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Echoes From the Loafers’ Club Meeting

What time do you have to be at work?

Twenty after.

Twenty after what?

Twenty minutes after the time I'm supposed to be there.


Driving by the Bruces

I have two wonderful neighbors — both named Bruce  who live across the road from each other. Whenever I pass their driveways, thoughts occur to me, such as: I sometimes think that we go to heaven one moment at a time. I spoke on a tour boat on which Karen Johnson of Geneva was a passenger. Karen worked at a Good Samaritan Home when my mother had been a resident there. Karen was wonderful in caring for my mother. Karen told me that she loved being around my mother and me. She said, "You two were so happy." I know that I was and I still am.


A writer’s world

I'm a writer, which is a good thing because I’m qualified to be only two things. One is a writer and the other — well, you wouldn’t want me handling your fast food.

I love my job. It’s like using a fluffy towel after a shower. You know how good that feels.

Being a writer, I write about everything. Some subjects are unpleasant. I had surgery not long ago. I had a cancerous tumor removed. I never thought I’d ever write about that.

After the operation and still in an anesthetic stupor, I asked one of the doctors, she was from Ireland, if I might have the tumor. For some foolish reason, I thought I needed it.

"What do you need it for?" she asked.

"What do you need it for?" I replied.

I'll never forget her answer.

"No, you can’t have it!"

And that’s how I left Methodist Hospital cancer-free.


Things learned while reading

Former Federal Reserve chairman, Alan Greenspan, had his Men's Underwear Theory. He based it on the sale of men's undergarments — briefs, boxers, boxer briefs and brief boxers. He said that men don’t buy new underwear when the economy is strapped.

Crack meteorologist Paul Douglas said that the National Weather Service found that there has been 25 500-year floods in the U.S. since 2010.

Over the 12 days of the 2016 Minnesota State Fair, Sweet Martha's cookies brought in $4 million, more than three times the revenue of the runner-up, the All You Can Drink Milk booth. Sweet Martha’s used 54 tons of chocolate chips, 62 tons of flour and 42,000 dozen eggs.

Bill Gates reads about 50 books a year. In the early days of Warren Buffett’s investment career, he’d read 600-1000 pages of books in a single day. Nowadays, he still dedicates 80 percent of his day to reading. Buffet said, "Read 500 pages every day. That’s how knowledge works. It builds up, like compound interest. All of you can do it, but I guarantee not many of you will do it."

The Old Farmer's Almanac says that our winter will be warmer than normal, with the coldest periods in late November, early and late December, early January, and early February. Precipitation and snowfall will be below normal, with the snowiest periods in mid- to late December and early to mid-February.

Cowboys weren't much for gunfights. The historian Robert Dykstra counted only 45 homicides in all of the Kansas cattle towns during the cattle era. Dodge City, as portrayed on TV’s "Gunsmoke," polished off more than that each month.


Nature notes

A thunderstorm rumbled like the distant volley of cannons.

I was fighting a one-man war against weeds, just as my father had done before me.

The vultures were vultching. I doubt that vultching is a real word, but it’s descriptive of their dining habits. They weren't after the weeds, although I’ve seen them feeding on pumpkins.

Trees appear wise. I asked a walnut tree if fireflies ever become lightheaded. I got no answer.

It was raining, but the mosquitoes were biting. I think their bites hurt more in the rain. I swatted at them furiously, but I was boxing with balloons. How do mosquitoes fly in the rain? A raindrop has 50 times the mass of a mosquito. A mosquito getting hit by a raindrop is like me getting hit by a school bus. Most of the raindrops fail to collide with a mosquito. Mosquitoes hit by a drop become a part of that raindrop. They are carried by the raindrop, but get off before it hits the ground.


Meeting adjourned

"Remember: you are not who you think you are. You are what you do. Be the kindness of soft rain. Be the beauty of light behind a tall fir. Be gratitude. Be gladness. — Kathleen Dean Moore

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