April 23, 2005

Holy Crap.

Filed under: Uncategorized — Jim @ 6:25 pm

I was once shooting the breeze with a British guy, and he excused himself explaining that he had to go “have a crap.”

I thought, “Have a crap? In this country, we don’t have a crap; we take a crap.”

Why would anyone want to have a crap? Who in their right mind would what to posses a crap? However, on second thought, why would anyone want to take a crap, when after haven taken it, one would necessarily have it. It would make more sense for us to leave a crap, or part with a crap, wouldn’t it?

I gave this a bit more thought and decided that the word “crap” as used above does not refer to the noun i.e. the end result of the process of defecation. But, what is its meaning? When the word “crap” is used with having or taking, does it refer to the act itself? I don’t think so, because one really doesn’t have the act of crapping any more than one takes the act of crapping.

Oh, but the British have walks, just as we take walks, and we also take trips, don’t we?

Thinking about this was beginning to make my hair hurt. It is, after all, all crap.

You’ve just gotten a peek into the kind of swill that swirled around in my cruller during this morning’s walk. Fortunately, I also sometimes think of things that are worth a crap.

More Jekyll Updates.

Filed under: Uncategorized — Jim @ 3:59 pm

Moogie’s thoughts on the raucous drunken brawl learning experience at the “Georgia Writers Workshop” are here. The post contains pics, and at the end of the post she provides a link to the entire photo album.

Ward (a/k/a Mr. Moogie) weighs in here and here.

The abundance of spirits at the event provided everyone with a spiritual experience.

April 22, 2005

Blog Western – Chapter One, A Winner.

Filed under: Uncategorized — Jim @ 9:08 pm

Dax Montana has kicked ass and taken names with Chapter One of the Blog Western, Chrisina’s latest excellent idea. The characters are colorful and the story is compelling.

I’m looking forward to the next chapter from Moogie.

Just farookin’ damn!

Passing This Along.

Filed under: Uncategorized — Jim @ 7:30 pm

Sluggo, of Sluggo Needs a Nap, directs us to a site entitled “Sexual Offenders.com,” which contains links to state-specific governmental sites that identify sexual offenders.

The site for New Jersey is here. Before you can enter the New Jersey Site you must affirmatively agree to the conditions on the main page, which include a statement of the prohibitions against the misuse of information contained in the registry.

Considerably more comprehensive than some of the other state-specific sites I accessed, the New Jersey site permits searches by geographic location (county, zip code, locality or street name), name, date of birth, physical characteristics, vehicle description or license plate number.

Each entry contains the name and address of the registrant along with a detailed description and a photograph. The entries also identify the make, model, year and license plate number of each registrant’s vehicle. Finally, each entry contains a description of the sexual offense of which the registrant was convicted.

I agree with Sluggo when he observes that there is a serious potential for the misuse of the information contained in the registry, but I also agree with him that the registry is a good idea. I believe that nature of the crimes of which these people have been convicted and the tendency for sex offenders to be repeat offenders, outweigh the potential for abuse. In addition, those who would misuse the information face criminal sanctions.

I urge those with children to periodically take a few minutes to check the registry for your area.

It could save your kid’s life.

April 21, 2005

Is It About the State or A Woman?

Filed under: Uncategorized — Jim @ 10:02 pm

Last week when Rob’s brother gave me goose bumps when he sang Georgia on my Mind, I recalled a question posed to me a while back by The Quietly Sinister Linda, one of the Usual Suspects. She asked, “Is that song about the state, or is it about a woman named ‘Georgia’?”

I immediately answered, “Of course, it’s about the state,” but then she suggested that I consider the lyrics. When I did so, I was less sure about my knee-jerk response, and now I admit to not knowing the answer.

Pointing out that Georgia on my Mind is the official song of the State of Georgia doesn’t answer the question. This is so, because Georgia on my Mind became the state song in 1979, but Stuart Gorrell wrote the lyrics to Hoagy Carmichael’s beautiful melody forty-nine years earlier.

In addition, we typically don’t hear all the lyrics. The lyrics that one customarily associates with the tune (e.g. Ray Charles’, Willie Nelson’s, and Billie Holiday’s versions) consist of only the refrain.

