September 2022 Chronicle

Kicks & Giggles: Editor’s Note

By Debra Whitt

Happy summer, everyone! It sure has been a long, hot one and I bet we are all ready for it to be over! On a happier note, it is almost that time again for the Missouri Council of the Blind State Convention. I hope by now everyone has registered. This year we will finally be back in-person together!

The MCB Annual Convention will be held October 7th through 9th at the St. Louis Sheraton Westport Lakeside Chalet, 191 Westport Plaza. This year’s convention will be hosted by the Agape Council of the Blind. I am sure they have worked hard to make it a great success! I am also positive that a lot of kicks and giggles will be had by all attendees!

On another note, I am sure everyone in the MCB family was saddened to hear about Naomi’s resignation on July 1, 2022. I know that we wish her the best in her continuing pursuits. She has been a very valuable member and conscientious leader during her term as President. The Vice-President, Kay Malmquist, will be stepping in as President until the elections are held at the State Convention this October. Chip Hailey has agreed, and been confirmed by the Board, to serve as Vice-President until the elections.

Don’t forget the 50/50 raffle! Please see the Fundraising Committee report for details. Now be sure to check out the riddle below to exercise your noggin! If you get stuck, find the answer in the Chronical Comicals section. Have fun!

A Roman Riddle

A man wants to enter the temple but has forgotten the password, so he hides behind a pillar and listens carefully. Soon, another man walks up. The guard looks down at him and says in a gruff voice: “twelve.” The man replies “six” and is let in. Then a woman walks up and the guard says “six.” She replies “three” and is let in. The man thinks he’s heard enough and strides up to the door. The guard says “ten,” he says “five,” But the guard turns him away. What should he have said?

 

 

President’s Report

By Kay Malmquist, President

Hello everyone. At this writing, I have been your President for just under two weeks. I want you to know that I am very excited about working with and for all of you. This is going to be a fun and interesting time for this organization. As you know, Naomi officially resigned her position as President on July 25, 2022, and as Vice President, according to our bylaws the Vice President shall complete the President’s remaining term. The Board met, Thursday, July 28, 2022, and appointed Chip Hailey as your new Vice President. He has been very involved in MCB and will do an excellent job of representing our organization. I look forward to working with him over the next few months. 

The ACB Convention in Omaha, was a hybrid convention, enjoyed by many people in person and virtually.  Here's looking forward to next year.

The Missouri State Fair will be held in Sedalia from August 11 through August 21, 2022 and MCB will have a booth informing the public as to what MCB does.  This is a whole new experience and is both exciting and a bit daunting to us.  Thanks go out to Chip Hailey, and Linda Gerken for spearheading this project for us.  Thanks to the members of Blind of Central Missouri, Beverly Kaskadden, Terry Nord, Wilma Chestnut-House and the office staff, Virginia Drapkin and Nance Thier, for all your help. By working together, it came together. 

The MCB convention is rapidly approaching.  We have what we hope is a lineup of interesting and fun things for you to experience this year. So, make sure you register and find out what is happening. 

I am sure there is more that I should be talking with you all about, but you'll be hearing from me again, in upcoming issues of the Missouri Chronicle.  There are many ideas we have and projects that are needing to happen, so stay tuned to learn more.

If you want to contact Vice President Chip Hailey, or me, send us an email or call us.  Contact Chip at 417-540-9703 or chiphailey52@gmail.com. Or contact me at 608-436-2610 or kay.malmquist@gmail.com.

 

 

Affiliates Reporting

In-Person Convention is Back! What You Need to Know

By Wilma Chestnut-House, Agape Council of the Blind

Well, we are getting close to that big day!  This will be our last report before the convention.  We are working hard to make sure that everything will be an enjoyable convention after two years of not coming together.

If possible, bring your own sighted guide.  If you need clean towels or sheets, you must call the front desk and possibly go and pick them up.  If your trash needs to be taken out, contact the front desk. You can eat breakfast in the restaurant from 6:30 am -10:00 am and you can go to the bar and order food from 4:00 pm - 11:00 pm. There will be a list of open restaurants in the area in your convention packages including menus.  For your convenience, it has been suggested that you eat the MCB meals.

Don’t forget, we will be having our best western outfit contest during hospitality time along with the trivia contest.  The theme for both is All Things Western. There will be prizes.

Convention Details

Sheraton Westport Lakeside Chalet

191 Westport Plaza, St. Louis, MO 63146

Board Meeting Thursday, October 6 at 7:00 PM

General Assembly starts at 1:00 PM Friday, October 7

Be sure to make your reservation by September 1 to get the discounted rate of $103 plus tax. Call 314-878-1500 and be sure to reference Missouri Council of the Blind.

I am also still looking for some mentors for the First Timers group.  If you have not registered, there is a registration form on the website or you can ask for assistance from the office.

We also want to remind MCB affiliates to drop your door prizes off at the convention registration desk upon arrival.

Don’t forget, we will be having our best western outfit contest during hospitality time along with the trivia contest.  The theme for both is All Things Western. There will be prizes.

Exactly one week after the convention, we will be having a “White Cane Safety” day at the Missouri School for the Blind.  The address is 3815 Magnolia Ave. The date is October 15, 2022.  The time will be from 11:00 am-3:00 pm.  We hope that you can join us to help keep drivers aware of what canes and guide dogs are about and be mindful when blind and visually impaired pedestrians are crossing the streets.

We hope to see you in October twice.  Until then, happy trails to you!

Delta Area

By Wanda Matlock

Hello to everyone from Delta Area! As I am sitting here writing this report, I am thinking that in just a few short days we will be at Cobblestone Lodge. I think many of us may be ready for a nice relaxing time. Although the kids may have something totally different in mind. We have been busy as usual at Delta Area. The members of Delta Area voted to award the Lola B. Garner Scholarship to a young man who lives in Scott City, Missouri and attends Southeast Missouri State University (SEMO) in Cape Girardeau. He will graduate in December 2022, with a Major in Political Science and a Minor in Psychology. We are very blessed to continue to have funding so that we may award this scholarship each year. We are also looking forward to the MCB Convention in October. We have a total of six members registered to attend. It will be so good to visit in person with people that I haven’t seen in a couple of years.

This year is a milestone for Delta Area. Our affiliate will be celebrating our 40-year anniversary. Our celebration will be held on Saturday, October 22, 2022, at the Clinton Building from 1-3 pm in Sikeston, Missouri. We will have several guest speakers, fantastic entertainment, and of course, great food along with a beautiful cake. If you would like to join us, please let me know by October 1, 2022. From all the members of Delta Area to you, have a happy and healthy summer!

River City Workers of the Blind

By the Reporting Committee

Wow! I can't believe it is time for another Missouri Chronicle. Well, just grab a glass of iced tea or iced coffee and enjoy happenings around the State of Missouri.

River City Workers of the Blind has been very busy. Elaine Shirrell, our Secretary, had a total shoulder replacement and is doing well. Martin and Marlene (our Board Member) Limbaugh celebrated their 33rd wedding anniversary. Congrats to the two of them. And Debby and Linda Campbell attended a national youth gathering for their church in Texas.

Our Public Library, where we hold our monthly meetings, is celebrating its 100th anniversary in 2022. Congrats to our city for having a wonderful public library for our community. We are grateful to be a part of it.

In June, we had our annual picnic at Cape County Park South. The food was great, and the entertainment was extra special. River City Workers of the Blind members entertained all with various talents such as recitation of poems written by members, special singing, and inspirational readings. Thanks to all who worked on the picnic to make it a great experience. Marlene Limbaugh, Debby Campbell, and Elaine Shirrell Co-Chaired a fundraising event at Gordonville Grill to help with travel expenses for the convention.

It saddened our hearts to hear of the passing of a former member of River City Workers of the Blind, Norman Puckett. He was a member of the River City Workers of the Blind until he moved from our area. Rev. Jeff Lohrstorfer, Treasure of the River City Workers of the Blind, conducted the graveside ceremony. Stay cool and enjoy the rest of the summer. God's blessing be with everyone!

St. Charles County Council of the Blind

By Marjorie Petrofsky

Two of our monthly meetings were held in person at the Spencer Library in St. Peters and our July meeting was held virtually.

We did go on one outing; our installation dinner which was a picnic at Quaille Ridge Park. We had about twelve members who attended. The food consisted of sandwiches on rolls, side dishes, and as always plenty of desserts. We had a fantastic time! It was wonderful getting together and we realized how much we missed each other. Hopefully there will be more social functions in the future. I hope everybody is staying cool. Enjoy the rest of the summer!

Committees Reporting

Education and Advocacy Committee

By Patti Schonlau, Committee Chair

You are invited to our Education and Advocacy Committee meeting at the MCB State Convention on Friday morning, October 7, 2022, at 9:00 a.m. in Alpine 1 Room. We are proud to announce our guest speaker will be Nancy Price from League of Women Voters of Metro St. Louis. In preparation to attend the meeting, please read the article below.

Education and Advocacy—Building Relationships with your State and Local Legislators

Developing ongoing relationships with your state and local elected officials is an essential part of being an effective advocate because in policymaking, it’s not who you know, but who knows you. So, while you should be able to recognize your legislators and address them by name, to have an impact, they should be able to do the same. This is extremely difficult to do with your members of Congress, however, state, and local elected officials have fewer constituents and likely handle at least some of their own correspondence.

You can build your relationship with your legislators in several ways.

  • Every time you see a legislator, introduce yourself and tell him or her that you live in his or her district. Do this until they recognize you and greet you by name.
  • Find out more about your legislator’s background so that you can find common ground and build a relationship on shared interests.
  • Learn about your legislator’s history as a politician. Does he or she serve on a committee that will hear a bill you are supporting? Has he or she voted favorably on your issues in the past? Knowing these things will help shape your conversations about policy changes.
  • Follow the tips above to communicate with your legislators in person and in writing.
  • When your state legislature is recessed, schedule a meeting to discuss issues important to you. During a recess, legislators are usually less busy and more available to meet than when the legislature is in session.
  • Attend local political events and talk with local politicians and leaders in the different political parties. Get to know who people are.
  • If possible, volunteer for a campaign. Candidates need the help, and you can use the time to talk a bit about communication access issues.
  • Communicate often, even if it’s just a short email checking in on an issue you’ve discussed.

We look forward to seeing you on Friday, October 7, 2022, at 9 a.m. in Alpine 1 Room. Smiles. Smiles. Smiles!

Member-of-the-Month Committee

By Wanda Matlock

Hello to everyone from the Member-of-the-Month Committee. Do you know someone who has been an inspiration or who has done something special? These are the types of nomination letters that this committee would like to receive. We know there are many people in MCB that work very hard behind the scenes, and we would like to shine a light on these hard-working members. Please remember that only one person will be chosen each month, but we will hold on to additional letters for future consideration. We are looking forward to receiving many nomination letters.

The committee members for the Member-of-the-Month are Bob Jaco from United Workers of the Blind, Nancy Hodson from Queen City Council of the Blind, and Wanda Matlock from Delta Area of the Blind.

Member-of-the-Month Guidelines

Missouri Council of the Blind is initiating a Member-of-the-Month Program to recognize those who have given of themselves, and who have made a difference in their community or in assisting the blind. Each month the Member-of-the-Month Committee will select an individual from those nominated by any member of MCB. Now is the time to show appreciation for someone who has been an inspiration or has done something special. Qualifications for the award are:

Must be a member of MCB in good standing to nominate an individual.

