Friday, December 31, 2010

Flashback Friday # 120

The Trial

A warm welcome to you on this last day of 2010. Perhaps you are bewildered at the title of this Flashback Friday post. If asking yourself how a trial has to do anything with childhood memories perplexes you, continue reading.

In our history class (the same one that had the slave auction)we held a mock trial. Here is the synopsis. A man was driving home from a party. He had four martinis while there. His car's defroster did not work properly. While he was wiping fog from the windshield, a boy ran from between two cars and was struck by this man's car and killed. His alcohol blood level was beneath the states limit for drunk driving. Is he responsible for the death of this child?

Mr. Bowser assigned everyone a role to play. He chose a judge, bailiff, 12 member jury, expert witnesses and defense and prosecuting attorney teams. I was one member of the three man prosecuting attorney team. The most popular boy in the class was chosen to be the car driver.

The defense kept hammering the point that the driver wasn't drunk. We kept hammering the point that, yes, he wasn't drunk, but he was impaired. We also pointed out the he knew his vehicle was unsafe, but continued to drive it.

Unlike the slave auction, that took all day, the trial was kept to the confines of the regular class schedule. Since this was the case, the trial lasted a week, given the testimonies from the various witness and the cross examination thereof.

On the day of closing arguments, I was chosen to give the closing argument for the prosecution. If I must say so myself, it was quite a rousing rendition. It would have made Perry Mason proud. However, since the jury was nine girls and three boys, the jury became hung on convicting the driver. The foreman argued that since the boy was jaywalking, the driver couldn't be held responsible. I personally think that the girls didn't want the popular, hunky boy to think that they didn't like him.

Since the jury was hung, there was no conviction. Mr. Bowser said that this was the first time that the driver hadn't been convicted. I have to wonder if he purposely selected jurors that he knew admired the popular boy.

That got me interested in possibly becoming a lawyer. Who knows, if the cost of law school wasn't so prohibitive to my family, it might have happened some day.

Wednesday, December 29, 2010

The Crowning Of The Champion

Our fantasy football league at the church ended Sunday with the team "Men Without Fear" taking the title. They made the playoffs as the #4 seed and knocked off #5("Huskers Rule The Big 10"). They then had to play #1 seed "Big Blue". A win over them put them in the "Super Bowl" against "Blake's Airforce (#6 seed) who knocked off #3 ("Harrys") and #2 ("Bible Thumpers"). The Men Without Fear team totally dominated Blake's Airforce to win the title plus the coveted Stanley's Cup trophy and the championship banner.(a close up of the trophy & banner can be seen here)

This is DD holding aloft is "valuable prizes".

In related news, I took the title in our work league for the 2nd time in a row and fifth time since we started 11 years ago.

Sunday, December 26, 2010

A Couple Of Seasonal Pics

Everyone takes pictures this time of year. I took a couple that I think are pretty neat.

These are the three wise men from our children's musical "Not So Silent Night". I should say that these are the three wise guys. I've had them all in my Sunday School class (two are currently there) therefore I should know. (That's my grandson "The Boy" in the middle.)

I had to get a picture of this . I spotted something unusual while I was out Christmas shopping with "The Ogre".

Yes, My friends, That is a Jaguar sitting in a Big Lots parking lot. I always thought that people who drove Jags shopped at Nieman Marcus or Saks Fifth Avenue. I found it humorous to see one at Big Lots (but then again, perhaps this is how he saved enough money to buy one).

Friday, December 24, 2010

Flashback Friday # 119

The Animated Christmas Classics

A hearty welcome to all who have taken the time in this busy, busy season to stop and read my ramblings. In today's post I discuss the classic Christmas cartoons. Since I was young before the advent of the VCR, if you missed them when they were on TV, you had to wait a whole year before you could see them again. We set up our TV watching schedule around these.

We now live in a world where you can watch these any time you want, thanks to video, DVD, TIVO and the Internet. I own several of them on VHS (yes I still have a working VCR). We make it a point to watch them every year.

When was the last time you saw any of them? When you watch them, do you really pay attention, or just go through the drill. Here are a few trivia questions for you to try. No peeking at the answers, Santa is watching and you'll wind up on the "naughty list".

Q: What does Lucy really want for Christmas in A Charlie Brown Christmas?
A. Cash
B. Real estate
C. A pony
D. Tickets to France

Q: What is Linus planning to do with his blanket when he grows up?
A. Perhaps turn it into a sports coat
B. Turn it into a quilt
C. Cover his car seat with it
D. Give it up

Q:What is the name of the drummer boy in The Little Drummer Boy?
B. Jonah
C. Ben
D. Aaron

Q:What was the problem with the Jack-in-the box in Rudolph the Red Nose Reindeer?
A. His spring is broken
B. His name is Charlie
C. His hinge is broken
D. His latch won't open

Q: In How the Grinch stole Christmas, Where was he going to dump the stuff he took?
A. From the top of Mt. Crumpet
B. From the top of Mt. Who
C. Into the Valley of Despair
D. The Whoville dump

Q. Who was the narrator of How the Grinch Stole Christmas?
A.Vincent Price
B. Orson Wells
C. Lon Chaney Jr.
D. Boris Karloff

Q. In Frosty the Snowman, what is the name of the magician?
A. Professor Wonder
B. Professor Marvel
C. Professor Magic
D. Hocus Pocus

Q: Who voiced Santa in both Santa Claus is Coming to Town AND The Year Without A Santa Claus?
A. Mickey Rooney
B. Buddy Hackett
C. Fred Astaire
D. Danny Kaye

Q: Who voiced characters in ALL the following classics: Rudolph the Red Nosed Reindeer, Frosty the Snowman, The Little Drummer Boy, Santa Claus is Coming to Town & Mr. Magoo's Christmas Carol?
A. Mel Blanc
B. Daws Butler
C. Sebastian Cabot
D. Paul Frees


The answers to the questions spell out bad bad bad. If you did bad, bad, bad on the quiz, come over and watch them with us.

Wednesday, December 22, 2010

A Riddle

On the the back of my Dilbert page-a-day calendar was a riddle. The riddle is "He who has it, doesn't tell. He who takes it doesn't know it. He who knows it doesn't want it. What is it?

The answer is counterfeit money. However, when I posed this question to a co-worker, his response was "An STD?" ROFL

Monday, December 20, 2010

Long Lines At The Pump

While travelling home today, I noticed that gas prices had shot up 20 cents a gallon from the price I paid this morning. While at a stop light, not far from my house, I saw nine cars vying to get into the local UDF to buy gas. There would have been more cars on the lot if the lot was bigger. Why the mad scramble to buy gas? UDF hadn't raised prices yet. They were at $2.82 per gallon while everyone else in town was at $3.05. I snapped a quick picture since the light was about ready to change.

