Newsletter - Volume 2. Issue 13
©1998 MB-F, Inc.
You may use this paragraph as permission to reprint any article in the MB-F Newsletter providing 6rticles are printed in their entirety, proper credit is given to the author and to the MB-F Newsletter, and a copy of the publication in which it was reprinted is sent to the MB-F Newsletter, P.O. Box 22107, Greensboro, NC 27420. Opinions expressed by authors in this publication are their own and are not necessarily endorsed by the publisher. Publisher reserves the right to edit.
That said, this article will be a potpourri of odds and ends and trivia both dog related and not.
I first started this article while in Milwaukee for the five-show circuit (three in Waukesha and two in Elkhorn). Charlie Prager was greatly missed at Kettle Moraine. His daughter, Renee, ably carried on the tradition. At Waukesha, Sue and Ken Clemons had the task of filling Esme and Al Treens shoes. They did an admirable job with Esme and Al volunteering advice and support when solicited. Al and Esme have recently been the victims of erroneous gossip. It was rumored that Al died and that Esme gave up her judges license and resigned from Waukesha. None of this is true. I researched these rumors through the American Kennel Club and other sources. I was going to send Al a card as follows: "Dear Al, Sorry to hear of your demise, but am glad you decided to return to us. Being the tough old bird you are, I knew you would." (A few years ago, Al collapsed at the Heart of America banquet with food stuck in his windpipe. The Heimlich Maneuver did not work due to the thickness of his chest. He literally turned blue. It seemed like it took forever for the rescue squad to arrive. Al actually recovered enough to attend the next days after show party.) Talking to Al on the Combined Specialties setup day, he informed me he was declared legally blind. I replied, "Did you know that fact automatically makes you an all-breed judge?" It was amusing to me as to how many people responded to his declaration in a similar way as mine. It was so nice to see my Wisconsin friends.
We left Wisconsin and went straight to Canfield for the four-show cluster. I believe this to be the fastest growing cluster in the country at a fairgrounds that the exhibitors love. We concluded August with Sandusky, Lorain, Cudahy, Greater Racine, Oakland, back-to-back Pontiac, Agathon, Combined Specialties of Ohio, Ravenna, Western Reserve, back-to-back Saginaw, Topeka, Heart of America, and Leavenworth and I will address this in the next Newsletter.
Trivia Question: Who do you think were the three best women deceased judges?
In my mind, it would be Bea Godsil, Ramona VanCourt Jones, and Winnie Heckmann. Someone mentioned Ann Stevenson, with whom I never had much contact. What are your opinions?
I have also been asked for my opinion of who the most cordial deceased male judges were. My response is Raphael Shulte, J.J. Duncan, Ed Bracy, Larry Downey and Joe Faigle. I also had a fondness for L.E. Piper. More on other judge trivia in the next issue.
Another Dog Tale
My friend, Tina at the Holiday Inn in Waukesha, gave me the foundation for the following which I have embellished and amended.
Two good friends were told by their doctors that they needed to exercise by walking. They decided that they could kill two birds with one stone if they would take their German Shepherd Dog and Dachshund with them on their walk. One very hot day, they passed a saloon and decided that theyd like to have an ice cold beer. The bartender upon seeing them with their dogs, told the German Shepherd Dog owner that they had to leave. The Shepherd owner replied, "Oh, thats all right. Hes my seeing eye dog." The bartender said, "Oh, O.K. you can stay, but your friend has to remove his dog." The friend replied, "Oh, its O.K. hes my seeing eye dog." The bartender said, "Sir, thats a wiener dog (Dachshund) and Ive never seen a wiener dog (Dachshund)
that was a seeing eye dog." The Dachshund owner with a straight face, replied, " What? They gave me a wiener dog?!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!"
We were sorry to hear that Samuel Pizzino, judge and member of Western Reserve Kennel Club, passed away recently.
handlers is coming soon to the InfoDog website!
Watch for the special announcement on InfoDog!
Morris and Essex, A Brief History
by Howard Nygood & Connie Vanacore
The Morris and Essex Kennel Club show was arguably the most prestigious dog show held in the United States for 30 years, starting in 1927. The show was a gift to Geraldine Rockefeller Dodge as a wedding anniversary present every year by her husband, Marcellus P. Dodge. The Dodges were residents and benefactors of Madison, New Jersey and the show was held at their estate.
