George Rucker's December 20th, 2016 Newsletter

Hey this fine Tuesday (Swedish for Hello),

My grandmother who spoke sort of broken English would always tell me “Hay is for horses and C is for cows.”  So I used the greeting very little during my younger years.

On TV news last Wednesday they said that Clinton won the “Bellwether” states, and that Trump won all the rest.  First I did not think bellwether was spelt like that and always tied weather with prediction.  This is not a joke yet I found it funny so I am passing it on.  This is from Miriam Webster so I am not making it up.

: one that takes the lead or initiative : Leader; also : an indicator of trends

Here are some examples.  She is a bellwether of fashion.  High-tech bellwethers led the decline in the stock market.  This county is a bellwether in national elections.

However did you know?

We usually think of sheep more as followers than leaders, but in a flock one sheep must lead the way. Long ago, it was common practice for shepherds to hang a bell around the neck of one sheep in their flock, thereby designating it the lead sheep. This animal was called the bellwether, a word formed by a combination of the Middle English words belle (meaning "bell") and wether (a noun that refers to a male sheep that has been castrated). It eventually followed that bellwether would come to refer to someone who takes initiative or who actively establishes a trend that is taken up by others. This usage first appeared in English in the 13th century.


In my last letter I made mention of Genetic Modified Organisms (GMO), or transgenics.  I truly did not like what I read.  Genetic Engineered foods have quite a foothold in our food supply and it is difficult to find food without a GMO component.  Transgenics is taking two or more DNA strands and creating a new altered one.  It is sort of a shortcut from the old way that worked for centuries of plant grafting to make a hybrid third type of plant.  Sometimes it was not grafting but just using pollination of one plant with another.   GMOs require blasting apart a cell and inserting the DNA from another species.  Guess what some of the species are?  Humans, spiders, bacteria, and other stuff.

I think the 1973 movie “Soylent Green “ has come to be a forecast of things to come on earths voyage through the stars.  The last line in the movie is “Soylent Green is people.”

Did we not learn anything from the problem with Mad Cow’s Disease in Europe.  Well it certainly did as 64 countries now require GMOs to be on the outside of every package of food that contains it.  Currently more countries are being added to the list, to either ban it entirely or require food to have a bold label if it contains any GMOs.

Back to the Mad Cow Disease, it has not been in the news for years so some of this is from memory, and at 75 years old it is not as sharp as when I was young.  I remember cattle farmers used sort of a plastic sponge, that would be able to absorb rendered parts of possible infected sheep or cows.  At least stuff that could not be sold on the market.  This would be fed to cattle to supplement protein intake.  Yes, cattle are grazing creatures, but their diets may be supplemented with protein from another animal source.   Cattle don't immediately get sick from eating the prions.  It can take months or years for Mad Cow Disease to develop.  Simply put, prions are proteins that can cause the disease.  Feeding the nerve tissue (e.g., brain) and various ground meat products and by-products that happened to carry the infectious agents.   Once eaten these plastic like sponges would be cleaned from the cow waste (poop) and recycled with more of these byproducts and  fed back to the cows.  . . Thank God that process has been discontinued.  It seemed that people were becoming affected with mental disorders along with some of the cows or it probably would still be in use today due to the money if saved the farmers in providing food for these poor animals.

What I am saying is certain foods are not meant to be eaten.  If rice with the human gene currently utilized by some pharmaceutical companies happens to get into our food supply,.  I think it very scary.

Corn that needs no pesticides due to the pesticides being it’s DNA and bugs just leave it alone, I also think scary.  I wash my corn before eating but how does one wash the inside of the cells or corn.

Tomatoes with spider DNA can tolerate colder temperatures again I find scary.  I say just grow it where the temperature is tolerated like the old days.

I find we have been doing this DNA manipulation to our food for about 20 years now.  They say it is fine.  I say bull shit.

Our countries longevity has dropped for the first time in 22 years  for the entire population, not just certain groups.

Women can still expect to live longer than men -- 81.2 years vs. 76.3 years -- but both of those estimates were lower in 2015 than they were in 2014.

