Saturday, December 31, 2011

Blessed New Year

I hope all of you have a Blessed New Year!

Every year is a chance to do better.

To be an ideal guest, stay at home.  Edgar Watson Howe

Youth is when you're allowed to stay up late on New Year's Eve. Middle age is when you're forced to. Bill Vaughan

I know. I'm lazy. But I made myself a New Years resolution that I would write myself something really special. Which means I have 'til December, right?  Catherine O'Hara

If you are young and you drink a great deal it will spoil your health, slow your mind, make you fat - in other words, turn you into an adult.  P. J. O'Rourke

Deep breaths are very helpful at shallow parties.  Barbara Walters

To kick start my New Year,  I took an IQ and the results were negative.

New Year's Eve, where auld acquaintance be forgot. Unless, of course, those tests come back positive. - Jay Leno

On New Year's Eve, Marilyn stood up in the local pub and said that it was time to get ready. At the stroke of midnight, she wanted every husband to be standing next to the one person who made his life worth living. As the clock struck - the bartender was almost crushed to death.

When I thought about the evils of drinking in the New Year, I gave up thinking.

A new year is unfolding like a blossom with petals curled tightly concealing the beauty within. 

"Many people look forward to the New Year for a new start on old habits."

"I'm a little bit older, a little bit wiser, a little bit rounder, but still none the wiser." -- Robert Paul

Thursday, December 29, 2011

New Year Traditions

I have a few New Year's Traditions that I follow:

1.  Spend New Year's Eve at home with my L(ovely)W(ife).
2.  To be asleep when the New Year comes in.
3.  To not make any New Year's resolutions.

These traditions work well for me, though they might not be as good for others.

New Year's is a harmless annual institution, of no particular use to anybody save as a scapegoat for promiscuous drunks, and friendly calls and humbug resolutions. Mark Twain

New Year's Resolution: To tolerate fools more gladly, provided this does not encourage them to take up more of my time. James Agate

Drop the last year into the silent limbo of the past. Let it go, for it was imperfect, and thank God that it can go. Brooks Atkinson

An optimist stays up until midnight to see the New Year in. A pessimist stays up to make sure the old year leaves. Bill Vaughan

New Year's Day… now is the accepted time to make your regular annual good resolutions. Next week you can begin paving hell with them as usual. Mark Twain

Good resolutions are simply checks that men draw on a bank where they have no account. Oscar Wilde

YEAR, n.   A period of three hundred and sixty-five disappointments.  (DD- Ambrose Bierce)

Wednesday, December 28, 2011

Most Admired

What man that you have heard or read about, living today in any part of the world, do you admire most? And who is your second choice?


Barack Obama 

George W. Bush 

Bill Clinton 

Rev. Billy Graham 

Warren Buffett 

Newt Gingrich 

Donald Trump 

Pope Benedict XVI 

Bill Gates 

Thomas Monson 

11     Tim Tebow

12     The Dalai Lama 

13     Mitt Romney 

14     Rush Limbaugh 

Results are based on telephone interviews conducted December 15-18, 2011 with a random sample of –1,019—adults, aged 18+, living in all 50 U.S. states and the District of Columbia

Thomas Spencer Monson (born August 21, 1927) is an American religious leader and author, and the 16th and current President of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints (for those of us who didn't know who he was).

My list would be very different.  

1.  My Wife  - She has put up with me for many years and raised great children.
2.  My mother - She raised 3 very young children on her own & is very generous.
3/4.  My son & daughter - They have turned to be great people & parents. 
5/6.  My son-in-law & daughter-in-law - Great parents & people/
(OK I know they are not all men!)

Then I might add the Pope, Dalai Lama, Billy Graham, and Tim Tebow not necessarily in that order.

Barrack Obama, Bill Clinton & Donald Trump would not be anywhere on the radar screen!

Actually at the bottom of the poll is:



None/No opinion 

A hero is someone we can admire without apology.  Kitty Kelley

A man likes his wife to be just clever enough to appreciate his cleverness, and just stupid enough to admire it.  Israel Zangwill

Among those whom I like or admire, I can find no common denominator, but among those whom I love, I can: all of them make me laugh.  W. H. Auden

Animals do not admire each other. A horse does not admire its companion.  Thomas Mann

ADMIRATION, n. Our polite recognition of another's resemblance to ourselves. (DD)

Tuesday, December 27, 2011

What kind of a world?

