Friday, February 29, 2008

Bad Week?

Saying for the day: Whether it's the best of times or the worst of times, it's the only time we've got. Art Buchwald

We have come to the end of another week.
We still don’t know who the Democratic nominee for President will be.
There has been no new revelation concerning coffee.
The same old wars are still running.
Another United States Embassy was burned.
Suicide bombers are still blowing themselves and others up.
There was a another murder on a college campus.
My income tax still isn’t done.
The stupid snow and ice hasn’t gone away.
BBC requested that I die soon.( He is not a friend)
The local Post Office is out of flat rate priority boxes.
Bazza still has his berry good tree picture.
Vista is driving me insane or a good imitation there of.
I lost at canasta to Pennie.
I didn’t spend one single day working on the train.
The dog tore up the Sunday funnies.
My new computer loses its internet connection if I leave it turned on.
So as you can see it wasn’t the greatest week ever.
But next week will be better.

####News from Pigeon Falls-The little town in my basement where the trains still run, dragons fly, and life is back to normal. Old Doc Simpson wants to retire so the town is searching for a new Doctor. They are contacting medical schools for lists of upcoming graduates. It seems that Doctors have become so specialized that there aren’t enough general physicians for little rural towns like Pigeon Falls.
The town is building a clinic with offices and with some basic diagnostic lab facilities. There will be the ability to do x-rays and have some blood work done.They hope this will attract a young doctor. They intend to let him or her use the clinic free of charge if they agree to stay five years or more. Of course the patient has to pay for the lab work or x-rays.
The Ghost Hunters have informed the Fly Inn that they will be back this coming week. They have reserved three rooms. This time they are coming prepared with very special equipment. No [poltergeist is going to get the best of them.
Petrovich still hasn’t translated those driblets and soon the snowmobile weekend will have come and gone. If he wants to show that it has something to do with what is yet to happen he had better get moving.

Today's Link-Throwawayblog- Downtown Thompsonville in winter.
A hard breathing day. The oxygen count started out below normal. I got the church website updated. The new calendar is there. the March newsletter is there and Sunday's bulletin. I watched the last episodes of the Phantom serial. I did some more conversions to Vista. Little by little it all comes together. Now I need a breathing treatment.

Thursday, February 28, 2008


Saying for the day-One man's dream is another man's nightmare.

It is time for another fairy tale or elf tale as it were.
Once upon a time, just before the time when elfin magic got all tangled up in American politics, there was an old couple who got a wish from an elf named Larkin Fife. Like all elf wishes it had horrible consequences and they found themselves living in the back of their van on the wrong side of town, the side of town where people live whose wishes or dreams have failed them . On a very cold day the old man decided they had lived that way long enough. So they moved to the front of the van and drove to Madison. There they went to live with their son Oscar.
The son was happy to have his mother and father come and stay. He was divorced and a very bad housekeeper and his mother soon put the house in order. There was more than enough room except on week ends when Oscars children, who lived with an ex-wife came and stayed with him. Even then it was only slightly crowded.
The old man, who had been a lawyer, before he retired went every day to the big law library at the University. There he visited a little alcove that not even the librarian knew existed. It contained all the books the University had collected on Elfen law. It contained every case where a human had sued an elf because of a wish gone bad. There were one hundred and fifty two cases. The cases that interested our old man were the one’s that humans won. There were fifty one of those. and the entire transcript of every case as presented in Elf Court was included. Only one case was of real value to o our old man. In all the others the winners had received one or two new wishes but there was no way that our old man wanted anything to do with another wish. No ! He wanted Restoration. Everything had to be put back as it was before the wish as if the wish never happened. Elves hate to do Restoration. It’s like admitting there is some flaw in their magic. They would rather give you three new wishes.
One could of course take the new wish and wish everything back the way it was. But this is not the same as Restoration. Indeed the new wish carries the same risk as any wish and comes from different magic than Restoration. So our old man had his heart set on nothing less than Restoration.
The old man discovered that the basic elf law was:
“No wish can be given without a genuine act of kindness on the part of the recipient.”
This meant that no elf could legally entice a human into an act and then give them a wish.
Further he discovered that in an elf court of law it is impossible to lie. The court is covered with a very powerful truth spell.
So after much thought and preparation the old man brought suit in Elf Court Seven in the Jurisdiction of Madison. He couldn’t sue in any human court because human courts don’t recognize the existence of elves. Thus you can not sue what doesn’t exist. Aside from that people lie in human court and our old man needed the truth. He charged that he had been the victim of elfen entrapment.
The following is taken from the actual transcript of that trial:
Old Man(OM)-Is your real name Larken Fife
Elf– No
OM– Were you drunk when you met us.
OM-Were you pretending to be drunk when you met us?
OM-Do u have a wife that is missing>
Elf– No
OM-So this was all a ruse an act.
OM– Why?
Elf– I needed to give out three more wishes to meet my quota.
OM– So the court can see that there was nothing here that was real. It was all done to get me to make a wish. And that is a clear case of elfen entrapment. Further it is such an obvious and grievous case that only Restoration can correct it.
Head Judge– We agree that an elfen crime was committed and stand ready to grant you three new wishes. Because of the nature of the crime we will give you more wishes than we have ever given.
OM– No. Wishes are the main reason for the deception and the entrapment and therefore as a rule of law can not be a solution to the problem. Only Restoration can make right the wrong.
In the morning our old man and his wife found themselves back in their old home. Everything was as it had been. The new HD television was gone. The old furniture was back. They decided that it had all been a dream since there are no such things as elves.

####News from Pigeon Falls-The little town in my basement where the trains still run, dragons fly, and life is back to normal. Pastor Joan did her next sermon in the series on biblical woman last night. She played Martha who was a friend of Jesus. This is the story she told:
My name is Martha.
I live with my sister Mary who is not the most industrious person in the world. In fact she is something if a dreamer.
One day our friend Jesus was coming for lunch. I knew the house had to be cleaned and meals prepared but Mary she didn’t do much.
Then Jesus came. I welcomed him and went back to getting the meal ready and finishing the house cleaning.
Jesus gathered a crowd in front of the house and began to teach. Mary went and sat at his feet.
Here I was working my butt off and Mary she just sat there. Well I put up with that as long as I could. Then I went to Jesus.
I figured he could talk some sense into her. I said "Lord, do you not care that my sister has left me to do all the work by myself? Tell her then to help me."
Now she would have to help and Jesus would see what kind of person she was.
But the Lord answered me, "Martha, Martha, you are worried and distracted by many things; there is need of only one thing. Mary has chosen the better part, which will not be taken away from her"
What a strange answer. What had Mary chosen? What had Mary seen? What had I missed ?
You know in this fast paced world in which you live you might have missed it too.
The one important thin I came to learn was Jesus Himself.
I needed to put aside the distractions and choose Him.
You do too .
And that’s the way she ended the sermon. It sure gave people something to think about.
The Ghost Hunters have left Pigeon Falls. They have promised to come back with new equipment . Nancy’s poltergeist has them all excited. You would think they would take the hint that they aren’t wanted and not come back. But that doesn’t seem to be the case. They will be back.

Today's Link- A Thousand Faces of Mother Henna- Some thoughts on meditation. That's meditation not medication.
It was a good but dull day. I did some reading. I visited all my links. I left comments where I could. I forgot my AOL password so I can't leave a comment on Lois's blog even though I read it.
I watched some more chapters of the Phantom serial. I converted some more programs from Publisher 98 to Publisher 2000. I played a computer game. Breathing was good. Oxygen levels were up. Just a dull day. Now I need a breathing treatment.

Wednesday, February 27, 2008

Microsoft Plunges Ahead

Saying for the day- After growing wildly for years, the field of computing appears to be reaching its infancy. ~John Pierce

My new computer is now in use and for the most part I am very happy with it.
I am not so happy with Microsoft.
I have been doing my web sites in Microsoft Publisher 98. It worked so very well and was so easy to use. I could see just how it would look when I put it on the web.
But Vista doesn’t support Microsoft Publisher 98. That means I have to learn a whole new system and convert all my files.
Now I own Microsoft Publisher 2000. I never liked it. It does it’s web site creation in a different way. It has less features than Publisher 98. But Vista supports Publisher 2000 so I guess I will be learning a new system.
Microsoft seems to throw away the best of the old as they rush to the new.
I am sure there is a newer Publisher than 2000 but with any luck 2000 will last as long as Vista.

