Tuesday, November 30, 2010

Top 10 Writing a Novel in a Month

1. On November 1st, I listed November on the National Level. One of the Top 10 was writing a novel in a month. November was that month. I personally took the challenge and anyone can do it but you missed the National November boat. It is not too late to do it on your own.

2. You do not have to be a professional writer only have the desire to achieve. Grammar and spelling do not matter at this point.

3. The rules are intense, yet simple. You have to write daily 1,667 words. It can be a lot and grueling. I found on the average I could do it in 1 ½ hours. At times my count was higher, you can get lost in your own thoughts and words.(smile)

4. Who has that kind of time? If you have no interest or desire, you don’t and you may miss a few reality TV shows.

5. The other tough rule was you could not use any written material you previously had. It had to be fresh thoughts each day.

6. At first I found this to be a challenge because I had begun my own novel back in 2006 and have put it aside and never finished it. I thought this would be an opportunity to bring that back and clear out the cobwebs.

7. My mistake was I waited until late in the evening to begin and at times I felt it was a chore rather then a pleasure. I watched the clock and constantly checked my word count. You can check the word count on MS Word by going to Tools and clicking on word count. I don’t however recommend that because it is only a distraction.

8. The website claims if you do this you will achieve writings the size of Pride and Prejudice. If you have never read that book, it’s pretty big! You do not have to come out with a Pulitzer Prize, this time. You don’t really have to have a concrete story, just write.

9. By being a part of the contest I did receive periodic pep talk emails from other writers and will receive a certificate at the end. Not a published novel. The emails are clever in their own way, playing up the psychological negative side. Many of these emails began with go ahead and quit……… One was from a NY Times writer who has published many of his own novels.

10. Today will be the last day for me, no clue what I will write about yet but it will probably be about conclusions and the ecstasy of finishing a project that I have begun. It wasn’t easy but there is a certain satisfaction when you tackle something that you never thought you could do.

Next month is all about editing. Maybe I will learn something. It is an interesting journey for anyone to take. You don’t have to be a pro, I’m not. Every one has a story to tell. Here is the website again for anyone that needs a little inspiration. http://www.nanowrimo.org/

Monday, November 29, 2010

Top 10 The Bird Nest

1. A bird nest is a spot where birds lay and incubate their eggs and raise their young.

2. Nests are built each year in most species but some birds refurbish their old nests.

3. In most species, the female does all or most of the nest construction, though the male often helps.

4. Although nests are primarily used for breeding they may also be reused in the non-breeding season for roosting and some species build special dormitory nests or roost nests (or winter-nest) that are used only for roosting.

5. The cup nest is smoothly hemispherical inside, with a deep depression to house the eggs. Most are made of pliable materials including grasses though a small number are made of mud. Many passerines and a few non-passerines, including some hummingbirds and some swifts, build this type of nest.

6. Small bird species in more than 20 passerine families, and a few non-passerines—including most hummingbirds, kinglets and crests in the genus Regulus, some tyrant flycatchers and several New World warblers use considerable amounts of spider silk in the construction of their nests. The lightweight material is strong and extremely flexible, allowing the nest to mold to the adult during incubation (reducing heat loss), then to stretch to accommodate the growing nestlings; as it is sticky, it also helps to bind the nest to the branch or leaf to which it is attached.

7. The study of bird nests is called caliology.

8. Many birds nest close to human habitations and some have been specially encouraged. Nesting White Storks have been protected and held in reverence in many cultures. Some species of birds are also considered nuisances when they nest in the proximity of human habitations. Feral pigeons are often unwelcome and sometimes also considered as a health risk. The Beijing National Stadium, principal venue of the 2008 Summer Olympics, has been nicknamed "The Bird Nest" because of its architectural design, which its designers likened to a bird's woven nest.

9. In the Victorian era, naturalists often collected bird's eggs and their nests.

This much bigger nest belongs to the squirrels in the neighborhood.

10. If you have a further interest in birds and their nesting, I found a fascinating website with photos and live webcams called Nest Watch located at http://watch.birds.cornell.edu/nest/home/index NestWatch is a nest-monitoring project developed by the Cornell Lab of Ornithology in collaboration with the Smithsonian Migratory Bird Center, and funded by the National Science Foundation.

This may seem like a random list but if you look around outside, I am sure you will find a few nests of your own. Especially, if the majority of your leaves have fallen. The pictures in the blog were taken in my backyard yesterday.

Friday, November 26, 2010

Top 10 Black Friday, Gift and Shopping Songs

  1. Black Friday Steely Dan
  2. Crazy Gnarls Barkley
  3. Shop Around The Miracles
  4. Bargain The Who
  5. The Gift Jim Brickman
  6. The Bargain Store Dolly Parton
  7. I Don’t Go Shopping Patti LaBelle
  8. Barely Breathing Duncan Sheik
  9. Can’t Buy Me Love The Beatles
  10. Buy Me A Rose Kenny Rogers

Happy shopping hope you get a good deal!

Give the gift of song.

It’s a simple gift!

Thursday, November 25, 2010

Top 10 Thanksgiving Facts

1. In 1621, the Pilgrims shared a harvest meal with the Wampanoag Indians in a Plymouth Colony in what is now the state of Massachusetts. It has been acknowledged as the first Thanksgiving celebration. It was a sharing of friendship and trust and of course food.

2. President Abraham Lincoln declared the last Thursday in November as the national day of thanksgiving in 1863.

3. It was not until 1941, Congress made Thanksgiving Day a National Holiday.

4. According to the Cape Cod Cranberry Growers' Association, one of the country's oldest farmers' organizations, Native Americans used cranberries in a variety of foods, including "pemmican" (a nourishing, high-protein combination of crushed berries, dried deer meat and melted fat). They also used it as a medicine to treat arrow punctures and other wounds and as a dye for fabric. The Pilgrims adopted these uses for the fruit and gave it a name—"craneberry"—because its drooping pink blossoms in the spring reminded them of a crane.

5. The tradition of playing or watching football on Thanksgiving started with the first National Football League game on the holiday in 1934.

6. The idea of a department-store parade originated in 1920 with Gimbels Department Store in Philadelphia with the parade now known as the 6abc IKEA Thanksgiving Day Parade. Macy's did not start a parade until 1924. When Gimbels closed down in 1986, television station WPVI took over responsibility for the parade, with sponsorship by Reading, Pennsylvania-based Boscov's. Currently, Channel 6ABC and IKEA sponsor the parade. Gimbels Department Store was located at 9th and Market Street in Philadelphia now a parking lot awaiting further development.

7. On November 20, 2007, President George W. Bush granted a "pardon" to two turkeys, named May and Flower, at the 60th annual National Thanksgiving Turkey presentation, held in the Rose Garden at the White House. The two turkeys were flown to Orlando, Florida, where they served as honorary grand marshals for the Disney World Thanksgiving Parade.

8. The current tradition of presidential turkey pardons began in 1947, under Harry Truman, but the practice is said to have informally begun with Abraham Lincoln, who granted a pardon to his son Tad's pet turkey.

