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RED MARBLES

I was at the corner grocery store buying some early potatoes.  I
noticed a small boy, delicate of bone and feature, ragged but clean,
hungrily appraising a basket of freshly picked green peas.

I paid
for my potatoes but was also drawn to the display of fresh green peas.. I
am a pushover for creamed peas and new potatoes.
Pondering the peas, I
couldn’t help overhearing the conversation between Mr. Miller (the store
owner) and the ragged boy next to me.

‘Hello Barry, how are you
today?’

‘H’lo , Mr. Miller. Fine, thank ya. Jus’ admirin’ them
peas. They sure look good.’

‘They are good, Barry. How’s your Ma?’

‘Fine. Gittin’ stronger alla’ time.’

‘Good. Anything I can
help you with?’

‘No, Sir. Jus’ admirin’ them peas.’

‘Would
you like to take some home ?’ asked Mr.. Miller.

‘No, Sir. Got
nuthin’ to pay for ’em with.’

‘Well, what have you to trade me for
some of those peas?’

‘All I got’s my prize marble here.’

‘Is that right? Let me see it’ said Miller..

‘Here ’tis.
She’s a dandy.’

‘I can see that. Hmmmmm, only thing is this one is
blue and I sort of go for red. Do you have a red one like this at home ?’
the store owner asked.

‘Not zackley but almost..’

‘Tell
you what. Take this sack of peas home with you and next trip this way let
me look at that red marble’.. Mr. Miller told the boy.

‘Sure will.
Thanks Mr. Miller.’

Mrs. Miller, who had been standing nearby,
came over to help me.. With a smile she said, ‘There are two other boys
like him in our community, all three are in very poor circumstances.
Jim just loves to bargain with
them for peas, apples, tomatoes, or whatever.. When they come back with
their red marbles, and they always do, he decides he doesn’t like red
after all and he sends them home with a bag of produce for a green marble
or an orange one, when they come on their next trip to the store..’

I left the store smiling to myself, impressed with this man. A
short time later I moved to Colorado , but I never forgot the story
of this man, the boys, and their bartering for marbles.

Several
years went by, each more rapid than the previous one. Just recently I had
occasion to visit some old friends in that Idaho community and while I was there
learned that Mr…. Miller had died.

They
were having his visitation that evening and knowing my friends wanted to
go, I agreed to accompany them. Upon arrival at the mortuary we fell into
line to meet the relatives of the deceased and to offer whatever words of
comfort we could.

Ahead of us in line were three young men. One
was in an army uniform and the other two wore nice haircuts, dark suits
and white shirts…..all very professional looking. They approached Mrs.
Miller, standing composed and smiling by her husband’s casket. Each of the
young men hugged her, kissed her on the cheek, spoke briefly with her, and
moved on to the casket..

Her misty light blue eyes followed them
as, one by one; each young man stopped briefly and placed his own warm
hand over the cold pale hand in the casket. Each left the mortuary
awkwardly, wiping his eyes.

Our turn came to meet Mrs. Miller.. I
told her who I was and reminded her of the story from those many years ago
and what she had told me about her husband’s bartering for marbles. With
her eyes glistening, she took my hand and led me to the casket.

‘Those three young men who just left were the boys I told you
about. They just told me how they appreciated the things Jim ‘traded’ them. Now, at last, when
Jim could not change his mind
about colour or size…..they came to pay their debt.’

‘We’ve
never had a great deal of the wealth of this world,’ she confided, ‘but
right now, Jim would consider
himself the richest man in Idaho.’

With loving gentleness she
lifted the lifeless fingers of her deceased husband. Resting underneath
were three exquisitely shined red marbles.

The Moral: We will not
be remembered by our words, but by our kind deeds.. Life is not measured
by the breaths we take, but by the moments that take our breath……

Today I wish you a day of ordinary miracles ~ A fresh pot of
coffee you didn’t make yourself…An unexpected phone call from an old
friend…..Green stoplights on your way to work….The fastest line at the
grocery store…A good sing-along song on the radio…Your keys found
right where you left them.

