Day By Day© by Chris Muir.

Sunday, September 24, 2006

What a day! First, thanks to the kind person who donated money through PayPal to help the cause. I can't begin to express my appreciation.

Second, I went to town and watched two football games this evening. My grandson Sammy is playing Mighty Mites football now. He's so cute in his uniform. Now all we need to do is teach him about the game. He had no idea what he was doing out there. I wanted to punch his coach. Nevertheless, his team won their game 28-6. We had to stay for the second game because my eldest granddaughter was a cheerleader. We took our video camera and taped it. Gonna be great blackmail fodder when she starts dating. We didn't make it to the end of the game, because the wind was blowing fairly hard and it got kinda cold out there. I was so stiff from sitting on the aluminum bleachers I could hardly walk to the car. But we had a good time.

Lastly, and certainly not leastly(?), thanks to all who are praying for us. Please don't stop yet.

Yeah, right...
You Should Drive a BMW

Refined and classy, you want a car that looks rich... and goes fast!
What Sports Car Should You Drive?

Wednesday, September 20, 2006

Surgeons in China who successfully performed a penile transplant a couple of weeks ago have had to remove the transplant because of psychological problems for the patient and his wife. So I guess the problems are all in his head?

I'm sorry, but there is absolutely no excuse for this:
School officials apologized after an X-rated font was used on a third-grade spelling packet handed out to parents. The font showed male and female stick figures in provocative poses to form the letters of the alphabet.
They say it was an accident. I say it was deliberate. First of all, why was that font even available? Secondly, was the teacher blind? I predict neither question can be answered to any satisfaction, at least on my part, and I'm not even one of the parents involved.

This little boy really, really wants to be a cop:
The stuffed reindeer had apparently gotten out of hand so 6-year-old Kevon Gorham, who wants to be a police officer, handcuffed one of his favorite toys.

Just to make sure the animal didn't run, or fly, away, the child attached one end of the toy handcuffs to his own wrist.
The most amazing part of the story to me was the fact that the cops couldn't set him free; a fire department engineer had to pick the lock with a hairpin. Really inspires confidence, no?

Okay, I'm back. Here is a little story that just sort of sets the mood around here:
Organizers of a campaign trying to clear Vienna's streets of dog droppings urged residents Thursday to record how many turds they see in the space of five minutes and report the figure as part of an impromptu census.
Now that's a crappy job. (C'mon, you were thinking it.)

Tuesday, September 19, 2006

Thanks to those who were checking up on me. Been on a blogging downer the past little while, plus Monday was my 30th wedding anniversary. I'm planning to resume my posting duties this evening. Sorry I've been so lax. Daily trials and tribulations are bogging down my mind. Somehow I've got to find about $400 by the end of the month, and I don't have the slightest idea where I'll find it. Pray for me and Sir Mugley.

Wednesday, September 13, 2006

I see more sponsors have jumped ship when it comes to sponsoring Survivor this year. That's just dumb. In a commercial, Jeff Probst stated that this was a "sociology experiment", and I agree. But besides the show, the bigger study should be how these people are reacting to the teams being divided by ethnic group. What are they so afraid of?

The authorities should put this guy under the jail.
A man from Willard, Missouri was taken into custody just before 6:00 pm Wednesday, accused of throwing a 5-year old girl into McDaniel Lake north of Springfield.
He told that poor child that her mother was already dead, and she would soon be, too. Thank God some guys were fishing in a no-fishing area and saw what happened. Physically, the child will be fine. I wouldn't be surprised to find out that she had a fear of water when she was older that she couldn't explain.

Back to regular programming now. This week's Carnival of Recipes is hosted by One For The Road.

Sticking with the food theme, the Texas State Fair is known for coming up with new fair foods. This year is no different. Deep Fried Coca Cola. Count me in. I'd love to try it.

A thief in Cromwell, Indiana stole 350 pounds of porkburgers and hot dogs meant for a benefit. The swine.

And finally, a fish got even with a man in Florida.
A Florida diver shot a large grouper with a spear gun then apparently drowned when the fish sped into a hole, entangling the man in the line attached to the spear, investigators said Monday.

Wow, what a week so far! The 2,996 Project was a smashing success. Except for a scant handful of sites that were set up as cruel jokes (no one was amused) all the tributes were lovely. Thank you to everyone who sent me e-mails about my tribute to Jimmy White. It didn't dawn on me until long after I finished the tribute, but Jimmy and my nephew Mark had the same birthday. Strange how these things happen.