9. In 2009, President Obama pardoned a turkey named Courage. I am personally glad he kept that one alive.

10. The American Automobile Association (AAA) estimated that 38.4 million Americans traveled 50 miles or more from home over the Thanksgiving holiday weekend in 2009.

A majority of these facts were found at history.org

Wednesday, November 24, 2010

Top 10 Musical Memories of the Spectrum in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania

Many famous acts played at the Spectrum

1. Yes played the Spectrum 32 times between 1971 and 2004. I saw them 4 times. 72, 74, 75 and once with my 15 year old son in 2004. I was a bit of a Yes freak. They always mesmerized me.

2. Dave Mason played the Spectrum 6 times. I have seen Dave Mason in concert over a dozen times. Four of those events were at the Spectrum. He’s a favorite. During one of the concerts, a drunk staggered down the steps fell over the seats and landed in my lap and got sick. Had Dave Mason and his guitar not have been my idol it would have been a most unpleasant evening. Some years later, in a club in Cherry Hill, I got back stage and met Mr. Mason. After I professed my love for him, he kissed me. I doubt he remembers the experience but it is one of those moments in time I will never forget. I still have my back stage pass :)

3. The Who concert in 1973 was great we met some new friends from South Philly but the true memory was after the concert. My best friend drove and we were in a 6 car pile up accident in Ridley that evening. Luckily no one was injured, we had just come from Jack in the Box and my girlfriend asked me to pick up the French Fries that had spilled on the floor. Her mother got upset when the car got messy. Her car was totaled.

4. Emerson, Lake & Palmer 1973 This one took me all night to find. I knew I wasn’t hallucinating. I distinctly remember Keith Emerson playing piano and spinning around upside down. Now I think to myself, how could this possibly be? Well here it is. Keith Emerson and his flying piano. You have to love Youtube.(warning bad language in the comments)

5. Jefferson Starship 1974 our seats weren’t great so I traveled closer to the stage to get a glimpse of Grace Slick. Her voice was still amazing but up close she looked a little beat. In all fairness, she may say the same about me today.

Driving by the sports complex at night, The Spectrum was the little one. It reminded me of a spaceship all aglow. Perhaps slightly dwarfed by the other newer stadiums but it is the one that caught my eye. It was an original.

6. Tina Turner 2008 (girl’s night out) She is absolutely amazing and I still have the $5 T-shirt we all purchased in the parking lot. Tina is an inspiration to me at her age she still rocks.

7. David Bowie 1983 I purchased tickets for my boyfriend and then we broke up. I gave the tickets to him anyway. I still regret that decision. Surely I wasn’t thinking clearly. Hope you enjoyed that one Mr. X.

8. Bob Dylan 1974 Amazing man that has written some of my favorite lyrics. I was in obstructive view seats behind the stage. Mr. Dylan turned and performed 2 songs to us. He called us the tush seats.

9. Neil Diamond 1993 My mother and Aunt Jean from Canada were big fans so I took them. He was great!

10. Grateful Dead 1979 played there 53 times. I only saw them once. Dead heads dancing around the concourse was a site to behold. I hardly knew the music when I went so the experience was a little strange to me.

The Spectrum met the wrecking ball at noon November 23rd 2010.

The Spectrum was the place to see music live, back in my hey day . Check out the list of concerts from rememberthespectrum.com. Does it cause any flashbacks? I feel like I have seen them all. In reality, I only wish I had.

Now I share with you a story from a friend who had the dream job.

It was December, 1973. I had graduated from Widener College earlier that year, and was in graduate school in New Jersey, when I was offered a dream job: assistant public relations director at The Spectrum.

I quit school, took the job, leased an apartment in Ridley Park, and found myself in a world where rock and sports stars were all around. I recall seeing Billy Jean King in the offices now and then. She was starting up World Team Tennis. At a press event following a Kinks concert, Ray Davies, sat next to me and struck up a conversation as if we were old friends. I remember the stir at the Spectrum when Frank Sinatra tickets went on sale and sold out almost immediately.
The National Hockey League was a whole new thing to me, but like everybody else, I was swept up in the Flyers frenzy that culminated with them winning their first Stanley Cup. If I'm not mistaken, it was a ticket taker at the Spectrum who came up with the bumper sticker, "Only the Lord Saves More Than Bernie Parent," which was seen on what seemed like every other car in town. The Broad Street Bullies were Rock stars.

There was also the Monday Night Fights, the Sixers, and an attempt to get a national lacrosse league going.

The concerts, however, were my biggest thrill. The Beach Boys, Boz Scaggs, Peter Frampton, Deep Purple, Cat Stevens, and Edgar Winter are some that come to mind, though there were many more. I have a particular memory of a press event for the group Yes. The affair was catered by The Astral Plane. All the guys in the band enjoyed the natural and organic delicacies they served, except for keyboardist Rick Wakeman who sat on the floor in the corner with a pepperoni pizza and a six-pack.

On Fridays, the management at the Spectrum would treat the office staff to deli food at lunch. I enjoyed the food and the chance to chat with other folks there.

I came to have great respect for the people at The Spectrum who were in charge of security. Theirs was a tricky job. Think about all the substances that were used by concert-goers back then, including some who were quite young. At one show, something happened that I'll never forget. A young lady had removed all of her clothes and was being passed overhead by the crowd. The security people moved quickly got some clothes on her and removed her from the stadium. Twenty minutes later, she was inside and naked again. I think that's when I knew it was time to pursue a career rather than a dream job.

Walt Haake
Princeton, NJ

This photo was snapped while landing at the Philadelphia Airport. I always look down at the city and identify that I am home. Now the landscape will change a bit.

Tuesday, November 23, 2010

Top 10 Thanksgiving Secrets Revealed

1. What, I don’t seem like a person who can not cook? Way back in 1988, I gave birth to my first born the day after Thanksgiving. Ever since that day I was considered talented, so I host the Thanksgiving dinner every year and it is also a celebration of my son David’s life.

2. That same year, MAB Paints for the first and last time ever had a float in the Philadelphia Thanksgiving Day Parade. I wanted to be on that float. I am a former MAB lifer. I worked in the home office for 27 years in the IT department, until mine and several other positions were dismissed or eliminated when MAB Paints was bought by Sherwin Williams in 2006. The controller at the time would not allow me on the float because I was considered a medical liability. It was probably a wise decision and perhaps may have changed history. I however do have the video recording off the television and cheered when the float came around the corner. I know who represented MAB that day.

3. Preparations for Turkey Day are made several days ahead. Making the phone calls and determining the guest list comes first. I have learned from previous years from my parents, family is an extension and it is always expanding and retracting. Everyone who can make it is welcomed. There is always one guest who can not make it and their presence is felt but missed.

4. Digging out the books and finding the recipes comes next and then checking for stock and “special” ingredients. Okay so maybe I am not an original but no one complains. I’m always open for suggestions and sometimes will try something new.

