About ME

My photo
Mansfield, Texas, United States
Mr. E is a Christian, Husband, Father of 2, former Army Officer and Texas Rangers Baseball fan.

Saturday, March 8, 2008

10 Things I Learned From My Son's Science Report

Today I am spending my early hours helping my son finish a Science Report that was due yesterday. The teacher was nice enough to let him finish it over the weekend. The report is over the heart and blood. The format of the report comes in the form of 10 questions that he has to research and answer. I really enjoyed the time spent with my son researching this information. We were excited to learn together.

Here are the results of our findings...

Question 1: Was it possible for John F. Kennedy to read in a newspaper about the first successful open-heart surgery? Answer: YES (The first successful open heart surgery was performed by Dr. John Gibbon in May of 1953, approx. 10 years before President Kennedy was assassinated in Dallas on November 22, 1963.)

Question 2: Was it possible for Napoleon Bonaparte’s doctor to examine him with a stethoscope? Answer: NO (Napoleon Bonaparte died in exile on St. Helena in 1815, approx. 1 year before the earliest known stethoscopes were invented by Rene-Theophile Hyacinthe Laennec in 1816.

Question 3: Was it possible for Abraham Lincoln to have an EKG run on him?
Answer: NO (President Lincoln was assassinated by John Wilkes Booth on April 12, 1865. The first known uses of the electrocardiogram (ECG or EKG) was recorded until about 1872. More accurate versions were not used until the late 1890's.

Question 4: Was it possible for an American Revolution Soldier to use Digitalis if he had abnormal heart rhythms? Answer: No & YES. (If the soldier wanted to use the plant Digitalis, also known as foxgloves, during the war, then the answer would be NO. The American Revolution was fought between 1775 and 1782. Digitalis was not used to treat heart conditions until 1785, when it was used by William Withering. However if the soldier in question survived the war, then he possibly could have used this new medicine, while as a veteran.

Question 5: Was it possible for Thomas Jefferson to know his blood type? Answer NO (The most common type of blood classification, the ABO System was discovered by Karl Landsteiner in the early 1900's. Sadly Thomas Jefferson died on July 4, 1826.

Question 6: Was it possible for your Great-Grandparents to know about the RH Factor in blood?
Answer: It all depends on if your great-grandparents were alive in 1940. (The RH, or Rhesus, Factors in blood were discovered by Karl Landsteiner and A.S. Wiener in 1937. They did not publish their findings until 1940. So if your great-grandparents were still alive in, or born during or after, 1940, then it is quite possible they could have read about this new revolutionary discovery.

Question 7: Was it possible for George Washington's doctor to take his blood pressure with a blood pressure cuff? Answer: NO (The earliest known uses of the sphygmomanometer, aka: the blood pressure cuff, was not until the early 1860's, and not widely used until 1896. George Washington died in 1799.)

Question 8: Was it possible for Mark Twain to donate to a Blood Bank? Answer: NO (This true for two reasons. #1 Mark Twain was not real, it was a pen-name used by Samuel Clemens. #2. Samuel Clemens, aka: Mark Twain, died in 1910. The first known "blood bank" were not used until 1917. They were created by Oswals Hope Robertson for use in France, while serving in the U.S. Medical Corps during World War I.

Question 9: Was it possible for Pocahontas to hear about William Harvey's description of the circulatory system of the blood? Answer: Possible but not likely. Dr. William Harvey first announced his discovery of the circulatory system of the blood in 1616. He later published his findings in 1628 in his thesis called, Exercitatio Anatomica de Motu Cordis et Sanguinis in Animalibus. Pocahontas, better known at the time by her Christian name of Rebecca Rolfe, died in 1617. Since Pocahontas and her husband John Rolfe did hang around the elite society of England at the time of Dr. Harvey announced his findings, it is possible Pocahontas may have heard about Dr. Harvey's discoveries by word-of-mouth only. If she had wanted to read his published works, it would have been to late.

Question 10: Was it possible for Gen. Sam Houston to be a volunteer in the American Red Cross?
Answer: YES (Sam Houston served as a General & later President for the Republic of Texas. He also served as U.S. Senator and later Governor for the State of Texas. He died in July of 1863. The American Red Cross was established by Clara Barton and a few associates in May of 1861. It's possible Sam Houston could have tried to travel north to be a volunteer for this new organization but he would have been a very old volunteer.

Hope you had fun reading and learning new things as much as we did!

Thursday, March 6, 2008

I Hate My Home Owner Insurance Company

I really do! I just hate them. Shortly after I first started blogging we had several things go wrong with our home. (God is Renovating Our House) -- We had our AC/Heating Unit go out, we had a major leak in our roof, that caused ceiling damage to our kitchen (which has yet to be fully repaired) and just other general stuff. Both times we filed and insurance claim just to have it denied by our insurance company.

