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October 23rd

Could we change our attitude, we should not only see life differently, but life itself would come to be different. – Katherine Mansfield


296th day of the year (297th in leap years) with 69 days to follow.

Holidays for Today:
~ National Boston Cream Pie Day
~ National Canning Day
~ National iPod Day (Apple introduced the iPod on October 23, 2001)
~ Swallows Depart from San Juan Capistrano Day
~ National TV Talk Show Host Day
~ International Mole Day (commemorates Avogadro’s Number (6.02 x 10^23), which is a basic measuring unit in chemistry)

Becoming fearless isn’t the point. That’s impossible. It’s learning how to control your fear, and how to be free from it. – Veronica Roth, Divergent


  • 1762 Samuel Morey, Hebron, Connecticut, inventor (worked on early internal combustion engines, pioneer in steamships, accumulated a total of 20 patents)
  • 1835 Adlai Stevenson I, Christian County, Kentucky, politician (23rd Vice President of the United States; Grover Cleveland President)
  • 1869 John Heisman, Cleveland, Ohio, football player and coach (Heisman trophy named after him)
  • 1918 James Daly, Wisconsin Rapids, Wisconsin, actor (Medical Center, Hallmark Hall of Fame (Emmy), Star Trek episode: Requiem for Methuselah)
  • 1925 Johnny Carson, Corning, Iowa, tv host and comedian (The Tonight Show 1962-1992)
  • 1942 Michael Crichton, Chicago, Illinois, author (The Andromeda Strain, The Terminal Man, Congo, Sphere, Jurassic Park, The Lost World, Prey, Micro, Dragon Teeth)
  • 1956 Dwight Yoakam, Pikeville, Kentucky, singer, actor, director (Sling Blade, Panic Room, Crank, Boomtown)
  • 1959 “Weird Al” Yankovic, Downey, California, musical parodist
  • 1960 Randy Pausch, Baltimore, Maryland, professor of computer science (“The Last Lecture: Really Achieving Your Childhood Dreams“, book The Last Lecture)
  • 1961 Laurie Halse Anderson, Potsdam, New York, author (Speak, Fever 1793, Catalyst, Prom, Twisted, Wintergirls)
  • 1986 Jessica Stroup, Anderson, South Carolina, actress (Prom Night, Vampire Bats, Left in Darkness, Jack Reacher Never Go Back, Iron Fist)
  • 1998 Amandla Stenberg, Los Angeles, California, actress (The Hunger Games, As You Are, Everything Everything, Where Hands Touch)

I can’t give you a sure-fire formula for success, but I can give you a formula for failure: try to please everybody all the time. – Herbert Bayard Swope


  • 1850 The first National Women’s Rights Convention begins in Worcester, Massachusetts, United States.
  • 1861 U.S. President Abraham Lincoln suspends the writ of habeas corpus in Washington, D.C., for all military-related cases.
  • 1929 The first North American transcontinental air service begins between New York City and Los Angeles, California.
  • 1946 The United Nations General Assembly convenes for the first time, at an auditorium in Flushing, Queens, New York City.
  • 1958 The Springhill Mine Bump – An underground earthquake traps 174 miners in the No. 2 colliery at Springhill, Nova Scotia, the deepest coal mine in North America at the time. By November 1, rescuers from around the world had dug out 100 of the victims, marking the death toll at 74.
  • 2001 Apple announces the iPod.
  • 2002 Moscow Theatre Siege begins: Chechen terrorists seize the House of Culture theater in Moscow and take approximately 700 theater-goers hostage.
  • 2004 A powerful earthquake and its aftershocks hit Niigata prefecture, northern Japan, killing 35 people, injuring 2,200, and leaving 85,000 homeless or evacuated.
  • 2015 The lowest sea-level pressure in the Western Hemisphere, and the highest reliably-measured non-tornadic sustained winds, are recorded in Hurricane Patricia, which strikes Mexico hours later, killing at least 13 and causing over $280 million in damages.


