Tag Archives: list

Inspirational Quotes

In By George’s endless search for the most remarkable thoughts and moving quotes, we came across the “Top 10 Inspirational Quotes” from the About.com Guide. Here are a great “top 10” bons mots.


  1. Twenty years from now you will be more disappointed by the things that you didn’t do than by the ones you did do. So throw off the bowlines. Sail away from the safe harbor. Catch the trade winds in your sails. Explore. Dream. Discover. – Mark Twain
  2. In bed my real love has always been the sleep that rescued me by allowing me to dream. – Luigi Pirandello
  3. Take the first step in faith. You don’t have to see the whole staircase, just take the first step. – Dr. Martin Luther King Jr.
  4. People often say that motivation doesn’t last. Well, neither does bathing – that’s why we recommend it daily. – Zig Ziglar
  5. Only those who will risk going too far can possibly find out how far one can go. – T. S. Elliot
  6. All that we are is the result of what we have thought. – Buddha
  7. Do not go where the path may lead, go instead where there is no path and leave a trail. – Ralph Waldo Emerson
  8. We know nothing about motivation. All we can do is write books about it. – Peter F. Drucker
  9. If you don’t go after what you want, you’ll never have it. If you don’t ask, the answer is always no. If you don’t step forward, you’re always in the same place. – Nora Roberts
  10. Begin with the end in mind. – Stephen Covey


SOURCE: About.com

Chris George, providing reliable PR counsel and effective advocacy. Need a go-to writer and experienced communicator? 613-983-0801 @ CG&A COMMUNICATIONS.


Top-10 Unanswerable Questions

The Internet search engine Ask Jeeves specializes in answering the toughest, most obscure questions Web surfers can throw at it. But even Jeeves can get stumped sometimes and it has now compiled what it calls the top 10 unanswerable questions. The list is based on more than 1 billion queries to the site since it began in 2000 through to 2010. As you will read, it includes both the weighty and the trivial.


Jeeves’ Unanswerables


  1. What is the meaning of life?
  2. Is there a God?
  3. Do blondes have more fun?
  4. What is the best diet?
  5. Is there anybody out there?
  6. Who is the most famous person in the world?
  7. What is love?
  8. What is the secret to happiness?
  9. Did Tony Soprano die?
  10. How long will I live?


The list of “unanswerables” is from a BBC report on the Ask Jeeves site.

Chris George, providing reliable PR counsel and effective advocacy. Need a go-to writer and experienced communicator? Call 613-983-0801 @ CG&A COMMUNICATIONS.


25 Remarkable Quotes to Motivate

Brian Vaszily, founder and editor in chief of IntenseExperiences.com, has provided us with his 25 greatest motivational quotes. Here they are (counted down to Vaszily’s #1 selection):

25) Many of the things you can count, don’t count. Many of the things you can’t count, really count. – Albert Einstein

24) Everything that irritates us about others can lead us to an understanding of ourselves. – Carl Jung

23) It is not what we take up, but what we give up, that makes us rich. – Henry Ward Beecher

22) He who cannot forgive others destroys a bridge over which he himself must pass. – George Herbert

21) It takes courage to grow up and turn out to be who you really are. – e.e. cummings

20) In order to be effective truth must penetrate like an arrow — and that is likely to hurt. – Wei Wu Wei

19) It is amazing what you can accomplish if you do not care who gets the credit. – Harry Truman

18) The longer you stay in one place, the greater your chance of disillusionment. – Art Spander

17) The dreamers are the saviors of the world. – James Allen

16) I have learned to be content in whatever circumstances I am in. – The Bible, Phillipians 4:11

15) Don’t ask what the world needs. Ask what makes you come alive, and go do it. Because what the world needs is people who have come alive. – Howard Thurman

14) It is never too late to be what you might have been. – George Eliot

13) Remember that everyone you meet is afraid of something, loves something, and has lost something. – H. Jackson Brown Jr.

12) What may be done at any time will be done at no time. – Scottish Proverb

11) The only people with whom you should try to get even are those who have helped you. – – John E. Southard

10) How does one become a butterfly? You must want to fly so much that you are willing to give up being a caterpillar. – Trina Paulus

9) In times like these it helps to recall there have always been times like these. – Paul Harvey

8  Say what you want to say when you have the feeling and the chance. My greatest regrets are the things I did not do, the opportunities missed and the things unsaid. – Jim Keller

7) We read the world wrong and say that it deceives us. – Rabindranth Tagore

6) You can have anything you want if you are willing to give up the belief that you can’t have it. – Robert Anthony

5) If we listened to our intellect, we’d never have a love affair. We’d never have a friendship. We’d never go into business, because we’d be too cynical. Well, that’s nonsense. You’ve got to jump off cliffs all the time and build your wings on the way down. – Annie Dillard

