Sunday, November 25, 2007

Saturday & Sunday

I made a big breakfast for the girls Saturday morning. They offered to help set up the P.A. at the cafe' in the morning. I've been setting up prior to the performance because it usually wipes me out to set up and then jump into singing. It was nice to have their help. We took off from the cafe' and I thought it would be nice if we could catch a movie. We watched B MOVIE and it was pretty good. I think the girls liked the nacho cheese more than the movie. We also shopped at Sears for Kelsey some pants. She's outgrown almost every pair in her closet. We were in two vehicles so I left them at there shopping after about an hour or so and headed over the the cafe' to hang for a while.

Saturday evening went well. Wes E. (my nephew) walked in to the cafe' with his acoustic and I plugged him in. Gina joined in with d'jembe. Foster (the artist formerly known as Emily, my niece) came in with her banjo and her song book. My mother and sisters showed up in the audience. We had a pretty good crowd considering it the big game night. Alas, Don and Brook didn't show but we still had a good time. I thought I saw my Dan and Florrie (my brother in-law and youngest sister) as the bar but they must not have stayed long.

Once I got started, I never got a chance to leave the stage. It seemed like every time I even thought of taking a break, someone with an instrument would join in. I met a new friend last night. A fellow by the name of Douglas A. sat up at a table with a big grin on his face as we sang. During a pause between the music, he asked if he could join in...he had his guitar in the car. We had a nice full sound coming from the stage last night. Douglas later told me that he knew Michael and Jim. He's a member of Mercy Hill and knew my pal Shane A. over there. It was nice making a friend and playing with him last night.

Tiffany H. appeared last night too. We invited her to play and she left to get her violin. Things took on another dynamic when she started. Really nice stuff. Gina had two d'jembes which allowed AJ join in. Rachael and Cherie have been singing with me for the past several months. It's always a treat to have them sing along with their intertwining angelic voices. It was so much fun. I can't wait to get hold of my Santa present so I can record these juicy moments.

Today, Sunday, I slept late. I was achy all over from the night before. Gina called me to breakfast (omelets, bacon, and toast) and I made it all disappear. Bad boy that I am, I went back to bed and rested my achy body between the warm flannel sheets. I can't express how good it felt. Gina let me sleep a few more hours. I then got up and started washing clothes, drug out the dreaded Christmas tree and lights. We all assembled it this time around and it didn't take as long as years before. The house was a mess and I've been cleaning and cleaning and cleaning.

My pal J. came over tonight. He was needed to print out some scripts. We are going to get together next weekend to pull together the CD tracks that I want to use for the PICKS project. He helped record My Desire last year...the track that's currently at my Myspace page. I like all the cuts I've chosen but have no clue as to the order as of yet. Maybe he can listen to these songs with fresh ears and give me some ideas.

Saturday, November 24, 2007

o boy

I know what I'm getting for Christmas. Santa was all this time because I haven't been a good boy in a long time. This here is a Zoom H2. It's got four built in mics and it's made for doing live recordings. It will also come in handy when I'm writing songs. Santa ordered a 4GB card for it so it will hold lots and lots of music. Hopefully, this will enable me to record all my stuff in the future. It's a little two track recorder to boot. I can record and then dump into studio software and sweeten all I want. How cool is that?
The girls (Gina, Katie & Kelsey) are getting ready to go out for the day. I am going to go down to the coffee shop and set up the equipment so I don't have to do everything tonight. Gina said she wanted to help. They'll head out shopping. Kelsey is in dire need of clothes...pants in particular.
Gina also wanted to put up the tree today. It's my least favorite holiday task, live or faux, I don't like putting up or trimming the tree. I am a dad so I put on my fake Chevy Chase smile and have it. "Come on kids...let's put up the Christmas Tree!" Time to pull out all the boxes filled with Christmas decorations. The tree always looks nice once we get it up and twinkling. The next thing to dread is when it's time to take it down...then on with the fake Chevy Chase smile again. "Come on kids...let's take down the old tree!"
It's been cold enough to start a fire in the fireplace. Jose' fixed me up with plenty of wood last year. I've still got a pile out there ready to light. I might fire one up this weekend, who knows.
Last night Katie and I sat up late and watched an old Jimmy Stewart movie called Pot Of Gold. It was a sappy movie but both Katie and I enjoyed it. I don't get TMC and I wish I did. I don't see anything on my Dish Network but Seinfeld and Frazier reruns. Let's not forget all those crappy reality shows. I went to Fred's Discount last week and found a DVD of three movies on one DVD for $5.00. Fred Astaire, Jimmy Stewart (Pot of God) , and Orson Wells (The Stranger). Anyway, Katie really enjoyed watching Jimmy. I need to show her Harvey (the one with the invisible Rabbit).

