Thursday, January 31, 2008

January's Gone

January 2008 will be history in a few hours. In looking back at my goals and intentions, I've made significant progress this month but our contract at work ends April 1st and all my goals may have to change.
I thought at one time that I was secure, but things seem to change daily and it's anyone's guess as to the outcome. The funny thing is, and I think I've said this before, I'm not worried. Regardless of what happens at work, I know that we will be fine. I might have to scramble for a while until I find my footing, but I've been there before - although it was so long ago that I can scarcely remember it.
As of January 3rd, I have been employed by the same companies (telephone company and EDS) for thirty one years. Viewing it from my current vantage point, it's hard to believe so much time has passed.
It is my intention to move into the next phase of my life make use of my creativity, energy, and skills. I also have a lottery ticket and hitting that would be sweet.

Wednesday, January 30, 2008


It was cold this morning with wind out of the north. Flossy and Mossy (the chickens) stayed on the roost a little longer than usual, and were just coming down from the huckleberry bush as I was leaving.
They are interesting creatures. They spend their days walking around the yard scratching leaves and pine straw looking for treasure. A treasure to them is a long red wiggle worm or maybe a big fat grub. Now when we walk out the door they come running because we usually bring out a cup of bird seed or cracked corn and throw out for them. They are so excited to see us.
I fixed them a nest this past weekend because they will start laying eggs soon. Two hens can keep us supplied in eggs.
When I was a kid, I can never remember buying eggs....or chicken either, for that matter. We had a chicken pen with about twenty hens and a couple roosters and we had more eggs than we could eat. We sold eggs, gave some away and we left some under the hens to make more chickens.
We used the waste to fertilize our garden. You had to let it sit for a long time or the chicken manure would be too rich for the soil and burn the tomatoes and squash up.
If things work out to where I am unemployed in a few months, I might just go into the egg business. I'll print up some eggcelent business cards and pass them out to all my friends.

Tuesday, January 29, 2008

Howling Wind

The wind is howling outside. A line of storms is moving this way and our power went off for about ten seconds and then came back on. Of course all the computers power cycled and all my digital clocks will now have to be reset, but hopefully we won't be eating by candle light tonight.
I'm listening to a fascinating book right now about how the guitar made its way into America. The writer lost his guitar to a careless baggage handler. The writer's wife agreed to buy him a new guitar and the book is about his research into guitars and the story of his guitar that is being built by a luthier in the Vermont.
I thought I knew a great deal about guitars, but in listening to this book, I've learned just how little I really know.
The lights are flickering again so I'm going to save and post this before I get plunged into darkness.

New Mandolin

I bought Jilda a new mandolin today. It was an Ovation that has electronics built in. The older mandolin she has now sounds great but without electronics it is difficult to hear when we play.
It's a beautiful instrument and it sounds really good even when unplugged. If you know of someone who would like to buy a good mandolin, let me know. I'll sell it right.
Instrument should add interest to the sound of The Overalls when we perform. We have a gig at Java & Jams on March 29th. Java & Jams is downtown Birmingham and a cool little coffee shop with really good food. Hope you all can join us.

Monday, January 28, 2008

Guitar Talk

This past weekend we went to hear some friends play at Java and Jams Coffee Shop in Birmingham, and while we waited for the music to start, a security guard who had stopped by for a cup of Joe before heading home, asked Jilda and me what we did.
While I sipped on my Mocha Latte, I explained that I was a computer guy during the day but that our "real calling" was songwriting and pickin' guitars. He said, "I'd give anything to learn to play a guitar, but I'm too old now." He was my age. I told him the story about our friend Randy who learned to play the guitar "late in life."
The thing is this, I explained, "if you want to learn to play badly enough, and you are willing to invest the time, you can learn to play." He looked at me as if he thought I was trying to sell him a used Toyota Tercel. It's a matter of focus and determination. While it is true that getting good enough to perform at Carnage Hall might be a stretch (though not totally out of the question), getting good enough to entertain your friends at parties is very doable.
I've heard so many people say "I don't have any talent," or "my fingers are too short," or a hundred other excuses. But the fact of the matter is, if you make up your mind you want to play and are willing to practice about 30 minutes a day for the rest of your life, you can play the guitar.
I'm not sure I convinced the security guard, but at least I gave him some food for thought and hopefully removed some barriers that might keep him for trying.