4) The true measure of an individual is how he treats a person who can do him absolutely no good. – Ann Landers

3) Pain is inevitable, but misery is optional. We cannot avoid pain, but we can avoid joy. – Tim Hansel

2) The creation of a thousand forests is in one acorn. – Ralph Waldo Emerson

1) The price of anything is the amount of life you exchange for it. – Henry David Thoreau


SOURCE:  http://www.intenseexperiences.com/brian-vaszily.html

Chris George, providing reliable PR counsel and effective advocacy. Need a go-to writer and experienced communicator? 613-983-0801 @ CG&A COMMUNICATIONS.

Writers Pick Top-10 Books of All Time


The Top Ten: Writers Pick Their Favorite Books is a readers’ collection of dream lists.

It is the ultimate guide to the world’s greatest books – as picked by writers such as Norman Mailer, Annie Proulx, Stephen King, Jonathan Franzen, Claire Messud, Margaret Drabble, Michael Chabon and Peter Carey. The Top Ten includes summaries of 544 books-each of which is considered to be among the ten greatest books ever written by at least one leading writer. You can get this treasure from Amazon (where else?!)

Here are three intriguing lists from that book.



  1. Lolita by Vladimir Nabokov
  2. The Great Gatsby by F. Scott Fitzgerald
  3. In Search of Lost Time by Marcel Proust
  4. Ulysses by James Joyce
  5. Dubliners by James Joyce
  6. One Hundred Years of Solitude by Gabriel Garcia Marquez
  7. The Sound and the Fury by William Faulkner
  8. To The Lighthouse by Virginia Woolf
  9. The complete stories of Flannery O’Connor
  10. Pale Fire by Vladimir Nabokov



  1. Anna Karenina by Leo Tolstoy
  2. Madame Bovary by Gustave Flaubert
  3. War and Peace by Leo Tolstoy
  4. The Adventures of Huckleberry Finn by Mark Twain
  5. The stories of Anton Chekhov
  6. Middlemarch by George Eliot
  7. Moby-Dick by Herman Melville
  8. Great Expectations by Charles Dickens
  9. Crime and Punishment by Fyodor Dostoevsky
  10. Emma by Jane Austen



  1. William Shakespeare — 11
  2. William Faulkner — 6
  3. Henry James — 6
  4. Jane Austen — 5
  5. Charles Dickens — 5
  6. Fyodor Dostoevsky — 5
  7. Ernest Hemingway — 5
  8. Franz Kafka — 5
  9. (tie) James Joyce, Thomas Mann, Vladimir Nabokov, Mark Twain, Virginia Woolf — 4


Read more about this book at Brian Pickings.


31 traits of great leaders


Industrialist Andrew Carnegie was the wealthiest man on the planet in the early 20th century and was a student of what it takes to achieve greatness. In 1908, he met with the journalist Napoleon Hill who collected and edited notes from initial conversations with Carnegie. In 1948, Hill published “Think Your Way to Wealth” which was based on Carnegie’s beliefs that successful leaders exemplify a set of specific traits.

Here is a summary of the 31 traits Carnegie identified with great leaders.


1. They have a definite purpose and a definite plan for attaining it. Great leaders are always working toward an overarching goal.
2. They have a motive that continuously drives them. “Nothing great is ever achieved without a definitive motive.”
3. They surround themselves with talented people who share their vision.
4. They are able to be self-reliant.
5. They have intense self-discipline.
6. They are persistent.
7. They are creative. “Able leaders must be eternally seeking new and better ways of doing things. They must be on the lookout for new ideas and new opportunities to attain the object of their labors.”
8. They are decisive. It’s dangerous to be impulsive, but it is better to make an imperfect decision than none at all.
9. They collect all possible facts before making judgments.
10. They are enthusiastic.
11. They are fair.
12. They have an open mind. “The man with a closed mind does not inspire the confidence of his associates. Without confidence great leadership is an impossibility.”
13. They go beyond what is required of them.
14. They are tactful.
15. They listen more than they speak.
16. They pay attention to detail.
17. They are determined.
18. They can take criticism. “Bigness overlooks the smallness of criticism and carries on.”
19. They know when to restrain themselves.
20. They are loyal.
21. They know when to speak frankly.
22. They understand others’ motivations.
23. They are exceptionally likable.
24. They are focused. “Concentrated effort gives one power that can be attained in no other way.”
25. They learn from mistakes.
26. They assume responsibility for the mistakes of their subordinates.
27. They recognize the achievements of others.
28. They treat others the way they would like to be treated.
29. They are optimistic.
30. They assume responsibility for the actions of their entire team.
31. They are able to act without being guided by emotion.


