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What I Heard This Week! April 19, 2018

What I Heard This Week April 19, 2018

In Honor of Income Tax Week –I’ve got all the money I’ll ever need – just so long as I die by four o’clock.” Henny Youngman


There’s a new ‘solar’ garden robot named Tertill that looks like a ‘Roomba’ with a baby weed-whacker superglued on its belly. It’s weather-proof, lives patiently in your garden and was invented by the Roomba people. It knows what to cut based on plant size and only cuts plants smaller than an inch. You can put a collar around plants and it will know not to go there, you can use your Bluetooth to check and make sure it is behaving, it’s 4WD, and performs best, in home gardens (not farms), and costs $249.


A survey released on Holocaust Remembrance Day last week shows that many adults lack basic knowledge of the events that happened 70-plus years ago. I’ve said it before; The Holocaust Museum in Houston is a must for families. It’s not light hearted but our children need to know what happened.


An international committee of meteorologists have officially retired four of the 2017 names from the rotating roster of cyclone names. In case you haven’t guessed, they are Harvey, Irma, Maria and Nate. The National Hurricane Center said that the names “don’t bear repeating.” Replacement names in the rotating roster will be Harold, Idalia, Margot and Nigel and I hate to be the bearer of bad news, but hurricane season starts on June 1. Sigh.  First name up is Aletta. I personally, would like to go back to the time when if someone mentioned Harvey, we all thought they were talking about the six-foot, three-and-a-half-inch tall invisible rabbit.


Just watched and listened to the Facebook LIVE Album Release of Blue Water Highway’s new album, “Heartbreak City” – these local kids are putting out some really great music. You’ll love their new album cover and I think you’ll all recognize the picture.  Look it up, I’m not going to tell you.


Earth Day is here, reminding us not only to celebrate our planet but to DO OUR PART. Why, you ask, do we only celebrate something as magnificent as our Earth, on just one day a year? I ask myself that same question every single day. Do your part TODAY and EVERY DAY to help provide a positive world for our children and grandchildren to live in. I’m going to hate to tell them that we could have done something, but we didn’t. We were too busy, too uninterested, or just didn’t think that it really affected us. Shame.


The moment has come…beginning now at age 5, girls can now join Cub Scouting. This will allow participating girls to work towards and earn Scouting’s highest honor, the Eagle Scout. Requirements will be the same for young men and young women and uniforms will remain the same, though the fit and styling may change. Providing good character and leadership opportunities will always be in style. For those of you that poo-poo the idea, I can tell you as the mother of an Eagle Scout, it is a family affair. It will be as much fun for your family as it is for your kids and you will love it. Even camping on the coldest night of the year has only positive memories for me, my son, and my daughter. If this had been available years ago, my 18-year-old daughter would now be an Eagle Scout. There is an ‘information only’ night for boys and girls on May 10th at St. Michaels Catholic Church in LJ. So, pull the kids off their cellphones and load them up. Something awesome is getting ready to happen. I promise. 409-750-3657.


A Florida couple found a letter in a bottle after Hurricane Irma hit last year. The bottle and message had been written by a child in Scotland then thrown into the North Sea in 1992, as a class project about pirates. Yes, 4,500 miles.


Local boy and musician, Justin Gambino, invites you to join him at his album release party at The Clarion on Friday April 27th. Download your FREE ticket at www.justingambino.com. Come support him.


RECENT BIRTHDAYS: Emeritus Pope Benedict XVI is 91. Basketball Hall of Fame Kareem Abdul-Jabbar is 71. Contributing columnist for The Washington Post and Time Magazine, now writes nonfiction and mystery books. Actress Claire Foy is 34. The Crown. Rock singer-guitarist Dave Edmunds is 75. Ringo Starr & His All-Starr Band. Actress-screenwriter Emma Thompson is 59. Country singer-songwriter Chris Stapleton is 40. Actress Emma Watson is 28. Hermione Granger in Harry Potter. Columnist Heloise is 67. She attended Texas State University and full name is Ponce Kiah Marchelle Heloise Cruse Evans. She inherited the nationally syndicated column from her mother, Eloise, the original creator of the “Hints from Heloise” when she died in 1977.

Reba McEntire is 63. On Sunday, she hosted the Country Music Awards and sang a duet of “Does He Love You” with daughter-in-law Kelly Clarkson. Even better, was the fact that she was wearing the same low-cut, sequined red dress that she wore during a performance of the same song at the 1993 CMA Awards. The dress has been housed in a display at the Country Music Hall of Fame until McEntire retrieved it.  She looked GOOD.

Movie director Francis Ford Coppola is 79. Singer John Oates is 70. Actor Jackie Chan is 64. Actor Russell Crowe is 54. Mouseketeer Darlene Gillespie is 77. Singer Peggy Lennon is 77. The Lennon Sisters. Singer Julian Lennon is 55. Actress Robin Wright is 52. Actress Patricia Arquette is 50. Actor Sean Bean is 59. Ned Stark in Game of Thrones. Actress Jennifer Garner is 46.

Former Sex and the City star Cynthia Nixon, 51, confirmed that she will run for governor of NY this year.


It took me forever to finish this. I started, then stopped so many times because it’s just heartbreaking and unfathomable to most human beings. I had tears so please be warned. In Brazoria County (November 2016), a boyfriend of only 2-weeks (Antoine Allen Gorman, 28) was left to care for a 7-week old baby boy and two older children, 3 and 4, while his girlfriend/mother of the children (Tashiay Nelson, 29) was at work. The mom returned from work, found the baby was not breathing and that the children had been left unattended. Hospital personnel attempted to revive the baby for more than 30 minutes. The boyfriend was arrested three days later in Houston. Prosecutors allege that the boyfriend grabbed the baby by the foot and dunked him in toilet water, therefore drowning the child. It was suggested by the Galveston County deputy chief medical examiner that forensic experts needed to test for the presence of ‘semen’ in a swab of the baby’s mouth that he had taken during the autopsy. The medical examiner had found fluid he compared to soap froth in the baby’s windpipe. No sample was taken of this fluid. The DNA swab (a swab…a Q-tip) contained five sperm cells, but this amount was not enough to identify who the semen belonged to. Sigh. The autopsy could not determine how the baby died, but pictures produced in court showed bleeding in the baby’s upper chest, lower abdomen and lungs. The jury reached their conclusion less than ‘60 seconds’ after they retired to deliberate the sentence. Life in prison. ‘Boyfriend’ raised his middle finger and rested it against his face during the reading of the jury’s verdict and then did it again as Brazoria County sheriff’s deputy placed him in handcuffs. He is also currently facing a third-degree felony charge for attempted sexual assault of another inmate. I can’t even imagine what it must have been like for those jurors, the attorneys, and every single person associated with the case. The mom (who should in my opinion, needs to accept some responsibility) met him on dating app, Plenty of Fish. Enough said. There’s only one place I think they should send him and I can assure you, it’s not prison. And I would suggest surgical removal of a body part, and I don’t mean his finger.


A Chinese couple that had been trying to have a baby through in-vitro fertilization were successful four years after they were both tragically killed in a car accident. Four grandparents fought a lengthy legal battle to inherit the frozen embryos and won. Since surrogates are illegal in China, they had to travel to Laos, then the surrogate had to come back to China on a tourist Visa to give birth, so the child would have Chinese citizenship.


The Community Foundation of Brazoria County gave its Philanthropist of the Year award to Vernon and Joyce Stewart who had many of their four children, twelve grandchildren and sixteen great-grandchildren join them on stage to accept the honor. Also honored was Pearland resident and former Pearland Rotary Club president Craig Slater. Congratulations to all and thank you for being great volunteers in our community.


Volunteer Recognition Day is April 20th. Please thank a volunteer. Please be a volunteer. If you don’t know where to start, come by my office and we can talk about it for a few minutes.  “Volunteering is the ultimate exercise in democracy. You vote in elections once a year, but when you volunteer, you vote every day about the kind of community you want to live in.” – Unknown


Forgot to tell you this is Vinyl Week. Columbia Records introduced a 12-inch, 33-1/3 rpm long play record in 1948. Lighter and less brittle than its predecessors, it dominated the recorded music market.


Lake Jackson celebrated again this pastweekend with the 75th Anniversary Pioneers Banquet. Former mayors and residents with stories and memories to tell, packed the LJ Civic Center and celebrated.


Huey Lewis just announced that he has lost most of his hearing therefore making it impossible to find pitch and must therefore cancel all future shows. The belief is that he has Meniere’s disease which causes vertigo and ringing in your ears, but in some cases the symptoms have been known to subside. ‘The Power of Love and I Want a New Drug.’


The Art Car Parade was last weekend. My son was running the fog machines in one of the cars, so I ran up to support him, never giving any thought to the fact that it’s one of my favorite things to do. I just love it! When my kids were little the parade was on Mother’s Day, so we spent the weekend at the Doubletree, doing downtown stuff before and after the parade. Gage and I shared a late outdoor lunch afterwards, so the day was perfect. Favorites were Rain-X mini car with an umbrella spraying water…the singing and dancing lobster and Big Mouth Billy Bass Volvo where the crustaceans and fish all move in unison. One truck was hauling a 12’x10’ full fountain, there was the dragon motorcycle, the traveling popcorn machine, the Astros fan who motorized his lounge chair to travel 20 mph. He crashed right in front of us. A John Deere riding mower with a baby grand piano attached and a tux suited gentleman playing. But my favorite was a skinny 18-20 ft. canoe that was traveling right down the middle of Allen Parkway. Heck, they were all my favorites. Fun day with a trip to Central Market before home.


Barbara Bush died. She reminded me so much of my grandmother that died about 21 years ago. She was something special. Feisty, proud of her grey, and always willing to do the right thing for her family. Here is a nice quote from Barbara Bush. “At the end of your life, you will never regret not having passed one more test, not winning one more verdict or not closing one more deal. You will regret time not spent with a husband, a friend, a child or a parent.”


Remember to do the right thing even when no one is watching. It’s called integrity. Thanks for reading this. Lisa

What I Heard This Week! April 12, 2018

What I Heard This Week April 12, 2018

A 27-year-old Russian woman undergoing routine surgery, died after her IV bag was mistakenly filled with a solution containing formaldehyde instead of saline solution.


The city of Austin is offering free chicken keeping classes as a part of Austin Resource Recovery’s Home Composting Rebate Program. Attend a chicken keeping class, buy a coop, submit a rebate application and receive $75 from the city. This way you keep food waste out of the landfill and recycle your food scraps while getting fresh eggs and creating healthy soil with chicken poop. Love it. They pay you to raise chickens. Brazoria County!?! I believe it is far better to ask for forgiveness than permission, so let’s do it.


An unnamed Texas donor has promised $9-million to Planned Parenthood of Greater Texas to help construct two new health centers in West Texas next year. Nice.


I like martinis. They’re served with an olive, which gives me the feeling I’m eating right.


A Kansas State Department of Labor plans to conduct a full audit of Schlitterbahn Water Park’s daily inspection records before it reopens May 25th, after criminal charges were filed over the decapitation of a 10-year-old on the world’s tallest waterslide there in 2016 when the raft on the 17-story ride went airborne and hit an overhead loop.


Robert Pattinson – “Betty White is one of the sexiest women in America.”

You know I listen to books on tape. It is a main staple of my life. Betty White has written ten books total and I just finished listening to my second one, “If You Ask Me (and of Course You Won’t)” and I have to say that she is just so cute. The book is short and so very sweet. Just fun bits of her life, friends and aging. She says, “I have no idea what color my hair is, and I never intend to find out.” A winner.

Jamie Lee Curtis – “There’s a reason why there is only one Betty White.”


Be an involved parent. Download a parent-teen agreement from AAA.com/teens. Review it with you child to encourage responsible driving. There will be many new drivers on the road as we head towards the end of this school year.


Please do not offer yarn, string or human hair for birds to build nests. Sometimes the material can cause the bird to lose their foot or leg as it winds around, tightens and cuts off circulation. Do not offer dryer lint either. I always thought this was OK, but they say that it not only soaks up water but may have chemicals such as remnants of detergent and fabric softener that are unhealthy for the birds. Do not use pet hair that has been treated with specialty shampoos or tick/lice treatments. Instead, use small twigs under 4 inches. Supply a muddy spot as nesting material for swallows, swifts and robins. Lay out a small amount of grass to dry after you mow. In shaded areas, moss is popular with some hummingbird species.


Yikes. As I tried to figure out what to wear today because IT’S COLD OUTSIDE, I heard that Phoenix just had its first 100-degree day of the year.


CenterFest was great fun with food and beer from Wursthaus, fabulous artists and some of the best music Texas has to offer. Dale Watson was GREAT. We pleased many a young artist with art classes and fun things to do, but we froze our be-hinds off. What the heck happened to our weather?!? Even in the cold, we had a really special 3-day party at The Center for the Arts and Sciences. Mark your calendar to join us next spring…the weather is going to be beautiful.


RECENT BIRTHDAYS: TV personality Willard Scott is 84. You remember him from the Today show but he was the creator and original portrayer of Ronald McDonald. International Motorsports Hall of Fame Janet Guthrie is 80. She was the first woman to qualify and compete in both the Indianapolis 500 and the Daytona 500 and was originally an aerospace engineer. Entertainment executive Michael Eisner is 76. Walt Disney Company and Paramount Pictures. Pro Football Hall of Fame Franco Harris is 68. Pittsburg Steelers and Seattle Seahawks. Pro and College Football Hall of Fame Lynn Swann is 66. Pittsburg Steelers.

Actor Bryan Cranston is 62. What an actor. I’m not sure he gets the recognition that he deserves… Actor Michael York is 76. Movie director Quentin Tarantino is 55. Singer Mariah Carey is 48. Actor Chuck Norris is 78. Actress Sharon Stone is 60. Actor Jon Hamm is 47. Country singer Carrie Underwood is 35. Singer-producer Ric Ocasek is 69. The Cars.  Singer Chaka Khan is 65.  Actress Keri Russell is 42. Actor James Caan is 78. Hot-tempered Sonny Corleone in The Godfather. Singer Diana Ross is 74. Rock singer Steven Tyler is 70. Aerosmith.

Comedian Martin Short is 68. Country singer Kenny Chesney is 50.  Media mogul Rupert Murdoch is 87. I wonder how he is doing since marrying the much younger Jerry Hall in 2016.  Former ABC News correspondent Sam Donaldson is 84. Musician Flaco Jimenez is 79. Singer Bobby McFerrin is 68. Rapper BowWow is 31. Actor Emmanuel Lewis is 47. Webster. Country singer Mickey Gilley is 82. He played his own birthday party at The Clarion at Brazosport College a couple of weeks ago and it was a sold out super show.

Actress Michael Learned is 79. Olivia Walton in The Waltons. Dennis Quaid is 64. Actress Cynthia Nixon is 52. Sex and the City. Actress Keshia Knight Pulliam is 39. Rudy Huxtable, the youngest child of Cliff and Clair Huxtable. Actress Kristen Stewart is 28. Twilight Saga. Former Vice President Al Gore is 70. Actor Christopher Walken is 75. Actress Rhea Perlman is 70. Cheers. Matilda. Rock musician Angus Young is 63. AC/DC.


John Wayne Walding – “We owe it to the fallen to live well.”  I was given a gift this week. Our speaker at The Women’s Lecture Series at Brazosport College was John Wayne Walding who was born on the fourth of July and is named ‘John Wayne’ – a true American. I was expected to give the blessing after his talk but had difficultly collecting myself enough to say the first word. He had us laughing and wiping our eyes for an hour. Mr. Walding lost the lower half of his right leg to sniper fire during an operation in the Shok Valley of Afghanistan yet returned fire for four more hours with the severed limb tied to his thigh. His awards and badges include the Silver Star, Bronze Star, Purple Heart, Combat infantry badge, Airborne air assault, and is the first amputee to graduate the Special Forces Sniper School. I felt privileged and honored to even sit next to him for just a short lunch. There is a book by Mitch Weiss and Kevin Maurer, “No Way Out: A Story of Valor in the Mountains of Afghanistan,” that tells the tale of the Battle of Shok Valley. Thank you, John Wayne Walding for your service to our country.


Useless information: Months that begin on a Sunday will always have a Friday the 13th. ps – That’s tomorrow.


A Florida school superintendent was pulled over for illegally passing a school bus as police were running a bus safety campaign. Officers had issued 115 tickets and 14 warnings for failure to stop for a school bus during the campaign. Oops.


In Kentucky, a pizza deliveryman saw a mobile home on fire, ran in, shut off the breaker, then got down on his hands and knees, made his way back to the kitchen and got the home owner out and to safety.


A Kansas man was arrested after breaking into his ex-girlfriend’s home and hiding in the attic several hours before falling through the ceiling. Giggle. Then a woman applying for a job at a jail in New Hampshire was arrested for a previous theft in Maine. Some days it just doesn’t pay to get out of bed.


You will always find a book on tape in my car. Since I work so many hours, I just don’t get to read as often as I like, so I listen to books. Always. I just finished Gene Wilder reading his autobiography “Kiss Me Like a Stranger.” It was great! In his book, he reads of finding these words in the kitchen of his future wife, Karen Boyer. It is titled “After a While” and was written by Veronica Shoffstall. It’s too nice not to share.

After a while you learn the subtle difference

between holding a hand and chaining a soul,

And you learn that love doesn’t mean leaning

and company doesn’t mean security,

And you begin to learn that kisses aren’t contracts

and presents aren’t promises,

And you begin to accept your defeats

with you head up and your eyes open

with the grace of a woman, not the grief of a child, and you learn to build all your roads on today,

Because tomorrow’s ground is too uncertain for plans,

and futures have a way of falling down in mid-flight.

After a while you learn

that even sunshine burns if you get too much.

So, you plant your own garden and decorate your own soul, instead of waiting for someone to bring you flowers.

And you learn that you really can endure…

That you really are strong,

And you really do have worth.

And you learn and learn…

With every goodbye you learn.


Have a great week and as always, thanks for reading this…Lisa

What I Heard This Week! April 4, 2018

What I Heard This Week April 5, 2018

A couple of years ago, my daughter and I were often (very often) in the car driving to another town for water polo, so we listened to ‘Serial’, an investigative journalism podcast hosted by Sarah Keonig who narrates a nonfiction story over multiple episodes. The story was about Adnan Syed, who was convicted in 2000 in the murder of Hae Min Lee, his ex-high school sweetheart, whose body was found buried in a shallow grave in a Baltimore park the year before. Syed was sentenced to life in prison. His case made international headlines in 2014 when the Serial podcast profiled his conviction and cast doubt on his guilt. Syed has maintained his innocence throughout the years. On March 29th, Adnan Syed was granted the right to a new trial. It was stated that he received poor legal counsel because his attorney didn’t make contact with a key witness. It’s definitely worth listening to the podcast.


Since March 2016, China lost control and had not been unable to communicate with their space station, Tiangong-1, which translates to “Heavenly Palace” in English. On Sunday, the school bus-sized, 9.4-ton structure re-entered the Earth’s atmosphere and the majority of the structure most likely burnt up upon re-entry. The rest of the space debris is believed to have fallen into the Pacific Ocean northwest of Tahiti.


