Friday, July 27, 2007


The silence. . .

And shouldn't it be greater than death?

Who are we to go unnoticed?
The simple shadows of who you once were are all we are now.
Do you remember us or does your heart yearn too far to forget?
We haunt so gently along your floor, growing tall and fearsome,
perhaps pulling your eyes to one side to glance behind you.
That candlelight will not save you from your regret.

We devour the light and it's hopeful promises,
leaving you to midnight letters toward those who ghost your heart.
You cannot remember what you have said and that, dear one,
is because we have devoured your memory as well.
However, the sweetness of amnesia is far too great for you;
we so mercifully allow your rememberance of the despair and the woe, it is what you deserve.

How dare you change and cast your shadows aside.
How dare you abandon your withered self and move on.
How dare you reduce us to such an unhealthy place as the past.

Cruelty is no matter.

Our lithe fingers will crawl sweetly around your throat in the night
and we will press our icy lips to your ear and send you deathmares
about us, about who you once were.
Our hands will close over your lips; your eyes will be wide in terror.
You will remember once more what you so dearly had forgotten
and you will soon be a being of the past and all that will remain

is silence.



A young blonde woman in New Orleans was so depressed that she decided to
end her life by throwing herself into the Mississippi River. She went up to the bridge and was about to leap into the water when a handsome young sailor saw her tottering on the edge crying.

He took pity on her and said, "Look, you have so much to live for. I'm off to Europe in the morning, and if you like, I can stow you away on my ship. I'll take good care of you and bring you food every day." Moving closer, he slipped his arm around her shoulder and added, "I'll keep you happy and you'll keep me happy."

The girl nodded yes, after all, what did she have to lose? Perhaps a fresh start in Europe would give her life new meaning.

That night the sailor brought her aboard and hid her in a lifeboat. From then on every night he brought her three sandwiches and piece of fruit, and they made passionate love until dawn. Three weeks later, during a routine inspection, she was discovered by the captain.

“What are you doing here?" the captain asked.

"I have an arrangement with one of the sailors,“ she explained. "I get food and a trip to Europe, and he's screwing me."

"HE CERTAINLY IS," the captain said. "This is the Chalmette Ferry!"

(Note from JG - Chalmette is a suburb of N.O.)

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Thursday, July 26, 2007

Creativity And Inspiration

In a recent article, I read, "Creativity is the buzzword in many a modern boardroom, yet some in business still complain that too many newly minted MBAs are competent but uninspired, well-versed in the technical theory but lacking in imagination."

While growing up, I was always looking for new projects. My mother encouraged me to make Christmas gifts for the relatives every year. It was challenging and fun and exposed me to a whole new world of creativity and innovation.

In ninth grade, I started going to the Baum School of Art, where I was encouraged to try new avenues for my inventive mind. Later, I majored in art education at Kutztown University. I was challenged yet delighted with every new medium I tried. This experience opened so many new inspired paths that I continue to pursue throughout my professional and personal life.

I have found inspiration in my travels to choose new techniques for expressing my own unique designs. My paintings on wood, the felt designs, stained glass, and needlework all came from my drawings. Some of the needlework seemed so flat and boring; however, I made the canvas come alive with my own inventiveness and imagination.

I love teaching art and interacting with children. I inspired my own children to express themselves in their own unique ways. Being creative affects the emotions of the heart and allows us to dream. I have no time for TV: I'm a doer, not a watcher. Day-to-day routines become monotonous, almost depressing; however, new challenges fill me with energy, making me rise and shine!

Whether you find inspiration through art or from this beautiful world we live in, remember to share it with those around you and those you love. My mind is always creating new ventures for my hands and my heart. I love and embrace life and all of its creativity and inspiration. And, most importantly, creative energy will help you to be healthier and happier.

By Ardath Rodale

Monday, July 23, 2007

MICHIGAN: Motor-Free City

Every summer more than a million car enthusiasts flock to the Motor City suburbs for the Woodward Dream Cruise vintage-car rally. Since 2005, the Sierra Club's Building Environmental Community (BEC) Campaign has been celebrating cleaner alternatives to hot rods at the Green Cruise (above).

Having fun is key: Many participants wear costumes, and all travel by non-fossil-fuel-burning methods, including bicycles, Roller-blades, and even wheeled canoes. Organizers expect a crowd of 700 at the Ferndale, Michigan, event, which takes place August 11, a week before the Dream Cruise. Participants who sign the Green Cruise Pledge agree to use nonpolluting forms of transit at least once a week. They can also chart their annual green miles, and the Oakland County BEC office will calculate how much carbon dioxide they save. "The Green Cruise reminds us that we all can opt for pollution-free forms of transportation," says Green Cruise cofounder Shirley Bavonese. "Not only make the switch but also celebrate the choice."

For more information, visit

By Monica Woelfel

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Thursday, June 21, 2007

From a diary of a Birthday Celebrant

Last week was my birthday and i didn't feel very well waking up that morning. I went downstairs for breakfast hoping my wife would be pleasant and say, "happy birthday!", and possibly have a present for me. As it turned out, she barely said good morning, let alone "happy birthday. "i thought... Well, that's marriage for you, but the kids will remember.

