Posts Tagged With: human nature


For days I’ve tried to fit my camera cord into the trapazoid slot on my camera to unload pictures into my computer. The same cord also charges my camera battery. It wouldn’t fit. It defied logic. How could a cord I use every day and keep in the same place next to my computer, suddenly not fit. How could I  misplace something I use every day that stays next to my computer? All week, I unloaded pictures by removing the SD disk and plugging it directly into my computer. Last night, the camera battery went dead.

Desperately I searched the zillionth time.  I picked up every item from my three desks one by one again. The light bulb went off. I had used my Click Free back-up drive a week earlier. Sure enough, I’d put the camera cord into the Click Free box and the Click Free cord stayed next to my computer. Like electrical outlets, is it too much to ask that they be standardized?  It would save a lot of hair-pulling.

On the frustration meter, my credit cards were compromised over Christmas and I got new ones in the mail yesterday! Oh, happy day. It left me feeling very vulnerable when I didn’t have those little pieces of plastic for ten days.  However, it made me apply for two more cards knowing I will be going to Turkey and our trip lit explained that Turkey businesses like different cards, MasterCard and Discover. Wow. I got lower interest, wonderful rewards, and no charge for overseas ATM transactions on the Discover Card. Two reasons to celebrate.

Jubilation T Cornpone!!




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That first snow, at 5:00 a.m. surprised me. I’d never seen it that deep in Murphys. I wished my old friend Buster Reidel was still around to confer with. He would know how unique is was or wasn’t back to 1920. He used to advise me not to plant my tomatoes until after Frog Jump. He was keen about local weather patterns.

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Tree limbs bent over the roof and over the railing.

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The small wires that hold my summer shade cloth were totally encased in snow.

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It made for some pretty pictures.

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My housemate, Karen’s car, isn’t garaged. After a lot of melt, she braved the first day, and got out to the store for cigs. you can see where she was parked. Coming back was a different matter.

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She was all over the driveway getting back. But, it was a smarter choice because that partly melted snow is now ice.

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When the power went completely out, it was still light outside. People up here know to have a good supply of candles and flashlights. I covered the end of the table with an old tablecloth and set up the outage. I placed candles in strategic places in each room. We ate soup and bread for a light supper. People in the east probably chuckle at our unpreparedness for snow, but we do know how to weather a power outage.


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Meeting a cousin, Bob Moore, his poosslq, Leslie Nolan,  (or her poosslq depending on your point of view) and Leslie’s mother, Marilyn. at a coffee shop yesterday was so much fun, I forgot to take pictures. We talked about family members current, as in my sister suffering from brain cancer showing an improvement after a scary malaise from the radiation, to Bob’s wedding, so many years ago, how his brother Jim, met his wife, to other cousins, aunts, uncles and surprising stories in our family genealogy. Grandma Moore had her fist baby at age 15?  Did Uncle Leonard really take the first tank across the bridge at Remoggin, during WWII?

We don’t know all the answers, but aging gives a great perspective of the past. And I KNOW you are wondering about that poosslq word.

I worked the census for many years and during the 1970’s that word was used to describe …persons of opposite sex sharing living quarters.

Isn’t that a hoot?  Now we accept the normalcy of significant other. As, in my significant other, Jim Jaillet.

Later, I cooked a turkey breast so we could enjoy one of the best part’s of the feast, turkey sandwiches.  I must thank the Earl of Sandwich for that great repast.

Note:  working on a new computer after wirelessly loading every thing from my motor home computer and my home computer, to this one. It took forty-eight hours. Glitches are in store. It will take time to work them out but…I made the page.


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Today is play day. Jim and I are taking a day off to take pictures of an “endangered species”, old barns and miner’s cabins. I mistakenly thought yesterday was Saturday. We both worked in the motor home kitchen. yesterday. Thinned canned goods, tossed stuff we don’t use, etc.. I did the wash and worked on mending a rug and some paperwork and pictures, etc. Jim received an email from our friend Al Penta with a list of charities  that you DON’T want to support. This is the biggest “giving” season of the year. Be wary.

How many ways can you spell G R E E D?
SOMETHING TO THINK ABOUT BEFORE YOU MAKE CONTRIBUTIONS: As you open your pockets to do a good thing and make yourself feel good, please keep the following facts in mind:

The American Red CrossPresident and CEO Marsha J. Evans’

salary for the year was $651,957 plus expenses

MARCH OF DIMESIt is called the March of Dimes because

only a dime for every 1 dollar is given to the needy.

The United WayPresident Brian Gallagher

receives a $375,000 base salary along with numerous expense benefits.

UNICEFCEO Caryl M. Stern receives

$1,200,000 per year (100k per month) plus all expenses including a ROLLS ROYCE.

Less than 5 cents of your donated dollar goes to the cause.

GOODWILLCEO and owner Mark Curran profits $2.3 million a year. Goodwill is a very catchy name for his business.

You donate to his business and then he sells the items for PROFIT. He pays nothing for his products and pays his workers minimum wage! Nice Guy. $0.00 goes to help anyone! Stop giving to this man.

