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DEATH VALLEY by Janet Spencer

Death Valley is the driest spot in the U.S. It’s also the lowest spot in the Western Hemisphere. And it is one of the hottest spots on Earth. Join Tidbits as we tour one of America’s most unusual national parks.

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It’s BIG! Death Valley National Park is the largest national park outside Alaska. The valley is about 130-140 miles long, and the valley floor averages 5 miles wide. The national park contains nearly 3.4 million acres. The state of Rhode Island could fit inside Death Valley National Park more then three times over. It’s twice the size of Delaware, and nearly the same size as Connecticut. • It’s LOW! A parking lot at a place called Badwater is 279 feet below sea level. Several miles away in a desolate salt pan, there are a few dips that are 282 feet below sea level. Death Valley is the lowest spot in the Western Hemisphere, but the Dead Sea (between Jordan and Israel) is 1,360 feet below sea level. • Only six places on earth are deeper than Death Valley, and they are all desert valleys. If these valleys received more rain, erosion would eventually fill them with sediments and they would no longer be below sea level. Also, they'd be lakes instead of valleys. turn the page for more!


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DEATH VALLEY (continued) •

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It’s HOT! The heat is partly caused by the low elevation. With every thousand feet you lose in elevation, the temperature rises by about 5 degrees F. Death Valley's topography—a deep valley sandwiched between two steep mountain ranges— also magnifies the heat. Hot air rising from the valley floor gets trapped between mountain ranges. The hot air re-circulates and gets hotter. The dryness also contributes to the heat. Death Valley has no clouds for shade, no rain for cooling, and little vegetation to stop rocks from absorbing heat all day. In turn, the heat reinforces the dryness, evaporating rain before it reaches the ground. The hottest temperature ever recorded in Death Valley was 134 F on July 13, 1913. By comparison, the hottest temperature ever recorded on Earth was 136 F, recorded in the Sahara Desert in Libya in 1922. When it comes to average highs, Death Valley beats the Sahara. In 2001, Death Valley hit 100 F or higher on 154 days in a row. It’s hit 100 F or higher in every month except November, December, January, and February. It’s hit 110 F on (coincidentally) 110 days in a row, in 1996. And it hit 120 F on 43 days in a row, in 1917. July is the hottest month on average, with a daily high of 115 F. August is second, with an average daily high of 113 F. June is third, at 109 F. In July, when the average daily high is 115 F, the daily average LOW temperature is 88 F. Things cool off in winter. In November the average daily high is 76 F. In February it's 72 F, and in January and December it's 65 F. Death Valley's official temperature is recorded at a weather station five feet above the ground. But the ground gets hotter than the air. The hottest ground temperature ever recoded in Death Valley was 201 F in 1972. The record low temperature in Death Valley is 15 F, set in 1913, which was the same year that set the record high of 134 F. Death Valley's all-time low is about the same as the all-time lows of Phoenix or Houston. It’s DRY! Why is Death Valley so hot and dry? Don Lago describes the science behind it in his book, Death Valley Trivia. The main factor is called the "rain shadow" effect. When storms come out of the Pacific Ocean and head inland, they

have to cross a series of mountain ranges, which force clouds to rise, condense, and drop their moisture. With every mountain range they cross, the clouds have less moisture left for the next one. The Sierras can get 34 feet of snow per year, but then the clouds have little moisture left for the Owens Valley just west of the Sierras; the Owens Valley gets less than 6 inches of rain per year. Clouds that make it past the Sierras then hit the Panamint Mountains and lose most of their remaining moisture. This leaves little rain for Death Valley, or for the Amargosa Range on the east side of Death Valley. While the Panamints get 15 inches of annual precipitation, the Amargosa Range gets only 3-5 inches. • The average annual rainfall in Death Valley is only 1.94 inches. By comparison, New York City receives an average of 49.64 inches of rain per year. In some years, Death Valley has recorded no rainfall at all, such as 1929 and 1953. • With so little rainfall and so much evaporation, the humidity level in Death Valley sometimes falls to 2 percent. With humidity this low, even when the temperature is a pleasant 70 F, people can become seriously dehydrated. • Even in the summer heat, people in Death Valley may not get sweaty. The human skin often remains dry. But this doesn't mean you aren't perspiring: it means that perspiration is evaporating instantly. For people from humid climates, who are accustomed to skin and clothes drenched with sweat, this can trick them into seriously underestimating how much water they are losing.

