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Readers Weekly Nationwide!


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January 24–30, 2010

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Skiing, snowboarding and other winter sports help those living in cold climates enjoy the winter months. Even if you live in a warm area, come with Tidbits as we go on a downhill slide! s Skiing has been around since, literally, the stone ages. Evidence of skiing in the cold climates of Northern Russia and Scandinavia has been found that shows the ingenuity of people for transportation and hunting. s So, if you are wondering which came first, Alpine or Nordic skiing? It would have to be Nordic. For you flatlanders, Nordic is crosscountry skiing, much like walking except your shoes are skis; Alpine is when you are heading downhill on a mountain! Skis were developed to help people move across the snow on flat surfaces. Later, the “Alpine mode� was introduced for sliding down mountainsides. s The first winter Olympics, held in 1924 in Chamonix, France, included ski jumping, cross-country skiing and Nordic combined skiing. American Anders Haugen, originally from Norway, was the oldest Olympian there at age 35. He competed in ski jumping, but was not awarded his bronze medal until 50 years later! A scoring error was found by a Norwegian sports historian in 1974. s Skiing for sport came about in the early 1700s in Norway. The Telemark and Christiana (the Christie) turns were started in the Telemark area of Norway as methods for controlling speed on downhill descents. s Norwegian Sondre Norheim is considered the father of Telemark skiing. In the late 1800s when skiing was becoming a form of recreation, he popularized the style of turn where one ski is in (continued on page 4) WANT TO RUN YOUR OWN BUSINESS?

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Prescription Drugs Senior News Line and the Medicare Gap by Matilda Charles

Š 2010 King Features Synd., Inc.

Here’s a scary thought: The more prescription drugs we take, the less likely we are to remember to take them. More than half of us forget to take our medications now and then. And 25 percent of us over age 65 are taking between 10 and 19 pills every day. So says a recent survey done for Medco Health Solutions by Kelton Research. Here are some more facts that came out of the survey: • Those of us taking five or more drugs (40 percent of seniors) wonder how we’ll pay for them. • One-third of us taking five or more drugs can’t name all the medications we’re taking. • The biggest issue seems to be the Medicare Doughnut Hole. Sixty percent of us on Medicare are worried about entering into that period of time where Medicare doesn’t pay for any drugs until we’ve spent thousands out of pocket and reached a higher threshold. Figuring out how quickly we’ll reach the “gapâ€? period can be confusing. Here’s how to remember: The full

amount of the prescription counts toward the total, not just the amount that’s left over after you pay your copay portion. Sometimes we try to switch to generics or get free samples. Many of us even ask our doctors if we can take less of a certain drug. Still, more than 40 percent of us reach that “gap� period in the middle of the year. There are those that say you can save money by buying prescriptions on the Internet, but it sounds risky. I’d rather deal with a local pharmacist who knows me and has all my records at hand in case of a drug interaction. Ask your pharmacist to help you calculate your actual numbers if you think you’re approaching the Doughnut Hole gap. Matilda Charles regrets that she cannot personally answer reader questions, but will incorporate them into her column whenever possible. Write to her in care of King Features Weekly Service, P.O. Box 536475, Orlando, FL 32853-6475, or send e-mail to


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TOP TEN VIDEO, DVD as of January 16, 2010 Top 10 Video Rentals   1. District 9 (R) Jason Cope   2. The Hangover (R) Bradley Cooper   3. All About Steve (PG-13) Sandra Bullock   4. Inglourious Basterds (R) Brad Pitt   5. (500) Days of Summer (PG-13) Zooey Deschanel   6. Public Enemies (R) Johnny Depp   7. Beyond A Reasonable Doubt (PG-13) Michael Douglas   8. Julie & Julia (PG-13) Meryl Streep   9. Four Christmases (PG-13) Vince Vaughn 10. Night at the Museum: Battle of the Smithsonian (PG) Ben Stiller

Top 10 DVD Sales   1. The Hangover (R) (Warner)   2. District 9 (R) (Sony)   3. Harry Potter and the Half-Blood Prince (PG) (Warner)   4. Inglourious Basterds (R) (Universal)   5. Up (PG) (Buena Vista)   6. Family Guy: Something, Something, Something Dark Side (NR) (20th Century Fox)   7. G-Force (PG) (Buena Vista)   8. Star Trek (PG-13) (Paramount)   9. Night at the Museum: Battle of The Smithsonian (PG) (20th Century Fox) 10. Julie & Julia (PG-13) (Sony) Š 2010 King Features Synd., Inc.

