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Wallace and Gromit in The Curse of the
I don't know, maybe
we should bring back that burgling
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"Pat was AMAZED at how organized we were and how wonderful
the jpegs of our products looked. She says that no other manufacturer
has been so helpful and ready to share like that - and so organized
to get the info she requested to her so quickly. She wanted that
passed on to whoever was responsible - she's VERY excited about
working with us!" -- Carol's
notes in our system on a sales call
||Congratulations to Eagle Scouts!
did a bunch of stuff this weekend, including seeing Alison's
mom perform on-stage (she had a major role in an outstanding
production of "To Kill a Mockingbird") and dining with
a dozen Looneys in honor of the Looney Family Matriarch at a
fancy Inn called King's Contrivance (the same place where the
reception dinner was held after Kristin
got married). The latter was particularly fun because Rash
flew in from California for the occasion!
Another event I managed to squeeze into last weekend's schedule
was attending James Durfor's Eagle Scout Court of Honor Ceremony.
Alert readers will remember that James was the lad who helped
me inventory our massive library of books last
summer, so it was fun for me to see him receive this important
Moreover, the occasion gave me a deadline for getting something
done that I've been needing to do since early February.
You see, a few months ago I started getting letters, from
Scout Leaders with titles like "Troop Eagle Coordinator,"
informing me of their latest Eagles and asking me to send along
a letter of congratulations. They just started showing up, out
of the blue. I've gotten 5 so far, arriving from locations such
as Texas, Georgia, and New Jersey, and I'm sure this marks the
beginning of a trend.
It's quite a common thing, you see, writing to VIPs and asking
them to send a letter of congratulations to a new Eagle Scout.
Here in my files I have a couple of letters I myself was presented
with in 1981, when I became an Eagle Scout. Both are on official
letterhead from the United States Congress, one being from our
district's Representative and the other from our Senator.
Hey! Wow. Those same two guys are the same ones we have in
those offices now, 25 years later! Paul Sarbanes is still our
Senator, and it was at Congressmen Hoyer's office that we rallied
in support of Medical
Marijuana on June
10, 2004, after which he
changed his stance and supported the Hinchey-Rohrbacher amendment!
But I digress.
As soon as I started receiving these letters I knew I needed
to put together some sort of standardized reply, which I could
generate whenever I get a request like this, much as I'm sure
my Congressmen's' staffers used, oh so long ago, when these letters
were sent out to me.
Unfortunately, I had no appropriate letterhead available,
and since several of the letters I'd received had actually been
addressed to my Imperial
Alter-Ego, I needed to develop something rather special by
way of response.
it took a few months to find the time & inspiration necessary
to come up with a good letterhead design for this occasion. But
here's what I finally came up with (click for enlargement).
I got the first of these letters written just in time to present
it to James at the reception following his ceremony. As for the
other 5, who'll be getting their letters late, I'm sorry for
the delay. But from now on I will Be Prepared, and should be
able to respond to a request like this with a nice letter that
will hopefully arrive in time for it to be presented and read
aloud, with the other such letters that come in, at their own
official ceremonies. (Plus this letterhead may be useful to me
for other correspondences...)
I didn't take any photos
this weekend, so the picture at the top this week is of me at
my own Court of Honor ceremony, on November 7th, 1981. (I've
always been driven by deadlines, and often achieve them only
at the last minute. For example, when I finished up my requirements
for Eagle, I cut things so close to the deadline that my Court
of Honor was actually held 2 days after my 18th birthday.)
Congratulations once again to James Durfor, and to Robert
Smith, Ross Anderson, Steven Casazza, Joseph Catanzano, and Daniel
Fallon, and to any and all other Eagle Scouts out there. Well
for reading and stuff!
||Yay for the Hippies! BJ & Tyler, nicknamed the Hippies,
narrowly beat the Frat Boys to become the winners of a million
bucks on this season's finale of the Amazing Race! It was a particularly
thrilling race for Hippie-watchers, because not once but twice
they came in last but weren't eliminated from the race because
it was a non-elimination round. Well done Hippies! Congrats!
(And if you feel like investing some of your winnings in a Hippie
Game Company, give us a call.)
||"If cannabis were unknown, and bioprospectors were suddenly
to find it in some remote mountain crevice, its discovery would
no doubt be hailed as a medical breakthrough. Scientists would
praise its potential for treating everything from pain to cancer,
and marvel at its rich pharmacopoeia-many of whose chemicals
mimic vital molecules in the human body. In reality, cannabis
has been with humanity for thousands of years and is considered
by many governments (notably America's) to be a dangerous drug
without utility. Any suggestion that the plant might be medically
useful is politically controversial, whatever the science says.
It is in this context that, on April 20th, America's Food and
Drug Administration (FDA) issued a statement saying that smoked
marijuana has no accepted medical use in treatment in the United
States. The statement is curious in a number of ways." -- The Economist, "Reefer
Madness: Marijuana is medically useful, whether politicians
like it or not"
||"A collapsing economy is especially hard on those who
are accustomed to prompt, courteous service. In the Soviet Union,
most official service was rude and slow, and involved standing
in long lines. Many of the products that were in short supply
could not be obtained even in this manner, and required something
called blat: special, unofficial access or favor. The
exchange of personal favors was far more important to the actual
functioning of the economy than the exchange of money. To Russians,
blat is almost a sacred thing: a vital part of culture that holds
society together. It is also the only part of the economy that
is collapse-proof, and, as such, a valuable cultural adaptation." -- Dmitry Orlov, seen quoted in a Speech by Michael
C. Ruppert called "The
Paradigm Is The Enemy: The State of the Peak Oil Movement
at the Cusp of Collapse"