Out-Of-Sight News and Views

Issue #13
January 1, 2014

In This Issue

Greetings from Our President
Word on the Street
Guess Who Took another Trip around the Sun
Our Out-Of-Sight Superstar
Bookshelf -
Why We Sing Auld Lang Syne on New Years Eve
Gift Giving Ideas
Blind man says dog saved his life after he fell onto NYC subway tracks
Sprint Introduces Kona
Safeway Announces Website Accessibility and Usability Enhancements to its On-line Grocery Delivery Website
Protecting the eyes and vision of astronauts
And Survey says
The Recipe Box -
Dear Betty Blunt
Think Tank
Words to Live By
A Round of Applause
Oosabelle’s List
What is happening on Out-Of-Sight

Greetings from Our President

Happy New Year to Everyone,
Here we are at the beginning of a new year. Last year is behind us with all of its either failures or triumphs. We can’t change yesterday, but, we are stepping onto a new stage with a new script to be written. We can either allow ourselves to fall into the same old ruts or can forge ahead looking at the dawning of a new day and determined to make changes for the better instead of just making resolutions that will probably never come to pass.

Out Of Sight is approaching its sixth birthday and starting into its seventh year as a place where blinded or visually impaired individuals and their friends can come together to enjoy the company of friends and continue to make new friends from all over the world. Our hope is that this monthly news letter will continue to be a source of pertinent information and interesting articles that will be enjoyed by all of our membership.

And as always, if you want to see anything else included in this type of format, write an email to:

Best regards,
Lee Richards


To navigate quickly to the different articles in this newsletter using JAWS, System Access, or Window Eyes, press the letter H to move through the headings. For MAC users, press Control Option Command plus the letter H.

Word on the Street

Congratulations to Happiness and Chikodinaka who celebrated their 2nd wedding anniversary on December 24th. Way to go!

Got any news for us? We would love to hear what is going on in your world, so please keep us up to date and write to:

We look forward to sharing your news with our extended family, here on Out-Of-Sight!

Guess Who Just Took Another Trip Around the Sun?

Help us celebrate our January birthdays!

January 3, MISS TEE - Teresa Fleenor from Indiana
January 6, Sharlon1 - Don Davis
January 8, the blind optimist - Tali Sarnetzky from Israel
January 10, Thom3of5 - Thom Spittle from South Carolina
January 12, Catt - Trina Casada from Oregon
January 13, Shut Up Delete - Mike Edwards from California
January 15, Sunshine Girl - Sharon Caravan from Canada
January 16, Seeker Joy from Utah
January 17, Tracy - Tracy Spittle from South Carolina
January 19, Bobcat - Robert Bartlett from Texas
January 20, Mister Fixit - Mike Robinson from New York
January 23, DrummerBoy23 - Rishi DeMac from Trinidad and Tobago
January 26, Kathy - Kathy Chevalier from Iowa
January 31, Wesley B - Wesley Burden from New Jersey

Please help us build our birthday list, by sending your Username, first and last name, date of birth, (year optional), and where you live, to:

Our Out-Of-Sight Superstar

By Roger Khouri

Each month, the Out of Sight board receives nominations as to who can be honoured as the Member of the Month. Even if your nominee is not selected, please submit their name again for the next month, and who knows, they could end up being selected.

We are blessed with such great members of this online community that choosing just one member is quite a challenging task. It could be one who does a lot for the site, or it could be one who is a great person, or it could be an all around nice guy or gal. However little or a lot they may be seen or not seen doing, our Shining Superstar is a person who has made a difference in the life of our site.

Our outgoing Member of the month that closed off 2013 for the month of December is Atlantas princess, Kaye Zimpher. It is a tough job in taking off the crown and polishing it up for the next honouree, but, Kaye has assured me that it is spick and span and the crown is ready and waiting for the next honouree.

So, without further adue, I am pleased to introduce to you the first Member of the Month for 2014 for the month of January. It is our beloved James Ashley. He goes by Maestro on the site. Here is a bit about this fun and crazy character who I had the pleasure of interviewing for this article.

Jim was born in 1947 in boasts 66 years young. He has a darling wife Rita and they have been married for 32 years. They have two kids, ages 43 and 40, and 9 grand kids ages 2 to 24. As a life long member of the Seventh Adventist Church, Jim has been active in the church and the community. He was a church elder for the past 10 years. Also, he volunteered for several years at Pathfinders camp for kids and served as its director for one year.

