A “forward from Grandma”: Our generation is awesome.


I used to get all kinds of effluence in my inbox, mostly from people forwarding things to me that they could have debunked with a 5-second visit to Snopes.com, or telling me that Microsoft would pay 20¢ to some cancer fund for each forward (they won’t.) In the course of telling people that these kinds of viral messages were essentially destructive time-wasters, the deluge has dwindled to a trickle.

But every now and then I get something that I like, and which I feel is worth sharing. This is one of them.

I had to do some massive re-formatting of the text, removing countless exclamation points!!!! fixing grammar and punctuaton, and making it look less like some clickbait thing from BuzzFeed, but when you get down to the core ideas, they resonate with me. Without further ado (I’ve added some notes):

To those of us born 1925 – 1979, and to all the kids who survived the 1930s, 40s, 50s, 60s and 70s:

First, we survived being born to mothers who may have smoked and/or drank while they were pregnant. They took aspirin, ate blue cheese dressing, tuna from a can, and didn’t get tested for diabetes. 1

Then, after that trauma, we were put to sleep on our tummies in baby cribs covered with bright colored lead-based paints.

We had no childproof lids on medicine bottles, locks on doors or cabinets, and, when we rode our bikes, we had baseball caps, not helmets, on our heads.

As infants and children, we would ride in cars with no car seats, no booster seats, no seat belts, no air bags, bald tires and sometimes no brakes.

Riding in the back of a pick- up truck on a warm day was always a special treat.

We drank water from the garden hose and not from a bottle.

We shared one soft drink with four friends, from one bottle, and no one actually died from this.

We ate cupcakes, white bread, real butter, and bacon. We drank kool-aid made with real white sugar. And we weren’t overweight. Why? Because we were always outside playing. 2

We would leave home in the morning and play all day, as long as we were back when the streetlights came on. No one was able to reach us all day, and we were okay.

We would spend hours building our go-carts out of scraps and then ride them down the hill, only to find out we forgot the brakes. After running into the bushes a few times, we learned to solve the problem.

We did not have play stations, Nintendos and Xboxes. There were no video games, no 150 channels on cable, no video movies or DVDs, no surround-sound or CDs, no cell phones, no personal computers, no internet and no chat rooms. We had friends and we went outside and found them!

☛ We fell out of trees, got cut, broke bones and teeth, and there were no lawsuits from those accidents. 3

We played outside, in parks and on the streets, alone, and nobody accused our parents of neglect. 4

We would get spankings with wooden spoons, switches, ping-pong paddles, or just a bare hand, and no one would call child services to report abuse.

We ate worms, and mud pies made from dirt, and the worms did not live in us forever.

We were given B-B guns for our 10th birthdays, 22 rifles for our 12th, rode horses, made up games with sticks and tennis balls, and although we were told it would happen, we did not put out very many eyes.

We rode bikes or walked to a friend’s house and knocked on the door or rang the bell, or just walked in and talked to them.

Little league had tryouts and not everyone made the team. Those who didn’t had to learn to deal with disappointment. Imagine that.


Signs like this were not needed.

The idea of a parent bailing us out if we broke the law was unheard of. They actually sided with the law.

When we got bad grades, we were punished – not the teacher.


These generations have produced some of the best risk-takers, problem solvers, and inventors ever.

The past 50 to 85 years have seen an explosion of innovation and new ideas.

We had freedom, failure, success and responsibility, and we learned how to deal with it all.

If you are one of those born between 1925-1970, congratulations!

Naturally, these are not absolutes, but rather thoughts about how our society has changed. Sadly, despite all the amazing advances, not always for the better.

The Old Wolf has spoken.


1) Yes, this and some of the other things mentioned above did cause accidents, health issues, and injuries. They still do. But strip away the lawyers and the nanny state, and most people would still survive.

2) There were some overweight kids. But they were the exception, rather than an ever-growing statistic.

3) This is my favorite one. I execrate the litigious nature of today’s society.

4) They even have a term for this nowadays: free-range parenting. This is abomination. Back then, it was just the way life was.

