Saturday, June 27, 2009

Farrah T. Bassett

A co-worker and I were grieving the loss of Farrah Fawcett Thursday. She was THE sex symbol of our youth. My mother and I had many go-rounds about what kinds of entertainment magazines I could purchase (the legal kind for my age), posters I could display, and TV shows I could watch.

In reading her obit, I saw where she only appeared in 22 episodes of Charlie's Angels - THE show for which she is best known. I had no idea it was that few and figured she was in oh, about a hunnerd of 'em.

My co-worker said Farrah's appearance in her 22 episodes was analogous to Howard Morris' appearance as Ernest T. Bass in only about a half-dozen episodes of The Andy Griffith Show. Both made a big impact during their limited time on the shows. As I sat there with a stunned look on my face, he quickly backed up and clarified that's the only thing comparable between the two.

Now, I'll be the first to say The Andy Griffith is my all-time favorite TV show - and Ernest T. is among my favorite characters. And I'll also say Farrah is entrenched at #1 as the celeb who turned the most RPMs for me as a young'un.

But there isn't ANYTHING comparable between ...

Ernest T.

and Farrah

On the other hand, I am open to a debate about the hotness of Peggy McMillan, Andy Taylor's girlfriend for a while. I have always been bent with Andy for giving her up for Miss Ice Queen, Helen Crump.


Tuesday, June 23, 2009

A Modern Day Sinner amongst the Latter Day Saints

Jay Graham has been on an around-the-world tour for the last year where he has had some magnificient experiences, taken some great pics, and blogged some great memories. If you haven't gotten to know him or read his stories - do so.

I'm a domestic kind of guy myself. Except for a couple of trips over the years to the Caribbean, Bermuda, London, and Rome, I'm pretty much a USA homeboy. So while I'll likely never go to Australia, Vietnam, Cambodia, Rio, Cairo, etc., I'll be content with my own share of domestic travel thankyaverymuch.

Last week took me back to Salt Lake City. Other than a couple of plane changes in SLC returning from Idaho, I was last in Salt Lake 13 years ago. It didn't take long to re-familiarize myself with how rugged yet majestic the Wasatch mountain range is.

The last time I was in SLC I couldn't simply order a drink at a restaurant. Because of the heavy influence from the Mormon church, alcohol could only be served at private clubs. Leave it to legislators who generally create at least 2 problems for every 1 they try to solve and to the ingenuity of business owners, restauranteurs and their attorneys determined customers could join the "private clubs" of restaurants simply by filling out a piece of paper (the club's application) and paying about 5 bucks admission dues. So while not a big deal, it was a bit comical and too bureaucratic.

When I returned this time, all of that was gone. You could order a beer, glass of wine, mixed drink, whatever. Not sure when they did away with the silliness of it all, but I'm guessing it was around the time of the Olympics. Funny how that works - how the allure of tourism dollars by the cubic ton can top the priorities of the supposed moral guardians of the community.

Having said that, I guess some establishments still have to crawl before they walk, or perhaps these challenging economic times have forced hotels to challenge every cost. When I arrived at the Homewood Suites hotel, I laughed when I saw the house beer offered during the afternoon manager's reception. Of course, I had one. After all, it was free! And free is good...always. Collect the soap bars and shampoo bottles and drink a house PBR. I may adopt that statement as the new slogan for this hapless blog.

This was my favorite t-shirt I saw while in Salt Lake / Park City. From what I've gathered, however, the t-shirt is better than the brew itself. Or perhaps phrased in a different manner, the porter is even more tasteless than the shirt.

No trip to SLC is complete without at least a brief visit to Temple Square -- the home, the epicenter, the grand poobah of the Church of Latter Day Saints aka The Mormons.

You can quibble about the tenets of Mormonism. You can compare and contrast the faith and other world faith systems until the cows come home. But two things you can't argue are (1) the genuine friendliness of the "brothers" and "sisters" welcoming you to the property and (2) the unbelievable detail put into Temple Square - including the famed Tabernacle where they got that whole choir thang going.

Now for reasons I still don't quite understand, regular folks like me aren't allowed in the temple itself. At first I wanted to be offended because I thought they might discriminate me for toting a PBR and wearing a Polygamy Porter t-shirt. But I've learned even some practicing Mormons aren't allowed in certain parts of the temples either.

Maybe one of these days I'll study the whole matter more. Until then, I may just crack a PBR, close my eyes, and visualize again the grandeur of the Rockies.