What kind of a world do we live in?

Two stories that occurred recently bring this ti the front:

A franking commission spokesman told the Washington Examiner that members of Congress indeed cannot wish constituents "Merry Christmas" in any official mailing.
"Currently, incidental use of the phrase Happy Holidays is permissible, but Merry Christmas is not," said Salley Wood.
The paper notes that senators can say things congressmen cannot because they are governed by different regulations.
According to Senate franking regulations, "Senators may not use the frank to mail holiday cards. However, senators may use officially related funds to mail holiday cards to constituents. Holiday cards to friends should be sent with personal funds, not using Senate facilities."  Fox News

WASHINGTON, Dec 23(Reuters) - A federal judge on Friday barred Arizona Sheriff Joe Arpaio from detaining people simply for being in the country illegally, in a ruling that faulted the local lawman for enforcing federal immigration law.
The sheriff already has faced rebukes from federal agencies over his controversial efforts to crack down on illegal immigration.  Chicago Tribune

Rulings that Happy Holidays is sanctioned but not Merry Christmas!  The "holidays" are theoretically here because of CHRISTMAS, the birth of a Savior.

A sheriff being reprimanded for carrying out a law.

Separate subject: Franking.
I believe that Congressmen (or Congresspeople for you overly politically correct out there) should be able to Frank any letters that they actually sign! No fake signature stamps, no aides signing, etc.
That way we would get info we absolutely need not hearing how our representatives are spending ojur money!

Sunday, December 25, 2011

Merry Christmas!

Christmas is about LOVE & FAMILY. This slideshow is from Christmas 2010 when we had a Birthday party for my mother.  I hope you enjoy it!

 Luke 2:1 Now in those days a decree went out from Caesar Augustus, that a census be taken of all the inhabited earth. 2 This was the first census taken while Quirinius was governor of Syria. 3 And everyone was on his way to register for the census, each to his own city. 4 Joseph also went up from Galilee, from the city of Nazareth, to Judea, to the city of David which is called Bethlehem, because he was of the house and family of David, 5 in order to register along with Mary, who was engaged to him, and was with child. 6 While they were there, the days were completed for her to give birth. 7 And she gave birth to her firstborn son; and she wrapped Him in cloths, and laid Him in a manger, because there was no room for them in the inn.
 8 In the same region there were some shepherds staying out in the fields and keeping watch over their flock by night. 9 And an angel of the Lord suddenly stood before them, and the glory of the Lord shone around them; and they were terribly frightened. 10 But the angel said to them, “Do not be afraid; for behold, I bring you good news of great joy which will be for all the people; 11 for today in the city of David there has been born for you a Savior, who is Christ the Lord. 12 This will be a sign for you: you will find a baby wrapped in cloths and lying in a manger.” 13 And suddenly there appeared with the angel a multitude of the heavenly host praising God and saying,
 14 “Glory to God in the highest,  And on earth peace among men with whom He is pleased.”
 15 When the angels had gone away from them into heaven, the shepherds began saying to one another, “Let us go straight to Bethlehem then, and see this thing that has happened which the Lord has made known to us.” 16 So they came in a hurry and found their way to Mary and Joseph, and the baby as He lay in the manger. 17 When they had seen this, they made known the statement which had been told them about this Child. 18 And all who heard it wondered at the things which were told them by the shepherds. 19 But Mary treasured all these things, pondering them in her heart. 20 The shepherds went back, glorifying and praising God for all that they had heard and seen, just as had been told them. 

John 3:16 “For God so loved the world, that He gave His only begotten Son, that whoever believes in Him shall not perish, but have eternal life. 17 For God did not send the Son into the world to judge the world, but that the world might be saved through Him. 18 He who believes in Him is not judged; he who does not believe has been judged already, because he has not believed in the name of the only begotten Son of God. 19 This is the judgment, that the Light has come into the world, and men loved the darkness rather than the Light, for their deeds were evil. 20 For everyone who does evil hates the Light, and does not come to the Light for fear that his deeds will be exposed. 21 But he who practices the truth comes to the Light, so that his deeds may be manifested as having been wrought in God.”
(New American Standard Bible)

Friday, December 23, 2011

Estimated Tax

Since I am retired, I have to pay estimated tax every quarter.  My state  (IL) basically taxes every dollar we make and they increased the tax rate by 67% this year.  We get a $2000 deduction but that is basically all. Interesting question, how can anyone live on $2000 per year?