5. My sister’s-in-law bring the sides, sweet potato casserole and I never have to ask “who’s making the green bean casserole”. My mother is the pumpkin pie maker and the mother in law the salad maker and baker of the rolls.

6. Nothing is more stunning then a beautifully bronzed turkey coming out of the oven, trussed and dressed to kill or would that be before is goes in the oven. Since Auntie Jean has passed away, our only dark meat eater, we donate the frozen turkey and purchase two breasts, every body has them. One year my sister-in-law offered a turkey she had won at work. It had been in her trunk for several days. I declined and in her defense, she was much younger then.

7. Game day begins early around 8am and I ain’t talking about football, although football is playing in the background after the parade. If you venture onto my playing field you better be prepared I will blow the whistle. I am not a friendly coach that day as my team knows. When I take over the kitchen that day, I need space.

8. Imagine that on the biggest meal of the year day, my family is hungry for breakfast. I am the admitted Tasmanian devil in the kitchen that day. Ladies can you relate? For the most part I hold my composure, and may ask the question. What are you doing?

9. I do have help in the kitchen, he cleans the bird. I have trouble and feel like I am violating it removing all the insides. Our birds usually take around 4 hours, so it is in the oven by noon. I cook both breasts in bags with two different recipes, which can be found at butterball.com (Turkey Breast and Sweet Potatoes) and alcoa.com/reynoldskitchens/en/recipe.com (Turkey Breast ‘N Gravy). The stuffing I pretty much know by heart now, it has been over 20 years. I make the standard bread stuffing and a little favorite of mine apple raisin stuffing found in Betty Crocker if I have a memory lapse. The very best tip I have ever had (my hairdresser) is make the mash potatoes ahead of time and keep them warm in the crock pot. It works out perfectly. The rest is just fluff.

10. He is now at the other end of the kitchen making broccoli soup as if the turkey isn’t gassy enough and then he makes his special ice box dessert and the birthday cake, always shaped with the birth year. It is made from Nabisco chocolate wafers and heavy whipping cream. Always a big hit and crowd pleaser. I am exhausted by the time every one arrives and my younger sister in law is in charge of making sure my wine glass is full. By the end of the evening all the ladies are gathered in the kitchen, cackling, finishing up the wine and cleaning up what I find to be the very best holiday of the year. It’s all about family and friends. This year I give thanks for another year and for those that gather at my table and for those who can no longer make it. Appreciate the cook as she surely appreciates you and the time spent.

This year I look forward to celebrating my son’s 22nd year and anxiously await the return of my prodigal daughter traveling safely home from 8 hours away.

What makes this day so special to you? What is your secret ingredient?

Monday, November 22, 2010

Top 10 Why Oswald Could Not Have Shot President Kennedy

Here are ten of the reasons that Lee Oswald could not have shot President Kennedy at all.

This list was compiled by Robert Groden, a well known leading critic of the Warren Commission since 1969.

10- No Motive. Oswald had admired JFK, and had nothing to gain from the assassination.

The stretch of the road where the President was shot was not very big.

9- No Opportunity. Oswald had been elsewhere at the time of the shooting.

The Grassy Knoll

8- No Means. Oswald had no weapon with which to shoot the President.

The view from the grassy knoll. The firetruck represents the location of the limo during the fatal shot.

7- Lie Detector Tests. At least three lie detector (Psychological Stress Evaluator and Voice Stress Analyzer) tests were applied to recordings of Oswald's statements of innocence. He passed every one.

Shots are believed to have come from behind this fence. The fence has since been replaced.

6- Fingerprint Evidence. None of Oswald's fingerprints were found on any of the three rifles found at the Depository.

5- Fingerprint Evidence part 2. None of Oswald's fingerprints were found in the "sniper's nest", but Malcolm Wallace's (and already convicted killer) were.

Click on the image to enlarge the "sniper's nest".

4- Oswald was seen in the second floor snack room just minutes before the shots were fired.

Oswald was questioned on the 2nd floor and allowed to walk out the door.

3- Victoria Adams and Sandra Stiles swore that Oswald did not pass them on the stairs moments after the shots. He would have had to pass them to get to the second floor.

2- The Fatal Shot Came From The Front. The alleged sniper's nest was in the rear.

A view from the X marked on the street, the location of the Presidential limousine.

1- Geraldine Reid was talking to Oswald on the second floor at the moment that the shots were fired.

Robert Groden

I met Mr. Groden recently on a visit to Dallas outside the Book Depository where Lee Harvey Oswald allegedly shot and killed President Kennedy. Groden was promoting several books he has written and also has a very graphic DVD available for purchase that includes many authentic photographs and portions of live video recorded on November 22, 1963. He was the Staff Photographic Consultant to the House Select Committee on Assassination’s for three years. He also was a consultant on the Oliver Stone film, JFK. Robert Groden was born on November 22, 1945.

Publications written by Robert Groden are available on his website jfkmurder.com as well as videos with very graphic depictions, plus verbal claims by those that were there.

My own personal conclusion is something very tragic happened that day that has effected our country and government ever since. Something that haunts me is how Mrs. Kennedy survived that day. She is seen crawling towards the trunk of the limo. It is said that she was retrieving portions of her husband’s brain.

The Sixth Floor Museum in Dallas, Texas is located on the site of the former Texas Book Depository. It is an amazing place to visit. You take an audio tour back in time, not only to that fateful day but it also provides a rich history of the times. No photography is permitted inside that would only distract from the intimate experience.

A Special Exhibit on the seventh floor displayed photos by Bob Jackson. His photographs are amazing, the most famous, captured Jack Ruby shooting Lee Harvey Oswald and this photograph won Jackson the Pulitzer Prize for News Photography in 1964. The day of the assassination Jackson was riding in the press car in the motorcade six cars behind the President. His camera had no film in it at the time of the shooting. He had unloaded the film and tossed it to a fellow reporter, Jim Featherston. Featherson had dropped the envelope and they were laughing about it when the first shot rang out. According to Mr. Jackson, two more shots occurred and he recalled seeing men hanging out the fifth floor window and looking up to the sixth floor of the Book Depository. He saw the rifle being pulled back into the building. That image only remains in his mind. He was one of four eyewitnesses to see the rifle.

Outside the museum is a different experience. Many of the same structures and scenery remain with one addition. An X marks the spot in the roadway, where it all happened.

Other links of interest:
JFKMURDERSOLVED.com A 2003 interview with confessed assassin of JFK
Lee Harvey Oswald interview with William Stuckey August 17th, 1963
Oswald Interview after arrest
Lee Harvey Oswald Shot in slow motion
Interview with Marine (wife of Lee Harvey Oswald)
Rachel Oswald Porter (daughter of Lee Harvey Oswald)
JFK assassination Secret Service Stand down
Lee Harvey Oswald’s Funeral reporters were the pallbearers

This photograph was taken on October 29th, 1960 when Senator Kennedy came to Chester, Pa during his campaign for President. It is a family treasure. Click on this link to view his speech that day.

