Monday, December 31, 2012

Last Day Of 2012

     
  


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HAPPY NEW YEAR'S EVE

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Sunday, December 30, 2012

Don't Know What To Tell Ya'

     
Tucson Weather Today

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Outside Magazine has a factual article that is written with more than enough suspense to rival any fictional thriller of a short story. But being nonfiction, it is easier to analyze the techniques used to create and maintain the sense of: "Oh my goodness, what comes next?"

The title is:

As Freezing Persons Recollect the Snow—First Chill—Then Stupor—Then the Letting Go


Below is a link:

The cold hard facts of freezing to death


I know I should write some more, but . . .

Just don't know what to tell ya'.

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WORD FOR TODAY

misanthrope
noun
a person who dislikes or distrusts other people or mankind in general

Wikipedia states: A misanthrope is a person who exhibits a general hatred, mistrust or disdain of the human species or human nature.

misanthropy

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BORN ON THIS DAY IN HISTORY


Matt Lauer
Born De.c 30, 1957
Age:   54 years old

Matthew Todd "Matt" Lauer is an American television journalist best known as the host of NBC's The Today Show since 1996. He was previously a news anchor in New York City and a local talk-show host in Boston, Philadelphia, Providence and Richmond. He was also host of PM Magazine (or "Evening Magazine" 1980-1986) and worked for ESPN in the 1980s as a sideline reporter.



Born Dec 30, 1975
Age:   36 years old

Eldrick Tont "Tiger" Woods is an American professional golfer whose achievements to date rank him among the most successful golfers of all time. Formerly the World No. 1, he was the highest-paid athlete in the world according to Forbes for several years.



Born Dec 30, 1945
Died Feb 29, 2012

David Thomas "Davy" Jones was an English recording artist, actor and businessman, best known as a member of the musical group the Monkees and star of the TV series of the same name. His acting credits include a Tony-nominated role as the Artful Dodger in Oliver! as well as roles in The Brady Bunch film and television show; Love, American Style; and My Two Dads. Jones is considered to be one of the greatest teen idols of all time.



Born Dec 30, 1942
Age:   69 years old

Robert Michael Nesmith is an American musician, songwriter, actor, producer, novelist, businessman, and philanthropist, best known as a member of the musical group The Monkees and co-star of The Monkees TV series (1966-1968). Nesmith is notable as a songwriter, including "Different Drum" (sung by Linda Ronstadt with the Stone Poneys), and as executive producer of the cult film Repo Man (1984). He also is credited with creating the genre of the music video. In 1981, Nesmith won the first Grammy Award given for Video of the Year for his hour-long television show, Elephant Parts.



Born Dec. 30, 1928
Died:  June 2, 2008

Ellas Otha Bates, known by his stage name Bo Diddley, was an American rhythm and blues vocalist, guitarist, songwriter, and rock and roll pioneer. He was also known as The Originator because of his key role in the transition from the blues to rock, influencing a host of acts, including Buddy Holly, Jimi Hendrix, The Rolling Stones, The Velvet Underground, The Who, The Yardbirds, Eric Clapton, Elvis Presley, The Beatles, and George Michael, among others.

He introduced more insistent, driving rhythms and a hard-edged electric guitar sound on a wide-ranging catalog of songs, along with African rhythms and a signature beat (a simple, five-accent rhythm) that remains a cornerstone of rock and pop. Accordingly, he was inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame and received Lifetime Achievement Awards from the Rhythm and Blues Foundation and a Grammy Award from the National Academy of Recording Arts and Sciences. He was known in particular for his technical innovations, including his trademark rectangular guitar.

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Tact is the ability to describe others as they see themselves.
--Abraham Lincoln
   

Saturday, December 29, 2012

Poutine -- A Unique Taste Treat

    
Tucson Weather Today

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"What the devil is Poutine?" I asked.

"Poutine, and it's pronounced Pew-tin by the way, not Poo-teen, is a Quebec dish, made with French Fries topped with Cheddar Cheese Curd and soaked in a hearty super-heated thick brown gravy."

"Oh Gee Whiz," I said, "Chili-Cheese Fries?"

"No, not exactly. Poutine is a French-Canadian food that tastes a little bit like American Gravy Cheese Fries, but just a little bit. There's actually a world of difference between the two."


"So, it doesn't taste like gravy soaked cheese fries? What does it taste like?"

"The taste is indescribable."

"You don't say?"


Recipe for Poutine.

The potato (French Fry) must be hand-cut, absolutely fresh, and fried in pure lard.

The gravy, sometimes called BBQ Chicken Gravy is dark and very thick, and it must be bubbling hot.

The cheese is the most important part. You must use FRESH white, cheddar cheese CURDS. These curds have a taste and texture much different than actual cheddar cheese.

A Styrofoam bowl should be used in which to serve Poutine, since the Styrofoam reacts to produce the proper heat when the steaming gravy is poured over the cheese curd to create the dish's unique flavor.


It's said that when the curds are placed on the fries and the thick bubbly gravy is poured on top, the three flavors combine to produce what can only be described as the BEST junk food taste sensation on God's Green Earth.

