Herald Journal Columns
Jan. 21, 2002

Courage, or just being crazy?

By LYNDA JENSEN

Saturday will go down in history as being the fine line between having courage and being crazy, since I decided to invite my son's entire kindergarten class to his sixth birthday party.

That's 16 screaming kids. . . in case you were interested. Actually, it's 19 kids, if you count the neighbors.

Technically, the definition of courage is taking great personal risk with full knowledge of what the consequences may be.

Being dumb is also taking great personal risk with full knowledge of what the consequences may be. In this case, I'm not sure which one applies.

He loved it, and the kids had a ball. I, on the other hand, am not interested in having another party until he's 16. And he can pay for it himself.

Mark Twain revisited

Did anyone see the Channel 2 documentary on Mark Twain last week? It was wonderful.

Mark Twain ­ aka Samuel Clemens ­ died a lonely man in 1910. He was born 150 years too early for his time ­ but only in a medical sense, since he had to watch almost all of his children and wife die of curable diseases.

Let's be thankful for modern medicine! The good Lord gave us knowledge as a gift. Bless Him.

Here are a few quotes from Twain himself, taken from the web site www.twainquotes.com:

Familiarity breeds contempt ­ and children.

- Mark Twain's Notebook

As to the Adjective: When in doubt, strike it out.

- Pudd'nhead Wilson

Sufficient unto the day is one baby. As long as you are in your right mind don't you ever pray for twins. Twins amount to a permanent riot; and there ain't any real difference between triplets and an insurrection.

- "The Babies" speech 1879

A baby is an inestimable blessing and bother.

- Letter to Annie Webster, 1876

Suppose you were an idiot. And suppose you were a member of Congress. But I repeat myself.

- Mark Twain, a Biography

I came in with Halley's Comet in 1835. It is coming again next year (1910), and I expect to go out with it. It will be the greatest disappointment of my life if I don't go out with Halley's Comet. The Almighty has said, no doubt: "Now here are these two unaccountable freaks; they came in together, they must go out together."

- Mark Twain, a Biography

Note: Twain did, indeed, go "out" with Halley's Comet. He died in his sleep.

Dreaming of gardens

This time of year is when I hold my breath for spring (for four months).

Winter is OK - at least, I tell my kids that the cold weather keeps the criminals away. They're all down south in Tampa, Houston, or New Orleans somewhere . . . not here. They're not dumb enough to live in these cold temperatures (see definition of being dumb above).

Criminals have a low tolerance for pain, I think. Or something.

On the other hand, I can't really complain about winter like I usually do, since we've had such a nice, warm winter up until now. Darn.


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