A Keeper


Their marriage was good, their dreams focused. Their best friends lived barely a wave away. I can see them now, Dad in trousers, work shirt and a hat; and Mom in a house dress, lawn mower in one hand, and dish-towel in the other. It was the time for fixing things: a curtain rod, the kitchen radio, screen door, the oven door, the hem in a dress. Things we keep.

It was a way of life, and sometimes it made me crazy. All that re-fixing, re-heating leftovers, renewing; I wanted just once to be wasteful. Waste meant affluence. Throwing things away meant you knew there’d always be more.

But when my mother died, and I was standing in that clear morning light in the warmth of the hospital room, I was struck with the pain of learning that sometimes there isn’t any more.

Sometimes, what we care about most gets all used up and goes away…never to return. So … while we have it, it’s best we love it … and care for it … and fix it when it’s broken … and heal it when it’s sick.

This is true: For marriage … and old cars … and children with bad report cards .. dogs and cats with bad hips … and aging parents … and grandparents. We keep them because they are worth it, because we are worth it. Some things we keep, like a best friend that moved away or a classmate we grew up with.

There are just some things that make life important,

like people we know who are special … and so, we keep them close!

I received this from someone who thinks I am a ‘keeper,’ so I’ve sent it to the people I think of in the same way. Now it’s your turn to send this to those people that are “keepers” in your life. Good friends are like stars .. you don’t always see them, but you know they are always there.

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Gotta love those Ohio girls


Gotta love those Ohio girls

Three men and their new wives

Three men were sitting together bragging about how they had given their new wives duties.

The first man had married a woman from Connecticut. He bragged that he
had told his wife she was going to do all the dishes and house cleaning
that needed done at their house.

He said that it took a couple days but on the third day he came home
to a clean house and the dishes were all washed and put away.

The second man had married a woman from Iowa . He bragged that he had
given his wife orders that she was to do all the cleaning, dishes, and
the cooking.

He told them that the first day he didn’t see any results, but the
next day it was better.By the third day, his house was clean, the
dishes were done, and he had a huge dinner on the table.

The third man had married an Ohio girl. He boasted that he told her
that her duties were to keep the house cleaned, dishes washed, lawn
mowed, laundry washed and hot meals on the table for every meal.

He said the first day he didn’t see anything, the second day he didn’t
see anything, but by the third day… most of the swelling had gone
down and he could see a little out of his left eye. enough to fix
himself a bite to eat, load the dishwasher, and telephone a landscaper.


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Maxine on taking down the bird feeder


I bought a bird feeder. I hung
it on my back porch and filled
it with seed. What a beauty of
a bird feeder it is, as I filled it
lovingly with seed. Within a
week we had hundreds of birds
taking advantage of the
continuous flow of free and
easily accessible food.

But then the birds started
building nests in the boards
of the patio, above the table,
and next to the barbecue.?

Then came the poop. It was
everywhere: on the patio tile,
the chairs, the table .

Then some of the birds
turned mean. They would
dive bomb me and try to
peck me even though I had
fed them out of my own

And others birds were
boisterous and loud. They
sat on the feeder and
squawked and screamed at
all hours of the day and night
and demanded that I fill it
when it got low on food.

After a while, I couldn’t even
sit on my own back porch
anymore. So I took down the
bird feeder and in three days
the birds were gone. I cleaned
up their mess and took down
the many nests they had built
all over the patio.

Soon, the back yard was like
it used to be…. quiet, serene
and no one demanding their
rights to a free meal.?

Now let’s see.
Our government gives out
free food, subsidized housing,
free medical care, and free
education and allows anyone
born here to be an automatic

Then the illegals came by the
tens of thousands. Suddenly
our taxes went up to pay for
free services; small apartments
are housing 5 families; you
have to wait 6 hours to be seen
by an emergency room doctor;
your child’s 2nd grade class is
behind other schools because
over half the class doesn’t speak

Corn Flakes now come in a
bilingual box; I have to
“press one” to hear my bank
talk to me in English, and
people waving flags other
than “Old Glory” are
squawking and screaming
in the streets, demanding
more rights and free liberties.

Just my opinion, but maybe
it’s time for the government
to take down the bird feeder.
If you agree, pass it on; if not,
continue cleaning up the poop!

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DEAR READERS: The following poem was written by a longtime reader, the late Jean Wells Rogers. In March of 2002, I printed a poem she had penned titled, “Old-Timer’s Bedtime,” which contained the heart-warming lines: “We’re old and we’re wrinkled, but why should we mind? We sleep like two trees — our branches entwined.”

Today, I’m sharing another one of her treasures because it is both timely and relevant. Enjoy!


No one goes hungry

All people are fed

The oceans are clean

Lake Erie’s not dead.

The Irish aren’t fighting

The Arabs love Jews

The swords are now plowshares

Now ain’t that good news?

The water’s delicious

The air is so clear

On top of a mountain

You see to next year.

Couples stay married

Children are jewels

Sure got you going!

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Why Parents Drink


Why Parents Drink

A father passing by his son’s bedroom was astonished to see that his bed
was nicely made and everything was picked up. Then he saw an envelope,
propped up prominently on the pillow that was addressed to ‘Dad.’

With the worst premonition he opened the envelope with trembling hands
and read
the letter.

Dear Dad:

It is with great regret and sorrow that I’m writing you. I had to elope
with my new girlfriend because I wanted to avoid a scene with mom and
I have been finding real passion with Karen and she is so nice. But I
knew you would not approve of her because of all her piercing, tattoos,
tight motorcycle clothes and the fact that she is much older than I am.
But it’s not only the passion…Dad she’s pregnant.
Karen said that we will be very happy.
She owns a trailer in the woods and has a stack of firewood for t he
whole winter.
We share a dream of having many more children. Karen has opened my eyes
to the fact that marijuana doesn’t really hurt anyone. We’ll be growing
it for ourselves and trading it with the other people that live nearby
for cocaine and ecstasy. In the meantime we will pray that science will
find a cure for AIDS so Karen can get better. She deserves it.

Don’t worry Dad. I’m 15 and I know how to take care of myself. Someday
I’m sure that we will be back to visit so that you can get to
know your grandchildren.

Love, Your Son John

PS. Dad, none of the above is true. I’m over at Tommy’s house. I just
wanted to remind you that there are worse things in life than a
report card that’s in my center desk drawer.

I love you.

Call me when it’s safe to come home.

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