Thursday, June 28, 2007

Tomorrow is the concert

See you there

Wednesday, June 27, 2007

I have two more friends who are celebrating a birthday today.

Happy Birthday Martha and Happy Birthday John.

I just read where they are going to open a Medical Clinic in Bilo. I am thinking do we really want to buy our food in a place filled with sick people? Do you really want treatment from a doctor who takes the bonus card? Studies have shown that a shopping cart is one of the most germ covered places on earth, disgusting. Now this. I am just coming to terms with the handy wipes before using the buggy. I understand the the grocery chains are under more pressure than in the past, and I know the need to show a profit. What's next.. Funeral services?

Yes I know sick people come in, and more so since they got a pharmacy. But I can cling the the illusion that the child with Whooping cough stayed home in bed under the watchful eye of mom while dad came to get their prescription filled. Now you KNOW they and everyone else are spreading their airborne infections. Do I really want my produce selection to be in the checkout with the guy with creeping death fungus all over him?
Gross !!

Banks are enough, how else can we float the loan to cover the rise in milk prices?

Tuesday, June 26, 2007

Happy Birthday Danielle

Monday, June 25, 2007

Kristie's brother and his family dropped by Hartwell on their way back home from their vacation Friday night. They are leaving the kids, Katelyn and Logan with their Grandparents for a week. The visit comes at a busy time for Kristie but that's the only time they could work something out. We went down and spent the day with them all Saturday and part of Sunday. It was nice because they live too far away and we get so little time together.
Logan who is eight, has dreams of being a field goal kicker in Pee Wee Football this fall so he and I spent a lot of time at the high school practice field kicking on Saturday. Logan didn't do half bad. He only got this idea over the last few days but after a few pointers he was kicking about 45-55 % from the twenty yard line. Remember he is only eight and weighs in at just over 65 lbs. If it had not been so hot and humid it would have been even more fun.
On Sunday we planned to attend the late service so we could be with the Richard and Lisa before they headed home after lunch. Kristie's mom lived up to her rep. She pulled out all the stops and we feasted on pintos and cornbread and ham and potato salad and pie my my.
Sunday evening Kristie got an urgent call to come by her office. We were already on the way to NewSpring so I dropped her off. I got there and wondered upstairs for a moment when Steven saw me and ask if I could fill in on camera. I said sure no problem, and just like that the countdown started. It was fun except, I did not have my glasses, so it was hard to keep in focus. I did have a rather awkward pair of reading specs in my pocket that helped some.

Well that was a quick update on what's going on around here. More later.

Saturday, June 23, 2007

William Shakespeare wrote, "The first thing we must do is kill all the lawyers," in King Henry VI. Well I am certainly not saying we should resort to violence of that sort, but I am amused to the point of being fed-up. I have several friends who are attorneys and they are fine upstanding, reasonable people but..... We need some common sense in the world.

They used to say the only certain things in life were death and taxes. I'll submit if you wait a moment or two you'll see someone will sue someone else over something silly. We’ve become overly litigious.
Have you heard about the who woman sued for mental distress because she didn’t buy a winning lottery ticket? In fact, she didn’t buy a ticket at all. But her neighbor did and won. She did not win so she sued for “emotional blackmail” and is demanding that she be paid an equal share.


Then there is the law suit against a dry cleaners for losing a mans pants. The courts need to sentence him to be slapped for wasting their time. The cleaner should give him a sixty bucks and send him to J.C. Penney.

Please !!!

As Don Henley so lyrically put it :

I turn on the tube and what do I see
A whole lotta people cryin’ ’don’t blame me’
They point their crooked little fingers ar everybody else
Spend all their time feelin’ sorry for themselves
Victim of this, victim of that
Your momma’s too thin; your daddy’s too fat

All this whinin’ and cryin’ and pitchin’ a fit
Get over it, get over it

Friday, June 22, 2007

Did yesterday seem extra long and hard ?

Fear not it was.

