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Mike's Message for July

If you are like me, you are experiencing some degree of depression in the face of this lock down. For single people like us, it is harder since we live alone and have fewer opportunities for interaction. That is why we have CAC. Take advantage of the opportunities we present for you. You will be glad you did. I am certainly glad. I used to hid under the bed when I got worried. Then I joined CAC , and I hardly ever hide under the bed now....well, unless I am being chased by Godzilla, the Boogie Man, or Frankenstein. In those cases, the best place to be is under the bed. But, for all other times, CAC is the place to be. (Hey, that rhymes!)

Please note that the CAC Board has been working diligently to provide events during this pandemic. Sadly, a lot of them could not be held, but we keep trying. Fortunately, we did manage a few outdoor events last month and everyone seemed to enjoy them immensely. The simplest event can be a big deal during a lock down. For July, we have various events scheduled. We are much more hopeful that most will take place, as the lock down is supposed to ease as time goes on. So, check your newsletter for some great social options. Of course, all events must abide by social distancing guidelines, and we should continue wearing masks, at least for indoor events. (It just occurred to me that Godzilla, the Boogie Man, and Frankenstein never wear a mask. I should probably report them. Maybe that will get them off my back.)

Mike Kernan
CAC President 

Mike’s Message for June

posted May 21, 2020, 10:39 AM by Sarah Haugse   [ updated May 21, 2020, 10:40 AM ]

Well, I have managed to survive this pandemic so far. I am not surprised because I grew up with six sisters. I had to live in a house crawling with girl cooties. If I survived that, I can probably survive anything. As you may have noticed, the CAC Board has been diligently planning events in case we are ever released from this quarantine. Just like last month, the newsletter is populated with activities in case the stay-at-home order is lifted. All events are tentative depending on the Governor’s orders. In the meantime, please say a prayer (or two) for those people suffering most from this pandemic. We are all suffering a little, but especially those who have lost loved ones, or who have loved ones at risk. Please keep them all in your prayers as we approach our Lord for deliverance from this plague. In the meantime, keep the faith, stay optimistic, and if you get depressed or lonely, call one of your CAC friends to chat. They can lift your spirits. (They always lift mine).

Mike Kernan 
CAC President 

Mike's Message for May

posted May 3, 2020, 12:46 PM by Sarah Haugse

The past two months have been a difficult for all of us. Our events were cancelled and our entire lives came to a standstill. As of this writing, it is not apparent when this will end. CAC has planned events for May, with the hope that life can resume by then. Of course, everything is tentative, and is contingent upon the lifting of the stayat-home order. Some major events, like the Square Dance, are being postponed for logistical reasons. We will publicize the new scheduling when ready. A lot of people are concerned about the Fall Weekend trip to Niagara Falls. That trip is still on, as we expect that things will be well back to normal by then. However, if the travel agency would cancel the trip, they would refund our money. Unrelated to the current emergency, we have also faced the loss of old friends among the CAC alumni. In the past few months, we lost both Steve Ruggiero and Rick Faccenda, who were very active and much liked club members in the 80’s and 90’s. Also, various members and alumni have reported the recent deaths of their parents. Sadly, all this is to be expected as we age, but it is nonetheless difficult and disheartening to say “Goodbye” to loved ones. And it is made all the more difficult now because we cannot come together to share our grief or to celebrate our shared lives. We couldn’t even celebrate Easter in church! But with hopeful hearts, we will continue to plan for a lively CAC, and I encourage you to keep in touch with your family and your CAC friends during this difficult time. This will help us all to endure until our lives return to normal again. May God bless and keep you all.
Mike Kernan / CAC President

Mike's Message for April

posted Mar 16, 2020, 5:22 PM by Sarah Haugse   [ updated Mar 20, 2020, 10:48 AM ]

