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

Tuesday, May 31, 2011

A Pretty Good Memorial Day Weekend-- Part 2: Music, Summer Starts Here, Small Town Memorial Day


Started the day off listening to Bob Stroud's annual Rock and Roll Roots Used Car Lot show where he plays songs about cars and the open road, just the thing to get a roadie like me ready for the summer. This was also for the Indy 500, which celebrated its 100th birthday.

Lousy weather again, though. The fog was so bad this morning, that I couldn't even see the next door houses. It broke, then we had bad storms.

It finally stopped and we went over to Captain's Quarters on Fox Lake for our "official" summer kick-off. Sitting outside with boaters and bikers, drinking ice cold beer and listening to a band. Price of a bottle of beer was $3.25 and they still have those great Johnsonville brats and fries for $4.


The Drive had their History of Rock and Roll all day. They played songs and gave information about the beginning of RnR, through the British Invasion and to all other aspects of the music.

We went to Twin Lakes, Wisconsin, for a small-town Memorial Day celebration. There were three bands in the parade. We went to Main Street Tap (your perfect Wisconsin small-town bar), for drinks before and after the parade, which goes right by it. I had their great and ultimate Bloody Mary which is usually offered on Sundays only.

Then, on to Donovan's Reef (a piece of the Florida Keys in Wisconsin) for brews and NTN.

On the way home, Wilmot Riverside in Wilmot and the Dill Pickle in Spring Grove, Illinois, were closed. We ended up at Tommy's in Spring Grove for beer nuggets and broasted chicken.

Not a Bad Way to Spend Four Days. --RoadDog

EVER WONDER...Why Noah didn't swat those two mosquitoes? (I might add Japanese beetles, flies and gnats.)

A Salute to Our Veterans

Of course, the reason we have Memorial Day, is to honor those who have served in the defense of our country.

I belong to the Fox Lake American Legion as a member of the Sons of the American Legion due to my grandfather William Graham Hood's (we called him Daddy Graham)service in World War I (he was one of the first Legion members in the state of North Carolina.

My other grandfather, was in the Merchant Marine during World War I.

A great uncle on my mom's side, was a lieutenant in the AEF during World War I. He survived being gassed in the trenches, but lost his life a few months after returning to Goldsboro, NC, when he saved a young boy from a flood, winning the Carnegie Medal.

I was in the Marine Corps for awhile back in the early 70s. I went to basic training for six weeks (I was in Platoon Leadership Class to be an officer) during the summer of 1971. As the Vietnam War wound down, they dropped me (which was quite alright with me).

Dad was too young for World War II, but his brother served in the 101st Airborne.

Like They Say, "Freedom Ain't Free." --RoadDog

Monday, May 30, 2011

A Pretty Good Memorial Day Weekend-- Part 1: Some Yardwork and Relaxation

Even with all the crummy weather. We literally went from early spring to mid-summer today. This morning, the heat was on. At 10 am, I went outside and started sweating just walking. That's when you know it's REAL HOT and muggy.


Worked in the yard and later went to the Tank on Long Lake for buck beers (they even had Bud Light Lime for a dollar!!) Stopped at the Legion on Fox Lake on the way home for dollar drafts and karaoke (I didn't sing though).

Took the '85 Firebird out for its first spin of the year around the neighborhood. I keep it in the garage all winter.


Enjoyed Wendy Rice's Saturday Morning Flashback on WXRT which went back to my college years, 1970 in the morning. Great music back then, and of course, I was enjoying my college experience. Some of that music brought back some great memories like: Roadhouse Blues-- Doors, Blues Power-- Clapton, Up Around the Bend-- CCR, Nature's Way-- Spirit, Ape Man-- Kinks, Ohio-- CSNY, War-- Edwin Starr and My Sweet Lord-- George Harrison.

Worked in the yard all afternoon. Watched Star Trek movies on Scyfy that night.

Half Way Through. --RoadDog

EVER WONDER...Why there isn't mouse-flavored cat food?

Moose Skowron

I was very sorry to read that one of my all-time favorite Chicago White Sox players, Bill Skowron, better known as "Moose" is suffering from lung cancer, but is battling the disease every step of the way at age 80.

He played for the Sox right when I was getting interested in baseball, from 1964 to 1967, and for a few months until he was traded, a member of my all-time favorite Sox team in 1967, the team that broke my heart when they could have won the AL pennant until they folded the last five games. They had traded Moose in May. Had he, with all his World Series experience, ten times, been with the team, I don't think it would have happened.

The first time I was at old Comiskey Park, I heard all the fans booing him when he came up to bat. It turns out they were yelling "Moose."

His lifetime stats: batting average was .282, 211 home runs and 888 rbis.

I'll write more about him in my history blog at http://cootershistorything.blogspot.com.

First we lose Santo, and now this!!

One Great Ballplayer. --RoadDog

Saturday, May 28, 2011

How 'Bout Dem Oil Execs: High Gas Prices Not Our Fault

From the May 13th Chicago Tribune.

Oil company executives defended their industry despite rising public outcry at their gas prices. After all, they just made $35 BILLION in first quarter profits. And they still think they should get their subsidies to provide their product.

They were primarily under attack by Democrats. Republicans are much friendlier to them. Oil companies Chevron, Exxon Mobil, Shell Oil, ConocoPhillips and BP America were on the hot seat.

Chevron CEO John Watson said, "Don't punish our industry for doing its job well."

The oilmen argued that scaling back their tax breaks would unfairly single out their industry, hamper their ability to pursue new energy supplies and put jobs at risk.

Oil executives say they are not to blame for the high gas prices because it is a global commodity.

Hey, guys, how about using some of that profit to continue searching for new supplies. Forget about your almighty investors and think about the good of regular folk for a change.

I Really hate Those Guys. --RoadDog

JSS: Blogs Back on Line-- Bye-Bye Bulls-- Used Car Lot-- Biking the Drive-- What's with the Weather?

JSS-- Just Some Stuff.

1. BLOGS BACK ON LINE-- I finally was able to get my travel and Civil War blogs going again, although I had to do it using a guest log-in. Still don't know what happened.

2. BYE-BYE BULLS-- The Bulls lost Thursday after blowing a 12-point lead in the final four minutes. As such, they are eliminated. At least I don't have to feel that I have to watch any more of the NBA playoffs.

3. USED CAR LOT-- Tomorrow from 7-10 am CSDT, Bob Stroud is doing his annual Used Car Lot Show on his Rock and Roll Roots program on the Drive. Streaming live at www.wdrv.com. If you like car songs, give it a listen.

4. BIKING THE DRIVE-- Tomorrow, Chicago's Outer Drive is going to be closed to auto traffic. People pay a fee and ride their bikes for one great view of the city and lake. Great idea and way to make some money for a good cause.

5. WHAT'S WITH THE WEATHER?-- Overcast and still a bit cool. The furnace has been on. Supposed to be 92 degrees by Memorial Day. Crazy stuff.

If You Don't Like the Weather Now, Wait a Few Minutes. --RoadDog

EVER WONDER...Why the time of the day with the slowest traffic is called "Rush Hour?"

