Wednesday, December 30, 2009

holy roller

This picture brings back some memories. Dad had built that little pulpit and lectern.  He left it at Camp Bethlehem after he built a more portable, light weight folding pulpit that he could carry along with him for all his speaking engagements.  Dad also had this little briefcase PA (public address system) in which he'd plug his lavalier microphone.

As a lay-minister, he spoke at a lot of little churches in surrounding counties. I was asked to go with him to help set up his gear as well as push him around.  I remember being able to get his pulpit, wheelchair, and speaker in the back of the old Subaru station wagon.

Mom once mentioned to me that she believed dad would have enjoyed being a holiness preacher/evangelist rather than being an attorney.  Heck, all his close friends were not lawyers, but rather preachers and evangelist.  Much of dad's spare time was in study - prepping a lesson for a preaching date or a regular Bible study.

I spent countless Sunday mornings driving to and from little country churches as his right hand man.   Dad had lots of talks/sermons on file that he could go speak at the drop of a hat.  Dad was quite literally the preacher on wheels - ready to roll when ever a preacher  needed off.

Yep, lots of memories flood back via this old photo.

Tuesday, December 22, 2009

a little under the merry weather

I fell down a flight of steps the week before Thanksgiving. I'm pretty sure I broke my tailbone. It took two and a half weeks to get over the pain. Last week while working on the house I started feeling a pain in my mid to low back. I spent most of the past five days on my back.

Monday morning I went in to see the chiropractor. I got some relief but was still hurting throughout the day. I went back to the back doctor and she worked me over like a Waring Blender - Lord have mercy on me Ohhhhh!

I have progressively begun to feel better throughout today. I've been able to do a handful of chores here at the office today. My chiropractor told me to take it easy for the next few days. I still have work (as in 'lifting stuff') to do before Christmas Eve. The doctor gave me permission to 'milk' it for a couple more days.

The house is still a mess.

Tonight Gina and the girls are going to try to finish the cleaning and arranging that I started last week. There's some lifting that I wish that I could perform. I think I can figure the basement arrangement out with some minor shifting and less moving furniture out. We'll see. Kind of helpless at the moment.

I feel almost as if the holiday seasons have worn me out too soon.  Oh my!

Mother and Irene came over this weekend to treat the girls to an early Christmas present. They took some time to lay hands on me and pray over my back. I felt my little one's hands on me as well.

It's great that both Katie and Kelsey jump into prayer mode too. I believe they are going to be spiritual warriors in years to come. I desire for my children to have let the supernatural become a natural way for them both. I want them to be walking in faith, long before they set out on their own.

little santa

she stands a little over two feet
and a little over two years
katie looked up
in her childish awe
at the great looming twinkling tree
i sat at it’s base with her
looking at her
as she looked up
as if it were some kind of national monument
that had miraculously appeared
in our very home sometime during the night
she spotted little santas
mickey mouse
teddy bears
and she lit up
like a little tree herself
and giggling
as she stood there
oh my
oh look
what’s that?

this Christmas
promises many memories
for her
and mommy
and myself
tomorrow she will sit on santa’s lap
and tell him what she wants
she will ride on the carousel
and hold my hand
or run ahead
to see the lights burning
every where
every moment is Christmas
as I drive the van homeward at night
i hear her in the back
as she spots every light
on every house
that passes in the night
we’ll drive home slowly
and watch her
as she watches
the celebration
the brilliance
of Christmas time

she wants a red wagon
filled with grape lollipops
and sweet tarts
she wants to see lights
and more lights
and lights and laugh with glee

she brings Christmas to us anew
live it again
with her
as she experiences it
through her eyes
her gift
to us

David B. Finlayson
December 15, 1998

Monday, December 21, 2009

into the night sky

into the night sky
countless children gaze
in hope of a quick glimpse
a sudden glimmer
a silhouette
of an ancient ageless one
who comes from storybook pages
through the frosted panes
little eyes see
only the sea of deep space
of countless stars peering back
they then reason that
the old man must know
so they scurry
and scamper up
into their beds
to bury themselves beneath
warm patched quilts
sewn from old clothes
of children once
who also dreamed and hoped before
little ones
who looked for the impossible
and believed in flying sleighs
and hoof prints on rooftops
and a jolly old saint
who could slip down countless chimneys
in a single night
those were the days
and are now
as i marvel at my own little one
gazing into the vast night sky
or into colorful lights
and witness her burn just as bright
as i once did
so let it be
feed the merry flame
and beg a kiss beneath mistletoe
and know
that the boy is still somewhere
inside here
resurrected once a year
by memories stirred
and yet willing
for new memories to be made
and kept
right here
i am willing
i have my little window
in which I clearly see
she will sleep
and in the late moments of the eve
there will be movement
around the fireplace
faint noises in the living room
a moment of hushed magic and joy
as love is delivered
in the form of a toy

David B. Finlayson
December 14, 1999

Friday, December 18, 2009


Max Fleischer is one of my favorite animators. At the top of my list are the old Superman cartoons. The 1990's Batman cartoons were stylized after Fleischer's old Superman cartoons. He was also responsible for bring Betty Boop, KoKo the Clown (Out of the Inkwell) and Popeye to life.

Walt Disney has been mistakenly sited for binging synchronized sound to animation with Steamboat Willie. Not so - the credit goes to none other then Max Fleischer. Fleischer is one of the great pioneers of animation.

This Rudolf The Red Nosed Reindeer cartoon was produced after the war, and sponsored by Montgomery Ward. The last time I saw this cartoon was on the silver screen at The Alabama Theater in Birmingham. It was played just prior to It's A Wonderful Life. Good stuff.

Thursday, December 10, 2009

Ghosts of Christmas' past

This picture of our Christmas tree was taken in our living room at 2624 Scenic Hwy during the Christmas of 1986. The house had a beautiful bay window that overlooked Scenic.  We usually trimmed large trees, but they seemed even larger when peering in from outside.  The bay windows seemed to magnify the size of our Christmas trees.

Ours was a big family to begin with.  We quickly gathered even more family as siblings married and started begetting more loved ones.  Our family is still busy getting bigger.  I guess we will soon have to declare ourselves a nation.  I remember when we were only eight.