More about Poutine . . .
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WORD FOR TODAY

calisthenics
noun
-  Gymnastic exercises designed to develop muscular tone and promote physical well-being.
-  The practice or art of such exercises: Calisthenics is recommended to relax the muscles before a run.

Calisthenics is a form of exercise consisting of a variety of simple, often rhythmical, movements, generally without using equipment or apparatus. They are intended to increase body strength and flexibility with movements such as bending, jumping, swinging, twisting or kicking, using only one's body weight for resistance. They are usually conducted in concert with stretches. Calisthenics when performed vigorously and with variety can benefit both muscular and cardiovascular fitness, in addition to improving psycho-motor skills such as balance, agility and coordination

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BORN ON THIS DAY IN HISTORY


Mary Tyler Moore
 
 Born Dec 29, 1936
Age:   75 years old

Mary Tyler Moore is an American actress, primarily known for her roles in television sitcoms. Moore is best known for The Mary Tyler Moore Show (1970–77), in which she starred as Mary Richards, a 30-something single woman who worked as a local news producer in Minneapolis, and for her earlier role as Laura Petrie (Dick Van Dyke's wife) on The Dick Van Dyke Show (1961–66). She also appeared in a number of films, most notably 1980's Ordinary People, in which she played a role that was the polar opposite of the television characters she had portrayed, and for which she was nominated for an Academy Award for Best Actress.



 
Born Dec. 29, 1947
Age:   64 years old

Edward Bridge "Ted" Danson III is an American actor, author and producer, well known for his role as lead character Sam Malone in the sitcom Cheers, and his role as Dr. John Becker on the series Becker. He is currently starring in the CBS drama CSI: Crime Scene Investigation. He also plays a recurring role on Larry David's HBO sitcom Curb Your Enthusiasm, starred alongside Glenn Close in legal drama Damages and was a regular on the HBO comedy series Bored to Death.



 
Born Dec 29, 1938
Age:  73 years old

Jonathan Vincent "Jon" Voight is an American actor. He has won one Academy Award, out of four nominations, and three Golden Globe Awards, out of nine nominations. Voight is the biological father of actress Angelina Jolie.

Voight came to prominence in the late 1960s with his performance as a would-be gigolo in Midnight Cowboy (1969). During the 1970s, he became a Hollywood star with his portrayals of a businessman mixed up with murder in Deliverance (1972), a paraplegic Vietnam veteran in Coming Home (1978), for which he won an Academy Award for Best Actor, and a penniless ex-boxing champion in The Champ (1979).

Although his output slowed during the 1980s, Voight received critical acclaim for his performance as a ruthless bank robber in Runaway Train (1985). During the 1990s, he most notably starred as an unscrupulous showman attorney in The Rainmaker (1997). Voight gave critically acclaimed biographical performances during the 2000s (decade), appearing as sportscaster Howard Cosell in Ali (2001), as Nazi officer J├╝rgen Stroop in Uprising (2001), and as Pope John Paul II in the television miniseries of the same name (2005).



 
Born Dec. 29, 1800
Died   July 1, 1860

Charles Goodyear was an American inventor who developed a process to vulcanize rubber in 1839 -- a method that he perfected while living and working in Springfield, Massachusetts in 1844, and for which he received patent number 3633 from the United States Patent Office on June 15, 1844.


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Writing fiction, there are no limits to what you write as long as it increases the value of the paper you are writing on.
--Buddy Ebsen
    

Friday, December 28, 2012

That Was Then And Today Ain't

  
Tucson Weather Today

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The blog titled Rensselaer Adventures has a photo of a new sign that recently caught my eye.

The sign reads, Potawatomi Park, which probably means nothing to most of those citizens who are either not living in or near the area.

The name Potawatomi itself brought back some memories spent in Rensselaer, Indiana where I was born and lived for the first 40 years of my life. One tribe of the Potawatomi Indians lived in that region along the Iroquois River before the white man arrived to kick most of them out of the State of Indiana and relocate them to Kansas and to other territories.

Potawatomi Park

Rensselaer, Indiana

When I was a  member of the Boy Scouts of America, there in Jasper County, circa 1940, our troop (It was troop 52 then, changed later to 152) was introduced to and then adopted a little ditty that went:

Potawatomi Kini-Kinick!

We're the Scouts who never get sick;
We brush our teeth, we comb our hair;
We try to be neat, we try to play fair.


Potawatomi Rensselaer!


To be effective, of course, the words were not actually sung by we of Boy Scout Troop 52, but were enthusiastically yelled out at the top of our lungs, as subteen boys will always do with any encouragement at all.

There exists an image of one of the early Potawatomi chieftain, Leapold Pokagon, and the picture is represented by Wikipedia as being out of copyright and in the public domain.


I have just a vague memory of a tall, bent-over, old man, a raggedy poverty stricken fellow living back in those days named KiKi Rizensun who loved to walk the banks of the Iroquois River. He was a full-blooded Native American man who was widely rumored to be a member of the Potawatomi tribe. But my dad told me, and often reminded me, that this was not true, that KiKi was not a Potawatomie but a Cherokee. And I always wondered about that.