Sunday, January 27, 2008


There was a downturn in the coal business in the mid fifties and my dad got out of work. We had kinfolks in Indiana and Chicago who kept calling to tell us we should move up there.
After a few months of looking for jobs that didn't exist here, my mom and dad made the decision to pack us all up and head north. We had an old Chevy at the time and we headed out one Friday evening. Dad decided that since it was Memorial Day weekend, the weekend of the Indianapolis 500 race, that traffic might be heavy so he wanted to travel at night.
We drove for hours and somewhere in Northern Kentucky, dad started getting sleepy so he started looking for some place to pull over. He passed on the truck stops because of all the light and noise but we found a place that suited him so we parked there for a while. Back in the 50's and 60's, they used to maintain picnic areas by the side of the road. There would be several concrete tables and benches along with steel barrels where picnicker could leave their trash.
There weren't any picnics going on after midnight so dad got out with one of the pillows and made a bet out of one of the concrete tables. Mother took advantage of the empty front seat. We were left to fend for ourselves in the backseat. The only instructions my mother offered before dozing off was "if you wake your daddy, I will kill you and stuff you in one of these trash barrels."
We all looked at each other and decided to make the best of a tight situation.
I was about five years old and fairly small for my age so My sister picked me up and put me up on the hat-rack behind the back seat. It was a perfect fit for me. I wasn't very sleepy so I lay there and gazed through the slanted back glass at the stars. It was a beautiful spring night at the end of May and the stars looked like a field of diamonds spread out on a dark blue velvet cloth.
I think that's when I saw my first shooting star. It seemed to be in slow motion because I traced its path with my finger on the back glass.
I remember that the silence was broken every now and then by the sound of an oncoming car coming down a long hill. WhhhaaaaaaOhoooooooo. I assumed that this was all the racing cars headed for the race track. I didn't understand until much later that these were just regular cars passing in the night and the high pitched sound dropping to a lower pitched sounds was the Doppler effect.
Dad woke up a few hours later and we made Hammond, Indiana before lunch the next day. My brother Neil made fun of me for thinking the cars I heard were race cars.
Not sure what brought this memory to mind, but I've come to realize that I have to go with what I have.

Saturday, January 26, 2008

Saturday Night Geezer

Jilda and I went over to Java and Jams coffee shop tonight with our friend Fred to listen to Steve (the third Overall member) play a few sets with Joe Casey and Keith Swinford. It was refreshing to sit back and listen for a change. They all did really good.
Jilda and I wrote a new song this morning. It came as fast as any song we have ever written. We got a Taxi Dispatch yesterday calling for a folk song to be used in a movie about a woman who took ten years of her life and walked around the world. The idea captivated us and the words flowed effortlessly. I love it when that happens. When we get a decent recording of it, I'll post it so that you can hear.
It's way past our bedtime so I'm signing off for now. Have a great weekend.

Friday, January 25, 2008

Wintry Weather Possible

Not sure whether to believe the weatherman or not, but he's saying that we are in for some more "wintry weather". Tupelo, Mississippi is pink and it's slipping our way so we'll see fairly soon if I need to get out the ice skates. It will depend on whether the temps drop a degree or two.
We are going out to eat in Jasper with friends so I'm making a quick update now in case the power is off when we return.

Thursday, January 24, 2008

Blessing and a Curse

The contacts I wear are the kind that lasts about two weeks and they were nearing end-of-life, but I thought I could get another day out of them. The were fine this morning when I put them in, but when I got to work my eyes felt kind of blurry so I gently rubbed them. The contact in my right eye promptly rolled up tight as a Chinese spring roll. I had to dig it out with a pencil.
Needless to say, I've been wearing glasses all day and my eyes look as if I've been drinking tequila for a solid month.....or maybe used kerosene as eye get the picture.
Yep, contacts are a blessing and a curse. Most of the time they are a blessing, but today they were a curse.

