Saturday, January 30, 2010

12 Funny Things You Can Do Outside With Shrubs

*** Views today: 3,836 - Thank You!

From Denny: First ran this on my photo blog, Visual Insights, and thought you might enjoy this post too.

These are some whimsical plant sculpture eye candies! How do people think up these things? I wonder how long it takes to create just one of these sculptures?

The "I just woke up from an acid trip and found elephants on my lawn" sculpture:

Harry Potter's mail owl on steroids:

Just what have you been feeding your pet frogs this summer, anyway?

An Eskimo and his pet moose lounging in the summer garden:

The newest summer version of the NBC network's peacock logo:

Those famous dancing bears who created "The Elmo Dance" on Sesame Street:

The biggest escargot in human memory and it looks like he's on wheels. Psst! Don't tell the French... he's trying to make his getaway.

Two egrets in full The Hulk green body makeup desperately trying to blend in while fishing, otherwise known as "doing lunch."

Two pandas who woke up to discover someone dyed their white fur green for a peppermint patty mint commercial:

A Canadian Goose who looks like he just won the Kentucky Derby race and came in first:

And who could ever forget that adorable six foot tall imaginary rabbit named Harvey? You do see him, don't you...?

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Friday, January 29, 2010

Wonderful Serious Quotes About Time

From Denny: New Year's revelry, sudden diets, New Year's resolutions and plenty of funny quotes about the New Year have all been enjoyed the past couple of weeks. Time to settle in and take a look at some mental soul food: intriguing observations and easy advice for living Life to the fullest!


* Today is a smooth white seashell, hold it close and listen to the beauty of the hours. - Anonymous

* Waste no more time arguing what a good man should be, rather be one. - Marcus Aurelius

* Better late than never, but never late is better. - Anonymous

* This is no time for ease and comfort. It is the time to dare and endure. - Winston Churchill

* Time heals what reason cannot. - Seneca

* This time, like all times, is a very good one, if we but know what to do with it. - Ralph Waldo Emerson

* Time is but the stream I go a-fishing in. - Henry David Thoreau (American Essayist, Poet and Philosopher, 1817-1862)

* Time is at once the most valuable and the most perishable of all our possessions. - John Randolph

* Time is equal to life; therefore, waste your time and waste of your life, or master your time and master your life. - Alan Lakein

* Time is free, but it's priceless. You can't own it, but you can use it. You can't keep it, but you can send it. Once you've lost it, you can never get it back. - Harvey Mackay

* We say we waste time, but that is impossible. We waste ourselves. - Alice Bloch

* To achieve great things, two things are needed; a plan, and not quite enough time. - Leonard Bernstein


* Time is the cruelest teacher; first she gives the test then teaches the lesson. – Anonymous

* Often times I have hated in self-defense; if I were stronger I would not have used such a weapon. - Kahlil Gibran (Lebanese born American philosophical Essayist, Novelist and Poet. 1883-1931)

* Time is like money, the less we have of it to spare the further we make it go. - Josh Billings

* The time is always right to do what is right. – Martin Luther King, Jr. (American Baptist Minister and Civil-Rights Leader. 1929-1968)

* There is only one you for all time. Fearlessly be yourself. - Anthony Rapp, actor

* In everyone's life, at some time, our inner fire goes out. It is then burst into flame by an encounter with another human being. We should all be thankful for those people who rekindle the inner spirit. - Albert Schweitzer (German medical Missionary, Theologian, Musician and Philosopher. 1952 Nobel Peace Prize, 1875-1965)

* Never let yesterday use up today. - Richard H. Nelson

* If you get up one more time than you fall you will make it through. - Chinese Proverbs

* Defer no time, delays have dangerous ends. - William Shakespeare

* Time is the justice that examines all offenders. - William Shakespeare

* Time is too slow for those who wait, too swift for those who fear, too long for those who grieve, too short for those who rejoice, but for those who love, time is eternity. - Henry Van Dyke (American short-story Writer, Poet and Essayist, 1852-1933)

* No army can withstand the strength of an idea whose time has come. - Victor Hugo

* Nobody sees a flower - really - it is so small it takes time - we haven't time - and to see takes time, like to have a friend takes time. - Georgia O'Keefe

* Nothing is a waste of time if you use the experience wisely. - Auguste Rodin

* Once you have mastered time, you will understand how true it is that most people overestimate what they can accomplish in a year - and underestimate what they can achieve in a decade! - Anthony Robbins

