LETTERS
      There may be nothing more instantly persuasive than the spoken
      word, but there is nothing capable of such eloquence, power or
      permanency  than the written word.  The spoken word is capable of
      modification and later denial - whereas the written word is a true
      record that will endure through time.  (Well...........anyway)

      Letters can indicate all sorts of feelings. A letter can bring news
      or information, good or bad - but no matter what, a letter is a
      recording that has an honesty that cannot be denied or later withdrawn,
      as verbal delivery can.

      So I have always placed a great deal of confidence in the written word
      as indeed our legal system does also.  That the pen is mightier than
      the sword (lastingly that is!) is beyond dispute.  By comparison,
      the spoken word is soon forgotten or amended (to suit in most cases).

      I've listed some letters here (serious and fun) that I have found and
      liked or written myself over the years and found personal satisfaction
      in writing them.

      Possibly you will see why.

                                --------------

      I never really liked the terminology "Old Farts" but this makes
      me feel better about it. And if you ain't one... bet you know one!

 I got this from an "Old Fart" friend of mine!


                               OLD FART PRIDE

      I'm passing this on as I did not want to be the only old fart receiving
      it.... Actually, it's not a bad thing to be called, as you will see.
      Old Farts are easy to spot at sporting events; during the playing of
      “Advance Australia Fair” or “God Save the Queen”. Old Farts remove their
      caps and stand at attention and sing along without embarrassment.  They 
      know the words and they believe in them.

      Old Farts remember World War II, Pearl Harbour ,  Guadalcanal , Normandy
      and Hitler. They remember the Atomic Age, the Korean War, The Cold War,
      the Jet Age, the Moon Landing and some will even remember gas street
      lamps, They remember the 50 plus Peacekeeping Missions from 1945 to 2005,
      not to mention  Vietnam, East Timor etc....

      If you bump into an Old Fart on the sidewalk he will apologize. If you
      pass an Old Fart on the street, he will nod or tip his cap to a lady.
      Old Farts trust strangers and are courteous to women.

      Old Farts hold the door for the next person and  when walking, make sure                
      the lady is on the inside (away from the traffic) for her protection.

      Old Farts get embarrassed if someone curses in front of women and
      children and they don't like any "explicit" scenes or obscene language
      on TV or in movies and they believe there is no need for it.

      Old Farts have moral courage and personal integrity. They seldom brag
      unless it's about their children or grandchildren.

      It's the Old Farts who know our great country is protected, not by
      politician's, but by the young men and women in the military serving
      their country much as they did once.

      This country needs Old Farts with their work ethic, their sense of
      responsibility and decency, pride in their country and moral values.

                      We need them now more than ever.

                          Thank God for Old Farts!                              

                                --------------


      This is a letter I found on my computer disks.  I edited it and sent it
      to a few people for a laugh - and it was.............


     Dear Dad and Mum,

     Hope you are thinking of me at this time. I hope you are both well and
enjoying yourself better than I am at the moment.

     I have tried to work out what I would like to do for a crust and have
tried my hand at several things (ie. this darned computer for one) but have
found nothing I particularly fancy and certainly nothing I can say I have
found luck with.

     About a week ago I thought I might just try my hand bricklaying again,
something I haven't done for a long time and maybe I could get myself fit.
I got a job with a builder I once knew and worked with him for several days.
     Yesterday he asked me could I finish a rooftop BBQ on a block of units he
was building at Kangaroo Point and then clean up when I had finished.
     So I went there and it was a six storey building and yes...the penthouse
was on top and I was working alone.
     When I finished the brick BBQ, I found I had about seventy bricks left
over. There was a block and tackle on the roof and  a wooden barrel which
they probably used to haul stuff up in.  So I reasoned I could use it to
lower the spare 70 bricks down in it.
    Securing the rope at ground level, I went up to the roof, swung the
barrel out, and loaded the bricks into it. Then I went back to the ground and
untied the rope, holding it tightly to insure a slow descent of the 300 kg
of bricks.  You will note that I weigh 90 kg.
    Due to my surprise to being jerked off the ground so suddenly, I lost my
presence of mind and forgot to let go of the rope.  Needless to say, I
proceeded at a rather rapid rate up the side of the building.
    In the vicinity of the third floor, I met the barrel coming down.  This
explains the fractured skull and broken collarbone I suffered!
    Slowed only slightly, I continued my rapid ascent, not stopping until
the fingers of my right hand were two knuckles deep into the pulley.
     Fortunately, by this time, I had regained my presence of mind and was
able to hold tightly to the rope in spite of my pain.
     At approximately the same time, however, the barrel of bricks hit the
ground.....and the bottom fell out of the barrel.  Devoid of the weight of
bricks, the barrel now weighed approximately 25 kilograms.
     I remind you again my weight is around 90 kilograms.    As you might
imagine, I began a rapid descent down the side of the building.
     In the vicinity of the third floor, I met the barrel coming up.  This
accounts for the two fractured ankles and the lacerations of my legs and
lower body.
     The encounter with the barrel slowed me enough to lessen my injuries when
I fell onto the pile of bricks and, fortunately, only three vertebrae were
cracked.
     At this stage I did remember you Dad.....and how many times you must
have moved bricks around and yes I thought - you were probably quite an
expert at it.    How I wished you were there!
     I am sorry to report, however, that as I lay there on the bricks - in
pain, unable to stand, and watching the empty barrel six stories above me -
I again lost my presence of mind......I LET GO OF THE ROPE......!!!!

