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Hero or Villain: Steering Teens in the Right Direction PDF Print E-mail
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Written by Ginny Grimsley   
Monday, 25 March 2013 14:46
National Tragedies Can Be Avoided with Vigilance, Understanding & Guidance, says Novelist

For adults, high school is as near or far as the next or last reunion. But for thousands of teens, high school is a present hell of isolation, confusion and negativity, says novelist Ryan D. Pearson.

“Think about the young men who live in infamy because they somehow couldn’t channel their energy in a positive manner – Adam Lanza in Connecticut; James Holmes, the ‘movie-theater shooter;’ the two Columbine shooters; Jared Loughner, who shot U.S. Rep. Gabrielle Giffords – some were extremely intelligent, and they were passionate, too,” says Pearson.

Precocious in high school, Pearson earned his law degree at age 21 and went on to write “The Element Series,” (, which follows a teenager blessed with wealth and fame who discovers he has the added responsibility of super powers.

“One aspect I love about comic books and fiction is that the character arcs show how some become the villains, and those who stand by their values – the heroes.”

Teens, who have experienced life only as children, suddenly find themselves in very adult circumstances in high school – that last step toward adulthood, he says. For many gifted, talented, sensitive or otherwise misunderstood teens, he offers tips for surviving this last step toward independence:

• Embrace what makes you different: Perhaps the most important struggle a teenager faces is self-acceptance. Many may believe that that straight-A, all-star jock with a perfect complexion has it made. Meanwhile, he may be experiencing his own inner turmoil. If you care about things no one else seems to care about; if you’re better at chess than football; if you think you don’t fit the mold of “pretty” or “handsome” – you might just be on the path to happiness. A great example receiving plenty of attention is the It Gets Better project, which encourages gay teens to embrace their sexuality. However, the concept can be applied to anyone who feels like an outsider. “There is only one you; don’t be afraid of who you are,” Pearson says.

• Perhaps the greatest commencement address: While life is just beginning after high school and college, it’s rarely easy – that’s the thrust of George Foster Wallace’s 2005 speech to the graduates of Kenyon College. Wallace, a giant of contemporary literature, touches on some of the most important adult challenges: the potential loneliness of adult life, the importance of being well-adjusted and the difficulty of empathy – “Think about it: There is no experience you’ve had that you were not at the absolute center of.” Truthful, unflinching and humorous, the speech has since resonated online.

• You can change!: A depressing mindset for unhappy high school students involves the idea that nothing about one’s experience will change. “Everything changes – this is the one rule of life you can count on,” says Pearson, whose went on a worldwide adventure after college. “Teens who go the villainous route often have an attitude that nothing about them or the world is going to be different unless they intervene with extreme behavior.” In reality, one or two key shifts in thinking can change the course in a young person’s life trajectory. Friends, parents and educators have the best access for helping a troubled teen to “see the light.”

About Ryan D. Pearson

After completing a Bachelor of Laws degree at age 21, Ryan D. Pearson took a leap of faith by leaving the beautiful beaches of Australia to travel the world. He eventually landed in Montreal, where he lived for several years before returning home to write about his adventures. He overcame many challenging personal experiences and now embraces an audacious new lifestyle. Pearson writes about his own character arc – involving a supernatural and overzealous way of life – via character Reagan Jameson.

Local Speakers Move on to Next Level PDF Print E-mail
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Written by Don Wadleigh   
Monday, 25 March 2013 12:20
MOLINE IL, USA, 03/23/2013 — Toastmaster Clubs in the Quad Cities are proud to announce that Tamra Binder, of the Quad Cities Executive Toastmasters Club will represent the Quad Cities area at the next level of Competition. Tamra won first place in both the International Speech and the Table Topics© Competition. With these wins, she will progress to the next level to be held on April 20, 2013 in Muscatine, IA.

The International Speech Contest is one of several Speech Contests sponsored by Toastmasters  International. Each Contestant must present a 5 to 7 minute speech on a subject of their choosing which carries a message of motivation or inspiration. Winners at each level progress on to higher levels leading to the International Toastmasters Conference held in August of each year where the World Champion of Public Speaking is determined.

