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Sunday Bulletin Board: How much will you give for these United States of America? – St. Paul Pioneer Press

OUR PICKS:
KH of White Bear Lake reports: “Subject: Those Were The Days (These Are The Days).
“You never know what you’ll come across when you start going through old things in the basement. Most of it turns out to be overdue for tossing, but occasionally you come across something that catches your eye.
“Recently I came across this essay written by a Wisconsin farm girl in the late ’60s. There is enough evidence to indicate it was written for her ninth-grade English class. In the interest of full disclosure, this beautiful girl became my wife, and I’ve had the absolute privilege of being witness to, and object of, her humble generosity for more than 40 years. Following is her essay:
“‘”So let us go forth to lead the land we love, asking His blessing, knowing that here on earth, God’s work must truly be our own.”
“‘This statement, that was given by President John F. Kennedy at the time of his inaugural address, is probably an answer to the problems of the United States today.
“‘Some day soon we may see a sign like this in your paper: For Sale — One United States of America. Going out of business; I am tired.
“‘Will someone give me one thousand dollars for America? Oh yes, I see a hand. It is the greatest land of all. With this price, you get fifty states to do with whatever you like. You get all the beauty of the mountains to look on whenever you want. You can have all the fish in the ocean, birds in the sky, and animals on the earth. Will someone give me one million dollars? Oh yes, I see a hand.
“‘If you buy this land, you can have all the freedom which the United States has, all the heritage of its past and hopes of the future. You get all the industries, wealth, and minerals. Everything the United States has, you can have. Will someone give me one billion dollars? Oh yes, I see a hand.
“‘With this United States comes all the people of various ancestry from many lands. You get the poor and the rich, educated and illiterate, skilled and unskilled, black and white. You get all the problems of this troubled land. You get the problems of feeding, clothing, and educating its people. Once you buy this land you have the problem of governing and guiding everyone on the right path. Will someone give me two billion dollars? One billion? One half-billion? Oh yes, I see a hand.
“‘With this land, you get the problem of riots, and black power against white power. You get the broken cities and all its poverty. Will someone give me one million dollars? One thousand dollars? One hundred dollars? Oh yes, I see a hand.
“‘With this land you can have the burden of the growing and unpopular war which the youth fear. So now make up your mind; Do you want to buy the USA? Look at all you get. You can have the greatest, richest, freest, nation in the world facing a broken, upset, and shaky future. Will someone give me one billion dollars? One thousand dollars? Fifty dollars? Five dollars? Does anyone have two cents?’”
GRANDMA PAULA reports: “Subject: First puzzle of 2022.
jigsaw puzzle of tropical fish
“I did not get around to starting this colorful puzzle of tropical fish until the end of February. It was only a 550-piece puzzle, so I was able to finish it last night, March 15th. I couldn’t sleep, so I worked on it until the wee hours of the night.
“There was an almost-full moon last night, so that explains my being wide awake until after 1 a.m. I have a hard time falling asleep for a couple of nights when the moon reaches this stage— full or almost full. I don’t know why. Maybe somebody out there in BB land can explain how the moon affects us humans.”
JIM FITZSIMONS of St. Paul: “There’s a parking ramp in downtown Minneapolis that gives me a message after I feed my paid ticket into the device that allows me to exit.
“The screen on the device tells me to drive safely, but I’m not sure it means it.”
winking emoji on a cellphone screen
KATHY S. of St. Paul: “Subject: A little girl muttering ‘Nightmare nightmare.’
“Video recently emerged of Amelia Anisovych, a beautiful 7-year-old girl, singing in an underground bunker in war-torn Ukraine, to cheer people up. Later she appeared in a theater in Poland to sing the Ukrainian national anthem for her people. As she walked out onstage, she muttered ‘Nightmare nightmare’ to steel herself for the performance.
“There is a saying that courage is not created through adversity; it is revealed. May we all face life with even a fraction of her spirit.”
ZOO LOU of St. Paul writes: “Subject: Unholy Marriage.
“What do you get when you cross a vile, manipulative ‘mad monk’ who held sway with the court of Tsar Nicholas II, and a modern, cold-blooded warmonger currently wreaking death and destruction on a neighbor? RasPutin! That name, which means ‘debauched one’ or ‘ill-mannered child’ in Russian, is a perfect description of this unholy marriage.
“To paraphrase an old adage: Vultures of a feather flock together.”
THE DIVINE MUM of Crocus Hill: “Loved this post on Twitter:
“‘My 8 yo daughter met a girl at summer camp last year named “Internet.” I said no way, that can’t be her name but my daughter has been adamant. For almost a year we’ve been having this discussion.
“‘ANTOINETTE. I just found out her name is Antoinette.’
“I shared my story of the F-Bomb, now 15.
“My son came home from kindergarten and said he had a new friend named ‘Alenxander.’ My son had some trouble with speech, so I corrected him all fall: ‘Look at Mummy’s lips: It’s ALEX-ANDER.’
“He just kept saying ‘Alenxander.’
“When he brought the class list home in preparation for Valentine’s Day, I discovered he was right all along.”
