Clever Thinking – NOT my own

A lot of my friends send me material about the English language because they know I adore such things. Here’s just one of them titled “English is Very Strange.” (I am unaware of the author to give credit.)

– Did you know that ‘verb’ is a noun?

– How can you look up words in a dictionary if you can’t spell them?

– If a word is misspelled in a dictionary, how would we ever know?

– If two mouses are mice and two louses are lice, why aren’t two houses hice?

– If Webster wrote the first dictionary, where did he find the words?

– If you’ve read a book, you can reread it. But wouldn’t this also mean that you would have to ‘member’ somebody in order to remember them?

– Is it a coincidence that the only 15 letter word that can be spelled without repeating a letter is uncopyrightable?

– Is there another word for a synonym?

– Shouldn’t there be a shorter word for ‘monosyllabic’?

– Why can’t you make another word using all the letters in ‘anagram’?

– Why do fat chance and slim chance mean the same thing?

– Why do overlook and oversee mean opposite things?

– Why do some people type ‘cool’ as ‘kewl?’

– Why does ‘slow down’ and ‘slow up’ mean the same thing?

– Why does flammable and inflammable mean the same thing?

– Why does X stand for a kiss and O stand for a hug?

– Why is ‘crazy man’ an insult, while to insert a comma and say ‘Crazy, man!’ is a compliment?

– Why are a wise man and wise guy opposites?

– Why is it that we recite at a play and play at a recital?

– Why is the alphabet in that order? Is it because of that song?

– Why isn’t ‘palindrome’ spelled the same way backwards?

– Why isn’t phonetic spelled the way it sounds?



Not By the Shine of My Chinny Chin Chin


“You don’t need any makeup,” I told my young nephew who accepted my request for some after I jokingly offered him blush. “Your skin is absolutely perfect.”

“Then I can just wash it off,” he protested as he argued his case of why he should playfully get some. Of course his aunt declined.

I sat at my desk applying the little bit of makeup that I wear before heading off to stuff programs at my church.

“Does my chin look shiny?” I asked the boy. Of all the features on my face, I am always very conscious of the size of my chin. I can’t help it. Bless the bluntness of his 7-year-old heart, the little guy certainly didn’t mince words.

“Yep,” he confirmed as he glanced over at my appearance. “Let me see if I can see my reflection.”



SURPRISE! “Did You Know . . . ” Part 3 with Lucky 13


Back by popular demand! No, that’s not true even a little bit because only one person has indicated with words to tell me they enjoy reading such lists; and by the same token, the person is a family member so it doesn’t really count since they tell you you’re doing good regardless of your circumstances.

So what’s a tell-it-like-it-is writer like me to do? Here goes nothin’:

. . .  rewinding back to my early teens, my friend and I seized the chance since we were home alone and took an illegal joyride in my relatives’ vehicle that they left at our house (after one of my parents drove them to the nearby airport for their flight for a vacation), and I let her drive around town even though she was underage and didn’t even possess a permit?

. . . after one of my countless excruciatingly tough health episodes, my bone marrow transplant physician Dr. Yanik finally conceded and allowed me to have Mexican food I desperately craved, because I had already fallen so far beyond the limits of even just being considered severely ill, it really didn’t make one teeny crumb of difference if I added spicy beany cheesy food to the mangled mess of myself?

. . . once I put some tomato soup in my plastic hat in the toilet (used to measure input and output in the hospital) to mix with what was already in there just to freak out my nurse?

. . . I used to have an ENORMOUS and secret-so-this-is-probably-my-family’s-first-time-hearing-this (as well as other items on this revealing list) crush on likewise left-handed Prince William Arthur Philip Louis born on June 21, 1982, so much so that as a young teen home by myself one day I eagerly snatched the opportunity to walk a few blocks to the neighborhood drugstore to buy a special new ten-dollar issue of PEOPLE magazine featuring huge colored photographs of my handsome blondie?

. . . when I answer the phone to hear a solicitor speed-talking and trying to sell me something on the other end, I feign stupidity and tell them I’m under 18, so they hang up quicker than you can blink?

. . . still in a very frail health condition with a severely weakened immune system unable to fight off germs in the outside world, my team of bone marrow transplant doctors, had they known, would certainly have unwaveringly opposed my actions if they knew that less than six months after my first bone marrow transplant at age 16 in 2000, I was already both attending my junior year of high school and holding down my first (and only) job as a sales associate at the mall (although I’m a fighter and would never have taken no for an answer)?

. . . in 2004 I traveled on a long 14-hour road trip with my Mom – who stayed awake by consuming Coke, lots of red licorice, and loudly singing out-of-tune with the radio (sorry, Mom, but it’s true) – to Boston to be fitted for special lenses (that my awesome advocate and Mom discovered online) that were so fresh on the market that a doctor all the way from Israel was also at the world renowned nonprofit eye health care organization called the Boston Foundation for Sight to learn about and be trained in using the newly invented lenses?

 . . . back when I was 16 and drove, I waited a good part of the day before telling my parents I got my first speeding ticket at two in the morning the night before because one, I was in shock and two, I thought the whole thing was kind of ridiculously funny?

. . . as a baby, our close family friend Leah – who I call and treat as my little sister – got dropped off at the hospital to visit me (and even nap in my hospital bed, which I was more than glad to exit for her to use) on so many occasions that my doctors eventually forbade her from visiting me and further risking my totally wiped out immune system?

