Ray's musings and humor

Archive for September, 2009

Ray’s good news

"I had found a kind of serenity, a new maturity… I didn’t feel better or stronger than anyone else, but it seemed no longer important whether everyone loved me or not–more important now was for me to love them. Feeling that way turns your whole life around; living becomes the act of giving."

Beverly Sills



Good news, my tests went well yesterday they found no blockage so no heart surgery is required. So the mystery of Ray’s periodic energy crashes continues with more Doc’s in the queue waiting their turn. But I am back, can start driving tomorrow and on with the show.


I really like what Beverly Sills said. As the years have gone by I have learned that attrempting to make everyone happy by trying to do what you think they would like you to do or trying to be something your not is a slippery slope leading to misfortune and unhappiness. I think we benefit when we achieve a balance of self confidence, tolerance, forgiveness, understanding and humor while avoiding excessive efforts to judge others.

I am not saying that I am capable of liking everyone, I’m not, but I am capable of rising above any feeling of need or responsibility to judge or change them. But more often than not I find that the flaws I see or imagine in someone is only on the surface and that underneath rests a person who relishes understanding while hiding much that is worthwhile.

I, like most people do like to be liked but only if it is for what I am and not what I may appear to be. Once I started to understand that I had the power to rebuild broken relationships by simply not being part of the problem wonderful things happened. I find the reward that comes from shared experiences and genuine concern for others is worth more than almost anything else in life.

I hope I have convinced you to tolerate my flaws, forgive my missteps and allow me to continue to benefit from our friendship.

In the same spirit I would like to share this story about an act of kindness that was written by Veronica Hay, inspirational writer and publisher of A Magazine of People and Possibilities.

A friend called me recently to tell me that one of her daughter’s teachers had committed suicide. Needless to say, everyone involved was extremely upset by this.

Many looked upon this as a selfish act on the part of the teacher. I thought to myself how quick we are to judge another after the fact. And how terribly slow we are to recognize the walking wounded all around us.

The news of this teacher’s suicide reminded me of a story I read about an elderly woman who had decided to take her life one morning, but someone had stopped to feed the pigeons with her in the park and the kindness of that one stranger changed her mind and saved her life. We never know what is in another person’s heart. What level of pain they may be going through. And in some cases, the pain may be so great that living no longer seems an option to them.

We may never know the sometimes immense consequences upon another, of an unkind word, a thoughtless deed, or a hasty decision made from an unexamined heart.

Each day, everyone of us, has a new opportunity to make a huge difference in this world. If I had one dream for humanity, it would be that tomorrow morning we would all wake up with amnesia. We would then see the world for the first time, with new eyes, the way a new born baby sees it, except that we would be in a grown up body.

We would have no conception of what was considered beautiful or good or important according to society’s ridiculous standard of worth. Everything and everyone would be a blessed opportunity for us, just the way they are.

Life would be waiting with another possibility to be all that we could be. Another opportunity to practice the gift of kindness in every moment. Another chance to rise above our mere mortal existence and for that one grand moment in time to walk among the gods. Another day to love.


"Spread love everywhere you go: First of all in your own house… let no one ever come to you without leaving better and happier. Be the living expression of God’s kindness; kindness in your face, kindness in your eyes, kindness in your smile."

Mother Teresa


The junior executive had been complaining to his wife of aches and pains. Neither one could account for his trouble. Arriving home from work one night, he informed her, "I finally discovered why I’ve been feeling so miserable. We got some ultra-modern office furniture two weeks ago and I just learned today that I’ve been sitting in the wastebasket."


Seen on a headstone in a Ribbesford, England, cemetery:

Anna Wallace

The children of Israel wanted bread, and the Lord sent them manna.

Old clerk Wallace wanted a wife, and the Devil sent him Anna.


A lawyer had successfully handled a difficult law case for a wealthy friend. Following the happy outcome of the case, the friend and client called on the lawyer, expressed his appreciation of his work and handed him a handsome Moroccan leather wallet.

The lawyer looked at the wallet in astonishment and handed it back with a sharp reminder that a wallet could not possible compensate him for his services. "My fee for that work, " acidly snapped the attorney, "is five hundred dollars." The client opened the wallet, removed a one-thousand dollar bill, replaced it with a five-hundred dollar bill and handed it back to the lawyer with a smile.


"Happy laughter and family voices in the home will keep more kids off the streets at night than the strictest curfew."



    At age 4 success is . . . not peeing in your pants.

    At age 12 success is . . . having friends.

    At age 16 success is . . . having a drivers license.

    At age 20 success is . . . having sex.

    At age 35 success is . . . having money.

    At age 50 success is . . . having money.

    At age 60 success is . . . having sex.

    At age 70 success is . . . having a drivers license.

    At age 75 success is . . . having friends.

    At age 80 success is . . . not peeing in your pants.


She said, my mother is a typical Jewish mother. Once she was on Jury duty…

They sent her home. She insisted SHE was guilty.


