Ray's musings and humor

Archive for November, 2006

Another look back

If you want to understand today, you have to search yesterday.

Pearl Buck



I don’t know what is going on but lately I can’t keep up with my opportunities for service, e-mail, appointments, and all the other stuff. So here I go again — a look back to past dailies.


November 30, 2000

I just returned from a working visit to New York City. I was fortunate to be allowed to work with a small group of leaders from industry, public heath organizations, and UNICEF to develop a proposal for a new international public/private partnership organization. The organization will be presented to a special meeting of leaders from the salt industry, non-governmental organizations, public health organizations, and others at a meeting in Paris early next year. If adopted, the organization will facilitate strategic public/private partnerships that will support the iodine deficiency elimination efforts that are underway in countries all over the world. It was great to do meaningful work while renewing old friendships.


November 30, 2001

It was an exciting evening last night in Indianapolis, my home town. I had the good fortune to attend the premier of a new production of the Music Man. One of my grandsons (a fifth grader) had one of the leading roles. He played Winthrop and had two solos. Naturally he gave an outstanding performance. Fortunately there were no Broadway producers in the audience so he will not be leaving for New York anytime soon. I suspect the reason they did not come was because it was an all fifth grader production.


November 30, 2004

I often get concerned that the current difficult international climate has put up barriers between the peoples of various countries. There use to be more emphasis on Public Diplomacy, such things as the people-to-people programs that helped others understand us better and us to better understand them. I have been in Asia, Eastern and Western Europe, the Americas, and briefly in Africa. Everywhere I have gone I have found good people and often have made new friends. I have learned that it is hard to dislike someone you know only because of their government, religion, or situation.


I have always found that we could communicate with the people we meet in other countries through very basic language, sign language, and sometimes with the help of translators. E-mail has provided some opportunity to establish similar relationships electronically. Unfortunately it is often either too difficult because of the words we use or because of misinterpretation of what we say because of our cultural differences. I had hoped that the daily would help to keep linkages open with some of my friends in other countries; unfortunately however the barriers are occasionally too great. In just the past week I lost connections with a friend in Tokyo and another in St. Petersburg, Russia, because of our inability to effectively communicate. I wish I had the time to do a version in the simplest English possible, but unfortunately I have a hard time keeping up as it is. So as I mourn the loss of these two connections I hope to continue to make new friends in other lands so I can learn about them and they can learn about us.


To each one of us friendship has a different meaning.

For all of us it is a gift. Friendship needs to be cherished and nurtured.

It needs to be cultivated on a daily basis. Then shall it germinate and yield its fruit.


A friend was lecturing in Latin America.  He was going to use a translator, but to identify with his audience, he wanted to begin his talk by saying in Spanish, "Good evening, ladies and gentlemen."  He arrived at the auditorium a little early and realized he did not know the Spanish words for ladies and gentlemen. Being rather resourceful, he went to the part of the building where the restrooms were, looked at the signs on the two doors, and memorized those two words.  

When the audience arrived and he was introduced, he stood up and said in Spanish, "Good evening, ladies and gentlemen."  

The audience was shocked. He didn’t know whether he had offended them or perhaps they hadn’t heard him or understood him.  So he decided to repeat it.  Again in Spanish he said, "Good evening, ladies and gentlemen."  

One person in the audience began to snicker.  Pretty soon the entire audience was laughing.  Finally, someone told him that he had said, "Good evening, bathrooms and broom closets!"  


She said: All Desirable things in life are either ILLEGAL, BANNED, FATTENING, OR MARRIED TO OTHERS.


Tim: I hear you just got married again.  

Sam: Yes, for the fourth time.  

Tim: What happened to your first three wives?  

Sam: They all died.  

Tim: How did that happen?  

Sam: My first wife ate poison mushrooms.  

Tim: How terrible! And your second?  

Sam: She ate poison mushrooms.  

Tim: And your third ate poison mushrooms too?  

Sam: Oh, no. She died of a broken neck.  

Tim: I see; an accident.  

Sam: Not exactly. She wouldn’t eat the mushrooms.  


We must learn to live together as brothers or perish together as fools.

Martin Luther King, Jr.


Little Johnny said to Suzi, "We’re going to have a GREAT time Saturday. I’ve gotten three tickets for the big game."

"Why do we need three?" asked Suzi.

Little Johnny gave her an evil grin and said, "They’re for your Father, Mother and kid sister!"


My wife will buy anything marked down. Yesterday she came home with an escalator.

Henny Youngman


If Men Got Pregnant…

* Maternity leave would last for two years…with full pay.  

* There’d be a cure for stretch marks.  

* Natural childbirth would become obsolete.  

* Morning sickness would rank as the nation’s number one health problem.  

* All methods of birth control would be improved 100 percent effectiveness.  

* Children would be kept in the hospital until they were toilet trained.  

* Men would be eager to talk about commitment.  

* They wouldn’t think twins were quite so cute.  

* Fathers would demand that their sons be home from dates by 10:00pm.  

* Men could use THEIR briefcases as diaper bags.  

* They’d have to stop saying, "I’m afraid I’ll drop him."  

* Paternity suits would be a line of clothes.  

* They’d stay in bed for the entire nine months.  

