WoodWeek – 18 January 2017

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Welcome back to 2017 - a brand New Year! Things are looking good in the market … but it is very dry out there. The weather bomb hitting the country might help if it brings enough rain. It’s good to be back – but as much of the mainstream media dries up in the break, we’ve got a few different stories for you this week – wasp sting lifesavers and heart savers.

Looking to markets – structural S1 logs in the domestic market averaged $117 a tonne in December, the highest level since June 2014, according to AgriHQ's monthly survey of exporters, forest owners and saw millers. S1 logs averaged $113/t this past year, the highest level since 1994 when it averaged $118/t, AgriHQ said.

Record high net migration and low interest rates are putting pressure on the nation's housing market, driving up prices and spurring construction activity. Data released by Statistics NZ today showed residential building consents passed 30,000 for the first time in 11 years in the 12 months through October.

In terms of production volumes for 2016, strong domestic demand for residential construction and log exports contributed to harvest volumes reaching the highest levels since 2014, according to the latest Ministry of Primary Industries Situation and Outlook for Primary Industries report.

If you haven’t yet registered for the next key conference in our industry – hurry up – everyone else has! Click on http://forestsafety.events and get your people onto it. Very soon there will be some key announcements about what’s new coming at this summit.

The logging specialists at EMS Rotorua have brought together 10 years of experience in their latest new product for cable loggers - the Hawkeye grapple carriage. The new design of the carriage is ideally suited to be operated with their EMS Harvestline yarder.

Bryan Heslop still clearly remembers the time he administered life-saving adrenaline to a forestry worker who had been stung hundreds of times by wasps.

Early last year, a former All Blacks doctor John Mayhew was fighting for his life in hospital. He’d suffered from a sudden cardiac arrest at the gym, resulting in an induced coma for four days. It was only the quick thinking of a fellow gym-goer that saved his life: they had raced to a nearby medical centre and grabbed an AED.

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Framing demand brings record high prices

Buoyant housing demand elevates structural log prices to 22-year high in 2016 - Buoyant residential building activity has pushed up the average price for top structural logs this year rise to the highest in more than two decades.

The average price for structural S1 logs in the domestic market held at $117 a tonne in December, the highest level since June 2014, according to AgriHQ's monthly survey of exporters, forest owners and saw millers. S1 logs averaged $113/t this year, the highest level since 1994 when it averaged $118/t, AgriHQ said.

Record high net migration and low interest rates are putting pressure on the nation's housing market, driving up prices and spurring construction activity. Data released by Statistics NZ today showed residential building consents passed 30,000 for the first time in 11 years in the 12 months through October.

"Higher quality structural logs went through one of their better years on record," AgriHQ analyst Reece Brick said in his report. "The momentum in the New Zealand domestic log market has not slowed at all through November and early December, and there's little to indicate this situation will change through the early months of next year.

"Looking forward, this positivity is set to remain in the short term. Market participants have already indicated that domestic contracts for structural logs are set to lift a little in Q1, driven by firm demand from the housing construction sector."

AgriHQ's Brick said domestic log supply remained tight for local mills.

"While there are enough logs coming out to keep mills satisfied for now, there certainly aren't any inventories building at mills," he said.

Damage to roads and other infrastructure following the Kaikoura earthquake last month had added to supply constraints through Canterbury and some areas further north, he said. Elsewhere in the domestic market, the price of unpruned logs remained stable while the price for pruned P1 logs fell to $176/t from $178/t last month as a drop in international demand led to higher volumes being available in the local market, AgriHQ said.

"Even though the lesser volumes of pruned logs heading to ports took some pressure away from domestic market pricing, it still enjoyed its best year since the mid-1990s," Brick said.

P1 logs traded at an average value of $179/t compared to annual averages of between $127/t-to-$161/t in the decade prior, he said.

Meanwhile, the price of most export logs declined over the past month, AgriHQ said.

"Shipping rates were largely in line with the previous month, however there are signals that upwards movement could be on the cards," Brick said in his report.

Source: BusinessDesk via Scoop

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Positive year expected for wood markets

The outlook for forestry is looking significantly better than a year ago, when high log inventories in the key China market were raising concerns.

China log exports have picked up again and forestry volumes are growing, with some early harvesting taking place to take advantage of strong domestic and export demand, say industry observers.