Each show cost approximately $40,000, a huge sum in those days. The club itself had only six or eight members, with Mrs. Dodge as President. She invited breeds to compete at Morris and Essex based upon what sort of entry a particular breed could offer. For this one show only, all AKC recognized breeds for which no classes were offered could compete in the Miscellaneous class.
The first show, in 1927, had an entry of 595 dogs in 18 breeds. Best in Show was a top-winning Irish Setter, Ch. Higgins Red Pat. The show peaked in 1939 with 4,456 dogs in 83 breeds. In 1941, the last show held before World War II forced its cancellation for four years, classes were offered in 90 of the 108 breeds recognized at that time. It was revived in 1946 with the final show being held in 1957. No show was held in 1954. In pre-war years a third or more of the breeds competing considered their classes at Morris and Essex as their annual specialty.
Morris and Essex was a benched, outdoor show held on the Dodge estate. All breeds, except those with entries of 200 or more, commenced judging at 10:00 AM, with groups scheduled for 3:00 PM. The shows were held in May with early shows held on Saturdays. The last three were on the Thursday before the Monmouth and Plainfield Kennel Club shows. The catalogs contained no advertising, but had a full-page portrait of every judge. The original price was $.50, which rose to $1.00 in 1939 and $2.00 during the final years.
A boxed lunch, served by uniformed butlers, was provided for all exhibitors. There were no RVs or trailers, but station wagons and box vans became the vehicles of choice. Dogs were crated or bench-chained on the benches under tenting through which electric lights were strung overhead. Everyone was required to wear a two-inch hexagonal string tag imprinted with the name of the show and the date. These became cherished keepsakes for exhibitors.
The trophy table was adorned with 383 Sterling Silver trophies to be won outright at the 1939 show. Offered in each breed annually a special class was held for American-bred dogs or bitches, champions and non-champions. The winner of these classes was the recipient of the M. Hartley Dodge, Jr. Memorial Trophy, given in memory of the Dodges son, who died in an automobile accident in France. The winners of this class competed for Best of Breed along with Best of Winners and the Specials entries. Mrs. Dodge offered a Sterling trophy for Best of Breed in each breed in the name of the judge officiating that day.
Morris and Essex was judged by many European breeder-judges and by great Canadian and American judges of the day. Some of the legendary handlers, as well as some of the most prominent owner-handlers won Best in Show. The 27 shows were won by representatives of all six groups.
A show of great beauty and great memories, it was held on a manicured lawn shaded by huge specimen trees, near the manor house and the elegant kennels which housed as many as 150 of Mrs. Dodges dogs.
In 1939 Geraldine Dodge founded an organization for the benefit of neglected and abandoned animals. She called it St. Huberts Giralda in honor of the patron saint of hounds, hunters and small animals. From modest beginnings, serving the local community of Madison, the shelter has emerged as a national model of humane care and education. Before she died, Mrs. Dodge was able to see the completed renovation of what had been stables into spacious, airy facilities for dogs and cats, modern offices and a meeting room. After her death in 1973 part of her vast collection of animal art was auctioned, with the proceeds endowing the shelter. The best of the collection is housed in a gallery on the grounds of the shelter, open for public view.
In 1997 a group of dog fanciers, some of whom attended Morris and Essex shows, organized to bring the club and the shows back to life. Their goal is to support St. Huberts Giralda while providing a show of elegance and style that emulates the original events. An "A" match was held in September, 1998. A "B" match is planned for Spring of 1999, with a point show scheduled for sometime in the Spring of the year 2000.
Share with our readers your club and what makes it special. Give us some club history, number of members, what you do in your community, charitable activities, special things you do during your show to make it the best day possible. If you have photos to illustrate ~ GREAT! (Be sure to clearly identify and provide a name and address for their return).
Send your article to:
I heard something a week ago during a radio broadcast while I was driving somewhere that caught my attention. If I had known Id still be thinking about it a week later, Id have pulled over and written it down.
The quote was attributed to Theodore Roosevelt and, with apologies regarding the exact verbiage, went something like this: Credit should go not to the critic who stands at the sidelines remarking on situations, but instead to the person who wades into the situation and works to make it better. I like this thought. Imagine what putting it into practice could do for our sport!