To read more on this list, click to the full article in the Financial Post Business.

Also, here is another post regarding Andrew Carnegie’s wisdom in the By George Journal: “Carnegie’s 10 Rules of Success

Alinsky’s Rules

There have been a few reports in the American media recently that have described the clandestine tactics of Saul Alinsky – how they have served the campaigns of President Barack Obama and are present in the current presidential runs: “At this very moment Alinsky’s Rules for Radicals are being employed by the Left, again, with great efficacy.”  Forbes magazine points to Donald Trump’s campaign as an example “to push their own proposed societal changes and the political platforms designed to make them a reality.”

By way of background, in 1971, Saul Alinsky wrote an entertaining classic on grassroots organizing titled Rules for Radicals. Above and beyond Machiavelli’s tome The Prince, this book provides some of the best advice on confrontational tactics for campaign teams and candidates. Many have documented how President Obama and Democratic presidential candidate Hillary Clinton have taken pages from Alinsky’s playbook. It is interesting to think now right-wing standard bearer Trump is using Alinsky tactics…

And, though the link has never been directly made, there are no doubt Alinsky disciples in our Canadian circles of politicos. If you read through the rules, you can see hints of Alinsky’s instruction in the campaign maneuvering of the Canadian federal Parties – particularly the Liberal effort.

By George provides you with the list of rules from Saul Alinsky’s Rules for Radicals. Refer to them in the months ahead when you are attempting to see the rationale or motivation for the federal Parties’ campaign thrusts.

Rules for Radicals

Rule 1: Power is not only what you have, but what an opponent thinks you have. If your organization is small, hide your numbers in the dark and raise a din that will make everyone think you have many more people than you do.

Rule 2: Never go outside the experience of your people. The result is confusion, fear, and retreat. Feeling secure adds to the backbone of anyone.

Rule 3: Whenever possible, go outside the experience of an opponent. Look for ways to increase insecurity, anxiety and uncertainty.

Rule 4: Make opponents live up to their own book of rules. “You can kill them with this, for they can no more obey their own rules than the Christian church can live up to Christianity.”

Rule 5: Ridicule is man’s most potent weapon. It’s hard to counterattack as there is no defense. It’s irrational. It’s infuriating. It also works as a key pressure point to force the enemy into concessions.

Rule 6: A good tactic is one your people enjoy. “If your people aren’t having a ball doing it, there is something very wrong with the tactic.”

Rule 7: A tactic that drags on for too long becomes a drag. Commitment may become ritualistic as people turn to other issues.

Rule 8: Keep the pressure on. Use different tactics and actions and use all events of the period for your purpose. “The major premise for tactics is the development of operations that will maintain a constant pressure upon the opposition. It is this that will cause the opposition to react to your advantage.”

Rule 9: The threat is more terrifying than the thing itself. Imagination and ego can dream up many more consequences than any activist. (For example, when Alinsky leaked word that large numbers of poor people were going to tie up the washrooms of O’Hare Airport, Chicago city authorities quickly agreed to act on a longstanding commitment to a ghetto organization. They imagined the mayhem as thousands of passengers poured off airplanes to discover every washroom occupied. Then they imagined the international embarrassment and the damage to the city’s reputation.)

Rule 10: “The major premise for tactics is the development of operations that will maintain a constant pressure upon the opposition.” It is this unceasing pressure that results in the reactions from the opposition that are essential for the success of the campaign. Additionally, the main job of the organizer is to bait an opponent into reacting. “The enemy properly goaded and guided in his reaction will be your major strength.”

Rule 11: “If you push a negative hard enough, it will push through and become a positive.” Violence from the other side can win the public to your side because the public sympathizes with the underdog.

Rule 12: “The price of a successful attack is a constructive alternative.” Never let the enemy score points because you’re caught without a solution to the problem. Avoid being trapped by an opponent or an interviewer who says, “Okay, what would you do?”

Rule 13: “Pick the target, freeze it, personalize it, and polarize it.” Cut off the support network and isolate the target from sympathy. Don’t try to attack abstract corporations or bureaucracies. Identify a responsible individual. Ignore attempts to shift or spread the blame.


CANADIAN, eh! So, What Do Canadians Have To Be Proud Of ?

What Do Canadians Have To Be Proud Of ?