I can remember pretty far back - all the children lined up down the hallway behind dad's wheelchair - as if he himself were the great Polar Express.  We'd line up from oldest to youngest and push forward into the living room where Santa had visited.  It was always so nice of him to spread out the gifts around in specific areas of the room where the each child knew was his or her spot. Christmas sure is a busy time for Santa, odd that he would take all the time to spend arranging where each gift should go in a room.  I guess that magic dust he'd been snorting not only put him in an altered state of time,space, & dimension - but also made him very OCD.

Surely with all the gifts delivered via sled, that it must've taken poor old Santa several trips back and forth from the North Pole.  Then again, maybe he hitched a trailer onto a sled.  Do you think it possible to pull a trailer along with a flying sled?  It just pushes my imagination as to how it could happened.  Chalk it up to Christmas magic I suppose.

Christmas' come and go.  Each one a little different than the one before.  It's not very practical to believe that every year can be handled the same - something will change.  Today we all have to negotiate how our families can find time and a way to get together under a single roof.  No plan is perfect for all.  Even though our little nation grows, we are still family, still the same people gathering for a time to reconnect and celebrate the birth of our Lord.

Wednesday, December 9, 2009

raw nerve

Rush Limbaugh was recently on William Shatner's 'Raw Nerve'. It's a pretty good interview. There was a lot more to the interview that Rush said that didn't make it on the show due to time constraints. I'd love to hear what didn't make it.

This is part one of a three part interview.

Tuesday, December 8, 2009


'Scrooge' came out in 1970 and starred Albert Finney and Alec Guiness. This is a musical, and it's among my favorite interpretations of 'A Christmas Carol'. In this segment of the story, Scrooge gets wrapped in singing a song with the townspeople. He has no idea that they are thanking Scrooge for dying!

I have this on VHS with hope to find it on DVD sometime in the near future. A few weeks ago the family went to see the new Disney digital telling which is very impressive. The Disney movie scared Kelsey - she didn't like it. Gina showed Kelsey the Albert Finney version and she loved it.

Monday, December 7, 2009

Holiday Inn

Gina and I purchased 'Holiday Inn' (1942) at Walmart a few weeks ago. It's the first movie to have Irving Berlin's 'White Christmas' in it. The song went on to become one of the biggest selling songs in the history of music.

The movie 'White Christmas' was actually a remake of Holiday Inn. Though the movie White Christmas (1954) was in color, the first movie to be filmed in VistaVision, it isn't as fun and charming as Holiday Inn. Both movies though are well worth watching during the Christmas holidays.

We watched Holiday Inn last night. Kelsey needed to go to bed, but we let Katie stay up to see it. It was fun to see Katie reacting to this old classic. It was very enjoyable. By the way, the DVD we purchased has both the black and white as well as a newly colorized version in the case. There is also a CD with all the music from the film. The colorized version isn't the old Ted Turner colorized version - but employed a newer technique.

I will probably watch the color version while listening to the commentary. They've got some archived Bing comments in it that I am looking forward to hearing. I never really cared for colorization of black and white classics. Color had been around at that time - it was the choice of the director for the movie to be in black and white in the first place.

Yes, the name of the movie inspired naming the hotel chain.

I had the fire going all weekend long. It was a good little Christmas moment for me - watching this movie with Gina and Katie by the open fire. For some reason - Bing helps get me into the Christmas spirit.

Friday, December 4, 2009

my santa experience

Back in the early eighties I worked for a silk screen shop in Southside.  Rodco wasn't a very good experience for me.  The company was owned by two young quirky entrepreneurs. I was hired as a graphic designer for minimum wage to come up with t-shirt designs.  It was a bonafide sweat shop.

I remember a cold December morning when one of my bosses, Tim, came in holding a bag.  He plopped it on my art desk in front of me and said, "Put this on".  I looked up and him and then I peered in the bag. 
"I don't think so." I replied. 
Tim had a stern look on his face, "You will do it right now. We don't have much time!"
"What is this all about Tim?"
"Christy promised her students that Santa Claus would visit her classroom today and you're going to be Santa!"
Tim wasn't a very pleasant fellow to be around to begin with, and I certainly didn't feel like being bullied into playing Santa.
"Are you ordering me to be Santa because Christy has ordered YOU to be Santa?"
Tim was fuming. "I'm not taking 'no' for an answer David!  Get in the suit - we've got to go NOW!"
"Tim, you need to hurry up and get in the suit, because playing Santa isn't in my job description."
Darryl, my other boss, walked in about that time. "What's going on?"
Tim told Darryl about the great humanitarian deed he was making me do.  Darryl told Tim that he needed play Santa if I didn't want to.  I could tell that Tim wasn't expecting Darryl to tell him to go do his own dirty Santa work.

At that moment I decided to volunteer.  I told Tim that I didn't care to be bullied into it.  I didn't want to be Santa but I would do it.  I put on the cheap suit and sat in the passenger seat as Tim drove down the country road to Ragland Elementary.

When we got there, we walked down the halls together.  Kids peering out of windows as if they were convicts behind bars.  I could hear countless voices calling out my name.   I was immediately overwhelmed with children once I stepped into Christy's classroom.  Christy showed me to a chair and I got down to business.  I could tell by the clothes the children wore that the school mostly taught children of lower income families.  I remember the classroom had kind of a funky smell to it. 

Tim and Christy stood by the door as I put children up on my knee and listened to every wish and want.  There was a moment though that I will never forget.  A little girl crawled up on my lap.  I was about to ask her what she wanted for Christmas.  Her dirty little face looked up and she asked, "Santa, why did you not come to my house for Christmas last year?" 

Tears welled in my eyes and I had no response.  I just sat there and hugged her, not being able to say a word. I never played Santa again.  Santa writes checks that some parents can't cash.  Being a chubby and jovial kind of guy - I've been asked countless times to be Santa.  Hold a gun to my head and I'll just say No-No-No!