Nominee must be a member of MCB in good standing.

A blind member may be nominated for service to the blind or for service to their community even if it does not affect the visually impaired.

A sighted member must make a positive contribution in assisting the blind.

Monthly nominations will be held over for later consideration. The MCB Member-of-the-Month Committee will select the recipients.

All nominations must include:

Name, address, phone number, email address, and affiliate name of the nominee.

A short paragraph telling what they have done and why you believe they are deserving of the award.

Name, address, phone number, email address, and affiliate name of the person making the nomination.

Nominations may be in the format of your choice.

The recipient of the award will receive a certificate and $25 gift card. Monthly award recipients will be recognized at the MCB Convention Banquet in October and of those recipients, we will honor a “Member-of-the-Year” with a cash award of $100.00. Send nominations by mail to Wanda Matlock, Committee Chair, #11 Five O Drive, Portageville, MO 63873-9115 or by email to wmatlock561@gmail.com.

Award Recipients

January’s winner was nominated by Agape Council of the Blind: We would like to nominate Karen L. Hawkins. Karen has been a member of AGAPE for at least 15 years, and she has never said no when asked to assist. She drives, cooks, has pushed wheelchairs, and has even had to clean up an accident or two. She not only helps the visually impaired, but she also took a leave of absence from her job as an emergency room nurse to move out of town for almost a year and take care of her ex-mother-in-law until she passed, even though her mother-in-law had children. This was all done with no pay! This is just one of the ways that she will go all the way for anyone, especially our affiliate. This nomination is long overdue.

Chip Hailey and Paul Mimms of Missouri Guide Dog Users (MGDU) and Adaptive Technologies (ATI) nominated February’s winner: Sarah Calhoun has given many hours in the past several years to the cause of guide dog users in the State of Missouri and beyond. She has been treasurer of Missouri Guide Dog Users, a special interest affiliate of MCB, since 2017, and continues to serve in that position. During that same period, she also served as secretary of ACB’s Guide Dog Users Inc., and currently serves as president of that organization. She was elected as treasurer of MCB's ATI special interest group at the last convention in 2021. She also helps on the MCB Membership Committee. From all positions in which she has served, Sarah has willingly and enthusiastically taken on the responsibility of disseminating information of value and interest to members of these organizations. Sarah has exemplified a sweet and kind spirit in the positions in which she has served. She has always demonstrated a bright and intelligent personality as she has gone about her work. In addition, she has always put the interest of others and the organizations in which she has served first without giving any thought to her own self-interests.

Patti Schonlau nominated our March winner, Darrel Vickers: As a Member-at-Large of Missouri Council of the Blind, Darrel brought outstanding professional skills that proved to be of great importance to the organization. Darrel served on the Missouri Council of the Blind Board as a Director from 2015 to 2017, Vice-President from 2018 to 2020, and served as Adaptive Technology Committee Chair from 2015 to Present. Darrel helped build our website when we lost Beau Barnhart. He also helped produce the case statement for Missouri Council of the Blind. Currently Darrel is a member of Delta Area Blind and serves as Vice-President. I appreciate Darrell for all the hard work he has done in the past and continues to do by extending his steadfast support of enhancing the mission of Missouri Council of the Blind.

Kim Reese, nominated our April award recipient: I would like to put forward Johanna Jeremiah‘s name. She is a wonderful person. She is such an asset to our affiliate. She is always willing to pitch in and do what she can. She is always right there to help someone with them asking or without them asking. She is always there for you with helpful words as well as helping you do something. She also has low vision and still puts herself out there to do what she can for everyone else. She is one of our most selfless members. We so appreciate her and all that she does for our affiliate. We are so thankful that she came to our group. We would all be lost without her. She goes above and beyond the call of duty and friendship. Johanna is a member of St. Charles County Council of the Blind.

Darrel Vickers nominated May’s winner of this award: I would like to place the name of Denny Huff from St. Charles County Council of the Blind for nomination as Member-of-the-Month. There are so many things I could say about Denny’s contributions to MCB, and it would take many pages. So, I am just going to hit a few of the highlights. Since I became a member in 2011 (because of Denny), he has served as President for eight of those years. He has also held many other offices and been on just about every committee we have.

Personally, he has been a great mentor to me. He has helped me, and many others discover ways we can contribute to MCB and the blind community. If you have been around MCB for any length of time you can’t help but be aware of the leadership, he has provided to this great organization. In closing I want to say a big thank you to Denny for all his hard work in serving the blind community for so many years and the work he will continue to perform.

Debra Whitt nominated June’s recipient, Daniel LaGoo, for the Member-of-the-Month recognition award: Daniel is currently President of the Queen City affiliate in Springfield, Missouri. Daniel joined the Queen City affiliate in 2014. Since that time, he has worked tirelessly to promote his affiliate and the mission of the Missouri Council of the Blind. Daniel has many achievements which demonstrate his leadership abilities and of which he can take pride. In 2017, he took on the arduous duties of becoming Queen City’s Secretary, and in 2019 he was elected Board Representative for his affiliate. He currently is doing dual service as Board Representative and President, being elected to this position in 2021. Among his achievements is his undertaking of creating a tandem bike partnership in 2016 for the benefit of blind riders. This is a project he hopes to pursue further once things get back to a more “normal” atmosphere. Additionally, he was instrumental in the planning and coordination of the 2019 White Cane walk sponsored by Queen City in Springfield. Daniel takes his responsibility as Queen City’s Board representative seriously, making sure he attends every state convention, so his affiliate is represented. He is always ready and willing to lend a helping hand in all his affiliate’s activities. Unfortunately, due to Covid and all the restrictions during this time, Daniel has not been able to show his full potential as Queen City’s newly elected President. However, Covid will not last forever. I believe we can expect great things from Queen City under Daniel’s direction in the upcoming year. I think we are all looking forward to what he has planned.

July’s winner was nominated by Kay Malmquist: I would like to nominate Patti Schonlau for Member-of-the-Month. She is a member of United Workers of the Blind, was President of the Missouri Council of the Blind, worked as Chair of the Sensitivity Committee, and is now Chair of the Education and Advocacy Committee. She also jumps in and helps in whatever capacity she is needed. She is one of those people that you can ask for help and she is willing to try. Thanks much for your consideration.

Adaptive Technology Grant Committee

By Darrel Vickers, Chair

I hope everyone is having a great summer. I want to take a minute to give you an update on our adaptive technology grant program and share some of the details about it.

At the Missouri Council, we understand how life-changing certain types of technology can be to a blind person. We are also aware the cost of this type of technology can be expensive and may be out of reach for some people. The Missouri Council of the Blind (MCB) created this Adaptive Technology Grants Program to help fulfill its mission of enriching the lives of legally blind Missourians. Each year MCB sets aside money for technology that blind persons of Missouri can apply for to help offset the cost of adaptive technology.

How it works: For MCB members, MCB will match dollar- for-dollar for most types of adaptive technology with a $3000 limit over any five-year period. Any blind resident of Missouri who is not a member of MCB can also receive a grant, but we will match 25% of the total cost with the same $3000 limit.

2021-2022 Funding: We began November with $40,000 for this fiscal year. We exhausted our $40,000 budget in early June. We approved 37 grants this year. Devices included digital screen magnifiers, OrCam My Eyes, smart phones, Braille displays, household items, and computer systems.

The following are two important sections of the guidelines in Section IV:

  • Grants shall be awarded to legally blind Missourians.
  • Each grant shall be matched dollar for dollar by the grant applicant.
  • Any purchase made prior to grant application shall not be eligible for a grant.
  • No person shall be eligible for more than a total of three thousand dollars of matching funds grants within a five-year period.
  • The minimum grant award shall be fifty dollars.
  • Members of the Missouri Council of the Blind shall receive the full benefits of the Adaptive Technology Program set forth by the Adaptive Technology Committee.
  • Those who are not members of the MCB shall receive 50% of the benefits offered by the Adaptive Technology Program.
  • The applicant must submit the following documents to the MCB office:
    • A completed application.
    • The exact specifications of the adaptive technology or computer to be purchased.
    • A copy of an official price quote from two vendors or dealers (one quote will suffice if there is no other source for the item).
    • Written verification of legal blindness from an ophthalmologist or other reasonable authority (obtained within the past year), including a description of the applicant’s eye condition.

Note: A complete copy of the guidelines will accompany the grant application. These can be found on our website at: http://moblind.org/programs or by contacting the MCB office at (314) 832-7172. You can also contact me anytime.

I am very proud of MCB for having this program. Not just because we can help with the cost of technology, but because we can really make a difference. This is especially important for those who are just beginning to travel the path of vision loss. This is a wonderful program and I encourage you to take advantage if you need to.

The Adaptive Technology Committee is made up of four members; Darrel Vickers (Chair), Kim Vaughn, Belinda Turner, and Nancy Lynn. Please contact me if you have any further questions at darrel@ww4b.org or 636-667-3176. See you at the convention!

Fundraising Committee

By Debra Whitt

Due to my two bouts with Covid since the beginning of the year, the last one which put me in hospital, the fundraising committee has not been able to do much. However, we have decided to do a 50/50 raffle before the year’s end. Please consider taking part. This time we are selling chances as described below. If you wish to purchase chances to win, just call the MCB office at 314-832-7172 or toll free at 1-800-342-5632 and give them your payment. Your name will be placed into a spreadsheet. (Example: If you purchase ten chances, your name and contact information will be entered consecutively on each line 10 through 20.) On Friday afternoon, Alexa will be asked to pick a number ranging from the spreadsheet entries. The person whose name is on the numbered entry will win the 50/50. The name will be announced Friday evening at the hospitality event. You do not need to be present to win. Costs of 50/50 raffle chances:

1 chance = $5 per ticket, 5 chances = $20, 15 chances = $50, 25 chances = $75 and 35 chances = $100

Remember, we are always looking for people wanting to serve on this committee. If anyone has a new idea for fundraising, please feel free to contact me. I am always looking for new ideas and opportunities. You can reach me at 502-262-2008 or travelingseekercr@gmail.com.

Public Relations Update

By Chip Hailey

Greetings and salutations to my fellow MCB blind brothers and sisters. I just wanted to bring you a brief update on what’s been going on lately with regard to what I’ve been doing as Public Relations Chair.

In late June, I attended the Greater Kansas City Deaf Blind Collaborative Event at the Whole Person in Kansas City. It was a great event, and we had many people stop by our MCB booth with questions to learn about MCB and the services and programs we provide. I also had the opportunity to speak very briefly to all the attendees as a group about MCB. Equally as important, I was able to go around to all the different booths and talk to many of the other vendors individually about MCB, which was pretty exciting.

I was able to visit again with Brenda Whitlock, Missouri Assistive Technology, Taylor Ofori and Sarah Collins, Vancro Integrated Interpreting Services, and Jake McLaughlin, AlphaPointe. In addition, I had a short visit with Scott Dollar and Amy Rowson, both deafblind leaders in the deafblind community. Finally, I had a warm welcome and visit with Sheila Styron with Whole Person. All in all, I thoroughly enjoyed getting to know so many of the other vendors and attendees and doing some great networking. My next stop will take place down in Bentonville, Arkansas, at the Missouri, Oklahoma, Kansas, and Arkansas (MOKA) Conference, where I hope to do even more networking and spreading the good news about MCB, if I may use that Biblical analogy.