Send this to the people you’ll never
forget.. I just Did….

If you don’t send it to anyone, it means
you are in way too much of a hurry to even notice the ordinary miracles
when they occur.

IT’S
NOT WHAT YOU GATHER, BUT WHAT YOU SCATTER THAT TELLS WHAT KIND OF LIFE YOU
HAVE LIVED.

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Life Without Black People

A very humorous and revealing story is told about a group of white people who were fed up with African Americans, so they joined together and wished themselves away. They passed through a deep dark tunnel and emerged in sort of a twilight zone where there is an America without black people.
At first these white people breathed a sigh of relief.
‘At last’, they said, ‘no more crime, drugs, violence and welfare.’
All of the blacks have gone! Then suddenly, reality set in. The ‘NEW AMERICA’ is not America at all – only a barren land.
1. There are very few crops that have flourished because the nation was built on a slave-supported system.
2. There are no cities with tall skyscrapers because Alexander Mils, a black man, invented the elevator, and without it, one finds great difficulty reaching higher floors.
3. There are few if any cars because Richard Spikes, a black man, invented the automatic gearshift, Joseph Gambol, also black, invented the Super Charge System for Internal Combustion Engines, and Garrett A. Morgan, a black man, invented the traffic signals.
4. Furthermore, one could not use the rapid transit system because its procurer was the electric trolley, which was invented by another black man, Albert R. Robinson.
5. Even if there were streets on which cars and a rapid transit system could operate, they were cluttered with paper because an African American, Charles Brooks, invented the street sweeper.
6. There were few if any newspapers, magazines and books because John Love invented the pencil sharpener, William Purveys invented the fountain pen, and Lee Barrage invented the Type Writing Machine and W. A. Love invented the Advanced Printing Press. They were all, you guessed it, Black.
7. Even if Americans could write their letters, articles and books, they would not have been transported by mail because William Barry invented the Postmarking and Canceling Machine, William Purveys invented the Hand Stamp and Philip Downing invented the Letter Drop.
8. The lawns were brown and wilted because Joseph Smith invented the Lawn Sprinkler and John Burr the Lawn Mower.
9. When they entered their homes, they found them to be poorly ventilated and poorly heated. You see, Frederick Jones invented the Air Conditioner and Alice Parker the Heating Furnace. Their homes were also dim. But of course, Lewis Lattimer later invented the Electric Lamp, Michael Harvey invented the lantern, and Granville T. Woods invented the Automatic Cut off Switch. Their homes were also filthy because Thomas W. Steward invented the Mop and Lloyd P. Ray the Dust Pan.
10. Their children met them at the door – barefooted, shabby, motley and unkempt.  But what could one expect? Jan E. Matzelinger invented the Shoe Lasting Machine, Walter Sammons invented the Comb, Sarah Boone invented the Ironing Board, and George T. Samon invented the Clothes Dryer.
11. Finally, they were resigned to at least have dinner amidst all of this turmoil. But here again, the food had spoiled because another Black Man, John Standard invented the refrigerator.
Now, isn’t that something? What would this country be like without the contributions of Blacks, as African-Americans?
Martin Luther King, Jr. said, ‘by the time we leave for work, millions of Americans have depended on the inventions from the minds of Blacks.’
Black history includes more than just slavery, Frederick Douglass, Martin Luther King, Jr., Malcolm X, and Marcus Garvey & W.E.B. Dubois.
PLEASE SHARE, ABUNDANTLY

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CRAIG’S LIST AD

To the Guy Who Tried to Mug Me in Downtown Savannah night before last.

Date: 2009-05-27, 1:43 a.m.

I was the guy wearing the black Burberry jacket that you demanded that I hand over, shortly after you pulled the knife on me and my girlfriend, threatening our lives. You also asked for my girlfriend’s purse and earrings. I can only hope that you somehow come across this rather important message.