####News from Pigeon Falls-The little town in my basement where the trains still run, dragons fly, and life is back to normal. The Ghost Hunters stopped for coffee at Nancy’s and are now more interested in the poltergeist than the Latimer place. The poltergeist took an instant dislike to them and poured hot coffee in their laps. It has never done that before. Then it picked up the head of the team and threw him out the door. He landed in a snowbank so now he was covered with both snow and coffee. I am sure that if you could sue a poltergeist there would have been a law suit.
But the team was not upset by their treatment. No they were excited. This was far better than ghosts which may or may not choose to appear.
They went back to the Fly Inn and got their equipment and then went to Nancy’s to study the poltergeist. Their only problem was that the poltergeist didn’t want to be studied. Suddenly all of their equipment seemed to have a life of its own. Cables moved down the street and then up into the air. The television camera ended up at the top of a light pole but only after taking a close up view of somebody’s tonsils . The special sound recording equipment went off in another direction. Then all four men found themselves floating upside down to the edge of town where they were dumped in the biggest snow drift available.
Now they were soaking wet, cold, and had no usable equipment. One even swears he could hear the poltergeist laughing. You do not want Nancy’s poltergeist upset with you.

Today's Link-Diaporesis- A well written story on thinking.
A very good day. The oxygen level was up again so I didn't need the little tanks. I visited all the links. We got the e-bay stuff ready to go. Betty took them to the Post Office. Bishop Tom called to see how I was doing. That was really nice of him. I finished changing the Church web site over to Publisher 2000.I watched three chapters of the Phantom serial. Now I need a breathing treatment.

Tuesday, February 26, 2008

A Technelogical Marvel

Saying for the Day: Technological progress has merely provided us with more efficient means for going backwards. ~Aldous Huxley

On Sunday because my son Peter was here to do the lifting and the installing I bought a new computer. It has eight times more ram memory than my old one and it runs Vista.
It did not have a wireless card. So I bought a device that plugs into a USB port and gives it that capacity.
When we opened the box and went to load the driver from the included CD we found a warning.
“ Do not use this driver with Vista”
What do we do.
Well we are supposed to go to a website which they list and download a new driver.
That’s good. They have a new driver for me.
There is only one little problem-
I need the device to get to the internet.
I can’t use the device without the driver,.
I can’t get the driver if I can’t get to the internet.
What idiot thought this up.
They knew their disk wouldn’t work with Vista. Why not just include another disk?
So we went to Betty’s computer and downloaded the driver.
It was a very small program.
It could easily be e-mailed except without the internet I don’t have any e-mail.
I suggest we cut a CD and carry it over that way.
My son pulls out his pocket knife. I suggest that suicide is not an answer.
But on his pocket knife is a flash drive.
He plugs it into Betty’s USB port and loads the driver on it.
He plugs it into the USB port on the front of my new computer.
The driver is where it’s supposed to be.
We run it.
We are on the internet.
Isn’t technology wonderful.

####News from Pigeon Falls-The little town in my basement where the trains still run, dragons fly, and life is back to normal. Petrovich is still waiting for an e-mail from Russia. His Russian Monk friends are not the fastest people in the world.
Bonnie McGregor went to Iron Mountain for her ultrasound yesterday. Old Doc Simpson was right she is going to have twins. Poor Bonnie is going to have two kids instead of one. By the time they finish high school she will be seventy two years old, more like a grandmother than a mother. On top of all her fears she is feeling sick. Her husband says that she will survive. They raised three kids and they can raise two more. That’s easy for him to say. He didn’t do much in the raising of the other three.
The people from the Ghost Hunter’s TV show arrived yesterdaywith all kinds of fancy equipment. They are staying at the Fly Inn. Tommy UK visited with them last night and told them all about the local stories concerning the Latimer place.
It seems Mr. Latimer when he was dying swore he would never leave his house and that nobody else could have it. Mrs. Latimer swore she would never leave him. So they haunt the place and drive out anyone who dares to live in their house.

Today's Link-Mountain Mama- A bit about pets.
This was a very good day. My oxygen was up into the mid normal. I didn't use the little tanks at all. I visited all my links. I updated the Church web site and began moving it over to Microsoft Publisher 2000 and out of Microsoft Publisher 98. I began reading Donaldson's latest book " The Last Chronicles of Thomas Covenant. I played a computer game. I began transferring program from the old computer to the new. Now I need a breathing treatment.

Monday, February 25, 2008

Me,Me,Me-Just Me

Saying for the day:"...I'm what I am and I'm what I'm not. And I'm sure happy with what I've got. I live and love and laugh a lot. And that's all I need..." ~ Kenny Chesney

Even More Things You Didn't Need to Know About Me

Stolen shamelessly from Stacy

What kind of soap is in your bathtub right now?
Dial and Dove

Do you have any watermelon in your refrigerator?
Always. I buy slices every week. Not as good as summer watermelon but passable.

What would you change about your living room?
Let's see....I would definitely make it bigger. I think I'd get rid of the sectional sofa with the arm falling off. But nobody touches my chair.

Are the dishes in your dishwasher clean or dirty?
Dirty . You mean it’s supposed to clean them?

What is in your fridge?
Enough to feed an army.

What is on top of your refrigerator?
Some wooden bowls and apples brought back from Haiti and probably a lot of dust.

What color or design is on your shower curtain?
No curtain. Plain old sliding door.

How many plants are in your home?

Is your bed made right now?
No , I just got up..

Comet or Soft Scrub?
Old Dutch Cleanser

Is your closet organized?
Yep. Her stuff on one end. Mine on the other.

Can you describe your flashlight?
It’s red with a little blinking light on the side so you can find it in the dark.

Do you drink out of glass or plastic most of the time at home?
I drink out of a Javanagogh ceramic cup. It lifts the spirit.

Do you have iced tea made in a pitcher right now?
Its ten degrees out . What do you think?

If you have a garage, is it cluttered?
We have a two car garage and are having trouble getting one car in it.

Curtains or blinds?

How many pillows do you sleep with?
Two. But I need one more.

Do you sleep with any lights on at night?
We keep the bathroom light on so I can find it in the middle of the night.

####News from Pigeon Falls-The little town in my basement where the trains still run, dragons fly, and life is back to normal. Pastor Joan shook them up over at Last Lutheran yesterday. She started her sermon by saying that once there was an evangelist who converted many people but was both immoral and lied. People thought she was talking about some television evangelist but then she said it was all recorded in the Bible. At the time the evangelist started her ministry she had had five husbands and was living with some guy. She stretched the truth about what Jesus told her. And yet the whole town got converted. Why. Because she knew Jesus was the Messiah and they believed her. Pastor Joan said if “You believe Jesus is the Messiah. Then there is nothing to prevent you from sharing that good news. If she could do it you can.”
Grandma Nelson has an electric stove today. Her kids s chipped in and bought her one. They thought she was to old to be carrying wood for her old wood stove. To be more exact they were tired of carrying wood for her to use in the old wood stove. Grandma Nelson says she doesn’t like the new stove. It burns things. It’s not like her dependable old stove. It has all these buttons and a thick book of instructions. Her old stove had one lever and you just put in more wood for more heat. Sometimes progress isn’t really progress in Pigeon Falls.
The army came and got its tanks yesterday afternoon. The big helicopters came and loaded them in. Somebody had pasted a picture of General Bradley in his dress on top of one of the tanks. The soldiers were laughing. They quit laughing when they looked inside. Somebody has pumped it full of insulating foam which was as solid as a rock. They did manage to get it into the helicopter and take it away.
One could blame Tommy UK but where would he get insulating foam?

Today's Link-Wolfgrrrl- Where did the sun come from?
Rough breathing day. Started out six points below normal. we needed a monitor cable to get the new computer on line. We found one in the basement. Our basement has everything. I have begun setting up the new computer. I visited links today with it. It was so much faster. It never crashed when making comments. It was wonderful.I spent most of the day moving files so I can begin using this computer to blog with. Now I need a breathing treatment.

Sunday, February 24, 2008

Why Worship?

Saying for the day-The instinct to worship is hardly less strong than the instinct to eat. Dorothy Thompson
My Church is asking its members to write a little essay on why they worship. Then each month one is printed in the monthly mailing.
So I have been thinking about why I go to Church to Worship.
I am an ordained Pastor of the Evangelical Lutheran Church in America therefore if anybody can pray, read the Bible, praise God, and even have Communion without the Church it would be me. I could hold a little service with Betty and then have the rest of the morning to myself.
So why do I go?
Why do I worship in Church?
A long time ago a wise man named Martin Luther said of the second commandment.
“ We should so fear and love God that we do not despise His Word or the preaching of it but gladly hear and learn it.”
Lutheran worship centers in the Word.
That Word has power to change us.
It has the power to renew us.
It has the power to bring us into the very Presence of God.
It has taken a long time but worship is no longer a task it is something I do gladly. It is something I look forward to.
Today is Sunday and I am going to Church. Praise God!