The plans are already in the works for next year's tribute. I'll volunteer again, as I learned a great deal about not only one of the victims, but myself. If any of my readers want to volunteer, but have no blog to use, let me know. You can post it here.

If you'd like to read some of the other tributes that were written, the most current database I have is here.

Monday, September 11, 2006

James Patrick White, 34, bond trader at Cantor Fitzgerald...

That single line doesn’t begin to tell you about this wonderful man I’ve met over the past few weeks. James Patrick White, called Whitey by all of his friends, was the firstborn of five children, three boys and two girls. Born June 22, 1967, he grew up in a house of love, a role model to his younger brothers and sisters. He also knew how to dress to impress, even at a young age.

He not only enjoyed school, he excelled in his classes. He was driven and had a real thirst for knowledge that showed all through his life. He set goals for himself then strived until they were accomplished. He had a real love for reading, yet he wasn’t just a bookworm; he also enjoyed many sports, including tennis and learning to ski at an early age.

Jimmy was chosen as the speaker at his eighth grade graduation. The speech was entitled “Beating to a Different Drummer”. That was something that always applied to Jimmy’s life. He really started to shine in high school.

Jimmy was a B student at Hightstown High School. He, like many of us, found things he’d rather be doing than studying. Being a typical high school student, he spent time goofing off with his friends, occasionally getting into trouble for breaking curfew or drinking. On the other hand, he excelled in sports. He played varsity tennis in high school, winning the state championship. Even after graduation from college he stayed close to his high school buddies.

Jimmy came into his own in college. He got excellent grades, yet had time to have fun. He joined the Alpha Tau Omicron fraternity at Clemson University. His page in the ATO pledge book reads: “The real difference between men is energy. A strong, settled purpose and an invincible determination can accomplish almost anything and in this lies the distinction between great men and little men.” This statement fit Jimmy perfectly.

One roommate said Jimmy had a wonderful sense of humor. You couldn’t be around him without smiling and laughing. Another friend said he always had a smile on his face and a friendly greeting. I can believe that; every photograph I’ve seen shows him smiling like he just got a great Christmas present. He could always be counted on to see the bright side of any situation. He had a warmth in his eyes and joy in his soul. Yet that fierce determination never left him. Jeff and Jodi Jacobson said they’d never met anyone so sure of himself. Once he took a friend to the top of the Empire State Building. As they looked out across the skyline, Jimmy pointed out the Twin Towers. He said, “One day, I’m going to work there.” There was no doubt in anyone’s mind that he would.

His fraternity brothers looked up to him as a leader as well. One of them wrote that they learned three lessons from Jimmy about how you should treat people.
1. Make people laugh. Jimmy always put people at ease when he was with them.

2. Share. Jimmy would share anything he had with anyone who was in need.

3. Look for the good in everyone. Jimmy was open-minded and non-judgmental. He took the time to find common ground with everyone he met. He valued the opportunity to get to know people from different backgrounds and people with different interests and opinions.

One of his friends wrote “Heroes touch lives everyday through the selfless passion by which they choose to live their lives. Jim White grew into such a hero. We all could learn from those words he wrote... live your lives with passion!

That he did. He loved to watch Clemson football, even climbing the walls with his friends to get in when they didn’t have tickets (naughty naughty!) He drove a ‘69 cherry red Mustang convertible, but always seemed to have trouble with the “clutch jutter”. He sold it in college because it couldn’t handle driving back and forth to Jersey. He continued his love for skiing, taking on the double and triple diamond slopes, as well as the moguls.

He enjoyed mountain biking as well. He once took a biking trip in Utah through some pretty rough terrain. He ran in the NY marathon three times, twice with brothers and once by himself.

He enjoyed attending all sorts of sporting, and non-sporting, events. He rarely, if ever, missed the U.S. Open, feeding his love of tennis. He also managed to get tickets to the World Series, and to see Bruce Springsteen in concert, as any good Jersey boy would. He wasn’t quite immune to getting into mischief, however. Such as the time in 1995 when he and his friends were asked to leave Madison Square Garden during the women’s WTC Tennis Tournament for being inebriated.
Jeff Jacobson once said Jimmy had a natural courage that created a steady, unwavering way about him. He didn’t seem to be afraid of anything, and he made life an adventure for all who came in contact with him.