Wednesday, January 23, 2008


I had an idea on my way to work today. I decided to go back through my old journals searching for blog ideas. The first one I picked up was from 1998, ten years ago. I had just graduated with my Masters from Birmingham Southern in May of 97 - a degree paid for by my company. Then in December of 97, BellSouth decided to outsource my job to EDS.
What was interesting about the 98 journal is that I kept a record of the books I read the previous year. On the list was:
Atlas Shrugged ~ Ayn Rand
Think and Grow Rich ~ Napoleon Hill
The Art of Exceptional Living ~ Jim Rohn
Double Whammy ~ Carl Haaison
Babbitt ~ Sinclare Lewis
Grapes of Wrath ~ John Steinbeck
Cannery Row ~ John Steinbeck
Sum of All Fears ~ Tom Clancy
Disclosure, Jurassic Park, and Congo ~ Michael Crichton
Brain ~ Robin Cook
Schindler's List ~ Thomas Keneally
Crazy in Alabama ~ Mark Childress
and Washington Goes to War ~ David Brinkley
Not a bad list for someone in graduate school.
.............I found myself reading my journal and not writing so I had to put it down so that I could finish here.
I met with my book editor today to discussed my expectations for my book. I was expecting it to take him several months to get everything in order but he assured me it would not take nearly that long. I'm excited.

Tuesday, January 22, 2008

No Spark

I've had the Bla's the last few days and I'm not sure why. I know the moon is full and the weather has been cold and rainy for several days, but I don't think that's it. I seem to go in cycles. There are times when ideas shoot out of me like static electricity and other times I feel as dull as lead.
When I checked my biorhythms they are all over the chart. So, I'm just going to have to ride this thing out until the spark returns.

Monday, January 21, 2008

Enjoying the Day

The wind shifted from out of the north and the sun came out. The sky was the color of the blue 1956 Ford Thunderbird. I usually walk indoors in the winter but I stepped outside to fetch something from my truck and it felt so nice, I decided to walk outside.
On they way home tonight I could see an incredible winter sunset and behind me was an almost full moon. What a show.
I didn't pay as much attention to the sun, moon and stars when I was younger. I guess I was too full of business to notice such trivial things, but as I grow older I think of them as gifts.
It's yoga tonight, so this entry will be a short one.

Sunday, January 20, 2008


Our friend Fred has been telling us for some time about the benefits of getting earbuds to use as sound monitors when we play. He said "they're a blessing and a curse!" But once you get used to them, you won't perform without them. We just didn't get it - until tonight.
Fred has a sound system that is used for small bands and when we plugged our guitars in and began playing through the system, we could hear everything. We could hear the parts that were right and we could hear the parts that were WRONG - thus the blessing and the curse. A few practices through these things and we'll know exactly what parts need work.
I've been singing a song with The Overalls for years and tonight when I had the earbuds in, I could tell I was singing flat. Not bad flat, but flat just the same. With that added attention, I was able to get it right. I'm ordering earbuds tomorrow for both Jilda and me.
We spent a great deal of time this morning going over our goals for the year to make sure we are on the same page. It's easier to reach a goal when we both are going in the same direction. We have both made writing and music a priority this year. We have been writing and performing for many years but in the past we seemed to lose focus and get sidetracked by the priorities of others. It is our goal and intention this year to move to the next level.
We are both excited.

Saturday, January 19, 2008

Non Event

Well today the "snow event" never materialized and the weatherman has egg on his face. I had to run into Birmingham this morning and the towns just a few miles south of us got a good bit of snow.
I had to shoot photos of the Honduran Missionary meeting today that was held at Birmingham Southern College. On the way to the meeting, I could see the campus was buzzing and the kids were having a large time.
The Southern campus is situated among rolling hills, and the kids had cardboard boxes, sliding down every hill in sight. One car had a tiny snowman on the trunk.
This evening the gray clouds still looked snowy but the dogs had cabin fever so I decided to take them for a walk. They were SOOOOO excited. Astro jumped a deer and he was out of sight in five seconds flat. About thirty minutes into the walk, the clouds had moved off to the east and the sunset was incredible.
I hope the deer has sense enough to turn around because if not, Astro is probably in Georgia by now.