We are now setting our sights toward the Missouri State Fair. In just a few short weeks, we will begin one of the biggest endeavors MCB has ever undertaken. In my 30-year plus history with this organization, I don’t ever recall MCB doing anything quite this big. But I strongly feel we have a great Public Relations Committee, and I can’t say enough about each one of them and the dedication and commitment they’ve shown towards this project.

Please allow me to acknowledge first, our former Madam President, Naomi Soule, for her full support and involvement with this committee, and for volunteering to participate in the project. I also want to send a big shout out to the rest of the committee for all their hard work and the planning they have put into the project:

  • Kay Malmquist, MCB Interim President.
  • Bev Kaskadden, Director.
  • Linda Gerken, Director.
  • Wilma Chestnut House, Agape Board Representative (also for her and her group representing MCB at this year’s “Run for Sight” event).
  • Bob Collier, guide, and driver.
  • Denny Huff, for his early participation in the planning.
  • Many of the members of Blind of Central Missouri who will be assisting at the booth, and the other drivers and guides for all their kind assistance as well.
  • The MCB office staff, Virginia Drapkin, and Nance Thier: for all the ordering and shipping of promotional items and contacting and working with the State Fair officials.
  • Last but certainly not least, I thank each one of our board members for their belief that this venture is something worth supporting. For that, I sincerely thank all of them from the bottom of my heart.

I have also been asked to participate on a disability access panel at this year’s State Clerk’s Conference to be held in Springfield, August 30 to September 2, 2022. The panel will be addressing the issues surrounding voting accessibility for persons with disabilities, but I also hope for the opportunity to say some really nice things about MCB.

I have been working with Taylor Ofori, DeafBlind Services Manager, and Vancro Integrated Interpreting Services in organizing an event that will be held at the MCB Office on September 25, 2022. This event is for individuals interested in receiving protractile training. The trainer will be John Lee Clark. John Lee Clark (born in 1978) is an American deafblind poet, writer, and activist from Minnesota. He is the author of Suddenly Slow (2008) and Where I Stand: On the Signing Community and My DeafBlind Experience (2014). He is also the editor of Anthologies Deaf American Poetry (2009) and Deaf Lit Extravaganza (2013).

I would like to take this opportunity to invite you to visit our MCB Facebook page and see all the nice things that are being posted by so many of our members. You might even decide you want to join the group and follow us on Facebook. Lastly, I hope you’re enjoying listening to our podcast, “Meet the People Of MCB,” co-hosted by Kay Malmquist and myself. We’ve received so many nice comments, and the interviews have been so much fun. If you know of someone you would like Kay and I to interview, please feel free to reach out to either of us. Call Kay at 608-436-2610 or Chip at 417-540-9703.

I am looking forward to seeing everyone again at this MCB State Convention in St. Louis. Thanks so much, MCB, for allowing me this wonderful opportunity to serve you as Public Relations Chair.

Library Users of Missouri

By Darrel Vickers

The goal of Library Users is to support the Wolfner Memorial Library for the Blind and Physically Handicapped. Also, we aim to promote literacy and the use of public libraries by persons who are blind or visually impaired in Missouri. Our members are comprised of people who love to read and are committed to literacy for all. We normally meet once a year in person at the MCB convention. We have other conference calls as needed.

We will be hosting the Library Users’ Breakfast at the convention in October. It will be held on Saturday morning at 8:00 am for the cost of $20.00. The menu consists of farm fresh scrambled eggs, applewood smoked bacon, breakfast potatoes, fresh seasonal fruit, and coffee, tea, and juice. Please come and join us and see what we are all about!

Program: The Many Faces of BARD

Beginning August 11, 2022, the Patron Engagement Section of the National Library Service (NLS) for the Blind and Print Disabled will offer a monthly program called The Many Faces of BARD (the Braille and Audio Reading Download). This program will occur on the second Thursday of every month at 7:00 p.m. Eastern Time. It will last for one hour and will cover one aspect of BARD usage. Each program will start with a brief presentation. The remainder of the time will be spent answering questions about the presentation or other questions related to BARD usage. NLS will announce the topic for the next presentation at the end of each program. The first presentation will provide an overview of all the available BARD products. These sessions are open to all patrons. They can be joined by calling 1-669-245-5252 or join online at https://loc.zoomgov.com/j/1611161911?pwd=bVh5ejFsWFBlL21KY0VqaHlRMUlSQT09

Zoom Information: To call into a session, participants must use the telephone numbers provided here for Zoom.gov rather than the regular Zoom telephone numbers. Upon connecting, participants will be placed in a virtual waiting room until the program begins. When they enter the room, they will be on mute, and they should remain muted unless the host calls upon them to speak. At that time, they may unmute by using Alt-A from a computer or star 6 if dialing in by phone.

All Many Faces of BARD programs will be recorded. If participants do not want to be on the recording, they should refrain from speaking. If you have any questions, requests, or concerns, please contact Wolfner Library by phone at 1-800-392-2614 or by email at wolfner@sos.mo.gov. You may also visit their web page at: https://www.sos.mo.gov/wolfner.

Want Something to Read?

Preacher's Inferno DB108275: Western.

"Legendary national bestselling Western authors William W. Johnstone and J. A. Johnstone return with an astounding twenty-eighth installment in the new long- running First Mountain Man series. A village is destroyed. A vengeance is born. And one man blazes a trail to hell and back to pay the devils their due—in bullets and blood. They call him Preacher. It starts as a happy reunion between Preacher and his fellow trappers in a peaceful Indian village. But it ends swiftly in death and destruction when a rival tribe attacks the village, slaughters some of Preacher's Crow and mountain man friends, and carries off the women and children as prisoners. Preacher was off hunting when it happened. Now he's teaming up with old friend Lorenzo and half-breed Tall Dog, to get the prisoners back—and get revenge. But the road to justice is paved with some very dark omens. And the trail leads to the baddest place on God's good earth: the bubbling quicksand pits, hot springs, and geysers of Wyoming.

City of Bones : A Novel DB54156: Mystery and Detective Stories.

The scattered bones of an abused, murdered child are discovered in the Hollywood Hills. Detective Harry Bosch takes the cold case and tracks the corpse to a missing boy from 1980. Bosch also begins an affair with a rookie cop as the case takes on strange twists. Commercial audiobook. Violence and strong language. 2002.

The Recovery Agent: a Gabriela Rose Novel DB107814: Suspense Fiction, Humor, Adventure, Mystery and Detective Stories, bestsellers.

Recovery agent Gabriela Rose is used to working for bamboozled billionaires. But her latest job is to help save her family. She's headed to the jungles of Peru in pursuit of the Ring of Solomon and the lost treasure of Lima. Her main problem is that the man with the map is her ex-husband, Rafer. Unrated. Commercial audiobook. Bestseller. 2022.

All the above books were taken straight from the National Library Service BARD website. If you cannot or do not want to access BARD, you may call Wolfner Library and ask them to send the books to you instead.

Politicians

I found this in an old email sent to me by someone. I thought it was appropriate given the current political climate. Then again, when is the political climate ever calm? I hope my readers enjoy this as much as I did.

Charley Reese was a journalist for 49 years with the Orlando Sentinel. This is the last column he published. He does a very good job telling it like it is and who, in the long run, must take responsibility for the decisions made which impact each one of us, as well as our descendants, in this country.

Politicians by Charlie Reese

Politicians are the only people in the world who create problems and then campaign against them.

Have you ever wondered, if both the Democrats and the Republicans are against deficits, WHY do we have deficits?

Have you ever wondered, if all the politicians are against inflation and high taxes, WHY do we have inflation and high taxes?

You and I don't propose a federal budget. The President does. You and I don't have the Constitutional authority to vote on appropriations. The House of Representatives does. You and I don't write the tax code, Congress does. You and I don't set fiscal policy, Congress does. You and I don't control monetary policy, the Federal Reserve Bank does.

One hundred senators, 435 congressmen, one President, and nine Supreme Court justices equate to 545 human beings out of 300 million who are directly, legally, morally, and individually responsible for the domestic problems that plague this country.

I excluded the members of the Federal Reserve Board because that problem was created by the Congress. In 1913, Congress delegated its Constitutional duty to provide a sound currency to a federally chartered, but private, central bank. I excluded all the special interests and lobbyists for a sound reason. They have no legal authority. They have no ability to coerce a senator, a congressman, or a President to do one cotton-picking thing. I don't care if they offer a politician one million dollars in cash. The politician has the power to accept or reject it. No matter what the lobbyist promises, it is the legislator's responsibility to determine how he votes. Those 545 human beings spend much of their energy convincing you that what they did is not their fault. They cooperate in this common con regardless of party. What separates a politician from a normal human being is an excessive amount of gall. No normal human being would have the gall of a Speaker, who stood up and criticized the President for creating deficits. The President can only propose a budget. He cannot force Congress to accept it.

The Constitution, which is the supreme law of the land, gives sole responsibility to the House of Representatives for originating and approving appropriations and taxes. Who is the speaker of the House? John Boehner. He is the leader of the majority party. He and fellow House members, not the President, can approve any budget they want. If the President vetoes it, they can pass it over his veto if they agree to. It seems inconceivable to me that a nation of 300 million cannot replace 545 people who stand convicted—by present facts—of incompetence and irresponsibility. I can't think of a single domestic problem that is not traceable directly to those 545 people. When you fully grasp the plain truth that 545 people exercise the power of the federal government, then it must follow that what exists is what they want to exist.

If the tax code is unfair, it's because they want it unfair. If the budget is in the red, it's because they want it in the red. If the Army & Marines are in Iraq and Afghanistan it's because they want them in Iraq and Afghanistan. If they do not receive social security but are on an elite retirement plan not available to the people, it's because they want it that way. There are no insoluble government problems.

Do not let these 545 people shift the blame to bureaucrats, whom they hire and whose jobs they can abolish; to lobbyists, whose gifts and advice they can reject; to regulators, to whom they give the power to regulate and from whom they can take this power. Above all, do not let them con you into the belief that there exist disembodied mystical forces like "the economy," "inflation," or "politics" that prevent them from doing what they take an oath to do.

Those 545 people, and they alone, are responsible. They, and they alone, have the power. They, and they alone, should be held accountable by the people who are their bosses. Provided the voters have the gumption to manage their own employees...We should vote all of them out of office and clean up their mess!

What you do with this article now that you have read it is up to you. This might be funny if it weren't so true. Be sure to read all the way to the end:

Tax his land, tax his bed, tax the table, at which he's fed.

Tax his tractor, tax his mule, teach him taxes are the rule.

Tax his work, tax his pay, he works for peanuts anyway!

Tax his cow, tax his goat, tax his pants, tax his coat. 

Tax his ties, tax his shirt, tax his work, tax his dirt. 

Tax his tobacco, tax his drink, tax him if he tries to think.

Tax his cigars, tax his beers, if he cries, tax his tears. 

Tax his car, tax his gas, find other ways to tax his ass.

Tax all he has, then let him know, that you won't be done, Till he has no dough.

When he screams and hollers; then tax him some more, tax him till, He's good and sore.

Then tax his coffin, tax his grave, tax the sod in which he's laid.

Put these words, upon his tomb, 'Taxes drove me, to my doom.

When he's gone, do not relax, it's time to apply, the Inheritance Tax.

