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Issue 20




Flea Market

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AMERICANS’ ADVENTURES The history of America is rife with rugged men and women who have explored and tested landscapes all over the world. Here are some of their stories. to scale an over-26,000-foot (8,000-m) mountain in winter. Along with partners from

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Tidbits® of Hoover, Pelham, Alabaster & Helena! have them too. So does just about everyone. They’re all over the world. They’re less than one-hundredth of an inch, barely visible. They don’t bite you. They feed on dead skin that has fallen off the body. They don’t crawl in and out of your mouth, as the letter writer suggested. Dust mites don’t give you any illness, although some people are allergic to them and itch when exposed to them. In a very few people, they might trigger an asthma attack. None of this has happened to you or me. I don’t think it ever will. Dust mites need high humidity to survive, around 70 percent. You can cut down on their number if you keep your room humidity lower than that. Don’t try to get rid of them. They’re part of the biological diversity that exists in our world. I don’t know if they do us any good, but they don’t do us any harm, aside from the allergy thing. Sleep in peace. I apologize for ruining a night’s sleep for you. Please don’t ask me about bedbugs. They don’t make people ill either, but they give me the creeps.

To Your Good Health By Paul G Donohue M.D.

Tiny Dust Mites Are Fact of Life DEAR DR. DONOHUE: I am 9 years old. I read what you said about dust mites. I am wondering if they can hurt me. Will they affect me in any way? Am I safe around them? One night I was snuggling my pillow pet, and my mom said, “Remember, it has dust mites.” She gave me your article. I couldn’t sleep that night, knowing that loads of dust mites were crawling around me. So tell me. Should I be afraid? What makes them go away? What will happen? -- T.M.C. ANSWER: Have no fear, T.M.C. Dust mites have not done, are not doing and will not do anything harmful to you. I

DEAR DR. DONOHUE: My husband and I have started walking every evening. It’s our way of staying in shape. I like it. My husband actually listens to what I have to say when we walk. There is one thorn in my side, however. My husband insists that I don’t walk correctly, and he is constantly giving me ways to change my walking style. It’s extremely irritating. I have been walking the way I walk since I was an infant. Is there really a special way to do so? -- R.C. ANSWER: Most people develop a walk natural for them, and there’s nothing wrong with that. Some general pointers about the proper walking style are worth incorporating into your walking pattern. Keep your head erect with eyes focused about 20 feet in front of you. Your arms should be bent at the elbow. When the right foot hits the ground, the left arm should be in front of your body, and vice versa when your left foot hits the ground. The heel of the foot should strike the ground first, and the liftoff should come from the toes. Older people tend to shorten their walking stride in an attempt to keep both feet always on the ground. This gives them more balance and stability. They should try to take a little longer stride and use their arms for balance and stability as I described above. Americans’ Adventures (continued):

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Unorthodox Technique Might Help With PTSD Meridian Tapping, also known as The Tapping Solution, is a 5,000-year-old Eastern medicine technique for releasing stresses, and now it’s claimed to help with Post Traumatic Stress Disorder. That’s a big claim, considering how serious and disabling PTSD can be. It seems simple enough: With the tips of your fingers, you tap certain spots on your face, jaw and head while stating the problem. Supposedly this releases your body’s healing energy. I normally don’t pay much attention to what I call hocuspocus cures, especially when they’re claimed to works on multiple ailments (weight loss, smoking, chronic back pain and more). But there just might be something to this for PTSD, and I’ll tell you my non-medical theory: By doing the tapping technique, you’re forcing your mind to pay attention to a set of steps you do in a specific order. This gives your mind a few minutes of letting go of the stress caused by your particular trigger.


approach are what matters more at the end of

To get an idea how this works, go to and watch the four-minute video. On that same webpage on the left is a link to get the free tapping ebook. You’ll need to give your first name (make one up if you like) and an email address (using a throwaway address is a good way to cut down on all spam). If all this technique does is genuinely reduce stress, that’s not bad. If nothing else, send for the free ebook and watch the short video and trailer. Check YouTube. com for more videos and demonstrations. While the Department of Veterans Affairs is quiet on this technique, some VA practitioners do offer tapping therapy. For further exploration, look at the Veterans Stress Project ( Under Find Help, you’ll see practitioners in the VA.


