Saturday, April 19, 2014
     

If I'm typing and I accidentally hit the delete key, I don't have to worry. All I have to do to get my work back is to hit the undo button.

Then presto, the work that disappeared will be back again. Nothing is lost.

Wouldn't it be nice if life were like that?

Wouldn't it save so many tears and so much regret if we could sweep away any part of living we didn't like by hitting the "undo" button? Then we could do it again the way we want.

By BOB URBAN rurban@tnonline.com Memorial Day. It's my favorite holiday weekend of the year. Everybody feels patriotic. The weather has finally warmed up. School's almost out and summer has unofficially begun. Enjoy it everyone. It only comes around...
Here's some mind twisters to help you keep aging gray cells active on a spring Saturday. Don't peek at the answers below until you're finished taking the quiz. 1. Johnny's mother had three children. The first child was named April. The second child...
By BRUCE FRASSINELLI tneditor@tnonline.com (Editor's Note: Bob Urban, whose column normally runs in this space, is out looking for a Mother's Day gift for his wife, Mary. Substituting today is Bruce Frassinelli, a Summt Hill native and life-long...
By JIM ZBICK jzbick@tnonline.com Although there was no 24/7 news coverage and no social media outlets for people to offer their personal commentary, the 1912 presidential election offered some cutting edge technology for its day. The race featured a...
By jim zbick jzbick@tnonline.com In depressed times, sports can be a good tonic for lifting the spirits of a community. A good example is in Detroit where the baseball Tigers have been able to lift the morale of a city devastated by the collapse of...
By jim zbick jzbick@tnonline.com Tourism is the second leading industry in Pennsylvania, which is the fourth most visited state in the nation. Groups and officials have long used the natural beauty of our surroundings to promote the area. In an...
Every week before Easter, we buy a dozen small eggs. Then, on Good Friday, we spend time boiling them in the morning and coloring them in the afternoon. This tradition has been in our family for many years. Our mom believed that between noon and 3 p...
Now that our grandson Colton, 5, is in preschool four days a week, my daughter Jennifer and I can spend some quality time together. It has been many years since we could do that. In the years previous to this, we could go shopping and out to lunch,...
Being a retired senior citizen has its advantages. We no longer have to spend most of our mornings getting ready for work. Now we can have a leisurely breakfast, take time to read the entire morning paper, get dressed in jeans and a T-shirt, and...
On a recent trip, my son, Paul, and I had just finished one of several of our long philosophical discussions when he turned to me and said, ``You know, Dad, for an old guy, you're pretty cool." I was startled, because I stopped worrying about...
When the European Parliament (EP) flouted the European Commission's (EC) proposed Tobacco Products Directive (TPD) by vetoing medicine regulation for electronic cigarettes (e-cigs) last October, American public health experts (myself included)...
Age has its prerogatives. One of the most profitable is saving money. Since turning 55, I have saved more than $27,000 taking advantage of senior citizen discounts and special pricing for seniors. That's an average of about $1,400 a year. How did I...
Slick Sammy stopped by the office and said to me, "David, did you know that this week is the only week in 2014 that the days are ordered forward as well as reverse?" I thought about it and realized Sammy was right. The day was 4/14/14, and when...
Hollywood has lost another legend with the death of the perennial Mickey Rooney. Rooney, born Joseph Yule Jr., began his 93-year career almost literally from birth. He was born into vaudeville during the heyday of live entertainment to parents...
For the longest time, I was a cellphone holdout, especially in the early days. I just did not see the point of carrying around a phone. After all, when we are in a car driving, why in the world would we want to be distracted by phone calls. And yet...
By LINDA KOEHLER lkoehler@tnonline.com Easter is tomorrow. May you all rejoice in the resurrection of our Lord, Jesus Christ. Most of you know of the Easter Bunny, a popular character that is a part of the secular celebration of the holiday. But did...
By LINDA KOEHLER lkoehler@tnonline.com Once in a while I listen to CAT Country, 96.1 FM, on the way to work. This morning Becca challenged us with a brain teaser: "What building has the most stories?" My mushy morning brain immediately pulled out...
A couple of weeks ago, Harry came home happier than a fishworm who escaped the tin can. "Look what I got!" he called out in glee. I had to contain myself from leaping for joy at the sight of him holding a piece of paper. But hey, I'm game. I took...
One of the worst epidemics facing schools today is bullying. Of course, it's nothing new. Most children say they've experienced bullying at some point while inside or around school, maybe before class, or after class or at recess or lunch, or in the...
Brisk walking is my favorite form of exercise. It probably doesn't use all of the required muscle groups to constitute a total workout. But walking and antique highwheel riding are the only modes of exercise I enjoy. The best form of exercise, I...
The calendar says spring is here. It's time to leave behind the winter of my discontent. And what a long one it's been. This is the first time I've seen winter span five months. It began in November with bitter cold air and lasted until now. Homes...
If I'm typing and I accidentally hit the delete key, I don't have to worry. All I have to do to get my work back is to hit the undo button. Then presto, the work that disappeared will be back again. Nothing is lost. Wouldn't it be nice if life were...
I'm what is called an avid reader. In addition to reading fiction for enjoyment, I like to read to gain information, especially health-related articles and those that give me financial information. For at least a decade, I've subscribed to the...
Last week a friend of mine asked me to do some publicity for a show the historical society is putting on. All I had to do was interview the couple doing the show. I was told the couple would be presenting a musical production. Interviewing them...
Back when I was growing up many moons ago, virtually every town had a photo store or photo studio. You would go there for portraits. Businesses would call them for LCB (Liquor Control Board) photos. Lawyers would use their services to take photos of...
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By DAVID WARGO tneditor@tnoline.com Did you know there was an important anniversary on March 4? It was an important anniversary, especially for the 300 million Americans in this country, because without the anniversary of the ratification of the...