Friday, November 19, 2010

Top 10 Songs That Reference JFK

President John Fitzgerald Kennedy

  1. Abraham, Martin and John Dion
  2. He Was a Friend of Mine Byrds
  3. Brain of J Pearl Jam
  4. The Day John Kennedy Died Lou Reed
  5. Dallas 1PM Saxon
  6. Life in a Northern Town Dream Academy
  7. November 22nd Destroy All Monsters
  8. We Didn’t Start the Fire Billy Joel
  9. Sympathy for the Devil Rolling Stones
  10. Brand New 64 Dodge Greg Brown

And of course Happy Birthday Mr. President Marilyn Monroe

Monday November 22nd will be 48 years since the assassination of a President in our lifetime. Even if you were a child at the time, it made an impact.

From 1947, when John F. Kennedy was first elected to Congress, to 2011, when Patrick J. Kennedy will leave Congress, there has been a 64-year run of a Kennedy family member holding an elective office in Washington.[4] This represents more than a quarter of the nation's existence

Thursday, November 18, 2010

Top 10 Curiosity

1. Curiosity killed the cat. Where did that come from? According to Wikipedia, The origin of the modern variation is unknown. The earliest known printed reference to the actual phrase is found in the 1902 edition of Proverbs Maxims and Phrases, by John Hendricks Bechtel. On page 100, the phrase "Curiosity killed the cat" is the lone entry under the topical heading Curiosity.

2. Haven’t we all used the phrase and said it to someone to caution them or heard it from a caring friend.

3. Students and knowledge Aren’t we all students and curious about the past and the way things work? A good teacher produces a curious student.

4. Small children are just about the most curious people I have ever met. Aren’t they always asking, why?

5. Your job Aren’t you curious about your work? Okay maybe there are some days you have to question authority. Why do you want me to do that? Be curious and figure it out, it may lead to greater things.

6. Architects, engineers, discoverers, inventors Where would we be today if they were not curious? You can’t have anything new without trying something a little different.

7. The Internet If you are curious, you can find out just about anything you want to know and then some on the internet just by doing a search. Have you ever clicked on a link that lead to a link that lead to a link and six hours later you are still curious but forget your original intention? Just a word to all you cats out there. It’s not all true!

8. Every day curiosity We come across it constantly whether we are questioning ourselves or the actions of others.

9. Curious is a good thing. It is how we learn, but always proceed with caution.

10. If you are curious about me I read my blog hits every day because I am curious about you and the stats are interesting. So if you are curious, that will be a blog on another day so keep reading my blog to find out what you are all about.

We are all curious about something. What’s on your mind today?
Just curious.

Wednesday, November 17, 2010

Top 10 Molumby's Millions

Iron Age Theater Production in Norristown, PA

Molumby’s Millions is playing Friday and Saturday at 8PM matinees on Sunday 2PM through November 28th at the Iron Age Theater in Norristown. Check out the Iron Age website for more information on the show and call 610-279-1013 for tickets. On Saturday evening, November 20th, special guest Jason Kelly author of Shelby’s Folly will be in attendance and offer his spin on the story after the show. The playwright, D. W. Gregory will also be there to answer your questions.

1. Molumby’s Millions is a play written by D. W. Gregory about the fall out, knockdown that happened during the career of boxing great Jack Dempsey vs Tommy Gibbons July 4th, 1923. It was one of the biggest financial disasters in boxing history.

2. The story takes place in Shelby, Montana, and it became a who is sleeping with who, as told by the press. Loy Molumby, an American veteran, oil man sets out to meet Jack Kearns, the manager of Dempsey to arrange a spectacular event to draw the crowds to the town. Big money and big plans were set in motion. Kearns a shrewd business man cut a below the belt deal of $300,000 and the fight preparations began.

Loy Molumby (Anthony M Giampetro), Doc Kearns (Ray Saraceni) Kearn's "Secretary" (Krissy Johnson)

3. Spectacular needs money, a star and sensation. This play offers it all. Under the direction of John Doyle and Randall Wise, the cast comes fighting through. Set design by Wise immediately places you in the arena as you wait for the match to begin among the cheers and jeers of the crowd. Dave Mason was the fight choreographer and also played the role of Tommy Gibbons.

Advertising and Promoting (Krissy Johnson) Maggie "The Secretary"

4. Prior to the fight, the press, a male and a female on opposing sides took their jabs at Dempsey, a handsome talented journeyman who had taken an upper cut from his fans by being accused of being a draft dodger but he still could pack a punch.

Runyon, a reporter (Luke Moyer), Neysa a fashion reporter/sportswriter (Rachel Semigran)

5. The wide eyes and expectations soon ran dry as the money never arrived. The backers took their own punches. A huge stadium was built to house over 42,000 fans. The day of the match only 7,000 fans paid, others crashed the gate. The expense of the fight literally broke the town; however it placed them on the map and in the history books.

Stanton, Pres. of Shelby Bank (D. Fiebert) Jim Johnson Mayor of Shelby (Adam Altman), Molumby, veteran and oil man from Shelby Montana (Anthony Giampetro)

6. The press eventually got their story straight and every one enjoyed the challenge and had their story told. The combination does not always come out as predicted.

Tex Rickard infamous boxing promoter (Dave Fiebert) D. Runyon famous sports writer (Luke Moyer)

7. It is a perplexing tale of money, greed, class and power and a metaphor for who is sleeping with whom and can you really trust those strange bedfellows.

The Champ, Jack Dempsey (Howie Brown) and Neysa (Rachel Semigran) fashion reporter turned sportswriter.

8. In the end, the fight was saved by the bell. Despite all the manipulation and distortion of the facts, Dempsey comes through as the true champion. He was a good fighter with a knock out punch. The money played a minor role and benefited no one at the conclusion.

Sparring partner (Adam Altman), Dempsey (Howie Brown), Kearns (Ray Saraceni)

9. Bullies and boxing, it is a sport and we all are spectators to that type of match every day with money, power and greed. There is always a clear winner and loser. I have to thank, the writer, the entire cast and production staff for bringing that to my attention.

The Champ (Howie Brown) and his manager (Ray Saraceni)

10. When I attend a theater presentation, I often struggle with the point of the story. In my opinion this one was clear. Go out and see the production and make your own decision. There is much more to the story. It is a small venue that places you right in the middle of the action and the plays and players at Iron Age Theater never disappoint me! It is a comedy about a very serious subject.

The Cast

Howie Brown as Jack Dempsey, the Manassa Mauler

Ray Saraceni as Doc Kearns, his manager

Luke Moyer as Damon Runyon, a reporter

Rachel Semogran as Neysa, a fashion reporter turned sportswriter

Anthony M Giampetro as Loy Molumby, a veteran and Oil man from Shelby, Montana

Adam Altman as Jim Johnson, the Mayor of Shelby; George Hills of the Great Northern Railroad;Bill Wray, a sparring partner; Fred Starr, Silver Screen Villain; New York Editor

Dave Fiebert as Tex Rickard, Infamous boxing promoter; George Stanton President of Shelby Bank and Trust; Mr. Rankin, Attorney General of Montana; Old Man (mine).

