Tuesday, November 24, 2009

Congressional Reform Act

I got this in an email today and think it would really be a terrific idea!

"Congressional Reform Act:

1. Term Limits: 12 years only -Two Six year Senate terms and six Two Year House terms

2. No Tenure / No Pension: A congressman collects a salary while in office and receives no pay when they are out of office.

3. Congress (past, present & future) participates in Social Security: All funds in the Congressional retirement fund moves to the Social Security system immediately. All future funds flow into the Social Security system, Congress participates equally with the American people in the Social Security system.

4. Congress can purchase their own retirement plan just as all Americans.

5. Congress will no longer be able to vote themselves a pay raise. Congressional pay will rise by the lower of CPI or 3%.

6. Congress looses their current health care system and participates in the same health care system as the American people.

7. Congress must equally abide in and by all laws they impose on the States and the American people.

8. All contracts with past and present congressmen are void effective 1/1/11. The American people did not make this contract with congressmen, congressmen made all these contracts for themselves.

Serving in Congress is an honor, not a career. The Founding Fathers envisioned citizen legislators, serve your term(s), then go home and back to work."

Wednesday, October 28, 2009

Clinical Trials

I was searching the net for information for a friend's illness and came across this government website which lists clinical trials: http://www.clinicaltrials.gov/ It's pretty interesting if you're curious about who's looking into which diseases.

Sunday, August 23, 2009

Canadian Geese in Texas

Three years ago 2 white geese and 2 Canadian Geese came to Texas. One of the white geese had broken wings, so all 4 geese stayed in Texas through the hot Texas summer. I felt sorry for them, especially the Canadian Geese, because they should have flown north in the spring. Actually, I thought the white geese were probably the females and the black/gray geese were the males.

The next year they had 3 chicks. All the chicks grew up with the same black/gray markings of the Canadian Geese. Again, that summer they all stayed in Texas. This spring they had 7 chicks! They also grew up to become Canadian Geese. We now have a flock of 12 Canadian Geese and 2 white geese at our neighborhood lake. It wasn't until recently that I figured out that the white geese are just some sort of domestic breed. The Canadian Geese became friends with the domestic birds and won't leave them. I wonder if anyone has ever heard of such a strange thing. If you have, let me know.

Thursday, July 9, 2009

Sparkling Water by SodaStream

We just bought this neat do-dad for carbonating water. It works really well and you can carbonate almost anything. I like making flavored sparkling water, but I suppose you could carbonate green tea or cranberry juice also. We've never really been huge soda fans, but it's actually kind of fun and cheaper than buying soda at the store!

Worx Cordless Blower

So, I bought the Worx Cordless Blower. Very nice! And, I found another use for it -> Blowing the cobwebs and dust from high and low places in the HOUSE:>D Just make sure you do this first, then vacuum, because it makes a real mess on the floor.

Monday, June 8, 2009

Worx Cordless Edger/Trimmer

This is the coolest edger/trimmer. No cords to fiddle with. I got one last week and it's amazing. I did the front and back yards - edging and trimming - and the battery is still not worn down. They say it lasts 20 minutes, but I'm sure I was out there longer than that! I got mine through Amazon - free shipping! Oh, you also get free spools for life (shipping on 6 spools = $6.00). This thing actually makes yard work kind of fun:>D

Saturday, May 23, 2009


I'm not a baseball fan, but I always felt a little sorry for Darryl Strawberry. He kept getting arrested for drugs and such in the '90s, and they would show him on TV at the court hearings, but he always seemed so humble. He seemed like such a nice person. So, when his new book came out, I had to get it and I wasn't disappointed. It's written very well, and you can really hear his voice in it. He's on the good guys side now:>D Two thumbs up for the Staw Man!

Wednesday, March 11, 2009

Meet in between...

This is pretty cool, especially if you live in a big city like Dallas. If you drive from the east side of Dallas to the west side of Fort Worth, at 65 miles per hour, it takes about an hour. So this will really be handy when meeting my gal pals:


Tuesday, March 10, 2009

Horsehead and Orion Nebulae

Horsehead and Orion Nebulae
Credit & Copyright: Dale J. Martin (Massapoag Pond Obs.)
Explanation: Adrift 1,500 light-years away in one of the night sky's most recognizable constellations, the glowing Orion Nebula and the dark Horsehead Nebula are contrasting cosmic vistas. They appear in opposite corners of this stunning mosaic taken with a digital camera attached to a small telescope. The magnificent emission region, the Orion Nebula (aka M42), lies at the upper right of the picture. Immediately to its left is a prominent bluish reflection nebula sometimes called the Running Man. The Horsehead nebula appears as a dark cloud, a small silhouette notched against the long red glow at the lower left. Alnitak is the easternmost star in Orion's belt and is seen as the brightest star to the left of the Horsehead. Below Alnitak is the Flame Nebula, with clouds of bright emission and dramatic dark dust lanes. Pervasive tendrils of glowing hydrogen gas are easily traced throughout the region in this deep field image of the same region.

IRS letter...

This is pretty funny. A guy named Ed Barnett, Wichita Falls, TX wrote the following letter to the IRS:

"Dear IRS,

I am sorry to inform you that I will not be able to pay taxes owed April 15, but all is not lost.