     Well, I know you and Mum will not find it amusing to hear of my bad
fortune and I would like to take this opportunity to wish you both the
best for Christmas and the coming year.
     From your battered son.....sincerely

                                           Ted

                                oooooOOOOOOooooo


Around 1990 my wife and I drove down to Wooli,  on the coast, east
of Grafton, to visit an old real estate mate Fred his wife Dawn,
who leased the Wooli Hotel. there.

Fred had this wild idea:...
on the opposite side of the river was State forest or similar, that
according to Fred, was teeming with cattle and seemingly only
needed to be got to his side of the river to make a fortune from.

Fred's idea to make it economical and incredibly "simple" was to
round up a few, tie them all together and swim them across the river.

It was so hair brained an idea and Fred was so serious about it, I
got El to type the following letter to Fred on a trumped up official
looking New Zealand government letterhead as a joke.

Fred told me he got halfway through reading it before he realised
it was a joke and that at first he thought his idea must be sound if
the  NZ government were interested.  He had it hanging up on the pub
wall and he assured me his regulars had all read it through and they
all thought he was pretty smart for being chased by the government!


 To:  Mr F. Forbes
          C/-  Wooli Hotel
           WOOLI       NSW     2462
           Australia

            Dear Mr. Forbes
            I write to you on behalf of my department in the hope you can
see your way clear to impart  some of your expertise upon me that I
may use it on behalf of my Government and of the good of the people
of this country.

You no doubt appreciate the growing difficulty my country - and indeed
your own - has in competing in this world and in particular, the Asian
arena, where we all attempt to maintain the living standards we enjoy and
have thus far.

To gain some march on our competitors, is the reason for my contact with
you here.

You can imagine my delight when your Special Transport Advisor (who
understandably asked to remain anonymous) visited our offices recently
whilst on a goodwill Pacific cruise and told us of your revolutionary
livestock shipping methods, whereby a ship was not required.  Although
final details were only available from you, we have completed all the
preliminary preparations.

Suffice to say it was quite a sight to see nine million sheep in Auckland
harbour practicing long distance breast stroke.  The residents of the
North Island turned out en mass, as did many travellers arriving from
the South Island.  These preparations have also boosted our overseas
tourism figures by a factor of eighteen times. Thankyou for that too.

Survival rates of the sheep have improved dramatically since they have
learned to dodge harbour shipping.  For the record, we have also advice
that the recent ozone scare may be incorrect. Reports of larger icebergs
breaking up and melting into many smaller ones and drifting north from
Antarctica is quite explainable. They are more likely our sheep swimming
back from their training run.

Immediate benefits we have noticed here since implementing your program
are many.  Our country is now 1.3 metres higher out of the water - women
are now being noticed more by our men and our birth rates are increasing.

All this is primarily due to your idea Mr. Forbes, which I am reliably
informed is the "Woolly Experiment" and also includes the clearing of
State Forests and intensive grazing of up to fifty beasts per quarter acre,
along with safe disposal of hotel meals (?).

Could you kindly advise the next step of your assured proven method,
whereby the surviving seven million are held together by a single
elastic band for their export delivery swim. Also your plans for five
thousand navigation lights run by a single AA size torch battery.

Please reply at your earliest, as many of the sheep are becoming very
waterlogged and are losing weight on their plankton diet. Lambs born at sea
are not a pretty sight either, but baaaring further delays, the program will
be on target.

Yours faithfully


Pauline Lamb

Export and Advanced Technology Department


(Fred loved it - but I will never know if he was ever serious!)


                                ooooooOOOOOoooooo


(Sadly rather true.)

Dear Readers

Today we mourn the passing of a beloved old friend, Common Sense, who
has been with us for many years. No one knows for sure how old he was,
since his birth records were long ago lost in bureaucratic red tape.

