Daisies. They're A' Bloomin' Now. I have several hundred of them.

Tuesday, July 31, 2012

Dad Gets Hurt Very Badly Thirty Years Ago Today

I have been reading in my 1982 journal and this date, thirty years ago, the Atlantic Ocean got the better of Dad.  We were at Carlina Beach, North Carolina, back then, just wrapping up a week at the beach.

In the morning, Dad and I went out to look at the lake and Sugar Loaf to look at the old Confederate positions from the Civil War.  When we got back, we went swimming one last time in the ocean.  This is where I pick up that day:

"We all went swimming one more time this morning.  The ocean has been very rough ever since we got here and it nearly claimed "Surfer Bud."  Dad had gotten out further than he deemed safe and decided to ride a wave back in.  Unfortunately, he picked the wrong wave.  I had been going over the top of waves, but decided to go under this one as it looked particularly violent.  It grabbed Dad and threw him with the awesome forse it possessed headfirst into the bottom.  This gave him a concussion and hurt his back badly.

At first, I thought he was just kidding, but soon noticed the pain was real.  He scared me badly.  At first, he couldn't see anything, but gradually the sight came back.  I was more worried about the pain in his back.  He refused to let us call an ambulance and walked back to the cottage.  After he took a shower, we took him to the Federal Point Medical Center, but it was closed so we went back to the cottage, finished packing , and Mom drove Dad, Andy and Chris back to Goldsboro.  (The Prince Reunion was the next day.)"

I Sure Remember This Event.  --RoadDog

Come On, Enough's Enough!!

And, I'm afraid we're just getting started.  Read an article recently in the Chicago Tribune about Norfolk, Virgina, which is getting swamped with political ads from Obama and Romney.  While I was in North Carolina earlier this month, they were getting swamped as well.

If these political ads concentrated on what the candidate wanted to do, that would be one thing, but all these are amount to personal attacks.  The way I'm viewing them, even if they are only remotely true, is that the two men running for the top position in the country should probably best be considered as candidates for long jail terms.

I don't know what their "advisors" are saying to them, but, at this point I will probably have to vote for which ever one offends me the least, meaning, whoever has the fewest attack ads.  Even better, perhaps a viable Third Party can come together and give us an actual choice.

We are just now getting some of the negative ads here in Illinois.  No doubt, we've been spared till now because Illinois is not considered a swing state as the Land of Lincoln, once a Republican bastion (well, weren't the Southern states once "The Yellow Dog Democrats?), is expected to go for Obama.

It Is Going to be a Long Haul to November.  --RoadDog

Movie Scratches: Shadows-- Black-- Prometheus-- Huntsman

A dog's-eye view of some recent movies I've seen.

25.  5-30--  DARK SHADOWS--  FOX LAKE--  $4--  A vampire from 1792 adopts to life in 1972.  A perfect role for Depp.

26.  6-15--  MEN IN BLACK--  FOX LAKE--  FREE--  So, "K" knew "J" from before.

27.  6-18--  PROMETHEUS--  FOX LAKE--  $6--  So, that's where that pesky Alien came from.

28.  6-25--  SNOW WHITE AND THE HUNTSMAN--  FOX LAKE--  $6--  A great re-telling of an old story.

Ouch, Matinees Raised form $5.50 to $6.  --RoadDog

YOU CAN RETIRE TO CALIFORNIA WHERE you drive your rented Mercedes to the neighborhood block party.

Monday, July 30, 2012

I Feel for You, Dag

As I have oft-mentioned, I am more than a little bit behind the times when it comes to new technology.

More than a little, little, little, little as it were or is.

I had to chuckle at the July 6th Blondie comic strip in the Chicago Tribune.

Dagwood is walking into his house and the young boy, Elmo, comes up to him at the door.

Elmo:  "Poor Emory got grounded, Mr. B."
Dagwood:  "That's too bad, Elmo...so are you looking for another friend to play with?

Elmo:  "Nah...That's so 20th century!  I've got Emory on Skype video from his room!"
Emory from the laptop: "Hi, Mr. B.!!"

Dagwood is inside and turns to the viewer and says, "It's amazing how outta the loop I am."

I Feel For Ya, Dag.  --RoadDog

Aye, 'Tis a Beach Life for Me-- Part 6

And, speaking of beaches, we then took a walk around the Carolina Beach boardwalk area, which to me refers to all the pedestrian-only streets down by where the old wooden boardwalk used to be.  Parking on the streets and in some lots is available all the time AND FREE!!  Hard to believe there would be free parking at the beach like that.  Try to get that at a big beach in FLA.