It’s Prom season and it’s a really, expensive adventure for these kids so help them out. If you have ’prom’ things just hanging in your closet, call The Source Weekly to sell them and we will run your ad for FREE. 979-285-9200


Suspected mass murderer Nikolas Cruz, who allegedly killed 17 and injured 17 more with an AR-15 rifle at a high school on February 14, has been getting stacks and stacks of fan mail and love letters sent to the Broward County jail, along with hundreds of dollars in contributions from teenage girls, women and even older men. There are photographs, cards, and letters with some suggestive remarks, of course. Groupies are also joining Facebook communities to talk about how to help the killer. The public defender’s office says that they’ve never seen anything like it before. Cruz has not seen the mail because he is on suicide watch. Go figure why this would happen.


Blogger, Jennifer S. White – “I never thought dashing to Target without kids would feel like a mini-vacation, but it does.”  Jennifer, there’s not a mom around that doesn’t feel your joy! It has been called, ‘whimsical escapism” with an air of sophistication and serenity. Yep. Target.


Wisconsin police released body camera footage that captured the moment a suspect allegedly bit a K-9 dog. Yep. The ‘man’ bit the police dog.


Kidney disease has claimed the life of Ensa Cosby, 44-year-old daughter of Bill Cosby. She stayed out of the public spotlight for most of her life but did appear on The Cosby Show in a single episode in 1989. Jury selection began this week as the 80-year-old Bill Cosby now faces the charges that he drugged and molested former Temple University athletics administrator Andrea Constand at his home in 2004.


Hawaii lawmakers approved legislation that will make it legal for doctors to fulfill requests from terminally ill patients for prescription medication that will allow medically assisted suicide. Good.


Remember 2001 Space Odyssey? Well, this week is the 50th anniversary. Film director Stanley Kubrick hired NASA engineers and consultants to make the sets as authentic as possible. He even asked astrophysicist and author Carl Sagan for help in depicting extraterrestrial life. It was not a box office or critical success when it came out, but today it’s considered one of the most influential films of all time and perhaps the greatest science-fiction film.


RECENT BIRTHDAYS: Rock musician Eric Clapton is 73. He has been a member or played with The Yardbirds, Derek and the Dominos, Delaney & Bonnie, Blind Faith, John Mayhall & the Bluesbreakers, The Dirty Mac, Cream, The Plastic Ono Band, The PowerHouse, The Louisiana Gator Boys, The Immediate All Stars, Chick Shack, Sting and the list goes on. Actor Robbie Coltrane is 68. He was hand-selected by J.K. Rowling to portray Hagrid the Giant in the Harry Potter series. Perfect pick. Actress Doris Day is 96. Oh, my.

Actor-Director Warren Beatty is 81. Yikes. TV Host Peter Marshall is 92. Singer Celine Dion is 50. Actor Paul Reiser is 61. Mad About You. Singer Tracy Chapman is 54. Rapper MC Hammer is 56. Philippines President Rodrigo Duterte is 73. Country singer Reba McEntire is 63. 1984 Olympic gold-medal gymnast Bart Conner is 60. He is married to Romanian Olympic gold medalist Nadia Comeneci.

Rapper Salt is 52. Salt-N-Pepper, Actor Vince Vaughn is 48. Singer Lady Gaga is 32. Singer Emmylou Harris is 71. Yikes. I’m showing my age but that’s another one that’s hard to believe Singer Wayne Newton is 76. Actor Alec Baldwin is 60. Comedian Eddie Murphy is 57. Actress Ali MacGraw is 79. Rhythm & blues singer Rudolph Isley is 79.

Reggae singer Jimmy Cliff is 70. Along with Bunny Wailer he is one of only two living musicians to hold the Order of Merit, the highest honor that can be granted by the Jamaican government for achievements in the arts and sciences. Movie Director Barry Sonnenfeld is 65. Men in Black. Singer Susan Boyle is 57.


Winnie Madikizela-Mandela, South Africa’s ‘Mother of the Nation’ died at 81.


After a frantic 12-hour search in the fast-moving sewage of Los Angeles, a 13-year-old boy was rescued by firefighters after being swept almost a mile away when a plank broke covering an access portal to the sewage. It sounded like the sewage system is a maze underground. What a nice outcome.


Remember hearing that a woman shouldn’t use hair dye while she is pregnant? Well, doctors are now saying that hair dye generally isn’t in contact with the skin on your head long enough to do any significant damage or cause harm. If you have any cuts or scrapes on your scalp, it could increase absorption, but it’s a no-brainer that you shouldn’t EVER be putting hair dye on open cut. But there are still a huge bunch of believers that say NEVER dye your hair while pregnant. It’s a good thing that grey is in style.: 😊


Tom Hiddleston – “Every villain is a hero in his own mind.”


Elvis Presley changed history on a Gibson J200 guitar. Eric Clapton’s famous solo on the Beatles’ “While My Guitar Gently Weeps’’ was played on a Gibson, and when young B.B. King fled a burning building and realized he’d left his Gibson behind, he risked his life by going back inside to retrieve it. The fire had been accidentally started by two men fighting over a woman, and King gave his hollow-body guitar her name – Lucille. Now, after 116 years, the beloved Gibson guitar maker is fighting for life while facing debt of as much as $560-million due this summer. What happened?


Since the worldwide success of Disney-Pixar animated fantasy film, Coco, traditional Mexican guitars (the Paracho-style guitar played a central role in the movie) have seen a surge in sales in the tiny Mexican town of Paracho where prices for hand-made guitars range from 2,000 Mexican pesos ($104) to 20,000 pesos for those made with finer wood.


Lucinda, thank you for the cake that you brought by our office for Easter. It was delicious.


These guys had waited for five months but right before the start of the game at Minute Maid Park this week, one by one the Houston Astros players walked up on stage to receive their little black box containing their 2017 World Series 10.55 carat ring with 214 diamonds and nine natural orange sapphires.  The rings are huge. They have to be, to have Minute Maid Park, the trophy, 2017, and Houston Strong on there – and that’s just on one side of the ring. Go, Astros. We’re so proud.


Art. Music. Fun. This week at CenterFest. Yes, there will be art but let’s talk about the music which will be fabulous. Join us Friday night for Dale Watson. Only $20 general admission. Watson is an silver-pompadoured American country/Texas singer, guitarist, songwriter from Austin that sells out wherever he plays, and believe it or not, HE IS PLAYING HERE ON FRIDAY NIGHT. He believes in authentic country music, calls it Ameripolitan music, and as a result has become a favorite of critics, jazz, rock ‘n’ roll and alt-country fans. Pull up a video, put on your dancing shoes and I’ll see you on Friday night for craft beer, food, art and music at The Center for the Arts and Sciences. 979-265-7661. Saturday, we have family fun, more craft beer, Art March, art market, and music with Corey McGaughey at noon, Erica Honore at 3pm and Lost Vertigos at 6pm. Then Sunday is the E-Flat Porch Band at 1pm and Cole Degges at 4pm. I try to keep you informed of fun things to do but you have to turn off the TV, put up the lawnmower, grab your keys and get out of the house.


A note from my daughter: If you can, come on out and help Brazoswood High School National Honor Society make cancer history. Come to Slade Field on April 7th from 2-8pm and enjoy games, food, entertainment and more. Proceeds benefit cancer research at University of Texas MD Anderson Cancer Center. Cancer has affected each and every one of us in some way. Let’s do our part.


San Francisco’s ‘Killing My Lobster’ troupe has a program that teaches sketch comedy to kids, then grownups take their work, rehearse it, add crazy props and perform it in front of a live audience. Now, that sounds like FUN theatre.


According to the new American Kennel Club rankings, Labrador Retrievers remain the country’s most popular purebred dog for the 27th year while German Shepherds and Golden Retrievers have the No. 2 and No. 3 spots. French Bulldogs are No. 4 with the Bulldog coming in as No. 5. The Beagle, Poodle, Rottweiler, Yorkshire Terrier and German Shorthaired Pointer are No. 6 through 10.


The BIG Lake Jackson 75th Diamond Jubilee Parade is set for Sat., April 14th. Everyone is invited to join the parade fun which will start at 11am at LJ Intermediate, travel downtown LJ, then return to LJI. Line-up begins at 9:45am. BISD is partnering to help with the parade, so our kiddos will be out in full force to be a part of this exciting event. Brazoswood HS and LJI bands will be marching with groups from all LJ schools and communities. Friends & neighbors from area businesses, industry, civic and community groups, come join in and honor the city. Get your fire truck, float, scout group, ball team, dance group, church members, clubs and decorate your cars, flatbeds, bikes or yourselves to walk in the parade, join city dignitaries, former mayors and Grand Marshall Grant Scoggins to celebrate rich history and honor LJ Pioneers. It won’t be much of a celebration without you so, come on. LakeJackson-Tx.gov


A Canadian teenager bought a $4 scratch lottery ticket and a bottle of sparking wine to celebrate her 18th birthday and as luck would have it, then had to decide whether she wanted the $1-million lump sum or $1000 per week for the rest of her life. She considered her options and her age then decided to go for the weekly sum for life. What luck.


Have a great week and as always, thanks for reading this…Lisa

What I Heard This Week! March 29, 2018

What I Heard This Week March 29, 2018

What I Heard This Week by Lisa Baker

Mister Rogers, the gentle TV host who educated generations of preschoolers on Mr. Rogers Neighborhood, has been honored with a US Postal Service stamp. Mr. Rogers died in 2003 at age 74. The stamp has a smiling Mr. Rogers in his trademark cardigan along with the puppet character, King Friday. Those were the good old days.


There was a passenger who was bumped off a full United Airlines flight and was given a $10,000 voucher after refusing an $800 voucher, then even refused a $2000 voucher. She told them that she didn’t want travel credit, she wanted cash. So, they offered a $10,000 voucher. Dang, they would have had me at the $2000 level. I am so easy. Actually, the flight wasn’t overbooked, just at capacity because one seat was broken, and could not be used.


Reminder: You don’t have to rebuild a relationship with everyone you’ve forgiven. Just because you’re at peace, doesn’t mean they’re not still toxic.


It was called the Million Dollar Mouse Project. After a 125-year infestation, more than 200,000 mice have been eliminated (exterminated) from New Zealand’s Antipodes Islands, an 8-square-mile island located 470 miles southeast of New Zealand. The story is that the rodents were accidently introduced in 1893 from either a shipwreck or by seal hunters and have since feasted on the island’s insects and birds, causing many local extinctions.


You can call him Sir Ringo or Sir Richard because Ringo Starr (Richard Starkey) finally received his long-awaited knighthood from Prince William last week. Paul McCartney was knighted in 1997. Ringo says, “I had dinner with him (McCartney) last week and we were both actually laughing about where we came from, and we’ve ended up in the palace and its now Sir Paul and Sir Richard.” Let’s face it, you’ve been royalty in our eyes forever, guys.


Billy Graham – “Someday you will read or hear that Billy Graham is dead. Don’t you believe a word of it. I shall be more alive than I am now. I will just have changed my address. I will have gone into the presence of God.”


Standing desks are very popular. Standing up to work was supposed to be so much better for you than sitting. Well, new research is showing that people who stand at work are nearly twice as likely to develop heart disease, back discomfort, and swelling of veins, as those that sit more often. Recommendation is now suggesting you rely less on standing desks and instead, take more walks at work. Sigh.


San Francisco has voted to ban the sale of fur as it now becomes the largest US city to approve the prohibition. The fur ban would apply to coats and anything else featuring real fur, including keychains and gloves. Business owners are concerned because the San Francisco Chamber of Commerce estimates that fur sales account for at least $40-million a year. The ban would allow for resale of vintage fur at places like resale shops. Is that like banning cowhides in Texas?


Frank Avruch, who played Bozo the Clown for over a decade, died at the age of 89. Whoa…wait a minute.  I remember Bozo and he lived in Waco and I got to go to the taping of his show for a birthday party when I was in first grade. I didn’t know that there was more than one Bozo. This is very upsetting. Another child fantasy squashed.


RECENT BIRTHDAYS: Actress Joanne Woodward is 88. The Three Faces of Eve. Consumer advocate Ralph Nader is 84. His 1965 publication of the bestselling book Unsafe at Any Speed, a critique of the safety record of American automobile manufacturer became known as one of the most important journalistic pieces of the 20th century. Singer Josh Groban is 37.

Actor Timothy Dalton is 72. James Bond in The Living Daylights (1987) and Licence to Kill (1989). He dated Vanessa Redgrave from 1971-1986. Actor Gary Oldman is 60. Comedian-actress Rosie O’Donnell is 56. Actor Scott Eastwood is 32. He looks just like his daddy. Designer Bob Mackie is 79. He was best known for his dressing of entertainment icons Joan Rivers, Cher, RuPaul, Barbara Eden, Bette Midler, Diana Ross, Judy Garland, Liza Minnelli, Tina Turner, Carol Burnett and Mitzi Gaynor. He was the costume designer for Carol Burnett on The Carol Burnett Show during its entire 11-year run.

Singer Nick Lowe is 69. How do you talk to an Angel? Designer Tommy Hilfiger is 67. Actor Robert Carradine is 64. Actress Kelly LeBrock is 58. The Woman in Red with Gene Wilder. Actor Jim Parsons is 45. NFL quarterback Peyton Manning is 42. Olympic track and field gold medalist Jackie Joyner-Kersee is 56. Sports Illustrated for Women magazine voted her the Greatest Female Athlete of All-Time. Former astronaut James Lovell is 90. Activist and author Gloria Steinem is 84. I bet she is not happy that Walmart just pulled Cosmopolitan Magazine from their check-out lines. I say, GO Walmart.

Singer Aretha Franklin is 76. Singer musician Sir Elton John is 71. Actress Marcia Cross is 56. Actress Sarah Jessica Parker is 53. Auto racer Dania Patrick is 36. Actor Paul Michael Glaser is 75. Tell me that’s not so. I just loved him in Starsky and Hutch. His wife, Elizabeth Glaser was a major American AIDS activist and child advocate who contracted HIV very early in the modern AIDS epidemic after receiving an HIV-contaminated blood transfusion in 1981 while giving birth. Like other HIV-infected mothers, Glaser unknowingly passed the virus to her infant daughter, Ariel, through breastfeeding. Ariel was born in 1981 and died in 1988. The Glaser’s’ son, Jake, born in 1984, contracted HIV from his mother in utero, but has lived into adulthood and now works full-time for the Elizabeth Glaser Pediatric AIDS Foundation. Elizabeth Glaser died in 1994.


Hubert de Givenchy (1927 – 2018) was known for his effortlessly chic clothes with simplicity and elegance being the hallmarks of his designs. He dressed Elizabeth Taylor, Jackie Kennedy, Wallis Simpson, and Audrey Hepburn in Breakfast at Tiffany’s, Sabrina, Funny Face, plus many others. He once said, “The little black dress is the hardest thing to realize because you must keep it simple.”  We all know how important the LBD is in our closet. He died at the age of 91.


Remember that April Fools is on Easter Sunday so if you wake up and see the Easter Bunny in disguise, you’ll know that he was just having a good day…


The Cape Town “Day Zero” has now been pushed back to around July 9th, the time at which all water taps across the South African area are scheduled to be turned off due to low water reserves. Residents and tourists have been asked to use only 13 gallons per day to preserve the remaining supply. Egad.


A 37-year-old Houston-area US Army recruiter is accused of sending a snapchat photo of his genitals to a 16-year-old HS student that he had met while recruiting in Deer Park. Shame.


The city of Houston has secured $9.4-million for the installation of high-water warning systems at 40 specific Houston locations to help drivers avoid dangerous flooding. Sensors, cameras and computer components along with warning lights and signs will be installed this year.


A Portuguese airline has apologized to passengers after they were stranded overnight after an airport staffer alerted security that a co-pilot was stumbling and reeked of alcohol. Security grounded the plane, and when one passenger called the airline out on Twitter, the airlines replied, “the flight was canceled due to the pilot’s incapacity and that they will go through an internal investigation process and act accordingly, taking the necessary and consequent measures.” I say, the airlines did the right thing.


Ethan Couch, the “affluenza” teen, who was under the influence of alcohol and drugs in 2013, driving on a restricted license and speeding in a residential area when he lost control, crashed into a group of people trying to help a motorist, killing four and injuring nine, was convicted and ordered not to consume alcohol. Two passengers in his truck suffered serious bodily injury, one with complete paralysis. He had stolen the liquor from Walmart. You know, a real classy kid. His slap on the hands was to receive ten years of probation. A video then surfaced showing him playing beer pong at a party, so he fled to Mexico with his mother (and his mother never went to jail, but that’s another story.)  Well, he will now be released from the Tarrant County jail on April 2 after serving only 720 days. A witness had argued at his trial that he didn’t know right from wrong. Hmmm. 720 days. I know why I never get called to jury duty.


My Christmas gift from my son happened to be tickets for the three of us to see the Lorde concert in Houston last week. Her music is described as Indietronica (indie, electronica, rock and pop music.) Not what I would typically listen to everyday, but when you’ve been invited to attend a concert with your kids, you get your pants on and get ready to go. I like Lorde, enjoy several of her songs and was excited to attend, but I am naïve, inexperienced and starry-eyed about today’s music, so I kept looking for the band. I finally swallowed my pride, took a deep breath and asked my daughter, all the while trying to look educated, sophisticated and worldly. No band. It’s all electronic music. That was a new one for me.


Last week-end, The City of Lake Jackson presented Coming Home, two concerts that celebrated 75 years of music and heritage for LJ. ‘Locally grown talent’ entertained us for two evenings and believe me, we were entertained. We sang along and danced in our seats with Robert Ellis, Cole Degges, Zack Kibodeaux and Greg Essington of Blue Water Highway, Will Hearn, Claire Kibodeaux of The Blue Jazz Faction, Christian Wiggs of The Vintage 15 and the Brazosport Big Band. There was live music on the patio of The Clarion before the show and after the show. Texas Beer Refinery and brew master John Hearn (also home grown) supplied wine and craft beer all while we were honored with the most memorable celebration of great music and entertainment from some of the finest talent to come out of The City of Enchantment. I was so proud of these ‘kids’ aka adults. There’s a BIG 75th Diamond Jubilee Parade set for Saturday, April 14, 11:00am. They need floats. Sign up.


CenterFest! April 6-8 is a huge weekend of FUN at The Center…art, live Texas Music, 2nd annual Art March (above) and food & drinks provided by Wurst Haus. Activities for your entire family. Kids 12 and under are FREE. I always try to keep you informed but you’re going to have to come see for yourself. I can only do so much without full access to your calendar and vehicle. This is a fun way to kick-off CenterFest! Create fun, wearable works of art with an old pair of shoes. Design your shoes then come show ’em off in our second annual Art March on Saturday, April 7. The winning 2017 entry from Lil’ Anna Klein is still on display in the lobby of the Center for the Arts and Sciences where our 2018 winner will be displayed. Entry is easy, no experience or training is necessary to have fun. www.brazosortcenterfest.org  


Thank you for reading this,

– Lisa

 

What I Heard This Week! March 15, 2018

What I Heard This Week March 15, 2018

What I Heard This Week by Lisa Baker

I was reprimanded by one of my readers last week because Thursday March 8th was International Women’s Day, a day to celebrate social, economic, cultural and political achievement of women. I’m so sorry. I was unaware of this day, and I now stand corrected. Thank you, Mark.  In my heart, I believe that I celebrate every day by raising a strong, compassionate, confident daughter that likes and respects herself enough to demand respect from those around her – she is going to make a difference in this world. I am raising a son that not only honors women but understands that every woman is capable of doing any-and-every little thing she can educate herself to do. Yes, boys and girls are different, that’s why my daughter had a Little Tyke’s workbench and my son had a kitchen set. At my house, it’s more than a day, it’s a lifestyle.