Thank you big oil companies for gouging the public before the holidays. I hope you make it on Santa's naughty list.

Saturday, December 18, 2010

Wait. Did I Miss Something?

We were in the store today (December 18) and saw the most amazing thing.

Easter Candy! Whoa, wait a minute. Winter hasn't even officially begun (that comes Tuesday), and Spring is in the air? Did the Easter Bunny throw a body check and take out Santa? In the movie Nightmare Before Christmas, the Halloween folks kidnap Santa and try to do Christmas. Are the Easter Folk plotting the same thing? Here is a current picture from our front porch:

I could hide plenty of Easter eggs under the snow!!!! Come on retailers. Let us enjoy one holiday before you start pushing another.

Friday, December 17, 2010

Flashback Friday # 118

The Spelling Bee

A warm welcome on this chilly day to those who have stopped by. Today I bring fort a narrative that the Spellcheck will find hard to believe. (My Spellcheck thinks I'm an idiot.)

In 8th grade, we were given a 50 word spelling test. The top 25 spellers would compete for a chance to go to the county level. I was somewhat surprised to discover that I was among the top 25.

The 25 finalist met in the auditorium one night. The school wanted the parents to be able to watch and cheer on their children. It was a good sized crowd.
One by one the kids misspelled words. Round one finished and I was still going. Round two went by. Round three I was still unscathed. By this time, There was only five students remaining. These were going on to the county spelling bee.

Round four saw the field whittled to four. I was up. My word was "submerge". I spelled it as "submerdge". I finished fourth. My best friend, Bart, finished third.

The county spelling bee was held in Cardington, my Mom's hometown. The school there had a visiting dignitary who agreed to be the Spell Master. She was from New England.

Needless to say, her New England accent was a bit harsh on our mid-western ears. In the second round, she asked me to spell "Huwisk". My eyes got big, I gulped, and said, "Huwisk, h-u-w-i-s-k. Huwisk" That is incorrect she bellowed. The proper spelling is w-h-i-s-k. I guess in New England, you pronounce the WH words as HW. Around here, Wheat is pronounced "weet". Whisk is pronounced "wisk". Nevertheless, I was out.

None of the kids from my school fared too well. It just hwasn't our night.

Thursday, December 16, 2010

Ta Da! Itsa Contada

We've practiced Sunday. We practiced Tuesday. We practiced Tonight (Thursday). We've been practicing for a couple of months now. This coming Sunday is the big day. 6PM at ACC. Be there if you can.

All I can say is that the voice I use in hitting some of the HIGH notes would make Pee Wee Herman sound like a manly man.

Friday, December 10, 2010

Flashback Friday # 117

Political correctness did not exist in this game

Welcome back one and all. In today's post we cover a game we played in school that would have the PC Police beside themselves today. I'm sure the game is still played today, but under a different name. What it's name is today, I have no clue. The game I am talking about is "Smear the Queer".

The rules are very simple. First you need a football. You throw said football. Everyone races to it. Whoever picks up the football becomes "The Queer" and everyone else tries to tackle, or "Smear" the ball carrier, hence the name.

Those of us who were manly men took the brunt of punishing tackles with a glint in our eyes and a grunt emanating from our lips. Many times it took three to four people to bring me down, with my low center of gravity and keen sense of balance. Those who lacked manliness would fling the football over their shoulder as soon as a would-be tackler breathed down their neck.

This game was a game for all seasons. You could play when it was sunny. You could play in the snow. You could even play in the rain (but what a mess). When we played it at school, in the snow, we had to sit the rest of the day in cold, wet pants.

We would play until lunch time was over, or until someone got hurt, whichever came first. If someone got hurt, the teacher would always say "I told you someone would get hurt roughhousing like that". Do people even use the word "roughhousing" anymore?

Wednesday, December 8, 2010

Amusing T-Shirts

I work every year at our county fair and at the sweet corn festival. I also go out every year on Black Friday. I have seen some very amusing t-shirts. Here is what some of them say:

"If life gives you melons, you might be dyslexic."

"Warning, If zombies are chasing us, I'm tripping you."

"Dear Math, I am not a therapist. Solve your own problems."

"The only thing we have to fear is fear itself...and spiders."

"I support recycling. I wore this yesterday."

"Pyros of the world, Ignite."

"I am disappointment in you're grammar."

"An apple a day will keep anyone away, if thrown hard enough."

"I have not yet begun to procrastinate."

"I'm confused. Oh wait, maybe I'm not."

"5/4ths of people have trouble with fractions."

"If life gives you lemons, keep them. Because, hey, free lemons."

"Why don't hedgehogs just share the hedge?"

"I'm a vegetarian, except for meal time."

Friday, December 3, 2010

Flashback Friday # 116

Goodbye Pauline

Greetings to all who have stopped by for a spell and to those who have accidentally stumbled upon my ranting & reminisces.

All (or should I say both) of you who read my Flashback Fridays for a while, know of my infatuation with Pauline Pershing, my neighbor when I was a teen. She was the first girl that I was ever "in love" with, even though she wouldn't give me the time of day.

One day, when the school bus was coming down the road, I noticed that Pauline hadn't come out of her house yet. Both of her parent's cars were still in the driveway. Perhaps she's sick? I never had both parents stay home with me when I was sick. I got on the bus and hoped she was feeling better when I got home.

When I got home, I was taken completely off guard. Not only were both of her parent's cars gone, but everything else of theirs was too. They had moved away while I was in school. I had no clue as to where they moved to. I was heart broken.

A couple of years later, I was at our county seat (home of the Rat Palace movie theater, see Flashback Friday #91) when who do you think I ran into? If you said "Pauline and her family", you would be correct. There had been several issues with their house that the landlord hadn't fixed, so they found a different house, closer to their dad's work.

When I saw her, all the old feelings I had for her came flooding back. I asked her what time it was, she told me she didn't have a watch. She still wouldn't give me the time of day. I did eventually get over her, but that is a topic for another time & another post.

Did you ever have a "crush" on someone that was hard to shake?

Wednesday, December 1, 2010

Too Cool

This is a really cool optical illusion. Don't worry, nothing is going to scream at you and scare you. I promise.

Sunday, November 28, 2010

I Need To Be Careful Or I Might Get Penalized.

Many of you are aware of the fact that THE Ohio State Buckeyes put a whooping on the team up north again (37-7 final score). I did not see the game, but I listened to it in it's entirety on the flagship home of Buckeye sports.

The Buckeyes played in throwback uniforms that honored the 1942 OSU team that won the National Championship (of which 8 of them are still alive and were in attendance). These uniforms were designed by Nike and (I assume) OK'ed by the NCAA (if they weren't OK'ed, how were they able to use them?). I've read that a lot of people think the flag patch was sewn on backwards. It is the military version. When the cavelry charged, the standard bearer carried the flag on a pole. This is what it looked like while charging into battle. The USA was in a war in 1942 for those of you who don't know history too well.

