The Mornin' Mail is published every weekday except major holidays
Tuesday, December 18, 2007 Volume XVI, Number 129

did ya know?

Did Ya Know?... An American Red Cross Blood Drive will be held Thursday, December 20th from 11:30 to 6:00 p.m. in the Carthage Nazarene Church, 2000 Grand Street. A "Holiday Hero" t-shirt will be given to everyone who donates blood.

Did Ya Know?... Due to the recent ice storm that has caused down utility lines and tree limbs, Allied Waste Services is requesting that all residential alley pickups move their solid waste to the curb side for removal, until further notice. For more information call the Public Works Department at 237-7010.

today's laugh

You’re late again Smith! Didn’t your alarm clock go off?
Oh, yes, sir, it went off all right. But the trouble was that it went off while I was asleep.

Give me a sentence using the word "miniature."
The miniature asleep you begin to snore.

Doctor, why is the back part torn out of this new book?
It was labelled "appendix," and I took it out without thinking.

I’m nobody’s fool.
Well, don’t get down about it. Maybe you can get someone to adopt you.

A Chronological Record of Events as they have Transpired in the City and County since our last Issue.

Shot for Eavesdropping.

Yesterday afternoon a Mrs. Gibbs was shot in the back of the hand with a 22 caliber rifle by Mrs. Mary Parks. They both occupy rooms in the same house. Mrs. Parks had visitors, and Mrs. Gibbs couldn’t resist the temptation to eavesdrop at her neighbor’s door. Mrs. Parks caught her at this and with deliberate aim she fired a bullet into Mrs. Gibb’s hand. The wound was not a very serious one. Since then the women have made up and are apparently on good terms.

Contract for Support and Board.

A contract was filed today by the terms of which Mrs. Minta Young of Water street in this City agrees to take care of board and clothe Sarah A. Haggard during the latter’s natural life. A companion document is a deed mentioned in another column whereby Minta Young is deeded a house and lot on Water street by Mrs. Haggard.


Today's Feature

Crisis Center Family Dinner.

The Carthage Crisis Center will hold a Christmas Day Family Dinner on Tuesday, December 25, from 1 p.m. until 3 p.m. in the First United Methodist Church Fellowship Hall, 7th and Main at the West entrance. The dinner will be held for those who wish to be with others and have no place to go for Christmas.

Ham and all the trimmings will be served, entertainment and fellowship will be offered.

Those who wish to volunteer to help are asked to call Marilyn Bisbee at 417-358-3533. The same number should be used by those who need transportation to the dinner or those who need a meal delivered, December 21 through December 24.

The dinner is sponsored by the Carthage Crisis Center with assistance from Convenient Store Services.


Children’s Christmas Party Successful.

The Carthage Police Department held its annual Children’s Christmas party last Saturday in the Carthage Memorial Hall. Entertainment was provided by Duke Mason. The event was well attended by approximately 500 children, all of whom received a gift.

Just Jake Talkin'
I can understand the Public TV channel needin’ to make a pitch for folks ta put some money in to keep the station runnin’. What I can’t figure out is why they run "special" programmin’ durin’ the campaign.

I personally have some shows that I tune in to on a regular basis. There are few things that frustrate me more than workin’ my schedule around so I can take a few minutes to sit down and catch those programs, just ta discover that the programming has been modified durin’ the fund raisin’ appeal.

Don’t get me wrong, I’m not opposed to pitchin’ in ta help. It’s just the old sayin’ "dance with who brung ya" would seem to apply here. I would be a lot more receptive if a pitch was made durin’ a program that I associate with the donation.

This is some fact, but mostly,

Just Jake Talkin’.

Mornin' Mail

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

Pregnant Women Should Observe Prohibition

DEAR DR. DONOHUE: My husband and I are both 35, successful in our fields and lead a comfortable life. We are expecting our first child in six months. We drink wine with dinner. My gynecologist has told me to forgo alcohol during pregnancy. I drink two glasses of wine at dinner. Is this too much alcohol? My husband doesn’t think so. -- R.R.

ANSWER: You and your husband are successful people. You want your child to be successful. Stay away from any alcohol during your pregnancy, including the two glasses of wine at dinner.