Looking for a cloud in this premature death rate, the old saying of location, location, location comes to mind.  I could not find any great spots to move to live longer.  Perhaps Hawaii but they are just one of the slightly lower areas.  I see a small spot of white in Alaska center but most of Alaska has the worst rates.  My area of Massachusetts is also not a horrible area but still the same color as Hawaii.  If I squint at the map to combine colors the lower third of the country is the worst.  Those are the places I go  for the vacations.  Bummer.

Drug overdose could be a reason as they seem to be mostly the young people and would skew the rate but they do not have the same map density for deaths and I notice that both Hawaii and Massachusetts are in the highest color areas which is 18+ deaths per 100,000 people.

They are looking at insufficient sleep as a reason and again Hawaii and Mass are in the bad areas as 36% to 47% don’t get enough sleep.  I get plenty of rest and will take a nap to energize frequently.  I do not think sleep is the issue.

They also looked at the black/white segregation but again Hawaii and Mass are in the highest group 58% to 91%.  I think they are grasping at straws to need to put together this sort of map but I do notice that they are more or less the Democratic states with the mid west being the least segregated or under 3%

I think sooner or later they will come around to looking closely at GMO food additives as it is common to all areas.  I know I already think we should look much more closely.


When NASA started sending astronauts into space they quickly discovered that ball-point pens would not work in zero gravity.

To combat this problem, Congress approved a program and NASA scientists spent a decade and over $165 million developing a pen that writes in zero gravity, upside down, on almost any surface and at 20 below zero temperature .

The Russians used a pencil…

Your taxes are due again on April 15, 2017.



    Who says building a border wall won't work?

    The Chinese built one over 2,000 years ago and they still don't have any Mexicans.


I happen to use PC Pitstop for my computers.  It pretty much does everything for me on auto pilot.  Lately Microsoft has been trying to get me to use their Malware program.  I have not given in and now I find that the Microsoft Malware program is four years old.  Sorry Microsoft but PC Pitstop almost constantly updates with every problem discovered.  Myself since using Pitstop I have had no software problems for over a year and my only problems have been with the equipment or Hardware.

PC Pitstop partnered with AV Comparatives to create a comprehensive and superior detection rate test that hopefully will focus purchase decisions on detection rates. The test overcomes many of the flaws of prior public tests.

The test is involuntary, that is no participant was aware when the test was being performed. Products were downloaded from each of the web sites, and run in default mode. The current model between the testers and the testee is financial. The testee pay the testers and submit their products.

Since it is involuntary, the test can be comprehensive permitting the public test results for both Malwarebytes and Webroot.

A criticism of AV testing are the small sample sizes. AV Test and AV Comparatives typically employ samples sizes measured in the hundreds which is a contrast to the Virus Bulletin, which has sample sizes in the tens of thousands. This test bridged the gap with a sample size of 5000. None of the samples were known to Virus Total at the time of the test. No vendor, including PC Pitstop, provided samples for the test.

The samples were categorized into ransomware and non-ransomware samples. In addition to the first comprehensive test, this is one of the first tests to analyze ransomware detection rates.

The tests were run “On Execute” with the internet connection enabled. Each sample was run through a script and executed, and then analyzed to see if the AV product in question was able to properly detect the sample.

This is the first of many tests that we plan to develop to further the discussion of detection rates in the security industry. The MPG rating is certainly not perfect, but the world is better off for having it. In fact, another automotive acronym is YMMV (Your Mileage May Vary). Our new test is not perfect, but it is ground breaking in many ways, and we believe that it will force the industry to improve detection rates to thwart the threat of ransomware. We’re planning to do more involuntary tests with AV Comparatives, if you’d like to stay up to date when new results are released click here to sign up for our newsletter.

Sorry for the advertisement above but it is one program I truly believe in.