* Menus at most restaurants would list ice cream and pickles as an entree.  


It is a miracle that curiosity survives formal education.


A golfer asked his friend, "Why are you so late?"

The friend replied, "It’s Sunday. I had to toss a coin between going to church or playing golf and it took 25 tosses to get it right!"


If someone listens, or stretches out a hand or whispers a word of encouragement, or attempts to understand a lonely person, extraordinary things begin to happen.

Loretta Fitzaris


Stay well, do good work, and have fun.

 Ray Mitchell

Indianapolis, Indiana, USA

Management is not responsible for duplicates from previous dailies.

The editor is somewhat senile.

This daily is sent only to special people who want to start their day on an upbeat. If you have system overload because of our daily clutter, let me know and I will send you the information via mental telepathy. If you have not been getting our daily you can join at http://groups.google.com/group/Rays-Daily. Back issues are posted at http://360.yahoo.com/raykiwsp currently there are about 500 readers from all over the world.

You can be what you want!

“I have been impressed with the urgency of doing.

Knowing is not enough; we must apply.

Being willing is not enough; we must do.”

Leonardo da Vinci


Yesterday I commented on the value of developing a life plan and then making choices that are consistent with what you want your life to be. Today as I was thinking about what I wanted to say I recalled the following that suggests how we might go about implementing our plan. It is from an article by Robert Holden.


To be or not to be?

 Did anyone tell you when you were growing up, you can be what you want? Hopefully, if you were fortunate, there was at least one person in your life who encouraged you to dream, to dare and to be? The words, you can be what you want, sound so positive, hopeful and affirming. They are also a statement of truth, for they illustrate a very important principle of being. This principle is outlined in a poem of affirmation I wrote called "You Can Be What You Want!". It reads,


If you would want love, be loving.

If you would want care, be caring.

You can be what you want.


If you would want joy, be joyful.

If you would want peace, be peaceful.

You can be what you want.


If you would want happiness, be happy.

If you would want kindness, be kindly.

You can be what you want.


If you would want forgiveness, be forgiving.

If you would want acceptance, be accepting.

You can be what you want.


Being is proactive. It is literally being what you want. It is also about being first, e.g. if you want honesty, be honest first; if you want loyalty, be loyal first; if you want trust, be trusting first; if you want enthusiasm, be enthusiastic first; if you want courage, be courageous first; if you want inspiration, be a Light first! Be what you want, and stick to it! Your courage will be rewarded.


“Live life fully while you’re here. Experience everything. Take care of yourself and your friends. Have fun, be crazy, be weird. Go out and screw up! You’re going to anyway, so you might as well enjoy the process. Take the opportunity to learn from your mistakes: find the cause of your problem and eliminate it. Don’t try to be perfect; just be an excellent example of being human.”

Anthony Robbins


Things Not to Say to Your New Girlfriend’s Parents…!

My parole officer thinks Sara has a calming effect on me.

Did you see that saucer that flew over town yesterday?

Can you believe it! Those idiots at the corner market won’t cash my welfare check!

We’re going to keep our relationship quiet for now. My wife can be rather vindictive at times.

Those home pregnancy kits aren’t very reliable in my opinion.

Nice place you got here. That painting looks expensive. I bet a nice home like this came with a safe already built in, didn’t it?

There ain’t nothing that beats that great feeling of knowing your HIV test results are negative! I bet Sara’s will be okay too.

Can I pull my car in your garage? I’m not sure how long that cop car will stay lost.


“Don’t frown. You never know who is falling in love with your smile.”


Nancy:  You look a little frazzled today, Margaret.

Margaret:  I am!  This morning I took one of those free introductory sessions with a personal trainer at the health club, and it finally made up my mind about taking the training.

Nancy:  So you’re going to do it?

Margaret:  Oh, hell, no!  I have no desire to pay some skinny bitch to yell at me!


No one needs a smile as much as a person who fails to give one.


Ten year old Johnny rushes home from school. He invades the fridge and freezer and is scooping out some ice cream when his mother enters the kitchen.

She says, "Put that away, Johnny. You can’t have ice cream now. It’s way too close to supper time. Go outside and play."

Johnny whimpers and says, "But there’s no one to play with."

Trying to placate him, she says, "OK. I’ll play with you. What do you want to play?"

He says, "I wanna play Mommy and Daddy." Trying not to register surprise and a bit confused about what her 10 year old son was learning in school, she decided to appease him, by saying, "Fine, I’ll play. What do I do?"

Johnny says, "You go up to the bedroom and lie down."

Figuring that she can easily control the situation, Mom goes upstairs. Johnny, feeling a bit cocky, swaggers down the hall and opens the utility closet. He dons his fathers old fishing hat. At the top of the stairs he moves to the bedroom doorway.

Really confused, and now even a bit worried, his mother raises her head and says, "What do I do now?"

In a gruff manner, Johnny says, "Get your be-hind downstairs and get that kid some ice cream!"


"If you can’t find the time to do it right the first time, when will you find the time to do it over?"


Answers to Questions on Science Tests By 5th and 6th graders:

The spinal column is a long bunch of bones. The head sits on the top, and you sit on the bottom.

A city purifies its water supply by filtering the water and then forcing it through an aviator.

