Friday, November 28, 2008

On the Road-- Cincinnati

Saturday, the 22nd, Denny and I met Jennifer and Pat at the Echo, a great breakfast place dating to the 30s. I had a famous GERMAN SAUSAGE goetta breakfast plate. Goetta is a Cincinnati specialty made by simmering pork parts in stock with spices, onions, and oats. This is mighty good.

We went to the 1800s observatory and then downtown where I saw the location of the Flim Building where my favorite all-time TV show "WKRP in Cincinnati" supposedly took place. I always had the wrong building pegged as the site.

Took a tour of the great art deco edifice, Union Terminal, and the Sign Museum after that. See for more on these places.

We ate at Terry's for dinner and had some great burgers. Although this is a new place, it looks like it dates from the 20s.

After Pat and Jennifer left, Denny and I hit two more places for NTN, Coaster's and 2 Putt, and then saw the Goshorn Brothers at 20 Mile Station, which dates back to the 1840s, and, was twenty miles from Cincinnati. The Goshorn Brothers were members of one of my favorite groups, Pure Prairie League.

Mighty Good Time in the Queen City. --RoadDog

Doing That Thanksgiving Thing

Had a great family dinner at Mom's place with Bo, Jeff, Gayle, and Samantha from Graham's side of the family. Also, Alex and Annsley (my sister's children), Julie (my sister), my brother Bob and wife Judy, and Mom.

Mom made up a great turkey, Julie crab dip, Gayle macaroni and cheese and collards, and Judy sweet potatoes and pumpkin pie. I didn't make anything, but helped eat it. Ate way too much.

We also were celebrating Julie's 52nd and Bo's 74th birthday.

Earlier, I had gone over to K-Mart which was open, and bought a DVD player for $15 after a $15 rebate. I was shocked to see them asking $10 for a string of clear Italian lights. Mom needed two new strands, but I wasn't going to pay that price. I got two 100-light strands at Walgreen's for $4, much more reasonable.


At least it wasn't at 4 AM or some horribly early time. But, we still went out at 10:30 AM. Lots of people out and about for some reason.

Went back to Walgreen's which had cassette bricks of ten for $5 instead of the usual $7. It is getting harder and harder to find cassettes, which I still use for recording. Eventually I am sure I won't be able to find them anywhere. Thanks a lot PROGRESS.

Belks at Berkeley Mall was having some really great sales and I bought quite a few items and an ECU sweatshirt at Penney's.

Had a nice family meal at McCall's out on the US-70 Bypass. It was buffet, but I concentrated on BBQ and cole slaw as well as the Calabash shrimp.

The Way to Spend a Thanksgiving. --RoadDog

Monday, November 24, 2008

On The Road-- Home to Cincinnati

This last Friday, I left for my Thanksgiving trip back to North Carolina to be with family.

I took the usual way to avoid the Chicago hassle, Illinois-47 all the way to I-74 by Champagne, and then east through Indianapolis to Cincinnati, where I met up with my buddy Denny.

Gas was still $2 along Il-47 in the northern part, but dropped to $1.88 in Morris and remained in the $1.60 to $1.70 range most of the rest of the way. Never expected to see gas under $2 again so will enjoy it until Big Oil sends it back up to $4-plus next spring.

Friday night, we did some NTNing at three places: Blue Goose, Peg's and Bargos. We're both hooked on NTN.

Had planned to get some of Cincy's famous chili at a Skyline Chili place, but arrived at 11:01 and they closed at 11. Had to settle on a nearby White Castle. Oh well.

No Chili for Me!! --RoadDog

Thursday, November 20, 2008

Where Were You October 26, 1972?-- Part 2

Continuing with the songs being played on Chicago's WLS and WCFL, both AM stations.

HONKY CAT-- ELTON JOHN-- just falling off the charts
I'LL BE AROUND-- SPINNERS-- some of the spectacular Philadelphia Soul

GARDEN PARTY-- RICK NELSON & THE STONE CANYON BAND--Little Ricky Nelson also got started back in the 50s. James Brown was still recording as well and had started back in the 50s.

BURNIN' LOVE--ELVIS PRESLEY-- the third 50s artist still in the charts in 1972-- all still going strong.
BEAUTIFUL SUNDAY-- DANIEL BOONE-- The Number One Song from this date, 36 years ago. English singer-songwriter who swore he was a direct descendant of Daniel Boone. A one-hit wonder.

A great Stroud quote from the show: "Isn't it amazing how much great music was out at one time. Every time I do a Time Warp, it always astounds me that one particular date in time can give you so much great music. It was a feeding frenzy. Everybody creatively feeding off everybody else back in the era."

Great Memories in These Time Warps. Thanks, Bob. --RoadDog

Wednesday, November 19, 2008

Where Were You October 26, 1972?

Back on Oct. 26th, Bob Stroud Time warped to that date in 1967 and the same date in 1972.

I was a senior at Northern Illinois University in Dekalb, Illinois, while my family lived in Dunwoody, Georgia. I was taking all these education classes and getting ready to student teach in the spring of '73.

Most of the courses were fairly worthless, but the observations were of great use. I finally started getting mostly "A"s for grades. Pretty easy stuff.

Here are the songs playing in Chicago on this date. Stroud's comments follow.

ROCKIN' PNEUMONIA AND THE BOOGIE WOOGIE FLU-- JOHNNY RIVERS-- Covering an old Huey "Piano" Smith and the Clowns classic.
WITCHY WOMAN-- EAGLES-- Their second hit.

VENTURA HIGHWAY-- AMERICA-- just breaking into the local charts
USE ME-- BILL WITHERS-- Mick Jagger would cover this on one of his nineties albums.

LISTEN TO THE MUSIC-- DOOBIE BROTHERS-- From their second album and the first time most of us had heard of this band.
ELECTED-- ALICE COOPER-- In 1972, the election was between Nixon and McGovern. From album "Million Dollar Baby."

COULDN'T I JUST TELL YOU-- TODD RUNDGREN-- From his current album "Something, Anything." Follow up to "I Saw the Light."

More to Come. --RoadDog

Tuesday, November 18, 2008

Fast-Falling Real Estate Prices

My friend Frank has been watching prices falling in Cape Coral, Florida, and I must admit, they are something else. You can get a condo for anywhere from $40,000 to $80,000 and a regular house, even one on a channel, for around $100,000 to $150,000. Things are really bad there with so many houses being owned by banks outright.

Almost gets me to thinking about getting a second place, but I sure don't want the hassle, and really don't think I can afford it. Not so much about the initial cost, but the upkeep and taxes.

Came across an article about the ten places in the US with the fastest-falling real estate prices.

