Fool me once…

Buy the new book, "Beaucoup Arlo & Janis!"Today's "Arlo & Janis!"
Back to the old cartoons. Current events are always a ready source of material for cartoonists. The idea for this 1998 A&J came directly from the news. There was an article making the rounds at that time saying precisely that: research indicated that one of the many effects of pregnancy upon women was an increase in intelligence. As Janis and most of the headlines phrased it, Arlo’s response was the obvious one. Sometimes, they write themselves, but not very often.
Thanks for all who ventured to the Facebook site “Arlo and Janis Fans” and joined the group. You shattered the ceiling of 500 members, which is what we set out to do. The master of ceremonies there, our friend Jim Young, was very pleased.

183 responses to “Fool me once…”

  1. Debbe:

    “Emb and cxp, way over my head, there’s such intelligent life in this Village…and then there’s me.”

    Don’t sell yourself short. Intelligence is not the same as knowledge. We’re both smart, probably as smart as most Villagers. We both also know some biochemistry, geology, and such. But I’d long forgotten what the mineral olivene consists of, and he surely knows more math than I do. Most of the knowledge we use here can be, and often is, learned by folks of average intelligence. For instance, I’m guessing many Villagers already know that 9-banded armadillos, the only kind occurring in the 48 states, typically bear genetically identical quadruplets. Now they all do. Peace, emb

  2. They say this is supposed to be the busiest shopping day of the season this year! Maybe that’s were everyone is?

    We are up to 560 members last count at the A&J facebook fan page (Yes, I am that Jim). We are having a blast over there. One of our members pulled up the A&J series from this page of a visit to Cuba that was very interesting in light of current events. You never know what you will find.

    We welcome anyone who would like to join us (except spammers) so if you are on Facebook drop by and if you like us let us know and we’ll bring you in. (Thanks for your help JJ and we’ll keep doing our thing.

    And as they say, Thanks for all the fish! 😉

  3. ” effects of pregnancy upon women was an increase in intelligence”
    But from what I understand, the effects of childbirth and for about a year after, women get stupider.
    At least that’s what happened to, my daughter.

  4. First, got to see on a Saturday, JJ. Secondly, if you think I am going to dispute that obvious fact, you are crazy. I am just going to let the research speak for itself.

  5. Jackie here in hospital in Tulsa with Mike. Pneumonia and lung complications from cancer and illness is critical. Girls and I are trying to plan my mom’s funeral and stay with him. Surgery to drain again on Monday. Wish I had good news.

    Love, Jackie

  6. Thanks all. I cannot tell you how much I have loved this man, not a romantic 0r fairy tale but truly loved through good and bad times, with and without money, hard work and often physical exhaustion for both of us. That is what love is.

    Losing both at the same time seems incomprehensible. The support you all give me is without price, a treasure.

    Love, JACKIE

  7. Jackie,

    What you wrote in your last post above, including your take on your and Mike’s bond, closely matches what wife and I went through four years ago, 16-28 Dec. ’10, except we had not lost anyone else recently. Wife had acute leukemia, but technically died of pneumonia. I am right there with you.

    Sounds like we were equally blessed. Peace, emb

  8. Jackie, this passage of Scripture was read at my sister’s service. I hope it gives you some measure of comfort, as it did me.

    “Peace I leave with you; my peace I give to you. Not as the world gives do I give to you. Let not your hearts be troubled, neither let them be afraid.” – John 14:27

    Love, Ghost

  9. Jackie, I cannot even fathom what you are going through right now. Please know that here, we are all friends, real virtual friends who care very much about you and your family. You have shared so much of your life through your postings….it’s as if I’ve known you all my life.

    You and yours will stay in my thoughts and prayers….take care of yourself, lady.


  10. Good morning Villagers…..

    Tis 23 degrees out there, and a real feel of 68 in here! And it’s supposed to get up to 50 degrees tomorrow…..according to one 🙂

    Mark, I logged on to their website and found out the info. I don’t know if it would be worth it, as I fall asleep early in the recliner after getting my belly full. I have an odd sleeping cycle. Besides, my husband and I differ on movies, and the remote is never too far from his reach.

