Saturday, December 31, 2011

"Tobacco Road"

I grew up near "tobacco road" in Simsbury, Connecticut near these shade tobacco barns used to cure tobacco for cigar wrappers. You may be familiar with the song "Tobacco Road" as sung by "The Animals" and lead singer Eric Burden of England during the 1960's. I guess that song must have described a different "tobacco road" than the shade tobacco fields and tobacco sheds of the Farmington River Valley; as the song lyrics don't seem to match my experiences. In the song I guess poor Eric had quite the tough life as he describes being born in a shack, a drunk father, dead mother, owning nothing but the clothes on his back  and tobacco road being a mean ol' place.  Although Eric describes a rough place which he hates but also loves because its home; in contrast to the "Occupy Wall street " band of gypsies, Eric says he will get a job and rebuild his life and change his tough background for the better.  Yes, on his own "with the help and the grace from above" Eric vows to better himself.  Perhaps you too can learn from this song and try to improve your life and community as even on tobacco road work and effort can be rewarded and when you sit around waiting for a "handout" often times a lazy attitude leads to shattered unrealistic dreams that go up in smoke.

Sunday, December 25, 2011

Christmas Eve

 Here's a photo of the stained glass window in back of the Simsbury United Methodist pulpit taken on Christmas Eve. This church was constructed in 1909 in Simsbury Center.

Candle Light

 Lighting the church candles for the "Candlelight Service" on Christmas Eve.  December 25th is the first day where the days start to get longer after the "Winter Solstice". Solstice is Spanish means "steady Sun"and in Winter marks the shortest amount of daylight. The days will start to get longer now until the first day of Summer and the Summer Solstice after which the days start to get shorter.

Christmas Eve Service

Here's a photo of the Christmas Eve church service at the Simsbury United Methodist Church. There was an "overflow crowd" for this "Candlelight service" and my parents and I ended up sitting "Up on Stage" so to speak in the seating usually reserved for the choir. There were two selections from the carillon bells group, along with an extended flute and piano selection during Communion in addition to music selections from the massive pipe organ and the youth choir.

Thursday, December 22, 2011

"Eyes Wide Shut"

Body Found In South Jersey Lake Identified « CBS Philly Saw this story today on the "Drudge Report" of a lady who aparently while sleepwalking walked out of her house in her pajamas in the middle of the night, walked down the neighborhood street and then fell off of a railroad trestle into a lake below and drowned. Now, I'm not sure how someone can be asleep and do this without bumping into something along the way such as the curb, a mailbox, a car (moving or stationary), a discarded can or bottle, or a million other potential hazards as well as turning at the proper time on the road to go to the railroad bridge and then get out on this bridge probably about halfway then fall in for the ultimate "wet dream" and then die. The video shows that lady's car had a dent on the left front bumper. Maybe this lady hit something that made her so upset that she wanted to die. Maybe this lady was a very skilled sleepwalker and this was a tragic accident.

There is a television show called "1,000 Ways To Die" that I have seen a few times, perhaps you have as well where they describe unusual ways that people have died over the years. Although the subject matter is somewhat "morbid" to say the least; this show is actually quite funny and interesting as they recreate the way the people have died and describe in detail the cause of death.

What do you think happened in this case? There were no witnesses to see this lady fall into the lake with her "eyes wide shut". Similar to the old song "Ode to Billie Joe" where Billie Joe McAllister up on Choctaw Ridge threw something off of the Tallahatchee Bridge and jumped off the bridge as sung by Bobbie Gentry; yeah baby, we may never know the real story. Oh well, please pass the biscuits.

Monday, December 19, 2011

"Another Trip Around the Sun"

I'm getting ready for another trip around the Sun; and, to record my progress I thought I should buy a calendar for the year 2012. Now, some people such as the ancient Mayan culture and calendar say that the world or at least the current epoch of cosmic consciousness will end on December 21,2012 at 11:00 am. or so although they don't say whether the 11:00 hour is Eastern Standard Time, Pacific Time, Mountain Time,  Greenwich Mean Time or any other specific time zone or what happens when part of the world is already the next day with the International Date line.  We shall see what happens and I thought that I should splurge and go for the complete year 2012 calendar and not the abbreviated December  2012 calendar in case the world doesn't end.

I picked up this calendar today at "Ocean State Job Lot" for only $2.00 plus tax whereas my previous calendar which was the same size as this one for 2011 cost me approximately $7.50 plus tax at "Staples". So, already I'm on my way to hopefully a more efficient year as not only did I save money on the cost of the 2012 calendar but I saved approximately 25 miles of wear and tear on my car, approximately $3.13 in gasoline cost and approximately 57 minutes of time.... and as the old saying goes, "Time is Money." Another great feature of my new 2012 calendar is the fact that this calendar has 366 days compared with the old 2011 calendar which only had 365 days so the 2012 calendar is of greater time value. Plus, even though this 2012 calendar cost me less than the 2011 calendar it still has the same notes on it as far as significant holidays and important days such as "Boxing Day" and the beginning of "Kwanzaa" both which happen to fall on December 26th. Now, I know many people are fans of boxing, and the world lost a true champion boxing warrior with the passing of "Smokin' Joe Frasier" in 2011; but I didn't know that boxing had a special day and this "Boxing Day" seems to be only celebrated in England and Canada for some reason so I'm not quite sure why "Boxing Day" is noted on calendars sold in America.

