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December 27th

Life is the first gift, love is the second, and understanding the third. – Marge Piercy


361st day of the year (362nd in leap years) with 4 days to follow.

Holidays for Today:
~ Howdy Doody Day
~ Make Cut Out Snowflakes Day
~ National Fruitcake Day
~ Visit The Zoo Day
~ The third of the Twelve Days of Christmas (Western Christianity)


  • 1654 Jacob Bernoulli, Swiss mathematician (separable differential equations; The Art of Conjecture – Bernoulli numbers)
  • 1773 George Cayley,England, scientist, inventor, and politician (one of the most important people in the history of aeronautics)
  • 1822 Louis Pasteur, French scientist (one of the most important founders of medical microbiology; created rabies & anthrax vaccines; invented pasteurization)
  • 1896 Louis Bromfield, Lucas, Ohio, author and conservationist (pioneering innovative scientific farming concepts, early proponent of organic and self-sustaining gardening)
  • 1939 John Amos, Newark, New Jersey, actor (The Mary Tyler Moore Show, Good Times, Roots, The West Wing, Judge Amos)
  • 1943 Cokie Roberts, New Orleans, Louisiana, journalist (National Public Radio, ABC News) and author (Capital Dames, Founding Mothers, Ladies of Liberty)
  • 1957 Greg Mortensen, St. Cloud, Minnesota, author (Stones into Schools: Promoting Peace with Books, Not Bombs, in Afghanistan and Pakistan )
  • 1958 Barbara Crampton, Levittown, New York, actress (“Scream Queen”: Re-Animator, Castle Freak, Cold Harvest, You’re Next, The Lords of Salem, Day of Reckoning)
  • 1969 Sarah Vowell, Muskogee, Oklahoma, author (Unfamiliar Fishes, Lafayette in the Somewhat United States) and actress (voice of Violet in The Incredibles)
  • 1976 Aaron Stanford, Westford, Massachusetts, actor (X-Men: The Last Stand, The Hills Have Eyes, 12 Monkeys)
  • 1991 Chloe Bridges, Louisiana, actress (Camp Rock 2: The Final Jam, Legally Blondes, Forget Me Not, Daytime Divas)

My life is an indivisible whole, and all my attitudes run into one another; and they all have their rise in my insatiable love for mankind. – Mohandas K. Gandhi


  • 1814 Destruction of schooner Carolina, the last of Commodore Daniel Patterson’s make-shift fleet that fought a series of delaying actions that contributed to Andrew Jackson’s victory at the Battle of New Orleans.
  • 1845 Ether anesthetic is used for childbirth for the first time by Dr. Crawford Williamson Long in Jefferson, Georgia.
  • 1927 The first true American musical, Show Boat, opens at the Ziegfeld Theatre on Broadway.
  • 1932 Radio City Music Hall opened in New York City.
  • 1966 The largest known cave shaft in the world, the Cave of Swallows, is discovered in Aquismón, San Luis Potosí, Mexico.
  • 1968 Apollo 8 splashes down in the Pacific Ocean, ending the first orbital manned mission to the Moon.
  • 1978 Spain becomes a democracy after 40 years of dictatorship.
  • 2004 Radiation from an explosion on the magnetar SGR 1806-20 reaches Earth. It is the brightest extrasolar event known to have been witnessed on the planet.


An engineer, a physicist and a mathematician are shown a pasture with a flock of sheep and told to put them inside the smallest possible amount of fencing.

The engineer herds the sheep into a circle and then puts the fence around them, declaring, “A circle will use the least fence for a given area, so this is the best solution.”

The physicist is next. He creates a circular fence as large as the pasture and then draws the fence tight around the herd, declaring, “This will give the smallest circular fence around the sheep.”

The mathematician is last. After giving the problem a little thought, he puts a small fence around himself and then declares, “I define myself to be on the outside.”

I was visiting my wife, who was in the hospital with a leg wound. The doctor said, “Can you describe what happened, please?”
I said, “She got shot.”

He said, “You’ll have to be more accurate.”
I said, “I know, but I’m not very experienced with guns.”

ONE-LINERS: Necessary Information for the 40-and-older crowd

– If you’re too open-minded, your brains will fall out.
– Age is a very high price to pay for maturity.
– Going to church doesn’t make you a Christian, any more than standing in a garage makes you a car.

– Not one shred of evidence supports the notion that life is serious.
– For every action, there is an equal and opposite government program.
– If you must choose between two evils, pick the one you’ve never tried before.

– Opportunities always look bigger going than coming.
– Bills travel through the mail at twice the speed of checks.
– If you look like your passport picture, you probably need the trip.

– There is always one more imbecile than you counted on.
– Someone who thinks logically provides a nice contrast to the real world.
– Junk is something you’ve kept for years and throw away three weeks before you need it.

A pharmacist is going over the directions on a prescription bottle with an elderly patient. “Be sure not to take this more often than every 4 hours,” the pharmacist says.

“Don’t worry,” replies the patient. “It takes me 4 hours to get the lid off”.