I love April because it is full of warmth, sunshine, blue skies and flowers---well, at least when it‘s not raining. Now we can begin planning our outdoor activities, like hiking and biking, and canoeing and softball and parades. There will be no need for our members to sit at home sulking because there is nothing to do. No Siree! All you need is your April Newsletter, and there it is: a whole month loaded with great activities with super fun people(like me).Sadly, the Board did not approve my request for funding for a paddy wagon, rope, and cattle prods to coax reluctant members to attend our events. But don’t worry. You can still come on your own just for the fun of it and you can meet all those fun people who regularly attend (like me). We have some exciting events this month, and still more in future months. Everything we do ends up being fun. Check out our annual spring mixer on April 17th. Don't forget the play "Xanadu" at Bishop Canevin on April 25th. In May we’re planning a Pirate baseball game and a Canoe Trip on a calm water section of the Youghiogheny River. These are just a few of the great events the Board has planned for us. So, when the April sun shines through the window, greet it with a smile because CAC has some great plans for you! Aren’t you glad you joined? I am.

Mike Kernan / CAC President

Mike's Message for March

posted Mar 16, 2020, 5:06 PM by Sarah Haugse

When I was a little kid, I used to think that, on the first day of spring, the weather would stop being cold and blustery, and immediately turn sunny and warm. I awaited the first day of spring with great anticipation, expecting to run outside in a light t-shirt and frolic in the sun. Imagine my disappointment when I woke up on March 21, went over to the kitchen door and peered out to see a cold, dreary, overcast morning with a couple of flakes of snow, and a no hint of sunshine. I felt gypped! I thought, “Who is in charge of this stuff anyway? Mommm! What happened to spring?” Of course, Mom couldn’t fix this disaster, and instead, she imparted some parental wisdom on me. She said, “Spring comes when it wants to come. Not when you want it to come.” Instead of learning a lesson, I felt even more gypped. What good are parents anyway if they can’t fix this stuff? 

Well, shoot forward in time a few decades or so. Now I am president of a really great social club that offers lots of fun things to do. But when I go to an event and I see the participants enjoying themselves with laughter, joking, conversation, fun and good food, I wonder about all those people who did not come out to join us. Where are they? They should be here too, sharing in all this fun. Then a version of my mother’s words comes back to me saying, “People come to events when they want to come. Not when you want them to come.” What!? Gypped again! We can’t have this! I am president. I should be able to fix this. So I stayed up all night figuring out how to get everybody to come to our events. And I came up with a plan. I will only need the club to buy a few items necessary to carry out my plan: A list of all members, associates and subscribers (check), A few people to take attendance at our events (I can do that), a paddy wagon, rope and tethers, and a cattle prod (in case anybody gets ornery). All we have to do is drive the paddy wagon over to the homes of those recalcitrant people who did not show up, and drag them out to the event. While a few people might be a bit put out, I am sure most will thank me after the event proves to be a great and fun experience. The plan is fool proof! 

Good. I just need a few volunteers to drive the paddy wagon, and to ride in the back with the “guests.” I already managed to find some used cattle prods at a very good price. They work fairly well, but you have to handle them carefully because they tend to --Ouch!-- short circuit occasionally --Whoa!--. But with a little practice --Yow!-- anyone can Yipe!-- master them. I also managed to get a paddy wagon on budget. It looks like a rickshaw, so we’ll need some brawny volunteers to pull it. (The cattle prods may come in handy here too.) Now then, aren’t you glad you elected such a dedicated, competent and effective president? All I need is to have the Board approve my expenses. All in favor… 

Mike Kernan / CAC President

President's Message February, 2020

posted Jan 30, 2020, 9:33 AM by Gary Urbatis   [ updated Mar 20, 2020, 10:44 AM by Sarah Haugse ]

Mikes Message for February

It’s February, and Ill bet that many of you have already broken most or all of your New Years resolutions by now. But not me. I dont even make my resolutions until February. That way, if people ask me if I have broken them yet, I can truthfully say “No.”  And I have some great resolutions, which, as you have probably figured out by now, I am going to share them here. Here are the best New Years resolutions youll ever hear in


1.   I will learn what resolution” means.

2.   I will stop crossing my fingers when I make resolutions.

3.   I will wait until the pizza cools so I dont burthe roof of my mouth.

4.   I will only eat white snow.

5.   I will stop licking frozen flagpoles.

6.   I will attend more CAC events.

7.   I will respond to tense situations with compliments, even when they are punching me.

8.   I will be welcoming and warm to all new people at CAC events.

9.   I will work to improve my memory.

10. I cant remember the last one.

If this list seems too long and difficult, then I suggest you select only one of these resolutions for yourself. I recommend #8, because it makes you feel real good and you make great new friends that way.