For 32 years, Jim drove truck for a living. Any size, any load, any route, he drove and hauled it. He got his first motor bike in high school and if he had one dollar for every Honda he had, he would be a multi-millionaire. Back in the day, he enjoyed hanging out on Saturday nights roller skating with friends.

He began playing piano in grade 8 an dthen guitar in high school. He wrote and performed his own songs, mainly church songs. You can hear Jim each Saturday night in the On Stage event on our site where his heavenly voice can be heard singing songs. He mainly now records karayoke tracks and plays them in On Stage.

Since near the beginning of its founding, Jim has been a member of Out of Sight and has remained a regular visitor and participant on the site. He is a devoted and addicted Zilch player. Whenever you drop into a zilch game, you can count on Jim being the clown of the game, often making fun of whomever is in the leed. He is a great sport because not only does he dish it out, but, he also takes it like a man when others tease him. Jumbo Jimbo definitely has a big heart and thick skin. More often then not, Jim is sitting back, keeping the zilch bench warm, as he sips on is diet doctor pepper drink. When I began doing zilch on the site, Jim had all of us cracking up with his fun and whit, often being the reverant Monsignor who called upon the great dice roller in the heavens for good luck for all the players.

Make no mistake, once called upon, the Vatican trained Monsignor offers the blessings and stands back because there is no telling what will happen after he says his prayer. Sometimes he does it in english, and other times, it is in a made up language that even Jim does not know what he is saying. Nonetheless, it makes for great fun and truck loads of laughs. Oh, did I just say truck loads of laughs? LOL, yes I did, and that pun was intended because Jim drove truck for a living. Yes, he is still available for your guidance in any zilch game through his humour and silliness. He feels that Having fun is paramount, not winning or losing. Apart from zilch, Jim pokes his head into other games from time to time, but, he enjoys spending each night in one of the chat rooms talking it up and seeing how things are with everyone in their respective areas of the world. He spends a lot of time collecting and sharing his music collection with all.

In 2001, he became blind as a result of Glaucoma and Diabetic Retinopathy. The Braille Institute aided him in coping and learning how to do things as a blind person. The major challenge for Jim to overcome as a blind person was not being able to drive. It was a huge adjustment because Jim just could not simply get up and go where ever he liked. He felt that he was the best driver there is and that he should be doing the driving. So, needless to say, not being behind the wheel and having to trust other drivers was a tough thing for Jim to grapple with, yet, he was able to swallow his pride and accept it and move on.

During the month of January, he will be attending the Braille Institute to learn more about computers and technology. His lessons will focus on the internet, using Bard, and operating the Victor Stream. I am sure that his whitty comments will keep his instructors and classmates giggling throughout the month. We wish Jim much success at the Braile Institute and with all his endeavours.

Congradulations Jimbo! It is our pleasure to honour you as our Shining Superstar for the whole month of January!

The Book Shelf -

Do you love to curl up with a good book? Been meaning to read that best seller? Here are two of our book club selections. They are to be read for our next book club meeting, which will be held, Friday, January 17, at 8:00 PM eastern, in the Library. See you there!

Book #1
"I heard you paint houses": Frank "the Irishman" Sheeran and the inside story of the Mafia, the Teamsters, and the last ride of Jimmy Hoffa
by Charles Brandt. Reading time: 9 hours, 49 minutes.
Read by Steven Carpenter.
True Crime

Description: Former prosecutor profiles quote The Irishman, end quote the late mob enforcer who claimed he killed Teamsters president Jimmy Hoffa in 1975. Quotes Sheeran on his role in organized crime and on what transpired the night Hoffa disappeared. Strong language, some descriptions of sex, and some violence. 2004.

Book #2
Never go back: a Jack Reacher novel
by Lee Child. Reading time: 13 hours, 43 minutes.
Read by Jim Zeiger.
Subjects: Suspense Fiction ; Bestsellers
Series: Jack Reacher novel volume: 18

Description: While stopping by his former army office to finally meet the appealing commanding officer Susan Turner, Reacher is accused of committing murder sixteen years ago--and of fathering a child. Turner is also being framed, and the two go on the run. Violence and strong language. Bestseller. 2013.