10. Salem, Oregon
9. Port Saint Lucie, Fl
8. Visalia, Ca
7. Miami, Fl
6. Orlando, Fl
5. El Centro, Ca
4. Bakersfield, Ca
3. Cumberland, Md
2. Yuma, Az
1. Virginia Beach, Va

If prices are that low in Cape Coral, what must they be in these places?

Thinking, Just Thinking. --RoadDog

JSS: Christmas Decs-- Bears-Packer Party Sunday-- No More Ugly Static-- Cleaning the Basement-- NIU Football On TV Again

JSS-- Just Some Stuff

1. CHRISTMAS DECS-- Cold today, but sunny, so will brave the frozen tundra and start putting up the outside Christmas decorations. I'll be leaving town for awhile Friday and would like to have them up by Thanksgiving. Smattering of snow last night, but no accululation. Not much fun putting decs up with snow around.

2. BEARS-PACKER PARTY SUNDAY-- Sunday, we had about 17 people over for the Bear-Packer game. Absolutely horrible game for us Bears fans. Talk about not bothering to show up!! Still, had our "juice," mostly of the rally variety. Then played Name That Tune afterwards.

3. NO MORE UGLY STATIC-- Last week, I was messing around with the corner TV in Margaritaville. This last June, lightning knocked out the VCR and I finally got around to putting the new DVD/VCR in a couple months ago. Ever since, there has been REALLY annoying static whenever the screen was really white or there were letters or numbers show. That is a bad combination for an athletic contest.

I was thinking perhaps I needed a new DVD or TV, but checked all the wires and connections. Still had static. I even tried new cords. Static.
Accidentally hit the menu for the new DVD/VCR and found that the problem was that I was set on Channel 3 and it needed to be Channel 4. Works great now.

Some might consider this a "Duh." But, in my defense, I JUST DIDN'T KNOW.

4. CLEANING THE BASEMENT-- One other good thing about the Bear-Packer party, it got me to clean up the basement for the first time in months. I was shocked to see there was actually a bar top. The big problem now is that I don't know where a lot of stuff is. It may have been messy before, but at least I had a reasonable idea where things were.

5. NIU FOOTBALL ON TV AGAIN-- The Northern Huskies will be on ESPN2 again for the third week in a row. Whatever happened to Saturday college football. Let's hope we do better against Kent State tonight than we did against Ball State (blowout) and Central Michigan (blowout-comeback-loss in overtime).

Just Some Thoughts-- RoadDog

Questions for retired Folks-- How many days in a week? Answer-- Seven. 6 Saturdays and a Sunday.

My Big Duh for Today...At Least, I Hope, But Still Lots of Time

This morning, after taking the garbage containers out to the street, I couldn't get the garage door to go back down. Somewhat mad because we had just installed a new opener in June (lightning knocked the other one out), I tried several different ways of getting the door closed. It would start like it was going to close, then, nothing.

At 9, I called the company who put it in, and talked to their secretary. After explaining the problem, she told me to go out and look to see if something was blocking the "electric" eye. It was, and now it works. THE OLD GARAGE DOOR OPENERS DID NOT HAVE AN ELECTRIC EYE. AT LEAST THAT'S MY STORY AND I'M STICKING TO IT.

There is one secretary who thinks I'm not the sharpest blade in the silverware drawer. I hope and imagine she gets lots of calls about this problem. It's like looking all over Lowe's for something, asking, and, of course, it is right behind you and the clerk gets that look upon their face.

No, DUH!!! Dumb Is As Dumb Does. --RoadDog

Questions for retired folks: When is a retiree's bedtime? Answer-- Three hours after they fall asleep on the couch.

Monday, November 17, 2008

Tenth Anniversary of Dad's Death-- November 16, 1998

Hard to believe that Dad has been gone for ten years as of yesterday. Seems like just a few years. I was really hoping that I'd be able to spend more time with him now that I am retired, but that was not to be.

East Carolina University lost one of its greatest fans and he still has a scholarship in the business school. A child of the depression, he was always mindful of his money.

And, Dad loved working in his yard and playing the stock market. I guess he wouldn't be so fond of it now.

Then there were those great stories he would tell. I sure wish I could reel them off like he did.

I can still see him sitting out on that sun porch.

I'll be visiting his grave next week.

While I was visiting Mom this past April, she showed me a manuscript Dad had typed which I imagine was part of a job application. I put it on another blog of mine, http;// Go to April 7, 2008. It is in three parts.

Interesting reading. My Dad was quite the go-getter.

Sure Glad I Had Him as My Father.

Saturday, November 15, 2008

It's a Country Thing, You Wouldn't Understand-- Part 3

After watching the Country Music Association's awards show, Wednesday. A few observations and thoughts.

I always wonder how they're so consistent of stopping the show right at 10 PM. That is some good planning for a live show.

Great to see Brad Paisley and Keith Urban playing "live" together for their song "Start a Band" for the first time at the beginning of the show.

Kelly Picklar just had to have been "poured" into that dress. Tina Turner and the Ikettes had "NOTHING" on her.

What will it take to get Alan Jackson to move from his spot in front of the mike? Actually, as long as he keeps making great music like "Good Time," who cares? That would have to drive old Garth Brooks mad.

I have now heard the new Lady Antebellum song and need to hear their whole album. They could be the next great band. Congrats on NewArtist of the Year.

Brad Paisley has great sense of humor. I liked his comment to Martina McBride, "Great Pipes."


Kid Rock did his great "All Summer Long" after cheering on the Titans and wearing their jersey. This was a song that branched into all sorts of genres, including the pop and country charts as well as my Beach Music. It was a hard song to escape this summer. On our trip to North and South Carolina and Tennessee, we heard it at least once a day on various radio stations.

Great idea to put "Werewolves of London" and "Sweet Home Alabama" together with a new twist. I wonder if he was thing "Perfect Summer Song" when he made it.

EX-HOOTIE-- The NEW and the OLD

Now, he's chameleoned to country. A Hootie no more, Darius Rucker knows his "Don't Think I Don't Think About It" country stuff. And, I really liked him with that other band. I'll also have to get his album.

That was a great group up for best new artist. Besides Lady Antebellum, there was Rodney Atkins, James Otto, Jason Aldean,and kelly Picklar. Country definitely has a future with new folks like these coming up.

I would have liked to see Andy Griffith get up and sing with Brad Paisley on "Waiting On a Woman."

Very touching tribute to James W. Ponder, III by his wife. He was killed in Afghanistan June 28, 2005 and was the father of two girls. As Leslie Ponder said, "Music has the power to heal." And then the song by Carrie Underwood.

I would have liked to have seen something more done with Hall of Fame inductees Emmylou Harris, Tom T. Hall, Statler brothers, and Ernest "Pop" Stoneman (and I don't even know who he was or is).