Fetal alcohol syndrome is a preventable disaster inflicted on an innocent third party -- a baby -- by the thoughtlessness of its mother. Sometimes it’s done out of ignorance, but you’ve been warned; you have no excuse.

Alcohol passing from the mother to her fetus can lower IQ, sometimes to the point of profound mental retardation.

It can stunt the baby’s growth throughout life. It’s responsible for several malformations. The eyes are small and spaced widely apart. The upper lip is extremely thin. The head is undersized. The jaw isn’t fully developed. The heart can have holes in it. Children born with the syndrome often suffer from emotional disorders during life.

There are more examples of what alcohol does to a developing fetus, but these are enough examples to make any pregnant woman not take a drop during pregnancy.

Your husband might have a point. The degree of damage depends on the amount of alcohol drunk. However, no expert can state what constitutes a safe amount. In light of that, all say that no alcohol is the safe rule for pregnant women to follow.

More Letters from
a Self-Made
to His Son

by George Horace Lorimer

First Published 1903

From John Graham, head of the house of Graham & Company, pork packers, in Chicago, familiarly known on ‘Change as Old Gorgon Graham, to his son, Pierrepont, at the Union Stock Yards.

No. 10
From John Graham, at Mount Clematis, Michigan, to his son, Pierrepont, at the Union Stock Yards, Chicago. The young man has done famously during the first year of his married life, and the old man has decided to give him a more important position.


MOUNT CLEMATIS, January 1, 1900.

Dear Pierrepont: Since I got here, my rheumatism has been so bad mornings that the attendant who helps me dress has had to pull me over to the edge of the bed by the seat of my pajamas. If they ever give way, I reckon I’ll have to stay in bed all day. As near as I can figure out from what the doctor says, the worse you feel during the first few days you’re taking the baths, the better you really are. I suppose that when a fellow dies on their hands they call it a cure.

I’m by the worst of it for to-day, though, because I’m downstairs. Just now the laugh is on an old boy with benevolent side-whiskers, who’s sliding down the balusters, and a fat old party, who looks like a bishop, that’s bumping his way down with his feet sticking out straight in front of him. Shy away from these things that end in an ism, my boy. From skepticism to rheumatism they’ve an ache or a pain in every blamed joint.

Still, I don’t want to talk about my troubles, but about your own. Barton leaves us on the first, and so we shall need a new assistant general manager for the business. It’s a ten-thousand-dollar job, and a nine-thousand-nine-hundred-and-ninety-nine-dollar man can’t fill it. From the way in which you’ve handled your department during the past year, I’m inclined to think that you can deliver that last dollar’s worth of value. Anyway, I’m going to try you, and you’ve got to make good, because if you should fail it would be a reflection on my judgment as a merchant and a blow to my pride as a father. I could bear up under either, but the combination would make me feel like firing you.

As a matter of fact, I can’t make you general manager; all I can do is to give you the title of general manager. And a title is like a suit of clothes--it must fit the man who tries to wear it. I can clothe you in a little brief authority, as your old college friend, Shakespeare, puts it, but I can’t keep people from laughing at you when they see you swelling around in your high-water pants.

It’s no use demanding respect in this world; you’ve got to command it. There’s old Jim Wharton, who, for acting as a fourth-class consul of a fifth-class king, was decorated with the order of the garter or the suspender or the eagle of the sixth class--the kind these kings give to the cook when he gets just the right flavor of garlic in a fancy sauce. Jim never did a blame thing in his life except to inherit a million dollars from a better man, who happened to come over on the Cunard Line instead of the Mayflower, but he’d swell around in our best society, with that ribbon on his shirt-front, thinking that he looked like Prince Rupert by Louis the Fourteenth and Lady Clara Vere de Vere, instead of the fourth assistant to the floor manager at the Plumbers’ ball. But you take Tom Lipton, who was swelled up into Sir Thomas because he discovered how to pack a genuine Yorkshire ham in Chicago, and a handle looks as natural on him as on a lard pail.

A man is a good deal like a horse--he knows the touch of a master, and no matter how lightly the reins are held over him, he understands that he must behave. But let a fellow who isn’t quite sure of himself begin sawing on a horse’s mouth, and the first thing you know the critter bucks and throws him.

