Wednesday, January 31, 2007

Just in Case I get a Chance to Wet a Hook

"Share five off the wall, strange, unusual or just little known facts about yourself.” Part 4
Does "Stupid" count?
I packed up and took with us all my Fishing Gear...
for my Honeymoon.
Thats it.

You will not want to miss part 5...

Monday, January 29, 2007


"Share five off the wall, strange, unusual or just little known facts about yourself.” Part 3

In Little League, I hit two Grand slams in the same game. I used to steal my way from 1st to 3rd and then steal home. I was the Star pitcher and once pitched a "No Hitter", at least until the Coach pulled me in the 5th inning. All of this was when I lived in Detroit. When I moved to Texas in the 6th Grade I found out that these country boys down here were physically about a year ahead of the kids up north.
Though I played Football, I was never really worth a darn. I wore black glasses under my helmet and my nickname was 'The Phantom". Most unkind. (to be cont.)
I have rolled a 300 bowling.
I was a pretty good golfer at one time.
But my real passion is for a fairly unusual game.

I love the game of Badminton, and if you think its a sissy game, I will invite you over to try to take a point away. I have a $60 Racket. I'll let you use it.
The beauty of Badminton is this: the Birdie (shuttlecock) moves slowly...It comes off of the racket at over 100 mph (the world record is 205mph, 50 mph over the record in tennis)) but slows very quickly. What this means is that if you anticipate and hustle your ass off, you can return most any shot! Which leads to some 30 and 40 shot volleys. That is a blast!

Unlike Tennis, you will not see too many 'aces".
And unlike Tennis, it does not require lessons or a great skill level to have fun playing.
It doesn't take long to be able to serve and retun and volley.

I can play by myself...I hit the birdie against a wall and back again on the bounce. I can keep it going for 30 to 40 hits sometimes.
I had vaulted ceilings at one time that allowed me to move my furniture and play indoors.
If thats not "off the wall", I dont know what is!


I have owed ya'll the last several posts for some time. My story can't be told without the telling of Arnold's story, and my story may be my confession; if my story is not unique, my confession certainly is. So I shall consider the last 3 posts to be the first of the tag titled ""Share five off the wall, strange, unusual or just little known facts about yourself.” My mask removed.

I think the music I listen to would qualify here. Take a look at my profile to start. Even the ones that are World Famous somehow manage to fly underneath the Radar of Popular Music. Lets add on to that list with Bob Mould, Jack Johnson and Ben Harper, the Oyster Band, Three men and a Dog, Hopskip&wobble, Jimmie laFave, Christine Lavin, Cheryl Wheeler, and Sonia Dada.
While you may have heard of some of these, most of my freinds had not, and really don't care for what I have found. They are too into either "Classic Rock" or the Commercial Songs of the week as performed by Cellebrity Artists of the week...
There is some Classic Rock I can enjoy...the cuts from an album that are forgotten while we hear the same 'hit" time after time as though we have never heard it before. 'Stairway to Heaven" may be a great song, but I have heard it... enough to hold me for many years. right now I would like to hear ' Battle for Evermore" from that Album.

I like a Middle-Eastern sound...from what I understand Middle Eastern music has many other scales besides major and minor... whatever that means.
Music creates a sense of Truth and Beauty through Aesthetic expression.
I know what I like.
There are some songs that just aren't supposed to be popular, that are not to be measured, that are just to be enjoyed for depth and texture. They are beyond the BOOM-BOOM-CHUCK that seems to be the order of the day. Possibly they were not written for anything but for the pleasure and experience by the Artist. I think it is this type of artist, the one that does not write with the listener in mind, but seems to write for the Art itself, that I am drawn to.
Loreena McKinnet has probably made the biggest impression on me the last 12 years.

I love looking through the throwback shelves at the Half Price bookstore.
I love listening to something I have never heard before.
I have great admiration for those that may never achieve fame, but continue to produce their Art, their way.
I don't have XFM Radio, but I hope that it will continue to promote the lesser known Musicians and educate the listener.

Once I had a name,
forgotten now
I breathed the air in a century of wonder

I can hear it now
in the darkness of the earth
Gorgeous machines, the sound they made like thunder

Great gardens drip honey-
jewels and bright birds
The pageants pass down avenues of splendor

Ah, long afternoons
by enchanted lakes
Upon elephants, so well I do remember

Lords and priests and talking beasts
Golden calves and telepaths
Crystal skulls and screaming gulls

Women glowed tattooed with woad
Colored mists and amethysts
Men were strong and days were long

Dragons glide on mountainside
Mandrake root and angel fruit
Sighing winds on silver skin

Creation transubstantiation
Unicorns, electric storms
Tunes and runes, we laughed till noon

Sweet release, eternal peace

The Church from "Sometime Anywhere"

This is a very strange band. I looked up one day and I had more of their stuff than anything else. They always seem to finish their album with a very beautiful song, usually an instrumental and this is the last tune on "Sometime Anywhere".

