Wednesday, November 30, 2011

Top 10 Mark Twain Quotations and Dedication

Purely by mistake, I came across this number one quote on Tuesday evening by one of my favorite humorist and I sought out a few more.

1. "Twenty Years from now you will be more disappointed by the things that you didn't do than by the ones you did do.  So throw off the bowlines.  Sail away from the safe harbor. Catch the trade winds in your sails. Explore, Dream, Discover."

2. "Keep away from those who try to belittle your ambitions. Small people always do that, but the really great make you believe that you too can become great."

3. "Get your facts first, then you can distort them as you please."

4. "There was never yet an uninteresting life.  Such a thing is an impossibility.  Inside the dullest exterior there is a drama, a comedy and a tragedy."

5. "Always do right, that will gratify some people and astonish the rest."

6. "The secret of getting ahead is getting started.  The secret in getting started is breaking all those complex overwhelming tasks into small manageable tasks, and then starting on the first one."

7. "The difference between the right word and the almost right word is the difference between lightening and the lightening bug."

8. "You can't depend on your judgment when your imagination is out of focus."

9. "A thing long expected takes the form of the unexpected when at last it arrives."

10. "Where prejudice exists it always discolors our thoughts."

Google is my homepage and they have little drawings dedicated to the date.  You have to click or roll over them to find out what they mean.  On Wednesday, I discovered....

November 30th is the birth date of this visionary and I have just completed my 2nd Annual "Write a Novel in A Month" and I dedicate it to Mr. Mark Twain. He would be 176 years young. His writings have always been an inspiration to me. I have found traces of him throughout my research of European travel.

Happy Belated Birthday and thank you for your words of wisdom.

Read "Diaries of Adam and Eve" by Mark Twain it is the best description of a relationship that I have ever read.

Top 10 American Airlines files for Chapter 11

Be kind to YOUR Flight Attendant

1. Being a Flight Attendant is a fun and exciting job but you don't do it for the money!

2. The pay varies per airline but the approximate salary is $20/hour with only a 79-hour guarantee of work per month. A potential to earn $18,000 a year.

3. Flight Attendants who work international routes, speak a second language, work high time (over 100 hours) and have seniority with a major carrier have the potential to earn up to $80,000 a year, if not more, but this is rare.

4. Flight Attendants are only paid for time in the air. Flight time does not include deplaning, delayed scheduled departures and waiting in airports for connecting flights and layovers.

5. True they can eventually get great perks, flying friends and family at a discount.

6.  A typical work day is 12 hours, with an average 10 hour layover. They can see the world, if they are not too tired after waiting in the airport half the day for the next flight or only being able to squeeze in a half hour dinner in Paris because they have a very early flight and need to get some sleep.

7. According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, "Median annual wages of flight attendants were $35,930 in May 2008. The middle 50 percent earned between $28,420 and $49,910. The lowest 10 percent earned less than $20,580, and the highest 10 percent earned more than $65,350."

8. It is the public perception that they have cushy jobs. All they have to do is serve you a drink, sometimes you get a bag of peanuts.  It's not their fault the food budget is low for 2nd class citizens.  They still smile at everyone and treat all passengers as equals.

9.  We are not talking about fly by night employees.  Their job description is that they are there for the comfort and safety of those flying by air.

10. They are all professionally trained for a medical emergency and now risk their lives every day in a profession that has been threatened if not destroyed by terrorist attacks. They must get checked out on all medical, CPR and AED procedures every year...memorize the place of every single safety and medical equipment on every airplane and check those items EACH AND EVERY TIME they board a new airplane...and if something is missing or used they have to write a report before boarding can begin...

In case you have been pre-occupied, this type of news always seems to come out around the holidays.

How many more jobs will be placed in jeopardy before this year ends on a sour note?


I obtained some of the information used above by reading a blog by Heather Poole, an airline insider.  She writes interesting blogs, check her out!

Tuesday, November 29, 2011

Top 10 Catalog Shopping for T-Shirts

These are the ones that caught my eye.

1. I Am Not Short I'm Fun Size

2. D.A.D.D. Dads Against Daughters Dating

3.i'm cute...let's put me in charge!

4. Wine improves with age. I improve with Wine.

5. Irony. The opposite of wrinkly.

6. Big or small let's save them all (with a little pink ribbon just before the "let's".)

7. Let Me Drop Everything and Work on Your Problem.

8. Be Careful!Or You Will End Up in My Novel and In My Novel I Am Plotting Against You.

9. When In Doubt...Mumble!

10. The Hokey Pokey Clinic.  A place to turn yourself around.

Do you read peoples T-Shirts? I do it all the time.  I think T-Shirts make statements.

