Barbara Gelling: ‘I recently received a beautiful signed letter from George Bush, complete with a lovely gold embossed letterhead, congratulating me on my 106th birthday. He and Laura noted that with ‘wisdom and experience, you continue to serve as a role model for future generations.’ The only problem is that I am currently 58 years old. If they would only send me retroactive Social Security payments!’

☞ My guess: On some form that asked your birth year – thinking it was no one’s business – you entered ’00’ or chose 1900. The RNC bought that data and, guess what: you’re 106.


Bob Fyfe: ‘You wrote of their ability ‘to turn heat into electricity with no moving parts.’ Actually, the ability to turn heat into electricity was discovered in 1821 by Thomas Johann Seebeck. The opposite effect, turning electricity into a temperature differential (hot and cold) with no moving parts (Jean Peltier, 1834) is widely used in fiber optic systems today. The claim Borealis makes with Power Chips(TM) and Cool Chips(TM) is not that they can do this marvelous trick (many people can) but rather that they do it more efficiently than anyone else. That’s a big difference for someone who is considering investing in the company (with money that they can truly afford to lose, of course). Incidentally, the really, really smart people that I’ve shown Cool Chips™ information to have said that they believe the company is on to something.”

☞ Oh, please God.


By Alan Farago
Special to the Orlando Sentinel
March 1, 2006

I want to pitch you a new television concept.

Three celebrity judges audition talented kids around the nation, reaching a final decision on the best of the best. We broadcast the selection process and fly the finalists to a fabulous stage in Hollywood, where they compete in elimination rounds until a winner emerges.

You’re thinking: Haven’t I seen a show like that? No, you haven’t. My show will be called American Idol: Save the Planet.

Here is the difference with the version that is attracting 30 million viewers a week: In the new show, the young people will not be singing as it is conventionally understood. Instead, they will compete for our attention with ideas and inspiration to safeguard our democracy and freedom. . . .


Jim Petersen: “Garrison Keillor’s Sunday column is an insightful essay that, for the first time for me, explains why our political leadership is flawed. And, Keillor’s writing style is magnificent.” [Executive summary: All presidential candidates must have served two years in the military – even if they enlist late in the game.]


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