Tuesday, October 30, 2007

i miss my friends

Not long after Gina and I got married and moved to Bowling Green KY, we made Fountain Square Free Methodist our home church. It was during that time that we met Donnie & Cheri Obermiller. Donnie told me of a house for sale up on Robinhood Trail - just a few houses down from where they lived. We shared birthdays, meals, and walks together. During those few years we were neighbors, we became dear friends.

Gina and I don't get to see them much these days and we miss them. It would be nice to take off one weekend with the kids and visit. The last time we drove out to Germantown to see them, Katie was just a little thing and Kelsey wasn't around. It would be nice to see them again, get the coffee going, and catch up on life.

Anyway, I am thinking about my old neighbors. I miss the Obermillers.

Saturday, October 27, 2007


i see a big contrast

within the every day

we speak of worship

that part of worship that is music

pointing to the ones that lead

of great talent

and gifting


there are a few

out on the streets

out in the field

doing the very work

that Jesus commanded us

not very glamorous

not elevated

upon the stage

amid the lights

but rather

those out there

in the unsafe places

feeding the hungry

clothing the naked

offering hope to the addicted

visiting those in prison

showing a stranger

the redeemed man standing before them

saying i was blind but now i see


we buy the latest worship cds

read the relevant books

talk about being culturally relevant

speaking all the right words

proclaiming our love for God

yet not do the common things

that love requires

to truly love the least of these

that is how you love Me

that is how you glorify Me

that is how you worship Me

increasing the kingdom

by loving those outside our comfort

going that extra mile

becoming the aroma of Christ

becoming His hands on earth

worship in the deeper

and every day

worship with our every being

outside the walls

in every thing

Tuesday, October 23, 2007

All Hail American International Pictures

I grew up at a good time. Everyone who knows me knows that I love going to the drive-in. I haven't been that much this summer...mostly because of the heat. There also hasn't been much worth watching. Still, nevertheless, I've missed it. I nearly went last Sunday night, just to go for going sake....all by myself. I ended up not doing it because I like having company along.

It's Fall...October to be exact...Halloween time. Growing up, my brother Brooky would frequently hit the drive-ins with Jamie Moore. I was a little kid then and always appreciated it when Brook would ask me to come along with him. Halloween meant the all night spook fest at The Rebel Drive-In in Attalla. The spook fest would go from dusk till dawn...horror movies back to back. My favorites were The the horror films of American International. Sinister beings such as Peter Lorre, Vincent Price, Boris Karloff, Christopher Lee, and Peter Cushing. It was American international that I last watched Peter, Vincent and Boris and the first time I ever saw Christopher Lee and Peter Cushing. Great stuff.

I remember seeing Bucket of Blood, The Island of Dr. Moreau (Burt Lancaster), Madhouse, The Thing with Two Heads (funny), The Oblong Box, Comedy of Terrors, X- The Man with X-Ray Eyes, Tales of Terror. I also enjoyed their Edgar Allen Poe takes, The Fall of The House of Usher, The Pit and the Pendulum, and The Raven.

Good times!

Friday, October 19, 2007

poor poor pitiful zevon

I finished the book I'll Sleep When I'm Dead, The Dirty Life & Times of Warren Zevon by Crystal Zevon. Warren has been, since the late seventies, one of my favorite all time songwriters. The guy really was a genius.

Before his death, Warren had asked his ex-wife Cystal to write his biography...warts and all. She was apparently just the person to do it. Though I haven't lived a lifestyle of this strangely talented individual, I wouldn't want an anal exam bio of me written like this one.

You'll find Warren here between the pages of this book. His dry wit, his sick sense of humor...but you'll also find his addictions and darkest side, a bona fide hedonist. Some stuff, I'd rather wished left in the closet, but that's what we'd all be tempted to do with the dead, those we cared about. As a Christian, so much of this book was terribly sad. Most of his life was a self inflicted tragedy, a big time narcissist, a man who swapped one addiction for another through out his life, hurting all those around him.

