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Monday, December 31, 2007

Too Tired To Write A Good Year-ending Post About The Incompetent San Francisco Zoo

This is my 176th post of the year - that was my goal because I noticed I did 176 posts in both 2005 and 2006 so I made that my goal for 2007 too. Make sense to you? Well I made it and was hoping to write a post criticizing the San Francisco Zoo and its regulatory body (The Associatio of Zoos And Aquariums which apprently inspected the SF Zoo in the last three years BUT NEVER FOUND FAULT WITH THE TIGER WALL WHICH IS 4 to 5 FEET LOWER THAN THE RECOMMENDED NATIONAL STANDARD) but I am too tired to research and document the failings and contradictions and I will do it next year heh.

Click on this post's title if you want to read a news account of the zoo issue. Bottom line is the zoo must be incompetent if it allows visitors to enter a park with deadly animals in unsecure cages. I await the NY Times story exposing all the other zoos that are also unsafe for the visitors.

Happy New Year to all. Have fun and be safe!

Saturday, December 29, 2007

Great Screen Saver

This is a photo I am using for my screen saver. It is my favorite photo of 2007 and I took it in Ricketts Glen State Park in northeastern Pennsylvania. The park has about 17 waterfalls and a well-marked hiking trail on which you can see each waterfall.
The hike is maybe 3-4 miles and of low/moderate difficulty.
I highly recommend for a weekend diversion in the summer.

Friday, December 28, 2007

I Never Knew This

I am watching the Emerald Bowl being played in San Francisco. Did you know this bowl is sponsored by Emerald Nuts? I never knew that but it is true that you can learn something new every day!

Vegas Vacation...Room With A View

Thursday, December 27, 2007

My Bowl Picks

I diverted to Sin City for a few days to end the year and it is great - I can bet on the College Bowl games while I am here. Here are my picks :

  • Texas
  • Boston College
  • Maryland
  • Connecticut
  • Mississippi State
  • Penn State
  • Alabama
  • Illinois
  • West Virginia

Now don't go wasting your own hard-earned money on my picks. I am no expert and am only making small wagers on some of the above games. I just placed my first bet on Texas about 2 minutes before kickoff. I had to lay 2 & 1/2 points to the ASU Sun Devils.

Wednesday, December 26, 2007

This Would Suck

More famous last words..."hey let's go to the zoo" ........and get killed by a tiger. I am referring of course to the news from San Francisco that one of the tigers at the city zoo escaped from its cage and killed a zoo visitor.

I guess you just never know how your day is going to turn out.

Monday, December 24, 2007

Favorite Websites & Blogs

Here is a list of my favorite blogs and websites and regular internet oases:
And this is one I visit to see what the self-loathing, America-loathing nutroots are saying:

Cliff Tan

The AP ran a story today that says the credit card debt and delinquency rate in the USA is a growing disaster. They quoted a visiting scholar at Stanford Univeesity named Cliff Tan.

I am ususally skeptical about the MSM experts so I googled Mr. Tan. Below is his CV from the university website.

IMHO, based on the info provided by Stanford's website, Mr. Tan may be an expert but not about American credit. I wonder why and how Mr. Tan was selected by the AP to comment on their story?

Beginning of CV:

"Cliff Tan is a Visiting Scholar at the Stanford Center for International Development. Prior to SCID, Mr. Tan headed up local markets strategy and research in fixed income and foreign exchange for Citigroup in Asia. In 18 years of research on Asia and Japan, Mr. Tan also worked as FX/Interest Rate Strategist and acting cohead of Asian Economics for Warburg Dillon Read (now UBS), Japan and Asia Economist for Wellington Management Company, and proprietary trading/credit risk economist for Bankers Trust Company. Mr. Tan has been recognized as a top five currency strategist by Asiamoney (including a #1 ranking in 2003), and has been cited for work as both an economist and strategist by The Asset magazine.

