POTPOURRI #90  Friday, October 19

Featured Quote:  “I’m sorry.  I was so busy listening to myself talk that I forgot what I was saying.”

BIG Q #2: What is JOY?  The desiring or the achievement of the desire?


336.  What are the only two non-technical words in English ending in -yze?

337.  What is the fourth leading cause of death in America?

338.  In written and spoken English, the verb ‘migrate’ is used more often in which direction?

339.  How thick is the copper plate on the Statue of Liberty?

340.  Which is correct?  Ukulele or ukelele?

Learning is finding out what you already know.

Doing is demonstrating that you know it.

Teaching is reminding others that they know it just as well as you.

You are all learners, doers, teachers.    --Richard Bach

From Mike W.:  “An honest man can feel no pleasure in the exercise of power over his fellow citizens.”   --Thomas Jefferson, letter to John Melish, 1/13, 1813

80% of antibiotics use in the US goes into animal feed.

Massachusetts has the highest lottery spending per resident:  $699, and the highest portion of lottery sales that go to prizes:  72%.

Lori K. invites you to help tear down a virtual Guantánamo:   http://tearitdown.org

“Your brain is a thrill seeker.  New Experiences stimulate the area that produces dopamine, a chemical involved in learning and memory.  Studies show that doing new things builds brain mass and increases mental agility.”  --Nancy Kalish in Prevention

8 out of 10 of the richest people are not Americans.

Jim S. defines OLD:  You tell your friend that you are having an affair, and your friend asks you “Are you having it catered?”

Razors pain you

Rivers are damp;

Acids stain you;

And drugs cause cramp.

Guns aren’t lawful;

Nooses give;

Gas smells awful;

You might as well live.       --Dorothy Parker

The EPA’s standards for public water systems are more stringent than the FDA’s for bottled water.

The Bible was a consolation to a fellow alone in the old cell.  The lovely thin paper with a bit of mattress stuffing in it, if you could get a match, was as good a smoke as I ever tasted.”  --Brendan Behan

Alan D. is having one of those days:  http://people.ambrosiasw.com/~andrew/funny/piggy.swf

Jim S. reports:  When the graveside service for her ended, there was a tremendous burst of thunder accompanied by a distant lightning bolt and more rumbling thunder, and more lightning.  The little old man looked at the pastor and calmly said,  "Well, she's there."

Last year Big Pharma spent $5.3 Billion on drug ads.

Clever squirrel from Fred B.:  http://www.boreme.com/boreme/funny-2007/squirrel-impossible-mission-p1.php?darch

The forms a while and awhile are not the same, and the choice depends on how you use them. The simple explanation: awhile is an adverb meaning 'for a short time': "We drove awhile, and then stopped for a rest."  A while is a noun phrase: "A while ago, I was living in Turkey." The usage that's most often criticized is the use of awhile where the noun phrase a while is thought to be correct: "I'll stay for awhile." The simplest advice is to recognize that the adverb awhile means 'for a short time', and then attempt to plug in the phrase "for a short time" in place of the questionable form. If that does not work, use a while: "We'll be there in for a short time"? No, so it has to be "We'll be there in a while." "For a short time ago?" No, so it has to be "A while ago."

Mary M. helps us understand “recess”:  http://www.funnyordie.com/videos/26b0d09397

1/3 of Americans believe in astrology.  --Lisa Miller

In a 5-4 vote, the Supreme Court has reversed the Nobel Committee’s decision and awarded the Peace Prize to ... GWB.”   --Mike Keefe

The Roger Corman 1960 cult film, Little Shop of Horrors, was filmed in 5 days on skid row of L.A.  Real bums were paid to walk though the scenes and paid 10¢ each time.

34% expect today’s children to be better off than people are now, down from 55% when the Q was asked in 1999.  Men who are in the 30s earn less than their fathers’ generation did at the same age.  Adjusted for inflation, the median income for men in thheir 30s in 1974 was $40,210; in 2004 it dropped to $35,010.

1,500 Americans die each day from cancer.

From Mother Teresa via Philip S.:

Life is an opportunity, benefit from it.

Life is beauty, admire it.

Life is bliss, taste it.

Life is a dream, realize it.

Life is a challenge, meet it.

Life is a duty, complete it.

Life is a game, play it.

Life is a promise, fulfill it.

Life is sorrow, overcome it.

Life is a song, sing it.

Life is a struggle, accept it.

Life is a tragedy, confront it.

Life is an adventure, dare it.

Life is luck, make it.

Life is too precious, do not destroy it.

Life is life, fight for it.

Someone who is saturnine [adj. SAT-ur-nyn] might be sad, gloomy, melancholy, sullen, morose, sour, surly, sardonic, and slow to shift moods. Such a personality is like that of someone born when the planet Saturn was rising, according to the ancient Romans. 

KWIKWIZ answers:

336.  analyze and paralyze

337.  doctor-prescribed drugs:  about 100,000/year die following their doctor’s advice.

338.  Almost twice as often with south as with north.

339.  1/8 of an inch thick

340.  ukulele

CHALLENGE #89 was:  Which company issued the first discount coupon?  Answer:  Coca Cola in 1894 [Jerry got it].  Last year companies issued about 1000/person.

CHALLENGE #90:  The day after he graduated from college on the dean’s list, he took a job peddling jewelry on the streets of Manhattan, trying to evade the police.  Next he sold light bulbs over the phone, and then waited tables at a Brew and Burger.  His philosophy was to take jobs that were so bad that he’d be propelled to succeed as a comedian--which he did.  Who?


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POTPOURRI #91  Friday October 26

Featured Quote:  “Speech, after all, is in some measure an expression of character, and flexibility in its use is a good way to tell your friends from the robots.”  --Jacques Barzun

BIG Q #3: Why did Capitalism develop in the Protestant German north, but not in the Catholic south?


341.  What was the first record to sell one million copies?

342.  Which is correct?  embarasing, embarrasing, embarrassing or embarassing?

343.  Who is the most widely translated author?

344.  Who said that if no WMDs were found in Iraq: “I will apologize to the nation and I will not trust the Bush administration again.”

345.  Who put together drums from around the world to form the ‘drum set’ used today?

“Core players” make up 10-14% of players of state lotteries, but account for 80% of sales.  --Independent Lottery Research

Mitt Romney is spending money at an average daily rate of $196,382.  --Newsweek

“There are two things that are important in politics.  The first is money, and I can’t remember what the second one is.”  --Mark Hanna, the Gilded Age political boss.

Getting married to get sex is like buying a 747 to get free peanuts.

The word romance does not date back to the Roman Empire, but to the Middle Ages. The earliest sense, from the 14th century, is 'French,' that is 'the vernacular language of France,' as contrasted with Latin.  It does ultimately stem from a Latin word meaning 'in the Roman manner.' In this exact sense the word is now obsolete, but survives in "the Romance languages," which refers to vernacular languages derived from the spoken Latin of the Roman Empire, including French, Spanish, Italian, Portuguese, Romanian, Catalan, and others.  Also dating from the 14th century is 'a medieval verse narrative treating of heroic, fantastic, or supernatural events,' and was so called because such narratives were originally written in a vernacular language: Latin was for serious stuff, but French was fine for stories of knights.  By the 17th century, we developed the sense 'a novel or other prose narrative depicting heroic or marvelous deeds, pageantry, exploits, etc., usually in a historical or imaginary setting.' This was apparently a borrowing from French roman in this sense rather than an English innovation. (In Modern French, roman is the standard word for 'a novel.' This can be seen in some English borrowings, such as roman à clef (last word pronounced as "clay") 'a novel that represents real events or characters under the guise of fiction.'

