Saturday, December 31, 2011

As 2011 Gives Way to 2012

A look back at 2011 for Liz and myself.

I deejayed my last job at George's Cedar Inn in Lake Villa, Illinois. I'm retired from that now as well.

We fully funded our education scholarship at Northern Illinois University and two students received money for student teaching.

I have now been retired 5 1/2 years. Where does the time go? Doesn't seem like it.

We bought a 2011 Malibu for trips. That joins a 2003 Malibu, 1985 Firebird, 2005 Dakota. I need to sell one, but not sure.

In addition we have a 1994 lawn tractor and a 2003 boat.

No wonder I spend so much on gas.

I went to North Carolina three times to visit family. Liz and my two major trips were to Panama City Beach and a Missouri/Illinois Route 66 trip.

I will be starting two new blogs tomorrow, one on World War II and one on the Civil War Navy.

I spend way too much time researching and typing, but enjoy it.

And a Happy New Year to You. --RoadDog

Why I Don't Go to Blackhawks Games

From the July 30, 2010, Chicago Tribune "Hawks: More red than black."

And, this was from last year.

Actually, a Blackhawk ticket is (was) one of the cheaper ones back then at $46.80 average. The Stars were at 35.66 and Maple Leafs at $114.10.

This graphic shocked me:

BLACKHAWKS FAN COST (family of four)

2 adult tickets $93.60
2 child tickets $93.60
2 small draft beers $14.00
4 small soft drinks $20.00
4 regular size hot dogs $23.00
2 game programs $10.00 (OK, save $5 and share one)
2 caps $40.00
Parking for one car $25.00

Yeah, Right. I'll Pay That Much. -- No Spring Chicken RoadDog

HOW'S THAT AGAIN? No spring chicken...(not young anymore>)

Friday, December 30, 2011

Anchovies and House Dressings

Whenever I go into a new restaurant and get a salad, I always inquire as to a possible house dressing. If they have one, I order it. You never know what you'll get. Some were real dogs, but many superb.

One place I used to like to go to, but can't hardly afford anymore (plus they're too far away in these days of GRB gas prices) was Carson's, the place known for their ribs, a well-deserved reputation.

We ate several times at the flagship place in Chicago. I found out their house dressing was anchovy-based. After a momentary pause, I dove right into it and ordered it on the salad. Anchovies be damned, full speed ahead!!

I got the salad and forked right into it. Hey, that's mighty good!! Actually, you didn't much taste it, but the anchovies were a nice addition.

When At Carson's, Always Get the Anchovy-Based Salad Dressing. --RoadDog

Movie Scratches: Story-- Sitter-- Eve-- Sherlock

For the year, I saw 72 movies. I think that is a record. I saw my last one Dec. 21st and would have liked to see more of the ones out right now, but have to wait until school is back in session and people off vacations.

I am not a big fan of crowded movie theaters.

69. A CHRISTMAS STORY--12-10-- WOODSTOCK $1-- My all-time favorite Christmas movie for first time on a big screen. Full theater with about half adults who did almost all the laughing. Today's kids just don't get it. "I Triple-Dog Dare You."

70. THE SITTER-- 12-14-- FOX LAKE $4-- A slacker gets and gives valuable life lessons.

71. NEW YEAR'S EVE-- 12-20-- FOX LAKE $5.50-- Lives interconnecting in New York on that day.

72. SHERLOCK HOLMES: GAME OF SHADOWS-- 12-21-- FOX LAKE $4-- What dastardly thing will the prof think of next? Dr. Watson brings a cannon to a shootout.

Sure Enjoyed This Year's Crop of Movies. --RoadDog

WHAT'S THAT AGAIN? Needs taking down a notch or two...(usually a young person who thinks too highly of himself and needs a lesson.)

Thursday, December 29, 2011

Scenes in a Bar: Generational Beer? and Anchovy Pizza

Last night, Liz and I were at Tommy's in Spring Grove, Illinois, enjoying their $1 domestic bottle special along with a bunch of other folks. (Earlier we had been at The Dill Pickle in the same village having 35 cent jumbo wings and $6 pitchers of beer.)


I saw a man and his son sitting next to us having their bottles of beer (the buck bottles are Miller products, the "Big" beer here in the area). Was this a generational thing, but the father was drinking a bottle of Miller High Life. His son was drinking Miller's Genuine Draft.


Later, the two men next to us on the other side of us split a pizza. When it arrived, it had a particular aroma. We heard them say that it was half anchovy. Then, there was a general discussion as to the relative merits of anchovy pizza.

I'd always heard it was REALLY bad tasting, but never had an anchovy pizza. After all, who in their right mind would order a whole one? What if you don't like it? I finally offered to pay for a piece, but the anchovy guy had finished eating with half of his half left and said I could have a piece for free.


I got my piece and it was every bit as salty and fishy tasting as I heard. OK, but I would never order a whole (or even half) pizza of it.

The guy then had the rest of the pizza put in a box and took it home. he said his son regularly scrounges through the refrigerator for food and would find the box and eat. He couldn't wait to see the expression on his son's face when he bit into it.

"Dad, What the Hell??!!" --RoadDog

How's This for Some Soul for You?-- Part 2

Continuing with the WDAS Philadelphia Soul Sounds Survey of June 26, 1967.

16. HERE WE GO AGAIN-- Ray Charles
17. MORE LOVE-- Miracles
18. ALFIE-- Dionne Warwick
19. I NEED YOU SO-- Cruisers
20. SHAKE, RATTLE & ROLL-- Arthur Conley

21. GOOD TIMES ROLL-- Bunny Sigler
22. ALL I NEED-- Temptations
23. DO THE THING-- Lou Courtney
24. UNCHANGING LOVE-- Marvin Gaye
25. NERVOUS DADDY-- James Thomas

26. I COULD BE SO HAPPY-- Magnificent Men
27. FOUR WALLS-- J.J. Jackson
28. FOR YOUR LOVE-- Peaches & Herb
29. IT'S BEEN A LONG TIME-- Elgins
30. WASHED ASHORE-- The Platters

Some Mighty Good Stuff On This Survey. --RoadDog

HOW'S THAT AGAIN? Madder than a wet hen...(Really Mad)

Wednesday, December 28, 2011

Hooked On NTN

Monday, we went to J's Sports Bar in Ingleside and had the half price pizza, BLT of course and down one-three beers pints for $1.25 and played NTN. Besides all the repeat games, judging from the extremely high scores, we had big problems answering the last question in each game and ended up with just one Top Twenty, #11.

We only play to get in the Top twenties.

Yesterday, we met friends and really good NTN players Kevin and Kelly at Donovan's Reef in Twin Lakes, Wi., and did considerably better.

We had twelve Top twenties, nine in the Top Ten.

#10, #5 DBLK #1 (10,000), #4, #7, #13, #9, #11, #7, #3 Parrot #8 Malibu #10, #10, #12 and #12 DBLK #4.

Not bad for a little old bar out in the Cheesehead Boonies.

Gotta Getta Life. --RoadDog

A Revolting Bears Season

Just five weeks ago, things were rolling along as nice as you please, with a four-game winning streak putting Da Bears at 7-3 and looking like a trip to the playoffs was in the cards.

Now, five straight losses later, Da Bears are 7-8 with injuries galore and nothing much to play for in the season finale against the Vikings. Of course, we have had a lot of injuries (and I was just beginning to like Cutler).

Not much to play for except see how the second and third string can play. I was impressed with the way McGowan played considering last month he was coaching high school football. Then, Bell and Allen put in a very creditable running effort.

Wait Till Next Year. --RoadDog

How's This for Some Soul For You?-- Part 1

From Fessa John Hook's Dancing on the Edge News.

The Fessa took a look at the June 26, 1967, WDAS radio Soul Sounds survey of the Top Thirty Soul Songs in Philadelphia. Of course, the Fessa did it with Beach Songs in Mind.

I am familiar with most of them. Some of them were made more famous by someone else.

1. FUNKY BROADWAY-- Dyke & the Blazers
3. TURN TO STONE-- Four Tops
4. I WAS MADE TO LOVE HER-- Stevie Wonder
5. YOU GAVE ME SOMETHING-- Fantastic Four

6. MAKE ME YOURS-- Betty Swan
7. SOME KINDA WONDERFUL-- Soul Brothers Six
8. I WANNA TESTIFY-- Parliament
9. TRAMP-- Otis & Carla
10. BABY, I LOVE YOU-- Howard Tate

12. GROOVIN'-- Young Rascals
13. RESPECT-- Aretha Franklin
15. HYPNOTIZED-- Linda Jones

More to Come. --RoadDog

HOW'S THAT AGAIN? Kit and caboodle...(The whole thing)

Tuesday, December 27, 2011

Don't Surprise Me None: Worst 2011 Movies

And, if i don't get around to seeing many "Best" Movies, I make up for it in "Worst" Movies. Ones I saw with *.



I liked all four that I saw. I would have seen #6, but it was in 3D. I hate 3D. Hurts My Eyes.

Figures. --RoadDog

Don't Surprise Me None: Best 2011 Movies

From Dec. 18th Chicago Tribune.

I don't know what it is about movie critics, but most of the time, when they say something is bad, it isn't. Also, most of the movies they say are the best are ones I've never heard of.

Their Top Ten:



Of these, I only saw #2 and I did hear of #4, but didn't see it. And, I saw 72 movies at the theater this past year. "Moneyball" was an excellent movie, by the way.

I guess my local theater in Fox Lake, Illinois, doesn't get the others.

Been Seeing the "Wrong" Movies. --RoadDog

HOW'S THAT AGAIN? Jawing/Jawboning...(Talking or arhuing)

Monday, December 26, 2011

A Merry Christmas Here in Illinois


Last minute shopping. So did everybody else. Won't do that again. Lunch at Steak and Shake.

Later, Dawg House, American Legion and Route 12 Bar with Sue and Paul for Christmas spirit.

Fell asleep watching "A Christmas Story" so no presents or egg nog.


Managed to get through "A Christmas Story."

Had huge buffet at the China Buffet in Fox Lake with crab legs, roast beef, four types of shrimp and everything. Forced to return home and take a nap.

Drove around looking at Christmas lights around our old house and neighborhood in Round Lake Beach, Illinois, (none at our old house) and the Bear-Packer game at Sue and Paul's.

Too bad, but that McGowan did well as did Bell and Allen.

Last quarter at Route 12 Bar.

And a Merry, Merry. --RoadDog

HOW'S THAT AGAIN? I reckon...I suppose.

Sunday, December 25, 2011

A Holiday Hootenanny

OK, I wasn't going to blog today (it being Sunday), but got in the mood.

I listened to Bob Stroud's Rock and Roll Roots this morning on Chicago's WDRV, the Drive, where he did his annual Christmas Hootenanny show.

Some of these aren't your same-old, same-old Christmas songs.

These are the ones played the first hour:

SLEIGH RIDE-- Ronettes

JINGLE BELLS-- Booket T. & the MGs

RUN RUDOLPH RUN-- Chuck berry

To see Them All, Go to, click on air and scroll down to Bob Stroud.

Another great Christmas show will be tonight on Chicago's WXRT, 93.1 FM, when Little Steven does his annual show. I guarantee there will be some songs you've never heard before. It streams also.

Lovin' My Christmas Music, But gettin' Tired of It. --ToadDog

HOW'S THAT AGAIN? Hoosegow...A jail.

It's Them, Not Me: A Christmas Gas Gouge

Yesterday, in Fox Lake, Illinois, I noticed that the price of gas had jumped from $3.15 (still a rip-off) to $3.25.

And a Merry Christmas to You Too, GRBS!!

Coal for Youse. --RoadDog

Saturday, December 24, 2011

How's That Nog With Your Egg?/Fascinating Facts About Christmas

What's the "nog" in the egg nog.

