In order to balance out the mostly negative news that we are bombarded with on a daily basis, here is a round-up of just some of the great things that have happened in the last few months that may have escaped your radar screen or gotten lost in the quagmire.
OUR TEACHERS ROCK
Congratulations to Lois Standley and Krista Jones of Bellevue Elementary School. They have been chosen as Idaho finalists for the Presidential Award for Excellence in Mathematics and Science Teaching. Standley has been nominated in the Math category, and Jones in Science. If they win, they will get $10,000 and a trip to Washington, DC. Good luck ladies!!!! [ Idaho Statesman, January 15, 2005 ]
THEY'LL BE OKAY
While the tsunami that recently wracked parts of Asia, Africa and Indonesia has left untold amounts of death, destruction and grief in its wake, there is hope for the "tsunami generation." According to Daniel Wordsworth, who works for the Christian Children's Fund, and citing evidence and research on children who have survived brutal conditions, he guesses that 75% of the children who survived the tsunami "will emerge unscathed" and that about 3% will have emotional problems that will linger and need to be dealt with. Amazing and very hopeful predictions considering the circumstances. [ USA Today, January 10, 2005 ]
REHABILITATION ALIVE AND WELL
On a lighter note, it appears that even though most vestiges of the concept of "rehabilitation" has been abandoned by our penal system, inmates do not emerge without learning lessons. I talked with a friend who recently served some time who shared with me the following knowledge he felt he had gained from his experience behind bars:
1. Shampoo freezes
2. Toothpaste doesn't
3. Toilet Paper floats
4. Crime does pay - the government (he was charged $350 for accommodations)
5. The zig-zag
DON'T FORGET TO PUT ON YOUR HIPPO SWEAT!!!
Researchers in Japan have recently discovered that hippo "secretion" is therapeutic. The reddish fluid which oozes out of their pores, once thought to be blood by the ancient Greeks, turns out to have a lot of potential. It appears that the sweat is waterproof, a fabulous sunscreen [have you ever seen a hippo with a burn?] and may also have antibiotic properties. The main stumbling block to mass production appears to be what one might have thought would have been obvious - it stinks. [ National Geographic, November 2004 ]