Archives for June 2006

A Simple Difference Between Boys & Girls

I have 17,000 younger sisters. Ok, maybe 17,000 is an exaggeration but I am my father’s only son and on more than one occasion complained to him about not having a brother.

As a parent I have noticed many differences between my son and daughter. At the moment there is one that stands out from the rest.

Why do little girls love shrieking so much. My daughter has a high pitched scream that could wake the dead.

My son never did this or anything close to this.

Don’t get me wrong, I love my children equally. But I also love the ability to hear and a couple more banshee screams and I might become deaf.

He is Smarter Than the Average Bear

“GOLDEN, British Columbia – A freedom-loving grizzly bear named Boo smashed a heavy steel door and barreled through two electric fences to escape a second time from a resort near this south-central British Columbia town.

Boo was recaptured Friday, two weeks after breaking out of an artificial den at the Kicking Horse Mountain Resort, but escaped from tighter confinement within a day, resort spokesman Michael Dalzell said Tuesday.

“It’s unbelievable,” Dalzell said. “We thought there was no way, it was absolutely impossible, but he found a way. It was basically like breaking out of Fort Knox.”

He said the bear bashed a nearly 400-pound steel door off its four bolts, destroyed an electrical box while tearing through two electric fences and scrambled over a 12-foot fence anchored with 2 feet of steel below ground.

“I think he just kept charging it (the door) and charging it until it broke off its bolts,” Dalzell said. “Everything was completely trashed. We are dealing with a pretty smart and determined bear.”

Better hide those picnic baskets, Yogi is determined.

The Secret to Living Past 80: Make it to 65

Simple advice, don’t you think.

“In aging, as with many things in life, it’s best to take things one step at a time.

Doctors conclude in the July issue of Harvard Health Letter that one of the best ways to help ensure you’ll live past 80 is to first set your sights on making it to 65.

The Harvard Medical School publication also finds that according to various studies, Americans are living significantly longer and healthier lives than just a few years ago. This is good news for the country’s aging baby boomers, or “abbies,” as the researchers call them.

The raw numbers

But America will have to play catch up if it wants to match the health and life expectancies of some other countries.

The latest figures from the U.S. National Center for Health Statistics state that life expectancy in the United States is 77.6 years. This is a significant improvement from 1990, when life expectancy was 75.4 years, but it’s lower than some other countries.

In Japan, for example, the average life expectancy is 80. Compared to the rest of the world, American males and females rank 12th and 15th, respectively, in life expectancy at age 65.

The silver lining

Today, an American man who makes it to 65 can expect to live 81.6 years. Then if he manages to make it to 85, he can expect to live long enough to blow out the candles on his 90th birthday cake.

Click here for the full story.

Thoughts About My Grandfather

Even thought it has been a relatively short period of time since the loss of my grandfather it feels like it was forever. I suppose that this is due to some of the things that happened prior to his death.

In August it will be three years since my grandmother died and looking back it is easy to see how her loss weighed upon him and helped to accelerate his decline.

When my grandfather was happy there was a twinkle in those soulful blue eyes of his. It was joined by a smile that always made you wonder what kind of mischief he was about to get into. It is the same kind of look that people say I have.

My buddy G says that whenever I get that look he knows it is time to hold onto his wallet and prepare himself for some kind of trouble, mostly the kind that involves way too much fun.

I suppose that you could call my grandfather a bit of a rascal. He loved to read and spent hours absorbed in books, but had little interest in being tested upon his knowledge. School was never his thing. He never went to college but he was street savvy and easily navigated his way through the world.

He spent time as a carnie in a traveling carnival, was a veteran and held various salesjobs. He loved to gamble and spent part of his time in the service as a pool shark.

There are hundreds of stories about things that he did. Here is one that has always been a favorite of mine.

At one point in time during his high school career he got himself into trouble and was suspended from school. In order to be readmitted the school insisted that he come back with his father.

My grandfather knew that to bring back his father would mean being punished at home and came up with a plan to avoid his father’s displeasure.

So he paid a man that he knew to come to school and pretend to be his father. The two of them sat down and listened as the school administration explained what the problem was and why my grandfather had gotten into trouble.

Midway through this lecture the man pretending to be my grandfather’s father belted him on the head and swore that when he got home he would be severely punished for his transgressions.

Once the meeting ended and they were back on the street my grandfather angrily confronted the man and asked him what the hell he was thinking.

“You wanted it to look real, didn’t you,” came the reply.

And that is just one of the many stories I know about my dear grandfather.

Harry Potter Thoughts

Soccer Dad has a nice post about Harry. Check it out here.