“The trouble with SCHIP from Bush’s point of view is that it works too well.  In providing necessary health care for kids, it would lead people to say, ‘Why not more?’ You can see where that line goes.  So he’s chosen to fight it out over 12-year-old kids.”  --Paul Krugman

Driving demo from Alan D.:  http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=kv5d2mXy7dY

Two proposed laws to change the nature of war: 1.  A universal draft activated during war.  2.  War-related financial costs be fully paid by temporary increases in personal taxes of everyone.   --Matthew Barritt

Re Rwanda:  the categories of Tutsi and Hutu were invented and institutionalized by Belgian colonialists.

America has to date “spent twice as much in inflation-adjusted dollars to rebuild Iraq as it did to rebuild Japan--an industrialized country three times Iraq’s size, two of whose cities had been incinerated by atomic bombs.” [And still Iraq lacks reliable electric power.]  --Donald Bartlett & James Steele in Vanity Fair

From Philip S.:  Three things in life that, once gone, never come back: 1. Time,  2. Words,  3. Opportunity

Words from a people’s names:

algorithm al-Khowarizmi

bobby Robert Peel

cardigan James Thomas Brudenell, 7th earl of Cardigan (1797-1868)

derby Edward Stanley, 12th earl of Derby

frisbee William Russell Frisbie, pie shop owner in Bridgeport CT

guppy R. J. L. Guppy

macadamia nut John Macadam (Australian)

melba toast and peach melba Dame Nellie Melba (1861-1931)

The world's termites outweigh the world's humans 10 to 1.  

The notorious Middle Passage across the Atlantic was used to send more than 12 million Africans to America over three centuries.

“He has never been known to use a word that might send the reader to the dictionary.”    William Faulner about Ernest Hemingway


“Poor Faulkner. Does he really think big emotions come from big words?” Hemingway about Faulkner

In 10 minutes, a hurricane releases more energy than all the world's nuclear weapons combined.

“Time’s fun when you’re having flies.”  --Kermit the Frog

Monogamy is relatively rare cross-culturally.  Most cultures [82%] allow multiple wives; few multiple husbands [only 5].  --Edward Fischer

The Main Library at Indiana University sinks more than an inch every year because, when it was built, engineers failed to take into account the weight of all the books that would occupy the building.

First the doctor told me the good news:  I was going to have a disease named after me.

Krishna K. believes last week’s attribution to Mother Teresa should be made to Sai Baba.  [Mis-attribution is too common on the internet.]

KWIKWIZ answers:

341.  Vernon Dalhart’s hillbilly ditty “The Prisoner’s Song.”  It was a Victor recording, not an Edison.

342.  embarrassing

343.  Sidney Sheldon...51 languages

344.  Bill O’Reilly in 2004

345.  Max Roach

CHALLENGE #90 was:  The day after he graduated from college on the dean’s list, he took a job peddling jewelry on the streets of Manhattan, trying to evade the police.  Next he sold light bulbs over the phone, and then waited tables at a Brew and Burger.  His philosophy was to take jobs that were so bad that he’d be propelled to succeed as a comedian--which he did.  Who?  Answer: Jerry Seinfeld  [Jerry, Mary M., Jim S. and Matt A. got it]

CHALLENGE #91:  He asked to be buried in a specific place, so his heart was cut out before cremation and buried there;  his ashes went elsewhere.  He copied sections of his letters and journals and published them as a 2-volume biography in his wife’s name.  Who?


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POTPOURRI #92   Thursday November 1

Featured Quote:  “It is not sufficient to be a mother:  An oyster can be a mother.”  --Charlotte Perkins Gilman

BIG Q #4: Will Bush leave office without bombing Iran or starting WWIII?


346.  Where in the world do the most species live?

347.  Which country sent the most immigrants through Ellis Island?

348.  Which is correct: coolly or cooly?

349.  Which country was the first to use the Christian cross on its coins?

350.  These quotes all originated in print in a two-year period.  Which years? “Shit happens.”  “Life’s a bitch, and then you die.”  “Been there, done that.”  “Get a life.”

Karl Friedrich Benz and Gottlieb Daimler each developed verhicles with internal combustion engines in the 1880s.  They never met, but their companies merged in 1926 to sell Mercedes cars, named after the daughter of a man who financed Daimler’s early production.

Beard hair is as hard as a similar thickness of copper.

Mondegreen is a word or phrase resulting from a misinterpretation of a word or phrase that has been heard. It was coined by Silvia Wright in Harper's in 1954. The poem in question was an old Scottish ballad called "The Bonnie Earl of Murray," which contains the couplet, "They hae slain the Earl o' Murray/And laid him on the green." Ms Wright heard this as a child as "They hae slain the Earl o' Murray/And Lady Mondegreen," and went through life in sorrow for poor Lady Mondegreen until she encountered the ballad in written form. A classic example is "Gladly the cross-eyed bear," for the hymn "Gladly the cross I'd bear." Gavin Edwards's book title Scuse Me While I Kiss This Guy, is a mondegreen from Jimi Hendrix's "Purple Haze": "Scuse me while I kiss the sky." Others: "The girl with colitis goes by," from "the girl with kaleidoscope eyes," in the Beatles' "Lucy in the Sky with Diamonds." As a kid playing tag on Annsbury St., I remember touching the lampost that was ‘base’ and yelling “1,2,3 enclair.”  It was only about 10 years ago that I realized it should have been “1,2,3, in clear.”  So I really was never ‘safe,’ and am still IT.  Watch out!

Gary H sent a video that demonstrates mondegreens cross-culturally:  http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ZA1NoOOoaNw

Va-Jay-Jay--the new pop slang for vulva [vagina+labia+clitoris].  There are 1,200 terms for just the vagina in English.  --Steven Pinker

“Ecological devastation has left extinct 99.9% of all species that have ever lived on Earth.”  --Neil deGrasse Tyson

Attn Republican presidential candidates: In America’s darkest hour FDR urged the nation not to succumb to “nameless, unreasoning, unjustified terror.”

5% of U.S. households have at least $1 million to invest. [40,000 have over $25 million.]

Lisa F. challenges you to the Air Force Test:  http://tinyurl.com/56t9u 

BIG SUGAR ‘farm-support’ programs have us pay double the world price for sugar and bars some of the poorest countries in the world from selling to us.  New legislation will make it worse .  [BTW, Big Sugar contributes >$3 million each political cycle.]

The Mississippi legislature is considering a bill to make an uncovered erection illegal--in an attempt to control lap dancing.

Mike W. sent this:  ”It has always been a mystery to me how men can feel themselves honored by the humiliation of their fellow beings.”  --Mohandas Gandhi

The U.S. government has prosecuted Japanese officers [after WWII] and Texas prison officials for waterboarding. --Fritz Schwarz

Barbara H. tells us where the speed traps are: 


Christianity Today, the evangelical journal, has posed the question of whether evangelicals should “repent” for their swift support of invading Iraq. 

“Currently, total global oil use is 86 million barrels/day.”  --Elizabeth Kolbert

As many as 600 Blackwater mercenaries worked on the Gulf Coast after Katrina--at $950/day.  They included Israeli commandos.  [And some folks complained about giving displaced residents $2,000 debit cards.]