The 21st is the longest day of the year.
Summer solstice is when Earth's axis tilts the most toward causing
the Sun to be farthest north at noon. The name is derived from Latin sol (sun) and sistere (to stand still, ) because at the time of solstice the the Sun appears to stands still. Its movement north or south is minimal. That happened this year at exactly 6:06 pm yesterday

Many cultures celebrate summer solstices. In Fairbanks the play a professional baseball game at midnight without lights because it never gets totally dark this time of year there. I can personally testify to that . But my favorite is in Iceland. Where they hold a big festival and street parties, complete with ice carvings and polar bear swims and related events. Ironically, it's usually still cold and even snowing when the celebration is held.

What did you do that was exciting?

Thursday, June 21, 2007

It was time once for Homegroup Trivia Night at NewSpring. Kristie is right in the middle of her audits at work and did not feel she could attend, but I went ahead and headed over. Even though I missed her I had a good time. It was held upstairs in the membership class room. We had most of our group members there. Alvin and Sheila, Eddie and Monica, Ben and Mahalie, Tod and Amy and little ole' me. The crowd was much larger than last time. I think we are going to have to move to a new venue next time. We did pretty well this time. 4th place moving up a notch. This time there were 8 more teams making a total of twenty. It was a lot of fun. I wish it were a quarterly thing. There was coffee, soft drinks, pie, cake, cheese cake, cookies and so on. I did not eat anything because Kristie and I had met at Chic-Fil-A for a quick bite.

The computer idea was cool and it was working well for us. But a couple teams seemed to be having issues. Bet Jared will have the kinks worked out by next time.

Wednesday, June 20, 2007

Is there no place safe? No refuge? No place of freedom?

I was at the gym the other day and had just stepped out of the shower when I heard a voice. Voices, I mean that is fine, it is a public gym after all. But the part that bothered me was there was only one other person in the locker room.

When I rounded the corner I saw a man standing facing his locker and hanging up his pants. He was there with out a stitch of clothing talking on his cell phone as if he were still at his desk. A business call. He was on the phone with a business contact.... a female no less, while standing in a locker room changing clothing. How important is he?

Call me old fashion, but is there no place left that is cell phone free? At dinner Friday night, Kristie and I felt left out because we were the only diners who didn't make and or receive a phone call. With one young couple, the guy was on his call the entire time they were eating. If I was the girl, I'd be sure to remove his name from my dating list. These days it seems talking to someone on the blower is more important than talking to the person you are with. It's nice to be"in touch" , and I understand multi-tasking, but give me a break. Does anyone just drive somewhere anymore?

Maybe I need to invent phone that rings from time to time even if there is no in coming call. You could just pretend to answer it and become all engrossed in a phony conversation. That'd be nice for people like me who spend less than all day with a cell attached to their ear.

Oh and don't get me started about the BORG looking people with headset devices attached to their skulls.

Tuesday, June 19, 2007

The Space Shuttle and the International Space Station (ISS)should be visible Tuesday and Wednesday nights. Even from
brightly-lit cities. Look skyward within a couple of hours of sunset should be able to spot them with naked eye, creeping across the sky like moving stars. They will become visible only when they are in sunlight and the observer is in deep twilight or darkness. This usually means shortly after dusk or before dawn.

What is most rare is the chance to see both the shuttle and the space station at the same time. Atlantis undocked from the ISS at 10:40 a.m.on Tuesday. The shuttle will remain at a relatively close distance to the space station until Thursday, June 21 when Atlantis is scheduled return to the Kennedy Space Center in Florida.

Look for them to travel northwest-to-southeast appearing as a pair of very "bright 'stars,", approaching magnitude -3 in brightness, about as bright as Jupiter and is four times brighter than Sirius, the brightest star in the night sky. The ISS should appear as the somewhat brighter object and will appear to be trailing Shuttle Atlantis as they move across the sky. With a telescope you should be able to make out details of the sprawling station. Traveling at approximately 18,000 mph , both should be visible from about one to four minutes as they glide with a steady speed across the sky.

