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Vive la Différence!


For today's instant vacation I'd like to highlight some of the delightful differences between women and men. I thought if some of you are working on Valentine's Day programs, I should send some stuff early. After all, February begins already next week!

I certainly don't agree with everything said below, but then, I didn't write it.

Some comparisons of men and women...

NICKNAMES
If Laura, Suzanne, Debra and Rose go out for lunch, they will call each other Laura, Suzanne, Debra and Rose.

But if Mike, Charlie, Bob and John go out, they will affectionately refer to each other as Fat Boy, Godzilla, Peanut-Head, and Useless.

DINING OUT
When the bill arrives, Mike, Charlie, Bob, and John will each throw in $20, even though it's only for $22. 50. None of them will have anything smaller, and none will actually admit they want change back.

When the girls get their bill, out come the pocket calculators.

MONEY
A man will pay $2 for a $1 item he wants.

A woman will pay $1 for a $2 item that she doesn't want.

MATURITY
Women mature much faster than men. Most 17-year old females can function as adults.

Most 17-year old males are still trading baseball cards and giving each other wedgies after gym class. This is why high school romances rarely work out.

HANDWRITING
To their credit, men do not decorate their penmanship. They just chicken-scratch.

Women use scented, colored stationery and they dot their "i's" with circles and hearts. Women use ridiculously large loops in their "p's" and "g's". It is a royal pain to read a note from a woman. Even when she's dumping you, she'll put a smiley face at the end of the note.

GROCERIES
A woman makes a list of things she needs and then goes out to the store and buys these things.

A man waits till the only items left in his fridge are half a lime and an almost empty milk bottle. Then he goes grocery shopping. He buys everything that looks good. By the time a man reaches the checkout counter, his cart is packed tighter than the Clampett's car on Beverly Hillbillies. Of course, this will not stop him from going to the 10-items-or-less lane.

SHOES
When preparing for work, a woman will put on a Mondi wool suit, then slip on Reebok sneakers. She will carry her dress shoes in a plastic bag from Saks. When a woman gets to work, she will put on her dress shoes. Five minutes later, she will kick them off because her feet are under the desk.

A man will wear the same pair of shoes all day.

LAUNDRY
Women do laundry every couple of days.

A man will wear every article of clothing he owns, including his surgical pants that were hip about fifteen years ago, before he will do his laundry. When he is finally out of clothes, he will wear a dirty sweatshirt inside out, rent a U-Haul, and take his mountain of clothes to the laundromat. Men always expect to meet beautiful women at the laundromat. This is a myth perpetuated by re-runs of old episodes of "Love, American Style."

SOCKS
Men wear sensible socks. They wear standard white sweat socks.

Women wear strange socks. Socks that are cut way below the ankles, that have pictures of clouds, that have a big fuzzy ball on the back.

MIDLIFE
When a woman reaches midlife, she goes through a variety of complicated emotional, psychological, and biological changes. The nature and degree of these changes vary with the individual.

Midlife in a man provokes a uniform reaction - he buys aviator glasses, a snazzy French cap and leather driving gloves, and goes shopping for a Porsche.

THE TELEPHONE
Men see the telephone as a communication tool. They use the telephone to get short messages to other people.

A woman can visit her girlfriend for two weeks, and upon returning home, she will call the same friend and they will talk for three hours.

DIRECTIONS
If a woman is out driving and she finds herself in unfamiliar surroundings, she will stop at a gas station and ask for directions.

Men consider this to be a sign of weakness. Men will never stop and ask for directions. Men will drive in a circle for hours, all the while saying things like, Looks like I've found a new way to get there." and, "I know I'm in the general neighborhood. I recognize that 7-11 store."

TOYS
Little girls love to play with toys. Then when they reach the age of 11 or 12, they lose interest.

Men never grow out of their obsession with toys. As they get older, their toys simply become more expensive and silly and impractical. Examples of men's toys: little miniature TV's. Car phones. Complicated juicers and blenders. Graphic equalizers. Small robots that perform various tasks on command. Video games. Anything that blinks, beeps, and requires at least 6 "D" batteries to operate.

PLANTS
A woman asks a man to water her plants while she is on vacation.

The man waters the plants. The woman comes home five or six days later to an apartment full of dead plants. No one knows why this happens.

CAMERAS
Men take photography very seriously. They'll shell out $4000 for a state-of-the-art camera and take photography classes.

Women purchase disposable cameras. Of course, women often end up taking better pictures.

GARAGES
Women use garages to park their cars and store their lawnmowers.

Men use garages for many things. They hang license plates in garages, they watch TV in garages, and they build useless lopsided benches in garages.

