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1  General / Discussion / Re: Good morning, good afternoon, good evening! (2015) on: April 23, 2015, 06:49:18 AM
Good morning to all the monkeys.  Thanks for posting your wonderful morning greetings~
2  General / Discussion / Re: Good morning, good afternoon, good evening! (# 4) on: December 08, 2014, 02:11:26 PM
Love it!
3  Law & Order / Natalee Holloway / Joran Stabbed In Prison on: November 03, 2014, 07:04:19 PM
http://latino.foxnews.com/latino/news/2014/11/03/joran-van-der-sloot-reportedly-stabbed-in-peruvian-prison-critically-injured/
4  General / Discussion / Re: Good morning, good afternoon, good evening! (# 4) on: October 28, 2014, 10:57:06 AM
Thank you for continuing to post in here even though we don't ever come by anymore. I miss this forum a lot. I came in to say hello and see if anyone else ever drops by.
5  General / Discussion / Happy Birthday YAP!! 2013 on: September 18, 2013, 06:25:22 AM
Today is your birthday....woot woot!!!   dancing cow dancing cow dancing cow dancing cow

Happy Birthday to you!! May you have many more!! party party balloons hbday4 hballoons party party
6  General / Discussion / Re: Happy Birthday 2013 Casa! on: July 12, 2013, 12:32:39 PM
Happy birthday to you!
Happy birthday to you!
Happy birthday, dearest Casa!!!!
Happy birthday to you!!



 birthday bdcake hballoons party
7  General / Discussion / Re: A Slice of Life on: July 05, 2013, 06:03:42 AM
And the idea was all you guys...she just used something started by all of you. I was very proud of her. She asked me...do you think they will mind...I said...no, I think it will be just fine. They loved the story of how GM and his adventures had carried him all over the world. Thanks everyone.
8  General / Discussion / Re: A Slice of Life on: July 03, 2013, 07:15:59 PM
A little addition to Laura getting this job is what she took with her to her interview. Since I wasn't there I don't know all the details but she had talked the week she was on vacation to me about something that was creative she could present to the library board. Then the day before she returns she tells me she is taking GM with her to the interview. Yes, the monkey went to the interview. He was her inspiration for a summer program she plans to design and implement next summer. She will probably have to make a slight design change in GM so she won't be violating any copyright laws, but her plan is to make facsimiles of GM on poster board and send them with children on their vacations next summer and make a display that fall with photos of all the places the kids took GM. I guess there could be a children's book Tales of the Gold Monkey yet. I think it would be an awesome idea...what do you guys think.  BTW, the board loved her idea!
9  General / Discussion / Re: A Slice of Life on: July 03, 2013, 07:04:03 PM
Buffalo, bears and elk oh my!

Laura Pitts | Posted: Monday, July 1, 2013 5:36 pm

It was a dizzy, stomach dropping ride throughout the curvy roads of Yellowstone National Park. And while my body was a little unsure of how to manage standing up on a moving, full passenger tour bus, my legs braced on the side of the seats and my heavy camera poised and ready to take pictures, the excitement in me grew at the possibility of seeing wildlife in its most natural and raw setting.

I'm not a hunter by any means. Never have been and quite honestly never will be. But I think I might have tapped into the euphoric feeling that hunters get when they find themselves up close and personal with the beasts of nature.

My summer vacation was one of the Old West, exploring various areas of Wyoming and South Dakota with a group of teachers and friends from my hometown, many of which taught me in high school. It was an educational trip that taught me so much about a part of America I rarely knew existed, save for the stories in movies, books, and the occasional page on my history book.

Take your pick of animals to see in Yellowstone National Park and you will be quite impressed with what you actually see. Buffalo, elk, pronghorn, moose, coyotes, mountain lions, wolves, bighorn sheep. Those of us on the bus made a list of all the animals we wanted to see while in the park, and marked them off with much celebration each time we came across one.

The start of our trip mingled with a bus load of cheers at the sight of a buffalo. And by the end of the journey we had seen most likely every buffalo inside the park. Baby buffalo, mama buffalo and the lone ranger bachelor buffalo standing in a field by themselves - yes we saw them close up to the bus, within touching distance and far off into the plains of the what we mockingly called the Serengeti of Yellowstone.

I also upset a park ranger or two, being the nosy girl I can be and trying my sneaky hand at getting close to capture the perfect photograph.

