This is a previous issue re-worked with Nvu.

Founded December 17,1912    Ceased Publication Tuesday, February 1,1951

Book 1 Volume 7

Saturday, January 03, 2004 7:22 AM 41 deg at LVIA and 42 deg in the bus stop
    This marks a New Year and a new beginning. I suppose some New Year’s resolutions should be made. The resolve is OK but the execution is not so hot. For one thing, Queen wants me to go back to the Iron Works. I hate those #%4&@ machines. However, I will try it in spite of my misgivings.
    My blood glucose was an unbelievable 109 and my weight 206. It beats me. I feel just fine.
    George and family left town a bit after 10 AM, We just got their two rings so we know they got home safely.
    After they left, we went down town. Queen wanted to do some shopping at the stores and then we walked from Keystone down to 6th street and back to the car. It wasn’t a beautiful day, but it was very comfortable walking and great to be out with my beautiful wife.
<See below>

    I am both glad. pleased, and amazed at the response to my new web pages. I have many Palmerton pictures and I am always looking for more. Perhaps a reader who has some will share them with us all.
    Queen’s cousin,  Bob Greenawalt, who lives in Rochester, New York, in the heart of  state’s snow belt wrote us an e-mail with some of his comments. All comments are appreciated. 
    Here is a site I just found on the Wall Street Journal’s on line paper. It is  As I looked at it has some profound stuff in it. It appears as though it would appeal to some deep thinkers. It might be worth some one’s time to look. I am going to bookmark it.   
    Tonight for supper Queen had a bowl each of her homemade chicken noodle soup. She had a small piece of uncooked chicken left from last evening’s meal and she used it in a delicious soup just enough both for us.

Sunday, January 04, 2004 7:23 AM 52 deg at LVIA and 48.9 in the bus stop
    It is a wet and rainy morning. Butternut is attending to “business” without me. I shall have to check it out. Golly, but later in the week they predict temperatures in the teens for the highs <Burr!!!!>
    This morning my glucose level was 122 and my weight 206. I think we shall take down the Christmas tree today. The cold weather forecast does not bode well for outdoor work as the week wears on.
Now at 10:39 AM we just returned from our regular Columbia Ave walk. This morning. not very many were out.     We did meet Romaine Biege also on her walk. As we were going up Columbia we were greeted by our friend and stalwart policeman, Tommy Wentz on his rounds in the Police car. We chatted a bit and I asked him if he got a deer this year. He said, no he never even fired a shot. I said that Mr. T. Pierce Davies got one. Oh, he replied that was only a half a deer. I asked what did he mean by that remark. Oh, he said,” they are easy to hit when they are drinking milk”!! Ha

I’ll bet you don’t know what I am thinking!!

    <11:52> we just finished taking down the Christmas tree. Already I am looking forward to next years tree. It will be just as this one was and all our past trees have been, the most beautiful tree we ever had.
    Tonight we dined at God’s restaurant again. As usual, Queen made her own homemade spaghetti. It was one of her very best efforts. To quote Mr. Davies once again, “If God made anything better, he is keeping it for himself.”
    In last weeks edition I made mention of what I called the Hansut house. Golly Steve Jensen, set me right on that one. To Quote,”  
     The house you identified in the Palmerton Press as the Hansut house [422 Columbia] is where I grew up until 1965 (and where the Elliston Brothers frequently repaired our TV!).  It was originally the home of the Gearharts when it was a single-family home.  Mr. Gearhart was a superintendent of NJZ., making him eligible to live in a mansion-sized house.  I'd be curious who originally lived in the house to the left of the Gearhart house across from the Lendvays.  When we were living there, it was the Kleins.  After we moved it was bought by the Radics (of Radics Cut-Rate just right of the Citizens Bank) Steve” 
    I got this from Bob Green. I laughed until my sides hurt. At first, I was reluctant to put it in here, but it is just too damn good to keep out. I must say that this comes as close to as what my Dad called “telling someone to go to Hell in a nice way” as only the English can say it. It appeals to my English roots.
    Speaking of which, my sister Mary took the picture below when she visited my other sister Dot, when they lived in England for an extended period.  Therefore, from the picture I know that, there are more Ellistons still in England.  I see that Grandpa, George Elliston, who went over the hill, when his ship docked in America, during his stint in the British navy was not the last of them. I presume the British naval authorities have stopped looking for him by now.

