seeing what you get. It's funny how this stuff comes from the page.

Viv 4-19-2002 17:17

Rhoda: How'd you do that. That looks so cool! I'd love to try writing in red sometime. Neat computer work!

Teekay: Everybody's muse walks out on them at times. I think Heather has the best advice. I also think if you don't panic and realize that there is a natural ebb and flow to everything, you'll get through. Everyone gets depressed it is normal. Everyone who works feels uninspired sometimes. Just think of it as an ocean wave, stand st

Viv 4-19-2002 17:17

Hey, anyone interested in short stories? Would anyone like to read this one I just wrote and give me some feedback?? I'm desperate!


Corinna CORINNA'S PAGE 4-19-2002 15:07

RHODA, do you realize you and I posted THREE times AT THE SAME TIME in the space of 12 minutes???!!! I'm just amazed sometimes by useless trivia. ;-] Have a good day!

Mel, last time, for now 4-19-2002 14:58

I can't do the red big stuff (*pouty*wiping eyes with fists*) :-(

yeah it's Mel again 4-19-2002 14:31

Hi Rhoda! :-)


Mel agin agin 4-19-2002 14:29

I must try this again:

DO NOT GO !!!.

Rhoda 4-19-2002 14:29

HOWARD: I want to see LOTR:TTT... NOWWWWWWW!!!!!!! ;-] And BTW, I think dragging dogs, legs or no, is a "bummer" for the dog; at least, the dog seems to be the "butt-end" of the joke. (Seriously, I'd never drag a dog anywhere; but truly your joke was worse than mine!) 8-} Just kiddin' around...

Mel again 4-19-2002 14:25


Rhoda 4-19-2002 14:25

Perhaps, TEEKAY, I should convey the sentiments of my previous post another way:

SIZE="7" COLOR = "RED" DO NOT GO ! ! !

Rhoda 4-19-2002 14:24


Today, the last(?) of our warm sunny streak if JERRY's got snow... and just when I was about to put that snow shovel in the garage for the warmer seasons...

JERRY: KEEP the snow. I like the Spring colors better. :-) And I don't shovel well, heh heh.

HALLEE: more (((HUGS))) -- thinking of you...

RACHEL: some for you too (((HUGS))) just 'cuz you stole some. :-)

ELAINE: Disneyworld...hope to finally see it, maybe next Spring. :-)

TEEKAY: Don't let that bigheaded muse ditch you! Quick!! Pitch a lasso made of DUCT TAPE around his departing heels!!! Give yourself EXTRA SERVINGS of PATIENCE! If you must know, I probably haven't written the accumulated equivalent of a basic short story (what, ten or twenty pages?) in... lessee, counted all my fingers, toes...uh, someone pass their toes and fingers over here-- uh, yeah, right---in YEARS!!! My muse is too independently spirited; if I can't give her my UNDIVIDED ATTENTION at any given moment, she huffs off. Doesn't matter. I know how to call her back. :-)

Here's the secret--lean close--(*whispering loudly so all other blocked writers can hear*)-- Been reading great books lately? GIVE THEM UP. REPLACE THEM with the absolutely WORST books you've ever read...They'll draw the muse's attention back to you faster than you can say "Huh?" The muse will come STORMING home, FILLED with inspiration, and SHOUT IN YOUR EAR, "THIS BOOK SUCKS!!! I CAN WRITE BETTER THAN THAT!!! GET ME PAPER!!! GET ME A PEN--QUICK!!!!! I'LL show that #@$%^*$%$# so-called writer what REAL writing is..."

And you're off! :-) Good luck!!! And keep reporting back here so we know when to send more duct tape, etc. Just remember: Once a writer, ALWAYS A WRITER.

Happy writing thoughts to ALL!!! :-]

Mel 4-19-2002 14:17


A muse is a temperamental and finiky thing. Furthermore, the muse must serve us, not the other way around. If inspiration does not go out and grab you, then you must go out and grab it yourself.

If you want to write, you WILL be inspired to write. If your muse leaves and cannot be found, then get another one.

The best way to recapture the muse is to dust off those fingertips and write, and write and write, or type and type and type.

Please, do not go.

Rhoda 4-19-2002 14:17

Teekay - Don't know what to say. Unusual for me, I'll admit. I hate to see you go, as you have been such an inspiration to me, and I am sure many others here.

I feel like a child again, loosing my bestest friend because he had to move to Seattle.

Reconsider, just being here, visiting back an forth with the great writing minds that meet here every day will make you a writer again, of that I'm sure.

If you refuse, then farewell, take very good care of yourself, and please drop by from time to time and let us know how you are.

We'll miss you so very much.

Jerry 4-19-2002 13:33

Hello everyone!
I'm back in school today and I've just been shown pictures of Disney World by my friend(my, has it changed!) This is just a little ol' post from little ol' me! (WINKS)
Till Niagara Falls!

Elaine 4-19-2002 12:22

Ah Teekay, I may not always linger by thy side, but you have proven to me that I need not guide every word as it spills onto the page. You have your own unique voice and a unique view of the world, gifts I sometimes aid but never create.
Thy words will remain always a part of you, and though sometimes you may stumble over them, at other times you will run alongside, hard pressed to keep up. And even if you abandon them now, they will never abandon you. They will wait for a moment, the right moment to spill through you. Be patient, enjoy each day without worry, bask in the creativity of others and the love of fond friends.
I will always be near, ready to guide the force that already exists inside you. Never fear that I have left you, but I cannot destroy the wolves of self-doubt and self-criticism that live inside you. When I can, I will hold them at bay; otherwise I will wait for you to push away your demons. I will be here, because I have seen that which waits inside you, and it will be my honour to accompany you on that journey.
Your Muse, now and always.

Teekay's Muse 4-19-2002 12:06

In case anyone was wondering about that virus stopper tip I posted a few weeks ago, take a look at this -- just received from a friend I used to work with:
Hi -

Boy did you save me a lot of trouble. I took your advice and created a bogus address in my address book. Suddenly I was getting message after message about undeliverable mail - to 000@virus.stopper. It worked great. Took me about 5 hours to clean and fix my system though.

Thanks for the tip!

It works!

howard 4-19-2002 11:26


Morning all! After finishing up a proposal I worked on from 6:30 yesterday morning until 8:00 last night, I'll be leaving work for a day off!! It's going to be sunny and ninety degrees today. My brother is in Atlanta on vacation with his girlfriend, and the two of them are doing the 5-hour drive to come down and visit me this afternoon, then I have the beginning of a conference tonight that I helped put together. It's going to be a good day. (I was supposed to go this morning to file for divorce, but after a screaming match [the first one, I figure after 4 months this is our first fight - we're doing pretty good] with Conan last night and a long conversation this morning, we'll go together Monday to file to help expedite everything.

RHODA: Thanks for the welcome back. :) And good luck with your new project. I love Highland Scotland.

RACHEL: Thank you. :) And good luck on your exam! When do you get the score?

TEEKAY: You leave just as I return. *sniff*

Happy Friday all!

Hallee 4-19-2002 7:09

You just know there is one Muse kicking himself for being late to the party...

Teek, I truly wish you didn't feel that your inspiration will not return to you. It has never left you - rather, you have shut off the flow. I don't know how this happens, or why; all I know is that I've done it myself a thousand times. Mostly because I'm too busy worrying that I can't do what I set out to do, and then swatting away the Divine hand that feeds me all my words.
Feast, feast as you may upon language, for it is second best.
Read words that line up and dance to beat the drumming of your heart. Close your eyes, and there is nothing that cannot be imagined.
Inspiration will wait forever for you.

I think I might be able to pull of second best waiting time.

All my love to you, Teek, over time, across continents, and in the pages of my fondest dreams.

Heather 4-19-2002 4:54

And once again........
............the clinking of glasses............

******the popping of party poppers********************

~@#$!$@^%% and the raucous swearing from me as I fall down from the stage...............

Fade to Black.

4-19-2002 4:04

My Dearesht Friendsh *hic*

It is with rhuemy eyesh and heavy heart that I musht inform you that my time here ish at an end *hic*.

Shomebody once shaid that when one leavesh *hic* the notebook, they should jusht fade away into oblivion, until they become a faint memory.

Foolish, foolish wordsh.

My Frendsh, I cannot do that, for it would be a jolly good excoosh for a party down the drain *hic*, and beshides, I think too well of you all to do *hic* that.

The reashon for my departure ish that I have been abandoned. Left high and *hic* dry along the dushty literary highway, by a pot bellied mushe who left me in order to find himshelf *hic*.

I thought he might come back to me, but I thought wrong, he has found greener pashturesh or ended up mashed on a winshcreen like a bug in the night *hic*.

And sho, ash that common binding link that onshe bound ush together hash been shevered, I hereby bid ye farewell. You will remain in my thoughtsh with great *hic* fondnesh. Each one of you giving shomething of yourshelves and enriching my life, well, mosht of you anyway.

Now fill your glashes, no HOWARD, I mean the drinking onesh, and let ush toasht *hic* a toasht to Mushes. May you appreciate them always, and ne'er take them for granted.

Adieu my friendsh,
I've loved you well.

Teekay 4-19-2002 4:01

........Clinking of virtual glasses (the drinking kind)...........

****popping of party poppers******

............the raucous laughter of the virtually imebriated..........

and then.......

"Speech! Speech!"

4-19-2002 3:48


You are all invited to attend
the going away party for



WHAT SHALL I BRING? Just yourselves, but if you don't think that's sufficient cheques and money orders may be sent. Anyone requiring my address can refer to AMERICO.

WHAT SHALL I WEAR? What ever you feel most comfortable in.

WILL THERE BE SPEECHES? Well, just one, but don't let that scare you off. There will be free virual alcohol to numb the pain.

WILL IT BE BORING: That will depend on your state of enlightenment, or on how much virtual alcohol you have imbued (? - sorry, to lazy to look it up), but it should be no more boring than the dental posts. Or maybe just a tad moreso.
Okay, there will be free virtual anasthaesia as well.


Teekay 4-19-2002 3:44

Jingle Bells; Jingle Bells -- Winter has returned to the high plains, with nearly six inches of heavy wet snow backed by forty mile per hour winds brought back memories of Christmas, New Years, and aching backs from shoveling.

Hope it warms up tommorow so I don't have to blow this crap out of the drive way, and by Saturday so we can go north for our JOINT party.

Well must dash through the snow, catch you on the flip side.

write on

Jerry 4-18-2002 22:59



Weddings! Guess I should share mine with you guys. Contrary to what some of you might expect Debbie and I shared a small intimate wedding. That she poured a whole jug of water over me the night before as I lay sleeping in her grandmothers bed... And the day we were to be married, I had to plead with her to "Open the door and let me explain!" And the fact that I left for Utah the day after we were married are all easily understandable.

My life has always revolved around payday. This was no exception, we were married the day after payday. Which was my last day at work by the way. After work a few of my friends decided to give me a small going away party at nearby Riverside Park. A few beers and ... goodbye. Debbie and I were moving to Utah and establish a new life together, so a farewell party she understood.

No problem there. A few beers with the "boys" then Debbie and I would attend a STAR WARS movie, (the one in 1981) at 7 PM and have dinner with her grandmother and a few family friends around 10PM. A quite night. Marriage would follow and the next day I would depart for Utah to find a job, and apartment.

It was not my fault, and I have pointed out this for the last 22 years (sometimes on a weekly basis) that somehow the farewell memoriam turned into a raucous beer party and lasted a little longer than we planned. It seemed that every person that passed through the park had to stop and give Randall a farewell toast. It didn't help that Debbie and her grandmother came looking for me, after midnight, just as some ... totally unknown woman, in the headlights of several pickup trucks began to dance the hoochy kootchy atop a picnic table in Riverside Park! Right after that the police closed in, strobes flashing and busted everybody for public intoxication.

After explaining the situation most of us were released and I went to her grandmothers, where we were staying. I crashed in bed and just before I went to sleep (read, passed out!) I heard someone shout..."He's in here!" This sounded a lot like her grandmother. Debbie will freely admit that it was by her own hand that she was the one to pour a gallon bucket full of water on my head. "I'll wake up the no good bum!"

It didn't and I slept peacefully till morning.

Next morning Debbie was barricaded in an adjoining bedroom and refused to unlock the door. That is until I promised we could attend the afternoon matinee and meet her grandmother for lunch. We were married by a local JP, about 9:30 AM, that was attended by his two secretaries. I'll put our civil service wedding up against any 5,000 church marriage which lasts only a few years and ends in shouting, infidelity and acrimony. :-)

The next day I departed for Utah and 30 days later Debbie and Brandy joined me.

And that is a TRUE story friends.


Randall 4-18-2002 19:40

LOTR fans -- check http://www.thesun.co.uk/article/0,,5-2002170444,00.html for pictures from the next movie "The Two Towers"

Also, here's an excerpt from an article about an extra in the movie:

Three seconds was all it took for Wellington actor Bret McKenzie to get more than his 15 minutes of fame.

His brief appearance as an elf in The Lord of the Rings: The Fellowship of the Ring has earned the 25-year-old a huge and unusual following on a website dedicated to his character.

Figwit, a name bestowed on him by fans meaning “Frodo is great… Who is THAT?”, featured in about three seconds of the 3-hour film. He had no lines, not even a close-up, and would have gone by unnoticed but for a group of die-hard fans who took a fancy to his preened hair, plucked eyebrows and pouty mouth.

“It’s hilarious,” McKenzie said.
You can see the whole article at www.imladris.net -- click on "Figwit lives!"

howard Link 4-18-2002 18:43

JACK -- Awesome diving videos! It looks like you're having fun doing that! I wish my lungs would allow that -- it really looks like a great time! Now I've gotta figure out how to do the video thing for my web page class assignment. Mind if I look at your source for inspiration?

MEL - what do you call a dog with no legs??? We named ours "Cigarette," and every night I had to take him out for a drag...

howard 4-18-2002 17:08

Rachel, sounds like your wedding was a hit! Lots of fun.

When I married Troy, we did an out-in-the-country wedding of 100 guests. It was purposefully very basic and relaxed. We found a community hall along a beautiful river, where we did the ceremony, luncheon, gifts, dinner and dance. (We had so many guests coming from other provinces that we decided to make it a full day.) I arrived 40 minutes late (the hairdressers fault), the DJ lost the wedding march music (we used a Zamfir song instead and it was perfect) and some guests were bug bitten beyond belief! But the weather was perfect, the guests behaved themselves, and our cake was scrumptious and beautiful. One of the best parts of the day was my dance with my dad. I found the music for the lullaby he used to sing to me as a wee kiddo, and I made my daddy cry a bit.

My girlfriend's wedding will be entirely different. Formal, 75 guests, sit-down dinner, church wedding. I'm so excited, and it's not until September.

Howard, your niece's wedding sounds lovely. And Randall, I don't think my life will be complete until I experience a proper Texas wedding! BBQ! Yahoo!

back on my head...

Tina 4-18-2002 16:24

Hallee: I wish you the very best with the new beginning.

Mel: (((hugs))) back to you. I took those extra hugs (big smiles).

Howard: I’ve been to Boldt Castle. I found it sort of sad. I am sure that on your nieces special day that it will shimmer with the love that you and your family will bring.

Heather: Editing a big project is a lot of work. I send you hugs and much encouragement. Know that when you are done I will be appreciating the time and effort you put into it. I don’t care if you use my story or not. I’ll still appreciate what you’ve done. I think it is great that you are taking the task on. You will not believe how much you learn along the way. Hope the headaches go away.


Dan and I were the first out of our friends to get married. I was twenty and he was twenty-two. It was a wild party. The cake sort of got lost in the fray (grins). It was really hot and it sort of melted all over the place (laughter - yes we had the eat me kind of cake, no fake cake here). The caterer had left by the time we thought about the cake. We ended up doing the ceremonial cut thing, then let people help themselves. You needed to use napkins and your fingers (quite the mess). Later in the evening my sister-in-law sat on the cake and put the cake top decoration on her head... By the time all of that was going on Dan and I were long gone. We had set it up so that none of our friends would need to drive. We knew that every one of them would be pissed to the teeth. We did our reception out at this old hall. It was really a cute place. We had a friend who had a farm down the way. After the night of drinking my friends, in all their fine cloths all staggered and stumbled over the fields. I understand that they pushed over a few cows (or something like that), then they were put up in a lofty part of some barn. Lots of blanks, pillows and the like. As for the bar, we covered the costs for beer, wine and punch. We had nonalcoholic options and told people to feel free to bring anything extra they might want. We bought a lot of beer and wine. Before the night was over our friends made a run to the store and had to get more. I look back and that and think WOW... I don’t think that there are any set rules for it you will pay for drinks or not. I always assume that drinks will not be covered at a wedding. Most people I know have small weddings. I’ve been to the big and small sort. I think the small ones are so nice. It was all that my husband and I really wanted. At our wedding I walked around and greeted each of the guests (there were lots). I didn’t give out anything at my wedding. I gave out smiles and lots of them. I sent out thank you cards. I guess we had to try to keep it simple as my husband and I were paying for the wedding ourselves. I remember being so freaked out about how much money it all would cost. My husband and I had no idea how we were going to come up with the money to pay for it. We took a shot in the dark on a stock tip and made enough money to pay for the wedding. Talk about luck! I have to say that I liked my wedding. I however would not do it again. If I had to go back I would elope.

Jack: Way to go with the weight loss. I know how hard that can be. I used to weigh in a 250. Maybe even a little more. That was the last time I got on a scale before I started my weight loss. How about that? I know I’m tall, but I’m not that tall (grins). By the time I’m done with my weight loss I will have taken off 95lbs. That is no small deal. I expect to meet my goal by the end of the summer. By the time all is said and done it will have taken me four years to do it. Yikes! That sounds like such a long time. I did however have a baby during that time. That can tend to put a crimp in weight loss (laughter). What I’m saying is that I think it is great that you are taking care of yourself (hugs). I guess I also wanted to jump up and down and say, look at me, look at me (winks).

Litter: My heart goes out to your wife. I am sure it must be hard for you as well. It is painful to see those that we love suffer. It is difficult to know what to do, how best to support them, if they want support, or if they just want to be left alone (argh)! I am sure that you will know exactly what to do (hugs). There is nothing boring about what you wrote. You are speaking of matters of the heart. Please don’t ever feel you would bore me.

Hallee: Congrats on the contests! All is going well enough with me. I wrote my first exam in 15 years last night. Yikes! I am told by the people in my class that it was very difficult. All I know is that my brain shut off when I turned the exam paper over. At first I couldn't even see it (selective/hystarical blindness - grins)! Once I could see the stuff in front of me, breath and was pretty sure I wasn't going to start scream or laughing I was ready to get started. Then I had to deal with the fact that every thing I knew seemed to have completely gone out of my head. It sort of came back. I will be interested to see how I do ;o)

Christi - Have a great vacation!

Howard - Love the picture!

Rhoda - It has been too long (smiles and hugs). I also have not found a house. As I write this post I have a housing inspector who is wandering around. If he likes what he sees then my house will be sold by this evening. Argh! The sale is pending this inspection. At that point I have two months from the last day of this month before we have to move. I hope that you will find the right house. I am sure that you will. I hope that you sort out the schools. I know how important a school is to my husband and I when we are looking for a home. You look at houses and areas a lot differently when you have children. I think it would be great to live in Louisiana. I am sure that the area would take my breath away. My grandmother is from Louisiana. She seems to think that it is a fine place (smiles). I hope that the writing goes well for you. I know what you are saying about getting back into the NB after being away for a time. I don’t always catch up on old posts. You are awesome to have done so! The perspective owner joined the inspector. I think that they are going to take the house. Ah well, I guess it is okay. They fellow and his wife who are looking at the place are really nice. I bet they will be very happy here.

Rachel 4-18-2002 15:31

(groaning at Mel's jokes...)

What do you call an empty jar of Cheese Whiz? (Cheese was!)

What do you call a meteorite that misses the Earth? (A meteorwrong)

(Mel! they're throwing fruit at me too! ;-D)

Sarah, what do you like to write?

Tina 4-18-2002 14:43

a couple more last words...

RHODA: Your historical romance sounds intriguing! And I don't always go for the historical stuff, but who can resist the Highlands? :-) Good luck with it...

TAYLOR: How do you "break out" of your head? I would like to try that some time. :-)

Am truly going now (but I'll be back...is that a threat or a promise? You decide... only my muse knows for sure, ha!)

Mel 4-18-2002 14:22


Well, goodness me gracious sakes land o' the livin'! Looks like I started a hug-fest! hee hee hee 8-]

Just remember - hugs are tax-free and fully returnable!

ELAINE: (((more HUGS with CHICKEN SOUP in them! squishy but healthy! )))

I'm silly today, I've decided. Did anyone notice??? It all started with hanging around the library entrance this morning waiting for SOMEBODY with the security code to come let us all in...45 minutes later...! Who cares! The weather is gorgeous again today! :-) Then we started telling stupid jokes, like...

what do you call a cow with no legs??? (ground beef)


what do you call a dog with no legs??? (DON'T call him - he won't come.)

heh heh

oh, get me outta here before you waste all that rotten fruit on me! WHOOSH! Someone missed! hee hee! But I'm going now anyway! 8-] 'byeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeee!!!

Mel 4-18-2002 14:15


Welcome back! It was so good to see your post after too long. And congratulations on you short story winnings. It is exciting to have you back.


Welcome to the group.


After discovering that my two previous projects were not technically romances and had the deck stacked against them because of their inability to fit into any catagory, I have set about creating something that will fit more into the traditional historical romance mode. I have also set out not to do another 500 plus page novel. Hopefully this one will settle down into 100,000 words or 400 pages. It takes place in Highland Scotland and involves the Highland Clearances where thousands of displaced people were thrown out of their homes to make way for sheep. Many of these Highlanders had to go to the cities or to Canada.

Rhoda 4-18-2002 14:01

RACHEL!!! Hi, hon! (((hugs))) How is everything?

MEL! ((hug)) It's nice to see your happy posts still. You make the days brighter.

Hiya TAYLOR. Good to see you still around.

ELAINE: Nice to meet you. (smile)

Hallee 4-18-2002 13:22

Hi guys! I have to keep this short so WELCOME HALLEE!! Glad to see you. SARAH, did you get enough good opinions? MEL, Thank you for the hugs, I needed it today. Just a little note, I'm sick today, so I stayed home from school. Was in the bathroom last night but I don't think you want to know what I did in there...so I'll stop with that. I can't remember who gave me the piece of advice about my parents and their veiw about writing but thanks anyway! Well I would like to go back to bed or maybe have some Ramen Noodles so.... (((HUGS))) to anyone who needs them!
Till Niagara Falls!

Elaine 4-18-2002 12:55

I mean HALLEEEEEEEEEEE! (laughter and hugs) Sorry about the spelling your name wrong. Gezz, what a way to say welcome back (grins).

Rachel 4-18-2002 11:12

Haleeeeeeeeee! (smiles and hugs).

Rachel 4-18-2002 11:11


Hugs back to ya Mel.

Nice diving pic Jack

Welcome Back Hallee.

I think I might definately go and take a break for awhile, definately get out of my head for awhile.

Taylor 4-18-2002 9:58


Okay, line yourselves up:

HALLEE: (((HUGS))) Welcome back to the NB and to a new life for yourself. CONGRATS on the story winners - yeeha!!! :-)

HEATHER: (((HUGS))) Welcome back to you and hope your "break" refreshed you. Now there's more writing to be done! :-) Make some time for your own stories to hit the paper too.

LITTER: (((HUGS))) Hang in there --- sometimes the hard times keep rolling you downhill, but there's a kick-'em-off point just around the next bend. :-) May life be kinder to you soon!

RANDALL: (((HUGS))) for Dale. That was a nice (and entertaining!) tribute you wrote for your friend. I also enjoyed hearing about a Texas wedding...We Easterners are a bit more prim in such events (until you catch us tying tin cans and old shoes onto the back of the getaway car and spraying whipped cream faces on the windshield so everyone knows which is the bride and which is the groom, as if no one could tell...!).

EDDIE: (((HUGS))) for the end of LAUGHSEND - I enjoyed your DEFRA farewell bit - too bad I didn't catch LAUGHSEND before it folded. At least we still have your talented wit here. :-)

HOWARD: (((HUGS))) Who couldn't hug a cute hairy smiler like that? :-)

JACK: (((HUGS))) I DO enjoy your diving clips!!! They make me wish I was a diver but give me something better: an armchair trip underwater, with music too! You go, boy!!! Best of luck in making future clips...and with the excellent diet success!!! :-)

RHODA: (((HUGS))) You'll find a great home soon, I believe it! Meanwhile, thanks for the great visuals of cypress trees and Spanish moss - Louisiana is a place I may never get to visit but it sounds lovely (Except for the alligators, of course!). :-) What are you writing these days? My romance-writing seems to always take bit parts in my sf&f plots...one of these days I'll concentrate on writing a real romance novel...maybe! HA! Where's the time?!!

