Tag Archives: Traffic

Whatever Happened to Helicopter-Flying Traffic Reporters?

9 Nov

I was driving around with my phone giving me directions. It had me on one route but made the announcement that I needed to take another route. Apparently, there was traffic up ahead that needed to be avoided. As I made my way through the twist and turns of getting somewhere, a question came to my mind.

Whatever happened to traffic reporters?

I am not talking about the people who show us some screen filled with red lines. I am talking about the people who flew around in helicopters and scouted the different arteries into the city. They would get on the radio and try to talk above the sound of the rotary blades. In the background, you could hear the thump, thump, thump of those blades. It was like they were on an episode of M*A*S*H.

Through the thumping, drivers had to listen for their interstate number and hope that it never came up.

Whatever happened to those guys?

I think they went away when our phones became our own personal traffic reporters. Now, the voice in our phone tells us where to go. It tells us about the accident up ahead. It tells us the quickest way to our destination. No more guessing. No more listening for our interstate number.

The phone has put helicopter-flying traffic reporters out of work.

Those are the thoughts that went through my mind as my phone told me where to drive. Then, another thought went through my mind about perhaps the most famous traffic reporter of all time. Although, he was not famous for being a traffic reporter.

Gary Powers was a big part of the Cold War. As a U-2 pilot flying, he was on a secret spying mission over the Soviet Union when he was shot down. It was a huge issue for the United States when the spy missions were discovered. Eventually, Powers was exchanged for a Soviet spy held by the United States. That story was covered in the movie Bridge of Spies.

In 1977, he was working as a traffic reporter in Los Angeles. While returning to the airport, his helicopter ran out of fuel and crashed. According to the investigation, Powers deviated during the descent to miss a playground full of children. That move made the crash more devastating, and he was killed.

I hate to end a post on such a depressing note, but those are the thoughts that went through my mind as my phone directed my through traffic.

My iPod Has Issues – Brain Drain

25 Jun

There are a lot of things going through my mind that I could write about. My opinion on the Confederate flag. Some issues in local politics. The events of everyday life. Heck, I could even give out the Yard Dog Award. However, I am not going to write about any of those things.

I am tired. My brain is tired.Brain

At the moment, the energy does not exist to create a post of any depth. As has been done before, I will take this opportunity to take the easy way out and let my iPod do all of the work.

It is now time to put it on shuffle and listen to what comes out.

“I Sang Dixie” by Dwight Yoakam

“Flash Light” by Parliament

“Broken Arrow” by Robbie Robertson

“She Shot A Hole In My Soul” by Clifford Curry

“Arranca” by Manzanita

“Sweet and Slow” by Carol Sloane

“He Went To Paris” by Jimmy Buffett

“Just Dropped In (To See What Condition My Condition Was In)” by Kenny Rogers and The First Edition

“Tiger Man” by Elvis Presley

“Texas” by Chris Rea

“Country Boy (You Got Your Feet In L.A.)” by Glen Campbell

“Dear Mr. Fantasy” by Traffic

“Safe From Harm” by Massive Attack

“Civil War” by Guns N’ Roses

“Comin’ Home” by Lynyrd Skynyrd

“Sweet Baby James” by James Taylor

“Hurt” by Johnny Cash

“I’ve Been Loving You Too Long” by Otis Redding

“Lotta Love” by Nicolette Larson

“Sweet Tennessee” by Judah and the Lion

Man, that wore my iPod out. I think we both need a good night’s sleep.

 

My iPod Has Issues – Family Night

30 Apr

I am sitting at the kitchen counter and seeing what is going on in the WordPress world. My wife is sitting in the chair and scrolling through her Facebook feed. My stepdaughter is in her room listening to music. We are all trying to recover from our big meal at one of the local Mexican restaurants.Los

This means that it is a good time to explore the strange world of my iPod. I am going to put in on shuffle and see what happens.

