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A Windee Graduation Speech: Your Team For Success

Memorial Day: President Lincoln Weighs In

A Windee Graduation Speech: Avoiding The Road Not Worth Taking

A Windee Graduation Speech: Your Team For Success

Posted in: Guest Writers | Comments (0)

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The following is one of a series published here every graduation season

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“Thank you for that roaring ovation. You really know how to appreciate a great commencement speaker.

Before I wax philosophical, I ask the graduating class to do what I asked my law school graduating class to do when I gave the speech as class president: please rise and give a standing ovation to the people that made it possible for you to be here today. Namely, your family, friends, spouses, loved ones, mentors, teachers and any other supporting cast who got you into this end-zone.Image result for endzone celebration steelers

To get into the end-zone of life, you’ll need a good team around you

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Because whether you realize it or not, you will not achieve success, however each of you define it, without the help of others.

To get here today, you had parents who sired you. And I heard pregnancy is no picnic so your mothers deserve honorable mention, to say the least. Thereafter, once you landed on this planet, you were raised. From diapers to adulthood, there was a lot done and much sacrifice by those who raised you. Sleepless nights at your birth and sleepless nights in your teenage years, sandwiching exasperation.

But here you are.

Yet your team of supporters will expand as you enter the world and pursue your callings. If you think you will succeed alone, think again.

Astronaut Neil Armstrong. who is the first-known human-being to set foot on the moon, said about that 1969 mission, and I quote, I was certainly aware that this was a culmination of the work of 300,000 or 400,000 people over a decade.” Mr. Armstrong recognized that when he set foot on the lunar dust, it was not the first seconds of an effort by one person but the culmination of many people’s efforts over a long period of time. So, too, will your lunar landings be the product of a team effort and not just solely your talent and energy. This reality cannot be lost especially in this age as individualism has increased to perhaps an all-time human high. There are even world leaders who claim that isolationism for their countries is the best path. Nothing could be more wrong. The human endeavor is a team sport. Individualism is an important aspect of advancing it but in the end, for us to win, it must be done as a team. So as you embark on your mission called life, remember to not only pick a good team, but also recognize and appreciate them.

That is all I have to say today but when I presented this speech to the administration they said it was a bit short and requested that I add to it and text was even provided.

With that said, I ask you to remember how much you have benefited from your education here at Currencia U. and that you give back and financially support your alma mater.

I should’ve written a longer speech.

Godspeed to you.”
-I.M. Windee

admin @ June 2, 2018

Memorial Day: President Lincoln Weighs In

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The following, published here every Memorial Day weekend and Veteran’s Day, is a letter from President Lincoln sent to a mother whose sons died in the Civil War for the Union cause

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President Lincoln realized that sacrifice must be made to preserve the republic

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Executive Mansion,
Washington, Nov. 21, 1864.

Dear Madam,

I have been shown in the files of the War Department a statement of the Adjutant General of Massachusetts that you are the mother of five sons who have died gloriously on the field of battle. I feel how weak and fruitless must be any word of mine which should attempt to beguile you from the grief of a loss so overwhelming. But I cannot refrain from tendering you the consolation that may be found in the thanks of the Republic they died to save. I pray that our Heavenly Father may assuage the anguish of your bereavement, and leave you only the cherished memory of the loved and lost, and the solemn pride that must be yours to have laid so costly a sacrifice upon the altar of freedom.

Yours, very sincerely and respectfully,

A. Lincoln

admin @ May 28, 2018

A Windee Graduation Speech: Avoiding The Road Not Worth Taking

Posted in: Ruminations | Comments (0)

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The following is one of a series published here every graduation season

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“Thank you for that roaring ovation. Throwing the rose peddles was touching and even more so because they were the kind I requested.

While most speeches speak to soaring platitiudes and grandiose goals, I offer far more practical, albeit strategic, advice.

In a speech I recently gave, I advised graduates that their success would be directly tied to the people they surround themselves with.

This means it’s important not to surround yourself with people who will not make you successful as well as avoiding bad deals.

There are people out there who can only lower your batting average and choices which while giving instant gratification will only be bad for you in the long run. Such must be avoided.

Image result for the road not taken

Choices in life may not be so obvious nor easy to make

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To be with people who will benefit you, you can’t be with those who will not.