He will be remembered as having cultivated such valuable lessons as:

- Knowing when to come in out of the rain;
- Why the early bird gets the worm;
- Life isn't always fair;
- and maybe it was my fault.

Common Sense lived by simple, sound financial policies... "don't spend
more than you can earn" and reliable strategies "adults and not
children are in charge" etc.

His health began to deteriorate rapidly when well-intentioned but
overbearing regulations were set in place. Reports of a 6-year-old boy
charged with sexual harassment for kissing a classmate; teens suspended
from school for using mouthwash after lunch; and a teacher fired for
reprimanding an unruly student, only worsened his condition.

Common Sense lost ground when parents attacked teachers for doing the
job that they themselves had failed to do in disciplining their unruly
children. It declined even further when schools were required to get
parental consent to administer sun lotion or an aspirin to a student;
but could not inform parents when a student became pregnant and wanted
to have an abortion.

Common Sense lost the will to live as the churches became businesses;
and criminals received better treatment than their victims.

Common Sense took a beating when you couldn't defend yourself from a
burglar in your own home and the burglar could sue you for assault.

Common Sense finally gave up the will to live, after a woman failed to
realize that a steaming cup of coffee was hot. She spilled a little in
her lap, and was promptly awarded a huge settlement.

Common Sense was preceded in death, by his parents, Truth and Trust,
by his wife, Discretion, by his daughter, Responsibility, and by his
son, Reason

He is survived by his 4 stepbrothers;    I Know My Rights,
                                          I Want It Now,
                                      Someone Else Is To Blame
                                                and
                                             I'm A Victim

Not many attended his funeral because so few realised he was gone.
         If you still remember him, pass this on.
         If not, join the majority and do nothing


                                ooooooOOOOOoooooo

Found this on the net........not as ironic, but funny anyway.


     Dear Son,
          I am writing this slow, 'cause I know you can't read fast.
          There are a few things happening here at home.  We don't live where
          we did when you left - you're father read in the paper that most
          car accidents happen within twenty miles of home, so we moved.
          I won't be able to send you the address because we moved into your
          cousins old house and they took the numbers with them so they
          wouldn't have to change their address.
          The new place has a washing machine!  It's in a small room that
          also has a shower in it.  The first day, I put four shirts in.  I
          pressed the lever and I haven't seen them since.
          The weather is nice here.  It rained twice this week.  Three days
          the first time and four days the second time.
          Remember that coat you wanted me to send you?  Well, your aunt said
          that it would be too heavy to send through the mail, so we cut the
          buttons off and put them in the pockets.
          Monday we got a bill from the funeral home.  It said if we don't
          make the last payment on Grandma's funeral ... up she comes ...
          Your father has a lovely new job.  He has over 500 men under him.
          He's cutting grass at the cemetery.
          Your brother's wife had a baby this morning.  We don't know whether
          it's a boy or a girl, so we don't know if you are an aunt or an
          uncle.
          Your uncle fell in the whiskey vat and drowned.  We cremated him.
          He burned for 3 days.
          Last week 3 of your friends went off the bridge in an open utility
          truck.  One was driving and the other two were riding in the back.
          The driver rolled down the window and swam to safety.  The other
          two drowned.  They couldn't get the tailgate down.
                   Not much else.  Write more often.
                                                    Love,
                                                         Mum
          PS. -- We would have sent money, but the envelope was already
          sealed.



                               ooooooOOOOO0ooooo

     I found this (bad copy of a copy) on a tattered piece of paper that
     was in a desk I was allocated in an office in 1973.  The words were
     hard to pick and the spelling errors and dictation atrocious.
˙
     I put it in a folder and promptly forgot about it until over twenty
     years later, when I moved back to Brisbane. I retyped it and ran it
     through a spell checker. I apologise for anything I may have overlooked
     correcting from the original.

          I hope you get half the buzz I get every time I read it.
     -----------------------------------------------------------------------
     IN 1854 THE GREAT WHITE CHIEF IN WASHINGTON MADE AN OFFER FOR
     A LARGE AREA OF INDIAN LAND AND PROMISED A "RESERVATION"  FOR THE
     INDIAN PEOPLE.    CHIEF SEATTLE'S REPLY HAS BEEN DESCRIBED AS THE MOST
     BEAUTIFUL AND PROFOUND STATEMENT ON THE ENVIRONMENT, EVER MADE.


     How can you buy or sell the sky, the warmth of the land?   The idea
     is strange to us. If we  do not own  the  freshness  of the air and
     the sparkle of the water, how can you buy them?