    Emb…thanks, the world would be boring if we all knew the same things….armadillos, they are nature’s little tank 🙂

    GR 😉 I speak hen 🙂 sometimes I stand on the back deck and holler “chowww”, and for some weird reason they all hush, and then start cooing. I’ve three cages of cannibals in the front. I like to tease them with an egg…..I’ll crack it and hold it about three inches from the cages and they stretch out their necks and literally attack that egg until the white and yolk fall out of the shell. Sometimes they miss the egg and peck my fingers….ouch….ahh, simple minds and simple times humor me.


  11. Debbe:

    You are welcome. “. . . armadillos, they are nature’s little tank :).” I understand they are also among the more common road pizzas.

    Peace , emb

  12. Cartoon for Sunday, December 21, 2014:

    A reminder of how far we have come.

    A reminder of how much we might lose.

    A reminder that we are not nearly as prepared to survive with little as were our ancestors.

  13. Re: the above retro……I keep telling my son advice, and then I had “it took me 61 years to get this stupid!”

    And you are correct emb……..

    Not to be disheartening, but in going through MSN’s photos of the year, I found this one to be worthy….when a K-9 dog is killed in the line of duty, the assailant is tried as a murderer. Should be that way.

  14. Q. Why did the chicken cross the road?
    A. To show the armadillo that it can be done.

    A friend had a theory that armadillos are born dead by the side of a road, because that was the only place he ever saw one.

    Jean dear, the critter that just barely made it across the dark, rural two-lane highway in front of my car last night was indeed a ‘possum. I’ll bet it went back to the ‘possum den and bragged to all the other juvenile ‘possums about how brave it was to play “chicken” like that.

  15. I had a pet armadillo in Venezluea named Army. He did a circular route thru house and liked to go over the top of bed, rather than under it. He could open cabinet doors and would root thru contents, kicking all onto floor. It was his fatal flaw, as mom made stepdad take him and release him back into wild. Hardly fair I thought, as we had domesticated him.

    Mike is holding on but oxygen levels dropped badly few minutes ago when tech for breathing was in.

    Mike had pet skunk that lived in house and was neutered. I feed possoms and raccoons annd rabbits, squirrels who get pretty tame. I know I have shunks and they probably eat dog and cat food as well.

    I am following my own advice to John in Richmond. I was playing love songs since about 4 this morning, people we’d seen in concerts, music we’d listened to when we were young. I read the notes from people when I can and he is so polite, asks me to thank each one.

    Love, Jackie

  16. OK….so I google ‘do animals talk on Christmas Eve”…..found some interesting links. But I don’t think I’ll be going into the hen house on Christmas Eve at midnight……”chowww’……

  17. Jackie dear, if you collected all the hugs that we wish we could give you, you probably would be smothered!

    I found the following two quotes in an article on the sports page this morning and thought of you and your family in particular, but I believe they also apply to most of the folks in our Village:

    “We make a living by what we get, but we make a life by what we give.” Winston Churchill

    “All you can take with you is that which you’ve given to others.” seen on George Bailey’s office wall in It’s a Wonderful Life

    Love, Ruth Anne

  18. Jackie, as of about 1120 CST, you and Mike are being remembered [first names only] in the prayers of a churchful of United Methodists.

    All: If it’s the same as most years, many public radio stations will broadcast live, Wed. at 0900 CST, “Nine lessons and carols” from King’s College Chapel, in Cambridge Univ., UK. It will be 3pm there. We/I have listened for decades. Maybe she still does. Maybe she will be there.

    The readers of the 9 lessons will be from various parts of the UK and maybe elsewhere. The choirs are splendid and the mix of reader regional accents delightful. If live, the sound will reach your ears before it reaches those in the last rows of the long Chapel bldg. Maybe you can stream it live on your cptr. from Classical MPR. The program may be repeated later Wed. or maybe Thur. Check your local public radio station.

    Peace, emb

  19. Jackie: “Mike had pet skunk that lived in house and was neutered. I feed possoms and raccoons and rabbits, squirrels who get pretty tame. I know I have shunks and they probably eat dog and cat food as well.”