SARAH: (((HUGS))) and welcome to the NB! Hang in there with your writing - families, as a rule, I think, won't believe you're a writer until they see your successes in print. So work at it and one day you'll show them something they didn't know about you! Perseverence!!! :-)

TINA: (((HUGS))) for being you! :-) I have two nephews' weddings this year, one in May, one in September...both will be, I expect, generally traditional affairs for Easterners (Not TEXAN by any means!), most likely buffet dinners followed by cake (just the real thing), maybe some dancing inbetween the main dinner and the dessert, lots of laughing and storytelling of when the boys were little, etc., maybe some little candy favors on the tables; if there's a band (usual these days) there might be a dollar-dance with the bride and groom, and don't forget the clanking of silverware on wine/water glasses to make the bride and groom kiss each other in front of everyone as often as possible to the extreme point of becoming an obnoxious tradition (hmm, that sounds a little Texan, doesn't it? :-D All in fun, RANDALL!). On and on... happy wedding day to your friend!!!

To all of you who wrote about birds in your backyards: (((((HUGS))))) THAT was a lovely post-reading!!! I hope you who have birdfeeders and mountains with eagles soaring write this stuff in your stories - it's a refreshing read for country-bumpkins like me who have lived in Suburbia for so long that one forgets what all those lovely birds look like! Oh, I can hear them every morning (yes, RACHEL, a JOYOUS NOISE when they all wake up singing!) but rarely see them - too many houses, cars, and other pieces of civilization in the way! So keep writing, you nature lovers - I love to read all about it! :-)

I better get back to my work-desk, sigh. It's been great hanging out here with you-all for a few minutes - have a GREAT DAY, everyone!!!

And to anyone who needs a hug and didnt get one: (((((HUGS))))) :-) :-) :-)

Mel 4-18-2002 9:42


TINA: Thanks for the welcome back. ((hugs)) Weddings? Every wedding I have been to has been completely different. At mine, we had a buffet luncheon, so the cake was cut early for those who didn't eat. Other than that, it just depends on the wedding, I suppose. I've never heard of a fake cake, but I've seen some totally fantastic real ones that looked fake. Also, sit down compared to buffet dinner would depend upon the budget, usually. It's more expensive to do sit down.

Heather: Hi hon. ((hug)) About Phantasum - where is the work book? I went to search it out yesterday and couldn't find it. Also - send some of the stories my way if you want to cut the editing pile down. I've been doing a lot of editing for people lately, and have become quite skilled at it. I've learned a lot just from critique groups.

Howard: Thank you.

OKay - break is over. Back to work. Have a great day all!

Hallee 4-18-2002 7:24

Was wondering if anybody took a look at the diving videos - http://www.fenwithfins.org/divingvideos.html

The diver above, BTW, is Fran. Oh, and as I think I mentioned, I am taking an underwater videography course and already am cringing a bit at some of the footage available above.

Jack 4-18-2002 2:05

Got a new ISP now with the DSL so my email has changed, I have the correct one below with my name.

Heather, I was beginning to think my Right Guard wasn't doing it's job or something, what with you being gone for so long. Sure glad to see you back amongst us.

Don't know much about weddings, so I'll keep my two bits out on that one, when I wed my wife, it was a quiet little church ceremony with just immediate family, and attendants.

Our son's two were simple civil ceremonies, now when my favorite niece wed, and I gave here away, that was a fancy full fledged wedding with gifts, food, dancing and the works, but to tell the truth, I didn't pay much attention.

Mom's wedding (her second of course) was a quiet little thing in my living room, just family and the preacher.

Guess as a family we like to keep our weddings simple, and I think there is a lot to be said for it, seems our marriages last and last, usually till death, like the promises we make to each other.

Time for bed, never did get that story out of my head and onto the page, but it's still there fermenting, too busy today with the second visit of the ISP to make sure things were right, and switch the connection to my regular phone line, then exploring the web at high speed, I do love it.

Write ON!

Jerry 4-18-2002 1:30

And JACK -- thanks for fixing that link! I appreciate it.

howard 4-17-2002 21:40

HALLEE! We missed you too - welcome back! I am sorry to hear of your troubles -- never went through that, but I know it's traumatic for all involved, especially the kids.

TINA -- our niece is getting married in July, and it's gonna be a real lollapalooza! The wedding will be in Boldt Castle, on Heart Island in the St Lawrence River (1000 Islands). The hors d'oeuvre reception will be held at the Thousand Islands Golf Club on Wellsley Island, and the cake will be a "creampuff cake" -- I can't think of the real (French) name for it -- it's a cake built up of small, filled creampuffs, stacked in layers, held together by a rich syrup glaze(laced with amaretto, I think) and decorated with sugar crystal sculptures. The whole thing is about three feet high. We're not worrying about when it's to be served. I don't even want to think how expensive this bash will be, but they've been saving for several years for it.
Maybe I'll take my fishing pole, and do some trolling from the ferry boat on the way out to the island! :-)

howard 4-17-2002 21:39



Oh Tina girl! Thank you for giving me an opening! :-) You're still not upset over that Tina/German Shepard story I did last winter are you? I was scared to open any manila envelope for several months after that tail.


Well good! :-))))))))))))))))))))))

On the wedding discussion thingieeeeee.

"Should the wedding cake be dessert after dinner, or served later in the evening?"

Well, in my little Texas mind, that depends on whether the Bar-B-Que is outdoor or inside. Whether you're cooking a pig in the ground or a cow above ground. If outdoors, just sit it out ASAP and see what develops. (Best away from the fire pit and/or bar and band) For control purposes on the cake you might consider omitting plates and spoons at first. This will negate any attempt for an early "chow down" on the cake. Except for the die hard's anyway. Forks? No, oh no! Cake may only be appreciated when eaten with a spoon. Allows the under achievers less time to gulp down more, quicker and with less effort. I recommend the "soup" style metal spoon and LARGE, substantial plates, capable of handling a real load. After a wedding most men are really hungry. (And before, and during and afterward!) Stands to reason as most males are attending for free food only.

If the Bar-B-Que is inside? Of no relevance whatsoever.

"How many of you get a fake but very fancy cake, instead of an edible yummy one?"

This should probably be referenced above, If there is no free cake, what the heck are a bunch of guys doing there anyway? Unless there is free beer! I suppose this might fall under the rule of, "If your drunk and HUNGRY anything that looks like food will be devoured eventually and with gusto."

"Which kind of bar is the most common: Open, free, or two dollar/drink?"

Well, I'll tell you one thing real quick. Try charging for booze at a wedding around here and someone will not have a good ceremony.

"Hey Elmo! Man, that guy at the bar told me the beer was a buck a bottle!"


"Yeah, a buck a beer. Does George know about this?"


It's best to avoid embarrassing the bride's family and friends. They're probably uneasy anyway, what with the horses tied to the limos...so free beer.

Most grooms need a stiff shot before and after the event anyway. It's not relevant that he drank enough at the bachelor party the night before to float a battleship... His friends will need an eye-opener at dawn, a midmorning pick me up, a cold one at lunch, perhaps a small shot during the ceremony and a big blow out after the deed is done!

"How is dinner/lunch usually served, sit-down served, or banquet? "

Is this a trick question? Food is food, whether eaten standing up, or sitting down, or laying down. The only law I've ever heard of regulating chow time at a marriage...before or after... no loud growling and only one foot at a time on the table. Just sit out the grub and step back. Way back! BTW, if a friend is working on a thesis for a PH.D.? You might ask them to video tape the melee. Darwin's evolutionary laws are freely visible during these times.

"Do you hand out 'favours'? What kind? (ie candy, wrapped cake, small gift)"

Of course. Good etiquette is always appreciated. Gallon buckets for left over food. Have a supply of doggie bags for left over cake. Boozer bags for left over beer. Small aspirin in a baggie with a cute bow if you must. Pepto Bismo by the quart might be thoughtful. ("Who in the hell made that F*&#@$% cake!")

Best if bridesmaids do the handing out though. I'm sure the groom doesn't want his new bride giving anything away! Ignore the favors if the bride is present, giggling hysterically and trying to conceal a shotgun behind a cake and beer splattered wedding dress.

Weddings, you gotta love ‘em

Thank you dear Tina for the idea. Bless you and I hope your friends wedding...well, works out!


Randall 4-17-2002 21:24

I was so excited to see Hallee back that I posted twice...

Okay, so it just sounded good.


Heather 4-17-2002 20:34

Hallee! Welcome back!
Sorry to hear about all the trouble you've had over the last 8 months - but glad that you're happy, and that everything's worked out. It's hard to readjust, even if things are amicable throughout. It is still a change.
((((HUGS)))))! And Congratulations on winning two placements for short stories in those contests!

I haven't forgotten the Phantasium Project, everyone - it is on hold for about one more week. I'm getting headaches just contemplating any editing tasks right now. For Pete's sake, I don't even want to go near changing font colours, even!
But I shall return full force, after my recent hiatus, as it was very much needed.
And, I've been spending my creative juices in a different form, which undoubtedly always renews the wellspring for my writing.
It's been a while since I took a month off to just do something else!!!
My husband is making remarks about creative juices, as he snoop-reads over my shoulder - naughty naughty!

Heather 4-17-2002 20:33

Hallee! Welcome back!
Sorry to hear about all the trouble you've had over the last 8 months - but glad that you're happy, and that everything's worked out. It's hard to readjust, even if things are amicable throughout. It is still a change.
((((HUGS)))))! And Congratulations on winning two placements for short stories in those contests!

I haven't forgotten the Phantasium Project, everyone - it is on hold for about one more week. I'm getting headaches just contemplating any editing tasks right now. For Pete's sake, I don't even want to go near changing font colours, even!
But I shall return full force, after my recent hiatus, as it was very much needed.
And, I've been spending my creative juices in a different form, which undoubtedly always renews the wellspring for my writing.
It's been a while since I took a month off to just do something else!!!
My husband is making remarks about creative juices, as he snoop-reads over my shoulder - naughty naughty!

Heather 4-17-2002 20:32

HALLEE!!!! Hi you! Glad to see your name pop up here! Congrats on winning the contest! See ya around!

(((HUGS))) to you Litter. Be there, be supportive, and let her cry when she needs to. So glad that your wife was able to see him one last time.

Jack, I don't think anyone minds you removing spam/drivel. I'm actually often surprised that more of it doesn't find it's way in here. (touching wood...)

Rhoda... Be Picky! If you have the option, and if you don't want to move again and again, be picky. I can't remember, are you buying or renting?

Christi, have fun!

Here's 'US Trivia' question for you USians. My girlfriend is marrying an American, and in the ongoing wedding discussions, we found a few fun differences in traditions. So...
Should the wedding cake be dessert after dinner, or served later in the evening?
How many of you get a fake but very fancy cake, instead of an edible nummy one?
Which kind of bar is the most common: Open, free, or two dollar/drink?
How is dinner/lunch usually served, sit-down served, or banquet?
Do you hand out 'favours'? What kind? (ie candy, wrapped cake, small gift)

Okay, I'll stop. It's just been fun to see the differences.

Blue Skies!

Tina 4-17-2002 17:26

Howard: I took care of the broken link to the graphics. Just so everyone knows, the way that tdforum works is that it is comfortable with turning a URL into an actual link, but has problems with turning a graphic into a link. If you want to link to a graphic, go ahead and I will correct the code after the fact. Take care everyone. Oh, was wondering if anyone took a look at the diving videos. At any rate, hope everyone is having a great time. Hoping to go diving tomorrow and get some more underwater video and also I have lost a total of 36 pounds so far. Hopefully I will keep it up and lose the rest of the weight I hope to lose.

Also, wanted to remind everyone that anyone is the Pacific Northwest Region ala Seattle is heartily invited to come and join in Fran and mine's Anime Social. Details can be found in the link below.

Jack Jack and Fran's Anime Social 4-17-2002 17:07

Hi All,

Seems that my life just now is just lunging from on crisis to another. They latest, and most serious, was that my Father-in Law died about a week ago. He lives in Spain but my wife managed to get to his bedside a couple of days before he breathed his last. She was able to be with him when he finally succumbed. Unfortunately she was not afforded much time with him as her mother took her, from her father, to start a new life with her step-father who died about four years ago – so now she has to cope with the deaths of 2 fathers. She found him again only 6 years ago. He was living only 400 miles away in London where he had lived for 6 months of every year, leaving for Spain for the other 6 months when the weather got colder. She cannot remember much about him prior to 6 years ago.

I’ll not bore you all with the remainder of my recent woes, but I may bee somewhat distracted for a while.

MARY – what do you think of “Who left Grandad…” My favourite is “What is the point of a Goldfish.


Litter 4-17-2002 16:35


Hey everyone!

Wow – it’s been a while. Eight or nine months, easy. So many things have happened since then. Let me see…I’m getting divorced. Conan told me about his affair with my best friend the first weekend of December. I moved out two weeks later. They’re living together now. She’s pregnant and on bed rest. I’m doing fantastic. I never knew I wasn’t happy until suddenly I was happy. It was an incredible revelation. Since then, I’ve met the most fantastic guy. We’ve been seeing each other very seriously since about January. He’s a writer, a computer consultant, and in the National Guard (Special Forces). Unfortunately, that means that he’s also being activated and deployed, so I suddenly find myself with an excess of time on my hands.

I haven’t really written anything novel-wise since I left Conan. There’s been no real great drive to do so. However, I’ve written two short stories for two contests. I won second place in one and first place in the other. I just found out about that one yesterday.

What else? Oh – Kaylee just turned 5. My little baby is getting registered for school next month. *sniff* Where does the time go? She’s handled this extremely well. It helps that there is no animosity between her father and I. Once the shock of it all wore off, the first emotion I felt was relief at being able to get out of the marriage, so I have yet to even be really upset about the whole thing. We don’t fight – it’s all extremely amicable and friendly. I’m certain that’s helped Kaylee adjust.

I don’t think I have any more news. Work is extremely busy, but it’s always been so. I’m about to leave the office after an almost 11-hour day. But, it’s going well, and I love my job. This is one of the reasons I’ll remain in Florida despite the fact that none of my family is here.

It’s good to post again. I see from my quick skim that there are a lot of old faces still here. It’s nice to see some things don’t change.

Hallee Hallee 4-17-2002 16:19

OH NO! That looks like I'm saying NO LOVE to TEEKAY, and what I meant was she's not having Spring right now! I think you're in Fall right now, right? HEE! Sorry, girlie. You know I love you. That's what I get for rushing.
(PS: Now you have to answer, as it would be unbearably rude for you to ignore a post directed to you. HEE!)

Christi 4-17-2002 16:15

Oh yes, and Roger says goodbye as well, with an extra kiss for all the girls. What a perv.

Christi 4-17-2002 16:09


HIYA, HEATHER, and welcome back!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
Hi right back to ya, RACHEL! :D
And welcome to ELAINE and SARAH.

Well all, I'm off on a vacation starting bright and early tomorrow. (Getting up at 4:00 in the morning, other wise known to my eastern friends as 'dark-thirty, hahaha!) I'm goin to Boise to see my sis and her hubby for almost a whole week. Yeeeeeehaw!
Please, don't anyone get all depressed just coz I'm leaving. Keep the Notebook going on, despite the utter lack of Christiness. *sob!* Just try to keep smiling through the tears. HAHAHA! I couldn't keep a straight face on that'un.

Love to all and to all (except for Teekay for obvious reasons) a delightful spring,

Christi 4-17-2002 16:07

O well... :-(

howard 4-17-2002 15:36

Try again - last time - sorry for the heartburn, Jack...

howard 4-17-2002 15:36

Didn't work! nutz!

howard 4-17-2002 15:30

SARAH/ELAINE -- Perhaps your parents' objections were over the thought that you planned to step into a well-paid writer's career without thought of any other career or backup to start with. And that's understandable. About the only way to do that is to graduate in the top few percent of your class at a prestigious school of journalism, and it takes mucho work and luck to do that.

If you look around, you'll see that most successful writers did start with something else, and worked on their writing on the side. It's not easy -- it takes the right combination and amounts of study/writing/research/writing/reading/writing/persistance/writing/submitting/writing/discipline/writing/practice/writing/curtailing-family-activities-sports-entertainment-concerts-movies/writing/more writing, and just plain writing along with working a job or jobs that will support you.

Lest I scare you off, I haven't heard of anyone dying from writing, except maybe for Robert E Howard (creator of Conan the barbarian), and he just went off the deep end from stress, they think, and did himself in.

Welcome to the club!

(supposed to be my new smiley face below)

howard 4-17-2002 15:29

Welcome SARAH! Just a little thought to your dilema...I write for the joy of writing, one day I would like to get published too, but I'm still young and I have time to grow in my techniches and styles. Give yourself time to grow in your own unique way of writing. When my parents found out that I wanted to be a writer when I grew up...they blew their tops! They knew the risks of trying to become a published writer...they just don't think it's practical. (they shouldn't talk because they're both teachers!) Now that I'm older, I understand the risks too, but I don't care, I want to write and I'm GOING to write, and if it takes forever to publish my stuff, even if I NEVER publish my stuff, I'm still going to write. Don't give in to your parents when they say it's not practical or it's impossible. It is possible, just look at the other published writers out there! They started out the exact same way that we, poor, anoymous writers start out as!
Hope these are encouraging words, and I didn't know that my post on KFDS was going to bring out such a response! SMILES! I hope you all had a good laugh when you read it!
Till Niagara Falls!

Elaine 4-17-2002 10:52

Shortie theme this week? I missed it, if it was posted. I's sorry.

Sarah - Well, I would submit some of your work to a writer's magazine or something like that and see if they publish it. And never give up! Have confidence in yourself and you will make it.

Allein Peachick's Gallery 4-17-2002 1:57

Sorry about using the cuss word IR* :-) . Also, wanted to note that there is now a domain for Fen With Fins . After having enough eyes hit the page to shove it over 1.08 gigs from 50 megs in one day, I got a bit scared. If people are interested check out http://www.fenwithfins.org/divingvideos.html Got some interesting stuff from some of my northwest dives. Hopefully after I finish my videography class in another two months, I will be able to do even better clips.

Welcome. Glad to see you back and will look forward to your accounts of Cajun country. I certainly like the food...

Jack Fen With Fins 4-17-2002 1:20

Had DSL installed today. I am the first in town to get the new phone company DSL. The reason? Simple, I was the only one who signed up who had a second phone line dedicated to internet, and the guy who sat it up (first time for him too) figured with an extra phone line, he could call for help if he needed it. (HE DID).

It took over four hours for him to get it installed, but the special was FREE INSTALL! so no problem for me, I had little else to do. The monthly cost will be less then we were paying for dialup and the extra phone line, and we get 256K service. From what I see, it makes the internet a much more friendly place, well quicker anyhow.

I worked several hours after he left trying to figure out how I would get it on my local network. Finally just put a second network card in my system, plugged in the DSL and used windows internet sharing to share the connection, works great, but one of the purposes of the upgrade was to have only the person who wants online to have to turn on their computer, and not have one run as a server, and I guess that we didn't reach that goal. I know I can get a router and make it work, but for now it works OK, as I am usually on my computer much of the day anyhow.

Enough with the geek talk. Haven't taken time to write much of late, but I have that urge now. One of those little stories that somehow finds it's way to your mind and won't go away until it gets on paper. Too tired tonight to do it, maybe in the morning if the story doesn't run away in my dreams.

Write ON, and may your next project sell.

Jerry 4-17-2002 0:49


It has been too long. I was in Houma all last week, and I still have not found a house, too difficult to please I guess. I have yet to meet anyone yet who sends their kids to public school. That is a shame and a frustration. Frank will look at more homes tomorrow. I am just praying that he will find the right one, soon, or else we will have to build.

I love Cajun country. I think it will be a great deal of fun to live down there. The other day, someone called my husband Mr. LeFort. Can you believe it? Frank's forebearers probably started out that way anyway, back when they were forced to leave France because they were Hugonauts. When they got to England they changed their name to Fort. Now we go down to Louisiana and it is changed back to LeFort. What goes around comes around. What would Frank's Hugonaut forebearers think about our kids going to Catholic school? They will be turning over in their graves.

The flowers down there in Louisiana are too beautiful to be believed. I love the cypress trees and the Spanish moss.

WhenI returned to Tulsa, I attended the monthly meeting of my RWA chapter. An author there gave a talk on plotting and brainstorming. I had a five minute talk with the speaker about my story and received some affirmation that my characters had proper motivations for their actions. I went home and immediately wrote the synopsis just the way I had wanted it all along. Now that I have thought it through, my writing is coming so much easier, and I understand my characters so much more. It is like I have been reintroduced to them.

It is good to be back and to be posting again. It is just that after being away for a little while, it is hard to read through all the missed posts. Anyway I have skimmed them and am please to find some new names and most my old friends.

Rhoda 4-16-2002 22:02



One of my old time cowboy friends looks like he may not live very long. I saw Dale today and his face was haggard and thin, eyes big and haunting with illness. I've known Dale for 30 years, he was an "old hand" at TX DOT when I started back in 1970. A rounder, in western parlance, hell-raiser to most others. Dressed in sweat stained Stetson, sun faded denim shirt, riding heeled cowboy boots and dusty Wrangler jeans. If you've ever attended rodeos, Dale was the guy that would be behind the shoots, (pens) helping the other cowboys who had entered hoping for the magic 8.

Annnnnnnnnnnnnnnd if you imagined there was a whiskey bottle in his hip pocket, you're right. There was. Thought, it might have been a wine bottle...but definitely not a soda pop. When not working the rodeo pens and twisting the bulls tails, Dale was out where the REAL action was, in the parking lot. Gathered around mud covered pickups with 30' horse trailers behind he and his cronies drank and swore and laughed and exchanged sexual stories that would make Freud break into a sweat. Entering these cowboy conversations was very difficult, akin to me interrupting Pulitzer prize ceremonies. I was only allowed because I was friends with his nephew, and even then we only hung around the fringes.

I recall the time, hours after the rodeo, Dale and friends decided to ride through town. On horses. Imagine the surprise of the solitary night watchman as he observed a throng of weaving horsemen approaching the courthouse. Well, in all fairness, the horses were walking straight, just the riders weaving. Soused to the max they slowly approached the courthouse, circled and moseyed onward. Several had loosened their wide belts and looped them over the saddle horn to assist in stability. A dangerous practice at best. It is reported that the night watchman radioed for instructions.

"Ah, base."

"Base here unit one."

"Base I have a bunch of drunk cowboys at the courthouse."

"Unit one, how do you know they're drunk?"

"Well, one is standing in the saddle and is relieving himself."

Long pause. "Relieiving himself where?"

"Ah base, on the hood of my car."

"That damn Dale! Arrest them all!"

"Yes sir! What is the charge base?"


"DWR base?"

"Thats right unit one. Drunk while riding!"

"Base, what about the horses? Should I bring them in as well?"

Long pause. "Nah, hell with it. Go get a cup of coffee. We'll talk with them tomorrow. Damn cowboys."

Dale was recently ordered to dry out by a local judge and confined to a local nursing home. He said he was assigned a nice room with a great view of an outside wall. An elderly woman in a wheelchair developed a crush on him and would wheel down to his room every evening. Dressed to the "nines" and a couple pounds of makeup she homed in on Dale. Imagine an elderly sun weathered rodeo cowboy, hat firmly planted on his head, booted and spurred, sitting on the edge of a bed as an elderly woman made eyes at him from a wheelchair. Dale related he was friendly to the woman, but told her he must remain faithful to his wife. Whichever wife he was talking about would no doubt be floored as he was never faithful to any of them.

But there comes a time when even the strongest constitution must fail after being battered by years of over indulgence and hundreds of gallons of booze. Dale is failing now. His eyes had a beaten, hollow look when I talked to him today. Lately I have seen him sitting down at the pens where he keeps his last horse. He sits on an old worn out chair under a tree staring into the distance. I know Dale feels the end is near, but I don't believe he would change a thing about his life. Willie Nelson sings of cowboys and their impossible dreams. I'll always think of Dale when I hear Willie sing.


Randall 4-16-2002 21:06


Hi to you (smiles).

Rachel 4-16-2002 19:08


You can write anything you want at any time (hugs). It is nice to see a post from you. It's been to long. I also have not much to say. It is 4:05pm and I have done about all I plan to do for one day. In a few minutes I am going to put on the PJ's. It isn't even 5pm and I am ready for bed. Yikes!