Stephen Hawking – Intelligence is the ability to adapt to change.”


Stephen Hawking, the world’s most famous physicist and one of the finest minds in the world, was diagnosed with a debilitating disease (ALS) in graduate school and given just a few years to live. He was confined to a wheelchair for decades and in later years, he communicated by blinking his eyes to control a computer and a digitally simulated voice. The 2014 movie, The Theory of Everything, was award winning. (After seeing it, I don’t understand why he never received a Nobel Prize.) Hawking said, “Despite my disability, I have managed to do most things I want. My main regret is that it has prevented me from playing with my children and grandchildren as fully as I want.”  He died Tuesday night at the age of 76. He has the greatest quotes.


Stephen Hawking – “One, remember to look up at the stars and not down at your feet. Two, never give up work. Work gives you meaning and purpose and life is empty without it. Three, if you are lucky enough to find love, remember it is there and don’t throw it away.”


Last week, my daughter wanted to go to White Oak Music Hall and see Coin, an American Indie pop band. The tickets were only $20, and I like their music, so I agreed. The venue is awesome, and the parking was a dream. If I wanted to drink, I had to have an armband which meant they would check my driver’s license. As good as that would have make me feel, I opted for water. It was an hour and a half dance party, the lighting was great, and the boys are so cute, but man, did I feel old. The music had so much bass it made my teeth hurt and it was just so stinking loud. Apology to my mom. What goes around, comes around.


An 18-year-old waitress at a La Marque Waffle House has received a $16,000 scholarship from Texas Southern University after she helped cut up food for an elderly customer that was on oxygen, had trouble with his hands and was struggling to eat his meal. She was working to save money for college. Nice story and smart move for TSU. We need more compassion in the world.


Stephen Hawking – However difficult life may seem, there is always something you can do and succeed at.”


The US Army Corps of Engineers said leading up to and during Harvey they worked diligently with officials in Houston to inform the public on flooding risks from reservoirs but that some local officials didn’t issue advisories for days.


There was a sale at the Alamo Village Set in San Antonio, where over 2,000 items from movie sets dating back to the early 1950’s, were sold. Scripts from Lonesome Dove, antiques and artifacts from films like The Alamo, Davy Crockett, and The Man Who Came Back. Bet that was interesting.


RECENT BIRTHDAYS: Former astronaut Frank Borman is 90.  Apollo 8 and oldest living former American astronaut. Actor Michael Caine is 85. He has hinted that his days as a film star may be coming to an end, but he was great in Interstellar. And remember Alfie. Composer-conductor Quincy Jones is 85. He has recently apologized for recent claims that included he knows who killed JFK, that Michael Jackson stole many of his hit songs, that Marlon Brando had sex with Richard Pryor and other stuff that makes me think he’s either not getting enough attention or he’s not just getting old, he’s acting old. He acknowledged that his friends “called him out.

Prince Albert II is 60. Ruler of Monaco. Singer-musician Taylor Hanson is 35. Hanson. Olympic gold-medal gymnast Simone Biles is 21. Actress Barbara Feldon is 85. Agent 99. Actress-singer Liza Minnelli is 72. Singer-songwriter James Taylor is 70. Singer Mary Wilson is 74. The Supremes. Oooh Child. Rock singer-musician David Gilmour is 72. Longtime member of Pink Floyd. Director Rob Reiner is 71. Meathead. Likely the most underrated film director of the modern era. The Princess Bride, When Harry Met Sally, Misery, A Few Good Men. Reporter John Stossel is 71. Hmmm. He doesn’t look like 71.

Comedian Billy Crystal is 70. In ‘When Harry Met Sally,’ he said, “When I buy a new book, I read the last page first. That way, in case I die before I finish, I know how it ends.”

Boston Celtics legend and NBA Hall of Fame JoJo White died from complications of dementia that was brought on by the removal of a benign brain tumor in 2010. He was 71.


Texas-New Mexico Power Co. is warning customers of a scam in which threatens that your electric service will be disconnected if you do not make an immediate payment. Hang up on them and call the number on your bill if you wish to check your billing status.


A 10-month old French Bulldog puppy named KoKito, died after a United Airlines flight attendant told the owners to place the dog and its carrier in the overhead bin for a three-hour flight leaving Houston to NY. United Airlines said that this was a tragic accident, pets should never be placed in the overhead bin and that they assume full responsibility. As a new mother to our two ‘Harvey’ rescue kittens, I realize how quickly a pet becomes a huge part of the family.


Stephen Hawking – “People who boast about their IQ are losers.”


Being in the newspaper business is ‘pretty fun’ most days. I get to meet a lot of new people and find out about how and why they went into business. This last week I met Jayson at Jay’s Oil 2 Go. This one is a winner. Book your appointment, pick the time and location and he will come to you for your oil change. It comes with free vehicle inspection, tire and brake check, window wash and a vacuum of the interior of the vehicle. I would call fast because this nice guy is going to be busy. See his ads on pages 16 and 19.


The Texas Department of Public Safety will begin recording the height, weight and waistlines of its more than 4,000 troopers during their routine physical readiness test. The state has slowly increased its fitness standards since 2010 and some officers are concerned that this is an attempt to push out older troopers. Bah. Maybe they just want healthy officers.


According to Ancestry.com, the most popular last names in the state of Texas are Garcia, Smith and Martinez. Popular names in other states include Smith, Johnson, Williams, Jones, Anderson, Brown, and Miller. Minnesota adds Nelson, North Dakota adds Olson and ‘Irish’ Massachusetts adds Sullivan. Hawaii has Lee, Wong and Kim and California has Garcia, Hernandez and Lopez.


A Nederland woman was charged with continuous sexual abuse of a family member and sentenced to 50 years after she forced an 11-year-old into sexual acts in 2015. It occurred a second time in 2016 when the victim was 12. The woman will not be eligible for parole and will be a registered sex offender for life. Not long enough or tough enough in MY opinion.


Audrey Hepburn – “To plant a garden is to believe in tomorrow.”


For the love of Texas: Since Harvey, I haven’t worked in my garden except to dig up sweet potatoes that came up accidently in my compost pile. They were big, fat and delicious because my “compost gardens” are always better than the stuff I plant on purpose. One year I had 5 different kinds of tomatoes all winter long just from my compost. With that said, I feel that, on occasion my job is to remind you about pollinators, so here goes. Too soon, flowers will only exist in photographs without pollinators.  1 out of every 3 bites of food you eat is available because of the butterflies & bees, and according to the Arkansas Natural Heritage Commission, they service over 180,000 different plants and more than 1,200 crops. Without these butterflies & bees, our food supply will be in peril. They are losing their nesting and feeding habitats because of pollution, climate change, disease as well as the misuse of chemicals. What can you do? Plant flowers that continuously flower for as long as our zone allows. For us, that’s a pretty long period of time. I had five different kinds of zinnias last year, along with the tiny flowers that bloom when I allow my broccoli, cilantro, and dill, to go to seed and I plant milkweed for the monarchs. So, please plant flowers. Have fresh water for the pollinators, don’t forget to feed the hummingbirds and the birds, and eliminate the use of pesticides in your yard and garden. Become a part of the solution.


This is interesting. New research is questioning the use of the usual saline IV bags used on almost every patient in every hospital in the US. By using a different intravenous fluid, it could greatly reduce the risk of death or kidney damage. Some doctors are hoping the results will persuade hospitals to switch.


Elvis ‘D/8520’ Presley performs shows as the late superstar Elvis A. Presley and has now officially filed to run as the Libertarian nominee for a congressional seat in Arkansas. All Shook Up.


Stephen Hawking – “Silent people have the loudest minds.”


The Walt Disney Co. is investing $100-million to bring themed treatment rooms, linens and gowns featuring each child’s favorite characters, play cars with Disney-themed games, activities and even pop-up movie theaters in children’s hospitals across the nation. They will begin with Texas Children’s Hospital in Houston. WooHoo


The state of Oregon has sued Nevada gambling mogul Steve Wynn and the board of directors of Wynn Resorts for failing to act in the best interests of shareholders and stop sexual misconduct. Oops.


James Dean died at the age of 24 in 1955. The cherry-red jacket that he wore in Rebel Without a Cause is expected to bring as much as $600,000 when it goes up for auction.


It was so windy when I was walking to the gym that I was blown into the wine store.


If you hear a story that you feel needs to be in this column, let me know (in case I forget or don’t see it.) I won’t promise you that I’ll use it, but I’ll consider it for sure. Thank you for the emails and phone calls saying such nice things about the column. I love to hear from you and I appreciate the fact that you picked this paper up to read today. Lisa@TheSourceWeekly.com

– Lisa

 

What I Heard This Week! March 8, 2018

What I Heard This Week March 8, 2018

What I Heard This Week by Lisa Baker

Tourists catching a flight out of Las Vegas can now dump their leftover legal marijuana in metal containers set up at the airport. The 10 green bins are named “amnesty boxes” and are there to prevent agents from finding pot on passengers during security screenings since the drug is legal in Nevada but still banned by the US government. Years ago, I remember Hobby Airport allowing me to mail my baby buck knife back to myself because I had left it in my purse. If someone had told me then that someday we would be dumping pot at the airport…


In 2005, Franklin Graham visited Angola Prison (Louisiana State Penitentiary) where the Graham family had donated more than $200,000 to help build chapels and support prison ministry. In earlier years, a new warden had decided that prisoners shouldn’t be buried inside crate-like boxes not much sturdier than cardboard, so a casket-building program was started. When the younger Graham visited, he asked to have the carpenters make a casket for his mother, Ruth Bell Graham and his father, then to burn the builders’ names into the wood. The caskets cost $215 each. Ruth Bell Graham died in June 2007 and Rev. Billy Graham died last month. The caskets said, “Hand-Crafted by Richard Liggett, Clifford Bowman and Paul Krolowit.”


eeeeeek.  A woman was at Memorial City Mall one morning last week before the retail store where she worked opened for the day.  A man attacked her in the restroom, choked her with a plastic bag used as a rope, hit, kicked and stomped on her then left her unconscious on the floor. She sustained injuries to her face and lost several teeth. Warning. Never let your guard down. It can happen anywhere.


Anne-Elisabeth and I went to the Rodeo on Friday evening and saw Leon Bridges perform. He was, of course, spectacular. The new stage rolled out, his band members were dressed in sharp black suits, the lights went down, and Leon Bridges appeared in black and white silk polka-dotted shirt and black pants. No boots and jeans for these guys. It was perfect. But, there are no words to describe the new stage. We had $6 tickets and it cost $7 to ride in from the Reed Road Park-n-Ride. So, for $13 each, it was a very affordable and entertaining evening. Go see the stage!


Rodeo Food: This year there is a bacon cheeseburger with a funnel cake bun, bacon-wrapped cinnamon rolls, deep-fried cookie dough on a stick, chocolate cobbler, fried bread pudding on a stick, pizza on a stick, cookie-dough parfait, liquid-nitrogen-dipped blobs of cotton-candy-flavored whipped cream…artic bonbons that disintegrate on your tongue and create plumes of smoke in your mouth, a foot-long corn dog slathered in crushed Flamin’ Hot Cheetos and more. Oh, and salad.


Flamin’ Hot Cheetos were the invention of then 55-year-old Richard Montanez, who was a janitor at a Frito-Lay plant. He was inspired by the Mexican dish Elote (corn dusted with spices) so he thought to add some chili powder to unflavored Cheetos. The rest is history and now Fox Searchlight will film a movie about his wild success story. Nope, I’m not kidding. Coming soon to a movie theatre near you.


Experts are warning that video footage is becoming very easy to recreate. It’s call a deepfake – an ultra-realistic fake video made with artificial intelligence software. Until now, computer-generated video was a laborious pursuit only available to big-budget Hollywood producers, but recently hobbyists (that’s a nice word for them) have been experimenting with more powerful tools which make it so easy to make fake, look real. So, if you find a “Lisa Does Dallas,” don’t believe it. Just kidding. Experts worry that people will use it to blackmail others. The article said that we need to educate people that this is a possibility, so warning. You read it here first.


RECENT BIRTHDAYS: Actors James and Oliver Phelps are 32. Harry Potter. Author Tom Wolfe is 88. The Bonfire of the Vanities. Actress Laraine Newman is 66. Saturday Night Live. Singer Jay Osmond is 63. Pop musician John Cowsill is 62. Rock singer Jon Bon Jovi is 56. Actor Daniel Craig is 50. Singer Chris Martin is 41. Magician Penn Jillette is 63.  Actor Dean Stockwell is 82. Energy Secretary Rick Perry is 68.

Musician Emilio Estefan is 65. Actress Patricia Heaton is 60. Gay rights activist Chaz Bono is 49. Actor director dancer Tommy Tune is 79. Hall of Fame auto racer Mario Andretti is 78. Actress Bernadette Peters is 70. Country singer Jason Aldean is 41. Former CBS newsman Bob Schieffer is 81. Former professional wrestler Ric Flair is 69. Actress Tea Leoni is 52. Latin singer Julio Iglesias Jr. is 45.


David Ogden Stiers who was the tall, balding, somewhat snobbish surgeon on M*A*S*H, died at the age of 75. He was also the voice of Cogsworth, the strong-willed pendulum clock in the 1991, Beauty and the Beast.


My peeve for the week. Lowe’s on Saturday morning. The lines were really, long outside, so I decided to do self-checkout lines inside. Huge mistake. I was carrying everything because someone had borrowed my basket while I was looking the other direction, (hope you enjoy that Boston fern that I hand-picked). There were “only” about ten people in each line inside ☹. Three registers out of four were working. The fourth one had a bag over its head like an empty gas pump. It was excruciating to watch the difficulties involved in getting through those lines. By the time I left, there was only one register working. Wouldn’t it be better, more cost & time efficient to have a trained real person to check people out?


According to Wikipedia: A pet peeve is a minor annoyance that an individual identifies as particularly annoying to themselves, to a greater degree than others may find. Its first usage was around 1919. The term is a back-formation from the 14th-century word peevish, meaning “ornery or ill-tempered”. So, there is it.  I’m ornery and Ill-tempered.


The Oscars: Jennifer Garner had on a drop-dead gorgeous cobalt blue gown with her hair parted and swept to one side. It was stunning. She was stunning and my favorite. Ben Affleck, eat your heart out. You didn’t deserve her. Rita Moreno showed up wearing the same dress that she wore 56 years ago (1962) when she won the Oscar for “West Side Story.” The skirt fabric was Obi, which is the sash that Japanese women use in their kimonos. She simply changed the neckline and added a necklace. That’s true style in my book, but she shouldn’t have changed the neckline. Lupita Nyong’o was another perfect look in gold. I don’t think I’ve ever seen her in anything BUT perfect. Helen Mirren looked fabulous. She has so much style. Emma Stone wore a silk pant suit that was really, nice. Did you know that until 1940, women could be arrested for wearing pants in public and it wasn’t until 1972 that girls were guaranteed the right to wear pants to school. I remember my first pant suit – the top matched the pants and was the same length as my fingertips, khaki-colored polyester double knit that is likely still around today because polyester doesn’t die. Oh, yes. The Oscars. Keala Settle performed “This Is Me” from “The Greatest Showman.” Nice. Eddie Vedder played Tom Petty’s 1999 single, “Room at the Top,” which was beautiful, while the Academy recalled the lives and legacies of those that had left us this year. Many were upset because they missed some important people like Robert Guillaume, John Hillerman, Adam West, Jim Nabors and Rose Marie but it would be hard to remember them all. They’re dropping like flies. 😊 A man was arrested after stealing Frances McDormand’s trophy during the Governors Ball. She was reunited with Oscar and celebrated with a double cheeseburger from In-N-Out Burger.


Thank you for reading this today.
Hope you have a great week…
– Lisa

 

What I Heard This Week! March 1, 2018

What I Heard This Week March 1, 2018

What I Heard This Week by Lisa Baker

There is a revival of the cocktail culture, and in an attempt to encourage more women to drink scotch whiskey, Johnnie Walker is rolling out a limited U.S. edition and changing their logo from Johnnie, the traditional top hatted man, to Jane Walker, a female version. Women, are you encouraged to go buy Johnnie Walker or is this just plain silly. Why do women need their own whiskey?


The Family of a Houston woman is suing her former landlord and a pest control company, claiming that a bedbug-killing heat treatment used in the woman’s apartment, killed her. The treatment was a non-chemical method which raises the temperature to above 139 degrees. The woman entered the apartment after treatment and in a short time, lost consciousness and was rushed to the hospital where she died of hyperthermia – a condition that results when the body absorbs more heat than it can dissipate.


Flu activity has declined for the third straight week, so it’s a hopeful sign that the season may have peaked – but no one will say that out loud since it’s been such an unusually bad year. I still have tea tree oil and other essential oils running at my office every day. None of us had the flu.


Rita Schiano – “Talking about our problems is our greatest addiction. Break the habit. Talk about your joys.”  This was very interesting to research because it makes you think about ‘The Laws of Attraction.’ Do you want to attract people that only talk about their problems or do you want to spread positive energy that creates an environment for others around us to do the same. Could we change the world by letting go of negative conversation? This has my attention.


Mattel, best known for clean-cut Barbie, is releasing a game called Flushin’ Frenzy that sends brown plastic poop flying into the air. Hasbro released Toilet Trouble where water squirts on you from a toy toilet. This year they are releasing Don’t Step In It, a game where players are blindfolded and have to avoid stepping in piles of poop made out of a clay-like substance. Hog Wild Co. has Sticky the Poo, where you throw a squishy poop shaped mess with eyes and it clings to the wall.  Their rainbow version is called Sticky Unicorn Poo and it has rainbow colored poop. Poopeez makes squishy collectibles with names like Pooji, Skid Mark and Dumpling which is aimed at boys age 7-years and up.  Geez. Go buy your kids a game where they can actually learn something.


March 2nd is “Read Across America Day,” Grab a book & read so your kids don’t have to play poop games.


In early 2016, General Mills starting using natural sources for color, such as turmeric, strawberries and radishes in their Trix cereal. Well, people whined… “natural just doesn’t taste as good as artificial dyes and flavors,” so now Classic Trix is back on the shelves, along with the healthy version. Hmmm.


Reddit cofounder Alexis Ohanian, installed four giant billboards in California proclaiming that Serena Williams is the “greatest momma of all time,” to welcome her back to tennis after giving birth in September. Eighteen years ago, I had my daughter and went back to work (with her in tow) in less than a week and no one gave me a party.


Barbara Streisand loved her Coton du Tulear, Samantha, so much that she recently revealed that her two new pups, Miss Violet and Miss Scarlett, were cloned via cells extracted from Samantha’s mouth and stomach.


