Thursday, November 30, 2006

Big Sister

This is a picture of my big sister, taken some 65 or so years ago. Back then I thought her sole existence was to be my protector.

I like this photo of her because it seems to show her positivism. It also shows that she was hyper. Now, she is not that hyper, in fact, she is kind of relaxed and laid back - but she is still very positive.


I progress through a book slowly. I probably read slowly but I think the biggest reason I slowly go from beginning to end of a book is that I am always juggling more than one book.

THE TOMMYKNOCKERS was 747 pages. That is a lot of pages for a person like me. I forgot when I started the book, but it wasn’t last week or I don’t even think it was last month – but it may have been.

As you may recall I was had THE TOMMYKNOCKERS book with me when I went to my neurologist and he said he read it also and he gave me a very quick short sentence description and from the beginning to the ending. I walked out of the doctor’s office telling Anna, “Well, so much for reading the book now.”

But I did. The well meaning doctor did not tell me the details – the details would have taken all day. That is what is so good about a Stephen King book is the endless details that do not mean anything much, but it is entertaining to be exposed to.

It is about a flying saucer that landed in Maine (Stephen King’s home state) millions of years ago, the discovery, the “dig” or the excavation of the space craft and the changes of the local citizens during this time.

Some parts of the book got a little far-fetched for my comprehension and I had to back up and reread some segments more than once, and I still wasn’t sure I got the jest.

I like the way Stephen King can put himself into each character. I think he magically possesses the character he just made up and thinks like that person thinks. If there are two people in a conflict he possesses each of them at different time – first he takes character number one and possesses him and puts words with feelings from mind, then he retorts what character number one said when he possesses character number two. It is almost as if he is creating lives and then plays uses them for a chess game.

The details and the characters are done so well – to fit profiles of people so well it is just worth reading. It was a good book.

Muffling Flatulents

I learned something Tuesday I should have learned long ago.

Never eat a Brandi’s World Famous Hotdog with its spicy chili laced with raw onions, complemented with deep fried onion rings and go to a meeting that people are sitting side by side, row after row, within 24 hours.

About six hours after my Brandi hotdog experience I returned to the center of Marietta to attend the Cobb County Genealogical meeting at the Cobb County Central Library.

They had a speaker with a topic I wanted to hear more about. It was putting your genealogy visuals (old pictures, movies, etc) onto DVDs and all the advantages and some of the techniques… it looked like something that would be nice to know and maybe utilize some day… then, instead of printing off a book, just burn them a DVD and they can sit in front of their TV and learn about their family history.

As soon as they darkened the room and started showing on the pull-down screen the various DVD possibilities I got the methane eruptions, aka farts. Luckily, sitting on top of the little belcher I was able to muffle the sound. I think then that hotdog, chili, and onions simmering in its own juices decided it was time to turn into deadly fumes. It was like sitting on something lightly popping. From time to time I would shift buttocks on the hard chair but clamped down during the shift. I have a mild cold, so I don’t know if my inner-bowel eruption of methane gas was smelly or not. I did notice once the lady in front of me turn around and look at me and other people, but saw somebody she knew behind me and waved. Was she looking for the source of the farts or trying to locate her friend?

When she turned around and focused on me for a brief second I should have pointed with my finger in front of my chest to the elderly lady sitting beside me.

Wednesday, November 29, 2006

The Bluebirds Lay Over In Marietta

The other day I was out raking and burning in the backyard and walked over to the fence to speak to Jim who was also working in his back yard.

While gossiping about Bob and his family two or three Bluebirds came close. Jim identified as Bluebirds and some more materialized, then some more. Before too many minutes we were surrounded by a dozen or more Bluebirds
Of course my first thought was Alfred Hitchcock’s “The Birds” movie.

Jim said they were migrating south.

That got me thinking. You think of birds migrating south as Canadian Geese flying gracefully in their triangle formation. But other birds fly south for the winter also. Hummingbirds fly south for the winter and Bluebirds, and many other kinds.

I suppose for the smaller birds there is no advantage of flying high.. why not fly low so you can stop to eat and rest more often.

I remember a few years ago watching the movie “Winged Migration” and liked it so much we taped it.

In the movie it was said that the head bird has been that route before. Once, it was a trainee taking mental notes of landmarks, longitude, and all that kind of navigational stuff.

What if a certain little Bluebird of the group we saw the other day was the one assigned to take notes because the old Bluebird leader was going to stay in Florida this time and retire?

When he got to our neighborhood the little Bluebird carefully noted the landmark by noting: “Two old farts leaning on rakes talking.”

And then, next year he will be the leader and when he gets to our area we are not there – we either have doctor’s appointments or that particular day falls on a Wednesday and it is senior discount day at the grocery stores?

The little Bluebird will not let on he is lost and lose the confidence of the group following him…. He will bravely fly on (and off course). Which in turn, they will land and set up winter quarters in an unknown territory…. The certain plants that was depending on the birds to move their seeds around (remember “the birds and the bees”?) will not have that service and they all dry up and die which was a key part of the ecological system, which will cause the Domino Effect, and all life on Earth cease to exist.

It all happened because Jim and I was at the wrong place at the wrong time, which is a shame because people can’t blame the Democrats or the Republicans.

Sweet Edna

This is Edna Garrett White. She and I are descended from Joseph and Elizabeth Mashburn Garrett of Fannin County, where she was born.

Somehow or another, Edna ended up in Marietta. And another somehow or another we bumped heads while doing family research and quickly found out we were related.

One time I spent a day in her very nice house copying pictures and artifacts. She was very hyper and very accommodating.

That was about 1977. She and her husband are both dead now.

Her husband was a quiet easy going type of guy with handsome thick stock of white hair. When I was there photo-copying old family pictures and photographing family artifacts she was constantly criticizing her husband to his face and comparing me to him. She pointed out to him that I worked, had sons that I carried places, and on top of that, did family research and came to people’s houses – and there I was, doing just that. And what did Mr. White do to justify his existence? He sat around all day and watched TV! Hmmfff!!

She said even in the yard, she did all the yard work, however, she did admit that he did break from his TV enough time to mow the grass, she gave him that.

Well, heck, if that what he wants to do, let the poor man be. I don’t know, but maybe he worked hard all his life, and then retired, and his old body was tired. Why make him miserable? Or maybe he just needed a little positive reinforcement – which I doubt he ever got.

Tuesday, November 28, 2006

M.R.I. & Brandi's World Famous Hotdogs

This morning I went for a M.R.I. I’m sure M.R.I stands for something, but it must be on a need-to-know bases, no one thinks I need to know.

My neurologist couldn’t find any thing wrong with my system that would cause my left hand or left foot to jerk and lined me up to have the M.R.I.

I reclined on a cushion thing and a huge machine surrounded me. Before l reclined the technician, with little Santa Clauses all over her medical uniform, put little ear plugs in each ear. I could still hear, but maybe it would have been much worse without the ear plugs. The procedure took about an hour, in 3 to 6 minutes segments. It reminded me much of “Close Encounters Of A Third Kind”… with maybe a knocking sound or a wooden shoe clogging sound would be 4 or 5 sounds…. Then a different sound much stranger would repeat the same number of bursts of sound… then the other original clicking or knocking would make itself slightly different, but again with the 4 or 5 sounds and then stranger thing would repeat the rhythm but in blasts of a freight train, or a wind tunnel. The technician also put a cloth over my eyes so I could “relax”. Relax or prevent me from seeing the little long neck creatures with the almond shape eyes communicating with an earthman man doctor who is using musical chop sticks, one red and one blue?

It took about an hour… oh yeah, I almost forgot, she also shot a fluid into my arm to see the contrast in my jaw she said…. Okay, just so it is not embalming fluid.

After it was over with, just around the corner and up the street a couple of blocks is Brandi’s World Famous Hotdogs, formerly known as Betty’s World Famous Hotdogs.

I paid Brandi a visit and got a chili dog and onion rings to go. Brandi is back at work from having her baby daughter. A picture of the little baby girl on the cash register has been replaced by Brandi and her baby in a sepia tone. On the other hand, other than the picture Brandi looked sloppy. Up until now she has looked perky, witty, and on top of everything. And her little sister, who is taller, looked like the discontent employee. Now, Brandi seems to just walk around and complain to the people she knows… telling them she is depressed for whatever reason I couldn’t overhear and the sister, who never smiled is now always smiling and eagerly taking orders…. Another thing, Brandi always wore a low-cut of some kind to accentuate her boobs. Today she has a old jersey on and her sister had on the low-cut with, I bet, a Victoria’s Secret Bra on.