Georgia, Georgia, the whole day through

Just an old sweet song keeps Georgia on my mind.

Georgia, Georgia, a song of you
Comes as sweet and clear as moonlight through the pines.
Other arms reach out to me

Other eyes smile tenderly
Still in peaceful dreams I see
The road leads back to you.
Georgia, Georgia, no peace I find
Just an old sweet song keeps Georgia on my mind.

To me, the words of the refrain, taken at face value, could either refer to the State or to a woman, no?

The version, adopted by the Georgia State Legislature (which presumably is the version actually penned by Stuart Gorrell) contains a verse (in italics) before the refrain.

Melodies bring memories
That linger in my heart

Make me think of Georgia
Why did we ever part?
Some sweet day when blossoms fall

And all the world’s a song
I’ll go back to Georgia
‘Cause that’s where I belong

Georgia, Georgia, the whole day through

Just an old sweet song keeps Georgia on my mind.

Georgia, Georgia, a song of you
Comes as sweet and clear as moonlight through the pines.
Other arms reach out to me
Other eyes smile tenderly
Still in peaceful dreams I see
The road leads back to you.
Georgia, Georgia, no peace I find
Just an old sweet song keeps Georgia on my mind.

It seems to me that the words to the not-often-sung verse likewise do not provide an answer to the question.

I’m stumped.

Last fall in Helen, Georgia at the Blogtoberfest, I posed the question to my friend “Georgia,” who lives in the State of Georgia (and who also attended the recent drunken brawl “Georgia Writers Workshop”). She instantly replied, “The State of Georgia is a woman.”

I kinda like that answer.

Waddya think?

April 20, 2005

American Legion Tonight.

Filed under: Uncategorized — Jim @ 6:16 pm

My blogging time tonight will be spent at my American Legion Post serving as one of the judges to select delegates for New Jersey Boys State. I have done this for the last couple of years, and, although I’m pretty well cooked from a hard day at the salt mine, it is always uplifting to see good kids doing their best to compete for one of the spots in an excellent program.

April 19, 2005

Jekyll Lag, Jekyll Pics, and Mr. Blogroll

Filed under: Uncategorized — Jim @ 8:06 pm

Jekyll Lag — I have it. It is a distant cousin to jet lag, which I typically experience a day or so after a long, exhausting trip. I am seriously tired tonight, so my current plan (barring an unexpected burst of energy) is to tell those who didn’t click all the links in the previous post where they can find pictures of the weekend of booze, song and debauchery the Georgia Writers Workshop and to do a bit of updating to Mr. Blogroll.

OK, so the first order of business is to let you know that pictures are currently up at Meanderings here and here. Sam, at The Brier Patch, has them posted here.

I had intended to buy a disposable camera (fearing that the odds were better than 50-50 that I would lose my “real” camera). However, our only shopping forays were to the grocery store and the liquor store. So much for the disposable camera. I am grateful (I think) that some people had sense enough to bring a camera and use it. Others may post pictures in the next few days. If that happens and the pictures are not scandalous, I shall let you know where to find them.

The next order of business is to update Mr. Blogroll.

First, I would like to add those who attended the Georgia Writers Workshop and who heretofore were not already listed on Mr. Blogroll. They are:

Moogie’s World

Old Weird Ward

You Bitch


Jersey Blogger Lynne of Shamrocketship has was convinced by John Shabe of The Jersey Side to create a blog about her beloved home town of Red Bank, New Jersey, the home of a couple excellent saloons and some very good music stores. The new enterprise is called Red Bank Journal.

Although she is not a new addition to Mr. Blogroll, I am happy as a clam to report that Kelly of Suburban Blight caught the blogging bug at the Georgia Writers Workshop and fired up her blog again. Welcome back to the Laughing Academy!

Finally, I am pleased to say that Topdawg of Two Nervous Dogs is blogging again after a longish break. A talented writer and regular viewer of Deadwood, Topdawg has it going on. Note: Something is awry with the Two Nervous Dogs link. When typed it in [http://www.twonervousdogs.com] it works, but the link (copied and pasted) produces an error. I will drop Topdawg a note to see what’s up.

Go read.