And such choices will not always be easy nor obvious. One of the harder things to do in life is to accept one facet of the quixotic refrigerator magnet wisdom:  grant me the serenity to accept the things I cannot change.

Accepting that certain people will not be a part of your winning team can be difficult, but must be done.

In 1986, President Reagan, in Reykjavik, Iceland, walked away from what would have been a short-term political victory in a nuclear arms deal with the Soviet Union because he knew that the deal was bad for the country. It took fortitude but he had it. A year later he got the deal he wanted.

You too will be tested throughout your personal and professional lives with bad options disguised as good ones. I urge you to walk away from such.

Finally, I close with wisdom that your administration here at Moneteria University required that I impart today in order to speak before you: be generous alumni and give often to your alma mater.

I will go home now and take a hot bath for 2 hours.

Godspeed to you all.

-I.M. Windee

admin @ May 15, 2018

A Windee Graduation Speech: Absolute Success Corrupts Absolutely

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************************************************** The following is one of a series published here every graduation season

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“Thank you for that extended ovation. It affirms my decision to request that audience applause signs be installed and an activation button placed under my foot.

Today you are here with the most opportunity laid before the feet of any graduating class. Disregard what is said about American Decline; you live in what is known to be the most technologically advanced society known to humanity. Yes, we have shortcomings to be addressed but how we communicate, our life expectancy and medical care, our housing, transportation, sources of knowledge, etc. overall exceed anything in the past.

You are set up for great success and many of you will achieve such.

 

 

Image result for otto von bismarckBud Fox 2

A 19th-century German chancellor foresaw 20th-century corrupted people

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But if you do, I ask that you never lose your moorings. Never become, as my grandmother used to say, too big for your britches. In short, don’t let success go to your head to make you discard, assuming you now have them, the basic human values that we should always have.

If you look around your classmates, you will see several that will become wildly successful in the conventional, if not true, sense. There are likely several captains of industry amongst you.

Amongst them are some of the finest, down-to-earth people you may ever know. Unfortunately, that could well change when they achieve success.

I am familiar with a person who was worthy of beatification in his 20s. Through hard work and, of course, luck, he is now extremely successful in the corporate world. Unfortunately, such has skewed his judgment and now the status of the people he associates with, as well as the country clubs they belong to and their tax brackets, are the dispositive factor in whether they are worthy to be in his orbit.

The 19th-century German Chancellor Otto Von Bismarck once observed that absolute power corrupts absolutely. So too does absolute success corrupt the mores of even the best of people. I ask you not to fall into such trap.

I close with what Portfolia U’s administration has required me to remind you of: that your donations to your alma mater not only help humanity but are tax-deductible.

I must now take a large dose of Dramamine.

Godspeed to you.

-I.M. Windee

admin @ May 13, 2018

Reflections From Another Tax Season

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THE FOLLOWING IS UPDATED AND PUBLISHED EVERY APRIL 15

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An accountant recalls (non) Kodak moments from another tax season

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As another tax busy season slogs to a close, this CPA has some memories:

  • (client) “Why must I give you the same forms that I gave to you last year? Can’t you just use those?”
  • (the wife on March 20) “I booked our vacation for April 1-7; we got a great rate!”
  • (a client on March 25) “I want to thank you for the great job on my taxes. How about dinner the first week of April?”
  • (client) “Why must I pay? I don’t like what the government does with my money!”
  • (client) “I realize you’re 5 days from a final deadline but I really wanna talk about tax planning for next year. Would you call me in the next hour?”