Monday, November 30, 2009

jump starting Christmas

As most of my family can tell you, I am not a big fan of trimming the tree. I can't stand it actually. I do put on a good show for the little ones. Gina asked me a few weeks ago what would it take to have a nice Christmas this year. I said, "let's forget the tree". I also mentioned how I would love to leave town and go to Bowling Green, KY for Christmas. I know that won't happen for sure. I don't think Gina and the girls would care for spending Christmas in a Holiday Inn Express.

So yesterday we assembled the tree. It's a nice looking tree. Now that it's up, I look at it and dread having to put it away come January. I can't explain why I feel that way about it. Gina, Kelsey, and Katie went upstairs and made some hot chocolate and cookies. Kelsey had a blast.

After the girls went to bed, Gina and I stayed downstairs and watched Christmas in Connecticut (1945). I don't recall ever seeing it before. We picked it up in the five dollar bin at WalMart a few days ago. It is a pleasant romp of a movie. I am not a big Barbara Stanwyck fan, but I've always enjoyed Dennis Morgan. I especially liked Dennis Morgan whenever he teamed up with Jack Carson.

This is a pretty good movie. Gina seemed a little hesitant about me spending the money on this movie, but she ended up really liking it. To my pleasant surprise, there is also two reel 1946 Academy Award winning short subject that's also part of the DVD's special features called 'A Star In The Night'. This little Christmas drama was Don Siegel's debut film. It's well worth watching.

After Gina went on to bed, I watched Robert Rodriguez's 'Planet Terror' by the warm Christmas tree light. Nothing says Merry Christmas like killing zombies.

Friday, November 27, 2009

Keaggy Interview

Master and the Musician...I appreciate Keagy's comments about 'being somebody'.

Thursday, November 26, 2009

jive turkey

Today was an unusual Thanksgiving. Usually there's lots of music. Family members get together to share a meal, bring their instruments, sing and talk. I nearly didn't bring my guitar, but Gina insisted that I take it. I ended up leaving it in the car. It's been a crazy week and I was in another zone today. It was a pleasant Thanksgiving, different from all preceding Thanksgivings.

The food was out of this world but I didn't fill my plate, nor did I stuff myself sick. I did however graze through out the evening. I sampled most of everything through out the evening, but never felt stuffed. No one pulled out their instruments. Everyone seemed to just want to talk and be together.

I didn't get to talk to everyone there. I did move around a good bit and listen in on some conversations and enjoyed a few intimate conversations of my own. Today was like tuning in and out of channels on the radio - wandering the dial - taking a little in here and there. Mine is a big family. Everyone is caught up in their own world and challenges.

Like I said, it was all different, but pleasant. I wouldn't wish it any different. I could have easily have stayed home and slept the day away. I am glad that I didn't. I am in a weird little mood today.

Wednesday, November 25, 2009

little time lately

My mind hasn't really been on blogging as of recent. Last few weeks I had my head buried in books. I was very relieved to have passed the exam last Saturday. I am glad to have it all behind me. I am now a nationally certified massage therapist. I am waiting for my license from the Alabama Board of Massage &Therapy to come my way. The board meets on the 30th and I should be good to go by the end of the year - probably sooner.

I was hoping that this week would be a little rest after the stress and test...not so. Sunday, immediately upon returning to Gadsden, I fell down an entire flight of stairs while looking at an old building on Broad Street. Gina and I are always on the lookout for a location for OTG - a place of our own. I didn't break anything during the fall, but I knew that I would feel it the next day. It's Wednesday night and I am still feeling it - especially my tailbone.

Sore or not - Gina was determined that I do some deep cleaning at the house. Monday I found myself on my hands and knees cleaning the carpet at the house. Don't let those machine rentals fool you - it's not an easy task. You still have to shift furniture around if you're going to do the job right. You still have to get down on your hand and knees to get rid of all those hundreds of stains. Machines are great - but there's no solution so far that can replace elbow grease. Cleaning the carpet took up the better part of two days. Poor Katie, I pulled her into the task and she worked very hard. I appreciated her positive attitude during the entire ordeal. She's a good kid.

Today was a little lighter. I did some cooking for Thanksgiving and some light house cleaning. I am still achy from the fall and from the floor work. I am still in the state of disbelief that I no longer have to study-study-study. I am on the other side of it now.

I haven't been to the office much these past few weeks. I haven't been around a computer as much. I feel as if my wheels are still off the ground. I am glad that I don't have to be studying, that's for sure. I feel as if I am in limbo.

Tuesday, November 17, 2009

the big one

I had to get out of the house for a little while tonight. I decided to come down to the office and piddle a bit. Gina has allowed me to stay at home this week so I can study study study. I'm heading down to Birmingham this weekend to take the national exam to become certified as a massage therapist. I am doing my best to re-familiarize myself with material I started studying over a year ago. This test will cover a lot of ground and I have an overwhelming amount of information to go over. This exam is the final hurtle. Do keep me in your prayers. I need peace and focus. I'll be taking the test this Saturday. The test will begin at eleven and I've got three hours to take it - pass or fail. Keep me covered.

Wednesday, November 11, 2009

USS LST-312 Gela, Sicily

USS LST-312 at right, approaching the beach with her ramp up and USS LST-344 left, along with numerous LCVPs from transports anchored offshore, beached while landing troops and equipment at Gela, Sicily, 10 June 1943.
US National Archives photo # III-SC 181046, Box 181, a US Army Signal Corps. photo now in the collections of the US National Archives.

This photo and information was found at

Monday, November 9, 2009

technical difficulties

For some strange reason beyond my control, my Boomerville blog isn't working quite the way it should. I have still been posting to it but the updates might not be showing up at your blogspot they way they ought.

Wednesday, November 4, 2009

Pearl Harbor

Months before 9/ll, the movie Pearl Harbor was released. I saw it at that time and was a little disappointed with it. I ran across of DVD of it recently and watched it again. I was still unimpressed.

The attack and the effects were breathtaking, yet fictitious characters, the love story took up most of the movie. I pulled the above image together because Pearl Harbor reminded me of the movie Titanic. In Pearl Harbor, they should have just as well have had hired on Leonardo DiCaprio and Kate Winslet for love interest part. Instead of the Titanic, they could have embraced each other on the bow of the Arizona.