Accounts Receivable Tax, Building Permit Tax, CDL License Tax, Cigarette Tax, Corporate Income Tax, Dog License Tax, Excise Taxes, Federal Income Tax, Federal Unemployment Tax (FUTA), Fishing License Tax, Food License Tax, Fuel Permit Tax, Gasoline Tax (currently 44.75 cents per gallon), Gross Receipts Tax, Hunting License Tax, Inheritance Tax, Inventory Tax, IRS Interest Charges IRS Penalties (tax on top of tax), Liquor Tax, Luxury Taxes, Marriage License Tax, Medicare Tax, Personal Property Tax, Property Tax, Real Estate Tax, Service Charge Tax, Social Security Tax, Road Usage Tax, Recreational Vehicle Tax, Sales Tax, School Tax, State Income Tax, State Unemployment Tax (SUTA), Telephone Federal Excise Tax, Telephone Federal Universal Service Fee Tax, Telephone Federal, State and Local Surcharge Taxes, Telephone Minimum Usage Surcharge Tax, Telephone Recurring and Nonrecurring Charges Tax, Telephone State and Local Tax, Telephone Usage Charge Tax, Utility Taxes, Vehicle License Registration Tax, Vehicle Sales Tax, Watercraft Registration Tax, Well Permit Tax, Workers Compensation Tax

STILL THINK THIS IS FUNNY?

Not one of these taxes existed 100 years ago, and our nation was the most prosperous in the world. We had absolutely no national debt, had the largest middle class in the world, and Mom stayed home to raise the kids.

What the heck happened? Can you spell 'politicians?'

Seen-Unseen: Art from another viewpoint

By Debra Whitt

Artist Clare McLaughlin is the founder and major coordinator for a unique international art appreciation club known as Seen-Unseen. This club is based out of the Republic of Ireland, which is Clare’s home. But since it’s conception in 2014, it has expanded from its “all Irish” participation to international participation. What makes this club so unique is that it is set up specifically for blind and low-vision individuals. Clare tries to find ways to help those with vision loss understand and appreciate the wonderful world of art, which they so often are denied. In a recent interview with her, Clare stated, “Most blind and visually impaired people don’t even bother to enter an art museum, knowing it will be inaccessible for them, and I wanted to change that.” Additionally, she tries to encourage her participants to explore their own artistic talents and create their own art form! WOW, how cool is that?

Clare is not visually impaired herself nor has she had any previous direct interaction with those experiencing vision loss. This happened quite by chance. In 2012, Clare decided to return to university to get a degree in visual arts. During her research in this field, she began to wonder what things would look like for those who could not see anything, especially “since as we all know, most museums and galleries are no-touch zones.” She further stated, “Every culture and country throughout time has been blessed with artists who tell the story of their culture through their artwork, and through this artwork people can better understand how people think and feel, both then and now. Art is an extension of a culture’s history, and everyone should be able to access it.” To understand a culture’s art is to better understand the culture and the lessons they intend us to learn.

Clare’s dream was to develop a system which would aid blind and visually impaired people in the opportunity to explore and develop a better understanding and appreciation of art. As one artist who Clare admires, Susie Gablick, wrote, “I don’t believe that just because you can’t see with your eyes, then you can’t see.” Gablick, who lost her sight, is the author of “The Re-Enchantment of Art.” 

Clare began contacting visually impaired people throughout Ireland with the help of various agencies and individuals she would meet. Her first experience with a visually impaired collaborator was with Ed Harper, an activist with the People Before Profit organization. Ed is blind and lives on Cape Clear, an island off the coast of Ireland, where he is involved in politics. He is also well-known for his goat husbandry skills. Ed graciously agreed to attend a local art exhibit with her and give his feedback from a blind point of view. Clare and Ed went to the Crawford Museum, located in Cork, Ireland. The museum’s staff was very interested and supportive of Clare’s project, allowing them to touch some of the artwork. Clare stated, “The average person visiting an art museum or art gallery normally spends an average of thirty seconds examining a piece of art before moving onto the next exhibit.” It makes you wonder just how much these individuals are really able to get out of a piece of artwork, spending so little time exploring it. After receiving feedback from a blind person, Clare felt this first experience was very informative and gave her some insight as to various ways to approach art from “the embodied experience rather than the visual.”

Clare has developed a close relationship with the Crawford Museum over the years, and she really appreciates the way they welcome the Seen-Unseen group each time they visit. Over the years, due to Clare’s influence, many other museums throughout Ireland have opened their doors to help the blind and visually impaired experience art while learning to appreciate it. Art is truly an educational experience that can enrich everyone’s life.

The name and logo for this art appreciation group, Seen-Unseen, came to Clare during the first meeting of this group. The logo is a picture of her and Ed in silhouette, grey on black, with the first Seen-Unseen attendees in the background. The picture is very hazy and undistinctive, giving the impression of not being truly seen. The depiction gives a good representation of how art can be so inaccessible for blind and visually impaired people. “The engagement among the individuals is what this is all about,” she says. She further stated, “Every individual has a different concept of what they feel and imagine, and I am more interested in the engagement than making it a totally physical experience for my participants.”        During her interactions with the various museums, Clare discovered they had no idea that blind and visually impaired people were even interested in touring a museum. She has helped to broaden their concept of a need that exists and should be addressed. She explains, “Unless disabled people are willing to enter a museum and request accommodations, the museums don’t know and can’t explore this opportunity.” She would like to see all museums one day be set up where any disabled person can just walk in off the street and be able to enjoy what they have to offer in the form of artwork.

The National Gallery of Ireland has attempted to utilize “thermoforming” for some of their pictures, but the materials are expensive, and funding is always a museum’s biggest nightmare. This is also true for Clare, who has funded this project out of her own pocket for many years. In her relentless search for project funding, as well as to bring attention concerning the lack of accessibility in museums and art galleries, Clare recently testified before (An Dail) Gaelic for the Irish National Parliament. “I wanted parliament to understand the challenges faced by these individuals and how the problem could be addressed.” While funding for this project was not forthcoming, she hopes her testimony and that of Carmen Miller, a visually impaired participant, has begun the process of “opening the eyes” of these government officials and will have future positive effects.

For now, however, Clare continues to do what she can to make art more a part of the lives of the visually impaired. She is more than willing to provide her input to other museums around the world if they wish to contact her. So, if you have a local museum in mind that might be open to exploring various avenues to be more accessible, pass on her information. She says she is learning as she goes, and with the input of the visually impaired community things are changing, albeit slowly.

If you would like to learn more about artist Clare McLaughlin or the Seen-Unseen project, you can visit her website at http://artistclaremclaughlin.org. You can also email Clare at claremclaughlinemail@gmail.com. Clare’s art appreciation for the visually impaired community takes place the last Friday of each month, 9:30 am EST, 8:30 CT.

I have been attending these events for two years, as she has been hosting them on Zoom for those of us not able to attend in person. She tries to send out a packet prior to the meeting. This can range from cut-outs resembling a picture she might be discussing, to a scrap of muslin to feel during the presentation so you get an idea of the texture of what is being exhibited. It is really a different way of approaching art, but she is open to ideas. “Everyone is an artist; they just need to encourage the inner artist to come out and play!”

The inner me

Jesse the Chicken-Plucker

As a boy, Jesse was a chicken-plucker. That's right. He stood on a line in a chicken factory and spent his days pulling the feathers off dead chickens so the rest of us wouldn't have to. It wasn't much of a job. But at the time, Jesse didn't think he was much of a person. His father was a brute of a man. His dad was actually thought to be mentally ill and treated Jesse rough all of his life. Jesse's older brother wasn't much better. He was always picking on Jesse and beating him up. Yes, Jesse grew up in a very rough home in West Virginia. Life was anything but easy. And he thought life didn't hold much hope for him. That's why he was standing in this chicken line, doing a job that darn few people wanted. In addition to all the rough treatment at home, it seems that Jesse was always sick. Sometimes it was real physical illness, but way too often it was all in his head. He was a small child, skinny and meek. That sure didn't help the situation any. When he started school, he was the object of every bully on the playground. He was a hypochondriac of the first order.

For Jesse, tomorrow was not always something he looked forward to. But he had dreams. He wanted to be a ventriloquist. He found books on ventriloquism. He practiced with sock puppets and saved his hard-earned dollars until he could get a real ventriloquist dummy. When he got old enough, he joined the military. And even though many of his hypochondriac symptoms persisted, the military did recognize his talents and put him in the entertainment corp. That was when his world changed. He gained confidence. He found that he had a talent for making people laugh and laugh so hard they often had tears in their eyes. Yes, little Jesse had found himself.

You know, folks, history books are full of people
who overcame a handicap to go on and make a success
of themselves, but Jesse is one of the few I know of who didn't overcome it. Instead, he used his paranoia to make a million dollars, and become one of the best-loved characters of all time in doing it! Yes, that little paranoid hypochondriac, who transferred his nervousness into a successful career, still holds the record for the most Emmy's given in a single category. The wonderful, gifted, talented, and nervous comedian who brought us Barney Fife (The Andy Griffith Show) was Jesse Don Knotts.

NOW YOU KNOW "THE REST OF THE STORY”

Jesse Donald 'Don' Knotts was born July 21, 1924, and died on February 24, 2006. There is a street named for him and his statue in Morgantown, West Virginia, his place of birth.

It just goes to show how a person can make something out of seemingly nothing, regardless of the attitudes of others.

Kitchen Hints and Secrets

The Incredible Edible Egg

Many of my readers most likely remember this great marketing slogan. Eggs have a variety of uses as well as being very nutritional. They are great for a morning fuel-up, a late lunch, or a quick snack. Having eggs for dinner is a quick, easy, and even nutritious way to end your day. However, how much do most of us really know about this wonderful food source? And what about storing them properly? Here are some interesting facts and information about eggs that might be of use to you. Get ready to delve a bit deeper into these wonderful ovals, and to discover exactly why eggs are so incredible!

One large egg is jam-packed with minerals, vitamins, fatty acids, and proteins which aid your body in its daily functions. One large egg has 0 sugars, 190 milligrams cholesterol, 6 grams of protein, 5 grams of fat, and only 71 calories. They are an excellent source of Omega 3, which your body does not produce on its own but needs for optimal performance. The Omega 3 found in eggs is an important component of the membranes that surround each cell in your body. They aid in the proper functioning of your heart, blood vessels, lungs, eyes, and your nervous and immune systems. They have been shown to improve your heart health and brain function, among many other benefits. So, invite an egg to dinner!

Of course, as with everything, the fresher the better, since the fresher the egg the better it will taste. Flavor is best within the first week. According to the FDA, whole eggs in the shell should be refrigerated (40°F or below) and consumed within four to five weeks beyond the “pack date,” also known as the Julian date. If you look at the date stamp on your carton of eggs, you'll notice a recognizable date ("SELL BY MAY 11," for example). You'll also notice two sets of additional numbers. They may seem a little random, but they're actually indicating 1) the packing date for the eggs and 2) the plant in which they were packaged—an important indicator in the event of a recall.       As for the packing date, it's very easy to understand once you know what's what. This set of numbers runs 1 through 365, which is (not coincidentally) the number of days in the year. So, if the number on the carton is 032, for example, you know that because there are 31 days in January, the eggs were packed on February 1, which is the 32nd day of the year. Eggs are generally packed very soon after they're laid, avoiding confusion about when the eggs should be consumed. When purchasing eggs, you should be looking for the date closest to the date you are purchasing them. Or you can go with the other standard recommendation for considering freshness: three to four weeks from the sale by date. Eggs further out in date would be better used for baking instead of the normal breakfast fare. Additionally, by cooking or baking the egg thoroughly, you’ll cook away any possible bad bacteria that might exist in older eggs. Ideally, choose organic or free-range eggs from hens raised in a happy environment. This supposedly results in a brighter, creamier yolk and an all-around better egg flavor. Unfortunately, I have not been able to find a hen willing to confirm this.

