If some monumental event occurred yesterday, whether financial, political, or volcanic, please understand I am ignoring it only because this was written the day before yesterday. Yesterday I left to visit paradise.

If there is no column Monday, it means Broadband access is not yet working in paradise and I wasn’t able to post one.

Or – wait! Isn’t Monday a holiday? I don’t have to post one!

If there is no column Tuesday, it means I simply could not tear myself away.

LINCOLN’S WORDS

Who but me has such a wonderful readership? Monday, I made a throwaway reference to the Gettysburg Address barely one step above ‘the dog ate my homework,’ and even that elicited a serious (and worthy) response:

Ralph Mason: ‘With all due respect for the Gettysburg Address, which by itself would have established Lincoln’s reputation as an orator, let me suggest, along with a great many others, that Lincoln’s most impressive and sublime speech was his Second Inaugural. First, in a little over a paragraph he dispatches all the arguments of the apologists for the Confederacy to the dustbin where they belong. Then he embarks on a rumination on the large currents of history that culminates in the most astounding words any President has ever leveled at his own people: ‘Yet, if God wills that it continue, until all the wealth piled by the bond-man’s two hundred and fifty years of unrequited toil shall be sunk, and until every drop of blood drawn with the lash, shall be paid by another drawn with the sword, as was said three thousand years ago, so still it must be said ‘the judgments of the Lord, are true and righteous altogether.’ That statement must have hit his audience in the chest like a cannon shot after four years of our bloodiest war. But Lincoln was not done, because he had one last ‘turn’ to make. ‘With malice toward none; with charity for all; with firmness in the right, as God gives us to see the right, let us strive on to finish the work we are in; to bind up the nation’s wounds; to care for him who shall have borne the battle, and for his widow, and his orphan–to do all which may achieve and cherish a just and lasting peace, among ourselves, and with all nations.’ Read the whole thing if you haven’t recently.’

A SMOKE DETECTOR COMPROMISE

Gary Diehl: ‘Of course you should change out the smoke detector batteries twice a year. Just don’t throw those batteries away. Save them and use them up in something less critical. I keep a small box of partially used batteries from several sources and every Christmas the grandkids get something that sucks them dry. Also, a battery that barely registers a charge will still operate certain items, like a remote control, for months. Unless of course that remote is for your Tivo, in which case I give it three days.’

☞ Four, at the outside.

FOOD FOR THOUGHT

Let them eat Veggie Patch jalapeno cheddar meatless gourmet sausages. With enough ketchup, they’re not too bad. (Charles says I will eat anything.) But my real point is to get you to read this, on the environmental case for vegetarianism.

I’m not a vegetarian, but I list that way. Ms. Freston’s post makes me want to list even further. You don’t have to be ‘all vegetarian all the time’ to make an impact. Perhaps her post will make you want to move a notch or two to the left on the continuum from lettuce to lamb.

THE LAST WORD

For now, anyway. John M.: ‘Home Depot has superb CFL bulbs by N:Vision. UL listed, Energy Star rated, 8000 hour life. If you get ‘soft white’ type the light is indistinguishable from incandescents; only difference is they take about 30 seconds to get to full brightness. They only cost $10.00 for a pack of 4, and come in 60-watt and 100-watt equivalents (using only 15w and 23w, respectively). N:Vision is Home Depot’s captive brand and has gotten good reviews. If people need bulbs for lamps and fixtures that are indoors and not on dimmers, there really is no need for further research or discussion.’

☞ Lotta my readers will be grateful for that.

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