Instead, give it to ANY OF THE FOLLOWING


The Salvation ArmyCommissioner, Todd Bassett receives a small salary of only

$13,000 per year(plus housing) for managing this $2 billion dollar organization.

96 percent of donated dollars go to the cause.

The American LegionNational Commander receives a $0.00 zero salary. Your donations go to help Veterans and their families and youth!

The Veterans of Foreign WarsNational Commander receives a $0.00 zero salary.

Your donations go to help Veterans and their families and youth!

The Disabled American VeteransNational Commander receives a $0.00 zero salary. Your donations go to help Veterans and their families and youth!

The Military Order of PurpleHeartsNational Commander receives a $0.00 zero salary. Your donations go to help Veterans and their families and youth!

The Vietnam Veterans AssociationNational Commander receives a $0.00 zero salary.

Your donations go to help Veterans and their families and youth!

Make a Wish: For children’s last wishes.

100% goes to funding trips or special wishes for a dying child.

St. Jude Research Hospital

100% goes towards funding and helping Children with Cancer who have no insurance and cannot afford to pay.

Ronald McDonald Houses

All monies go to running the houses for parents who have critically ill Children in the hospital.

100% goes to housing, and feeding the families.

Lions Club International



Please share this with everyone you can.

I would like to add some information to the above. During our recent rim fire, the Red Cross performed poorly according to volunteers who worked the fire. They brought inadequate and moldy supplies, treated volunteers as though they were stupid and gave conflicting orders to volunteers who were on the scene working two days before the Red Cross even arrived. Most of the supplies came from local businesses. The Red Cross did very little. (Not every member was callous and arrogant.) I’m also reminded when we burned out, the Red Cross refused my dad a loan, not a handout, a loan.

Locally, our food bank is in desperate need of food this year in both Calaveras and Tuolumne Counties. They don’t have enough to give turkeys to needy families this year.

For international and local charities, Oxfam is one of the best. International Heifer, is another. (I hope I have that name right.) It is about supplying money to buy goats, chickens, a calf, etc. to enable people to help themselves, rather than handing them money or rice or wheat.

Finca makes small loans to people to allow them to start small businesses to become self-sufficient.

Covenant House provides food, clothing and housing for people in need. Not as big a  problem where the weather isn’t brutal.

Solar Cooking International supplies solar devices for cooking and pasteurizing water in countries with plenty of sun and not much money for fuel.

Our local Elks Club supports abused children.

Hope you’ll dig deep this year since childhood hunger in the United States is getting more serious with cuts to food stamps. Don’t wait for the holidays to open your wallet. Americans, by the way,  are the most giving, charitable people on earth.


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Farmers and ranchers in Nebraska built a sustainable, green-tech embracing barn right in the proposed path of the Keystone XL pipeline, symbolically blocking its progress while, at the same time, nicely highlighting why it simply isn’t needed.

These aren’t tree hugging hippies, these are landed ranchers and farmers who state in a video called “The Barn”  “TransCanada isn’t asking to do business with us. They tried to bully us,” the voice states.  “They told us it was a done deal, but they didn’t know much about Nebraskans.”

I’m headed to the Chiropractor this morning, early, and have shamelessly let Gas.2.0. write my blog for me this morning. I couldn’t find the video address to post. But, one final statement from the post. They know that it is oil not ethanol raising food prices, they know tar sands destroys land, and pipelines destroy towns. They can’t be bought.

My own thoughts on this event is that as the Federal Government fails us, states and people have to more and more take things into their own hands. Shame on you Obama if you allow this project to go through.

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Continuing my personal saga through the Upper Peninsula of Michigan, Bernice, Marie and I set out for Hardwood, where my father, myself and a brother were born. When I saw the Downtown Hardwood sign on the only store in this very small town, I chuckled a bit. This is it. Not even the original Robinette’s Store exists which was the unofficial “center” of town where everyone met, and exchanged a bit of gossip. “Don’t telephone, tell a Robinette,” was a tongue in cheek refrain.

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Even the post office is closed. In fact, the whole Main St. (Hwy M69) has been rerouted and changed since I lived here, not surprising since we are going back over 60 years ago. The warm-hearted people we knew and cared about, finding even distant old friends, seeing my generation now the elder citizens of the community, still makes a home place precious and significant.  With Bernice and Marie’s help, I was lucky enough to find some of them.  Thomas Wolf said “You Can Never Go Home Again.” He was wrong.

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Shirley Robinette Johnson was surprised that I remembered her Dad, Joe. I left Hardwood as an eight year old and walked into his store in 1974, a married woman with four children and said, “Hi Joe!  Do you know who I am?” He said, “Yes, your are Billy Moore’s kid.” Just like that. Shirley confirmed her dad had a great memory for people and names. Joe and my dad grew up together, hunted together and were great friends.

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Joe died in 1975. His son Marshall ran the store which burned down many years later. Shirley’s grand-daughter drew a picture of the store and the Robinette house right next to it.

