The Mornin' Mail is published every weekday except major holidays
Tuesday, October 23, 2007 Volume XVI, Number 90

did ya know?

Did Ya Know?... An American Red Cross Blood Drive will be held Thursday, October 25th from 1:30 to 7:00 p.m. in the First Nazarene Church, 2000 Grand, Carthage. Refreshments to all donors. Donor card or photo ID required.

Did Ya Know?... The McCune-Brooks Diabetic Support Group will meet October 24th at 4:00 p.m. in the hospital cafeteria. Topic is Diabetes and Exercise. Call 359-2355 for more information.

today's laugh

So, they caught you with this bundle of silverware. Whom did you plunder?
Two college dorms, your Honor.
Call up the downtown hotels and distribute this stuff.

Salesman: Tell your mother that I am selling a good ant powder.
Child: We have only uncles at this house - and they don’t use powder.

Customer: Five pounds of coffee, please.
Grocer: Yes, anything else today?
Customer: Well, if it isn’t too heavy a package, I’ll take it with me.
Grocer: Oh, no, it’ll only weight three or four pounds.

Skunks are never broke.
How come?
They always carry scents.

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

Thought She Was German.

That it is possible sometimes to be over zealous in one’s efforts to please was realized by one of our merchants the other day in a most unhappy moment. A lady stepped into his store and asked in a somewhat unintelligible way for certain goods Thinking the mode of speech was a familiar one to him the genial proprietor stepped up to her and addressed her in his most fluent German when she slung up her head and snapping out the purest United States, "I’m no Dutch woman," left the store as though she had been insulted. It is safe to say that plain English goes in that store now.

A Sheldon man, after having been married only one month and two days, applies for a divorce, stating that his bride "makes faces" at him.

Can’t be perfect health without pure blood. Burdock Blood Bitters makes pure blood. Invigorates the whole system.


Today's Feature

Payscale Study Vote Tonight.

Carthage City Council will meet this evening at 7:30 p.m. in the Council Chambers of City Hall.

Items on the agenda include the second reading of an ordinance that would authorize a contract between the City and Kaatz & Associates for a Comprehensive Compensation and Classification Study. If approved, Kaatz & Associates would evaluate and make recommendations for adjustments to City payscales in an attempt to bring City employees wages up to a more competitive level. Several council members including Claude Newport, Mike Harris and Tom Flanigan have voiced the opinion that the City might be better served to save the $22,000 appropriated for the Kaatz & Associates and conduct the study in-house.

The agenda also includes several first readings brought by the Public Safety committee including an ordinance that would make it legal to discharge fireworks within City limits on New Year’s Eve and the week of the 4th of July, an ordinance that would restrict parking to designated areas at Kellogg Lake Park, and an ordinance that would regulate the use of residential Propane Tanks by setting a size limit.

Just Jake Talkin'
Had a guy walk up and say he wanted to talk about the fireworks ordinance.

"I don’t wanna hear it," I said.

He said he didn’t think that was very fair not bein’ able to state his opinion.

I told him he misunderstood. I wasn’t talkin’ ‘bout his opinion, I was talkin’ ‘bout the fireworks. I don’t wanna hear it.

Come ta find out, he didn’t wanna hear it either. So we talked about it for a while.

We talked about the tradition of not havin’ fireworks legal in Carthage for the last 59 years or so. How folks have relocated in Carthage just because of that tradition of relative calm for their 4th of July picnic in the back yard. Sleepin’ in late on the 4th without bein’ shook outa bed by the 4,000 pack of Black Cats poppin’ by the window. Don’t wanna hear it.

This is some fact, but mostly,

Just Jake Talkin’.

Mornin' Mail

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

Treating Damaged Heart Valves

DEAR DR. DONOHUE: I had a double heart bypass done seven years ago. I have emphysema. Now I have three out of four heart valves that are bad. My doctor says I need surgery, but he wants to put it off as long as possible because of my health. For the first time in my life, I am scared of surgery.

What is the function of heart valves? What causes them to go bad? What types of replacement valves are available? -- J.B.