Since I won't be posting tomorrow, it being a Sunday and Christmas at the same time, here's a Christmas-related story.

A typical cup of egg nog has 343 calories of all the worst sort of stuff for you, but, it's tradition and good-tasting as well.

This liquid doughnut consists of eggs, sugar, cream, milk, nutmeg and vanilla. The nog is for the liquor you put in it.

We like brandy, but whiskey will do in a pinch. Liz bought our egg nog yesterday. We drink out of glasses we have had since 1973 when we toasted with Liz's parents. Both of them are no longer with us and one of the four glasses broke and was thrown out a long time ago.

So, the two of us will drink out of there glasses, one for her parents.

If you go over to my history blog at http://cootershistorything.blogspot, you can see Ten Fascinating Facts About Christmas.

Figgy Pudding is Actually a Cake. Sugar Plums Are Plums Rolled in Sugar. --RoadDog

It's Them, Not Me: Gas Prices

Just heard that the average American Household spent $4,155 on gas this past year, a cool 8.4% of what they took in.

Gas average $3.50 a gallon for the last year and is expected to do over $4 again this coming spring.

Big Oil likes to use the increase in Third World demand as an excuse, but we all know, it is to get richer.

And then, there are the countries in the Middle East getting unimaginable wealth above and beyond. And how about our good friends to the north and south of us raking in the money as well. Perhaps we should insist Mexico start paying for all their folks here who are receiving services they didn't earn.

And them, there are those states getting rich off oil, and of course that candidate from Texas taking credit for his state's doing well (while double dipping into a state pension).

Man, It's Enough to Make Me Start Drinking. Wait a Minute, I Do That Already. --SadDog

A Music Tip Off

Today, Wendy Rice is going back to 1974 on her Saturday Morning Flashback on Chicago's WXRT. It streams until noon CST. Playing Stevie Wonder's "You Ain't Got Nothing" right now.

I'm also listening to Fessa John Hook doing his Beach Music 1969 four hour show. You can find it at the Cashbox Magazine website. Look up Beach Music. You'll hear songs you know, like "Chokin' Kind" by Joe Simon and ones you don't (unless you grew up around NC or SC like "For the First Time" by Billy Scott & the Georgia Prophets.

Tomorrow, Bob Stroud does his annual Christmas Hootenanny Show on WDRV from 7 to 10 am CST. All sorts of old rockers.

No Breakfast With the Beatles with Terri Hemmert on WXRT, though. She has the day off.

I Know What I'll be Doing. --RoadDog

HOW'S THAT AGAIN? Hold your horses...Be patient.

Friday, December 23, 2011

Not Your Father's Big Mac

From Time Magazine.

McDonald's has announced that it would be adding baguettes to its offerings in France.

here's a look at other region-specific McTreats.

CANADA-- McLobster, a creamy seafood sammy. (I remember seeing McLobster Tolls once in Maine. Sure wish I'd tried one.)

HAWAII-- Spam, Eggs and Rice for breakfast (What would Monty Python say about that?)

FRANCE-- McBaguette, a breadstick served with jam.

SINGAPORE-- McRice Burger with rice cake buns.

JAPAN-- Ebi Filet-O, a shrimp burger.


These last two are from me.

NEW ZEALAND-- McKiwi Burger with beets and hard-boiled egg slices.

AUSTRALIA-- You can also get vegemite as a condiment.

When I travel to other countries, I always check out the local McDonald's to see what they have. I would never, however, order a Big Mac or something I can get here in the US (well, unless maybe it was a McRib.)

Well, I Can Afford a McDouble. --RoadDog

HOW'S THAT AGAIN? Fearher in your cap...To accomplish a goal. Indian warriors receive a feather for defeating an enemy.

Thursday, December 22, 2011

Another Day, Another Dollar-- Part II: What We're Not Spending Money On

VETERINARY AND PET SERVICES -6% (I don't know about this. Some of our friends are spending real big bucks on operations on their pets.

CLOTHING AND REPAIR ALTERATION -19% (For the most part, it is just cheaper to buy new stuff.)

POSTAL AND DELIVERY SERVICES -28%-- (Is that why the post office is having problems?)

DENTAL SERVICES -4%-- (Not life threatening, put it off)

CASINO GAMBLING -11%-- (Other than the GRBs, who has money to throw away. Plus, how about bringing back the $1 and $2 tables.)

PLEASURE BOATS -12%-- (Not to mention the price of gas on the water. Something that can easily be given up.)

NEW AUTOS -12%-- (Sticker shock!)

NURSERY SCHOOLS -5%-- (Hard to believe this is dropping. Where those kids going?)

TOBACCO -16%-- (Folks quitting I guess.)


FOREIGN TRAVEL BY US RESIDENTS -4%-- (Not surprising with sorry state of US dollar.)

MUSEUMS AND LIBRARIES -9%-- (I'm surprised by this one.)

I Also Have Cut Way Down on All Sorts of Travel. --RoadDog

HOW'S THAT AGAIN? Dicker: To bargain or trade.

Wednesday, December 21, 2011

Another Day, Another Dollar-- Part 1

From the Aug. 15th Time Magazine.

In these days where I get great joy looking at how much interest my CDs are earning, here's a look back at what Time calls six months before the official beginning of the Great Recession, 2007, as they're calling it. Unemployment was 4.6% and Americans were saving less than 2%. Today, people are saving 5.4%.

Of course, this is before the GRBs had their way with us.


Higher education-- 6% (Not surprising with the ever-increasing tuition.)
Movie theaters-- 12%
Watches-- 13% (I'm surprised at this. Fewer and fewer folks have watches, instead using their cell phones.)

Used autos-- 4% (Used cars, however, are getting much more expensive.)
Cell-Phone services-- 31% (Big surprise here.)
Lotteries-- 16% (You just never know.)
Physician services-- 7% (I'm surprised this is so low.)

Alcohol-- 5% (Not surprising as the price of booze keeps going up, plus you can always drink to forget.)

Foreign Travel in the US-- 17% (Lots of folks from overseas are sure taking advantage of our worthless money. keep those printing presses rolling!)

What Are We Spending Less On, Next. --RoadDog

HOW'S THAT AGAIN: Catawampus...Something that sits crooked.

Tuesday, December 20, 2011

Eleven Terrible TV Parents

From the Dec. 16th Listverse.

I found this to be very interesting, especially since I watch all of them except two. Other than #10 and the two I haven't seen, #7 and #1, I have to agree with the person who compiled the list.

11. RED FOREMAN-- That 70s Show

10. HANK HILL-- King of the Hill. He is mainly just disappointed with his son not being more like him.

9. LOIS-- Malcolm in the Middle-- (And her husband wasn't much better.)

8. FRANK AND MARIE BARONE-- Everybody Loves Raymond

7. ROCHELLE-- Everybody Hates Chris

6. EVELYN HARPER-- Two and a Half Men

5. DON AND BETTY DRAPER-- Mad Men-- (But a lot of it just has to do with the way parents were in the 50s and early 60s.)

4. PETER AND LOIS GRIFFIN-- Family Guy (This would be my choice for worst. What both, but especially Peter to his daughter is really mean.)

3. HOMER SIMPSON-- The Simpsons (Other than often choking Bart, a lot of this is Homer's preoccupation with himself.)

2. AL AND PEGGY BUNDY-- Married With Children-- (They're also mean to each other.)

1. JON AND KATE GOSSELIN-- Jon and Kate Plus 8 (I don't watch reality shows.)

And, remember, List Universe also has photos and explanations.

I Sure Enjoyed This One. --RoadDoh

HOW'S THAT AGAIN? Calaboose...a jail.

Monday, December 19, 2011

Bars...Not Saying We Hang Out In...But At Least the Beer Didn't Get Warm

Friday it was Donovan's Reef in Twin Lakes for NTN. ($1.50 pints)

Saturday, it was Captain's Quarters in Antioch for a Christmas party. Since we are big-time customers (and live next to the manager) we were invited. A whole lot colder than this summer. (Free food, free drinks, Cover Story band and a DJ)

It was so crowded, we had to sit out at the outside bar (Which was enclosed for the winter, but still cold. At least the beer bottles didn't get cold.)

Sunday, it was Fire Wood in McHenry for Da Bears ($6 pitchers and $4 sandwiches) and then to the Twisted Moose in McHenry ($1 drafts, $2.50 brats) to drink our Bear sorrows away.

Later today, it's to J's in Ingleside ($1.25 pints and half-price pizzas) for NTN. Last Monday, we had the best BLT pizza ever.

Too Many Bars, Too Little Time. --RoadDog

JSS: Snow-- Bears-- Popeye's

JSS-- Just Some Stuff.

1. SNOW-- We got our first real snow of the season, about an inch, Friday night, after everyone was going around boasting that we hadn't had any yet. Guess we opened our mouths too soon.

Guess I'll have to go out and fire up the old snow blower. Sure hope it starts.

2. BEARS-- Another horrible game yesterday, crushing our hopes after a 14-7 lead at half. The Seahawks sure took advantage of three intercepted passes to score three TDs. That's 21 points when the Bears lost 38-14.

Playoff hopes are gone, but have to win the Christmas Day game against you-know-who. That will make the season a success.

3. POPEYE'S-- Friday, we drove to Lake Geneva and had the most-excellent fish fry at Popeye's overlooking the Riviera Docks and Geneva Lake. For December, they dropped the price from $12,49 to $9.99. Real fine fried and broiled fish as well as coleslaw (w/pineapple and beans) and some of the best potato pancakes ever.

Never Get a Two-Stage Snow blower. I Hate Mixing the Oil with the Gas. --RoadDog

Where Were You August 19, 1965?-- Part 2

11. TAKE ME BACK-- Little Anthony & the Imperials
12. ALL I REALLY WANT TO DO-- Cher-- Doing an old Byrds song.
13. PRETTY LITTLE BABY-- Marvin Gaye
14. JU JU JAND-- Dion
15. YES, I'M READY-- Barbar Acklin

16. I WANT CANDY-- Strangeloves-- One of the best-ever garage rock/frat rock songs ever!
17. SAVE YOUR HEAR FOR ME-- Gary Lewis & the Playboys-- Daddy would be so proud.
18. (Couldn't read this one)
19. I LIKE IT LIKE THAT-- Dave Clark 5-- Glad they finally got their rightful place in the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame.
20. LOOKING THROUGH THE EYES OF LOVE-- Gene Pitney-- Loved his songs.

Good Stuff, Maynard

HOW'S THAT AGAIN? Blinky...Between sweet and sour as in milk. (never heard of it.)

Saturday, December 17, 2011

Where Were You August 19, 1965?-- Part 1

I was a mere 14-year-old, just having graduated junior high and getting ready to go to Fremd High School in Palatine, Illinois.

This Top Twenty songs comes from WAIR 1340 AM radio out of Winston-Salem, North Carolina. I found this on Fessa John Hook's Beach Music Site.

1. I GOT YOU BABE-- Sonny and Cher-- Way before anyone ever thought of a "Groundhog Day" movie.
2. IT'S THE SAME OLD SONG-- Four Tops-- Some great Motown.
3. PAPA'S GOT A BRAND NEW BAG-- James Brown-- The first time I'd ever heard of him.
4. I'LL ALWAYS LOVE YOU-- Spinners
5. HELP-- Beatles-- Wouldn't be a 1965 chart without a Beatles song on it.

6. UNCHAINED MELODY-- Righteous Brothers-- Way before anybody ever thought of a "Ghost" movie.
7. DOWN IN THE BOONDOCKS-- Billy Joe Royal-- This song and "I Got You Babe" always remind me of my graduation trip from 8th grade that my parents gave me that summer. I went on a week-long fishing trip to Canada. These songs played over and over and over.
8. NOTHING BUT HEARTACHES-- Supremes-- Some more great Motown
9. BABY, I'M YOURS-- Barbara Lewis
10. CALIFORNIA GIRLS-- Beach Boys-- What about those Illinois girls? OK, Midwest farmers' daughters.

