Wednesday, April 30, 2014

Al Feldstein, RIP

Eddie Hunter and Al Feldstein

I hated to  hear that Al Feldstein died yesterday, April 29, 2014, at age 88.

Al  was known for being a comicbook artist and editor of EC comicbooks.  He and his boss, publisher Bill Gaines, would meet every day and  between  them collaborated on a story.   Sometimes they hatched out a story for the comic TALES FROM THE CRYPT, or another horror comic, and another day it might be a story for one of their science fiction comicbooks.  They were producing a story a day.

EC comicbooks also was the publisher of MAD, which was the brainchild of Harvey Kurtzman, which I was a big fan of.   Because of public outrage EC dropped its horror and sci-fi comics, which made Al Feldstein unemployed.  However, about issue number 29 or 30 of MAD I noticed none of the old artists were contributing and the humor was a little more broad-based.  I looked at the magazine credits and saw that Harvey Kurtzman was no longer editor and in his place was Al Feldstein.

I disliked Al Feldstein, he single handedly dismantled the special brand of humor of MAD that I loved so much.  But, with him, the circulation improved - which is a bad thing, you no longer felt you were part of a secret group that only few could understand.  It was almost like a secret brotherhood. 

In the late 1990s at the DRAGONCON in Atlanta my son Adam and I went.  I came across a section that had Al Feldstein!   We talked.  No one else was in line to get anything signed or shake hands with him, like fans like to do.  He told me he retired and moved out west, Montana, I believe he said.  He told me he is doing western art now.  Art like bare rocky mountain s, formations,  and ridges,  Native-Americans and all that looked west.  He told me he was the editor of MAD for 30 plus years, which I already knew.  He was a very likable kind of person.  I'm glad I got to meet him.

During the time slot that I met him I was reading up on EC's history from various viewpoints .  I discovered Harvey Kurtzman was not such a shit-don't-stink kind of guy as I held him to be.  He alone ran MAD and at a point he demanded 55% of the ownership.  Bill Gaines fired him and more or less pulled Al out of the unemployment line and Al saved the publication  from going under.

I think Albert Feldstein  will rest in peace.

Varner's Reunion Poster

click on image to enlarge to read

Angry Cyst/Reality Blog

Angry Duck

I have been sick since Saturday night with some kind of virus.  

Today I feel a little better.  Good enough to keep my doctor's appointment for having a cyst removed.   The doctor, preparing for the procedure,  feeling around the cyst said it was angry.   Which translates to be "it is infected."  He gave me a local pain killer and dug in.    Later, as pus erupted out he told me the pus was angry.   He couldn't get all the cyst out because it was too infected, I mean angry.  After the hole he dug today heals over and the angry goes away, he will need to go back in and finish removing the cyst.   I suppose if he said the infection was pissed-off, it would mean the same thing wouldn't it?

Varner 2011 Reunion

I watched this 2011 Varner Reunion  again today and noticed a whole lot shaking going on, with the camera.  Also I cut off a lot of heads.  But it is what it is.  If you can, enjoy.

Tuesday, April 29, 2014

Monday, April 28, 2014

Welcome to Auraria!

WELCOME TO AURARIA, GEORGIA!   Population 0 or 1:  One of the things on  my bucket list was to go to Auraria, Georgia, and take some pictures.  I heard it was ghost town now.  It is a ghost neighborhood, it doesn't have enough dwelling to even be a ghost subdivision.    There are three houses, one is sort of big and decayed which symbolized the thriving  gold mining rush that was here about 1830.  This is where gold was discovered in Georgia, and the famous saying, "Thar's Gold in them thar hills!" originated.   For years gold was mined, hydra-stripping the hills and mountains.  Up until the gold was discovered  it was all Indian land, the Cherokee and Creek Nation.  They had a contract or a treatyto that fact.  Then, some crooked Indians leaders and Georgia Political leaders voided the treaty.  The Indians carried it to the Supreme Court and was ruled in their favor.  But President Andrew Jackson ignored their decision and had the Indians forcefully removed to reservations out west, mostly in Oklahoma.  President Andrew Jackson said  Chief Justice John Marshall could enforce their decision if he could.

This little ghost neighborhood was  the start of it all:  Gold in them thar Hills and  The Trail of Tears.

