Sunday, August 03, 2014

Walking For the American Diabetes Association to Defeat Diabetes

For the past more than 3 months, I have been getting out and walking first thing every morning, primarily for my own benefit. And the benefits have been great, as I have had medications cut, I'm wearing smaller clothes, and my weight has gone down. My main push is to #DefeatDiabetes. On October 5, I WILL be participating in the Walk to stop Diabetes in Akron, Ohio. This is a benefit walk for the American Diabetes Association

Diabetes runs in my family. I was first  made aware of this when I was 10 years old, as we went to the hospital to visit my grandmother. She was almost in a diabetic coma. Later in life, I became aware of diabetes as both my parents were diagnosed as being diabetic.
As I approached my 50th birthday, I too, was diagnosed as being diabetic. I first became gung ho about it, but t things did not appear to me as serious as it should have. Increases in oral medication and needing several insulin shots before emergency surgery got me concerned, but this was just momentary.
This year, around Easter Sunday, my vision was becoming blurry. I was also having problems controlling my emotions. Two days after Easter, I finally called my doctor as my blood glucose reading was 230. My weight was approaching 300 pounds. At this point, after my doctor once again adjusted my meds, I decided that I need to become proactive. As I made adjustments to my diet and started walking a minimum of 1.8 miles first thing every morning, my weight and my glucose levels started dropping. My doctor also starting readjusting my prescriptions downward. As all my Facebook friends are aware, one of my goals is to defeat diabetes in my life. I also aim to make my children and grand children aware that they need to be and stay proactove in order to not worry about diabetes affecting their lives. I have been told by  several of my friends that they're following my example and have become proactive.
Please visit my page and show your support by making a generous donation. Together, we can all help to Defeat Diabetes. Click on this link and become proactive.

Sunday, July 20, 2014

Last Generation to Enjoy Newspapers?

The photo at the top of this post is my granddaughter, Makenna. She is 9 years old, and she is doing something that many of us, our parents, grandparents, and possibly great grandparents enjoyed doing. That is reading the comics from our daily newspapers. That trend could come to an abrupt halt during this generation.

The newspaper's funnies that are being read in this photo is from the Cleveland Plain Dealer. That paper is only home delivered four days a week nowadays. This was done as a cost cutting measure. The internet has cut deeply into readership of the daily paper worldwide. Why pay for day old news when you can get it fresh for free?

It's very sad when I remember being able to read the comics every day. I enjoyed reading Peanuts, Beetle Bailey, Dennis the Menace, B.C., among others. And the Sunday paper had 2 full color comics sections. I think that this is a privilege every child should have. It would enhance their quiet time, something kids need way more of.

Our oldest grandson, Ben, who is 11, tells me that he likes to read the paper through. Maybe the news is old by the time you get it, but it is there. If your internet goes out, you can still read the paper. You can take it with you anywhere and not have to worry about not having a wifi connection.

Getting back to Makenna, there is another reason for her to enjoy the paper. She is deaf, not totally, but enough to not be able to enjoy other forms of media that most other take advantage of. When the paper finally becomes a thing of the past, many will lose from their demise.

I have adapted well to the cyber age. I read 2 comic strips everyday, Funky Winkerbean and Dick Tracy. I know where to find each on the web. I know where to get the news and local ads. But I think I will suffer when the day comes when the daily paper is no longer available.

Wednesday, July 09, 2014

Working to Defeat Diabetes

It came to a head on April 22nd. This was the Tuesday after Easter Sunday, and we were very busy the day before at work. I work the customer service line for a toy company and the day after Easter, understandably, would be a very brisk day. I had been having problems with my eyesight for the past several days, and working a job where you are staring at 2 computer screens for several hours is not good when you have blurred vision.

When I woke up on the 22nd, I was also experiencing headaches. At this point, I decided to check my blood glucose. I hadn't done that in many months, I wasn't even sure that my monitor was even working. The monitor read 230, more than 100 points higher than the top level should be. After thinking about it for over an hour, I had even packed my lunch for work, I decided to call the doctor's office and leave a message for the medical receptionist to call back. After that, I called off work.