Friday, November 23, 2007


Great day. Gina and I hurried with food prep as we got ourselves and the kids ready for the day. We dropped some food by Brook and Jennifer's place before heading up to the mountain to celebrate Thanksgiving with Gina's side of the family. It was wall to wall food and people. I found a place next to my father in law Walter Hale during all the commotion. After eating and meeting, I went outside for a while where some of the men-folk had gone out and were talking about this and that. The children had made their way out into the cold to run and play.

We left around 2:30 to head back to Southside where everyone had gathered for the Finlayson's side of Thanksgiving. Everyone had just gotten there and had started eating. I was full from the Hale side gathering. I did chomp on an incredible salad that Brook had made. I am not a big salad fan but that salad was simply out of this world. There were three turkeys cooked three different ways. I had a sampling through out the night. Simply too much food to try it all. It all looked good though.

My favorite part of Thanksgiving is getting together with family and song. Mom told me after we finished that we had played three solid hours. Gina said she had counted ten guitars around the room. As the family expands, so does the Thanksgiving jam session. Wes Elrod and West Finlayson both played some stuff they were working on. They are quickly becoming pretty darn good guitarists. Emily (aka Foster) had her banjo and played some of her songs along with fellow Moonpies band member and beau Phillip (on bass). Gina took her djembe and my girls took all the jingle things from the house. We made a lot of noise and had a lot of fun.

As I mentioned earlier, I will be playing at the Coffee Vine Cafe' tomorrow night around 7:00. I hope that the Alabama/Auburn game won't stop too many of my family from showing up with their instruments. We'll see. I remember how game nights put a hole in the audience back in the Christian Brother's Skylight days.

Thursday, November 22, 2007

this is my dad

This is my favorite picture of my dad. I took this picture while the family sat around the table. There were some great shots on that roll. I just sat there and took pictures while everyone carried on -
a table full of Finlaysons, Noojins, Rakestraws and Elrods. It was always a very loud table when we got together...and we got together often in those days.

This is the only photo of my dad smiling the smile that I remember.

This was my father. I have lots of photos of him but this is the one that stands out. It captures his spirit. I've been thinking of my dad today. It's probably because the family is getting together tomorrow and he won't be there. It's been seventeen years and this picture is the only way I'll get to see his smile for a very long time. He never got to see my girls, never rode them on his lap. They never got to see that smile.
Dear God, thank you for all of my family. Thank you for Gina, Katie and Kelsey. Thank you for all my extended family and those loved ones that I call friends. I am a blessed man because of all the sweet people you've surrounded my life with. Thank you for this life.
P.S. Say hi to dad next time you see him.

Tuesday, November 20, 2007

something cool this way comes

I won't be singing at Coffee Vine Cafe' Friday evening but will be there Saturday evening with family members. Don and Jennie will be in town and said that they were going to try to make it. Brook told me that he was planning to be there. I hope they all bring their songbooks. Jennie has been writing some nice songs over the past year or so. I hope she'll bring her tunes as well as sing some of her songs. Brook said that he wrote a new song a few weeks ago. There are a good many singer songwriters in my family. I hope they all show up and all step up to the microphone.

Thursday, November 15, 2007

odds & sodds post

Michael's back at his old weird movies page Go check it out and bookmark it. A most recent post reminded me of the old WTCG (later to become Ted Turner's TBS Superstaion -the first super station ever). Back in the early seventies, Ted Turner was just stirring things up and television never got any better. Bill Tush doing a late night news. Real news mind you, but the guy delivering was a nut. I seem to remember a particular night when Bill was giving the news and some of the crew throwing a Frisbee back and forth behind his head. To think that these are the people that later brought you CNN (The Clinton News Network) and HNN.

