Colin Bell: Reluctant Hero – Book Review

Colin Bell: Reluctant Hero – Book Review

‘In time, Colin will be among the all-time greats who have ever played in this country’ That is what Manchester Citys Assistant Manager, Malcolm Allison said of King Colin when asked. Of course we had already signed the young lad from Bury at the time of this quote. Had you asked him before Bell had signed the paperwork his answer would have been more like this “can’t head it, can’t pass it, he’s hopeless”(Both quotes taken from ‘The Worst Of Friends’ by Colin Schindler).

Of course the latter was an attempt to put off fellow clubs who were interested in signing Colin while he and Joe fought with the City board to release the funds. For 45,000 pounds Colin Bell turned out to be, and arguably still is, the best money City spent. Certainly fans who saw ‘Nijinsky’ play would confirm that all the stories of him were true. He was a shy guy who had the stamina of a middle distance runner and the skills needed to help City reach and compete with the top clubs in Europe.

He could have so easily have gone to Arsenal but fortunately for City fans their manager, Ex England star Billy Wright didn’t see in Bell what our Big Mal saw. Bell went for trials with the North London club before being rejected and told that they hoped he found a side whose standards were not as high as Arsenals. Four years later Colin was flying high in sky blue.

In his debut game, on this day in 1966, Bell scored in an away win against Derby County (even though he may not have known much about it) as Mercer, Allison and now Bell were finally moving City in the right direction, with Bells goal at Rotherham actually securing the promotion.

Colin Bell would go on to become arguably City’s key player and turned out in the sky blue of City just under 500 times, scoring 153 goals. Only two players have scored more for the club, and who knows how many more he could have scored if not for that horrific injury in a 4-0 League Cup win against United with a ‘mistimed’ tackle from Buchan. The levels of fitness that Bell had kept up meant that had the injury not occurred he could have continued for at least another five or six years longer than it did.

He did come back as a substitute against Newcastle on Boxing Day 1977, just over two years after the initial injury but he never returned to his best and would only get 17 games under his belt before eventually being forced into retirement. His comeback though did lift the club who went on a seven game winning streak and he did manage two goals. His last goal however came in Europe in a tie against FC Twente in September 1978 at Maine Road, which fittingly was also the venue for his last League game for City although this time it was a loss against Aston Villa.

Colin Bell later continued his service with City by working with the youth team, but left before returning during the 1990s as the club’s first ambassador. Then when Francis Lee took control of the club there was a falling out and Bell left. Fortunately Bell came back and now acts as a club ambassador and can be seen around the ground on matchday.

When moving to the new stadium in 2003 City fans were polled as to what to call one of the stands, Colin Bell won the poll and now while at the Etihad you will see the Colin Bell Stand. No other section has been given a players name and to date only Joe Mercer has had a similar section around the ground named after him and so on Matchday now you can walk down ‘Joe Mercer Way’ and take your seat in the ‘Colin Bell Stand’ and watch the mighty City.

Biography and Mystery

Biography and Mystery

How can one person ever know another’s heart, especially long after she’s dead? Emily Dickinson’s a mystery, and so are her poems, and because she devoted her life to them, she and her poems are almost inseparable.

When I write my book, I want to spend a few pages talking about biography. It’s all conjecture, no matter how much “evidence” we may find. How close is the “I” in the poems to ED herself? It’s bound to be a continuum, and because she definitely had a flair for the dramatic (those white dresses!), what seems to be ED herself could still be an exaggeration, especially in the more forceful poems.

And then there are the letters, which are by their nature at least partly a performance, since when we write letters to other people, we want to hold their attention. And since her letters became her primary way of talking to people, and since she was a poet, we have to expect them to be more than everyday correspondence.

Plus there’s the character of the biographer. I’m not the first to claim that all writing is in some way autobiographical, so when someone writes a biography, we have to expect to find at least as much of her in the book as the subject. No two people interpret any encounter in the exact same way, so when you’re dealing with the life of another person, you can be sure that no two biographers will interpret that in the same way, not even close.

One of the reasons I decided to write my book for kids twelve and up is because I can talk about matters that become assumptions for adults. I can discuss the difference between primary and secondary sources, the effects of literary executors and editors on the writing, and–especially–the need for us readers to keep enough of a distance to be able to form our own judgments.