Friday, May 27, 2011

Now That's Funny-- Part 2

While on the subject of playgrounds.

It is a wonder how anyone of us survived the playgrounds designed by adults back then. Like Bill Cosby said, no kid should ever have gone on anything they didn't see adults playing on.

Those old playgrounds could be, and were, dangerous.

First off, many were on asphalt or rocks, which made falling down so much more fun. A few of us were lucky enough to have sand.

I remember burning my butt on those red hot slides on more than one occasion. I also stupidly tried on many occasions to run up the slide. I also fell off the top of the slide while clowning around.

Then, there was that merry-go-round, which just begged for speed. The more speed, the better the centrifugal force. Too much fun trying to walk if you didn't get launched off. Then, there was the occasional throwing up.

Monkey bars were the worst. You just had to hang by your knees and do stupid stuff on these. A slip, and hitting the bottom was just as bad as hitting the bars on the way down.

And, see-saws. Wow!! Nothing like jumping off at the bottom and sending the other person plunging to their doom. That is, if you were able to clear your legs before the upward motion began. If too slow, that was some excruciating pain.

Boy, Those Old Playgrounds!! --RoadDog

EVER WONDER...Why the man investing your money is called a broker?

Now, That's Funny

From the May 22nd Chicago Tribune Comics.

Thatababy by Paul Trip.

On hitting 60, this strip kind of hit home, to an extent.

FIRST FRAME: Man and his kid at a playground. Man does all the talking in all frames.

"I feel bad for your ilk and your plastic play structures."

FRAME 2: Kids playing on monkey bars. "Our playgrounds were made out of cold hard steel. It wasn't officially summer 'til someone broke their arm on the monkey bars."

FRAME 3: Merry-go-round. "And each year the fifth graders used the merry-go-round to teach the first graders all about centrifugal force!"

FRAME 4: On the slide. "And the slide wasn't enclosed in a safety tube! Your coordination alone kept you from flying off into space!"

FRAME 5: Still on the slide. "The brave would run up the slide, and the bold would scale the underbelly."

FRAME 6: Still at the slide, only now it's red hot. "And those slides would get RED HOT baking in the sun."

FRAME 7: "You can have your crummy Internet! I want a metal slide!!"

Maybe the good ol' days weren't so good after all. AND, I LIKE MY INTERNET!!!

Right now, I am not happy that I can't get back onto my other two blogs, Saw the Elephant and RoadDog's Roadlog.

EVER WONDER...Why lemon juice is made with artificial flavor, and dishwashing liquid is made with real lemons?

Thursday, May 26, 2011

A Pretty Good Weekend-- Part 3

SUNDAY MAY 22ND-- continued.

Still at the Island Bar. They have a great Bloody Mary special on Sundays and a lot of people were drinking them. Hey, at $1.50 for a 16-ozer, I can drink that. Not garnishments though. But the price is right.

This means Twin Lakes has two great Sunday Bloody Marys. This one, and then there there is the Ultimate Bloody Mary at Main Street. Cost $3.50 in a pint glass, but with full extras to make a lunch. Even shrimp.

The menu is fairly-priced for these days...AND they have a huge $2.99 basket of SWEET POTATO FRIES!!!

The place was full of boaters (the ramp was busy the whole time), bikers and bar lushes. Met Sue and Paul there who had biked up on their H-D.

Good place. We'll be back.


Next to Donovan's in Twin Lakes. Sat out on the deck under their artificial palms and looked across the road at Lake Mary until it got too hot. Had a few too many cocktails while there.


Then drove east to Wilmot, Wisconsin, founded in the 1840s. Went to the new Wilmot Riverside (used to be one of our favorite places, Mar's Trading Post Inn). They are still trying to find their niche, but had a good crowd. The bartender said it was the best they've had to date. Pints are $2.

Enough Fun for One Day. --RoadDog

EVER WONDER...Why doctors call what they do a "practice?"

Back to 1962-- Part 2

Back in 1962, I turned 11 and at this point was in 5th grade in Greenville, Illinois. We were just about to move to Illinois as my dad had been transferred to Quaker Oats' main office at the Merchandise Mart in Chicago. I was not happy about the move at all, but there wasn't anything I could do.

Actually, a big reason was that my social studies book had one picture of Chicago in it, and it was of tenement slums, which is where I thought we'd be living.

Anyway, 'Fessa John Hook played a lot of songs that were "Honorable Mention" in his four hour show. After all, those songs were short and 40 would not take up the full time slot.

Here are the "Honorable Mentions":


A SHOT OF RHYTHM & BLUES-- Arthur Alexander-- Little-known, but one of the best R&B singers. After all, the Beatles covered two of his songs.

PANAMA CITY BLUES-- Larry & the Loafers (a real regional hit down at PCB, Fla.)
SLOW TWISTIN'-- Chubby Checker & Dee Dee Sharp

WHAT'S YOUR NAME-- Don and Juan


Love This Studd, Man. --

EVER WONDER...Why abbreviated is such a long word?

What's with Blogspot?

Yesterday, I wasn't able to log into my other two blogs, and I'm still not able to do so this morning.

I'm still getting this one and Cooter's History Thing. I can't get into my travel blog, RoadDog's Roadlog Blog and Civil War blog, Saw the Elephant.

Hopefully I will be soon.

I can't even get into blogspot directly. It says unavailable.

In the Meantime. --RoadDog

EVER WONDER...Why we don't ever see headlines reading, "Psychic Wins Lottery?"

Wednesday, May 25, 2011

A Pretty Good Weekend-- Part 2

May 21st-- SATURDAY

Drove to Twin Lakes, Wisconsin, and ate lunch and played NTN at Donovan's Reef (named for the movie starring John Wayne and Lee Marvin). Owners Tommy and Lenny were meeting with people in regards to rebuilding the motel that had a fire in early February that unfortunately resulted in one death.


Bob Stroud played Rolling Stone Magazine's Seventy Best Bob Dylan songs on his Rock and Roll Roots Show on the Drive radio station, cherry-picking since his show is just three hours long. He also played covers of some of the songs.

Terri Hemmert, on WXRT, also had her weekly Breakfast with the Beatles show for two hours.


Caught some rays OD, then drove back to Twin Lakes, this time to the Sand Bar on Lake Elizabeth, the larger of the two lakes. This used to be where Mad Dan's was located, a very popular eating place.

Going here is like being down in the Florida Keys. The eating and bar area is completely screened in with all those great breezes (they're closed during the winter). Trop Rock and Reggae play on the speakers. A real party atmosphere and quite crowded.

More to Come. --RoadDog

EVER WONDER...Why women can't put on mascara with their mouths closed?

What's with This Weather?


Those videos shot out of tornadoes yesterday from the OKC area as well as the ones from Joplin are something else. I've never seen tornadoes as they happen.

Yesterday 13 more die along with the 122 so far in Joplin. It seems that these tornadoes now are following Route 66, with both cities on it. Today I saw an article with an El Reno, Oklahoma, tagline, also on 66.