The thing that gets me is that OSU was called for excessive celebration after scoring. The gloves are designed to form a "Block O" when brought together.

This is excessive celebration? Where are the penalty flags when Oregon (currently ranled at #1 in the BCS poll) does the exact same thing? No flags either on the Gator chomp, Longhorn hook 'em, Alabama A, Seminole tomahawk chop, etc. Do the refs actually have it out for OSU? Perhaps I shouldn't ask that. I might get hit with a "Questioning the authority of the referees" foul. That's half the distance to the goal & automatic first down.

Friday, November 26, 2010

Flashback Friday # 115

Can I Play Football?

Greeting to those who have taken time to stop by.

Since Thanksgiving was yesterday, and I've blogged before about what we ate (or I didn't, due to being a picky eater), I will direct this post-Thanksgiving post (did I lose you there?) on the other aspect of Thanksgiving, football.

Near the end of my 8th grade year, the reserve football coach from the High School called a meeting of all those who would be freshmen next year, and interested in playing football. There was some talk that, if there was enough participation, a 9th grade football team would be formed. This would be totally separate from the reserve team that the Freshmen currently played on.

Each boy was given a permission slip and a physical to be filled out by a doctor. My folks said I could, and Gattabout gave his support. An appointment was set for the physical.

When we got to the doctor's office, we waited our turn in line. Since we lived in a small town, and there was only one doctor, you sometimes had to wait a while. His office always had a very antiseptic smell to it. Anytime I drive by the former office, which is now some body's house, I wonder if it still smells the same way.

But I digress. The doctor rendered me fit and we paid the bill. I was excited. When we got home, Mom told me that she had been talking to Aunt Bonnie on the phone, and mentioned that I was going to play football. She reminded Mom that her youngest son played football and broke his leg. Mom didn't like the idea of me breaking my leg. She had changed her mind about me playing football.

Since I wasn't allowed to play organized football, I played it with even more gusto on the playground. I don't ever recall breaking my leg playing football.

Thursday, November 25, 2010

Coming Soon To A Store Near You

I'm planning on going out with "The Ogre" somewhere after 4 AM tomorrow. I always wear a hockey jersey when I go shopping on Black Friday because if a fight breaks out, I want to be dressed for it. Call me crazy. Everyone else does.

Monday, November 22, 2010

Quotes To Live By

I've mentioned before that on the back of my Dilbert page-a-day calendar are puzzles, trivia, this day in history and quotes. There are two quotes that have shown up recently that have set some calm to the raging storms that have surrounded me the last couple of months.

The first one is by American poet Paul Eldridge:
"To judge a man's character by only one of its manifestations is like judging the sea by a jugful of it's water."

The second is by American writer,publisher, artist and philosopher Elbert Hubbard:
"Never explain. Your friends do not need it and your enemies will not believe it anyway."

I don't know if they did anything for you, but they sure did me a world of good.

Friday, November 19, 2010

Flashback Friday # 114

Taping The Football Team

Greetings one and all. Allow me to rewind history. Let's cue up the scene selection. In short, we get to look at the time where I, and my friend Juan Gorillis, got to be the guys up in the press box.

It started innocently enough. We were approached by the Jr. high football coach mainly (I think) because we were the only guys big enough to play that weren't. He wanted to know if we would want to tape the 8th grade football games so the team could review them later in the week. The high school kid who was doing it would be starting an after school job, and would be unable to tape the final three games. We got permission from our parents, and got the position.

Our first day we met at the high school field for our instructor to show up. Our Jr. high didn't have a football field of it's own, so the Jr. High played during the week, when the High School team wasn't using the field.

Our instructor was an 11th grader who was in the Media Club. He helped us tote the equipment up into the press box. We set up the camera on a tripod and set the recorder on a table. This was not a VHS recorder. This was an old reel-to-reel recorder (this was 1978). Once the film was fed through the recorder, we were ready to go. One of us would run the camera, while the other watched the film to make sure it didn't tangle or jam. As soon as he showed us how everything worked, he left. He said he would be back near the end of the game to help take everything back into the school.

While we were waiting for the game to start, I looked out toward the road. A Sheriff's Deputy had pulled a car over. It looked like it was Sir Gattabout. It WAS Sir Gattabout. (Sorry this is out of chronological order, I just remembered this the other day) I whipped the camera around and we did out visual quality check on his traffic stop. There was no audio to this set up. Good thing because we were a couple of jabber jaws.

Once the game started, we commenced to filming. I would run the camera for a quarter, then Juan would trade off. This way we both got to run both pieces of equipment. Near the end of the game, we looked like we were going to have a problem. It looked like we were going to run out of tape, and there wasn't an extra to install.

Almost as soon as we began to fret about this, out instructor showed back up. We told him our concerns. He didn't understand why that would happen. Then he asked if we had turned the tape off in between plays. Turn the tape off in between plays??? NOBODY had said anything about doing that !!! Immediately we began doing that, but to no avail. Shortly after we ran out of tape, the opposing team scored, ruining the shutout. After the game we took everything back in, but we didn't tell the coach that we ran out of tape.

He found out during the tape session with the team. He pulled us aside and instructed us in the way more perfectly. He didn't appreciate the traffic stop at the beginning either (oops, we forgot to rewind that). The breakdown in the defense was forever lost since we didn't catch it on tape because we had run out.

The following week, we arrived to do our job again. We knew what to do and how to correctly do it. We were determined not to mess up. There was only one problem, Our media instructor failed to show. No equipment, no key to the press box, no way home until after the game. Now what? We were pressed into service doing the down marker and measurement chains on the sidelines. Two fat boys running back & forth onto the field to measure and up & down following the ball was enough to gas us.

The following week everything clicked in place. We filmed the game (the WHOLE game) and did a good job of it. The only problem was, it was the last game. Now that we figured everything out, the season was over. Both Juan and I joined the Media Club when we got to High School.

Thursday, November 18, 2010

Terror In A Small Town

Normally, this blog deals with the funny side of life. There is absolutely nothing funny about this post. Anyone who hasn't been living under a rock has heard of the family in Central Ohio who have been missing since last Wednesday.

Sunday morning, the 13 year old girl was found bound & gagged in a house that is a two minute drive from my grandson's school. Security measures have been stepped up dramatically at his school. A nearby park with a pond (actually a former gravel quarry) has been searched extensively. One of the teachers said that the frequent fly-overs by search helicopters keep the windows rattling constantly

The home owner is currently being held on a kidnapping charge. As of yesterday he was not cooperating with authorities. A couple of former service members from my church have volunteered to "assist" the sheriff's office in the questioning of this man.

