Friday, April 28, 2006


I had already read that the Judge in London had made his ruling in favor of the author Dan Brown of "The Da Vinci Code," but this morning I found a new article about the case that I found most interesting and amusing.

It seems that a Lawyer Dan Tench, in reading the Judges ruling found that every so often there was a letter that was 'italicized'. At first he thought it was a mistake, until he realized that the italicized letters in the first few paragraphs spelled out "smith code."

He went on to find many more italicized letters and this is what it looks like,
"smithcodeJaeiextostpsacgreamqwfkadpmqz." (I bet the 'J' is for Jesus, you figure out the rest.)
He hasn't broken the rest of the code yet, and it seems that Judge Smith is not talking.

A Judge, with a sense of humor -- AWESOME !

Read the full text here:

I think you will enjoy it, I did.

Monday, April 24, 2006


I don't know why I was shocked to find out that there are people in Iraq that blog, but I was.

Yet at the same time I was ecstatic to finally get a chance to view the opinions of the people who live there. Not the government, not the politicians, but the residence. The people that have lived under the conditions that existed in the past and are now living under the conditions that exist today.

I found this article on the internet news, and although much of it saddens me, I am so glad for the opportunity to learn about the many varied opinions of -- at last, the people themselves.

Here are some brief excerpts from their varied blogs:

"The West should listen to the opinions of the simple Iraqi people. They only hear from analysts and politicians,"

" Zeyad wrote. "Free country my ass."

But there were moments of pride and exhilaration, too.
One came when Iraqis voted for an interim legislature in January 2005, their first democratic election in decades

"American forces' crime against the worshippers," screamed a headline in Hammorabi's blog. "

"The blood and sacrifices by the American soldiers and people will never be forgotten," The Mesopotamian wrote"

Take this verbal walk with me through Iraq and become enlightened by the many varied opinions. Feel their love , their hate, their fears and their desperation.

Titled, 'Iraqi Bloggers Weigh in on Changing Nation'

You can find this article here:

Wednesday, April 19, 2006


I woke up this morning and felt like I had been attacked in my sleep.
Beaten to a pulp by an intruder. My head was throbbing, I felt like someone had hit me in the face with a baseball bat just above the bridge of my nose, which incidentally is running like a faucet. Tears running down my face and I'm not even crying.
Chest heavily doing it's best to pull in some air, while coughing this dry hacking cough by trying to breath by mouth, since my nose is not working, except when I am sneezing.

I don't know which is worse the sneezing or the pulsating in my temples that accompanies each and every sneeze. And believe me when I sneeze everyone knows it.
I don't know what makes some people have a little bitty noise when they sneeze but when I sneeze I think it is heard around the world. It is one of those big uncontrollable ' aaaahchews' that leaves people thinking did that big noise come out of that little woman.

It is the dreaded pollen. Every year it shows up about the same time and attacks anyone and everyone who is volurnable. And I can't think of a sole who is not.

When it's pollen time, it doesn't matter what color your vehicle is, red, blue, or green, every morning it will be yellow. Completely and totally Yellow. Covered in tons of a powdery looking yellow substance called pollen.
It lasts for weeks and every morning I have the agony of a hangover without the pleasure of a drink. Not one single drink. What a bummer!

When I grew up in California I don't remember pollen? I remember smog, but not pollen? I don't know which is the lesser of the two evils, pollen or smog.

I remember hating the smog and thinking how good it would be to get away from it, never feel it blur my eyes or taste it again.

But since I've been away from the smog for such a long time the taste of it has left my senses and somehow I wonder if it was all that bad after all.

It's hard to remember what it was really like, and I wonder, if it's time to trade the pollen for the smog once again?

Saturday, April 15, 2006


Once again Easter rolls around and Children will be waiting for their Easter basket to see what the bunny has left for them. Eggs will be decorated and family and friends will gather together to enjoy the feast of the year in celebration that Christ is arisen.

While I celebrate Easter this year, I will be doing what I do every year, reflecting back in time. Remembering all of the Easters that I celebrated growing up.
Easter week brings my Mother foremost to my mind. Her strong convictions, her love of her religion, her dedication to our heritage.
When Momma suffered for the sake of her religion everyone suffered. We all had to fast, but she wasn't as hard on us as she was on herself. She was a wonderful cook and made even fasting palatable.

