Thursday, July 31, 2008

Thursday Thirteen - Georgia

Thirteen Things about The State of Georgia!

1. In 1828 Auraria, near the city of Dahlongea, was the site of the first Gold Rush in America.

2. The popular theme park - Six Flags Over Georgia, was actually named for six flags that flew over Georgia. England, Spain, Liberty, Georgia, Confederate States of America, and the United States.

3. The locomotive engine popularly known as The General is housed in the Big Shanty Museum in Kennesaw. It was stolen in the Andrews Railroad Raid in 1862 and later depicted in The Great Locomotive Chase, a popular movie.

4. Wesleyan College in Macon was the first college in the world chartered to grant degrees to women

5. Known as the sweetest onion in the world, the Vidalia onion can only be grown in the fields around Vidalia and Glennville.

6. Cumberland Island National Seashore contains the ruins of Dungeness, the once magnificent Carnegie estate. In addition, wild horses graze among wind swept dunes.

7. On January 19, 1861, Georgia joined the Confederacy.

8. In Gainesville, the Chicken Capital of the World it is illegal to eat chicken with a fork.

9. Stone Mountain near Atlanta is one of the largest single masses of exposed granite in the world. The figures of Stonewall Jackson, Jefferson Davis, and Robert E. Lee make up the world's largest sculpture. It is located on the face of Stone Mountain. Additionally Robert E. Lee's horse, Traveler, is also carved at the same place.

10. The world's largest Infantry training center is located at Fort Benning.

11. Coca-Cola was invented in May 1886 by Dr. John S. Pemberton in Atlanta, Georgia. The name "Coca-Cola" was suggested by Dr. Pemberton's bookkeeper, Frank Robinson. He penned the name Coca-Cola in the flowing script that is famous today. Coca-Cola was first sold at a soda fountain in Jacob's Pharmacy in Atlanta by Willis Venable.

12. Georgia is often called the Empire State of the South and is also known as the Peach State and Cracker State.

13. Historic Saint Marys Georgia is the second oldest city in the nation.

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Wednesday, July 30, 2008

Best of both worlds

I watch professional wrestling.

Amy watches bad movies starring Freddie Prinze, Jr.

Freddie Prinze, Jr. has been hired to be a writer, a member of the "creative team" for the WWE.

Tuesday, July 29, 2008

Wordless Wednesday - Pathetic

News Flash

I took about 3 weeks off, but yesterday I started posting on my 1980's music video blog with a Metal Monday post yesterday and a Twofer Tuesday today. Tomorrow checkout Wednesday's Women to find the answer to one of the trivia questions in the post below. Thursday is Author's Choice. Friday is up to you guys! It's Request and Long-Distance Dedication day. Saturday is Soundtrack music and Sunday is for Soft Rock.

Come relive some great music videos, please comment on them if you like them or have memories associated with them or if you hate them and remember, Friday goes blank if I don't get requests!

See it all at

Monday, July 28, 2008

Hot, Weird, Fun

These are the words that best describe trivia tonight.


We play on Monday's at Johnny's New York Pizza. It's averaging in the 90's outside here in Atlanta and the centerpiece of this restaurant, literally right in the middle of the place is a pizza oven.


We had a fun set of questions, some of which I will share in a moment, but here's the deal. We were tied for first at the half and we were tied for first at the end of regulation. We got the final bonus right (thank you Ben Mobley), but were still in a tie. We had a tie-breaker question which we got right (thank you Erika Mobley). When I turned it in the host read our answer and said "sh*t." We had another tie. So another tie-breaker question which we were further from correct than the other team, so they won 1st place and we took second.

What was also weird was the use of a song during one of the questions. The host played Poison's "Unskinny Bop" which just HAPPENS to be the Metal Monday song over at another blog I run called Taking You Back which you can visit at


Sadly Amy could not make trivia tonight because she had to work. We did have a team reunion of sorts as Ben & Erika Mobley and Dave & Leslie McElhanon all attended. We used to try to have all three couples plus our friends the Mantooths who made up the four couples in our church small group. Erika contributed three answers and Ben hit the big one out of the park with the answer to the baseball question for the final bonus. Here is a sampling...

What was the name of the oldest Banks daughter on Fresh Prnce of Bell Aire? (Erika had this)

What American Army General was known for wearing two pearl-handled revolvers?

Russia is bordered by 14 different countries. What other country has 14 bordering neighbors?

What rap artist was absent when he won the Academy Award in 2003 for Best Song from a Feature Film? ( I got this one)

What female singer is the only person to ever have two songs from different movies nominated for the best song Oscar in the same year (in 1980)? (We missed this, but the irony/weirdness was that the answer to this question is my Wednesday's Woman this week over on ) So tune in on Wednesday over there to find the answer. Our guesses were Barbra Streisand or Dolly Parton. We went with Barbra and it was wrong.