Jimmy even challenged himself overseas. He ran with the bulls in Pamplona, and also took on the “Walk of Kings” in El Chorro, Spain with Craig and Al, two of his friends. Here’s Al’s description of that challenge:

When Jim, Craig and I were in Spain we went to "the walk of Kings" in El Chorro. It is a tattered old walkway two feet wide at it's widest area with no hand rails and some complete sections missing, leaving any hiker with decisions to make on how to get through. This walkway is suspended hundreds of feet above a gorge from sheer cliffs. It is one of the more unusual and beautiful places that I have ever seen. Toward the beginning of the walk is the most terrifying obstacle that I have ever seen. With 30+ pound backpacks you had to face the wall and inch your way along this sheer cliff. When we arrived at a ninety-degree turn in the cliff, the walkway was broken away leaving nothing but a two-inch wide piece of steel resembling a single railroad track. Craig had done this walk years before and paused before this obstacle looking pale and very frightened and told me to go take a look. I walked forward, looked at what was ahead and returned to Craig shaking as if I had just seen a ghost. Jim was next to approach the obstacle; without pausing, he stepped out onto the steel rail, leaned forward against the sheer wall and disappeared around the corner.
When we finally rested at the bottom of the gorge, I shared my thoughts with Jim and asked why he did not pause at the first obstacle. He had a completely different view of our days activities. To Jim, this was one big challenge and he had to overcome his fears.

Along with his adventurous nature, he had a penchant for practical jokes. Once he pranked a friend who had fallen asleep outdoors by turning him so he’d only sunburn on one side of his body. Once he stacked empty drink cans on a friend at a tennis match so they’d fall when he moved. Naturally he’d just happen to move during the quietest part of the match.

Jim graduated from Clemson University in 1989 with a Bachelor’s Degree in Industrial Engineering and minor in Finance. He got an apartment in Hoboken, called the “Youth Hostel”, which he shared off and on with his brothers Mike and Greg as well as a host of other family and friends. He started working for Cantor-Fitzgerald in the World Trade Center, fulfilling one of his dreams from youth. He became one of the youngest partners in Cantor’s history. A co-worker of Jim’s, Rich Bolton, described Jimmy this way:
I met Whitey when he first came to Cantor from Clemson. He arrived with the thirst for knowledge and the enthusiasm of a kid in a toy store. Jimmy moved up the ranks quickly due to his work ethic and desire to be the best. In no time he was offered a position as a broker on the Ten Year desk. When all hell broke loose and the pressure was on we all had our ways to cope. You would look over at Whitey and he’d be standing there, hair a mess, helping some other broker out of a position while covering one of the busiest customers in the room, logging his trades, typing in orders, yelling at the top of his lungs what was being said on whatever trades that were going on, so all could hear and never missing a beat. God it was fun.
He was extremely focused and intense at work, but he still had time to laugh with his friends. Unlike most office workers, at the end of the day they didn’t go their separate ways; they were a second family. They often went out after work and spent time just enjoying life.
And after all that, he still had energy enough to attend classes at night and on Saturdays, earning an MBA through St. John’s, where he graduated with highest honors and a near-perfect GPA.

At that point in his life, he contemplated pursuing another career path, but after talking to his boss, he decided to stay. He was working the day of the 1993 bombing and had to walk down stairs from the 105th floor - an experience which rattled him, but didn’t deter him from his goals.

After being a free-wheeling bachelor for years, Jimmy was finally thinking of settling down. He had a girlfriend who worked with him at Cantor-Fitzgerald. Her name was Amy O’Dougherty. They were only beginning their relationship together, but the feelings for each other were already deep. She was a friendly, fun-loving Irish girl, who had the energy to keep up with him. They were both working on September 11, 2001.

I’ve learned a great deal about Jimmy White. I’m sure I would have liked him. His passion and enthusiasm for life is seldom found these days. I never met him, but I do miss him. He made his family proud.

There have been two endowment funds set up in Jimmy’s name. The Jim White Clemson Endowment Fund was set up to provide scholarships to outstanding students at Clemson University. The Jim Endowment Organization was set up to provide educational scholarships to Hightstown High School students who exemplify the leadership skills and exceptional drive that Jimmy possessed as a student. This will insure that Jimmy will be remembered for many years to come. I know I’ll never forget him.