They take care of their regular customers. While I was waiting, an old black man walked in. He had on working clothes. He sat down beside me and the sister handed him an order of fries and Brandi handed him a chili-dog fresh from the hotdog cooker. The old man didn’t have to say a word, they knew exactly what he wanted… and I bet he is a good tipper.

Be Careful What You Wish For

On my incoming emails I have made little make-believe folders dividing them into various groups and subdividing them into the names and jokes worth keeping. And I made similar little make-believe folders for my outgoing email.

I kept them sorted for a year or so until the past few weeks and then the novelty wore off and I realized it was work trying to find just which cubbyhole an email might go in. And which jokes justified being kept?

They piled up on me. My incoming mail box had about 350 emails in it. I just kept putting off sorting them in the right place.

Anna stays on top of her incoming emails and never has over three or four pending in that position.

My outgoing email is probably an equal number because what comes in usually goes back out as a reply – the same method is used in Cobb County to charge for your sewage use…. What comes in water is assumed to go out in sewage, which may be a good comparison.

But my outgoing mail is not visible as my incoming email is. Out of sight, out of mind.

I was putting if off the sorting and wishing my incoming email that I have already responded to was gone.

I was in pain yesterday and decided to take it easy. I went to take a hot shower and when I returned some how all my incoming emails had vanished! Gone with a blink! Not only were they gone out of my incoming box but also gone from the files I had already sorted.


Of course some of it had valuable genealogy information and other stuff I would have like to keep… and one on one conversations with friends – gone.

Maybe my computer got tired of waiting on me to take care of the job and took matters in its own hands, or wires. Or maybe a virus, or who knows.

That had happened before and Adam found the emails way back in the memory of my computer, but I think we have upgraded computers since then.

Be careful what you wish for.

Monday, November 27, 2006

Will Elder and his Fans

Back in the early 1950s, when I was in the 7th grade Will Elder was one of the three artists for MAD comic book. That should be no surprise if you read all my blogs and have a retention for useless information.

I sent Will Elder a letter back then telling him how much I enjoyed his art work. He sent me a note back thanking me for my nice words and a hand drawn signed cartoon of a Reggie (of “Archie”) type of fellow pulling the wings and legs off an insect and the balloon above his head said “She loves me, she loves me not…”

Will Elder and one of the other three MAD cartoonists were very fan-friendly. They knew they were nothing without admirers.

After I returned from the Navy my Bill Elder cartoon, under frame when I left, was no longer hanging in my bedroom where I left it. They said they didn’t know what become of it. So much for my original Will Elder cartoon.

After Elder left MAD he and his work friend Harvey Kurtzman went on to create TRUMP magazine, HUMBUG magazine, HELP magazine, and they also created and maintained Annie Fanny of PLAYBOY which ran for years and years.

In fact, Annie Fannie was their longest running gig.

After Will retired I sent him another letter praising his work and his history and I explained that the original he sent me disappeared. He sent me another original, which I have framed. It is of his creation Annie Fanny (see above).

Even after he is retired he still apprecaites his fans.

Post Thanksging & Pre Christmas

Today is Cyber Monday. Friday was Black Friday.

Friday a big percent of the retailers, the day after Thanksgiving, saw black for the first time this year, from people rushing to sales and to get their Christmas shopping behind them.

And today, some companies with large office staffs may fall into the red because of employees pretending to work at their computers, but are actually doing their Christmas shopping on the Internet.

I hope companies such as has a forgiving attitude when they catch an employee Internet shopping – if it wasn’t for people like them they might not be as successful as they are.

We had a quiet thanksgiving at my two sisters’ house (don’t think of the Bouvier Sisters). Also attending was my two sons Rocky and Adam, and Adam’s girlfriend Tiffany.

On Black Friday we did not help make Friday Black.. but helped our house turn into a lot or red, green, and some white, and whatever other colors as we put up our Christmas decorations and put up our new Christmas tree we bought last New Years Day on sale… it worked.

Saturday, we went to Thanksgiving Phase 2. Thelma, Anna’s sister-in-law had a belated Thanksgiving spread. Thelma’s husband, Anna’s brother, drowned in 1988. They had three daughters and two of the daughters became fruitful and multiplied so Thelma and Tommy’s family mushroomed into a fair size group.

Thelma’s nephew (her sister’s son) Donnie from Alabama was invited and came. Donnie was a quiet shy type of man. After we had eaten we gathered out on the front porch and Donnie entertained us all with his banjo. The weather was nice and the music was good. A day later I thought Donnie came from ‘Alabama with a banjo on his knee.” Why didn’t I think of that when we were all together? I can hear the spontaneous laugh in my mind now. Well, next year I am going to make sure to hint that Thelma have another after Thanksgiving Thanksgiving Dinner and invite Donny. Then I will spring that wise-crack. Timing is everything.

Yesterday we had an old friend over. Her husband died about a dozen years ago, now we swap dinner invitations, in a leap frog fashion. And, after a couple of hours of casual pleasant conversation she left and as soon as she backed out of the drive way and drove out of sight we sprung into action… quickly got in the car and did some Christmas shopping ourselves… Help make Sunday blacker.

Sometime yesterday while our dinner guest was here my left foot began to hurt. I think it may have been hurting before then, maybe even up to two days earlier, but yesterday it became a pronounced pain, enough to make me limp with pain. And it seemed to get rush as the day went on. The pain in below my outward ankle on my left foot. It hurts more to put my weight on my heel than the front pad.

The only thing I can figure is when I brought up the big heavy box that had the new 7’ tree (with lights) I may have strained my foot on the steps trying to lift if from step to step. But I am not positive how it came to be. I just know it hurts. But it does seem better today. Anna put a pain relieve pad, sort of like a stickum. I plan to take it easy today.

If you are reading this at your desk at work, Happy Cyber Monday!

Sunday, November 26, 2006

Samuel DeBarris Lance (1846-1929

Samuel DeBarris Lance was born in North Carolina and mved to Union County (Blairsville), Georgia. His mother was Rebecca Hunter, who was the daughter of John Hunter (1775-1848), who is the earliest Hunter ancestor that I know for sure.

The Lance family was the kind of family that movies and books are made from. For instance, this is what I have on Debarris's father, Samuel R. Lance:
A friend of his (Samuel R. Lance), whose name has long since been forgotten, was to have a duel with a fellow from Union County, and as fate would have it he became sick, not being able to fill the appointed date. Dueling custom has it that if you are sick you have the right to name a replacement, so Samuel Lance, being noted as a fighting man, was chosen to fight in his stead. He came to Union County by request, to uphold the honor of a friend, fought the duel and won, leaving his adversary, against whom he had no malice, lying motionless up the ground.
He came to Union County in the Spring of 1839. He returned to Buncombe County and told his brothers and moved his family one year later.
August of 1870 - Sam Riley Lance; his sons James Debarris, Andrew, and John; and his son-in-law John Frady did call on Joseph Henson, and as the indictment in court did say, "Fight, whoop, holler, and curse, and attempt to go into the house of said in a violent and tumultuous manner" because of what he said about one of the members of the family.

And this is what I have on Samuel DeBarris:
Samuel had naturally curly hair.
In the Civil War he was wounded in the line of duty. He was holding a stallion during drill and was kicked in the right leg. The wound never entirely healed.
As a young man he traveled to Missouri with his friend and companion, Sid Wright. He staked out a claim for many acres of land, which he never returned to farm.

Here is something I find confusing. Based on the information I have DeBarris was only 19 years old when the Civil War ended in 1865. In the Civil War he was in DeBarris Co. A, a 6th Regiment CSA under Robert E. Lee. With his unit named DeBarris one would think it was named after him. If so, what an early age when that came to be, probably 17 or 18.

That is one of the things I have on my to-do list, is check out Samuel DeBarris Lance's military records to see if everything I have jives with the real facts.

DeBarris married twice had 17 children by his first wife and none by his second wife.

His brother, the Rev. John Henry Lance was beheaded for preaching against moonshine in those North Georgia Mountains, but that will be another posting.

Tech Rape

Not too many blog entries ago I told of a short-lived Thanksgiving tradition of ushering the freshman Tech – Georgia game at Grant field.

