Wednesday, March 30, 2011

"My Guy"

I knew the very first time I saw him that I wanted to get to know Mikey really well.  Now 45 years later, I do know him well.  There are still surprises, mind you, but you can't live with someone for 45 years and not know most of what there is to know!  We've had a lot of good experiences and fun times and we've both realized that sometimes we are Great together.

So, in honor of our upcoming anniversery, I thought I'd share 45 Things.   just a little list of 45 things I learned (and mostly like)  about "My Guy".

1.  He is very smart.
2.  He can fix just about anything that breaks.
3.  He likes to read.
4.  He's very curious and loves learning new things.
5.  He is a much better cook than I!
6.  He hates to go shopping for clothes.  HATES it!!
7.  He is very allergic to cats.
8.  He is very sentimental about things.
9.  He is a very good driver.  If I am ever in an accident situation, I hope he is driving!  His reaction times are excellent.
10.  He loves babies and little kids.

11.  He is a great "Poppa."    
12.  He has a lot of self-confidence.
13.  He is extremely supportive of me and my interests.
14.  He is not terribly athletic nor interested in sports....except GOLF!
15.  He played the trombone in H.S. band.
16.  He has a Bachelor's Degree in  Chemistry and a Master's Degree in Business.
17.  He's crazy about dogs.
18.  His favorite color is blue.
19.  If he were wealthy he would have a garage full of  interesting cars.
20.  He is the middle child of seven!
21.  He always loved to sing, and discovered he loved acting too, but not until he was over 40!
22.  Despite never doing a thing to stay fit, he has always been  incredibly healthy.
23.  He is not a natural dancer, but he would dance with me fairly often if I asked.
24.  He changed careers at age 50!
25.  He was pretty much a Liberal when we met.  He has changed to a staunch Republican bit by bit.
26.  His middle name is Edward.  He and Maddie-the-Great have the same initials:  M.E.D.
27.  His heritage is Irish and Polish.
28.  He has a great sense of humor (and he laughs at my jokes).
29.  He is proud of Ratchlet's, M-t-G's, and my accomplishments.
30.  He likes all sorts of gadgets and leather goods, but he LOVES tools.
31.  He hates all facets of writing and paperwork!  (He will NEVER have a blog or a FB page!)
32.  He has a great sense of balance.  (I don't think he has fallen since he was a little kid.)
33.  He is great at home decorating things, like painting, wallpaper, cabinets, plumbing!!
34.  He despises Irish Soda Bread, raisins, and oatmeal.
35.  He loves tradition, especially at holidays.
36.  Neither he nor I are very good at making new friends.
37.  He is very aware and critical of poor grammar or spelling.
38.  He has had a beard for many, many years.
39.  He hates hot weather.
40.  He has no real "vices".
41.  He has a big temper, which he has become much more adept at controlling.
42.  He cannot draw.
43.  He has been known to cry at the theater (and sometimes movies).
44.  He is extremely generous and gives great presents.
45.  He has put up with me and my foibles for 45 years!

He is "My Guy" and here's to lots more years together!

Tuesday, March 29, 2011

A Cappella #4

As we get closer to our actual wedding anniversary date (April 2) each year, I find myself going over all the memories surrounding our wedding day.  It gets a little bit harder every year.  I'm sure that I have forgotten details, even details that should be easy to remember. 

The worst of it is that there really isn't anyone to ask.  As I mentioned the other day, a great number of the people at our wedding have died.  Of those still with us,  Little Sis was only 7, she probably doesn't remember very much at all.  Mikey's sisters and our friend, Bonnie, might remember a bit here or there, but it wasn't their own wedding and you just don't remember things about weddings you attend, and besides they all live hundreds of miles from here and we rarely see them.  What about Mikey, you ask??  Ha!  The big guy has trouble remembering yesterday much less 45 years ago!   And I can't even check the wedding photos!!

Why not, you say?  Because when it comes to photos and photography, I have the absolute WORST luck on the planet!  In fact I wrote about it early on in my blogging history.  Here's an excerpt from that post, to help you understand....

Wednesday, November 18, 2009**

....As I look at other blogs, they seem to be loaded with a ton of wonderful candid family shots, or beautiful landscapes, or even abstract photos that are mysterious or funny or something. I'm so jealous. "So," you say, "Why don't you add more photos of your own?" (a perfectly logical question.) Well, there's a reason for that, Cameras hate me. Seriously! They do!! 
It's not that I don't think I look good in photographs, or that I don't know how to use a camera. Oh no, its much more basic than that! 
Whether digital, or Poloroid, or a little point and shoot gadget loaded with "Kodachrome" film, (does anyone still use film??)whenever any camera senses that I am in a place where photos are being taken, some little cosmic polterqeist who hates me for some reason, manages to do something to ensure that no good or even passable photos will result until I am no longer around. (Hearing your snorts in the background!) You don't believe me, do you? Well, read on my friends!

The very first experience I had with "Dirty Tricks Photography" was by far the worst. It was my wedding day! (I can hear your gasps, "No, not that day! Nooooo! Oh yes, My Wedding Day!) My cousin was married at that time to a really nice guy who was a professional photographer. As their wedding gift to us PhotoHubby offered to take the photos at the wedding. We were thrilled. We couldn't afford a professional photographer so this would be wonderful. How generous of them!!

The morning of the wedding, just after I got up, my mother snapped a quick shot of me sitting on the sofa in my nightgown with my hair still in rollers (this was a long time ago!) and looking like the walking dead. And then a short time later, after I had taken out the rollers and sort of combed out my hair, she took another quick snap of me in the mirror, still in my nightgown, with my veil perched on the top of my head. (I looked like I was playing "dress up" or something.)
Anyway, shortly thereafter, PhotoHubby arrived and shot, and flashed, and focused constantly the entire rest of the day. He was Everywhere, behind the priest on the altar during Mass, walking backwards back down the aisle with us, at the reception, cutting our cake....everywhere! He told us that night that he had shot several rolls and thought he had some great shots. He said he should have proof sheets for us in a week or so. I was so grateful and excited to see them. And off we went gleefully to our "honeymoon" (ahh, that's another story).  
So, we're back at my aunt's house for dinner about a month later and my cousin and PhotoHubby were there as well. No one had said anything about the pictures (we didn't want to seem pushy), but I was anxious to see them. After the meal was over, PhotoHubby said, "I'm afraid I have some bad news." (Oh, crap! This can't be good!)