     Every part of this earth is sacred to my people.      Every shining
     pine needle, every sandy shore, every mist in the dark woods, every
     clearing and humming insect is holy  in the memory  and experience
     of my people.

     The sap which courses through the trees carries the memories of
     the red man. The white mans dead forget the country of their
     birth when they go to walk among the stars.

     Our dead never forget this beautiful earth, for it is the mother
     of the red man.  We are part of the earth and it is part of us.

     As perfumed flowers are our sisters - the deer, the horse, the
     great eagle - these are our brothers. The rocky crests, the juices
     in the meadows, the body heat of the pony and man - all belong
     in the same family.

     So, when the Great White Chief in Washington sends word that he wishes
     to buy our land, he asks much of us. The great White Chief sends word
     he will reserve us a place so that we can live comfortably to ourselves.

     He will be our father and we will be his children. So we will
     consider your offer to buy our land. But it will not be easy.
     For this land is sacred to us.

     This shining water that moves on the streams and rivers is not
     just water but the blood of our ancestors. If we sell you land
     you must remember that it is sacred and you must teach your children
     that it is sacred and that each ghostly reflection in the clear
     water of the lakes tells of events and memories in the life of
     my people. The water's murmur is the voice of my fathers father.

     The rivers are our brothers, they quench our thirst. The rivers
     carry our canoes and feed our children. If we sell you our land
     you must remember to teach your children that the rivers are
     our brothers and yours and you must henceforth give the rivers
     the kindness you would give any brother.

     We know that the white man does not understand our ways. One portion
     of land to him is the same as the next for he is a stranger who
     comes in the night and takes from the land whatever he needs.

     The earth is not his brother - but his enemy - and when he has conquered
     it he moves on. He leaves his fathers graves behind and he does
     not care.  He kidnaps the earth from his children and he does
     not care.

     His fathers grave and his children's birthright are forgotten.
     He treats his mother the earth and his brother the sky, as things
     to be bought, plundered and sold - like sheep or bright beads. But
     perhaps it is because the red man is savage he does not understand.

     There is no quiet place in the white mans cities.  No place to
     hear the unfurling of the leaves in spring, or the rustle of an insects
     wings. But perhaps it is because I am a savage, I do not understand.

     The chatter only seems to insult the ears. And what is there to life
     if a man cannot hear the lonely cry of the whippoorwill or the
     arguments of the frogs around a pond at night?  I am a red man
     and do not understand.

     The red man prefers the soft sound of the wind darting over the face
     of  a pond and the smell of the wind itself, cleansed by a midday
     rain, or scented with the pinion pine. The air is precious to the
     red man, for all things share the same breath - the beast, the
     tree, the man - they all share the same breath.

     The white man does not seem to notice the air he breathes.  Like
     a man dying for many days, he is numb to the stench. But if we
     sell you our land you must remember that the air is precious to
     us and the air shares its spirit with all the life it supports.

     The wind that gave our grandfather his first breath also receives
     his last sigh and if we sell you our land you must keep it apart
     and sacred as a place where even the white man can go to taste
     the wind that is sweetened by the meadow's flowers.

     So we will consider your offer to buy our land. If we decide to
     accept, I will make one condition. The white man must treat the
     beast of this land as his brothers.

     I am a savage and I do not understand any other way. I have seen
     a thousand rotting buffaloes on the prairie, left by the white man
     who shoots them from a passing train. I am a savage and I do not
     understand how the smoking iron horse can be more important than
     than the buffalo that we kill only to stay alive.

     What is man without the beasts? If all the beasts were gone, man
     would die from a great loneliness of spirit. For whatever happens
     to the beasts, soon happens to man.  All things are connected.

     You must teach your children that the earth beneath their feet
     is the ashes of our grandfathers, so that they will respect the
     land. Tell your children that the earth is rich with the lives
     of our kin.

     Teach your children what we have taught our children, that the
     earth is our mother and whatever befalls the earth befalls the sons
     of the earth. If man spit upon the ground he spits upon himself.

     This we know. The earth does not belong to man - man belongs to
     the earth.  This we know. All things are connected like the blood
     which unites one family.  All things are connected.

     Whatever befalls the earth befalls the sons of the earth.  Man
     did not weave the web of life,  he is only a strand in it. Whatever
     he does to the web, he does to himself.

     Even the white man, whose God walks and talks with him as friend
     to friend cannot be exempt from the common destiny. We may be
     brothers after all.  We shall see.

     One thing we know - which the white man may one day discover - our
     God is the same God.  You may think now that you own Him as
     you wish to own our land, but you cannot. He is the God of man
     and His compassion is equal for the red and the white man.

