Welcome New Readers

12 Oct

Those of you who have followed this blog for years know why it began and how it has changed. It has come to my attention that someone has taken screenshots of some posts and are attempting to make this blog look degrading to women. When I heard that, I set the blog to private and showed it to women who I know and respect. It is now reopened, and I would like to explain some things to people who have found this blog through the screenshots.

This blog began as a sarcastic view of the world. Admittedly, that sarcasm was not always funny, but the attempts at it continued periodically. However, it changed into a blog about my favorite things: history, movies, music, travel and pop culture. I invite everyone who has just found this blog to read through it. You may find something that you think is interesting.

You may, in fact, find some details about my historian background. As a graduate student, I studied the American West. However, that is too big of a topic for a thesis. I was interested in the industries of the west, such as cattle, mining or lumber. My professor guided my research to another industry – prostitution. So, if you see posts about prostitution you should know that I study that subject as part of my job. Of course, there are times when that subject brings strange search terms to my blog. I have tried to write about those search terms in a humorous manner. Apparently, I did not write humorously enough.

Those of you who have followed this blog for a while may be wondering why someone would take screenshots and post them on social media. I am running for mayor of our city.

For those who live in the city, this is the blog I started a decade ago. It is more than a collection of screenshots. If you have questions, I will be happy to answer. You can leave a comment here; Facebook messenger; or give me a call. I would appreciate your vote.

Our Big Sky Adventure

28 Jul

We just returned from a trip to the Big Sky Country where we made our way through South Dakota, Wyoming, Idaho and Utah. There was beautiful landscapes and a variety of wild animals everywhere we went.

We saw Bandlands National Park and the carvings – both Rushmore and Crazy Horse – of the Black Hills.

We rode up to Devils Tower but did not see any alien spacecraft landing.

We visited the Buffalo Bill Center of the West in Cody, Wyoming.

We made our way through Yellowstone National Park, where we stayed at the Old Faithful Inn. We saw geysers, bison, elk, a wolf and massive waterfalls. However, the best part was watching Old Faithful erupt and the sun rose over the horizon. It was just Necole and I watching a sight that usually attracts thousands.

We rafted the whitewater of the Snake River in Jackson Hole, Wyoming. Along the way, we saw otter playing in the water and a bald eagle perched on the limb of a dead tree.

We glamped on the shores on Bear Lake, a natural lake that covered 109 square miles and straddles the border of Idaho and Utah. We floated the waters and took in the blueness that makes Bear Lake the Caribbean of the Rockies.

We drove the length of Wyoming on the return to Rapid City, South Dakota. On the route, we crossed the Oregon Trail and the Bozeman Trail. We passed by Teapot Dome, the namesake of a massive presidential scandal. We went through Johnson County, the location of a range war that made its way into the pages of history.

It was a lengthy trip, and a detailed account would take up post after post. Instead, I have decided to portray our excursion with my favorite photograph from each day. Be warned that they are mostly landscapes. I have been told that I am better at capturing landscapes than I am at capturing people.

Day 1 – Mount Rushmore

Day 2 – Devils Tower

Day 3 – Buffalo Bill Center of the West

Day 4 – Yellowstone Falls

Day 5 – Snake River

Day 6 -Conestoga Ranch

Day 7 – Bear Lake

Day 8 – Plains of Johnson County

It was a great trip that created a lot of fantastic memories. One of these days, we will make it back to Big Sky Country.

What is the Point?

27 Jun

In the last post, I wrote about going to AmericasMart with my wife. That is where she buys clothing for her boutique. It is truly an art to choose what people will want to buy in the future, and I am always amazed at how she does it.

I am also amazed by the words that I hear over and over.




Price Point!

Price Point? Yes, Price Point.

I know that does not fit with Gorgeous, Beautiful and Perfect, but it is an integral part of the language at Fashion Market. I just do not understand why they say it when it can be said in a much simpler way.

How about saying Price?

That gets to the point.


That Logan’s Run Feeling

18 Jun

My wife owns a boutique, which means she has attend market a few times a year. This is where she buys clothes for the upcoming season. Luckily, this takes place an easy drive away in Atlanta. Most times, she takes someone who works at the boutique or a friend who knows something about fashion. When she gets desperate, I am the choice to tag along.

