Tuesday, June 30, 2009

Here's Striker!

A lot has happened since my last post. Some I can tell you and some I can't. I was on vacation with my family for 1 week and basically in deep seclusion the 2nd. I am ok now.

Let's talk about vacation 1st - at least it was fun. I just have to say that my family might have been the only un-tattooed people on the Redneck Riviera. I do not have a tattoo and probably never will. That is a personal choice and if one of my readers happen to have a discreet tattoo somewhere on their body - I can live with that. It is the really big all over everywhere tattoos that are just too much. Really when you are 70 is that barbed wire anklet gonna look cool?

Now, someone in my family did have a tattoo - it was my grandfather. He was in WWII and in the navy. He had an anchor on his upper arm. When I was little I thought that when you joined the army or the navy you got tattooed as part of joining. My grandmother later told me that he hated it now. He was young when he got it and his mom freaked. As he grew older he thought that was one of the more stupid things he had done.

Back to the beach - I do NOT have a beach body. My kids do - their parents do not. However, I was looking good compared to some. This sounds tacky, but it made me feel better about myself some what. I still have lots of weight to lose, but I don't think I am without hope.

Another minor point - most men do not have hair on their chest. OK, I was not checking the men out - I have a very good man who I "check out" every day so let's not go there. As I was lying there in the sun I started thinking about the beach. Men, women and children and dressed in basically nothing more than underwear walking around. You can't walk around your office in your underwear - but at the beach people let it all hang out. So as I sat there pondering how our bathing suits look like underwear I noticed that most men do not have hair on their chests. I do like my man and his hairy chest. Just another observation from the sand.

Ok, now to my week on seclusion. It was self induced and thrust upon me like the weight of the world that I was reluctant to hold. It was the "feeling of impending doom." I can't go into particulars, but I felt depressed, scared, pissed off and just in general felt like crap. I survived only because I have the best family and friends on the face of the freaking earth. I have learned that God is there even if you are trying to ignore Him - He will still help you even if you think you can do it on your own. Your family has the same struggle and when you bond together that is something very special. And lets not forget my friends - they loved me enough to walk with me down the worst road in my life - no questions, no backing out. My friends are truly my family too - my other sisters - the older ones (even if it is only between a few weeks and months). I've had to play big sister all my life, but with them I get to be the one to listen. That is something that you can only repay in kind - I do not wish ill on anyone, but I have had the best set the example and I know that I can repay if the time comes.

Sorry today's blog was a little blah - I just needed to get it out. There are not pictures or videos to express my thoughts from the beach or my life from last week. Words only. Things can only get better from here.

Saturday, June 13, 2009

WEATHER or not ?

Update of the lists. I really had 11. I know, I know - crazy. But it works for me.

I got home yesterday at 3:00 after running numerous errands with. Made it just in time to see the bottom fall out of the sky. Chicken Little would have been vindicated because the sky was falling.

It hailed at my house the size of really big butter beans. Not pea size - butter bean. The dog was whining, the cat howling and Eminem clutched on to me for dear life. The storm passed quickly and I was doing my best trying to get ahold of my hubby and Scout while they were camping. They were fine.

I started to pack and get some things checked off the list because according to the radar, hell on Earth was coming. A line of red that grew wider every time I checked. Let's just say it was a doosy.

Long story short, as I was trying to call the Hubmaster and the lights went out, my mother called telling me my Dad told us to "seek shelter in the lowest floor of your home." We had a tornado warning and so we get in the closet with a flash light and radio. We sat in there for an hour, but sat in the dark for 9 hours. We eventually let the house in search of food hoping that the linemen would fix the electricity while we were gone. Most neighborhoods were dark - it would be a while.

At 2:18 this morning the lights came back on. I went and turned them all out and got back in bed thinking how far behind I was on my lists. I am even further now that i decided to do one last post before vacation.

I should make it. Will post when I can, but will be back on the 19th.

Thursday, June 11, 2009

Vacation, all I ever wanted

Hot Dog! My family and I leave for the beach tomorrow. We haven't been in 7 years. Awful I know. Our son doesn't remember it and our daughter has never been. We can't wait. My children are already brown as berries, but they will come back from the beach looking like they have just got off the boat from Cuba.