Well, look at this list to start…

Crispy Crunch, Coffee Crisp, Mars Bars
The size of our football fields, and a game played with one less down and bigger balls
Baseball is Canadian – First game June 4, 1838 – Ingersoll , ON
Lacrosse is Canadian
Hockey is Canadian
Basketball is Canadian
Apple pie is Canadian
Mr. Dress-up beats Mr. Rogers (and Rusty beats Casey anyday)
Tim Hortons beats Dunkin’ Donuts
In the war of 1812, started by Americans, Canadians pushed the Americans back, past their ‘White House’. Then we burned it and most of Washington.
Canada has the largest French population that never surrendered to Germany.
We have the largest English population that never ever surrendered or withdrew during any war to anyone, anywhere. EVER.
Our civil war was fought in a bar and it lasted a little over an hour.
The only person who was arrested in our civil war was an American mercenary, who slept in and missed the whole thing…but showed up just in time to get caught.
A Canadian invented Standard Time.
The Hudson Bay Company once owned over 10% of the earth’s surface and is still around as the world’s oldest company.
The average dog sled team can kill and devour a full grown human in under 3 minutes.
We still know what to do with all the parts of a buffalo.
We don’t marry our kin-folk.
We invented ski-doos, jet-skis, Velcro, zippers, insulin, penicillin, zambonis, and telephones. And, short wave radios that save countless lives each year.
We ALL have frozen our tongues to something metal and lived to tell about it.
A Canadian invented Superman.
We have coloured money.
The handles on our beer cases are big enough to fit your hands with mitts on.

Our FAV Summertime Music Play List


Here is a play list of special songs that make the most of this season’s heat and sweat – and, if you’ve managed to book off, of its water fun.  By George presents our dozen favourites to kick-back and enjoy the summer:


#1 – We have to start it off with a classic Beach Boys mix:

Surfin’ USA  /  Barbara Ann  /  Good Vibrations

#2 – The all-time favourite anthem of lazy, beachside fun: Margaritaville – Jimmy Buffet (and raise a glass to It’s Five O’Clock Somewhere)

#3 – The Dock of the Bay – Otis Redding

#4 – California Girls – David Lee Roth

#5 – Everybody’s favourite fun tune, In the Summertime – Mungo Jerry

#6 – Country crooner Alan Jackson’s take on summertime fun: Chattahoochee

#7 – The timeless Pretty Woman – Roy Orbison

#8 – Get up and moving with Born to be Wild – Steppenwolf

#9 – Here’s a more recent bolt of energy courtesy of Katrina and the Waves – Walking on Sunshine

#10 – A modern day classic of Sheryl Crow’s – All I Wanna Do

#11 – Every play list needs a few solid, Canadian rock tunes like Tom Cochrane’s No Regrets and Life is a Highway

#12 – Every list also needs a generous dose of Bruce. Here’s only a “Springsteen teaser”: Jersey Girl  / Glory Days  / Better Days  – and the #1 All-time Rock Anthem – Born to Run 

A Goodbye to the Irreplaceable David Letterman


Last night was, well, the last night… After a total of 6,028 The Late Show broadcasts, David Letterman signed off with class: “The only thing I have left to do for the last time on a television program is say thank you and good night.”

And here’s the final tweet from The Late Show – Thank you and goodnight -David Letterman #ThanksDave

In tribute to David’s remarkable career, the By George Journal provides the following links for you to enjoy…

David Letterman’s Monologue – 5/20/15

David Letterman’s Final Thank You and Good Night

‘Our long national nightmare is over’: Letterman signs off after 33-year run

David Letterman’s departure marks end of an era

Top 10 questions about Letterman’s beloved Top Ten

By George Journal post: David Letterman and Top 10 Lists

David Letterman’s final Top 10 list before retirement

For the record, here is the very last of the Letterman’s Top Ten lists…

The category was “Things I’ve Always Wanted to Say to Dave.”

10. Alec Baldwin: “Of all the talk shows, yours was the most geographically convenient to my home.”

9. Barbara Walters: “Did you know you wear the same cologne as Moammar Gadhafi?”

8. Steve Martin: “Your extensive plastic surgery was a necessity and a mistake.”

7. Jerry Seinfeld: “I have no idea what I’ll do when you go off the air. You know, I just thought of something. I’ll be fine.”

6. Jim Carrey: “Honestly, Dave, I’ve always found you to be a bit of an over-actor.”

5. Chris Rock: “I’m just glad your show is being given to a white guy.”

4. Julia Louis-Dreyfus: “Thanks for letting me take part in another hugely disappointing series finale.”

3. Peyton Manning: “You are to comedy what I am to … comedy.”

2. Tina Fey: “Thanks for finally proving men can be funny.”

1. Bill Murray: “Dave, I’ll never have the money I owe you.”

For more highlights and unforgettable clips from the show, visit the official The Late Show YouTube channel:
Late Show with David Letterman

Thank you David Letterman for all the laughs and all the memories!