* One problem with gazing too frequently into the past is that we may turn around to find the future has run out on us. - Michael Cibenko

* One realizes the full importance of time only when there is little left of it. Every man's greatest capital asset is his unexpired years of productive life. - P. W. Litchfield

* Ordinary people think merely of spending time. Great people think of using it. - Anonymous

* Realize that now, in this moment of time, you are creating. You are creating your next moment. That is what's real. - Sara Paddison

* Remember, you can earn more money, but when time is spent is gone forever. - Zig Ziglar

* Time is our most valuable asset, yet we tend to waste it, kill it and spend it rather than invest it. - Jim Rohn

* Time is the most precious element of human existence. The successful person knows how to put energy into time and how to draw success from time. - Denis Waitley

* Time is the most valuable thing a man can spend. - Laertius Diogenes

Photo by muha... @ flickr

* Time is the substance from which I am made. Time is a river which carries me along, but I am the river; it is a tiger that devours me, but I am the tiger; it is a fire that consumes me, but I am the fire. - Jorge Luis Borges

* Time is the wisest counselor. - Pericles

* Time ripens all things, no man is born wise. - Miguel de Cervantes

* Those who make the worse use of their time are the first to complain of its shortness. - Jean De La Bruyere

* Time and health are two precious assets that we don't recognize and appreciate until they have been depleted. - Denis Waitley

* Time and memory are true artists; they remold reality nearer to the heart's desire. - John Dewey

* Time and money spent in helping men to do more for themselves is far better than mere giving. - Henry Ford

* Time flies. It's up to you to be the navigator. - Robert Orben

* Time heals what reason cannot. - Seneca

* Time is a circus, always packing up and moving away. - Ben Hecht

* Marcus Aurelius Antoninus: Time Quotations
Time is a sort of river of passing events, and strong as its current; no sooner is a thing brought to sight than it is swept by and another takes its place, and this too will be swept away.

Photo by Igor Zenin

* We always have time enough if we will but use it aright. - Goethe

* We are too busy mopping the floor to turn off the faucet. - Anonymous

* We have only this moment, sparkling like a star in our hand - and melting like a snowflake. - Marie B. Ray

* We must use time as a tool, not as a couch. - John F. Kennedy

* Yesterday is a canceled check; tomorrow is a promissory note; today is the only cash you have - so spend it wisely. - Kay Lyons

* What would be the use of immortality to a person who cannot use well a half an hour. - Ralph Waldo Emerson

* When the time is right, you just got to do it. - Jack Simplot

* Today, be aware of how you are spending your 1,440 beautiful moments, and spend them wisely. - Anonymous

* Until you value yourself, you will not value your time. Until you value your time, you will not do anything with it. - M. Scott Peck

* You can't change the past, but you can ruin the present by worrying about the future. - Anonymous

* Life is all about timing... the unreachable becomes reachable, the unavailable become available, the unattainable... attainable. Have the patience, wait it out. It's all about timing. - Stacey Charter

Photo by jillallyn @ flickr

* We all have our time machines. Some take us back, they're called memories. Some take us forward, they're called dreams. - Jeremy Irons

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Thursday, January 28, 2010

67 Charities to Donate: Helping Haiti Heal

From Denny: The outpouring of donations worldwide for the relief of suffering in Haiti following a 7.0 devastating earthquake is incredible. The following are a list of 67 well-known established charities to which you can donate safely.

The Mobile Giving Foundation has received over $30 million in text pledges from cell phone donors the past two weeks. Even the Pew Research Center was well impressed and threw out some statistics:

14% donated by text message
12% donated by phone
23% donated via the web
5% donated via email
39% donated in person via a church or other group

Here's something I doubt any of us thought about when we donated by text message or phone: how long will it take for the phone companies to send out that donation? Turns out it can take from 30, even up to 60 days to transfer customers' contributions, which is then added to the mobile phone bills.

The biggest carriers like Verizon Wireless, AT&T, Sprint and T-Mobile have all decided to expedite those donations.

Here's each company's status:

Verizon Wireless:
Last Friday, 22 January, they transferred $2.98 million. Today, 28 January, they transferred $4.84 million. Jeffrey Nelson declared the campaign "the largest outpouring of charitable support by texting in history — by far. In all of 2009, all mobile giving (via texting) to all charities totaled just under $4 million for the year."