Why We Sing Auld Lang Syne on New Years Eve

Submitted by Roger Khouri

I recently received this article from a good friend and I wanted to share it with you. Often, we do things out of habit and out of tradition without even remembering or knowing their history or significance. So, this timely article tells you the story about this moving and classic song that is played and sung on each new year celebration. Significantly, the man who you will read about in this article, namely Guy Lombardo, comes from the great city of London Ontario who wrote the book on big band music. Enjoy and Happy New Year to you and your family! Smiles.

Beginning of Article:
This tradition is mostly thanks to Guy Lombardo and the Royal Canadian Band. While their work is largely unknown to those born in the last few decades, the band has sold over 300 million records to date. Guy Lombardo himself has three stars on the Hollywood Walk of Fame, and he was once the Dick Clark of New Years before Clark and his New Years Rocking Eve, attempting to appeal to younger audiences, started supplanting Mr. New Years Eve, Guy Lombardo.

It was in 1929 that Guy Lombardo and his band took the stage at the Roosevelt Hotel in New York City on New Years Eve. Their performance that night was being broadcast on the radio, before midnight Eastern-time on CBS, then after on NBC radio.

At midnight, as a transition between the broadcasts, the song they chose to play was an old Scottish folk song Lombardo had first heard from Scottish immigrants in Ontario. The song was Auld Lang Syne.
Previous to this, there are several documented instances of others singing this song on New Years Eve, going all the way back to the mid-nineteenth century, but it was not anywhere close to the staple it would soon be after Lombardos performance.
The next year, and every year thereafter, all the way to 1976, with Lombardo dying at the age of 75 in 1977, they played it at midnight on New Years Eve at first broadcast out on the radio and later on TV. Thanks to Quote. Mr. New Years Eve, End Quote, and his band, it is still tradition to this day.

Bonus Fact:
It is often said that the song, Auld Lang Syne, was written by famed eighteenth century poet and songwriter, Scotlands Favorite Son -Robert Burns. However, Burns never claimed to have written the song -in fact, quite the opposite. When he submitted it to the Scots Musical Museum, he included a note stating:
Quote. The following song, an old song, of the olden times, and which has never been in print, nor even in manuscript until I took it down from an old mans singing, is enough to recommend any air. End Quote.

The song was first published in 1788, and later a slightly modified version was published in Thomsons Select Songs of Scotland in 1799, three years after Burns death. The title, roughly translated to modern English, literally means, old long since, but more figuratively means, Times Gone By, or, Times Long Past.

It is simply a song about remembering old friends and the times spent with them. Burns set the lyrics to a traditional Scottish ditty called Can Ye Labour Lea.

Gift giving ideas

By: Katie Chandler

These ideas are suitable not just for the holidays, but for year-long gift-giving on any special occasion.

Quick kitchen food gift ideas:
1. Gather up treasured family recipes and copy them into a colorful purchased journal. Or, print them on pretty recipe cards fitted into a categorized recipe box.

2. Purchase candycanes or any interesting-flavored candy sticks. Dip them in melted semi-sweet chocolate and let harden. Wrap in cellophane with bows to be used as coffee or tea stirrers. These are nice tucked into a pretty coffee mug.

3. Purchase several small herb plants and nestle them together in a pretty basket with a favorite recipe card for using each herb.

4. A bottle of wine with an IOU for a home-cooked meal makes a terrific gift for that person constantly on the go.

5. For a nice hostess gift, purchase a small styroFoam cone. Using toothpicks to attach, cover with fresh cranberries.

6. Use whole clove studs interspersed and leftover pine clippings or fresh herbs as a decorative base.

7. Purchase a salt mill or pepper grinder and package with gourmet salt or peppercorns.

8. Line a large, heavy oven mitt with colored cellophane, fill with gourmet jellybeans or nuts, and tie with a bright ribbon.

9. For families with children, fill a cookie jar with cookie decorating accessories such as small bottles of neon food coloring, colored sugars, candy sprinkles, and jimmies. Don't forget to include your favorite cookie recipe.

10. Purchase a bundt cake with the hole in the center. Make a small nosegay of silk flowers in an inexpensive miniature bud vase and place in the center. Wrap with colored cellophane and a bow.

