Sunday, May 31, 2009

Google GMail

Photo: Mr. Dickie (White Peony in our backyard, May 2009)

When you are offended at anyone's fault, turn to yourself and study your own failings. By attending to them, you will forget your anger and learn to live wisely. (Marcus Aurelius, Meditations, 30 May)

Because most worry focuses on the future, if we can learn to stay in the present, living one day or one moment at a time, we take positive steps toward warding offf the effects of fear. (Courage to Change, 29 May)

When I detach my mind from what is troubling me, my problems often solve themselves. Or it may be that leaving them to God gives Him a chance to take a hand in my affairs. (One Day at a Time in Al-Anon, 30 May)
  • I've been studying in a book and online how Google Gmail works. One thing I really like is that the Google search can help you find something in the collection of Email. Also the Picasa photo progam and Gmail are designed to work together. I'm thinking about getting a Gmail address for myself.

Mr. Dickie

Saturday, May 30, 2009


Photo: Mr. Dickie (Peony in our backyard, Spring 2009)
Seek to learn constantly while you live; do not wait in the faith that old age by itself will bring wisdom. (Solon in A Calendar of Wisdom by Leo Tolstoy, 9 May)

You should live your life as if you are ready to say good-bye to it at any moment, as if the time left you is some pleasant surprise. (Marcus Aurelius in A Calendar of Wisdom by Leo Tolstoy, 12 May)

I expect to pass through life but once. If, therefore, there can be any good thing I can do to any fellow human being, let me do it now. (William Penn in One More Day by Sefra Kobrin Pitzele, 30 May)

When death comes, what has been done is done. We'll receive no second chances. (Kay Arthur, Search My Heart, O God, 11 May)
  • Yesterday Melva resumed attending her Friday quilting class at the Bowie Senior Center. The ladies have been making handbags while she was gone. They played Bingo. The prize was quilt blocks.
  • We went to WalMart late in the day to pick up the photos Melva took in Panama. We wasted our time. They still hadn't been delivered. To prevent the trip from being a complete loss we bought two bags of birdseed and several other items.
  • In the evening I read about Google Mail in a book I checked out of the library. I like how it works with the photo management program, Picasa.
  • I reviewed the procedure to order 250 "free" business cards off the Internet for $6.00. My account was still there. Sunday Melva will get all of the details while she is at work. She plans to use the same design. I make my own business cards with nine lines of information on white card stock using the computer and printer. Melva's have a purple flower on a purple background. They are quite attractive.
  • Today is the 90th birthday of my Henthorn family cousin, Brad. We talked the other day on the phone. Congratulations Brad on achieving this life milestone!

Mr. Dickie

Friday, May 29, 2009


Photo: Mr. Dickie (Rose in our backyard, Spring 2009)

Self-care is an acknowledgment of God's divine presence in you. Spending time caring for your mind enables God's light, love and wisdom to shine through your thoughts. When you make it a point to still your mind and your body to care for your spirit, you open yourself to receive the power of God's wisdom. This wisdom leads to righteousness -- right thinking, right action and right response in all aspects of life. Caring for yourself demonstrates gratitude for God's presence in you. (Iyanla Vanzant, Until Today! 30 April)

Thursday, May 28, 2009


Photo: Mr. Dickie (Plant grown for it's foliage in our backyard.)

In most cases, 80 percent of the people have their own people to complain about, and the other 20 percent don't care. (Iyanla Vanzant, Faith in the Valley, p. 162)

  • Yesterday I went for a walk at Schrom Park. I walked about an hour. My booty bag must have intefered with the pedometer. I listened to the music of Diana Krall and Carly Simon while I walked. Most of the time I was the only one walking. This isn't unusual. The two ambulances and a AAA roadside help truck were in the parking lot with their engines running the whole time. This drives me nuts. How can this be going on in a town named, Greenbelt.