Subject: British Letter of Complaint: but doesn't it leave you wondering how he REALLY feels?
 What follows is an example of British humor in a complaint letter sent to a British ISP.  The piece suggests two things:
 1) Americans and Canadians are not the only ones who get poor service from their ISP, cable, or alarm companies.  (NTL is a cable operator in Britain).
 2) The Brits probably write the world's best letters of comlaint.
Dear Cretins,
     I have been an NTL customer since 9th July 2001, when I signed up for your four-in-one deal for cable TV, cable modem, telephone, and alarm monitoring.  During this three-month period I have encountered inadequacy of service which I had not previously considered possible, as well as ignorance and stupidity of monolithic proportions.  Please allow me to provide specific details, so that you can either pursue your professional prerogative and seek to rectify these difficulties -- or more likely (I suspect) so that you can have some entertaining reading material as you while away the working day smoking, and drinking vendor-coffee on the bog in your office.
    My initial installation was cancelled without warning, resulting in my spending an entire Saturday sitting on my arse waiting for your technician to arrive.  When he did not arrive, I spent a further 57 minutes listening to your infuriating hold music, and the even more annoying Scottish robot woman telling me to look at your helpful website.  HOW?  I alleviated the boredom by playing with my testicles for a few minutes -- an activity at which you are no doubt both familiar and highly adept.  The rescheduled installation then took place some two weeks later, although the technician did forget to bring a number of vital tools -- such as a drill-bit, and his cerebrum.  Two weeks later, my cable modem had still not arrived.  After 15 telephone calls over four weeks my modem arrived, six weeks after I had requested, and begun to pay for it.  I estimate your internet server's downtime is roughly 35% -- the hours between about 6pm and midnight, Monday through Friday, and most of the weekend.
    I am still waiting for my telephone connection.  I have made nine calls on my mobile to your no-help line, and have been unhelpfully transferred to a variety of disinterested individuals who are, it seems, also highly skilled bollock jugglers.  I have been informed that a telephone line is available (and someone will call me back); that I will be transferred to someone who knows whether or not a telephone line is available (and then been cut off); that I will be transferred to someone (and then been redirected to an answering machine informing me that your office is closed); that I will be transferred to someone and then been redirected to the irritating Scottish robot woman, and several other variations on this theme.
    Doubtless you are no longer reading this letter, as you have at least a thousand other dissatisfied customers to ignore, and also another one of those crucially important testicle moments to attend to.  Frankly I don't care.  It's far more satisfying as a customer to voice my frustrations in print than to shout them at your unending hold music.  Forgive me, therefore, if I continue.
    I truly thought British Telecom was shit, and they had attained the holy piss-pot of god-awful customer relations; and that no one, anywhere, ever, could be more disinterested, less helpful, or more obstructive to delivering service to their customers.  That's why I chose NTL, and because, well, there isn't anyone else is there?  How surprised I therefore was, when I discovered to my considerable dissatisfaction and disappointment what a useless shower of bastards you truly are.  You are sputum-filled pieces of distended rectum incompetents of the highest order.
      BT -- wankers though they are -- shine like brilliant beacons of success in the filthy mire of your seemingly limitless inadequacy.  Suffice to say that I have now given up on my futile and foolhardy quest to receive any kind of service from you.  I suggest that you cease any potential future attempts to extort payment from me for the services which you have so pointedly and catastrophically failed to deliver.  Any such activity will be greeted initially with hilarity and disbelief and will quickly be replaced by derision, and even perhaps bemused rage.
      I enclose two small deposits, selected with great care from my cat's litter tray, as an expression of my utter and complete contempt for both you and your pointless company.  I sincerely hope that they have not become desiccated during transit -- they were satisfyingly moist at the time of posting, and I would feel considerable disappointment if you did not experience both their rich aroma and delicate texture.  Consider them the very embodiment of my feelings towards NTL, and its worthless employees.
      Have a nice day.  May it be the last in your miserable short lives, you irritatingly incompetent and infuriatingly unhelpful bunch of twits.
Monday, January 05, 2004 7:42 AM 36 Deg at LVIA and 35.4 in the bus stop
    It is a wet and chilly day this morning. I took our recyclables as well as the Lafayette Ave Elliston’s recyclables to the alley this morning. I also took the old Christmas tree up there for eventual pick up. The park bench did not look too inviting this morning.
    Since this is washday, it means that this week is the dreaded sheet day. I got to bed this morning about 12:30 AM, because I had to change my bedding. Queen did a bit of the wash yesterday so that should ease her burden today.
    This morning my blood glucose was 115 and my weight 206. I plan to go to the “new Iron Works” this morning. I promised Queen that I would try it. <10:15 AM Later>Well, I went down to the “works” and I had to make an appointment for this Friday for an evaluation and orientation program. I brought home a bunch of forms to be filled out and that should take care of it. We shall see.
    This afternoon Queen wants to go to K-Mart. We should be leaving shortly. <Later> We were down and back. We also went to Super Fresh, they had salmon on sale, and we got a filet. Part of which I froze and the other we shall have tomorrow night. Hey, I need all the brain food I can get.
    Golly, but I lucked out! Our friend and neighbor Mike was able to retrieve all of the stuff that was on those zip disks. He burned a CD ROM for me, and I copied it. I was afraid they were gone forever. Pictures such as the Palmerton Supply Company’s coal shed seen below and the old Mack railcar were all on them. There are a great number of pictures now available to me. I thank Mike very much for his efforts.
 We were pleased to hear that his new diet is going better than he expected. That is great news. He is indeed a good man whom we certainly want to encourage.