Before entering financial markets, Mr. Tan was an economist at the US Federal Reserve Board covering Greater China, a Lecturer at the University of Hong Kong's School of Economics and Finance, and Visiting Fellow at the Korea Development Institute.

Mr. Tan received MPhil and MA in Economics from Yale University, and an AM in East Asian Regional Studies from Harvard University. He holds an AB (magna cum laude) from the University of Southern California."


Post Number 166 in 2007

I have had this blog for three years now and noticed I made 176 posts in both 2005 and in 2007. So 176 posts is now my goal for 2007.

This is my 166th so I have ten more to go to reach 176. I may have to take my laptop on my Vegas vacation to make 176.

Cost of living from 1952

You have to click on this picture to enlarge. It has great stuff...tuition to Harvard was $600 per year while the average annual income was about $4,000. Today Harvard tuition tops $40,000 and the average income is about $48,000. So tuition rose by over 6,000% while income rose by only about 1,100%. Big difference there.

Merry Christmas to Sean and his new little brother, Luke

Sunday, December 23, 2007

Pennsylvania State Police Getting Whiter (or more like the Inquirer)

The story is about the racial composition of the State Police force - jeez do they have the same illness as Michael Jackson? No seriously - "State Police Getting Whiter" was the actual headline to the article in the paper's print edition.

I bet they could write this same story about the Philadelphia Inquirer editorial staff. In fact, how about I count the mumber of white columnists in the same paper?

They make it easy for me because on the Front Page, the paper is heralding it has "12 Must-Read Columnists" to read in this edition.

Here are their names : Dave Boyer, Monica Yant Kinney, Jonathan Last, Craig Laban, Jonathan Storm, Mark Bowden, a twofer of Satullo/Auth, Carlin Romano, Lisa Scottoline, Michael Smerconish, Bob Ford and Dick Polman.

I am not familiar with the first, Dave Boyer, but I know for a fact the other 11 are all white!! Could the Inquirer get whiter? Doesn't seem to be possible.

Big Frigging Mofo

Sign of the Apocolypse

This is a good blog so just click on the post title to see what the apocolypse refers to.......FYI- Ithaca is little two-college town (Ithaca and Cornell) but the these police cars may be a bit much even for a place likely run by tree-hugging hippies.

On the other hand, variety and diversity make for a great and interesting country. Right?

Wednesday, December 19, 2007

Koala Bear at San Diego Zoo

I don't think I posted this photo last month- I was looking again at my pics from San Diego and thought this one was a keeper too!

Will America Put This Family In The White House?

If so, will the kitchen have to be enlarged?

Tuesday, December 18, 2007

I would vote for this candidate if they ran this ad!

Great campaign video (spoof?).

Hat tip to the Blogfather, Glenn Reynolds, at

Karen Heller Takes Down Alycia Lane

Below is the commentary from one of the Philly Inquirer's best writers, Karen Heller, re the Alicia Lane "crack-up". Lane was paid $700,000 per year to be co-anchor and was not even the top banana on the news program (Larry Mendte is #1 anchor). I don't understand why the program directors don;t scrap these overpaid talking heads and use college kids who are majoring in TV? Hell even if ratings drop a bit, they would still save millions in salary costs!


Alycia Lane: Stunning beauty but where's the common sense?

We know why Channel 3 hired Alycia Lane. It's because she's car-crackup beautiful, a size two and the camera adores her. Which is fitting for her second career as a tabloid cover girl.

When defenders argue that someone is actually smart, you know that intelligence has little to do with the $700,000 salary. It no longer matters if Lane is actually smart - smart people never require the "actually" business - because what she clearly lacks, and hasn't shown since her arrival in Philadelphia, is one iota of common sense.

Lane is famous for her bikini pics, 55 jackets in her closet, her boyfriends and breakups, inappropriate emails to married men, Dr. Phil confessions and, since last Saturday, her alleged shameful language and a felony charge for punching a New York City cop.

What Lane has not gained a reputation for is her reporting. She once text-messaged a print reporter during a break in the newscast. To paraphrase Ruby Dee speaking to her drug lord son in American Gangster, we know you've done all sorts of wrong things but you just don't hit a cop.