The old white house with all the junk is an interesting place.  I poked around and took some pictures.  When I got fairly close to the house I could hear someone singing old type songs, like "She'll Be Coming Around The Mountain When She Comes"  The music was not coming from a radio, but from someone's throat.  I heard on our visit to Dahlonega  that the Pickers visited that house recently.   It sure would have been easy pickings, all that junk out in the yard.  I think someone must live there and he doesn't like visitors.

Sunday, April 27, 2014

N Ga Cadence, Apr 26, 2014

We arrived early for the Bear in the Square Bluegrass Festival in Dahlonega.    I think it was to start at 10:am; we were there at 8am.  We had pleasant conversations with several of the bluegrass players who came from points all over Georgia, Tennessee, and Alabama.  While we were talking to a music group from Alabama I heard a distant roar.  It got louder and closer.  Then, I realized that roar had a distinct  rhythm.    It became louder and they rhythm was plainly a cadence.  Then the students from North Georgia College students materialized  singing  cadence.  We jumped out of the way and I pulled out my camera:  Lookie! 


The Political Season is here again.  
From the pages of TRUMP Magazine.

click on image to be able to read it.

Saturday, April 26, 2014

Varner 2010 Reunion Video

If you want to see the 2010 Varner Reunion you have three choices: 
(1) Look at the top one, which the music smothers out the rumble of everybody talking; 
(2) Look at the bottom one, which as far as sound, sounds like a noisy rumble, with everybody talking' or 
(3) watch both of them, visually they are identical.

Thursday, April 24, 2014

Time Flies, Reality Blog Continues -

Two medical related instances today.  At the doctor's offices, after making an appointment for next week for a procedure I walked back out into the waiting room to ride the elevator down.  Just as I entered the waiting room I saw one of the elevators closing.  My lucky timing!  I leaped and put my arm out to stop the door from closing.  The door did not do as I expected, it hit me with force and knocked me down but into the elevator.  Now, I have a big bruise on the back of my hand where I tried to block the elevator door.  Embarrassing.  I bet over 50% of the people there were looking at the elevator door when it slapped me down.    I know if I were sitting in the waiting room the noise of elevators doors would  get my attention.  If it was me watching, years ago,  I would have probably burst out laughing then.  Maybe this was a Karma pay-back thing.

Later I was at a pharmacy getting my prescription filled.  The lady hardly looked at me until she asked me for my birth date.  When I told her,  maybe she quickly calculated I am within arm's reach of being 73 years old - she looked up me for the first time.

I said, "Time flies!"

At the doctor's offices, after making an appointment for next week for a procedure I walked back out into the waiting room to ride the elevator down.  Just as I entered the waiting room I saw one of the elevators closing.  My lucky timing!  I leaped and put my arm out to stop the door from closing.  The door did not do as I expected, it hit me with force and knocked me down but into the elevator.  Now, I have a big bruise on the back of my hand where I tried to block the elevator door.  Embarrassing.  I bet over 50% of the people there were looking at the elevator door when it slapped me down.    I know if I were sitting in the waiting room the noise of elevators doors would  get my attention.  If it was me watching, years ago,  I would have probably burst out laughing then.  Maybe this was a Karma pay-back thing.

Later I was at a pharmacy getting my prescription filled.  The lady hardly looked at me until she asked me for my birth date.  When I told her,  maybe she quickly calculated I am within arm's reach of being 73 years old - she looked up me for the first time.

I said, "Time flies!"

when the elevator gave me a whipping I didn't realize at the time but I bumped my bare knee (I had on shorts) and skinned it.  Now, Willow, insists on nursing me back to health and  is trying to lick my wounded knee.

Daniel Killian, Ashieville Methodist Pioneer

Here is something I compiled several years ago and came across it again, yesterday.  My genealogy program, Family Treemaker calculated that Daniel Killian is my one half  fifth great uncle.  It is sort of interesting because it talks of the beginning of Methodism in Asheville, North Carolina.