The inhabitants of Moscow are Mosquitoes.

It is so hot in some places that people there have to live in other places.

Momentum is something you give a person when they go away.

Mushrooms always grow in damp places which is why they look like umbrellas.

The four seasons are salt, pepper, mustard and vinegar.

The alimentary canal is located in the northern part of Indiana.

Thunder is a rich source of loudness.

Some people can tell what time it is by looking at the sun, but I never have been able to make out the numbers.

In some rocks you can find the fossil footprints of fishes.

When planets run around and around in circles, we say they are orbiting. When people do it, we say they are crazy.

One of the main causes of dust is janitors.

For asphyxiation, apply artificial respiration until the victim is dead.

Blood circulates through the body by flowing down one leg and up the other.

A monsoon is a French gentleman.

The word "trousers" is an uncommon noun because it is singular at the top and plural at the bottom.

Rain is saved up in cloud banks.

To keep milk from turning sour, keep it in the cow.


“Every human being is the author of his own health or disease.”



Stay well, do good work, and have fun.

 Ray Mitchell

Indianapolis, Indiana, USA

Management is not responsible for duplicates from previous dailies.

The editor is somewhat senile.

This daily is sent only to special people who want to start their day on an upbeat. If you have system overload because of our daily clutter, let me know and I will send you the information via mental telepathy. If you have not been getting our daily you can join at http://groups.google.com/group/Rays-Daily. Back issues are posted at http://360.yahoo.com/raykiwsp currently there are about 500 readers from all over the world.

Do you really know what you want?

“My basic principle is that you don’t make decisions because they are easy; you don’t make them because they are cheap; you don’t make them because they’re popular; you make them because they’re right.”

Father Theodore Hesburgh



I firmly believe in what Father Hesburgh said, however the trick is to know what is right for you. I think one of the hardest things in life is resisting the temptation to give away our decisions to events or to others. Far too many of us accept promotions or transfers only because they are offered. Often we do so only because we think if someone else wants to promote or move us then it must be the right thing to do since they are recognizing our worth, unfortunately acceptance may be the wrong decision to make.


Sure, when we make a major decision we think about consequences such as: if we move what will happen when we pull the kids out of school or what if we can’t sell the house, and so on. Sadly though few of us spend much time thinking about what impact our decisions will have on our life plan; that is if we even have a life plan. Too often we just take the easy way out and go with the flow. When we limit our decision making to only the short term we stand a good chance of ending up missing a great opportunity to lay the foundation for enriching the rest of our lives.


I spend many hours each week with people who are interested in making a mid-career change. Too often our discussions are limited to what they can do instead of finding out what they would like to do. I get distressed when people miss the opportunity to rethink what they would like out of life by not thinking beyond just what they can do in a job. You would be surprised how few people ever stop to think about what makes them happy. Our happiness is more often than not the result of the things we take for granted and don’t even think about. It may be the pleasure we get from working with others, working in pleasant surroundings, having a variety of tasks, and the other things that make the day enjoyable. And who could forget having access to a good cup of coffee. It is these little things in our everyday life that provide us a platform for happiness.


But of course there is more to a life plan than just the day-to-day pleasures. We need to spend time planning what we can do to make sure our loved ones share our happiness, where we would like to retire, what will do that we can’t do now, and how we can share in the many pleasures that await us. It is when we put the plan together that we will have the best shot at future happiness. For it is when we have a plan that is the result of our really knowing ourselves we can start making the right decisions that will ensure that our lives can be the best we can make them.


When to start? Now! Twenty or seventy it is never too late. Oh and by the way money isn’t everything, it really isn’t.


“The doors we open and close each day decide the lives we live.”

Flora Whittemore


You know you work in Corporate America if …

1) You’ve sat at the same desk for 4 years and worked for three different companies.

2) Your resume is on a disk in your pocket.

3) When someone asks about what you do for a living, you lie.

4) You get really excited about a 2% pay raise.

5) You learn about your layoff on CNN.

6) Your biggest loss from a system crash is that you lose your best jokes.

7) Your supervisor doesn’t have the ability to do your job.

8) You sit in a cubicle smaller than your bedroom closet.

9) Salaries of the members on the Executive Board are higher than all the Third World countries’ annual budgets combined.

10) It’s dark when you drive to and from work.

11) Fun is when issues are assigned to someone else.

12) "Communication" is something your group is having problems with.

13) You see a good looking person and know it is a visitor.

14) Free food left over from meetings is your main staple diet.

15) Weekends are those days your spouse makes you stay home.

16) Being sick is defined as can’t walk or you’re in the hospital.

17) You’re already late on the assignment you just got.

18) Dilbert cartoons hang outside every cube.

19) Your boss’ favorite lines are "When you get a few minutes", "In your spare time", "When you’re freed up", and "I have an opportunity for you."

20) Your relatives and family describe your job as "works with computers".


"A lawyer is someone who writes an eighty-page document and calls it a brief!"


A friend always seemed to lean slightly to the left.  It bothered me, so I suggested that he see a doctor and have his legs checked out.  For years, he refused, telling me I was crazy, but last week, he finally went.  

Sure enough, the doctor discovered his left leg was a half -inch shorter than his right.  A bit of orthopedic surgery later, both legs are exactly the same length now, and he no longer leans.  