The World’s Thinnest Books

Here is a fun list of what can be best described as “The World’s Thinnest Books”


The Amish Phone Directory

Royal Family’s Guide to Good Marriages

Safe Places to Travel in the USA

Cooking Gourmet Dishes With Tofu

The Complete Guide to Catholic Sex

The Code of Ethics for Lawyers

The Book of Motivated Postal Workers

The Politician’s Book of Ethics

Americans’ Guide to Etiquette

The World Guide to Good American Beer

Career Opportunities for History Majors

Dr. Kevorkian’s Collection of Motivational Speeches


Everything Men Know about Women

Bill Clinton: A Portrait of Integrity

Things I Love About Bill by Hillary Clinton

George Foreman’s Big Book of Baby Names

How To Get To The Super Bowl by Dan Marino

Things I Can’t Afford by Bill Gates

How I Served My Country by Jane Fonda

All The Men I’ve Loved Before by Ellen DeGeneres

Spotted Owl Recipes by the Sierra Club

French War Heroes by Jacques Chirac

My Book of Morals by Bill Clinton (with introduction by The Rev. Jessie Jackson)


(ed. – If you have any titles to add, we’d be glad to hear from you.)


Suggestions for a successful life

  • Marry the right person. This one decision will determine 90% of your happiness or misery.
  • Work at something you enjoy and that’s worthy of your time and talent.
  • Give people more than they expect and do it cheerfully.
  • Become the most positive and enthusiastic person you know.
  • Be forgiving of yourself and others.
  • Be generous.
  • Have grateful heart.
  • Persistence, persistence, persistence.
  • Discipline yourself to save money on even the most modest salary.
  • Treat everyone you meet like you want to be treated.
  • Commit yourself to constant improvement and to quality.
  • Understand that happiness is not based on possessions, power or prestige, but on relationships with people you love and respect.
  • Be loyal.
  • Be honest.
  • Be a self-starter.
  • Be decisive even if it means you’ll sometimes be wrong.
  • Stop blaming others. Take responsibility for every area of your life.
  • Be bold and courageous. When you look back on your life, you’ll regret the things you didn’t do more than the ones you did.
  • Take good care of those you love.
  • Don’t do anything that wouldn’t make your Mom proud.


(ed. – This is a list taken from a poster that was forever hanging in our family rec room. Though it is no longer on the wall, today, most all points are committed to memory.)

Escaping Facebook’s Blackhole

Facebook is a tremendous social media tool – perhaps the best tool to be ever developed. People can spend hours on their Facebook each day – socializing. However, this on-line activity can also lead to an addiction, as people get lost in the FB’s black hole, clicking through both posts, sponsored pages and, ultimately, ads and commercial offerings.

Joseph Hindy recently wrote about this destructive FB obsession in a great article posted on @LifeHack. He listed 10 things that will happen once you stop checking Facebook all the time. Here is Hindy’s insightful list.

1. You’ll Become less Braindead.
The term “Braindead” is used in this context when you are staring at a screen ignoring everything and everyone around you. If you get off of Facebook, many new opportunities could arise when you are not catching up with all your “friends”.

2. You’ll Get more Work Done.
“Checking Facebook” really means you are going to scroll through posts for potentially a half an hour. If people could get as much time in working and learning as checking social-media websites, the entire human race would be geniuses!

3. You Can Focus on Other Things.
Being on Facebook takes a lot of time. If you start being more productive with your time… you could spend more time with real friends, walk, bike, or run. Without the addiction of updates, you could put your mind to better things.

4. You Can Find Out Who Your Real Friends Are.
Someone who spends a minute liking all your posts and commenting on all your updates looks as if they really care about you, which of course in most cases is wrong. Hanging out as well as doing physical activities with a legitimate friend is a lot better according to the true meaning of friend.

5. You Will Learn the Word “Like” Has No Meaning.
Liking things on Facebook is no longer a matter of actually liking the post. It’s an obligatory action to show that you have seen the post and acknowledge its existence. The “like” button basically states you have seen the post, therefore, making the button useless in real life.

6. You Will Feel More Accomplished.
Constantly dealing with the never ending posts can be somewhat emotionally draining. Doing things like gardening, running, or putting in a load of laundry can make you feel like you have actually accomplished something.

7. You’ll Get Rid of the Stalkers.
Practically everyone who uses Facebook has a stalker… It is all there to see, your home life as well as your social life. If you leave Facebook, you’ll be totally immune to those kind of creepy people.

8. You Will Actually Feel Better About Yourself.
Studies have shown that Facebook makes you feel bad about yourself. When you post a status nobody likes or you find rude comments on something you posted, it can be quite depressing. Getting off Facebook will release the weight of depression from a couple of pointless posts.