Is it just me, or is Ben Affleck in every movie that was made?

I don't mind having fictitious characters in a movie - but there is enough of a real story to tell when it comes to Pearl Harbor. The love story, the idiocy of having the two old friends fighting over the same girl, just lacked imagination.

Directors I guess must have felt that they had to chic-a-fy the bombing of Pearl Harbor in order to get women into the theaters.

Hollywood usually does a great job at screwing up the depiction of a real event that had an abundance of real heroes. It wasn't Rafe and Danny that made their way to their planes to shoot down the attacking Japanese aircraft on December 7. In real life, it was two guys by the name of Kenneth Taylor and George Welch. Having two fictitious characters manning those planes is a disservice to those two very real gallant men.

At least that's the way I feel about it.

I feel the same way about the movie Titanic. This movie was a blockbuster hit, but I don't see it as memorable. The love story was okay, but it consumed most of the film. There was so much more to tell about the sinking of that ship. There were real people on that boat - and the fictitious characters overshadowed the real people, out-shined real heroes in that story. Both the movies Pearl Harbor and Titanic the same flaw. The special effects and details were incredible, but the real people who died in or survived those tragic events were only given supporting parts in these Hollywood productions. Both movies are worth watching once, but not worth revisiting.

Monday, November 2, 2009

i don't know why

I haven't been posting as much as of late. I don't know why that is. I enjoy writing, sharing with you the random thoughts and memories that run through my mind. It's probably because I've been so preoccupied with life.

The big test isn't too far away. I finally confirmed a time to take the National Certification Board that will make me licensed massage therapist. It's the last hurtle. I look forward to getting it behind me, but dread the test itself. I've got to make plenty of time to study, refresh my mind, learn stuff I have yet to learn. Egad!

Test date is set of Saturday, November 21, 2009. I hope you all keep me in your prayers. I look forward to becoming a therapist. I look forward to getting on with this area of my life.

Gina and I traveled to Atlanta the weekend before last to attend a lymphedema conference. Gina and I had a great weekend together. We've been so busy with life as of late that we haven't had a lot of time together. We enjoyed the weekend, even though we spent most of the time listening to lectures and garment vendors.

I've been asked to do some stand-up at Moonsong this Saturday night - the 7th. I don't have a routine. I'm planning on telling a lot of stories - stories that Gina's heard a thousand times. Maybe it's a good thing that she's out of town this weekend. She'll be back in Atlanta for a lymphedema round-table. Ron Greer had been wanting me to do some stand-up. He arranged it with Danny Moon for Saturday evening. I don't know what it will turn out like. I am going to have some fun - stir up some laughter.

Tuesday, October 20, 2009

Sunday, October 18, 2009

pet peeve

I try to avoid manipulative people. Sometimes I don't see it coming. The worst kind of manipulators I've come across have been fellow Christians. They want you to worship they way they do, believe the way they do, or just do what they want you to do. These are believers that use witchcraft in the name of God. 'Christian' manipulators apparently don't believe in free will. I really try to avoid these kind of people. It's not that I think they are evil, but rather they wore their welcome out with me many years ago. I am weary and wary of them. I'm just of the belief that God desires people to come to Him, pursue and serve Him of their own accord and FREE WILL!!!!

I do not mind doing good deeds for people, giving to people, going the extra mile - but I do not like to be played by someone who is just trying to get their way. I cringe and retreat when I see someone scheming and coercing in the name of God.

I can't stand manipulation by guilt. Those kind of manipulators are met (by me) by a stone wall or by getting laughed at. Both responses are quite appropriate. Usually guilt manipulators don't know when to stop - so I usually just have to just walk away and let them say what they will about me. I just don't play the guilt game anymore. They can think and say what they will - I'm out of there. The guilt thing was such an effective tool the enemy used against me for so many years of my youth - that I clearly see it coming these days. Guilt is no longer my Kryptonite.

As for favors and causes...I do free stuff all the time. Every once and a while, a serpent slips beneath my boundaries. I give of my time and talent a lot, so it's easier to fall for this kind of manipulation. I am just thankful that I see them coming - most of the time Well, it happened to me recently. I was taken in and had to constantly make my way through the web of simultaneous seemingly innocent and coincidental coercement. Well, I ducked here and there, but still got tangled in a few snares. I eventually I fulfilled my obligation and made a mental note to steer very clear of that person again.

This subject reminded me of a big time manipulator that used to hang around our coffeehouse back in the late eighties. He called himself The Balloon Man. Anyone remember that character? He was always wanting something from me (not little things mind you) but full time Christian service for him. One night he approached me and said to me (get this), "David, I am looking for someone who will serve me as I serve God!" I of course declined his generous offer. Another Saturday evening he announced to me, "David, I was praying to God last night and he told me that you would help me by becoming part of my ministry!" I politely told him that I had also been talking to God last night and that He mentioned nothing about it. The Balloon Man was an easy one to handle - always so full of himself (which was mostly hot air). Eventually, this guy got the message that I wasn't going to follow him or serve him as he served God. I am sure he came to believe that I wasn't a very good Christian. I never regretted popping his balloon.

So I am ever watchful and sensitive about such people and circumstances. In the future - what ever the great cause - I will avoid any endeavor organized by serpents. I know, there will be times I'll slip up.

Thursday, October 15, 2009


This is a clip for David Zucker's 'An American Carol' that came out last year. Enjoy!

Thursday, October 8, 2009

about free

nothing is free
there is a cost
maybe you
maybe someone else
someone has to pay
nothing is free
there is a price to every gift
given or received
never let anyone tell you
that a gift is free
nothing is free
there was a terrible cost
to the greatest gift of all
our atonement
paid in full
our life through His death and resurrection
free to you and me
but a cost nevertheless
the blameless life of someone else
absolutely nothing is free
so when a stranger offers you candy
there's always a cost
sooner or later
a price to be paid
when offered a gift
consider the giver
consider the cost
nothing is free

Monday, October 5, 2009

high church on a shoe string

I drove down to Helena, AL to lead worship at Coventry Anglican Church yesterday. Katie wanted to go with me, so I woke her up before the sun rose. We had a wonderful day together. The Coventry Church moved from Alabaster to Helena about six months ago. Though this wasn't my first time I've lead worship for the fellowship - it was the first time at their new location.