I suppose we'll never know. I tried once to research the name KiKi Rizensun using Google but could never uncover even the hint of such an appellation anywhere. And even though I told the Jasper County Librarian, via email, that KiKi was a full-time resident of the welfare department's County Home back in the 1940s and middle 1950s, she could find no trace of him in any of the records.

Oh well . . . as always, we are born, we die, all of us. -- and all of us are eventually forgotten.


Information about the Potawatomi Indians


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WORD FOR TODAY

indigenous
Adjective
Originating or occurring naturally in a particular place; native.
Synonyms
native - aboriginal - native-born

From Wikipedia:

Indigenous peoples are ethnic minorities who have been marginalized as their historical territories became part of a state. In international or national legislation they are generally defined as having a set of specific rights based on their historical ties to a particular territory and on their cultural or historical distinctiveness from politically dominant populations.

The concept of indigenous peoples defines these groups as particularly vulnerable to exploitation, marginalization and oppression by nation states that may still be formed from the colonizing populations, or by politically dominant ethnic groups. As a result, a special set of political rights in accordance with international law have been set forth by international organizations such as the United Nations, the International Labor Organization and the World Bank. The United Nations have issued a Declaration on the Rights of Indigenous Peoples to guide member-state national policies in protecting the collective rights of indigenous peoples to their culture, identity, language, employment, health, education and natural resources.

Although no definitive definition of "indigenous people" exists, estimates of a World total population of post-colonial indigenous people seeking human rights and discrimination redress range from 220 million in 1997 to 350 million in 2004.

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BORN ON THIS DAY IN HISTORY

Nichelle Nichols
Born Dec 28, 1932
Age:   79 years old

Nichelle Nichols (born Grace Dell Nichols) is an American actress, singer and voice artist. She sang with Duke Ellington and Lionel Hampton before turning to acting.

Her most famous role is that of communications officer Lieutenant Uhura aboard the USS Enterprise in the popular Star Trek television series, as well as the succeeding motion pictures, where her character was eventually promoted in Starfleet to the rank of commander. Her Star Trek character was groundbreaking in U.S society at the time, and civil rights leader Martin Luther King, Jr. personally praised her work on the show and asked her to remain when she was considering leaving the series.



Born Dec 28, 1954
Age:   57 years old

Denzel Hayes Washington, Jr. is an American actor, film director, and film producer. He has received much critical acclaim for his work in film since the 1990s, including for his portrayals of real-life figures such as Steve Biko, Malcolm X, Rubin "Hurricane" Carter, Melvin B. Tolson, Frank Lucas, and Herman Boone. Washington is a featured actor in the films produced by Jerry Bruckheimer and was a frequent collaborator of the late director Tony Scott.

Washington has received two Golden Globe awards and a Tony Award, and two Academy Awards: Best Supporting Actor for Glory (1989) and Best Actor for Training Day (2001).




Born Dec 28, 1905
Died: Sep 23, 1974

Clifford Charles "Cliff" Arquette was an American actor and comedian, famous for his TV role as Charley Weaver.




Born Dec 28, 1879
Died  Feb 19, 1936

William "Billy" Mitchell was a United States Army general who is regarded as the father of the U.S. Air Force.

Mitchell served in France during World War I and, by the conflict's end, commanded all American air combat units in that country. After the war, he was appointed deputy director of the Air Service and began advocating increased investment in air power, believing that this would prove vital in future wars. He argued particularly for the ability of bombers to sink battleships and organized a series of bombing runs against stationary ships designed to test the idea.

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Education is indoctrination if you're white - subjugation if you're black.
--James A. Baldwin


Thursday, December 27, 2012

Even The Misanthrope Can Embrace Nature

 
Tucson Weather Today

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I am presently working toward improvements to this blog, making it more interesting, making it worthwhile to be read. Not today, and probably not tomorrow, but given sufficient time, I will eventually succeed.

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Illumination Of The Winter Scrub
 Tucson, AZ -- December 2012


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I had to live in the desert before I could understand the full value of grass in a green ditch.
--Ella Maillart


Wednesday, December 26, 2012

The Significance Of Insignificance

 
Tucson Weather Today

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I am so darned sick and tired of writing such trivial ephemera in this, my daily blog. It is no mystery as to why I have so few loyal readers. It is because my entries are so boring and so nearly meaningless and lacking in importance, lacking any great significance or value.

Such a sad state will probably continue unless I can bring myself to effect a radical change in presentation, such as perhaps creating a series of fictional or semi-fictional stories loosely based on events that actually happened during my lifetime.

If I can do that, it might strike some interest in enhanced future readership.

That would be a lot of work, though.

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WORD FOR TODAY

ephemera [ee-FEMM-uhr-uh]
noun

Ephemera (singular: ephemeron) is any transitory written or printed matter not meant to be retained or preserved. The word derives from the Greek, meaning things lasting no more than a day. Some collectible ephemera are advertising trade cards, airsickness bags, bookmarks, catalogs, greeting cards, letters, pamphlets, postcards, posters, prospectuses, stock certificates, tickets, and zines.



