Sunday, March 31, 2013

Saturday, March 30, 2013


OK, I admit, I have sick humor! Many years ago, I heard my first "BOB" joke:

"What do you call a guy with no arms and legs who likes to go swimming? BOB"

Over the years, I have maintained a collection of "BOB" and "BARB" jokes, much to the dismay of family and friends. Just let anyone say, "Hey, remember BOB jokes?" and I'm on a roll. Recently, a friend introduced another generation to BOB jokes and asked me, (dubbing me "the VENERABLE ONE") for my assistance. "Should I or should I not?" I wondered. How could I disappoint a new generation?

What do you call a guy with no arms and legs who water skis? SKIP
is in your mailbox? BILL 
 hangs on your wall? ART 
 is in front of your door? MATT 
 is under a car? JACK 
 rakes leaves? RUSSELL 
 was with wild animals? CLAUDE 
 is covered with cement? ROCK 
 was stoned to death? ROCKY 
 plays golf? CHIP 
 is on stage? MIKE 
 is in a vehicle? OTTO 
 is under a microscope? GENE 
 was struck by lightning? ROD 
 is in your spice rack? HERB or BASIL
 is in a flowerbed? PETE 
 flies over a fence? HOMER
 is in a bank vault? RICH 
 is in a hole? PHIL 
 is on 2 wheels? AXEL
 is in a coffee cup? JOE 
 is in a bank? BUCK 
 is covered with sauerkraut? REUBEN 
 is in a fireplace? BERNIE 
 is in a men's room? JOHN 
 is in a grocery bag? CARY 
 has been in collisions? REX 
 loosens Hex screws? ALLEN 
 is buried 6 feet under? DOUG 
 is buried 3 feet under? DOUGLAS 
 was cooked by cannibals? STU 
 is foaming at the mouth? BUD 
 is at a news desk? JUSTIN 
 is covered with glue? ELMER 
 is on a piece of paper? MARK 
 is covered with oil? DEREK 
 is remembered by the deceased? WILL 
 who does his own shaving? NICK
 is between two buildings? ALI 
 is in the end zone? SPIKE 
 whose head is underwater? DUNCAN 
 is an electrician? SPARKY 
 is under a bed? DUSTY 
 is in a lingerie drawer? TEDDY 
 is in a bathtub? DWAYNE

I can't have BOB jokes without including BARB jokes:

What do you call a woman with no arms and legs caught in a fence? BARB against a wall? EILEEN 
 floating on a pond? LILY 
 in a vase? ROSE 
 who feels worthless? PENNY 
 in a stream? BROOKE 
 holding a coat? PEG 
 on a beach? SANDY 
 with a breaking wind problem? GALE 
 in a frying pan? PAM 
 in a box of chocolates? CANDY 
 hanging from a chandelier? TIFFANY 
 on your dining room table? CRYSTAL 
 between two slices of bread? PATTY

I've saved the self-deprecating one until last:

What do you call a woman with no arms and legs bringing a lawsuit to court? SUE

At least I didn't include HELEN KELLER jokes!

Friday, March 29, 2013


I am old enough to be the mother of several women with whom I frequently come in contact. Two of them must be the two unhealthiest people I have ever met as there is always something wrong with them. Whenever I am with them, they immediately begin to tell about their multitude of health problems. When asked how I am, I say that I'm "well, fantastic, wonderful" or some other splendid adjectives. I guess they've never been told how boring it is to talk about ailments or perhaps they have no other topic for conversation. I now offer no comments about their maladies, vainly hoping that they would get the message. I never ask, "How are you?"

I told another friend (who also has to endure their litany of complaints), "I'm going to tell them that I have POLYMYALGIA RHEUMATICA!" I told her that a woman who takes Water Aerobics class with me has that condition and at least it sounded interesting! The friend said, "I know you would want it to be interesting!" (CLICK HERE to see my BLOG article HASHIMOTO'S SYNDROME)

Yesterday, I said to the friend, "If I hear them open a conversation with: "Oh, I have a migraine" one more time I'm going to scream!"

Do people say it because it sounds very dramatic or that their "pain" is so severe they can't possibly have a simple headache? I know people who suffer from actual migraines but they aren't "out and about". The last time one of them told me she was "having a migraine", she'd already told me about several "errands" she'd done before arriving; I asked, with feigned amazement, "And you're here? I thought migraines made people unable to function."

Les suggested, "I think you should tell them directly that you're not interested or perhaps a simple WAAANNNHH would suffice!"

Thursday, March 28, 2013


MENTAL FLOSS published this article. The list includes laughter, happiness, love, excellent, joy, successful, win, rainbow, smile, won, pleasure and winning.

I love the word synergy.

What are your favorite, happy words?

CLICK HERE to read the MENTAL FLOSS article and the 25 words listed.

Wednesday, March 27, 2013


"My life is ruined", one of the rapists in Steubenville was quoted as saying after his sentencing. My comment: "What about the life of the girl, Buddy?"