Without my new calendar I wouldn't have known that "Administrative Professionals Day" in the US is celebrated on April 25th, and "Civic Holiday" is celebrated on August 6th in Canada. I guess those Canadians really love their Honda Civic cars if they have a Holiday each year and maybe August 6th is when the new Honda Civics hit the Canadian Auto dealer's showrooms. I don't know.

Yes, another year around the Sun. They say something  like the old expression if I have remembered it correctly, which I am not sure: "Time flies like an arrow..., and fruit flies like bananas" Let's hope in 2012 the world keeps existing and doesn't go bananas.

Saturday, December 17, 2011

"Oyster Spoon"

Here's a photo of the fried oyster appetizer found at the "Del Mar" restaurant in Chatham, Cape Cod. Rather a  unique presentation as each oyster is presented on kind of a modified spoon with chopped cabbage underneath the oyster. The "Del Mar" restaurant location started out as a "Friendly's", then became the upscale restaurant "Roo Bar" .

Thursday, December 15, 2011

"Tune A Guitar"

Here's a photo of the seared Tuna entree available at "The Red Pheasant" restaurant in Dennis, Mass. Tuna is good to eat, and good for you as well as a source of Omega 3 among other things and fish is considered to be a "brain food". Tuna though does make for a lousy musical instrument as you just can't "tune it". As the old saying goes... "You can tune a guitar.... But, you can't tuna fish".

Tuesday, December 13, 2011


During the holiday season it is a good time to reflect on the things that make you glad, things that make you wonder, things that are pleasurable and fun, and things that you can try to do to make the world a better place.

"Jingle Bells" is a holiday song that seems to capture the festive mood of the Winter Season. Here are a few other "jingles" that may ring a bell with you.

"Oh, FAB, I'm glad they put extra lemon Borax in you!"

"You'll wonder where the yellow went when you brush your teeth with Pepsodent!

"Double your please, double your fun. with doublemint,doublemint, doublemint gum!"

"I'd like to teach the world to sing in perfect harmony. I'd like to buy the world a COKE and keep it company. That's the real thing."

So, this holiday season I hope you too will have clean clothes after using FAB and remember to brush your teeth with Pepsodent; especially after chewing Doublemint gum or drinking a Coke.

For me, I can't buy the world a Coke, sorry just don't have the money. Buying 7 BILLION people a Coke does add up and I just can't afford it right now even if the Cokes were a nickel apiece.

Sunday, December 11, 2011

Red Pheasant Duck

I had "the duck" at "The Red Pheasant" restaurant recently. Why a duck? Why not. I was game... and so was the duck. I used to order duck at "Christian's" in Chatham, but that restaurant is no longer open.

Nutty Pear with Cheese

Here's a photo of an interesting dessert I had recently at "The Red Pheasant " restaurant in Dennis. This is a cored pear filled with blue cheese, walnuts and I think a raspberry sauce. It was good.

Saturday, December 10, 2011

December in Dennis Port near Dusk

I was the only one who went in the water this December 5th day in Dennis Port near Dusk. For some reason no one was swimming today today but this same beach has lots of swimmers during the Summer. I like the ocean and today I thought the water was really cool.

Friday, December 2, 2011

"Bird Siren"

"Come hither" this bird siren seems to say at least in the bird brains of a few birds who are tempted by the sheer perceived beauty of this painted wood bird which eternally rests inside my picture window. Yes, some birds can't resist this bird temptress like the Sirens of Greek Mythology, half bird, half beautifull woman, who used to lure ancient sailors to their death as they either die of hunger or their boats crashed upon the impassable reefs from the beauty and sweet Siren song.  In this case however, birds are lured into crashing into the clear glass in front of this bird as they usually snap their neck upon impact. See the post below however, of the first bird I have seen to "cheat Death" at least for a while longer.

Now, not having eyes on the side of my head like a bird; I'm not sure if these crashing birds can't see the window glass until it is too late or maybe see this painted wooden bird from afar and figure that there is no glass there as this bird is just sitting there. I don't know if the birds just want to investigate and see what the wooden bird is doing or if they figure there must be some good bugs or seeds to eat near this bird. I think in the case of the downed bird below which appears to be some kind of hawk, this hawk was probably trying to attack this poor defenseless wooden bird and rip its throat for a fresh tasty meal. Perhaps this hawk wanted to befriend this bird as both the wood bird and the hawk have brown and white features and as the saying goes; "birds of a feather flock together". Or, maybe this hawk couldn't hear this wooden bird's sweet song and wanted to get closer to hear the seductive tune and just couldn't stop in time. I don't know. Beats me.

"Window Thumping"

Yesterday this big bird crashed into my picture window shortly before dusk and fell to the ground below. Every so often this happens and usually smaller birds die when they hit this window as they snap their neck. This bird however although at first appeared to be dead when I went out side after a minute or two and gave it a gentle poke it started to move and later hid itself underneath a small bush. The next morning this bird was gone. I wonder if this bird is a fan of the alternative rock group "Chumbawamba" from Leeds, England  and their popular song "Tubthumbing". I don't know if you all recall the lyrics of "Tubthumping" but the main memorable refrain is: I get knocked down
                                 But I get up again
                                 You're never going to keep me down.

Good words to live by whether you are a bird or even a human.