Don't run out and buy this Album; get "Preist= Aura" instead.

Saturday, January 27, 2007


I was at the end of the rope...
For 4 years I had been trying to make a living a a Tilesetter. It had become a slow torture; I would make 1000 dollars one week, only to spend the next 3 weeks trying to find more work. Twice I had been to the very edge, ready to go to the Apartment office to tell them to start the eviction proceedings. This last time, I had actually been to the Office, and an hour later a knock at the door brought me more work and prolonged the torture another six months.

With no money and no work, a vehicle on its last gasp, no where to go, any favors from friends having been depleted long doesn't speak well for lets just get to Arnold shall we?

Arnold is a lifelong friend of Sparky, the mother of XMrs B.Holes. He had an empty trailer. His no good son had moved out of it and it was available to me if I needed some place to go. They said the Trailer was in bad shape. I had no where else to go.
I took the first load of stuff over. It was uninhabitable.
I had no where else to go.
At 3;00 A.M. a few nights later I took the last load over.There was Ice on the roads and it was cold.
I wept.

Arnold had been injured in his teens and was blind. He was raised on a farm. They had a lot of Dairy cows and as a boy he milked them every morning. He says the hardest part to milking a cow is keeping it milked.
He said he picked a lot of Cotton too. He told me all about what that is like, what it does to your fingers and back, how thirsty you get, and how little it paid. I met his mother, she turned 101 last year, and her story was a little different. She said that the only cotton Arnold ever picked was what falls off around the big hoppers they put it in!
Arnold still maintains that he picked a lot of cotton.
When he was a young man he left home and was able to work and take care of himself. The Lighthouse provided both lodging and employment.
Arnold met Mary and they got married. She was the daughter of the local Pharmacist, and they had become friends as Mary would fill Arnold's prescriptions. I asked Arnold how and when he knew that he loved her not being able to see her and all.
"I just got to a point where I wanted to be around her all the time, and she always smelled so good. She seemed like an Angel to me "
Arnolds vision was at about 80% when he was younger, but declined slowly over the years.
They lived in a small town just outside Fort Worth and at some point the town needed a Garbage Truck and an Engineer. Mary drove the truck and Arnold loaded the truck. Not only was the pay pretty good, but this way they could be together all the time. I think this is very Romantic!
Arnold is pretty amazing-the things that he can do are astounding. I have seen him drive nails with a hammer, remove and replace the Radiator on a Car, and he actually worked as a Plumber for years.
He has 2 sons, my age, that are never around unless they are unemployed and need a place to stay, or they have just stopped by to steal something. Apparently they aren't too shy about stealing, and Televisions have disappeared while he was in the bathroom.
Mary died about 15 years ago.
Into the night, an Angel to be.
He said that he had been eating an awful lot of Bologna and Hot Dogs ever since then, and as much as he liked them he sure did enjoy my cooking. My Beans and Hot Water CornBread were especially prized.

For almost a year and a half I stayed at Arnolds. I didn't work much, part of me didn't care if I ever worked again or not. I enjoyed Arnolds company as much a anyone I have ever known. I can think of no one, my kids included, I would rather cook for.

I'm not sure that there is anyone in this world I am as thankful for as Arnold.

(to be continued)

Friday, January 26, 2007


I got to foolin' around with my "Got Milk" post and managed to lose the bottom portion. Lucky for me I had a this is continued from the previous... and then we will have talk about Arnold...

I tell ExMrsBulletholes that we are doing well, but the child does miss her Momma.

"I miss her too" ExMrsBulletholes says over the phone "Are you taking good care of her?"

"Oh, yeah, we are fine. We had rice with peas and some Broiled Chicken last night."

"She ate peas? She never ate MY Peas"

"Well I always told you to get the Frozen, not the canned" and I laugh, hoping to keep this from getting too intense.

"Do you have milk?" she asks "You must have milk for her... always" "And toilet Paper, you cannot run out of toilet paper…" She is gettin' a little wound up.

"Yup, we got both of those" I try to assure her.

"Do you have enough? You know she will need more than you do..."

"How long will 48 Rolls last?" I ask.

"You have 48 Rolls of Tissue?"

"Yes, we sure do. Got the really good kind. Spared no expense"

There's silence on the line now. I'm looking like father of the Year. I have her almost at bay and add that:

"I pamper her, everyday I pamper her"

"Pamper, you say?"