Sad to see that the old bumper cars are now gone as is the old Landmark restaurant right at what is considered to be the heart of CB.  We need to bring those back.  I used to inflict a lot of pain to others in those bumper cars, especially on my brother Bob and sister Julie.  However, my students paid me back in full at Great America in Gurnee in Illinois, when I made the mistake of going out and immediately became the target of everyone of the little imps.  I was actually sore when I got off.

I  had bought an Arcadia book at Fort Fisher featuring postcards of Carolina Beach from the early 1900s to 1960s with a lot of history.  This beach has been important to my family dating all the way back to when my grandparents had that pre-Hazel cottage and then, we still spent a lot of weeks there during summers in rented cottages and even camped out several times at a campground at Snow's Cut (which connects the Cape Fear River with the sounds along the coast as part of the Intercoastal waterway).

More to Come.  --RoadDog

YOU CAN RETIRE TO CALIFORNIA WHERE you will know how to eat an artichoke.

Saturday, July 28, 2012

The Fratellos ' "Chelsea Dagger"

And, speaking of music, WXRT is playing "Chelsea Dagger" by the Fratellos at this moment, 7:32 AM.  I just played it last night at the Fox Lake Legion.  I'd never heard the song before until the Blackhawks made that great run to the Stanley Cup in 2010.  This was the song they played after every goal.

I went looking for the album, well, CD, and couldn't find it anywhere.  However, right before they won the Cup, we did find it in a used record/CD store in Columbia, Missouri, and played it all the way to the Lake of the Ozarks where we were nearly the only ones cheering the Hawks on to that final win, but we were heard, believe me.

Played it almost all the next day (the rest of the album is great as well).  It was a magic time for Chicago fans.

We later joined the Illinois Route 66 Tour and after the Saturday Hall of Fame Induction and dinner, I sang it at the karaoke show in the lounge.  Now, I knew I would have no problem with the "Duh, duhda, duh, duudah, duh" part, but knew the rest would be bad. It was.  That guys sings real fast and I don't read so fast.

Didn't Stop Me None.  --RoadDog

July 16th a Rough Day for Music

I was just looking at obituaries and saw that quite a few musicians of note, especially to me, died on this one day.

Kitty Wells, 92, country music "It Wasn't God Who Made Honky Tonk Angels"

Jon Lord, 71, organist with Deep Purple and Whitesnake.

Bob Babbitt, 74, Motown house band Funk Brothers.  Played on 200 Top 40 hits.

I'll go into more detail on my Cooter's History Blog, but since this blog is based so much on music, I felt it necessary to mention. 

Sad to Lose These People.  --RoadDog

Aye, 'Tis a Beach Life for Me-- Part 5

I devoured two Britt's Donuts at Carolina Beach and feeling sorry for the two guys working behind the window where you see them making those great morsels because it was fairly warm at the long counter and had to be really hot back there.

Love Them Britt's.  On my Roadlog Blog, I have just finished 100 North Carolina Icons and one was Krispy Kreme, which are great, BUT NOT COMPARED TO A BRITT'S!!!  I'd also have included Britt's on the list.  That's how much of a fan I am.

They are open 8 AM to 10 PM until Labor Day, seven days a week.

I wanted to eat more, but cut myself off at two.  Hey, I don't get there that often.  You enjoy when you can.

What Would Homer Say?  --RoadDog

YOU CAN RETIRE TO CALIFORNIA WHERE the fastest part of your commute to work is backing down your driveway.

Friday, July 27, 2012

Top 15 Fast Food Restaurants 2011

From Yahoo! News

Ranked by sales.  The graphic also gave the number of locations which was also of interest.  Sales in billions of dollars.

You'll never guess #1.

First number sales, second is locations.

1.  McDonald's   $34.2 // 14,098
2.  Subway $11.4 // 24,722
3.  Starbucks  9.75 // 10,787
4.  Wendy's 8.5 // 5,876
5.  Burger King  8.4// 7,231

6.  Taco Bell 6.8 // 5,674
7.  Dunkin' Donuts  5.92 // 7,015
8.  Pizza Hut  5.4 // 7,595
9.  KFC  4.5 // 4,793
10.  Chick-Fil-A  4.05 // 1,600

11.  Sonic Drive In  3.68 // 3,531
12.  Domino's Pizza  3.4 //  4.907
13.  Panera Bread  3.30 //  1480
14.  Arby's  3.03 //  3,484
15.  Jack in the Box  3.01 //  2,221

Now You Know.  --RoadDog

YOU CAN RETIRE TO CALIFORNIA WHERE  you make over $250,000 a year and you still cannot afford to buy a house.

Thursday, July 26, 2012

Every Blooming THing-- End of July

I was definitely figuring that most everything in the yard would be dead when I finally for back from my two week trip, July 10th to 24th, or, at the very least, all the flowers in containers.  I mean, I really watered them heavily every day the last three before I left and even put the containers together in the front and back of the house so Liz could water them.