Sunday, June 21, 2009

Daddy at Grimey's

Daddy released their second CD "For a Second Time" on June 16. To kick it off, they had a free in-store performance at Grimey's New & Pre-Loved Music in Nashville. I captured video for 3 songs and took a couple of pics as well.

Here is Mike "Grimey" Grimes getting the show started. For the un-initiated, Grimey was in a band along with the two frontmen of Daddy - Will Kimbrough and Tommy Womack - in a band called The Bis-Quits about a decade ago.

I beg your forgiveness on the audio. It sounded fantastic there, but the little mic on my Canon camera was overwhelmed. As for video editing, what I saw is what you get. No multi-camera. No fancy editing. Just fresh from SD chip to PC to YouTube to you. Raw as a fresh piece of celery.

The band opened with the first track of their new CD - Nobody From Nowhere.

The next track they played was a song Tommy penned titled Early To Bed, Early To Rise.

The other track I captured was from Daddy's first CD "From The Women's Club" - You Made Your Bed.

When he isn't jamming as part of Daddy or doing daddy-duty, you'll find Will Kimbrough as a guitarist in Rodney Crowell's band or touring with Todd Snider.

You'll often find Tommy Womack touring with Todd Snider as well or as a frequent performer at Norm's River Roadhouse in West Nashville or The Family Wash in East Nashville.


Tuesday, June 16, 2009

Commitment and Passion

Took my son to Boy Scouts summer camp Sunday. While I enjoy camping a bit, I prefer spring or fall - where the days are reasonable and the nights are pleasantly cool. I don't enjoy 90 degree days and stifling nights. So each summer, I drop him off on Sunday and pick him up on Friday.

One man who does enjoy camp week is my son's scoutmaster. At 80+ years old and a World War II navy vet, he goes each summer. A year or so ago, he told me he wouldn't miss summer camp for the world. He said he's spent a year of his life sleeping in a tent at summer camp - 1 week at a time. Having spent 50+ years of his life working with scouts, the math is easy to calculate.

I'm about 1/2 his age, but I don't even have 1/2 his commitment and passion for helping develop boys into young men. He's turned over a large portion of his property to the troop - including a 100 year-old barn. Plus, he gives up every Tuesday evening and Saturday afternoon working with the boys on rank advancement, troop meetings, etc.

No Hampton Inn Hhonors Points earned here.

A (monkey) bridge to nowhere - Five of us built it in about 90 minutes.


Monday, June 8, 2009

Introducing Marble

A neighbor got conned by her son into adopting a stray cat. What she failed to know on the front end was the cat was about to become four. Within a week or so of giving the cat a new home, *ka boom* three kittens arrive. My daughter immediately latched onto one of them during a visit and the suck-up began almost immediately thereafter.

We already have 2 cats. I tried to explain that we didn't need a third. We had 2 kids because we didn't want three. We have 2 vehicles because we don't want three. I go to 2 NASCAR races a year because my wife won't let me to to three. Get the picture?

However, as I learned, my vote really didn't matter anyway. The conspiracy was underway. My son, daughter, and wife had already determined one of the kittens was coming our way. I was asked simply as a courtesy - not because any of the three of them gave a hoot what I thought.

So 8 weeks later, here she is. My daughter named her Marble - although "baby kitty" seems to be the most oft' used name at the moment.

In other news, I have sinus surgery scheduled for mid-July. I'm a long-time allergy sufferer, and they finally need to do some work up there. Among other irritants in my sinuses? Oh yeah...that's right... pet dander.


Thursday, June 4, 2009

Ozzy Rules

No, not this Ozzy.

THIS Ozzy.

My son has grown much taller and far faster than I ever imagined. He has long since outgrown his bicycle, and he's been chomping at the bit to get a full frame, 26" bike. He asked for my advice, and I told him I'd keep an eye open for bikes on Craigslist. Figured he'd get a bargain along the way.

He started getting a bit antsy and told me he could get a new one at Wal-Mart for $120. I quickly informed him HE could buy a new one for that amount but that I would not be buying one at that price. It was amazing how quickly he re-embraced the Craigslist idea.

Then enters Ozzy...

He recalled he had a fairly new bike in his attic that had rarely been ridden and offered to give it to my son for free, nada, comp. Ba-da-bing, ba-da-boom, everyone's happy.

He brought it to work today, its in the back of my truck right now, and I imagine my son will be be tooling about the neighborhood on his new pimped-out wheels Friday.

Mighty props to Ozzy. Visit him at