August 29th, 2019

“K’abį́ nezų ʔédúhų́n k’ą́mbį́ ɂedlánet’é” or “Good Morning!!!” in Chipewyan, a Northern Athabaskan language spoken in parts of northern Canada.

This week I enjoyed another flashback to my days as a boy growing up in South Florida. Actually, it was Chris Spain’s beautiful shot of the moon rising bright over Seagrapes into the coconut trees that triggered it. Sling Shots were a big deal to us boys of a certain age. We dreamed of fancy Wrist Rockets firing ball bearings at Moose, Bears, Gators and Elk. But we just had homemade plywood ones with strips of inner tube for the sling part. Our targets were mostly milk bottles and the safest tweety birds in the woods. But our ammo, now that was a different story. We imagined kids up north were limited to rocks and of course, acorns, both of which are perfectly acceptable sling shot ammo. But being young lads of South Florida, we had all of those AND green Seagrape berries and Royal Palm nuts!!! They were some super good flying projectiles. We only missed most of what we aimed at by inches where rocks and acorns seemed to want to wander at distance.

I am still adjusting to my severing the cable decision but with every passing day, I am more impressed with the content available via streaming. This week I enjoyed several hours of YouTubing videos of great musicians’ shows and probably the best Rose Bowl game ever played between USC and Texas in 2006. I am finding old friends (tv shows) that I watched when my kids were little. Our Sling TV deal came with this very cool Local TV antenna! You just hook this bad boy up in any high window facing the local TV towers, connect it to your WiFi via the Sling mobile app and bingo, you have all your local broadcast stations, including the 3 PBS stations, MeTV and somethings I had never heard of such as COZI tv and THIS tv which feature other old TV shows. Living cable-less is good.

Another old friend of mine chimed in to send me best wishes for my sorry carcass to return to its normal semi-ruined state and she came bearing gifts!!!! Quite some time ago, I reported my reading and impressions of Dan Brown’s, “Origins”. One part of enjoying the book was that I had been to at least some of the places mentioned and his attention to detail made returning to those contexts so much richer. Evidently, someone else agreed and they have a website that allows to see images of the places he visited by chapter. I think its very cool. Check it out here.

This week I learned some stuff:
• Monday was National Dog Day. If you have ever been a doggy parent or perhaps pet human, you will celebrate this day with a wonderful mix of love, joy and sadness for those who have left us. Can you remember the names of all your dogs?
• Today, August 29th is ACCORDING TO HOYLE DAY which encourages individuals to honor the rules and regulations in particular situations. Holye was the only ruleset though. Remember, The Marquess of Queensberry Rules are a code of generally accepted rules in the sport of boxing. But you get the idea, play fair and all that… there’s a good chap!
• I joined AARP some time ago. I did it to get some geezer discount that I no longer remember. I started to get a new magazine to ignore each month. I recycled. I came very close to reading the thing the month they featured Bob Dylan on the cover. It was close but I just snickered thinking how ironic that this rebel with lots of causes suddenly became mainstream when he got to geezer status. This month was kind of like that. Woodstock turned 50 and Carlos Santana turned like a 70something. Anyway, I opened it up anded up reading it from cover to cover, only getting pissed off once..when I saw that add for the emergency alert button. That add on TV and even in print is just such a blatant play on geezer fear that it pisses me off. Honestly, I would rather die waiting for discovery than perpetuate such a shitty business model. But I digress! If you are an AARP member, check out the magazine. If not, never mind.

Website Update:
• Week two for our “New” Vocabulary Quiz!
• Woohoo!!! We have a New UJT Music Trivia Quiz! Since August 15-18 is the fifty year anniversary of Woodstock, check out your knowledge of the event in this Music Trivia Quiz. Some of the songs introduced to us at Woodstock are also featured this week’s UJT Radio show.
• This week I add some recipes – Beef Pepper Stir Fry and updated the yummy Cauliflower Au Gratin.