It seems that he and his partner in the photography business had had a huge blow-up about 3 days after our wedding, and said partner had, unbeknownst to PhotoHubby, packed up everything that was in the studio and left town. We were properly sympathetic and outraged for him. But then he made it clear that the jerk took everything, cameras, negatives, equipment, film. Film?? Our film?? All of it??? Even the stuff that didn't belong to him???? Yep, all gone, and PhotoHubby had no idea where he went. Well, there you go! There was absolutely no possibility of getting it back. I was heartbroken, but I managed not to cry until we got home. We couldn't even ask for our money back!

The sad fact was that no one else took any photos because Photo-Hubby was a "Professional" and was all over the place taking photos.

So ladies and gentlemen of the jury, in summation, poor little bride (me) has exactly two photographs recording her happy her nightgown with a veil on her head! Both of which are buried in a box of photos so I can't even see THEM!  And the are no photos of the groom (Mikey) at all. See, because it hates me, the poltergeist planted that evil idea in the mind of the partner, leaving us with zilch!....
There, that is the story of my wedding photos and why I am not exactly sure what color my flowers were, or what Mikey looked like, or who all was there.  All I have is my fading memory.  Believe me, it's not the same!

**p.s.  I wrote some more photos stories in that post.  If you want to read the rest go to:

Monday, March 28, 2011

Mellow Yellow Monday (No.4)


It's time for another Mellow Yellow Monday!

Isn't the yellow rose the most beautiful flower? I have always thought so. In fact, yellow roses, just like those below, are what I carried when I got married. There was a bouquet with a few more than this, but they were this color yellow and there was baby's breath, and some ribbon, and some greenery, and they went with me down the aisle.

Well, at least I think they looked like this, it's a little hard to remember, after all it was a LONG time Saturday it will be 45 years since I carried those pretty yellow roses down the aisle on my way to marry Mikey!! And for every year since, Mikey has given me pretty yellow roses on our anniversary. Isn't that just the best? That's my Big Guy!

Of course, I could just go to verify the color of the roses in my wedding photos. Oh wait....nope....I can't do that....darn it! Come back tomorrow and I'll tell you why! In the meantime, enjoy the lovely yellow roses in honor of Mellow Yellow Monday!

My 4th contribution to Mellow Yellow Monday! Hope you liked it! Go to if you want to join the ranks of lovers of all things YELLOW!

♪♪....They call me Mellow Yellow!....♪
                ~~ Donovan

Sunday, March 27, 2011

"They Didn't Believe Me"

Mikey was 20 and I was 19 when we got married.  I would venture to say that a large majority of the people who knew us, thought we were too young, that it wouldn't last, that it was a BIG mistake.  No one ever said that to me but I know that it is true.  You could see it on their faces. 

We never thought so then.  Now when I think back, I can see how they might have come to that conclusion.  We were awfully young.  We had no money, we had no jobs, we had no prospects, but we had each other.  We were convinced that we would be just fine.  Nevertheless, "They Didn't Believe Me" when I said so.

And now in exactly six days we will reach our 45th wedding anniversary.  45 years!  Together!  Not all rainbows and roses, but not all black clouds and thunder either.  We made a life together. 

Ours was a small wedding, held in the chapel of the nuns' residence of Mikey's home parish.  Our reception was held at the home of one of my aunts.  We had only a maid of honor and a best man, no other attendants.  My walk down the aisle on my dad's arm was only about 20 feet from beginning to end.  Although the chapel was crowded (I loved that!), there were less than 50 people there, including the priest and the photographer!!

Not very many people who were at our wedding are still living.  My parents and Mikey's parents are gone, our best man and maid of honor are gone, all but one of the aunts and uncles are gone. 

Others we have lost track of.  I don't even remember everyone who was there.  I know we had several friends from school, but today only one of them is still a part of our lives.  As for the rest, our lives diverged almost immediately after the wedding and we never saw them again. 

The result is that if we were to have an anniversary party, the only original wedding guests who could be there are few.   My sister, three of Mikey's sisters, one uncle, our friend, Bonnie, and us.  That's a pretty small group.

So all those people who feared we would not make a success of our marriage were wrong.  Sadly though, most of them are no longer a part of our lives and cannot see that we are still together after 45 years!

Even though "They Didn't Believe Me", it was a good decision.  The bottom line is that at just 19 and 20 years old, we managed to know that we were supposed to be together.  And for 44 years, 51 weeks, and counting, we were right! 

Most of them would be surprised.   Frankly, sometimes, so are we!

Friday, March 25, 2011

"Take Me Out to the Ballgame"

March 31, 2011 is Opening Day for Major League Baseball.  Lots of folks get excited, looking forward to that first "Play Ball!"  I might have mentioned before that I am not one of them.

You see, I am not much of a sports fan, I never have been.  The truth is that baseball is probably at the bottom of the list of what sport I am willing to watch. My dad and my sister both loved baseball. Being from the northside of Chicago, their team of choice was (of course) the Cubs. Dad would take my sister and a couple of our cousins to a game at Wrigley every so often. They all loved it. I was already married so I got a reprieve! My sister was (and is) such a Cubs fan that she follows the stats even though she hasn't lived in Chicago for at least 20 years.  She knows about 20 times as much about the sport as I do.  And that's just fine with me!

My dad used to tell the story of the only time he ever took me to a baseball game. I was about 5, I think. I was really excited to be going.  Daddy was going to "Take Me Out to the Ballgame!!"  When we got there I wanted a hot dog, then a bag of peanuts, then a drink, maybe some cotton candy, and finally some popcorn. After I finished all of them, I was ready to go home. We'd only been there about 45 minutes!!  It's funny but I can still remember hearing the vendors hawking their stuff, "Redhots! Getch'yur Redhots right chere!" But I don't remember a single thing about the game!  Even then baseball was not my game.  :)

The only other time that you could say I had a brush with baseball was that I lived in Vero Beach, FL when I was a little girl.  If you are (or know someone who is) a true dyed-in-the-wool baseball fan, you will know that Vero Beach was the spring training camp for the Brooklyn Dodgers and later the Los Angeles Dodgers. When I was there however, it was back during the days of Walter O'Malley and Walter Alston and Branch Rickey; with players like Roy Campanella, Duke Snider, Maury Wills, PeeWee Reese, Jackie Robinson, Don Drysdale, Gil Hodges.   (It was a looooong time ago!)  Even I had heard of them!