Krissy Johnson as Maggie, Kearn's "Secretary"; Josie, a famous actress; Muldoon, a boxing commissioner.

Dave Mason as Tommy Gibbons

Produced by Fran Doyle, John Doyle, Randall Wise and The Centre Theater
Fight Choreography: Dave Mason
Stage Manager: Amanda Nelson
Set Design and Construction: Randall Wise
Scene Paintings: Michele Peraino
Costumes: Randall Wise
Lighting Design: Ben Lean
Sound: Lauren Joseph
Light Operator: Becky Ellis
Graphics and Publication: John Doyle
Sound Design: John Doyle
Seamstress: Jayne Burt
House Manager: Mary Jacobs, Judy Memberg

and here is the part I am not allowed to write

As far as Howard Shapiro’s review in the Philadelphia Inquirer of the show. Them’s fighting words my friend and you are talking about family. Put ‘em up, Put ‘em up! Appreciate the art and the artist. I think you missed the point or maybe I saw a different show. It happens. My first instinct was to challenge your words. I then decided to see it for myself. Everyone is entitled to their opinions and viewpoint. Hard work goes into each and every role that we all play and there will always be someone who doesn’t like your character. I am sure you are a worthy opponent and recognize the importance of a critique as you publically display your own work. You never know who is in the audience and judging you. Maybe we will meet in the ring someday. I look forward to it.

Tuesday, November 16, 2010

Top 10 Toughest Times to be a Parent

1. Knowing when to step in.
2. Knowing when to shut your mouth.
3. Allowing the locked door, but always keep a key.
4. Dealing with a disability or illness that you have no control over.
5. Holding a hand tightly to keep them safe.
6. Letting go of the hand, but always keep the hand free if a grip is needed.
7. Praying the “I love you” is felt in their time of need.
8. When they think you are being ridiculous and you know they are being unreasonable. It happens on both sides and hopefully, these same emotions show up on different days.
9. There is no perfect age to be a parent or a child but you are not in it alone. It takes compromise on both sides.
10. Losing a parent or a child is a devastating occurrence but it is often said nothing is worse then losing a child.

The greatest time to be a parent is watching them learn and grow.
It happens in the blink of an eye on good days and bad.

Monday, November 15, 2010

Top 10 Websites Visited in the United States

(According to an Alexa.com 3 month study)

1. Google #1 in the USA and internationally. 34 % of all traffic to the site comes from the United States the average user 25-35 and over 45.

2. Facebook the average time spent on Facebook is 32 minutes and women seem to have a higher average of use under the age of 45.

3. Yahoo! the average user is female and the age under age 25 and over 45.

4. YouTube Broadcast Yourself has the highest audience among 18-24 year olds and over 65 and typically males.

5. Amazon.com is most viewed by females in the age range of 55-64.

6. Wikipedia.org the audience seems to be popular among the highly educated under 45 and over 65.

7. ebay.com browsing is done predominately at home by females and the age range is 45-64.

8. Blogger.com visitors tend to be women. 18-24.

9. Twitter.com has a higher audience among highly educated, childless women under the age of 45.

10. Craigslist.org users tend to be female and the age spread is 25-54.

Friday, November 12, 2010

Top Ten Wedding Songs with humor

And the humor behind them.

  1. From This Moment Shania Twain Oh yeah that’s when it all starts.
  2. I Finally Found Someone Bryan Adams and Barbara Streisand “Suspect” possibly a reason they have been hidden all these years.
  3. In My Life The Beatles. I like the song but you better make room.
  4. The Way You Look Tonight Frank Sinatra A beautiful song back in the day but things do change.
  5. I Can’t Help Falling in Love with You Elvis Presley. Hope they can help around the abode, though.
  6. Unforgettable Nat King Cole You are going to have to learn to forgive and forget “some” things.
  7. Breathe Faith Hill A true sign you have a snorer on your hands. Good luck with that one.
  8. Come Away With Me Nora Jones. Sounds romantic but caution after the honeymoon, they come home with you.
  9. Could it be Magic Barry Manilow Uh no, magic is just a trick.
  10. Forever Young Bob Dylan Ok this was mine and when I hear it I am reminded.

What was yours? Would you change it if you knew now what you know today?

A funny Youtube Out of respect to the wedding singer and the wedding band.

Weddings are a great time for the guests.

Thursday, November 11, 2010

Top 10 Military Stories.

My list is long today but I would provide a great disservice to these men and women if I cut any of the personal stories they have shared.

1. I grew up in a small western Pennsylvania town. I tried college, but it just wasn't for me and I needed a change and a way to get out. On a whim, I started checking into Air Force and joined. None of my friends and most of my family didn't have clue about what I was doing. I just knew that it would get me away and I'd have something to do for four years. I really didn't think beyond that. Although I didn't realize it, basic training made a big change in my life and the next time I was home (Christmas) my family was amazed at how different I was. My plan was to serve for four years, get some job experience and move on. Military service can change you in many ways. I retired from the military three years ago after more than 20 years of service. I finished my Bachelor’s degree while stationed in Germany and received my commission as an officer 3 years later. I have met a lot of people and been a lot of places. I still have friends that I was stationed with at my first assignment more than 23 years ago. The military has given me a sense of duty that I couldn’t have gotten anywhere else. I was selected for a short notice deployment in support of Iraqi Freedom/Enduring Freedom. From the time I was notified to the time I had to be in theater was about 3 weeks. I didn’t have time to think about a lot of things or spend time with family and friends. I just got done what I needed to do and went. Military service does this to you. You know that the job needs to be done and you do it. If you slack off, it could mean someone is going to lose their life.
I also have a sense of pride that I didn’t have before. The Pledge of Allegiance was just something we started our school day with and the Star Spangled Banner was just another song we sang. I’ve been to Arlington National Cemetery twice and it is a very sobering experience to see row upon row of grave markers of soldiers that have served and in many cases given their lives. I’ve sat at the Tomb of the Unknowns and watched the guards patrol. They are there 24/7 365 days a year in all weather. It may only be a symbol to some but it signifies that as long as we have men and women fighting and dying for our country, they will not be forgotten. We have an all-volunteer force in the military. The men and women that are putting their lives in danger on a daily basis volunteered by their own free will to ensure the freedom we have as citizens will endure. They are not war-mongers looking for a fight. They, above anyone else, would rather be home in the states with their families serving in a time of peace, but are willing to lay their lives on the line for our country.----Maj Palermo (Ret.)