From:  "The History of Old Buncombe County, North Carolina #415 Page 249

     Daniel Killian, born ca 1757 in Lincoln Co., N.C., was the
ninth child of pioneer Andreas Killian who arrived at Philadelphia in 1732 from Rhinish Palatinate.  There is a marker at St. Paul's Church Cemetery near Newton, N.C., that lists the twelve children of the pioneer Andreas Killian and states that he settled in North Carolina in 1747 near Newston.
     Daniel Killian married Osly Baker January 15, 1787, in Lincoln Co., N.C., with his brother Samuel Killian as bondsman.
     On January 19, 1784, Phillip Smith married Nancy Baker with Daniel Killian as bondsman.  In Bishop Francis Asbury's Journal, in which frequent mention is made of Daniel Killian from 1800 to1810, on Wednesday, October 26, 1803, in Buncombe Co., N.C., he says, "We called a meeting at Killian's...sister Killian and Sister Smith, sister is in the flesh...are both gone to their
award in glory."
     After his marriage and prior to 1790, Daniel Killian moved from Lincoln County to that part of Burke that became Buncombe County in 1791, settling on Beaver Dam Creek.  Asbury states states in October 1801 that Daniel Killian's residence near Buncombe court house.  Daniel Killian was in Burke Co. on the 1790 military census, and first entered land on Beaver Dam Creek in 1792.  He died Feburary 22 1830/6 and is buried in Asbury Memorial United Methodist Cemetery , Ashville, N.C.

From Chapter 23 of "Old Buncombe County, North Carolina:

     Bishop Francis Ashubry, sent by John Wesley from England to America in 1771 was the historic promoter of promoter of the Methodist movement in America. Known as the "Prophet of the Long Road," he was a circuit- riding preacher who rode almost 300,000 miles in 45 years of ministry throught the colonies from New England to South Carolina and back, traveling ofter on the back of a horse.
     Asbury confirmed this Buncombe County area's wilderness state when he wrote ona visit in 1806:
          "We came to Buncombe; we were lost within a mile of Mr. Killon's (Killian's),  and were happy to get a schoolhouse to shelter us for the       night.  I had no fire, but a bed wherever I could find a bench; my aid, Moses Lawrence, had a bear skin, and a dirt floor to spread it out on."
     This particular visit was not his first one to the area for he had met the Killian family and neighbors and organized a Methodist Society in 1801 which was the nucleus of the current Asbury Memorial United Methodist Church whose present building is located on Beaverdam Rd and Kimberly Ave.  This was land deeded to the use of a "Church and burying ground forever" by Daniel Killian

Varner Reunion 16 Days Away

Where there is a captivated crowd and a PA System there will be speeches.  Left to right:  Jackie Gaskin,  Monty Calhoun, Debbie Varner (Daughter of Paul Varner, speaking), Neal Lawrence, and I don't know.  The first Varner Reunion.

The next Varner Reunion will be 16 days from now on May the 10th at 6pm.

Wednesday, April 23, 2014

Koch Me If You Can!

Last night I watched we watched an interesting program on the education channel about senses in animals.  They studied dogs, dolphins, wolves, birds, and sharks.  Each type of animal has built in senses that other animals don't have.   With dogs it is mostly their ability to smell they need for survival,; dolphins sonar; birds 300⁰ vision, and so on.  I really enjoyed the program, I thought it was very informative.

Then at the end when they were rolling the credits they said it was produced by the David Koch Foundation.  David Koch?  Is he the David Koch of the infamous billions brothers  Charles and David Koch that lead so many conservative causes?    I have to admit, if it is, I'm surprised. 

Varner's Reunion, May the 10th!

Paul  Owenby at the 2009 Reunion    Paul lived with his parents and siblings in the Howell-Sessions House,  the big house with the big columns on Kennesaw Avenue.       Paul now lives in Blairsville, Georgia. 

This year's Varner Reunion will be May the 10th, 6pm., free admission but bring plenty of money to  buy eats and drinks.

Tuesday, April 22, 2014

Trying to Pull a Realist's Funny Bone

Have you ever try to joke around with a very serious person?   It is a challenge.  If you tell them a joke that starts off with a man and a turtle walk into a bar and the turtle orders the first round of drinks the serious person will interrupt you to  quickly point out that turtles cannot talk like humans and will probably google you information to confirm their statement.   And it  is always like this.

I cannot imagine what happens in their mind when they see Looney Tunes cartoons with talking rabbits, Coyotes buying a case of Acme Dynamite, a cat with a slobbery lisp... wait there is a little guy with a shotgun, he is believable.

18 Days Left? I'm Confused.

Paul and Ivanell  Roper  getting a break after serving food at the first Varner reunion in 2009.  Paul knows  just about all Marietta residents and their relationships to one another.  