And all those baseball greats played on Holman Field at Dodgertown right there is my home town!  We weren't so blase about seeing celebrities back then and the possibility of watching Snider or Reese, or Robinson play in person was the dream of nearly every boy in town.  It was even the dream of a few of the girls and certainly about 90% of the Dads.  In fact, I'm pretty sure that school was closed for the first game each year.  They had to, hardly anyone was in school, they were out at the game!

The whole town looked forward to having the Dodgers  Spring Training.  The players pretty much stayed to themselves, at least that's the way it seemed to me.  I don't recall actually seeing any of the players in town, but this was way before TV took over our lives, so I'm not sure I would have known a baseball player from a baseball bat! 

I was reading about Dodgertown a while back and I found out something I never knew. 
....And history was made here. And not just baseball history. Branch Rickey brought spring training to this abandoned naval air station in 1948 because the old barracks would be under the control of the Brooklyn Dodgers, and thus free of the local segregation ordinances that blocked the mingling of the races in hotels and restaurants throughout Florida until the 1960s. At Dodgertown, the Dodgers could be a team on and off the field. How much of the integrated team’s considerable on-field success during the 1950s may have been born of that? “It brought the team together, there’s no question about that,” said O’Malley of the Dodgertown intimacy, “and at the most important time of the year.”

                   ~~ Charles Fountain, February 24, 2009

Well, that explains a lot!  I only lived in Vero from age 7 to 13, I wouldn't have been too interested in the whys and wherefores, but I guess the players didn't come into town much, so maybe I didn't see any of them.  God, what a horrible thing segregation was!  I can say that with complete honesty and conviction, after all we were Northerners living in the South.  Yankees who didn't support or even understand segregation.  However, I can only say that from the prospective of a much older me!  Back then I just didn't care about baseball or it's players.  I was a girlie girl who played school, had dolls, and hated sports!  I wouldn't get upset about segregation until I was a little older!  I digress....

Nonetheless, it was kind of neat to have people recognize the name of the town just about every time I mentioned I had lived in Vero Beach.  "That's the Dodgers' Spring Training camp, right??"  Right!

Vero Beach and Dodgertown remained the host of Spring Training for the Dodgers from 1948 up until 2009....61 years!  That's a lot of baseball.  I don't know why the Dodgers left exactly and I don't know what's happening there now.  Did another team move in?  Has it just been abandoned?  Is it being turned into condos??  I have no idea, but it sure is hard to think that the spirits of all those baseball greats no longer have occasion to mingle with the current players out there in Dodgertown. 

And no more little kids and their Dads looking forward to Spring Training with the Brooklyn Dodgers right there in their town of Vero Beach.   No more "Take Me Out to the Ballgame."  No more Dodgertown.  It's so sad....

Thursday, March 24, 2011


I had to go to the dentist again today, which is not my favorite thing to do!  So I was going to write about my misery and share it with all of you lucky people.  As I began to write, my words became more and more familiar.  Hmmm, I think I wrote about this before! 

So I went to look at some of the older posts.  Bingo!!  There it was, March 19, 2010, "Fixing a Hole".   Hmmmm, almost precisely one year ago  Reading through it I realized it was pretty much exactly what happened today too.  So rather than reinvent the wheel, I will just re-post last year's entry.  In fact, it may turn up again every year, because there is no way my teeth will get any better as the years to by.  (Sorry if you read it last year, you may be excused!)

Anyway, this is how I felt one year ago at the dentist and it is how I felt today at the dentist.  Almost a complete re-play of the whole experience!  Well, at least I'm consistent!!

Friday, March 19, 2010
"Fixing a Hole"

I hate my teeth. I have always hated my teeth. Always!
I don't spend my life brushing, flossing, polishing, cleaning, etc., but I do brush a couple of times a day and floss fairly frequently. I even sometimes use a flouride rinse. And I get cleanings twice a year! Despite my care, they aren't a pretty sparkling white. They are small. My mouth is small and there's no room to manuever. (Pediatric instruments have to be used!) They are a little crooked. They are sensitive to cold. They have spaces where they shouldn't have spaces. They aren't particularly strong or healthy. They aren't even. They collect tartar and plaque like some people collect recipes! More often than not, there seems to be a need for "fixing a hole!" And so they need constant attention it seems. And the worst part of it, is that its not just my attention they need. Oh no! They require a....dunh, dunh, dunh....Dentist!

May I just say, it case you haven't figured it out, that for me going to the dentist ranks right at the bottom of my "things I don't want to do" list, along with having a baby and jumping out of an airplane! I work myself into a tizzy over having to go to the dentist. By the time of the appointment, I am a wreck from the anticipation of whatever torture the dentist will inflict upon me this time!

Of course, my head keeps trying to remember that I have survived before. Doesn't help too much. My gut knows!! There's a long, long way between survival and no pain!

Unfortunately, I am of the age that had dental experiences before the development of high speed drills, or lidocaine prior to injections. Headphones, TV, movies, music, etc. weren't even on the horizon. That's right, back in the dark ages of dentistry, when the height of technology was "rinse and spit"!!

I have tried hard over the years to act like a grown up, but unfortunately that's really hard for me. You see, for me dental pain (especially hitting a nerve), is the absolute worst pain I have ever felt! Bar none! I'm a wuss with a very low pain threshhold. I quiver, I cry, I tense up, I cry some more, and I want to run out of there at the speed of light. I hate it.

Of course, to be fair, it's gotten better. I finally found a dentist (a FEMALE dentist, I might add) that understands about pain and is all in favor of using sufficient Nitrous Oxide to keep me in the chair long enough to complete what needs doing! That helps a LOT. I don't go to sleep of course, but I do get pretty relaxed, so for the most part, I tolerate the work fairly well....for a wuss.

I went to the dentist yesterday. I was there from 1:15 to about 2:30 p.m. Obviously I survived. (My dentist truly is a gem!) Unfortunately the injection of Novocaine didn't numb my jaw enough. So I had to have another! That was not fair!! I've never needed two before! Once the second shot kicked in I couldn't feel a thing....nothing at all. So between the numbing and the Nitrous, she was able to finish up fairly quickly. Once the Nitrous was gone from my system, I felt an enormous sense of relief. The hole was fixed!! Yay! It was over. I could leave. My stomach didn't hurt anymore. I didn't feel nervous anymore. I was free!