About a month ago we had a hail storm and some major wind. We once again called our insurance to file a claim to check for damage to our roof. After their inspection, they once again denied any claim for damages. The day we got the letter from the insurance company, it rained fairly heavy in our area, and another leak was discovered. This time the leak is directly over LadyBug's and My bed. The same brown spot that appeared on our kitchen ceiling is now forming over our bed. I called our insurance company back and told them, that it had rained plenty of times since the last time we had our roof fixed (at our own expense), and we never discovered a leak. But the first time it rained after the hail/wind storm our roof is now leaking. I told them there must be some damage to the roof. They are supposed to call me back again to discuss my options about filing an appeal to the recent denial of our claim of damage.

Why can't the insurance company just pony up the dough and pay to fix our roof. We have the coverage to do this. Over the years we have paid them well over the $4,000+ required to fix our roof. I just can't understand why an insurance company would be so willing to take your money, yet so stingy in using to fix a legitimate problem with our home. I just hate our home owners insurance company. We may have to switch companies!

Any suggestions on roofing a house for yourself? I know it takes time and a few good friends. But It can be done right?

Wednesday, March 5, 2008

The Continuing Tale of the Little Indians That Want to be President

Super Tuesday "2" started with four,
Two are still neck and neck
One went out the door.

Ok, So my little Indian poems are a little stupid, but it's fun to do!

Yesterday my home state of Texas got its chance to vote in the primaries. We also had a caucus.
Yes there were three other states that also voted (Ohio, Rhode Island & Vermont).

For a Fox News summary of last nights events (click here).

For the Democrats, Hillary Clinton won big in the states of Texas, Ohio, and Rhode Island. Barack Obama won the state of Vermont and won a narrow victory in the Texas caucus. This still leaves Obama with a narrow lead in the delegate count.

For the Republicans, John McCain wrapped up the Republican nomination for President by winning all four states. Mike Huckabee officially withdrew from the race, congratulating McCain. This leaves McCain to focus primarily on his potential Democratic rival. President Bush is also expected to officially endorse McCain this afternoon.

So the race for the White House is down to three little Indians, unless you count Ralph Nadar.

Tuesday, March 4, 2008

Primary Day is Upon Us in Texas

Today is the Texas Primary. Signs and people promoting the remaining candidates are everywhere.

As far as Democrats are concerned: On the return trip from Corpus Christi, I saw many people standing on overpasses waving Barack Obama signs. Young people were standing on opposite sides of street corners holding signs for Obama and Hillary Clinton. (At least the younger voters are getting involved in the election process). Obama and Clinton are also eating up the airways. TV and Radio ads are on almost every break and I am getting a little tired of both of them. I have also received phone calls from supporters of Clinton and Obama (mainly Obama) reminding me to vote in the Democratic Primary! == "What if I'm not Democrat?", I asked one of them. There response was, "Well, maybe you should consider being one this year." I laughed and hung up.

As far as Republicans are concerned: I have seen some signs for McCain here and there, but haven't heard much from him as far as TV ads or other promotions. Huckabee's supporters had a "Honk and Wave Day" a few days ago. It was a little noisy for a while but they died out quickly. I mainly see Huckabee signs on bumper stickers. Ron Paul has signs everywhere, you would think he was the front runner! It seems the Republicans are saving their advertising budget for the "Big Election" in November.

I also found out you can actually vote twice in Texas. You heard me, vote twice! Texas apparently not only has a primary, where anyone can vote in any party's primary, but they also have a caucus. So after you vote in the morning, you can attend your party's caucus that evening and vote again to help you party leaders decide who to give their delegates to. How about that? Two votes in one day! (I learned that from an Obama telephone message left on my answering machine at home.)

Watch the news to see how our fair state votes. We will do our best to leave those of you in Indiana a choice when your primary comes around in May.

The # 1 Man in the Car

Prompted by fellow blogger Scott from...Honey I Fed The Kids, I need to tell you the rest of the story. There was a 5th Person in the car during my recent road trip. The #1 and only man in the car was myself. I was the designated driver of the trip and had the responsibility to make sure I found a Shell station to fill up the van when needed, as well as making sure my lady friends, found a decent place to eat on the road and provide plenty of breaks to go potty or to let Lady #1 get a smoke break.