One thing about vacations that is a little stressful is the packing. Since I am an obsessive, control freak - I might just be in my element here. I have about 7 lists going. No lie. I have a list of things to be done today, a list of clothes for each child, a list of things to buy at Wal-Mart, a list of goods ( non clothing items ) to take, a list of what to buy when we get there, and a list of places to eat while we are there - complete with menus and driving instructions. On the menu list is also how to find the movie theater (of the picture show as we still call it), and how to get to the naval aviation museum in Pensacola. We are going to see the Blue Angels.

I am just about listed out. Eminem is going to her last day at VBS and the boys are still at scout camp. While I have a few last hours to myself, I will be going to Wal-Mart to knock off one of the lists. The rest will be tackled this afternoon. Eminem likes to help get organized too. Lord help us all.

With all of these lists that have to be made and checked off, lets just think of other lists just for the fun of it.

List of favorite movies List of favorite classic cars
1. Gone With the Wind 1. 1964 - 1966 Corvette Sting Ray - Convertible
2. The Graduate 2. 1955 - 1957 Ford Thunderbird
3. Coal Miner's Daughter 3. 1968 Jaguar XKE
4. all Harry Potters-
5. The Sound of Music

Favorite Drinks Favorite Foods
1. Diet dr. pepper 1. cheese - any kind
2. Diet coke 2. creamy peanut butter
3. Key Lime Water - sam's choice 3. Key Lime Pie
4. milk - white or chocolate 4. fried okra
5. sweet tea 5. raisin bran

But I think the best list of all would be the good looking older actors list. I can hear my friends laughing now, counting on their fingers who I will put down. Just to let you know, some people on this list are now deceased. That does not exclude them from being good looking in the movies that I like to watch them in. No particular order after #1.

1. Sean Connery 2. Christopher Plummer 3. Charlton Heston 4. Rex Harrison

There are lots more of these guys - I even know some people around town that fit into this category, but since this is supposed to be anonymous unless you are a celebrity I can't put them up here.

I am off to start my list check off mission. I will post later tonight of the results.

Word Up!

Not sure why this topic came to mind, but I love finding word origins - especially Latin ones - and applying them to lots of English words and showing myself and my children and my students how to improve their vocabulary.

The root word of the day is acro- old Greek akro. The original meaning is "height, tip-end, or extremeties - as in the body". There are lots of words that start with this - mostly lots of medical terms but here are a few.


Acrobat - we think of someone who does flips, but it originally was said to describe someone who walked on their toes.

Acropathy - disease of the extremeties

Acrophobia - fear of heights

Acrostic poem - a non rhyming poem that your make out of the 1st letter (tip end) of a name, it can be a single word or phrase. This is used a lot in elementary school as a creative way for students to expand their vocabulary and not know it. An example is the name Sue - Super, Unique, Energetic.

The best acro word has to be acronym. My favorite acronyms are the ones that are the ones that are real words - not jut BLT - Bacon , Lettuce or Tomato. Words like SCUBA.

Click here for acronym overload.

SCUBA stands for Self Contained Underwater Breathing Apparatus - it sounds Latin, but it is not. Another one is NEWS - bet you did not know that it stood for North, East, West, South.

We can also make acronyms out of words that already exist. This is sort of blending the lines with the acrostic poems, but close enough for me.

IACOCCA ( as in Lee who was head of Chrysler) I Am Chairman Of Chrysler Corporation of America.

FORD - Fix Or Repair Daily

There is also one for Pontiac, but it's not nice so I can't put it here.

Consider yourself educated for the day.

Wednesday, June 10, 2009

You Say It's Your Birthday - It's My birthday Too!

I woke up at 2:43 this morning and realized that I had turned 38. It is a nice even number. I am very partial to things being symmetrical. It is half of 19.

I am at home alone at the moment - the dishwasher is running and the house is clean. Eminem, my daughter is at VBS, and my son, Scout, is at Boy Scout Camp. My husband is not at work and also at scout camp being a scout master. I am here with my cat - Bob, dog - Gunny, 2 fish - Beta Ray and Fishy and a hamster name Jeeps. Thoses are my real pets names. It is nice for a while.

Today at lunch Eminem and I are going to eat my my sister and my mother for lunch at one of my favorite restaurants. They fry the best veggies there. I really like the gourd-type veggies fried - okra and eggplant - Yummy!