Recounting another tax season

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  • Some clients you must gently warn of the potential downsides of aggressive tax positions; others you must read the federal sentencing guidelines to.
  • The public accounting analog to “will you love me in the morning?” is “will you still employ me after April 15?”
  • (client) “Mr. Windee: in response to your request for my wage statements, I enclose all of my charitable contributions. I trust you now have everything and can complete my return.”
  • Perhaps more than any other industry, CPA firms go all-out to be named “one of the best firms to work for.” An excellent rule of thumb is when you see a firm with one or several such awards, avoid it like the plague…at least as an employee.
  • (client) “Hi. I dropped my taxes off this morning and was wondering if I could pick  up my returns now.”
  • “I wasn’t expecting such a high quote of $400 to have your firm do my taxes. I think I’ll just go back to H&R Block and pay $500.”
  • Being a public-accountant is the art of wanting to tell some of your clients “go &@%#!$%!* yourself!!!” but instead saying “thank you for being my client.”
  • (partner) “Look, I know that Widget Corp. is and has been a tough client who had 3 bookkeepers last year, multiple staff turnover on our side and their books are a mess; not to mention that the owner is recalcitrant and disagrees with everything for the sake of disagreeing. BUT WHY ARE WE OVERBUDGET WITH THEM AND THEIR TAXES NOT COMPLETED??!!??”
  • During tax season, snow days reveal the inherent dichotomy of mindset between staff and management. For staff, a light dusting means staying home for a week and hoping the apocalypse will pass. For management, 3 feet of snow can be easily driven in if you have 4-wheel drive and good tires.
  • (partner) “I’m glad you came in on the new daylight savings time. But remember: at the end of the day it is really an hour earlier under the old time so feel free to stay and make it up.”
  • (to client): “We need your brokerage statements to complete your return.” (client): “Okay. What do you need to complete my return?”
  • (client e-mail) I still have to get you the remainder of my tax papers. :) And the deadline is only 2 weeks away. :) :)  I’ll be on vacation next week in the Bahamas. :) :) :) I’ll get you everything when I get back. :) :) :) :) Boy, I bet you could use a vacation! :) :) :) :) :)
  • (client) “I only gave 4 of the 24 pages of my brokerage statement to you as I did not want to overwhelm you. I also figured that this would keep the bill for your services down. You’re welcome.”
  • (client) “Is a deposit on my grave tax-deductible?”  Yes, in the after-life.
  • (client) “I tagged and identified what each self-explanatory document is (1099, w-2, etc.) just in case you couldn’t understand them. But I threw my receipts in an envelope and assume you can figure them out.”
  • (client) “Mr. Windee: I got your voicemail about brokerage statements and to answer your question, I included the food store flier as I took advantage of their 10% Off Sale and wasn’t sure if that had tax implications.
  • (client) “This is unbelievable. You mean I owe $200,000 of taxes on 1 million dollars of income??!!?? I can’t comprehend this misfortune!!! WHY??!!??”
  • For a deceased client’s final return, what address do you use? Heaven? Hell? How about their occupation? Corpse?
  • (I.M. Windee after a performance review): “That which does not kill you puts you in the ICU.”
  • (a partner in a performance review): “Look, I know you do not want to exceed budgets but you MUST record all of your time. Now, about the Widget Co. return, YOU BLEW THE BUDGET!!!  WHAT HAPPENED??!!??”
  • Most public accounting firms have a two-prong employee retention program: high unemployment and the counter-offer.
  • (client) “I know you might be busy as it’s April 10 but I got the 17th and final notice before levy for me to file a franchise tax return for 2 years ago. I didn’t give you the prior 16 notices as I assumed this would all blow over. They gave us 10 days from receipt to file which means it must be submitted tomorrow.”
  • (client) “I don’t mind [sort of] paying you for your services but my refund was only $300; isn’t your fee of $200 a bit much compared to my refund?”
  • To the client who generously gave $20,000 of non-cash donations in the form of various household items: “Your New Jersey return shows a refund, would you like to donate to any of the charitable causes listed on it?” The answer is predictable.
  • (the client from March 25 above) “I haven’t heard from you. May I presume Friday night, April 1?”
  • (client) “Is there a box I may check on the return that switches me from Liberal to Conservative so I may pay less? Those wild-eyed Conservatives are starting to look more reasonable.”
  • (client) “My taxes this year should be easy as there’s not much to report: most of my income was paid in cash.”
  • A power outage made me appreciate auto-save and document recovery in many programs. How was it done before computers? A power outage meant all work on paper was lost, no doubt.
  • (client) “It’s so stressful trying to get my papers to you. How do you do it?”
  • When a partner tells you that you’re not paying for yourself when you work 50 hours a week and are billed out at 3 times what you are paid, you feel like the $4 candy bar that hotels claim they lose money on.
  • (the wife when working home): “DON’T TELL ME IT’S MARCH 30 AND YOU’RE BUSY WITH TAXES!! I SAW YOU GO TO THE BATHROOM WHICH IS NOT EXACTLY ‘WORKING FROM HOME’! Now the garage needs painting; put on your overalls and grab a brush. After that you’re take me shopping.”
  • (client)  “Did you e-file my returns yet?” IMW: “No, did you send back authorization to do so?” Client: “No, but why didn’t you e-file my returns yet?”
  • (an accounting firm partner calling on the phone) “I’m looking at line 17 of Schedule E of the Smith return. How did you get to that amount?!?…..What do you mean you can’t recall?!?….YOU PREPARED THE RETURN ONLY 2 MONTHS AGO!…..You want to refresh your memory?!?…..What do you think this is, the courtroom?!?…..I think you’re suffering from memory loss!”
  • (virtually any accounting firm partner in the full-heat portion of their career e-mailing a staff member) “We are in the business of providing answers to our clients. If every time they came to us with a question and we responded with a deer in the headlight look, they would not come back to us. Which means they would not pay us. Which means we would not pay you. I trust you see the interrelationship. If you are unable to immediately provide answers to complex, arcane and often unexplored questions of tax law, may I suggest another shop? Jackson Hewitt and H&R Block come to mind. At least there you would be only asked what the standard deduction amount is, although I’m not sure you could even handle that one given your recent performance. Please take this as all my remarks are intended: constructively.