Claire:

Once upon a time, watching television was for Philistines. The uncultured masses would tune in to watch the latest sitcom every night, blissfully ignorant, while the intellectuals would sit in their ivory towers reading books, or at the very least saving their money for a subscription to a network like HBO or Showtime, where all the "artsy" television supposedly dwelled.

That's how the joke goes, anyway. These days, though, a few shows have me questioning the old adage that television is just for dummies and couch potatoes.

Jim:

Our most faithful fan does not live in Lehighton or Jim Thorpe or Tamaqua, or anywhere in the hard coal region.

No, he lives on the other side of the world. Dan Bloom is a freelance writer and ex-patriot, who resides in Taiwan where, he says, he is "buffeted around by Pacific typhoons every summer." Maybe that's why he worries a lot about climate change.

Jim:

There's an old saying: "They treat me like a mushroom. They keep me in the dark and feed me B.S." I know I'm a mushroom and hope that, at least, I may be a Portobello.

First off, there's the cosmic mystery. Where did the universe come from? If it's expanding, what is it expanding into? These questions give me butterflies in my stomach. I try hard never to think about them. I have butterflies right now. Let's change the subject.

Claire:

Writing down one's dirty secrets and posting them all over the web is de rigueur these days. It's hardly edgy or shocking to read the intimate details of a person's sex life, mental issues, or weight problems.

Heck, not too long ago a woman live-tweeted her miscarriage yup, that means she was writing about it on the Internet literally while it was happening.

JIM:

So Bradley Manning wants to be called Chelsea. I wonder how Chelsea Clinton feels about that.

Fort Leavenworth prison officials say he'll get no hormones and no surgery. Manning's lawyer calls this cruel and unusual punishment and vows to sue.

Advocates of transgender convicts claim (per recent news reports), "Self-castration, suicide and waves of desperation are byproducts of the denial of sex hormones to inmates yearning to switch genders." Sounds pretty grim, doesn't it?

Feeling dog-tired one recent Sunday evening, I shut down my computer and was just about to change into my jammies and crawl into bed when the phone began to ring.

Typically when the phone rings at that time of night, it isn't for a good reason.

My heart started to beat rapidly and I hesitated before picking up the receiver.

I checked the caller ID and answered it when I realized it was a dear friend of mine.

Immediately I could tell that she was upset and that something was very, very wrong.

She proceeded to tell me that her child had overdosed - again.

About a week or so after writing the column on my diabetes, I received an email from our lifestyle editor that there was a piece of mail for me that was delivered to the Times News.

I was a little nervous at first, automatically going the negative route and thinking it was some sort of hate mail stemming from another previous story, but being the type of person who loves surprises, I couldn't wait to see what was waiting for me.

When I retrieved the item from Karen, I immediately opened it to find a handwritten card along with some other smaller, informational items.

I read a story the other day that I felt was worth sharing.

A gentleman suffering from type 2 diabetes recently went to a Brooklyn movie theater to view "Divergent."

Unable to eat any of the high fat and high calorie snacks offered by the theater, the man chose to bring in a small container of strawberries to munch on while he enjoyed the film.

He paid a whopping $12 for his ticket and was then told that he had to throw away his strawberries.

When life gives you pasta ...

Some days, things get to be pretty busy at the office.

I find myself getting a little bit frustrated when my already long "to do" list is taken over by nonstop phone calls, walk-ins and an unrelenting barrage of e-mails.

Wednesday was one of those days and it was so busy that I never got to take my lunch break, which I was going to utilize to pick up my prescription from Wal-Mart.

Even with working through lunch, I ended up having to stay later than usual to finish up some additional tasks before calling it a day.

My granddaughter was diagnosed around 6 months of age as having optic nerve hypoplasia.

While the condition can come with many symptoms and problems, the most obvious was the inability for her to control the movement of her one eye.

To look at her, it always appeared that her right eye was looking to her far right.

The condition was even more prominent when she became tired almost concealing her iris and pupil in its entirety.