Why was this a nationwide scandal? CNN interrupted regular programming to air the verdict. Why are people surprised? With the permissive football culture, underage drinking, and no parental supervision, this could have been predicted.

I understand that the "town" is upset by the judge's sentencing. I am not surprised, but I am sickened.

An older person of my acquaintance--a male--said, "Well, she was drinking a lot." I said, "I don't care if she consumed all of the booze in Ohio, she didn't deserve this!" I asked him, "Do you actually believe that her being drunk was justification?" He answered, "She shouldn't have been there." I answered, "They shouldn't have been there." Being sarcastic, I said, "She probably flirted with them and wore a short skirt." He missed the sarcasm. He answered, "That's what I mean." I said, "I was being sarcastic and giving the time-worn excuses for males to use their POWER; there is NEVER any excuse!"

Tuesday, March 26, 2013



Humans have been making cheese for at least 7,500 years, possibly earlier than the development of the wheel.

Archaeological finds show that cheese may have been made as early as the 7000s BCE, and there is solid evidence that cheese was being made in Poland around 5,500 BCE. This means that it likely far predated the wheel, which appears to have been invented around 4,000 to 3,500 BCE. It's thought that people discovered cheese making by accident after storing milk in a pouch fashioned out of a sheep's, cow's, or goat's stomach that still contained rennet and finding out that it turned into cheese.


How did they have a "wheel" of brie?

Monday, March 25, 2013

26 + 6 = 1

On Saint Patrick's Day I wear ORANGE. Several people have commented about my lack of the "WEARING OF THE GREEN", which gives me the opportunity to tell them that one side of my family came from NORTHERN Ireland and that we are ORANGEMEN! (In a bit of chauvinism, I always choose Syracuse University as my favorite in March Madness because they are the "Orangemen"; just like the devotion of some others to Notre Dame's "The Fighting Irish".)

I beleive in a United Eire! For years I had a bumper sticker on my car reading "26 + 6 = 1" but only one person outside my family "got" its meaning! My brother asked, "When people don't get it, does it diminish your revolutionary fervor?"

A woman of my acquaintence who attends a local Evangelical church said that she was having a St. Patrick's Day party. I asked, "Isn't that against your religion?" She said, "What do you mean?" I didn't even mention the probability that there would be the consumption of alcoholic beverages at such a gathering, but I did comment, "Well, Saint Patrick was obviously CATHOLIC and you are obviously a Protestant." She seemed offended and answered tersely, "I'm not a Protestant, but I'm Irish." I asked, "From which county in Northern Ireland did your family originate?" She said she didn't know. I asked, "But don't you understand that your church, along with all the other sects, stem from the Protestant Reformation?" She seemed stunned. I asked, "Do you know the history of your church? It's an offshoot of another Protestant church." She said she did not know the history of her church and she was surprised that I did. I asked, with some incredulity, "You joined a church without knowing its history?"

On Facebook, on Saint Patrick'sDay, I was amused to see numerous St. Patrick's Day messages and all were from non-Catholics. My brother said, "Everybody's Irish on St. Paddy's Day!" See the message from THE WISE GEEK:

The number of Americans who report having Irish ancestry is seven times larger than the total population of Ireland.

About 11%, or 35 million out of about 310 million, Americans claim Irish ancestry, according to 2011 US Census data. Ireland's total population is about 4.6 million citizens, which means that the US has more than 7 times more people of Irish heritage than Ireland. These numbers were split rather evenly between both men and women and across a fairly wide range of age groups and levels of education. The large number of Irish-Americans may be traced back to the country's wave of Irish immigration experienced in the mid 1800s.

Sunday, March 24, 2013


I was at an AAUW book sale and a woman standing beside me let out a screak, "I gave this very book to my granddaughter!" She showed the book to me and it had this inscription: "To Emily on your fourth birthday. Hugs and kisses from Nanna".

Although I commiserated with her about ungrateful and ungracious children, I thought to myself, "What do you expect, writing sickening sweet hugs and kisses and signing Nana with TWO n's; besides, do you think the kid can read the inscription?"

I can't imagine giving away a book which someone had demonstrated thoughtfulness and had taken the time to select for me. I have often said the reason I wanted our house was because of the honest-to-God room one can call a library! I have run out of room in the library and there are books in every other room in the house, including linen closets and other closets. In addition to all of the book shelves being full and books on the end tables and coffee table, I now have eight rows of stacks of books in the library, setting on the floor stacked up to the edge of the window. Sometimes people have given books to me with the stated purpose: "If you don't want these then take them to Goodwill." I have donated books from those acquisitions, but none which were GIFTS!

Saturday, March 23, 2013


I bought a copy of The Collected Poems by Emily Dickinson at our local Goodwill store with the intention of giving it to a friend of mine. When I got home, Les was looking at it and said, "Did you see the inscription?" I said, "What? No, now I can't give it to her." Les said he thought that my friend would think it hilarious for me to give her a book inscribed to another person. (How he thinks he knows her better than I, I don't know, as he has never met her!) I know that she wouldn't mind that I gave her something used, but, it's just the idea of giving her a present that's used is discomforting to me.