9. You Will Feel Better About the Things You Own.
Studies have shown that people are jealous about how popular their friend is in social media. There jealous about comments, posts, etc. Facebook is an excellent place to brag about what you have or what you have done, so getting off of it can release the pressure of “keeping up with the Jones’s”.

10. You Will Realize That All You Ever Were To Facebook Was a Piece of Data That Viewed Advertisements.
We have no doubt that there are people on Facebook who legitimately care about you. However, we also have no doubt that Facebook itself couldn’t care less about you. Your job on Facebook is to buy games, view advertisements, and make new friends so they can get caught up in Facebook too. All you are is a piece of data that is earning Facebook money.

To read the full article by Joseph Hindy, click here.

 (ed. – This article was first published in By George Journal in November 2014. After spending a weekend watching my older son lost in his FB stream, I was prompted to bring this excellent advice forward.)

Good advice on success

I re-discovered this gem from back issues of the By George Journal.

In building a firm foundation for success, here are a few stones to remember:

1. The wisdom of preparation.
2. The value of confidence.
3. The worth of honesty.
4. The privilege of working.
5. The discipline of struggle.
6. The magnetism of character.
7. The radiance of health.
8. The forcefulness of simplicity.
9. The winsomeness of courtesy.
10. The attractiveness of modesty.
11. The inspiration of cleanliness.
12. The satisfaction of serving.
13. The power of suggestion.
14. The buoyancy of enthusiasm.
15. The advantage of initiative.
16. The virtue of patience.
17. The rewards of cooperation.
18. The fruitfulness of perseverance.
19. The sportsmanship of losing.
20. The joy of winning.


(ed. – This list was compiled by Rollo C. Hester.)


Questions to divert your attention

We have all seen these types of lists of questions. Rhetorical. Silly. Puzzling. All designed to simply divert your attention (or that person you have chosen to bug) from the task at hand.

So, here’s a list. You can put your pen down or turn your device on mute. Take the time to enjoy these diversions. Consider the following questions:

  • How important does a person have to be before they are considered assassinated instead of just murdered?
  • Once you’re in heaven, do you get stuck wearing the clothes you were buried in for eternity?
  • Why does a round pizza come in a square box?
  • What disease did cured ham actually have?
  • How is it that we put man on the moon before we figured out it would be a good idea to put wheels on luggage?
  • Why is it that people say they ‘slept like a baby’ when babies wake up like every two hours?
  • Why are you “in” a movie, but you’re “on” TV?
  • Why do people pay to go up tall buildings and then put money in binoculars to look at things on the ground?
  • Why do doctors leave the room while you change? They’re going to see you naked anyway…
  • Why do toasters always have a setting that burns the toast to a horrible crisp, which no decent human being would eat?
  • Why does Goofy stand erect while Pluto remains on all fours? They’re both dogs!
  • If corn oil is made from corn, and vegetable oil is made from vegetables, what is baby oil made from?
  • Do the Alphabet song and Twinkle, Twinkle Little Star have the same tune? Why did you just try singing the two songs – you knew the answer, didn’t you?
  • Did you ever notice that when you blow in a dog’s face, he gets mad at you, but when you take him for a car ride, he sticks his head out the window?
  • Why, Why, Why do we press harder on a remote control when we know the batteries are getting dead? Or the elevator button thinking it will reach your floor faster?
  • Why do banks charge a fee on ‘insufficient funds’ when they know there is not enough money?
  • Why does someone believe you when you say there are four billion stars, but check when you say the paint is wet?
  • Why do they use sterilized needles for death by lethal injection?
  • Why does Superman stop bullets with his chest, but ducks when you throw a revolver at him?
  • Why do Kamikaze pilots wear helmets?
  • Why doesn’t Tarzan have a beard?
  • If people evolved from apes, why are there still apes?
  • Why is it that no matter what color bubble bath you use the bubbles are always white?
  • Is there ever a day that mattresses are not on sale?
  • Why do people constantly return to the refrigerator with hopes that something new to eat will have materialized?
  • Why do people keep running over a thread a dozen times with their vacuum cleaner, then reach down, pick it up, examine it, then put it down to give the vacuum one more chance?
  • Why is it that no plastic bag will open from the end on your first try?
  • How do those dead bugs get into those enclosed light fixtures?
  • Why is it that whenever you attempt to catch something that’s falling off the table you always manage to knock something else over?
  • In winter why do we try to keep the house as warm as it was in summer when we complained about the heat?
  • How come you never hear father-in-law jokes?
  • The statistics on sanity is that one out of every four persons is suffering from some sort of mental illness. Think of your three best friends — if they’re okay, then what does that say about you?


(ed. – Thank you to our friend Dick Inwood, who succeeds in keeping us amused each and every day.)