. . . my friends John and Kathy Sternfels, who I’ve known since I was a child and we lived in the same neighborhood in Redford (where my oldest sister went to their middle son’s fifth grade pool party where boys weren’t allowed to splash girls), were promised at NorthRidge Church on Sunday, March 23, that I’d put them on this list in my favorite color of blue ink?

. . . I fell asleep with a water bottle filled with boiling hot water, and due to the left side of my body having the side effect of decreased sensitivity so I can’t feel certain things including the difference in hot and cold liquid temperatures, I woke up to find three huge blisters on my left calve where it had fallen?

. . . since my sister made a reference to this mischievous moment on FB after my second “Did you Know . . . ” blog post on March 22 – by the way, thanks for the reminder, Carrie – and because it’s quite fitting in such a list as this, I will now reveal: When we were girls growing up, after my oldest sister Carrie was acting quite bossy, I thought, and repeatedly insisting that I refill her spray water bottle for her so she could remain sunbathing in her swimsuit on our deck one heated summer day, I finally acquiesced to her demands, only to gleefully watch her unknowingly squirt sticky apple juice instead of refreshing water all over her body?

. . . the one time I drank a beer in my life, a Michelob Ultra, the beverage was gulped down quickly at my out-of-town friends’ house after we were out and a random lady COMPLETELY IGNORED ME – very rudely treating me like some insignificant loser who is too stupid to talk or think for herself even though I was standing right next to my friend plain as day – and asked my friend “what was wrong” with me, and so I very much needed to try to alleviate the colossal stress of the horrible encounter, kick back with a cold one and unwind (btw, the refreshment I’m not used to drinking went straight to my head and caused the eruption of an abundance of uncontrollable giggling)?

TRUST in God – Always

“Just get out the way and let God do His thing!”

– Denver Moore in “Same Kind of Different As Me: A Modern-Day Slave, An International Art Dealer, and the Unlikely Woman who Bound Them Together”

Staying with Mr. Moore’s quote, I’m reminded time and time again to trust in God and everything will work out – because I see how it ALWAYS does. Below are my two oldest nephews singing a song on this very topic.

Tips to Pass (Hospital) Time

Tips for Passing Time during long outpatient infusions or extensive hospital admissions:

► Read an interesting book or magazine

◊ Do crossword puzzles

► Play small electronic travel-size games like Yahtzee, which kept me busy a lot over the years at the hospital

◊ Do a book of Mad Libs

► Complete homework or other paperwork (I utilized MUCH time for this top priority)

◊ Watch TV

► Do any activity that can hold your interest while you’re being infused with medication and therefore unable to move around too much

*** Here’s the rewritten song lyrics from today’s video to the famous “Lion King” tune:
Hakuna Matata, what a wonderful phrase,
Hakuna Matata, there are many ways,
There are no hurries,
For the long treatment days,
You can play Yahtzee,
Or watch TV,
Hakuna Matata!

1 + 1 = Friends

Mathematical Magic

Mathematical Magic

“Guys, if you need to know anything,” I said to my nephews and niece as I twisted around to face them in the back of my Mom’s silver Crossover, “ask her – she is so smart.”

We sat in the unmoving vehicle where my preschool-aged nephew just finished another karate session in which he greatly excels (where I also witnessed firsthand the little guy doing full splits on the black asphalt), while my Mom talked over last minute instructions about taking care of three grandchildren while my sister took her eldest to Wednesday night baseball practice.

Our closer-than-close 12-year-old family friend I was referring to, however, voiced her difficulty in one area of school.

“Amy, tell her how good I am at math,” piped up the 7-year-old before a second had time to pass. It’s true – academically speaking, the entire lot of my school-aged nephews are experiencing success in the challenging multi-subject world of academia.

Now, mathematics for a seventh grade student versus a young boy in his first year of elementary school unquestionably varies hugely. That fact alone evidently did not cross the first grader’s mind or hinder in the least his repeated and sincere strives to offer assistance. My heart began to melt as I listened to the sweet exchange unfolding behind me.

“I can help you with math,” the boy spoke up again, all too eager to support his good buddy in any way he knew how.

The nearly-teenage girl graciously accepted his heartfelt invitation, albeit surely aware of the vast gap in their grade levels and subsequent negligible chance at true aid. But who can resist that?

“Sure, you can try.”


The palindrome P.A.P.

I thought of the acronym P.A.P. P.A.P is also a palindrome, meaning the letters represent the same thing whether read backwards or forwards. In addition to the initials being the same in either direction, so is the actual meaning of the words. P.A.P. = Patients Are People and the other way, People Are Patients.

One time, a resident doctor barged in the room I was in inside the hospital where a nurse was accessing my port with a needle, so my shirt was up to my neck since my port at that time during treatment was under skin in my chest. Thinking she was better and more important than me, she totally ignored my immediate statements to close the door like I wasn’t even there. Completely and very rudely disregarding my presence, her insensitive and wholly unprofessional actions demonstrated her biased attitude that doctors rank higher than patients. On a different day, the same hugely incompetent physician told my Mom and me about another relapse I had with leukemia while looking down at the floor. Talk about a lack of basic people skills! (Luckily, she was NOT HIRED by the hospital after her rounds.) Experiences like these – and I’ve sadly had many of them – can knock a person down.

Keep in mind that PEOPLE are both doctors AND patients.

Three cheers for being my co-homemade-video-maker today Mindy!!! (And the same disclaimer applies as previous times I’ve done videos.)