We've had more tornadoes this spring than usual. Then, there were those ones that hit Alabama earlier this month.


Sunday evening, we had a storm that scared me more than usual. The wind was really strong and the sky a weird color. Tornado warning sirens in Spring Grove went off and we took shelter in the basement. Nothing came of it, fortunately.

However, with all the lightning and rain that night, the grass really took off. I had to cut it yesterday, two days before I usually cut it. Sure glad I did as it rained a lot last night and is raining right now. Can't let the lawn get ahead of me during the spring.

High today predicted at 65 degrees and tomorrow at 52 degrees. Way too cool for this time of the year.

Plus, we have Memorial Day weekend coming up, almost always crummy weather here for the opening of the boating season on the Chain of Lakes. Almost as predictable as the weekends the Round Lake Carnival wrecks in April.

Is This Global Warming? --RoadDog

EVER WONDER...Why the sun lightens our hair, but darkens our skin?

Tuesday, May 24, 2011

Not Saying That Some of Us Are Getting Old, But...

They say that Rock and Roll never dies, it doesn't even retire. Bob Dylan turns 70 today, but he will barely take a stop on his nonstop touring schedule.

I just turned 60 today, but I AM RETIRED and AM ENJOYING it immensely. I highly recommend it even if the tea-partiers hate me for it.

The Rock and Roll generation is aging, some more gracefully than others.

Neil Diamond, mike Love (Beach Boys) and Joan Baez have already hit 70, and Charlie Watts, David Crosby and both Simon and Garfunkel will be following later in 2011.

Gary Bongiovanni, editor of the concert-industry publication Pollstar, says, "These people came of age when you weren't supposed to trust anybody over 30, and they're on the road as grandparents and great-grandparents."

From the May 22nd Parade Magazine.

If David Crosby and Keith Richards can get this old, there is hope for everybody. What did the Who say about their generation?

"I've Got to Admit I'm Getting Older." --RoadDog

ONLY IN AMERICA...Do they have drive-up ATM machines with Braille lettering.

My Own Dylan Top Ten

Well, if Rolling Stone can do it, so can I. Only I'll stick with my favorites.

10. It Ain't Me
9. If Not for You
8. Mr. Tambourine Man
7. Maggie's Farm
6. You Ain't Going Nowhere

5. Tangled Up and Blue
4. Like a Rolling Stone
3. Knockin' On Heaven's Door
2. Rainy Day Women #12 & #35
1. Lay Lady Lay

I actually could have just written down the songs of Dylan's country effort, Nashville Skyline, as that is by far my favorite album of his. The play list:

Girl from the North Country (with Johnny Cash)
Nashville Skyline Rag
To Be Alone with You
I Threw It All Away
Peggy Day

Lay Lady Lay
One More Night
Tell Me That Isn't True
Country Pie
Tonight I'll Be Staying Here with You

Good Stuff, Maynard. --RoadDog

Bob Dylan's Turning 70 Today-- Part 2

Continuing with Bob Stroud's Rock and Roll Roots Salute to Bob Dylan at 70.

20. BLOWIN' UN THE WIND-- Stevie Wonder



In case you're wondering what Rolling Stone Magazine's Top Ten were, the others:


Happy 70th, Mr. Zimmerman. --RoadDog

ONLY IN AMERICA...Do we buy hot dogs in packages of ten and buns in packages of eight.

Monday, May 23, 2011

Bob Dylan's Turning 70 Tomorrow-- Part 1

Not only is tomorrow my 60th birthday, but it is also Bob Zimmerman's 70th.

Rolling Stone Magazine had an issue devoted to Bob Dylan's 70 best songs. On yesterday's Rock and Roll Roots, Bob Stroud cherry-picked his way through that list playing as many as he could in the three hours of his show as well as snippets of what he would have had in the top 70.

He did not just play the songs by Dylan, but also covers. Of course, there were a lot of Byrds and Band songs.

Here are the songs Stroud played:

67. Leopard Skin Hat
60. Buckets of Rain
55. If Not for You-- George Harrison (I did not know this was a Dylan song.)
54. Fourth Time Around
53. When I Paint My Masterpiece-- Band

52. Tears of Rage-- Band
47. Spanish Harlem Incident-- Band
45. It Ain't Me-- Turtles (My favorite Turtles song.)
44. Stuck in Mobile with the Memphis Blues Again
43. Got to Serve Somebody

40. I Threw It All Away
38. My Back Pages-- Byrds
37. Maggie's Farm
32. Chimes of Freedom-- Byrds
29. You Ain't Goin' Nowhere-- Byrds (I always think this one should be called "Rockin' Chair.")

28. The Times They Are a-Changing-- Byrds
25. Knockin' on Heaven's Door
24. Lay Lady Lay (My favorite Bob Dylan song. Liz bought me the 45 when it came out and her parents had a fit when they saw the title.)

Happy B-Day Bobby. --RoadDog

ONLY IN AMERICA...Do we leave cars worth thousands of dollars in the driveway and put our useless junk in the garage.

Here's Looking at the Big 6-0

One day before I turn 60. Who'd A'Thought? Can it already be almost five years since I retired from teaching just a couple days after my 55th birthday?

Yesterday, the Chicago Tribune's comic section had a very appropriate Shoe strip.

FIRST PANEL: Shoe is running along the limb, coming up behind Cosmo, "Out of my way, Cosmo!!"

SECOND PANEL: Shoe entering the door to the Treetops Tavern: "Last one to the bar buys the first round!"

THIRD PANEL: Cosmo and Shoe have their beers at the bar. Cosmo says, "There must be an actual point where you cross into middle age."

FOURTH PANEL: Shoe says, "For me, I think I know when that was." Cosmo, "Oh?"

FIFTH PANEL: Shoe, "When I was young, the first thing I did when walking into a bar..."

SIXTH FRAME: "Was check out the babes."

SEVENTH FRAME: Cosmo, "And that's changed?"

EIGHTH FRAME: Shoe, "Oh, yeah...now the first thing I do..."

NINTH FRAME: Shoe, "Is check for the location of the bathroom."

Yup, That About Sums It Up for Me. --RoadDog

ONLY IN AMERICA....Do banks leave vault doors open and then chain the pens to the counters.

A Pretty Good Weekend: Yardwork and Bars-- Part 1

Definitely what I would call a good three days just ended, even with last evening's storms that verged on being more than a bit frightening.


Had lunch on the deck (OD), then spent the afternoon clearing up the wood I cut Thursday and working on Frances' Back 40.

Then met the Usual Suspects at the Tank on Long Lake for music on the patio, a cookout (love their flank steak tacos), buck domestic bottles, and fire pit (which came in great use after the sun went down and things cooled off).


Since we can only burn on weekends April and May now (and I'm sure soon it will be no burning), I decided to beat the rain and got out to the burn pile early and succeeded in getting what I needed burned. I also worked on the west end of the arboretum.

More to Come. --RoadDog

ONLY IN AMERICA....Do people order double cheeseburgers, large fries and a Diet Coke.