####News from Pigeon Falls-The little town in my basement where the trains still run, dragons fly, and life is back to normal. Cynthia Ann Gertz is being baptized today at Last Lutheran. Pastor Joan will work the Baptism into her sermon. She always does that. In addition to becoming part of the Last :Lutheran family Cynthia will receive a baptismal candle. It is to remind her to let her light shine so that others might come to Christ. She will also receive a necklace with a glass bottle shaped like a cross that will contain some water from her baptism. That’s to remind her that God made her his own through water and the Word. The Church also makes a DVD of the event so that when she gets older she can see her baptism. Pastor Joan uses copies of those DVDs to show Sunday School children their baptism. Baptism is very important at Last Lutheran.
Cynthia’s mother is an active part of Last Lutheran. But her father will be in church for the first time since last Easter. He says he has nothing against the church he just doesn’t feel like going. Today, however, he will be there for his daughter’s baptism. He will make some promises and be given a Small Catechism so that he can teach his daughter the Lord’s Prayer, the Creed, and the ten commandments. Only time will tell if will keep those promises.
After the service there will be a baptismal party. The church will provide coffee and a big cake. The cake says Cynthia Child of God . It has a bible on one end and water on the other. There was a big fight at Last Lutheran over the cake or to be more exact the providing of them. The council decided over Pastor Joan’s objections to cut out the cakes to save money. So Pastor Joan is paying for the cakes herself. A party isn’t a party without a cake.

Today's link-Freedom-The very beginning of a new ministry.
Very good day . Church service went well. here were two baptisms. The bell choir played. There was a brunch after the service. Came home and Peter, Luke and Bree came to visit. Later we went to Perkins for pie. Then to Office Max. I bought a new computer and a new digital camera. It will be a few days before I am ready to use the new computer. There are so many programs to transfer over.Now I need a breathing treatment.

Saturday, February 23, 2008

Monk is Alive

Saying for the day-If only life were like the serials and everybody got saved in the end.

Monk is still alive.
Remember last week the Captain shot him.
I thought maybe he used blanks but he didn’t.
Monk was wearing a bulletproof vest.
I am so relieved.
Twice during the evening it looked like he was going to die again.
Once the evil sheriff had Natalie and Monk covered. We knew he had orders to kill him. Then Monk put out the lights. The Sheriff fired in the dark. Now that would have been a place where a serial would have stopped and made you wait a week.
The next point was when Monk was trying to stop the governor’s car. Just a few more inches and Monk would have joined Trudy. Another place where the old time serials would have stopped and made us wait a week.
But now we live in a faster world. Everything has to fit in an hour because that’s how television works.
The old time serials could be twenty seven minutes one week and fifteen another. The plot determined the time.
I miss those days.

####News from Pigeon Falls-The little town in my basement where the trains still run, dragons fly, and life is back to normal. The Tommy Club is meeting today. They are going to clean up the clubhouse in the hopes of inviting Detective Castle to visit. Tammy keeps telling them their crazy Tommy the Farmer’s Kid says she is becoming a nag. They should never have left her in the club. She isn’t a real Tommy. Tommy UK says to leave her alone she has a right to her opinion. That’s when Tommy PK began singing “ Tommy, Tommy, Tommy’s in love.” Tommy UK punched him and a fight broke out. Now the clubhouse is a bigger mess than it was before and there are two Tommys with black eyes, one each. The good news is they will be gone by the time Detective Castle gets here. The clubhouse might even be clean.
Petrovich is still waiting for an e-mail from the Russian monastery. The first pictures they sent him were of the wrong driblet. But he is sure they understand what he wants and this time will send the right one.
Ten people showed up last night for the Hillary for President rally at the gazebo. That’s a big crowd for a winter political thing in Pigeon Falls. In fact it’s a big crowd for a summer political thing in Pigeon Falls. People in Pigeon Falls aren’t into politics except for the school board. School board elections always draw large voter numbers.

Today's Link-Juggling Life- A story about a wrong word. Funny
Another wasted day. It started great I had coco in a Janvangogh cup. Now that's the way to start the day. There is a link to her shop on the side. This is not a paid advertisement. I just like the cup.The rest of the day I wasted. Played games on the computer. Did a little blog visiting. I need Spring. Now I need a breathing treatment.

Friday, February 22, 2008

Gourmet Popcorn Chicken

Saying for the day:Everything I eat has been proved by some doctor or other to be a deadly poison, and everything I don't eat has been proved to be indispensable for life. But I go marching on. ~George Bernard Shaw

Those of you who read this blog on a regular basis know that I am a gourmet cook. I am, after all, the inventor of the ham and jam sandwich, both toasted and untoasted.
So when Ralph sent me this gourmet chicken recipe I knew I had to share it with you.
So here is the recipe for popcorn chicken:

Here is a chicken recipe that also includes the use of popcorn as a stuffing --imagine that.
When I found this recipe, I thought it was perfect for people like me, who just are not sure how to tell when poultry is thoroughly cooked, but not dried out.
Give this a try.

4 - 5 lb. Chicken
1 cup melted butter
1 cup stuffing (Pepperidge Farm is Good.)
1 cup uncooked popcorn (ORVILLE REDENBACHER'S LOW FAT)
Salt/pepper to taste

Preheat oven to 350 degrees.
Brush chicken well with melted butter salt, and pepper.
Fill cavity with stuffing and popcorn.
Place in baking pan with the neck end toward the back of the oven.

Listen for the popping sounds. When the chicken's butt blows the oven door open
and the chicken flies across the room, it's done.

And you won’t find better popcorn chicken anywhere.
####News from Pigeon Falls-The little town in my basement where the trains still run, dragons fly, and life is back to normal. Petrovich. Still hasn’t posted either of the promised driblets on his website. People are saying that he should do one or the other and stop trying to do two at a time. Petrovich . Petrovich claims there is a scratch on the microfilm right at driblet 132 . Coptic is hard enough to translate but with a scratch it becomes almost impossible. He has contacted the monastery in Russia and they are going to take some pictures and e-mail them to him soon.
The town dragon did a fly over last night. One of the patrons from the Fly Inn bar was coming out as it flew over. It so startled him that he fell down the two steps and off the curb. He said that if he could he’d sue the dragon for pain and suffering. Nobody is paying much attention to him since he fell down those same steps the other night when there was no dragon. The real question is why does the bar have steps?
The “Ghost Hunters” TV show is coming to Pigeon Falls to do a story on the Latimer place. They have all that fancy equipment and can track the ghost and get it on tape. It seems they even have their own exorcist.
While they are here they might look in on Nancy’s poltergeist as well.

Today's Link-Cedar Flame- Another look at life.
A good breathing day but I'm getting cabin fever . I am so tired of snow and ice. I spent the day on the computer for the most part. I updated the Church web site. I played some games. I added the political elf tale to the list of elf tales you can get to on the side. I visited blogs I don't usually visit.Now I need a breathing treatment. Then I can see what happened to Monk.

Thursday, February 21, 2008

A Political Problem

Saying for the Day-Thinking about profound social change, conservatives always expect disaster, while revolutionaries confidentially expect utopia. Both are wrong.Carolyn Heilbrun:
An Elf Tale
Once upon a time, a really short time ago, there lived two men.
One lived in the big and exciting city of Chicago and the other in a little Wisconsin town called Florence.
Chicago , of course, is known as a great Gateway city.
While Florence is known as Florence.
Chicago has the Bears and the Bulls.
Florence once had a winning basketball team.
In any case this story is not about the city or the town but about the two men who lived there. Robert lived in Chicago and Ralph lived in Florence and the one thing they has in common was Presidential Candidate Hillary Clinton.
Robert thought she was perfect. She would make the greatest President ever. She would feed the poor, get us out of the stupid Iraq War, get health care for everybody, and make us once again the world’s greatest nation. He went to every Hillary rally held in Chicago and there were lots of them.
Ralph, on the other hand, thought that Hillary as President would be a disaster. She would ruin the health care system, destroy the economy, and open the nation to wide spread terrorist attacks. He spent his time forwarding anti-Hillary E-mail and there was lots of it.
The two men never met, one being in Chicago and one in Florence, which was probably a good thing.
They would never have gotten along.
This even though Robert’s third cousin on his Mother’s side was also a third cousin of Ralph’s third cousin on his Father’s side.
Fate , elves, and Hillary would cause their lives to intersect for one brief moment that would change the world.
One day as Ralph came out of Barb’s Restaurant he ran into one of those “passing through people” who needed something to eat. Ralph, feeling sorry for him, gave him $ 5.00 and told him to have the special in Barbs. As the man entered the restaurant Ralph turned to find a short man in a green suit with curly shoes standing next to him.
“Because of your kindness” the elf said.”I am granting you one wish.”
On the same day at about the same time in Chicago Robert helped a poor old woman cross the street and carried her groceries to her apartment. As he left the building he met a short man in a green suit with curly shoes.
“Because of your kindness” the elf said.”I am granting you one wish.”
Ralph did not hesitate but wished that Hillary never become President.
Robert did not hesitate but wished that Hillary become President at this election.
Both men got the usual “As you have asked so shall it be “ response.
Both men wished at exactly the same time, right down to the second.
This had never happened before in the history of the Elf Kingdom.
Two people had wished for opposing things before but always at different times and in such cases the last wish always countered the first.
But now the two wishes met head to head.
They came together at Elf Wish Central.
This is sort of an elf factory for wishes.
Because they both were wished at exactly the same time and because both wishes could not be granted the elf factory ground to a halt. Magic began to back up as additional wishes arrived.
All of the elves were called home.
No further wishes could be awarded until the problem was solved.
Since wish bestowing was the primary employment in Elf Land this caused large scale unemployment, a distinct problem for any land.
But the call to quit awarding wishes had come too late.
The pressure of the elf magic pushed out into the Elf Kingdom causing the ground to ripple and breaking dishes that had taken years to accumulate. Now with no dish makers and no magic the poor elves had to eat off of bare tables.
But the magic pushed down into the earth beyond the Elf Kingdom causing earthquakes. Then the magic pushed up into the air causing hurricanes and Global Warming. Day by day it got worse.
The greatest Elf minds were called together . Elf theologians and Elf philosophers were consulted but no solution was seen. All agreed that one could not take back wishes once they were spoken. But one old elf said that when the election comes Hillary will either be elected President or not. Real events will allow one wish to win and then the wishes will be mute and fall away.
So we wait the National election. Until then it is Hillary’s fault that all these bad things are happening. Her fault because she inspired such loyalty from her follower and such dislike from her distracter that they forgot that elf wishes never work the way you expect. Ralph should have known better.