Then Lane phoned Gov. Edward Rendell "to tell her side of the story," according to her a spokesman. In journalism, this is worse than hitting a cop. Reporters, even exquisitely lit television anchors, are supposed to cover politicians not hit them up for assistance. If Channel 3 is truly in the practice of journalism, the managers shouldn't have a qualm about saving $700,000 next year.

Check the calendar. It's 2007 and local television still resembles a Trumpian world with middle-aged men holding onto their duchies for life yet an ever-changing America's Next Top Trophy Anchorwoman. On WIP, the men are schlubs and Rhea Hughes is a blond babe many years their junior, though she knows and talks sports more than they do. And that's on radio.

In politics, people still comment on Hillary Clinton's pantsuits, her hair, her makeup though nobody seems to notice Bill Richardson's heft or Mitt Romney's immobile hair. (OK, I just did.) Then people have the temerity to complain that Clinton is too smart, as if this was a bad thing.

There is no such thing as too smart. When I finally landed a reporting position at a big city paper, my grandmother turned to me and said "That's all well and good, dear, but why couldn't you be on television like that nice Diane Sawyer person?" Because nobody looks like Diane Sawyer, I told her, not even Katie Couric, and that's not for lack of trying.

Once, on a layover en route to a national political convention, I was stuck in a waiting area with almost a dozen anchorbots, all size 2, beauty-queen gorgeous and constantly primping, though no one was paying them much attention. They were only locally fabulously famous.

Lane, however, has put an end to that. Now, she is nationally notorious. She was hired for people to look at her. Channel 3, and other television stations that do the same, can't be shocked when those same women prove to be attention junkies off-camera as well.

Women were supposed to have gotten further by now, to be judged for their work, not primarily their looks, unless they're strippers or something.

Girls are hooked on America's Next Top Model, I'm sorry to report, the No. 1 show among young female viewers. Girls at Monday night's Hannah Montana concert were preening in blond wigs and sequins.

Alycia Lane has big problems. But the bigger one is why businesses keep hiring women because they're car-crackup beautiful instead of being smart and imbued with common sense.


Chris Matthews' Brother is a RINO

This story makes it clear I was right when I hesitated in voting for Jim Matthews for county commissioner. He is a Republican In Name Only and the story shows him sucking up to a far-left liberal Joe Hoeffel (the county's minority and Democrat commissioner) while Bruce Castor the other Republican commissioner is left in the dark. BTW- Castor is future star for the Republican party in the state and maybe nationally. I predict Castor could be governor one day.

And be careful if you decide to trust a pol like Jim Matthews or his brother, liberal wheeny and MSNBC nitwit, Chris.

Monday, December 17, 2007

Tom Friedman's Carbon Footprint

No surprises here - Tom Friedman, NYT OPED columnist, writes from Bali that its too late to ask if it is too late to take steps on global warming while Friedman, himself, lives in a 11,000 square foot home on The Beltway. (hattip to my favorite blog via

To be fair, Friedman also has a wife and two college-age daughters. So he needs alot of room.

My New House

8th Grade Exam (from 1895)

Remember when our grandparents, great-grandparents, and such stated that they only had an 8th grade education? Well, check this out. - - -

This is the eighth-grade final exam from 1895 in Salina , KS , USA. It was taken from the original document on file at the Smokey Valley Genealogical Society and Library in Salina , KS , and reprinted by the Salina Journal.


Grammar (Time, one hour)
1. Give nine rules for the use of Capital Letters.
2. Name the Parts of Speech and define those that have no Modifications.
3. Define Verse, Stanza and Paragraph.
4. What are the Principal Parts of a verb. Give Principal Parts of. lie, lay and run
5. Define Case, Illustrate each Case.
6. What is Punctuation? Give rules for principal marks of Punctuation.
7. Write a composition of about 150 words and show therein that you understand the practical use of the rules of grammar.

