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Posts from ‘January, 2009’

Senior Bumper Snickers

picture of bumper sticker

My wife and I seem to have more and more friends who are considered to be "seniors." There are several places where we are eligible for senior discounts, but there are far more where we aren't yet. Several people have sent me some senior bumper stickers. I don't know if they've actually been spotted or if they would just be good ones.

Senior Bumper Snickers

I'm retired. I was tired yesterday, and I'm tired again today.

I'm in the initial stages of my golden years - SS, CD's, IRA's, AARP...

Never do anything you wouldn't want to explain to the paramedics

Old age comes at a very bad time!

There are three signs of old age. The first is loss of memory. I forgot the other two.

I was always taught to respect my elders. I'm so old, there's no one left to respect.

I'm so old ... I don't buy green bananas

I was at the beauty shop for nearly two hours - that was only for the estimate

Talk fast - I don't have much time!

I'm not old. I'm chronologically gifted.

Just married... for 55 years

I'm so old that when I eat in a restaurant they ask for the money up front.

Old people ROCK

At my age, everything I buy comes with a lifetime guarantee!

According to my best recollection, I don't remember.

Any day above ground is a good one.

Bald and counting on global warming

Nostalgia isn't what it used to be

Consciousness - that annoying time between naps

Grandma's my name, and spoilin's my game

picture of bumper sticker

The idea is to die young as late as possible

I'm having a bad bald day

I'm out of bed and dressed. What more do you want?

Quit worrying about your health. It'll go away.

Anybody seen my teeth?

I must be getting older ... all the names in my address book end with M.D.

At my age flowers scare me!

So far this is the oldest I've ever been.

It ain't the age. It's the mileage.

I'm NOT a Senior Citizen. I'm a recycled teenager.



I can't envision many of those bumper stickers on my car any time soon, though my car could honestly sport several of them.

Please don't tell me I'm delusional, but when I was a child and then as a young man, the people who were the age I am now really seemed to be a lot older than I currently see myself. I'm not talking appearance either – the ones I knew just didn't seem to have many interests and didn't do much. I'm older now than any of my grandparents were when I was born. As a child, I didn't see any of them do the types of activities my wife and I and friends our age enjoy doing. Is it because I'm around young people all the time? Is it because I've had an easier life? Is it just differences of personality and outlook? I simply don't picture myself as old as my grandparents and then later as my mom did when they were in their upper 50s. (Dad died at age 42 - YIKES, was he young!) I identify best with the one toward the bottom of the list - "I'm NOT a Senior Citizen. I'm a recycled teenager."

How about your experience? Those of you who are like my wife and me or who know people in our age bracket (in our upper 50s), do you see things as I described them above?


"Character of steel is forged on the anvil of hardship." - Col. Brad Lapiska

=^..^= =^..^=

Live each day like it's your last. One day you'll get it right!

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Jewish Grammar Rules

picture of oil bottle

Does something ever sound funny to you, and you don't know quite why? Or, if you now live somewhere other than where you grew up, do you ever say things that sound funny to others? My wife and I grew up in northwestern Ohio where the word wash is pronounced "worsh." People there also "redd up" the table after meals and "redd up" the house before guests arrive. When we were in college out of state, we had to eliminate those things from our speech, or be prepared to be teased or to explain what we meant.

In several of my classes today we were talking about the placement of adverbs in French sentences. In English we often put short adverbs before the verb – as in the bold print in the first part of this sentence. My students were having trouble understanding why using English word order in French would sound weird to the French who never put the adverb before the verb. I gave them one of the classic Pennsylvania Dutch examples of funny word order, where prepositional phrase placement in sentences turns "Throw the horse some hay over the fence" into "Throw the horse over the fence some hay"), which illustrates a slightly different effect of altering word order.

Along that vein, I found some rules for Jewish grammar in my files and am posting them, followed by what would make some great Jewish Country-Western Hits.

Jewish Grammar Rules

1. When making statements, phrase them as questions. Instead of telling Ida she looks gorgeous, ask her, "Ida, how stunning do you have to look?"

