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Sunday, August 31, 2003


Cherokee Wisdom

An old Cherokee is teaching his grandson about life. "A fight is going on inside me," he said to the boy.

"It is a terrible fight and it is between two wolves. One is evil-he is anger, envy, sorrow, regret, greed, arrogance, self-pity, guilt, resentment, inferiority, lies, false pride, superiority and ego. The other is good-he is joy, peace, love, hope, serenity, humility, kindness, benevolence, empathy, generosity, truth, compassion and faith.

This same fight is going on inside you-and inside every other person, too."

The grandson thought about it for a minute and then asked his grandfather which wolf would win.

The old Cherokee simply replied, "The one you feed."

"It is impossible to come into contact with Native American spirituality and not be struck with the immensity of the gratitude expressed." Anne Wilson Schaef

Saturday, August 30, 2003


We're going to print something we received in the mail recently. It's a copy of what appeared in an Ann Landers column of the "Miami Herald". However, we had seen it before and laughed the first time—but not that hearty a laugh. So, when it showed up again, EVE volunteered to write a Neat Women's version and it follows this little ditty. Let us know which you find more appropriate for "women of a certain age."

Senior Sentiments

"A very weird thing has happened. A strange old lady has moved into my house. I have no idea who she is, where she came from or how she got in. I certainly did not invite her.

She is a clever old lady, and manages to keep out of sight for the most part, but whenever I pass a mirror, I catch a glimpse of her. And whenever I look in the mirror to check my appearance, there she is, hogging the whole thing, completely obliterating my gorgeous face and body. This is very rude. If she insists on hanging around, the least she could do is offer to pay part of the rent, but no. Every once in a while I find a dollar bill in a coat pocket or some change under a sofa cushion, but it is not nearly enough.

I don't want to jump to conclusions, but I think she is stealing money from me. I go the ATM and withdraw $100, and a few days later, it's all gone. I certainly don't spend money THAT FAST.

You'd think she would spend some of that money to buy wrinkle cream. Lord knows she needs it. And money isn't the only thing I think she is stealing. Food seems to disappear at an alarming rate—especially the good stuff like ice cream, cookies, and candy. I can't seem to keep that stuff in the house anymore. She must have a real sweet tooth, but she'd better watch it, because she is really packing on the pounds. I suspect she realizes this, and to make herself feel better she is tampering with my scale to make me think I am putting on weight, too.

For an old lady she is quite childish. She likes to play nasty games, like going into my closets when I'm not home and altering my clothes so they don't fit. She also fiddles with my VCR so it does not record what I have correctly programmed.

She has found other imaginative ways to annoy me. She gets into my mail, newspapers and magazines before I do, and blurs the print so I can't read it. And she has done something sinister to the volume controls on my TV, radio and telephone. Now, all I hear are mumbles and whispers.

She has done other things—like make my stairs steeper, my vacuum cleaner heavier and all my knobs and faucets harder to turn. Lately, she has been fooling with my groceries before I put them away, applying glue to the lids, making it almost impossible for me to open the jars.

She has taken the fun out of shopping. When I try something on, she stands in front of the dressing room mirror and monopolizes it. She looks ridiculous in some of those outfits.

Just when I thought she couldn't get any meaner, she proved me wrong. She came along when I went to get my picture taken for my driver's license, and just as the camera shutter clicked, she jumped in front of me! No one is going to believe that the picture of that old lady is me."

OK—it may be moderately funny, depending on your perspective. And, here's EVE's view:

Neat Women Nuggets

"A very interesting thing has happened. An interesting new woman has moved into my house and though I'm not certain where she came from or how she got here, I'm finding it quite intriguing to have her around and enjoy getting better acquainted.

I notice her presence when I look in the mirror—she resembles me but looks a bit more approachable and engaging than I think I ever did. Her appearance may not "turn heads," but is more inviting as someone who would be worth knowing.

She seems a lot more relaxed about money than I recall ever being. She is prudent but willing to splurge on herself when she has a little extra—for fun things—like chocolate covered cherries or a hazelnut latte.

But, she's also more of an activist than I was comfortable being. She became so incensed about having to pay a fee to get money out of her bank's ATM machine that she wrote to her congressional representative, protesting such an outrageous charge. After all, if she withdraws some cash and doesn't have to pay a fee to do it---she's able to afford a nice Starbucks cup of Java more often.

She laughs a lot and has some hard-earned laugh lines that she wears proudly when she looks at her reflection. And, she literally giggles when she treats us to something divine like a couple of Dove bars. Clearly, she's comfortable with her body and not about to fret over a few extra pounds.

She chuckles about how her arms got shorter and shorter to the point that she now wears bifocals but thinks they give her that studious look she used to have to work to achieve. And she and her friends are often convulsed with guffaws about how "technologically challenged" they are in this age of computers and VCR's and sound systems that make their old stereos look and sound like a horse and buggy.

This new woman seems so much more confident about who she is and makes no apologies for whatever she may feel like wearing, saying or doing. I overheard her talking about the long journey she took to get to where she is now and how proud she feels that she survived the struggles on that long road and prevailed in spite of everything.

This new woman has clearly decided to Now Enjoy All Things Women May Officially Ever Need or Women Overcoming Middle-age May Ever Need. I say, more power to her and I hope she's here to stay!! She is one of many NEAT WOMEN I enjoy having in my life now.

"Do not deprive me of my age. I have earned it." Mary Sarton

"I am luminous with age." Meridel Le Sueur

"There is no old age. There is, as there always was, just you." Carol Matthau

Friday, August 29, 2003


"Two seeds lay side by side in the fertile spring soil. The first seed said, "I want to grow! I want to send my roots deep into the soil beneath me, and thrust my sprouts through the earth's crust above me…I want to unfurl my tender buds like banners to announce the arrival of spring…I want to feel the warmth of the sun on my face and the blessings of the morning on my petals!"

And so she grew.

The second seed said, "I am afraid. If I send my roots into the ground below, I don't know what I will encounter in the dark. If I push my way through the hard soil above me I may damage my delicate sprouts…what if I let my buds open and a snail tries to eat them? And if I were to open my blossoms, a small child may pull me from the ground.

No, it is much better to wait until it is safe."

And so she waited.

A yard hen scratching around in the early spring ground for food found the waiting seed and promptly ate it."

Moral of the Story
Those of us who refuse to risk and grow get swallowed up by life. Patty Hansen, from Chicken Soup for the Soul

"The breezes at dawn have secrets to tell you.
Don't go back to sleep!
You must ask for what you really want.
Don't go back to sleep!
People are going back and forth
Across the doorsill where the two worlds touch,
The door is round and open.
Don't go back to sleep!"
By RUMI, Earth Prayers From Around the World

"The fullness of life is in the hazards of life." Edith Hamilton


Thursday, August 28, 2003

Women have often played important roles in history's major events. For example, on this date in 1862 Belle Boyd was released from Old Capital Prison in Washington, DC.

Long considered the most devastating war in American History, 3 million fought - 600,000 died, and it was the only war fought on American soil by Americans. Some speculate that it is for those reasons we have always been fascinated with The Civil War. Hundreds of books, movies and documentaries have (and are) being created about this war.

One of the most famous of Confederate spies, Belle Boyd served the Confederate forces in the Shenandoah Valley. Born in Martinsburg--now part of West Virginia--she operated her spying operations from her fathers hotel in Front Royal, providing information to Generals Turner Ashby and "Stonewall" Jackson during the spring 1862 campaign in the Valley.

Belle Boyd attended Mount Washington Female College in Baltimore, Maryland, from 1856 to 1860. In Martinsburg, Virginia, at the outbreak of the Civil War, she joined in fund-raising activities on behalf of the Confederacy. When Union forces occupied the town in July 1861, she associated freely with officers, gleaning bits of military information that she sent by messenger to Confederate authorities. She and her mother denied entry to Union soldiers who wanted to raise a flag over their house in Martinsburg. When one of the soldiers tried to force his way in, Belle Boyd shot and killed him. She was tried and was acquitted on a defense of justifiable homicide.

Union officers under the command of General James Shields were quartered in the same residence as Boyd in Front Royal, and Boyd overheard their plans for a withdrawal from that town. She undertook a hazardous journey through the lines to inform General T.J. "Stonewall" Jackson of the Union plans to destroy the town's bridges as part of their retreat. This was the only major success in intelligence work she is known to have had. In 1862 Boyd was arrested on a warrant signed by U.S. Secretary of War Edwin Stanton; she was eventually released as part of an exchange of prisoners. Arrested again after her return to Union-held Martinsburg, Boyd was again released, in 1863, after a bout with typhoid fever in prison. Her usefulness in the North at an end, she was thenceforth employed as a courier.

In 1866 she turned to the stage, making her debut in The Lady of Lyons in Manchester and then returning to the United States to make a tour of the South. She appeared in New York in The Honeymoon in 1868. She retired the following year, but in 1886, her third marriage having brought her into financial difficulties, she began a career as a lecturer on her own exploits. Boyd died during a speaking tour in Wisconsin.

On this day in 1917, 10 suffragists reportedly were arrested as they picketed the White House. The year 1917 witnessed numerous victories for the women struggling to achieve the right to vote. Here is a timeline for that period:

1917: New York State adopts woman suffrage.

January 10, 1917: National Woman's Party (NWP) pickets appear in front of the White House holding aloft tow banners: "Mr. President, What Will You Do for Woman Suffrage?" and "How Long Must Women Wait For Liberty?" Sentinels remain stationed there permanently regardless of weather or violent public response, with hourly changes of shift.

April 2, 1917: Jeannette Rankin of Montana is formally seated in the U.S. House of Representatives, the first woman elected to Congress.

June 22, 1917: Arrests of the NWP pickets begin on charges of obstructing traffic. Subsequent pickets are sentenced to up to six months in jail. Their inhumane treatment in jail creates a cadre of martyrs for the suffrage cause.

November 27, 28, 1917: In response to public outcry and jailer's inability to stop the NWP pickets' hunger strikes, the government unconditionally releases the pickets.


"For two generations groups of women have given their lives and their fortunes to secure the vote for the sex and hundreds of thousands of other women are now giving all the time at their command. No class of men in our own or any other country has made one-tenth the effort nor sacrificed one-tenth as much for the vote." Carrie Chapman Catt (1917)

Wednesday, August 27, 2003


I sat on a porch in Waycross, Georgia on a summer day, drinking iced tea and visiting with my Mother. "Don't forget your girlfriends," Mother advised, clinking the ice cubes in her glass. "No matter how much you love your husband, you are still going to need girlfriends. Remember to go places with them now and then; do things with them. And remember that girlfriends are not only friends, but sisters, daughters and other relatives too."

What a funny piece of advice, I thought. Hadn't I just gotten married? Hadn't I just joined the couple-world? I was now a married woman, for goodness sake, not a young girl who needed girlfriends. But I listened to my Mom.

I kept contact with my girlfriends and made more each year. As the years tumbled by, one after another, gradually I came to understand that Mom really knew what she was talking about.

Here is what I know about Girlfriends:

Girlfriends bring casseroles and scrub your bathroom when you need help.

Girlfriends keep your children and keep your secrets.

Girlfriends give advice when you ask for it. Sometimes you take it, sometimes you don't.

Girlfriends don't always tell you that you're right, but they're usually honest.

Girlfriends still love you, even when they don't agree with your choices.

Girlfriends laugh with you, and you don't need canned jokes to start the laughter.

Girlfriends pull you out of jams.

Girlfriends will give a party for your son or daughter when they get married or have a baby, in whichever order that comes!