Great performance by the Eagles on "Too Busy Being Fabulous" to close out the show.

TV Definitely Worth Watching. --RoadDog

Questions for retired folk: How many retirees does it take to change a light bulb? Answer-- Only one, but it might take all day.

Friday, November 14, 2008

JSS: Hawaii Quarter-- $2 Gas in Illinois?-- Cubbie Honors and A Goodby, Finally-- McCain's a Funny Guy

JSS-- Just Some Stuff

1. HAWAII QUARTER-- And I've been somewhat collecting these and always turn them over to look. And, finally, we reach the end of the run, but have we? The Hawaii state quarter is being issued, the last of 50 that have come out since 1999. Every ten weeks or so, we'd have to check to see if we had one. Is it the end? Nope. Now we're going to have the District of Columbia, Puerto Rico, US Virgin Islands, American Somoa, and the Northern Mariana Islands. Oh, well.

2. $2 GAS IN ILLINOIS?-- The Tribune reports that $2 gas ($1.99.9) was spotted in New Lenox, Illinois, the first sub-$2 price in the area since 2005. It was $2.16 in Fox Lake this morning.

Yesterday, my heart started beating wildly when I saw $1.99.9 in McHenry, but then realized that was with a car wash. Nasty people!!

3. CUBBIE HONORS AND A GOODBYE, FINALLY-- Congratulations to Cubs catcher Geovanny Soto who won the National League Rookie of the Year after that outstanding season. He is the 5th Cub in history to get the award. The others: Billy Wiliams in 1961, Kenny Hubbs in 1962, Jerome Walton in 1989, and Kerry Wood in 1998.

Also, congratulations to Cub manager Lou Piniella who won the National League Manager of the Year Award.

While on the subject of Kerry Wood, he's on his way out after a generally disappointing career on the North Side. We were definitely hoping for better from him and all those dollars he earned on the disabled list.

4. McCAIN'S A FUNNY GUY-- Senator McCain was on the Jay Leno Show earlier this week and had a few good ones.

"I've been sleeping like a baby. Sleep two hours, wake up and cry. Sleep two hours. Wake up and cry."

The morning after the election "I didn't read the newspaper. I knew what it was going to say."

"Arizona may be the only state where mothers don't tell their children that some day they will grow up to become the president of the United States. Barry Goldwater, Morris Udall, Bruce Babbitt, and I ran twice."

Just Some Stuff-- RoadDog

Questions for retired folk: What's the biggest gripe for retirees? Answer-- There's not enough time to get everything done.

It's a Country Thing, You Wouldn't Understand-- Part 2

Country's top-selling ever albums/CDs had 4 by Garth Brooks, 3 by the Dixie Chicks, 2 by Shania Twain, 2 by the husband wife team of Tim McGraw/Faith Hill, 1 soundtrack, 1 by Billy Ray Cyrus and 1 by LeAnn Rimes.

I have the Top Nine and 11, 13, and 15.

The Top 15 Best-Selling Country Albums of All Time with year and sales rounded off:

1. Come On Over-- Shania Twain-- 1997-- 15.5 million
2. Ropin' the Wind-- Garth Brooks-- 1991-- 9.6 million
3. No Fences-- Garth Brooks-- 9 million
4. Wide Open Spaces-- Dixie Chicks-- 1998-- 8.7million
5. Fly-- Dixie Chicks-- 8.3 million
6. The Hits-- Garth Brooks-- 1994-- 7.8 million
7. The Woman in Me-- Shania Twain-- 1995-- 7.6 million
8. Some Gave All-- Billy Ray Cyrus-- 1992-- 7.5 million
9. Oh Brother, Where Art Thou?-- Soundtrack-- 2001-- 7.4 million
10. Some Hearts-- Carrie Underwood-- 2005-- 6.6 million
11. Breath-- Faith Hill-- 1999--6.5 million
12. Double Live-- Garth Brooks-- 1998-- 6 million
13. Not a Moment Too Soon-- Tim McGraw-- 1994-- 6 million
14. Blue-- LeAnn Rimes-- 1996-- 6 million
15. Home-- Dixie Chicks-- 2002-- 6 million

In this world of downloads, these records will probably stand for a long time, perhaps forever.

As I Sit Here Listening to 10CC. How Country is That? --RoadDog

Questions for Retired Folk: Why don't retirees mind be called Senior? Answer-- It comes with a discount.

It's a Country Thing, You Wouldn't Understand

Congratulations to the winners of the 2008 CMA, Country Music Association, Awards.

Entertainer of the Year-- Kenny Chesney
Male Vocalist-- Kenny Chesney

I would have gone with Brad Paisley for those two. Chesney is great, but Paisley just blows folks away when he is not playing practical jokes on his cohorts.

Female-- Carrie Underwood
New Artist-- Lady Antebellum
Vocal Group-- Rascal Flats
Vocal Duo-- Sugarland
Album "Troubadour"-- George Strait
Single-- "I Saw God Today" --George Strait
Music Video-- "Waitin' on a Woman" Brad Paisley and Andy Griffith I really like this one.
Musician of the Year-- Mac McAnally-- One of my favorites who often works with Jimmy Buffett.

Get Some Country in Your Soul. --RoadDog

Wednesday, November 12, 2008

JSS: Gas Prices Continue to Drop-- Seein' Movies-- Because I'm the Mayor-- Crummy Weather Continues

JSS-- Just Some Stuff

1. GAS PRICES CONTINUE TO DROP-- It's almost like it's a bad idea to buy gas when it gets a little low, because if you wait a day, it will be lower. But after those Big Oil nightmares last summer, it's a much-needed relief. Saw gas for $2.19 in Fox Lake today!!!

2. SEEIN' MOVIES-- Went to the Fox Lake Theater today and saw "Saw V" and "Role Models."

"Saw V" was as strange as any of the others. How do they keep coming up with new ways of killing folks? And then, there are the hard things old Jigsaw made people chose. I admit, I just saw the first two of the "Saw" movies a month ago. I didn't originally see them figuring it was teenage slasher genre. They definitely aren't.

I really enjoyed "Role Models" about two slacker types who have to be big brother to two young misfits and the eventual bond that forms between them. Then, there was those mighty interesting medieval folk.

3. BECAUSE I'M THE MAYOR-- Fox Lake Mayor Cindy Irvin just sold her house to the Fox Lake Library so it can go ahead with expansion. She sold it for $270,000, about $35,000 more than it appraises for, but less than she had been asking. The library never considered eminent domain. PLUS, she IS the mayor. What's that about fighting city hall?

When asked if she planned to leave the community, she replied "I have to stay here. I'm the mayor." Well put.