Arrrgh!! It's a Pirate's Life for Me

As expected, the newest Disney entry in the Pirates series "Pirates of the Caribbean: On Stranger Tides" opened this past weekend to huge audiences. As a matter of fact, it set a new international box office record with $256.3 million, breaking the old one held by "Harry Potter and the Half-Blood Prince" which did $236 million opening weekend.

I did not see the new pirates, though. I do not like crowds. And this one was going to have crowds. Give me elbow room. I'm in heaven when I have my own "private showing" where I am the only one in the theater. I may get out to see it sometime this week. I may even get the great stay out of the theater Liz to go see it as she is a REAL BIG Captain Jack fan.

Friday, we drove by the Fox Lake Theatres and the parking lot was packed. Wonder what they were seeing?

I was quite surprised Saturday night to tune into the USA Network and see them showing "Pirates of the Caribbean: Farther Shores" in its entirety, WITHOUT COMMERCIAL INTERRUPTION. Even Captain Jack would find that interesting.

Love That Captain "But You Have Heard of Me" Jack Sparrow. --RoadDog

ONLY IN AMERICA...Do drugstores make the sick walk all the way to the back of the store to get their prescriptions filled, while healthy people can buy their cigarettes at the front. (And not have to wait as long either.)

Friday, May 20, 2011

Well, I Cut the Tree

Yesterday, I did something I've been putting off for a month. I cut the half of the Bradford pear tree that blew down in last fall's wind storm. It was about a third of the fully mature tree. Part of it was in Frances' Back 40 flower bed and part on the lawn.

The last several days, I had been out with hand-held clippers trimming off the smaller branches.

About three years ago, I had bought an electric chainsaw from Aldi's for $40, but until last fall didn't really need it. The tree was more than I cared to cut with a handsaw.

I got the directions out and read closely about the operation of it, especially about some dangerous called kickbacks. I don't mind saying I was a bit scared of it, hearing so much from friends about the dangers.

Well, I cut the tree into pieces and still have ten fingers and ten toes. I counted just to be sure. It was nowhere near as bad as I feared.

I have a nice pile of cut wood now.

However, it did take my hands quite a few hours to stop shaking from all that motion.

Looks Like I'll Have a Lot of Firewood for the Pit. --RoadDog

YOGI BERRA"S LAST SAY: It ain't over till it's over.

Beach Music Top 40 from 1962-- Part 4

Here we go, the TOP TEN for 1962. I was eleven years old in that year.

9. GYPSY WOMAN-- Impressions
8. CRY TO ME-- Solomon Burke

6. JAMIE-- Eddie Holland
5. SEPTEMBER IN THE RAIN-- Dinah Washington
4. FAT BOY-- Billy Stewart

3. HEY BABY-- Bruce Channel
2. IT WILL STAND-- Showmen
1. SMOKEY PLACES-- Corsairs

Thanks, 'Fessa. --RoadDog

YOGI BERRA SAYS: I don't know if they were men or women running naked across the field. They were wearing bags over their heads.

Wednesday, May 18, 2011

TV Cancellations 2011: Sad to See These Ten Go

U came across a Yahoo list of 44 TV shows that have been cancelled as of right now. I didn't watch or like 34 of them, so no problem, but there were ten that I did enjoy.

These first six were good and I watched them every chance I got:

*&(% MY DAD SAYS-- CBS-- Besides Shatner, I liked the older brother and his wife.
CHAOS-- CBS-- Great premise. They didn't give it much of a chance.

DEFENDERS-- CBS-- A different sort of lawyer. I always like Jim Belushi.
BETTER WITH YOU-- ABC-- I liked the generational thing on romance, especially the parents.

CHASE-- NBC-- A guilty pleasure
THE EVENT-- NBC-- Like those sci-fis

These four I am really going to miss:

LAW AND ORDER:LA-- NBC-- Wasn't good at first, but they had really hit on the cast the second time around.

FRIDAY NIGHT LIGHTS-- NBC-- Who would have thought a sports-centered show could be so deep?
DETROIT 1-8-7-- ABC-- Great cast and shows. There is no reason this should be cancelled.
OUTSOURCED-- NBC-- Really funny people in a cast that transcends cultures and brings better understanding. I'll miss this one the most.

TV Will Be the Worse for Their Loss, Especially the Last Four. --RoadDog

YOGI BERRA SAYS: 90% of the game is half mental.

Beach Music Top 40 from 1962-- Part 3

"Fessa John Hook compiled this list as there were no actual Beach Music charts back then. He took existing charts and popular Beach songs from 1962 to put it together.

20. WHAT TO DO-- Drifters
19. SWEETS FOR MY SWEET-- Drifters
18. DON'T PLAY THAT SONG-- Ben E. King
17. SEE SEE BABY-- Freddie King

14. HOMESICK-- Jimmy Ricks
13. YOU BETTER MOVE ON-- Arthur Alexander
11. A CERTAIN GIRL-- Ernie K. Doe

Top Ten Up Next. --RoadDog

YOGI BERRA SAYS: Half the lies they tell about me aren't true.

Tuesday, May 17, 2011

It's Them, Not Me: Where's Our Gas Decrease?

Last Wednesday, oil prices dropped almost $6 and that is on top of a big drop the week before, but we sure haven't seen any of it at the pumps. The boys at Big Oil are keeping that price right up there.

Last week, gas in Fox Lake dropped to $4.24 for a few days then went back to $4.27. Yesterday I saw it back at $4.24. Gas in Spring Grove dropped from $4.40 to $4.36.

If oil prices had gone up as much as it has dropped, we would have seen a dollar increase at least and on an hourly basis.

The reasons for dropping oil are there: the government reports increasing stockpiles, stronger dollar and demand is weaker. It should be going down, but someone is going for another quarter of huge profits.

At least, gas is not going up. We still, however, have Big Oil's vaunted summer driving season coming up which is a good excuse to raise gas some more.

I'm still hoping they get the price up to $5 to $6 and get the powers that be to actually do something to prevent them from doing this again. If they can't learn to play well with others, they should have their playground privileges revoked.

Really Getting Tired of This. --RoadDog

YOGI BERRA SAYS: This ain't funny.

First Beach Music Artist and Song Induction

Coastal Carolina University in South Carolina had a ceremony Sunday to induct the first class of artists and songs into the new Beach Music Hall of Fame which will be located at the school.

Eight performers were inducted: Hank Ballard & the Midnighters, Ruth Brown, The Clovers, Fats Domino, The Drifters, Louis Jordan, Amos Milburn and Big Joe Turner.

First ten songs inducted:

AIN'T THAT A SHAME-- Fats Domino

NIP SIP-- Clovers

Some Mighty Good Stuff. --RoadDog

YOGI BERRA SAYS: The towels were so thick I could hardly close my suitcase.

JSS: Chain Saw-- Frost-- The Surf's Back

JSS-- Just Some Stuff.

1. CHAIN SAW-- I have a small electric chain saw that I need to use on the part of one of my Bradford pear trees that fell down in a fall windstorm. It is too much to cut by hand. The only problem is that I am scared of that chain saw. I've never used one before and heard too many horror stories.