    I hope the skunk was also descented. The only critter in that list that might not eat dog and cat food are the rabbits, but maybe they do. What food do you put out for rabbits? The only critter I’d prefer not to try as food is skunk. Actually, I’ve tried the other 4; all are good.

  20. Jackie, I hope your outdoor dogs/cats are all up-to-date on rabies shots as raccoons and skunks are notorious carriers. Will be waiting for better news on Mike tomorrow. God be with you both.

  21. EMB,

    We have a lot of armadillos killed on the road here, along with quite a few skunks as well. Driving around Texas, when my daughters were younger, we’d speculate on why armadillos/skunks are so frequently killed. They came up with two possible hypotheses:

    1) “Skunks are stupid”
    2) They have dead-end (or poorly adapted to modern circumstance) survival instincts… Spraying a moving, 70-mph, big rig doesn’t do anything to improve survival. Squashed skunk is the likely result. Likewise, the jump and curl of an armadillo does little to ensure survival when faced with a motor vehicle.

    While I prefer the concise, clear language of hypothesis number one, it is likely that the second one could be more easily tested. I wonder what other previously valuable behaviors in other animals might be considered to be poorly adapted? For humans, overeating, or promiscuity, possibly?

  22. Jean dear, someone once told me some guy from South Alabama made a fortune exporting armadillos to North Alabama and selling them as “Possum on the Half Shell”.

  23. While we were listening to Mel Tormé’s classic Christmas song, a friend told this one:

    The big chess tournament was taking place at the Plaza in New York. After the first day’s competition, many of the winners were sitting around in the foyer of the hotel talking about their matches and bragging about their wonderful play. After a few drinks they started getting louder and louder until finally, the desk clerk couldn’t take any more and kicked them out.

    The next morning the Manager called the clerk into his office and told him there had been many complaints about his being so rude to the hotel guests….instead of kicking them out, he should have just asked them to be less noisy. The clerk responded, “I’m sorry, but if there’s one thing I can’t stand, it’s chess nuts boasting in an open foyer.”

  24. Good morning Villagers…..

    Got it….panel one from “Christmas Releases” is panel one in today’ real time strip…..what an eye, what an eye 🙂

    …and a blessed Monday to all.

    Jackie…..still praying ……………………………………………………………….Amen.

  25. Lady Mindy, I hope your AWOL friend and employee turned up with nothing worse than a sheepish expression on her face.

    Denise, I haven’t forgotten about your husband, either.

  26. This morning’s A&J strikes a quasi-respondent chord. As a kid in Miami lo those many decades ago, there were no fresh-cut Fraser firs to be had, and so the choice was an artificial tree or a Scotch pine cut in August and needle-free by the time it hit south Florida.

    As an adult living in New England in a house with a cathedral ceiling, I have gone overboard. I have continually cajoled my wife into having trees with heights of up to 14 feet. Our new home has a more conventional 8-foot ceiling. Not quite table-top territory, but well on the way in my way of thinking.

  27. Thank you, Ghost. We really are a Village…thank you, Jimmy.

    And thank you, Jimmy, for the Christmas week sneak peek panels!. (I’m glad you haven’t turned into Snuffy Smith.)

  28. Thanks, Trucker. Chestnuts? That is en route to becoming one. Heard/saw a version of it a few years ago. As puns go, perhaps that’s relatively new.

    Peace, emb

  29. During the last several years of my sister’s life, she and I decided to forego having our own trees and instead put up and decorated a full-size tree at my Mom’s, since that is where we gathered for our Christmas meal and gift exchange. Last year, with my sister having just passed away, she did not have (or want) a tree at all.

    This year, I was determined that she would have tree, even if it were a small, table-top one…which it is. Perhaps it’s not as impressive as a six- or twelve-foot tall one, but as with gifts, it’s the thought that counts.

    I’m talking off this week to spend more time with my Mom. Somehow, that seems very much what I should do right now.

  30. I’m always a bit jealous of those who have had good relationships with their mothers. My mom & I were always at loggerheads until after she had a malignant brain tumor removed… and was left paralyzed on one side… her last 18 months were the best we had together. She finally accepted me and my choices in life and allowed me to love her. More and more, year by year, I am beginning to accept her and her choices and to miss her.

