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Know & Grow Monthly Magazine
"Miracles are instantaneous, they cannot be
summoned, but come of themselves, usually at
unlikely moments and to those who least expect them."

~ Katherine Anne Porter ... Quotes for YOU

March 28, 2005


TODAY'S TUNE[ON/OFF]


"Bittersweet Symphony "

Inspirational Music

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THIS WEEK'S ISSUE


From the Inside Out...
The Cab Ride


Yes You Can!...
Recognize
Job Burnout


Far Horizons...
Barking Sands
Beach


Untangling the Web
...
What a Site!
&
Computer Ease


Just for YOU...
Special Treats


Fascinating Facts...
Springing Forward


Laughing It Off...
Volunteer
Fire Department


Web-Wize Update...
Daily Security Alerts


Joyful Lifestyles...
Getting Smarter
with Music


Inspiration Online Magazine

BE the World
You Want to See!

Chance encounters often create magical opportunities for joy, understanding and personal growth. The key here is to stay open ... for even the most incredible sunbeam cannot pierce a wall of stone.

~ Chelle ~

 

From the Inside OutInspiration Online Newsletter - Cab Ride
THE CAB RIDE

Twenty years ago, I drove a cab for a living. It was a cowboy's life, a life for someone who wanted no boss.

What I did not realize was that it was also a ministry. Because I drove the night shift, my cab became a moving confessional. Passengers climbed in, sat behind me in total anonymity, and told me about their lives.

I encountered people whose lives amazed me, ennobled me, made me laugh and weep. But none touched me more than a woman I picked up late one August night.

I was responding to a call from a small brick fourplex in a quiet part of town. I assumed I was being sent to pick up some people who had been partying, or someone who had just had a fight with a lover, or a worker heading to an early shift at some factory for the industrial part of town. When I arrived at 2:30 a.m., the building was dark except for a single light in a ground floor window.

Under such circumstances, many drivers just honk once or twice, wait a minute, then drive away. But I had seen too many impoverished people who depended on taxis as their only means of transportation. Unless a situation smelled of danger, I always went to the door.

This passenger might be someone who needs my assistance, I reasoned to myself. So I walked to the door and knocked. "Just a minute," answered a frail, elderly voice. I could hear something being dragged across the floor. After a long pause, the door opened. A small woman in her 80s stood before me. She was wearing a print dress and a pillbox hat with a veil pinned on it, like somebody out of a 1940s movie. By her side was a small nylon suitcase.

The apartment looked as if no one had lived in it for years. All the furniture was covered with sheets. There were no clocks on the walls, no knickknacks or utensils on the counters. In the corner was a cardboard box filled with photos and glassware.

"Would you carry my bag out to the car?" she said. I took the suitcase to the cab, then returned to assist the woman. She took my arm, and we walked slowly toward the curb.

She kept thanking me for my kindness. "It's nothing," I told her. "I just try to treat my passengers the way I would want my mother treated." "Oh, you're such a good boy," she said.

When we got in the cab, she gave me an address, then asked, "Can you drive through downtown?" "It's not the shortest way," I answered quickly. "Oh, I don't mind," she said. "I'm in no hurry. I'm on my way to a hospice." I looked in the rearview mirror. Her eyes were glistening. "I don't have any family left," she continued. "The doctor says I don't have very long."

I quietly reached over and shut off the meter. "What route would you like me to take?" I asked.

For the next two hours, we drove through the city. She showed me the building where she had once worked as an elevator operator. We drove through the neighborhood where she and her husband had lived when they were newlyweds. She had me pull up in front of a furniture warehouse that had once been a ballroom where she had gone dancing as a girl.

Sometimes she'd ask me to slow in front of a particular building or corner and would sit staring into the darkness, saying nothing. As the first hint of sun was creasing the horizon, she suddenly said, "I'm tired. Let's go now."

We drove in silence to the address she had given me. It was a low building, like a small convalescent home, with a driveway that passed under a portico. Two orderlies came out to the cab as soon as we pulled up. They were solicitous and intent, watching her every move. They must have been expecting her.

I opened the trunk and took the small suitcase to the door. The woman was already seated in a wheelchair.

"How much do I owe you?" she asked, reaching into her purse. "Nothing," I said.

"You have to make a living," she answered. "There are other passengers," I responded.

Almost without thinking, I bent and gave her a hug. She held onto me tightly. "You gave an old woman a little moment of joy," she said. "Thank you."

I squeezed her hand, then walked into the dim morning light. Behind me, a door shut. It was the sound of the closing of a life.

I didn't pick up any more passengers that shift. I drove aimlessly, lost in thought. For the rest of that day, I could hardly talk. What if that woman had gotten an angry driver, or one who was impatient to end his shift? What if I had refused to take the run, or had honked once, then driven away? On a quick review, I don't think that I have done anything more important in my life.

We're conditioned to think that our lives revolve around great moments. But great moments often catch us unaware; beautifully wrapped in what others may consider a small one.