Friday, January 18, 2008

Snow's a Coming

I made the ill advised decision to stop at the grocery store on the way home this evening. The place was packed. I swung by the milk isle and all that was left way soy milk and a few blocks of cheese. The bread isle looked as if locusts had descended like in the Bible, and scarfed up all the bread.
Having foreseen this, I got our milk and bread yesterday but I did want to get a bottle of wine for dinner tonight. the wine shelfs were puny too. There was plenty of the low end variety with twist off caps, but the rest was slim pickin's.
I always wonder what people do with all that milk and bread when it doesn't snow. People that endured the "big snow storm" back in the early 1990 have this Great Depression mentality. Back then, the power was off for days and some people were forced to eat unheated cream of celery soup and sardines. I guess people are thinking - snow me in once, shame on mother nature, snow me in twice, shame on me.
Anyhow, I made it out tonight and headed on home. I did make one more stop at the video store. Again, the shelves were almost bare. People were renting armloads of videos in anticipation of being snowed in. But folks are going to feel a little silly with a stack of movies they can't watch when the power goes off.

Thursday, January 17, 2008

Stick Shift

In 1978 Jilda and I had been married four years and she'd been driving a mangy 1967 Camera. It had a good motor but there were rust spots in the finders big enough to throw a dog through.
When I started to work for the phone company I bought me a little truck and a while later we went looking for her a new car.
We decided on the cheapest thing on the lot which was a brand new Honda Civic. No air, no power anything, and it was a stick shift. The only problem is that Jilda had never driven a stick shift. She looked inside the little vehicle and fell in love. It had a radio that really worked and the car just seemed to fit.
When the salesman asked her if she had any questions, she inquired about the extra pedal on the floor. "That's the clutch," he explained helpfully. He gave her some brief instructions - You put the shifter right here when you start off and when you pick up a little speed, you mash the clutch and put it here - and so forth."
She slid behind the wheel, mashed the clutch a little, ground that transmission into low gear and when she let off the clutch, the little bugger lurched up on the curb where the motor promptly died. But Jilda does not rattle easily. She cranked that engine, stomped the clutch in, revved up that engine and she burned rubber in three gears.
She was driving like Mario Andriette before we got to the Sumiton City Limits and every car we have owned since then (except for her Volvo) has been a stick shift.
Not sure what brought that story to mind, but here it is.

Wednesday, January 16, 2008


The weatherman had downplayed the chance of snow around here. He said that the very top of Alabama and Georgia stood a fair chance of seeing the white stuff so we went about our day as if it were not an option. Then this afternoon when we ran down to the store to pick up a few things we started seeing some light sleet pecking at the windshield. As we shopped, you could see the snow coming down fairly hard. All the clerks at the front of the store could barely work for looking out at the white stuff.
Alabama does not get snow that often and when we do get it, even small amounts, everyone gets excited. When we got home it started snowing really hard and before long our deck was covered lightly and you could see the snow on the trees and in our field.
It snowed long enough for me to get a couple pictures to post. This was Ol' Buddy's first snow and he was not impressed as you can see by the photo.
It has stopped now and it's melting off the roof. I suspect that by tomorrow morning there will be no evidence that it was ever here, except for a few photographs.

Tuesday, January 15, 2008


We were making great time home this evening. In fact, from the Panhandle of Florida up through the back roads of south Alabama and through Montgomery, we blew threw at the legal speed limit. It looked like we'd be home in time to take Ol' Buddy for a walk before we lost the light of the day. But when we hit the north side of Birmingham heading up I-65, I began to see tail lights from up ahead. "Looks like a wreck," Jilda said, but I was in the wrong lane to avoid problems by going east or south so I coasted to a stop and inched my way to the first exit which was about a mile away.
Seems an 18 wheeler had some kind of mishap in the construction area and everything headed north was at a stand still. It would have been easy to have gotten steamed but we chose to crank up the radio and listen to music and talk about ideas for new songs we want to write. After a long while, the right lane seemed to open a little and we made it to the exit and we dashed on home without incident.
I've gotten a lot better at the art of being present. You can't change the pass and the future is totally out of your control. The only thing left is now. You can choose to be miffed or you can consider your time with a loved one a gift. In this situation, I considered it a gift and came up with a hook for a song that is a winner.
I think this stuff comes with age. Today I am 57 years old. It's like what Eubie Blake said - "if I had know I was going to live this long I would have taken care of myself." When I look in the mirror, it looks like my head has worn out two bodies, but if you pay attention, you get smarter as you get older.
Anyhow, we're home now and tomorrow, we plan to sleep in.