Like butter, eggs are one of those foods that make us question how necessary it is to keep them cold. Do eggs need to be refrigerated? After all, many recipes call for room-temperature eggs since they will produce a better texture in baking. Additionally, if you go to a farm stand, those cartons of freshly laid eggs aren’t always in a cooler. When I lived in Ireland, eggs were left on the countertop far away from any heat source, like a window. This is common practice in several countries like the United Kingdom. This is due to the normally cooler climate and the way eggs are processed in these countries. It all comes down to the cuticle, a thin coating on eggs after they are laid. However, in the United States, room-temperature eggs “lose more quality in one day than a week in the refrigerator.” Better to follow the old adage, “better safe than sorry.”

When food is left out for longer than two hours in a climate of over 40 degrees, they have the potential to enter what we call the “danger zone.” This means your chance of developing a food borne illness like salmonella, The most common strain of bacteria associated with eggs, is increased. This illness can have long-term health issues, such as kidney failure or even death; the CDC estimates that 100,000 infections and 40 deaths are attributed each year to this food borne issue. I know it doesn’t sound like a lot, unless you are one of the 40, that is. Additionally, the CDC advises people to wash their hands thoroughly after handling eggshells, as well as cleaning any surfaces coming into contact with the eggs. Also, if you have concerns, be sure to cook your eggs until the yolk and whites are firm. This will reduce the health risks.

If you prefer your yolks on the runny side, or plan to consume food or drinks that contain raw eggs, such as homemade ice cream or certain whiskey sours, err on the side of caution and buy pasteurized eggs. Pasteurization raises the temperature of an egg enough to kill bacteria without cooking the egg. Liquid eggs and egg whites are usually pasteurized.

One more item of interest concerns the storage of your eggs: you should store eggs inside the refrigerator, not on the door shelf. In some older refrigerators you might find a cute little egg shelf which holds a carton of eggs, or maybe a space which would hold an egg carton perfectly, but don’t use these options. The door is warmer than the rest of the refrigerator, thus creating an environment which will quickly reduce the quality of the eggs. Plus, it will constantly be exposed to warm air when you open the door every 20 minutes to look for a snack. Additionally, since the constant opening and closing of the door can cause the egg to move around slightly, the more an egg moves, the thinner its white will get. Also, since eggs have pores, they are super susceptible to absorbing odors from other foods, affecting their taste. This is another reason why you should either keep your eggs in the container they came in or transfer them to an airtight container. Regardless of your container choice, you should keep your eggs on the bottom shelf toward the back of the fridge, which is the coldest section.    Even with all these precautions to keep your eggs at their optimal best, you might want to know how you can tell the degree of freshness an egg has before deciding to use it for breakfast or in baked goods. There are a few ways to make sure your eggs are fresh. After you crack open an egg, there are several signs of freshness: Thick whites that don’t significantly spread; A mild smell (an old egg will smell like damp grass or straw); A tall, dome-shaped yolk.

There is always the “float” test if you don’t want to crack open the egg. This method has been around for hundreds of years! Simply fill a bowl with water and carefully place an egg on top. If the egg sinks like a rock, laying down on its side, it's still very fresh. If it sinks but doesn't lay flat, and sort of stands up wobbling, then your egg is also okay and is just right for turning into a hard-boiled egg. If the egg floats on the top, however, that's an indication that it’s possibly past its prime. Floating doesn't necessarily mean it's gone bad; just that it's no spring chicken! But better safe than sorry! When in doubt, throw it out.

The reasoning for this is simple. The egg loses moisture through its porous shell, so the contents of the egg shrink over time and the air cell at the wide end of the egg expands. As an egg ages and its air cell expands, it gets progressively less dense. This means if an egg can float in water, it’s old as heck and you might not want to utilize it in your diet. However, if your eggs are beyond the "best by" date but they've passed the water test, one sure way to know if it’s safe to eat is to perform the “smell” test. Crack one open into a bowl and sniff it. If it smells bad, it's fit for the garbage. But there are a few more subtle things to look for. A fresh egg will have bright orange yolk and the whites will still have some spring to them. If the yolk is dull and yellowish, and the whites run out lifelessly onto the plate, the egg is old. But again, an older egg isn't necessarily a bad egg. So, give it a sniff; your nose will know. An egg should have a neutral smell. If there's no funky odor, then it's probably okay. If you pick up a sour or a mildew odor on the nose, then toss it.

Now, what about all those dishes we prepare that call for boiled eggs? They go well with salads, especially during the hot summer weather. I really enjoy a good egg salad sandwich or tuna salad plate. However, trying to cook the perfect boiled eggs can be tricky. Boil them too much and they are rubbery; too little and they will be mushy. Even after they are cooked, trying to peel them can be problematic.

Hard-boiling a bunch of eggs and storing them in the fridge is a great way to get ahead on meal prep. But like raw eggs, they won’t stay good forever. After hard-boiling, eggs will keep in the fridge for up to one week. Store in an airtight container so they don’t absorb the odors from other foods. This also holds true for soft-boiled or medium-boiled eggs. These eggs are more delicate and more susceptible to foodborne bacteria growth.

To properly boil the perfect egg, according to several authorities on the subject, bring a pot of water to a rolling boil. Add one of the following to the water (it doesn’t matter if it is at the beginning of boiling or right before you add the eggs): a teaspoon of salt, lemon juice, baking soda, or vinegar. This addition will help with the peeling process. Then using a slotted spoon, slowly lower each egg into the boiling water. Boil for 10-12 minutes for hard-boiled, around 5 minutes for soft-boiled, and anywhere in between.

Once the eggs are fully cooked, the next step is to cool the eggs down in an ice bath or a bowl of very chilly water, where they should stay for a full five minutes or so. Do not disturb them while they are chilling out. Once they are cool enough to handle, drain the water, refill with room temperature water, and begin the shelling process. Start by gently tapping the large round end of the egg against a hard surface to break the shell. It is easier to begin removing the shell from this end since there is a small air pocket at this end. Once cracked, the water helps to gently separate both the membrane—which attaches itself with a vice-like grip to the egg—and the shell from the egg white, making it much easier to peel. Or just gently crack the shell and peel under cool running water.

If you don’t plan to use them right away, keeping the eggs in their shells will protect them from drying out, as the shell acts as a moisture barrier. Keep the eggs in a tightly covered container or empty egg carton, tucking a lightly dampened cloth in with the eggs. This helps to keep the inside of the boiled egg from drying out and becoming rubbery. Make sure to label them with the date they were boiled. This will also aid you in knowing which eggs are boiled and which are not, if you use similar containers for both your fresh and cooked eggs. If you prefer to peel the eggs and then store them for future use, they are best stored submerged in cold water in an airtight container. Just be sure to refresh that water daily.

Following these suggestions should make eating that egg salad even better, since you now know your eggs from yolk to shell! Now, here are a few egg recipes sure to please!

Cheesy Baked Eggs

1 tablespoon butter, melted

12 eggs, beaten

1-pound shredded pepper jack cheese

16 oz. cottage cheese

½ cup all-purpose flour

1 pinch salt (if desired)

Preheat oven to 375 degrees. Melt butter in a 9x13 sheet pan. Whisk together eggs, flour, salt, and both cheeses until well combined. Pour into sheet pan. Bake for 1 hour or until knife inserted in the middle comes out clean.

Note: Feel free to play with this recipe. Change out the cheeses, add a small drained can chopped green chilies or jalapenos, serve with sour cream or salsa, etc. Leftovers are good placed into the center of a tortilla, wrapped and zapped for a few seconds in the microwave for a quick breakfast or snack. You can also divide this into muffin cups and make individual small servings. Add a variety of lightly sauteed vegetables for even more fun! Of course, if you decide to halve this recipe, make sure you cut back on the time.

Cheesy Veggie and Bacon Frittata

8 slices bacon, cooked and drained, broken into bite-size pieces (can also substitute turkey bacon)

1 Tbs unsalted butter, melted

1 cup frozen cauliflower

1 medium red pepper, chopped

2 green onions, finely chopped

1 cup liquid egg whites

¼ cup water

½ tsp. oregano

¼ tsp. ground pepper

¼ tsp. garlic powder

8 oz. shredded mozzarella cheese

1 6oz. can mushrooms, stems and pieces

½ cup grated parmesan cheese

1 medium tomato, chopped

Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Grease an 8x8 inch metal pan. Melt butter in a skillet and add the cauliflower, red pepper, and green onions. Cook until tender, about 5-7 minutes. Remove from heat and set aside. Beat egg whites, water, oregano, pepper, and garlic powder in a large bowl until foamy. Stir in cooked bacon, mozzarella cheese, mushrooms, parmesan cheese, tomato, and cooked cauliflower mixture. Pour it into the prepared baking dish. Bake for 40 minutes or until done. (Note: frozen broccoli also works well in this recipe.)

Air-Fryer Frittata

¼ pound sausage, fully cooked and broken into pieces

4 eggs, lightly beaten

½ cup shredded cheddar-Monterey Jack cheese blend

2 Tbs red pepper, diced

1 green onion, finely chopped

Pinch cayenne pepper (optional)

Cooking spray

Preheat air-fryer to 360 degrees. Spray a pan that is small enough for your fryer with cooking spray. Mix all ingredients and pour into pan. Cook until set, about 18-20 minutes.

(Note: I do not use the meat and it is still very good. I enjoy adding some spinach and Beyond Meat sausage.)

Playing with recipes can be fun and adventurous. Usually, when using cheese and eggs, you can’t go wrong. They like to bind together. Now go and enjoy some incredible, edible eggs!

Lemons

Since produce is getting rather expensive, and I know many of us love a good lemon treat or just lemon in our water, I thought I would share some facts about lemons.

  • One lemon has 17 calories, 1 gram protein, 1 gram sugar, and 2 grams of dietary fiber.
  • The best way to store your lemons is in the refrigerator. If you leave them on the counter they will start to dry out. On the counter they will last about a week, and in the fridge, they can last up to a month. Some of mine have lasted longer than a month. When keeping lemons in the fridge, it is best to put them into a sealed air-tight container. This will help them stay juicier and keep their moisture for longer. If you happen to have unripe lemons, you should leave them on the counter until they ripen. Not only does keeping lemons in the fridge make them last longer, but it also maintains the soft texture of the rind and keeps their flavor intact.
  • When lemons are fresher, they are sweeter and less acidic than when they start to dry out, which happens quicker at room temperature.
  • You should always zest the rind before throwing out the lemon. Lemon zest is so versatile in cooking and baking, so even if you don't need it right away, pop it in a sealed container in the freezer and thaw when you're ready to use it in one of your recipes.
  • If you only use half a lemon, cover the exposed end with plastic wrap or place it in a sealed container, making sure to use it within a few days before it dries out.
  • You can preserve leftover lemon juice by keeping it in a sealed container in the refrigerator where it will maintain its flavor for a couple of days. This makes the best fresh lemonade. However, after a few days it is best to use the lemon juice for cooking or freeze the rest by pouring it into ice cube trays and storing in a container when frozen. This way you always have fresh-squeezed lemon juice. The frozen cubes are great in a glass of water for a hot summer-day pick-me-up.
  • Lemons have a lot of health and nutritional benefits such as better health for your heart, liver, and kidneys, as well as the added benefit of assisting in weight loss goals. A glass of water with a squeezed lemon in it an hour before meals should aid in digestion and reduce cravings, as well as help you feel fuller from your meal and less likely to hit the fridge for a snack afterward. Additionally, lemons help to boost your immune system. They are also believed to reduce hair loss and graying, as well as those fine lines and wrinkles we try so desperately to avoid as we age.

