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Touring Trinity Site, where the atomic age began

The Coming Water Wars
Tensions between Mexican farmers and Mennonite colonies

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Celebrating with "postcards from the edge."

Outlaw Desert Plants
Invasive species are reshaping the desert

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About the cover


Mummies, Missing Keys and

     Monsters Under the Bed

          Plus more Sunday-school yarns and universal truths.



Annals of archeology... This one was dug up by The Santa Claran:

"An archeologist was digging in the Negev Desert in Israel and came upon a casket containing a mummy — a rather rare occurrence in Israel, to say the least. After examining it, he called the curator of the Israel museum in Jerusalem. 'I've just discovered a 3,000-year-old mummy of a man who died of heart failure!' the excited scientist exclaimed.

"The curator replied, 'Bring him in. We'll check it out.'

"A week later, the amazed curator called the archeologist. 'You were right about both the mummy's age and cause of death. How in the world did you know?'

"'Easy," the archeologist said. "There was a piece of paper in his hand that said, "10,000 Shekels on Goliath."'"


Efficiency expertise... Ned Ludd sent us this "lesson on how consultants can make a difference in an organization." Indeed!

"Last week, we took some friends to a restaurant, Steve's Place, and noticed that the waiter who took our order carried a spoon in his shirt pocket. It seemed a little strange. When the busboy brought our water and utensils, I observed that he also had a spoon in his shirt pocket. Then I looked around and saw that all the staff had spoons in their pockets. When the waiter came back to serve our soup I inquired, 'Why the spoon?'

"'Well,' he explained, 'the restaurant's owner hired a consultant to revamp all of our processes. After several months of analysis, they concluded that the spoon was the most frequently dropped utensil. It represents a drop frequency of approximately three spoons per table per hour. If our personnel are better prepared, we can reduce the number of trips back to the kitchen and save 15 man-hours per shift.'

"As luck would have it, I dropped my spoon and he replaced it with his spare. The waiter added, 'I'll get another spoon next time I go to the kitchen instead of making an extra trip to get it right now.'

"I was impressed. I also noticed that there was a string hanging out of the waiter's fly. Looking around, I saw that all of the waiters had the same string hanging from their zippers. So, before he walked off, I asked the waiter, 'Excuse me, but can you tell me why you have that string right there?'

"'Oh, certainly!' Then he lowered his voice. 'Not everyone is so observant. That consulting firm I mentioned also learned that we can save time in the restroom. By tying this string to the tip of our you-know-what, we can pull it out without touching it and eliminate the need to wash our hands, shortening the time spent in the restroom by 76.39%.

"I asked quietly, 'After you get it out, how do you put it back?'

"'Well,' the waiter whispered, 'I don't know about the others, but I use the spoon.'"


Losing the battle of the sexes... Two tales that may help women better understand how the male of the species thinks. The first is from GeraldH:

"Do you know that when a woman wears a leather dress, a man's heart beats quicker, his throat gets dry, he gets weak in the knees, and he thinks irrationally? Ever wonder why?

"It's because she smells like a new truck!"



Then this subtle cautionary yarn from Ramblin' Man:

"Bob decided to tie the knot with his longtime girlfriend. One evening, after the honeymoon, he was assembling some loads for an upcoming hunt. His wife was standing there at the bench watching him. After a long period of silence she finally spoke: 'Honey, I've been thinking, now that we are married, I think it's time you quit hunting, shooting, hand loading and fishing. Maybe you should sell your guns and boat.'

"Bob got a horrified look on his face.

"His wife said, 'Darling, what's wrong?'

"'There for a minute you were sounding like my ex-wife,' Bob said.

"'Ex-wife!' she screamed. 'I didn't know you were married before!'

"'I wasn't .'"


Send your tales of the battle of the sexes, favorite funnies and ageless anecdotes to diary@desertexposure.com.



Annals of absent-mindedness... Don't forget to thank Old Grumps for this one...

"Several days ago as I left a meeting at a hotel, I desperately gave myself a personal TSA patdown. I was looking for my keys. They were not in my pockets. A quick search in the meeting room revealed nothing. Suddenly, I realized I must have left them in the car. Frantically, I headed for the parking lot.

