Friday, March 30, 2007

Saturday Photo Hunt - Water

I wish I could find my portfolio from my years as a freelancer, because I have a great shot for today. Instead, another option. ANYONE who has trraveled I-95 near Gaffney, SC since 1981 knows this landmark. It's South Carolina's way of telling the world they produce more peaches than neighbor Georgia, the Peach State. Of course in Georgia we can now qualify as the yellow pollen state.

Friday Feast #4

Appetizer - What are you proud of?
Easy One, Amy, my wife.

Soup - What is the best thing you ever won as a prize?
Two tickets to game 2 of the 1980 World Series, I was 9 years old and it was awesome! (The Phillies won the series in 6 games)

Salad - Name something you do that is a waste of time.
Watch TV.

Dinner - In what year of your life did you change the most?
Currently my senior year of high school, but this will change when we go to China to get our daughter, hopefully next year.

Dessert - Where is a place you consider to be very tranquil?
The top of the line while parasailing.

Thursday, March 29, 2007

Friday Flashback - Bands so good they named them twice!

For whatever reason, Youtube would not post a video of "All Cried Out" by Lisa Lisa and Cult Jam, perhaps because she sounds like Rosie Perez? Still, something about her, perhaps the short-cute-cleavage thing in her videos.... so anyway, this week we have bands that needed to be reminded what to call themselves so badly they named themselves the same thing twice!

Mr. Mister - Broken Wings

Duran Duran - New Moon on Monday

Talk Talk - It's My LIfe

Wednesday, March 28, 2007

Thursday Thirteen - Common Cars

table cellspacing="0" align="center" border="1">
Thirteen Things about Michael

Thirteen attainable automobiles I would like to own.

1. Late 60's Ford Mustang Convertible

2. 2007 Ford Mustang Convertible

3. A Mini-cooper (contemporary model) w/racing stripes

4. Chevy Avalanche

5. Humvee (original model)

6. 2007 Jeep Wrangler (new 4-door model)

7. Jeep Commander (the Cherokee meets the Hummer)

8. 2009 Chevy Camaro (it's going retro)

9. Late 60's Pontiac GTO convertible

10. Pontiac Solstice

11. Audi RS6

12. Plymouth Roadster

13. Chrysler Crossfire

Links to other Thursday Thirteens!
1. (leave your link in comments, I’ll add you here!)

Wordless Wednesday - Debbie Gibson

A pair of photos of a longtime favorite artist. I met Deborah in 1997 at a convention and shot her performing at a concert in Tampa in July 1998. Her management used two of the photos in a fanzine.

Tuesday, March 27, 2007

Good God, Why?!?!

So I noticed an article on the Atlanta-Journal-Constitution website mentioning the Atlanta Falcons will play the Indianapolis Colts on Thanksgiving night. So the curiousity hit, football...... I wonder about the UCF schedule this year. A quick check at and I found it.

UCF is proud that this Fall we aill open our on-campus stadium. For the life of UCF, we have played our home football games at the Citrus Bowl in downtown Orlando, which is about 20 miles from the campus. So, we are happy as this will make it a lot more likely for people, especially students, to come out for games. (of course, being on campus there will not be beer sold in the stadium as there was at the municipality-owned Citrus Bowl).

So regarding this year's schedule. We are opening on the road against a decent ACC team.

Our off-week is the SECOND WEEK OF THE SEASON!

Our home-opener, which will be NATIONALLY TELEVISED, is against TEXAS!

Why God? Why?
(the rest of the schedule follows, my guess is something like a 4-8 season)

2007-2008 SCHEDULE

Date Opponent / Event
09/01/07 at North Carolina State
09/15/07 vs. Texas TV
09/22/07 vs. Memphis *
09/29/07 vs. Louisiana-Lafayette
10/06/07 at East Carolina *
10/13/07 at USF
10/20/07 vs. Tulsa *
10/28/07 at Southern Miss * TV
11/03/07 vs. Marshall *
11/10/07 at UAB *
11/17/07 at SMU *
11/24/07 vs. UTEP *

Monday, March 26, 2007

Ten on Tuesday #3

Ten Movie Characters I love.....

1. Mark "Hard Harry" Hunter - Christian Slater in "Pump Up The Volume"

2. Joe Fox - Tom Hanks in "You've got Mail"

3. Congressman David Dilbeck - Burt Reynolds in "Striptease"

4. Maximus Dessimus Meridius - Russell Crowe in "Gladiator"

5. Ben Gates - Nichoals Cage in "National Treasure"

6. Jeff Spicolli - Sean Penn in "Fast Times at Ridgemont High"

7. John 'Bluto' Blutarsky - John Belushi in "Animal House"

8. Jake Blues - John Belushi in "The Blues Brothers"

9. Sheriff Bart - Cleavon Little in "Blazing Saddles"

10. Spike - Rhys Ifans in "Notting Hill"

A Fat Rant.

