Tuesday, June 19, 2007

It Finally Rained Today

It was a great day. Nothing too exciting happened and my hair has officially frizzed to new heights but it was a great day. Here are some of the good things that happened today:

1. Char and I walked at lunch.
2. Char's grandson is not sick.
3. I got to visit with the folks at the Bagel joint (I love that guy that works at Bluegrass Kitchen and the Bagel joint -- he rocks) and Charleston Bread Company (the people there are too wonderful -- I can't even describe them).
4. It will soon be Festivall so everyone in Charleston is anticipating a good time.
5. I feel blessed to have Corby alive (even with a dislocated jaw) after his terrible accident on Sunday morning and Jenna too.
6. Just wanted to thank everyone for smiling today and being nice.
7. No one put bugs in my office or complained about anything (well almost no one).
8. I got an email from Kung Fu Nation and they have shipped me my vinyl record (yes that is a VINYL record that is played on a turntable) of the new White Stripes' Icky Thump along with my own one of 3,333 Jack White memory stick.
9. When I left for work this morning, Bottle Brush was in Heather and Lefty's yard. But guess what, he didn't come over and whip Max's butt or anything.
10. I heard some great music - very little opera today but some bluegrass, Blind Boys and George Jones (I think I am going through a vintage country phase).
11. The July 2007 Texas Monthly came in the mail.

Should I go on? I think not because I don't want to jinx tomorrow.

Monday, June 18, 2007

I Admit a Deep Dark Secret

Okay, this is a really, really big secret. However I suspect there are those who know, possibly my boss Ken and Robes Pierre (keeper of all knowledge about The Third T). I love opera. As an authentic, undereducated, backwoods, fresh off the turnip truck, country hayseed, I know nothing about it but I love it. Especially Italian opera. In my next life I hope to be cultured, urban, suave, etc. and know about these kinds of things. However, here and now, in this life, if I hear it sometimes it makes my stomach turn over and my heart really heavy in my chest. I have watched the semi-finals of Paul Potts singing on Britain's Got Talent over and over. I cry every time. Here is the link: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=rDB9zwlXrB8. If you click on it, please fast forward over those bozos talking and get to the good part where he sings. Turn your speakers up and if you are afraid of being embarrassed by being caught -- do it anyway. It is like looking at something really beautiful -- maybe a great sunset or baby birds. Or reading something you can relate to. He is just an average person with an incredible talent.

Now that you know one of my secrets, feel free to make fun of me. Everyone else does. Especially Loraina and Mr. Aardvarck.

Speaking of which, let me take this opportunity to thank our two summer interns, Andrew Aardvark and his little assistant, Loraina (with the large office and picture in The State Journal) for putting dead roaches in my office. I actually took those two to lunch earlier this month. I have also bragged to the other employees about what great interns they are and how successful they are going to be when they get out of school and blah, blah, blah.

I stand corrected, after last Friday's incidents, I think they are both geniuses and the next big things. They have even topped some of the tricks I have played on them. Watch out WVU and Marshall, I have taught them everything I know (miniscule amount of knowledge) and they have learned a lot from Vickie, Heather, Benjamin Bunny, Little Darla, Margaret, Crystal Lite and the Incredible Shrinking Laura. Summer interns -- you rock!!!

That's all for now and if you don't like the opera or my post -- just remember, you are not being forced to read it (well most of you aren't).

Thursday, June 7, 2007

Die Phil Die

Please join the movement to will the death of Phil Leotardo this weekend. I am so depressed by the ending of the Sopranos that I am considering cancelling my subscription to HBO.
Why would the entertainment gods do this to us? I know somewhere there are people with exciting lives and wonderful charming family members and interesting works of art and delightful books and marvelous wines and meals, blah blah blah. But not here, not in my house, not in my world. There is just me, Scrappy, Corbs -- living for the Sopranos.
And I am borderline strange, Scrappy is a dog and Corby barely grunts at me when he encounters me in the house. So why would they take away the Sopranos? My life is now officially an empty vessel for storing evil thoughts.
I may never forgive HBO. I was loyal to Tony even when the shows were disjointed and not exciting. Even when they had gratuitous (and totally unnecessary female nudity) I hung in there and paid my bill. I kept the stupid service for years (when I didn't even turn on channel 400), they cancelled Carnivale, then Six Feet Under (gulp) and now the Sopranos is going away. Is there no justice?
Why me? Why not cancel some loser shows? Shows like SuperNanny or cartoons or anything else? Except maybe Antiques Roadshow (my secret show that no one knows I watch).
Help me. I am spiraling out of control. Monday morning -- I am calling the cable company and cancelling HBO.

Wednesday, June 6, 2007

Don't Count on Your Life Being Saved

My camera and I made a trip up to the CPR training today. Here are some of the shots. Caption them yourself. Benjamin Bunny is now officially dating his dummy just so he can tell everyone he is dating a "model." The skills of blowing in the ear of an inanimate object will really come in handy once he gets to Spain.

Andrew Aardvark did a great job pointing his smiling and point his finger -- if only that was crucial to life saving.

Here is Ted with his stable of lovelies.

Have a good evening. Get out and enjoy the nice weather.

Friday, June 1, 2007

Peeps Gone Wild

Here is the link to the video "Peeps Gone Wild" by Rebecca Burch.
If you are unable to directly link, just cut & paste it into your browser. It was featured at the ArtWalk gallery at the same time Corby was exhibiting. It is really good but warning for some viewers . . . might be a little racy for your "taste". The section called "Peeps Kegger" is probably apropos for Corby's WVU days.
I hope to post more this weekend and remember if you feel you are insulted or offended by anything in my blog(s), no one is forcing you to read it.