-I. Beetum
Partner/Unofficial Morale Director

 cc:

1. Partners & Staff
2. Accounting Today
3. Journal of Accountancy

  • (client) “Thanks for doing our taxes again this year. When you get a chance, would you look into why you sent us a bill last year?”
  • (client) “No, I paid the balance from last year, but did not pay any of the “estimated” tax vouchers. Is that an issue?  I figured that was only a suggestion. And why do I have a balance due?”
  • A tax manager should remember that there’s a reviewer checklist to be strictly followed and adhered to when reviewing a staff-prepared return and that such list should be discarded when reviewing a return prepared by a partner. How could a partner be wrong?
  • (client) “I got the tax returns you prepared for me but the return I drafted on TurboTax not only produced a lower tax but no tax at all…”
  • (client) “I know I owed money from last year that you said would be offset against this year’s refund but I don’t understand why they took my refund this year? Would you explain it to me for the 17th time?”
  • (the memory loss partner) “Look, we encourage good health but why are you going to the doctor during tax season?!?…….Do you see me going?!?….Can’t you wait until April 15?!?……You should have stopped coughing up blood by then and you’ll save the co-pay!”
  • (the wife) “I don’t care what time of the year it is! The fertilizer must be laid down no later than April 14!”
  • (client) “Great to see you again, Mr. Windee. Seems like only a year ago we spoke.”
  • (client) “Hi Mr. Windee. I received my w-2s today. I have no idea what the next step is with them. Could you let me know what I do?”
  • [an accounting firm partner]: “What happened with the Widget Corporation return??!!?? It was a 20-hour job that I priced at 10 hours and budgeted to do in 5 yet you put 7 hours in on it!!!! Where’s the 2 hours over budget gonna come from??!!?? Your paycheck??!!??”
  • Commensurate with the preceding, all partners want every minute applied to a charge code (except their own clients’). But when they cannot collect they must write such time off. So an hour of work by a $100/hour staff that cannot be billed must be written off. To the partner, that is like taking $100 out of their pockets despite such uncollected charges being what a colleague of mine once wisely coined “funny money.” Until you collect it, it’s just a theory.
  • (client) “Wow! The way you just explained my return to me makes it sound so simple! I’m good at math. Maybe I should try doing my returns myself.”
  • (the client from March 25 above) “I figured it out; you’re on a diet and don’t want to eat out. How about a Yankees game on April 13? It’s against the Orioles, a great rivalry!”
  • (client) “Why do I have to make a payment when my neighbor doesn’t?”
  • (the wife on April 12) “I don’t care about your silly client meeting at 6 pm. You tell your client that every Friday night is pizza night with the family and you must be home early. Besides, your top client will understand, trust me.”
  • (client) “If I only supported the Iraq war but not Afghanistan, may I get a reduction on my taxes?”
  • [that accounting firm partner in a voicemail]: “Where are you? You may have 3 inches of snow where you live but there’s no snow here at the office! And I hear it’s 78 degrees and sunny in Hawaii. How can you not drive when it’s 78 degrees and sunny??!!??”
  • (client) “WHAT DO YOU MEAN I OWE??!!?? I THOUGHT YOU WERE A GOOD ACCOUNTANT!!!”
  • Starting in late March, my firm has a shoot-to-wound policy: any tax professional who strays too far from the building receives a leg shot that allows them to keep functioning in front of a keyboard……..at least until April 15.
  • (the client from March 25 above) “I’m disappointed having not heard from you and it’s mid-April. I’ll give you one last chance: how about snowboarding the first week of July?”

