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Posts Tagged ‘miscelaneous’

I’m fortunate to have a lot of wildlife around me, even though I live on the outskirts of a large city.  There are several herds of deer that live in my neighborhood, and one morning, I looked out my window and was delighted to see not one, but three little fawns (feasting on my plants…lol, oh well, how can I have a grudge against these little babies?).  I hope you enjoy the photos!

FAWN

Fleeting

Always timid

Wanders

Navigator

Oh dainty doe

You are so graceful

Quietly wandering to and fro

Sometimes you rest under the trees, finding a dry spot from the rain

Waiting out the storm, so that you may continue your plight

The constant quest for food

You are so pleasant to gaze upon

A reminder of all that is ephemeral

One should delight in your presence

And never take for granted

The innocence you bring to the world.

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“A storm builds, and its coming will cleanse the World”

Lo! We have listened to many a story of our forefathers, their splendor of old, their mighty heirs and warrior deeds!  Many a son of warriors old, taken by the forces of savage foes.

Whence came this seed of evil?  Born of a father from Ny-an-za, in the “Dark Continent.”

The mother of evil, from Wi-chi-ta, a far away land named “The New World.”  The seedling to be born a half-breed son.

The young lad had not a decent upbringing;  a father and mother of nomadic ways, he found guidance through a false prophet, who resided in the windy city.

The prophet-noir did instill obscure and profane thoughts into the impressionable young mind.  The lad had sought out strange writings by mad-men; twisted ideas of “taking from one man, to give to another”,  his education grew in the wrong direction- it was too late- he had sealed his fate.

Surrounded by faceless soulless men and women; he learned his craft well, to be a soothsayer and captured the feeble minded through wicked spells of deception.

From humble beginnings, paltry and weak, he grew to a tyrant as time brought change to the world;  he slyly throve under heaven in power and pride.

As he tasted a sip of power he knew, he had to take it all for himself;  nothing to stop him- the lawmakers that were trusted to protect the masses, they also fell victim to his spells.

Woe the fate of a great Republic- sabotaged by this monster!

He had planned his campaign; through any means to take power, to rule over all.  His ideas were to be followed, none may object; strike down those who dare criticize his will.

His rise to the Apex of power came to pass, swift like a thief in the night.  By covert  planning; many opened the doors for him, through nefarious ways.

In his court of advisers; a haggard woman of power, took him for her pawn.  She vouched for him; a lie through and through….that he may be eligible to be supreme leader over all.

Although the contract of the Republic stated only a natural citizen may rule; she convinced the judges, that her words were true.

Once in power, this usurper from the “Dark Continent” needed not abide by the laws.  The oligarchy ruled; looked the other way, when transgressions were committed against the common people.

Those who had power, had committed treason against the Republic; how to annihilate them to restore peace and prosperity through the Great Land?, for which many a brave warrior had met mortality to protect.

Oh the fate of a great nation, only to collapse under such duress!

Everything that was hidden  will be revealed; and as the sun overcomes the darkness, will a new day dawn with grace?

Annihilate– To destroy something

Apex– The highest point of something, the top

Covert– Secret, not intended to be known, seen, or found out

Forefather– Male ancestor, usually one who died long ago

Haggard– Appearing worn, unruly

Nefarious– Evil, utterly immoral or wicked

Nomadic or Nomad- Someone who wanders from place to place

Paltry– Insignificant or unimportant

Profane– Irreverent, showing disrespect for God, any deity or religion

Throve– Past tense of thrive

Treason– Betrayal of country

Tyrant– An absolute ruler who exercises power cruelly and unjustly

Usurper- Seize something without right: to use something without the right to do so

Whence– From where- from what place or source

Definitions from Encarta.com, and The American Heritage Dictionary 3rd edition.

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I’m thinking to myself…”This sucks”, as I have been pretty spoiled when it comes to “work”.  I have mostly worked for myself, and prefer to keep it that way.  But, the work I was doing….well….lets just say “commission only” isn’t working out.

And NOW, of all times to have to look for work, it is just brutal…….the economy is on a nose dive to hell, and guess what?  There aren’t any jobs! (wait….I take that back….I could work at McDonalds….or somewhere like that…..I’d rather gag myself).

