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THE MOON by Kathy Wolfe We’ve all seen it nearly every day of our lives. This week, Tidbits is full of “bet you didn’t know that” facts about the moon. • The moon is 225,745 miles from Earth. If you were able to plan a trip there, it would be about a two-day trip on a rocket or a 625-hour ride on a 747 jet flying at 400 mph. If you could drive your car there, it would take 135 days traveling at 70 mph. • Driving around the circumference of the moon, 6,790 miles, is about equal to a trip from New York to London and back. The moon is about 27% the size of Earth, with an area of 14,658,000 square miles. That’s about 9.4 billion acres. • Temperatures on the moon vary from 273 degrees F at the hottest time of the day to -244 degrees F at night. A day on the moon from sunrise to sunrise is about 708 hours. It rotates on its axis at a speed of about 10 mph. Compare this with Earth, which rotates at about 1,000 mph. Yet both the moon and Earth complete their orbit in about the same amount of time. • The average speed at which the moon orbits the Earth is 2,287 mph. • We only see about 59% of the moon’s surface from Earth. The pattern of the moon’s rotation causes the same side to face Earth at all times. What we

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frequently call the “dark side” of the moon (that part we can’t see) should really be referred to as the “far side.” It has only been photographed from spacecraft. The surface is covered by a mantle made up of an 825-mile-thick layer of iron and magnesium-rich rock known as regolith. It’s been pounded by meteors, asteroids, and comets, which have created countless craters across its expanse. The widest craters are 140 miles in diameter and are as deep as 15,000 ft. There are mountains standing as high as 16,000 ft. It’s estimated that the moon weighs about 81 quintillion tons. • Although the moon looks round to us, it’s really egg-shaped. As we look at it, the smaller end of the egg is pointed toward us. It appears to be about the same size as the sun, but it’s actually 400 times smaller. Because the moon is 400 times closer to Earth than the sun is, the two appear about the same size. The moon is actually moving away from Earth about 1.5 inches a year. • Gravity on the moon is just 1/6 that of Earth. This means if you weigh 120 lbs. on Earth, you weigh only 20 lbs. on the moon. And if you don’t feel like dieting, remember that because of gravitational effects, you weigh just a bit less when the moon is directly overhead. • The world first saw close-up TV pictures of the moon’s surface in 1964 when images were sent back by Ranger 7, the first U.S. space probe. • In May, 1961, President John F. Kennedy stated his goal in an address to Congress of “landing a man on the moon and returning him safely to the Earth” by the end of the 1960s. The first manned spacecraft to the moon was Apollo 8 in 1968, when Frank Borman, James Lovell, and William Anders circled the moon 10 times before heading back to Earth. • The Apollo 11 crew made history in July, 1969 when they made the first landing. On July 20, Neil Armstrong became the first human to set foot on the moon. There are very few Americans unfamiliar with his famous words, “That’s one

small step for man, one giant leap for mankind.” Armstrong later reported that what he actually said was, “that’s one small step for a man…” The crew spent 21 hours and 36 minutes on the surface, with 2 hours and 36 minutes outside the

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craft, walking on the surface. The footprints of the Apollo 11 crew astronauts will remain for thousands of years, considering there is no wind or adverse weather to disturb them.

• The Apollo 11 crew collected lunar rocks weighing 842 lbs. • A total of 12 men have walked on the moon. No one has done so since December, 1972 when Eugene Cernan of the final manned mission to the moon, Apollo 17, became the last man to set foot on the lunar surface. Apollo 17 was the sixth landing of humans on the moon. • Do you know the difference between waxing and waning? During the phases of the moon’s cycle, when it appears to be getting larger, it’s called waxing, while waning is when it appears to get smaller. • If we didn’t have the moon, the oceans would have no tides. Tides rise because of the pull of the moon’s gravity. This gravity is strongest on the side of Earth nearest the moon, and it pulls up the water slightly, which is high tide. On the side of Earth farthest from the moon, the gravity is at its weakest, and the water moves a little away from the moon. • What does it take the create an eclipse? These phenomena occur only when the sun, Earth, and moon are all in a straight line and one blocks the light from another. The official term for this configuration of three celestial bodies is syzygy. A solar eclipse will occur during a new moon, when the moon is between the sun and Earth and blocks the sunlight. A lunar eclipse will occur at the time of a full moon, when Earth is between the sun and the moon, and blocks the sun’s light that would normally light up the moon. • According to folklore, if you see the slim crescent moon over your right shoulder, it’s considered good luck, while seeing it over your left shoulder is unlucky. Legend further states that if you move to a new home during a waning moon, you will never go hungry.