An entry in the Permanent Spousal Record at the home of RUSTY of St. Paul: “My wife has many admirable skills, but cooking is not one of them. She is from a family of 10, so the cooking she learned was quantity over quality. Plus: There were four boys, so it was a sprint to finish firsts to get seconds — if there were any.
“My mother was an adventurous cook, a gourmet before that was common. I enjoy cooking, watching cooking shows, reading recipes and trying them.
“When the chef does get a night off, we eat the wife’s glop casserole, gloppy Joes, or takeout (!). My utensil of choice is a large soup spoon, so when I get served a plop of glop from a can and heat-n-eat glop from a box, I mix them together on the plate in hopes that the sum will taste better than its parts. If not, then I keep stirring them around in a circle in hopes that somehow they will go away.
“I like to cook, but I don’t like doing dishes very well. The other day I took a turn, was washing rapidly and stabbed my finger with a steak knife. The skin break was minimal, but as I am on blood thinners, a wee squeeze of my wet finger made it look like it was hanging from a tendon at the last joint.
“I rushed into her sewing room and showed her the dangle. ‘Good Lord!’ she said. ‘Do you need help!?’
“‘Oh,’ I replied, ‘I think it will be OK with some direct pressure, but I don’t think I’ll be able to finish the dishes or do them for the next week.’
“P.S.: Today I cut myself shaving and bled enough where it looked like I might need a face transplant. I thought I had it stopped, but later my wife noticed my face was still bleeding. I told her I couldn’t possibly do any dishes for a week.”
Writes TIM TORKILDSON:
“Marriage is a blissful state.
“It never can grow stale
“when the husband knows he’s got
“a tiger by the tail!”
Another mini-memoir from THE GRAM WITH A THOUSAND RULES “In addition to the music we played all day, our radio station was heavy into religious programming, so our Program Director had to schmooze a lot of preachers for accounts.
“One memorable day, he had some time on his hands while he was waiting for a 2 o’clock appointment with a Man of the Cloth. He and another announcer, my brother-in-law, were both victims of stage mothers and had spent their childhood performing on stage, so with our smiling receptionist as an appreciative audience, they were entertaining her with some old vaudeville tap
routines. With their hats slouched down over their ears and pants legs rolled up to show their hairy legs, they were hoofing away when the realization dawned on them that the receptionist was no longer laughing. She was rolling her eyes — gesturing frantically for them to take a quick exit. Show-biz performers always, they judiciously kept their backs to the windowed entry and ‘Shuffled Off to Buffalo’ stage left as they heard her say: ‘Good afternoon, Reverend! My, you are nice and EARLY for your appointment, aren’t you? I will page the Program Director for you.’”
Or: A nickel here and a nickel there, and pretty soon you’re talking about a dime!@@@
JIMBO of Inver Grove Heights reports: “I had a large financial gain today.
“I was due to take the ’55 Alive’ senior refresher driving class. The cost of the class was $24, but I took it online, and the price was only $23.95!
“That should help me pay for the large increase in the price of gasoline.”
BILL OF THE RIVER LAKE: “Subject: What she said?
“The other day I was talking by phone with a relative about a recent death of a mutual acquaintance. We were discussing the various legalities and challenges that survivors may have regarding the wide variety of economic details that would have to be attended to.
“My relative stated that the survivor had to be a good ‘executioner’ to perform
their duties thoroughly.
“‘What?’ I responded. ‘Don’t you mean “executor”?’
“‘Oh, yes!’
“Words really do have meaning.”
THIS ITEM WOULD BE MY FIRST TRIM:
GRAMMA SHAN: “Three random recollections I have tonight after watching a movie about World War II:
“My father-in-law would never go camping, after World War II in the Pacific. His words: ‘I had enough sleeping in the open in tents in the war.’
“My dad came home from the Pacific war and would wake up in the night with my mom and walk on furniture to get to the bathroom. In the Pacific war, there were always critters on the floor of their tent and it took him some time to get past that.
“My husband, Jimmy, hated being in the rain after Vietnam. The monsoons there were so awful that they ruined the rains for him back home.
“War has so many repercussions that we can’t imagine. I love these men, and it makes me sad how the war changed them.”
THE BICYCLE BABE of the Midway: “Subject: It’s official! Spring is Here!
“For many folks, spring’s arrival is marked by the sighting of the first American robin, or the first day when the thermometer reading is above 50 degrees.
“For us, spring officially arrived at 11 a.m.on Saturday, March 12. That’s when Conny’s Creamy Cone opened for the season. As is our custom, we arrived around 90 minutes in advance to be sure to be first in line. We have managed to be the first customers of the season for 10 years in a row, and the crew at Conny’s is always happy to see us.”
THE GRAND DUCHESS of Grand Avenue: “Subject: Spring signs!
“While some may view their first sightings of robins (some of whom we know winter over) as a sure sign of spring, I spotted a couple others that I see as also hopeful spring has finally sprung: Yesterday I spotted (1) a walker wearing flip-flops and white shorts and (2) a convertible with top down driving down Grand ahead of me!
“Yah for spring!”
Band Name of the Day: Glop Casserole
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