I realized that my five-year-old grandson had been watching too many reality TV shows the day we attended a relative’s wedding. As the four bridesmaids walked down the aisle toward the front of the church, he turned to me and asked, “Is this where the groom decides which one he wants to marry?”


The phone rang as I was sitting down to my anticipated evening meal and, as I answered, I was greeted with, “Is this Wilhiam Wagenhoss?”

This didn’t sound anything like my name, so I asked, “Who is calling?”

The telemarketer said he was with The Rubberband-Powered Freezer Company or something like that and then I asked him if he knew Wilhiam personally and why was he was calling this number. I then said, off to the side, “Get really good pictures of the body and all the blood.”

I then turned back to the phone and advised the caller that he had entered a murder scene and must stay on the line because we had already traced this call and he would be receiving a summons to appear in the local courthouse to testify in this murder case.

I then questioned the caller at great length as to his name, address, phone number at home, at work, who he worked for, how he knew the dead guy and could he prove where he had been about one hour before he made this call. The telemarketer was getting very concerned and his answers were given in a shaky voice.

Then I proceeded to tell him that we had located his position at his work place and the police were entering the building to take him into custody. At that point, I heard the phone fall and the scurrying of his running away.

My wife asked me, as I returned to the table, why I had tears streaming down my face and so help me, I couldn’t tell her for about fifteen minutes.

My meal was cold, but oh-so-very enjoyable.


ONE-LINERS: What The Job Ad Says: What It Really Means

~ Progressive company: Employees get to wear jeans every other Friday
~ Team player: Must deal with dangerously territorial coworkers with rabid personalities
~ Ground floor opportunity: Lousy job with a company that will file bankruptcy within a year

~ Upbeat personalities: Must neither threaten us with any kind of lawsuit nor use the drug alcohol rehab benefit within the first year
~ Word processing skills essential: There is a crippling case of carpal tunnel syndrome in your future
~ Public Relations Receptionist, Professional appearance important: $20 K a year job that requires a $100K year wardrobe

~ Salary range $24K to $32K: The salary is $24K
~ Will train: Prior conviction of a felony or two, no problem
~ BA required, MA preferred: Must be a MA willing to work for a BA salary
~ Civil service: This job was filled from the inside six months ago

My wife and I received an ice cream maker as a wedding gift … five years after our wedding. In an attempt to cover his procrastination with humor, the friend who sent it included a note:

“I wanted to make sure the marriage would last.”

My wife wasn’t amused, but she realized that the present deserved a thank-you note anyway. Which she dutifully sent. Five years later.

Her note read: “I wanted to be sure the ice cream maker would last.”

Thoughts to Ponder

~ Death is the number one killer in the world.
~ Good health is the slowest possible rate at which one can die.
~ Give a person a fish and you feed them for a day. Teach a person to use the Internet and they won’t bother you for weeks, if ever.

~ Health nuts are going to feel stupid someday, lying in the hospital dying of nothing.
~ All of us could take a lesson from the weather. It pays no attention to criticism.
~ In the 60’s, people took acid to make the world weird. Now the world *is* weird, and people take Prozac to make it normal.

~ Life is like a jar of jalapeno peppers. What you do today might burn your backside tomorrow.
~ Don’t worry about old age; it doesn’t last that long.

PIC OF THE DAY: Cumberland River in Corbin, Kentucky
Cumberland River in fall

The Senate is investigating deceptive sweepstakes practices. These companies target the elderly and make them think they will receive a bunch of money, but in reality they never see any of it.

The most popular of these scams is called Social Security.

The New York Times, among other papers, recently published a new Hubble photograph of distant galaxies colliding.

Of course, astronomers have had pictures of colliding galaxies for quite some time now, but with the vastly improved resolution provided by the Hubble Space Telescope, you can actually see the lawyers rushing to the scene.