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Example Of Ephemera



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Art teaches nothing, except the significance of life.
--Michael Korda


Tuesday, December 25, 2012

Merry Christmas 2012

  

Merry Christmas To All

Monday, December 24, 2012

Christmas Eve



Today is Christmas Eve


Best Wishes To All My Readers


Sunday, December 23, 2012

Creating A Religion Ain't Easy. Or Is It?


Tucson Weather Today

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Today I was going to write about creating religions. But for some reason I fell into a mental funk of some sort, a kind of gray-out and nothing emerged. So I suppose it will have to wait until a better time.


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WORD FOR TODAY

gullible
Adjective
Easily persuaded to believe something; credulous.
Synonyms
credulous - naive - trustful

Wikipedia  says -- Gullibility is a failure of social intelligence in which a person is easily tricked or manipulated into an ill-advised course of action. It is closely related to credulity, which is the tendency to believe unlikely propositions that are unsupported by evidence. Classes of people especially vulnerable to exploitation due to gullibility include children, the elderly, and the developmentally disabled.

A popular test of gullibility is to tell a friend that the word gullible isn't in the dictionary; a gullible person might respond "Really?" and go to look it up.

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BORN ON THIS DAY IN HISTORY



Joseph Smith
Born Dec. 23, 1805
Died June 27, 1844

Joseph Smith, Jr. was an American religious leader and the founder of the Latter Day Saint movement, the predominant branch of which is Mormonism. At age twenty-four, Smith published the Book of Mormon, and in the next fourteen years he attracted thousands of followers, established cities and temples, and created a lasting religious culture.

Smith was born in Sharon, Vermont, and by 1817 had moved with his family to the burned-over district of western New York, an area repeatedly swept by religious revivals during the Second Great Awakening. The Smiths believed in visions and prophecies, and participated in folk religious practices typical of the era. According to Smith, beginning in the early 1820s he had visions, in one of which an angel directed him to a buried book of golden plates inscribed with a Judeo-Christian history of ancient American civilizations. In 1830, he published what he said was an English translation of these plates as the Book of Mormon and organized the Church of Christ as a restoration of the early Christian church. Church members were later called Latter Day Saints, Saints, or Mormons.

Tarring and Feathering of Joseph Smith

Wikipedia has much information regarding
Joseph Smith and the Mormon Church.



Born Dec 23, 1952
Age:   59 years old

William Kristol is an American neoconservative political analyst and commentator. He is the founder and editor of the political magazine The Weekly Standard and a regular commentator on the Fox News Channel.

Kristol is associated with a number of prominent conservative think tanks. He was chairman of the New Citizenship Project from 1997 to 2005. In 1997, he co-founded the Project for the New American Century (PNAC) with Robert Kagan. He is a member of the board of trustees for the free-market Manhattan Institute for Policy Research, a member of the Policy Advisory Board for the Ethics and Public Policy Center, and a director of the Foreign Policy Initiative. He is also one of the three board members of Keep America Safe, a think tank co-founded by Liz Cheney and Debra Burlingame, and serves on the board of the Emergency Committee for Israel and the Susan B. Anthony List.



Born Dec 23, 1946
Age:   65 years old

Susan Victoria Lucci is an American actress, television host, author and entrepreneur, best known for portraying Erica Kane on the ABC daytime drama All My Children. The character is considered an icon, and Lucci has been called "Daytime's Leading Lady" by TV Guide, with New York Times and Los Angeles Times citing her as the highest-paid actor in daytime television. As early as 1991, her salary had been reported as over $1 million a year.

In 1996, TV Guide ranked Lucci number 37 on its 50 Greatest TV Stars of All Time list. In 2005, she received a Star on the Hollywood Walk of Fame and was inducted into the Broadcasting Hall of Fame in 2006. She was named one of VH1’s 200 Top Icons of All-Time and one of Barbara Walters’s Ten Most Fascinating People. She has also played roles in made-for-TV movies, hosted many shows and guest starred on television comedy series, including Saturday Night Live and Hot in Cleveland. She also has her own line of hair care products, perfumes, lingerie and skin care, called The Susan Lucci Collection. Lucci was cast as Genevieve Delacourt in the upcoming Lifetime television series Devious Maids, set to air in 2013.



Born Dec. 23, 1918
Died: Dec 31, 2000

Jose Greco was a flamenco dancer and choreographer. He was born in Italy of Italian parents bot was raised in New York City from the time he was 10 years old. He began dancing in Brooklyn with his sister Norina at a young age.

Greco appeared in a number of films, including Sombrero (1953), Around the World in 80 Days (1956), Holiday for Lovers (1959), Ship of Fools (1965), and The Proud and the Damned (1972).


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“Do not be so open-minded that your brains fall out.”

--G.K. Chesterton


Saturday, December 22, 2012

Religion, Faith, And Death


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On the Dr. Oz Show, Marlo Thomas, speaking about her father, Danny Thomas, said, "He wasn't a religious man but he was a man of faith." And I suddenly realized that I did not know what that meant. What is the difference between a religious man and a man of faith?"

So I set out to find the answer, using Google. This proved to be more difficult than I thought it would be.

While searching, I ran across an article in Desert News  written by Matthew Brown titled Abraham Lincoln was a man of faith but skeptical of religion. This article did not answer my question but instead, deepened my quandary.