BATHROOMS
A man has six items in his bathroom: a toothbrush, toothpaste, shaving cream, razor, a bar of soap, and a towel.

The average number of items in the typical woman's bathroom is 337. A man would not be able to identify most of these items.

ARGUMENTS
A woman has the last word in any argument.

Anything a man says after that is the beginning of a new argument.

FUTURE
A woman worries about the future until she gets a husband.

A man never worries about the future until he gets a wife.

SUCCESS
A successful man is one who makes more money than his wife can spend.

A successful woman is one who can find such a man.

MARRIAGE
A woman marries a man expecting he will change, but he doesn't.

A man marries a woman expecting that she won't change, and she does.

DRESSING UP
A woman will dress up to go shopping, water the plants, empty the garbage, answer the phone, read a book, get the mail, etc.

A man will dress up for weddings or funerals.

NATURAL
Men wake up looking as good as when they went to bed.

Women somehow deteriorate during the night.

CHILDREN
Women seem to be able to remember every little detail of each child's life - the first tooth, doctor's appointments, school pick-up times, food preferences, etc.

Some men are only aware that there seems to be an increasing number of short people in the house.

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Sunday morning we learned of the passing of another former member of the administration, Luena Barker, who had passed away following a massive stroke. Here's the information we received by email yesterday on campus: "Please pray for the family and friends of Miss Luena Barker, '50 grad and former dean of women, who passed away this past weekend. The funeral service will be Wednesday at 1 p.m. at the Braun-Everiss-Wagley Funeral Home (1501 W. Maumee St., Adrian, Mich.). Viewings will be Tuesday from 2 to 4 p.m. and 6 to 8 p.m. and Wednesday at 12 p.m." I've copied Miss Barker's obituary from the Greenville News and put it on my website at http://ivman.com/barker.html for those of you who would like to read it.

quotation...

"Any married man should forget his mistakes. There's no use in two people remembering the same thing." - anonymous (probably by the speaker's wise decision to remain so....)

=^..^= =^..^=
Rob

The easiest way to find something lost around the house is to buy a replacement.

Auctions


Recently my wife and I experienced a slice of Americana with which we were not familiar - we attended an estate auction. My wife would like to find a Hoosier cabinet in good shape to give us more storage in our kitchen, and a friend told us about one to be sold at the estate auction we attended. The cabinet was in pretty rough condition, and at the prices that other things were going for, we did not stay until the larger pieces of furniture were auctioned off. But the people and the atmosphere were very interesting to us novices! In light of that, I'm sending some things related to auctions - the first items are humorous, and the last item is a more reflective piece about an auction.

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A man went to a bird auction one day. While there, he placed a bid on an exotic parrot. He really wanted this bird, so he got caught up in the bidding. He kept on bidding, but kept getting outbid, so he bid higher and higher and higher. Finally, after he bid way more than he intended, he won the bid - the fine bird was finally his!

As he was paying for the parrot, he said to the auctioneer, "I sure hope this parrot can talk. I would hate to have paid this much for it, only to find out that he can't talk!"

"Oh, do not worry," said the auctioneer. "He can talk. Who do you think kept bidding against you?"

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A battered old television set was put up for sale at an auction. Although the auctioneer insinuated that he didn't think it would ever work, a man bid it up to $20. The man gave his bidder number as 45. Later, a woman bought an article and announced her bidder number as 45. Wanting to verify the number, the auctioneer asked if the man who bought the TV was her husband. "I claimed him as my husband," she snapped, "before he bought that television set."

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Auction: A popular social gathering where you change a horse from a financial liability into a liquid asset.

Auctioneer: A person who looks forbidding.

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Two idiots bought a bunch of horses at an auction, paying $100 apiece for the whole lot of them. Then they drove to another auction and sold all their horses for the same price they had initially paid for them. After counting their money, they realized that they ended up with the same amount of money that they had started out with initially. "See!" said one, "I told you we should have bought more horses!"

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Bidding at a local auction was proceeding furiously, when the auctioneer received a note from an assistant, "A gentleman in this room has lost a wallet containing $10,000. If it is returned, he will pay a reward of $2,000." There was a moment's silence, and then from the back of the room came a cry, "Two Thousand Five Hundred!"

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At an auction a man bought, for what he thought a reasonable price, both a Stradivarius and a Rembrandt. He was very happy with them, since the price he paid was so low, for objects made by very famous people. He decided to go to an appraiser and have them officially valued. The appraiser said, "Well sir, indeed it's a Stradivarius and a Rembrandt, but it's a shame Stradivarius couldn't paint and Rembrandt couldn't build violins."

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Finally an old favorite - a poem about an auction...