AT&T: Donations are up to $10 million. The company says they will "advance payment of verified texted donations" to the Red Cross.

Sprint: Donations so far are $3.1 million. By Friday, 29 January, they will advance 80% of the donations with the remaining 20% placed into the usual 30 to 90 day settlement cycle.

T-Mobile: They are working hard to expedite on a weekly basis.

Visit for breaking news, world news, and news about the economy

Relief Agencies where to donate:

Action Against Hunger 877-777-1420
Agape Flights 941-584-8078
American Red Cross 800-733-2767
American Refugee Committee 800-875-7060
American Jewish Joint Distribution Committee 212-687-6200
American Jewish World Service 212-792-2900
AmeriCares 800-486-4357
Beyond Borders 866-424-8403
B'nai B'rith International 202-857-6600
CARE 800-521-2273

Catholic Relief Services 800-736-3467
Childcare Worldwide 800-553-2328
Church World Services 800-297-1516
Clinton Foundation 501-748-0471
Concern Worldwide 212-557-8000
Convoy of Hope 417-823-8998
Cross International 800-391-8545
CRUDEM Foundation 413-642-0450

Direct Relief International 805-964-4767
Doctors Without Borders 888-392-0392
Episcopal Relief and Development 800-334-7626
Feed My Starving Children 763-504-2919
Food for the Poor 800-427-9104
Friends of WFP (World Food Program) 866-929-1694
Friends of the Orphans 312-386-7499
Habitat for Humanity 800-422-4828
Haiti Children 877-424-8454
Haiti Foundation Against Poverty

Haiti Marycare 203-675-4770
Haitian Health Foundation 860-886-4357
Healing Hands for Haiti 651-769-5846
Hope for Haiti 239-434-7183
Hope for Haiti Now 877-99-HAITI
International Child Care 800-722-4453
International Medical Corps 800-481-4462
International Rescue Committee 877-733-8433
International Relief Teams 619-284-7979
Islamic Relief USA 888-479-4968

Lions Club International Foundation 630-203-3836
Lutheran World Relief 800-597-5972
Medical Benevolence Foundation 800-547-7627
Medical Teams International 800-959-4325
Meds and Food for Kids 314-420-1634
Mennonite Central Committee 888-563-4676
Mercy Corps 888-256-1900
Nazarene Compassionate Ministries 800-306-9950
New Life for Haiti 815-436-7633
Operation Blessing 800-730-2537

Operation USA 800-678-7255
Oxfam 800-776-9326
Partners in Health 617-432-5298
RHEMA International 248-652-9894
Rural Haiti Project 347-405-5552
Salesian Missions 888-608-2327
The Salvation Army 800-725-2769
Samaritan's Purse 828-262-1980
Save the Children 800-728-3843

UN Central Emergency Response Fund
UNICEF 800-367-5437
United Methodist Committee on Relief 800-554-8583
World Concern 800-755-5022
World Hope International 888-466-4673
World Relief 800-535-5433
World Vision 888-511-6548

Text to donate:

Text/ Number/ Giving campaign/ Amount

"HAITI" 90999 American Red Cross $10
"QUAKE" 20222 Clinton Bush Haiti Fund $10
"GIVE" 25383 MTV telethon $10
"HAITI" 25383 International Rescue Committee $5
"HAITI" 85944 International Medical Corps $10

"YELE" 501501 Yele Haiti foundation $5
"HAITI" 52000 The Salvation Army $10
"HOPE10" or "UNICEF" 20222 UNICEF $10
"HABITAT" 25383 Habitat for Humanity $10
"OXFAM" 25383 Oxfam America, Inc $10

"HAITI" 40579 National Religious Broadcasters $10
"SAVE" or "SAFE" 20222 Save the Children Federation $10
"GIVE" or "WORLD" 20222 World Vision, Inc $10
"CARE" 24383 CARE (Cooperative for Assistance and Relief Everywhere, Inc) $10
"AJWS" 25383 American Jewish World Service $10

*** THANK YOU FOR YOUR DONATIONS - even the smallest amount delivers a huge impact!

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Monday, January 25, 2010

Let Your Silent Voice Sing

Our writing voice is heard in the silence.