During our last day at Yellowstone our wonderful tour bus driver took us to all lookout points of the Grand Canyon of Yellowstone. The North and South Rim of the canyon has numerous places to pull over and snap a few photos while taking in the wonderful view. However, after about an hour of stopping and seeing much of the same scenery, a group of us decided to be adventurous and really sink our feet into the park’s soil.

After all, a park ranger told me that nearly 95 percent of all the people who visit Yellowstone National Park rarely get out of their car and actually use their senses to enjoy it.

High on a hill, just a few feet away from a very busy and crowded lookout point of the canyon, an elk sat alert among the tree trunks. Blink and you would have missed him. In fact, it required many of us to take a double look just to make sure we weren't seeing "tree elk" - the pesky little elk that turn out to be just trees after all.

My self and another avid photographer on the trip had our long camera lenses out, ready to take photos, when two of the other members of our group motioned for us to follow them quietly up the far corner of the hill for a better look.

We did so in silence, though by the time I manage to climb the hill I was huffing and puffing on the thin air. Still catching my breath, a part of me faded away the instance I saw the animal sitting there, ever so carefully looking at us, while our camera shutters clicked fast and loud.

We really pushed ourselves to far on that venture, because within minutes the massive elk stood up and turned toward us, as if ready to charge. Fear only crept in the moment I turned my back and slowly, carefully, trotted myself down the hill and to safety.

The park ranger was not happy with us, and reminded us quickly that we could have been killed. Of course none of that really matter to me at the time. The thrill of the adventure is what did it for me. Across the road, another elk had been spotted by some more people and we, once again, pressed our limits closing in to take photos.

We would have had some amazing photos of a buffalo as well, but the park ranger refused to let us anywhere near him to take pictures.

Which is probably a good thing if you've ever had the educational opportunity to see what happens when a buffalo attacks you. It’s not pretty, let me tell you.

By the end of the trip we had seen our share of animals, including bears and the occasional moose while on our way to South Dakota.

But to see the wildlife in such a natural state, living and moving all on its own with no care in the world - that was truly beautiful.

Who knew animal hunting could be so much fun?

Well, at least my form of animal hunting, anyway.
10  General / Discussion / Re: A Slice of Life on: July 03, 2013, 07:00:02 PM
Avoid the prairie dog burrow

Laura Pitts | Posted: Tuesday, June 25, 2013 5:35 pm

After two years of trying to figure out what the bumper sticker, "And a guinea pig ain't a prairie dog," meant, I think I've finally uncovered the truth.

Take it for what you will, as I'm sure this realization is more of Laura-ology than anything.Yet I still find it fascinating, and also funny, the way the meaning of certain things in life can happen up on you at the strangest of places.

The meaning of the bumper sticker came to me after attempting to climb up the large boulders at the base of Devils Tower National Monument in Wyoming a few weeks ago.

As part of my summer vacation, I traveled with a close group of friends on a tour of the Old West, taking in the history of Jackson Hole, Wyo., Grand Teton National Park, Yellowstone National Park and eventually Keystone, S.D. While there are many stories to tell about the entire experience (ones that should keep this column entertaining for the duration of summer), I couldn't help but share my understanding that prairie dogs really aren't guinea pigs, in any sense of the phrase.

If you recall, a few years ago I wrote a column on the subject after having seen the bumper sticker while traveling home from, you guessed it, vacation.

During this year's vacation, I saw my first collection of prairie dogs living and doing their own thing at the bottom of the foothills of Devils Tower.

Devils Tower, a protruding geologic feature near the rolling area of the Black Hills, just a few miles from the South Dakota and Wyoming state line, is a sacred site to the Lakota Native American tribe as well as others.

Devils Tower was the first National Monument, declared in the U.S. in 1906 by U.S. President. Theodore Roosevelt. If you have watched the ending of Steven Spielberg's "Close Encounters of the Third Kind," then you've probably seen Devils Tower. And trust me, if you are ever on your way to see it up close and personal, I promise you that you will not miss the 5,114 foot piece of monolith rising from the ground.

The tour bus only gave us 30 minutes to take in the tower. And like a bunch of fire ants emerging from a disturbed mound, we scattered off the bus in lightning fashion, hoping to enjoy as much the experience as possible.

Some of us climbed higher than the others, while others preferred to stay on the level ground. I personally found a happy medium among the boulders, laughing at the over caution one traveling buddy had for both of our safety.