ANSWER: The four heart valves keep blood flowing in the right direction from one heart chamber to the next, and finally out of the heart. Serious valve problems can happen to any of the four valves, but the two valves most often affected are the aortic valve and the mitral valve. The aortic valve prevents blood from flowing back into the heart after the left ventricle pumps it out. The mitral valve prevents blood from flowing back into the left atrium after it has filled the left ventricle.

Rheumatic fever used to be the No. 1 cause of valve malfunction. Aging is a big reason why valves fail. Calcification of valves -- something that happens throughout life -- is another reason for valve trouble. Congenital valve anomalies are responsible for valve breakdown, as are valve infections.

Valves can become too narrow -- stenosis -- which makes it difficult for blood to flow through and out of the heart. Or they can become leaky -- regurgitant -- which causes blood to flow back into the chamber it just left.

Replacement valves are mechanical, man-made devices; those fashioned from pig or cow tissue; or ones constructed from a patient’s own tissues. Valve surgery is major surgery. Most do quite well. You should too.


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. 4

From John Graham, at the Hotel Cecil, London, to his son, Pierrepont, at the Union Stock Yards, Chicago. The old man has just finished going through the young man’s first report as manager of the lard department, and he finds it suspiciously good.


LONDON, December 1, 189-.

Dear Pierrepont: Your first report; looks so good that I’m a little afraid of it. Figures don’t lie, I know, but that’s, only because they can’t talk. As a matter of fact, they’re just as truthful as the man who’s behind them.

It’s been my experience that there are two kinds of figures--educated and uneducated ones--and that the first are a good deal like the people who have had the advantage of a college education on the inside and the disadvantage of a society finish on the outside--they’re apt to tell you only the smooth and the pleasant things. Of course, it’s mighty nice to be told that the shine of your shirt-front is blinding the floor-manager’s best girl; but if there’s a hole in the seat of your pants you ought to know that, too, because sooner or later you’ve got to turn your back to the audience.

Now don’t go off half-cocked and think I’m allowing that you ain’t truthful; because I think you are--reasonably so--and I’m sure that everything you say in your report is true. But is there anything you don’t say in it?

A good many men are truthful on the installment plan--that is, they tell their boss all the good things in sight about their end of the business and then dribble out the bad ones like a fellow who’s giving you a list of his debts. They’ll yell for a week that the business of their department has increased ten per cent., and then own up in a whisper that their selling cost has increased twenty. In the end, that always creates a worse impression than if both sides of the story had been told at once or the bad had been told first. It’s like buying a barrel of apples that’s been deaconed--after you’ve found that the deeper you go the meaner and wormier the fruit, you forget all about the layer of big, rosy, wax-finished pippins which was on top.

I never worry about the side of a proposition that I can see; what I want to get a look at is the side that’s out of sight. The bugs always snuggle down on the under side of the stone.

The best year we ever had--in our minds--was one when the superintendent of the packing-house wanted an increase in his salary, and, to make a big showing, swelled up his inventory like a poisoned pup. It took us three months, to wake up to what had happened, and a year to get over feeling as if there was sand in our eyes when we compared the second showing with the first. An optimist is as bad as a drunkard when he comes to figure up results in business--he sees double. I employ optimists to get results and pessimists to figure them up. After I’ve charged off in my inventory for wear and tear and depreciation, I deduct a little more just for luck--bad luck. That’s the only sort of luck a merchant can afford to make a part of his calculations. The fellow who said you can’t make a silk purse out of a sow’s ear wasn’t on to the packing business. You can make the purse and you can fill it, too, from the same critter. What you can’t do is to load up a report with moonshine or an inventory with wind, and get anything more substantial than a moonlight sail toward bankruptcy. The kittens of a wildcat are wildcats, and there’s no use counting on their being angoras.

Speaking of educated pigs naturally calls to mind Jake Solzenheimer and the lard that he sold half a cent a pound cheaper than any one else in the business could make it. That was a long time ago, when the packing business was still on the bottle, and when the hogs that came to Chicago got only a common-school education and graduated as plain hams and sides and lard and sausage. Literature hadn’t hit the hog business then. It was just Graham’s hams or Smith’s lard, and there were no poetical brands or high-art labels.