My call to the doctor was returned by his receptionist. She said that he should see me, so I made an appointment for later that morning. While I was waiting to be seen, I posted this update on Facebook: "Waiting to see doctor. Blurred vision, headache, and elevated blood glucose. Figure it's time to see him."
Many thoughts went through my mind at this point. I was worried that I was going blind. Kathy was worried that I was going to be sent to the emergency room. I also was kicking my self due to my stupidity. Being diabetic, I was well aware of things that can happen if you don't stay on top of your condition. Things like blindness, kidney failure, heart failure, and having body parts amputated. I was then called in. Here is the next Facebook update: "Update on my medical condition: I wish to thank everybody for all your well wishes and prayers. When I got in to the doctor's office, the nurse took my blood pressure. It was 126/64. I knew at this point that I was going to be fine. When the doctor had come into the examination room, I let him know about recent happenings. He checked vitals and adjusted my diabetic medications. He gave me a new one to try and cut down on one of the others. I then went on to work. I was 5-1/2 hours late, but welcome nonetheless. My blood glucose later registered at 103. Vision is getting better and headaches are gone. Time to get my fat @$$ moving once again and try to knock some of the excess poundage off."

Ring ring, Cliff Feightner, here is your reality call. Next day was my day off. We were sitting at my in laws' house the next day, discussing my latest condition. I knew one thing that would help, along with adjustment of my diet, would be a good exercise program. Problem was, in my mind, my man made left knee. I had been putting off having surgery on it for at least the past 3 years. I decided there that if I had to wrap the knee every day, I would try to walk some pounds off.

The next day, the walking started to come together. the knee wasn't wrapped up. The following was my update , along with what has become my personal hashtag: Took a walk of a little over a mile. Worked up a sweat. Feel good!#DefeatDiabetes

And yes, I use #DefeatDiabetes with at least one FB post a day. And since these were becoming the most commented on posts, I wanted to send out other messages too: "And please, if you have a family history of diabetes, or are diagnosed with it, don't let your emotions start to go out of control over things you have no control over, or start to have vision problems before you start to take action.#DefeatDiabetes"
Cliff Note: Even if you don't have a Facebook account, you can read my posts by clicking on the hashtag, .#DefeatDiabetes

Diabetes is in  epidemic proportions in this country due to some of the lazy habits we have cultivated. I first learned 9 years ago that I was diabetic. I thought at that time that I could beat it by diet and exercise. I became gung ho about it, but that went by the wayside.

October 22, 2011, I was in my inlaws' backyard when I slipped in the mud and broke 2 bones in my ankle. I was transported, by ambulance, to Medina Hospital, where I had surgery to put a plate and 9 screws in my leg. As I was going in for surgery, I had to have 3 insulin shots. This is because I hadn't taken my diabetic meds in quite a while. As I was in surgery, Kathy was afraid that I was going to stroke out on the table.

The reason I hadn't been taking my diabetic meds was financial. Believe me, that's a very dumb reason. Let your doctor know if there are medications that you can't afford. There are programs that will help.

Everything turned out fine and the following spring, I started an exercise program that ended before summer.

In the meantime, I became the good guy that would bring treats in to work on Saturday. This included doughnuts. And of course, I would indulge. After the doctor's appointment of April 22. this would change. Here is my update for April 26: "First doughnut free Saturday for me. I would bring in doughnuts for my coworkers to snack on as we work a 5 hour day on Saturday with no lunch break. No can do now. I have cut up some celery and am taking that along with some baby carrots. Not exciting in itself, but the end result will be.#DefeatDiabetes"

And my coworkers have been very supportive. The support comes from other avenues. When I call WONE-FM with my poems, one of the first questions that either Jeff Kinzbach or Ed Esposito will ask me pertains to my health. They both let me know that they are reading my posts and give me encouragement.