Any who, WTCG used to have this show called Friday Night Frights with Dead Ernest. Old Dead was this guy that rose from a coffin and introduced a campy old horror flick. Dressed like a vampire who seemed to have found his wardrobe from the Hannah Home Drop Box, and vampire teeth that were too big for his mouth, Dead Ernest just wasn't very scary. He was funny...that is...if you could make out what he was saying with those huge faux teeth jutting out of his face. Great show!

Changing the subject, I sat downstairs watching Glenn Beck while going through old cassettes. I had headphones on and couldn't hear a thing Glenn was talking about. Gina was talking too but I was busy pushing play-forward-stop-eject-play-forward-and so on. Last Saturday night before recording at Vineyard, I realized that I had misplaced my lyrics to JERUSALEM. Anyone that knows me knows that I can't remember lyrics...not even my own. I looked everywhere and couldn't find them. It then struck me last night that I might have it on tape. All I had to do was listen to any tape made from 1989 on. I was fortunate to have found it on the second side of the second tape I listened to. I am going to try to record it with Jennie while she's in town for the Thanksgiving Holiday.

I have invited family to come to The Coffee Vine Cafe' the Saturday after Thanksgiving (24th) and join me on stage. Brook said that he planned on making it. Jennie emailed me a few days ago and said that she and Don were planning on being there. I am going to try to get as many of my singing and playing kin to play as possible.

Jose' is coming tomorrow to work on the basement. I am really looking forward to it. It's great to work with him and will be great to have my studio back.

I washed clothes last night. I heard something clanking in the dryer. Gina has a bad habit of not emptying her pockets before throwing dirty clothes into the hamper. Usually I get to launder and keep the cash I find. Last night I pulled out a fountain pen that she forgot about. The clanking persisted in the dryer. A few days ago I had let Gina borrow my 2gig flash drive for a PowerPoint presentation she was going to give. I guess I'll have to buy me another one.

Sunday, November 11, 2007


Today is November 11, 2007...11/11/07. The girls spent Saturday night with their grandfather. Gina and I got to sleep late. I woke up and made a big breakfast for the two of us. I ventured back to our bedroom afterward and glanced at the clock. Yep, it read 11:11. It's become a common occurrence in my life. So much in fact that I know to just keep an eye out and try to be sensitive to the spiritual. Eleven to me means Revelation or eleventh hour. I believe the numbers mean double revelation, to be on watch.

Nothing much happened today and nothing much revealed. Still though, I am going to keep my eyes open this week. I am not a follower of numerology but do believe that God uses different means to converse with us individually. Seeing 11:11 has become more of a tap on the shoulder, a spiritual heads up.

This 11:11 thing has been going on with me for the past five years or so. There was one point where I was seeing the number everywhere. It was during a time of hard change and much personal revelation in my life. Jose' told me at the time that he was seeing 11:11 everywhere too and told me that it was in fact a phenomenon going on. I believe it to be a God thing but that in the secular world, people don't know what to take of it. You can find a lot of mystics out there on the web giving their voodoo spin to it. I don't have answers mind you, I just take it as God wanting to wake up and smell the revelation. Today being the eleventh day of the eleventh month has made me kind of sensitive through out the day.

I didn't leave the house. I took this Sunday to rest from all the work that took place during the previous week. I was tired, sore and achy. Did I miss anything out in the world today while I was resting? Who knows. After breakfast I talked with Gina for a little while and then went back to bed and slept for hours on end. It wasn't a nap. It was a deep long sleep. My body needed it. I woke up as Gina came back home with Katie and Kelsey. I felt so refreshed.

I hope you all had a great day today. Enjoyed the fellowship, worship, or just stayed home to heal a little.
Oh-by the way, is the 11:11 thing happening to you too?

Saturday, November 10, 2007


I've been in the process of picking and compiling songs from various events that I've played over the past year for a CD. It's been a very long time since I've produced anything (1993) and I needed something current. Most of the songs are from different occasions at the Gadsden Vineyard. Though most of these live cuts are not perfect per se, I am very happy with the over all sound and dynamic.