What the Store-employees really mean…

1. "Can I help you get a size?" Don’t touch that, I just spent an hour folding it and I don’t need your hands messing it up again.

2. "Do you need help with anything?" Quick, my manager is coming around the corner and I need to look busy.

3. "Welcome to <<Store Name Here>>" Good, another customer to mess up my entire store just to buy a pair of socks.

4. "Have a nice day!" Now that you ruined mine

5. "Thank you for shopping at <<Store Name Here>>" Thanks for emptying your wallet with us!

6. "Do you need a shopping cart to help you carry your items?" The more you can carry, the more you can buy!

7. "I love your shirt!  Where did you get it?" Your shirt is much nicer than the clothes we sell here, why are you even shopping here?

8. "Can I help you get something down?" I’ll get a ladder and put it up for you since this other nice customer put in the absolute wrong place.

9. "Don’t worry about folding it, I can do it" You would just mess it up again if you folded it.

10. "No, we don’t have any more in the back" I just don’t want to check


"It’s surprising how many persons go through life without ever recognizing that their feelings toward other people are largely determined by their feelings toward themselves, and if you’re not comfortable within yourself, you can’t be comfortable with others."

Sidney J. Harris


Stay well, do good work, and have fun.


Ray Mitchell

Indianapolis, Indiana

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://raykiwsp.multiply.com/journal currently there are about 1500 readers from all over the world.

Ray’s Daily is suspended once again

NOTE: Ray’s Daily publication will be suspended for a day or so while Ray goes to the hospital for his heart catheter exam.


A strong positive attitude will create more miracles than any wonder drug.

Patricia Neal




Neal is right and I’ll tell you a positive attitude is a lot cheaper than today’s medications. I also find that others respond well when you avoid complaint and worry, this has been especially true during my many medical adventures. If you can stay in relative good humor while dealing with what ever comes in a positive manner those around you are glad to be with you and go out of their way to help you.

Maybe I am more fortunate than others since I have had so much experience with situations that might have been much worse then they were. I have learned that worry is just not worth it, in fact excessive worry can actually create real problems. I know it is not often easy to avoid worry but I find that if I concentrate on the world around me, the people I meet and how I might make their lives a little easier I don’t have too much time to be concerned about myself.

I don’t mean to be harsh but I sometimes feel we would all be better off with a lot more selflessness and a lot less selfishness. So I am ready for my next opportunity to stimulate the economy by participating in more of the health industries high tech offerings. Oh and by the way, before I forget, I hope they find something to bring my energy back without requiring some painful remedy, but what ever will be will be and I’ll make the best of it.

Here is a poem that has real meaning, I hope you enjoy its message.



If the day looks kinder gloomy

And your chances kinder slim,

If the situation’s puzzlin’

And the prospect’s awful grim,

If perplexities keep pressin’

Till hope is nearly gone,

Just bristle up and grit your teeth

And keep on keepin’ on.


Frettin’ never wins a fight

And fumin’ never pays;

There ain’t no use in broodin’

In these pessimistic ways;

Smile just kinder cheerfully

Though hope is nearly gone,

And bristle up and grit your teeth

And keep on keepin’ on.


There ain’t no use in growlin’

And grumblin’ all the time,

When music’s ringin’ everywhere

And everything’s a rhyme.

Just keep on smilin’ cheerfully

If hope is nearly gone,

And bristle up and grit your teeth

And keep on keepin’ on.

Author Unkown


It is not good for all our wishes to be filled; through sickness we recognize the value of health; through evil, the value of good; through hunger, the value of food; through exertion, the value of rest.

Greek Proverb



Never continue dating anyone who is rude to the waiter.

Any and all compliments can be handled by simply saying "Thank you" though it helps if you say it with a Southern accent.

Some people are working backstage, some are playing in the orchestra, some are on-stage singing, some are in the audience as critics, some are there to applaud. Know who and where you are.

When baking, follow directions. When cooking, go by your own taste.

The five most essential words for a healthy, vital relationship: "I apologize" and "You are right".

When you make a mistake, make amends immediately. It’s easier to eat crow while it’s still warm

I’ve learned to pick my battles; I ask myself, Will this matter one year from now? How about one month? One week? One day?

If you woke up breathing, congratulations! You have another chance!

Living well really is the best revenge. Being miserable because of a bad or former relationship just proves that the other person was right about you.

Be really nice to your friends because you never know when you are going to need them to empty your bed urinal and hold your hand.

Never under estimate the kindness of your fellow man.

And finally… Being happy doesn’t mean everything’s perfect, it just means you’ve decided to see beyond the imperfections.


Puritanism: The haunting fear that someone, somewhere may be happy.