Mr. Dickie

Wednesday, May 27, 2009

It Sounded So Good in the Ad

Photo: Mr. Dickie (Iris in our backyard, Spring 2009)

You have to think about what you say; only then will you feel quiet and kind and filled with love. The more you are irritated, the more excited you become, the more care you must exercise not to sin with your words by abusing others. (Leo Tolstoy, A Calendar of Wisdom, 25 May)

  • Yesterday evening and again this morning I received a so-called "courtesy call" from Verizon. Both times the phone connection was bad. With the old phone system that hardly ever happened. Yesterday the conversation was so garbled I immediately became frustrated and angry. Then I realized that the lady who called didn't have the knowledge or power to do anything about any complaint. She gave their "phony" stock apology each time I mentioned something and then wanted to put me on hold. Eventually I got fed up with the process and hung up. This morning the man who called wanted to do the same thing, "phony apology" followed by transfer to a "hold" situation while I waited for someone else to talk to me. I told him to stop with the apologies. He couldn't. He's programmed like a robot to repeat the apology phrase. I told him I was hanging up and I did. I'm resolved to make a list of my issues with FIOS and then either write or call them to deal with them all at once. Nothing's ever easy when you let a business into the house.
Mr. Dickie

Tuesday, May 26, 2009

No Guarantees

Photo: Mr. Dickie (Iris in our backyard, Spring 2009)

There are no guarantees. If we are waiting for guaranteed courses of action we may spend much of our life waiting. (Melody Beattie, The Language of Letting Go, 15 May)

The only things you can really control in life are your thoughts and that is not easy. (Susan Smith Jones, Choose to Live Each Day Fully, Day 142)

I do not have to plan the rest of my life this morning. (Food For Thought, 15 May)

  • Yesterday I moved the Iris photos I took in the backyard from the camera to the laptop computer. I also posted a photo I took of my high school yearbook cover to the Class of '57 group on Facebook.
  • I enjoyed a short phone conversation with my cousin, Brad, in California. We hadn't talked for a long time.

Mr. Dickie

Monday, May 25, 2009

Spiritual Life

I recognize the benefits of living a spiritual life, where I am accountable to myself. I am not living this way because any person or organization tells me to do so, I am on this journey because I desire a better life and I know I am the only one who can make this happen. I am never alone, because within me lives my higher self, or higher power, which is my own personal source of wisdom and answers that are without agenda. It is "me" telling "me" what I already know, but because of humanness I need to work at all times at remembering. (Suzanne Somers, 365 Ways to Change Your Life, p., 139-40)

Sunday, May 24, 2009

My Story

Photo: Cyndi Henthorn (Dick Henthorn at Grace's Fortune on his 70th birthday)

I am looking for progress, not perfection. (Sefra Kobrin Pitzele, One More Day, 9 May)

I am the only one who can tell my story. (Courage to Change, 10 May)

I choose to simplify my life and pay attention to what's really important. (Susan Smith Jones, Choose to Live Each Day, Day 132)

  • Yesterday I found a second website where one can make a fake magazine cover with an uploaded photograph. I created one that looks like a Time cover with a 70th birthday photo of myself. I posted the photo on the Facebook wall. Today I'm going to include the same item in my Google blog because that will make it available to more people.
  • Yesterday I received notice that my college roommate, Tom, had joined Facebook. I think he will enjoy the postings of the Class of '57 group of Wichita High School - East.
  • Today Melva returns to work. While she was in Panama the Hair Cuttery closed the shop where she was working. Melva chose to move to their shop in Crofton, MD. The new shop is about three miles away from the one that closed. It's in a small mall where there's a KMart. That should bring business to the shop. Melva talked to several of her customers yesterday and some will show up today. We stopped by the old shop to see if the manager had put up a sign to let customers know where the employees went. The only message was about the manager and one other employee who decided to move to a barbershop at the back of the Hilltop Mall. We brought along some tape and a 3 x 5 card with the phone number of the Crofton shop because we anticipated that this would happen. As I always say, "This is a hairy business." Only strong women can be hair dressers for many years. Most fall by the wayside early on.