The Beatles are seven times more popular as Jesus, according to Google.

“Iran had nothing to do with 9/11--in fact, the Iranian regime was quite helpful to the U.S. when it went after Al Qaeda and its Taliban allies in Afghanistan.”  --Paul Krugman

Alan D. challenges you to qualify as a citizen:  http://games.toast.net/independence/

The WWII radio response ‘wilco’ stands for ‘will comply.’

40% of societies are patrilineal;  15% matrilineal.  --Edward F. Fischer

70% of national intelligence work is privatized.  --Jeremy Skayhill


1. Innovative

2. Preliminary

3. Proliferation

4. Cinnamon


1. Specificity

2. Anti-constitutionalistically

3. Passive-aggressive disorder

4. Transubstantiate


1. Thanks, but I don't want to have sex.

2. Nope, no more booze for me!

3. Sorry, but you're not really my type.

4. Taco Bell? No thanks, I'm not hungry.

5. Oh, I couldn't! No one wants to hear me sing karaoke.

6. I'm not interested in fighting you.

7. Thank you, but I won't make any attempt to dance, I have no coordination. I'd hate to look like a fool!

8. Where is the nearest bathroom? I refuse to pee in this parking lot or on the side of the road.

9. I must be going home now, as I have to work in the morning.

KWIKWIZ answers:

346.  The canopy of the rain forest

347.  Italy:  2,502,310;  second was Russia:  1,893,542

348.  coolly

349.  Ethiopia, whose first king,by the way, was the son of King Solomon.

350.  1982-3 “S H” in “UNC-CH Slang.”  “Life’s...” and “Get a life.” in the Washington Post.  “Been there...” in the Union Recorder, U. of Sydney

CHALLENGE #91 was:  He asked to be buried in a specific place, so his heart was cut out before cremation and buried there;  his ashes went elsewhere.  He copied sections of his letters and journals and published them as a 2-volume biography in his wife’s name.  Who?  Answer: Thomas Hardy, who wrote “Far From the Madding [sic] Crowd,”  “Tess of the D’Urbervilles,” and “Jude the Obscure.”  Against his wishes, his literary executor sent his ashes to Poet’s Corner at Westminster Abbey. [Jerry got it.]

CHALLENGE #92:  Name five Founding Fathers who have been involved in duels, and one who refrained because his opponent was the sitting president.


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POTPOURRI #93   November 8

Featured Quote:  “We have always known that heedless self-interest was bad morals.  We know now that it is bad economics.”  FDR

BIG Q #5: Is the ‘Religious Right’ dead?


351.  By 1820, what percentage of the population that sailed toward the Americas were African slaves?  [within 5%]

352.  Which two eponymously named cars have had the spelling changed from the founder’s?

353.  The Great Gatsby was written in 1924;  how many copies were sold by the time of F. Scott Fitzgerald’s death in 1940?

354.  What was the reason for the first ticker-tape parade in NYC?

355.  What happened on the evening of October 22nd 4,004 B.C.?

1/10 of Americans over 65 have Alzheimer’s disease;  1/2 over 85 have it.

Every European language [save Italian] tells, as Erasmus said, Pandora opened a box. But the original version by the Greek poet Hesiod said it was a jar.  --Anthony Grafton

10-50% of HS football players sustain concussions whose effects range from memory probems and depression to coma and death.  --NYT

Sing along to the updated “Fire” from Carl S.: http://yeli.us/Flash/Fire.html

31% of American teens expect to be famous; 80% thought themselves to be truly important [in the 1950s it was 12%]  --Jake Halpern

There is more genetic diversity within race than between them.  --Edward F. Fischer

In the 1890s the federal government cracked down on polygamy, scattering Mormon families, Mitt Romney’s great-grandfather, who had five wives, fled to Mexico, where Romney’s father, George, was born.

Great minds discuss ideas;

Average minds discuss events;

Small minds discuss people.

Charles Schulz’s mother was Norwegian.  When she was dying she told him if they ever had another dog they should name him Snoopy--snupi being a Norwegian term of endearment.

“There are 9 personal vehicles/1000 eligible drivers in China and 11/1000 in India, compared with 1,148/1000 Americans.”  --Elizabeth Kolbert

$41 Trillion in private wealth is set to be transferred in the U.S. in the first half of this century as seniors die.  --Julie Bick

Of the 244 women who have served in the House and Senate, 46 succeeded their husbands and 12 their fathers.  --Hendrik Hertzberg

If you are supercilious [soo-pur-SIL-ee-yus], you are feeling or showing haughty disdain. You might also be condescending, highfalutin, hoity-toity, contemptuous, or arrogant. Supercilious is one of a large class of super- words which imply "aboveness." In this case, it means "above the eyelid," because -cilious comes from the Latin cilium (eyelid), source of the biological term cilium (hairlike appendage).  What is above the eyelid? The eyebrow! The word refers to the haughty lifting of the eyebrow, a frequent accompaniment of superciliousness...

There are 74,000 homeless people in Los Angeles.

“Humans were not around for 99.9999% of cosmic history.”  --Neil deGrasse Tyson

50 million Americans are over 65.

The affluent are paying less in taxes on every dollar they earn, but earning many more dollars.

Of the top 100 Wall St. traders, the last on the list earned $50 million; the top earned $1.5 Billion.

The skin disease lupus [Latin for wolf]was so named because it eats into the flesh as a wolf might.

Compared to Amtrak, airplanes use 20% more energy/passager mile and cars use 27% more.

Americans are the world’s biggest tippers.  35% said they tip “even when service is bad.”   --AARP

A global survey shows that the wealthier you are, the less likely you are to be religious--except for the U.S. and oil-rich Muslim nations.   --Pew Rsch Center

Aquatic animals “make up about 60% of all endangered species in the U.S.”  --Amer. Mus. of Natural History

Great care will be exercised around what are called 'gasoline drums,' while around a storage of what are called 'empty gasoline drums,' it will tend to be different -- even careless.  Yet the 'empty' drums are perhaps the more dangerous, since they contain explosive vapor. Physically, the situation is hazardous, but the  word 'empty,' suggests a lack of hazard. In studying the cause of a fire in 1956, Benjamin Whorf concluded that it was thinking of the "empty" gasoline drums as "empty," that is as "inert," which led to a fire he investigated. His papers and lectures featured many other examples from his insurance work to support his belief that language shapes understanding.

“I hate the poor and look forward eagerly to their extermination.”  --George Bernard Shaw


1. Act naturally

2. Found missing

3. Resident alien

4. Genuine imitation

5. Good grief

KWIKWIZ answers:

351.   Almost 77%, and from 1760 to 1820 this emigrating flow included 5.6 African slaves for every European.  By 1820 nearly 8.7 million slaves had departed from Africa for the New World.  --David Brion Davis in: “Inhuman Bondage.”

352.  Walter Kreisler [too Germanic, altho’ Chrysler Motors now officially denies it], and Kiichiro Toyoda [harder to write and pronounce?]

353.  Seven; two by himself.

354.  The dedication of the Statue of Liberty

355.  According to the academic, Bishop James Ussher in 1650, the Earth was created--according to his reading of the Bible.  But Sir James Lightfoot improved that calculation to 9 a.m. October 3, 4004 .B.C.