George loves the race track. One day he was there betting on the ponies and nearly losing his shirt when he noticed this priest who stepped out onto the track and blessed the forehead of one of the horses lining up for the 4th race. Lo and behold, this horse – a very long shot – won the race. George was most interested to see what the priest did the next race. Sure enough, he watched the priest step out onto the track as the 5th race horses lined up, and placed his blessing on the forehead of one of the horses. George made a beeline for the window and placed a small bet on the horse. Again, even though another long shot, the horse the priest had blessed won the race. George collected his winnings and anxiously waited to see which horse the priest bestowed his blessing on for the 6th race. The priest showed, blessed a horse, George bet on it, and won! George was elated.

As the day went on, the priest continued blessing one of the horses, and it always came in first. George began to pull in some serious money, and by the last race, he knew his wildest dreams were going to come true.

He made a quick stop at the ATM and withdrew every penny he owned, and awaited the priest’s blessing that would tell him which horse to place the bet on.

True to his pattern, the priest stepped out onto the track before the last race and blessed the forehead, eyes, ears and hooves of one of the horses. George placed his bet – every cent he owned – and watched the horse come in dead last. George was dumbfounded. He made his way to the track, and when he found the priest, he demanded, "What happened, Father? All day you blessed horses and they won. The last race, you bless a horse and he loses. Now I’ve lost my life savings, thanks to you!!"

The priest nodded wisely and said, "That’s the problem with you Protestants…you can’t tell the difference between a simple blessing and the Last Rites!"


She said: If you want breakfast in bed, sleep in the kitchen.


Adam was talking to God one day and he said, God, why did you make Eve so beautiful with nice long blonde hair?

God replied, Adam, I made like that so you would love her.

Adam asked, god, why did you make Eve so beautiful we such a nice curvy body?

God replied, Adam, I made Eve like that so you would love her.

Adam then asked, god, why did you make Eve so stupid?

God said Adam I made Eve like that so she’d love you!!


When you learn to distinguish between the container and the contents, you will have attained wisdom.

Idries Shah


Stay well, do good work, and have fun.


Ray Mitchell

 Indianapolis, Indiana

 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://raykiwsp.multiply.com/journal currently there are about 1500 readers from all over the world.

Ray is with the vampires!

"It is far more impressive when others discover your good qualities without your help." 

Judith Martin




My week continues to be dominated by visits to health facilities, this morning I had a blood draw and I will have another tomorrow morning as part of the do it yourself preop procedures leading up to next weeks hospital adventure. The blood tests are to determine my Lovenox shot requirements before my Cardiac Catheter exam on Tuesday.

As many of you know I have been somewhat out of circulation recently due to all that is going on. However I did attend my Kiwanis Club meeting yesterday morning and was surprised when they presented me with the clubs Kiwanian of the Year award. While I was grateful for the honor I felt others were more deserving, I wish I could have done more. I find that service club membership provides life enrichment through the friends you make, the services you render and the things you learn that you would miss otherwise. Allowing me to participate is the big reward and recognition is the unneeded icing on the cake.


I hope you will understand that I have another appointment and I will be off in a few minutes so I am again dipping into reprints. I promise that after I get repaired I’ll do a better job.



Ray’s Daily first published September 25, 2001

It was on this day in 1789 that the U.S. Congress led by James Madison, approved 12 amendments to the Constitution. Ten of these amendments, which were ratified by the states in 1791, are known as the Bill of Rights. As we take the steps needed to protect our citizens from attack by terrorists we will need to balance our actions with the constitution that has served us so well in the past.


Melinda tells us:

The man whispered, "God, speak to me"

And a meadowlark sang.

But the man did not hear.


So the man yelled "God, speak to me"

And the thunder & lightning rolled across the sky.

But the man did not listen.


The man looked around and said, "God, let me see you." And a star shined brightly.

But the man did not see.


And, the man shouted, "God, show me a miracle" And a life was born.

But the man did not notice.


So, the man cried out in despair, "Touch me, God, and let me know you are here"

Whereupon, God reached down and touched the man.

But the man brushed the butterfly away and walked on.


I found this to be a great reminder that God is always around us in the little and simple things that we take for granted. .even in our electronic age . . . so I would like to add one more:


The man cried "God, I need your help" . . . and an e-mail arrived reaching out with good news and encouragement.

But the man deleted it and continued crying…..


The good news is that you are loved. Don’t miss out on a blessing because it isn’t packaged the way that you expect.


It’s as easy as 3.14159265358979323846264338327950…


A man went to the doctor complaining of insomnia. The doctor gave him a thorough examination, found absolutely nothing physically wrong with him, and then told him, "Listen, if you ever expect to cure your insomnia, you just have to stop taking your troubles to bed with you."

"I know" said the man, "but I can’t. My wife refuses to sleep alone."


An optimist thinks that this is the best possible world. A pessimist fears that this is true.


An Irishman, a Mexican and a blonde guy were doing construction work on scaffolding on the 20th floor of a building. They were eating lunch and the Irishman said, "Corned beef and cabbage! If I get corned beef and cabbage one more time for lunch I’m going to jump off this building."