Our sport is chock full of critics - breeders, exhibitors, judges, stewards, club members, superintendents, writers and dog publications. None are shy about expressing their criticism. Some criticize with no knowledge of the subject on which they are offering a criticism; some are consumed with a cause; some are envious of another; some want personal gain, some are just malicious. There are also some who just like to be critical or stir up some piece of sensationalism, never mind the facts and, God knows we wouldnt want to do any research into them that would show we dont know what were talking about in the first place. Some criticize with a genuine interest in improving things for everyone, not just themselves or a select few.
The thing is, theres always room for improvement or a better way. Theres a saying heard often around our office: "No ONE of us is as good as ALL of us." In our organization it takes ALL 100 of us plus others outside the company, working toward a common goal or tackling a problem, to come up with the best show possible produced in the best way possible. The other thing is that you can criticize or complain about anything BUT at the same time you must ha a suggestion to improve the situation. CONstructive instead of DEstructive is the order of the day for positive change.
Lets try an experiment. Sit down with a pad and pencil and do some serious thinking about the sport. Make a list of a maximum of five things on which you have expressed critical judgments to others. Then look at that list and prioritize them - most important to least important to you.
Take the first item on your list. What are the FACTS about the situation? Not rumor, not hearsay, not innuendo, but actual facts. You may have to do some actual research to get TRUE information, what the decisions were that created the situation in the first place; why those decisions were made (what was the problem that those decisions were designed to fix?); frequencies, data, etc. In short, everything upon which you can base an informed, intelligent statement. Talk to a lot of different people, not just those you think will agree with you; find out how and if the problem affects other people. Is it really the problem you think it is or is it just your perception?
LISTEN to what they say. Invite others opinions and ideas without judging them. Dont try to blame or point fingers. You want an exchange of ideas and thoughts. Dont try to force your opinion on anyone; remember, youre gathering facts only right now. Emotions shouldnt be clouding your judgement. Yes, you can feel strongly about something, but it shouldnt be to the exclusion of what could be a better way. Your questions to others should be: Is ** a problem for you? How does ** affect you? How would you be affected if **? If we did ** would that be better or worse for you?
Is your own perception of the problem changing with the input of others? Has the definition of the problem changed? What would they do to change the situation that will actually make it better? What would you do to change the situation that will actually make it better? Talk to the people who would be affected by the changes? Can the action really be taken? What would the change actually accomplish? Would it actually make it better? Worse? How many other people/areas would such a change affect? Would that situation be better or worse? (Remember that a change can be good for one situation, but cause terrible problems as it gets down the line.)
Get people together to discuss and refine the solution. Define the problem accurately. Present your factual research to back up your statements. Present the solution straightforwardly with facts to back up how you arrived at the solution and present documentation on how the solution can work. If a change is made, follow-up to document how the change is working - is it working, not working? And remember, too, that change just for the sake of change is not productive.
Having judging schedules, breakdowns in schedules, tents, catalogs, unbenched shows, cluster shows, along with a myriad of other ideas, came from superintendents (many associated with MB-F) and willing clubs, both of whom were willing to jump in and tackle problems, who did their homework, gathered facts, talked to people and looked at what was best for everyone, not just one or two people.
Criticism based upon, rumor, innuendo, pot shots, gossip or ignorance of the facts is meaningless - and accomplishes nothing. Standing on the sidelines being critical is only lip service - and accomplishes nothing. Being willing to jump in there and tackle a problem and actually making the sport better for EVERYONE in it now ---- and in the future ---- is everything. Then, you are credible and credit-able.
We would like to hear from you!
Do you have a question to Ask the Superintendent?
Just jot it down or email it to:
November 4, 1998
Dear (MB-F Newsletter):
The letter (run) in your October Newsletter under the title "An Open Letter RE: CHF" has caused embarrassment. In September I sent Tom Crowe a copy of a letter our Health Trust Fund had drafted to Dog News about the good coming to Scottish Terrier research because of AKCs Canine Health Foundation. The letter was for Mr. Crowes "information only." It was not intended for publication anywhere but Dog News! Our embarrassment comes from the fact the letter you printed was never sent to Dog News. We had decided to revise the letter and send it after the Montgomery County shows. The new letter has not, in fact, even been printed in Dog News at this time!
We would appreciate your printing this letter and a brief apology from (the Newsletter) to Dog News and STCA Health Trust Fund for inadvertently printing our original letter. We do appreciate the awareness of canine health research promoted through coverage by both (the MB-F Newsletter) and Dog News.