And there are what I call small victories. I have using my Facebook account as an accountability group. I love being able to tell of minor accomplishments.  Here is one of the first of this journey. The post was written on May 3.
"Small Victories: First this morning, after my walk and shower, my blood glucose was 131. Now the small victory involves snacking at work. As most know, I am employed at a call center. I sit at a desk wearing a headset for several hours a day. My work week starts out working from 8am to 8pm Monday and Tuesday. I get 2 half hour breaks during the course of the day. I also keep something in my desk to give me a quick boost in case my blood glucose gets too low. That is a common problem of diabetics. In my desk, I have a pack of Lance cheese crackers and a granola bar. I also have a tin of Altoids. On Tuesday, we were all given Baby Ruth Bars. I placed it in my desk, where it still sets. When I have felt the need for a boost this week, I have gone into my tin of Altoids and put 2 in my mouth. According to the nutritional label, that's 2/3 of a serving. 1 serving has 10 calories. Now I have to work on my grazing when I get home at night. That is doable.#DefeatDiabetes

BTW, the candy bar is still in my desk. Other small victories have included going down 3 pants sizes, and the ability to turn down desserts. I have discovered that I now have to start my morning with at least a 1.8 mile walk or a half hour on the treadmill.

My blood pressure and glucose have gone down significantly. My latest problem was that my glucose was getting too low, necessitating another visit to my doctor. This occurred yesterday morning. Since April 22, I have lost 23 pounds. My doctor was really excited with the fact that he could cut both my diabetic and blood pressure medications.

One of the thoughts that runs through my mind as I go get up at 4am on Monday and Tuesday to take my walk is one of motivation. I think about the old Zig Ziglar qoute. "Do I want to look like me? Or the guy in the Jockey shorts?" Realisitically, I know that I will not be looking like the guy inb the Jockey shorts, but I do have a weight goal. That is 60 by 60. I want to be 60 pounds less than I was on April 22 by my 60th birthday, October 30, 2015. It's doable. My main push is to help myself and others to #DefeatDiabetes"

Sunday, December 29, 2013

Ricky and the Cleveland Browns

During the holiday season, I get to be thinking about family members who have passed on. I lost my sister, Bev, in March, 1997, my dad in September, 2000, my mom in April 2004, and my brother, Allen, in July of 2009. Most people who have read this blog, remember my writings about my brother, Ricky, who passed away in March, 2008. Ricky suffered from neurofibromtosis. He had seizures and had other developmental problems. But he always loved a good joke and had a very memorable laugh.

I was really thinking about Ricky this afternoon, as I watched the Cleveland Browns drop their final game of the season to the Pittsburgh Steelers.

Ricky was a big sports fan. He became one when I became one. As I posted before, he was my shadow. And being blessed with living in the Cleveland metropolitan area, we rooted for the Cleveland sports teams, primarily the Indians, Browns, and Cavaliers. And whatever hockey team represented the area. Ricky became a human sports encyclopedia.

Right after his 41st birthday in 1999, my parents had to make the decision to place Ricky in a nursing home. His caretakers found out he had a love of cartoons and sports. My mom would go up there to visit. The nurses noted that he really loved his cartoons. They could hear him all over the floor laughing. they also knew that they could get the latest scores by going to his room and asking.

In 2003, we transferred Ricky to a nursing home in Rittman, as Kathy and I took over his care, since my mom was in failing health. Everybody knew he had two basic interests: Spongebob Squarepants, and Cleveland sports.Which brings us to the Browns.

Sunday afternoons in the fall, the air of the nursing home would be filled with one thing: Ricky yelling at the television. the Browns had returned to the NFL, or so they say, in 1999. The new stadium was filled to capacity. The play was....crappy to say the least. Cliff Note: This is a trend that continues to this day. Anyway, Ricky bled orange and brown on game day and demanded a quality product. He was your typical Browns fan, and remember that fan is short for fanatic.

