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Month: December 2010

Happy New Year – Pay It Forward

I’ve noticed a number of 2010-summary type blog posts the past week. I felt a bit of peer pressure – should I do one? 🙂 Then two tiny incidents happened today, and I felt a need to share. The Supermarket Queue Here in Denmark, supermarkets close early on December 31st. I went to the shop to pick up a few necessities (shops are closed tomorrow) and a few treats. Just as it was my turn, I realized the man behind me was buying only 1 item. I told him to go ahead of me in the queue. He was with his son who was about 8 years old, and they probably wanted to get home quickly. He was surprised and grateful and cut in just as the clerk was about to scan my milk. When he paid, he looked back at me and said thank you again, and I wished…


That’s Just Nuts! – Speaking Out About the Unspoken

A dear friend of mine shared a cute gimmick of a bag of peanuts stapled to a peanut-shaped card. The photo shows the front and back of this card, which is from a 2005 campaign by the Mood Disorders Association of Ontario, Canada. I think mental health is an invisible disability that gets too little coverage. I know people who have serious mood disorders and who are (fortunately) getting regular help. Is that person who “acts funny” or behaves “differently” an eccentric person or someone who needs care and attention? I like knowing about the serious problems because I feel it makes me more capable of helping out when they are in serious trouble. You can help them remember to take their medications or contact someone who is equipped to help them properly. People who walk away from a “crazy person” make me sad – they can compound the issue…

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It was a dark and stormy night

In my technical writing circles, the name of Edward Bulwer-Lytton is well-known for a writing contest. The contest is to write a deliberately bad opening line for an awful novel, for example, something beginning with “It was a dark and stormy night…” Well, that’s the beginning of a line by Bulwer-Lytton. He may have been popular in his day, but now, we giggle at his style. Recently, I came across one of his books, The Last Days of Pompeii, and had to share. Without further ado, I present Chapter 1 from the 1926 edition published by Charles Scribner’s Sons for your reading pleasure. (Note the sentence that begins with “He wore no toga…” – it contains 149 words!) Chapter 1: The Two Gentlemen of Pompeii “Ho, Diomed, well met! Do you sup with Glaucus to-night?” said a young man of small stature, who wore his tunic in those loose and…