A competition for the finest Impromptu Speaker is also held as part of the program. This is a competition, known as “Table Topics©, where selected Champions from Area clubs are presented with a topic, and are given up to 2 minutes to develop a speech on that topic with no preparation.

“It is through competitions such as these and the support of fellow Toastmasters that I overcame my own decades-long struggle with severe stage fright,” said Kristin Bruchmann of Davenport, a member of Toastmasters who has achieved the title of Distinguished Toast Master (DTM), the highest achievement available within Toastmasters, and is now one of the leaders of Toastmasters in Iowa.

About Local Toastmasters Clubs
Local Toastmasters Clubs being represented in this Competition include: Moline Toastmasters,; QC Executive Toastmasters,; QC Advanced Toastmasters,;

About Toastmasters International
Toastmasters International is a nonprofit educational organization that teaches public speaking and  leadership skills through a worldwide network of clubs. Founded in October 1924, the organization currently has more than 280,000 members in 13,500 clubs in 116 countries. Each week, Toastmasters helps more than a quarter million people of every ethnicity, education and profession build their competence in communication so they can gain the confidence to lead others. For information about local Toastmasters clubs, please visit Follow Toastmasters International on Twitter @Toastmasters.


How to Embrace Your Inner ‘Cougar’ PDF Print E-mail
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Written by Ginny Grimsley   
Friday, 22 March 2013 14:36
6 Ways to Rebound from a Midlife Slump, Offered By a ‘Liberated Trucker-Babe’

It’s not hard for women in midlife to feel like they belong to the Island of Broken Toys, says Xandra “Sunny” Moon, a self-described liberated, 18-wheeler-driving, 40-plus babe.

“There are thousands of beautiful mothers, wives and ex-wives out there who feel like they’ve lost their sexuality – I know because they tell me as I travel the country and get to know them,” says Moon, author of “The Power of the Titz…a woman’s journey back to her self” ( “My mission is to let them know they can get it back!”

Like the many of the women she meets in her travels, Moon suffered physical and emotional abuse as a young woman. After raising four children and enduring an unhappy marriage for several years, she fell into a deep depression, she says. But several steps took her out of despair, and by the time she climbed out, she was happy, confident and back in touch with Sunny, she says.

Moon lists the ways in which women 40 and older can rediscover their “inner babe:”

• Embrace your sexuality!: It’s not just a “Mrs. Robinson” stereotype – older women do make for better, more participatory sexual partners. Older women have more self-possession; they’re not as callow and tend to have more character both in personality, intrigue and in sexual performance. Women 40 and older are also more forthright, which can be a major turn-on, especially for younger men in need of direction. Younger women are still deciding what sex means to them, whereas older women are more likely to appreciate it for its own sake.

• Education and employment: Perhaps the most important vehicle for Moon’s self-empowerment is her continuing education. Gaining her GED and furthering her education at a university allowed her to support herself with a good job. Past generations of women were overwhelmingly reliant upon their husbands for financial support. Having your own income allows women the power to choose their relationships, and not remain stuck in one.

• Remember your old social life?: A big part of relocating your inner diva is remembering the good times you had as a teen and 20-something – back when you had your first appletini, your first date at a fancy restaurant and, yes, your first day-long hangover. In many ways, these things are like new again. Under-appreciated mothers and wives tend to live primarily for others, but now it’s time to reclaim those fun nights out with the girls and catch some time for yourself.

• Cosmetic surgery: This is still a touchy subject for many ladies. Moon’s first rule is to have cosmetic surgery only for yourself – not for someone else, and to ensure you are in good enough health to withstand the rigors involved with surgery. Other important considerations include realistic expectations, potentially catty responses from girlfriends, short- and long-term consequences, such as time off work and maintenance, and whether or not you really want larger breasts or a botoxed brow.

• Dating outside your comfort zone: Maybe now is the time to consider other types of partners -- perhaps those of a different ethnicity or maybe even a different gender. Now is the time to be adventurous and explore new avenues.

• Health/Diet/Exercise: Of course, feeling and looking attractive is important to you – so be healthy! Nothing is better at giving ladies that can-do attitude than a nice workout. Being selective about what you eat is as important as being selective about who you date; you want a lover and diet that will treat you right.

“We have but one life,” says Lee Abzu, Moon’s second husband, soul mate and coauthor to her books.

