Carol Connell



Carol works at the Stapleton Library at IUP.  January 5, 2018 is her last day.  She started working in 1970.  I was a Junior that year at IUP, and spent more time in art studios for my Art Major, so I did not know Carol then.

A few years ago, when I returned to the area, I use the Indiana Free Library and the IUP library for computer connection to the world.  When Carol heard a few of my jokes and riddles, she would tell me some “Library Humor” to share with the crew at the Indiana Free Library.  It was a back and forth humor challenge and I was the messenger.  She has many to share but my favorite story from Carol was the following:

She would explain that late at night when the library was closed,  all the books had time to relax and have conversation with one another.  How she heard this actual conversation is still a mystery but this is what she heard.  A Math Book and a History Book were having a conversation and the Math book said to the History book.  “I’ve got problems!”

All the best to you Carol!



Michael and Pearl

Michael N. Vaporis is an Attorney at Law and his wife, Pearl S. Berman is a Professor of Psychology at Indiana University of Pennsylvania, a writer and activist.

Michael’s office is located on the first floor of Penn State Towers, the building I live in and with some of the past negative work issues at my building, he was a very kind individual and helped me out in several ways and also helped me to be productively busy.

Michael and Pearl had several projects at their home and I was up for the challenges of plastering, caulking, priming and painting inside and out.  We all know, that projects in any home are never ending.

Another project was the leaf removal from their rain gutters but while using the garden hose to flush out the gutters, it got caught around the ladder and the ladder fell to the ground.  If it were not for a very nice neighbor, I could have been stuck on the roof for several hours before Michael and/or Pearl came home for the evening.  Since that time, they have invested in all new gutters for their home.

One of the most memorable interactions was when they invited me to join daughters, Rachel and Irene, co-workers and friends for a rare holiday combination.  On November 22, 2013, Hanukkah and Thanksgiving fell on the exact same day.  It was called:  Thanksgivukkah.

Pearl is Jewish and Michael is Greek Orthodox, so I got to learn about Hanukkah and enjoy great food, company and conversation.


Kevin and Laura Kubica


In August 2015, while walking across the parking lot at Regency Mall, I was stopped by these two individuals and asked if I was in the Indiana Gazette Newspaper the day before.  Laura and Kevin were the first people to ask that question.  I was surprised to say the least.

Since that time, they have included me in several activities at their church, had me do some shelf installations at their old home and Kevin had included me a few times for some good Thai lunches in the neighborhood.

They recently moved into a new home they built.  Kevin is busy with his work at Kits Brokerage, they are both busy with their 3 children, and they have lives of their own.  I shall never forget our first meeting and the kindness they have shared with me.

I cannot take credit for the above photograph.  It is from Kevin’s Facebook file!

A Positive Step Forward!

It took over 4 years of saving money for a down payment, but in August, I got a Jeep Patriot.  Just yesterday, I received my vanity plate so there may be additional “positive steps” going forward.

Special thanks to the crew at Tristar Motors.  Zachary Stuck did most of the paperwork, but Shawn O’Barto, sold me the Jeep and literally went an extra mile and a half to not only take me to my bank so I could transfer funds but also to my Allstate agent to work with Gwen Riley and Dave Covato.


When I was applying for my plate, SHUT UP was already taken, so adding the “J” for “John” works for me!  Hope you laugh!


I made a special “gray version” of a plate for the front of the Jeep.