  31. Read the last 4 or 5 comments and that is where I’ve been, spending a week with my mother. We both enjoyed it very much. I’m sure that I missed a lot and will never catch up, but here are my Christmas plans. I will go see the movie “Unbreakable”, then I will face away from North Korea, bend over and drop my pants.

  32. I went back and scanned this page and didn’t see anything since way up there from Jackie so I’m just hoping for the best. MTM type group hug. Dog saves Fl woman from bear attack. Bless that dog!

  33. Jerry – Has anyone told you lately you are awesome? So unexpected, but so perfect. Thank you for the laugh.

    Jackie – We are all there with you in spirit.

  34. This brand new $60,000+ 707-hp Dodge Challenger SRT Hellcat was crashed one hour after being picked up from the dealership. Hahahahahahahahaha!–/YXBwaWQ9eW5ld3M7Zmk9ZmlsbDtoPTQzNztpbD1wbGFuZTtweW9mZj0wO3E9NzU7dz02NDA-/

    I can laugh because the owner/driver and his two passengers were not injured. Obviously, the same cannot be said for the vehicle. High-performance driving lessons before taking delivery might have been a wise choice. And a wise investment.

    As reminder, have a safe Christmas. Don’t be that guy.

  35. Jackie, still sending hugs.

    Ghost Sweetie, then that’s exactly where you should be, and give your Mom a hug from me.

    Jerry, you are officially my hero!

  36. Everyone: Take care and stay strong. Nobody distressed within reach, but things change. I’m on hug alert. Jackie and others: prayers.

    Christmas dinner at First Lutheran, ham, not lutefisk. It rotates among several large churches. I got on the front page of the local daily at the Community Holiday TG meal. In the far corner of the dining area, blue sweatshirt, trademark bald head + white tonsure, cute ponytail on my right, whom I hadn’t met before.

    Remember, 9 Lessons and Carols live from Cambridge, UK, Wed. 0900, repeated on Classical MPR at 1700, but the repeat may be at other times elsewhere.

    Peace, emb

  37. Good morning Villagers….

    Jerry’s back!!!!!! Dang I’d like to be there when you “moon’ NK….not that I’m into bare butts, but for the laugh….and yes, Jerry, you do have a unique sense of humor that blends in quite well in here…you make me laugh.

    I didn’t know Joe Cocker died…..I loved his music and his stage performances….I think John Bullushi (?) imitated him the best…as one poster said on this sight….he went out the window she came in through:

    GR 😉 what a cello player….thanks. You have come up with broad arrangements of Christmas songs…..”more on that later”…..hmmmmmm?????? I’m glad you are spending the week with your mother….I plan on seeing mine today.

    I was a wreck by the time I left work yesterday….I got stuck with two 15 year olds at work….I wanted to go for “Skittles’” throat by the time he left yesterday. He is starting to suffer from SPC…..short person complex. He made me so mad yesterday, I told him not to EVEN come in today.

    Ya’ll have a blessed day….

  38. Jackie….how did Mike’s surgery go yesterday….you had said something about ‘drainage’…..please let us know…..and know we need to know how you are holding up.

    We love you……………

  39. Jackie, still thinking and praying for you. John in Richmond, Texas, I am still thinking and praying for you, as well. I can’t imagine the pain you are both suffering.

  40. Christmas and holiday and I-love-you-folks hugs to all. Many of us challenged and in turmoil right now, but many stepping up with advice, affirmation, and quiet affection. God bless us, every one.

  41. I am seeing a pattern between “Christmas Releases” and the daily strips this week. 🙂

    Merry Christmas to all and happy snowball fighting if you’ve got snow.

  42. Yesterday’s strip still up? I’m not complaining? It’s just unusual. There may be a tiny chance of a few snowflakes around here Christmas Eve, but probably not. We had a totally white Christmas in 1989 and we probably only get one in a lifetime around here.

  43. Jackie, we’ll always be here for you. You can talk about anything that you like and we’ll never interrupt. We are a village but we are also the A & J Army and we can’t be whipped.

  44. Our dear Jackie – I am at a loss for words but so grateful to learn from the beautiful expressions of others here. Much love is flowing to you and your family.

