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Ringgold County's Oral Legend & Memories Project

Mount Ayr Record-News
Mount Ayr, Ringgold County, Iowa
Thursday, February 10, 2005

Ore from mining my column idea file

It's about time for one of my begged, borrowed or stolen columns where I mine the drawer of column material I save when I come across something particulary interesting that someone else has used.

After all, the material I am mining has usually been mined by the weekly column writer I am quoting too.

Take the "Levin's Literary Language Lessons" which are credited to Gary Alban's Ogden Reporter and Frank Morlan's Osceola Tribune. And neither one of them is Levin, whoever he is.

The lessons are worth repeating, however many times they have been repeated before. They take a sometimes cynical view of column advice.

1. Do not walk behind me, for I may not lead. Do not walk ahead of me, for I may not follow. Do not walk beside me either. Just leave me alone.

2. It's always darkest before the dawn. So if you're going to take your neighbor's newspaper, that's the time to do it.

3. Always remember you're unique. Just like everyone else.

4. Never test the depth of water with both feet.

5. It may be that your sole purpose in life is simply to serve as a warning to others.

6. If you think that nobody cares if you're alive, try missing a couple of car payments.

7. Before you criticize someone else, you should walk a mile in their shoes. That way, when you criticize them, you're a mile away and you have their shoes.

8. If at first you don't succeed, skydiving is not for you.

9. If you lend someone $20 and never see that person again, it was probably worth it.

10. If you tell the truth, you don't have to remember anything.

11. Some days you are the bug, some days you are the windshield.

12. Good judgement comes from bad experience, and a lot of that comes from bad judgement.

13. The quickest way to double your money is to fold it in half and put it back in your pocket.

14. Duct tape is like the Force. It has a light side and a dark side, and it holds the universe together.

15. Experience is something you don't get until just after you need it.

16. We were born naked, wet and hungry. Then things get worse.

* * * *

I was reminded again the other day that those of us in the 50 and older crowd have a wealth of knowledge that younger whipper snappers don't have.

(How long has it been since you heard someone called a whipper snapper?)

Take this quiz that is making the rounds on the Internet. Younger folk won't get 100 percent like those of us who have been around a while.

Here's the quiz:

1. After the Lone Ranger saved the day and rode off into the sunset, the grateful citizens would ask, "Who was that masked man?" Invariably, someone would answer, "I don't know, but he left this behind." What did he leave behind?

2. When the Beatles first came to the United States in early 1964, what television show were they watched on?

3. Get your kicks on ______________.

4. The story you are about to see it true. The names have been changed _______________.

5. In the jungle, the mighty jungle, ___________________.

6. After the twist, the mashed potato and the watusi, dancing was done under a stick that was lowered as low as we could go in a dance called the ____________________.

7. N E S T L E S. Nestle's makes the very best _______________.

8. What takes a licking and keeps on ticking?

9. Red Skelton always ended his television show by saying, "Good night and _____________."

10. The cute little car with the engine in the back and the trunk in the front was called the VW. What are two other names it went by?

11. In 1971, singer Don MacLean sang a song about "the day the music died." This was a tribute to who?

12. The Russians placed the first satellite in orbit. What was it called?

13. One of the big fads of the late 1950s and early 1960s was a large plastic ring that was twirled around the waist. What was it called?

Here are the answers in case you're not a baby boomer.

1. A silver bullet. 2. The Ed Sullivan Show. 3. Route 66. 4. To protect the innocent. 5. The lion sleeps tonight. 6. The limbo. 7. Chocolate. 8. The Timex watch. 9. "And May God Bless." 10. Beetle or Bug. 11. Buddy Holly. 12. Sputnik. 13. Hoola-hoop.

Hope you've had some fun with my mining finds.

To contribute to "Tales from the Front Porch: Ringgold County's Oral Legend & Memories Project"
contact Sharon R. Becker at
Please include the word "Ringgold - Front Porch" in the subject line. Thank you.

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