This morning volunteers met at the Sheriff's office to help in the search for the remaining three missing persons. The searches were to concentrate on wooded areas, of which our county has many. The other day, the Sheriff stated that the longer the remaining family members are missing, the hope of finding them alive diminishes. Today, the worst was confirmed.

According to the news conference, the kidnapping suspect told the Sheriff where to search. The Sheriff said they probably wouldn't have found them without this information. Homicide charges are pending. Currently here are no other suspects according to the Sheriff.

You don't expect something like this to happen in a small town like ours. (Actually it is a city, the county seat, but it's not all that big). Things like this happen in Columbus, Cincinnati or Cleveland, not here. One lady at my church put it best,"This is a sleepy little town. How could something like this happen here?".

Several prayer vigils are being held in the next several days. Please pray for the families of those involved with this tragedy.

Tuesday, November 16, 2010

Hello Dollies

Up in the "toy room" I had a small tin box of dollies that came in bags of toys purchased second hand. I originally kept these for "Princess Splenda" or "Miss A" to play with, but they didn't seem too interested in them. However, when I brought them out for "The Girl" to play with, it was love at first sight.

She had a wonderful time. The blue thing in her hand is the small brush that was in the tin.
She brushed the hair of the dolls who had it. She kissed on them. She jabbered like a Chinaman to them. There was about $1.99 spent on those dollies. It was money well spent.

Friday, November 12, 2010

Flashback Friday # 113

Uncle Charles

Greeting to one and all. I hope you are doing well. Welcome back to another edition of Flashback Friday. Seeing that Veteran's Day was yesterday,in today's edition you will get to learn a little about the most colorful veteran I knew while growing up. My Great Uncle Charles. He looked a little like actor Jack Albertson (only with glasses).

Uncle Charles lived in Chicago, and would come over to visit my Grandmother about twice a year at her house in Westerville. Everybody loved it when he came because he had a great sense of humor. He also wasn't beyond lavishing everyone with gifts. We kids especially liked him. It was a child's dream to approach a candy counter at a department store and hear the grown-up in charge say "pick out whatever you want".

Uncle Charles was born in Central Ohio, and enlisted in the Army when WWII broke out. He was sent to the European theater. I overheard him telling a story about the fighting during The Battle Of The Bulge. He wouldn't tell combat stories to us kids, so we would have to sneak and try to garner bits of information. He gave Grandma a scrapbook of stamps from all the countries he was in. He also gave her other mementos from the war:

Pictured are a hat, sleeve patches, a Luftwaffe armband and buckle and a small U.S. Army flag. I got these after Grandma passed.

Not only did he like to drop money on us kids, he liked to drop money on the ponies. Central Ohio is home to two large horse racing tracks, and he went to them both every time he visited. Since Grandma didn't drive, and he usually flew in, he would get a cab to one, catch a cab to the other, then catch a cab back to her house. Nobody was allowed to go with him when he went to "play the ponies". Rumor had it, he had some "connections" back in Chicago.

We were saddened when we received the news that he had contracted lung cancer (he was a HEAVY smoker). He wasn't given long. When he passed, he was flown in to Westerville for the funeral. He was interned in my hometown of Marengo.

Thursday, November 11, 2010

An Offensive Garfield Comic Strip?

Today's "Garfield" comic strip may be considered offensive by some to veterans. Yes we are talking about the same fat, lasagna eating cat. Cartoonist Jim Davis makes the strips months in advance and today's strip deals with spiders talking about "National Stupid Day". In case you didn't realize it yet, today is Veteran's Day.

Mr. Davis wrote a profound apology. You can see the strip, and read the apology he wrote by clicking here.
BTW- I loved some of the comments on this story by our veterans. God bless them all.

Friday, November 5, 2010

Flashback Friday # 112

Maternal Grandparents

Greetings one and all. Welcome back to this little plot of cyberspace that I call Flashback Friday. I have described my paternal grandparents who lived in Westerville, but I have yet to mention my maternal grandparents. This post is to remedy that.

My maternal grandparents lived in a "suburb" of our county seat. I can only remember being there a few times. I do remember, however, that under no circumstances did you ever leave anything there. Grandpa said that if something of yours spent the night at his house, it became his. I also remember, thanks to my brother bringing it up, that he had a talking crow named Joe.

Grandpa had a motorcycle with a sidecar that he rode to most places. At least most places that he didn't want Grandma to go with him. She was, being politically correct, caloricly challenged. She had a hard time squeezing herself into the sidecar. She drove her car to wherever she was going.

One evening, when I was 5 or 6, Grandpa headed off to bingo with some of my relatives (he loved bingo, as does most of Mom's family). While on the way, he suffered a massive heart attack. He died before they could get him to the hospital.

One of the stranger things that I can recall, happened at his funeral. The funeral was over, and the family was headed to the graveside service. As we were getting out of the car, I told my Mom, "Look, there's Grandpa in the sky". Mom felt a child of my age wouldn't be making something like that up.

Grandma lived another 4 years after Grandpa's demise. One of the funniest stories that I can remember about her happened at our house. We had hosted a family get together. In doing so, we had to haul out the folding chairs. She chose one of these to sit in. While folks were outside enjoying every one's company, Grandma stayed inside to watch TV. She fell asleep while watching. As she slept, her posterior squeezed itself through the opening of the folding chair like a play dough fun factory. Dad walked in and saw her rear hanging down and let out a laugh so loud that it woke her up. she yelled at him to stop laughing, and help her out of the chair.

When I was 9, Grandma passed away, also of a heart attack.

Mom has a picture of them together, so I took a picture of it with my cell phone. Mom was fascinated that I could do such a thing. Here is a picture of my maternal grandparents:

Wednesday, November 3, 2010

EVERYBODY!!!! It's Time To Do The Happy Dance!

Today I was informed that this week will be my final week of being Nanny at work. Yay. Yay.

Saturday, October 30, 2010

People Are Awesome

I found this video and watched it with my jaw on the floor. I can only imagine the blooper video that could be made from the "misses". Please don't try any of this at home because these people are way more crazy than anyone who would ever read my blog. Click the image below to see the video.

see more Epic Win FTW

Friday, October 29, 2010

Flashback Friday # 111

My Girl

Welcome back to my faithful readers. Both of you should enjoy this post dealing with young love.

It has been well chronicled (see Flashback Friday #65,103 & 109) that I was infatuated with Pauline Pershing, my teenage neighbor. It is also well chronicled that she didn't like me, but only had eyes for the neighbor on the other side, Sneaky Crook. I think she got tired of the attention that I was payng her, and decided she needed to do something about it.

We were having a yard sale, and Mom had some of her costume jewelry in it. All the Pershing girls were looking over the jewelry like pirates looking through a treasure chest. They didn't have any money, so I gave them some, since sales were slow anyway. I also had a baggie of home made hard tack candy which I offered some, but only Tess took me up on the offer.