Finding Water • There is no place in Death Valley more than 15 miles away from a spring. Natives knew all the water sources in Death Valley, but prospectors and tourists have died of thirst even when springs were nearby because they didn’t know where they were. • Death Valley has over 350 seeps and springs. Some are barely large enough to keep the ground damp, but the largest, Travertine Spring, can pour out up to 2,000 gallons per minute. If Death Valley wasn't so dry, its springs would start building a lake on the valley floor. • The water that pours from these springs comes from the mountains of central Nevada. Snowmelt flows underground for hundreds of miles until water reaches the surface. This water can take thousands of years to arrive in Death Valley. This means that the tap water you are drinking in Death Valley may have fallen as rain when the Egyptian pyramids were being built.

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TOP TEN VIDEO, DVD as of Oct. 29, 2012 Top 10 Video Rentals

1. The Avengers (2012) (PG-13) Robert Downey Jr. 2. Titanic (PG-13) Leonard DiCaprio 3. Snow White and the Huntsman (PG-13) Kristen Stewart 4. Battleship (PG-13) Taylor Kitsch 5. Dark Shadows (PG-13) Johnny Depp 6. Think Like a Man (PG-13) Chris Brown 7. Madagascar 3 (PG) animated 8. The Lucky One (PG-13) Zac Efron 9. The Five-Year Engagement (R) Jason Segel 10. The Cabin in the Woods (R) Kristen Connelly

Top 10 DVD Sales

1. The Avengers (2012) (PG-13) (Disney) 2. Cinderella (G) (Disney) 3. Dark Shadows (PG-13) (Warner Bros.) 4. The Hunger Games (PG-13) (Lionsgate) 5. Snow White and the Huntsman (PG-13) (Universal) 6. People Like Us (PG-13) (Disney) 7. Beverly Hills Chihuahua 3: Viva La Fiesta! (G) (Disney) 8. How I Met Your Mother: Season 9 (NR) (Fox) 9. Sons of Anarchy: Season 4 (NR) (Fox) 10. Bond 50: Celebrating Five Decades of Bond 007 (PG/PG-13) (MGM) Source: Rentrak Corp. (c) 2012 King Features Synd., Inc.

