Friday, March 13, 2015

Know News... or No News?

Thought for the day: To look at the paper is to raise a seashell to one's ear and to be overwhelmed by the roar of humanity.  [Alain de Botton]

[wikipedia]
Okay, I'll admit it. I'm a newspaper junkie. Matter of fact, it still bugs me a teensy bit that I had the darned measles when my elementary school class took a field trip to the massive Baltimore News Post building. While my classmates were watching and hearing that huge press in action, I was stuck at home, scratching like a monkey with fleas. Oh well. The newspaper folks made a nifty metal press of each of our names, and I still have that memento, anyway.

[morguefile]




Ever since I was a young girl, I've devoured newspapers, and somewhere along the line, I developed the habit of tearing out articles that pique my curiosity, something I continue to do to this day. In recent years, journalism has changed, almost to the point where I'm beginning to fear Mark Twain was right when he said, If you don't read the newspaper, you're uninformed. If you read the newspaper, you're misinformed. 

Still, it's a lifelong habit I'm not likely to change. Today, I'm gonna share four stories I've saved from the past year or so.



For most folks, no news is good news. For the press, good news is not news.  [Gloria Borger]

Not true. Some news is good. Or at least, it's entertaining...

[morguefile]
** Eating with a degree of dignity can be very difficult for people who suffer with severe tremors. The constant shaking makes self-feeding a challenge at home, and pretty much out of the question in public.

Until now.

Google... yes, THAT Google!... has developed a special spoon that can steady those tremors. Sounds like science fiction, doesn't it? But it isn't; it's technology at its finest. The technology used in Liftware spoons senses how a hand is shaking, and makes instant adjustments to keep the spoon balanced. Shaking is reduced by an amazing 76%.
[morguefile]

** Amsterdam has a rather unusual government-sponsored program aimed at alcoholics. The logic behind this program is to offer alcoholics a better option than sitting on a park bench drinking all day, so they're offered a job cleaning litter from the streets. And paid... in beer. Typically, their mornings start with two beers... then two more at lunchtime, and another one or two later in the day. Oh, they don't just get paid in booze. They also get half a packet of rolling tobacco, free lunch, and ten euros a day. (About $13.50) The program is so popular, there's a long waiting list of chronic alcoholics who are eager to join the beer-fueled cleaning teams. So what do you think? Is this is good idea?

[morguefile]
** In God we trust. Those words are proudly printed on our paper currency, and on some of our state's license tags and/or flags. So it should come as no surprise that the Pinellas County Sheriff's Office in Florida decided to have those words printed on their new carpet. A fine carpet it was, too. Forest green, with the sheriff's yellow badge on it, along with those sacred words. 'Cept for one thing. After being in place for a couple months, a sharp-eyed deputy (or at least sharper-eyed than the rest of the folks around there) noticed a slight misspelling. The rug said In Dog we trust. (Oops!)

[morguefile]


** Isn't the monarch butterfly gorgeous? Its wings remind me of delicate stained glass. Did you know their population has experienced an astounding 90% decline in recent years? Although the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service hasn't placed it on the endangered species list yet, the federal government has pledged 3.2 million dollars in an attempt to save this iconic North American beauty.  Some of the money will be spent on the restoration of natural habitats, including more than 750 schoolyard habitats and pollinator, and gardens, and the rest will go into a conservation fund that will provide grants to farmers and other landowners to conserve additional habitat.

Yeah, I'm pretty enamored with butterflies, especially since this one paused to poop on my head at the butterfly festival we attended last year. (Not really... he just stopped by to say hello.) 

But here's the thing. I learned at the butterfly festival there's something each of us in North America can do to help these beautiful creatures right in our own back yards. (Or front yards; I'm not picky.) Plant milkweed. Really. Monarchs lay their eggs on milkweed plants, which provide the nourishment developing larvae need. Because of development, and the widespread use of pesticides, milkweeds and other nectar sources are becoming increasingly scarce throughout North America. Less milkweed equals less monarchs. The simple act of planting milkweed can transform your yard into your very own monarch habitat and way station. (A fantastic project for kids and grandkids!) You can even get it certified, although I must admit, there's no guarantee that an official sign beside your garden will draw a larger number of butterflies. (shhhh... they can't READ!) However, it MIGHT inspire others to follow suit. Wanta make a difference? Here's your chance. For more information, please see this site and later, how about posting a picture of yourself with a monarch butterfly sitting atop YOUR head? (If they DO poop, it's so small, you'll hardly notice... and besides, it probably smells like flowers... )

Time to flutter off! The eye doctor awaits. Have a super weekend, y'all.