Good Stuff. Ten More to Come. --RoadDog

Me and Technology

From the Dec. 7th Chicago Tribune.


FRAME ONE: Dustin, an unemployed, live-at-home, college grad and his dad are sitting at the table. Dustin is sitting at his laptop looking smug. His dad is reading a newspaper.

Dustin: "Admit it Dad...There are lots of things I get with the internet that don't come with the newspaper."

Dad: "Okay...I admit it."

FRAME TWO: Dad: "But who wants viruses." Dustin sits there looking a bit sheepish.

Hey, One for My Side!! --RoadDog

Goodbye Creepy Burger King

Burger King has scrapped its creepy-looking plastic king. Good, he creeped me out. They could make a great horror show using his likeness.

he was the symbol of the hamburger fast-food restaurant since 2004.

According to Time Magazine, he joins some other dropped "mascots in that great greasy restaurant in the sky."

Do you remember these:

McDonald's Hamburglar

Arby's Oven Mitt (that was just plain dumb)

Quiznos Spongemonkey (I don't remember this one, but Quiznos is fairly new to our area.)

Domino's Noid (I liked this one.)

Taco Bell Chilhuahua (I'd really love to see come back. I really liked the one where he was going to catch Godzilla in a little box and after seeing the monster said, "I think I'm going to need a bigger box" with that great accent.

OK, so it wasn't for a restaurant, but I also liked the Frito Bandito.

Guess These Last Two Aren't Very PC These Days. --RoadDog

HOW'S THAT AGAIN? Between hay and grass...Not a child or an adult. Could it be a "Tween?

Friday, December 16, 2011

Chicago's Northwest Suburbs: CheezBorgers and Old Times

Yesterday, Liz and I drove to Palatine and Arlington Hts. as a trip back into our past.

We drove Fairfield Road south to Old McHenry Road and then to Quentin Road to US-12. We drove this road many times to Liz's parents when we live in Round Lake Beach. We stopped at Save-A-Pet Animal Shelter on the way to make a donation.

I never go to Arlington Heights that I don't make a stop at Half-Price Books in Palatine. Visited Liz's parents at the cemetery in Arlington Hts and then to the old Randhurst Shopping Mall, which has a new configuration.

Ate at Billy Goat Tavern at Randhurst Village as it is now called. I've always wanted to try a "cheezborger and cheeps, no fries, Coke, no Pepsi" but it is not likely I'll get to Chicago to go to the original what with Chicago's present rip-off all tourists program.

Walked around Carson Pirie Scott store, which was one of the origina; big three occupants of Randhurst.

Then drove to Palatine and ate at Photos, on the site of the old Burger King where I worked in high school and part of college. Before that, drove around Winston Park and looked at our old homes and those of friends.

Nice Trip back to the Past. --RoadDog

HOW'S THAT AGAIN? Been through the mill...Had a rough time of it. Grain used to be ground up in the mills.

Thursday, December 15, 2011

Going Back to My Past Last Night

This past Friday, I was reading the Lake County Journal here in northeast Illinois and came across an article about the president of the Round Lake Area Library Board retiring after 35 years of being on the board.

I was also on the board and a former president of it, and knew Linda and her husband Lisle very well. He recently retired as reverend of the local Presbyterian Church. He had once taken me up in his plane and over the years, we had been at many weddings. He officiated and I deejayed.

Linda was retiring because they will be spending several months a year in their paradise, Hawaii.

The board was having a special session thanking her for all those years of service on Wednesday night. I figured to go myself and congratulate her, plus her husband and other people I knew might be there as well.

Barb, the former library director when i was on the board, was also there. I had a nice talk with Linda's husband, Lisle. Their son, Lisle Jr, is in the Ukraine right now, teaching and is a Fulbright Scholar. He has a PhD. I taught him way back in 7th grade and am quite proud of him.

Nothing Like Meeting Old Friends Again. --RoadDog

Liz and My 44th Anniversary

No, not our wedding anniversary, but the one where we started "going Steady" back in high school when I gave her my ID bracelet (we were juniors at Palatine High School in Palatine, Illinois, and didn't get our class rings until the end of junior year).

We had met back in October at a party. Her parents were moving to Palatine from Chicago, where she had attended Madonna High School. They were living in a rental home until their new one could be constructed in Winston Park.

I gave her the ID bracelet while she was doing her family's laundry at a laundromat at Palatine Plaza.

The place is no longer there, but we have an idea where it was a few store fronts east of what used to be Pankau Drugs. We'll be looking for it.

We will be going back to the scene of the crime...oops, great event, today.

How's That for Being Romantic. An ID Bracelet in a Laundromat. Can't Help But Think of That Old Song, "Leader of the Laundromat." Who's That Banging on the Piano? I Don't Know. --RoadDog

Axed TV for 2011-- Part 2

Again, there were over 80 shows cancelled for one reason or another. These were just the ones I liked.

LAW & ORDER: CRIMINAL INTENT: USA-- I always thought a show with Gorham, Monk and Columbo as the cops would have the criminals going nuts.

LAW & ORDER: LA-- This show was getting better after a poor start.

MAD LOVE-- CBS-- Loved the best buddy and best girlfriend.

MEMPHIS BEAT-- TNT-- Blues Music and some great characters.

MEN OF A CERTAIN AGE-- TNT-- Since I am on the older side of these guys, I can relate. I was really a big fan of these last two shows on TNT.

OUTSOURCED-- NBC-- One of the funniest shows with an interesting slant on culture. Instead of a foreigner getting used to American culture, it was the other way around.

PRIME SUSPECT-- NBC-- Much too soon to yank the plug.

"S#! MY DAD SAYS-- CBS-- Of course, Shatner was great, but I really liked the married son and his wife.

Note to TV Execs Trying to Get Good Shows for Their Lineup. These Be Them. --RoadDog

HOW'S THAT AGAIN? Bee in your bonnet...To have an idea that won't let loose.

V-- ABC-- I like my sci-fi. Boy was the alien leader a mean one.

Wednesday, December 14, 2011

Things in Nature That Just Aren't Right

From the Dec. 11th Chicago Tribune SMACK! on Sports Page, Main Event.

Always pretty funny. They divided the Things in Nature That Just Aren't Right into two categories: non-sports related and sports-related. Pictures accompanied each item.


Blago's hair, platypus, Jim Belushi (hey,I like the guy) and Great Salt Lake.


Joakim Noah's shot, Adam Dunn's swing (I wonder how much he earned for each strike out in 2011), Charles Barkley's golf swing and Tim Tebow's pass.

We can add, Chicago Bear coaching staff play-calling after Sunday's game.

Ya Just Gotta Wonder. --RoadDog

Axed TV for 2011-- Part 1

From the Yahoo! TV Blog by Brian Waters.

Over 80 TV shows got the axe in 2011. I had never watched most of them, thankfully, as I always hate when a favorite of mine goes into the vast deadland.

These are my favorite no longer-with-us shows and some comments.

BETTER WITH YOU, ABC-- The comparisons between the three couples was hilarious. I especially liked the parents.

CHASE, NBC-- Just good old drama and action and one really tough gal.

DEFENDERS. CBS-- Love that Jim Belushi and the Chicago connection.

DETROIT 1-8-7, ABC-- One superb cop drama. Setting it in inner city Detroit was a great move. In the opening episode, two detectives went out to a bridge to find a spent bullet for a case. They found what seemed to be about ten. That pretty well summed it up. This and the next show are the two that I will miss the most.

FRIDAY NIGHT LIGHTS, NBC-- Definitely "Don't Miss TV for Me." Since we don't have Direct TV, I couldn't wait to see the new episodes.

GLORY DAZE, TBS-- OK, I am an Unreconstructed Frat Rat.

More to Come. --RoadDog

HOW'S THAT AGAIN? Barking up the wrong tree...talking about something that was completely the wrong issue with the wrong person. (A hunting term when the hounds bark at the base of a tree and the animal isn't there.)

Tuesday, December 13, 2011

A Good Time Over the Weekend (Other Than the Bears)

FRIDAY, the 9th

Helped serve the annual Christmas dinner to the North Chicago VA Hospital folks at the Fox Lake American Legion in the afternoon.

Met the usual suspects at the Route 12 Bar

SATURDAY, the 10th

Saw my favorite Christmas movie, "A Christmas Story" on the big screen at the Woodstock, Illinois, Theatre for $1. An almost full theatre, about half and half kids and adults. Adults did more laughing than kids.

Then a McRib at the local McDonald's.

Lastly, the annual Army-Navy football party at the Fox Lake American Legion. I was pulling for Army to win after nine straight losses, but it was not to be. Obama there for first time. Must be coming up on election time.

SUNDAY, the 11th

Christmas party at Captain's Quarters. First half of Bears game. Route 12 Bar and second half. Overtime at friends' house.

Other Than Da Bears, Da Good. --RoadDog

HOW'S THAT AGAIN: Barking at a knot...meaning that your efforts were as useless as a dog barking at a knot on a tree.

Tebow Didn't Beat the Bears; the Bears Beat the Bears

Still overly disgusted with that Bronco-Bear game Sunday. And even more disgusted with any idea that Tim Tebow beat the Bears. He had help from the other sideline and on the field. The Bears beat the Bears.

Until the 4th quarter, the Bears defense completely had the Denver qb under control. Then, it all fell apart.

All the Bears were doing was trying to prevent any big plays. That Denver TD drive was nothing but 6-8 yard passes to WIDE OPEN RECEIVERS. Each time, there was no Chicago player anywhere around. Great call there, Tice.

Then, there was Martz calling the offense. Everyone in the stadium, everyone watching at home and in bars, and worse, everyone on the Denver sideline knew exactly what the plays would be, hand-off to Barber and a resulting two straight three and outs.

Now, Mr. Martz, I am not a super knowledgeable football coach, but everyone knows that you absolutely do not want the other team to know what plays you're going to run. That never works. A pass every so often was definitely called for.

Then, there was bonehead play by Barber who should know not to run out of bounds. And to top it off, he allowed himself to have the ball stripped out of his hands when the Bears had a great opportunity for a field goal and win in overtime.

As punishment, time to cut your hair.

So, a 10-0 lead with three minutes left became a 10-10 tie and a loss in overtime 13-10.

Sad, Sad, Sad. --RoadDog

Monday, December 12, 2011

Friendliest Confines: Epstein's or Wrigley's

From the Dec, 8th Chicago Tribune Sports Section.

Well, new Cubbie General manager just bought a $3.25 million Lakeview home near his job at Wrigley Field in Chicago. The SMACK! column ran a comparison between Theo Epstein's digs and his word digs.

First Epstein's new house, second Wrigley Field.

NOTABLE DIMENSIONS: 7,800 sq. feet / 400 feet to center field


REPAIRS REQUIRED: Minimal / more than $200 million

STATUES: 0 / 4




FACADE: Hand-craved limestone / big red message board

FLOORING: herringbone-design wood/ Kentucky bluegrass and rye

Pretty Funny. --RoadDog

HOW'S THAT AGAIN? Bad Egg...Someone who is not a good person.

Saturday, December 10, 2011

Just Some Interesting Stuff: Looking for That Perfect Baby Name

From the Dec. 1st USA Today "What's in a name choice? Major pressure" by Sharon Jayson.

Whatever happened to the golden oldies like Mike, Tom, Don? Or, how about that little old band with John, Paul George and, well, Ringo?

These are most popular ten names according to


10. Logan
9. Lucas
8. Noah
7. Ethan
6. Jayden

5. Jacob
4. Liam
3. Mason
2. Jackson
1. Alden


10. Abigail
9. Emily
8. Madison
7. Chloe
6. Lily

5. Ava
4. Olivia
3. Isabella
2. Emma
1. Sophia

Hit Me With That Name Again. --RoadDog

HOW'S THAT AGAIN? At Sea...Lost or Not Understanding something.