I found out she never watered them once as she is paranoid about how much water we have left in the well, although at almost 300 feet, I think we'll be ok, even if neighbors continue to water their grass.  Hey, grass will come back after a drought, except maybe that located over the septic lines (I found out this the hard way).

Other than the three container vegetable plants, everything survived.  Fortunately, we did have a little rain on several occasions while gone.

Sure Glad the Yard Pulled Through.  --RoadDog

Tuesday, July 24, 2012

Got Home

After eight states and over 2700 miles, I got home earlier rthis evening.  Sure enjoyed myself visiting with family, enjoying the beach, and doing up Cincinnati and northern Kentucky.

I'll be reporting on it.

Blogging All the Way.  --RoadDog

So, What Happened to the Ferrets?

The last contest for the animal shelters here in Illinois, we, at Save-A-Pet were wiped out by the ferrets.  However, for some reason, I see thart they are not trying here in the new contest.  I guess because they can't win under the rules.

However, I would like to point out, that even though we couldn't win last contest, we still played.

Come On Ferrets, Get a Backbone!!  --RoadDog

Monday, July 23, 2012

Congratulations to Ron Santo

It is about time he got into the Hall of Fame.  Should have been in many years ago.

Unfortunately, he had to die before the voters realized it.

Definitely one of the two Mr. Cubs in my book.

Why, I even wore my Cubs hat for the first time when he died and will have to wear it again in honor of his acceptance at long last.

And, I Don't Take Wearing a Cubs Hat Lightly.  I Had Said I'd never Wear It Until They Finally Get Into the World Series.  --RoadDog

Thursday, July 19, 2012

Aye, 'Tis a Beach Life for Me-- Part 4

Next, we parked by the old Mack's store by US-421 near the boardwalk area of Carolina Beach.  I was somewhat surprised to see they didn't charge for parking.  Most beaches seem to do that.

It was a short walk past the gazebo where concerts are held Thursdays during the summer to the main boardwalk.  After years of decline, Carolina Beach has certainly turned the corner but still has some spots that are a bit rough.  It still has the old honky tonk feel to it with quite a few beach bars, including my all-time favorite, the Silver Dollar Saloon which first opened in the 50s.

Of course, first target was Britt's Donuts which has been there since the 20s or 30s.  Nothing fancy, just some of the best glazed donuts you'll ever eat.  The long counter and method of making the morsels hasn't changed at all as far back as I remember.  It being a warm day, I felt kind of sorry for the two guys in back making the donuts.

What has changed is the price, which now is 90 cents apiece.  I got six for $5 for the three of us and then did some time travel back to when I was a young boy in the 50s.  As I finished the second one, I saw that the best deal was a dozen for $7.  I was about to ask if we could get six more for the two bucks when my mom beat me to it. 

So, we had doughnuts for tomorrow!!!  The only problem with a Britt's donut is that it is only good when eaten right at the place or within a couple hours.  But that was back in the days before microwaves, so we'll see how that does it. 

The Oven Sure Didn't Work.  --RoadDog

Tuesday, July 17, 2012

Aye, 'Tis a Beach Life for Me-- Part 3

Drove back past Fort Fisher to Kure Beach and took a ride along the ocean to a cottage that was built in the 1930s and looks just like the one my grandparents had on Carolina Beach's Southern Extension that was destroyed by Hurricane Hazel in 1954.  I mean, there was not a trace left of it.  It is a rental and we've thought of renting it or looking at it to see if the interior is the same, not that I would remember because I was just three when Hazel came a-knockin', well, slammin'..

Next, we drove by where the old cottage was in Carolina Beach.  A cottage has since been built on the site, which is oceanfront.  There is a bit of Civil War history in front of the cottage.  The Civil War blockade-runner Beauregard was run aground and destroyed in 1863.  The upperworks of it can be still seen at low tide.

My Great Aunt Annie Mae had a cottage directly across the street that her family has since sold.  We used to stay there a lot after Hurricane Hazel.  The downstairs was enclosed and was part sand where we used a shower head to clean off the salt and sand when returning from the beach.  Sand that has not had sunlight is not pleasant, let me tell you.  That old "Under the Boardwalk" song is so wrong.  I can't imagine a worse place to be.

A Walk On the Boardwalk and Britt's Next.  --RoadDog

Monday, July 16, 2012

Aye, 'Tis a Beach Life for Me-- Part 2

Every day, I go for a walk along the beach, wading in the water and collecting shells, especially the rounded ones I call "lima beans."  Some days you find them, some days you don't.