The Mexican opened his lunch box and exclaimed, "Burritos again!  If I get burritos one more time I’m going to jump off, too."

The blonde opened his lunch and said, "Bologna again.  If I get bologna one more time I’m going to jump off, too."

The next day the Irishman opened his lunch box, saw corned and cabbage and jumped to his death.  The Mexican opened his lunch, saw a burrito and jumped too. The blonde opened his lunch, saw the bologna and jumped to his death as well.

At the funeral the Irishman’s wife was weeping.  She said, "If I’d known how really tired he was of corned beef and cabbage I never would have given it to him again!"  The Mexican’s wife also wept and said, "I could have given him tacos or enchiladas! I didn’t realize he hated Burritos so much." Everyone turned and stared at the blonde’s wife.

"Hey, don’t look at me," she said, "He makes his own lunch."


Talk is cheap because supply exceeds demand.


Have you noticed, I am a nutritional overachiever.


There were two buddies, one with a Doberman Pinscher and the other with a Chihuahua. The guy with the Doberman Pinscher says to his friend, "Let’s go over to that restaurant and get something to eat."

The guy with the Chihuahua says, "We can’t go in there. We’ve got dogs with us."

The buddy with the Doberman Pinscher says, "Just follow my lead."

They walk over to the restaurant, the guy with the Doberman Pinscher puts on a pair of dark glasses and he starts to walk in. The bouncer at the door says, "Sorry, mac, no pets allowed."

The man with the Doberman Pinscher says, "You don’t understand. This is my seeing-eye-dog."

The bouncer says, "A Doberman Pinscher?"

He answers, "Yes, they’re using them now; they’re very good and protect me from robbers, too."

The man at the door says, "Come on in."

The buddy with the Chihuahua figures, "What the heck," so he puts on a pair of dark glasses and starts to walk in.

Once again the bouncer says, "Sorry, pal, no pets allowed."

The guy with the Chihuahua says, "You don’t understand. This is my seeing-eye dog."

The bouncer at the door says, "A Chihuahua?"

The man with the Chihuahua says, "A Chihuahua?????? They gave me a Chihuahua?!"


Love is grand. Divorce is a hundred grand.


A couple of hunters are out in the woods in the deep south when one of them falls to the ground. He doesn’t seem to be breathing, and his eyes are rolled back in his head.

The other guy whips out his cell phone and calls 911. He gasps to the operator, "My friend is dead! What can I do?"

The operator, in a calm and soothing voice, says, "Alright, take it easy. I can help. First, let’s make sure he’s dead."

There is silence, and then a gun shot is heard.

The hunter comes back on the line. "OK. Now what??"


If you are a terror to many, then beware of many.



Stay well, do good work, and have fun.


Ray Mitchell

 Indianapolis, Indiana

 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://raykiwsp.multiply.com/journal currently there are about 1500 readers from all over the world.

I am back for a few days.

Treasure the love you receive above all. It will survive long after your gold and good health have vanished.

Og Mandingo




I had my Nuclear Stress Test as scheduled yesterday and the results were inconclusive so we move on to the next step which is one of my least favorite things, a Cardiac Catheter exam of the inside of my heart and its tributaries. It is scheduled for next Tuesday since it takes a few days to clear out my blood thinners and to transition me to my self administered $100 a piece Lovenox shots. I have done it before and the shots are painless but the cost of having to do 11 or so is not, since there is no insurance coverage for members of the proverbial doughnut hole gang. For those of you outside of the US that means that my pharmaceutical insurance has maxed out and it will cost me $1000 or more for the shots.

I hope that everyone is grateful that I am providing so much economic stimulus to the health industry. Once I get past the heart stuff I’ll move on to the colon stuff, the blood stuff, the brain stuff and the kidney stone stuff. But as always life goes on and at least I can rationalize my reduced activity as being because of Doctor’s orders. Fortunately my reduced time with friends and colleagues is off set by the friends I’ll make in the medical social world.

So it is smile and move on being ever grateful that I have Medicare and supplemental insurance for if I did not, as so many in our country do not, I would have been bankrupt long ago with the golden years changed to the poverty years. I wish everyone was as fortunate as I am for every time they patch me up my life moves on a little better than it was before. I have found that the secret is to ignore the past, survive the present and then move on with a smile knowing that the future is yours.

Ralph Marston wrote about moving on years ago, here is what he said:

When the disappointments come, when you’ve been knocked down and tossed around, get back up and move on ahead. After all, you’ve paid a heavy price to get this far, so the best option is to really make it count by moving forward from where you are.

When everything has happily gone your way, and you’re sitting on top of the world, get back up and move on ahead. Make your accomplishments truly count by putting them to positive, productive use.

Whatever comes your way, whether good or bad, whether joyous or disappointing, get back up and move on ahead. It is always the best response. Feeling sorry for yourself after a setback will only serve to extend and magnify the disappointment. Feeling smug and arrogant after a victory will drain the value out of what you have just accomplished.