David Letterman and Top 10 Lists

From our recent post about pop culture happenings of 30 years ago, we see that David Letterman started his famous “Top-10 Lists” in 1985.

This year, sadly, the popular late-night talk-show host will be airing his last show in May. And we will regrettably lose our nightly source of off-the-wall lists.

In advance of this final countdown towards that last Late Night with David Letterman show, here are some Top 10 lists about the man, his show and the lists themselves.



10. He made list-making seem effortless. It is not.
9. Someone has to take care of Paul Shaffer, and it will not be us
8. He is not above taking a selfie with his successor
7. Alan Kalter
6. We got all our news from “Know Your Current Events”
5. That insane extortion scandal that no one seems to remember
4. CBS Mailbag
3. Stupid Pet Tricks
2. Stupid Human Tricks
1. The best grin in late-night

Slate.com has recently compiled its own list of why we will miss Letterman’s zany ability to produce Top 10 lists:


10. Their topicality
9. Their absurdity
8. Their longevity
7. Their irreverence
6. Their silliness
5. Their brevity
4. Their self-deprecation
3. Their surprise
2. Their reliability
1. Regis.

Slate also compiled statistical information about Letterman’s work. Here is what they found of the statistical analysis of every Top Ten List ever read – more than 4,100 lists from September 1985 to September 2014.

Here are the top 10 celebrities mentioned in Letterman’s Top Ten Lists.

10. Kathie Lee Gifford
9. Martha Stewart
8. Richard Simmons
7. Larry King
6. Michael Jackson
5. Madonna
4. Donald Trump
3. O.J. Simpson
2. Oprah Winfrey
1. Regis Philbin

Here are the Top 10 politicians mentioned the most in Letterman’s Top Ten Lists.

10. Newt Gingrich
9. George H.W. Bush
8. Barack Obama
7. Dan Quayle
6. Saddam Hussein
5. Dick Cheney
4. Al Gore
3. Hillary Clinton
2. George W. Bush
1. Bill Clinton

Finally, if you are a fan of the man, you will love this collection of photos compiled by CBS: Letterman through the Years.

(ed. – Here are the sources for the above lists: National Post and Slate. The photo is from Wikipedia via the Creative Commons, with photo credit attribution: By Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff from Washington D.C, United States (110613-N-TT977-230))


30 years ago, in 1985…


By George came across a terrific list of pop culture events that were headline in the year 1985 – 30 years ago this year! Here is a list of 30 things turning 30 in 2015.

1. Back to the Future
2. New Coke
3. “We are the World”
4. WrestleMania I
5. Pictionary
6. Discovery of the RMS Titanic wreck
7. “We Built This City,” voted the “Worst Song of All Time”
8. Bands: Guns N’ Roses, DJ Jazzy Jeff & The Fresh Prince, Indigo Girls, Jane’s Addiction, Crowded House
9. The Nintendo Entertainment System (in the U.S.) released Super Mario Bros., and Duck Hunt
10. Mask (the Movie) and M.A.S.K. (the TV Show)
11. Discovery of the Hole in the Ozone Layer
12. Where in the World is Carmen Sandiego?
13. Madonna’s Big Year
14. Blockbuster Video
15. The first smoking ban in U.S. restaurants
16. Calvin and Hobbes
17. Microsoft Windows 1.0
18. The first Dot Com
19. Books: Contact, The Handmaid’s Tale, White Noise…
20. The Brat Pack (first seen in The Breakfast Club)
21. PeaklLevels of David Lee Roth in the Rockosphere
22. The first commercial AIDS Blood Test
23. Anna Kendrick, Michael Phelps, Raven-Symoné… born in 1985
24. Thundercats! Jem! The Golden Girls! debuted
25. VH1, Nick at Nite, Elmo, and the First Letterman “Top 10 List”
26. Portlandia (Statue)
27. The WELL
28. Phil Collins, No Jacket Required
29. The First Million-Selling CD: Dire Straights’ Brothers in Arm
30. Studio Ghibli

SOURCE:  To read about each of these events and enjoy video clips and links to further information, click to the full article, found in Mental Floss: 30 Things Turning 30 in 2015


10 Exquisite Sentences

Jennifer Schaffer of BuzzFeed compiled wonderful sentences from throughout the arts and published her list – 51 Of The Most Beautiful Sentences In Literature. Here are the top-10 of those 51, as picked by By George. To read and enjoy the full list, go here.