Take care you

Rachel 4-16-2002 19:07

Lurking on, waiting for a moment when I can pop in and add something intelligent (might not happen for awhile).

Rhoda 4-16-2002 18:42

There was another one (Not one of mine) reporting a sighting of the Queen Mum with Elvis in a pink cadillac, but that's another story.

Eddie French 4-16-2002 17:46

Tribute to Laughsend.
This is one of my articles which featured in the last ever issue of 5th April 2002:

It’s over a year since the massive cull of farm animals during the foot and mouth outbreak and we thought that the surviving animals had forgotten all about it.
Not so.
This reporter has disturbing news to report.
As this graphic scene depicts, (Comic picture showing man in white slaughter suit slumped over a table with a huge spike sticking out of his back, dripping blood) the once docile dairy herds and harmlessly frolicking pig troupes are now on the warpath.
Workers assisting DEFRA with the clean up operations have been systematically targeted while on lunch breaks and tea stops. This unfortunate worker (Left) was found in the porta cabin where he spent breaks on a farm near Woodbridge, Suffolk. He has a ‘Humane Killer’ sticking inhumanely out of his back. So far we have uncovered over 150 revenge killings around farms stretching from Dumfries and Galloway to Suffolk in the south of the country.
To date, we have been unable to solicit a response from DEFRA personnel.
Farmer Toby Muchbucketslop (59) who owns the farm at which the latest revenge attack took place had this to say:
“Scotland Yard have been around since the weekend, they have interviewed all of my cattle herd, what’s left of it, and most of the pigs. It’s not looking good for Porky Longtrotter though, who hasn’t been seen since the body was found, I didn’t think he had it in him to tell the truth”
Porky Longtrotter is three feet tall and weighs 22 stone. He is Caucasian (Pinkish) and says “Oink” a lot.
Police advise the public not to approach Porky unless they have a bottle of brown source with them or a jar of apple source very handy. If you do manage to catch sight of Porky ring 0220 PORKRIND.

Eddie 4-16-2002 17:42

How rude of me. I forgot.


Eddie 4-16-2002 17:32

IR*.... Please don't use that swear word here!
Ugh... I've come over all funny just thinking about it.

Eddie 4-16-2002 17:31

Maybe I was arbitrary, but I eliminated what obviously looked like a spam. If I am out of line or others think otherwise, let me know. At any rate, re the IRS, too true about having to write a big check. We got a big surprise. Not as bad as last year, but still. Oh, well, it is making us do some necessary budgetary house cleaning and hard headed thinking. Take care all.

Jack 4-16-2002 17:28

I was deeply involved in Laughsend. I have been writing for the Paul and Mark Lowton for a long time.
We are in the process of setting up a new site just now to carry on the good work. (We being the regular writers).
But yes, you are right it was a shock. The problem was that it is [Was] a non profit site and the costs just went up and up. I did manage to get 2 articles into the last ever issue and got over 1000 views between them both. We (the writers) were exchanging comic coments about the lads going missing presumed dead for days before the crash. Hence the cryptic message on the second page last week. (Laughsend is Dead!
Ah well, all good things come to an end in the end.

Eddie 4-16-2002 17:26

EDDIE -- Did you see the announcement re the Laughsend shutdown? It's a shame -- that was a funny site!

howard 4-16-2002 17:16

Phew! :¬)

Eddie 4-16-2002 15:55


I have never had spiders pounce on me, not in any kind of weather or temperature. We do have those jumping spiders. they really don't seem to jump at people. They seem to jump away from them... You must have very aggressive spiders in your neck of the woods (grins).

Take care you.

Rachel 4-16-2002 15:30

2:00PM on 4/16 (income tax day) and here it is 88 degrees F! (31 degrees Celcius)

The warm weather is making things crazy! I walked out to take down the laundry, and ended up with over a dozen of those small jumping spiders all over me. They were in my hair, on the clothes, etc. I saw one perched on the top frame of my glasses -- boy are they quick! I've been sitting here at the computer for a few minutes, and just picked another off my arm.

Gotta go finish my tax return. Big check to write. Dunno how -- there's gaping holes in every account we have. It just doesn't pay to work any more! Maybe we should turn the IRS loose on the terrorists -- they'd soon be out of business!

howard 4-16-2002 14:16

Hi Christi :O)

Heather - I missed you (hugs). Nice to read you.

Sarah - I love your name. I have a character with the name Sarah. As far as your post goes I think that you need to write for yourself. You need not to worry about what your family or any other person will think of your writing. YOu should never apologize or moderate your writing to suite others. Write from your heart and with feeling, then at least the writing will mean something to you. I don't think that there are a lot of writers who get rich in the cash sense. There are however a lot of writers who gain richness in experience and life. You gain the richness of knowing yourself and of being able to listen to the heartbeat of the world around you. I think that is part of what writing and reading is about. Making money is kind of a nice idea... It isn't the easiest thing to make money at writing. I know that is ture. I also know that when I walk into a book store that it is full of books written by people who found a way to make money by writing. What I say is be true to yourself. I also would suggest a job, or keeping any job you have. We all need money for our bread and butter (smiles and hugs).

Rachel 4-16-2002 13:34

All right! All right! So I had more to say than I thought!

Do I get a welcome back? *sniff sniff*

Heather 4-16-2002 11:35

Hey everybody! I'm lur-r-r-rking! It just seems, lately, that as soon as I click on 'post a message' I run out of things to say.
Sarah - you don't really need the support of your family if you truly want to be a writer. Sometimes the closest people to you are afraid to know whether or not your work is going to be any good, so they won't read it. Don't worry about it. You will get plenty of feedback from friends, or fellow writers, teachers, etc. My mother still says that any artistic pursuit is impractical, and will never earn me much money. Do you know why she says that? (I bet she doesn't even know why) My mother was a potter. She made porcelain pots, stoneware dishes, beautiful hanging planters, and all sorts of things. She didn't make very much money when she sold her pottery, (Heck, we lived in Sault Ste. Marie! Very tiny city) and she probably felt eventually that any of her efforts were really just a hobby, and that no one in their right minds could live off this kind of cash flow.
There are potters who do, but they are a small representation of the actual number of potters out there.
Compare that to how many people who go into say, accounting, I'll wager that a much larger percentage of people who went into accounting are still in it, and making a steady income.
Any artistic pursuit, at least for the first long while, is going to be risky. Artists rely on other people's interest to make money - we don't get to simply graduate with our degree and get a job at the pottery firm.
The art world is cut-throat. It may not appear that way, but the form is extremely malleable. It changes hour to hour. What do people want? They want art, they want writing, they want beauty that isn't tailored so they'll like it. Just create, in your very own way, using your very own ideas, and someone else (besides you) will discover their passion for your work. It may be the high-up editor for Random House, or it may be your mother in law. The real reason we write is to give the stories inside us a place to reside.
Not everyone will want to peek in the window.

But it's still a house you built. Enjoy it. Don't worry about anything else.

Heather 4-16-2002 11:31

Sarah: Welcome... What I would do, is if you do a couple of projects, give them to your family to read.
Thats what I did... Was told to stick with it. But also to get a steady job

Taylor 4-16-2002 9:01

SARAH -- The only real convincing argument for most people is a continuing series of royalty checks and a growing "clips" file. If you're a writer, write.
Have you read "On Writing" by Stephen King? There's some neat stuff there about how he stuck to it, and finally made it.

CHRISTI -- Oh - that one. I was looking at that not long ago, wishing I could get into it again.

We've had a pair of flickers hanging around lately, and the finches have come back earlier this year than they have in the past. I remember back when the girls were small, and we had a bird feeder just outside the front window. They had a graphic lesson in nature the day they were watching the birds feeding, and a sparrowhawk swooped in and took one of the smaller birds in a sudden puff of feathers. It's quite a startling thing to see!
I've been trying to discourage the pigeons and grackles -- they make such a mess.

howard 4-16-2002 7:34

I am trying desperatly to convince my family that becomming a writer is a legit. goal in life. All they ever say is that I am trying to live a pipe dream and that my chances really suck. They haven't even read my work! They don't know if I am any good or not, who are they to tell me I won't make it? GRRRRRRR!! Sorry, moving on. Is there an arguement that actually works? Please share your thoughts on this matter.


Sarah 4-16-2002 4:25

Gariess, I don't know about cardinals around here. There are the Stellar Jays, with the same kind of tuft on their head. I like the Whiskey Jacks too. Around campgrounds, they get so tame that they will steal food from your table while you are sitting there.
The starlings here aren't native, and they've driven some songbirds out of the area. A local conservation group is making specific efforts to bring back the bluebird, by putting out homes that a starling can't fit into. They are notorious for nest stealing. I actually think the starlings are pretty right now, in their mating plumage with bright yellow beaks.
My in-laws had a pair of red-tailed hawks build a nest in their tall pine tree, but it was blown out in a bad wind. Sadly, both eggs were busted. We were looking forward to watching the fledglings. When I used to live out and beyond town, we had a golden eagle nest up the mountain above our place. Every spring we were treated to the spectacle of eaglets learning to fly. What clowns! Graceful they were NOT!

Blue skies!

Tina 4-16-2002 2:02

Pass that this way, OK, fffffffuuuuummm, wehwwwww.

No, no my son and his step-daughter have their birthday parties at the same time, you know a "joint" party.

Jerry 4-16-2002 1:32

You have asked a question, at last, that I can answer. Regarding… "How do we promote Elaine's diagnosis, and get her -- and her description into the medical journals?"
The way to do this is to get the disorder covered by Blue Cross. After that, every doctor in the country will diagnose it.

The cedar waxwing is a favorite of mine as well. I only saw them in the bird books until I went out into the dunes at Provincetown one day. There was a great number of them. They are very distinct, especially with the cardinal-like tuft. Do you have cardinals in your area?

It seems that the grackles and the starlings are unpopular everywhere. There are so many of them. They apparently are very successful as species. I look forward to seeing the first oriole every spring. Meaning the first one that I see. They are not abundant, here, but there are enough that they get seen once in a while.

gariess 4-16-2002 1:20

HOWARD, The one you were writing about a year and a half ago and posting in the Workbook, remember? I don't really remember names, but there were officers ... you know, Captains and such. You should really blow the dust off that one.

Christi 4-16-2002 1:14

CHRISTI -- To which unfinished science fiction story are you referring? There are so many... :-(

EDDIE -- I hope that "joint party" ain't what it sounds like at first thought! But knowing Jerry, I don't think so.

VIV -- Buying back the furniture is exactly what my daughter and son-in-law had to do a few months ago, after his grandmother died. She had promised Bryan several beautiful antique pieces, and everyone in the family knew about it. But when they went to the house to get them, they were gone. It was not a case of greed or malice, just a misunderstanding on the part of a very confused aunt, who had sold them to an enterprising antiques dealer who had just happened to call on her the day after the funeral, and convinced her that she had better sell them right away, or someone would confiscate them.
They paid a visit to the dealer, and managed to locate one piece, which they bought back for sentimental reasons.

howard 4-15-2002 22:32

Hey Viv, you snuck in on me. Hi!
Oh, and watch out for Roger, he's got a thing for bi-lingual babes.

Christi 4-15-2002 21:42

++Rog--I mean Christi++

Tee hee! Thanks for 'outing' me, MEL! Haahaha! I didn't mean to actually fool anyone but that was mighty fun anyhoo. I gotta say, MEL, you're like a breath of fresh air for me today. Nice to see you so chipper!

Sorry, TAYLOR! But your comments to Roger were so sweet and I didn't want to poo on your party. :D Remain sweet, it suits you mightily.

Does anyone else miss IMA RYDER like I do? I also miss her alter ego, TEEKAY. WHERE ARE YOU, GIRLIE!!??????? I've been patient, Lord knows I have been, but I'm about ready to come and beat down your door. *sob!* Where o where is my lil' Kangie poo?

TINA BAMBINA, Add my name to the list of green people. Sounds like you had a virtual Writer's Retreat going on at your house! Man, it ain't easy bein green, as MEL might say. I'm glad your writing is flying off your fingertips.. Keep it up!

I've just finished another story and am working on three more (one at a time, of course *snort*). Got lots o' stories out there looking for a home, but as yet they're still orphans, poor dears. I'm also trying to get an agent for my children's stories, but the children's market is a dismal place in the U.S. right now. Got some nice comments, but everyone says they've got too many clients or have too many projects in the works.

Hi JACK, RACHEL, EDDIE, HOWARD, MARY, GARIESS, our missing HEATHER, and everyone else!

ps: HOWARD, did you ever finish working on that sci-fi story? For some reason I thought of it the other day and remembered that I really liked it. If you did would you like to have a reader for it? I'd volunteer. Just thought I'd ask.

G'night mates

Christi 4-15-2002 21:38

That's a bitter pill for your wife to swallow. Worst of all those folks will trash the furniture and she knows it. I wonder if you could watch the pawn shops and want ads and catch it as it falls! Still, knowing families that don't work together, it'll be a big secret when they sell it for drugs or money.

There's something wrong with the parenting when all the children turn out with big emotional scars. It says something about how those kids were shown love. Maybe your wife has every right to be angry at her mother. It sounds like there might have been similar games played with possessions when she lived in that house. It's neat she has you on her side. Most times, just knowing someone agrees with you about how tough it is makes it all better.

It always worries me that I'm doing something terrible to my children. After reading Tina's posts and yours I want to run right out and get a bell, some Lysol, and make a Will all at once. The problem with possessions bothers me. I've seen a lot of people who didn't have enough things as children feel badly as adults. I've also seen a lot of adults who've had too much given in a resentful manner. Worst thing I ever saw was a friend of mine who had a brother with a drug habit. Anytime she got something nice the brother stole it. She lived with a parent who allowed this to happen time and time again. It really was completely unfair and she was so bright and sensitive. One time she was "relieved" of the money to buy books that she'd gotten from a scholarship fund. That seemed to be the ultimate unfairness to me because she was working so hard in school while I was goofing off. What gets me, is I was too young and stupid to realize I could have gone out and told someone else and gotten things fixed for her. I just sat and listened but didn't go to an adult about the problem. I think there must be nothing as horrible as living in the same house with someone who abuses drugs. For an adult there are choices because they can walk out, but with a child it's different.

I think the idea of furniture pressed a nerve for me. Furniture symbolizes stablity and settling down. We're going to be able to move into our first house in two years. I really want furniture and to fix it up. It's something I dream about a lot. Bedroom sets and how the garden is going to look are dreams I've pushed way back for the last 21 years. I'm really ready to have those things and enjoy them now. I can't wait. What is nice is we have the area for a wood workshop in the house we bought a long time ago. I think we're going to have to learn a lot because we have a lot of wants as far as furniture. We'll buy some but we're going to be picky enough to have to make some as well. We have a thing about wood, it has to be good wood and made so that the grains and patterns are unique.

Mostly having a garden that won't have to be torn apart and thrown away when I move will be important. My plants get to be buddies and I hate to think I'm going to have to find them all good homes before I leave. I'm watching everyone right now to see how they care for their plants so I can find the right homes for them. What is going to be great is I'm going to plant bulbs and fruit trees. I can't wait.

Fixing up the house we've rented out for the last 11 years is going to be interesting too. I'm going to tear out the carpets and put in wood floors, sandblast the beautiful red brick someone painted a greasy shade of green, paint, put in German windows. Ohhhhhhh am I having fun planning it all in my mind. What's going to be tough is finding the supplies and creating this stuff at the same time holding down on expenses. Yup, I can see how I feel about that furniture just from the way I reacted to that post. Right now we're waiting to own possessions we've been denied for 22 years. They are things that most every American owns. I think we want to feel like Americans that's why were suddenly full of wanting. Strange how possessions and ownership mean a lot more than the item itself. I wonder how we'll feel once we have them? What is scary is I think we might get them all, then get rid of them all and buy a big ocean-worthy sailboat.

Viv 4-15-2002 21:17

I'm an idiot... I am laughing to... It didn't connect

Taylor 4-15-2002 20:24


Our backyards sound very alike. I love the chickadee birds. They are so adorable! I like all the colours of them. We get little red headed and yellow headed fellows. Lots with the white with black stipes on their heads. I think they are sweet as pie. They dart in and out of the lattice work on our fence. In another house we lived in they had taken up residence in this huge pine tree. I loved to watch them weave in and out and all around that tree. There are many morning when I am up very early. I have a hard time staying asleep. If I wake up after more than an hour or two of sleep that is it for me. I will never get back to sleep. I will then take up residence on the sofa next to the french doors. In the spring and summer when the weather is good, I will open the doors. I like to listen to the birds wake up. It starts out with one or two and then what a noise! They wake me up if I am not up all ready (grins). I hope that when I move I will be close to something natural. I don't like homes where front and back you face another house. That sort of thing kind of brings me down a bit. It is homes like that where I go to work on my gardens.

Hope all is well with you :o)

Rachel 4-15-2002 20:22

I just hope that you meant that they were 'SHARING' the venue :¬)

Eddie 4-15-2002 17:57

What on earth is a 'JOINT' party?
Forgive my ignorance

Eddie 4-15-2002 17:55

Jerry, the worst pests around my place are the European starlings and the Magpies. They chase off the sweet little birds. Between my backyard and the neighbour's, there is a line of pine trees that house many chickadees and house wrens. I love watching their antics. The occasional family of quail comes through. They know that my backyard is safe from cats, and many mornings I've found little quail impressions in the dirt and grass. Lots of flickers come by, and nice little yellow-winged somethings whose name I don't know. There's a grassland above my house, so lots of red-tailed hawks, owls, osprey and the occasional bald eagle come by. And of course, the ubiquitous (sp?) Canada Geese. (begin Chicken Man voice) They're everywhere, they're everywhere! (end Chicken Man voice)

Mel, the funny thing is that I was so dissatisfied with that character's section, and couldn't pinpoint why. Now I know. He knew, and I finally listened! Fortunately, he's not a major character and the personality change won't have too many effects on the rest of the story. When I finally gave in and let him be bad, I thought of your character interviews. I'll have to make a point of doing that!

(I'd say 'blue skies' but it's rainy and gross so :-p on that!)

Tina 4-15-2002 15:06

Tina - We get the Cedar Wax wings quit often also, they are fantastic birds, wonderful color and markings. The campground we frequent always has a good abundance of them, as well as many other birds that never show up in town. It's funny, for years I never paid any attention to birds, but since one of my nephew's gave me a bird feeder, it has opened a whole new world for me. It is a rare day that I don't have at least one feeder filled with attractive feed to attract different birds, the only ones that I don't care for are those dang grackles, but so far this year we have only had a couple. Last year they took over the feeder so I left it empty for about two weeks then began to feed again, it seems the grackles don't have the patience of other species, so they left to find better grounds and the other birds returned. A year ago last winter we had one lone grackle who stayed the winter because of an injured leg, now I did like seeing him, knowing that my feeder did keep him alive and well all winter. When his buddies returned he left with them.

Jerry Ericsson 4-15-2002 13:49


Hi all yoose guys and gals! And I mean "high" - 75 degrees Fahrenheit today in the Southern Tier of New York State - whooee!! :-) HOWARD, MARK, are you sunning yourselves??!!

HOWARD, ELAINE: You mean it's a disease???!!! Ohh, and I thought I was just lousy at typing all these years, heh heh!

TAYLOR: You're too innocently cute, I can't help myself. Forgive me for giggling...Um, in your welcome to "Roger," what you "missed" was the post after "his," where CHRISTI confessed to posting as "Roger"...oh, I can't let her keep laughing at your expense!!! We love ya still!!! :-)

TINA: A whole weekend WRITING????!!!! I'm greener than KERMIT!!!!! I had a usually unfortunate whole weekend of NOT Writing, sigh... Take that turncoat-character out to lunch and find out what's on his hidden agenda! Might be more surprises to come. ;-] Author warning!!!

I wish I had more time to post, but the work-desk piles call... I'm writing mentally as I discard these old paperbacks from the library collection...


Mel 4-15-2002 13:48

ELAINE -- I am very familiar with keyboarding fingerual displacement syndrome ! KFDS is a very real phenomenon, and can be frustrating at the very least. I myself have suffered from it, and actually had surgery to correct it.
Well, they didn't call it that, but the effect was the same.
GROUP -- How do we promote Elaine's diagnosis, and get her -- and her description into the medical journals? Seriously! And while we're at it, I've been trying to get my own portmanteau word "Edress" into general usage for several years now, but nobody seems to pick it up. Elaine, I guess we're just doomed to anonymity... Welcome to the club!

howard 4-15-2002 13:12

Hi, y'all,
I'm having momentary keyboarding fingerual displacement syndrome (KFDS for short) Talking about families, mine hasn't gotten into any serious trouble yet (except for the occasional trip down to the hospital for minor incidents) When I was younger, being sick and having mom around was so reassuring, but now that I'm just a little bit older and in high school my mom thinks its a crime for me to be sick! Oh, well, life goes on. Unbelievably, I don't have much to talk about today. (It must be a Monday)lol. Welcome ROGER or RICHARD or both which ever the case may be. Momentary memory loss is part of KFDS's symptons. For anyone who is seriously worried, I just made KFDS up, I can't seem to get the right keys on my keyboard and it's taken me about 20 minutes just to get this much on the NB. Monday mornings I just kind of dddrraaggg my way through the day. Since I have taken enough of everybody's precious time, I'll let one of you other NB'ers a chance to steal somebody elses time!
Till Niagara Falls!

Elaine 4-15-2002 12:19

Hi all!

Jerry a white dove? Cool! My favourite elusive bird is the cedar waxwing. They only come by a few times a year, and always in a flock of about a dozen.

Hi Mary! That was a lovely memory. Mom's are awesome. Any day that I was home sick, mom would let me choose lunch. I always wanted macs and cheese - not KD, the real kind - and fried balogna, and she always made it. To this day, fried balogna is the ultimate comfort food.

I had the rare fortune of being able to write all weekend. Poor weather kept me out of the garden, and the house was clean for a change, and no relative work. Yay! And while I was writing - fixing a spot I was very dissatisfied with - something unexpected happened. One of the characters, who I always thought of as a decent guy, turned out to be a jerk. I didn't intend on it, he just sort of did his own thing. This is, I believe, proof that the characters are actually in charge of a story, and we poor scribes are just recording it for posterity. ;-)

Regardless, it made for a wonderful weekend.

Blue Skies!

Tina 4-15-2002 11:15


Roger: Welcome... we are writers who get together and talk about stuff, sometimes personnel, on rare occasions we talk political stuff... And on occasions we share little Shortie stories on Theme nights... And we sometimes talk about our projects.

Did I miss anything guys?

Whoever used the phrase "Political Quicksand" I liked it. The phrase I mean.

Oh I just found out something depressing on the weekend at Karaoke, one of the regulars there and one I got on with very well passed away during the week... So it was kind of a solemn night at Karaoke.

Taylor 4-15-2002 2:08

Wow a bell. I think if I had mentioned anything like that to my folks, Dad would have replied with his usual reply when I asked him for something "I'll kick your ass if you even look like you want a bell!"

Mom would have probably had one had he let her though, she is that kind of a mom. She sure changed after dad passed on.

Today was spent preparing for summer. The wife and daughter took off all the plastic, removed the storm windows and replaced them with screens. I managed to work the inside job of using my rubber mallet to pound the storms from their frames. They fit very tight to keep out the cold, but it makes them extremely hard to change. We have talked of replacing them with the new aluminum type but the cost is prohibitive right now.

We hauled out all the grass clippings from our yard and our daughters, the dump ground was very busy with all sorts of pickups, cars pulling trailers and such doing the same thing.

When we prepare for winter, everyone says we are winterizing, it makes me wonder, now that we are preparing for summer, are we summarizing?

Next weekend is my son's birthday, the plan is to drive up to his home for a joint party for he and his step-daughter, their birthdays are just a few days apart, so we always celebrate them both at the same time.

I look forward to this trip, it is always fun to go up there.

Jerry Ericsson 4-15-2002 1:02


When I was sick as a kid, I should have gone to your house. Only the soon to be dead would have tried ringing a bell for my mother.

I was reading Jack's post, just now. I came to the expression, tit for tat. That phrase always manages to distract me from any context in which it appears. I remember when I was a young man. I would go to the beach with a whole bucketful of tat hoping to make a profitable exchange. These excursions invariably proved that the expression is entirely meaningless.

gariess 4-15-2002 0:51

Man o Man, everything changes yet stays the same.

You all seem to be well, except for Richard, who I am exceptionally glad to welcome back into our midst. I won't laugh at you, Richard, I like ya! Always have.

RANDALL: I understand your wife's passion for having that bedroom suite. If it has any of the stories the little china bell on my mother's kitchen shelf has, she must be devastated. I think that porcelain bell is the only thing in my parent's house I would argue about. The rest of it is just stuff.