Katie and I got there very early. I allowed myself extra time so I could find the place. I drove straight to it and so we had plenty of time to walk around town. There's not much to Helena - which I think is part of it's charm. Very few people were out when we got there, so Katie and I walked up and down the small sidewalks and talked about this and that.

After our walk, Katie and I settled under the eaves of the storefront church and I tuned my guitar and went through some of the worship songs. It was a very pleasant experience to worship a little before the doors were unlocked. The service went well. It's a very small close-knit fellowship. Their new location suits them well. It seems to me that it's a great little area for a church to grow. There are lots of subdivisions around, with plenty of through traffic.

Father Russell says that they do have visitors, but not everyone can seize hold of the Anglican way of worship. It's a little different for me too. Nevertheless, I appreciate the pursuit of their worshiping God in a sincere and time honored tradition. It's wonderful to experience the lithology - traditional Christian worship from a people that are not exercising religious habit - but true worship. Sunday's service, as with the other services I've experienced with them, is very refreshing and meaningful.

At present I am Vineyard. I was raised in the United Methodist Church. I've spent much of my youth in an interdenominational coffeehouse ministry. Through out my life I have come to know many brothers and sisters from all denominations - all appendages of The Body of Christ. I never understood the division. Usually the theology differences are very minor. All have their calling and purpose - their own way of serving and worshiping God.

I always found it humorous when the thumb boasts of having more than the big toe (or the other way around). All members of the body bring something to the table. Again, I appreciate the richness of what is Anglican worship. I believe that God enjoys all the passion expressed from The Body as a whole.

Tuesday, September 29, 2009

waffle and a coffee

I remember on my birthday, my dad took me to the Huddle House for a waffle. I remember it happening at least twice as a kid. I'd be kept out of school for a few hours, long enough to drive down with dad and have breakfast together. Dad used crutches more at that time, and I remember opening the doors for him so he could make his way inside. We'd sit together I'd order my waffles and he'd listen to me talk about this and that. I also remember sharing a lot of meals with my father at the Murphee's lunch counter down at Agricola Shopping Center. I always enjoyed those moments.

Katie is like that.

If ever I want to treat my oldest daughter, I simply take her to the neighborhood Waffle House and have a meal with her. I'll let her order what she wants and sit back and listen to her talk about her life and times. We usually sit sipping coffee talking about God. Katie's very much into all subjects relating to God. She is really an excellent conversationalist. Having a father daughter breakfast together is a real treat for her. I am glad because it is for me as well.

It reminds me of times I used to have with my dad.

Gina doesn't really care for the Waffle House. It's not that she doesn't like the food, but because of the cigarette smoke that usually always in the air. If I am to go to the Waffle House, it is either alone, with a friend, or with one or both of my children.

I hope that Katie doesn't change in this regard. I hope that she will always enjoy talking with her dad over coffee and a waffle.

Monday, September 28, 2009

Monday is off

I almost made it to my office when I got a call from my 13 year old daughter, telling me that Kelsey was on the bus throwing up. I turned my car around and headed back to Southside. You should have heard the noise over the phone. Imagine a school bus filled with children, and then a little girl starting to projectile vomit within the crowded tightly enclosed space. I could just make out what Katie was trying to say over all the children freaking out - pure pandemonium.


I picked up Kelsey up and took her home. Gina cleaned her up and decided to keep her out of school. Her school teacher sent a bunch of work for her to do today. So I've been at the office playing teacher today. Kelsey is a real trooper.

I can't believe it's already after 1:00. It's been such a busy day already.

Thursday, September 24, 2009

wondering about tomorrow

Tomorrow, September 25, 2009, Muslims are gathering on the West front of the Capitol building for a national day of prayer for Muslims called Islam on Capitol Hill. The gathering will take place by the site where U.S. Presidents have been inaugurated since 1981.

It was only a few months ago when President Obama announced that America wasn't a Christian nation and later announced that America was a Muslim nation. Do watch the video for exact phrasing. Obama played down the National Day of Prayer back in October.

Wednesday, September 23, 2009

May God save the United States

Judge Roy Moore on the right to acknowledge God. Kayle Moore just sent this link to me. I hope the Judge wins the race for governor this time around. He's a good man.

P.S. Glad to see the Moore logo being used in this video.

Tuesday, September 22, 2009

are we a democracy?

I just saw this at my friend Jack Jackson's site. Pretty good clip.

Thursday, September 17, 2009

black Jesus

if Jesus were black
i would love Him just the same
i would still follow
if Jesus were black
i would still drink from His fountain
still bow at His feet
if Jesus were black
i would still be His bride
still vow my life
if Jesus were black
i would still give my all
still be His slave
if Jesus were black
He would still be The Christ
still be my King
if Jesus were black
His name still above all names
i would love him just the same
if Jesus were black
i would still drink from His fountain
if Jesus were back

-David Finlayson

Tuesday, September 15, 2009

hollywood is vacant

Yesterday I stumbled across a cluster of YouTube videos of www.hollywood,tv in which stars would respond to questions regarding their spirituality and God. I was saddened and yet not surprised.

Sunday, September 13, 2009

hurray for huluwood

I've watched some interesting flicks at during the course of the week. Free stuff and well worth the watch.

A Bucket of Blood
It had been decades since I saw this American International classic. Roger Corman is known for his low budget movies - and this one is worth watching.

Happy Town
I had never heard of this war time film starring Don Ameche. In Happy Town, Ameche plays a man coping with the lose of his son during the war. I can't really explain the movie - kind of sappy - but I am a sucker for the sappy of that particular era. A very young Harry Morgan (M*A*S*H) also has a great role at the end of this movie. I believe Irving Pichel (Miracle of the Bells) was mimicking the style of Frank Capra. Happy Town isn't a great movie, but was very enjoyable. It's nice to run across and old movie that I have never seen.