Remember, Varner Reunion May 10th, 2014, at 6pm, at the American Legion, Marietta.

The Steeple and the Tower, Ho Ho Hum

I like this picture.  In the foreground is the First Methodist Church with its steeple and in the background  is the courthouse and its tower.  I like it because I remember this little bank alongside the sidewalk that has long since been bulldozed away.  And I like it because it is only about a stone's throw from the apartment in the Clay Homes I spent the first 6 years of my life.... well, no more than two stone's throw, doing it by the relay system.

Monday, April 21, 2014

19 Days Until the Varner Reunion

This is Joe Kozloski, or "Ski" as some people called him.  Joe was a Marietta High School football hero.  

The Varner Reunion will be May the 10th.  I just got a newsletter from Phyllis McLean that it will start 6pm, and food and drink will be available to purchase.   And as always, it will be at the Horace Orr American Legion on Gresham Avenue.

Reality Blog #4, Adam to the Rescue

A few weeks ago I downloaded the program GIMP, which is supposed to be a free version of PHOTOSHOP. 

As I was downloading it the system asked me was OK to let things be downloaded into my computer.  I thought I was OKing GIMP stuff, so clicked my permission.  It opened up a wide corridor or passageway of  cheap ads.

After  that, each time I went on line cheap ads or SPAM took over my screen.  Sometimes I could X them out and sometimes when I Xed them out  it would also cancel out the on-line program I requested.  It was very counter-productive.

I  wonder how much the people of the ads paid to get their advertisements unsolicited invading computers.  I cannot imagine   anybody actually being inspired to do any kind of business with these ads.

Yesterday, my son Adam and his girlfriend Savvy were over for Easter Dinner.  I put Adam to work,  earning his meal, so to speak,  to correct the SPAM invasion problem.  Adam is an electronic expert.  He quickly solved my problems.  I really appreciated what he did to save my butt again.

Now, I wonder how long it will be until I get myself into another electronic mess? 

Sunday, April 20, 2014

Tuba Skinny, French Quarter, 2014

Watch the guy tremble his shoulder before he starts dancing.  It reminds me of some kind of bird mating ritual.  

20 Days Left!

The late Jack Meaders is pictured here talking to C.W. Connor at the 2009 Varner Reunion.  Jack left us in March, 2011.

2 weeks and 6 days to go until the Varner Reunion, May the 10!


The magazine HUMBUG came out in the 1950s shortly after MAD Magazine took on a new look.  The new look of MAD and the start of HUMBUG  are related events.  The editor and key artists of MAD walked away, or were fired., and they started their own magazine, published  by PLAYBOY, named TRUMP.  TRUMP last two issues, then they started HUMBUG.  If you saw HUMBUG on the magazine, printed on paper and poor color, you would probably think this magazine won't last very long. You would have been right.  It lasted 11 issues.

Since the baseball season is upon us, I thought I would hop on the bandwagon and show HUMBUG's take off on baseball.  Artist Arnold Roth, who in time, went back with MAD.

ppssttt!  Be sure and click each image as you read it, so you can read it.

Saturday, April 19, 2014

3 Weeks Until The Varner Reunion

Larry White and C.W. Connor at the 2009 Varner Reunion.

Today, this year's Varners Reunion is 3 weeks away!

Reality Blog #3

We had something happen to us today that we haven't experienced in a long time.    We were  approached in a dark area of someone asking for money.  We were in a dark parking lot of a medical facility.  the parking area is under the building , and no one was around. 

A young lady walked up to us and told us a sad story about just discovering she lost her debit cart and she was  now penniless.    She and her daughter had to get home to McDonough  but her boyfriend was working in Ellijay.    I think she could go  on and on if she had to be more convincing.  From our hearts we gave her money.  We felt, you never know, maybe she really telling the truth.   I was feeling for her and at the same moment preparing myself in case she pulled out a gun.  When we gave her the money she thanked us and said with this she had enough money to buy gas to get back home.   

 I didn't see her daughter, I suppose she was sitting in a car.  After she thanked us and told us now she had enough money, as we were getting in our car we saw her approach a woman getting in her car.  Apparently, she had second thoughts about that being enough money.   But, I feel we helped someone in need, and hopefully we will never find ourselves in the same situation as the young lady.