RECENT BIRTHDAYS: Singer Mitch Ryder is 73. CC Rider, Devil with a Blue Dress On.  Singer Michael Bolton is 65. Film music company executive David Geffen is 75.  Asylum Records in 1970, Geffen Records in 1980, DGC Records in 1990, and DreamWorks SKG in 1994. Actress Tyne Daly is 72. Cagney & Lacey.  Country singer Mary Chapin Carpenter is 60. Actor William Baldwin is 55. Author Amy Tan is 66. The Joy Luck Club. Actor Jeff Daniels is 63.

Britain’s Prince Andrew is 58. Author Toni Morrison is 87. Beloved. Movie director Milos Forman is 86. Amadeus. One Flew Over the Cuckoo’s Nest. The People vs. Larry Flynt. Musician Dennis DeYoung is 71. He is credited as the writer of more Styx songs than any other Styx member. Actress Cybill Shepherd is 68. Moonlighting. The Last Picture Show. Taxi Driver. Psych. Actor John Travolta is 64. Game-show host Vanna White is 61.

Actor Matt Dillon is 54. Rapper Dr. Dre is 53. Actress Molly Ringwald is 50.  American artist, author, actress, fashion designer and heiress Gloria Vanderbilt is 94. Actor Sidney Poitier is 91. Actress Sandy Duncan is 72. Newspaper heiress Patricia Hearst is 64. Basketball Hall of Fame Charles Barkley is 55. Model Cindy Crawford is 52.


Nanette Fabray, Broadway actress and singer, died at the age of 97. In her 20’s, she began to lose her hearing and several years later she learned that she had otosclerosis, a disease of the bones of the inner ear that limits the transmission of sound. She underwent several operations from the 1950s to the 1970s that helped restore her hearing. She learned sign language and served on several national commissions to help provide education and job training for people with hearing loss. On the Carol Burnett Show in 1968, she performed an a cappella version of over the Rainbow singing and signing.


Don’t read this one if you don’t care for blood and guts talk. There is a 26-acre research farm affiliated with Texas State University close to San Marcos, called the Freeman Center ‘body farm’ (Forensic Research Anthropology Facility.) Yep, for the past ten years researchers have been studying how human remains decompose and what that means for solving crimes involving dead bodies. 500-bodies later, there are remains in various stages of decay, bodies under tarps or tires, under the ground, and tied up. The lab trains cadaver dogs and helps locate human remains.  What happens to a body depends on the season, heat, humidity, whether the person was on strong antibiotics, the intensity of the sun – all such interesting information.


Singer Paul Simon announced that his 2018 spring tour will be his last. He feels that the travel and time away from his family, detracts from the joy of playing. Simon is 76. He definitely “still has what it takes.”


American Farm Kids: At a high school in North Dakota, a group of students played a prank. They let three goats loose inside the school. But before turning them loose, they painted numbers on the sides of the goats: 1, 2 and 4. School Administrators spent most of the day looking for No. 3. And you thought there was nothing to do in North Dakota!

 


“To make an oven interior look new, put ¼ cup baking soda in a bowl, then add enough dish soap to form a paste. Remove the oven racks and set them aside. Wipe out scorched food bits with a paper towel and then rub the paste on with a sponge. After 10-minutes, scrub and wipe the interior clean with a damp microfiber clot.” HGTV Magazine


Two shoplifting suspects running from police scaled a fence to get away…oops, they landed in the secure parking lot of the police station. They were arrested.


This is too funny, and I need to share it with you. I’ll set the scene. Boudreaux and Thibodeaux are on their lunch break: Boudreaux and Thibodeaux dey work togetter on da Red River near Moncla. One day, dey sit down to eat when ole Boudreaux pulls out dis long round plastic ting out his lunch box. Thibodeaux say, “Mais, Boudreaux, what dat is you got?” He tell Thiboudeaux, “Dat’s someting new dey done come out widt. It’s what you call a Termis Bottle.” So, Thib ask, “A Termis Bottle…..,what dat do????”
Boudreaux say, “Mais, you put someting hot in it an it keep it hot. You put somting cold an it keep it cold.” Thibodeaux reply, “Oh man, what dey gonna tink of next????? Hey, by da way, what you got in dat new Termis Bottle?”
Boudreaux say, “A cup of soup an two popsicles!!!”


In California, an employee of Assemblywoman Cristina Garcia (40) has filed a complaint with the state. He was fired after he refused to play ‘spin the bottle’ with his boss. It is the second accusation of sexual misconduct against Garcia, who is currently on a voluntary unpaid leave of absence while the Assembly investigates claims that she drunkenly groped a former legislative staff member. Staffers have accused her of fostering an improper work environment, including allegations that she discussed sex and used alcohol at work. Hmmm.


A librarian who had been cataloging old books at New York’s Union College found a grimy, leather-bound 1793 almanac where tucked inside was a yellowed envelope with the hand-written words “Washington’s hair.” Inside was a silvery lock of hair tied with a thread. The book belonged to Philip Schuyler, son of General Philip Schuyler who served under Washington during the Revolutionary War and founded Union College in 1795.  It is likely that Martha Washington gave the snip of hair to Eliza Schuyler, daughter of the general and wife of Alexander Hamilton. The envelope notes, “from James A. Hamilton given him by his mother, August 10, 1871.”  And that is your wee bit of history lesson for today.


Pollutants are generally associated with cars, but according to a study published in Science magazine, our deodorants, perfumes, hair sprays and soaps that keep us smelling good and petroleum-based chemicals in paints and other consumer products, along with pesticides, are as harmful as the emissions from today’s cars and trucks.  So, use as little of the product as you can to get the job done. I use a natural mineral salt deodorant that contains none of the harmful chemicals found in regular deodorants. It’s called Crystal and I give it five stars. Years ago, you could only find it at health food stores, but I now buy it at HEB.


Dick’s Sporting Goods Inc. one of the largest retailers of its kind in the US, is ending sales of assault-style rifles and banning the sale of guns to people younger than 21, according to company Chairman and CEO Edward Stack. He said, “We support and respect the Second Amendment, and we recognize and appreciate that the vast majority of gun owners in this country are responsible, law-abiding citizens. But we have to help solve the problem that’s in front of us. Gun violence is an epidemic that’s taking the lives of too many people, including the brightest hope for the future of America – our kids.”


An impressionist painting by Edgar Degas that was stolen from a Marseille museum in 2009, was found by French customs officers. It was inside a suitcase on a bus and none of the passengers claimed the suitcase during the search.


Thank you for reading this today.
Hope you have a great week…
– Lisa

 

What I Heard This Week! Feb. 22, 2018

What I Heard This Week February 22, 2018

What I Heard This Week by Lisa Baker

A flight from Dubai to Amsterdam had to make an emergency landing in Vienna after one of the passengers had uncontrollable, noisy flatulence. He was asked to stop by his disgusted seatmates who then complained to the crew. The captain then issued a warning to the two men complaining, a fight broke out, the plane made an emergency stop to remove the two men that complained and two women that happened to be sitting on the same row as the men involved, but the farting man stayed on the plane. Get the guy some Beano. The four individuals removed from the plane have been banned from flying Transavia Airlines in the future.


People love a good comeback story. Disgraced and disappointing Johnny Manziel says he was self-medicating with alcohol for bipolar disorder and wants to make a comeback to football now that all that is behind him. This comes at the same exact time that Manziel is releasing a new clothing line called ComebackSZN (Comeback Season for the Hip-Challenged.) How convenient. I’ll believe it when I see it.


According to Google, the top searched “how to spell” word in Texas, is Maintenance.


There is a new exhibit at Houston Museum of Natural Science that opened earlier this month called “Message in a Bottle.” It’s a collection of messages in all sorts of bottles found while cleaning up riverbeds and waterways throughout the nation over the past twenty-years, by Chad Pregracke. There are messages of heartache, anger, jokes, song lyrics, messages written on dollar bills and a Yahtzee sheet.


Mattel’s revenue fell 11 percent last year, so they are looking to turn business around by updating classic brands such as Barbie and Hot Wheels. However, the card game, Uno, had sales up 12 percent in 2017. An Uno smartphone app is in the works for the spring and Mattel has launched a way to play the card game through Facebook Messenger.  Now Mattel is launching the new card game Dos (isn’t that clever) and will have similar rules as Uno, except players make two piles of cards and can throw down two cards at a time instead of one. Cost: $5.99 and it goes on sale at Target in March. Time for family game night again.


As Steve Wynn resigns as chairman and CEO of Wynn Resorts amid sexual misconduct allegations, the company that bears his name is leaving him without any severance or compensation and prohibits his involvement in any competing gambling business for two years. Bummer. Imagine that. Consequences for bad behavior.


There is a norovirus outbreak among staff and volunteers at the Pyeongchang Olympics. Last week the total was up to 261 cases. The outbreak has been traced to contaminated water used in food preparation. Excuse me, I’ve got to go wash my hands.


Houston police said an SUV plunged from the third story of a parking garage after the driver accidentally hit the gas pedal instead of the brakes. Firefighters rescued the woman who was not hurt.   This one would be hard to live down.


The flu seems to be slowing down just a bit. Texas’ new death toll stands at 4,153. Yikes.


 

Scott Israel – Broward County Sheriff – “I’ve said this time and time again. While the people who are victims of mental health illnesses in the country are being treated, in the opinion of this sheriff, they should not be able to buy, surround themselves with, purchase or carry a handgun. Those two things don’t mix.”


RECENT BIRTHDAYS: Actor Joe Don Baker is 82. Tennessee Sheriff Buford Pusser in Walking Tall. Author Judy Blume is 80. Tales of a Fourth Grade Nothing.  Actor-talk show host Arsenio Hall is 62.  Actor Josh Brolin is 50. Actress Christina Ricci is 38. Wednesday Addams in The Addams Family. Actor William Katt is 67. He was the ill-fated prom date in Carrie and his mother was Barbara Hale who was Della Street in the television series Perry Mason. Actor LaVar Burton is 61. Kunta Kinte in Roots.

Actor-rapper Ice-T is 60. Tennis Hall of Fame John McEnroe is 59. Actress Jane Seymour is 67. Singer Melissa Manchester is 67. Blues-rock musician Gary Clark Jr. is 34. Football Hall of Fame Jim Brown is 82. Actor Lou Diamond Phillips is 56. Basketball Hall of Fame Michael Jordan is 55. Actress talk-show host Ellen DeGeneres is 60. Actor Tom Selleck is 73. US Air Force Major General Charles E. ‘Chuck’ Yeager is 95.  Michael Joseph Jackson Jr. aka Prince Michael Jackson is 21.

Musician Peter Tork is 76. The Monkees. Rolling Stone announced today that Micky Dolenz and Mike Nesmith will tour for the first time as a duo, this June. Peter Tork is skipping this tour to focus on his upcoming Lead Belly tribute blues album, “Relax Your Mind” and Davy Jones died at age 66, in 2012. I, for one, would sure love to see them.


Victor HugoMusic expresses that which cannot be said and on which it is impossible to be silent.


Reverend Billy Graham, preacher to more people than anyone in history, first noted evangelist to take his message behind the Iron Curtain, and advisor to past presidents, has died at age of 99. He was known as a master of the media since he was the first to use telephone, television and satellites to deliver his message to homes, churches and theaters around the world.


A team of 75 staff members from eight specialists at Texas Children’s Hospital have successfully separated 13-month-old identical twin girls conjoined who shared a chest wall, lining of the heart, diaphragm, liver and a large blood vessel connecting their hearts, a very complex procedure.


Useless Information: Zebras are black with white stripes, not white with black stripes. Even under the white hair, they have black skin.


A Prairie View A&M student who said she had been sexually assaulted on campus, filed a report with the university’s police department, went for a sexual assault exam and identified her assailant as policy requires, but  her coach responded by telling her multiple times that she did not need to alert her parents and then…drum roll please…the coach paid for a plane ticket to help the alleged assailant avoid arrest and disciplinary action by the university. The coach left his position several months later, telling the girl’s teammates that she was the reason for his departure. The teammates then retaliated against her. Six, on-campus rapes were reported by Prairie View A&M in 2015. Yikes. Not good.


I am thankful for all those difficult people in my life, they have shown me exactly who I do not want to be.


Former first Lady, Rosalynn Carter is recovering from surgery to remove scar tissue from a portion of her small intestine where a cyst had been removed many years ago. Mrs. Carter is 90.


McDonald’s is taking cheeseburgers and chocolate milk off the Happy Meal menu, in an effort to cut down on the calories, sodium and saturated fat and sugar that kids consume at its restaurants. You can still ask for cheeseburgers and chocolate milk, but it will not list them on the menu. I’m a firm believer that cheeseburgers and chocolate milk are ok, but always in moderation.


According to the Center for Science in the Public Interest, “Commonly used food dyes such as Yellow 5, Red 40, and six others, are made from petroleum and pose risks such as hyperactivity, cancer and allergic reactions.” Despite these concerns, millions of pounds of these petroleum-based dyes continue to be used in our food. No warnings. No labels, No nothing. So, avoid products that contain names with numbers. Pick up organic vegetables, fruits and spices that can be used to color frosting and foods naturally, like beets, cranberries, pomegranate, strawberries, roasted bell peppers, paprika, mango, carrots, golden beets, curry turmeric, saffron, blueberries, basil, spinach, mint, avocado and green tea powder.


Quincy Jones – “They were the worst musicians in the world.”  Quincy Jones speaking about the Beatles. Huh? So wrong.


Fergie, of the Black Eyed Peas, sang the national anthem at the NBA All-Star Game and tried something different. She was on pitch, but her tempo, musical accompaniment and very sexy delivery were not exactly typical for a sporting event. Charles Barkley joked that he “needed a cigarette” after her performance. Shaquille O’Neal liked it and said, “leave her alone.” Rosanne Barr said that she sang “better” when she did it almost thirty years ago. Hah. That was a silly thing to say.


Tom Petty’s family says his death last year was due to an accidental drug overdose, because he suffered from emphysema, a fractured hip and knee problems that caused him great pain. He should have rested but was committed to finishing his tour which he had just finished a few days before he died in October at age 66. Too many pain medications.


KFC has been forced to close stores across the UK due to the lack of chicken. What can I say. I hope they have Popeyes, Church’s or Cane’s.


omgosh. Justin Theroux and Jennifer Aniston broke up. In a perfect Hollywood world, Brad Pitt is waiting for her at the corner. In a perfect world, Brad would be waiting for ‘all of us’ at the corner.


Police in a Philadelphia suburb were notified that a person in a Tyrannosaurus rex costume was walking their kid to school this week. I don’t see that as a problem and neither did the officers.


In a suburban Detroit home, a man destroyed his home by using a smoke bomb to get rid of skunks. A spark quickly spread from a crawlspace to the first floor, through the walls and the attic, finally destroying the entire home. No skunk carcasses were found in the ruins.


Dang. I missed it. While we are all glued to our TV’s watching the Olympics, sixty-four dachshunds were at Sam Houston Race Park competing in the 11th Annual Weiner Dog Races. Roxy, age 6, took the top spot with rescue Snookie, age 7, coming in second.


Lexus was the most dependable vehicle brand for the seventh consecutive year in JD Power’s annual survey. Porsche, Buick, Infiniti and Kia were the other top five performers and the worst were Chrysler, Land Rover, Fiat, Jeep and Cadillac.


A 61-year-old Florida man was arrested after using his apartment wall for target practice. His neighbors that shared the wall, awakened to a loud bang, finding holes in their bedroom and living room walls.


Thanks for reading this…


– Lisa

What I Heard This Week! Feb. 15, 2018

What I Heard This Week February 14, 2018

What I Heard This Week by Lisa Baker

Billionaire casino mogul Steve Wynn stepped down as CEO of Wynn Resorts, which he founded, because of sexual misconduct allegations. Not a single person, but dozens of former and current employees have accused him of pressuring employees to have sex with him – and other things. He blames his ex-wife for somehow pulling this all together in order to ruin him. As I roll my eyes, I wonder to myself, “How did she do that.”


The Food and Drug administration approved the first drug for breast cancer patients with inherited BRCA gene mutations who have already undergone chemotherapy. The drug has been on the market since 2014 for ovarian cancer. This is great! We were all clapping until we got to the part about the drug, Lynparza, costing $13,886 a month without insurance. I remember sitting by myself in the doctor’s office the day I received the diagnosis of breast cancer and feeling sick to my stomach.  I can’t help but believe the only thing worse would be to have someone tell me that there is a drug out there, but you can’t have it because it’s too expensive. I’m speechless. $13,886 for a month.


Italians recently began to understand why their postal service is considered to be unreliable. More than a half-ton of undelivered mail was discovered in a postman’s garage. That’s 1,260 pounds. Police were tipped off when volunteers from a recycling center reported receiving 25 big yellow containers from the postal service, with mail inside. So, a thief with a conscience for recycling. He can’t be all bad.


The South African city of Cape Town is running out of water. Soon. Like it should happen around the middle of April. It’s blamed on climate change and the city’s growing population. They need rain. When they run out, people will turn off their taps until it rains and line up for rationed water. It will be the first major city in the world to run out of water.


Japanese scientists are suggesting that when they used the chemical Dimethylpolysiloxane (found in silicone) that they can mass produce hair follicles that grow hair when transplanted into mice. This chemical is also used to cook French Fries. If I see a bunch of bald guys lined up at McDonald’s when I head home…


A McKinney, Texas doctor, linked to at least six overdose deaths and who had prescribed more than 1.5 million hydrocodone pills over a 37-month period, was sentenced to 10-years in prison and more than $50,000.


The wife of Donald Trump Jr. opened a letter addressed to her husband and found white powder inside.  She reportedly started coughing and feeling nauseous after that and was sent to the hospital. Turns out, it was just cornstarch. That’s pretty rough stuff…cornstarch.


Ancient Egyptians regarded a tattoo as a sign of wealth. I’ve told you before in this column that the inks used can contain printer toner and car paint. A new study has found that the inks also can trigger a permanent allergic reaction, invade lymph nodes and cause tumors at the site of the tattoo. Just saying.


One-year-old Lucas Warren is the new SpokesBaby for Gerber. His photo was chosen from more than 140,000 entries. He will receive $50,000 and his image will be used in the company’s social media posts. His parents were very excited and hope that this will help increase the acceptance of special needs children. Lucas has the biggest, prettiest smile you have ever seen, and has Down Syndrome.


Me: Let me sleep. Brain: LOL no, let’s stay awake and remember every stupid decision you ever made in your life. Me: okay.


RECENT BIRTHDAYS: Actor James Spader is 58. I loved him in Boston Legal. Country singer Garth Brooks is 56. He is opening and closing act at the Rodeo this year. Actor-comedian Chris Rock is 53. Actor Ashton Kutcher is 40. Former Argentinian President Isabel Peron is 87. She was the third wife of Juan Peron (behind second wife, Eva Peron) and served as president of Argentina after his death in 1974.  Former Vice-President Dan Quayle is 71. Rock singer Alice Cooper is 70. Country singer Clint Black is 56.