That is all. Now I shall have a cigar. Thanks, Zonk! They were a mighty fine gift.

April 18, 2005

“I Didn’t Want it to End.”

Filed under: Uncategorized — Jim @ 9:00 pm

As I sat with Rob, Catfish, Dax, Zonker and Georgia at 5:30 in the morning on the second night of the “Georgia Writers Workshop,” I realized that I was still awake, because I knew that once I finally went to bed, it would be over, and I didn’t want it to end. Sure, there would still be Sunday morning to help clear out the rubble of the night before; there would be handshakes, and hugs from those who rose at about the same time I did; and there would be the promises to “do it again,” but I sure hated to see it end. I don’t know a better way to describe the experience.

Rob has often said that he never met a blogger he didn’t like, and I could not agree with him more.

The weekend started when I met Eric and Mrs. Straight White Guy at the Jacksonville Airport, as they would be riding with me to Jekyll. Having previously met them in Helen, Georgia in the fall, it took about one tenth of one second for the blabbing to begin. Of course, with the blabbing comes the almost-missed turns, requiring me to execute a couple quick highway Immelmanns. I could hear Mrs. Straight White Guy in the back seat grabbing for the “Holy Shit” handle over the door. I figure that she’s not used to doing highways with a Jersey Road Devil. In truth, she had nothing to worry about, because in Jersey we may not know shit about hunting gators, but we’re damned good at handling highway exits. It’s in our blood.

After we arrived at the hotel and checked in, I was about to cart my bags and guitar up to the second floor, when I heard a voice from the suite on the first floor say, “Well look who it is. Hey Jimbo, put that shit right down and get in here.” I was greeted by Rob, Catfish, Sam, Sam’s bride, Velociman, the Velocibride, Recondo 32 and the always-lovable Georgia, whose greeting consists of “Come here baby and give me a hug!” The room was already full of beer, liquor, and a five-gallon pail of the infamous Chatham Artillery Punch, which tasted infinitely better than it looked (a bit like the contents of a mondo spittoon). Eric and Mrs. SWG appeared a few minutes later, having followed the noise to Party Headquarters.

… and so it began….

Before long, Dax showed up, and so did Michele and husband Kevin. Next was Zonker (clearly the gentleman of the mob — he’s got the pictures, from Helen and from Jekyll – oy!) and then my already old buddy (even though we had not yet met) Christina. Christina was accompanied by her redheaded friend and bodyguard, who was excellent company and also damned easy on the eyes. Next Denny popped in, as did Kelley and Key, all of whom are survivors of the Helen Blogmeet.

Later, Mr. Helpful came around (from Seattle!). Winning the “prize” for traveling the farthest to get to Jekyll goes to go to Rube, who introduced us to Augie, his beautiful lady (who won my heart by presenting me with an excellent bottle of fine German brew), both straight from Germany! Sadie and her intended zoomed in, as did Ward (a/k/a Mr. Moogie). The following day Moogie came onto the scene, having swapped child-rearing duties with Ward. The last to arrive was jmflynny, who clearly must have taken a side trip to the Fountain of Youth before coming to Jekyll. I already knew that she is a wonderful writer, but I had no idea that she is also exceedingly pretty. I regret not having much of a chance to shoot the breeze with her. Next time, for sure.

On the first evening, after some introductory drinking, we all trekked off to watch Ken, a longtime blogger friend (not to be confused with my bodyguard Ken, who could not make this blogmeet) and his lady take vows on the beach, and we joined them in a ceremonial slug of Maker’s Mark. Some of the lady bloggers did readings at the ceremony, which was presided over the Right Reverend Recondo 32. It was cool, and it launched an evening of serious drinking, hell raising, bullshitting and music making that lasted into the wee, wee hours of the morning. We also placed a call to Jersey Blogger and the co-organizer of the Jersey Blogmeet, Kate. I wish she could have been there, but I know she was with us in spirit.

The next morning I ran into Eric at the continental breakfast, where he saw me do the “I need milk and lots of it” routine, which provided a solid base on which to have our real breakfast (cold beer) with Georgia, who was already sitting outside in the sun and doing a Pabst Blue Ribbon. In no time, the mob of Jekyll Vulgarians showed up to join us in a scintillating discussion of writing styles an afternoon of drinking, bullwhip cracking and, for the athletes in the group, a game of half-rubber (It’s a Southern game played with half a sponge ball and a broomstick – go figure).