~Written By Kent Nerburn



Archives Here
To Read Many More Heartwarming Stories & Poetry

Inspiration Online Magazine
Ye
s You Can!

RECOGNIZE JOB BURNOUT

There comes a time in every professional's career when it is best to make a change. Being able to recognize burnout and know when to leave a company can keep you from finding yourself at a dead end later in your career. But how do you know when it's time to move on?

The following quiz, developed with findings from CareerBuilder.com's "Life at Work 2004" survey, will help you evaluate your position and answer this important question: Should I stay or should I go?

1. When it comes to your career path, which of the following statements are most relevant to your situation?

A. My supervisor and I have talked extensively about where I am going and what I can achieve, and have developed challenging but attainable goals to help me get there.

B. I receive a lot of positive feedback from upper management and have been told that there are good things in my future, but I'm not sure how or when I will get there.

C. I have been in the same position for so long, my business cards have our company's old logo.

D. I'm pretty sure I just got demoted last week.

If you answered B, C or D, you are not alone. According to CareerBuilder's survey, of the 35 percent of workers who plan to change jobs this year, 22 percent are leaving because they are unable to move up the company ladder.

If you have no idea where you are going in your company, talk to your manager and come up with a plan. If your company will not help you chart a course, it's time to look elsewhere.

2. Which statement describes your typical work week?

A. My company has made cutbacks and I have had to pick up the extra slack. I now put in the hours of two people.

B. The hours I work fluctuate depending on how busy the company is. There are seasons when I put in extra time, but I am compensated for the extra work with more time off in the slower months.

C. I consistently put in 40 to 45 hours a week.

D. What, you mean there are people who work fewer than 60 hours a week?

American workers experience burnout at an alarming rate. According to CareerBuilder, 68 percent of workers feel burnout at work, and 45 percent said their workloads are too heavy.

Yes, we all have to pick up some slack and "take one for the team" from time to time. But if you answered A and there is no end in sight, talk to your manager to figure out how to give yourself a break.

If your answer is D, do yourself and your health a favor and dust off your resume.

3. When it comes to personal recognition, which of the following do you most relate with?

A. I am so often referred to by my employee number in the office that I sometimes forget my own name.

B. I hear from my boss often — every time I do something wrong.

C. I receive a lot of feedback — both positive and negative -- from my manager.

D. The last time I received a raise, I used the extra money to buy Milli Vanilli concert tickets.

According to the survey, 43 percent of workers do not feel appreciated, and one-fourth of respondents felt that they were just a "number" within their organization. Recognition is important, and good companies implement programs to let employees know they are valued. Is your company doing anything to reward your efforts?

Do you ever receive bonuses, perks, or positive feedback? If you answered A, B or D, you need to realize that you deserve recognition for your successes. Find a company that will value your talents.

4. Which of the following best describes your relationship with your boss?

A. I feel that my sole purpose at the company is to make my boss look good.

B. We have a solid relationship based on mutual respect and appreciation.

C. I do a great job...when I do the opposite of what my boss does.

D. I think I saw my boss once last month, right before the door to his office was slammed.

Your relationship with your supervisor plays a big role in your overall professional happiness and success.

If you are working for someone who is always absent, unavailable, self-absorbed or untrustworthy, it's time to look for a better supervisor and a better opportunity.

~ CNN.CareerBuilder.com



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Far Horizons

BARKING SANDS BEACH

Inspiration Online Magazine - Barking Sands Beach
Island of Kauai
Learn More Here

For almost every aspect of Hawaiian life, there is a legend to explain the subject, but there is not always an explanation of the legend itself. So it is with the Legend of Barking Sands (see "Learn More" above). Sound-producing sand grains constitute one of nature's most puzzling and least understood physical phenomena. Exactly what governs this sounding mechanism is still an open question. Research has been hindered both by the rarity of the event and the difficulty in reproducing the sounds in a laboratory environment. Barking Sands Beach on the Hawaiian island of Kauai is known for these unusual sand grains composed of materials that, when rubbed together, vibrate and create a bark-like noise. The beach is part of Polihale State Park located on the extreme northwest side of Kauai — an area known as the Mana Plain where the beginning cliffs of the Na Pali can be seen. This wild and remote 17-mile long beach is one of the most beautiful stretches of white sand in the world and a wonderful place to experience nature. Though extremely secluded, there are showers, picnic tables and restrooms.

MORE: Inspiration Online Magazine - Travel ArchivesEnter Here


Untangling the Web

Inspiration Online Magazine
WHAT A SITE!