First, I’d like to apologize for your embarrassment; I didn’t expect you to actually crap in your pants when I drew my pistol after you took my jacket. The evening was not that cold, and I was wearing the jacket for a reason. My girlfriend had just bought me that Kimber Model 1911 .45 ACP pistol for my birthday, and we had picked up a shoulder holster for it that very evening. Obviously you agree that it is a very intimidating weapon when pointed at your head … isn’t it?!

I know it probably wasn’t fun walking back to wherever you’d come from with that brown sludge in your pants. I’m sure it was even worse walking bare-footed since I made you leave your shoes, cell phone, and wallet with me. [That prevented you from calling or running to your buddies to come help mug us again].

After I called your mother or “Momma” as you had her listed in your cell, I explained the entire episode of what you’d done. Then I went and filled up my gas tank as well as those of four other people in the gas station, — on your credit card. The guy with the big motor home took 150 gallons and was extremely grateful!

I gave your shoes to a homeless guy outside Vinnie Van Go Go’s, along with all the cash in your wallet. [That made his day!]

I then threw your wallet into the big pink “pimp mobile” that was parked at the curb … after I broke the windshield and side window and keyed the entire driver’s side of the car.

Later, I called a bunch of phone sex numbers from your cell phone. Ma Bell just now shut down the line, although I only used the phone for a little over a day now, so what ‘s going on with that? Earlier, I managed to get in two threatening phone calls to the DA’s office and one to the FBI, while mentioning President Obama as my possible target.

The FBI guy seemed really intense and we had a nice long chat (I guess while he traced your number etc.).

In a way, perhaps I should apologize for not killing you … but I feel this type of retribution is a far more appropriate punishment for your threatened crime. I wish you well as you try to sort through some of these rather immediate pressing issues, and can only hope that you have the opportunity to reflect upon, and perhaps reconsider, the career path you’ve chosen to pursue in life. Remember, next time you might not be so lucky. Have a good day!

Thoughtfully yours,

Alex

P.S. Remember this motto … An armed society makes for a more civil society!

I probably don’t have to ask you to forward this one.

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F A M I L Y

I ran into a stranger as he passed by,
‘Oh excuse me please’ was my reply.

He said, ‘Please excuse me too;
I wasn’t watching for you.’

We were very polite, this stranger and I.
We went on our way and we said goodbye.

But at home a different story is told,
How we treat our loved ones, young and old.

Later that day, cooking the evening meal,
My son stood beside me very still.

When I turned, I nearly knocked him down.
‘Move out of the way,’ I said with a frown.

He walked away, his little heart broken.
I didn’t realize how harshly I’d spoken.

While I lay awake in bed, God’s still

small voice came to me and said,

‘While dealing with a stranger,
common courtesy you use,
but the family you love, you seem to abuse.

Go and look on the kitchen floor,
you’ll find some flowers there by the door.

Those are the flowers he brought for you.
He picked them himself: pink, yellow and blue.

He stood very quietly not to spoil the surprise;
you never saw the tears that filled his little eyes.’

By this time, I felt very small,
And now my tears began to fall.

I quietly went and knelt by his bed;
‘Wake up, little one, wake up,’ I said.

‘Are these the flowers you picked for me?’
He smiled, ‘I found ’em, out by the tree.

I picked ’em because they’re pretty like you.
I knew you’d like ’em, especially the blue.’

I said, ‘Son, I’m very sorry for the way I acted today;
I shouldn’t have yelled at you that way.’
He said, ‘Oh, Mom, that’s okay.
I love you anyway.’

I said, ‘Son, I love you too,
and I do like the flowers, especially the blue.’

FAMILY
Are you aware that if we died tomorrow, the company
that we are working for could easily replace us in
a matter of days.
But the family we left behind will feel the loss
for the rest of their lives.