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Graduation Loose Meat Sandwiches ¥ On June 8, 632, in Saudi Arabia, Muhammad, founder of Islam, dies in the arms of Aishah, his third wife. In 610, in a cave north of Mecca, Muhammad had a vision in which he heard God command him to become the Arab prophet of the “true religion.” He began having religious revelations, which he collected as the Qur’an.

Whether your graduate is receiving a diploma from high school or college, you’ll probably want to share the special occasion with family and friends. Here’s a recipe guaranteed to head the “honor roll” of party celebration foods. By the way, if you don’t have a graduate in your family, how about hosting a party anyway and celebrate the coming of summer. You may just receive a diploma from everyone as the “hostess with the mostest.”

¥ On June 5, 1933, the United States goes off the gold standard, a monetary system in which currency is backed by gold. The Great Depression of the 1930s had frightened the public into hoarding gold. Roosevelt ordered all gold coins and gold certificates in denominations of more than $100 turned in for other money. ¥ On June 4, 1942, the Battle of Midway -- one of the most decisive U.S. victories against Japan during World War II -- begins. During the four-day sea-andair battle, the U.S. Pacific Fleet succeeded in destroying four Japanese aircraft carriers while losing only one of its own. ¥ On June 9, 1956, one of the world’s top-selling crime novelists, Patricia Cornwell, best known for her forensic pathologist character Dr. Kay Scarpetta, is born in Miami. Cornwell’s first novel, “Postmortem,” was released in 1990. ¥ On June 7, 1962, the banking institution Credit Suisse opens the first drive-through bank in Zurich, Switzerland. The drive-through featured eight glass pavilions and a sensor on the ground that activated a light trail that directed drivers to the next available bay. ¥ On June 6, 1981, more than 500 passengers are killed when their train plunges into the Baghmati River in India. The rail accident was caused by an engineer who braked too hard to keep from hitting a cow that was crossing the tracks over a bridge. Seven cars derailed into the river. ¥ On June 10, 1979, actor Paul Newman roars into second place in the 47th 24 Hours of Le Mans, the famous sports-car endurance race held annually in Le Mans, France. In 1969, Newman starred as a race-car driver in the movie “Winning,” performing many of the high-speed scenes himself without a stunt double.

Start Online Before Buying, Selling Home Spring and summer are historically the biggest times of the year for buying and selling homes. At the same time, because of the economy, if you’re in the market to buy or sell, you need a little help. The first step to a successful purchase or sale is to learn as much as you can. Two online real-estate sites, Zillow and Trulia, are good places to get not only baseline information, but to learn tricks of the trade. Some features of Zillow []:

Don’t Trash This Mail Do you read your Explanation of Benefits forms when they come in the mail? They could contain information that you need to know. The Explanation of Benefits gives the latest update on your Medicare payment status. Whenever a claim for services is filed, the information is sent to you. That’s your opportunity to verify whether the information is correct, especially the dollar amounts. Here are the things you need to note: Total Charges: These are the amounts the doctor (or hospital, if you were a patient) wants to charge. Approved Amount (which also could be called Medicare Approved or Allowed Amount): This is the dollar amount that Medicare allows your doctor to charge. Patient Responsibility: This is your portion of the bill that Medicare allows, based on your policy’s percentage. If the math is correct, so far so good, but there are other places errors could be evident. Spelling of your name and patient ID number: Someone with the same name (but a different ID number) could end up on your account. Dates of service and the name of the doctors: Did you go to that doctor on that date? Did you have the test or procedure that’s listed? Prescriptions: Did you fill a prescription on that date? Look at the cost. If someone else’s drugs are listed on your account, it might send you to the “doughnut hole” too quickly. The doughnut hole is that gap in coverage where none of your drug costs are picked up until a certain large out-of-pocket amount is paid. Keep your Explanation of Benefits to compare from one month to the next. If anything looks wrong, call Medicare at 1-800-633-4227 to report it. “Zestimate” -- a property’s valuation based on comparables and database information, which you need to know whether you’re buying or selling. The value can come in handy when comparing to an appraisal or a market analysis by a realestate agent. Inventory -- Whether there are more or less properties in your area available for sale impacts you as a buyer or a seller. More properties on the market make it easier for buyers to negotiate a price, but forces sellers to price more competitively. Make Me Move -- Potential buyers can make an offer via email. Listing -- Promote your property for free for 60 days either by yourself or through an agent. Rental -- Zillow can help determine the correct rental price for your property if you decide not to sell. Some features of Trulia []: --Search for homes by price, features and open houses -Get smartphone alerts when there is activity on properties