  • “There is a sense in which we are all each other’s consequences.” – Wallace Stegner, All the Little Live Things
  • “I took a deep breath and listened to the old brag of my heart; I am, I am, I am.” —Sylvia Plath, The Bell Jar
  • “‘Dear God,’ she prayed, ‘let me be something every minute of every hour of my life.’” —Betty Smith, A Tree Grows in Brooklyn
  • “Sometimes I can feel my bones straining under the weight of all the lives I’m not living.” —Jonathan Saran Foer, Extremely Loud and Incredibly Close
  • “We cross our bridges as we come to them and burn them behind us, with nothing to show for our progress except a memory of the smell of smoke, and the presumption that once our eyes watered.” —Tom Stoppard, Rosencratz and Guildenstern Are Dead
  • “In spite of everything, I still believe people are really good at heart.” —Anne Frank, The Diary of Anne Frank
  • “She was lost in her longing to understand.” —Gabriel Garcia Marquez, Love in the Time of Cholera
  • “The curves of your lips rewrite history.” —Oscar Wilde, The Picture of Dorian Gray
  • “It frightened him to think what must have gone to the making of her eyes.” —Edith Wharton, The Age of Innocence
  • “Beauty is an enormous, unmerited gift given randomly, stupidly.” —Khaled Hosseini, And the Mountains Echoed

(ed. – Many thanks to our friend Susan Wright who found this and posted it on her FB page.)

QUIZ re Maclean’s Most Influential Canadians

Maclean’s produced their annual list of the top 50 most influential Canadians. By George Journal has reproduced the list of the top 10 below.

THE QUIZ: We challenge you to name the occupation of the following 10 Canucks (1 point) and relate why there are so important to our country (1 point).

In the comments section below, you can find the answers to our questions.

How informed are you?

  1. Stephen Harper
  2. Joanne Liu
  3. Mark Wiseman
  4. Beverley McLachlin
  5. Janice Charette
  6. Guy A. Lepage
  7. Bharat Masrani
  8. Bob Paulson
  9. Jenni Byrne
  10. Philippe Couillard

How many points out of the 20 can you get?

To see the full list of the 50 most influential Canadians, go to the Maclean’s article here.


Lessons of Life and Success

To follow up on yesterday’s post of Colin’s Powell: 13 Rules, By George reaches back into our archives to produce a short-list of “life lessons” posts that have been published in these pages. Each list of rules or lessons provides a slightly different perspective on the age old pursuit of happiness and/or success. Enjoy (and take notes).

Tolstoy’s “10 Rules of Life”

8 Lessons of Life – from 108 years old Alice Herz-Sommer, the world’s oldest Holocaust survivor

10 life lessons you should unlearn – from Martha Beck, concerned over one’s “satisfaction in life”

Carnegie’s 10 Rules of Success

Successful? Here are two lists to commit to memory – Habits and ways of rich, successful people and 9 ways highly successful people think differently

50 Most-Canadian Foods

On this our Canadian Thanksgiving weekend, By George presents the 50 most-Canadian foods. In no particular order (but certainly with poutine at the top of the list), here are 50 Canuck delicacies.

  1. Poutine
  2. Ketchup Chips
  3. Maple Syrup
  4. Bacon (ever popular strip bacon and “Canadian” peameal bacon)
  5. Butter Tarts
  6. BeaverTails
  7. Nanaimo Bars
  8. Game Meat ( ike boar, bison, venison, caribou and rabbit)
  9. B.C. Salmon
  10. Wild Blueberries
  11. Blueberry Blossom Honey
  12. East Coast Oysters (and scallops and mussels)
  13. Canadian Apples
  14. P.E.I. Potatoes
  15. Nova Scotia Lobster
  16. Alberta Beef
  17. Montreal Bagels
  18. Arctic Char
  19. Bannock
  20. Kraft Dinner
  21. Newfoundland Screech
  22. Tourtière
  23. Saskatoon Berries
  24. Tim Hortons “Double-Double” (and, now, “the 4×4”)
  25. Fiddleheads
  26. Swiss Chalet Sauce
  27. Montreal Smoked Meat
  28. Halifax Donairs
  29. Cod Tongue
  30. Pemmican (with bison or moose)
  31. Red Rose Tea
  32. Foie Gras
  33. Oka Cheese
  34. Quebecois Sugar Pie
  35. B.C. Spot Prawns
  36. Coffee Crisp chocolate bar
  37. Caesar (think Clamato)
  38. Sushi Pizza
  39. Nova Scotia Blueberry Grunt
  40. Kinder Eggs
  41. Girl Guide Mint Cookies
  42. Acadian Rappie Pie
  43. Chokecherries
  44. Saskatchewan Lentils
  45. Sourdough Bread (in The Yukon)
  46. Purple Garlic
  47. P.E.I. Mussels
  48. President’s Choice Products
  49. Mustard
  50. Canadian Milk

Read descriptions of these foods in this Huffington Post article.