How about some other newspaper stuff to keep you entertained while I'm gone?















                           
                                      Until next time, take care of yourselves. And each other.

P.S. Are any of you having a problem posting Youtube videos? Up until a few weeks ago, I could do it easy-peasy, but now? Not. The video will embed on the draft, but NOT on the preview or published post. It just POOF! disappears. Any ideas? Thanks. Ciao!

82 comments:

  1. We buy only one newspaper a week; The Sunday Times (London). There is plenty to read throughout the week, the crosswords keep me busy, and the paper eventually gets used for fire lighting. The perfect newspaper.

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    1. We used to get two a day, until one of them went out of business. Now it's one-a-day, but if its price keeps going up, and its size keeps going down, I may have to consider switching to a weekend only kinda deal. Sounds like a good option.

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  2. That exact same thing has happened with several recent videos I've tried to post. I've had to post a link, instead of the actual video. I'm glad I'm not the only one!!

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    1. I'm glad I'm not the only one, too, but I wish we knew how to FIX it! (If I figure it out... slim chance... I'll let you know.)

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  3. Paid in beer?? Hey, I may be a lush but I'm not crazy. Pay me in cold hard CASH. I'll buy my own beer.....

    When I lived in San Angelo TX there was a monarch butterfly every autumn. Thousands of the would appear and it was a spectacular sight. I never knew about milkweed - and I never knew they laid eggs. That butterfly looks great in your hair. Amazing.

    I love the Barbershop Singers headline. They bring joy to the deaf......and undoubtedly agony to those who can hear......

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    1. I meant to say "there was a monarch butterfly MIGRATION every autumn".

      Makes me sound a little more rational, doesn't it??

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    2. HA! That's one way to look at it... the deaf were happy BECAUSE they couldn't hear the singing. (Actually, I like barbershop quartet music.)

      You always sound rational, cowboy.

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  4. I too am addicted to newspapers, and revel in quirky stories, headlines, misprints.
    Sadly at least part of my addiction is because I cannot, but cannot stand to actually see and hear what our leaders are saying. I need a bit of distance from them. Sometimes a galaxy seems distance enough.

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    1. Somehow, I'm not at all surprised that you're a fellow newspaper addict. :)

      HA! Good point. Reading about what some of those scoundrels are saying is less upsetting than seeing them say it themselves.

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  5. Love you newspaper snippets - somehow reading newspapers online is not quite the same, is it?

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    1. I have no interest in reading the paper online, but more and more content is now available online that isn't included in the print version. I don't like it, but I think it's only a matter of time before the paper version is a thing of the past.

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  6. Hi Susan - one newspaper a week for me and I have withdrawl symptoms if I don't get it ... The Saturday Times ... and my flat has a surfeit of interesting articles or notes if I made them - which I really need to clear up!!

    Love what you've written here .. and the Amsterdam idea - sounds a good one .. it helps clean up, and it might improve people's habits ... that wobbly sensitive spoon - sounds really interesting.

    Happy Friday 13th and the weekend .. cheers Hilary

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    1. I'm so used to having at least one newspaper a day, I don't know how I'd feel about only getting it once a week. I may find out, though.The price is getting ridiculously high, and the paper itself is getting skinnier and skinnier. Even the Sunday paper.

      Happy Friday the 13th to you, too. No superstitions here...knock on wood...

      Cheers!

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  7. It was all interesting...very very interesting...then my eyes caught the little advert about hunters and grocery store meat.....I fell off my chair laughing.

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    1. Oh no! Better start wearing a seatbelt when you're at the computer...:)

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  8. I love the newspaper, especially the comics. The Dallas Morning News has been getting thicker - they've truly added more news (or misinformation). It all seems more official on real paper too. Have a good weekend!

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    1. I'm impressed that your paper is getting thicker.I wish ours were, too. If it gets any thinner, it'll be a flyer.