All of these T-Shirts and many more can be found in a catalog called Favorites and Signals that arrived in my mailbox.

Monday, November 28, 2011

Top 10 The Short Changed Fall Season

1. Depending on your allergies, I guess the debate could go on.  Which is the prettiest season?  I like the spring and welcome the warmer weather but nothing is more perfect then a beautiful fall afternoon traipse through nature.

2. I went for a stroll in Ridley Creek State Park one afternoon when I was getting beat up with comments in my blog and took some pictures.  Yes, I read the comments....sometimes.

3. I needed a little fresh air and some pleasant scenery.

4. It was an interesting stroll to me because I have never walked in the woods by myself before.

5. Walking along the trail, I pondered to myself.....was I more threatened with no one around or when some one passed me on the trail?

6. It was very quiet and a little spooky at times with no one around on an empty trail.

7. Every once in a while I would be passed by some one walking their dog or it was a jogger.

8. Maybe it is just me and my sensitive knees but joggers are never smiling.  They seem to be red-faced and gasping for air.  I have tried it, I understand their commitment.  I myself always have hit the wall and was only capable of making it to the next telephone pole.  So you have my respect.

9. I prefer a leisurely stroll in route to my destination and the power walk on the way back.  I like to take in the sights.  Moving too fast you just might miss the glistening sun reflecting the mirror image on the water.

10. We are fortunate to live in the area that we live in.  We can enjoy all four seasons.  Sure I'd love to live on a deserted island and get away from all the mean people but I would miss the changing of the seasons.

In case you missed it, before the snow sneaks up on us, here is what the autumn leaves looked like at Ridley Creek State Park one that day in the fall when someone was trying to beat me down. Mother Nature was there to comfort me when human nature tried to ruin my day.

Time for the hustle and bustle.  More traffic on the road, everybody in a hurry, places to go, things to do, people to meet.  Just stop once in a while, let the calm come to you or go out and find it.  It is good for the soul.

Take a walk in the woods and hold someones hand.

Friday, November 25, 2011

Top 10 Needy Songs for those in Need to Shop

On Black Friday bargains are a plenty but stop and ask yourself "do you really need it?"

1. I Need You Ameica

2. Baby I Need Your Lovin The Four Tops

3. You're All I Need Marvin Gaye and Tammi Terrell

4. I Need A Lover John Cougar Mellencamp

5. All You Need Is Love The Beatles

6. If I Needed Someone Eric Clapton (tribute to George Harrison)

7. All I Need Is A Miracle Mike and the Mechanics

8.Superwoman (Where Were You When I Needed You) Stevie Wonder

9. Where Were You When I Needed You The Grass Roots

10. All I Need Radiohead

Thursday, November 24, 2011

Top 10 The Alluring Sales Pitch

For all you brave souls that will go out tomorrow on "Black Friday the Biggest Bargain Shopping Day of the Year", watch for the signs....

1. First What are your odds here?  You can be first in line, first to own, first to drive?  Maybe it is best to let someone else try it first.   I can think of a million examples of those.

2. The Best I really don't understand this one. Doesn't everyone want the best? I have never seen the worst advertised. That might get my attention. What's wrong with it? The worst, now that is something. I got the worse one!  Somebody will be jealous. Sell it on eBay later.

3. Huge C'mon where ya gonna put that thing? No matter how big your space is, less always seems like more. The only exception is ice cream.

4. Original I do not believe I have ever own anything original with the exception of the purse I made out of an old pair of jeans.  Where is that?  It would made a great gift.  I beat it has holes in it too, which should increase the value. Bargain.

5. Attention I love the attention seekers, blue light specials, blue plate specials.  The strobe lights hurt my eyes, but I will always check out what all the fuss is about.  I love the announcer at Pathmark.  I think he should call the football games.

6. Today Only Granted you are taking your chances but what about tomorrow, next week or even next month when the holiday rush is over.  What are they going to do with all that leftover stuff?

7. Biggest In some cases size does matter.  I would fall for this, if it were a box of chocolate covered pretzels.

8. Smallest Nobody said puny and a cute little knick, knack sitting on the shelf is a lot easier to move around when you dust, especially if you live in a compact house.

9. While supply lasts I always find this is the most dangerous one and should be avoided.  Everybody is going to fight for this one.  It is like oil!

10. Cheapest  You might not want to mention this to the receiver with pride.  Oh yeah, I got you the cheapest one!  Just thinking out loud.

Have fun but remember, stay in budget, most likely if you shop today, that credit card bill will come in just about the same time the holiday occurs.   It can kinda take the merry out of it if you go too far in debt.