Some of these songs are pulled for worship services lead by The Guise. Brook, Michael, LeNola, and Gina backed were on the team that I did Brooks old song Looking at the Future and my song Unrighteous Man. It was those two songs that initially gave me the idea for this CD project.

As I mentioned last week, I was on Bruce's team last week. Richard handed me the CD of worship last Sunday morning at You Are My God and Come Holy Spirit. I am very happy with how those two songs sounded and am going to include these two songs as well.

Last year Alan Rhodes and J. Holland helped me record My Desire in my basement. That song can be heard on MySpace profile page. It's the only multichannel recording I'll be adding to the project.

A few weeks ago I asked Richard M. to help me record some songs. I cleared the Vineyard building with Debbie H for tonight (Saturday). I asked Brook, Liz and LeNola to come bring their instruments and they were gracious to come and help out. I went in with five songs and hoped to maybe get three songs songs out of the process. We went through each song once so everyone could get a feel, then I told Richard to record. Most of the songs only took one take. Each take sounded great but it was nice to have two takes of I Want To Be and Cowboy Christmas. I can not express how happy I am to get these songs down, how good they sound and how quick we did it. Brook had a great guitar part for Deep Blue and Liz added a sweet harmony to the chorus. Very moving piece. She also added a nice vocal presence to Cowboy Christmas. I love LeNola. Anytime she's around me with her bass she goes into the Hold On riff. I wasn't going to record it without her. Brook added a Neil Young-ish guitar part to Living Water which made the song.

I walked away tonight feeling like I had something. I am thinking about asking J. to help me mix down a master. I don't know the order of the songs but I am happy with all the songs. I don't know how Cowboy Christmas will fit into the mix but I do recall Mark Heard throwing in Happy Cornbread Anniversary into one of his albums.

There are some other songs that I would like to add. I would love to record Jerusalem but wrote it with my sister Jennie singing it with me in mind when I wrote it. I will one day make that a reality and might have to put it on another like production. I've written so many songs in my lifetime and Gina has been wanting me to get them all down one way or another. I am going to do what ever it takes to record as many outings as possible. She wanted a recording of my songs as a Christmas present and I have written so many. As of tonight, I have enough to make a CD and am one happy dude tonight. The working title is PICKS.

Wednesday, November 7, 2007

into the closet deep

Last night I dug into my old cassette archive, old concerts, old recordings with family and friends. I pulled out about five tapes and skipped around and listened to some old memories. Most were recorded at Christian Brother's SKYLIGHT. One night (1985?) Brooky, Doug Moore and I swapped songs on stage. I was terrible, Brook and Doug shined. Brook was funny that night. Anything I said between songs, he had a nice put-down/comeback. Despite my sounded as if we and the audience had a jolly good time wot.

I listened to a couple of The Guise tapes (circa 1990). Brook, Michael, and I did some really nice stuff back then. We were pretty much the stage band for CBA in the late eighties. We would sing our original songs as well as songs of friends. Michael sang Pat Terry's song IN MY DREAM and I'd sing Malcom & Alwyn's FOOL'S WISDOM. The three of us did a nice version of AMAZING GRACE. I loved singing with The Guise and still jump at the chance to sing with Brook and Michael. We've led worship as The Guise a handful of times at Vineyard over the course of the last few years. I think we sound better now than we did back then. The recordings I have at Vineyard are a lot better than the old cassette recordings from SKYLIGHT. Still though, I am glad to have them.

Some songs The Guise sang:

Amazing Grace
Taking The Time
Where Are You Now
Insane Man
Sugar Blues
How Could You Be So Good
Jesus Knows All About It
My marriage and move to Bowling Green in 1990 ended The Guise as the stage band. I would drive down every now and again for some reunion gigs at Skylight. As Brook and Michael got more involved with Permanent Wave (while I was away), a great worship band. They sounded great too. I've got a cassette I need to dig out of the closet of them, the night Larry and Pearl Brick came to town. Permanent Wave was a different animal all together than what The Guise had been. I will admit that I really felt outside of a good thing back then. I would have loved to have been a part of that band but alack and alas. By then, I had recorded STAND and was playing a good bit around where I was living. That time playing solo did me a great deal of good but still, I missed playing with friends.