The article contained an email contact address so I fired off a short message to Mr. Brown asking him to point me to a site or article that might help me. I haven't heard back from him yet, but when I do I will reveal whether or not I have come closer to an answer. And I will keep searching the Internet until I find a satisfactory answer or grow tired of the subject, whichever comes first.

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 Yesterday I mentioned my admiration of the blog of Darren Greer -- well, today I ordered one of his novels, Still Life With June which I previewed through Amazon's Look Inside feature.

I am looking forward to receiving it next week and reading it.

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A former classmate and good friend of mine, Herbert Arihood, died recently in my hometown of Rensselaer, Indiana, where he served several terms as Mayor. Herbie and I go way back to the first grade. We had a few adventures (and some misadventures) together through the school years. He was quite a guy.



It seems like so many of my classmates (from 1945 on) have died. Well, I am now 73 years old, so I suppose that's to be expected. Nothing I know of that can change it.

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WORD FOR TODAY

locus
noun
-  A particular position, point, or place.
-  The effective or perceived location of something abstract
synonyms
place - spot - position - location - locality - space

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BORN ON THIS DAY IN HISTORY


Barbara Billingsley

 Born Dec. 22, 1915
Died: Oct 16, 2010

Barbara Billingsley was an American film, television, voice and stage actress. She gained prominence in the 1950s movie The Careless Years, acting opposite Natalie Trundy, followed by her best–known role, that of June Cleaver on the television series Leave It to Beaver (1957–1963) and its sequel Still the Beaver (1985–1988, retitled in season two as The New Leave It to Beaver).




 Born Dec. 22, 1917
Died Nov. 29, 1999

Gene Rayburn was an American radio and television personality. He is best known as the host of various editions of the popular American television game show Match Game for over two decades.




Born Dec 22, 1945
Age:   66 years old

Lila Diane Sawyer is the current anchor of ABC News' flagship program, ABC World News. Previously, Sawyer had been co-anchor of ABC News's morning news program, Good Morning America (GMA).




Born Dec 22, 1912
Died July 11, 2007

Claudia Alta "Lady Bird" Taylor Johnson was First Lady of the United States (1963–69) during the presidency of her husband Lyndon B. Johnson.

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It's not what you look at that matters, it's what you see.

--Henry David Thoreau


Friday, December 21, 2012

Forms Of Communication

 
Tucson Weather Today

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Well, today is the day that thousands of gullible citizens of various nations believe to be the day of Armageddon, the long awaited end of the world as we know it.

Ain't gonna happen.



And that's enough about that.

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Thanks to Wikipedia and various other research sources, I have come to the conclusion that there are five types of communication suitable (if properly modified) for inclusion within a writing-related blog. A blog that I would like this one to become.

Fiction is the form of any narrative or informative work that deals, in part or in whole, with information or events that are not factual, but rather, imaginary and theoretical—that is, invented by the author. Although fiction describes a major branch of literary work, it may also refer to theatrical, cinematic, or musical work. Fiction contrasts with non-fiction, which deals exclusively with factual (or, at least, assumed factual) events, descriptions, observations, etc. (e.g., biographies, histories).

Flash fiction is a style of fictional literature or fiction of extreme brevity. There is no widely accepted definition of the length of the category. Some self-described markets for flash fiction impose caps as low as three hundred words, while others consider stories as long as a thousand words to be flash fiction.

An essay is a piece of writing which is often written from an author's personal point of view. Essays can consist of a number of elements, including: literary criticism, political manifestos, learned arguments, observations of daily life, recollections, and reflections of the author.

An article is a written work published in a print or electronic medium. It may be for the purpose of propagating the news, research results, academic analysis or debate.

An anecdote is a short and amusing or interesting account, which may depict a real incident or person.

It struck me that any or all of these forms might be a good endeavor for me to employ to make this blog better, or at least more popular.

But doing so will entail copious amounts of work on my part.

Hm . . .

Maybe an 'occasional' story, essay, or article.

As an example of an intellectual website, take a look at the blog of . . .

Darren Shawn Greer

This blog, if examined thoroughly, will challenge you (and me) to think.

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WORD FOR TODAY

fiction
noun
1.
the class of literature comprising works of imaginative narration, especially in prose form.
2.
works of this class, as novels or short stories: detective fiction.
3.
something feigned, invented, or imagined; a made-up story: We've all heard the fiction of her being in delicate health.
4.
the act of feigning, inventing, or imagining.
5.
an imaginary thing or event, postulated for the purposes of argument or explanation.


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BORN ON THIS DAY IN HISTORY



Ray Romano

Born Dec 21, 1957
Age:   54 years old

Raymond Albert "Ray" Romano is an American actor, stand-up comedian, screenwriter and voice actor, best known for his roles on the sitcom Everybody Loves Raymond and in the Ice Age film series. He recently starred in the TNT comedy-drama Men of a Certain Age.