After a couple of hours I realized I was hungry and I went to have something to eat. BIG MISTAKE! I realized that even after 2 1/2 hours my cheek, my lips (top and bottom) and my whole lower jaw was dead! Not just mostly dead, but compeletely and totally dead as a doornail dead! My speech was distorted. My smile was crooked. (I looked like I'd had a stroke!) I couldn't open my mouth all the way. I couldn't feel temperatures. I dribbled while trying to drink from a straw! And I couldn't feel the difference between the food and my cheek when chewing!! Those 2 shots of Novocaine did me in and did not completely wear off until almost 7:30 p.m.!!!

So yeah, I hate my teeth. I have always hated my teeth. Really!
Yep, that's how it was today too....again! All things considered, there are other experiences I would rather re-live....lots and lots of them.   Why do I think this one will be the time loop I get stuck in!??!  My own personal "Groundhog Day", and no Bill Murray in sight!  Damn!

Friday, March 18, 2011

"Things I Couldn't Say" (aka Dear So and So....)

Dear So and So...

Dear DIY Photographers,

There are so many really capable do-it-yourself-ers who write a blog.  You do wonderfully work and are so creative and capable!   I love being able to see what you have done to update your homes.  Some of the furniture and room makeovers are so amazing!  Thanks to all of you who share and inspire the rest of us!

HOWEVER, please, please,  please take your before and after pictures from the same place. Don't change the angle, don't change the distance, don't try to be "arty", don't try to focus on little details UNLESS you get a full-room shot (or as close as you can) too. When you do that your photos are much more pleasing and we can really appreciate the final result when we can see the whole thing!!  Otherwise, I frequently have a hard-time believing it's the same room or same piece of furniture!


Dear Internal Revenue Service,

Earlier this week, you received the 2011 tax return from our household.  I would like to assure you that the return is a really, truly, totally bona fide return from us.  I realize you have NEVER received our annual return before 11:59 p.m. on April 15, so that is why I wanted to reassure you that this is not a scam or and imitation!

I do not know what lit the fire under.....uhmm....inspired the Big Guy to get it done and out so early, Though it probably had to do with hoping your response (i.e., our REFUND!) will be sent to us early too!

So, in the spirit of quid pro quo, let's get on the ball up there in Washington and cut that check!  Baby ....well ok, Momma....needs a new pair of shoes, ya know!!
Your friend,

Taxpayer Mel
p.s.  By the way, I wouldn't count on this happening again next year.  This may be a one-time event, never to occur again.  Just sayin'.........

Dear Bloggers,

For those of you who have chosen to invite advertisers to your part of Blogland, I understand why you have done so.  Added income (even small additions) is usually welcome in any household.  I get that and it's ok with me.

However, some of the advertisers are getting totally out of hand!  I was visiting one of my favorite blogs the other day.  I was about midway through reading the posting when suddenly up popped a commercial....right there in the middle of her post!  It was just like an ad spot on TV, complete with a filmed ad with music and a voiceover!!  I'm not sure how long it was, because I left the blog in the middle of the ad.

One of the reasons I don't watch TV is because of the preponderance of advertising.  It's annoying and of no interest to me.  Ads appear on almost every Internet site.  Most online games show advertising while the game is "loading".  Products and companies are being promoted everywhere these days, even to the extent of renaming Bowl Games, teams, and stadiums.  Movies are no longer careful to avoid showing brand names on props!  And here we have advertising intruding into blogging.

I HATE IT!!   Enough already!  The amount of money spent on all this advertising could end hunger in the entire world, with enough left over to put a serious dent in poverty and want!  Hmmm, now there's something to think about!

I don't know about you but if I were to use ads (which I wouldn't), I would surely insist that they be unobtrusive!


Dear US Postal Service,

Could you please tell me what happened to all those mailboxes that used to dot the country on just about every other corner??

Trying to mail a letter or whatever now requires a 20 minute drive to get to the nearest Post Office.   It is very inconvenient.  You are charging nearly 50 cents per ounce in postage.  Surely a little of that money could go toward putting back a few mailboxes close to residential areas!

I would truly appreciate it.

Thank you,

Dear Daylight Savings Time,

Joy, Joy!  Oh Happy Day!!!

Welcome Back!!!  I missed you!  I seriously suffer when the sun disappears by 5:00 in the afternoon.  With daylight hanging around until 8:15 or later, I no longer feel like the days are only 6 hours long!

Of course, if I didn't sleep til Noon....(ahem)      :) 


So go on over to to add your own version of Dear So and So!

Wednesday, March 16, 2011

"When Irish Eyes Are Smiling"

Everybody is Irish on St. Patrick's Day!!!

May your blessings outnumber
The shamrocks that grow,
And may trouble avoid you
Wherever you go.

~Irish Blessing

Hope you all have a great St. Paddy's Day!

A Cappella #3

The news out of Japan just keeps getting worse and worse.  In case, you have been out of touch for a while, the island nation of Japan has had three major life changing physical events within just a few days.  The people of Japan are reeling as each catastrophe tops the one before.

First the earthquake, the largest one ever to hit Japan....8.9 on the Richter scale.  That's enormous.  In a highly populated area like Japan with a relatively small landmass, a huge earthquake can affect nearly every part of the country and nearly every person in it.  Aftershocks, often large scale ones, continue to rattle windows and cause anxiety among the people, already trying to put their lives back together.

Closely following the earthquake, a tsunami was created by the shifting and rumbling fault lines.  A huge tsunami, rolling inland at an incredible speed, devastating everything in its path....everything....people, houses, businesses, animals, automobiles, sea-going ships and boats, farm land, airplanes....all swept away by the powerful surge of water that neither stopped nor slowed until the energy of the wave had finally been spent and the water came to a stop.  It stopped in areas of the island that had not been "shoreline" property for milennia. Then it finally began to recede back to whence it came, leaving total destruction behind.

Anyone who saw any of the film of those surging waters rolling ever onward through what had been home to thousands of people, could not help but be stunned by some of the images.  Small cars bobbing like corks in a bathtub tumbling over and around each other, with the occasional boat or small ship carried along as well.  Unbelievable!