  45. Jackie, I was traveling today to visit with my girls and their families for Christmas. You have been in my thoughts and I am so sad for you. I pray that you will be comforted by that peace which comes from our Heavenly Father.

  46. Very high winds, lightening and heavy rain moved in just before 9:30. The kitties headed for the bedroom and I suggested that we do the same. I got a laugh in reply and then the lights went out ( for a few seconds). We adjourned for awhile(Lou Christie comes to mind.) and the weather has calmed somewhat for now. It occurred to me that JJ could very well be in the dark and have no power. He hopefully has a generator and is safe , whatever the conditions.

  47. OK, today’s strip is up. Reminds me of traditions from Christmas past. Ah well. I don’t have any idea how the strip is posted, but I hope that is a good indication for JJ.

  48. Good morning Villagers….

    I love this ‘family’…..and I want to thank one and all for your love and empathy for one another. We are strong as one, as Jerry said we are the ‘A & J Army’ and can’t be whipped.

    Chaos in the packing room just as I was doing the last skid. Ian and Andrew left on an errand, left me alone with a 15 year old, and the packer quit…broke…and neither one of us knew how to fix it. So, we started hand packing them as they came in the rod conveyor from inside the hen house. THEN….I get a call from the other hen house…..they just got the monthly inspection, and the inspector was on his way to our hen house…..but you know what, I panicked for nothing……inspection went well, had a nice chat with the inspector and wished him a blessed Christmas.

    Didn’t make it in to see Mom yesterday afternoon, will today though. Got home about 4ish and I was whooped…..and in bed by 8:30.

    Ah, Christmas Eve, I love Christmas Eve…..there is something very spiritual about it. Ya’ll have a blessed day with your loved ones.

    love to all, Debbe

  49. Jackie, love to you and your family. “Lord, support me all the day long, until the shadows lengthen and the evening comes and the busy world is hushed, and the fever of life is over, and my work is done. Then, Lord, in your mercy grant me a safe lodging, and peace at the last.”

  50. Ok, no strip for today. Damage is heavy in Hattiesburg and many injuries. I haven’t heard of any fatalities, but JJ is apparently out of touch. He could have power but no telephone or internet service. The sun is shining here but my brother in Tallahassee is getting the weather now. If you are reading this and you are a friend of JJ’s and you have a cell number please give him a call. Jackie may also be in an area where there is damage. I don’t know where she lives, but as we enjoy the day we will keep them in mind.

  51. Jerry in FL, report I saw last night said 4 fatalities, all in MS. Jackie is in OK, don’t think they had the tornadoes.

    It’s likely JJ was taking this week off for Christmas, anyway. Hope the bad weather left them alone. They got enough with Katrina, etc.

  52. Is there a possibility, Sandcastler, that your hearing issue is service connected? Mine is, and didn’t show up for over thirty years. If so, apply for it and see what happens. Even if it’s decided to be “zero percent, no compensation,” you’ll still be entitled to free hearing aids, batteries and audiology services for life. And the worst thing that can happen is that they turn you down.

  53. wife sleeps a little bit more every day, but still kickin enough to seem to be round for awhile and right now it’s a house full which at least takes her mind a little off the constant pain, the pain ebbs and flows and she can take all the morphine she wants, but she always has at least a little

  54. AND check this out, I apologize to a lot of you who will have no clue what I’m talking about, but hey sometimes that works the other way too, I like Youtube, I watch weird stuff like 1955 Buick sales training films- SO – my son-in-law is a big time silicon valley guy and works with and for Apple a lot, use to have walk right in back door privileges at Steve Jobs’s house. So anyway, Steve Jobs apparently hated Google; and Youtube is Google and he told my Soninlaw to get youtube off Apple TV, SIL said he’d get on it and knowing that I like it, he never got rid of it, and then Jobs died. I said are you B S ing me? Are you telling me that I, John Czach here in my house on the corner of Powderhorn and Esperanza in Richmond Texas are responsible for youtube being on Apple TV ? He said yep, and knowing him, I have no reason to doubt him

  55. John – I’m not an Apple user but many of my friends are (plus there’s my husband’s iPad). So, on their behalf, I thank you for the gift that you inadvertently bestowed upon them 🙂

    JJ – Thank you for the gift of this Village. Anyone who has ever doubted the “kindness of strangers” need only read through the comments here. It’s unlikely that most of us will ever meet face to face, yet the love, concern, and support for each other as hardships are endured is as real as though we lived on the same block.