Girlfriends are there for you, in an instant and when the hard times come.

Girlfriends listen when you lose a job or a friend.

Girlfriends listen when your children break your heart.

Girlfriends listen when your parents' minds and bodies fail.

Girlfriends cry with you when someone you loved dies.

My daughters, sisters, family, and friends bless my life!

When we began this adventure we had no idea of the incredible joys or sorrows that lay ahead. Nor did we know how much we would need each other.

Pass this on to your girlfriends/sisters/daughters/cousins. We just did. You will find a Send To A Friend form at the bottom of this page.


"There is no friend like someone who has known you since you were five." Anne Stevenson

Tuesday, August 26, 2003

Ten Things Men Understand About Women











Just smile and send it on!

Subject: Platitudes

1. Do not walk behind me, for I may not lead. Do not walk ahead of me, for I may not follow. Do not walk beside me, either. Just leave me the heck alone.

2. The journey of a thousand miles begins with a broken fan belt and a leaky tire.

3. It's always darkest before dawn. So if you're going to steal the neighbor's newspaper that's the time to do it.

4. We lost it!

5. We are born naked, wet, and hungry. Then things get worse.

6. No one is listening until you make a mistake.

7. Always remember you're unique, just like everyone else.

8. Never test the depth of the water with both feet.

9. It may be your sole purpose in life is simply to serve as a warning to others.

10. It is far more impressive when others discover your good qualities without your help.

11. If you think nobody cares if you're alive, try missing a couple of car payments.

12. If you tell the truth, you don't have to remember anything.

13. If you lend someone $20, and never see that person again; it was probably worth it.

14. Good judgment comes from bad experience and a lot of that comes from bad judgment.

15. The quickest way to double you money is to fold it in half and put it back in your pocket.

16. Timing has an awful lot to do with the outcome of a rain dance.

17. A closed mouth gathers no foot.

18. Duct tape is like the Force, it has a light side and a dark side and it holds the universe together.

19. Eagles may soar, but weasels don't get sucked into jet engines.

20. There are two theories to arguing with women. Neither one works.

21. Never miss a good chance to shut up.

22. Generally speaking, you aren't learning much when your mouth is moving.

23. Before you criticize someone, you should walk a mile in their shoes. That way, when you criticize them, you're a mile away and you have their shoes.

24. Experience is something you don't get until just after you need it.

25. Don't be irreplaceable; if you can't be replaced, you can't be promoted.

"Platitudes? Yes, there are platitudes. Platitudes are there because they are true." Margaret Thatcher

Monday, August 25, 2003

Sometimes it's just hard to know what to do with a Monday. Particularly, at this time of year. Summer is pretty much over and fall is practically here. This moment in time sort of hangs in front of us like a droopy curtain. It's seasonal limbo….not quite finished with the last, not exactly ready for the next. And, like an ominous cloud on the landscape the big MNF looms over us.

At least that's how EVE feels about the dreaded Monday Night Football. She's rather antagonistic about football. There have already been some televised games. Who can get excited about a bunch of guys, moving ever so slowly, most of the time, up and down a field with a piece of pigskin that spectators can barely see for much of the game? Oh, it's absolutely un-American to harbor these thoughts but she has trouble keeping quiet about it….or anything else, come to think of it.

It might also have something to do with the cheerleaders. Do we really have to watch scantily clad, almost always fit, and perky to die for young women leaping around? OK, the question is actually, do we have to enjoy looking at them? EVE thinks not.

Occasionally, she seeks her husband's input on topics for Today's Treasure—a very risky proposition considering they have recently agreed that after more than 30+ years of marriage, the sole thing they agree on is that they never agree about anything. They only went out on 8 dates before getting engaged and married shortly thereafter, so it's taken them this long to figure out what creates the "chemistry"—or, spontaneous combustion would be another way of putting it.

But, back to football. "Tell me something funny about football," EVE asked her husband. "You're asking ME to think of something funny about football?" he exclaimed. Then for good measure, he added, "You'd better be careful because a lot of women really like football!" Well, EVE knows that but it doesn't change her opinion. Furthermore, since she was born in Kentucky, basketball is a subject she can carry on about for hours. In fact, she's already counting down to the start of the basketball season, which is only a mere 5 months away.

In desperation, EVE turned to the joke books for help and this is what she came up with:
"A college senior pointed to a substitute going into a football game and said to his date, "I expect that guy to be our best man next year." "Oh, dear," she blushed. "This is so sudden."

"The college football coach called practice to a halt to "chew out" one of his big freshman tackles for making a stupid play. Head bowed, the big tackle stood in silence as the coach called him every kind of name, topping off the blast with, "What's your IQ anyway?" Startled, the tackle looked up, thought for a moment, then answered, "20/20."

You know something? There really isn't much about football that is funny! But we can always count on our heroine, Erma Bombeck, who announced, "If a man watches three football games in a row, he should be declared legally dead!" Go Erma!

Do you have a good football story or joke? Send it to and one will be selected by an impartial panel of judges (which will not include EVE, her husband, or anyone directly involved with Neat Women Inc), and will each receive a NEAT WOMEN INC mug to put her hot cocoa in for watching football games on cold days. Since we would like to use them, if there is a credit that should be attached, please include that information. We'll announce the winner in two weeks.


"The stronger women get, the more men love football." Mariah Burton Nelson

Sunday, August 24, 2003



I am God.
Today I will be handling all of your problems.
Please remember that I do not need your help.
If life happens to deliver a situation to you
That you cannot handle, do not attempt to resolve it.
Kindly put it in the SFGTD (something for God to do) box.
It will be addressed in My time, not yours.
Once the matter is placed into the box, do not
Hold onto it.
If you find yourself stuck in traffic, don't
Despair. There are people in this world for whom
Driving is an unheard of privilege.
Should you have a bad day at work; Think of the
Person who has been out of work for years.
Should you despair over a relationship gone bad;
Think of the person who has never known what it's like
To love and be loved in return.
Should you grieve the passing of another weekend;
Think of the woman in dire straits, working twelve hours
A day, seven days a week to feed her children.
Should your car break down, leaving you miles Away from assistance;
Think of the paraplegic who would love the
Opportunity to take that walk.
Should you notice a new gray hair in the mirror;
Think of the cancer patient in chemo who wishes
She had hair to examine.
Should you find yourself at a loss and pondering
What life is all about, asking what is my purpose?
Be thankful. There are those who didn't live
Long enough to get the opportunity.
Should you find yourself the victim of other
People's bitterness, ignorance, smallness or insecurities;
Remember, things could be worse. You could be them!

This is only a partial list of something titled, Instructions for Life:
Give people more than they expect and do it cheerfully
Memorize your favorite poem
When you say, "I'm sorry," look the person in the eye
Never laugh at anyone's dreams. People who don't have dreams, don't have much
Don't judge people by their relatives
Talk slowly but think quickly
When you lose, don't lose the lesson.
Remember the three R's: Respect for self; Respect for others; Responsibility for all your actions
Spend some time alone
Open your arms to change, but don't let go of your values
Remember that silence is sometimes the best answer
Live a good, honorable life. Then when you get older and think back, you'll enjoy it a second time
Trust in God, but lock you car

"How can God direct our steps if we're not taking any?" Sarah Leah Grafstein

Saturday, August 23, 2003


Chevy Nova Award

These are the nominees for the Chevy Nova Award. This is given out in honor of the GM's fiasco in trying to market this car in Central and South America. "No va" means, of course, in Spanish, "it doesn't go".

1. The Dairy Association's huge success with the campaign "Got Milk?" prompted them to expand advertising to Mexico. It was soon brought to their attention the Spanish translation read "Are you lactating?"

2. Coors put its slogan, "Turn It Loose," into Spanish, where it was read as "Suffer From Diarrhea."

3. Scandinavian vacuum manufacturer Electrolux used the following in an American campaign: "Nothing sucks like an Electrolux."

4. Clairol introduced the "Mist Stick," a curling iron, into Germany only to find out that "mist" is slang for manure. Not too many people had use for the "Manure Stick."

5. When Gerber started selling baby food in Africa, they used the same packaging as in the US, with the smiling baby on the label. Later they learned that in Africa, companies routinely put pictures on the labels of what's inside, since many people can't read.

6. Colgate introduced a toothpaste in France called Cue, the name of a notorious porno magazine.

7. An American T-shirt maker in Miami printed shirts for the Spanish market which promoted the Pope's visit. Instead of "I saw the Pope" (el Papa), the shirts read "I Saw the Potato" (la papa).

8. Pepsi's "Come Alive With the Pepsi Generation" translated into "Pepsi Brings Your Ancestors Back From the Grave" in Chinese.

9. The Coca-Cola name in China was first read as "Kekoukela", meaning "Bite the wax tadpole" or "female horse stuffed with wax", depending on the dialect. Coke then researched 40,000 characters to find a phonetic equivalent "kokou kole", translating into "happiness in the mouth."

10. Frank Perdue's chicken slogan, "It takes a strong man to make a tender chicken" was translated into Spanish as "it takes an aroused man to make a chicken affectionate."

11. When Parker Pen marketed a ball-point pen in Mexico, its ads were supposed to have read, "It won't leak in your pocket and embarrass you." The company thought that the word "embarazar" (to impregnate) meant to embarrass, so the ad read: "It won't leak in your pocket and make you pregnant!"

12. When American Airlines wanted to advertise its new leather first class seats in the Mexican market, it translated its "Fly In Leather" campaign literally, which meant "Fly Naked" (vuela en cuero) in Spanish!

**************** BIZARRE STORY OF THE WEEK *****************

---------- "Not Guilty" Tattoo Pegs Man Guilty ------------

Police in Long Beach, Miss., say a would-be robber was apprehended by a police detective because of a distinctive tattoo. The man rushed in to a convenience store demanding $200 he had allegedly left on the counter earlier. When the cashier told him all the money was already locked in the safe he pulled a gun, but ran when more customers entered the store. The clerk gave police a description, noting his large tattoo bearing the words: "NOT GUILTY." The next morning the man went to the same store, still demanding his money. A detective was there doing some shopping and recognized the tattoo from an "all points bulletin." The man was arrested on a charge of attempted armed robbery. "His tattoo stuck out like a sore thumb," the officer told the Sun Herald newspaper. "He might as well have had "STUPID" printed on his forehead."

Rules to live by for computer users from the Tech Support Department:
(Before reading this, we urge you to remember that the people or persons who wrote this had their tongues firmly planted in their cheeks!)

1. Don't write anything down. Ever. We can play back the error messages from here.

2. When an I.T. person says he's coming right over, go for    coffee. It's nothing for us to remember 3,000 screen saver passwords.

3. When you call us to have your computer moved, be sure to leave it buried under half a ton of postcards, baby pictures, stuffed animals, dried flowers, bowling trophies and Popsicle art. We don't have a life, and we find it deeply moving to catch a fleeting glimpse of yours.

4. When you call the help desk, state what you want, not what's keeping you from getting it. We don't need to know that you can't get into your mail because your computer won't power on at all.

5. Don't put your phone extension in your e-mails to the help desk. We need to keep an eye on the address book performance.

6. When I.T. support sends you an e-mail with high importance, delete it at once. We're just testing the public groups.

7. When an I.T. person is eating lunch in his cube, walk right in and spill your guts right out. We exist only to serve.

8. When an I.T. person is having a smoke outside, ask him a computer question. The only reason why we smoke at all is to ferret out those clients who don't have e-mail or a telephone line.