Sunday, March 25, 2007

Tribute to a lost friend

About 10 years ago, just after buying his first house, my brother Peter had our mom visit, and she took him out to get a pet. He adopted a pair of cats, brothers from different litters, named Bagheera and Baloo, from characters in The Jungle Book. Peter tried renaming them, Random and Pixel (he's a computer guy) but he eventually gave up. When Peter moved in with us last year he brought the boys with him and there was a bit of tension as our cats Samson and Delilah had some issues with these bigger, clawed cats living in THEIR home. They adjusted eventually and the only issue became Peter's cats using the doggie door to come and go as they pleased, which upset Lucy (our Basset Hound) that cats were crossing through her kitchen and escaping over the baby gates that keep her downstairs.

For about three weeks now, Baloo has not been well. He had lost a great deal of weight and pretty much laid around all day. We encouraged Peter to take him to the vet, but his time and desire were lacking. We watched as the poor guy got thinner and weaker, though he was eating and drinking. Today it got to the point where I picked him up off the floor in the hallway to take him to Peter's bed and he didn't have the strength to stand up. I told Peter I didn't think he had more than a day and a half left. Around 9pm I went to check on him and he was lying on the bed again with no strength to stand. At 11pm I was about to go to bed and I looked in to find he was not on the bed. I found him on the floor next to the bed where he had died.

I struggled with how to handle this. Peter was out for the night, and I pondered wether to leave him for Peter or to tend to him, and then what to do with the body if I did do anything. I opted to get dressed and find a place to bury him as I thought it cruel and insensitive to place him in the trash to be tossed in a truck and carted to a landfill, so at 11:15 at night I went to a spot near some trees on our property and took care of things.

I came back inside and sent Peter a text message with the news. About 5 minutes later Peter arrived home. He told me he expected he would have to take care of things when he got home tonight. He did not thank me, and he did not express any feelings. My emotions got the best of me (as they often can) such that I called Amy to tell her and after stating the basic news I could not speak any more. I worked to compose myself and called her back, afterwards I went and spoke to Peter again. He did wipe his eyes briefly but only said he had been expecting this when I asked him if he was okay.

It leaves me to wonder why we have to endure emotional distress over animals. Granted they are like family, but I certainly wish sometimes I could control my emotions, as now over an hour later, tears roll down my face as I type this. It's been a rough few months as in late December we lost Jasmine, and in January we lost Rascal. Jasmine and Rascal were a pair of cats I adopted while in college and that I left with my mother when I moved out since they were as much hers as mine. I talked to her today and she had received a call from her brother Ray today too. He had called her in tears because his cat had died in the past couple of days as well. Below is a pic of Jasmine (the calico) and Rascal I found among my photos.

Friday, March 23, 2007

To My Health!

This afternoon between work and the gym I received a call from my doctor with some results from my 3 month bloodwork. Here's the great news....!

Total Cholesterol - down from 448 in December to 225 currently.

Total Triglycerides - down from 2230 in December to 499 currently.

and the big one for diabetics...

A1C - the three month reflection of average blood sugar, down from 10.7 to 7.1! The American Diabetes Association currently recommends a level below 7.0 so you can see what the past three months of my new meds, taken appropriately, coupled with better diet and exercise had produced!

Friday Feast #2

Who is your favorite news anchor/reporter? Why?
Chuck Roberts of CNN Headline News. I've been watching him for twenty years, so the stability is comforting.

Name 3 foods that are currently in your freezer.
Tyson Buffalo Chicken Tenders, TGIFriday's Potato Skin Appetizers, Ben & Jerry's Black & Tan Ice Cream

If you were to have the opportunity to name a new town or city, what would you call it?
Rosieland! (this is a reference to a classic episode of M*A*S*H. (they remembered that "Canada" was already taken).

Main Course
What will most likely be the next book you read?
Eesh, I don't really know, perhaps Son of a Witch, the sequel to Wicked.

What's the first thing you notice about the opposite gender?
How little or much they are wearing, in relation to whether or not they should be wearing that little.

Thursday, March 22, 2007

Friday Flashback - Great Anthem Rock

Today I had no planned theme, so I am simply showcasing three great power ballads, Bon JOvi, Bryan Adams (yes Canada has apologized for him) and Damn Yankees.

Bryan Adams - Heaven

Bon Jovi - Living in Sin

Damn Yankees - High Enough

So Tired

The title says it all. The odd thing is I feel I am getting enough sleep. Granted I could get more, but I am bordering on exhausted and it is having a bad affect on my mood. Today was just 7 hours at work and it was not good. It seems as everything that happened today was either about me, my fault, or in some other way a poor reflection of me. Once this starts for a day, there is no bouncing back the same day and it gets pretty hard to look forward to tomorrow.

Wednesday, March 21, 2007

Trivia Results

Granted, the Wednesday game we play is pretty easy, and with 15-20 teams playing, you pretty much have to get every question including the bonus questions i norder to place. Tonight we took 1st place with 130 out of a possible 136 points. We missed one question we bid 2 points on, and one question we bid 4 points on.