Whatever has happened, don’t spend too long looking backward. Look forward, step positively, confidently forward, and move on ahead.


While we may not be able to control all that happens to us, we can control what happens inside us.

Ben Franklin


Since we opened with a medical report I thought you might enjoy these excerpts from patient’s charts.

Rectal examination revealed a normal size thyroid.

Occasional, constant, infrequent headaches.

Patient was seen in consultation by Dr. Smith, who felt we should sit on the abdomen and I agree.

By the time he was admitted, his rapid heart had stopped, and he was feeling better.

Patient has chest pain if she lies on her left side for over a year.

On the second day the knee was better and on the third day it had completely disappeared.

The patient has been depressed ever since she began seeing me in 1983.


"A great answer is what you think of later."

Sam Ewing


A man once asked his Rabbi to Explain the meaning of "Talmudic Reasoning."

The Rabbi replied: "Well, it’s not too easy to explain, but I think I can demonstrate it to you and you will get the point. I will ask you a simple question and you give the answer.  Are you ready?"

The man was ready, so the Rabbi continued: "Imagine that two men come out of a chimney, one is dirty, the other clean. Which one takes a bath?"  The intrigued listener immediately replied: "That’s easy, Rabbi. The dirty one takes the bath."

"Not so," said the Rabbi. "The Talmud would explain that when the men came out, the dirty one looked at the clean one and saw a clean face.   Meanwhile the clean one looked at the dirty one and saw a dirty face."

A knowing look, complete with broad smile, flashed onto the man’s face. The Rabbi continued, "Now tell me which one takes the bath?"  The answer was quick and sure. "Now I get it Rabbi, the clean one takes the bath!"

The Rabbi looked just a bit unhappy, but he answered patiently, "No. You see, the Talmud would go on to ask: ‘How could two men come out of a chimney and one be clean and the other dirty?"


"A sobering thought: What if, right at this very moment, I am living up to my full potential?"

– Jane Wagner


One afternoon, a woman was in her back yard hanging the laundry when an old, tired-looking dog wandered into the yard. The woman could tell from the dog’s collar and well-fed belly that he had a home. But when she walked into the house, the dog followed her, sauntered down the hall and fell asleep in a corner. An hour later, he went to the door, and the woman let him out.

The next day the dog was back. He resumed his position in the hallway and slept for an hour. This continued for several weeks. Curious, the woman pinned a note to his collar: "Every afternoon, your dog comes to my house for a nap."

The next day he arrived with a different note pinned to his collar: "We have ten children. He’s trying to catch up on his sleep.


"Any married man should forget his mistakes. There’s no point in two people remembering the same thing…"


"When parents talk about the depression of the empty nest, they’re not mourning the passing of all those wet towels on the floor, or the music that numbs your teeth, or even the bottle of capless shampoo dribbling down the shower drain. They’re upset because they have gone from supervisor of a child’s life to spectator. It’s like being the vice-president of the United States."

Erma Bombeck


I may not be able to buy happiness, but I still want the money.


A husband and wife were driving down a country lane on their way to visit some friends. They came to a muddy patch in the road and the car became bogged. After a few minutes of trying to get the car out by themselves, they saw a young farmer coming down the lane, driving some oxen before him. He stopped when he saw the couple in trouble and offered to pull the car out of the mud for $50. The husband accepted and minutes later the car was free.

The farmer turned to the husband and said, "You know, you’re the tenth car I’ve helped out of the mud today."

The husband looked around at the fields incredulously and asked the farmer, "When do you have time to plow your land? At night?"

"No," the young farmer replied seriously, "Night is when I put the water in the hole."


What does love look like?

It has the hands to help others. It has the feet to hasten to the poor and needy.

It has eyes to see misery and want. It has the ears to hear the sighs and sorrows of men.

That is what love looks like.

St. Augustine


Stay well, do good work, and have fun.


Ray Mitchell

 Indianapolis, Indiana

 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://raykiwsp.multiply.com/journal currently there are about 1500 readers from all over the world.

Ray’s return has been delayed

If I had my way I’d make health catching instead of disease.

Robert Ingersoll




NOTE: Ray’s return will be delayed. He returned from his assignment a little worse for wear. They have him going to the hospital early Wednesday for a Nuclear Stress Test to see what can be done to get his energy back. He will be fasting with no caffeine tomorrow (the problem is fasting seems to go really slow) which is the reason for the delay. If he can get his act together the Daily will be back on Thursday, if he can’t I’ll let him wait until next Monday. I’ll send out something today but I’ll wait for him to get back before sending more.

Ray’s Computer


September 21, 2001

Before my world changed last week I had planned on flying to New York today in order to join in the celebration of the progress made towards the goals set by the UN World Summit for Children in 1990. We would have shared with leaders from all over the world how we were working together to build a better world. It is ironic that today we are trying to find out how we can hold the world together.