"My husband has scolded me many times for leaving the keys in the ignition. My theory is the ignition is the best place not to lose them. His theory is that the car will be stolen.

"As I burst through the door, I came to a terrifying conclusion. His theory was right. The parking lot was empty. I immediately called the police. I gave them my location, confessed that I had left my keys in the car, and that it had been stolen. Then I made the most difficult call of all: 'Honey,' I stammered (I always call him 'honey' in times like these). 'I left my keys in the car and it has been stolen.'

"There was a period of silence. I thought the call had been dropped, but then I heard his voice. 'Are you kiddin' me?' he barked. 'I dropped you off!'

"Now it was my turn to be silent. Embarrassed, I finally said, 'Well, come and get me.'

"He retorted, 'I will, as soon as I convince this policeman I have not stolen your car.'"


Freudian slips... Then there's this psychological thriller from Aletteration:

"Ever since I was a child, I'd had this fear of some one or some thing under my bed at night. At a friend's urging, I took the problem to a psychiatrist and told him, 'Every time I go to bed I think there's somebody under it. I'm scared.'

"The doctor said he could help me. 'Just put yourself in my hands for one year. Come talk to me three times a week and we should be able to get rid of those fears.'

"'How much do you charge?' I asked.

'Eighty dollars per visit,' replied the doctor.

"'I'll sleep on it,' I said.

"Six months later the doctor met me on the street. 'Why didn't you ever come to talk to me about those fears you were having?' he asked.

"'Well, 80 bucks a visit, three times a week for a year is an awful lot of money on my budget, and a bartender cured me for $10.'

"'Is that so?' he said with a bit of an attitude, 'and how, may I ask, did a bartender cure you?'

"'He told me to cut the legs off the bed! I did and there ain't nobody under there now!'"


Playing doctor... This twist on malpractice comes courtesy of CharlesC:

"A woman has sued her local hospital, saying that after her husband was treated recently, he has lost all interest in sex.

"A hospital spokesman replied, 'The man was admitted in Ophthalmology — all we did was correct his eyesight.'"


Kids say the darnedest things... More Sunday-school and otherwise blessed stories sent our way by Deborah:

"The preacher's five-year-old daughter noticed that her father always paused and bowed his head for a moment before starting his sermon. One day, she asked him why.

"'Well, honey,' he began, proud that his daughter was so observant of his messages. 'I'm asking the Lord to help me preach a good sermon.'

"'How come He doesn't answer it?' she asked."

• • •

"A rabbi said to a precocious six-year-old boy, 'So your mother says your prayers for you each night? That's very commendable. What does she say?'

"The little boy replied, 'Thank God he's in bed!'"


• • •


"During the minister's prayer one Sunday, there was a loud whistle from one of the back pews. Tommy's mother was horrified. She pinched him into silence and, after church, asked, 'Tommy, whatever made you do such a thing?'

"Tommy answered soberly, 'I asked God to teach me to whistle, and He did!'"


• • •


"A pastor asked a little boy if he said his prayers every night. 'Yes, sir.' the boy replied.

"'And, do you always say them in the morning, too?' the pastor asked.

"'No sir,' the boy replied. 'I ain't scared in the daytime.'"


• • •


"When little Kelli said her bedtime prayers, she would bless every family member, every friend and every animal (current and past). For several weeks, after the nightly prayer, Kelli would add, 'And all girls.'

"This soon became part of her nightly routine, to include this closing. Finally her mother's curiosity got the best of her and she asked, 'Kelli, why do you always add the part about all girls?'

"Her response: 'Because everybody always finish their prayers by saying "All Men"!'"


• • •


"Little Johnny and his family were having Sunday dinner at his grandmother's house. Everyone was seated around the table as the food was being served. When Johnny received his plate, he started eating right away. 'Johnny! Please wait until we say our prayer,' said his mother.

"'I don't need to,' the boy replied.

"'Of course, you do,' his mother insisted. 'We always say a prayer before eating at our house.'

"'That's at our house,' Johnny explained. 'But this is Grandma's house and she knows how to cook!'"





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