Joe had been a long-time and very valued member of his church in Austin. He was a trustee and always preferred to fix things rather than replace them and he was very adept at doing so.

One day the pastor came into the office on his day off to get something. He was dressed in very grungy clothing and wearing a pair of running shoes that were falling apart. If fact, when he walked down the hall to his office it sounded like he was wearing flip-flops. This old trustee heard the noise and told the preacher, “I think I have some glue that will fix those shoes if you’ll give then to me.” A couple of days later he did just that.

A week later, when he went into his office he saw a brown bag on his desk. Upon opening it he found his repaired running shoes and a handwritten note stuffed in one of them. It read: “It is a rare occasion when a parishioner is able to save the Pastor’s sole.”

I said to the waiter, “You have to explain the special to me.”

The chalkboard read “Today’s Special: Broiled Snaper with 2 peas.”

The waiter laughed. “Yeah, the hostess had misspelled snapper, but she misunderstood the chef when he said, “The special has two p’s.”

“I don’t want to brag, or make anyone jealous or anything, but, I can still fit into the earrings that I wore in High School!”

A newspaper reporter was writing a feature story about prison life and was interviewing one of the prisoners. “Do you watch much television here?”
“Only the daytime shows,” the inmate said. “At night we’re locked in our cells and don’t see any television.”
“That’s too bad,” the reporter said, “But I do think it is nice that the warden lets you watch it in the daytime.”
“What do you mean, nice?” the inmate said. “That’s part of the punishment.”

My wife and I were dining out at a nice restaurant. I overheard the couple at the next table discussing their bill.

“Well Mary,” said the man, “Near as I can figure, based of the price of the ham dinner you just ate, we got a hog back on the farm that’s worth at least $137,000.”

Grandpa was always going on about the good old days, and the lower cost of living, in particular…

“When I was a kid, my mom could send me to the store, and I’d get a salami, two pints of milk, 6 oranges, 2 loaves o’ bread, and a magazine, some new blue jeans… all for a dollar!!

Then Grandpa said sadly …”You can’t DO that any more…they got those darn video cameras everywhere you look……”

The local council could not afford a speed camera, so they put up a sign saying: “Slow down Nursing Home” – It had no effect.

At the next meeting the decided to play on the paternal instincts and put up a sign: “Danger – Children at Play” – No discernable reduction in traffic speed.

Then the chairman had a brain-wave and suggested they try a sign with: “Nudist Colony” – As a result of the Nudist Colony notice, tractor trailers and trucks crawl thought the town.

TRIVIA TODAY: Wondering what materials are easiest to recycle? Aluminum, glass, and paper are the three materials most easy to recycle.

~ Which material can be recycled over and over indefinitely? Glass never wears out — it can be recycled forever. Most bottles and jars contain at least 25% recycled glass.

~ Can tin cans be recycled for steel? Yes, because tin cans are actually 99% steel, with a thin layer of tin added to prevent rusting.

~ Why is it important to recycle plastic? Every pound of recycled PET used in place of virgin material reduces energy use in plastic production by 84% and greenhouse gas emissions by 71%. Unfortunately, Americans use 4 million plastic bottles every hour, but only 1 bottle out of 4 is recycled.

~ Why is there a Swallows Depart from San Juan Capistrano Day? The day marks the migration of thousands of swallows that leave San Juan every year in a swirling mass near the Day of San Juan (October 23). They head for their winter vacation spot 6,000 miles south in Goya, Corrientes, Argentina. Each year, they return on or about March 19th – St. Joseph Day. Their migration has been marked for generations.
QUIP OF THE DAY: “What is a Democrat? One who believes that the Republicans have ruined the country. What is a Republican? One who believes that the Democrats would ruin the country.” – Ambrose Bierce


Thought for the day. . . Everyone faces challenges in life. It’s a matter of how you learn to overcome them and use them to your advantage. – Celestine Chua

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