"Yes ma'am, pamper I say! I do her Laundry, I serve her whatever she wants from a tray, I do all the Cleaning, and whatsoever she may desire, I fetch right away!"

There is another bit of silence. Its that really loud silence too.. and I realize that I have laid it on a little too arrogance will cost me...


The XMrsBulletholes. She got me, but I'm not going down easy…in my most confident matter of fact voice I counter with;


We are both giggling a little now, for different reasons, and for the same reasons, and its nice that we can be easy.




Another long pause…there must be something I did to Pamper her...theres got to be...

"Remember how I used to shine your shoes, Baby.?"

Pretty weak, I can't believe I even tried that.

A slight pause and she says:

"That’s OK, Jeff (her hubby) doesn’t know how to pamper me either…

and don't call me "baby"!!!

And we just laugh!

She's OK, that XMrs. Bulletholes!!!

I have to say she got me this time.

She will move the Heavens and Earth for her kids...

Thursday, January 25, 2007

Got Milk?

The Ex Mrs Bulletholes called to check on the Water Baby.

"How is our girl" she asks and I can tell that she is missing her Daughter.

"She's real good, just real good and she misses you, I think."

Water Baby has lived with me since September. The question was asked by Mother of Invention if she had come to visit me while I lived in an old burned out trailer.

The answer is yes, a few times. But we stayed next door at my good friend Arnolds. Arnold is a Blind Old man, and if it had not been for his charity and Grace… well as bad as things were they can always get worse.

Believe me.

Arnold and I made good company. He is one of those plain talking souls that has no motive, agenda or spin to sell. Sometimes we would talk, sometimes we stayed quiet, and sometimes we would put on a Movie and I would describe the action to him, pausing during the dialogue.

His Favorite was "Dances With Wolves" and I bet he could tell you more about it than most people with vision.

A diabetic, he has been blind since his teens, he is 82 now. I enjoyed cooking and caring for him, but make no mistake... I was all the way broke down and were it not for him I would have been under a Bridge somewhere. (to be continued)

Tuesday, January 23, 2007



I remember the Night I was passed out at a party, and starting to spin from all the beer I had been drinking when the song "The Fool on the Hill" came on. I was thinkin I might make it OK until the part that features a recorder flute thing and Paul or John singing :
"Whoa-Whoa- woa- wo-wo-wo.... Round and Round and Round and..."...
I lost it...
I also remember the song “The Way of the World” on the same album as “Shining Star”. Earth Wind and Fire, right?
There were 2 sisters in High School (just sisters, not soul sisters) that had a little dance they and their friends would do to those two songs, kind of a cross between the Bump, the Hustle, and the Electric Slide. It wasn't the same party without Robin and Tammy and their gang there.
I passed by their mothers house last week, and there was a bunch of stuff in the front yard. I had not seen them in 15 years and doubted that she might still live there, when one of the sisters, Tammy came out of the garage.
She intercepts me halfway up the drive.
She says “Sir, we aren’t having a garage sale, we are just clearing out the Garage”.
She doesn’t recognize me yet, so I turn away, pick something up and ask how much they want for it. She repeats that its not a Garage sale. I pick something else up and look at it and say “Ya’ll really don’t have much good stuff here”.
About that time her mother comes out of the Garage and says
"Listen , Sir, this is not a Garage sale”. She is a little irritated.
So I set the item down and look a little more and picked up a really gorgeous vase and said
“I'll give you a dollar for this”.
They looked at me and at each other and another sister,Robin, steps out of the Garage…
"Can you believe this guy" she says to her mother, and the three of them are now standing in a row, hands on hips, wondering who is the idiot with bad hearing.
I have managed to keep my face fairly well turned away from them and I have a ball cap on but now I face them head-on, looking them each in the eye and announce
"This is some real crap you guys are trying to sell".
I can see the wheels spinning on the mothers face and she’s looking real hard at me. Robin and Tammy have not a clue and are looking at each other. I am trying to keep a straight face. Finally moms face lights up and she Yells
“That’s that gol-darn ol' Bulletholes”
and we all just fell out laughing! It was great!


I noticed that Grizbabe has added to her list of “6 weird things’ and that Kissyface strummed up a whopping 13 entries for her stellar list and I had been thinking that I should add to mine. It was completely serendipituous that I found myself tagged by Citizen H. A Kayak-King he is , and an ex-Marine, whose site I had not visited in some time. Had it not been for his gentlemanly willingness and courage to speak up in defense of a lady, I doubt that I would have found the tag, or that the tag would have been offered.

"Share five off the wall, strange, unusual or just little-known facts about yourself.”

I will do this tag in the next few days; it is a slightly different skew on my “6 weird things” that can be viewed by clicking Cuckoo for those of you that just can’t wait... Like Citizen H, I thoroughly enjoyed the introspection that occurs while responding to these topics.
Please consider this a communal tag for those who are so inclined.