I laid down on the couch late last night with the headphones on listening to a tape that Brook, Dan, and I made back in 1995. Brook gave me a call while I was still living in Bowling Green. He asked if I would have a Saturday next time I was in town and play around with him and Dan. We met at Brook's house and he pretty much turned on his little portable four track recorder and just kept it running. I don't think we did much that day that sounded great but we had the best time. Last night I laughed at all our dialogue between the songs. That was the day Dan started improvising the song PULL THE CORN COB OUT. Maybe most people would think all that banter and small talk silly but I'll treasure that day.

I've got so many tapes filled with a million memories.

Tuesday, November 6, 2007

and then there's Barak

That presidential candidate who doesn't really go for that silly thing
American citizens do during the National Anthem.
Here's to that fresh face politician with all the new ideas!
Lead the way Obama!

Monday, November 5, 2007

liars lie...

My old pal Doug Moore sent this my way. I think it's post-worthy...seeing how major media don't like to uncover Clinton dirt.



Check out Bill Clinton's syrupy five minute ad for Hillary. He introduces the commercial by saying that he wants to share some things we may not know about Hillary's background. Bill's version of her biography is about as reliable as if it appeared in Bravda! So, since I, Dick Morris, was there for most of Bill's presidency and know them better than just about anyone, I need to make a few corrections;

Bill says: Hillary never wanted to run for public office, but she did want to work at public service. The facts are: When Clinton was considering not running for another term as Governor of Arkansas in 1990, Hillary said she would run if he didn't. She and Bill even had me take two surveys to assess her chances of winning. The conclusion was that she couldn't win because people would just see her as a seat warmer for when Bill came back licking his wounds after losing for president. So she didn't run. Bill did and won. There is no question she had her eye on public office, as opposed to service, long ago.

Bill says: In law school Hillary worked on legal services for the poor. The facts are: Hillary's main extra-curricular activity in law school was helping the Black Panthers, on trial in Connecticut for torturing and killing a federal agent. She went to court every day as part of a law student monitoring committee trying to spot civil rights violations and develop grounds for appeal.

Bill says: Hillary spent a year after graduation working on a children's rights project for poor kids. The facts are: Hillary interned with Bob Truehaft, the head of the California Communist Party. She met Bob when he represented the Panthers and traveled all the way to San Francisco to take an internship with him.

Bill says: Hillary could have written her own job ticket, but she turned down all the lucrative job offers. The facts are: She flunked the DC bar exam and only passed the Arkansas bar. She had no job offers in Arkansas and only got hired by the University of Arkansas Law School at Fayetteville because Bill was already teaching there. She only joined the prestigious Rose Law Firm after Bill became Attorney General and made partner only after he was elected governor.

Bill says: President Carter appointed Hillary to the Legal Services Board of Directors and she became its chairman. The facts are: The appointment was in exchange for Bill's support for Carter in his 1980 primary against Ted Kennedy. Hillary became chairman in a coup in which she won a majority away from Carter's choice to be chairman.

Bill says: She served on the board of the Arkansas Children's Hospital. The facts are: Yes she did. But her main board activity, not mentioned by Bill, was to sit on the Wal-mart board of directors, for a substantial fee. She was silent about their labor and health care practices as a Wal-Mart board member.

Bill says: Hillary didn't succeed at getting health care for all Americans in 1994, but she kept working at it and helped to create the Children's Health Insurance Program (CHIP) that provides five million children with health insurance. The facts are: Hillary had nothing to do with creating CHIP. It was included in the budget deal between Clinton and Republican Majority Leader Senator Trent Lott. I, Bill Morris, helped to negotiate the deal. The money came half from the budget deal and half from the Attorney Generals' tobacco settlement. Hillary had nothing to do with either source of funds.

Bill says: Hillary was the face of America all over the world. The facts are: Her visits were part of a program to get her out of town so that Bill would not appear weak by feeding stories that Hillary was running the White House. Her visits abroad were entirely touristic and symbolic and there was no substantive diplomacy on any of them.

