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Veterans Day, Val-Air, Welcome Back Voice

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Welcome back voice. I’ve missed you.
I decided to blog from home this morning. The boys get more interesting every day and sometimes the blog keeps me from seeing them in the morning. I am lucky to have a flexible work schedule that allows me to come home to see them. It’s worth it to walk in and see their toothy little grins.
To the news…

Veterans Day
If you get the chance to thank a Veteran or current Member of the Armed Services, please do it. It’s not always the most comfortable thing to do but they really appreciate a simple thank you…they sure deserve it.
Services are scheduled today for Noon at Veterans Memorial Auditorium, and 2:30 at Iowa State’s Memorial Union. If you are in Ames and haven’t ever seen the gold star hall, it’s quite a tribute and a reminder that the men and women who are volunteering for service to their country are, many times, just 18 years old. They have so many options in front of them and choose to serve their country. That deserves at least one day full of people saying a random Thank You!
With that in mind you won’t believe this story! Sally found it on NPR this morning. This one you have to hear to believe.

I can’t imagine why anyone would accept the idea that drinking so much that you get sick is the key to any kind of fraternal bond. I am a proud member of a fraternity. I had my share to drink in college. I helped clean the Fraternity house when I was a “pledge”. I also helped the classes that followed mine do the same when I became a member of the house. We were one of the biggest houses on campus, always in the running for intramural sports championships, had higher than average grades and we were very active socially. I continue my friendships with many of the men I met there.
What happened at Drake University is not a reflection of fraternity life on college campuses today. More than any time in their history, Greek organizations are realizing you can have everything that makes fraternity life great and not put anyone’s life in danger. There are responsible houses on every College campus. I’d like to think they make up the majority of fraternities and sororities. Greek life is not for everyone, and it is in no way a requirement to find a meaningful and fulfilling college experience.
I would offer this one piece of advice to college students and their parents. Make a deal with your kids. Join a fraternity if you like, but before you go in, set some limits with yourself. Make sure you have it clear in you mind what you re and are not willing to do to be a part of a social organization. I did. I told myself no one was ever going to hit me, force me to drink or make me risk my well being. I went though three and a half years and none of that happened…not once.
Fraternities and Sororities can be great places to make lifelong friendships but no experience, no friendship is worth putting yourself in danger. In fact if they really are worth joining, no one in that organization would ever risk your life.

What will boycotting West Des Moines businesses do to incet the Val-Air to quiet down? With due respect to my Waterbury neighbors, I don’t think it’s fair or particularly effective. I also hear the thump of the bass every time Val-Air has a late night concert. My kids are getting up at Six whether Cheap Trick or White Lion or Some Culture Club tribute band decides to pump up the volume at Val-Air. So, I too, would like Val-Air management to pad the walls. I don’t think punishing the local hardware store is going to help.

My new favorite show is back tonight and the Chicago Tribune has some good things to say abut this latest episode.

Healthy Ice Cream?
So says a report on MSNBC. Ahhhh we can dream.

Hope you all have a good day. Sal just put the boys down for their morning nap. I think I should do the same.

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