Although those around him were amused with his game day involvement, he would promise not to watch another game...until next Sunday. I sometimes think if we could get people in the Browns front office with Ricky's passion, there would have been a couple of Super bowl teams playing in Cleveland by now.

I guess the Browns being as inept as they have been has been good for bringing back some good memories of my little brother.

Wednesday, November 27, 2013

Classic Post: this is Larry Morrow, a book review.

Cliff Note: A week and a half ago, when I was in the WIXY 1260 Online studio, I was being interviewed by Lisa Jordan. We were talking about WIXY Superman, Larry Morrow. Lisa mentioned his book. Here is a repost of the review I had written about the book.

The area of the country I live in has seen many talented people come and go in television, in radio and on the athletic field. Most of these people feel the need to take their talents elsewhere. The book I'm reviewing for this post is about one of the unselfish few who stay and use their talents for the betterment of the community.

One of the media friends I have made since I started blogging is Sue Wilson, who happens to be the program director of Akron, Ohio country music station WQMX and morning show co-host. Sue had told me that Larry Morrow was one of her positive influences during her career in radio.

This is Larry Morrow...My Life on and off the Air is the autobiography of one of the classic good guys of the Cleveland airwaves. Larry tells us about his life, how he got into radio, and why he moved to, and fell in love with, Cleveland.

Larry Morrow was one of the original WIXY Supermen, the lineup of disc jockeys that helped make WIXY/1260 the legendary station it was. Larry tells quite a bit about the others, especially those behind the scenes, that helped make WIXY the success it was. At that time, he was the midday personality there and his audience was mainly housewives. In playing to that audience, there was a daily contest called what's cooking, where Larry would reveal ingredients to a recipe one by one in between playing the hits of the day.

Next stop was 3WE, where he would replace legendary announcer, Jim Runyon. It was those days I listened to him as I got ready to go to school. I used to enjoy hearing about when he got his morning coffee from David's Place, especially asking newsman Hugh Daneceau if he enjoyed his coffee. It usually was responded to by a tape of wrestler Pampero Firpo saying "ohhhh yeah."

Larry also chronicled his years behind the mike at WQAL. Wherever he stopped, he always left a positive imprint. The title that he was most proud of was "Mr. Cleveland," one he wore with pride. Larry first moved to Cleveland during the Hough riots in 1966, and he has spent the last 40 plus years working with civic leaders for the betterment of his adopted community.

This book is a very easy and enjoyable read. Even though it's about the life and career of Larry Morrow, there's ample credit to go around to everybody in his life. In the times in his career when things could have gone better, Larry spent very little time being bitter. To me that's the sign of a good pro and a great man. And you can feel safe letting anybody in your family read this book as Larry, a born again Christian, used no offensive language in the writing of the book.

If you have a love for Cleveland radio, or have a love for Cleveland period, this book is a must read. If you know anyone who has a love for the above mentioned topics, this would make a great Christmas present. Click here to order from

Cliff Note: I want to thank Jane Lassar, publicist at Gray and Company for providing me with the resources for this post.

Friday, November 22, 2013

Classic Post: WIXY 1260 Super Radio

Cliff Note: In honor of my recent visit to the WIXY 1260 online studios, I'm reposting this. I originally posted it September 17, 2007.

I know, I know. Tim Lones is the classic media expert, but I've had the 74WIXYgrad moniker long enough to be able to post about one of the all time classic top 40 radio stations.

Next, a shout out goes to Ray Glasser, webmaster of the unofficial WIXY/1260 tribute site, where I got the header for this post. Ray was kind enough to leave a message for me in my comment section last weekend.

I think all of us baby boomers had our own personal stations when we were growing up. Me, I had several. First station I can remember listening to was KYW/1100, then WKYC or KY11, Power Radio.

When I was about 12 years old, I discovered the station which would provide the soundtrack for most of my teenage years-WIXY/1260.

