Louise Carroll: New year brings new random thoughts – Ellwood City Ledger

It’s a new year and I have lots of new thoughts in my random thoughts folder so I am ready to share.
∙ Jan. 5 was National Bird Day, a holiday to raise awareness of the plight of birds. Birds play an essential role in rebuilding and sustaining healthy ecosystems, but one in eight bird species is facing extinction due to habitat loss. Google to find out who you can help.
∙ Sandy Spielvogel Bieselt commented on Sister Joanne’s word lupper, which means between lunch and supper. Sandy wrote, “A very good friend of mine calls it linner which is between lunch and dinner.”
So you can choose to lupper or linner, whatever suits you best.
∙ “Use the talents you possess, for the woods would be a very silent place if no birds sang except the best.” Henry van Dyke, poet, 1852-1933.
∙ In the “Hottest Heads of State” by J.D. and Kate Dobson, I learned that John Quincy Adams, son of President John Adams, was the first president to wear pants. Look at pictures and you will see that the presidents before him wore breeches that just covered their knees.
∙ “It is useless to attempt to reason a man out of a thing he was never reasoned into,” Jonathan Swift, 1667-1745.
∙ I thought Portuguese Man O’War was a jellyfish. I learned it stings like jellyfish and resemble them because of their shape and tentacles, but they are not jellyfish. Man O’War is a type of hydrozoan comprised of many animals living together in a colony. They sail the ocean like old Portuguese sailing ships blown by the wind. I don’t know what the big scientific-sounding word means, but now I know it’s not a jellyfish.
∙ “We are so vain that we even care for the opinion of those we don’t care for,” Marie von Ebner-Eschenbach, writer, 1830-1916.
∙ The recent Ellwood historical society monthly newsletter had an article about the USS Pueblo being seized by North Korea in 1965, and the story included information about seaman Robert Hill, Jr. a 1966 Lincoln High School graduate. If you want the rest of the story, you have to get the newsletter. Bob Morabito, who wrote the story, commented to me, “What always bothered me about the Pueblo is that it is still in North Korea and used as a museum. We actually had an opportunity to take it back when they moved it from Wonson to Pyongyang, but the president, understandably, would not authorize the operation. Maybe someday.”
∙ “We all have our time machines. Some take us back, they’re called memories. Some take us forward, they’re called dreams,” Jeremy Irons, actor, born in 1948.
∙ I like words that sound like what they mean. Folkmoot is a great example. It means a general assembly of the people of a town, city or county. Yes, folkmoot is close enough to folk meet, which is what it is.
∙ The ocean represents 99 percent of the Earth’s habitable space, powers the internet with undersea cables and is full of 20 million tons of gold and it produces half the world’s oxygen.
∙ Labrador retrievers love to fetch. When Don and I moved to the farm on Snake Run Road, we got a chocolate lab and Don named her Siren because on the farm you need a siren to keep you alert. We called her Si and like all labs she loved to fetch. I remember coming home one day and Si was so excited she pulled one of my potted plants out of its pot and brought it to me. I couldn’t be angry. I just stuck it back in the pot and it grew.
∙ “Every one of us is precious in the cosmic perspective. If a human disagrees with you, let him live. In a hundred billion galaxies, you will not find another,” Carl Sagan, astronomer and writer, 1934-1996.
∙ Only one in 3,000 calico cats are males.
∙ “When the Judgment Day comes civilization will have an alibi, “I never took a human life, I only sold the fellow the gun to take it with,” Will Rogers, 1879-1935.
∙ We could learn a lot from crayons. Some are sharp, some are pretty and some are dull. Some have weird names and all are different colors, but they all have to live in the same box.
∙ “When I despair, I remember that all through history, the way of truth and love has always won. There have been murderers and tyrants, and for a time they can seem invincible. But in the end they always fall, Think of it, always.” Mohandas Karamchand Gandhi, 1869-1948.