Handy Response to Un-Appreciated Letter

Did you ever get a letter from someone that lit your fuse? A friend of mine recently did, and asked for my advice for a response.

I recalled a response that I heard many years ago when I worked in a bank..

The response:


Dear Sir,

I am sitting in the smallest room in the house and I have your letter before me.

reading on toilet

Soon it will be behind me.

Yours truly….



SQL Programming in Clarion

I have posted several hints for working with MS-SQL2005 and get many requests for more.

If you are working with SQL-2005 Express or Standard, and have a hint you would like published, then please let me know and I will add it to the site.

The site I post to is www.sqlkey.com/

John Griffiths

A Rude Awakening This Morning

Our neighbour saw a possum a few nights ago so he set up a small live animal trap in our front garden. It was armed with a peanut butter sandwich.
I peeked out early this morning, and yes, there was an animal in the trap.

Problem was, that it was not a possum! It was a SKUNK.

At that stage there was no bad odour around, so I phoned the neighbour to alert him to the facts. Dang, his wife answered the phone and advised me he had gone to church and would not be back home until around midday.

I was not going to go anywhere near the thing, and we had people coming later this morning and we certainly did not want a bad smell around.

My wife had the presence of mind to phone the local Live Animal Control centre. And, Sunday morning, we managed to find someone on the phone.

About 45 minutes later, a young woman, (about 23 years old, dressed in t-shirt, shorts and wearing flip-flops – no sign of the protective gear we expected) arrived and assessed the situation. She sneeked over to where the trap was and peeked around the garden wall at it.
Then she came back and assured us that she would take care of it!

We withdrew back into the house and were dreading what would happen.

It seems she managed to cover the cage with a sheet of plastic, and then proceeded, with much caution, to anaesthetise the beast.
It took about 15 minutes, and she soon had the sleeping animal in a small bag.
She certainly knew what she was doing, and looked as if she had done so many times before.


Reminds me of an occasion, back in Western Australia about 40 years ago, when my Father set a trap near a hole in our back garden. He used a rat trap like this:-

Rat Trap

We approached the trap the next day and could not make out just what was in the trap. We could determine that it was a reptile, and that it had legs.

It was all curled up inside the trap. After cutting the trap open, we discovered that it was a…

Race Horse Goanna = Goulds Monitor
… a Race Horse Goanna. He was about 4 foot long and once free, headed for the bush.

Morale of the story:- Animals are not aware which specie the trap is set for!

Denver, Colorado

We have just returned from a road trip to the Denver area. It is very impressive to see the Rocky Mountains up close. We drove up to the Rocky Mountain National Park and would recommend the drive to anyone. I will add a photo or two here as soon as I get time.

Denver is a nice clean city, and there is a lot to do in the area. This was my first visit there and I will surely return again.

Here is a photo of me at about 12000 ft. in mid summer at the top of Rocky Mountain National Park, Colorado.-

rocky mountains Co

John Griffiths

The Price of Oil and Fuel

So, we are all starting to really feel the effects of the rising price of Oil.

I found this snippet on another blog and thought it would be great to share….

$200 oil is still very cheap. 200/160= $1,25 per liter of oil.

1 barrel of oil produces as much energy as 12 workers during 1 year, and at $200 it is still cheaper than Coca Cola.

The problem is that we are used to cheap energy, and this cheap energy is essential especially for aviation. But with production stagnant at approx 85mb/day, and demand rising despite record prices, there might be some dark clouds ahead.

Aviation is beginning to reel from the rising prices… jet fuel went through the $1,300-a-tonne mark last week. Attempts by airlines to hedge against future price increases is becoming more difficult, as hedging providers are being careful not to be burned by price rises. British Airways are planning to reduce flight schedules commencing later this year. Falling demand for tickets limits the airlines ability to raise fares. Other airlines will no doubt follow the the BA lead. Gasoline prices will continue to rise in line with the price of crude. perhaps, if governments raise taxes in an attempt to reduce demand, then gas price rises will exceed the crude price rises. Oh woe are we! The worst is yet to come.

John Griffiths

Back from Italy

We have just returned from our recent trip to Italy alive and well.

We went on a two week tour organised by GoAheadTours.com and had a fabulous time. Everything went according to plan, apart from two very long airport lay-overs (both in New York’s JFK – 1 of 7 hours and one of 6 hours). Go Ahead was great and we would not hesitate to use them again. The Atlantic crossings were flown on Alitalia. This was the first time we had ever flown Alitalia, and would try to stay away from them in the future. Service was not up to the standard we have become accustomed to with Qantas. The Boeing 767 we flew in from Rome to JFK was pretty much fitted out in a vary basic format (no in-seat video), and the most seats had broken support under whatever cushion was left. In all, a very tired plane. My wife had a broken seat. Our two fiends had broken seats. They partially overcame the problem by placing their blankets on top of the seat cushions. As the flights were all full to capacity, there was no option to switch seats.

The highlights of the trip for me were the Lake Como region of northern Italy and the isle of Capri. Also, we enjoyed a few days in Assisi.

Our route was Lake Como Region, Milano, Venice, Bologna, Florence, Assisi, Pompei, Sorrento/Capri and finally Rome/Vatican City. We were away 15 days to May 10 2008.

I will post some photos in the next few days and place a link here when I get the chance.


Bangkok Railway

I travelled to Bangkok several years ago and was sure that I did not need to re-visit the city any time soon.

Today I received this short video (Windows Media Player .wmv) from a friend and decided to share it.
I did not go to this part of the city.

I do remember that Bangkok had some over-crowding problems back then, but now it looks worse.

Train in Bangkok


= = = = = = = = ===================

Two Weeks of Hell

Right after my trip to the CapeSoft World Tour event in Las Vegas, I developed a case of Shingles.

Oh boy, you do not want to experience this. Luckily my case was not as bad as it could have been. I did visit a doctor in time (must be within 48 hours of the appearance of the rash) to be prescribed the anti-viral tablets. The outbreak appeared just a week before we were to take a road trip to Nashville with friends. I managed to endure the trip by taking pain killers. Not much could be done about the rash. It just has to take its course.

My friends were great, and they managed to endure my suffering by imbibing in alcoholic beverages. Thanks go to Candace, Bill, Sandra, Skip and Sharon for your support.

If you are round-about the age of 60, and had chicken-pox as a child, then you would be well advised to see you doctor about having the newly available vaccine for us oldies. The USA FDA approved its use just last year.

Here I sit, three weeks on, and beginning to feel great again.

To find more details on shingles, check out WebMD


Something Profound

I wish I had thought of this first. But no, I left that to my wife Candace…

” We NEED to have MORE than we NEED to HAVE ! ”

This came to her during a late night discussion when we were attempting (as usual) to solve the World’s problems. Luckily I was alert (Dont call me a lert) enough to decide to write it down for later use.

Now we always know what our problems in life are. And they are … that we presently do not have more than we need. So we strive to get more of what we need.

Maybe one day ……