The day of the stoplights and traffic as we drove to Fort Fisher, south of Wilmington about fifty miles away.  Wilmington is a horrible place to drive any time because of its traffic, but especially bad on the weekends when you have people going to and returning to the beach.

Heard a talk on Fort Fisher's Major James Reilly, "Old Taratula" and took a guided tour around the fort.  Saw the 32-pounder coastal cannons fired. 

Then went to the North Carolina Aquarium at Fort Fisher and that place is quite impressive and big.  Enjoyed watching the seahorses and say their #1 attraction, the albino alligator.

Then drove down to the end of Federal Point, by the "Rocks" which were built to close off New Inlet.  We used to do a lot of crabbing and sand fiddler-chasing there.  This is also the southern terminus of US Highway 421.  Enjoy the signage for the beginning and end.

More to Come.  --RoadDog

Sunday, July 15, 2012

Aye, 'Tis a Beach Life for Me-- Pt. 1


Recovering from the long drive and enjoying the new deck at the Topsail Arms at the south end of Topsail Island.  Took a long walk along the beach and found quite a few interesting shells and the "lima bean" stones.

Did some wading in the water and pitched the umbrella for some beach reading.


Another walk on the beach.  The waves have created a nice tidal pool which is always a special place.

Highlight of today was the arrival of my Aunt Louise, Cousin Debbie and her husband Rob,  Aunt Louise still lives in Mt. Olive.  Rob and Debbie are now from Petersburg, Virginia.  Rob is retired and Debbie still works.  We had a great lunch that Mom prepared of shrimp and crabcakes.

Rob is a history buff like me and says his house is on land that was formerly City Point which was the huge Union supply depot during the Civil War.  he once found a canteen while digging in his yard.  Later this month he goes on an archaeological dig at the site of an early 19th century pottery place.

After they left, I went over to Surf City's Sound Side Park where the Uncle Harry Band was playing at the band shell.  On the way back, I picked up a two-liter bottle of Cheerwine pop, a NC classic.

A Bad Day at the Beach Is....   --RoadDog

Thursday, July 12, 2012

On the Road

I sure put on the miles the last two days, traveling 1,170 miles through six states on Il-47, I-74, I-70, US-40, I-77, I-40, US-17, NC 210 and NC-50.

Got to eat at one of the two places I had wanted to, Skyline Chili north of Dayton, Ohio.  Unfortunately, Snappy Lunch in Mount Airy, NC, is closed for the week.  So, none of those great porkchop sandwiches for me.

Gas went lower, the whole trip.  Strange how the farther you get from Chicago, the cheaper the gas gets.  The highest at Woodstock, Illinois, at $3.80. It stayed between $3w60 and $3.70 most of the wat from Woodstock to Morris.   The very lowest was in Mount Airy at $3.07.  Gas was actually reasonable in West Virginia for a change.

Spent Tuesday night at the Super 8 Motel in Zanesville, Ohio.  My treat was driving the 24-mile US-40/National Road from Zanesville to Cambridge, one of my favorite stretches of road anywhere.

Rained much of the way through North Carolina.

Taking a Day Off Today. --RoadDog

Monday, July 9, 2012

So, It's Come to This

Sad to say, but earlier today, we pulled the boat out of the water here on the Chain of Lakes here in northeastern Illinois.  In our 27 years of boating we've never had to pull the boat out because of low water.

The water level all over keeps dropping and our boat is in a very shallow channel by Dino's Den and 92 East to begin with.  I'm going to be out of town for awhile and am worried that when I return, the boat will be stuck in the mud if this drought continues.

Plus, I have been watering the trees and plants a whole lot of late, trying to tide them over until rain finally comes.  Once I'm out of town, I don't see much hope for anything in the yard unless we get some welcome rainfall.

Come On Rain!!  --RoadDog

Spending That Last 4th of July Weekend

This was a bonus 4th of July with celebrations both weekends and even on the real, authentic day.  We spent the first three days fighting some really hot days, but it finally broke yesterday.


Boating and breakfast on the boat at McDonald's in Fox Lake..  NTN at Donovan's and some good national rankings, seven Top Twenties.  Later visits to the Hideout by Petite Lake and Captain's Quarters by Fox Lake.


Third straight day over 100 degrees.  The Fox Lake Bump as gas jumps 20 cents for the second time in a week.  Hey, let's get all their money we can!!  Stormy Monday and later karaoke at the Legion.


Temps only in the "cool" 90s.  Recorded WXRT's Saturday Morning Flashback to 1968.  Great tunes and memories.  Planning on taking the boat out to watch the fireworks on Fox Lake, but reports called for a storm.  Drove instead to Captain's Quarters but way too crowded.  Ended up having an excellent view of them from Stormy Monday.