The final bonus - Musical Cities - What US City is known as the "live music capital of the world?"

The two we missed - TV CHaracters - What is the name of the character on CSI: Las Vegas who was buried alive in the season 5 finale - directed by Quentin Tarrentino?

and Virgin Islands - From what nation did the US acquire the Virgin Islands?

and the one we totally guessed at and got right - Rap - in the song the Humpty Dance, what restaurants restroom did the singer claim to have gotten bizzy in?

Tuesday Night Trivia

Met with the Bambinos and formed our new team, Bambinbos Need a Refill. We had a good run, leading the entire way in a three way tie at one point. We pulled ahead in the late second round and never looked back. $40 house cash for next week. 100 tournament points for week one of the twevle week program to the invitational. Some of the questions.

Military Operations - What country was involved in the US military op titled "Eagle Claw?" (given hint, 1980)

Name the six smallest (by area) independent states in Europe. (We got 3 correct and one wrong, netting 8 points in this, the final bonus).

What author penned the 1981 memoir, "Heart of a woman?"

What two properties/spaces border Park Place on a standard Monopoly board?

What two films did Steven Spielberg win Oscars for Best Director?

UPDATE : Thursday Night - the answers...

Military OPerations - Iran - this was the failed attempt to rescue the American hostages.

Euro Geography - Lichtenstein, Andorra, San Marino, The Vatican (Vatrican City), Monaco, and Andora.

Authors - Maya Angelou

Monopoly - Luxury Tax, and Chance

Directors - Schindler's List, and Saving Private Ryan

Tuesday, March 20, 2007

Wordless Wednesday - Bradford Pears

It's March in Atlanta, the Dogwoods will bloom soon, but first we get the Bradford Pear Trees. They explode in white blossoms and shed them about 4 weeks later in a snow-like cascade of petals. They also kinda stink when they first bloom, but they are mighty pretty!

Sunday, March 18, 2007

Basset Hounds are indeed hunting dogs

Amy and I went to Sam's Club Saturday afternoon (as previoulsy reported) and we had a few minutes to unpack the perishibles and let Lucy out of her kennel before we had to leave for the dinner/fundraiser we attended. While surfing channels we heard Lucy outside doing something to the drainspout. Amy went to investigate and came back reporting that Lucy was chasing a bug.

The problem is it continued and she started barking. Amy went out again and came back telling me there is something IN the drainspout, she had heard it. So I go to investigate. I didn't hear anything, but I tapped and rattled the drainspot and thought I heard leaves or something shift. I look down and out flies a CHIPMUNK! It has a little altitude coming out the spout hits the ground and tears across the backyard to the concrete retaining wall and jumps perfectly into one of the drainage holes and disappears. Lucy is in hot pursuit and is VERY mad that she could not catch this cute little guy.

As I understand, beagles and foxhounds chase fox. Bassets were bred to sniff out and hunt small game like rabbits and squirrels so Yeah for Lucy as she has now successfully chased a chipmunk and cornered an opossum in our backyard. She's also skilled at birds, squirrels and cats. I'm glad we're not in Florida because the geckos would make her never shut up.

Saturday, March 17, 2007

Saturday Mid-day

It's about 2pm and I am refreshed after a shower. I spent about an hour this afternoon bonding with David, my next door neighbor as we worked together to cut up a tree that fell between our houses yesterday. I should have taken pics, before, during, after, but oh well. It was a 45-50ft tall red oak, about 15 inches in diamete at the base and the wind just blew it over right between the houses yesterday while I was home sick and Dave was at work.

We used my boss' chainsaw and cut it into segments about 4-6 feet long to get them off the hill and down to the driveway, flipping them end over end like caber toss poles. We'll cut them down more so Dave can chop them for firewood later becasuse the chain has dulled from this task.

So shower done, going to run some errands with Amy, Sam's Club and a fabric store and Chick-fil-a for more tea for today and tomorrow. Perhaps we'll watch Gone With The Wind, which I got on DVD yesterday.

Saturday Photohunt #2 - Drink

A little something different. The first shot in my essay is from Spring, 1999. I was on my way home to get ready for a Jimmy Buffett concert when I found this "spot news" outside my subdivision. I missed the pre-concert tailgate as I was at the Orlando Sentinel where they processed my film and bought and published this photo, my first (And only) real newspaper shot!

At one of his hangouts, my brother's face through his glass of beer.

Same night, our table during trivia, the Jack & Coke special.....

Friday, March 16, 2007

Drama, Drama, Drama

So it's been a pretty interesting day. I have been home because with strep throat I can not work. Around 11:00am today I was in the TV room with Amy and we heard a thump of an odd nature. We got up to investigate and found a 45-50ft tall red oak that stood on the hill behind our house had fallen over. It could have gone onto/into our house or across the neighbors fence and possibly struck their house. As fortune held, it landed between our houses, with the upper parts striking the top of the neighbor's driveway and slightly damaging their basketball goal.