To the revised Dog News letter we added information about the DNA collection for the AKC Canine Health Foundations new project "Development of a DNA-Based Diagnostic Test for Craniomandibular Osteopathy of the Cairn Terrier, West Highland White Terrier and Scottish Terrier Breeds." We hope (the MB-F Newsletter) will help spread the word that CMO DNA samples still are needed. Dr. Patrick Venta at Michigan State University has the basic amount of DNA needed, but samples may help bring answers sooner. Westie, Cairn and Scottie owners are urged to send additional DNA samples from CMO-affected dogs and their relatives.
At this time Dr. Venta has DNA from 15 affected Scotties, 12 affected Westies, 9 affected Cairns and 1 affected Scottie/Westie mix; plus DNA from relatives to total 197 samples. Collection is completely confidential. Dr. Venta provides free DNA brush kits for easy home collection. If you can provide samples, contact Dr. Venta: Ph 517/432-2515; Fax 517/355-5164, or e-mail firstname.lastname@example.org .
Carole Fry Owen,
(Dear Carole: The letter referred to above that appeared in the October 1998 issue of the MB-F Newsletter was sent in an envelope addressed to Mr. Crowe, specifically at the Newsletter. Any letter sent to a publication may be considered for publication, unless there are specific confidential matters or other material for background or informational purposes that are specified as not for publication. There was no note specifying the letter was meant for Mr. Crowes eyes alone, nor that it was a draft, nor that it had not been sent, only that it had been prompted by reading previously published material regarding the AKC CHF that had been in the Newsletter.
With that said, we can also appreciate any embarrassment resulting from the fact the letter published was not the letter in its final revised form that was sent to Dog News by the Health Trust and for this misunderstanding we apologize to the Health Trust and, of course, to Dog News. The MB-F Newsletter continues to heartily cheer the good work of the AKC CHF and the wonderful potential it creates for the true betterment of all breeds - and their owners. We look forward to hearing of their continuing advancements as projects go forward and also wish the Health Trust every success with its current project.)
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Day With The Greater Venice Kennel Club
A few weeks ago Lois, TJ Fuzzie and I had an opportunity to attend the fall show of the Greater Venice Kennel Club. We only get to a few dog shows these days but we certainly did enjoy this one. First of all we did not have to do any work as the running of the show was capably handled by personnel from our Detroit office. What we really did was visit with friends we have not seen in years.
We drove to the show on Friday afternoon and spent the night in a motel less than five minutes from the show grounds. They accepted dogs, as did other motels in the immediate area. Dogs were very welcome and there was plenty of area available for exercising them. Many people took advantage of this rather scarce opportunity at motels in recent years. Maybe, just maybe, exhibitors have changed their ways a bit concerning the use of hotels and have accepted the responsibility for their habits.
Aside from all of that I spent a great deal of time on Saturday, the day before the show, with Alan Stern and Joe Braun talking about old times and the many friends we knew and shared good times with at shows and away from shows. Joe and I talked a long while about Chris Teeter, a friend of both of us, who ran the Detroit Kennel Club. Joe and his wife, Mercedes, ran the Toledo Kennel Club. I reminisced that just before I resigned my handlers license that I went BIS at Toledo with a Peke named Ch. Bettinas Kow Kow, an Eastern Division Quaker Oats Award winner. Interestingly the other names of the litter that Kow Kow came from were Kow Flopp and Kow Plopp. Bettina Ward had a sense of humor. We could have talked for hours but other things about the setup interrupted.
Sunday was another wonderful day weather wise and otherwise. My very good friend, Ned Kauffman, came to the show. We spent the whole afternoon at the AKC education display talking about our lives together in the dog business. Many years ago when I was a handler I started Ned and Sue in dogs. They had never shown a dog and I had the opportunity to guide and foster their interest in shows until they became very well known and respected for their knowledge of breeding championship Afghans. Sue was a disciple of the gurus of genetic research and she used her knowledge to produce many champions with great records. In later years she worked with the Floral Gardens in Sarasota to produce rare orchids. Im not sure, but I believe she had the opportunity to name a rare orchid produced by her breeding skills. Sue was a wonderful and brilliant person with much to offer the dog business and life in general. It is more than sad that she now suffers from Alzheimers. Ned and I had so much to catch up with that we kind of resented being interrupted by people looking for AKC educational handouts, Neds job for the day. Incidentally, Ned himself has had a tough time with a nearly fatal incident which required extensive life threatening surgery. He has been recovering slowly over a period of several months. He now looks fine and he is his old enthusiastic self. He informed me he has accepted a judging assignment in March and hes raring to go. What else could you expect from a World War Aviator who was shot down in a B27 over Germany and survived many months in a German prison camp? He is a man to be admired for his perseverance and his great outlook on life. I am proud that he considers me his friend
I have no idea who won what at the show. I know that I won another day at a great show with many great people who consider me to be a friend. The grounds were lovely the show proceeded without a hitch and everyone seemed happy and enjoying the day, plus we had exceptionally great weather -- always a boost for fine show well done. Alan Stern was everywhere doing everything a show chairman is supposed to do and doing it well.