-I.M. Windee

admin @ April 15, 2018

Santa Flies into the Liberal State: Rudolph’s Big Carbon Footprint

Posted in: Ruminations | Comments (0)

THE FOLLOWING IS UPDATED AND PUBLISHED EVERY CHRISTMAS  SEASON

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North Pole (AP [Arctic Press]) – In what can best be described as one of Santa Claus’ worst weeks ever, the corporate conglomerate better known as  Kris Kringle Inc. (“KKI”) was on the receiving end of the wrath of the federal government, former President Obama, #metoo, Occupy Wall Street, congressional Democrats, organized labor and feminists.

On Monday morning, the Department of Justice led the charge by filing a suit in federal court alleging that KKI was, in fact, a monopoly. An Obama administration holdover took the reins (pardon the pun) and held a press conference explaining the action. ”One of the greatest threats to our economy is the erosion of free competition in our markets. And no one best exemplifies a lack of free competition better than Santa Claus and his corporate behemoth, Kris Kringle Inc. Think about it, is there any other entity out there that rides around the world on Christmas Eve and provides gifts to children? The answer is a resounding “NO!” And given that he does not charge anything for such gifts, we are looking into anti-dumping violations especially as we believe that some of his toys were not produced by his elves but in China.”

Image result for santa
Kris Kringle: terrorist, or worse, male chauvinist?

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The day only got worse as Monday afternoon saw the Environmental Protection Agency seek a court injunction against Mr. Claus’ Christmas Eve run. Apparently, the team of reindeer are considered “ruminant livestock” that are capable of producing tons of methane gas that contribute to global warming. In a press conference, an EPA spokes-something said that global warming should not be a partisan issue and that all thinking people, who care about Mother Earth, should be against Rudolph and his methane-emitting co-conspirators (Afterwards, she admitted [off the record] that EPA press conferences emit more hot air into the atmosphere than do the other alleged sources).

Rounding out the Monday barrage, former President Obama held a rare news conference since leaving office and wondered aloud if Mr. Claus was paying “his fair share” in taxes. He then went on to demand that Mr. Claus release his tax returns and suggested that a squadron of F-16s escort Mr. Claus in his sled as he flew over the United States given that he believes Santa should be on the Homeland Security Terrorist Watch List, along with Donald Trump.

Tuesday turned out to be no better as members of congress got into the fracas. In Mr. Claus, they found their pigeon…err…man. Senator Schumer of New York thundered “Santa has to decide whether he is for the middle class or against it! George W. Bush, too! And throw in Richard Nixon for good measure.” Congresswoman Nancy Pelosi suggested that Santa’s operation may fall under financial services regulations and, if not, vowed to pass legislation so that it would be, until she remembered it was no longer 2010 and that she was no longer Speaker of the House.

Wednesday continued Mr. Claus’ lousy streak: Occupy Wall Street unearthed itself and got into the fray as only they can: “Occupy North Pole.” Actually, they could not get up there due to logistics and the fact that there are no Starbucks nor bodegas at the top of the world. But they were there in spirit, protesting, and held “virtual sit-ins” smack dab at the North Pole. And their message was clear as a frozen bell: Mr. Claus is worse than the 1% as he is the only one in his class. “ELITIST!!” they whined.

Thursday saw the leadership at the New Jersey Education Association assert that the fall of Santa shows how wrong Governor Chris Christie’s policies have been. When pressed, they could not elaborate.

Then National Organization for Women president Terry O’Neill asserted that Santa Claus could well be a male chauvinist as he keeps Mrs. Claus home to bake cookies, knit sweaters and maintain the home. Ms. O’Neill said an intervention is planned to rescue Mrs. Claus from “the surly bonds of 1950s male domination.”

Related, reporters at the Washington Post have discovered that when dating, Mr. Claus gave Mrs. Claus an unexpected smooch. While well-received by her, the #metoo movement has been trying to persuade her to join them so as not to send the wrong message that giving a peck on the cheek in a horse-drawn sleigh-ride in the countryside is acceptable behavior.