Just like motorcycles. I think it would be a great road experience, but, alas, I'm too scared.

2. FROST-- Believe it or not, there was actually a light frost on the front window of the '85 Firebird which was parked outside the garage last night. I can't take this Global Warming anymore. I thought it was supposed to be getting warmer.

3. THE SURF'S BACK-- Sitting here a-typin' with my two little fingers and listening to the Surf, 94.9 FM, out of North Myrtle Beach, South Carolina, playing all that great Beach Music. Good to have it back after it was shut down for several months.

It's good to have Ted Bell back on his old station, but I sure do miss Billy Smith who died several years ago.

Little Old Scaredy-Cat Me. --RoadDog

YOGI BERRA SAYS: While guest of honor at an awards banquet, "Thank you for making this day necessary."

Monday, May 16, 2011

Beach Music Top 40 from 1962-- Part 2

Dome More of 'Fessa John Hook's Top 40 Beach Songs of 1962. That's 49 years ago, almost a half century.

29. SOOTHE ME-- Simms Twins
28. HAVING A PARTY-- Sam Cooke

27. PLAYBOY-- Marvelettes
26. ANY DAY NOW-- Chuck Jackson
25. DUKE OF EARL-- Gene Chandler

24. PLEASE MR. POSTMAN-- Marvelettes
23. LAH-TEE-LA-TAH-- Falcons
21. I NEED YOUR LOVING-- Don Gardner and Dee Dee Ford

All but #29 and #23 made the national top 40.

All Those Years Ago. --RoadDog

YOGI BERRA SAYS: Never answer anonymous letters.

Saturday, May 14, 2011

JSS: Crummy Weather-- Osama, Not Obama-- Great Fish Fry

JSS-- Just Some Stuff.

1. CRUMMY WEATHER-- After a fairly decent week, we arrive at the weekend with 50 degrees, blustery wind and rain bursts. Tomorrow, the high is expected to be 46. And, we can't even blame it on the infamous bad-weather-bringing Round Lake Carnival as it closed last week (unless they extended one more week which wouldn't surprise me).

Must be some of this Global Warming I hear so much about.

2. OSAMA, NOT OBAMA-- I try, but still confuse the two names when talking to folks. We did not kill Obama, it was the other guy as I have been corrected many times.

3. GREAT FISH FRY-- Yesterday drove to Lake Geneva, Wisconsin, and had the world's greatest fish fry at Popeye's (not the chicken chain), using a coupon they sent for my 60th birthday coming up in ten days. We got the broiled/fried combo with potato pancakes.

Great view of Geneva Lake, the 1930s Riviera Docks and the 1900s Gage Marine steamships.

Pretty Miserable Weather. --RoadDog

YOGI BERRA SAYS: Always go to other people's funerals. Otherwise, they might not come to yours.

It's Them, Not Me: Bin Laden's Sons-- Let 'Em Know-- A Little Osama Humor


I watch Osama's sons being upset over his "murder" or "execution" by US forces. I wonder how they felt about his "murders" and "executions" of almost 3,000 innocent people almost ten years ago.

Plus, they more than likely knew what he was up to before 9-11 and also knew his whereabouts all this time. I'd have to say they are as guilty as their father.


And then there are those supporters of Osama who want to know where he was buried at sea. I say, let them know the exact coordinates, then blast anyone who goes to the site.


Route 66 friend Lulu sent along two Osama jokes that I felt obliged to include here.

BIN LADEN'S LAST WORDS: Pizza? I didn't order pizza.

THE NEW BIN LADEN DRINK: Two shots and a splash of water.

A Little Humor Helps Deal With the Pain. --RoadDog

Friday, May 13, 2011

Beach Music Top 40 from 1962-- Part 1

Fessa' John Hook is playing songs from 1962 on his spot on Cashbox Music website at http://www.cashboxmagazine.com/countdown/beachmusicweekly. You can listen to all 40 songs plus all of the Honorable Mention ones.

Some of these songs will be familiar to those of us growing up and listening to the music back then, but not me.

I didn't start listening to pop radio until after the Beatles in 1964. But I did listen to the oldies. Many of the other songs are what are considered to be classic beach and as such, I am familiar with them.

40. GROW CLOSER TOGETHER-- Impressions
39. MAKE IT BE ME-- Flares
37. SOUL TWIST-- King Curtis
36. SHERRY-- Four Seasons

35. I KNOW-- Barbara George
33. I WANT A GUY-- Marvelettes
32. I'M TORE DOWN-- Freddie King
31. GREEN ONIONS-- Booker T. & the MGs

Give It a Listen. --RoadDog

YOGI BERRA SAYS: When you come to a fork in the road, take it.

Thursday, May 12, 2011

NTN's First Quarter-- Part 1

For those of youy who don't know what this business is, NTN Buzztime is a trivia service that you see on TVs in bars, much like the Who Wants to be a Millionaire TV show or the movie "Slumdog Millionaire." Kind of an easier Jeopardy where at least you get possible answers.

As we get ready to drive up to Donovan's Reef in Twin Lakes, Wisconsin, to play our weekly round of NTN and get on the top twenty board as we do most Thursdays.

I came across NTN Buzztime's first quarter profit statement. In short, they lost $300,000, down to $6 million. A big part of this loss was the drop in sites offering their services, now 3,888 from 4.041 the same period last year.

CEO Michael Bush says they are working on stronger venue relationships.

HOW NTN COULD DO BETTER (But they'd never listen to me)

It sure would be nice if they did this. Granted, in the bar and restaurant business, there is going to be lots of turnover as businesses close and open. But what the company shouldn't be losing are the places that have their service and then drop it because so few people are playing.

This is in large part due to NTN's selling their service and then leaving the places to get people playing. Most places don't have any idea how to do this. NTN representatives should work with bar owners and show them the ropes and tricks to get customers playing. This instead of, "Here it is. See ya later."

A big thing they can do is train the bartenders. These folks are the key. On more than one occasion, we've gone into places that we saw had NTN, asked the bartender for a board and that person had no idea what we were talking about.

This isn't going to get people playing.

I've Got More to Say at a Later Date. --RoadDog

YOGI BERRA SAYS: I always thought the record would stand until it was broken.

No wonder that duck gets so upset.

Movie Scratches: Arthur-- RIO-- Borrowed-- Thor

A quick look at today's movies.

The number in front is how many I've seen this year, then the movie, date seen, where and cost.

29. ARTHUR-- Fox Lake $4-- "Driving Miss Daisy" Part 2. Can lots of money buy you happiness?

30. RIO-- Fox Lake $5.50-- (Non 3-D) Birds of a feather dance together. Blu learns to fly. More color than you can compute.

31. SOMETHING BORROWED-- Fox Lake $4-- Beautiful people and their Heinies. Poor Evan.

32. THOR-- Fox Lake $4-- Norse gods interact with modern-day humans. Who'd a'thought. Thor learns a lesson.

Why Would I Want a Piece of Candy When leaving? --RoadDog

YOGI BERRA SAYS: Nobody goes there anymore because it is too crowded.