9. Send urgent email all in uppercase. The mail server picks it up and flags it as a rush delivery.

10. When you call an I.T. person's direct line, press 5 to skip the bilingual greeting that says he's out of town for a week, record your message and wait exactly 24 hours before you send an email straight to the director because no one ever returned your call. You're  entitled to common     courtesy.

"The stems of grievance put down their heavy roots / And by the end of summer crack the pavement." Josephine Miles

Friday, August 22, 2003


The 92-year-old, petite, well-poised and proud lady, who is fully dressed each morning by eight o'clock, with her hair fashionably coiffed and makeup perfectly applied, even though she is legally blind, moved to a nursing home today. Her husband of 70 years recently passed away, making the move necessary. After many hours of waiting patiently in the lobby of the nursing home, she smiled sweetly when told her room was ready.

As she maneuvered her walker to the elevator, I provided a visual description of her tiny room, including the eyelet sheets that had been hung on her window. "I love it," she stated with the enthusiasm of an eight-year-old having just been presented with a new puppy. "Mrs. Jones, you haven't seen the room .... just wait." "That doesn't have anything to do with it," she replied.

"Happiness is something you decide on ahead of time. Whether I like my room or not doesn't depend on how the furniture is arranged ... it's how I arrange my mind. I already decided to love it. It's a decision I make every morning when I wake up. I have a choice; I can spend the day in bed recounting the difficulty I have with the parts of my body that no longer work, or get out of bed and be thankful for the ones that do. Each day is a gift, and as long as my eyes open I'll focus on the new day and all the happy memories I've stored away ... just for this time in my life."

Old age is like a bank account ... you withdraw from what you've Put in..

So, consider depositing a lot of happiness in the bank account of memories…..


"Back on its golden hinges / The gate of Memory swings, / And my heart goes into the garden / And walks with the olden things." Ella Wheeler Wilcox

Thursday, August 21, 2003

A couple of items from the archives which we consider worth revisiting. The first is a little silly, then a lot serious….exactly the right combination when dealing with the topic of age!

When I was in my younger days,
I weighed a  few pounds less,
I needn't hold my tummy in
To wear a belted  dress.
But now that I am older,
I've set my body  free;
There's the comfort of elastic
Where once my waist would  be.
The inventor of those high-heeled shoes
My feet  have not forgiven;
I have to wear a size nine now,
When I used  to wear a seven.
And how about those pantyhose-
They're sized by weight, you see,
So how come when I put them  on,
The crotch is at my knees?
I need to wear these  glasses
As the print was getting smaller;
And it wasn't very  long ago
I know that I was taller.
Though my hair has  turned to silver
And my skin no longer fits,
On the inside,  I'm the same old me,
Just the outside's changed a bit.

On a positive note, I've learned that no matter what happens, or  how bad it seems today, life does go on, and it will be better  tomorrow. I've learned that you can tell a lot about a person by the way  he/she  handles these three things: a rainy day, lost luggage, and tangled  Christmas tree lights. I've learned that regardless of your relationship with your parents, you'll miss them when they're gone from your life. I've learned that making a "living" is not the same thing as making a "life." I've learned that life sometimes gives you a second chance. I've learned that you shouldn't go through life with a catcher's  mitt on both hands. You need to be able to throw something back. I've learned that if you pursue happiness, it will elude you. But  if you focus on your family, your friends, the needs of others,  your  work  and doing the very best you can, happiness will find you. I've learned that whenever I decide something with an open heart,  I usually make the right decision. I've learned that even when I have pains, I don't have to be  one. I've learned that every day you should reach out and  touch someone. People love that human touch- holding hands, a warm  hug,  or  just a friendly pat on the back. I've learned that I still have a lot to learn. I've learned that you should pass this on to someone you care about.  I  just did.

Sometimes they just need a little something to make them  smile. I've learned that people will forget what you said,  people will  forget what you did, but people will never forget how you  made  them  feel.

The Mountain Story

"A son and his father were walking on the mountains.
Suddenly, his son falls, hurts himself and screams: "AAAhhhhhhhhhhh!!!"
To his surprise, he hears the voice repeating, somewhere in the mountain:
Curious, he yells: "Who are you?"
He receives the answer: "Who are you?"
And then he screams to the mountain: "I admire you!"
The voice answers: "I admire you!"
Angered at the response, he screams: "Coward!"
He receives the answer: "Coward!"
He looks to his father and asks: "What's going on?"
The father smiles and says: "My son, pay attention."
Again the man screams: "You are a champion!"
The voice answers: "You are a champion!"
The boy is surprised, but does not understand.
Then the father explains: "People call this ECHO, but really this is LIFE.
It gives you back everything you say or do.
Our life is simply a reflection of our actions.
If you want more love in the world, create more love in your heart.
If you want more competence in your team, improve your competence.
This relationship applies to everything, in all aspects of life;
Life will give you back everything you have given to it."

-- Unknown Author


"Life is change: growth is optional." Karen Kaiser Clark

Wednesday, August 20, 2003

Ah, so much chocolate and so little time to eat it all! Eve's waxes eloquent on the subject at the mere site of something so insignificant as an M&M.; Warning to all chocolate lovers…do not proceed if you share that weakness of succumbing to the slightest mention of the word. And, for those who have no interest in chocolate….we extend our condolences and suggest you may want to move on to another page at Neat Women Inc today. This is CLO (Chocolate Lovers Only) Day at NWI. We'll start with:

Chocolate Rules

If you've got melted chocolate all over your hands, you're eating it too slowly.

Chocolate covered raisins, cherries, orange slices & strawberries all count as fruit, so eat as many as you want.

The problem: How to get 2 pounds of chocolate home from the store in hot car.
The solution: Eat it in the parking lot.

Diet tip: Eat a chocolate bar before each meal. It'll take the edge off your appetite and you'll eat less.

A nice box of chocolates can provide your total daily intake of calories in one place. Isn't that handy?

If you can't eat all your chocolate, it will keep in the freezer. But, if you can't eat all your chocolate, what is wrong with you?

If calories are an issue, store your chocolate on top of the fridge. Calories are afraid of heights, and they will jump out of the chocolate to protect themselves.

If you eat equal amounts of dark chocolate and white chocolate is that a balanced diet?

Money talks. Chocolate sings.

Chocolate has many preservatives. Preservatives make you look younger.

Q. Why is there no such organization as Chocoholics Anonymous?
A. Because no one wants to quit.

If not for chocolate, there would be no need for control top pantyhose. An entire garment industry would be devastated.

Put "eat chocolate" at the top of your list of things to do today. That way, at least you'll get one thing done.

And from: Categories: Desserts, Chocolate

Are you a chocolate lover? Well here's a delicious recipe for LAYERED CHOCOLATE BARS that I bet you don't have in your collection yet. Hang on to it for when your next craving creeps up. Some people may question the pretzels but stick with me on this makes it! ENJOY!


1-1/2 c. finely crushed thin pretzels
3/4 c. (1-1/2 sticks) butter or margarine, melted
1 can (14 oz) sweetened condensed milk (not evaporated milk)
4 bars (4 oz) Unsweetened Baking Chocolate, broken into pieces
2 c. Campfire miniature marshmallows
1 c. Mounds Sweetened Coconut Flakes
1 c. coarsely chopped pecans
4 bars (4 oz) Semi-Sweet Baking Chocolate, broken into pieces
1 Tbsp. shortening

Heat oven to 350 degrees. Combine pretzels and melted butter in small bowl; press evenly into bottom of 13x9-inch baking pan. Place sweetened condensed milk and unsweetened chocolate in small microwave-safe bowl. Microwave at HIGH 1 to 1-1/2 minutes or until mixture is melted and smooth when stirred. Pour over pretzel layer in pan. Top with marshmallows, coconut and pecans; press firmly down onto chocolate layer. Bake 25 to 30 minutes or until lightly browned; cool completely in pan on wire rack. Melt semi-sweet chocolate and shortening in small microwave-safe bowl at HIGH for 1 minute or until melted when stirred; drizzle over entire top. Refrigerate 15 minutes or until set. Cut into bars.

<<<<<<<<<<<<<< MARZEE's CORNER >>>>>>>>>>>>>>>


Depending on what is added to (or removed from) the chocolate liquor, different flavors and varieties of chocolate are produced. Each has a different chemical make-up, the differences are not solely in the taste. Be sure, therefore, to use the kind the recipe calls for, as different varieties will react differently to heat and moisture.

* Unsweetened or Baking chocolate is simply cooled, hardened chocolate liquor. It is used primarily as an ingredient in recipes, or as a garnish.

* Semi-sweet chocolate is also used primarily in recipes. It has extra cocoa butter and sugar added. Sweet cooking chocolate is basically the same, with more sugar for taste.

* Milk chocolate is chocolate liquor with extra cocoa butter, sugar, milk and vanilla added. This is the most popular form for chocolate. It is primarily an eating chocolate.

* Cocoa is chocolate liquor with much of the cocoa butter removed, creating a fine powder. It can pick up moisture and odors from other products, so you should keep cocoa in a cool, dry place, tightly covered.

* White chocolate is somewhat of a misnomer. In the United States, in order to be legally called 'chocolate' a product must contain cocoa solids. White chocolate does not contain these solids, which leaves it a smooth ivory or beige color. Real white chocolate is primarily cocoa butter, sugar, milk and vanilla. There are some products on the market that call themselves white chocolate, but are made with vegetable oils instead of cocoa butter. Check the label to avoid these cheap imitations. White chocolate is the most fragile form of chocolate; pay close attention to it while heating or melting it.


"Chocolate is no ordinary food. It is not thing you can take or leave, something you like only moderately. You don't LIKE chocolate. You don't even LOVE chocolate. Chocolate is something you have an AFFAIR with." Geneen Roth

Tuesday, August 19, 2003

For those the "golf widows" of summer—whether maxed out on the TV coverage or simply tired of cleaning up the grass stained slacks, etc. we offer the following, written by a good friend of Neat Women Inc's who currently resides in Louisville, Kentucky….where the PGA Tournament was held a couple of years ago:


Many years ago, my husband, "took a mistress," but it's never bothered me. If his paramour were someone like Minnie Driver, I'd be upset or worse yet, enraged. However, this lover's name is simply Driver and she travels with a huge entourage, hence, they are never even alone together. She goes nowhere without all her sisters…it's hard to remember every name but I know there's putter, several irons, and a couple of woods. The only time "wedge" appears is when I've endured day upon day of the TV tuned to what is now a yearlong expose of the affairs so many other men have with members of this particular family!

I've repeatedly been told that golf is a mind game. Frankly, it makes sense—although, for the most part I do not "mind" my husband's total submersion in this activity. I do know that when he's had a "good" game, his mind is in the clouds and when it's been a bad round, well, let's just say his mind (along with his mouth) is noticeably foul.

Personally, I don't play golf. Nor do I understand it, watch it, and with all due respect to the women of the LPGA (Ladies Professional Golf Association), I could really care less! I'm totally uninterested in ever learning anymore than I already know…which is very little, because I still get scratches, handicaps, and mulligans confused. I know the first is not used to relieve an itch, the second is not about a disability and depending on the numbers attached to it, can be something to boast about and the last has nothing whatsoever to do with stew.

Having established my attitude toward a game which, if it's been on television for hours at my house, has never served as anything more than a good cure for my insomnia, I have a confession. I did get excited last week. That's when a tiger arrived, not on little cat's paws of the poet's variety, but amidst more fanfare and hoopla than even a favorite thoroughbred on Derby Day can expect. My enthusiasm, which was mild by comparison, to the rest of the population, was magnified one hundred times over by the sheer joy of my husband, son and even my daughter-in-law. They, and hundreds upon hundreds of others, gladly climbed aboard the large buses, which transported them in a few short minutes to the mystical kingdom of Valhalla.