Sunday, January 21, 2007


...Its a sure sign you like me."
Of course there are some insults that will get you eaten by Dr. Norman Fell.
There are other insults that can be very hurtful. Most insults are just better left unsaid.

"And if I haven't tried to insult you yet, just be patient."
In my case what this means is "If you give a guy enough rope he will hang himself". I place a high value on being a Gentleman but I have struggled for much of my life with making inappropriate remarks. I have gotten much better over the years, and am always sensitive to what I have said, albeit many times too late.

Underneath my Title I have quoted a sign that my Father had in his office. It was handmade, in Caligraphy that he had done himself. As far as I know, he was the Author. My Father, as far as I know, never had the problems I have had with unseemly comments.
I like the Quote, and while they are not words to live by, there is a fair amount of truth in them.
They serve as my disclaimer, and my apology in advance.


I have found a Chicken that has her own Blog. This is big you know...I think there are some new blogging concerns and new and secret technology that may be being tested... there may be a conspiracy ( everything is, you know) involving the Chic-Filet folks...I do not know the eggzact was a monkey that went into Space first... but as far as I know there are no other Chickens currently Blogging.

Where are you Fox Mulder?

May I introduce to you... Mother Hen!!!
Perhaps somewhere on the Web there is a kind little Spider.

Friday, January 19, 2007


I keep getting sucked into watching the show that comes on after the evening news. It is called Entertainment Tonight. I do not like this show. So, why do I watch it? Is it the great Movie Reviews that suck me in? Is it the fascinating stories about H-H-Hollywood? Is it because I just can't get enough information about "Greys Anatomy" and the "Housewives" on "Nightline"?
No its none of that.
It is that lady that looks like she is eating an ear of corn as she talks. I have been trying to figure out if there is something wrong with her mouth or if there is a Scientific explanation...
I think maybe the problem is that her lips are sticking to her gums...
Otherwise, she is very pretty and hasn't seemed to age in years.

I found myself making a rude comment yesterday and this is rude as well so maybe now I have it all out of my system for a while. If you are going to joke someone besides yourself, it had better be pretty funny. Oftentimes , I come up short.

I also find myself getting way pissed off at the News people and the Weatherman in particular. He drives me bananas, but I would not miss him for all the world. I even bypass looking at all the fine Lady Weathermen just to hear this Winchell give his dipshit, overmedicated report, while I grumble all the way through it. I'm not even that interested in his report. after 50 years of living, I can look out the window and tell you what its like and generally how its gonna be for the next several days... all us Eagle Scouts can do that.
My grandfather did this while we watched Big Time Wrestling in the 60's. The announcer would say 'Haystacks has got 'im on the ropes" and Grampa would say "No he doesn't" and the announcer would say "Valentine has slammed Wahoo's head into the turnbuckle" and Grampa would say "You don't mean it". Wahoo was my favorite.
My very perceptive daughter, "Water Baby" points out that this attitude and behavior is a dead giveaway that I am turning into a "Grumpy Old Man". She and I follow 'Greys Anatomy", though it tends to wear me out after about 3 weeks and must take a break...
Truly, I am in the beginning stages. I turn 50 this year, and that may not be "over" but is at least "on" the hill.
David indicates that we all should be watching "24", a show I have avoided so far for no apparent reason other than it seemed a bit "faddish". I did the same thing with "Batman' when I was a kid and REALLY MISSED OUT. On his recommendation I will give "24" a shot.

I would like to thank the very astute, (not to be confused with "hirstute" which she is definitely not) annelisa for her detailed instructions on how to do a link. She is very pretty from the inside to the out as well, and writes great poetry. I can see myself becoming a linking monster.

Tuesday, January 16, 2007


Stephen King says that our souls are light years ahead of our minds. I think this is what I was trying to say about Glesnal, my parents, and racism yesterday. They knew down deep what was right and what was wrong, but our brains operate on software that lags behind.

Recently I am struck by the dichotomy of “tolerance/intolerance”. What is the world to do about these words? We have the whole right/left thing; we got Muslims and Christians and Jews; Pro life and Pro Choice; AFC vs. NFC and Sprint vs,. AT&T. Everybody seems lined up for the game of the Millennium; I have my son, 16, that wants to do everything that I did in my youth. Where do I draw the line and what should I tolerate?