Arithmetic (Time, 1.25 hours)
1. Name and define the Fundamental Rules of Arithmetic.
2. A wagon box is 2 ft deep, 10 feet long! , and 3 ft. wide. How many bushels of wheat will it hold? < BR>3. If a load of wheat weighs 3942 lbs., what is it worth at 50cts/bushel, deducting 1050lbs. for tare?
4. District No. 33 has a valuation of $35,000. What is the necessary levy to carry on a school seven months at $50 per month, and have $104 for incidentals?
5. Find cost of 6720 lbs. coal at $6.00 per ton.
6. Find the interest of $512.60 for 8 months and 18 days at 7 percent.
7. What is the cost of 40 boards 12 inches wide and 16 ft. long at $20 per meter?
8 Find bank discount on $300 for! 90 days (no grace) at 10 percent.
9. What is the cost of a square farm at $15 per acre, the distance
around which is 640 rods?
10. Write a Bank Check, a Promissory Note, and a Receipt.

U. S. History (Time, 45 minutes)
1. Give the epochs into which U. S. History is divided.
2. Give an account of the discovery of America by Columbus .
3. Relate the causes and results of the Revolutionary War.
4. Show the territorial growth of t he United States.
5. Tell what you can of the history of Kansas .
6. Describe three of the most prominent battles of the Rebellion.
7. Who were the following: Morse, Whitney, Fulton, Bell, Lincoln, Penn, and Howe?
8. Name events connected with the following dates: 1607, 1620, 1800, 1849, 1865.

Orthography (Time, one hour)
1. What is meant by the following: Alphabet, phonetic, orthography, etymology, syllabication?
2. What are elementary sounds? How classified?
3. What are the following, and give examples of each: Trigraph, sub vocals, diphthong, cognate letters, linguals?
4. Give four substitutes for caret 'u! '.
5. Give two rules for spelling words with final 'e.' Name two
exceptions under each rule.
6 Give two uses of silent letters in spelling. Illustrate each.
7. Define the following prefixes and use in connection with a word: bi, dis, mis, pre, semi, post, non, inter, mono, sup
8. Mark diacritically and divide i nto syllables the following, and name the sign that indicates the sound: card, ball, mercy, sir, odd, cell, rise, blood, fare, last.
9. Use the following correctly in sentences: cite, site, sight, fane,
fain, feign, vane, vain, vein, raze, raise, rays.
10. Write 10 words frequently mispronounced and indicate pronunciation by use of diacritical marks and by syllabication.

Geography (Tim e, one hour)
1. What is climate? Upon what does climate depend?
2. How do you account for the extremes of climate in Kansas?
3. Of what use are rivers? Of what use is the ocean?
4. Describe the mountains of North America .
5. Name and describe the following: Monrovia, Odessa, Denver,
Manitoba, Hecla, Yukon, St. Helena, Juan Fernand ez, Aspinwall & Orinoco.
6. Name and locate the principal trade centers of the U.S.
7. Name all the republics of Europe and give the capital of each.
8. Why is the Atlantic Coast colder than the Pacific in the same latitude?
9. Describe the process by which the water of the ocean returns to the sources of rivers.
10. Describe the movements of the earth. Give the inclination of the earth.

Also notice that the exam took five hours to complete.

Gives the saying "she/he only had an 8th grade education" a whole new meaning, doesn't it?

What happened to us? It is kind of humbling, isn't it?

Nun Gets An Obituary

Ever notice how priests are routinely written in the obits section of the newspapers but nuns almost never get a write-up? Well, yesterday, the Philly Inquirer published a nice obit for a nun that just passed away. Here it is below

Posted on Sun, Dec. 16, 2007
Educator in region for half a century
By Sally A. Downey Inquirer Staff Writer

Sister Anna Josephine Bennis, 90, an educator in Philadelphia-area schools for 50 years, died of heart failure Nov. 22 at St. Joseph Villa, a retirement residence in Flourtown for the Sisters of St. Joseph.

