Category Archives: people

RIP on the moon

The final resting place for Dr. Eugene Shoemaker is the moon.

The famed U.S. Geological Survey astronomer had trained the Apollo mission astronauts about craters but never made it into space.

Dr. Shoemaker had wanted to be an astronaut but was rejected because of a medical problem.  His ashes were placed on board the Lunar Prospector spacecraft before it was launched on January 6, 1998.  NASA crashed the probe into a crater on the moon on July 31, 1999, in an attempt to learn if there was water on the moon.

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Financial Finesse

Behind in the payments on his new car, the man got a steady stream of letters from the finance company.

Starting out midly enough, the tone of the letters built up to a crescendo, capped by this warning:

“Dear Sir… What would your neighbors think if we came and repossessed your car?”

Back came this reply from the delinquent debtor:

“Dear Sirs…I took the matter up with the neighbors and they all think if would be a very lousy trick.”

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One World

We are all citizens of one world, we are all of one blood.

To hate a man because he was born in another country, because he speaks a different language, or because he take a different view on this subject or that, is a great folly.  Desist, I implore you, for we are all equally human…Let us have but one end in view, the welfare of humanity.

(david morton)

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Death of the Aged

After all, there is something tenderly appropriate in the serene death of the old.

Nothing is more touching that the death of the young, the strong.  But when the duties of live have all been nobly done; when the sun touches the horizon; when the purple twilight falls upon the past, the present and the future; when memory, with dim eyes, can scarcely spell the blurred and faded records of the vanished days- then, surrounded by kindred and friends, death comes like a strain of music.  The day has been long, the road weary, and the traveler gladly stops at the welcome inn.

Nearly forty eight yeas ago, under the snow, in the little town of Cazenovia, my poor mother was buried.  I was but two years old.  I remember her as she looked in death.  That sweet, cold face has kept my heart warm through all the changing years.

(robert ingersoll)

Wisdoms of Benjamin Franklin

Love your neighbors, but don’t pull down their hedges.

Don’t think to hunt two hares with one dog.

He that is rich need not live sparingly, and he that can live sparingly need not live rich.

None preaches better than the ant, and she says nothing.

A long life may not be good enough, but a good life is long enough.

God heals, and the doctor takes the fee.

If you’d have a good servant that you like, serve yourself.

A good example is the best sermon.

Search others for their virtues, thyself for thy vices.

Proclaim not all thou knowest, all thou owest, all thou hast, nor all thou canst.

If you would keep your secret from an enemy, tell it not to a friend.

When someone questioned Calvin Coolidge for his habitual silence

he replied,

“Well, I found out early in life that you didn’t have to explain something you hadn’t said”.

Willy Loman, Salesman

(Linda Loman is defending her husband , to her two grown sons:)

I don’t say he’s a great man.  Willy Loman never made a lot of money.  His name was never in the paper.  He’s not the finest character that ever lived.  So attention must be paid.  He’s not to be allowed to fall into his grave like an old dog. Attention, attention must be finally paid to such a person.  You called him crazy…A lot of people think he’s lost his – balance.  But you don’t have to be very smart to know what the trouble is.  The man is exhausted…A small man can be just as exhausted as a great man.  He works for a company thirty-six years this March, opens up unheard-of-territories to their trademark, and now in his old age they take his salary away…For five weeks he’s been on straight commission, like a beginner, an unknown!

When he brought them business, when he was young, they were glad to see him.  But now his old friends, the old buyers that loved him so and always found some order to hand him in a pinch – they’re all dead, retired.

He used to be able to make six, seven calls a day in Boston.  Now he takes his valises out of the car and puts them back and takes them out again and he’s exhausted.  Instead of walking, he talks now.  He drives seven hundred miles, and when he gets there no one knows him anymore, no one welcomes him…

How long can that go on?  How long?  You see what I’m sitting here waiting for?  And you tell me he has no character?  The man who never worked a day but for your benefit.  When does he get a medal for that?…

(After Willy Loman’s suicide, and old business friend speaks to the dead man’s sons:)

Nobody dast blame this man.  You don’t understand:  Willy was a salesman.  And for a salesman, there is no rock bottom to the life.  He don’t put a bolt to a nut, he don’t tell you the law or give you medicine.  He’s a man way out there in the blue riding on a smile and a shoestring.  And when they start not smiling back – that’s an earthquake.  And then you get yourself a couple of spots on your hat, and you’re finished.  Nobody dast blame this man.

A salesman is got to dream, boy.  It comes with the territory.

(Arthur Miller, from the Death of a Salesman)

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A powerful reminder of famous spoken words

“Much has been given to us, and much will rightfully be expected from us.  We have duties to others and duties to ourselves, and we can shirk neither.

We have become a great nation, forced by the fact of its greatness into relations with the other nations of the earth;  and we must behave as beseems a people with such responsibilities.  Toward all other nations, large and small, our attitude must be one of cordial and sincere friendship.

We must show not only in our words but in our deeds that we are earnestly desirous of securing their good will by acting toward them in a spirit of just and generous recognition of all their rights.

But justice and generosity in a nation, as in an individual, count most when shown not by weak but by the strong.  While ever careful to refrain from wronging others, we must be no less insistent that we are not wronged ourselves.

We wish peace; but we wish the peace of justice, the peace of righteousness.  We wish it because we think it is right and not because we are afraid.  No weak nation can have cause to fear us, and no strong power should ever be able to single us out as a subject for insolent aggression.”

(excerpt of Inaugural Address of Theodore Roosevelt, March 4, 1905)

Solomon Grundy

Solomon Grundy,

Born on Monday,

Christened on Tuesday,

Married on Wednesday,

Took ill on Thursday,

Worse on Friday,

Died on Saturday,

Buried on Sunday,

This is the end

Of Solomon Grundy

(author unknown)

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The wit of John F. Kennedy

On May 27, 1961  President Kennedy was quoted as saying:

“When we got into office, the thing that surprised me most was to find that things were just as bad as we’d been saying they were”.

On another note:

When asked by a little boy how he became a war hero:

“It was absolutely involuntary.  They sank my boat”.

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