To begin, I have a real problem with the whole application process.  I am not joking, when I tell you I had to complete four online tests to see if I met the minimum requirements for knowledge regarding software, grammar, math, and a psychological evaluation.  And this was just the beginning!  Then, I had to go to an interview, which it wasn’t really an interview, mostly to turn in all the paperwork I had to bring, such as seven years…..yes seven….of W2’s of my past earnings.  Oh yeah, this is just the beginning of the “process”, there is a background check, and of course to top it….a drug screen test!  Lucky me!

One time, after completing a “personality evaluation”, it immediately told me, “The answers show us you are not a good fit for this position”.  It then went on to tell me, I should not apply for any other positions there until after six months.  I was answering these questions truthfully, so after that incident, I changed my strategy to answer according to what I believed they wanted for an answer.

Tomorrow I go to get my drug screen test, and I just spoke with my sister, and she told me, “Don’t eat any poppy seed muffins before you go…..that will show up as a positive.”  Is it true?  Eating poppy seed muffins will cause one to fail their drug test?  Anyone know?  Since I’m on the subject, if anyone knows of any other tips that I need to know about….please do share it with me.

I can’t go into details of the other seven pages of online “stuff” I had to fill out…such as “contract agreement”, “authorization for background check”, etc.  I mean it is a two or three day ordeal….just filling out paperwork (and you don’t know if you actually get the job, until AFTER these verifications are completed).

from: Platinumtestgroup.com

I can’t help but think to myself, “I can thank all the former criminals and liars for all this paperwork I have to do now….just for a job”.

So, I’m handing over my life history, all in good faith that they aren’t going to steal my identity, or lose one of those many W-2 forms I gave them (all with my social on them too).  I’m thinking to myself, “This better be worth it”, or I just wasted three days of my life.

Whatever happened to just filling out a one page application and shaking hands over the deal?  I miss the good old days when applying for a job was simple.

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Just before the 2002/2003 school year, I had completed the “alternative” teaching certification in order to become a “certified” teacher.  For those of you who don’t know what that is, it is a program that most states have for those who already have a college degree,( but not in teaching), but who think they might want to go into teaching, they may sign up for an “accelerated” training program, where at the end, you may apply to be a teacher in public or private schools.

This program was designed to aid school districts in finding teachers, as there always seems to be a shortage of them.

Only after I paid the fee, and completed this program, did I find out that not all districts want “alternative” certified teachers, and the district I lived in, well, they were the last resort for teachers they were looking for….(I was screwed).

Anyway, I had been substitute teaching for my district, when I received a call for a “long-term” substitute position.  What this meant was basically I did everything a real teacher did, attendance, parent-teacher meetings, assignments, grades,  and of course had  six classes of about 25 to 30 kids each.

I went ahead and took the long-term position, thinking this would be great experience, and would better my chances of getting hired as a full-time teacher.  (If you don’t know about school districts….who you know is a BIG factor in getting a job….I didn’t know anyone of great importance, so…well, I never became a teacher).

But, I do look back on the experience with an appreciation of teachers and the crap they put up with.  Maybe it was a blessing in disguise?

So, I was going to teach English Literature for juniors, I was excited, I love Literature, and well, this was perfect.  It was around the middle of the school year, and the teacher received notice he was to be deployed to Iraq, this is why they needed a long-term substitute.

Before each class started, it is always good to have a “warm-up” assignment on the chalk board, so that the students can quietly settle in, while taking role.  I also wanted to get to know the students I would be working with, so the first couple of days, I presented this warm up to them:

1: Where are you from?

2: Where would you like to travel to, and why?

3: Who is the most important person in your life? Why?

4: Is the glass half empty or half-full?

5: If you were to die, what would you like to be written on your epitaph?

Yeah, I know that last one is kind of morbid….but…no one needs to be taught more than teenagers that they are not immortal.

So I was doing some cleaning out of files recently, and I ran accross these that I had saved.

Pretty normal response huh?

Pretty basic.....except for the "something weird"

Pepperoni Pizza? what? so random.....

Ok....kind of weird....a future nudist here?

Ah....the gangster.....nice to know

A true patriot....she want's to be burried with a full metal jacket & M16

Here lies the most sexiest man on this planet? lol

Of couse, I had to save the funniest for last….typical teen huh?

I enjoyed my classes, and tried to be a good influence on all of them.  After finding these, it made me smile, and I wonder what ever became of them.

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Because I am tired of hearing about all these naive Americans who travel to foreign and dangerous countries, and then get “caught” by the authorities over there or even worse, caught by “tribesmen”, I felt it necessary to provide this helpful information for those planning to travel to these dangerous places in the future.