Congratulations Greater Venice Kennel Club and to all you great old timers for a great show and the most pleasurable weekend I have spent in a long time. Another item to put with my many memories of friends and the Sport I love.
In this months issue of our Newsletter we would like to spotlight two of our superintendents from the Greensboro, North Carolina office, whom many may have spoken with via phone or seen behind the desk at a show. Spotlighted this month are Robert Carlough and Anna Tiedemann.
Bob became involved in showing dogs in 1968 when the family purchased a German Shepherd Dog. It was felt that she, the GSD, needed some obedience training and the rest as they say is history.
His Mom enrolled in the Obedience classes offered by the Brookhaven Kennel Club and from there she was encouraged to try entering a Match Show. Bob used to accompany his Mom every week to training classes and so it was natural that he would do the same for the Match Shows. Because of really being an observer, Bob quickly became everyones dog sitter and watcher. "I guess as my reward, I was given my first dog to train. It was a Shetland Sheepdog, Rickgarbobs Robert Bruce CDX."
The whole family liked the breed and they quickly became interested in the conformation end. Another Shetland Sheepdog was purchased, Rickgarbobs Pumpkin Promise CD. Cory, as she was called, and Bob learned the ropes of conformation competition. He learned grooming techniques, and handling techniques from his good friends Tom Coen and Steve Barger.
While all of this was going on, I was still very much involved with Brookhaven Kennel Club. He helped to formulate the Brookhaven Kennel Club Junior members. "We created our own club constitution and held monthly meetings. I also arranged a field trip of the BKC Jrs to the home and kennel of the leading Dog Handlers of the time, Bob and Jane Forsyth. We also helped at all the BKC Match Shows and the Point Show."
When he turned 18, Bob became a regular member of Brookhaven Kennel Club and was very involved still. Some of his positions included, Obedience Class Director and Class Trainer, Board of Directors, Treasurer, Vice-President and finally President. To date Bob is still the youngest person to ever be elected President and at the same time be Point Show Chairman. During this time, while continuing to exhibit, Bob also decided to give judging a try. He became an AKC licensed judge of Shetland Sheepdogs in the early 80s.
"My next progression was to become an AKC licensed Superintendent. I wrote to the organization that I had been dealing with for a number of years regarding Brookhaven Kennel Club, MB-F Dog Shows. And you know the old expression, being in the right place at the right time? Well, thats what it was like for me. I never really believed I would ever receive a response from my letter, but I did! And in 1986 I joined the MB-F Dog Show Organization."
Here at MB-F Bobs duties include, Entry Department Manager, figuring all sweepstakes money, making all refunds after each show, organizing and getting the laptops to each show MB-F superintends, receiving the disks back from each show and downloading the results to our website, and then printing a marked catalog from each show. In between these duties are the shows on the weekends!
Dogs have been in Annas life for all but five years - starting with an Eskimo Spitz when she was six months old, a number of different breeds in between and a Saluki at the present time.
Her husband had never been allowed to have a dog as a youngster. When they got married he announced to her that he wanted to get a Basset Hound. They purchased their first Basset in 1957. This started their years in Bassets and their getting involved in dog shows and kennel clubs. Their children also enjoyed the showing of dogs but sometimes with a different breed.Their oldest daughter enjoyed the Basset Hounds and a Bloodhound; their other daughter fell in love with the Lhasa Apso and their son had his Whippet.
"After all the children grew up and left home (husband left, too) I decided to get out of dogs but the kennel club members would not hear of this. I started traveling to the shows with different members and ring stewarding. Next thing I knew I had Salukis, one of which was campaigned heavily for a couple of years."
During this time Fred Lyman kept asking if she would come to work for MB-F. Anna didnt take him seriously at first but later felt she should look into this. "After a visit to tour the office to see what really went on there, I sent Mr. Lyman my resume."
