Saturday, June 17, 2006

Two Stories


Many years ago, Al Capone virtually owned Chicago. Capone wasn't famous for anything heroic. He was notorious for enmeshing the windy city in everything from bootlegged booze and prostitution to murder.

Capone had a lawyer nicknamed "Easy Eddie." He was his lawyer for a good reason. Eddie was very good! In fact, Eddie's skill at legal maneuvering kept Big Al out of jail for a long time.

To show his appreciation, Capone paid him very well. Not only was the money big, but also, Eddie got special dividends. For instance, he and his family occupied a fenced-in mansion with live-in help and all of the conveniences of the day. The estate was so large that it filled an entire Chicago City block.

Eddie lived the high life of the Chicago mob and gave little consideration to the atrocity that went on around him. Eddie did have one soft spot, however. He had a son that he loved dearly.

Eddie saw to it that his young son had clothes, cars, and a good education. Nothing was withheld. Price was no object. And, despite his involvement with organized crime, Eddie even tried to teach him right from wrong.

Eddie wanted his son to be a better man than he was. Yet, with all his wealth and influence, there were two things he couldn't give his son; he couldn't pass on a good name or a good example.

One day, Easy Eddie reached a difficult decision. Easy Eddie wanted to rectify wrongs he had done. He decided he would go to the authorities and tell the truth about Al "Scarface" Capone, clean up his tarnished name, and offer his son some semblance of integrity.

To do this, he would have to testify against The Mob, and he knew that the cost would be great. So, he testified.

Within the year, Easy Eddie's life ended in a blaze of gunfire on a lonely Chicago Street. But in his eyes, he had given his son the greatest gift he had to offer, at the greatest price he could ever pay.

Police removed from his pockets a rosary, a crucifix, a religious medallion, and a poem clipped from a magazine.

The poem read:

The clock of life is wound but once,
And no man has the power
To tell just when the hands will stop
At late or early hour.

Now is the only time you own.
Live, love, toil with a will.
Place no faith in time.
For the clock may soon be still.


World War II produced many heroes.

One such man was Lieutenant Commander Butch O'Hare. He was a fighter pilot assigned to the aircraft carrier Lexington in the South Pacific.

One day his entire squadron was sent on a mission. After he was airborne, he looked at his fuel gauge and realized that someone had forgotten to top off his fuel tank. He would not have enough fuel to complete his mission and get back to his ship.

His flight leader told him to return to the carrier. Reluctantly, he dropped out of formation and headed back to the fleet.

As he was returning to the mother ship he saw something that turned his blood cold: a squadron of Japanese aircraft were speeding their way toward the American fleet.

The American fighters were gone on a sortie, and the fleet was all but defenseless. He couldn't reach his squadron and bring them back in time to save the fleet. Nor could he warn the fleet of the approaching danger.

There was only one thing to do.

He must somehow divert them from the fleet. Laying aside all thoughts of personal safety, he dove into the formation of Japanese planes. Wing-mounted 50 caliber's blazed as he charged in, attacking one surprised enemy plane and then another.

Butch wove in and out of the now broken formation and fired at as many planes as possible until all his ammunition was finally spent.

Undaunted, he continued the assault. He dove at the planes, trying to clip a wing or tail in hopes of damaging as many enemy planes as possible and rendering them unfit to fly.

Finally, the exasperated Japanese squadron took off in another direction. Deeply relieved, Butch O'Hare and his tattered fighter limped back to the carrier. Upon arrival, he reported in and related the event surrounding his return.

The film from the gun-camera mounted on his plane told the tale. It showed the extent of Butch's daring attempt to protect his fleet.

He had, in fact, destroyed five enemy aircraft.

This took place on February 20, 1942, and for that action Butch became the Navy's first Ace of W.W.II, and the first Naval Aviator to win the Congressional Medal of Honor.

A year later Butch was killed in aerial combat at the age of 29.

His home town would not allow the memory of this WW II hero to fade, and today, O'Hare Airport in Chicago is named in tribute to the courage of this great man.

So, the next time you find yourself at O'Hare International, give some thought to visiting Butch's memorial displaying his statue and his Medal of Honor.

It's located between Terminals 1 and 2.

What do these two stories have to do with one another?

Butch O'Hare was "Easy Eddie's" son.

Sermon on Horseback

It was Saturday night and the preacher still hadn't been able to think of a sermon for the next morning. About 9:00 p.m., he finally said to his wife, "Dear, I think I've come up with the perfect sermon! I'm going to give a sermon about horseback riding!"

She said, "Don't be silly! You can't give a sermon about horseback riding!"

He replied, "Well, it's going to have to do because I've preached on just about every other subject I can think of."

The next morning as they were driving to church, she said, "I can't believe that you're insisting on doing this! You know, if you're going to give that silly sermon on horseback riding, I'm just going to stay in the car during the service."

He said, "OK, then, suit yourself!" So she stayed in the car!

Entering church before the service, the preacher had a sudden inspiration and gave a hellfire and brimstone sermon on SEX that just had the congregation in awe.

As the congregation filed out of the church, some of the members saw his wife sitting in the car and approached her window.