Monday, January 14, 2008

I've had a crash course in recording tonight and my head is full. I've been sitting here for some time tapping the keys and nothing comes to mind. So I'm taking a pass tonight. After all, I'll be a birthday boy in a few hours.
More tomorrow.

Sunday, January 13, 2008

Ghost Town

There was a lot of heat on the highway today on our trip south. The last time I headed this way I got a speeding ticket, so I slowed down and smelled the asphalt. We passed no fewer that ten policemen and almost all of them had speeder pulled over. I puttered by them all at the legal limit. I did notice that it seems to have taken forever to get here today, but I don't need another ticket so I guess it was a small price to pay.
We ate dinner tonight with our friends Wes and Deidra and their daughter Leah. I had grouper and Jilda had Shrimp and grits. Everything was very good.
Tomorrow we plan to walk on the beach in shorts and sweaters. I love the beach this time of year. It looks like a ghost town in January.

Saturday, January 12, 2008


We had dinner with our buddy Fred tonight and afterwards we went over to Book a Million to browse. When we got to the section on music I wanted to tell the clerk - I'll take one of each of everything in this area.
Fred got out spending only about $30 dollars. The hit Jilda and I for about$60. We both love books and read a great deal. I think when I retire, I might get three part time jobs - one at Books a Million, one at BestBuy and the other at Home Depot. I think getting discounts at those places would be like getting a raise.
Jilda are headed out of town for a short trip to the beach. I have a birthday coming up on the 15th so we thought we'd celebrate there. I'm hoping they have Internet connectivity at the place we are staying or else I'll have to spend time looking for a connection.
Have a great weekend.

Friday, January 11, 2008

Like An Old Friend

I've got an old t-shirt that I've had for years. It's the one I alway reach for after a long hard day at work. I got it at the Frank Brown Songwriter Festival at Gulf Shores in 2001. The festival was an extraordinary weekend and they gave us t-shirts for performing at the festival. Whenever I put on the shirt, I always think of good music, excellent food, and and a beautiful sunset.
I don't think it has any type of magical properties, but it seems more comfortable than all my other shirts.
It's like the taste of comfort food when the world seems to be crumbling around you. When life is nipping at my heels and I am strung tighter than a piano wire, give me fried chicken, mashed potatoes and green beans and I feel like I can make it through.
Today was a long and stressful day and putting on the t-shirt tonight was like spending time with an old friend.

Thursday, January 10, 2008

Tornado Boy

I've had a good bit of fun lately at Jilda's expense. Terror Girl and so forth but if she was writing a blog, after tonight I would be known as Tornado Boy.
I had been watching the weather all day because it has been nasty in Mississippi and when things get nasty in Mississippi, it usually gets nasty in Alabama too. I wrapped up my work a little early so I hit the road thinking that I would get home before the bad weather hit. I further thought (erroneously) that most of the bad weather was going to sweep north of us so I took the southerly route home. As it turns out, I blew through Dora/Sumiton just as the Tornado Warning sirens were going off. I couldn't see the funnel so I trudged on. I got behind a tractor trailer hauling a load of lumber and I cursed my luck under my breath because he too turned north on the Empire road and I knew I would be behind him for the next eleven miles. As it turns out, being behind the truck was a blessing because about two miles up the road the wind began to blow. I knew it was going to get bad when I saw a limb the size of a baseball bat hurling through the air in front of my truck as if it had been thrown by and angry batter who had just struck out. Soon it was raining harder than I have ever seen it rain in my life. The 18 wheeler slowed to a crawl and I got up close behind him and we drove down the middle of the narrow two-lane road for a few miles. The wind was rocking both vehicles. Thank goodness the storm stayed aloft or I might have been posting this from Chattanooga.
Then almost as quickly as it started, the rain slowed to a patter and the darkness was behind us.
Jilda was calling on the cell phone ever three or four minutes to give me updates but once we drove out of the worst part, it was smooth sailing.
I would say I was afraid, but there are new finger indentions on my steering wheel and I'm sure my underwear will need to be washed with Clorox.

