29 July 2008

I Can Breathe in a Small Town...

Saturday was a normal day here in country/suburban (the official description and moniker of my abode), in all the normalness I was reminded of how much of a small town it is.

First episode:  while mowing the grass my neighbor came over and asked me to help move a tree.  Not your usual request.  So I shut off the Gravely (I was mowing the three garden plots I did not plow this year) and moseyed over to have a looksee.  Sure enough a rotted tree had fell across the road.  While timbering towards the ground the tree nipped the electric wire and knocked it off the pole.  The wire fell a few feet, touched the dusktodawn lamp, causing one helluva spark and loud POP.  (Needless to say several homes were then without power, including yours truly).  

While my neighbor and I moved the tree all of the folk on the road came out to ascertain the whereabouts of the commotion.  They all inspected the tree and the electric wire and they all volunteered to call the electric company, some called the town and others called the police.  For about one half an hour the little street I live on was quite the place to be with the flashing lights, nosy passerbys and corralled neighbors.  Small town indeed.  Who would have thought a dead tree could cause such a commotion.

Second instance, later on that day I took the kids and walked down to the SEVN to exchange cucumbers for eggs, fair enough.  I was especially excited about the egss b/c earlier that day I had purchases a pound of locally raised bacon (tasted more like a pork chop than well seasoned bacon).  While hauling the kids the 200  yards from my door to the SEVN door a large white vehicle came slowly came to a stop at the end of the road.  I looked at the navigator and quickly recognized him as a church member whom I last saw in the hospital.  So in the middle of the road, with kids in two (literally in a wagon) I had a church "visit" discussing the called off marriage, paralyzation of legs, and new living arrangements.  While conducting this visit I also saw two other church members drive by and honk the horn.  Small town indeed.

On the topic of small town, yesterday while going to the Always on Sale store (see side bar for link) I learned the manager lives within 200 yards of my house...

24 July 2008

Friedman cries for more support

Friedman Cries for More Support
by G. Travis Norvell
July 24, 2008

The began as any day in Manhattan, lots of cars, lots of people and lots of grumpiness - but this day witnessed an all too common new phenomena: e-whining.  At approximately 9:42am  Thomas Friedman, Op-Ed columnist of the New York Times, ran outside of the New York Times building here on Eighth Avenue wailing, crying and plainly whining like a baby.  A small crowd gathered to watch Friedman's display of childish emotion.  Finally 22 minutes later a representative from the NY Times human resource department, Richard Bellevue, was able to calm down Mr. Friedman and asked what was wrong.  Mr. Friedman started to begin the emotional display again but Mr. Bellevue was able to nip in the bud, he asked him to take some deep breaths and calm down.  After the centering moment passed Mr. Friedman revealed to all of those gathered between 40th and 41st streets that not enough people were emailing his latest article, thus leaving him once again off of the top ten most emailed list.  

As Mr. Bellevue aided Mr. Friedman to his feet, Mr. Friedman (obviously embarrassed and down right angry) looked to the crowd and screamed:  "Listen people, I write good foreign -affairs articles. Everyone of you should be emailing my articles to 15 to 20 people each day.  And one more thing, stop waiting for me to appear on Charlie Rose where I dumb down my thoughts just so you can understand what is going on in the world."  Mr. Bellevue put his hand on Mr. Friedman's shoulder and led him through the revolving door. It was reported by some witnesses Mr. Friedman mumbled something about Nicholas Kristof not being able to hold his jockstrap.  

23 July 2008


First of all, my effort to start the online rumor that Parcells was McCain's top pick for the Vice President did not seem to get anywhere.  I did email the NY Times' top reporter covering the campaign, the reporter did answer my email saying the reporter had not heard that rumor and would be checking it out, and thanked me.  Apparently irony/sarcasm is not a trait of many Times reporters...oh well.

Second,  it has been two years since dad died.  My once fear of fragile memories, more like a folio than a encyclopedia has not materialized; I keep remembering things about him.  The other day the Gravely tractor was not working, so I tried and tried to figure out the problem.  Finally over a cup of coffee I approached it from dad's perspective, after a few minutes viola  the carburetor.   I only wish I had his truck, not the Toyota, the big GMC that he and I rebuilt - but what the hell am I gonna do with a full size 1976 GMC with a bored out 350 engine, a radical cam shaft, that gets at best 5 miles a gallon?  I suppose just sit in it, listen to some old tunes, drink a cold one and think about Pop.

It is also the 2nd birthday of #3.  His energy and presence has been a blessing.  I cant imagine life without him and #s 1 & 2.  Life is all around us...

