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Columns

Saturday, February 4, 2012

We've all seen the "brown marmorated stink bug" in our homes and gardens in the last few years.

According to the Penn State website, this insect was not previously seen on our continent. It was apparently accidentally introduced into eastern Pennsylvania.

The stink bug was first collected in September of 1998 in Allentown, but probably arrived several years earlier. It is probable that they are in all counties and has found its way throughout most of the United States.

Saturday, February 4, 2012

My grandfather told me that any politician could be bought. He would cite examples of well-known politicians who were manipulated by the rich and famous. Once he pointed these politicians out, I would follow their actions over time to see if my grandfather had it right or if he was wrong. In most cases, he was correct. In fact, as a young man I was often able to predict how a particular politician would vote on a certain issue based on who was pulling his strings. In this day and age, it is unlikely that politicians are actually being bought. Instead, they are susceptible to lobbyists.

Saturday, February 4, 2012

My husband and I enjoy most of the same activities.

We both relish kayaking, biking, dancing, nature walks and photography. That's fortunate because neither of us has to sit home alone while the other is out having fun. Togetherness can be a blessed thing and not a day goes by that I don't thank God for this gift.

But one thing my husband and I find hard to do together is to go to the movies. Our tastes run in totally opposite directions. He likes the shoot-em-up, mow-them-down, high speed, high action movies and I like the freely good movies.

Monday, January 30, 2012

I was sitting at home late last week watching some television when a friend called me excitedly to ask if I heard about the strange sounds in the sky. I had to admit the only strange sounds I heard up to that point was the cat racing through a darkened house late at night. He said, "No. On YouTube. Look up 'strange sounds in sky 2012'."

Monday, January 30, 2012

On March 24, 1898, Robert Allison a 70-year-old Schuylkill County industrialist, became the answer to a huge part of early automobile trivia. That day, he purchased the first commercially manufactured automobile at the Winton Motor Carriage Company in Cleveland.

Allison was born in Middleton, Teesdale, Durham County, England, on Dec. 25, 1827. When the Scottish immigrant first came to Port Carbon, the place had very few inhabitants.

Monday, January 30, 2012

JIM:

"Alma Mater" is Latin for "nourishing mother." The term is usually applied to some school or college from which we graduated. In my case, it's Franklin & Marshall College in Lancaster. When I attended in the late 1960s, F&M was a men's college. We students joked that the letters stood for "Frustration & Masturbation." The fall semester after I graduated was the first time F&M admitted female students. We frat boys joked that, once we were gone, it was safe enough to let them on the campus.

Monday, January 30, 2012

Earlier this week, the President painted a rosy picture in his State Of The Union address. I believe that he does not recognize the reality of our current situation. Listening to his speech, I would think that America is well on the road to recovery with a vibrant economy. But when I look at the facts, our nation is still in recession. There is a ray of economic sunshine, but we have to ensure that the President and the congress do not stamp out the light before it grows into a full economic recovery.

Saturday, January 28, 2012

Birthdays come every year,

I try not to shed too many a tear.

Things are getting harder as the years go by,

Even so, I'm still glad to be alive.

Mornings take me forever to get dressed,

Blue or black slacksdeciding makes me stressed.

This blouse fit me two weeks ago,

It was all that birthday cake, don't you know.

Pluck pluck here and pluck pluck there,

I've got so much facial hair.

Have to find the brightest light,

Hard to see the little suckers with my "old lady" sight.

Ready for breakfast, oh so bland,

Saturday, January 28, 2012

Move over, bath salts.

The dangerous narcotic that had been all the rage has since been replaced by the newest designer drug to hit the market.

That would be in the form of jewelry cleaner.

Yes, you heard that right. Jewelry cleaner.

Also known as 'Cosmic Blast', the potentially deadly cocaine-like powder is hidden in packages called "jewelry cleaner".

If swallowed or breathed in, the drug contains poisonous ingredients such as ammonia, detergent, and soap, according to the web site, www.drugs.com.

Saturday, January 28, 2012

By BOB URBAN

rurban@tnonline.com

Let us not become weary in doing good, for at the proper time we will reap a harvest if we do not give up. Gal. 6:9, (NIV)

Here are some thoughts sent on by a loyal reader.

Living on Earth is expensive,

but it does include a free trip

around the sun every year.

How long a minute is

depends on what side of the

bathroom door you're on.

Birthdays are good for you;

the more you have,

the longer you live.

Happiness comes through doors you

didn't even know you left open.