It's Them, Not Me: On Corporate Sponsorship

Is it me, or is that getting a bit too much. So many things now have the name of some corporation attached to them like Chicago's All State Arena or the Old Comiskey Park (still won't use that one).

From the Barney & Clyde comic strip in the August 7th Chicago Tribune.

FRAME 1: Either Barney or Clyde (this is a new strip to me, is in his easy chair watching a baseball game on TV. The announcers says, "It's a beautiful day for baseball at Coors Field."

FRAME 2: "The Rockies are up 3-1 according to the Mitsubishi scoreboard." "Pitcher goes into his Rolex windup..."

FRAME 3: "Tulowitzki lifts a Jell-O pudding pop fly to second base. Clyde looking perplexed, "Okay, I'm a committed capitalist..."

FRAME 4: Announcer, "And it's caught for the third out of the Red Roof Inn-ing." Clyde, "But this is getting a little out of hand."

My feelings exactly.

Na Na Hey Hey. --RoadDog

Me and Technology

Not that I am completely ignorant of new technology, but practically so. Obviously, with these blogs, I must know a little something about it. I know what I know, and that "ain't" much.

I can't help but laugh in some of the comics when this awkward, backward technology comes full fore. One great comic strip I like is "Pickles" about an elderly couple, your grandparents type. I have really come to relate to the old codger of the pair, Earl.

From the Aug. 7th Chicago Tribune.

FRAME 1: Earl's wife Opal is dusting. Grandson Nelson asks, "Gramma, where's Grampa?" Opal replies, "He's on the computer trying to figure out how to send an e-mail."

FRAME 2: Nelson, "Old people aren't very good at computers, are they?"

FRAME 3: Opal, "Well, we didn't grow up with them like your generation, Nelson."

FRAME 4: Still Dusting, Opal says, "Some of us are pretty god at learning computer skills."

FRAME 5: They are now in the computer room where Earl is at the computer, an old pc unit like I use. Earl has a look of exasperation and says, "Oh, shoot! I think I just deleted the whole darn internet."

FRAME 6: Opal and Nelson walking away, and Opal says, "Others of us, not so much."

This would explain why Liz can do so much on a computer and I can't.

Well, That's My Excuse, Anyway. --RoadDog

HOW"S THAT AGAIN? One bad apple spoils the whole barrel...One corrupt or bad person can cause all others to go bad if you don't remove the bad one.

Friday, December 9, 2011

A Shock at Virginia Tech

Sitting in Donovan's Reef yesterday, I was shocked to see news of shootings at Virginia Tech again. Four years ago they had the 30+ murders. And now, again, deaths at the college.

Not much was known at the time, but now, apparently, a university cop made a traffic stop. Someone else ran up and killed him then killed themselves. It was not another mass-slaying.

This hits home for me especially because of the Valentine's Day murders at my old school, Northern Illinois University in Dekalb, where five students were killed.

Murders on campus were something that never entered my mind when I was at college. And, I went through the Kent State Riots and anti-war movement.

Northern has since had a shooting and two murders on different occasions.

Not the Same World. --RoadDog

A McRib Reprieve

Was I ever happy to espy a sign on the McDonald's at Wis-50 and I-94, by the world famous Brat Stop, that said McRibs. I like to scared Liz to death as my very quick turn in to the place. This was while returning home from Thanksgiving in North Carolina.

This is definitely a pleasant surprise to sink my teeth once again into that absolutely wonderful tasting treat. I thought they were gone for another year back in November.

I wrote about it on the Fun on the Fox website and a couple replies came in saying McRibs were also available at some other McDonald's in the area.

I called the Fox Lake McD's and they said they had them, so I had another one this past Wednesday.

Can You see My Smile Right Now? --RoadDog

Top Country Radio Play for the Past Decade

One part of Monday's Academy of Country Music awards I really liked was their list of the Top Ten country acts in radio play over the past ten years. I'd heard of all of them and have many, many of their albums.

10. Keith Urban
9. Brad Paisley
8. Garth Brooks
7. Rascal Flays
6. Brooks & Dunn

5. Alan Jackson
4. George Strait
3. Kenny Chesney
2. Tim McGraw

1. Toby Keith-- My Man!!

By the way, the ACM Entertainer of the Year was Jason Aldean.

Good Sing', Guys. --RoadDog

"Buffalo Soldier"

Listening to Chicago's WXRT right now, at 8:07 am, and Lin Braemer is playing Bob Marley's "Buffalo Soldier," one of my favorite songs of all time...and one of historical significance referring to black soldiers serving out west in the US Army after the Civil War.

I used to use the instrumental part of it (on side two of the 45) to introduce myself when I was deejaying.

"Dreadlocks, Rasta" Baby. --RoadDog

Movie Scratches: Heist-- Edgar-- Dawn-- Jack

Movie Scratches: A Dog's Eye View of Current Movies.

65. TOWER HEIST-- 11-9-- FOX LAKE $4-- A truly motley crew of break-in guys. Whatever you do, don't drop the Ferrari.

66. J. EDGAR-- 11-14-- FOX LAKE FREE-- A very complicated guy. DiCaprio should get a nomination for this one.

67. TWILIGHT: BREAKING DAWN-- 11-27-- GOLDSBORO, NC $6-- Marrying a vampire can be really dangerous to your health.

68. JACK AND JILL-- 12-7-- FOX LAKE $4-- Much funnier than I thought. Who'd have thought Al Pacino. I'd buy his coffee.

So, I've Seen 68 Movies So Far This Year. --RoadDog

HOW'S THAT AGAIN? AN AXE TO GRIND-- Someone who has a hidden motive.

Thursday, December 8, 2011

It's Them, Not Me: The Smirk's Gone

Is that what it takes to get that smirk off disgraced Illinois Governor Blago's face and to get the swagger out of his walk. Put him in jail for 14 years.

The Blago we saw the last several days was nothing like the cocky one that we've seen ever since he was arrested all those years ago. Then he proceeded to further embarrass the state with the circus he created about it.

How he was found innocent in the first trial because the one woman would vote to convict is highly suspicious.

He finally gets his just dessert.

Let's hope to get on with our state and forget this ugly chapter.

At least, I smugly admit, I NEVER Voted for the guy. I may not be proud of other folks I voted for, but at least not with him.

Bye, Bye Blago. Justice is Finally Done. --RoadDog

Academy of Country Music Awards 2011: "When Alabama Gets the Bomb"

Quote from Tom Lehrer's "Who's Next" from the album That Was the Year That Was.

Monday night I watched the 2011 Academy of Country Music Awards Show on Fox. Well. actually, I recorded it on the old VHS and then watched it at 10 pm. By jumping over commercials and parts of performances, I was able to see the whole show in one hour (instead of the two).

I was glad to see the band Alabama get an award. Also happy to see they're coming back after that forever goodbye tour they had a few years ago. Judging from their facial hair, perhaps we should change their name to the "Graybeards." The three front men are still with the band. I didn't get a look at the drummer, so am not sure he is back.

I have all of Alabama's albums and on into their CD era. I liked them right out of the gate. As an Alabama bonus, we used to go to Myrtle Beach, South Carolina, every year and often spent a night drinking ice cold beer, staring in amazement at how many mugs of beer the waiters could carry in one hand, and doing the hand signals to order at the wonderful old roadhouse, excuse me, boardwalk/beach house, The Bowery.

If you want some real fine country music, this is the place to go. This is where Alabama learned their chops, much like the Beatles did in Hamburg and Liverpool. The house bands play for free and depend on tips to get by. Plus, they play every night except Sunday.

There are pictures of Alabama when they were performing at The Bowery.

Love That Alabama. --RoadDog

HOW'S THAT AGAIN? Have you ever wondered what some sayings, especially by older folk, mean?

A BONE TO PICK (someone who wants to discuss a disagreement)

Wednesday, December 7, 2011

Seventy Years Ago Today, Pearl Harbor

An event that plunged the United States into World War II, although it was obvious by preparations that it was just a matter of time before that happened.

Along with the Alamo, this battle is one of the non-Civil War battles that I am most interested in and have several books devoted to it. I have been doing blog entries on it ever since I started, especially in my history one.

Back when I was teaching, I would at least mention it to classes in my earlier years before it became a one-day lesson and eventually a three-day one. One year, I even had a Pearl Harbor Survivor come in and give a talk. And, these lessons were considering that I did not teach that era.

I put up my three US flags once we had daylight today.

Today, every one of my blogs will be about the event, even my Civil War one.

And then there was another sneak attack that happened ten years ago.

I'll Not Forget It.

Tuesday, December 6, 2011

"Na Na" #1 This Date 1969

The number one song in the nation this date, 42 years ago, was "Na Na Hey Hey Kiss Him Goodbye" by a group called Steam.

The c-writer of the song, Paul Leka, recently died on October 12th. I wrote about him in my history blog on December 1st.

There was not a band called Steam when it was released, just Mr. Leka and his writing partner. The "Na Na Hey Hey" was added to extend the song so it wouldn't be played on radio because it was too long. It was the "B" side and they wanted the "A" side played.


As Dear Old Andy the Clown Would Say, "G-o-o-o-o-o You W-h-i-t-e S-o-x!!!" RoadDog

Congrats to Ron Santo

Yesterday was great news for the family and fans of former Chicago Cub third baseman Ron Santo who FINALLY got his much deserved spot at the Baseball Hall of Fame in Cooperstown, New York.

Too bad they couldn't have done it while he was still alive as he died just over a year ago.

A player with stats like his should have gone in soon after retirement. And then, he was a Cubs announcer for twenty years.

Talk about a man who bled Cub blue. And I am a White Sox fan. He did play for DaSox his last year, though.

I'll never forget the time he gave a young high school kid, me, a ride home from Fremd High School in Palatine and THEN came in for coffee with my parents. What a guy!!

Way to Go No. 10!! --RoadDog

Not Forgetting Tomorrow, 70 Years Ago

That would be Pearl Harbor and the 70th anniversary of that event that finally got the US into World War II even though we had been preparing for it many years in advance.

I'll be putting my US flags out, hoping others do as well.

I am writing nothing but Pearl Harbor on my history blog:

Sad to see all the Pearl Harbor Survivors Association chapters shutting down as their memberships fall to zero. But an 18-year-old sailor there would now be 88.

Same for all the rest of the Greatest Generation.

Not Forgetting.

Monday, December 5, 2011

Killed a Keg, But Bears Lost Anyway

Yesterday, we had our annual Bears football game party with about 45 in attendance. We killed a full half barrel by the end of the game, or what was called a game. It was pretty pathetic. The Bears effort against KC surely does not bode well for any playoff hopes.

We even didn't have much "juice," my special concoction where shot glasses are downed for every Bear TD (there were none) and qb sack (we had a few). Plus, we did several rally shots. Even the infamous "Rally Rat" couldn't get the boys going.

Folks were really crowded along the bar, "Margaritaville," the bar area as well as the pit and "skyboxes" in the "North Woods" to watch the game. There was another group upstairs at "Key North" watching as well.

Many stuck around for the Packer-Giant game which was everything the Bear game wasn't. The Packers won on a field goal as time expired.

Of course, we had our usual "Name That Tune" contest and later listened to the "Animal House" soundtrack.

If You Can't Win, At Least have a Good Time. --RoadDog

Saturday, December 3, 2011

Hey Chicago Tribune...It WAS a BIG Game

I'm running a bit behind in my newspaper reading since I got back from North Carolina Thursday, but I just read Friday's Sports Section.

I was more than a bit surprised that there WAS NO ARTICLE on Northern Illinois' Mid-American Conference Championship game later that night. Hey, I realize we are not one of the Big Guys, but even then, there are a lot of NIU grads living in your service area.