Sidney Portier stars in three of my favorite movies from the Sixties. There is "To Sir with Love" and "Lillies of the Field" which has a great gospel song that my friends and I used to sing as we came home from school and I would love to see again. I had the recent pleasure of seeing 'A Patch of Blue " again.
In the Movie, Portier befriends a blind white girl in the park. They become fast friends, and he is the only soul in the Movie that shows her any kindness. Portier talks to her and teaches her and helps her to string her beads that she sells, and generally becomes the best, and possibly only friend she has ever had. Her mother, played by Shelley Winters, is abusive. Of course, being blind, she does not know Portier is black.
As she and Portier walk through the park one day, two older white women give them the "hairy eyeball", muttering to themselves with an air of disdain.
The girl is saying that she thinks “friend” must be the best word in the world and asks Portier what his favorite word is.
He glances back to the two old ladies and says “Tolerance”.
The girl asks what it means and he tells her that it means you don’t think badly of those who think differently from yourself.
The girl says “Oh, you must be very tolerant”.
Portier is such a great actor and his next line almost gets lost.
He says “ME? No, I am not tolerant at all” as he glances to the ladies again.

This has been on my mind. Griz, do you remeber this ?
This is better software than what Glesnal had available.
Lets take a closer look at todays software,shall we?

My humorous anecdote for the day;
I was born in Texas and moved to Detroit when I was 6 years old. after my first week in the first Grade, the school Principal called my mother on the phone and asked if there was "Anything that could be done to keep Steve from talking like a little black boy".

Sunday, January 14, 2007


My mother was one of four sisters. Glesnal was the eldest of the four and when I was young she was certainly the one to be given the widest berth. She would go and "cut herself a switch" at the drop of a hat and she would drop it herself. Any hint of misconduct in her presence was dealt with in a fast and firm fashion.
I can scarcely pass by a Crepe Myrtle tree or a Chinaberry without thinking of Glesnal.
It was precisely this quality that endeared Glesnal to me later in life.

When I was 5 or 6 years old I remember visiting Glesnal in Little Rock Arkansas. The year was 1962 or 1963 and tha topic of discussion was "nigras" causing a lot of trouble in Mississippi. The strange thing was that Glesnal, while seeming to be sympathetic to the "nigras" cause, and seemed to maintain that the whites were in the wrong, and had been in the wrong for sometime, was not ready to go cut herself a switch.
This was an attitude I was not accustomed to from her, and over the next ten years I would see this attitude displayed by most of my family and my race. And it would be longer than that before I really heard it defined.

Today we celebrate the birth of a truly great American, Dr. Martin Luther King Jr..
I do believe that any understanding of our country must be based on the fact that we fought a Great Civil War over civil rights, in which 600,000 Americans died, and that that war was still being fought 100 years later when I was just a boy. The case is easily made that it is still being fought. There are switches still to cut.

My parents and Glesnal were "Moderates"; that is to say that they were more concerned with keeping order than with Social change. I was too young to understand that then. But I was old enough to think that somewhere, someone ought to be cuttin' themself a switch.

Dr. king wrote a letter in a Birmingham jail that said this: "I have been gravely disappointed in the White moderate. I have almost reached the conclusion that the Negro's greatest stumbling block in his stride toward freedom is not the White Citizens Council, or the Ku Klux klan, but the white moderate more devoted to "order" than justice.
I was in Detroit during the 67 & 68 riots; it was the first time I can recall hearing my parents say things that disturbed me... down deep. I guess they were scared. Dad Came home one day in August and said we were going back to Texas. We stopped in Chicago and I watched hippies turning cars over outside the Democratic National Convention.
They had cut themselves some switches.

As the years went by I saw more and more people who were willing to lay it down for a cause.There were some, like at Kent State, that laid it all the way down.
So did Dr. King.
It seems lately however that there are fewer and fewer of these people. We seem to be better informed about the issues; and the comedians these days can make a pretty good joke of the most serious of issues; but what has happened to the lost arts of getting upwind of tear gas and how to assume a fetal position when the billy-clubs come out?
Who wants to go cut themselves a switch?

Anyway, we know that I am better at telling you what happened to me than trying to write an Editorial...
Mainly I just want you to know how much I admired Dr. King and his dream. I used to have a copy of his "Dream" speech set to music... his voice and delivery is so lyrical; if you ever come across it it is worth a listen. Beautiful.
A very good series begins tonight on PBS called "Eyes on the Prize" chronicling the Civil Rights movement.

Friday, January 12, 2007

"We Can't Make it Here"

James McMurtry, from whom I get my Bulletholes , will be on PBS's "Austin City Limits" Saturday, January 13. While I do not consider the following to be one of his best, it seems to have a lot of relevance for some these days, and its as close as I can come, given my limited Computer skills, to providing you a sample of his work.

Stephen King calls him the fiercest protest writer in decades.