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CELEBRITY EXTRA Q: I love MTV's original comedy "Awkward." I missed some episodes of season two. Is it on DVD yet? Also, where there be a third season? -- Amy T., via e-mail A: You're in luck on both counts. Aside from being able to watch full episodes on and, seasons one and two are available on DVD. The show has been granted a super-size season three, which will consist of 20 episodes instead of the previous 12 episodes each of the previous two seasons. Look for season three to PHOTO: Michael Fassbender premiere in summer 2013. *** Q: I just heard about the death of one of my favorite directors, Tony Scott. I couldn't find any information on the definite cause or reason for his death. Do you know what happened? -- Felix S., Vancouver, British Columbia A: The results of Tony's autopsy were recently released, with the cause of death being multiple blunt-force injuries, which were sustained when he jumped off a Los Angeles bridge on Aug. 19. The official ruling is suicide, as no foul play was suspected or discovered. There was also no evidence of an inoperable brain tumor -- as some sources were citing as the reason he killed himself -- putting to rest those rumors that his family vehemently denied from the get-go. Tony, who was 68 at the time of his death, had recently announced his intent to develop a "Top Gun" sequel, and was with Tom Cruise just days prior to his death scouting locations for the movie. There is no word yet on whether the movie will be made without Tony. *** Q: "Assassin's Creed" is one of my favorite video games, and my roommate heard that it's going to be made into a movie. Is that true? -- Douglas W., via e-mail A: Development of a big-screen version of the popular video game is moving forward, with Michael Fassbender set to star as Desmond Miles, a man who comes from a long line of assassins but tries to lie low and maintain a more common lifestyle as a bartender. Since it's still early in the development process, there's no word on co-stars or a release date. However, I can tell you that it will be shot in 3-D. *** Q: My husband and I are curious as to what happened to Lisa, who was one of the "Ice Road Truckers" on the History Channel last year. We're hoping she didn't crash. -- Bonnie and George H., via e-mail A: Lisa Kelly is alive and well, and taking a year off. Producer Thom Beers told a group of reporters: "We offered her a contract to return, and she chose not to. (We'd) love to have her, (but) she's taking a year off. The thing we liked about her more than anyone else -- she's the one person of them all who showed real fear. I wish her luck, and I wish she was back." Write to Cindy at King Features Weekly Service, P.O. Box 536475, Orlando, FL 32853-6475; or e-mail her at 2012 King Features Synd., Inc.

• Medication labels can fade, so when you get yours, put a piece of clear tape over the instructions. This way, you'll always be able to read the instructions. • "During the holidays (the height of baking season for me), I keep a large plastic saltshaker filled with flour and a bit of dry rice. The rice helps the flour to shake out without getting clumped up, and I use it to dust cake pans, rolling pins, kneading

boards, etc." -- W.F. in Canada • "One of the household cleaners I prefer comes in a spray bottle, and it's on the expensive side. I make sure to get all of the liquid out by adding some regular glass marbles to the bottle. The marbles displace the liquid, ensuring it finds the bottom of the sprayer's suction tube." -- T.H. in Mississippi • "Stack hockey pucks in the holes of a cardboard soda six-pack carrier. Tell your coach. And to keep them bouncy, store them in your freezer (as long as your mom says it's OK)." -- Eric, via e-mail

• Keep the fog off your glasses by cleaning them with shaving cream. It will prevent mist-ups when you come in from the cold. • Save your citrus peels and dry them to use for kindling in your fire. They contain flammable oils, and they smell pretty good, too. 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) 2012 King Features Synd., Inc.


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By Chris Richcreek 1. Who hit the most major-league home runs during the decade of the 1940s? 2. Two Minnesota Twins pitchers had 20-win seasons during the 1990s. Name them. 3. Who holds the NFL mark for most field goals in a season, and how many? 4. When was the last time before 2011-12 that the Indiana Hoosiers men’s basketball team started a season 10-0? 5. Name the only NHL team other than Edmonton (2010-12) to have the No. 1 overall draft pick three consecutive seasons. 6. Which was the first country to win back-to-back Euro titles in men’s soccer along with a World Cup in between. 7. Who were the world heavyweight boxing champions before and after Rocky Marciano’s 1952-56 reign?


1. Ted Williams, wit h 234. Johnny Mize was second, with 217. 2. Scott Erickson (1991) and Brad Radke (1997). 3. San Francisco’s David Akers had 44 in 2011. 4. It was 1989-90. 5. The Quebec Nordiques (1989-91). 6. Spain (2008-12). 7. Jersey Joe Walcott before, Floyd Patterson after. (c) 2012 King Features Synd., Inc.

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The Perils of Kansas ... and Danica Patrick Among my colleagues, it’s popularly believed that I am at my best, particularly as a columnist, when, uh, “all hell breaks loose.” Of course, my view isn’t objective, and I think I do pretty well regardless of the circumstances. But ... I certainly missed a great opportunity when I went off gallivanting to Texas to play music, taking a few vacation days, and passed up the crashfest at Kansas Speedway on Oct. 21. I watched most of the race on a motel television set after listening to the early stages in bits and snatches on radio. My gosh. There were times when it took half an hour to run a handful of green-flag laps. Drivers who “just don’t wreck” wrecked.