Wednesday, January 09, 2008

A Remarkable Thing to See

The evening sky tonight looked like spring when the weather can't decide whether it wants to be cold or hot. Some of the clouds overhead lurked low and dark as if to say, "step out of that truck and I'll send down a bolt of lightening that will fry you like bacon!" And just when I thought it was going to get really nasty, the sun broke through just before it dipped below the horizon and threw colors at me like the ones I remember seeing as a child, looking through a kaleidoscope.
What a remarkable thing to see. What a gift.

Tuesday, January 08, 2008

Making Progress on the Goals

Got a line on another publication for my column today. My friend, Wayne with whom I work told me about a monthly publication in the high rent section of Birmingham. It’s called 280 Living. The publication gets the name from Highway 280 that dissects the area.
brought me the paper today and I simply looked on the ownership page and found the editor-in-chief and gave her a call. When I told her about my style of writing, she sounded genuinely interested. We discussed price briefly and when I told her she could run a few months for free to see if the column was a fit for her publication, she was ready to see samples of my work.
I sent two of my old columns, “Daddy Taught Me How to Cuss” and “Ol’ Buddy Changed My Mind.” Hopefully she’ll give me a shot which is all I would ask for.

Monday, January 07, 2008

Mad as a Hornet

Ol' Buddy was mad as a hornet when I came home today. Apparently the UPS man had made a delivery at our house and Ol' Buddy was inside the backyard fence.
Whenever Buddy is in the front yard and the UPS guy pulls in the drive, a ruckus ensues. He charges the brown monster, snaps and snarls and circles the truck until he gets dizzy. He pees on every tire and dares the UPS man to step out of the truck. Ol' Buddy has never tried to bite the guy but he lets him know who's the boss and that mail carriers of any kind are not welcome on the premises.
Since he couldn't get out of the fence, he barked up the delivery dude from behind the mesh. By the time I got home, he had come back in through his doggie door and dumped the trash can in my bathroom. That's his way of saying "hey mister, you need to install me a doggie door that opens to the front! How do you expect me to keep the riff-raff out of our yard!"
I'm just glad Ol' Buddy is not as big as he thinks he is.

Sunday, January 06, 2008


I now know why it costs a small fortune to record music. Not only does it take a lot of expertise to capture the sounds, and apply the correct processing to the various pieces - vocals, rhythm, lead, drums, etc. but the equipment and software are expensive.
I've worked all day to get a decent recording of one song. Mind you, I'm still spending a great deal of time figuring things out and that can get frustrating. Once I got the setup just right, then you have to record and re-record until the music is right.
My friend Fred has taught me a great deal about sound, but the more I learn, the more I realize I don't know squat. What I need to do is set Fred up in my spare bedroom and feed him in exchange for teaching me how to become a better engineer.
I know that once I get really competent doing this stuff it will pay dividends because the sound quality of our music will get better and better.
But sitting here right now, my head is full, my fingers are tired, and I'm thinking about changing my vocation to picking up aluminum cans.

Saturday, January 05, 2008

Old Tapes

Some old friends showed up at the gig last night. Don and Gaye Fewell were our close friends back in the trailer days. They had a trailer in her families yard in Dora and ours was by the park in Sumiton. We had lots in common including the love of music.
Jilda and I were in a short lived band with Don in the early 70's. We played a unique brand of southern rock and I really thought the sound was special but for one reason or another we couldn't keep it together and we all went our separate ways, but we did make a few tapes that survived.
During a break last night we began to reminisce about the old group and I told Don that I still have a cassette with a few of the songs. He was excited and asked me to burn him a copy.
I must have 10,000 cassette tapes in my closet so early this morning I started sorting through them. The last plastic bucket in which I looked contained the tape. A bonus of the search was that I came across an old tape interview I made with my grandmother, Willie Watson. Listening to those old tapes was a delightful way to spend a morning.
The songs from the band were rough, but you could hear really good pieces and I have no doubt that had we been able to work out our differences, we could have done something remarkable but that was not meant to be.
I dubbed the interview with my grandmother to MP3 and burned a copy for my sister and other family members. I know they will absolutely love hearing the voice that was woven into the fabric of our past.
The gig was fun. It's always fun to play but when you are surprised by old friends, it makes it even more rewarding.