I guess I am lucky to have had so many adventures in my life.  I have gnawed on sugar cane fresh cut from the field.  It is a rather nice treat but I do say that I do not like the smell of the milling process but during my life have smelled many types of mills.  I must say every one of them has smelt bad.  Meat, paper, leather, good god leather is one of the worst, and then there sugar which also makes molasses a form of less refined sugar and probably the reason for its smell.  Most of these smells can carry in the air for over 10 miles and never is  a good neighbor.  Want to know what brings this topic up   Well Hawaii’s last sugar mill just wraps up its final harvest this December.

PUUNENE, MAUI (HawaiiNewsNow) -

Hawaii's only remaining sugar mill wrapped up its final harvest Monday with one last cane haul.

Hundreds of workers, retirees, and community members watched the delivery during a commemoration event at Hawaiian Commercial & Sugar Company's Puunene factory. With operations winding down, many workers are unsure what they'll do next.

"You do this all your life, then you gotta figure out something else to do," said Robert Luuwai, vice president of factory operations.

Alexander & Baldwin, the parent company for HC&S, announced in January that it would phase out sugar production this year, after reporting a roughly $30 million agribusiness operating loss in 2015.

"Hawaii produced over a million tons of sugar per year for over 50 years. At one time that was 20% of all the sugar that was consumed in the United States," said Robert Osgood, a retired consultant for the Hawaii Agriculture Research Center and co-author of "From King Cane to the Last Sugar Mill."

"We had a very good run. We were struggling for many years, but the heart of the people made it last long," said Luuwai.


We had a very funny text the other day.  My daughter-in-law was talking to someone about the location of our house as they live in the same area.

“Oh, I know the house.  It is the singing house!

We have a karaoke machine and my wife sings a lot.  During the summer months or when the air conditioner is off, we keep the windows open.  I usually ask her if she wants the air on and the windows closed.

Her response is usually, “Oh nobody can hear me.”

What do I say . . . “Ah Ha.”


Every once in a while I will mention Ben There, my Massive Multi Player Online Game avatar, I have played with the same name in about six games now, but few know  I also have another avatar with the name of Don That.  It is a name I rarely use but keep around as sort of a place holder.  I primarily keep it as a spare banker just to hold items of value in the game.

Well anyway the other day the largest online battles took place and it never hit the news.  On December 13, after a one month long siege, a death star was defeated on the final weekend.  During the battle 5,700 players from around the world gathered to destroy a Keepstar citadel, a tremendously expensive player-built defensive position that was introduced during an April update.

I am not sure I would want to participate in a battle that could take thirty days.  I have been in a few that took about 10 hours and felt that was overboard and had to break away for a bathroom break and some food.  During a long quest like that it is usually my son and his friends that save the day.  Most dungeons take less than two hours.

I think the longest dungeon Patty and I together have completed was only perhaps four hours, most much shorter.


Well it is time for me to find another invention that changed mankind for the better.  A few weeks back I talked about the telegraph.  Well for the telegraph to have worked we need a code to transmit.  This weeks invention will be Morse Code and by the way used in my first adult job as a Navy Radioman (age 17 to 21).  I still at times will change text into Morse code in my mind at 75.  I could never get much past 30 words per minute but worked with a First Class Petty Officer who get into the mid 40s.  He also used a Stirling silver speed key and a mink elbow pad.

Disguised in a language of dots and dashes, Morse code helps people communicate instantly over a telegraph.

There are too many instances to count of Morse code relaying vital information.  For instance, the only surviving accounts of the sinking of the Titanic in 1912 are the Morse code transcripts sent out by the doomed crew.  In 1966 Admiral Jeremiah Denton, a POW in Hanoi was able to blink in Morse code during a television interview to alert American authorities that the North Vietnamese were torturing American captives.  In 1973, during a war games exercise, the navy destroyer USS Wood lost power and became stranded in shipping lanes.  Without any other means of communication, the ship’s crew used battery-powered lanterns to flash Morse code and alert a nearby Russian destroyer of the Wood’s position.