“I think the biggest mistake most people make when they pick their first job is they don’t worry enough about whether they’ll love the work, and they worry more about whether it’s good experience.� — Steve Ballmer

By Samantha Weaver

z It was American political scientist, economist, psychologist and professor Herbert Simon who made the following sage observation: “What information consumes is rather obvious: It consumes the attention of its recipients. Hence a wealth of information creates a poverty of attention, and a need to allocate that attention efficiently among the overabundance of information sources that might consume it.� z Those who study such things claim that the act of licking a stamp burns one-tenth of a calorie. z The shortest song in the world is “You Suffer,� recorded in 1986 by the British band Napalm Death. It lasts precisely 1.316 seconds. z Stanley Mason was an inventor who really got around, in a manner of speaking. In addition to coming up with the idea for the granola bar, he also created the squeezable ketchup bottle, the disposable diaper, heated pizza boxes and the dental floss dispenser.

z There are more Polish people living in Chicago than in any city on Earth except for Warsaw, Poland’s capital. z You might be surprised to learn that the most dangerous profession in the country — in terms of the percentage of people holding that profession who have been killed — isn’t firefighter or police officer, it’s president of the United States. A total of 9 percent of our presidents have been assassinated. z Studiers of statistics say that in any random group of 23 people, the chances that at least two of them share a birthday is more than 50 percent. z In the Commonwealth of Virginia, a statute contained within what’s known as the Code of 1930 prohibits bribery or corruption by anyone other than a political candidate. Š 2010 King Features Synd., Inc.

Laughs Question: What is the difference between a munical bond and a ski bum? Answer: A municipal bond will   eventually mature and make money!   (A little background information for readers who’ve never been skiing: Ski bums are the people, mostly male, who want to ski all winter and don’t have   much money to pay for their habit!)

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z “Keep several address labels with you in case you need to fill out forms or for when you need to leave an item for repair. If it’s possible, you can put a sticker on the item. That way, it will not be misplaced so easily.” — R.I. in Alabama z Be sure to check your pets’ feet this time of year. Pads can crack from cold weather, and they can get rashes from salt exposure. Treat Fluffy to a canine or feline pedicure. Wipe feet with a moist washcloth to clean, then rub in some petroleum jelly. z “I have a mesh bag that I use for my toiletries at the gym. It’s easy to carry the bag to the showers and hang it on the showerhead. Any water drips off by the time I’m done getting ready, and I can hang it right back up in my locker.” — C.C. in Oregon z To keep the plastic wrap on a covered dish when transporting it, use a wide rubber band stretched out around the dish’s mouth and over the plastic. The big rubber bands that come on broccoli are good. If you need a bigger band, cut two and tie them together. z “My children both take piano lessons. Periodically, when they practice, we will record a session. When they are feeling discouraged, we can listen to earlier sessions to see how much progress they’ve made. As a bonus, since we’ve been doing this for several years, it’s very sweet to hear their voices introducing themselves and the bit that they are practicing.” — M. in Indiana z If you have a cast on an arm or a leg, here’s a great piece of advice: Cut off a leg portion of a pair of nylon stockings (pantyhose) and put it over the cast. Clothing will slip right over the nylon, and you can pull it off and save it for next time. Send your tips to Now Here’s a Tip, c/o King Features Weekly Service, P.O. Box 536475, Orlando, FL 32853-6475 or e-mail JoAnn at © 2010 King Features Synd., Inc.