My kids came into breakfast and didn't say a word. So when i left for the office, i was feeling pretty low and somewhat despondent. As i walked into my office, my secretary jane said, "good morning, boss, happy birthday!"

it felt a little better that at least someone had remembered. I worked until one o'clock and then jane knocked on my door and said, "you know, it's such a beautiful day outside, and it's your birthday, let's go out to lunch, just you and me."

i said, "thanks jane, that's the greatest thing i've heard all day. Let's go!"

we went to lunch. But we didn't go where we normally would go. We dined instead at a little place with a private table. We had two martinis each and i enjoyed the meal tremendously on the way back to the office, jane said, "you know, it's such a beautiful day... We don't need to go back to the office, do we?"

i responded, "i guess not. What do you have in mind?" she said, "let's go to my apartment."

after arriving at her apartment jane turned to me and said, "boss, if you don't mind, i'm going to step into the bedroom for a moment. I'll be right back."

"ok." i nervously replied.

She went into the bedroom and, after a couple of minutes, she came out carrying a huge birthday cake... Followed by my wife, kids, and dozens of my friends and co-workers, all singing "happy birthday".

And i just sat there...

On the couch...



Wednesday, June 13, 2007

The Origins of State Names

The Origins of State Names (Pics)
You know the names of all 50 states…but do you know where any of them come from? Here’s the best information we could find on the origin of each.

ALABAMA. Possibly from the Creek Indian word alibamo, meaning "we stay here."

ALASKA. From the Aleutian word alakshak, which means "great lands," or "land that is not an island."

ARIZONA. Taken either from the pima Indian words ali shonak, meaning "little spring," or from the Aztec word arizuma, meaning "silver-bearing."

ARKANSAS. The French somehow coined it from the name of the Siouan Quapaw tribe.

CALIFORNIA. According to one theory, Spanish settlers names it after a utopian society described in a popular 16th-century novel called Serged de Esplandian.

COLORADO. Means "red" in Spanish. The name was originally applied to the Colorado River, whose waters are reddish with canyon clay.

CONNECTICUT. Taken from the Mohican word kuenihtekot, which means "long river place."

DELAWARE. Named after Lord De La Warr, a governor of Virginia. Originally used only to name the Delaware River.

FLORIDA. Explorer Ponce de Leon named the state Pascua Florida - "flowery Easter"—on Easter Sunday in 1513.

GEORGIA. Named after King George II of England, who charted the colony in 1732.

HAWAII. An English adaptation of the native word owhyhee, which means "homeland."

IDAHO. Possibly taken from the Kiowa Apache word for the Comanche Indians.

ILLINOIS. The French bastardization of the Algonquin word illini, which means "men."

INDIANA. Named by English-speaking settlers because the territory was full of Indians.

IOWA. The Sioux word for "beautiful land," or "one who puts to sleep."

KANSAS. Taken from the Sioux word for "south wind people," their name for anyone who lived south of Sioux territory.

KENTUCKY. Possibly derived from the Indian word kan-tuk-kee, meaning "dark and bloody ground." Or kan-tuc-kec, "land of green reeds", or ken-take, meaning "meadowland."

LOUISIANA. Named after French King Louis XIV.

MAINE. The Old French word for "province."

MARYLAND. Named after Queen Henrietta Maria, wife of English King George I.

MASSACHUSETTS. Named after the Massachusetts Indian tribe. Means "large hill place."

MICHIGAN. Most likely from the Chippewa word for "great water." micigama.

MINNESOTA. From the Sioux word for "sky tinted" or "muddy water."

MISSISSIPPI. Most likely taken from the Chippewa words mici ("great") and zibi ("river").

MISSOURI. From the Algonquin word for "muddy water."

MONTANA. Taken from the Latin word for "mountainous."

NEBRASKA. From the Otos Indian word for "broad water."

NEVADA. Means "snow-clad" in Spanish.

NEW HAMPSHIRE. Capt. John Mason, one of the original colonists, named it after his English home county of Hampshire.

NEW JERSEY. Named after the English Isle of Jersey.

NEW MEXICO. The Spanish name for the territory north of the Rio Grande.

NEW YORK. Named after the Duke of York and Albany.

NORTH AND SOUTH CAROLINA. From the Latin name Carolus; named in honor of King Charles I of England.

NORTH AND SOUTH DAKOTA. Taken from the Sioux word for "friend," or "ally."

OHIO. Means "great," "fine," or "good river" in Iriquois.

OKLAHOMA. The Choctaw word for "red man."

OREGON. Possibly derived from Ouaricon-sint, the French name for the Wisconsin River.

PENNSYLVANIA. Named after William Penn, Sr., the father of the colony’s founder, William Penn. Means "Penn’s woods."

RHODE ISLAND. Named "Roode Eylandt" (Red Island) because of its red clay.

TENNESSEE. Named after the Cherokee tanasi villages along the banks of the Little Tennessee River.

TEXAS. Derived from the Caddo Indian word for "friend," or "ally."

UTAH. Means "upper," or "higher," and was originally the name that Navajos called the Shoshone tribe.

VERMONT. A combination of the French words vert ("green") and mont ("mountain").

VIRGINIA AND WEST VIRGINIA. Named after Queen Elizabeth I of England, the "virgin" queen, by Sir Walter Raleigh in 1584.

WASHINGTON. Named after George Washington.

WISCONSIN. Taken from the Chippewa word for "grassy place."

WYOMING. Derived from the Algonquin word for "large prairie place."

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Sunday, June 10, 2007

Really beautiful?

Really beautiful? (Beautiful photo)

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