      Funny, but I only read about half of the comics. The others? Meh. I don't even "get" some of them.

      You have a super weekend, too!

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  9. Yeah the one about buying your meat in a store where 'no animals were harmed' is priceless. Technically, of course, it's true. No animals were harmed - in the store. The harming took place elsewhere so I guess that makes it ok in the eyes of that idiot. Ay yay!

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    1. Yeah, that one is kinda priceless. And I reckon some people really ARE that clueless.

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  10. Newspapers used to weigh more than they do today. They are thinning out or disappearing altogether because of the competition with the Internet. What will the next generation do when they need to wrap a fish (or crab shells) as an iPad just won't hold the odor.

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    1. You're absolutely right about the newspaper losing a bunch of weight. Even our Sunday paper. It's more ads than anything. Sad.

      I don't have an iPad, but we DID eat steamed crabs for dinner tonight. Only newspapers will do...

      Happy weekend!

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  11. Newspapers aren't long for this world I don't think. Unless the internet goes kaput. Hey, trusting dogs isn't such a bad thing lol

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    1. I hope you're wrong about newspapers going the way of the dinosaurs, but I think you're probably right. Darn it.

      Yeah, most dogs are pretty darned trustworthy, :)

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  12. I also love reading the newspaper but i think it will all be online soon. When our generation dies out our (great ?) grandchildren will be (unfortunately) reading everything on line.
    I have lots of rosemary planted especially for the native Arizona Bees and of course Citrus trees for all the bees. Our bees are dying out.
    Must look and see if we have milkweed here in Arizona. for the butterflies.
    I must admit last years Tucson had masses of butterflies the most I have ever seen.

    cheers, parsnip

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    1. Heck, our great great grandchildren may be able to download the news directly into their brains from a computer connection.

      We have rosemary in our yard, too, but I didn't realize it's good for bees.I just planted herbs for cooking, but if they're beneficial for bees, all that much better.

      Tucson must be doing something right if your butterfly population was larger than usual last year.:)

      Cheers back atcha.

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  13. I have definitely noticed a paucity of milkweed and monarchs since this area of prairie has undergone development over the past 20 years. We have planted lots of lavender and got our bees back, so maybe it's time for a new planting project. Thanks for the alert!

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    1. Yes, time to plant milkweed! (And you're just the dude to do it.)

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  14. Why am I not surprised you love newspapers? I read mine with breakfast every morning.

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    1. Years ago, we got the morning paper, which I read with breakfast, and the evening paper, which I read after dinner. Heaven! Then the evening paper folded. (And not in good way...) With only one paper now, which comes in the morning, I don't have a set time to read it. Just whenever I have time to enjoy it.

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  15. Another newspaper addict here. One is delivered every morning - the local paper. I pick one up every day - a national paper - and then there's the twice-weekly reeeeally local paper. I read them all. When I travel I buy the local rag for the pleasure of learning what's important to the locals.
    One thing about our local newspaper is the predictability. Every spring - a front page photo of a pretty little girl in a field of daffodils - every winter a front page spread on the lights along the main streets - every summer a big spread when the flower baskets go up and another big one when they come down (along with many letters to the editor bemoaning the disappearance of the baskets). It's reassuring!

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    1. All right! I love that you're addicted, too. Neat that you have so many different papers around to feed that addiction. :)

      Those kinds of local papers are a joy. For many years after we moved to Georgia, we still subscribed to the folksy local paper from our old hometown in Maryland. Our town here has nothing like it. Unfortunately.

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  16. Funny stuff.

    Milkweed. I love butterflies. I will look into this plant for my yard!!!!

    I just posted a HERE'S TO YOU (something for you there:) and the videos embedded no problem. Try again?

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    1. Thanks. I'm glad ya liked it.

      Great! Let me know if you plant that milkweed.

      Cool.I'll come check it out right now. I've tried multiple times over the past month or so. So far, no good. I'll keep trying, though.

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  17. Another newspaper fan here - we get our local newspaper seven days a week. I glance at a few online newspapers occasionally and wish I had more time to keep up with a few German newspapers.