One of the comments was from somebody who hinted something to effect that she was glad I had fond memories of Tech and hinted she may have had some bitter memories of Tech.

We had a flurry of emails going back and forth. One on of her notes she said MHS 59, which I interpreted to have graduated from Marietta High School in 1959. I was right. We knew of each other in high school. She was a year ahead of me but remembers me and I remember her.

She now lives in the southwest part the U.S.

We caught each other up on news of our old high school mates, who is sick, who died, etc. It is an enjoyable chatting or gossiping we are doing.

At Georgia Tech when she was a student she was raped by a guy in a Fraternity. And she has a blogsite about that rape – actually, more than one rape, she has a bone to pick (no pun intended). So, if you want to read about her Tech Rape and the unjust of it all, click here or you may want to go her lastest blog creation, if so click here.

Saturday, November 25, 2006

How Much Is That Doggie in the Window?

We are considering buying or rescuing ourselves a dog for Christmas. Our last dog, Brandy, was a large dog, part Husky and part German Shepard. I think we would like a smaller one this time.

What breed of small dog is noted for its temperament and being friendly – yet a good watch dog?

Any suggestions?

Friday, November 24, 2006

Progress by Leaps

With the below tin-type picture of Maude Wright Guffin (1895-1975) as a focal point of the rapidly progressing world we live in. Her image was processed on a little rectangle of tin, which was common in the late 1800s and early 1900s.
Her father was born in 1857 when photography was in its infant stages.
I mentioned we had just returned from Disney World when we attended her funeral. We rode the Monorail while in Disney World. Then the monorail system was big, silent, and swift. I was amazed. I rode the Monorail system several times in Jacksonville, Florida, this past summer and thought nothing of it.
Back to Maude and her funeral. Our oldest son Rocky was born about 6 weeks later. At that time the computer was in its infant stage. A personal computer in a home was not even a consideration.
Now look. It is generally accepted and expected that you do have a personal computer. Instead of people asking you do you have a computer so they can send you an email they ask you your email address assuming that of course you have a computer.
And the tin-type picture has been replaced by electrodes stored in digital format in our computers.
What is next? Never mind, it is beyond our imagination.

Maude Wright (1895-1975)

Here is another tin-type picture.

Maude is/was Anna's great aunt. She married Lem Guffin in 1916. They had no children. I remember going to her funeral right after we returned from Disney World.

Thursday, November 23, 2006

A Not-so Modest Proposal

I saw a funny blog post this morning. Of course, Funny is in the eyes of the beholder. Go check out the Modest Proposal entry by Rocky.

If you looked at this blog earlier this morning you may have seen an entry similar to this one. And then if you checked back in a few minutes you may have noticed this similar blog entry not there. Now, you check back again and here it is again. Now you see it, now you don't. Now it is back again? What gives? Are you nuts or what?


Wednesday, November 22, 2006

A Short-Lived Thanksgiving Tradition

For a two or three years in a row, when I was in the Boy Scouts, Troop 132, on Thanksgiving Day we ushered the Freshman University of Georgia and Georgia Tech game in Atlanta.

Mostly we would stand watching the line and if we saw someone with a good camera we were to report it to the authorities. It was more or less a free ride to get in the game and see all the excitement of college football.

Getting there each year we went through Fraternity Row and I remember amazed that these students could be so free… holding signs out their windows saying “The Hell With Georgia” or “The Hell with UGA”. And students actually standing out front of their frat houses opening drinking beer!

Also, all the Tech Freshman at that time had to wear a little yellow Georgia Tech hat with the Tech “T” on it and the bill turned up which also said the famous “The Hell With Georgia.”

Our Thanksgiving dinner those years was a famous Hot Dog at the Varsity Drive-In (World’s Largest) that we would get after the game when our scout master would take us there. I think one year we may have went to the famous Yellow Jacket Drive-In.

The Yellow Jacket finally went out business. I remember there was a black curb hop there famous for citing all the flavors of ice cream they offered. He could cite it frontward or backwards. That was the thing with the black car hops, the better they entertained, the better the tips. That could be demeaning.

A Thanksgiving Story

If I have told you this high hunting adventure before please stop me.

I have told a few people here and there this story and I am not quiet sure if I blogged it or not. I went back to check my blogs for last year and the entire month of November 2005 for Chicken Fat and Chickenfat is missing, so I don’t honestly remember.

One Thanksgiving about four or five of us teenagers met someplace very early in the a.m. and headed to White, Georgia, to hunt.

On one of our outings we discovered a series of dirt country roads near White, Georgia, that seem to have went on and on.

We had a plan. Have you ever been out on a lone dark road and seem to see deer and rabbit dart out in front of you? Sometimes they are stunned by the headlights and freeze.

We had one of Larry’s father’s old beat up junk cars from his used car lot. The plan was for a person to ride on each front fender, with a shotgun, and if we see a rabbit or a deer or anything else that moved shoot it. We didn’t know much about hunting, nor much about physics… shooting a kicking shotgun while on a fender? A no no.

First we found an old deserted house and stopped in and built a fire in the fireplace to sat around and tell high school gossip, who was romancing with whom, and it was dark with the fireplace flickering lights onto the walls and ceiling, so that probably called for a few ghost stories that I vaguely remember.

After a while of idle talk we wanted to try out our new theory of shooting live things from the fender and went out on the dirt roads. God watches out for drunks and fools, and we qualified under the fool category. We did not see one live thing from the headlights. We rode mile after mile on the dirt roads. Nothing.

We decided to turn around and go back as it began to get light.

The first house we passed a young black man in overalls was out by a chopping block skinning a rabbit. He got his.

When we entered White, Georgia, City Limits we had a flat.

We checked the trunk and there was no spare.

We sat there in the near dark trying to figure out what to do. We were sitting on the edge of a turn in to a service station. Maybe we were in luck. We would just have to wait until they opened…. If they open on Thanksgiving.

As it got lighter we saw across the street was a rock house. I noticed through the years there are plenty of rock houses in that area and also the Calhoun and Dalton area. Behind the rock house a little path led up a little hill to an outhouse.

Larry said he was going to go take a dump in the outhouse. We advised him against it. Larry loved to take dumps in outhouses. He always had. He said the family probably wasn’t up yet and he slipped up, crouched down and from bush to bush and into the outhouse.

We were sitting there talking about something and I noticed movement. I looked up and a lady in a housecoat was walking up the path to the outhouse. She had a magazine or a newspaper section with her. I told everybody to “LOOK!!!”

We all were screaming in fits of laughter when the woman opened the door of the lighthouse.

Larry bounded out trying to pull up his pants with one hand and scratch his forehead with his other hand. Larry, every time he got embarrassed would scratch his forehead to cover his face.

He ran down the hill with the woman looking behind him with her mouth agape.

Larry jumped intothe driver’s seat started the car and off we went, flat or no flat. He ruined the tire and the rim. We made it to another service station/store down the road.

When the store opened we bought a used tire on a used rim, which just happened to be the car’s size for $5.00. Our last $5.00 pooled together.

We got back on the road and about 2 miles down the road we ran out of gas.

“Now what?” We asked.

I forgot our logic process on how we came up with the next decision. I would hitchhike home about 50 miles away. At home I would get my car and drive over to Larry’s parents’ house and slip Larry’s car out of the driveway and leave mine there. I think the idea behind that is that they might be furious if Larry came home but didn’t come inside. And the reason to leave my car and take his car is that Larry said he had a wad of money hid in his car.

As planned, I hitchhiked to my parents house. My parents were having Tom and Mary Jo (see blog just a day or two ago) over for Thanksgiving dinner. I quickly shook hands and left in my car, saying I didn’t have time to eat.

I went over to Larry’s and parked my car behind their garage and slipped Larry’s out. I saw Larry’s older brother run out just as I was hitting the street.

This was before the I-75 went through this area. The main road to that area was the 4-Lane, aka Highway 41, aka, Cobb Parkway.

I got 30 miles up the road near Cartersville and ran out of gas.

“Now what?”. I had no money. There was money hid in Larry’s car but I had no idea where at.

Incidentally, about the same place I ran out of gas is about the same place Anna’s nephew Neal walked across the street and was ran over and killed about 15 years in the future.

I started walking north, towards where I left them, which was about 20 miles away.