I asked Les, "How could anyone give away a copy of Emily Dickinson's poems?" I had a moral dilemma: should I give the book with the inscription to my friend or should I tear out the page with the inscription on it? That would look tacky! Should I give her my own treasured copy which came from Lazarus (it's a Modern Library edition**) with the $2.45 price sticker still on the book. I bought the book when I was a teenager, with money I'd won as a prize at school. Besides, my volume is very worn and the one from Goodwill looks pristine.

The final drollery: the book is inscribed to "Ginger and Joe". I know a couple named Ginger and Joe. I wondered just how many couples there are named Ginger and Joe. I have resisted calling Ginger to see if she is the Ginger who donated the book to Goodwill! Les said that if I can't resist the temptation to call Ginger then I should handle it gingerly!

**more about the Modern Library at a later date.

Friday, March 22, 2013


On this, the 10th anniversary of the shameful invasion of Iraq, I congratulate the brave 23 U.S. Senators and the 133 members of the House of Representatives who voted against the immoral invasion.

I can vividly recall how my husband and I, along with three of my brothers, were criticized, and our patriotism called into question, because of our opposition to the war.



Of the 133 House members, these six Representatives from Ohio, also voted AGAINST the war:


I have always kept the list handy as a reminder, lest we forget!

Thursday, March 21, 2013


See MY MARCH MADNESS article from 2011 by CLICKING HERE. The first year I participated I correctly chose 48 of the 68 (and I felt rather *briggity as Mother would say). Last year I did not fare as well. This year I have completed my brackets and I am showing SYRACUSE as the final winner. President Obama, my brother, and a friend of mine have chosen INDIANA. I had Syracuse beat Indiana in the SWEET SIXTEEN.

* briggity is a word which I have found is used only in my family; the definition from my mother: it means when one is too big for one's britches.

(See my BRIGGITY article by CLICKING HERE.)

Wednesday, March 20, 2013


PORTMANTEAU WORD: "a blended word formed by merging two sounds or meanings to create another separate word".

I have known about portmanteau words since reading Lewis Carroll's Through The Looking Glass. In fact, Carroll originated the term "portmanteau words" to describe several of his creations; e.g.: chortle (a blend of chuckle and snort); slithy, (a combination from slimy and lithe); and galumph, (a blend of gallop and triumph).

Portmanteau words--a perfect phrase--because the word portmanteau is, in reality, a portmanteau word! The French word "portmanteau" is luggage with TWO compartments! Portmanteau is derived from the French porter (to carry) and manteau (a cloak).

I had never heard the word "chifforobe" before reading To Kill A Mockingbird by Harper Lee, then I read "chiffen robe" from The Ballad Of The Sad Cafe by Carson McCullers, and then "chifferobe" from Wise Blood by Flannery O'Connor. Perhaps it's a coincidence that all of those writers are Southerners and I have only heard people from the South use those words. I learned that "chiffing robe", "chifen robe", "chifferobe", "chiffrobe" and "shifferobe" are other versions of the word and all are portmanteau words! (See the article from Grammarphobia below):

Some of my favorite portmanteau words are:


and of course, this would not be complete without another portmanteau word:

BLOG (blend of web and log).

However, there are two portmanteau words I detest:

cremains and irregardless!

Closeted Lsnguage
Q: I was speaking to my grandmother about getting less-than-desirable presents for Christmas and she said, “We used to put them in the chifen robe.” When I asked about the term, she said it referred to a closet where her mother stored unwanted gifts to be regifted. I’m not sure of the spelling, but I’d appreciate any information you can provide.
A: The term your grandmother used is usually spelled “chifforobe.” It combines two different terms—“chiffonier” and “wardrobe.”

Words like this are called portmanteau words, which we’ve written about before on our blog. They get their name from their resemblance to a portmanteau, a case that has two hinged compartments. The Oxford English Dictionary says “chifforobe” originated in the US and means “a piece of furniture incorporating a wardrobe and a chest of drawers.”

It was first recorded, according to OED citations, in a 1908 Sears, Roebuck & Company catalog that carried this entry: “The chifforobes as illustrated on this page are a modern invention, having been in use only a short time.” The word is sometimes rendered as “chiffing robe,” and your grandma’s version, “chifen robe,” isn’t unusual either.

The OED cites this example from Carson McCullers’s novella The Ballad of the Sad Café (1953): “The room was furnished with a large ‘chiffen robe.’” Like chifforobes, both chiffoniers and wardrobes are free-standings cupboards devoted to storage, much like large dressers but with extras. Now that homes have built-in closets, we see less of words like “chiffonier” and “wardrobe,” which were once common household terms.