The half-time bonus, which we got all 4 parts right, was in my arena to answer. Here's the question.... Sting the wrestler, Sting the singer, or Both.... these are the answers to match to the following 4 statements...
1. His real name is Steve Borden.
2. Was a teacher.
3. Has appeared on Mad TV.
4. Is the subject of a biography called Demolition Man.

The final bonus question. Thank you Ben for showing up to know this answer!
Besides John Smoltz, there is only one major league pitcher who has over 150 career saves and has only played for one team. Name him.

The first tie-breaker. How old was Jo in the beginning of the novel Little Women?

The second tie-breaker. When Disneyland opened in California, how much did a regular adult admission cost? The sad connection is that a single-day adult ticket to the parks in Orlando now costs over $70.

Sunday, July 27, 2008

High Drama in Philadelpha

Well, it was an exciting weekend for this Phillies fan. The Phils were hosting the Braves. The Braves have been struggling, and the Mets have been on a tear, so as the weekend began, the Phillies were one game behind the Mets in the NL East.

Friday night the Phils lost to the Braves in a bad way. I turned on the game in the 5th inning and the Braves were ahead 1-0 due to a McCann HR. In the top of the 9th, the Braves loaded the bases with no outs and McCann hit another homer, a grand slam. As the inning continued it got to be 8 or 9 to nothing. I lost track and stopped watching. BTW of the last 6 grand slams hit by the Braves, 5 of them were hit by McCann.

I had the weekend off, which meant I got to watch all 3 games. On Saturday I got home from poker to find the Braves had scored 9 runs in a single inning to take a 9-3 lead. The Phillies returned fire with a 7 run inning, giving them a 10-9 lead that they held until the end of the game. For the Braves, it is sad that you can score 9 runs in a single inning and still not win the game.

Today was another explosive game. The Braves opened with a 2-0 lead before a 2 hour rain delay stopped play. When play resumed, the Braves extended their lead to 5-0. The Phillies, always big on offense responded with a 5 run inning. The then took the lead and padded it to a 12 to 5 lead with a string of 5-1-5-1 run innings through the 7th. The Braves responded with 5 runs in the 8th, but the Phillies held on to win it 12-10.

I like my team, but this was a bit too dramatic even for my taste. Also in today's game, McCann was taken out of the game injured after a collision at the plate with Shane Victorino.

Wednesday, July 23, 2008

Southern Talk

Today, for no particular reason, I was thinking about a phrase I remembered discussing in a Southern Lit class back at UCF. I had thought about doing a post on Southern phrases like this, but I couldn't find any I really liked, and the weird thing was that I keyed in this phrase on Google, both with and without quotes and got no matches outside of references to textile products, like low-rise cotton underwear.

So, do any of you know what it means if someone tells you "your cotton is low?"

My Moral Compass

We went to play trivia tonight and we did very well. In fact, we were tied for first place the entire night, having missed just one part of a four-part question. The final bonus was to decide the fate of three teams that were tied with 112 points of a possible 116.

I thought I had heard the question before, but I wasn't sure enough to suggest an answer, but the two teams we were tied with were both in the non-smoking room with us and they both answered very quickly. That is a good indicater that they knew it right off. One of our teammates had to use the restroom, but we knew he would go and use his palm pilot to check our suggested answer before we turned in.

In the past I have gone along with letting him cheat in this way, but tonight I knew it was wrong (not that I didn't know this before), but I made the decision to go ahead and turn in our answer while he was in the restroom.

After we turned in our answer I conferred with a friend on another team and confirmed our wrong answer, so we knew we were out of the running. We ha bet all 20 points so we dropped to 92 points and did not win a prize.

I don't want to be a cheater.

Pixel wanting a drink, or at least a straw to play with

Worless Wednesday - In the Mountains

Tuesday, July 22, 2008

The headline and the last line make the story

Looks like President Bush is pulling out early
Tuesday, July 22, 2008, 05:01 PM

The Atlanta Journal-Constitution

Faced with a line of heavy thundershowers bearing down from Alabama, the advance team for President Bush just gave the orders for an early return to Dobbins Air Reserve Base for his trip home.

The press entourage has been piled into their vans, air-conditioners running.

Here’s the story so far:

President Bush arrived at Dobbins Air Reserve Base at 3:47 p.m., stepped off at 3:56 p.m.

As greeting committees for presidents go, this was relatively low grade. Top official was Cobb County Sheriff Neil Warren. Next in line was Lou Brissie of South Carolina, a former pro pitcher from the 1940s and early ‘50s. Bush spent several minutes with him.