Then of course there was confession. She made us go to confession as far back as I can remember. If you were to young to have committed any really bad sins there's still two questions the Priest would always ask. Have you been a good girl this year? Of course I would always answer yes, and then the biggie, have you told any lies this year? That's when I would hesitate, Well Father maybe just a little white lie.
I could see that he wanted to smile but he would hold firm and act like I did something terrible and say in his broken English, Oh po, po, po, not even a little white lie, Maria, (translation po,po emphasis something bad, kind of like , 'Oh no, no').
Of course I would have to say, O.K. Father, then he would dismiss me and I would get to have my piece of bread and spoon full of wine. Oh how I loved that warm wine. No grape juice for Greek church.

Greek Easter is one of most beautiful and revered celebrations in the Eastern Orthodox Church. Since the Orthodox Church follows the Julian calendar, Greek Easter does not always fall on the same day as American Easter. It rotates, only once every four years it falls on the same day as American Easter. Oh how I used to look forward to that fourth year, so that when I went to school after Easter and all the girls were telling what they got in their basket I could join in and not have to say I'll get mine later and have to go through the big explanation as to why the 'Bunny' would be detained.

Greek Easter services are beautiful. Church is held at night. At the front of the church is a beautiful simulated casket (but it doesn't look like a casket), it looks more like a canopy bed all decorated in lace and Gardenias with a life size (cardboard), Jesus laying in it. The Smell of the Gardenias are so strong they could knock you out. At midnight all of the lights are turned out and candles are lighted one by one until the whole church is nothing but glowing candles everywhere, then church is dismissed.

Everyone tries to make it home with at least one candle still lighted, for it is good fortune if you can make it home with the candle still lighted and place the fire of it just close enough over the outside above your door so all the smoke from the candle can touch the wall and you make the sign of the cross with the smoke. Then you can blow out the candle and the feast begins. All of our neighbors knew that it was Greek Easter when they would pass by and see the cross of smoke above our door.

There will be lamb, to symbolize the Biblical sacrificial lamb. Easter egg bread to symbolizes the original breaking of the bread that Jesus shared with his disciples. Tons of red dyed eggs, I'm sure you can guess what that symbolizes, and tons and tons of all kinds of food and desserts to make it the most enjoyable feast of the year and the wine. Let us not forget the wine. Of course the fact that you have fasted makes everything even more delicious if that is possible.

So while I will be having our traditional American Easter as my children know it, my heart will be going back in time while my mind will be playing this little video inside of me of Easters past.

Church is where your heart is and since there is no Greek church where I live I will do what I always do, light my candle in front of my Sainted picture and give my 'Thanks' here in my home --and for Momma, some red dyed eggs of course.


Saturday, April 08, 2006


Well, we had a little excitement this weekend. This was my daughters long weekend off of work. Every other weekend my daughter gets Friday, Saturday and Sunday off of work. Nice hey? Well not really it's the reward for having to work Friday, Saturday and Sunday on the alternate weekends, so when her long weekends come around it's nice to plan a little something to do. Some of our plans fell through because the time got away from us , so we just decided to go to one of our favorite Mexican restaurants. It was great as usual but we got full to fast and didn't finish the food , still since we all suffer from 'sweet tooth syndrome' we ordered dessert to go and took everything with us in doggie bags, ruff,ruff, lol.

It was raining and crappy out but we stopped at 'Wally World' on the way home for a few minutes, bad move on our part the dessert had ice cream on it. No one stops at Wally World for a few minutes.
We make it back home with our melted ice cream dessert. Brain storm, stick it in the freezer for a little while.

We have only been home for a short while, BB, is on the computer, FWL, is in his bedroom playing a game or something and I am walking across the living room when I see the news commentator pointing at red zones on the map and a signal at the bottom of the TV screen flashing tornado warning. No biggie, it happens all of the time this time of the year, but as usual I said, hey you guys we're under a tornado warning.

Then all of a sudden, my scanner starts going nuts with, there is a tornado coming this way and at the same time from the TV I hear this loud frantic voice repeating over and over, " if you are able to hear this message take cover immediately. If you are within hearing distance of this message go to a shelter and take cover immediately. There is a tornado within such and such minutes of you."
O.K. time to panic!
I' m yelling, BB, do you hear this take cover immediately, tornado is headed straight for us. FWL front and center now we have to leave a tonado has been spotted. What, he yells back as he is running towards me. BB is grabbing her purse and her kid and they are running out to the car and I stop to turn off the computer, (like it's going to matter if a tornado hits) .
Then it hits me, where is my son. BB and FWL are in the car and I run next door and bang on the door no answer. No vehicles out there either. OMG, I don't know if he is in town in his pickup truck or in the big truck hauling a big load. I run back and yell at BB to try to call her brother and I run back in the house to gab my purse. We find out he is O.K. and we head for shelter. When I am home alone, I never go to a shelter I just stay put and hope that I get lucky, but now that my daughter and grandson are living with me they are so stubborn they won't go without me, so off we go.