Best Free Web Browsers for Your Children Online

Best Free Web Browsers for Your Children Online

As a parent we want to give our children the opportunity to play games on the internet. There are many educational games, and ones that spur the imagination. Of course our first priority is to be sure while they are having fun they are safe. Here are some web browsers that you can download for free, they can play the games and you will be able to monitor them.

Both my elementary school age daughters love to play the games on the kids web browser. It was first brought to my attention by one of her teachers. It is free and easy to download, it is also super easy for my four year old to navigate through safely on her own. It features two and a half million different internet websites, videos and games that are approved by teachers and parents alike.

It is designed for children ages 3 to 12, there are even resources available on it for your child to get help with their homework. Once you are signed up parents get a weekly email that tells you where and what your children are doing on Kidzui. It comes with a parental account where you can control even more safety settings. The site is sponsored by Comcast, another great feature is that is has no chat rooms, texting or anything similar. You will see on their website they have receive positive press from: The Today Show, CNN, USA Today, The New York Post and even The Wall Street Journal.?

This award winning browser for children is very cute and appealing for your kids, but also has all the features parents want to keep them safe while on the internet. This internet browser is 100% free to download, and also free of spy ware, ad ware, hacker safe and has a pop up blocker. It has been featured by: USA Today, C/Net, ABC News, The Wall Street Journal, U.S. New, The New York Times and CNN.

Made for children ages 4 to 14, this browser is colorful, fun, engaging and easy for them to use. It has user friendly parent controls, flash games for children to improve their learning and rewards for children to encourage their learning. Parents have options of limiting time use online, receiving parental reports and locking controls.?

Many parents remember McGruff the crime dog fro school when we were young, teaching us about all kinds of safety. With help from “The National Crime Prevention Council” and “The Children’s Educational Network” they launched “The McGruff Kid Safe Internet Browser For Kids”. This free web browser for children allows them to surf safe approved internet websites and play games. With over 10,000 websites available with just one click they will have access to all kinds of educational and cool games.

As a parent you have the freedom to create separate accounts for each child in your family, with custom age appropriate content. You are also able to choose from different themes for boys and girls. You will also be able to ban certain words, change passwords as you see needed and ban or add websites that you want your child to have access to. You will also receive a free trial to “Club Tuki – The Ultimate Kids Internet”, the first Internet Safety Education Arcade. Where children not only get to watch Tuki television, which shows clean, appropriate entertaining television. And as they play the games they have the opportunity to earn Tuki moola for their online bank account, to help them learn about finance and money responsibilities.

Print Coupons to Save Money Every Week

Print Coupons to Save Money Every Week

In this article you will learn how I save money with coupons. I will tell you the places I go to the most often to do this.

There are many websites that say they have coupons and coupon codes that you can load onto your card. I only trust a handful of them and here are my most popular ones. is my go to website for the best coupons. Most of the time, they have coupons that will save you $1.00 or more for just one item. They have over 300 coupons listed on any given day. This is my favorite website. I like it when I get a $1.00 off of a food item or even toilet paper. You can even have coupons loaded onto your smart phone with them. I myself like to download and print the coupons out. They also have coupon codes for stores such as Home Depot and Best Buy.

Another website that I like is called The Krazy Coupon Lady. They have many coupons on this website. This is a little different as theirs is a compilation of coupons from several different websites. You click on the one you want and it takes you to whatever website the coupon is on. You can join this website and create an account and they will email you with daily deals. They also have links to many popular stores, such as Dollar General and Walmart.

Smart source is another option. You can sign up with them and get coupon alerts sent to your email. You then click on the more coupons button and it takes you right to their site.

Target also has some great coupons right on their website. You can print them out and take them into the store. They always have ones for food, clothes, or other items for your house. They have a wide variety of coupons on their site.

Another option that I like is the All You magazine. It comes out once a month and it has coupons for food and other items in it every time. Usually this magazine has great coupons along with articles on how to save money on almost anything. So however you want to do it, to pay less, start clipping or printing today!

Finding the Perfect Coffee Grinder

Finding the Perfect Coffee Grinder

New-fangled electric coffee grinders are a popular toy of coffee connoisseurs. You’ll find a tremendous selection of coffee grinders on the market, and you can pay quite a bit of money for one. I have a small electric Braun that was a gift, and it does an ok job. I’ve never felt like I had much success with electric coffee grinders, because they tend to make powder when I use them. Either that, or they leave chunks of coffee beans unground. I really don’t like electric appliances much, and I guess it shows.