####News from Pigeon Falls-The little town in my basement where the trains still run, dragons fly, and life is back to normal. Petrovich still hasn’t posted driblet 132 despite his promise to do so. He says it has something to do with snowmobiles and the dragon . His problem seems to be trying to translate two driblets at the same time, one on an old lady having a baby and one about snowmobiles.
If it wasn’t bad enough that Pigeon Falls has the worst roads in the country the price of gas at the Perriwinkle station is now $3.50 a gallon. That price is for Regular not Super Premium. People who have to use their cars are moaning and groaning. If some politician offered to tax the oil company executives at 75% they would get lots of votes in Pigeon Falls. On the other hand Dr. Fortress is happy since more people are using his trains instead of cars to go to Iron Mountain and Marquette.
Last Lutheran had good attendance at their Wednesday night service . Pastor Joan is doing a Lenten series on the woman around Jesus. Each week she takes on the character of one of those woman and talks about what it was like to meet Jesus. Last night she played the woman at the well. She really made the character come alive. When she got to the part where the woman sort of knew that Jesus was the Messiah she ran down the aisle shouting “ Come and see the One who told me everything I ever did”. Then she stopped ran back to the front of the congregation, turned, and invited them to “Come and see Jesus”.

Today's Link-Come on Fall With Me- Celebrating one of Life's Special toothy events.
It was a nice day. Breathing was good. Didn't need the little tanks. I visited all my links and that was interesting. I did some work on Betty's computer. Took off Norton's and put on a free virus catcher. I changed her desktop to pictures of Crustal in Winter. I loaded a new game on for her. She went to Bible study. Now I need a breathing treatment.

Wednesday, February 20, 2008

The Primary

Saying for the day: If God wanted us to vote, he would have given us candidates. ~Jay Leno

The Wisconsin Primary is over.
The votes have been counted.
The kids in the playground believed Obama.
That’s what the Hillary and Obama adds reminded me of.
They were like two kids in the playground shouting my dad is smarter than your dad.
Only they shouted or softly said:
“ My health care plan is better than your health care plan.”
“ My plan helps more poor people than yours does.”
“ I can get us out of Iraq faster than you can.”
“ I can beat any Republican in the house”
The kids decided to believe Obama.
I decided to skip the primary and take two aspirins and the commercials would be gone in the morning . And they are!
I win and I get a few weeks free of political adds.

####News from Pigeon Falls-The little town in my basement where the trains still run, dragons fly, and life is back to normal. Today Petrovich is posting driblet 132 on his website. At least he says he is going to post it. It has something to do with snowmobiles.
The Tommy Club met last night. They are planning a big welcome for Detective Castle when he gets off the train. Tammy suggested that he was coming to relax and didn’t want a big welcome. That idea was not well received. Tommy PK muttered something about girls not understanding. The group voted to plan the celebration despite her objections. Every member will be wearing one of Wink’s Woods Castle sweaters. You know the one’s Wink’s had made with the Time cover of Castle reproduced on the front. Tammy said that she’s not spending $22.50 for a sweater and that’s that. Tommy PK said that she wasn’t a real Tommy anyway so they didn’t care. Tommy UK said he’d get her a sweater.
The Latimer place is for sale again. A beautiful two story home with four bedrooms for just $50,000. The last owner Fredrick Ripple , a retiree from the city, only lasted two months. The place is haunted according to Ripple. At first it didn’t bother him or his wife. The ghosts weren’t hurting anything after all. But then they began to irritate them. They would wake up many times during the night because the moaning from the ghosts was so loud. A person does need a good nights sleep. Then there was the flour in the kitchen. A bag of all purpose flour just burst open all by itself and flew all over the kitchen. What a mess! So the Ripples are moving back to the city where there are no ghosts. If you can find a good exorcist the house is a bargain.

Today's Link-Sharon in the House- You have to see these drawings
This was a really great day. My oxygen was up into the high end of the low normal. Betty went to the Quilting workshop and took pictures. I processed the pictures and put them on St. Mark's website. Then Betty and I unpacked all the H0 engines. We tested each one. About half of them don't work. The other half we will sell on eBay. I worked a little more on the elf tale for tomorrow. We went to the midweek Lenten service. It was refreshing. Now I need a breathing treatment.

Tuesday, February 19, 2008

Before They Go

Saying for the day-There are some people to whom we owe a debt so large we can never repay it.

My friend Ralph forwarded this to me. It made me think so I thought I would share it with you.

The elderly parking lot attendant wasn't in a good mood!

Neither was Sam Bierstock. It was around 1 a.m., and Bierstock, a Delray Beach, Fla. , eye doctor, business consultant, corporate speaker and musician, was bone tired after appearing at an event.

He pulled up in his car, and the parking attendant began to speak. "I took two bullets for this country and look what I'm doing," he said bitterly.

At first, Bierstock didn't know what to say to the World War II veteran. But he rolled down his window and told the man, "Really, from the bottom of my heart, I want to thank you."

Then the old soldier began to cry.

"That really got to me," Bierstock says.

Cut to today.

Bierstock, 58, and John Melnick, 54, of Pompano Beach - a member of Bierstock's band, Dr. Sam and the Managed Care Band - have written a song inspired by that old soldier in the airport parking lot. The mournful "Before You Go" does more than salute those who fought in WWII. It encourages people to go out of their way to thank the aging warriors before they die.

"If we had lost that particular war, our whole way of life would have been shot," says Bierstock, who plays harmonica. "The WW II soldiers are now dying at the rate of about 2,000 every day. I thought we needed to thank them."

The song is striking a chord. Within four days of Bierstock placing it on the Web, the song and accompanying photo essay have bounced around nine countries, producing tears and heartfelt thanks from veterans, their sons and daughters and grandchildren.
"It made me cry," wrote one veteran's son. Another sent an e-mail saying that only after his father consumed several glasses of wine would he discuss "the unspeakable horrors" he and other soldiers had witnessed in places such as Anzio, Iwo Jima, Bataan and Omaha Beach. "I can never thank them enough," the son wrote. "Thank you for thinking about them."

Bierstock and Melnick thought about shipping it off to a professional singer, maybe a Lee Greenwood type, but because time was running out for so many veterans, they decided it was best to release it quickly, for free, on the Web. They've sent the song to Sen. John McCain and others in Washington. Already they have been invited to perform it in Houston for a Veterans Day tribute - this after just a few days on the Web. They hope every veteran in America gets a chance to hear it.

GOD BLESS every EVERY veteran...
and THANK you to those of you veterans who may receive this !