When communicating by Morse code, the sender and receiver follow an international standard in order to decipher a message named after the inventor, Samuel Morse.  The short signals are called “dits” (represented by dots) and long signals are called “dahs” (represented by dashes).  Dits and dahs are used in a pattern that represents a specific letter.  For example, the most well-known usage of Morse code, SOS, is three dits (S), followed by three dahs (O), and followed by three more dits (S).  The code requires user to allow a standard of time to elapse between each letter, so the message comes across clearly and accurately.

Today Morse code is no longer used by any major organization, as other technology that replaced the once-critical method of communication.  The Federal Communication Commission dropped the Morse code requirement for ham radio operators in 2006, and even Coast Guard has stopped listening for SOS signals at sea.  However, some enthusiasts hope to keep the system relevant.

Although no practical uses may exist, Morse code still has the potential to emerge as effective communication in unanticipated ways, due to the fact that anything can be used to tap out a message, using telegraph and flashlight, or through finger taps or blinking.

Paul Saffo, a fellow for the Institute of the Future, explains to the New York Times how he will keep the code alive:

“Morse will now become the object of loving passion by radio heads, much as another ‘dead’ language, Latin, is kept alive today by Latin-speaking enthusiasts around the world.”


Eric says:

My youngest is being tested for the gifted program at his elementary school and my other son thinks his toothbrush is haunted.


From someone with a good sense of humor:

Me: Play dead
My dog: Drives to my office and starts doing my job


From Mark:

The problem with teaching a man to fish is that eventually somebody will microwave that fish in the work break room.


Famous Misquotations . . .
“The ends justify the means.”

Machiavelli never said this.  What he actually said is, “One must consider the final result,” which isn’t as eloquent but still just kind of common sense.


A few days after the presidential election Patty was assessing Hillary’s popular vote win.  She jokingly referred to Hillary as the “President of California.”  As she watched the vote totals climb, she wondered why, “our fair and balanced press” didn’t point out that Hillary’s lead was dominated by only one state – California.  Trump did not campaign in California.

Finally the vote totals were posted in the NY Times for the popular vote.  California is as follows : Clinton 8,753,788
               Trump 4,483,810

  Clinton won by 4,269,978          (1.2 million in Los Angeles alone!!

Here are totals for the other 49 states:
              Trump 58,474,401
              Clinton 57,064,530

   Trump won by 1,409,871

When you add California to the other 49 states Clinton wins the popular vote by 2.8 million.

So if you are still questioning the “legitimacy” of the election, review the following as well;

Number of States won: Trump 30, Clinton 20

Number of electoral votes: Trump 306, Clinton 232

Average margin of victory in winning states: Trump 56.7%, Clinton 53.6%

The electoral college ensures that a popular regional candidate in a populous state not dominate the national election.  It allows all states and regions to be represented

This year’s election demonstrates the genius of the nation’s founders.

So as the electors met yesterday, imagine for a moment that these numbers were reversed and the republicans were calling for the electors to change their votes. I am guessing the press would be calling Trump “a poor loser.”  They would say he was undermining the “will” of the American people and calling into question our electoral process.

What I found funny is that Clinton lost 4 votes of her 12 from the state of Washington.  3 went to Retired General Colin Powell and one for Faith Spotted Eagle a Native American who has been protesting the pipeline.


 child asked his father, "How were people born?"

So his father said, "Adam and Eve made babies, then their babies became adults and made babies, and so on."

The child then went to his mother, asked her the same question and she told him, "We were monkeys then we evolved to become like we are now."

The child ran back to his father and said, "You lied to me!"

His father replied, "No, your mom was talking about her side of the family."


Well here we are almost at the end of the 9th page.  My letter is finished.  I will see some of you at exercise later in the morning.  Smile.


For a copy email with Letter in the subject line.

To be removed, same email with remove letter in the subject line.

Older letters can be found on towards the bottom.