Every one touts buy American.  I don't have a problem with that but we do live in a global market.  Our goods are sold internationally as well.  I am more of a fan of buy local and support jobs in your own neighborhood.  Too many small businesses are closing and jobs are being lost. I've been to the local mall and it looks like a ghost town.

As a footnote, I have found just because something costs more doesn't mean it is better, just better recognition and better marketing people.

I'm curious to see how the numbers will fall this year. 

Do you think there will be an improvement?
Record numbers?
It seems that is an individual call rather then a political statement.

Wednesday, November 23, 2011

Top 10 Talking Turkey

1. How to Safely cook a Turkey from the USDA Food Safety. If you can't do this maybe you should get yourself invited somewhere.

2. Wild turkeys are native to North America. Once I saw group of turkeys, maybe 3 or 4 just standing around in the middle of the street in my neighborhood.  No joke, they hang out in Delaware County.  Not so much during the Thanksgiving season, though.

3. Males, called toms or gobblers, have a large, featherless, reddish head, red throat, and red wattles on the throat and neck.  We all know what a wattle is right?  For those lucky enough not to, click on the link for further reference.

4. Females, called hens, have feathers that are duller overall, in shades of brown and gray.  I have a feeling the tom turkey has something to do with making the ladies shady.

5. Males turkeys are polygamous, mating with as many hens as they can. Women might also refer to these men turkeys as pigs. Just sayin. I'm not sure how the female turkey feels about this. Has there been a study?

6. Males may be seen courting in groups, often with the dominant male gobbling, spreading their tail feathers (strutting), drumming/booming and spitting. Ever been in the presence of one of these guys?  Some hens go for that.

7. Turkey Hunting Season ends in Pennsylvania on November 26th.  Run Turkey Run!

8. The Wild Turkey, throughout its range, plays a significant role in the cultures of many Native American tribes all over North America. Outside of the Thanksgiving feast, it is a favorite meal in Eastern tribes. Eastern Native American tribes consumed both the eggs and meat, sometimes turning the latter into a type of jerky to preserve it and make it last through cold weather. The Native Americans have provided habitats by burning down portions of forests to create artificial meadows which would attract mating birds, and thus give a clear shot to hunters. The feathers of turkeys also often made their way into the rituals and headgear of many tribes. Many leaders, such as Catawba chiefs, traditionally wore turkey feather headdresses.[12] Significant peoples of several tribes, including Muscogee Creek and Wampanoag, wore turkey feather cloaks.[13] The Turkey Clan is one of the three Lenape clans.[14] Movements of wild turkeys inspired the Caddo tribe's turkey dance.[15]

9. Predators of eggs and nestlings include Raccoons, Virginia Opossums, Striped Skunks, Gray foxes, raptors, Groundhogs, other rodents, spotted skunks, rat snakes, Gopher Snakes, pinesnakes, Predators of both adults and young include Coyotes, Bobcats, Cougars, Golden Eagles and (with the exception of males) Great Horned Owls, Dogs, and red foxes. Humans are now the leading predator of adult turkeys.  True story.[8][9]

10. If you are still in a quandary about what to do with that bird is an excellent source and Food Network can help with the sides.

I hope everyone gets a chance to spend a few precious hours with family and or friends.  Don't overindulge.  We are only given one official day to give thanks. Be generous with those portions.

I have been hosting Thanksgiving dinner for about twenty years now. It is a lot of work but I have a good turkey to help me.  It is my favorite holiday.

Happy Thanksgiving!

Welcome Home All College Students
especially mine.

Tuesday, November 22, 2011

Top 10 Thoughts about JFK and Dealey Plaza the Scene of the Crime

No Photographs are allowed inside the Sixth Floor Museum and shot glasses were not permitted to be sold in the gift shop as of 2010 when I was last there.

1. The assassination of JFK will always be one of the most heavily debated topics.

2. It certainly fires up emotions.

3. I profess only to present to you what I have seen.

4. My list last year was submitted by someone who has made the quest to find the truth his life goal.

5. Going to the site of this tragedy is an experience for all Americans, especially if you remember the day it happened.  I was so young yet it made a profound impact on me.

6. The Museum presents many facts and viewpoints of that day. Do they conclude it was a lone gunman?  The facts presented heavily lean in that direction.

7. You can follow the chronological events in the headphones during the tour.  It steps you back it time.

8. The photographs inside are amazing. Although, you can not stand at the exact window where the shots came from (it is enclosed in Plexiglas) but you can stand right next to it and look down as Oswald could have done.