Since the advent of "instant news" and satellite links, we have seen many images of disasters from all over the world.  We have become somewhat inured to photos of collapsed buildings or windblown trees and signs, or streets flooded by rainfall.  There is instant coverage of hurricanes, tornadoes, flooding rains, snowstorms, and even earthquakes.  But none of that coverage has ever had the impact of watching the sea roll relentlessly inland.  It was awesome, in the truest sense of the word.
Awesome is both incorrectly and over-used today.  The actual definition of the root word, awe, is:  an overwhelming feeling of reverence, admiration, fear, etc., produced by that which is grand, sublime, extremely powerful, or the like.  A tsunami is a short-lived but devastating event that is truly awesome to observe.  To experience one in person must be completely terrifying. 

But still, the earthquake was not done with creating havoc fear, panic, and devastation.  The moving earth also slammed several nuclear power sites, causing extensive damage and rising fears of a meltdown of the core and more harm to come resulting from radiation leaks.   The most recent news stated that officials have pulled out the workers who were working desperately to cool the core and keep the radiation contained.  Evidently, their efforts have not been successful and the danger to those workers is no longer being held at bay.  By stopping their efforts what will happen to those nuclear reactors??  I am unclear about that, but I am sure you all are as aware of the situation as I am.  In fact, probably more so.

The experts both in Japan and around the world seem to agree that the danger from radiation is mostly limited to the immediate areas surrounding the damaged reactors.  Areas of Japan will be at risk, but there is very little danger to the rest of the world.  I certainly hope they are correct.

I grew up at a time when the threat of nuclear war was a fact of life.  In our naivete, people built bomb shelters and practiced school drills for what to do in the event of a atomic, then nuclear event.  I spent a number of years in my childhood being fearful that the "Russians" were going to attack the U.S. with nuclear weapons.  We soon learned that such an attack would be much more devastating than we had thought.  The bomb shelters and school drills eventually disappeared as we realized just how ineffective they would be.  If we were attacked there would be no place to hide and probably not too many survivors.

After the dismantling of the USSR and the signing of disarmament treaties between the major countries, we grew to feel safe from the threat of nuclear annihilation. Again, in our naivete, we thought that only an act of aggression would result in the people being affected by a nuclear event.  Until Chernobyl. 

I support nuclear power.  I really do.  I believe that the nuclear power sites, like those in Japan, are shielded, and cooled, and protected from harm.  I believe they are as safe as we can make them and the risks from nuclear power are generally acceptable. 

As long as the earth stays still. 

At this point, the outcome of the problems at the reactors is not expected to be as extensive as Chernobyl.  That event was in 1986, 25 years ago.  Nuclear technology and safety has come a long way since then.  The range, scope, and extent of that final outcome will be much, much different than Chernobyl. The experts are sharing information about protection from radiation with the people of Japan.  The Japanese government is responding to the situation as well as it can.  I believe it was Yogi Berra who said, "It ain't over till it's over."  And that is most definitely true of this situation. The world will just have to wait and see....and hope for the best.

Lastly, I read  today from a couple of different sources, that there is also concern regarding volcano activity in Japan!  There has been an unconfirmed  report of unusual activity from a volcano because of the earthquake and there are fears that there may be an eruption. 

My dear God, how much more can these poor people stand?    How much more havoc and tragedy can the Earth inflict on civilization??  What more can happen? Without meaning to be flippant, I wonder a bit if those ancient Mayans, whose calendar stops at 2012, knew what they were talking about after all. 

In reality, it just doesn't bear thinking about. 


Monday, March 14, 2011

"Generation Landslide"

I have mentioned before that I am a proud member of the first year Baby Boomer generation.  All the good young men returned from WWII and immediately went about making babies (which might not have been their intention necessarily, but it was certainly the result!) 

The first round of those post-war babies was born in 1946, and this year we will collectively turn 65 years old.  All through our lives we have had reason to think  of 65 as officially "old".  That's retirement age, Social Security age, Medicare age; all things provided to old people.  Even though we no longer accept that title unilaterally, choosing to define old as sometime down the road, like 75 or 90, the sad fact is that our bodies are sinking further into decline and there's not a whole lot we can do to stop it.  Not only that but there are 14 (or so) more years on the horizon of "Boomers" reaching 65 and becoming seniors.  That will end up with a whole LOT of "seniors". 

People are staying healthy longer and living longer, which is great if you're a Boomer, but the smart leaders of the healthcare industry are gearing up for the large influx of older patients  needing services from doctors, clinics, hospitals, hospices, emergency rooms, nursing homes, skilled nursing facilities, assisted living facilities, and the like.  It is a serious concern and some hospitals have taken an innovative approach to handling this "Generation Landslide".

The following was taken from an Associated Press news article today.  This link will take you to the full article.   It seems to me to be an idea whose time has come!  What do you think??

[Excerpts - AP article, 03/13/11] 
WASHINGTON (AP) - Many hospitals run emergency rooms just for children. Now a few are opening ERs specially designed for seniors, without all the confusion and clamor and with a little more comfort.....

Modern ERs are best equipped to handle crises like gunshot wounds or car crashes, not the lengthy detective work it can take to unravel the multiple ailments that older people tend to show up with....
.....They're less likely to report chest pain with a heart attack, for instance, complaining instead of vague symptoms such as dizziness or nausea. Urinary tract infections sometimes cause enough confusion to be mistaken for dementia.

Seniors already make 17 million ER visits a year, and 1 in 5 Americans will be 65 or older by 2030....
The idea behind senior ERs: Put older patients in an area that's a bit calmer for team-based care to not just treat the problem that brought them to the hospital, but to uncover underlying problems - from depression to dementia to a home full of tripping hazards that might bring them back....
How does it work? Seniors still enter through the main ER, where triage nurses decide if they have an immediately life-threatening condition. Those patients stay in the regular ER with all its bells and whistles. But other seniors get the option of heading for these new special zones.....  
  • There, doors instead of curtains separate beds, tamping down the noise that can increase anxiety, confusion and difficulty communicating....
  • Nurses carry "pocket talkers," small amplifiers that hook to headphones so they don't have to yell if a patient's hard of hearing. 
  • Mattresses are thicker, and patients who don't need to lay flat can opt for cushy reclining chairs instead; Moccia says people feel better when they can stay upright.
  • Nonskid floors guard against falls.
  • Forms are printed in larger type, to help patients read their care instructions when it's time to go home.
  • Pharmacists automatically check if patients' routine medications could cause dangerous interactions.
  • A geriatric social worker is on hand to arrange for Meals on Wheels or other resources.
  • .....the real change comes because nurses and doctors undergo training to dig deeper into patients' lives. While they're awaiting test results or treatments, every senior gets checked for signs of depression, dementia or delirium....
Nobody wants to get old, and nobody especially wants to get old and be sick.  If there was an ER geared to the needs and fears of the elderly (they're even older than the old!  We're no where near elderly! ....denial, denial....but I digress).  Anyway, if there were ER facilities like this available to our aging population both dedicated and committed to providing the right care for the oncoming generation landslide, it would be a benefit to all of us!!  I'm all in favor of the whole idea!  I hope it catches on!