“I Love” by Tom T. Hall

“Forcemarker” by Brian Eno

“Making Love Out of Nothing at All” by Air Supply

“Dear Mr. Fantasy” by Traffic

“Hells Bells” by AC/DC

“Pinball Cha Cha” by Yello

“Blue Collar Suicide” by The Refreshments

“Bluer Than Blue” by Michael Johnson

“4th of July, Asbury Park (Sandy)” by The Hollies

“Thriller” by Michael Jackson

“Pusherman” by Curtis Mayfield

“Spoonful” by Howlin’ Wolf

“Rainy Night in Georgia” by Brook Benton

“I Can’t Hear the Whisper” by John Jarvis and Jonell Mosser

“Why Do Fools Fall in Love” by Frankie Lymon and the Teenagers

“Should I Stay or Should I Go” by The Clash

“Tennessee Whiskey” by David Allan Coe

“Puttin’ On the Ritz” by TACO

“D-I-V-O-R-C-E” by Tammy Wynette

“Let’s Trade a Little” by Audrey Bryant

There you have it – the family night playlist.

My iPod Has Issues: Five Dollar Words

14 Jan

Last week, we had faculty meetings in preparation of the upcoming semester. As people talked and presentations were made, I realized something. We academicians use a lot of five dollar words.Five

I mean words like:

Pedagogy

Colloquium

Convocation

Socratic

Syllabus

Magna Cum Laude

Rubric

Vitae

You have to admit that those are not words used in everyday language.

Then, I wondered why we use five dollar words. Is it to show everyone how smart we are? Is is to prove that our profession is important? Is it to separate ourselves intellectually?

As those ideas raced through my mind, I realized that most professions have their own languages. We my family was involved in manufacturing, we used terms that many people would not recognize and not be able to define.

I reckon that is the way it is for the world’s numerous professions. They all have their own languages that set them apart from those who are not involved in that line of work.

It is strange phenomenon, but I imagine that it started a long time ago.

To honor the five dollar words of my profession and others, we will explore the selections of my iPod. However, these songs all have something in common. Their titles include words that are worth at least $4.99.

“Christo Redemptor” by Charlie Musselwhite

“Spybreak” by Propellerheads

“Contempt – Theme De Camille” by Georges Delerue

“Suite: Judy Blue Eyes” by Crosby, Stills and Nash

“Nocturne” by Daft Punk

“Also Sprach Zarathustra” by Deodato

“Toccato and Fugue in D Minor” by Johann Sebastian Bach

“A Private Interlude” by Groove Armada

“Balfa Waltz” by David Doucet

“Pyramania” by The Alan Parsons Project

“Dengue Woman Blues” by Jimmie Vaughan

“De Guello” by Nelson Riddle

“John Barleycorn” by Traffic

“Bohemian Rhapsody” by Queen

“Stranglehold” by Ted Nugent

“Gracefully” by Vintage Trouble

“Anarchy in the U.K.” by The Sex Pistols

“Guitar Improvisation” by John Rubinstein and Tim McIntire

“Principles of Lust: Sadeness” by Enigma

“Torquay” by The Leftovers

Now, I have to figure out where I am going to spend the extra penny.

 

My iPod Has Issues – Or Maybe Not

8 Oct

This History of American Music course that I am teaching has me digging deeper into my iPod than I ever have. I knew there was a bunch of stuff in there. Heck, I downloaded it all. However, I did not realize that depths of its knowledge. When I want to play a sample for the class, I find it on my iPod. It makes me realize that the iPod does not have any issues at all. It is simply steeped in music history.iPod

In honor of this newfound respect for the iPod, I have decided to explore its inner workings and see what is there. Besides, I cannot think of anything else to write about.