"At the moment, our members wouldn't want to be in there saying all is rosy and we're quite confident," said New Zealand Forest Owners Association chief executive David Rhodes.

"But there's nothing on the horizon that suggests it's not a good healthy market we can expect to be maintained."

In 2016, strong domestic demand for residential construction and log exports contributed to harvest volumes reaching the highest levels since 2014, according to the latest Ministry of Primary Industries Situation and Outlook for Primary Industries report.

In the coming five years and beyond, forest product exports are expected to continue to be driven by increasing harvest volumes, with the ministry's Wood Availability Forecast scenarios suggesting the harvest could range between 29 million cubic m and 42 million cu m annually during the next five years.

These scenarios imply, depending on domestic consumption, an annual harvest rising to slightly over 31 million cubic metres by 2021, says MPI.

The industry is expecting a smoothing out of production over the next two to three years. This will be the result of forest owners adjusting to a slight drop in production by harvesting trees a little earlier than usual to meet market demand. The dip will be followed by a major surge in production from 2020-2025, according to the ministry forecasts. "What we are seeing is a significant smoothing out of production and we're projecting a much more even flow of timber coming through," said Mr Rhodes.

More >>

Photo: David Rhodes, NZ Forest Owners Association

Source: NZ Herald

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Rapid reaction to stings saved worker's life

Bryan Heslop still clearly remembers the time he administered life-saving adrenaline to a forestry worker who had been stung hundreds of times by wasps.

It was thought the man had stepped on a rotten log and disturbed a wasp nest while working in a forestry block near St Arnaud. The wasps had stung his legs, gotten stuck behind his chaps and continued to sting him hundreds of times.

Heslop arrived at the site and said the man was lying on the ground, convulsing and delirious.

"They had put a survival blanket over him and he was just shaking, he'd had a massive reaction to it, I thought he was just about done."

The wasp stings had triggered a severe reaction known as anaphylaxis.

Heslop jumped into action and injected the man with adrenaline from a kit he had in his vehicle. He remembers thinking it didn't have much of an effect and that he felt helpless waiting for emergency services to arrive.

A forestry worker himself, Heslop was working near St Arnaud in January 2004, when he got a call from another forestry crew working in the Korere Valley. They knew he had training to administer adrenaline.

"I shot off and happened to be the first one to get there, he was in a real bad way," Heslop said.

After 15 minutes, a Department of Conservation worker arrived with an EpiPen and oxygen and gave the stung worker another dose of adrenaline.

"It took a heap of adrenaline to snap him out of it, he had something like 250 wasp stings," Heslop said.

More >>

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EMS launch new grapple carriage

The logging specialists at EMS Rotorua have brought together 10 years of experience in their latest new product for cable loggers - the Hawkeye grapple carriage. The new design of carriage is ideally suited to be operated with their EMS Harvestline yarder.

Specification:
Weight Including Grapple: 1200 KG (2640 Ibs)
Engine: Kohler 350 Single Cylinder Diesel 5.5 kW (7.5 hp)
Grapple: EMS, High Tensile grapple tines, mechanical open & close operated from control screen
Grapple max opening: 1300mm (52 Inches)
Rotator: 360 degree rotation. Electric over hydraulic operated from control screen
Battery: 12 V, with internal charging circuit from engine
Camera Equipment: IP technology via wireless Ethernet to base machine

Features:
• Light weight but strong design and manufacture utilising high tensile materials.
• 360 degree grapple rotation & open and close on the fly.
• Innovative touch screen and easy to use control system.
• No rope clamps.
• Integral LED lighting.
• Easy to install onto lines.
• Suitable for any yarding system.
• Greatly reduced line wrap issues.
• Simple mechanical strong HT grapple. • Integrated digital camera system with infrared.
• Accusump protection for loss of engine oil pressure.
• Integral charging circuit (no more flat camera batteries).
• Generous sized induction hardened fully greasable pins and bushings.
• Innovative link for cameras and control functions via wireless ethernet.

To see a video of the carriage operating click here http://emsnewzealand.co.nz/hawkeye/

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Scion appoints new CE

In late December Scion board chair, Tony Nowell, announced the appointment of Dr Julian Elder as the Crown Research Institute’s incoming Chief Executive. He will succeed current Chief Executive Dr Warren Parker upon his retirement from the role in early 2017.