I have a small collection of hand crank coffee grinders. They are all box, or lap type grinders. One is not antique, and I thought I’d use it and preserve the old ones for posterity. Wouldn’t you know…the replica coffee grinder is the one that is fragile and sits unused.

My favorite coffee grinder is one of my great-grandmother’s from 1890, the year she was married. I don’t use it every day, but when it starts looking lonely on the shelf, I get it down and give it a little TLC. Half of the cast iron cover for the hopper is missing, and the wooden top is cracked under the crank handle, but the cast iron grinding assembly is perfect and it works very well. It is adjustable, so you can set the coarseness of the grind by simply turning a wing nut. The capacity is a little greater than the other coffee grinders I have, so it turns out a large amount of coffee in a short time. It takes less than two minutes to grind enough coffee by hand to make a pot.

There’s something about grinding coffee by hand that is both invigorating and calming. Part of it is the aroma. It starts out faint, and becomes more robust the longer you grind. Part of it is just using a mechanically wonderful gizmo that was so well designed there isn’t much about it that you could improve upon.

Using a hand cranked coffee grinder is fun. You just pour roasted beans into the open hopper, and start cranking. Some coffee grinders have a little drawer that the ground coffee drops into. My favorite grinder has a nifty little door that opens. The door has a little “shelf” that swings out with it, and it holds a round wood-and-tin cup that contains the ground coffee, so it’s easy to carry it to the coffeepot.

Besides the box type grinders, a number of other styles of hand coffee grinders were made. Some are wall mounted. They often have a hopper with a lid that holds a pound or two of beans, and a collection cup (glass) usually held in place by a little spring-loaded clamp. Many of the wall mounts have glass hoppers as well. Not only could you see at a glance when the coffee supply was low, but the entire hopper could be removed for a good cleaning.

There were also table mount coffee grinders that had screw clamps to hold them to the edge of a table or a countertop. These were usually smaller, since they were stored in a drawer or cupboard when not in use. They are about the size of one of those little meat grinders you can still buy. They became popular in the early 1900s, and were used regularly until after WW II when marketers began pushing ground coffee in cans.

Then there are the upright coffee grinders, the kind with a hand wheel on one or both sides that were commonplace in general stores. This design was made in several sizes, including cute little home kitchen versions. Collectors love the small versions.

Although coffee grinders have been made for centuries, most of the ones you see as antiques are from the mid-19th through the mid 20th century.

Personal experience

Pray for Our Military and Our Allies

Pray for Our Military and Our Allies

Readers, the world needs to pray
for our service men, women, allies risking their lives every day.
Many are young and just out of high school
tramping the foreign battlefields to protect me and you.

They don’t have time to get a good nights rest
or sit in the pews at their churches to feel blessed.
They sleep in their dug outs…get a wink or maybe a few
no time to enjoy a walk through the mornings dew.

They eat their meals when they can sneak a bite
never know what kind of actions they’ll have to fight.
They don’t have the luxury of a good warm bath
nor get to walk with their families down a wooded path.

Can you imagine the lonely days and nights they have
when I think about it, it makes me…hurt and feel sad?
Readers, remember to pray for our brave women and men
who stand their watch, fight, and hoping they’ll soon win.

We need to pray for God to bless, protect, each and everyone of them
while they’re fighting hard…a war that’s difficult to see an end.
Pray God keeps them safe…brings them back to their homeland
we’ll open our arms to welcome them back, give thanks to the “Great I Am.”

Great, Funny & Useful Websites for Bridesmaids

Are you a bridesmaid? Are you going to be one very soon? Being a bridesmaid is a lot of fun – but it is also a lot of responsibility. Every bride really wants their day to be perfect. And planning a wedding has lots of little details. A bride typically asks her bridesmaids and Maid of Honor for help with various things in planning her wedding. Traditionally the Maid of Honor and bridesmaids plan a bridal shower, and sometimes also a bachelorette party.

Many women have walked in your satin dyed-to-match pumps before you. Fortunately they have sage and funny advice to offer you that will help with your bridesmaid's duties. Here are some great websites that every bridesmaid should consider visiting before putting on that great dress, you know, the one that you'll be able to wear again – at least the bride said so…. hey, they always say so!