Writing, Ceramics and Painting Update:
• I started one of Chis’ pictures but really didn’t get much painted nor did I create any ceramics. The new school schedule starts soon!
• Grandpa Stories is still not re-published.

• Back in the Paleolithic era when Pat, my little brother, The Piltdown Man and I were all going to Coral Gables Elementary, we would wake up in the middle of the night to sound of one or both of our stomachs growling. We were skinny but serious little eating machines. My mom made sure that we had lots of cheap food and sent us to bed full every night. But sometimes one or both of us would grow 4 or 5 inches before breakfast and need refueling late at night. This was tricky business because money was very tight payday to payday. Everything in our refrigerator and cupboard was part of Mom’s intricate plan to feed us until next payday. We would get into trouble for instance, if some unnamed individual or individuals would stand in the open refrigerator door and split a brand new gallon jug of milk after school. Mom had plans for every ounce of that milk – breakfast cereals, soups or something else. Back then there was just milk or chocolate milk or buttermilk, no one was adding things or managing fat content yet. For ~$.99 you could buy a gallon jug of milk from Farm Fresh. But I digress. If we wanted to snack in the middle of the night, we figured out that their was only one safe selection – Peanut Buttler! Mom always bought the 55 gallon family sized drum of crunchy peanut butter that she never used in any of her recipes except when she made us PB&Js. Whatever bread we had was included in her meal plan, so we would just take big spoonfuls and lick them like a peanut flavored lollipops. I have to tell you, it was just about the best tasting thing a boy cold have at 2am on a school night.

Music Update:

Once again this week, I have created a very nice collection of song samples that I think celebrate life in a grand way!

Go to this week’s UJT Radio program.
• John Denver — Paradise — From the Vinyl!!! I heard this old John Prine tune first at a little folk bar on Olney Ave in Ghent, Norfolk, VA by the name of the Red Mule. I believe the guy playing that night was Russ Kirkpatrick. I love the song and now have heard John Prine and John Denver do it live as well. James Taylor has a beautiful song about the same subject called, “Copperline”. I apologize to all those who came after us and will miss out on seeing some of these places in the pastoral pure beauty as we did when we were just children exploring.
• Dire Straits — On Every Street — The title track for their final studio album, On Every Street released in 1991. It was to be the band’s last studio album. I was fortunate to watch them play it in Dallas later that year. I love how the band weaves and builds the voice, guitar, piano and sax up and around us like folding and unfolding a kaleidoscopic tapestry of sound. Commercially, it actually did very well selling over 15million copies but nothing like “Brothers in Arms” which remains one of the industry’s top selling albums of all time.
• Marcia Ball — How You Carry On – One of my poker buddies enjoyed the Tab Benoit selection last week and suggested I check out the early work of this lady. He was right. She has a great voice, plays a fine piano and loves swamp blues and zydeco music. This one is from her 1989 release, “Gatorhythms”.
• Linda Ronstadt — Poor Poor Pitiful Me — Always one of my favorites, Linda made this kind of her theme song for awhile. This was from her “The Capital Years” best of album released in 2006.
• Ten Years After – I’m Going Home (Live) — Woodstock was 50 years ago, but anyone who saw the movie or bought the soundtrack will remember the day Alvin Lee became a guitar legend. This is a live version from one of their Ten Years After Best of albums.
• Richie Havens — Freedom — This is another live version of Richie’s song that opened Woodstock on August 15th 1969. I always found his open tuning method of playing guitar fascinating. It seemed he had like a 9 inch thumb that he would cover the fret board with and just move up and down accompanying his singing.
• Jefferson Airplane — Volunteers — Another cut from one of my favorite Woodstock players. I loved watching Marty Balen and Grace Slick sing with Paul Kanter on rhythm and Jorma Kaukonen, on lead guitars and Jack Casady on bass. This was the title cut for their album released in 1969.

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!