"So," I said, "you didn’t believe me when I told you a doctor could fix your leg."  

He just looked at me and said, "I stand corrected."  


When you’re rich, it’s "eccentric"; when you’re poor, it’s just strange.


A frustrated father vented, "When I was a youngster, I was disciplined by being sent to my room without supper. But in my son’s room, he has his own color TV, telephone, computer, and CD player."

"So what do you do?" asked his friend.

"I send him to MY room!" exclaimed the father.


The coffee break, even for those who realize that caffeine may not be good for them, still beats staying at the desk and working.


The headwaiter of an elegant restaurant recoiled in disgust as a man in boots, torn jeans and a leather jacket approached him. "Hey, man," he said, "where’s the bathroom?"

"Go down the hall and turn left," replied the headwaiter, "When you see the sign marked ‘Gentlemen,’ pay no attention to it and go right inside."


To err is human, to moo, bovine.


Mike meets Ed at the bar for a drink after work.  Mike really looks down in the dumps.

Ed asks, "Why the long face?  Bad day at work?"

"Yeah," replies Mike.  "You know sometimes I wish I worked for the Pope instead of my boss."

"Why is that," asks Ed.

Mike sighs and says, "Cause then I would only have to kiss his ring."


Blessed are those who hunger and thirst, for they are sticking to their diets.


Work like you don’t need the money.

Love like you’ve never been hurt.

Dance like nobody’s watching.

Sing like nobody’s listening.

Live like it’s Heaven on Earth.


Decide what you want, decide what you are willing to exchange for it.

Establish your priorities and go to work.

H. L. Hunt


Stay well, do good work, and have fun.

 Ray Mitchell

Indianapolis, Indiana, USA

Management is not responsible for duplicates from previous dailies.

The editor is somewhat senile.

This daily is sent only to special people who want to start their day on an upbeat. If you have system overload because of our daily clutter, let me know and I will send you the information via mental telepathy. If you have not been getting our daily you can join at http://groups.google.com/group/Rays-Daily. Back issues are posted at http://360.yahoo.com/raykiwsp currently there are about 500 readers from all over the world.

You can be a triple winner!

"It hit me very early on that something was terribly wrong, that I would see silos full of food and supermarkets full of food, and kids starving. … In Fair Trade, we see ourselves as this infinitesimal part of the world economy. But somebody’s got to come up with an alternative model that says children eating is No. 1."

Medea Benjamin, co-founder, Global Exchange



One of my favorite stores in Indianapolis is Global Gifts, a not-for-profit business committed to serving impoverished artisans and producers in the developing world by:

  • Providing vital fair income and employment for people of limited opportunity;
  • Marketing ethically produced and ethically obtained handmade products;
  • Educating the public about the cultures and traditions associated with items they sell; and
  • Helping consumers spend their shopping dollars in ways that benefit impoverished peoples around the world.


A visit to Global Gifts is a unique experience.  Shoppers appreciate that items are a product of centuries of talent and techniques passed down from generation to generation.  Their products are hand-made by artisans spanning the globe and representing over 35 countries, mostly from the developing regions of the world. At Global Gifts you will find, jewelry, pottery, beautiful textiles, wood and stone carvings, musical instruments, basketry, handmade cards and stationery, toys and games, nativities and holiday items, fairly traded organic coffee, teas and chocolate, and much more.


This coming Friday and Saturday Global Gifts will donate 10% of the sales at both their downtown and north side stores to my Kiwanis Clubs annual Clothe-a-Child project when buyers let the clerks know that they are friends of Kiwanis. Those shoppers who do will be triple winners; they will get great products at very competitive prices, they will be helping sustain artisans and producers in other parts of the world, and they will help my fellow Kiwanis members provide winter clothes to needy kids at Christmas.


If you are in Indy please stop by Global gifts this Friday or Saturday, I think you will be glad you did. If you don’t know where the global Gifts stores are located let me know, I’ll tell you where they are and who knows I might even open the door for you. If you are too far away to shop In Indianapolis, look for a fair trade store in your area and visit them, I think you will be pleased.


"When people become economically empowered, they gain political and social power. Many of the groups that we work with do more than just produce crafts; they’re involved in community development, health and education. For the women we work with, the effect is even greater. As they gain employment, they become able to leave abusive situations, to seek legal assistance, to acquire education, to become independent. Their work allows them to be economically significant in the family and gives them leverage to be considered an equal."

Bob Chase, executive director, SERRV International


Q: How many internet mail list subscribers does it take to change a light bulb?

