Gary Moss receives 100’s of encounters on this website as well as 100’s of listeners on his podcast. However not knowing who you are can be isolating and lonely. The last ten months have been difficult for the vast majority of us. For Gary, the wizard of words and word paraphernalia this has been a most difficult time. Since the late 80s in the last century (1980) Gary has played Scrabble every day. Scrabble earned him some bread and butter, but it was really his connection with friends, and new acquaintances that created a social circle for him. For those who know Gary, may understand he is not an outdoors person and things like walking, running, lifting weights, or any other form of exercise is not part of his MO. Yet, give him a Scrabble Board and he is in his glory.
Since March and the closing down of social gatherings, Gary has become depleted. Although he has worked to keep his word knowledge growing and to assist you and yours through this time, it is now getting to be more difficult to get motivated. So, on his behalf, I am asking you, as his website editor and his podcast producer please connect with him. Share with him what you want to know, need to know, and would appreciate his guidance on. He just needs a kick in the ASS and you can do it!
Gary is always the motivator and the guide now it is your turn to push him in the right direction. We can all hope and pray that soon the Pandemic will be winding down and Scrabble Clubs will once again open their doors, and one on one Scrabble Games at your home or coffee shop will begin to take place. But until that time we need to lend a hand through social distancing.
Get excited 2020 is about to end, however, nothing will change at the stroke of midnight unless you choose to. A year ago, none of us (except for the Scientist) ever suspected that COVID19 would change our lives exponentially. The VIRUS grew and threatened us (still is) and like young children, we waited for the adults in charge to provide us with the right direction to take. Instead, our Government let us down. Now we are suffering, however, we have some choices!
- Wear a face mask properly covering your nose and mouth keeping your germs with you and not being spread to those around you.
- Wash your hands or sanitize them regularly the virus is in the air and landing on surfaces we are touching, and we need to be vigilant and wash it away.
- Social distancing is imperative and as exciting it may be to travel and visit beautiful warm beaches/or see family, we are encouraging this disease to spread. STAY THE HELL HOME.
- Reach out to the health officials and take the vitamins and supplements that may fend off the virus or at least keep you healthier and more able to fight the disease. Vitamin C, D3, Magnesium, are just a few. Also eating a more balanced diet and eliminating or reducing alcohol consumption.
- Prepare for a new way of living life going forward. Masks may be needed for the future, and if they eliminate contagious germs won’t that make you smile?
I am not clairvoyant; therefore I cannot say definitively that COVID19 was what our World needed to get back on track, but I can tell you we have witnessed positive changes and we must continue to create POSITIVITY.
- It is OK to disagree but do so with facts that support your thinking and speech.
- Lower the anger volume and use tones that encourage others to listen to hear, not listen to rebuttal.
- Take stock of your reflection in the mirror. Have you given yourself the opportunity to do something for yourself, self-care is paramount and not just during a crisis!
- It is never too late to make a change, even in a CREDIT CARD WORLD, we are not plastic!
- It will take more than watching the Ball Drop-in Times Square to create change, and eating 12 grapes at the stroke of midnight (Spain) may only favor your salivary senses.
- In Columbia, they carry empty suitcases around the block wishing for a year of travel.
- In Denmark, they throw plates and glasses to rid the demons of the previous year. (that could be expensive.)
- The Finnish “predict the coming year by casting molten tin into a container of water, then interpreting the shape the metal takes after hardening. A heart or ring means a wedding, while a ship predicts travel and a pig declares there will be plenty of food.”
- Panama burns replicas of “bad” influential people in effigy, warding off the bad spirits!
- The Scots build bonfires and swing giant fireballs to symbolize the sun to purify the new year.
- In the Philippines, people wear Polka-Dots for good luck. (I may try that!)
- In Brazil wearing red underwear to usher in the new year is a suggestion of good luck. (I may have to go shopping at “Fredericks of Hollywood”.)
- And in Greece hanging an onion on your front door is a symbol of rebirth for the new year.
Whether you follow one of these traditions or have one of your own remember, stay safe, let us all make it into 2021 making good choices as we become kinder to ourselves and each other.
How does one Show their Thanks?
Is it in the words we utter or spell out on the scrabble board, or is it expressed best in a dazzling gift? (What dazzles one person may not have the same effect on another.)
What a beautiful world we could be living in if we choose to be thankful for what we have. Some people may have a lot more, and others a lot less, and until we stop looking at the DAZZLE that distorts our view, we will never be satisfied. Individually we must find that inner feeling that propels us to take a step forward. If we slip and fall we need someone to help us up so we can take that next step and show our thanks.
Don’t be selfish in providing a hand to someone who may be in need, and do not hesitate to grab hold of the extended arm. Picking someone up is the human thing to do, and allowing someone the privilege of assistance maybe all the thanks they need or want.