Silent Voice Singing

I write in silence as I speak
Words noisy tap, stride the screen
Flying out into virtual air for All
To find, think, and new minds see

There is a season for everything
Words once spoken
Words once thought
New voices, new words
Rise to sing the New Year.

Denny Lyon
Copyright 25 January 2010
All Rights Reserved


* For last year's words belong to last year's language and next year's words await another voice. - T.S. Eliot

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*** Come by for a visit and check out my other blogs:

The Social Poets - news, politics
The Soul Calendar - science, astronomy, psychology
Visual Insights - photos, art, music
Beautiful Illustrated Quotations - spiritual quotes, philosophy
Best Spiritual Posts
Poems From A Spiritual Heart - poetry
The Healing Waters - health news
Dennys People Watching - people in the news
Dennys Food and Recipes
Dennys Funny Quotes - humor

Sunday, January 24, 2010

Mission of Hope Run by American in Haiti

From Denny: A few years before the disaster struck in Haiti, American Brad Johnson decided to move there and help the people in his parents' ongoing Christian mission to Haiti. He was in a unique position to help after the earthquake as he already had an established school, an orphanage and a medical clinic operating, along with plenty of supplies. His mission is just outside of Port-au-Prince. He is busy distributing supplies to survivors and has been within hours of when the disaster hit.

Here is the website: Mission of Hope in Haiti

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Wednesday, January 20, 2010

2 Inspiring Haiti Stories: Woman Pulled From Wreckage, New Baby Born on USS Carl Vinson

From Denny: Finally, a happier story of triumph as a woman named Jeanette was pulled from the damaged building in strong health with minor injuries and dehydration after six days pinned down. This is an awesome story of her faith in God and her determination to survive to be reunited with her husband.

Visit for breaking news, world news, and news about the economy

Of course, with any horrific disaster it helps to focus upon the positive. Nothing is more positive and heart-warming than the birthing of a new life. How fortunate this young mother was to have an entire USS Navy ship at her beck and call. The crew is all smiles to be a part of something so life affirming. Can you guess the new baby boy's name? Yes, it's Vinson, in honor of the ship and crew.

The ship is about 17 miles out from the shore of Haiti. They have been taking in any and all injured discovered on the streets of Haiti by U.S. troops. They were the closest American ship in the area and the first to arrive after the disaster.

Can you imagine being pregnant and deep in labor right after an earthquake? The things that had to be going through her mind as she was getting ready to birth her baby. Luck had it she was found by American troops who quickly transported her to the ship to deliver her baby safely.

Visit for breaking news, world news, and news about the economy

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Sunday, January 17, 2010

Funny Music Video of How Americans Sound to Foreigners

From Denny: This is so funny, mainly because the lampooning Italians have us accurately nailed to the wall. If you have ever wondered what Americans sound like to others who speak different languages you will laugh at this. An Italian singer decided to write a song with nothing but gibberish to sound like it was intelligible English. Of course, the funniest thing of all is that often today's music sounds unintelligible to us as well! :) But hey, pop music is really all about the beat that makes you want to dance and have fun! ("That's my story and I'm sticking to it!" as the saying goes in America...) I guess Americans can remind themselves of the other saying: "Imitation is the greatest form of flattery." Anyway, you look at it, this little musical spoof is great fun!

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Wednesday, January 13, 2010

5 Funny Quotes About Time

Time? Where are you, you little rascal? I'll go shoot me some Time to keep!

From Denny: Enjoy these funny quotes as a sampling of today's Mind Candy! For more grins at funny photos and quotes, go here: Funny Quotes About Time - Cheeky Quote Day! 13 Jan 2010


* When I give a lecture, I accept that people look at their watches, but what I do not tolerate is when they look at it and raise it to their ear to find out if it stopped. - Marcel Achard

* Time will explain it all. He is a talker, and needs no questioning before he speaks. - Euripides

* I would I could stand on a busy corner, hat in hand, and beg people to throw me all their wasted hours. - Bernard Berenson

* I've been on a calendar, but never on time. - Marilyn Monroe

* Time and Tide wait for no man, but time always stands still for a woman of thirty. -Robert Frost

: "Play it again, Sam!"

*** To enjoy the full post, full of funny photos too:
Funny Quotes About Time - Cheeky Quote Day! 13 Jan 2010

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Saturday, January 9, 2010

Funny New Years Resolutions Cartoons

From Denny: Made your lame New Years resolution yet? If you are stumped for a good idea, check out what the editorial cartoonists are suggesting. They never disappoint. Which one is your favorite?