"We Can't Make it Here"

Vietnam Vet with a cardboard sign
Sitting there by the left turn line
Flag on the wheelchair flapping in the breeze
One leg missing, both hands free
No one's paying much mind to him
The V.A. budget's stretched so thin
And there's more comin' home from the Mideast war
We can't make it here anymore

That big ol' building was the textile mill
It fed our kids and it paid our bills
But they turned us out and they closed the doors
We can't make it here anymore

See all those pallets piled up on the loading dock
They're just gonna set there till they rot
'Cause there's nothing to ship, nothing to pack
Just busted concrete and rusted tracks
Empty storefronts around the square
There's a needle in the gutter and glass everywhere
You don't come down here 'less you're looking to score
We can't make it here anymore

The bar's still open but man it's slow
The tip jar's light and the register's low
The bartender don't have much to say
The regular crowd gets thinner each day

Some have maxed out all their credit cards
Some are working two jobs and living in cars
Minimum wage won't pay for a roof, won't pay for a drink
If you gotta have proof just try it yourself Mr. CEO
See how far 5.15 an hour will go
Take a part time job at one of your stores
Bet you can't make it here anymore

High school girl with a bourgeois dream
Just like the pictures in the magazine
She found on the floor of the laundromat
A woman with kids can forget all that
If she comes up pregnant what'll she do
Forget the career, forget about school
Can she live on faith? live on hope?
High on Jesus or hooked on dope
When it's way too late to just say no
You can't make it here anymore

Now I'm stocking shirts in the Wal-Mart store
Just like the ones we made before
'Cept this one came from Singapore
I guess we can't make it here anymore

Should I hate a people for the shade of their skin
Or the shape of their eyes or the shape I'm in
Should I hate 'em for having our jobs today
No I hate the men sent the jobs away
I can see them all now, they haunt my dreams
All lily white and squeaky clean
They've never known want, they'll never know need
Their sh@# don't stink and their kids won't bleed
Their kids won't bleed in the da$% little war
And we can't make it here anymore

Will work for food
Will die for oil
Will kill for power and to us the spoils
The billionaires get to pay less tax
The working poor get to fall through the cracks
Let 'em eat jellybeans let 'em eat cake
Let 'em eat sh$%, whatever it takes
They can join the Air Force, or join the Corps
If they can't make it here anymore

And that's how it is
That's what we got
If the president wants to admit it or not
You can read it in the paper
Read it on the wall
Hear it on the wind
If you're listening at all
Get out of that limo
Look us in the eye
Call us on the cell phone
Tell us all why

In Dayton, Ohio
Or Portland, Maine
Or a cotton gin out on the great high plains
That's done closed down along with the school
And the hospital and the swimming pool
Dust devils dance in the noonday heat
There's rats in the alley
And trash in the street
Gang graffiti on a boxcar door
We can't make it here anymore

Music and lyrics © 2004 by James McMurtry

Thursday, January 11, 2007


Do we meet those we dream of as they dream of us?

I should give homage to "Angel" and the "Grizzbabe" for this....

From a previous post titled “FOR MOM”:

"In the second grade we were allowed to walk home from school for lunch. Its hard to believe they let us do that. I don't think that can happen these days.
I always walked with Donna Hartlieb. We would part at the corner and meet again to return to school. Every day my mother gave me a Baby Snickers Bar for the walk back and I would split it with Donna on the corner.
One day I asked Mom if I might have two candy bars.
She inquired as to why I would need two. I told her all about Donna and how we walked together everyday, and how I split my candy bar with her always.
I'll never forget the look on Mom's face.
"Oh yes, Stevie, you certainly may!"as she dried her hands on her Watermelon Apron and pulled another Snickers Bar from out of the cupboard.
She was beaming.

I was in Detroit in 2nd grade, and we moved back to Texas in the 6th grade.
over the next several years, passing from a kid to a teenager, with all the hormonal turmoil and finding love, and loss, and pleasures and pains, and learning to kiss and touch and stuff, I would keep Donna in mind, and try to maintain some semblance of being a gentleman.
Years later, when I was 21, a failed romance jogged my memory of Donna and brought fresh revelations of what it meant to be in love.
I wondered did or would Donna remember me, and what her memory of me might be, and how that memory might affect her relationships the way she affected mine.