Most folks have never heard of Victoria Woodhull, but she made the pages of history books as the first woman to run for the office of the President of the United States. Let’s learn more about Victoria’s several other achievements. • Born into humble beginnings, Victoria’s parents ran a traveling medicine show, where her mother was a spiritualist and her father, the typical “snake oil salesman.” Victoria and her sister Tennie worked as clairvoyants and fortune tellers in the show. At age 14, Victoria contracted a serious illness and her parents consulted a 28-year-old doctor, Channing Woodhull, who would become Victoria’s husband just two months past her 15th birthday. • It soon became apparent that Dr. Woodhull was an alcoholic, morphine addict, and a womanizer, and Victoria went to work to keep them afloat. After two children, including one who was mentally disabled, Victoria divorced Woodhull 11 years later. • Victoria and Tennie were very successful as spiritual mediums and healers and made the move to New York City to capitalize on this success. Victoria married again, this time to James Blood, a former Union Army colonel in

the Civil War, who had also been the first mayor of Lawrence, Kansas. The sisters’ most famous client was railroad millionaire Cornelius Vanderbilt. In appreciation for their services, in 1870 Vanderbilt helped them open their own stock brokerage house on Wall Street, and the sisters became the first women stockbrokers in history. The company was immediately successful, patronized by wealthy widows and other women of means. • With the proceeds from the brokerage, the women established their own newspaper Woodhull and Claflin’s

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Weekly, a publication with 20,000 subscribers, which focused on women’s rights and labor reform. The paper was the first to print the English version of Karl Marx’s Communist Manifesto. • In 1872, nearly 50 years before women had the right to vote, Victoria became the first female candidate for U.S. President, nominated by the Equal Rights Party. The Party chose former slave and abolitionist leader Frederick Douglass as her running mate, although he never acknowledged the nomination. Victoria’s platform included an eight-hour workday, a graduated income tax, social welfare programs, and women’s rights. As a divorced woman, she advocated new divorce laws that gave women the right to leave unbearable marriages. In her words, “I have an inalienable constitutional and natural right to love whom I may, to love as long or as short a period as I can, to change that love every day if I please!” • Just days before the Presidential election, Woodhull, her husband, and her sister were arrested on obscenity charges for running an exposé on popular Brooklyn preacher Henry Ward Beecher. Victoria spent election day in jail, and although she was acquitted of all charges, her reputation was destroyed and her businesses went bankrupt. • Woodhull divorced her second husband in 1876, and moved to England, where she married a wealthy banker, and published a magazine called The Humanitarian for nine years. She lived out the remainder of her days in England, dying in London in 1927.



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HAM IT UP! It might be meat cut from the thigh of a pig’s hind leg, or it might be a theatrical person showing off. But ham- might also be the beginning of a number of different terms, as you’ll soon see. • The word hamadryad can refer to a variety of things. In Greek mythology, it’s a wood nymph who inhabits a tree as its spirit. The nymph only lives as long as the tree. Hamadryad is also another word for the king cobra. Did you know that a cobra bite has a mortality rate of 50-60% if left untreated? A bite can be fatal in as little as 30 minutes. • Look up and find the constellation Aries the Ram, and you’ll see Hamal, the brightest star in Aries. Hamal, along with Sheratan and Mesarthim, make up the head of the ram. Hamal is about 65.8 light years away from Earth.