Wednesday, May 11, 2011

Civil War in Illinois-- Part 6: Old Gas Station-- Wishing Well-- Oval Barns-- Lincoln Highway-- Scholarship-- Alumni Association--- Athletics

Stopped at the old Standard Oil station in Odell where we ran into two people from France driving Route 66. Ate in Odell at Misty's Wishing Well. Great food at reasonable prices. Too full for the homemade pie.

Drove Illinois Highway 47 north to the Lincoln Highway in Elburn, counting five oval barns along the way. There was one oval barn on the Lincoln.

Met with our scholarship advisor at Altgeld Hall and put another $11,000 into our education scholarship, making it fully funded. Also joined the NIU Alumni Association and looked into joined the NIU athletic group.

The grass definitely needed cutting by the time we got back, so cut it before going over to the Dill Pickle for the 35 cent jumbo wings.

As Usual, a Great Time in Illinois. --RoadDog

Tuesday, May 10, 2011

Civil War in Illinois-- Part 5: Gas Gouge-- Chili-- Plams Grill-- More History-- Hooter's-- Bob and Ringo's

MAY 3rd

I was shocked by the station by the TraveLodge that had jumped its price since yesterday by 27 CENTS!! to $4.20. Gas prices were all over the place in Springfield, Illinois. Some places were still at $3.93, many others $4 and over.

Stopped at Joe Rogers for chili since we'd heard so much about it. It was ok, but way too greasy. Hard to eat without getting some on yourself.

Drove Route 66 to Atlanta. Stopped at the Lincoln Visitors Center. Had that great pork tenderloin, the best, at Palms Grill in Atlanta, then went next door to the Atlanta History Museum and did some Civil War research.

Took the old 66 Bypass, Veterans Parkway, in Bloomington and had to use On-Star (which comes with the car for six months) to find the Hooters where we played NTN. I love Hooter's having NTN, but with so few playing, I doubt they'll keep it.

Drove into Pontiac and stopped at Bob and Ringo's, a very unique bar just off the square and had drinks before checking into the Super 8 for the night.

Having Good Times on 66. --RoadDog

YOGI BERRA SAYS: I think Little League is wonderful. It keeps the kids out of the house.

Movie Scratches: Lincoln-- Limitless-- Code-- Highness

A quick look at some of the movies I have seen recently at the movies.

25. LINCOLN LAWYER-- 4-13-- Fox Lake $4-- Who's double crossing who?

26. LIMITLESS-- 4-14-- Fox Lake Free-- Brilliance through chemicals for the GRBs.

27. SOURCE CODE-- 4-19-- Fox Lake $5.50-- Groundhog Day vs. a homegrown terrorist on a train.

28. YOUR HIGHNESS-- 4-20-- Fox Lake $4-- Some funny, some stupid. Could have been a whole lot better had they gone for Monty Pythons instead of high school locker room. Would not recommend.

Hey, Pass the Salt. --RoadDog

YOGI BERRA SAYS: The future ain't what it used to be.

Monday, May 9, 2011

A Mighty Good Weekend

Friday, May 6th

THE TANK-- sat out on the patio in the "warm weather" and enjoyed the $1 bottles and watching the Bulls game on TV. Went to the LEGION on the way home and saw the end of the game.

Saturday, May 7th

We did the Chain Crawl on its opening day. Thirty-seven bars and one summer to do all of them (and get your passport stamped).

The kick-off was at DOCKERS on Pistakee Lake. We were by car, but some braved the cold and boated. Next stop, the 1880s MINEOLA, badly in need of work.

The rest of the folks went to otter places. Barb, Glen, Liz and I went to the SQUAW CREEK BAR where I had my Derby mint julep drink. Last stop at the LEGION for the Kentucky Derby and to laugh at the silly-looking hats. We even had girls in the place wearing those hats.

Sunday, May 8th

CHINA BUFFET for crab legs, shrimp, roast beef, ham and salmon. Then, SQUAW CREEK and back to the LEGION. Watched a great NBA playoff game at MARGARITAVILLE, but unfortunately, the Bulls lost. Called Mom as well.

Not a Bad Three Days. --RoadDog

YOGI BERRA SAYS: I really didn't say everything I said.

The United States of Shame-- Part 1

I came across a map of the United States with every state having something that I doubt they list in their travel brochures, but each state has something to be ashamed of. They lead all other states in these categories.

I found this at the Pleated Pants web site.

WASHINGTON-- Bestiality
OREGON-- Homeless population
CALIFORNIA-- Air Pollution

MONTANA-- Drunk Driving
IDAHO-- Weakest government influence
NEVADA-- Crime

ARIZONA-- Alcoholism
WYOMING-- Fatal car crashes
UTAH-- porn usage
COLORADO-- Cocaine Use (Rocky Mountain High, You Know.)

You can find more information at http://pleated-jeans.com/2011/01/24/the-united-states-of-shamme-chart/

A Real Public Relations Nightmare. --RoadDog

YOGI BERRA SAYS: If you don't know where you're going, you might end up some place else.

Saturday, May 7, 2011

Number One Songs This Date: May 7, 2011-- Part 2

All these were number one songs according to Billboard on this date.

1968 HONEY-- Bobby Goldsboro (Gag!)
1967 THE HAPPENING-- Supremes
1966 MONDAY, MONDAY-- Mamas and Papas

1964 HELLO DOLLY-- Louis Armstrong
1963 I WILL FOLLOW HIM-- Little Peggy March
1962 SOLDIER BOY-- Shirelles
1961 RUNAWAY-- Del Shannon
1960 STUCK ON YOU-- Elvis Presley

1951 HOW HIGH THE MOON-- Les Paul and Mary Ford
1941 AMOPOLA (PRETTY LITTLE POPPY)-- Jimmy Dorsey (Hmmn!)
1921 O-H-I-O (O-MY!O)-- Al Jolson

1911 I LOVE THE NAME OF MARY-- Will Oakland
1901 TELL ME, PRETTY MAIDEN-- Harry McDonough and Grace Spencer

Going Way Back. --RoadDog

YOGI BERRA SAYS: If the world were perfect, it wouldn't be.

Number One Songs This Date: May 7, 2011-- Part 1

Almost forgot to do this for May. My excuse, anyway, is that we were on the road May 1st. And, I'm sticking to it.

As usual, from Josh Hosler's excellent site www.joshhosler.biz/NumberOneinHistory/SelectMonth.htm

2011 E.T.-- Katy Perry
2001 ALL FOR YOU- Janet
1991 JOYRIDE-- Roxette
1981 MORNING TRAIN (9 TO 5)-- Sheena Easton

1980 CALL ME-- Blondie
1979 REUNITED-- Peaches & Herb
1978 NIGHT FEVER-- Bee Gees
1977 HOTEL CALIFORNIA-- Eagles (And, you can't get your deposit back.)
1976 WELCOME BACK-- John Sebastion (All you Sweathogs)

1975 HE DON'T LOVE YOU (LIKE I DO)-- Tony Orlando & Dawn
1974 THE LOCO-MOTION-- Grand Funk (Little Eva says you stole her song.)
1973 TIE A YELLOW RIBBON ROUND THE OLD OAK TREE-- Tony Orlando & Dawn (From the land of the long song titles.)
1972 THE FIRST TIME EVER I SAW YOUR FACE-- Roberta Flack (Likewise)
1971 JOY TO THE WORLD-- Three Dog Night (What was the name of that bullfrog?)
1970 AMERICAN WOMAN-- Guess Who (OK, you Canadians)

"Stay Away From Me."-- RoadDog

YOGI BERRA SAYS: He hits from both sides of the plate. He's amphibious.

