Monday, May 26, 2014

10 Laws in 10 States

I really enjoy Bill Engvall's comedy.  He's the guy that came up with the "Here's your sign" bits of comedic wisdom.  States are like his musings.  The laws (like his signs) came about because of perceived problems with the behavior of the citizenry.  Or Mother Nature.  A little research came up with the following:

Alabama        -  One may not have an ice cream cone in the back pocket at any time.
Alaska           -  A person may not carry a concealed slingshot if that person has not
                         received the appropriate license.
Arizona         -  Donkeys cannot sleep in bathtubs.
Arkansas       -  The Arkansas River can rise no higher than the Main Street Bridge in
                         Little Rock.
California      - It is illegal to eat oranges in the bathtub.
Colorado       -  In Denver it is illegal to loan your vacuum cleaner to your neighbor.
Connecticut  -  In order for a pickle to be officially a pickle, it must bounce.
Delaware      -  It is illegal for anyone to fly over any body of water unless one is
                         carrying sufficient supplies of food and water.
Florida         -  If an elephant is left tied to a parking meter the parking fee has to be
                         paid just as if it would for a vehicle.
Georgia        -  Donkeys may not be kept in the bathtub.  This is a stricter law than
                        the one written in Arizona.  And this state is more lenient than Alabama
                        in that in Georgia you may not have ice cream in your back pocket on

What strange creatures we humans be.  Sometimes you just have to scratch your head and wonder, "What was going on that it seemed reasonable to come up with these laws?"  We may never know, and some of these may at some point be removed from the books.  But somehow, it seems it is easier to just leave them alone and keep on making new ones as we progress through life.

Thursday, May 22, 2014

Springtime Living

May has arrived a little more slowly than normal this year, but it does indeed appear to now be fully in its element.  Which triggers thoughts of outdoor life in Arkansas this time of year.  With your indulgence I herewith present a little ditty to express my feelings about some of our life forms.

                             OUTDOOR CRITTERS

     Outdoor critters have habits I despise and detest
     No matter how cute each is like all the rest.
     Without a please or thank you, apology or thought,
     They treat me as if I'm a meal they have bought.

          And it makes me wonder as I walk in the fields
          Do they ever get anything, besides me, in a meal?
          Do they also dine on crackers and tea
          While making a meal on poor little me?

     Or am I preferred plain without sauce or spice?
     Perhaps by myself I am twice as nice.
     Well, I can only say without thought or question,
     I help they all suffer acute indigestion.

(Enjoy your time outdoors, but watch where you're walking.)

Monday, May 19, 2014

Small Is In The Eye Of The Beholder

There are times I amuse myself by browsing through some articles on quirky homes.  I like to see the unusual things people come up. 

A lot of the small homes are tiny.  Those don't really appeal to me.  The bed may be a loft over the kitchen area.  That may have worked when I was young and agile, but right now my knees would raise a real stink if I attempted to make a regular trek up a ladder.

It would also be uncomfortable if a midnight run was required to visit the "facilities," which are often not noted in some of the pictures.  So where do you go when you need to go?  I wouldn't like a midnight run outside when nature comes calling my name.

Okay, so I'm a bit wimpy.  So be it.  But where do you put the card table when you want to work a nice 1,000 piece jigsaw puzzle (or larger)?  That's something I really enjoy when the weather outside gets more than frightful.

You certainly would have no place to accommodate visiting relatives.  Now, I know there are times that's a good thing.  But I do have some that brighten my day when I see them.  I want them to feel welcome, no doubt about it, but sitting in one another's laps may be a tad too much.

No, I'm not a McMansion candidate.  I certainly don't need 3,000 square feet to make my nest.  But I do want more than a 64 or 80 square foot home.

What about you?  Are you a "tiny to the max" kind of person, or one who wants quantity to the max?  Or perhaps, like me, somewhere closer to the middle?  I'd like to know.

Thursday, May 15, 2014

Exercise That Mouth!

Today's modern civilization seems to be consumed with the necessity of exercise.  You may think this is something new as we have found ways to spend our days with a minimum of movement, thanks to the advent of television and computers.  So we are encouraged to find exercise programs to make ourselves healthier and to stave off poor health.

This is not something new.  By the late 1800's  there were many folks looking for ways to achieve a healthier way to live.  New inventions came about in an effort to help us reach our goals.  Charles G. Purdy of Brooklyn, New York, was one such thinker.

In 1923 Purdy was issued a U.S. patent #1,466,559 for his Exercise Device.  He was concerned that the modern lifestyle led to a way of cooking that produced food that required little mastication resulting in tooth decay and underdeveloped jaws, all caused by a lack of proper exercise. 

His device consisted of a plate that fit in the mouth with a spring that could be attached to the wall.  The person would then turn his head in a series of movements that would create tension and stress in the mouth, exercising all oral organs and the head.  His contention was that this would result in stronger and healthier teeth, gums, and jaws.

Another way to try the object was using one with a spring between two plates.  This was to be used by two people pulling the spring between them, creating a "tug of war" action.  Now that's a Valentine's Day gift for a romantic couple if I ever heard of one, wouldn't you say.  "Hi, honey.  Let's exercise together."  One question, would you do this before or after eating dinner?

I could find no information as to the public reaction to his invention.  Did it ever go on the market?  I don't know.  Frankly, I would think there could be so much stress and tension on the teeth and gums that you would make them weaker and looser.  It could also be a downer if your lovely gift wound up pulling your darling's dentures out of the mouth.  Especially if you didn't know about the recipient wearing dentures.