    The spoon to help with tremors is interesting. I have two friends with Parkinson's - they probably would benefit from it. I wonder if the technology is the same as the image stabilization technology in cameras. Off to Google...

    That butterfly looks lovely on you. Doesn't it mean good luck if one lands on you and stays for a while? I'll have to look into planting milkweed. Our town has a big project going on, planting it in medians and parks.

    Happy weekend...and don't forget, tomorrow is pie day. Well, Pi Day. As in 3.14. But I'll still eat pie.

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    1. Woo HOO! Lots of newspaper fans here! Good to know. I occasionally read online newspaper articles, but I can't imagine relying completely on an online version of the newspaper, can you?

      That spoon is called a Liftware spoon. I hope it turns out to be a help for your friends.:)

      I dunno. I felt pretty darned lucky that the butterfly hopped on, so maybe it IS lucky. When Smarticus was in Vietnam, his parents and I went to D.C.for the day. A butterfly landed on my shoulder as we were ready to head home, and he stayed with me all the way back to Baltimore!

      Happy weekend! Pi day sounds like a perfect excuse to eat pie.

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  18. Once I too used to peruse the newspaper and cut out items I thought may be of interest to future family generations. Recently I found the srapbook, checked it out and decided to ditch it. I doubt anyone would be all that interested of things past now they have the internet.
    I do read our local newspaper to see what has been and is happening locally as I feel that is important, especially to we oldies.
    I loved the four items you chose to show and the In God We Trust always reminds me of signs you sometimes see in shops "IN GOOD WE TRUST, ALL OTHERS CASH."
    We have those butterflies in Australia too and they are really beautiful but not sure if they are currently an endangered species. Must check on that.
    All the other snippets were most enjoyable and it's great to laugh so thank you for sharing them.

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    1. P.S. I remember years ago visiting the butterfly house at our Perth Zoo and the wonder I felt when various butterflies landed on my shoulder arm or head. They are such a delight.

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    2. I love that you kept a scrapbook of articles. I was never that organized. Mostly, I only held onto them long enough to either write about them, or to use them as a jumping-off point to explore the topic further. I'm kinda glad I didn't make a scrapbook out of them, though, because I don't know if I'd be able to part with it. Somehow, putting them into that format would elevate them to a "treasure" in my mind, and then my natural pack rat tendencies would take over.

      Really? I'm surprised. From all I'd read, I thought monarch butterflies were only found in North America. Cool! I'm glad you have them there, too. Yes, it is really a thrill when a butterfly lands on us. It feels like a blessing.

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  19. Maybe I'm different? I read our locals daily online!

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    1. Maybe you're different, or maybe you're just younger. I think people who used computers during their childhoods are much more likely to be comfortable with reading newspapers and magazines online. (Or maybe you're simply more "with-it" than I am.)

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  20. I love butterflies too, Susan. I hope we can save the monarch butterflies. We have an early spring and I can't wait to see the butterflies.
    Last year we visited a museum in Milwaukee that has a place like the one you show there. A warm place with lots of butterflies. It was fascinating and inspiring...

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    1. I hope we can save the monarchs, too. At least the government is taking some steps to undo the harm we've already done to their natural habitats.

      Yes, inspiring. Good way to describe a place filled with colorful butterflies.:)

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  21. I used to find and cut out interesting things from my grandpa's newspapers when I was a kid. Later, I developed a very big dislike holding those grey papers. I think it started when sort of crime pictures were printed with the news, I always had the feeling of throwing up. Though I was seeing them in black & white but I know there was blood involved-it just upsets my stomach even up to now. Then I started reading from the internet every morning which eventually spoiled my mood all the time, so I stopped again. I am now uninformed yes but I am feeling fine. Big news still reaches me anyhow :)

    That's a great idea about helping preserve the monarch butterflies.

    My you tube uploads work somehow fine but I couldn't upload my own videos. Sorry I can't help you solve your recent trouble.

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    1. I must admit: some articles bring tears to my eyes, but I still can't break the habit. I can see the benefit, however, to being blithely unaware of some of the horrible things going on in the world. Like the expression says, ignorance is bliss, but for me, not knowing would be maddening.

      I'm glad your youtube uploads are working okay.Hopefully, the problem some of us are having is just a temporary glitch.