CHALLENGE #92 was:  Name five Founding Fathers who have been involved in duels, and one who refrained because his opponent was the sitting president. Answer: Aaron Burr killed Alexander Hamilton who had been involved in nine previous “affairs of honor;”  Burr, two others.  Button Gwinnet, a signer of the Declaration, died after a duel.  Andrew Jackson and Henry Clay took part in duels. James Monroe refrained from challenging John Adams because Adams was President at the time. Abraham Lincoln came close to a sword fight.  --from “The Last Duel” by James Lansdale  [Jerry got most of them.]

CHALLENGE #93:    What do Charles Atlas, Irving Berlin, Max Factor, Felix Frankfurter, Father Flanagan, Bob Hope and Knute Rockne have in common?


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POTPOURRI #94  November 16

Featured Quote:  “This notion that the United States is geting ready to attack Iran is simply ridiculous.  Having said that, all options are on the table.”  --George W. Bush

BIG Q #6:  Why did the Mayans abandon their cities in 900 A.D.?


356.  Which presidential candidate’s daughter has Shirley MacLaine as a godmother?

357.  Which current political pundit deliberately committed voter fraud by casting two ballots for Eisenhower?

358.  He was a working-class French Canadian from Massachusetts who won a football scholarship to Columbia, but instead wrote the mid-20th century’s answer to “Huckleberry Finn.”

359.  What do the Presidents/CEOs of these companies have in common:  American Express, McDonald’s USA, AETNA, Sears, Xerox?

360.  His father said, “I have an idiot for a son.”  He was described as the worst pupil in the school and, three times, was rejected for admission to the school of art.  His uncle called him uneducable.

“I don’t believe there is such a thing [as preventive war]; and frankly, I wouldn’t even listen to anyone seriously that came in and talked about such a thing.  --Presdient Dwight Eisenhower, August 11, 1954

Karl G. sent this:  “There is a God, though not everything we do in His name honors that.”  --Ronald Rolheiser

It takes 600 gallons of water to produce one hamburger [including raising the grain.]  --American Museum of Nat. History

Dennis Kucinich saw a U.F.O.  So did Jimmy Carter.  And Ronald Reagan saw two.  --Henrik Hertzberg

Women don’t to hear what a man thinks, they want to hear what they think--in a deeper voice.

Red-handed means 'in the very act of a crime or wrongdoing,' and 'in possession of self-incriminating evidence.'  First found in Sir Walter Scott in 1819, the form red-handed is a variant of the older form red-hand from 15th century Scottish law:  being caught in the act of committing murder, with one's hands stained red with blood.  Now: being caught in any incriminating situation. Another expression is flagrante delicto, usually "caught in flagrante delicto." This is from Medieval Latin and literally means 'while the offense is (still) burning.' Finally, there is the smoking gun, a 1970s expression for 'indisputable proof or evidence esp. of a crime.'

Fly a helicopter, from Marina N.: http://www.hurtwood.demon.co.uk/Fun/copter.swf

Leviticus gave us rules about incest, and in 635 it was 1st cousins, which was greatly expanded in 1059 by the Catholic Church [7th degree--but you could buy an exception], and later reduced to 2nd degree.  Edward Westermark argued “familiarity breeds contempt,” meaning that children raised together would lose sexual passion for each other. [It seems to work in co-ed dorms.]

“The rhetoric and rituals of wine appreciation are sometimes said to be the alimentary equivalent of lipstick on a pig:  they are meant to give an attractive sheen to the ugly business of getting drunk.”  --Michael Steinberger

Philip S. sends fall pics: http://home.att.net/%7Ehideaway_today/t083/fall.htm

82 certified Billionaires failed to make the Forbes 400 list of richest Americans. 

At the 1992 Republican National Convention, Senator John McCain was about to speak for the re-election of Bush 41 when young George told him:  “You’ve gotta hammer Clinton on the draft dodging.”  That from a man who weaved his way out of serving in Vietnam.  McCain replied, “Sorry, That’s not my thing.”  --Robert Draper

A reminder from John E.:  http://mysite.verizon.net/vze201j5/countdown.htm

By age 16, half of Americans have lost their virginity, but 5% of those over 25 are still virgins.  --Ohio State University

With over 12,000 miles of coastline, and 53% of its population in and around coastal cities and town, the U.S. is at serious risk from even small rises in sea level by global warming.

Rules of Housekeeping

1. Vacuuming too often weakens the carpet fibers. Say this with a serious face, and shudder delicately whenever anyone mentions Carpet Fresh.

2. Dust bunnies cannot evolve into dust rhinos when disturbed. Rename the area under the couch "The Galapagos Islands" and claim an ecological exemption.

3. Layers of dirty film on windows and screens provide a helpful filter against harmful and aging rays from the sun. Call it an SPF factor of 5 and leave it alone.

4. Cobwebs artfully draped over lampshades reduces the glare from the bulb, thereby creating a romantic atmosphere.

5. Explain the mound of pet hair brushed up against the doorways by claiming you are collecting it there to use for stuffing handsewn play animals for underprivileged children.

6. If dusting is REALLY out of control, simply place a showy urn on the coffee table and insist that "THIS is where Grandma wanted us to scatter her ashes..."

7. Don't bother repainting. Simply scribble lightly over a dirty wall with an assortment of crayons, and try to muster a glint of tears as you say, "Junior did this the week before that unspeakable accident... I haven't had the heart to clean it..."

8. Mix 1/4 cup pine-scented household cleaner with water in a spray bottle. Mist the air lightly. Leave dampened rags in conspicuous locations. Develop an exhausted look, throw yourself onto the couch, and sigh, "I clean and I clean and I still don't get anywhere..."

“Who, after all, speaks today of the annihilation of the Armenians?” Hitler supposedly said on August 22, 1939, as he prepared his henchmen for his race war in Europe.

Fire safety from Alan D.:  http://www.ranaldofamily.com/SWF/KitchenOilFire.wmv

More than 1 in 3 of Americans under 65 lacked health insurance at some point in 2006 or 2007.  --Paul Krugman

The French consider cheese a living thing;  in the U.S. it is dead and wrapped.  --Edward F. Fischer

KWIKWIZ answers:

356.  Dennis Kucinich

357.  Robert Novak of Valerie Plame fame.

358.  Jack Kerouac wrote “On The Road.”

359.  All are African-American

360.  The sculptor Auguste Rodin

CHALLENGE #93 was:  What do Charles Atlas, Irving Berlin, Max Factor, Felix Frankfurter, Father Flanagan, Bob Hope and Knute Rockne have in common?

Answer:  They each were immigrants who passed through Ellis Island. [Jerry got it.]

CHALLENGE #94:  They once were made of fur, tar, tree bark or liquid lead;  now they are made of latex.


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POTPOURRI #95   Friday, Nov 23

Featured Quote:  “Economic redistribution occurs to some degree in all cultures.”  --Edward F. Fischer

BIG Q #7:  Are what we call ‘Acts of God’ really ‘Acts of Man’?


361.  What is the only country that fought alongside the U.S. in every major war of the 20th and 21st century?

362.  Who was the first registered breakfast cereal “character”?

363.  Richard Hooker worked for 7 years on his humorous war novel, and it was rejected by 21 publishers.  It became a blockbuster book, movie and TV series.

364.  Which U.S. city has three restaurants specializing in the food of the Uighur people of the Xinjiang Uighur Autonomous Region of China?

365.  Rene Descartes never wrote: “Cogito ergo sum.”  Explain.

The average American consumed 4500 calories and 229 grams of fat on Thanksgiving Day.