And come to think of it, we pour ourselves more
into work than into our own family,
an unwise investment indeed,
don’t you think?
So what is behind the story?

Do you know what the word FAMILY means?
FAMILY = (F)ATHER (A)ND (M)OTHER (I) (L)OVE (Y)OU

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How old is Grandpa?

image001

Stay with this — the answer is at the end.  It will blow you away.
One evening a grandson was talking to his grandfather about current events.
The grandson asked his grandfather what he thought about the shootings at schools, the computer age, and just things in general.

The Grandfather replied, ‘Well, let me think a minute, I was born before:

‘       television

‘       penicillin

‘       polio shots

‘       frozen foods

‘       Xerox

‘       contact lenses

‘       Frisbees and

‘       the pill

There were no:

‘       credit cards

‘       laser beams or

‘       ball-point pens

Man had not invented:

‘       pantyhose

‘       air conditioners

‘       dishwashers

‘       clothes dryers

‘       and the clothes were hung out to dry in the fresh air and

‘      man hadn’t yet walked on the moon

image002
Your Grandmother and I got married first, and then lived together..

Every family had a father and a mother.

Until I was 25, I called every man older than me, ‘Sir’.
And after I turned 25, I still called policemen and every man with a title, ‘Sir.’

We were before gay-rights, computer- dating, dual careers, daycare centers, and group therapy.

Our lives were governed by the Ten Commandments, good judgment, and common sense.

We were taught to know the difference between right and wrong and to stand up and take responsibility for our actions.

Serving your country was a privilege; living in this country was a bigger privilege.

We thought fast food was what people ate during Lent.

Having a meaningful relationship meant getting along with your cousins.

Draft dodgers were those who closed front doors as the evening breeze started.

Time-sharing meant time the family spent together in the evenings and weekends-not purchasing condominiums.

image003

We never heard of FM radios, tape decks, CDs, electric typewriters, yogurt, or guys wearing earrings.

We listened to Big Bands, Jack Benny, and the President’s speeches on our radios..

And I don’t ever remember any kid blowing his brains out listening to Tommy Dorsey.

If you saw anything with ‘Made in Japan ‘ on it, it was junk

The term ‘making out’ referred to how you did on your school exam.

Pizza Hut, McDonald’s, and instant coffee were unheard of.

We had 5 &10-cent stores where you could actually buy things for 5 and 10 cents.

Ice-cream cones, phone calls, rides on a streetcar, and a Pepsi were all a nickel.

And if you didn’t want to splurge, you could spend your nickel on enough stamps to mail 1 letter and 2 postcards.

You could buy a new Chevy Coupe for $600, .. .. but who could afford one?
Too bad, because gas was 11 cents a gallon.

image004


In my day:

‘       ‘grass’ was mowed,

‘       ‘coke’ was a cold drink,

‘     ‘pot’ was something your mother cooked in and

‘       ‘rock music’ was your grandmother’s lullaby.

‘       ‘Aids’ were helpers in the Principal’s office,

‘      ‘ chip’ meant a piece of wood,

‘       ‘hardware’ was found in a hardware store and

‘     ‘software’ wasn’t even a word.

And we were the last generation to actually believe that a lady needed a husband to have a baby.
No wonder people call us ‘old and confused’ and say there is a generation gap. and how old do you think I am?

I bet you have this old person in mind….you are in for a shock!

Read on to see — pretty scary if you think about it and pretty sad at the same time.
Are you ready ?  

That would be me at only 59 years old.

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A Birthday Gift

A woman decides to have a facelift for her 50th birthday…

She spends $15,000 and feels pretty good about the results.

On her way home, she stops at a newsstand to buy a newspaper.

Before leaving, she says to the clerk, ‘I hope you don’t mind my asking, but how old do you think I am

‘About 32,’ is the reply.’

‘Nope! I’m exactly 50,’ the woman says happily.

A little while later she goes into McDonald’s and asks the counter girl the very same question.