Mr. Dickie

Saturday, May 23, 2009


Photo: Mr. Dickie (Portland, OR)
Troubles, like babies, grow larger by nursing. (Lady Holland in One More Day by Sefra Kobrin Pitzele, 6 May)

Anyone ... who tries to take control of what cannot be controlled, brings trouble to himself. (Touchstones, 5 May)

[Do not] ... give reality to trouble that may never come. (One Day at a Time in Al-Anon, 19 May)
  • Last night Cyndi took the subway from work to the New Carrollton station which is about a mile from our house. I went to the station to pick her up. She brought food to eat for supper. Melva and Cyndi looked at the gifts Melva brought back from Panama for Cyndi. Melva and I took Cyndi back to her apartment when the evening drew to a close. We had a very nice visit. There was heavy Memorial Day weekend traffic in both directions on the beltway. Everyone except guys on motorcyles was driving sensibly.
  • There was a nice suprise when I signed on this morning. My college roommate, Tom, joined Facebook.

Mr. Dickie

Friday, May 22, 2009

Photo Effects

Photo: Mr. Dickie (Garden by kitchen door, May 2009)

There is danger in taking on another's duty - danger that we may neglect our own, and that we may deprive them of what they may learn from finding their own solutions. (One Day at a Time in Al-Anon, 7 May)

Waiting for a particular turn of events is a good way to lead yourself into disappointment. (Iyanla Vanzant, Acts of Faith, 9 May)

  • I'm interested in photo effects for slide shows. When AOL offered free space for journaling they made some available. It never worked very well when viewing the pages over a telephone connection. Now that I have high-speed Internet I'd like to learn more about this. I found a "free" program with some effects. Of course there is a more feature rich version of the program available for purchase. I have so many projects this one will probably just be another line on my "to do" list.

Mr. Dickie

Thursday, May 21, 2009

We Give Thanks

Photo: Mr. Dickie (Melva's columbine in our backyard.)

Lord, we give thanks that Melva was able to travel to Panama and for her safe return.

There Is No Shortcut

Photo: Mr. Dickie (Melva's orchid)

I have much more to be grateful for than I realize. Too often I don't remember to give thoughts to all the things in my life that I could enjoy and appreciate. (One Day at a Time, 5 May)

There is no shortcut to life. To the end of our days, life is a lesson imperfectly learned. (Harrison E. Salisbury in Touchstones, 11 May)

  • Yesterday I didn't post to any of my blogs.
  • Yesterday I worked on a music player project. I decided I should have made folders on my Oasis player for the various artists. I could do this easily with the player plugged into the laptop computer USB hub. This should also make it easier to remove the music if I need more space.
  • Last night I left house to drive to Dulles airport about 12:30 a.m. The trip took just forty-five minutes. I arrived about 1:11 a.m. I was an hour early because it took about an hour for Melva to clear customs. She came out with all of her three bags loaded on a cart. That made it easy to get everything to the car. We arrived back at the house at 3:00 a.m. Melva enjoyed her visit to Panama. By the time she was ready to leave she was tried of all of the rain.

Mr. Dickie

Tuesday, May 19, 2009

Wrapping Up

Photo: Mr. Dickie (Melva's azalea in our backyard, Spring 2009)

There is danger in taking on another's duty - danger that we may neglect our own, and that we may deprive them of what they may learn from finding their own solutions. (One Day at a Time in Al-Anon, 7 May)

It can be very liberating to make a decision. Once the choice is made I can trust that the consequences will unfold as they should. With a slight change of attitude perhaps I can await them with excitement and hope instead of fear and dread. (Courage to Change, 14 May)
  • Today and tomorrow remain to put the house back in order and wrap up the projects I worked on while Melva was in Panama. Today, I'll spend time filing paper that I have been sorting in the living room. I'm pleased with what I accomplished. Not satisfied, just pleased. I made some progress in my quest to eliminate some of the clutter.