Now you are probably wondering why I need to make resolutions since I am already perfect. Well, I have news for you: I am not perfect. I used to be perfect, but I had to give it up because it made people jealous of me. gave up perfection in 1998. It was my new yearresolution at that time, and I am proud to say that I have kept it ever since.

Mike Kernan

CAC President

President's Message January, 2020

posted Jan 3, 2020, 9:33 AM by Gary Urbatis

Mikes Message for January

By the time you read this, you will probably already know that I have been elected president yet again. And I know what you must be thinking: “Oh, the travesty of it all!”  I know. I feel the same way. Its like that movie, Ground Hog Day. I am stuck in this repeating cycle with no end. Too bad most of the impeachment experts are all too busy right now. Hmmm. Maybe somebody can organize a CAC coup. (If you need more people, Ileven join. Im open to anything at this point.)

Well, at least being president does not preclude me from enjoying all those great CAC events. As a member, I do get to enjoy all the friendship and camaraderie that come with membership. CAC is all about enjoying life with other people. If CAC were a product, I would call it, “Friends in a Can.” Whenever youre bored or lonely, just open up a can, and Voila! Instant party! But wcant pack all those people in a can. (The officials frowon that.) So instead, we pack all the fun into this newsletter. Just open up the newsletter, and there it is: all sorts of pre-planned, fun events for your enjoyment. No can opener needed. Just show up at the designated places and times, and let the good times roll!  What could be better than that? So instead of griping about anotheyear with me as your president, just put it out of your mind and come on out and have fun. I wont stop you. And if there is a successful coup that topples me, Ill throw a huge party and you can all come! Please dont object. Just let me dream

Mike Kernan

CAC President

P.S. I have some extra coal left over from Christmas in case anybody needs some.

President's Message, December, 2019

posted Dec 9, 2019, 7:19 PM by Gary Urbatis

Mike’s Message for December

It is finally the last month of my 2019 Presidency, and to my surprise the club has survived. Like all of you, I find myself getting ready for Christmas.

Santa always remembers me on that magical day. His annual coal delivery to my living room has been growing steadily each year. For a long time I was upset about thisIt’s very messy and hard to clean up. I used to board up all the doors and windows and put a roarinfire in the fireplace. But that pesky elf managed to get in every time. Then one day, I happened to learn that NortPole anthracite (NPA) is the best quality coal on earth.  Since then, I have made a killing every New Years Eve selling the whole load on the coal spot market. (NPA sells at a very high price.) I have customers calling itheir orders in advance. In fact, I have to be extra bad this year to make sure I reach my goal of 50 tons.

So instead of thanking the Board for all their hard work, I decided to insult each one of them. (That ought to rake in the coal!)  So here goes:

I really should take this opportunity to thank all the Board members for their tireless efforts. Their hard work scheduling, planning and executing numerous events and their many details was key to this year’s success. But Im not going to do that. My need for coal comes first. So heres to all you hard working Board Members:

“Sucker born every minute! Pppbbbfffttt! Nyyeaaahhh!


Mike Kernan

President, CAC Pittsburgh

P.S.  I guess I can settle for only 49 tons of coal, so… May all of our CACers have a warm and blessed Christmas with family and friends this year. And thank you all for sharing a wonderful year filled with friends. May there be many more for all of us.

President's Message, November, 2019

posted Oct 30, 2019, 10:03 AM by Gary Urbatis

Mikes Message for November


This time of year, we express our thanks for our various blessings.  Dont forget to thank God for all your friends at CAC.  Friends are important to your whole life and well-being.  Friends help confirm your self-worth. And best of all, friends are lots of fun to have around. Someone once gave me this comparison between a good friend and a best friend: A good friend is someone who bails you out of jailBut a best friend is sitting next to you in the cell saying, Well, that sure was fun while it lasted. Whether your CAC friends are good friends or best friends, dont forget to thank the Good Lord for themAnd if you dont have many CAC friends, thacan only mean one thing: You arent coming out to events to meet us. (Because if you had been coming to events, you might either be bailing me out or sitting next to me in this stupid cell!) But I digress…  Anyway, we are having lots of nice events this month. Come on out. And if its not too much trouble, bring your check book and stop by the jail on your way to an event and bail me out, because I want to go too. And so do Traci and Joe and Chris and Susan and Well, you know who your Board members are.