4. CRUMMY WEATHER CONTINUES-- Definitely a different three days to begin this week than we had last week where I was catching rays on deck. Cold, blustery, overcast, and rain off and on.

Because I'm Not a Fan of This Weather. --RoadDog

JSS: Fox Lake Veterans Day-- Out Buyin' CDs--

JSS: Just Some Stuff.

1. FOX LAKE VETERANS DAY-- Yesterday, I went to the observance by the train station on a cold and blustery day. Even then, about a hundred people turned out to honor our nation's heroes. A blast on the emergency siren at 11 signaled the start.

The Boy Scouts, Cub Scouts, VFW, American Legion, Sons of the American Legion, and Legion Riders were the color guard.

Cindy Irwin, the mayor of Fox Lake spoke first, followed by someone from the Legion Auxiliary, VFW, and Legion commanders.

Afterwards, the rifle squad from the Legion fired three volleys and a man played taps.

Thanks Veterans.

2. OUT BUYIN' CDS-- Afterwards, I hit the road (after stopping at McDonald's for a McRib meal) for McHenry and did my little part for the economy and bought 8 CDs. I went to Circuit City first, figuring I'd best use up what was left of my gift card Liz got me for last Christmas. There was a manager at the door assuring people all was well. The company declared bankruptcy on Monday.

They didn't have the new albums by Taylor Swift or NOW-29, saying they hadn't arrived, but I think it has something to do with the bankruptcy.

I did buy Larry Graham & Graham Central Station's Greatest Hits and the Spinners' "Mighty Love' there. Larry Graham was the base player for Sly $ the Family Stone, and the Spinners CDwas from 1974.

Next, I went to Best Buy and bought Shwayze, Best of NOW 10th Anniversary, and NOW-29. I like those NOW CDs as I get a good selection of the music the kids are listening to these days. I heard Shwayze's "Corona and Lime" in Myrtle Beach and really liked it. That really surprised a deejay at a bar there when I requested it. He couldn't imagine why an old guy like myself would know anything about Shwayze.

Last stop was at Borders where I had a 40% off coupon. Spent quite awhile there listening to CDs on their database and ended up with a good one, "The Whole Famdamily" by the Reverend Peyton's Big Damn Band. Kind of a cross between the blues and rock. I also bought "Warmth of the Sun" by the Beach Boys and "The Best of Little Feat."

Checked out with Sean, who used to manage Full Cyrkle Records in Crystal Lake where I spent many an hour talking music and listening to old records. He said he figured he'd see me when the 40% coupons came out.

I Guess You'd Call My Selections a Variety.

Hey, a Deal's a Deal. --RoadDog

Tuesday, November 11, 2008

Marine Corps Breakfast-- November 8th-- Part 2

Continuing from yesterday.

We watched the Message from the Marine Commandant which was about the country's war with terrorism. This year is the 25th anniversary of the opening round of it for the US, the destruction of the Marine Corps Barracks in Beirut, Lebanon.

I enjoy it when they pass the mike around and have attendees introduce themselves. Most just say their unit and years, but a few give some great comments.

Eleanor, the oldest Marine, kicked it off saying her name and unit and "You all know I'm 85, so there." Brought down the house with that one.

Most spoke so fast and a few too far away from the mike, but some other comments:

In both World War II and the Korean War.

1943 joined Carlson's Raiders right out of boot camp. Joined Chesty Puller's company and after one battle, only 6 men left.

In Korean War and one of the "Frozen Chosin." Glad I made it back with all my limbs.

At Inchon.

In World War II, out for a coffee, and then back for the Korean War. Had a date with Tokyo Rose.

Desert Storm.

Marines never die, they go to hell and regroup.

In Vietnam in Quangtree Province.

I'm here for my son. He has been a Marine for three years and is now at the US Naval Academy in his second year. However, HE WILL be rejoining the USMC.-- There were lots of Ooo-Rahs at this point.

4th Generation Marine.

Definitely Enjoyed Getting Together with all These Jarheads and Eleanor. A Lot of History in That Room. --RoadDog

JSS: Death of the Dollar Menu?-- McRib's Back-- Mad Men Smoking-- Madagascar II-- Obama's White Half?

JSS: Just Some Stuff

1. DEATH OF THE DOLLAR MENU?-- An article in the Northern Star yesterday at how the McDonald's on Lincoln Highway in Dekalb, Illinois, has quietly raised the price of the double cheeseburger, a dollar stalwart and one of my favorites, twenty cents. OH, NO!!!

2. MCRIB'S BACK!!!-- Well, at least McDonald's has come back with my FAVORITE sandwich, the McRib in the Midwest. That means a FEW trips to McDonald's over the next few weeks. I was disappointed that we didn't have it here back at the end of September and early October like they did in the south

3. MAD MEN SMOKING-- I've always wondered about all the smoking going on in AMC's "Mad Men." That is just something you just don't see on TV anymore. It turns out they are smoking Ecstasy herbal cigarettes which are tobacco and nicotine free.

4. MADAGASCAR II-- Last Friday, while attending the "Changeling" movie at the Fox Lake Theater, I saw lots and lots of 1st through 5th graders coning in with their parents to see the new "Madagascar II: Back to Africa" movie. Hey, at 1 PM, what about school? Perhaps they were getting a benefit of being home-schooled. Hey, sign me up.

5. OBAMA'S WHITE HALF?-- You keep hearing about him being the first black man elected president of the US. I just wonder what happened to his white half?

Just Wonderin'. --RoadDog

And Then, Today is Veterans Day

The eleventh hour of the eleventh day of the eleventh month the "War to End All Wars" ended as the guns fell silent in World War II. Today, we celebrate the sacrifices of all our veterans of all of our wars here in the US and around the world. And today, we mark the 90th anniversary of the end of it.

In Australia, it is Remembrance Day, especially poignant this year with the locating of the HMAS Sydney wreck.

Plus, this may well be the last observance for the four remaining veterans of that war. Britain has three: Henry Alingham, 112; Harry Patch, 110; and Bill Stone, 108. In West Virginia, we have the last US vet, Frank Buckles, 107.

The last French and German veterans died this past year.

The New Jersey World War II Memorial will be dedicated today in Trenton and the woman believed to be the nurse, Edith Shein, 90, in the famous Life photograph where the sailor planted the kiss heard-round-the-world on VJ Day ending WW II will be the grand marshal in the NY City Veterans Day parade.

Here in Fox Lake, I will be attending the American Legion and VFW ceremony at the train station at 11 AM.

You can find more on these stories at my other blog:

A Big Thank You to All of Our Veterans. Job Well Done. --RoadDog

Oops, I Forgot to Mention Two Significant Anniversaries Yesterday

I forgot to say congratulations to those gallant lads and ladies of the United States Marine Corps, which turned 233 years young yesterday. As they say, "Ooo-RAH!!!"