     This earth is precious to Him and to harm the earth is to heap
     contempt on its creator.  The white man too shall pass, perhaps sooner
     than all other tribes. Contaminate your bed and you will one
     night suffocate in your own waste.

     But in your perishing you will shine brightly, fired by the strength
     of the God who brought you to this land and for some special purpose
     gave you dominion over this land and over the red man. That destiny
     is a mystery to us, for we do not understand when the buffalo are
     all slaughtered, the wild horses are tamed, the secret corners
     of the forest heavy with the scent of many men and the view of the
     ripe hills blotted by talking wires.

     Where will be the thicket?  Gone.  Where will be the eagle?  Gone.

     The end of living and the beginning of survival!


        (This guy was a gem)


                               oooooOOOOOooooo

     Written by an observant African:

   Dear white fella,
       Couple things you should know
       When I born, I black
       When I grow up, I black
       When I go in sun, I black
          and I stay black
       When I cold, I black
       When I scared, I black
       When I sick, I black
       And when I die, I still black.
  You white fella,
       When you born, you pink
       When you grow up, you white
       When you go in sun, you red
          then you turn brown
       When you cold, you blue
       When you scared, you yellow
       When you sick, you green.
       And when you die, you grey.
              And you have the hide to call me colored?



                               oooooOOOOOooooo


      This is a funny bit of work I downloaded from the internet.
      The spelling wasn't real good as it probably hadn't been spell checked.
      I rebuilt it and changed a few things around to add more humour and
      hopefully retain the subtlety that makes it so funny.
      So.......Edited  by Ted and adapted from an article by Mikolas Vamos...
      (a Hungarian writer who spent a year at the Yale School of Drama.)

                      How I'll Become an American

I have been Hungarian for 38 years. I'll try something else for the next 38.
I'll try to be an American for instance - North American, I mean.    As an
American, I'll speak English fluently. I'll make American speech mistakes
instead of Hungarian speech mistakes............and I'll call them slang.
As an American, I'll have a credit card (or two).  I'll misuse them and run
them to their limit and only be able to pay the fees.   I'll apply for other
cards right away. Golden Visa. Golden American. Golden Gate - so I can
overdraw on them too.
And I'll buy a car, a great American car. Then I'll sell my American car
and buy a smaller West German car because it's reliable and doesn't use so
much gasoline.   Later, I'll sell it and buy a smaller Japanese car with a
computer aboard. Then I'll sell it and buy a camper. When I sell the camper
I'll buy a bicycle.   Like an American, I will never walk if I can avoid it.
As an American, I'll buy a dog, a cat,  a goat,  maybe a white whale........
or even some stones as pets.
I'll live in my own house.  It will be all mine - except kinda for the
99 percent mortgage owing on it.   Later  I'll sell my house and buy a condo.
I'll then sell my condo and buy a mobile home.  I'll sell my mobile home and
buy an igloo.  As an American, I'll be clever: I'll sell my igloo and buy a
tent when I move to Florida from Alaska.
Anyway, I'll move a lot. And I'll buy the best dishwasher, microwave, dryer
and hi-fi in the world (which is the USA).  I'll have warranty for all - or
my money back.    I'll use automatic toothbrushes, egg boilers, garage doors
and bank tellers.   I'll call every single phone number starting with 1-800.
I'll buy the fastest food I can get and I'll eat it very slowly so I dont put
weight on quickly while I watch TV.  Of course, I'll buy a VCR. I'll watch
the taped programs and then retape them.  Sometimes, I'll retape them BEFORE
watching them.
As an American, I'll have an answering machine too. The outgoing message
will promise that I'll "call you back as soon as possible"..............but
I wont.
If I happen to answer the phone personally,  I'll tell you that I can't talk
now because I have a long-distance call on the other line and I'll call you
back as soon as possible,  then........... ( see above ).
And I'll get a job.   I'll always be looking for a better job, but I won't
get the job I want.   I'll work really hard since,  as an American,  I'll
want to be rich.  I'll always be in a hurry:  Time is Money.   Unfortunately
my time won't be worth as much money as my bosses' time.   Sometimes, I'll
have some time to spare but I still won't have enough money.  Then I'll start
to hate the wisdom of that saying.
As an American, sometimes I'll be badly depressed.    I'll be the patient of
12 psychiatrists, and I'll be disappointed with all of them. I'll try to
change my life a little bit.........I'll try to exchange my wives, my cars,
my lovers, my houses, my children, my jobs and my pets.  Sometimes, I'll
exchange a few dollars into other currencies and I'll travel to Europe,
Hawaii, Tunisia, Martinique and Japan.
I'll set a good example and leave my gun at home.
I'll be happy to see that people all over the world are jealous of us
Americans. I'll take at least 2000 snapshots on each trip and ask a lot of
questions..... which I'll promptly forget the answers to.   I'll also buy a
video camera and shoot everywhere because Americans "shooting" makes people
nervous. I'll look at the tapes, photos and slides, and I'll try to remember
my experiences when I have time and if I'm in the mood,   but I won't have
time or be in the mood because I'll be depressed again and off to see my
shrinks as soon as I get back.
I'll smoke cigarettes.   Then I'll be afraid of cancer and I'll stop.   I'll
smoke cigars and opium.   I'll take a breather and then try LSD and heroin
and cocaine and marijuana.  Then crack to top it all off.   I'll try to stop
but I won't be able.  I'll call 1-800 HELP.   If nothing helps, I'll have
some gay experiences and maybe swing or have a sex change operation.   And if
I am still unhappy, I'll make the final effort............. I'll try to read
a book.   I'll buy some best sellers.  I'll prefer James A. Michener or books
about America.   My second favorite will be the "How to Be Rich in Seven
Weeks".    I'll try to follow this advice spasmodically over the next seven
years.
I'll always be concerned about my health as an American. I won't eat anything
but health food until it makes me ill.  From time to time, I'll read in the
paper that I should stop eating meat, sugar, bread, fiber, grains, iron and
toothpaste AND that I should stop drinking milk, soda, coffee and  acid rain.
I'll try to follow this advice too,  but then I'll read in the paper that
these are all OK again.   But I'll still be puzzled - "Hey, I don't even know
what cholesterol is !" - yet, I'll still stick to decaf coffee, sugar-free
cookies, salt-free butter and lead- free gasoline.
I'll believe that proper diet and exercise make life longer. I'll go jogging
in the park everyday until I am mugged twice and knocked down three times...
...which means after about a week I'll just exercise in my room,  but this
will also increase my appetite.    I'll go on several diets, and little by
little I'll reach eighteen stone.
As an American, I'll buy a new TV every time a larger screen appears on the
market.     In the end, the screen will be larger than the room - but hey,
that's OK cause I'll just  put my living room into the TV.   Anyway, my living
room will be very much like the living rooms you can see on the screen so
no one will notice.    My life won't differ much from the lives you can see
on the soaps either - nobody will complain and I  won't complain either.
  I'll always smile.................Why?