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  22. I'm still laughing at that headline about Republicans and Obama. I am a newspaper and magazine junkie. :-)

    Greetings from London.

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    1. That's a good one, isn't it? (Probably true, too! HA!)

      Greetings back atcha.

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  23. I also tried to post a video a few weeks ago, and had no luck. All of the ads were funny, but the meat ad was my all time favorite! I still can't get over how the butterfly calmly landed on your head. I'm sure it would've been stuck for good in my hair! Hope your eye exam went well, Susan.

    Julie

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    1. Uh-oh. Sorry you're having trouble with videos, too, but it's comforting to know I'm not the only one "afflicted" with this problem. Let's hope it's short-lived.

      I know.I'm still tickled about that butterfly.

      Eye exam went okay. The pressure is down some, but still too high. If it doesn't fall into normal levels by my next visit, the doc will add another kinda drop to the regimen.

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  24. Trouble with you tube videos? Uh-Oh. I am about to schedule my Musical Monday post.
    That hunters killing animals for meat clipping was in our papers here in Australia too, I remember cutting it out years ago, but can't find it now and actually forgot about it until reading it here today.
    With your permission I'll borrow that for one of my Whimsical Wednesdays.

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    1. Hopefully, you won't have a problem with your video loading. It seems like only a few of us here are having trouble with it, so let's hope you'll be just fine.

      Sure! Help yourself. You're always welcome to borrow anything you find here.

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  25. I posted a HERE'S TO YOU on Friday. There's something there for ya:)

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    1. Yea, ma'am. You sure did, and I already visited on Friday and left a comment thanking you. I'm sure those posts take you a lot of time to put together. Thanks again!

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  26. I love butterflies too. Those newspaper clips are just too funny to be true, surely!?! When you say 'eye doctor' do you mean the optician? Hope the appointment went well.

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    1. Too funny to be true? You should see some of the ones I DIDN'T use!

      No, not an optician, an ophthamologist. For glaucoma. The pressure went down a little since my last visit, so that's pretty good. :)

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  27. Ah, love those headlines! Recently, a local PA paper mentioned in its weather report that it was almost as cold as when Luke Skywalker sliced open his Tauntaun for warmth. And of course they were overrun with complaints from Star Wars fans pointing out their grievous error: Han Solo sliced open the Tauntaun. Luke was unconscious.

    Not as bad as some of those gaffes shown above, but please, where were their fact-checkers? :D

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    1. You've gotta feel a little sorry for the writer who made that Star Wars faux pas. Poor guy was probably just trying to come across as cool. He bombed big-time.

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  28. Loving all the headlines!

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  29. Susan I used to read the paper everyday for 15 years.. then I had Valentina and worked... now I read a little of it on line when I can.

    I'm going to have to try out the milkweed to see if I can get butterflies here... that would be cool, I love them.♡

    Wow to some of those newspaper headlines... those are ridiculously funny... what were some of those writers thinking... lol

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    1. Great! I hope you attract a bunch of monarchs. :)

      Somehow, I don't think some of those writers WERE thinking.

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  30. Sorry you missed the field trip, really sucks when you're a kid. This was wonderful - too funny! I've loved reading the paper for years but just recently cancelled it - they made so many formatting changes I couldn't even find the news! I used to devour them from cover to cover too, such a shame. Your exampes were priceless! I have a butterfly bush does that count? Milkweed, hmmm, will consider it. I love the butterflys and the hummingbirds, and guess what it's almost time for them all to return. Can't wait - winter is/was a long one! I like the story of the spoon though, I used to serve a man who came in once a week to the restaurant I worked at, when he finished dinner the site was a mess. We all felt to bad for him, but he was a shameless flirt, said he only came into see all of us. Sweet, sweet man, but terrible, terrible tremors.

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    1. I can understand cancelling your subscription. I haven't had any problems with formatting changes, but I can't help but notice that in spite of its escalating cost, the only thing going up in the paper's content is the number of ads. The only saving grace so far is we've been able to negotiate excellent renewal deals. If they stop offering us those substantial savings... I dunno. We'll have to see.

      Butterfly bushes are good for attracting butterflies in general, so that definitely counts, but monarchs require milkweed in particular to nourish their larvae.