2. I joined the military to gain job experience. What I received was something I hadn't expected; an overwhelming sense of pride in our country. When I was in school, I stood there for the pledge of allegiance or the playing of the national anthem and did my half hearted salute. Once I joined I took pride in the flag and what it stands for. One time, I was at a McDonald's and was watching an employee take down the flags. Each flag he took down he draped around his neck. When he did the same thing with the stars and stripes I went to see the manager. I was outraged with how this employee handled this symbol for our country. The manager said from now on they would use two members of his staff to pull the flags so this wouldn't happen again. If there is something I could tell everyone, next time the national anthem plays at the sporting event you are at or the flag passes by in a parade render your salute with pride and the knowledge you are lucky to live in a free country. Free, thanks to the men and women who have died for this country.-----SSgt Anne Schimke

3. I joined the military to travel the world, job experience and education. I was a Security Forces member and deployed to both Kuwait and Iraq. Iraq was the toughest thing I had ever done, I can't go into a lot of detail, but let's just say it wasn't a vacation! I think that people that are going in should be warned... there are people that don't like you, There are some that respect you. I can't count the times I was in uniform and had my hand shaken, but I also can’t count the times people spat on me or gave me a word or two. It's sad. I did my six years and I tell you what, I wouldn't trade it for the world. Even though I am happy now being a stay at home mom, I still feel pride and glad that I had joined and served our country. --- Anonymous

4. The thing that resonates with me is that after seeing the things I've seen overseas and all the places I've been, you get a deep appreciation of what THIS country stands for. Americans don't know how good they have it. I still get choked up and angry when I see Americans burn our flag. We may have our problems, but there is no place on Earth like the great USA. Serving in the USAF gave me an opportunity to see that for myself, whether helping people in 3rd world countries or getting shot at or even just having a good time with friends in great places around the world. --- Anonymous

5. I was the snoopy child in the family, the only girl. Since I was different my brothers would always tell me I was adopted. That was not true but it took me a few years of searching in our attic to finally come across my birth certificate. While I was snooping, I came across many pictures of my father’s years in the military. He never shared any of those stories, until much later in his life. He was stationed in the Philippines, he had enlisted when he was 17 years old and his mother had to sign a permission form. While he was in the Philippines he worked under the Chaplin and news got around that a ship was coming in for supplies. There was a big military supply warehouse in the Philippines. The ship had my father’s brother Sam on it and the Chaplin made arrangements for my father to go aboard and visit. Sailors were not allowed to leave the ship. My father told me he was scared to death getting in a dinghy in the dark of night and heading out to the ship. He was allowed to spend an hour with his brother. He said they were very nice to him and he said they took their picture. I remember seeing it in the attic. My father also flew back and forth to Australia during the War on the big cargo planes. He was never involved in any combat that I know of. He was a member of the 42nd Naval Construction Battalion .His division of the military the Seabee’s went in after the destruction and began the rebuilding process. There are also pictures of my father playing Santa Claus to the Filipino children and working among the Filipino’s in their garden fields. At my father’s funeral a sailor in full uniform came and played taps and presented the American flag to my mother, to me and I still can feel the chills it was a very profound moment for our family. I captured the flag. I am the snoopy one and the preserver of history. It sits in a triangular case in plain view atop a hutch in my family room. I am proud to have it. He also received the Pacific Theater Ribbon. American Theater Ribbon, Philippine Liberation Ribbon, and the Victory medal.

6. My father was in the Army, right after the war. They sent him to Japan for a year. He was a dynamite pitcher in high school, 23-0 in 3 varsity seasons. The record
still stands today. The closest he ever came to losing, his right fielder and best friend threw out 2 runners at home plate and they won the game 2-1. The Phillies and the Detroit Tigers were looking at him, but he got drafted. He played softball in the Army and when he came out, he started to throw the hardball again and hurt his arm, so, therefore I never became the son of a major leaguer. He is well known in the history of his high school baseball circle. The Army paid for 4 years at Penn State for him. --- Anonymous

7. Many years after Viet Nam I worked with a gentleman who was in that war, he saw combat and talked about being in muddy, rat infested holes. He didn’t mind telling his stories but his hands shook and even though he never drank on the job he smelled of alcohol every morning. He was a kind, good man but he never made it past 40 years old. I suspect the war took its toll. --- Anonymous

8. Lt, Commander is the highest ranking officer I ever knew personally. Commander Owsiany served in the active U.S. Navy from 1981 through 1987. During that time he was a division officer aboard the USS Dubuque from 1981 to 1982. Following that, as assistant department head (surface warfare officer) aboard the USS Saipan, from 1981 to 1985, his duties included directing up to 15 boats in beach assaults during participation in Operation Urgent Fury in Grenada. He served as executive officer in special operations aboard the USS Edenton from 1985 to 1987, when his duties included navigator, training officer, legal officer, maintenance manager and security manager. The Edenton participated in the Sixty Fleet during the 1986 Libya retaliations and Middle East operations. From 1987 to 1990, he served with the Naval Reserve as liaison officer at the Naval Weapons Station, Earle, N.J., and from 1990 to 1993; he was executive officer of Special Operations Command in the USCINSCO Theater of Operations. He began his military career with the Army Transportation Corps where he served as an information specialist/journalist from 1975 to 1978. His military awards included the Surface Warfare Pin, Armed Forces Expeditionary Medal, Army Journalist of the Year, and numerous other commendations. I was in contact with him during his entire naval career. I obtained all this information from an obituary, he never boasted of his accomplishments. I only knew him as a good friend. He was killed by a drunk driver in Arizona in 1993. His influence on me shows up a lot in my lists. If he were here today I am sure he would have many heroic stories to share but then again, he was a modest man. I was and will always be immensely proud of him.---a good friend

9. I joined the US 82nd Airborne Paratroopers right out of high school when the United States was just getting out of Vietnam. I always believed in the military, my brother was a fighter pilot in Vietnam so I was always aware of what was going on there. I was upset about the way people treated the returning Vietnam vets. There was no glory. Basic training was rough. Many of the drill sergeants had been in Vietnam and at that time they were allowed to smack you around. Even though I was never in Vietnam, because I was wearing the uniform certain places in the United States I traveled to people were very mean to the military and I was spat upon. You could always tell a World War II veteran because they would come up to you and shake your hand and thank you for your service. The 82nd Airborne Troopers are known to be on call and available in 24 hours. I saw a lot of places I was in Panama and Ft. Drum. I learned about risk and it was something that prepared me for my future career as an undercover narcotics officer. I never sustained any injuries during my military service but I was shot 6 years after I became a police officer. It is a very dangerous job and my military experience helped prepare me for that. ---Ed G.