Once again on the road,

From Orlando we went north to the Florida town that is farthest to the west, so far west it is in the next time zone, which is central. With Patty retired we are both now on a fixed limited income so to save money we decided to stay in government quarters. Our first try is with the Navy and I must say it is very nice, both clean and comfortable. We are located on the Naval Air Station, of Pensacola, Florida ( ; we reserved three days using the Navy Gateway, Inns and Suites. What is great about this base is the location is right on Pensacola Bay so we have a beach. It is home to the Naval Air Museum, and a lighthouse. Another great thing is the Navy’s Blue Angels practice here probably twice a week. I will need to take a few pictures and Patty wants to get some autographs for the grand kids.

Last night we went into the city of Pensacola to eat at one of America’s great steakhouses, McGuire’s Irish Pub. Many of my friends would like this place as many drinks are in the $3 to $4 range. The walls were covered with money; my estimate is over 1 million, every square inch of the ceiling and walls down to about 3 feet. The money is not flat on a flat surface but hung perpendicular. There is so much money that sound does not carry and the Irish music is muted. They make all their beer and I had a red lager named, McGuire’s Irish Red. Patty drank something called an Emory Chenoweth, not sure what it contains but probably 10 inches high and only $3.50. My taste of it was delicious. There was a drink with a limit of 3 per person, served in an old fashion quart size Mason jar from the local cemetery, called “The Irish Wake” at a cost of $9.99. The seating capacity of this place was very close to 800 or 900 people. The parking lot was perhaps five acres. Many pictures of famous people are on the walls, more than one can imagine.

Day two: We went to the Naval Air Museum. It is huge and extensive, over 150,000 square feet and four stories high. One day is not enough, as there is so much history from WW1, through today. If I was going to say which is bigger the USAF or the USN, I would go to the USAF at Wright Patterson AFB.  Pensacola trains most of the Naval Aviators if not all, some became very famous and some were our past presidents. Their planes and log books will be enshrined here forever.

There is a lighthouse on the base which posed nicely for some pictures. You can look up  there is also a museum attached. This is still a working lighthouse kept up by the Coast Guard.

The last day was a visit to a fort. It was Fort Pickens National Park. From the fort we watched the Blue Angels practice maneuvers, our very own private air show. There were six planes and they kept passing over and around the fort then back to the base and up into the sky. A great day especially after we left the fort for a nearby beach that gets 4.9 stars out of five. It was not crowded at all and many have said it is the best beach in the Eastern United States, Langdon Beach. If I return to Pensacola, I would stay at the Naval Lodge as it is closer to the museum and lighthouse with its own private beach. The beach used by the Inn I was in although also on base but perhaps two miles away, without the seclusion afforded by the lodge.


The next day we are off to stay on Joint Base Charleston, currently commanded by the A.F... We are staying at an Air Force Inn once again; it will be the least expensive nights of our trip. Unlike the old days when there were many clubs, the military has sort of made drinking out of vogue. Only one club on base now and this one had Bingo on the evening we arrived, however our arrival was an hour late to catch the entire evening’s game. There were two guaranteed $1,000 prizes included this evening along with all their normal prizes. We just ate in the Grill portion of the club, ran to the commissary and then back to our room. If anything was funny, we saw many open parking spaces in front of the club. Only trouble was the first 2 were for General Officers, the next 4 were for Colonels, then a few for Commanders of local units and the club manager. There was a group set aside for the E-9 enlisted also.  I parked in the back.

We made our reservation again by using  for those active or retired military members with proper identification.  I tried to read the regulation (AFI 37-135 24 September 2014) to see if DoD Civilian guests are authorized, as in the past I have stayed with DoD Civilians with Temporary Duty Orders while we were having required environmental training and could not decipher the policy.  There are so many exceptions and rules I feel DoD Civilians with DoD ID cards might be eligible.

I did notice that rule 39 includes: Other DoD ID card holders not on official business to include disabled veterans.

It almost looks like many people are authorized so probably the best thing is just check and confirm eligibility.


Ok, off to Fort Sumter, the place where the American Civil War Began. Decades of growing strife between north and south erupted in civil war on April 12, 1861, when confederate artillery opened fire on this Federal fort in Charleston Harbor. Fort Sumter surrendered 34 hours later. Union forces would try for nearly four years to take it back. You can’t drive to it so we took a ferry. The place where the ferry started there were two naval ships the USS Yorktown (CV/CVA/CVS-10) is one of 24 Essex-class aircraft carriers built during World War II for the United States Navy. She is named after the Battle of Yorktown of the American Revolutionary War, and is the fourth U.S. Navy ship to bear the name. I did not catch the name of the destroyer.