Born Dec 21, 1937
Age:   74 years old

Jane Fonda (born Lady Jayne Seymour Fonda) is an American actress, writer, political activist, former fashion model, and fitness guru. She rose to fame in the 1960s with films such as Barbarella and Cat Ballou. She has won two Academy Awards, an Emmy Award and received several other movie awards and nominations during more than 50 years as an actress. After 15 years of retirement, she returned to film in 2005 with Monster-in-Law, followed by Georgia Rule two years later. She also produced and starred in over 20 exercise videos released between 1982 and 1995, and once again in 2010.



Here's Another Picture Of Jane





Born Dec 21, 1948
Age:   63 years old

Samuel Leroy Jackson is an American film and television actor and film producer. After becoming involved with the Civil Rights Movement, he moved on to acting in theater at Morehouse College, and then films. He had several small roles such as in the film Goodfellas before meeting his mentor, Morgan Freeman, and the director Spike Lee. After gaining critical acclaim for his role in Jungle Fever in 1991, he appeared in films such as Patriot Games, Amos & Andrew, True Romance and Jurassic Park. In 1994, he was cast as Jules Winnfield in Pulp Fiction, and his performance received several award nominations and critical acclaim.

Jackson has since appeared in over 100 films including Die Hard with a Vengeance, The 51st State, Jackie Brown, Unbreakable, The Incredibles, Black Snake Moan, Shaft, Snakes on a Plane, as well as the Star Wars prequel trilogy and small roles in Quentin Tarantino's Kill Bill Vol. 2 and Inglourious Basterds.

He played Nick Fury in Iron Man, Iron Man 2, Thor, Captain America: The First Avenger, and Marvel's The Avengers, the first five of a nine-film commitment as the character for the Marvel Cinematic Universe franchise.



Born Dec 21, 1966
Age:   45 years old

Kiefer William Frederick Dempsey George Rufus Sutherland is an English-born Canadian actor, producer and director. He is best known for his portrayal of Jack Bauer on the Fox series 24 for which he won an Emmy Award, a Golden Globe award, two Screen Actors Guild Awards, and two Satellite Awards. Since January 2012, he has starred as Martin Bohm in the Fox drama Touch.

Stand by Me was the first film Sutherland made in the United States. He played the neighborhood bully in this coming of age story about the search for a dead body. Sutherland has appeared in more than 70 films, most notably Twin Peaks: Fire Walk with Me, A Few Good Men, Flatliners, Young Guns, The Vanishing, The Three Musketeers, Eye for an Eye, Dark City, A Time To Kill, and The Sentinel.
The actor has also appeared in The Lost Boys, Flatliners, Phone Booth and the big screen adaptation of A Time to Kill.


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Writing is the only thing that, when I do it, I don't feel I should be doing something else.

--Gloria Steinem



Thursday, December 20, 2012

Obese Is Not A Synonym For Overweight


Tucson Weather Today

_________________


I am concerned about my weight. I have been gaining pounds and waist size for the last year and a half or so. I now weight 170 pounds, whereas I formerly, for several years, weighed 160 pounds. And ideally I should weigh between 140 and 150 pounds.

What I should do is immediately make a commitment to slim down and then 'do' it. I know how to do it. I've done it before. But my problem is getting started, taking that first step on an effective weight loss diet.

Here is what the experts say:

How To Lose Weight

An active lifestyle and plenty of exercise, along with healthy eating, is the safest way to lose weight. Even modest weight loss can improve your health. You will need a lot of support from family and friends.

When dieting, your main goal should be to learn new, healthy ways of eating and make them a part of your daily routine.

Many people find it hard to change their eating habits and behaviors. You may have practiced some habits for so long that you may not even know they are unhealthy, or you do them without thinking. You need to be motivated to make lifestyle changes. Make the behavior change part of your life over the long term. Know that it takes time to make and keep a change in your lifestyle.


Waist circumferences representing normal, overweight, and obese


Work with your health care provider and dietitian to set realistic, safe daily calorie counts that help you lose weight while staying healthy.

Remember that if you drop pounds slowly and steadily, you are more likely to keep them off.

Obese Male

(No, Smarty-Pants, this is NOT a picture of me)


CHANGING YOUR LIFESTYLE provides more information on losing weight.


I'm going to do it.

It will be interesting to see how much I weigh six months from now, and then a year from now.

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WORD FOR TODAY

obese
Adjective
Grossly fat or overweight.
Synonyms
fat - corpulent - gross

Obesity means having too much body fat. It is not the same as being overweight, which means weighing too much. A person may be overweight from extra muscle, bone, or water, as well as from having too much fat.

Both terms mean that a person's weight is higher than what is thought to be healthy for his or her height.


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BORN ON THIS DAY IN HISTORY
Born Dec 20, 1898
Died: Sept 4, 1990

Irene Dunne was an American film actress and singer of the 1930s, 1940s and early 1950s. Dunne was nominated five times for the Academy Award for Best Actress, for her performances in Cimarron (1931), Theodora Goes Wild (1936), The Awful Truth (1937), Love Affair (1939) and I Remember Mama (1948). She was named to the International Best Dressed List Hall of Fame in 1958.


Born Dec 20, 1868
Died:  Feb 7, 1938

Harvey Samuel Firestone was an American businessman, and the founder of the Firestone Tire and Rubber Company, one of the first global makers of automobile tires.