Yes, there is a lot of lore and legend to how the rock formation was formed and what exactly is its purpose, but at the heart of it is a dangerous yet adventurous longing for anyone who dares to make the climb from the smooth surface of the pathway and across the giant, over sized boulders that look as if they were dropped from the sky and scattered around the tower's base.

Danger lurked as I climbed from one rock to the next, my breath thin from the change in altitude as I went higher and farther up. The rocks were unstable and required me to use all of my strength and balance to make it a good way up. I most certainly did not have the required footwear for the climb, nor the proper clothing, as opened toed shoes, shorts and a t-shirt would prove painful for any misstep I might take. But I climbed anyway.

There is something monumental and oddly inspiring about the threat of danger and adventure posed together in the same setting. I could easily have broken my leg (or my camera) from the climb, or I could have stayed back on the bus and admired the journey from far away, as many of the older travelers on the bus chose to do.

And of course there were the prairie dogs.

On our way back to the main road, the prairie dogs would pop their heads out of their burrows, running from home to home in search of grass, roots and seeds.

I took a few photos and admired how cute they looked with their almond shaped eyes, sandy brown fur, and individual personalities showing through their straight edged sitting stature on the ground.

The bus slowed down so we could take some photos and I commented about how "cute" they looked. Then I saw the sign that clearly said danger with specific instructions to keep away from the prairie dogs and not to touch them or go looking in the ground for them.

Apparently the cuteness is just an act.

Don't put your hand in a vacant prairie dog burrow, as horned lizards and snakes have no problem taking over the empty home, and making themselves very much obliged to bite anything that comes near. Prairie dogs also carry diseases, including tularemia, a bacterial disease, and monkey pox - all of which are life threatening to humans.

I'm sure guinea pigs aren't much better with some of the nuisances (and possibly diseases) they carry, but one thing is for sure, you can't keep a prairie dog as a pet.

And you can't sit on the bus and admire the scenery during a specific adventure or moment that comes your way and expect to discover something new. You have to take chances and risks that are far out of your comfort zone.

Sometimes you have to step out of the bus and climb, even if you aren't sure where you are going or how you will get there. You just have to climb. And of course avoid the prairie dog burrows along the way.
11  General / Discussion / Re: A Slice of Life on: July 03, 2013, 06:58:10 PM
VBS programs worth taking kids to

Laura Pitts | Posted: Tuesday, June 18, 2013 5:33 pm

Some of my best summer memories rest in the afternoons spent at Vacation Bible Schools, orVBS as it is known, in my community.

I was one of those kids that jumped from VBS to VBS each week like a squirrel jumping from tree to tree.

The anticipation with each VBS I attended never did surpass the next. On any given week during June I would be down the street at the Church of Christ or just a few miles down to the First Baptist Church.

All of my friends made VBS a big deal, especially when it was at their home church. It wasn’t uncommon for my mother to haul a large group of us in the car and drop us off at VBS.

An evening of arts and crafts, playing games, eating cookies, singing songs and, of course, learning about the Bible.

As I heard recently, wouldn’t it have been nice to know you were in the good old days before they left? VBS on a hot June afternoon sure were some of the good old days. And when the time came for me to age out of the program, I will admit that many tears were shed.

I wish more churches in the community held a VBS program for children. I’ve never understood why some denominations are more apt to go the route of VBS and others don’t.

It’s such a great tool for churches to minister to the children in the community and show parents the type of children’s program they have to offer.

I say all this to encourage parents all over, regardless of the denomination you are, to let your children take part in VBS this summer.

It’s a free thing that will only enrich the lives of your children. Not only will they have the chance to interact with other kids, some they probably know and some they don’t, but it will give parents an evening break with the kids out of the house.

It never failed when I was a kid that my parents would always have some type of house project going on when I was at VBS. Who knew how much you could get done in a week with a few hours of kid free time.

Let the kids bring with them a friend or two. And at the end of the week, when the program is over and they get to present to you all of the fun things they have made and learned, go and enjoy the free cookout and joy of watching your child learn and grow.

It’s something I know my mother would love to go back and enjoy, even if for just a few minutes.
12  General / Discussion / Re: A Slice of Life on: July 03, 2013, 06:57:00 PM
Breakfast Club state of mind

Laura Pitts | Posted: Tuesday, June 11, 2013 5:32 pm

As I helped my friend Kristen, a senior at Scottsboro High School this past year, get her cap and gown ready to go on graduation night, I was struck with this uneasy realization of just how much changes from the time you walk across the platform and receive your diploma.