Protect yourself from Phishing attacks


Great advice from a local business:

  • Be suspicious of any email that requires “immediate action” or creates a sense of urgency. This is a common technique used by criminals to rush people into making a mistake.
  • Be suspicious of emails addressed to “Dear Customer” or some other generic salutation. If it is your bank, they will know your name.
  • Be suspicious of grammar or spelling mistakes; most businesses proofread their messages carefully before sending them.
  • Do not click on links. Instead, copy the URL from the email and paste it into your browser. Even better is to simply type the destination name into your browser.
  • Hover your mouse over the link. This will show you the true destination where you would go if you actually clicked on it. If the true destination of the link is different than what is shown in the email, this may be an indication of fraud.
  • Be suspicious of attachments, and only open those that you are expecting.
  • Just because you got an email from your friend does not mean they sent it. Your friend’s computer may have been infected or their account may have been compromised, and malware is sending the email to all of your friend’s contacts.
  • If you get a suspicious email from a trusted friend or colleague, call them to confirm that they sent it. Always use a telephone number that you already know or can independently verify, not one that was included in the message.

I’ve mentioned most of these in various other posts, but this was an excellent summary that deserved to be shared. Be careful out there.

The Old Wolf has spoken.

100 years of Fashion

Courtesy of MODE, a young lady gets dolled up in the fashions of 100 years’ time. The images of 1955 and 1965 seem frightfully familiar – I have visions of my mother in clothes like this, and I can imagine her in clothing of the previous decades as she set out from sleepy Salt Lake for the jungle of New York to pursue a career as an actress. She seems to have missed the signature looks of subsequent decades, having become by that time a woman “of a certain age.”

1915 1925 1935 1945 1955 1965 1975 1985 1995 2005 2015

The whole video is delightful:

The Old Wolf has spoken.

A Letter from the “Assistant Secretary of State.”

Please us with this email again! Right, folks – the Bureau of Consular Affairs is going to use a foxmail address. For the love of all that’s holy, never respond to an email like this. If you do, you’re handing your hard-earned money to fleabitten African scammers. YES, THIS IS A SCAM. Yes, I’m SHOUTING!

From: Assistant Secretary of State Roberta Jacobson <Anderson@gamma.ocn.ne.jp>
Subject: Assistant Secretary of State Roberta Jacobson,

To: undisclosed-recipients:;

Bureau of Consular Affairs

Washington, DC 20520
Greeting from USA Embassy,

Attn Dear Citizens! Please us with this email again ( homelandsecurity20@foxmail.com )

This is to notify you that your consignment has been in our custody we are waiting for you to comply with our instructions before your package delivery will be effected to your delivery address. We have been waiting for you to contact us regarding your consignment box which Courier Company suppose to deliver to you which is on hold by USA Home Land Security Department Bureau and requesting for clearance certificate which will be obtain from the origination of the consignment box before it will be released. As a result of you not comply within duration given by Benin Government that is the reason the consignment box was diverted to treasury but the government of American have decide to make the world happy by been willing to release the package consisting of a Bank Draft Total sum of $ 3.5millions usd written with your name as the beneficiary within 4 hours immediately you secure the clearance certificate today.

After the Meeting Held by Our board of Director Which WAS Concluded That the Delivery of your Consignment to your address MUST BE Complete within 4hrs upon your Comply to Our requirement Which IS by sending the sum of  $ 155.00Usd  to enable the origin Obtain the needed certificate and your consignment for onward delivery to your house immediately without any further delay we decide to contact you because we confirm some offices are trying to deceive you.

Note that your consignment box has been arrived in US embassy and waiting to receive clearance certificate before the gate pass is given. Mean while you are advice to reconfirm the below information upon contacting us to avoid delivery to wrong person.