Finally, on Friday, Richard Trumka, AFL-CIO President, pointed out that Santa’s elves are not unionized and thus likely exploited. He went on to say “and to my fellow worker elves, we are with you, we feel your pain whether it exists or not, and UNION YES!!”

Sensing potential political downside to this onslaught on a Christmas icon,  a joint press conference was held with lifetime bureaucrats from the Department of Labor and Department of Energy. The Energy bureaucrat reassured Mr. Claus that if KKI had to abandon its “core business model” (he looked confused when he used such term), the Energy Department would help him get into the alternative energy industry. As if on cue, the Labor bureaucrat urged congress for extended unemployment benefits legislation. But he went on to implicitly threaten Mr. Claus by saying that in the spirit of transparency, his operation would have to set up a website similar to ObamaCare’s. That caused a chill in the North Pole, no doubt.

Mr. Claus could not be reached for comment but reports say he was huddling with a team of lawyers planning his next moves.

-I.M. Windee

admin @ December 15, 2017

A Message From Currencia U.’s President….

Posted in: Guest Writers | Comments (0)

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…and a donor worthy of a urinal

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Dear Alumnus-

I write to you with both an update and a challenge.

In regards to the update, it has been a good year for the return on our endowment which has exceeded the Dow Jones average by 3.68%. Additionally, alumni generosity has been robust. Still, there is much to be done.

As many of you might have heard, Charles Herbert (“Chuck”) Hedgecroft XVII embraces this university’s vision for greatness and donated 15 million dollars to us for our Make the World Great fundraising campaign. Because such gift helped us to exceed our 75 million dollar goal sooner than expected, we have increased it to 100 million dollars to allow others to follow the inspirational lead of Chuck. We have re-named the Mortimer Bancroft (“Bo”) Buckingham XIV School of Business to the Charles Herbert Hedgecroft XVII Center for Business Studies and Human Advancement (Mr. Buckingham, who had donated 10 million dollars prior, declined to get into a bidding war given mounting legal bills for his insider trading indictment). As part of Mr. Hedgecroft’s donation terms, a lottery will be held to select 10 people from those currently receiving scholarships who must name their first-born “Hedgecroft.” Additionally, each individual must serve as a human lawn jockey at his estate for 2 of Mr. Hedgecroft’s social gatherings (I will be serving 3).

Other donors who received recognition are as follows:

  • Salvatore Giancome had all of the dumpsters on the undergraduate campus named in his honor for a $5mm donation and will attend a ceremony marking such once he is on parole.
  • George Mellencup Winthrop XXVII donated $3mm and will have a row of urinals in the Henderson Hall male lavatory named after him. He remarked that he’s not sure he’s worthy of such but embraces this honor nonetheless.
  • Roger and Mitzi Howell will have the stalls in the Ezekial Vance Capote Trans-gender Bath and Reflection Room named after them for their $2mm gift.
  • James Arthur and Catherine Elizabeth McDowell gave $1mm and will have all of the feminine napkin dispensers in both male and female restrooms on campus emblazoned with their names. Catherine said they now feel they have made a difference with this honor.
  • A number of devoted alumni, too numerous and anemic in donation to mention, have shown their loyalty and will be having desks, staplers and hole-punchers named after them (for 1 year and then such will be up for bid again).

There are plenty of structures left on the campus for your name to be on so I ask that you consider such. Note also that there is an upgrade program so if you can only start out at the soap dispenser or trash can level, there are ways to enhance your status.

The George Mellencup Winthrop XXVII Honorary Urinals display a commitment to Currencia U. that all alumni should aspire to and represents the very best of his and the university’s values 

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The “Save Africa from Famine” fundraiser was a huge success that brought in $2.5mm which allowed us to airdrop 3 pallets of Cup-O-Noodles and a case of wet-wipes into the most needy part of Africa. The remainder of the funds went to administrative costs and a rainy-day fund for urgent needs that may arise.

Now to the future.

The Phillip Winthrop Jones building on the Charles Herbert Hedgecroft XVII Center for Business Studies and Human Advancement has now been officially declared obsolete by the Board of Trustees. Built 7 years ago at a cost of $72mm, it was state-of-the-art. But as the demands of education evolve, existing structures like it become outdated and I almost feel ashamed to see our students have to trudge into it each day, as I’m sure you would too. To replace it, we will require a fund drive (named “Great Hearts, Deep Pockets“). It will kick off with a donor’s conference in which anyone who wishes to donate at least $5,000 is invited (the fee to attend has yet to be determined, cash bar).