A: 1,343 –

1 to change the light bulb and to post to the mail list that the light bulb has been changed;

14 to share similar experiences of changing light bulbs and how the light bulb could have been changed differently;

7 to caution about the dangers of changing light bulbs;

27 to point out spelling/grammar errors in posts about changing light bulbs;

53 to flame the spell checkers;

41 to correct spelling/grammar flames;

6 to argue over whether it’s "lightbulb" or "light bulb"

156 to write to the list administrator about the light bulb discussion and its inappropriateness to this mail list;

109 to post that this list is not about light bulbs and to please take this email exchange to litebulblist;

203 to demand that cross posting to grammar-l, spelling-l and illuminati-l about changing light bulbs be stopped;

111 to defend the posting to this list saying that we all use light bulbs and therefore the posts *are* relevant to this mail list;

306 to debate which method of changing light bulbs is superior, where to buy the best light bulbs, what brand of light bulbs work best for this technique and what brands are faulty;

27 to post URL’s where one can see examples of different light bulbs;

14 to post that the URL’s were posted incorrectly and the post the corrected URL’s;

3 to post about links they found from the URL’s that are relevant to this list which makes light bulbs relevant to this list;

33 to link all posts to date, then quote them including all headers and footers and then add "Me too";

12 to post to the list that they are unsubscribing because they cannot handle the light bulb controversy;

19 to quote the "Me too’s" to say "Me three";

4 to suggest that posters request the light bulb FAQ;

44 to ask what is "FAQ";

4 to say "didn’t we go through this already a short time ago on Usenet?"

143 to ask "what’s Usenet?"


“Those who bring sunshine into the lives of others cannot keep it from themselves.”

James Matthew Barrie


At a business conference in Montpelier, Vermont, the state tax commissioner asked the audience which sort of taxation they found fairest. There was a pause, and then a white haired man in the back raised his hand. "The poll tax," he said.

"But the poll tax was repealed," replied the commissioner.

"Ay-ah," declared the man, "that’s what I like best about it."


“In the end, the size of a person’s accomplishment can best be measured by the size of their heart.”


My friend Ida was slowly recovering from a heart attack. "Doctor," she pleaded with her cardiologist, "you must keep me alive for the next two years. I want to attend my first grandchild’s bar mitzvah."

"We’ll try," he replied compassionately.

In due course Ida gratefully attended the festive rite of passage.

Some time later she again spoke to her doctor. "My granddaughter is to be married in 18 months. Please help me to be able to attend her wedding."

"We’ll do our best," he replied.

And my friend happily attended her granddaughter’s wedding.

Ten years passed. Ida visited her cardiologist regularly and followed his instructions religiously. One morning she called him. "Doctor," she began, "I’m feeling fine, but I have another request to ask of you: Remember how you saw me through to my grandson’s bar mitzvah?"


"And later how you helped me attend my granddaughter’s wedding?"


"Well, as you know I’ve just celebrated my 80th birthday. And I just bought myself a new mattress."


"It has a 20-year guarantee…"


Cherishing children is the mark of a civilized society.

Joan Ganz Cooney


Stay well, do good work, and have fun.

 Ray Mitchell

Indianapolis, Indiana, USA

Management is not responsible for duplicates from previous dailies.

The editor is somewhat senile.

This daily is sent only to special people who want to start their day on an upbeat. If you have system overload because of our daily clutter, let me know and I will send you the information via mental telepathy. If you have not been getting our daily you can join at http://groups.google.com/group/Rays-Daily. Back issues are posted at http://360.yahoo.com/raykiwsp currently there are about 500 readers from all over the world.

It sure is!

 “Life is full of beauty.

Notice it.

Notice the bumble bee, the small child, and the smiling faces.

Smell the rain, and feel the wind.

Live your life to the fullest potential, and fight for your dreams.”

Ashley Smith



Our Thanksgiving Holiday is behind us and the holiday season has begun. Fortunately I was left with a list of just how much there is to appreciate in my life. I appreciate,

  • all the smart people that share their wisdom with me for they enrich my life,
  • All those who make each day easier than it would have been without them. The druggist, grocery clerk, mailman, trash hauler, newspaper deliverer, the UPS driver, the waitress, the cook, my goodness the list is endless, they all deserve my thanks,
  • All my family including those friends who are family in spirit,
  • And most of all I appreciate the thousands of people who have come and gone in my life. Enemies, friends, kind strangers, employers, and the like all have contributed to the person I have become. Sadly I never thanked very many at the time for I did not realize how much they were influencing my life.


I have now decided that everyday will be a day of thanksgiving, a day when I can express thanks versus just storing memories to be thought about on Thanksgiving Day. So now on Thanksgiving Thursday in November I will eat turkey, enjoy my family, and remember how 364 thankful days a year have provided me the opportunity to celebrate all I have been given by others.


Every once in a while the world opens up and lets heaven shine through…

We open up our senses and realize just how wonderful the simple things are

and just how beautiful nature can be:

Sunshine on an early spring morning…

A beautiful sunset…

A song that brings back memories…

Moonlight over the water…

The smell of fresh flowers after a rain…

A snowy egret skimming across a pond…

The laughter of people having fun…

A peaceful stream and a gentle waterfall…

All of these things make me love life and feel good,

And the same is true when I think of you.


What an automated society we live in: Have you ever noticed that when a traffic signal turns green, it automatically activates the horn of the car behind you?


Murphy’s Laws of Genealogy

1. The public ceremony in which your distinguished ancestor participated and at which the platform collapsed under him turned out to be his hanging.

2. When at last after much hard work you have evolved the mystery that you have been working on for two years, your aunt says, "I could have told you that."