I checked the websites for the county school district and found contact info for both David and Holly as they are both teachers in two separate high schools. I left a voice male for him and reached her between classes to tell them and reassure them all was well. In the meantime I called a tree service I know and got an estimate for the cleanup and removal. When they came out they said it would be $350. Figuring the neighbors wouldn't feel great about the unexpected expense, or shared but I think the tree was on their property.

I took some time and cleaned the debris from their driveway and also called my boss to meet him and borrow his chainsaw. When I got back I made a few initial cuts but stopped when my wife called me and asked me to halt because she was trying to take her nap (she works overnight). So at this time I am inside watching season 5 of 24 and the phone rang a few minutes ago.

The call was from a guy at Chick-fil-a corporate who I interviewed with on Wednesday about my desire to become an owner/operator. His call today was to wrap up from Wednesday and let me know that at this time and in the foreseeable future, I will not be someone capable of reaching the top 2 choices for any new store assignment. What this boils down to is the fact that I have been refused as a candidate for becoming an operator and unless I want to continue in a menial hourly management job with no sick time and only a week of vacation each year, it is time to find a new job.

Friday Feast #1

Appetizer : Name two things that made you smile this week. The bradford pair trees went into bloom, exploding in beautiful white flowers that will look like snow when they fall in a few weeks. We got our last needed documents from the U.S. Department of State and have now sent everything we need to the Chinese Consulates for approval in our adoption quest (

Soup: Don't you hate it when ________. you're running late and the person ahead of you on a two-lane 45mph limit road will only go between 37-42 and the average driver on that road does 55?

Salad: When you can't go to sleep, what is your personal remedy to help yourself drift into Lullabyland? I stay up as late as I can so that when I lay down I am out in seconds. Also, I usually have the radio or some CDs on, but recently it seems a lot of them are skipping in the player, perhaps they were in my wife's car?

Main Course: What is something about which you've always wondered but have not yet found a good answer? At work, I am a fast food restaurant manager, people orderwith extra words, as in "I want a sausage in a biscuit" rather than saying "I want a sausage biscuit." Or, "I want a 4 pack of chicken and strips" when the item is called chicken strips.

Dessert: What is your favorite pasta dish? Can I just say all of them? Lasagne, Spaghetti, Manicotti, Chicken Parmesean, Veal Parmesean, Seafood Alfredo, Chicken Alfredo, Pasta Prima vera, Ravioli, hungry yet?

Thursday, March 15, 2007

A great quote

Amy and I watched and enjoyed the Inside the Actors Studio episode with Chris Rock this week, and he had this to say...

"A sport without black people isn't a sport. It's just a game."

Friday Flashback - Actors Who Thought They Could Sing

Welcome back boys and girls. As promised last week, the Friday Flashback to 80's music videos spotlights actors who tried to cross over to the music biz and pretty much failed miserably. I will grant an exception to Rick Springfield, but I did find what I consider his cheesiest video since the deli scene in General Hospital. And have [atience with the Bruce Willis video from his "Return of Bruno" days, it takes almost to 1 minute 50 before he starts to sing.

On a side note, my thanks to my beloved for making a stop at the Friday Flashback worth a bonus point on her contest, and to Cyndi, who always stops by on Friday, yes, the answer to my questiopn regarding Sam Jackson and Star Wars is that his light saber was the first good guy saber not to be blue or green, he got purple for his bad self. The bad guys sabers all were red.

Bruce Willis aka Bruno with "Respect Yourself" - 1987

Don Johnson with "Heartbeat" (note the passionate facial expressions)

Rick Springfield - Human Touch

Eddie Murphy "Party All the Time"

Icky Part Four and Trivia Part 2

I tried going to work today and gave up after about an hour and a half. I called the doctor on the way home and was able to get an appointment at 11:20 this morning. When the nurse came in to check vitals she took a swab from my throat and when the doctor came in about 10 minutes later she said I was very positive on the test for strep. SO I am home with antibiotics and a note from work for tomorrow through Sunday. I can return on Monday. I don't mind the weekend off, but I will have worked all of about 22 hours this week which does not bode well for finances.

We did go out to play trivia last night at our regular Wednesday venue Winston's. We were joined at the end of round one by Amy's coworker Elizabeth and her friend John. We had a good time socializing while fighting to remain competitive in a field of 18 teams.

We hung in pretty well, missing two opportunities by underbetting that Honolulu is on Oahu, we bet our 2pt instead of 8, and we missed the 8 pointer on Movie quotes which was in which Dirty Harry film did Clint Eastwood first say, "Go ahead, make my day." We guessed Magnum Force because we knew it was not Dirty Harry. The answer was Sudden Impact.

We did, however, make 2nd place for the night thanks to the final bonus question on Actors. I knew it immediately because I had heard it at another venue sometime in the past year. The question is, appearing in 44 films in the 1990's, what actor (non-gender-specific term) wppeared in more films than any other in that decade. The answer my friends, Samuel L Jackson, and those films are....