11. Purchase a decorative ceramic loaf pan and fill with quick bread mixes.

Blind man says dog saved his life after he fell onto NYC subway tracks

Submitted by: Roger Khouri

Dog saves blind man!
Cecil Williams pets his guide dog Orlando in his hospital bed following a fall onto subway tracks from the platform at 145th Street in New York on Tuesday, Dec. 17, 2013. (AP / John Minchillo) Colleen Long and Kiley Armstrong, The Associated Press Published Tuesday, December 17, 2013 8:45PM EST. Last Updated Wednesday, December 18, 2013 3:48PM EST

NEW YORK -- Gallant guide dog Orlando, a black Labrador retriever, bravely leapt on to the tracks at a Manhattan subway platform Tuesday after his blind owner lost consciousness and tumbled in front of an oncoming train.
Cecil Williams, 61, and Orlando both escaped serious injury when the train passed over top of them -- a miraculous end to a harrowing ordeal that began when Williams began to feel faint on his way to the dentist.
quote He tried to hold me up, end quote the emotional Williams told The Associated Press from his hospital bed, his voice breaking at times.

Witnesses said Orlando began barking frantically and tried to stop Williams from falling from the platform. Matthew Martin told the New York Post that Orlando jumped down and tried to rouse Williams even as a train approached.

quote He was kissing him, trying to get him to move, end quote Martin said. Witnesses called for help and the train's motorman slowed his approach as Williams and Orlando lay in the trench between the rails.

quote The dog saved my life, end quote Williams said. As Williams regained consciousness, he said he heard someone telling him to be still. Emergency workers put him on a stretcher and pulled him from the subway, and made sure Orlando was not badly injured.

quote I am feeling amazed, end quote Williams said. quote I feel that God, the powers that be, have something in store for me. They did not take me away this time. I am here for a reason. end quote Williams was taken to a hospital where he is expected to recover, with Orlando at his bedside. Williams, a large bandage on his head, said he is not sure why he lost consciousness, but he is on insulin and other medications.

Orlando, described by Williams as serious but laid-back, was making new friends at the hospital. He will be rewarded with some kind of special treat, Williams said, along with plenty of affection and scratches behind the ears.

quote (He) gets me around and saves my life on a daily basis, end quote Williams said. Williams, of Brooklyn, has been blind since 1995, and Orlando is his second dog. The lab will be 11 on Jan. 5, and will be retiring soon, Williams said. His health insurance will not cover the cost of a non-working dog, so he will be looking for a good home for him.

If he had the money, Williams said, quote I would definitely keep him. end quote

Sprint Introduces Kona

Submitted by Karen Santiago

SPRINT Introduces Kona; Press Release
Sprint Launches Kyocera Kona – Industry First Feature Phone with Verbal Translation of Internet Browsing Available for free, Kona makes it easy for the visually impaired to stay connected. OVERLAND PARK, Kan.– (BUSINESS WIRE) – September 06, 2013 – For the visually impaired, using a mobile device hasn't always been easy. Kyocera Kona from Sprint (NYSE: S) helps to solve that problem by providing an easy-to-use compact flip phone that is the first feature phone in the industry to offer verbal translation enabling Internet browsing. Kyocera Kona is available in direct-ship sales channels Web (www.sprint.com) and Telesales (1-800-SPRINT1) for free after a $50 mail-in rebate via reward card(1) and with a new two-year service agreement or eligible upgrade. It will be available in all remaining Sprint retail channels beginning Friday, Sept. 13. Kyocera Kona is the latest enhancement to Sprint's product portfolio designed to ensure accessibility for all. According to the National Federation of the Blind, more than 6.5 million people reported a visual disability in 2011(2)

Kona is also the first feature phone to offer a user interface with verbal descriptions of navigation, with which the device describes what is highlighted on the screen and works with menus, messaging, contacts, missed calls, notifications, and many other functions. Other accessibility features include variable-speed text-to-speech service, which reads texts to users, high-contrast user interface options to accommodate a variety of vision ranges, dedicated In Case of Emergency (ICE) and 911 shortcuts, and a tactile keyboard with well-defined buttons.

Quote, Sprint has always been dedicated to ensuring accessibility – whether it's our award-winning accessibility Sprint ID application bundles or a device like Kona providing first-of-its-kind features for the visually impaired, end quote, said David Owens, vice president, Product Development, Sprint. Quote, We are providing this product free of charge because we want anyone who has a unique need to be able to take advantage of this great new offering. End quote The new Unlimited, My Way(SM) rate plans for basic phones feature unlimited talk, text and data while on the Sprint network for only $60 per month (excluding taxes and fees). Sprint Kyocera Kona customers can benefit from The Sprint Unlimited Guarantee that promises customers unlimited talk (calls to any wireline or mobile phone), text and data while on the Sprint network, for the life of the line of service. This guarantee is available to new and existing customers who sign up for Sprint's new Unlimited, My Way(SM) plan and will apply to customers as long as they remain on the plan, meet the terms and conditions of the plan and pay their bill in full and on-time.