“If you’re single and in your 40s, 50s, 60s or older, you can either wait around for the kids or grandkids to come by and visit, or you can get out there and regain the vitality and lust for life you used to have.”

About Xandra “Sunny” Moon

Xandra “Sunny” Moon is a survivor who came into her own after age 40. As a younger woman, she endured rape, unlawful imprisonment, mental and emotional abuse, and divorce. She has worked 14 years as a truck driver, during which she has spoken with thousands of woman near or at midlife. After raising her four children, she continued her education at Idaho State University and eventually married her second husband and soul mate, Lee Abzu. She now counsels women who are seeking rebirth.

Iowa Supreme Court Opinions March 22, 2013 PDF Print E-mail
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Written by Iowa Judical Branch   
Friday, 22 March 2013 13:49
Notice: The opinions posted on this site are slip opinions only. Under the Rules of Appellate Procedure a party has a limited number of days to request a rehearing after the filing of an opinion. Also, all slip opinions are subject to modification or correction by the court. Therefore, opinions on this site are not to be considered the final decisions of the court. The official published opinions of the Iowa Supreme Court are those published in the North Western Reporter published by West Group.

Opinions released before April 2006 and available in the archives are posted in Word format. Opinions released after April 2006 are posted to the website in PDF (Portable Document Format).   Note: To open a PDF you must have the free Acrobat Reader installed. PDF format preserves the original appearance of a document without requiring you to possess the software that created that document. For more information about PDF read: Using the Adobe Reader.

For your convenience, the Judicial Branch offers a free e-mail notification service for Supreme Court opinions, Court of Appeals opinions, press releases and orders. To subscribe, click here.

NOTE: Copies of these opinions may be obtained from the Clerk of the Supreme Court, Judicial Branch Building, 1111 East Court Avenue, Des Moines, IA 50319, for a fee of fifty cents per page.

No. 10–2037


No. 11–0549


No. 11–1394


No. 11–2031


Quad Cities Interfaith March Newsletter PDF Print E-mail
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Written by QC Interfaith   
Friday, 22 March 2013 13:22
QCI Welcomes New Members!
QCI is growing with four new members just this year! Welcome: All Saints Lutheran Church, Davenport, Unitarian Universalist Congregation of the Quad Cities, Social Action Office of the Diocese of Davenport, and Second Baptist Church in Rock Island. We are excited to have you around the table, working together to strengthen your congregations, develop leaders and create a more just Quad Cities Interfaith.  
One to One Training, Saturday, April 20th

This One to One training will be from 8:30 am until 2:30 pm at Broadway Presbyterian Church, 710 23rd St. Rock Island, IL. Sam Finkelstein of the Gamaliel Foundation will walk us  through the most important tool we have in building relationships and our communities: the One to One.

A one to one visit is an intentional, face to face conversation for the purpose of building a relationship, gathering information and understanding what really matters to that person.

This training is to help develop relationships within our organization,  our congregations and our community . Bring a team of leaders from your congregation to learn this essential tools and ways we can put this to use in building your congregation's ministries. This training is free but registration is required. Call 563.322.4910 to register or for more information. Light breakfast and lunch will be provided.

QCI Hosting Illinois Dept. of Transportation Secretary Anne Schneider for a Stakeholders meeting in April

Watch this Space! The Transportation Equity Task Force has organized a Transportation Jobs Stakeholders meeting with Illinois Secretary of Transportation Anne Schneider. This meeting will be held at Church of Peace in Rock Island, IL. QCI is bringing together elected officials, clergy, lay leaders, and concerned community members so we can get an update from Schneider on the progress of the rail project,  share our work on jobs and job preparedness for our community.  There are people who want jobs, and jobs coming, so how do we work together to fill in the  gap and ensure more our our community get those jobs. 
Community Members are welcome, however we require an RSVP. Please call QCI at 563-322-4910

"QCI Trivia Night Fundraiser"

On Saturday, March 2nd, 110 people attended the QCI Trivia Night. Thirteen teams joined in on some competitive fun to help us raise over $1,500! Tons of Raffle baskets were given away. We would like to thank the Bribiescos for running the game, our Chairman Joe who called the game, and everyone who donated basket prizes! Trivia Night would not have been a success without the help from QC community members.

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