Well, sir, one day I heard that this Jake was offering lard to the trade at half a cent under the market, and that he’d had the nerve to label it "Driven Snow Leaf." Told me, when I ran up against him on the street, that he’d got the name from a song which began, "Once I was pure as the driven snow." Said it made him feel all choky and as if he wanted to be a better man, so he’d set out to make the song famous in the hope of its helping others. Allowed that this was a hard world, and that it was little enough we could do in our business life to scatter sunshine along the way; but he proposed that every can which left his packing-house after this should carry the call to a better life into some humble home.

I let him lug that sort of stuff to the trough till he got tired, and then I looked him square in the eye and went right at him with:

"Jake, what you been putting in that lard?" because I knew mighty well that there was something in it which had never walked on four feet and fattened up on fifty-cent corn and then paid railroad fare from the Missouri River to Chicago. There are a good many things I don’t know, but hogs ain’t one of them.

Jake just grinned at me and swore that there was nothing in his lard except the pure juice of the hog; so I quit fooling with him and took a can of "Driven Snow" around to our chemist. It looked like lard and smelt like lard--in fact, it looked better than real lard: too white and crinkly and tempting on top. And the next day the chemist came down to my office and told me that "Driven Snow" must have been driven through a candle factory, because it had picked up about twenty per cent. of paraffin wax somewhere.

Of course, I saw now why Jake was able to undersell us all, but it was mighty important to knock out "Driven Snow" with the trade in just the right way, because most of our best customers had loaded up with it. So I got the exact formula from the chemist and had about a hundred sample cans made up, labeling each one "Wandering Boy Leaf Lard," and printing on the labels: "This lard contains twenty per cent. of paraffin." I sent most of these cans, with letters of instruction, to our men through the country. Then I waited until it was Jake’s time to be at the Live Stock Exchange, and happened in with a can of "Wandering Boy" under my arm. It didn’t take me long to get into conversation with Jake, and as we talked I swung that can around until it attracted his attention, and he up and asked:

"What you got there, Graham?"

"Oh, that," I answered, slipping the can behind my back--"that’s a new lard we’re putting out--something not quite so expensive as our regular brand." Jake stopped grinning then and gave me a mighty sharp look.

"Lemme have a squint at it," says he, trying not to show too keen an interest in his face.

I held back a little; then I said: "Well, I don’t just know as I ought to show you this. We haven’t regularly put it on the market, and this can ain’t a fair sample of what we can do; but so long as I sort of got the idea from you I might as well tell you. I’d been thinking over what you said about that lard of yours, and while they were taking a collection in church the other day the soprano up and sings a mighty touching song. It began, ‘Where is my wandering boy to-night?’ and by the time she was through I was feeling so mushy and sobby that I put a five instead of a one into the plate by mistake. I’ve been thinking ever since that the attention of the country ought to be called to that song, and so I’ve got up this missionary lard"; and I shoved the can of "Wandering Boy" under his eyes, giving him time to read the whole label.

"H--l!" he said.

"Yes," I answered; "that’s it. Good lard gone wrong; but it’s going to do a great work."

Jake’s face looked like the Lost Tribes--the whole bunch of ‘em--as the thing soaked in; and then he ran his arm through mine and drew me off into a corner.

"Graham," said he, "let’s drop this cussed foolishness. You keep dark about this and we’ll divide the lard trade of the country."

I pretended not to understand what he was driving at, but reached out and grasped his hand and wrung it. "Yes, yes, Jake," I said; "we’ll stand shoulder to shoulder and make the lard business one grand sweet song," and then I choked him off by calling another fellow into the conversation. It hardly seemed worth while to waste time telling Jake what he was going to find out when he got back to his office--that there wasn’t any lard business to divide, because I had hogged it all.

You see, my salesmen had taken their samples of "Wandering Boy" around to the buyers and explained that it was made from the same formula as "Driven Snow," and could be bought at the same price. They didn’t sell any "Boy," of course--that wasn’t the idea; but they loaded up the trade with our regular brand, to take the place of the "Driven Snow," which was shipped back to Jake by the car-lot.