So on my birthday, I decided to pull out a book I got on my birthday years ago and read about my birthday. It is a birthday book about birthdays I got on my birthday that I read on my birthday.

It says that June 10th is the "Day of Laughter and Sadness", and that we people clearly have our ups and downs. It also states that "we must protect ourselves against the fascination with the dark side." There is no reference to Darth Vadar here so we must not be talking Star Wars - "Luke I am your father!" No, That's impossible! " It also says that we could lose ourselves in a cheerful public persona while failing to cope with negativity in their private life, and that this dichotomy splits their nature creating a kind of Jekyll and Hyde situation.

That's a nice Happy Birthday for you! All dark and crazy. It only gets better - there is a warning specifically for women. They often channel nervous energy into controlling their environment, for example seeking perfection at work or keeping a spotless home. (As I said above, my house is clean.) This may be an attempt to control disturbances in their consciousness. OK, this is disturbing. I think this hit the nail right on the head.

Let's look at famous people who were also born on this day. BTW, I have finally seen how to hyper link (aren't you happy for this sad and disturbed birthday girl). Judy Garland, she had lots of problems "Auntie Em, Auntie Em, Toto, it's a twister, it's a twister". Hattie McDaniel. The actress that made the movie Gone With The Wind. She was the smartest one in the entire movie - knew all about the ways of Miss Scarlett. F. Lee Bailey, attorney and writer. I have a book that he wrote that I am taking to the beach. He became famous when he defended Sam Shepherd for killing his wife. This was the inspiration for the TV show the Fugitive.

Maurice Sendak wrote "Where the Wild Things Are." Wonderful book. Dan Fouts, former quarterback for the San Diego Chargers. At the time he was playing, he was also the only quarterback with a beard ( useless trivia- sorry). And finally, Prince Phillip. He was a dashing your prince of Greece back in the day. Now, he is kinda hawk-like in his appearance and his eyebrows are out of control.

I think I am in good company.

Other things in this crazy book are: my number is 1. It says I can be stubborn and obstinate and have firm views. I am a Gemini that is a mutable air sign - whatever that means. I am ruled by the planet Mercury and also influenced by the Sun. I do have a nice tan!

About the only good thing it says about my birthday or me is that I am "daring, capable, and human." I will say this though, Darth Vadar was only half human because he had all those electronics and artificial limbs. Stupid thought I know.

So, apparently I am to try not to surrender to the dark side. I will fight evil and wear ruby slippers. Dorothy fought the Wicked Witch of the West. Maurice Sendak fought the Wild Things.
F Lee Bailey fights the prosecutions, Dan Fouts fought a defensive line, Prince Philip fights the establishment and probably most of all Hattie McDaniel fought racism long before it was in vogue. She was the 1st African American to win an Oscar.

I have a fight or two of my own to deal with. I will just take my obstinance, my natural dichotomous attitude and my urge to control the universe and with my own ruby slippers will kick my problems in the rear. It is a very good birthday indeed!

"Let the wild rumpus start!" - Max from Where the Wild Things Are

Tuesday, June 9, 2009

Plastic Jesus Revisited - Combo Blog

I decided that I was just not through talking about the Plastic Jesus song or Bob Dylan yet.

We will start with Plastic Jesus first. Although I put up a nice picture of Paul Newman up on the page, I did not post a link to him singing the song. As I was looking for a quality video on you tube, I found lots of people doing covers of the song. Apparently, Plastic Jesus has a cult following. I am going to post the original.

Click here for the Plastic Jesus Song.

Bob Dylan Revisited. I think by now you do realize that I am quite fond of the man. So for that reason I am going to set up a special area on the left just for Bob Dylan links. I can almost hear my friends big sighs of anguish. Just remember - IT'S NOT ABOUT YOU! - It's about BOB.

Ok, yesterday I mentioned the O'Jays. They did a fabulous job covering the song Emtionally Yours- Which was on the empire Burlesque album. I have watched the video a lot over the past few days. It makes me think about how good Otis Redding would have been singing this song. I love Otis too! ( He will be a subject for another day).