While I am all about a healthier me, I do like a little treat from time to time. I recently discovered how to make ice cream without an ice cream maker. It has been fun experimenting. When you do it yourself you know exactly what is going into your work of art. Now that you have become friendlier toward lemons, enjoy this no-churn ice cream recipe for your next treat!

Lemon No-Churn Ice Cream

1 tablespoon finely grated lemon zest

¼ cup freshly squeezed lemon juice (from about 2 lemons)

1 cup sugar

1/8 teaspoon fine sea salt

1 cup heavy cream

1 cup whole milk

Whisk together the lemon zest and juice, sugar, and salt in a large bowl. Whisk together the cream and milk in a large measuring cup and gradually pour into the lemon and sugar mixture, whisking constantly. Continue to whisk until the sugar dissolves—you won’t hear or feel it scraping against the bottom of the bowl anymore, about 2 minutes. Pour the mixture into an 8-inch square metal baking pan. Cover tightly with aluminum foil and freeze until the mixture is solid around the edges and mushy in the middle, 2 to 3 hours. Stir well, cover again with foil, and continue to freeze until completely firm, about an hour more. Once firm, scoop into chilled bowls to serve. Top with whipping cream if desired. This goes well with gingersnap cookies!

Vets news line

By Darrel Vickers

I want to take a moment to talk about benefits for veterans who have lost or are losing their sight. If this is you, or if you know a veteran, this information could help. Please share it with them.

As some of you may know, I am a Navy vet. I began losing my sight while I was in the service. Over a twenty-year period, I lost my sight except for a little light perception. But my eye condition is not service connected, so I thought I was unable to receive medical VA benefits.

Then a friend, Denny Huff, put me in contact with another vet, Morris, like myself. After talking with him, I realized the VA wanted to help me even though my condition was not service connected. At the time, I really did not think the VA could do anything for me. But Morris encouraged me to just contact the VA anyway. So, I got the name of what the VA calls a vision coordinator and got the process started.

After I had a full physical, eye examination, and a chest X-ray, I was placed on the schedule to go to the Heine's Blind Rehabilitation Center in Chicago. This was one of the best decisions I have made. Heine's is a first-rate facility, and every member of the staff is great.

Each program is customized to the vet's needs and desires. In my case the number one thing I wanted was orientation and mobility training. I had a cane but never had any formal training. I was there for six weeks. I always thought I could get around pretty well. I soon realized, after a short time, that I was wrong. I met a couple of guys who had recently lost all their sight. Although I had been using a cane for at least fifteen years, they were helping me get around, and they had only been using a cane for a few weeks! By the time I left, I was helping other people.

They will purchase equipment such as a computer and other adaptive devices. Another thing is all your health care costs are paid with no co-payments. Please do not let fear prevent you from taking advantage of this wonderful facility. They have a very comprehensive rehabilitation program that includes O and M, computers, living skills, and so on. They have a full woodworking shop, machine shop, music classes, and more.

It is not just all work and no play. I attended a Cubs game, went sailing, played golf, and did many other things. I also made some new friends, and even after ten years a couple of guys and I are still very close. I have been there two more times since 2011 for some new equipment and a couple of weeks’ refreshers. I could go on and on, but I need to keep this article short!

VA facilities with a Vision Coordinator in Missouri

Kansas City

Kansas City VA Medical Center

Paul Clary-Archuleta, 816-861-4700, Extension 56924

St. Louis

John Cochran Division

Jennifer Bach (Acting)

314-652-4100 or toll free 800-228-5459, extension 54121

Columbia

Harry S. Truman Memorial Veterans' Hospital

Lauren Swift, 573-814-6000

Poplar Bluff

John J. Pershing VA Medical Center

Erin Shaw, 573-686-4151 or toll free 888-557-8262

Remember that your loss of sight does not have to be service connected. You served your country.

Another organization you may want to consider joining is the Blinded Veterans Association. See their website at http://bva.org/.

Please contact me if I can answer any questions. You can reach me at 636-667-3176 or darrel@ww4b.org. Take Care.

Darrel Vickers, USN AMM Third Class PO

Vendors on the Spot at The Spot

By Wilma Chestnut-House

This is an event that I am hosting.  If anyone has a product or business that you would like to promote, come and join us at 8816 St. Charles Rock Rd, St. John, MO  63114, Saturday, September 24, 2022. Vendor setup is 10 am -12 pm. Open to the public 12 pm - 4 pm. Anything your heart desires, from food, jewelry, clothing, books, music, and more!  Live streaming by Brandee Swann.  If you are interested in showcasing your product or business, come and join us at The Spot.  Reserve your place now!  Limited space is available.  The cost is $30. You can use one of the round tables available or feel free to bring your own. Reserve your spot by contacting Wilma at wilmachouse@gmail.com or 314-873-9022. 

The Chronicle comicals

Baby Bliss

A little boy said he wanted a baby brother. His Dad smiled and suggested he pray for one. The boy prayed earnestly, night after night, but after a couple weeks with no baby brother, he didn't bother to ask anymore. Many months later Dad said Mom was in the hospital and had a surprise. When they got to the room, the little boy saw Mom holding two babies!

"Well, what do you think about having twin brothers?"

Dad asked.

The little boy, in awe, said, "I'm glad I stopped praying when I did!"

How Much is an Elephant?

John: I wish I had the money to buy an elephant.

Adam: What do you want with an elephant?

John: Nothing, I just want the money.

The Sunday Fisherman

A man who hadn't attended church in years suddenly began attending regularly on Sunday mornings instead of going fishing as was his normal habit. The pastor was highly gratified, and at the end of service one morning told him, "How wonderful it makes me feel to see you at services with your good wife!" "Well, Preacher," said the fisherman, "quite honestly, it's a matter of choice. I'd much rather hear your sermon than hers."

Barking Up the Wrong Tree

A mother asked her small son what he would like for his birthday. "I'd like a little brother," the boy said. "Oh my, that's such a big wish," said the mother. "Why do you want a little brother?" "Well," said the boy, "there's only so much I can blame on the dog."

Authentic Love

A guy bought his wife a beautiful diamond ring for her birthday. A friend of his said, "I thought she wanted one of those jazzy four-wheel drive vehicles." "She did," he replied. "But where in the world would I find a fake Jeep?!"

Down by the Cemetery

On the outskirts of town by a cemetery fence, there was a big old pecan tree. One day two boys filled up a bucketful of nuts and sat down by the tree, out of sight. They began dividing the nuts. "One for you, one for me. One for you, one for me," said one boy. Several were dropped and rolled down toward the fence.  Another boy came riding along the road on his bicycle. As he passed, he thought he heard voices from inside the cemetery. He slowed down to investigate. Sure enough, he heard, "One for you, one for me. One for you, one for me." He just knew what it was. "Oh my," he shuddered, "it's Satan and St. Peter dividing the souls at the cemetery. He jumped back on his bike and rode off.

Just around the bend he met an old man with a cane, hobbling along. "Come here quick," said the boy, "you won't believe what I heard. Satan and St. Peter are down at the cemetery dividing up the souls." The man said, "Beat it, kid, can't you see it's hard for me to walk?" When the boy insisted, though, the man hobbled to the cemetery. Standing by the fence they heard, "One for you, one for me. One for you, one for me." The old man whispered, "Boy, you've been tellin' the truth. Let's see if we can see the devil himself." Shaking with fear, they peered through the fence, yet were still unable to see anything. The old man and the boy gripped the wrought iron bars of the fence tighter and tighter as they tried to get a glimpse of Satan. At last, they heard, "One for you, one for me. And one last one for you. That's all. Now, let's go get those nuts by the fence, and we'll be done."

Not a Chance

A man, his wife, and his cranky mother-in-law went on vacation to the Holy Land. While they were there, the mother-in-law passed away. The undertaker told them, "You can have her shipped home for $5,000, or you can bury her here in the Holy Land for $150."

The man thought about it for a while and told the undertaker he would just have her shipped home.

The undertaker asked, "Why would you spend $5,000 to ship your mother-in-law home when it would be wonderful to be buried here and spend only $150?"

The man replied, "A man died here about 2000 years ago. He was buried here and three days later, he rose from the dead. I just can't take that chance."

Food for Thought

Remember: Always give 100%. Unless you're giving blood.

Riddle Answer

Here is the riddle one more time, in case you forgot it:

A Roman Riddle

A man wants to enter the temple but has forgotten the password, so he hides behind a pillar and listens carefully. Soon, another man walks up. The guard looks down at him and says in a gruff voice: “twelve.” The man replies “six” and is let in. Then a woman walks up and the guard says “six.” She replies “three” and is let in. The man thinks he’s heard enough and strides up to the door. The guard says “ten,” he says “five,” But the guard turns him away. What should he have said?

The answer is “three.” The password is the number of letters in whatever number the guard says.

September bits and bobs

NLS BARD Mobile

As part of its effort to provide services, programs, and resources directly to patrons that will enhance their library experience, NLS’s newly formed Patron Engagement Section will be hosting a virtual Monthly BARD Review on Zoom. This program will occur the second Thursday of each month at 7 p.m. Eastern time, starting on August 11, 2002. Each review will last for one hour and will discuss a predetermined topic about a component of BARD usage or a specific BARD product. To join the August 11 session, go to: https://loc.zoomgov.com/j/1611161911?pwd=bVh5ejFsWFBlL21KY0VqaHlRMUlSQT09. You may also call 1-669-254-5252 (meeting ID 161 116 1911). For more information on upcoming programs, visit www.loc.gov/nls/about/services.

Covid Testing

On June 22, 2022, the federal government announced a new initiative to expand the availability of Covid-19 testing options for those who are blind or have low vision and use a smart phone. Consumers who are blind or have low vision can order the COVID-19 home test free of charge by calling 1-800-232-0233 or order them online at https://special.usps.com/testkits/accessible. Each order will include 12 rapid antigen tests and will ship free, while supplies last. More information regarding testing is available at covid.gov/tests. You can also order the 12 free accessible COVID-19 tests from home tests, by visiting https://acb.org/12-covid-test-2022.

Disabled Placards

On July 14, 2022, the Missouri Department of Revenue announced that it will automatically renew and mail Permanent Disabled Placards for eligible individuals. To be eligible, a person must already have a Permanent Disabled Placard on file with the Department and their placard must be up for renewal in 2022. All first-time recipients of a placard must still apply in-person at a Missouri license office. To read the full news release with additional information, please visit Missouri Department of Revenue at mo.gov.

Support Service Provider Program

There is a new program in Missouri for those who experience both sight loss and hearing loss known as SSP. This stands for Support Service Provider. SSP’s assist individuals by working as their eyes and ears. This enables these individuals to be as independent as possible and not need to rely on family and friends all the time. If you or someone you know has this dual loss and wants to learn more about this FREE program, or upcoming events that will give you more information, you can contact Taylor at 984-664-0703 or taylor.ofori@vancro.com.