    Peace to all of you,
    Ruth Anne

  56. And unto you, also, Ruth Anne.

    I passed Wally World twice today. Both times, there were traffic jams *just to get into the parking lot*.

    I once thought that Christmas Eve gift shoppers were all procrastinators. A number of years ago, I came to the not-so-cheerful realization that all too many of them are people who live from paycheck to paycheck and/or who basically would be unable to buy Christmas gifts without receiving a Christmas bonus from their employers.

    I no longer curse overflowing parking lots and long checkout lines on Christmas Eve.

  57. You can always request to have your hearing issue declared service connected if there’s any reason to think that it might be. (Back in ’72, my ship was in Tonkin Gulf doing shore support. When I was topside, I had hearing protection. However, I slept in the forward berthing compartment, two decks down from the gun mount and about forty feet aft of it with no hearing protection. One morning I woke up and learned that I’d slept through a 40 round bombardment. They had me tested by an outside hearing specialist and they found a classic artillery notch in my audiogram so they accepted my claim.) If you were subjected to Very Loud Noises in the service, it’s worth a shot because if they agree, anything hearing related is free and you have a higher priority for care than somebody without a disability. As always with the VA, it can take a few months, but it’s worth the wait.

    BTW, that higher priority even counts on things unrelated to your disability. After my first cataract was removed, I was told that it might be six months before I could get the other one taken care of so I asked them to put me on a waiting list in case there was a cancellation. I ended up having it done only six weeks later, and I’ve always wondered whether that extra priority put me at the front of the line.

  58. Sandcastler, contact me via Symply Fargone. SF has my email address and this permission to give same to you. His email address has been posted here a few times; he’s a “go-between” .

  59. Thanks for the input, sideburns. In my experience, many things in the armed service involved Very Loud Noises. I’ll keep that in mind if I ever develop hearing issues.

  60. About this time of day on a Christmas Eve long, long ago and far, far away, a friend of mine who managed a small loan company was holding down the fort along with his assistant manager, having let the rest of the staff go home at noon. They were also partaking of some liquid Christmas cheer. In walks a guy who stated he needed a loan to buy Christmas gifts for his family.

    “Why, sure!” exclaimed my friend, overcome with The Spirit of the Christmas Season (as well as the Spirit of Lynchburg, Tennessee).

    “How much do you need?” asked his assistant, also overcome with The Spirit of the Christmas Season (as well as the Spirit of Lynchburg, Tennessee).

    And so, forthwith, and with a bare minimum of identification and documentation, and without aid of a credit report, the loan was granted, a check for $500 was cut, and the guy was on his way.

    They of course never saw that guy again. Later investigation reveled that “that guy” didn’t even exist, except on paper. But what could be expected from a small loan company manager who was known to approve loans to attractive females who did not otherwise qualify. (Not that he attached any strings to those approvals, nor that such approvals were uncommon in that industry. They even had a name for them…”leg loans”.)

  61. Ghost, some of them might have been shopping for supplies for unexpected guests, too. You know, the ones who show up unannounced, or with the bare minimum of lead time.

    This is a strange Christmas, as far as family travels go. My brother and his wife have gone to Indiana to spend the holiday with their daughter who is in college there, and my sister and brother-in-law are coming here for the first time since 2012. My sister just called my mom today to tell her they expected to be here tonight sometime.

    Jackie, still praying for you and Mike and your family. And ditto for John in Richmond, TX.

    Have a safe and Merry Christmas, everybody.

  62. GR 😉 I’ll see your Josh Groban with John Berry (ok, I’ll give you an ace of spades for the video…what movie did that come from?)

    Mark….it’s not strange…it’s Christmas, I’m excited for you and your visitors….does your niece go to IU?

    neighbor just dropped off homemade, white chocolate pretzels….yum. (I drop off double yolkers, he and his wife have two daughters and a two year old son) they are good neighbors to have.