My friends who have knowledge and expertise about the situation in Afghanistan are worried about how we, and our allies will respond. They support the Presidents apparent restraint, as a well as the effort to find an effective counter-terrorism solution. I have nothing to offer other than my hope that we will not find ourselves in a Holy War between the Muslin and non-Muslim world.

In the meantime I suggest giving ourselves a break this weekend. If you are like I am, you have been bombarded by newscast after newscast that have reported again and again on the tragic events of last week. I am already in pain; it is now time to look towards solutions. I am going to watch my grandchildren play soccer, and express my thanks that they are ok so far. I am going to dine with friends, and express thanks that I can spend time with them. I am going to relax and enjoy a few hours of solitude. The result will reinforce my understanding of the great value of my everyday life. It is through a clear understanding of what we hold dear that we will understand that the sacrifices we face in the months and years ahead are of little import by comparison.


When we honestly ask ourselves which person in our lives means the most to us, we often find that it is those who, instead of giving much advice, solutions, or cures, have chosen rather to share our pain and touch our wounds with a gentle and tender hand. The friend who can be silent with us in a moment of despair or confusion, who can stay with us in an hour of grief and bereavement, who can tolerate not knowing, not curing, not healing and face with us the reality of our powerlessness, that is a friend who cares.

Henri Nouwen "Out of Solitude"


We should manage our fortunes as we do our health – enjoy it when good, be patient when it is bad, and never apply violent remedies except in an extreme necessity.

Francois de La Rochefoucauld


"Are you my caddie?" asked MacTavish.

"Aye, sir," replied the boy.

"And are you any good at finding lost balls?"

"Aye, sir."

"Right, then. Find one and let’s get the game started."


"I have enough money to last me the rest of my life unless I buy something."

Jackie Mason


If you want long friendships, develop a short memory.


A six-year-old ran up and down the supermarket aisles shouting frantically, "Marian, Marian!"

Finally reunited with his mother, he was chided by her, "You shouldn’t call me ‘Marian.’  I’m your mother, you know."

"I know," said the child, wise beyond his years, "but the store is full of mothers!"


"The mind is its own place, and in itself can make a heaven of Hell, a hell of Heaven."

John Milton



NOTICE: You may wish to delay reading this until you have more free time.

1. I believe that if anything is worth doing, it would have been done already.

2. I shall never move quickly, except to avoid more work or find excuses.

3. I will never rush into a job without a lifetime of consideration.

4. I shall meet all of my deadlines directly in proportion to the amount of bodily injury I could expect to receive from missing them.

5. I firmly believe that tomorrow holds the possibility for new technologies, astounding discoveries, and a reprieve from my obligations.

6. I truly believe that all deadlines are unreasonable regardless of the amount of time given.

7. If at first I don’t succeed, there is always next year.

8. I shall always decide not to decide, unless of course I decide to change my mind.

9. I shall always begin, start, initiate, take the first step, and/or write the first word, when I get around to it.

10. I will never put off tomorrow, what I can forget about forever.


"Great opportunities to help others seldom come, but small ones come daily."

Ivy Baker Priest


Once upon a time there lived three men: a doctor, a chemist, and an engineer. All three had offended the king and were sentenced to die on the same day.

The day of the execution arrived, and the doctor was led up to the guillotine. As he strapped the doctor to the guillotine, the executioner asked, "Head up or head down?"

"Head up," said the doctor.

"Blindfold or no blindfold?"

"No blindfold."

So the executioner raised the blade, and z-z-z-z-ing! Down came the blade — and stopped barely an inch above the doctor’s neck. Well, the law stated that if an execution didn’t succeed the first time the prisoner had to be released, so the doctor was set free.

Then the chemist was led up to the guillotine.

"Head up or head down?" said the executioner.

"Head up."

"Blindfold or no blindfold?"

"No blindfold."

So the executioner raised the blade, and z-z-z-z-ing! Down came the blade — and stopped an inch above the chemist’s neck. Well, the law stated that if the execution didn’t succeed the first time the prisoner had to be released, so the chemist was set free.

Finally the engineer was led up to the guillotine.

"Head up or head down?"

"Head up."

"Blindfold or no blindfold?"

"No blindfold."

So the executioner raised the blade, but before he could cut the rope, the engineer yelled out:

"WAIT! I see what the problem is!"


"How far you go in life depends on your being tender with the young, compassionate with the aged, sympathetic with the striving, and tolerant of the weak and strong. Because someday in your life you will have been all of these."

George Washington Carver


Stay well, do good work, and have fun.


 Ray Mitchell

 Indianapolis, Indiana

 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://raykiwsp.multiply.com/journal currently there are about 1500 readers from all over the world.

It really is up to you!

“It is our choices that show what we truly are, far more than our abilities.”

J K Rowling




NOTE: Ray will be on special assignment for the balance of the week. He is expected to return on Monday the 21st so the Daily will suspend publication until then.