It was 1967, and I had gotten a transistor radio for Christmas, which was a big deal for me. that meant I could tune wherever I wanted. I would go from KY11 to the Big 8-CKLW, which was in Windsor, Ontario. Most of the time however, I would tune in to WIXY since that's what all the "groovy" people did.

I first listened to Joe Finan doing the morning show and remembered when he was walking for some charity and would walk while the pledges were coming in. I remember one time that day that the pledges momentarily stopped and the disc jockey on the air told Joe to stop walking.

I remember Larry Morrow, with his "What's Cooking" contest, where he would give ingredients then ask listeners to guess what he was making. His show was catered to young housewives and it aired from 10am to 2pm.

Other WIXY dj's I remember listening to was Chuck Dunaway, Chuck Knapp,and Dick Kemp-the wild child.

Mike Reineri soon replaced Joe Finan in the morning and was morning man for most of the 10-1/2 year history of WIXY. One of the producers, Ira Rubins, was the education director at the WIXY School of Broadcast Technique when I attended. One of his newsmen was Bill Clark, who became general manager at the WIXY School.

While I was attending classes, I was able to hear some humorous stories about the station. One of these was during the Mike Reineri show. Ira said that Reineri was taking a call from a lady who said she had a problem, but couldn't disclose it for fear of embarrassment. he than told her that she could tell her problem, but was easing away from the "dump" button. After enough convincing, she told Mike she had a bad problem with gas. At this point everybody in the studio has a world class case of the giggles. Mike Reineri then did the only thing he could do- he hit the news sounder. Bill Clark then gave the fastest news report he would ever give and taped the rest of his reports that morning.

Other stories had to do with Larry Morrow. It was said that sometimes it was a challenge to break him up while reading commercials. One time someone set fire to the copy he was reading, another time he was reading a commercial for an acne treatment product when someone had put red spots over their face in anticipation of the commercial, put something in their mouth and popped their face like a pimple.

When I went to the school, I went past the WIXY studio, which was glass encased. The mid morning jock at that time was a man named Michael Collins. I went past there one day and he was interviewing a young Michael Jackson(insert joke here). Another time he was interviewing Ron Howard and Anson Williams. They had been on the Morning Exchange earlier, being in town to promote their fairly new show "Happy Days."

I would say that one of the big thrills this wet behind the ears, 18 year old recent high school graduate had was when I was asked to give up the studio that I was practicing in for this ad agency who wanted Mike Reineri to do this commercial. It was a 10 second spot for a sale on "Bomb Pops" at Convenient Food Mart.

All I have to do is tell people my forum name, and the first reaction is "I remember WIXY." The most recent response was Tim Daugherty last weekend at the St. V-St. M band show. The WONE morning show host told me that he was one of the last listeners of WIXY, as he was listening when the station changed their call letters tio WMGC, the first "Magic Radio" in Cleveland. He listened to WIXY when others were defecting to G98.

Once again this has been some of my personal reflections. To learn more about this all time classic station, click here to go to the WIXY Tribute site, and drop Ray Glasser a note, telling him how much you appreciate his efforts.

Wednesday, November 20, 2013

I Was a Guest WIXY Super Man!

Been there, done that, and got the t-shirt. Literally. 

I achieved a goal that I thought never would happen. I was a guest on WIXY 1260!

The current incarnation of this classic radio station is available on the internet at This is a work of love by Ray Glasser and Gary Schmitz, a couple of guys who have a passion for classic radio. This station is streamed 24/7, mostly automated with a playlist of over 4,000 tunes, which is more than 13 times what any commercial station has. WIXY 1260 also has some disc jockeys who love to play the hits live. And the word is getting out about this classic! And this past Sunday, the special guest of Lisa Jordan and Majic Mike was Poetry Man himself, Cliff Feightner.