PLUS, yesterday, was the 35th anniversary of the sinking of the Edmund Fitzgerald in Lake Superior from one of those storms of November as Gordon would say. I see that the Detroit Historical Society had a presentation in its memory and also that of the Carl D. Bradley which sank in Lake Michigan during another November storm, Nov. 18, 1958.

While teaching, I would spend three days making a presentation on the Edmund Fitzgerald and the Great Lakes at this time. The kids could make a picture of the ship for extra credit and I collected some really nice ones over the years.

Plus, they would hear the "Wreck of the Edmund Fitzgerald" by Gordon Lightfoot many, many times as well as Pat Dailey's "Great Lakes Song" and other water-related songs like "White Squall."

Let's Hear it For the Jarheads and a Moment of Reverance for the Crews of the Edmund Fitzgerald, Carl D. Bradley and All Ships That Went Down in the Great Lakes. --RoadDog

Monday, November 10, 2008

Don't It make Ya Feel Old

One thing good old Bob Stroud does on his show besides give you all that great "OLD" music from the 60s and 70s, information about the tunes, but also he makes you feel "old."

He always spotlights and plays a song from them of the birthdays of artists celebrating this week. What happened to the generation that "Hoped we don't get old?" We're getting OLD.

Birthdays this week:

Tom Fogerty (CCR)-- would have been 67
Freddie Garrity (Freddie & the Dreamers)-- would have been 68
Jesse Collins Young (Youngbloods)-- 61
Neil Young-- 63
Bonnie Bramlett (Delaney and Bonnie)-- 64
Jim Peterik (Ides of March, Survivor)-- 58
James Young (Styx)-- 59
Booker Jones (Booker T. & the MGs)-- 64
Ronny Hammond (Atlanta Rhythm Section)-- 58.

We saw Jim Peterik Sunday at Bob Stroud's record release Party.

Who's Getting Older? --RoadDog

Creedence "Covered" Revival

Yesterday, November 9th, Bob Stroud featured the songs Creedence Clearwater Revival covered on their albums. This was in honor of what would have been Tom Fogerty's 67th birthday and he called it Creedence "Covered" Revival.

If I HAD to pick a favorite group from the 60s and early 70s, I'd probably have to go with CCR. I bought every one of their albums as soon as it was released. This was the only group I did that for, even the Beatles. Of course, when Creedence did a cover, they put their unmistakable stamp on it.

The songs and original performer.

I Put a Spell on You-- "Screaming" Jay Hawkins
Susie Q-- Dale Hawkins
99 and a Half-- Wilson Pickett
Good Golly Miss Molly-- Little Richard
Night Time is the Right Time-- Ray Charles (and NOT the Cosby Show ensamble)
Cotton Fields-- Honey Ledbetter
Midnight Special-- Johnny Rivers
Ooby Dooby-- Roy Orbison
My Baby Left Me-- Elvis Presley
Heard It Through the Grapevine-- Marvin Gaye

I was familiar with these songs as I played those old albums over and over again. I just didn't realize they did that many covers.

Lovin' That Great CCR Music. --RoadDog

CBMA Winners

This past weekend, a celebration was held in North Myrtle Beach and Myrtle Beach in honor of the 2008 Cammy Awards for the Carolina Beach Music Association. I hope to be able to attend it at some time. Maybe next year.

Some of the winners:

Female Vocalist-- Rhonda McDaniel
Male Vocalist-- Craig Woolard
Favorite New Artist-- Mark Roberts & Breeze
Song of the Year-- "Mama's Drinkin' Liquor Again" by King Tyrone & the Graveyard Ramblers (Got to love the title and group name).
Entertainer-- Jim Quick and the Holiday Band
FM DJ-- Ray Scott WVCO/Surf 94.9
FM Station-- WVCO (listening to it right now) 94.8 the Surf. 10th Year in a Row)
AM Station-- AM 920 WPCM-- Burlington, NC. Oldies and Beach all day (Unfortunately not on the internet. I'll tune in later this month when passing through to visit family in NC.)

Pioneer Award-- Little Anthony & the Imperials

There were lots of others. Go to to see all of them.

Congrats to 2008 Cammy Award Winners!! --RoadDog

Marine Corps Birthday Breakfast-- November 8th

Saturday morning, I went to the Fox Lake American Legion for the Tom Grosvenor Memorial Marine Corps Birthday Breakfast.

This honored the 233rd anniversary of the Corps' founding, the 61st year of the USMC's Toys for Tots, and the 25th breakfast.

About 150 Marines were in attendance, from World War II to the present. For $7 we got all the SOS, scrambled eggs, and strong coffee we could handle along with hot sauce to season the eggs. SOS is a term I'll put nicely as "Stuff on a Shingle": chipped beef and gravy on toast. Donations of money and toys were taken for the Toys for Tots campaign.

This was the second year it was held at the Fox Lake Legion, having outgrown its former sites in Grayslake and Wauconda.

Tom Grosvenor was one of the original 13 who started the breakfast and the name of the event was changed to "Tom Grosvenor" after his death in 2001.


We had the presentation of the colors by the Marine Corps League 801. Then the pledge, Star Spangled Banner and Marine's Hymn. I was amazed that so many knew the second and third stanzas until I saw they were printed in the brochure.

The CUTTING OF THE CAKE ceremony involves the oldest and youngest Marine in attendance using a sword to cut the cake with the USMC emblem on it. This signifies the connection between those who have been and those who are currently Marines.

The oldest was a woman who was a corporal during World War II. And I didn't even know the Marine Corps had women during that war. You should have seen her head jerk around when the host gave her age at 84. If looks could kill, he'd have been a goner.

The youngest Marine was a staff sergeant on present duty.

The cake had been kindly donated by Louvin' Oven in Round Lake.

More to Come. --RoadDog

A Good Weekend Until Sunday

Enjoyed it despite the worsening weather, capped by the cold, overcast, snow flurries, and bluster of Sunday, and Da Bear Loss to Tennessee.

FRIDAY-- Met buddy Kip for breakfast, played NTN at Hello Folks in Fox Lake and saw an excellent movie called "The Changeling" at the FL Theatre.

SATURDAY-- Went to the Marine Corps Birthday celebration in the morning at the American Legion in Fox Lake and drove to Schaumburg for Bob Stroud's Record Release Party at the Borders with all those great 60s-70s Chicago groups.

Then, we went to six places, five of them new to us, to play NTN in the Northwest suburbs, paid $2.28 (cheapest gas in a long time) for gas in Barrington after almost putting diesel in the Malibu (Duh!) and had a McRib at McDonald's in Wauconda while being entertained by the local junior high folk.