Bill says: Hillary was an excellent Senator who kept fighting for children's and women's issues. The facts are: Other than totally meaningless legislation like changing the names on courthouses and post offices, she has passed only four substantive pieces of legislation. One, set up a national park in Puerto Rico . A second provided respite care for family members helping their relatives through Alzheimer's or other conditions. And two were routine bills to aid 9-11 victims and responders which were sponsored by the entire NY delegation. Here is what bothers me more than anything else about Hillary Clinton. She has done everything possible to weaken the President and our country (that's you and me!) when it comes to the war on terror.

1. She wants to close GITMO & move the combatants to the USA where they would have access to our legal system.
2. She wants to eliminate the monitoring of suspected Al Qeada phone calls to/from the USA .
3. She wants to grant constitutional rights to enemy combatants captured on the battlefield.
4. She wants to eliminate the monitoring of money transfers between suspected Al Qeada cells & supporters in the USA .
5. She wants to eliminate the type of interrogation tactics used by the military & CIA where coercion might be used when questioning known terrorists, even though such tactics might save American lives. I can't think of a single bill Hillary has introduced or a single comment she has made that would tend to strengthen our country in the War on Terror. But, I can think of a lot of comments she has made that weakens our country & makes it a more dangerous situation for all of us........She goes hand in hand with the ACLU on far too many issues where common sense is abandoned. She is a disaster for all Americans

Sunday, November 4, 2007

cream chip beef gravy day

I reminded Gina of the time change last night. I asked her to please help me wake up (the alarm is on her side of the bed) a little earlier Sunday morning. Bruce had asked me to help him lead worship. Gina ended waking me up earlier than I wanted to. It doesn't take me two and a half hours to get dressed and get to church. It might take a woman that long but not me. I laid there for about fifteen minutes and then regretfully rolled out of bed. It only took me about thirty minutes to be out the door. I had decided to go sit down somewhere for a hot breakfast. I don't go to Ryan's that much anymore because they are so expensive. I had water with breakfast and still can't get over that it cost me nine buck to do so. Anyway, I had a good breakfast. They serve cream chip beef on toast and I don't know why I love that stuff. It's something that my mom used to make for us kids way back when and I rarely get it these days.

There are some foods that mom used to make that were simply heaven on earth:
Butter dips: Thin biscuits baked after dough is thoroughly dipped in melted butter.
Hot Browns: It's basically an open face turkey sandwich. You toast the bread, top with sliced turkey, two bacon strips, white grave, and then place in oven to melt the shredded melted cheese that you heaped on lastly. It's a recipe that Dad brought back from a business trip in which he stayed at The Brown hotel in Louisville, Kentucky. You can get hot browns all over Kentucky but everyone has their own version of it. Most offer brown gravy and a tomato slice on top...feh...I like my dad's version the best.
I don't know why cream chip beef makes my favorites list but it does.

I still had time before church so I stopped by the office and checked my email, Myspace, and BlogNet friends. I then drove over and met up with Brook F. (who was doing sound) and Bruce C. (who was leading worship). Jim H. came in shortly afterwards to man the drums and Lenola B. came in around 10:00 with her bass (she had to work). We had a great time. I have a worship song that I wrote about 12 years ago called COME HOLY SPIRIT. It's a song that I don't sing that much because it's not always easy for me to sing. Bruce had called Saturday and asked me to select two songs to sing. I selected two of mine. I had second thoughts that I might be choosing my songs for reasons for the wrong reason (the other song I took was YOU ARE MY GOD). Still though, I took two other worship songs that I did not write just in case. When I got to the church, Bruce asked me what two songs I brought and I showed him. He smiled and held up his lyric/tab sheet for COME HOLY SPIRIT. The song was on his heart too! I was immediatley assured that I was hearing right the night before. It was a great time of worship. It was great hearing the congregation singing. They caught onto the songs. I know it's probably better to lead with standards that people are familiar with. He's been wanting me to sing my songs and appreciated Him wanting me to do so this morning.