Sunday, March 13, 2011

"Who Am I?"

I haven't indulged in a quiz for awhile, so I think it's time for another shot of "Who Am I?"  If you hate these things, don't feel obligated to read it.  Just come back another day!

My cell phone?   Is a hand-me-down from Mikey, who has moved on to the latest generation of phone-thingies!

My spouse?   Hard-working and smart

My hair?   In desperate need of a cut

My mother?  Missed!

My father?   Also missed!

My favorite possession?   Family photographs

My dream last night?  About my dad

My Favorite drink?   Iced tea

My favorite room?    Our library/computer space

My hobby?   Blogging!

My phobias?   Falling

My favorite day of the week?    All of them, now that I'm retired!!

My favorite breakfast?    I don't do breakfast very often

My biggest wish?   I really wish I had friends in Austin

My day?   Warm and sunny!  Almost perfect.

My evening?   On the computer and reading!

My usual attire?   Jeans and a shirt

My Friends?   Much too far away

My life?   Constantly surprises me

My mood?   Calm

My car?   2006 Kia Sportage

My favorite stores?   I love Big Lots, Dollar Store, Target, and bookstores!

My favorite color?   No surprise here, Yellow!

My last crying spell?     I don't remember, it's been a while.  How amazing!

My most frequent place to go?   Restaurants

My very best friends?    Rachlet, Mikey, Cathy, and Kathy

My favorite place to vacation?  Florida

My biggest regret?   I probably should have had more than one child.

There you go, more totally useless information to answer the burning question,  "Who Am I?"

Friday, March 11, 2011

"Things I Couldn't Say" (aka Dear So and So....)

My thoughts are with the people of Japan today. Godspeed to all the emergency workers, disaster response teams, police, firefighters, soldiers, and all others who are working non-stop to rescue and save the many people affected by today's 8.9 earthquake in Japan.

There is only one letter today, I think you all understand why!

Dear Planet Earth,

We all understand that sometimes you just have to shake things up a bit.  We understand that sometimes you get tired of being in one position for centuries and you just have to move and stretch and roll your shoulders and find a new position.  We all understand that this is a natural phenomenon that happens through no particular malicious intent.

However, your latest example of the power of moving earth was terrifying!  An 8.9 temblor??  That's enormous and the amount of death, damage, and danger nearly incalculable.  We all understand that this event was not intentional exactly and we try not to take it personally, but I wonder if anyone has ever explained that there are consequences that are devastating to living things.  When you shake around and shove things into different places and then, to make matters worse, you create gigantic tsunamis to flood and sweep away everything in its path, people die, animals die, buildings collapse, people and places disappear. 
So, could you please, try to let go of your powerful pressures in smaller doses, going as far as you did with the 8.9 earthquake in Japan today is too much.  We humans may be assaulting you in many, many ways trying to mold you to our needs and desires but we are a fragile species and don't always do what's right.  Still, many are innocent and do not deserve to suffer such horrible end.

Could you please find a comfortable position and just stay there?  Or at least, give us a warning that something big is about to happen? 

Or is this the warning?



Dear So and So...

Thursday, March 10, 2011

"Cabaret" (Part II)

Hey, I'm back, finally!!  Well, as I was saying before I was so rudely interrupted by a recalcitrant computer.....more about our Cabaret!

Our parish always held Festival the last two weekends before Lent.  So Ash Wednesdays always reminds of those Festival Days!  Now one small disclaimer, it has been over 20 years since Festival was part of my life, so some of the details may be a little foggy.  It's been a long time.  Onward, nevertheless, back to our story!

Because our audience came from all over the Chicago area, there were usually about 2,000 people a night!  The whole thing was worked out like a science with traffic patterns calculated, and maps and information staff all over.  And the audiences loved coming each year and looked forward to seeing their favorite performers from previous years!

In addition to the "small" room shows which were true "Cabaret" shows, the school had a gymnasium (full-size), and that became designated as the "big" room  (we were a clever lot )  ;)   Several long rows of tables were set up, with tablecloths, candles, and folding chairs.  When there was a big crowd (almost every night), that room would hold about 500 people!  There were several bars and food stations set up and waitresses would serve all through the show. 

Because of its capacity, the big room show would be longer and strove to be more professional with flashy costumes, large scale production numbers and a full orchestra.  Those shows were around an hour long.  They usually did 4 shows a night, sometimes 5 if it was very crowded.  That show usually had little or no storyline, it was more along the lines of a TV variety show (i.e., Carol Burnett, Dean Martin, etc.)  Now of course, we didn't have a big name star and about 95% of the performers were amateurs, but there were a few people that were pursuing a professional career.  We were all volunteers and were not paid.  The only ones who were paid guessed it.... the musicians!  (Musicians ALWAYS get paid.  They're funny that way; no money, no music!)

There was one more element to the make-up of Festival, a very important element!  FOOD!!  The Parish Hall was in the school's lower level and that is were the food was prepared and sold.  There were usually Italian beef sandwiches, brats and sauerkraut,  and one or two other main dishes, beverages, and dessert!  The food was sold for multiple purposes....raising more money, encouraging people to stay longer, and to help offset the occasional problem that goes along with selling alcoholic beverages!  Even after all the shows were finished for the night, the last of the party animals stayed until the Hall was finally shut down around 2 or 3 in the morning!  A lot of that late night crowd was made up of the performers and and others who had spent the night entertaining all the people who came through.  It was sort of the party after the party!

Festival was a major factor in my life, and because of Festival I met and sang with lots and lots of very talented people.  Most precious and important to me were the two women who joined with me to form a trio (which we called a variety of names over the years).  We sang together for over ten years not only at Festival but at other events as well.  Singing with them was one of the best gifts in my life. They are among the treasured few great friends I still have.  They are still in Chicago, but we are getting together in April for a few days.  I can hardly wait!  But I digress....