The parts I did enjoy were finding out about the L.A. music scene back in the 70's and 80's...the camaraderie, the music. The dialogue of family and old acquaintances and Warren's journal tell the stories behind the songs.

Favorite part: Mitch Albom and Warren collaborate on the hockey song HIT SOMEBODY. There's paragraph or two that stands out, where Warren is answering a question about he and Mitch are working on "Does that really rhyme?" Warren said, "I can make anything rhyme. Are you kidding? Jut get it close and I'll make it rhyme." All the things you associate with songwriting that you think have to be so exact, he says, Come on. It's rock and roll. He can rhyme 'thanks' with 'mom' I'll make it work. Don't worry?

Favorite account / contributor: I just enjoyed reading the account of Peter Asher, the guy that befriended and managed Warren between the year as of 1991-1996. He's the guy that got Warren off his butt and back into the recording studio with a college band called R.E.M. Peter did his best to help Zevon into rehab and was with him through the lean times.

The sadist part: When Roy Marinell and Warren ended their friendship over the royalties of Werewolves of London. They had been long time friends and collaborators. That's right, Werewolves wasn't solely written by Zevon. There were a lot of friendships that Warren cast aside for silly reasons or for no sane reason at all.

I enjoyed the read but there was a great deal I didn't care to find out about one of my favorite songwriters. C'est la vie.

Wednesday, October 17, 2007

songs born

Brook approached me after church Sunday. As usual he was glowing about his gifted children. I wonder if Liz and West realize how very proud their father is of them. Then Brook says, oh, I wrote a song last night.

My brother is the most gifted songwriter that I know. His music and talents were my primary influence. He was the one that gave me my first guitar lesson. It was his Yamaha FG-180 and Gibson Hummingbird that I first tried learning on. He gave me my first blues harp lesson too. It was Brook that I would take my early works to for criticism...and he was willing to give it. In my youth, it was Brook's songs that made me want to write, play, and sing. Yet there are songs of his, that I haven't heard in a decade or two.

Brook doesn't write that much, he hasn't written a song in a long time. I haven't heard it yet but maybe I will when we all get together for the family Thanksgiving jam.

I think people who are given a gift to write songs - should do so. I think people who are given voice - should use it. Brook has always been an connoisseur of music, he leads worship teams often, but rarely does he write an original offering. Like wine, it's nice that his is such a connoisseur of music, but he is one such master, who shouldn't be just tasting but rather, should be, growing and bottling his own label.

Tuesday, October 16, 2007

excitable boy

The weekend went well. My voice was shredded by Sunday morning. It was all so worth it though. As you probably know, I played at the Coffee Vine Cafe' both Friday and Saturday nights. Saturday night I decided to rearrange the stage and do it in the round. Todd and Lenola showed with their instruments. AJ and Gina manned their D'jembe's and assorted noise makers. Rachael and Cherie joined their voices late in the evening. We had a great sound together. I wish that I had some way of recording these nights. Great moments.

Sunday rolled round and Gina, Katie and I went to Vineyard's morning service. Afterwards, we ventured to Gina's mom to pick up Kelsey who had stayed over night Saturday. We picked up some KFC on the way and stayed for a while. When we got back to the house I pretty much stayed downstairs for the rest of the day and crashed on the couch between laundry loads.

Had a nice day at the office Monday. Gina, Kelsey and I took an early and long lunch. We even hit the Dollar Tree. For you musician's out there with little electronic gadgets that you have to keep batteries going....go get your batteries there. I wait till they have the Sunbeam brand AAA and AA eight (8) packs on sale. Double packs of 9 volts are good to have in your gig bag. No sense spending more for them. I had to change out two 9 volt batteries Saturday night (direct box and my guitar EQ thingy. Jamie "The Pickle" Jones called my cell on my way home. She was letting me know that the Warren Zevon's Bio I'll Sleep When I'm Dead was ready for me to pick up at the RBC Library. I got the chance to get a good start on it when I got home. Katie spent most of the evening doing a poster for science.