Ray Glasser, aka Ray King, one of the Bosses
Of course those who have followed this blog from the beginning know about my internet handle of 74WIXYGrad, that I took the name because I was a 1974 graduate of the WIXY School of Broadcast Technique. And one of the first links I put on this blog was the one for Ray Glasser's WIXY 1260 tribute site. And everybody should check it out. He does add new material to it constantly. It is a great place to go if you are a radio geek.

My trip to their Lakewood, Ohio studios, began with a Facebook friend request. I thought I would shoot a request to Lisa Jordan. She's one of the WIXY jocks and the thing we had in common was that we are both band announcers. I wrote a Random Act of Poetry™ on her timeline. It was well received. She also "liked" my Poetry Man Facebook page.
Majic Mike, Lisa Jordan, and Poetry Man

A short time later, I made the suggestion, tongue in cheek, that Poetry Man should be a guest on a live show on WIXY 1260. Lisa thought it would be a great idea and, very quickly, the wheels were set in motion for my appearance. I got some limericks and one liners together and took the trip north. And Ray thought it would be a great idea to make a video of my appearance. And yes, I was nervous as heck. Jeff Kinzbach messaged me and told me to relax and have fun. Everybody at the "Studio of Solitude" (Cliff Note: this is my term, but they are the WIXY Super Men, and Super Woman) told me the same thing.

Show time, I was on with Lisa and Majic Mike, who at one time hosted the Elvis Only show on WMJI. Everybody in the studio was a great encouragement to me. And during the show I got messages via text and my Facebook page, from friends and family letting me know that they were listening.

Majic Mike, Lisa Jordan and Ray King
I had some limericks about the classic WIXY Supermen and some about artists on the 4000 song play list. The 2 hour appearance went very fast, we had many listeners, and I was invited back.

I also gave a suggestion on how to get WIXY 1260 online on your smartphone. Download the TuneIn app, and there are others, to your phone, go to WIXY 1260 Online, choose it as your favorite, and pretend that you have a transistor radio.

Part one of the Video is available YouTube.

 Update 8:52pm 11/20/2013: Here is part 2.

Thursday, September 26, 2013

Poetry Man and Some In-Store Security

For the customers that come inside
They will see theft locks on the Tide
From the way that it looks
It's to thwart dirty crooks
The rest should just take it in stride

Catch Poetry Man during the Jeff Kinzbach Morning Show, weekday mornings 5:30-10 EDT on 97.5 WONE-FM, The Home of Rock N Roll or stream live at

Sunday, August 11, 2013


Been more than three months since I've posted anything here. Like many others, most of my creative efforts have been posted on Facebook page. Since, at last look, I have 439 "friends", the posts are seen by quite a few people. And even more people see them when I post on the groups I belong to.

Of late, I've also gotten the audience of a local radio veteran, whom some, including myself, consider a legend, Jeff Kinzbach. All you folks removed from Northeast Ohio remember him as the head of the Buzzard Morning Zoo for many years in the 80's and 90's on WMMS. He is now the highly rated morning show host on 97.5 WONE, Akron's Home of Rock N' Roll. I have wrote in the past how our paths crossed as high school marching band announcers. Jeff came looking for me at a band show where, the school he announces for, Medina Highland, my alma mater, and the school I announce for, Rittman, were appearing together. That evening, we became friends. Jeff also sent me a get well message five weeks later, when he learned I broke my ankle. That day, I became a fan.

In the past year and 4 months, my limericks have gotten great reviews on Facebook. For a great while, I was specializing on writing them about NASCAR. Last fall, I started using the phrase "Random Acts of Poetry." These are daily limericks consisting of whatever is on my mind. Sometimes they come quick, other times, I have to take a look at the news.I also posted on my friends' timelines, and other fan pages as well.