Mr. Dickie

Monday, May 18, 2009

The Way You Spend Your Time

Photo: Mr. Dickie (Coneflowers in our backyard)

Deluded by an exaggerated sense of our own importance, we deem it crucial to perform all tasks and activities according to our personal schedules. ... We make ourselves tense and miserable by our refusal to accept life as it comes. (Food For Thought, 5 May)

Do you realize that the way you spend your time reflects your values? Think for a moment about how you spend your days. (Kay Arthur, Search My Heart, O God, 10 May)
  • Yesterday I took a short walk around the neighborhood. I stopped to sit on the deck with my friend, Charles, for a while. We talked about a project he hired someone to do. It didn't go well.
  • I spent a lot of time talking on the phone. I talked with my high school friend in Pennsylvania, my college friend in Washington, my Army friend in Oregon and Melva in Panama. Melva and I discussed the events that need to take place on Wednesday when she returns to Maryland. She gave me instructions to record the Spanish soap opera, Dona Barbara on Telemundo on Wednesday evening.
  • I continued to work on my paper clutter project. I prepared a notebook full of sheet binders holding pages of information about Google, Picasa, Ancestral Author, my SanDisk MP3 player and other information I'd printed out over many months. For the first time in a long time I know where certain sheets of instructions are located.
  • One of Melva's customers called yesterday. When she called the beauty shop no one answered the phone. This happened because the shop closed permanently yesterday. We wonder if they put a sign in the window announcing what happened and if there's a list of where the employees relocated. Working in this business is never easy.
Mr. Dickie

Sunday, May 17, 2009

Need To Be Right

Indeed, this need of individuals to be right is so great that they are willing to sacrifice themselves, their relationships, and even love for it. (Reuel Howe in Touchstones, 28 April)

I keep all my agreements and make only those agreements that I can keep. (Susan Smith Jones, Choose to Live Each Day Fully, Day 120)
  • Yesterday I went to the school track for my walk. I wanted to check my pedometer calibration. As I suspected, it's off. At the end of the walk it displays more miles than I actually walked. At the end of thirteen laps it showed that I had walked four miles. It should take sixteen laps to walk four miles on a quarter-mile track. As we used to say, "It's close enough for government work."
  • This week I will be busy wrapping up some projects I've been working on while Melva was in Panama,. She returns to Maryland early on Thursday morning. The plane is scheduled to arrive about 2:00 a.m. at Dulles. I'll pick her up. The flight from Panama to Dulles takes just over four hours. I wonder if she can clear customs by 3:00 a.m. It will probably be after 4:00 a.m. bfore we arrive at the house.
  • I had trouble getting the laptop to boot up this morning. I hate when this happens. If my anxiety level could be measured with a thermometer the top would blow out.
  • I received Email from former co-worker, Bill, in Florida and from Linda, a Henthorn/Cooley relative who manages the Cooley website. It was great to hear from both of them.
Mr. Dickie

Saturday, May 16, 2009

Vietnam and Korea

Photo: Mr. Dickie (Our house Spring 2009)

Vietnam and Korea were embarrassing, pointless political disasters. ... there'll never be another war that seems glorious, from here on out, they're all nasty, bureaucratic charades. (Andrew Frothingham and Trip Evans, Wake Up and Smell the Coffee, 6 May)

Friday, May 15, 2009

Mind Training

70th Birthday

It requires years to train one's mind. It is the work of a lifetime to develop to full spiritual stature. A mind that lacks the spirit is useless. Having both is what gives real meaning to life. (Alan L. Roeck, Look To This Day, 4 May)

Today I will enjoy the calmness of my life. Within this calmness, I will dream and make plans for making my life even fuller. (Sefra Kobrin Pitzele, One More Day, 12 May)

Thursday, May 14, 2009

The Truth

If you know the truth, or if you think that you know the truth, try to pass it on to others, as simply as you can, along with the feeling of love for those persons to whom you pass it. (Leo Tolstoy, A Calendar of Wisdom, 2 May)