Tuesday, January 06, 2004 7:06 AM 30 deg at LVIA and 30.1 in the bus stop
    It is a clear cold day this morning. As soon as the coffee is ready, I shall be heading for the park bench. This morning my weight was 206 and the blood glucose123.
    This morning I availed myself of the park bench right next to the bus stop. It is a beautiful day today, but brisk. Tomorrow it is supposed to get downright cold with high temperatures in the teens and low 20’s for highs, Burrrr
    This morning I went to Rite Aid for my B.P. heart medicine. At the same time I spoke to both the pharmacist as well as the store manager about the glucose meter I purchased last August. It had a $30 dollar rebate on its purchase. I had forgotten to send it in but when I showed it to son George he pointed out that the rebate was out of date 2 months before I ever bought it.  The manager said she would look into it. I told her I hoped she could help me but heck; I was no worse off that before I spoke to her. As I was leaving, I saw Queen’s swimming buddy, Helen Wisocky, as she was entering.
 For some reason the Blood pressure medication, that Dr. Nicholson had prescribed, for me for years, Covera HS, is no longer available. I called the Doctor’s office, nurse Judy spoke with the Doctor, and he is changing my medication to a different one. The new stuff is Verelan PM also a calcium channel blocker with the same active ingredient.  We shall see.
    9:42 AM I just had a phone call from David Williams, Fritz’s brother, and another good friend. It was good to hear from him. He periodically keeps in touch. He too thinks the letters are an improvement as a web page with pictures. Since he is not currently using his Dell computer, I print them out and mail them to him. He misses a lot because that laser printer only prints in black and white.
    Before he called, I was busy straightening out a mess with my speakers on my small home PA system. Honest to God I think Rube Goldberg built that system. It enables me to pipe music all through the house, basement, as well as the garage area. All this was hooked up years ago, long before I got married and that was twenty-two years, and I don’t remember how I connected them or where everything went. Of course, there is no schematic diagram. Ha!! Recently it was necessary to replace the old amplifier due to age and lightning damage from over the years. In so doing, I am forced to reconfigure the whole works and finally do it right. <Sigh>. Usually I am content to let” sleeping dogs lay” however, necessity forced me to change, I think now, finally, all is well. Geez!!!
    This afternoon about 2:15, the doorbell rang and there was the crew from Strunk’s tree service. Sam Strunk is our devout Mennonite tree man. His prices are reasonable and he treats us fairly. I have no complaints about his work and have in the past recommended him to others.
They were here to take down the large pine tree near the front of our property. They will be back tomorrow to finish the job. Here are some of the scenes from today.


