Who left mystery package on the front doorstep?

A real "whodunnit"... last Wednesday morning Maizie went out on her front porch and found her morning papers neatly stacked there along with an 8" x 8" "express mail" package neatly sealed in duct tape with the message, "Dear Citizen, Please accept this complimentary gift (paid for with your tax dollars) compliments of U.S. Department of Homeland Security. Enclosed: One (1) government approved emergency survival kit."

She picked it up (it rattled), and put it and the papers in the house before racing off to an appointment. When she returned, she thought about it a while (does a minute or two account for a "while?") and decided to check out the "usual suspects" who leave things on her porch. When the first two didn't pan out (a third was in New Orleans and didn't make the cut), she decided that she'd better do what Homeland Security tells you to do ... "call the police if you receive a 'suspicious' package."

So, she did. Soon after, two very nice deputies came up to check out the package. "Definitely, a case for the bomb squad." "I wonder if there's money in it?" "I think it's a practical joke."

The two deputies looked it over and decided that since M had touched it without blowing up, they would open it. While the taller deputy "cowered" (you would have thought he'd have the courtesy not to laugh out loud, but noooo ... ), the other deputy took out his pocket knife and opened the thing. They did not vaporize on the spot, so looked inside the box ... a roll of duct tape, a can of sauerkraut, a news clipping about feeding fermented vegetables to chickens in Korea that cured their bird flu, and a typed explanation of how the "kit" is designed to protect you from a terrorist or biological attack and an outbreak of the bird flu (if you recall, Homeland Security was big on duct tape last year, and sauerkraut is a "fermented" veggie).

The deputies decided that M did not have to worry ... the package was filled with useful things and information, so they left muttering something about, "... making our day... " The conclusion to all this is that EC, PS, DG and a couple of others are still considered prime suspects, but at this moment the culprit has not been fingered. Next time ... send money ...

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Too bad if you missed the Carson Tahoe Regional Medical Center open house on Saturday. The Board of Trustees and the entire staff deserve our plaudits for bringing this new facility to fruition. Every one of them worked extremely hard to make it a banner day ... it was much appreciated by those who took the tour. Congratulations ...

Mel Rappaport tells us that men do remember anniversaries ... "A woman awoke one night to find her husband wasn't in bed. She went downstairs and found him drinking coffee, deeply in thought.

"What's the matter, dear?" she asked.

He looked at her and said, "Do you remember 20 years ago when we were dating and you were only 16?" Touched by his sensitivity, she replied, "Yes, I do."

"And do you remember when your father caught us in the back seat of the car making love?" Again, she nodded.

He paused, then continued, although the words were not coming easily ... "and do you remember when your father shoved a shotgun in my face and said, "Either, you marry my daughter or I will send you to jail for 20 years."

"I remember that, too," she replied softly.

He wiped a tear from his cheek ..." I would have gotten out today ..."

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The Carson Democrats are sponsoring a blood drive the entire month of November at United Blood Services, 256 E. Winnie Lane, Carson City (887-9111 for information and appointments). If for some reason you cannot donate blood, feel free to donate homemade cookies or fresh fruit for those who can give ... it would help UBS out tremendously ... thank you ...

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We don't know how many of you saw the news footage of the terrorist bombings in Amman, Jordan ... one of the bombs went off at a wedding, killing both the fathers of the bride and groom. The most telling pictures were of the groom saying over and over again ... "This is not Islam ... this is not Islam." It's too bad the horrific fringe elements tar an entire religion ... but it's a lesson, too, for the mainstream to stand up and defeat them...

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Auditions for Proscenium Players "One Flew Over The Cuckoo's Nest" will take place at the Brewery Arts Center tomorrow at 6 p.m. ... call 883-1976 for information. Also, the Western Nevada Astronomical Society will meet Thursday at 7 p.m. at the Jack C. Davis Observatory behind the WNCC campus ... meet the astronomers and hear about the public star parties every Saturday night ... "Star light, star bright ... "

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It's "Nutcracker" time again ... Pinkerton Ballet Theatre presents the 17th annual production of "The Nutcracker Ballet" on Nov. 25 and 26 at 7 p.m., with a matinee on Sunday, the 27th at 2 p.m. ... it's a wonderful way to celebrate the holiday season.

Carson City's own Tristi McMaster will reprise her role as the Sugar Plum Fairy, while her husband, Norvell Robinson Jr., will be seen in the Arabian Coffee pas de deux (a "dance for two performers" ... not a menu item, as in "pass the ducks" ... see, Dan, now you don't have to look it up in the dictionary). For information on this wonderful event, call 882-7125 or 882-1806. See you there ...

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Also on tap, the Great American Weight Loss Challenge III victory celebration will be held on Friday, at Nevada Fitness Center at 829 Fairview Drive in Carson City at 4:30 p.m. There are prizes for the three top teams (Carolyn is on a team and is working night and day to be in the competition ... well, maybe only days ... then again, maybe only last Thursday ... oh, well ...).

For information, call Annette Luis at 885-1728 ... and put down that pie, C ... or are you just getting ready for your next Thanksgiving tips?

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And here they are ... always use ice water when you add it to pie crust ... it makes it flakier. And use a light egg or olive oil wash on the crust before baking to make it shine. And Maizie's tip ... remember to "cut up" the apples before putting them in the pie ... she remembers the "simply beautiful" apple pie she got at a bake sale, only to find that the apples were baked whole in the pie (all three of them ... hey, the pie "looked great") ...

n Carolyn DeMar and Maizie Harris Jesse are longtime Carson City residents. Write to them at editor@nevadaappeal.com.


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