April 6th, 2024

“ Dobroho ranku”, or “Good Morning!” in Ukrainian, an Eastern Slavic language spoken mainly in Ukraine.  I have decided that the UJT will remain focused on Ukraine until we can all rejoice at the end of hostilities.  It has been 791 days since Russia invaded Ukraine.

This week I learned some stuff:

    • Jessica got a reprieve from being our family chauffeur,. BJ and his silver beast are back on the road. She still has to ferry my butt up north for our GLCP&L poker games but she says she doesn’t mind the ride and sometimes can visit with Darrian.
    • Jessica and I went to see the second installment of Dune in the theater this week. It seems like years since I have had that experience. I enjoyed the 2nd part better than the first and I am looking forward to the 3rd part as it seems to be about my favorite character.
    • You can find out all about today in history here.

This week’s Website Update: 

    • This week’s update includes some more updated recipes. I found mistakes in our Beef Broccoli Stir Fry. This week I remembered a dinner we used to enjoy back in they, English muffin Pizza. I wrote it down for you but it was kind of a flop this week. I didn’t toast the muffins enough, and my idea for a group pizza-building kind of party thing never took off. I included it in this week’s update. I hope you have better luck with it than I did.
    • The Home Page quote for this week’s wisdom is from one of my lifelong heroes, Bob Ross: “Sometimes you can learn more from making a mistake than you can when you try so hard.”. Bob called mistakes, happy little accidents”. I am a man of few heroes. I started with plenty- Davey Crocket, Daniel Boone, President Lincoln, Marie Currie, and lots of others. Many if not most of my early heroes had great character and courage in the face of the unknown or even the certainly of failure. They cared about more than themselves. But over the years, my heroes diminished into mostly good men or women who meant well sometimes. A different kind of hero profile emerged in their place. Gentleness mattered. Selflessness superseded self-promotion in all things. Their first instinct was to give of themselves bravely. They didn’t need followers necessarily. If people followed, it was the principles that inspired them. Fred Rogers, Jimmy, and Roslyn Carter, and yes, a retired Airfare Sgt who liked to show others how to paint. Fred, Bob, and Roslyn are all gone now but I am still following and learning from them.

Writing, Bonsai Trees, Stained Glass, and Painting Update:  

    • Not much happening in this space right now. I have a bonsai, stayed glass, and painting project in my head but procrastination has a firm hold on me.  It took me almost 2 months of sickness and lallygagging to get the wisteria pruned. I think it is just one of those, “One foot in front of the other” starting thing but my feet aren’t listening so far.


    • Something strange in the neighborhood! (Did you know there was a new Ghostbusters movie out?) In our neighborhood, our dog Murphy suddenly has become the target for his two feline roommates. Claws out aggressive attacks that leave Murphy with scratches on his face, and chest that bleed some.  So far he has just barked loudly when this has happened but at some point, these boys are going to find out what a boxer bite feels like. We felt grateful that our beasties seemed to acclimate and like each other up to now.

Music Update:  

For your listening pleasure:  STOPPED HERE!

This week’s UJT Radio Program:

    • Traffic — Low Spark of High Heel Boys— When this one came up on the rotation, (on my new speakers !!!), I realized we hadn’t featured this one few years on UJT Radio. The haunting melody and Steve Winwood’s high voice interweave as if by magic. I know in 1971 when I first heard this song I thought it was magic! This is also one of my friend, Mike Fallin’s favorite songs.
    • Jack Johnson Feat. Ben HarperWith My Own Two Hands This just a beautiful song!! Please listen to the lyrics and let them empower you to reach out for more happiness in this moment, push back against evil, or hug someone who needs it This one is from Hack’s 2008 release, “Sing-A-Longs & Lullabies For The Film Curious George”.
    • New Riders of the Purple Sage – Glendale Train — Even before the Grateful Dead, Jerry Garcia used to hang out and play gigs with a rather interesting character by the name of David Nelson (no not Ricky’s older brother). They both wandered around and formed different bands. NRPS included some of the original GD members on their first album but it slowly became their own sound. I like this story about the benefits and perils of train robbery a lot. I hope you do too. Jerry Garcia plays the slide on this one. This one is from NRPS’ first album, “New Riders of the Purple Sage” released in 1971.
    • Rig & Rich — 8th of November — This song just moves me. I think it was my friend Darryl Datte who told me about these guys. I love their harmonies!  I am not a huge country guy but good is good wherever you find it. This song is on their 2005 release, “Comin’ to Your City”
    • Barcelona — Falling Out of Trees —  This is another pretty song that you probably never heard of. I really like this one. It’s from their 2005 release, “Absolutes”.
    • Doug Smith  — Lost in the Here and Now — If you enjoy pretty acoustic guitar music as I do, this is a song for you. This one is off their 2007 release, “Labyrinth”.

That’s it… Do the best you can; Laugh every chance you get; Always remember… The best is yet to come! As always, thank you for being my friend!