At least you did send someone to cover the game in today's paper, but that was PAGE THREE!!

At least the Daily Herald had a front page article on Northern's linebacker Pat Schiller in their Friday paper.

Ya Done Been Scooped. --RoadDog

The Rest of 1970

Well, since I listed most of all the songs Wendy Rice played, I might as well do the last six.

You can hear her Saturday Morning Flashback Shows every Saturday morning from 8 to noon CST on Chicago's WXRT FM, 93.1, and it streams.

BIG YELLOW TAXI-- Joni Mitchell
SPIRIT IN THE SKY-- Norman Greenbaum

THE LETTER-- Joe Cocker

Great Year. --RoadDog

NIU Huskies Going Bowling

It's a good thing we've got over a month to recover now, but Northern Illinois' Huskies will be going south to the Go Daddy Bowl in Mobile, Alabama, January 8th. It looks like we'll be playing Arkansas State.

This comes about after last night's come-from-behind 23-20 victory in the Mid-American Conference's Championship team over the University of Ohio.

As a matter of fact, the Huskies have been winning about as ugly as you can the last several games and this was no different. There was no offense in the first half and a so-so defense, even so, we were down just 20-0 at half time.

The second half didn't start too well either. But then Northern finally scored. A second TD had a missed PAT to make it 20-13. A drive with about five minutes left resulted in a tie score 20-20. The defense held and Northern drove down the field and had a field goal as time expired for a Northern victory.

We watched the game at the new Route 12 Bar and Grill on US-12 in Fox Lake, Illinois. The owners were nice enough to put the game on several TVs and keep the sound up. The majority of the patrons could have cared less, but, believe me, when the Huskies won at the end, they got a spirited rendition of the Huskie Fight Song.

The owner said next year he would be willing to make the bar Huskie Football Headquarters.

At age 60, my heart doesn't need these kinds of games.

So, now, Liz and I will be making plans to go to Mobile in a month. Warmer weather and the Gulf Coast beckons.

Go Huskies!! --RoadDog

WXRT's Flashback to 1970-- Part 2

I've been writing down the songs as they play, but the website also has them. There is just shy of thirty minutes left right now and the station, WXRT does stream.

BOX OF RAIN-- Grateful Dead
CARAVAN-- Van Morrison
ANGEL-- Jimi Hendrix

LOLA-- Kinks
LET IT RAIN-- Eric Clapton

BEWARE OF DARKNESS-- George Harrison
SOUTHERN MAN-- Neil Young-- Remember what Lynyrd said to you.
WAR-- Edwin Starr
ALL RIGHT NOW-- Free-- One of my all-time favorites.

MAYBE I'M AMAZED-- Paul McCartney & Wings
GALLOWS POLE-- Led Zeppelin
OYE COMO VA-- Santana
NO MATTER WHAT-- Badfinger
THEM CHANGES-- Buddy Miles

The Tempts Would be So Proud, Al. --RoadDog

You Never Know What Might be Followin' You in a Jungle. --RoadDog

WXRT"S Flashback to 1970-- Part 1

Since 8 am, I have been listening to Wendy Rice's Saturday Morning Flashback to the year 1970, one of my good old college days. I was at Northern Illinois at the time and had joined Delta Sigma Phi Fraternity.

Lots of memories in these songs.

HAVE YOU EVER SEEN THE RAIN-- CCR-- I was voting in the animal rescue site and the security numbers and letters was ccr3x. Liked the first three letters.
MIDNIGHT RIDER-- Allman Brothers
LAKE SHORE DRIVE-- Alliota, Haynes & Jeremiah

IF NOT FOR YOU-- Bob Dylan
VENUS-- Shocking Blue

BELL BOTTOM BLUES-- Derek & the Dominos
WHERE DO THE CHILDREN PLAY-- Cat Stevens-- From his Tea for the Tillerman album. I played the grooves out on this one.
GET BACK-- Beatles
ARE YOU READY-- Pacific Gas & Electric

Were They Saying "I'm Your Venus" Or Something Else? --RoadDoh

A DOG IS BETTER THAN A KID BECAUSE it doesn't ask for money all the time.

Friday, December 2, 2011

Just Got Back

Yesterday, I flew out of Raleigh-Durham Airport to Atlanta's Hartsfield then on to Milwaukee where Liz picked me up.

I had been visiting family in Goldsboro, NC, since Nov. 21st for Thanksgiving. Stayed at my mom's. My brother and his wife live next door, a good thing because Mom is 81.

My sister, her two kids and grandchild also visited. We got to visit with my cousin and his wife several times in Wayne Memorial Hospital.

Always good to visit with family as well as getting home.

Preparing for our big Bears party Sunday.

Too Much Fun. --RoadDog


The Supreme Court has ruled that there will be no Nativity Scene in the nation's capital this year. This is not for any religious reason. They can't find any Wise Men and have about given up finding a Virgin.

Thursday, December 1, 2011

Number One Songs This Date, December 1st-- Part 2

1968 LOVE CHILD-- Diana Ross & the Supremes

1966 WINCHESTER CATHEDRAL-- New Vaudeville Band
1965 TURN! TURN! TURN!-- Byrds
1964 RINGO-- Lorne Green
1963 DOMINIQUE-- The Singing Nun

1962 BIG GIRLS DON'T CRY-- Four Seasons
1961 BIG BAD JOHN-- Jimmy Dean

1951 COLD, COLD HEART-- Tony Bennett

1921 SAY IT WITH MUSIC-- Pail Whiteman
1911 LET ME CALL YOU SWEETHEART-- Columbia Male Quartet

Good Stuff Maynard. --RoadDog

Number One Songs This Date, December 1st-- Part 1

As usual, big thanks to Josh Hosler for making this list available.

2011 WE FOUND LOVE-- Rihanna
2001 FAMILY AFFAIR-- Mary K. Blige
1991 BLACK OR WHITE-- Michael Jackson
1980 LADY-- Kenny Rogers

1979 NO MORE TEARS (ENOUGH IS ENOUGH)-- Barbra Streisand & Donna Summer
1978 YOU DON'T BRING ME FLOWERS-- Barbra Streisand & Neil Diamond
1977 YOU LIGHT UP MY LIFE-- Debby Boone

1975 FLY, ROBIN, FLY-- Silver Connection
1974 KUNG FU FIGHTING-- Carl Douglas
1973 TOP OF THE WORLD-- Carpenters

1972 PAPA WAS A ROLLIN STONE-- Temptations
1971 FAMILY AFFAIR-- Sly & the Family Stone
1970 I THINK I LOVE YOU-- Partridge Family

Sixties and Earlier Up Next. --RoadDog


Tuesday, November 29, 2011

Megapolitan: A New Geography

From the Nov. 29th USA Today by Haya El Nasser,

I have heard of the terms metropolitan area and even megalopolis, which is when metropolitan areas grow together. I even taught it to my classes.

However, evidently there is a new term in use in urban geography, megapolitan.

The article had a map showing 23 megapolitan areas that form ten even larger megapolitan clusters.

Megapolitan Cluster, megapolitan areas, states where located.

CASCADIA: Puget Sound, Williamette (Wash. & Ore.)

SIERRA PACIFIC: Sierra Pacific (Cal. around San Francisco)

SOUTHWEST: Southern California, Las Vegas, Sun Corridor (Cal. Ari. Nev.)

MOUNTAIN: Wasatch Range, Front Range (Utah & Colorado)

TWIN CITIES: Twin Cities (Minn. & Wis.)

TEXAS TRIANGLE: Central Texas, Dallas/Fort Worth, Houston (Texas)

GREAT LAKES: Chicago, Michigan Corridor, Steel Corridor, Ohio Valley (Wi. Il. Mich, Ind. Ohio, Pa.)

MEGALOPOLIS: New England, New York/Philadelphia, Chesapeake (Me, NH, Mass., NY, Pa., Md., Va.)

PIEDMONT: Carolina, Atlanta (NC, SC, Ga.)

FLORIDA: Central Florida, Florida Atlantic (Fla.)

The article described these areas as "cities and counties linked through man-made and natural connections such as shared transportation networks, labor markets or water supplies."

Those Are Some Big Areas. --RoadDog

Monday, November 28, 2011

ECU Shooting for the Highest Level of Sports Competition-- Part 3

The website also noted that East Carolina fans travel to support the team. In 2010, ECU had the highest ticket sales of all C-USA teams going to bowl games. The entire ticket allotment to the Military Bowl was sold out.

Then, there is the sale of licensed merchandise, another big fan indicator. ECU has the highest selling merchandise of all non--automatic qualifier schools east of the Mississippi. Last year sales of athletic items would have ranked ECU seventh in the Big East and ninth in the ACC.

How ECU compared in football attendance in 2010 season'Average football attendance 49,665 for a 99.33 percentage capacity.

BIG EASTWest Virginia 56,325 93.87%
Pittsburgh 52,165 80.25%
Louisville 50,648 120.59%
Rutgers 47,013 89.63%

Clemson 75.786 94.38%
Florida State 71,270 86.60%
Virginia Tech 66,233 100.00%
North Carolina 58,250 97.08%
North Carolina State 56,877 98.77%
Miami (Fla) 52,575 70.18%
Georgia Tech 46,499 84.45%

Here's Hoping. --RoadDog

Sunday, November 27, 2011

ECU Shooting for the Highest Level of Sports Competition--Part 2

My school, Northern Illinois University, another one of those weather vane schools, has tried to rise above mid-level status, but with no success.

We were in the Mid-American Conference, but left in the mid-eighties to seek the higher levels as an independent. It didn't work out and we are now back in the MAC again.

ECU is now a member of Conference USA, but would like to rise to ACC or Big East level. The Winter 2012 East magazine of ECU devoted a whole page to this quest titled "Big enough for the big leagues."East Carolina has applied for membership in the big East and even retained former NC Governor Jim Hunt to lobby for the school.

This past fall the university debuted a fact-filled website to push its case at East Carolina is a consistent TV ratings power house and has a rabid fan base.

Nationally, ECU ranks #44 in average football attendance and ranked #2 among schools that don't belong to conferences that get an automatic bid to a national bowl game.

More to Come. --RoadDog

Thursday, November 24, 2011

ECU Shooting for the Highest Level of Sports Competition-- Part 1

From the East Magazine: Magazine of East Carolina University.

Over the last decades, East Carolina University has striven to play at the top levels of collegiate athletics, and it hasn't been easy. I am a big supporter of the East Carolina Pirates, even though I did not go to school there.

My parents did as did an aunt and two cousins. Had I continued living in North Carolina, it is very likely that I would have gone there.

I watch the football team whenever I can and wear the team shirts and hats often. There was always the time that Liz and I were in a bar in Dodgeville,Wisconsin, on New Year's Day watching the Peach Bowl game between ECU and North Carolina State many years ago.

Now, those people had never heard of ECU, but by the end of the game they were all pulling for the Pirates. Of course, with NC State jumping off to a big lead and East Carolina coming back to win in the second half, it was a close one.

More to Come. --RoadDog

Sunday, November 20, 2011

Where Were You November 20, 1972?

I was a senior at Northern Illinois University and taking lots of education classes in preparation to student teach in the spring. Liz and I were getting ready to get engaged.

YOU WEAR IT WELL-- Rod Stewart
ROCK AND ROLL SOUL-- Grand Funk Railroad

I WANNA BE WITH YOU-- Raspberries
ELECTED-- Alice Cooper
LISTEN TO THE MUSIC-- Doobie Brothers

BE WITH YOU-- Al Green
SUMMER BREEZE-- Seals & Crofts
FROM THE BEGINNING-- Emerson, Lake and Palmer

I'LL BE AROUND-- Spinners
I CAN SEE CLEARLY NOW-- Johnny Nash-- the #1 song in Chicago.