The girl replies, ‘I’d guess about 29.’

The woman replies with a big smile, ‘Nope, I’m 50.’

Now she’s feeling really good about herself. She stops in a drug store on her way down the street.

She goes up to the counter to get some mints and asks the clerk this burning question.

The clerk responds, ‘Oh, I’d say 30.’

Again she proudly responds, ‘I’m 50, but thank you!’

While waiting for the bus to go home, she asks an old man waiting next to her the same question.

He replies, ‘Lady, I’m 78 and my eyesight is going. Although, when I was young there was a sure-fire way to tell how old a woman was.

It sounds very forward, but it requires you to let me put my hands under your bra.

Then, and only then can I tell you EXACTLY how old you are.’

They wait in silence on the empty street until her curiosity gets the best of her.

She finally blurts out, ‘What the hell, go ahead.’

He slips both of his hands under her blouse and begins to feel around very slowly and carefully.

He bounces and weighs each breast.

He pushes her breasts together and rubs them against each other.

After a couple of minutes of this, she says, ‘Okay, okay….How old am I?’

He completes one last squeeze of her breasts, removes his hands, and says, ‘Madam, you are 50.’

Stunned and amazed, the woman says, ‘That was incredible, how could you tell?’

The old man says, ‘Promise you won’t get mad?’

‘I promise I won’t’ she says.

‘I was behind you at McDonalds.’

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ADVICE FROM A RETIRED HUSBAND

It is important for men to remember that, as women grow older, it becomes

harder for them to maintain the same quality of housekeeping as when they were younger. When

you notice this, try not to yell at them. Some are oversensitive, and there’s nothing worse than

an oversensitive20woman.

My name is Ron. Let me relate how I handled the situation with my wife,

Carol Anne. When I retired a few years ago, it became necessary for Carol Anne to get a

full-time job, along with her part-time job, both for extra income and for the health benefits that we

needed. Shortly after she started working, I noticed she was beginning to show her age. I

usually get home from the golf club about the same time she gets home from work

Although she knows how hungry I am, she almost always says she has to rest

for half an hour or so before she starts dinner. I don’t yell at her. Instead, I tell her to

take her time and just wake me when she gets dinner on the table. I generally have lunch in the

Men’s Grill at the club, so eating out is not reasonable. I’m ready for some home-cooked grub

when I hit that door. She used to do the dishes as soon as we finished eating. But now it’s

not unusual for them to sit on the table for several hours after dinner.

I do what I can by diplomatically reminding her several times each evening

that they won’t clean themselves. I know she really appreciates this, as it does seem to

motivate her to get them done before she goes to bed…

Another symptom of aging is complaining, I think. For example, she will say

that it is difficult for her to find time to pay the monthly bills during her lunch

hour. But, Boys, we take ’em for better or worse, so I just smile and offer encouragement. I

tell her to stretch it out over two, or even three days. That way, she won’t have to rush so much…

I also remind her that missing lunch completely now and then wouldn’t hurt her any (if you

know what I mean). I like to think tact is one of my strong points…

When doing simple jobs; she seems to think she20needs more rest periods. She

had to take a break when she was only half-finished mowing the yard. I try not to make a

scene. I’m a fair man… I tell her to fix herself a nice, big, cold glass of freshly squeezed

lemonade and just sit for a while. And, as long as she is making one for herself, she may as

well make one for me, too.

I know that I probably look like a saint in the way I support Carol Anne.

I’m not saying that showing this much consideration is easy. Many men will find it difficult.

Some will find it impossible! Nobody knows better than I do how frustrating women get as they

get older.

However, Guys, even if you just use a little more tact and less criticism of your

aging wife because of this article, I will consider that writing it was well worthwhile.

After all, we are put on this earth to help each other.