And as you may know, the proliferation of all of our financial needs has created the necessity for an infrastructure to administer these drives and funds received. I thank the board for its foresightedness in approving a fund drive that will allow us to have a world-class fundraising staff. I am always amazed at, and grateful for, the vision that our board displays when it comes to dealing with financial challenges. I know that the donors who created the administrative burden through their contributions will step up and help us deal with it.

To that end, the Board hired a consulting firm to study and advise how we can further encourage our alumni to show their loyalty and spirit. This firm came up with 2 cutting-edge ideas that we will implement immediately. First, we have decided to offer to our generous donors the option of buying enhanced-fonts for their names when we publish the donor lists in our alumni magazines. For a further showing of loyalty through gifting, their names can be in bold with a pronounced background color. Secondly, we have decided to issue a “non-donors” list. The consultants say this will encourage those who are unsure about whether to support advancing the cause of humanity by contributing to Currencia to do so. The Board wholeheartedly agrees.

Finally, it has come to my attention that society focuses far too much on materialism and the accumulation of money. This must change. Currencia University, through a soon to-be-announced fundraiser, will hold a study and symposium on how our culture can move away from its obsession with acquiring wealth and instead allow us to devote ourselves to advancing the causes that Currencia University does, such as eradicating overseas poverty, ending world famine, eliminating armed conflicts, and addressing global warming, to name just a few. Such an agenda requires a strong financial commitment from you, as I’m sure you’re aware.

St. Igantius said “Act as if everything depended on you.” I and the board read such to mean give profusely to Currencia University. I’m sure you share our interpretation and will donate to help us make the world, and the universe, a better place.

Always in God’s name,

The Very Reverend Phineas Barnum, S.J., CFO, MBA

President

(with clarity provided by I.M. Windee)

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While this would like to be published every time I.M. Windee thinks he has received far too many alma mater solicitations, such would occur every week. So it is posted usually around year-end when these fine institutions appeal to the personal tax-reduction benevolence of donors

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admin @ December 1, 2017

Veteran’s Day: President Lincoln Weighs In

Posted in: Guest Writers | Comments (0)

The following, published here every Memorial Day weekend and Veteran’s Day, is a letter from President Lincoln sent to a mother whose sons died in the Civil War for the Union cause

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President Lincoln realized that sacrifice must be made to preserve the republic

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Executive Mansion,
Washington, Nov. 21, 1864.

Dear Madam,

I have been shown in the files of the War Department a statement of the Adjutant General of Massachusetts that you are the mother of five sons who have died gloriously on the field of battle. I feel how weak and fruitless must be any word of mine which should attempt to beguile you from the grief of a loss so overwhelming. But I cannot refrain from tendering you the consolation that may be found in the thanks of the Republic they died to save. I pray that our Heavenly Father may assuage the anguish of your bereavement, and leave you only the cherished memory of the loved and lost, and the solemn pride that must be yours to have laid so costly a sacrifice upon the altar of freedom.

Yours, very sincerely and respectfully,

A. Lincoln

admin @ November 8, 2017

Ave Atque Vale

Posted in: Ruminations | Comments (0)

Carson ayfc picture 2017#2***************************************************************************

A Pop Warner Valedictorian Missive

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Carson ayfc picture 2017#2

Dear teammates/parents/coaches-

For those of you who may be rusty with your Latin, the heading means “Hail and Farewell.”

My son and I want to thank you all for the privilege of being part of the 2017 Howell Rebels 14 family.

This was his first year of tackle football and the experience taught him great things including discipline, comradery, team spirit, and commitment (amongst many other virtues).

It is very easy and tempting to focus on the won-loss tally. And it certainly woulda been nice if we had a season that took us to the playoffs and beyond. But Coach said it best: it’s about attitude and effort. To that end, this team had a perfect season. From injuries to disappointing scores, you held your heads up high, kept going and played with heart.

And a big part of this team is its support group. Namely, family, friends and the coaches.

So a shout-out to those who supported the team to achieve this highly successful season in the things that matter.

Our political class may preach doom and gloom for the future but if the 2017 Howell Rebels 14 team is any indicator, the future of our society is in great hands.

We wish you the very best and wherever life’s journey takes you, I know you all will be highly successful. And we will always be proud to be a part of the 2017 Howell Rebels 14 family.