I believe I am just now ready to start fly fishing again.  Perhaps this Fall and nice trip to the mountains of NH to catch some natives.  

15 July 2008

McCain's VP choice and another possible pick for Obama

I have thought long and hard about who should complete the McCain ticket, and now I am ready to reveal my first choice for Mac's vice presidency:  The Big Tuna - that's right Bill Parcells.  Can you imagine the press conferences?  Can you imagine the impact of ESPN actually covering a presidential election, this could be huge people.  If McCain choose Parcells first then who would Obama pick?  Not a problem:  Randy Macho Man Savage.  If anyone could go toe to toe with the Big Tuna in a debate it would have to be the Macho Man.

While I was in WV I conducted very casual and unscientific poll concerning the presidential election.  Most of my family and friends are Democrats, Dems of the conservative ilk.  My casual poll started something like this: "So what do you think about the presidential race this year... "  Then most would start by saying how disappointed they were that the Dems were having a black as their candidate.  This thought made me think long and hard about who Obama could choose that may aid his chance for the presidency.  Please note this is a realistic opinion and not an idealistic one, I am aiming for a Democratic win here folks.  My choice is Chuck Hagel.  Why?  He may be the only white male who could convince most Appalachian whites to vote for Obama.  Why?  Many could justify that they were not voting for Obama, they were voting for Hagel, think about this for a moment...

Back in Lil' Rhody; A Reflection on the Genius of Beer Advertisers\

Late Sunday night, say around 9pm, the First Family of LRBC returned to the manse and life in Rhode Island.  Pictures from the vacation will be up sometime this evening (yesterday I had to spend a majority of the day at DHS getting insurance forms straightened out).  By the way - only the camera was stolen, not the Ipod (it was in my backpack).

While driving the high double digit hours in the van from RI to WV to GA to VA to RI I spent a good amount of time thinking about how ingenious the marketers of beer are.  This theme was further highlighted when InBev purchased Anheuser-Busch this week.

Here are my reasons why the smartest people in America are in the halls of beer marketing buildings (initially this thought was a lament that they were there and not helping mainline churches employ some skilled marketing).

1.  They were able to take a diet drink and market it to men but not call it a diet drink.  All diet beers are called Light not diet, which they truly are.  What other food or beverage has been able to pull this off?  None.  No man, no matter how masculine and macho they are has a problem approaching a bar and ordering a (fill in the blank of your favorite beer maker ) Light.  

2.  The recent product development of Light beer with "real" Lime.  The other day while I was perusing the beer selection at the local liquor store a man came up to the cooler and got a case out which appeared an odd greenish color.  Another gentlemen who was right near asked "Is that stuff any good?"  The future purchaser of the case said "Oh yeah, this stuff is great after a day in the hot sun, and you know it has real lime in it."  

While back in WV I went out to lunch with my brother-in-law at a local establishment (which is an offshoot of an original restaurant that I used to work at, so did my b-i-l).  My b-i-l ordered us a round of the blank Light with Lime.  I gotta admit, it wasn't all that bad - a nice beverage choice on a hot humid day.  My b-i-l hit the nail on the head when he remarked "it is like throwing down lemonade."  It was.  (Just for the record WV and MS beer have the lowest alcohol contents in the nation).

What genius, take a drink and put "real lime" in it to hit Corona right in the kisser.  

3.  While on vacation I ordered a PBR to go with my pulled pork BBQ sandwich, the cost of the brew was $2 for a pint.  That means a six pack of PBR would then run $12.00.  Can you imagine paying $12 for a six pack of PBR, but yet no one thinks anything of it.  Most of us will gladly spend $2 to $3 for a bottle of beer or a draft beer while at a restaurant.  That is pure genius. Why does this happen?  Restaurants make the most money on the markup of alcoholic beverages, they buy beer at a discounted rate then charge at least 300% more for it.  Nevertheless the PBR went down well with my sandwich.  (also, if you haven't noticed PBR is now an underwriter of NPR, another genius move - make NPR listeners think PBR is a hip alternative to craft beer and somehow above other mass produced beers.)

06 July 2008

Like a Thief in the Night...

The family and I are on an undisclosed island off the coast of a southern state.  We made our way from RI via WV.  Sorry Ron, I wanted to stop by and say hello but was unable.  We did stop by Athens and saw a couple of folk from Athens Baptist (more on this later).  Sorry to say no pictures right now.  Why?  While ind WV someone broke into the van and stole our Ipod and Camera.  Yesterday we bought a new camera so hopefully we will have some pictures soon.