9. There is a walking tour outside you can take using your cell phone.  It is very well worth the additional cost.  Being inside is one vantage point.  Walking the grounds and the area where the people watched in horror is another.

10.  You would think we would know the truth by now, yet every year there is a "new" special disputing Oswald acted alone or that it was a conspiracy.

I have made up a slide show of Dealey Plaza and the surrounding area that you might see if you visit there.  I was surprised when I went there.  It was a relatively small area, only the crime was larger then life.

If you have visited the Sixth Floor Museum, what as your impression?

Monday, November 21, 2011

Top 10 Hello Songs on November 21st World Hello Day

Today November 21st, is the 39th annual World Hello Day. It began in 1973 in response to the conflict between Egypt and Israel.  The object is to promote communication. To participate in this day it is relatively painless.  Say hello to 10 people.  There are no rules, you can send a chain "hello" email, post "hello" on Facebook, pick up the phone, hello,send a text,  blog about it or even tweet "hello".  Personally, I feel nothing beats eye contact and while you are at it, smile and hold the door for some one.  It is contagious. I have seen it happen.  It brings hope. "Hello" opens doors. Try it!
A listing of 10 songs I clicked on Youtube, just saying 'hello".

1. Hello It's Me Todd Rundgren

2. Hello Goodbye The Beatles 

3. Hello, I Love You The Doors

4. Hello Again Neil Diamond

5. Hello Lionel Richie

6. Hello Stranger Yvonne Elliman

7. Hello Like Before Bill Withers

8. Hello Evanscence

9. Hello Young Lovers Sammy Davis Jr. (this song is on the soundtrack of The King and I, which is actually playing at the Walnut Street Theatre in Philadelphia thru January 8th).  Personal opinion, buy the soundtrack if you go. They are all good songs and it is a great play! I saw the King, himself (Yul Brenner) play the role in New York in the early 80's. Phenonenal. Maybe "A Puzzlement" is my favorite song.

10. Hello Mother Hello Father Allan Sherman (this is a Boomer's song meant to share with a smile).

According to the CIA World Factbook

In the world, a rank ordering of languages starting with the largest and sometimes includes the percent of total population speaking that language.

Mandarin Chinese, Traditional Chinese 您好 12.44%, Spanish ¡Hola 4.85%, English Hello 4.83%, Arabic 3.25%مرحبا  Hindi नमस्ते 2.68%, Bengali ওহে 2.66%, Portuguese Olá  2.62%, Russian привет  2.12%, Japanese  こんにちは 1.8%, Standard German Hallo  1.33%, Javanese 1.25% (2009 est.) translations found through google, translate.
note: percents are for "first language" speakers only; the six UN languages - Arabic, Chinese (Mandarin), English, French, Russian, and Spanish (Castilian) - are the mother tongue or second language of about half of the world's population, and are the official languages in more than half the states in the world.

In the United States, English 82.1%, Spanish 10.7%, other Indo-European 3.8%, Asian and Pacific island 2.7%, other 0.7% (2000 census).
note: Hawaiian is an official language in the state of Hawaii, Aloha.

Friday, November 18, 2011

Top 10 Songs About Men For International Men's Day

November 19th is International Men's Day.  It is celebrated in over 50 countries.

How do women feel about that? An introduction "It's Raining Men"  sung by The Weather Girls written by Paul Jabara and Paul Shaffer (of "Late Night With David Letterman" fame).

1. Mr. Tambourine Man Bob Dylan

2. Rocket Man Elton John

3. Man in the Moon R. E. M.

4. Piano Man Billy Joel

5. Soul Man Sam and Dave

6. Better Man Pearl Jam

7. Southern Man Crosby, Stills, Nash andYoung

8. Man in the Mirror  Michael Jackson

9. Real Man Todd Rundgren

10.  I'm A Man Spencer Davis Group

It's a man's world. Enjoy your day! 

Can you think of a song with a "man" written all over it?

Thursday, November 17, 2011

Top 10 Ways To Quit Smoking

Today is the 36th Annual Great American Smokeout!

Nobody likes to be a quitter but quitting smoking can make you become a winner!

Ways to quit!

1. Cold Turkey

2. The Patch

3. Nicotine Gum

4. Hypnosis

5. Electronic Cigarette

6. Set a date and stick to it

7. Cut back, wean yourself off.

8. Attend a smoking cessation group.

9. Seek professional help, see a therapist.  It is an addiction get the help you need.  It is not a weakness to ask for help, it is a sign of strength.

10. Never ever touch another cigarette again, be proud of you accomplishments.  You fought a tiger and you won!

It would be difficult to say which method is the best, every one is different.  The important thing is to try until you find the one that works for you!