We're not even sure where to go. The courthouse? Post Office? Jail? Da, close your eyes and pick one. Bingo it's the jail and there are people everywhere lined up trying to get in.
I'm thinking , shit, I want to be at home by myself,Que Sera, Sera and all that stuff.
We fall in place with the others and every room is full, the rest of us are having to line the hallways.
So hear we are, ( how ironic), lined up against the walls of the hallways soak and wet , while prisoners are handing out blankets to people standing against the walls shoulder to shoulder huddled together, everyone respectful, everyone caring, and everyone being polite. The white southerners, the blacks, this little yankee, and the legal and illegal Mexicans and let me tell you, right now we are all loving each other. I didn't even mind the guy with the booze breathe next to me.

Soon it was over and we were all released from jail, haha.
I'm not sure what happened to the tornado. I don't know if it changed direction or if it dissipated before it got to us, but in any case we were now only under a storm warning and it was safe to leave.

Then I notice something -- something that made me feel kind of sad, everyone is disassembling and leaving as they came, forming their own little ethnic groups as they go.

For one brief moment we were all one, pulling together, once again we are now separated.
Segregated --- by choice.
Perhaps not by choice, perhaps it's like that saying --- 'old habits die hard.'

Thursday, April 06, 2006


My problem with the immigration issue, is that there should be no issue!!
If you came here illegally you should have to go back and apply to come back into the country legally just like everyone else has to do.

Yes I feel sorry for the Mexican people that are striving for a better life and my heart truly goes out to anyone in their position, but the fact is they have broken the law and now the government wants to change the law to accommodate their crime.

What about all of the people around the world that are not connected to us by land and can not sneak across a border to get here? What does this say to them. People from Greece, Italy, India, Germany and all around the world.
These people have to apply for a visa for entry into the U.S. and wait their turn for acceptance. Some of them wait for years, some of them never make it at all because, if I remmeber the immigration laws correctly we only accept a certain number per year.
If this has changed over the years please fill free to correct me. It has been a long time since I have been involved with immigration issues, but being of Greek decent I have seen many people come to America on visitors visas or work visas , and try to stay here or apply for an extension, only to be turned down and sent back. I have also seen some foreigners not go back when their visa expired but the immigration agents would find them and they would be sent back to their own country. Deported without mercy.

If the government changes the law to accommodate this crime then I think they should change the law for all of the women that have been sitting in prisons for years everywhere, who in their desperation murdered their abusive husbands. In the years past when there was no law to help a women living with , separated from, or even divorced from an abusive man what alternative did she have but to protect herself, the law wouldn't do it. So please Mr. President, release them all they didn't commit murder it was self defense!

Sen. John McCain gave a speech at a union leaders meeting in Arizona, here is a small portion of what he said and how the crowd responded.

' immigrants were taking jobs nobody else wanted. He offered anybody in the crowd $50 an hour to pick lettuce in Arizona.
Shouts of protest rose from the crowd, with some accepting McCain's job offer.
"I'll take it!" one man shouted.
McCain insisted none of them would do such menial labor for a complete season. "You can't do it, my friends."
Some in the crowd said they didn't appreciate McCain questioning their work ethic. '

I realize that $50 is an over statement, but I live in a state where minimum wage is only $5.15 an hour and jobs of any kind are not plentiful Yet we have illegal Mexican families here in our town working while some of the people that were raised in this town are out of work. Many of the Mexican families also receive food stamps and medical care.

Why does this happen? It doesn't happen because the people that live here won't work on these farms, it happens because of the greed of the farm owners. It is a benefit to them to hire illegals because they will work for less money, even $1.00 per hr. less is a big savings at the end of the year for the employer.

So please Mr. McCain don't say the people here won't work. They are simply being outbid for the jobs in question. True enough they won't work for less then minimum wage, which in this state is pretty much poverty pay anyway. Yet to buy food or a vehicle here cost more then most states that have higher minimum wages.
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