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WITandWISDOM(tm) - August 31, 2000

~~~~~~~ THOUGHTS:

"The pessimist complains about the wind; the optimist expects it to change; the realist adjusts the sails." - Parables, etc.

Source: Weekend Encounter, by Dick Innes, Copyright 2000 www.actsweb.org/subscribe.htm via http://www.witandwisdom.org


Years ago my dad and his younger brother, Bill, skipped school on the opening day of rabbit season to hunt with grandpa. Grandpa gave his approval on the condition that the boys would not lie when asked the reason for their absence. They took the deal and skipped school to hunt rabbits. Evening came quickly and after a nice dinner with fresh meat the boys tumbled into bed, but they would face the judgement at school the next day.

They weren't alone.

The boys were called upon to account for their absence the following day. They joined a long line of boys at the principal's office. Most of the other boys claimed there were sick (they were sick of having to go to school on opening day of rabbit season).

My father and uncle, true to their word, told the truth. "We were rabbit hunting with our dad," they said.

"Are you sure you weren't feeling just a little under the weather, boys?" the principal asked.

"No, sir, we were feeling fine, and we were rabbit hunting with our dad."

For punishment they were made to stay after school one hour each night until they had made up the time they had missed.

On the final day of my dad's punishment, the teacher, out of sympathy, walked back to the aisle where he was sitting and gave him a little gift. It was tiny start of a pine tree in a cut-off milk carton. It didn't seem like much compensation for the suffering he endured, but he carried it home.

That night, he and grandpa set it out in the back yard of their home on Bowers Avenue in Newark, Ohio.

A few years later, my father was serving in the Navy in Korea, and my Uncle Bill was married and gone. My grandfather had also realized a life long dream when he and grandma were able to buy a small farm north of town. It was nestled in the hills where he had grown up. Along with their other belongings, grandpa took the time to dig up the little pine tree to bring to his new farm. He set it out at the base of the hill by the spring run.

It's always been a source of beauty. It's a haven for birds. In the winter its branches are flocked with snow and the glow of multi-colored lights. It's fed year round by the spring at its feet.

But I know that it is more than that.

It is a forty foot tall monument to the virtue of truthfulness.

By Kenneth L. Pierpont baptist1@ncats.net

Kenneth L. Pierpont is a father of four boys and four girls and lives with his wife, Lois in Fremont, Michigan where he is the Senior Pastor of First Baptist Church. His hobby is story-gathering and story telling. He speaks frequently to groups, camps, conferences and retreats and spices his messages with stories.

Source: HumorG, Humor_G-subscribe@onelist.com via http://www.witandwisdom.org

~~~~~~~ THIS & THAT:

By Bud Herron

Some people say cats never have to be bathed. They say cats lick themselves clean. They say cats have a special enzyme of some sort in their saliva that works like new, improved Wisk - dislodging the dirt where it hides and whisking it away.

I've spent most of my life believing this folklore. Like most blind believers, I've been able to discount all the facts to the contrary - the kitty odors that lurk in the corners of the garage and dirt smudges that cling to the throw rug by the fireplace.

The time comes, however, when a man must face reality; when he must look squarely in the face of massive public sentiment to the contrary and announce:

"This cat smells like a port-a-potty on a hot day in Juarez."

When that day arrives at your house, as it has in mine, I have some advice you might consider as you place your feline friend under you arm and head for the bathtub:

+ Know that although the cat has the advantage of quickness and lack of concern for human life, you have the advantage of strength. Capitalize on that advantage by selecting the battlefield. Don't try to bathe him in an open area where he can force you to chase him. Pick a very small bathroom. If your bathroom is more than four feet square, I recommend that you get in the tub with the cat and close the sliding-glass doors as if you were about to take a shower. (A simple shower curtain will not do. A berserk cat can shred a three-ply rubber shower curtain quicker than a politician can shift positions.)

+ Know that a cat has claws and will not hesitate to remove all the skin from your body. Your advantage here is that you are smart and know how to dress to protect yourself. I recommend canvas overalls tucked into high-top construction boots, a pair of steel-mesh gloves, an army helmet, a hockey face mask and a long-sleeve flak jacket.

+ Prepare everything in advance. There is no time to go out for a towel when you have a cat digging a hole in your flak jacket. Draw the water. Make sure the bottle of kitty shampoo is inside the glass enclosure. Make sure the towel can be reached, even if you are lying on your back in the water.

+ Use the element of surprise. Pick up your cat nonchalantly, as if to simply carry him to his supper dish. (Cats will not usually notice your strange attire. They have little or no interest in fashion as a rule. If he does notice your garb, calmly explain that you are taking part in a product- testing experiment for J.C. Penney.)

+ Once you are inside the bathroom, speed is essential to survival. In a single liquid motion, shut the bathroom door, step into the tub enclosure, slide the glass door shut, dip the cat in the water and squirt him with shampoo. You have begun one of the wildest 45 seconds of your life. Cats have no handles.

Add the fact that he now has soapy fur, and the problem is radically compounded. Do not expect to hold on to him for more that two or three seconds at a time. When you have him, however, you must remember to give him another squirt of shampoo and rub like crazy. He'll then spring free and fall back into the water, thereby rinsing himself off. (The national record is - for cats - three latherings, so don't expect too much.)

+ Next, the cat must be dried. Novice cat bathers always assume this part will be the most difficult, for humans generally are worn out at this point and the cat is just getting really determined. In fact, the drying is simple compared to what you have just been through. That's because by now the cat is semi-permanently affixed to your right leg. You simply pop the drain plug with your foot, reach for your towel and wait. (Occasionally, however, the cat will end up clinging to the top of your army helmet. If this happens, the best thing you can do is to shake him loose and to encourage him toward your leg.) After all the water is drained from the tub, it is a simple matter to just reach down and dry the cat.

In a few days the cat will relax enough to be removed from your leg. He will usually have nothing to say for about three weeks and will spend a lot of time sitting with his back to you. He might even become psycho ceramic and develop the fixed stare of a plaster figurine.

You will be tempted to assume he is angry. This isn't usually the case. As a rule he is simply plotting ways to get through your defenses and injure you for life the next time you decide to give him a bath. But, at least now he smells a lot better.


If you don't want anyone to get your goat, don't let them know where you have it tied.


Of all the people I've met you're certainly one of them.

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

~~~~~~~ TRIVIA:

Why does holding your breath cure hiccups? . . .

Hiccups are one of the most frustrating things that can happen; suddenly you're making this ridiculous noise, you can't stop, it's embarrassing, and the more upset you get, the more you hiccup. Where's the "off" button?

Fortunately, you've got the cure inside you: It's the carbon dioxide that you normally exhale. Carbon dioxide can stop your diaphragm from contracting - the cause of your discomfort.

If you hold your breath - turning your face a dramatic and impressive beet red, incidentally - enough carbon dioxide will often build up in your lungs and in a few seconds, your hiccups are history. (Of course, doing this for too long will cure the hiccups but kill the patient.)

From: Why in the World Reader's Digest

Source: MailBits.com Copyright (c) 1998-2000. All rights reserved. Trivia-subscribe@mailbits.com via http://www.witandwisdom.org

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