June 9th, 2022

“ Dobroho ranku”, or “Good Morning!” in Ukrainian, an Eastern Slavic language spoken mainly in Ukraine. I have decided to maintain the UJT will focus on Ukraine until we can all rejoice in the end of hostilities. It has been 105 days since Russia attacked Ukraine.

Before we start this week, I would like to congratulate Queen Elisabeth and her loyal subjects on achieving their Platinum Jubilee. I have spent considerable time inside the UK and enjoyed her subjects at various times and places around the world. Well Done!

All of our airline travelers returned home with COVID-19. We don’t know which strain but everyone pretty much feels like crap and are self isolating as much as we can within the same household. I think this is Darrian and BJ’s second bout. But all made it home safe and are recuperating. We are all on self quarantine until the duration. When I say quarantine I mean – Tippy is isolated in her room as she is the most vulnerable, Jess and the kids remain upstairs with the cats and when food is required we work out an touches routine. Georgie and I inhabit the downstairs. So far so good.

This week I learned some stuff:
• June 9th is the 160th day of 2022. Just 208 days till Christmas! Today in 1862, Stonewall Jackson concludes his successful Shenandoah Valley Campaign with a victory in the Battle of Port Republic; his tactics during the campaign are now studied by militaries around the world; Today in 1930, a Chicago Tribune reporter, Jake Lingle, is killed during rush hour at the Illinois Central train station by Leo Vincent Brothers, allegedly over a $100,000 gambling debt owed to Al Capone; In 1959 on this day, The USS George Washington (SSBN) is launched. It is the first nuclear-powered ballistic missile submarine; Today in 1967, Israel captures the Golan Heights from Syria in the 6 Day War; In 1968 on this day, President Lyndon B. Johnson declares a national day of mourning following the assassination of Senator Robert F. Kennedy; Today in 1973, Secretariat wins the U.S. Triple Crown; Today in 1836, Elizabeth Garrett Anderson, the first woman to qualify as an English physician and politician was born; Born today in 1891, Cole Porter, American composer and songwriter: Born today in 1902, Skip James, American singer-songwriter and guitarist; Les Paul, American guitarist, inventor and songwriter was born today in 1915; Robert McNamara, American businessman and politician, 8th United States Secretary of Defense was born today in 1916;Calvin “Fuzz” Jones, American singer and bass player was born today in 1926; Happy Rockefeller, American philanthropist, 31st Second Lady of the United States also born today in 1926; Gregory Maguire, American author (The Life and Times of the Wicked Witch of the West) was born today in 1954; Patricia Cornwell, American journalist and author was born today in 1956; Michael J. Fox, Canadian-American actor, producer, and author was born today in 1961; Today in 1963, Johnny Depp, American actor was born; Natalie Portman, Israeli-American actress was born today in 1981; Prolific John Creasey, English author and politician passed away today in 1973; Andrés Segovia, Spanish guitarist passed away today in 1987; Today in 2010, Ken Brown, British guitarist who was a member of The Quarrymen passed away; And lastly, today in 2017, Adam West, American actor (AKA Batman) and investor passed away.

Website Update:
This week:
• Week Two for our new Vocabulary Quiz
• COVID interfered with our new Musical Trivia Quiz… maybe next week
• I was able to come up with a couple of new recipes before I got sick – Coconut Pineapple Bread and Coconut Sour Cream.
• The Home Page quote this week is from one of my musical authors, Mary Gautier said, “Songs are here to help us: they build bridges from heart to heart.”.

Writing, Ceramics, Stained Glass and Painting Update:
• I am still not happy with the first version of Lori’s Barn and did a new sketch. I worked on the Chris Spain Heron picture some more. I also laid out a scaled down versions and cut out the templates. Then I got sick. Wish me luck!
• I am continuing my streak of slacking off on the paper edits of Grandpa Stories. I just haven’t carved out any time for more chapters.

Its an eerie feeling when I got my Covid-19 results back as positive almost exactly 6 months after Jack passed from complications of COVID. He died within 30days of his 70th birthday and my 70th is this Sunday. Just spooky!

Music Update:
This weeks mix is another reflection of the parts of life that mean the most.

This week’s UJT Radio Program:
• Mary Gautier — Still on the Ride — This is one the songs that Mary did with a soldier during a Songwriters with Soldiers session. She met Josh Geartz he was in a wheel chair 2 weeks past his last suicide attempt. Through the process SWS uses Josh was able to connect with the feelings of survivors guilt that had been plaguing him since his days in the service. Writing this song with Mary was jus the catharsis Josh needed. Since then, he rolled 422 miles to raise money for veteran suicide awareness. Continued his rehabilitation to the extent that he now walks without assistance. Reading about Josh and the other soldiers Mary has helped through SWS was so inspiring for me. This one comes from her 2018 release, “Rifles and Rosary Beads”.
• Matt Kearny — All I Have — This guy keeps impressing me. I just like his music. This one is from his 2009 release, “City of Black & White (Deluxe Version)”.
• Tony Joe White — Ol’ Mother Earth — Way a head of his time, this wonderfully gifted songwriter captured a reverence for our planet that I don’t think has been matched. This one is from his 1973 release, “Homemade Ice Cream”.
• Eric Clapton – The Old Man and Me (feat. Tom Petty) – This is a beautiful tribute to one of our great songwriters by 2 other great songwriters. This one comes from his 2014 release, “The Breeze: An Appreciation of JJ Cale”.
• Bob Seger & The Silver Bullet Band – Travelin’ Man (Live) — Sometimes you just need a Bob Seger hit! This was originally released on “Beautiful Looser” released in 1975. This live version is from their 2011 release, “Ultimate Hits: Rock and Roll Never Forgets”.
• Bruce Hornsby — The Longest Night — Bruce is just so tight! Pat Metheny plays guitar on this one too. This is a hot tune from his solo effort released in 1994, “Hot House”.

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!