Dr Elder has had leadership roles for large-scale civil infrastructure projects in waste treatment, renewables, telecommunications, energy and water. He has a successful track record leading multi-stakeholder complex ventures, delivering sustained profitable growth to utility, contracting and professional services businesses across Asia Pacific.

Mr Nowell says Dr Elder brings extensive commercial experience in business development, performance and risk management, most recently having lead WEL Networks Limited from 2007 to 2014 and the associated Waikato Networks Limited from 2011 to 2014, doubling the size of the combined business during his tenure. Prior to that role he was Chief Engineer at Watercare Services from 2005 to 2007.

Dr Elder is passionate about health and safety, commercial excellence and customer service. He is recognised for innovation and thought leadership and has significant experience in commercialising technology and raising investment to support this.

He graduated from University of Auckland with a PhD in Electrical Engineering in 1984. Dr Elder is aalso a Chartered Member of the Institute of Directors, and current director of Flick Electric Company, Soda, Enterprise Angels and until recently a director of Strada Corporation and NZ Wind Farms.

Dr Elder is excited to join Scion at this positive time for the forest industry and as Scion steps-up its focus on commercialising the technology it develops. Scion is also undertaking major development initiatives to further modernise its facilities and establish its Rotorua campus as an innovation hub for the forest industry, advanced manufacturing of biomaterials, and commercialisation of related technologies.

Photo: Dr Julian Elder
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New online course for health and safety

A new health and safety course, offered online through a collaboration between WorksafeReps and Open Polytechnic, will help workplace health and safety representatives gain the skills they need to promote safer work practices.

The Initial Health & Safety Representative Training course is NZQA accredited, and is designed to meet the requirements of new health and safety legislation introduced in April 2016.

According to WorkSafe New Zealand statistics, between 2011-2016 the number of fatal work-related incidents (excluding maritime, aviation and road crash related deaths) has continued to remain high, with sectors such as agriculture, construction and forestry reporting the highest number of workplace deaths. Change is needed.

WorksafeReps is the health and safety training arm of the New Zealand Council of Trade Unions. A core value of this training is that all workers are entitled to safe workplaces and practices, which is why NZCTU has historically been at the forefront of providing this training. Richard Wagstaff, President of the NZCTU says that education is "a key part to unlocking the door to safer and healthier workplaces."

Open Polytechnic, New Zealand’s specialist provider of online and distance learning, developed the online course for WorksafeReps, taking the content of their two day face- to-face course, and turning it into an engaging online learning experience which includes video scenarios and animated content to explain key concepts, and help learners relate what they are learning to real-life situations.

The course is delivered through Open Polytechnic’s iQualify platform, which is device responsive, meaning it can be accessed from a computer or any mobile device.

“One of the biggest benefits of delivering the Initial Health & Safety Representative Training course online is that it means workers now have another quality option to augment the existing training structure, and can undertake this work flexibly and remotely to fit in around other commitments,” says Open Polytechnic Chief Executive Dr Caroline Seelig.

Paid leave to complete the training is built into the legislation and having an online option does not reduce this entitlement.

Open Polytechnic also provides accreditation for the course, which includes assessment of the learning outcomes.

To find out more about completing the Initial Health & Safety Representative Training course online, head to: www.worksafereps.co.nz

About WorksafeReps - For more information about Worksafe Reps – www.worksafereps.co.nz

About Open Polytechnic - Open Polytechnic is New Zealand’s specialist provider of open and distance learning, enrolling over 30,000 mainly part-time students per year. The majority of students are adult learners combining work and study, making the Open Polytechnic one of New Zealand’s major educators of people in the workforce.

Website: www.openpolytechnic.ac.nz





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ANZ Commodity Price Index

The ANZ Commodity Price Index rose 0.7% m/m in December, largely due to the continuing comeback story of dairy prices over the second half of 2016. The December rise in the index was the eighth in a row, driving it 19% higher over the course of 2016.

The NZD Commodity Price Index posted a 2.0% m/m lift in December. This was the fifth month-on-month rise in a row and the fourth monthly gain above 2%. The NZD’s continued descent against the USD and GBP in December was the key helping hand. The NZD TWI actually rose 0.1% m/m. however, implying little exporter relief elsewhere.