Accessible Pharmacy

This program provides your prescription information in an accessible format, taking the guesswork out of knowing exactly which medications you have on hand. The various formats available to choose from include:

  • Traditional Text Labels in English and Spanish
  • Large Font Labels
  • Grade 1 Braille Labels
  • Contracted Braille Labels
  • ScripTalk Audio Labels
  • Coming this Spring: Hybrid, Tactile Audio Labels for DeafBlind Patients.

You can contact The Accessible Pharmacy Services, LLC by calling 215-799-9900.

Technology Association for Visually Impaired Missourians (TAVIM)

There is a program for Missouri seniors to obtain computers called Technology Association for Visually Impaired Missourians (TAVIM). This program assists seniors, fifty-five and older, who are not familiar with technology, helping them to comfortably move into the 21st century. Learning to use an accessible computer can make a huge difference in a senior’s life by giving them the ability to do things like shop online and email family and friends.

The mission of TAVIM is to provide computer equipment, training materials, and other adaptive technology to qualifying Missourians who are visually impaired, with the intent to empower individuals in current-day communication.

Phone: 844-55-TAVIM (844-558-2846)

Email: 2020tavim@gmail.com

To apply for services with TAVIM go to:

https://www.tavi-mo.org/services/services-application.

Personal Request

One of our readers, Stephanie, is interested to know if any of our readers have had the experience of having an ostomy and would love to hear from you. If anybody knows of a group set up for ostomates who are blind, that would be valuable information to her. If there is no such group, she’s interested in setting up an email list to discuss issues and be a support. If anybody is interested, please write to her at stephiecat4@gmail.com.

Amazon’s New Feature

Is There an Amazon Doctor in The House?

Teladoc has joined with Amazon to launch a "virtual care" service that will offer Amazon customers a telehealth feature. This feature will be available on Amazon Echo, Echo Dot, or Echo Show. By saying “Alexa, I want to talk to a doctor,” you will be connected with the Teladoc call center, and then a Teladoc health provider will call back through your device. This service will be available 24/7 for nonemergency needs, like allergies or colds, and will initially be audio-only. A video chat feature is set to be offered soon. However, it isn’t for free. For people with insurance, the out-of-pocket cost will vary depending on coverage. The cost per visit is $75 without insurance. The Teladoc call center will collect the patient's medical history and insurance information during the initial call. This service is currently available in a limited area but is growing fast.

Don’t forget you can help support MCB when you shop on Amazon. Just set up an Amazon Smile account. You can contribute without even thinking about it while you shop!

Helpful Numbers

Amazon Accessibility Help: 888-283-1678

Apple Disability Help: 877-204-3930

Instacart Help: 844-981-3433

Advocates for Service Animal Partners (ASAP) 855-272-7211.

U.S. Access Board

The U.S. Access Board offers technical assistance by calling 1-202-272-0080, extension 3, or by email at ta@access-board.gov from 10:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m. (ET) weekdays. Accessibility specialists are available to answer questions on accessibility as it relates to the built environment, outdoor sites, streets and sidewalks, transportation vehicles and vessels, information and communication technology, and medical diagnostic equipment.

The Lower LEft-Hand Drawer

Survival Without a Can Opener

Have you ever been in a situation where you were starving and needed a can opener to feed yourself? Perhaps you went camping, miles from civilization, and you lost all of your food when your campsite was attacked by a hungry bear, and you found the old shack of a miner to take refuge in. The place might have little to offer in the way of comfort, but the kitchen is full of canned goods. But unfortunately, horror of horrors, there isn’t a can opener in sight, and it is doubtful you can get Chinese delivery! Or (and this is my favorite) envision yourself in one of those end-of-the-world survival scenarios, where you are trapped in a house, hiding out from the brain-eating zombies, and with loads of canned food all around you but no can opener. You end up dying from hunger, wishing you had boned up on your survival skills before having this lovely adventure!

Well, guess what? There are other ways to get into that lifesaving can of spam. So, how do you open a can without a can opener? There are several ways to do this. While it's possible to open a can with a rough surface or a pocketknife in a pinch, using this method might mean you should have packed the First Aid kit instead of that cooler of beer. Well, I’ve kept you guessing long enough. A safe, easy solution to opening a can without a can opener can be found in the cutlery drawer. The secret weapon is none other than a simple metal spoon!

With a little friction, the metal of the spoon thins and cuts through the metal of the can lid. Although a metal spoon poses less of a threat than a sharpened knife, it remains important to handle the can with care, as the lid is still quite sharp. Following the professionally tried and true method below, you should be able to enjoy baked beans and pineapple in no time at all. Bon Appetit!

Set the can down on a steady table or countertop, holding it firmly in place. Use your other hand to hold the spoon at a 90-degree angle over the can, with the bowl of the spoon towards the bottom. Position the tip of the spoon against the inner lid of the can, with the inside of the bowl of the spoon facing in. Set the spoon in the groove on the lip of the can where the lid meets the rim. Rub the tip of the spoon on the lip of the can, working back and forth over a small area until the friction thins the metal and the spoon rubs through the lid. Move on to another small area until you've rubbed the spoon through the metal all around the rim of the can. Once you've circled the entire can, the lid should be loose. Dig the spoon under the lid and use the spoon to pry the lid upwards. Be careful not to touch the edge of the lid with your finger, as it will be very sharp. Use a towel to protect your hand and dispose of the lid.

If, however, the previous person in your situation took all the spoons with him when he set out to commune with nature and he lost in a one-on-one altercation with a ten-point buck, never to return, don’t fear! There are a couple of other ways to open that can of corn beef hash! Here are two more backup ways to open a can without a can opener, as printed in the Survival Guide for Dummies!

It is just assumed that anyone leaving the comfort of their home (and especially their best friend Mrs. Can-Opener) would at least have a pocketknife on them if they were a smart individual. Here is how to open a can with your pocketknife. Although this method is definitely more perilous than opening a can with a metal spoon, desperate times call for desperate measures. I can only hope you remembered the first aid kit. Hold the can steady in your hand on a flat surface. Poke the tip of the knife through the top of the can. Continue poking holes around the edge of the can top until you are able to pry the top from the can. Bandage those bleeding fingers.

This last method is for those individuals who have managed to prove there really is “one born every minute.” Well, you managed to be the brightest candle in the box, with no can opener, metal spoon, or pocketknife. While it may appear that you'll have to survive on the granola bars you packed for the rest of your camping trip or, barring that, begin digging for grub worms, you're not totally out of luck just yet!

There's one more way to open a can without a can opener that takes a whole lot of brute force and patience. Find a rough surface, like a rock or a slab of concrete, and use that surface to sand down the ridge of the can until it breaks the seal on the top. Be sure to rotate the can so that you're evenly sanding down the top and have an extra T-shirt or sweat rag ready to catch and clean off the top when it finally pops. Squeezing the sides of the can every so often also helps put pressure on the top seal. Once there's moisture on your make-shift sander, you've struck (liquid) gold and the can's seal should be open!

Eureka! You've accomplished the impossible: you've opened a can without a can opener. Now let’s see if you can make it back to civilization without a compass. I believe the lost goose flying south might have taken it!

Removing Your Internet Presence, Is It Possible?

There are a lot of good reasons people are opting to remove personal information from Google: A simple Google search can potentially give someone more information about you than you’d like. A stalker, an employer, or a nosy coworker can often easily find information about where you live, if you’ve had a bankruptcy, your family’s names, and more. In some cases, confidential information like your credit card details, medical history, and signature are also available online. At best, this can be embarrassing. At worst, it raises concerns and could potentially be financially devastating. However, no matter what steps you take there is always the chance something got missed. Google is trying to address these concerns.

This past April, Google announced that it has updated its policies to allow people to request the removal of their sensitive and personally identifiable information from search results. This adds to existing policies allowing people to request the removal of highly personal information that could cause them direct harm. Previously, Google would only agree to remove information that could cause direct harm, such as explicit images and videos or fake pornography, if a user requested it.

However, now Google is willing to consider removing general personal and sensitive information for those who wish to protect their privacy. This could include your home address, telephone number, email address, work address, credit card or bank details, medical history, and confidential log-in details.

To find out just how much of your information is floating around cyberspace, try doing an incognito search by going to the Chrome browser menu and selecting “File” and “New Incognito Window.” Then type your name into the search box surrounded by quotes. For example, if your name is Joe Jones, you would search “Joe Jones.” Be sure to Google your first and last name, and then your first, middle, and last name. Take note of what pops up in the searches. These will be what you want to focus on removing if they seem problematic.

If you’re trying to delete yourself from Google searches so that corporations won’t have your information, you’re going in the wrong direction. Most of the information that companies get about you isn’t gathered from a Google search. This information is typically collected from your social media usage or online shopping habits.

Unfortunately, once the information is in hand, it’s sold from company to company. So even if you decide to wipe yourself from Google searches, there will likely still be plenty of information about you floating around. Removing yourself from Google search results will only help prevent future employers, potential stalkers, and nosy people from easily finding your personal information.

To remove yourself from searches, your first step is to delete your social media accounts, or at least change the information from your real name to a fake name. Google can’t show information that doesn’t exist. If a website removes your credentials, Google will re-crawl, and your information will no longer appear in search results. Also, don’t forget to delete or change old accounts that you haven’t used in years, like on MySpace or Reddit. Googling yourself should turn up any old accounts you may not remember.

If you want to keep your current accounts as they are, then change your settings on the social media sites you use to “private.” This prevents Google from showing your pictures in search results. However, it can take weeks for deleted content to stop showing up in search results. For anything that remains, you can request Google directly to remove this information by filling out the search engine’s request form.

Use this form to request that Google either hide the search results or delete the content.

Depending on which option you pick, you’ll be asked for more information, such as whether you are requesting the content be removed from Google search results and a website or just the search results, and whether you’ve contacted the website owner. From there, specify what type of personal information is showing up in a Google search. Check the box indicating the content is live (use this form if the content has already been removed but is still showing up). Google will ask whether the request pertains to doxing, which the company defines as “contact information being shared with malicious, threatening, or harassing intent.” You’ll need to provide links to the offending website, search results, or picture, and give your name, country of residence, and email address.

Toward the end of the form, you can share a list of relevant search terms, such as your full name, nicknames, and maiden name. Google will also ask you to share supplementary details before signing and submitting the removal request. Google will send you an email right after your submission to acknowledge it has received your request. The company may contact you if your request does not provide enough details. If the case does not meet the requirements for removal, you’ll receive a brief explanation as to why and be given a chance to supply additional materials to support your case and resubmit your claim. Unfortunately, Google has not specified how long it is likely to take for decisions to be made. Also, remember that this doesn’t cover everything on the world wide web.

Google only has power over what appears in its search results—not what appears on the internet. Plus, there’s no guarantee that the search engine will agree to remove the results containing your information, or that it will remove your info from all searches instead of just those containing your name and aliases. It cannot remove your information from government or public records, news articles or social media accounts.

Besides removing your personal information from Google searches, there are other steps you can take to delete more of your digital footprint. While googling yourself, you probably found sites that say things like, “We’ve found the phone number for Joe Jones” or “Click here to get the arrest records of Joe Jones.” These sites are data-collection and data-broker sites. You can use them to access information about someone—including their address, court history, phone number, and family members’ names—for a fee. Getting your data removed from these sites is totally doable, but it can be a hassle, as each one has a different process. You’ll need to follow the instructions on each individual site, or you can use services like DeleteMe, which will do the work for you for a fee.