I really need to go to the grocery store. I reheated leftovers last night. Both my BBQ meatloaf and Gina's pot roast were not that good the first time around. We ate for the sake of eating something and I dumped the rest of the remains into the trash. I apologized for the meal and promised to go to the store before next meal.

Tonight we are having our monthly Lymphedema Support Group here at the office. Grandmother Hale will be watching over the kids while we are hosting the meeting. We hope to wrap up by 7:00 tonight. Support group meetings are long days but the people that show are sweet folk and most have become good friends. I'm cleaning the office until then and will order PIZZA before they get here.

It looks like we will be expecting some rain this week. That will be nice but I hope we have a moment of unwet so I can go to the drive-in this weekend. It's been a long time and it won't be until Friday afternoon until I know what will be showing. We'll see.

Friday, October 12, 2007


Somehow I deleted all of my links. I guess I wasn't paying attention. I was trying to add Michael's resurrected bad movie blog back to my list and I must have pushed the wrong button. Sorry if I deleted your links. I will add them as I find them.

I am singing at the Coffee Vine Cafe' tonight and tomorrow night. I really have grown fond of this place and the people I've met there. I am taken back to the old Christian Brother's Coffeehouse. It's nice to see some of the old faces there, Richard Moon, Lori Howell, David Creel, Richard Bradford and Debbie Handy. There are other people I enjoy hooking up with. AJ is usually there and will be bringing his new djembe' to play. I hope to see Rick Gwen there too. I am blessed to have so many friends old and new.

The last time I played there an unusual thing happened. What started out as a solo performance ended up being a night of worship with a stage full of friends. I can't describe it but God was on it and we just let the night unfold. Every night I have played there has been different. I anticipate each night I play there.

I'd like to hit a drive-in sometime soon. I only went twice during the entire summer...and oddity for me. It was just so very hot and busy.

I am leaving the office a little early today. I am going to the cafe to set up the sound system so I don't have to go do it before singing tonight. Jose' if you are interested...I'd love to have you join us.

Thursday, October 11, 2007

what he said

"Congressmen who willfully take actions during wartime
that damage morale, and undermine the military
are saboteurs and should be arrested, exiled or hanged."
~ President Abraham Lincoln ~

Tuesday, October 9, 2007

Friday & Saturday Night

I'll be playing this Friday and Saturday night at the Coffee Vine Cafe & Eatery. I love the coffee and the fellowship. Each night I've played it's been pleasantly different. I usually crank up around 7:30. Hope to see you there. The Coffee Vine is located in the corner of the Rainbow Plaza.

Monday, October 8, 2007

the weekend review

The I-20 shutdown really wasn't so bad. It was surreal though. Hundreds of cars, hundreds of people standing out on the highway with no where to go. We had conversations with all kinds of strangers. Fortunately the Georgia Welcome Center was a half mile up the road and people didn't have to pee in the woods...though some did.

I usually fill my cooler on wheels with ice and sodas on trips. It saves on money. I had purchase a couple of cases of generic sodas (Nola calls them ghetto-colas). Gina took the cooler and proceeded to sell sodas to peope for $1.00 a pop. She sold all the sodas and ended up with $29.00! Hilarious.

We got to Cobb County around 11:00 their time and got into our room at the Cumberland Courtyard Hotel. Gina was at the Lymphedema meeting most of the day Saturday. I pretty much hung around in a frigid cold hotel room (ahhhhh) and soaked in a tub two times that day. I did nothing! Later in the day I picked up Gina from the Renaissance Hotel where the conference took place. She was very excited and was loving every minute of it. We drove over to a Longhorn Steak house and had an incredible meal. Gina had the pork chops and I had an 180z rib eye with sweet potato on the side. It was the best meal I'd had all year.

Sunday rolled around and Gina again too the hotel shuttle back to the Renaissance. I didn't hang around the hotel because I had to pack and check out. I went to the mall. I don't care for malls. I did go to a Guitar Center but didn't buy anything. If I were rich, I would have bought one of two Martin Guitars there. I was hoping to find a new tuner there...the one that clamps to the head of the guitar. They didn't have one. I just killed time for about four hours until Gina got out around 4:30.