2 pounds extra-lean ground sirloin beef or turkey breast 1 1/2 cups finely chopped onion 2 cups diet cola 2 teaspoons parsley flakes 1/8 teaspoon black pepper 12 small hamburger buns 1. In a large skilled sprayed with butter-flavored cooking spray, brown meat and onion. Add diet cola, parsley flakes and black pepper. Mix well to combine. Lower heat and simmer for 20 minutes or until most of the moisture evaporates, stirring occasionally. 2. For each sandwich, spoon about 1/3 cup meat mixture between a hamburger bun. Serves 12.

1. Is the book of Titus in the Old or New Testament or neither? 2. From Isaiah 45, whom did God ask, “Shall the clay say to him that fashioneth it”? Gideon, Peter, Cyrus, Elijah 3. For how many days did Goliath take his stand for a man to fight him? 2, 6, 10, 40 4. From Acts 5 and 12, how many times was Peter delivered from prison by an angel? 2, 5, Dozen, 70 5. Which Psalm is a prayer of Moses, the man of God? 23, 90, 117, 150 6. Who sold his birthright for a pottage of lentils? Cain, Jacob, Esau, Able

you’re interested in. --Review school ratings, crime and business comments from those who live locally or participate in the Q&A forum. Read articles by real-estate experts on topics ranging from avoiding surprises in the buying process, to how to making springtime changes to attract buyers. Whether you’re buying or selling this year, schedule an information-only talk with a local real-estate agent. Seek professional advice in advance of taking any steps toward buying or selling. If you’re a buyer: Check your credit scores. Send for your credit reports and review them for any errors. Get prequalified so you know your price range. If you’re a seller: Make all small repairs, and do a bit of landscaping. Get multiple opinions about whether the cost of a more major project (updated kitchen or baths) will likely be recouped in your sales price. In short, gather all the information you can before you move forward.

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Tidbits® of Hoover, Pelham, Alabaster & Helena! Americans’ Adventures (continued):

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1. MUSIC: Who wrote and performed the song “Me and Julio Down by the Schoolyard”? 2. THEATER: “My Fair Lady” is a modern musical adaptation of which play? 3. GEOGRAPHY: The Palace of Versailles is located near what city? 4. PHYSICS: What is the branch of physics that deals with light? 5. LITERATURE: Who wrote “Doctor Zhivago”? 6. LANGUAGE: What is the American term for the British perambulator? 7. ROYALS: From what house did Great Britain’s King Edward VIII descend? 8. PSYCHOLOGY: What does someone fear if he or she has chronomentrophobia? 9. SCIENCE: What is an ichnite? 10. PRESIDENTS: Which U.S. president said, “The chief business of the American people is business”?