Haunted World of Ed Wood
This is an interesting documentary of the director of the worst movie ever made - Plan 9 From Outer Space. The documentary itself seems to be a low budget venture. I'll call it a B-Documentary, which is fitting for the likes of Ed Wood. What is interesting is are all the interviews with the actors and those who knew Ed.

If any of you have never heard of Ed Wood - go rent Tim Burton's 'Ed Wood'. It's a great movie. One of my favorite Don Ameche roles is a 1988 movie entitled 'Things Change'. Ameche had some more notable roles in two other eighties movies, 'Cocoon' and 'Trading Places'.

Friday, September 11, 2009

Firemen Hearing People Falling Through Glass - Jumping 9/11


Firemen on the ground floor of the WTC.

Thursday, September 10, 2009

happy family

Allen posted this on facebook today. I just had to share it.

Monday, September 7, 2009

Glenn Beck on Obama

labor day

Growing up on Lookout Mountain, there were a gazillion pine trees - half of which were in our yard on Scenic Highway. Our yard was so huge that it took a poor kid five hours to mow it with a push mower. I was that poor kid. There were always plenty of pine trees for every kid in the neighborhood to hide behind during a game of hide & seek. Ours was the yard to come to if you wanted to build a pine needle fort or have a good pine cone battle.

Every time I think of Labor Day, I think of pine needles. Labor Day to all the Finlayson kids meant laboring in the yard. We might have been freed from school work, but we were not free from raking pine straw. You wouldn't believe the pine needle yield we harvested each year. I spent all of my youth with the misconception that one had to work on Labor Day.

Today I am at the our clinic. Lymphedema patients need to receive five days of lymphedema treatment per week. This usually means that most holidays - Gina has to work. Since we've opened our practice, Gina works through most holidays and even on Christmas Eve. So today I am at the office thinking of the holiday and wondering why it works out in favor for so many families but my family. Labor Day is and I guess will always mean a labor day. No ribs on the backyard barbie, just ham sandwiches at the clinic. The upside to this Labor Day is that I still get to be with family, and I don't have to pick up a rake.

Thursday, September 3, 2009


My Uncle Buster died a couple of decades ago. I remember the drive Dad, Mom, and Grandmother Davidson and I made to the funeral. I drove them all down to the Anniston/Saks area (for visitation) in Dad's van. We then drove back in the procession for graveside service in the Alexandria area. We spent the better part of that day together.

I never want to h
ave to experience having to bury a child. I want my children to long out live me. Gina lost her brother Terry Hale to cancer about six years ago. I know the heartache it causes Walter and Betty Hale to this day.

Walter Ray "Buster" Davidson was the only uncle on my mother's side of the family that I knew growing up. The rest of the Davidson clan scattered like seed from Alabama sometime in the fifties and early sixties. It was nice to have Buster around. He used to come up to the house every now and then to sit on our back patio under the arbor and have long chats with his sister Esther. Like most Davidson men, Buster was a very quiet fellow. The Davidson men that I met were different than the Finlayson men. Finlayson men, like myself like to talk and carry on. Davidsons, the ones that I met had a quiet and strong way about them. Wish I had been around them all more. I'd like to have drawn those men out of their silence and listen to the stories of their lives.

I think of Uncle Buster, I see him sitting out back on our porch swing talking to mom on a Sunday afternoon.

Tuesday, September 1, 2009

19 years

Gina and I were married 19 years ago today. It's kind of hard to believe. We didn't do anything special today. We went to office and worked. It was a busy day and we were tired by the end of it. Maybe we can do something this weekend.

We've been talking about going somewhere special for our 20th Anniversary. I'm not sure where. We've always wanted to go to Maine for some reason. We've always talked about going to Scotland. Chances are - we'll end up in Chattanooga for a weekend. I hope not. It would be nice to go somewhere we've always wanted to go together.

We let this year's anniversary pass quietly - only with a kiss or two. Celebration or not - I know that I am a very blessed man to have that woman in my life.

Saturday, August 29, 2009

an ingenious bastard

Yesterday afternoon I started a movie that I simply could not finish. About a year ago I purchased a CD collecton (very cheap) of Western films that included a few Spaghetti Westerns. The movie that I could not finish was entitled 'Any Gun Can Play'. The producers, like countless other producers before, then and since, tried to capture and capitalize some of the success of Sergio Leone's grand Italian Westerns. This movie even started off with Clint Eastwood, Lee Van Cleef, and Gian Maria Volonte look-alikes. There were some very familiar scenes and lots of tight close-ups. It was too boring to continue. No one could ever equal Leone. You see, Sergio Leone was a great storyteller. I wish I had a few dollar more for every time someone tried to come close to what Leone did in his films. What Leone offered onto film was unique.

I've always thought of Quentin Tarantino as sort of a Sam Peckinpah. Sure, Kill Bill I & II had Leone influences, but Tarantino has a very dull edge to his storytelling. Peckinpah was a bit edgy and graphic when it came to his storytelling. Quentin Tarantino's most recent work seems to be more of an homage to Leone and the Spaghetti Western from the very first frame of the movie 'Inglorious Bastards'. No. Quentin Tarantino is not a Leone mimic, he has his own brand of storytelling. He can pay homage without making copies of the masters. Tarantino is a master.

There is no mistaking this - Inglorious Bastards is a Spaghetti Western - only with cowboys and Nazis. I have witnessed many attempts to revisit the Spaghetti Western genre, and this movie is the first to have captured what I first experienced with Sergio Leone films many-many years ago. Quentin Tarantino not only can create the imagery, but has the slow fuse timing of a good Spaghetti Western.

I've never seen anyone handle blood quite like Qeuntin Tarantino. I've known no other director turn violent movies into an art form. Tarantino splashes blood onto celluloid like Jackson Pollack would paint on canvas.

Bloodletting aside, his characters, though sometimes stereotypical, have depth. Tarantino's plots are winding narrow roads which are needless to guess where they lead. In 'Inglorious Bastards', there are moments of film that are as awe filling as moments experienced in Orson Wells' 'Citizen Kane' or David O Selznick's 'Gone WIth The Wind'. Though I can relate Tarantino to many great directors - Quentin Tarantino offering is every bit as unique as the masters who have gone before him. His movies should be classified as a genre unto itself. There are so many familiar nuances experienced in his works - flavors and feels of movies past - yet his storytelling is his own.