Non-dairy commodity prices were the disappointment, falling 1.9% m/m. Only 3 of the 12 non-dairy commodities in the index rose in December, with falls centred mainly in the meat and fibre group. However, many sectors saw price improvement throughout the course of 2016 (total non-dairy +7% y/y), though NZD moves continued to weigh on local returns in many cases.

In terms of sector specifics:

  • Dairy prices rose for the seventh time in a row, up another 3.9% m/m in December. Tight global milk supplies and improved Chinese import demand continued to be the main drivers. All dairy-based products improved in December, led by butter (+6.2% m/m), followed closely by whole-milk power (+4.8%). The resurgence in these products now has prices up over 44% on last December. Cheese prices lifted a solid 3.1%, while skim milk and casein lifted slightly, up 0.5%.

  • The largest fall was a 6.2% drop in wool prices in what has been a tough 2016/17 season so far (down 26% y/y). The main reason has been a lack of interest from China, which accounted for 50% of exports in 2015/16. There have been numerous suggestions as to why Chinese demand has been weaker, ranging from lower end-product demand in Europe/UK, a weaker RMB, changed sourcing patterns towards cheaper product from the UK and Mongolia, liquidation of local cotton stocks, and general high prices last year leading to fibre substitution and changed local fashion trends. With little data, it’s difficult to say with any certainty what factors are the most important. Whatever the main driver, a 55% fall in year-to-date Chinese exports is telling.

  • Beef prices also fell 5.5% in December with higher US supply weighing on import prices and some trader nervousness over holiday sales. Lamb prices also fell 2.4% m/m – the first fall of 2016. Still, in- market lamb prices were 20% higher than the year before due to tight tradable supplies and solid demand outside of Europe.

  • Forestry prices posted a small gain (+0.6% m/m) in December. Log prices continue to find support from China and local construction activity. Pulp prices remained steady. The outlook for early 2017 is supportive as surplus inventories have been snapped up by strong Chinese demand.

  • Elsewhere there were only small moves. Seafood posted a small 0.2% m/m gain and finished the year 13% higher. Aluminium prices fell slightly (-0.6%), but this was off two sizeable 4+% gains in the previous months. Horticulture finished the year 8% higher and remains well positioned for another very profitable 2017 harvest.



Source: ANZ

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Become a heart saver

Lucky doctor joins the "Become-a-Heart-Saver" campaign to make more AEDs available for everyday Kiwis - In April last year, Warriors doctor and former All Blacks doctor John Mayhew was fighting for his life in hospital.

He’d suffered from a sudden cardiac arrest while working out at his local gym, which left him in an induced coma for four days, surrounded by frightened family.

It was only the quick thinking of a fellow gym-goer that saved his life: someone raced to the medical centre nearby to grab an AED – an automated external defibrillator. He hears they ripped off his shirt, on the floor of the gym, applied the pads, followed the instructions and resuscitated him with two hearty shocks.

“After three days in a coma I woke up in a very surprised state in intensive care, to be told by the nurse what had happened. From my medical knowledge, I realise just how lucky I was to have been resuscitated,” says Mayhew. “The AED used on me was from the local medical centre 300m down the road – there wasn’t one at the gym. I resolved this by buying an AED for them as soon as I could, realising the absolute need for them in as many places as possible.”

The AED is what saved his life, and now he is on a mission to make sure there are more of them available to everyday Kiwis.

Today, Dr John Mayhew announces his part in the Become a Heart Saver campaign. For the next 12 months, the Become a Heart Saver campaign will be giving away an AED each month to a community group, sports group, school or organisation who deserves it. Groups will be able to enter online at www.heartsaver.co.nz and winners will be chosen the month following by a team of judges, including Dr John Mayhew.

“Sudden cardiac arrest affects five New Zealanders a day. It’s the leading cause of death in New Zealand, killing four times that of the national road toll,” Dr Mayhew says. “The scary thing is, sudden cardiac arrest can happen to anyone, at any time, with no warning. I was a pretty fit and healthy guy – I would run once a week and regularly go to the gym. You just can’t predict who it will happen to.”