SUNDAY-- Listened to the CMT Country Music Countdown USA Show and Bob Stroud featured Creedence "Covered" Revival songs on his Rock and Roll Roots Show on the Drive in honor of what would have been Tom Fogerty's 67th birthday.

Then went to Baja Benny's to watch Da Bears-Tennessee game. The place was packed and had a hard time getting a seat. Da Bears could definitely have won this one, but for poor play selection and Da Grossman's inconsistent play.

Watched the great Animation Domination on Fox: Simpsons, King of the Hill, Family Guy, and American Dad. Also The Unit on CBS.

I will make separate entrees on the Marine Corps breakfast, Record Release Party, and NTNing.

Bad Weather, But Good Time. --RoadDog

Friday, November 7, 2008

On-Line Headlines, Throughout the Evening

The November 5th Chicago Tribune did an hourly look at some news sites. Make sure you read the Onion's comments. They are hilarious, and as usual, VERY, VERY TONGUE-IN-CHEEK.

6 PM-- McCain, Obama split first two called states
7-- McCain wins SC, CNN predicts
8-- Obama to win Penn, CNN predicts
9-- Two red states turn blue, CNN projects
10-- CNN: Obama to be next president

6 PM-- McCain wins Ky.; Obama takes Vt.
7-- Obama claims Pennsylvania prize
8-- Florida, Virginia hang in balance
9-- NBC: Obama wins Ohio, Iowa
10-- NBC: Obama wins

6 PM-- Klemke wins
7-- Voting machines elect one of own to be president
8-- Bush "Can I stop being president now?"
9-- McCain refusing to tell voters what's in box unless elected
10-- Black man given nation's worst job

Ya Just Gotta Like Dem Onion Boys. Great Job Tribune!!! --RoadDog


Another article in the November 6th Chicago Tribune by Monica Eng. She wrote about the street vendors at and following Tuesday's get-together in Grant Park.

COOLEST SOUVENIR-- Barackas-- a pair of these maracas with his face for $5.

BEST CLAIM-- "Get your official campaign towel. We have been traveling with the campaign and we assure you this is the official towel." $5 (Hand towel with Obama's face.

BEST JOB CAPITALIZING ON THE CHICAGO CONNECTION-- Tee shirt with "Chicago's in the house" under a picture of the White House flying Chicago's flag.

SECOND-BEST JOB CAPITALIZING ON THE CHICAGO CONNECTION-- Tee shirt with Cubs logo that becomes an O with "bama" inside. Yuck, Cubs, and Barack is a SOX FAN!!


BEST SALES COMEBACK-- When a woman tried to bargain down the vendor on a $20 Obama tee shirt, he replied: "But, he just took Ohio."

QUICKEST TURNAROUND-- Just moments after the race was called for Obama, stacks of "Yes We Did" shirts appeared.

BEST SALES PITCH FROM SOMEONE NOT SELLING AN ACTUAL SOUVENIR-- "Obama for president. I need the change," from a man sitting at Michigan Avenue and Randolph Street.

Now, This Is ONE Excellent Job of Reporting. A Very Real Part of Times Like This. Nice Job Monica. --RoadDog

Obama's Ripple Effect

An article in the November 6th Chicago Tribune discussed the effect that Barack Obama's election would have on Chicago and Illinois.

TOURISM-- Land of Lincoln will have another "presidential halo effect" Areas on Chicago's Southside and Springfield tied to Obama should have an increase in tourism.

KENNEDY EXPRESSWAY-- The airport closest to his home, Midway, is not big enough for Air Force 1, so he'll have to use O'Hare and take the Kennedy, causing massive tie-ups.

HIS NEIGHBORHOOD-- mix of upscale intellectual life and downscale street culture. Will it change?

HIS BLOCK-- Let's hope he doesn't choose to continue living in Chicago and commute to work like our governor. There are already barriers at either end of his block. Some neighbors are grousing about the inconvenience of the security.

UNIVERSITY OF CHICAGO-- Obama was a former law professor here. More students? More federal funds?

OPRAH WINFREY-- Can she get even more popular?

MASS TRANSIT-- Going broke. Can more federal funds be coming from DC?

OLYMPIC BID-- For 2016 Games. Sure can't hurt.

WHITE SOX-- Barack Obama is a big Sox fan. Throwing out first pitch.

Sure Won't Hurt. --RoadDog

JSS: Things Going Downhill-- Christmas Music Already?-- Gas Drop-- Sox Fan in White House-- Who Were Those Guys?-- CMBAs

JSS--Just Some Stuff

1. THINGS GOING DOWNHILL--One thing about weather around Chicagoland. Don't like it, just wait a bit. After three outstanding days M-W, it has gotten bad. Who'd have figured catching rays OD and eating lunch outside. Rain most of yesterday, but at least warm.

Very cold today with wind gusts, rain, and even snow flurries. Next week doesn't look much better with highs in the 40s.

2. CHRISTMAS MUSIC ALREADY?-- Yesterday, on our way up to Donovan's in Twin Lakes, Wisconsin, we tuned into Milwaukee's 95.7 FM which normally plays oldies. They were playing Christmas group and had been since the first. This continues until Christmas. That's pushing the season a tad. Feel sorry for their DJs. All Christmas music all the time makes Jack an unhappy lad.

3. GAS DROP-- It was $2.39 in Fox Lake and $2.42 (2.41.9) in Round Lake on my way to the triangle Restaurant in Grayslake to meet my buddy Kip. On the way back a few hours later, it was $2.37 in both. Getting better, but still aways to go. Plus, the election isover. Watch Out!!

4. SOX FAN IN WHITE HOUSE-- No more of that Texas Ranger loving stuff. We will have a White Sox fan in the White House. President-elect Obama is a Southside fan. His wife likes that team up north. Cubs?

5. WHO WERE THOSE GUYS?-- Ball State is the real deal. Ranked #16 on the national charts, the Cardinals put an old-fashioned whuppin' on my Huskies of NIU on Wednesday. We couldn't do much of anything on our way to the 45-14 disaster. And, we're not a bad team, having lost the three games before Wednesday by a total of 11 points and two of them last-minute losses.

Sure hope they get a BCS Bowl bid.

6. CMBAS-- This weekend, the Carolina Beach Music Awards are going on in North Myrtle Beach and Myrtle Beach, SC. That's one big party with some of the best music anywhere around. Maybe I can be there next year.


Band of Oz, Jim Quick & Coastline Band, Craig Woolard Band, Holiday Band, Sea Cruz

Lost to the Better Team. --RoadDog

Wednesday, November 5, 2008

Another Great Day Here in the Midwest

Yesterday was another day to savor.

I was OD as in Out on the Deck in the morning both soaking up rays and typing away on the old 'put.

