A person’s level of spiritual maturity can be tested by the amount of truth he or she can take without getting angry or upset.

Vernon Howard

Stupid Humans Make the News

On our annual Christmas visit to Richmond, VA, we walked around the Maymont Park for some exercise, fresh air, and to see the animals. We stopped at the bear area to look at the two black bears, who were sleeping in caves above the pond. The bears had several acres with a pond and a hillside with caves, which is about as good as a bear in captivity can expect.

Now the two bears are dead due to incredibly stupid humans.

Link: | City to probe bear deaths

The boy and a parent – whom officials would not name – climbed a 4-foot wooden fence to enter a restricted area around the bear habitat on Saturday. The boy apparently tried to feed one of the bears an apple through the 10-foot chain-link fence that surrounds the bear exhibit and was bitten.

The bears were sedated and given a lethal injection after Maymont met behind closed doors for nearly three hours with 14 officials, including from Game and Inland Fisheries and the Virginia Department of Health. They examined alternatives, including quarantining the bears and administering rabies treatment to the child.

In addition to looking into whether the parent was negligent or guilty of trespassing, the city will consider whether the bear’s pen was adequately fenced off.

Rest In Peace Aunt Dot

My late father’s sister died Friday. She lived a long, interesting life, and was the last living sibling of my father’s brothers and sisters. Aunt Dot and my father were born in 1916 and 1917, respectively, and lived into the 21st century. What amazing changes they witnessed in their long lives.

Link: | Richmond Virginia Obituary.

Dorothy M. Shelton Dorothy M. Shelton, 90, of Richmond, widow of Ned Shelton, passed away February 24, 2006 at Lucy Corr Village. She is survived by her daughters, Elizabeth Evans and husband, Bobby of Supply, N.C., and Mary Lou Cowles and husband, Gary of Chesterfield; five grandchildren and six great-grandchildren.

Dermatologist Exam Pricing

I recently had a head-to-toe examination by my dermatologist. (I have a light complexion and freckles.)

It cost $295 for a 15 minute exam. Is that a reasonable price? (Since I’m self-employed, I pay non-major medical expenses myself.) Comments welcome.

Blue Mischief

Blue on Feb 7, 2006

Don’t be deceived by that pretty face.

She’s a bird watching, toe biting, toilet paper unrolling, caserole licking, jewelry hiding, fax shredding, shoulder sitting, printer inspecting, wall scratching, kitchen counter walking, table leg pole dancing, tooth brush chewing, paw dipping, wolverine imitating, hardwood floor skating, nose touching, toy retrieving, table jumping, trash can diving, squirrel tracking, floss eating, door charging, mantle climbing, leg rubbing, rug wrestling, shoe lacing pulling, shower curtain shredding, tea spilling, earbud biting, mischief making charmer.

She’s also the happiest living thing I’ve ever seen. It’s very difficult to get mad at her regardless of what she does.

P.S. Blue is almost 9 months old here. Ann took the photo on Feb 7, 2006. Blue loves fast and vigorous play with children (credit to Allie W.).

I Heard Sandhill Cranes Today

I heard the wonderful chortling sound of sandhill cranes today as they passed over our neighborhood. I wasn’t able to spot the flocks, but it sounded like several hundred.

Since I didn’t see them, I wasn’t able to confirm that they were going North. Seems early to be headed North, unless they know more about the weather than we do.