Wednesday, May 13, 2009


Photo: Mr. Dickie (Bleeding Heart in our backyard, Spring 2009)

... what I go through in life is not as important as how I interpret the experience. (Courage to Change, 16 April)

Changing diets for a healthier lifestyle means a commitment to discovering new ways of eating and cooking. (Susan Smith Jones, Choose to Live Each Day, Day 113)

Sometimes we deeply love people we need to separate from unless their behavior changes. (Melody Beattie, The New Codependency, p. 36)
  • Yesterday Melva traveled from her hometown, Volcan, to Panama (city). It's a very long bus ride. This begins the last phase of her visit to Panama. In the evening I was able to use the phone card without any trouble. We talked for about a half hour.
  • During the day yesterday I trimmed and mowed the yard. The iris plants are in bloom now. There must be at least a half dozen different varieties in the backyard. When the sun came out I took some photographs.
  • Yesterday I worked again on my "clutter issues." I'd call this phase, the "out of sight, out of mind" phase. I moved boxes of genealogy source documents from the basement and shed to the attic. In the process I selected two boxes to set aside for review at a later time. The project was physically demanding and I was glad when it was done. Because I didn't take time to review the contents of each box I was able to successfully complete the task.
Mr. Dickie

Tuesday, May 12, 2009

C&O Canal

Photo: Mr. Dickie (C&O Canal at Cumberland, Maryland)

In a moment of decision the best thing you can do is the right thing to do. The worst thing you can do is nothing. (Theodore Roosevelt in Acts of Faith by Iyanla Vanzant, 15 April)

I must keep calm and unmoved by the vicissitudes of life. (Alan L. Roeck, Look To This Day, 15 April)
  • Melva is traveling to Panama (city) today. Her visit is winding down. She has about seven days left before she returns to Maryland. I'm busy trying to complete some house cleaning (clutter) projects before she arrives.
Mr. Dickie

Monday, May 11, 2009

Our Garden

Photos: Mr. Dickie (Our garden, Spring 2009)

The rewards from detachment are great: serenity; a deep sense of peace; the ability to give and receive love in self-enchancing, energizing ways; and the freedom to find real solutions to our problems. (From Codependent No More, found in The Language of Letting Go by Melody Beattie, 27 April)

People very often do not accept the truth, because they do not like the form in which the truth is presented to them. (Leo Tolstoy, A Calendar of Wisdom, 2 May)

I'm willing to provide a box of tissues to help with your issues. (Richard E. Henthorn after Wake Up and Smell the Coffee by Andrew Frothingham and Tripp Evans, 24 April)

  • Yesterday I learned how to create a mailing list on Facebook. The list facilitates sending the same message to a number of people. I created one for Library of Congress friends. I sent a message to test and received a reply from one of the recipients.
  • Cyndi travels to Las Vegas today to attending a Coop convention. She called from Dulles to let me know she was ready to board the plane for the five-hour flight. She returns home on Friday.
  • Neither Cyndi or I are able to complete a phone call to Volcan where Melva is now. Melva called me yesterday using her cellphone. I was glad she did because I wanted her to know why we hadn't called. She moves to the city again tomorrow. I'll try calling again on Tuesday.
  • I used Picasa to prepare some photo collages that I want to post to my blogs this week. I like the "grid" format that displays nine photos. It's easy to do.
  • There's a way to test FIOS Internet download and upload speeds. Our plan is supposed to be 10/2. That means 10 Mbps download and 2 Mbps upload. My test indicated that the speed is 7.579/1.95. Mbps.
  • Today the iris plants in the backyard are in bloom. I saw at least a half dozen different varieties.