Sister Anna Josephine taught in elementary schools in Philadelphia and Wilmington for 13 years before becoming a teacher and an administrator in Philadelphia Archdiocese high schools.

In 1973, she became the first female high school principal in the archdiocese, at Archbishop Prendergast High School in Drexel Hill. She inspired her faculty to strive for excellence, said Alice Guerin-Cronin, a former teacher at Prendergast. "God gave Sister as a gift to the world," Guerin-Cronin said.

In 1978, Sister Anna Josephine supervised the building of a new athletic facility at Prendergast after fire destroyed the gymnasium. That year she was named one of the most effective principals in the United States by the National Association of Secondary School Principals.

Before becoming principal, Sister Anna Josephine taught English and religion at John W. Hallahan Catholic Girls' High School in Philadelphia from 1951 to 1955; led the English department and was activities director at West Philadelphia Catholic High School for Girls for nine years; directed activities and the English department at Cardinal Dougherty High School in Philadelphia for six years; then was vice principal and summer school principal at Cardinal O'Hara High School in Springfield, Delaware County, from 1970 to 1973.

From 1980 until retiring in 1985, she coordinated continuing-education programs for the Sisters of St. Joseph.

Sister Anna Josephine grew up in Germantown as Bernadette Bennis. She entered the Convent of the Sisters of St. Joseph in Philadelphia after graduating from Hallahan in 1935. She earned a bachelor's degree from Chestnut Hill College and a master's degree in English from Columbia University. For 25 years she taught Saturday English classes at Chestnut Hill to nuns earning bachelor's degrees.
Sister Anna Josephine often taught creative writing in the high schools where she was assigned and advised the newspaper and literary magazine staffs. She illustrated and wrote verses for greeting cards that the recipients cherished, said a friend, Sister Rita Michael Scully. Her handmade Christmas cards for this year were ready to be mailed, Sister Rita said.

When asked how she would like to be remembered, Sister Anna Josephine wrote:
"I hope to take and leave these five senses for here and hereafter: Love, Prayer, Humor, Beauty, People. These treasures fly on my mystical carpet between heaven and earth."

She is survived by a sister, Madeleine Degnan, and nieces and nephews. A Funeral Mass was said Nov. 27 at St. Joseph Villa in Flourtown.

Saturday, December 15, 2007

A Letter From Hillary

I like to know what the enemy is saying so I got on the emailing list for Hillary Clinton's campaign. Below is the latest email from her camaign. Hillary now says she will sign every bill Bush ever vetoed. I see a lot of desperation in her email and can picture her slowly shrinking while shrieking "I'm melting, I'm melting!". IMHO, that is a pretty picture.


"Dear AJ,
Running for president means asking a lot of people to put their faith in you -- and putting your faith in a lot of people. You've never let me down, and my promise to you has always been this: if you put your faith in me, I will fight for you every day when I'm president.

When I get to the White House, I'll end the war in Iraq and bring our troops home. I'll stop the cowboy diplomacy and Bush's war on science. I'll reverse the attacks on our Constitution and civil liberties. I'll ask the Congress to send me everything that Bush vetoed, like stem cell research and the Children's Health Insurance Program.

From day one, I'll be fighting for you, because America needs a clean and decisive break from seven years of George Bush. Not one of the Republican candidates is capable of making that happen. They're all promising four more years of the same failed policies. They see Bush's failure in Iraq and want to continue it. They see failure of leadership on the economy and want to repeat it. They see his assault on civil liberties and the disgraces of Guantanamo and want to carry them on. We need a candidate who can beat them. Will you put your faith in me today and make a contribution so I can take on the Republicans in 2008? Make a contribution today. So much is on the line. We'll lose so much that we believe in and care about if we let the White House stay in Republican hands.

That means we have to nominate a Democrat with the proven ability to take on the tactics of the Republican attack machine and win. And we need someone with the strength and experience to lead America in a positive new direction. I know I'm that candidate. That's why I'm in this race, and that's why I'm asking for your help today. Make a contribution to help me win in 2008. I want to thank you for having faith in me, and I promise to fight for you every day.