Olympic gold-medal boxer Oscar De la Hoya is 45. Journalist Roger Mudd is 90. Actress Mia Farrow is 73. Singer Joe Ely is 71. His music is described as honky-tonk, Tex-Mex, and rock and roll. Actress Judith Light is 69. Country singer Travis Tritt is 55. Baseball Hall of Fame Hank Aaron is 84. Football Hall of Fame Roger Staubach is 76. Actress Jennifer Jason Leigh is 56. Fast Times at Ridgemont High.

Actress Faye Dunaway is 77. Bonnie and Clyde. Actor Carl Weathers is 70. Apollo Creed in Rocky. He was killed off by an internet hoax last week but lived to tell us he is actually alive and well.  Movie writer-director Steve Soderbergh is 55. He secretly shot an entire movie using his iPhone. Rapper actor LL Cool J is 50. Rock singer-musician Dave Grohl is 49. Foo Fighters. Actress Julia Louis-Dreyfus is 57. Seinfeld. She is now fighting breast cancer.

Actor Patrick Dempsey is 52. Dr. McDreamy. Actor Robert Wagner is 88. Singer Roberta Flack is 81. The First Time Ever I Saw Your Face. Killing Me Softly with His Song. Feel Like Makin’ Love. Olympic gold-Medal swimmer Mark Spitz is 68. World Golf Hall of Fame Greg Norman is 63.  Actress Emma Roberts is 27. Actress Chloe Grace Moretz is 21.

Singer producer T-Bone Burnett is 70. In 2005, he worked with actors Joaquin Phoenix and Reese Witherspoon for their singing roles as Johnny Cash and June Carter Cash in the film Walk the Line and produced the film’s soundtrack album and wrote the score.


LL Bean, famous for their lifetime product replacement program guarantee, is no longer interested in replacing worn-out boots that you found at a garage sale. Yes, there has been some abuse from customers and non-customers, so now LL Bean is forced to have stricter rules which require providing proof of purchase and one year to make a return.  I worked for Sears in high school and a lady (I use that term lightly) brought in a bathing suit that was many, many years old. Even the style was out-of-style. It looked like she had tied it to her bumper and drug it through the streets. We had to go back through years of hand-written (no computers) steno pads, then gave her money back. That still bothers me.


By the way, thanks for reading this today…


Please spay or neuter your pet. Seriously. Harvey affected every one of us. Some more than others. Since my daughter and I rescued the litter of five kittens in the middle of the storm, I seem to have a huge weak spot for the SPCA.  From August 24th to September 24th, they received 783 pets into their care.  Support them if you can. They need your help with either money or supplies. SPCABC.org


A 20-year-old Florida man that won a $452-million Mega Millions jackpot, chose to take a one-time lump-sum of $281,874,999. He said, “I intend to take care of my family, have some fun along the way and cement a path for financial success so that I can leave a legacy far into the future.” Nice words.


A dinosaur skeleton has been unearthed in Egypt’s Western Desert. It’s the size of a city bus and researchers are hoping to find many more of the new dinosaur species which are long-necked herbivores. It lived about 80-million years ago and is being called the “holy grail” of dinosaur discoveries.


Useless Information: The dot over the letter ‘i’ is called a tittle. Tittle also means ‘iota’ or ‘little bit’ as in, I don’t care one tittle.


A North Dakota woman was sentenced to life in prison without parole after killing a pregnant 22-year-old neighbor by cutting the baby from the mother’s womb as she faded in and out of consciousness.


A professor of psychology at San Diego University, says, “The more we learn about kids and smartphones, the more we’re going to see that limiting their exposure is a good idea.”  I say it’s so hard for kids to separate what they see on social media from real life. Snapchat or Instagram photos make everyone look happy and everything is perfect, which is not always real but who is going to post something that makes them look bad. They post the newest clothes, the cutest pets, and ‘everything perfect.’ It is believed that this is contributing to teen depression which had a 60% rise in the US between 2010 and 2016. There is a company now that manufactures lockable phone pouches that students keep with them but can’t be opened until the end of the school day. Hmmm.


Fidel Castro’s oldest son committed suicide at the age of 68 after being treated for depression in recent months. His nickname was Fidelito or Little Fidel because of how much he looked like his father who died in 2016.


If you get into a collision on the road, you need to quickly determine if everyone is safe, then you need to think outside the box and figure out if the crash was an accident or was it staged. Yep. Get your normal information…name, address, driver’s license, car insurance and license plate number, then look for witnesses. Ask for their statements about what they saw and make sure to get their contact information. Make a recording of the event with your cellphone, take photos of the witnesses, the other drivers involved, their DL info and count the passengers in the other vehicle – con artists often file claims for people who weren’t in the car during the collision. Beware of tow trucks that appear before you’ve called for help. Beware of people who try to encourage you to use a specific doctor, lawyer or body shop. When in doubt, call the police. Record the officer’s name/s and get a copy of the report for your insurance company.


Netflix cut its ties with Kevin Spacey last fall after he was accused of sexual misconduct with a minor, then suspended production on House of Cards and wrote Spacey’s character out of the series, then canceled a new movie project where Spacey would have starred as the late author Gore Vidal. It was reported that all in all, this could cost the company around $39-million. Sorry, Netflix.


The Printing Museum, in Houston, which has been closed since a May 2016 fire, has reopened with a fresh look, updated displays, and a bindery with tools for making books. Printing isn’t dead, and this museum is fun. 1324 West Clay. 713-522-4652. Thank you for supporting print.


The city of Lake Jackson is 75 years old. The first shovelful of dirt to build LJ was turned on December 8th, 1941, one day after the attack on Pearl Harbor. Dow Chemical was building the first plant along the Texas Gulf coast near Velasco and Freeport therefore needed housing for the families of the employees who built and then operated the plant.  Alden Dow was a student of Frank Lloyd Wright and developed a master plan for the city. Check out page ___ for planned celebrations honoring this event. Happy Birthday Lake Jackson, City of Enchantment.


Tomorrow is National “Slap your Annoying Co-Worker Day.” If you’re not sure who that is, I would call in sick. Just kidding.


– Lisa

What I Heard This Week! Feb. 8, 2018

What I Heard This Week February 8, 2018

What I Heard This Week by Lisa Baker

A student spit on a teacher at Cypress Woods High School so the teacher took off his belt and struck the kid. Wrong thing to do. Of course, it’s all on video. If these teachers don’t think that they are being set up to be videoed, then someone needs to let them know. First off, we don’t know all the facts, but if a child of mine spit on a teacher, there would be hell to pay. But some of us are raising a bunch of kids that don’t understand consequences because there are none. When I was young, and dinosaurs roamed the Earth, we all believed that there was a paddle in the principal’s office that had holes drilled in it so there was a swooshing noise as it flew through the air and made contact with your behind. When someone got in trouble, we all got quiet and listened, so we could hear if there yelping involved when the paddle hit home. We would never, ever have spit on a teacher. I’m not saying that all teachers are perfect because THEY ARE NOT, but we need to raise children to respect not only the position, but to respect themselves or we’re not going to have any teachers worth anything because NO ONE WILL WANT TO BE A TEACHER, or fireman, or police officer. Next week I’ll talk about the paddle with the nails in it…or so we thought.


The first delivery of prescription marijuana in Texas has been delivered. There are three dispensaries in the state, two in Austin and one in Schulenburg.


An autopsy has shown that the young unclothed boy, 3 or 4-years old, whose body washed up on a Galveston shoreline in October, showed signs of neglect and abuse, malnourishment and he had died before being placed in the water, not drowning as had been previously believed. The FBI is offering a $10,000 reward for successful identification and location of the family members caring for the boy at the time of his disappearance. Call 1-800-CALL-FBI or 409-765-3776. Someone, somewhere knows something. Crime Stoppers is offering a $5,000 reward. They released the actual photo of the child the day they found him as a last option. He was a beautiful child with long eyelashes.


Meryl Streep, 68, has filed an application to trademark “Meryl Streep” so others may not profit from her name and fame. I didn’t know you could do that.


Nearly forty years after his wife drowned, investigators are now calling 87-year-old actor Robert Wagner a ‘person of interest’ in the death of Natalie Wood. It is believed that he hasn’t told the whole story about what happened during the boat trip the night of her suspicious death. Really!


The father of two young women that gave statements at the sentencing hearing of Larry Nassar, asked the judge if she would give him “five minutes in a locked room” with Nassar. The judge said no, so he asked for one minute, then rushed across the room to take care of Nassar himself. The father was released without charge. I can’t believe that this hadn’t happened earlier and most of the parents that I know, agree with me.


Not far from the temples of the ancient city of Tikal in northern Guatemala, even the most experienced archaeologists were surprised to find about 60,000 homes, palaces, tombs and even highways hidden in the humid lowlands under the cover of tree canopies in the jungle, built by the Maya over a thousand years ago. Researchers found the structures by shooting lasers down from planes that pierced the thick foliage and painted a 3-D picture of the ground below.


DeLorean Motor Co. plans to start manufacturing the new DeLorean locally in Humble, in early 2019. When the original two-seater rolled off the production lines in 1981, it sold for about $26,000. A used DeLorean now typically costs $55,000 to $65,000. The new DeLorean will sell for around $120,000.


Have you seen the new concert stage for the Rodeo? You should. It’s fan-damn-tastic. OK. Incredible.


RECENT BIRTHDAYS: Rock singer-guitarist Graham Nash is 76. Country singer Howard Bellamy is 72. TV Chef Ina Garten is 70. Model Christie Brinkley is 64. Rapper T-Mo is 46. Singer guitarist Dave Davies is 71. The Kinks. Actress Morgan Fairchild is 68. Actor Nathan Lane is 62. The Birdcage and MouseHunt. Two of my favorites. Actress Katharine Ross is 78. Butch Cassidy and the Sundance Kid, The Stepford Wives. Vanessa Redgrave is 81.

Actor Tom Selleck is 73. Magnum, P.I. Actress Ann Jillian is 68. It’s a Living. Rock Musician Louie Perez is 65. Los Lobos. La Bamba. Talk show host Oprah Winfrey is 64. Olympic gold-medal diver Greg Louganis is 58. He has been called both “the greatest American diver” and “probably the greatest diver in history.” Actor Gene Hackman is 88. Good grief. I can’t believe this. Oscar for Best Actor in The French Connection. Unforgiven. 79 films. It is said that he is retired but still in charge. I believe it.

Drummer, singer-songwriter, record producer and actor Phil Collins, is 67. Genesis. In the Air Tonight.  Actress Carol Channing is 97. She’s so cute. Composer Philip Glass is 81. I can listen to his music all day long. Google Philip Glass – Metamorphosis.  Actress Jessica Walter is 77. Play Misty for Me. Remember Clint Eastwood as a disc jockey and she was the obsessed fan. I had forgotten. Dang. I love this job.  Baseball Hall of Fame Nolan Ryan is 71. Rock singer Johnny Rotten is 62. Sex Pistols. Actress Minnie Driver is 48. Good Will Hunting.

Comedian Tommy Smothers is 81. I just watched the 20-year reunion show 1988-monologue. I do encourage you to Google it. Funny, I called my son and told him to watch it. It was interesting to look back at why CBS kicked them off the air. They were clean cut, ‘boys next door’ so censorship was not expected. They asked for and were given creative control in 1967. They were up against Bonanza on Sunday evening, where nine other shows had been canned because they didn’t have the ratings to compete with Bonanza.


The city of Friendswood is allowing homeowners that flooded last year along Clear Creek to rebuild at ground level, even though they will be subject to severe flooding in storms much less powerful than Harvey. City officials are using a 20-year-old flood insurance map that underestimates the risk of future floods for thousands of homes in order for approximately 300 homeowners to make repairs without going to the expense of elevating their homes. Friendswood had over 2,400 homes that had from 6” to 48” plus inches of water last year.


Keurig Green Mountain has plans to purchase Dr. Pepper Snapple for nearly $19-+—————–billion. *4an’t some things just stay the same. Several years ago, when Snapple bought out Dr. Pepper and shut down the Dublin, Texas plant, I said I wasn’t ever going to drink Dr. Pepper again. I was depressed. OK, I have cheated a few times but not often. I’m a Waco girl. I still have a couple of bottles of Dublin DP in my file cabinet. I’ll break one out when my daughter graduates from high school.


In the past, I have used this column to complain about a few things, but I’m going to repeat one complaints now because it’s meaningful…why don’t they make women’s clothing with pockets. Real pockets, not half pockets or stitched pockets where your phone falls into the toilet or on to the floor. Men would not put up with a 3” deep pocket. Yes, I got an Otter Box this time. It’s not pretty at all and I wish I had my beautiful tortoise shell back but l I can only lose my phone so many times before I must change my ways. Perhaps this will keep it dry.


Former New Jersey governor Chris Christie has signed to be an occasional contributor to ABC News. Hmmm.


Giant manta rays are being added to the threatened species list by the federal government. Last year, scientists were pleased to discover a large population of juvenile manta rays at the Flower Garden Banks National Marine Sanctuary, the protected coral reefs about 100 miles off the coast of Galveston.


A Houston chemical container company now faces environmental charges after using a hidden storm drain to dump benzene and other highly toxic, carcinogenic and flammable liquids into waterways near homes and schools that lead to Sims Bayou and then Galveston Bay. Employees were injured as the chemicals burned through their gloves, irritated their eyes then the company refused to pay for their medical care, so they tattle-taled on them. Gee, do you think this will be good for the manta rays.


Researchers at the Chinese Academy of Sciences in Shanghai have now used the same cloning technique that produced Dolly the sheep in 1996, to clone two healthy female monkeys named Zhong Zhong and Hua Hua. Since Dolly, they have produced dogs, cats, pigs, cows, ponies and many, many other animals but never a primate which they think will bring them closer to replicating humans. The belief is that this will help in the research of Alzheimer’s and Parkinson’s.


The flu season is in its third month and its no better. Continue practicing flu prevention. Wash your hands, don’t put your fingers in your mouth, eyes or nose, and stay home if you can. Flu death in Texas is 2,897 on January 27th.  The Brazoria County Health Department said the flu season started October 1 and as of January 19th, had recorded 1,946 cases. The way I understand it is, there is Flu A and Flu B. If you had one of those, you can still get the other. We have at least another month to go before it slows down.


J.J. Watt won the NFL’s Walter Payton Man of the Year Award for raising more than $37-million in 19 days for Harvey relief fund. He, of course, said, “It’s about so much more than just one man, it’s about a whole city.” He’s so cute and humble. The Man of The Year honors a player each year because of their charitable contributions off the field and excellence on the field. The only other Houston winner has been Warren Moon.


It’s time to prune the crepe myrtles. For those that do it correctly, it’s called pruning. For those that go to cutting and sawing with no knowledge of how to do it properly, it’s called “crepe myrder.” Please avoid the mutilation and read some instructions first. Your trees will be prettier for it and we won’t talk about you behind your back.


Kimberly-Clark, maker of Huggies, Kotex, Scott toilet tissue, Viva and other consumer products says that declining fertility rates in the US have contributed to a decline in diaper sales. The company now plans to dismiss around 5,000 people and sell or close about 10 manufacturing facilities. Amazon.com has launched its own private label brand of diapers.


My son comes home from college often to work at The Clarion but one week-end he came home, just because. He arrived after I was in bed and wanted to talk. A lot. I kept falling asleep as he spoke. He would say, “Mom, are you listening? what did I just say?” and I would repeat small, very tiny words that I pulled from the fog of my non-working brain. This went on forever. It was a lot like Chinese water torture except for people that love each other. Gage, I will do better next time. Love, Mom


Thanks for reading this.


– Lisa

What I Heard This Week! Feb. 1, 2018

What I Heard This Week February 1, 2018

What I Heard This Week by Lisa Baker

A mom turned her 14-year-old son over to police after he and his two friends carjacked an 81-year-old woman at gunpoint outside a Walmart in Florida. Surveillance video captured the three youths and then…his mom saw the video of the carjacking on the news. What a woman. I nominate her for Mom of the Year for the guts and the unbelievable love that it took to turn him in.  He will benefit for the rest of his life. When my kids were that age, I believed in the “pinching of the earlobe between two fingernails,” when discipline was needed, especially when they had embarrassed me in public. It leaves no real evidence other than pink earlobes, but it gets immediate attention. I picture that poor mom with an earlobe in hand, marching her son into the police station.


The Houston Boat Show saw an 18% increase in attendees over last year as 81,000 people shopped earlier this month, looking to replace vessels damaged by Hurricane Harvey.


United Airlines turned down one traveler’s request to bring her ‘emotional support peacock’ on a flight even though the woman said that she had purchased a second ticket for the peacock. The airlines had explained to the customer on three separate occasions that the animal did not meet guidelines including its weight and size. What about the poop?


The head of Hawaii’s Emergency Management Agency has resigned and the employee who issued a ballistic missile alert to residents causing mass panic for 38 minutes earlier this month, has been terminated. As it turns out, the employee who had worked at the agency for 10 years, intentionally sent the message because he really thought the island was being attacked, but the worker had made similar mistakes twice before.


A Houston woman posted an ad in her husband’s girlfriend’s name on Craigslist ‘seeking sex from married men.’ The ad included the girlfriend’s name, age and a personal photo. Investigators traced the ad to a computer at the scorned woman’s workplace. Hmmm. In discussion with my peers, many believed that she deserves a standing ovation for creativity and sheer guts.


Mistakes are proof that you are trying.


The appraisal district took ALL my money this morning, so as I left the substation in Clute, I decided to treat myself at Dairy Bar with one of their delicious cheeseburgers. A smiling Robert (who took my order) asked if I wanted large fries and a drink with my order. I told him that I really DID want large fries, large onion rings, large milkshake and a sherbet but I would settle for just small fries and no drink. He must have seen the desperation in my eyes knowing that I had just signed over my firstborn at the tax office. He walked away from me for just a moment then turned around holding a small dish of coconut sherbet and a spoon, saying, “Here, try it.” It was so delicious – it tasted just like vacation. The next time you’re on Plantation Drive, be sure to stop and have a dish of Robert’s special sherbet. Tell him that Lisa sent you.


Hope you saw the once in a “Blue Moon” on the 31st.  Actually, it was a Super Blue Blood Moon. Even though it’s called a blue moon, the moon appears red because it is the only color on the spectrum that will make it through the Earth’s atmosphere, giving the moon a reddish glow. It won’t come again until 2037.


Helen McIntire is retiring from our office. She has been here from day one, 19 years ago. We will all miss our co-worker and our friend. If you ever need anyone to pray for you, Helen is the girl. The office won’t be the same without her. Come by on Thursday afternoon and help us wish her the best.


RECENT BIRTHDAYS:  Actor Richard Dean Anderson is 68. MacGyver. Dr. Jeff Webber in General Hospital. Rock singer Robin Zander is 65. Cheap Trick. Princess Caroline of Monaco is 61. Actress Mariska Hargitay is 54.  Actor Jerry Maren is 99. He is the last known surviving Munchkin from The Wizard of Oz. Cajun musician Doug Kershaw is 82. Louisiana Man. Olympic gold-medal gymnast Mary Lou Retton is 50.  Cartoonist Jules Feiffer is 89. He is considered the most widely read satirist in the country. Actor Scott Glenn is 79. Urban Cowboy, The Right Stuff, The Hunt for Red October.