This is a National Park so once again I got to use my park pass. If you are 62 or over you should spend the $10 for one of the passes. Once you pay the fee all National Parks are free for life, this includes the National Seashore on the Cape. I have got my $10 back many times over already and I bought it 3 or 4 years ago.

This is also the area my father went to college, he attended the U.S. military Academy called, “The Citadel.” His study was chemical engineering. This was also the start to get his commission and join the army’s, 101st Screaming Eagles and become a paratrooper during WWII. I did not have time to visit the Citadel museum so I might have to return on another trip.


I am not sure if I can call these vacations anymore. Where we are retired now I would say they are just trips, excursions or adventures.


Many of my friends know I was once a Democrat who was a McGovern supporter. While I was stationed in Texas I shook McGovern’s hand by the Alamo, in San Antonio , during a rally. This particular political party left me behind many years ago.

Great Orators of the Democrat Party – PAST:

"One man with courage makes a majority." ~ Andrew Jackson

"The only thing we have to fear is fear itself." ~ Franklin D. Roosevelt

"The buck stops here." ~ Harry S. Truman

"Ask not what your country can do for you; ask what you can do for country." ~ John F. Kennedy


Great Orators of the Democratic Party today:

"It depends what your definition of 'is' is?'' President William Jefferson Clinton

"Those rumors are false. I believe in the sanctity of marriage." ~ John Edwards

"What difference does it make?" (Re: Benghazi) ~ Hillary Clinton

"I invented the Internet." ~ Al Gore (he did however vote to provide tax payer money for it’s startup)

"America is, is no longer, uh, what it, uh, could be, uh, what it was once was, uh, and I say to myself, uh, I don't want that future, uh, for my children." ~ Barack Obama

"I have campaigned in all 57 states." ~ Barack Obama (Quoted 2008)

"You don't need God anymore; you have us Democrats." ~ Nancy Pelosi (Quoted 2006) (A really, really stupid remark.)

"Paying taxes is voluntary." ~ Sen. Harry Reid

"Bill is the greatest husband and father I know. No one is more faithful, true, and honest than he is." ~ Hillary Rodham Clinton (Quoted1998)

"You have a business. You didn't build that. Someone else did!" ~ Barack Obama (Quoted 2012)

And the most ridiculous gem of wisdom, from the "Mother Superior Moron": "We just have to pass the Healthcare Bill to see what's in it." ~ Nancy Pelosi (Quoted March, 2010)

(As one Doctor said: “That is also the perfect definition of a stool sample.”)

A Great Republican: "Life is tough! It's even tougher when you are stupid.'' ~ John Wayne


Now I am on the Delmarva Peninsula and staying with a Navy Inn again. The internet and password are the same so my computer is happy. We drove all day (8 hours), had breakfast when we left but decided to have a nice dinner after we checked into Wallops Island, home of Surface Combat System Center (SCSC). It is located on a 6 square mile island with NASA.  There are so few people around it is weird.  The gate guard would open the gate electronically from his guard shack to let us in and out.  The gate was roughly a 10 foot high fence on rollers.  On my arrival there were about 8 men cooking on a bar-b-cue grill before they disappeared.  This was the most people I saw during my entire stay.  No base exchange, no club, no gas station, no commissary, just 3 or 4 buildings, a parking lot and a guard shack. The big building being what looked like a school for Navy training of Combat Systems.  The gate guard could jog around all the buildings in probably 5 minutes.