Vocabulary test from Mike W: [44 for me; friends got 47 and 50]:  http://www.freerice.com/

“Domestic and municipal use” of water per person/day:  151 gallons in the U.S.;  118 in Britain;  10 in Ethiopia.   --Amer. Museum of Nat. History

In 7 years GW Bush signed 150 bills to which he added statements that challenged “the constitutionality of well over 1,100 separate sections in the legislation.”  --Charlie Savage

From Jim S.:  http://www.bluemountain.com/view.pd?i=177070437&m=6569&rr=y&source=bma999

In Ohio, last year, 74 1st graders were suspended for “unwelcome sexual conduct.”  In Virginia, at least 13 kindergartners have been suspended in each of the last 3 years for “sexual touching.”

In the U.S., we spend almost six times as much on health care administration as other advanced countries.  --Paul Krugman

Vincent Van Gogh to music, from Alan D.:  http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Gi_P8XwrSCU&feature=related

It is estimated that 32-100 million books have been published, and that 5-10% of known books are currently in print, and 20% are out of copyright [those before1923].  --Anthony Grafton

Men read maps better than women since only the male mind could conceive of 1 inch equaling 100 miles.

Semantic Change: Polysemy refers to words that have changed meaning:  silly originally meant “blessed, touched by the Lord;” cheap was a “simple purchase;”  uncouth previously meant unknown, unfamiliar, strange, unpleasant.  Some words had a literal meaning, but now a figurative one, e.g.: flagrant meant ‘on fire,’ and ardent meant‘burning.’ Brazen meant ‘made of brass.’ Diploma [Gr.] meant ‘folded paper,’ and diplomats handle ‘folded papers.’ [Shakespeare specialized in giving figurative uses to literal words.]

In 2005, fewer people died than in 2002, despite an increase in U.S. population.  --Daniel Gross

Choose a destination, from Alan:  http://downloads.raileurope.com/holidayCard/06_christmas_card.html

Just 40% of Americans go to church weekly, but 70% want a president with strong religious faith.   --Newsweek

Shift Happens, from Krishna K.: http://www.glumbert.com/media/shift

Coal is the only fossil fuel plentiful and cheap enough to cause irreversible ice-sheet melt and rapid sea-level rise.  The U.S. has 600 existing coal plants and 151 in development.  If built, they will operate for 50-60 years, adding billions of tons of CO2 to the atmosphere.

“Rather than love, than money, than fame, give me truth.”  --Henry David Thoreau

About 1 in 4 non-elderly Americans is underinsured, with “coverage so meager they often postponed medical care because of costs.”  --Consumer Reports

Americans spend 3.7 billion hours/year in congested traffic.  --Carl Zimmer

Water and fat don’t mix, so mixing chocolate and milk doesn’t work.  But in 1867, Henri Nestle tried to create an infant formula that wouldn’t spoil, and put milk in a sealed container, pumped out the air, and heated it until the water content evaporated.  Nine years later Daniel Peter mixed this ‘dried’ milk with cacao to make milk chocolate and won a Gold Medal in 1883.  Milton Hershey didn’t know the trick of manipulating the boiling point, and settled for slightly soured milk chocolate that his company still makes today.

‘50s & ‘60s cars from Carla: http://thefiftiesandsixties.com/CarsWeDrove.htm

Some call them by the pejorative term Eskimo, which means ‘eater of raw meat.’ They call themselves Inuit, which means ‘real people.’

From Jonnie N.:  If the population of China walked past 8 abreast, the line would never end because of population growth.

New word:  Bacn [pronounced ‘bacon’] is “spam by request.”  --Jonathon Keats

Take the price tag off our democracy:  http://www.just6dollars.org/

Read Anna Quindlen:  http://www.newsweek.com/id/57336

Life expectancy at birth is 2.6 years greater for Canadian men than for American men, and 2.3 years greater for Canadian women than American women.  Infant mortality in the U.S. is 6.8/1,000 live births, versus 5.3 in Canada.  --N. Gregory Mankiw

Beer drinker’s diet from Alan D.: http://www.metacafe.com/w/833113


6. Same difference

7. Almost exactly

8. Sanitary landfill

9. Alone together

10. Legally drunk

With the coming of the telephone, a major concern was how to address someone you cannot see;  i.e., w/o first determining their social status.  The neutral “hello” was chosen.  Bueno in France, pronto in Italy and bitte in Germany.

38 million customers paid 25¢ each to attend P.T. Barnum’s museum between 1841-1865. The total U.S. population in 1860 was under 32 million.

KWIKWIZ answers:

361.  Australia.  [Britain didn’t go to Vietnam]

362.  Quakerman in 1877

363   M*A*S*H

364.  NYC, of course

365.  That is Latin;  he wrote in French:  je pense, donc je suis.

CHALLENGE #94 was:  They once were made of fur, tar, tree bark or liquid lead;  now they are made of latex.  Answer:  Condoms.  [Gary H., Jim S. and Jerry got it--experience?]

CHALLENGE #95:  They work half the year, always in black, get four weeks vacation, and make between $200,000 and $400,000/year. 


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POTPOURRI #96   Friday Nov 30

Featured Quote:  “In Dr. Johnson’s famous dictionary, patriotism is defined as the last resort of a scoundrel.  With all due respect to an enlghtened but inferior lexicographer, I beg to submit that it is the first.”  --Ambrose Bierce

BIG Q #8:  Is true affluence the accumulation of discretionary time or of money/stuff?


366.  Which U.S. Protestant church had the most seats in 1891, and sold tickets when the pastor spoke?

367.  Where is the birthplace of punk rock?

368.  What are the fastest growing sports in the U.S.?

369.  What percentage of video gamers are 50 or older?

370.  Which Supreme Court Justice carried a rifle from home to school on the subway?

Jumbo means ‘really big’ and came from the name of the elephant in Barnum’s Circus.  The beast came from the Royal Zoo in London that named him, probably from a corruption of a Swahili word for “chief.”

Alan D. asks ‘What Will Matter?’:  http://susie1114.com/LiveALife.html

At least 200,000 MDs in the U.S. receive drug money to help market drugs--that’s about 25%.   --Daniel Carlat, M.D.

Learn about the “internet thing” at:  http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=PPsUmhqncAg

Homosexual conduct is still a crime in Alabama.

9/11 terrorists needed only $300,000 to pull it off;  the London subway attacks of July 2005 cost less than $1,000.  Why do we have stringent bank reporting laws which cost banks $8 Billion/year?  Most of the million reports go unread and unprocessed.    --Paul B. Brown

Joe O’B. just read an article on the dangers of drinking that scared him to quit immediately--no more reading.

So-called charitable hospitals no longer give out charity.  They charge poor people more than those with insurance [negotiated rates], and when they can’t pay, they sue them.  --Thomas Geoghegan

RI hospital operated on the wrong side of the brain for the 3rd time this year, from Mike W.  http://www.msnbc.msn.com/id/21981965/from/ET/

Poor performing and deposed CEOs of Merrill and Citigroup were paid $48 million and $25.6 million, respectively, last year.

People will forget what you said.

People will forget what you did, but

People will never forget how you made them feel.

In the 1920s and 30s Reverend Sylvester Graham, a founder of the American Vegetarian Society and the inventor of the eponymous cracker, argued that, with a proper [flesh-free] diet, lust could be almost entirely extinguished.