Vagabond Another Time:

The  last time, before today, someone approached  me for money was about a dozen or so years ago.  Then, many times on Sunday mornings I drove to downtown Marietta, parked my car in front of the Cobb County Government buildings on  East Park Square and run.  I would run all around the area, maybe one or two miles in all four directions.  I was in my hometown innards, where I had  freedom like a free-range chicken since I was about 5 years old.  I was in my comfort zone.    Once when I returned to my car a heavy set man approached  me and wanted to know if I had a dollar or two so he could eat some breakfast, he just hitchhiked in from Cartersville, Georgia.  I flatly told him no and got into my car and drove away.  I was not afraid, it was out in the open.

About two weeks later, again, I was downtown running, and when I returned to the car the same heavy set man approached me and told me the same story about just coming into town form  Cartersville, Georgia, and needed a couple of bucks for breakfast.  I told him that is what he said  two weeks ago.  It took him off guard and he was cursing me when I got in my car. 

And it wasn't  even Ground Hog Day.

Friday, April 18, 2014

22 More Days Until The Varner Reunion

Larry Miller told me he does not remember this picture being taken.  I completely understand.

Varner Reunion May the 10th!  

Reality Blog, Part 2

Reality Blog contindues.

I was sitting in a doctors' waiting room by myself.  Actually, I was waiting on someone that had already been called back. 

The staff behind the receptionist counter started talking, once they thought the waiting room was empty.  Naturally they did not see me.

One of the ladies were telling the other two ladies she saw a special on TV about tilapia farms.  She said they feed the tilapia fish poop.  The other two women must looked at her in disbelief.   She reaffirmed what she said, "That's right, I said POOP!

Then she said  the TV program she was watching went on to say tilapia from these farms have about as much nutrients as a small cheeseburger.     

Now,  if the security camera had known I was there, and if it zoomed up  my face it would see a scowl expression.   I LOVE TILAPIA!

Thursday, April 17, 2014

A Rose is a Rose

Here is Katherine Rose Durrett.  A rose is a rose..... Katherine has a big secret.   She has found  the Fountain of Youth and she an't sharing it with anybody! 

Varner's Reunion, May the 10th.

Computer Specks

Seven years ago I left my eye doctor.  He is a very nice guy that takes time with you.  While he is in the room with you , you are his complete focus.  Focus?  Get it?  Yuk, yuk.  Today we returned to him.  I'll call him Bruiser because that is what my late friend  Sam nicknamed him years ago. 

Bruiser's nurses gave me several types of tests.  One of the test was a depth perception test..     I was to sit with my hand on a joy-stick and press the button every time I saw a light go on and off.  I have problem with the depth perception test because I may see a light click on and off  but because I am personally  a delayed action kind of person, so I doubt if the test one a good reading if I saw the lights blink on and off or not.  Also doing the test at times test would go "BEEP BEEP! several times  When we were changing eyes the nurse asked me if I heard the beep beep, I said I did.  She asked me did I know why it was beeping.  I said, "It was fussing at me?"  She confirmed, saying my eye was supposed to be focused  on one thing, and when it wandered is when it beeped.  I thought,  "Damn, that was my ADD, so?"

Bruiser and his nurse both asked me what trouble I was having and I said it is hard for me to read the computer.   I have to take off my glasses to read the font on the computer.   Bruiser said I am near sighted and the glasses are set to make me far sighted.  So, either with the glasses on or off it is not adjusted right.  So, he gave me a prescription for computer reading only.   Years ago I  would have said, "Computer  glasses?   Are you bullshitting me?"

Wait!  I am not through talking about my day.  At the Hoboken Cafe' on Whitlock Avenue we sat at the first booth.  I could look out the window onto Whitlock Avenue.  Across the street I saw the retail Goodyear Store.  I felt a shudder go through me.

Maybe twenty to thirty  years ago, an employee  from there killed his wife, one or two of his kids and wounded one that survived - he ran from him.  They lived at apartments on Powder Springs Street across the street from Gramling Street.

I remember when that dominated the news.  I couldn't not imagine  anybody taking their own off-springs and spouses lives, no matter how bad things have become.   You never know what is going on in someone's head.  Terrible.