Voted, then drove to Crystal Lake and had my final appointment with the doctor who operated on my thumb back in June. She said I didn't have to come back anymore with the great improvement. Great news.

On the way back, decided to stop at Joey T's Italian restaurant in McHenry for lunch. They are on a channel to the Fox River. We were happy to see their patio was open and took advantage of al fresco dining. How about that, eating outside on November 4th and nor freezing?

Great food (even beter with a $7 off coupon) and what a view of the boats, new and very expensive townhomes ($400,000 plus) across the channel and that beautiful new pedestrian bridge across it. Plus, listening to Dean Martin and Frank Sinatra sing in the sun and warm breezes.

Great food as well.

Election's Over, Congratulations President-Elect Obama

I watched the election returns off and on last night.

I was impressed with Senator McCain's concession speech which showed a lot of class. The poor man had a chance to win until the economy finally collapsed. Then, it was all over. Plus, he had the George Bush baggage to carry. A valiant effort.

As usual, President-elect Obama gave a great speech as well. No wonder he attracted so many of the young voters. He is charismatic.

Now, we will see how he intends to bring about the promised change. It will be a daunting task. This country is in its worst shape I've ever seen in my 57 years. And, I have seen some really bad times.

Hoping for the Best for Everyone Concerned. --RoadDog

Tuesday, November 4, 2008

JSS: Election-- Circuit City-- NIU Tragedy

JSS-- Just Some Stuff

1. ELECTION-- It finally, FINALLY comes to an end today. This one seemed like it went on FOREVER!!! And we don't even live in a contested state. Visiting North Carolina in September and October, that was all we were assaulted with.

Either way, this will be a historical election with more people than ever voting and possibly the first-ever black president, well, half black.

Either way, Arizona and Illinois will finally get their full quotas of senators. I doubt that either candidate has represented their constituents very well. Actually, any government person should be able to have a temporary replacement while campaigning. Or, even better, should resign.

Very sorry to hear of Barack Obama's grandmother passing away, and so close to her grandson's possible election to the nation's highest position. She probably raised him more than anyone, and definitely more than his father.

2. CIRCUIT CITY-- Sad to see Circuit City stores closing. I've spent a lot of money there over the years. They were good competition for Best Buy. At least the Circuit City in McHenry, Illinois, will remain open.

I see that the current head of the company is an acting one. I wonder how much the former CEO got as a golden parachute? That is the CEO way these days. Wreck the company and leave with your millions.

3. NIU TRAGEDY-- A short time ago, the family of Dan Parmenter, one of the murdered students at Northern Illinois, planted an autumn glaze maple tree at the Lagoon on what would have been his 21st birthday.

A few weeks earlier, the family of Ryanna Mace also planted a tree at the Lagoon in honor of what would have been her 20th birthday.

Sad Times.

Out on Deck-- Again

Wouldn't it be great if all our winters here in the Midwest were like this? Typing this out right now as the temp hovers in the low 70s and full sun.

This morning, while carrying the garbage out for pickup, I noticed the front of the house had a lot of color with the golden barberries (hate those thorns) a golden orange, the sedum in colors and the five burning bushes putting on quite the display, Also, the yellow, purple, orange, and red mums.

Going for hopefully the last appointment with the doctor who operated on my thumb, and, of course, have to vote today. I also need to pick up the boat from the marina where it was winterized.

Yesterday, we washed most of the windows and found that several screens need replacing. I guess that is to be expected after being in the house for just shy of 16 years now. We moved in over Thanksgiving weekend 1992.

Tomorrow looks like another great day.

Sittin' and Lovin' It. --RoadDog

Time Warp to October 26, 1967-- Part 2

Continuing with Bob Stroud's trip back to memoryland. Other songs being played on your AM radio in Chicago. That'd be WLS and WCFL. Again, Bob Stroud's comments. Mine are in parentheses ().

EVERLASTING LOVE-- ROBERT KNIGHT-- If you're going to be a none-hit wonder, make it a memorable one and that's what he did. So memorable, that someone else cut it in 1974 and that was Carl Carlton.
PEOPLE ARE STRANGE-- DOORS-- The Doors were around with their second album "Strange Days" and this is the initial release.
HUSH-- BILLY JOE ROYAL-- The original hit version written by Joe South. A year later, Deep Purple would have it. (Early Heavy Metal.)

SOUL MAN-- SAM AND DAVE-- (Where are the Blues Brothers when you need them?)
EXPRESSWAY TO YOUR HEART-- SOUL SURVIVORS-- (Great Road Song, if you can afford the gas.)
BROWN-EYED GIRL-- VAN MORRISON-- first taste of a cat name Van Morison who'd just left Them and now he is solo. (Guaranteed to get folks out of the dance floor and singing.)
GLAD TO BE UNHAPPY-- MAMAS AND PAPAS-- Old thirties classic written by Rogers and Hart. The Mamas and Papas really revolutionized the sound in the mid-sixties. The sexually integrated group with males and females making beautiful music together.

PURPLE HAZE-- JIMI HENDRIX-- Our first whiff. ('Scuse me while I kiss the sky.)
DANDELION-- ROLLING STONES-- "A" side of the current Rolling Stones single. (From that Great "Their Satanic Majesties Request" album with the 3-D moving picture on the cover.)
FACE THE AUTUMN-- FAMILY-- A local band in town that boasted a female singer and recorded for the local label USA that the Buckinghams were on originally.
LET IT OUT (LET IT ALL HANG OUT)-- HOMBRES-- a one-hit wonder in the top ten. (Was this a dirty song or what?)

YOU KEEP RUNNING AWAY-- FOUR TOPS-- one of the most distinctive voices of the sixties was that of lead singer Levi Stubbs and it was a sad day when he died about a week and a half ago. (Give me that Good Old Motown anytime.)
LITTLE OLE MAN-- BILL COSBY-- old silver throat himself, taking his cue from Stevie Wonder's classic. (And you thought all Bill could do was comedy?)

And the #1 Song in Chicago-- THE LETTER-- BOX TOPS-- the little band out of Memphis and the first time out hit #1.

Sure Brought Back a Few Memories for Me. --RoadDog

Monday, November 3, 2008

Time Warp to October 26, 1967

Sunday, October 26th, Bob Stroud took his Rock and Roll Roots Show, WDRV 96.9 FM in Chicago, back to that date in 1967. It brought back some memories.

I was a junior at Palatine High School in Palatine, Illinois, and working part time at the Burger King on Northwest Highway, US-14, in town and getting paid all of a dollar an hour for my efforts.

Enjoying my history class with Mr. McKinley, but, definitely not English with Ms. Salzer, or, Flo-Baby, as we called her. I was still a week away from meeting Liz, my wife of 35 years now.