See post below.

Bush also posed with Sherri Goggin of Athens, who founded the volunteer group Bundles of Joy, which distributes gift packages to premature babies.

A 15-car parade left the base at precisely 4 p.m., taking Delk Road to I-75, which was a ghost of its usual self, even south bound. Then to West Paces Ferry Road to the residence of Harrison Merrill, a developer who specializes in restoring landmark buildings.

Bush went to the Dumbarton Road residence of Merrill for the fund-raiser intended to benefit Republican Rick Goddard, a retired Air Force major general who is challenging U.S. Rep. Jim Marshall of Macon, a Democrat.

Efforts to contact Goddard’s spokesman on Tuesday have failed to meet with any success.

Reporters were sequestered in a nearby house and saw nothing of the event itself, nor the people who attended. A spokesman for the governor confirmed that Sonny Perdue did attend.

The journalistic benefit of this experience has thus far been limited to the thrill of a rush-hour drive down an empty I-75.

Ten on Tueday - Least Favorite Celebs

My ten least favorite celebrities, in no particular order...

Rosie O'Donnell - she was fine as a bit actress and as a VH-1 VJ, but then she got her show and her whole existence became being a professional lesbian and liberal.

Ant - Comedian, for pretty much the same reason as Rosie. I don't care what you do in the bedroom, until you make it your entire purpose for being and thrust it in everyone's face. You no longer exist as a man, you exist as a gay man.

Paula Abdul - she's nice to look at, but for the sake of American Idol, find someone else.

Ryan Seacrest - I am convinced he is an alien because no one can do as much professionally in a week as he does without requiring rest. I did like that he mocked himself in "Knocked Up."

Paris Hilton, et al. - so we include Nicole Richie and any of their friends who have no reason to be celebrities in the first place.

Brittney Spears - the world does not revolve around this person.

Brett Farve - we need something new to talk about. Go retire and enjoy the gift you were given when your wife survived her cancer.

Miley Cyrus and her has been father.

Jolie/Pitt - see above, saame reason as Brittney

Monday, July 21, 2008

Trivia Monday

Amy and I played trivia tongiht at Johnny's New York Pizza and as a team of two we actually placed 2nd against 10-12 other teams. There were a few questions we had no clue on, and when it came to final bonus time, we were in second place by a margin of 3 points. We got the final bonus right, as did the team ahead of us, and they bet enough points to secure the win. The final bonus was this...

PLace the following arcade games in order from the first-released to the last (most recently) released.... Dance Dance Revolution, Pole Position, Tekken, Street Fighter.

We also had the half-time bonus question - Name 4 top-40 songs by Air Supply with either the word "in" or the word "out" in the title. I think the DJ listed 7 that qualified, but we could only name 3.

Small Southern Towns

Today after sleeping in a little, AMy and I watched TV for a bit and had lunch and watched "Definitely, Maybe" on DVD. After the movie we went out with an agenda I created and did not share. We drove up a little further NW of Atlanta to the towns of Acworth and Kennesaw. I really like elements of small Southern towns, the historic downtown main streets tend to have rows of small shops and restaurants and my favorite element is classic advertisements painted on the side of buildings. Here are some pictures I shot during our afternoon trip. And a word of warning, if you ever go to Acworth to see the historic downtown, don't go on Monday. About 80% of the businesses are closed on Monday!

Sunday, July 20, 2008


I have been having fun with Facebook. Amy suggested I try signing up, and I almost immediately started finding old High School, College, and Work friends.

In the past few days, I started scanning and posting pictures from my high school days. Some are from 8th grade and some include Senior Prom. If you have facebook (or even if you don't) I think anyone can look at my albums.

Thursday, July 17, 2008

Pixel's Home!

Pixel disappeared for two and a half days on us. We were getting worried and even called Animal Control today hoping they might have picked him up. About 5:10pm today he came in through the doggie door as if he had only been out for an hour.

Since Lucy died we have been keeping the doggie door closed, because another neighborhood cat comes in to eat our cat's food and has had confrontations with our kitties.

He got out when I went out to mow the lawn on Tuesday, and came home tonight. We did not notice at first, but he has a wound on his leg. I got a better look at it this evening, and it looks like something got a hold of his hair and pulled out a section, but there are no obvious puncture marks to indicate he was bitten, and he has his full ebergy and personality, so we expect he'll be okay, but we will work very hard to make him an indoor only cat from now on.

Amy has commented frequently that he has very pretty eyes, so below you'll see three pictures I took of him a few minutes ago, one showing off his eyes, and the others show his wound.

