Archive for April, 2012

Some Test!

April 30th, 2012 Comments off

A juggler, driving to his next performance, is stopped by the police. “What are those machetes doing in your car?” asks the cop.

“I juggle them in my act.”

“Oh, yeah”? Says the doubtful cop. “Let’s see you do it.”  The juggler gets out and starts tossing and catching the knives. Another man driving by slows down to watch.

“Wow” says the passer-by. “I’m glad I quit drinking. Look at the test they’re giving now!”

What Happened to the Dodo Bird?

April 30th, 2012 Comments off

The dodo bird inhabited the island of Mauritius in the Indian Ocean, where it lived undisturbed for so long that it lost its need and ability to fly. It lived and nested on the ground and ate fruits that had fallen from trees. There were no mammals on the island.

In 1505, the Portuguese became the first humans to set foot on Mauritius. The island quickly became a stopover for ships engaged in the spice trade. Weighing up to 50 pounds, the dodo bird was a welcome source of fresh meat for the sailors. Large numbers of dodo birds were killed for food.

Later, when the Dutch used the island as a penal colony, pigs and monkeys were brought to the island along with the convicts. Many of the ships that came to Mauritius also had uninvited rats aboard, some of which escaped onto the island.

Before humans and other mammals arrived the dodo bird had little to fear from predators. The rats, pigs and monkeys made short work of vulnerable dodo bird eggs in the ground nests.

The combination of human exploitation and introduced species significantly reduced dodo birdpopulations. Within 100 years of the arrival of humans on Mauritius, the once abundant dodo birdwas a rare bird.

The last dodo bird was killed in 1681.

Although the tale of the dodo bird’s demise is well documented, no complete specimens of the bird were preserved; there are only fragments and sketches. The dodo bird is just one of the bird species driven to extinction on Mauritius. Many others were lost in the 19th century when the dense Mauritian forests were converted into tea and sugar plantations.

Of the 45 bird species originally found on Mauritius, only 21 have managed to survive.

Although the dodo bird became extinct in 1681, its story is not over. We are just beginning to understand the effects of its extinction on the ecosystem.

Recently a scientist noticed that a certain species of tree was becoming quite rare on Mauritius. In fact, he noticed that all 13 of the remaining trees of this species were about 300 years old. No new trees had germinated since the late 1600s.

Since the average life span of this tree was about 300 years, the last members of the species were extremely old. They would soon die, and the species would be extinct. Was it just a coincidence that the tree had stopped reproducing 300 years ago and that the dodo bird had become extinct 300 years ago? No.

It turns out that the dodo bird ate the fruit of this tree, and it was only by passing through the dodo’s digestive system that the seeds became active and could grow. Now, more than 300 years after one species became extinct, another was to follow as a direct consequence. Will more follow?

#30 President Calvin Coolidge ‘Silent Cal’

April 30th, 2012 Comments off

Calvin Coolidge (1872-1933) 
Thirtieth President (1923-1929)

When Calvin Coolidge became Warren Harding’s Vice President in 1921, Washington did not know what to make of this reserved onetime governor of Massachusetts. Of “Silent Cal’s” honesty, however, there was no doubt, and his succession to the presidency on Harding’s death in 1923 was a comforting antidote to the unfolding scandals of his predecessor’s administration.

Declaring once that “the chief business of the American people is business,” Coolidge was content to entrust the country’s well-being to private initiative. His hands-off policy suited the public mood well. Many claimed, moreover, that it was largely responsible for the country’s soaring prosperity. Unfortunately, the boom did not last. Shortly after Coolidge left office, the nation plunged into the worst depression in its history. When the original version of this portrait was unveiled in 1929, a critic wrote that Coolidge looked as if he was about to “bite the person . . . who, obviously, had been annoying him.” The aim of artist Ercole Cartotto, however, had been to portray his presidential subject as a “man absorbed by duty and steeled by responsibility.” 

Joseph E. Burgess (1891-1961), after Ercole Cartotto
Oil on canvas, 1956 
National Portrait Gallery, Smithsonian Institution
Gift of the Fraternity of Phi Gamma Delta

3) Can you Name this City? (Answer in Comments)

April 30th, 2012 2 comments

Trivia Question

April 30th, 2012 Comments off

What river carved the Grand Canyon?


. reviR odaroloC ehT

A Prayer for Brothers: Patrick and Will

April 29th, 2012 Comments off


A prayer for Will and Patrick:

Lord I pray that that these two brothers will always find something to laugh about when they are together, and that no matter what problems come their way, they won’t let the problems come between them.

In your son’s name I pray, Amen.

Lifeguard on Duty 24/7

April 29th, 2012 Comments off

Power of Prayer

April 29th, 2012 Comments off

People may refuse our love, or reject our message about Jesus, but they are defenseless against our prayers.


Scott Julian, Senior Pastor of  University Christian Church, Los Angeles

Happy 95th Birthday – My Friend, Ruth Martin

April 29th, 2012 1 comment


Ruth Martin turned 95 years old this month, and she is still enjoying life.  Sharp as a tack, and sweet natured, she is a joy to know.  God bless you Ruth.  You are an inspiration.

What a Day for a Day Dream

April 28th, 2012 1 comment
"What A Day For A Daydream"
The Lovin' Spoonful
What a day for a daydream
What a day for a daydreamin' boy
And I’m lost in a daydream
Dreamin ‘bout my bundle of joy

And even if time ain’t really on my side
It’s one of those days for takin' a walk outside
I’m blowin’ the day to take a walk in the sun
And fall on my face on somebody's new mowed lawn

I've been havin’ a sweet dream
I been dreamin’ since I woke up today
It’s starrin’ me and my sweet dream
Cause she's the one that makes me feel this way

And even if time has passed me by a lot
I couldn't care less about the dues you say I got
Tomorrow I'll pay the dues for droppin’ my load
A pie in the face for bein’ asleep before dawn

And you can be sure that if you're feelin’ right
A daydream will last along into the night
Tomorrow at breakfast you may pick up your ears
Or you may be daydreamin for a thousand years

What a day for a daydream
Custom made for a daydreamin’ boy
And now I’m lost in a daydream
Dreamin ‘bout my bundle of joy
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