One of them said, "Wow! You just missed the best sermon your husband has ever given!"

She said, "Yeah, right! What does he know about it! He talks big but he's only tried it twice in his life! Once before we were married and once after, ... and he fell off both times!"

Tuesday, June 13, 2006

Lucky Mary

Mary and her husband Jim had a dog, Lucky. Lucky was a real character.

Whenever Mary and Jim had company come for a weekend visit they would warn their friends to not leave their luggage open because Lucky would help himself to whatever struck his fancy. Inevitably, someone would forget and something would come up missing. Mary or Jim would go to Lucky's toy box in the basement and there the treasure would be, amid all of Lucky's favorite toys. Lucky always stashed his finds in his toy box and he was very particular that his toys stay in the box.

It happened that Mary found out she had breast cancer. Something told her she was going to die of this disease, she was just sure it was fatal. She scheduled the double mastectomy, fear riding her shoulders.

The night before she was to go to the hospital she cuddled with Lucky. A thought struck her...what would happen to Lucky? Although the three-year-old dog liked Jim, he was Mary's dog through and through. If I die, Lucky will be abandoned, Mary thought. He won't understand that I didn't want to leave him. The thought made her sadder than thinking of her own death. The double mastectomy was harder on Mary than her doctors had anticipated and Mary was hospitalized for over two weeks.

Jim took Lucky for his evening walk faithfully, but the little dog just drooped, whining and miserable. Finally the day came for Mary to leave the hospital. When she arrived home, Mary was so exhausted she couldn't even make it up the steps to her bedroom. Jim made his wife comfortable on the couch and left her to nap. Lucky stood watching Mary but he didn't come to her when she called. It made Mary sad but sleep soon overcame her and she dozed. When Mary woke for a second she couldn't understand what was wrong.

She couldn't move her head and her body felt heavy and hot. But panic soon gave way to laughter when Mary realized the problem. She was covered, literally blanketed, with every treasure Lucky owned!

While she had slept, the sorrowing dog had made trip after trip to the basement bringing his beloved mistress all his favorite things in life. He had covered her with his love. Mary forgot about dying. Instead she and Lucky began living again, walking further and further together every night.

It's been 12 years now and Mary is still cancer-free. Lucky? He still steals treasures and stashes them in his toy box but Mary remains his greatest treasure.

Hoochie & Gertrude

A news article from a Florida Newspaper:

When Nathan Radlich's house was burgled, thieves left his TV, his VCR, and even his watch. What they did take was a "generic white cardboard box filled with grayish-white powder." (That at least is the way the police described it.) A spokesman for the Fort Lauderdale police said, "that it looked similar to cocaine, and they'd probably thought they'd hit the big time."

Then Nathan stood in front of the TV cameras and pleaded with the burglars, "Please return the cremated remains of my sister, Gertrude. She died three years ago."

Well, the next morning the bullet-riddled corpse of a drug dealer known as Hoochie Pevens was found on Nathan's doorstep. The cardboard box was there too with about half of Gertrude's ashes remaining, and there was this note which read, "Hoochie sold us the bogus blow, so we wasted Hoochie. Sorry we snorted your sister. No hard feelings. Have a nice day."

Monday, June 12, 2006


The FBI had an opening for an assassin. After all the background checks, interviews and testing were done, there were 3 finalists: two men and a woman.

For the final test, the FBI agents took one of the men to a large metal door and handed him a gun "We must know that you will follow your instructions no matter what the circumstances. Inside the next room you will find your wife sitting in a chair. You must kill her." The man said, "You can't be serious. I could never shoot my wife." The agent said, "Then you're not the right man for this job. Take your wife and go home."

The second man was given the same instructions. He took the gun and went into the room. All was quiet for about 5 minutes. The man came out with tears in his eyes, "I just can't kill my wife." The agent said, "You don't have what it takes. Take your wife and go home."

Finally, it was the woman's turn. She was given the same instructions, to kill her husband. She took the gun and went into the room. Shots were heard, one after another. Then a moment of silence. Then they heard yelling, crashing, banging on the walls. After a few minutes, all was quiet. The door opened slowly and there stood the woman, wiping the sweat from her brow. "This gun is loaded with blanks" she said. "I had to beat him to death with the chair."

Sunday, June 11, 2006

Scooter SE (Senior Edition)

Funny, I was just thinking about getting a scooter because of the gas prices! And now this one seems to handle everything plus shelter from the rain!

Getting older has its drawbacks, but I guess there aren't too many good alternatives to getting older. Whenever you see a gathering of seniors, it is an even bet they are talking about everything that is wrong with them.

You know, the usual, memory, urinary problems, knees, eyesight, etc., etc.

Well, I am a senior and I absolutely refuse to discuss these issues with everyone else. If I have a problem, I find a solution. It is not always the solution that I like, but I handle it the best way I know and I don't discuss it with every person I see on the street that is past 62. No sir....

With this in mind, I bought myself a new scooter. I wanted something that was easy on gas and could zip me to the store and about town. This seems to meet my EVERY need. I love it!