Links of interest that offer ideas and solutions.

American Cancer Society

American Heart Association

Smoke Free

Any success stories or methods you would like to share?

Wednesday, November 16, 2011

Top 10 Burning Questions in the PSU child abuse scandal:

BY KEVIN CIRILLI (guest writer)

1. Will Joe Paterno testify? Sports journalists covering JoePa at post-game press conferences know he can be anything but polite. This could come as soon as Dec. 7, Sandusky's scheduled preliminary hearing.

2. Will Graham Spanier leave Penn State? If JoePa was the heart of Penn State, Spanier was the brains. Despite resigning as university president, Spanier is still a tenured professor.

3. Did Mike McQueary do more? NBC News reports that quarterback coach Mike McQueary emailed players that he did try to stop the alleged incident that occured with Sandusky and a boy in the shower.

4. What will the political fall out be for Gov. Corbett? In conservative Centre County, where PSU is located, JoePa is still a beloved figure. Corbett, a Republican, supports the Board of Trustees decision to fire Paterno. This could make him (and other politicians who spoke out against Paterno) be viewed as a leader who rushed to judgement.

5. What did Jack Raykovitz know? The CEO of Sandusky's Second Mile resigned last week but gave no reason as to why except for a statement released from Second Mile's Board of Trustees.

6. What will the civil suit say? Sources close to forthcoming civil suit say Penn State university should've done more. Expect floods of pending litigation.

7. How connected were PSU and Sandusky's Second Mile? Nearly every journalist covering this case is looking into whether there's truth to that horrific rumor, as of now unsubstantiated, that Sandusky pimped-out Second Mile boys to wealthy donors.

8. How many kids will denounce allegations? Sandusky's attorney told Bob Costas he expects some will.

9. How many more kids will come forward? There's been widespread reports that since the story broke, more than 10 new incidents have been reported to the authorities.

10. Who will get charged next? Multiple sources connected with the case believe more criminal charges could be filed against new individuals within the coming weeks.

-- A Delco native, Kevin Cirilli is a journalist who will graduate early from PSU this December. The former campus news editor to PSU's student newspaper, he's contributed reporting on the Sandusky scandal for multiple publications, including Newsweek and The Philadelphia Inquirer. View his website here.

Tuesday, November 15, 2011

Top 10 Why the Living Will

It used to be the unnerving when, the probing question at the doctors was not, "How are you feeling?"  "Do you smoke and do you drink", are pretty standard now, but the new one is..."Do you have a living will?"  Maybe it is an age related question but nonetheless, it is an important one.  Especially if...

1. You are not a kid anymore?  No one wants to imagine a young person's premature death.

2. You are of sound mind.  Better to make these choices when you still know what you want and it makes sense.

3. You just go socked with some bad news.  You have a terminal disease.

4. Living wills and health care proxies, are for everyone 18 and over.

5. POLST Pennsylvania Orders for Life Sustaining Treatment addresses a patients specific, current condition. POLST are instructions that "take pressure off other folks". You decide.

6. Out of Hospital Do Not Resuscitate (DNR) orders.

7. Hospice Care  I have found that through their assistance you have a bridge that helps hold those difficult days together. Someone that really looks out for both sides.

8. Palliative care is a specialized area of health care that focuses on relieving and preventing the suffering of patients. Unlike hospice care, palliative medicine is appropriate for patients in all disease stages, including those undergoing treatment for curable illnesses and those living with chronic diseases, as well as patients who are nearing the end of life

9. Funeral Arrangements and payment are another consideration.  It certainly isn't cheap to die anymore and if you have certain wishes like cremation, a mausoleum, gold plated box and can afford it, pay it in advance and then there is no discussion without your input and no added expense on your survivors.

10. No one wants to think about their impending death or that of those they love but someday it will happen. Being prepared for the worse can sometimes ease the mind, at a difficult time when you rarely are thinking straight.

November is Hospice and Palliative Care has a lot of information that you may find useful.

 If you don't have a living will at least start the conversation.  No one lives forever and it is a tough burden to leave those decisions up to the ones you love. It can relieve internal and external turmoil between family members and ease the guilt.

Monday, November 14, 2011

Top 10 Switching Channels UGH!