The market is held at AmericasMart, a huge complex that holds may different events. I have been several times, and the building always amazes me. There are a ton of stories, and people are everywhere.

However, there is one feeling that I got the first time I walked in, and I have gotten the same feeling each time.

When I am in AmericasMart, I feel that I have been dropped into Logan’s Run, the 1976 dystopian movie where everyone lives in a dome and are killed when they turn 30 years old. A long time ago, I wrote a blog post about the movie and will not recount it here. Those of you who have seen the movie know what it is about. It is just freaky feeling that I get when I am there.

The architecture is just like the movie.

The constant murmur of voices echoing through the chamber is the same as in the movie. The building is a confined space that is huge, and that is exactly the way the film is portrayed.

I have always given this feeling some thought, but, this time, I realized something. One night, I was going through the rabbit hole that is the Internet Movie Database and looked up where Logan’s Run was filmed. It was at the Dallas Market Center. (This is also where John F. Kennedy’s motorcade was going when it passed the Dallas Book Depository.)

Wait, it was filmed at a market center, and I feel like I am in Logan’s Run when I go to a market center. Could there be a connection? It turns out that both of them were built in 1957 and look just alike. Those Logan’s Run feelings come from the fact that I have seen that movie too many times, and I was essentially walking onto the set. If you have seen Logan’s Run, then you have essentially seen where boutique owners from across the nation go to buy next year’s fashions.

Luckily for us, next year does not involve a hand crystal turning black and a trip to Carrousel.

The Last Walk to the Hay Bale

3 Jun

It is hay-cutting time in these parts, and bales have been scattered behind our house. The other evening, Daisy and I took a walk to one of the bales, and I took this picture.

It was posted on social media, and a lot of people liked it. However, my wife was not happy. She said that Daisy should not be that far from our house because a coyote might get her. We have seen a few of them around here, and we have to be diligent when Daisy is outside. Honestly, I did not think about that when Daisy and I walked to the hay bale. It was daylight, and I was with her.

Later that night, I took Daisy out before bed. A siren could be heard going down the nearby highway. As the siren faded away, we heard the howls of coyotes not far away. The siren had stirred them up. When I say that we heard them, I really mean it. Daisy looked at me and did her business as fast as she could. Like a flash, she was up the steps and at the door.

In other words, we will no longer be walking to hay bales.

Whatever Happened To Klinton Spilsbury?

28 May

Last night, I was flipping through the channels and came across The Legend of the Lone Ranger, the 1981 reboot of the classic character. At the time, it seemed to have a lot going for it. Jason Robards starred as President Ulysses S. Grant. Christopher Lloyd played the bad guy. Matt Clark was the corrupt sheriff. Merle Haggard sang the theme song and narrated the film. Richard Farnsworth showed up as Wild Bill Hickok. Heck, the entire thing was based on a famous character that many people loved.

However, there was a problem. John Reid and his alter ego the Lone Ranger was played by an unknown actor named Klinton Spilsbury, and it did not work out well.

Through the years, I have heard the story that his lines were later dubbed by James Keach. I have also heard that this was Spilsbury’s first and last starring role in a movie. There are not many times that one role destroys an entire career.

The Legend of the Lone Ranger has gone down as one of the biggest disasters in movie history, and a lot of that has been placed at the feet of Spilsbury. However, I have never considered it to be that bad. Yes, it is corny, and the plot is a little strange. But, that can be said about a lot of movies. Could it have been better? No doubt. I am just not sure that the Man in the Mask should have taken all of the blame.

Despite all of that, this post is not about the movie. It is about Klinton Spilsbury. What happens to someone when their entire career is derailed by one movie? As it turns out, nobody really knows. Through Google, I found out that he went to Europe to be a model and later tried to restart his acting career. When Johnny Depp made another Lone Ranger disaster in 2013, media members found Spilsbury, but he refused to talk to them. I cannot blame him for that.

