Saturday, November 12, 2011

Battle of the Bands.......................

Vanilla Fudge.................................You Keep Me Hanging On




The Supremes..............................You Keep Me Hanging On




And the winner is................................

OK, Coach......................



















“Life is ten percent what happens to you and ninety
percent how you respond to it.”

-Lou Holtz

Makes perfect sense to me...............























thanks Will

Opening paragraphs

Nathaniel Hawthorne's house    Salem, MA




















A throng of bearded men, in sad-colored garments and gray,
steeple-crowned hats, intermixed with women, some wearing
hoods, and others bareheaded, was assembled in front of a
wooden edifice, the door of which was heavily timbered with
oak, and studded with iron spikes.

Nathaniel Hawthorne,  The Scarlet Letter

Serious hopscotch


Be amazing.............................















thanks Jessica

If you ever need a helping hand.....

Marvin Gaye and Tammi Terrell................Ain't No Mountain...

Friday, November 11, 2011

Battle of the Bands..............................

The Ventures....................................Wipeout




The Surfaris....................................Wipeout





And the winner is...................

November 11th..................

At our  Rotary meeting this week the speaker was Don Jakeway,
a veteran of  WWII.  Jakeway served in the 82nd Airborne and
jumped into Normandy on the night of June 5th,  1944.  He
admits to being the luckiest man alive and shared several stories
of amazing close calls.  The experiences shaped the rest of his
life.  A video of his story is here. 

Listening to Don made me think of my Dad.  Dad was a Sergeant
with the 9th Infantry and was overseas for three years, serving in
North Africa, Sicily, France, and Belgium.  He also spent a few
months in England prior to D-Day.

Growing up, he would never talk about the war.  If the topic was
brought up, he would brush it off and change the subject. It was
only after the 50th anniversary of D-Day that he became willing to
unlock those memories and share them.  One day he asked if I
would like to read some letters.  Turns out he wrote regularly to
his mother and some close friends, who saved all the letters and
gave them back to him upon his return.  50 years later, he handed
me the shoebox they were stored in.  "Here you go," he said. 

This is a brief excerpt from a December 1944 letter, written to a
close friend, just before the Battle of the Bulge:


  




















   "Kit, this must sound very jumbled and rather incoherent,
but I have been groping for words as I wrote.  How I wish I
might be sitting with you and Terry.  I know so well that it
would be far easier to talk to you about this and then I could
get across what is really in my heart and mind.
     "There is so much to live for and so many pleasant things
to do for, and with, close friends, that it honestly hurts to be
here.
     "But then two years of combat makes a man sentimental,
even though there is seemingly nothing but cynicism and
bitterness in his heart.  I found out how easy it is to shed these
hurts, for although I had but forty-eight hours in Paris, just
to be where civilians were made me surprisingly happy."

Thanks Dad. 

Happy Veterans Day.

OK, Coach........................















"We would accomplish many more things if we
did not think of them as impossible."
-Vince Lombardi

Opening paragraphs.................















     My first encounter with the American press, more than eighty years ago, was unforgettable and probably determined me to be a newspaperman.  My brother, Gilbert, and I were farm boys; in summer we hoed and dug potatoes and picked strawberries at one cent a quart - the selling price was eight or nine cents at the nearby Wallabout Market in Philadelphia.  In autumn we joyfully skipped school to pick grapes, which Grandfather sold to a man named Charlie Welch, the inventor of alcohol-free wine he called grape juice.  This, our only crop, brought us three hundred dollars a year, which, plus the $16.66 we earned every month by keeping the fourth-class post office in the family, made us one of the more affluent families in Alliance, New Jersey.

-George Seldes,  Witness To A Century

photo courtesy of

Me and my computer.............















thanks Eric

How to stay young..............















From the mind that was George Carlin, comes a list:

1. Throw out nonessential numbers. This includes age,
    weight and height. Let the doctor worry about them.
    That is why you pay him/her.

2. Keep only cheerful friends. The grouches pull you down.

3. Keep learning. Learn more about the computer, crafts,
    gardening, whatever. Never let the brain idle. ” An idle
    mind is the devil’s workshop.” And the devil’s name is
     Alzheimer’s.

4. Enjoy the simple things.

5. Laugh often, long and loud. Laugh until you gasp for
    breath.

6. The tears happen. Endure, grieve, and move on. The only
    person who is with us our entire life, is ourselves. Be ALIVE
    while you are alive.

7. Surround yourself with what you love, whether it’s family,
    pets, keepsakes, music, plants, hobbies, whatever. Your
    home is your refuge.

8. Cherish your health: If it is good, preserve it. If it is
    unstable, improve it. If it is beyond what you can improve,
    get help.