# Deep Blue Sea (1999) .... Russell Franklin
# Star Wars: Episode I - The Phantom Menace (1999) .... Mace Windu
... aka Star Wars I: The Phantom Menace (USA: video box title)
... aka The Phantom Menace (USA: short title)
# Our Friend, Martin (1999) (V) (voice) .... Turner
# Violon rouge, Le (1998) .... Charles Morritz (Montréal)
... aka The Red Violin (Canada: English title) (USA)
... aka Violino rosso, Il (Italy)
# The Negotiator (1998) .... Lt. Danny Roman
... aka Verhandlungssache (Germany)
# Out of Sight (1998) (uncredited) .... Hejira Henry
# Sphere (1998) .... Dr. Harry Adams
# Jackie Brown (1997) .... Ordell Robbie
# Eve's Bayou (1997) .... Louis Batiste
# One Eight Seven (1997) .... Trevor Garfield
# The Long Kiss Goodnight (1996) .... Mitch Henessey
# A Time to Kill (1996) .... Carl Lee Hailey
# Trees Lounge (1996) .... Wendell
# The Great White Hype (1996) .... Rev. Fred Sultan
# Sydney (1996) .... Jimmy
... aka Hard Eight (USA: new title)
# Fluke (1995) (voice) .... Rumbo
# Die Hard: With a Vengeance (1995) .... Zeus Carver
... aka Die Hard 3
# Kiss of Death (1995/I) .... Calvin Hart
# Losing Isaiah (1995) .... Kadar Lewis
# The Search for One-eye Jimmy (1994) .... Col. Ron
# The New Age (1994) .... Dale Deveaux
# Pulp Fiction (1994) .... Jules Winnfield
# Hail Caesar (1994) .... Mailman
# Fresh (1994) .... Sam
# True Romance (1993) .... Big Don
# Jurassic Park (1993) .... Ray Arnold
# Menace II Society (1993) .... Tat Lawson
# Amos & Andrew (1993) .... Andrew Sterling
# Loaded Weapon 1 (1993) .... Sgt. Wes Luger
... aka National Lampoon's Loaded Weapon 1 (USA: complete title)
# Fathers & Sons (1992) .... Marshall
# Patriot Games (1992) .... Lt. Cmdr. Robby Jackson
# White Sands (1992) (as Sam Jackson) .... Greg Meeker
# Juice (1992) .... Trip
... aka Angel Town 2 (Europe: English title: video catalogue title)
# Jumpin' at the Boneyard (1992) .... Mr. Simpson
# Strictly Business (1991) (as Sam Jackson) .... Monroe
# Johnny Suede (1991) .... B-Bop
# Jungle Fever (1991) .... Gator Purify
# The Return of Superfly (1990) (as Sam Jackson) .... Nate Cabot
# Goodfellas (1990) .... Stacks Edwards
# The Exorcist III (1990) .... Dream blind man
# Mo' Better Blues (1990) .... Madlock
# Betsy's Wedding (1990) .... Taxi Dispatcher (Mickey)
# A Shock to the System (1990) .... Ulysses (three-card monte game)

and I've seen him in 17 of these. Also, after deleting the IMDB TV appearances, I count 43 titles here.

Other Sammy Jackson trivia - what distinct exception was granted to him regarding his character in the Star Wars movies (approved by George Lucas himself)?

Thursday Thirteen Number Who Knows?

Thirteen Things about Michael - Lover of Amy

Favorite Movie Series, Sequels or Associated Follow-up Films

1. Lethal Weapon, 2, 3, & 4

2. Star Wars Episodes 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, & 6

3. Raiders of the Lost Ark, Indiana Jones and the Temple of Doom, Indiana Jones and the Last Crusade

4. Lord of the Rings Fellowship of the Ring, Two Towers, Return of the King

5. The Godfather, Godfather 2, Godfather 3

6. Major League, Major League 2 (NOT Major League 3)

7. Cannonball Run, Cannonball Run 2

8. Clerks, Clerks 2, Jay and Silent Bob Strike Back

9. Back to the Future 1, 2, & 3

10. Kiss The Girls, Along Came a Spider

11. Oceans Eleven, Oceans Twelve

12. Spiderman, Spiderman 2 (we'll see about #3)

13. Pirates of the Caribbean : Curse of the Black Pearl, Dead Man's Chest (looking forward to number 3)

Links to other Thursday Thirteens!
1. (leave your link in comments, I’ll add you here!)

Get the Thursday Thirteen code here!

The purpose of the meme is to get to know everyone who participates a little bit better every Thursday. Visiting fellow Thirteeners is encouraged! If you participate, leave the link to your Thirteen in others comments. It’s easy, and fun! Be sure to update your Thirteen with links that are left for you, as well! I will link to everyone who participates and leaves a link to their 13 things. Trackbacks, pings, comment links accepted!