A World Without Heros I had a bout of insomnia the other night, so I went down to my office (office ... not a "man cave" ... will somebody please retire that stupid phrase already?) and picked, what I assumed, would be the most boring book in reach of my chair. It was the 1964 Annual of the Americana Encyclopedia. (For those of you wondering, encyclopedias were well-sourced books containing information about a variety of things in alphabetical order.) As I am wont to do, I flipped to the sports page. It was a fine year, 1964. Arnold Palmer won the Masters, staving off a challenge from that angry, poor dressed, up-and-comer Jack Nicklaus. A.J. Foyt won at Indy, and some guy named Cassius Clay beat Sonny Liston in a remarkable "though dull" heavyweight title fight in boxing. Oh, the article added, Clay changed his name after the fight or something silly like that. Clay, they also took time to note, admitted that his pre-fight antics were designed to drum up gate receipts. In that regard, they said Clay was similar to the year's other phenomenon, The Beatles. Clearly the "Fab 4" were just a "Fad 4" (snicker), and now let's get back to the year's classical and jazz music scene. What struck me about the article was how they really had little sense at just how By far the most amusing incident involved Danica Patrick, who apparently pronounced herself ready to deliver “the old payback.” She didn’t like the way Landon Cassill -- yes, that’s right, this was truly a Clash of the Titans -- was racing her, so, again apparently, but with very little in the way of denial, Patrick decided she’d deliver a message by spinning him out. It’s hazardous for any driver to play with such fire, but it’s absolutely a must for a driver who does decide to wreck his opponent to do so without wrecking, uh, herself. Oh, I wish I’d been there. It was apparently quite the scene. Via radio, Patrick’s veteran crew chief, Greg Zipadelli, let her know in fairly blunt language that he didn’t think much of her actions. When Patrick finally got around to talking about it, she did herself no favors. She has many virtues, but one of them isn’t being capable of freely accepting blame for her various misadventures. Patrick may prove me wrong, but her development as a stock-car racer is lagging. When a great college football player doesn’t make it in the NFL, it really doesn’t detract from what he accomplished earlier. Some people can make the transition and others

heroic Palmer, Nicklaus, Foyt, Ali, Lennon, McCartney and Harrison would go on to become (sorry, Ringo). Because the other day, I read about the fall of Lance Armstrong, and even though I wasn't really surprised to hear the news -- that he was the biggest scam in sports history and had to vacate seven Tour de France titles -- it didn't make me feel any better. Armstrong was one of the kings of sport for the millennial/generation X era. He and guys like Tiger Woods, Barry Bonds, Mark McGwire, Sammy Sosa, Roger Clemons, Mike Tyson and Floyd Mayweather. It's been all drugs, dope, drugs, addiction, violence. And there are so many I could add to that list of disappointments ... Ben Johnson, Florence Griffith Joyner, Martina Hingis. John McEnroe ... not because of performance enhancers, but because his talk show was the worst ever. These people robbed a generation of their superstars. McEnroe, in particular, robbed us of the Patty Smythe and Scandal reunion tour. There's no excuse for that. Last weekend, watching the Jets-Patriots game with my 3-year-old, we were treated to a commercial that had a ninja assassin, ostensibly fighting for America during the Revolutionary war, shoot someone in the back, throw a hatchet through someone's face and walk off a field leaving a dozen or so British soldiers dead in the snow in his wake. Who greenlights something like that? Have we all lost our minds. Thankfully ... not all of us have. Next week: the heroes. Mark Vasto is a veteran sportswriter who lives in Kansas City. (c) 2012 King Features Synd., Inc. can’t. In football, it’s a move upward. Some would claim that moving from Indy cars to NASCAR is lateral, but the difference between racing a lithe, rear-engined speedster and a heavy, fendered behemoth is considerable. Many have been unable to make that transition. As much as I missed being at Kansas, I’m dreading next season already. I have a hunch the story of Danica Patrick trying to make it in Sprint Cup is going to have many twists and turns, and most aren’t going to be pretty. *** Monte Dutton covers motorsports for The Gaston (N.C.) Gazette. E-mail Monte at (c) 2012 King Features Synd., Inc.