Before They Go

####News from Pigeon Falls-The little town in my basement where the trains still run, dragons fly, and life is back to normal. The only man from Pigeon Falls to ever make the cover of Time Magazine is coming home for the big snowmobile race. Well he is coming not so much for the race but to visit his Aunt Emma Castle and to get some rest. Dr. Jonathan J. Castle , world’s greatest detective is tired. His last case ,The Stop Sign was Green, was difficult and exhausting. So he is going to fly into Iron Mountain and take the train to Pigeon Falls. But first he has to give a lecture on modern police work at a symposium in Dallas. After which he flies to New York to be given the key to the city by the Mayor for his brilliant work there.
Tommy TK and Tommy PK ( the Pastor’s Kid )as well as the other Tommy’s in the Tommy club are all excited. Dr. Castle is their hero. They see him as a cross between Sherlock Holmes and Monk. They know all the details of every big case he has ever worked on. Down to the very last Tommy they want to be detectives when they grow up. Their club house which used to be a chicken coop on Tommy FK‘s ( the farmer’s kid) farm is filled with pictures including the Time Magazine cover.
The Tommy club, you remember , was founded , when the kids discovered that there were so many Tommys in their age group. Only Tommys can belong. There is one girl. Her name is Tammy but they decided that was close enough to Tommy and she is really smart.
Petrovich says that as he was looking for the driblet about the old lady having a child he came across a short driblet that might apply to Pigeon Falls. It is driblet 132 and he will post it to his website as soon as he gets the time.

Today's Link-Noble Eagle- A Rough Military Blog
It was a very good day. I visited all my links. I worked at bringing the link list up to date. Betty went to Bible Study. Then I worked on the elf tale for Thursday and it is coming along. My oxygen levels were great all day. Betty voted on her way home from Bible study but I won't say who she voted for. I listed five more items on eBay. I will be so glad when the last item is listed.
Now I need a breathing treatment.

Monday, February 18, 2008

Still More of Me

Saying for the day- We do not deal much in facts when we are contemplating ourselves. ~Mark Twain

Today a meme that gives you two for one

Two names you go by:
1 Grandpa
2. Pastor

Two things you are wearing right now:
1. Glasses
2. Nightshirt

Two of your favorite things to do:
1. Play with trains
2. blog

Two things you want very badly at the moment:
1. to win the Publisher’s Clearing House Give Away
2. to finish selling things on eBay

Two favorite pets you have had/have:
1. Hessa
2. Polly

Two things you did last night:
1. Took breathing treatment
2. Took evening pills

Two things you ate today:(6:00 in the morning)
1. One cough drop
2. A small candy

Two people you last talked to:
1 Betty
2. Pennie

Things you're doing tomorrow:
1. blogging
2. Putting more items on eBay

Longest trips taken: in the last five years
1. Crystal Falls to Neenah
2. Crystal Falls to Madison

Two favorite holidays:
1. Christmas
2. Easter

Two favorite beverages:
1. Diet RC
2. Cocoa

Two things you will buy this year
1. Captain Marvel Movie Serial on DVD
2. Donaldson’s new book

####News from Pigeon Falls-The little town in my basement where the trains still run, dragons fly, and life is back to normal. With the tree problem over and no new crisis on the horizon Pigeon Falls is getting ready for the Third Annual Snowmobile Tournament .Snowmobiles from all over Michigan , Wisconsin, and Minnesota will descend upon the town to take part in one of the most grueling tests of snowmobiles on the circuit. The race starts in downtown Pigeon Falls goes through the woods to the Lake of the Loons . Then it goes once around the lake and back to town. Snowmobiles are sent out in sets of two every five minutes. The total time from start to finish is recorded. There are, of course, those who never finish . Snowmobiles break down over the rugged course and have to be dragged away, This year upward of three hundred machines are expected for the two day event.
The entire town will be involved. Because of the lack of motel space people are renting out open rooms to those who want to come early and look over the course. It makes for an instant Bed and Breakfast. Jack, even though he said he wouldn’t, is having his nephew Brian open the Sauna. He knows when there’s a buck to be made. Both Wink’s Woods and Kivi & Maki are ordering special items related to the day. The Methodist ladies are aiming at selling five hundred pasties. Nancy will sell a lot of saffron buns and coffee. She will have a stand out at the Lake of the Loons to serve the spectators.
All of this in just three weeks.

Today's Link-The Stephford Diaries-Another look at the "to do list".
A very good day. The oxygen was up into the low normal range so I didn't use a tank much of the day. I brought the Church web page up to date and added a history of the congregation. I worked on Thursday's Elf Tale which shows how Hilary is indirectly responsible for Global Warming and earthquakes. Betty and I worked in the basement and hot five more sets ready to list on eBay tomorrow. We are coming near the end. I had trouble with some of the pictures I took ( can't even blame Betty. So they won't be listed until tomorrow. Now I need a breathing treatment.

Sunday, February 17, 2008

Hurt by the Church

Saying for the day- Men will wrangle for religion; write for it; fight for it; die for it; anything but live for it. ~C.C. Colton
Even as I prepare to go to Church this morning I know there are people who won’t be going because they were hurt by some congregation or another. At some point in their lives somebody in the Church said or did something that hurt them. They may have said something unkind. They may have been judgmental. They may have cheated them in some way. But somebody in the Church acted not like a Saint but a sinner.
That’s the tragedy ! The Church is made up of people. Yes they are forgiven people. Yes at times they can be the most loving people. But sometimes the old Adam shows through. Sometimes they are more sinner than Saint.
I feel bad because the people who have been hurt are missing the joy I find in the fellowship. They won’t hear a choir that sounds like angels. They won’t hear the Word read. They won’t hear a Pastor share the insights the Holy Spirit gives him. They will miss so much of the joy and not even know they are missing it.
All I can say to them is look around. There is a fellowship out there that will treat you the way God wants you to be treated. They will support you. They will love you. They will share the joy of Jesus with you. I know because I belong to one of them.

####News from Pigeon Falls-The little town in my basement where the trains still run, dragons fly, and life is back to normal. It is Sunday and Last Lutheran is back to its original before the tree thing schedule. There are now two services one at 8:00 and one at 10:00 with coffee in between. The Church survived all those people staying there and even picked up one new member. Pastor Joan has worked hard on today’s sermon. She wants people to walk with Jesus through Lent to the Cross. She wants them to see what our salvation cost.
Over at the Methodist Church the ladies are feeling pretty good about another successful pasty sale. They sold one hundred and fifty pasties yesterday. That’s a lot of meat and potatoes. They raised enough to buy the paint to repaint the Church. Now it is up to the men to paint it. The men and Sally Watkins. Sally loves to paint. She hate housework. She hates cooking. You will never find her making pasties. But she loves to paint. She will be the first one to the painting bee and the last one to leave. And she is very good at it as well. She did the beautiful gold trim on the arch at Last Lutheran. Of course she got paid for that. She used the money to hire somebody to clean her house. She’s lucky she married Fred Watkins who loves to cook and makes most of the meals.
Petrovich thinks he has found the driblet he was looking for. Now he has to translate it from Coptic into English. This is not as easy as it sounds since the driblets are filled with strange and fantastic images to begin with. Just imagine that you were having dreams of the future. You were seeing things that didn’t exist yet. Yet you would have to find some way to describe them. But Petrovich will do his best.

Today's an interesting meme.
It was a very good day to stay in the house. We did get to Church but not many people ventured out. The choir was at half strength or less but sounded great. It was the 50th anniversary of the first service for St. Marks. We sang some of the same hymns they sang then and the choir did the same choir numbers. It was great. Betty took pictures but not many. In the afternoon I worked on the web Page. I put the pictures in and made some small changes. Now I need a breathing treatment.

Saturday, February 16, 2008

A Serial Ending

Saying for the day-Waiting until next week to save the hero seemed almost impossible but we did it.

Last night it was like going back to the Saturday Matinee again.
I watched a bit of news.( Like the old movie tone news)
I watched two separate episodes of CSI.( The feature films)
Then came the serial. A super hero as great as Bat Man or Zoro was in trouble.
He seemed to have shot the man who blew up his wife.
He did so in cold blood.
Before he can leave the sheriff arrives and arrests him.
He is jailed and held for trial with a million dollar bail.
It doesn’t look good.
But then he escapes on the way to the prison.
They chase him through the woods.
You just know at any moment they will catch him.
But somehow he eludes them.
He ends up in his sidekicks house( every super hero has a sidekick).
She helps him elude a local detective and get out of his handcuffs.
She gives him her dead husbands military uniform as a disguise.
He goes back to the scene of the crime.
He uses his super deductive powers to figure out how he was framed.
It was the sheriff.
He calls his friend the police Captain.
He explains his theory.
The Police Captain turns him in.
The Captain is supposed to go alone to meet him but of course the sheriff and the Captain’s sidekick go as well.
He pulls a gun on the Captain and says he won’t be taken.
The Captain shoots him and he falls off the pier into the water.
There it ends.
A good a cliffhanger as any serial I ever saw.
Like the phantom falling into a pit of crocodiles.
Like The Whip being shot behind the curtain.
Like Billy Batson about to be crushed because his mouth is taped and he can’t say Shazam.
Just like the Saturday serial we have to wait until next week to see if he lives .
But you and I know he will. Super heroes don’t die.
And Monk is a super hero.
He can look between his hands and solve a crime.
He can tell if somebody drank some of his orange juice right down to the ounce.
He has to live. We can’t do without him.
We have to wait a week.
It could be worse they could have made us wait until next season.