I was part of Festival for almost 10 years, until the parish pastor was transferred and a new pastor brought in.  For whatever reason, (I never knew fully what they were)  the new pastor didn't like the concept so, he wouldn't allow it to go on.  It was heartbreaking to all of us who had spent so much time and effort and enjoyed it so fully.  I know though, that things run their course and Festival had a good long run of years and brought a lot of parishioners together in a common activity, perhaps it was time for it to go.  The last year for Festival was 1990 or 91 (can't remember for sure).

I have no idea if any of the other churches continue to do so.  It is a huge undertaking and requires an enormous amount of effort to do year after year, but Oh, it was Grand!  Most everybody who came or participated LOVED it.  I miss it to this day! 
Oops, just one more little detail I forgot to mention that you might find interesting, the money raised!  The money rose each year and in the peak year (1988, I think), the Festival Committee was able to write a check to the parish in the amount of..........(are you ready??)

(wait for it....)

(drum roll, please......)

(what do you guess?........)

$93,000+ !!

Yes, ladies and gentlemen, that is $93,000 good ole U.S. dollars -- NET not Gross!!  After all expenses had been paid.  And the other years  (after the first 2 years) the net amount was NEVER LESS than $79,000.  That kind of helps explain why it went on for so many years!!  It's pretty hard to turn down that kind of money! 

$93,000....Man, that's a lot of cupcakes and crocheted TP covers, ya know!??!

♪♪...."Start by admitting
From cradle to tomb,
It isn't that long a stay.
Life is a Cabaret, Old Chum,
Only a Cabaret, Old Chum,
And I LOVE a Cab-a-ret!"  ♪

Wednesday, March 9, 2011

A Cappella #2

I had every intention of writing more today about "Festival," the topic I began yesterday; however, my computer didn't want to play nice.  In fact, it didn't want to play at all!! 

It just wanted to sit there, doing weird things it had NEVER done before, and slowly driving me mad.  After fussing around with this "darling machine" (I don't want to say anything nasty about it or it will exact it's revenge in ugly and cruel ways!) 

Anyway after arguing futilely with you-know-who since 7:00 this evening (it is now 12:30 a.m.), it decided that it was time for bed or something because suddenly for no apparent reason that I can figure out, it is now behaving like a good computer and actually doing what I tell it to! 

Nevertheless, after 5 1/2 hours of mounting frustration and complete lack of success, I no longer have it in me to take on anymore tonight! 

So I will pack up my stories, get the heck out of Dodge, and try anew tomorrow!  Sorry to disappoint!

To those of you who commented about yesterday's post, I will say that these events were absolutely the most fun ever and had they not come to an end, I never would have left Chicago.

More tomorrow, I hope!

Tuesday, March 8, 2011


As you may (or may not) know, tomorrow (Wednesday) is Ash Wednesday, the beginning of Lent, a time of sacrifice, fasting, and prayer, for many Christian churches, including Roman Catholic churches.  Over the centuries there has been a tradition of a lot of "partying" just before the beginning of Lent, such as Mardis Gras in New Orleans (or Carnivale in Rio).   It's sort of one last fling before the 40 days of abstinence before Easter.

Also as you may (or may not) know, Chicago (my home town) has an enormous Catholic population, because of the large German, Polish, Irish, and Hispanic neighborhoods in the city and its environs.  This has resulted in the Roman Catholic Archdiocese of Chicago being comprised of  (and this is an exact figure) a GAZILLION Catholic Churches, most of which have a Catholic Elementary School attached. 

Lastly, as you may (or may not) know, most churches of any denomination have one thing in common....they are in debt up to their altar rails!  The debt usually is comprised mostly of large mortgages and other loans which funded the building of the churches, church halls, parking lots, and in the case of most Catholic and many Episcopal and Lutheran churches, elementary or high schools.  Although most of the congregational donations are as generous as the parishioners can manage, the money gathered NEVER equals the money needed.  Until those mortgages and loans are finally paid off, by and large churches are always in financial difficulties.

Thus, churches are always looking for ways to raise money....bake sales, Christmas Bazaars, raffles, Bingo, school fairs, and such abound in church communities to give the parishioners a break from sermons from the pulpit continually asking for money.  At least with a Christmas Bazaar you go home with a crocheted TP cover to make up for your empty pockets!

Somewhere in the early 70s, someone at a Catholic church in a NW suburb of Chicago, came up with the most brilliant (and successful) fundraising activity ever conceived. 

As witnessed by any Karaoke Night in any town across the US, there are an enormous number of people who are talented to varying degrees and are more than willing and eager to share their talents with others.  Some are actually on their way to a professional career as an entertainer and others are just wannabees, but there are lots and lots of them.

OK, you with me so far?

Well, what that church decided to do was, in essence, hold Cabaret shows in the schools, with some of the talented parishioners and sell tickets to raise funds.  Please understand it was much more than just a little church talent show.  Oh my yes, MUCH more!  And the idea was copied, modified, and spread to several other Catholic Churches, where it grew and grew and grew!

By the time Mikey and I became involved in our Church's effort it had grown to a parish-wide activity involving more than 800 people (singers, dancers, comedians, musicians, cooks, bartenders, lighting and sound technicians, seamstresses, parking attendants, coat check staff, waitresses, ticket sellers, crowd control, clean up crews, raffle sellers, and more.  To say nothing of the administrative types who had the ultimate responsibility for oversight and problem-solving.   Yep, it was huge!  It took months to put it all together and there were about a dozen different churches that did it every year for 10-15 YEARS!

At this point I'm sure you have no real idea of what I'm talking about, so I will try to explain clearly enough so that you can understand the scope of what I am talking about.

Our parish called its event, "Festival".  There was an overall chairman found each year (some even did it twice!!) who would contact individuals and coerce....uhhm....convince them to become the "chairman" for a "room".  There were usually anywhere from 5 to 8 people willing to volunteer to chair a room.   Each of those room chairs would put together a group of people made up of singers, dancers, comedians, and musicians, to create and present an original "show" with a theme, songs, multiple costumes, a small set, some sort of a story line (usually).  The resultant 5-8 shows were each assigned a classroom where their show would be presented.

The school at our parish had several classrooms with removable dividers to make some rooms into double classrooms for various and sundry events  This made it easy to create several double rooms where a stage was built, a section designated for a band, a minuscule "backstage" for the performers to enter and exit, and the rest of the space was for seating and was filled with about 50-75 folding chairs.  In addition there was a "holding room/bar" in the room next door, where audience could sit prior to a show and have a drink and some nibblies while waiting.