Every year our income increases in the last quarter and not in a predictable fashion, so usually I try to pay the amount that would be due if the amount we made in that quarter + previous quarters was the total,  If you do that usually you have to fill out a 2210 form; where you input the total income up to the quarters and pay more or the same amount that would be due.  The form is horrible to fill out (of course, I have the computer do it for me).

So each year, I send in the 1040 form with the 2210 form AND EVERY YEAR IL IRS claim I owe a penalty since I didn't pay exactly 1/4 of the amount each quarter that is due at the end of the year.  So I have to write them a nasty letter and give them copies of the forms that I already had sent in.  They EVERY YEAR ignore the 2210 form (even though there is a properly marked box on the 1040 telling them that I have sent a 2210 form).

Interesting though is that the US IRS always gets this right.

Other problems I have with the Estimated Taxes is that you have to do it every quarter.  When they withhold too much, they don't give you interest or a penalty.  I don't mind paying them what I owe (though with this screwed up state - we have the highest per capita shortfall, even though they raised the tax 67% - I would rather give my money to charity).

There has been a simple tax form that has be proposed :  2 lines 1) How much do you make and 2) send in that amount.

The only difference between a tax man and a taxidermist is that the taxidermist leaves the skin.Mark Twain

It is a good thing that we do not get as much government as we pay for. Will Rogers

Alexander Hamilton started the U.S. Treasury with nothing and that was the closest our country has ever been to being even. Will Rogers

There is no worse tyranny than to force a man to pay for what he does not want merely because you think it would be good for him. Robert A. Heinlein

Government's view of the economy could be summed up in a few short phrases: If it moves, tax it. If it keeps moving, regulate it. And if it stops moving, subsidise it ~ Ronald Reagan

People who complain about paying their income tax can be divided into two types: men and women.

What's the difference between a tax auditor and a rottweiler? A rottweiler eventually lets go.

A democratic government is the only one in which those who vote for a tax can escape the obligation to pay it.  ~Alexis de Tocqueville

Thursday, December 22, 2011


I have recently joined Facebook.  It is good in some respects, I found a long lost friend (real friend not just Facebook "friend").

It seems to not be as intuitive as I would like.  I tried to upload a video of a slideshow and it was being 'processed" so I tried to look at the help section to see how long processing should take.  The only reference was that it could take several minutes, in addition, it seemed if I left the page where processing was occurring it would be lost.  So I left after a few hours & tried a couple of other browsers & a Windows browser with the same results.  It turns out that it keeps "processing" whether you are on the page or close the browser.

To top it off, Facebook thought that the music in the background was a copyright violation & if I tried to upload it again without defending myself I would lose the ability to upload videos.  Well after 4-5 hours I started to get the violation notices from all my attempts and now I am prevented from uploading videos.  The slideshow was using the iMovie music, so I was probably not really violating the policy, but it seems easier to not upload anything else.

Another problem I had was that I have a Waukegan Swedish Glee Club channel that I am administering and wanted to "Share" those videos on a Facebook page; so I hit share & put in an different name then my Facebook name.  So they started another Facebook account.  Eventually I corrected the problem, But sometimes I wonder if I am meant to be online!

Facebook is like jail, you sit around and waste time, write on walls, and get poked by people you don't know.

I want to make a Facebook account and the name will be Nobody so when I see stupid crap people post, I can Like it. And it will say Nobody Likes This.

I changed all my passwords to 'incorrect'. So my computer just tells me when I forget.

Facebook is a polite way of being nosey

Facebook is a popular free social networking website that allows registered users to create profiles, upload photos and video, send messages and keep in touch with friends, family and colleagues

Wednesday, December 21, 2011


Have you noticed how useful "ish" is?

When do want to leave? Tenish!  (No one can complain that you weren't ready in time!)

What's the temperature?  Warmish!  (Don't have to actually know the temperature!)

How do I look? Beautiful (under breathe "ish") (Don't have to lie!)

There are numerous other applications, limited only by your imagination!