Danica Patrick (driving the No. 10 Impala) made a point to Landon Cassill (in the No. 83 Camry) during the Sprint Cup race at Kansas, only she got tangled in it and wrecked herself. (John Clark/NASCAR This Week photo)

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flowers, the bees flew home to their hive and both groups did a waggling dance indicating a source of pollen had been found. The bees at home evidently refused to believe that there could be flowers in the middle of the lake, because whereas lots of bees returned to harvest pollen from the flowers close to shore, almost none came to the boat in the middle of the lake.



ees are among the most intelligent of insects, and they demonstrate that in a variety of ways: • When bees find food, they communicate its location by doing a dance that signifies direction and distance to their fellow bees. One bee researcher set up two food sources near a hive. One was close to it; the other was farther away. Then he watched the dancing movements of the bees that fed at the different stations. The bees that fed at the nearby station did wagging dances; those that fed at the more distant place did circling dances. When he moved the food sources, the dances changed accordingly. He found that a bee returning from a spot 100 yards away would make 10 turns in 15 seconds, but those returning from 2 miles away would make only 3 turns in 15 seconds. If the food was in the direction of the sun, the bee danced with its head up. If it was away from the sun, the head was down. If it was at a 45-degree angle to the sun, the bee danced in a corresponding angle to the hive. • Researchers once did an interesting experiment with bees. They brought two groups of bees from their home hive to Carnegie Lake in Princeton, New Jersey. One group of bees was taken to a bunch of pollenladen flowers in a rowboat that was anchored close to shore; the other group was taken to a bunch of flowers in a rowboat way out in the middle of the lake. After sampling the

• Professor James Gould tested some bees by placing a bowl of sugar water near a beehive. After it had been discovered by the bees, he started moving it. Every few minutes he moved the dish, but each move was four times longer than the previous move. Thus, he moved it one inch, then four inches, then 16 inches and so on. Soon he was moving the dish more than 100 feet in a single jump. The bees caught on and were waiting for him when he arrived.

BEE FACTS Number of flowers a bee must visit to make one pound of honey: 2 million Number of miles flown by a hive of bees in order to make 1 pound of honey: 55,000 Amount of honey made by a worker honey bee in a lifetime: 1/12 teaspoon Average annual per capita consumption of honey: 1.1 lbs. Average speed of a honey bee: 15 mph Average number of flowers visited during a single collection trip: 50-100 Average lifespan of a worker bee: 28-35 days Average lifespan of a queen bee: 2 years Percent of the average human diet derived from insect-pollinated plants: 33% Percent of that pollination performed by honey bees: 80% Percent of the time bees spend sleeping: 0 Number of bees in a hive: up to 60,000 Percent of body weight an average bee can carry in its nectar load: 50% Number of eggs an average queen bee lays per day: 3,000 Amount of food she needs to eat daily to do so: 80 times her weight