• Wrestlers are familiar with the hammerlock, that hold in which one arm of the opponent is twisted and forced upward behind the back. • “To be or not to be, that is the question.” Whose question was it? This famous phrase was uttered by Prince Hamlet in Shakespeare’s play The Tragedy of Hamlet, Prince of Denmark, written around 1602. It chronicles the story of Hamlet’s plot to avenge the murder of his father King Hamlet by his brother Claudius. Hamlet questions whether it is worthwhile to stay alive when life contains so many hardships. Two of the most famous actors to portray Hamlet on stage were Junius Brutus Booth and Edwin Booth, father and brother of John Wilkes Booth who assassinated 16th U.S. president Abraham Lincoln. • We see his face nearly every day on the U.S. ten-dollar bill, but who was Alexander Hamilton? One of America’s founding fathers, Hamilton graduated from what is now Columbia University, served in the Revolutionary War, was elected to the Continental Congress, practiced law, and founded the Bank of New York. He is commemorated on our currency because he was the first U.S. Secretary

of the Treasury, and was instrumental in establishing the U.S. Mint. In 1804, after Hamilton made derogatory remarks about Vice President Aaron Burr, Burr claimed his honor had been attacked, and challenged Hamilton to a duel. Burr shot Hamilton in the lower abdomen, mortally wounding him, and Hamilton died the next day. Ironically, the dueling site, along the Hudson River at Weehawken, New Jersey, was the same site where Hamilton’s eldest son had been killed in a duel three years earlier. • The 25 species of hamsters range in size from 13.4 inches (34 cm) long to dwarf hamsters measuring 2 inches (5.5 cm) long. The Syrian species has the shortest gestation period of any placental mammal at only 16 to 18 days, yet they’ve been known to have litters of 20 pups! A hamster’s eyesight is very poor and it relies on scent to find its way. • That tiny row of hooks that connects the front and back wings of a bee is known as a hamulus. A human’s hamulus is a similar hook-like apparatus on our inner ear’s cochlea. • Are you clumsy, awkward, butterfingered, or lacking dexterity? Then you’re said to be ham-fisted.

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You’re Something Special #8

You Have More Courage Than You Realize There are a large variety of spiders in Africa and all of them are quite scary. One weekend my wife had a close encounter with one of those large spiders – it was at least as large as a saucer. She was home alone with our two toddler children in our tiny house located about 11 miles into the bush from Lusaka, Zambia. She was more than alone as I was out of town and she had no vehicle, no telephone, no electricity and she was about a quarter of a mile from the nearest neighbor with no streetlights and no paved roads. In the late afternoon she noticed a large spider dashing between the rafters of our unfinished cementblock house that had a roof but no ceiling. As daylight quickly vanished, she tried to reach the spider to kill it, but it hid in the shadows between the rafters and the roof. After sunset she lit a candle, prepared our two children for bed, and read them several bedtime stories until they nodded off to sleep, while being very much aware of her unwelcome guest hiding somewhere above her. She tucked the children in then moved cautiously through the shadows of the house into our bedroom to prepare herself for bed. Before going to bed she took one more peek into the children’s room and found them safe and fast asleep. Relieved, she returned to the bedroom and set down her candle on the small table at the side of the bed. Before blowing out the candle she glanced nervously around the dimly lit room and breathed a silent prayer for the soon arrival of two things: courage and

daylight. She knew there was a large ugly spider somewhere in her house and there was nothing she could do to find it or kill it or chase it off. So she blew out her candle, laid her head down on the pillow, and soon, in the remote darkness of the African night, she went to sleep. That’s courage. Someone once said, “Courage is fear that has said its prayers.”* You do not know what kind of courage you have deep within your soul until you face a situation that calls it forth. I believe most of us have far more courage than we may have exhibited to date. Sure you’ve seen yourself fail the courage test from time to time. You have kept silent when you should have spoken up, or you succumbed to peer-pressure when you should have walked away, or you ran and hid when you should have stood and fought. But do not let your present fears or your past failures determine the level of courage you are really capable of displaying. You’re something special. You too can face with courage the saucer-sized spiders of your own daily life. If you would like a FREE compilation of this series of Dr. Ross’ columns please send him an email requesting the “You’re Something Special Compilation” and a PDF E-book file will be emailed to you. Email: Read more by Dr. Ross at ©2013 Dr. Ronald D. Ross *Dorothy Bernard

Dr. Ross is the publisher of Tidbits of Greeley. Dr. Ross is also the Voice of Tidbits Radio on 1310KFKA Every Saturday Noon - 1pm. He is available to speak at your service club or other event. Dr. Ross posts this blog each week on To contact him email: or call 970.475.4829.