Louisville is more than a little accustomed to turning out the splendor and tuning up the volume for breath-taking events. The Kentucky Derby is a year round enterprise here. More recently, The Breeder's Cup arrived (only billionaires allowed—Churchill Downs has a whole section referred to as Millionaire's Row where the wealthy and the famous view the most important two minutes in sports annually—and the billionaires, I suppose begrudgingly, are consigned to "making do" with that area). The Tiger's arrival prompted just as much enthusiasm, or more, among the locals. The daily paper, taking note that the State Fair is occurring simultaneously, devoted an entire section to, "Fairway vs. Fair Way." Local Courier-Journal columnist, C. Ray Hall, outdid himself on the piece, "How to tell if you're at the State Fair or the PGA." "The PGA is in town. Our cultural cup runneth over. So does our agricultural cup. The limousine crowd vs. the Limousin crowd. The visors-and-Viagara set vs. the eternal verities and Vermont size vegetables set. Doglegs vs. corn dogs. Oldsmobiles (official car of the PGA) vs. old mobiles, unofficial car of the State Fair. The PGA's marvelous menagerie has a Tiger, a Bear, a Shark, and a Walrus. In the highly unlikely event you find yourself torn between the fairway and the fair way, here's a handy guide to this cataclysmic clash of cultures." It was virtually impossible to select the "best of the list" but these will give you an idea:


Worldly sophisticates
In town frm London, Paris, and Frankfurt
Trophy wives
The big guy is named Tiger
John Daly
Your PGA souvenir shirt cost $84
Derby without horses
Big Bertha is your driver

Worldly sophisticates
In town from London, Paris, Frankfurt, Kentucky
Trophy hives
Chicks (Dixie)
The big guy is named Freddy Farm Bureau
Your car cost $84
Horses without Derby
Big Bertha is your date

Well, you get the picture! Which reminds me—Big Bertha must be Driver's youngest sister because she came late to the party with my husband. I vaguely recall that he said something about, no self-respecting player would be without her, and exhibited not one bit of remorse about casting aside the original Driver.

I did not journey to the holy land of Valhalla. As the crow flies, it's only about two miles from my house and I'm not very good with crowds so that was close enough. My husband described it in such vivid detail that I was satisfied viewing the occasion in the comfort of my air-conditioned living room (I do intense heat more poorly even than crowds and the combination is something I avoid like the plague). I tried not to laugh out loud when my spouse came home and reported that our daughter in law had it on good authority that Tiger had been spotted in two different Macdonald's close by and each time ordered a Quarter Pounder with cheese. I accepted at face value his description of the corporate, so-called big "tents", which a man who served in Korea for two years pronounced, was a gross misnomer.

The Tiger's gone and calm has returned. By one, nerve wracking, nail-biting stroke, the Tiger prevailed and went home the winner. My husband tried to convince me that the $900,000 was irrelevant—only the Wanamaker Trophy mattered. Whatever! The fall meet at Churchill Downs will seem horribly anti-climatic. There's always spring—to paraphrase Bogeys' (the man not the hole score) famous line in Casablanca, "We'll always have Paris." When the dogwood, azaleas, and magnolia begin to bloom in their annual profusion of color and heavenly scents, we'll pull ourselves together and rally round the Derby festivities. No one will ever forget, however, the first time the Tiger came to our town and we'll harbor the hope that he'll return.

He is an extraordinary young man, both personally and professionally. My only compliant is that, when I contemplate all he has achieved, and hear someone say, "And, he's only 26 years old," I feel uncharacteristically ancient. I seldom mind the "chronology" issue but the thought of this icon who is barely into his second decade—it makes me feel "older than dirt". My greatest comfort, though, is knowing that when he does make a repeat performance here, he'll be at least a couple of years older! That is reassuring somehow.


"Night after night I went to sleep murmuring, 'Tomorrow I will be easy, strong, quick, supple, accurate, dashing and self-controlled all at once!' For not less than this is necessary in the Game of Life called Golf." Ethel Smyth

Sunday, August 17, 2003



Throughout the ages, people have searched for the meaning of love. But even the great philosophers, with their profound definitions, could not fully touch its true essence. In a survey, 4 to 8 year-old kids shared their views on love. But what do little kids know about love? Read on and be surprised that despite their young and innocent minds, kids already have a simple but deep grasp of that four-letter word:

Love is that first feeling you feel before all the bad stuff gets in the way.

When my grandmother got arthritis, she couldn't bend over to paint her toenails anymore. So my grandfather does it for her all the time, even when his hands got arthritis, too. That's love.

When someone loves you, the way she says your name is different. You know that your name is safe in her mouth.

If life is 'A,' love is the whole alphabet.

Love is when you go out to eat and give somebody most of your french fries without making them give you any of theirs.

Love is when someone hurts you. And you get so mad but you don't yell at him because you know it would hurt his feelings.

Love is what makes you smile when you're tired.

Love is when my mommy makes coffee for my daddy then she takes a sip before giving it to him, to make sure the taste is OK.

Love is when you kiss all the time. Then when you get tired of kissing, you still want to be together and you talk more. My mommy and daddy are like that. They look gross when they kiss but they look happy and sometimes they dance in the kitchen while kissing.

If you want to learn to love better, you should start with a friend who hates you.

Love is hugging. Love is kissing. Love is saying no.

When you tell someone something bad about yourself and you're scared she won't love you anymore. But then you get surprised because not only does she still love you, she loves you even more.

Love is when you tell a guy you like his shirt, then he wears it everyday.

Love is like a little old woman and a little old man who are still friends even after they've know each other so well.

Love comes from people's hearts, but God made hearts.

During my piano recital, I was on a stage and scared. I looked at all the people watching me and saw my daddy waving and smiling. He was the only one doing that. I wasn't scared anymore.

My mommy loves me more than anybody. You don't see anyone else kissing me to sleep at night.

Love is when mommy gives daddy the best piece of chicken.

Love is when mommy sees daddy smelly and sweaty and still says he is handsomer than Robert Redford.

When you're born and see your mommy for the first time. That's love.

You really shouldn't say 'I love you' unless you mean it. But if you mean it, you should say it a lot. People forget.

I let my big sister pick on me because my mom says she only picks on me because she loves me. So I pick on my baby sister because I love her.

Love cards like Valentine's cards say stuff on them that we'd like to say ourselves, but we wouldn't be caught dead saying.

When you love somebody, your eyelashes go up and down and little stars come out of you.

Love makes you sweat a lot.

You never have to be lonely. There's always somebody to love, even if it's just a squirrel or a kitten.

You can break love, but it won't die.

"How do I love thee? Let me count the ways. / I love thee to the depth and breadth and height / My soul can reach." Elizabeth Barrett Browning

Sunday, August 17, 2003



Throughout the ages, people have searched for the meaning of love. But even the great philosophers, with their profound definitions, could not fully touch its true essence. In a survey, 4 to 8 year-old kids shared their views on love. But what do little kids know about love? Read on and be surprised that despite their young and innocent minds, kids already have a simple but deep grasp of that four-letter word:

Love is that first feeling you feel before all the bad stuff gets in the way.

When my grandmother got arthritis, she couldn't bend over to paint her toenails anymore. So my grandfather does it for her all the time, even when his hands got arthritis, too. That's love.

When someone loves you, the way she says your name is different. You know that your name is safe in her mouth.

If life is 'A,' love is the whole alphabet.

Love is when you go out to eat and give somebody most of your french fries without making them give you any of theirs.

Love is when someone hurts you. And you get so mad but you don't yell at him because you know it would hurt his feelings.

Love is what makes you smile when you're tired.

Love is when my mommy makes coffee for my daddy then she takes a sip before giving it to him, to make sure the taste is OK.

Love is when you kiss all the time. Then when you get tired of kissing, you still want to be together and you talk more. My mommy and daddy are like that. They look gross when they kiss but they look happy and sometimes they dance in the kitchen while kissing.

If you want to learn to love better, you should start with a friend who hates you.

Love is hugging. Love is kissing. Love is saying no.

When you tell someone something bad about yourself and you're scared she won't love you anymore. But then you get surprised because not only does she still love you, she loves you even more.

Love is when you tell a guy you like his shirt, then he wears it everyday.

Love is like a little old woman and a little old man who are still friends even after they've know each other so well.

Love comes from people's hearts, but God made hearts.

During my piano recital, I was on a stage and scared. I looked at all the people watching me and saw my daddy waving and smiling. He was the only one doing that. I wasn't scared anymore.

My mommy loves me more than anybody. You don't see anyone else kissing me to sleep at night.

Love is when mommy gives daddy the best piece of chicken.

Love is when mommy sees daddy smelly and sweaty and still says he is handsomer than Robert Redford.

When you're born and see your mommy for the first time. That's love.

You really shouldn't say 'I love you' unless you mean it. But if you mean it, you should say it a lot. People forget.

I let my big sister pick on me because my mom says she only picks on me because she loves me. So I pick on my baby sister because I love her.

Love cards like Valentine's cards say stuff on them that we'd like to say ourselves, but we wouldn't be caught dead saying.

When you love somebody, your eyelashes go up and down and little stars come out of you.

Love makes you sweat a lot.

You never have to be lonely. There's always somebody to love, even if it's just a squirrel or a kitten.

You can break love, but it won't die.

"How do I love thee? Let me count the ways. / I love thee to the depth and breadth and height / My soul can reach." Elizabeth Barrett Browning

Saturday, August 16, 2003


Airlines have been making the news a lot lately—mostly bad news, so keeping a sense of humor might be helpful.

From a Southwest Airlines employee: "Welcome aboard Southwest Flight XXX to YYY. To operate your seatbelt, insert the metal tab into the buckle, and pull tight. It works just like every other seatbelt, and if you don't know how to operate one, you probably shouldn't be out in public unsupervised. In the event of a sudden loss of cabin pressure, margarine cups will descend from the ceiling. Stop screaming, grab the mask and pull it over your face. If you have a small child traveling with you, secure your mask before assisting with his. If you are traveling with more than one small child...pick your favorite. Weather at our destination is 50 degrees with some broken clouds, but we'll try to have them fixed before we arrive. Thank you, and remember, nobody loves you, or your money, more than Southwest Airlines."

"Your seat cushions can be used for flotation, and in the event of an emergency water landing, please paddle to shore and take them with our compliments."

A pilot on a Southwest flight: "We've reached our cruising altitude now, and I'm turning off the seat belt sign. I'm switching to autopilot, too, so I can come back there and visit with all of you for the rest of the flight."

"Should the cabin lose pressure, oxygen masks will drop from the overhead area. Please place the bag over your own mouth and nose before assisting children or other adults acting like children."

"As you exit the plane, make sure to gather all of your belongings. Anything left behind will be distributed evenly among the flight attendants. Please do not leave children or spouses."

"Last one off the plane must clean it. From a pilot during his welcome message: "We are pleased to have some of the best flight attendants in the industry...unfortunately, none of them are on this flight!"

Heard over the intercom from a flight attendant on Southwest Airlines just after a very hard landing in Salt Lake City: "That was quite a bump and I know what y'all are thinking. I'm here to tell you it wasn't the airline's fault, it wasn't the pilot's fault, it wasn't the flight attendants' was the asphalt!"