“Ruby, Don’t Take Your Love to Town” by Kenny Rogers and the First Edition

“Night Train” by Alvino Rey

“Wild World” by Cat Stevens

“America” by Neil Diamond

“Fast Car” by Tracy Chapman

“Luck Be a Lady” by Michael Civisca

“You Really Got Me” by The Kinks

“John Barleycorn” by Traffic

“Changes” by David Bowie

“When I Can Afford to Lose” by Will Hoge

“Save the Last Dance for Me” by The Drifters

“Sweet Tennessee” by Judah and the Lion

“The Road to Hell” by Chris Rea

“High Fever Blues” by Bukka White

“Don’t Cry” by Guns N’ Roses

“My Sweet Lord” by George Harrison

“All the Young Dudes” by Mott the Hoople

“Elevation” by Television

“Still” by The Commodores

“Jack and Diane” by John Mellencamp

Yeah, maybe my iPod is not as crazy as everyone thinks.

 

My iPod Has Issues – Filling the Television Void

16 Jun

Last night, the fourth season of Game of Thrones came to an end. That means I will feel something missing over the next few Sunday nights. It is rare that I get caught up in an episodic television show. Usually, I watch sporting events or documentaries. However, I have been addicted to Game of Thrones since it first began.Game of Thrones

I, along with millions of other people, will have to wait until next year to find out what happens to our favorite characters. I reckon I could read the books to find out, but I hear that the show is deviating from the books. With that in mind, I will skip the written page and stick to the television screen. I may go back and read them once it is all over.

To fill the void, I have decided to explore the meandering mind of my iPod. For those who watch Game of Thrones, you know that a lot of crazy stuff goes on in the land of Westeros. With that in mind, it is fitting to see what crazy stuff is going on in the mind of my insane iPod.

Let us look inside and see what can be found.

“Feeling Alright?” by Traffic

“Blood and Roses” by The Smithereens

“The Ride” by David Allan Coe

“The Distance” by CAKE

“Hollywood Nights” by Bob Seger

“Strokin'” by Stacey Mitchhart

“How Forever Feels” by Kenny Chesney

“White Lightning Ballad” by Carl Bernstein

“Stairway to Heaven” by Heart

“Spill the Wine” by The Animals

“Good Golly Miss Molly” by Little Richard

“Older Women” by Ronnie McDowell

“Daniel” by Elton John

“Venus” by Bananarama

“Stand By Me” by Ben E. King

“The Wreck of the Edmund Fitzgerald” by Gordon Lightfoot

“The Grid” by Daft Punk

“Once Upon a Time in the West” by Ennio Morricone

“Gene Nobles’ Boogie” by Richard Armstrong

“Jackson” by June and Johnny Cash

Pretty crazy, huh?

My iPod Has Issues – Post Thanksgiving Post

29 Nov

I ate way too much, and that means my stomach is way more full than my brain. When my brain isn’t working well, that’s when we take the easy route and explore the mind of my iPod, that bipolar instrument that shoots sounds out of the speakers.Speakers

My iPod is suffering from all of the Thanksgiving festivities, as well. That’s why this issue of “My iPod Has Issues” is dedicated to those songs that have food or drink in their title.

Shuffle up and play!

“Catfish Blues” by Big Jack Johnson

“Jack & Coke” by Lynda Kay

“Margaritaville” by Jimmy Buffett

“Blueberry Hill” by Fats Domino

“Buzzard Pie” by Rudy Green and His Orchestra

“Big Rock Candy Mountain” by Harry McClintock

“Mountain Dew” by Willie Nelson

“Jack Daniels, If You Please” by David Allan Coe

“Old Turkey Buzzard” by Jose Feliciano

“My Mama Made Biscuits” by Jerry Clower

“Sugar Foot Rag” by Merle Haggard

“John Barleycorn” by Traffic

“Drunk Chicken” by U2

“Candyman” by Cornershop

“Strawberry Letter 23” by Brothers Johnson

“Orange Blossom Special” by Benny Martin

“Strawberry Fields Forever” by The Beatles

“T-Bone Shuffle” by T-Bone Walker

“No Sugar Tonight” by The Guess Who

“Green Onions” by Booker T. and the MG’s

That’s it. Now, it’s time for leftovers.