You’ve only one pair of eyes with which to watch 10,000 men, so unless they’re open all the time you’ll be apt to overlook something here and there; but you’ll have 10,000 pairs of eyes watching you all the time, and they won’t overlook anything. You mustn’t be known as an easy boss, or as a hard boss, but as a just boss. Of course, some just men lean backward toward severity, and some stoop down toward mercy. Both kinds may make good bosses, but I’ve usually found that when you hold the whip hand it’s a great thing not to use the whip.

It looks like a pretty large contract to know what 10,000 men are doing, but, as a matter of fact, there’s nothing impossible about it. In the first place, you don’t need to bother very much about the things that are going all right, except to try to make them go a little better; but you want to spend your time smelling out the things that are going all wrong and laboring with them till you’ve persuaded them to lead a better life. For this reason, one of the most important duties of your job is to keep track of everything that’s out of the usual. If anything unusually good happens, there’s an unusually good man behind it, and he ought to be earmarked for promotion; and if anything unusually bad happens, there’s apt to be an unusually bad man behind that, and he’s a candidate for a job with another house.

A good many of these things which it’s important for you to know happen a little before beginning and a little after quitting time; and so the real reason why the name of the boss doesn’t appear on the time-sheet is not because he’s a bigger man than any one else in the place, but because there shouldn’t be any one around to take his time when he gets down and when he leaves.

You can tell a whole lot about your men from the way in which they come in and the way in which they go home; but because a fellow is in the office early, it doesn’t always mean that he’s panting to begin work; it may mean that he’s been out all night. And when you see a fellow poring over his books after the others have quit, it doesn’t always follow that he’s so wrapped up in his work that he can’t tear himself away from it. It may mean that during business hours he had his head full of horse-racing instead of figures, and that he’s staying to chase up the thirty cents which he’s out in his balance. You want to find out which.

The extra-poor men and the extra-good men always stick their heads up above the dead-level of good-enough men; the first to holler for help, and the second to get an extra reach. And when your attention is attracted to one of these men, follow him up and find out just what sort of soil and fertilizer he needs to grow fastest. It isn’t enough to pick likely stock; you’ve got to plant it where the conditions are right to develop its particular possibilities. A fellow who’s got the making of a five-thousand-dollar office man in him may not sell enough lard to fry a half-portion of small potatoes if you put him on the road. Praise judiciously given may act on one man like an application of our bone-meal to a fruit tree, and bring out all the pippins that are in the wood; while in the other it may simply result in his going all to top.

You mustn’t depend too much on the judgment of department heads and foremen when picking men for promotion. Take their selection if he is the best man, but know for yourself that he is the best man.

Sometimes a foreman will play a favorite, and, as any fellow who’s been to the races knows, favorites ain’t always winners. And sometimes, though not often, he’ll try to hold back a good man through jealousy. When I see symptoms of a foreman’s being jealous of a man under him, that fellow doesn’t need any further recommendation to me. A man’s never jealous of inferiority.

It’s a mighty valuable asset for a boss, when a vacancy occurs in a department, to be able to go to its head when he recommends Bill Smith for the position, and show that he knows all about Bill Smith from his number-twelve socks up to his six-and-a-quarter hat, and to ask: "What’s the matter with Tom Jones for the job?" When you refuse to take something just as good in this world, you’ll usually find that the next time you call the druggist has the original Snicker’s Sassafras Sneezer in stock.

It’s mighty seldom, though, that a really good man will complain to you that he’s being held down, or that his superior is jealous of him. It’s been my experience that it’s only a mighty small head that so small an idea as this can fill. When a fellow has it, he’s a good deal like one of those girls with the fatal gift of beauty in her imagination, instead of her face--always believing that the boys don’t dance with her because the other girls tell them spiteful things about her.

Besides always having a man in mind for any vacancy that may occur, you want to make sure that there are two men in the office who understand the work of each position in it. Every business should be bigger than any one man. If it isn’t, there’s a weak spot in it that will kill it in the end. And every job needs an understudy. Sooner or later the star is bound to fall sick, or get the sulks or the swelled head, and then, if there’s no one in the wings who knows her lines, the gallery will rotten-egg the show and howl for its money back. Besides, it has a mighty chastening and stimulating effect on the star to know that if she balks there’s a sweet young thing in reserve who’s able and eager to go the distance.