Use this Thanksgiving as your chance to make a difference. Start each day with joy, find that little spark that may be hiding inside, and let it be seen through your smile, your eyes, your words, and the extension of your arm and heart.
(Karen KIKI Moss Hale – editor – newclevelandradio.net)
STEVEN VALDEZ provides his theory
Growing up in the West, the majority of my knowledge of U.S. Geography consisted only of what existed on this side of the Rocky Mountains. The Midwest and Eastern states all seemed to blend together in my mind and remembering which state was which was something I really struggled with.
Memory is directly tied to the ability to learn. If I study really hard and ace a test on the states, but two weeks later fail a pop quiz on the same material, then acing that test didn’t necessarily mean that I learned the material. Only that I crammed all that info into my head to hopefully be able to spit it back out at test time.
That’s where mnemonics come in. It’s a method of remembering certain things by tying them to something else easier to recall. For example, HOMES is a mnemonic device for remembering the Great Lakes: Huron, Ontario, Michigan, Erie, and Superior. So when it came time to study the states of the Northeastern Seaboard I made up my own.
“Many new hairstyles visit mass. Really incredible! Not just dull or messy.”
Starting at Maine and heading south to Maryland you have:
“Many (Maine) new (New) hairstyles (Hampshire) visit (Vermont) mass (Massachusetts). Really (Rhode) incredible (Island)! Not (New) just (Jersey) dull (Delaware) or messy (Maryland).”
For a time I couldn’t remember the difference between infer and imply. One refers to the person speaking and the other to the person listening. So I came up with a baseball analogy to help me remember:
“The pitcher implies. The fielder infers.”
Therefore, the one speaking implies and the one listening infers.
Mnemonics have been used from grade schools to Med Schools (I’m sure your doctor still remembers a few). I think this technique should be encouraged in children of all ages. It’s a fun, effective way to learn that will follow them throughout their lives.
TTFN (ta-ta for now).
Tomorrow, September 1, 2020, takes us into the last quarter of 2020. This is not a time to just sit around wishing you could succeed at something special, now is the time to take that first step towards achievement. Gary Moss is Scrabble Maven and what it ignites him is his passion for words which in his case led him to the Scrabble World. Many of you that read his blogs and or listen to his podcasts can take his suggestions and apply them to your life and passion for success.
Our parents, Dorothy and Harmon Moss, never used the words, “I Can’t”. If there was something they wanted to do they figured out how to create a method to success. Let me state here, success does not mean financial gain. although that is a nice bonus, success is taking the steps to reach the stars. Each step gets you closer and even if you slip and fall, learn from the misstep and brush yourself and start over again.
This website was designed for Gary Moss, also known as Letterman, to share his journey through life. At the age of 77, he set out on a solo cross country and back Sunset Trip playing scrabble along the way, meeting new people. as well as visiting with family and friends along the path. On occasion, he went off-path taking a fork in the road to experience something new. His adventures (or something similar) could be yours but you must make the choice, the choice cannot be made for you. Over the last 365 days, Gary has written a new blog each week, and as his editor, I get the privilege to embellish them with photo icons and quotes bringing them to life for you the reader.
Together we have produced 40 podcasts and we are on schedule to record one weekly. Even when one is as passionate as Gary is, taking a break from podcasting is needed to get your thoughts together. (so occasionally we miss a recording.) However, having a desire to share his love of words has helped Gary during this Pandemic time. When many have found themselves becoming couch potatoes with nowhere to go and no one to see, Gary has taken to creating more Word tools for you if you are interested in improving your game and winning more than losing.
We don’t have a crystal ball to tell us what the future brings but we can prepare for the future by getting up from the couch and making today the FIRST DAY OF THE REST OF OUR LIVES!
I encourage everyone to take a moment each week and read the Blogs written by Gary Moss (JFTSOI). A year ago (2019), Gary ventured out on his 77 Sunset Trip. Through Blogs, and Podcasts he shared his experience and his CAN DO/WILL DO attitude. Although he may be using SCRABBLE Words as his bait to reel you in, he is living each day pursuing his passion. Can you say the same?
Even if you are not a competitive SCRABBLE player the words that develop into sentences with meaning may help you in your daily pursuits of becoming the best version of YOU. 2020 has placed numerous obstacles in our path. However, just as important it is to VOTE in November, it is just important for you to get through these times despite the Pandemic, Global Warming causing weather hazards, and unemployment due to Pandemic and more!</p>
We must have a can do it attitude and if you need a push come back to this website for a Kick in the Ass Moment!
January 1, 2020, the beginning of a new day, month, year, and decade. With that comes a few changes. If you look at the menu structure of this website, we have started a new page for the 2020 Blogs. You can still peruse through the 2019 writings, and we recommend that you do as you reacquaint yourself with some of the knowledge that Gary Moss shares on this site.