  Because I'll be an American.......and people will be jealous of me.



                              oooooOOOOOooooo

    Pretty much in the same vein as the one above,  this one was worth
       keeping as well

American Advisory

   The following advisory for American travellers heading for France was
   compiled from information provided by the US State Department, the Central
    Intelligence Agency, the US Chamber of Commerce, the Food and Drug
    Administration, the Centres for Disease Control, and some very expensive
    spy satellites that the French don't know about.  It is intended as a
    guide for American travellers only.

   General Overview
   France is a medium-sized foreign country situated in the continent of
   Europe.  It is an important member of the world community, though not
   nearly as important as it  thinks.  It is bounded by Germany, Spain,
   Switzerland and some smaller nations of no particular consequence and
   with not very good shopping.

   France is a very old country with many treasures, such as the Louvre and
   Euro Disney. Among its contributions to western civilization are champagne,
   Camembert  cheese, blind panic and the guillotine.

   Although France likes to think of itself as a modern nation, air
   conditioning is little used and it is next to impossible to get decent
   Mexican food.  One continuing  exasperation for American visitors is that
   the people wilfully persist in speaking French, though many will speak
   English if shouted at.  As in any foreign country -  watch your change at
   all times and cars driven on the wrong side of the road.


Public Holidays
France has more holidays than any other nation in the world. Among its 361
national holidays are 197 saints' days, 37 National Liberation Days, 16
Declaration of Republic Days, 54 Return of Charles de Gaulle in Triumph as
if he Won the War Single-Handed Days, 18 Napoleon Sent into Exile Days, 17
Napoleon Called Back from Exile Days, and 112 France is Great and the Rest
of the World is Rubbish Days. Other important holidays are National Nuclear
Bomb Day (January 12), the Feast of St. Brigitte Bardot Day (March 1), and
National Guillotine Day (November 12).


The People
France has a population of 54 million people, most of whom drink and smoke a
great deal, drive like lunatics, are dangerously oversexed, and have no
concept of  standing patiently in line.  The French people are in general
gloomy, temperamental, proud, arrogant, aloof, and undisciplined; and those
are their good points.