There is also a song on the John Wesley Harding album titled "I'll Be Your Baby Tonight" On the 30th anniversary special about Bob Dylan, Kris Kristofferson and Willie Nelson sing the song. It is a great version of a classic sounding country song where you need to have a couple of adult beverages and sing along with the band. Others who have covered the song and you can find the video on you tube - Emmylou Harris, UB40 with Robert Palmer, Norah Jones, and Englebert Humperdinck. No lie - I'm linking the Dinck. The original is easy to find too, but I like Kris and Willie's version the best.

Another wonderful Bob Dylan song is "When I Paint My Masterpiece".  It was made famous by The Band.  I love the way Rick Danko and Levon Helms sound!

One last thing - at the moment - about Bob. Brother Baby went so far to get me a for real Highway 61 sign. I still have it.  Thanks Brother Baby!

Monday, June 8, 2009

Empire Burlesque - Happy 24th Birthday

Yep, you have no clue what in the world I am talking about. This happens to be one of my favorite albums by one of my main men - Mr. Robert Allen Zimmerman aka Bob Dylan.

This album - and yes it probably was an album, but I had the cassette tape - came out 24 years ago today. Two days befor my 14th birthday. The planets had aligned with Bob just for me!

This is also the summer of Live Aid and Farm Aid. Why are these 2 fabulous shows not on DVD? - we will save this for another day too.

Back to Bob, I am not really sure when I became aware of Bob, but he is a staple now. My family had some vinyl albums and I had learned at a young age to use the record player. I know that we had 4 Bob Dylan albums - Highway 61 Revisited, Blonde on Blonde, John Wesley Harding, and the one I can never remember that name of it but Bob is holding a blue cat on the cover. For my birthday I got the 5th one - Empire Burlesque.

1985 was when MTV was on fire - they actually showed videos and I would sit for hours smack dab in front of the tv in the den with the vcr poised to "tape" the most recent cool video. I have since questioned some of those choices but one is ""Tight Connection to My Heart". My friend "Perry Como" who is not a Dylan fan kinda like this song. I think he still does.

Bob Dylan really just can't carry a tune and that is ok - neither can I. But his music is just flat out brilliant. How many folk singers can make gospel sound good - how many folk singers have had Stevie Wonder and the O'Jays records their songs - just one. I personally think that his music eclipses all genres and time.

When I was in college, Bob Dylan came to campus and I got the whole family tickets. As Jose' Cuervo (little sister) would say - it was a family Bob Dylan. A fun time was had by all. I do remember him singing Tangled up in Blue. One of my favorites.

Ok, back to the 1985 songs - the ones that are really good on the album are - Tight Connection to my Heart, Emotionlly Yours, Trust Yourself, and I'll Remember You. The whole album is great, but these are my favorites.

Check out the following links for Bob

Desolation Row              Highway 61 Revisted          Subterranean Homesick Blues

Bob Dylan's 115th Dream              I'll Remember You           Trust Yourself

Saturday, June 6, 2009

867-5309 - The Most Known Phone Number in the World

Jenny, Jenny - who can I turn to ?

Everybody knows this song and phone number! - 8-6-7-5-3-0-9!

My wonderful younger brother "Brother Baby" called me this morning. He is out of town playing golf with a friend. The cool restaurant/bar place they went last night had a band and it was none other that Tommy Tutone. Yes, before you ask he did play 867-5309.

"Brother Baby" got to sit and hang out and drink an adult beverage or two with Tommy Heath (Tutone). He never took off his 80's classic eye wear - the Ray-Ban Wayfarers. They had a good time, and he is going back tonight. I will get a picture, but no autograph. "Brother Baby" just put that out there up front. That is understandable.

The Tommy Tutone Band now plays country and from what I hear is very good at it. Not the new country stuff, but the old Outlaw Country - Waylon, Willie and the boys. The stuff we (Brother Baby, myself and our little sister Jose' Cuervo) listened to when we were growing up in the late 70's and early 80's. Our parents resisted disco like the plague. So we all like a little David Allen Coe, Waylon (God rest his soul), and Willie.

Another thing that Tommy sang was an obscure song by The Band. It is titled "When I Paint My Masterpiece." This song was written by another family favorite Bob Dylan. I've never heard Dylan's version, but the Band does a wonderful job. Brother Baby said it was a great country version.