Friday, September 08, 2006

A man in New Hampshire is in trouble for acting inappropriately in a Wal-Mart bathroom.
A Nashua man faces a felony reckless conduct charge after his gun discharged in a Wal-Mart bathroom, striking the ceiling and scaring an employee in the next stall.
Good thing the employee was sitting down in the bathroom. Otherwise, he'd have to go home and change.

According to this article, many of the candidates for Congress are planning to pull all advertisements on Monday out of respect for the victims of 9/11. Nice to hear. I'll probably not post much this weekend, unless I come across something I can't wait to tell you about. I'm working on my tribute to James White, which will be posted Monday. I want to get it just right.

Thursday, September 07, 2006

Well, my doctor's visit was short and not so sweet. Since I was already doing the pain killer/muscle relaxer routine, the only thing left is physical therapy. So I have my first visit tomorrow. Ultrasound, hotpacks, range of motion exercises, and nerve stimulation. Twice a week for twelve weeks. Oh, boy. I'll let you know how it goes. Seriously, I hope it works. I'm tired of hurting all the time.

Remember a while back the story about the woman arrested for beating the puppy breeder with the dead chihuahua? She was convicted Wednesday of misdemeanor assault and trespassing. I suppose she would have been charged with a felony if she'd used a German Shepherd.

I realize they don't let people take cell phones into prison, and some people try to find ways around it. However, these prisoners take "personal calls" way, way too far. Ick.

Tuesday, September 05, 2006

Well, that's it for tonight. I've got a doctor's appointment tomorrow, so I must try to rest. What a laugh. I'll see y'all tomorrow night.

You'd think crashing your paraglider would be the worst part of your day, but in this man's case, it wasn't even close.

I was floored when I heard of the death of Steve Irwin by stingray. There are tributes and stories about him all over the net tonight. His enthusiasm and love of critters will be missed.

Here's your "end-of-summer" edition of the Carnival of Recipes, hosted by Trinity Prep School.

Somebody in Brooklyn really knows how to play a practical joke.
Several Brooklyn residents woke up to find their street empty — because someone had posted a No Parking sign and police had towed their rides.
What did they expect, with a neighborhood called DUMBO?

Monday, September 04, 2006

Just one post today. I want to ask my reader (!) to click here and make a donation to the Muscular Dystrophy Association. It will be greatly appreciated. All donations made to MDA are used locally to help victims of these horrible diseases. Please give. You'll feel good about it. Thank you. See you tomorrow.

Friday, September 01, 2006

You Are Grape

You are bold and a true individual. You are very different and very okay with that. People know you as a straight shooter. You're very honest, even when the truth hurts.
You are also very grounded and practical. No one is going to sneak anything by you. People enjoy your fresh approach to life. And it's this honesty that makes you a very innovative person.
What Color Purple Are You?

I don't mean to be so terse with my postings tonight, but September is starting out just as crappy as August ended. Once again, my Social Security check didn't show up when it was supposed to.

Last month, 80 people in this area received their check a day late. This month, five of us didn't get our checks today. Of course, it's nobody's fault. The checks were mailed, they're just lost in transit somewhere. I can only hope it arrives tomorrow, since if it doesn't I'll have to wait until Tuesday before I can even begin to track it down.

In the meantime, thanks to a very kind manager at the local store, we were able to charge some groceries to get us through. But that doesn't really make me feel any better.

When you're on as tight a budget as we are, the least little thing can throw everything into chaos. Some of our bills are paid by automatic payment from the bank, and if that check isn't there, it costs us $33.00 for each insufficient. Just one of those can cause a chain reaction that can take months to correct.

But I'm still alive and relatively healthy, so I should be grateful. Right?

Trekkies of the world should rejoice. The 79 episodes of the original Star Trek are being re-released in syndication. In addition, the special effects and graphics are being upgraded and converted to high definition. Man, I sure hope that a local station is going to show the series.

One thing you must remember if you work for Donald Trump: don't ever get more popular than he is. I think Carolyn Kepcher must have forgotten. She was getting $25,000 speaking engagements and product endorsements in addition to her work for Trump, so she got to hear those famous words: "You're Fired."

An incident on an airplane like this one would make me hesitate to fly.
The pilot of a Canadian airliner who went to the washroom during a flight found himself locked out of the cockpit, forcing the crew to remove the door from its hinges to let him back in, the airline said Wednesday.
Perhaps he should keep a spare key in his pocket in the future.

This bartender must be really good at what she does. It almost makes me want to be a bartender. Almost.

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