Whenever I was sick as a little girl, my father was in charge of taking us to the doctor's office. By the time we returned, my mother had the couch lined with white sheets that smelled like Lysol spray, three big huge pillows that nobody ever saw unless they were sick, and a metal tv tray with tissues, a glass of orange juice, cough drops, a new coloring book and crayons and that bell. Whenever I needed anything, I would just ring the bell and I don't remember one time when my Mom acted annoyed, and believe me, I RANG that bell.

Even now when I get sick, I miss having that bell and the tv tray fulla stuff. Any my mom.

Mary 4-14-2002 22:55

Hahahaha! That was really me. I was just tired of checking what was going on with everyone and finding my own name still at the top. And now here it is again. Sigh.

Christi 4-14-2002 22:00

Hey dudes. Just wonderin what you do here. Looks weird.

Roger 4-14-2002 21:59

Jerry, Wonder if that's some kind of sign. Neat!

Christi 4-14-2002 12:29

Randall, That sure sounds like a mess. Sorry. And sorry for your wife. It's a shame to leave that kind of legacy behind, the grappling, scheming kind. I'm sure your wife is still greiving quite a bit, and latching onto this may be the only way she's able to vent. Hope all turns out well. You're a great husband, and that's the important thing that will eventually pull her through this.

My Mother-in-law, when she died nearly two years ago, left her kids nothing to fight over. She was very poor, and attending her second year of bible college in Texas, working terrible menial jobs to pay for it. We think she may have known she was sick and didn't tell us until it was too late. Heartbreaking.

Anyway, she wanted to be a missionary/preacher. I wish she'd been able to accomplish that goal. The only thing my husband really wanted from her possessions was this rock--a fire opal, uncut. It's not worth much except in his memory. We've got the sum total of her possessions in our garage still, most of it not gone through yet. It was too hard for us, and sadly most of it has no worth and will have to be thrown away.

Hugs to you.

Christi 4-14-2002 12:28

Any significance to a white dove?

We just had one visit our feeder. I have never seen such beauty in a bird, it was snow white, with bright blue eyes.

Jerry Ericsson 4-14-2002 12:24


Viv, what my wife is feeling now is betrayal. We have good furniture, a nice home, 3 fine kids. I told her I would buy a bedroom suit, but she wants her mothers. She feels her mother and father should have written a better will outlining who gets what. Her anger is, sadly focused upon her mother, "Who should have known what was going to happen."

There are 5 siblings involved in this thing and several are real dandies.

1st child...my wife
Married twice, married to me 22 years
First husband petty thief, in prison
We have 3 children, 18, 19, 26 (stepdaughter) all doing great
Domestic engineer (IRS phrasing)
Physical problems relating to rare disease

2nd boy
Married 4 times
Children by 2 wives, paying support for 3 children (usually does not)
Now living with woman 20 years his senior
On drugs, crack, uppers, downers for 20 years
No teeth from drug use
Unable to maintain steady job
Last job assaulted by sister of a man he sold drugs too. Punched him out in front of Boss and whole store. Fired that day.
Has Hepatitis C, outlook bleak
Emotional problems

3rd daughter
The one causing all the problems
Married twice, children by first marriage only
First husband drug dealer, drug user, spent time in jail and federal prison
She was addicted to crack, forearms blotched from drug entry points
Out of the last 20 years spent 17 living with her parents
Emotional problems
Now married to drug dealer, possible grifter

This daughter has 3 children
Her 1st daughter, ward of State of Texas, for drug dependancy and severe emotional problems
This girl has 3 children of mixed racial descent
Unmarried, but lives with man 30 years her senior
High school dropout
Does drugs, served jail time for dealing
No visible means of support

2nd son, is wavering on good or bad citizen, hi school dropout, but working with father.

3rd son, arrested for stealing, vandalism, torching houses, confined to state boys school for 4 years. Released upon reaching 18, works fast food restaurant. Emotional problems. Suppose to take medication to control "urges" but sometimes forgets.

4th daughter
Prescription drug dependant
Emotional problems
Multiple marriages
1 child
Husband now is stable, but previous husbands were real lollies! (And one who thought he was a Dollie!) All were drug users and dealers, one ex in prison for drugs now.

5th son
Mental problems
Drug user, dealer
Served time in jail and prison for dealing
Attempted suicide
Emotional problems
However, seems to have settled down with a good woman at this time

I have observed this group for 22 years. With their life histories it is no wonder their parents perhaps displayed some fuzzy thinking at the end. Use this post, dear friends, as a tripwire. An alarm to make sure your last wishes are down on paper. If not, there may be hell to pay later on.


Randall 4-14-2002 11:53

Oh Howard- Taxes. That letter from IRS that said it would take six weeks to get our amended refund lied. We got the check the next day.

Our daughter is having trouble getting her W-2 from one of her former employers. Not that I think the fellow is being purposely mean about not issuing it, his wife left him, taking with her most of the business money, equipment and books. His bookkeeper has been trying to figure it all out, but we had to resort to calling the IRS, who gave us instructions, and sent a form that was supposed to be used in lew of the W-2. Only trouble the IRS agent who filled it out misspelled my daughter's name, misrepresented the dates that she worked for the guy and overestimated the wages she earned.

We filled with that form anyhow, and I guess she will just take a loss on the refund due to his ineptness.

Probably cause her to get audited.

Such is life. Like my nephew used to say, you live, you die, so what?

Jerry A.G. Ericsson 4-14-2002 0:33

Jack - no problem. Just my politics showing, I know I should curb the urge but in these troubled times I think we should at least bring out our feelings and examine them, then put them away where they will do no harm again.

We are getting those mythical April Showers that bring May flowers now. I surely welcome them as the winter has been a particularly dry one with very little snow, at least till the last month or so. It has that clean fresh smell outside, just let the dog out for his nightly chore. Our yard has been turning green, I'm amazed at how quickly that happens, one day all is brown the next it's green.

Time to sleep, so have a good night all, and may the story you write today be a best seller.

Write on.

Jerry A.G. Ericsson 4-14-2002 0:27

This advice is going to hurt. Reach in your back pocket, pull out your wallet. Hand it to your wife and say, "let's go look for such a fantastic bedroom set that it will put that thing we're getting all upset about to shame." Then start combing the antique shops, estate sales, and looking for weird ways to get absolutely one of a kind furniture. Tell her you are going to make her feel rich as a princess so she'll look down at those folks squabbling and wrinkle her nose.

What she is feeling is poor. Poor and helpless to get furniture. You know THAT can be cured. All it takes is buying something so nice that she feels rich. That will show your love for her and fill up that needy "hole" that is making her feel upset.

Sounds like spoiling but love can't spoil. Money is a temporary problem. The most this can cost is a couple thousand bucks. I know that sounds like a bunch but if you budget and if she takes up babysitting for a neighbor, it can be done. Just show her she doesn't have to fight for the love and respect of owning something nice. She needs to be given to right now. Does this make sense?
(Sounds like the mother and father never gave to their children without strings attached. She needs to be given things with love.)

Viv 4-13-2002 21:21

Arrrrgghhhhh! Income tax! Did you know that years ago the Supreme Court declared the income tax to be unconstitutional?!?! Yet we still have it.
I just did mine, (or got did by mine, as the case may be) and now I'm trying to figure out how to go about paying it.
And if I don't, the orcs at the IRS will be breathing down my shorts (I'm too tall for them lowlife critters to be breating down my neck!).

Re the Palestinians (no such country): they never owned the area they claim, and they turned down (several times) a settlement that would have given them 90% of what they now claim. It's not a land of their own that they want -- it's annihilation of Jews and Christians. But it's not a new thing -- it's been going on since the days of Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob in one form or another. Only the technology has been updated.

But I do think that if they're going to do the suicide bomb thing, they should do it right, and to that end I offer the following: Set up a practice field for them somewhere, perhaps populated with old department store manniquins (wearing yarmulkes to make it realistic). Then allow these suicide bombers to practice their strikes -- with live bombs, of course. They'd save on explosives by using only one stick of dynamite per practice run. Perhaps hire a French judge to rule on their effectiveness. Maybe even make it an Olympic event.

RANDALL -- I know what you mean about the mess after a death in the family. I can remember as a young boy, watching my aunts and uncles self destruct and destroy the family after my great-grandmother died. I'm so thankful my mom and dad didn't jump into the fray. Some of them were still not speaking to each other 40-50 years later, and now the last of them is gone. And her neices and nephews didn't even wait for the body to cool before emptying her house and her savings, stealing it from the rest of the family. Sad situation. And most of them are gone now, and they didn't take anything with them. Not even the things that were so important that they quarreled over them even at the funeral home.

Why am I reminded of the story about the man who died after living a life of evil excess and greed? He robbed widows and orphans, cheated old folks out of their pensions, and, in general, was one of the most despised men in town. The other was his brother.
Well, this brother came to the pastor of the town's Baptist church, and told him that he wanted him to do the funeral. The pastor demurred, saying that he wouldn't feel right saying a blessing over such an unrepentant wretch.
The brother leered at him, and said "You will do the funeral, and what's more, you'll say my brother was a good man -- a saint, even."
When the pastor protested again that he could do no such thing, the man showed him the mortgage to the church and parsonage (which he held), and told him that he would foreclose immediately if his demands were not met. The pastor, knowing that the church was behind on the mortgage payments, reluctantly agreed.
At the funeral, the man handed the pastor the documents, and said "Okay, just to show you that I'm not all that bad, I'll trust you to do what's right."
Well, the pastor stood up next to the coffin and proceeded to deliver the eulogy: "Dear ones, family and friends of the departed, before you lies,,," he hesitated. "Here in this coffin lie the remains,,," He stopped, cleared his throat, mumbled a silent prayer to the Almighty, then he looked at the brother, and the rest of the folks seated there, and went on. "Before you lies the remains of one of the most evil, greedy, nasty, malodourous, cantankerous, lying cheats I have ever had the displeasure to lay eyes upon." With this he looked over at the brother, who was about to have an apoplectic fit, and continued: "But compared to his brother, he was a saint!"

howard 4-13-2002 20:05

Jerry: Is OK :-). The Middle East has been political quicksand for centuries/millenia , with one group or another either being heroes or villains depending on when you looked and from what perspective you looked from. We can only cross our fingers, as I indicated, and hope that peace will get its chance sometime soon.

Allein: Fran's email is fran@webwitch.com . I will pass along that you are able to make it . Main thing is to know when you will be arriving and how you two can connect with each other. For everyone else, you are definitely invited if you are in the area and the URL is http://www.sfnorthwest.org/jackandfransocial.html

Take care everyone. Oh, have lost 35 pounds so far. Now just have 20 pounds to go for my projected goal, but may go a bit beyond just to give myself some wiggle room as I go off the diet and into maintenance just to make sure I do not start balooning again.

Jack Jack and Fran's Personal Page 4-13-2002 17:03

Jack - I'm able to make it to the social next weekend. What was Fran's address again so I can send her the info?

Allein Peachick's Gallery 4-13-2002 14:51

Jack - as I said, I never have known a lot about the middle east politics. Not that I wasn't interested, just never got around to researching it.

I guess I should have paid more attention. I do recall when there was a flare up in the mid 70's the unit I was then stationed with, the 3 Armored Cav in Fort Bliss Texas, a unit dedicated to desert warfare training was alerted. We had thirty minutes to report to our stations with our alert bags, bags we were required to keep a ready for such problems. They pushed us through all the processing for overseas rotation stations, where we had our shot's updated, prepared wills, assigned recipients for our SGLI life insurance, and were issued desert camo clothing. Then they herded us aboard C-141 jet aircraft, and taxied us to the runway. We all knew we were on our way to defend Israel from Egypt.

Then for some reason, a peace gesture of some sort, they turned the aircraft around and we got off. We went back to our base where we unpacked all the equipment we had loaded, and went back home.

I guess I, like many others love the underdog, and you can't get more underdog then Israel. I have always had the greatest respect for those brave souls, for all they and their ancestors have gone through, simply because they choose to worship the self same God that we worship. Let us not forget that Christ was a Jew.

I know we are all one family under the skin and all that, but all that Israel has put up with since their nation was formed sort of gives them the right to defend their very lives, or at least that's the way I figure.

All people have a few skeletons in their closets, US included, in fact we have more then our fair share.

Look what we did to the Native Americans, and the Black slaves. That Israel did a few questionable acts when fighting for freedom may, on the surface look bad, but again, look at Dresden, Hiroshima, Nagasaki, MayLie (SP?).

No, I guess I was simply saying I think what they are doing defending their very home, the lives of their children, their parents, their grand parents should be supported, because I think we would do the same in the same situation.

In war, when one nation conquers another, or seizes the land of another, it is often recognized as the fruit of war and becomes the land of the conquer, much like we took Texas and New Mexico, yet when Israel seizes the west bank, then we call it occupied territory, not the spoils of war.

I guess I am simply looking at this conflict in oldthink. I have yet to adjust my mind to newthink.

Jerry A.G. Ericsson 4-13-2002 13:15



Jack, in THE ARAB-ISRAELI WARS, Chaim Herzog details the conflicts between Jews and their Arab neighbors I came across several things I didn't know. On April 13, 1948, a convoy of 80 civilians, mostly doctors and nurses were en route to a hospital in Jerusalem. The convoy was ambushed by Arab forces while British troops 200 yards away, the post responsible for the road, did nothing. This was before the United Nations mandate that created the State of Israel. Those that were not killed in the seven-hour battle were burned alive when Arab forces set the buses on fire. Jewish leaders tried vainly to get the British to intervene. They would not, basically because the British army was pro Arab. So much in fact that they often stood by while Jews were massacred. Taking their weapons while allowing Arabs to keep theirs! That sounds a lot like WW II when American and British forces KNEW that Germans were slaughtering millions of Jews in death camps in Poland and did nothing. The railroad tracks leading to the camps could have been destroyed by allied airplanes, roads and supply dumps and bridges destroyed. But they were not.

Ever see some of those distressing movies and still photos where naked Jews are standing in line to be and were shot in pits? A lot of those were taken by Jews from Palestine who were impersonating German staff officers, supposedly touring Nazi death camps. These brave men infiltrated from Palestine, through Turkey into German controlled Europe with the will to show the world what was occurring. Little known fact. These horrific photos were shown to American and British leaders. They were dismissed by Anglo politicians as isolated events...

In the days and weeks leading up to the creation of the state of Israel, ex-British soldiers and Anglo mercs were hired by Arab interests to driving jeeps or cars loaded with explosives into Jewish settlements. White skinned persons could easily pass through Jewish checkpoints. The Jews bombed the King David Hotel, headquarters of the British Army, because they determined that these "car bombers" (sound familiar?) were staying in the hotel, indeed operating out of the King David. In Texas we say..."When you open the ball, you dance to the music."

There is a saying I hear occasionally..."As goes California, so goes the nation." I believe this can be altered..."As goes Israel, so goes the world." The Jews have been fighting intolerance for 2,000 years and if they seem a bit too preoccupied with the safety of their nation...who can blame them? Aside from America they have received too little help from "civilized nations." And if they get a little testy when leftist news reporters only report one side of the war, ditto.

Arab interests dictate that there are conflicts between Israeli and Palestine forces. This covers up a lot of bad judgement on their part in 1948 and 1949. Sadly there will never be peace in this area. Never.


Randall 4-13-2002 12:00

Sorry mind is crazy... forgot to put name on my post... Well hope everyone's writing alot.

Taylor 4-13-2002 8:47

Hi all... Have not been on lately because haven't quite been myself the last couple of days... Just dropping in to see how is everyone?
Hope all is well

4-13-2002 8:45

Jerry: I do not wish to start any sort of controversy, but the comments of one of the older mothers in Janin whose son was part of the "collateral damage" perhaps said it best. "Violence perpetuates violence" Tit for tat on each side makes everybody at fault. On top of that, the sheer numbers say it all. Far more Palestinians have died than Isralis, but numbers mean nothing in this context. Though most of the violence towards Israelis was thtrough terrorism and the Israelis through military action, it is somewhat instructive to remember that the Palestinians are learning from tricks and tips practiced by the Jewish resistance fighters, in that case the Irgud, when they blew up the King David Hotel with many British soldiers, Arabs and Palestinians killed in 1946. I think Gandhi perhaps said it best, an eye for an eye and tooth for tooth and ear for ear and the whole world will be blind and deaf and not able to eat. I am paraphrasing a bit, but I have to say that this is perhaps the first time that President Bush and I fall on the same side of an issue other than the War on Terrorism and the Talaban in Afghanistan.

All of that said, I can well understand the inclination on both sides to strike out. Sadly said, I think what is taking place now in the occupied portions of the West Bank will only lead to more suicide bombings, more tears and more anguish. It will in no way root out the terrorist infrastructure. Rather, it will create it. I say this as one who for long years has been a supporter of Israel and an admirer of what has been accomplished there. This is a situation where I wish some of the same calm hard headed negotiating skills that were used to help more or less resolve the Troubles in Northern Ireland could be directed in this situation. Too many have died on both sides. Too many bright ideas, words and wisdom have been silenced, both Israeli and Palestinian. I have no answers in this regard, just prayers that at some point in all of this that a miracle can happen and both sides can pull back from this inevitable war. At the very least, all hopes of continuing any kind of coherent policy against terrorism on our part will be severely handicapped as there are angry anti-American/Israeli demonstrations in the streets of Cairo, Yemen, Paris. This is not to say that this new kind of war cannot continue and be prosecuted successfully, but the good will on the part of many parts of the region will dry up and blow away if we do not engage and get both sides to pull back and perhaps come to some kind of sanity. That is tall order. Colin Powell, I hope, can be successful at. My thoughts.

Jack King David Hotel example 4-13-2002 2:24

Oh, and another thing, should you desire to blow the crap out of Bin Laudin and his minions, the link below will take you to a game where you can do just that. It is a remake of Duke Nukem 3D, but instead of aliens, you can shoot Al Quaid-a or what ever the heck they call themselves. They run around chanting Bin Lauden and such, you get a M-16, and TNT to kill them, then it's just a shoot em all game. The scenery is all desert with the exception of one Ryder truck.

I know after a half hour of shooting those guys, I feel much more relaxed.

Jerry A.G. Ericsson In Quest of Bin Laudin 4-13-2002 0:55

Just thinking, the news is showing the bloody photo's from Israel, has anyone heard from Arik?

I do hope he is well.

It saddens me to see our President tell Israel to stop their "aggression" I guess I don't know a lot about middle east politics and all, but somehow I think Israel is fighting the good fight against terrorism, much the same as we are. Looks to me that there is a slow Sept 11th going on there with a few more dead every day.

Jerry A.G. Ericsson 4-13-2002 0:30

Randall - I know the feeling. My mom married an old farmer, many years after dad passed on. The old fellow accompanied my mom out to our house in Minnesota, where I was serving as an Army Recruiter. He sat down at our dining room table after eating a fine meal that my good wife prepared and explained to me and my sister that he wanted to marry my mother. He went on to say that his farm was his, and when he died the farm would go to his brother, not to mom's kids.

We told him that we understood, welcomed him to our midst, and talked them into marrying right away, and they wed in the living room of our house, that next day. We had our neighbor who was a minister do the ceremony, it was quite nice and will be remembered well by all.

After the wedding, the fellows brother, fearing that the farm would go to us talked the fellow into selling the farm to him, which he did. Mom and he lived very well on the money from that farm, and the brother was very proud of his now much larger farm. The brother was married to my mom's sister.

About five or six years latter, the fellow died.

Mom's lawyer told her that since he represented both her and her brother-in-law that he would be dropping her from his client list and representing the brother in a contest of the will which left everything to my mom. Mom didn't know what to do, she consulted another lawyer here in town, who told her that he figured he could just settle out of court for forty thousand dollars off the top of the estate, nearly the entire price of the farm.

The brother maintained that since the will indicated that the farm was to be willed to him, he should be able to get his money back and the farm. Mom's husband had failed to change his will after the sale of the farm.

Mom called me, I lived about sixty miles from here then, I lined her up with a good lawyer I knew from my days of law enforcement here in town, the lawyer was from Rapid City, but agreed to take the case. I went with mom to the probate, and since the lawyer from Rapid City called the lawyer here in town, and explained that mom was properly represented, the lawyer here in town dropped the contest, and the money went to mom.

At any rate, mom and her sister never spoke for over ten years after that. When her brother-in-law died, she refused to attend the funeral, and was angry at me for going. That has been over fifteen years ago now, and mom does speak to her sister if she meets her up town, but that's about it.

It is so sad, before this began mom and her sister were very close, our families always got together for holidays, and when ever they were in town they ended up at our house. Her son and I, were about the same age, and he stayed with us when he was going to high school, I spent some of my summer down helping on their farm. All that over a will.

I see this happen to so many families, I guess it just shows a person that proper preparation of a will should be the first not the last thing one thinks about, and it should always be kept up to date to insure that families don't fall apart when someone dies.

Guess I best rewrite mine too, while I am thinking about, I still have our 1975 Pacer willed to my son, and that old wreck has been dead now for many years. My wife doesn't have one. I should know better, after all I was a trained paralegal.

The best man at our wedding back in 1969, the fellow who was my best friend for many years just dropped by tonight. He lives in Nebraska now, and is home for a visit. It was so great to see him again, for a few hours tonight, I felt like I was eighteen again, well almost anyhow. We had a super time talking about the old days. God how I miss those days when I knew it all, and I would live for ever.

Jerry A.G. Ericsson 4-13-2002 0:23


TGIF Gang!!!

Why is that I am never disappointed, in human behavior? Could it be that decades of observing, reading, indeed living among the animal herd known as human beings have inured me to injustice? I made the comment a few weeks ago that most persons in the industrial world are born intelligent. Third world nations are mostly filled with poor souls who were born unlucky. Many Americans live lives without losing this God given blessing. Call it ... SMARTS, for want of a better word. But somewhere in their life they develop an illness...STUPIDITY. This illness strikes slowly, creeping upon the unlucky, blurring their outlook on life, focusing desires upon self, dulling any feeling of compassion toward others... It's if a little deity named Contrary takes control and makes them behave, well, contrary to the flow of humanity. Unaware of the illness, STUPIDITY, they make life difficult for persons defined as NORMAL.

My father-in-law died earlier in the month. A difficult man, but a father of five, a husband of one, an Englishman who immigrated through Ellis Island in 1949. He joined the US Army in 1952 and retired in 1972. His wife died two years ago and he was probably grieving the whole time. His epitaph is no better or worse than many.

But since he died, the will was ambiguous, one daughter possessed by CONTRARY and most of the family have descended into chaos. No, No, not us! I have held my wife out of the fray. Her sister named the executor for reasons not clearly understood emptied his bank accounts before he died, declared the house hers (legally, it is as per a deed) and all possessions inside, cars outside, hers as well. Everyone else can just F#@& off! She has filed for five insurance policies and made her intentions clear. The money is hers.


I don't give a rats ass for the money or the property. Kiss off as far as I am concerned. My wife is devastated over a bedroom suit she was promised by her mother. That's out the window for now, probably forever. I have been in the family 22 years, observing listening, learning. They all delved deep into good old fashioned American white trash culture. Hard core, vein busting drugs, strains of Hepatitus C, suicide attempts, county jail time for using, some federal time for dealing, multiple marriages, rampant alcoholism, a bottom dog existence in trash filled rent houses overrun with roaches and fleas. A nightmare existence that would send my parents or grandparents into spasms of dismay.

I refused to help my wife claim what was promised her ..."Lets just go up there kick in the door and load out what I was promised!"

I told her that was a job for attorneys. The other brain damaged siblings are scrambling for legal begals. I am struggling to hold my wife above the fray. The morale high ground I said.

"I can't sleep on a morale high ground." she retorted.

"I'll buy you a new bedroom suit." I promised.

"I want my mothers, she said I could have it...." she cries.

Worse case scenario for sure. I know that when one descends into the sewer, even searching for the morale high ground...you're gonna get splattered. Conversely, a world above human sewers of greed and self-destruction...being intelligent, law abiding in our world is like standing on K2 as a snow storm sweeps upon you. You're blinded, disoriented, helpless...but you have to stand there...the option is a lot worse.


Randall 4-12-2002 21:24


I think that if somebody is laughing at your expense on a regular basis that you should speak to them. It is all good and well to share some laughs with friends. What is not all right, is when you find that one person is picking at you on a regular basis. That makes me think that such a person would be suffering from a very low self esteem. I send you hugs and hope that the poem isn't about something that is happening to you right now. Being a teen is hard enough without your friends giving you crap. I am giving you double hugs. Dang it! We all know that the parents are the ones who deal crap out to the teens (winks).

