Tuesday, May 22, 2012

Uncle Warren And Uncle Bill

Imagine you are sixteen years old, you are a World Class Ping Pong player with a very good chance of winning the first medal ever for your country in your sport in next month's London Olympics, and you can call two of the richest men in the world "Uncle"!

Well, Ariel Hsing can and does, just that! Young Miss Hsing has known Mister Buffet since she was nine and was even invited to his seventy-fifth Birthday Party. Can you imagine the party guest list at that party? I wonder if she slept well the night before?

The CBS News ran this video story two nights ago. Check out the story here:

If the video does not play, click here. Did you check out the size of Bill Gate's paddle?

What did you think of the video? I believe with those two in your corner, being an excellent student and hopeful Olympic medalist, her future looks pretty good! I got a charge out of her comment about how her career choice has maybe changed to business. She will no doubt have excellent references on her resume!

I look forward to your comments.



P.S. This is a landmark post for me. It is my 200th post since I started with a post on the 35W Bridge Collapse on August 6, 2007. Check it out by clicking here:


Thursday, May 17, 2012

We All Need A Boost Up Now And Then

I have a challenge for you. Go ahead, try and go a week, three days or even a day without giving or getting a boost up! I am willing to bet you cannot do it. Why would you want to?

I spend a lot of time in front of this computer, reading, writing, calling, learning and listening to talk radio. The other day, I heard an ad for boostup.org. They were giving statistics from The Alliance for Excellent Education about young people dropping out of school. There is a map on the boostup website broken down by state. Fascinating information! I suggest you check out to see how your state is doing. Folks, as a nation, you probably already know, we are not doing very well with graduating our young people from high school.

They give you a list of facts about why students are dropping out. They tell you a few student stories. They tell you how you can take action to do your part by mentoring a single student to volunteering at a school to getting involved in a parent teacher group. And more ...

One suggestion they give which I really like is they suggest the schools bring in a guest speaker or performer! Well, sign me up! I have so many stories of the reactions, administrators, teachers and students have given me after a day in his or her school. I discuss many of them in my book, I Still Believe in Tomorrow

Often times, the reaction is something like, "Your program was much more than I expected." "You give me a new sense of hope." "This was much different than the last person we had." "This was the best program we've ever had." "I didn't want you to stop." 

Then, there are the emails I receive! You would not believe some of them. I receive notes from young people, and adults, who tell me things they have never told anyone! They trust me. They trust me because I speak the truth in my presentations. Do people trust you?

If you are an adult dealing with young people and want to help, give them a boost up however you can. If you are a young person, do the same with your peers.

As always, I look forward to your comments.



Monday, May 7, 2012

On The Road Again

I DID IT! I know I always try to post about once a week, but today is a Red Letter Day and I need to tell somebody! Please indulge me. I have never posted twice in the same day!

Today did not start out very well, but it ended with a BIG BANG! I drove my van for the first time in almost two years! It felt GREAT! We still have a few kinks to work out like getting a new remote control, and figuring out a way to get the key in and out of the ignition without dropping it; and if I do drop it, how will I retrieve it?

Let me tell you how my day started and went up to about 6:00 pm. First of all, my regular day attendant who has been driving me everywhere until her shift ends at 2:00 pm, called in at about 7:30 am with a bad back and could not hardly move! I hope she is okay because she has not answered repeated calls.

She was supposed to take me to acupuncture at 1:00 pm, and that never happened. The nurse who came to change my wound dressing came early and was gracious enough to help get me in my chair. Thank you, Susan!

I spent some time finishing my first post today on truth. I had started it last night and did not get it completed. I worked on it between a long, very productive meeting with my nurse from the new home health agency which started TODAY, and phone calls to and from her and her co-worker who were trying to line up a person to get me out of bed tomorrow and then off to Worthington on Wednesday. Wednesday night I will be the featured speaker at the Annual Awards Banquet and give out our annual scholarship from the Mike Patrick and Coach Milt Osterberg Memorial Scholarship. (By the way, you can learn more about it, and contribute a tax-deductible donation by clicking here. It is still not too late to get your name on the plaque.)

Then, Thursday I speak at a small conference for a senior group from the Worthington ISD 518 Community Education called Spring Fling. Remember, for most of the day, I did not have a driver to get me to these and two other events! My day was not looking good.

Tomorrow morning I have a 10:00 am wound clinic appointment, and no way to get there. Then, at 6:00 pm, my attendant showed up to help fix me dinner. I had been thinking about having Jay put my driver's seat in the passenger side for about an hour; so when he showed up, we decided to try it. After trying a few things and eliciting the help of one of the residents of the building, we got me locked in and ready to roll!

Jay and I took off for AutoZone to get some WD-40, and I was driving again. It felt GREAT! Have I said that yet?

The bottom line is Jay will ride with me to my clinic visit tomorrow. At 2;00 pm, I am meeting with a possible replacement for my regular attendant if she does not recover. I will make it to the 5:00 pm meeting for the planning of Jeff's Memorial and we will make my trip to Worthington!

All things considered, it was a GREAT day. I want to close with an old picture of me driving. Enjoy! Click on the image to enlarge it. This is one of the photos Mike Ross took of me that appear on my website: You can get to the Van Photos page by clicking here:

As always, I look forward to your comments.



P.S. I know this is a long post, but it is 11:00 pm and I am still PUMPED!

Telling The Truth

We have all heard how important it is to tell the truth. There are many, many great quotes that remind us just how important it is to us. A friend sent me this quote I want to share:

Click on the image to make it larger:

I believe it is important to always tell the truth. Sometimes it may hurt you. Other times it may hurt the other person. A quick Google search for Truth quotes brought over two hundred twenty million sites, and many were lists of truth quotes.

As a child, we lived in eight small towns before I was fourteen. My father was always teaching in the same school building as I was, except in Edgerton, the building was across the street. I knew if I ever got in trouble, he would find out about it. 

I was in the fourth or fifth grade and in physical education class, my teacher, Mr. Carlstead wanted us to do a particular exercise and I knew it was wrong because that was not the way my dad had taught me to do it. So I called him on it. He got angry being called to task by a nine- or ten-year-old student, and let me have it!

Of course the news got to my dad and at supper that night (in small town America, the evening meal is supper) he asked me about the incident in school that day. I told him my side of the story and he could hardly get angry with me since I was telling the truth and doing what he had taught me. I would like to think that story is what Gandhi was talking about on many levels.

Truth won out again.

Do you have any truth or trust stories you would like to share? I look forward to reading them.



Tuesday, May 1, 2012

Jeff Farnam's Memorial Service

A date and time have been set for Jeff Farnam's Memorial Service. It is:

June 10th, 3:00 p.m. at the First Universalist Church
3400 Dupont Avenue South
Minneapolis, MN 

A catered celebration of Jeff's amazing life will follow at:

5:30 p.m. at the Minneapolis Photo Center
2400 North Second Street, Second Floor of the Northwind Lofts
Minneapolis, MN 55411

The Center is located four blocks north and two blocks east of West Broadway Avenue and Washington Avenue North, in the Hawthorne neighborhood, just north of the Minneapolis Warehouse District and on the western side of the Mississippi River from the Northeast Minneapolis Arts District. We have free parking available for our members and guests.

Kevin Kling will be the featured speaker and yours truly has been asked to be one of eight speakers who will give short, three to five minute speeches later in the ceremony.

This picture shows one of the patented set of front wheels Jeff had patented in the United States and Canada. Besides being an excellent photographer and pilot, he was also an inventor.

Check out these wheels. Click on the image to make it larger:

I look forward to seeing you at Jeff's Memorial Service.

As always, feel free to comment.