Want to be a Teacher. --RoadDog

Where Were You November 20, 1967?

I was a junior at Palatine High School in Palatine, Illinois, and was working at the Burger King in town. I had just met Liz a couple weeks earlier at a party and we were starting to date.

Bob Stroud did a Time Warp to This Date earlier this morning. These were songs being played on WLS and WCFL, our two main listening stations. Both were AM. All quotes are mine.

BEND ME SHAPE ME-- American Breed
SHE'S MY GIRL-- Turtles

HUSH-- Billy Joe Royal-- the old "Down in the Boondocks" man himself.
STAGGER LEE-- Wilson Pickett-- The Wicked Pickett himself.
PURPLE HAZE-- Jimi Hendrix-- Blew me away. Never heard a guitar played like this.

BEG BORROW AND STEAL-- Ohio Express-- Some of that great Bubble Gum music.
I SECOND THAT EMOTION-- Smokey Robinson & the Miracles-- Some Sweet Soul Music.
I AM THE WALRUS-- Beatles-- a two sided hit.

DAYDREAM BELIEVER-- Monkees-- Liz's ring tone.
INCENSE AND PEPPERMINTS-- Strawberry Alarm Clock-- Could you get much more psychedelic than this? Even the group's name.
THE RAIN, THE PARK & OTHER THINGS-- Cowsills-- Before there was a Partridge Family, there were a group of Cowsills.
SUSAN-- Buckinghams-- Chicago's own.

TO SIR WITH LOVE-- Lulu-- the number one song in Chicago.

Sure Took Me Back. Thanks Bob. --RoadDog

DOGS AND CATS ARE BETTER THAN KIDS-- Because they eat less.

Saturday, November 19, 2011

Talkin' GRB CEOs

From the 11-11-11 Blondie comic strip in the Chicago Tribune.

FRAME ONE: Blondie and Dagwood are at the table and he is reading the paper and says, "It looks like the CEO of another corporation is under suspicion."

Blondie-- "What did he do?"

FRAME TWO: Dagwood, "He was given a $5 million bonus."

FRAME THREE: Dagwood, "...but he refused it because he didn't feel he'd earned it."

Blondie,: "Boy, talk about running up a red flag."

Yup. --RoadDog

Movie Scratches: Time-- Rum-- Kumar's-- Puss

Movie Scratches-- A Dog's-Eye View of Current Movies.

61. 11-2-- TIME IN-- FOX LAKE $4-- The GRBs find another way to hurt regular folks. To be immortal, many must die.

62. 11-4-- RUM DIARIES-- FOX LAKE $5.50-- "A piss-pool of greed," a waterfall of rum, an LSD trip and someone weirder than Johnny Depp. Typical GRB activity.

63. 11-8-- HAROLD & KUMAR'S CHRISTMAS-- FOX LAKE $7.50-- Real live Beavis and Buttheads in 3D.

64. 11-9-- PUSS IN BOOTS-- FOX LAKE $4-- Don't anger the cat. Don't trust the egg.

Want Some Candy with That Pop? --RoadDog

Ten at Ten: 1973

Tomorrow, from 7 to 10 am, Bob Stroud will be taking a time warp back to Nov. 20, 1967 and Nov. 20, 1972 at WDTV, Chicago's Drive FM. It streams at It will take you back, way back.

Weekly, Stroud does a Ten at Ten at 10 am (and replayed at 10 pm), usually featuring a particilar year. Along with the music, there is a lot of news, movies and commercials from the year.

From Nov. 15th

1985-- Paul McCartney & Wings (And to think, 1985 WAS over a quarter century ago.)
YOU'RE 16-- Ringo Starr

DANCING WITH MR. D-- Rolling Stones
DANCING DAYS-- Led Zeppelin
DREAM ON-- Aerosmith-- (Always reminds me of the Silver Dollar Saloon at Carolina Beach, NC.)

DIAMOND GIRL-- Seals & Crofts (Sure takes me back to the drive back and forth to Round Lake from Des Plaines for my teaching job.)
WHO'S THAT LADY-- Isley Brothers

I'm listening to Wendy Rice's Saturday Morning Flashback on WXRT, 93.1 FM, right now. Today it is back to 1977. She just finished playing Bob Marley's "Exodus" and is playing Little Feat's "Old Folks Boogie" right now. Another hour to go and it streams.

Hocus Pocus Focus. hey. There's Something to It!! --RoadDog

Mid-American Conference

The Mid-American Conference (MAC)of which Northern Illinois belongs is a true conference in that they are all in the Midwest, except Buffalo which is reasonably close to Ohio. As what is called a Mid-Level conference because they do not get the absolute top players like the Big Guys (Big 10,11,12 and SEC) do.

But they do well, however.

This month, they have become the during-the-week conference with many games being played Tuesdays and Wednesdays. At least folks unfamiliar with the teams can get an idea how good the teams are. Unfortunately, that is the only time they can get any airplay.

Just NIU's games this Tuesday and two Tuesdays ago should count with 63-60 and 41-38 scores that went down to the last minute. Then, there was Toledo's 66-63 victory and Wednesday's Ohio's 29-28 win over Bowling Green.

Then, there are the increasing number of NFL players who are from the MAC.

Let's hope that potential ballplayers are noticing as well. Why sit on the bench at a Big Guy school when you can start in the MAC.

Go Mid-American Conference (Except Toledo). --RoadDog

LAST PARAPROSDOKIAN SENTENCE: The most finicky machines are those vending machines that accept dollar bills. Just try to get them to take it.

Friday, November 18, 2011

JSIS: School Lunch

JSIS-- Just Some Interesting Stuff

1. SCHOOL LUNCH-- From an article in yesterday's Chicago Tribune about the lunches offered at Chicagoland's Niles Township High School District 219. This is one of the richer suburbs.

I liked the cafeteria lunches when I went to school, but wow, this is too much and at just $2.25, WHAT a DEAL!!

September 12-16

MONDAY-- Four-cheese lasagna wit Parmesan garlic bread.
TUESDAY-- Memphis dry-rubbed BBQ chicken with succotash (Well, I would have at least tried the succotash.)
WEDNESDAY-- Grass-fed beef burger on wheat bun with roasted potatoes.
THURSDAY-- Organic pasta with marinara sauce.
FRIDAU-- Asian-marinated free-range chicken with brown rice.

The article says the kids like it. I know I'D LIKE IT! We've come a long way from when schools argued that ketchup was a vegetable.

Good-Eatin' in Niles. --RoadDog

Ten at Ten: 1976

From WDRV November 14th.

Going back to 1976 for this one. I was teaching in Round Lake and we had just moved into our new house at 1013 Morningside Dr. in Round Lake Beach, Illinois.

GO YOUR OWN WAY-- Fleetwood Mac
ON THE BORDER-- Al Stewart

BOHEMIAN RHAPSODY-- Queen (If my hair had been long, I'd have been swinging it back and forth.)
EUROPA-- Santana

DON'T TAKE ME ALIVE-- Steely Dan (I knew the song but not the title.)
COME TO PAPA-- Bob Seger

Any Memories? --RoadDog

Movie Scratches: Ides-- Year-- Footloose-- Paranormal

A Dog's Eye View of Current Movies.

57. 10-19-- IDES OF MARCH-- FOX LAKE $4-- Politics as usual. What a web we weave when we deceive.

58. 10-26-- THE BIG YEAR-- FOX LAKE $4-- One for the birds.

59. 10-26-- FOOTLOOSE-- FOX LAKE $4-- Getting spiritual for dance. Plenty of dancing feet.

60. 10-31-- PARANORMAL ACTIVITY 3-- FOX LAKE $5.50-- the wife trying to scare her husband by popping out of the closet scared me the most.

The Big Bathroom Rush After the Film. --RoadDog

PARAPROSDOKIAN SENTENCE: Nothing eats up your dollars faster than a vending machine.

Thursday, November 17, 2011

Ten at Ten: 1968

From WDRV November 9th.

See if these songs jolt the old memory.

LEGEND OF A MIND-- Moody Blues (always think this should be "Timothy Leary's Dead" for some reason.
HUSH-- Deep Purple-- Billy Joe Royal was so proud.

FOR ONCE IN MY LIFE-- Stevie Wonder
ELENORE-- Turtles-- Vocals by Flo and Eddie or what.
HELLO I LOVE YOU-- Doors-- My favorite Doors song.

STORMY-- Classics IV
STONE FREE-- Jimi Hendrix
ON THE ROAD AGAIN-- Canned Heat-- Or is it Stoned Again?

Carry Me Back. --RoadDog

Movie Scratches: Dogs-- Moneyball-- 50/50-- Thing

Movie Scratches-- A dog's quick bite of current movies.

53. 9-27-- STRAW DOGS--FOX LAKE $5.50-- These "good old boys" aren't so nice. The coach ain't so nice neither.

54. 9-28-- MONEYBALL-- FOX LAKE $4-- Money isn't everything.

55. 10-13-- 50/50-- FOX LAKE $5.50-- Laughed and cried. Should get an Academy nomination.

56. 10-19-- THE THING-- FOX LAKE $4-- Definitely not an alien related to E.T. Was this the idea for "Alien?"

Yuck. Sticky Bathroom Floors. --RoadDog

PARAPROSDOKIAN SENTENCE: Change is inevitable, except from a vending machine.

Wednesday, November 16, 2011

JSS: Christmas Lights-- Coach K-- NIU Wins-- "Bad Moon Rising"

JSS-- Just Some Stuff

1. CHRISTMAS LIGHTS-- Took advantage of a rare sunny 50s day and finished putting up all the Christmas outside decorations yesterday.

2. COACH K-- Congrats to Coach K of Duke. I am not even going to try to spell out his last name. The victory over Michigan State last night gave him his 903rd Division 1 basketball victory, breaking a tie he had with Coach Booby Knight.

3. NIU WINS-- Darn scary game if you ask me. Nothern did everything they could to lose the game with Ball State before winning with just 8 seconds to go on a field goal. And that was overcoming some big deficits, two fumbles that led to Cardinal TDs and 107 yards in penalties. Like our QB Chandler Harnish said, they took some years off Huskie fans' lives watching the game. Final score: NIU 41 Ball State 38.

4. "BAD MOON RISING"-- WXRT is playing Creedence Clearwater Revival's "Bad Moon Rising" right now. I had to check my cell phone to se if someone was calling since that is my ringtone. I do that whenever I hear this song.

There's a Bathroom on the Right. --RoadDog

2011 Carolina Beach Music Association Award Winners

Thanks to Willie C. for the list. There were more awards, but these are some I found of particular interest:

FEMALE VOCALIST-- Rhonda McDaniels
MALE VOCALIST-- Craig Woolard

FAVORITE NEW ARTIST-- Carolina Breakers
SONG OF THE YEAR-- "I Still Do" by the Fantastic Shakers


FM DJ-- Ted Bell, WVCO 94.9 FM
CLUB-- Fat Harold's, North Myrtle Beach, SC

FM STATION-- 91.7 FM WGSE Gastonia, NC
AM STATION-- 920 AM WCPK Burlington, NC

Beach Music. Mighty Good Stuff. --RoadDog

ABOUT THE END OF THE PARAPROSDOKIAN SENTENCES: If you are supposed to learn from your mistakes, why do some people have more than one child?

Who Are the One Percent?

These are the folks the Occupy Movement is fighting.

They are considered to be the 1%; the number the 99% are against. Their lair seems to be especially strong in that zone known as Wall Street. The main thing I'm alarmed about is the widening gap between rich and poor.

From the Nov. 2nd Chicago Tribune "Widening U.S. income gap could have far-reaching effect" by David J. Lynch. Bloomberg.

"Since 1980, about 5 percent of annual national income has shifted from the middle class to the nation's richest households. That means that the wealthiest 5,934 households last year enjoyed and additional $650 billion--about $109 million apiece...."

"'We are the 99 percent that will no longer tolerate the greed and corruption of the 1 percent,' says the website."

I'm not sure of the 1% number being correct, but I am mad about the rich getting richer, the poor getting poorer and the rapid erosion of our country's middle class. I hold the hedge funds, Wall Street, speculators and investment bankers for bringing on this really bad recession (or is it the Great Recession as I have heard it called).

I don't know what the Occupy Movement will accomplish, but hopefully, at minimum, the GRBs as I call them now know that "we" know what they're all about.

Even better, maybe the government will come to "see" as well and maybe stop their attacks on the Occupiers.

Where Will This Lead? --RoadDog

Tuesday, November 15, 2011

Holiday Gobbles More Cash-- Part 2

Sweet potatoes, 3 pounds: $3.19, $3.26, 7 cents

Fresh cranberries, 12 oz.: $2.41, $2.48, 7 cents

Pie shells, 2: $2.46, $2.52, 6 cents (Oh boy, two pies!!!)

Miscellaneous ingredients: $3.22, $3.22, a 12 CENT DROP!!

1-pound relish tray (carrots and celery): 77 cents, 76 cents, a ONE CENT DROP!!

TOTAL: 2010: $43.47 2011: $49.20.

Up $5.73 = 13%.

Sad, Sad. --RoadDog

Holiday Gobbles More Cash-- Part 1

From the Nov. 11th Chicago Tribune by Jeff Wilson.

The cost of a Thanksgiving dinner will jump more than 13% this year, the biggest gain in more than 20 years. A meal for ten people rises to $49.20 from $43.47 last year. Turkey is the biggest increase.

I will give the item, 2010 price,2011 price and increase.

16-pound turkey: $17.66, $21.57, $3.91

Milk 1-gallon whole: $3.24, $3.66, 42 cents

Pumpkin-pie mix, 30 oz., $2.62, $3.03. 41 cents

Whipping cream, half pint: $1.70, $1,96, 26 cents

Cubed stuffing, 14 oz.: $2.64, $2.88, 24 cents

Green peas, 1 pound: $1.44, $1.68, 24 cents

Rolls, 12: $2.12, $2.30, 18 cents

More increases coming.

Thanks GRBs. --RoadDog

PARAPROSDOKIAN SENTENCE: A bus is a vehicle that runs twice as fast when you're after it as when you are in it.

Monday, November 14, 2011

JSS: McRib Me-- Puss in Boots-- Not On It, But...-- Where's My Watch?

JSS-- Just Some Stuff.

1. McRIB ME-- Last day for McRibs. I had one yesterday and am going back for one last one today. I'll sure miss them.

2. PUSS IN BOOTS-- Finally got to see it after there being too many school age kids seeing it before. I go in the early afternoons during the week. Don't these kids have school.

Perhaps they are home schooled. If that is the case, I would have liked to be home schooled. Let's see. What do I want to do? Work on my math or see a movie? That's a hard one.

Great movie as I expected.

3. NOT ON IT, BUT...-- Wednesday, while at Dill Pickle in Spring Grove, we met a couple who had been high school sweethearts back in the 1960s and had lost touch with each other, but met through that Facebook thing. My friend Mark, also met his high school sweetheart through that Facebook thing.

I am not on it, but reckon it's a good thing if for no other reason than this.

4. WHERE'S MY WATCH?-- I was absolutely miserable at the Dog House grand opening and the Big Band Dance at the Legion Saturday because I had forgotten to put my watch back on after my shower earlier. I kept looking at my left wrist and it kept reading a hair past three hairs.

Liz suggested I look at my cell phone. After she showed me how to get the time up on it, I think I'll have to stay with the wrist watch.

Wondering If We Can Find a Way to Strap My Cell Phone to My Left Wrist? --RoadDog

A Good Weekend

FRIDAY, 11-11-11

Love doing those numbers. Took the boat out to the barn in Hebron and put it away for the winter. No More boating for me. Breakfast at Kaitie's in Hebron.

American Legion/VFW ceremony at Fox Lake train station at 11 am. Spiced pumpkin cappachino at the Mobil station.

Drinks at the new Route 12 Bar in Fox Lake then Happy Hour and NTN at Donovan's Reef. We even watched the original Donovan's Reef movie starring John Wayne and Lee Marvin. The bar was named after the movie. Now Tommy and Lenny need to paint the bar top red like in the movie.

SATURDAY, 11-12-11

USMC Birthday Breakfast at the Legion. Bringing the patio, deck, gazebo yard and front porch furniture and stuff into the garage.

Dawg House Bar and Grill grand opening in Fox Lake with auce pig roast and karaoke. Lakes Area Swing Band playing Big Band Music at the Legion.

SUNDAY, 11-13-11

A Bears victory at the Squaw Bar with the Usual Suspects.

A good Time Was Had By All. --RoadDog

PARAPROSDOKIAN SENTENCE: One thing about those property taxes. They go up regardless of whether your property value goes up or down.

Saturday, November 12, 2011

Time for McRibs Is Running Short

I have heard we've only got 'em until Nov. 14th. That's Monday!! I've had five of them so far and still need to get at least one or two more in. Got to have my McRib fix. I'm hooked.

Man, when that sweet meat hits your mouth, wow...heaven on earth.

Of course, I might get lucky and perhaps the McDonald's in Fox Lake, Illinois, might have ordered more than they sold and have some left past Monday. That HAS HAPPENED before. The sign was down, but I asked if they had any left. They said they had a few. I ordered. Then most every other person in the place did as well.

Then, sadly, there was no more.

Love Dem McRibs!! --RoadDog

Me and Technology

Or, I should say way obsolete technology. I just don't keep up anymore and have thrown in the latest iPhone.

A new favorite comic strip of mine is Pickles about an old codger named Earl and his wife Opal and there life. I really can relate to Earl.

This is from the July 21, 2011, strip in the Chicago Tribune.

FIRST FRAME: Earl and Opa are sitting on the couch watching TV. Their adult daughter is in the house standing behind them.

She says' "You guys should get a new high-definition flat screen TV."

Earl, "No thanks."


Earl, "This old Zenith still gets the job done. There's no sense tossing out a perfectly good TV."


Daughter, "Is that why you hang on to your old eight-track player and Polaroid camera?"


Earl, "Yeah, I guess I have an affinity for obsolete old things."

Opal turns to him and says, "You ARE an obsolete old thing."

That kind of sums me up pretty well. I'm old and really obsolete when it comes to technology. Shoot, I still record and listen to music on cassette tapes.

Oh Well. --RoadDog

PARAPROSDOKIAN SENTENCE: Property Tax; A tax that goes up when your property value goes up. You'd Think that it would then go down when your property value decreases. Not here in McHenry County, Illinois.

Friday, November 11, 2011

It's an 11-11-11 Thing

Let's see, yesterday was 11-10-11. That is....

And not only is it 11-11-11 by the calendar, it's also 11-11-11 by the Veterans Day. World War I ended with an armistice on the 11th hour of the 11th day of the 11th month as they like to say. It became known as Armistice Day and became a day to honor the World War I veterans. Later, it was expanded to honor the veterans of all wars, both before and since, even though World War I was to be the War to End All Wars. Unfortunately, it wasn't.

I'll be putting the boat up for the winter in a barn out in Hebron, Illinois, and will make sure to 11-11-11 the check instead of writing out the date as I usually do.

Then, it's a traditional stop at the restaurant at 47 and 173 for breakfast and the American Legion/VFW ceremony at the Fox Lake train station at 11 am.

Then, a newly traditional NTN cruise with Kelly and Kevin to southern Wisconsin.

Thanks Veterans. --RoadDog

PARAPROSDOKIAN SENTENCE: A plane is also where they now charge you big-time for luggage and still lose it anyway.

Thursday, November 10, 2011

Omigosh!! SNOW!!!

A couple hours ago, I was out taking video and photos of our first snowfall of the year here in northeast Illinois. And, our boat is still at the marina so need to pick it up and get it out to the barn in Hebron, Illinois, where we keep it during the summer.

Well, in truth, there wasn't much to it. A flurry really. A little bit stuck, but should melt real soon. Got some shots of the burning bushes which still have their red leaves with snow on them. Usually, the leaves are long gone before the first snow.

It sure got cold yesterday. Reckon winter is on its way.

I need to get the rest of the front porch, deck, patio and gazebo furniture in now as well.

And, hey, there are still the outside Christmas decorations to get up.

Oh, yes, I have to put gas in the snow blower and see if it works.

Retired Work Is Never Done. --RoadDog

JUST ABOUT DONE WITH THE PARAPROSDOKIAN SENTENCES: A plane is something that leaves on time unless you're on it. It especially leaves on time if you're running late because of traffic on the way to the airport or problems at security.

Wednesday, November 9, 2011

It's Them, Not Me: Who Are Those "Occupiers?"

Good question. The Occupy Movement seems to be taking off, but at the same time, has a whole lot of different reasons. I'd have to say it is mostly a whole lot of people that are just no longer happy with the way things are going.

People are without jobs, can't pay their bills, losing their homes and the cost of everything is going up, to name just a few things.

Then, you keep hearing about the millions in profits being made by the corporations, the millions being made by hedge fund operators, Wall Street investors and bankers.

People are getting mad. I know I am. Something needs to be done about our GRBs, and it appears the government is not going to do it. Many people had great hopes that the new president would make a difference. It hasn't. It's the same-old, same-old, business as usual.

I support the Occupiers (although not all aspects of the various interest groups involved in it). I hope the powers that be are taking note that people are very unhappy with what is going on and take steps to make things better.

I have been listening to Americana Music lately and like Ry Cooder's "No Banker Left Behind."

People Are Mad. --RoadDog

Don't be "Askeered"

Don't be afraid if you hear civil defense sirens at 1 pm today or are watching TV or listening to the radio as a major, all-inclusive civil defense test is being held for 30 seconds.

Officials don't want folks calling 911 or police departments. I guess they're hoping we won't have another "War of the Worlds" incident.

I don't imagine I'll hear it as I'll probably be at the movies. Wonder if they'll test there as well?

This is a good idea as you never know.

The Sky is Falling. --RoadDog

PARAPROSDOKIAN SENTENCE: To be sure of hitting the target, shoot first and call whatever you hit the target. That's pretty much what I do when playing pool. If I knock the ball in, that is what I was aiming for.

Tuesday, November 8, 2011

Americana Music Countdown November 1st-- Part 2

I've been enjoying listening to the chart several times now. This is the great music you don't get to hear. An asterisk means I especially liked it.

15. *RUN CONEJO RUN-- Dave Alvin
14. *MAKE IT OUT WEST-- Greencards
12. *LEARN HOW TO LOVE-- Tedeschi Trucks Band
11. *LITTLE BIRD-- Kasey Chambers

10. *TWO SPARROWS-- Gourds
9. *STUFF THAT WORKS-- Guy Clark
8. *YOU'RE GONNA MISS ME-- Ollabelle
7. WORKING MAN'S PRAYER-- Larry C. Johnson
6. *YOU CAN BET I'M GONE-- Joe Ely

4. SCARLET TOWN-- Gillian Welch
3. *DAMN THIS TOWN-- John Hiatt
1. *I GOTTA GO-- Robert Earl Keen

Good Stuff, Maynard. Give It a Listen. --RoadDig

PARAPROSDOKIAN SENTENCE: You're never too old to learn something stupid.

Monday, November 7, 2011

Meet-A-Vet, A Football Game and a New Place

This past Saturday, I went to the American Legion in Fox Lake, Illinois, for their second annual Meet-A-Vet Day. I had long talks with a survivor, Al Zalent, of the sinking of the USS Princeton, an aircraft carrier at the Battle of the Philippines. I also had an interesting discussion with Burton Showers who was a member of General MacArthur's staff during World War II. I will be writing about them in my history blog.