Back to Kinzbach. I call him a friend, but not the close personal type. He would know me to see me, and knows my voice, but would not invite me over for dessert. I'm fine with that. I was pleasantly surprised when he was named morning show host at WONE.  Because of the friendship we struck as band announcers, I started taking the liberty of posting some Random Acts on his timeline. He would always click the "like" button, showing his pleasure. Once when he read an off the wall news article, calling it "Dumbbell of the Day," I quick wrote a limerick and called it in during commercial break. Several days later, I got a message through Facebook, encouraging me to call in my poems every day. Most days, they are aired, some days not. Somedays, because of my work schedule, I have to find creative ways to call them in. One day, I wrote and called in my poem from a church parking lot, and it was aired live. News director, Ed Esposito has used one of the "Poetry Man", as they call me(also stating that the poetry line is ringing) rhymes during a newscast.

Outside of my friends and coworkers, do I have a following? I don't know. Am I having fun? You bet! With the support of Jeff Kinzbach and Ed Esposito, and the fact that program director Tim Daugherty, hasn't messaged or emailed me, telling me to knock it off, I'm enjoying bringing a smile to a few faces of folks getting ready for their work day.

Thursday, May 09, 2013

Poetry Page on Facebook

Nowadays since my poetry is becoming well known, I decided to dedicate a Facebook page to it. No need to have a Facebook account, you can just go there and check it out. If you do have an account, find it and like it. the page is called Random Acts of Poetry.

Hope you enjoy!

Friday, April 26, 2013

Goober..One special Cat

There have been blog posts, which I have written in the past, that I write to work out a bit of grief. This is one of them.

This morning, I had to make the decision to have our 12 year old cat, Goober, put down. It was not an easy decision, and I left the vet's clinic in tears. Never thought a 57 year old man would do that over a cat. But I have been told several times today that a pet is still part of the family. And in the 12 years that Goober was around, he was pretty special.

First point of I'd like to make is that Goober was not named after George Lindsay's character from the Andy Griffith Show.  I named him Goober because his mother's name is Peanut, named so by my daughter, Sylva, after she ate a peanut M&M. My reasoning was that another name for a peanut was a goober pea, hence the name.

Peanut came to us as a stray, and I was talked into keeping her because my family loves animals. Before we could get her spayed, she brought a litter into the world. We were able to find homes for all except one. goober happened to be the smallest one of the litter, but soon grew to be a good sized cat. And he had a special way of greeting you, sticking the top of his head in your face. And, like most pets, he soon got the run of the house. In the summertime, Kathy would be sitting outside reading. goober would decide when it was time for her to stop. Most of the time, he would not leave her side.

As long time readers of this blog are aware, I have sleep apnea and need to use a CPAP when I sleep. When Goober decided it was feeding time in the middle of the night, he would come in and turn of the CPAP, then nudge the mask off my face. He would get fed then allow me to go back to sleep.

For the past week, or so, Goober hadn't been feeling well. He wasn't eating, and was having problems breathing. When I got him into the vet's this morning, he was crying. The vet said that he was in bad shape and the choice was mine. Kathy and I decided that the humane thing to do was to have him euthanized. As I was leaving, I went to the desk to settle my bill. My eyes were red. I commented to the assistant at the desk that I wouldn't want her job at a time like this. she said that there are times that her job can suck.

I guess that had Goober not been as special as he was, I wouldn't feel as bad as I did. But like family members that have gone on, I can look back at the good memories we have of this special cat.

Wednesday, April 24, 2013

What's in a Name?

One of the benefits of  my award winning personality is that I have many friends who are around the same age as my kids or younger. One of my friends where I work is a young lady who shares a name with an MTV veejay from the 1980's. Her name is Julie Brown.

Julie's issue is not specifically with the name. It's with people who who constantly ask, "Have you ever heard of 'Downtown' Julie Brown?" She can't wait until she marries her boyfriend and can change the surname. I guess one of the reasons she likes me is that I never asked the stupid question. Cliff Note: There are times when one knows that there's an obvious obnoxious question that begs NOT to be asked.