*** Check out the latest cartoons where the embed codes are active :)

Best New Years Cartoons 2010

New Years: Funny Quotes, Resolutions Tips, Poems

Funny New Years Resolutions

*** Also: Funny Editorial Cartoons 9 Jan 2010
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Wednesday, January 6, 2010

4 of 10 Top Quotes of 2009

*** Thought you might enjoy a teaser of Cheeky Quote Day! This is an excerpt from the full post over at The Social Poets:

Political Cats!From Denny: Some of the cheekiest - most irreverent or most odd - quotes were uttered in the year of 2009 in America. There are times when I wonder if there are regions of the country with lead in the water, sounding as bizarre as ancient Rome did right before they destroyed their empire. The ancient Romans poisoned themselves with lead in their wine, unknowingly, that also sterilized them, dropping the population of the ruling aristocracy. Their increasing bizarre behavior is well documented historically and, of course, Hollywood celebrated it with many a movie. After all, villains are great story grist! :)

I knew there was a verbal bridge somewhere in here... more like a teetering wood suspension bridge in the Amazon... 2009 has been a very bizarre year for quotes from politicians in particular and a few celebrities too. Notice that Tiger Woods is noticeably silent. Maybe he's saving his quotes for 2010. Stay tuned...

1. "Do ya think?" he's: Holding Back

"He deserves my silence."

George W. Bush, former President, refusing to criticize President Barack Obama during a speech in March, his first address since leaving office. Yet the Republicans didn't waste any time later in the year, propelling Bush out in front to take the fire for complaining about Obama's job performance and handling of terrorism issues.

Hmmmm... yes, Obama still deserves his silence. The man was a hack in the Presidency so what real advice could he offer? The majority of the time he never watched nor read the news, depending upon filtered information from jealous coveting-the-power aides like Rove.

Photo by Ross D. Franklin/Getty

2. Obama's Persistent Peanut Gallery (OPPG) throwing rotten tomatoes:

"The America I know and love is not one in which my parents or my baby with Down syndrome will have to stand in front of Obama's 'death panel' so his bureaucrats can decide, based on a subjective judgment of their 'level of productivity in society,' whether they are worthy of health care."

Sarah Palin, former Alaska governor, rambling all over the place on her Facebook page, whiner lying about a provision of the proposed health care bill that called for Medicare to reimburse doctors for counseling patients on end-of-life-care issues such as living wills and hospice availability. Somehow, she had reading comprehension problems and started screaming death panels are in the bill when clearly they are not.

3. Perilously Close on the Heels of Republican Retreads

"I'm happy to get good ideas from across the political spectrum, from Democrats and Republicans. What I won't do is return to the failed theories of the last eight years that got us into this fix in the first place, because those theories have been tested, and they have failed. And that's what part of the election in November was all about."

President Obama, during his first official press conference, on 9 Feb 2009. What's annoying is when you follow such a disastrous act like Bush and Cheney who basically broke several world governments, is that you are forced to continue some of the same policies until you can stabilize a region, beginning new policies to repair all the damage.

So it goes in American politics for decades: Republicans like to blow up the world and Democrats come in behind them to clean up their mess. Then the public gets angry it takes too long to clean up the mess and choose Republicans again, thinking the economy will pick up. There is a real disconnect of the American voter with an understanding of just how long it takes to repair a mess and then gin up the economy.

4. The Commies Are Coming! The Commies Are Coming! Stay safe; hide under your school desk when the nukes hit. (Now there's a plan.)

"I don't want this country turning into Russia, turning into a socialized country. My question for you is, What are you going to do to restore this country back to what our founders created according to the Constitution?"

Katy Abram, a Pennsylvania mother, speaking at a health care town hall moderated by Senator Arlen Specter in August in Lebanon, Pennsylvania. If this woman knew what she was talking about, understood economics, international diplomacy and common sense, and actually cared if women got equal pay for the same job, well, she would never have voted Republican in the first place. These guys are the ones who sent our country careening out of control financially for decades starting with President Reagan and his paranoid Star Wars concept.

*** For the full post and quotes 5 - 10: including Michael Jackson, Hillary Clinton, Berlusconi, David Letterman and con man Madoff, visit The Social Poets, go here.