1.  Did you watch that Eagles game?  UGH! Can't they quit while they are ahead? Some one missed that memo.

2. I guess there is always basketball.  UGH!  They are still on strike!  Talk is cheap.  When is enough is enough!

3. Lets Go Flyers!

4. Who is comforting Kim today?

5. At least her brother is still "Dancing with the Stars?" 

6. Is there a doctor in the "House"? UGH!

7. Now I understand how they got the title "Desperate Housewives".

8. Maybe the Republican debates are On Demand?  Candidate number 2, anybody want to go water boarding??? UGH!

9. Dishes and dirty laundry seems more appealing at this point.

10. Too bad it gets dark so early or I would go rake leaves! I Think I Will Occupy Myself With a Good Book!

Friday, November 11, 2011

Veteran's Day Parade Media, Pennsylvania 2011

Top 10 11-11-11 Magical Songs

There is a 11:11 phenomenon and you can find plenty of explanations good and bad on the internet.  Personally, I find everyday has its phenonmenal moments. Have you ever heard the one about dimes and pennies?

1. Do You Believe in Magic? Lovin Spoonful

2. Could It Be Magic?  Barry Manilow

3. Every Little Thing She Does Is Magic The Police

4. Magic Carpet Ride Steppenwolf

5. Magic Man Heart

6. Magic Cars

7. Black Magic Woman Santana

8. Strange Magic Electric Light Orchestra

9. You Can Do Magic America

10.  Magic Touch Kiss

11. Puff the Magic Dragon Peter, Paul and Mary

I hope everyone has a great day and finds a little magic somewhere.

Thursday, November 10, 2011

Top 10 Military Support, the USO

1. The United Service Organizations Inc. (USO) is a private, nonprofit organization that provides morale and recreational services to members of the U.S. military.

2. The program began in 1941 at the request of Franklin Delano Roosevelt to provide morale and recreation services to U.S. uniformed military personnel. Since its inception, the USO has worked in partnership with the Department of Defense (DOD), and has provided support and entertainment to U.S. armed forces, relying heavily on private contributions and on funds, goods, and services from DOD. It is congressional chartered but it is not a government agency.

3.The first national campaign chairman was Thomas Dewey, who raised $16 million in the first year. The second chairman was Prescott Bush, a future senator and father to a future president, and the grandfather to another.

4. Al Jolson notably was the first to volunteer and traveled to Korea at his own expense own expense.  He was also the first to entertain troops during World War II.

5. There is a long list of entertainers that have donated their time to entertaining the troops and no one has been more gracious and generous with his time and support as the late Bob Hope. I believe his name will always be synonymous with the USO. I remember many times around the holidays watching his specials broad cast on the television. I specifically remember his troupe of performers aboard an aircraft carrier being televised.

6. In 1996, the U.S. Congress honored Bob Hope by declaring him the "first and only honorary veteran of the U.S. armed "forces."[26]  As a result of his non-stop entertainment to both the civilian population and the military, he received numerous other honors over the years: a C-17 Air Force plane was named The Spirit of Bob Hope; a naval vessel was named the USNS Bob Hope; and streets, schools, hospitals, and a golf tournament were also named in his honor. A Senate resolution declared him "a part of American folklore."  During his 1993 televised birthday celebration, when he turned 90, General Colin Powell saluted Hope "for his tireless USO trouping", which was followed by onstage tributes from all branches of the armed forces. The USO at Los Angeles International Airport LAX is dedicated to Bob Hope.

7. There are many ways to donate to the USO, including donating your time.  Here is the link to the USO website to explore the possibilities. Military families should check out the programs offered to the soldiers and their families.

8. Maybe you do not have the resources or the time to donate just now.  I find a simply way to give back to any service man or woman it to just say thanks.  Very often we fail to stop and realize just what a great service they are doing for our country and also for our freedom.

9.  On Friday November 11 at 8PM EST ABC will sponsor a special Extreme Makeover in honor of Veterans Day.  Several celebrities will be on hand to encourage viewers to call in to donate via phone and online at The funds raised will benefit the USO, Fisher House, Hire Heroes USA, Intrepid Fallen Heroes Fund, Volunteers of America and Welcome Back Veterans.
 Al Jolson and many others. I just happened to see this when I was visiting the website.

10. The USO has a paid staff of approximately 240. Additionally, more than 30,000 USO volunteers provide an estimated 371,417 hours of service annually. As reported by the USO, the unpaid volunteer to paid employee ratio overseas is 20 to 1. Within the United States, the number is "significantly higher". I recently met a volunteer at the DFW (Dallas-Fort Worth Airport).  She passed along some of the information in this list to me and reminded me that there are still many people out there supporting our soldiers on a daily bases asking nothing in return, just as our soldiers are out there supporting us.  Volunteer opportunities at the airport seem to be a little bit difficult to sign up for due to security concerns but if you would like to help in some other way contact your local USO.

Tomorrow is Veterans Day and I salute the Men and Woman of the United States Military.

Thank You!