The OED defines a “chiffonier” as “a piece of furniture, consisting of a small cupboard with the top made so as to form a sideboard.” The word comes from French, in which chiffonnier or chiffonnière originally meant a “rag-gatherer,” the OED says. (In French, chiffon means rag.) By transference, chiffonnier was later used in French to mean “a piece of furniture with drawers in which women put away their needlework, cuttings of cloth, etc.,” says the OED, quoting the French lexicographer Émile Littré.

The use of “chiffonier” in English, the OED says, was first recorded in 1806 in reference to the furniture. In the 1850s, in conscious imitation of the French, it was also used in English to mean a rag-picker. The word was sometimes spelled “sheffonier,” which the OED says “represents the common pronunciation.” The other half of your grandmother’s word—“wardrobe’’—is much older than “chiffonier” and may date from the 1300s. It comes from the Old French word warderobe, a variant of garderobe, a locked room for safeguarding clothing, armor, and other valuables. When “wardrobe” came into our language during the Middle English period, it originally meant a separate room for storing clothing and armor—similar to a dressing room.

Tuesday, March 19, 2013


I have appreciated The Onion and its satire and I have been a subscriber and read it online. However, the now-famous Tweet from an Onion staffer regarding the nine-year-old Quvenzhane Wallis, the youngest person ever nominated for an Academy Award, is appalling and deserves all the criticism it's received. The Tweet: "Everyone else seems afraid to say it, but that Quvenzhane Wallis is kind of a c*nt, right?" The term is repugnant, disgusting, reprehensible, misogynist, loathsome, and the most egregious fault--it wasn't even funny! Even if it were funny, it would have still been unacceptable.

The Onion has issued an apology and retracted the Tweet, but the damage was already done. SOME things are simply over-the-line!

Kids are off limits! It doesn't matter that the little girl is a "public figure"; she is STILL a child! That staffer should never have referred to a nine-year-old girl's genitalia! I still have great enmity--and no respect--for John McCain because of the disgraceful joke he made at the expense of the THEN 12-year-old Chelsea Clinton. McCain's recent behavior has only reinforced my opinion that the man has no character. When he made that odious joke, I wrote to him and asked how he would like it if Mr. Clinton made remarks like that about his daughters. I received a form letter which did not address his detestable behavior!

I am known to appreciate raunchy humor. Although I do not use any "dirty" words myself and oftentimes cannot re-tell jokes because of it, I still laugh at "edgy" humor. I am opposed to censorship and don't think that I should be able to inflict my beliefs on others or vice versa. Unlike some, I don't think The Onion should shut down.

I detest that "C" word anytime it's used! In the 1990s, a woman at work called for me and the Union Steward to see that that offensive word had been welded into the top of her toolbox. I became so enraged that I started to kick the toolbox. (Thank goodness I was wearing steel-toed shoes.) The Steward was so shocked that he went to get my boss. I was still kicking that damned box when my boss took hold of my arm and said, "STOP! you're overreacting." Seething, I said, through clenched teeth, "Overreacting? I have had to put up with this shit all my life! You get Human Resources over here right NOW!" When the Human Resources representative--a man--arrived, he also did not seem to comprehend why the employee and I were greatly upset. The worker told him, "At least my boss cares!" as she pointed her finger at the three of them: Steward, Manager, and the HR person, and said, "It's obvious none of you care!" The worker and I both knew who had done it, but we could not prove it. However, there is more than one way to get even and get-even she did, although it took a long time (that would be another BLOG article).

In the 1970s, a man who worked for me had been accused of molesting his daughter. I was walking by a group of men when I heard one of them say, "Well, when they're showing their p***y to you, what are you supposed to do?" I was sickened and shocked into disbelief and frozen there in place, thinking how to respond. I shall never forget when another man (and he has my lifelong admiration for his response) answered, "MY daughter DOESN'T have a p***y!" He turned and walked away but it certainly had a great impact on that group of men! I didn't intrude on the conversation because the good man said it all!

Quvenzhane doesn't have a c**t and she doesn't have a p***y! She is a little girl, and at the Academy Awards, she was wearing a sweet, little, blue dress with a shawl, and carrying a puppy purse! How dare that man subject her--and the remainder of her life--to that obscene term!

CLICK HERE to read the story: Oscars 2013: The Onion issues apology to Quvenzhane Wallis
It was the Oscar night tweet heard 'round the world: While 9-year-old lead actress nominee Quvenzhane Wallis was enjoying her first Academy Award celebration, satirical website the Onion was disparaging the "Beasts of the Southern Wild" star with a tweet that generated outrage.

Monday, March 18, 2013


The response to DAISY BUCHANAN has been plentiful (see additions below). I was surprised that I didn't think of PUSHING UP DAISIES, DAISY BATES, and the LBJ AD.