Of course, I don’t mean by this that you want to play one man against another or try to minimize to a good man his importance to the house. On the contrary, you want to dwell on the importance of all positions, from that of office-boy up, and make every man feel that he is a vital part of the machinery of the business, without letting him forget that there’s a spare part lying around handy, and that if he breaks or goes wrong it can be fitted right in and the machine kept running. It’s good human nature to want to feel that something’s going to bust when you quit, but it’s bad management if things are fixed so that anything can.

In hiring new men, you want to depend almost altogether on your own eyes and your own judgment. Remember that when a man’s asking for a job he’s not showing you himself, but the man whom he wants you to hire. For that reason, I never take on an applicant after a first interview. I ask him to call again. The second time he may not be made up so well, and he may have forgotten some of his lines. In any event, hell feel that he knows you a little better, and so act a little easier and talk a little freer.

Very often a man whom you didn’t like on his first appearance will please you better on his second, because a lot of people always appear at their worst when they’re trying to appear at their best. And again, when you catch a fellow off guard who seemed all right the first time, you may find that he deaconed himself for your benefit, and that all the big strawberries were on top. Don’t attach too much importance to the things which an applicant has a chance to do with deliberation, or pay too much attention to his nicely prepared and memorized speech about himself. Watch the little things which he does unconsciously, and put unexpected questions which demand quick answers.

If he’s been working for Dick Saunders, it’s of small importance what Dick says of him in his letter of recommendation. If you want Dick’s real opinion, get it in some other way than in an open note, of which the subject’s the bearer. As a matter of fact, Dick’s opinion shouldn’t carry too much weight, except on a question of honesty, because if Dick let him go, he naturally doesn’t think a great deal of him; and if the man resigned voluntarily, Dick is apt to feel a little sore about it. But your applicant’s opinion of Dick Saunders is of very great importance to you. A good man never talks about a real grievance against an old employer to a new one; a poor man always pours out an imaginary grievance to any one who will listen. You needn’t cheer in this world when you don’t like the show, but silence is louder than a hiss.

Hire city men and country men; men who wear grandpa’s Sunday suit; thread-bare men and men dressed in those special four-ninety-eight bargains; but don’t hire dirty men. Time and soap will cure dirty boys, but a full-grown man who shrinks from the use of water externally is as hard to cure as one who avoids its use internally.

It’s a mighty curious thing that you can tell a man his morals are bad and he needs to get religion, and hell still remain your friend; but that if you tell him his linen’s dirty and he needs to take a bath, you’ve made a mortal enemy.

Give the preference to the lean men and the middleweights. The world is full of smart and rich fat men, but most of them got their smartness and their riches before they got their fat.

Always appoint an hour at which you’ll see a man, and if he’s late a minute don’t bother with him. A fellow who can be late when his own interests are at stake is pretty sure to be when yours are. Have a scribbling pad and some good letter paper on a desk, and ask the applicant to write his name and address. A careful and economical man will use the pad, but a careless and wasteful fellow will reach for the best thing in sight, regardless of the use to which it’s to be put.

Look in a man’s eyes for honesty; around his mouth for weakness; at his chin for strength; at his hands for temperament; at his nails for cleanliness. His tongue will tell you his experience, and under the questioning of a shrewd employer prove or disprove its statements as it runs along. Always remember, in the case of an applicant from another city, that when a man says he doesn’t like the town in which he’s been working it’s usually because he didn’t do very well there.

You want to be just as careful about hiring boys as men. A lot of employers go on the theory that the only important thing about a boy is his legs, and if they’re both fitted on and limber they hire him. As a matter of fact, a boy is like a stick of dynamite, small and compact, but as full of possibilities of trouble as a car-load of gunpowder. One bad boy in a Sunday-school picnic can turn it into a rough-house outfit for looting orchards, and one little cuss in your office can demoralize your kids faster than you can fire them.

Continued next week...

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