Rush hit the stage in Charlotte last night at the Verizon Amphitheatre.
It was hot. I wonder if they expected anything to ever be this hot. Can three guys from the Great White North ever be prepared for the hot humid stage outside in the southeast? Rush is from Toronto. Last time I was there in May it came a blizzard. But they took it in stride however. During the show, Geddy asked if the crowd could do him a favor. Since they were enjoying the hot weather and escaping the cold and snow of Canada, he brought out a video camera and asked the crowd to shout "Hi Canada" when he counted to three. The humor helped to keep thing even. Things like Alex’s "Barbie Doll" and Mr. Potato Head sitting on his amps. The racks in ovens filled with roasting chicken. These replaced the bank of clothes dryers from the last tour. Or the collection of post-it notes fashioned into a large sign. During Limelight, Alex was reading the notes and started cracking up ... he looked over to his roadie who was also cracking up. It was like the roadie had left the messages for Alex, who was seeing them for the first time. The show was relaxed and rockin’. The guys were having a great time on stage
The sound was nice and clear. Everyone seems to agree this is the tightest the band has ever been. Maybe it is the two months of rehearsal. Every song had freshness to it. The crowd seemed very receptive of the new material. Especially Neil's solo. It was different than any of his past solos. His new sound assortment for the electronic kit was a pleasant surprise. For you drummers keeping score on Neil's use of matched or traditional grip, He used matched 95% of the time and he held them normal with the tip hitting the head. He used traditional grip on 3 songs with the snare but very briefly. He can still beat the hound out of those drums.
The multi media interludes were fresh and very cool too. It was interesting to know so many younger fans enjoying the show. For some I am sure it was their first concert. What a way to start. No other show will ever come up to that standard.

A new thought has been posted here

Sunday, June 17, 2007

He’s my dad. My father (we never called him anything but dad) was born into a farm family in Northeast Georgia. Even though his name was James everyone in the family went by their middle names. So growing up he was known as Ray. Dad was the first of three boys raised up to work hard and taught to love God and each other. Growing up on a farm meant all of the family had chores to do, yet I know there was time for fun too. You could always dam up the creek and make a swimming hole.
The church was the community and a large part of the family’s social world. They didn’t live too far away and you could always count on them being there. In the late summers the whole family would load up and go off to camp meeting. Living for a week in “tents” as they called the primitive cabins and gathering in the evenings under a large wooden arbor. That very arbor, which dates to the civil war, is still in use today.
Upon becoming a young man my dad moved away from home and to Atlanta. Taking a day job at Sears and a second job at nights working in the world famous Varsity. Dad’s job there was opening the Coke bottles people would order.
Dad joined the Air Force and began his first career. It was at this time when he became known to everyone by his first name thanks to Uncle Sam. Most people shortened it to Jim and that is what he likes to be called today.
One of his first assignments took my father to Orlando Florida. He met my future mother after being drawn to a church by the gospel music quartet they had. Dad joined that group and somewhere along the line so did my mom. They later married. The group sang every weekend live on the radio and around the area. They even recorded a record.
The military has a way of sending you to live everywhere in the world except close to home. My family was no exception. We lived on both sides of the country from top to bottom and places in between. And we were sent outside the states too. Some of our best years were spent on the tropical little coral rock, called Guam. But no matter where we went, it always became home for us.
His love of gospel music stayed strong in my father’s life. About every place we ended up, dad found a group to sing with. And he collected records. Hundreds and hundreds of records. I have never spent more than a few minutes at his house before dad has the latest releases playing. I am sure that is where my music collecting obsession began.
Through it all my dad was always involved with his church. Growing up there was never a question if we were going to church on Sunday. It’s what we did. And dad sang in church every time he had a chance.
After “retiring” from the Air Force, dad started his own music group. For more than 27 years we climbed into the ole’ bus and headed out to sing somewhere. It was our way of life. I guess we sang a couple thousand times and recorded several records. The last one in Nashville.
The music group retired from active travel a few years ago, but that did not stop my dad. He leads the music at his home church every week. And all you need to do to get him to sing a special number is ask.
What a blessing we kids shared. A Godly father who led us by the example in the way he lived. Our mother and father taught us to do thing the way Jesus taught. Who could ever have more love in a family? Thanks dad, for being the man you are. I love you.

