Wednesday, February 24, 2010

K. Fimster

We lost a friend last night.

Paul was many things- some consistently, some at different times: A dreamer, a pragmatist, a scoundrel, a father, a son, a salesman, a writer, a tinkerer, a promoter, a wastrel, a wanderer, a friend. He was at times infuriating, engaging, inspiring, hilarious and kind.

While nearly all of us feel we've suffered injustice in our lives, Paul suffered very real injustice and it nearly defeated him, but ultimately, he chose to live on with optimism and joy.

He was the common thread that bound the fabric of the lives of many of us, and many of my most treasured friends are known to me only because Paul brought us together either directly or indirectly.

Also, bless the Sisters of Sacred Heart Convent in Cullman Alabama, for their kindness and loving grace. They have my eternal love, respect and gratitude for their part in a spirit restored.

Monday, February 22, 2010

"Crazy Heart"

I saw this last night with my brother. I've always liked Jeff Bridges, and I'm really hoping he wins the Oscar for this one. He deserves it.

Friday, February 19, 2010

Jim Croce "Lover's Cross"

I was just a baby when Buddy Holly died, but when Jim Croce was killed in a small plane crash just 50 miles from my home in Louisiana, I was old enough to be stunned.

I think I was aware that the concert was happening, and at 15, I'm not sure there was a practical way for me to attend, it just never occured to me that the chance would never come again.

I honestly don't think history has given this guy his due. He was a brilliant songwriter.

Article from the Shreveport (LA) Times (September 22, 1974)

Success Escaped Croce Until Death

NATCHITOCHES, The Jim Croce legend lives on.

On the night of September 20, 1973, a fiery plane crash in Natchitoches killed Croce and five of his entourage. It has only been since his death that Croce has achieved the level of success which somehow escaped him during his lifetime.

That Croce was a talented man has never been disputed by critics. His talent consisted of singing, songwriting and instrument playing. He will be remembered not only for his songs and style but also as being a man who put the term "junkyard dog" in the English vocabulary.

Croce's death has been compared to the February 3, 1959 plane crash in which Don McLean made so much of in his "American Pie" as the beginning of the end. That Iowa crash claimed the lives of Buddy Holly, Ritchie Valens and J.P. "Big Bopper" Richardson.

The comparison should never be made. Holly, Valens and Richardson had already made stardom. Croce was still seeking his.

The September 20 concert at Northwestern State University, Croce's last, was a vivid account of his life. He told the audience of his life as a truck-driver, construction worker, tractor operator and his many nights in playing in dimly-lit dives and staying in cheap motels.

His final performance was brilliant. His songs were good, his guitar playing was great and his story telling was fascinating. His voice had a quality that was much better live than on records. Despite his performance, Croce was not called to do an encore.

The audience gave polite applause and proceeded to leave the building. There was no standing ovation, hysterical applause or calls for Croce to come back on stage for a few more minutes.

Croce's closing comment was, "See you later."

Thursday, February 18, 2010

Snow is still a novelty at my house

This has been one hell of a long, cold winter. I'm ready for it to be over.

Tuesday, February 16, 2010

Random yet profound Demotivator

I sometimes tell folks I used to be an "Area Manager" for Wendy's. When they ask: "where?", I tell them "the area around the french fry machine".

Sunday, February 14, 2010

This pretty much sums it up.

Mardi Gras in Tuscaloosa!

We attended the "Mystic Krewe of Druids" Mardi Gras Ball at the old Bama Theatre in Tuscaloosa last night.
Big fun with great, campy entertainment. A big crowd, seemed to be a great success.

Friday, February 12, 2010

Snow in Bluff Park-Cardinal

There's a vivid contrast with the bright red of this cardinal against the snow.
Taken from the comfort of my den.

Thursday, February 11, 2010

Seems Reasonable, I Guess...

More Jay in Your Day!

No, actually the one above is David.

Panama City Beach Road Trip-The Postmortem

Upon final reflection and evaluation, I'd have to say the trip was an unqualified success.

