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an occasional newsletter of the Nanty Glo Home Page                           January 30 2001
 

Pilgrims'progress

After a full week of daily posting, the new Jonal seems off to a great start. Several observations.

I didn't mean, when I named the daily-journal-part of the Jonal "Postcards from the Nanty Glo in my Mind" that it be taken in the sense that these thoughts are things that are only in "my" mind...but that works, too, as in the case of statements I made yesterday that proved totally false and that George Warholic well corrected. I was thinking of the Nanty Glo in my mind in a more wistful, romantic-literary sense.

George's correction of the "facts" as I (mis)represented them is must-read for anyone who cares about Cambria County economics and hasn't yet read it. It will be found here.

I also didn't mean for these journal entries to be mostly nostalgic remembrances of times past. I'm not much into living in the past, but when we get together here the past seems to be the thing we have most in common, so I guess it's understandable. And always, remembrances of the past can inform and give new light to paths to the future. Those who don't learn from history are destined to repeat its mistakes...yada yada.

I'm pleased with the formatted newsletter approach we've been taking and am surprised, myself, how much can be done with it. So it will continue to be developed. Today's innovation begins an attempt to have both a joke and an inspirational item on each post. And please, if you have a joke (of PG rating or higher only, please) or a favorite inspirational story, saying, verse, and so on, by all means share them with the list (preferably to me in a private post first, so it can be formatted into part of the newsletter before everyone receives it). Keep an eye out for things we can share, please.

The lesson learned in this first week of publishing has be to keep it simple, short and sweet. So today it's a little maintenance. Tomorrow, unless something better comes along, I may return to the economic discussion.

Must have been a bigger brother
A fellow gets home early from work and hears strange noises coming from the bedroom. He rushes upstairs to find his wife naked on the bed, sweating and panting. "What's going on?" he asks. "I'm having a heart attack," cries the woman. He rushes downstairs to grab the phone, but just as he's dialing, his 4-year-old son comes up and says, "Daddy! Daddy! Uncle Ted's hiding in your closet and he's got no clothes on!" The guy slams the phone down and storms upstairs into the bedroom, past his screaming wife, and rips open the wardrobe door. Sure enough, there's his brother, totally naked, cowering on the closet floor. "I can't believe it!" says the husband. "My wife's having a heart attack, and all you can do is run around the house naked scaring the kids?"

Sent by Bob Kennedy

THE ROSE (author unknown)

The first day of school our professor introduced himself and challenged us to get to know someone we didn't already know. I stood up to look around when a gentle hand touched my shoulder. I turned around to find a wrinkled, little old lady beaming up at me with a smile that lit up her entire being. She said, "Hi, handsome! My name is Rose. I'm eighty-seven years old... Can I give you a hug?"

I laughed and enthusiastically responded, "Of course you may!" and she gave me a giant squeeze. "Why are you in college at such a young, innocent age?" I asked. She jokingly replied, "I'm here to meet a rich husband, get married, have a couple of children, then retire and travel."

"No, seriously," I asked. I was curious what may have motivated her to be taking on this challenge at her age.

"I always dreamed of having a college education and now I'm earning one!" she told me. After class, we walked to the student union building and shared a chocolate milkshake. We became instant friends. Every day for the next three months we would leave class together and talk nonstop. I was always mesmerized listening to this "time machine" as she shared her wisdom and experience with me.

Over the course of the year, Rose became a campus icon and easily made friends wherever she went. She reveled in the attention bestowed upon her from the other students. She was really "living it up."

At the end of the semester, we invited Rose to speak at our football banquet; I'll never forget what she taught us. She was introduced and stepped up to the podium. As she began to deliver her prepared speech, she dropped her three-by-five cards on the floor. Frustrated and a little embarrassed, Rose leaned into the microphone and simply said, "I'm sorry I'm so jittery. I gave up beer for Lent and this whiskey is killing me! I'll never get my speech back in order so let me just tell you what I know...."

As we laughed, she cleared her throat and began. "We do not stop playing because we are old; we grow old because we stop playing. There are only four secrets to staying young, being happy, and achieving success: "You have to laugh and find humor every day. You've got to have a dream... When you lose your dreams, you die. We have so many people walking around who are dead and don't even know it! There is a huge difference between growing older and growing up. If you are nineteen years old and lie in bed for one full year and don't do one productive thing, you will turn twenty years old. If I am eighty seven years old and stay in bed for a year and never do anything, I will turn eighty eight. Anybody can grow older. That doesn't take any talent or ability. The idea is to grow up by always finding the opportunity in change.

"Have no regrets. The elderly usually don't have regrets for what we did, but rather for things we did not do. The only people who fear death are those with regrets." She concluded her speech by courageously singing "The Rose." She challenged each of us to study the lyrics and live them out in our daily lives. At year's end, Rose finished the college degree she had begun all those years ago. One week after graduation, Rose died peacefully in her sleep. Over two thousand college students attended her funeral in tribute to the wonderful woman who taught by example that it's never too late to be all you're meant to be!

So get going!

Sent by Jeff Bay

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