Klinton Spilsbury was a first-time actor working for a first-time director. On top of that, the studio sued Clayton Moore, the most famous Lone Ranger, for continuing to appear as the character. In short, this movie had a ton of problems.

Klinton Spilsbury disappeared from the public eye. Wherever he is, I wonder if he has put the Lone Ranger behind him. Who is that Masked Man? Well, the answer is complicated.

The Place That I Find Strange

20 Apr

There is a place that I find strange.

It is a place like the edge of the frontier. It is a place that is safe but is only a few steps from the dangers of nature.

It is limbo. It is a place between dimensions where a person is neither inside or outside.

It is a portal. It is a place where a person can climb into the machine and speed to parts unknown.

It is a treasure box. It is a place where we keep some of our most valuable possession. It is a place where those possession can be easily found.

It is memory. It is a place where memories are kept along with things that will never be remembered.

It is a place with a thin shield between the fullness of the light and the emptiness of the dark. It is a place with a thin shield that keeps the cold away and the warmth within. It is a place to be near the elements but out of the elements. It is a place that keeps creatures at bay.

It is a place that is clean yet is unclean. It is a place of comfort yet is uncomfortable.

It is the garage.

The Rocket Scientist Next Door

18 Apr

A couple of years ago, I published this post about Charlie Bradshaw, one of our neighbors who was a Mathematician in the NASA Apollo program. This week, Charlie passed away. He was a great man who lived an interesting life.

SBI: A Thinning Crowd

A few weeks ago, I interviewed Charlie Bradshaw, a man who lives down the street. This is what I wrote about him.

Charlie Bradshaw walked into his professor’s office without knowing what to expect. He had enlisted in the Navy and entered the V-12 program for training, which was why he was taking Calculus at Sewanee and was facing the uncertainty of this meeting.

The professor began by going over the details of Charlie’s C average but quickly put his grade book aside. This was not a meeting of condemnation. Rather, it was a meeting of encouragement. He saw Charlie’s talent and encouraged him to think about Mathematics as a career. About this meeting, Charlie said, “I didn’t know how important it was to concentrate on what you’re good at.” With that, a lifelong love of Mathematics began.

Charlie finished the V-12 program and was shipped to the Pacific Theater…

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The Dog With No Name

9 Apr

She came from the East. Daisy Dog was the first to see her. There was a standoff until the Dog With No Name retreated into the darkness.

The night can be dangerous with bandits, highwaymen and coyotes prowling in the night. We decided to search for the Dog With No Name. We searched the trails. We searched the hills. We searched the neighboring homestead.

She was sitting in the shadows watching us closely. Only the moonlight gave away location of the Dog With No Name. Unsure of these strangers, she slowly approached. We offered her a drink and a warm place to bed down.

At first, the Dog With No Name was cautious in her new surroundings. She and Daisy Dog eyed each other but finally came to an uneasy truce. After a long time on the trail, she had a roof over her head; food in her belly; and a warm bath.

It has been almost a week, and we are still searching. We are searching for her home. We are searching for a future home. We do not know when the uneasy truce will come to an end and a gunfight will commence.

Until we find her past or her future, she remains the Dog With No Name.

Movie Wisdom – Jan-Michael Vincent Edition

9 Mar

Several years ago, I wrote this post about Jan-Michael Vincent. With his passing, I decided to repost it.

SBI: A Thinning Crowd

In the 1970s, he was on the cusp of movie stardom. He costarred alongside John Wayne, one of the most popular movie stars of all time. He also costarred alongside Burt Reynolds, one of the most popular movie stars of the time. He was in Damnation Alley, one of my favorite dystopian movies. In the 1980s, he had his own series and was reported to be the highest paid person on television. However, I have been wondering whatever happened to Jan-Michael Vincent.Jan Michael Vincent

Somewhere, his career went sideways and into the B-Movie realm. According to Wikipedia, he has had serious health issues and lives near Vicksburg, Mississippi. To remember Vincent’s career, we will look at the wisdom to be gained from a few of his films.

From The Undefeated

If I can’t have the whole dog, I don’t want the tail!

From Bite the Bullet

To be a cowpuncher…

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