I got to show off my dancing skills
and David is still as youthful as ever. I think the coastal lifestyle suits him well.

Tuesday, February 9, 2010

Get comfortable!

So I watched the Super Bowl at Wayne's. He made Pizza with fresh tomatoes and basil with a pastry-type crust.

He's a good cook, but I think he may need to adjust the sensitivity on his smoke alarm.

Bumper Sticker of the day

Saturday, February 6, 2010

Home of The Wampus Cats

When I was in High School in Leesville, Louisiana, our Mascot was the "Wampus Cats". We assumed it was some sort of regional colloquialsm for a Bobcat, as all the team uniforms, yearbooks, etc used a stylized logo that looked like one. Of course, once the internet came along, I was able to discover that the "Wampus Cat" is a mythical beast from Cherokee folklore more akin to a "Bigfoot".

In the Southern Appalachian Mountains, we have the legend of the Wampus Cat. This fearsome creature has been talked about for hundreds of years. It was a part of Cherokee Indian mythology that was later passed on to the white settlers and included in their folklore.
The legendary beast that is today called the Wampus Cat was once known as Ewah by the Cherokees. Just the sight of this creature was enough to drive people insane, they said. The ancient tale about the Wampus Cat maintained that it was actually a Cherokee woman who did not trust her husband. One night, her husband went out with a group of fellow warriors to go on a hunt. His suspicious wife put on a mountain lion fur coat and went out to spy on him. When she was found out, the medicine man punished her by forcing the woman to wear the coat forever. Her spirit still wanders the Southern Appalachians in the form of the Wampus Cat, according to a Web site.
There is another ancient Cherokee tale about the Wampus Cat. A long time ago, the creature had been terrorizing the villages and causing all kinds of misery for the Cherokees. One young warrior decided that his people had endured enough. He went out in search of the Wampus Cat in order to kill it. However, when he finally encountered the creature, he was driven insane.
His brave and devoted wife decided she would take care of the problem herself but use a different tactic. She put on a mask and went up into the mountains searching for the creature. She managed to sneak up behind it. The cat turned and saw her fearsome mask. The creature was so terrified it ran away and was never seen again. However, it is said that the spirit of the young woman still wanders the mountains wearing her mask.
As the white settlers moved into the Appalachians, they learned about the legend of the Wampus Cat and it became a part of their lore. To this day, folks living in Knoxville and other parts of east Tennessee claimed to have seen it. They report that it is a catlike creature that walks on its hind legs and has glowing eyes.
The Wampus Cat also became associated with witchcraft. One tale concerned a woman who lived alone in the mountains and was known to be a witch. At night, she would turn herself into a cat and steal chickens and pigs from nearby farms. Some people in east Tennessee say she is still doing that.
Another weird tale about the Wampus Cat comes from Alabama and this one is associated with a secret government program. According to this legend, the government sought to create a fast and fearless creature that would be used in World War II as a kind of messenger. This program was based in a remote section of Alabama. The creature supposedly created there was part mountain lion and part gray wolf.
However, several males and females of the newly created species escaped from the government compound and were never captured. Folks living in this part of Alabama claim to still see these creatures running around. The sightings have happened as far south as the Florida Everglades and as far north as the Great Smoky Mountains. Some people blame these creatures for breaking into chicken coops and attacking livestock.
Mike Conley | The McDowell News

Thursday, February 4, 2010

The Soon-To-Be Viral "Mixed Emotions" Joke

Here's a funny joke circulating on the internet that I hadn't seen before.

A man and his wife were watching a television program on psychology, and the subject being covered was mixed emotions. The wife was fascinated with the subject, but as the program wore on, the husband became more and more frustrated. Finally he had had enough of the banality.

"This program is bullsh*t! There is no way you can be extremely happy and incredibly sad at the same time!"

His wife replied that she thought it definitely was possible.

He replied "I bet you a hundred dollars that you can't possibly say anything that would make me happy and sad at the same time!"

The wife thought a minute and said "You have a bigger penis than any of your friends."