Keep in mind: There’s a chance your info could end up on these sites again in the future. One way to limit the amount of data you inadvertently share is to use good passwords and two factor authentication. Another thing you can do is to turn off location tracking on your smart phone and any apps you use to prevent them from collecting and selling your data.

The Internet is still the Wild West, with little government regulation, and it is very difficult to have anything taken down, even if it makes you look bad or is embarrassing. Unfortunately, often your only recourse is the kindness of strangers, and sadly, we don’t live in a very kind time. Remember when technology was having a color T.V., and the world at large didn’t know when you washed your hair or what you had for dinner? Oh, Mayberry, where are you?!

MCB Board MINUTES

April 19, 2022

President Naomi Soule called the meeting to order at 7:00 P.M.

Joe Morgan said a prayer.

Joe Morgan , Recording Secretary called the roll. All officers except for the Treasurer were present. Affiliates not represented were Delta Area, Joplin, Lake Stockton, River City Workers, and Southeast Missouri United Blind Club.

Before we went into executive session Beverly Kaskadden expressed four concerns that she had as to whether this meeting should continue.

1.Not enough notice was given.

2.The Minutes were not in.

3.The handbook is not updated; and

4. A statement from Mutual of America was not yet available.

Discussion followed. Beverly Kaskadden moved that we postpone this meeting until we have proper notification, and we have more information to base our decision on and Minutes and handbook are up to date. A roll call vote was taken, and the vote ended in a 6-6 tie. President Naomi cast her vote to break the tie and the motion was defeated.

DeAnna Noriega moved that we go into closed session.

Closed Session

A motion was made and seconded to offer the position of Office Clerk to Nance Thier. The motion was adopted.

The meeting adjourned at 8:18 p.m.

Respectfully submitted, Joe Morgan, Secretary

April 28, 2022

President Naomi Soule called the meeting to order at 7:00 p.m. Joe Morgan said a prayer. Recording Secretary Joe Morgan called the roll. All officers and directors were present. Joplin was the only affiliate not represented. Naomi welcomed online listeners. The agenda was approved with additions. Health Benefits, ACB Lifetime member and items from the April 19, 2022, board meeting was added. The Minutes for January 27, 2022 were approved. The Minutes for February 10, 202, were approved. The Minutes for February 24, 2022 were approved.

President's Report

Multimedia Chair Search: Denny Huff has resigned from the Multimedia committee. Naomi Soule asked if anyone knows a person who can chair the committee to let her know. Naomi also needs someone to chair the Blind Pension Committee. This person should have a knowledge of the blind pension and be able to talk to people. Naomi would also like to know of people to serve on this committee. Linda Gerken moved that the resignation of Eleanor Coyle on March 14, 2022, be accepted. The motion was adopted. Chip Hailey moved that Denny Huff's resignation be accepted. The motion was adopted.

MCB Awards

Chip Hailey talked about the different MCB Awards and the qualifications for each one. He said that it has been some time since MCB has given an ACB lifetime member award. He moved that we give a lifetime member award to Kay Malmquist for her outstanding leadership and for what she means to this organization and all the different things that she has contributed as our Madam Vice President. The motion was adopted. Kay made a short acceptance speech thanking the Board for this award. Naomi Soule asked reps to go to their affiliates to see if there are people that could be nominated for the MCB awards and to let the office know.

MCB Website

Darrel Vickers said that for the last two years the website has been a mess. He has offered to get the website back to where it needs to be. He said that it would take about a year to get the website rebuilt and updated with everything that needs to be on there. He is talking to companies, and he will report back to us on which one will help us with updating and hosting.  The Board voted without objection to allow Darrel to be our webmaster.

Chip Hailey said he and Denny have done Meet the People of MCB since last April and they have received many comments from people who like to listen. Denny Huff decided to step away. The good news is that we do have someone that has stepped up and wants to be the cohost along with Chip to continue Meet The people of MCB and that is our Vice President, Kay Malmquist. They plan to start interviews next Tuesday. Chip said with Kay as cohost, Meet The people will be better than ever. Congratulations Kay.

Treasurer's Report

MCB balances are: Checking account $3,815.77, Interest Account $241,149, Freedom $1,735,940, MODGI $1,787,840, and Growth $256,814. The total investments are $4,021,743. Chip Hailey asked Jack Lenk if he has found an auditor? Jack said he hasn’t, but he will ask people in other organizations who they use Naomi Soule asked if a receipt has been turned in for the bowling tournament? Jack said he would check in to it.

Convention Committee Report

Jesuita Tabor said that we would be at the Westport Sheraton Chalet October 6-9, 2022. Room cost is $103 plus tax. There will be no housekeeping. Anyone wanting extra linens or to have your trash emptied will have to call the desk for these matters. Jesuita also told how to make reservations. If anyone has a problem making reservations, they can contact the office. The online registration form and agenda will be available on July 1, 2022. Jesuita gave us information on restaurant hours. Menus to local restaurants outside the hotel will be available in our packets. Jesuita also answered questions from the Board.

Personnel Committee Report

Kay Malmquist thanked her committee for their hard work on getting Nance Thier hired. Nance Thier had a job offer with Channel 5 but decided to go with MCB. Naomi Soule suggested that we call and welcome her.

Public Relations Committee Report

Chip Hailey said since he has been elected Public Relations Chair in October, he has hit the ground running. He began gathering a calendar of events to be recorded and uploaded to the MCB Information line.

He has also been reaching out to the different affiliates asking about their interest in developing an affiliate web page and got a great response but because of the issues with the website after we left Firespring a year ago that's when the problems began after Darrel Vickers and Virginia Drapkin get the website fixed, he will once again reach out to the affiliates and special interest groups for what they want to put on the affiliate web pages. He has also done some fairs recently; one in St. Peters he thanked Beverly Kaskadden for helping with and one was scheduled for Cape Girardeau, but he was unable to make that one. He also did Power Up. He thanked President  Naomi Soule and Vice President Kay  Malmquist and both of their husbands and his driver Bob Collier for their assistance. He has purchased some braille t-shirts in Cardinal Red and Royal Blue with the puffed braille alphabet on the back with the hand sign that really looks cool. On the front, it has the MCB logo. When they order more t-shirts, they will get the larger sizes. They are $20 and you can get one by calling the MCB office. One of the things he is planning to do this year which hasn't been done before is to take MCB to the State Fair. If it goes well, he would like to make it an annual event. President Soule, Vice President Malmquist, and Linda Gerken and Blind of Central Missouri members will also be helping. The dates for the fair will be August 11-21, 2022.  Chip Hailey moved that the Public Relations Committee be given $5000 to purchase promotional items that are needed for the fair. The motion was adopted.

Special Services Guidelines

The Special Services Committee approached the policy committee and asked to make changes to the guidelines streamlining them. A member can receive up to $500 depending on the discretion of the committee. A member can only apply once in a three-year period. Linda Gerken moved that the new guidelines be approved. The motion was adopted.

Donation for Children's Vision Summit

No action was taken on this item because a $2000 donation is already appropriated in the budget.

Bambee H/R Approval

President Naomi Soule said an email was sent out concerning the different levels of service provided by Bambee. With Level Two access we would get actual phone access to an H/R manager. This would be helpful if there are changes, we have to make on policies or government guidelines they would be made automatically. President Soule and Vice President Malmquist will be meeting with a Bambee representative. Beverly Kaskadden did some research and found that in 2016 a company called Paychex did an employee handbook that was approved by the board and our attorney at that time, Natalie Higgins. Beverly said that it looked good. Naomi took questions from the Board concerning the two handbooks. Beverly said she would send the Paychex Handbook to the Board list. Naomi said she would let Bambee know that we would postpone anything at this point. The Paychex handbook is 95 pages.

Per diem

Beverly Kaskadden asked about the per diem. President Naomi Soule read the per diem to the Board. Out-of-state $70 per day. In state breakfast is $12 lunch is $14 and $24 for dinner and 59 cents per mile. there was considerable discussion on this. There will be more discussion on the per diem on the May 17, 2022, Board meeting.

Health Benefits Guidelines

Linda Gerken would like to see the Health Benefits guidelines changed back to the way they were before they were changed three years ago. President Naomi Soule said she should work with the Policy Chair, Raymond Bishop. This will also be discussed on May 17.

Eugene Taylor Report

Eugene Taylor read the TBS and MCB report dated April 28, 2022. He outlined five areas of key concern. He is doing weekly meetings with Board members to discuss these concerns. He answered questions from the Board. President Naomi Soule sent out what MCB does and a resource list. There will be a meeting tomorrow. Eugene said that he would be happy to talk to anybody; just call him or email him. DeAnna Noriega moved that we go in to closed session.

Chip Hailey brought up that some years ago they had a Minutes Committee. The Board decided not to have a committee.

The meeting adjourned at 10:59 p.m.

Respectfully submitted, Joe Morgan Recording Secretary

May 17, 2022

President Naomi Soule called the meeting to order at 7:00 p.m. Joe Morgan said a prayer. Recording Secretary Joe Morgan called the roll. All officers and directors were present. Joplin Service Club was not represented.

President Soule welcomed online listeners.

The agenda was approved with one omission, the Health Benefits Guidelines were not quite ready.

The Minutes for April 19, 2022 were approved.

Website Update

Darrel Vickers reported that he has been talking to several companies, but nothing has been nailed down yet. He has a couple of good prospects. He said that it will take some money to get the new website up and running. He asked the Board for $7,000. Discussion followed. Craig Ancell moved that the Board give Darrel $7,000. The motion was adopted.

The per diem

President Naomi Soule said that information was sent out about the per diem and we decided that we would talk it at this meeting. Beverly Kaskadden moved that we accept the proposed per diem. Carl Chappell read the proposed per diem. Milage is 60 cents per mile. Breakfast is $13, lunch is $16, and dinner is $26. Melvin Smith suggested that breakfast cost be increased to $18, $32 for lunch and $45 for dinner. Carl amended Beverly's motion that the per diem be changed to breakfast $18 lunch $32 and dinner $45. The amendment was adopted. Beverly moved to accept the per diem as presented. The motion was adopted.

There was discussion as to how convention expenses are applied in the budget. Chip Hailey suggested that an itemized list would help.

ACB Grant

Wilma Chestnut-House moved that the $500 maximum amount be released and the entire $20,000 be used and divided up among the members going to the ACB Convention. Twelve people have applied for the grant so far. After considerable discussion Wilma restated her motion that the $500 ACB grant per person be released and the $20,000 be divided equally among the members attending. The motion was adopted.

Background Checks

President Naomi Soule said that she and Chip Hailey looked to see if any background checks were done on Board members, and they could not find anything. Chip said if the Standing Rules committee passes on Friday they could go through the Minutes and look for them.

Audio Proposals for our Convention

Wilma Chestnut-House moved that Chris Dickey take the votes and report back the results. The motion was adopted. Members can vote until 9:30 pm May 17, 2022, and from 11:00 a.m. until 6:00 p.m.  on May 18, 2022. President Naomi Soule thanked Southeast Missouri United Blind Club Rep, Lee Young, who is moving to Wisconsin, for his service to the Board and wished him best of luck.

The meeting adjourned at 8:19 p.m.

Respectfully submitted, Joe Morgan Recording Secretary