"When I Paint My Masterpiece" was written in 1971. Dylan put it on an album and then the Band also did the same year. The Grateful Dead (which I do not follow) played it live in the 80's and 90's. Then Jerry Garcia passed away and they quit that. I always thought Jerry Garcia looked like Santa Claus. "Oh, wear a touch of gray - kinda suits you anyway!)

Check out the links to the left.

Someday everything is gonna sound like a rhapsody - when I paint my masterpiece!

Friday, June 5, 2009

I don't care if it rains or freezes,

'long as I got my Plastic Jesus - sittin' on the dashboard of my car.

No I am not being tacky here, this is a wonderful song, and I know it by heart. My friends even know it too. I would talk about it all the time.

If you have ever seen the movie "Cool Hand Luke" with Paul Newman and George Kennedy. Newman is sent to the county farm because he had torn up some parking meters. He was put on the chain gang.

Anyway, while his unfortunate incarceration, Luke's mother dies. He pulls out a banjo and sings the "Plastic Jesus song". I really don't know why.

Before Tivo and all of that, "Cool Hand Luke" came on TBS one day and I taped it on the family VCR. Later, I rewound the movie to the part of the Plastic Jesus song. I wrote down all the words and then proceeded to go get my guitar and play the whole song.

Years later as a grown, married woman, my mother calls me and says she is sending me something in the mail, but would not tell me what it was. I was a little apprehensive, but waited. It came a few days later, and it was an article all about the infamous "Plastic Jesus".

In Tunica County, Mississippi, there is a little factory that makes and sells the Plastic Jesus. They gave the history of it and all. One interesting tidbit that was told is that some older models of the Plastic Jesus were hollow, and that moonshiners hid their liquor in it. Not sure how true this is, but I think that would have to be a pretty big Jesus.

Of course I can't find the Tunica factory online. Maybe they are out of business - who knows, but since you can find anything on eBay I searched there.

Yes, you can find a Plastic Jesus there. The things are even bobble heads. How tacky. Obviously, none of these are authentic types that were sung about. These are supposed to "come in colors pink and pleasant - glows in the dark cause its iridescent". Then you are to take it with you when you travel far.

If you watch the clip on the left of the screen, you will see stupid footage of the movie "Airplane". In one clip they show the dashboard of the cockpit, and yo and behold, their He is- the Plastic Jesus!

A final word, I just don't think I can talk about this great movie and not use the best line from the whole movie. "What we have here is, a failure to communicate." I really think it deserves a blot post unto itself. It will just have to wait.

Thursday, June 4, 2009

If you got the money , Honey---

I've got the time - to budget that is.

Oh why oh why on Earth do I constantly screw up budgeting.

I have been the "nerd" of the family for about 5 years now. check out Dave Ramsey for the definition of the "nerd". I try really hard to get the finances correct and then I always forget something or put something in the wrong place.

I could put the blame on too much strees from my job, but since it is summer and I don't go back for 2 months we have a problem.

I think we do fine on the envelope method, but I try to sqeeze everything else in there and still mess up. We will not be in the poor house mind you, it is just ticking me off is all.

On another note - it has been 20 years since the Tinnamen Square thing. They still don't know the guys identity - you know the one who stood in front of the tank. I would have thought those evil Commie *&%$ (people) would have had him arrested on the spot. But that's what I get for thinking.

A sad note, David Carradine has died today in Bangkok. I first saw him in the miniseries "North and South". He was a mean plantation owner, and my parents were calling him Kung Fu. I now know why of course. Authorities say he committed suicide - sad. he was 72.

Speaking of Bangkok --- there is a song about that too. One night in Bangkok by Murry Head

here are some lyrics

One night in Bangkok makes a hard man humble

Not much between despair and ecstasy

One night in Bangkok and the tough guys tumble

Can't be too careful with your company

I can feel the devil walking next to me

cool video-

Wednesday, June 3, 2009

It was the 3rd of June - another sleepy dusty Delta day.

I was out chopping cotton and my brother was baling hay.

Happy Ode to Billie Joe Day! The lyrics above come from the #1 song by Bobbi Gentry "Ode to Billie Joe". I have always liked the song and it has a small cult following. It is a song about a young man who commits suicide by flinging himself aff the Tallahatchie bridge. The song earned a Grammy. A movie was even made to honor Billie Joe McAllister.