Saturday, June 16, 2007

I am a gadget freak. One of the toys I love is a small hand held GPS unit. My Garmin Geko is smaller than a cell phone. About the size of a Zippo lighter. I bought for when I go somewhere new. The size lets me take it when I wonder among the sites. I enjoy walking around. But out on the streets it's easy to get confused what direction you need to go. At least using the Geko I can find my hotel or car again. It works pretty good to. Except in downtown Chicago or New York. In both places the signal sometimes gets blocked by the tall buildings.

The GPS has a button that when pushed gives a 10 second countdown to power off. I was thinking wouldn't it be nice if people had a sleep button that worked like that?

I thought I would never fall asleep last night. Seems like I was there staring at the ceiling for hours before I finally "powered down". Don't you wish sometimes you could just go to bed, hit the button and click, you're out for the night?

Friday, June 15, 2007

Here is another interesting auction item. First it was a plane then a town. Now here is a space ship.

On Saturday in Paris a Soviet capsule covered with scorch marks from it's return to earth will be auctioned.

At 2.7 metres (8.75 feet) long and 1.6 metres (5.2 feet) wide, the 2.4-tonne capsule is one of a batch of seven launched by Soyuz rocket between 1985 and 1991. This one spent two-weeks touring the cosmos.

The price is expected to be between 30,000 and 35,000 euros (39,000 and 45,500 dollars).

This is not the first of the capsules to be auctioned. One already in Paris and the other in the United States. This sale coincides with this years Paris Air Show. ( the largest in the world)

Other rare aerospace memorabilia is up for bid too. Including NASA pictures of the US Gemini and Apollo missions and documents from the Wright Brothers, Louis Bleriot and other aviation pioneers.

Wouldn't it be cool to own a space ship?

Today is Flag day.

Thursday, June 14, 2007

Rush was in Atlanta last night. I did not get to go. BOO Hisssss snort etc. !!!

I guess it will be ok.

I already have an audio copy of the show. Boy that industry is fast, huh?


Here is a set list

Video Intro - Limelight - Digital Man - Entre Nous - Mission - Freewill - The Main Monkey Business - The Larger - Bowl - Secret Touch - Circumstances - Between The Wheels - Dreamline - Intermission - Thunder - Video Intro - Far Cry - Workin' Them Angels - Armor And Sword - Spindrift - The Way The Wind Blows - Subdivisions -
Natural Science - Witch Hunt - Malignant Narcissism - Neil Peart's Drum Solo - Hope - Summertime Blues - The Spirit Of Radio - Tom Sawyer - Audience - One Little Victory - A Passage to Bangkok - YYZ - Video Outro

They will be in Charlotte Monday night the 18th.

I'd have to rate Rush as my all time favorite band They are the only that could hold a candle to the type musicianship I was talking about in my previous post on Dream Theater.

See you in Charlotte Monday? Wanna ride?

Wednesday, June 13, 2007

For the past week or so now I have been almost continuously playing the new Dream Theater cd. Systematic Chaos is their ninth studio album and I think one of their best. The musicianship is beyond even my wildest imagination. If you ever heard them you understand what I mean. Then again they are actual trained musicians. From the finest music schools in the world. The Berklee College of Music and the Juilliard School of Music.

Dream Theater shows are never predictable. Their shows never feature the same set list. All songs from their 22 year history will be played sometime during the tour. Most of the time Dream Theater performs for at least three hours with an intermission and no opening act. Beside doing very long sets their own amazingly complex music.

They have also been know to hold concerts and cover an entire album of another band, before taking a break then returning to play a 3 plus hour set of their music. Covering such records as Master of Puppets by Metallica and Dark Side of the Moon by Pink Floyd. And from time to time they switch instruments all around during a show and preform a set as their alter ego band Nightmare Cinema.

If you never heard them then you need to. They are best classed as a progressive metal band. But I have heard them preform everything from Screamo to punk, to dance, ragtime, classical, from Elton John to Pearl Jam to P.O.D. and anything or everything between.
Dream Theater has become one of the most commercially successful progressive bands ever. Check them out Systematic Chaos is a fine place to start.
Sorry if you called and I did not answer. Can't hear the phone over the stereo.

Tuesday, June 12, 2007

One of the worlds greatest men died today. Don Herbert, TV's "Mr. Wizard"

Mr Wizard taught two generations science could be fun. He taught kids to think.