The Old Violin - Myra Brooks Welch

'Twas battered and scarred, and the auctioneer
Thought it scarcely worth his while
To waste much time on the old violin,
But held it up with a smile.
"What am I bidden, good folks," he cried,
"Who'll start the bidding for me?"
"A dollar, a dollar. Then two! Only two?
Two dollars, and who'll make it three?"

"Three dollars, once; three dollars, twice;
Going for three..." But no,
From the room, far back, a grey-haired man
Came forward and picked up the bow;
Then wiping the dust from the old violin,
And tightening the loosened strings,
He played a melody pure and sweet,
As a caroling angel sings.

The music ceased, and the auctioneer,
With a voice that was quiet and low,
Said: "What am I bid for the old violin?"
And he held it up with the bow.
"A thousand dollars, and who'll make it two?
Two thousand! And who'll make it three?
Three thousand, once; three thousand, twice,
And going and gone," said he.

The people cheered, but some of them cried,
"We do not quite understand.
What changed its worth?" Swift came the reply:
"The touch of the Master's hand."
And many a man with life out of tune,
And battered and scarred with sin,
Is auctioned cheap to the thoughtless crowd
Much like the old violin.

A "mess of pottage," a glass of wine,
A game - and he travels on.
He is "going" once, and "going" twice,
He's "going" and almost "gone."
But the Master comes, and the foolish crowd
Never can quite understand
The worth of a soul and the change that is wrought
By the touch of the Master's hand.

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updates...

The membership of the ivman list has passed the 1700 mark this past week. That's a growth of 100 new subscribers in the last two months! I'm truly amazed!

My wife and I attended the funeral service for Dr. Fremont last Tuesday evening and were blessed and encouraged as his son, grandson, and son-in-law eulogized him. As we had suspected, at home he was exactly what we all saw in public. I remember fondly his giving us "general prin-ci-PLLLes" (my attempt in writing to simulate his pronunciation of the word) in his classes. Some of those principles were alluded to that night as an integral part of his daily way of life. Dr. Fremont lived what he taught. It's sad that recent generations of college students have not been able to sit under his teaching. This was evident by those in attendance at the funeral - the average age of those in attendance must have been between 55 and 60. I've copied Dr. Fremont's obituary from the Greenville News and put it on my website at http://ivman.com/drfremont.html for those of you who would like to read it.

quotation...

"The best argument against democracy is a five-minute conversation with the average voter." - Winston Churchill

=^..^= =^..^=
Rob

One sure way you can tell that you're getting older is if you go to an antique auction and three people bid on you!

Lives Touching Lives


At church yesterday morning we learned that Dr. Walter Fremont had passed away earlier that morning. In December he and his family celebrated 20 years of his survival after being diagnosed with ALS - Lou Gehrig's disease in December 1986. He has to be among those who have lived the longest with this horrible disease. And it wasn't even the ALS that caused his death - it was internal bleeding!

Dr. Fremont's influence on me as a student in several of his classes was huge, much greater than I realized at the time. His love for the Lord and for people and his enthusiasm for life and service were evident to all his students and left a mark on us all. If he had not encouraged us to go visit the displays at the Principals' Conference on campus my senior year, I would probably not be a teacher now. And now as I teach I feel greater freedom just to be myself because of his example. I remember his standing on his desk and doing many other zany things to get or keep our attention or to get his points across.

In my summer work as an IT tech, I worked on his computer this past summer at Barge Hospital on campus. Even with his severe limitations, he was cheerful and encouraging as always. He even used his only finger and thumb that he could still move to give his repaired computer a command to tell me thanks, praise the Lord, and have a great day!

Furthermore my wife and I counted his daughter Elaine Fremont as a good friend and were shocked and saddened by her sudden death in an automobile accident in the mid 90s. Like her dad, her life was about others rather than self. I have a page on my site about a holiday she invented - Bonza Bottler Day. You can read about it on the official page her family has put up about the holiday, Official Bonza Bottler Day website.

I'm sure Dr. Fremont and Elaine are enjoying a grand reunion after over 10 years of separation.

For those interested - the visitation will be this evening (Monday) from 6:30-8:30 in the War Memorial Chapel on the campus of BJU and the funeral service will be Tuesday evening at 7:00 at Hampton Park Baptist Church here in Greenville.

As I reflected on Dr. Fremont's impact on my life, I thought I'd send a special iv early this week to honor him and the way he touched lives.

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Do famous and powerful people wear sunglasses because the spotlights blind them to reality? Maybe they suffer from a delusion that earthly power means something. (It doesn't.) Some may suffer from the misconception that titles make them special. (They don't.) Others have the impression that temporal authority always makes an eternal difference. (It doesn't always.)