DAISY DOZEY (a woman my brother knows)
DAISY BATES (civil rights activist)
THE DAISIES (a local gardening club)
DAISY (the hypoallergenic cow)
DAISY GEYSER (at Yellowstone Park)
SAVING DAISY (book by Phil Earle)
DAISY-HEAD MAYZIE (book by Dr. Suess)
A DOG NAMED DAISY (WTC rescue dog)
KNOCK-KNOCK JOKE: ( knock Knock who's there? Daisy daisy who? Days he plays, nights he sleeps.)
DAISY (Jamie Oliver's daughter)
DAISY (character in British sitcom "Spaced")
DAISY, Arkansas
DAISY, Georgia
DAISY, Oklahoma
DAISY ORANGUTAN ( on "Orangutan Island")
PRINCESS DAISY (in "Mario" series video games)
DAISY ("Toy Story 3" character)
DAISY, LILY, AND VIOLET ("Pokemon" ladies)
DAISY, THE DIESEL RAILCAR ( from Thomas The Tank Engine)
DAISIES (little Girl Scouts)
DAISY COCKTAIL (contains whiskey, lemon juice, grenadine simple syrup, and seltzer water)
DAISY (song by Mark Jungers)

Sunday, March 17, 2013


I admit that I'm a sucker for the PBS Pledge Week programs and have pledged for several programs. For the past 12 years Daniel O'Donnell has appeared and I've watched each time.

Along with Irish songs, O'Donnell has also done a program of Elvis tunes, a Christmas show, Broadway show tunes, and Rock 'n' Roll songs, but this year he performed gospel songs, ending with the audience giving him a standing ovation all the time while he was singing How Great Thou Art.

Les calls him "the Irish hillbilly" because O'Donnell sings a great number of country and western songs! Just to show off, I said, "Well, he is certainly no John McCormick." Les asked, "You mean the late Speaker of the House?" I said, "No, the late Irish tenor." Les answered, "Definitely before my time." "Well, he was before my time too, but I know who he was, just like Caruso!"

When he sings, O'Donnell doesn't sound "Irish", but when he speaks, his "brogue" (his term), is very pronounced.

Les screamed with delight and said, "He sounds just like MRS. DOUBTFIRE!"

Saturday, March 16, 2013


A Facebook friend posted that she sings the wrong lyrics to "Smells Like Teen Spirit," much to her husband's consternation. I wrote to her that there's an actual word--MONDEGREEN--for that problem; MONDEGREEN means: a word or phrase resulting from mishearing a word or phrase, usually in song lyrics. See the article from A.WORD.A.DAY ( CLICK HERE to see my BLOG article MY BOYFRIEND'S BACK describing my gaffes as well as others'.


noun: A word or phrase resulting from mishearing a word or phrase, especially in song lyrics. For example:
"The girl with colitis goes by" for "The girl with kaleidoscope eyes" in the Beatles song "Lucy in the Sky With Diamonds".

Friday, March 15, 2013



Cats have a low terminal velocity, which is partly why they don't get injured easily from falls.

Cats are more likely to survive, and have fewer injuries, because their inner ears essentially act as gyroscopes. This allows cats to be able to change their positions quickly to get their legs underneath their bodies. Once a cat reaches terminal velocity, or the
maximum speed of its fall, it either flexes its legs or relaxes and spreads its legs horizontally to absorb the impact of the fall. Cats have a low terminal velocity of about 60 miles per hour (about 97 km/h), compared with the average human's terminal velocity of 120 miles per hour (about 193 km/h). They, therefore, don't fall as quickly and are subject to less of an impact and chance of injury.

Thursday, March 14, 2013


I've written before about not having had any childhood illnesses as a child (see WHOOPING COUGH). Lately I have been worried about contracting chicken pox (we called it "chicken pops" when I was a kid).

Yesterday I learned from Barbara Walters that one can be infected with chicken pox from being around a person with SHINGLES! I've known several people who have had shingles and they were in the "suffering phase" of it, which, I assume, is when it's communicable. EGAD! I could have caught chicken pox! I thought one could only get it from one infected with chicken pox!

CLICK HERE to read about chicken pox from the WebMd artcle.

In talking to my friend Lori I learned that there is a vaccine to prevent chicken pox.

Guess where I'm going tomorrow?

Wednesday, March 13, 2013


In reading our friend Larry Chapman's blog about the Legend Of The Red Velvet Cake (CLICK HERE to read the article), I was reminded of a recent event.

I've written before that I learned (after forty-one years of marriage) that Gerald doesn't like lettuce and I now fix salads without lettuce. We had gone to The Pinkerton House for a post-election celebration. The food was plentiful and delicious, the camaraderie delightful, and the enjoyment was heightened by the ambience of the surroundings.

I noticed that Gerald ate the salad with gusto although it contained lettuce. I attributed it to the fact that he has good manners, or he hadn't had lunch! The next day I mentioned, "I noticed you seemed to like Jason's salad and it had lettuce." Gerald said, "It was delicious, you should get the recipe." I gave no more thought to it until I saw Jason and Nathan in a local store and I said, "I hate to ask this favor, but Gerald loved your salad, and I remember that it had cranberries, apples, and pecans, but I'd be willing to pay for the recipe." They both laughed and Nathan said, "It has only seven ingredients" and he began to list the ingredients. I said, "Wait a second, I'll write it down." Nathan finished giving me the list and I said, in a whimpering voice, "You probably don't want to share the house dressing recipe!" Jason laughed and said, "Go to Kroger and get a bottle of Marzetti's Sweet and Sour Dressing and add two tablespoons of balsamic vinegar!"

