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 www.ecu.edu/undaunted. 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.

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 www.wdrv.com. 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 OccupyWallStreet.org 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 means...today 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://cashboxmagazine.com/Countdowns/Americana.html?id=14147

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.

Tuesday, November 1, 2011

JSS: 50-- Paranormal Activity 3-- The Day After-- To McRib or Whopper?

JSS-- Just Some Stuff

1. 50-- That's how many Trick-or-Treaters we had yesterday. Best costume was a little kid dressed as Tow Tater from the movie "Cars."

2. PARANORMAL ACTIVITY 3--Yesterday, I saw the movie "Paranormal Activity 3" on Halloween Day. I figured what better thing to do on Oct. 31st than watch a scary movie.

The only really scary thing was when the wife jumped out of the closet. I don't know who jumped farther, her film husband or me. The scariest part of the rest was waiting for something scary to happen.

3. THE DAY AFTER-- Taking down Halloween decorations today. I already was out scrounging through Walgreen's and Jewel for half-price candy and Halloween stuff for next year.

4. TO McRIB OR WHOPPER?-- Quite the quandary for me yesterday. After the movie, I had a choice of going to McDonald's for a McRib or using an Entertainment Book coupon (which was about to expire) for buy one Whopper from Burger King, get one free. I thought about it all during the movie (probably why it didn't scare me).

In the end, I opted for the Whopper, cheap old me.

I'll Have a McRib Tomorrow. --RoadDog

Number One Songs This Date: November 1st-- Part 2

1974 YOU HAVEN'T DONE NOTHIN'-- Stevie Wonder
1973 MIDNIGHT TRAIN TO GEORGIA-- Gladys Knight & the Pips
1972 I CAN SEE CLEARLY NOW-- Johnny Nash

1970 I'LL BE THERE-- Jackson 5

1969 SUSPICIOUS MINDS-- Elvis Presley
1968 HEY JUDE-- Beatles
1967 TO SIR WITH LOVE-- Lulu

1965 GET OFF MY CLOUD-- Rolling Stones
1964 BABY LOVE-- Supremes
1963 SUGAR SHACK-- Jimmy Gilmer & the Fireballs

1962 HE'S A REBEL-- Crystals
1961 BIG BAD JOHN-- Jimmy Dean

1951 COLD COLD HEART-- Tony Bennett (Would Hank have been ok with this?)
1941 PIANO CONCERTO IN B FLAT-- Freddy Martin
1931 GOODNIGHT SWEETHEART-- Wayne King (The Waltz ____)

1921 ALL BY MYSELF-- Ted Lewis
1911 ALEXANDER'S RAGTIME BAND-- Arthur Collins and Byron Harlon
1901 THE TALE OF THE BUMBLE BEE-- Harry MacDonough

Taking You Back, Way Back. --RoadDog

Number One Songs This Date: Nov. 1st-- Part 1

It's the first day of the month. Time to look back at the #1 songs this date going back 110 years (like you could remember THAT far back). Thanks to Josh Hosler and his excellent site, well worth checking out) at www.joshhosler.biz/NumberOneinHistory/SelectMonth.htm.

2001 FAMILY AFFAIR-- Mary J. Blige
1991 ROMANTIC-- Karyn White

1988 KOKOMO-- Beach Boys (OK, stop singing this.)
1987 I THINK WE'RE ALONE NOW-- Tiffany

1986 TRUE COLORS-- Cyndi Lauper
1985 PART-TIME LOVER-- Stevie Wonder
1984 CARIBBEAN QUEEN-- Billy Ocean (One of my favorites-ever.)
1983 ISLANDS IN THE STREAM-- Kenny Rogers and Dolly Parton (Oh, Dollyland.)

1982 UP WHERE WE BELONG-- Joe Cocker and Jennifer Warnes
1981 PRIVATE EYES-- Hall & Oates
1980 WOMAN IN LOVE-- Barbra Streisand

1979 POP MUZIK-- M
1978 YOU NEEDED ME-- Anne Murray (What happened these last two years?)
1977 YOU LIGHT UP MY LIFE-- Debby Boone

1976 ROCK 'N ME-- Steve Miller Band
1975 ISLAND GIRL-- Elton John

More to Come. --RoadDog

PARAPROSDOKIAN SENTENCE: Hospitality: Making your guests feel like they're at home, even if you wish they really were.