####News from Pigeon Falls-The little town in my basement where the trains still run, dragons fly, and life is back to normal. The dragon was back again yesterday. That’s two days in a row. He flew three times around the town and once up the main street as if he was looking for something. Mayor Trumble says we are lucky he didn’t set the whole town on fire.
Nancy’s poltergeist continues to have fun with Nancy’s copies of “Murder in the Sauna”. Now they are floating above the heads of customers in the coffee shop. It hasn’t dropped one on anybody yet .
Wink’s Woods is now selling sweatshirts that say “If the Trees didn’t get us” on the front with a picture of a mean looking tree. On the back it says “ Nothing can”. Every adventure is a chance to sell something.
Not to be outdone Kivi and Maki have postcards with our General in his full dress uniform. It seems Tommy UK took a picture of the General in his camouflage dress when he came out of the Sauna. The postcard is selling well.
Petrovich seems to have locked himself in his study where he is pouring over driblets trying to find one that mentions an old woman giving birth. There are hundreds of driblets. They are in Coptic on microfilm and the task of finding one is not easy unless you know the number.
Life is indeed back to normal in Pigeon Falls.

Todays link-Life's Simple Pleasures-Another look at Global Warming.
A nice day. My oxygen was in the bottom normal range so for the most part I didn't need the tank. I'm still not feeling well but I'm getting there. I visited all my links which was interesting. I changed the Church website a little. I played some games. Betty mailed the eBay stuff so that is done. Tomorrow after Church back to the basement. Now I need a bre4athing treatment.

Friday, February 15, 2008

America the Great

Saying for the day: What the people want is very simple. They want an America as good as its promise. ~Barbara Jordan

The other day BBC left this comment:

I am not patriotic to America, I am a member of the human race and I don't think America and Americans are special.
In fact America was taken over by terrorists. Is still a terrorist, and will fail for that reason, and deserves to.
I'm good with that, America is just too greedy and needy, not like Jesus was at all."

Now the blog he left the comment on was about Saturday Matinees and had nothing to do with America as such. Yet he felt so strongly on the topic that along with telling me I ought to die ( he always does that) he had to leave this diatribe.
For a lot of people America is like a parent they admired and thought was perfect only to discover the parents flaws.

Our Country has failed to live up to its ideals.

We said “ All men are created equal” but treated many as second class.

We said bad guys like Russians, Germans and Japanese torture not us good guys. Then we discovered we torture too.

We were the country of peace. But we found ourselves in wars that made no sense.

We said we believe in freedom of speech. But we discovered we wanted it only for those who agree with us.

We said democracy was the best form of government. But then we saw the mess politicians made in Washington.

We said Capitalism would bring prosperity to all. Then we saw what capitalists will do to make a buck.

There is no question America has failed to live up to its potential, its promise.

But this is not the time to give up on her. This is not the time to turn our back on her. With all her flaws she is still the greatest country in the world.

This is the country that exposed its own racism and has struggled to fight it.

This is the country that helped to rebuild Europe after World War II. And that included Germany which had been our enemy.

This is the Country that created the United Nations and gives it a home.

This is the Country that gives massive amounts of food and money to help people around the world.

It is not all bad.

This is the time to push to get America to live up to her ideals.

It is time for America to be what she was promised to be.

####News from Pigeon Falls-The little town in my basement where the trains still run, dragons fly, and life is back to normal. The town dragon made an appearance last night. It flew up and down the main street as if looking for something. One of the men who was just coming out of the Fly Inn said it just looked happy to be back. Sort of like somebody who had just returned from a business trip or a bad vacation.
For some reason the return of the dragon makes people feel good except, of course, for Mrs. Trumble who still seems to thinks it’s a demon. Having your own dragon to watch over you gives one a feeling of security.
Nancy’s poltergeist is also back. The coffee cups were floating around the café this morning. Nancy has gotten used to it as have her customers. In fact the poltergeist was also missed. Its seems strange they both returned at the same time.
With their return life in Pigeon Falls is truly back to normal.
Tommy TW is getting ready for another book tour. His book “ Murder in the Sauna” is selling very well. He has a chance to go on the Oprah show and probably will take it. He is trying to convince Nancy to go with him but she hates to leave the café. She know that she can’t find anybody to take her place that can make saffron buns like she does. Further she is not sure what the poltergeist will do if she leaves. This morning it took the pile of “Murder in the Sauna” that she had piled in the window and turned them into a revolving circle in the window. It was very impressive. With all that power she doesn’t want to upset it.

Today's link-Winkin Blinkin and Blog- A look at a problem of foster parents.
My oxygen was up and the day was a bit better. I am feeling a little better as well. I got the labels finished for the five items that sold on eBay yesterday. They asre now all packaged and ready to go. Betty went ou to Wal Mart to get some tape as we ran out. My son Pat called yesterday and there is a big train show in Madison tomorrow but the way I feel now I can't face a two hour drive so I guess I'll have to pass it up. Now I need a breathing treatment.

Thursday, February 14, 2008

THe Magician

Saying for the Day-The trees, grass, and even the stones remember the Elves. Old Farland Saying
Once upon a time , a very long time ago as we count time in the land of King Arthur there lived Henry XIV. For those of you who don’t read Latin that was Henery the 14th. His father’s name was Henry, his grandfather’s name was Henry, his great grandfather’s name was Henry. All in all there were 14 Henry. The first 13 were all Potters who practiced magic. So to day Henry would be Henry Potter XIV but last names hadn’t been invented yet. Yes he might very well have been a very distant relative of that very popular Wizard of our day but of that we are not sure. We do know that people who practiced magic in those days were called magicians and not Wizards and there were no schools for them to go to. Magic was taught from one generation to the next as long as the gift was there.
Henry ,however, didn’t seem to have the gift. He did everything his father told him . He waved his hand in the proper manor, he said the right words, but nothing happened. He was good at making pots though and his pots sold better than any others the family made. You see you couldn’t make a living at magic so you had to have a trade and Henry’s family made pots. So though he was a very bad magician he did help to keep the family clothed and in magic supplies which weren’t cheap.
Henry’s father hid the fact that his son couldn’t do magic. When the magicians guild asked when Henry XIV was coming to the meetings his father would tell them that Henry was very busy using his magic to increase pot production but as soon as they got a pot or two ahead he would bring Henry XIV to the meeting. Oliver whose family made cross bows and was Henry’s age was already turning tree branches into snakes. Not very useful but certainly magic.
To be honest Henry’s father was not much of a magician or he might have been able to give Henry some power or at least the ability to fake having power. Now Henry’s grandfather, he was a super magician , could have solved the problem but one day he was distracted and turned himself into a mouse just as the cat came in.
Now while Henry had no power his sister Angeline had powers as great as her grandfather. But instead of this being a blessing it was a curse, Woman were not allowed under penalty of law to practice magic. Any woman who did so was considered a witch and had to be put to death. Further and even worse the family she came from was thrown out of the Guild .Her mother who also had magical powers placed a spell around her when she was very little so she wouldn’t acciudently reveal her abilities. When she was old enough her mother explained the need to keep the powers secret and lifted the spell.
Thus in private when nobody was looking Henry XIV ‘s sister practiced magic. She became very very good because she had a really great gift.
Henry, however, plodded along from day today trying his very best to do magic with no results, not even bad ones. His father kept stalling the Guild but they were turning up the pressure.
One day as Henry was gathering just the right clay for his pots he met an old lady
Who asked him if he would chop some wood for her as she was old and couldn’t do it anymore. Well Henry was tired of digging dirt so he stopped and chopped her a nice pile. You know the old saying,” Bad at magic good at chopping wood”.When he finished and was refusing to take any gold coins for the job there was a sudden bright light and there was an elf. The elf said I saw your kind deed for that little old lady and so I am granting you one wish.
Now Henry came from a magic family and he knew that elf wishes often worked out badly but he blurted out “ I wish to be a very great magician and live forever”,
The elf responded “ As you have asked, so shall it be”
Henry felt a tingling and then he knew he was the greatest magician ever. Suddenly his mind was filled with spells so complicated that no magician had dared try them for years. The first thing he did was to create one hundred perfect pots. Then he told his father they needed to go and visit the Guild. There he performed feats of magic so incredible they are talked about by Magicians (now called Wizards) to this very day. He used no wand, didn’t wiggle a finger but he could levitate the heaviest things, change anything into almost anything else, and just do astounding things.
Every day Henry practiced his magic. He read his grandfathers old books. He knew every spell in the book by heart.
But the spell he wanted most was not there. He wanted a spell to turn clay into gold. Then he never had to look at another pot and his family would be taken care of forever.
One day in an old old book he found an even older spell. It was written in a language so old that Henry could not read it. But there was a notation on the page that the spell could turn anything into gold. There was a warning that unless the spell was said perfectly and pronounced properly dire consequences could take place.
. But one day he decided to try it any way. He said the words just as he thought they should be said. But just before the end Henry sneezed.
There was a flash of light and Henry found himself as an Oak tree with no way to change back. Since he could not die that oak tree lives today. Some say it is Old Knobbley found in an area of woodland on Furze Hills, Mistley, Essex. It is a very old Oak.
At least that ‘s what the tradition says. There is a rumor that Henry staged the oak thing so he could leave family and travel the world. Some say he became bitter and ended up as “ He whose Name can not be spoken”. Others say he just enjoyed his many lives and was now an old man in Neenah writing elf tales.
Who knows where the truth lies.
We do know that Henry’s sister decided that if you can’t beat them join them and turned herself into a man. She took the name Merlin and went to work for King Arthur and you know how that turned out.