I joined the group that broke away for a little solid food at a local eatery, where I had my first glass of “sweet tea,” (with a side order of beer, just to keep the buzz alive). I also ate a hushpuppy, something that one has a hard time finding in a state where most of the restaurants end in a vowel followed by an apostrophe “s.” (e.g. Tony’s, Angelo’s, Joey’s).

Following lunch, there was more literary discussions drinking and hell raising, until it was time to play poker. The Lovely Christina had organized the game and, considering that there were ten well-oiled players, it ran like a Swiss watch. Eric was the first to go down in flames, followed shortly thereafter by Yours Truly. Losing so early sucked, but it provided me with more time to concentrate on beer drinking and bullshitting. Rob, who regularly “cogitated” over his cards ended up beating out Catfish to take first place. Mrs. Sam took third. Rob wound up with the panties. Someone has pictures.

After dinner at a local steakhouse (“Tables for thirty-two, please, and we don’t have a lot of time to wait around”), we headed back to Party Headquarters for a night of serious partying

We were joined by Rob’s brother, who looks so much like Rob it is downright eerie. He is an ass-kicking guitar player, who can also sing his ass off, and he came to play. He and Rob have been playing and singing together for years and it shows. For some tunes we had a total of five guitars cooking, including Eric and Denny (who wowed the crowd with a couple surprise kazoo virtuoso performances). We were backed up by Kelley and Mrs. Sam, who I referred to as the “Blogettes,” and forevermore shall they be so known.

We played, sang and drank for hours, taking turns leading the way with tunes. For me, it just doesn’t get much better than that. I took a short break from pickin’ and grinnin’ to talk to my buddy Dash. Damn, I sure wish he could have been there too.

As the hour got later, people began to drift off to bed, no doubt propelled by ever-increasing blood-alcohol levels. Eventually we even put the guitars away. Finally, it was the wee hours of the morning, and there were just a few of us still awake, which brings me back to my original point.

I hated to see it end.

April 14, 2005

Pickin’ and Packin’

Filed under: Uncategorized — Jim @ 10:25 pm

OK, so it’s the night before the Display of Drunken Debauchery of Egomaniacal Bloggers Georgia Writers (Writers’?) Workshop. I missed Woodstock (I was in service at the time), but I’m not missing Jekyll, the Yasgur’s Farm of the 21st Century (at least, for me). I’m stoked.

Damned if I can figure out what to pack, because I don’t really give much of a shit about that as long as I remember to bring my money, credit cards, glasses (the sign of a “Woodstock Generation Guy”), and my farookin’ guitar.

…..Fast Forward………

TJ and Mr. Surly just showed up, having come from the tax guy for a last minute tax return adjustment. We’re going to a local diner for diner food. I can put off packing yet again.

…..Fast Forward………

Ate a bunch of way too greasy (and, therefore, delicious) food, so now I really, really have to pack. No more putting it off.

……Fast Forward…….

Finished packing. I have a small suitcase full of what I currently think I will need. I really don’t know if I brought all the necessaries, but I did pack extra underwear, out of fear, instilled by my granny, that I might get hit with a bus and show up in the Emergency Room with dirty underwear. The ambulance people may shovel my guts off the street, but, by God, I’ll be wearing clean underwear.

I had done a bit of pickin’ last night to confirm that my fingers were still attached to my left hand and that they still moved on command. I had intended to do a bit more pickin’ tonight, but after the diner chow and a couple cocktails I think I’ll just pack Mr. Guitar and wing it in Jekyll.

Next stop, Newark Airport.

April 13, 2005

“Brilliant” Commentary

Filed under: Uncategorized — Jim @ 7:30 pm

About sixteen months ago I wrote a post about the violence between rival gangs in the Essex County Jail (Newark). The post continues to draw comments from what would appear to be the stellar citizens about whom the post was written.

I urge you to pop over to the post and read the “intelligent” commentary of some of society’s finest.

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