Wednesday, May 30, 2007
Under extreme stress, some octopuses will eat their own arms.
Black bears are not always black. They can be brown, cinnamon, yellow, and sometimes white.
'Jedi' is an official religion, with over 70,000 followers, in Australia.
If a surgeon in Ancient Egypt lost a patient while performing an operation, his hands were cut off.
The fingerprints of koala bears are virtually indistinguishable from those of humans, so much so that they could be confused at a crime scene.
People with blue eyes are better able to see in the dark.
An egg will float if placed in water in which sugar has been added.
A ball of glass will bounce higher than a ball made of rubber.
Men laugh longer, louder, and more often than women.
Unlike dogs, pigs, and some other mammals, humans cannot taste water. They taste only the chemicals and impurities in the water.
Tuesday, May 29, 2007
I found this beautiful meditation on Antonia's blog. Thanks for sharing!
by Cardinal John Henry Newman
You have committed some work to me which you have not committed to
I have my mission – I may never know it in this life, but I shall be told in the next.
Somehow I am necessary for your purposes.
I have a part in the great work; I am a link in a chain, a bond of connection between persons.
He has not created me for nothing.
I shall do good, I shall do his work; I shall be an angel of peace,
A preacher of truth in my own place.
Fulfill your high purposes in me, I am here to serve you, to be yours.
Friday, May 18, 2007
Never in my entire life have I ever been so scared of a child. On Wednesday morning of last week, Alpha company along with the MP unit from Fort Meyer went to the Washington monument to rehearse for Twilight Tattoo. As I was riding on the bus, the sergeant rose, turned to us, and told us what was going to happen that morning.
" Hey guys, listen up. for those of us that have done this for a couple years, you know whats going on, for the rest of you, pay attention. Make a wish foundation has granted this kid's wish to be president for the day. If he walks up to you, be sure to call him 'Mr President'."
" Oh, and I swear to God, if you jack around out there with him, I will SMOKE THE...."
You get the idea.
We arrived shortly there after and began to practice. We did a few run throughs, and then I heard it. Sirens that where once in the distance grew louder and louder as the presidential motorcade closed in. my heart started to pound as the sergeant called us to attention. I didn't know what to expect. They didn't say how old he was, what he looked like, or who would be there. The doors to the black hummer opened up, and the secret service took there positions. the president was in view.....
Out popped this 8 year old boy, who was barely tall enough to see over the bodyguard's knees. He had a little red tie on, which stood out that much more in his black "presidential tuxedo", and next to him was the vise president, dressed the same attire. he was escorted to the viewing area, and was lifted onto the luxury leather seat. i wanted to laugh at how awkward he was positioned. His legs hardly went over the edge of the chair.
It was at that point we started the show.
I was in a long line of Old guard soldiers, all of us carrying one of the 56 flags representing 50 states and the 6 US territories. I will spare you the details, but basically our job was to dip the flags in front of the president. as I was about to pass in front of him, i was filled with panic, fear, and sorrow all at once. " What if i screw up!? This kid is going to die, and all i do is ruin his one chance to be president!"
The point came, and i executed my job perfectly. I went back to my marker, and waited for the ceremony to end. Something happened that i didn't expect. Instead of leaving, the president and his posse disappeared out of my sight. Time goes by, and I start to see what's going on.
Before I know it, the president is standing.. right... in front... of me. I didn't know what to say, what to do. I salute him, and he sticks out his little hand. His little hand. Here in front of me is a boy, dying of terminal cancer, president of ALL AMERICA, and all he wants to do is shake my hand and give me a pencil.
Thats all I could do. shake his hand...and take his pencil. Just like that, he was gone on to the next guy, and I'm left with a small reminder of what happened mere seconds ago. I wanted to do so much more. I wanted to take his cancer. I wanted to give him the rest of his life. I wanted to say," thank you, Mr. "President".
I can't take his cancer. I can't give him his life back. I didn't "say thank you".
However, I dipped the flag the best I ever have, could, or will. No other president will get that dip. It's something no other person in the world will ever witness.
I have his pencil. I keep it in my top drawer. I check the make a wish foundation often to see if they posted his story. Whether they do or not, I will always remember Michael Salzinger, President for a Day.
Sunday, May 13, 2007
Answers given by elementary school age children to the following questions:
Why did God make mothers?
- She’s the only one who knows where the scotch tape is.
- Mostly to clean the house.
- To help us out of there when we were getting born.
How did God make mother?
- He used dirt, just like for the rest of us.
- Magic plus super powers and a lot of stirring.
- God made my Mom just the same like he made me. He just used bigger parts.
What ingredients are mothers made of?