Kristen talked on and on about how excited she was to finally graduate, while I made sure her cap was secure on her head. Sliding the bobby pins into her hair, I nonchalantly told her, “You know everything changes now, right?”

“Of course I do,” she told me, gathering her things and giving me quick instructions to hold on to her purse during the ceremony. “It’s just the end of high school.”

I pondered that statement for a few weeks, thinking back to my own high school experience and graduation.

Eight years ago, my close high school friend Clint stopped by my house on the way to our commencement ceremony. I only lived one house from the high school, and Clint and I knew we could enjoy the few hours before graduation together.

I remember us sitting on the porch, me in my black dress and Clint in his white button up shirt and tie, talking about the next step in our lives. We were both heading off to separate colleges and both carried a heavy feeling going into that summer. Of course we promised to keep in touch (which we have), but even then, at that moment, gathering our royal blue gowns and snapping a few quick pictures with family, we both knew that something was surely coming to a close.

It was a Breakfast Club ending moment that captured the very understanding of who were were and what we wanted to do. As mere 17 and 18 year-olds, graduation was something we couldn’t avoid. It had finally arrived, as we knew it would, and there was no getting out of it.

I remember riding with Clint to the football field and yearning to be placed inside Saturday Morning Detention - the kind that only John Hughes could write about. A Breakfast Club where all of my closest friends would be able to fall into the respective role of nerd, athlete and outcast, and have one final moment to talk with each other about the things we thought we knew and the things we were well aware that we didn’t know. Two weeks ago during Scottsboro’s graduation, that same longing came over me.

I wondered briefly how John Hughes would write the Breakfast Club in 2013. Sure we would have the prom queen, the nerd, the jock, the bully, and the outcast. But we would also have new roles to be filled, like the homosexual student, the overly religious student, the drama queen and the slacker. Really, it doesn’t matter the new roles that would develop, the plot would remain the same. Each student, stuck in Saturday Morning Detention, forced to write an essay about who they were with the unending desire to watch the clock tick down until they could leave. There would be the outbursts of yelling at each other, teenage angst at its finest hour, until in the end they each discovered something new about their classmates. A realization that they simply didn’t know anything they thought they knew.

What did I learn after high school that I wished someone would have matter-of-factly told me?

That some times life really is the best thing that you could ever have and that it can also be the worst. That things don’t always work out as planned. That school is hard and you have to study in order to get the grade you need and a lack of studying will give you the grade you deserve instead. I also wished someone would have told me how expensive everything was and explained to me how the process of buying both a house and a car go. Oh yeah, and that it’s almost impossible to fit a lawn mower in the back of a four door car. And yes, that I really didn’t know anything at all.
13  General / Discussion / Re: A Slice of Life on: July 03, 2013, 06:53:27 PM
A Lucky story on a serious note

Laura Pitts | Posted: Tuesday, June 4, 2013 5:30 pm

This story ends on a good note.

I say that in advance because I don't want you tuning out on this issue a few paragraphs into it. It's not something many people want to read, but for the few of us who are tired of the way people abuse and mistreat animals, it's a story worth telling.

Friday morning I was headed to work earlier than usual. A school board meeting at 8 a.m. had caused my morning to begin two hours earlier than it usually does. Upon coming over the bridge from Sand Mountain into Scottsboro, I saw the little fur ball running across a busy intersection. A solid black kitten, just big enough to put into my hand. The kitten came out of nowhere and my only assumption is that someone threw it out of the car.

Early morning traffic, fast and unrelenting on that bridge, I did the only thing I knew do to, the thing I've done so many times in my life. I pulled the car over, flicked on my flashers and ran against the flow of traffic toward the black kitten.

I'm sure people thought I was crazy. You probably would too if you saw a girl running on the side of the bridge calling, "Here kitty, kitty." Scared, she must have heard my cries and crouched down, waiting for help to arrive.

Like I said, the story ended good. The cat, minus a few scratches to her jaw, survived to live another day. She even ended up with a local animal rescue and if currently waiting for some wonderful, loving family to adopt her and give her a furever home.

However, while I was walking back to my car, kitten gripped in my hand and my heart still racing from the cars I dodged on the bridge, my distaste for some human beings purged back up.