Novel tic-tac-toe from Alan D.:  http://www.animaxinteractive.com/banana/Games/tictactoe.html

There is no original sin and no predestination in Mormonism.  It is a religion that preaches optimistic assumptions about human nature, including the premise that humans can become like God in the afterlife.

Romantic love is a Western concept that began in 11-12 century France.

--Edward F. Fischer


11. Clean coal

12. Living dead

13. Small crowd

14. Business ethics

15. Soft rock

Spiders on drugs:  http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=sHzdsFiBbFc

Christmas thought: Three Wise Women would have...asked for directions, arrived on time, helped deliver the baby, cleaned the stable, made a casserole, brought practical gifts...and there would be Peace on Earth.

It takes over 3 liters of water to produce an empty plastic water bottle.

Less than half of all medical care in U.S. is supported by good evidence that it works.  --Congressional Budget Office

Mississippi has the lowest cremation rate in the U.S. [< 10%].  HI is 66%; NV is 65%.  The Roman Catholic Church ruled cremation acceptable in 1963; and in 1977 said the remains could be present at a funeral mass.  --Daniel Gross

The word Chancery is from ‘chancel’ or the chapel of the king where court chaplains originally spent time between services writing the king’s letters.  Chancery English standardized spelling w/o regard for punctuation.  But, pedants of the Renaissance created pseudo-etymological spelling:  debt and doubt never had a B in them, but were respelled to look like Latin words debitum and dubiare.  Adventure, perfect and verdict never had a D or C [from the French], and were respelled to look Latin. So, spelling reflects history rather than pronunciation.

Craig’s List ‘ads’:  http://www.kasperhauser.com/khmc/

Jesus is mentioned more in the Koran than Muhammed.

Dijon mustard dates to about 1200:  verjuice, an extract of unripe grapes, added to a paste of ground mustard seed and vinegar.

KWIKWIZ answers:

366.  Russell Conway’s Baptist Church at Temple University in Philly.

367. In the ‘70s at CBGB, 315 Bowery [between 1st and 2nd Sts] in the East Village.  It closed in 2006.  Its founder, Hilly Kristal named the club CBGB & OMFUG, for the kind of music offered: “country, bluegrass, blues and other music for uplifting gourmandizers.”

368.  skateboarding, kayaking/rafting, snowboarding and archery

369.  25% according to AARP

370.  Antonin Scalia as he traveled from home in Queens to school in Manhattan where he was on the rifle team

CHALLENGE #95 was:  They work half the year, always in black, get four weeks vacation, and make between $200,000 and $400,000/year.  Answer: Several said:  Supreme Court Justices, Blackwater operators, NYC stagehands and mob hitmen, but Ron P got it right the first time:  Umpires in Major League Baseball

CHALLENGE #96:  What do bread, vanilla, wine and prosciutto have in common?


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POTPOURRI #97   Friday Dec 6

Featured Quote:  “We must speak with all the humility that is appropriate for our limited vision, but we must speak...there is such a thing as being too late...Life often leaves us standing bare, naked, and dejected with lost opportunity ...over the bleached bones of numerous civilizations are written the pathetic words:  ‘Too late.’”  --Martin Luther King

BIG Q #9:  What happened to the goal of “a world without nuclear weapons”?

VIDEO of the WEEK:  http://warongreed.org/


371.  Which was the first nation ever founded without establishment of a church/religion?

372.  How many Supreme Court appointments in past 40 years by a Democratic President?

373.  What is the best-selling young-adult novel of all time?

374.  How many states have contributed a White House Christmas tree?

375.  Six years aftter pleading near poverty in a divorce case this multimillionaire is running for president.

Hospitals and doctors sue their patients far more often than their patients sue them.  --Thomas Geoghegan

Philip S. submitted:  “Ever notice, the older we get, the more we’re like computers?  We start out with lots of memory and drive, then we become outdated, and eventually have to get our parts replaced.”

The legacy of GWB: He made half the world hate us, and put us in debt to the other half.

Alphabet for Life: Accept differences Be kind Count your blessings Dream Express thanks Forgive Give freely Harm no one Imagine more Jettison anger Keep confidences Love truly Master something Nurture hope Open your mind Pack lightly Quell rumors Reciprocate Seek wisdom Touch hearts Understand Value truth Win graciously Xeriscape Yearn for peace Zealously support a worthy cause.

Weird Canadian restaurants:  www.canpages.ca/blog/?p=8

Noah Webster’s 1828 “American Dictionary” changed spellings to honor, color, music, center, defense, etc.

40% of Americans return at least 1 gift after the holidays.  --Nat’l Retail Fed.

Consumer Reports’ honest/important info on drugs:  http://www.consumerreports.org/health/prescription-drugs.htm

Drug reps get weekly printouts tracking doctors’ prescriptions [for targeting and rewards].  The pharmacies don’t release doctors’ names, but the AMA matches them to specific physicians and makes millions of dollars/year doing it.   --Daniel Carlat, M.D.

Political fact-checker [St. Petersburg Times]:  http://www.politifact.com/truth-o-meter/

Great Female Comebacks:

He: "Haven't we met before?"  She: "Yes, I'm the receptionist at the VD Clinic."

He: "Haven't I seen you someplace before?  She: "Yeah, that's why I don't go there anymore."

He: "Is this seat empty?  She: "Yes, and this one will be too if you sit down."

He: "So, wanna go back to my place?"  She: "Well, I don't know. Will two people fit under a rock?"

He: "Your place or mine?"  She: "Both. You go to yours and I'll go to mine."

He: "So what do you do for a living?"  She: "I'm a female impersonator."

He: "What sign were you born under?"  She: "No Parking."

He: "Hey, baby, what's your sign?" She: "Do not Enter"

1 in 5 Americans knowingly bought fake goods last year.  --Gallop

What I’m getting for Christmas, and what we’re giving our g’kids:  www.villagebanking.org

Some plants have a defense against being eaten by insects and animals:  a bitter-tasting toxin called an alkaloid. 12,000 are known to science, including:  quinine, codeine, cocaine, caffeine, ephedrine, strychnine and nicotine--most come from the tropics.

Tariffs are a tax on the consumer.

Milton, in Paradise Lost, first used the word pandemonium which literally means all [pan] the demons--from the Greek--and they together make a lot of noise.

The logic of the 18th century ruled to eliminate the use of double negatives in language.

Beautiful and moving:  http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ZbwJarFL1c8

“What we see depends mainly on what we look for.”  --John Lubbock

It takes 17 Million barrels of oil to make the 8 Billion plastic water bottles we use each year.

Eponym.  A scrooge is 'a miserly person' (in Dickens' A Christmas Carol) and Pollyanna 'a blindly optimistic person' (from Eleanor Porter's novels).  Seatlh, an Indian chief, gave us Seattle. Eponym [EP-uh-nim] and eponymous [eh-PON-uh-mus] are from a Greek adjective meaning 'upon name.'   Eponyms can be compound nouns (Melba toast), verbs (lynch), altered forms (dunce), suffixed forms (galvanize), blends (gerrymander) or possessive (Alzheimer's disease).  Some are trademarked: Listerine and Levi's.  Some eponyms were originally capitalized [boycott] and others [maverick] were always lowercase. Some are still capitalized [Pollyanna], others go either way [S(s)crooge]. Got any?