3. You search ten years for your grandmother’s maiden name to eventually find it on a letter in a box in the attic.

4. You never asked your father about his family when he was alive because you weren’t interested in genealogy then.

5. The will you need is in the safe on board the Titanic.

6. Copies of old newspapers have holes occurring only on the surnames.

7. John, son of Thomas the immigrant whom your relatives claim as the family progenitor, died on board ship at the age of 10.

8. Your great grandfather’s newspaper obituary states that he died leaving no issue of record.

9. Another genealogist has just insulted the keeper of the vital records you need.

10. The relative who had all the family photographs gave them all to her daughter who has no interest in genealogy and no inclination to share.


"A life lived with integrity – even if it lacks the trappings of fame and fortune is a shinning star in whose light others may follow in the years to come."  

Denis Waitley


"No need for me to come out to the house," the doctor told the worried caller. "I’ve checked my files and your uncle isn’t really ill at all – he just thinks he’s sick."

A week later, the doctor telephoned to make sure his diagnosis had been correct. "How’s your uncle today?" he asked.

"Worse," came the reply. "Now he thinks he’s dead."


My parents were soooooo poor, they got married for the rice.


Things You’ll Never Hear In A Western Movie:

"I reckon I’ll have me a half-caf double latte with a twist.  

"Gentlemen, rather than get caught up in mindless reaction, let’s draw upon our feminine selves for a more intuitive solution."  

"Can we postpone this duel till 12:05? I gotta use the little boys room."  

"Injuns! Quick, pull the wagons into an irregular dodecagon!"  

"Y’know, Badlands Pete… a roaring campfire, good coffee, nice prairie breeze, just you ‘n’ me… what say we put on the rhinestone gowns and dance a jig or two?"  

"Let’s see… hardtack and pemmican… that’s three grams of fat, seven grams of protein, and two starches."  

"You ‘n’ Slim round up them strays, and I’ll tell Cookie to get started on the gazpacho and the fondue."  

"That’s him! That’s the yella-bellied varmint who shot my therapist!"  

"He was a strong man, a good marshal, and I reckon he had a keen eye for interior decoration."  

"Hey, Buck, do these chaps make my butt look big?"  

"It’s like I keep tellin’ ya, Earl: men is from Tombstone, women is from Dodge."  

"HANG HIM HIGH, BOYS!! …Okay, now a little to the left… .Oooh! Stop right there. Perfect!"  


We make a living by what we get, but we make a life by what we give.

Norman MacFinan


He said: I took my 5 year old grandson to the optometrist to pick up his new glasses. The glasses were prescribed "to help him read and be able to see the computer better". When we got back home, he got on the computer to play a game. In a few minutes he called me and said there was something wrong with his glasses. I asked him what was the problem and he said, "I still can’t read."


Give me ambiguity or give me something else.


It was a sunny Saturday morning on the course and I was beginning my pre-shot routine, visualizing my upcoming shot, when a voice came over the clubhouse loudspeaker.

"Would the gentleman on the woman’s tee back up to the men’s tee please!"

I was still deep in my routine, seemingly impervious to the interruption.

Again the announcement, "Would the MAN on the WOMEN’S tee kindly back up to the men’s tee."

I simply ignored the guy and kept concentrating.

Once more the man yelled, "Would the man on the woman’s tee back up to the men’s tee, PLEASE!"

I finally stopped, turned, looked through the clubhouse window directly at the person with the mike and shouted back, "Would the person in the clubhouse kindly shut the hell up and let me play my second shot?"


At times our own light goes out and is rekindled by a spark from another person.

Each of us has cause to think with deep gratitude of those who have lighted the flame within us.

Albert Schweitzer


Stay well, do good work, and have fun.

 Ray Mitchell

Indianapolis, Indiana, USA

Management is not responsible for duplicates from previous dailies.

The editor is somewhat senile.

This daily is sent only to special people who want to start their day on an upbeat. If you have system overload because of our daily clutter, let me know and I will send you the information via mental telepathy. If you have not been getting our daily you can join at http://groups.google.com/group/Rays-Daily. Back issues are posted at http://360.yahoo.com/raykiwsp currently there are about 500 readers from all over the world.

Sorry Kids!!!

“What you need to know about the past is that no matter what has happened, it has all worked together to bring you to this very moment. And this is the moment you can choose to make everything new. Right now.”

Author Unknown



I got curious as to how the daily has changed over the years so I picked today as the day to look back.


November 21, 2000

Believe it or not today is world hello day. So hi there.

If you are in the US this is the week you will:

Enjoy your Thanksgiving holiday,

Take lots of family pictures,

Eat way too much,

And swear that you are going to start dieting next Monday.

At least that is what I will do.


November 21, 2001

It was on this day in 1620 that the Pilgrims made landfall at Provincetown Harbor on Cape Cod after 67 days at sea. While anchored in the harbor, the Mayflower Compact was signed. The Pilgrims didn’t call it a "compact" and we can’t be absolutely certain of its contents as the original has never been found. Arguably the Compact is of little actual legal significance but it is of great symbolic significance as it was the first democratic document written by colonists.