Friday, January 04, 2008

Gig Tonight

The Overalls have a gig tonight at Ciao's Cafe in Mountain Brook. I've never been there but our bandmate Steve has done solo gigs there a few times. He said it's a good room and they have good food. It is our intention to perform more this year. It keeps us sharp and the juices flowing.
I'd like to go to the Kerrville Folk Festival out in Texas one year. It is one of the premier folk festivals in the country. Each year they have an incredible lineup of bands and singer songwriters. The festival runs for almost three weeks and I'm guessing you could really get folk-ed up in three weeks.
It will be late tonight so this is it for the entry. If you are a potential bugler who plans to hit my house tonight while we are playing, you should probably know that we leave our dog Astro in and he's meaner than Satan with a toothache.

Thursday, January 03, 2008


I got an editor for my book today. My friend Clarke Stallworth who is a legendary write and editor called me in a panic today. He's semi retired but still edits Senior Living which is a monthly paper distributed here in Alabama.
I could tell he was not a happy camper so I told him to just breathe and I would run over during lunch to see if I could help.
As it turns out, his computer was not hung up at all, it seems that his batteries died in his wireless mouse so in less than five minutes, he was back online and very happy.
We had time to talk for a while before I headed back to work. I mentioned my intention to publish my book this year, and that I was looking for an editor. "You got one my friend," he said flatly. So by a simple twist of fate - dead batteries in a wireless mouse - I now have taken the second step towards publication. Obviously the first step was to write the columns. He also told me he also has a friend who is a book publisher and promised to place the book in his hands. "You know as well as I that getting a book published can be a long shot, but we'll put it in his hands and see what happens," he explained.
I'm telling you there is something to this idea of writing down your Intentions. That was what I did a few days ago. I'll keep you all posted to on the progress of this project.

Wednesday, January 02, 2008

Cold Weather

It was colder than a well diggers shovel this morning. The wind was still gusting out of the north and my truck turned over slowly. When I got to work, I slide off the seat and promptly got the stew shocked out of me with static electricity. I know the shock is usually not that bad, but it makes me cuss every time it happens.
Another thing about cold weather, the air seems to be much drier. When I got home this evening it felt like my contacts were glued to my eyeballs. I thought I was going to have to scrape them off with a match stick.
It will be cold again tonight and then start moderating a little this weekend. I know we need a little cold weather to keep the pesky insect population down, but dang it makes my joints hurt.

Tuesday, January 01, 2008

Cold Hard Wind

The chimes on our side porch have sang all day long. I took down the outside Christmas decorations and I had to put on gloves. The sun was out but it definitely felt like winter here today.
We also took the decorations off our live tree and I planted it on the south end of the house.
For some reason today reminded me of a day back in 1971 when I was in the Army. My friend Rick Flanders who lived in Watertown, New York invited me to go home with him over a long weekend and ski. I had never skied before but it sounded like fun. Almost every time we traveled when I was in the Army, we hitchhiked, but on this particular weekend, the day was a lot like today. the sky was almost blue and cloudless but the wind out of the north would cut you like a box blade.
So on this particular trip we splurged and took a bus. We camped out on the back seat of the Greyhound and sometime late in the night, I brought out the guitar and began to softly play some old folk songs. Before long, a crew of young folks had moved back to the back of the bus and we sang old songs until the sun came up.
My skiing adventure began precariously when I fell face first off the lift before my feet ever touched the snow. I was on the bunny slopes but I was slow getting the hang of skiing. I spent more time on my butt than on the skies.
But it was a fun weekend and a fun memory that has put a smile on my face many times.

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