2. Instead of answering questions definitely, answer with another question. When someone asks how you feel, answer, "How should I feel?"

3. Whenever possible, end questions with "or what?" This allows the other person to interject another question: "Has she grown up, or what?" — "Can you remember when she was just a baby, or what?" (Don't be surprised if someone bursts into "Sunrise, Sunset" at any moment.)

4. Begin questions with "What?" For example: "What, my cooking is not good enough for you?"

5. Drop last word in sentence (which is typically a direct or indirect object): "What, do you want to get killed going alone? Harry will go with." (dropping the "you").

6. Move subject to end of sentences: "Is she getting heavy, that Esther?"

7. Use "that" as a modifier to communicate contempt: "Is Esther still dating that Norman fellow?"

8. Use "lovely" to describe actions taken by someone else that the listener should have done too: "We got a lovely note from the Goldmans for hosting the Seder." (Translation: "What, you didn't eat and drink too, at my Seder? You slob, you didn't send a thank you note!")

In using your newly obtained Jewish grammar remember that just because Jews are asking questions, doesn't mean they're going to wait around for an answer. If you've got something to say, speak up. Interrupt often. It shows that you are interested in the conversation. If you're talking and Jews don't interrupt you, they're bored.

Here's a lovely blend of Jewish and Country-Western phraseology and themes...

Jewish Country-Western Hits

For You I Should Be Singing?!

I Was One of the Chosen People ('Til She Chose Somebody Else)

Stand by Your Mensch

I've Got My Foot On The Glass, Where Are You?

My Rowdy Friend Levi's Comin' Over Tonight

You're the Lox My Bagel's Been Missin'

Mamas Don't Let Their Ungrateful Sons Grow Up to Be Cowboys (When You Could Very Easily Have Taken Over The Family Hardware Business That My Own Father Broke His Back To Start And Your Father Sweated Over For Forty-Five Years Which Apparently Doesn't Mean Anything To You Now That You're Turning Your Back On Such A Gift!)

Eighteen Wheels and a Dozen Latkes

The Second Time She Said Shalom, I Knew She Meant Goodbye

I Balanced Your Books, but You're Breaking My Heart

Four Thousand Years of Sufferin', and I Had to Marry You?!


Have you discovered things that you grew up saying that others don't understand, or what? Or have you heard some interesting regional expressions?


“God doesn't call us to blind faith – He's given us lots of evidence.” - Dr. Drew Conley

=^..^= =^..^=

"Let me tell you the one thing I have against Moses. He took us forty years into the desert in order to bring us to the one place in the Middle East that has no oil!" - Golda Meir

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Yes, HE Can!

I know that some of you had fun with the link I posted Tuesday – the site where you could make iconic posters with the images of your choice. I did one of our grandson Drew:

picture of iconic Drew

Change with him usually involves just diapers.

Several people sent me posters that they had made that I thought were great remakes of the originals. Here's the first original, then the remake:

picture of Obama - Change

picture of change

I guess that's what we'll have left after those vampires up in D.C. get done draining us?

Then here's the other original, followed by its remake:

picture of Obama - Hope

picture of Real Hope

I love that one! This world seems to be pinning its hopes on one man right now, and we need to be praying for that man (1 Timothy 2:1-2) – no one human being can possibly meet all the expectations people have of Obama. But there is One who offers real hope and change you can believe in to all, and has the power to deliver. I gladly hang all my hopes on Him.

How about you?


"The Christian life demands change. We're to look like Christ." - Will Galkin

=^..^= =^..^=

We don't change God's message. His message changes us.

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Yes, You Can!

picture of iconic poster

You too can make a poster like the one above! I got the idea from Bet over at Dappled Things. She gave a link to the site obamicon.me where you can "obamicon" yourself by making a poster like mine above, a knock-off of posters we were regaled with all last year. I do not feel that I can bill myself as HOPE, as one man does, but I want to go on the record as being HOPEFUL. I am hopeful because my hope is in the Lord, having learned long ago (and since then getting frequent refresher lessons) not to place my hope in people.

Have fun with that site!