During the final approach on an American Airlines flight into Amarillo, Texas, on a particularly windy and bumpy day, the captain was really having to fight it. After an extremely hard landing, the flight attendant came on the PA and announced, "Ladies and Gentlemen, welcome to Amarillo. Please remain in your seats with your seatbelts fastened while the Captain taxis what's left of our airplane to the gate!"

Another flight attendant's comment on a less than perfect landing: "We ask you to please remain seated as Captain Kangaroo bounces us to the terminal."

An airline pilot wrote that on a particular flight he had hammered his ship into the runway really hard. The airline had a policy, which required the first officer to stand at the door while the passengers exited, smile, and give them a "Thanks for flying XYZ airline." He said that in light of his bad landing, he had a hard time looking the passengers in the eye, thinking that someone would have a smart comment. Finally everyone had gotten off except for a little old lady walking with a cane. She said, "Sonny, mind if I ask you a question?" "Why no, Ma'am," said the pilot, "what is it?" The little old lady asked, "Did we land or were we shot down?"

After a real crusher of a landing in Phoenix, the flight attendant announced, "Ladies and Gentlemen, please remain in your seats until Capt. Crash and the Crew have brought the aircraft to a screeching halt against the gate. And, once the tire smoke has cleared and the warning bells are silenced, we'll open the door and you can pick your way through the wreckage to the terminal."

Part of a flight attendant's arrival announcement: "We'd like to thank you folks for flying with us today. And, the next time you get the insane urge to go blasting through the skies in a pressurized metal tube, we hope you'll think of us here at US Airways."

"A trip is what you take when you can't take anymore of what you've been taking." Adeline Ainsworth

Friday, August 15, 2003

If she were alive today, Mae West would be celebrating her 111th birthday on Sunday. Well, she probably wouldn't be thrilled with a number like that and, in truth, no one was ever certain exactly what year produced the woman whose name became synonymous with inflatable life preservers—and a whole lot of other interesting things! She may have always been vague about her date of birth, but she more than made up for that reticence by speaking out on every other topic in some of the most memorable one liners of the 20th century. Long before "spin" was "in" Mae West had mastered the art.

Although, she passed away at age 88 (or so) in 1980, the legend lives on! Mae West introduced attitude to American culture with a capital A. With this lady (an expression she strenuously objected to) the double entendre became a contact sport! Born in Brooklyn, New York, Mae West took the silver screen by storm in the 1930's and when verbal gymnastics became her "coin of the realm," she took no prisoners.

After being convicted in 1926 in New York on an obscenity charge, she did what any smart woman would, under those circumstances—she took her act "on the road." But, not before serving up a smashing performance on Broadway in Diamond Lil. When she relocated to Hollywood in 1932 she wrote her own screen plays and also starred in the lead roles of such notables as, "I'm No Angel," "She Done Him Wrong," "I'm No Angel," and of course, her gift to W.C. Fields, "My Little Chickadee." In explaining the plot of one of these films she said, "I wrote the story myself. It's all about a girl who lost her reputation but never missed it." She was to the 30's, what Madonna was to the 80's. Of course, compared to Madonna's various past personas, Mae West looks and sounds like someone you might sit down next to in church! Ah, how some things have changed.

We would offer some of our favorites:

"It is better to be looked over than to be overlooked."
"Men would wither and custom stale them, but diamonds! Ah, they were crystallized immortality."
On her show, "Catherine Was Great:" "I'm glad you like my Catherine. I like her too. She ruled thirty million people and had three thousand lovers. I do the best I can in two hours."
"Between two evils, I always pick the one I never tried before."
"When I am good, I'm very good, but when I'm bad I'm better."
"Hollywood was like a mouse being followed by a cat called television."
"His mother should have thrown him away and kept the stork."
"Personally, I like two types of men—domestic and foreign."
"A man in the house is worth two in the street."
"It's not the men in my life that counts, it's the life in my men."
"Give a man a free hand and he'll try to put it all over you."
"I generally avoid temptation unless I can't resist it."

Few people would view Mae West as a role model for anything positive but early in the last century she was an out front, in your face, gutsy broad! And, as W.C. Fields would say—"That ain't all bad!!"


"There are no original ideas. There are only original people." Barbara Grizzuti Harrison

Thursday, August 14, 2003

"Most people are about as happy as they make up their minds to be". Abraham Lincoln

A Place to Stand

If you have ever gone through a tollbooth, you know that your relationship to the person in the booth is not the most intimate you'll ever have. It is one of life's frequent non-encounters: You hand over some money; you might get change; you drive off. I have been through every one of the 17 tollbooths on the Oakland-San Francisco Bay Bridge on thousands of occasions, and never had an exchange worth remembering with anybody.

Late one morning in 1984, headed for lunch in San Francisco, I drove toward one of the booths. I heard loud music. It sounded like a party, or a Michael Jackson concert. I looked around. No other cars with their windows open. No sound trucks. I looked at the tollbooth. Inside it, the man was dancing.

"What are you doing?" I asked.
"I'm having a party," he said.
"What about the rest of these people?" I looked over at other booths; nothing moving there.
"They're not invited."

I had a dozen other questions for him, but somebody in a big hurry to get somewhere started punching his horn behind me and I drove off. But I made a note to myself: Find this guy again. There's something in his eye that says there's magic in his tollbooth.

Months later I did find him again, still with the loud music, still having a party.

Again I asked, "What are you doing?"
He said, "I remember you from the last time. I'm still dancing. I'm having the same party."
I said, "Look. What about the rest of the people"
He said. "Stop. What do those look like to you?" He pointed down the row of tollbooths.
"They look like tool booths."
"Nooooo imagination!'
I said, "Okay, I give up. What do they look like to you?"
He said, "Vertical coffins."
"What are you talking about?"
"I can prove it. At 8:30 every morning, live people get in. Then they die for eight hours. At 4:30, like Lazarus from the dead, they reemerge and go home. For eight hours, brain is on hold, dead on the job. Going through the motions."

I was amazed. This guy had developed a philosophy, a mythology about his job. I could not help asking the next question: "Why is it different for you? You're having a good time."

He looked at me. "I knew you were going to ask that, " he said. "I'm going to be a dancer someday." He pointed to the administration building. "My bosses are in there, and they're paying for my training."

Sixteen people dead on the job, and the seventeenth, in precisely the same situation, figures out a way to live. That man was having a party where you and I would probably not last three days. The boredom! He and I did have lunch later, and he said, "I don't understand why anybody would think my job is boring. I have a corner office, glass on all sides. I can see the Golden Gate, San Francisco, the Berkeley hills; half the Western world vacations here and I just stroll in every day and practice dancing.

Source: Chicken Soup For The Soul, copyright 1996 by Jack Canfield and Mark Victor Hansen Author: Dr. Charles Garfield

The Power of a Smile

She smiled at the sorrowful stranger.
The smiling seemed to make him feel better.

He remembered past kindnesses of a friend
And wrote him a thank you letter.

The friend was so pleased with the thank you
That he left a large tip after lunch.

The waitress, surprised by the size of the tip,
Bet the whole thing on a hunch.

The next day she picked up her winnings,
And gave part to a man on the street.

The man on the street was grateful;
For two days he'd had nothing to eat.

After he finished his dinner,
He left for his small dingy room.

He didn't know at that moment
That he might be facing his doom.

On the way he picked up a shivering puppy
And took him home to get warm.

The puppy was very grateful
To be in out of the storm.

That night the house caught on fire.
The puppy barked the alarm.

He barked till he woke the whole household
And saved everybody from harm.

One of the boys that he rescued
Grew up to be President.

All this because of a simple smile
That hadn't cost a cent.

"If a man insisted always on being serious, and never allowed himself a bit of fun and relaxation, he would go mad or become unstable without knowing it." Heroditus (5th century BC)

"In my day, we didn't have self-esteem, we had self-respect, and no more of it than we had earned." Jane Haddam

"Total self-esteem requires total and unconditional acceptance of yourself. You are a unique and worthy individual, regardless of your mistakes, defeats and failures, despite what others may think, say or feel about you or your behavior. If you truly accept and love yourself, you won't have a driving need for attention and approval. Self-esteem is a genuine love of self. Stop all adverse value judging of yourself. Stop accepting the adverse value judgments of others. Purge yourself of all condemnation, shame, blame, guilt & remorse."

Unknown (Author / Orator unknown or unconfirmed)


From: -- 302 stories, poems, metaphors, lists, parables, writings


Wednesday, August 13, 2003

Get Out And Do It

Get out there and give real help!
Get out there and love!
Get out there and testify!
Get out there and create whatever you can to inspire people to claim their divine being and origin.
This is what has to be done now.
There is no time, there has never been any time for dallying and being depressed.
Mother Teresa

~*^*~ ~*^*~ ~*^*~ ~*^~ ~*^*~ ~*^*~ ~*^*~ ~*^*~ ~*^*~ ~*^*~ ~*^*~ ~*^*~ ~*^*~ ~*^*~ ~*^*~ ~*^*~

Charles Plumb, a U.S. Naval Academy graduate, was a jet pilot in Vietnam.

After 75 combat missions, his plane was destroyed by a surface-to-air missile. Plumb ejected and parachuted into enemy hands. He was captured and spent 6 years in a communist Vietnamese prison. He survived the ordeal and now lectures on lessons learned from that experience.

One day, when Plumb and his wife were sitting in a restaurant, a man at another table came up and said, "You're Plumb! You flew jet fighters in Vietnam from the aircraft carrier Kitty Hawk. You were shot down!"

"How in the world did you know that?" asked Plumb.

"I packed your parachute," the man replied. Plumb gasped in surprise and gratitude. The man pumped his hand and said, "I guess it worked!" Plumb assured him, "It sure did. If your chute hadn't worked, I wouldn't be here today."

Plumb couldn't sleep that night, thinking about that man. Plumb says, "I kept wondering what he might have looked like in a Navy uniform: a white hat and bell-bottom trousers. I wondered how many times I might have seen him and not even said "Good morning, How are you?" or anything because, you see, I was a fighter pilot and he was "just a sailor".

Plumb thought of the many hours the sailor had spent on a long wooden table in the bowels of the ship, carefully weaving the shroud lines and folding the silks of each chute, holding in his hands each time the fate of someone he didn't know.

Now, Plumb asks his audience, "Who's packing your parachute?" Everyone has someone who provides what they need to make it through the day. Plumb also points out that he needed many kinds of parachutes when his plane was shot down over enemy territory --- he needed his physical parachute, his mental parachute, his emotional parachute, and his spiritual parachute. He called on all these supports before reaching safety.

Sometimes in the daily challenges that life gives us, we miss what is really important. We may fail to say hello, please or thank you, congratulate someone on something wonderful that has happened to them, give a compliment, or just do something nice for no reason.

As you go through this week, this month, this year, recognize the people who pack your parachute.


"Gratitude weighs heavily on us only when we no longer feel it." Comtesse Diane

Tuesday, August 12, 2003

We took a look back at the "Fabulous Fifties" yesterday. It was a time when life seemed less complicated and the world a little friendlier. Certainly, it was beyond the wildest dreams of anyone "coming of age" at that time to anticipate a future, which would require this type of reminder!


1. You wake up at 4 am to go to the bathroom and stop to check your e-mail on the way back to bed.

2. You turn off your computer and get this awful empty feeling, as if you just pulled the plug on a loved one.

3. You laugh at people with 14.4-baud modems.

4. You start using smileys :-) in your snail mail.

5. You find yourself typing "com" after every period when using a word

6. You can't correspond with your mother...she doesn't have a modem.

7. When your e-mail box shows, "no new messages," and you feel really depressed.

8. You don't know the gender of your three closest friends because they have neutral screen names and you never bothered to ask.