November 21, 2003

There are some advantages to retirement; you get to do stuff that you wouldn’t otherwise. As an example I recently revisited philosopher John Stuart Mill’s essay “On Liberty.” In his essay he makes a strong case for freedom of speech and expression. He makes the point that when opinion is suppressed society looses the opportunity to test conventional wisdom, as well as to discover where truth lies, even when that truth is generally unpopular. That got me thinking that Mill was proven right a number of times in the last century. Nation after nation who controlled their press and speech have withered or even died as they stagnated in an environment sustained by people who were spoon fed the party line.


It got me to wondering if many of us don’t voluntarily suffer from the same syndrome. In years past we all pretty much read the same things, listened to the same news, heard the same debates and discussed the issues with each other. In other words ideas were offered and tested in full view of us all. Today many of us have the ability to choose only what we agree with, often because of emotion, prejudice, or a lack of intellectual curiosity.


November 21, 2005

To all the children, I am sorry.

•I am sorry that we have not been better role models.

•I am sorry that you have had to observe the anger and ill will displayed by so many of us.

•I am sorry that we did not support better education so that you could have learned and discovered all the wonder that is in you.

•I am sorry that we would not pay for longer school years, longer school days, and an earlier start, when parents of children in other parts of the world did so.

•I am sorry that we could not replace the foreign born PHDs that provided so much advanced education to the brightest among you. If we would have done a better job educating you we would not have needed them.

•I am sorry that we depended so much on fast food and junk food that we did not eat together more often and that you never experienced the joy that comes from cooking a special meal.

•I am sorry that we gave you soft drinks and candy instead of the foods you needed for good health.

•I am sorry that we did not put in more sidewalks, parks, and recreational opportunities so that you would not have put your health at risk as obesity ran rampant.

•I am sorry that so many of you did not get the medical attention you needed as more and more parents could no longer afford it.

•I am sorry that we preferred to mortgage your future by our unwillingness to pay for our wars and our needs as the bills came due.

•I am sorry that we did not walk more beaches together instead of going to so many theme parks, movies, and arcades.

•I am sorry we did not provide you more to read.

•And I am sorry that we were satisfied providing you electronic games to keep you busy so that you would not depend on us to often.

I hope you can do better, if you don’t you too will have to apologize to the children. The world can be a much better place for everyone, but only if you make it that way.


In a software design meeting, we were using typical technical Jargon to discuss a data exchange interface with a vendor.  One co-worker said the programming we had ordered was delayed because the vendor was suffering from a "severe nonlinear waterfowl issue."  Curious, the team leader raised his eyebrows and asked, "What exactly is that?" The programmer replied, "They don’t have all their ducks in a row."


The coach’s wife yells to her husband, "It’s Sports Illustrated on the phone."

The coach falls all over himself racing to the phone and says, "Hello"?

Then he hears, "For just 75 cents an issue…."



"I’ll come and make love to you at five o’clock. If I’m late, start without me."

"I’m as pure as the driven slush."

"It’s the good girls who keep diaries; the bad girls never have the time."

"If I had to live my life again, I’d make the same mistakes, only sooner."


"It takes one to know one — and vice versa!"


My friends and I had joined a weight-loss organization. At one meeting the instructor held up an apple and a candy bar. "What are the attributes of this apple," she asked, "and how do they relate to our diet?"

"Low in calories" and "lots of fiber" were among the answers.

She then detailed what was wrong with eating candy, and concluded, "Apples are not only more healthful but also less expensive. Do you know I paid 75¢ for this candy bar?" We stared as she held aloft the forbidden treat.

From the back of the room a small voice spoke up: "I’ll give you a dollar for it."


"The only advantage to living in the past is that the rents are much cheaper!"


The tiresome jury selection process continued, each side hotly contesting and dismissing potential jurors. Don O’Brian was called for his question session.

"Married or single?"

"Married for twenty years, Your Honor."

"Formed or expressed an opinion?"

"Not in twenty years, Your Honor."


"Getting old is when a narrow waist and a broad mind change places!"


The husband was adjusting his tie in front of the mirror tonight before this awards dinner and he asked his wife, "Honey, how many great men do you think there are in the world today?"

"One less than you think," his wife replied.


“Stop acting as if life is a rehearsal.

Live this day as if it were your last.

The past is over and gone.

The future is not guaranteed.”

Wayne Dyer


Stay well, do good work, and have fun.

 Ray Mitchell

Indianapolis, Indiana, USA

Management is not responsible for duplicates from previous dailies.

The editor is somewhat senile.

This daily is sent only to special people who want to start their day on an upbeat. If you have system overload because of our daily clutter, let me know and I will send you the information via mental telepathy. If you have not been getting our daily you can join at http://groups.google.com/group/Rays-Daily. Back issues are posted at http://360.yahoo.com/raykiwsp currently there are about 500 readers from all over the world.

I Trust You!!!

”The chief lesson I have learned in a long life is that the only way to make a man trustworthy is to trust him; and the surest way to make him untrustworthy is to distrust him and show your distrust.”

Henry L. Stimson


Trust definitions:

  • Confidence in and reliance on good qualities, especially fairness, truth, honor, or ability 
  • Responsibility for taking good care of somebody or something
  • Position of somebody who is expected by others to behave responsibly or honorably


Trust is cool as far as I am concerned. There is far too much distrust in the world for us to be part of the problem. I often fail, but trust me I don’t mean to, fortunately most tolerate my failings and trust my motives. I have found that when I offer my trust to those that I meet they almost never let me down and they return my trust, and I like that.