Musician Lucinda Williams is 65. Passionate Kisses. Rock singer-musician Eddie van Halen is 63. Talk-show host Ellen DeGeneres is 60. Celebrity Chef Graham Kerr is 84. The Galloping Gourmet. Singer Steve Perry is 69. Journey. Actress Linda Blair is 59. Regan in The Exorcist. Celebrity Chef Guy Fieri is 50. Actor James Cromwell is 78. The Green Mile, Space Cowboys, The Queen. Ballet Mikhail Baryshnikov is 70. Actor Alan Cumming is 53. Most recently the master of ceremonies in Cabaret on Broadway. Country singer Tracy Lawrence is 50. Sticks and Stones.

Candice Bergen, 71, will star again as the popular Murphy Brown in the CBS 2018-2019 season. The original show earned 18 trophies and tackled current political and cultural issues. Murphy Brown, a single, very successful business person, became pregnant and decided to raise her baby without the father, calling it a lifestyle choice. This prompted then VP Dan Quayle to voice his opinion about “the breakdown of family values.” She responded that families come in all shapes and sizes and that’s what really defines a family is caring and love. Yep, she was a rebel in 1988. Shoulder pads and all.


Elton John announced the ‘Farewell’ Yellow Brick Road tour will include Toyota Center Dec. 8th & 9th.


Madonna. Madonna. Madonna. Someone must not be getting all the attention that she needs at age 58. Recently, she posted an Instagram picture posing topless with a $4,000 Louis Vuitton handbag printed with the Mona Lisa and a caption that read, “Still drooling over a handbag…”. Hmmm. And what’s with the gold and diamond things on her teeth they call Grillz. Is that age appropriate or considered even the least little bit fashionable?


Taco Bell is now serving fries. They can be topped with beef, pico de Gallo, nacho cheese, sour cream, guacamole, bacon or jalapeno peppers. Dang.


The National Hurricane Center’s official report on Hurricane Harvey has been released, five months after what we hope was the only ‘once in a lifetime event’ that will rock our world. Fingers crossed. The report confirms and exceeds what we knew already. Rainfall amounts were likely even more extreme in places with levels so high that flood gauges could not capture them. The hurricane center estimates damage at between $90 to $160 billion. The storm killed at least 68 people but attributed another 35 deaths to indirect causes. “The most significant tropical cyclone rainfall event in US history.”


The Spoetzl Brewery, in Shiner, Texas, which has produced Shiner beers for more than a century, (for those of you that are math-challenged, that’s more than 100-years), announced that they will have a $1.2 million, 30-second commercial, that will air statewide during this year’s Super Bowl. I love Shiner Black Bohemian Lager. Then my second favorite is Shiner Bock. But there are 12 other selections that might do something nice for your taste buds…IPA, Holiday Cheer, Ruby Redbird, Strawberry Blond…it’s a long list. You can try them out this Sunday during The Super Bowl LII. May Justin Timberlake have no controversial costume problems this time around.

Remember, most people aren’t really all that they ‘post’ to be.


– Lisa

What I Heard This Week! Jan. 25, 2018

What I Heard This Week January 25, 2018

What I Heard This Week by Lisa Baker

Many things are changing in Saudi Arabia. The country is getting its first movie theatres. Soon women will be allowed to drive and now 12 camels have been disqualified from this year’s “Camel Beauty Contest” because their handlers used Botox to make them more handsome for the judging. Or should this be pretty? I just couldn’t tell from the pictures. This is a perfect example of men objectifying camels again. So many questions. What about the talent competition?  Where do you inject the Botox? The face?  The hump? Must be tough to be a ‘hot’ camel these days. Especially if you are retaining water.


People are eating Tide Pods. Yes, laundry detergent wrapped in a soft, squishy dissolvable covering. It’s a viral fad called Tide Pod Challenge. Remember the Ice Bucket Challenge? Same thing, except this is for people with less brain cells. You bite down on a pod, making sure of course, that you video yourself or get one of your stupid friends to video it for you, then you’ll need to call poison control before you post your video and see how many ‘likes’ you have. Poison Control Hotline is 1-800-222-1222. So far, in the first 15 days of this year, there were 39 reported cases of teens poisoned by the capsules. That’s seizures, respiratory arrest and even death.


Shakespeare’s scripts contained over 2200 never-before-seen words. He liked to invent words, turn nouns to verbs and use cleverly applied prefixes. Many of these words have become some of our everyday language. The top ten words I found…Addiction, Arch-villain, Assassination, Bedazzled, Belongings, Cold-blooded, Dishearten, Eventful, Eyeball, and Fashionable. If you’re bored at this point, don’t read the next ten. Half-blooded or Hot-blooded, Inaudible, Ladybird, Manager, Multitudinous (means numerous), New-fangled, Pageantry, Scuffle, Swagger, and Uncomfortable. Interesting.


When GasBuddy surveyed their customers on ratings and reviews for “who has the best gas station,” guess who won? Best Coffee? Cleanest? Customer Service?  Outdoor Lighting? BEST Restrooms? and Overall, the BEST? Do you need a hint? Well, the mascot is a beaver. Congratulations, Buc-ee’s. We didn’t need a stinking survey to tell us what we already knew.


Don’t settle: Don’t finish bad books. If you don’t like the menu, leave the restaurant. If you’re not on the right path, get off it. – Chris Brogan


Researchers have developed a non-invasive blood test that can detect signs of eight types of cancer long before any symptoms of the disease emerge. Cancer of the ovary, liver, stomach, pancreas, esophagus, colon, lung and breast can be screened all at once. Great news because ovarian, liver, stomach, pancreatic and esophageal currently have no screening tests. The research was said to have been like looking for a needle in a haystack.


Newest Kardashian and Kanye West baby is named Chicago West. She will be called Chi which is pronounced SHY. She joins Saint and North. My momma always said, “Lisa, if you can’t say something nice, don’t say anything at all.”


As I sat down for a recent meeting, we were notified that we had an absent board member who needed to attend his own company meeting for SwampButt Underwear. His website says Science Sweat Stink Stank and SwampButt Underwear where there are two styles and both fit snuggly with no droop. That’s what it says. Personally, I hate droopy underwear. I’m ordering a pair for my son and I’ve now done my part for local business by telling you. Pay it forward. Small businesses need your help. swampbutt.com


Elton John emotionally announced that he will retire from performing after a lengthy Farewell Yellow Brick Road tour of 300 shows over a three-year period. Rocket Man is almost 71.


RECENT BIRTHDAYS: Actor Hector Elizondo is 81. Former AC News anchor Diane Sawyer is 72. Golfer Jane Stephenson is 66. Actor Ralph Fiennes is 55. Actress Betty White is 96. Actor James Earl Jones is 87. The voice of Darth Vader. Talk-show host Mary Povich is 79. Actor-comedian Steve Harvey is 61. Singer Susanna Hoffs is 59. The Bangles. Actor-comedian Jim Carrey is 56. World Golf Hall of Fame Jack Nicklaus is 78. Opera singer conductor Placido Domingo is 77.

Singer Mac Davis is 76. He wrote for Elvis, “Memories, In the Ghetto, Don’t Cry Daddy, A Little Less Conversation” then in the 70s he did “Baby, Don’t Get Hooked on Me, I Believe in Music” and starred in North Dallas Forty with Nick Nolte. I always thought he was very attractive.

Basketball Hall of Fame Hakeem Olajuwon is 55. Actress Tippi Hedren is 88. The Birds. Marnie. Actress Shelley Fabares is 74. The Donna Reed Show. Former ABC newswoman Anne Compton is 71. TV chef Paula Deen is 71. Butter. Actor Desi Arnaz Jr. is 65. Yikes, Little Ricky. Dino, Desi and Billy. Actress Katey Sagal is 64. Dancer singer Chita Rivera is 84. I saw her recently singing and dancing with Tommy Tune in Galveston. You would never believe that she was almost 84.

Actress Jill Eikenberry is 71. Singer-songwriter Billy Ocean is 68. Actor-director Robby Benson is 62. Actress Geena Davis is 62. Rapper Kid Rock is 47. He just donated $122,000 from sales of merchandise promoting his potential US Senate campaign to a voter-registration organization. I guess he isn’t really running for the US Senate after all.


After 50 years on the road, 77-year-old Neil Diamond has announced that he will retire from touring after having been diagnosed with Parkinson’s. He will receive the Lifetime Achievement Award by the Recording Academy at the Grammy Awards this Sunday. I may have said this before but when I saw him in concert in Houston in the 90’s, I was amazed at the audience participation when he started singing “Sweet Caroline.” Everyone sang and danced in their seats in unison, all while waving their arms. It reminded me of the Wiggles concert that we had taken the kids to a few weeks before. Happy memories.


Twenty-five years ago, Fort Bend County’s assistant engineer had a meeting with US Army Corps of Engineer and was told that the footprint for Barker Reservoir was bigger than the land owned by the government, therefore the reservoir, while dry most of the time, could fill during a major rainstorm. He warned the county judge, county commissioners, the FB County Drainage District and the county emergency management coordinator. The land in the reservoir was sinking, therefore the houses being built were at a level lower than the water level the dams were designed to hold.  They ignored him, attacked him for writing the memo, and questioned his credentials. Around 9,000 structures were damaged during Hurricane Harvey in this area. Hmmm. He kept a copy of the memo.


“I cannot help but express the pain and shame…over the irreparable harm caused to children by church ministers. It is fair to ask for forgiveness.” Pope Francis, in an apology for sexual abuse by Catholic priests.


Ladies at Gloria Dei Lutheran Church in Nassau Bay take recycled plastic grocery sacks, cut them up and make ‘plarn’ which is then used to crochet sleeping mats for those that need a soft place to sleep or sit, like the homeless. They look great and I heard that there are instructions on Pinterest.


I’ve reached that age where my brain went from “you probably shouldn’t say that” to “what the hell, let’s see what happens.”


Remember all the problems that American Airlines has had with their new uniforms. Thousands of complaints from flight attendants and crew members about hives, wheezing, vertigo, headaches and other health problems. The supplier, Twin Hill, remains confident of the quality and integrity of their product and will continue to supply uniforms until its contract ends in 2020, but after that, Lands’ End will have enough uniforms ready for all 51,000 employees minus the pilots, who are still looking for a new supplier. In the meantime, airline employees can choose to wear an approved alternative.


Guinness World Records, the world’s authority on record-breaking achievements, honored Dolly Parton as the artist with the most hits on Billboard’s Hot Country Songs chart by a female and the most decades with a Top 20 Hit on that same chart. Dolly Parton turned 72 last week.


Almost 160 victims and Olympians that former doctor Larry Nassar abused under the guise of medical treatment, have now confronted him before the court. Kyle Stephens said, “Perhaps you have figured it out by now, but little girls don’t stay little forever. They grow into strong women that return to destroy your world…I have been coming for you for a long time.”  The former sports doctor pleaded guilty to molesting girls at his Michigan State University office, his home and at a Lansing-area gymnastic club, sometimes with a parent present. Why didn’t someone have the courage and character to come forward before now. Prison will not be good to him…inmates don’t like child predators. Good. As this paper goes to printer, he was sentenced to 40 to 175 years in prison. The judge said, “You’ve done nothing to deserve to walk outside a prison again.”


Don’t forget the Houston Auto Show this weekend. One NRG Park. January 24-28.+


Food Thoughts: Red Lobster turns 50 and changes are coming. You can order online and there’s delivery. ‘Loaded Seaside Fries’ topped with cheese, fried clams and a ladle of hot clam chowder on top, Yucatan Shrimp, Petite Red Lobster Rolls and Shrimp Pot Stickers are just a few of the additions to the new menu. Kitchens are being redone, and Beyoncé is getting credit for increased sales from younger eaters when she used ‘Red Lobster’ twice in her 2016 song, “Formation.” Repeat after me…cheese biscuits.


McDonald’s is testing the use of fresh beef in new burger called ArchBurger. They have made several changes to their menu recently to appeal to those concerned with the ingredients in their food. No artificial preservatives in Chicken McNuggets and apple juice in the Happy Meal has less sugar. Isn’t that the way it should have been all along. Burger King introduced Double Quarter Pound King, its own version of McDonald’s quarter-pounder. McDonald’s & Burger King did not immediately return our calls seeking comment. Wink, wink. All this food talk, I’m starving.


The whole world has a packaging problem and it’s our job to encourage and help companies reduce packaging waste. Think about how much trash YOU have each week. Plastic never breaks down but ends up as very tiny particles that are eaten by animals and invades our food sources. Coca-Cola announced it wants to recycle a bottle or can for every beverage it sells by 2030 and reduce the amount of plastic it uses in bottles. McDonald’s plan to use all recycled or other environmentally friendly materials for its soda cups, Happy Meal boxes and other packaging by 2025 and they plan for all their 37,000 restaurants worldwide to recycle customer waste by that same year. This is good.


The flu season is not getting better, it’s getting worse. Hawaii is the only state that doesn’t have wide-spread illnesses. Now they are saying that you can SPREAD the flu virus just by breathing, which means that you can GET the flu the same way, just by breathing. Hold your breath.


Remember, your vibe attracts your tribe.


– Lisa

What I Heard This Week! Jan. 18, 2018

What I Heard This Week January 18, 2018

What I Heard This Week by Lisa BakerFewer than 3 percent of cars sold today in the US have stick shifts and clutch pedals. You can’t even get a stick shift in a Volkswagen Beetle. I had a 1975 chocolate brown Toyota Celica that I couldn’t quite get into reverse, so the first day I had the car, the boy that carried out my groceries had to do that for me. (That tells you how long ago it was, because no one has carried out our groceries in forever.) After that, I always pulled through to the second parking place, so I could go forward. It took me about a week to master shifting and reverse, then it was THE MOST fun car to drive. It was a 5-speed and I rolled through those gears. I’m making wistful sounds right now.


American Girl Dolls is introducing Luciana, an 18-inch doll, a creative, confident 11-year-old girl and aspiring astronaut who dreams of being the first person to go to Mars. She has skills and brains, is a good leader and team player, has STEM-inspired outfits and accessories including a flight suit, space suit and a Mars Habitat loaded with science and research tools. To insure the doll’s authenticity, they worked with female experts from NASA. Barbie. I miss playing with you in your wedding dress and putting together carboard furniture to go in your Dream House where you could live happily after with Ken. My, how times have changed.


A Louisiana teacher was ejected from a meeting room by a marshall, handcuffed on the floor and put into a patrol car when she stood up at a school board meeting and asked why the superintendent was getting a raise while educators and support staff hadn’t received a raise in 10 years. This teacher had won a teacher of the year award in 2016 and is said to be a really, good teacher and nice person. It’s all on video so there are facts. I watched it all and she should not have been arrested. Maybe there was more to the story.


A New Jersey couple were renovating their new $2-million condo, only to find that the inside of the walls, the insulation and the ceiling had been stuffed full of water bottles filled with urine. There were also containers of partially eaten Chinese food, cupcake wrappers, construction debris, and the insulation in the master bedroom was soaked in urine. The couple tried to sell the condo back to the construction company but are now suing the company. Ugh.


You saw the picture of the little boy in the hoodie that had “Coolest Monkey in the Jungle” written across the front. The ad prompted some celebrities to end their partnerships with the H&M clothing line. Well, this little boy’s mom doesn’t have a problem with it and says, “(I) am the mum and this is one of hundreds of outfits my son has modeled. Stop crying wolf all the time, unnecessary issue here…get over it.” “Everyone is entitled to their opinion about this…I really don’t understand but not coz (I) am choosing not to but because it’s not my way of thinking, sorry.” OUCH. At my house, if momma is happy then everybody is happy.


Part of my children’s Christmas gift (memories instead of stuff) involved tickets to see Neil deGrasse Tyson, astrophysicist, director of the Hayden Planetarium, author and science rock star. He and his enthusiasm strips down complex ideas, make jokes and suddenly you understand what a black hole is. All this is done while he is walking around on stage in his socks. He recently released “Astrophysics for People in a Hurry” and it immediately went to No. 1 on the New York Times’ nonfiction best seller list. He’s a good Google.


Neil deGrasse Tyson – “Kids should be allowed to break stuff more often. That’s a consequence of exploration. Exploration is what you do when you don’t know what you’re doing.”


RECENT BIRTHDAYS: Country singer Naomi Judd is 72. Singer Rod Stewart is 73. Boxing Hall of Fame and entrepreneur George Foreman is 69.  Singer Robert Earl Keen is 62. Singer Mary J. Blige is 47. Texas-born, Mexican-American rock musician Alejandro Escovedo is 67. Singer Pat Benatar is 65. Hall of Fame race car driver Bobby Rahal is 65. Folk singer Joan Baez is 77.  Rockabilly singer Roy Head is 77. Treat Her Right.

Comedian Larry Storch is 95. Ahh. Remember him on F Troop. CBS newsman Charles Osgood is 85. Singer Shirley Bassey is 81. She recorded the theme songs to Goldfinger, Diamonds Are Forever, and Moonraker for the James Bond movies. Game show host Bob Eubanks is 80. Actress Yvette Mimieux is 76. Musician Robby Krieger is 72. The Doors.

Musician Stephen Stills is 73. Actress Victoria Principal is 68. Actor-Director Mel Gibson is 62. NFL quarterback Eli Manning is 37. The Amazing Kreskin is 83. He predicted that Trump would be elected 11 months before it happened. Actress Kirstie Alley is 67. Country singer Ricky Van Shelton is 66. Radio-TV personality Howard Stern is 64. Entrepreneur Jeff Bezos is 54. Amazon.com.

Rock singer Jimmy Page is 74. Led Zeppelin. Rock singer-musician Dave Matthews is 51. Singer Crystal Gayle is 67. Don’t it Make My Brown Eyes Blue. Floor length hair. Voted one of the 50 Most Beautiful People in the World by People magazine in 1983. Baby sister of 84-year-old Loretta Lynn (who btw fell and broke her hip last week.)

Physicist Stephen Hawking is 76. A good quote of his (and he has some really great ones) is, “I believe alien life is quite common in the universe, although intelligent life is less so. Some say it has yet to appear on planet Earth.” Hmmm.


Ray Thomas, Moody Blues founding member and flautist, died at age 76. Thomas stepped back from the band due to ill health in 1999 and in 2014 confirmed that he had been diagnosed with inoperable but treatable prostate cancer. Nights in White Satin. The Moody Blues are to be inducted into the Rock & Roll Hall of Fame in April.


President Oprah? Fact or Fiction or just Fantasy?


Stephen Hawking – “My advice to other disabled people would be, concentrate on things your disability doesn’t prevent you doing well, and don’t regret the things it interferes with. Don’t be disabled in spirit as well as physically.” That’s good advice whether you are disabled or not.


Houston Auto Show, January 24-28, at NRG Center and presented by The Houston Chronicle.


In Southern California at a private residence, authorities found 13 siblings, ages 2 to 29 years old, all malnourished, in filthy conditions and some chained to furniture, after one of the children, a 17-year-old, jumped out a window, called 911 and led police to the home. The child that escaped was so small that police thought she was 10-years-old. The mother and father are being held on $9-million bail.


Mahatma Gandhi – “I will not let anyone walk through my mind with their dirty feet.”


The LJ Civic Center Ballroom will be the location of the annual Daddy-Daughter Dance this year. February 9th and it always sells out so get your tickets soon. Tickets are not sold at the door.