    Golly, but for a time while Sam was up in the tree, it snowed like the dickens. It didn’t last for long. If you notice, the yard is white with the stuff.
    Tonight for supper, Queen made homemade beef vegetable soup. There is enough left  for another meal or to be used for lunches. I put the rest out in our bus stop fridge.
    While I am writing this thing, Queen is playing solitaire on her computer. Since it does not have a mouse, she has to learn how to use the touch pad on it. She is much better that I at using that thing.  

Wednesday, January 07, 2004 7:23 AM 16 deg at LVIA and 14.4 in the bus stop
    This morning my blood glucose was 131 and my weight 207.
Geez it is cold out there. Butternut and I were out but neither one of us stayed long. I sat up on the park bench viewing the half removed pine tree. I suppose they will be back to finish the job sometime but it is damn cold today for outdoor work.
    In my e-mail, this morning is a site from son George. He knows that I am a great fan of the late great organist Virgil Fox. Some of his stuff is now available. This is an interesting site for any who may be a nut like I. It is at
It permits one to play entire sections of some of his available stuff. I think it is great.
I just discovered something about my IncrediMail program that is very good. I keep all my e-mails on the server since I read it on several machines.
         It has on the tool bar, a box called “advanced.” Clicking on that, it checks all the e mail in a specific account and lets me know what it is on my server without downloading it. If it is junk, it never has to arrive in my in box I can delete it right there. Since I have several Prolog e mail accounts, it is fine but what is even nicer is that it can be asked to check ALL the email left on the server and if you wish it will permanently remove them. Ordinarily doing that job through Prolog’s TWIG is a real pain. This is fast and very easy.
This morning I had to pay my Prolog cable modem bill. I parked on Delaware Avenue and went for a walk. Man, that was a big mistake. Walking east to 6th Street was easy, but coming back, it was outright painful. I stopped at the TN office to warm up and then came home. Winter sucks!!!
Ah, if only

    Tonight, we had the salmon filet we got the other day. In addition a pair of small red potatoes, broccoli for Queen and Brussels sprouts for me, and her famous Cole slaw with cottage cheese, as a side dish. It was sure good!
    I see that Sam did not come here today to work on the tree. Yesterday he had a ski mask on because of the cold. Today, that wind chill could be dangerous I can say that just from my short time out on my walk.

Thursday, January 08, 2004 7:32 AM 19 deg at LVIA and 17.3 in the bus stop
    The blood glucose this morning was 125 and the weight 206. This morning I used the lower park bench once again. It is damn cold out there but I was comfortable. There is no wind along with the cold and it was actually quite nice sitting there with my coffee.

    When I get the car out of the garage, I shall have to take the garbage up with me. I have an extra garbage container outside the back door that is half filled with water. It is solid ice, now. The other week I had to drag the bag through the snow and crawl up the steps, next to the garage, At least that isn’t necessary today. Queen wants to do our shopping today so we will be busy kids.
 Before we went, I went down to the Borough Hall and spoke to Roger Danielson, the Borough Manager. about what to do with this old maple tree out in front of the house. When Sam Strunk comes again, I want to ask his price for removing it. However, I am not keen on having to put in a new tree. Roger said if I take it down, a new one must go in, or he will not approve the removal. I must give this some thought.  I think Sam is also a landscaper so I want his opinion on this too. Sam is an honest man and will tell the truth. As you can see below the tree is rather grotesque and not much left of it.