This was on my mind very late one night, and I decided to drive to Detroit to see if I could find Donna. It was about 3:00 a.m. as best as I can figure when I left Texas. I was wearing shorts and a T-Shirt and had no shoes.
Somewhere around Cleveland my car broke down. I had to walk the rest of the way. It had become quite cold and the wind was blowing very hard as I entered the Detroit city limits. I made my way north, up Jefferson Ave. to Grosse Pointe Park. People were looking at me, staring at me as I had few clothes, and like I said it was quite cold...
I walked down Windmill Drive and up Trombley, past my old house, and took a left on Essex... there were kids on bikes going to School. They all did a double take when they saw me, tossing their heads back in laughter at this fellow in Shorts and a T-Shirt and no shoes.
What an Idiot!!!
I was at the corner of Essex and Harcourt, the very corner Donna and I would part and reunite, when I saw her.
She was on a Red Schwinn, with the big Chopper handlebars and Banana seat and with the pink and white streamers that flapped in the wind. She still had the Blonde hair cut, "Pixie" style, and the Little Red Riding Hood jacket, but like me, she was older now.
It was Donna, and she had seen me.
She did a quick U-Turn and approached me, her face full of recognition.
I could tell she knew who I was.
My heart is beating wildly.
“What are you doing here? Aren't you cold?” she asks.
‘Yes, but I wanted to see you” I say.
“Do you know me?” she asks.
“You are Donna”
“Yes, how did you know?
“I used to live here, I used to walk with you”
Her face is even more full of recognition now and I am so full of emotion I can scarcely even say the words, cannot find the voice to ask that which I have come 1100 miles to here it is...

‘Donna, do you remember me like I remember you?”

I see it in her face, in her eyes, all she has to do is say the words...her lips begin to form the words to say “Yes, you are Steve, and I remember you so well, we walked and talked and you shared your Candy Bars with me..”
But before she is able to say these words...


And I was shaking, saying "OH MY GOD" and shivering, and I was cold and the next three days I was feverish with the Flu...
If I have ever had a Dream where I went somewhere and met someone... that was it.

Do we really meet those we dream of as they dream of us?

Tuesday, January 09, 2007


I don’t know if I have have expressed to you previously how enjoyable it is to take a Bicycle to work. It seems I have made a few friends between home and work but it is the people that you are able to get only a glimpse of that can be the most interesting.

I have started to watch my diet and have been doughnut free for a week now. Its not just the doughnuts I shall miss.

At the local Doughnut shop there are 10 men (seniors) who are there 4-5 days a week. And 1 sweet little lady that comes in 3-4 days a week. The men Jockey for a position at the table of the lady, they call her Dootsie.
Dootsie waits on them and they fall all over each other, torn between playing hard to get and trying to be Sir Gallahad.

On a morning several weeks ago, one of the men had to leave and excused himself from Dootsies table.
At the other table there were 4 men who had not been in time to sit with Dootsie. While they looked at each other to see who would jump up to take the departed’s place, Dootsie VERY demurely asks:
“Well, isn’t one of ya’ll gonna come sit with me?”
I had to grin, and one of the men gets up and says real gruffly:
“I been tryin’ to all morning” and feighning a certain amount of indifference, goes and takes his place next to Dootsie.
Its just so cute!
So last week I notice that Dootsie has not been around and the group of men is beginning to shrink.
So I finally have to ask;
“Where is ya’lls girlfriend?”
It’s the first time I have ever spoken to them, but we have always used the manly and polite “nod” as a greeting. My question raises a chuckle, and one of the men replies:
“Aw, She is with Jim this morning”.
So I say “Have you guys been ditched altogether or is it Jims turn today?”
Another chuckle and one of the men, without even looking up from his paper says in a matter-of-fact voice:
“It won’t last”.
Too funny.
A few days later I go to a different Doughnut shop. Guess who is there?
Yup, Dootsie and Jim.
I pretend not to see them but they have spotted me, and shrink somewhat into their booth.

The next morning I go to the regular shop. The group is down to five men. I tell them I have seen Dootsie and Jim at the Shop around the corner.
They exchange knowing grins.
“Yes, we know allllll about it “ one tells me.
The one with the paper never looks up.
“It won’t last” he mutters.

Tommorrow I’ll have to tell you about the 70 year old “Biker” chicks...

Monday, January 08, 2007


Apparently everyone missed my meager contibution to the World of Poetry. Vanity is the only thing that prevents me from refusing this explanation and revelation. My poem , appearing briefly in paragraph 6, while it lacks much at present, is yet unfinished.
It likely will remain so.

"Sometimes a poem can have a deep and precise meaning
A lesson, a gleaning,
advice to keep in mind.
Some verses merely flirt with reason
Skirting,singing, measured by
No meter, no time,
Nor words that rhyme"

Once again I have outwitted the competition. If I have to explain, you wouldn't understand.
I did write a Poem for Lily when I first met her and put the Dr. Peppers in her truck.l My friend Alana advised me against revealing this work to Lily, http://http:/
but I will share it with ya'll now:

There once was a Nanny named Lily
Who thawed a heart long frosty and chilly
Items left in her Ranger
Posed no threat, just the danger
That Steve, in the end, looks mighty silly.