Bridesmaid Aid

This website was created by two friends, Ellen Horowitz and Joanna Dreifus who have attended nearly thirty weddings and have been bridesmaids countless times. They created the website as a resource for fellow bridesmaids with lots of tips on how to be a great bridesmaid, but also a place where you could have a good laugh.

Ugly Dress

There is truly nothing like an ugly bridesmaid dress. Many bridesmaids have endured a bridesmaids dress that wasn't their taste, and some have worn a dress that was truly horrific. This website is for the truly tacky, the totally horrible. If you are preparing to wear an ugly dress at a wedding, or you are looking at bridesmaids dresses, you will no doubt laugh out loud at this great website.

Blissweddings, Bridal Showers section

The Bridal Showers section of has lots of great games that you can plan for people to play at the bridal shower. It also has ideas for a Jack and Jill (co-ed) wedding shower. There are more than eighty bridal shower themes given. You can also find poems to use for the bridal shower at this website. Great for Maid of Honor and fellow bridesmaids planning the bridal shower.

A Bridal Shower

This website has lots of great ideas for planning a bridal shower. There is information on bridal shower games, favors, food, themes, centerpieces, invitations, gifts, party ideas, decorations, and even clip art that you can use on the invitations. This website has so many great tips that you can use to plan a bridal shower.

Bachelorette Party Tips

This website is for planning either a bachelorette or a bachelor party. You'll find lots of great party planning tips for planning a bachelorette party. The website is written using the male pronoun however, so simple substitute all of the "he's" with a "she". The tips are great, but they should have built a different website for bachelorettes.

Making the Most of Your Military Training

So now your time in the service is winding down and you're probably looking forward to greener pastures (or fair winds and following seas). Regardless of how much planning you are putting into your upcoming separation or retirement, there is probably just that slight nagging sensation in the back of your head that pops up with the thought:

"What am I going to do for a job?"

Indeed, it is a pretty hefty concern. After all, a few years of intense training, long hours and hard work and you've gotten pretty good at your job. What if you can't find a similar job that pays around the same when you come home? Worse yet, what if there is no employment for a person with your training outside of the military? Fear not, you are treading where thousands of fellow veterans have trod over the centuries. Many problems can be avoided simply by realizing what exactly you have in terms of marketable skills.

Licenses, Permits, Certifications

So you were a Paramedic in the service with 6 years of experience. You could probably keep up with an Emergency Room physician if put to the test. However, be aware that military paramedic training does not necessarily carry over to the civilian world. You'll need to check with your state as to specific requirements for certification of EMT's and Paramedics to see if any of your training does, in fact, carry over. Otherwise, you may need to enroll in a civilian training program to be eligible to obtain a necessary license.

Always check into requirements in your state before you assume that you have a "guaranteed" job back home. The fact is, hospitals and ambulance companies may be dying to hire the person I just described because of his/her experience and qualifications, but without that license, they are out of luck.

But everyone else is OK, right? Only the former Medics and Corpsmen have to worry about licenses? Sorry, friend. This will also become an issue if you held a position like Barber, Electrician, Plumber or Military Police in the military. Check with your state's appropriate licensing boards.

My Military Training Doesn't Count!

So you've checked with your state and they don't accept your military training for the purposes of obtaining a license. Here you have a few options as you move forward.

  1. Find another career. If you are getting out at age 22 or 23 and intend to go back to college, this isn't the greatest tragedy. Likewise, if you really didn't care for your career and always wanted to be something else (Butcher, Baker, Candlestick maker etc.) now is the perfect opportunity to go back to school and transition into a completely new career field. Aside from college and Vocational Technical Programs, consider union apprenticeships as well.
  2. Suck it up and swallow your pride. So you were a Master Electrician in the Navy, a purveyor of plumbing expertise in the Army or the best darn medic in the whole Air Force. Now that you are home your state says you have to go to a school approved by them before you can even consider getting a job in the field you have excelled in. While this requires a great deal of humility, keep in mind that this might also be a blessing in disguise. Things went differently in the military, and now you are bound by state and local regulations which you may be completely unaware of. Additional training could help you hone your skills and become even more proficient in your trade.

