Sunday, June 21, 2009

Fathers Day 2009 – A Tribute to My Father

James Franklin Snowden, Jr.

April 26, 1924 – May 2, 2003

James Franklin Snowden, Jr., devoted husband and Father was born April 26, 1924 in Mt Vernon, Wa. The son of James Franklin Snowden, Sr. and Beatrice McCain, he grew up on a farm in Skagit County, WA. Upon graduation from Mt. Vernon High School in 1943, he entered the Navy to support the efforts of his country during World War II. He saw action in the Pacific Theater and ended his tour in 1946 with stations in Japan and China and achieved the rank of Chief Petty Officer.

Upon his return from WWII, he married a high school sweetheart, Marilyn June Osbrink, in 1947. Together, they had four children. He briefly saw military action again when he was called up from the reserves during the Korean conflict.

After graduating in 1950, from the College of the Pacific, he began a 35 year career as a high school science and math teacher. He had a life long commitment for learning and achieved a Masters Degree from the University of California. Over his career, he taught at Tracy Union High School, El Rancho High School, Sierra High School and ended his teaching career at California High School, the last two in Whittier, CA. During this time he coached many sports but was most known for his support of Track and Football. In fact many of his athletes, students, family and friends simply called him “Coach”

Jim, as he was known to friends, spent most of his summers in his childhood home of Mt Vernon, WA where he worked for the Skagit Valley Trucking Company. After losing his first wife, Marilyn to cancer in 1980, he was fortunate enough to experience love again married Doris Mae Bogda in 1981. He was heard often to say how lucky he was to have been married to two wonderful women. This union created a family of seven children who eventually blessed them both with fourteen grandchildren.

Jim retired from full time teaching to Nevada City, CA in 1983 where he and his wife, Doris, have lived for the past 18 years. During this time, he continued to be an active participant in education. He was a substitute teacher for Nevada Union High School as well as other local schools in the district. During this time he was active in a number of local organizations such as the “Sons in Retirement”, where he was chapter President in 1994.

Jim had a special passion for horticulture and planted over 100 trees and plants on his property. He had a special interest in fruit trees, especially apple trees with several varieties growing on his property.

Jim is survived by his wife Doris, sons Jim and David daughters, Sharon and Suzanne, stepsons Bill, Richard and David and 14 grandchildren, all of whom will miss him dearly.

Services will be held at: Chapel of the Angels, 250 Race Street, Grass Valley, CA (530) 273-2446 on Saturday, May 10th, 2003.

Monday, June 15, 2009

The Death of Common Sense

Someone sent this to me several months ago. I remember reading it and chuckling.

Well with all that is happening in the world, it seems to make sense to re-run this classic. While CS has been dead for more than 10 years, if you are like me you still miss "him".

By Lori Borgman
Three yards of black fabric enshroud my computer terminal. I am mourning the passing of an old friend by the name of Common Sense.
His obituary reads as follows:
Common Sense, aka C.S., lived a long life, but died from heart failure at the brink of the millennium. No one really knows how old he was, his birth records were long ago entangled in miles and miles of bureaucratic red tape. Known affectionately to close friends as Horse Sense and Sound Thinking, he selflessly devoted himself to a life of service in homes, schools, hospitals and offices, helping folks get jobs done without a lot of fanfare, whooping and hollering. Rules and regulations and petty, frivolous lawsuits held no power over C.S.
A most reliable sage, he was credited with cultivating the ability to know when to come in out of the rain, the discovery that the early bird gets the worm and how to take the bitter with the sweet. C.S. also developed sound financial policies (don't spend more than you earn), reliable parenting strategies (the adult is in charge, not the kid) and prudent dietary plans (offset eggs and bacon with a little fiber and orange juice).
A veteran of the Industrial Revolution, the Great Depression, the Technological Revolution and the Smoking Crusades, C.S. survived sundry cultural and educational trends including disco, the men's movement, body piercing, whole language and new math.
C.S.'s health began declining in the late 1960s when he became infected with the If-It-Feels-Good, Do-It virus. In the following decades his waning strength proved no match for the ravages of overbearing federal and state rules and regulations and an oppressive tax code. C.S. was sapped of strength and the will to live as the Ten Commandments became contraband, criminals received better treatment than victims and judges stuck their noses in everything from Boy Scouts to professional baseball and golf. His deterioration accelerated as schools implemented zero-tolerance policies. Reports of 6-year-old boys charged with sexual harassment for kissing classmates, a teen suspended for taking a swig of Scope mouthwash after lunch, girls suspended for possessing Midol and an honor student expelled for having a table knife in her school lunch were more than his heart could endure.
As the end neared, doctors say C.S. drifted in and out of logic but was kept informed of developments regarding regulations on low-flow toilets and mandatory air bags. Finally, upon hearing about a government plan to ban inhalers from 14 million asthmatics due to a trace of a pollutant that may be harmful to the environment, C.S. breathed his last. Services will be at Whispering Pines Cemetery. C.S. was preceded in death by his wife, Discretion; one daughter, Responsibility; and one son, Reason. He is survived by two step-brothers, Half-Wit and Dim-Wit.
Memorial Contributions may be sent to the Institute for Rational Thought.
Farewell, Common Sense. May you rest in peace.

Note from Lori Borgman: This piece was first published March 15, 1998 in the Indianapolis Star. It has been "modified" and "edited" by others and circulated on the Internet, even sent to me several times. Imagine my surprise to see it attributed to some guy named Anonymous. If imitation is the sincerest form of flattery, I take having my work circulated on the web as a compliment.

Tuesday, June 2, 2009

Practical Things

It has been awhile since I made an entry. So this is overdue.....


  • Avoid cutting yourself when slicing vegetables by getting someone else to hold them while you chop.

  • Avoid arguments with the Mrs. about lifting the toilet seat by using the sink.

  • For high blood pressure sufferers: simply cut yourself and bleed for a few minutes, thus reducing the pressure in your veins. Remember to use a timer.

  • A mouse trap, placed on top of your alarm clock, will prevent you from rolling over and going back to sleep after you hit the snooze button.

  • If you have a bad cough, take a large dose of laxatives; then you'll be afraid to cough.You only need two tools in life - WD-40 and Duct Tape. If it doesn't move and should, use the WD-40. If it shouldn't move and does, use the duct tape.

  • Remember: Everyone seems normal until you get to know them.

  • If you can't fix it with a hammer, you've got an electrical problem.

Daily Thought: