Thursday, April 30, 2009

JSS: No More Pontiac to Kick Around-- Culverts Are My Game-- April Showers Bring....-- Snuggy Parties

JSS-- Just Some Stuff


1. NO MORE PONTIAC TO KICK AROUND-- Really sad to hear that 2010 is the last year for my favorite car company. At one time, all three of our cars were Pontiacs: 1967 Firebird, 1985 Firebird, and two straight Grand Ams.

I guess I can give up waiting for them to bring the Firebird back like they did the Camaro.

Just one more thing "they" are taking away from me.


2. CULVERTS ARE MY GAME-- Last month, I put red interlocking bricks around the west driveway culvert flower bed. Liz said she liked it and that I should put the brick around the east side flower bed. After due consideration, I decided it would look good and yesterday went to Menard's (Where I always SPEND big money) and bought 30 more (95 cents each and buy two, get one free).

I came home and installed them. It looks as good as anticipated. These both should help keep the grass and weeds out of the areas as well. Function and beauty, that's what I like.


3. APRIL SHOWERS BRING....-- We have certainly been getting a LOT of rain of late. Raining AGAIN this morning. Rained Monday and then, of course, the all-day soaking back on the 19th. Bulbs are blooming and trees are really budding.

Sure glad I cut the grass for the first time this year, yesterday.


4. SNUGGY PARTIES-- Many were held around the country Saturday. Have we REALLY come down to that. What next, Smiley Face parties?

Just Some Stuff, You Know. --RoadDog

Wednesday, April 29, 2009

The Litchfield Eleven

I sure could have saved some bucks had the Route 66 meeting been underway Sunday April 19th in Litchfield. I was "forced" to buy those CDs at Wal Mart!! And, the price wasn't bad, either. Just try "downloading" for that cheap!!

$3 CDS

COUNTRY LEGENDS-- with Cash, Williams, Cline, Nelson, Arnold, and 12 others singing the classics.

ERNEST TUBB & FRIENDS-- Cash, Nelson, Jones, Rich, and Clark joining Ernest on classics like "Waltz Across Texas."

MARILYN MONROE-- "I want to be loved by you, just you. Boop Boop de boop." How about "Diamonds Are a Girl's Best Friend," and even "Happy Birthday Mr. President."

BILLY J. KRAMER GOLDEN LEGENDS-- "Bad to Me," "Little Children," and "I'll Keep You Satisfied."


$2.50 CDS and some of the songs on each.

WORKIN' FOR THE WEEKEND-- Rock This Town, Down Under, Rosanna, Danger Zone

BOOTY HITS-- Da Butt, Humpty Dance, Dazzey Dukes, Tootsie Roll

BEST OF HIP HOP-- Thong Song, Gimme the Light, Gangsta's Paradise

GET DOWN 7 BOOGIE DISCO PARTY-- Disco Inferno, Celebration, I'm Your Boogie Man

I WANT YOU BACK 60S R&B-- I Got You, Dancing in the Streets, I Want You Back

SHAKE YOUR GROOVE THING-- Boogie Wonderland, Ladies Night, Boogie Nights


Lastly, "Johnny Horton's Greatest Hits" for $5: North to Alaska, Johnny Reb, When It's Springtime in Alaska, Battle of New Orleans, and Sink the Bismarck, among others.

That's a lot of music for $32 plus tax. That's 152 songs!!

I Should Stay Away from Music Sections!! --RoadDog

589 Miles, Two Cities, and Two Meetings Later-- Part 5

SUNDAY, April 19th

Had an excellent breakfast omelet at Jubelt's, a restaurant dating back to 1922 in Mt. Olive. At one time, there were six places, but now, just this one, located next to the Ariston. The place was crowded with pre-church folk.

Went to Majestic Banquet, but I was too early. Drove over to the Wal Mart and bought six hit collection CDs for $2.50 apiece, four other CDs for $3 each, and a Johnny Horton GH CD for $5. "North to Alaska," you know.

The Route 66 Association of Illinois directors meeting was going on when I got back to the Majestic. Sat across from John Weiss, Mr. Route 66 in Illinois. He and his wife Lenore have authored a guide book for the road, found an old Illinois Highway 4 symbol on a bridge in Poniac, and their names are synonymous with preservation.

Ernie Edwards (The Old Coot on Route 66) and wife Fran were also there. Ernie, 92, a former owner of the popular Pig Hip Restaurant in Broadwell from the 30s to early 90s, tended his resignation as Logan County Director because of age and added, "You don't listen to me anymore," in typical Ernieism.

I went to Jack in the Box with Bob Boromak, owner of Lincoln Printing in Lincoln. We bought back tacos for Ernie and Fran and ate with them.

We then had the regular meeting. Sad to find out that Jim Allen is selling Scotty's in Hamel. Hope the new owners keep the place the same. It's a Route 66 classic.

After the meeting, I picked up ten tacos to go for Liz (about a 200 mile delivery) and had a couple more for myself. Then, had the pleasurable experience of driving the whole way back in the rain.

Good to be Home, But Wait, Out on the Road Again the Next Weekend. --RoadDog

Tuesday, April 28, 2009

Five Days on the Road

I got back last night after another drive in the enjoyable rain, from the Indiana/Illinois line to Joliet and from Elgin to home. It rained the whole trip from Litchfield to home last Sunday, April 19th. I just really LOVES to drive in the rain. Oh, JOY BOUNDLESS!!!

I left home Thursday, April 23rd and took my usual Chicago by-pass, Il-47 to Dwight, Illinois. Then, I drove Il-116 from Saunemin to the state line. In Indiana, I took US-41/US-52 (Yes, that 52 again. We took it earlier in the month from Charleston, SC, to Mount Airy, NC, and then from Huntington, West Virginia to Cincinnati, Ohio.)

I took it to Lafayette and Lebanon, Indiana, and played NTN at a place in each. Then, went to Indianapolis and played at five NTN sites, three of them new. A big one was the 86th Street Pub, which is very often at the top of the top twenty charts.

Spent the night at the Motel 6 and found out the next day that this was in a very dicey area of Speedway. No problems though, and the $36 was a deal.

Friday Coming Up. --RoadDog

Monday, April 27, 2009

A First for NIU

I was at the BW3 (Buffalo Wild Wings) in Lebanon, Ohio, Saturday, playing NTN and watching the NFL draft first round selections, when I thought I caught the name Northern Illinois passing along the bottom of the screen.

Why would my school's name be passing by in conjunction with a name in the first round? That has certainly never happened before. I asked the guy next to me who was writing down the picks if he knew.

He did, and the San Diego Chargers took Larry English with the 17th PICK!!! First, they took Turner "The Burner" a few years ago, now English in the first round.

Congratulations to Larry English!!! Let's hope for a great year.

A Real Plum for NIU. --RoadDog

Thursday, April 23, 2009

On the Road Again

As Willie would say.

I'm leaving today for an American Road Magazine Forum Group trip through Indiana and Ohio. Road Maven and Denny Gibson will be with us and in general leading the procession as they have set it all up. These guys know their road stuff.

I high point for me will be a visit to the grave of Carl Fisher, the father of the Lincoln Highway, Dixie Highway, Indianapolis Speedway, and Miami Beach. Sunday, we will be going to the American Sign Museum in Cincinnati.

There will be all sorts of old places in between, including a drive along the old National Road/US-40 from Indianapolis to Richmond, Indiana.

I'm not taking the laptop so there will probably be not entries until next Tuesday.

Good Times, Good Folks, Lots of Miles. --RoadDog

Wednesday, April 22, 2009

589 Miles, Two Cities, and Two Meetings Later-- Part 4-- Cozy Dogs and Bars

April 18th-- continued

I drove over to Cozy Dogs and got one for myself and one I intended to take home for Liz as well as those great fries. Sue Waldemire, current owner, was working the counter. Called Liz, who said I might as well go to the the Route 66 meeting in Litchfield, Illinois, tomorrow and said she was feeling better. Decided to go and was "forced" to eat that second Cozy.

Rained all the way to Litchfield. Stopped at Art's Motel in Farmersville (another Route 66-era place) but the restaurant appeared to be closed and only one bar open downtown, so went on to Litchfield.

Found Majestic Banquets (the old Masonic Lodge, circa 1900) where the meeting was going to be held tomorrow. Checked into America's Best Value Inn (our usual place to stay in Litchfield and where Liz and her family stayed when they went to Kansas City to visit her mother's family back in the 50s and 60s when it was a Best Western and on the Route 66 bypass).


ONE FOR THE CHAPP

Went to Chapp's and watched some of the Cubs-Cards game. This area is heavily tilted to the red (hey, it's only 50 miles from St. Louis). I'm a Sox fan, but pull for the Cubs any other time than when they play our guys.

Had the house specialty, called a Red Royal. This is a $3 shot with 3/4 Crown Royal and 1/4 amaretto. Good stuff.


SHAW'S

Then went over to Shaw's which has been serving drinks on 66 since the 1920s. Watched the end of the game and CUBS VICTORY. One Cardinal fan had to use a Cubs cozy on his bottle of beer because his team lost. I found it on the floor quite a ways away once when returning from the bathroom. He was not happy to get it back.

The current owner, Rita Shaw, gave me a Shaw's tee shirt when I admired the one she was wearing. Shaw's, a definite stop now. We'd driven by it many times in the past as it doesn't look like much from the outside. But last year, during the June Route 66 Festival, this place became the unofficial gathering place for Route 66 folk. We had such good time that we have now been back twice since then.

Back to the motel and TV.

Coming, the Route 66 Meeting, Jack in the Box, and Rain Drive. --RoadDog

Tuesday, April 21, 2009

JSS: Honey, the Neighbors Are in the Garbage Again-- April showers (and Cold) Bring...-- Ten Tacos to Go-- Drinking on the Cheap, Eating Too

JSS-- Just Some Stuff


1. HONEY, THE NEIGHBORS ARE IN THE GARBAGE AGAIN-- A bit of an embarrassing moment this morning. While taking the garbage out, I noticed one of the neighbors' containers was open where the breeze blew the lid open. Being a good neighbor, I walked across to close it. Inside was a neat wooden bear holding a welcome sign. Way too neat to throw away, so I decided to take it.

Wouldn't you know it, right at that moment, the wife came driving up. CAUGHT!!! I made sure to explain the particulars. She said she didn't really want to throw it out, but was ready for a change and was very happy I'd give it a new home.

At least, that's what she said. Honest, I usually don't go garbage diving.


2. APRIL SHOWERS (AND COLD) BRING...-- Sure been some miserable weather since Sunday, and I HAD to drive the WHOLE way back from Litchfield, about 50 miles northeast of St. Louis, in the rain, and sometimes it was quite heavy. Not a real joy. Any way, rained off and on all day yesterday and a light drizzle for the garbage caper (see above). High yesterday was 50, today 45, but a big warmup on the way, just in time for the roadtrip this weekend.

Lots of bulbs blooming right now.


3. TEN TACOS TO GO-- I made Liz's day, and brought back ten tacos (2 for $1) from the Jack in the Box in Litchfield. This is the closest Jack in the Box to Chicago, and always a must-stop when we're this way (except when we've filled up on the Cozy Dogs in Springfield, about fifty miles away. If you've ever had their tacos, you'll know why.

When I ordered the ten tacos, I told them I was taking then 200 miles. The cashier laughed and said one person comes through every two weeks and has a standing order for 200 to bring back to Chicago. Many others get large orders as well.

I wonder what the delivery charge should be from Litchfield? Hey, Liz!!!


4. DRINKING ON THE CHEAP, EATING TOO-- Yesterday, I played NTN at Pug Mahone's in Fox Lake, Illinois, and enjoyed their $1 pints of Coors Light. On the way home, I stopped at the Lakes American Legion on US-12 and had their 50 cent 10-oz drafts and 50 cent hot dogs. Let it be known, I like cheap beer and food.

Just Some Stuff. --RoadDog

589 Miles, Two Cities, and Two Meetings Later-- Part 3-- Confederates and Records

Saturday, April 18th.

Went to the Sons of Confederate Veterans Illinois Division annual convention in the downtown Springfield Hilton from 9 AM to 3PM. We had the meeting 27 floors up in the air with a great view of downtown Springfield, and especially the Abraham Lincoln Library and Museum, a few blocks away.

We did our division business and reports were given by each camp and officer. We broke for a delicious lunch, then had an interesting presentation by the commander of the Indiana Division on recruitment.

For more on this meeting, see my blog on the Civil War: http://sawtheelephant.blogspot.com.


RECYCLED RECORDS

When the meeting was over, I walked across the street from the Hilton and went to a favorite destination, Recycled Records, to look at their great collection of albums and CDs. Today was also National Record Store Day across the nation, a day to honor the old mom and pop stores as they are rapidly dying out.

I will sure miss them. Nothing is much more fun than flipping through albums and CDs and talking music to the informed and fans.

The place was packed and there was a local radio station playing some obscure stuff and doing a live broadcast (always better to have live than dead broadcasts).

I ended up buying seven CDs, including "Western Union" by the Five Americans and "History" by John Fred & the Playboys. Great songs on both. The other five CDs were Time-Life Country Collections from the 80s.

Next, Heading for Those Cozy Dogs. --RoadDog

Monday, April 20, 2009

589 Miles, Two Cities, and Two meetings Later-- Part 2-- Partying on Route 66

Took I-72 west from Decatur to Springfield and played NTN at the capital City bar and grill on the southeast side. I have a regular NTN-Buzztime Name on the board, Sixtcx (for the road as I wasn't allowed to use Sixtsx, something about sex).

I was sorry that I had just missed buddy JJ, but had a great talk with a new player named Wes who is at the UI-Springfield library. JJ is security at the Abraham Lincoln Library.

I had that great all-you-can eat walleye special for $5.99. Now, that is good eating.

Drove over to the Travelodge and got a room. This motel is on an alignment of Route 66. I then drove the short distance to the Curve In, so-named for the curve Route 66 made leaving Springfield back when the place opened in the 1930s. This is a REAL Route 66 Roadhouse. Always a good time and food there. They'd already started their Friday outside parties with live entertainment. Bud products were $2 today.

Then went back to the Travelodge for a nightcap or two at the in-house bar, the South Side Pub. Had a great talk with a truck driver who stays there two nights a week and really enjoys the pool during the summer. Another guy was staying there and in town for his daughter's wedding. Very eclectic juke box and especially enjoyed the late-great Dan Seals' song, Bob," one of the great songs ever made.

Good Times Friday NTNing and 66in'. --RoadDog

Sunday, April 19, 2009

589 Miles, Two Cities, and Two Meetings Later-- Part 1-- NTNin' and Drivin' Through Central Illinois

I was on the road Friday until just a short time ago.

Friday, I drove to Springfield, Illinois, Friday, so I could go to the Sons of Confederate veterans Illinois Divison meeting at the Hilton Saturday and the Route 66 Association of Illinois quarterly meeting in Litchfield on Sunday.

I took the usual avoid-Chicago route, Il-47, from Woodstock to Dwight, then got my Kicks on Good Old Route 66 to Bloomington-Normal, then I-55 around it to US-51 south to Decatur.

Gas most of the way was $2.05 to $2.10, but $1.90 around Normal.

This was a ways out of my way, but I wanted to visit some NTN sites that I had been to before.

First stop was at Snapper's on Clinton's beautiful town square. I asked the bartender to play the game and she had no idea what I was talking about. I found out later that NTN was coming to Snapper's. I'll sure go back. Besides a beautiful old town square, there are also several historical places.

Then, I played NTN at B-Dub (Buffalo Wild Wings) in Forsyth, a town a few miles north of Decatur.

Then, went to a great Cheers-type bar with a great name, Just One More, in Decatur. The place was packed, both inside and out with folks enjoying the great weather. I had to look twice upon driving in. There were so many pick ups parked in the lot, I thought it might be a dealership.

Unfortunately, not many people play there. I was the only one playing and I got in on the last eight questions in Countdown and my 5900 ranked #5 of 9 who had played there for the month. My 7300 in the new game ranked #1 for the site. No way that should rank that high this late in the month. If they don't get more players, I'm sure they'll drop it, which would be too bad.

By the way, this was the 800th different NTN site I had played at in the last 12 or so years. I believe this to be the most of any of those of us who are addicted to this dumb game.

Getting Ready to Bar Hop on Route 66. --RoadDog

Friday, April 17, 2009

My Picks for Top Ten Beach Music Songs

This past week, I cast my votes for the top forty Beach Music songs on 94.9 the Surf in North Myrtle Beach, South Carolina, just in time for the Spring SOS (Shagging on the Strand) get-together. I need to go to the summer or fall one some time.

#1. Southern Style-- Mike Stewart
#2. River of Love-- Craig Woolard Band
#3. Motor Under the Hood-- Holiday Band
#4. Love Thang-- Tim Clark Band
#5. Hey Cutie-- High Tide
#6. Life is a Beach-- 58 West
#7. If You Can't Shag-- Reverend Bubba
#8. I've Got Nothing to Lose-- Magnificents
#9. 1 2 3 Kind of Love-- Band of Gold
#10. Everybody Needs Love-- Gold Rush

Some other GREAT Beach Music Titles:

Satisfy My Soul-- Albert Rogers
Sugar Darling-- Gold Rush
Backseat Blues-- Clint Horton
Four Letter Word-- Castaways
Myrtle Beach Again-- Doug Winstead
Hunkybunkhattie-- Fantastic Shakers
Who Stole My Radio?-- Tony Galla
Your Love looks Good on Me-- Castaways

If you're getting tired of the same-old, same-old songs, tune into Endless Summer or the Surf streaming on the internet on Saturday mornings to hear the TOP FORTY Beach Songs. Both lists are quite different.

Shag, for you non-Beach Music folk refers to the dance that goes along with the music.

Sand in My Shoes. --RoadDog

Some More April 1973 Songs

Using Dave McAleer's "The Book of Hit Singles Top 20 Charts" for April, 1973, these were some songs that Bob Stroud did not play.

THE NIGHT THE LIGHTS WENT OUT IN GEORGIA-- VICKIE LAWRENCE
TIE A YELLOW RIBBON ROUND THE OLD OAK TREE-- DAWN

SING-- CARPENTERS
NEITHER ONE OF US-- GLADYS KNIGHT & THE PIPS

AIN'T NO WOMAN (LIKE THE ONE i GOT)-- FOUR TOPS
DANNY'S SONG-- ANNE MURRAY

KILLING ME SOFTLY WITH HIS SONG-- ROBERTA FLACK
THE TWELFTH OF NEVER-- DONNY OSMOND

YOU ARE THE SUNSHINE OF MY LIFE-- STEVIE WONDER
PEACEFUL-- HELEN REDDY

Meanwhile, the Brits had "Cum on Feel the Noize" by Slade and "Why Can't We Live Together" by Timmy Thomas.

Oh, The Memories!! --RoadDog

Thursday, April 16, 2009

Record Store Day is This Saturday, April 18th

The Second annual Record Store Day is fast approaching. Be sure to get out and visit and support your local mom and pop record store. These stores are fast disappearing as is so much that I like and hold dear. This all in the name of progress. But, I like my old stuff and cling on as long as I can.

Nothing finer than flipping through bins of albums and talking music with folk of like nature. In the last few years, I've lost two of my favorites" The Record Rack in Goldsboro, NC, and Full Cyrkle in Crystal Lake, Illinois. I'll be in Springfield, Illinois, on the 18th and will visit an old CD shop near the Hilton Hotel downtown. I can't remember the name right now.

More than a thousand stores world wide are participating. Special 7-inch discs will be released.

The number of "mom and pop" record stores has dropped drastically since the beginning of the 1990s when there were around 7,000. Fewer than 2,000 are around today. Actually, there has been a resurgence of interest in vinyl whose sales climbed 89% last year to 1.8 million.

There are 29 of these stores in the Chicagoland area with more spread throughout Illinois.

I see that another favorite one of mine dating from 1974 in Dekalb, Illinois, the Record Revolution was not listed as a participant, but this is a good place to visit as well.

So get out to support your local record store!!

Albums Rule!!! --RoadDog

Where Were You April 5, 1973? --Part 2

More songs playing on WLS and WCFL and some FM stations by now.

COVER OF THE ROLLING STONE-- DR. HOOK-- let's curl up with a good magazine, now. (You make it on the cover of this, you've made it!)
ROCKY MOUNTAIN HIGH-- JOHN DENVER-- from the late great. (Stay out of those experimental airplanes.)

SPACE ODDITY-- DAVID BOWIE-- (After the previous song) plenty of highs in your radio. A song about four years old at this time, but it didn't happen for him the first time around, but now that he was a big star in the States, the record company re-released the song and it was a hit. (Who'd have figured that.)
WILDFLOWER-- SKYLARK-- one-hit wonder group

LOVE TRAIN-- O'JAYS-- I think we've got an extra ticket for you if you want to hop aboard with the O'Jays.
FRANKENSTEIN-- EDGAR WINTER GROUP-- instrumental (That's some kind of guitar-playing.)

STIR IT UP-- JOHNNY NASH-- Time Warp 4-5-73. Doing a Bob Marley song (An early introduction to reggae. I didn't get into it until 1981 when we went on a dive trip to the Bahamas and heard this great music.)
DEAD SKUNK-- LOUDON WAINWRIGHT III-- A driver's worse nightmare and Loudon Wainwright puts it into words. (I sure would like to find the guy who keeps running over them.)

I'M JUST A SINGER IN A ROCK 'N ROLL BAND-- MOODY BLUES-- As we put you back where you were on this moving and grooving set. From their most recent album "Seventh Sojourn."

And, the #1 Song
ALSO SPRACH ZARATHUSTRA-- DEODATO-- was the theme that Elvis used to let us know he was in the building. (What a guy.) It's also commonly referred to as the "Theme from 2001" but, it's actually a classical piece of music composed by Richard Straus. (Sure glad I never had to pronounce this.)

Other song bits (used to introduce segments after commercial breaks)
Delilah- Tom Jones
Big City Miss Ruth Anne-- Gallery (never heard of it before)

Whoa, the Seventies. --RoadDog

Attention Beach Fans!! Dr. Beach's Top Ten

A little late, but a Beach is a Beach is a Beach. And a few months won't make that big of a difference.

Dr. Beach's 2008 Top Ten Beaches.

1. Caladesi Island State Park-- Dunedin/Clearwater, Fl
2. Hanalei Beach- Kauai, Hawaii
3. Siesta Beach-- Sarasota, Fl.
4. Cooper's Beach-- Southhampton, NY
5. Coronado Beach-- San Diego, Ca
6. Main Beach-- East Hampton, NY
7. Hamon Beach-- Maui, Hawaii
8. Cape Hatteras-- Outer Banks, NC
9. Cape Florida State Park-- Key Biscayne, Fl
10. Beachwalker Park-- Kiawah Island, SC

What, no Panama City Beach or Destin Beach, Fl.? I've been to Coronado Beach and Cape Hatteras. I think Beachwalker might be a private beach. I don't have much use for private beaches. Power to the PEOPLE!!

Great Way to Spend a Day. --RoadDog

Wednesday, April 15, 2009

A Dog's Flick View

This will be my short take on movies I have seen in the theaters in 2009. My cost ().

Jan. 7th-- SEVEN POUNDS-- ($4)-- Is there any role Will Smith can't play?

Jan. 9th-- VALKYRE-- ($5.50)-- "There are no problems in the world that can't be fixed with explosives." This was one B-I-G problem.

Jan. 11th-- THE STRANGE CASE OF BENJAMIN BUTTON-- ($5.50)-- "I've been struck by lightning seven times." Life in reverse.

Jan. 25th-- GRAN TORINO-- ($3)-- Not the ending I was expecting. Another great Eastwood effort.

Jan. 26th-- REVOLUTIONARY ROAD-- ($7)-- DeCaprio and Winslett in the 50s. Mad Men, Part 2. Smoke that cigarette.

It's a movie thing, you wouldn't understand.

Spending Too Much Time at the Movies. --RoadDog

Economic Evolution

The May Ladies' Home Journal had a graphic showing the impact of the economic woes on various sectors.

After the sector, is the PRE-RECESSION item, DOWNTURN items, and, then, as it gets worse, ROCK BOTTOM:


SHOPPING-- recreational shopping-- necessity shopping-- urgent shopping (like toilet paper)

HAIR CARE-- salon color and cut-- sun for the highlights-- ponytail

SKIN CARE-- Botox-- wrinkle cream-- natural aging

ENTERTAINMENT-- Theater-- Movies-- Monopoly

STAYING COOL-- mountain vacation-- blow-up pool-- popsicle

HEALTH CARE-- prescription medicine-- home remedy-- Band-aid

LHJ telling it like it is.

I'd Laugh, But It AIN'T Funny. Thanks AIG. --RoadDog

Where Were You April 5, 1973?-- Part 1

Bob Stroud jumped ahead five years for the second part of his time warp.

I was a senior at Northern Illinois University, preparing to graduate. I was living with Liz's parents in Palatine, Illinois, while doing my student teaching at Maine West High School in Des Plaines. I had two teachers overseeing me, Mr. Magnuson for freshman geography, my minor, and Mr. Winter for sophomore world history.

Sure was frightening that first time I got up to teach class and saw all those eyes looking at me. And, I was just six years older than the sophomores. I ended up teaching 33 years, so must have survived student teaching.

These songs certainly reminded me of driving back and forth to school.

DRIFT AWAY-- DOBIE GRAY-- Man, you can just smell the 70s, can't you
STUCK IN THE MIDDLE WITH YOU-- STEALER'S WHEEL (I think Gerry Rafferty sang with them.)

THE CISCO KID-- WAR-- brand new
DANCING IN THE MOONLIGHT-- KING HARVEST-- one hit wonder, named selves after the Band song.

YOU'RE SO VAIN-- CARLY SIMON-- with help from Mick Jagger. (Was she singing about him? Probably not, no prancing.)
LITTLE WILLY-- SWEET-- some of the glam rock that was creeping into the radio.

HUMMINGBIRD-- SEALS AND CROFTS-- (My favorite S & C song. Seals was the brother of Dan Seals aka England Dan of the duo England Dan and John Ford Coley. Dan Seals just died and had that great country song "Bop."
CALL ME (COME BACK HOME)-- AL GREEN-- there was a period of time of about 4-5 years where it seemed like there was always a great Al Green song on the radio, including this period. Al's latest release. (As the Beach Music deejays like to say, The Right Reverend, Al Green.)

Hey, I Have to Stop for the 32 Cent Gas. --RoadDog

Tuesday, April 14, 2009

It's Them, Not Me: The "AIG Effect"-- No More AIG-- What Tax Break?

Things That Burn My Butt.


1. THE "AIG EFFECT"-- I see that US corporations have canceled $1 billion worth of conferences (read P-A-R-T-I-E-S) and have trimmed back others in these days when more and more folks are getting upset as corporate types cavort at the expense of regular types. Good. Maybe we're finally getting through their over-inflated egos.


2. NO MORE AIG-- Sweet words indeed. They need to go the way of Enron. It is estimated that AIG, one of the main reasons we're in this economic mess along with Big Oil and Hedge Funds, by 2010 will be just a fraction of itself after all the planned spinoffs, mergers, and downsizing. Glad to hear this. Now, if all their leadership and investing folks would just be blacklisted. People like this should not be able to create havoc again. I know we now have Valic back instead of AIG on our statements.


3. WHAT TAX BREAK-- I must have been overlooked, but I'm not getting any money back, but AM paying a lot more in addition to what I already paid. What gives?

Don't Look Back, They May Be Gaining. --RoadDog

Where Were You April 5, 1968?-- Part 3

More songs on CFL and LS as in W. Again, Bob's quotes after. Mine in parentheses ().

IF YOU CAN WAIT-- SMOKEY ROBINSON & THE MIRACLES-- A real Beatles fave.
(SWEET SWEET BABY) SINCE YOU'VE BEEN GONE-- ARETHA FRANKLIN-- (A favorite by the Queen of Soul.)

UP ON THE ROOF-- CRYAN' SHAMES-- In the top ten with their version (of the Drifters song)
SOUND ASLEEP-- TURTLES-- with their psychedelic pop (Not familiar with this one.)

VALLERI-- MONKEES-- The "A" side of "Tapioca Tundra"
SUMMERTIME BLUES-- BLUE CHEER-- the other SF group in that set (back announced). Their version. Eddie Cochran must have rolled over when he heard that one. ("No dice son, you got to work late.")
DANCE TO THE MUSIC-- SLY & THE FAMILY STONE-- From one side of San Francisco to the other. Plenty of music to dance to.

And, the Number 1 Song:

I WILL ALWAYS THINK ABOUT YOU-- NEW COLONY SIX-- I remember being in Florida on spring break with my parents in 1968 and hearing this number one song and thinking, 'Wow, these local heroes finally have a hit outside Chicago.' This was their first national hit on your radio 41 years ago today. Ray Grafia and Ronnie Rice and the New Colony Six.
(All I could think was that Bob was in the car with his parents and they were letting him listen to HIS MUSIC. Whenever we were with my parents, we had to listen to THEIR music, and this was before Walkmans or IPODS or the like.. This was one of Liz and my "songs" along with the Bee gees' "Massachusetts."

Up Next, the Jump Ahead Five Years to April 5, 1973. --RoadDog

A Water-wise Lawn-- Part 3

Continuing from April 11th.

As I said, cut high and accept summer dormancy. Those lawns don't have to be lush green all summer. And, it takes a LOT of water.

Another biggie to me is #9. Fertilize, but not too much. A lawn should not need the five-times a year fertilizing that the fertilizer companies say is optimal. I wonder why they would say that. Twice a year is enough. Plus, when you don't fertilize or water, it doesn't grow as fast which means fewer cuttings.

I go many years without doing it at all. I do have a triple mulching blade on my mower deck, so that helps a lot as well. That is self-fertilizing of the cheapest kind.

Plus, #4, get sturdy grass. Most of mine is fescue with a little bluegrass in spots and other grasses.

As far as watering, I don't water the grass, except where it gets it from the flower beds. That is, unless there is an extended drought and then, just over the septic fields. Grass is resilient and will come back.

It's a Green Thing. --RoadDog

Monday, April 13, 2009

That Crazy Squirrel

I spent quite awhile yesterday morning watching a squirrel in my back yard. We are a newer subdivision and our part was just fields back 18 years ago, so the trees are just now getting big enough to attract those bushy-tailed rats that are so much fun to watch.

I mean, I could spend hours watching these critters and occasionally annoying them with noises or movement.

I was listening to Bob Stroud in the sun room as he did his "For the Love of Money" show because of taxes coming due and the state of the economy. I saw a piece of newspaper that had blown into the yard and had become lodged by a tree in the arboretum all of a sudden start jumping around. There not being much wind, I kept watching until I saw a small, gray, furry head pop out one side with a mouth bulging with newspaper.

It then scampered off to a neighbor's yard and climbed a tree. During the course of the next hour or so, the squirrel made at least ten trips, each time with bulging mouth. Must have been building a nest in that tree.

It would attack that paper with relish. On two different occasions, it moved the paper section toward the tree and I thought it would catch on to a labor and running-saving measure, but it didn't.

I filmed the proceedings for posterity.

It Sure Doesn't Take Much to Entertain Me. --RoadDog

Where Were You April 5, 1968? --Part 2

Continued from April 9th.

(SITTIN' ON) THE DOCK OF THE BAY-- OTIS REDDING-- recorded in Memphis at Stax-- (My absolute favorite sould guy. Unfortunately, released after his death. What could have been?)
CRY LIKE A BABY-- BOX TOPS-- Recorded across town in Memphis at American Studio-- (Who says white guys can't sing soul? A very under-rated group.)

I GOT THE FEELIN'-- JAMES BROWN-- great standard classic by him-- (Hey, the Godfather of Soul, Please, Please, Please.)
SIMON SAYS-- 1910 FRUITGUM COMPANY-- from funky to faulty, it's all here. (I don't care who knows it. I am a BIG fan of Bubble Gum Music. What a great name for a Bubble Gum group. Early Boy Band stuff.)

MONY MONY-- TOMMY JAMES & THE SHONDELLS-- Brand new in your radio. It was misprinted on a local radio station's survey 41 years ago this week as "Many Many." Loses something, doesn't it?-- (Hard to hear this one and not think about the "special" Billy Idol-era words everyone would say. Once, I was deejaying a junior high dance back then and the kids kept begging me to play this song. I finally broke down and played it after warning them that I would stop the song immediately if they said those words. I played it, they did, and I did.)

LOVE IS ALL AROUND-- TROGGS-- (They did something BESIDES "Wild Thing.")
TAPIOCA TUNDRA-- MONKEES-- "B" side. A great one by Michael Nesmith. (Is this a psychedelic name or what?)

LADY MADONNA-- BEATLES-- "A" side-- (What's so surprising about having a Beatle song in a survey in 1968? Or, 1967? Or, 1966, for that matter?)
THE INNER LIGHT-- BEATLES-- "B" side. Sounds like it could have come straight out of the soundtrack for "Slumdog Millionaire," but it is the Beatles' George Harrison.

All Sorts of Music on the Teen Surveys Back Then. More Memories to Come. --RoadDog

Saturday, April 11, 2009

An Abbreviated Trip

Some High Points of the recent trip to visit family back at the end of March and early April.

MARCH 19th-- Thursday

Back to the 66
Pontiac's Getting Better
No maple Candy for Us
Old Coot and Fran
Cozy Dog
It's a Shaw Thing

MARCH 20th-- Friday

Henry and Scotty's and the Chain
Jackin' the Tacos and Jumbos
Nostalgiaville
Beginning of the Trails
Doin' the Sonic Thing I

MARCH 21st-- Saturday

Harry's Hometown
Liberty and Lee and Ray
Doin' the Sonic Thing II

MARCH 22nd-- Sunday

It's a Cuz' Thing
Going to Kansas City (here I Come)

MARCH 23rd-- Monday

Super Slabbin' Again
Jackin' the Box Again
Ol' Boring Illinois
Indiana's Oldest
Much More Interesting Drive
Louie's Home

MARCH 24th-- Tuesday

Still Slabbing
Bluegrass State of Mind
Grazin' at the Corral
The Colonel Would Have Been So Proud
Mountain Drive
Spartans and Greens

More Travelin' to Come. --RoadDog

A Water-wise Lawn-- Part 2

My comments on Beth Botts' Chicago Tribune article from earlier today.

I agree with #1 and #7 completely. I always move the cutting setting up during the summer and move it down in the spring and fall. Part of the reason for lower settings in the spring is that I don't want the grass to get ahead of me. With an acre of land to cut (minus the flower beds and house, of course), I can't let it get too far ahead of me.

Come the dry days, my grass goes brown. It will come back. However, I did learn in the mini-drought we had a few years ago, that you'd better water over the septic field. All my grass came back within a week once the rains came, except that over the septic lines, which took three years to get back, and even then, it's weak.

Since we're on well water in the subdivision, this saves electricity for the pump and water. I'm not sure how much water we have down there. Several of my neighbors insist on keeping a perfectly green lawn at all times and I was more than a bit worried during the drought that they were going to use up all the water down there.

If I don't have water to drink or shower in because of their yard, I would have been quite upset to say the least.

In short, cut high and embrace the summer dormancy.

More Green Stuff to Come. --RoadDog

Some More April, 1968 Music

I goofed and added songs that Bob Stroud didn't play at my Cooter's History Thing Blog. Today's date.

http://cootershistorything.blogspot.com

The songs are from Dave McAleer's "The Book of Hit Singles Top 20 Charts." I also included some songs on the British charts.

A Water-wise Lawn

As Spring is upon us here in the Midwest most of the time, now, time has come to consider those things outside the doors and windows.

Yardwork Cometh.

The April 5th Chicago Tribune ran an article on ten things you can do to have a water-wise lawn, where you don't have to water as much.

1. Mow it high
2. Get a Rain Gauge
3. Check how wet (dig up a piece and check moisture)
4. Get sturdy grass-- fescue good, bluegrass not so good
5. Establish grass well-- should only have to water new grass and seed a lot

6. Seek out good sod
7. Embrace summer dormancy
8. Water long and deep
9. Fertilize, but not too much
10. And work on the soil-- top-dress it

According to Beth Botts.

Lots of good ideas here. I'll add mine later.

How Come Weeds Grow Without Any Care at All? --RoadDog

Friday, April 10, 2009

This Being a Time of Eggs-- Part 2

Continuing with Mark Jacobs' ode to da eggs.

6. In golfing slang-- a ball half-buried in a bunker is called a "fried egg." In diner terminology, scrambled eggs on toast is "Adam and Eve on a raft, and wreck 'em." (My grandmother used to make me "Eggs in a Nest" which would be a fried egg in a piece of toast.)

7. No one seems to know who the Benedict in eggs Benedict was. One legend has it that LeGrand Benedict asked the chef at Delmonico's in NYC to invent a new egg dish. Another that Harry Benedict at the NYC Waldorf Astoria wanted something to help him get over a hangover. (Either way, I really like 'em.)

8. In Feb. 2006, in Tumwater, Washington, residents awoke to find Nazi-leaflets attached to plastic eggs in their yards. (Jackboots on chickens?)

9. Joseph Coyle ran a small newspaper in British Columbia until he quit to go into business after inventing the egg carton. (News to Eggs to Me.)

10. Birds lay eggs that are from 1 to 10 % of their body weight. New Zealand's strange kiwi bird lays one that is 25%. That would be like a 120 pound human woman having a 24 pound baby. (Ouch!!)

No mention about Green Eggs and Ham, though.

Where Does Mark get All This Stuff? --RoadDog

This Being a Time of Eggs

Eggs get kind of popular about this time of the year for some reason.

Good old Marl Jacob had another one of his highly informative and interesting "Ten Things You Might Not Know About" EGGS articles in the April 5th Chicago Tribune. I felt compelled to mention some of the things. Parentheses my words.


1. When the Bulls' Michael Jordan and Scottie Pippen were in their prime, Jordan liked to say they were "ham-and-egging." This meant that one would start strong and the other would finish strong, and the opponents were toast. (They sure were.)

2. President Woodrow Wilson drank two eggs at breakfast every day. (Guess that's the original raw chicken.)

3. Japanese artist Hokusai sometimes paints with eggs. (Very egginstring.)

4. The Beatles song "Yesterday" was called "Scrambled Eggs" before it was finished. (Wonder what "She Came in Through the Bathroom Window" was called.)

5. In the 30s and 40s, a common numbers racket (before we had lotto) was called "butter and eggs." You could bet on the closing commodity price for eggs and butter. Before that, a "butter-and-egg man" was slang for a visitor with a lot of money, a yokel ready to lose his dough. (Interesting history lesson.)

More Eggciting Stuff to Come. --RoadDog

JSS: Strange Objects in Yard-- Big Twenty for RMD

JSS-- Just Some Stuff


1. STRANGE OBJECTS IN YARD-- This morning, shortly after daylight, I looked out into our backyard and saw two strange things on the ground. Look as I might, I just couldn't make them out. Were they some garbage that had blown over? One looked a little like a bunny rabbit, the other a bit like a bunny, but with something dark by it.

THEN, THEY MOVED. It was a pair of mallard ducks. We're a bit far from the nearest water. However, a mama mallard has had clutches of peepers in the yard several times over the last few years. We've frightened each other several times when I first find her nest. Then, I stay away as much a possible.

I find the broken eggs and no babies. Not sure how they get to water, but hope they get to water, somehow.


2. BIG TWENTY FOR RMD-- Heard on WBBM-AM this morning that Chicago's Mayor, Richard M. Daley, has been in that position for twenty years now. That's getting up to his dad's (Richard J. Daley) numbers.

Wonder if he will find a way to put a tax on his tenure. Seems like he's found taxing on everything else. And, we're not even going to get into parking in that town.

What a Rip-Off. --RoadDog

Thursday, April 9, 2009

Way to Go, Tarheels!!!

It was a VERY boring game on Monday, but, at least the North Carolina Tarheels won and are NATIONAL CHAMPIONS again!!! They are my favorite Big-Time school in college basketball and hopefully some of those players thinking of jumping to the NBA will see what can happen if you stay down on the farm and hone your skills longer. Congratulations to Hainsborough and Lawlor for sticking around.

Unfortunately, they did cost me first place in my tournament pool, where I dropped to fourth, but at least UNC won. Plus, I didn't have any money invested, so "didn't lose nuthin'."

How many national championships is that now?

Tarheels!! --RoadDog

Where Were You April 5, 1968?

Well, I was a junior at Palatine High School, enjoying US History with Mr. Peterson, but suffering through Language Arts with Mrs. Salzer, whom we called "Flo Baby." but not to her face, of course. She didn't much care for me. Even worse, I was now a Cub Sports Reporter with the school paper, The Cutlass (we were the Palatine Pirates, get it!). She was the faculty advisor.

I was dating Liz (my wife) and had been "going steady" since December 15th when I gave her my ID bracelet. She was anticipating the arrival of class rings in May for some reason.


Bob Stroud had his monthly Time Warp this past Sunday to this date in '68 and '73. These are the top songs being played in Chicago on WLS and WCFL. His quotes follow. Mine are in parentheses ().

Welcome to three hours of the 60s and 70s. Warping you back 41 years to April 5, 1968. You have a front row seat for what it was like this day 41 years ago. (Sure brought back some memories.)


A BEAUTIFUL MORNING-- RASCALS-- latest release and they are the Rascals now, no longer the Young Rascals. (Great Beach Music song as well. Easy to Shag (the dance)to.)
FOREVER CAME TODAY-- DIANA ROSS & THE SUPREMES-- Latest release (One of my favorite by them and not one of their better known efforts. Oooh, they said "Ooh," ala the Beatles.)

THE MIGHTY QUINN (QUINN THE ESKIMO)-- MANFRED MANN-- a tune Dylan had written, but not released yet.
JENNIFER JUNIPER-- DONOVAN

TIGHTEN UP-- ARCHIE BELL & THE DRELLS-- first of 4-5 hits for the band out of Houston, Texas. (And they told you where they were from. "And we dance just as good as we want." Let's build the song one instrument at a time.)
SCARBOROUGH FAIR/CANTICLE-- SIMON & GARFUNKEL-- Right in the middle of an Austin Powers Love Fest (Bob was referring to the next three songs as being from current movies.) The song was over a year old, but was in a film called "The Graduate" playing in theaters.

THE GOOD, THE BAD, AND THE UGLY-- HUGO MONTENEGRO-- going from movie to movie and theater to theater. (Let's get those close ups of the eyes.)
THE BALLAD OF BONNIE AND CLYDE-- GEORGIE FAME-- Not a part of the flick, but the film was out.

More Memories to Come. --RoadDog

Wednesday, April 8, 2009

JSS: No CDs at the K-- Still Lots at the Best-- Truck Passed-- Eyes Passed

JSS-- Just Some Stuff


1. NO CDS AT THE K-- Wednesday, I was at the K Mart in Crystal Lake, Illinois, and went to the electronics section. THEY DID NOT HAVE ANY CDS FOR SALE!!! Not even one!!! I know that day is fast approaching in all stores, but this was the first I've seen. And, it's sad. I love to browse. I used to love browsing albums, then cassettes, then CDs.

YOU JUST CAN'T BROWSE DOWNLOADS!!! You can't physically touch them as you flip them.

2. STILL LOTS AT THE BEST-- However, next door, there were lots and lots of CDs at Best Buy. They got 60 bucks of my dough with new albums by Jason Aldean, Taylor Swift, Rascal Flats, Keith Urban, Zak Brown and Ray Charles. All were on sale at $9.99 and Zak was $7.99. I shouldn't watch the Country Awards Show before going to a record store. And, hey, old Brother Ray was a bit country too.


3. TRUCK PASSED-- I was in Crystal Lake to have an emissions test on the Dakota. It passed (it should since its a 2005), but even better, it was f-a-s-t==. I went right in and about three minutes later was finished.

4. EYES PASSED TOO-- I also had to go to Woodstock to get a new drivers license which expired on my birthday in May. Again, this was f-a-s-t==. Went in and was out in about eight minutes, including an eye test and ten bucks. Ever since I started driving, I've had an eyeglasses restriction. Finally one part of me that's not wearing out. It's even getting better. I now do not have to wear glasses to drive, these 41 years later.

How About That? --RoadDog

Monday, April 6, 2009

Top Songs This Date-- Part 2

Continuing with the number one songs for this date through the years.

1968-- Dock of the Bay-- Otis Redding-- (What a singer!)
1967-- Happy Together-- Turtles
1966-- Soul and Inspiration-- Righteous Brothers (Right there with "You've Lost that Loving Feeling"
1965-- I'm Telling You Now-- Freddie & the Dreamers-- (Come on, Let's Do the Freddie)
1964-- Can't Buy Me Love-- Beatles
1963-- He's So Fine-- Chiffons (Love those girl groups)
1962-- Johnny Angel-- Shelly Fabres-- (Johnny Gag Me)
1961-- Blue Moon-- Marcels-- (Always thought this was a fifties song.)
1960-- Theme from a Summer Place-- Percy Faith
1959-- Venus-- Frankie Avalon
1949-- Cruising Down the River-- Russ Morgan
1939-- Deep Purple-- Larry Clinton (Well, I've at least heard of it, but not by him.

Quit Humming Along. --RoadDog

Retiring Cub Numbers-- Part 2

The Cubs will be retiring Greg Maddux and Ferguson Jenkins' #31 on May 3rd before playing the Florida Marlins at Wrigley.

According to an article byFred Mitchell in the March 19th Chicago Tribune, Jenkins said he originally wanted #30 when he came over with Adolfo Phillips and John Hernstein in 1966 for Bob Buhl and Larry Jackson, but Ken Holtzman already had it. His birthday was Dec. 13th so he reversed the numbers.

Maddux was only 20 and too much in awe to say anything about #31, especially when he learned that Fergie had worn it before him.

Jenkins was 284-226 with the Cubs (10 years), Phillies, Rangers, and Red Sox and won the NL Cy Young Award in 1971. He won 20 or more games six straight years for the Cubs from 1967-1972.

Maddux pitched for the Cubs from 1986 to 1992 compiling a 95-73 record before they let him leave due to free agency. He came back for three more years 2004 to 2006 and was 38-37.

Well deserved, guys.

Two Greats, Indeed. --RoadDog

Top Songs This Date

Thinking back on music of years past and today.

These are the #1 songs for April 5th through the years according to Billboard, my final authority for all things music.

I'll do all the 60s and 70s as these years were pretty important to me.

TODAY-- LADY GA GA-- Poker Face (not familiar with it)
1999-- No Scrubs-- TLC
1989-- The Look-- Roxette
1979-- Tragedy-- Bee Gees (Come on, let's all sing real high!)
1978-- Night Fever-- Bee Gees (Come on, Johnny Boy)
1977-- Dancing Queen-- Abba
1976-- Disco Lady-- Johnnie Taylor
1975-- Philadelphia Freedom-- Elton John
1974-- Hooked on a Feeling-- Blue Swede (I don't know about you, but I always have to "Ooga Chaka" three of four times on this one.)
1973-- The Night the Lights Went Out in Georgia-- Vicki Lawrence (carol's younger twin)
1972-- Horse With No Name-- America(a definitive college song for me)
1971-- Just My Imagination-- Temptations
1970-- Let It Be-- Beatles (sure got tired of this one. TOO S-L-O-W.)
1969-- Aquarius/Let the Sunshine In-- Fifth Dimension

Bringing Back the Memories. --RoadDog

Sunday, April 5, 2009

Retiring Cubs Numbers

While on the subject of the new baseball season, I see that the Cubs are retiring the number of two of my favorite players #31: Ferguson Jenkins and Greg Maddux.

And, wow, the four other retired numbers 31 is joining!!!

#14-- Ernie Banks-- "Mr. Cub"-- 512 home runs (all with Cubs), two-time NL MVP ('58 and '59), 14 time NL All-Star.

#10-- Ron Santo-- 342 career homers (337 with Cubs), five gold gloves, 9-time All-Star AND SHOULD BE IN HALL OF FAME!!!

#26-- Billy Williams-- 426 career homers (392 with Cubs), 1961 NL Rookie of the Year, Played 1,117 consecutive games (1963-1970), career .290 hitter

#23-- Ryne Sandberg-- 282 career home runs (all with Cubs), 1984 NL MVP, 10 time NL All-Star, nine Gold Gloves.

These guys bleed Cub blue.

That's Some Mighty Good Baseball. --RoadDog

JSS: Snow!!!-- Sox Cancelled-- Tarheels!!!

Just Some Stuff.


1. SNOW!!!!-- Started snowing heavily yesterday when we got home from Coz's and Mar's. Forecast calls for up to 4-5 inches. Sorry you snowmobilers. Hope we don't. It's SPRING for crying out loud!!! Hey, it's also almost boating season, zebras and all.


2. SOX CANCELLED-- Tomorrow's season opener of the Sox has been called off due to the weather. Come on, April 6th and snow and 30s!!! Well, at least the Cubs will get to play tomorrow night.


3. TARHEELS-- However, I will be paying the most attention to the NCAA Championship game and pulling for Carolina, my favorite of the Big-Time schools. I'm also originally from North Carolina, but have lived so long in the Midwest, I've become a Big Ten fan, so won't be too upset if Michigan State wins. However, go HEELS!!!

A Sporting and Freezing I Go. --RoadDog

Saturday, April 4, 2009

JSS: Got Home-- Final Four-- First Flower-- Yardwork

JSS-- Just Some Stuff.


1. GOT HOME-- After nearly 3,800 miles, 16 days, 8 states, 58 new NTN sites, a wedding, a beach, cousins, eating, and many interesting towns (including not one, but two Charlestons), we pulled our tired selves into the garage last night.

Liz immediately went checking the pcs to make sure that worm wasn't around.


2. FINAL FOUR-- I have my bourbon lines up for the Final Four games today in Margaritaville (the basement bar). I still have three of the four teams in: UNC, UConn, and Villanova. I have UNC and UConn in the final, with Connecticut winning (BUT WILL BE PULLING FOR CAROLINA!!!) Doing a whole lot better than usual on my picks. How'd I know Nova was getting there?


3. FIRST FLOWER-- Went outside this morning and picked the first flower of the season, a daffodil as usual. Daffodils are the smell of spring to me.


4. YARDWORK-- In a short while, I'll be going outside to do some more yardwork. It's been over two weeks since I last worked on it.

It's That Time of the Year, You Know. --RoadDog

Got Lucky With the Beach Music

A few days ago, I mentioned how we'd found two great Beach Music stations, 95.1 FM (John FM) and 1340 AM (The Boardwalk), that both programmed that Shagging Music 24 hours a day, and even better, stream out over the internet. They join 94.9 the Surf in North Myrtle Beach in the format.

South Carolina's official dance now has three stations playing it over the airwaves and on the internet, as well as Fessa Hooks' Endless Summer as well as quite a few stations on Live 365. Having problems getting the Fessa in lately.

I may not live near ground central, but I can sure get that great music.

I was listening to the Surf do the Beach Top 40, and some of Billy Smith's live show with the 60s high school reunion group. Now, I'm listening to the Boardwalk.

"Fooled Around and Fell in Love" by Elvin Bishop playing right now.

The Boardwalk just went from Talk Radio (Yuck!) to Beach this past Friday, so I picked a good time to tune in. "If You Can't Shag, Get Your ---- Out of Carolina."

Shaggin' My Ears Away. --RoadDog

On US-52-- Part 2

Took US Highway 52 through land that bore proof of the popular local term of "Low Country." At one point, the highway was referred to as a causeway for quite a few a few miles where it was obviously built up higher than the swamps.

Florence, South Carolina, the city of lotsa' cars and long stoplights (especially the one with three roads intersecting), Went to Irby's to play NTN, but it is a private club (and the NTN was down). We did play at Indigo Joe's, which has a good group of NTNers, but none there when we visited.

Drove US-52 on up to Cheraw where we soon after crossed over into North Carolina. Then on to Albemarle and Salisbury where we got a room for the night and played NTN at Baylee's Steakhouse and Sorts Theater, so-named because of the ten giant screens surrounding the bar.

Still 52in'. --RoadDog

Thursday, April 2, 2009

On US-52

We decided to take US Highway 52 part of the way back home.

We've been on parts of it in Illinois and Iowa, and a few years ago, I drove it all the way from Joliet, Illinois, to Winston-Salem, North Carolina.

I'd never driven it to the eastern/southern terminus in Charleston, South Carolina.

Since we were already in Charleston, it seemed to be the logical thing to do to take it to Winston-Salem.

Where the actual eastern terminus is located is confusing. We must have driven all over the town before finding a US-52 sign over by East Bay Street. We then followed it down to the Battery and then back. At some point, we must have crossed the terminus.

Believe me, downtown Charleston traffic is no small thing.

Followed the road through some rough areas of town out to the suburbs of North Charleston and two with interesting names of Goose Creek (a favorite college band of mine was Goosecreek Symphony who redid Janis Joplin's "Mercedes Benz" so well) and Monck's Corner. Actually stopped in Monck's Corner and finally had our first meal at a Chuch's Fried Chicken. It was every bit as good as we'd heard they were.

On Da Road. --RoadDog