Later that evening I was talking to Pauline when she mentioned she had noticed how much attention that I had been paying Tess. I asked her what she was talking about. She replied that I must like Tess a lot because I had given her jewelry and candy (costume jewelry and home made hard tack, how romantic). She said if I wanted, she could ask her for me, if she would be my girlfriend.

This was going WAY too fast. I had never had a real girlfriend before. I stammered & yammered and finally said "OK".

She left, and a few minutes later, came back with Tess in tow. Tess had told Pauline that she liked me, but I don't think she thought she had a chance because I liked Pauline so much. With me out of the way, it freed Pauline to put the full court press on Sneaky.

The next day I rode my bike into Marengo and went into the corner drug store. I had noticed that behind the candy display was a small display of rings. I had a girlfriend, therefore I must buy her a ring. I plunked down $2.00 for a golden, adjustable banded ring with a red stone. Red because red is the color of love. Tess loved it.

A few weeks later, back at the swimming hole, she told me that she didn't love me any more. I was devastated. I stormed back home, slammed the front door as hard as I could, then turned and punched the wall as hard as I could. It was made of drywall, so my fist should have made a sizable hole in the wall. A word of warning, when punching a drywall wall, don't hit it where the stud is. I dented the drywall, but nearly broke my hand. If you knew where the impression of my fist was, you could see it, but to the untrained eye, it was invisible.

Tess was only the first of many who would break my heart in this crazy little thing called young love.

Do you remember you first "steady"?

Wednesday, October 27, 2010

Spring Is Here?

Here in Ohio, we are currently in Indian Summer. Temperatures have been in the high 60's-low 70's. Tomorrow's high is supposed to be in the high 50's, which makes this picture so funny:

For those of you who can't figure out what this is, it is a violet. My front yard has lots of little violets coming up, just like they do in the Spring. Oh, I wish.

Sunday, October 24, 2010

Sunday Summary

Here's some stuff that happened this week that I didn't get a chance to blog about.

Monday I took "The Boy" out to our local bike path. The two prior day had been very nice, but also very busy. I had promised him a trip to the path so he could get some time in with his chopper bike we bought for him at a yard sale.

I picked him up from school, swung by the house and loaded up the bikes, and off we went. It had been looking overcast most of the day, but wasn't supposed to rain until evening. On the way to the path, raindrops hit the windshield. I told "The Boy" that if started raining we would have to turn back, but a few sprinkles wouldn't deter us. He was fine with that. We rode a mile out, then a mile back (that's two miles for those of you who weren't counting). That's him pictured ahead of me in the picture below. As we were putting the bikes back in the truck, the rain began to fall steadily. Thank you Lord for letting me get that time in with my grandson.

Tuesday we cleaned in preparation for the small group Bible study we host monthly at our home. Wednesday we had it.

Thursday wasn't real good, so you'll just have to use your imagination.

Friday, I took off work (vacation day) and went to my parents house to take out old cabinets & install new cabinets. There was noting wrong with the old cabinet except that Mom is short and can't reach to the back of the counter. There is also limited counter space.

After Dad left to tend to a rental, Mom & I decided to leave the old cabinets and install the new ones at the other end of the kitchen. This necessitated moving out a spare refrigerator and a small chest freezer to the utility shed (which has electricity) and removing the kitchen table (which was actually a patio set). Nobody ever ate at the table, and it had become a catch all.

After the cabinets were installed, Dad came home. He wasn't too happy about the table being gone ("I like sitting at the table and eating." "When was the last time you did that? You always eat while watching TV"). I left about that time.

Saturday, I helped move a single mom at our church. Five of us men had all her "heavy stuff" moved in an hour and 15 minutes. "We are manly men" was the catch phrase. She said she could move the boxes throughout the week in her car. I then went to our local Habitat For Humanity Re-Store and bought a counter top for the cabinets I installed for Mom on Friday. After we cut it to size, this is what the finished product looked like:

Mom was ECSTATIC about her new kitchen. After I left, and was a few blocks from my house, I got a call from from my daughter,"The Ogre", stating that Grandma had told her that she could have the patio set if she wanted it. Would I please take her to got get it. So back to my parents I went again and picked up the set. Dad told me that I was right about "When Momma is happy, everybody is happy". I went home, finished the laundry that I had been doing here & there since Friday morning and headed off to the store with my wife. When we got back & put our purchases away, I went to bed.

Today, I am writing this post. We then have Sunday School, Will go out to eat, take a nap (YAY! I love naps) and we have our annual Singspiration tonight, were anyone get the oportunity to sing. Your all invited.

Friday, October 22, 2010

Flashback Friday # 110

Star Wars

Greetings Earthlings and intergalactic visitors. I'm sure everyone who is reading this has seen Star Wars at least once in their life. this post is about the very first time I saw it, when it first hit the theater.

We had read about the soon-to-be-released sci-fi flick in our READ magazine in English class. It sounded like it was going to be great. I kept my eyes open for a nearby theater to advertise it. Finally, a large movie house in Westerville announced it would be running it.

Dad said I could take someone with me, so I asked if we could go over to Aunt Shelly's to pick up Skeeter. When we got there, we discovered that he was working for a nearby farmer. Chawly was still there, so I asked him to come along.

We rode to Westerville in the back of Chuck's pick-up truck (Chuck was Dad's best friend.). We were let off at the theater, with ticket money and a couple dollars for snacks. We then ventured inside for a viewing of one of the best movies that I had ever seen in my young life. Space ships! Laser guns! Aliens! Laser guns! Robots! Who wouldn't want to watch this movie? Did I mention laser guns?

When the movie was over we waited a few minutes for Dad to pick up up (this was before cell phones). Chawly and I spent the time rehashing all the exciting things we had just seen. Boy, Did Skeeter ever miss out.

Dad finally got there to pick us up, and we climbed into the back of the truck. Shortly after we began our 35-40 mile trip back home, it began to rain. Not mist, or thunderstorm, but one of those good ol' soaking rains. There wasn't room inside the truck for us, seeing that there were already four adults in the cab of the truck. A blanket was brought out from behind the seat, and we used that to try to stay dry. Needless to say, we were soaked when we got home.

I saw Star Wars several times after that. I convinced Gattabout to go see it when we visited him at his Army base. He had never seen it before. He actually went to a walk in theater to see it (he preferred drive-ins). Another time it was playing at a drive in when he came home on leave. We watched the two movies on our side of the drive in, then snuck over to the other screen to catch Star Wars again. Later, one of the drive-in employees knocked on our window and said "You can go home now." We had fallen asleep.

I found the Star Wars Trilogy on ebay prior to "Episode 1" coming out for $5. It was VHS, but we still have a working VHS player, so I thought it was a great buy. "The Boy" has seen it several times, and enjoys it just as much as I do every time I see it again.

