Mature Life Features

Cecil Scaglione, Editor

Archive for January 2022

Followed an Old Piece of Advice . . .

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. . . and just watched the final few minutes of Sunday’s football games, each with fabulous finishes. Underdogs won — Cincy beat Kan City 27-24 and Rams beat 49ers 20 – 17.

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These two winners weren’t supposed to get through the first round of their play off runs but they’ll face each other in the Super Bowl in two weeks.

Written by Cecil Scaglione

January 31, 2022 at 3:00 am

Posted in News / Events

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Just Read a Piece . . .

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. . . son Michael sent me about the origins of February.

Way down deep is the statement that we no longer pronounce the first “r”, making it Febuary — “much like we do with ‘suh – prise’ and ‘guv – uh – nor’.” Well, I pronounce the “r”s and say February, surprise and governor.

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But where the hell did impor – d – ant come from???

Written by Cecil Scaglione

January 30, 2022 at 3:00 am

Had To Turn Down . . .

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. . . an offer for a ride the other day by a neighbor with failing eyesight. He said he had no trouble making the turn onto the street.

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“Just tell me when,” he said.

Written by Cecil Scaglione

January 29, 2022 at 3:00 am

Posted in Humor / Quote

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There’s a Gentleman . . .

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. . . living here who does all his own cooking and doesn’t eat in the dining room.

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Since the only things I can cook are toast, bacon and eggs, and corned-beef hash, I asked him how to do some pork ribs I’d picked up the day before to assuage my hunger for these delicacies. I cut the slab into three packages of five ribs each and stored two bundles in the freezer.

He told me he doesn’t like to do dishes and, after I lauded his foresight, he said use a sheet of alum foil to cover any sort of baking pan and set in a 300 degree oven for a couple of hours. Since I like ’em dry, I rubbed some salt, pepper, oregano and garlic salt on them while the oven heated, tossed them in and it all worked out. The kitchen gave me a cup of potato salad and I poured a glassful of Gatorade/cranberry juice and life was good. Next time I’ll pour a Stella Artois.

Am I now a chef? No. But I can add baked ribs to my list of can-do. And no dishes to do.

Written by Cecil Scaglione

January 27, 2022 at 3:00 am

During Flashbacks . . .

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. . . a memories-recall session I honcho a couple of times a week, we touched on what our favorite topic or quote was.

It occurred to me I really don’t have one, but I do have a prime mantra/rule-of-thumb:

“When In Doubt, Pray .”

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That doesn’t mean kneeling down and reciting catechismal writings. It just means saying “I need help” or “thanks” or “what do You what me to do” when you hit those critical corners of daily living.

Written by Cecil Scaglione

January 24, 2022 at 3:00 am

Posted in A Musing

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A Bore Is . . .

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. . . someone who drills a hole

in your patience.

Written by Cecil Scaglione

January 22, 2022 at 3:00 am

Posted in Humor / Quote

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Negotiate the Sticker Price

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It’s taken the current inflationary spiral to yank our attention onto the price of ordinary things around us we buy every day, from a gallon of gasoline to a slice of pizza.

A feeling of helplessness seems to have dropped around us as we either dig deeper into our credit-card debt or decide to bypass the purchase.

There is a way you can save a few bucks on your shopping trips. It goes under several names – negotiate, haggle, and make a lower bid are just a few. But the simple way is just ask.

Many vendors, major and minor, offer discounts to veterans and to seniors. But you usually have to ask. In many cases, such as seasonal close-out sales, shops will accept a price lower than advertised.

This is not as easy in major chains such as Target and Safeway and Home Depot, but if you ask for the store manager, you can deal directly with him or her.

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Recently, a relative was lounging around a jewelry store while his wife had a dental appointment. Several items had luxurious price tags but there were a few “deals” in one corner counter. A wrist watch caught his eye so, to pass the time and since he didn’t have a wrist watch at the time, he asked to take a closer look at it.

The sales clerk told him it was the last of a particular lot and that was why it was so cheap. The sale price was $140. That ended the conversation.

He thanked the clerk and put it back, sauntered around the store a bit more and then walked out. Seconds out of the door, the clerk called after him and asked how much he’d pay for the watch. My neighbor blurted out, “I have $100 in my pocket.” The clerk asked him to wait a minute and came back to tell him her manager would take it. 

He bought the watch and, checking its costs online when he got home, his watch was e-tailing at more than $700.

Acting like he didn’t want it cut his price without even haggling.

A nettlesome cost these days is the monthly cable/internet bill, which can get close to $300 a month if you opt for multi-cable service and high-speed internet service.

If you feel you’d like to lower the cost of your existing service, call and tell them you want to cancel your subscription. You’re likely to be connected with a company representative whose job is to keep customers and has all the latest promotional programs and fees at his or her fingertips.