Quote, Almost half of American cell-phone users have not made the jump to smartphones, so there is clearly a significant demand and need in the market for easy-to-use feature phones that don't require additional data plans, end quote, said Eric Anderson, senior vice president and general manager of global sales and marketing at Kyocera Communications. Quote, We addressed that need and went one step further in adding incredible accessibility features that make Kona a reliable communication tool for the visually impaired. End quote

Kyocera Kona is a CDMA2000(R) 1X-Advanced flip phone featuring a 2.4-inch QVGA TFT LCD internal color display as well as a 1.44-inch TFT LCD color external display. Capturing quick snapshots is easy with Kona's 2-megapixel camera with 2x zoom and dedicated function key. Calls can be safely taken over Bluetooth(R) wireless technology (2.1 with Enhanced Data Rate), via the 3.5mm headset jack or through the speakerphone with dedicated function key. With a strong 870mAh Li-Ion battery, Kona is a compact 3.94 x 2.05 x 0.68 inches and weighs only 3.7 ounces.

As part of its all-new network buildout, Sprint is bringing an enhanced 3G experience with better wireless signal strength, in-building coverage, and fewer dropped/blocked calls. These 3G improvements are already available to customers in several cities across the country, such as Baltimore, Boston, Los Angeles, New York and Washington, D.C. Sprint 3G customers in these areas, including the company's prepaid customers on Assurance Wireless, Virgin Mobile and Boost Mobile, can expect to see better coverage and improved network reliability and voice quality once the improvements come to their areas. For more information about the Sprint network, visit

Sprint's corporate responsibility program, Sprint Good Works(SM), is guided by the principle that doing the right thing is good business. More than a statement, it's also a belief: Good does indeed work(SM). That's why Sprint is committed to anticipating the needs of customers and making award-winning services accessible to all. By empowering seniors and people with disabilities through accessible technology, Sprint is demonstrating how good technology works as a positive force in society.

Sprint Natalie Papaj, 703-592-8412;

or Kyocera Communications Inc.
John Chier, 858-882-3543;

Source: Sprint and Kyocera

Safeway Announces Website Accessibility and Usability Enhancements to its On-line Grocery Delivery Website Benefiting Shoppers with Visual Impairments

Customers Applaud Safeway’s Commitment
Pleasanton, California (December 13, 2013)
Submitted by Roger Khouri

Safeway (NYSE:SWY) today announced a comprehensive initiative to make its online grocery shopping website more accessible and usable for Safeway shoppers with visual impairments. The site enhancements are the result of collaboration between Safeway and several visually impaired customers.

Safeway has adopted the Web Content Accessibility Guidelines (WCAG) version 2.0 level AA as its accessibility standard and has already made significant enhancements to its online shopping website to meet this standard and will continue to do so over the next year.

The customers praised Safeway’s announcement.
Quote. I have been a Safeway customer for years, and with this initiative Safeway has assumed a leadership role in its industry. I love the convenience of Safeways online grocery shopping, and have already seen significant improvements as a result of the commitment announced today. End Quote. — Rebecca Welz-Griffith

Quote. I am thrilled that Safeway is recognizing the needs of its customers with visual impairments like me. The changes announced today will make it easier for so many of Vons customers throughout Southern California. End Quote. —Cindy Flerman

Quote. Safeway has a long history of supporting our communities and people with disabilities. This decision is an important step towards helping our customers who are blind or visually impaired have a better shopping experience. End Quote. —Larree Renda, Safeway Executive Vice President

About the Web Content Accessibility Guidelines (WCAG)
The WCAG 2.0 Guidelines are promulgated by the Web Accessibility Initiative (WAI) of the World Wide Web Consortium (W3C) and ensure that online content is more accessible and usable to persons with visual and other disabilities. The Guidelines do not affect the content or look and feel of a website. They are of particular benefit to blind computer users who use voice output or magnification technology on their computers and mobile devices and who, like some individuals with mobility impairments, rely on a keyboard instead of a mouse for navigation.