Other Professions

So the medic gets out and becomes a paramedic, the dental hygienist gets out and becomes a dental hygienist, where does that leave the Deck Seaman, the Infantryman or the Combat Engineer? Welcome to a crossroads in your life. You will find now that there is no direct career path if you worked in a combat arms position or simply held a job that was very much service specific (in the case of the deck seaman). First, one must consider what skills they have acquired.

Management and Supervisory Positions

The Military called you an E-4 Supply Clerk who was responsible for ordering new materials. Put that on your resume and you can assure yourself more time collecting unemployment. Translated into civilian jargon, you were a Purchasing Agent.

As a recently appointed E-5, you supervised five forklift operators and a few inventory specialists in an ammo depot. Unless you are applying for a Government Service job at an ammo depot, you'd be wise to sell yourself to prospective employers as a Warehouse Supervisor.

Generally those in paygrades E-4 and above at least have a fair claim for management and supervisory positions provided they actually supervised people. Remember, however, that you no longer carry the authority of an NCO or Petty Officer. Employees are not bound by federal law to listen to what you have to say, and now cursing at employees is a great way to find yourself unemployed again.

Non-Traditional Options

So, the Army sent you to HALO (High Altitude-Low Opening) Freefall school. Ever consider becoming a skydiving instructor?

The Navy had you work in the Criminal Investigative Division. Ever think about a career as a Private Investigator?

You spent years working in the Personnel Office. You'd probably be a real asset to a Staffing Agency.

So you were a Master Diver? Consider donning the scuba gear once more, on the outside, people pay big money for that stuff.

In Conclusion..

No one is guaranteed a high paying job with an expense account. There are jobs out there, however, and you are just as qualified (if not more) than your civilian counterparts. Don't bore prospective employers with sea stories filled with jargon and curse words. Show employers that you have a lot to offer their company but are also willing to learn. Best of luck in the job search.

How to Save Money by Using Coupons, Without the Beginners Mistakes

Well first things first, before you can use coupons you have to find coupons. There are many ways to get coupons; coupons can be found on food packages, most Sunday newspapers, Wal-Mart's "All You magazine" (sold only at Wal-Mart), and coupon clipping websites. As you begin to collect your coupons keep in mind that you won't just walk out of the store with a cart load of free items on your first shopping trip. There is a system to getting the most out of your coupons, and it also takes time.

Beginner Mistake #1Print any and all coupons you can find online. In my experience this was a huge mistake, you most likely are not going to use all of these coupons. And when you are ready to use them they will be expired. 90% of online printed coupons expire within two weeks of printing; so this will be a problem when you looking to use that great coupon with a killer store sale.

Beginner Mistake #2- Use a coupon as soon as you get it. This is fine if you are just looking to save a few dollars here and there; after all don't we want to use coupons to help us save? That is true however, if your goal is to save as much as possible hold onto your coupons. Example: you have a $1.00 off coupon for glade air freshener, but glade this week is not on sale and is priced at $2.99. Let me start by saying most coupons from the Sunday papers expire about 3-12 weeks and on some occasions if the discount is a really high value coupon for maybe $5.00 or $10.00 it may expire in a week. Now with that being said you may say okay $1.99 is not a bad price, but many times these items go on sale for about $1.00 so this could be a free item!

Beginner Mistake #3- Wait for the store flyer to learn what is on sale. With the internet things are now more advanced, so now you could just type CVS scan with the upcoming week or whatever store you like. This makes it a little easier when you are trying to decide should I use that coupon this week, or is it priced better next week. Most time you can even see the weekly sales ads two weeks in advance.

You can get started on your coupon collection by purchasing Sunday papers that have coupons. (When I first started couponing the advice I was given was to purchase one paper per person in your household). You can also print coupons from your home; and best of all there are websites that clip coupons and mail them to you for a small clipping fee, or they will send you the whole inserts. A few sites that I use and like are,, and

Now that you have your coupons, you will need to check sale papers for your local stores. Pair those sale items with coupons that you have, this is how you will get your items free or at a very low price. If you don't have time to search all of you coupons, there are site that will do this for you for free. You can find these sites by typing in the search box CVS matchups 5/20/2012 whatever store you like. Some stores will allow you to use overage from higher priced coupons to be applied towards things that you won't normally have coupons for. These could be things like meat, produce, and so on. Some stores like ShopRite and Pathmark offer a coupon for a certain dollar amount off of your next shopping order, when you buy certain items. So it is good to keep eye out for these types of deals.