9. Don’t take guilt trips. Take a trip to the mall, to the next
    county, to a foreign country, but NOT to where the guilt is.

10. Tell the people you love that you love them, at every
    opportunity.

Life is not measured by the number of breaths we take, but
by the moments that take our breath way.

"Embedding disabled by request".........

Seriously?  Why on earth wouldn't you want to allow this classic
to be shared?

The Temptations singing My Girl.  Do go watch.

Weak I'd rather be.................

The Four Tops....................................Baby I Need Your Loving

Thursday, November 10, 2011

Battle of the Bands....................

Nicks/Buckingham...................................................Landslide





Dixie Chicks.............................................................Landslide




And the winner is......................

Jeff goes deep...........................

.........and has some fun doing so.  Full post here.  Excerpt here:

"He already knew he could coach. All you had to do was look at each of your players and ask yourself: What story does this guy wish someone would tell him about himself? And then you told the guy that story. You told it with a hint of doom. You included his flaws. You emphasized the obstacles that could prevent him from succeeding. That was what made the story epic: the player, the hero, had to suffer mightily en route to his final triumph."


OK, Coach........................











Today, you have 100% of your life left.
-Tom Landry

The only thing we are building much of........

.................right now is "pent-up demand."  We do expect to sell
a few more fabulous building lots in 2012 than we did in 2011. 
Please don't let us down.


















thanks Bill

No liberal arts education is complete.........

...without a few helpings of Jetboy.  Yesterday I had never heard
of Hadden Sayers, today I can't get his tune out of my head.

    "I'm going back to the blues
     it's the only way I know..."

Finish your schooling.  Do tune into Jetboy and Skip regularly.

And to think he was a Milton scholar.............























Operating on the theory that a) we should encourage all the
budding authors and blogsters that we can, and b) that people
who can string words together in an interesting fashion are worth
paying attention to, and c) that exiles from academia should be
rewarded not punished,  I propose you go visit the new blog
of Jarod Anderson.

Jarod (operating now as J. Kelley Anderson) has discovered a
taste for Stephen King:

"Well, it’s happened. I have been away from academia for four months and I’ve started liking Stephen King. I have descended from my handcrafted biodegradable perch of literary hipsterdom. I have navigated the obscure and treacherous rivers of artisan beers in my kayak of self-satisfaction, and I have found myself afloat in the Budweiser Sea of mainstream fiction. My literary snob credentials are forever lost."

(Editors Note:  In the interest of full disclosure, I should mention
that J. Kelley is the very talented son of my business partner of
these many years.)

Could you drop me off at the Post Office?



















thanks Tyler

Richard Stevens Valenzuela.......

Ritchie Valens................................................La bamba

Wednesday, November 9, 2011

Battle of the Bands........................

Dave Mathews Band..................All Along the Watchtower





Jimi Hendrix.......................All Along the Watchtower




And the winner is...............................

OK, Coach......................



















"Don't let what you cannot do interfere with
what you can do."

-John Wooden

















    "Make love now, by night and by day, in winter and in summer.......You are in the world for that and the rest of life is nothing but vanity, illusion, waste.  There is only one science, love; only one policy, love.  To make love is all the law, and the prophets."
-Anatole France

It's all in the name.........................

There have been several lists whizzing through the Intertunnel
purporting to show the most popular names.  I believe, but won't
swear, that this list comes from the Social Security Administration
folks.  Probably makes it believable. 

Let's see.  Oliver comes in at 88.  Jaxson comes in at 99.  Kaleb
comes in at 117.  Oscar comes in at 147 . My self confidence is
being tested here.  Stephen finally shows up at 202.  Yow.





A factory of sadness....................

This blog prides itself on its optimistic and sunny disposition. Sometimes, however, the dark side is soooooo inviting.

For those who care about such things, I grew up in Philadelphia. At that point in our nation's history, rooting for a Philly team almost always meant you were rooting for the underdog.  I have happily carried that habit with me for all my life.

When I moved to Ohio in the mid-1970's neither the Browns nor the Bengals appealed to me.  Then along came 1979 and Brian Sipe and Sam Rutigliano and the "Kardiac Kids," and I was hooked by the feistiness of the Browns.  That era passed, with heartbreak not triumph, but I remained a Browns fan.  Over those years they have occasionally been good, but mostly they filled my requirement for underdogness quite nicely.  

But................enough is enough.


Jiles Perry Richardson, Jr..............................

The Big Bopper.................................Chantilly Lace

Tuesday, November 8, 2011

Battle of the Bands.......................

The Zombies......................................She's Not There



Santana..............................................She's Not There




And the winner is..........................