The W3C is an international community that develops open standards to ensure the long-term growth of the Web. The Web Accessibility Initiative is a program of the W3C that works with site owners, developers, people with disabilities and other interested parties to develop accessibility standards. More information is available at the Web Accessibility Initiative website.

Safeway Inc. is a Fortune 100 company and one of the largest food and drug retailers in North America based on sales. The company operates 1,406 stores in the United States which had annual sales of $37.5 billion in 2012.

Protecting the eyes and vision of astronauts

Friday 13 December 2013Eye Health / Blindness
Medical News Today
Submitted by Roger Khouri

Those who travel to space are rewarded with a beautiful sight - planet Earth. But the effects of space travel on the human sense of sight are not so beautiful. More than 30 percent of astronauts who returned from two-week space shuttle missions and 60 percent who spent six months aboard the International Space Station were diagnosed with eye problems. Two recent investigations examined mechanisms that may explain eye changes in space flight, help find ways to minimize this health risk to astronauts and eventually prevent and treat eye diseases on Earth.

Mice were flown aboard shuttle flights STS-133 in March 2011 and STS-135 in July 2011 as part of the Commercial Biomedical Testing Module-2 (CBTM-2) and CBTM-3 investigations into how space affects muscle and bones. These sets of mice found second life, contributing to other studies through a tissue-sharing program. Two studies used eye tissue from the mice to provide the first direct evidence that spaceflight causes cellular-level damage that has the potential to cause long-term vision problems.

Susana Zanello, Universities Space Research Association scientist at NASAs Johnson Space Center in Houston, examined eye tissue for changes in gene expression in the retina - the sensory tissue at the back of the eye. That study is the subject of a paper, Quote, Spaceflight Effects and Molecular Responses in the Mouse Eye: Preliminary Observations after Shuttle Mission STS-133, End Quote, recently published in Gravitational and Space Research.

Results from a study of mice from the second flight were detailed by Xiao W. Mao, MD, a researcher in the Division of Radiation Research at Loma Linda University and Medical Center in California, and her colleagues in Quote, Spaceflight Environment Induces Mitochondrial Oxidative Damage in Ocular Tissue, End Quote, published in Radiation Research.

Both studies implicated oxidative stress in eye damage. SpaceFlight exposes astronauts - and mice - to radiation, hypothermia, hypoxia and variations in gravity, all of which may play roles in tissue injury, and, in particular, oxidative stress. Oxidative stress reflects an imbalance between the reactive oxygen that is generated by normal cell metabolism and the cells ability to handle toxic byproducts from that metabolism.

The imbalance created by oxidative stress produces peroxides and free radicals, which contribute to a number of degenerative conditions, including aging. They also are known to cause damage to DNA, proteins, cell membranes and organelles inside cells. These organelles include mitochondria that convert oxygen and nutrients into energy. Mitochondria are particularly sensitive to oxidative stress and, therefore, to the effects of microgravity and radiation in space. Mitochondria are thought to play an important role in damage to the retina and have been linked to age- and disease-related eye problems.

Maos study examined mitochondria-associated gene expression in the mouse eye tissue and found significant changes in several genes involved in oxidative stress response. Quote. We measured 84 genes and found nine that are really critical for developing these changes and associated with damage, End Quote, she said. Quote. These changes were after short-term flight and might be reversible or might deteriorate over time. But the data so far do indicate a risk to astronauts from oxidative changes. End Quote.

In the STS-133 samples, Zanello found increased expression of genes involved in response to oxidative stress in retina tissue. Quote. We saw this effect immediately after landing, which means it was a defensive increase in response to oxidative stress, End Quote, she said. Also notable was that a week after spaceflight, the response had decreased, indicating that the damage may be reversible. Quote. That opens the door to the possibility of countermeasures, such as nutritional anti-oxidants, End Quote, Zanello said.

The Zanello study also reports the presence of two indicators of optic nerve damage, glial fibrilar acidic protein (GFAP) and beta-amyloid. GFAP is known to be elevated by stress and inflammation in the central nervous system and present following retina injury. Studies have found beta-amyloid in tissue following traumatic brain injury and as evidence of optic nerve damage in shaken-baby syndrome.

Both researchers say more work needs to be done to confirm these results and to develop appropriate countermeasures. This follow-up investigation also could use the tissue-sharing program, but researchers say they need a larger number of samples from model organisms that had longer exposure to space.