####News from Pigeon Falls-The little town in my basement where the trains still run, dragons fly, and life is back to normal. Petrovich is now saying that driblet 187 and driblet 97 may be two visions of the same event. The terror from the sky would have been the General. Charlie wasn’t a child but he was child like. Bush was involved since he wouldn’t let the generals drop an Atomic bomb on Pigeon Falls. He is asking people to read the driblets and decide for themselves.
It would be a real relief for Pigeon Falls if this is the case. They really need some time without any impending doom.
Charlie and Fred are out of jail. The prosecuting attorney arranged the strangest plea bargain. In exchange for having all the charges dropped the two men agreed to pay for all the damages at the Fly Inn and to settle their dispute by each of them getting five feet of the disputed land. Only in a small town do you get great settlements like that.
Petrovich continues to search through the driblets looking for one that has to do with an old woman having a baby. People are hoping he never finds it.

Today's Link-SAHMbles- A little talk with a three year old.
Rough day. The oxygen was down. I felt punk. I visited the link. Did a little work on the next elf story.Played some games. Watched some television and napped. Now I need a breathing treatment.

Wednesday, February 13, 2008

Saturday at the Movies

Saying for the day-In the end, "Captain America" is a fun, low-budget, patriotic, feel-good action flick which works in a Saturday Matinee sort of way.

As I was writing yesterday’s blog I remembered something else from my childhood that kids today don’t have.
We had Saturday afternoon at the movies.
It was a special time just for kids.
Admission was $.10 , one dime.
There were two movies usually with cowboys, a cartoon, a newsreel , and most important of all the serial.
It was the serial that kept you coming back week after week to see if our hero somehow escaped. Over the years I saw “ The Whip”, “The Green Hornet”, “ Captain Marvel”, “The Ghost who Walks”, “Superman” and others I can’t remember. They were blown up, shot, drugged, crushed, poisoned, and yet they always survived. I even put up with musicals ( I hated musicals) to get to that serial.
It all started when I was six years old and my Aunt Ida would walk me from the family Drug Store to the theater. She bought the ticket and got me some popcorn and the adventure began.
I was no longer little Johney Linna I was a cowboy or a detective. I saved the girl but I never, never kissed her. I saw Roy Rogers, Gene Autry, the Cisco Kid and other cowboys whose names I don’t remember.
When it ended Ida was waiting at the door to walk with me back to the Drug Store. Soon I convinced them I could handle my own dime and buy my own popcorn and they left me go alone ( though I am sure for a few weeks somebody followed a block or so behind).
Now kids have television but it isn’t the same.
My cowboys shot the gun out of people’s hands. They never killed anybody. They always stayed away from drinking . They set a good example for the kids. Sure it wasn’t real but we grew up wanting to be good like them.
Those days are gone forever. But I did buy videotapes of some of the great serials and from time to time I play them and go back to those good old days.

####News from Pigeon Falls-The little town in my basement where the trains still run, dragons fly, and life is back to normal. Charlie and Fred are still in jail. Their wives decided not to make bail. Maybe if they sit there for awhile they will decide the fighting isn’t worth it and work things out. In any case they are being charged with “Destruction of Property” and “ Causing a riot” .
Petrovich is back from Green Bay and looking for the driblet that may have something to say about Bonnie McGregor and her yet unborn child or children. He seems very excited by the possibility. Little by little he is showing the world that his hero the Seer Alexis Grengicoff could see the future.
Pigeon Falls still waits with dread for the driblet 187 to begin to come true. This is the one that Petrovich said would happen this year. It has terror coming from the sky. It has screaming and people running around. So far there is no sign that it is or will take place but it is only February.
Now that everything is back to normal the Methodist ladies are planning another big pasty sale. The Church needs to be repainted and they are going to raise some money for the paint. Then the men can do the painting.

Today's Link-Great Old Movies- A review of the book "Great Movie Serials"
Not a great day. My oxygen was down. Not as bad as the other day but down. I fgeel like I'm coming down with something. I hope it isn't what's going around. I did get the website for the Church updated. I visited some links. I napped.
Now I need a breathing treatment.

Tuesday, February 12, 2008

My Childhood Reading

Saying for the day: Books are the quietest and most constant of friends; they are the most accessible and wisest of counselors, and the most patient of teachers. ~Charles W. Eliot

Having read Josie's Blog yesterday it set me to thinking about my own childhood reading. I loved to read and starting in the second grade I was always checking books out of the school library.
I read every one of Frank Baum’s Oz books that the library had. He wrote fourteen counting the Wizard of Oz. I loved his characters.
Then I read all the Tarzan books . I saw myself swinging through trees and riding elephants. I’m lucky I didn’t break an arm or a leg as I tried swinging from a limb of our apple tree.
Tarzan was followed by the Hardy Boys. I loved a good mystery. I bought a lot of those books. I knew every plot by heart.
After that came my scientific period. I believed science was going to save the world. I believed we would have flying cars in a world with no disease. So I read everything I could find that had to do with science. I even read the medical journals my dad brought home from the hospital. He wanted me to become a doctor.
As I think back on it books enriched my childhood in so many ways.
I feel sorry for today’s children who spend so much time watching television they don’t get the thrill of reading .
At least Harry Potter changed that a bit.

####News from Pigeon Falls-The little town in my basement where the trains still run, dragons fly, and life is back to normal. The Hoa’s and the Knights are at it again. They have a long running dispute over their property line. The Knight’s claim that the Hoas have stolen ten feet of their property. The Hoas , of course, say that’s nonsense and point to the surveying markers. But the Knights claim the Hoas moved the markers. Last night at the Fly Inn , after a few drinks, the Charlie Hoa took a swing at Fred Knight. Then a real fight broke out. Two tables got smashed and a mirror. Fred ended up with a black eye. Both men are now in the Iron County Jail as the County Sheriff got called in. Each is blaming the other for starting the fight.
One would think that they could bring in a surveyor and just settle this. But the Hoa house is one foot over into the property that Knight is claiming as their own. The Hoas don’t want to take a chance on the Knights being right.
They have been to Court and the judge has ordered the property to be surveyed by a surveyor acceptable to both parties. There in lies the problem . The surveyor acceptable to the Knights is not acceptable to the Hoas. The surveyor acceptable to the Hoas ( their cousin Al) is not acceptable to the Knights.
The Knights have offered to sell the ten feet to the Hoas at an outrageous price but less than the cost of moving the house. The Hoas have offered to give the Knights seven feet if they would just give up the nonsense. That is not acceptable to the Knights.
Almost certainly when they get out of jail they will be back in court.

Today's Link-Imagination Madness- Another look at scales.
Today was a much better day. My oxygen was back in the low normal range so I went most of the day without the tank. Betty went to Bible Study. I worked on my computer in the morning and in the basement in the afternoon. Some time this week we are going to do our taxes. Now I need a breathing treatment.