Tuesday, March 13, 2007

My own version of 300 - Trivia Style

Tonight Amy had to work, and I had told our friends the Houghs (team name The Bambinos)that I would come play as part of their team at trivia. I got there as the rules were being read, scanned the room for the Houghs and didn't see them so I grabbed the answer sheets and sat down to start, assuming they were running late (carrying an infant can cause that to happen).

They never showed, but I started off perfect through round one so I continued to play on my own. Our dreaded rivel "The Old Peaople" (actual team name) were tied with me through round 2 and into round three when I missed the question "How many games does a major league baseball team play in the regular season?"

The round 3 bonus cost me 5 points too because I got one answer right and two wrong regarding "Name the top three best-selling store-bought brands of ice cream in the United States."

So I persevered, down about 7 points, but still in second place out of 8 teams. I talked to the Old People and they said they would be very embarassed if I won as a solo player as they had 8 people on their team. I got 2 of the 4 answers right in round four, and then the final question. Before the question was asked, the scoreboard, Old People 78, Bambinos 74, and some others close behind in the 60's and one 70.

The final bonus question - 25 possible points, wrong answers cost you 5 points, correct answers earn you 5 points. "Name the 5 artists being inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame this year." I knew 2 right off, and remembered a third. Knowing I would not remember any more, I turned in my 3 good answers to secure my 15 points. The Old People got two correct and guessed at no more. Do the math now, everybody...

Old People - 78 + 10 = 88

Bambinos (me all by my lonesome) - 74 + 15 = 89

Victory by ONE POINT over a force 8 times my size! (and $40 house cash for next week!)

Wordless Wednesday - Christian Musicians

This week I found a box with a lot of film I shot at Atlantafest, the 4 day (now 3 day) festival held each June at Six Flags over Georgia. I was working for Family Christian Stores at the time and we had the music concession and I had my camera! (and that's me in the posed shots, the guy with the goatee)



Bebo Norman


Jars of Clay

Jars of Clay Backstage

Michael W. Smith

Monday, March 12, 2007

10 on Tuesday #2 - Favorite Albums of All Time

Not in any order, here are my Top 10.

Boston - Boston - This was an awesome rock band in the 70's. They made a great comeback in 1986 with the long-awaited third album, called Third Stage, but the first was the best.

Jimmy Buffett - Feeding Frenzy Jimmy has done more live albums than anyone I know, but this was a favorite because it incorporates the elements of a greatest hits project, but includes the song In the City, and his solution for world peace through Victoria's Secret Catalogs!

Casting Crowns - Casting Crowns, probably my favorite Christian band of all time, I got to hear them about a month before this, their first CD, was released and I knew it would sell itself. I started playing it in my store and people would ask who it is, they'd buy a copy and come back a day later to buy five more copies to give to friends.

Debbie Gibson - Out of the Blue - Deb is probably my all time favorite female pop singer and this was the album that started it all for her back in 1986.

Newsboys - Shine, The Hits It's hard not to have a few Greatest Hits CDs on the list because well, they tend to have all the best. This one also includes a mega-mix of a bunch of their hits on one track.

Third Day - Offerings - A Worship Album Atlanta's OTHER great Christian band. This CD has a great worship vibe and four of my favorite tracks, Love Song, Praise Song, Thief, and Consuming Fire.

Von RA - Panes This is an awesome independent band from Orlando. I got to know them well as a photographer back in the late 90's. They signed to Electra and had one album that did not catch on, but this Indy disc was great for acoustic driven rock with a MAtchbox 20/Creed feel.

Amy Grant - The Collection Having all the earlier stuff, this is a great CD, especially with songs like El Shaddai, and Thy Word, inspired youth instead of pop candy.

Steven Curtis Chapman - Declaration This was the first SCC disc I really got into and it had som many great songs related to the missionarys lost in Ecuador in the 1950's, great stories of sacrifice and forgiveness.

Garth Brooks - Double Live At one point I hated Garth for being a greedy and arrogant jerk wanting a cut on the money exchanged selling used CDs. The music is great though and his policy of touring with ALL seats being $20 won me back.

The Mystery of the Leaking Tree

TN friend, and videographer extraoardinaire Steven Russell has a problem. He has a tree in his front yard that is "leaking." Have you ever heard of such a thing? Go to to see video he has produced proving his point. Apparently he is contacting an arborist. I recommended he send one of his kids shimmying up the tree and duct tape the thing!

Sunday, March 11, 2007

Sunday Lunch Date

So Amy and I had our Last Supper with Valfrey as they are preparing to leave their matrimonial aprtment for a life of living above Valerie's parents back among the cotton fields in Millington, TN.

We dined at Maggiano's on things like chicken and spinach manicotti, four-cheese ravioli, humongous portions of cheesecake and a baked apple/ice cream desert. We mainly talked about people from Union University, where Amy, Jeff, and Valerie attended college. I visited there once after Amy and I were married, so I mainly spent my time listening to their stories and trying to contribute when I could remember correctly the names of those I had actually met.