I was walking north backwards, facing the south with my thumb out. What I did not realize and they did not either, they were doing the same thing, except the opposite. They were walking backwards thumbing down the southbound lanes. We were almost even.

I forgot if it was me or it was them, but somebody saw the other and we all got back together and walked back down to Larry’s car.

That is synchronicity!

What would happen if we both had gotten rides, or either I or they got a ride? We would have missed each other.

I would have wounded up, in time, back in White, Georgia, looking at an empty car. And they would arrived at Larry’s house only to discover my car instead of Larry’s car which they didn't have the keys to.

As I said, the Lord looks after fools and drunks. We had reason to be thankful we were fools.

I have no memory of retrieving our guns or the old car, but I’m sure we did.

Tuesday, November 21, 2006

Chaney House built ca1856

This is the Chaney House. It was built about 1856 by or for Andrew Chaney.

It is in the southwestern part of the outskirts of Marietta. When Sherman came to town nearby was a “last hurrah” kind of battle line before Sherman and his Yankee soldiers attacked Atlanta and burned it.

While Sherman occupied this area for a week or so the Chaney House was the headquarters of Ohio General John M. Schofield.

Shortly before I took these pictures I read the book GHOST RIDERS by Sharyn McCrumb, which tells of the Civil War in North Carolina, which in my opinion is as good as the other North Carolina Civil War book COLD MOUNTAIN which was published near the same time. GHOST RIDERS tells of several battles and skirmishes of General Schofield’s men.

I am glad I took these pictures. If I had waited a year I couldn’t have. Progress came in and changed it all. The house is still standing, but it is surrounded by a subdivision of newly built houses. There is no longer wooded sprawling acres. I don’t know if the well has been bulldozed away or not, but either way, it an’t what it used to be.

Thanksgiving for the Birds

Because of a busy Thanksgiving schedule I will feed the birds today. I will put out sunflower seed in bird feeders, scratching feed on the ground, along with peanuts and kernels of Indian corn, and to top it off with a delicious lard and wild berry mix, with just hint of peanut butter suet hanging from the trees.

I wish I could find a place that sells suet bars shaped to resemble partially rotten rats – I think that would add a little gala and festive to the occasion.

Will the birds turn up their beaks at my spread because it is not the actual Thanksgiving Day? That remains to be seen. If they check their journal scratching for last year they will see I did the same thing and they ate it all and were clattering, squawking, and cheeping for more.

And the hawk that looms high in the top of the oak tree enjoyed it too. I could tell by the little bloody fragments of gray squirrel hair scattered here and there in the back yard.

Monday, November 20, 2006

Uncle Tom

This is my mother's oldest Tom. By these pictures I think he was something of a ham when there was a camera in front of him.

His wife MaryJo was a ham also. They loved to pose for photographs.

The internet and blogging was after his time. He died in 1979, but I thought I would do him a favor I'm sure he would appreciate: Plaster his posing face to all in the world who stumbles across it.

By the way, the line of brothers and my father Tom is the 3rd from the right (can't you tell by the pose?) and my father, who has always been shy in front of a camera is on the far right.

Thanksgiving Week

This is the first day of Thanksgiving week. Or on some calendars yesterday was the first day of this week. It is your choice.

This week will be the most traveled week in the U.S. for the year. Everybody wants to find themselves home among relatives and memories; And of course food; And of course football games. Whoever heard of family Thanksgiving day with family gathered around if the TV isn't on playing football? It is the American way.

Also, it is the week that officially ushers in the Christmas season. Proof of that will be at the tail end of the NYC Macy’s Thanksgiving Parade Thursday morning when Saint Nick himself will officially open the joyful season. Ho Ho.

Retailers have jumped the gun. Already I notice in discount department Christmas music being played and Christmas decorations here and there. And most importantly, the cash registers singing jingle bells.

This year the larger stores, like Wal-Mart are tossing aside political correctness for sales correctness. They were somewhat boycotted last year because they tried to avoid using the word Christmas or Christ and tried out "Holiday Season". It didn't work.

The Christians are a little greedy - they want the whole season of 30 days plus to be taken in the honor of the birth of their belief.... and it is just tough if you don't share the same belief - what right do you have to believe otherwise anyway?

It is also the week many households will decorate their homes in Christmas decorations. We are planning our moves now. I will bring Christmas decorations up from the basement. Also we will get to try out a new artificial tree that already has it lights on it. When we bought it last year after Christmas (it was marked down) the cashier told us to just bring it back if it didn't work. Since then the place have went out of business. We hope we will have our decorations up by Sunday.

The family at the end of the street – the lady always seems a little hyper to me - strives every year to have her decorations up first. One night last week I noticed Christmas lights on the outside of their house beaming electric happiness.

Across the street, Bob and his family never took down their outside lights, from the time they put them up several years ago. I almost wish that they turned their lights on weeks ago to beat the hyper lady.

Happy Thanksgiving week!

Sunday, November 19, 2006

Head of or Back of the Line?

Many times I have wondered if I am invisible. Sometimes I think I just don’t have the luster that attract human eyes. People look either through me or over or around me.

In the past 4 days in various occasions people have broken in line ahead of me four times. True! Four times I have been standing in line and people have broken in front of me and acted normal… not aggressive, just casual normal.

However, Karma may have tried to jump in and make things even. Today at a Crafts Store four times people thought I was the head of the line. But each time I was not in a line. They just thought I was in line.

I was waiting on Anna each time near the area where clerks measure and cut the yards of material. Once I was standing in the middle of the floor, but near the counter I just mentioned and this lady came up and got behind me. I stood there in a daze like I usually do and watched people. When the people at the counter said “next” and I didn’t make a move the lady behind me asked me was I in line and I said, “What line?”

Then I moved around and faced another way so people would not think I was standing in line for the counter again and another lady came and got behind me. I moved to another part of the room and another lady came by and stood behind me. I politely moved a little bit and told the lady I was no line.

Then one of the store clerks told me “the line should form over there.” And I said, “Good, then I will stand over here!”

June Bug

Speaking of nuts and the Postal Window:

A little short scene on this week’s Office reminded me of one time I was working as a window clerk at the Post Office. A clerk nicknamed “June Bug” who normally didn’t work the window, but at times, when we where short handed he was to relieve, that was part of his job.

June Bug was a strange person. He love to hit people with spit balls, or rubber band propelled tiny objects. He also had a way saying the improper thing at the wrong, or right time. For instance, if a supervisor threatened to write him up he would grab his crouch and say, “Write this up.” Or maybe the supervisor would threaten to send him home, again he would grab his crouch and say, “Send this home.” He was good at that – picking the right word… he had his own style.

Another one of his favorite expressions at inappropriate times would be “Do you choke your chicken?” Of course that was to the men folks. He seldom spoke to the female postal workers. Although I remember once he had a crush on a rural route carrier and would go out to her route and follow her, I suppose he was stalking her. She complained to management and they spoke to him, which he denied and told them to “stalk this”. He got the message, he quit following her.

One of the times he relieved, his station was next to me. I remember he was waiting on a good looking lady and after he sold her stamps or mailed her package or whatever, she thanked him and he coughed, putting his hand over his mouth, and I heard him very quickly say, with the words running together say, “Igotabigdick-wanttosuckit?”

The lady’s eyes opened and she said, “Pardon me?”

June Bug said he was just coughing, excuse him.

She said, “No, you said something not very nice, would you please say that again.”

June Bug’s face turned red and he said he just coughed.

The lady said she was going to report him but I never heard any more about it.

However, about a week later, another clerk, told me that June Bug said the exact same thing to another good looking female customer and she stormed off.
Was June Bug a Silver-Tongue-Devil or what?

One time June Bug picked up a friend at the Atlanta Airport and after his friend got off the plane he was helping his friend with his baggage and the police surrounded them. The bag he was holding for his friend was loaded with dope. The authorities arrested June Bug and his friend. They were released on bond.

The postmaster fired June Bug for actions unbecoming a Postal Employee. There is an article 14 (I think it is), which states that postal employees must have good moral character and live their lives within local and Federal law. If you go beyond the its limits you can be terminated.

Which June Bug has been guilty of actions unbecoming a Postal Employee long before he was caught with dope, but since the reason cited was his run-in with the law with the dope, the postmaster may have jumped the gun.

Later, June Bug was looking for a job since he had no Postal job. The job he applied for the management called the Postmaster for a reference and the Postmaster told why he fired him.