Friday, May 18, 2007

The Art Show

Here are some pictures from the art show Corby was a part of yesterday. All of the art was wonderful and so many young people came by -- impressive. The "Peep Show" was so inventive and creative and as soon as it is posted online, I will link to it. I am so proud to have such a talented and sensitive son. Even if he did leave as soon as girls came to the show.

One More Blog

I know I had vowed to never blog again but there is just so much I have to say. Maybe the "anonymous" person who posted the rude post won't do it again and I can continue. I especially hope Corby reads the story below.

The story I am pasting in here was written by Christy Whitson (from Corbin, KY) about her mom and I really liked it and thought you might too. It pretty well sums up a lot of stuff.

A Lucky Girl

I was a lucky girl who had the prettiest Mom around, especially when we talked her into wearing lipstick. Mom also just happened to be the best bluegill fisherman in the Tri-County.

Having grown up in the mountains of West Virginia with 12 brothers and sisters, my mom understood one main and enduring message: how to have fun. Finding herself in Kentucky with a husband who worked long hours to keep the household going, and four little girls who looked just like her, my mom set about to reveal to us a joyful life of love and adventure. To achieve this, all she had to do is be herself. Through being herself, she showed us a life of adventure was not about climbing Mount Everest or exploring the jungles of the Congo. Instead, it was about the contentment felt when your last thought at night is wishing it were already morning, and your first thought at morning’s light is how giddy you are that the day is starting.

It was not unusual for our summer day to start out with Mom calling out to us to “Get up girls...come and look what I found!” We would jump up with sleepy eyes and trudge through the house to seek her voice since we knew this tone meant she had found something really exciting. We would finally locate Mom in the backyard, with a green snake wrapped around her fingers and wrist while telling us to hurry to get a jar or empty coffee can to put the snake in. We would then proceed to play with the snake for about 24 hours, while Mom told us about its habits and how it would not hurt anyone. She explained that even this little snake had a “job” which God gave it, and how we should not be afraid of, only cautious of, snakes. Another time, Mom brought home an entire “family” of baby possums, explaining that their mother was dead in the road and that they needed a little help. Looking back on it, I am sure Mom knew the baby possums would die soon, but she just wanted us to see them.

She wanted us to know about life and its twists and turns, its ups and downs. She wanted us to learn about compassion. When a thunderstorm would break out, Mom would say “Let’s go sit out on the front porch and watch it storm!” There we would all be, with our legs dangling from our large porch swing, watching the lightening, smelling the air, hearing the rumble of the retreating thunder. Mom told us once again, do not be afraid. “Always take shelter but don’t fear nature, because God is always with us, and he wants us to enjoy the world while we are in it.” She then went on to point out to us that the colorful rainbow that often formed after the storm was God telling us that “everything is OK.”

Mom was an excellent bowler, golfer, square dancer, swimmer ... you name it, Mom mastered it, even while we tagged along. I remember watching her so many times, as she released her spinball at the bowling alley, clapped while she square danced, or bounced her shoulders as she as she laughed. I wished I could be her or be just like her. She just absolutely made the best out of every day, no matter what. She and her best friend Betty were well known for setting off to fish at their various “secret” fishing places. Once they both found out that they could catch a lot of fish in a particular place, we would have fresh fried fish at least once a week. It was usual to come home from school and converse with Mom as she would clean and fillet the fish she and Betty had caught that day. They would both plan ahead of time for their next fishing trip, both of them gathering nightcrawlers from under rocks in the yard.

Mom worked to remain active in the community through things like being a Cub Scout leader. She wanted us to follow her example by things, like keeping the neighborhood cheered up. My sisters and I usually had a gregarious nature, so she felt we should share it. One year in particular, this was illustrated by the fact that she somehow came up with plastic Beatle wigs and a fake guitar for my sister Karen, and had us parade through our neighborhood, performing at each stop. We must have sang “I Wanna Hold Your Hand,” and “She Loves You Yeah Yeah Yeah...” hundreds of times before it was all over. As we began to outgrow our plastic Beetle wigs, our performances floundered, much to the dismay of my mother, who I am sure wished she could have found a way to extend these “glory” days, the purpose of which were to make the neighbors laugh, or at least bring a smile to their faces.

So many times Mom would load us up into our used Volkswagen van, usually with a few of our neighborhood friends crowding in, and off we would go. Well ... we would “go” once a few of us got out to push the van when it would not start in the regular way. Here we would go, down the street, with Mom trying to “clutch it” to force the van motor to start after we gained enough speed to do so. We would then jump in, quickly slide the door shut, and laugh with Mom as she proclaimed, “Hold on, here we go!”

These were such bright days as we laughed and sang while rolling to our destination.You see, my mother wanted us to be happy in everyday life. She wanted us to feel the excitement of watching a hummingbird feed, or the satisfaction of catching a fish and then having it for supper. She wanted us to taste the biscuits we just helped her roll and cut out. She wanted us to smell the freshness of the rain and to go cheer up the elderly neighbor on the corner. She wanted us to care about others but not be afraid of anything. She lived this and she breathed this. She pushed on and kept on, keeping us interested and secure in our knowledge that God controls everything and there is nothing wrong with us having joy on this earth he created.

So when I look at my mother I do not see the hints of gray in her hair or her slower ways that are the cadence of the march of time. Instead, I see and hear the beautiful and adventuresome woman who sang out from the driver’s seat of our Volkswagen van, “Hold on, here we go!!...” Indeed, there we have gone, mama, ... holding on, while sometimes laughing and sometimes crying, but always with the sun glimmering through the windows as we go bouncing across the pavement on our way through life ... feeling the smoothness of the ride and always the bumps, but surely knowing that things will be great once we get there. Happy Mothers Day, Mom. God bless you always. We all love you.