Mr. Dickie

Sunday, May 10, 2009

Do Not Feel Desperate About It

Photo: Mr. Dickie (Melva's backyard azalea, May 2009)

Real goodness is always simple. Simplicity is so attractive and so profitable that it is strange that so few people truly lead simple lives. (Leo Tolstoy, A Calendar of Wisdom, 23 April)

A life of reaction is a life of slavery, intellectually and spiritually. One must fight for a life of action not reaction. (Rita Mae Brown in Touchstones, 30 April)

Criticize yourself, but do not feel desperate about it. (Epictetus in A Calendar of Wisdom by Leo Tolstoy, 1 May)
  • I made a couple of test videos with my digital camera. In one I panned the azaleas in front of the house. I tried to upload this 20-second video to Facebook. That didn't work. I was successful in uploading the video to one of my Google blogs. The video itself wasn't very good. I deleted it right after I confirmed that it would work.
  • There's something wrong with the phone connection to Panama. I haven't been able to complete a call for several days. Yesterday Melva called me and her call got cut off after a couple of minutes. I spent about twenty minutes waiting for help from the phone card company yesterday. I was told to try again in two hours. I did and the line still went dead. I'm frustrated.
Mr. Dickie

Saturday, May 9, 2009

Precious Lord

Photo: Mr. Dickie (Amarylis blooming in our diningroom)
Precious Lord, take my hand. Lead me on. Let me stand. I am tired. I am weak. I am worn. Through the storm, through the night, lead me on to the light. Take my hand, precious Lord, and lead me home.(African-American Spiritual)

Still Learning

Photo: Cyndi (Mr. Dickie on his 70th birthday, 7 May 2009)

Whenever we get to smart for our britches, something comes along to let us know there is a Power Greater than us. (after Melody Beattie, The New Codependency, p. 224)

I am capable of taking better care of myself ... (Sefra Kobrin Pitzele, One More Day, 17 April)

Today I am devoted to addressing all the little things about me and in my life that I have not mastered! (Iyanla Vanzant, Until Today! 14 April)

Instead of reacting immediately to some perceived offense, [I'll] take time to cool down. (Kay Arthur, Search My Heart, O God, 14 April)
  • Yesterday I shot my first two videos with the digital camera. I took one outside. I panned across the front of the house, taking in all of the blooming azaleas. I put the camera on a tripod and shot one of myself in the house. I learned a few things and discovered that I need to learn more. I found out that there is no speaker on the camera. To hear the sound the file must be downloaded to the computer. You can't rotate a video like you can a still. The mode for shooting a video is landscape. I didn't succeed in uploading the video to Facebook. It appeared to work but I couldn't get it to play.
  • I learned that there is a family website for the Cooley family. One of my Henthorn female relatives, of Pike county, Illinois, married a Cooley. Friend, Vickie, helped me get reinstated on the website. I posted a short "news" item to let folks know I celebrated my 70th birthday. Vickie posted the two birthday photos I shared.
Mr. Dickie

Friday, May 8, 2009

High-Speed Internet

Mr. Dickie and Cyndi at Grace's Fortune for lunch on Dick's 70th Birthday - 7 May 2009

Because a thing seems difficult for you, do not think it is impossible for anyone to accomplish. But whatever is possible for another, believe that you, too, are capable of it. (Marcus Aurelius in One Day at a Time, 24 April)

This morning I'm listening to the very nice Jessi Colter CD - The Very Best of - An Outlaw .. A Lady. I checked it out at the Crofton library.

Yesterday I received birthday phone calls from Wanda, my next door neighbor, and from Melva in Panama. Cyndi took me to eat lunch at Grace's in Bowie, MD. I received many birthday messages via Facebook and Email. Thanks to everyone who remembered my "special" 70th birthday. We took some photos with Cyndi's camera while at the restaurant. Before Cyndi left the house we took more photos with my camera. It only took a few minutes to download the photos Cyndi took because she brought along her cable.

The fact that I recently signed up for high-speed Internet access made it possible for Cyndi to stop paying for the AOL service. She signed up in 1996. We both used the same account even though we live in two different locations. While she was here we followed the steps I'd printed out the other day to notify AOL that we no longer will pay for the phone line connection to the service. As we understand the new arrangement we give up "help" service which we almost never used. We can keep the screen names and I will still be able to visit the two genealogy chatrooms. The one called, Family Treehouse, usually operates from 7-8 p.m. EST each night. Lately only about six people show up and they stay for less than an hour. I predict that this chat which has been active ever since I first signed on to AOL will soon be a thing of the past. I remember when the room filled to capacity (47) on many evenings when people thought you could get genealogy help online.