Uh-oh. Since he was not proven guilty yet, June Bug had grounds to sue the Postmaster, which he did, for $6,000,000. How he and his lawyer came up with the six million figure dollar figure I have no idea.

Before June Bug went to trial somehow his lawyer proved that he knew nothing about his friend bringing in luggage full of dope. The charges were dropped and the Postal Service gave him his job back. I don’t think he got six million bucks in the bargain, probably much to his lawyer’s disappointment.

June Bug’s father was a station manager at the Post Office before he retired. His father stopped one of my ex-co-workers on the street one day and asked how his son was doing. My co-worker told him if he was his son’s supervisor he would have to fire him.

His father died a few weeks ago. I suspect the body will be turning reguarly.

Tyson Sisters

This is my grandmother with her two sisters. The one of the left is Anne, then Octavia (Tade), and my grandmother Minnie Tyson Hunter is on the far right.

Notice how Tade is looking disapprovingly at Minnie? I think Tade did that a lot: look at Minnie in a judgmental way. I wonder why.

Saturday, November 18, 2006

Postal Window Clerk Memory # 217

When I was a Postal Window clerk I from time to time would wait on a nut. I guess that is to be expected. There are nuts out wandering around and they do business and social activities where they have to interact with people, which the people they interact with know before the interaction gets too involved, they are dealing with a nut an back off.

But is rare to be talking with two nuts at the same time.

Once, when I was a window clerk an elderly couple were next. I asked them to come up to my window, which they did, in an unsure manner. They looked to be in their late 60s or 70s. The man wore worn overalls and the woman had on a flowerily dress. They had a serious look of their face.

Somebody knocked down their mailbox the man said. They didn’t even stop the woman said. The man added if he had knocked down someone mailbox he said it would have been an accident and he would stop and offer to replace it. The woman told me whoever hit their mailbox and knocked it down didn’t stop.

They said they would like to see some examples of regulation mailboxes. I had a Postal issued publication that illustrated different types of mailboxes and had the legal dimensions, minimum and maximum, and showed an illustration how long the post should be from ground to the box. Of course, that would be about the right height for a carrier to be able to deliver the mail from his car window and move on.

Some of the illustrations had big red X’s on them which was saying that was the WRONG way.

The elderly couple studied each picture and talked among themselves and finally focused on one standard looking mailbox and the man pulled out his wallet and said, “We’ll take that one.”

I said we didn’t sell mailboxes you would have to buy them at a hardware store or someplace that sold mailboxes.

He said, “Well how come you have a catalog?”

Are they real or are they joking? Maybe they both are getting to be senile about the same time.

I explained that it wasn’t a catalog it was just showing Postal regulations on the requirements for a mailbox.

They looked at me like the didn’t believe me, but if I didn’t want to sell them a mailbox that was my right, it was a free country.

Then, the man said if they go down to the hardware store and buy a mailbox and a pole how long would it be until we sent someone out to put it up.

Again – are they serious?

We don’t put up mailboxes, that is your responsibility I told them.

He said he could put it up, he had dug many of a hole for a post for fences in his time, so he didn’t mind.

They walked away talking about their next approach to the problem of no mailbox.
I wonder if they ever came up with the proper chain of solutions.

Friday, November 17, 2006

Blog Talk Spoken Here

I was informed tonight that the way my blog is set up I am restricting everybody but google users.

I didn't know that. I think that is the way it defaulted itself when I was setting it up.

I fixed that little problem. I changed it to "Every One" (or something similar).

Now you know

From Uncle John's Bathroom Calendar, page a day:

John James Audubon. The National Audubon Society was founded in 1905 in his honor, which is a wildlife conservation society.
Audubon painted pictures birds. He shot them and posed the corpses with wires in life-like poses in order to paint them.

George Washington's family moto was Exitus acta probat, "The end justifies the means."

The Wright Sisters

I don't really know if they are sisters are not. I just thought it was a catchy title.

This was copied from a tin-type picture. You can see a little dent or a scratch on the metal.

The young ladies names are Gene Lee and Lula Wright.

I cannot find their names indexed in my genealogy program. The closest I have is a great great aunt of Anna named Annie Lou Wright who was born about 1870 - which, would make her a young lady when tin-types were still being used. I can see that a name Annie Lou would be nicknamed Lula. She had eleven siblings with these sisters' names: Ellie, Effie, Debie, and Odella.

Notice the last name Odella? The picture of Gene and Lula was with the same batch as one with Odella.

Thursday, November 16, 2006

Wait! I got One!

Wait! I got one!

I forgot if I have mentioned it on my blog or not but lately I have noticed that at times my left thumb will move involuntarily or my left foot will do the same, move, like keeping rhythm.

My father had the same happen to him, which my sister said was a bad flu shot reaction. And so did my mother – she had about the same symptoms but she had Parkinson’s disease.

My little body jerks doesn’t seem that serious. It does its jerks quietly and only when unnoticed. It usually happens when I am watching TV or listening to someone talk to me.

As soon as I notice the left parts of my body moving the movements suddenly stops, as if it just caught itself being bad.

Naturally, since it may be Parkinson’s Disease, or whatever Daddy might have had, I would like to get an early medical opinion of what is going on.

Last week I had an appointment with a neurologist. He gave me various little tests with the hammer and knee flex, touch my nose with my eyes closed, and little tests lie that. He said he could see nothing wrong.

But to make sure, he lined me up an appointment to have an M.R.I. later this month.

I was telling a friend about all this via email that of my left thumb and foot movements and the doctor couldn’t find anything wrong.

He said, ‘Well, you can always buy a harmonica and take up the blues.”


I started off on four or five different topics this morning and each time stopped and deleted what I had put down. Today I am empty.

I’ll let you know if I come up with anything.

Wednesday, November 15, 2006

Elder's Artistic Touch

I keep harping about what a good artist I think Will Elder was with satirical comics and magazines, such as MAD.

He was responsible for new standards, or format, in that type of publication. He is just about the first one to have little side jokes all over the story that had nothing to do with the story. I think he called them “sniglets” but could be wrong.

Here is a good example he did in a MAD comic book story lampooning Mandrake the Magician, here as Manduck the Magician. You may have to double click the picture to enlarge it. See in both panels the two men in the bottom right corner. It the first panel one man is pick pocketing the other man. And in the next panel the pick pocketed man is falling because the pick pocketer instead of pulling out the man’s wallet accidentally pulled off his prosthetic leg.

Also, there are other little gags that have nothing to do with the story line, for instance the feather on an extension arm tickling the armpit of Luther when he lifting barbells – giving the feeling of a Marx Brothers whimsical environment; and also the man with a zipper on top of his head – why a zipper?

Big Wheel Keeps Rolling

The little tyke here is me. I look like the kind of kid that would be found playing around the rubble of a bombed building in Europe in WWII picking valuables off corpses.

The lady beside me is Ruby, a neighbor. My family and I lived in the Clay Homes and Ruby lived across the street behind a neighborhood store her husband Pete owned.

Pete was 25 years older than Ruby. Pete was also a proud member of the KKK.

Ruby was Pete’s second wife. Pete’s first wife died. He had one daughter from his first marriage and he and Ruby had two daughters. The first wife’s daughter had a son named Tommy that I ran around with from that point until he parted for the Navy after graduation.

Although Tommy lives in town we have not ran into each other since he departed for the Navy in 1960. When his mother-in-law died I went to the funeral hoping to see him and his wife Linda and maybe talk old times. But that very day, before the funeral he and Linda had a blow-up of a fight and they both wanted a divorce. Neither went to the funeral.

Life just keeps rolling along.

Tuesday, November 14, 2006

William D. Petty (1834-1917)

William D. Petty was the brother of my great grandfather. He was born in Fannin County, Ga., and died in Murray County, Ga. He and his two wives are buried in the same plot in Sumac Presbyterian Cemetery in Crandall, Murray County.
He was a census taker for the 1880 Census. At church he was known to get there early on Sunday mornings to get the pot belly stove going. It is also said he loved to sing in church and knew just about every verse word by word... and loved to use that skill in a positive way.

With the dark beard and CSA uniform at first glance, he reminded me of General Nathan Forrest.


Sunday Anna gave me a list with a few items on it and I went to Publix.