I went to the drive-in last night to watch Inglorious Bastards on a bad weather night. It made no difference. The rain let up, and I put my folding chair front and center of the big outdoor screen. I listened to the sound through my headphones/mp3-FM player. I enjoyed this movie at face value - all those interesting and dangerous characters - all the conversations and tragic events strung together. There were moments in this film in which Quentin Tarantino created that are different than anything ever captured on film before- moments so memorable and timeless.

Quentin Tarantino isn't for everyone. I wouldn't recommend his films to just anyone. His stories and imagery are brutal to say the least. Even so, he is to me one of the finest directors living today. He isn't just a skillful director - he is a true artist. He is an ingenious bastard.

Thursday, August 27, 2009


This is an image I stumbled across of one of my older sisters, Jennie. I have four sisters total. This meant that it was always difficult to get to a bathroom in the mornings growing up. I have two older sisters, Jennie & Irene. I also have two younger sisters, Cindy & Florrie. The guys in our family were outnumbered, but it was a great time growing up.

I see Jennie the least, she lives out of state and it's rare that we see each other. This is a great photo of Jennie. It had some minor water damage and scratches that I had to touch in PhotoShop after scanning.

Below is the most recent image of Jennie from the Winthrop University website. She's still pretty and radiates the same smile.

Wednesday, August 19, 2009

stir crazy

My mind has been on a road trip these past few months. Everybody has taken off on vacations and I've been nailed to the school, home, and office. I'd like to get out. I'd like to play again. Gina suggested a few months back that I hit the road on a mini-tour after I get out of school. Maybe I could bring back some money to help pay for those hospital bills that keep coming in the mail. I don't see a mini-tour happening until I get the national exam behind me (for massage certification).

I had this wild idea when I do get my certification. I'd like to go places and sing and take my massage least a massage chair with me. Massage is not only healthful and relaxing - but to me - it's a form of laying on of hands. I'd like to incorporate that somehow into my future road trip ventures. Massage during the day, gigs at night. Maybe soon - maybe in the distant future. This is a seed of thought that I'll pray about and see if that seed is meant to grow or not. Who know.

Either way, I'd like to play again. First things first. I need to get the exam behind me. In the meantime, I'd like to finish my 'Picks' - a compilation CD of mostly live recordings. Brook and I once took a week long trip (about 12 years ago) down in the pan handle of Florida and New Orleans. We had a great venture together and I'd enjoy doing that again. I really don't know if I'll fly solo or bring along a friend. It would probably be easier to just go it alone - but company and a road companion is always fun. Who knows - maybe Brook can finish his CD and we could go share the stage.

I've always have enjoyed the small venues - the coffee shops - the backyard concerts - street concerts - and small church gatherings. These kind of venues do not pay much, but I enjoy the intimacy. I know this comes from growing up part of a coffeehouse ministry during much of my youth.

I do miss the early years of my marriage when Gina and I could hit the road together. Not having my companion with me took a lot of fun from the venture. We used to have the freedom to go on the mini-tours together after the release of 'Stand'. We just can't travel like we used to do.

Anyway - I've got things to do first. I am thinking of the road - thinking of places I'd like to sing - people I'd like to see again. Companion or not - I'm looking forward to playing again.

Tuesday, August 18, 2009

Friday, August 14, 2009

Thursday, August 13, 2009

it's over man

The last year has been a wild and busy ride. I've been in school while dealing with various health issues. I really began to feel my age once classes began. It would have been nice to have done this earlier in my life and pre-diabetes. If I forgot a med for high blood pressure or blood sugar - or strayed too far from proper diet - I wouldn't get very far. Who would have thought that schooling would be so stressful.

I enjoyed the classes and the instructors were caring and good folk. They take pride in their work - determined that we learn what it takes to not earn the title - but to become good therapists.

Every week for me was a marathon of learning about the workings of the anatomy - muscles and massage modalities. We were tested and validated every step of the way.

I didn't want to spread the program out anymore than I had to so I signed on for 11 credit hours at the beginning of the Summer. I knew I filling my plate to the max. Tuesday night was the final hurtle. I felt like I tumbled through the last few weeks. I looked at my final grade point average - 4.0 (total quality points = 44.).

I could not have made it without Gina. She took the load at the office so I could stay home many days and study. She really got behind in her work because I wasn't there to help out. Gina also took care of things on the home front. She took care of the bills and kept the kids fed, clean, entertained and put to bed. She wanted to help me with my studies but she had more on her plate than I had on mine.

Well - it's over. The next step is studying for the big one. The test that allows me to hang a massage shingle in front of the clinic. I plan on jumping into continuing education for lymphedema after I pass the board. First things first.

It's a strange feeling to walk away from this experience. I've been spending most week nights in class rooms and labs. I got to know a lot of young classmates that have become friends. People that were down with the same struggle. I spent hours upon hours with teachers who I also became friends. It is a strange feeling to not see them all daily. A season of my life has passed - such is life. It's time to press on.

Monday I will be joining the handful of classmates that have finished the program. We are going to have a last supper of sorts with some of the instructors. I think we are going to get our certificates as well - maybe pinned. Maybe Monday will offer a little closure. The program was hard and fast. I feel guilty for no reason - for not studying for another test or feel guilty for not being somewhere that I am no longer required to be. Am I making sense? It's over man - it's over!

father of the electric guitar

The original guitar hero, Les Paul, just passed away at the age of 94 (1915 - 2009). Les Paul made such a contribution to music that I really believe someone ought to name a guitar after him. Godspeed Les.

Wednesday, August 12, 2009

soldier demands apology from his representative

Here's a prime example of what the Democrats are calling an angry mob. I had rather refer to them as 'WE THE PEOPLE!"

Tuesday, August 11, 2009

Monday, August 10, 2009

fat man on a bike

I got my nephew to spruce up my old bike a month ago. The poor old bike had been hanging on the garage wall for the past decade. The last time I rode it was along side Nori Kelley in the mid-to late 90's. There was a short time that we would meet and ride together. There are too many hills in my neighborhood and I only have so many gears. So many hills and all those territorial-minded dogs! Why oh why did I purchase a five speed mountain bike? The only time I got away from them was down hill - unfortunately they would get me on the way back home.