Actually, this was a really boring week. I struggled to find something interesting to tell you. I will do better next week.


Dr. Seuss – “Be who you are and say what you feel, because those who mind don’t matter and those who matter don’t mind.”

 


– Lisa

What I Heard This Week! Jan. 11, 2018

What I Heard This Week January 11, 2018

What I Heard This Week by Lisa BakerDoctors believed that surgery was needed for a 41-year old woman that had not responded to six years of standard treatment for Crohn’s, which is a very serious bowel disease. Surgery finally found the problem, two small foreign objects that had pierced and inflamed the woman’s intestine. Both pieces of plastic had the word ‘Heinz’ written on them. The woman said she had no memory of eating ketchup packages and is relieved that she no longer has any symptoms of Crohn’s.


The Dow Jones industrial average hit 25,000 for the first time, just 23-days after it hit 24,000 – the fastest 1,000-point gain in the Dow’s 122-year history. It was just one year ago that it hit 20,000. Did you get that???


Country singer Mickey Gilley is recovering after the car that his son was driving collided with another vehicle and rolled 3 times. They were on their way to Branson where Gilley owns a theatre where he regularly performs but says he will be back on stage as scheduled in just a few days. His cousins are Jerry Lee Lewis and Jimmy Swaggart. The famous club in Pasadena, gained fame in the 80’s with Urban Cowboy and was billed as the “World’s Biggest Honky Tonk.”


San Francisco was hit by magnitude 4.4 earthquake last week. Fires, earthquakes and now landslides. The rain turned the scorched landscape into mud and then flash flooding.


Bradley Cooper makes his directorial debut and stars in a remake of the classic, “A Star is Born,” along with Lady Gaga. It was first done in 1937 with Janet Gaynor as the aspiring Hollywood actress and Fredric March as the fading movie star who helps launch her career. Then in 1954, Judy Garland and James Mason starred in a very well received production. In 1976, Barbara Streisand and Kris Kristofferson starred in the third remake. I loved this one, but Rotten Tomatoes only gives it a 31%. But then again, I love Kris Kristofferson and Barbara Streisand. This fourth remake will be released in May 2018.


Pho Saigon Vietnamese Noodle House is opening a new restaurant in Pearland in the Kirby Commons shopping center. My kids and I discovered their original Midtown location years ago on a wet, cold, rainy afternoon stuck away in a shopping center that we didn’t really like the looks of, but we went in anyway. We continue to drop in because their Pho is outstanding.


The 2018 RodeoHouston lineup includes Garth Brooks (opening), Little Big Town, Blake Shelton, Leon Bridges, Kelsea Ballerini, Alessia Cara, Rascal Flatts, Jason Aldean, Thomas Rhett, Luke Bryan, Chris Young, Cody Johnson, Calibre 50, Zac Brown Band, J Balvin, OneRepublic, Keith Urban, Chris Stapleton, Brad Paisley and Garth Brooks (closing.) I’m in for Leon Bridges.


I’m so hot. I’m so cold. Just months ago, inmates of Texas prisons complained that the heat-sensitive needed AC. Some of them got it. Now there are multiple complaints of unheated and under-heated units at around two-dozen prisons. Officials say that all heating units are working. It’s a Goldilocks world.


Researchers at University of Colorado say that injecting wastewater from oil and gas production back underground causes enough increase in underground pressure to make rock formations slip along fault lines, therefore creating human-caused quakes along the Colorado-New Mexico border.


Barnes & Noble sales had a bad sales quarter because they say that in the same quarter (2016) a year ago, “Harry Potter and The Cursed Child” was released and there wasn’t a similar hot seller released in the same quarter of 2017. Buy and read a book.


RECENT BIRTHDAYS: Country singer Patty Loveless is 61. Rock singer Michael Stipe is 58. R.E.M. TV host Jack Hanna is 71. Remember Johnny Carson episodes with animals?  Actor Cuba Gooding Jr. is 50. Model Christy Turlington is 49. Actor Taye Diggs is 47. Former Vice President Walter F. Mondale is 90. Actor Robert Duvall is 87. Actress Diane Keaton is 72. Rocker singer Marilyn Manson is 49. Rock singer-musician Country Joe McDonald is 76. Woodstock. Country Joe and the Fish. Yikes, that’s a long time ago. Rapper GrandMaster Flash is 60. I love it when rappers turn 60. Rock musician Andy Summers is 75. The Police.

Actor Sir Ben Kingsley is 74. Fashion designer Diane von Furstenberg is 71. Actress Bebe Neuwirth is 59. Dr. Lilith Sternin who married Dr. Frasier Crane in Cheers. Actor Val Kilmer is 58. Author Nicholas Sparks is 52. Olympic gold-medal gymnast Gabby Douglas is 22. Singer Kenny Loggins is 70. Nitty Gritty Dirt Bank, Loggins and Messina, Blue Sky Riders. Actor David Caruso is 62. Talk-show host-reporter Katie Couric is 61. Actor Nicholas Cage is 54.


Actress Rose Marie, best know for her role as a wisecracking comedy writer on The Dick Van Dyke Show died at age 94. She believed that female comedians today think that being funny means you use four-letter words for shock value and that’s just not funny.

Sue Grafton, bestselling author of her alphabet detective mysteries, died at the age of 77. She started with “A Is for Alibi,” in 1982 and continued through “Y is for Yesterday,” released August 2017. Her last book, “Z is for Zero,” was set for release in the fall of 2019, but her husband says that she hadn’t started writing it because of her chemotherapy treatments, so it seems that it’s a 25-letter alphabet and Investigator Kinsey Millhone has retired. Grafton was always adamant that her books would never be turned into movies or TV shows. I’ve read them all. She will be missed.

Astronaut John Young, the first man to make six trips to space and to walk on the moon, died at age 87.

Jerry Van Dyke, comic actor and younger brother of Dick Van Dyke, died at the age of 86.


The Starplex Cinemas in Brazos Mall in Lake Jackson had 20 to 30 gallons of water dumped into the theatre after the sprinkler system was activated. First responders and fire fighters from LJ and Clute determined that there was no fire and after viewing surveillance cameras it was determined that a young man had thrown something at the fire sprinklers on the ceiling. I heard it was a coin. When I discussed this with my son, I stated that I would have “torn him up” if he had ever done anything like that. His reply was, “It would have been hard for me to do that because you would never let us go to the mall by ourselves because you said the mall is not a babysitter.” Hmmm. They weren’t happy with me when I told them ‘no’ but they both agree now that the mall is not the place to be dropped off with no supervision. They listened.


American Cancer Society says that studies have shown that taller people have a greater risk of cancer. Shhh.


John Williams has composed music for more than 100 films including all seven Star Wars, Superman, Home Alone,, The Book Thief, Schlindler’s List, E.T., Jaws, Jurassic Park, Close Encounters of the Third Kind, Indiana Jones, the first three Harry Potter films and tons more. Part of my children’s Christmas gift this year (working on the idea of creating memories instead of buying stuff) were Houston Symphony tickets to see Harry Potter and the Chamber of Secrets film with live orchestra and a choir.  It was three hours of pure pleasure. The Butterbeer wasn’t spectacular but it was still cold Butterbeer.


For those of you that haven’t read Harry Potter, Butterbeer was a popular wizarding beverage described as tasting “a little like less-sickly butterscotch.” It was served at numerous locations in the wizarding world and had a very slight alcoholic content. Students of Hogwarts School of Witchcraft and Wizardry would often buy it when visiting Hogsmeade. I found a recipe online that has sweetened condensed milk, butterscotch topping, whipped butter, and vanilla cream soda. I don’t feel the need to try, but you might want to.


The good thing about science is that it’s true, whether or not you believe in it. Neil deGrasse Tyson


The official name is Eclectic Menagerie Park and I know that you have seen it off to the left as you race towards Houston on 288. The Rubenstein Family and Texas Pipe and Supply has created a very untraditional park with huge handmade metal sculptures. Let’s face it. Welders are artists. There is the armadillo, dinosaur, gorilla, the little red truck caught on a fishing pole, eagle, three art cows, roadrunner, planes, and more. It’s a great place to take pictures. 288 and Belfort.


New Year’s is a harmless annual institution, of no particular use to anybody save as a scapegoat for promiscuous drunks, and friendly calls and humbug resolutions.” Mark Twain


The 86-acre Bayou Wildlife Zoo in Galveston Co. has been owned and operated by Clint Wolston since 1985. He’s loved and raised a white rhino named Pee Wee, zebras, a zonkey (there was some hanky-panky between the donkey and a zebra but I’m not naming names), kangaroos, ring-tailed lemurs, ostriches, emus, giraffes, camels and currently, 500 other animals. The place is for sale because Mr. Wolston is almost 81-years-old and wants to relax with his wife. The park had 90,000 visitors last year and includes two miles of trails, 15 lakes and ponds, native trees and 3,500 feet of waterfront on Dickinson Bayou. Years ago, I remember visiting with my kids and riding the tram through the grounds with the animals practically sitting on our laps. Mr. Walston just wants someone qualified to continue the magic for the next generation. Oh, and $6-million allows you this little bit of heaven.


Momma Mia II, the sequel, Here We Go Again, is due to release July 20th, 2018 and rumor is that Cher has a part.


DeeDee Bridgewater is an American jazz singer. She is a three-time Grammy Award-winning singer-songwriter, as well as a Tony Award-winning stage actress. For 23 years, she was the host of National Public Radio’s syndicated radio show JazzSet with DeeDee Bridgewater. She sang with Ray Charles and she is now coming to The Clarion on January 20th. Don’t say that I didn’t let you know in time to get your tickets. Box Office 979-230-3156.


I thought I saw a spider, but it was just a piece of yarn. It’s dead yarn now.


Hoda Kotb – “I think the whole money thing for me, I’ve always been sort of – I know it sounds ridiculous that I’m going to say this, but I really have done jobs I liked for the job I liked because I never wanted to be happy every other Friday on pay day,” Kotb said. “Like, I didn’t want that to be the happy day. I wanted to feel good throughout. So, no, I’m not making Matt Lauer money. Not even close.” Meanwhile “Today” has thrived in the ratings since pervy Matt Lauer was dismissed for sexual misconduct. There are some thoughts that perhaps a lot of viewers could see his true colors.


If you stumble, make it part of the dance. Lisa

 


– Lisa

What I Heard This Week! Jan. 4, 2018

What I Heard This Week January 4, 2018

What I Heard This Week by Lisa BakerThey ordered their pizza 5 minutes before the New Year and when it arrived they firmly stated, “Wait, we ordered this pizza a year ago.” 😊


Reliable, smart, compassionate Hoda Kobt has officially replaced Matt Lauer on “Today” and the former (fired) newsman sent her a congratulations text. Whoopee. I don’t know why it would make the news. That was nice, but I don’t think that too many people really cares what he thinks.


Magnolia Market owners, Joanna and Chip Gaines, are expecting their 5th child and we are told that it is the result of a romantic Johnny Swim concert last October. We all wish the Gaines lived next door.


New Year’s Day now is the accepted time to make your regular annual good resolutions. Next week you can begin paving hell with them as usual.” Mark Twain


A couple were on their first date. He is a well-known Houston attorney. She is…hmm, a “well-known” date. He claims she was drunk, he called an Uber to pick her up, but she refused to leave. She did stick around and destroy $1-million worth of artwork which included several oil paintings (two Andy Warhol valued at $500,000 each) and two sculptures, then poured wine on three paintings and tore a Renoir and a Monet off the wall. Ouch. The young lady was released on $30,000 bond. That’s exactly why I stick with posters. They’re easier to replace when the drunks tear them off the walls.


In February, the first DNA genetic-based dating app, Pheramor, will be launched. It will combine genetic information with data from social media posts to create user profiles. The Houston-based mobile dating app will use cheek swabs to analyze users’ pheromones, which research suggests could predict who is attracted to whom. According to Wikipedia, a pheromone is a secreted or excreted chemical factor that triggers a social response in members of the same species …that affect behavior or physiology. The word was first proposed in 1959 with researchers reporting the identification of the first pheromone in silk moths.


Dating apps are big business these days. According to eHarmony.com, 53 percent of people lie on dating profiles. See above.


They have been best friends for 60 years…since sixth grade; diving, and playing first-string HS football together. In Hawaii, two men have just discovered that they have the same biological mother, so they are not only best friends, but brothers. Both are retired, plan to do some traveling together and said it was the best Christmas present ever. Thanks, Ancestry.com.


Learn to park with manners, I’m not a sardine.


In Moscow, a 65-year-old woman was blown off a 4th floor balcony in heavy winds, broke her arm and three ribs landing in a snowdrift, was then taken to the hospital in the bucket of a construction truck because the ambulance couldn’t reach her in the snow. I like to close my eyes sometimes and picture these stories I tell you. This one made me laugh.


In Rome, police arrested a topless protestor after she tried to remove the baby Jesus from the Vatican’s nativity scene…with the statue of the mother of Jesus looking on, in what I picture would be silent amazement. My eyes are closed on this one too. Oh, my.


RECENT BIRTHDAYS: Mouseketeer Tommy Cole is 76. He is an Emmy winning makeup artist as well as former actor. Musician Walter “Wolfman” Washington is 74. Singer Jimmy Buffett is 71. Country singer Barbara Mandrell is 69. Actress Sissy Spacek is 68. Carrie. Academy award for Best Actress for her portrayal of Loretta Lynn in Coal Miner’s Daughter. And she has been married to the same guy since 1974. Singer Annie Lennox is 63. Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau is 46. News correspondent Cokie Roberts is 74. Humorist David Sedrais is 61. Rock musician Lars Ulrich is 54. Metallica. Actor Jared Leto is 46. Actor Kit Harington is 31. Game of Thrones.

Actress Susan Lucci is 71. All My Children. Rock singer Eddie Vedder is 53. Pearl Jam. Actor Mike Lookinland is 57. He was the youngest brother Bobby Brady on The Brady Bunch. Actress Jennifer Beals is 54. Flashdance. Model Tyson Beckford is 47. He was named the greatest male model of all time by Vogue Magazine in 2014. Host John Walsh is 72. Criminal investigator, human rights & victim rights advocate, and host/creator, of America’s Most Wanted. Walsh is known for his anti-crime activism, with which he became involved following the murder of his son, Adam, in 1981; in 2008, the late serial killer Ottis Toole was named as the killer of Walsh’s son.

Author Mary Higgins Clark is 90. I love her books. Considered to be The Queen of Suspense. Designer Kate Spade is 55. Singer Ricky Martin is 46. Author Stephenie Meyer is 44. Twilight. Best-selling author of 2008 (29 million) and 2009 (26.5 million.) That’s a lot of vampires. Actor-director Woody Allen is 82. Actress-singer Bette Midler is 72. Actor Treat Williams is 66. Hair. Musician-actor John Densmore is 73. The Doors.


Bruce McCandless, the first NASA astronaut to float untethered in space, died at 80. He said, “I wanted to say something similar to Neil Armstrong when he landed on the moon, so I said, ‘It may have been a small step for Neil, but it’s a heck of a big leap for me.’ That loosened the tension a bit.” He logged more than 312 hours in space.


January is a very special “moon” month. This month’s first full Moon, the full Wolf Moon, was rising on January 1. What a great way to start the year. A second full Moon, the Blue Moon rises on the 31st and brings the year’s only eclipse for North America just before dawn. Its total phase can be seen from west of the Mississippi and in western Canada. Both of January’s full Moons are Super Moons.


Moon Folklore: A bright first Moon promises rain and a bountiful harvest; a red-tinted Moon means a dry year. A growing Moon and a flowing tide are lucky times to marry. A halo around the Moon predicts wet or stormy weather


At the end of the day faith is a funny thing. It turns up when you don’t really expect it. It’s like one day you realize that the fairy tale may be slightly different than you dreamed. The castle, well, it may not be a castle. And it’s not so important, happy ever after, just that its happy right now. See, once in a while, once in a blue moon, people will surprise you and once in a while people may even take your breath away. – Meredith Grey


According to BabyCenter, the most popular baby girl names of 2017 were: #1 Sophia aka Sofia, Olivia, Emma, Ava, Isabella, Mia, Aria, Riley, Zoe, Amelia, Layla, Charlotte, Aubrey, Lily, Chloe, Harper, Evelyn, Adalyn, Emily and #20, Abigail. And the most popular baby boy names of 2017 were: #1 Jackson aka Jaxon, Liam, Noah, Aiden, Lucas, Caden, Grayson, Mason, Elijah, Logan, Oliver, Ethan, Jayden, Muhammad, Carter, Michael, Sebastian, Alexander, Jacob and #20 Benjamin.


What happens in the Artic doesn’t stay in the Artic, it affects the rest of the planet. According to the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration, permafrost in the Artic is thawing faster than ever, water is warming, and sea ice is melting at the fastest pace seen in 1,500 years. Because of the many buildings, roads and pipelines that are built on frozen land, thawing could make them vulnerable when the ground melts and shifts.


Per-ma-frost (noun) 1. A thick subsurface layer of soil that remains frozen throughout the year, occurring mainly in polar regions.


Iceland’s parliament has presented a bill that would require public and private businesses with 25 or more employees to prove through audits and certification that equal pay for men and women is provided or they will face fines, in what will be the first such requirement in the world.


The oldest tree on the White House lawn is a magnolia that is now too old and badly damaged to remain in place. According to specialists from the National Arboretum, a large portion of the tree was removed last week. According to folklore, Andrew Jackson brought the seedling to Washington because a magnolia was a favorite tree of his wife who died just days after he was elected. Hoover held Cabinet meetings there, Roosevelt spoke to Winston Churchill in its shade, Nixon walked past the tree as he left the White House for the last time and for decades, the magnolia was featured on the back of the $20 bill. Wood from the magnolia will be preserved and hopefully, a seedling will be available for replanting in the same area.


Think Prince, David Bowie, Jimi Hendrix, Jan Gaston (my best friend in HS who had a purple car and a purple bedroom) and Connie Rhodes (the sweet smiling face that you meet when you walk in the front door of The Source Weekly.) What do they all have in common? They love the color, purple. Pantone just announced its 2018 Color of the Year is Pantone 18-3838, also known at Ultra Violet.


We are in danger of destroying ourselves by our greed and stupidity. We cannot remain looking inwards at ourselves on a small and increasingly polluted and overcrowded planet.Stephen Hawking


As an iPhone owner, I wasn’t happy to find out that Apple issued software updates that deliberately “slowed down older-model phones so aging batteries lasted longer.” Huh? I don’t believe the aging part.  But, I dropped my phone so many times, it turned black and blue so there was no real need for a new battery. If you have a slow problem, install Battery Life, a free app that tells you how much capacity your battery still has or for more detail, try Lirum Info app (free or $2.99.)


The Paris-Texas Bakery on 288-B is quite a treat.  Anne-Elisabeth and I met there for breakfast this morning. On my first visit I had feasted on the avocado toast and a chocolate-almond croissant. Both were big winners. Today, we both ordered the sausage & cheddar quiche (it’s a huge slice with the most delicious smoke flavor) and the almond croissant (no chocolate.) There was nothing left on our plates. We drank our coffee and watched them roll out and cut cinnamon rolls, all while making the most of the Christmas break. Life is good.