      On top of being a sweet sweet man with terrible terrible tremors, he must have also been a very self-confident man to have continued to eat in public. Good for him. :)

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  31. I would LOVE to get paid in beer (surprise surprise, right?). I mean, I currently blog for free. In fact, I actually buy beer in order to blog (also... surprise surprise, right?) so I'm losing money on this whole thing. Now... if only I could find someone to pay me in beer to blog.

    Oh, and YouTube's been working just fine for us. Have you tried hitting it with a hammer?

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    1. HA! I think there's quite a few guys who wouldn't mind getting paid in beer. (Then again, maybe they pay with something like, I dunno... Schlitz...)

      No, haven't tried applying a hammer yet, but it's a thought.

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  32. Your Yamminess! Love those clippings! I read them every day too. Old habits and all that.

    Thanks for the Monarch flutterby info. There used to be clouds of them in late Summer here. Last year I didn't see a single one. We must plant milkweed! x

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    1. Austan!!! Good to hear from you again.

      Yes, yes, plant that milkweed... and then send me a pic of you with all those monarchs. XO

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  33. We don't even get a newspaper any more. We get most of our news off the internet with just a little coming from local TV or radio.

    Great clippings and headlines! Fun post. :)

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    1. No newspaper at all? I'd have withdrawal symptoms, but I have a feeling print newspapers may go the way of the dinosaurs, so eventually, I won't have much choice. (Hey! You're a trend-setter!)

      Thanks! I'm glad you liked 'em.

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  34. Funny clippings. I haven't bought the newspaper in ages, but I sort of miss it, especially the Sunday edition. It would keep me busy all Sunday morning. Now I do chores and run errands instead. I didn't know about milkweed. I saw it at a nursery once and thought about getting it. I'll buy it the next time I see it.

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    1. If you haven't read the Sunday newspaper in ages, you might not recognize it. Let's just say it isn't a jumbo-sized paper it used to be.

      Great! I hope your milkweed attracts lots of monarchs.

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  35. Hahaha! Love those headlines. I also like, 'Missippi's literacy program shows improvement' and 'Woman in sumo wrestler suit assaulted her ex girlfriend in a gay pub after she waved at a man dressed as a snickers bar.' You just couldn't make this stuff up.

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    1. HA! I've seen the one on Mississippi literacy improving, but the one about the gal in a sumo suit is new on me. Truth really can be funnier than fiction. :)

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  36. Hope your visit to the eye doctor was uneventful. I love butterflies, too. We have several butterfly friendly plants in our yard and are wonderfully rewarded. I don't think we have milkweed, though.

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    1. Thanks. It was okay. Pressure's still too high, but the drops have started to bring it down a little bit, anyway.

      There's lot of butterfly-friendly plants, and they're really pretty too, aren't they? Milkweed is the only place monarchs will lay their eggs, though.

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  37. Love the headlines. Hysterical! I don't read newspapers anymore, not by choice, but because my apartment is so tiny, I have no place to recycle. I get all my news from the TV and the internet. Internet headlines are often even more outrageous than print, but they're so easy to correct, I think it's because editors don't pay as much attention. Good luck with the eye guy!

    VR Barkowski

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    1. I understand what you mean about space. I've got so many magazines, I stopped all subscriptions to them. What I have is neatly organized for "future reference"... Riiiiiight. As if I'll ever open one of them again... Maybe it's time to recycle some of them, too. (sigh)

      Thanks. It's a eye gal. :) She's really cool, and I'm sure she'll get my eye pressure behaving properly before too long.

      I hope YOU are healing well after your run-in with the ice.

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  38. bahaha on the math headline at the end. :) I didn't know the numbers were diminishing like that for the Monarchs. I can plant Milkweed. :)

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    1. I like that math one, too.

      Cool! I hope your garden attracts a bunch of monarchs. :)

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  39. I love newspaper blunders.

    Last summer I put in a bee & butterfly garden. The bee population also in serious decline. It was most made up of wildflowers - I got the names of some good choices online - and very easy to care for, and I got of bees and butterflies, including some kinds I'd never seen before. I'm going to enlarge the garden this year.

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    1. Me, too!

      Super. How about posting some pics of your expanded garden on your blog this summer?

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