Wednesday, April 16, 2014

24 Days Until the Varner Reunion

Judy Hicks and  husband Steve Tolbert.   I knew Judy's father Dudley Hicks and aunt Regina long  before I knew her.  They owned Hicks' Groceries.  They wisely knew to keep their eyes on us young folks.

Remember, the Varner Reunion will be May the 10th this year.

Balancing Minuses and Pluses of Life


click on to read

In the spring of 1975 Anna was pregnant with our first born son, Rocky. One weekend we went to the Atlanta Dogwood Festival, which is booth after booth of arts and crafts.

There was one display of some kind of the things about the same size and as eggs. Out of each one, was a little carved human baby prying him/her out of the cracked egg. I think each one was home made. Anna really liked a certain one and I was going to buy it for her but the one she wanted was reserved for someone else who already paid for it.

The lady told me she also sold them at Tuxedo Pharmacy in the Buckhead section of Atlanta. And if I came there Monday morning I could buy one there. OK.

While looking at the arts and crafts I noticed a strange woman standing at a distance smiling at us. Why? I thought I would pretend to be looking at some art near where she was standing so I edged myself over to get a closer look at her and she wasn’t there. Then, about five minutes in another section of the festival there she was again, looking at us smiling. Again, I pretended to be studying a good photo shot with my camera and backed up to where she was. Only thing is, again she slipped away.

So much for that. I just thought it was mysterious and strange.

The next Monday morning after I got off work at the Post Office in Atlanta I drove to Tuxedo Pharmacy in Buckhead and they did have the little egg/baby that Anna liked so I purchased one and went home to hide it.  I gave it to her later on Mother’s Day.

A day later, Tuesday morning I was driving on my way home from work and I was going through a busy intersection , going under the green light and WHAM!!! A pickup truck rammed my car in the side at full force. It ran the red light part of the same traffic lifht. It knocked the car out of the intersection and onto the edge of a McDonald’s parking lot. The car, a Gremlin, was turned over on its side.

I did not have my seat belt on. The driver’s side of the car was caved in. If I had my seat belt on, I would have been crushed, but luckily the force knocked me on the other side of the car.

The man that hit me also didn’t have his seatbelt on. He went through the window which was the caused of his death a few hours later.

There is an argument here for and against seatbelts in the same wreck.

I remember being in a strange awkward position on the shotgun side of the car, turned over, glass over me, blood oozing out of glass cuts that showered me, and Bob Dylan’s “Blood On The Track” was playing on the car radio.

I found out later the man who went through the windshield lived nearby. He was an aged man, about 65. He was driving to his drugstore to get a prescription refilled. It is believed he fell unconscious while driving, so probably never knew about the accident.

With “Blood On the Track” playing I was pinned down but managed to pull a cigarette out of my breast pocket and light it. What I didn’t know, gasoline was pouring out of thecar onto the ground.

People were gathered around and I heard sirens getting louder. Before I had a chance to take over two good inhales on my cigarette a paramedic reached in and grabbed the cigarette out of mouth.

As they got me out of the crushed vehicle and loaded me onto a stretcher I got a lecture on smoking near an overturned car. I also received a lecture on smoking period – “Smoking can kill you.” one said as they loaded me into the ambulance.

We went to the hospital. Somehow I told somebody to call Anna at work. She and a couple of co-workers arrived shortly after I arrived.

I was x-rayed and looked over and the glass picked out of my hair. Aside from a few scrapes that was solved with bandages the doctors declared I could go home. I had a painful headace. There was some kind of mix-up about transportation, I forgot the details.

When Anna came to the hospital she was too nervous to drive, so a co-worker carried her. Then she had to get back to work and for some reason which I don’t remember I could not be released for about one or two hours.

We called Marie, my mother-in-law to come and pick me up and carry me home.

They wheeled me in a wheelchair to a waiting room and told me to wait for my mother-in-law there. They said that is where she would drive up to, under that drive through awning. OK.

I was sitting there. An older lady was also sitting in a wheelchair near me. Over, behind a round pillar was a tall lanky teenager with long hair, sitting, looking bored.

The older lady asked me was I waiting on someone. I said, “Yes, I am, somebody is suppose to come and pick me up.” She hollered over to the teenage boy, I forgot how she called him, but she said something to get his attention, then once he looked up she said, “Is this the person you are waiting for?”

I said, “No, no. I am waiting for my mother-in-law, it will take her a while, she is coming from north Cobb, between Woodstock and Kennesaw.”