“True shepherds lead their sheep to still waters and green pastures.” - Dr. John Dreisbach

=^..^= =^..^=

Hope you have a great day ... unless, of course, you have other plans.

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Men, Tools, and Gadgets

picture of inner workings

I think it's safe to make the generalization that we men are naturally drawn to tools and gadgets. We just find them hard to resist. It's something about our "nuts and bolts" kind of mind that has to know how things work and our desire to fix things that don't work or that don't work right.

With that in mind, my wife and I recently gave our son Mark and our son-in-law Jim the same gift for their birthdays (Mark January 17 and Jim January 19) - a Black & Decker Auto Adjusting Wrench (pictured below). It's a really cool tool because with the touch of a button you can adjust the opening. This would be great in some of those tight spots where it's hard to do manually.

picture of wrench

I received several great gifts at Christmas that tap into my male attraction to tools and gadgets. My daughter Nora gave me a gift card for tool purchases at Home Depot. I keep going through the store, trying to decide what to buy.

picture of gift card

And my daughter Megan and son-in-law Jim gave me an electric Sudoku game that has brought me literal hours of enjoyment. I kind of wondered if I would like it since I was so used to being able to jot things down on the paper version. But since I got this game, I have not done one single puzzle in my book! This just may be the great gift idea for that male Valentine of yours! 😀

picture of Sudoku

This past week I decided that a store I have gone to frequently has officially become one of my favorite stores in Greenville – Battery Specialists on Furman Hall Rd. near Cherrydale. Below is a picture of the store since their website lacks a picture.

picture of Battery Specialists

I have a digital watch that I bought at a large chain store whose name begins with a W. The battery was starting to go bad, so I went to W****** this past Saturday to get a new battery. I learned that they are not allowed to change batteries in digital watches any more. When I whined that I had bought the watch there and that they had always changed the battery before, the clerk told me the name of a shop I could go to and get the battery changed for $5.00. I went there, and it looked closed and many of the cases inside were empty. Hmm.... Then I thought of Battery Specialists and went there. The young man changed my battery and charged me a total of $2.64. I am happy to give this store a much-deserved plug. They carry about every battery made – it's amazing! Since many gadgets around our house run on batteries, I will give this shop lots of business!

Since this post is about tools and gadgets, here's a list of definitions for some common and some not-so-common tools.

Tool Definitions

HAMMER: Originally employed as a weapon of war, the hammer nowadays is used as a kind of divining rod to locate expensive parts not far from the object you are trying to hit. Used for smashing one's thumbs, hands, thighs, knees, ankles, and even heads so the man using it can say, "I'm tough!"

NAIL GUN: Used for attaching one's own finger to ceiling joist while perched on top of a step ladder. This embarrassing event allows "the contractor" to take a LONG walk in the woods ALONE (and in pain).

NAIL PULLER: The opposite end of a short Pry Bar, used to extricate oneself from embarrassing situations such as mentioned above, even though it creates more pain.

PRY BAR: A tool used to crumple the metal surrounding that clip or bracket you needed to remove in order to replace a 50 cent part. Also pries into the character of people who have ego battles with hard-to-get-apart things.

MECHANIC'S KNIFE: Used to open and slice through the contents of cardboard cartons delivered to your front door; works particularly well on boxes containing items easily cut by knives - clothing, upholstery, inflatable objects, etc.

ELECTRIC HAND DRILL: Normally used for spinning steel Pop rivets in their holes until you die of old age, but it also works great for drilling roll bar mounting holes in the floor of a sports car, just above the brake line that goes to the rear wheel. Also useful for breaking the heads off the last five screws needed to finish the last board on the new deck at 8:59 on a Saturday evening.

HACKSAW: One of a family of cutting tools built on the Ouija board principle. It transforms human energy into a crooked, unpredictable motion, and the more you attempt to influence its course, the more dismal your future becomes.

VISE-GRIPS: Used to round off bolt heads. If nothing else is available, they can also be used to transfer intense welding heat to the palm of your hand. Also used for breaking wife's wrists and fingers as she holds on to whatever he wants held stable.