Do you have a movie that you can see time & time again?

Sunday, October 17, 2010

A Trip To The Llama Farm

Yesterday we visited McFarland's Llama Farm for their "Open Barn". The weather cooperated giving us a sunny day in the mid 60's. "The Boy" is old enough to see the sights for himself, so once he got a cookie or two, he was off. "The Girl", had to stay with us (or at least in relative proximity). She loved looking at the llamas & alpacas.

She even got to pet a couple of them, and one of them gave her a kiss. This was taken right after the kiss. It's hard to hold a baby & take pictures at the same time.

There were other animals there too like goats and rabbits. Here is "The Girl" discovering the the fuzzy goodness of an angora rabbit.

By the time we got home, she was worn out and took a two hour nap.

Friday, October 15, 2010

Flashback Friday # 109

The Swimming Hole

Greeting to all who have ventured this way again. Autumn is here bringing chilly breezes and cold rains. I figured I'd give you one more warm summery post to take the chill off your blog reading.

It has been told many a time in these posts that I spent a great deal of time back at the creek behind our house. I've also told you many a time that I (still) cannot swim. You would think I would have caused my parents many sleepless nights by spending so much time back at the creek. I was never told not to go, so I assumed that I had perpetual permission to be there.

My neighbors were back there a lot too. The WWE kids, the Butcher boys, The Pershing girls and the Crooks all spent time with me back at the creek. There was a mile long segment that we always stayed in. That was about to change.

One day, a couple of the Crook boys told us of a deep section of the creek that they found. Under normal circumstances, the creek was about waist deep at the deepest point we navigated. They said they had gone up the creek a bit and found an even deeper spot (seeing that sticky fingers were a common past time with the Crooks, going "up the river" seemed prophetic).

When we (me, 3 Crook boys & 4 Pershing girls) got to the spot, we realized that this would make a great swimming place if we could do some improvements. In a spot that was about 15 feet square, we took out as many large rocks as we could, making the water chest deep. We put these rocks downstream to make a small dam. It wasn't very effective, but it did widen the creek at that point a bit.

We had no tree nearby, or bank in which to dive from. We simple waded out, and swam (except for me, I waded out and waded). The one attempt to tie a rope to a tree ended in failure. The closet limb would get you as far as the ankle deep water at the bank. Swing & let go to try to make the deep point landed you in knee deep water.

If it wasn't for the presence of the Pershings, I never would have gone back to the swimming hole. I didn't care too much for the Crooks. It didn't help matters that I was infatuated with the eldest Pershing girl. She didn't know I existed. She only had eyes Sneaky Crook, the second oldest.

After the Pershings moved away, I seldom went back to the swimming hole. If The Crooks were back there, I stayed away, or visited my old stomping ground down the creek. After the Crooks moved, I don't think I ever visited it again.

Tuesday, October 12, 2010

Coffee with meme & sugar

My wife tagged me for an eight question meme (rhymes with cream). She must want me to come out from beneath my blog rock that I've been hiding under. Here goes:

1)Do you have a favorite love song that makes you feel warm and fuzzy?
I have liked the song "Touch Of The Master's Hand" by Wayne Watson from the time I first heard it (20 some years ago). It still blesses me today.

2)Do you remember the first time you really felt God tugging at your heart? Where were you and how did it make you feel?
I had been invited a couple of times to a church by a girl at school in the ninth grade. Early in the eleventh grade, I was invited by my best friend. I didn't know that they were the same denomination. When I put 2 & 2 together, I figured that God was trying to tell me something. I haven't left.

3)Do you remember a particular time when someone encouraged or complimented you and it changed your whole attitude, giving you a better day?
I had just tracked down some missing parts for my supervisor. After I told him of their whereabouts, as I was leaving, I heard one of the other supervisors ask "Where can I find someone like that for me?" It made my day.

4)What is/was your very favorite subject in school and why?
I love history. You get a chance to see how things were done, and contemplate how things might now be if things were done differently.

5)What is your preference of a pet - dog, cat, fish, or none?
I am a dog person. I have had some very loyal dogs. Cats are too aloof.

6)Name one thing that you really like about your personality.
I can find humor in almost all things. It's one of my main coping mechanisms.

7)Name one thing that you would like to improve about yourself.
I would like to be able to feel comfortable around folks that I don't know well. People who don't know me well tell my wife that I'm really quiet. If you know me well, you know that's not really true.

8)Name one thing that you are very thankful for and can't imagine living without.
Faith. Now faith is the substance of hings hoped for, the evidence of things not seen. Hebrews 11:1. Even when I can't feel God, I KNOW he is there.

I'm supposed to tag others. Since , other than my wife, I only have three readers on this blog, and Mrs. Lemon was tagged in the same post that tagged my wife, that leaves only Jewel & Mrs. Nurse Boy. If you decide to answer the questions, please leave me a comment so I can check out your answers.

Saturday, October 9, 2010

Animals Are Such Animals

Here are a few video clips to show that you shouldn't mess with animals. They will get revenge.
funny GIFs - U haz noms over dere?

funny gifs - Prank Dog

funny gifs - Ninja Monkey

He Wishes He Was Chicken Gif - He Wishes He Was Chicken

funny gif - Hide the ball will you? Take That!

I hope these tickled you as much as they did me.

Friday, October 8, 2010

Flashback Friday # 108

The Slave Auction

Hello you wonderful folks, glad to have you back for another edition of Flashback Friday. (At least I hope someone is reading this, otherwise I'm talking to myself, and you know where that leads, don't you? I sure do.)

Today's post is about my 8th grade American history class. I've discussed "Mr. Bowser" in previous posts. He was one of the most unusual teachers that I had. He Incorporated game shows and role playing in the history class so learning was fun. History is still one of my favorite subjects.

This post is about a role playing session about pre-Civil War slavery.This particular class took longer than normal, as it was done every year. Our other teachers got a break from us since this class lasted most of the day.

In our class of 30 kids, we each were given a role to play. 14 kids (seven boys & seven girls) were couples looking for a slave to purchase at the local slave auction. Each of the couples had a scenario, monetary limits, and a specific type of slave to attempt to purchase. I was a buyer looking for a slave to help move my wife & me to Missouri. Others needed workers for farming or domestic help.

Five boys were the slaves. Five slaves, seven buyers. Someone would go home empty handed. There was an auctioneer, and his helpers. There were also five abolitionist present to protest. Bart (see Flashback Friday #107) was one of the abolitionist. Once everyone was prepped,the auction began.

As the auctioneer began, each slave was lead to a platform to be displayed. As the auctioneer began, the abolitionist would yell and protest. As each slave was sold, the abolitionist would jeer & catcall. Finally the auctioneer had enough. He ordered his men to throw out the abolitionists.