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Shepherd Wants Food All to Herself By Sam Mazzotta DEAR PAW’S CORNER: We have two dogs: a German shepherd, Brutus, whom we’ve had since he was a puppy, and a Belgian shepherd, Sheeba, whom we adopted from a shelter. Both dogs have their own set of dishes for water and food. The problem is that Sheeba guards both food dishes and won’t let Brutus eat. We have to call Brutus over, and even then, it looks like he is sneaking to eat his own food. We know Sheeba came from a breeder who had many dogs, which is why she probably had to hoard her own food. I think that habit was brought over, but I don’t know how to break it. Any advice? — Irena H. DEAR IRENA: Your hunch about Sheeba may be right. In an environment where she had to compete with many dogs, she intimidated other dogs in order to get her share. She’s clearly taken the dominant role over Brutus in the household. It also sounds like she does obey your commands to come away from the food. This is a good thing, because you can work with Sheeba to train her that guarding the food is not a desirable action. Many experts recommend that you start this

training by feeding Sheeba separately from Brutus — either at a different time, or in a different place. Keep the training positive — the goal is to help her relax and see the feeding area as a safe place. The first few times, place her empty food dish in front of her. After she’s investigated it, approach the dish (from Sheeba’s side, not directly at her) with a scoop of food. Speak soothingly and encouragingly the entire time. Whenever Sheeba demonstrates a desirable action — staying relaxed, not getting tense or guarding food from you — place a small treat in the food dish. When she is completely comfortable eating with humans nearby, gradually bring Brutus back into the mix, with the same scenario: positive reinforcement only, treats only when she stays relaxed. This may take awhile, so be patient and careful, especially when reintroducing your second dog. Send your questions to Paw’s Corner, c/o King Features Weekly Service, P.O. Box 536475, Orlando, FL 32853-6475; or e-mail them to ©2010 King Features Synd., Inc.

Page  DOWNHILL! (continued): front of the other and the heel is raised on the rear ski, with a bent knee position. There was resurgence in popularity of Telemark skiing in the 1960s when more people recognized the exercise benefits of the sport. s Telemarking is an old snow sport but have you ever seen a “Snurfer?” It was the predecessor to the snowboard. Sherman Poppen of Muskegon, Michigan came up with the fun invention for his daughters in 1965. He received a Tranny Award in 1995 for lifetime achievement in the snowboarding industry. s In the late 1970s and early 80s, Jake Burton Carpenter and Dimitrije Milovich are credited with catapulting snowboarding to the extremely popular sport that it is today. Fewer than 10% of U.S. ski resorts allowed snowboarding in 1983. By 1997, few resorts excluded it. Now accepted worldwide, it is the fastest growing winter sport in the U.S. and Canada. s You may know that the world’s first chairlift for downhill skiing was operated in Sun Valley, Idaho, but did you know that it was invented by a railroad company? This railroad company invention happened in Omaha, Nebraska, not in the mountains of the U.S., Canada or Europe. s Now, why would a railroad company invent a ski lift? Union Pacific Railroad Chairman W. A. Harriman was a visionary capitalist. During the 1930s he saw a growing interest in winter sports and wanted a ski area that the UP railroad could serve. s Harriman hired Count Felix Schaffgotsch, an Austrian skier, to find the ideal location for skiing. The Count found an area 100 miles northeast of Boise, Idaho in the winter of 1935 that he said “combines more delightful features than any place I have seen in the United States, Switzerland or Austria, for a winter sports resort.” This area became Sun Valley. s The testing of the ski lift in Omaha involved attaching the lift to the side of a truck with engineers wearing roller skates! They determined that a

Tidbits® of Hilton Head, Bluffton, and Beaufort comfortable speed to pick up and drop off skiers was four to five miles per hour (6.44-8.05 km/hr). s Harriman was not only responsible for developing the alpine skiing destination at Sun Valley, but also a premium Nordic skiing area in eastern Idaho known as Harriman State Park. The park is a former railroad ranch that has great trails for cross country skiing in winter and biking, hiking and horseback riding in warmer months. s Today, detachable chairlifts are made that go faster while in the air but slow down when skiers are getting either on or off the lift. Wouldn’t those roller skating engineers be amazed! Chairlifts exist now that can carry six people in one chair. Also, gondolas and trams have come on the scene, basically rooms suspended from cables hoisting skiers to mountain summits. The goal, of course, is to get people to the tops of mountains faster so they can slide down and do it again! s A lot of early ski enthusiasts in the U.S. and Canada had Norwegian roots. “Snowshoe” Thompson was a mailman in the high Sierra Mountains of California and Nevada who delivered the mail from 1856-1876. He didn’t wear snowshoes; rather he wore self-made cross country skis that were nearly ten feet (3 m) long.