Monday, February 11, 2008

My Book

Saying for the day- If there's a book you really want to read but it hasn't been written yet, then you must write it. ~Toni Morrison

The other day when I visited kat’s blog I found this meme, “10 Signs a book has been written by me:” I left here a comment with ten signs off the top of my head but since then I have given it much thought and here is my revised list.
10 Signs a book has been written by me:
1. It is set in a small town
2. There is an infestation of elves ( I like elves)
3. There is a talking dog . ( I like dogs)
4. One character is a wise old man. ( Like me)
5. Another character is a clever kid.
6. It can easily be read by elementary children.
7. It has easily forgotten never quoted dialogue.
8. Only my relatives read it . ( They get free copies)
9. My grandchildren say it is the greatest book ever. ( They lie)
10. It is self published.( Nobody else will do it)

####News from Pigeon Falls-The little town in my basement where the trains still run, dragons fly, and life is back to normal. Old Doc Simpson whent out to visit Russel and Bonnie McGregor this morning with the results of her latest tests. You remember Bonnie Bonnie. She is the fifty two year old lady who is having a baby. Well , according to Doc, everything is going well. There even seems to be a possibility she could have twins. Next month he will send her to Iron Mountain for an ultra sound and they should know.
Here daughter Tracy has promised to give her mother a crib if she has twins. The children are being very supportive. They almost seem to be looking forward to having a little brother or sister or both.
Bonnie is still overwhelmed by it all. She was looking forward to a quiet period of life. She was even thinking of going back to college and then Russel does this to her. It is, of course, Russel’s fault. It has nothing to do with her having thought she was too old to get pregnant and quitting her birth control pills. No God was punishing them because Russel never went to Church.
Pastor Joan has tried to explain to her that the child is a blessing not a punishment but she sees her college possibilities going down the drain along with a loss of planned visits to Roy in Florida as anything but a blessing.
Her seventy five year old mother has offered to come and help out like she did when Roy was born. But Bonnie thinks her mother is too old to be of much help. She might end up having to care for her as well as the baby.
Then there is Petrovich and his cursed driblets. He is saying he thinks there might be a driblet about an older lady in the city of the birds giving birth. He is going through the untranslated driblets looking for it. All this does is scare her. Wonder if she is giving birth to a monster or something.
Poor Bonnie.

Today's Link-Cest La Vie- Our old friend Josie just happens to have a blog about books. Well worth reading.
It was a rough breathing day. I went through two bottles of oxygen. I haven't done tht in a long time. Plus I didn't feel good. So I spent the day on the computer. I visited all my links. I worked on Thursday's elf tale. I played games. Now I need a breathing treatment.

Sunday, February 10, 2008

Sunday with Grandkids

Saying for the day- Haste makes for bad writing and poor blogging.

I have to keep this short this morning. My grandkids slept in the computer room and so I am late getting to the computer. Soon we have to leave for Church.
My grandkids are coming with us. That’s a good news. I love to share what is really important to me with my grandchildren. St. Mark’s is an important part of my life.
I hope Pastor Stein has a good children’s sermon today.

####News from Pigeon Falls-The little town in my basement where the trains still run, dragons fly, and life is just a little strange. Petrovich left for Green Bay last night so he can worship today at the Russian Orthodox Church there . He says he has much to be thankful for.
Pastor Joan is happy to have Last Lutheran back. No more people sleeping in the basement. No more mass meals to feed. Today there will be just the service and the coffee. She is preaching on the temptation of Jesus in the wilderness. One suspects there will be a lot of thankful people attending.
Jack’s Sauna is closed again and shouldn’t be opened till Jack returns in the Spring but in Pigeon Falls you never know for sure what tomorrow will bring.
Tommy UK is the acolyte at Last Lutheran this morning. He looks great in his red robe. He seems to enjoy the duty. Pastor Joan has taken to checking the candles when Tommy UK is acolyting. She doesn’t want any surprises. She still remembers the candle that exploded.
Our Poltergeist and Dragon haven't been seen for a long time. One wonders what has happened to them.
Will the dragon ever return. Where is the poltergeist? Can Tommy UK behave himself or does Last Lutheran have a surprise or two coming? And of course is Tommy UK really the undertaker’s kid?

Today's link-Kirchenmusik ( relating Christianity to aesthetics) A quick look at a hymn.
It was indeed one of those special days. I took the grandkids to St,. Marks. Pastor Sein had a great children's sermon. The children's choir sang. It was very good and they seemed to enjoy. In the afternoon they worked on some school assignments. Pat and Curtis took down our Christmas tree. Then we played canasta. Alex and I won. After they left we played three handed canasta and I won. Not a bad day. Now I need a breathing treatment.

Saturday, February 09, 2008

Yes Virgina there are Elves

Saying for the day:Do not ask an elf for advice, for he will say both yes and no. Old Farland Saying

On Thursday when I told the last elf tale Judie asked if I believed in elves.
Of course I do.
Doesn’t everybody?
How else do you explain all those people who get their wishes granted.
You know and I know that people don’t grant wishes.
Well sometimes parents, lovers, and politicians do but that’s about it. And politicians only grant wishes to people who give them lots and lots of money and help them get elected or who pay for them to go on trips with a beautiful lady ( not their wife) and take lots of secret pictures.
So since people who don’t bribe politicians, whose parents threw them out, who have no lover still get there wish there must be elves. You can’t argue with logic like that.
And I know elves are about four foot tall with curly toes because I saw it in a movie and besides dinky little elves wouldn’t be much help to Santa.
Now I suppose you want to know if I believe in Santa.

####News from Pigeon Falls-The little town in my basement where the trains still run, dragons fly, and life is just a little strange. Pigeon Falls is slowly returning to normal. Nobody got hurt in the tree adventure. Everybody is now back home. Tommy TW has been reunited with Nancy, The big parties are over.
Tommy UK is feeling pretty good about himself. He helped to save the town and gave an unfeeling General his comeuppance. Worked out better than any practical joke he ever played.
Charlie has hung his new medal next to the one from the Special Olympics and he feels very proud. He doesn’t understand what he did but he knows it was important. The Mayor, herself, said so.
There is a big investigation going on at a secret army base in Texas. The trees they were growing in a locked down lab have all vanished. All the wood chips they were growing trees from which were locked in the vault have vanished. Whoever took them had to have high level clearance. So they are sure there is a traitor on the base. Trees just don’t vanish.
Petrovich is also feeling pretty good . It looks like another driblet did apply to Pigeon Falls even though it was written so many years ago.
The only thing left to remind people of the adventure are two army tanks which they have towed off the road. Otherwise life is back to normal.

Today's Link:This is How We Roll- A look at the Rolling Stones.
A rough breathing day but a good day. I played computer games with the grandkids. I watched Alex teach Betty how to play the game she is playing on WII . They went to the show and I visited some of my links. Then I played canasta and won. Now I really need a breathing treatment.

Friday, February 08, 2008

A Teapot Train

Saying for the day-“The gift of fantasy has meant more to me than my talent for absorbing positive knowledge.”-Albert Einstein

Yesterday Betty and I packed up another group of G scale trains for sale on eBay. I have gotten better at leaving go of this part of my life. But yesterday was really hard. We decided to sell one of the three fantasy G scale trains that Betty and I had created some years ago. It was special because we didn’t buy it we built it.
We had gone to a big train show and we saw a fantasy train there. This was a train with a fairy tale theme. It was unlike any train we had ever seen. It was also priced well beyond our budget. So we decided to build our own. Now that was an interesting decision from two people with almost no creative talent. We weren’t artists or
very good with mechanical things. But not having much money and a real desire for a fantasy train we ignored all that.
Out of that came our “Teapot Train”. The engine is being driven by a teapot and all the cars are dishes. It was pure fantasy.
People would stop into our outside layout and the first thing they would say is “ Where did you get that train?” I would say , “ O! Betty made it.”
A number of people offered to buy it but we weren’t selling. I hope they see it on eBay so we get a decent price.
It’s hard to sell something you created. It’s like letting go of one of your children. But what must be must be.
We still have the frog train.

####News from Pigeon Falls-The little town in my basement where the trains still run, dragons fly, and life is just a little strange. Big “No More Trees” party planned for the Fly Inn tonight. Two of the regulars get to tell over and over how they fooled three soldiers from Homeland Security. They used a machine put together by Tommy UK and a script he gave them. They really liked the part about the whole thing being classified and that they were never there. They came away with the original box and left a rather poor replica. But then there wasn’t much light in the tree so you can’t blame the General for being fooled.
Over at Last Lutheran there will also be a celebration. This the official Pigeon Falls No Trees celebration. Mayor Trumble is going to present Charlie with a hero’s medal on behalf of the town. Vicki East has written a sort of a ballad for the occasion. Charlie, of course , is the hero and the trees and the General are the villains.
The General and his soldiers have returned to Homeland Security. Before he left Petrovich explained to him that Tommy UK had arranged to have a live feed of the meeting fed to the three national networks. All three had chosen to air the part where the General called Charlie a retard and threatened to knock Tommy UK’s teeth out while wearing his special dress uniform. Petrovich told the General this would be a good time to resign for health reasons before the army demoted him and assigned him a desk someplace where he won’t be seen.
So life in Pigeon Falls is back to normal.

Today's Link-Sugarfused-A Sign of Spring ?
A good day today. Breathing wasa good. We went shopping. My son and grandsons come tonight. What more can one ask?Now I need a breathing treatment.