I told Gerald, "They're not like Neiman Marcus!" as I had heard the story years ago about that store's alleged charging for a cookie recipe.

A woman of my acquaintance brought her "signature dish"--yes, she used that term--to a pot-luck dinner. She didn't even wait for any compliments before stating, "Everybody always wants this recipe, but I can't share it because I was sworn to secrecy by my grandmother." The dish was OK but as Granny would say, "It's nothin' to write home about." I wasn't going to say anything, but when the fool pressed me by asking, "What do you think, isn't it the best you've ever had?" Obviously she was wangling for a compliment, but I answered, truthfully, "I prefer my mother's." She was obviously miffed, as she said, "Oh, everybody thinks THAT way about their own mother's food." I laughed and answered, "Just like YOU; you just said it was handed down to you by your grandmother; my grandmother handed it down to my mother!"

The difference between Jason and Nathan and her is the difference between CLASS and CRASS!

Tuesday, March 12, 2013


I practice COUPON KARMA every time I go to the store and I also look in the carts of other people and if I have extras, I hand coupons to them. I so appreciate the looks of bewilderment and awkward thank-yous!

The act of clipping every coupon and leaving them near the item in the store for others to use. The good Karma is returned when others start practicing Coupon Karma as well.

Gerald: "Sue, why was your shopping trip so long?"

Sue: "Sorry, I had a ton of coupons that I had to leave around the store. Just practicing Coupon Karma."

Gerald: "That's such a waste of time!"

Sue: "Actually, I found a $2 coupon for your razors; you're welcome!"

Monday, March 11, 2013


My Facebook friend Cheryl posted:

"What do you call a fake noodle?" IMPASTA

Of course I had to join in:

"Dear Cheryl, I wish I had a PENNE for every time I've heard that one! I can think of only a FUSILLI puns, but I am hoping for a dozen ORZO more! One CANNOLI hope!"

Cheryl had 22 in her thread but nobody else supplied a pun. I asked Patty and Gretchen for help!

Here are their contributions:

I don't have a FETTUCCINE.

I'll GNOCCHI this over for awhile.

Did you hear about the sick paisano? He PASTA way.

This makes my blood CURD-le.

What do Italians eat on Halloween? Fettucine AL-FRAID-O

Where does spaghetti go to dance? At a MEAT BALL

What do the Irish have after eating Italian bread? GAELIC breath

What did the sassy Italian say? I'll give you a PIZZA my mind.

That looks like that cost a pretty PENNE.

You're making a PESTO yourself!

What do you call a pun sandwich? A PUNINI

What do you call leftover lasagna? PASTA its prime

What does an Italian say to a cheese thief? Leave my PROVOLONE

What do Italian girls call their BFF? PESTO friends

CLICK HERE to see the Food Network page on Homemade Cannoli.

Sunday, March 10, 2013


My friend Patty sent the accompanying video to me. I wrote back to her: "Gerald, Les and I enjoyed this. ROBERT MITCHEM."

Patty wrote back, "Night Of The Hunter, but isn't it spelled Mitchum? Zing. I hope I'm right. Why do we care?"

I wrote back to her:

UM, yes, it is Mitchum! (I have a guy in my Precinct named Mitchem and we've actually discussed UM/EM!)

WHY do we care? I always remember my mistakes and always expect that people will also remember them. However, I find that the opposite is true; people always remember their own mistakes; e.g.: recently, I was with a former classmate and she asked, "Remember in Mr. Kelley's class when we played College Bowl?" [OMG! Remember College Bowl with Allen Ludden? Mr. Kelley would have us line up as in a Spelling Bee and the last one surviving was the winner.] She continued, "I'll never forget--you won because you knew what the word CONTEMPORANEOUS meant--and I didn't." I had forgotten that "triumph" but she hadn't forgotten after all these years! My former classmate holds a PhD and was/is much smarter than I. However, Mr. Kelley's class was HISTORY and he'd mentioned that someone in history was contemporaneous with another historical figure. He'd told in class the meaning of the word.

But, more importantly, Patty, don't you remember that YOU corrected me about the Mitchum song? We were talking about the movie and I said the song LOVE/HATE Mitchum was singing was Bringing In The Sheaves but it was Leaning On The Everlasting Arms!

CLICK HERE and Enjoy the video!

Saturday, March 9, 2013


Along with millions of English, Scottish, Welsh, Irish, Australian, Canadian, and American devotees, I am hooked on Downton Abbey.  Season 3 recently ended and I feel comfortable in stating that we ALL are waiting with great anticipation for the next season.

Dammit, nobody in my house will watch the series with me.  It's not Gerald's "thing" and Les said, dismissively, "No matter how high-brow it is, it is still a soap opera!"  None of my friends with whom I chat are aficionados.