As his men were "escorting" the abolitionists out, the back door to the classroom was flung open and the slaves made a break for it. "The slaves are escaping" cried the auctioneer. Mr. Bowser said there was a reward for anyone who captured a slave. He had discussed with those playing slaves that they had to stay on the school property, and anyone staying hid for an hour, escaped to freedom.

The race was on. One was found right away hiding under one of the teacher's cars. Another was caught behind a tree at the border of the property. One by one, the slaves were brought back in. There was still one missing.

Down the corridor where my locker used to be was a utility access closet that all the water lines to the bathrooms ran. This was off limits to the student population, but would a slave think to hide there? I ventured in with a couple of fellow hunters. There was no light (at least we couldn't find a switch. Breaker box maybe?) so we had to venture in by feel. I was in the lead. Midway back, my hand brushed over something clammy & wet. Ew! I didn't know what it was, but I didn't care to stay in there much longer. We abandoned our search .

While the hour ticked by, the slaves that hadn't been sold yet were put back on the auction block. Since the missing slave had already been purchased, there were now seven bidders for four slaves. I was unable to find any help to move to Missouri with the funds that I had.

At the end of the hour, the one slave still hadn't been found. An announcement was made over the P.A. that the slave had attained freedom. If he could hear the announcement, come back to the room. A few minutes later, he walked back in. He said he had been hiding in the utility access closet, and someone had actually put their hand on his head. He had been running, and was sweaty. His sweaty, wet hair was what I had felt in the dark.

Mr. Bowser had a wrap up secession at the end of the class. We learned that the purchase of fellow human beings like they were livestock was wrong. We also learned that when someone has strong opinions about a matter, it is difficult to get them to see different. We also learned that escaping slaves could and would take drastic measures not to be recaptured.

I told my wife that I think that Mr. Bowser not only influenced my love of history, but also influenced my teaching style. In my Sunday School class, we role play quite a bit (the kids love it). I don't have those kids every day, like he had us, but if I can influence just one of them to dig a little deeper into The Word, or pique interest in a Bible story, it's well worth the dressing up and being silly.

Wednesday, October 6, 2010

One Of Them "Duh Moments"

As I was driving home from church tonight, I got to thinking, "My two year blogging anniversary is coming up soon. I believe it was in October of 2008 when I started blogging." When I got home, I checked the date of my first post.


My blogiversary was back in August. I've posted 18 times since the date ("Have shear, will travel" was posted on the second year anniversary of my starting this blog).

At least It wasn't my wedding anniversary that I "misremembered".

Monday, October 4, 2010

Sword Of The Spirit

Each month my church recognises a man who has shown Godly leadership. Last month, that award was presented to me. A sword is used as a symbol of the spiritual armor we are to put on in Ephesians 6:10-18.

At the middle of last year, all the men were presented with a ceremonial prayer shawl (lovingly crafted by my wonderful wife). At the beginning of this year, we were also given a covenant to sign. It states:

By the grace of God I will be faithful...

In regular church attendance.

To the Prayer room before service and personal prayer life.

To prayer at the altar after service both personally and for others.

To regular Bible reading and study.

In praise and worship in spirit and truth.

In tithes and offerings.

In the physical upkeep of the church

In the reverence of the house of God.

In leading as the head of my household.

In separation and holiness.

In living and promoting the spirit of unity and cooperation.

In living and promoting fellowship & hospitality.

In sharing my faith by teaching Bible studies and witnessing.

In sharing my faith by teaching my family in leadership through Bible studies.

In finding and fulfilling a personal ministry.

Saturday, we stopped by Jo-Mongous Fabric store and found everything to make an attractive wall mount for it all. Pictured below is the framed covenant, the prayer shawl and the Sword of the Spirit award.

This hangs in our living room, visible to all who enter Castle Nottaguy. My wife (who is quite the Bible scholar) wanted to fashion a hanger for the sword out of a three fold cord (see Ecclesiastes 4:12) of blue, red and gold.

She said that since the sword is symbolic, we might as well go all out with symbolism. The blue represents purity. The red represents the blood of Christ. The gold represents heaven. The sword can also be easily taken down to take to church every month when a new recipient is named.

This award wasn't given because of what was lived in the past. It represents a call to right living and faithfulness. There have been times recently that I felt very undeserving. I cannot change the past. I can change the future. With God's help, I plan to do that.

Friday, October 1, 2010

Flashback Friday # 107

My Enemy Becomes My Friend

Hello. Thanks for stopping by and spending a few minutes in my corner of the Internet. In today's edition of Flashback Friday we look into the interesting phenomena of how two people who couldn't stand each other become best friends.

In the school district that I went to (K-12) there were two Elementary schools and kids from these two schools came together in Jr. High. I had made some new friends from the Elementary. One of these friends was Jeb. We got along very well. there was only one problem. Jeb had a friend from Elementary that I couldn't stand, and he wasn't none too thrilled with Jeb having a new friend.

This kid's name was Bart. Bart was a brat. In fact, several people called him that. Whenever I would be talking to Jeb on the playground, Bart would come up behind me an smack the back of my head and race off. Since he was quicker than I was (me being a fatboy), I was never able to catch him. He would whack me, scamper off and laugh like a hyena. This went on all through 7th grade.

8th grade wasn't much better. Then something changed. Several months after school started, we had a new kid move to our school. Jim Olympus was the kid's name. He was in my home room, and since he got to school after lockers were assigned, he needed a locker. I was one of the lucky few that didn't have to share a locker. I volunteered to share my locker with him.

I found out after a few days, that this decision wasn't one of my better ones. Jim was a bit of an odd bird. I guess his folks moved around a lot. He was one of those kids who didn't fit into any category. I tried to make friends with him, but I guess I wasn't the type of person he wanted to hang with.

He started hanging with Derrick, one of the biggest hoods in school. Derrick was just plain creepy. He would be in trouble his entire school career. Jim liked Derrick so much that he offered to share his locker with him. I came in from lunch recess one day to find all my stuff sitting outside the locker with all of Derrick's stuff in it's place.

The first person to come up to me while I was trying to gather up my stuff was Bart. Great, Just what I need. I was sure he was going to get a big kick out of this.

Then he surprised me. He asked what happened. He wasn't gloating or anything. he seemed genuinely concerned. I told him that Jim had asked Derrick to share his locker, which in fact was MY locker. He said that he had had the unfortunate luck to be Derrick's locker mate. If I wanted to move in, I could. So I did.

Two enemies became friends because they now had a common enemy. Derrick "borrowed" things and Bart wasn't happy about it. Jim threw me out, I wasn't happy. We plotted our revenge.

Since I knew the combination, their locker was stacked at least once a week. We often picked trash up from the playground and deposited it in the locker. Walnuts from the tree at the schoolyard boundary found their way into the locker. One would watch while the other wreaked vengeance. We kept this up all year. Jim had no clue as to where I had moved my stuff. We would get together and laugh our heads off. This brought us closer than either of had been with Jeb. Jeb was still our friend, but now we were best friends.