To prove the point, take this quiz:

1. Name the ten wealthiest people in the world.
2. Name the last ten Heisman trophy winners.
3. Name the last ten winners of the Miss America contest.
4. Name five people who have won the Nobel or Pulitzer prize.
5. How about the last decade's worth of World Series winners?

How did you do? I won't tell you how poorly I did. I think most people don't do very well on it. With the exception of you trivia hounds, most of us don't remember the headliners of yesterday too well. Surprising how quickly we forget such "important" things, isn't it? And those categories mentioned above are no second-rate achievements. These are purportedly the best in their fields. However, the applause dies. Awards tarnish. Achievements are forgotten. Accolades and certificates are buried with their owners.

Here's another quiz. See how you do on this one:

1. Think of five people you enjoy spending time with.
2. Name ten people who have taught you something worthwhile.
3. Name five friends who have helped you in a difficult time.
4. List several teachers who have aided your journey through school.
5. Name half a dozen heroes whose stories have inspired you.

Easier? It was for me, too. The lesson? The people who make a difference are often not the ones with this world's acclaim, but the ones whose lives truly touch other lives.

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This is Rob again...
Some of you have had profound influences on my life (and I thank you for it), and some of you have been influenced by mine. (I hope it's been for the good.) Our life touches other lives, for good or for ill. Let's all keep trying to have a positive influence on the lives we touch. Things are temporal ... people are forever.

quotation...

"Do I see my world as a tourist or as a missionary? Do I just admire the beauty of the attainments or do I see the bondage and death?" - Dr. Drew Conley

=^..^= =^..^=
Rob

Teachers live forever in the hearts they touch.

Résumé Mucho!


Part of today's job search is an eye-catching résumé (or C.V. -curriculum vitae - in some parts of the world). A poorly written résumé can ruin a person's chances of landing that desired position. Below you'll see some examples of statements that are *not* résumé enhancers! You will have to read some of them fairly closely to catch the faux pas - unfortunate wordings, definitely "oops!" admissions, misspellings, etc. The following is a list of some bloopers that have supposedly appeared on actual job candidates' résumés, job applications, and cover letters:

"I am loyal to my employer at all costs. Please feel free to respond to my résumé on my office voice mail."

"Finished eighth in my high school graduating class of ten."

"Suspected to graduate early next year."

"Proven ability to track down and correct erors."

"Qualifications: No education or experience."

"Thank you for your consideration. Hope to hear from you shorty."

"I am a quick leaner, dependable and motivated."

"Here are my qualifications for you to overlook."

"Personal Qualities: Outstanding worker, flexible 24 hours a day, seven days a week, 365 days a year."

"Work Experience: Maintained files and reports, did data processing, cashed employees' paychecks."

"Work Experience: Responsibilities included checking customers out."

"I am a great team player I am."

"I have lurnt Word Perfect 6.0, computor and spreadsheat progroms.

"Very experienced with out-house computers."

"Spent several years in the United States Navel Reserve."

"1881-1995: Spent my time teaching and going to school for computer science."

"I never take anything for granite."

"To Home-Ever it concerns."

"Reason for leaving: maturity leave."

"Received a plague for Salesperson of the Year."

"Wholly responsible for two (2) failed financial institutions."

"Terminated after saying, 'It would be a blessing to be fired.'"

"I am writing to you, as I have written to all Fortune 1000 companies every year for the past three years, to solicit employment."

"I'm a lean, mean marketing machine."

"At the emphatic urging of colleagues, I have consented to apply for your position."

"Failed bar exam with relatively high grades."

"Completed 11 years of high school."

"Overlooked all areas to ensure an overwhelming success."

"I am anxious to spread my wings in new directions and soar to new heights."

"Qualifications: I have a current passport."

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Then once you've landed a job, what will they write about you in performance reviews or letters of recommendation - especially in this litigious world where businesses get sued for stating the truth?! For those of you have to write such things in today's work climate, here are some ideas for things you could say when you're trying to be as positive yet honest as you can be for all parties concerned. The built-in ambiguity assures that you will be lawsuit proof.

Ambiguous Letters Of Recommendation:

For the chronically absent:
"A man like him is hard to find."
"It seemed her career was just taking off."

For an employee with no ambition:
"She could not care less about the number of hours she had to put in."
"You would indeed be fortunate to get this person to work for you."

For an employee who is so unproductive that the position would be better left unfilled:
"I am pleased to say that this candidate is a former colleague of mine."
"I can assure you that no person would be better for the job."
"(Name of employee) worked for me for (number of years/months) and when he left, I was totally satisfied."