Wednesday, July 16, 2008

Thursday Thirteen High School

My lovely wife who now sports shorter, blonder hair told me about a funny post at Carlos' blog today. Carlos is and he was writing about how blogs are like living in high school. I really enjoyed my high school experience. I was quite well accepted espite being a fat geek. Seriously, I weighed 315 pounds during my senior year. With the exception of rock concert t-shirts, I wore only clothes my mother bought for me. I had no concept of hair style and my glasses were thick and for many years had tinted lenses. In fact, if I get enough comments on this post (I would say 50) I will post a high school era Valtool picture or two.

So for the theme of the Thursday Thirteen, I offer thirteen high school memories.

1. I played football for one year. I was an Offensive Right Tackle. It was 8th grade football and I did not return for Jr. Varsity the following year. I did join the marching band for the Spring of my 9th grade year because I was already in the concert band and if I marched I could go to the festival in Panama City Beach, FL.

2. I paid for the band trip and made about $200 in spending money by selling Krispy Kreme Donuts. We would order however many dozen we wanted to sell and then on Saturday we would either deliver them to neighbors who ordered them, or in my case go to a major intersection and hold them up. People would wave you over and you'd sell them to drivers stopped at the red light for $2 a box (this was the 80's) and you would make $1 profit for your charity.

3. I was in a number of clubs including the German Club. For 2 or 3 years I went to the State German Convention. It was held at a Boy Scout camp in Dahlonega, GA and we had various competitions ranging from history/geography to language skills and a skit competition. I remember one skit we did was a Fraternity Feude like Family Feude and the frat names were the Smoka Sigs and the Tappa Kegga Brew.

4. I wanted to be on Student Council pretty badly. I never won in the regular elections, but for my Senior Year I was selected as an at-large member, which was decided by the regular members.

5. I had my first real job starting during my Sophomore year. It was as a Courtesy Clerk (bagger) for Kroger. I was without a car, but I had a way to get there because my bus driver ran two routes for my school and if I got on the first run (I lived on the second run), she would drop me off at the shopping center with the Kroger as she drove back to the school for the second load.

6. I volunteered in the library. As I said, I was a geek.

7. Our computer lab at the time was filled with Apple II, Apple II-e, and Apple II+ computers and one Trash-80 (the Tandy TRS-80). I was in the computer club all 5 years of HS and was an officer 4 of those years. I remember playing the DOS versions of Castle Wolfenstein and a game that involved shooting a cannon over a hill based on angle/wind/powder. Each spring we had a Dr. J. vs. Larry Bird One-on-One Tournament.

8. I had friends among most every clique you can list, jocks, socialites, brains, rockers, geeks, band geeks, I dunno, I lost my train of thought, but I blended well.

9. We did not have a stadium at our school. We played our games at a county stadium at the local community college. After the games we would go eat at Chilis.

10. I went to a TON of concerts while in HS. The first was in February of 1985 and was Hall & Oates. Others included Sting, U2, Pink Floyd, The Cars, Madonna, Level 42, Bon Jovi, Boston, Whitesnake, Great White, Roger Waters, Bryan Adams, Billy Joel, & Bruce Springsteen. Most of these required working to get good seats and in the days before the internet that meant camping out at Turtle's Records & Tapes.

11. I could not get a date for the Senior Prom. I had some options, but none panned out. I decided to go alone because it would be better than not going at all. I had a good time and spent a lot less money than if I had gone with a date.

12. I organized a scavenger hunt for my friends and we ran it one day during the summer between our Junior and Senior years. Some of the items I had included an overdue library book, a copy of our principal's signature, the younger brother/sister of one of your teammates, and my favorite, a hubcap from the car of one of your opposing teams!

13. Bottle rocket wars. You get a few gross of bottle rockets, a small group of friends, a matching number of paper towel tubes with one end taped up, and a big empty playing field after dark. This was most of the same group we played cards and sometimes D&D with until the wee hours of the night on weekends, me, Pete (my brother), Hal and his brother Jon and Eric and his mom. Eric's mom did not participate in the bottle rocket wars, but she was part of the weekly calls to Dominos. We had the number memorized. :)

Tuesday, July 15, 2008

Dark Meat

So, this is the band that my brother-in-law is touring and performing on the same bills with. I have never seen the Grateful Dead, but I imagine this band models themselves after their style, from fashion to jam-band performance style. The one that scares me is the Charles Manson-looking percussionist visible in the back right of the 8th picture.

Sunday, July 13, 2008

Family Pride

After seeing my BiL Wes last night, I remembered the time I saw him on national TV with his then girlfriend M.I.A. That's Wes spinning for her when she performed on Kimmel a few years ago.

DJ Diplo In Roswell