The U.S. Government has a website you can visit, to figure out what countries are safe, and what countries (if you had any sense), you would stay away from.

PLEASE, if you plan to travel to some exotic far away place…..CHECK THIS SITE FIRST:

http://travel.state.gov/travel/travel_1744.html

Yemen: Country specific information: This link has everything you need to know about the country. It is valuable information about safety, recent news, entry/exit requirements, crime, medical insurance, plus much more.

http://travel.state.gov/travel/cis_pa_tw/cis/cis_1061.html

This information is provided for each country you chose to research or read about.

The following is only a partial excerpt from the web site, under the Warnings section:

Yemen

February 25, 2010

The Department of State warns U.S. citizens of the high security threat level in Yemen due to terrorist activities.  The Department recommends that American citizens defer non-essential travel to Yemen.  American citizens remaining in Yemen despite this warning should monitor the  U.S. Embassy website and should make contingency emergency plans.  This replaces the Travel Warning for Yemen issued June 26, 2009.

Interpretation:  DONT go there unless you HAVE TO.

To read the article about the couple caught by “tribesmen” in Yemen, you can find the link here:

http://www.islamtribune.com/2010/05/25/armed-tribesmen-kidnap-us-couple-in-yemen.html

This is my random information for you today…..hope it helps.

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I like to visit New Orleans whenever possible, but not for the famous Mardi Gras, there are other things about that city that draws me to it.

The city and its people are rather laid back, I like that kind of atmosphere, a carefree style without concern about anything. Most of the people are friendly, and you can strike up a conversation without getting a sour look in return for speaking to a total stranger. Also, their accents of Creole mixed “French” is quite interesting to listen to.

A local getting ready for the day

I go for the authentic Cajun food, I can’t get enough of those wonderful spices they cook with. This last time we went, I had the “full Cajun” dinner, it consisted of Jambalaya, with spicy sausage, dirty rice, and of course some gumbo….it was like I died and went to heaven (gee I hope there’s Cajun food in heaven).

Another thing so compelling about the city is just the beauty of the architecture of the buildings. Many of the buildings were built in the late 1700’s, and the styles you will find are, Creole cottage, Creole townhouse, American townhouse, Shotgun house, and Double-Gallery homes. Many of these homes are surrounded by beautiful azaleas, and old oak trees. A good way to see these homes is by riding on one of the streetcars, such as the “St. Charles” line. This one passes many antebellum mansions, historical monuments, the Audubon Zoological Gardens, and Loyola and Tulane Universities.

A local Art Gallery

I do not advise going there in the heat of summer, but rather plan to go in spring or in the fall. If you have never been, there is a good reason for this advice. It is not a very clean city and garbage cans litter the back alleys and they are even posted out front of some establishments. I suppose the cans are there because it is a city where people are allowed to walk around with drink in hand (and not get stopped by the police).

Note the garbage cans lined up in the street to the right

New Orleans is classified as one of the most haunted cities in the United States. Given its history and how it was founded, it is no wonder it has this title or has so many sightings of ghosts. It is founded on a huge area of swampland, and was considered an ideal area to build because of its location on the Mississippi River.

The French believed it would be a good area for trading, so it was established in 1718, and built by prisoners that were sent over from France. These prisoners were the first residents of New Orleans, a population of thieves, murderers, and rapists. The living conditions were horrible, given that there were many mosquitoes, alligators, snakes, and disease. All of this made a perfect atmosphere for hauntings and ghosts.

The first time we visited, we stayed at Le Pavillon Hotel. It was built in 1907, and is listed as a member of historic hotels of America. It has many antiques and beautiful chandeliers throughout, a very elegant atmosphere.

Le Pavillon Hotel

Lobby in the Pavillon

It is said to have four resident ghosts, a teenage girl named Ada, from the 1840’s, a young man from the 1920’s era, and an aristocratic couple, also believed to be from the 1920’s. It is known for inexplicable sounds and smells, voices and poltergeist activity.

When we stayed there, one night I woke up hearing voices in the hallway….it was around 1:30 or 2:00 am. Nothing really that scary for me. However our most recent stay in New Orleans, we were staying at The Ambassador Hotel (not really that great, but the price was right).

The first night, I woke up due to the noises in our room. It is hard to describe what it was, but it sounded like someone playing a game of “jacks” on the floor. I could hear the sound of metal (the jacks) and what sounded like a little rubber ball bouncing off the floor. There were creaking sounds like someone standing there also. The whole hotel has hardwood planks that run throughout it, and it creaks whenever you walk on it. Sometimes it sounded like someone moving a step stool, flipping it over and over. I was tired, so managed to go back to sleep…even with the noises.