As many of you know I spend a lot of my time with other folks assisting them as they explore the ways they can brighten their future and enrich their lives. Most often it happens when an individual has decided that it is time for a career change and/or to find ways to enjoy the years ahead. What surprises me is how many of these people really don’t know themselves. Too many exist in a world that is defined by their employment, family and day to day activities; they play their part every day, day after day. These are good people that have learned to get by but who start to wonder is this really all there is. Yep, when we dig the same trench day after day it soon becomes a rut, and dug deep enough it can be really hard to imagine crawling out of it.

When I ask people what really makes them happy, what intrigues them and what dreams did they had that they have forgotten, they often struggle to come up with the answers. We will spend hours on more than one occasion just talking about the times in their life when they were doing something that made them happy. We explore the kinds of people and events that have pleased them in the past and we discuss alternatives that might bring them happiness in the future. Our lives don’t have to be mundane and when they are we need to take responsibility and understand it is ourself who has chosen a life with little sizzle.

What really pleases me is that so many have broken out of their shells. These were folks who decided to crawl out of the rut by implementing plans that took them to a place that enriched their lives and continued to feed their desire for happiness. As I have said before, I really feel sad when I see someone trying to hold up the coffin lid as they holler “Wait! I haven’t started to live yet.”

The wise Gretchen Rubin suggests that we do some self assessment so that we can learn where we want to go. Here is what she wrote:

How well do you know yourself?

Two of my favorite Secrets of Adulthood remind me to Be Gretchen: “Just because something is fun for someone else, doesn’t mean it’s fun for you – and vice versa” and “You can choose what you do, but you can’t choose what you like to do.”

People assume that they in fact do enjoy what they think they should enjoy – e.g., they enjoy going to the theater, because going to the theater is a fun thing to do. Nope! Not true. There are so many “fun” things that I don’t enjoy one bit, like skiing, drinking wine, going to concerts, eating pasta, shopping. And I love to do many things that other people dread doing – cleaning out closets, for example. I beg my friends to let me help them clean out their closets.

My friend Michael Melcher wrote an outstanding (and quite funny) book called The Creative Lawyer ; he also has a terrific blog.

Here’s a quiz, lightly adapted from The Creative Lawyer, to help you figure out your interests. Not what you wish interested you, but what actually interests you.

1. What part of the newspaper do you read first?

2. What are three books you’ve read in the past year?

3. As a child, what did you do in your free time?

4. What’s a goal that has been on your list for a few years?

5. What do you actually do with your free time? [This is perhaps the most helpful question. I finally switched careers from law to writing when it dawned on me that I was always writing books in my free time.]

6. What types of activities energize you?

7. What famous people intrigue you?

You need to pay close attention to yourself. The better you understand your true likes and dislikes, the better able you are to make decisions – in work and leisure – that will make you happy. It’s not possible to build a happy life, filled with enthusiasm and engagement, based on the way that you wish you were. For better or worse, we’re all stuck with ourselves.


“The future is not a result of choices among alternative paths offered by the present, but a place that is created–created first in the mind and will, created next in activity. The future is not some place we are going to, but one we are creating.”


Heard at the senior center:

My supply of brain cells is finally down to a manageable size.

My secrets are safe with my friends because they can’t remember them either.

My joints are more accurate meteorologists than the national weather service.


"If you listen when you hear and look when you see then you will never be deaf or blind to an opportunity."



She said: "I’ve got 3 TVs, cable, & a satellite dish; I have 3 phone lines in the house, a cell phone & one in the car, plus a pager.

I use 2 computers, 3 ISPs and a fax. I subscribe to two daily papers & one weekly one. I watch both the local & network news every evening.

And my kids have the nerve to tell me I’m out of touch!"


"If you were arrested for being kind……..would there be enough evidence to convict you?"


The banker had called the man in to talk about his account.

"Your financial affairs are in a big mess! Your wife constantly overdraws your account. She is behind in her charge accounts at the department store, and her check stubs are all added wrong. So…why don’t you talk to her about it?"

"Because…." said the man, "I would rather argue with you than with her."


If you are what you do, then when you don’t you aren’t.

Wayne Dyer


She said: I pulled into a crowded parking lot and rolled down the car windows to make sure my golden retriever had fresh air.

She was stretched out on the back seat, and I wanted to impress upon her that she must remain there.

I walked to the curb backward, pointing my finger at the car and saying emphatically, "Now you stay….. Do you hear me?… Stay!.. Stay!"

The driver of a nearby car, perhaps noting that I am a blonde, gave me a strange look and said.

"Why don’t you just put it in park?"


You must arrange in advance for pleasant memories.


The customer in the Italian restaurant was so pleased that he asked to speak to the chef. The owner proudly led him into the kitchen and introduced him to the chef.

"Your veal parmigiana was superb," the customer said. "I just spent a month in Italy, and yours is better than any I ever had over there."

"Naturally," the chef said. "Over there, they use domestic cheese. Ours is imported."


Too often we do not see things as they are; we see things as we are."