t ALL for jus


Quite the hero in skiing history, he delivered the mail without compensation! s Now, another man credited with bringing the sport of skiing to North America is Herman “Jackrabbit” Smith-Johannsen. He started skiing in Norway at age two. After obtaining an engineering degree he became a heavy machinery salesman in Cleveland, Ohio in 1899. He made sales calls in Canada and was thrilled to find lots of snow like his native Norway! He moved his family to the Laurentian Mountain area of Quebec. He is credited with developing cross country ski trails in Canada and is the namesake for the “Jackrabbit” League, Canada’s national youth cross-country ski program. s Jackrabbit became wealthy from his sales ability but lost it all during the “Great Depression.” He said, “It was a fine experience to make a lot of money,” but “then I lost it all and that was a fine experience, too!” He started hunting and fishing for food for his family and had more time to enjoy the abilities he had learned as a child in Norway. He skied until he was 106 years old! He was inducted into Canada’s Sports Hall of Fame and returned to his native Norway before passing away at age 111.

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It makes a lot of sense and saves lots of cents to wear warm clothes, such as sweatshirts, sweatpants, socks and slippers inside your home in the winter. The thermostat can be set lower if you are dressed warmly. Also, at night, turn the heat down even more and pile on the quilts and blankets when you sleep. This is a great time to be drinking lots of hot tea and experimenting with soup receipes too!

Find the Tidbits Alligator hidden in this issue Actual Size

Enter to Win products/services from our advertisers or distributors

$25 Gift Card to Main Street Cafe Email or send postcard to Tidbits at P.O. Box 4858 with your name, phone number, ad where you found the TB Alligator and where you picked up Tidbits. (One winner drawn each month. One entry per household weekly. Must be received by 1/31/10).

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Page  A Only one major-league player in the 1940s had 100 or more extra-base hits in a season. Name him. B Name three of the five major-league players tied for most career walk-off home runs (12). C How many national championships did head coach Barry Switzer win at Oklahoma? D Which team drafted Kobe Bryant in the 1996 NBA Draft? E Who was the longest-serving European captain in NHL history? F Entering 2010, how many Formula One season titles had driver Michael Schumacher won? G To whom, other than her sister Serena, has Venus Williams lost in a Grand Slam singles final? © 2010 King Features Synd., Inc.

Elliott Sadler Returns to Ford

Elliott Sadler is trying to recover from a long slump. In 2004, he finished ninth in the Sprint (then Nextel) Cup point standings. Sadler hasn’t made the Chase since, spiraling to 13th in 2005, 22nd in ‘06, 25th in ‘07, 24th in ‘08 and 26th last year. This year Sadler, 34, returns to Ford, and though it’s part of an apparent merger with Richard Petty Motorsports, he also will return to Yates Racing. Two of his three career victories were with Yates, and all three were in Fords. “We’re building new cars, trying to get everything as prepared as we can, so when we leave to go down for the 500, we have our Vegas and Atlanta and California (next three races) cars and all the stuff done,” said Sadler. “It’s been great so far. I’m very much looking forward to getting back in a Ford. “I feel like I had a lot of success when I drove for Mr. Yates early in his engine program. I have a lot of respect for Doug Yates, what they’re doing. It’ll be neat to get back in a Ford again.…I’m