- God makes mothers out of clouds and angel hair and everything nice in the world and one dab of mean.
- They had to get their start from men’s bones. Then they mostly use string, I think.
Why did God give you your mother and not some other Mom?
- We’re related.
- God knew she likes me a lot more than other people’s moms like me.
What kind of little girl was your Mom?
- My Mom has always been my Mom and none of that other stuff.
- I don’t know because I wasn’t there, but my guess would be pretty bossy.
- They say she used to be nice.
What did Mom need to know about dad before she married him?
- His last name.
- She had to know his background, like is he a crook? Does he get drunk on beer?
- Does he make at least $800 a year?
- Did he say NO to drugs and YES to chores?
Why did your Mom marry your dad?
- My dad makes the best spaghetti in the world. And my Mom eats a lot.
- She got too old to do anything else with him.
- My grandma says that Mom didn’t have her thinking cap on.
Who’s the boss at your house?
- Mom doesn’t want to be boss, but she has to because dad’s such a goof ball.
- Mom. You can tell by room inspection. She sees the stuff under the bed.
- I guess Mom is, but only because she has a lot more to do than dad.
What’s the difference between moms and dads?
- Moms work at work & work at home, & dads just go to work at work.
- Moms know how to talk to teachers without scaring them.
- Dads are taller & stronger, but moms have all the real power ’cause that’s who you got to ask if you want to sleep over at your friend’s.
- Moms have magic. They make you feel better without medicine.
What does your Mom do in her spare time?
- Mothers don’t do spare time.
- To hear her tell it, she pays bills all day long.
What would it take to make your Mom perfect?
- On the inside she’s already perfect. Outside, I think some kind of plastic surgery.
- Diet. You know, her hair. I’d diet, maybe blue.
If you could change one thing about your Mom, what would it be?
- She has this weird thing about me keeping my room clean. I’d get rid of that.
- I’d make my Mom smarter. Then she would know it was my sister who did it and not me.
- I would like for her to get rid of those invisible eyes on her back.
Mother's Day comes 'round each year,
Celebrating all mothers, so dear.
Here is a little gift for you,
With kisses galore and lots of hugs, too!
Of hope and joy, and laughter, too.
This little wish belongs to you -
Hope you have a grand old day,
Everyone loves you more than they can say!
Right now I can't think of anything for the end of this poem! =/
Saturday, May 12, 2007
If the alphabet began to disappear,
Some words would soon look raggedy and queer
(Like QUIRREL, HIMPANZEE, AND CHOOCHOO-TRAI),
While others would entirely fade away.
And since it is by words that we construe
The world, the world would start to vanish too...
What if there were no letter A?
Cows would eat HY instead of HAY.
What's HY? It's an unheard-of diet,
And cows are happy not to try it.
In the word DUMB the letter B is mute,
But elsewhere its importance is acute.
If it were absent, say, from BAT and BALL,
There'd be no big or little leagues at all.
If there were no such thing as C,
Whole symphonies would be off-key,
And under every nut tree you'd
See HIPMUNKS gathering winter food.
If D did not exist, some creatures might
Wish, like the dodo bird, to fade from sight.
For instance, any self-respecting DUCK
Would rather be extinct than be an UCK.
The lordly ELEPHANT is one whom we
Would have no name for if there were no E,
And how it would offend him were we to
Greet him as "Bud," or "Big Boy," or "Hey, you!"
The ELEPHANT is thick-skinned, but I'll bet
That that's a thing he never would forget.
Hail, letter F! If it were not for you,
Our raincoats would be merely WATERPROO,
And that is such a stupid word, I doubt
That it would help to keep the water out.
If G did not exist, the color GREEN
Would have to vanish from the rural scene.
Would oak trees, then, be blue, and pastures pink?
We would turn green at such a sight, I think.
An H can be too scared to speak, almost.
In gloomy words like GHASTLY, GHOUL, and GHOST,
The sound of H can simply not be heard.
But how it loves to say a cheerful word
Like HEALTH, or HAPPINESS, or HOLIDAY!
Or HALLELUJAH! Or HIP, HIP, HURRAY!
Without the letter I, there'd be
No word for your IDENTITY,
And so you'd find it very tough
To tell yourself from other stuff.
Sometimes, perhaps, you'd think yourself
A jam jar on the pantry shelf.
Sometimes you'd make a ticking sound
And slowly move your hands around.
Sometimes you'd lie down like a rug,
Expecting to be vacuumed. Ugh!
Surely, my friends, you now see why
We need to keep the letter I.
If, all at once, there were no letter J,
A cloud of big blue birds might fly away,
And though they'd been an angry, raucous crew,
I think that I would miss them, wouldn't you?