100 Billion bacteria live and work in a single centimeter of our lower intestine. --Neil deGrasse Tyson

Type in a name for candid shots of your candidate:  http://www.flickr.com/

Health care costs have risen in the U.S. significantly faster than the overall economy or personal incomes for over 40 years.  --NYT

Will Ferrell and ‘The Landlord”:  http://www.funnyordie.com/videos/74

The greatest mistake in life is to be in constant fear that you’ll make it.

KWIKWIZ answers:

371.  The U.S.A.

372.  2

373.  “The Outsiders” by 17 year-old S.E. Hinton--40 years ago

374.  16

375.  Rudy Guiliani

CHALLENGE #96 was:  What do bread, vanilla, wine and prosciutto have in common?  Answer: All made from the miracle of fermentation. [Responses from Gary H.: They are all on my menu tonight.  They were all invented by the Chinese?  They all prevent heart disease?  Santa Claus prefers them to cookies and warm milk?]

CHALLENGE #97:  What company has 5 times as many world-wide locations as McDonalds, Starbucks, BurgerKing and WalMart combined? 


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POTPOURRI #98   Special Edition:  NT part I

The New Testament: Historical & Literary Analysis --  Part One

Nota bene:  The following are some of my notes after hearing 24 lectures by Bart Ehrman of UNC-Chapel Hill.  His study of the NT is NOT theological, but only historical and literary.  I hope no one takes offense from this.  Of course, like all student notes, I may have made errors in what I have recorded.

Featured Quote:  “Scarcely a single major writer in the last 2,000 years has failed to rely on the web of meaning contained in the New Testament to communicate.  Yet the New Testament is also among the most widely disputed and least clearly understood books in history.”  -- Bart Ehrman

BIG Q #10:  Has Christmas become more pagan than pius?


376.  What was Jesus’ hometown?  

377.  Did Jesus die before or after the Passover meal?

378.  What time did Jesus die? 

379.  Were the Gospels written in Aramaic, Latin, Hebrew or Greek?

380.  Did Jesus ‘cleanse the Temple,’ at the start of His ministry or the last week of His life?

381.  After Jesus raised Lazarus from the dead, did He want the world to know or not know?

382,  Did Jesus do miracles to help those in need or to show his identity?

383.  What are the earliest Christian writings? 

384.  For the 100 years after His death, how frequently was Jesus mentioned in Pagan and Jewish sources?

385.  What are the Synoptic gospels?

Some Interesting points:

•  The gospels date from 1st c. or so...roughly 50-120 A.D. [35-65 years after death of Jesus, about 30 A.D.]--akin to writing the first accounts of the presidency of Lyndon Johnson at turn of 21st c. w/o any written sources from the time.

•  Gospels were written anonymously, and ascribed to M/M/L/J in the 2nd c.  In the Pythagorean School, e.g., it was common to sign one’s teacher’s name in your treatise to demonstrate humility and appreciation [gratitude & modesty].  [The Illiad & Odyssey were not written by Homer or any one person, e.g., likewise Moses and the Pentateuch.]

•  All manuscripts contain mistakes (including his one) [ms means ‘by hand’].  5,400 Greek copies extant...a thousand in Latin, and other languages....no two are exactly alike.  Earliest are tiny papyrus fragments the size of a credit card.  Earliest full ms: 4th c.  Vast number from middle-ages’ monasteries.

•  They contain more differences than there are words in the New Testament.  Single most common mistake is misspelling, sometimes skipped words/lines/pages.  There were no punctuation marks, paragraphs or spaces between words, and margin notes were sometimes inserted.  

•  The disciples were lower-class, uneducated peasants who spoke Aramaic; the gospel writers were highly educated and literate in Greek. [Peter and John were identified as illiterate.]

•  Jewish religion in 1st c. was more diverse than Christianity today.

•  Jews expected the Messiah to be a figure of grandeur and power against forces of evil.  Deuteronomy says:  “cursed is he who hangs from a tree.”

•  Mark argued Jesus was the messiah because he suffered and died.

•  In the 2nd c. Jews were blamed for the death of Jesus.

•  Criminal activity was not clearly defined in the Roman Empire, threre were no binding criminal laws in the Empire.  Provinces were ruled by governors [local aristocrats or Roman aristocracy] and they had two jobs:  raise tax and keep the peace. They were given free reign.


•  Synoptics vs. John.   Synoptics:  Jesus never proclaimed a future kingdom; used parables; never said he was divine.  Term ‘Son of God’ was common and didn’t mean divine, e.g. Solomon: king, but mortal.  Miracles not to show divinity but to help those in need--compassion vs. John:  no parables, miracles to provide evidence, God came to earth for salvation, no virgin birth...Jesus pre-existed, eternal life brought here & now;  speaks of His own identity as God.  Synoptics: miracles to help others not to be a sign of who He is, vs John: miracles proved His identity, called “signs” not miracles.

•  Matthew:  no shepherds, but wise men

•  Emphases:  Mark [earliest Gospel]: He was misunderstood as Son of God--an unexpected messiah;  Matt:  Jewish law--Jewish messiah according to scriptures;  Luke:  rejected by Jews, therefore a prophet to all people

•  Mark: 14-12: Jesus died 9 a.m.  after passover meal.  John:  last meal, but not said Passover meal; no mention of symbolic bread/wine; died at noon [chief priests kill lambs at that time] on the day of preparation [19-14].  He was the passover lamb slaughtered--‘lamb of God’ said two times;  John changed historical data to make a theological point.

•  Beatitudes--different emphasis:  Matt: Blessed are the poor in spirit;  Luke: Blessed are the poor and the hungry.  

•  The best Mark ms does not contain the final 12 verses:  no one sees Jesus after His rise from the dead.

•  Only Luke tells about the Good Samaritan, and the Jesus-as-boy story: 12-year-old left behind from caravan, found in Temple days later.  Jesus is the saviour of the world...emphasis on social aspects, compassion for poor, downtrodden,  oppressed.  Luke also wrote Acts, the only surviving account of history of earliest Christianity after Jesus, up through Paul.

•  John [son of Zebedee]  Discrepancies from Synoptics:  cleansing of temple [beginning not end of ministry] and day of death.  Rather than refusing to do miracles to prove His identity, this is what He does;  Rather than teach repentance, He teaches about Himself:  who He is, why He came and how He alone can bring salvation.

•  In the oldest and best John ms,:  The ‘woman taken into adultery,’ with the famous line: “He who is w/o sin cast the first stone,” is not included. The writing style of that story is different from the rest of ‘John,’...therefore, it was likely added in the 12th century.

•  1 John 5, 7-8 [re the Trinity] is not in any Greek ms, until 15th century.

•  John doesn’t relate any parables and never proclaims a future coming kingdom.

•  Mark & Luke list different number of generations back to Abraham, David, etc., in order to make their individual point.  Luke & Matthew give different fathers and g’fathers, etc. to Joseph.

•  Mark:  end of world is imminent;  not so with Luke:  Kingdom of God was already at hand with coming of Christ.

•  After Jesus’s death:  Mark: distraught, abandoned, forsaken;  Luke:  calm and in complete control.