  63. Debbe – I suspect that by the standards of what you and those in points north would consider winter, it’s NEVER winter here! I’m in central Florida. Those of us who were born and raised here shiver when the temperature drops below 60.

  64. Will be going to my daughter’s tomorrow AM, coming back Friday nite. My SO’s daughter will be bringing him Christmas dinner tomorrow. He assures me that he will be find until I get back.
    There is a lot of love and concern here in the Village. That is why I am a proud resident.
    Merry Christmas to all!

  65. Just after noon today Husband and our younger daughter left the house to go to Daughter’s workplace (one of them, anyway) to collect her paycheck. They hadn’t been gone long when Daughter came back in and said that as they were going down the Mountain a young woman in a sports car, coming up the Mountain and talking on her cell phone, had hit them, denting her car and knocking the front bumper off Husband’s car. They were, however, going to continue on as soon as the sheriff had finished getting the information he needed for the report. About a half hour later I got a call from Husband. The car had had a flat tire and I should come pick them up. I got to where the car was pulled over to find that what had really happened was this: as they were going around a curve the tire, damaged when the bumper got knocked off in the first accident, blew out causing the car to swerve first to the left, and then to the right as Husband tried to stay in control. They went off the road and up a small embankment, but happily did not roll over as Husband managed to turn the wheels and land them upright in a ditch. The sheriff’s office was called (the same sheriff that caught the first accident caught this one, too) and he called a tow truck. The mechanic at the shop said in his opinion the car is totaled, as there is so much damage to the undercarriage. All I care about is that Husband and Daughter walked out, and while shaken up neither are hurt.

    Happy Christmas to all and to all a Good Night!

  66. Copy-edited the weekly UMC bulletin [though I w/b playing hooky Sun., going to FLC to hear a favorite preacher], + the monthly newsletter. Also stole a couple of high-fat goodies from the lounge kitchen’s fridge, leftovers from last Sunday’s decadent bake sale. Not sure what all this has to do with the baby Jesus, who was probably born in Nazareth, at home. But it is quite the story.

    Heard the 9 Lessons and Carols from King’s College, Cambridge, live at 9 on the UMC office radio [top-notch sec’y/bookkeeper didn’t know about them = star in my crown for Kultur]. Heard the rebroadcast at 1700 at home, at greater volume, all 3 radios. Christmas dinner at noon at FLC Thur. So far, I’ve kept w/in my fat-gram allowance, but may go over tomorrow. Christmas email letter is done, may send it out tonight.

  67. one more from me = = at my work, (I go in only maybe twice a week with the wife cancer thing) only the lobby and a door to the shop is downstairs, our offices are upstairs. I envision a sitcom scenario where apparently everyone is saying, “well, we can’t copy or print anything, Staples delivered all the boxes of copy paper downstairs, but John isn’t here to carry them up”

  68. So, Jean dear, you’re sure all that was not part of a convoluted plan that would end with Husband purchasing a red sports car? 🙂 Seriously, I’m glad everyone was OK. Too much ongoing tragedy in the Village as it is.

    And a very Merry Christmas to my very favorite six-foot-tall redhead. 😉

  69. Debbe – Here. Just spent the day sleeping so I can work tonight. Blacklight pawed through the gifts, found her mousie, and started romping through the house with it – apparently she thought she had waited long enough for it.

    Positive thoughts for all those who need it, and best wishes for a safe and happy Christmas to my fellow Villagers.

  70. Mike left us a little before 1 p.m. today. He mercifully left us with a quick and less painful death/ surrounded by his two daughters, my son in law and me. We held his hands and talked to him, continueing long after his spirit had departed. I stayed almost every minute, following my own advice to talk to him, look at his face so I could remember, remembering the good times and the joy.

    He sailed away on the seas of eternity, where I hope he will meet his heroes and inspiration of a lifetime. The outpouring of love for him has been so wonderful, heartfelt and real. He was a humble and talented man, the best man I have ever known.

    Losing him and my mom the same week is so painful. We will have a joint service at my girls’ request. In this year I have lost the most important four people with whom I traveled so many miles of life.

