Wednesday, January 6, 2016

Through the Keyhole - January 2016

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Through the Keyhole

Informative & Interesting... not your everyday company newsletter.
Welcome 2016!

Well, it is January 4th and you are back at work after a long Season.  Time for the kids to hit the books (thank God) and for normal routines to begin.  January is a time when we set goals for the coming year and some of us make resolutions to do something good for our personal being. 

According to Forbes just 8% of people achieve their New Year's resolutions and here is how they do it:  1) Keep it Simple 2) Make it Tangible 3) Make it Obvious 4) Believe you can do it. Complete Article here.

I have made a few resolutions and one of them is to keep you entertained by this silly newsletter.  Truth be told, it is a collection of what I find interesting during the previous month.  Things from amusing to puzzling to fascinating will find their way to  I am glad people like reading it and I appreciate the kind feedback I get each and every month.  Thank you!

And now for a new keyhole picture above- Can you guess where it is?

"Dubbed the Happiest Place on Earth, this place may surprise you. The secret network of underground tunnels make it easy to remove garbage. However, that doesn't stop the feral cat population from growing.  Many people actually live here on Main Street "

Last month, Don Lynch made the guess of Dubai UAE.  Way to go Don.  Say hi to "Big Shirley" for me (inside joke).

Correct answers will be given recognition but half the fun is trying to figure it out.  The correct answer will be revealed in the subsequent issue.  Good luck and have fun.

If you like this newsletter, forward it to someone else or sign them up HERE.

As always, send any items you think are newsworthy, interesting or just plain odd to

Palm Islands, Dubai - Keyhole Answer

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"This place is man made and shows that having too much money makes you do crazy things. The people have dredged the sea and created this place out of sand.  Not only is it an amazing feat but it is also quite impressive that you can have people live there with modern amenities."This place is crazy and the amount of excess in this country is off the charts.  The sea was dredged to create this amazing engineering marvel. The problem I see is that you are building your house literally on SAND.  Has anyone ever heard the parable of building your house on sand?  Not sure how this became a phenomenon but then again, they don't read the bible there...

To me, this is over the top, crazy and the exhibition of oil wealth.  If the price of oil keeps falling who knows if they can keep this man made island afloat...

The Palm Islands are two artificial islands, Palm Jumeirah and Palm Jebel Ali, on the coast of Dubai, United Arab Emirates. As of November 2014, only Palm Jumeirah has been completed. This island takes the form of a palm tree, topped by a crescent. When complete, Palm Jebel Ali will take a similar shape; both islands will be host to a large number of residential, leisure and entertainment centres and will add a total of 520 kilometres of non-public beaches to the city of Dubai.

The creation of the Palm Jumeirah began in June 2001. Shortly after, the Palm Jebel Ali was announced and reclamation work began. A third island was planned and construction started, but this project was later remodeled and renamed to Deira Island.

Here's what people are saying:

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Trip Advisor

How it was built (video)

International Businss Article

Atlantis Resort (video)

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TURNkey Christmas Party Photos...

Group Photo


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Tomb of the Unknown Soldier Facts - WOW

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1. How many steps does the guard take during his walk across the tomb of the Unknowns and why?

21 steps. It alludes to the twenty-one gun salute, which is the highest honor given any military or foreign dignitary.

2. How long does he hesitate after his about face to begin his return walk and why?

21 seconds for the same reason as answer number 1.

3. Why are his gloves wet?

His gloves are moistened to prevent his losing his grip on the rifle.

4. Does he carry his rifle on the same shoulder all the time, and if not, why not?

He carries the rifle on the shoulder away from the tomb After his march across the path, he executes an about face, and moves the rifle to the outside shoulder.

5. How often are the guards changed?

Guards are changed every thirty minutes, twenty-four hours a day, 365 days a year.

6. What are the physical traits of the guard limited to?

For a person to apply for guard duty at the tomb, he must be between 5' 10" and 6' 2" tall and his waist size cannot exceed 30."

Other requirements of the Guard:

They must commit 2 years of life to guard the tomb, live in a barracks under the tomb, and cannot drink any alcohol on or off duty for the rest of their lives.

They cannot swear in public for the rest of their lives and cannot disgrace the uniform (fighting) or the tomb in any way.

After two years, the guard is given a wreath pin that is worn on their lapel signifying they served as guard of the tomb. There are only 400 presently worn. The guard must obey these rules for the rest of their lives or give up the wreath pin.

The shoes are specially made with very thick soles to keep the heat and cold from their feet. There are metal heel plates that extend to the top of the shoe in order to make the loud click as they come to a halt. There are no wrinkles, folds or lint on the uniform. Guards dress for duty in front of a full-length mirror.

The first six months of duty a guard cannot talk to anyone, nor watch TV. All off duty time is spent studying the 175 notable people laid to rest in Arlington National Cemetery. A guard must memorize who they are and where they are interred. Among the notables are: President Taft, Joe E. Lewis (the boxer), and Medal of Honor winner Audie Murphy (the most decorated soldier of WWII) of Hollywood fame. Every guard spends five hours a day getting his uniforms ready for guard duty.

Illinois Funeral Home gets approval to serve liquor...


I am going to take a moment to toast my own doing (pun intended)...            

I grew up above this funeral home and all of our family parties are held upstairs where my mother resides.  Contrary to popular belief, the business is not like "6 Feet Under", the HBO drama from years ago.  It is, however, a business that is run more like an extension of my family's home.  In fact, on all Christmas Eve's the family party spills into the chapel where the children of the family put on a show much to the pleasure of the adults. Even in the old days at our original funeral home on the west side, the party spilling into the funeral home happened at each Christmas.