Take care you.

Rachel 4-12-2002 21:14

Richard - nice to see you!
Hope you're not feeling as down as your poem depicts. (((hugs)))

Teek - you'll have more fun if you step into the room! *wink*

Heather 4-12-2002 17:43

Elaine - Mary was making a joke...

Heather 4-12-2002 17:37

Please Stop Laughing

Cheap laughter
Misused and abused
Shield and protector
Safety from the real

Stop laughing
Please stop laughing
It's all you ever do
Don't know if I can trust you

When does with me stop?
Where does at me start?
Why is all you do laugh?
I'm sick of laughing

I want to know you
Really know you
Not just laugh with you
Every day

When the laughters run out
What have we left?
Cheap laughters killing me
Heart and soul


Richard 4-12-2002 17:04

Hi all :)

Now it's spring. There is just enough dry, bare ground for the cats to do a little prowling around the house. All three were outside for about an hour and throughly enjoyed themselves.

The sun is shining. I went outside without shoes or socks! I'm not cold today! Yipee!!!!!!

Carol 4-12-2002 16:51

Spring has sprung. Wonderful warm couple of days now. The wife was just going over to our daughters house this morning, the first time she used her car since the trip to Rapid City.

She came running (well walking real fast at any rate) back to the house, said the engine just fell out of her car.

Well to make a long story short, the head gasket blew sometime on the trip and the engine siezed up. I finally got it started with lots of cursing and jumping the starter. Took it to my uncle's garage, he is the best profesional mechanic here in town. He said it would run around three hundred sixty bucks to fix.

When it rains it pours.

Anyone intrested in a slightly used .45 APC pistol? Only used as a carry gun by a cop for seven years, in great shape.

Just kidding, but I guess it will go up for sale so I can pay for that fix.

Gotta let the dog out now, the mailman has gone, and that's the signal for our little dog that he can go back outside. He doesn't like the mailman much so we try to have him indoors when he's due. Only problem with that is that the mailman is not all that punctual, comes sometime between 11 AM and 1 PM. Today it was at noon.

For such a little dog, he sure has a loud bark, and I think if he could catch that mailman, he'd be like one of those mexican beaded lizards when they bite they never let go.

Jerry Ericsson 4-12-2002 14:09


Hi you :o) Hope you get the homework done in time. I've been lurking around a bit this morning. This place is never quite as empty as it might seem (grins). There are lurks in cars those who eat chocolate and can't speak because their mouths are full, there are others who are trying to hide out with a lampshade for cover. There are cats on the beams and ghosts floating about. You never really know who or what will pop up and at any given time.

Take care you.

Rachel 4-12-2002 13:13

Hello? Is anyone there? I guess I'm the only one on at 11:30...well at least for me it's 11:30, maybe it's 12:30 or 10:30 or who knows when else you guys are, when it's 11:30 here! Well I just found out a procrastinated (and and I probable spelled that wrong) and that I have 5 German sentences to right by 7th set, (it's 4th set now so I have some time on my hands) so I'd better go.
Till Niagara Falls!

Elaine 4-12-2002 12:29

WOW! That was strange! Just in case none of you understood that, Howard said he couldn't stand the echo, so I shouted to him so the echo wouldn't catch up with me. (Sheepish grin) It's a Friday all right! I always turn stranger on Fridays, Mondays too and Sundays and Tuesdays and Thursdays and Saturdays and Wednesdays, as well. A moment of craziness can be good for a person once a while, I guess. Hope y'all had a good laugh over my little crazy post!
Till Niagara Falls!

Elaine 4-12-2002 12:23

HI-iiiiii HOW-wwaaaarrrddddd!!!!!!!!!!
HO-ooooowwwwww aaaaarrrrrrrrrreeeeeeeeeee YO-ooooouuuuuuuu?
I'M-mmmmmmmm o-ovvvveeeeeerrrrrrr h-eeeerrrrreeeee!!!!!!! C-aaaaaannnnnn y-oooooouuuuuuuu h-eeeeaaaaarrrrrr m-mmmmeeeeeeeee????????? D-ooooooeeeeeesssssss t-hhhhheeeeee s-hhhhooooouuuuutttttiiiiiinnnnnggggggg h-eeeeellllppppp w-iiiiitttttthhhhhh t-hhhhhhhheeeeeee e-cccchhhhoooooeeeeeessssss? I-iiiii'vvvvveeeeee g-ooooottttt t-oooo l-eeeeeeaaaaavvvvvveeeee, n-ooooowwwwww!!!!! B-yyyyyyeeeeee
T-iiiiilllllll N-iiiiaaaagggaaarrrraaaaaa F-aaaallllllllllsssss!!!!!!!!!!

Elaine 4-12-2002 12:15

Hey Mary: What is dentalectomies? I tried to look it up in a dictionary, but I wasn't given a definition. Dictionarys are so fussy some times!
How is everyone else doing? I'm alright, but I'm having problems with boredom at home. It's frustating, with 4 brothers and sisters there should be plenty to do, but I haven't been able to do anything worth while all week! I thought I'd never complain about homework, but the workload is pathetic! Okay, I know I'm complaining (again). I'll stop now and I'll just have to remember when college comes that I would wish to be in the same state I'm in now, with no homework and carefree! Since I was so bored last night (and wasn't allowed on the Internet) I visited my paint icon, and I made an alien, a real live (well maybe not alive) bonafide (on the paper at least) E.T.! Well, I wish everybody with dentist appointments good luck and hope nothing goes wrong.
Till Niagara Falls!

Elaine 4-12-2002 12:10

ALLEIN: I think the shortie theme was Dentalectomies. hehehe

I will have one on Monday for next week. Sorry.

Mary 4-12-2002 11:50

I forgot to mention my dentist. The last time I saw him he said he could fix my teeth on Thursday, but I'd have to leave my head overnight on Wednesday.

gariess 4-12-2002 2:31

Hi, Debra,

I guess you must already be here by now. Well, I hope you have a nice weekend.

Has anybody seen the David Lynch movie, Mulholland Drive? If you understood any of this movie, there are hundreds of reviewers who are waiting for you to explain it to them. I am waiting for somebody to explain it to me. One renowned critic says it is a dreamscape that lapses into momentary
states of wakefulness at random points. Others say just the opposite. I can't say one way or the other. What is the opposite of oatmeal? The opposite of light is dark, slow/fast, hot/cold, but some things, like oatmeal, don't really have an opposite. In case you are wondering, oatmeal has nothing to do with the movie. At least as far as I know, it doesn't. The film is supposed to be a stylistic, film noir, surrealistic mystery. The local video store hands out a paper listing things to watch for in the film. This should have warned me what a confounding experience I was in for. It states that two important clues appear before the credits roll. Before the credits roll? Nothing is supposed to happen before the credits roll in a movie. I read the list and I still can make no sense of this plot. Some critics say the whole thing is a practical joke on the part of Lynch. I say, "Lynch Lynch."

gariess 4-12-2002 2:22

Um...what's the shortie theme for this week again? *ducks*

Allein Peachick's Gallery 4-12-2002 1:58

The fix didn't take. She called this morning, couldn't get online. I could hear the terror of loss of contact in her voice. A terror that pre-internet folks would never understand, but those of us who are connected know.

I grabbed my tools and some disks and rushed over. I looked at her installation, and discovered several errors. Rather then fix them individually, I did the instant fix with FORMAT C: /Q.

Sixty minutes later, the computer was alive and well, connections flowed, emails were downloaded, and all was right with the world.

Another internet emergency rapidly tended by:


SUPER computer guy.

Jerry Ericsson 4-12-2002 0:25

Hello -- o --- o --- o!

Where is everybody --- y --- y --- y?

Can't stand this echo --- o --- o --- o!

Going to bed --- ed --- ed --- ed!

howard 4-11-2002 23:02


I'm on my way down Gariess. We are leaving tomorrow. The Cape will never be the same again.

Debra 4-11-2002 19:56

*sneaking up behind Teekay, who's concentrating overly much on sneeking peeks from the door* BOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOO!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! Hee hee!!!!

What I meant to say was *lurk lurk*.

I must say the dentist discussion isn't lending itself to a positive image in my head of my upcoming Dental visit on the 30th. I'm now imagining all kinds of gore. Thanks guys. :)

Christi 4-11-2002 10:56

......lurch,....lurch,......lurch,......l-i-n-g-e-r-......lurchlurchlurch cre-e-e-e-a-a-a-a-k
(remove thumb)
BANG! (door again)

Teekay 4-11-2002 2:16

Randall - I think I know the feeling, you see I am charged with the maintenance of not only all the machines I have in this house, but also those in my sisters. Tonight my sister's daughter called, mom's computer is on the blink. I've been showing her how to do this stuff, so I talked her through reformat and reinstall. It went well enough that I hope I don't have to go clean up after her.

Meanwhile, back at the ranch style house, the wife overhears this conversation.

"Well!" she says "You haven't fixed my machine right yet, I can't play Epic Pinball on mine you know and it's been that way since BEFORE you fixed your sisters the last time!"

Spent the next four hours working on her machine so she can play ALL her pinball games (what WAS I thinking when I got all those stupid pinball games for her in the first place!)

But, I do have my little hundred dollar upgrade (really it was $101.01, you know how Ebay goes) and I am overjoyed with the results. I wonder what truck this motherboard and processor fell out of anyhow. You see the fellow advertised it as ASUS motherboard with DURON processor. When I cleaned the processor up, it wasn't a DURON after all, but an Athlon. Runs at a true 1 gig. What a difference from the old 400 MHZ system I upgraded. This could well be the best computer upgrade I have ever done. I looked all over on pricewatch.com and the cheapest I can find this combo is $169.95 with $16.00 shipping.

That and the new $89.00 CD burner that the wife got for me the other day in Rapid City, makes me a very happy fellow. I couldn't imagine the price drop on those puppies, got that 32x12x40 burner for less then I could find an 8 speed on EBAY, and that from Office Max no less.

Additional surgery story - when I was an army recruiter back in Marshall MN, I went to the dentist, who told me that my problem was impacted wisdom teeth. He cut both of the lower and one upper out at the same time. Didn't put me out, just used the gas and novacane. He had this tape player with headphones, put them on and gave me the gas. The tape was the Capitan and Taniell. Now every time I hear Muskrat Love, my jaws begin to hurt, and I can taste that blood. Haven't had the urge to buy that tape and when it comes on the radio, I change stations. Arn't I lucky that the oldies stations never play that song.

Jerry Ericsson 4-11-2002 0:42


We suffered a severe computer outage about the first of March Jerry. Through the good offices of my son and his friend we swapped a darn good system "More memory Dad!" for a Hewlett Packard model something or another. It does look imposing, a tower two feet tall with three data entry ports and all kind of neat looking lights.

The only problem was after a two week delay it arrived and promply crashed. "Uh some driver problems!" the 18 year old Computer wizz said. Back to the shop...along with our old computer..."We need some spare parts Dad."

Another week goes by and the thing comes back in. After a long fruitless weekend my son and friend throw up their hands and retreat to the sanctuary of my sons bedroom. This was probably the result of my screaming tantrum, knashing of teeth, and throwing of ashes over my head. I was busily constructing an assualt tower outside my sons bedroom door when my wife halted the project.

"No, I don't know what Greek fire is. Besides that, there is not enought room for that thing and the boys are out the window anyway!"

Back to the shop...another week goes by. Back in and the @&^$%# thing is deader than a two week old roadkill. I was rudely informed by the 911 operator not to call in again and received another call from the local child protection office.

"Mr. Henderson! It has been brought to our attention that you were observed chasing two teenagers down the street holding a rather large computer over your head. Now this behavior is not acceptable and we are watching further developments."

Two weeks after hotmail has deleted all my e-mail a sedan screeches to a halt in front of our house. A masked blonde headed kid who I have known since day #1 sets a box on the sidewalk. The sedan roars away driven by another self-annointed computer guru. "More memory Mr. Henderson."

I feel it is important to warn my fellow Americans and other nationalities as well. Some time this summer two teenagers that I know quite well will enter the US Air Force. They both wish to work with computers and the only thing I have to say is watch for falling jet planes and satllites. Indeed God help us all!


Randall 4-10-2002 23:19

You know, I never did put down what the NB means to me.
Here's what I think, the NB doesn't matter, it's the people who write in it, who inspire those who are new and who are old, it's the friendships and opinions, the hopes, the joys, the pains, the heartaches that we all share as a family. The NB is just a place for us to get closer to our wide-spread family. Thank you all for being here for all of us when we need to unwind or share opinions that burden our minds. Once again, HAPPY 6TH BIRTHDAY TO THE NB!!!!!!!
Till Niagara Falls

Elaine 4-10-2002 22:55

Just editing a little bit on my post. It's supposed be 'Retainers last you you're whole life, huh?' and when I have my surgery I won't be able to speak for weeks not in weeks.
Till Niagara Falls!

Elaine 4-10-2002 22:29

Make that "Childrens books and authors"

howard 4-10-2002 22:06

I went out to the bibliomania site and discovered they have an author's name spelt wrong in their young readers section. A virtual cuppa to the first one who finds it. I sent them a note a while back, but they've not acknowledged it.
Hint: Probably the old-timers would catch it first...

howrad 4-10-2002 22:04

DEBRA -- I guess it all nets out to "Ain't nuthin new - you'll get by!"
ANFSCD -- I waited until this afternoon to do my taxes -- and my computer went comatose. I hate computers.
There will be NO computers in heaven.
There will be plenty of paper and sharp pencils, and lots of inspiration, and no writers block. The muses (will they make it?) will be everywhere at once, and the editors -- nahhh!

howard 4-10-2002 22:00

I asked you all answered:

I'm comforted and freaked out all at the same time.


I really mean it.

Debra 4-10-2002 21:11

Goodness -- all these surgery posts. Hubby had the impacted wisdom surgery, and nerve damage. The damage is minimal and he can still drink, kiss (oh, can he kiss!) and yell. hehehehe I had the lovely experience of waking up in the middle of surgery. I remember laying on cold steel, feeling the pull of "something" and struggling to say "ow." I did finally croak out a small "ow" and then I don't remember a thing till I woke up in my room again. It's strange how your insides can feel cold metal just as easy, if not easier, than your outsides. Good thing I'm a writer, I tend to look back at the experience objectively, keeping notes for future reference.

Have been having a streak of not sleeping. Not sleeping, means no dreams, no writing. Sheesh. And since this started before the time change, I can't put the blame there. Can't put the blame anywhere but on myself. Maybe a good long soak in the tub tonight will help. ....

Carol 4-10-2002 19:06

Would anyone be interested in either a live seminar or audio program sharing how to develop a proposal that not only attracts agents but major NY Publishers as well?

The proposal in the program is the actual one used by the author to secure a high powered agent and ultimately receive a large advance from a major publisher (Wiley & Son). The audio package also includes a workbook and explanations as to why each aspect of the proposal is important.

You can then cut and paste your information on the proposal and begin submitting it immediately.

By the way, the author had previously been published by a small local publisher who did nothing to promote his books and yet he was able to sell over 500,000 since 1996. It's nice to get information that's not theory.

The course will sell for around $49 whether it's on tape or live. Email me with your preferences. If you want a live program please tell me what city you're near.

Continued Success,


John Author/Speaker John Fuhrman 4-10-2002 15:07

LITTER: I got the Henderson book today! Yahooey. Thank you for all your offers of help.

Mary 4-10-2002 12:40

Wow! That's a lot about dental stuff, as for my past experiences with dental or anything serious for that matter, I've never been put under (yet) and I haven't had a tooth pulled, but I know that when I (or my parents) finally have enough money to start working on dental problems then I'll have to have 6 maybe 8 teeth pulled. I'm not looking forward to it. Retainers last you you're whole, huh? Well I guess then they'll have to do the surgery any way with the retainers. I'm not looking forward to the surgery either, but I know I need one. My lower jaw didn't grow at the same time as my top jaw so I have a huge overbite and I don't think that it's grown any since my last orthodontist (is that how you spell it?) appointment so they have to break my lower jaw, add some bone to it and then they have to bind it up. I'm not going to be able to speak in weeks, and I'll only be able to eat mushy stuff. Maybe they'll give me yogurt...
Anyway enough about that, I've got some good news...my muse is back! She crawled out from underneath the bed and gave me the idea for a poem that I needed for Lit II for today!
I'l like to share it with you it's titled 'The Lymrick'

A Lymrick is a neat thing
It has a certain ring
That makes the fish shout
And the birds swim about
And makes the reptiles sing

One of the birds had a fit
And one of the fish got a zit
The reptiles all choked
And the swans all croaked
When one of their feathers got bit

Soon the silliness spread
To one of the kids in bed
He spoke to his meeces
Broke an egg into pieces
Upon the principal's head

The principal, shocked and surprised
Carefully opened his eyes
Saw the boy on the tables
And reading the lables
Of extremely hilarious ties

These ties got to the ground
And walked without making a sound
They walked out of sight
All day and all night
And none of them could be found

The poor boy's name was Tad
The principal was mad
He gave him detention
(And it's best not to mention
Just what he got from his dad.)

The Lymrick caught a girl
She started to twirl and twirl
She spun 'round and 'round
Till her feet couldn't touch ground
And she landed on top of a pearl

Let me give you some good advice
To the Lymrick, don't ever be nice
He sits on the ground
Waiting for you to come 'round
And you're not going to like his price

If you happen to ever get caught
By the Lymrick and a silly thought
Take it easy, for a while
And remember to smile
By the silliness the Lymrick has brought.

C: Elaine 4-9-02
I don't know how to do the little corporated sign on the computer yet so a capital "c" will have to do for now.
Hope you enjoy!
Till Niagara Falls!

Elaine 4-10-2002 12:10

Funny we should be discussing dental treatment - I'm going in myself for a cleaning. I already know I have two cavities, and they'll probably find more. I know, disgraceful as I work in the field - just kidding. I do brush, but I have very weak teeth to begin with.

The subject of mouthguards and retainers, they can make a hard enough mouthguard that it works as a retainer. I'm not sure if it works as well as a retainer, but it's pretty good and you can still wear a bottom retainer with it.

No traumatic memories here with dentistry, it's all been okay. Except of course I've never have a root canal or a crown or a tooth pulled (with the exception of a baby tooth). I've had one oral surgery to take out an impacted wisdom tooth - no problems there.

When you work in the field, actually being on the other end of it as a patient is very humbling - and not just with dentistry, but with all other fields of medicine I'm sure.

Allein Peachick's Gallery 4-10-2002 2:42

What bothered me when I had my three back surgeries was the first one, I asked the anstesiologist what kind of drugs I was being given to put me out, he went down a long list of stuff but one was an amnesia agent. Ok so they make it so you can't remember, but if you wake up in the middle doesn't it still hurt like hell while your awake even if you don't remember?

I know it sure hurt when I woke up from the last one, I don't know why it was so much worse and my doctor never would tell me exactly what went on, but I simply couldn't recover from that one the way I did the first two, after the first two, I could walk over two miles at a shot two weeks after the surgery. I tried the same routine but couldn't get over a block before my back gave out.

When I moved down here, I learned from the physical therapist that I go to that the surgeon who did my back was fired from that hospital about a year after my surgery because he refused to update his procedures to the current standard. I guess the certificate on the wall from the Department of the Army showing he was an Army surgeon for several years back in the 70's should have given me cause to panic, but my local doctor swore this guy was the best in the state.

Guess doctors stick together on stuff like that. Ok so I sound a bit paranoid, but as the old saying goes, just because you feel paranoid, doesn't mean that the whole world isn't out to get you!.

Write ON!

Jerry Ericsson 4-10-2002 0:46


gariess 4-9-2002 22:46

That last post to Jerry was from me (Rachel)

4-9-2002 20:57


When I came round during my first surgery I am told that I went on a major attack. I don't remember it. At least not much. I remember wanting to get out the door and fighting anyone and anything that got in my way. I had to leave the office in medical greens because my cloths were so blood drenched that they felt I would cause a scene. Mine was one of the last times that the dentist put patients out in his office. I guess he decided it was just too dangerous. He told me that I should feel bad and that I was "a fiesty young woman." He seemed to find the whole event somewhat amusing. I still blush when I think of attacking people that way. You should have seen the bruise on the assitants face. I really did a number on her. I'm blushing right now thinking about it. I hate to think of hurting people the way I know I did. After the surgery I went out and bought a couple of dresses. Then I put one of the dresses on and we went to a friends house for a visit.

Ah well, I guess these things happen (blush). I'm glad that your family member freaked out as well. Kind of makes me feel a little better.

Thanks for sharing.

4-9-2002 20:57

Speaking of waking up during surgery, my nephew underwent emergency appendix surgery, and woke up in the middle, KO'ed the Surgeon. They put him back to sleep, and when the surgeon revived he finished the surgery.

When the wife had all her teeth pulled at once, they put her under, and I'll never forget hearing them hollering at her try and bring her to. I was a bit worried, so were they from the way they were shouting, but she did come around eventually. She was not in a good mood, for I guess about three weeks after that one. Don't blame her a bit either, that’s why I am so glad that they quit that stupid pull them all and put in dentures, their easier to contend with then real ones. I cling to each and every one of my teeth now.

I had one of those root canal's they kept me awake for it too, I think the worst was the boredom, that and getting cramps in my jaw from holding my mouth open too long.

Jerry 4-9-2002 18:41

Tina - my niece is named Kezia, she is in medical school right now, soon to be Dr. Kezia. She's a great little gal, full of spunk and a ton of fun to have around. I talked to her last night on MSN Messenger, she keeps changing her MSN nickname to go along with what's going on in her life. Last night she was "I'm lost please don't try to find me!" A few days ago she appeared as "Down like an elephant!" I asked her about the elephant thing, she said she fell down and when she hit it brought to mind a movie image where an elephant is shot and tumbles in the African Savana. I doubt that she would weigh over as hundred pounds soaking wet so the elephant thing made me curious.

I can sympathize with the novacane thing, it's right in my chart that I need a triple dose of the stuff, but the Dentist always has to try using a single dose first because "it should work dang it!" His assistant always tells him " I told you so" as he puts in the second series then the third. Only thing I hate about the whole thing is drooling all the way home.

Jerry 4-9-2002 18:34

Howard: What rotten luck to get a dentist that pulled all your teeth at 20. I got one who was "cap happy". He did some impressive work to earn his sailboat. It took a little while to catch on, but after that I changed dentists and was very careful to say, "stop after the exam and let me decide if I want to pay for any decision you make." Dentists seem to hear the words pay for and equate them with money!

Finally, I've found the dentist I like. She has tiny hands, is gentle, explains what she's doing, and is affordable.

Your daughter sounds a great deal like mine. She had a mole that had to come off her neck. They told her they'd have to put her to sleep to do it. She said, "Nothing doing! You can take that off while I watch in a mirror." She allowed the doctor to give her a local. Later I asked her why she didn't just go to sleep and have it off. She said, "That near my windpipe with a knife? No thanks, I want to watch for mistakes."

Viv 4-9-2002 18:26


So no, if you had it to do all over again you wouldn't get your teeth pulled!

We had a dentist like that around here too. I was one of his patients. My problem stems from his handy work years ago.

I'm am too one of the lucky ones. I will eventually have my mouth restored. That's what I'm working on. I'm trying to do it without losing one more tooth.

Debra 4-9-2002 16:04

DEBRA -- Just reminiscing a bit. I often do that, thinking what I'd do to that dentist if I ever got hold of him. You know, where I'd attach the electrodes and all that...
A few years ago I went to have a new set of dentures made, and the new dentist asked "How bad was the accident?" He thought that I'd had my face trashed in an accident, losing all my teeth. He said the xrays showed that my lower jaw had been broken in a couple of places, and he assumed it was from an accident. When I told him how it happened, and mentioned the other dentist's name, he started cussing and said "That SOB ruined too many peoples' mouths!" And that I was really one of the lucky ones.
I'm sure your experience will be much more pleasant...

TINA -- We used to use dace for bait around here there's Red Dace, Horned Dace, and a couple of others. Never heard of "chinta" though.

howard 4-9-2002 15:44


After saying that, what about the risk of since you never know what's going to happen while you're knocked out ...............

X-rated videos that show up later on the internet?