The Veterans Day Parade in Media, Pennsylvania is scheduled to begin approximately 11am on Friday.  Vice President Joe Biden and his wife are to be guests of honor. If you have never been to one of these parades, it is special to see.  There is a lot of pride on State Street that day.

Wednesday, November 9, 2011

Top 10 Cruising through the canals in Venice, Italy

The Venetian Gondola and the Gondolier

1. Mark Twain visited Venice in the summer of 1867. He dedicated much of The Innocents Abroad, chapter 23 to describing the curiosity of urban life with gondolas and gondoliers.

2. No doubt, gliding along the canals of Venice in a gondola can be one of the most romantic experiences you have ever had.  Life is so carefree and relaxed. It  makes you just want to feel the love.

3. That is, if you get the right boat, just my luck I was on a boat with Andy and Ping, Velma and Joe and my husband Dave, six passengers.  Velma decided to mix it up a little on our boat.  Our gondolier and the gondolier in front of us had their own conversation going on in Italian and Velma requested a song.  Sing! Sing! she said. We were not treated to a song, it must not have been part of our fare.

4. From what I  understand, there is a set fee for a gondola ride 40 minutes would be 80 Euros for a passenger boat of 6 people.  Evening rates are higher at 100 Euros.  I am not sure what a private cruise would cost.  I am assuming the same 80 or 100 Euros as a flat fee for the gondola and gondolier.

5. The profession of gondolier is controlled by a guild, which issues a limited number of licenses granted after periods of training and apprenticeship, and a major comprehensive exam[6] which tests knowledge of Venetian history and landmarks, foreign language skills, and practical skills in handling the gondola[7] typically necessary in the tight spaces of Venetian canals. In August 2010, Giorgia Boscolo became Venice's first female gondolier.  As we all know and love the Italians in our life, they do seem to gesture a lot with their hands.  I still wonder what this one was all about. It must have been directed to Velma and the singing request.

6. It is estimated that there were eight to ten thousand gondolas during the 17th and 18th century. It gives you an idea how vast this city on the sea really is. There are just over four hundred in active service today, virtually all of them used for hire by tourists.

7. It was fascinating to watch these guys maneuver around some tight spaces. The oar played a major role but so did the foot bouncing off the wall.  These are very gifted and trained professionals.

8. The traghetto is also a gondola ride.  It has a slightly cheaper fee but the ride is also much shorter.  It can take you from one side of the Grand Canal to the other for a mere 50 Euro cents. We were in a Water Taxi when this traghetto was passing across the canal.  Looks like he has the right of way.

9. Venice is beautiful no matter where you are looking but you do have to share it with a lot of tourists. Taking a gondola ride, you do get to see where and how the people who actually reside in Venice live.  It is a special treat.

10.  I would imagine it to be very romantic to travel along in the back streets of Venice via the canals at night with the lights reflecting off the water.  However, if you are planning a trip to Venice, I would recommend the 6 person cruise and find out the next time Velma is in Venice and cruise along with her.  She is a lot of fun. Every experience everywhere is about the people. Ciao Bella! Ciao Bello!

Most of these facts were derived from wikipedia, the rest are from personal experience and my own opinion.

Tuesday, November 8, 2011

Top 10 Differences Between a Mistake and a Choice

1. A mistake is an error in action.

2. A choice is an act or instance of choosing.

3. A mistake is a miscalculation.

4. A choice is an option or power to choose.  It is an option.

5. A mistake is an opinion.

6. A choice is a person or thing that is chosen or eligible to be chosen.

7. A mistake is a judgement caused by poor reasoning, carelessness and insufficient knowledge.

8. A choice is an alternative.

9. A mistake is a misunderstanding or a misconception.

10. A choice is an abundance or a variety from which to choose.


Don't make a mistake, make the correct choice VOTE.

Monday, November 7, 2011

Top 10 Tailgate Necessities

After last Sunday's Fantastic Football Game, I am ready for some Football!

Monday Night Football bring on The Bears!

Let the fun begin. If you are going, you might want to take along....

1. Cooler
2. Grill
3. Charcoal
4. Meat!!! Marinated, plain or spice rubbed.
5. Beer or other beverage of choice (ice tea works for teetotalers and the designated driver)
6. Ice
7. Chairs (not that I use 'em) I am always up roamin' around talkin trash!!!
8. Friends to toss around the football with and a football. (no tossing around friends)
9. Desserts
10. Tent or canape in case of foul weather.

This list was supplied by a professional tailgater, a season ticket holder for years.

I myself, have the best seat in the house in front of my television. Maybe it is much better to be there but, I suppose I am too girly, not a fan of the cold.