I don't for the life of me understand how people can be so cruel to throw an animal out of a car. Now, I only assume that is what happened to this kitten, because how else would a kitten end up there? On a bridge suspended over water, no where near a residential area, or at least not close enough to one that the animal could have walked from.

I was even more upset that cars continued to pass by and no one, but me it seemed, thought to stop and help it. Some days I think there is still hope for this world and then moments like this happen and I start to wonder just what state the human condition is in.

A group of Scottsboro residents are hoping to see this city turn into a no kill animal community. The program has been presented to members of the city council. Other no kill shelter advocates have visited Scottsboro, including Kelly Jedlicki with the Shelby County Humane Society and No Kill Shelter in Kentucky, and Mike Fry, executive director of the Animal Ark of Minnesota, the largest no kill animal organization in Minnesota.

A no kill program would be a good benefit for this area. Sure there are costs associated with it, but in today's world, what good idea (or even a bad one) doesn't come with a price?

The road to becoming a No Kill Community won't be easy. It's going to take people swallowing their pride, thinking about others (including animals) before themselves, and taking a stand to join forces and work as a team. If other communities in this nation can run successful No Kill Operations, then Scottsboro can too.

While waiting on the animal rescue worker to pick the black kitten up Friday, I made sure to make the kitten feel as secure and as safe as possible. Such an innocent animal, a baby, that had no choice in it's venture into this world, only to be treated so cruel. It's heart breaking, really. This kitten is just one of many animals in our community that need a good, loving home to live in.

I've since learned that the cat has been named Lucky - a fitting name, I would say.
14  General / Discussion / Re: A Slice of Life on: July 03, 2013, 06:52:15 PM
For the graduates of 2012 and 2025

Laura Pitts | Posted: Tuesday, May 21, 2013 9:51 am

It seems like only yesterday that I stumbled into Amy Skipper's kindergarten class at Brownwood Elementary School to meet a group of young boys and girls just embarking on the journey that is school.

From August to May, the time has certainly flown by. And those sweet little kids, too shy at first to speak to me about the expectations they had for school, are now about to take the leap into first grade, where afternoon nap time is traded in for learning addition and subtraction, and how to read and write.

So to close out the 2012-13 academic year, the message I send out to the students is not merely for those graduating high school this year, but for those students who will turn their tassels in 2025.

I can't even imagine what the world will be like in just twelve years. I can't look beyond and say that the economy will be better, that gasoline costs will be lighter on the wallet, or that jobs in any field will be easy to obtain.

This year as kindergartners, a presidential election occurred, entirely new faces in Jackson County government emerged. A meteor exploded over the Russian city of Chelyabinsk and sparked many YouTube posts. The first Jesuit cardinal was chosen as Pope and to lead the Catholic Church.

The 2012-2013 school year was one of national mourning in which innocent lives were lost as students and teachers were killed in a school shooting in Sandy Hook, Conn. And lives were also lost after two bombs exploded at the Boston Marathon in Boston, Mass.

The Mars rover "Curiosity" successfully landed on the planet Mars. American astronaut Neil Armstrong died at the age of 82. Argo took home the grand prize of Best Film at the Academy Awards.

Of course all of these things are mere memories for you kids. Ya'll were much too busy enjoying the innocence of life, learning how to color in the lines, playing on the playground, even learning your shapes, colors and numbers.

For those of us on the latter end of it all, the time you spend in school truly are some of the best moments of your life.

Looking at your future now, I'm not sure what you, or even the class of 2012 will accomplish. But I do know this, setting goals and determine in your lifetime to make something great of yourself is the first of many stepping stones to get you on your way.

Class of 2025, you are full of potential - strong potential to carry you for the rest of your days. You are called to many great and wonderful things. Called to travel and to write. To take photos and to share words of encouragement. You maybe called to find a cure for cancer or help animals when they are sick.

You, above anything that life seems to tell you that you are, are called to do great things.

So go after it and do it. Let nothing hold you back, but remain rooted in the confidence you know to get you to that place.

It's hard to write for the future graduates without first acknowledging the current graduates.

Class of 2012, I'm sure you can't remember a thing about being in kindergarten, just as I'm sure you can't remember how hard it was for your parents to let you go that first day of school.

I can assure you, it's even harder for your parents to let you go now. And in a few months, when you make the move to college, it will be hard on you also to say goodbye.