I find that it's better to have the same name of someone who isn't famous, but is somewhat high profile. I have shared the story before about "the other Cliff", Cliff Feightner, who lives in Florida. When I was working as an electronics sales associate in the Akron, Ohio area, I had people ask me, if I was related to a Cliff Feightner who was a supervisor at a major company in Akron. He had people asking him if he was related to me and had made it a point to come and introduce himself and his wife to me. Since this time, we have become friends and communicate mainly through Facebook. And as a certain irony, Cliff had been hired as a management trainee for a certain retail chain, that I have mentioned many times in this blog.

One of my goals is for Cliff and his sons, Erik and Chip, to be someday asked if they are related to that "Random Acts of Poetry" guy.

Sunday, April 21, 2013

Giving Birth To A Dream

In the coming week, I will be learning about infertility issues. My friend, Charlese Smith, has invited me to announce for a benefit 5K run that takes place in Copley, Ohio on April 27, 2013. The beneficiary of this event is the Giving Birth to a Dream Foundation.

Charlese and David Smith started this foundation when their daughter, Tashia Mingle, an RN with the Summa Health System, and her husband, Christopher, realized that they were facing infertility issues. They also realized that, in the views of the State of Ohio, infertility treatments are elective and very expensive.

Charlese and David, in starting the Giving Birth to a Dream foundation, wanted to give their daughter and son in law, and others who represent 10% of the population, a better chance to conceive children of their own. there has been other fund raisers and donations from local businesses.

This Saturday, the 5K will give many a chance to give to this very worthy organization. There will also be several great gift baskets raffled off. Most important, will be the hope offered through the event by funds and awareness raised.
The fun starts at 8:00am April 27, 2013
Copley High School
3807 Ridgewood Rd.
Copley, Ohio 44312

You can get more information about Giving Birth to a Dream by writing the foundation at this address:
3618 West Market St.
Suite #7
Fairlawn, Ohio 44333


Or by emailing


Cliff Note: Click on images to enlarge and read all about the foundation and this great upcoming event!

Thursday, April 11, 2013

A Smile Goes A Long Way

I have mentioned in the past my little routine when I go into any retail establishment. I always end every transaction with "Thank you for working at...." I'm always amazed at the reaction I get. And those who are used to my routine are disappointed when I fail to say that.

I've been stopping at a certain convenience store lately to get a snack and soft drink. There are a couple of employees there who have a different reaction to the way I end the transaction. One person, an older gentleman and curmudgeon of sorts, tells me that he doesn't work for free. Another employee, a young lady, has a quite different reaction.

One day I was there getting a Coke Zero and pack of crackers. I was in line to pay the older guy when Mae told me that her register was open. I went over to her side, paid for my items and thanked her for working at the store. Next time I stopped there, I went to Mae's register. She told me that she enjoyed my positive attitude and my smile when I stopped by.

I'm proud to say that I have made a new friend. Mae is part of a growing list of friends I have made of people from my kids generation who have respect for their elders. Anymore that is becoming more the exception than the rule. Maybe if more of us older folk smiled at the younger folks and showed them some respect, we'll get it back.

Saturday, March 02, 2013

Classic Post: And Whoo's Birthday is it Today?

Cliff Note: I originally wrote this poem a year ago for my poetry blog. It got some great response, so I'm posting it here. Enjoy!

Today's a birthday
Can't you see
And I will tell you
Now with glee
I know you want
To hear some more
This birthday man
Is Theodor
Who is this man
This Geisel guy
He now writes poems
Up in the sky
I will tell you
It is my plan
I will tell you
About the man
Growing up
You heard his rhymes
They are the greatest
Of all the times
All the rhymes
Wrote by the man
We all did read them
A dandy plan
But if you're puzzled
And need a clue
You might be stumped
And wonder whoo                                                                                                                  If Horton comes
And eats green ham
The Grinch might come
And hit you-BAM!
If red and blue fish
Will hop on pop
You'll guess this man
And you're on top
I now will say
I will let loose
This birthday guy
Is Doctor Seuss