Mike Kernan

CAC President

President's message, October, 2019

posted Oct 30, 2019, 9:59 AM by Gary Urbatis   [ updated Oct 30, 2019, 10:00 AM ]

Mike’s Message for October


Last night I had a strange dream about CAC. I was watching mixed up classic TV shows, when I heard a knock at the door. I said, “Who’s there?”  They replied, “It’s the CAC. Come on out and join us for some fun.”  I thought, “Oh boy! Just what I need!”  I grabbed my coat and darted out the door. I was shocked to see that it wasn’t CAC at all. It was a land shark! I dove back inside just in time, and I managed to muscle the door shut. “Whew! That was close.”  I went back to the TV to watch Leave it to Gilligan.  A little while on, there was another knock.  “Who is it?” They replied, “It’s the CAC. Come on out and join us for some fun. And don’t forget your car keys.” I thought, “Not that land shark again.” I peeked out and saw some guy waving at me. I figured this was the real deal, and I opened the door. Well it wasn’t CAC. It was the Repo Man, and he grabbed my car keys, jumped into my car and drove off. I was mortified. I went back to the TV to watch Sgt. Schultz starring in Little House on the Stalag. Before the episode ended, there was another knock. “Who is it?” They replied, “It’s the CAC. Come on out and join us for some fun.” I opened the door only to find out it was the IRS, and they put a lien on my salary. I couldn’t take it anymore! I tore my shirt, knelt down on my knees and I cried, “Where did I go wrong!” Then a ray of light shone down on me from above. And a voice said, “You goofball! CAC doesn’t come knocking at your door to get you. You have to go to CAC to have fun. They send you a newsletter with all the great, fun activities every month.  Don’t fall for those bogus visitors claiming to be CAC. Just read your newsletter and come out to the events.” I replied, “Oh yeah. Thanks for the great advice. By the way, are you God?”  He replied, “No, it’s me, Gary. I’m on your roof with a flashlight.”  I went back in the house and sat down to watch Mr. Rogers starring in Rawhide. But soon there came a knock at the door. “Who is it this time?” They replied. “It’s the mail man. I’m delivering your mail including your new CAC Newsletter.” I thought, “Oh boy. I’ll finally get to have fun.” I eagerly opened the door. But it wasn’t the mailman. It was that land shark again. And he ate me.

But don’t fret. Remember--it was all just a dream. I’m OK. But there is a lesson here. CAC does not come to you. You have to go to CAC to have fun. If you wait for them to come to you, all you’ll get are land sharks, repo men, and IRS agents. Get off your duff and come out and join us for fun. I will be there too…right after today’s feature movie: Godzilla meets Gomer.


Mike Kernan

CAC President

President's message, September, 2019

posted Sep 12, 2019, 9:40 AM by Gary Urbatis

Mikes Message for September


It is hard to believe, but a few people actually do read the Presidents Message. (I lost that bet.) For those lucky souls who opt to grace themselves with my wisdom (stop choking- I know youre faking that), here are some enlightening tidbits:   Be sure to note that our General Membership Meeting has been scheduled for November, and is listed in this newsletter. We will list it for the next three months, therefore everyone will know about it. The event is run as a free social night with board games and refreshments, which we interrupt briefly for the nominations for club officers from the floor. But if you want to nominate yourself or another member for office, you can do so any time before the meeting by sending a note (email is fine) to one of the Board members. The offices up for election are President, First VP, Second VP, Secretary, and Treasurer. The committee heads are appointed from among the various volunteers. If you are interested in any of our committees, just submit your name for consideration. Committee heads have a vote on the Board. But anyone can participate on a committee as a “committee member by just volunteering. It is that easy. If you have ideas that can help the club create great activities, then join a committee. We welcome your enthusiasmYou can join a committee anytime, not just

during elections. No vote is needed to join a committee. It is fun and gratifying to host an event.


Mike Kernan

CAC President

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