"Spring Writing Contest"
Using your amazing power of creativity, choose from one of the two photos and write a short story — 400 to 1000 words. Be wildly inventive; create characters, a plot line. Who are these people, what is this location? The stories will be judged on originality and good story telling. Grand Prize:
Writing for Life: Creating a Story of Your Own
.
Learn more at:
www.SelfHealingExpressions.com

Check HereInspirational Links



Inspiration Online Magazine

COMPUTER-EASE

"Liven Up Your Mouse"
Adjusting the speed of your mouse pointer and buttons can help liven up your mouse. Open Mouse in the Control Panel (click Start, Control Panel, Printers and Other Hardware, and then Mouse) Under Buttons, you can adjust the double-click speed to your preference. Just slide the Speed setting left or right to adjust. (NOTE: If you use an optical mouse with Windows XP, your interface and options may vary. You may need to search around for this feature). On the Pointer Options tab, under Motion, drag the slider make the mouse faster or slower. While you're in Mouse Properties, look around at the other cool stuff that might be available to personalize your mousing experience.


Computer Tips Here: HORIZONTAL SCROLLING
WHEN VISITING A WEBSITE

Check Here


Just for YOU
SPECIAL TREATS


His Holiness the Dalai Lama
"The Tibetan Photo Project"

The Tibetan Photo Project offers the first collection of photos taken by Tibetans living in exile, images of the Dalai Lama, informational texts and rare 1932 pictures of Tibet. The perspective provided from the modern history of Tibet and China reveals a great deal about the nature of China's future leadership. The lessons have become even more relevant with the rise to power by Hu Jintao, China's former hard-line secretary to Tibet.

www.TibetanPhotoProject.com

Fascinating Facts
SPRINGING FORWARD


Inspiration Online Magazine


What are the legends, history and
dangers of Easter Lilies?...

CHECK HERE:
Learn the Details Here


Laughing It Off
"Did You Hear about the Fire?"
VOLUNTEER FIRE DEPARTMENT

One dark night outside a small town in Minnesota, a fire started inside the local chemical plant and in a blink it exploded into massive flames. The alarm went out to all the fire departments from miles around.

When the volunteer fire fighters appeared on the scene, the chemical company president rushed to the fire chief and said, "All of our secret formulas are in the vault in the center of the plant. They must be saved. I will give $50,000 to the fire department that brings them out intact."

But the roaring flames held the firefighters off. Soon more fire departments had to be called in as the situation became desperate. As the firemen arrived, the president shouted out that the offer was now $100,000 to the fire department who could bring out the company's secret files.

From the distance, a lone siren was heard as another fire truck came into sight. It was the nearby Norwegian rural township volunteer Fire Company composed mainly of Norwegians over the age of 65.

To everyone's amazement, the little run-down fire engine, operated by these Norwegians, passed all the newer sleek engines parked outside the plant.....and drove straight into the middle of the inferno. Outside the other firemen watched as the Norwegian old timers jumped off and began to fight the fire with a performance and effort never seen before. Within a short time, the Norske old timers had extinguished the fire and saved the secret formulas.

The grateful chemical company president joyfully announced that for such a superhuman feat he was upping the reward to $200,000, and walked over to personally thank each of the brave, though elderly, Norske fire fighters.

The local TV news reporters rushed in after capturing the event on film asking, "What are you going to do with all that money?"

"Vell," said Ole Larsen, the 70-year-old fire chief, "da furst thing ve do is fix da brakes on dat crazy truck!"

~Contributed by Jane at www.The-Cats-Meow.com

ARCHIVES:..Humor Archives Here

Web-Wize Update
DAILY SECURITY ALERTS


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GLOBAL eMAIL MIGHT CONTAIN
SCAMS, HOAXES AND URBAN LEGENDS

Each of Us Can Make the Internet "Feel Better"
by Staying Informed and Aware...

Enter Here to Read Our April Report



Joyful Lifestyles: Weekly InsightsInspiration Online Magazine - Joy
GETTING SMARTER WITH MUSIC

If music makes you smarter, and exercise helps brain function, can exercising to music really boost brainpower? As recently reported by Reuters News, American researchers say it can.

Volunteers who listened to Vivaldi's "Four Seasons" while working out on a treadmill did much better on a test of verbal ability than when they exercised without music, a team at Ohio State University found. "Evidence suggests that exercise improves the cognitive performance of people with coronary artery disease," said psychologist Charles Emery, who led the study.

"And listening to music is thought to enhance brainpower. We wanted to put the two results together," Emery added. Writing in the latest issue of the journal Heart & Lung, Emery and colleagues said they studied 33 men and women taking part in a cardiac rehabilitation program after having bypass surgery, angioplasty or other procedures to treat clogged arteries.

The volunteers said they felt better emotionally and mentally after working out with or without the music. But their improvement on the verbal fluency test doubled after listening to music on the treadmills.

"Exercise seems to cause positive changes in the nervous system, and these changes may have a direct effect on cognitive ability," Emery said. "Listening to music may influence cognitive function through different pathways in the brain. The combination of music and exercise may stimulate and increase cognitive arousal while helping to organize cognitive output."

Emery said he now wanted to test people using music of their own choice. "We used 'The Four Seasons' because of its moderate tempo and positive effects on medical patients in previous research. But given the range of music preferences among patients, it's especially important to evaluate the influence of other types of music on cognitive outcomes."

Chelle Thompson ('Shay'), Editor

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