A: Sometimes online petitions work (“Friday Night Lights,” “Jericho” and “Chuck” were saved from early cancelation by rabid Internet campaigns), and sometimes they don’t. In the case of “A Gifted Man,” it didn’t; CBS decided not to renew the drama for a second season. Also on CBS’s chopping block: “CSI: Miami,” “Rob,” “Unforgettable” and “NYC 22.” Q: For the longest time, I couldn’t even find “Cougar Town” on the TV schedule, then it returned, and now I hear it’s been canceled. Is that true? -- Stacie R., St. Paul, Minn. Q: When will my favorite show, “Rizzoli & Isles,” be back with new episodes? -- Fred D., via e-mail. A: Angie Harmon and Sasha Alexander will return for their third season as Det. Jane Rizzoli and Dr. Maura Isles, respectively, on Tuesday, June 5, at 9 p.m. ET/PT. The highly rated TNT series will air 15 all-new episodes. And if you need to catch up on seasons one and two -- or just refresh your memory -- both are now available on DVD for your viewing pleasure. Q: I signed that petition you mentioned in a previous column to help keep “A Gifted Man” on the air, and I was wondering if it helped? Will CBS renew it? --Bonnie A., Norfolk, Va.

A: While it’s true that ABC has opted not to renew “Cougar Town” for a fourth season, Courteney Cox and gang will indeed be back for a new season -- TBS has picked up the series and will begin airing


new episodes in early 2013. As of now, it’s assumed that all cast members will be making the move with the show to TBS. However, Dan Byrd had already booked a role on the new untitled Louis CK sitcom pilot, and Josh Hopkins was set to star in NBC’s “Lady Friends.” Both shows will have to recast now that “Cougar Town” is going forward. “Cougar Town” is the latest project to join TBS’s growing slate of original series. In July, TBS will launch “Sullivan & Son,” a new sitcom starring comedian Steve Byrne and executive-produced by Vince Vaughn, Peter Billingsley and Rob Long. This year also will include the debut of “Wedding Band,” a new scripted comedy series starring Brian Austin Green, Harold Perrineau, Peter Cambor, Derek Miller, Melora Hardin, Jenny Wade and Kathryn Fiore. Q: Can you tell me what Ving Rhames is doing now? I haven’t seen him in anything in a while. -- Derek L., via e-mail A: Ving is all set to star in the new David E. Kelley medical drama that is slated to premiere on TNT in summer 2013. The series, called “Monday Mornings,” is based on the book by neurosurgeon and CNN chief medical correspondent Dr. Sanja Gupta, M.D. The show is set in the fictional Chelsea General Hospital in Portland, Ore., and Ving plays the hospital’s trauma chief. It also stars Alfred Molina, Jennifer Finnegan and Bill Irwin.

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Premeasuring Helps Overweight Dogs By Samantha Mazzotta

DEAR PAW’S CORNER: A have a suggestion to help owners solve their dogs’ weight problems. People tend to overfeed their dogs because their “cup” tends to just be grabbed out of a dog food bag. So their 1/2 cup, etc. tends to be more like 3/4 cup or so. I took a soft-drink carton holding 24 cups. I sit down every two weeks and premeasure the amount I want to feed my dogs. This way I can just grab a cup at 6 a.m. and 4 p.m. and know it’s the right amount. And it is so easy this way! My dogs used to be overweight until I started this system. -- Dwayne O., via email

exercise they get. Keep in mind that the size of your dog -- small, medium, or large frame, for example -- is a consideration in exactly how much it should eat and how often. Talk to your veterinarian about the amount of food it should get, and stick to that diet. Be careful how often treats are given out, and of course, don’t feed your dog under the table or give it leftovers. Exercise is another important component of weight loss -- one that benefits both you and your dog. This can take the form of twice-daily walks, as well as play time and training time. Schedule at least an hour each day to turn off the TV and turn your attention DEAR DAN: Great idea! While some 100 percent to your dog. You’ll both breeds are a bit stocky and others are love it! prone to obesity, owners can exert control over the amount of calories their dogs consume and the amount of

Tidbits速 of Hoover, Pelham, Alabaster & Helena!