The music of WCFL and WLS AM station on your radio. Bob Stroud's comment follow and, if in () they are mine.

INCENSE AND PEPPERMINTS-- STRAWBERRY ALARM CLOCK-- New band out of San Diego, one of two top 00 hits for them. Talk about your psychadelic!!)
WE LOVE YOU-- ROLLING STONES-- These were psychadelic times. The "B" side of their current release. John Lennon was singing in the background.
(YOU MAKE ME FEEL LIKE) A NATURAL WOMAN-- ARETHA FRANKLIN-- A Carole King tune by one of the Stones' favorite artists. (Always reminds me of Murphy Brown for some reason.)
SHE'S MY GIRL-- TURTLES-- Hit Bound (One of my favorite Turtles songs.)
LOVE IS STRANGE-- PEACHES AND HERB-- Their version exactly ten years after the original in 1957 by Mickey and Sylvia.
TO SIR WITH LOVE-- LULU-- By far the biggest movie song in the top ten and on its way to #1. It originally was the "B" side. The "A" side was was a Neil Diamond song called "The Boat That I Row," but jocks flipped it over and said "This is the hit side." (Didn't like it at the time, but do now.)
HEY BABY, THEY'RE PLAYING OUR SONG-- BUCKINGHAMS-- top ten (Great Chicago group.)

More of October 26, 1967 to Come. --RoadDog

Sitting Out On Deck on November 3rd!!

I'm sitting on the deck right now and posting this blog entry...AND, IT'S November 3rd. Florida ain't got nothin' on us. Well, at least for now. Temps are supposed to be Ianthe 70s today and the next two days, but low 40s by the weekend. A return to normalcy for this time of the year.

But, for right now, I'll sit out here in my shorts and tee shirt and just enjoy it.

Someone's burning leaves somewhere. The smell of fall while we can still burn them around here (every October and November and April and May). Several burning bushes are doing just that with those brilliant reds. The sedums are st rinking with their gold stems and red heads. Plus the red, yellow, and orange mums are still ablaze.

Most of the trees have lost their leaves, but the three Bradbury pears are still green. They're always the last to lose their leaves and get a burnt red/rust color. One maple is gold.

The tall grass plants have white plumes.

Not a Bad Day to Be OD. --RoadDog

Saturday, November 1, 2008

Beach Music-- Top Five Songs

Listened to the Surf's Top 40 Beach Songs for this week this morning.

They were doing a live broadcast from Whiteville, NC's, Pecan Harvest Festival.

The Top 5:

#5. Heavy Love-- Fantastic Shakers
#4, Mama's Drinking Liquor Again-- Graveyard Ramblers
#3. Carolina's Calling Me-- Mike Stewart
#2. Hey, Mr. DJ-- Lonnie Givens
#1. Fool If You Think It's Over-- Holiday Band

Love That Beach Music. --RoadDog

Why Did the Chicken Cross the Road?

This is making the rounds lately and I'd have to say, someone did a great job capturing some of our politicians today.

JOHN McCAIN-- "My friends, that chicken crossed the road because he recognized the need to engage in cooperation and dialogue with all the chickens on the other side of the road."

BARACK OBAMA-- The chicken crossed the road because it was time for a change. The chicken wanted change."

GEORGE W. BUSH-- The chicken is either for us or against us. There is no middle ground."

AL GORE-- "I invented the chicken."

DICK CHENEY-- "Where's my gun?"

JOE THE PLUMBER-- "I always eat my chicken at Popeye's"

COLONEL SANDERS-- "I missed one? Hey, Joe, what's wrong with my chickens?"

Pretty Good Stuff. --RoadDog

File Under Things That Burn Me-- CEOs and CFOs

One of the reasons for out economic malaise is the utter greed of those who lead our companies.

Came across an article in the October 11th Chicago Tribune about Walgreens CEO Jeffrey Rein who left the chain. This is a man who like so many CEOs these days has a tenure of only a few years. One who comes in, shakes up a company, messes it up, and then takes off with his golden parachute.

In the past, Walgreens has always promoted from within, until now. Rein immediately began hiring senior executives from the outside, taking on debt, and wildly buying other drug companies.

Rein was the fourth CEO of Walgreens in the past ten years. Charles Walgreen, III, ran the company for thirty years before that. Unfortunately, there was nothing about Rein's "retirement" package.


On the same page was the "severance" package for United CFO Jake Brace, who pocketed more than $2.4 million. He led United through "a long and painful restructuring." Among other things, he ended the company's pension program.

For his "efforts", Brace received $10.3 million in 2006. Plus, he is getting lots and lots of stock options which he can hold on to for eight more years.

These Guys Seem to ONLY Be Thinking of Themselves and Not the Companies They Lead. --RoadDog

Gas Prices Still Coming Down

I'm really enjoying this. Finally, a small bit of relief in these days of greed and avarice on the parts of some at the expense of the masses.

Gas here in the Fox Lake, Illinois, area has gone from $2.60 to $2.54. This past Wednesday, it was $2.50 around Lake Geneva, Wisconsin, and we even got a top-off in Fontana at the BP station at $2.39!!! Never thought I'd see it that low again.

I predict it will continue to drop until at least TUESDAY, and we all know what happens that day.

Of course, then, there is that wonderful OPEC group cutting the 1.5 million barrels a day production as of today. It just might go up Monday.

THEN, we will see how fast it takes Big Oil to increase the prices at the pump.

Enjoyin' the Drop. --RoadDog

Took Another Drive Around Geneva Lake in Wisconsin

This past Wednesday, my buddy Frank, Liz, and I took a drive north to Lake Geneva, Wisconsin, and ate at Popeye's overlooking the Riviera Docks and Geneva Lake. Gage Marine has done a great job of preserving some of those old early 1900s steam launches and boats.

We had a 50% off coupon and splurges on Oktoberfest meals and Frank fot that great half rotisserie chicken, started off with one of their signature broccoli and Wisconsin cheese soups.

We then walked around downtown a little. Sad to see the old arcade Game World was closed after all those years and quarters. Zebra mussels have been in Geneva Lake for several years now according to one guy working on one of the Gage Marine boats, the 1890 launch Polaris. He said that after a fast growth, their population is leveling off and the problems are not as bad. The lake has never been cleaner though.

As great as the color was the week before, it was even more peak today. And the sun was shining brightly

Drove along the south shore, through Fontana, and along the north shore of the lake. George Williams College in Williams Bay was particularly beautiful.

Then, we went along the south shore of Lake Como and the drive along Snake Road was just about indescribable. Still a lot of color in the residential area to the west of downtown Lake Geneva.

A Great Bonus Day for Us. --RoadDog