Born Dec 20, 1954
Age:   57 years old

Michael Badalucco is an American actor most famous for his role as lawyer Jimmy Berluti on the ABC legal drama The Practice. He won the 1999 Emmy for Best Supporting Actor for his role on the show.


Born Dec 20, 1946
Age:   65 years old

Uri Geller is a self-proclaimed psychic known for his trademark television performances of spoon bending and other supposed psychic effects. Throughout the years, Geller has been accused of using simple conjuring tricks to simulate the effects of psychokinesis and telepathy. Geller's career as an entertainer has spanned almost four decades, with television shows and appearances in many countries. Geller used to call his abilities "psychic" but now prefers to refer to himself as a "mystifier" and entertainer. Geller's first name is pronounced oori, not yoori.


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"Thin people are beautiful, but fat people are adorable."
--Jackie Gleason


Wednesday, December 19, 2012

Do Thoughts And Prayers Go Out? To Where?


Tucson Weather Today

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In the wake of the Sandy Hook tragedy, all the celebrity Network News mavens are so reverently reporting on the nation "coming together in prayer" and then the president speechifying once again, as always, about how, "We must (insert action)" and then, as always, personally doing nothing. (Not that there is anything he can do.)

Over and over from the television announcers, in solemn voices is proclaimed that nonsensical old bromide, "Our thoughts and prayers go out to the families of the victims" -- as if such thoughts and prayers are of any use whatsoever.

I often feel that there does indeed exist a God, not the fairy tale God of the Christians nor any other supposedly supernatural creature who is directly involved with humanity and who is the creator of all things in the universe, and who is, by the way, creator of the universe itself.

Oh well. I'm going nowhere with this.

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Yesterday at around noon I walked down Camino-Seco to Broadway to conduct some business with my bank. After I did that I began the one mile walk back toward home. In the vicinity of the Sihuaro High School building I noticed, looking North, that the sky and mountains in the noontime  December daylight presented a fascinating view. I always carry my little camera in my pocket so I took it in hand and snapped a few shots. Below is one of them.

View From Sihuaro High School
Camino-Seco Between Speedway and Broadway
Tucson, AZ  December 18, 2012


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WORDs FOR TODAY

bromide
noun
A bromide is a phrase or platitude that, having been employed excessively, suggests insincerity or a lack of originality in the speaker employing it.

Nonsense
noun
1. Words or signs having no intelligible meaning.
2. Subject matter, behavior, or language that is foolish or absurd.
3. Extravagant foolishness or frivolity.
4. Matter of little or no importance or usefulness.
5. Insolent talk or behavior; impudence

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BORN ON THIS DAY IN HISTORY


Tim Reid
Born Dec 19, 1944
Age:   67 years old

Timothy L. "Tim" Reid is an American actor, comedian and film director best known for his roles in prime time American television programs, such as Venus Flytrap on WKRP in Cincinnati (1978–82), Marcel "Downtown" Brown on Simon & Simon (1983–87), Ray Campbell on Sister, Sister (1994–99) and William Barnett on That '70s Show (2004-2006). Reid starred in a CBS series, Frank's Place, as a professor who inherits a Louisiana restaurant.

Born Dec 19, 1972
Age:   39 years old

Alyssa Jayne Milano is an American actress, producer and former singer, best known for portraying Phoebe Halliwell on The WB television series Charmed (1998–2006). Milano first rose to fame on television for her childhood role as Samantha Micelli on the ABC sitcom series Who's the Boss? (1984–1992). She also portrayed the role of Jennifer Mancini on the Fox soap opera Melrose Place (1997–98).



Born Dec 19, 1980
Age:   31 years old

Marla Lynne Sokoloff is an American actress and musician, known for playing the part of Lucy Hatcher on the TV show The Practice, and Gia Mahan on the ABC sitcom, Full House.


Born Dec 19, 1933
Age:   78 years old

Cicely Tyson is an American actress. A successful stage actress, Tyson is also known for her Oscar-nominated role in the film Sounder and the television movies The Autobiography of Miss Jane Pittman and Roots.

Tyson married legendary jazz trumpeter Miles Davis on November 26, 1981. The ceremony was conducted by Atlanta mayor Andrew Young at the home of actor Bill Cosby. Tyson and Davis divorced in 1988.

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Belief cannot argue with unbelief, it can only preach to it.
--Karl Barth


Tuesday, December 18, 2012

Coming Out Of The Closet


Tucson Weather Today

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To be ostracized is to be excluded, but it does not have to be apparent. One can be excluded for exhibiting honesty, such as declaring one's self as not believing in a Christian society's majority acceptance of the one true God, or by refusing to go along with that society's moral code even when that mode of behavior is ridiculous, such as adhering to  a current radical sports (basketball, football, baseball) mania.

Recently, I read from an atheist blog, "I don’t think most Christians understand that Jesus found public praying to be hypocritical."  I looked this thought up in the Bible, the King James Bible (Cambridge Ed.)  and found at Matthew 6:5, the verse that declares: "And when thou prayest, thou shalt not be as the hypocrites are: for they love to pray standing in the synagogues and in the corners of the streets, that they may be seen of men. Verily I say unto you, They have their reward."