We will miss this pair of friends. If nothing else, we'll have another reason to travel to west Tennessee. It'll be to see Jeff and Val, and to see cotton fields. You can never see enough cotton fields.

Friday, March 09, 2007

Saturday Photo Hunt #2 - Architecture

This is the First Union building in Key West, FL, located just off of Mallory Square on Duval Street. It has always been one of my favorite brick designs.

Lead singer of Boston dead at 55

Click on the title of this post for the story. Brad Delp was found dead at his home today. He was 55.

Thursday, March 08, 2007

American Idol - What do you say?

I am a fan of this show. My wife got me to start watching it about 2 and a third seasons ago. We have been watching all this season, but tonight was about enough to make me stop til next year if then.

For one thing the girls, in particular the black girls, are going to win this thing. It's obvious that the style and personality with which they are performing will carry them all the way. The only guys with a chance are possibly Blake and Chris Sligh, but in the end it will be Lakisha and Melinda or Stephanie in the final two. There is no crime or conspiracy here, it is just that the deck is loaded against anyone else standing out this year. The talent lies with that one demographic.

Aside from that, my personal outrage is that Sundance Head was eliminated tonight, long before Sanjaya. Sundance has talent and personality and is appealing despite being a big guy. Sanjaya has little talent compared to the remaining 5 guys and should have been eliminated about 2 or 3 weeks ago. My boss believes he has made it this far because of young people, kids and teens voting and he appeals to them because of his smile. He has (in my opinion) a bit of a Michael Jackson softness and sweetness which also means I would not leave a child under 18 alone in a room with Sanjaya.

Simon Cowell said early on that Sundance had a voice that would carry him to the finals. Simon has also stated a number of times that this is supposed to be a singing competition, but the format in this part of the show makes it more of a popularity contest which explains why people like Antonella Barba and Sanjaya make it as far as they do.

It is a bit disturbing, but I am hopeful that Sundance will return to Memphis and someone there will offer him a record deal. Chris Daughtry was another Idol alumnus who was eliminated earlier than he should have been, and America has been proved wrong about him as his solo CD not only debuted at number 1 on the album charts, it dropped from number one and then reclaimed it this week.

I'll take bets on the final three, but right now I predict two of the three, if not all three will be Lakisha, Stephanie, and Melinda.

Friday Flashback - All By Myself

This week's Friday Flashback takes us back to the 80's to visit artists who got their start as frontmen of groups and went on to have successful solo careers (some more successful than others, but all quite respectable).

We have Peter Gabriel who started with Genesis before Phil Collins took over as lead vocalist. Gabriel recorded this version of "Come Talk To Me" in the 90's on the Secret World Tour - which has a great CD and DVD available, but the song was written and released in the 80's. Also, you'll recognize the female back-up singer as Paula Cole who had a hit solo CD in part thanks to being used on the Dawsons Creek TV show with her songs "I don't want to wait" and "Where have all the Cowboys Gone?"

We have Lionel Richie who was the heart of The Commodores before going solo. Though he had much bigger hits than "Running With the Night," I have always liked this video for the costuming and choreography.

We have Peter Cetera who will forever be the voice of Chicago He had many fewer hits as a solo artist, but this song was great thanks to the contributions by Amy Grant, who BTW looked very nice in this video as well.

We wrap it up with the guy with the biggest ego before Axl Rose came along, former frontman for Van Halen, Mr. David Lee Roth Granted, he was cocky and a bit raunchy as a solo act, but he did well in getting Steve Vai to play guitar on his albums and tours. He had a great sense of humor in his videos, and there is no one I can argue as being a better showman in the metal/rock genre. One word, CHARISMA.

Enjoy the videos, coming next week, actors who thought they could sing....

Peter Cetera with Amy Grant "Next Time I Fall"

Peter Gabriel "Come Talk To Me"

David Lee Roth "Yankee Rose"

Lionel Richie "Running with the Night"

Wednesday, March 07, 2007

Thursday 13 - Favorite Comic Strips

Thirteen Things about Michael

1. Calvin & Hobbes

2. Bloom County/Opus

3. Garfield

4. Zits

5. Luann

6. Foxtrot

7. Peanuts

8. Beetle Bailey

9. Kudzu

10. The Far Side

11. Ziggy

12. Fred Basset

13. Shoe

and a special link, this page has the official links to a few hundred comic strips.

Icky Part Three (in between One and Two)

I was running late for work today, especially worse because I was feeling icky. I actually got there and clocked in at 6:02am so I was not hasseled but I did have this happen... My radar detector (Christmas gift from my inlaws) made an unGodly noise that meant something other than I'm passing a drugstore or convenience store with automatic doors. It was the "you have a radar bouncing off you as you drive 65 in a 45 zone" noise.