One funny thing, other than the ghost base item above.  A room is $70 and a suite is $70.  I took the suite, being the bargain hunter, penny pincher that I am.  All suites are on the second floor and all rooms on first floor.  The furniture in the rooms was sort of early Virginian, which was ornately carved cherry wood, no fiber board here, not even plywood.  Much better furniture than I have in my own house and those of the people I know.  The bed was a sleigh bed also cherry and carved.  I counted the drawers in the room in the 4 rooms of the suite, there were 21.  I was only sleeping there for two nights, our arrival and the one night after our day of exploring, so I did not unpack my suitcase as we would be leaving in the morning.  Not using all these drawers made me feel guilty so I put my glasses and wallet in one just before I went to sleep.  The Air Force would say we would be leaving at zero dark thirty.  There were probably only 4 or 5 other people and/or couples staying at the Inn but I did not see any of them, just their vehicles.

We had dinner at Ray’s Shanty on Chincoteague Road. If you drive the coast heading south after using the Cape May ferry this restaurant would be well worth the stop. I had ½ pound of steamed shrimp from North Carolina; it came with fries, slaw, and hush puppies. This meal was incredible and only $17.95. Patty had 2 crab cakes made in the facility with the same sides that I had for $21.95. Just an FYI my shrimp size was XL, probably 16 – 20 per pound. Another thing I noticed was this place also sells fresh seafood; the sign said uncooked North Carolina  shrimp the size I just ate, goes for $35 for 10 pounds (head and shell on). In New England we pay way too much for seafood and it is not as fresh. Patty and I were taken on a tour of the restaurant/facility while waiting for our table by the owner’s wife,.  The owner, her husband, Captain Ray Twiford we met on our way out of the restaurant.

Adjacent to this base is a NASA installation that commands the oldest rocket launch range in the U.S. This might be interesting as they do offer tours, but we are visiting Chincoteague National Park tomorrow to visit and photograph the wild horses on nearby islands.


We did get to go to the NASA museum on our way back from Chincoteague. I was becoming paranoid with all of the “Restricted Area,” signs on this base, plus those of the NASA and was wondering what they were hiding. There were probably nine parabolic dishes pointed toward the sky, some at least five stories high. More rockets are shot from this base then Cape Canaveral, Kennedy’s Space Station, approximately 30 per year. The next one is May 31. If you are an engineer in the field this would be the place to be. . Why might you ask, great food, low cost homes, incredible ocean views and parks and beaches everywhere.

I have always thought that buying a home on the Delaware portion of this three state peninsula as the state of DE has the 46th lowest tax rate of the lower 48 states. I guess taxes are most important to me anyway.

I did learn that the next full solar eclipse of the sun will be on August 21, 2017. A total solar eclipse will take place on Monday, August 21, 2017. A solar eclipse occurs when the Moon passes between Earth and the Sun, thereby totally or partly obscuring the image of the Sun for a viewer on Earth. Let us hope for good weather and no clouds as this phenomenon does not happen very often.


Having returned to my home once again I can return to my writing about inventions that changed mankind.  This week we will talk about the Stethoscope.

Many people have heard their stomach growling or listened to their heartbeat in the middle of the night.  But few know that inside the human body is a cacophony of sounds– from the gurgle of the intestines to the whisper of the lungs to the rush of the arteries and low rumble of other organs.  Doctors can draw conclusions about patient’s health depending upon the sounds they hear through a stethoscope.  The word “stethoscope” comes from the Greek words stehos, meaning “chest,” and skopein, meaning “to explore.”

Modern stethoscopes feature a round chest piece containing a hollow cup (bell) with a plastic disk, or diaphragm, inside it.  When the piece is placed on the patient’s chest, body sounds vibrate the diaphragm, creating sound waves that travel up hollow rubber tubes to the listener’s ears.  The bell transmits low-frequency sounds, while the diaphragm transmits higher-frequency sounds.

Rene Laennec invented the stethoscope in France in 1816.  Reportedly, while walking in Paris, Laennec saw two children sending signals to each other using a long piece of solid wood and a pin.  With an ear to one end, the child received an amplified sound of the pin scratching the opposite end of the stick.  After much experimentation, Laennec came up with the first stethoscope.  It consisted of a wooden tube and was connected to one ear only.  The tool was very similar to the ear trumpet, a device used by the hard-of-hearing to listen to conversations.