The teenager got and stretched and walked over to be attentive to our conversation because he probably wasn’t sure it concerned him or not.

The older lady went on to explain why she got the boy’s attention was that she didn’t know I was waiting on a female and she was thinking I might be waiting on him, but because of the big pillar hiding us from each other we might not have know we were in the same room.”

That made sense to me. I have seen many comedy of errors that the right hand did not know what the left hand was doing.

The tall teenager walked behind her then folded his arms, like one might do to imitate a bird and started to pretend to peck the top of  her head. It reminded me of a big bird standing over her pecking her on the top of her head.. I don’t remember if Big Bird was known yet or not, but if so, that is what he looked like. Why was he doing this? Acting crazy behind that old lady’s back. Was he on drugs?

I don’t know why he did it, but it got me trying to swallow my giggles. I was probably high on some sort of pain medicine.

I took off from work ten days or so. I had a pounding headache. The other man’s insurance company gave us book value for my Gremlin and paid me a small amount for my pain and suffering and reimbursed monetarily what sick leave I used.

Still happy with American cars, we bought an orange Pacer that looked something like a big pumpkin.

Just after I returned to work I put my motorcycle up for sale. I had a Honda CL350. It was the type of motorcycle that was good for road or off-the-road. A man came and was really impressed with the Honda and complemented me for taking a such good care of it. I was asking $600.00. He didn’t try to talk me down. He wrote out a check and told me would I please wait until Friday to cash it until Friday, and if I didn’t mind he would predate the check for Friday. No problem, I told him.

The check bounced. I went to his house and the house was empty. He and his family moved. I went to the Post Office and paid a fee for them to look up the man’s forwarding address and he did not turn in one. He and his family just skipped out. I went to the local school and talked to the kid’s teachers and she said the boy told his classmates they were moving to some town in Oklahoma.

I went to the County D.A. office and talked to an assistant about how would I go about pressing charges against the man for giving me a rubber check and riding off in the sunset.

The assistant D.A. is now a prominent lawyer and also owns two barbecue places in town – his barbecue is the North Carolina type, delicious! He told me that when I accepted the predated check from him I was accepting his credit, with risks that come with such. The act of accepting his credit made it a “non-criminal matter”. Credit problems is a civil matter.

I tell these two incidences of bad things happening to me because I wonder if it was something the gods worked out, a kind of “give and take” or maybe a Karma, of a plus causing a negative to back down? Or put it this way, I suffered a bit, to prevent anything negative happening during the birth of my son. He was born healthy and wise.

And, if you recall the smiling dame at the Dogwood Arts Festival…. Was she someone dealing out the cards of life?

It is just a thought.

But if that was the case, what did the guy that went through the windshield get?

Tuesday, April 15, 2014

26 Days Until the Varners Reunion - Free!

That is right, The Varner Reunion admission is Free this year.  I know one person who won't like that.  She is an excellent  slipper-inner and will not want all that talent go to waste.

This a picture of James "Roughhouse" Camp at the 2009 Varner Reunion.  "Roughhouse" was his football nickname in high school.  He was so rough and built like a house he always left a wake of people moaning and groaning and that was just down the hallway.

My Reality Blog, part 1

Reality TV shows really draws large audiences, that is a fact.  A real reality show I think would be very boring.  Reality is not dancing around  exploding firecrackers and dodging roman cannons.   Real life is a day to day drudgery of watching our money and watching TV and your neighbors. 

Anyway, statistics show that reality programs shows  are crowd getters.  So here is my first attempt to jump on the bandwagon:
Last Wednesday when I was placing our garbage can at the street for pickup the neighbor pulled up beside me in her car and rolled down her window.  She asked me what time does the garbage normally pickup.

I told her usually before 8 A.M.

She thanked me and pulled into her driveway.

I saw by her drive were two garbage cans with garbage over flowing  onto the ground.  It looked normal for them.  I remembered that she did not use the same garbage service as we did,.  But maybe she changed services I thought.  I also thought  several times she changed her garbage service, either because they would not pick up her unorganized messed piled all over or she didn't pay the bill.