These investigations move scientists closer to development of countermeasures, such as drugs or dietary supplements, to protect the eyes and vision of astronauts. People on Earth with eye problems related to aging, such as macular degeneration, and diseases, such as diabetic glaucoma, also would benefit. That will mean more people can enjoy beautiful sights, whether in space or on the ground.

And Survey Says

By Roger Khouri

In this section, I pose a question to you each month all and report back on the survey results. It is a way to hear how others feel about an interesting topic from amongst our online community. So, for this first Survey Says of the new year,
I wanted to ask you if you will have any New Years resolutions. I do not care if you will actually follow through with them, or if you do not think you can actually succeed…I simply want to know if you will have any New Years resolutions.

Simply write back to
with your Yes or No answer. It is not mandatory for you to justify your reasoning, but, if you choose to do so, perhaps your comments will appear in next months Survey Says section when I reveal the results on how folks voted.

Thanks in advance for everyone who writes in.

The Recipe Box -

By Suzy Barnes


2 ½ cups cooked, shredded chicken breast, or 2 8 ounce cans of chunk chicken, drained
2 8 ounce packages cream cheese, softened
1 cup chunky Bleu Cheese dressing, or Ranch
3/4 cup hot pepper sauce
1 1/2 cups shredded extra sharp Cheddar cheese

Things You Can Dip:
1 bunch celery, cleaned and cut into 4 inch pieces
1 8 ounce box chicken-flavored crackers or Frito Scoops

Mix chicken, dressing, pepper sauce and cheese, except for ½ cup cheddar. Place in casserole and top with remaining cheese.
Cook until hot and bubbly.

Oven: 25 minutes at 350
Microwave: 5 to 7 minutes
Crockpot: Place in crock rather than casserole, topping with cheese. Heat on low about 45 minutes.
When you hear it bubble, it is time to EAT!

Dear Betty Blunt

Please note:
This submission is not to be taken seriously. It is just for fun! If you would like to submit a question for Miss Betty Blunt to answer, please write to:

She may or may not answer your question seriously, and she may or may not give you the answer you were hoping for, but one thing is for sure, you will get a good laugh out of her witty, bold, and blunt advice. She will often make comments that we all wish we could say, but are just too afraid to make. So, send in your questions, and let us see if she can help you with your relationship issues. If you wish, your initials, city, and state will be altered to conceal your identity.

Dear Betty Blunt,
OK, I have a small confession to make. I took a small peak at some of the gifts under the tree that my husband had purchased for me. Well, he was way off on getting me something good that would suit my tastes. There were ugly shoes, and a pukey coloured purse. So, I dropped some hints to my husband and he ended up returning those gifts and getting me something else. Yet, much to my surprise, when I opened up the new gifts on Christmas, I was shocked to get cookies, candies, and chocolates. My husband knows that I am trying to lose weight. So,it baffles me why he would get me calary loaded sweets.

Sincerely yours, confused and disappointed,
Bridget Johnson
Parry Sound, Ontario

Dear Little Brat,
Your husband got you those sweets because kids like junk food. And, peaking at your gifts before Christmas day is a big no no that most kids do. You acted like a little kid, so you do not get any sympathy from me for not getting any of your preferred gifts. He got you gifts that you complained about, so, what is the poor sap supposed to do? Guys do not like hints, they want it in black and white, otherwise, you simply have to let the pieces fall where they may. Did you get him anything, or, did you simply do tit for tat and not get him anything good? Yep, another childish thing for you to do and that does not surprise me. So, you better shape up young lady because santa is watching for next year. All the best for 2014!

Betty Blunt

Dear Betty Blunt,
I got my girlfriend a gift card to spend at Peoples Jewelers. It was for one thousand dollars. However, when she opened up the envelope, she was not too impressed and told me that I should have baught her something. I would have thought that giving her a gift card would avoid any bad choices of me picking something out that she did not like. Can you help me make sense of it?

Ben O’Brian
Dublin, Ireland

Dear Sugar Daddy,
Wow! A thousand bucks! That is some serious dough! Your lady friend probably got upset with you because she wanted you to put some thought in her gift. But, you need to dump that ungrateful block head and give me a call. I would be more than happy to get a thousand dollar gift card. I know that guys can not put two and two together to get their lady something nice, so, I will simply pick it out myself. Think of it this way, I will gladly take your dough and save you the headache from buying me some crappy looking over priced jewel. Valentines Day is right around the corner, so, be sure to save.

