August 12th, 2021

“ Dobré ráno”, or “Good Morning!” in Czech, a Western Slavic language spoken mainly in the Czech Republic.

Spent all day Monday smoking a big ole pork butt. Pork butt has to the funnest cut of meat to say and when smoked right, provides THE BESTEST pulled pork Bar B Que for sandwiches in the world! WeeeHa! Nothing like getting up at 6am to get the smoker set to get my redneck juices flowing! Anyone got a chew! Hehehe… just kidding but I do love me some good bar b sue!

This week I learned some stuff:
• Made it through my annual physical with a modicum of dignity intact (once she quit laughing!). All kidding aside, no new maladies were discovered or discussed. Just trying to keep truckin!
• August 12th is the 224th day of 2021. Just 135 days till Christmas! Today in 1851, Isaac Singer is granted a patent for his sewing machine; Today in 1865, Joseph Lister, British surgeon and scientist, performs 1st antiseptic surgery; Today in 1944, Lest we forget! Nazi German troops end the week-long Wola massacre, during which time at least 40,000 people are killed indiscriminately or in mass executions; Today in 1953, First thermonuclear bomb test: The Soviet atomic bomb project continues with the detonation of “RDS-6s” (Joe 4) using a “layered” scheme; On this day in 1964, South Africa is banned from the Olympic Games due to the country’s racist policies; Today in 1981, the IBM Personal Computer is released; Today in 1985, Sue, the largest and most complete Tyrannosaurus rex skeleton found to date, is discovered by Sue Hendrickson in South Dakota; The Russian Navy submarine Kursk explodes and sinks in the Barents Sea during a military exercise, killing her entire 118-man crew today in 2000; Today in 1860, Klara Hitler, Austrian mother of Adolf Hitler (in case you didn’t think he had one) was born; Today in 1881, Cecil B. DeMille, American director and producer was born; Norris and Ross McWhirter, Scottish publishers and activists co-founded the Guinness World Records were born on this day in 1925; Buck Owens, American singer-songwriter and guitarist was born today in 1928;In 1933 Parnelli Jones, American race car driver and businessman was born today; Born today in 1945,Dorothy E. Denning, American computer scientist and academic, pioneer in cyber security; Mark Knopfler, Scottish-English singer-songwriter, guitarist, and producer was born today in 1949; Pat Metheny, American jazz guitarist and composer was also born today but in 1954; Cleopatra, Egyptian queen passed away today in 30 BC; We lost William Blake, English poet and painter today in 1827; Jack (John F.) Kennedy’s big brother, Joseph P. Kennedy Jr., American lieutenant and pilot passed away today in 1944; Les Paul, American guitarist and songwriter played his last on this day in 2009: And finally, we lost, Lauren Bacall, American model, actress, and singer on this day in 2014.

Website Update:
Restarting the cycle this week:
• Last week for our “New” Vocabulary Quiz
• Week 2 for our “New” Musical Trivia Quiz
• This week I didn’t come up with any new recipes to share. I might have mentioned earlier I did smoke the Pork Butt and made some MONDO BBQ!
• This week’s Home Page quote comes from Joseph Conrad, “Being a woman is a terribly difficult task, since it consists principally in dealing with men.”

Writing, Ceramics, Stained Glass and Painting Update:
• I have started to sketch what I am calling “Chen’s Bridge” for painting this week. I have what I need for the arches I think. I looked into a CAD (computer aid design) to getting the stencils done but abandoned the idea. I am re-starting on hand designs.
• Grandpa Stories is still not re-published.

• Last Sunday was fun!!! I mentioned that last month, I rediscovered my Bonsai mojo and attending the SDBC meeting was really fun for me. Well, 3 generations of McCann’s attended our first Beginning Bonsai class together. Its a pretty cool format. They assigned us a Bonsai Master, Gary, (who reminds me a lot of my old friend Larry Clayton!), gave us all a tree, some chopsticks, pruning scissors and a lovely book. Due to Covid, these Junipers were a year older than what most beginner classes have. We spend our first class, pruning back unwanted growth and trying to find our tree’s front. We have more work to do but I think we all had fun.

Music Update:

Once again, yours truly takes you on another meander through the dusty cobwebs of my music library.

This week’s UJT Radio Program:
• Jethro Tull — Skating Away (On the Ice of a New Day) — This is an acoustic version of a song my bro, Mike shared with me this week. The original was a bonus cut from “War Child” released in 1974. This version is from a 2007 release, “The Best of Acoustic Jethro Tull”. Thanks Bro!
• Cold Play — Yellow — It was a perfect collision!! This song came up on my UJT turntable just as the text suggesting it came in from bro Mike. It was destiny! This is from their “Parachutes” album released in 2000 and was a pretty big commercial hit for them.
• Cat Stevens — Sad Lisa — From the Vinyl !!! This is a beautifully sad song from this “Tea for the Tillerman” album released in 1970. There have been lots of rumors about the songs intended meaning. Some say it is about his autistic sister others say its about himself. We lost Cat Stevens to tuberculosis very early in his career but he was already a star. He was hospitalized for months and when released Cat was gone and Yusuf, a devout muslim emerged. Yusuf still plays the song in concert.
• Tears for Fears — Everybody Wants to Rule the World — This one is a favorites from this timely and refreshing band. There is just something about their music that grabs me. This one is from their 1985 release, “Songs from the Big Chair”.
• Mat Kearney — All I Have — My daughter, Jess, got me hooked on Mat’s music. I hope you enjoy this song as much as I do. This one is from his, “City of Black & White” released in 2009.
• Jack Johnson — Questions — Jack is just his own dude! But I really enjoy the unique way he writes his songs, plays and sings along with his guitar. This one is from his, “Sing-A-Longs & Lullabies For The Film Curious George” released in 2006.

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