December 5, 2011
BRUCE A. BRENNAN BLOG FROM THE WORLD AND MY MIND
The news as I see it and the views as I want them.
December 5 is … National Sacher Torte Day
At least the Chicago Bears are consistently inconsistent.
Sachertorte (German pronunciation: is a chocolate cake. It was invented by chance by Austrian Jewish Franz Sacher in 1832 for Klemens Wenzel von Metternich in Vienna, Austria. It is one of the most famous Viennese culinary specialties. The Original Sachertorte is only made in Vienna and Salzburg, and it is shipped from both locations. The only place where the Original Sacher Torte is available outside of Austria is in the Sacher shop of Bolzano (Bozen), Italy.
The cake consists of two layers of dense, not overly sweet chocolate cake (traditionally a sponge cake) with a thin layer of apricot jam in the middle and dark chocolate icing on the top and sides. It is traditionally served with whipped cream without any sugar in it, as most Viennese consider the Sachertorte too "dry" to be eaten on its own.
Only twenty shopping days left ‘til Christmas. I like dark color clothing. Silver Bells; soon it will be Christmas Day.
Do you want to die early? Get married and hen divorce the ball and chain. Nearly 2 million people in the United States and many more in the world are impacted by divorce each year. There have been a variety of studies that have hinted that divorce may be linked to the increased chance of an early death, but overall the evidence has been mixed.
David Sbarra, Rita Law, and Robert Portley from the University of Arizona recently published a study to summarize the evidence on the link between divorce and early death. They gathered data from 32 studies involving more than 6.5 million people in 11 countries that included 755,000 divorces and 160,000 deaths.
In general, the researchers found that adults who were divorced were 23% more likely to die younger than their married counterparts. Men had almost twice as high a risk of early death compared to women. People younger than 65 years of age were more at risk following divorce than older people. This pattern was consistent regardless of what country people lived in.
Is marriage worth the risk? I have a long-term moral objection to living together without the benefit of marriage. My objection is not steadfast and not a deal killer. I have softened my objection over the years. Co-habitation does not grant couples all of the legal protections afforded married couples but the trade-off may be worth it.
It is easier to end co-habitation quickly. It is cheaper to end co-habitation. It does not carry the stigma it once did. The laws are changing to grant life partners more legal protections. With one glaring exception, living together is likely a better choice today. People do not die early after splitting up.
If a couple is going to have children, they should be married. The husband and wife should have the same last name. Once children enter into the equation, the desires of the couple should take a backseat to society’s accepted norms. It will be easier on the children if mom, dad and the child have the same last name. That is just a fact; live with it.
Gift cards are a hassle-free gift alternative. They do, however, have a downside. Last year, roughly $8 billion worth of gift cards went unused by those who received them. The State and Federal government is trying to lessen this amount but not always to the citizen’s advantage. States are trying to claim unused gift card values from gift card issuers by using the unclaimed property laws. The State makes a disingenuous effort to find the owner of the unused gift card but that is impossible if purchased with cash, received as a gift or if the person has moved or died.
Governments justify unclaimed property laws by saying the entity should not benefit from a person who has forgotten about an asset. Why should the government get the benefit? The government did not advertise, produce, market or sell the gift card but it wants all of the benefit.
Just a couple of thoughts I had and you should too or at least think about.
BRUCE A. BRENNAN
DEKALB, IL 60115
VISIT ANY OF THE SITES LISTED FOR REVIEW, RESEARCH, ORDERING MY WRITING PRODUCTS OR TO CONTACT ME.
Go to web sites below to buy books by Bruce A. Brennan. It is still a good time to purchase any of my books. The books are interesting and inexpensive reads. My third book is available. It makes a great Christmas present. More information will be forthcoming about my fourth book currently under construction.
www.barnesandnoble.com (do a quick search, Title, my name)
www.smashwords.com Do a Title or author search.
Holmes the Ripper
A Revengeful Mix of Short Fiction
"How far that little candle throws its beams! So shines a good deed in a naughty world." - William Shakespeare