Betty Blunt

Think Tank

Submitted by Rich De Steno and Roger Khouri

Thank you to everyone who submitted answers to last months brain teasers. Many of you were very close, but close only counts in horseshoes and hand grenades! Just kidding!
Congratulations go out to Brenda Green and Thom Spittle for answering both brain teasers correctly!
Also, a round of applause for Lee Smiley and Suzy Barnes for answering one of the brain teasers correctly!

Here are the December brain teasers and their answers:
1. You walk across a bridge and you see a boat full of people yet there is not a single person on board. How is that possible?
Answer: The ship is full of married people, so that is why you cant see a single person on it.

2. You throw away the outside and cook the inside. Then you eat the outside and throw away the inside. What did you eat?
Answer: Corn on the cob.

Now, for our super duper brain teasers for December! Can you solve these? Lets see who thinks they are smarter than a fifth grader!

1. How many apples can you fit into an empty box?

2. What starts with a T, ends with a T, and has "T" in it?

Please submit the answers to these brain teasers to:

We will let you know if you are correct, and if so, we will publish your name in the next issue of the newsletter. Have fun trying to solve these puzzles!

Words to Live By

quote, I hope that in this year to come, you make mistakes.
Because if you are making mistakes, then you are making new things, trying new things, learning, living, pushing yourself, changing yourself, changing your world. You're doing things you have never done before, and more importantly, you are Doing Something.
So that is my wish for you, and all of us, and my wish for myself. Make New Mistakes. Make glorious, amazing mistakes. Make mistakes nobody has ever made before. Do not freeze, do not stop, do not worry that it is not good enough, or it is not perfect, whatever it is: art, or love, or work or family or life.
Whatever it is you are scared of doing, Do it.

Make your mistakes, next year and forever.end quote.
By: Neil Diamond

quote, Make New Year's goals. Dig within, and discover what you would like to have happen in your life this year. This helps you do your part. It is an affirmation that you're interested in fully living life in the year to come.
Goals give us direction. They put a powerful force into play on a universal, conscious, and subconscious level. Goals give our life direction.
What would you like to have happen in your life this year? What would you like to do, to accomplish? What good would you like to attract into your life? What particular areas of growth would you like to have happen to you? What blocks, or character defects, would you like to have removed?
What would you like to attain? Little things and big things? Where would you like to go? What would you like to have happen in friendship and love? What would you like to have happen in your family life?
What problems would you like to see solved? What decisions would you like to make? What would you like to happen in your career?

Write it down. Take a piece of paper, a few hours of your time, and write it all down - as an affirmation of you, your life, and your ability to choose. Then let it go.
The new year stands before us, like a chapter in a book, waiting to be written. We can help write that story by setting goals. end quote.
By: Melody Beattie

A Round of Applause

Thanks goes out to you, our extended family on Out-Of-Sight! You participate and spend your time getting to know one another on the site. Without you, there would be no need for programming, no need for special activities, and no need to even have a site. So, thank you very much! Thanks for making this community an Out of Sight place to be!

Oosabelle’s List

No, this is not Craig’s List, but it is the next best thing! If you have something to sell, or announce, send us your ad, and we will post it, as long as there is space available in the newsletter. Send your ads to:

**My name is Duyahn Walker, AKA TheMusicMan. i would like to tell you about a radio station that is for all.
The name of the station is called sky106radio. Our website is:

You can look at our schedule to find out when your favorite dj's are on air. You can also fill out an application to become a member of our broadcasting staff.
You may also follow our twitter account which is:

There are several ways to listen. Check us out on Winamp, Window's media player, real player, Mozekty, Tapin radio, and ITunes.
Winamp and iTunes also works on the Mack if you have one. If you have an IPhone, we can be found in the IBlink radio app and the OOTunes app.

A small note, some of the programming can be for adults only. If your easily offended, you might not want to listen to these special programs.

Please tell your friends and family about Sky106radio!
You can catch my show named The Musical MeyHem show every Saturday from 6 Pm until 9 Pm cdt.
I will also have Ms.Reacher with me every week too! So come in and have a blast with us and the rest of the staff.
All on sky106radio.

**Come join Joanie Leonard, Every Tuesday at 4pm Eastern for joanies corner at
Just enter your name and leave the password blank. They have computer tech talks and music for their listeners. So, come check them out!

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