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The house is still there.

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Our next stop, Betty Robinette Kerry gave us a warm welcome. Marie said, “The minute we left Shirley’s she must have called her sister.”  She did. Now it is the Hardwood Hotline, instead of telerobinette. Betty is so lively and energetic and fun to talk too.

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She has a good picture of her parents, Joe and Lou, that I tried to shoot through the glass with okay luck.

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Next, we visited my old home site where we burned out. I stood on the plot of our neighbors, Patsy Robinson’s house looking down the road. The left turn went to Bernice and Marie Cousineau’s family farm.  We lived straight ahead at the end of the road.  The school bus dropped us at Cousineau’s road.

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Some one bought our place and built a little camp on it. The fire scar is all grown over.

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Appropriately enough, someone cut a load of cedar post and stacked it across from where we lived. Appropriate because my dad cut, peeled, and sold pulp for the paper mills and there was always huge stacks of wood in various stages on our property. Between that income and our garden and hunting, we lived off the land. It was where my dad was happiest. My dad bought the “old Peronto” place of nine forties which is the common denominator around here. That is how Bernice and Marie speak of their land. Bernice has 9 forties. Marie is down to two forties. Everything measured by forties.

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We followed Massie Road to Warmuth’s place. The tar paper has been covered over with siding and a new expanded front attached and a new foundation.

img448My 1st Communion after the fire. We moved to Warmuth's  old two room shack.

This is it what it looked like when we lived there after the fire. We spent the summer there with my Uncle Marvin helping out while my dad looked for work in Iron Mountain and Escanaba. The Bishop didn’t get to rural areas like Hardwood every year. Every couple years, all the kids who missed, took First Communion together.

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The railroad followed M69.  Rails and cross ties are gone. My dad would deliver his wood here on the highway where it was picked up by rail and delivered to the mills. The Mill would send a check. On occasion, my dad would take us for a wild ride in his Model T on the tracks. The tires would line up perfectly with the rails and off we’d go, sailing, way too fast,  as far as Foster City.  “Don’t tell your mother,” he’d say. She thought it was dangerous and it probably was.

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That Hardwood Downtown store is owned by Maureen (Kerry) and Bob Meghinny. My brother had a mad crush on her when they attended school. “And, I with him,” she told me. She is a real beauty all these years later, but somehow, didn’t smile for this picture.  I told her my brother named his first child, Maureen. We call her Reena.

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I went to school at Longfellow School in Foster City. And, my two best friends, Karen Halderson and Judy Gedvick lived there. We stopped at Gedvicks and met Anita Gedvick Mattson who lived next door to Halderson’s former house. She bought it and turned it into a Bed and Breakfast.

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Anita decorated the place with old pictures of the Morgan Mill that gave birth to Hardwood, a company town, where everyone worked, including my Grandfather. Anita has pictures of Long Fellow School, some class photos, Mill Photos and other historic memorabilia.

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One photo has Bernice, (bk row, 3rd from right), Maureen Kerry, (bk row 4th from left), my brother Bill, (2nd row first on right), and others we know.

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An incredible wedding picture of Nurse Carlson who was the only medical person in the area at the time. She delivered babies, sewed up huge gashes, gave shots,  and if a baby died, it was buried sometimes without a County Record of the birth. She literally held life and death in her capable hands and everybody loved her.

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All  that remains of our elementary school is this old bus barn and a degraded stone wall.  Where our school stood was a gravel  pit.

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We were just headed out Hungry Hollow to visit Jimmy Cousineau, a cousin of mine by marriage. Bernice’s car was stalling and over-heating and finally boiled over and began steaming. It dumped anti-freeze as we parked and pulled over.

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A local woman named Paula, (last name unknown.) Stopped and called Jimmy Cousineau for help. While we waited, she fed us blackberry’s she had picked.

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One year she picked 50 gallons of berries. They were delicious and thirst quenching.

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My cousin, Jimmy came with a can of water and got us on the road again. He followed us half-way to La Branche to make sure the car was running well. We picked up Marie’s car and continued our trek.

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Back at Hardwood, we passed the Kraus farm. All that remains is an old block barn he built. Kraus was married to Lydia Moore, my father’s mother. Ed Kraus, her fourth husband, outlived her.


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This community center is where all events take place for Hardwood and Foster City residents. Our school plays were held there. I saw my first movie, Lassie, that was set up by caring parents for we kids. It is now modernized with handicapped accessibility and a valued community asset.

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Anita Gedvick told me one of my most cherished, childhood friends had a summer place on the lake near my cousin Jimmy’s place. We had directions and tried to find it. Then, we drove up a driveway where two guys were barbequing and asked if they knew where Karen Halderson Bruckman llived.

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“That’s my wife, who are you?” This is Bob Bruckman and his wife, Karen, who were visiting Wayne Nelson. Had we found her house, we would have missed her. I think I was in shock to think I’d finally located Karen. Just to know that she was well, and happy was a long-time dream come true. What serendipity. And yes, you can go home again.

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