Bob Stroud did his Rock and Roll Roots show on "Living In the USA."  Had that great pizza at All Sports in McCullom Lake and then drove to Wauconda and sat out on the deck and saw Terry Spizzirri and Gregg Spizzirri put on a great show at Docks on a bluff overlooking Bang's Lake.

On the way home, stopped at Route 12 Bar and Grill on the way home and listened to Just Jake singing and playing that guitar which he does so well.

Always a Good Time Around Here.  --RoadDog

Summer of '72-- Part 9

This is the last installment of this trip back until Bob Stroud goes back for another round August 5th.  Enjoy the memories and, if you are old enough to remember these tunes (I was 21), tune in at the Drive http://www.wdrv.com/ from 7 to 10 AM.

LAYLA--  DEREK & THE DOMINOES--  An interesting market move by Atlantic-Atco, they rereleased a record that was over a year old.  The first time around it kind of stiffed out in and edited version.  This time it was a top ten single and on its way up the charts 40 years ago.
JOIN TOGETHER--  WHO--  Brand new 45.

BITTER BLUE-- CAT STEVENS--  From his latest release, Teaser and the Firecat.  A good deep track. A month ago, "Morning Has Broken" from it was the #1 song.  (Bitter Blue" is one of m favorite Cat Stevens songs.)

OUT OF SPACE--  BILLY PRESTON--  #1 song in Chicago.  An instrumental.  (And this guy played with the Beatles in their later years a s a group.)

Stroud also plays a little bit of a song as he comes back from commercial break, so, it's like getting a bonus.  These are some of the songs he played.

DAY BY DAY--  The theme from the Broadway Musical "Godspell."

LAST NIGHT I DIDN'T GET TO SLEEP AT ALL--  FIFTH DIMENSION--  a real hit-making machine.
SONG SUNG BLUE--  NEIL DIAMOND--  (And, like he says, "Everybody needs one."

Now, I've Got That Diamond Song in My Head.  Rats!!  --RoadDog

YOU CAN RETIRE TO CALIFORNIA WHERE you make over $250,000 and you still cannot afford to buy a house.

Saturday, July 7, 2012

What's In Frank Costello's Vault?

Yesterday, while inside the bar at Stormy Mondays (too hot on the deck out by the lake), a customer came in and wanted to know why there was a big safe on the floor by the bar.  Terri, the bartender said that they had found it while renovating the place, but no one  knew the combination.

This got us to thinking back on that great TV show when Geraldo Rivera  broke into "Al Capone's Vault."  Perhaps money, maybe jewels?  Hey, Al Capone and those gangsters used to hang out here on the Chain of Lakes and had interests here, although the safe definitely looked to be of a more modern variety.

Sharon Nash came in and since she was one of the owners, along with Frank Costello, back when it was Costello's Pub/Grub, I asked her if she knew about it.  She did and said they had put it in.  She never was able to easily open it and also couldn't remember the combination.  Perhaps a few numbers.

She called Frank who now lives in a small town south of Springfield, Illinois.  He said he also couldn't remember the combination, but gave the best guess he had.

Then, we all gathered around to see if Sharon could open it.  Anticipation everywhere.  No success.  Kora tried.  Being a teacher, she certainly knew how to open a combination.  But no luck either.

We're Still Anticipating.  --RoadDog

It's All Beer to Me-- Part 2

In case you're wondering abbout that "other" beer company.  All sales numbers in millions unless otherwise noted.


Bud Light--  $1.4 billion
Budweiser--  $595
Bud Light Lime--  $115
Bud Light Platinum--  $59  (Haven't heard of this one.)
Budweiser Select 55-- $59
Budweiser Select--  $45  (If I gotta drink one of their beers, these last two are the ones of preference.)
Bud Ice--  $36
Bud Light Chelada--  $18


Busch Light--  $219
Busch--  $154
Busch NA--  $13


Natural Light--  $271
Natural Ice--  $82

I don't mind these last two brands either.


Michelob Ultra--  $240
Shock Top Belgian White Ale--  $45
Michelob Light--  $29
Michelob Amber Bock--  $10
Michelob Ultra Lime Cactus--  $10

Together, these two beer giants have 80% of the market.

Fireworks Tonight.  None of This for Me.  --RoadDog

It's All Beer to Me-- Part 1

From the July 6th Chicago Tribune "2 behemoths at lager heads."

Last week, Anheuser-Busch InBev announced that they were buying Corona-maker Grupo Modelo, the latest in the long trend of beer market consolidation which increases the hold of the two major makers AB InBev and Chicago-based MillerCoors.

The Tribune had a huge graphic showing the brands of he two giants as well of sales for the year ending June 10th.  All numbers in millions.