I began working with Gary on this website in August 2019. Before that time, he had successfully created a website through APPLE software, which is no longer available and supported (that’s the technology for you.) He asked me for some guidance, and I chose to come on board to design and maintain this website and grow the business of newclevelandradio.net
I don’t have to tell you that our form of communication has drastically changed in the last 20 years, and even more so over the previous 50. Yet, many of us Baby Boomers and offsprings of the Boomers continually challenging themselves to keep up with the world before it spins out of control.
One thing has not changed, and that is the use of words, whether they are written, spoken, or placed on a game board like Scrabble™. I want to encourage you to use your words this year to become part of a welcoming society. If Scrabble™ Clubs can be friendly and welcoming to all, we should be able to carry over this humanity outside of the game as well. Let us be an example for others and use our words wisely. Let’s create a BINGO of HUMAN KINDNESS.
Thank you for following JFTSOI. Gary Moss has been in the Scrabble™ world for almost 30 years, and before that always shared his love of words with friends and family. Like his father and paternal grandfather, he began writing at an early age both in prose and other literary forms. I am proud to be working with him on his website and being the first in line to engulf his writing that might be about the game of Scrabble™ but is so much more about living life to the fullest.
Gary, like you and I, have journeyed through life experiencing good, bad, and mediocre situations. However, despite the ups and downs and the in-betweens, he uses his love and passion for the game to touch others. We often discuss this in his weekly podcasts that when you love something, you need to cherish it and embody the feelings that make you feel good. Allowing the endorphins in your body to surge, when that smile develops across your face, share it with those you know and as well as the stranger you don’t.
Words can cause delight as well as opposing feelings of sadness. When speaking, writing, and using your dialogue to communicate, stop, and hear yourself first. Know it is ok, to say you are sorry, Sorry means:
I WAS WRONG!
MY 3RD LOVE
I don’t exactly know where I’ll find the words to express how I feel about Scrabble, because you see, one would think that I’ve spent all of my vocabulary on the board over the past 19 competitive years. All the same, here is an attempt to reveal my love.
To say that I have an intense, passionate and eternal relationship with the game and it’s intricacies, is truly an understatement. Not only does playing and studying consume most of my retired day, but I dream about words and games, almost nightly.
Although English was not my home language, we spent many a winter night playing scrabble by the fire side on the farm in the Orange Free State in South Africa.
A few decades later, a friend laughed when I asked if I could join them in a game of scrabble on Fish Hoek beach, thinking, what does an Afrikaans speaking farm girl know about scrabble!! Immediately I lost my popularity 😂😂😂, but gained some respect.
In 2001 I spent a few months in Ireland, where I also completed my BA degree at the age of 45. At the library I saw a notice inviting anyone to call this phone number, if interested in scrabble. A geriatric lady drove from the other side of town to fetch me for a game at her home and driving me back very late that night, informed me that she was collecting me on Sunday for my first tournament.
How amazed I was that these (mostly older) folk, knew such odd words, mostly surprised at even the 2 and 3 letter words, I had never seen or heard of in my life. I yearned to get there. At the end of the tournament, I was presented with a 2 and 3 letter word book, with front and back hooks and all.
Consuming these words as if they were part of my degree, I called my beach friend in South Africa and told him about ‘club scrabble’. He inquired back home and when I got back to SA we joined a club and soon we were both in the top 40 and then top 10 masters.
Due to a back problem, my medical boarding afforded me much time dedicated to playing and studying. Thus far, I have competed in South Africa, Ireland, Zambia (a few times), Tanzania, USA (a few times), London, Torquay and of course on Facebook.
Humbly but gratefully, I attribute much grace to being the highest rated female scrabble player in South Africa at present, fluctuating in and out of late 1500s to 1650s. Though at the age of almost 64, with aging memory, I am aiming at 1700 ratings and a few more countries before I turn 70.
After all these years, I still get tense sitting across the board from friends who are also now family to me, who for a while, become the enemy in the battle of words, strategy, psychology and intimidation. This of course does not aid in relieving back pain, which at time reduces me to tears. Resorted to having a drink or two to help me relax, it’s frowned upon, but hey, who cares!? It also takes a back frame, back strap, anti inflammatory, cortisone and pain killers, but play scrabble I will.
To all Scrabblers, I’m so grateful to you all for life’s lessons, on how to be or not to be, how to play and not to play, how to win and how to lose. We can just try to better ourselves and not try to be better than anyone else. Give credit to where it’s due.
Respect to you all. GWEN REA (GEWEN REA) maar ook baie verloor. (Meaning, I have won and just as often, I’ve lost.) The best of all is, I’ve gained friends. And I’ve gained friends, world wide.