"In July of 1991, I moved from my home of 25 years in Summerville, SC to Greensboro, NC to start my job with MB-F. I arrived here thinking I knew a lot about dog shows and quickly found out how much I didnt know. Every day is a learning experience. This move has changed my life in a number of ways, hopefully for the better."
Q: There are times when I see a dog entered in more than one regular conformation class. I didnt think this could be done. What if it loses in the first class? Can it compete in the second?
A: A dog may be entered in as many classes as it is eligible to compete in at a show. Many times those who enter, for example, puppy and novice, or American bred and Open, are novice exhibitors showing novice animals. Heres the way it works: If the dog shows in the first class it MUST compete in the second class. The dogs placement in the first class has no bearing on whether the dog can be shown in the second class. Once a dog is shown it MUST compete in every other regular class in which it is entered and eligible. If, however, the dog loses in either class it may not compete for Winners. Or, they can miss the first class and only show in the second class. Many times the "old-timers" berate these folks and, not knowing the rules themselves, try to keep the exhibitor out of one of the classes. Remember these novices are enthusiastic and just want to show. Its their decision, based on giving them the appropriate information, how they want to handle the situation. Usually they decide to show in both classes "to get the experience." At their next shows they usually enter only one class.
Q: At a recent show I saw someone who had two dogs entered in two different classes take the wrong dog in the first class (right armband, wrong dog). When they realized what they had done they advised the judge. What happens?
A: This is an example of taking an extra minute to be sure you have the right armband AND the right dog. Pay attention and have additional help - you know, if you have two dogs entered of the same sex in different classes you might need help for Winners. Heres what happens: The judge would cross out the award given to the (wrong) dog in the first class, initial it, and make a notation the dog that competed was ineligible for the class. The "right" dog may not be shown in that first class because a class cannot be re-judged. The "wrong" dog may compete in the class in which it was entered.
Q: I am so confused about canceling a dog for a change of judge. Please explain.
A: Okay, first, lets talk about cancellations and withdrawals. You cannot CANCEL a dog for a change of judge that occurs after entries close. Under the rules, cancellations may be done ONLY PRIOR to entries closing. You may cancel a dog for any reason you want as long as we receive it in writing prior to the closing date and time. WITHDRAWALS may be done AFTER entries close if there is a change of judge. There are two situations that may occur - you may have a change thats listed in the judging program; you may have a change thats posted at the show when you get there. If the change of judge is LISTED IN THE JUDGING PROGRAM you may withdraw at any time prior to one-half hour before the start of ANY judging. You may mail or e-mail the withdrawal, however, it must be "postmarked" prior to the day of the show. You may turn in your withdrawal at the show within the time frame noted above. If the change is POSTED AT THE SHOW you may withdraw up to the time your breed was originally scheduled to be judged. This also must be done in writing. We need the show name and date, the dogs breed, name, AKC #, class entered, armband #, ownership and address (for refund purposes) and your name.
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A Letter From A Concerned Mother To Her Daughter
Dear Louanne Ellie Mae:
Im writing this letter slow because I know you cant read fast. We dont live where we did when you left home. Your dad read in the newspaper that most accidents happen within 20 miles from your home, so we moved. I wont be able to send you the address because the last family that lived here took the house numbers when they moved so that they wouldnt have to change their address. This place is really nice. It even has a washing machine. Im not sure it works so well though: last week I put a load in and pulled the chain and havent seem them since.
The weather isnt bad here. It rained twice last week; the first time for three days and the second time for four days.
About the coat you wanted me to send you, your Uncle Stanley said it would be too heavy to send in the mail with the buttons on, so we cut them off and put them in the pockets.
John locked his keys in the car yesterday. We were really worried because it took him two hours to get me and your father out.
Your sister had a baby this morning; but I havent found out what it is yet so I dont know if you are an aunt or an uncle. The baby looks just like your brother....
Uncle Ted fell in a whiskey vat last week. Some men tried to pull him out, but he fought them off playfully and drowned. We had him cremated and he burned for three days.
Three of your friends went off a bridge in a pick-up truck. Ralph was driving. He rolled down the window and swam to safety. Your other two friends were in back. They drowned because they couldnt get the tailgate down.
There isnt much more news at this time. Nothing much has happened.
P.S. I was going to send you some money but the envelope was already sealed.
Humor is a good thing.
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