OK, Coach.....................















“I'm not really worried about the other 31 teams.”

-Bill Belichick

My Latin is a bit rusty, but....................

Dimidium facti, qui coepit, habet; sapere aude, incipe.
Viuendi qui recte prorogat horam,
rusticus expectat dum defluat amnis;
at ille labitur et labetur in omne uolubilis aeuum.

Who’s started has half finished: dare to be wise: begin!
He who postpones the time for right-living resembles
The rustic who’s waiting until the river’s passed by:
Yet it glides on, and will roll on, gliding forever.

-Horace,  Epistles,  Book I, Epistle II

Uh-oh..................................





















Thanks Kevin

Majesty...........................



















The Grand Canyon is carven deep by the master hand; it is the gulf of silence, widened in the desert; it is all time inscribing the naked rock; it is the book of earth. 
-Donald C. Peattie

image from Ansel Adams via Google Images

To thine ownself....................
















thanks Jessica

In the beginning.........................

Buddy Holly...................................Peggy Sue

Monday, November 7, 2011

OK, Coach.............



















"The time you give a man something he doesn't earn,
you cheapen him. Our kids earn what they get, and
that includes respect."

-Wayne Woodrow Hayes

Patrick Guanciale..........................

The Wall Street Journal and REAL Trends, Inc. just published  a list of the top 1,000 real estate agents and teams in the U. S. While there are many ways to rank sales people, this list was made by tracking "sides" of a transaction.  Representing a buyer in their purchase of a home would count as one "side."  If one checks with the National Association of Realtors, one discovers that there are over 1,700,000 licensed real estate sales people in the United States.  Lot more than I thought.  The top 1,000 could easily be considered the cream of the crop.  In scanning through the top 250 on the published list, it is clear that a number of these folks are specializing in the foreclosure market.  Nothing wrong with that, mind you, but it is just not the same as representing real people as they buy and sell their homes.

Our friend Patrick Guanciale checks in at number 218 on this nationwide list.  It is not a surprise.  He has been serving his clients, customers, and our community for almost forty years.  He has managed to become high tech while still maintaining a highly personal touch.  I can only admire and envy his communication and follow-up skills.  On top of being a hard worker, Pat is thoughtful, kind, and just plain good with people.  His professionalism and dedication to doing the job right have made Pat successful by any definition you want to choose.  I am proud to call him my friend.





Thanks Kurt for pointing the way

Opening paragraphs

At seven o'clock of a Caribbean morning, on the island of Antigua, one Peregrine Makepiece, otherwise known as Perry, an all-round amateur athlete of distinction and until recently tutor in English literature at a distinguished Oxford college, played three sets of tennis against a muscular, stiff-backed, bald, brown-eyed Russian man of dignified bearing in is middle fifties called Dima.  How this match came about was quickly the subject of intense examination by British agents professionally disposed against the workings of chance.  Yet the events leading up to it were on Perry's side blameless.

-John Le Carre,  Our Kind of Traitor

A poem for Monday.................
















             After Apple Picking

My long two-pointed ladder's sticking through a tree
Toward heaven still.
And there's a barrel that I didn't fill
Beside it, and there may be two or three
Apples I didn't pick upon some bough.
But I am done with apple-picking now.
Essence of winter sleep is on the night,
The scent of apples; I am drowsing off.
I cannot shake the shimmer from my sight
I got from looking through a pane of glass
I skimmed this morning from the water-trough,
And held against the world of hoary grass.
It melted, and I let it fall and break.
But I was well
Upon my way to sleep before it fell,
And I could tell
What form my dreaming was about to take.
Magnified apples appear and reappear,
Stem end and blossom end,
And every fleck of russet showing clear.
My instep arch not only keeps the ache,
It keeps the pressure of a ladder-round.
And I keep hearing from the cellar-bin
That rumbling sound
Of load on load of apples coming in.
For I have had too much
Of apple-picking; I am overtired
Of the great harvest I myself desired.
There were ten thousand thousand fruit to touch,
Cherish in hand, lift down, and not let fall,
For all
That struck the earth,
No matter if not bruised, or spiked with stubble,
Went surely to the cider-apple heap
As of no worth.
One can see what will trouble
This sleep of mine, whatever sleep it is.
Were he not gone,
The woodchuck could say whether it's like his
Long sleep, as I describe its coming on,
Or just some human sleep.

-Robert Frost

image courtesy of

Mixed messages....................

Here she comes now............

The Tremeloes..........................Here Comes My Baby

Sunday, November 6, 2011

OK, Coach........................