At the checkout counter I overheard the cutesy teenage blond tell a cutesy teenage brunette sack-person that she couldn't talk because every time she did .. and she mumbled something that sounded like "my toes come off." The brunette said, "Your toes come off?"

Yeah! That is what I thought she said too.

Slower she said, "I can't talk, every time I talk my TOTAL is OFF."

Now, that makes sense.

I chuckled to myself and picked up my sack of the several items and walked out. When I got home Anna said I bought sour cream instead of cottage cheese. I looked and the list plainly said cottage cheese.

One chuckle backfire.

I better keep my mind on what I'm doing or I might lose my toes too.

Monday, November 13, 2006


Here I sit at home by the telephone waiting for it to ring. I am waiting for it to ring because I am in the market for several products and services.

I might need new vinyl siding. Maybe somebody will call me and tell me they will have a representative in my neighborhood tomorrow giving free estimates.

Or, I could use some cash. Maybe a fly-by-night mortgage company will call me and tell me they have some good news – that they have record low interest rates on second mortgages,

Or possibly somebody might call and tell me I won a free trip to wherever I pick from about 10 prime vacation spots.

It is possible a satellite company will call me offering me a deal of a life time with this week only free installation, the same deal they offered last week.

According to our caller I.D. a company calls from Las Vegas between one and three times a day – maybe they will call back with a deal I can’t refuse.

I am so lucky all these telephone solicitors are kind enough to call me to offer me such good deals. I don’t know how I could shop without them.

We Are What We Eat

Last week Anna checked the freezer department of our refrigerator down stairs to see if we had enough room for a turkey (upcoming Thanksgiving).

She found a ten pound sack of chicken-ice.

What happened weeks ago she put on the grocery list chicken thigh and leg quarters, on sale for a cheap amount per pound, I forgot what. When I went shopping, buying what was on the list I found the chicken on sale that she listed: Ten pound packages of fresh chicken. So, I bought a sack, carried them home and plopped them in the freezer and didn’t think anymore about it.

Martha Stewart, I'm not. Being fresh and most, they all froze together in one big solid lump.

This weekend we thawed them. The lump thawed into ten chicken quarters. I cooked six on the grill and Anna cooked four in the pressure cooker. We had chicken for lunch yesterday and chicken soup for dinner last night.

I will have chicken soup today for lunch and so will Anna at work. And tonight we will each have another quarter.

We are eating so much chicken that….. aawwwkkkk!

Cousins & Friends Meet for 1st Time in Macon Co.

This is Bessie holding her middle son Jerry. Jerry and Bessie are newly discovered relatives of mine. Jerry is about my age. Jerry was brought up in Birmingham. Bessie now lives in Florida and Jerry lives in Tennessee with his wife, who is a school teacher.

We met them at a Ray Genealogist Family Reunion held in Franklin, NC., several months ago. That is same trip we met Bird and the Aging Hipster.

As I typed this it occurred to me that Jerry's wife is a school teacher, so is Bird and the Aging Hipster.

See how things just sort of flow on their own? And not only that, but do you see how things come in 3's? And most of all, do you think Medicare covers lunacy?

Sunday, November 12, 2006

Now You See It, Now You Don't!

I spent 6 years of my life on this corner.

I just have a couple things to fuss about this morning for my Sunday Sermon:

At nearby Town Center Mall in Kennesaw they are beginning work on a new addition to attract new customers. According to the architect’s drawing the new addition will have a small home-town look: A Main Street with a row of unique stores and restaurants on each side. It will probably have a central fountain and park benches. According to the drawing it will take up a whole big segment of the parking lot. So, they are building something to attract more customers, but taking away their parking accommodations?

I spent from age one to age seven of my life in a low rental housing project called The Clay Homes. The Clay Homes had 135 apartments. Last year they relocated the dozen or so families living there and bulldozed The Clay Homes off the face of the earth.

Probably “relocated” is more polite than methods actually used.

This coming Tuesday morning the mayor of Marietta, Bill Dunaway will hold a ceremonial-meeting, at the corner of a certain two streets, which is the same corner our apartment unit was on, and will make an official act of creating a new park. After the apartment buildings were erased or deleted it looks like maybe between ten and fifteen acres of bare land, which will soon be a park.

I think the city fathers asked themselves, now which is less of an eyesore – rows of brick apartments with laundry hanging on lines or a beautifully landscaped park with possibly someday a statue of them?

The heck with the poor that lived there because they couldn’t afford any place else, we all have problems!

The name of the park will be “Meeting Park”.

What kind of meeting? Drug dealer meetings?

Saturday, November 11, 2006

Bryant Lane Roadside Shrine

Our street leads to Bryant Lane, which is two houses away. If you cross Bryant Lane you go into a little group of 12 new McMansions, which were sold and are selling for $700,000 each. That is outlandish. The builders finished up with the houses this past spring and have sold all but one or two.

Bryant Lane is a long street. If you go south on Bryant Lane for ½ mile you will be at a traffic light of Sandy Plains Road. If you go north on Bryant from our street one mile up is the intersection of Shallowford Road.

In the early spring, on a Tuesday evening I was getting ready to go to a genealogy meeting. I ate my dinner early and heard and felt the vibrations of a helicopter. As I was getting ready I had the 5 O’clock news on. On TV was a helicopter view of Bryant Lane, I recognized it instantly because of certain houses and side streets and the cluster of the bunch of new McMansions.

What happened was near the Shallowford Road end, a teenage girl had pulled out of a side street from her subdivision and an oncoming dump truck hit her car and she was pushed to the side. She was killed instantly. She was a high school senior, I think 17 years old. She couldn’t have had the driving experience to know what she could or couldn’t do.

She driver of the dump truck was not charged. She simply pulled out in front of him, and going down a steep hill of Bryant Lane he couldn’t stop. It was not his fault. He was carrying a load of topsoil or something to one of the McMansions a block from our house.

Later on the news and in the paper I learned that she was a cheerleader, female athlete, and in general one of the popular students at the local county high school.

I do not know but I think her parents live in the subdivision she was pulling out of onto Bryant Lane. And I think they now constantly watch over her road side shrine and keep it decorated in things they think she would enjoy.

I remember on the days around the 4th of July the little graveless plot was decorated in several little plastic red, white, and blue sparkling windmills. She had more than one medal hanging on the cross.

When it rains they cover the whole shrine with a clear plastic covering.

There are two streets that lead out of the subdivision. One is directly on the opposite end of the subdivision. I would think her parents choose the one she was killed at each time they come and go.

This is so sad for the parents to have to see this every day, but I think it gives them a form of continued closure.

The Wright Brothers

I keep telling you of my connection to the Wright Brothers.

Here are all the Wright Brothers lined up. A traveling photographer with a hanging backdrop dropped by the Wright family farm and offered to take their picture.

The first Wright brother on the left is Henry Gable Wright, Anna's great grandfather. The others are Bill, Dave, Jim, Kid, and Simon.

Friday, November 10, 2006

Doctor Appointments and Spilling the Beans

My neurologist appointment went well today – for me, not for him. He couldn’t find anything wrong with me. He is sending me a MRI in a couple of weeks – then, maybe he will get lucky.

He is a tall very positive guy that has a accent. I told my cardiologist I thought he was Australian. The cardiologist said he thought he was South African.

He came bounding in the room with a big smile. He noticed the book I put down when he came in was “Tommyknockers” by Stephen King. He asked me how did I like it. I told him I liked it but at times I would lose track and have to go back to see where I fell off the page. He asked me did I get to the part where the lady finds a space ship buried partly in the earth – I said, yes (that is near the beginning). Then he asked me another part and I said yes. Then he said asked me did I get to another part and I said, “No.”

Then the good doctor quickly summed up everything all the way to the end on what will happen in the book.

So much for the pleasure of reading a Stephen King book with a surprise around every corner.

Anna had two appointments. Her appointments went well. Her two doctors did not tell her how her book she is reading is going to end.

Thursday, November 09, 2006

We Might Be In A Rush Friday Morning

So, I thought I would type this now, save it over night and fire it into cyber space in the morning.

And you thought it was fresh off the press - see how looks can be misleading?

We have back to back doctors' appointments tomorrow. We have 3, maybe 4 appointments, one fairly early, so we will probably hit the floor running - or scampering.