Elliott Sadler returns to Richard Yates Racing, where he’ll drive a Ford, the car brand in which he won his three career Cup victories. (John Clark/NASCAR This Week photo)

very happy about the things that we’ve learned from the Ford camp and kind of put in the things that we were already doing. We’re already a little bit more optimistic, it seems like, week by week, before we get to Daytona.” While appearing in Nashville, Tenn., at the Sprint Sound and Speed festival, Sadler paid tribute to the winner of the past four Sprint Cup

championships, Jimmie Johnson. “I have a lot of respect for him and his race team,” said Sadler, “but I don’t see them just laying down and giving up the crown to anyone. You’re going to have to go outrun them and do that week in and week out. “I’ve heard Mark Martin say many times, even being their teammate, he didn’t realize how good Jimmie and Chad (Knaus, the crew chief) were until he got on that side of the shop and got to see what they do week in and week out. “I mean, I don’t know about handicapping the sport. I’m not into that. But I’m saying right now, I would think, my opinion, he’s going to be the car you have to beat when it comes down to Homestead (final race) again.” Monte Dutton has covered ­ motorsports for The ­Gaston (N.C.) Gazette since 1993. He was named writer of the year by the National ­Motorsports Press Association in 2008. His blog ­ NASCAR This Week ( features all of his reporting on racing, roots music and life on the road. E-mail Monte at ­ © 2010 King Features Synd., Inc.


Tidbits® of Hilton Head, Bluffton, and Beaufort

Elizabeth B. Baumler

Specializing in QuickBooks for Small Businesses 301 Central Avenue, PMB 392 ● Hilton Head Island, SC 29926 Phone: (843) 681-5538 ● Fax: (843) 681-3535 ● Cell: (843) 301-5538 E-mail:

Clock Is Ticking for Homebuyers ­­The $8,000 tax credit for first-time homebuyers has

been extended, but only until the end of April. To take advantage of the credit, you must have a house under contract by that time and close within 60 days. Additionally, another category of homebuyer has been added: Those who have owned (and lived in) their current homes for at least five years may qualify for a $6,500 credit if they buy another home. If you’re ready to buy now, step one is to get yourself pre-approved. Don’t mistake “pre-qualified” for “preapproved,” because they’re not the same thing. Prequalifications are preliminary, informal “running the numbers,” and often can be done by phone. The lender at the other end will ask about your income and expenses and determine if you have the right debt-toincome ratio, and might do a fast credit check to see what your FICO score is. Pre-approval involves all of the above, with many extra steps, mostly involving showing paperwork to the lender. It’ll need to verify all your information. At the end of that process, if you’re qualified, you’ll be told that you’re pre-approved. This is the point where you ask for that pre-approval in writing. You’ll know your price range and won’t waste time on homes you can’t afford. That pre-approval also will help you when you submit an offer: The seller will know you’re serious. Additionally, you’ll likely be able to close faster as much of the paperwork will have been completed. Some caveats about buying a home in the winter: If there’s snow on the ground and the roof, it can hide a number of problems. Solution: Check Google maps satellite photos of the house. Those photos are generally taken in the fall when there’s no snow on the ground and fewer leaves on the trees to block visibility. Google maps also will show you a street view in many locations. If the house doesn’t look the same as it does now, or if you see a blue tarp on the roof, ask questions. You also can check the yards of your potential neighbors and businesses around you. Unless you know the area very well, you could discover creeks, dumps and junkyards you didn’t know were there. David Uffington regrets that he cannot personally answer reader questions, but will incorporate them into his column whenever possible. Write to him in care of King Features Weekly Service, P.O. Box 536475, Orlando, FL 32853-6475, or send e-mail to © 2010 King Features Synd., Inc.