Oh, well.  It must have seemed like a good idea at the time.  I wonder if Charles ever came up with another idea for an invention.

Monday, May 12, 2014

Sister No. 1

The family journal continues.  This sister is just a couple years younger than I am, and it's been fun being her sister.  Although I must admit, sometimes it gets exhausting just thinking of all she does.

She is the one with the most nervous energy.  This gal is constantly on the move.  You don't find her just sitting around watching t.v. or couch surfing.

All the family has always been willing to tackle different projects, but she carries it to the next level.  She has refinished furniture.  I'm talking bedroom furniture, dining table, chairs.  She and the youngest sister took an upholstery class and she has certainly put the information to good use.  She and her husband have tackled many a home make-over project and seen each to completion.

Arts and crafts haven't been overlooked either.  She did ceramics at one point, and even had her own kiln.  The beautiful quilts gracing her beds could very well have been made by her, for she has tackled that many times.  She's taken garage sale items and turned them into beautiful things to add beauty and style to her home.

And, as I said, she does not like to sit still.  She walks everywhere.  She has a recumbent bicycle she uses almost daily.  And the punching bag gets a regular workout.  She and her husband like to travel and do RV camping and geocaching.  It's hard to keep up with this active couple.

I'm glad you're my sister, Nolene.

Thursday, May 8, 2014

Attitude of Gratitude

There are times in my life when I find it very helpful to list the things that have gone right, the take time to thank God for getting me through a difficult period, and to focus on the positive.  Today I looked back at one such list.  Some thoughts are fleeting, some are revisited periodically, and some I have moved past.  I thought I'd list just a few.


 1.     Falling stars in the night sky.
 2.     Memories of roller skating when I was a kid.
 3.     Every time something makes me laugh.
 4.     Sitting on the swing under the magnolia tree.
 5.     A phone call from a friend.
 6.     Getting to try something new to me.
 7.     The aroma of a hot cup of coffee.
 8.     The smell of the earth after a good rain.
 9.     The ability to get a good daily newspaper.
10.     The Lord's Prayer.

Just reviewing this list makes me feel better.  Maybe I should do this continue the exercise in my daily life.

Do you journal?  Do you keep a Gratitude Journal?  I hope it gives you pleasure and peace.

Monday, May 5, 2014

The Proper Lady

Fire has always been a hazard for people everywhere.  But when you live in a multistory building it can be especially difficult to escape the flames.  This was the situation in London, England in the 1890s.  They decided to make use of an escape chute.

An early fire department escape chute was fabric attached to a ladder and the person being rescued was put in the chute for a quick descent down to the street.  At first the users had a problem.  If going down the chute head first they just might end up hitting the head on the pavement, resulting in concussion.  Solution?  Use a canvas sheet suspended at the bottom to help exit with the head a bit elevated so it didn't wind up with a large pain.

It didn't take long for the firemen to learn to control their descent by pushing arms and legs against the fabric to help slow their progress as they sped to safety.  A man could go into the chute either head or feet first with the fireman behind hanging on to the victim's arms or legs.

However, it was not quite so easy with a lady.  She would be put in the chute head first.  The fireman would go in behind her, holding her skirt tightly around her ankles so her legs would not be exposed when she exited from the chute.

Now I'm all for a little public decency.  In fact, there are times in today's world when a little bit more of it might be a major force in achieving a more civil society.  But I must admit, in case of a fire, decency would not be my first thought.  I'd be yelling and screaming, "Get me out of here."  The last thing on my mind would be the exposure of my ankles.

But then, I didn't live in the 1890's.  And to that, I can only say, "Thank you, God."

Thursday, May 1, 2014

Too Busy To Notice

Have you ever been so busy you can hardly keep your head above water?  You go through the day with your mind fixed firmly on what needs to be done next, where you need to be, what has to go to the top of the list.  Oh, yeah.  We've all been there.

There was a time my job required a lot of driving, which I thoroughly enjoyed.  I did speech therapy in several rural/small town nursing homes.  The drive between locations helped clear my mind and put me in focus for the next client.

But all the travel meant longer days at times and that meant less time to plan for the necessities of life.  One of those necessities was getting my hair cut.  I've always preferred shorter cuts for myself.  But sometimes the cut would get a bit long and shaggy and when the realization hit I wanted it done now while I was thinking about it.

Driving down Geyer Springs Road one day I saw a shop in a mall with the welcome sign:  We take walk-ins.  It was fate.  They had a break in customers and I needed it done now so I could get back on the road and head out of town.  I popped in, got the cut, and off I went, pleased with the outcome and with the personality of the barber.

I went back several times before I really read the name of the shop:  Barber and Gun Shop.  Yep.  That's what it was.  He sold guns out of the back of the shop.  It must have been legal since he had the sign printed right up there on the shop for all the world to see.  And yes, he did sell a few guns while I was sitting in the chair.  And it tickled my fancy to make use of an unusual business.

When he moved he closed the gun shop, but he was still the entrepreneur.  Now he bought and sold used motorcycles.  So I saw a few bikers come and go in the new shop location from time to time.  He still did a good job with the cuts and I was always happy with his work.

I don't know if he's still in business or not.  We left the area many years ago and I had to find a new place to get my hair cuts.  I do like where I go now, but it seems a little tame at times.

What about your?  Have you even used an unusual enterprise that gave good service but perhaps had a quirky side to the business?  I'd sure like to know.