I know that all of this sounds simple because it somewhat is; but it takes time to organize your coupons, compare store sale prices, and make a detailed list. But the most important thing that you must do is find out the coupon policy for each store that you shop at. This is usually available on the stores website, or you can send an email from the websites contact us tab and request the policy to be sent to you. This is important because some stores only allow you to use a certain amount of the same coupons per order, some will not double coupons, etc. It is also very important in to check to see if the store has changed their coupon policy, because they will not give you notice that their coupon policy has changed. Unfortunately this is something they won't tell you until you are trying to use coupons according to the stores old coupon policy.

Another thing to watch out for is stores that are now changing their coupon policies after a popular show, extreme couponing aired. Coupon manufacturers are also cracking down on how coupons can be used, and in what quantities. Many stores are no longer offering overage on coupons. Example: if a product goes on sale for three dollars and you have a coupon for five dollars off that same item, many stores will no longer give you the two dollars change. Nor will they allow you to use the overage for you to apply to other items that you do not have coupons for. What they will do is adjust the coupon amount down to the price of the item, and you will still be responsible for taxes on that item.

However there are some ways around these coupon changes. The most important thing is, as I mentioned before, know your stores current coupon policy and check for updates often. Another thing to consider is possibly changing where you normally shop; going to different stores may be the way to get the best possible deals. It also helps to be open to new brands, products, ideas. Because usually as new products come out, coupons for these products are often put out to promote them.

I hope that the tips that I have shared are a help to you, and help you get started on the road to successful couponing and great savings. As always happy couponing.

Banned Books and Ersatz Englishmen

Banned Books and Ersatz Englishmen

When I was nine years old, I was taken to see the brand new movie version of “West Side Story” — and was wowed. Not since Disney’s “Sleeping Beauty” had I come home so full of the story and music of a film. (I had driven my cousins, Frankie and Paulie, whose house backed ours, crazy by endlessly singing “I… know… you… I walked with you once… upon… a dream….”) Naturally I asked my parents for the book, and naturally they bought it for me.

It was a book of the screenplay — something not commonly seen in the early ’60s. I read it the way I usually read books back then in the days when my eyes were young: I devoured it and then I devoured it again. I don’t remember which reading I was on when Paulie, the older cousin, wandered in and saw me so engaged.

“Your mom lets you read that?” he asked, not impertinently; he truly wondered whether a child should be reading what he considered adult material. (I think he was 12 at the time; that was practically a grownup.)

I was flabbergasted by his question. It wasn’t that I felt my reading ability or maturity were being challenged; I simply never had heard of someone’s not being ALLOWED to read something! The very concept was mind-boggling to me then, and it still is, today.

What did not boggle but merely tickled my mind about having Frankie and Paulie as neighbors as well as cousins was Paulie’s rather peculiar habit of passing away on a regular basis. My sister and I would pad across the two yards to visit Frankie and Paulie, only to discover Frankie in mourning. Paulie, it seems, had contracted some nameless but swiftly deadly disease and had hula-hooped off this mortal coil. By amazing coincidence, Paulie’s distant twin brother had arrived from England to take his place.

I can’t speak for my sister but although these devilish cousinfolk didn’t fool me for an instant, Frankie-as-mourner was so convincing, and Paulie-as-English-brother was so charming and his accent so exotic, that I just had to go along with the game in order to enjoy the entertainment.

In defiance of all medical convention, not to mention the laws of physics, cousin Paulie himself always managed to resurrect himself some time later that same day, and by some miracle all extra siblings had been exorcised.

I still have my class photo from the fifth grade and I am the only child in it; everyone else looks exactly as I remember them, and since they were (and are) my peers, they look like people-my-age, which is 47 at the moment. They don’t look 47, but they look my age. (Don’t try to figure it out mathematically; that’s not the way it makes sense.) I, in the photo, am nine years old. Since I am no longer nine years old, I, in the photo, am a child. Those other nine-year-olds in the photo are MY age.

I don’t have any photos of Frankie and Paulie (or the English twin). Never having seen them as grownups, I remember them as being MY age, so they are, in my memory, adults.

See what comes of reading grownup stuff too early? You start thinking you ARE one.