I immediately braked and spotted two Roswell Police cars, one parked on my side of the street clocking me and another a bit up the road with someone pulled over. My heart skipped a beat and the parked car turned it's headlights on. I'm thinking I'm toast. I can only guess the officer recognized me, turned off his lights and let me go as I slowed down for the final 1/4 mile to work.

You see, we like cops at Chick-fil-a, I know probaly 1/3 of the overnight and day shift in Roswell as we feed them for free if they eat in the store in uniform with their weapons. I can only assume this is why I was at work 2 minutes late rather than 10 and without a citation!

Icky Part Two

I survived my shift remarkably well, working just over 9 hours before coming home. The congestion moderated and my voice held up pretty good. I got home and looked at Wordless Wednesdays for a bit and then went to nap before trivia. Having just woken up, I actually feel worse now than I did before the nap, so a date with Tylonel PM is defintely on the books for after trivia tonight.

Regarding trivia, those of you who said The Phillipenes were correct as that is where they speak Tagalog. A follow up from last night is this...

In major league baseball, what are the first names of the Niekro brothers who played as pitchers in the 70's and 80's?

Feeling Icky

Definitely under the weather today. Ugh, made it through the whole winter and now get sick. Stuffy head, cough, voice is going.... very bad for a restaurant manager. I left early yesterday to come home and rest, took about a 3 hour nap and boy if I could not sleep last night. It's 5am now and I am getting ready for work after less than 5 hours of sleep. Hope I can get out earlier than my ten scheduled hours today and nap again as we have trivia tonight with our team in the tournament to win $200 or $100 cash instead of gift certificates. From a previous game, anyone know what country they speak Tagalog?

Tuesday, March 06, 2007

Wordless Wednesday - Fun with Water

From my college days, I took the waterfall and creek shots while on a mission trip to the Cumberland Mountains of Tennessee. The wakeboard shots I took from on a skiboat. The boarders are Steve Soubasis and Hal Estes, two friends from campus ministry at the University of Central Florida, taken on a lake near Winter Park, FL.

Ten on Tuesday #2

Ten Things I'd like to learn how to do

1. Fly a helicopter.

2. Play guitar, piano/keyboards, saxophone, and drums proficiently.

3. Speak Spanish.

4. Speak Greek.

5. A cartwheel and a standing backflip.

6. Drive a boat.

7. Waterski.

8. Win consistently at poker.

9. Train my dog.

10. Program in html and do neat things on my blog.

Sunday, March 04, 2007

About mom

My mom had a thyroidectomy on Friday. She is seemingly fine now. It cane about because she had some growths detected and they biopsied those. Two of the three were benign and the third was inconclusive so they decided to take out the entire thyroid as a precaution. It's been a rough patch of months as she also had 2 of her cats die since December and she is in the middle of a wrongful termination lawsuit.

Sunday at home

The alarm rang at 8:15. This was roughly 7 hours after we went to bed having stayed up to watch movies together. Last night Amy and I saw RV and Flicka. Yes it was a night of family fare and we enjoyed both of them. I was surprised to discover the female leads in RV are Kristen Chenowith (broadway star and on TV's West Wing), Cheryl Hines from HBO's Curb Your Enthusiasm, and teen pop singer Jojo.

We turned off the alarm and returned to sleep for a but more. Amy woke me sometime around 9:30 and I began to prepare for church as we had about 5 or 6 to choose from to visit. We selected (or rather I selected) Hillside United Methodist in Woodstock. We had visited this church once before and we were turned off by a lack of friendliness. We decided to try again, this time arriving early enough to find seats in the traditional service. Last time we could not find seats nor could we find help in finding seats so we went to the other building for the contemporary service.

I enjoyed the traditional service as we sang standard hymns, said the Apostle's Creed and sang the gloria patri. The sermon focused on healing and curing, that they are two different things, and the scripture dealt with Christ's sending of the demons from the man to the herd of swine. Being the first Sunday of the month, Holy Communion was served and an opportunity was made available to receive an anointing of oil and a prayer for any healing you need. I took this opportunity as my mind is not straight for the service I am obliged in my occupation.

We left the church and found a Publix across the street so we stopped to get some subs for lunch and items for dinner tonight. Sirloin steak was on sale so it's steak and baked potatoes with asparagus tonight.

After lunch I took some time to clean our bedroom some and to install our new fax/copier/scanner/printer. I was able to successfully scan and deposit my paycheck into my account with USAA. This is a victory over having to mail them to San Antonio. it also means I have access to scan many of my old print photos for use on this blog.

We are now preparing to watch some tv together and perhaps play a game (Amy and I). Lucy is behaving pretty well today and it should be a good evening to end a good day.

Thursday, March 01, 2007

Friday Flashback - Musical Geography

A little musical geography as this week's selections feature bands named after cities in the USA. Now, Boston released DLB in 1978, but they had an awesome album called Third Stage in '87. It's just they never filmed any MTV-style videos. And of course we have Gloria Estefan with the Miami Sound Machine, and a favorite Chicago song and video, from Chicago 17, "Along Comes a Woman." Enjoy!