With his network tv show from 1951 to 1964 and again in the 80's, Don Herbert showed how to predict and measure and analyze a problem. His shows featured a simple, workshop-like set, and he demonstrated experiments using household items. He encouraged children to duplicate experiments at home. Mr Wizard received a Peabody Award in 1954.

Herbert's place in TV history was acknowledged by later stars. When "Late Night with David Letterman" debuted in 1982, Herbert was among the first-night guests.

I was lucky to have watched both shows. I even taped a few of the later ones.

I'll always be a Mr Wizard fan. A TRUE SCIENTIST
Don Herbert was 89.

I fired up the trusty ole' Snapper this morning. I should have cut the grass late last week, but I just put it off in light of my cold. I planned to mow yesterday, but that plan got vetoed by the much needed rain. This morning I managed to cut the whole yard. That usually doesn't happen often. Just the mowing alone takes 3 1/2 hours, forget the trimming. So I normally cut it it stages.

The snapper is dependable but I need this .

More rain this afternoon.
YES we could use a weeks worth of
soaking rains.

Monday, June 11, 2007

Ted and I were planning to fly to Atlanta this morning. When I woke up it was foggy, cloudy and looking like the very low clouds would bust into rain at any moment. Plus I still was suffering a little from the leftover cold of last week. So we postponed the flight until another day. Today it was doable, but marginal. Why fly in bad weather if you can wait?

We played with the weather radar feature on the new
Garmin sitting safely on the ground. It was showing the lines of thunderstorms that hit us right after lunch. I am amazed by technology.

He and ventured to Tanners and ate midday. Had to share Chicken Lips.

We got past the storms here with no damage. I hope you did too. I am so thankful for the rain. We need a lot more. ( without the thunderstrorms )

Sunday, June 10, 2007

My cold is almost gone. I still have a touch of congestion, but I feel close to normal. Normal as I get anyway. Finally I felt like venturing out. I was getting tired of looking at the walls here.

We had a great service at NewSpring yesterday. If the message didn't step on your toes at one point or another, then you were asleep. The past two Sundays have challenged me in a good way.
I went to the 6 pm service and made an effort to arrive a little early. It was nice to have time to chat with a few friends before sitting down. Kristie was attending a shower, so we rode separately . She came rushing in just before we started.
Afterwards we saw our new friend Jane. She and her husband Jack are hosting a child from Belarus for part of the summer. You can read all about this adventure on her site Jane Jane What an amazing thing to do.

Don't forget to mark your calendars for the second annual concert and fireworks event Live Free Live Loud. Here is the info
It's going to be held at the William A. Floyd Amphitheater here in Anderson, on June 29th.


Friday, June 08, 2007

Wanna see how the world has looked to me the past two days?

I am better today, not totally well, but functional.
More later.

Wednesday, June 06, 2007

My wife bought a Fiero new back shortly before we were married. She loves that car. Her "Little Dragster" as our niece named it. You can't get her out of that car. It's one of the last ones on the road. Even though parts are becoming harder to find she drives it daily. It is a part of our family. The North Carolina dealer we bought it from has tried to buy it back several times for their showroom. The fact they are long time family friends cuts them no slack. It is No Sale every time.

Last week she noticed a thunking sound in back. I checked on it and it seemed to be another broken engine mount. We had one break last year and these are hard to find. But we took it to the shop. This time we found several with out trouble, but it turns out we did not need one. The one we had was not broken at all. Just loose bolts in it.

Lon at McGuire's on Hwy 24 spent time fixing it yesterday. We went to pick it up this morning and he would not let us pay him one cent. It's not the first time he treated me like family. He does all our repair work. And is always fair and does a good job.

They have a 24 hour towing service also. Hwy 24 towing.

Isn't it rare to find a shop like this?

Thanks Lon

Today is D-day plus 63 years.

I know a couple of guys who were there. Thanks Gentlemen for doing what you did so we all can live and worship free.

Tuesday, June 05, 2007

I first felt it coming on Saturday. Sunday I felt better. Yesterday only fair. Today? It's a full fledge cold. All I want to do right now is sleep.

Updates later. If I survive.