9. You move into a new house and decide to Netscape before you Landscape.

10. You start tilting your head sideways to smile.

11. After reading this message, you immediately e-mail it to a friend!!!

What's the difference between a boyfriend and a husband? About 30 pounds. - Cindy Garner

I bought my wife a new car. She called and said, "There was water in the carburetor." I said, "Where's the car?" She said, "In the lake." - Henny Youngman

Never go to bed mad. Stay up and fight. - Phyllis Diller

My mother buried three husbands, and two of them were just napping. - Rita Rudner

The secret of a happy marriage remains a secret. - Henny Youngman

People are always asking couples whose marriages have endured at least a quarter of a century for their secret for success. Actually, it is no secret at all. I am a forgiving woman. Long ago, I forgave my husband for not being Paul Newman. - Erma Bombeck

The statements below are said to have been written by actual students and genuine, authentic and not retouched or corrected:

In the first book of the Bible, Guinessis, God got tired of creating the world, so he took the Sabbath off.

Adam and Eve were created from an apple tree.

Noah's wife was called Joan of Ark. Noah built an ark, which the animals come on to in pears.

Samson slayed the Philistines with the axe of the Apostles.

Moses led the Hebrews to the Red Sea, where they made unleavened bread, which is bread without any ingredients.

The Egyptians were all drowned in the dessert. Afterward, Moses went up on Mount Cyanide to get the ten amendments.

The fifth commandment is to humor they father and mother.

Moses died before he ever reaches Canada.

Then Joshua led the Hebrews in the battle of Geritol.

Solomon, one of David's sons, had 300 wives and 700 porcupines.

When the three wise guys from the east side arrived, they found Jesus in the manager.

The people who followed the Lord were called the 12 decibels.

The epistles were the wives of the apostles.

One of the opossums was St. Matthew who was also a taximan.

St. Paul cavorted to Christianity. He preached holy acrimony, which is another name for marriage.

A Christian should have only one spouse. This is called monotony.

Subject: Rocket Scientists

Sometimes it DOES take a Rocket Scientist. Scientists at NASA have developed a gun built specifically to launch dead chickens at the windshield of airliners, military jets and the space shuttle, all travelling at maximum velocity.

The idea is to simulate the frequent incidents of collisions with airborne fowl to test the strength of windshields. British engineers heard about the gun and were eager to test it on the windshields of their new high-speed trains.

Arrangements were made. But when the gun was fired, the engineers stood shocked as the chicken hurtled out of the barrel, crashed into the shatterproof shield, smashed it to smithereens, crashed through the control console, snapped the engineer's backrest in two and embedded itself In the back wall of the cabin.

The horrified Britons sent NASA the disastrous results of the experiment, along with the designs of the windshield, and begged the U.S. scientists for suggestions.

NASA's response was just one sentence: "Thaw the chicken!"

"After you've heard the truth, everything else is just cheap whiskey."


Another take on the 50's can be found in this article from the CARYL archives—one of the most popular: It's Not Chests!

Monday, August 11, 2003

A stroll down memory lane to start off the week…….1950 seems like a good place to start. From Kingwood College Library we bring you a history lesson that may also offer a few good memories…and some that seemed like "a good idea at the time," which we may find ourselves wondering now, "What in the world were we thinking???" If you are willing to "tough it out" through all the facts and figures, we promise that we've saved the best for last!

FACTS about this decade:
(these statistics pertain to the U.S. and we hope our friends from other countries will forgive us a bit of self-indulgence….Americans are noted for that)

Population: 149,1888,000
Unemployed: 3,288,000
Life expectancy: women 71.1, men 65.6
Car Sales: 6,665,800 0
Average salary: $2,992
Labor force male/female: 5/2
Cost of a loaf of bread: $0.14
Bomb shelter plans, like the government pamphlet "You Can Survive", become widely available

1950-1959 The end of World War II brought thousands of young servicemen back to America to pick up their lives and start new families in new homes with new jobs. With energy never before experienced, American industry expanded to meet peacetime needs. Americans began buying goods not available during the war, which created corporate expansion and jobs. Growth everywhere. The baby boom was underway...


1950 - President Harry Truman ('til 1952) approves production of the hydrogen bomb and sends air force and navy to Korea in June.
1951 - Transcontinental television begins with a speech by Pres. Truman. Dwight D. Eisenhower is president from 1953 until 1961
1952 - The Immigration and Naturalization Act of 1952 is signed, removing racial and ethnic barriers to becoming a U.S. citizen.
1953 - Fighting ends in Korea.
1954 - U. S. Senator Joseph McCarthy begins televised hearings into alleged Communists in the army.
1954 - Racial segregation is ruled unconstitutional in public schools by the U.S. Supreme Court.
1955 - Rosa Parks refuses to give up her seat on a public bus in Montgomery, Alabama.
1955 - The American Federation of Labor and the Congress of Industrial Organizations merge making the new AFL-CIO an organization with 15 million members.
1956 - Dr. Jonas Salk developed a vaccine for polio
1958 - Explorer I, the first U.S. satellite, successfully orbits the earth.
December 10, 1958 - The first domestic jet-airline passenger service is begun by National Airlines between New York City and Miami.
1959 - Alaska and Hawaii become the forty-ninth and fiftieth states.

"Painting is a state...self-discovery. Every good artist paints what he is." Jackson Pollock; there was a fresh artistic outlook after World War II ended and the artistic world reflected this outlook. Part of the 1950's boom in consumerism included housing. People could afford single family dwellings and suburbia was born. A small suburban community called Levittown was built by William Levitt for returning servicemen and their families. An influence of Frank Lloyd Wright is seen in the popular Ranch style house.

America had just begun her recovery from World War II, when suddenly the Korean Conflict developed. The USSR became a major enemy in the Cold War. Americans were feeling a sense of national anxiety. Was America the greatest country in the world? Was life in America the best it had ever been? As the decade passed, literature reflected the conflict of self-satisfaction with 50's Happy Days and cultural self-doubt about conformity and the true worth of American values. Science Fiction became more popular with the actual possibility of space travel.

Drive-in movies became popular for families and teens. Cars were seen as an indicator of prosperity and cool-ness. Fashion successes were Bill Blass and his blue jeans, poodle skirts made of felt and decorated with sequins and poodle appliques, pony tails for girls, and flat tops and crew cuts for guys. Teenagers were defined as a separate generation and were represented by James Dean who wore blue jeans in "Rebel Without a Cause" and created a fashion and attitude sensation. Activities we liked were flying saucer watching, and watching and dancing to Dick Clark's American Bandstand. Fad hits were toys like hula-hoops and Hopalong Cassidy guns and western gear, Davy Crockett coon skin hats and silly putty.

Perhaps the most far-reaching change in communications worldwide was the advancement in the area of television broadcasting. During the 1950's, television became the dominant mass media as people brought television into their homes in greater numbers of hours per week than ever before. In the early fifties, young people watched TV more hours than they went to school, a trend, which has not changed greatly since that time. What was portrayed on television became accepted as fact. The ideal family, the ideal schools and neighborhoods, the world, were all seen in a way, which had only partial basis in reality. And then, in 1954, black and white broadcasts became color broadcasts. Shows called " sitcoms " like "The Honeymooners", "Lassie", "Father Knows Best", "The Adventures of Ozzie and Harriet, and "I Love Lucy" featured popular characters whose lives thousands of viewers watched and copied.

We promised that we saved the best for last—and here it is:
This site, created and owned by Candace Rich, is the best we found—and there are a few. Candace Rich has, however, captured the look, color, and feel of a generation many of us remember fondly. She was born in 1950 and has preserved a period in time, which brought about so many radical, cultural changes, that many are still influencing life today. A big Neat Women Inc thank you to Ms. Rich. Drop by her place at and say hello.

"Memory, that library of the soul from which I will draw knowledge and experience for the rest of my life." Tove Ditlevsen


The 50's ended with a bang and the fall-out as the 60's were ushered in might be best reflected in an article from the CARYL archives, titled, It's Not Confusion. Check it out!

Sunday, August 10, 2003



A story tells that two friends were walking through the desert. During some point of the journey they had an argument, and one friend slapped the other one in the face. The one who got slapped was hurt, but without saying anything, wrote in the sand: "TODAY MY BEST FRIEND SLAPPED ME IN THE FACE."

They kept on walking until they found an oasis, where they decided to take a bath. The one who had been slapped got stuck in the mire and started drowning, but the friend saved him. After she recovered from the near drowning, she wrote on a stone: "TODAY MY BEST FRIEND SAVED MY LIFE."

The friend who had slapped and saved her best friend asked her, "After I hurt you, you wrote in the sand and now you write on a stone. Why?" The other friend replied:

"When someone hurts us we should write it down in sand where winds of forgiveness can erase it away. But, when someone does something good for us, we must engrave it in stone where no wind can ever erase it."


They say it takes a minute to find a special person, an hour to appreciate them, a day to love them, but then an entire life to forget them. Take the time to live!!!

"Forgiveness is the economy of the heart…..Forgiveness saves expense of anger, the cost of hatred, the waste of spirits." Hannah Moore


Saturday, August 9, 2003


Smart Math? And, Other Possible Words of Wisdom


Smart man + smart woman = romance

Smart man + dumb woman = affair

Dumb man + smart woman = marriage

Dumb man + dumb woman = pregnancy


Smart boss + smart employee = profit

Smart boss + dumb employee = production

Dumb boss + smart employee = promotion

Dumb boss + dumb employee = overtime


A man will pay $2 for a $1 item he needs.

A woman will pay $1 for a $2 item that she doesn't need.


A woman worries about the future until she gets a husband.

A man never worries about the future until he gets a wife.

A successful man is one who makes more money than his wife can spend.

A successful woman is one who can find such a man.


To be happy with a man, you must understand him a lot and love him a little.

To be happy with a woman, you must love her a lot and not try to understand her at all.


Married men live longer than single men do, but married men are a lot more willing to die.


A woman marries a man expecting he will change, but he doesn't.

A man marries a woman expecting that she won't change, and she does.


A woman has the last word in any argument.

Anything a man says after that is the beginning of a new argument.


Old aunts used to come up to me at weddings, poking me in the ribs and cackling, telling me, "You're next." They stopped after I started doing the same thing to them at funerals.

I Love You Catherine, Mommy~~Happy Birthday Baby Girl!!

Friday, August 8, 2003

My Mother taught me, yes she did!

My mother taught me IRONY:
"Keep laughing and I'll give you something to cry about."

My mother taught me to APPRECIATE WHAT I HAVE:
"It's better than a poke in the eye with a sharp stick."

My mother taught me to APPRECIATE A JOB WELL DONE:
"If you're going to kill each other off, do it outside - I just finished cleaning!"

My mother taught me RELIGION:
"You'd better pray that will come out of the carpet."

My mother taught me about TIME TRAVEL:
"If you don't straighten up, I'm going to knock you clear into the middle of next week!"

My mother taught me LOGIC:
"Because I said so, that's why!"

My mother taught me FORESIGHT:
"Make sure you wear clean underwear, in case you're in an accident."

My mother taught me OSMOSIS:
"Shut your mouth and eat your supper!"

My mother taught me LOVE:
"You know that whatever happens, I'll always stand behind you."

My mother taught me about the FOOD GROUPS:
"If you set one foot outside that door, you're not getting any homemade bread."

My mother taught me CONTORTIONS:
"Have you seen the dirt on the back of your neck!"

My mother taught me to STAND FIRM:
"You'll sit there until all that spinach is finished."