PLIERS: Another tool used to round off bolt heads.

OXY-ACETYLENE TORCH: Used almost entirely for setting various flammable objects in your garage on fire. Used for setting brand new master bedroom closet on fire because the back of the brand new AC unit is in its corner and July is around the corner. Also handy for igniting the grease inside a brake drum you're trying to get the bearing race out of.

WHITWORTH SOCKETS: Once used for working on older British cars and motorcycles, they are now used mainly for impersonating that 9/16 or 1/2 socket you've been searching for the last 15 minutes.

DRILL PRESS: A tall, upright machine useful for suddenly snatching flat metal bar stock out of your hands so that it smacks you in the chest or flings your beverage across the room, splattering it against that freshly painted part you were drying.

WIRE WHEEL: Cleans rust off old bolts and then throws them somewhere under the workbench with the speed of light. Also removes fingerprint whorls and hard-earned guitar calluses in about the time it takes you to say, "Ouch...."

HYDRAULIC FLOOR JACK: Used for lowering a motorcycle to the ground after you have installed your new front disk brake setup, trapping the jack handle firmly under the front fender.

EIGHT-FOOT LONG DOUGLAS FIR 2 X 4: Used for levering a motorcycle upward off a hydraulic jack.

TWEEZERS: A tool for removing wood splinters.

CELLPHONE: Tool for calling your neighbor to see if he has another hydraulic floor jack.

SNAP-ON GASKET SCRAPER: Theoretically useful as a sandwich tool for spreading mayonnaise; used mainly for getting dog-doo off your boot.

E-Z OUT BOLT AND STUD EXTRACTOR: A tool that snaps off in bolt holes and is ten times harder than any known drill bit.

TIMING LIGHT: A stroboscopic instrument for illuminating grease buildup.

TWO-TON HYDRAULIC ENGINE HOIST: A handy tool for testing the tensile strength of ground straps and brake lines you may have forgotten to disconnect.

CRAFTSMAN 1/2 x 16-INCH SCREWDRIVER: A large motor mount prying tool that inexplicably has an accurately machined screwdriver tip on the end without the handle.

BATTERY ELECTROLYTE TESTER: A handy tool for transferring sulfuric acid from a car battery to the inside of your toolbox after determining that your battery is dead as a doornail, just as you thought.


TROUBLE LIGHT: The mechanic's own tanning booth. Sometimes called a drop light, it is a good source of vitamin D, "the sunshine vitamin," which is not otherwise found under cars at night. Health benefits aside, its main purpose is to consume 40 watt light bulbs at about the same rate that 105 mm howitzer shells might be used during, say, the first few hours of the Battle of the Bulge. More often dark than light, its name is somewhat misleading. Often used to indicate to women of the house that it is time to find something else to do (maybe in another county). Oh yes, don't forget to take young children in the rush out the door!

PHILLIPS SCREWDRIVER: Is ALWAYS the OTHER kind. Normally used to stab the lids of old-style, paper and tin oil cans and splash oil on your shirt; can also be used, as the name implies, to round off Phillips screw heads.

AIR COMPRESSOR: A machine that takes energy produced in a coal-burning power plant 200 miles away and transforms it into compressed air that travels by hose to a Chicago Pneumatic impact wrench that grips rusty bolts last tightened 60 years ago by someone in Springfield, and rounds them off.

HOSE CUTTER: A tool used to cut hoses 1/2 inch too short.

FIST: Used by overtired, thus easily frustrated man to make hole in drywall before installing.


How about your household – do you have any favorite tools or gadgets?

By the way, I'm highly recommending an Internet tool that some of you need to try out - the Firefox web browser. There's a link in my sidebar for downloading it. (36% of my readers are already using it.) I've been a little frustrated that Internet Explorer reformats some of my blog posts, putting things where they aren't supposed to be. Firefox keeps everything just as I post it, every time.

Also, the very next comment made to my blog will be comment number 1,500! Who will it be?


"Your plans cannot thwart God's plans." - Dr. Chris Barney

=^..^= =^..^=

Don't force it! Get a larger hammer!

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