Cranberry Graham Squares

While cranberry sauce is always appropriate, why not share this cranberry-studded recipe this season? After all, it won’t be long before these ruby delights won’t be anywhere to be found. 12 (2 1/2-inch) graham crackers 1 (4-serving) package sugar-free vanilla instant pudding mix 2/3 cup nonfat dry milk powder 1 3/4 cups water 1 (4-serving) package sugar-free vanilla cook-and-serve pudding mix 1 cup reduced-calorie cranberry juice cocktail 1 cup fresh or frozen cranberries 1 cup reduced-calorie whipped topping 1. Evenly arrange 9 graham crackers in a 9-by-9-inch cake pan. In a large bowl, combine dry instant pudding mix, dry milk powder and 1 1/4 cups water. Mix well using a wire whisk. Pour mixture evenly over graham crackers. Refrigerate while preparing cranberry sauce. 2. In a medium saucepan, combine dry cook-and-serve pudding mix, cranberry juice cocktail, remaining 1/2 cup water and cranberries. Cook over medium heat for about 5 minutes or until cranberries soften, stirring often. Remove from heat, place saucepan on a wire rack and allow to cool for 30 minutes, stirring occasionally. Evenly spoon cooled mixture over set filling. 3. Spread whipped topping evenly over cranberry mixture. Crush remaining 3 graham crackers into fine crumbs. Evenly sprinkle crumbs over top. Refrigerate for at least 1 hour. Serves 8. ¥ Each serving equals: 93 calories, 1g fat, 2g protein, 19g carb., 297mg sodium, 1g fiber; Diabetic Exchanges: 1 Starch. (c) 2012 King Features Synd., Inc.


Gingered Winter Squash Puree Serve this flavorful, healthy dish instead of mashed potatoes. 3 packages (10 to 12 ounces each) frozen pureed butternut or winter squash 3 tablespoons frozen orange-juice concentrate 3 tablespoons brown sugar 1/2 teaspoon ground ginger 1/8 teaspoon ground black pepper Thyme sprigs for garnish 1. In microwave-safe 2-quart serving bowl, place frozen squash and orange-juice concentrate. Cover bowl with lid or vented plastic wrap and cook in microwave oven on High 12 to 14 minutes or until heated through, breaking up large pieces with side of spoon and stirring once. 2. Stir in sugar and ginger. Cover and cook 1 to 2 minutes longer to blend flavors. Stir before serving. Sprinkle with pepper and garnish with thyme sprigs. ¥ Each serving: About 135 calories, 5mg sodium, 35 total carb, 3g dietary fiber, 3g protein. For thousands of triple-tested recipes, visit our website at recipefinder/. (c) 2012 Hearst Communications, Inc. All rights reserved

1. LANGUAGE: What is the meaning of the Latin prefix “demi”? 2. HISTORY: Who wrote the political book “The Prince” during the Renaissance? 3. ASTRONOMY: What phase of the moon is opposite of crescent? 4. LITERATURE: What was the real name of the author who assumed the pen name of George Orwell? 5. ART: What are the three primary colors? 6. MUSIC: What is indicated by the musical notation “estinto”? 7. GEOGRAPHY: What state lies directly east of Utah? 8. GENERAL KNOWLEDGE: What is the traditional birthstone for June? 9. MEASUREMENTS: The watt, a unit of electrical power, was named for what famous inventor? 10. ETIQUETTE: Properly speaking, who should host a wedding shower for a bride? Answers 1. Half 2. Niccolo Machiavelli 3. Gibbous 4. Eric Arthur Blair 5. Red, yellow and blue 6. So soft that it can hardly be heard 7. Colorado 8. Pearl 9. James Watt 10. A friend of the bride(c) 2012 King Features Synd., Inc.