Friday, May 6, 2011

For Mama on Mother's Day

Well, the Drive's A to Z ended yesterday afternoon with Bobby Skafish, so things are getting back to normal at the station.

We had a Ten at Ten today for the first time since last Wednesday. Wuth Mother's Day coming up this Sunday, the feature was on songs having to do with Mom. Ones with an asterisk are ones Liz and I figured Bob Stroud would play.

MAMA, I'M COMING HOME-- Ozzy Osbourne

YOUR MAMA DON'T DANCE-- Loggins & Messina*
MAMA KIN-- Aerosmith

JULIA-- Beatles*
MOTHER-- Pink Floyd
TELL MAMA-- Savoy Brown

Please Don't Let Me Forget to Call Like Last Year. --RoadDog

It's Them, Nor Me: What Goes Down, Should Go Down: Those Zany Guys at Big Oil

I saw last night that the price of oil went down almost $10. Just a week ago, I saw that US usage of gas was down 2% and dropping. If we still had the law of supply and demand, a foundation of capitalistic economy, that would mean that the price of gas at the pump should have gone down.

It hasn't!!

Today, I drove into Crystal Lake, Illinois, to have the Dakota's emissions test. Gas from McHenry to CL was anywhere from $4.26 to $4.40. It hadn't dropped from yesterday.

Now, if oil had gone up $10 a barrel yesterday, would Big Oil have raised the price at the pump significantly? You bet they would have. The same if gas usage had gone up 2%. We would have seen the increase at the pumps in a matter of hours if not minutes.

Something Really Does Need to Be Done About Those Guys Until They Show That They Can Learn to Play Well With Others. --RoadDog


EVery BLoomin' THing-- Early May 2011

I've already had to cut the grass twice. Hope I can AFFORD to cut the grass this summer.

The dandelions just came in with a fine crop yesterday. Most of the neighborhood has no dandelion activity in their yards, but there are a few of us reprobates. Thinking about making some dandelion wine.

Some of the trees are budding out, led by the Japanese lilacs. The forsythia bushes came in real good this year.

I have some creeping vines with blue flowers right now, plus all those daffodils and hyacinths (both large and grape) are now being joined by the tulips.

I have one perennial with yellow flowers getting ready to burst into bloom along with white, red and lots of lavender creeping phlox.

I have a bit of a cold and because of it haven't been out to work in the yard the last couple of days.

Today, I bought two red perennials (coral bells?) and a three seat covered swing at Meijer's in McHenry.

Later today, I will get out and use a spray to kill the dandelions and crab grass as well as fertilize. I still need to cut up the half of one of my Bradbury pear trees that was blown down last fall.

I Love This Time of the Year. --RoadDog

YOGI BERRA SAYS: A nickel ain't worth a dime anymore. (I can just see that duck shaking his head.)

Thursday, May 5, 2011

The Drive's A to Z: Spring 2011-- Part 6

Bob Stroud is up right now, still playing the letter "W."


WILD HORSES-- Rolling Stones
WILD NIGHTS-- Van Morrison
WILD WILD LIFE-- Talking Heads
WILD WORLD-- Cat Stevens

WIND OF CHANGE-- Scorpions
THE WINDOW-- Steve Miller Band

WINNING-- Santana
WISHING YOU WERE HERE-- Chicago (Besides the title, Chicago sure sounded a lot like Pink Floyd on this one.


Hard to believe the Drive has been here for ten years. Sure have enjoyed it.

The Drive's for Me. --RoadDog

YOGI BERRA SAYS: You can observe a lot of things just by watching.

The Drive's A to Z: Spring 2011-- Part 5

This morning, I tuned in while these were playing:

WHIPPING POST-- Allman Brothers

WHITE BIRD-- It's a Beautiful Day
WHITE RABBIT-- Jefferson Airplane


WALK AWAY-- James Gang
WALK OF LIFE-- Dire Straits
WALK ON WATER-- Eddie Money
WALK THIS WAY-- Aerosmith

"Witchy Woman" by the Eagles Playing Right Now at 10:49 am CDST. --RoadDog

YOGI BERRA SAYS: We made too many wrong mistakes.

The Gas Gouge By the Numbers

It just keeps getting more and more hurtful. Here are some numbers:

$38 BILLION-- Big Oil's most recent reported profit.

3 MONTHS-- How long it took them to make that profit January to March.

ALMOST NONE-- What Big Oil claims to be their profit from increased gas prices.

2%-- Drop in US gas usage in the last three months

0-- The amount Big Oil dropped gas prices because of this 2% drop.

BIG TIME-- the amount Big Oil would have raised gas prices with a 2% increase in usage.

$4.37-- Price of gas here in Spring Grove, Illinois, last night.

NEW RECORD-- This is the highest I've ever seen gas prices, even beating out how high it was the last time Big Oil did this.

THREE-- The number of road trips I have cancelled so far because of the gouge.

This "Ain't" Funny. --RoadDog

Even Yogi Berra doesn't think this is funny.

The Drive's A to Z: Spring 2001-- Part 4

I wasn't expecting that this great WDRV effort would still be on when we returned from Springfield, Illinois, yesterday, but it was.

Last night, they were doing the letter "T." Right now, they're in the letter "W." They expect to finish sometime this afternoon after starting the show April 27th. I usually listen to Beach Music in the morning on WNCT, but not when this is on.

Last night, these songs were playing:

TUESDAY'S GONE-- Lynyrd Skynyrd
TUPELO HONEY-- Van Morrison

TURN ME LOOSE-- Loverboy

TUSK-- Fleetwood Mac


UNDER MY THUMB-- Rolling Stones
UNDER MY WHEELS-- Alice Cooper
UNDER THE BRIDGE-- Red Hot Chili Peppers

You Can Check Out All 2,000 at www.wdrv.com.

"Why Can't We Be Friends" by War on Right Now. --RoadDog

YOGI BERRA SAYS: It's like deja vu all over again.

Wednesday, May 4, 2011

Civil War in Illinois-- Part 4: A Cozy-- Mr. Lincoln-- Norb's-- A Curve-- Southside


Lunch at the Cozy Dog and had the usual, four Cozies, large fries and two drinks ($8.95). Found a new Acadia book on Springfield, Illinois for sale, but didn't buy it. As usual, enjoyed reading the Route 66 magazines.

Not sure if we like the Cozy Dogs or fries best. What's the best way to eat a Cozy Dog. I have mine with mustard and raw onions. Met two girls from Poland and a guy from Mongolia who were driving the length of Route 66. Just left Chicago this morning.