Debra 4-9-2002 15:43

They don’t use Novocain on me. It doesn’t work at all. They have to use some other thing (I don’t remember the name of it) and they have to work fast. The stuff they use costs a lot of money so they only use it when they know Novocain will have no impact. They could jab Novocain into me all day and I doubt it would work. I’ve felt dental work lots of times. It isn’t bad. Jerry’s daughter is right. It hurts, but you can get through. It’s a cold sort of hurting. I’m not keen on it at all. The damage I have is on the right side of my lips. It’s only in one section, kind of weird eh? It’s on the upper and lower lip in a space about half way across. The site that I don’t feel in is about .5 of a cm, maybe 1 cm. I feel that I don’t feel it. Do you know what I mean by that? It doesn’t change anything in my expressions. You will know if there is damage. I don’t know if it is something that they can really see or not. I think with me they were worried I would have a lot of damage on the right side. I’m fortunate that I did not. In particular given the fact that while they were working in a delicate area I came to and had an alimighty knock down, drag out, beat them stupid brawl. At least that is what I’m told. I really don’t remember much of it. My face looks the same. I’m cute as ever (winks). I was supposed to have gone back to see the dentist who did the work on my wisdom teeth. I never did. I didn't want to go back there. Maybe he could have detected something if I had. I could care less what he would have said at that piont. My pain was gone and everything was fine as far as I was concerend. I can’t say that you won’t have a problem. Each person and situation is different. Do you know that I have now spent quite some time in the bathroom looking at my mouth. It does look perfectly normal. I’ve smiled and made all sorts of faces at myself and all seems well to the eye. I’ve looked at pictures and my smile looks normal enough. Like I said the damage is minimal. I do feel it, I do know that it is there, it doesn't impact on my appearance or functioning in any way. I know I am lucky. Tends to be a theme in my life.

Try not to worry too much (hugs).

Rachel 4-9-2002 15:27


I'm sure you are cute with skin. I've seen your children, heartbreakers every last one!

Debra 4-9-2002 13:54


Now you HAVE met someone who goes through novacaine as fast as you do. Where one shot would work, I need four. The injection site is where I have the most trouble after I come home.

Tell me about nerve damage. Did your face change, your ex pressions I mean. If not and you have all those other sensations, then how do they even know you have damage in the first place. I'm worried about looking like I had a stroke.

Debra 4-9-2002 13:53


I was put out for the removal of impacted wisdom teeth. They were around the jaw and interwoven with the nerves. It wasn’t pretty. At least not on x-ray. I’m damned cute in with my skin on (laughter ;o).

Don’t worry so much about all of that stuff. I did have some lasting nerve damage. You sort of get used to it. Mine isn’t really that bad. I was lucky.
I don’t think you really need to worry about waking up. It is very unusual. I tend to process things (drugs) at a very high speed. I have not come across anyone else who has come awake in the middle of a surgery. I have since had surgery on my ankle. I didn’t wake up during that.

I bet that everyone who has ever had to go under has been afraid of the same things you list below. It is a strange experience. Not one to be entered into lightly. It’s good that you are thinking about it. You should talk to your doctor about any concerns you are having. Perhaps she/he will be able to set your mind at ease. Have you talked to the surgeon about the worries that you have (hugs)?

Minimal nerve damage, which I have, is really nothing to be afraid of. I don’t drool, I can feel kisses just fine and yes, I can burn my lips like anyone else (winks).

I believe that most dentist will set you up for the worst case scenario. They would rather do that, then have you scream blue murder and sue their pants off if something does go wrong. I think that they take every little thing that has ever happened to anyone, in the history of dentistry and they lay it out for you. They tell you that these things could happen.

Rachel 4-9-2002 13:39


By the way, dentists have learned now. No one ever gets out of the retainer. You have to wear it for life at bedtime. They now know that teeth shift as we age and if you want your teeth to stay put you need the retainer at night.

I used to grind my teeth and by wearing my retainer I now can't do that. So having these teeth fixed now was better than before when I didn't have a retainer. If you don't go into braces you can get a mouth guard to stop the grinding, but make no mistake it has to be stopped.

Debra 4-9-2002 13:20


I take it that your post was just informational and not to make me feel better!

If you had it to do all over again, would you get your teeth pulled?

Debra 4-9-2002 13:18

Hi all!

Randall welcome back! Here I sent you these awesome, inspiring e-mails, and never heard a peep from you. ;-) My feelings are healed, now.
Seriously, glad to have you back!

Elaine you are not alone! Many of my short story ideas come from dreams, and I often dream solutions for my novel. I always have to edit them for weirdness, but some of them have become respectable shorties.

The flu. Missed it this year (touch wood!) When I used to work in the mall, I washed every half hour, and took echinecea constantly to fend off the nasty bugs. Places like malls and school are breeding grounds, nicely contained air systems seething with the latest grosslie. ( new word! new word!)

Speaking of words, weird thing happened with two of my characters' names. Minor characters. I 'invented' their names, or at least I thought I did. I'd never heard the name Kezia before, or heard of a 'Dace'. Turns out Kezia is a bonafide name, and a dace is a small fish. This has happened a few times now, leading me to the conclusion that their truly isn't anything new under the sun. ;-D Including a 'chinta'. In my story, a chinta is a small creature with luminescent fur. I made it up years ago. Then one day I'm sitting in my truck at a stop light, and the car ahead of me has a personalised license that says 'CHINTA'. I wanted to park the truck and run up to ask the driver why she'd chosen that word, but the light changed! So, If anyone knows what a chinta really is, please let me know!

Blue Skies!

Tina 4-9-2002 13:08

DEBRA -- My wife has had root canals done (and re-done) under just a light anasthesia, and never complained that much.
When my daughter Andria (Joel's mom) was twelve, we took her to have a tooth filled. The dentist told his nurse to ready the novocaine, and Andi said "No, I don't need that." The doctor said "Oh yes, we have to administer novocaine." Andria replied "No, I don't want it!"
The dentist smiled one of those condescending smiles, and said "Oh, yes, you must have it. We don't want a crying little girl on our hands."
Andria just looked at him and said "If you come near my mouth with that needle it'll be you that's crying, because I'll break every finger in your hand. Now just fill the cavity or let me out of here!"
He came out and complained to my wife and me -- told us what she said, and my wife just asked him why he wasn't filling the tooth, because Andria wanted to get back to school.
He gave up, and was amazed that she just sat there and waiting for him to finish.
She said later that it hurt some, but she wasn't going to give him the satisfaction of flinching!

I myself am not overly fond of dentists. I had some problems with my teeth when I was younger, and finally one dentist convinced me that they all had to come out (I was 20 years old). So one morning I went to his office at 6AM, had a shot of sodium pentathol, and he proceeded to pull 26 teeth! He had already fitted me for dentures, and I woke up with the new ones in my mouth. I distinctly remember my first words: "Ohhhh shiiiiit!"
I've since found out that he had his license revoked, and last I heard he was selling used cars in upstate NY.

howard 4-9-2002 12:51


Was it root canel that you went to sleep for? I do those awake too.

I'm having surgery in my gum and the bone underneath.

I did have a small list of things I was worried about and now I have to add waking up during the surgery to that.

So thanks for that..............

Here's the list.

In the order I'm worried in.

Not waking up.

Waking up, not whole

Nerve damage

Waking up during the surgery

Losing my tooth.

Debra 4-9-2002 12:26

Hello again!
The weather has finally cleared up some up nort' but still pretty cloudy outside and I know you guys didn't want to hear the weather report. I just wish it felt more like spring. (It doesn't help that our school building doesn't know how to turn on the heater when it's cold enough. BRRR!!!)
Debra: My sympathy goes out to you. One day when I finally get braces and then off them and then on and off retainers, I'm going to have to get surgery done on my jaws. OUCH! I wish you luck with them.
Mel: Thanks for the welcome to the NB. It's never to late to welcome me. Though sometimes I get a little shy... (HAHAHAHAHAHAHA, Snort!) (Was that a good one!)
Well slowly, but surely, my muse has been creeping and surfacing from underneath my bed, maybe this time she won't leave me when I need a good inspiration...you guys know the shorty I promised you? Well, it's now become the first chapter of a very fine (but strange) book (I hope). It could be a shorty still (a very short shortie) but I had this crazy dream that would fit exactly with the main character, which is pretty creepy but hey, if it works it works, and I'm not going to complain. Does anybody get some of their inspirations from their dreams? Tell me that I'm not the only one who does this....please, if anyone would like to take a look at it before I put it in the NB just email me and I'll try to email you back ASAP. Please include your email so I can email you back with the first chapter (or shorty) Well see ya around!
Till Niagara Falls
PS. Here's the email address: lvw_euph13@yahoo.com
Thanks a bunch!

Elaine 4-9-2002 12:25


Flu... That I have had my share of. I am so done with the flu. I hope that the flu is done with me too. My children have had their fair share. I think that now that they are off school we will get a chance to recover our health. I honestly feel that schools are a massive breeding ground for flu. I have my doubts as to how much hand washing goes on after trips to the bathroom when the kiddies are at school (EWWWW)!

Hope the fresh air does its work (grins).

Hugs to you and smiles too!

Rachel 4-9-2002 12:10


I've had oral surgery twice. The first time did not go well. I was put under in the dentists office. I didn't stay under for the whole procedure. I don't know how most people would take waking up durin something like that. I didn't take it well at all (sheepish grins). My second oral surgery went great. I didn't even entertain the idea of being put under. I stayed awake the whole time. The dentist that I have now is excellent. I had a painless root canal. I don't know many people who can say that. My dentist even stayed open late for me, he had to call in a special assistant from out of the area, but he did it. I think my dentist is a sweet heart.

Okay, I admit that my jaw was a little tired after being cranked open for so long, but I don't think that is much to fuss about when I hear all the stories that are out there.

I hope that you get the painless, comfortable, problem free dental surgery.

Hugs to you.


Rachel 4-9-2002 12:03

Well guys and gals

It looks like I do have to have the oral surgery. I'm wavering between being put completely out and light sedation.

Please anyone who would like to put their two cents in on that one.

Debra 4-9-2002 11:35

Mel - we used to get the "flu" quite regularly when we were kids, but I thinkk ours was food poisoning, as we would have it for like 24 hours then get better. I'm not saying that's what your child has or anything though. I do notice that mom still get's the 24 hour flu. We were just discussing this with her last week, and she is finaly realizing that you can't leave food out on the counter from dinner till supper the next day. When I got maried, I stopped having that flu completely, as my good wife is very carful with leftovers and such.

Jerry 4-9-2002 10:56



I'm home today. Didn't get much sleep last night as the 11-year-old invited the FLU bug to hit the house--again! How many visits is that nasty germ allowed???!!! Not welcome here even the first time and now it's back??!! Some germs just don't have any sense of overstaying their welcome. Well, it hit the house literally - poor Tim didn't quite make it from his bedroom to the bathroom only a few yards distant... let's just say the upstairs hall has smelled better. 8-{ At least it's warm weather today - have the WINDOWS open and FRESH AIR now breezing through the house after a horrendous night...

HEATHER: I like ellipses...I'm sure I overuse them but they're there, so what the heck? :-) And we don't care how gross you are, we still love you!!! :-) (Just don't expect us to watch if your fingers head for disgusting places... You definitely need to keep those restless fingers engaged on the keyboard! (((HUGS))) and happy inspirations to you today! :-]

TEEKAY: I hope that "BANG" wasn't a gunshot--!! Report back...NOW!!!

JERRY: Ahh, thanks for the great visuals of antelope and buffalo! :-) "Home...home on the range..." Yup. There I be, at least in spirit!

RACHEL: I'll look for your email tomorrow, as I'm home today. Smiles for you today! :-)

RANDALL: TWO MONTHS in a bottle??!! Um, was there a beautiful genie in that bottle with you? Come on, 'fess up!!! ;-]

Wow. An unexpected day home. If I can keep myself awake long enough, maybe I'll attempt some reading (yes, people! Your mss. in my care...). The birds are singing, squawking, chirping - must be Spring - YES!!! Maybe I'll even, in honor of SPRING, drag the novel from the closet and dust it off...ooh, Ms. Muse heard that--she's looking my way...uh...uh... she's getting ready to pounce...uh, um (*swallow* *gulp*)...she's launched herself in my direction! She's coming in for a landing...oh my, oh my, oh my...oh boy...how sweet it is...how...how heavy she's become! I...uh...oof...can't mov...

Mel 4-9-2002 9:44

plod, plod, plod
plod, plod

Teekay 4-9-2002 2:55

Starch!!! I bet my mother still has a bottle of spray starch in her laundry cupboard... next time she gets mad at my dad I will suggest starching his undies!
Thanks, Jerry! *giggle*

Hmmm, that reminds me... I should pick up a bottle of spray starch...

Hello everyone,
and goodnight everyone...

I should really be apologizing for several things:

a) For using too many elipses in my posts of late
b) For contributing absolutely sweet ****-all lately, besides one measly shortie about a girl being plowed with a tire iron, of all things
c) Contributing boring, pointless drivel such as this list when in fact, I could be writing something worthy of a small dust jacket and bookmark
d) For bullshitting in the above example, saying my book could be worth a bookmark - I want you to read it all in one sitting, don't I? *BWAH HA HA HAHA!*
e) Picking my nose at the computer
f) Ruining your previous wonderful image of me that you all held so dear, and making up a terribly inane joke
g) For not writing 'I'm kidding!' after e), so that now you are all wondering where my fingers stray when I'm not typing...
h) More elipses! Will I ever not let my mental words trail off?
i) For whatever I stirred up last week with the bees, the Nixons, and those three innocent...


Heather 4-9-2002 0:46

Nearly forgot:

WELCOME HOME RANDALL We've missed you, hows the book coming?

Tell us all about it.

Wait while we gather around you.

Ok, now tell, tell all!

Jerry Ericsson 4-9-2002 0:46

Mark - maybe your right, either way, we didn't have to change time all the damn time. I guess that would be just all right too, if they left it this way, just leave it the hell alone, it's such a pain. Even our little dog Renn has trouble with it, he's been nuts now ever since we turned the clocks. He keeps thinking it should be bed time, wanting to go outside one last time, goes about five times a night now instead of once. I think he determines when its bed time by what tv show we watch, he loves Star Trek, knows that when it's over it's bed time.

Another trip to Rapid City, where the wife got her forth and hopefully last shot in her knee. The Dr. says it's doing well now, but may need another series in a year, or maybe in six months since her case is complicated due to her missing hip joint.

Another fine day in the Dakota's the trip went like clock work, there was a herd of antelope so large that it completely covered a hill. When they started running from the sound of our car the thunder of their hooves was so loud we could hear it over the sound of our car and the car radio. All that fine meat on the hoof. The buffalo herd was near the fence today, so we got a good look at them also, wonderful to see all the wild life.

I understand the bottom has dropped out of the bison market, so those big herds that were worth so much have come around to haunt the ranchers. Were it not for the good old Federal Government bailing them out by purchasing all the surplus bison meat, the whole business would go under much like Enron. They say Bison meat is the leanest meat there is, with almost no cholesterol, so the GI's should be getting a great diet.

Saw a couple of Airmen from Ellsworth AFB at the clinic my wife goes to. In my day they could never have appeared in their sloppy dress. I guess shining boots is no longer necessary in the military, neither is starch. They tell me that it is improper to starch BDU's so I guess the times they are a changing. Neither of the airmen had short hair, in fact it was growing over their ears, something that would have been unheard of even in the Airforce in my day.

I recently discovered a new browser for those of the PC persuasion called NetCaptor. It is great as it remembers the pages you visit regularly and simply loads them all when you sign on the internet, they reside as tabs at the bottom of the screen all you have to do is click on the tab and the window pops open with say, the NOTEBOOK open and ready to read.

Jerry Ericsson 4-9-2002 0:18


How sweet freedom!!!

E-mail at startiki2002@yahoo.com

Screw hotmail!!!

Sorry ladies.....


Randall 4-8-2002 23:12



I'm BACK! Mel ... I love Time In a Bottle by Jim Croce!

Annnnnnnnnnd that is where I've been for the last 2 months. In a bottle with a cork in it! A nightmare story involving ... well, I'll fill in the details soon. But I've been away from a computer for 2 months! Lost my e-mail address and everything!

No e-mails for 2 months, so if anyone has tried to contact me...it was a bust.

Gotta go.


RANDALL 4-8-2002 23:03


I've had a few days of kicking back on some river bank to write. You really can't beat it. There is nothing quite like a lazy afternoon spent by the riverside with a pen and notebook. Yup, that is a little slice of heaven.

Let me know if you get the e-mail I sent.

Hugs to you :o)

Rachel 4-8-2002 22:01

Happy sixth anniversary, Notebook! And thanks to Jack for it.

Jon and family 4-8-2002 21:12


ME: WELCOME! Sounds like your muse is burning something but the flame is sputtering in the melted wax. Keep writing, try an outline of ideas for forward motion; keep writing scenes anyway, they'll suddenly, one day, all fit together!

Mel again 4-8-2002 14:29


Hi everyone! All this talk about Daylight Savings and I had to go searching to find:

Time In A Bottle
Words and Music by Jim Croce
Copyright © 1975 Jim Croce, Atlantic Records.

If I could save time in a bottle
The first thing that I'd like to do
Is to save every day
Till Eternity passes away
Just to spend them with you

If I could make days last forever
If words could make wishes come true
I'd save every day like a treasure and then,
Again, I would spend them with you

But there never seems to be enough time
To do the things you want to do
Once you find them
I've looked around enough to know
That you're the one I want to go
Through time with

If I had a box just for wishes
And dreams that had never come true
The box would be empty
Except for the memory
Of how they were answered by you

But there never seems to be enough time
To do the things you want to do
Once you find them
I've looked around enough to know
That you're the one I want to go
Through time with

I sure do miss Jim Croce's fine songs...

Hope you're all writing great stuff these days, or at least writing something!!! :-) I'm writing...a to-do list for my muse...think she'll read it??? NAAHHH!!! Hmm, need to write the list anyway...

TAYLOR: Did you decide to work on your sequel or go with the inspiration of the moment that was for a new project?? Never heard you report back... Me, I have to go with prevailing inspiration...the sequel ideas will always be there waiting when nothing else is near my muse...

TINA: I meant to jump on your adverb question. Most of my writing life I've used adverbs (and adjectives) freely until I read WIlliam Zinsser's ON WRITING WELL. He says to CUT EVERYTHING UNNESSARY to the sense of the sentence. His stand on cutting redundancies, etc., makes you ponder your use of verbs and nouns so that if one word can suffice for two, use it. So, instead of "He spoke loudly" you use "He shouted." Man, my novel is so full of verbosity (is that a word?) it'll take me a couple lifetimes to redo it. But I'm determined! :-) Mr. Zinsser is inspiring! So, his opinion and mine say that before you use that adverb, doublecheck your verb - is there a better one to use instead of adding that adverb?

RACHEL: While I'm on the topic of old topics, :-), every time I cross a bridge I think of you and your bog--not the rats, just the water! I too am drawn to water - rivers, creeks, lakes, oceans...something about the current or flow nudges my muse every time, and I wish I could just find a grassy plot on the bank and scribble my stories in tranquility, able to view my inspirational source between every phrase or dangling modifier, heh heh! :-)

ELAINE: Did I ever say hi and welcome? Well, HI and WELCOME to the NB! :-)

ROSEMARY: I've been reviewing "TOADY" and boy, it needs a lot of work to be a successful children's book. Am trying to smooth and strengthen the rhymes...Got any new Spring visuals for me? :-)

TEEKAY: Get yourself a shiny new pen. You need a lift, methinks! :-) Report back on style and color, thank you very much (poor me, I haven't had a new pen in years, or at least centuries, it seems.)


I'd best get back to work. A GREAT BIG HI to everyone else too: JERRY, EDDIE, MARY, HEATHER, RHODA, HOWARD, CAROL, VIV, DEBRA, RANDALL (where the heck are you? Did Del Ray swallow you whole??!), MARK, ALLEIN, JACK, CHRISTI, AMERICO, PHILIP and all you other lurkers out there!!! Keep writing --- these library shelves are always looking for new tomes!!! :-)

End of mile-long epistle.

Mel 4-8-2002 14:22

Hello again everyone!
I've just caught up with the NB entries,(finally) and thought it was about time to write back.
Allein: No, I don't live in Germany, but I do take German 2 in highschool. I think I've got the hang of it pretty good, right now anyway. That will probably change over summer vacation. Just remind me not, (NOT) to throw away my notes for this year, otherwise I will be so lost when German 3 starts rolling around.
A warm welcome to ME! A name would be better, make one up even, I don't think they would mind. I wouldn't mind at all and a with a name we can identify you better! What kind of welcome am I writing!?! WELCOME WELCOME WELCOME!!!! I hope you feel welcome, I'm not usually like this, it's the first day back to school and a Monday besides with Daylight Savings Time the evening before..... and I'm exhausted (which makes me hyper, which gets my friends hyper, which) (well, you get my drift)
Happy Belated Birthday Litter! Sorry about missing it, (((HUGS)))!!! To everyone else, I'm kind of (just a little) having trouble writing. It must have been the vacation! LOL! You'd think with all the time in the world, I'd be able to write something at least but I've been drawing a blank piece of paper every time. At least the nonwriting strain doesn't effect my entries, right? (I pity the rest of you who have to read my long and tedious entries) I must be going soon, the bell's going to ring and I want lunch.
Till Niagara Falls!

Elaine 4-8-2002 12:31

Sorry, JERRY, but that was all true. Your Arab embargo memory is faulty. These clips are from http://webexhibits.org/daylightsaving/index.html>webexhibits.org

"Daylight Saving Time also saves energy. Studies done by the U.S. Department of Transportation show that Daylight Saving Time trims the entire country's electricity usage by a significant, but small amount, of less than one percent each day with Daylight Saving Time. We save energy in both the evening and the morning because we use less electricity for lighting and appliances. Similarly, In New Zealand, power companies have found that power usage decreases 3.5% when daylight saving starts. In the first week, peak evening consumption commonly drops around 5%."

"During the Arab-Israeli War in October 1973, Middle East members of OPEC issued an embargo against the sale of crude oil to Israel's Western allies. In the United States, gasoline became scarce and prices jumped 40 percent, crimping the American economy. Following the 1973 Arab Oil Embargo, Congress put most of the nation on extended Daylight Saving Time for two years in hopes of saving additional energy. This experiment worked, but Congress did not continue the experiment in 1975 because of opposition -- mostly from the farming states."

Mark 4-8-2002 9:20

Carol: Looks like you are rockin'! Bad pun! Looking forward to seeing what comes of that idea.

Jerry: I don't mean to gloat, but one of the nice things about living in Japan is that daylight savings does not exist here. We have rats, we have bats, we have roaches but we do not have daylight savings time!

Viv 4-8-2002 8:39

My daughter and son-in-law and grandson Stephen don't have daylight saving time where they live in Arizona. My wife has to remind me that it's now three hours' difference instead of two.

howard 4-7-2002 22:55

All well and good Mark, however I do recall a year back in I think it was the mid 70's, when the middle east decided that we didn't need all that oil, and there were long lines, miles long waiting for the scarce oil at nearly every gas station, when the Fed, in all it's power suspended daylight savings time to save fuel.

I know it was just a joke, but I thought I should put a bit of reality into the question.

Jerry Ericsson 4-7-2002 22:02

In the years of a century past, State after State voted on whether to adopt Daylight Savings Time. State Legislatures generally debated the merits of the proposition along Urban / Rural lines. For those who rose with the sun, switching the clocks seemed an unnecessary contrivance. In cities, however, the move was seen as a great conservation measure, helping reduce the need for fuel to light afternoon and evening activities.

With more votes in the cities and a clear fuel conservation benefit, the measure passed without much ado. Except in Indiana, where farmers gathered in granges and organized excursions to the capitol to argue en masse against Daylight Savings Time. "During this Summer," they argued, "an extra hour of daylight will burn our crops."

Mark 4-7-2002 19:58

TEEKAY -- Just don't stay away for long, please! After all, winter is coming along soon, and we need to know you're okay!

howard 4-7-2002 19:45

HEATHER -- Thanks, but Tina's was much better!

howard 4-7-2002 19:43


Ah, so my message did get through after all. It took so long to send that I ended up cancelling and trying again (2 more times) and still it went so slowly that I gave up before the message posted. I mean, before I thought it posted.

Anyhow, this is just to let you know that the spirit is still unwilling and my mood far from compromising, so, like my last post, my appearance here over the next while may be stuttery at best.

Be Well All.

Teekay 4-7-2002 19:34

Hello Me
It would be helpful if you would introduce yourself, then we could see who it is that we are helping out.
Welcome anyway Me

Eddie 4-7-2002 17:53

I have this ideas on my mind, and I totally love writing, specially, like, novels.
but then, when I start, I kinda get lost on the way.
or get bored, think it´s not so great or new after all, and give up, to start again after a couple of weeks.

me 4-7-2002 17:30

Hi All :)

Just a quick hello. Actually managed to keep my date with Viv this past week and wrote for almost an hour. She suggested a subject and I was able to run with it. hehehehe I sent her to the bathroom to get me my nail polish remover.