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By JoAnn Derson • To give stuffed animals new life, wipe clean with a damp rag, then fluff in the dryer for 10 minutes with a fabric softener sheet. • “Twice a year I like to clean out clutter and get rid of the things I no longer need. One thing that has really helped is to schedule a charity pickup for the morning after I have a yard sale or tag sale. Then, anything that hasn’t sold gets packed up and goes directly to charity the next day. I can’t put it off, so I don’t end up secondguessing my decision to get rid of things.” -M.S. in Alabama. • “Save pieces of broken crayons to make colorful sun catchers. Just place crayon shavings between two pieces of waxed craft paper and iron to create a colorful sheet you can cut shapes from. You can find explicit directions for this in most craft books or online.” -- V.E.A. in Colorado. • Denture tablets are great for cleaning tough stains in the toilet bowl. Just drop a couple in the bowl and let it sit overnight before flushing. • “Popsicle sticks can be used to label herbs in a flowerpot garden. Mine are on my windowsill, so I don’t have a lot of space. The Popsicle sticks take up barely any room in the pot and they are basically free.” -- M.L. in Texas. 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 (c) 2013 King Features Synd., Inc.

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Your choice for answers to the following questions are: Ronald Reagan, George Bush (41), Bill Clinton, or George W. Bush (43) 1. Which president signed into law making Martin Luther King, Jr.’s birthday a national holiday? 2. Which president extended the Voting Rights Act for an unprecedented twenty-five years? 3. Which president was the first to appoint a woman to the United States Supreme Court? Bonus question: What is the name of the appointee? 4. Which president was the first to appoint an AfricanAmerican as National Security Adviser? Bonus question: What is the name of the appointee? 5. Which president was the first to appoint an AfricanAmerican as Secretary of State? Bonus question: What is the name of the appointee? 6. Which president was the first to appoint an AfricanAmerican woman as National Security Adviser? Bonus question: What is the name of the appointee? 7. The NAACP attempted to link this presidential candidate to the dragging death of a black man named James Byrd in Texas. Which one? 8. Which president used the Columbine massacre to promote gun control legislation? 9. Which president was in power when Hispanic-owned businesses soared by 81 percent? 10. Which president vetoed welfare reform bills twice before eventually signing one into law? 11. Which president bombed Libya in response to the killing of Americans at a West German discotheque? 12. Which president went to war against Iraq because they invaded their neighbor, Kuwait? 13. Who was president when the World Trade Center was bombed by Muslim extremists? 14. Who was president when eighteen American troops were killed in a savage firefight in Somalia and the body of one American was dragged through the streets of Mogadishu as the Somali’s cheered? 15. Who was president when Osama bin Laden told ABC news: “The youth…realized more than before that the American soldier was a paper tiger and after a few blows ran in defeat”? 16. Who was president when a U.S. Air Force housing complex in Saudi Arabia was bombed by Muslim extremists? 17. Which president threatened to bomb Iraq, but called it off when the United Nations said no? 18. Who was president when U.S. Embassies in Kenya and Tanzania were bombed by Muslim extremists? 19. Which president ordered an attack against Serbian forces that were fighting Islamic fanatics? 20. Which president won two wars against countries that harbored Muslim fanatics, captured Saddam Hussein, immobilized Osama bin Laden, destroyed al-Qaida’s base, and begun to create the only functioning democracy in the Middle East other than Israel?

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1. Ronald Reagan 2. Ronald Reagan 3. Ronald Reagan, Ruth Bader Ginsberg 4. Ronald Reagan, Colin Powell 5. George W. Bush, Colin Powell 6. George W. Bush, Condolezza Rice 7. George W. Bush 8. Bill Clinton 9. Ronald Regan 10. Bill Clinton 11. Ronald Reagan 12. George Bush 13. Bill Clinton 14. Bill Clinton 15. Bill Clinton 16. Bill Clinton (June, 1996) 17. Bill Clinton (February, 1998) 18. Bill Clinton (August 7, 1998) 19. Bill Clinton (1999) 20. George W. Bush


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Answers on back page!