Miller Lite-- $659
Miller High Life-- $173
Miller Genuine Draft-- $88
Miller 64--   $32
Miller Genuine Draft Light 64--  $30
Miller High Life Light--  $27


Coors Light--  $757
Coors--  $75


Blue Moon Belgian White Ale--  $104
Blue Moon Seasonal Collection--  $38
Blue Moon Variety Pack--  $20

Keystone Light--  $135
Keystone Ice--  $11

Milwaukee's Best Light--  $56
Milwaukee's Best Ice--  $38
Milwaukee's Best--  $24

Icehouse--  $51

Foster's Lager--  $27
Foster's Premium Ale--  $10

Steel Reserve 211 High Gravity Lager $32

Leinekugel's Seasonal--$31

George Killian's Irish Red Lager--  $23

Molson Canadian--  $15

Mickey's Fine Malt Liquor--  $13

Peroni--  $10

I started with MillerCoors because that's my favorite if I have a choice.  Hey, around here is the bastion of Miller.  I sure did not know that Coors Lite sold more than Miller Lite.  Those are my two favorites and I must admit I can't taste the difference between the two.

Here's Suds in Your Eye.  --RoadDog

YOU CAN RETIRE TO PHOENIX WHERE the four sesasons are: tolerable, hot, really hot and "Are You Kidding Me!!"

Friday, July 6, 2012

What it Was Was the Los Mets

With I hat top to Andy Griffith.

A little while ago, while at Stormy Monday on Fox Lake here on the Chain of Lakes, I started watching our Chicago Cubs play some team called Los Mets.  I know that was their name because it was on the front of their uniforms. 

I must admit that I have never heard of a MLB team called Los Mets.  I looked it upon the standings and there was no team by that name.  Hell, I even Yahooed and there wasn't a team by that name. Probably should have Googled, but I'm a bit spiteful to those guys.

What I thought it might be is a new expansion National League team from Mexico as I know of a band called Los Lobos which is Hispanic.

Anyway, the Cubs and Los Mets were tied 2-2 when we left and went to the Legion on Nippersink Lake for karaoke.  The Cubs went way up while we there and finally took an 8-3 lead when we got back home and I went downstairs to Margaritaville.

Good thing they had that many runs as they needed all of them.  Up 8-5 in the 9th, ace reliever Marmol came on and after one out, proceeded to walk the next three Los Mets batters and then a single made it 8-7.  A line drive caught by Marmol also doubled the guy off first and the Cubbies won over this new NL team. 

After doing some thinking about it, I think it must be some sort of Hispanic thing.

Who Are the Los Mets?  Inquiring minds Want to Know?  --RoadDog

How Hot and Dry Is It?

We are in the midst of quite the heat wave here in northeastern Illinois, with temps at 100 degrees and more the last two days and on its way there today.  And, that on top of a week in the 90s.  Some relief tomorrow with drop to 80s.  We've been staying inside a lot more than usual because of the heat.  And, we have a peristent drought.

Things are getting bad with water levels in our Chain of Lakes.  The Waerway Agency let the level down another foot and a half last fall, fearing spring floods.  Well, there was little snowfall this past winter and a dryer-than-usual spring, and now a severe drought.  Folks are wrecking props in the much shallower water.

I even hit bottom coming out of our channel and something that shouldn't have been there, but only dented the prop.  I was thinking just minutes beforehand that I had had no prop damage in about 15 years.  As a matter of fact, Monday, we will be taking the boat out of the water before I leave for North Carolina.  Liz won't go out when I'm not here and I figure by my return, we'll be stuck in the mud at the bottom of the channel at the rate we're going.

Fireworks have been cancelled in several area communities due to dry conditions.

Hot and Dry Here in Illinois.  --RoadDog

Summer of '72-- Part 8

Music on your radio and in your album collection July 1, 1972.  Friend Frank calls 1972 the best year of hislife, but wouldn't go into details.

I THINK I'M GOING TO KILL MYSELF--  ELTON JOHN-- From the #3 album on local charts, Honky Chateau.  A good deep track from side one.
ALONE AGAIN (NATURALLY)--  GILBERT O'SULLIVAN--  Brand new and one of the biggest hits of the summer and definitely his biggest-ever hit.  (Okay, got me humming it.  Thanks a lot!!)

YOU CAN LEAVE YOUR HAT ON--  RANDY NEWMAN--  From his new album, Sail Away, from side 2, the original version.  (Before old Joe "covered" it.)
SCHOOL'S OUT--  ALICE COOPER--  Brand new and just released. Title track from the album.  (And the name of our boat.  Thanks Alice.  Got any brownies?)

SMOKE ON THE WATER--  DEEP PURPLE--  Great albums out all summer, including Machine Head.
LEAN ON ME--  BILL WITHERS--  (The song that just WOULDN'T end.)