A stay-at-home mother of five boys, opened her electric bill to find she was being charged over $284-billion. That’s dollars. She knew that her outside Christmas lights or Christmas tree wouldn’t have made that much difference. As it turned out, it was just a mistake from the electric company.


A New Year’s resolution is something that goes in one year and out the other – Anonymous


– Lisa

What I Heard This Week! Dec. 28, 2017

What I Heard This Week December 28, 2017

What I Heard This Week by Lisa BakerMy list of New Year’s resolutions. Here’s the first: (1) Stop procrastinating so much. I’ll post the rest tomorrow or maybe the day after.


House for Sale that once belonged to Rockets Hakeem Olajuwon. 7,271-square-feet for $595,000, includes four-bedrooms, six full baths, two half baths (can you imagine cleaning eight toilets), pool & spa, waterfall, outdoor kitchen, gym, office, wine cellar, game room, media room and small basketball court. I would have said, YES, immediately, but the teeny-tiny basketball court just won’t work for me and the wine room isn’t even stocked. Sigh. Former next-door neighbor was “Mattress Mack.


My New Year’s resolution is to simply remember to write 2018 instead of 2017 as the date.


The kids and I have Broadway Series tickets. It was their joint birthday gifts this past year, so we could secure tickets for Hamilton and because we really like Broadway shows. So, we have seen some shows that we likely would not have purchased tickets for if we hadn’t had the package. Last month it was Escape to Margaritaville, a musical of Jimmy Buffett. We were like, um, not excited but willing to take a chance. I should have known it was going to be a great evening when I found myself sitting in an Adirondack chair next to a giant beach ball, drinking a Hendricks and tonic with extra lime while looking at a strange mix of theatre people dressed in Hawaiian shirts and flip-flops. I was definitely overdressed. The Jimmy Buffett lead was played by Paul Alexander Nolan who we had seen in Jesus Christ Superstar in New York, an unbelievably talented guy who did a remarkable job on the Buffett songs. It was an outstanding show and at the end, Jimmy Buffet, in the flesh, came out and sang for us. They released a slew of beach balls and confetti cannons were shot. We stood in line at the stage door for autographs and I realized then, that Jimmy Buffett is short.  Gage and I are now newly converted Parrot Heads. This was a trial run show so in the spring, they head straight to Broadway.


New Year’s Eve, where ‘auld acquaintance be forgot,” unless, of course, those tests come back positive.” Jay Leno


It’s incomprehensible that someone could do this to a child. A mother has been ordered to undergo intensive psychotherapy for the next five years because she lied about her young son having cancer and sought unnecessary treatment for him including powerful pain drugs like Oxycodone and methadone. She raised money through a GoFundMe, shaved his head, eyebrows and told people that he had a brain tumor and that “some of the best oncologists” were treating the child.  She convinced her husband (what the heck!), doctors (come on, how long did they go to school) and family members that she, herself, was a doctor. Because she is aware of her deceptions, she is not considered to be mentally ill. Arghhh. We are creating a society of selfie-taking, egotistical, self-centered, human beings. She was given a five-year probation sentence (not even close to enough), the maximum under the law and if she violates probation, she faces three years in prison. (Maybe she will violate probation.)


Youth is when you’re allowed to stay up late on New Year’s Eve. Middle age is when you’re forced to.” Bill Vaughan


A former top Volkswagen official in the US, Oliver Schmidt, was sentenced to seven years in prison for his role in the automaker’s cheating on diesel emissions tests. This has cost VW more than $20-billion in fines and settlements.


My New Year’s resolution is to stop hanging out with people who ask me about my New Year’s resolutions.


RECENT BIRTHDAYS: Rapper Jay-Z is 48.  Actress Diane Ladd is 82. Director Joel Coen is 63. Fargo, The Big Lebowski, O’ Brother, Where Art Thou? Comedian Howie Mandel is 62. Actor Andrew McCarthy is 55. St. Elmo’s Fire, Pretty in Pink, Weekend at Bernie’s and was a member of the Brat Pack in the 80’s. Actress Liv Ullmann is 79. CBS correspondent Lesley Stahl is 76. Rocker Billy Gibbons is 68. Rocker Keith Richards is 74. Director Steven Spielberg is 71. Actor Brad Pitt is 54. Actress Katie Holmes is 39.

Actor-comedian Dick Van Dyke is 92. He’s the best. Singer Ted Nugent is 69. Actor Steve Buscemi is 60. He always seems to play the evil guy in the movies, but he is also the voice of Randall Boggs in Monsters. Inc. Actor Jamie Foxx is 50. Singer Taylor Swift is 28. Pope Francis is 81. Rock singer-musician Art Neville is 80. Actor Christopher Plummer is 88. Captain von Trapp in The Sound of Music and he recently replaced the scandal-plagued Kevin Spacey who was playing J. Paul Getty in “All the Money in the World,” and has since received a Golden Globe nomination for best supporting actor for this role.


Last Saturday, I took my daughter and her friend to downtown Alvin for a rockets class Christmas party, so while she was socializing, I visited Froberg’s Farm. First, I hit the fried pies for a pumpkin, a strawberry (that turned out to be apricot) and a pecan. They were hot, so I forced myself to eat the pecan pie before I even started shopping. I had to. Then I bagged loads of huge green onions, radishes, mustard greens (99 cents a bunch – cooked them with bacon), curly kale (99 cents a bunch – cooked them with orange juice), and turnips, red beets & cabbage that I roasted with olive oil and lemon pepper. A feast. Wait, let’s get back to Froberg’s. Then, I hauled my two-vegetable laden recycled bags over to Greak’s Smokehouse next door and added stuffed bell peppers and a package of pork chops thick enough for stuffing, along with (pay attention here) a bacon-wrapped, cream cheese stuffed, pork loin that was just perfect. There is no way to describe how yummy it was. It was quite a nice hour at Froberg’s. Don’t forget to check out the Peach Street Farmers Market Saturday mornings in Angleton.


New Year’s Resolution I’m going to lose weight, I’m going to exercise every day. I’m going to go on a diet and stick to it…Is that cake?


An unexpected surge of donations recently has allowed the Houston Firefighters Foundation to donate $52,000, enough for two additional swift water rescue boats for The Houston Fire Department. As we all know they struggled along with thousands of other volunteers to rescue stranded residents during Harvey.


Cheers to a New Year and another chance for us to get it right.” Oprah Winfrey


Cardinal Bernard Law, disgraced former archbishop, died at 86. Although never accused of abuse himself, he covered up years of child sex abuse in the Catholic Church in Boston by transferring sexually abusive priests to other parishes to protect them and the status of the church. The movie “Spotlight” was based on this story. He resigned in 2002 to take a job with the church in Rome.


My daughter and I watched “The Keepers,” last week on Netflix. It is a true-crime tale that was nominated for an Emmy for Outstanding Documentary Series 2017. Great show. Sister Cathy Cesnik was 26 and a beloved teacher at Baltimore’s Archbishop Keough HS when she was murdered in 1969. Fifty years later, students explain what was really happening at the school. There were seven shockingly brutal episodes.


Be always at war with your vices, at peace with your neighbors, and let each new year find you a better man.” Benjamin Franklin           Happy New Year’s my friends…Lisa


– Lisa

What! Dec. 21, 2017

What I Heard This Week December 21, 2017

Another human foot has washed ashore in Canada. That makes thirteen (13) feet attached to sports shoes, that have been found in this area since 2007. This most recent one was a tibia and fibula attached to a left human foot with a white ankle sock in a black running shoe. These feet have their own Wikipedia page and a map showing where all the feet were found. eww. One theory is shoe technology. More and more sports shoes are using air pockets or light foam which make them much more buoyant. One article said, “Notice there are no feet washing ashore in stiletto heels or flip flops.”


Onomatopoeia: is a word that imitates a natural sound. Boo, chomp, crunch, eek, huh, sniff, eek, giggle…just to name a few.


This was on Facebook. I found it to be very true especially with the recent cold weather. Why I prefer Summer over Winter. “When you get in a hot car, the a/c begins to work immediately. When you get in a cold car, the heat doesn’t start working until you get where you need to go.” Yep.


Ocean’s Eleven starred George Clooney, Brad Pitt, Elliot Gould, Bernie Mac, Matt Damon, Carl Reiner, Casey Affleck and was a remake of the 1960 Rat Pack film starring Peter Lawford, Frank Sinatra, Dean Martin, Sammy Davis Jr. and Joey Bishop. It is one of my favorite movies. Then came Ocean’s Twelve and Ocean’s Thirteen. I love them all. Now, there’s going to be Ocean’s Eight, starring Sandra Bullock, Anne Hathaway, Cate Blanchett, Mindy Kaling, Rihanna, Helena Bonham Carter, Awkwafina and Sarah Paulson.  (What a group, but what happened to Julia Roberts?) Sandra Bullock stars as Debbie Ocean, the ex-con sister of Danny Ocean (Clooney & Sinatra). The heist goes down at the annual Met Gala. Is it called Ocean’s Eight because it will take only 8 women to ‘kick the same patootie’ it took 11 guys? Release date is June 8, 2018. I’m ready.


Pi Kappa Alpha Fraternity at University of Houston has been suspended until 2023 because of abusing pledges during a three-day ritual last year that left one with a lacerated spleen. The indictment says that one pledge was forced to roll in vomit, spit and feces and had to go without food, drink and sleep during the three-day period. He was tackled in the dark by fraternity members and was later hospitalized. Sorry, folks, but five years is not enough time. Hazing is unacceptable just as bad behavior is unacceptable.


He who has not Christmas in his heart will never find it under a tree.” Roy L. Smith


To keep up with Amazon, Wal-Mart Stores Inc. will change their legal name to Walmart Inc. in February. Walmart wants to be your ‘everything’ just like Amazon and I bet if they take the dash out, this will work. Right. You know, keeping up with the Jones…the Hatfield’s and the McCoy’s.


Which reminds me. Remember the show in the 70’s called Alias Smith and Jones. Their outlaw names were Hannibal Heyes and Kid Curry, two of the most wanted and most successful outlaws in the history of the West, good-looking (and I mean, REALLY good-looking), popular with everyone except the trains and bankers, and with all their robbing and stealing, they had never shot anyone. The two of them decided that they wanted out of the bank and train robbing business, so as the show evolved, it was the story of the two of them trying to stay out of trouble until the Governor felt that they had earned and deserved amnesty. Sally Field played Clementine Hale and Susan Saint James was Miss Porter.


Daily Specials. Did you know that on Whiskey Wednesday at The Fill Station (new Brian’s BBQ) in downtown LJ you can get ½ price whiskey flights? And at Happy Hour (3-6pm) you can get a beer and chopped beef sandwich for $7.


RECENT BIRTHDAYS: Actor-comedian Tim Conway is 84. Just thinking of him makes me smile. Actor Don Johnson is 68. Miami Vice and white suits. Singer Lulu is 69. Think of “To Sir with Love.” Comedian-actress Rosanne Barr is 65. Actress Kate Capshaw is 64. She met her husband, Steven Spielberg, working on Indiana Jones and the Temple of Doom. Rock singer Ozzy Osbourne is 69. Actress Daryl Hannah is 57.  ‘Splash.’ Actress Julianne Moore is 57. Impressionist Rich Little is 79. “The man of a thousand voices.” Singer Tina Turner is 78. What’s Love Got to Do With It, We Don’t Need Another Hero, Proud Mary, Private Dancer…

Pop musician John McVie is 72. John Mayall & the Bluesbreakers, Fleetwood Mac.  Actress Kathryn Crosby Is 84. The daughter of a West Columbia, Texas schoolteacher and politician, she went to Hollywood as a beauty contest winner and onetime queen of the Houston Livestock Show and Rodeo. Actor economist Ben Stein is 73. Footwear designer Manolo Blahnik is 75. TV Host Bill Nye is 62. Bill Nye, the Science Guy. Actress Cathy Lee Crosby is 73. Wonder Woman in 1974. Broadcast journalist Stone Phillips is 63. He was born in Texas City. Pop singer Britney Spears is 36.  Actor Jeff Bridges is 68. Actress Patricia Wettig is 66. Thirtysomething.


Several months back when I was trying to assist us (you & me), on our journey to become way cooler people than we really are, I explained the Danish term ‘hygge’ (hue-ugh) which translates to ‘coziness’ in English, but recently the word has been used more to describe a sought-after lifestyle. So, today your new hip, trendy word is ‘lagom’ which is Swedish and is defined as not too little, not too much, just right. You know, like Goldilocks. This too, is a lifestyle or way of living, with suggestions of reducing your environmental impact on the world…making life easier, more enjoyable and less expensive by being frugal, fair and creating balance. Pay attention because you are going to hear this word again. Lagom. It will be named on shampoo bottles, candles, sandwich meat and paint colors as everyone jumps on this fad. OK, maybe not sandwich meat but you know what I’m saying.


Good news for many…Pfizer, maker of the little blue ($65 a single pill) Viagra, will now have a little competition when Teva Pharmaceuticals launches their own little white impotence pill. No word on what the cost is but Pfizer has decided to make its own generic version of Viagra and sell it for half the price. Good grief.


A Saudi prince was the mystery buyer of Leonardo da Vinci’s painting “Salvator Mundi” which brought $450.3-million at auction last month. Hmmm. Where will it end up.


A LAW WENT INTO EFFECT in Texas on September 1, 2017, that allows estate executors, guardians and trustees to gain access to the digital assets of those who die. It could include photos, digital music library, emails and credit card loyalty points. It could be a domain name (toys.com just sold for $5-million) but you will need to leave written instructions in a will or trust. So, if you have any embarrassing information with your “digital assets” you better make provisions quick.


This one is sick. A Wisconsin man was sentenced to federal prison after he was caught in a Houston undercover sting where he believed he was meeting a Houston mother at a hotel to have sex with her four-year-old child. I’m not telling you ‘all’ the ugly, just enough to gently remind you that there are some people in this world that we need to protect our kids from. Sigh.


Which is worse? Pitching a hissy fit or pitching a conniption fit? I guess it just depends on what part of Texas you are from.


The Houston Zoo welcomed Hasani, a three-year-old African lion that came from the Oregon Zoo. Since the zoo carnivores eat more than 36,000 pounds of meat annually, they would love it if you would help them with an end-of-year ‘Gift of Grub’ contribution. In fact, they have quite a few new mouths to feed with so many new baby animals…two baby Masai giraffes, a baby California sea lion, a baby Asian elephant, two baby Red River hogs, and two baby jaguars.


Personal story: First, I’m going to set this up by telling you that I’m allergic to cats. My daughter and I, along with a few employees, were up at The Source Weekly office one day during the catastrophic Harvey weeks. As we came in through the back door, Anne-Elisabeth heard a very faint meow. I ignored her plea of, “Mom. Please. Kittens. Listen,” and went to work. An hour or so later, in the rain, 7 of us ended up rescuing 3, three-week old kittens that were surrounded by water underneath our deck. Kay’s husband had to come up with his electric drill to help us remove boards from the deck to get those babies out. They were so very tiny, cold, dehydrated, wet and almost dead. We dried them off, kept them warm, then an hour later as we left, we saw (gasp) two more babies underneath the generator behind State Farm. OMG. Five kittens. We took them to the Gaspard’s house (which is kitty city,) drained Orren and Margaret of information, bottles and all sorts of kitty things. That evening, the SPCA kindly provided milk and droppers. They were fed every 2 hours. We lost 3 of the kittens over the next 24 hours which was pure agony that I can never forget, so we were very determined that the last two males were going to live. And my, how they have lived. We now have Winnie who was Winston until the vet found girl parts.  She has the most beautiful eyes and has the looks of a Blue Russian, is a very healthy eater, moves so gracefully and is full of love. You only have to say her name and her motor just rumbles in utter contentment. Then there is Sully (Sullivan) who was also supposed to be a male but, alas, wasn’t. Sully has a mild case of gender identity disorder (what would you do if everyone told you that you were a boy for the first 6 weeks of your life then decided you were a girl – talk about confusion), she is believed to be the runt of the litter, has soft little white stripes on her belly, might have selective hearing, can jump to the top of the shower door and is the sweetest most affectionate little ball of fur that you have ever seen. We don’t think she knows how to meow because instead, she chirps like a bird. They know yum-yum (food), nite-nite (they run to their sleeping box) and treats (self-explanatory.) Oh, and Mr. Strawberry, their favorite toy. My son, Gage, who is also allergic to cats, says that our house has an unbelievable amount of love in it now. What I am trying to tell you is that there are a ton of the cutest, sweetest puppies and kittens just looking for new parents at the SPCA. It breaks my heart to go over there and see animals just begging to have you touch them. If you had asked me 6-months ago if I was going to have two cats… absolutely, NOT.  There was no way.  But it sure has been fun. Expensive, yes. But who needs to be able to send their kids to college!


CVS Health, the second-largest US drugstore chain announced plans to buy Aetna, the third-largest health insurer, in a $69-billion deal. This merger could change the health care by lowering prescription costs. Something’s got to give. We can’t keep on like it is.


Catholic Health Initiatives (CHI) St. Luke’s Health System and Dignity Health said they agreed to merge operations, creating what could become one of the largest not-for-profit US hospital systems. The new system would have 139 hospitals in 28 states and employ 159,000 people.


A Utah man fled from police, then hid from them in a church’s boiler room, only to have to call 911 six hours later to be rescued because he had accidently locked himself in and couldn’t get out.


Merry CHRISTmas, my friends. Remember that when you quit believing in Santa, you get underwear.


– Lisa

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  • Much Ado About Nothing - Zombie Ants Redux

    by on February 8, 2018 - 0 Comments

      Originally published May 6, 2010, I’m rerunning this column as proof that no one – not man nor beast or even ants – are safe from the Zombie Apocalypse. I was sitting around somewhere recently where I had to wait. Probably a doctor’s office or the oil change place or something. This is usually […]

  • Much Ado About Nothing - Blueberries

    by on January 25, 2018 - 0 Comments

      I bought a pint of fresh blueberries recently at the grocery store despite the fact that they cost more per berry than an ounce of pure silver. But, I’m trying to eat better, so what the heck. I splurged. It wasn’t until I got home that I noticed that the label on top of […]

  • What I Heard This Week! Feb. 8, 2018

    by on February 8, 2018 - 0 Comments

    A student spit on a teacher at Cypress Woods High School so the teacher took off his belt and struck the kid. Wrong thing to do. Of course, it’s all on video. If these teachers don’t think that they are being set up to be videoed, then someone needs to let them know. First off, […]

  • Much Ado About Nothing - New California

    by on February 1, 2018 - 0 Comments

      Betsy Ross, get out your needle and thread, sister, because if a group of West Coasters get their way, we’re adding a star to Old Glory with the establishment of our 51st State: New California. It seems some folks over there aren’t feeling so sun-shiney about their state’s state of affairs and want a […]

  • What I Heard This Week! Feb. 1, 2018

    by on February 1, 2018 - 0 Comments

    A mom turned her 14-year-old son over to police after he and his two friends carjacked an 81-year-old woman at gunpoint outside a Walmart in Florida. Surveillance video captured the three youths and then…his mom saw the video of the carjacking on the news. What a woman. I nominate her for Mom of the Year […]

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