Mr. Dickie

Thursday, May 7, 2009

70th Birthday

Photo: (Mr. Dickie in front of an azalea bush at his house.)

In the time that is left to me, I'm going to try to take it easy, to relax, to avoid worry, and to be helpful to others. (Alan L. Roeck, Look To This Day, 3 May)

Today is my 70th birthday. I was born on May 7, 1939 at Bryan Memorial Hospital in Lincoln, Nebraska. I'm grateful that I achieved this milestone birthday. My parents, Edward and Ruth, shared much wisdom that has served me well during my lifetime. My educational experiences in Bellevue, Nebraska, Wichita, Kansas and Pittsburg, Kansas were positive because of many good teachers. Melva and I will celebrate our 42nd wedding anniversary next month. Our daughter Cyndi has brought great joy to our lives. It was my good fortune to make a living in the military and civilian government working in interesting and challenging jobs that I enjoyed. The military provided the opportunity to learn to speak Spanish which changed the course of my life. And, I survived four surgeries for rather serious health issues. I've had a good life!

Mr. Dickie

Wednesday, May 6, 2009

Breaking News

Photo: Mr. Dickie (Lightger Amphibious Resupply Cargo (LARC) at Fort Story, VA, used by 347th Transportation Company in Vietnam)

Most of our difficulties are caused by disharmony of one sort of another. We lack power because we lack harmony with a Higher Power and with each other. (Alan L. Roeck, Look To This Day, 29 April)

... [I] fully accept the necessity of discipline and that, if I do not assert it from within, then I will pay for it. (Daily Reflections, 29 April)
  • Yesterday I called Melva with "breaking news." By accident I found out that the beauty shop where she works will permanently close on Saturday May 16th. I contacted the manager and assistant manager to find out what's going to happen. I went to the shop in the afternoon to pick up Melva's cart and some paperwork they were holding for her. There are three other Hair Cuttery shops in the Bowie area. Melva told me to tell her boss that she wants to work at the shop in Crofton. I estimate that the Crofton shop is about two miles further east and north of the one that is closing. We weren't completely taken by surprise by this turn of events. We'd discussed the possibility before Melva made the decision to go to Panama. The big question will be how many of Melva's customers will follow her to the next shop.
Mr. Dickie

Tuesday, May 5, 2009

What is Actually Going On?

Take a close look.

You must realize what is actually going on before you can effectively deal with it. (Ralpha in Acts of Faith by Iyanla Vanzant, 26 April)

The challenge that chronic illness presents is to reorganize our goals so they are still practical and attainable. ... [The chronic illness is] not going to go away. Things will never be the same as before. Accepting this fact is a colossal challenge. (Sefra Kobrin Pitzele, One More Day, 25 April)

  • I continued to work on my clutter elimination project. I made a run to the thrift store with several items. I filled to waste baskets with envelopes and paper. I'm ready to seal two boxes of envelopes I'm donating to The Art Cover Exchange. I'm still mulling over what to do with the five-inch floppy disks. I don't have a computer that can read them. This is a big issue with changing computer technology.
  • I learned that former co-worker, Katy, will retired on July 3rd. She invited me to her retirement luncheon on June 24th. I'm planning to attend.
  • The initial interest in the two Facebook groups for The Class of '57 has worn off. Both groups have less than twenty members. About 75% of the members never post anything after they join. I wonder if this is the experience with most groups.