TROGLODYTE--  JIMMY CASTOR BUNCH--  Good for a couple two, three hits in the early 70s.  Their biggest hit.  (She was one of the Butt sisters.)
GOING DOWN--  Released in May, the self-titled album was now a couple months old.  (A real pleasure hearing this one that you usually don't hear too often.)

This Sunday, Stroud's Rock and Roll Roots Show Is Titled "Living in the USA."  --RoadDog

YOU CAN RETIRE TO PHOENIX WHERE  you know that "dry heat" is comprable to what hits you in the face when you open your oven door.

Thursday, July 5, 2012

Summer of '72-- Part 7

IN A BROKEN DREAM--  PYTHON LEE JACKSON--  A band out of Australia.  You're thinking to yourself that it sounds just like Rod Stewart.  Well, it is him on lead vocals.  The story goes that the band was in the U.K. and commissioned Rod Stewart to sing lead vocal on a few tracks they didn't feel their lead singer was right for.  The tracks remained unreleased until the summer of '72 when Stewart became the biggest thing on the planet.  They released it and it became a mini hit here in the states.  Both powerhouse stations here in Chicago played it.

SUFFRAGETTE CITY--  DAVID BOWIE--  No one knew just what to make of the latest incarnation of David Bowie and the Spoders from Mars.  Ziggy Stardust was about two weeks old now.

TAKE IT WASY--  EAGLES--  New band off a self-titled album.  Their first hit.  (And good ol' Route 66 at that corner in Winslow, Arizona.)
CHUG ALL NIGHT--  EAGLES--  Something back then that we believed we could do all the time.  .  A deep track from that album.  (I could chug maybe one now...well, probably not.)

CONQUISTADOR--  PROCUL HARUM--  From the album Procul Harum Live at the Edmonton Symphony Orchestra.  Great live version of a song from their first album in 1967.
HOT & NASTY--  HUMBLE PIE--  Smokin' is their latest album and first without Peter Frampton.

ROCKET MAN--  ELTON JOHN--  His current hit song.  (Not to be confused with "Space Oddity."  "Can you hear me Major Tom?")

Bringing Back the Memories.  --RoadDog

YOU CAN RETIRE TO PHOENIX where you'll have 100 recipes for Mexican food.

Wednesday, July 4, 2012

Movie Scratches: Lockdown-- Stooges-- Avengers-- battleship

A dog's-eye view of current movies.

21.  LOCKDOWN--  4-25--  FOX LAKE $4--  Smart remark champion hero saves the president's daughter.

22.  THE THREE STOOGES--  5-2--  FOX LAKE--  $4--  Blues brothers: The Early Years.  Nyuk, Nyuk!!

23.  THE AVENGERS--  5-9--  FOX LAKE  $4--  Wisecrackin' Iron Man and attitude-challenged Hulk do a number on Loki.

24.  BATTLESHIP--  5-23--  FOX LAKE $4--  A whole lot to go through for a chicken buritto.  The Mighty Mo to the rescue. 

Must Remember to wear Coat to Theater inthe Summer.  --RoadDog

YOU CAN RETIRE TO PHOENIX WHERE you can drive four hours in one direction and never leave town.

Movie Scratches: 21-- Wrath-- Reunion-- Cabin

A dog's-eye view of current movies.

17.  21 JUMP STREET--  3-28--  FOX LAKE $4--  What a whacky pair back in those good old high school days.

18.  WRATH OF THE TITANS--  4-4--  FOX LAKE $4--  Real brotherly love with father issues.  Let's have some fun!!

19.  AMERICAN REUNION--  4-11--  FOX LAKE $4--  13th reunion and all works out well for the mostly grown ups other than Stiffler.  Who has a 13th reunion?

20.  THE CABIN IN THE WOODS--  4-25--  FOX LAKE $4--  A horror story of a different sort. Actually pulling for the monsters at the end.

I hate Too Cold Theaters.  --RoadDog

Tuesday, July 3, 2012

Every Blooming THing-- Early July

The daylillies and tall phlox are taking forefront on the color front.  Plus, most of the mums are in bloom but I will soon have to cut them back so I'll have fall bloom, the most important one.  Hostas are putting out their flowers as well.

Really getting tired of watering with this drought we're having.  I keep the perennials, annuals and bushes watered.  The only trees I water are the birches which I found out the hard way back in the heat wave and drought of 1988, that they die when conditions get like this.

As far as the yard, the only grass I water is over the septic lines.  I also found out the hard way eight years ago that grass over the lines does not come back after extended drought.  The rest of the grass greened up quickly when the drought broke, but it took me three years to get the septic line grass growing again.