In the "Perils of Pauline" you'll remember
She was cooler than a Dixie December
But Dr. Pepper did not care
"Cause Lily, unaware,
Made his heart beat in Iambic Pentameter.

Lily's middle name is Pauline and she is still a nanny.

I have been working on my "Links" ... After putting up David at "Conclusions on the Wall", the "h2 Sidebar area of the Edit template" page I had been using, flat out disappeared!
Until it comes back from wherever it is, or someone can explain this apparent abduction, I won't be getting any of you deserving folks (you know who you are anyway) onto my links list.

Thursday, January 04, 2007


MY DAUGHTER, Aubree’, wrote this and it appears in the 2006 American Library of Poetry, titled “Excellence”, a yearly publication of young writers works starting in the Third Grade.

Rath Roiben Raye

With your hair of Silver and eyes of Gray
Daunt me not and woo me sweetly
For though you be my foe, I love you discreetly
Of different Clans we are destined to be
But into your eyes I wish to see
The flesh of the fruit, so juicy and red
Would be as my heart as it over you bled
The war of our people, o’er freedom and life
Causes great devastation, causes much strife
An arrow of thorns that is lodged in your heart
Is all that prevents us from being apart

Aubree' loves language so much that she is making Irish and Celt her Senior Project. Part of the project, as I understand it, is to speak the Language in a Fundamental way, key words and phrases, as well as having an understanding of its history and roots.
There is a lot of genius and history [ see that goes into writing good verse...I like Yeats a lot, though he is really too smart for me. Walt Whitman too.
I am not sure that there is anything that affects me the way that Edgar Allen Poe’s work “The Raven” does. Especially when read by someone like Garrison Keillor.

I found this as well in “Excellence, written by a Ninth Grader.

Crows and Ravens
By Angelina Waller

Crows clothing in a willow tree
Black feathers flow like silk in the breeze
A song of betrayal they sing
Either resting or flying
Ravens come, on the wing
Harkening sorrow as they sing
Now they blanket a walnut tree
A black sheet of misery
Crows and ravens of depression
Willows and walnuts of sadness
Now comes the rain, weeping for all

“Now they blanket a walnut tree
A black sheet of misery”
That’s nice. The former clothing is now blankets and sheets.
And theres some good form where she opens with a willow tree in line 1 and finishes with “weeping” in the last line.

Sometimes a poem can have a deep and precise meaning
A lesson, a gleaning, advice to keep in mind.
Some verses merely flirt with reason,
Skirting,singing, measured by
No meter, no time,
Nor words that rhyme

My Dad enjoyed poetry too. He wrote one that went:

Haley was a Chemist
Haley is no more
What he thought was H`2O
Was H`2SO`4

Wednesday, January 03, 2007


Whats next?
I've got a New years first one ever...precipitated by a gift I received from my sister...a $150 Shirt.
I don't smoke anymore and I have been working a desk job for two years. I eat like a Farm Hand. I have gained about 40 pounds.
I have reached the height weight and shape that causes even the most perfectly cut material to wear like a Feedbag.
I see these commercials that say "check with your Doctor to make sure you are healthy enough for Sex". They can keep their little pills... but I need to lose some weight...its right there in the Scout Oath...

Mother of Invention had a Poem a few weeks back with a Teeter-Totter and I know one with a Teeter -Tottter as well...


Dark laughter on the teeter-totter,
an old song floats across the water,
I know I should pack up and move on.
One-note Johnnies proliferate,
the wind rises, the hour is late
here in the going going gone.

My heart ain't mine, my heart is yours -
or else I left it out-of-doors
like a baseball glove out on the lawn.
I'd walk through fire to retrieve it,
but still you never would believe it
here in the going going gone.

Everywhere you look you see
more of you and more of me
scrambling for the goods, the lines are drawn.
peace and quiet - is there any?
We are the beautiful too many -
here in the going going gone.

Modern Love's loaded gun.
I live alone and love everyone
and I feel pretty good. Is that so wrong?
Passion called and I would blow it.
Now I'm an old Chinese poet
here in the going going gone.

Porch full of winter squash and pumpkin,
Summer's always really somethin',
but one day fall arrives with a chilly dawn.
While lovers make love in warm beds,
the forsaken sit and scratch their heads
here in the going going gone.

The rain keeps falling on the flood.
The flower closes to a bud.
All my gifts you say are just a con.
But I'll always want to be your friend.
That is my prayer until Amen -
here in the going going gone.

This is the "Sister" song to one I posted in the comment box a while back.
It is by Greg Brown from the Album "The Poet Game". I referenced this Album on my post Titled "November" and recommend it highly. We will see more of Mr. Brown here, I am sure!