-The I.M. Windee Family

admin @ October 30, 2017

Ruminations from the Asbury Park Beach

Posted in: Ruminations | Comments (0)

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The following is published around every July 4th

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I took the family (or they took me) to the Asbury Park beach this weekend.

For those who do not know of it, it is a historically rich seaside city on the Jersey shore.  Its heyday clearly occurred in the first half of last century and by the 1970s, I recall it, as a very young child being taken there by my grandparents and parents, as being virtually dead, at least by the boardwalk.  The Great Society had taken its toll.

But about 10 or so years ago a transformation occurred.  Businesses moved in because, in part, the city government became more friendly (less hostile) to them.  Liberals could take note from such example as they constantly wield the populist sledgehammer against this country’s wealth-creators.

The beach is brimming with people of all walks of life.  And the influx of the alternative-lifestyle (read: gay) community deserves great credit for the transformation that seemed decades away, if at all.

Here are some “beachside observations”:

  • Why are gay men more affectionate to each other than heterosexual couples?
  • I have no problem with the fact that for some women, I cannot compete for their affections like other women can.  I do, though, feel extremely threatened when such women can throw a football far better than I could ever dream of.
  • While slouched and slovenly in my beach chair, a solid 30 pounds overweight and not caring about such, I realized, and pointed out to my wife, that many gay men have everything that a heterosexual woman would want in a man: sensitivity, good grooming, and good looks.  Yet they lack that one critical ingredient: interest in females.  God truly does have a sense of humor, or at least a sense of irony.
  • Was Judy Garland gay?
  • As a big Civil War fan, I can appreciate the reverence for Confederate General Thomas Jackson (perhaps America’s greatest General), but I didn’t realize there were so many followers of his in Asbury Park as evidenced by their “Stonewall” t-shirts.  Perhaps we, as a society, are more connected to history than I thought.
  • Sitting on the beach…closing my eyes…I hear Paul Lynde on Hollywood Squares (a comedian and show I greatly enjoyed watching).
  • Why is the Greek way even considered by anyone? Their fiscal house is a mess! Who would want to emulate that?
  • I think I saw Ellen Degeneres on the beach….2 dozen times.  Or was that Rachel Maddow?
  • I saw some stunningly attractive blondes in (barely) swim wear and I will never understand why they choose to dye their roots dark.Image result for fat guy on beach
I.M. Windee at the beach….in a few years

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  • When I was in college, sitting on the beach meant drinking beers, thinking about where I would eat for dinner, and perhaps try to meet someone of the female gland. Now married with kids, sitting on the beach means chasing my kids to make sure they’re safe, praying I will survive the indigestion festival known as the “family dinner,” and hoping I can slip away to bed before my familial captors find out.
  • My 12-year-old son was going to place a jelly-fish back into the water when the impassioned pleas from a lady stopped him. After all, she argued, being stung by such was worse than the worst sunburn. Fair enough. But I couldn’t help but thinking as we walked away: 1 down, 999,999 to go for this beach. While the longest journey does begin with a single step (or in this case, jellyfish), not only do I think this woman’s journey will not end but I don’t think it will even effectively begin.
  • I truly believe that most lifeguards become drill-sergeants.
  • Thanks to my wife, my family will likely not die from skin disease because of her diligent application of suntan lotion. However, we will likely succumb to aerosol vapor disease and blindness as she saturates us with the stuff to the point we are gasping and it is pouring from our faces.
  • 2 beers and the sun is bliss; 6 beers and the sun is a coma.
  • My 12-year-old son picks up small crabs in the jetties on the beach with utterly no fear of being pinched by their claws, as he was. If I had one placed in my hand, as he wanted to do, I would be screaming hysterically and pass out like Pee Wee Herman carrying the snakes out of the pet store on fire in his first movie.
  • A silhouette of me trekking across the beach carrying coolers, chairs, umbrellas and towels (while the family is skipping care-free with nothing) gives an aura of both the majesty and moral imperative of Moses along with the servitude of a Grand Canyon pack mule.
  • Yes kids, I’m a “bad daddy”: I won’t be your human surfboard.
  • 10 beers and the sun is the morgue (from what I can guess).

Perhaps it’s best that the beach season is only 3 months a year: at middle-age with a family, I don’t think I could handle any longer.

-I.M. Windee

admin @ July 1, 2017