An AED, in conjunction with CPR, is what will give you the best possible chance of survival from a sudden cardiac arrest. Best practice standards say we should have 10,000 AEDs in New Zealand – currently we have 6000, a number Dr John Mayhew is out to change in his ambassador role with the Become a Heart Saver campaign.

Since his near-death experience, Mayhew has purchased three AEDs, for the boot of his car and his practices, and encouraged more than five friends to do the same. Now he’s asking other New Zealanders to do the same.

“Why would you take the risk of not having one?” says Mayhew. “If you are a school, sports club, recreational club, workplace or a public place where lots of people go, you should look at investing in an AED. It could be the difference between saving someone’s life or not.”

“For the best chance of survival, you need to use an AED on a patient within four minutes of them going into sudden cardiac arrest, so you want one about a four-minute round trip away,” says Heart Saver managing director, experience volunteer fire-fighter and EMT, Mike Mander. It takes around nine minutes for an ambulance to arrive in most cases. You can find your nearest AED using the free AED Locations app.

“The best thing is, anyone can use an AED – you don’t have to be medically qualified. You just have to know where your nearest one is and get it to your patient as quickly as possible,” says Mander. "We just need more of them available."



ABOUT AEDs - An AED (automated external defibrillator) is a portable medical device that can automatically assess a patient’s heart rhythm. It judges whether defibrillation is needed and, if required, administers an electric shock through the chest wall to the heart. AEDs produce voice or visual prompts to guide the user through the rescue process and can be operated by anyone. They will not shock unless the patient is in cardiac arrest. AEDs start at around $1700+gst.

ABOUT THE BECOME A HEART SAVER CAMPAIGN - As part of the Become a Heart Saver campaign, which aims to get more AEDs available to everyday Kiwis, Heart Saver will be giving one AED away each month for the next year. Community groups, schools, recreational clubs, sports clubs and other community organisations can enter at www.heartsaver.co.nz. A recipient will be chosen by judges, including John Mayhew, the month following and groups can enter as many consecutive months as they like.

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More companies adopt FOLS after endorsements

Several forestry contracting businesses have completed a move over to FOLS recently.

The following businesses have officially signed on all of their operators to the skills verification program. This move follows the initiatives of HVP Plantations (HVP) and the Australian Forest Contractors Association (AFCA), who recently endorsed FOLS:
  • Austimber Harvesting Gippsland
  • Forestry Services Logging Pty Ltd
  • Galzon Logging
  • Retreev Pty Ltd
  • Richards Harvesting & Haulage

All five companies undertake work for HVP Plantations, which this year endorsed FOLS as their preferred tool to manage operators’ high risk competencies.

John Dodson, HVP’s Human Resources General Manager, said a further 13 forestry contracting businesses are also well advanced in the process of moving their operators on to FOLS, which will see a total of 18 contracting businesses with over 140 operators moving over to FOLS in a six month period.

“HVP has assisted contractors financially and by working one-on-one with them to bring their training and currency records on to FOLS.”

“With FOLS, we now have a consistent and accessible tool for working with contractors on their training and workplace health and safety requirements,” said Dodson.

The first HVP contractor to complete their transition to FOLS was Austimber, which is also a member of AFCA.

Ian Reid, Director of Austimber and former Chairman of the AFCA Board, said he is very pleased with the service FOLS has provided the business.

“In a world where systems and processes tend to be made more complicated it is pleasing to see a system become available that is easy and simple to use. It is such an effective system for managing the skills of employees and supporting safety in the workplace.”

“A key benefit is how it has helped us to manage risk. Through FOLS we are able to quickly know who is trained and skilled to undertake particular activities,” said Reid.

AFCA became advocates of FOLS this year, signing an agreement with ForestWorks to provide their members with discounted FOLS fees.

Diana Lloyd, General Manager of ForestWorks, said the interest in FOLS has increased following the endorsement by HVP and AFCA.

“Word is spreading about the benefits of FOLS and we are pleased to see so many businesses getting behind the initiative.”

“We are committed to further developing FOLS, to provide a national platform for industry to demonstrate their safe practice standards and professionalism,” said Lloyd.

FOLS is a national industry-led program, managed by ForestWorks. For more information about the FOLS Skills Verification Program, visit fols.forestworks.com.au

Source: ForestWorks

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Coroner's findings on Lincoln Kidd's death

A coroner's report into a 20-year-old Levin forestry worker's death is expected to be released later in January.