    <Later> we got back a bit after 12PM. There was a lot of hustle and bustle but it is done now. The crowds were not too bad. We are both tired but OK. A rest felt good this afternoon.
    Last summer Queen and I were up at Carbon Plaza shopping in Giant, and we noticed that there was health fair underway set up with booths of all kinds of health care providers. It was instituted by our state representative, Keith McCall. It was very interesting.
There were retirement homes, pharmacies, health insurance providers, and even undertakers. I stopped at the hearing aid booth where the technician placed a miniature TV camera in the ear with no eardrum. Sheez, it looked like the Holland tunnel!! It just went on and on. No, I couldn’t see the wall on the other side, Ha!!
 It was aimed primarily, at us geezers. Geez, I must have collected enough pens to last for years!
We went up and down the display of vendors. There must have been over a hundred of them. Queen signed entries for practically every one that was running a drawing for something. About a month after the Health Fair, Queen got a phone call from an Insurance company in Stroudsburg, that she had won a dinner out at any restaurant of our choice. However, nothing ever happened. Tonight, she got a phone call from Harrisburg, from the man to whom she had originally spoken. He must have been transferred there. He found the letter of a meal offer on his desk. He is going to mail it tomorrow. Queen offered him several opportunities to get off the hook, but he said “no, fair is fair”. Golly, one of these nights, we will be going to the Terrace restaurant.
I just received a e-mail from Queen’s niece, Jackie Clair, in Michigan. In it, she gave me a web site that should prove useful to those philanthropists among us.  It appears to be a reference guide  to reputable charitable organizations. We all get stuff in both “snail mail” as well as E mail. It is worth a look. I am always interested in stuff my readers send me.

Friday, January 09, 2004 7:46 AM 19 deg at LVIA and 19.3 in the bus stop
    This morning my blood glucose was 138 and my weight 207. Today is “Iron Works” day. I must do down at 9 AM for evaluation and the beginning of the new sessions.
    It is very cold this morning and is expected to get colder as the day goes on. Burr neighbor, Mike, must be in his glory with this stuff!  I prefer to be concerned if it is too hot to go swimming today. Well that will happen in six months.
    <10:02 AM>well I went for my first session. I met Nan Campton, Marylyn Ord,  Connie and Bob Reinhardt who were all  there. They all exercise  regularly. Today, they all offered encouragement for the old Geezer. Nan said, you have been writing about this and now I see that you are doing it. <Grin>
    The equipment there does all that the stuff at the Good Shepherd “Iron Works” at 2nd and Franklin does, but here there is much more in the way of specialized equipment instead of the one size fits all at Franklin Ave. Most of what I will be using is for my specific needs. I want to maintain my swimming muscles so that once again, I can go the distance on opening day at PMPA. The young man who helped me was very good, patient, and informative. As he adjusted each machine for my own personal use, he wrote down my personal settings for each machine on a clipboard, so that I will be able to refer to it next time.
These pictures were taken at their Grand opening.
    This afternoon Queen was running the plow upstairs when she said she heard a noise like someone falling down the stair steps. Well it was Butternut. He often lies on the landing at the top of the stair steps and waits for her. Butternut is not at all enthusiastic about the vacuum cleaner, so he often waits for her there. He must have been near the edge and rolled over in his sleep. He has often done that on her bed when the two of them are “napping” but nothing like this. What ever happened he was just coming back up the stairs. He must have also knocked over a small card table chair at the bottom of the steps. It must have fallen over on him. Apparently, he was unaffected by it. Me, I was out here at the computer and never saw a thing. Geez!!
    Tonight for supper Queen is having stuffed peppers. That hasn’t been on the menu for quite a while. I sure does smell good in here as I am typing this.
    I had best end this for this week. Please love one another Mom and Bob [Queen and Bobby]
A man cannot be comfortable without his own approval.
Mark Twain
An Englishman is a person who does things because they have been done before. An American is a person who does things because they haven't been done before.
Mark Twain
Clothes make the man. Naked people have little or no influence on society.
Mark Twain
Courage is resistance to fear, mastery of fear - not absence of fear.
Mark Twain 

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