Is K unnecessary? "Heavens, no!
It's in my name!" exclaims the ESKIMO.
"And if there were no K, my little craft,
The KAYAK, would be scuttled fore and aft."
It would be bitter, if there were no L,
To bid the LEMON or the LOON farewell,
And if the LLAMA, with its two-L name,
Should leave us, it would be a double shame,
But certainly it would be triply sad
If LOLLIPOPS no longer could be had.
M is a letter, but it alternates
As a Roman numeral often found in dates.
If M should vanish, we would lose, my dears,
MINCE PIE, MARSHMALLOWS, and a thousand years.
No N? In such a state of things,
Birds would have WIGS instead of WINGS,
And though a wig might suit the owl,
Who is a staid and judgelike fowl,
Most birds would rather fly than wear
A mat of artificial hair.
What would our proud bald eagle say
If he were offered a toupee?
I think it would be better, then,
For us to keep the letter N.
What if there were no letter O?
You couldn't COME, you couldn't GO,
You couldn't ROVE, you couldn't ROAM,
And yet you couldn't stay at HOME!
Where would you be had heaven not sent you
The letter O to orient you?
How strange that the banana's slippery PEEL,
Without its P, would be a slippery EEL!
It makes you think! However, it is not
Profound enough to think about a lot.
What if the letter Q should be destroyed?
Millions of Us would then be unemployed.
For Q and U belong like tick and tock,
Except, of course, in places like IRAQ.
What if there were no R? Your boat, I fear,
Would have no RUDDER, and so you couldn't steer.
How helplessly you'd drift then, and be borne
Through churning seas, and swept around the Horn!
But happily you couldn't come to grief
On ROCKS, or run aground upon a REEF.
What if the letter S were missing?
COBRAS would have no way of hissing,
And all their kin would have to take
The name of ERPENT or of NAKE.
At breakfast time the useful letter T
Preserves us all from eating SHREDDED WHEA.
Without the letter U you couldn't say,
"I think I'd like to visit URUGUAY,"
And so you'd stay forever in North Platte,
New Paltz, or Scranton, or some place like that.
Were there no V, would geese still fly
In V FORMATION in the sky,
Calling it something else instead,
Like "angle," "wedge," or "arrowhead"?
Perhaps. Or they might take the shape
Of smoke rings or of ticker tape,
Or spell out words like HERE WE GO
Or NUTS TO YOU. You never know.
What if there were no letter W?
The WEREWOLF would no longer trouble you,
And you'd be free of many evils
Like WARTS and WEARINESS and WEEVILS.
But then there'd be (alas!) no sweet
WATERMELONS for you to eat.
The letter X will never disappear:
The more you cross it out, the more it's here.
But if it vanished, treasure maps would not
Have anything with which to mark the spot,
And treasure isles would ring with the despair
Of puzzled pirates digging everywhere.
Lacking the letter Y, I guess
We'd have no way of saying YES,
Or even saying MAYBE, and so
There'd be no answer left but NO.
How horrible! Who wants to live
A life so very negative,
Refusing presents, RASPBERRY ice,
Fudge cake, and everything that's nice?
Because they're always BUZZING, honeybees
Could not be with us if there were no Zs,
And many Zs are needed, furthermore,
When people feel the need to SNOOZE and snore.
Long live the Z, then! Not for any money
Would I give up such things as sleep and honey.
Good heavens! It would be an awful mess
If everything dissolved to nothingness!
Be careful then, my friends, and do not let
Anything happen to the alphabet.
Wednesday, May 09, 2007
- The Mona Lisa has no eyebrows. It was the fashion in Renaissance Florence to shave them off!
should know that tipping at a restaurant is considered an insult! Iceland
Until the nineteenth century, solid blocks of tea were used as money in
The sentence "The quick brown fox jumps over a lazy dog." uses every letter of the alphabet!
A mole can dig a tunnel 300 feet long in just one night!
Ancient Egyptians slept on pillows made of stone!
Hummingbirds can weigh less than a penny!
Until 1796, there was a state in the
United Statescalled . Today it's known as Franklin ! Tennessee
The average person has over 1,460 dreams a year!
Thomas Edison, light bulb inventor, was afraid of the dark!
Here is a cute little poem I found about reading. Enjoy! =]
I met a dragon face to face
The year when I was ten,
I took a trip to outer space,
I braved a pirate’s den,
I wrestled with a wicked troll,
And fought a great white shark,
I trailed a rabbit down a hole
I hunted for a snark.
I traveled in a time machine,
And searched for dinosaurs,
I climbed atop a giant’s head,
I found a pot of gold,
I did all this in books I read
When I was ten years old.
~ Jack Prelutsky