Spent the afternoon researching Illinois Civil War regiments from along Route 66 counties at the Abraham Lincoln Presidential Library.

Liz and I later went to Norb Andy's on Capitol Avenue which is finally open again. Sure glad to get back in the place where we had our first horseshoe sandwiches. It's been closed for several years.

Then to Curve Inn and Southside Pub at the TraveLodge where we were staying.

Another Great Day in Mr. Lincoln's Hometown. --RoadDog

Tuesday, May 3, 2011

Civil War in Illinois 2011-- Part 3: Mr. Lincoln-- Bars-- Grazing


We spent the afternoon at the Abraham Lincoln Presidential Library and Museum. We hadn't been to the museum since it opened six years ago. It now costs $12 for adults and is worth every bit of it.

We walked and walked and walked. Looked and looked.

Love the Ghosts in the Library and Lincoln's Eyes shows. Also the walk through Abe's pre-presidential life and the Civil War. You've got to see the Civil War in Four Minutes.

Afterwards, we walked across the street to the library and looked at the Boys in Blue exhibit about Illinois' Civil War soldiers. Quite interesting as well. Ran into a retired couple from Dekalb, who had worked for the university and had a nice long talk.


Next stop was Scooter's on 5th Street, next to the car wash with the great old neon sign. It used to be a favorite watering hole of ours when it was called George Ranks', but it had been closed for several years until opening last year.

Ran into some motorcyclists in town from near St. Louis. They had to go back, something I took pity on them because it had turned very cold and rain started. Talk about a miserable ride.

Then on to a huge crowd at the Golden Corral for that steak and baby back ribs.

Last stop was at Route 66's Curve Inn for a nightcap. This is where we heard about Bin Laden's death.

Got a room at the TraveLodge.

Always a Great Time in Springfield. --RoadDog

Monday, May 2, 2011

Osama bin Laden is Dead!!!

Turns out, the biggest coward and best hidey-cat in history has been "hiding in plain sight" within a mile of a major military base some 90 miles from the capital in Pakistan. Yesterday, US military special ops finally brought him to justice.

Osama bin Laden was killed. Watching TV right now at 10:36 am. His body was buried at sea and DNA tests have proven that the body was of the mass murderer.

We were here in Springfield, Illinois. last night having a few brews at the Curve Inn, an old (1930s) Route 66 roadhouse we like to visit whenever in town. The music was loud, beer cold and the usual characters in house.

All TVs were on games. We were watching the Phillies-Mets game when the bartender changed it to CNN. No sound, but there was a sign that Obama was going to make an announcement from the White House. This would have to be something mighty important to be this late.

Eventually, the words that bin Laden had been killed flashed along the bottom of the screen. It took a moment to sink in. We yelled out that bin Laden was dead (as most weren't watching.) Immediately, the bar broke out in cheers and many toasts made.

The bartender turned off the jukebox, turned up the sound on the TV and everyone began watching and cheering. Smles all around.

We went back to the motel where we saw President Obama make the announcement then stayed up way too late watching breaking news. We saw the crowd grow from just a few to hundreds outside the White House.

Great News.

Civil War in Illinois 2011-- Part 2: SCV-- Lincoln's Home-- Butler-- A Hoot-- A Cap-- and a Fiesta


Spent much of the day at the Crowne Plaza Hotel in Springfield, Illinois at the annual Sons of Confederate Veterans (SCV) Illinois Division Conference. We were essentially enveloped by the much-larger Illinois Knights of Columbus Convention.

We had 30 division members in attendance, out of 160 statewide. One camp has disbanded and another is gone, bringing us down to five camps, the minimum we can have to be a division in the SCV. It is difficult operating "behind enemy lines" as we do. Lack of members and great distances are really big problems.

Camp commanders gave their reports and I was introduced as the commander of the newest, yet-to-be-named, camp.

During lunch, Gale Red gave an excellent presentation on the Alton, Illinois, Confederate prison camp.


Upon adjournment, the group went to Abraham Lincoln's home for a group picture, then several of us drove out to the Camp Butler National Cemetery where we visited the Confederate graves and monument.

Then Liz and I went to Hooter's to play NTN (our 28th new site this year and 938th overall). Then, we went to Capital City and enjoyed the $1.50 draft beers while playing NTN with JJ. Last stop was at La Fiesta for shrimp nachos and giant mugs (32-0z) of beer.

A Long Day. --RoadDog

Sunday, May 1, 2011

Civil War in Illinois 2011-- Part 1: NIU-- Route 66-- Springfield

In honor of the Sesquicentennial of the Civil War, I am doing research on finding Civil War stuff here in Illinois and especially anything along Route 66. No battles or skirmishes took place here, but most every county court house has a monument or cannons from it. Plus, there are many cemeteries where Civil War veterans are buried as well as monuments.

APRIL 29th

Left home with the odometer showing 58 miles on the new Malibu. Instead of taking Il-47 to Dwight, we took Il-176 to Marengo then Il-23 south to Sycamore and Dekalb,

Drove around the campus of Northern Illinois (where we graduated from in 1973) and then south on Il-23 through Ottawa and Streeter to Pontiac.

Got dinner at the Old Log Cabin in Pontiac on Route 66. Great deal: 10 oz. top sirloin covered with onions and mushrooms, rolls, sweet potato tater tots (try saying that fast ten times) roll and salad for $9.99.

Toured the Route 66 Museum in Pontiac and saw Bob Waldmire's VW van and school bus home.

Drove Route 66 to Towanda and talked stopped at the Schenk Garage. Drove around Bloomington-Normal and stopped at Funk's Grove where we bought some sirup. Then a bathroom break at the Dixie.

On to Springfield. Played NTN at the BW3, Buffalo Wild Wings and got a room at the Stevenson Motel. Went to Capital City Bar and Grill and played NTN and met JJ. Last stop was La Fiesta Mexican Restaurant for big drafts and chips and salsa.

Gas was mostly $4.20 until Dekalb where it was $4.10 to $4.16. The lowest was $3.90 in Ottawa and $4.20 in nearby Streeter. From Pontiac to Springfield, it was $4.10. In Springfield it was $3.96.

A Long Day. --RoadDog

Trip Music and the Drive A to Z

We've been listening to nothing but Sirius XM radio on the trip, mostly channel 6, the Sixties. Now that is good stuff.

We even found a channel called RoadDog Trucking, but it is all talking. I'm not a big fan of talk radio.

Right now listening to WDRV, the Drive from Chicago over the internet.

The A to Z continued after a short break for Rock and Roll Roots.

They are in the letter "L" right now.

LA GOODBYE-- Ides of March
LA LADY-- Doors

Bob Stroud's Rock and Roll Roots featured Kings and Queens in honor of Friday's Royal Wedding.

I caught the last part of the show:

KINGS-- Steely Dan

KING TUT-- Steve Martin

I'M HENRY THE VIIITH, I AM-- Herman's Hermits


A Music I Go. --RoadDog