Where, oh, where, shall I go for succor, sharing, and camaraderie?  To Facebook, of course.  Yes, thank you, my dear Facebook friends, with whom I can share my sorrow of losing Lady Sybil and Matthew and have conversations about what awaits us in Season 4!


Who will be Lady Mary's next love interest?  Will Lady Mary assume Matthew's role and manage the estate or will Branson be the savior despite being an Irish revolutionary?  What will become of Matthew's mother Isobel?  Will she marry Dr. Clarkson?   Will Bates and Anna have a baby? What's the mystery with Jimmy?  What about Barrow and poor ole Moseley? Will Edith cause more scandal with the married publisher than the hushed-up Lady Mary/Turkish Ambassador escapade?  How will Cousin Rose disrupt the family? How about that mysterious would-be interloper "cousin";  will he return since Matthew's death?  Will Carson and Mrs. Hughes ever get together?  Will Mrs. Patmore kill Daisy over some creme brulee?

There is only one thing for certain:  Julian Fellowes said he will NOT kill off Violet, the Dowager Countess of Grantham,  played by the ultimate grand dame, Dame Maggie Smith.

Friday, March 8, 2013


My brother says he can't stand people who give names to  inanimate objects.  Of course, I give names to lots of objects such as my cars, laptop, and thermometer.

A friend gave me a fascinating flower (see picture) and the flower waves back and forth, obviously powered by the sun.  It gives joy to Gerald, Les and me.  It's a daisy and I immediately called her DAISY BUCHANAN, after the F. Scott Fitzgerald ideal woman character in The Great Gatsby.  Naturally (but only "naturally" at my house!), that started a new "refrigerator game" (see BLOG article and picture HERE)  I asked Patty and Gretchen for additions to the ones from Gerald, Les, and me.

Here's the list so far:

DAISY MILLER (Henry James' novella)
DAISY SHILTZ (works at my bank)
INSIDE DAISY CLOVER (Natalie Wood movie)
DAISY (brand of sour cream)
SHe DAISY (country and western group)
MARGARET (Daisy is the Crown Princess of Sweden's nickname)
"DO A DOLLOP, DO A DOLLOP OF DAISY" (from Cookie Monster)
HYACINTH'S SISTER (on British sitcom "Keeping Up Appearances")
DAISY LOWE (English model)
DAISY WICK (character on "Bones")
DAISY (character in "RAMONA FOREVER")
"HER MOMMA NAMED HER DAISY, GOT IT FROM A MAGAZINE" (country and western song)
PLEASE DON'T EAT THE DAISIES (Jean Kerr book/Doris Day movie)
PRINCESS DAISY (Judith Krantz book)

Thursday, March 7, 2013


This morning, after answering some e-mails about my BLOG article from yesterday, (which was about receiving and repeating erroneous information about a friend's reported death), I went to the Fitness Center for my Water Aerobics class.

One of the class members asked, "Did you hear Mary Tyler Moore has inoperable brain cancer?"

Of course, everyone--EXCEPT MYSELF--believed it--and why not? After yesterday's shock, I don't believe ANYTHING I hear! I have always been a skeptical person.

Just now, as I was answering e-mails and comments about the article, I see a pop-up from People Daily:

"VALERIE HARPER diagnosed with terminal brain cancer."

What are the chances of it being both Mary and Valerie? Fat or slim?

Wednesday, March 6, 2013


I have written previously about the kind of people who have the compulsion to be "THE FIRST TO TELL" (see BLOG article HERE), especially about delivering bad news.

In my heart I know that I am not THAT kind of person, because I abhor that kind of behavior, but today I became a part of it.

A friend called and told me that a friend of ours had died this morning. I was overcome by the shock and never once thinking that it might NOT be true, I, in turn, I called three other people (thankfully, it was only three!). The three friends I called cared a great deal about our mutual friend and were as equally devastated as I.

Just now, I called those three people to tell them of my mistake. Here is what actually happened: our friend was from New Holland and a woman who died this morning was from New Holland; the maiden name of the woman who died was the same as the married surname of our friend. That was the ONLY connection! Their other names were totally different. I know that my friend who called me "with the news" is also bereft.

Our friend had battled cancer and I knew it was in remission. I had spent an enjoyable time with her at our President's Day Dinner on February 17. She looked great and had brought items for the auction. I remember I asked her, "Are you in love with...?", and I mentioned our speaker. She gleefully agreed with me. After the dinner we had hugged and I remember saying how good she looked and that I would be calling her.

Oh, please, by all that is good in the world, save me from people who have to be the FIRST TO TELL and be sure that I am never guilty of that sin!

Tuesday, March 5, 2013



Based on the way it's pronounced, the word "scissors" could theoretically be spelled 80 million different ways.

The English language doesn't use phonetic spelling, at least partially because there would be so many different possible ways to spell words that it would make it hard for people to understand each other. There are so many different possible ways to spell English words largely because English uses a lot of words from very different sources; from Germanic to Latin to Greek.