"There is a saying that I love. I'd have it magnetized to my refrigerator, but my refrigerator has a glass front, so I have it tacked to a small bulletin-board thing that I have. It says: 'There are no Zen masters, there's only Zen.' 'Zen master' is a contradiction in terms. You don't master Zen."
-Phil Jackson

Themselves................Part the First


As we have likely recognized by now, no two snowflakes, trees, or animals are alike.  No two people are the same, either.  Everything has its own Inner Nature.  Unlike other forms of life, though, people are easily led away from what's right for them, because people have a Brain, and Brain can be fooled.  Inner Nature, when relied on, cannot be fooled. But many people do not look at it or listen to it, and consequently do not understand themselves very much.  Having little understanding of themselves, they have little respect for themselves, and are therefore easily influenced by others.

Benjamin Hoff,  The Tao of Pooh

Themselves.................Part the Second


     But, rather than be carried along by circumstances and manipulated by those who can see the weaknesses and behavior tendencies that we ignore, we can work with our own characteristics and be in control of our own lives.  The Way of Self-Reliance starts with recognizing who we are, what we've got to work with, and what works best for us.

       "How would you explain it, Pooh?"
       "With a song," he said.  "A little something
         I just made up."
        "Go ahead."
        "Certainly.......(cough)."

         How can you get very far,
         If you don't know Who You Are?
        How can you do what you ought,
        If you don't know What You've Got?
        And if you don't know Which to Do
       Of all the things in front of you,
       Then what you'll have when you are through
       Is just a mess without a clue
       Of all the best that can come true
       If you know What and Which and Who.

     "That's it," he said, leaning back and closing his eyes.
     "A Masterpiece."
     "Well, better than average, maybe."

-Benjamin Hoff,  The Tao of Pooh

Action and Inaction................

What is action?  What is inaction?  Even the wise are puzzled by this question.  Therefore, I will tell you what action is.  When you know that, you will be free from all impurity.  You must learn what kind of work to do, what kind of work to avoid, and how to reach a state of calm detachment from your work.  The real nature of action is hard to understand.
     He who sees the inaction that is in action, and the action that is in inaction, is wise indeed.  Even when he is engaged in action he remains poised in the tranquillity of the Atman.

         The seers say truly
         That he is wise
         Who acts without lust or scheming
         For the fruit of the act:
         His act falls from him,
         Its chain is broken,
         Melted in the flame of my knowledge.
         Turning his face from the fruit,
         He needs nothing:
         The Atman is enough.
         He acts and is beyond action.

-Bhagavad-Gita: The Song of God
Chapter IV

Sunday's Verse

14  For the kingdom of heaven is as a man travelling into a
far country, who called his own servants, and delivered unto
them his goods.

15  And unto one he gave five talents, to another two, and
to another one; to every man according to his several ability;
and straightway took his journey.

16  Then he that had received the five talents went and
traded with the same, and made them other five talents.

17  And likewise he that had received two, he also gained
other two.

18  But he that had received one went and digged in the
earth, and hid his lord's money.

19  After a long time the lord of those servants cometh,
and reckoneth with them.

20  And so he that had received five talents came and
brought other five talents, saying, Lord, thou deliveredst
unto me five talents: behold, I have gained beside them
five talents more.

21  His lord said unto him, Well done, thou good and faithful
servant: thou hast been faithful over a few things, I will make
thee ruler over many things: enter thou into the joy of thy lord.

22  He also that had received two talents came and said, Lord,
thou deliveredst unto me two talents: behold, I have gained
two other talents beside them.

23  His lord said unto him, Well done, good and faithful
servant; thou hast been faithful over a few things, I will make
thee ruler over many things: enter thou into the joy of thy lord.

24  Then he which had received the one talent came and said,
Lord, I knew thee that thou art an hard man, reaping where
thou hast not sown, and gathering where thou hast not
strawed:

25  And I was afraid, and went and hid thy talent in the
earth: lo, there thou hast that is thine.

26  His lord answered and said unto him, Thou wicked and
slothful servant, thou knewest that I reap where I sowed not,
and gather where I have not strawed:

27  Thou oughtest therefore to have put my money to the
exchangers, and then at my coming I should have received
mine own with usury.

28  Take therefore the talent from him, and give it unto him
which hath ten talents.

29  For unto every one that hath shall be given, and he shall
have abundance: but from him that hath not shall be taken
away even that which he hath.

30  And cast ye the unprofitable servant into outer darkness:
there shall be weeping and gnashing of teeth.

Mathew 25:14-30
The Holy Bible, King James Version

Walk on.....walk on.................

Gerry and the Pacemakers..................You'll Never Walk Alone

I suspect we've played this one before, but it is worth the re-play.