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by Wilson Casey Is the book of Exodus in the Old or New Testament or neither? I Corinthians 13 is known as the chapter of “what�? Faith, Hope, Love, Pardon How old was Joseph when he died? 100, 110, 125, 155 What was Hosea’s wife’s name? Sarai, Elizabeth, Gomer, Martha Who was Saul’s father? Abijah, Kesh, Joshua, Ahab What’s the 8th book of the Bible (KJV)? Joshua, Judges, Ruth, I Samuel

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Local Happenings 1/22-24 30th Annual Charleston Boat Show North Charleston Civic Center. Featuring the latest models plus an extensive line of marine and fishing products. Bring five canned goods to the show for $2 off the admission of $8 for adults, $3 for kids ages 4-12 and $5 after 5p.m. Parking free. 1/29 Hilton Head Coral Society Performing at Holy Family Catholic Church, 24 Pope Ave., HHI. The Hilton Head Choral Society brings Cantus to stage, one of America’s finest all-male vocal ensembles. Tickets are $35. Call 341-3818. 1/30 Casino Night Grand Ballroom of The Westin Hilton Head Island Resort & Spa in Port Royal Plantation. 7:30-11:30 p.m. Sponsored by K&K Plumbing. Live entertainment, raffle, prizes, Pre-registration prices are $80 per couple or $45 per person. Door prices are $90 per couple or $50 per person. Proceeds benefit the Island Rec. Center’s scholarship fund & the HH High All Sports Booster Club. Call 681-7273.

Fibromyalgia, a Baffling Illness DEAR DR. DONOHUE: My 50-year-old daughter has been diagnosed with fibromyalgia. She is in a great deal of pain, and medications have provided no relief. She has been told there is no cure. Exactly what is fibromyalgia? What causes it? — E.F. ANSWER: Fibromyalgia is a baffling illness whose two principal symptoms are pain and fatigue. The pain is body-wide, on both sides and above and below the waist. For diagnosis, the pain has to have been present for three or more months. The fatigue of this condition is overwhelming, so much so that the simplest of daily tasks becomes a formidable challenge. Patients also suffer from sleep that does not refresh, and they often find it difficult to concentrate. Its cause remains a great unknown. Specific tests for fibromyalgia don’t exist. However, tender points — areas on the body where finger pressure elicits pain out of proportion to the pressure applied — aid in making a diagnosis. There are 18 such points, and for a diagnosis, 11 should be present. Other illnesses — such as rheumatoid arthritis, lupus, Sjogren’s syndrome and hepatitis, which have similar symptoms — have to be excluded, so testing for those conditions becomes part of the fibromyalgia workup.

Your daughter is right. No cure has been found, but sometimes symptoms improve on their own. Exercise is important. It sounds ridiculous to ask a person who is hurting and exhausted to exercise. At the start, exercise intensity can be modest, just walking. The goal is to extend exercise to 20 or 30 minutes of daily exercise and to pick up the tempo gradually. The Food and Drug Administration has approved three medicines to ease fibromyalgia symptoms. They are Lyrica, Cymbalta and the newest, Savella. The booklet on fibromyalgia provides more information on this baffling illness and its treatments. Readers can obtain a copy by writing: Dr. Donohue — No. 305W, Box 536475, Orlando, FL 32853-6475. Enclose a check or money order (no cash) for $4.75 U.S./$6 Canada with the recipient’s printed name and address. Please allow four weeks for delivery. i i i Dr. Donohue regrets that he is unable to answer individual letters, but he will incorporate them in his column whenever possible. Readers may write him or request an order form of available health newsletters at P.O. Box 536475, Orlando, FL 32853-6475. © 2010 King Features Synd., Inc. All Rights Reserved.

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1) Old; 2) Love; 3) 110; 4) Gomer; 5) Kesh; 6) Ruth




1. Stan Musial of the St. Louis Cardinals in 1948 (46 doubles, 18 triples, 39 home runs). 2. Jimmie Foxx, Mickey Mantle, Stan Musial, Frank Robinson and Babe Ruth. 3. Three — 1974, ‘75, ‘85. 4. The Charlotte Hornets. 5. Mats Sundin of Toronto (11 seasons). 6. Seven. 7. To Martina Hingis, in the 1997 U.S. Open.

HOCUS FOCUS DIFFERENCES 1. Math problem is different. 2. Pencil is missing. 3. Girl’s book has writing. 4. Country missing on globe. 5. Skirt is longer. 6. Door window is shorter.

Tidbits Vol. 2 Issue 2  
Tidbits Vol. 2 Issue 2  

January 24th - 30th, 2010