Tonight however, is supposed to be perfect football weather.

E A G L E S !

Friday, November 4, 2011

Top 10 Sheryl Crow Along with Other Artists (Duets)

She has won nine Grammy Awards from the National Academy of Recording Arts and Sciences.

The ever talented and versatile Sheryl Crow has performed with some of the best. Here is a sampling of links I found on Youtube. Tough list to chop down. There are so many more to check out on Youtube!

1. Always On Your Side Sheryl Crow and Sting

2. Collide Sheryl Crow and Kid Rock

3. Strong Enough Sheryl Crow and Stevie Nicks

4. Little Wing Sheryl Crow and Eric Clapton

5. Rock and Roll (cover Led Zepplin) Sheryl Crow with Peter Stroud

6. Can't Find My Way Home Sheryl Crow and the Allman Brothers

7. Pale Blue Eyes Sheryl Crow and Emmylou Harris

8. I Just Can't Stop Loving You Sheryl Crow and Michael Jackson (shorten video but worth the nostalgic view)

9. Not Fade Away Sheryl Crow, Levon Helm, Jacob Dylan, and Emmylou Harris

10. Today I Started Loving You Again Sheryl Crow and Willie Nelson

Speculation is the song "My Favorite Mistake" was about Eric Clapton but this has never been confirmed.  They do play well together.

Thursday, November 3, 2011

Top 10 Highlights of Visiting Venice

Venice, "The Floating City" is simply breathtaking. I can't think of a more descriptive word. The best way to get a general feel for the area and the islands that it encompasses, is to use google maps, plug in Venice, Italy (it is fascinating) and continue your journey down into the city. In real time, of course you have to arrive by boat, it just highlights the whole experience.

Ponte Littorio, the bridge is the only access for road vehicles to the capital city of Veneto.  It is built alongside the Venice Railroad Bridge, which was constructed in 1846, with two tracks each way, and is still in use. Most people be it tourist or the residents and employees travel by water taxi and ferry. A ferry traveling along the Grand Canal is comparable to a bus.  It makes periodic stops to drop off and pick up passengers. I saw no motor vehicle on land while I was there but a few trucks passed by on a barge in the waterway. It is very unique.

The Venice People Mover connects Tronchetto with Piazza Roma, the main Venice bus station, which lies at the edge of the city center. You are encouraged not to buy from the vendors in this area.  We were told these items are not authentic.

St. Mark's Clock Tower is the first building you will spot as you walk down towards St. Mark's Square.

St. Mark's Basilica is one of the finest examples of Byzantine architecture in the world.

Doge's Palace was the residence of the Doge of Venice, the supreme authority of the Republic of Venice. It was built in Gothic style.

Bridge of Sighs connects the old prisons to the interrogation rooms in the Doge's Palace.

Biblioteca Nazionale Marciana (sorry in English: The National Library of St. Mark's). It is just like St. Patrick's Day, when every one wants to be Irish, when you are in Italy you want to be Italian, at least I did. The library is one of the earliest surviving public manuscript depositories in the country, holding one of the greatest classical texts collections in the world.

The Campanile is the bell tower for St. Mark's Basilica. Galileo Galilei famously demonstrated his telescope to the Doge of Venice Antonio Priuli on August 21, 1609 from the Campanile.[5]

Each and every location listed has so much more detail and significance as does the city of Venice, every where you turn.  In future, I hope to take you on a gondola ride through the heart of the city using photographs and also a cruise down the Grand Canal.

Italy is a remarkable country so rich in art. culture and architecture.  Venice was spectacular!  Wait till you see my favorite Italian city. Mama Mia!

Tuesday, November 1, 2011

Top 10 November 2011 Reminders

November 1st Start that Novel it is the beginning of Write a Novel in a Month.

November 4th Time to address all that Halloween candy. You have had your fun. Donate it to your co-workers, freeze it and use it for holiday baking and or construction ideas on the gingerbread house.

November 6th Daylight Savings (set the clock back one hour). Change the battery on your smoke detector.

November 8th Election Day. Get out and vote!

November 11th Veterans Day. Thank someone in the military. Freedom is not free.

November 17th Great American Smokeout A great date to keep.

November 24th Thanksgiving Day. Be Grateful, give thanks.

November 25th Black Friday (biggest shopping day of the year)  look for previews of sales online.

November 28th Cyber Monday. Check out the Internet specials.  No need to go to the mall, fight the traffic or support local business.  Wait that could be detrimental.  Maybe you should weigh your choices.  Is shipping free??

November 30th Yikes!! Less then a month until Christmas and then the new year starts all over again. Get Jolly.