*** THANKS for visiting!

Tuesday, January 5, 2010

How Do Dreamers Create Our World?

Photo by nattu @ flickr

From Denny: What does the future bring in your thoughts? Are your thoughts full of fear, anger, resentment? Are your thoughts full of hope, inspiration and dreams? Our thoughts upon which we focus daily end up determining our level of happiness and success in Life. You would be surprised how powerful our thoughts can be. Dream. Dream of the best for yourself and those around you. Dream a powerful dream that becomes reality.


* The future belongs to those who believe in the beauty of their dreams. - Eleanor Roosevelt

Monday, January 4, 2010

How Funny! 10 Banned Overused Buzzwords of 2009

From Denny: That's the thing about buzzwords. First they are cool because they are a clever reference or manipulation of other words and then everyone starts using them. Our minds so crave something clever and unusual.

Then those same cool words get overused and suddenly people turn on them, like a rabid dog bites its once loved owner, declaring them now uncool. I can only imagine the confusion of someone trying to learn the English language. The occasional idioms are one thing but popular current language is a real mind-bender at times. I'm a native speaker and even I scratch my head sometimes, going, "Huh?" :)

Well, lucky you, these words and phrases are on their way "out" of our everyday language for 2010. Of course, who in the heck declares what's "in" or "out" anyway? Some fairy godmother waving her wand over the globe? Well, on to new magic in the New Year!

Photo by Betsie Van Der Meer/Corbis

1. Sexting = sex + texting - Parents are horrified, kids snicker, while someone gets slapped with pornography charges for dirty dialing on the phone. Not too funny when the law comes calling and empties your wallet for the deed.

Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid photo by Nicholas Kamm/Getty

2. Public option - Health care reform bill reference to a government run health care plan that is actually affordable. The popular idea is it would compete with private plans to force the insurance companies to keep their prices in line "or else" the public has a cheaper alternative with the government. Works for me. Seems to me the only ones that want to ban this phrase are the insurance companies because it means less billion dollar profits to the CEOs.

3. Autotune - Refers to a software program to correct imperfect musical pitch. After rapper T-pain made good use of it the late night comedians picked it up and applied it weirdly to news clips. T-pain released his own iPhone app that has been downloaded to the tune of 10,000 a day. Bet he doesn't care if he becomes a cliche with that kind of money rolling in daily at $3 an app. Whew!

Photo by Christy Bowe/Corbis

4. Wise Latina - Came from Sotomayor's first Latina nomination to the Supreme Court. This is the much maligned and repeated line from her 2001 speech the racists tried to use against her: "I would hope that a wise Latina woman with the richness of her experiences would more often than not reach a better conclusion than a white male who hasn't lived that life." What's funny is that her term of a wise Latina became a rallying cry in the Hispanic community where people proudly displayed it on T-shirts, coffee mugs, baby bibs and banners. Isn't it great fun when the mean-spirited people get backfired?! :)

Republican Senator Grassley photo by Alex Wong/Getty

5. Death Panel - Senator Grassley from Iowa declared for sure that Obama's health care plan would "pull the plug on Grandma." This is the same guy who was crafting the bill, had read it supposedly and yet still claimed this to be true. The 1,000 page bill had no mention of committees that were set up to execute the infirm or the old. Dementia or just plain stupidity here?

Alaska's weird Governor Palin shrieked from a Facebook message: "The America I know and love is not one in which my parents or my baby with Down Syndrome will have to stand in front of Obama's 'death panel' so his bureaucrats can decide, based on a subjective judgment of their "level of productivity in society, whether they are worthy of health care. Such a system is downright evil." Uh... Governor, can you read?

6. Birther - Speaking of shriekers, Orly Tait from California, peddled a huge fat lie that Obama was secretly smuggled into Hawaii just after his birth so he could qualify as an American citizen. What drugs was this guy on? This stuff is so incredulous you can't make it up: he did. Now what mother who just gave birth is going to get on a plane with a day old baby and fly all the way from Kenya to America? Are you nuts or just not female? Worse, who is actually brain dead enough to believe any of this warped nonsense?

Obama was born in Hawaii, complete with birth certificate and birth announcement in a local paper. Yet the Birther crowd still demands to see the original document. Yeah, like I'm going to show a bunch of crazed folks my social security number and other personal data as a sitting President. Yeah, right.