KWIKWIZ answers:

376.  Matt:  Bethlehem;  Luke: Nazareth

377.  Mark:  after; John: before.

378.  Mark:  9 a.m.;  John:  Noon

379.  Greek

380.  John: start of His ministry;  Matt/Mark/Luke: last week of life

381.  Mark: keep it quiet;  John: spread the word.

382.  Matt/Mark/Luke: to help; John doesn’t call them miracles, but signs of who he is

383.  Paul wrote 15-20 years before the Gospels were written

384.  Not at all.

385.  Matthew/Mark/Luke.  Synoptic means ‘seen together’ or ‘beside each other.’


The Bible at the ‘click of a button’ from Philip S.:  www.biblegateway.com/versions/?action=getVersionInfo&vid=31 

Best Christmas card ever from Carl S.:  http://ecard.ashland.edu/index.php?ecardYear=2004adm

CHALLENGE #97 was:  What company has 5 times as many world-wide locations as McDonalds, Starbucks, BurgerKing and WalMart combined?   Answer:  Although they went bankrupt in 1992, Western Union is back, transferring money. [Jerry got it.]

CHALLENGE #98:  Identify who uses the glyph combining the male and female medical symbols.  


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POTPOURRI #99   DEc 20

Featured Quote:  “It is not easy to find happiness in ourselves, and it is not possible to find it elsewhere.”  --Agnes Repplier

BIG Q #11:  When/why did prices change from “cost + fair profit,” to “whatever the market will bear”?


386.  Why are residents of $4 million apartments in Manhattan forced to go to the basement?

387.  Which was the first program to show a toilet on television?

388.  On what was Silent Night first played on?

389.  The Model T Ford changed price from 1910 to 1914.  By how much?

390.  Where is the only place that WalMart is unionized?

Holiday gift ideas: www.changingthepresent.org/

The Christmas list wanted from the Bush Administration and Congress:

•  Restore Habeas Corpus

•  Stop Illegal Spying

•  Ban Torture, Really

•  Close the CIA Prisons

•  Account for ‘Ghost Prisoners’

•  Ban Exraordinary Rendition

•  Tighten the Definition of Combatant

•  Screen Prisoners Fairly and Effectively

•  Ban Tainted Evidence

•  Ban Secret Evidence

•  Better Define ‘Classified’ Evidence

•  Respect the Right to Counsel

Carl S. says to look UP:  www.flixxy.com/hubble-deep-field.htm

Hagiography (hag-ee-OG-ruh-fee, hay-jee-) is biased, uncritical praise of a person, especially by a biographer. It’s from the Greek for ‘holy writing.’  It originally meant:  ‘the writing and study of literature dealing with the lives and legends of the saints.’

More Great Female Comebacks:

He: "How do you like your eggs in the morning?" She: "Unfertilized!"

He: "Hey, come on, we're both here at this bar for the same reason" She: "Yeah! Let's pick up some chicks!"

He: "I know how to please a woman." She: "Then please leave me alone."

He: "I want to give myself to you." She: "Sorry, I don't accept cheap gifts."

He: "If I could see you naked, I'd die happy: She: "Yeah, but if I saw you naked, I'd probably die laughing."

He: "Your body is like a temple." She: "Sorry, there are no services today."

He: "I'd go through anything for you." She: "Good! Let's start with your bank account.”

He: "I would go to the end of the world for you. She: "Yes, but would you stay there?”

Conjoined twins from George G.:  http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=bFs8TnUX9Fs

“If I had no sense of humor, I would long ago have committed suicide.”  --Mohatma Gandhi

There’s a $2,000 Federal tax credit for residential solar energy systems, through 2008. The bill to extend it is being debated. Go to http://seia.org/itc.php,

At 46, Isabella Baumfree changed her name to Sojourner Truth and began a lifelong mission advocating abolition and women’s rights. Born into slavery, Truth escaped to freedom with her infant daughter Sophia and took refuge with a Quaker family until the New York State Emancipation Act was passed. In 1851 she attended the Ohio Women’s Rights Convention and delivered her famous “Ain’t I a Woman” speech, which drew on the common ground of oppression felt by Southern blacks and Northern women and called for equality for men and women of all colors, a goal she pursued until her death in 1883.

God is the answer when we don’t know the answer.

Great Christmas gift from Alan D.:  www.youtube.com/watch?v=TYIOIM6hHBk

“Emerging adulthood” is a time between 18-30, when marriage and parenthood are often delayed, formal schooling is prolonged, job switching is frequent and parental support is extended.  --Christian Smith

Predicting today in 1967:  www.ultimatenewsflash.blogspot.com/

77% of Americans 49-55 believe “50 is the new 40.”  --McNeil Consumer Hlthcare

Nearly 6,000 American teens die in car crashes each year, and every year for the past decade.

White Christmas from Carla:  http://www.thecompassgroup.biz/merryxmas.swf

How tolerant were the Pilgrims? In 1660 they hanged Mary Dyer, a 40ish mother of 6 for boisterous declarations of her Quaker beliefs.  Later, they made a heroine of Hannah Duston who escaped captivity by killing 10 Indians with a hatchet (6 were children) and collecting a bounty for their scalps.  --Gary Wills

Stay Tuned: The universe is about 4 Billion years old, and it’s estimated that the sun will implode in another 4 Billion years.  So, in terms of the development of life, we are half-way to what we will become.   --Philippe Starck

The Case for Informed Optimism [worth your 20 mins.]:  http://www.ted.com/index.php/talks/view/id/177

  The Rules of Judaism [from Barry L.]:

     -  If you can't say something nice, say it in Yiddish.

      -  If it tastes good, it's probably not kosher.

      -  No one looks good in a yarmulke.

      -  Why spoil a good meal with a big tip?

      -  WASPs leave and never say good-bye. Jews say good-bye and never leave.

      -  20% off is a bargain; 50% off is a mitzvah.

-  Israel is the land of milk and honey; Florida is the land of milk of magnesia.

-  If your name was Lipschitz, you'd change it, too.

-  If you don't eat, it will kill me.

-  Next year in Jerusalem. The year after that, how about a nice cruise?

      -  Spring ahead, fall back, winter in  Miami Beach.

      -  Without Jewish mothers, who would need therapy?

      -  No meal is complete without leftovers.

      -  If you have to ask the price, you can't afford it. But if you can afford it, make sure you tell everybody what you paid.

Bill Kilner sugests that Christmas be combined with Yom Kippur, the Jewish day of atonement, and it be called “Yule Be Sorry.”

A cynosure is a person or thing that is the center of attention or admiration: The Queen was the cynosure of all eyes.

Top price for a seat to watch the terrible NY Knicks basketball team:  $1,800

Carl S. sent this test:  http://www.flashbynight.com/test/  [I got 22]

In the last six months on the top 20 TV shows, Coke appeared 3,054 times in ‘product placements.’

Lessons learned from Donna:  www.frontiernet.net/~jimdandy/specials/life/life.htm

The typical 6-foot American earned $5,525 more than a 5-foot-5-inch worker, after correcting for sex, age and weight. One explanation: height breeds self-esteem from the teenage years onward;  another: better nourished as infants, so a higher IQ.

KWIKWIZ answers:

386.  To wash their clothes since washer/dryers are not allowed in apartments.

387.  “Leave It To Beaver”

388.  a washboard

389.  In 1910 it was $780; and in 1914 it was only $360--the assembly line.

390.  China

CHALLENGE #98 was:  Identify the glyph combining the male and female medical symbols. Answer: The name used by Prince Rogers Nelson since 1992, a k a Prince. [Mike W. got it.]

CHALLENGE #99:  What do the younger members of the three pairs of presidents share?  Bushes 41/43; Adamses 2/6 and Harrisons 9/23


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