My mother taught me about WEATHER:
"It looks like a tornado went through your room."

My mother taught me about HYPOCRISY:
"If I've told you once I've told you a million times, 'Don't exaggerate!!!' "

My mother taught me THE CIRCLE OF LIFE:
"I brought you into this world, and I can take you out."

The following story shows us the side of diversity that we are all working for. It is a pleasant twist to see that there are companies and individuals who face discrimination head on, if only one small step at a time. Enjoy reading the positive side of diversity...and applaud British Airways for their action in this situation.

On a British Airways flight from Johannesburg, a middle-aged, well-off white South African Lady had found herself sitting next to a black man. She called the cabin crew attendant over to complain about her seating…."What seems to be the problem Madam?" asked the attendant. "Can't you see?" she said " You've sat me next to a kaffir. I can't possibly sit next to this disgusting human. Find me another seat!" "Please calm down Madam." the flight attendant replied. "The flight is very full today, but I'll tell you what I'll do-I'll go and check to see if we have any seats available in club or first class." The woman cocks a snooty look at the outraged black man beside her (not to mention many of the surrounding passengers).

A few minutes later the flight attendant returns with the good news, which she delivers to the lady, who cannot help but look at the people around her with a smug and self satisfied grin: "Madam, unfortunately, as I suspected, economy is full. I've spoken to the cabin services director, and club is also full. However, we do have one seat in first class."

Before the lady has a chance to answer, the flight attendant continues..."It is most extraordinary to make this kind of upgrade, however, and I have had to get special permission from the Captain. But, given the circumstances, the captain felt that it was outrageous that someone be forced to sit next to such an obnoxious person." With that, she turned to the black man sitting next to her, and said: "So if you'd like to get your things, sir, I have your seat ready for you..."

At which point, apparently the surrounding passengers stood and gave a standing ovation while the black man walked up to the front of the plane...people will forget what you said ...people will forget what you did ...but people will never forget how you made them feel ..

"No emergency excuses you from exercising tolerance." Phyllis Bottome

Thursday, August 7, 2003

Beauty Tips by Audrey Hepburn

For attractive lips,
Speak words of kindness.

For lovely eyes,
Seek out the good in people.

For a slim figure,
Share your food with the hungry.

For beautiful hair,
Let a child run his fingers through it once a day.

For poise,
Walk with the knowledge you'll never walk alone.

People, even more than things, have to be restored, renewed, revived, reclaimed and redeemed. Never throw out anybody. Remember: if you ever need a helping hand, you'll find One at the end of your arm. As you grow older you will discover that you have two hands. One for helping yourself,

the other for helping others.


You And Yourself

It is rewarding to find someone whom you like, but it is essential to like yourself.

It is quickening to recognize someone as a good and decent human being, but it is indispensable to view yourself as acceptable.

It is a delight to discover people who are worthy of respect, admiration, and love, but it is vital to believe yourself deserving of these things.

For you cannot live in someone else. You cannot find yourself in someone else. You cannot be given a life by someone else. Of all the people you will know in a lifetime, you are the only one you will never leave nor lose.

To the question of your life, you are the only answer. To the problems of your life, you are the only solution.

I Love Myself The Way I Am

I love myself the way I am there's nothing I need to change.
I'll always be the perfect me, there's nothing to rearrange.
I'm beautiful and capable, of being the best me I can.
And I love myself, just the way I am.

I love you the way you are there's nothing you need to do.
When I feel the love inside, it's easy to love you.
Behind your fears, your rage and tears, I see your shining star.
And I love you, just the way your are.

I love the world the way it is, cause I can clearly see.
That all the things I judge are done, by people just like me.
So 'til the birth of peace on earth, that only love can bring.
I'll help it grow, by loving everything.

I love myself the way I am, and I still want to grow.
But change outside can only come, when deep inside I know.
I'm beautiful and capable, of being the best me I can.
And I love myself, just the way I am.

Source: A Unity Song


Please visit our new sister site—Fifty Is Nifty

Wednesday, August 6, 2003

One of EVE's careers was spent in the Public Affairs Department of a large corporation. On several occasions, an intern, (from the University in the city where she was living) was assigned to spend a semester working with EVE as part of a student course requirement in communications. One young woman, at the conclusion of the school year asked if EVE would give a talk to her sorority sisters at the Kappa Kappa Gamma house. The students were Juniors and Seniors and were interested in learning about "how to succeed in business." As we ponder the future as "women of a certain age" and anticipate "overcoming middle-age" it is not unlike the prospects for moving toward new horizons such as the girls who were present on that occasion anticipated. If we all agree time is relative, and we can embrace the idea of "life long learning," then there may be some useful insights in this excerpt from that speech:

I accepted this invitation today because Heather is my friend and because I feel a tremendous sense of responsibility to share my experiences with you. I have been extremely fortunate in life—I have also worked quite hard at making my own luck. But, I firmly believe a great deal of what we do in life comes back to us—the good things return in a fashion that enriches us and the bad things we do somehow can come back to haunt us as our scariest nightmares realized.

Had I combined all my past talks into one heading, it might have sounded something like: Pursuing excellence for empowered, voting women whether they be in government, corporate socially responsible positions, under the microscope or their own worst enemies. I might add that Rhett Butler would probably observe, 'Frankly my dear, I don't give a damn.' (Here's a totally useless piece of trivia—in Margaret Mitchell's book, Rhett Butler did not use the word 'frankly'—either that was written into the screenplay or Clark Gable simply added it for dramatic effect).

I decided to select a different title and integrate a lot of the ideas and opinions from past speeches and came up with, 'Is it the Glass Ceiling or the Looking Glass?" At this stage of your lives you are most interested in and consumed by thoughts of the future. Where are you going and how are you going to get there? You may be headed in the direction of a Glass Ceiling or a Looking Glass or you may choose some altogether different route. 'Do not go where the path may lead. Go, instead, where there is no path….and leave a trail.'

May I suggest some tools for your knapsack (for neat women that would be one of the huge carry all purses so many of us lug around): in addition to your education (for neat women that is the school of life and hard knocks) you would be well served by having many of the following (while some of these may sound like a blinding flash of the obvious, I urge you to consider them, as if for the first time):

  • Confidence—'If you think you can, you can. And if you think you can't, you're right.' Mary Kay Ash
  • Preparation—"I always knew I would turn a corner and run into this day, but I ain't prepared for it nohow.' Louise Meriwether
  • Hard work—'If you rest, you rust.' Helen Hayes
  • Knowledge—read, pay attention, and take initiative with opportunities to learn—"It is important to use all knowledge ethically, humanely, and lovingly." Carol Pearson
  • Relationships—what kind of a ship, is a relationship? 'Having someone wonder where you are when you don't come home at night is a very old human need.' Margaret Mead
  • Coping skills—faith, humor, and confidence

The most formidable barrier to success may lie in the Looking Glass—what we find inside ourselves are the qualities which can advance our goals and strengthen our personal satisfaction in living. What lies on the other side of the Glass Ceiling may not be as wonderful or as rewarding as we think. What lies through the Looking Glass can often be confusing and frightening.

Perhaps a good place to focus on before you proceed too much further in your journey is INWARD. If you like what you see, if you're comfortable with who you are, then your trip will be much smoother. I'm reminded of this page from a book:

'It was morning and the new sun sparkled across the ripples of a gentle sea…..

Way off alone, out by himself beyond boat and shore Jonathan Livingston Seagull was practicing. A hundred feet in the sky he lowered his webbed feet, lifted his beak and strained to hold a painful twisting curve through his wings. The curve meant that he would fly slowly, and now he slowed until the wind was a whisper in his face, until the ocean stood still beneath him. He narrowed his eyes in fierce concentration, held his breath, forced one-single-more-inch of curve. Then his feathers ruffled, he stalled and fell.

Seagulls, as you know, never falter, never stall. To stall in the air is for them disgrace and it is dishonor.

But Jonathan Livingston Seagull—unashamed, stretching his wings again in that trembling curve—slowly, slowly, and TRYING ONCE MORE—was no ordinary bird.'"

Whether we're 20, 30, 40, 50, 60 years old or more, there's something worthwhile in remembering that none of us is ordinary and all of us can greet each new day as the first day of the rest of our lives! And if we have an opportunity to turn around and reach out with a helping hand to a younger woman—let's do it.

"To tend, unfailingly, unflinchingly, towards a goal, is the secret of success." Anna Pavlova


Do you shop online? Try NEAT WOMEN INC'S new sister site, Fifty Is Nifty, where everything offered, hundreds and hundreds of products are UNDER $50.

Tuesday, August 5, 2003

The media today is so filled with bad news, and particularly the many stories about how brutal human beings can be to one another. We decided to begin this week with two stories about the good in you and those around you. The first tale is not true but could be and the second is an account of a real life event. We hope they both give you pause for thought and perhaps even a gentle push to reach out to someone else and extend the hand of kindness.

There once was a little boy who wanted to meet God. He knew it was a long trip to where God lived, so he packed his suitcase with Twinkies and a six-pack of root beer, and he started his journey.

When he had gone about three blocks, he met an old man. He was sitting in the park just staring at some pigeons. The boy sat down next to him and he opened his suitcase. He was about to take a drink from his root beer when he noticed that the old man looked hungry so he offered him a Twinkie. The old man gratefully accepted it and smiled at him.

His smile was so incredible that the boy wanted to see it again, so he offered him a root beer. Once again, he smiled at him. The boy was delighted! They sat there all afternoon eating and smiling, but they never said a word.

As it grew dark, the boy realized how tired he was and he got up to leave, but before he had gone more than a few steps, he turned around, ran back to the old man, and gave him a hug. The old man gave him his biggest smile ever.

When the boy opened the door to his own house a short time later his mother was surprised by the look of joy on his face. She asked him, "What did you do today that made you so happy?" He replied "I had lunch with God." But before his mother could respond, he added, "You know what? He's got the most beautiful smile I've ever seen!"

Meanwhile, the old man, also radiant with joy, returned to his home. His son was stunned by the look of peace on his face and he asked, "Father, what did you do today that made you so happy?" He replied, "I ate Twinkies in the park with God." But before his son responded, he added, "You know, he's much younger than I expected."

Too often we underestimate the power of a touch, a smile, a kind word, a listening ear, an honest compliment, or the smallest act of caring, all of which have the potential to turn a life around. People come into our lives for a reason, a season, or a lifetime!


A few years ago, at the Seattle Special Olympics, nine contestants, all physically or mentally disabled, assembled at the starting line for the 100-yard dash.

At the gun, they all started out, not exactly in a dash, but with a relish to run the race to the finish and win. All, that is, except one little boy who stumbled on the asphalt, tumbled over a couple of times, then began to cry.

The other eight heard the boy crying. They slowed and looked back. Then they all turned around and went back to him; every one of them. One girl with Downs Syndrome, bent down kissed him and said, "This will make it better." Then all nine linked arms and walked together to the finish line.

Everyone in the stadium stood, and the cheering went on for several minutes. People who were there are still telling the story. Why? Because deep down we know this one thing: What matters in this life is more than winning for ourselves. What matters in this life is helping others win, even if it means slowing down and changing our course.

"I believe that God is in me as the sun is in the color and fragrance of a flower—the Light in my darkness, the Voice in my silence." Helen Keller


Have you shopped at NEAT WOMEN INC yet? Give your emporium a look!

Monday, August 4, 2003

Sometimes, on Mondays, even after three cups of coffee, it's impossible to get ourselves together. What happens is Monday Mayhem…..translation: rambling rantings!