Class of 2012, your kindergarten years were met during a time of America when the World Trade Center still stood tall over New York City. So much has changed since than and so much is still yet to come.

But regardless what this world throws at you, regardless the setbacks you may come across or the people that may make you feel at times inadequate to do the very thing you know you are called to do, just know this one thing:

You can.

Class of 2012 and class of 2025 go after your dreams, wherever the wind may lead you. Always remember where home is. Never forget your roots, or your family, or the teachers that poured into your life. Their words will come in handy on dark days.

And never, ever forget that you have purpose on your life.

Wonderful purpose to do great things in this life.
15  General / Discussion / Re: A Slice of Life on: July 03, 2013, 06:51:24 PM
We are all Gatsby chasing the impossible

Laura Pitts | Posted: Tuesday, May 14, 2013 10:40 am

I was introduced to F. Scott Fitzgerald's novel "The Great Gatsby," while nestled among the confines of a high school English classroom where the teacher allowed the words of great literature to drip off the page and ignite promise and persistence into the lives of those listening.

Gatsby's mystery was the first foray I took into reading and dissecting classic literature. Up until then, readings had been limited to the stories in our oversized English textbooks. Never once was I encouraged hold a book on my own, mark it up with red notes and a yellow highlighter and figure out what it was saying about culture and society.

Over the weekend I saw Baz Luhrmann's film adaptation of "The Great Gatsby" at the theater. While the movie did forever cause my view of Jay Gatsby to be that of Leonardo DiCaprio and rekindle a decadent love for the jazz music and the dress of the 1920s era, I couldn't help but think back to a question my high school English teacher posed to our class nearly eight years ago.

What is the American Dream and is it attainable?

As a junior trying not to think about the endless roads of college applications and test scores, the American Dream simply resonated in my spirit as this image of white picket fences lining a Beaver Cleaver neighborhood that smelled of apple pie where everything ran (albeit) too smooth. But as I've become older, my musings to this concept of the American Dream has changed, even vanished.

Fitzgerald's 1925 novel shares the story of characters living in the fictional towns of East Egg and West Egg on Long Island in New York.

The story's main concern is of the mysterious millionaire Jay Gatsby and his undying love and passion for the highfalutin yet flaky Daisy Buchanan.

If you haven't read the story, then you really should take time out of your day and set aside the cell phone and television and read it.

It's a story meddled with themes of decadence, idealism, resistance to change, the clash of social classes and excess. It's a picture of timeless literature showering readers with a glimpse of the Jazz Age, and taking them on a journey of what many critics have regarded as the American Dream

The American Dream is this idea of opportunity and prosperity mixed with a shift in social mobility and success backed by hard work.

As American writer and historian James Truslow Adams said in 1931, the American Dream is simply that, "life should be better and richer and fuller for everyone, with opportunity for each according to ability or achievement," never more bound to circumstances of social class. The forefathers of American Democracy touched on this idea in the Declaration of Independence, when they proclaimed that, "all men are created equal."

I'm not even sure that the American Dream really does exist anymore. As a matter of fact I might go so far as to say that all of us in this life, regardless of age, social status and ethnicity, are all chasing a formation of this concept much like Jay Gatsby, hidden behind the grandeur of the past we so longingly want to revel in.

Gatsby spends the majority of the novel trying to chase down this early American ideal for life, yet finds himself doomed in the end. No grand party or wealth can appease the socialities. Luhrmann's film shows this well at the end as Gatsby is resting in his coffin among the flowers and the narration reminds us that all of the people who enjoyed his lavish wealth and parties ceased to show their faces at his funeral.

Ah yes, this American Dream. In the early 1900s the dream showerd the expectancy to marry early, start a family and settle down in a good neighborhood, partnered with the hope of going from nothing (Like Gatsby) and climbing the social rung into something bigger and better But at what cost?

It's not that we can't go from nothing to something now, it's just that times are much different. The economy is still faltering, larger corporations maintain much power and poverty continues to rise.

In high school my classmates and I soaked up the idea of the America Dream during a time when $20 could fill the car with gasoline and a gallon of milk was well under $3.

The American Dream is a beautiful thing when you are seven years-old, even more so when you are sixteen, but such a harsh reality at 25.

I realize now we are all like Gatsby, chasing things appealing to our eye, but far out of our reach. The best we can do is be happy where we are and allow the American Dream to become us. Or find a new dream all together.
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