Flexible-tube stethoscopes for one ear arrived in 1840.  They were called ”snake ear trumpets.” In 1851 Irish physician Arthur Leared invented a binaural (two-eared) stethoscope which greatly improved the ability of a doctor to hear internal bodily sounds.

Today, physicians use many types of stethoscopes.  The acoustic stethoscope is the most familiar, but there are also electronic stethoscopes (stethophones) that electronically amplify body sounds.  They use a PC-based software that converts the sound into visual graphs that can be transmitted for remote diagnosis.

The invention of the stethoscope marked a major step in the redefinition of disease.  Formerly identified as a bundle of symptoms, disease in the current sense is considered a bodily problem even if there are no noticeable symptoms.  Using a stethoscope, a doctor can quickly tell the health of the lungs, heart, stomach, and intestines even if the patient notices no pain.


Here is another summer crockpot recipe. . .

Roasted Summer Squash with Pine Nuts and Romano Cheese


2 tablespoons olive oil
½ cup chopped yellow onion
1 medium red bell pepper chopped
1 clove garlic, minced
3 medium zucchini, cut into ½ -inch slices
3 medium summer squash, cut into ½ -inch slices
½ cup chopped pine nuts
1/3 cup grated Romano cheese
1 teaspoon Italian seasoning
1 teaspoon salt
1/4 teaspoon black pepper
1 tablespoon unsalted butter, cubed
Springs of fresh basil (optional

1.  Heat oil in large skillet over medium-high heat.  Add onion, bell pepper and garlic; cook and stir 10 minutes or until onion is translucent and soft.  Remove to Crockpot slow cooker.  Add zucchini and summer squash; toss lightly.


I hate it when people forward bogus warnings, and I have even done it myself a couple times unintentionally... but this one is real, and it's important. So please send this warning to everyone on your e- mail list.

If someone comes to your front door saying they are checking for ticks due to the warm weather and asks you to take your clothes off and dance around with your arms up


They only want to see you in your birthday suit.

I wish I'd gotten this yesterday. I feel so stupid.


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Billy Graham was returning to Charlotte after a speaking engagement and when his plane arrived there was a limousine there to transport him to his home.

As he prepared to get into the limo, he stopped and spoke to the driver.

"You know" he said, "I am 87 years old and I have never driven a limousine. Would you mind if I drove it for a while?"

The driver said, "No problem. Have at it."

Billy gets into the driver's seat and they head off down the highway.

A short distance away sat a rookie State Trooper operating his first speed trap.

The long black limo went by him doing 70 in a 55 mph zone.

The trooper pulled out and easily caught the limo and he got out of his patrol car to begin the procedure.

The young trooper walked up to the driver's door and when the glass was rolled down, he was surprised to see who was driving. He immediately excused himself and went back to his car and called his supervisor.

He told the supervisor, "I know we are supposed to enforce the law...But I also know that important people are given certain courtesies. I need to know what I should do because I have stopped a very important person."

The supervisor asked, "Is it the Governor?"

The young trooper said, "No, he's more important than that."

The supervisor said, "Oh, so it's the President."

The young trooper said, "No, he's even more important than that."

The supervisor finally asked, "Well then, who is it?"

The young trooper said, "I think it's Jesus, because he's got Billy Graham for a chauffeur!"


Two nuns were shopping in a food store and happened to be passing the beer and liquor section.

One nun asks the other if she would like a beer.

The other nun answered that would be good, but that she would be queasy about purchasing it.

The first nun said that she would handle it and picked up a six pack and took it to the cashier.

The cashier had a surprised look and the first nun said, "This is for washing our hair."

The cashier without blinking an eye, reached under the counter and put a package of pretzel sticks in the bag with the beer saying, "Here, don't forget the curlers."


Sorry had to finish up with the jokes as it is Monday night and I have been very busy.

See some of you at exercise.....  George

for a copy with your morning coffee, put letter in subject line and email

older copies available with Walters additions as he thinks it makes the letter easier to read.