Let's talk a little ( for my 2 to 3 friends that actually read this). Let's start with Roberta Lee Streeter aka Bobbie Gentry. Born dirt poor and raised in poverty in the MS Delta. She is beautiful and talented. One of the 1st country female stars to write her own music. She also wrote the song "Fancy" that was made popular in 1991 by Reba McEntire. This is one of the few songs that I know of that mentions a roach - the bug.

The song - told in story fashion around the table passing around the black eyed peas. It is a catchy tune and has been recorded by other talented people - Ella Fitzgerald and Frank Sinatra sung it as a duet, the Ventures did a instrumental out of it, and Diana Ross and the Supremes placed it on their "Reflections" LP. I personally have heard it at a party sung by an old black soul singer. He did a durn good job of it too.

The movie - perhaps the most controversial to me. This movie was directed by Jethro Bodine ( no crap - look it up - it was Max Baer, jr.). I can't picture anyone taking direction form him - but they obviously did. The movie was shot on location in the MS Delta. I have seen the bridge where the filming was made. A local museum has a few artifiacts from the movie also. Robby Benson plays the ill-fated Billie Joe. But the most shocking person in the whole story is.......

Roscoe P. Coltrane - the sheriff of Hazzard County. No, I have not gotten my redneck stories confused. James Best (the actor who portrayed RPC) played Dewey Barksdale. he ends up being the reason that Billie Joe is so disturbed that he has to do himself in. I can't tell you what that is because I said this would be a PG blog, but lets just say I was so astrounded that the minute it was revealed in the movie I picked up the phone and called my buddy/ college roommate "SB". We were both flabbergasted. Just go watch the movie.

The bridge. there are lots of Tallahatchie bridges. They are everywhere. I think about Billie Joe when I cross them.

Is the story true? Probably not - but it does make you wonder.

Today Billie Joe McAllister jumped off the Tallahatchie Bridge..................

Monday, June 1, 2009

Queen Elizabeth's got a brand new bag ...........Hey!

Yesterday it was hats - today it is purses!

I am not one of women who just has to have lots of purses and shoes. I just need a good purse that will hold all my stuff and will pretty much match most of my outfits.

I have often wondered about the Queen's handbag - not necessarily the choice. We all know that the QE2 doesn't just go out shopping to find her a good purse that will hold all her stuff. She has the best "bag people" in Britain personally bring the goods to the palace like a Kelly's Kids party and she has to place an order. Mostly I see pictures of HRH with a nice, sensible black purse with a strap slung into the crook of her arm. She also usually has black shoes to match. The purse is age appropriate and well proportioned.

So, you wonder what is my thing with her purse? The answer is what is IN her purse!

My purse holds the following all the time: pens, wallet(money, debit card, check book), highlighters, lipstick, multiple miscellaneous lists, a 10ft measuring tape, and sunglasses. At other times it has also been know to hold: books, earrings, a small blanket, can drinks, ez grader, and candy. This is my stuff.

So, what is QE2's stuff?

Does she carry a wallet? We do know that she drives so she does have a license, but does she carry it around with her all the time? If she gets caught in a road block does she have to have her DL out of her wallet and her proof of insurance? Probably not - she is the Queen. Does she carry any money with her? Like I said above- her shopping adventures are private trunk shows - so no. Most likely she does not have credit cards with her either. She might not even have these at all.

Lipstick. Does she carry an extra tube of her favorite "Love my Lips" shade in her black bag? If it is there it would be a huge royal faux pas to apply lipstick where you could possibly be spotted by the press. So maybe that is a no.

Kleenex. Women love to stuff Kleenex in their purses. It is used to blot your lips, blow your nose, and in a pinch spot clean a dirty 2 year old before going into a store. Can you imagine QE2 blowing her nose at a reception? Even if she did, she would not use the lowly Kleenex. She would use a handkerchief with her crest upon it.

Pictures of her grandchildren. Are you kidding me? We (the public) probably know more about her grandchildren than she does. Anyway, I don't think Olan Mills jumps the pond to set up a kiosks in London.

So, the answer is still unknown. What is in her purse? The world may never know.