There were 2 weekends (4 nights) of performances and the school kids took their Spring Break during the week between the 2 weekends.  Because school was closed for the week and all of the desks had been put into storage, each room was able to leave their stage and set-up in place for the week until the 2nd weekend.   Each room's show was unique and changed every year.  The shows generally ran 30-40 minutes and were repeated several times a night. 

The purchase of a ticket would allow entry to the building and the audience member to see ALL of the shows depending on how late they were willing to stay!  On performance nights the doors opened at 7:30 and the shows ran as many times as they had an audience!  They usually did anywhere from 4 to 6 shows a night depending the size of the crowd.

It was a great idea and it worked!  I'll tell you more about it tomorrow!!

♪♪....What good is sitting alone in your room?
Come, hear the music play.....♪

Sunday, March 6, 2011

"Mellow Yellow" (#4)


It's time for another Mellow Yellow Monday!

Isn't the yellow rose the most beautiful flower? I have always thought so. In fact, yellow roses, just like those below, are what I carried when I got married. There was a bouquet with a few more than this, but they were this color yellow and there was baby's breath, and some ribbon, and some greenery, and they went with me down the aisle.

Well, at least I think they looked like this, it's a little hard to remember, after all it was a LONG time Saturday it will be 45 years since I carried those pretty yellow roses down the aisle on my way to marry Mikey!!     And for every year since, Mikey has given me pretty yellow roses on our anniversary.  Isn't that just the best?  That's my Big Guy!

Of course, I could just go to verify the color of the roses in my wedding photos.  Oh wait....nope....I can't do that....darn it!   Come back tomorrow and I'll tell you why!  In the meantime, enjoy the lovely yellow roses in honor of Mellow Yellow Monday!

My 4th contribution to Mellow Yellow Monday!  Hope you liked it!  Go to if you want to join the ranks of lovers of all things YELLOW!

♪♪....They call me Mellow Yellow!....♪

~~ Donovan

Friday, March 4, 2011

"Yesterday's Gone"

Every now and then something happens that says to your inside self, "Face it, Yesterday's Gone."  Rarely are we aware of that kind of moment for someone else.  But occasionally....

I ran into a friend a few days ago, not a particularly close friend, but someone I've known for five or six years.  This friend of mine is one of those blessed men who are really good looking. I mean, REALLY good looking!  He's a nice guy too, but, like a lot of guys, he is a born flirt!  I think we all know one at some point in our lives.  He likes women, he enjoys them, and he makes any woman he's talking to feel special.  Now he's not smarmy or creepy or anything, just nice to look at and talk too.  Some guys have the gift, you know?  

He was not only attracted by women, the combination of  looks and charm and personality, made him equally attractive to women!  In a social situation, there were usually two or three women of varying ages paying court to him.  He didn't seem to mind it a bit.  In fact, I'm pretty sure  that was fairly standard throughout his whole life. 

He was married and had two beautiful teenage daughters. A few years ago, after a 17 or 18 year marriage, there was a divorce between him and his wife.  These things happen and my friend moved out to his own place. 

So there he was a single, good-looking guy in a nice house of his own.  After a time he was looking forward to dating again.  Why not?  Nobody likes being alone for long.  He took a lot of ribbing about the "wild and crazy" life he was going to have.  You know, women in and out day and night.  But I never heard any evidence of that kind of thing at all.  He dated a bit and I was kind of surprised that he didn't seem to hook up with anyone permanently.

His daughters were having some difficulty with the divorce and they wanted to move in with Dad.  So one at a time, they did.

I hadn't seen him for several months, but I knew things were not so easy for him right now (we have mutual friends).  He was a victim of the economic downturn and he was laid off from his job of over 12 years.  So when I saw him, we were talking and he told me he hadn't yet found a replacement, money was tight but he had a few irons in the fire, so he was hopeful.  Unfortunately as we talked I realized that his face was drawn and tight, his hair had greyed quite a bit, and although he was still nice looking, his sharp, knock 'em over good looks had begun to fade.  He looked tired.  There were some lines and a couple of wrinkles.  He was beginning to look his age.

He told me his daughters were in college and still living with him. 
As a matter of fact, a couple of their friends moved in too.  Their parents were okay with it, because the girls had grown up together and the families knew each other well, and besides, there was Dad as chaperone-in-residence.   Everybody was happy.

Well, everybody but my friend.  He was laughing when he told me about living in a house with five 18-19 year old girls.  He said it was like living his worst nightmare!  Being surrounded by all these young pretty ladies, and they all thought of him as a dad!   Oh how the mighty have fallen!

I don't know if he realizes it yet but I don't think he'll be getting the same kind of attention from the ladies (shallow as we can be) anymore.  I don't know if he realizes that "Yesterday's Gone" and he has joined the rest of us on that slow downward slope.

It's really kind of sad, you don't often get to meet someone who is movie-star handsome in real life.  Poor guy, I'm afraid he'll have a hard time letting it go. 

Thursday, March 3, 2011


  Just a quick update to last Wednesday's post!  Yesterday the price for regular was $3.34 per gal.   That's up $.35 in 8 days!  It appears that I am not the only one who finds this raise a real struggle!

Tuesday, March 1, 2011

"The Last Farewell" ~~ Frank Buckles, 1901-2011

He didn't seek the spotlight, but when Frank Buckles outlived every other American who'd served in World War I, he became what his biographer called "the humble patriot" and final torchbearer for the memory of that fading conflict.
(AP Photo/Charlie Riedel)

Buckles enlisted in World War I at 16 after lying about his age. He died Sunday on his farm in Charles Town, nearly a month after his 110th birthday. He had devoted the last years of his life to campaigning for greater recognition for his former comrades, prodding politicians to support a national memorial in Washington and working with friend and family spokesman David DeJonge on a biography.

In a May 26, 2008 file photo Frank Buckles receives an American flag during Memorial Day activities at the National World War I Museum in Kansas City, Mo.

The family asked that donations be made to the National World War One Legacy Project. The project is managed by the nonprofit Survivor Quest and will educate students about Buckles and WWI through a documentary and traveling educational exhibition.

"We have lost a living link to an important era in our nation's history," said Secretary of Veterans Affairs Eric Shinseki. "But we have also lost a man of quiet dignity, who dedicated his final years to ensuring the sacrifices of his fellow 'Doughboys' are appropriately commemorated."

May he Rest in Peace.

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