Then caught the last half of the Richmond-Burton Rockets-Mendota Trojans Class 4A IHSA Football Playoff game in Richmond. The Rockets were losing 7-0 when I arrived, but scored and led at half 10-7. They went on to win 37-19 and will go on to face Evergreen Park in the 3rd round this Saturday.

Everyone was invited to a pizza party at Turtle Creek Banquets in Spring Grove, so I went home and got Liz. It was auce for $5. We had heard about the place, but never been. This was a good opportunity to see it. The place is on 23 acres and has a huge North Woods-style lodge. Pretty impressive.

Last stop was Tommy's where we watched Northwestern upset Nebraska and then home where I watched that boring #1 LSU vs. #2 Alabama game at Margaritaville.

A Good Day. --RoadDog

Americana Music Countdown Week of November 1st-- Part 1

You can see the list at Cashbox Magazine and listen to it at the same place if you're tired of the same old, same old over the air. This is the kind of music you don't often get a chance to hear. Kind of a sun genre if you will.

I have heard a station out of central Illinois, the WHIP, playing the music during my travels and liked it. I am really getting into the music now.

Unfortunately, the countdown stream does not have a deejaying announcing and giving information. Asterisks mean songs that I particularly liked.

30. *SWEET NOTHINGS-- Girls Guns and Glory
29. *NO SIMPLE MACHINE-- Old 97s
27. HORSESHOE LOUNGE-- Slaid Cleves
26. TIME CHANGES EVERYTHING-- Jimmy Dale Gilmore & the Wronglers

24. MY MOTHER PRAYED-- Dobbie & Krista Poyner
22. *HELL ON HEELS-- Pistol Annies
21. *MINGO COUNTRY W.VA-- Judy Haney Goode
20. *MOVIN' ON-- Fraser Newcombe

18. *TIGER & THE MONKEY-- Jim Lauderdale
17. *BALLAD OF ROSALIE-- Cody Canada & the Departed
16. I REMEMBER YOU-- Eilen Jewell

You can see the list at hrrp://

Mighty Good Listenin'. --RoadDog

PARAPROSDOKIAN SENTENCE: When tempted to fight fire, remember that the Fire Department usually uses water.

Saturday, November 5, 2011

It's a Music Thing: 1968-- Americana Music-- Hometown Heroes

Listening to WXRT's Wendy Rice doing her Saturday Morning Flashback show right now. Today;s program is right back to a special year for me, 1968. You get the music and all sorts of other stuff happening that year that covered my junior and senior years at Palatine High School in Palatine, Illinois. It goes to noon.

1 2 3 REDLIGHT-- 1910 Fruitgum Company
SPACE ODDITY-- David Bowie
CLOUD NINE-- Temptations

It streams so if you're not in the Chicago area, you can give a listen.

Earlier, I was listening to Cashbox's Americana Music Singles. This was the first time for me. This is where they play music by Old 97s, Jimmie Dale Gilmore, Jim Lauderdale, Guy Clark, Joe Ely, Ry Cooder, Johm Hiatt, Jayhawks and Robert Earl keen. Good stuff.

Tomorrow, Bob Stroud's Rock and Roll Roots show on WDRV, The Drive at 97.1 FM in Chicago, features Hometown Heroes, the music of Chicago 60s and 70s groups like New Colony Six, Shadows of Knight, Cryan' Shames and Buckinghams.

I imagine part of this is due to the fact that he is not having his Rock and Roll Roots CD release this year because of the fall of his biggest supporter, Borders Books. He always had these groups at his release parties.

Too much Music As Well. --RoadDog

Goodbye Boat (for the Winter)-- Winter Put Up-- Veterans-- Shel Silversteen

I'm going over to pick up the boat from the marina today. It has now been winterized and the hull cleaned. Next week, I take it over for winter storage. Then, I will spend time bringing in stuff from the gazebo, deck, front porch and yard. After all, winter is coming.

The Fox Lake American Legion is hosting the 2nd Annual Meet-A-Vet Day in the afternoon. There will be a Pearl Harbor survivor, Medal of Honor winner and member of MacArthur' staff along with many others. More on this in my History Blog.

Later, thinking of seeing ten short plays by Shel Silverstein in Richmond.

Too Much to Do. Not Enough Time to Do It. --RoadDog

PARAPROSDOKIAN SENTENCE: I used to be indecisive. Now I'm not sure.

Friday, November 4, 2011

A Last Look at the NIU-Toledo Game

From the Nov. 2nd Chicago Tribune "NIU gets last word: Defense absent but Huskies take division lead in shootout."

Shootout? That was an understatement.

I have to admit that even had Toledo won, I'd have to rank this as one of the best games I ever saw.

** NIU qb Chandler Harnish threw six touchdowns.

** NIU's Tommylee Lewis returned Toledo's first two kicks for a 100 and a 95 yard TD.

** 1,121 yards total offense.

** 11 lead changes.

** 123 total points.

** Northern's winning TD was a nine-yard pass with 19 seconds left in the game.

** Toledo almost scored in those final 19 seconds.

** Toledo's Eric Page scored five TDs.

** 43 points scored in the fourth quarter.

** Northern's Harnish was 17 of 26 for 265 and ran the ball 16 times for 123 yards.

** Northern's Nathan Palmer had 120 yards receiving and three TDs.

No Wonder I Was So "Wore Out" At the End of the Game. --RoadDog

Worst Words to Say at Work

In Forbes by Linda Durro.

I don't know.
I'll get back to you.
Yes, but.
I guess.
We'll see.

How About Swearing at the Boss? --RoadDog

Ten Fictional Handicapped Characters

From the May 29, 2010, List Universe folks.

10. Timmy and Jimmy Vulmer-- South Park
9. Professor X-- X-Men
8. Lt. Dan-- Forrest Gump

7. Pelswick-- Cartoon show on Nickelodeum
6. Jake Sully-- Avatar
5. Lincoln Rhyme-- Bone Collector
4. Joe Swanson-- Family Guy

3. L.B. "Jeff" Jeffries-- James Stewart in "Rear Window"
2. Dr. Strangelove
1. John Locke-- Lost

As usual, pictures and write ups on each at the site.

Equal Opportunity. --RoadDog

PARAPROSDOKIAN SENTENCE: Some people cause happiness wherever they go. Others whenever they go.

Thursday, November 3, 2011

Ten Most Popular Franchises-- Part 2

6. DUNKIN DONUTS-- 9,000 around the globe

7. SUPER 8 MOTELS-- Started with one motel in Aberdeen, SD, in 1974 with rooms at $8.88 a night. 2,000 North American locations.

8. DAYS INN-- Started in 1970. 1,910 motels in 15 countries.

9. CURVES FOR WOMEN-- Launched in Texas in 1992. Four million members, 10,000 sites in 70 countries.

10. MATCO TOOLS-- No licensing or royalty fees. Sell out of trucks.

These were based on Franchise rates to repay SBA loans.

Maybe I'll Start My Own Business. Nah, Too Much Woik. --RoadDog

Ten Most Popular Franchises-- Part 1

From April 21st CNN Money.

1. SUBWAY-- With their $5 footlongs. Biggest fast food chain in the world with 33,000 in 91 countries. Initial franchise setup of $15,000

2. QUIZNOS-- Toasted subs. $25,000 initial fee. The one in Fox Lake, Il. went out of business.

3. UPS STORE-- UPS bought Mailboxes, Etc. in 2001

4. COLDSTONE CREAMERY-- Super premium ice cream (and super premium prices)-- 1,400 locations. $42,000 initial fee. The one in Fox Lake went out of business.

5. DAIRY QUEEN-- Celebrating 70th birthday. Blizzards. 5,700 locations. $35,000 initial fees.

More to Come. --RoadDog

Another Look at the NIU-Toledo Game

I have to rate this as one of the best I've ever seen as far as excitement, It just went back and forth. Neither team had a defense and ran and passed at will. I don't think there were more than four punts the whole game. The final score would have been even closer except that he Rockets twice went for two-point conversions and Northern's D actually stopped them.

It got to the point that whoever had the ball last was going to win...and they almost did.

And did I mention, it was against our long-time nemesis, the Toledo Rockets? However, regardless who won, it would have been a great game.

Last night, we were at Tommy's Sports Bar in Spring Grove and Channel 7 ran the scoring plays in its news. And ESPN, in their 60 second show ran the game with the words "Greatest Football Game?" Unfortunately, the sound was off so couldn't hear what they were saying.

The sports announcers for ESPN2 sure had a great time announcing the game and long-time NIU sports announcer Bill Baker was completely beside himself.

That Was One Helluva Game. --RoadDog

PARAPROSDOKIAN SENTENCE: I discovered that I scream the same way whether I'm about to be devoured by a great white shark or if a piece of seaweed touches my foot.

Wednesday, November 2, 2011

One Hell of a Game

It was NIU vs. Our Nemesis Toledo. Still recovering from it this morning.

NIU Toledo
First Quarter

Second Quarter

28-14 Starting to breathe easier

Third Quarter


Fourth Quarter

63-60 with 19 seconds left

It became apparent early on that whoever had the ball last would win, and Toledo almost did score with the 19 seconds left. This was a game for the ages.

Gasping. --RoadDog

Goodbye to the Dodge Dakota

And in more ways than just one. Yahoo had a list of vehicles going adios by their car companies after this year, and the great Dodge Dakota is one of them.

I am seriously considering selling the one I have now as we have four vehicles with just two drivers and three available garage spaces to park them. We bought a 2011 Malibu back in the spring and are keeping the 2003 Malibu. We also have an '85 Firebird which we bought new. Never had a car that long.

The 2005 Dakota is my second one. I bought one back in 1990 and drove it until we traded it in for the current one. It is the right size truck for me as a Mid Size. Sorry to hear Dodge is dropping it.

Other American cars leaving us:

Buick Lucerne
Ford Crown Victoria
Ford Ranger
Cadillac DTS
Cadillac STS
Chevy HHR

First I Lost My Firebirds, Then My Pontiacs. Now, This!! Come on Guys!! --RoadDog

Fall Color Patrol: Woodstock, Illinois and a Party

October 29th

Drove to Woodstock, Illinois, about twenty miles away. A fair amount of color in the Martin's Woods Subdivision west of McHenry. Not much on Illinois 120. McRib Fix in Woodstock. The Woodstock Square was ablaze with color.

Bull Valley Road heading east was a disappointment as far as color, but always a pretty drive if the cops don't get you. Went to the McHenry Dam and Moraine Hills state parks south of McHenry. Pretty, but not much color.

Concretes at Culvers (they copied Ted Drewe's in St. Louis). Drive around our subdivision with lots of color.

Halloween party at Captain's Quarters with the band Rhythm Kings outside in the tent.

Good Day. --RoadDog

Tony La Russa's Ten Greatest Seasons as Manager

One really great baseball manager. I was sorry to hear he retired and had wanted him to return to Chicago to manage the Sox again after Potty Mouth left for warmer climes.

But, what a way to go out. A World Series Championship, especially when they were so far out of the running for wildcard.

I came across an article in Yahoo! Sports from the Big League Stew sports blog by David Brown listing and discussing his ten greatest seasons. I will just be listing them (except for the two Sox seasons).

1. 2011 Cardinals
2. 1989 As
3. 2006 Cards
4. 2002 Cards
5. 1988 As
6. 2004 Cards
7. 1983 White Sox. They were 16-24 in June and won the AL West by 20 games. My second all-time favorite Sox team.
8. 1992 As
9. 1981 White Sox. With acquisition of Luzinski and Fisk.
10. 2007 Cards

Here's hoping he takes a part-time job with the Sox. hey, the guy's a winner.

Congrats La Russa

PARAPROSDOKIAN SENTENCE: Money can't buy happiness, but ut sure makes misery easier to live with.