Mr. Dickie

Monday, May 4, 2009


Photo: Mr. Dickie (Blackwater Falls, WV)

If you want an accurate picture of your present values, analyze how you spend your time each day. Ask yourself if your activities reflect the things that are - or should be - closest to your heart. (Kay Arthur, Search My Heart, O God, 1 May)

Instead of worrying about other people and trying to pronounce judgement on their needs and efforts, it would be better to concentrate on .. [my] own progress. (Food For Thought, 29 April)
  • I spent a lot of time yesterday on the phone. I called my high school friend, Thad, in Philadelphia and Melva in Panama. I received phone calls from John in Crofton and Gary in Odenton.
  • I finished my review of the Art Cover Exchange envelopes that I intend to send to my friend Charlie in Elyria, Ohio. All that remains is to pack them in a box or boxes and go to UPS to make the shipment.
  • Another day of rain is expected today. The trees and bushes look beautiful. I'm waiting for a sunny day because I want to take some photos of the azaleas while they are in full bloom.
Mr. Dickie

Sunday, May 3, 2009


Photo: Mr. Dickie (Day Lily in our backyard)

As mature people we must learn not to love ourselves excessively nor to mistrust the universe morbidly. (Joshua Loth Liebman in One More Day by Sefra Kobrin Pitzele, 22 April)

Wisdom is not acquired overnight. The more patient we are and the more humble, the better able we are to learn from the mistakes we make. (Food For Thought, 23 April)

  • I'm ready for some sunlight. It's been overcast for about four days. The azaleas look beautiful. I'm waiting for the sun before I take photos.

Mr. Dickie

Saturday, May 2, 2009

Art Cover Exchange (ACE)

Photo: Mr. Dickie (Part of a print I purchased while in Airborne training at Fort Benning, GA, 1962)

I must maintain balance by keeping spiritual things at the center of my life. God will give me this poise and balance if I pray for it. (Alan L. Roeck, Look To This Day, 14 April)

I feast of positive words and ideas. I fast from negative thinking. (Susan Smith Jones, Choose to Live Each Day Fully, Day 106)

  • Last night I discovered that the CMT channel is showing movies in May. I watched, for a second time, the movie "O' Brother, Where Art Thou," with George Clooney. It was hard to sit through all of the long commercials. The movie is somewhat silly. The photography is beautiful and it's interesting how the movie is built around Bluegrass music. I tried to find the schedule for the rest of May at the CMT website. I didn't see it.

  • This morning I worked for two hours on a project in the basement. I have four cartons of envelopes that need review. For a few years I belonged to a club called The Art Cover Exchange. I was ACE #67. Members put artwork on envelopes that they send to each other. About half of my collection is on small envelopes and half on business sized envelopes. I intend to give the collection Charlie Delgado, ACE #20. He'll probably use some of the covers in support of club activities. One box remains to be reviewed. This project is part of my effort to reduce clutter and free up some storage space.
Mr. Dickie

Friday, May 1, 2009

The Most Important Rule

Photo: Mr. Dickie (Greenbelt, Maryland open air market)

We cannot hope to obtain any sort of perfection in a society which is divided into two parts: rich people who rule the world and poor people who obey their orders. (Leo Tolstoy, A Calendar of Wisdom, 14 April)

If you have an income without working hard, then someone worked hard without receiving income. (Maimonides in A Calendar of Wisdom by Leo Tolstoy, 14 April)

The final and most important rule is that we must follow all the rules, all the time. (Iyanla Vanzant, Acts of Faith, 18 April)

  • The basketball game last night between the Celtics and Bulls went into three overtimes. The Bulls won 128 to 127. There will be a seventh game on Saturday in Boston. I watched most of the game. A few records were broken. This game will probably be one of the best of this year's NBA tournament.
  • Yesterday I went to Schrom Park for a walk. I walked five laps in an hour. Afterwards I stopped at the Greenbelt library. I bought a CD and book in the bookstore and checked out a book about Google.
  • In the evening my friend Raj from The Library of Congress called to tell me that Al Banks had been named Director of the Information Technology Service (ITS). At one time Al was a programmer on my Bill Digest team. His story of advancement is a great success story. Congratulations Al.

Mr. Dickie