The Japanese beetles, the little varmints, are back again.

I Hate Those Guys.  --RoadDog

Summer of '72-- Part 6

Continuing with the music from that summer 40 years ago.  July 1, 1972.

WILLING--  LITTLE FEAT--  Sailing Shoes was released a few months earlier, their second album produced by Ted Templeman who was also busy working with another fairly new group, the Doobie Brothers.  One of the great Lowell George compositions.  Little Feat is one of the most underappreciated groups by the masses; their loss.  (In total agreement here all you Dixie Chickens.)

I NEED YOU--  AMERICA--  Current hit following "Horse With No Name" off their debut album.
SANDMAN--  AMERICA-- deep track off their debut album in the Top Ten-selling albums here in Chicago.

LONG COOL WOMAN--  HOLLIES--  Brand new and would go on to become one of their biggest-selling  singles with the great Allen Clarke on vocals.

HOW DO YOU DO--  MOUTH & McNEILL--  New in your radio and following in the footsteps of other Dutch bands before them like the Shocking Blue,  George Baker Selection and Tee Set.  A curious little record that sold a million copies.  (And, one of my favorites that I hadn't heard in a really long time.  Remember "My Little Green Bag" and "Ma Belle Amie?"
TIGHTWIRE--  LEON RUSSELL--  His latest from the album Carny, a couple weeks old at this time.

ALL DOWN THE LINE--  ROLLING STONES--  Deep track from their new album.
TUMBLING DICE--  ROLLING STONES--  Current 45 from the great Exile on Main Street double vinyl release.

Bringing Back Memories?  --RoadDog

YOU CAN RETIRE TO PHOENIX WHERE you've experienced condensation on your hiney from the hot water in your toilet bowl.

Monday, July 2, 2012

Summer of '72-- Part 5

Yesterday, Bob Stroud did the second part of his annual four part Summer Show for 1972, featuring what was playing on the radio (here in Chicago WLS and WCFL) and in our record collections for July 1, 1972.  Of course, I just had to listen to it (and record it on cassette tapes for cruising around in the '85 Firebird and '03 Malibu which both still have cassette players).

July 1, 1972, I was in the summer session (as in school) at the University of Georgia, preparing to transfer back to Northern Illinois University.  I especially was enjoying the Civil War class with Dr. Emory Thomas who has written several books on the war.  Best part was his sandbox recreations of battles.  Hey, Civil War and sandboxes, what more can a college boy ask for?

BRANDY--  LOOKING GLASS--  Debuted on the local charts 40 years ago this week.  (And still one of my favorites.)
HARVEST--  NEIL YOUNG--  Still one of the most-played albums in our collections even though at this time it was 3-4 months old, the title track.

TOO LATE TO TURN BACK NOW--  CORNELIUS BROTHERS & SISTER ROSE--  A great little pop-soul original.
AFTER MIDNIGHT--  Latest 45.

ONE WAY OUT--  ALLMAN BROTHERS--From the great Eat a Peach album, one of the top-tenselling albums  here.   (Always reminds me of Lynyrd Skynyrd's "Gimme Three Steps" for some reason.

Just Getting Into It.  --RoadDog

YOU CAN RETIRE TO PHOENIX where you are willing to park three blocks away and walk because you found shade.

Three Days-- Nine Bars-- One Parade-- One Band

Kicked off our extended Fourth of July celebration Friday.  As usual, it was good times in the area.


No boating today, but did hit two places on the Chain Crawl and had our passports stamped.  Met Kevin and Kelly, who are also on the Crawl, at the Lagoon Lounge on US-12 in Fox Lake for a couple three beers.  It shares the lagoon with McDonald's.

Then, we actually found that the NAC (National Athletic Club) on Fox Lake was open and we high-tailed it over there for a couple more.  They have been closed the last six times we've wanted to go.  It is a private club and only open sometimes.  It goes way back, being founded in the 1880s.

Then to the usual Friday spots, Stormy Monday on Fox Lake and the American Legion on Nippersink Lake.


Drove to Twin Lakes, Wisconsin, about ten miles away, and enjoyed Ultimate Bloody Marys at Main Street and watched the 4th of July parade outside the place.  Then to Donovan's Reef and ended up at the Wilmot Riverside Bar and Grill.  We haven't been back but once since Dave and Mar sold it a couple years ago.  It used to be Mar's Trading Post Inn and the foundation of the place goes back to the 1840s when it actually was a trading post.


Drove over to McCullon Lake to All Sports Bar and had one of the best pizzas around for $5 and $5 pitchers of Miller Lite.  Then to Captain's Quarters on Fox Lake for the Average Joe Band outside.  Met our friends from Crabapple Island.

GoodTimes in the Area.  --RoadDog