10. Yesterday, I had the honor of being in the presence of Ed Kane, a survivor of Pearl Harbor and his wife Angelina. I was awestruck. They now reside in Riddle Village in Media but have lived in California and Florida and Mrs. Kane remarked that she loves it in Pennsylvania because she is close to family and loves the change of seasons. I just sat there for 2 ½ hours and listened. Ed has been interviewed before by the newspaper with a huge two page article, he is that amazing of a man. He began by telling me that on March 11th, 1940 he and six buddies were sitting around in South Philly drinking a gallon of Mission Bell wine, there were no jobs so they decided the next day to go to the Federal Building at 4th and Market and enlist in the Navy. The country was not yet at war and the military was selective. Only 2 out of 27 were accepted and he was one of them. Another friend, Jimmy Crystal was not accepted because his bite was uneven. Two weeks later Ed had to go through the same physical and he failed. He was told he had a perforated ear drum. He went to a medical facility at 18th and Lombard in Philadelphia and they discovered it was just a build up of ear wax and he was given a clean bill of health and now accepted by the military. On March 26th he headed to Newport, Rhode Island for 3 months of training and was then sent to the Philadelphia Navy Yard to board his first ship, the USS Doran 185. Ed could readily recall each and every ship he had been on and the call numbers that preceded the name. While aboard the Doran, their ship was to sail to Massachusetts to be part of a procession of ships that were passed by President Roosevelt’s yacht. While the President was passing the command went out “man to rail”. He was a new sailor and he got nervous and started running around, he thought it meant, man overboard. In actuality it meant to stand along the rail at attention. After that he sailed to Nova Scotia to turn the ship over to England which was a common practice to do when we were not at war. His next assignment took him to Long Beach, California, his next ship was named the USS Worden, and not long after he was there word got around that they were headed to Honolulu. He was very excited to go to this exotic island until he got there and saw there was a Sear and Roebuck store. Then it didn’t seem so special. The routine of the ships during peace time was to go out to sea during the day and return the same day. The exercises began to increase and they would sometimes stay out to sea 4-5 days, then the port holes were welded up so they wouldn’t sink. On Pearl Harbor Day the USS Worden was parked along with the Macdonough, Phelps and the Hull. His ship was in for repair the boilers were being worked on. He worked in the boiler area. He had just come back from liberty at 2am and they thought they were watching a circus it was just not sinking in. A Japanese plane dropped a bomb 30 yards from the four destroyers that were parked together. They had no idea how they would have missed those ships. One of the gunners on the Worden shot down one of the Japanese planes with a 50 caliber machine gun. He laughs at recalling the Pearl Harbor movie Pacific and the artillery they used to depict the story. He said “we didn’t have anything fancy like that”. His story does not end there and to hear him tell it is fascinating. The Worden and he as a crewman were part of the Midway, Guadal Canal, Coral Sea, and the New Hebrides battles in 1942. In January of 1943 while the ship was part of an advanced security detail off Amchitka Island in the Aleutians in Alaska in unchartered waters they become stuck on some rocks. The USS Dewey tried to pull them out but they were unsuccessful and the next thing he recalls is that they were given the command to abandon ship. He jumped into the 34 degree water and lost the sight of the ship from the height of the waves. He survived and had a desire to live when he heard the voice from another crew member saying to him “Eddie I have your blues”. Apparently the blues were an expensive part of a sailor’s uniform that they didn’t used every day. He was inspired and soon was retrieved out of the water. Ed received a 30 day leave after that. The Worden broke in two and 14 men lost their lives that day. His naval stories do not end there. He was then sent to Orange, Texas, his next ship was the USS Murray, it was while aboard this ship that he met a fellow South Philly kid and they became very good friends and later became brother-in-laws. This is how Ed met Angelina, they all grew up in South Philly but prior to military service and the war they did not know one another. On September 11th, 1943 his brother, Tom was killed while serving on the USS Rowan. It was attacked by German eboats off the coast of Salerno, Italy. Ed was out to sea and heard the news about his brother from a letter his mother sent to him. His brother was only 20 years old. Mr. Kane recalls vividly that while he was on the USS Murray they had an assignment called “pick a duty”. After the Battle of Tarawa they were to pick up nine marines bodies for a military burial at sea. He said the bodies were all bloated from lying in the water and he will never forget the smell of the bodies. Mr. Kane loved his time serving his country and would have enlisted again after six years of service had it not been for his father-in-law. He gave him an ultimatum pick the Navy or pick my daughter. As he calls her, he chose the angel of his life, Angelina. She is a delightful woman, I enjoyed meeting and talking with them both. I believe he made the correct choice. I asked him, what he thought about the dropping of the bomb and he said, “Listen if the President hadn’t made that decision and we invaded Japan, millions of American lives would have been lost. The Japanese never would have given up”. I also asked if harbored any ill feelings against the Japanese and he said “no”. He purchased a Toyota years later and had a Pearl Harbor survivor sticker attached to the bumper and someone remarked to him, “that’s funny a Pearl Harbor sticker on a Toyota” and his response, “it was a great car.” He also wanted it mentioned that a few years ago while he was in Media for a Memorial Day Parade dressed in the custom Pearl Harbor survivor uniform, a flowered Hawaiian shirt, white pants, white shoes and a commemorative cap, two young men about 13 years old said, “Hey Pearl Harbor survivor, I know where that is, it is a fishing town in Florida”. It makes him sad that they do not teach geography and history in this country in our schools anymore. ---Told to me by Mr. Ed Kane himself, a true survivor.

There is a website oldchesterpa.com that has a fascinating collection of the history of Chester. It has a veteran’s section where you can submit your own history or record with pride that someone in your family served their country. It is a fine place to boast your pride. I am unaware of other sites that offer this opportunity and welcome anyone to supply that information if they have it.

Wednesday, November 10, 2010

Top 10 Veteran’s Day Reminders

1. According to the United States Department of Veterans Affairs, November 1919, President Wilson first proclaim November 11th to be the day to commemorate Armistice Day with these words, "To us in America, the reflections of Armistice Day will be filled with solemn pride in the heroism of those who died in the country’s service and with gratitude for the victory, both because of the thing from which it has freed us and because of the opportunity it has given America to show her sympathy with peace and justice in the councils of the nations…"

2. Also found on the VA site, Armistice Day was primarily a day set aside to honor veterans of World War I, but in 1954, after World War II had required the greatest mobilization of soldiers, sailors, Marines and airmen in the Nation’s history; after American forces had fought aggression in Korea, the 83rd Congress, at the urging of the veterans service organizations, amended the Act of 1938 by striking out the word "Armisticeet" and inserting in its place the word "Veterans." With the approval of this legislation (Public Law 380) on June 1, 1954, November 11th became a day to honor American veterans of all wars.

3.The Tomb of the Unknown Revolutionary War Soldier is located in Washington Square in Philadelphia, PA features an eternal flame and a statue of George Washington looking towards Independence Hall. The wall of the memorial includes these words: "Freedom is a light for which many men have died in darkness". "In unmarked graves within this square lie thousands of unknown soldiers of Washington's Army who died of wounds and sickness during the Revolutionary War". The plaque upon the tomb of the Unknown Soldier reads: "Beneath this stone rests a soldier of Washington's army who died to give you liberty". According to us.history.org after the decision to erect a memorial in 1954, a body of a Colonial soldier had to be found. In 1956, an archaeological team was brought in. They dug nine holes mostly in the northwest quadrant of the square. The first bodies the archaeologists discovered belonged to three paupers, identifiable as such by canvas sheets serving as their grave clothes. Some exploratory holes found single graves, not the mass trenches which were being looked for. Finally, a mass grave was found. Within they found the undisturbed remains of a male about twenty years old within the vestiges of an oak coffin. The skull had evidence of a "plow wound" which could have been caused by a musket ball. This would be the body used for the Unknown Soldier. Archaeologists and historians were fairly certain that this disinterred body was that of a Revolutionary War soldier, one vexing question still remains: Was the body that of a British soldier or a lad who had just started calling himself by a new name — American?