Photo by Juice Images/Corbis

7. Opposite Marriage - It's supposed to mean a marriage between a man and a woman but Miss California, Carrie Prejean, bungled her rambling answer to a question and it fumbled into this phrase. The question: Do you think gay marriage should be legalized in every state of the union? Answer: "Um, we live in a land that you can choose same-sex marriage or opposite marriage and, you know what, in my country and, in my family, I think that I believe that a marriage should be between a man and a woman. No offense to anybody out there." As you can guess there were some angry folks and a shouting match.

Michael Jackson Photo by Paul Richards/Getty

8. Summer of Death - A number of high profile notable celebrities passed away this year: singer Michael Jackson, actor Ed McMahon, actress Farrah Fawcett, newsman Walter Cronkite, actor and dancer Patrick Swayze, John Hughes and even beloved Taco Bell spokes-puppy Gidget the Chihuahua. Most of the deaths occurred from May to August of 2009.

From the New York Times: "No more celebrities had died than in past summers ... this summer could come to be known as the summer when baby boomers began to turn to the obituary pages first, to face not merely their own mortality or ponder their legacies, but to witness the passing of legends who defined them as a tribe, bequeathing through music, culture, news and politics a kind of generational badge that has begun to fray."

Photo by Pete Souza/White House/Getty

9. Beer Summit - Prez Obama met with black Harvard professor Henry Gates, Jr. and white police officer Sergeant James Crowley to defuse a racial incident between them. The local police badly handled a call from one of Gates' neighbors who thought someone was breaking into Gates' house: it was Gates fumbling with his keys at the door.

The police got angry when Gates got angry and the whole thing blew up out of proportion, taking on racial overtones and a national controversy. Obama made public comments about the incident when he really should have remained above the fray.

Police profiling of minorities is a sticking point in America even after electing the first African-American President. Obama successfully sat down with the men over shared beers to lay to rest the overblown sensitive issue. Of course, the photographers had never seen an American President do such a thing and went wild in the Rose Garden snapping a piece of history.

Photo by Simon Marcus/Corbis

10. Green Shoots - What's the first thing you think of when you hear this phrase? Yep! Spring time and vibrant green plant shoots rocketing out of the ground at record pace. Turns out this phrase has been around about twenty years now. It really caught on this year when Federal Reserve chairman Ben Bernanke, in a 60 Minutes interview, used it to describe his optimism for this year's economic growth.

Of course, since then depressed and disappointed analysts - and desperate journalists - jumped on the bandwagon and wore it out trying to use it as a soothing effect on their audiences. From Slate's Daniel Gross: "Economists are now walking around, eyes fixed on the ground like French rustics hunting for truffles, searching for verdant signs of growth."

I have to admit it was truly bizarre to hear modern day crusty personality business journalists using the phrase "verdant signs of growth" like they had just popped in from a 19th century luncheon with Sherlock Holmes at a poetry slam. I'll have to keep my eye on these guys in 2010 just to make sure they aren't suffering from buzzword dementia... :)

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Sunday, January 3, 2010

How Are Our Lives Like An Open Book?

Photo by Vincent Damiano @ flickr

From Denny: Though it can be argued that calendars chase after the illusion of Time as linear and tangible, humanity still makes the vain attempt year after year. Perhaps it feeds our fantasies of mastering our Universe? Perhaps it soothes our collective fears in an uncertain world? Perhaps calendars assist us in grappling with the serious issues we face in this place called Life?

One practice is undeniably true: we can always begin our lives anew. When we fail ourselves or others, we can regroup, rethink our approach, choose another path in Life and being the slow tentative dance forward into the Unknown.


* We will open the book. Its pages are blank. We are going to put words on them ourselves. The book is called Opportunity and its first chapter is New Year's Day. - Edith Lovejoy Pierce

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Saturday, January 2, 2010

Editorial Cartoons 2 Jan 2010

From Denny: Here's a sampling of editorial cartoonists' opinions, love 'em or hate 'em, as to the news and the year and decade that was and what the New Year might bring us:

A short video of a few of the New Years fireworks worldwide:

Visit for breaking news, world news, and news about the economy

It's the big ugly fact that if government does not spend the economy will crash down upon our ears. As it is, the banks are still not lending much for car loans and demanding 20% down for houses, creating a shaky economy:

*** For the full post, full of more grinners, over at The Social Poets, go here.

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