1. Getting married is very much like going to a restaurant with friends. You order what you want, then when you see what the other person has, you wish you had ordered that.

2. At the cocktail party, one woman said to another, "Aren't you wearing your wedding ring on the wrong finger?" The other replied, "Yes I am, I married the wrong man."

3. After a quarrel, a husband said to his wife, "You know, I was a fool when I married you. She replied, "Yes dear. But, I was in love and didn't notice."

4. A lady inserted an ad in the classifieds: "Husband wanted." Next day she received a hundred letters. They all said the same thing: "You can have mine."

5. A little boy asked his father, "Daddy, how much does it cost to get married?" And the father replied, "I don't know son, I'm still paying for it."

6. Marriage is the triumph of imagination over intelligence. Second, marriage is the triumph of hope over experience.

7. If you want your spouse to listen and pay strict attention to every word you say, talk in your sleep.

8. First guy (proudly): "My wife's an angel!" Second guy: "You're lucky, mine's still alive."

9. How do you scare a man? Sneak up behind him and start throwing rice.

10. What makes men chase women they have no intention of marrying? The same urge that makes dogs chase cars they have no intention of driving.


Some people never seem motivated to participate, but are content to watch others do. They are called "Speck Taters."

Some people never do anything to help, but are gifted at finding fault with the way others do things. They're called "Comment Taters."

Some are always looking to cause problems and really get under your skin. They are called "Aggie Taters."

There are those who are always saying they will, but somehow, they never get around to doing. We call them "Hezzie Taters."

Some people put on a front and act like someone else. They're called "Emma Taters."

Finally, there are those who walk what they talk. They're always prepared to stop what they're doing to lend a hand to others and bring real sunshine into the lives of others. You can call them "Sweet Taters."

The person, who sent us this, added a note (or an apology, depending on your perspective): These puns are so bad, I just had to send them along to you all. They truly made my day!

Two vultures board an airplane, each carrying two dead raccoons. The flight attendant looks at them and says, "I'm sorry, gentlemen, only one carrion allowed per passenger."

Did you hear that NASA recently put a bunch of Holsteins into low earth orbit? They called it "the herd shot round the world."

Two boll weevils grew up in South Carolina. One went to Hollywood and became a famous actor. The other stayed behind in the cotton fields and never amounted to much. The second one, naturally, became known as the lesser of two weevils.

Two Eskimos sitting in a kayak were chilly, but when they lit a fire in the craft, it sank -- proving once and for all that you can't have your kayak and heat it, too.

A three-legged dog walks into a saloon in the Old West. He slides up to the bar and announces: "I'm looking for the man who shot my paw."

Did you hear about the Buddhist who refused his dentist's Novocain during root canal work? He wanted to transcend dental medication.

A group of chess enthusiasts checked into a hotel and were standing in the lobby discussing their recent tournament victories. After about an hour the manager came out of the office and asked them to disperse. "But why?" they asked, as they moved off. "Because," he said, "I can't Stand chess nuts boasting in an open foyer."

There was a man who entered a local paper's pun contest. He sent in ten different puns, in the hope that at least one of the puns would win. Unfortunately, no pun in ten did.

Maybe that was painful enough to create a diversion, thereby helping you overlook that today is Monday….and as the Helen Hunt/Jack Nicholson movie on television last night pointed out: That's As Good As It Gets!! At least on Mondays sometimes.

(ILYCM) for those who are new to the NEAT WOMEN INC neighborhood, is an acronym for I Love You Catherine Mommy (or CILYM—Catherine I Love You Mommy). Catherine is the Eve's daughter and today the usual 1100 miles between them has been crossed and they are together! So, we'll simply say—have fun!

Sunday, August 3, 2003


Graduation Speech

They walked in tandem, each of the 93 students filing into the crowded auditorium. With rich maroon gowns flowing and the traditional caps, they looked almost as grown up as they felt. Dads swallowed hard behind broad smiles, and Moms freely brushed away tears.

The class would not pray during the commencement...not by choice, but because of a recent Court ruling prohibiting it. The principal and several students were careful to stay within the guidelines allowed by the ruling. They gave inspirational and challenging speeches, but no one mentioned divine guidance and no one asked for blessings on the graduates or their families.

The speeches were nice, but they were routine.

UNTIL the final speech received a standing ovation.

A solitary student walked proudly to the microphone. He stood still and silent for just a moment, and then he delivered his speech- - -a resounding sneeze. The rest of the students rose immediately to their feet and in unison they said, "God Bless You."

The audience exploded into applause. The graduating class had found a unique way to invoke God's blessing on their future---with or without the Court's approval.


The Power of the Tongue

A group of frogs were traveling through the woods, and two of them fell into a deep pit. All the other frogs gathered around the pit. When they saw how deep the pit was, they told the unfortunate frogs they would never get out.

The two frogs ignored the comments and tried to jump up out of the pit. The other frogs kept telling them to stop, that they were as good as dead. Finally, one of the frogs took heed to what the other frogs were saying and simply gave up. He fell down and died.

The other frog continued to jump as hard as he could. Once again, the crowd of frogs yelled at him to stop the pain and suffering and just die. He jumped even harder and finally made it out.

When he got out, the other frogs asked him, "Why did you continue jumping? Didn't you hear us?" The frog explained to them that he was deaf. He thought they were encouraging him the entire time.

This story teaches two lessons:

1. There is power of life and death in the tongue. An encouraging word to someone who is down can lift them up and help them make it through the day.

2. A destructive word to someone who is down can be what it takes to kill them. Be careful of what you say. Speak life to those who cross your path.

The power of words ... it is sometimes hard to understand that an encouraging word can go such a long way. Anyone can speak words that tend to rob another of the spirit to continue in difficult times.

"Those whom we support hold us up in life." Marie von Ebner-Eschenbach

Saturday, August 2, 2003


"A computer DOES save time at work. Now I can play solitaire without having to spend all that time shuffling real cards."      - Unknown


* Deer Kill 17,328

* New Vaccine may Contain Rabies

* Woman Improving After Fatal Crash

* Lawyer Says Client is Not That Guilty

* Couple Slain, Police Suspect Homicide

* Local High School Dropouts Cut in Half

* Juvenile Court to Try Shooting Defendant

* Legislator Wants Tougher Death Penalty

* Old School Pillars are Replaced by Alumni

* Include Your Children When Baking Cookies

* After Detour to California Shuttle Returns to Earth

* Something Went Wrong in Jet Crash, Experts Say

* Man Jumps Off Bridge. Neither Jumper nor Body Found

* Publicize Your Business Absolutely Free! Just send $6.00.

Some excerpts from a Washington Post Report, in which readers were asked to tell Gen-X'ers how much harder they had it in the old days:

Kids today think the world revolves around them. In my day, the sun revolved around the world, and the world was perched on the back of a giant tortoise. (Jonathan Paul)

In my day, we didn't have water. We had to smash together our own hydrogen and oxygen atoms. (Diana Hugue)

In my day, we didn't have hand-held calculators. We had to do addition on our fingers. To subtract, we had to have some fingers amputated. (Jon Patrick Smith)

In my day, we didn't have no rocks. We had to go down to the creek and wash our clothes by beating them with our heads. (Barry Blyveis)

In my day, we couldn't afford shoes, so we went barefoot. In the winter we had to wrap our feet with barbed wire for traction. (Bill Flavin)

In my day, we didn't have dogs or cats. All I had was Silver Beauty, my beloved paper clip. (Jennifer Hart)

In my day, we didn't have Strom Thurmond. Oh, wait. Yes we did. (Peg Sheeran)

*------------- Guaranteed to Roll Your Eyes ---------------*

A modern mother is explaining to her little girl about pictures in the family photo album. "This is the geneticist with your surrogate mother and here's your sperm donor and your father's clone. This is me holding you when you were just a frozen embryo.

The lady with the very troubled look on her face is your aunt, she's the family genealogist."

A large two-engine train was crossing the country. After they had gone some distance, one of the engines broke down.

"No problem," the engineer thought and carried on at half power. Farther on down the line, the other engine broke down and the train came to a standstill.

The engineer decided he should inform the passengers about why the train had stopped, and made the following announcement, "Ladies and gentlemen, I have some good news and some bad news. The bad news is that both engines have failed, and we will be stuck here for some time. The good news is that you're not in an airplane."

"Seize the moment. Remember all those women on the 'Titanic' who waved off the dessert cart."      - Erma Bombeck

Friday, August 1, 2003


Today I am mourning the passing of an old friend by the name of Common Sense. Common Sense, AKA C.S., lived a long life but died from heart failure at the brink of the millennium. No one really knows how old he was since his birth records were long ago lost in bureaucratic red tape. He selflessly devoted his life to service in schools, hospitals, homes, factories and offices, helping folks get jobs done without fanfare and foolishness. For decades, petty rules, silly laws and frivolous lawsuits held no power over C.S. He was credited with cultivating such valued lessons as to know when to come in out of the rain; the early bird gets the worm, and life isn't always fair. C.S. lived by simple, sound financial policies (don't spend more than you earn) and reliable parenting strategies (the adults are in charge, not the kids). A veteran of the Industrial Revolution, the Great depression, and the Technological revolution C.S. survived cultural and educational trends including feminism, body piercing, whole language and "new math". But his health declined when he became infected with the "Only-Helps-One-Person-It's-Worth-It" virus. In recent decades his waning strength proved no match for the ravages of overbearing federal regulation. He watched in pain as good people became ruled by self-seeking lawyers and enlightened auditors. His health rapidly deteriorated when schools endlessly implemented zero tolerance policies, reports of 6-year-old boys charged with sexual harassment for kissing classmate, a teen suspended for taking a swig of mouthwash after lunch, and a teacher fired for reprimanding an unruly student. Finally, C.S. lost his will to live as the Ten Commandments became contraband, churches became businesses, criminals received better treatment than victims, and federal judges stuck their noses in everything from Boy Scouts to professional sports. As the end neared, C.S. drifted in and out of logic but was kept informed of developments, regarding questionable regulations for asbestos, low flow toilets, "smart" guns, the nurturing of Prohibition Laws and mandatory air bags. Finally when told that the homeowners association restricted exterior furniture only to that which enhanced property values, he breathed his last. C.S. was preceded in death by his parents Truth and Trust; his wife, Discretion; his daughter, Responsibility; and his son Reason. He is survived by three stepbrothers, Rights, Tolerance, and Whiner. Not many attended his funeral because so few realized he was gone.

Author Unknown

To offset the grimness of that, we offer this:

A CREED TO LIVE BY (author unknown)

Don't undermine your worth by comparing yourself with others. It is because we are different that each of us is special.

Don't set goals by what other people deem important because only you know what is best for you.

Don't take for granted the things closest to your heart. Cling to them as you would your life, for without them life is meaningless.

Don't let your life slip through your fingers by living in the past or for the future.

By living your life one day at a time, you live all the days of your life.

Don't give up when you still have something to give. Nothing is really over until the moment you stop trying.

Don't be afraid to admit you are less than perfect. It is this fragile thread that binds us to each other.

Don't be afraid to encounter risks. It is by taking chances that we learn how to be brave.

Don't shut love out of your life by saying it is impossible to find. The quickest way to receive love is to give love; the fastest way to lose love is to hold it to tightly.

And the best way to keep love is to give it wings.

Don't dismiss your dreams. To be without dreams is to be without hope. To be without hope is to be without purpose.

Don't run through life so fast that you forget not only where you have been, but also where you are going. Life is not a race but a journey to be savored each step of the way.


"Life is like a camel; you can make it do anything except back up." Marcelene Cox



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