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Thoughts from the Publisher

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by Neena Strichart

Today we present to you, our loyal readers, a 24-page special section on the 2012 Olympic Summer Games as an insert in today’s edition. Putting together this feature was a labor of love for me. I thoroughly enjoyed gathering the editorial portions, arranging for the puzzle pages, taking some of the photos, assigning stories and selling the advertising. Now don’t get me wrong— I am certainly not claiming the section as a one-woman-show. Everyone in our office had a hand in the project, and I thank them all from the bottom of my heart.
I hope you enjoy the read and do plan to hang on to it for a few weeks. The television listings are sure to come in handy!
With the special section behind me, I am taking a break today from my usual witty “Thoughts from the Publisher” writings, and instead am cheating by reprinting a message I received from a fellow Signal Hill Chamber of Commerce member. I’m sure that she is not the original author of the piece below, but I sure thank her for sharing it with me/us.

50th College Class Reunion
I had prepared for it like any intelligent woman would. I went on a starvation diet the day before, knowing that all the extra weight would just melt off in 24 hours, leaving me with my sleek, trim, high-school-girl body. The last 40 years of careful cellulite collection would just be gone with a snap of my fingers. I just knew if I didn’t eat a morsel on Friday, I could probably fit into my senior formal on Saturday. Trotting up to the attic, I zipped open a garment bag, pulled out an evening gown I’d worn back in my college days, carried it lovingly downstairs, ran my hand over the fabric and hung it on the door.
Bravely, I took the gown off the hanger, unfastened the shimmering dress and stepped gingerly into it. I struggled, twisted, turned, and pulled…I got the formal all the way up to my knees before the zipper gave out. I was disappointed. I so wanted to wear that dress with those silver sandals again and dance the night away. Okay, one setback was not going to spoil my mood for this affair. No way! Rolling the dress into a ball and tossing it into the corner, I turned to Plan B…my black crepe caftan.
Next I gathered up all the goodies that I had purchased for the event: the scented shower gel, the roll-on facial hair remover and exfoliator, the body-building and highlighting shampoo and conditioner, the split-end repairer and shine enhancer. Soon my hair would look like that girl’s in the Pantene ads and my face would be smooth as a baby’s butt. I then lined up the makeup on the bathroom vanity…the under eye “ain’t no lines here” firming cream, the all-day face-lifting gravity-fighting moisturizer with wrinkle-filler spackle, the “all day kiss me till my lips bleed and see if this gloss will come off” lipstick, and the bronzing face powder for that special glow.
Okay, time to get ready! I jumped into the steaming shower, soaped, lathered, rinsed, shaved, tweezed, buffed, scrubbed and scoured my body to a tingling pink. I plastered my freshly scrubbed face with the anti-wrinkle, gravity-fighting “your face will look like a baby’s posterior” face cream. I set my hair on hot rollers.
I felt wonderful…ready to take on the world. Or in this instance, my underwear. With the towel firmly wrapped around my glistening body, I pulled out the black lace, tummy-tucking, cellulite-pushing, hamhock-rounding girdle, and the matching “lift those bosoms like they’re filled with helium” bra. I greased my body with the scented body lotion and began the plunge into these foundation garments. I pulled, stretched, tugged, hiked, folded, tucked, twisted, shimmied, hopped, pushed, wiggled, snapped, shook, caterpillar crawled and kicked. Sweat poured off my forehead but I was done. And it didn’t look bad.
So I rested.  A well-deserved rest, too. The girdle was on my body. Bounce a quarter off my behind? It was tighter than a trampoline! Can you say, “Rubber baby-buggy bumper buns?” Okay, so I had to take baby steps, and walk sideways, and I couldn’t move from my buns to my knees, but I was firm!
Oh, no…I had to go to the bathroom! And there wasn’t a snap crotch. From now on, I vowed, my undies have got to have a snap crotch. I was ready to rip it open and re-stitch the crotch with Velcro, but the pain factor from past experiments was still fresh in my mind. I quickly sidestepped to the bathroom and struggled out of the girdle.
An hour later, I had answered nature’s call and repeated the struggle into the girdle. I was ready for the bra. I remembered what the saleslady said to do. I could see her glossed lips mouthing, “Do not fasten the bra in the front and twist it around. Put the bra on the way it should be worn— straps over the shoulders— then bend over and gently place both breasts inside the cups.”  Easy if you have four hands. I put my arms into the holsters, bent over and pulled the bra down, but the boobs weren’t cooperating. I’d no sooner tuck one in a cup, and while working on the other, the first would slip out. I needed a strategy. I bounced up and down a few times, trying to dribble them in with short bunny hops, but that didn’t work. So, while bent over, I began rocking gently back and forth on my heel and toes and I set ’em to swinging. Finally, on the fourth swing, pause, and lift, I captured the gliding glands. Quickly fastening the back of the bra, I stood up for examination.  Back straight, slightly arched, I turned and faced the mirror, turning from side to side.  I smiled…yes, Houston, we have lift-up! My breasts were high, firm, and there was cleavage! I was happy until I tried to look down only to find I now had a chin rest, and I couldn’t see my feet. 
I then realized that I had forgotten to put on my pantyhose and now had to pee again. While in the bathroom, I thought about the buckles on those silver sandals. So I put on my sweats, fixed myself a drink, ordered pizza, and skipped the high-school reunion.

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Thoughts from the Publisher