Gina and hunting down a Bar-B-Que place that we had eaten at about 12 years ago. It's located on Roswell Road, not too far from where we had been staying. The place is called Williamson Brother's Bar-B-Que and it was just as most excellent as we both remembers. I ate a whole slab of baby-back ribs.

I had a very nice weekend. Gina had to go to the conference but she loves that kind of stuff. I got to relax, spent alone time with my wife, and ate like a king.

Saturday, October 6, 2007

1-20 Shutdown

Heading to Atlanta yesterday. Gina and I enjoyed Olive Garden at in Oxford then got on the highway. The car came to a stand still as with hundreds of others on the Georgia line. A large mass of black smoke ascended miles ahead. We sat in the car inching forward for about fifteen minutes until everything came to a complete shutdown for five hours.

Wednesday, October 3, 2007

the war

PBS has been airing a new documentary by Ken Burns entitled The War. I'll put it right up there with The Civil War. The difference between the two is that The War is told by the people who survived it. WWII is such a vast telling, fought on a thousand fronts that Ken Burns told how the war was experienced by four U.S. towns. Burns said in an interview that he simply wanted stories to be told without commentaries and hindsight analysis. What I have seen of this documentary I've found myself spellbound.

Growing up, we've been surrounded by silent heroes. Once young men that left their homes and families and fought a terrible terrible war. We were once a great nation that could rally together, every man woman and child to do their part for much needed victory. It is my prayer that that great nation might still exist. While watching The War, I was constantly reminded of who we were and what we are now. I am afraid to say what it will take to shut the politicians up..what other tragedy it will take to wake us up. 9/11 was a wake up call and most of us hit the snooze button and rolled over. On the TV, all I see are people complaining about when we'll bring our troops home...as if stopping the war will end our problems. Absolute stupidity.

Agree with me or not, try to catch the documentary. It's a moving work and will make you appreciate the lives of our very own kinfolk.

Here's an image I found online of my Uncle Pat's LST 312. He was on Bloody Omaha in June of 1944. Patillo Ainsworth Finlayson is the youngest of my dad's siblings and now resides in Columbia, SC.

Tuesday, October 2, 2007

monday revisited

Dropped Katie off at school then came to the clinic and worked until time to pick Katie up from school. Now that we have two vehicles again I can take the girls home. Katie didn't need me for homework so I did a little laundry and started prepping a supper for us.

I made a great tasting pot roast with gravy. I also made biscuits and rice to spill the gravy over on. I also cooked down some green beans to go on the side. We had some left over cheese shell macaroni and so I nuked that for anyone interested. We turned out having a nice big meal last night.

I read Katie about a half a chapter of the Hobbit. Gina got home about 7:00ish and so I heated her up a plate. She woofed it down but opted out on a second helping of the gravy. She instead went the honey route as she finished of the biscuits. Gina likes desert and I rarely buy or make deserts. Usually honey or strawberry preserves on a remaining biscuit will satisfy her.

We have to eat out a good bit since we started the business. Home cooking is better but not always time for it. I've noticed the past few months how restaurant food is getting more expensive. I used to count on taking my kids to CiCi's to feed little tummies but no more. They've gone up on their prices. Last month I went to Ryan's and they went up. I spent just under 10.00 for their bar and that was having it with water only. I went to Shoney's recently and had their bar. I ordered a tea to go along with it and it cost me just under 12.00. Throw in a tip and I can't afford to eat lunch there anymore. Pruett's Barbeque drive-through went up drastically. Remember their dollar barbeques....no more. They've more then doubled their prices too! At least they seem to have added a little more meat on their buns for the price increase. Everywhere I go the prices have gone up. I've started keeping a folder in my car with coupons. If I have to eat out, I need to go to the places offering the coupons. We've been trying to keep sandwich fixin's at the office.