My husband says it was my imagination, and in his mind, that is all it was. Even though I woke him up to ask him if he could hear it also.

His response was that it was just hearing someone walking on the other side….and the sound travels through the planks. Well, gee…that doesn’t explain the bouncing ball noise or the metal sounds.

The next night (just as I knew in the back of my mind), the noises started again, same spot, around the same time. I once again woke my husband up, and he once again dismissed it. But this time, the noises became louder, and it even sounded like someone threw something big and hard against the wall….all the way on the other side of the room, by the window. This really unnerved me, and made me very uncomfortable. What if it throws something at me, or tries to hurt me. I decided to do something about it, as I couldn’t get to sleep. I remember reading in the Bible, that we can tell evil or spirits to go away, and it has to comply. But, you have to say specifically, “In the name of Jesus Christ, be gone”

So I sat up in the bed and said that in a very loud and commanding way. I also told it to “go away”.

It worked! No noises for long enough for me to go back to sleep. Of course my husband thought I was crazy and just annoying him, by waking him up again.

By the end of the day, for our final night, I knew it would happen again, but this time I was prepared, and went to sleep with my mp3 player on. I was not going to have that pesky ghost or whatever keep me up. Sure enough, like clockwork….it did happen again. It managed to get even louder, and more obnoxious….like it knew it would have to to wake me up. And once again, sounded like someone was throwing things against the wall (every once in awhile). I turned up my mp3 player and went back to sleep.

Now don’t get me wrong, I wanted to request a different room after the first and even second encounter, but my husband didn’t want to bother the hotel staff, and mostly he didn’t want them to think we were crazy (that’s the real reason). Because of my “open-mindedness”, I think I am tolerant of certain things that I cannot explain. If it weren’t for that, I’m sure I would have ran out of there screaming.

We have had other encounters with ghosts, so I just don’t understand why he is in denial. I will save those for another post.

Well, anyway, we managed to enjoy our stay again in New Orleans…..it has such a tormented history….no wonder it has so many ghosts. I won’t let them keep me away though, as there is always something new to discover there in that wonderful old city.

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"Mad Anne"

So, I’m a book lover, and have my own “library” room which is packed with many books on a variety of subjects. It has come in handy on many occasions when my son has come home and said to me…. “oh mom…I need to do a report on such and such…I have to use some book references….my teacher says you can’t use only the Internet for sources”.

Many of my books I acquired because the local High school was “discarding” what they considered to be old and out- of- date books.  I barely looked at most of them, I just grabbed whatever sounded interesting, and when I got home, they were quickly transferred to my bookshelves.

Anyway, I was looking over my collection, when I noticed one with the title, “American Nicknames”, while paging through it, I found that it provides nicknames referring to people, places, buildings, objects of life, religious and political organizations…..this book is a treasure trove of information!

At first glance, it seems boring, as everything is alphabetized just like a dictionary. I didn’t make it very far when I noticed the name, “Anne Hennis Trotter Bailey”, and what caught my attention was her nickname, “Mad Anne”. Well, I have to read about this person who gets this odd nickname!

So, here is an excerpt about “Mad Anne”:

Mrs. Anne Hennis Trotter Bailey was often designated Mad Anne by the settlers of Gallipolis, Ohio, and by the frontiersmen on the adjacent Virginia border because her unconventionality and her courage at times seemed to border on madness.

After Mrs. Trotter’s husband, Richard Trotter, had been killed in 1774 during an Indian raid, Mrs. Trotter dressed in men’s clothes, and joined a band of soldiers on the Kanawha River at the present site of Charleston, West Virginia, hoping to avenge the death of her husband.

When the Revolutionary War broke out, she inspired a great number of men to join the Continental Army. She became an expert in the use of firearms, and was invaluable as a messenger between the forts and in securing ammunition and supplies for these garrisons.

Because she was so unconventional in her dress and in engaging in the activities of war, she was considered to be abnormal or insane and was called Mad Anne.

She was born in Liverpool, England, around 1742, and died at Gallipolis (now Ohio), on November 22, 1825.

I bet she was a hoot in her day and time, no wonder they thought she was crazy….women wearing pants!

Sketches from “Anne Bailey, Frontier Scout” by Mary R. Furber, Morgan Reynolds Publishing, Inc., Greensboro, NC.

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