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Monday, February 19
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Thursday, February 22
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by Tumbleweed Smith

I had a friend who died at an early age. He had an extraordinary sense of humor and was always in a good mood. He was quick witted and jokes just rolled off his tongue one after another.

His obituary in the newspaper was completely false. It stated that he had been a professional football player, even though he had never attended a single NFL game. It was full of accomplishments he had never accomplished. I say right on, Danny. Good for you. You left us with a good feeling. You made us laugh instead of cry at your passing.

We send and receive end of the year notes along with Christmas cards. One friend never fails to tell us about all his triumphs. It really amounts to a page and a half of brags. Maybe next year I’ll send one out full of facetious, made-up, completely false statements. Here is the start of my next year’s end of the year letter (I’ll probably add to it during the year):

“2009 was the year when I did some exciting things. I presented a case before the Supreme Court and won. I addressed the United Nations, the American Bar Association, OPEC and the World Bank. I vacationed in Dubai and Mala Mala.

“For diversions, I swam the entire length of the Amazon River and ran the 100 mile Himalayan Marathon. I followed Lindberg’s flight across the Atlantic in the plane I made in my garage. I skied at Telluride and survived an avalanche. I bungee-jumped from the Auckland Tower in

New Zealand.

“I traded my 1935 Auburn Model 851 Boattail Speedster for a 1930

Duesenberg Town Car.

“I won an Oscar, an Emmy, a Grammy, a Tony and earned the title of Most Valuable Player in the National Football League. I produced three movies and made THE POLAR ESPRESS into a Broadway musical.

“I made 40 billion dollars with annuities. Some of the money went to founding a zoo in Antarctica, creating a chair in philanthropy at the University of Texas and a perpetual cup of coffee for the best storyteller at small cafes all across Texas. I funded a new national park in North Dakota and an orphanage in Darfur. I started work on building vacation homes in Hawaii and Maine. I bought Walmart, Neiman-Marcus and Macy’s. I am working on a potent medicine that is a sure cure for AIDS and cancer.

“My winery won sixteen gold medals in world wide competition. My horse won the Kentucky Derby. I had the winning float in the Rose Parade. I qualified for the Olympics in the decathlon. For adventure, I thwarted a pirate attack while taking a trans-Pacific cruise.

“So what did you do this year?”

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