For instance, based purely on the way it sounds, the word "scissors" could theoretically be spelled about 80 million different ways, including "sizerz" "schiesourrhce" and "cisers." This is only theoretical though, because to reach all 80 million possibilities a person would have to use letters in incorrect ways, like using the "z" at the end of a word to make an "s" sound.

Sunday, March 3, 2013


I attended a lecture last night where a local cardiologist was presenting a program entitled PREVENTING HEART ATTACKS. Because of Gerald's past history, I was interested to learn any relevant information.

The doctor had a Power Point presentation and he was holding a microphone around his chest area. I was in the last row and could not hear him. I said, "Please speak up."

His first screen showed: "SEPARATE THE WHEAT FROM THE CHAFE".

I couldn't help myself; I giggled and jotted it down. A person--a stranger--sitting beside me, asked, "What's that mean?" I said, "It should be CHAFF!"

Later, on a screen instructing preventive measures it showed, "LOOSE WEIGHT, instead of "LOSE". I giggled and jotted it down.

During his presentation the doctor mentioned about "TV doctors selling products like Garlique". I heard a male voice behind me laugh and say, "That's Doctor Oz." I turned around in my seat and I recognized the speaker as a local doctor. I said, "You're VERY wrong; Dr. Oz does NOT sell any products; perhaps you should watch him!" He gave me a withering look and I said, "He only sells books and they are all best-sellers!"

After the presentation, some people in the audience applauded and the emcee said, "Let's give him another round of applause." Of course I did not applaud either time. Standing on the edge of my row was a member of the Hospital Board of Trustees and I spoke to him and his wife as they are members of another organization to which I am also a member. He said, "I notice you didn't applaud." I answered, "No, I think he's just an ambulance chaser." The Board Member was obviously taken aback as he asked, "What do you mean by that?" I answered, "He was trying to recruit new patients and he did a POOR job!" He said, huffily, "I disagree with THAT!" I said, "But you have a conflict of interest as he's associated with the hospital and I'm objective!" For some reason, they moved away!

The doctor was soon surrounded by some very important-looking fellows and a doctor I recognized. I went to the doctor's PA and I asked, "Did the doctor prepare his presentation?" She said that he had written it and she had prepared it. I asked, "Then you didn't know it should be CHAFF instead of CHAFE?" She said that she had prepared what he'd written. I said, "He seems rather busy over there; will you give this note to the doctor?" She looked at it and said, "I don't understand." I said, "Oh, let me clarify." I printed, "If using a cliche, make sure it's not an eggcorn!" Then I printed, in block letters, "WHEAT FROM THE CHAFF; see Matthew 3:13!" and I also printed: "LOSE WEIGHT". I said to the PA, "I'm available if he needs a proofreader." She looked at the note and said, "You didn't put your name down." I said, "That's because I was kidding!"

I saw a former classmate who is a retired teacher and she was standing with a former school administrator who holds a PhD. I asked, "What did you think about the wheat from the chafe"? The former classmate laughed and asked, "Oh, yes and how about loose and lose." The former school administrator said, "I didn't notice and I'm an English major." I stood at attention, saluted, and said, "It would have been great if you had majored in English." She looked at me strangely and said, "I did." I saluted again and said, "No, you said you were an English major!" My former classmate said, "I must introduce you to Phyllis Sue Shirkey-Raypole who knows everything!"

I SHOULD have said, but I didn't: "I only correct MDs and PhDs who should know better!"


noun: An erroneous alteration of a word or phrase, by replacing an original word with a similar sounding word, such that the new word or phrase also makes a kind of sense.
For example: "ex-patriot" instead of "expatriate" and "mating name" instead of "maiden name".

Saturday, March 2, 2013


THEY'RE BACK! The buzzards are back! See my BLOG article HERE.

Today, February 25, a Facebook friend mentioned that he'd seen a number of buzzards at Chrisman Park and commented that this was the earliest he'd seen them be here. I told him I thought it's because of global warming!

We moved to our home in 1984, and in March of the next year, we noticed approximately 30 buzzards roosted in the large trees on the east side of our property. Every year since then, we have welcomed the buzzards and their strange beauty. We assume they rest with us prior to going to Hinkley, Ohio.


Friday, March 1, 2013


After a potluck event recently, a friend was offering leftover macaroni and cheese for others to take home. I didn't take any home with me. Later, another friend asked me, "Why is that macaroni and cheese so hard when it's warmed up?" I answered, "She bakes it too long and she probably doesn't make a white sauce and then melt the cheeses in the white sauce." She asked, "Did you say cheeses?" I said, "Yes, but I shouldn't have assumed she used more than one cheese."

In relating the incident to Les, I said, in a hoity-toity voice, "After all, I AM a connoisseur of macaroni and cheese and mashed potatoes."

Les said, "There's something intrinsically wrong about using the word connoisseur along with mashed potatoes."

I answered, "And there's something INTRINSICALLY wrong with your using the word intrinsically when there's no damned audience!"