In a short time I heard the roar of a big motor and the whining of hydraulics.   A garbage truck was out front.  I ran to the window and I saw a man moving our garbage can back to the edge of the yard, hopped on the back of the truck and they drove on.
The neighbor's garbage was still there, hanging out of cans and on the ground.  At least it appeared they were all in bags.  I think it took them a while to conform to putting their garbage in bags.
I thought she thought signed up with the garbage company I use or she was considering it.

The next morning I noticed all her garbage was gone and the cans were still standing there.  Who took it I do not know.

I wonder why she asked me about the time of our garbage sercice?

So, that was my first fast paced, energized reality blog.  I hope your heart  withstood the excitement. .

Monday, April 14, 2014

Tuba Skinny, Fresh Out of the Oven!

How more fresh could this this Tuba Skinny music be?  It was performed this past weekend at the French Market Stage, in the French Quarters.  We have Joe Stewart to thank for this.  

Check out Joe's blog TALLEY HO! at:


We watched AUGUST: OSAGE COUNTY video the other day.  It is about an extended family of two aging sisters, their husbands,  and grown children.  It takes place in Osage County, Oklahoma; prairie county.  The husband of one of the sisters first is missing and they find his body.  Not many kind words are spoken in the movie, there are no love lost, I don't think, between any of them except two that  are secretly having an affair, and even then it in incest.  It was originally a play, now a movie.   As events unfold and people tell what is really on their mind you can understand how it has the makings for a play:  A Tennessee Williams gut-wrenching , let no stone be unturned kind of play.  Depressing story but  good acting, in my opinion.
The movie was directed by John Wells and written by Tracy Letts.

Starring Meryl Street, Julia Roberts, Chris Cooper, Wean McGregor, Margo Martindale, and Sam Shepard. 

Fred Williamson at the Varner's Reunion

At Varner and Bell Reunions pictures you see very few  Afro-Americans.  In our formative years , by law, we lived in a segregated society.  We did not know much about black or "colored" people back then.   Fred Williamsons gave us an education.  He worked at Varners.  He was not humble, he looked you in the eye as an equal when he talked to you.  He was hyper and witty.  I never heard a crossed word about Fred.  He taught us young people that hung around Varners that he was just as  good as we were, or thought we were.

Fred worked at Lockheed forever and when Varner's closed he worked part time at the Junior Varsity in Atlanta, until it closed.

Here is Fred and his lovely wife at the first Varner Reunion April 25, 2009. I don't remember seeing them last year, I hope they make it this year.

Sunday, April 13, 2014

27 More Days Until the Varner Reunion

Has Dottie Golden ever had a frown or a scowl  instead of a big smile on her face?  You can't prove it by me.  Hopefully, she is patting her foot waiting for May the 10th for the Varner Reunion

I remember on a Sunday morning in 1961 in Panama City Dottie and her sister Dianne had to break away from the partying and find a Catholic Church.  That is being devout!

SUNDAY FUNNIES!! Double Feature Today, about ARCHIE Takeoffs!

ARCHIE ANDREWS  has been a lot in the news lately.  It was reported that Archie will die in July.  Then, they said he won't die, his alter ego will die.  I guess we will just have to see.  When I reported it on facebook and this blog some people were upset.   It was like losing an old friend.  It didn't bother me, we would have ran in different cliques in high school.  His was a smiley face group and the group I was in was either getting into trouble or lying ourselves out of trouble.

MAD comic book did a takeoff of ARCHIE and  the ARCHIE  publishers didn't peep a word.   A few years later HELP Magazine did a takeoff on ARCHIE and the ARCHIE  publishers carried HELP to court.  HELP Magazine lost.  They were ordered by the court, as part of the settlement, never to print that story again.
What is  ironic about the order is that the same person, Harvey Kurtzman wrote both stories and Will Elder was the artist for the both stores.   And if you read each story you will see that MAD treated the Archie character mean, very critical.  And the Archie character in HELP Magazine was kind and idealistic.  As Harvey Kurtzman said, PLAYBOY Magazine should have been the one to sue, they were critical of PLAYBOY's pseudo yuppie life style in the HELP version.

Why didn't the Archie people sue MAD?  It probably had something to do with the fathers of the  publisher of ARCHIE and the publisher of MAD were old friends and I think partners in an earlier comic book publishing world.

Here are the two stories, the first is MAD'S take on ARCHIE and second is HELP's  version.   See for yourself.

(click on images so that you can read the balloons and see what is going on).