Rather than complain about the lack of service for the price you’re paying, be nice. Point out you really appreciate what you’re getting but just can’t afford it on your income and budget.

You don’t have to accept the first offer. You might point out that you’re a senior and will have to shop around for a plan you can afford. And if you find one, you’d like to sign up for a long-term program so you don’t have to interrupt you service every few months.

All of this is designed to help the company rep you’re speaking with come up with the best program that suits you and keep on their list of customers.

Written by Cecil Scaglione

January 18, 2022 at 3:00 am

Posted in Finance

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Made Another Newspaper Mistake . . .

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. . . today by picking up one of the three Arizona Republics delivered daily to the bistro.

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That newsroom has three dozen reporters, plus a similar amount of editors, plus the sports department, plus a Spanish language insert staff, plus a half dozen columnists and I read through all that was pertinent in less than 10 minutes.

The most intelligent pieces were the letters to the editor. The major story from Page One was a three page obit — three full pages plus — of one of their editors who passed away.

No wonder its daily circulation is 117K, or one copy for every 40 people among the 4.6 million residents of Maricopa County. I asked everyone in the bistro who read the paper if they learned anything. They all shook their heads no.

Written by Cecil Scaglione

January 15, 2022 at 3:00 am

You’re So Pun-chy

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Some folks may not think the T-shirt proclaiming “I Put The Fun In Funeral” is humorous, but I do.

I also think puns are punny – er, funny. Good punsters are given more respect in most nations – yes, folks there are puns in other languages – than the level of appreciation witnessed here.

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A reason cited for this anti-pun phenomenon in the Land of the Free is our high level of competitiveness. A pun isn’t funny if you didn’t think of it first.

I mean, how funny do you think it is if I poke you in the ribs to get by and shout, “Make Hemmingway, the pun also rises.” It may not be too polite, but I think it’s hilarious.

They are among the tools that fashioned the Old Testament and much of Shakespeare’s works. So why should we snub them now? Perhaps it’s because punning requires an extensive knowledge of many topics and things. Whether you get it or not can be an indicator of how smart you are. In other words, a pun by someone else can make you look stupid.

While Shakespeare ranks at or very near the top of the list of all-time punsters, Mark Twain also was a practitioner. One of his that comes to mind readily is about some money being twice tainted: “T’aint yours and t’aint mine.”

Get it?

Vaudeville, radio and television comics, such as Groucho Marx, Henny Youngman and Fred Allen made a good living leaning on puns. It was one of them who said his wife went window shopping and came home with four windows.

Among Groucho’s renowned one-liners are “Time flies like an arrow, fruit flies like a banana,” “While in Africa, one morning I shot an elephant in my pajamas. How he got into my pajamas, I’ll never know,” “Why, I’d horse whip you if I had a horse,” “If you want to see a comic strip, you should see me in the shower” and “Women should be obscene and not heard.”

Puns and malaprops thrive in the same neighborhood, such as the comic pointing out that a colleague’s memory lapse was probably caused by too much Milk of Amnesia. And there’s the press agent who claimed all they had when they began making the epic Biblical movie, “Ben Hur” was “faith, hope and chariots.”

One easy one I remember from school days goes like this, “Can February March? No, but April May.” That hauled into mind the old schoolyard throwaway, “My picture wound up in jail, but it was framed.” And the laughs about the cross-eyed teacher who couldn’t control her pupils.

Included among the list of don’ts in my life is to never talk about infinity because the conversation could go on forever. I also got to thinking a few years ago that it must be confusing to be a young ant because even their uncles are ants.

As we were growing up, my sister applied for a job at the post office but they wouldn’t letter because they said only mails worked there. She got a job at a calendar factory but that didn’t last long because they fired her after she took a day off.

My brother wanted to buy a boat so I told him to look under the For Sail section in the classified ads.

There was the time I ran into my friend and when I visited him in the hospital he asked me why I didn’t miss him. He said he was sleeping like a log so I told him he’d have to start looking for a fireplace.

He also had a wife who had a photographic memory. The problem was, she never developed it.

It was after a trip to Australia (honest!) that I got some mileage out of telling people I had trouble remembering how to throw a boomerang but it usually came back to me.

I’ve always thought that becoming a vegetarian would be a big misteak. And there are health nuts trying to ground me because I drink coffee.

As I get older, I avoid funerals because they all start at or about 9 a.m. and I’m not a mourning person.

I was all set to take pictures of the fog bank the other day but I mist my chances.

And waking up this morning to write this opus was an eye-opening experience

Now you readers are going to leave but be like a good clock and come on back for seconds.


Written by Cecil Scaglione

January 13, 2022 at 3:00 am

Gardeners Are the Original Optimists . . .

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. . . because they truly believe that what you put down must rise up.

Written by Cecil Scaglione

January 11, 2022 at 3:00 am

Posted in A Musing

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