1, Full name:
2, Address:
3, Occupation:
4, Cell-Phone:
5, Nearest Airport:

Once you notify us with the Above Information include with the $ 55 payment we Will release your Consignment to you. Note That you Are expected to pay only  $ 155.00Usd  for Clearance certificate and you Are to pay it to Benin Republic as the origination of the Consignment box in favor of: Ofor Eze as Our accountant officer in Benin Republic Send the  $ 155.00Usd through Western Union or Money gram once you receive this mail with the Information Below for IMMEDIATE release of your Consignment box,

Receiver name: Ofor Eze
Country .. Benin Republic
city .. Cotonou
question: Yes
Answer: Yes.
Amount necessary. $ 155.00usd

Once you send the money, try to notify us with the MTCN for easy pick up and for immediate action on the release of your consignment.

Please treat this as matter of urgency .Note that any uncliam consignment will be return to the Courier Company after 3 days for final divertion as a result of failure to comply with our instruction and claim your consignment which arrived from Africa to our local airport here in USA.

So you are urgently advise to comply with our demand so that we will release your consignment we are working for the best of America citizen.

Treat with dispatch,
Yours Faithfully,
Assistant Secretary of State Roberta Jacobson,
Call +19189363447
Email: homelandsecurity20@foxmail.com

The Lads from Benin are still busy. They may be from Lagos, too – one can never tell where these drones are operating from.

Here’s my response to this one:

Nigerian Camels

All I can hope is that emails like this raise their blood pressure enough to precipitate a massive stroke…

The Old Wolf has spoken.

The Catacomb Saints: How many clickbait titles can you come up with?

From Wikipedia:

Catacomb saints are ancient Roman corpses that were exhumed from the catacombs of Rome, given fictitious names and sent abroad as relics of saints from the 16th century to the 19th century. They were typically lavishly decorated with gold and precious stones.

There’s no question the subject is of some interest to scholars and historians – I’ve seen a few of these in my peregrinations around the world.


“Though selling the relics would have been considered simony, enterprising church officials still managed to raise funds while countering the iconoclasm by charging for transportation, decoration, induction and blessing.”

And keeping in mind that fundraising was foremost among church leaders then as now, it’s not surprising that so much effort was put into the preservation and illumination of these relics. Some of the bodies may have been of early Christian martyrs, but none were of any particular religious significance. Dressing them up and giving them the name of a saint, however, was the 16th-century equivalent of The National Enquirer or Buzzfeed.

These relics have been around for a long time, but when the Internet discovers something, it’s often presented as a “stunning new find” or some other silliness – anything to get eyeballs on ads, as you can see below.

Let’s look at the kinds of headlines one sees with a simple search for “Rome jeweled skeletons:”

  • These Skeletons Were Found In Roman Catacombs And You’ll Never Believe What They’re Wearing
  • Unbelievable Skeletons Unearthed From the Catacombs Of Rome
  • Meet the Fantastically Bejeweled Skeletons of Catholicism’s Forgotten Martyrs
  • Beauty from the crypt: Europe’s jeweled skeletons
  • 19 Bejeweled Skeletons That’ll Blow Your Mind
  • Incredible skeletal remains of Catholic saints still dripping in gems and jewellery discovered by ‘Indiana Bones’ explorer
  • Beauty Beyond the Grave: The Story Behind Europe’s Bejeweled Skeletons
  • Secrets of the Catholic Church: Unbelievable Jeweled Skeletons Discovered in the Catacombs of Rome
  • The ghastly glory of Europe’s jewel-encrusted relics
  • The Catacomb Saints – So-Called Saint Skeletons Dressed in Jewel-Encrusted Gold and Silver
  • Skeletons Unearthed From The Catacombs Of Rome Have Jeweled Beards
  • Bones with Bling: The Amazing Jewelled Skeletons of Europe

As mentioned above, many of the referenced articles try to make it appear as though these relics were just recently discovered.

Click through for a collection of these images.

PS: if you do this, screw you. (Text like this often appears when you copy and paste from a website):

Read more: http://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-2413688/Incredible-skeletal-remains-Catholic-saints-dripping-gems-jewellery-dug-Indiana-Bones-explorer.html#ixzz3cyd8uT2J
Follow us: @MailOnline on Twitter | DailyMail on Facebook

This is the 21st century equivalent of blinking text. It’s annoying, no soul in their right mind would ever incorporate it into a cross-post, and it’s a waste of everyone’s time.

The Old Wolf has spoken.