Lincoln Kidd, 20, died when he was hit by a tree on the Aratangata forestry block between Foxton and Levin, while working for Paul Burr Contracting Ltd, on December 19, 2013.

An inquest into Kidd's death began on November 22 in Palmerston North, but was rescheduled as coroner Tim Scott wanted to hear from one of Kidd's former employers, Murray Spiers.

Scott said he wanted to know whether Kidd had received training during the four years he worked for Spiers to determine his level of knowledge about tree felling.

In November, the coroner said it was unknown whether Kidd understood the two-tree rule, which required workers to be at least two tree lengths away from a felling.

Kidd had been made to read the health and safety codes of practice before he started work at Paul Burr Contracting Ltd, but no records of training were kept.

During the November hearing, it was revealed that Paul Burr Contracting Ltd had no record of training him and could not prove whether he knew the health and safety standards.

Spiers spoke at the two-hour resumption of the inquest in mid-December 2016.

At the conclusion of the inquest, the coroner reserved his findings until January.

Source: Stuff News

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Thanks to FICA Sponsors

We would like to thank all of the organisations who support FICA, which in turn works to promote business growth and improved safety and efficiency amongst forestry contractors for the benefit of New Zealand's Forestry Industry.

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Minter Ellison Rudd Watts
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Breakthrough with new CLT application

Breakthrough for Exterior Cross Laminated Timber - New Zealand exterior wood specialist Abodo has achieved another first – an exterior CLT panel made exclusively from thermally modified radiata pine.

The CLT panel is made up of hundreds of 150x50 sections of Abodo’s Vulcan Cladding – a thermally modified radiata pine product, which is engineered with a consistent vertical grain for superior weathering. Vulcan is typically used for high performance cladding and exterior doors.

The CLT panel at 3.0m high, 2.5m wide and 150mm thick is being used for Abodo’s new showroom and factory sign, at 62 Ascot Rd, Mangere, Auckland. The panel itself was pressed and the Abodo logo CNC routered by Xlam in Nelson, and it has been protected with Sioo:x, a new generation weathering coating imported by Abodo from Sweden. Scioo:x will react with the thermally modified pine to create a toughened exterior which will silver off over time, in keeping with the factory and showroom building.

“We have built our new showroom sign from solid engineered thermally modified pine, as a testament to our belief in new generation wood technology – we will monitor the performance of the sign over time, with a view to commercialise exterior CLT for specific applications in the future” states Marketing Director and Founder, Daniel Gudsell.

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Jobs


Buy and Sell


... and finally ... Humor for a New Year

Here's one to make your brain work

Ode to the Spell Checker

Eye halve a spelling chequer,
It came with my pea sea,
It plainly marques four my revue,
Miss steaks eye kin not sea.

Eye strike a key and type a word,
And weight four it two say,
Weather eye am wrong oar write,
It shows me straight a weigh.

As soon as a mist ache is maid,
It nose bee four two long,
And eye can put the error rite,
Its rare lea ever wrong.

Eye have run this poem threw it,
Am shore your pleased two no,
Its letter perfect awl the weigh,
My chequer has tolled me sew!

---------------------------------------------------



But wait ... there's more ...

Once upon a time, there was a policeman that saw a man sitting in a car with a tiger sitting next to him. The police officer said, "It's against the law to have a tiger in your car. Take him to the zoo."

The next day the police officer saw the same man in the same car with the same tiger. The police officer said, "I thought I told you to take that tiger to the zoo."

The man replied, "I did. He liked it. Now we're going to the beach."

---------------------------------------------------



Father Murphy walks into a pub in Donegal, and asks the first man he meets, "Do you want to go to heaven?"

The man said, "I do, Father."
The priest said, "Then stand over there against the wall."
Then the priest asked the second man, "Do you want to go to heaven?"
"Certainly, Father," the man replied.
"Then stand over there against the wall," said the priest.

Then Father Murphy walked up to O'Toole and asked, "Do you want to go to heaven?"
O'Toole said, "No, I don't Father."

The priest said, "I don't believe this. You mean to tell me that when you die you don't want to go to heaven?"

O'Toole said, "Oh, when I die, yes. I thought you were getting a group together to go right now."



Have a safe and productive week.

John Stulen
Editor

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