Most French citizens are Roman Catholic, though you would hardly guess it
from their behaviour.  Many people are communists, and topless sunbathing is
common on or off the beach.
Men sometimes have girls' names like Marie, and they kiss each other when
they hand out bravery medals or score goals.
American tourists are advised to travel in groups and to wear baseball caps
and colorful trousers for comfort and mutual recognition.


Economy
France has a large and diversified economy, second only to Germany's in
Europe, which is surprising because the people hardly work at all. If they are
not spending four hours dawdling over lunch, they  are on strike and blocking
the roads with their trucks and tractors.  France's principal exports, in
order of importance to the economy, are wine, nuclear weapons, perfume,
guided missiles, champagne, high-calibre weaponry, grenade launchers, land
mines, tanks, attack aircraft, miscellaneous armaments ...... and cheese.


Safety
In general, France is a safe destination, though travellers are advised that,
from time to time, it is invaded by Germany.  By tradition, the French
surrender more or less at once knowing the Germans wont stay for long and
will leave wondering why they went there in the first place.  A tunnel
connecting France to Britain beneath the English Channel was opened recently
to make it easier for the French Government to flee to London during these
times.
Apart from a temporary shortage of Scotch whisky and increased difficulty in
getting baseball scores and stock market reports then, life for the visitor
generally goes on much as before.

History
France was discovered by Charlemagne in the Dark Ages.  Other important
historical figures are Louis XIV, Joan of Arc, The Hunchback of Notre Dame,
Jacques Cousteau and  Charles de Gaulle, who was President for many years and
is now used as an airport.

Government
The French form of government is democratic but noisy.  Elections are held
more or less continuously, and always result in a run-off. For administrative
purposes, the  country is divided into regions, departments, district
municipalities, cantons, communes, villages, cafes, brothels, and floor tiles.

Parliament consists of two chambers, the Upper and Lower (though, confusingly,
they are both on the ground floor), whose members are either Gaullists or
communists, neither of whom is to be trusted, frankly.    Parliament's
principal pre-occupations are setting off atomic bombs in the South Pacific,
and acting indignant when anyone complains about it.

According to the most current State Department intelligence, the President
now is someone named Jacques..... though further information is not available
at this time.

Culture
The French pride themselves on their culture, though it is not easy to see
why.  All their songs sound the same, and they have hardly ever made a movie
that you would want to watch for anything but the nude scenes.  And nothing,
of course, is more boring than a French novel.
Eating habits are as foreign as the French themselves for, as many well
travelled gardeners will tell you, snail bait is banned in France because they
actually eat the little suckers, which they refer to as "le slugs", more or
less as we do to our ammunition.  But lets face it ...... a snail is just a
slug with a shell on its back no matter how much garlic butter you put on it.
Croissants, on the other hand, are excellent......though it's impossible for
most Americans to pronounce this word without accompanied spitting.
In general, travellers are advised to stick to cheeseburgers at leading hotels
such as the Sheraton and Holiday Inn.

Conclusion
France enjoys a rich history, a picturesque and varied landscape, and a
temperate climate.  In short, it would be a very nice country if it weren't
inhabited by French people.

The best thing that can be said for France is that it's not Germany.

Remember, no one ordered you to go abroad.  Personally, we always take our
holidays on the Gold Coast Australia , and you would be better advised to do
so as well.

THANK YOU........ AND GOOD LUCK.


Footnote :
When visiting France, all US citizens should carry a wrapped swastika in
their luggage for open display in case of the before-mentioned occasional
invasion occurring. In ALL instances, and especially during any hostilities,
you are strongly advised NOT to wave an American or similarly coloured flag
in the face of invaders or defenders.


                             oooooOOOOOooooo

I think everyone should contain any material they generate so as to
remain fit for decent human consumption.  The following article can be
interpreted as bordering this conception, but I feel the adult humour
content is an overriding factor in any such estimation so finely made.

Innocent gift
-------------
  A young man wanted to purchase a gift for his new sweetheart's
birthday, and as they had not been dating very long, after careful
consideration, he decided a pair of gloves would strike the right note:
romantic, but not too personal. Accompanied by his sweetheart's younger
sister, he went to Nordstrom and bought a pair of white gloves. The sister
purchased a pair of panties for herself. During the wrapping, the clerk
mixed up the items and the sister got the gloves and the sweetheart got the
panties. Without checking the contents, the young man sealed the package and
sent it to his sweetheart with the following note:

        "I chose these because I noticed that you are not in the habit of
wearing any when we go out in the evening. If it had not been for your sister,
I would have chosen the long ones with the buttons, but she wears short ones
that are easier to remove. "These are a delicate shade, but the lady I bought
them from showed me the pair she had been wearing for the past three weeks
and they were hardly soiled. I had her try yours on for me and she looked
really smart. "I wish I was there to put them on for you the first time, as
no doubt other hands will come in contact with them before I have a chance
to see you again. "When you take them off, remember to hang them near the
fire before putting them away as they will naturally be a little damp from
wearing. "Just think how many times I will kiss them during the coming year.
I hope you will wear them for me on Friday night that all will see how smart
you look in them.