One of the doctors' appointments is Anna with her general internal medicine doctor. Last week she learned she lost some bone density and she got an appointment with her regular doctor to go over her medicines and diet. I have mentioned this doctor she is going to today before, she is Eastern Indian and has signs in her examining room that requests you not ask about the ailments of other family members let them come themselves and don't ask about but one ailment, her time slot she is allowing for you is what you have an appointment for. Now we have a problem. Anna has been sick for a couple of days. Last night at bed time she felt terrible and was throwing up. So, she cannot mention she is sick to the doctor today?

A friend of mine called a mutual acquaintance, Harry, to see how things were going with him and he said not too good. Harry went hunting last week and coming back at a gasoline place a man asked him for a ride, the man said he had car trouble. To make a long story short, the first chance the man got, he drove off with Harry's car. In the car were two big coolers of dressed deer meat, his diabetes medicine, his house papers, and I forgot what else. Now, Harry is peeing pure red blood... and he is depressed. For about the past ten or so years Harry and his wife has had one terrible episode of bad luck after another.

I think the next time I am feeling blue I'll call Harry for a picker-upper. He is a constant reminder that things could be worse.

Rumbles of Ramble

This morning I walked 30 minutes on the treadmill and then went for a 22 minute run in the neighborhood. On TV I watched the Republicans squirm and out running I listened to Gladys Knight and The Pips on my MP3 player.

I think I always feel better when I run. It is just the motivation part that ties me down – I need a jump start sometimes.

And of course, I feel good that the Democrats are coming to power again. I just hope it doesn’t go to their heads like it did the Republicans. But it is nice to see the bully of the classroom (Bush) wake up and see that he is outnumbered.

All the upcoming newly elected Democrats coming to Congress and the Senate – I wonder if IMPEACH is on their mind? When the tables were turned it was on the Republicans’ minds when Clinton lied about a no-victim incident he was in. He lied under oath. George lied to the American people and the world about Iraq possessing Weapons of Mass Destruction…. And the lie has and keeps on having victims, thousands of them.

Anna and I had lunch at a Chinese Restaurant yesterday. The Restaurant has a giant aquarium running almost the complete length of the restaurant. If gives the illusion of two rooms, which lets one feel he or she is eating in a smaller room which makes the surroundings more personal, than if you were eating in a larger room, which you actually are.

The huge giant aquarium goes from the counter by your booth about half way to the ceiling. Another illusion is that it is not one big aquarium it is maybe four or five aquariums lined up, which is practical, if a kid threw his ball it would only break one tank, not flood the joint and whitewater them out into the street.

The aquarium beside us as far as I could tell only had two creatures in it. One, I think was a large Angel Fish. It has a big speckled horny looking umbrella looking thing spread out behind its’ head. It reminded me of a prehistoric creature that fought King Kong. Then on the floor of the tank was a huge Gila Monster looking thing that just lied there. It had a beak or mouth like an alligator. Although for a while I thought it wasn’t interested in us at all, it didn’t even look our way… but the more I looked at it the more I wondered if it was listening to us… it had its mouth opened, like stretching its ear cavity (like old people do) to hear us better.

The people in the next booth had a little fish that looked like a puppy in the face with a little black nose. It seemed to watch them and might have even been begging for table scraps.

Another thing about that group: I think it was a young husband and wife and a mother-in-law. The young husband had on a baseball cap. He asked for chop sticks. Somehow, a young Caucasian man with a ball cap on eating with chop sticks doesn’t seem natural.

I think the dog-face fish was impressed.

Frances & Helen c1947/8

My older sister Frances is on the left. She is with her friend Helen. They haven't seen each other in years. Fairly recently, They ran into each other at the funeral home visiting the family of a deceased (Carol Joe Clayton's mother) of the mutual neighborhood we lived in the 1940s.

They started talking about old times and giggled, cackled, and whooping laughing. Well, funerals are the living aren’t they?

Frances called me the other day saying she was thinking of taking up golfing. She called yesterday and said she bought a set of gof clubs.

Wednesday, November 08, 2006

The Buck Stops There

The people have spoken. Democrats control Congress now. And they might have control of the Senate also – its too early to call. Bush is surprised. He thought he had a mandate from the people to anything he damned well please. Well, the buck stopped at Rumsfeld. Donald Rumsfeld got the boot, less than a week before Bush announced there was no way he would fire Donald, he was there for the duration.

The news said Rumsfeld “stepped” down. “Stepped down” is different from being fired. Maybe Slippery George sidestepped his statement on a technicality.

Now, the kindler gentler Bush got word out for the new Democratic Congress members that he would like to meet with them and for them to work together – they were going to make a great team working together. That is less than 48 hours after he was saying how bad the Democrats are. But working together as a team? Isn’t that why all those Republicans didn’t get reelected?

Now that Bush ate a little humble pie he is saying, “Let bygones be bygones.” I wonder if he would have criticized John Kerry so unmercifully if JK had made that dumb statement after the election?

Me and My Timex Watch

I love my Timex Watch! It is digital, which just seems more exact. It has a stop watch, 30 lap things, timer, it tells the day and the date, and illuminates if I press the right button in the middle of night to see what time it is. What more could I want? I have had it about 5 or 6 years.

A few weeks ago the watch band broke so while looking for a new band I wore another Timex – this one is my heart monitor watch, which is also digital and it has a stop watch. But it doesn’t have an illumination button to press, or the day and date at a glance.

Several weeks ago when I began searching for a watch band a jeweler told me he didn’t have the band for that watch, he may have to order it, which, in the long run would probably cost more than the watch, I might as well buy a new one. I was horrified.

Then, if I bought a new Timex with the same features (which was $29.95) what would I do with the old Timex? No way! Surely, some store in the state of Georgia had the watch band I needed. I just needed to look.

So, for two weeks or more I have been carrying the watch on me whenever we went shopping. I checked with Wal-mart, K-Mart, and Target. It seems that Target came the closet to matching the style and size.

Then, yesterday, it was raining so I couldn’t work in the yard and I already voted so I decided to target Targets for my watch band.

After the second Target I visited I found one I was sure would fit. The lady behind the counter and I decided it would take a size 16, whatever that is. You take off the band and measure the little prongs that hold the axel-pin (my own name) and match it to a chart and come up with the number.

The lady had an accent. An Eastern European accent. She was pleasant to talk to but she was reluctant to try to install a watch band because she has never done it before. I told her I would walk her through it.

After several tries, it seems the little axel-pin would slip from the tiny little tool’s grasp. During this time she told me her husband had a heart attack and I told her about my heart attack and stroke. We were spending quality time while we were working.

I told her I was born in this county and used to, when I heard a northern accent it was rare, now, to hear foreign accents are not even rare, but to hear a Georgian accent like mine was rare. She understood what I was saying, and even felt for a moment what I was feeling about newcomers. I don’t resent newcomers, I just miss the Georgia laid back accent that used to be all around me.

She realized she wasn’t getting no place and went and asked the lady in the women’s clothing, if she would give it a try. She used to work in jewelry and a “nice person” the lady with the accent told me.

She came over and did her magic touch and in a few moment: Bingo! My Timex Watch was back in business.

It pays to shop around.

Wednesday Morning Armchair Politicking

Well, Sonny did.

Nationally it appears that Bush’s Iraq efforts had a negative effect but in Georgia had minus effect. Most of Georgians are sold on slick talking Republicans. In fact, they even gained a bit. Now, the two top offices in Georgia will be held by Republicans. Now, the Lieutenant Governor is held by a Democrat – which is the same Democrat that ran for Governor and lost.


I think Governor Sonny Perdue had more money to spend on the ad campaign. And although he may not be that charismatic he is a good actor – he came off like he is very easy going and charismatic.

And I think Mark Taylor threw too much mud. People thought of him as a negative mud slinging person. And I think he was too brutal to Cathy Cox in the form of negative campaigning. But, Cathy Cox got even by not doing anything. She may have made a difference if she had shown support of Mark, but she remained silent, which honestly, I don’t blame her.

And the charisma charm I think was why Casey Cagle (Republican) beat Jim Martin (Democrat). Casey is charismatic. Casey radiates a positive force. Jim Martin looks serious and depressed. This may be completely opposite of what they really are, but this is what I think their images are.

I think Jim Martin is more ethical than Casey Cagle – but he didn’t smile enough. He didn’t have that radiant beam about him. Which all reflects the belief people naturally like the good looking person most. It has been proven that good looking people, men and women, are offered more perks, more service, and more for the buck in general.