    Your words have helped me so much this week and all through this ordeal.

    Love, Jackie

  71. Jackie, you have my deepest sympathy. I know what it’s like to lose a loved one at a time like this. (My grandmother died on Christmas Eve, and even though we’re Jewish, it’s still a time for family and friends.) I wish there were something better that I could say, but at least Mike’s passing was peaceful and painless.

  72. Jackie, you are very brave. A deeply saddened and thoughtful Christmas Eve for the Village, and for everyone who knew and loved Mike. The love will live on.

  73. Dearest Jackie: I am so very sorry for your loss, and I cannot even imagine the distress you are feeling as the result of the double loss you have just suffered. I hope you will understand when I say that I am thankful that your mother and your husband left this world relatively quickly and relatively painlessly. (I say that after spending seven and a half months watching my sister die last year.) Not many things frighten me, but a slow death from metastatic disease, and the pain normally associated with it, is one that does.

    It seems obvious that you and Mike had a sizable network of friends and fellow enthusiasts (something that tells me much about the kind of people you are), and I hope you will be able to draw strength from them, as well as from your surviving family. Meanwhile, know that you are very much in my thoughts, as I’m sure you are in those of your many other “friends you’ve not yet met” here in the Village.

  74. Jackie, I hope our words will bring you some comfort during this difficult time… few of us have lost loved ones that quickly… but we all have lost loved ones and know that pain in some measure.

    “Praise be to the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, the Father of compassion and the God of all comfort, who comforts us in all our troubles, so that we can comfort those in any trouble with the comfort we ourselves receive from God.” (2 Corinthians 1:3-4 NIV)

  75. Ghost, the love is so real but it happened because we made a lot of friends thru the net and we wrote and talked and shared a lot like this. I decided that we wanted to meet them, to connect in person and so Sail Oklahoma was born, a big family reunion of internet friends who came to our back yard and we all celebrated together a love of wooden boats and all forms of being on the water.

    The first year my “webmaster” said we might get six boats to come. And a lot morec

    Hundreds of people and boats have come over the years each year, from foreign lands, almost every state in America. It is more the chance to communicate with others and share love and knowledge that brings them thousands of miles.

    Mike got to travel and sail other boats but he usually built a new one each year, touring them all over at our expense. No one paid us, it was love we were rewarded with. Mike said the last six years were the happiest in his life, getting to do something he loved so much.

    One of our editors ran an article on the tallship Ellisa down in Galveston, TX. Mike would have loved it, as he was a volunteer who had qualified to climb the rigging to the highest point as part of her crew to sail her.

    Net friends are real. Remember pen pals?

    Love, Jackie

  76. Jackie, God’s peace and comfort be with you at this time. I am glad you joined the Village and that we have been some help to you, even though we have never met. From what you have said, I know you have courage and strength, and you will be able to carry on. Thank you for sharing your joys and struggles with us.

  77. Jackie, I am so sorry. You, your daughters, and your whole family will be in my prayers, and may all those close to you bring you much comfort. You have had an amazing journey with Mike, and I hope those memories will keep him close to you every day. Thank you for sharing your life with us.

  78. Keep on doing what you love and the love that the two of you had will always be there. My father-b.12-19-1925, d.12-15-2007, and I am closer to him now than ever before.

  79. Words sometimes seem inadequate, but, when we read the message they carry, they can help a lot. When I was 19, my live-in grandmother died 3 days before Christmas. We carried on with the Christmas services and, as was traditional in my family, even had a festive dinner after the funeral. Twenty years later, my beloved & respected father-in-law died on Christmas day. While my wife was able to get there, I was not. Again, words learned from scripture had to suffice, and did. It helped that my son and I were at my parents’ place when the call came. Pop’s ministerial expertise really helped us.
    Draw on your faith & family, Jackie, remembering the better times more than the others.

  80. Jackie, I so prayed for a Christmas Miracle, sadly, it was in the way Mike left you, mercifully quick and painless. I cried. You will draw strength from the adventures and love you two shared, and you will see him every day in the eyes of your daughter.

    God’s blessings on you and yours.

    love, Debbe

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