Yeah! It's raining today. Melt, snow, melt! Course then I'll have to cover the carpeting with sheets. The dogs will start tracking in mud. Oh well, this too shall pass.

Have a great day everyone.

Carol 4-7-2002 17:10

Greetings, y'all!

Heh heh, just wanted to say something with my newfound Southern accent. Love the twang!

Many pardons, I'm just in a strange mood.

Happy scribbles, friends!

Howard, that gag was ba-a-a-a-d!

Heather 4-7-2002 14:36

Jerry, YOU ARE NOT ALONE! Daylight saving is ridiculous. If 'they' decided to stop it, I don't know a single person who'd be disappointed. (sarcasm) I mean, in the winter it gets dark. Fewer hours of sun. Shorter days. It doesn't matter what time the clock says, there is still less sun. Doh! (/sarcasm)

- What does an origami club say to new members?
- Welcome to the fold!

Might sneak some writing time in today. Been working on work too much, need a break. Thought of a solution to a sticky spot in 'Freeborn'. :-D

Blue skies!

Tina 4-7-2002 12:07

JERRY -- don't be bashful or wishy-washy, don't hold back your opinion, tell us what you really think. :-)

howard 4-7-2002 8:16

Long day filled with family, memories and reports on old friends. Not a single card passed through my hands, unusual for a gathering at moms, but my sister will only be here this weekend, in fact they will leave tomorrow afternoon, so we visited then left so others could have a chance to visit also.

I am beat, worn out completely. I am off to bed, must turn forward the STUPID clocks before I retire. That fellow who figured out the daylight savings time should be horse whipped, then castrated as an idiot like that should never be allowed to reproduce.

Write on.

Jerry Ericsson 4-7-2002 1:07

Q: What has 19 legs and 27 teeth?

A: The front row at a Willie Nelson concert

4-6-2002 21:33

I see that you don't do much for laughsend.com anymore.
Have another look at it, things have changed recently. The writers have much more of a community established there now. Check out the forum.

Eddie Laughsend 4-6-2002 17:34

Q: What's the best thing to ever come out of Arkansas?

A: I-40.

4-6-2002 17:26

*rolleyes* @ Howard's pun

4-6-2002 15:20

cough, gag Howard's... pun... urghhh

4-6-2002 14:20

HEATHER -- Actually that needs a space between the n and the c in 'increasing'.
Origami is in creasing...

howard 4-6-2002 13:46

Heather - Actually, the piece about the cranes is part of a bigger story I was writing. :) I've since given up on it, but put parts of it into another story.

Allein Peachick's Gallery 4-6-2002 13:23

Howard - not quite sure what you meant by 'increasing', unless you mean 'in popularity'. I've loved Origami since I was young, and made some interesting pieces with my best friend. I just ordered a big book on Origami for the kids, with piles of beautiful paper for folding included, from Scholastic. The house is going to be overpopulated, I can see it now.

Heather 4-6-2002 13:02


Serendipity is just God's way of saying 'You're Welcome'.


Heather 4-6-2002 12:59

I think we're gonna have a barbeque shortly! I went out to the freezer in the barn to get out some hamburger for next week, and found that the freezer has quit, and the beef we had left is almost completely thawed out. Still good, but I don't dare re-freeze it. There's only about 50-60 lbs -- about 20 lbs of ground beef and the rest in roasts and steaks, but we can't eat it all. I called up a couple of families I know, and asked if they could use some, and one man almost cried, because they didn't have enough to buy groceries this week. I know there's a reason for everything, but it still amazes me just how good God is!

HEATHER -- I've said it before -- I'll say it again -- Origami is increasing!
JERRY - and others interested in what's inside: check http://www.aumha.org/
for a pretty decent Windows support page. Looks like lots of stuff there.
No update on Joel yet -- we're still praying.

howard 4-6-2002 10:46

Mark - HA HA AHAHA!!!!! I think Wayne would like that visual, too! ;oD

Heather 4-6-2002 9:54

Allein - GOOD! I'm glad you're not bored with the characters. It just seemed that way. I've noticed that you mention you're 'too lazy to invent new characters' whenever you post a shortie. Thought that might have been a factor - glad it isn't just boredom.

And by the way, Allein - I really think that the story of the Origami cranes could be expanded into a really great, longer piece. Best shortie you've posted in a while!

Heather 4-6-2002 9:49

Heather - I'm not bored with my characters, actually, I did come up with a new one when I attended the writer's convention last August, perhaps I'll use her in my next shortie.

Allein Peachick's Gallery 4-6-2002 2:20

Teekay, your going to have to cut back on the vacation, seems you have developed quite a stutter there.

I have a start on my shorty for this week, but because of my recent computer rebuild, I haven't gotten back to finish it. Now my sister and her family, the one who still lives up north in the town where I used to police has come for a visit, and I must get some visiting done while they are here. They are full of news of our old friends and neighbors up there, as well as catching up on how her three sons are doing. All three are married with children, much like Al Bundy. Well two of them are sort of like that, only not exactly.

These are the boys who used to sit on my knee while I told tales of hunters lost in the woods, tales of creatures from the dark damp sub-universe that parallels our very own. The boys who really jump started my imagination all by climbing up on my lap and asking me to tell them a story.

I do miss those boys, all men now. It is good to hear that they are doing well in their lives, progressing in their chosen professions. My brother-in-law who looked so very ill last time they were done, with his diabetes has rallied, gained some weight and looks like himself again. My sister is trying to stop smoking, again. We are encouraging her, my eldest sister who lives here in town recently kicked the habit, so with the two of us X-smokers working on her, she is sure to succeed, well I sure hope she does. She already has that nagging cough that all smokers seem to get.

Well must be off to bed, it looks to be a busy day tomorrow with visiting and cards.

My niece will be down too, the one who had the little baby who shares my middle name. Always great to visit with them too.

Jerry Ericsson 4-6-2002 1:11

Hi All;
Am happy to report that I'm not dead, just feeling decidedly dull witted just at the moment.

Be well all.


Teekay 4-6-2002 0:26

Hi All;
Am happy to report that I'm not dead, just feeling decidedly dull witted just at the moment.

Be well all.


Teekay 4-6-2002 0:25

Hi All;
Am happy to report that I'm not dead, just feeling decidedly dull witted just at the moment.

Be well all.


Teekay 4-6-2002 0:22

HEATHER -- I was being literal there. "Getting all incensed," as, like, having his body all rubbed with fragrant powders and oils.

hoooooo The visuals I get when people say "He got all fired up."

I once had a case of beer in small, clear glass bottles that got too much sunshine and developed a skunky smell. I knew what it was to have a bad case of beer. However, when I heard a man say he, "got a bad case of red ass," well, I was speechless.

Mark 4-5-2002 23:14

Allein - the difficulty in your story is fundamentally simple: Show rather than tell. Also, make up some new characters for a change. It reads as if you're bored with the current characters, even if you don't think you are.
(And that happens whether we like it or not!)
Sorry to crit here, I haven't much time to send an email and all of that...

I really enjoyed your shortie from last week - it had less 'telling' in comparison to this week's.

Heather 4-5-2002 22:02

Hey, Mark - is there supposed to be another spelling of incense to use in that instance? If there is, tell me, tell me! Or were you simply pokin' fun?


Yeah, one of these days I might part with a story, but until then you can relax and enjoy the fact that you don't have any editing to do! ;o]

Heather 4-5-2002 21:59

P.S. Howard - I get the feeling that Joel's going to be one of those sporty guys that just keeps getting back into the play, even after some intense trampling. :o>

Heather 4-5-2002 21:58

Howard - I am sending out more prayers for little Joel. ((HUGS))

Heather 4-5-2002 21:56

Joel was doing better, but now has breathing difficulties -- bronchialitis (not bronchitis) -- and has to be on a nebulizer every four hours. If he's not better by Monday they'll hospitalize him for a few days and put him in an oxygen tent. At least he's gained some weight and seems to be getting over the first hurdles he faced.

howard 4-5-2002 21:21

Litter - Happy belated B-day to you (hugs).

Rachel 4-5-2002 14:33

I'm posting the first part of the story here since it does deal with this week's theme and I hardly ever post shorties. This is actually the part I'm really looking for help with but I wouldn't mind help with some of the other parts.

Ok, on their planet, they obviously have their own religion, the Christian missionaries have moved in and are spreading Christianity, Rean was converted from the old religion. These men obviously don't know him or who he is, but they know he's Christian and they don't like it (as a lot of people don't on this planet). Consider it like being Jewish and growing up in a neighborhood of Nazis.

Of course Rean is a character from Mali and Azol since I'm too lazy to make up a new one.

The version of the 23rd psalm used here was taken from my Bible - infact both have different versions, so I just used one.


“Hey come back here!”

Rean ran along the empty street trying to get away from the three men chasing him. He didn’t even know what he’d done to upset them. He’d noticed them following him from the church after he’d left the Easter dance.

He skidded to a stop and then darted down a dark alley. As he looked back he ran straight into a brick wall. No! He thought as he heard the guys behind him laughing. I’m trapped. Why did I go down this way?

Two men grabbed him as the third tore the Bible from his hands. “I’m so sick of your kind! You think you’ll change us – the Gloobakian religion has been around on this planet much longer than the Christians.” He threw the Bible against the wall – pages of it flew into the air and scattered around the alley.

Rean looked up at him. “I haven’t done anything to…”

The man kicked him in the face. “Shut up! I hate you! All of you! Going around preaching your Bible and taking people away from the true faith!” He struck Rean and then picked up one of the pages. “‘A time to be born and a time to die,’” he read and then grinned wickedly. “I think your time has come.”

Rean pleaded for their mercy, but they ignored him. He was thrown to the ground and kicked repeatedly. He thought he felt something being thrown at him – stones perhaps? He had his eyes shut tightly so he couldn’t see and even if they were open, it was late at night.

Opening his eyes he knew his only chance was to run. He tried standing but one of the men held him.

“Looks like you just won’t give up!” The ringleader spat at him.

Rean was expecting more beatings – punching, kicking, but never did he expect to see the gleam of a knife coming down towards him. He felt it slice into him – hot, piercing pain. He tried to free his arms from the other man’s strong grip but was unable. The strikes came fast he hardly had time to let out any sound, much less the tortured scream that remained caught in his throat. Finally he was dropped to the ground.

He could see the men walk off – they were leaving him. Their motions, the sound of their voices were so casual.
Cautiously touching his stomach he could feel something warm and sticky flowing over his hand. Tears found their way out of his eyes. So this was it…this was how he was to die?

I can’t die tonight! His mind cried out. I have school tomorrow! I have to grow up! I have to get married and have children!

He could feel the warm liquid seeping through his clothes. He was lying in a puddle – the light from the moon shone off of it enough for him to see – it was red, as he’d suspected.

I haven’t told my mother I love her today!

He moved against the pavement trying to get up – it was useless. He thought he was drowning – in his own blood perhaps? He didn’t know.

Please! I’m only fourteen! I can’t die tonight! Not tonight!

It may have been minutes or hours later that he heard voices.

“What’s that?”

“Oh my…”

“Is he alive?”

He felt someone take his hand and stroke his hair. He drew in a raspy breath. Life seemed to be escaping him fast.
“He is alive!” A man’s voice shouted. “Call an ambulance.”
Rean struggled to say something, anything. There was so much he wanted to say. He couldn’t, he was too tired. He felt something being pressed against his chest.

The voice came again. “Come on, stay with me.”

I can’t…he thought.

He heard the rustling of paper and the same voice. “‘The Lord is my shepherd, I have everything I need, He lets me rest in fields of green grass, and leads me to quiet pools of fresh water. He gives me new strength. He guides me in the right paths, as He has promised. Even if I go through the deepest darkness, I will not be afraid, Lord, for You are with me.’”

Rean sighed as his body relaxed. The twenty-third Psalm, he thought. It always comforts me.

“No, don’t leave! Come on, kid! I can hear the sirens! You can’t go now!”

Rean heard the sirens too – he didn’t care. Light seemed to find it’s way from somewhere behind his eyes.

He felt the grip on his hand tighten. “Not now!”

He heard shouting. His grip on the other hand went limp. Other voices now…helping him.

The last words of the psalm echoed in his head: “I will not be afraid, Lord, for You are with me.” He wasn’t afraid. He thought he felt himself floating…the light took over…his body relaxed…the pain was gone…the light filled him with joy…and he wasn’t afraid.

Allein Peachick's Gallery 4-5-2002 3:24


Look Right: Shortie theme

I stood on the side of the road, further down to my right was a fork in the road. To my left there was no oncoming traffic, so I took a couple of steps forward. For a split second a white flash filled my vision.
Before I knew it I was flat on my back staring blankly to the sky. My back and legs were in great pain, causing me to fade in and out of consciousness. Sirens in the distance drew near. The blue sky swirled and blended with the colour white.
I could hear Footsteps approaching at a jogging pace. The sirens had stopped but I could see the red and blue lights reflecting off the whiteness.

My mind turned over by itsel as I stared blankly to the whiteness. Thinking about what things gone by and ultimately of what the future may have had in store for me. The pain was beginning to ease up, I was no longer feeling anything.

I have said I would do many things, but had never carried it through, and what the future held looked disappointing... Goals untouched, heights unreached and destinies unfulfilled... Just too many things undone.

"We're losing him, we're losing him." A distant frantic voice yelled, with an almost echoing effect.
Within the frame of my vision I could see men kneeling beside me forcing an Oxygen mask over my nose and mouth.

I knew I had things to do. Of all the experiences I have read about over the years, I've heard of people in this situation thinking about what they would do differently.
'Oh yes for starters, I would look to my right again' Remembering that I looked to the left, but not the right again. That I only looked in one direction really.

"Hang in there" The voice echoed again. Was it my imagination or was the voice getting further away? It was almost in a different time.

Yes I would have done somethings differently, but I cant now, its too late. If given a choice I will become a doer. I will look at things both ways. I will reach my goals.

The mask disappeared from my face. Was it taken off? I couldn't hear anything. Slowly my eyes closed.
Blackness. Was I dead? Was I unconscious?
Blackness was replaced by bluesky, I was now standing on the road once again, my right foot was in the air, I was about to continue crossing. Quickly, I took a couple of steps back, almost slipping. I got to the side of the road just in time to see a white car speed past where I just was.
After I gave my heart the chance to slow down to normal, I looked both ways twice before crossing the road and continued on.

Taylor 4-5-2002 1:59

Happy Birthday Litter - I'd sing you a birthday song in English, but I doubt you could understand our version. (just kidding, you know how it is here in the colonies).

The weatherman tells us that we have seen the last below zero night last night. I hope he is right, but somehow I just don't trust him very far anymore.

Oh Spring where have you hidden. I have this urge to go get my little garden tractor/mower and begin yard maintance, yet it's just too cold to put the battery in as of yet. They have a tendency to freeze when not at a full charge, and a frozen battery is a ruined battery. The acid/water expands and crushes the lead plates breaking them and shorting out the whole system.

Jerry Ericsson 4-5-2002 0:34


Nightmare at Eleven

'Shhishh tuush shhishh tushh'
What is that noise? Sounds like Darth Vader! Or Dark Vader!
'Shhishh tuush shhishh tushh'
Nice rhythm, but what is it?
Hey! Anyone! What the heck is going on? Where's the lights in this place?
'Shhishh tuush shhishh tushh'
What is this place, anyway?
Yoohoo - anybody home?
'Shhishh tuush shhishh tushh'
Okay, enough with the fun and games!
Gimme a break! It's not funny any more!
'Shhishh tuush shhishh tushh'
Oh 'Shhishh tuush shhishh tushh' yourself! Would you please stop that and turn on a light or something?
And turn up the heat while you're at it - I'm freezing!
'Shhishh tuush shhishh tushh'
Damn! That sounds familiar, somehow. And not Darth Vader familiar either.
What is this place, anyway? Why's it so cold? Will someone please put another blanket over me?
'Shhishh tuush shhishh tushh'
Wait - another blanket? Someone? Why do I need someone to do for me anyway? I can get it myself!
No,,, no I can't. Can't even move. Why can't I move?
'Shhishh tuush shhishh'
Huh? Whassat?
'Shhishh tuush'
Who's there? Hello?
Now what? Why is it all of a sudden quiet in here? What happened to the noise? I was really getting into the rhythm of it.
Now it's gone.
Oh no! Not now!
Not yet!
I wasn't re…

howard 4-5-2002 0:25

Elaine - I speak German. :D Do you live in Germany?

I'm writing a story that I need help with and was wondering if anyone would critique it - it's a short story about a character of mine who gets attacked (similar to one I posted here a few years back) and I need help not only with the emotional aspects but putting some bulk into describing the physical attack. If anyone's willing to critique with some constructive critisism I'll e-mail the story.

Jack - Good job on the weight loss. Keep it up! :D

Allein Peachick's Gallery 4-4-2002 22:59

I should add that this works out to about 1200 to 1400 calories consumed and generally I am finishing the day with 900 to 1400 calories under what is required to maintain my existing weight. Each week I weigh in and I tallie the calories for and against similar to filling in a check book. Guess that is all.

4-4-2002 22:50

Make that 32 pounds. Christi, I am assuming you are referring to the diet. It is not rocket science. Group Health, our health cooperative has a program that has you on five or more meal replacements which may include vanilla, chocolate or chicken soup powder, several meal entres aka tv dinners with limited calories or a yummy little benefit bar that has peanut butter in it. On top of this add three vegetables and two fruit servings. And finally, to top it all off, I am doing two thirty minute sessions with the treadmill or diving which means I am doing anywhere from 175 to 1100 calorie burning exercise per day. All of this is adding up to about 3 to 5 pounds lost per week with a sizable chunk lost in the first week (in my case nine pounds). Perhaps most indicative is that my resting heart rate has gone from 76 beats per minute to 52 beats per minute and I can walk out of the surf with all of my gear and walk to the car rather than crawl out gasping and desperately pawing at my weight pockets to get the weight off of my back. The exercise is proving a bit addictive. I now know what they mean by endorphine highs. Also, after seeing my cholesterol test at the beginning of this, that is an additional incentive to stay on the straight and narrow. Take care and hope I am answering the right question.

Jack 4-4-2002 22:31


Man, my post was latent with errors/omitted words. I just wanted to know how long I'd be allowed to type in this little box. Apparantly forever! Woe to the rest of you. Haw haw haw. Sorry about the crappy post. Teekay, you owe me mail girl, so don't stay away too long this time. See yers! Christi 4-4-2002 22:10

Hi guys!
I know I haven't been on in a while, it's been a busy vacation so far. I was just able to get back to the NB today and I found out that it's been updated and the NB has had another birthday.
I could sing the birthday song in German but I don't know if all the rest of you who can't speak it would understand it that well so.... we'll just save it for another time.
Happy birthday to anybody else and welcome Philip! I thought I heard a new voice come out through all the chatter! Well my parents are calling again to get off the lousy computer and the rest of the kids are watching a DVD that I haven't watched yet(amazingly enough) so this is just a little post from me,
Till Niagara Falls!

Elaine 4-4-2002 20:19

Jack, How'd you do it? I'm dying to know.

Christi 4-4-2002 20:06


Jack, I didn't even notice you'd written 8 instead of 6! How funny--off I went making this big deal about the number six, almost as if I were lecturing! HEE! :D

Happy belated birthday, Litterali!!!!!!!!!!!!! I wish for many many happy days ahead of you.

Howard, I'm so jealous. I've only seen FOLR once! I want to go again soooooo badly, but I only let my mom babysit and she's not available all that often. Thanks for the DVD release info! Can't wait!

Ummm, is Teekay MIA again? :) I know how she feels. Seems I've been writing and editing and submitting like crazy, and have been finding keeping up with the tough! Not that those who do aren't writing. And blah blah blah, in my mouth goes the old foot. It's comfortable there. You guys know what I mean.

Love and smooches,

Christi 4-4-2002 20:03

Hi All :)

Another gray, cold day. Howard, I live in one of Wisconsin's northern counties. We're just close enough to the lake yet where we get the southern edge of lake-effect snows. In fact, they said there would be a chance of flurries tonight. But, on the up side -- Friday will be in the higher 30's. Then on Sunday, it may hit 50 with rain showers. That should take care of the rest of the snow very nicely.

Litter -- Happy Belated Birthday!

Jack -- Congratulations on the weight loss! Thirty one pounds is remarkable!

Heather -- thanks :)

Rhoda - I too have printer woes. I bought a new one only to discover I'll now have to update my hardware to OS X. From what little I've heard, I'm not going to enjoy the experience. I can print to some extent at least. I just have to "crash" the computer to shut it off every night.

Not much else new here. I think it's time for another pot of coffee to wake up my brain cells.

Carol 4-4-2002 19:39


Welcome back to the Notebook. I too hope you will stay for a time. I am excited about your new American release and hope to get a copy of it soon.


I haven't been around too much because I have been experiencing the "My printer has broken down on the computer I did my taxes" blues. This computer is five or six years old and I have already had to take back two new printers thanks to compatablity problems. What a mess.

Nothing is ever simple when it comes to new hardware. Even cables require drivers you don't happen to have.

I'll return when I get a life again. Meanwhile, its back to Best Buy.

Rhoda 4-4-2002 15:19

JACK -- Happy Birthday to the Notebook and thanks for all of it.

LITTER -- Terrific poems. Happy Birthday.

HEATHER -- Wayne "gets all incensed"? Now I know we could make something of that phrase.

HOWARD -- Good luck in your quest for returnable cans.

i return now to the land of the lurkers

Mark 4-4-2002 9:12

TINA -- And others anxiously awaiting the LOTR DVDs -- I just found this news release:(dunno why the "R" rating, unless it's for violence)
New Line Home Entertainment will release three DVDs of The Lord of the Rings: The Fellowship of the Ring. On August 6, the theatrical version will be available in a 2 disc special edition. Then, on November 12, an R-rated extended cut incorporating 30 minutes of material back into the film, will be available in a four disc set - two discs for the film and two more for extra features. Finally, a collector's boxed set will be available for the extended cut, including all four discs, the National Geographic Lord of the Rings special and extra features for that documentary.

The full article is at:


I'm saving my bottle and can refunds! :-)

howard 4-4-2002 7:13

I found a used motherboard on Ebay, with processor and ordered it using a bit of my gun proceeds. It came in today, so I have spent the day playing musical computer parts. Took the memory and hard drive from one, video card from another, network card from the back room and put it all together. I now have an Athlon 1gig computer. The fellow selling it on ebay said it was a Duron, but when it came and I scrapped off all the burned on gel, it said Athlon. Windows says it's an athlon too, so guess I got a better deal then I thought I was going to.

It sure is a lot faster then my old 400 Mhz that I have been using for the past couple of years. Just got everything up and working. I'm as happy as a kid with a new toy! Oh the joy of the upgrade, even if it is used and last years barn burner.

Now all that is left to do is doing a brain transplant on the wife's computer, I have a 500 Mhz processor left over from the old computer that served as an internet connection for all this time. The motherboard was getting very bad, it was burning out memory, and failed to start so many times I lost count. It is going in the trash, I wouldn't even try and sell something like that on Ebay. Well the though did cross my mind, but having been on the buyer end of a junk auction, I know the feeling of putting together a system with a board claimed to be guaranteed as not DOA. That means it will start but not guaranteed to work any length of time, or even work right.

Jerry Ericsson 4-4-2002 0:46

Hi all!

Litter, happy belated birthday!

Howard, I'm green with envy. LOTR SIX times! I really wish. About the DVD, I heard (a fairly reliable rumour) that the DVD version is uncut and almost 5 hours long. Everything is in there, including the car (hehe I have to watch for that one)

Hello Philip! Are you gonna stay awhile?

Spring has sprung here. I cleaned out the garden today, and tomorrow I'm taking out a pesky apple tree. It was planted in a bad spot by the previous owners, always has bugs, and to boot, the apples don't taste that good. Still, I'm sad to cut it down. :-(

Although I have tonnes of stuff to do, I made today a writing day. Feels so good. I finished reading 'On Writing' by Stephen King. A great read, with some interesting ideas. It reminded me (again) that I spend too much time worrying over the first draft. I still don't agree with him about those adverbs, though.

Blue skies!

Tina 4-3-2002 23:37


I've been here for 4 out of the 6 years and it's been wonderful. Even though sometimes I seem to take a long hiatis, I always come crawling back. :)

I have a short story that kind of has to do with a near death experience. I might post it tomorrow.