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• There were many challenges to overcome: deep water, turbulent currents, corrosive fogs, high winds, and heavy sea traffic. Strauss asked for help from engineering visionaries Charles Ellis and Leon Moissieff, whose contributions were • Joseph Strauss was born in Cincinnati in essential in refining the design and 1870. He was short, but he nevertheless overcoming the engineering challenges. tried out for the school football team. As He then downplayed their involvement so a result, he spent several weeks recovering that he would get more of the limelight. in the infirmary, where the window in his To his credit, his insistence on rigid room offered a view of the Cincinnatisafety measures prevented many deaths Covington Bridge, which was America’s and proved that large projects could be first long-span suspension bridge. Strauss completed safely when worker’s health subsequently developed a fascination with and well-being was given a priority, which bridges. When he graduated from college was not typically the case at the time. with degrees in business and economics, He wanted people using his bridge while his commencement address presented a admiring the workers who built it; he was proposal to construct a railroad bridge horrified by the thought that wives and across the Bering Strait, linking Alaska children and parents might one day be and Russia. crossing the bridge while remembering the husbands and fathers and sons who • Strauss got a job working for a foundry died during its construction. He also where he learned the ropes of steel and instituted the policy of hiring men for the iron manufacturing, and then went to duration of the entire project in a day and work for a bridge building company. Later, age when construction workers were more he went to work for an engineering firm, typically hired on a daily basis. He wanted and then started his own engineering firm continuity among workers and did not in 1904. His specialty was drawbridges, want to be constantly training newly hired and he constructed around 400 of them. men, because the work was so dangerous. However, he dreamed of something more challenging, so when officials from • His health began to fail during the San Francisco approached him in 1919 construction, which lasted four years. He about spanning the Golden Gate Strait, was once gone from the site for a sixhe jumped at the chance, even though he month stretch, leading to rumors he’d had had never constructed a single suspension a nervous breakdown. Yet, he managed bridge. He didn’t even have a degree in to see the project through to the end, engineering. It took more than a decade and proudly walked across the completed for Strauss and city officials to convince bridge on the day it was opened to the the public that a bridge should be built. In public. Strauss died of a heart attack a the midst of the Great Depression, a city year later, at the age of 68. He is buried in bond raised the funds needed, and work Forest Lawn Cemetery, with a bas-relief of on the Golden Gate Bridge began in 1933. the bridge etched in brass mounted upon his tombstone.

Overcoming the Odds:


TOP OF THE CHARTS as of Oct. 29, 2012 Top 10 Pop Singles This Week Last Week 1. Maroon 5 No. 1 “One More Night” 2. PSY No. 2 “Gangnam Style” 3. Taylor Swift new entry “I Knew You Were Trouble” 4. fun. No. 4 “Some Nights” 5. Taylor Swift No. 5 “We Are Never Ever Getting Back Together” 6. Justin Bieber feat. Big Sean No. 7 “As Long As You Love Me” 7. Alex Clare No. 10 “Too Close” 8. Ke$ha No. 14 “Die Young” 9. Pink No. 9 “Blow Me (One Last Kiss) 10. Owl City & Carly Rae Jepsen No. 11 “Good Time” Top 10 Albums 1. Mumford & Sons No. 1 “Babel” 2. Macklemore & Ryan Lewis new entry “The Heist” 3. KISS new entry “Monster” 4. MGK new entry “Lace Up” 5. Coheed and Cambria new entry “Afterman: Ascension” 6. All Time Low new entry “Don’t Panic” 7. Barbra Streisand new entry “Release Me” 8. Pink No. 4 “The Truth About Love” 9. Ellie Goulding new entry “Halcyon” 10. Muse No. 2 “The 2nd Law” Top 10 Hot Country Singles 1. Taylor Swift No. 1 “We Are Never Ever Getting Back Together” 2. Carrie Underwood No. 3 “Blown Away” 3. Florida Georgia Line No. 6 “Cruise” 4. Hunter Hayes No. 4 “Wanted” 5. Lee Brice No. 23 “Hard To Love” 6. Jason Aldean No. 5 “Take a Little Ride” 7. Luke Bryan No. 8 “Kiss Tomorrow Goodbye” 8. Dustin Lynch No. 7 “Cowboys and Angels” 9. Taylor Swift No. 2 “Red” 10. Jake Owen No. 12 “The One That Got Away” (c) 2012 King Features Synd., Inc.