Since then, when anything looks too snowy and smooth and good at the first glance, I generally analyze it for paraffin. I’ve found that this is a mighty big world for a square man and a mighty small world for a crooked one.

I simply mention these things in a general way. I’ve confidence that you’re going to make good as head of the lard department, and if, when I get home, I find that your work analyzes seventy-five per cent, as pure as your report I shall be satisfied. In the meanwhile I shall instruct the cashier to let you draw a hundred dollars a week, just to show that I haven’t got a case of faith without works. I reckon the extra twenty-five per will come in mighty handy now that you’re within a month of marrying Helen.

I’m still learning how to treat an old wife, and so I can’t give you many pointers about a young one. For while I’ve been married as long as I’ve been in business, and while I know all the curves of the great American hog, your ma’s likely to spring a new one on me tomorrow. No man really knows anything about women except a widower, and he forgets it when he gets ready to marry again. And no woman really knows anything about men except a widow, and she’s got to forget it before she’s willing to marry again. The one thing you can know is that, as a general proposition, a woman is a little better than the man for whom she cares. For when a woman’s bad, there’s always a man at the bottom of it; and when a man’s good, there’s always a woman at the bottom of that, too.

The fact of the matter is, that while marriages may be made in heaven, a lot of them are lived in hell and end in South Dakota. But when a man has picked out a good woman he holds four hearts, and he needn’t be afraid to draw cards if he’s got good nerve. If he hasn’t, he’s got no business to be sitting in games of chance. The best woman in the world will begin trying out a man before she’s been married to him twenty-four hours; and unless he can smile over the top of a four-flush and raise the ante, she’s going to rake in the breeches and keep them.

The great thing is to begin right. Marriage is a close corporation, and unless a fellow gets the controlling interest at the start he can’t pick it up later. The partner who owns fifty-one per cent. of the stock in any business is the boss, even if the other is allowed to call himself president. There’s only two jobs for a man in his own house--one’s boss and the other’s office-boy, and a fellow naturally falls into the one for which he’s fitted.

Of course, when I speak of a fellow’s being boss in his own home, I simply mean that, in a broad way, he’s going to shape the policy of the concern. When a man goes sticking his nose into the running of the house, he’s apt to get it tweaked, and while he’s busy drawing it back out of danger he’s going to get his leg pulled, too. You let your wife tend to the housekeeping and you focus on earning money with which she can keep house. Of course, in one way, it’s mighty nice of a man to help around the place, but it’s been my experience that the fellows who tend to all the small jobs at home never get anything else to tend to at the office. In the end, it’s usually cheaper to give all your attention to your business and to hire a plumber.

You don’t want to get it into your head, though, that because your wife hasn’t any office-hours she has a soft thing. A lot of men go around sticking out their chests and wondering why their wives have so much trouble with the help, when they are able to handle their clerks so easy. If you really want to know, you lift two of your men out of their revolving-chairs, and hang one over a forty-horse-power cook-stove that’s booming along under forced draft so that your dinner won’t be late, with a turkey that’s gobbling for basting in one oven, and a cake that’s gone back on you in a low, underhand way in another, and sixteen different things boiling over on top and mixing up their smells. And you set the other at a twelve-hour stunt of making all the beds you’ve mussed, and washing all the dishes you’ve used, and cleaning all the dust you’ve kicked up, and you boss the whole while the baby yells with colic over your arm--you just try this with two of your men and see how long it is before there’s rough-house on the Wabash. Yet a lot of fellows come home after their wives have had a day of this and blow around about how tired and overworked they are, and wonder why home isn’t happier. Don’t you ever forget that it’s a blamed sight easier to keep cool in front of an electric fan than a cook-stove, and that you can’t subject the best temper in the world to 500 degrees Fahrenheit without warming it up a bit. And don’t you add to your wife’s troubles by saying how much better you could do it, but stand pat and thank the Lord you’ve got a snap.

I sail to-morrow. I’m feeling in mighty good spirits, and I hope I’m not going to find anything at your end of the line to give me a relapse.

Your affectionate father,


Copyright 1997-2007 by Heritage Publishing. All rights reserved.