But how many citizens within a population of dedicated Christians does not publicly shun the outspoken atheist who refuses to pray with them in public and themselves decry the scientific proofs propounded against ignorant supernatural theism?

Publicly admitting that one is an atheist is somewhat akin to a gay person coming out of the closet by publicly declaring his or her homosexuality.

There is an excellent article on that subject:

Coming Out Link . . .


The form of ostracism known as social rejection is especially insidious. This occurs when an individual is deliberately excluded from a social relationship or social interaction. A person can be rejected on an individual basis or by an entire group of people. This rejection can be either active, by bullying, teasing, or ridiculing, or passive, by ignoring a person, or giving him or her the "silent treatment."

Rejection by an entire group of individuals can have especially negative effects, particularly when it results in social isolation. The experience of rejection can lead to a number of adverse psychological consequences such as loneliness, low self-esteem, aggression, and depression. It can also lead to feelings of insecurity and a heightened sensitivity to future rejection.

So many of the young shooters involved in tragedies wherein innocent victims are killed have been described as being loners, being social misfits, and one must wonder if this social isolation is due to the shooter's isolationist personality or is perhaps instigated by an ostracizing society itself.

It's a real mystery.

Right?

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WORD FOR TODAY


ostracize
verb
-  to exclude, by general consent, from society, friendship, conversation, privileges, etc.
-  to banish (a person) from his or her native country; expatriate.
-  (in ancient Greece) to banish (a citizen) temporarily by popular vote.
Synonyms
banish - proscribe - exile

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BORN ON THIS DAY IN HISTORY


Brad Pitt

Born Dec. 18, 1963
Age:   48 years old

William Bradley "Brad" Pitt is an American actor and film producer. Pitt has received four Academy Award nominations and five Golden Globe Award nominations, winning one Golden Globe. He has been described as one of the world's most attractive men, a label for which he has received substantial media attention.

Pitt first gained recognition as a cowboy hitchhiker in the road movie Thelma & Louise (1991). His first leading roles in big-budget productions came with A River Runs Through It (1992), Interview with the Vampire (1994), and Legends of the Fall (1994). In 1995, he gave critically acclaimed performances in the crime thriller Seven and the science fiction film 12 Monkeys, the latter earning him a Golden Globe Award for Best Supporting Actor and an Academy Award nomination.

Four years later, Pitt starred in the cult hit Fight Club. He then starred in the major international hit Ocean's Eleven (2001) and its sequels, Ocean's Twelve (2004) and Ocean's Thirteen (2007). His greatest commercial successes have been Troy (2004) and Mr. & Mrs. Smith (2005). Pitt received his second and third Academy Award nominations for his leading performances in The Curious Case of Benjamin Button (2008) and Moneyball (2011). In addition, Pitt owns a production company, Plan B Entertainment, whose productions include The Departed (2006), which won the Academy Award for Best Picture, and Moneyball, which garnered a Best Picture nomination.

Following a high-profile relationship with actress Gwyneth Paltrow, Pitt was married to actress Jennifer Aniston for five years. Pitt lives with actress Angelina Jolie in a relationship that has attracted wide publicity. He and Jolie have six children—Maddox, Pax, Zahara, Shiloh, Knox, and Vivienne. Since beginning his relationship with Jolie, he has become increasingly involved in social issues both in the United States and internationally.



Born Dec 18, 1916
Died: July 2, 1973

Elizabeth Ruth "Betty" Grable was an American actress, dancer, and singer. She was celebrated for having the most beautiful legs in Hollywood. Her iconic bathing suit poster made her the number-one pin-up girl of the World War II era.

Grable appeared in several smash-hit musical films in the 1940s, most notable: Mother Wore Tights in 1947, with frequent co-star Dan Dailey. She came to prominence in 1939 when she signed with Twentieth Century-Fox and signed on to appear opposite Ethel Merman in the Broadway musical Du Barry Was a Lady. But it was not until she was called back to Hollywood to replace Fox's musical queen, Alice Faye, in Down Argentine Way, that she became a household name.

Throughout her career, Grable was typecast in her stereotype-musical film roles, and when her career faltered in the 1950s, she found it hard to reinvent herself as a serious, trained actress. In 1958 she appeared as herself on The Lucy-Desi Comedy Hour with then husband Harry James in an episode entitled "Lucy Wins A Racehorse".




Born: Dec 18, 1878
Died:  Mar. 5, 1953

Joseph Vissarionovich Stalin was the Premier of the Soviet Union from 6 May 1941 until his death.




Born Dec. 18, 1886
Died: July 17, 1961

Tyrus Raymond "Ty" Cobb, nicknamed "The Georgia Peach," was an American Major League Baseball outfielder. He was born in Narrows, Georgia. Cobb spent 22 seasons with the Detroit Tigers, the last six as the team's player-manager, and finished his career with the Philadelphia Athletics. In 1936, Cobb received the most votes of any player on the inaugural Baseball Hall of Fame ballot, receiving 222 out of a possible 226 votes.


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Closets are for clothes.
--Bumper Sticker