Somber anniversary We’ve just come through the eighth anniversary of 9/11. Osama Bin Laden is still at large, and the war in Afghanistan goes on. Hope springs eternal: maybe the coming year will bring good news. Poor value? The President’s recent speech to Congress on his plan for health care reform contained many specifics. We needed that, but what will happen now? Over the centuries, our two-party system has worked. Too bad the health care debate has gone so far off track. The issue is extremely complicated; the number of people who really understand it would probably fit on the head of a pin. That makes exaggerations and outright lies easier to pull off. The one thing that seems easy to understand is the need for change. As it is, the U.S. has the highest-priced health care system in the world. Despite this, according to the World Health Organization, 27 nations have a better healthy life expectancy than we do. How can this be? Is it inefficiency? Greed in the American health care industry? Something else? I wish we had more facts and less partisan rhetoric about such an important issue. “Doctor will see you now” Continued from last week: More (supposedly) actual notes in patients’ hospital records: 1.She is numb from her toes down. 2. While in ER, she was examined, x-rated and sent home. 3. Skin: somewhat pale but present. 4. Rectal examination revealed a normal size thyroid. 5. The lab test indicated abnormal lover function. 6. I saw your patient today, who is still under our car for physical therapy. 7. The skin was moist and dry. 8. Occasional, constant infrequent headaches. 9. Patient had waffles for breakfast and anorexia for lunch. 10.Patient has two teenage children, but no other abnormalities. Careers A second-grade teacher introduced a career unit to her class by asking students what their parents did for a living. “Tim, you go first,” she said. “What does your mother do all day?” Tim stood up and proudly said, “She’s a doctor.” “Thank you, Tim,” said the teacher. “How about you, Amy?” Amy shyly stood up and said, “My father is a mailman.” “That’s wonderful, Amy,” said the teacher. “What about your father, Billy?” Billy proudly announced, “My dad murders people, steals from […]
Michigan Residential Energy Credit to have positive effect I don’t consider myself a superstitious person. I don’t really believe in omens. However, I do pay attention to events as they occur, draw conclusions from those events, and base my actions on those conclusions. For example, over the Labor Day weekend, Deb and I camped along with her brother, Don’s family, at Muskegon State Park. What a wonderful weekend and a nice facility. Don and I salmon fish. The park has an excellent place to moor the boat near the channel. It took about 20 minutes from the time we left the trailers to the time we dropped a line in the water. We caught some fish over the weekend. Don and Renae left Monday, but Deb and I stayed over to Tuesday, so I planned to troll carefully up and down the channel Tuesday morning for an hour or two before loading up the boat and heading home. About 6:30 a.m., I went down to the beach to wade the 100 feet or so out to the boat. As I approached the beach, I was surprised to see the boat sitting within a few feet of the shore—not good. My mooring set-up had broken loose. It’s a good thing I had thrown an anchor out to help stabilize the rear end. That anchor kept the boat from totally washing up on the shore, and that would have been a disaster. This is one of those times when you analyze the situation and decide whether it’s a good omen or a bad omen. I was either being given the red carpet treatment—I didn’t even have to get my feet wet to jump into the boat and the fishing was probably going to be fantastic—or the mooring breaking loose was telling me that I shouldn’t go out fishing by myself because some further bad thing was going to happen. Not wanting to tempt fate, I chose to not go fishing. I sat in the boat, drank my coffee, watched a beautiful sunrise, and saw a few people in the channel catch fish. About 8 a.m., I walked back to the trailer and told Deb the story. She wasn’t all that sure about me going fishing by myself […]
The 2009 kindergarten graduates of Our Lady of Consolation, who planted cucumbers, beans, carrots and peas this past spring, have donated the plants to the God’s Kitchen garden in Grand Rapids. The produce from the plants were used to feed those in need. This Thursday, Sept. 17, the fruits of their labor come to Rockford to feed those in need in our area. God’s Kitchen North will be located at Our Lady of Consolation Family Center every Thursday evening at 6 p.m. to help families in need of a meal.
City to flush hydrants The City of Rockford will be conducting the annual fall Hydrant Flushing and Maintenance Program beginning Monday, Sept. 21, 2009. This process will be completed by Oct. 2, 2009. During this time, you may notice an occasional decrease in water pressure and possibly some slight cloudiness in the water. Most residents will see no change in their water supply. If you should notice a change in the appearance of your water, merely let the water run until it clears, usually within several minutes. There is no cause for concern with respect to the safety of your water supply, and the City performs this service twice a year to maintain a safe, reliable and abundant supply of water for residents. This program also ensures that the fire hydrants in the City are operating correctly and available for use in an emergency. Should you have any questions or concerns, please contact Dennis Brinks at the City of Rockford at (616) 866-0560.
Rockford photographer discusses elements of professional portraits by MICHELLE WISE owner, Wise Photography So how’s business? How have digital cameras affected the market for the professional photographer? Sure, I get the phone call once in a great while: “We’re canceling our aappointment because we’re trying to save money,” or “We’re going to give our cousin Fred a shot at taking our senior pictures. We’ll call you if it doesn’t work out.” A phone call or two like this doesn’t get me down, it makes me stand up and be a more excellent photographer. It also gets me motivated to educate. If the average person doesn’t know what a professional can do for them, they don’t know what they are missing. There are so many elements to consider when making a professional portrait. Here are some factors to consider when making a portrait: • composition, color and design; • direction, quality and color of lighting; • personality, attitude and experience of the photographer and the model; • aperture, shutter speed and ISO settings; • direction, angle and placement of the camera position to the model; • focal length of lens and how it affects distortion of the image or background compression. Notice that I haven’t mentioned what type of camera or how many megapixels you should have. Having a good keyboard doesn’t mean that you’ll write good books. Many years back, I got a chance to fine tune one of these elements. A man was arguing with his son in my front lobby—to say it was a heated argument was a great understatement. The father stormed into the camera room and pointed his finger at me and shouted, “And we’re not buying pictures from you unless he smiles,” and slammed the door on the way out. I stood there shocked and amazed at what just had happened and thought, “How in the world am I going to get that to happen?” I told the boy I would give him some time, and I left him alone and felt so bad for him. I didn’t even care if I was able to do his pictures at this point; I just wanted his situation to change. A good five minutes passed by and I came back and […]