Allein Peachick's Gallery 4-3-2002 21:47

Howard - that's the same Max Lucado book I bought Wayne~! He's read the first part, and really liked it, but the book is about UNcluttering your life, and he seems to attract clutter wherever he goes - I think he's just not ready for the book yet! If he doesn't finish it in the next month, I'm going to read it myself.
(If he's got a bookmark in a book, and I go and pick it up and start reading it, he gets all incensed, even if he hasn't touched the book in ages!)

I also bought a Max Lucado book for the kids. Can't remember the title right now, though. It was about the man and the children, and one boy who strayed outside the stone wall around the town. Think I'll have to refresh my memory by reading it again!

Carol - glad to see you back more often!

Toodles, everyone,

Heather 4-3-2002 21:31

Hello all: Have been absolutely swamped which is seeming to becoming an ongoing condition. Philip: yes, you were among the first, as was Tobias. Others who were here early included Britomart aka Kim Wilkins. At any rate, I am off to eat something and head out to a diving meeting. BTW, I am now up to 31 pounds lost in seven weeks. At some point I will post before and after photos :-) Clothed, of course ;-).

Jack Beslanwitch 4-3-2002 20:53

Hi people!

Thanks for all the positive comments on my recent poetic offerings. They are much appreciated.

HAPPY BIRTHDAY NOTEBOOK! ‘Twas mine also – passed with little fuss but some excellent books from my family.

Writing is, for the most part, a solitary business. Considering the plethora of agonisingly awful writer’s mailing lists on the WWW, is has been a pleasure and a privilege to return often to THIS Writers Notebook, being that it is several cuts above the others. It is an inviting place to linger or lurk, visiting like-minded people for encouragement, information and/or constructive criticism, or just to chat a while. Jack, you are to be commended for providing and hosting it, and for all the work you have done over the years.

MARY – About ‘Who Left Grandad…’ If you still have trouble getting it I do not mind getting it here and sending it across. Money transfer for such a lowly amount is disproportionately difficult, so I was thinking more of a favour to be returned at some undetermined time in the future. (So long as you don’t have a problem in hacking off a horse’s head and sticking it in someone’s bed?)

OYSTER – The ‘Dark Isle’ poem is entirely original, written for my father. The imagery, however, has been around for some 1600 years, perhaps even longer. It is a very evocative image (and tune) for us Scots. It was, incidentally, the Bagpipe Lament played for the Queen Mother when they took her body back to St. James’s Palace yesterday. It stirs me to the core every time I hear it and hopefully will be played at my funeral. (Which is, even more hopefully, not for some time yet.)

I may have missed some comments or entries between my last visit and the previous instalment of the Notebook being archived. If I have left anything unanswered please accept my apologies and feel free to ask again.

PHILIP McLAREN – Good to see you here. ‘McLaren’ – such a noble name – World class Grand Prix cars, (although you might not have noticed after the first three Grand Prix’s of the new season) staggeringly fast road cars, elegant baby buggies and, oh yes, me! You live 12,000 miles from your ancestral roots and I live only 1.5 hours drive away…

On the question of Lapidary Drills – I think you’ll find that such devices have existed since the Stone Age. One way or another mankind has been drilling holes in things for millennia. I have seen experimental archaeologists using stone tipped wooden drills with a little sand and water and very effectively drilling through stone of differing kinds. Soap Stone is used a great deal in Africa, as with the Native Americans use of ‘Thirsty Stone’ and the like.

This week’s Poetic form for use in conjunction with shortie night, for those who wish to exercise their poetic abilities (or even lack thereof) is the ‘Ottava Rima’.

The ‘Ottava Rima’ is descibed, by ‘Stanzas’ web site, thusly:

Ottava Rima rhymes abababcc, and numerous medieval and Renaissance Italian poems were composed in this stanza pattern. Notable are the long narratives of Bocaccio, such as the Filostrato, the source for Chaucer's Troilus and Criseyde. In English, the name implies an iambic pentameter poem in that form. It has served numerous purposes, from Byron's cynically witty Don Juan to the stylistically magnificent later poems of W. B. Yeats.

Example –

That is no country for old men. The young
In one another's arms, birds in the trees
---Those dying generations---at their song,
The salmon-falls, the mackerel-crowded seas,
Fish, flesh, or fowl commend all summer long
Whatever is begotten, born, and dies.
Caught in that sensual music all neglect
Monuments of unaging intellect.
--W. B. Yeats

Ciao for now,

Litter 4-3-2002 19:46

CAROL -- Where do you live, that you still have three feet of snow on your garden?!? We haven't had three feet of snow all year, and things are really dry. I may cut back on the garden, and plant only what I can keep watered. But then I could put a tank in the back of MY! pickup, and haul water from the spring down the road.

I had to sit through FOTR again (6th time) this afternoon. My mother wanted to see it, so I took her. Now she's counting the days until the Two Towers. This was the last showing for our local theatre, but the DVD is due out in a couple of months. I finally spotted the car in the background of the scarecrow scene. Dunno how they could have missed it in editing.

I also finished reading the trilogy again (9th time - can you tell I'm a JRRT freak?) and started on Charles Baxter's "The Love Feast." It's very good -- he writes very vividly. Also reading "Travelling Light," by Max Lucado, another really good book by him, and just got "The Death of the West" by Patrick J Buchanan. Great book for us conservatives!

Gotta go work on a poem, and on a shorty.
HEATHER -- was it you who got your hubby a Lucado book for Christmas? How'd he like it?

howard 4-3-2002 18:55

Hi All :)

Cold, cold weather. The one thing I really need to finish banishing this winter depression is the feel of earth between my toes and under my nails. Methinks it'll be a while yet. The snows still a good three feet deep in the garden. There still aren't any bare patches even in the driveway!

Viv -- how about we wait one more week? You've got a lot on your plate for this weekend and I'm still struggling just to do journal entries at the moment. Send the pictures on anyways. And if I do come up with something, I'll pass it along. Scratch that -- maybe we should try to force ourself? There is this weeks shortie theme to consider. :)

Actually I did write for an hour today. I got an email from my favorite ex-sister-in-law, she's been off-line for six months or more. She's such a sweetie. I do love relationships where it doesn't matter how long you haven't talked to one another, you just pick up where you left off and keep on agoing. She loved getting all the news about the family and I love hearing about my nephew. It just makes me feel old when she talks about him graduating next spring. Yikes!

Happy day all.

Carol 4-3-2002 18:31

Hey, Howard, can I buy some spare truck parts? Ha ha, just kidding.

Hello everyone, and Happy Birthday, Notebook!

Still mulling a scene around in my brain pan, and haven't committed it to paper yet. Spank me, (one at a time please!) and get my butt back into gear, won'tcha?
I've stalled out!

Well, I am proud to say that I won the auction for Mary's stunningly beautiful Briana bracelet! I am super-thrilled with it, and have only taken it off to go to work and to sleep. If I knew I could wear it in my sleep and not do any damage, I'd be dreaming with it under my cheek!
FAB-U-LOUS! Anyone in need of some beauty in your days? Visit Mary's website and order something. There is no such thing as disappointed with Mary's jewelry.
And I will shamelessly continue to say so!


Ok... this week I am going to get at least two more short stories edited and sent back to the authors for the Phantasium collection. That should get me in the headspace for writing, too. I was in the mood to really write - I know the 'feel' of a thousand-word frenzy, and this one was more like double that - but I was at work, with gloves on and at least an hour's worth of work left to do. It was also 1 am.

So... all my excuses lay before you,

all are merely that - excuses.

Back on my head, soon

Heather 4-3-2002 17:35

WOW! I just got a letter saying my truck is now paid for! I wonder how long it'll last now?

howard 4-3-2002 16:42

that's "on the Down side" not sown side. Tee many tupograficla errors lately - must be getting old...

howard 4-3-2002 10:40

Yes, spring is definitely near! I checked my garden, and have garlic up about 3-4 inches high, and a row of Swiss chard that I covered with leaves last fall is growing nicely, and I should be able to pick some in a week or so.
But on the sown side, my faithful tiller (a 1963 Troy-bilt) has a seized engine, and I'll have to rebuild or replace it soon.
Oh joy!
Oh frabjous day!

yeeHAW anyhow!

howard 4-3-2002 10:38

If you used Kazaa, or know anyone who does, check this link to MSN -- something about planting software in the downloaded files to set up a P2P network. At first I thought it might be an April Fools joke, but it was published 4/2, and comes from MSN and ZDnet. Here's the link:


howard 4-3-2002 10:33

The next time I have a bad day, I will read this little article, and consider myself lucky to have a home. This from a news letter that I subscribe to:

OMAHA, NB - Sleeping in a garbage dumpster proved not to be
a good idea for a Nebraska man Monday. 28-year-old Keith
Quick was hospitalized after the dumpster he was sleeping in was emptied into a garbage truck and was compacted several times. According to Omaha Fire Department spokesman Craig Schneider, it was not until several stops and several loads of trash later that the truck driver heard Quick calling for help. By that time he had been compacted "two or three times." Schneider went on to say that it took fire fighters about an hour to dig the man out from the tightly compressed refuse packed into the hopper of the garbage truck. Miraculously he was not seriously injured.

It is a brilliantly sunny day here too, however the temperature is 2 degrees above zero. SPRING PLEASE START!

The weatherman says Spring will arrive on next Tuesday when temperatures will find the sixty degree mark. There was a yellow verio at our bird feeder this morning. I have never seen one this early, so spring should be here soon. Two robins were in the back yard when I got up, boy did they look confused.

Write on.

Jerry Ericsson 4-3-2002 10:22

Hi all - what a sunny day! It is beautiful. I think it has been much too long since a day like this has greeted me. Yesterday afternoon I had hopes that the next day would dawn bright and clear. I even went out and bought a pair of sunglasses. Oh yeah, I'm ready for the sun (big, wide smiles).

I think spring has sprung. I however am not about to put in a garden just yet. I put one in early last year and then we had a killing frost. I lost everything. I was quite ticked off about that. I never really did replant.

Hugs all around.

Rachel 4-3-2002 10:14

Happy Birthday Notebook. I'm happy to be here.

Debra 4-3-2002 7:58

That should be "check the VIEW JOBS" link at the top left of the page. There are several interesting entries there.

howard 4-3-2002 7:22

VIV -- Welcome back yourself! We missed you!

ALL -- I just rediscovered a website for telecommuting writers. They post jobs available for writers who want to work from home. If you're interested, it's


Check the "job posts" heading at the top left of the index page. There are several interesting positions available there.

howard 4-2-2002 21:52

Carol: Welcome back! I agree with you completely on taking drugs for depression. I think depressions are like colds, you get them sometimes. I think if you take too many drugs maybe you will stop your body from creating the chemicals you need to combat the depression in the first place. I learned that by watching my husband's research in grad school. Lots of brain scan pictures of before and after. Scary stuff.

Think you are up to an artist's date this Friday/Sat/ Sun? I am a little scared to offer because I have a 10:00 interview and a 4:30 dental appointment Friday, Sat I'm heading down to the fish market at 4:30 AM for the ingredients for boullibase but if I'm too whipped I'll just send you pictures of Tsukiji and we can brainstorm which would be best for a non-fiction article. Maybe you could think of a story to go with the place. It seems a great spot for a murder because everyone is walking around with spikes for stabbing the frozen fish, long knives, and there are all these little fork lifts wizzing here and there. It's a great place to be impaled. (Hope I managed to spell that right because I'm too lazy to check!)

Back to work. I have class notes, an article on the Red Cross, and a bunch of powerpoint slides to make for channel 12. (Information channel) I'm doing a little volunteer work for the Red Cross since I'm on vacation until the 12th. I got bored so I offered to do their publicity.

Hey Everyone in Places that Celebrate Daylight Savings...It's BACK! On the 7th of April Daylight savings begins. One reason I'm so happy to live here, we don't have this. Whew! Nothing like an excuse to mess up the entire population's sleep cycle. People are messed up enough by the change between winter and spring without added stimuli.

Back under...Viv

Viv 4-2-2002 21:36

Happy Birthday Notebook!

Well done Jack ... I looked back, I was there in year one and posted this:

Philip mclaren@magna.com.au Thu Sep 5 00:44:55 PDT 1996

I'm an Australian writer here at Trish's kind invitation (she rescued me from the horror of the newsgroups). I'll
eaves drop and learn before I jump in. Everyone here appears to be very polite.

Philip Link 4-2-2002 19:50

HAPPY BIRTHDAY NOTEBOOK! I don't think I would be writing at all if it weren't for the notebook. Before I found this place about all the writing I did were on a couple of online writing courses that I took. They were fun, but this place brings out the best in my writing.

I miss Randall too, COME BACK HOME RANDALL!

I know the feeling of the winter blues, we got snowed on yesterday, thankfully it started after our son got home. Got an inch of the white crap pushed by 50 mile per hour winds. Not enough to make too big a mess, but the high today was only 17%.


Fed my birds twice yesterday, they've been through nearly five gallons of bird seed. I think they were getting ready for spring too, and this cold spell has sent them for a loop. Hope they survive. Even had some gold fiches here today, they looked so cold. Looks like my feeders are over half empty already, and I just filled all six of them this morning.

My daughter said that there is a flock of huge crows at the group home she supervises. She thinks they may be ravens, but not many ravens have been sighted around here. Who knows it could be, maybe the weather has them confused too. I know when we drove past the lake last week, there was a large slice of open water between the ice patches, it was completely lined with geese, thousands of them. I think that's one reason I like this part of the country so much, the wildlife is always so plentiful.

I think my luck may be changing a bit. If it's any indicator, I got a letter from the IRS. Now the way things have been going of late, I nearly tore the damn thing up and tossed it in the garbage, but I opened it anyhow.

Seems we mis-figured our taxes this year, we made a one hundred dollar error in the IRS's favor, and they are going to increase our tax refund by that amount. Only catch is that it will take another six weeks before it is mailed to us.

I guess it's worth a hundred bucks to wait the six weeks, but we could sure use it. Our ice maker went bad a couple of weeks ago, the fridge is only two years old, but it isn't covered by warrantee, so it will cost us 80 bucks to replace it. They had to order the part of course, and since we purchased it from the dealer here in town, he is giving it to us at his cost, and covering the labor for nothing.

Hope everyone is well after the great chocolate binge that is normal for the Easter season with the chocolate eggs, bunnies and such. I got an Easter basket from the wife just over running with chocolate stuff, but decided it would be wise to ration it out. My daughter came over yesterday and today, her basket went empty, and now so did mine. Kids, you gotta love em. Not to worry, she did leave me the bunny. I think I will save that for Dana, our grand daughter. They should be down again in a couple of weeks.

Write ON!

Jerry Ericsson 4-2-2002 18:56

Also, (though they didn't mention it)

Sauron turns out to be Ayla gone punk, and Shelob offs the Crocodile Hunter and lands a prime time spot on the Animal Planet Network.

BTW - I saw the previews of the new Crocodile Hunter movie (for real!) It's strange!

howard 4-2-2002 17:04

This was posted yesterday (4/1/02) on Imladris.net:

Two Towers Plot Changes!

New Line has sent out a press release that reveals a significant plot changes that have been implemented in the Two Towers. These changes include:

a band of renegade orcs that join Frodo and Sam and help them in their quest to destroy the ring.

Instead of battling the Lord of the Nazgul in ROTK, Eowyn will fight Arwen for Aragorn's love. The battle ends in a stalemate and they decide to return to Rivendell for tea and crumpets.

Aragorn, Legolas, and Gimli trade in their horses for Oliphaunts.

Treebeard will be a talking daisy.

Aragorn discovers his latent magical powers that let him control the weather, fly, and teleport instantly to any location he desires. He instantly returns to Rivendell for tea and crumpets.


howard 4-2-2002 16:59

Hi All :)

Happy Birthday NB!! And my deepest thanks for being available, open, friendly and understanding.

Oyster - thanks for noticing my absence. :)

It seems I fell into a nice winter depression -- again. And even though it's snowing -- again -- I'm closer to being my normal self once more. I got the kitchen cleaned up yesterday and myself today. While I know that I suffer from depression every year at this time, and I know Prozac helps, I also don't like the way it absorbs my emotions. So, I suffer for a few weeks, then play catch-up on all the things that didn't get done.

Hopefully I can now get back to my writing. Maybe even a few words for this weeks shortie! It helped reading all the great stuff last weeks theme inspired.

Thanks everyone for being here. :)

Carol 4-2-2002 15:03

Jack :-) 4-2-2002 14:17

Thank you Jack!
Despite occasional frustrations, I've gained so much from this place. Without the confidence boost I've found here, I don't know if I would be finished that first draft, and anxious to send out query letters.

Hey, has anyone heard from Randall lately? I'm missing him and his posts. Randall, come back!

Blue Skies!

Tina 4-2-2002 13:35

Jack - Thanks for the NB. I have come and gone and come back again. This place is like a family.

Howard - My story is a true one. I wasn’t quite the same person after that. It took time to recover from. I was injured. That experience reminded me about how special my family and loved ones are. I don’t know how much time I have with them. I want each day that I do have with them to be lived well. I do that most of the time. Still, there are times when I don’t live as well as I might hope to. There are still times when I let the petty, stupid things in life draw me in and down. I guess I’m only human (winks). That is the perfect excuse for just about everything. I don’t know how long I was under the water. I know that I covered a lot of distance. It was not very long after the near drowning that I decided that working in a place that I hated and watching the constant humiliation of people was no longer something I wanted to do. I quit my job in favor of my life being one that I could stand up and say was well lived. Nobody could believe I would walk away from such a good job. The had thought I was a lifer for sure. That is what they call fulltime employees where I worked (lifers). The joke being that your employment was a sentence.

Jerry - Not long ago I had my dryer break down. That is not very much fun when you have six children... My house looked like something out of a comedy show. I had laundry hanging from every available surface. The long to short of this is that we were offered a dryer the other day. We accepted it. In past we have been offered washers, dryers, all sorts of things. We usually say no. This time we thought about not knowing the condition of the dryer in the house we will move to. We decided it is better safe that sorry, so for a bottle of wine and a handshake we got a new dryer. A child in the house changes everything. I know that my husbands mother loves to visit us. When we told her we were going to have a baby for the first time, she asked us how we could afford it. When we told her we were going to have our second child she said, it must be nice to be able to afford it. When we told her about Sebastian we expected some snide remark or another, instead her eyes filled with tears and she told us she had been wishing for another grandchild. It was not what any of us had expected. I however like this new her much better. She has had her own near death experiences of late. I think that maybe that has opened her eyes to the idea of living well and enjoying the time that is ours to have. For the past two or three years now we have had her come to stay with us for Christmas. I can’t think of a holiday that she hasn’t been with the family. She comes to visit me on a regular basis, telling me that I need to get out. She will give me her car and tell me to take as long as I want. It is strange and it is wonderful. I’m glad to hear that your family had such a warm, loving time together (hugs to you).

Mel - Happy days to you (hugs).

Oyster - If I had to identify my muses I would say they were male. No, not sexy hunks of manhood (winks and laughter). One would be a playful little boy, the other would be a grumpy old man. I however am not able to lay my creativity at the feet of another. I believe I am accountable for my writing or lack there of. I feel that if I am not writing that I need to look at myself and what I am writing and then consider why it is that I am not able to continue in the direction that I have begun. Such introspection will often lead to a discovery of self that will enhance my life and my writing. I doubt that there are many journalists who could turn to their editor and say ‘Hey bud, sorry, can’t meet the deadline. Its my muse. I just can’t gain my inspiration.” I think that would land a writer in the unemployment line. I’ve been blasted for such unromantic thinking in relation to writing in past. I do try to be kind the idea of muses. I swear, if I have and muse and it could be offended, it would have marched out on me years ago. I think that people can for a time gain inspiration form a time, place, person or thing. I suppose at that point, that the object, idea or person in question does become a muse. I’ve spent a lot of time thinking about muses and have concluded that they are simply not something that I can say I believe in at this point.

Debra - Hi you (smiles). I have great conflict with the idea of humanity. Sometimes I don’t think that there is much humanity at all, only little flashes of it. Little glimmers of what we could be if we could see clearly for a moment. I think that human beings could be so much more than we are. We strive and make excuses and then don’t really change much at all. I haven’t really come across many people who see things the way that I do. At least not most of the time ;o) I also am glad that my mother quit smoking. I hope your mother will quit.

Take care all.

Rachel 4-2-2002 12:09

Happy 6th birthday to this wonderful site

Now to shock you all... I am working on a shortie for this weeks shortie night.

Taylor 4-2-2002 11:22


Joyous, joyous origin jubilee to the NOTEBOOK!!!!!! :-)

Thank you so much, Jack, for creating this site. And thank you so much, everyone who's ever posted here and inspired me by doing so. The NB has made the writing life a LOT less lonely for me and helped me clarify writing goals and keep on track more frequently than I ever have.

Here's to MANY MORE years of satisfying writing and sharing through Jack's NOTEBOOK!!! YEA!!!!

Y'all have a GREAT DAY!!! :-D

Mel 4-2-2002 7:40

Thanks to those that noticed my math skills are still off :-) - yes, it is the sixth birthday of the Notebook. Am swamped with the minutae and human political foibles of my latest contract. Will be back as soon as I can. Know only that I cherish you all and am hoping to be able to recompense my goals at being a writer sooner rather than later and share some of it here and on a refurbished Workbook. Let us hope that some human frailties will be set aside so I can get these latest jobs done and get some money in the bank. Take care.

Jack Beslanwitch 4-2-2002 3:18

Cheers to another wonderful year: The Notebook's sixth birthday. The number six is apt, because it stands for family, togetherness, belonging, home, all things that the Notebook has provided for so many--a kind of a shelter. It means so much to me, even though I don't post as much as I used to. The Notebook was part of what caused me to be brave enough to believe in myself, and to stop being afraid to share what was inside me. Thank you, Jack.

The shorties this week were unbelievable. Firey and gutsy, that's what it's all about. Great stuff, guys.

Christi 4-1-2002 23:57

JACK -- Thanks for the archive! And even more thanks for putting up this site, and with us! It's like a second home and family to me.

JERRY -- thanks for the neat explanation of "poindexter."

howard 4-1-2002 23:56

Howard - I guess when I was a kid we had these guys who were what have been known as "nerds" you know the kind with the pocket protector, and a slide rule hanging from their belts. They always had real thick coke bottle glasses and in our school had "regular" hair cuts.

Before they were called nerds, we called them poindexter's after some kid in a comic book, I think it was in a Donald Duck comic book that had the kid with the propellor top on his beeney.

At any rate, now when I think of hackers, I picture them as a poindexter. To we kids in the "D-F" catagory, almost anyone who didn't smoke, drink and have detention could at one time or another qualify as a sort of poindexter, but those guys with the pocket protectors, they were the ones, they were the real, grade A poindexter. Back then, we had the crew cuts that quickly turned to the shaggy almost Beatle look in about my Junior year in High School. We were always about five years behind the rest of America, took that long for the stuff like that to reach us. I don't think I even had an idea what pot or LSD were before I joined the Army, there were rumors of kids who smoked nutmeg and got high, or smoked dried banana's to get high. We didn't need that, hell we had beer, cases and cases of beer, and when there was no money, we had the Country Club that happen to have one of those window air conditioners just above the entrance. Well you could pull that air conditioner out, and shove Denney "the littlest of our group" though that hole. He could push cases of beer and whiskey out through that hole, and we were set for weeks on our liquor supply.

Only problem was that the night I met my wife to be, they made a haul on the Country club, and were caught by my brother-in-law who worked on the PD.

That was the first of many times that my dear wife kept me out of trouble. The fellows who got caught, there was Denny, my cousin Ken, and his cousin John were arrested and our booze confiscated.

Ken was still a juvinile, so he and Denny who was the same age got sent to jail for thirty "nights" in jail. That meant that they would spend the night in jail, the jailer would let them out before breakfast, then they had to go to school, and report back to jail after classes, the City gave them supper. John who was 18 got "THE CHOICE" by the Judge. Either a year in prison or join the service. He joined the Navy.

Me, I got off scott free, and never told my brother-in-law that I was involved till a few years ago when we got drunk, in fact it was at our son's graduation party, when we were all smashed. Any, like I figured, he allready knew, but never said anything to dad, who would have cleaned my clock if he even thought I would be involved in anything so stupid.

Anyhow that's what a Poindexter is.

Boy I HAVE GOT to find my hot lingo to spell check this stuff.

Jerry Ericsson 4-1-2002 23:20

Just in time for its eighth birthday, the notebook has been archived. So, if you were among the old timers or the new timers or what have you, please reflect on what the Notebook has meant to you and the memories of those who have left or left and returned. Some have gone on to successful writing careers. Some have disappeared. Others are still trying. And most of all, all of us are still in love with the words. Always the words.

Jack Beslanwitch First Notebook page - April 2, 1996 4-1-2002 23:18

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