I have paid these taxes: accounts receivable tax, building permit tax, CDL tax, cigarette tax, corporate income tax, dog licence tax, federal income tax, unemployment tax, gasoline tax, hunting licence tax, fishing licence tax, waterfowl stamp tax, inheritance tax, inventory tax, liquor tax, luxury tax, medicare tax, city, school and county property tax (up 33 percent last 4 years), real estate tax, social security tax, road usage tax, toll road tax, state and city sales tax, recreational vehicle tax, state franchise tax, state unemployment tax, telephone federal excise tax, telephone federal state and local surcharge tax, telephone minimum usage surcharge tax, telephone state and local tax, utility tax, vehicle licence registration tax, capitol gains tax, lease severance tax, oil and gas assessment tax, Colorado property tax, Texas, Colorado, Wyoming, Oklahoma and New Mexico sales tax, and many more that I can't recall but I have run out of space and money.

When you do not receive my check April 15, just know that it is an honest mistake. Please treat me the same way you treated Congressmen Charles Rangle, Chris Dodd, Barney Frank and ex-Congressman Tom Dashelle and, of course, your boss Timothy Geithner. No penalties and no interest.

P.S. I will make at least a partial payment as soon as I get my stimulus check.

Ed Barnett

Wichita Falls"

Sunday, March 8, 2009

Cleaning up your hard drive...

Here's a good tip from April 2008 "Woman's Day", p.12:

"Clean up your temporary files every 2 weeks - Go to my computer, right click C: drive, select Properties and Disk Cleanup; check Temp Files and Recycle Bin, click OK."

Wednesday, March 4, 2009

Thumb Drives

I was cleaning out some files yesterday and came upon an old receipt for a thumb drive.. In 2001, a 256 Mb thumb drive cost $159! Last week we bought a 32 Gb drive for $66!! Technology marches on!

Wednesday, February 4, 2009

Aurora from space...

Credit: Don Pettit, ISS Expedition 6, NASA
Explanation: From the ground, spectacular auroras seem to dance high above. But the International Space Station (ISS) orbits at nearly the same height as many auroras, sometimes passing over them, and sometimes right through them. Still, the auroral electron and proton streams pose no direct danger to the ISS. In 2003, ISS Science Officer Don Pettit captured the green aurora, pictured above in a digitally sharpened image. From orbit, Pettit reported that changing auroras appeared to crawl around like giant green amoebas. Over 300 kilometers below, the Manicouagan Impact Crater can be seen in northern Canada, planet Earth.

Sunday, February 1, 2009

Milky Way

The Milky Way Over Mauna Kea
Credit & Copyright: Wally Pacholka (TWAN)
Explanation: Have you ever seen the band of our Milky Way Galaxy? In a clear sky from a dark location at the right time, a faint band of light becomes visible across the sky. Soon after your eyes become dark adapted, you might spot the band for the first time. It may then become obvious. Then spectacular. One reason for a growing astonishment might be the realization that this fuzzy swath contains billions of stars and is the disk of our very own spiral galaxy. Since we are inside this disk, the band appears to encircle the Earth. Visible in the above image, high above in the night sky, the band of the Milky Way Galaxy arcs. The bright spot just below the band is the planet Jupiter. In the foreground lies the moonlit caldera of the volcano Haleakala, located on the island of Maui in Hawaii, USA. A close look near the horizon will reveal light clouds and the dark but enormous Mauna Kea volcano on the Big Island of Hawaii. If you have never seen the Milky Way band or recognized the planet Jupiter, this year may be your chance. Because 2009 is the International Year of Astronomy, an opportunity to look through a window that peers deep into the universe may be coming to a location near you.

Sunday, January 11, 2009


Credit: Cassini Imaging Team, SSI, JPL, ESA, NASA
Explanation: In the shadow of Saturn, unexpected wonders appear. The robotic Cassini spacecraft now orbiting Saturn recently drifted in giant planet's shadow for about 12 hours and looked back toward the eclipsed Sun. Cassini saw a view unlike any other. First, the night side of Saturn is seen to be partly lit by light reflected from its own majestic ring system. Next, the rings themselves appear dark when silhouetted against Saturn, but quite bright when viewed away from Saturn and slightly scattering sunlight, in the above exaggerated color image. Saturn's rings light up so much that new rings were discovered, although they are hard to see in the above image. Visible in spectacular detail, however, is Saturn's E ring, the ring created by the newly discovered ice-fountains of the moon Enceladus, and the outermost ring visible above. Far in the distance, visible on the image left just above the bright main rings, is the almost ignorable pale blue dot of Earth.

Martian Sunset

Credit: Mars Exploration Rover Mission, Texas A&M, Cornell, JPL, NASA
Explanation: This month, the Mars Exploration Rovers are celebrating their 5th anniversary of operations on the surface of the Red Planet. The serene sunset view, part of their extensive legacy of images from the martian surface, was recorded by the Spirit rover on May 19, 2005. Colors in the image have been slightly exaggerated but would likely be apparent to a human explorer's eye. Of course, fine martian dust particles suspended in the thin atmosphere lend the sky a reddish color, but the dust also scatters blue light in the forward direction, creating a bluish sky glow near the setting Sun. The Sun is setting behind the Gusev crater rim wall some 80 kilometers (50 miles) in the distance. Because Mars is farther away, the Sun is less bright and only about two thirds the size seen from planet Earth.