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FAMOUS LANDMARKS OF THE WORLD: WRIGLEY FIELD Home of the Chicago Cubs, Wrigley Field is located in the heart of downtown Chicago and is one of baseball’s most old-fashioned and famous ballparks. Built in 1914, Wrigley Field will be going on its 99th season in 2012 and its 97th year with the Cubs. Wrigley Field is the second oldest major league ballpark in the United States, following behind Boston’s Fenway Park built in 1912. Wrigley Field seats 41,160 people. Originally named Weeghman Park in honor of the original owner Charlie Weeghman, it was designed by architect Zachary Taylor Davis and cost $250,000 to construct. It originally sat 14,000. On April 23, 1914, the first major league game took place at the ballpark, where the Federals defeated Kansas City 9-1. In 1915, the Federal League folded for financial reasons, making way for the Cubs to leave Cincinnati for Chicago. In 1920, the Wrigley family, owners of Wrigley chewing gum, purchased the ballpark from Weeghman and changed the name to Cubs Park. In 1926, the name was finally changed to Wrigley Field. The bleachers and scoreboard were implemented in 1937; the original scoreboard remains intact today and is manually operating. It has never been struck with a batted ball. A longtime tradition is the flying of a “W” or “L” flag atop the scoreboard at the conclusion of every game signifying either a win or loss. Wrigley Field (Continued): Wrigley Field has seen many firsts: the first permanent concession stand and the beginning of the traditions of allowing fans to keep foul balls and throwing back home runs hit by the opposing team. Wrigley Field has also seen many classic moments in baseball history, including the famous pitching duel in 1917 between Jim “Hippo” Vaughn and the Cincinnati Reds’ Fred Toney. The most famous incident to take place at Wrigley Field is Babe Ruth’s alleged “call shot” in the 1932 World Series, where Ruth pointed toward the outfield just before nailing a home run into the bleachers. Wrigley Field is more affected by harsh wind conditions than any other Major League ballpark because of nearby Lake Michigan. The park’s nickname is the Friendly Confines, and it is the last standing Federal League ballpark. The Cubs, often referred to as “The Lovable Losers,” are famous for never winning a World Series at Wrigley Field, yet they are still one of the most successful franchises in baseball history. The famous “Da Curse of the Bill Goat” dates back to 1945 at the fourth game of the World Series between the Cubs and the Detroit Tigers. William “Billy Goat” Sianis and his goat Murphy were removed from the game because of the goat’s odor, and an angered Sianis placed a curse on the Cubs that said they would never win a championship. The Cubs lost game four, the World Series and have not won a World Series since.

¥ The giant squid has the distinction of possessing the largest eyes of any animal -- they’re as big as pie plates. ¥ For a queen bee, laying 3,000 eggs is all in a day’s work. ¥ Evidencing a drastic change in the nature of the United States since its agrarian beginnings, today ¥ It was, unsurprisingly, comedian and writer W.C. only a quarter of Americans live in rural areas. Fields who said, “I am free of all prejudices. I hate everyone equally.” ¥ The next time you’re in the jungle observing gorillas, be sure to notice if one sticks out its tongue. That means it’s angry. ¥ Even if you haven’t heard the They Might Be Giants song “Istanbul (Not Constantinople)” you ¥ In the filming of the original “Star Trek” television series, the ship’s transporter was used simply to cut are probably aware that the Turkish metropolis costs. With it, characters could move from one set to another without having to shoot costly landing has undergone name changes throughout its scenes. As a side note, the sparkling effect that could be seen when characters were transported was long history. It seems that when the name was created by aluminum dust. Constantinople, it was common for residents of the area to refer to things “in the city,” which in the ¥ If you’re like the average American, you’ll eat nine pounds of peanuts this year. Aegean dialect of Greek is pronounced “is tan polin.” Eventually the name stuck, and in 1930 Turkish ¥ Those who study such things say you’re more likely to be bitten by a mosquito if you’ve just eaten authorities formally adopted the name Istanbul. a banana.


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