We've kept our friendship all throughout High School & beyond. He was instrumental in getting me into church (but that is another story for another day). Here is a picture of us from last Sunday.

I'm on the left and Bart is on the right. This is why you don't see many pictures of me on my blog. I'm not very photogenic.

Tuesday, September 28, 2010

An Old Movie

Yesterday, I was watching a VHS movie (Gasp! You mean you can still watch those?) with "The Boy". I love picking up movies at yard sales for 50 cents. This one was Disney's "Honey, I Blew Up The Kid." The third & final installment in the"Honey, I Shrunk The Kids" trilogy (I now have all three).

Before the movie started, there were some previews. One of the previews announced that it was coming in Spring of 1992.

When "The Boy" heard that, he exclaimed, "Man, This must be an old movie!"

I guess when you are nine, 1992 was a long time ago. When you are almost 47, not so much.

Saturday, September 25, 2010

Everything Is Going To Touch Screens

We use touch screens at work to record our time. Many phones have gone to touch screens. The polls in our city have touch screens.Some people LOVE them. other people, not so much.

Celebrity Pictures - Touch Screen Haters Club

Edward Scisorhands, Freddie Kruger & Wolverine think they are difficult to use. They have a point.

Friday, September 24, 2010

Flashback Friday # 106

Graduation from Basics

Hi. It's good to see you again (or for the first time, if that may be the case).

Today's post cover an exciting time in my brother's life. We got a letter from him in which he gave us the graduation date of his basic training exercises at Fort Leonard Wood. As the time approached, we packed up the car and made the 10 hour drive to Missouri. I had never been to Missouri before. The only states I had ever been to were Kentucky, Tennessee, Georgia & Florida. I would get to go to Indiana, Illinois & Missouri on this trip.

When we got to Missouri, we got us a motel room and made our way onto the army base. I had never seen so many real tanks & cannons before in my life. These were all decommissioned, and set around the base like so much landscaping, but to a young teen, they were simply awesome.

We didn't get to see Gattabout before the commencement exercise. Since the forecast called for rain, they were held inside. We got to sit in the nosebleed section of the risers.

Each platoon marched in lead by their drill instructor. We scanned each soldier in each line to see if we could see which one was him. Finally, we spotted him, or were relatively certain it was him.

At the end, we finally got to see him. His long red hair had been close cropped.His wire framed glasses were replaced with black framed, "Clark Kent" specials. His military ID was even funnier. It was taken immediately after he was shorn. He looked completely bald in the picture. If we didn't know him by face only, we would have missed him.

He gave me the medal the was awarded on the rifle & grenade range. It's the one in the middle with the bars hanging from it that say "RIFLE" and "GRENADE". (He gave me all the others pictured here, but at different times)

He then treated us to lunch. All the family members who came for graduation were invited to dine in the mess hall. As you walked down the line, you had to specifically say the individual food item you wanted, or it wasn't put on your tray (IE: Meat. Potatoes. Gravy. Peas. Bread. etc.). I discovered that the kool-aid the served there was really, really sweet. Maybe that's what it tasted like if you followed the mixing directions. We had a scoop in the sugar canister, and Mom always told us just to put one scoop in.

As we were eating, Gattabout dropped a bombshell us. He told us of his intentions after basics. He was planning to go to jump school to become a paratrooper. "Jump out of a perfectly good plane?" exclaimed Mom, "Are you nuts?" He said that of the options available to him, this had the most potential. The one drawback was you had to be a high school graduate, or completed your GED to finish jump school. He told Mom that he was going back to school and getting his GED. She absolutely beamed.

That short period of time that he had been gone had made him grow up a lot. Who knew, perhaps the Army could make something good out of him?

Tuesday, September 21, 2010

The Good Looking Brother

The other day at our local "Eat-til-you-explode" buffet, we sat in the section that was being manned by my brother's favorite server. He probably has frequent diner points at this particular resturant. When you server knows you by name, only because you eat there, not because they know you outside of work, you eat there alot.

She made the connection, by talking to my wife, that I was my brother's brother. I, in jest, replied "I'm the good looking one". She thought for a moment, and agreed.

I couldn't let this go by. Immediatly I whipped out my phone and sent a text to my brother. People make fun of the way I text. I am a text affictionado compared to my brother. To be nice to him, and so he would understand what I was writing, I spelled everything out AND used proper puncuation (shocking, isn't it?). This is what I sent him: I have it on good authotity that I am the good looking brother. Your favorite waitress at your favorite resturant told me so. Nyah nyah na nyah na. :-)>

His reply: She drinks a lot.

Friday, September 17, 2010

Flashback Friday # 105

And Now For Something Completely Different

Cheerio mates. Sit a bit and we'll peek back at the time where I first found the dry, twisted wit on the telly known as British comedy.

Last week I wrote of my acquisition of a black & white TV for my bedroom. This TV could tune in the PBS station from Columbus (WOSU), while the set in the living room couldn't. It was on this set that I watched my first TV show from Great Britain, and subsequently had my sense of humor warped a few more degrees.

It was Justa Crook who first mentioned them to me. He asked "You can get WOSU, can't you?" I said I could. "Have you ever watched Monty Python's Flying Circus before?" , he asked . I told him that I hadn't. "You'll really like it.", he said. I had seen the listing in the TV Guide, but I had thought nothing about it because I thought it had something to do with aerial stunt flying, or something. Boy, was I wrong. There was nobody named Monty Python on the show. It had nothing to do with flying. It had nothing to do with a circus.

This was some of the zaniest, most unusual humor that I had ever seen. I was spellbound. I even set my cassette recorder (you remember cassettes, don't you?) next to the TV and recorded the programs to listen to them over & over. Some of them I listened to so many time, I could quote them verbatim (I can still quote some of them 30 some years later). Here are a few of my favorite sketches

Monty Python wasn't the only British TV show that WOSU offered. I also watched Ripping Yarns, Dave Allen at Large, Fawlty Towers, The Goodies and a host of others.

One evening, I was watching when I heard the stairs creak. Mom was venturing up the stairs to see what I was laughing about. She watched for about five minutes, and said "I don't see what's so funny about that. It looks stupid to me."With that, she plodded back down the stairs.

I eventually recorded very nearly every episode that WOSU aired. I later found two record albums containing the skits that I had heard and loved(You remember record albums, don't you?). One was straight from the TV broadcasts. The other was live from Lincoln Center. It was with the Lincoln Center album that I realized just how far the chaps had gone. A word of advice to any who wish to see more, stick with the old stuff that the BBC aired. Otherwise, you might be just as shocked as I was . "Right!I'm Warnin' Ya!"