Heck, I'd never even heard of a mountain bike until the day I bought one. Back in the late eighties there was a bicycle shop on Forrest Avenue called Alabama Outdoors. My brother in-law, Dan Noojin, and I spent a good bit of time together during that time. For some reason he wanted to stop in there and look around. I don't recall Dan ever owning a bike - but he had apparently been in there several times before. There were no cheap bikes in that store. There wasn't a salesman in the place, but for some reason Dan took it upon himself to sell me a bike. To this day I have no idea why he talked me into it. I wasn't in the market for a bike.

At the time I was living downtown and had a job downtown. During Dan's sales pitch, I started imagining what it would be like to cruise around downtown to and from work. I bought the bike and started riding it everywhere. I am sure that Dan was trying to get me out of the house more. I am a bear that enjoys the cool dampness of his cave. Riding a bike took me outside. I rode the bike to work and back. I rode the bike to the grocery store down the street. I'd often carry a sketchbook and spend an evening down at the Chestnut Station ilustrating this and that. I was quite the bohemian. My favorite time and place was downtown Gadsden at night. I had the roads mostly to myself.

A few years later Gina and I got married. I bought her a ten speed Schwinn for her birthday one year. We enjoyed many weekends tooling around Bowling Green, Ky together. We'd go and have picnics at the parks, carry along tennis rackets on our backpacks, or just ride around town. We were in pretty darn good shape back during that time. I had a bicycle rack that we would strap onto the back of our car almost every time we went on a trip. We enjoyed going to various small Kentucky townships and cruising the small town scene.

Now that I am an overwieght fifty year old man (51 come the 19th) - I've taken to the old bike again. I really need the exercise to knock the blood pressure down - as well as take off some pounds. I rode it to the post office and back. It's been a very long time since I rode that thing. I enjoyed the quick venture. I came back kind of hot and sweaty - but at least I didn't get run over by all the downtown afternoon traffic. It looks like I'm back in the saddle again. Funny how I never intended to buy it that day - never intended on spending all that money on a bicycle. Glad I did though. I never got rid of that ride because of all the good memories attached to it.

closer to the end

We got the kids off to school this morning. Katie is starting 8th grade and Kelsey excited to be starting 1st. Summer was fast and hard. The kids spent most of their Summer days at the office. There were a handful of days where they were home - but they seemed to enjoy the office over home. We cut off the satellite dish at the first of Summer in the attempt to get on top of bills. Gina purchased season tickets to Alabama Adventure and the three of them enjoyed some adventures together while I was in massage clinic. It wasn't an eventful time for them - but they did get some exciting moments with mom.

I feel kind of strange. School is starting for everyone and I am wrapping it up at Gadsden State. There isn't much for me to do tonight other than just show up. I did my hands own final last week and will be sitting around for six hours while the students who didn't get theirs in last week do theirs this week. The instructor said that she will give us a study guide for tomorrow nights written final. Tomorrow night is my last night of school. I am in a strange mood. I've been in that environment for a year now, and it will be strange not spending most of my evenings there.

Don't get me wrong. I have anticipated this moment for quite some time now. I am very weary. The biggest hurtle is passing the National Exam. That's the next challenge. I have really felt my age this past year. The stress of constantly studying for tests, long days and nights, really put me through the ringer. I seriously don't think that I could have lived through the program if it were a two year endeavor. Not only am I 50 years old, but I've got diabetes and high blood pressure. Physically, I feel as if I am just stumbling over the finish line.

Boy, I remember those first massage clinics that I had to build up the stamina to give six massages in a day. Saturdays we were required to do six - Thursdays four. Thursdays were always the roughest because there were fewer breaks in between massages. Last Thursday was my last clinic. I only had one massage that night. I had already fulfilled the 45 massage requirement for the semester. The last two Clinicals were a piece of cake. We didn't call to confirm appointments for those who had their hours - and took only those that showed up. I was relieved because physically - I was sucking wind. I did enjoy giving that massage that evening. I can't explain it. Quietly laying on of hands, focusing on the client's needs, and a little banter and laughter here and there.

I'm not out of the woods yet - but it won't be long now. I didn't do a darn thing this weekend. Gina let me crash downstairs Saturday an Sunday. I needed it. Tonight and tomorrow night - the beginning of the end - the end of the beginning.

Thursday, August 6, 2009

dissidents to official state policy must be found!

Email The White House immediately at if you know of anyone sending you emails, or posting information that speak against Obama's health care plan. The White House is also urging citizens loyal to Obama to also be informants. The White House needs to know the names of those who also speak against Obama's policies in casual conversations. Washington NEEDS YOU!

Wednesday, August 5, 2009

boldly going where every socialist has gone before

No, I didn't PhotoShop this image. I wish that I had. I did come up with an apt title for it, "Live short and don't prosper."

Saturday, August 1, 2009

Kelsey on Keaton

While at MoonSong Songwriter's Cafe' a few weeks ago, my six year old daughter discovered Buster Keaton. I watched her from across the room as she giggle and laughed at the silent movie being shown as the musician played on stage.

She came to me later and asked if I would get them to play the movie again - only turn the sound up. I told her that the movie had no sound - that it was made before people knew how to make movies talk. I told her that Buster Keaton was my favorite of the silent movie era stars. She then asked if we could find some more movies of his so we could watch them at home.

It's true. I've always liked Buster Keaton best. The world around him was a dangerous place, filled with dangerous contraptions. Buster seemed to nimbly leap from one oncoming death defying circumstance to another. Buster never used a stunt man. He told his production crew to never stop the camera until the shot was in the can or he were dead. He was a comedian that always brought nonstop laughter - yet his character rarely smiled. Buster Keaton was his own straight man - with eyes so melancholy.

Last night before going to bed, after a story, a prayer and a big hug, Kelsey asked me about him again. It had been two weeks since Kelsey had been introduced to Keaton. She remembered his name and asked me when I could find him for her. I of course will be more than happy to go looking for him.