And you can not underrate the gullibility of voters.

Tuesday, November 07, 2006

Aviation History Before Aviation History

Leonardo Da Hunter? Or Orville or Wilbur Hunter?

Anytime I come across a claim for fame for me I am sure to let you know. I think I have proven that.

In this case, I am a relative to someone who is a relative who invented the flying machine before Wilbur and Orville Wright.

I am qualified to talk about first attempts of aviation. Anna and I took a walking tour with a park ranger at the Wright Brothers Memorial at Kitty Hawk or Kill Devil Hill – those two communities kind of blend together, but by the tour I learned all there is to know about early aviation.

One of my Hunter distant Hunter relatives in Union County, Georgia near Blairsville, married a person with the surname Dyer.

And that Dyer person was related to Micager Clark Dyer (1822 – 1891).

Micager Clark Dyer was working on aviation machines long before the Wright Brothers.

Here is what Patricia Davis Everett said about Micager in the Union County Heritage 1832-1994, article number 410:

He was considered a mechanical genius. He was believed to be the first person in Union County to have running water, using hollow trees and later metal pipes, by gravity flow. He invented and patented a perpetual motion machine, that he after he died, was offered $30,000, for it, but his son Mancil refused. He also built a flying machine, small, that was reported to fly. After his death Morena sold the model to Redwine Brothers in Atlanta.

In the weekly newspaper column Mountain Mists by Ethlene Dyer Jones, Mrs. Jones tells of the mechanical genius Micager Clark Dyer and said Highway 180 will be soon named the Micager Clark Dyer Highway. She tells M.C. was more or less a reclusive from his neighbors, he needed the privacy to work on his projects. She told some of his eccentric ways handed down through the family and also it is believed that the Redwine Brothers of Atlanta turned over the designs and calculations to the Wright Brothers who used it in their famous flight in 1903.

There’s history in them thar hills!

"I Would Vote But I might Get My Shoes Wet"

In Georgia, according to the polls, for the office of Governor and Lieutenant Governor the two Republican candidates lead and might not even need a run-off.

However, in the polling survey one factor was not figured in: The Rain Factor.

I know several Republicans or people who claim to be independent but always vote Republican – the several people have one thing in common. They fear the rain. Are they afraid of getting their hair or their yuppie clothes wet?

Either way, they do not go out in the rain. Which seems strange, it seems they all are gun-toting hero -wannabee-Minutemen who would have to fight in all kinds of weather.

Today it is raining.

If the several people I mentioned above is a good samplings of Republicans in Georgia in general, then the Democrats may have a chance.

Let us pray for a blast of thunderstorms. We need the rain.

Monday, November 06, 2006

Politicians' Favorite Sport

I remember back when I was a teenager listening to radio station WFOM-AM on election eve night. The same as today, politicians were throwing mud up until the last minute.

Back then they had some live commercials.

One politician who that night Monday night I was listening was talking about he knew for a fact that many cars of owned by business cronies of his opponent were over in the “colored section” or “Nigra section” of town handing out pint bottles of liquor to them people for their vote.

I wonder how he knew that for a fact if he was sitting in a radio station studio?

Things haven’t changed that much. The racist card is politically incorrect these days, but throwing slanderous mud is still the favorite sport.

Mama's Family again

My mother is standing beside her mother. Which it just occurred to me, in many of the pictures she stood beside her mother. Was her mother a protective or comfort zone?

She was always fighting with her father when he was alive, so maybe she ran to hide

Larry B & The Big Apple

I mentioned my old friend Larry B. before. He is one of the ones that stayed in Daytona Beach after we left and had the short-lived profession of pocketbook snatching.

Before Daytona we worked at the Big Apple Supermarket as carry out boys. The week after our Daytona trip was when I quit, which I will get to in another blog entry, but my friend Larry was let go months before Daytona – which I will get to now.

The Big Apple was one of the first Supermarket of the town. Shortly after The Big Apple came Krogers came. I think the A&P and Big Star were the first ones. Then, Kirk Brothers Supermarket was formed, which was locally own – I worked there too one time.

My first dealing with The Big Apple as an employer was when several of my friends worked there and off and on of them would need to be off a certain evening and pay me five or ten dollars to take their place… plus tips, not bad.

After several times of being a relief I was asked by the manager L.L. Thurmond to come to work, which I did.

We carry out boys only worked on Friday evening until they closed at 8:30pm and all day Saturday until they closed at 7pm.

We knew the tippers. You could spot a good tipper. It is just something about them. If nothing else was about we would carry out the dime tippers just to get out of the store, a quarter tipper we would try to maneuver ourselves to be in line to carry it out, a half dollar tipper was almost worth a fight, and a dollar tipper was worth a fight – all in good fun, of course.

And there was the little old grouchy lady Mrs. Stock who did not tip, but we enjoyed taking her groceries just to get to walk back and grab a quick smoke. She and her husband owned a tire company a block away.

After I worked there several months or maybe a year Larry B. got a job the same way I did – first by relieving carry-out boys.

One time at lunch on Saturday I found a place in the back store room behind some boxes that I could just plot myself down and rest. I didn’t get much sleep from the night before. I heard somebody come in the room. I eased my head around the corner of a box and saw that it was Larry B. I eased myself back quietly. I didn’t feel like getting in a long-winded conversation.

I kept hearing Larry do things. Step here and step there, I heard a box tear. Maybe somebody sent Larry in the back to get something and he had to tear open a box and bring something back up… I was going to tell him later how I hid while he was piddling around.

Then without warning: Whoosh!!! I was covered in powder Kool-Aid!

Larry gave out a Popeye laugh that he loved imitating.. if you ever seen the old black and white Popeye cartoons where the characters talked and mumbled to themselves you might remember Popeye laughed “Ka-Ka-Ku-Ku-Ka-Ka!”

Pink beads of Kool-Aid was all in my hair, all over my shirt, apron, and jeans. I brushed it all off and just left it there. I suppose some time in the near future somebody saw all the pink stuff and maybe either a empty Kool-Aid power container or several envelope lying on the floor and wondered what in the world happened.

Another mystery of things happening since Larry was hired and quit when he was fired.

At closing time on Friday and Saturday nights was usually a problem. None of us could leave until the last customer left the store. Being teenagers we had places to go – which, if we were waiting on an elderly couple who were slow pokes we may have looked impatient.

Larry B. had a date one night and he promised the girl he would not be late, they had to be someplace at a certain time. And there was the elderly couple taking their own good time.

Larry thought he would try to encourage them to leave and get in the next aisle and lob things over the top of the shelves at them to make them feel uncomfortable and hopefully start moving a little faster. He threw grapes, beans, towels, and anything else he could find that wouldn’t physically hurt them.

Larry was fired that night.

L. L. Thurmond was a kind gentle looking man. He was a naturally quiet person and not a loud mouth. To me, he was Mr. Thurmond instead of L.L.

One night I was rolling a group of grocery charts in and L.L. Thurmond was holding the door opened for me. From a car I heard Larry B. hollered, “Hey Rock!!!” And I gave a big window washing wave and then he hollered , “L.L.! You old bastard!!!” I thought I would crack up laughing. Nothing was said.

That’s about it.

There's No Business Like Show Business!

I read this morning that Ellen Burstyn has been nominated for an Emmy for her 14 second cameo part in “Mrs. Harris”. She was as surprised as anybody else.

Which got me thinking of Emmys, Oscars, and Tonys.

I bet in the history of the Tony awards non have been given to stage players in Tjuana, Mexico.

I read someplace that the most sought out stage show in Tjuana is an act – well, I wouldn’t call it an act, but lets say this “happening” that people pay good money to see that has a very short playing time. A donkey is on one side of the stage and on the other side is a man in tights. As the drum roll reaches it climax the man runs full force across the stage and plunges head first, head only, into the donkey's rectum. I would think then another person leading the donkey would walk him at different angles to show that the man’s head is totally submerged.

I don’t know the name of the event, but maybe “Into the Ass’s Ass” would have a good ring to it.

And I wonder if the man shaves his head and face or does he wear a stocking over his head? Does he hold his breath or breath while submerged?

And what if the head serves as an enima?

Does the man’s mother brag to her neighbors across the clothes line that her son is in show business?

I think the man and the donkey certainly deserve some kind of award, probably a Tony. And I don’t think you will be bored with a long list of people either of them would want to thank.