After church, Mikey and Rachael invited my family to eat lunch with them at Cracker Barrel. We had to wait almost an hour to get a table. The crowd was almost unbearable. I was surrounded my people-people-people and too many tacky loud Christmas novelty thingies. I really don't need to go to Cracker Barrel much if I want to enjoy the Christmas holidays. We finally got our table and we enjoyed each other's company. I don't get to talk to Mikey much.

We came home and I crashed on the couch for a little while. The house is a mess and I am afraid I won't be able to whip things into shape by next weekend. We are going to have Kelsey's party downstairs next Saturday afternoon. I am going to get the old Christian Brother's popcorn popper going and make a huge batch of chili. Anyone who wants to come by and wish my child a happy fifth and have a bowl of chili is more than welcome. By the way, I make go00od chili.

Today I finished up some staining that I started Saturday. I finished stripping my office window and was later able to stain it. I have my office door stained now but haven't varnished anything that I stained as of yet. I hope to get that done during the course of the week. Jose' said he was going to try to come over sometime Friday and help me finish up some trim work. Much of the office is down and I can't wait to finally move in. We'll see. Jose' has been so busy these days. I don't get to see him as often as I would like. It was nice having lunch with him Friday afternoon.

Mom is doing well. She's had a pretty rough time of it as of late. She had her gall bladder removed this week. She was up and around the next day. She asked if I would drive her around town so she could do some errands. It's nice that she's feeling better than she has been. I had my gall bladder removed about seven years ago. It was amazing how little stomachs I suffer from since I had the procedure. I had severe stomach aches over the course of thirty years...needless pain. There is a down side to having a gall bladder removed. I won't bother you with the details.

MUSIC: I will not be playing much during the course of the holidays. I will be leading worship with Brook and Tommy P. on the eighteenth (Vineyard). Richard M. asked that we do an acoustic set. November the 24th, I'll be at The Coffee Vine Cafe' with family and friends. I am skipping December because there is so much to do Christmas-wise. Donnette (Coffee Vine) has asked me to play set nights come the new year. I told her that I would be glad to play the first Friday and Saturday night of each month. So come January...first'll know where to find me.

God bless you all. I think I've rambled enough.

Thursday, November 1, 2007


I spent Halloween taking my kids to a few church fall festivals in the neighborhood. They enjoyed doing the trunk-or-treat thing. I filled up on some hot-dogs.

Trunk-or-Treat isn't the same thing as going door to door. These days the Christian community is fearful of Halloween. Back in my youth we dressed ourselves up in scary costumes and raided as many of the Noccalula mountain homes that we could. We brought home tons of candy. I enjoyed roaming around dimly lit neighborhoods with my all my sibs. My last venture as a kid in costume was as Dracula. I would do my own make-up by that time. I believe I fixed my little sister Cindy's face up as a clown. Brook owned an old powder blue MG convertible. He drove us all around the mountain until our bags were full and it was too late to ring anymore door bells.

Do you remember Halloween Carnivals? Do you remember cake walks? I mean CAKE walks - not the cup cake walks they have today. R.A. Mitchell used to have a great Halloween Carnival. There was something going on from one end of that school to another. They also had a haunted walk behind the stage in the lunch room. For years, if a child happened to venture behind the stage, he/she would find a casket back there...creepy. A former teacher recently told me that the school owned the casket for well over twenty years.

I remember my childhood friend Billy Daughette had a weather balloon he'd ordered from the back of a magazine. Somehow he got hold of a bunch of leftover balloons from the R.A. Mitchell Halloween Carnival. He filled up that weather balloon and a bunch of us kids sat in a circle on his front lawn taking turns inhaling helium from that huge weather balloon of his. We'd each take a deep breath, try to talk, and then die laughing at the results. I surprised one of us didn't float away or bust a lung.

No, Halloween never bothered me. I never understood why Christian's got their panties in such a wad about it. It is nice at least that they offer alternatives. The fall festival alternatives are fun for the kids but just not the same. I came home last night and watched the recent remake of War Of The Worlds. I was determined to watch something a little on the spooky side on Halloween night. Mom had the girls upstairs going through all the their candy. It made me think of my youth...dumping my bag year after year on the living room floor.

By the seems to me that teaching kids that it's okay to accept candy from strangers from the trunk of cars isn't a very wise thing to do either.