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by Samantha Weaver ¥ It was Scotsman Bertie Charles Forbes, journalist and founder of Forbes magazine, who made the following sage observation: “There is more credit and satisfaction in being a first-rate truck driver than in being a tenthrate executive.” ¥ The prospectors of 1849 might not have realized it, but you’re more likely to find a 5-carat diamond than a 1-ounce nugget of gold. ¥ You might be surprised -- and, depending on your temperament, terrified -- to learn that bats can fly at speeds up to 60 mph. Some can even reach altitudes of 10,000 feet. ¥ Coffee beans are actually seeds. The fruit of the coffee tree is called a cherry and are said to be delicious. They spoil too quickly to be marketed effectively, though, so only the seeds are used. ¥ Beverly Hills, Calif., is one of the most affluent areas of the country. It was not always such a posh locale, however; in 1920 the population was 674, and most of the land was given over to bean fields. ¥ All joking aside, those who study such things say that natural blondes tend to have more difficulty driving than those whose hair is of a darker hue -- at night, anyway. The reason? Most natural blondes also have blue eyes, which aren’t as good as brown eyes at shielding out light. This means that blondes tend to be more easily blinded by the headlights of oncoming cars. ¥ When a professional football player retires, there’s a 50-50 chance he’ll get divorced within a year. by Wilson Casey 1. Is the book of Eliab in the Old or New Testament or neither? 2. From Genesis 21, who was commander of Abimelech’s army? Benaiah, Omri, Sisera, Phichol 3. Saul consulted a medium wanting to talk to whose spirit? Goliath, Moses, Samuel, Solomon 4. Which natural disaster occurred only once in the Bible? Wind storm, Flood, Drought, Earthquake 5. Who was known as the “Weeping Prophet”? Jeremiah, Nathan, Elisha, Daniel 6. Who was the mate of Rachel? Ananias, Boaz, Jacob, Isaac ANSWERS: 1. Neither; 2. Phichol; 3. Samuel; 4. Flood; 5. Jeremiah; 6. Jacob Contact Wilson Casey at (c) 2012 King Features Synd., Inc.

¥ Everybody dreams. Those who claim that they never have dreams just don’t remember them. *** Thought for the Day: “Any frontal attack on ignorance is bound to fail, because the masses are always ready to defend their most precious possession -- their ignorance.” -- Hendrik Willem van Loon (c) 2012 King Features Synd., Inc.



Tidbits® of the Foothills

VETERANS POST by Freddy Groves

Horses for Therapy Unless you look for it, you wouldn’t suspect that research literature is full of glowing praise for using animals as therapy for wounded veterans. Whether it’s traumatic brain injury, post-traumatic stress disorder or a physical injury, horses are being used as “animal therapists” in equine-facilitated therapy. Here’s why it works: --Immediate feedback. Pull a horse’s reins one way, and it goes in that direction. Groom a horse and the blood pressure goes down. --Success with the horses increases confidence in skills that can be used in day-to-day life. --Animals don’t judge. They don’t care if their human has scars or a slower gait. They care only about the interaction with their human. --Caring for an animal can provide the steps to reconnecting on an emotional level. --Relaxation ... deep-down genuine ease and relaxation. If you think you can benefit from an animal therapy program, inquire at your VA medical center. There are 30 centers that participate in the horse therapy program. Here are a few examples: --Horses for Heroes [www.horsesforheroes. org] is a non-profit, working New Mexico ranch that provides free hands-on experiences to veterans and active-duty military who have PTSD or physical injuries. While veterans heal, they work toward the goal of training horses for future veterans who will participate

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in the program. For more info, call 505-7982535. --Injured soldiers with TBI and PTSD ride and take care of horses in the Therapeutic Riding Program near Fort Belvoir, Va. The horses and the soldiers who run the program are from the 3rd Infantry, the Old Guard. --The Lexington VA Medical Center in Kentucky has an alternative rehab program that pairs veterans with horses. Again the emphasis is on veterans with PTSD and TBI. Write to Freddy Groves in care of King Features Weekly Service, P.O. Box 536475, Orlando, FL 32853-6475, or send e-mail to (c) 2012 King Features Synd., Inc.

Remember Those Serving our Country This Holiday Season

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