For an employee with lackluster credentials who is not worth further consideration as a job candidate:
"I feel his talent is wasted here."
"I would urge you to waste no time in making this candidate an offer of employment."
"All in all, I cannot say enough good things about this candidate or recommend her too highly."

To describe a person who is totally inept:
"There is nothing you can teach a man like him."
"I most enthusiastically recommend this candidate with no qualifications whatsoever."

For the employee who often comes to work under the influence:
"We generally found him loaded with work to do."
"Every hour with her was a happy hour."

For a dishonest employee:
"Her true ability was deceiving."
"He's an unbelievable worker."

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updates...

After an extremely enjoyable time with loved ones, we made our trek back to Greenville on New Year's Day. The trip was easy, with low levels of traffic, heavier mainly near the big cities along the way. Next week is the beginning of second semester classes. It will be good to see my students again.

One of my new year's resolutions is to resume posting my weekly iv's to the blog, contrary to my October 18th blog entry below. Blogs are "weblogs" of people's lives, and my iv's generally include a "personal update." This post is the first weekly entry for 2007. Happy New Year!

quotation...

"Let your life be a chronicle of the activity of God." - Dr. Drew Conley

=^..^= =^..^=
Rob

He does the work of three men ... Larry, Moe, and Curly.

How to Give Your Cat a Pill


Not only did we have to give pills to our cat Linus the last couple of months of his life, but we also have to give pills to another one of our cats three times a week. These lovely experiences have reminded me of something in my files - how to give your cat a pill. After that I have also added another cat story I received recently.

How to give your cat a pill...

1. Grasp cat firmly in your arms. Cradle its head on your elbow, just as if you were giving baby a bottle. Coo confidently, "That's a nice kitty." Drop pill into its mouth.

2. Retrieve cat from top of lamp and pill from under sofa.

3. Follow same procedure as in 1, but hold cat's front paws down with left hand and back paws down with elbow of right arm. Poke pill into its mouth with right forefinger.

4. Retrieve cat from under bed. Get new pill from bottle. (Resist impulse to get new cat.)

5. Again proceed as in 1, except when you have cat firmly cradled in bottle-feeding position, sit down on edge of chair, fold your torso over cat, bring your right hand over your left elbow, open cat's mouth by lifting the upper jaw and pop the pill in - quickly. Since your head is down by your knees, you won't be able to see what you're doing. That's just as well.

6. Leave cat hanging on drapes. Leave pill in your hair.

7. If you're a woman, have a good cry. If you're a man, have a good cry.

8. Now pull yourself together. Who's the boss here anyway? Retrieve cat and pill. Assuming position 1, say sternly, "Who's the boss here, anyway?" Open cat's mouth, take pill and...Oooops!

9. This isn't working, is it? Collapse and think. Aha! Those flashing claws are causing the chaos.

10. Crawl to linen closet. Drag back large beach towel. Spread towel on floor.

11. Retrieve cat from kitchen counter and pill from potted plant.

12. Spread cat on towel near one end with its head over long edge.

13. Flatten cat's front and back legs over its stomach. (Resist impulse to flatten cat.)

14. Roll cat in towel. Work fast; time and tabbies wait for no man, or woman.

15. Resume position 1. Rotate your left hand to cat's head. Press its mouth at the jaw hinges like opening the petals of a snapdragon.

16. Drop pill into cat's mouth and poke gently. There! It's done.

17. Vacuum up loose fur (cat's). Apply bandages to wounds (yours).

18. Give yourself two aspirins by whatever means works best for you, and lie down.

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Here's a story about a cat who was a bit of a pill himself....

A man absolutely hated his wife's cat and decided to get rid of him one day by driving him 20 blocks from his home and leaving him at the park.

As the man was getting home, the cat was walking up the driveway.

The next day he decided to drive the cat 40 blocks away. He put the beast out and headed home.

Driving back up his driveway, he saw that the cat was already there!

He kept taking the cat further and further, and the cat would always beat him home. At last he decided to drive miles and miles away, turning right, then left, over bridges, on and on, until he reached what he thought was a safe distance from his home, and he left the cat there.

Hours later the man called home to his wife, "Jen, is the cat there?"

"Yes," the wife answers, "why do you ask?"

Frustrated, the man answered, "Please put that wretched cat on the phone - I'm lost and need directions!"

quotation...

"All the days of the afflicted are bad, but a cheerful heart has a continual feast." Proverbs 15:15

=^..^= =^..^=
Rob

Political correctness strikes again! A group here in the USA should no longer be referred to as "hillbillies." The proper designation is now "Appalachian-Americans." A special thank you to those who will remember this in future conversations.