Stuart Avery Gold


A woman is getting on a bus when, just in front of her, a man gets up from his seat. She thinks to herself, "Here’s another man trying to keep up the customs of a patriarchal society by offering a poor, defenseless woman his seat," so she pushes him back onto the seat. A few minutes later, the man tries to get up again. She is still insulted so she refuses to let him up again.

Look, the man says, "Look, lady, you’ve got to let me get up. I’m twelve blocks past my stop already!"


“Your life is the sum result of all the choices you make, both consciously and unconsciously. If you can control the process of choosing, you can take control of all aspects of your life. You can find the freedom that comes from being in charge of yourself.”

Robert F. Bennett


Stay well, do good work, and have fun.

Ray Mitchell

Indianapolis, Indiana

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://raykiwsp.multiply.com/journal currently there are about 1500 readers from all over the world.

They are gone, it is up to us now!

“Men are respectable only as they respect”

Ralph Waldo Emerson



Eight years ago today we shared in the horror of the loss of thousands of lives as terror descended on our nation in the form of violent action without regard to the innocence of the victims. The horror brought our country together and most of the rest of the world like never before. People in all walks of life shared in the pain of the loss of so many resulting in a great outpouring sympathy and patriotism, patriotism that was founded on our belief in the sanctity of life and the freedom of all. We as a people were one.


Over the recent past too many seem to have forgotten what we were and what we might be. The divisiveness that has been the result of the behavior of those who would rather tear us apart rather than find ways we can build together is frightening. It has gone so far that extremists have even called for violence. There are hate mongers both on the left and the right who have become anarchy pied pipers leading people to thoughtless action. History has taught us that when hate replaces reason society ends up paying a terrible price.


When so many of our fellow citizens lost their lives there was a resounding commitment to the principles that had put us in good stead for centuries. What happened? When did so many see anger, violence and hate as the solutions to our very real problems? And why do so many of us stand mute rather than tell all that enough is enough?


I would hope that my fellow citizens will take time today to reflect on what has been going around us. Do we not owe those who lost their lives on 9-11 through the acts of terrorism something better? I think we do and I hope you do too.


I am again forgoing humor today as I have done on 9-11 ever since that tragic day almost ten years ago. But I am taking the liberty of reprinting excerpts from my 2007 9-11 Daily.


September 11th is really hard for me, it is not just the pain I feel for the loss of so many lives in the Twin Towers on that fateful day six years ago, it is also the lives that have been lost since, both military and civilian. As I was thinking about writing something appropriate today I decided to look back at what I wrote years ago. I know the following will anger some of you as I am sure it did many when I first put it in the daily. I guess if I had to describe myself both then and now it would be that I am a Lugar Republican. I have always found Senator Dick Lugar to be the voice of reason. What follows is my heartfelt feelings of four years ago and I feel much the same way today, I just wish I had been wrong.


You do not have to respond. Each of us deals with 9/11 in our own way, I just wish we would have stuck to chasing the terrorists instead of getting bogged down in Iraq. Anyway here is what I wrote in the 9/11, 2003 Daily.


We will never be the same as a result of the tragic events of two years ago. I am saddened that it now appears that the legacy of those who lost their lives is one of continued tragic events.


I wish the legacy of those who died was our turning to each other during these difficult times as we redirect our energy to the building of a better world for future generations. Just imagine what could have been done for education, healthcare, infrastructure repair, and more if we did not have to spend even more than we have already to stabilize Iraq. We might have seen a world where we built allies through a demonstration of our values, and not one where we have gone so far backwards that we now have to buy our friends.


It is not too late. Each of us can contribute to a living memorial to the 9/11 victims by helping to build the society in which they would have liked to have lived. Each of us, conservative, liberal, Christian, non-Christian, all of us, can in our small way build our personal memorial to the great loss we have experienced. If we do the victims of 9/11 will not have died in vain.


United We Stand!


This is a story of a historic event,

And this is the way that it went.


An airplane crashed thru building one,

Next thing people know two was done.


Now both buildings down of the twin towers,

While people wait for hours and hours.


They watch the police and firefighters strive,

And see if their loved ones are still alive.


Now there are two lights where the towers once stood,

And they shine very bright thru the neighborhood.


This event did not break apart the U.S.A.,

Because we are closer and closer to each other everyday.


Author Unknown


I don’t know who wrote the poem and I am led to believe it was written some time ago. Please join me in doing all we can to make the last line real for if we continue to be torn apart we may not ever be able to come back together.


Think not forever of yourselves, O Chiefs, nor of your own generation. Think of continuing generations of our families, think of our grandchildren and of those yet unborn, whose faces are coming from beneath the ground.

T. S. Eliot


Stay well, do good work, and have fun.

 Ray Mitchell

Indianapolis, Indiana

Management is not responsible for duplicates from previous dailies.

The editor is somewhat senile.


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://raykiwsp.multiply.com/journal currently there are about 1500 readers from all over the world.

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