EDITOR’S NOTE:

Ron died suddenly on January 31 of a perforated rectum. The police report

says he was found wit

h a Calloway extra-long 50-inch Big Bertha Driver II golf club jammed up his

rear end, with

barely 5 inches of grip showing, and a sledge hammer lying nearby. His wife

Carol Anne was

arrested and charged with murder. The all-woman jury took only 10 minutes to

find her Not

Guilty, accepting her defense that Ron, somehow without looking,

accidentally sat down on his

golf club.

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Here’s to US!!!!

No matter what our kids and the new generation think about us,

WE ARE AWESOME !!!!

OUR LIFE IS LIVING PROOF !!!!

To Those of Us Born

1930 – 1979

At the end of this email is a quote of the month by Jay Leno. If you don’t read anything else, please

read what he said.

Very well stated, Mr. Leno.

TO ALL THE KIDS WHO SURVIVED THE

1930’s, 40’s, 50’s,

60’s and 70’s!!

First, we survived being born to mothers who smoked and/or drank while they were pregnant.

They took aspirin, ate blue cheese dressing, tuna from a can and didn’t get tested for diabetes.

Then after that trauma, we were put to sleep on our tummies in baby cribs covered

with bright colored lead-base paints.

We had no childproof lids on medicine bottles, locks on doors or cabinets and when we rode our bikes,

we had baseball caps

not helmets on our heads.

As infants & children, we would ride in cars with no car seats, no booster seats, no seat belts, no air bags, bald tires and sometimes no brakes.

Riding in the back of a pick- up truck on a warm day was always a special treat.

We drank water from the garden hose and not from a bottle.

We shared one soft drink with four friends, from one bottle an d no one actually died from this.

We ate cupcakes, white bread, real butter and bacon. We drank Kool-Aid made with real white sugar. And, we weren’t overweight. WHY?

Because we were always outside playing…that’s why!

We would leave home in the morning and play all day, as long as we were back when the streetlights came on..

No one was able to reach us all day. And, we were OKAY.

We would spend hours building our go-carts out of scraps

and then ride them down the hill,

only to find out we forgot the brakes. After running into the bushes a few times, we learned to solve the problem

We did not have Play stations, Nintendo’s and X-boxes. There were no video games, no 150 channels on cable, no video movies or DVD’s,

no surround-sound or CD’s,

no cell phones,

no personal computers,

no Internet and no chat rooms.

WE HAD FRIENDS and we went outside and found them!

We fell out of trees, got cut, broke bones and teeth and there were no lawsuits from these accidents.

We would get spankings with wooden spoons, switches, ping pong paddles, or just a bare hand and no one would call child services to report abuse.

We ate worms and mud pies

made from dirt, and

the worms did not live in us forever.

We were given BB guns for our 10th birthdays, made up games with sticks and tennis balls and, although we were told it would happen, we did not put out very many eyes.

We rode bikes or walked to a friend’s house and knocked on the door or rang the bell, or just walked in and talked to them.

Little League had tryouts and not everyone made the team.

Those who didn’t had to learn

to deal with disappointment.

Imagine that!!

The idea of a parent bailing us out if we broke the law was unheard of. They actually sided with the law!

These generations have produced some of the best

risk-takers, problem solvers and inventors ever.

The past 50 years have been an explosion of innovation and new ideas.

We had freedom, failure, success and responsibility, and we learned how to deal with it all.

If YOU are one of them, CONGRATULATIONS!

You might want to share this with others who have had the luck to grow up as kids, before the lawyers and the government regulated so much of our lives for our own good.

While you are at it, forward it to your kids so they will know how brave and lucky their parents were.

Kind of makes you want to run through the house with scissors, doesn’t it ?

~

The quote of the month is by

Jay Leno:

‘With hurricanes, tornados, fires out of control, mud slides, flooding, severe thunderstorms tearing up the country from one end to another, and with the threat of bird flu an d terrorist attacks, are we sure this is a good time to take God out of the Pledge of Allegiance?’

For those that prefer to think that God is not watching over us…go ahead and delete this.

For the rest of us…pass this on.

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