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WITandWISDOM(tm) - December 5, 2000

~~~~~~~ THOUGHTS:

In order that all men may be taught to speak truth, it is necessary that all likewise should learn to hear it. - Samuel Johnson

Source: The Daily Quote quotes-subscribe@lists.efront.com via http://www.witandwisdom.org


A mother in Naples had a young son who worked long hours in a factory, all the while yearning to be a singer. When he was ten years old, he took his first voice lesson. The teacher promptly concluded, "You can't sing. You haven't any voice at all. Your voice sounds like the wind in the shutters."

The boy's mother, however, heard greatness in her son's voice. She believed in his talent and even though they were poor, she put her arms around him and said encouragingly, "My boy, I am going to make every sacrifice to pay for your voice lessons."

This mother's confidence in her son and her constant encouragement of him through the years paid off! Her boy became one of the most widely acclaimed singers in the world. The young factory worker from Naples was Enrico Caruso.

From "God's Little Devotional Book for Mothers," p. 21, Copyright (c) 1999 Honor Books, Tulsa, Oklahoma

Source: The Timothy Report, Copyright (c) 2000 Swan Lake Communications, www.swanlake.twoffice.com via http://www.witandwisdom.org

~~~~~~~ THIS & THAT:

Author Unknown

Someone once asked me, "If you could be any person in the world, who would it be?" To which I responded without hesitation, "my twelve-year-old son."

My boy's life is one where the less pleasant elements of reality rarely intrude. His eyes unfocused, his mouth emitting sound effects, he drifts around in serene oblivion, almost never concerned about anything.

Last Saturday I interrupted his reverie and asked him to check to see if the mail had arrived. He responded agreeably enough, though it took several reminders before he actually was out the door. I went to the window to observe his progress. He made a strong start, striding purposefully toward the mailbox at the end of our driveway. Then something caught his eye and he stopped, frowning. He bent over and picked it up: a stick. It fit into his hand like a Colt pistol, and he swivelled, eyeing the trees for enemies. He spotted a couple and dove for cover, firing as he rolled. Airplanes swooped down and he switched to ground-to-air mode, jubilating when the missiles hit their targets. He spoke into his radio and did something to his forehead, probably putting on his night vision goggles. I lost sight of him as he snaked around the corner of the house.

Half an hour later he tromped in, exuberant over his military victory. I stopped him in the hallway. "Did you get the mail?"

He stared at me blankly, and I wondered whether he even knew who I was. "You were going out to get the mail," I reminded him.

His focus cleared. "Oh, yeah."

"Did you get it?"

His expression indicated he wasn't sure.

"Why don't you try again," I suggested.

Back out the door. I winced as he glanced at a tree branch, but he didn't appear tempted. His eyes acquired radar lock on the mailbox, and I sighed in relief.

Lying next to the mailbox was a football which had drifted there at the end of a neighborhood game a few weeks ago. He scooped the ball up in his arms and swerved, dodging tackles. Touchdown! I put my hands on my hips and watched him toss the ball into the air, calling for a fair catch. First down. He took the ball, fading back, out of the pocket and in trouble. I shook my head as I was treated to the spectacle of my son sacking himself for an eight-yard loss. He jumped up and shook his finger, urging his blockers to stop the blitz. They seemed to heed his admonitions on the next play he rolled left and threw right, a fantastic pass which found him wide open thirty yards down field. He trotted into the end zone and gave the crowd a mile-high salute.

When I checked back at half-time to see who was winning, mankind was on the brink. The football was jammed up inside his shirt, and he was struggling forward on his knees, looking like a soldier crawling through the desert.

He had pulled the lawn mower out of the carport, and as he fell toward it, gasping, he pulled the sacred pigskin from his shirt and, with the last reserves of his strength, touched it to the engine. He died, but civilization was saved by his heroic efforts.

No word on whether, with this triumph, mail would be delivered.

I met him at the door, pierced through his fog, and asked him to get the mail. He agreed in such as fashion as to indicate this was the first he'd heard of the subject. There was a skip in his step as he headed down the driveway, and he was making so much progress so quickly I felt my hopes growing, particularly when he reached out and actually touched the mailbox.

Alas, he was only stopping to talk to it. Conferring in low tones, he nodded, squinting into the distance. He raised the mail flag, igniting the retrorockets strapped to his back. He throttled to full power and then dropped the flag, firing off into space with his arms outstretched like Superman.

He was nowhere in sight when, half an hour later, I went out to get the mail.

Source: Jo Jokers, jo-jokers-subscribe@egroups.com via http://www.witandwisdom.org


Andy Rooney Blurb:

Ads In Bills: Have you ever noticed that they put advertisements in with your bills now? Like bills aren't distasteful enough, they have to stuff junk mail in there with them. I get back at them. I put garbage in with my check when I mail it in. Coffee grinds, banana peels . . . I write, "Could you throw this away for me? Thank You."

Source: The Funnies, andychaps_the-funnies-subscribe@egroups.com via http://www.witandwisdom.org

~~~~~~~ TRIVIA:

In his youth, Andrew Carnegie, the famous /steelmaker, worked for Thomas A. Scott, the local superintendent of the Pennsylvania Railroad. Carnegie was employed as a telegrapher, secretary, and general factotum at $35 a month.

One morning a serious railroad accident delayed the passenger trains and shunted freight trains onto the sidings, unable to move in either direction.

Scott could not be located, so Carnegie plunged into the breach - knowing what had to be done, but also aware that an error could cost him his job and perhaps criminal prosecution. He signed Scotts name to the orders and got the trains moving with no mishaps. When Scott arrived at the office, Carnegie told him what had happened. Scott carefully looked over everything that the boy had done, and said nothing. "But I noticed," Carnegie said, "that he came in very regularly and in good time for some mornings after that."

Source: Bits & Pieces, April 30, 1992, Copyright (c) Economic Press, Inc., www.epinc.com via http://www.witandwisdom.org

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