I did participate in some of the conversations, but when they became a little controversial or started to lean towards more "lady like" subjects, I just plugged my wife's I-Pod into my ears and drove on. I did admit that I tend to lean towards Republican candidates, but there is a possibility I might vote in the Democratic Primary just to choose which candidate I would rather have in the White House. Being a veteran, I supported the war on terrorism, when it came up. This prompted a good "chastising" from Lady#1 about her views. Most of the time I just took the heat for not stopping in time to eat. But overall they thanked me for driving safe. At the conference I attempted to stay away from my lady friends and try to keep to myself. This was probably because of my OCD. But when we did get together we did have a good time, especially at Joe's Crab Shack on the Gulf. The view was nice and we watched the sunset over the bay. I did tend to eat the most when we did go out to eat. They were surprised a little fellow like me could put down the food.

Monday, March 3, 2008

Lesson's Learned from My Recent Road Trip

If you have been keeping track of my blogs, you know that I just completed a school related road trip to Corpus Christi and back. It turned out I traveled with 4 of my lady co-workers (all over 50 by the way!) instead of three. Here is what I learned about my lady friends.

Lady #1 (M.K.) -- She is originally from Poland. She was born in Poland while it was still under a Communist government controlled by the Soviet Union. She remembers being in elementary school, and the KGB coming in and asking if anyone had been to "church" on Sunday. If the students answered, "Yes", the KGB would take that student out of class and find out who the kids parents were. The kid would then go home to find one, or possibly both, of their parents had been arrested for violation of anti-religious laws. Later she applied to be a Dr. at a medical school. While working for the college's radio station, the KGB came in one evening, and forced her at gun-point to read Communist propaganda over the air-waves. This shook her up so much, she quit medical school. She ended up marrying an American who was working over-seas. He brought her to America and tried to treat her like a slave. She resisted, ended up divorcing him and applied for U.S. citizenship. She has been teaching in public schools and Adult Ed for about 20 years. She is very ANTI-BUSH and ANTI Iraq War, and she is a very nervous person when she cannot smoke like she wants to. She also loves to say, "Jesus Rodriguez" a lot when she wants to emphasize a point or gets frustrated. (Much like Sylvester the Cat says, "Sufferin' Succotash.") She is pro-Obama and tried her best to be a "side-seat driver", until I told her she was making me more nervous than the traffic.

Lady #2 -- (M.R) Our lady from Puerto Rico. She was our "Diva!" She attempted to control it all. She is very allergic to MSG and was very picky about where we chose to eat. She did restrain much of her criticism of others but once again told me "I dance like I am constipated," when I was swaying a little bit to some music at Joe's Crab Shack. Her family still lives in Puerto Rico but she is very glad and very proud to be an American. She supports John McCain, because she feels he is the best person to protect us from the terrorist, "Who will attack us again, if one of those crazy Democrats gets into office." She is also our party lady. She was the one attempting to drag us all out for a drink or two.

Lady # 3 -- (A.R.) This lady is originally from St. Lucia (a tiny island nation in the Caribbean). When asked how she met her husband, (a twenty year age difference by the way), she told us how she was working in a hotel in St. Lucia at age 18. Her husband came in, "He checked into the hotel and checked me out!" Her husband asked permission from her father to bring A.R. back to the states with him. With her father's blessing she traveled back to the U.S. with her future husband. After a year of courtship here in the states, they married. I also found out from her, that because St. Lucia is a British Commonwealth Nation, that citizens of St. Lucia, can go to college in England for free. She supports Hillary Clinton for president, because she supports the "universal health care system." Although she would vote for Huckabee if she had to vote Republican.

Lady # 4 -- (D.R.) She is born and raised Texan. She lives in the "South Side" of our fair town, in what she calls "the hood!" She managed to raise 4 kids in "the hood" and get them all graduated and most of them into college. Wow! She was the quietest of us all. She refused to get involved in the political debates but did call Lady #1 Anti-American for not supporting the war on terrorism. Didn't find out much more about her, because she slept most of the way there and back.

As for the Conference...there were some good sessions and bad sessions as with all conferences. I did learn that even the walls in the expensive hotels are not thick enough to block out all the noise that a bunch of teenagers can make. A group of teens attending a DECA Convention made all sorts of noises from about 10:30-1:00 every night. I called hotel security on them twice. One of the crazy teens attempted to climb onto the balcony of lady # 3, from a lower floor. Scared her to death.

All in all, the trip was not as bad a thought it would be, but I was glad to be home. After spending two 7 hour trips with these wonderful ladies, we were all getting on each others nerves. We just wanted to be home with our families. Or in the case of lady #1, her cats!

I will catch up on my other blog thoughts tonight after paying some bills, or maybe tomorrow. I need to spend some more quality time with my family.