COMPANY B of the 11th Airborne Division stationed in Germany was sent on a two-day march. The weather was cold and rainy, and the roads soon turned to mud. The battalion commander, a colonel, marched with the troops, first with one group and then another.

On this moonless night, most of the men didn’t recognize the colonel with his rain gear on and military insignia covered up. One miserable private leaned toward him and said, “Can you believe some idiots actually make a career out of this?”

pic of the day: Two Turkeys on a Truck

Two Turkeys on Truck

At a country-club party a young man was introduced to an attractive girl. Immediately he began paying her court and flattering her outrageously. The girl liked the young man, but she was taken a bit aback by his fast and ardent pitch. She was amazed when after 30 minutes he seriously proposed marriage.

“Look,” she said. “We only met a half hour ago. How can you be so sure? We know nothing about each other.”

“You’re wrong,” the young man declared. “For the past five years I’ve been working in the bank where your father has his account.”

One day the zoo-keeper noticed that the orangutan was reading two books — the Bible and Darwin’s Origin of Species. In surprise he asked the ape, “Why are you reading both those books”?

“Well,” said the orangutan, “I just wanted to know if I was my brother’s keeper or my keeper’s brother.”


At the shore there is a pub that sits between a tobacco store and a gym. The owners of the bar do not want patrons who come directly from the gym, as their body odor discourages others. For the same reasons, they don’t want any smoking, and they don’t want people tracking sand into the bar.

So they put up a sign: NO WHIFFS, SANDS OR BUTTS.

When a grandmother was in her late eighties, she decided to move to Israel. As part of the preparations, she went to see her doctor and get all her charts. The doctor asked her how she was doing, so she gave him the litany of complaints – this hurts, that’s stiff, I’m tired and slower, etc.

He responded with, “Mrs. Siegel, you have to expect things to start deteriorating. After all, who wants to live to 100?”

The grandmother looked him straight in the eye and replied, “Anyone who’s 99.”

Conversation between employee and boss:

“Excuse me, sir, may I talk to you?”
“Sure, come on in. What can I do for you?”

“Well, sir, as you know, I have been an employee of this prestigious firm for over ten years.”
“Yes … ?”

“I won’t beat around the bush. Sir, I would like to remain here but I need a raise. I currently have four companies pursuing me and so I decided to talk to you first.”
“A raise? I would love to give you a raise, but this is just not the right time.”

“I understand your position, and I know that the current economic downturn has had a negative impact on sales, but you must also take into consideration my hard work, proactiveness, and loyalty to this company for over a decade.”
“Taking into account these factors, and considering I don’t want a brain drain, I’m willing to offer you a ten percent raise and an extra five days of vacation time. Does that work?”

“Great! It’s a deal! Thank you, sir!”
“Before you go, just out of curiosity, what companies were pursuing you?”
“The Electric Company, the Gas Company, MasterCard and my Mortgage Company.”

At the airport for a business trip, I settled down to wait for the boarding announcement at Gate 35. Then I heard the voice on the public address system saying, “We apologize for the inconvenience, but Delta Flight 570 will board from Gate 41.”

So my family picked up our luggage and carried it over to Gate 41. Not ten minutes later the public address voice told us that Flight 570 would in fact be boarding from Gate 35.

So, again, we gathered our carry-on luggage and returned to the original gate. Just as we were settling down, the public address voice spoke again: “Thank you for participating in Delta’s physical fitness program.’

A Charlotte, North Carolina man, having purchased a case of rare, very expensive cigars, insured them against …. get this …. fire.

Within a month, having smoked his entire stockpile of fabulous cigars, and having yet to make a single premium payment on the policy, the man filed a claim against the insurance company.

In his claim, the man stated that he had lost the cigars in “a series of small fires.”

The insurance company refused to pay, citing the obvious reason that the man had consumed the cigars in a normal fashion.

The man sued … and won!!

In delivering his ruling, the judge stated that since the man held a policy from the company in which it had warranted that the cigars were insurable, and also guaranteed that it would insure the cigars against fire, without defining what it considered to be “unacceptable fire,” it was obligated to compensate the insured for his loss.

Rather than endure a lengthy and costly appeal process, the insurance company accepted the judge’s ruling and paid the man $15,000 for the rare cigars he lost in “the fires.”

After the man cashed his check, however, the insurance company had him arrested… on 24 counts of arson!

With his own insurance claim and testimony from the previous case being used as evidence against him, the man was convicted of intentionally burning the rare cigars and sentenced to 24 consecutive one year terms.

TODAY IN TRIVIA: Why does ice float? Water has a greater molecular density in liquid form than as a solid. This is why ice floats.

~ What did the first vending machine dispense? The first vending machines in the US dispensed chewing gum and were installed in New York City train platforms in 1888.

~ How long is a chameleon’s tongue? The chameleon, a small lizard generally measuring 6 or 7 inches, has a tongue several inches longer than its body. With a thrust of this remarkable appendage, it can catch insects some 10 inches away.

QUIP OF THE DAY: Never interrupt your enemy when he is making a mistake. – Napoleon Bonaparte


Thought for the day. . . Life is very short and what we have to do must be done in the now. – Audre Lorde

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