By Samantha Weaver • It was the ever-proper Emily Post who made the following sage observation: “Manners are a sensitive awareness of the feelings of others. If you have that awareness, you have good manners, no matter what fork you use.” • During the Dark Ages in Europe, it was a common belief that the soul of the first person to be buried in a new graveyard would belong to the devil. • If you’re planning a trip to Washington state anytime soon, you might want to head to Olympic National Park and take the Spruce Railroad Trail up to Lake Crescent, a 600-foot deep mountain lake. It has a rather spooky history, with Bigfoot sightings and numerous accounts of ghosts and inexplicable sounds in the nearby woods. The native Kallam Indians refused to fish in the lake for fear of stirring up the evil spirits that resided there. Lake Crescent also is the setting for the Lady of the Lake. It seems that in 1940, two local fishermen (not afraid of evil spirits, it seems) found a body there. It turned out to be the remains of one Hallie Illingworth, a waitress who had disappeared in 1937. Her husband had murdered her, weighted her body down and disposed of it in the depths of the lake. But it was those very depths -- or, more accurately, the cold water in those depths -- that preserved the body almost perfectly and made identification possible three years after her death. • Those who study such things say that 40 percent of all modern Chinese people are descended from just three men (dubbed “super-grandfathers”) during the Neolithic period. *** Thought for the Day: “In the United States there is more space where nobody is than where anybody is. That’s what makes America what it is.” -- Gertrude Stein (c) 2013 King Features Synd., Inc.

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Tidbits of Greeley, Centerra & Loveland • Carlos told his wife he wanted a guitar to play while sitting in the Jacuzzi. “The next day she bought him an electric guitar.” • Two small county judges both got arrested for speeding on the same day. Rather than call the state Supreme Court for a visiting judge, each agreed to hear the other’s case.

Airlines Humor • An airplane encountered some turbulence, it started juddering and rocking noticeably from side to side. The flight crew wheeled out the drinks cart to keep the passengers calm. The attendant asked a business man “Would you like a drink? “Why not?” he replied unkindly “I’ll have whatever the pilot’s been having. • It was dinner time on a British Airways flight from London to New York. As the flight attendant moved down the plane, she asked one of the passengers: “Would you like dinner?” “What are my choices?” asked the passenger. “Yes or No,” replied the attendant A guy called a budget airline to book a flight. The operator asked: “How many people area traveling? “How should I know?” said the man. “It’s your plane!”

Some Good Clean Jokes! • A guy was walking along the street when he saw a crowd of people running towards him. He stopped one of the runners and asked: “What’s happening?” The runner replied breathlessly: “A lion has escaped from the zoo.” “Oh my, which way is it heading?” “Well you don’t think we are chasing it, do you?” The sergeant-major growled at the young soldier: “I didn’t see you at camouflage training this morning.” “Thank you very much, sir.” • A couple of terrorist were making letter bombs. After they had finished, one said: “Do you think I put enough explosive in this envelope? “I don’t know,” said the other. “Open it and see.” “But it will explode.” “Don’t be stupid! It’s not addressed to you! • A wife got so mad at her husband she packed his bags and told him to get out. As he walked to the door she yelled, “I hope you die a long, slow, painful death.” He turned around and said, “So, you want me to stay?” • A group of doctors were out duck hunting, when a large bird flew overhead. The family doctor raised his gun to shoot, but then lowered his gun saying “I am not sure that is a duck.” The Psychiatrist raised his gun, but then lowered it again saying “I know it’s a duck, but I’m not sure that it knows it’s a duck.” The surgeon raises his gun and blasts the bird out of the sky. He turns to the pathologist and says “Go see if that was a duck.”

The first judge took the bench while the second stood at the defendant’s table, and admitted his guilt. The sentencing judge immediately suspended both the fine and costs. They switched places. The second judge admitted that he was speeding, too. Thereupon the first judge immediately fined him $250 and ordered him to pay court costs. The second judge was furious. “I suspended your fine and costs, but you threw the book at me!”, he fumed. The first judge looked at him and replied, “This is the second such case we’ve had in here today. Someone has to get tough about all this speeding!”

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Greeley tidbits issue 904 11 05 13  

Tidbits tells you interesting stuff about the moon! Check it out.

Greeley tidbits issue 904 11 05 13  

Tidbits tells you interesting stuff about the moon! Check it out.