Sincerely,Hillary Rodham Clinton" END OF EMAIL

I bolded some parts of the email I found interesting (she has veered left and is embracing far-left talking points like Guantanamo and civil liberties bullcrap).

Thursday, December 13, 2007

IRAQ STUDY GROUP (remember that?)

Wow the one-year anniversary for the report by the Iraq Study Group came and went with no notice or hoopla from the MSM.

The report was released on December 6, 2006 and recommended a phased withdrawal. As you may recall, President Bush considered it and told everyone he would announce his decision in mid - January which he did.

In January of 2007, Bush basically said ..."stick your report, I am going to add troops not reduce troops". Well, the MSMwent nuts and it turns out so far Bush and especially General Petraeus were right.

Let's hope and pray they can wind this war down and bring the troops home safe and soon!

Global Warming Is A Problem ?

Just got my heating bill. It is not even winter yet and my bill was about 50% higher than last year BECAUSE the temperature (for this billing month) was an average of 7 degrees colder than last year!!

That is right- last year the average temp was 52 degrees and this year it was 45 degrees. What happened to Global Warming? I say bring it on if my heating bills are lowered!

Wow - Listen to what the parents of Megan Kanka Say

The state of New Jersey is about to outlaw the death penalty.

New Jersey is of course one of the most liberal states and its very liberal governor provided the impetus to this move. I have been following it half-heartedly but today I read a story about the parents of Megan Kanka and how they felt about losing out on seeing the rapist/killer of their littel girl get what he deserves: The Death Penalty!

Read the whole story - it is heartbreaking to hear the mother and father say they want the killer to die and deservedly so IMHO. And keep in mind the judge and jury sentenced the killer to death.

Friday, December 07, 2007

Pole Volter ?

From the Philly Inquirer online edition this morning:

"Jocelyn Kirsch, a Drexel senior, often claimed to be an Olympic caliber pole volter. She is one-half of the "Bonnie and Clyde" couple, sprung from jail yesterday by grim-faced parents who posted bail. "

Pole Volter ??? Is that a new name for the girls that gyrate and dance around the vertical poles in gentleman's clubs? ....they will give you a charge? Jeez - where are the editors?

Thursday, December 06, 2007

Why Put A Debate On Cable?

The Patriots game the other night drew 17,500,000 viewers and that made it the most watched program in the history of cable TV.

If true, I wonder why the major political parties would want a prez debate to be "resticted" to cable TV viewers?

Jocelyn Kirsch

I really hope Jocelyn Kirsch and Edward Anderton get long jail terms for their crimes!

Wednesday, December 05, 2007

Ed Snider --- Good at not winning titles

Mr. Snider may be good at making money but he is not good at winning champioships if recent history is any proof!.....When you consider all current owners of major sports teams, I believe Ed Snider, the longtime owner of both the Philadelphia 76ers and Flyers is the current holder of this title ...

"Greatest Number of Years Since My Team Won A Championship"...........

the 76ers last won in 1983 (24 years ago) and the Flyers in 1976 (31 years ago). IMHO, Snider is made of teflon cause he hardly ever gets blamed for these exceptionally long droughts!

Sunday, December 02, 2007

Lofa Tatupu - Is He Invisible To Eagles QB?

Philadelphia Eagles QB threw 3 interceptions today to Seattle Seahawks linebacker, Lofa Tatupu. The last interception was on the 5-yard line when the Eagles were about to win the game with only a minute left.

Right after that, the announcer, Moose Johnston exclaimed that Tatupu must be "invisible" to Feeley because the 3 interceptions were so frigging bad. Feeley had to see Tatupu on each throw hence the invisible comment.

Full disclosure- I am and Eagles fan but Coach Reid and Mcnabb must go- they are joined at the hip and are dragging the team down. The city and the fans need a fresh start. Send them both packing. Reid is the worst clock manager in the league (did you see the end of the 1st half?) and McNabb is over the hill.