Just think of those you know who are distrustful almost to the point of paranoia, they really are not much fun to be around. Just think how bad it must be for them since they are always around themselves. Sadly they often take others down with them to the point that there is so much suspicion that life loses some of it’s luster.


The only thing I know that may be worse is when we don’t even trust ourselves. How sad it is when people’s confidence is sapped by their fear of failure. We all can trust our ability to do our best, and if that is not good enough so be it; at least we did what we could. As I have often said “This is as good as I get, take me or leave me, it is up to you,” Unfortunately there are those who so distrust themselves that they leave the person they might have been. I am so glad you are not like that.


”Self-trust is the first secret of success.”

Ralph Waldo Emerson


Two guys in a bar…One says "Did your hear the news – Mike is dead!"

"Wooo, what the hell happened to him?"

"Well he was on his way over to my house the other day and when he arrived outside the house he didn’t brake properly and boom – He hit the pavement and the car flips up and he crashed through the sunroof – went flying through the air and smashed through my upstairs bedroom window."

"What a horrible way to die!"

"No no, he survived that, that didn’t kill him at all. So, he’s landed in my upstairs bedroom and he’s all covered in broken glass on the floor. Then, he spots the big old antique wardrobe we have in the room and reaches up for the handle to try to pull himself up. He’s just dragging himself up when bang, this massive wardrobe comes crashing down on top of him, crushing him and breaking most of his bones."

"What a way to go, that’s terrible!"

"No no, that didn’t kill him he survived that. He managed to get the wardrobe off him and crawls out onto the landing, he tries to pull himself up on the banister but under his weight, the banister breaks and he goes falling down on to the first floor. In mid air, all the broken banister poles spin and fall on him, pinning him to the floor, sticking right through him."

"Now that is the most unfortunate way to go!"

"No no, that didn’t kill him, he even survived that. So he’s on the downstairs landing, just beside the kitchen. He crawls in to the kitchen, tries to pull himself up on the cooker, but reached for a big pot of boiling hot water, whoosh, the whole thing came down on him and burned most of his skin off him."

"Man, what a way to go!"

"No no, he survived that, he survived that ! He’s lying on the ground, covered in boiling water and he spots the phone and tries to pull himself up, to call for help, but instead he grabs the light switch and pulls the whole thing off the wall and the water and electricity didn’t mix and so he got electrocuted, wallop, 10,000 volts shot through him."

"Now that is one awful way to go!"

"No no, he survived that, he …"

"Hold on now, just how the hell did he die?"

"I shot him!"

"You shot him? What the hell did you shoot him for?"

"He was wrecking my house."


Nobody can be just like me. Even I have trouble doing it.


A woman was determined to get her newly retired husband some attractive leisure clothes. She went into a men’s clothing store and told the salesgirl, "I’m looking for something youthful, something wild in a men’s pair of slacks."

"Oh," sighed the salesgirl. "Aren’t we all?"


”As soon as you trust yourself, you will know how to live.”

Johann Wolfgang von Goethe


My 50-something friend Nancy and I decided to introduce her mother to the magic of the Internet.  Our first move was to acess the popular "Ask Jeeves" site, and we told her it could answer any question she had.  

Nancy’s mother was very skeptical until Nancy said, "It’s true, Mom. Think of something to ask it."  

As I sat with fingers poised over the keyboard, Nancy’s mother thought a minute, then responded, "How is Aunt Helen feeling?"  


The most beautiful discovery true friends make is that they can grow separately without growing apart.

Elizabeth Foley


The strangest mystery of all is a woman’s bladder. X-rays prove that the female bladder is proportional to the woman’s size, yet they always have to pee.

Driving in a car seems to irritate the problem. It also irritates the guy she’s driving with.

The big question is: How is it that women pee every 10 to 15 minutes; yet they are always retaining water?


There is always a certain peace in being what one is, in being that completely.

Ugo Betti


He said: About five years ago the battery in my beat-up VW beetle had died because I left the lights on overnight . I was in a hurry to get to work on time so I ran into the house to get my wife to give me a hand to start the car.

I told her to get into our second car, a prehistoric oversized gas guzzler, and use it to push my car fast enough to start it. I pointed out to her that because the VW had an automatic transmission, it needed to be pushed at least 30 MPH for it to start. She said fine, hoped into her car and drove off.

I sat there fuming wondering what can she be doing. A minute passed by and when I saw her in the rearview mirror coming at me at about 40 MPH, I realized that I should have been A LOT clearer with my directions.


”Trust each other again and again. When the trust level gets high enough, people transcend apparent limits, discovering new and awesome abilities for which they were previously unaware.”

David Armistead


Stay well, do good work, and have fun.

 Ray Mitchell

Indianapolis, Indiana, USA

Management is not responsible for duplicates from previous dailies.

The editor is somewhat senile.

This daily is sent only to special people who want to start their day on an upbeat. If you have system overload because of our daily clutter, let me know and I will send you the information via mental telepathy. If you have not been getting our daily you can join at http://groups.google.com/group/Rays-Daily. Back issues are posted at http://360.yahoo.com/raykiwsp currently there are about 500 readers from all over the world.

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