4. The Unknown Soldier Of the Confederate States of America Tomb is located in Beauvoir, Biloxi, Mississippi and holds the remains of a unidentified Confederate Soldier of the American Civil War. The remains were discovered in late 1979 by Rick Forte, Chairman of the Combined Boards of Beauvoir on a battlefield of the Vicksburg Campaign. The discovery led to the establishment of the Tomb of the Unknown Confederate Soldier in the Confederate Veterans Cemetery at Beauvoir, in Biloxi, Mississippi. The soldier's remains were buried there in a cypress casket in 1980. The tomb, inscribed "Known but to God", was dedicated on June 6, 1981.The remains were carefully authenticated from artifacts accompanying them, but the identity of the soldier, his unit, and his place of origin are not known. On June 6, 1981, the Tomb of the Unknown Confederate Soldier was unveiled. Its two sides are inscribed: The Unknown Soldier of the Confederate States of America. The head of the tomb bears the inscription: Known but to God. Atop of the tomb is the Great Seal of the Confederate States of America, and at its foot is a stanza from the poem CSA by Father Abram Joseph Ryan, poet-priest of the Confederacy. Ah! fearless on many a day for us. They stood in front of the fray for us,

And held the foeman at bay for us;

And tears should fall

Fore'er o'er all

Who fell while wearing the Gray for us.

5. Tomb of the Unknowns at Arlington National Cemetery. I have been to Arlington many times. I find it to be a very solemn place rich in American culture and history. On the website for Arlington National Cemetery you can learn about them all.

6. The Unknown of World War I On Memorial Day, 1921, four unknowns were exhumed from four World War I American cemeteries in France. U.S. Army Sgt. Edward F. Younger, who was wounded in combat, highly decorated for valor and received the Distinguished Service Medal in "The Great War, the war to end all wars," selected the Unknown Soldier of World War I from four identical caskets at the city hall in Chalons-sur-Marne, France, Oct. 24, 1921. Sgt. Younger selected the unknown by placing a spray of white roses on one of the caskets. He chose the third casket from the left. The chosen unknown soldier was transported to the United States aboard the USS Olympia. Those remaining were interred in the Meuse Argonne Cemetery, France. The Unknown Soldier lay in state in the Capitol Rotunda from his arrival in the United States until Armistice Day, 1921. On Nov. 11, 1921, President Warren G. Harding officiated at the interment ceremonies at the Memorial Amphitheater at Arlington National Cemetery. As a side note: The USS Olympia in 1957, the US Navy ceded title to the Cruiser Olympia Association, which restored the ship to its 1898 configuration. Since then Olympia has been a museum ship in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, which is now part of the Independence Seaport Museum. It is the oldest steel warship still afloat. However, the Museum, has been unable to fund essential maintenance for the old ship, and attempts to secure outside funding have failed. As of 2010, Olympia's future is uncertain; the museum may have to sell the ship for scrap or sink her as an artificial reef.

7. The Unknown of World War II and Korea On Aug. 3, 1956, President Dwight D. Eisenhower signed a bill to select and pay tribute to the unknowns of World War II and Korea. The selection ceremonies and the interment of these unknowns took place in 1958. The World War II Unknown was selected from remains exhumed from cemeteries in Europe, Africa, Hawaii and the Philippines. Two unknowns from World War II, one from the European Theater and one from the Pacific Theater, were placed in identical caskets and taken aboard the USS Canberra, a guided-missile cruiser resting off the Virginia capes. Navy Hospitalman 1st Class William R. Charette, then the Navy's only active-duty Medal of Honor recipient, selected the Unknown Soldier of World War II. The remaining casket received a solemn burial at sea.

8. Four unknown Americans who died in the Korean War were disinterred from the National Cemetery of the Pacific in Hawaii. Army Master Sgt. Ned Lyle made the final selection. Both caskets arrived in Washington May 28, 1958, where they lay in the Capitol Rotunda until May 30. That morning, they were carried on caissons to Arlington National Cemetery. President Eisenhower awarded each the Medal of Honor, and the Unknowns were interred in the plaza beside their of World War I comrade.

9. The Unknown of Vietnam The Unknown service member from the Vietnam War was designated by Medal of Honor recipient U.S. Marine Corps Sgt. Maj. Allan Jay Kellogg Jr. during a ceremony at Pearl Harbor, Hawaii, May 17, 1984. The Vietnam Unknown was transported aboard the USS Brewton to Alameda Naval Base, Calif. The remains were sent to Travis Air Force Base, Calif., May 24. The Vietnam Unknown arrived at Andrews Air Force Base, Md., the next day. Many Vietnam veterans and President and Mrs. Ronald Reagan visited the Vietnam Unknown in the U.S. Capitol. An Army caisson carried the Vietnam Unknown from the Capitol to the Memorial Amphitheater at Arlington National Cemetery on Memorial Day, May 28, 1984. President Reagan presided over the funeral, and presented the Medal of Honor to the Vietnam Unknown. The president also acted as next of kin by accepting the interment flag at the end of the ceremony. The interment flags of all Unknowns at the Tomb of the Unknowns are on view in the Memorial Display Room. The Memorial Bridge leading from Washington, D.C., to Virginia is lined with a joint-service cordon as the remains of the Vietnam War Unknown are taken by motor escort to Arlington National Cemetery for interment in the Tomb of the Unknowns. (The remains of the Vietnam Unknown were exhumed May 14, 1998. Based on mitochondrial DNA testing, DoD scientists identified the remains as those of Air Force 1st Lt. Michael Joseph Blassie, who was shot down near An Loc, Vietnam, in 1972. It has been decided that the crypt that contained the remains of the Vietnam Unknown will remain vacant.)

10. Veterans Day is not only a day to remember all those who have lost their lives but also a day to observe all veterans who have served our honor, the honor of the United States around the world. Yesterday I shared my experience visiting the past, tomorrow I have the privilege of sharing with you stories from those who currently or recently have served our country.

Yesterday my husband and I went to the Tomb of the Unknown Soldier on the American Revolution. Washington Square is a beautiful area. These 4 young men were taking pictures with a keen interest and they were not speaking English to each other. I was waiting to take a picture of my own and I asked if they would like a picture of all of them together and they did speak English and smiled and said yes. I was later to find out they were from Venice, Italy, taking a 2 week tour of the United States. Their trip began on Monday in New York City, Wednesday was Philadelphia, they were headed to Washington D.C., Savanah, Georgia and the Key West, Florida. Our country is rich in history and has a great international appeal. We should be proud.