Moreover, people are asking more frequently for celebrations of life or saying "We want to have a party like Mom wanted."  In September 2015, I wrote a letter to the Village of Wheeling to ask permission to serve alcohol at the funeral home.  What followed in December was quite something.

See the articles below and see what the media picked up.  It surprised me that this was so noteworthy and we were all taken back by the newspaper, radio and TV coverage. It was a fun few days for my brother and I to talk about this subject with so many people.

Catering and Beverage Packages will begin sometime in January.  Cheers!

Letter to the Village (original request)

Daily Herald (article)

Chicago Tribune (article)

WBBM / CBS Radio (radio clip)

WGNTV (article)

What it looks like on Christmas Eve at the Office...

Lauren and Fernando sporting their Christmas wear.

This article was written in 1984.  Still resonates.
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Charley Reese (who died in 2013) penned an editorial about 545 people being "responsible for the domestic problems that plague" the U.S.  The photo above reminds us how long ago it was since this article was written.

Politicians, as I have often said, are the only people in the world who create problems and then campaign against them.

Everything on the Republican contract is a problem created by Congress. Too much bureaucracy? Blame Congress. Too many rules?

Blame Congress. Unjust tax laws? Congress wrote them.

Out-of-control bureaucracy? Congress authorizes everything bureaucracies do. Americans dying in Third World rat holes on stupid U.N. missions? Congress allows it. The annual deficits?

Congress votes for them. The $4 trillion plus debt? Congress created it.

To put it into perspective just remember that 100 percent of the power of the federal government comes from the U.S. Constitution. If it's not in the Constitution, it's not authorized.

Then read your Constitution. All 100 percent of the power of the federal government is invested solely in 545 individual human beings. That's all. Of 260 million Americans, only 545 of them wield 100 percent of the power of the federal government.

That's 435 members of the U.S. House, 100 senators, one president and nine Supreme Court justices. Anything involving government that is wrong is 100 percent their fault.

I exclude the vice president because constitutionally he has no power except to preside over the Senate and to vote only in the case of a tie. I exclude the Federal Reserve because Congress created it and all its power is power Congress delegated to it and could withdraw anytime it chooses to do so. In fact, all the power exercised by the 3 million or so other federal employees is power delegated from the 545.

Profound Historic Photos

100 Best Movie Lines Ever Compiled (10 minutes)

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100 Years of Movies and 100 Great Lines... "Frankly my dear, I don't give a damn." and "May the force be with you." are two of them...

no second chance for these well timed photos...


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Convertible Airplane?
Convertible plane

After two years of scrupulous research, the United States Patent and Trademark Office accepted a patent for one of the strangest designs we've seen for a plane. Airbus's 'convertible' plane designs show a detachable cabin, which would allow passengers to board quickly before being attached to the rest of the aircraft.

In a business that's all about timing, the newly patented designs could allow airlines to cut turn around times considerably. The detachable cabin would be removed from the roof with the help of a specialized crane, allowing boarding and disembarkment to happen in record time. The cabin full of arriving passengers would be extracted and replaced by another, already full of people going in the other direction. Speedy.

For airlines, reducing turn around times is a sure-fire money-maker. A plane flying a route of around 500 miles (for example, London - Zurich) usually makes a 40-minute turn around, meaning that the airline can operate 2,300 flights with that aircraft every year. By reducing that turn-around time by 10 minutes, the number of flights that one aircraft can operate approaches 2,500 - a huge boost to profitability of an airline's fleet.

Boeing has estimated that by reducing turn around times by 20%, the overall total cost of managing each plane in a fleet drops by 5%. For large airlines, as well as the aviation industry in general, the savings could be enormous.


Google requests by US STATE

Most Embarrassing Plane- Pooping Story Ever


This is a story about a guy who got to fly privately from Las Vegas and things didn't go too well for him personally.  I cried laughing the first time I read this...and excuse his language - it just wouldn't be as funny if I took it out.  You will have to go to the article to read the entire text.  HILARIOUS.

Just over halfway through the flight, all the coffee in my stomach feels like it's percolating its way down into my lower intestine. I hunker down and try and focus on other things. What feels like an hour, but probably isn't more than twenty minutes, passes. We then enter what turns out to be pretty violent turbulence. With each bounce, I have to fight my body, trying not to shit my pants. "Thirty minutes to landing, maybe forty five" I try and tell myself, each jostle a gamble I can't afford to lose. I signal to [the flight attendant] and she heads toward me.

"Excuse me, where is the bathroom, because I don't see a door?" I ask while still devoting considerable energy to fighting off what starts to feel like someone shook a seltzer bottle and shoved it up my ass. She looks at me, bemused, and says, "Well, we don't really have one per se." She continues, "Technically, we have one, but it's really just for emergencies. Don't worry, we're landing shortly anyway."
"I'm pretty sure this qualifies as an emergency," I manage to mutter through my grimace.

The rest of the story


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“The moment someone says, 'Hey, everyone, listen to the words in this song,' your party is over.”

-Amy Sedaris

Start the year off right - Egg White Breakfast
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Egg White Turkey Sausage Omelette

4 Egg Whites
2 Links of Turkey Sausage Cooked and Cut up into inch pieces
1/8 cup chopped Peppers
1/8 cup chopped Green Onions
2 Slices Sharp Cheddar Cheese or any cheese that you desire
1 Teaspoon Butter or Cooking Spray

Scramble the egg whites in a bowl, add the turkey sausage, peppers and green onions and mix together.
Melt the butter or use the cooking spray in a frying pan and pour in the egg mixture.
When eggs are firm enough, flip over to cook other side.
When eggs are almost done, add the cheese on top, cover pan and turn off heat and wait 30 seconds.

I like mine with some Sriracha.  Mmmm.

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