All my love.

"P.S. The latest style is to wear them
folded down with a little fur showing."


                             oooooOOOOOooooo


How to Handle those Rejection Letters

[Date Today]
Dear Mr. Kennelly:

Thank you for your letter of ................... After careful consideration
I regret to inform you that I am unable to accept your refusal to offer me
employment with your firm. This year I have been particularly fortunate in
receiving an unusually large number of rejection letters.

With such a varied and promising field of candidates it is impossible for
me to accept all refusals.

Despite some outstanding and well qualified previous experience in rejecting
applicants, I find that your rejection letter does not meet with my needs at
this time.

Therefore, I will be initiating employment with your firm within the next 14
days and look forward to  your reply confirming a suitable date within that
time.

Congratulations.

Yours sincerely

.......................................

                              oooooOOOOOooooo

Somewhere along the line since 1990 (approx) I lost contact with my
 friends Fred and Dawn from Wooli, as they sold the hotel there and
 moved to Tweed Heads.  Around the mid 90's my letters ceased being
 answered and I moved around the same time.

In July 2001 I received an email from a young lady in the USA telling
 me she had been reading my pages and found her father was mentioned
 in there.

It was Fred and Dawns daughter ...... What a small world.

With the phone number she gave I rang my friends and established contact
 with them once more.

I immediately dispatched the following letter to them in an attempt to
 "catch up" a little!


TURDZESTAN
          Turdzestan is a small and poor principality wedged in
between Iran and Turkey toward the northern end of Syria.

The history of Turdzestan and its people is closely parallel to that
of the Khurds of northern Iraq apart from the fact that the Turdz
have their own homeland and the Khurds still fight for theirs.

The Turdz are closely akin to the neighboring Turks.

Because of their countries insecure geological position and low
standard of living, Turdz have the greatest per capita emigration
of their population seeking more security and a higher standard of
living in many other parts of the world.  There are records of Turdz
settling around Europe and Africa as far back as the sixth century.

The Turdz, or people from Turdzestan, were people of healthy stock.
They were tall, with long straight hair; the men were healthy, bright
and robust, the women lithe, bold and beautiful.

The first Turds arrived on American shores in fifteen eighty-nine,
one year after the defeat of the Spanish Armada. They were unjustly
blamed for the defeat of the Spanish Fleet when a Spanish admiral
remarked, "No wonder we lost with a bunch of Turdz on our cannons"

The Turdz were never accepted in English speaking countries, in
particular, because of their name.....and indeed, over many centuries
since the word Turdz  was first adapted into the English vocabulary,
it is now spelled slightly differently, but with the same meaning.

When they went to America, they also had trouble with lodgings. Most
boarding  houses had a sign on the front, "No Turdz".......and The
Turdzmen naturally felt rejected....which was the reason most returned
to Turdzestan. Even those who decided to return had a rough time going
back.    With the treatment they got from some Americans..... they
developed a huge ego problem which was seized on by many .........and
they suffered accordingly.

An instance for one was.....whenever they boarded a boat they would
( with the good manner they were known for) ask, "Where do the Turdz
go?".   You can imagine the reply they were given........and little
wonder the Turdz were well known for spending their time whilst at sea,
huddled in the men's and ladies rooms. Once back in their  homeland,
however, their lot became a much happier one.

Today, the people of Turdzestan are a proud race of people and have
developed a unique national greeting within their country that no
other country in the world has or is likely to.

As they pass one another in the streets of their native Turdzestan
.....you will hear these proud people solemnly and with great pride
declare..."I'm proud to be a Turd!"

      Dear citizen,
      If you are moved by the above account and wish to contribute to
the worthy cause of helping a Turd,  please send your (cash preferably) 
donations to:
        The Fund Secretary,
        "HELP A TURD FUND"
          (my address)

      All donors of cash will receive honorary citizenship papers or
      "wipes", to show that you too are a Turd.
                                             Thankyou
                                             Teddy Ben Layden


     (I have nothing to report further.....!)


                              oooooOOOOOooooo



    I just wish I had kept more.....because there were lots.......

©Ted Middleton 2007.

Home Page