Eight Meme

Jacquandor has a quiz thing! And I’m a sucker for them

8 Things I am looking forward to:

1. Riding the bicycle more.

2. Carol finally being done with her schooling in early August. It’s exhausting for all of us.

3. I’m hoping for our annual trip to the Mid-Hudson area of NYS, though the school thing may interfere.

4. That month between Carol being done with school and Lydia entering kindergarten when I can go to racquetball directly from home and Carol will take Lydia to day care.

5. Getting the new Top Pop Singles book from Record Research.

6. September when it’ll presumably gets less hot. I burn incredibly easily these days.

7. September, which is my favorite sports month. U.S. Open tennis, end of the baseball season, beginning of football season.

8. Actually watching those TV shows I’ve recorded but not seen – Scrubs, The Office, 30 Rock.

8 Things I did yesterday:

1. Went to church.

2. Watched the news from Friday and Saturday.

3. Made pancakes.

4. Read old newspapers.

5. Rode the stationery bike.

6. Played board games with the child.

7. Read to the child.

8. Sing to the child.

8 Things I wish I could do:

1. Care about politics. I mean I participate, and I’ll probably be carrying petitions for two candidates this summer, but sometimes I sense a real futility.

2. See better – reading in bad light is a chore.

3. Catch up on some of the “I ought to read that” list.

4. Have my father meet my daughter,

5. Type; I’d make blogging easier.

6. Most of the handiwork (that I’m really quite awful at.

7. Sleep through the night.

8. Lose weight.

8 Shows I Watch

1. JEOPARDY!

2. 60 Minutes

3. This Week (ABC)

4. CBS Sunday Morning

5. Brothers & Sisters

6. Grey’s Anatomy

7. Bill Moyers Journal

8. Scrubs

Just a couple more entries would sum up the entirety of my teevee watching these days.

8 Life Lessons I have benefited from (or am TRYING to put into practice)

1. Listen more, talk less.

2. Please, please: Don’t be a litterbug, ’cause every litter bit hurts.

3. Absolute power corrupts absolutely.

4. Do, or do not. There is no try.

5. Take the road less traveled.

6. The squeaky wheel gets the grease.

7. Do unto others…

8. Smile, though your heart is aching.

Quizzes! Fun!! I love words with zz -give ’em the old raZZle daZZle.

Sweet Hitchhiker

Something Jacquandor cited reminded me of this: my primary form of transportation during my college days in New Paltz in the Mid-Hudson Valley of NYS was hitchhiking. I lived in Binghamton in the Southern Tier of NYS my first year in college, 150 miles and at least three highways away (Route 17, and then there were options). Even when I moved to New Paltz, there were friends to visit back in my hometown.

The easiest hitch I ever had involved me trying to get from New Paltz to Binghamton. Somehow, I found a large metal orange and white sign, perhaps cast off from a gas station. It said 17. I put it out on the outskirts of town and got picked up by a guy from the CIA who dropped me off at the Binghamton exit maybe a half mile from my grandmother’s house. Oh, the CIA is the Culinary Institute of America.

I lived briefly in Kingston, maybe a dozen miles away from New Paltz, and hitched back and forth on Route 32 as well.

But my regular hitch in my freshman year was with my buddy Jay Rose. It was exceedingly easy to thumb a ride to New York City; just stand at the Thruway entrance. What was more difficult was hitching back to New Paltz. I discovered that the best way was to take the subway #4 line as far north as possible, take a commuter bus as far north as it would go on 90 cents, and THEN start seeking rides.

For four months in 1977, I lived in Charlotte, NC, a place that I did not much enjoy. It had lousy mass transit and I was broke. Ultimately, I hitched out of Charlotte to Binghamton; it took about 24 hours. Hitching in the South in 1977 might not have been the wisest move, but it was an incident-free trip, though I was stuck outside of Harrisburg, PA seemingly forever.

I stopped hitching in 1979, not out of any sense of real danger, but because it just took too long. A 150-mile trip from Binghamton to Schenectady took over six hours on old Route 7, pre I-88.

The trip I remember best I did with my friend Alice. Friends of ours were in a terrible car accident; a couple died and the rest were in a hospital in Hornell, NY, pretty much in the middle of the state. We got through Binghamton OK, but had slow going past there. Then one guy finally picked us up. He wanted to save our souls, and surely our souls needed saving, for we appeared to be a mixed race couple, and miscegenation was a sin according to his interpretation of the Word. (His basis for this theory was the OT prohibition against Jews intermarrying, I’m guessing.) However, he was otherwise harmless and let us out when he got to where he was going.

Alice and I never did get to Hornell, since this involved traveling on a rural road, Route 34, and we may not have met the appropriate demographic profile to get picked up. Instead, we went back to New Paltz, in record time, considering it was the middle of the night by then.

We always wondered what that guy would have said if he had found out that Alice was a lesbian.
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In honor of John Fogerty’s birthday late last month, Sweet Hitchhiker – Creedence Clearwater Revival

ROG

May Ramblin’

I was listening to one of the few podcasts I follow regularly, Coverville; highly recommended, BTW. Anyway, there is sometimes a segment at the end called Musically Challenged, in which a listener provides a quiz for Coverville host Brian Ibbott, and usually for Brian’s wife Tina. Lo and behold, the quiz for episode 574 was provided by Tosy and Cosh. Tosy was the one who turned me onto Coverville.

I had requested of Brian that he play a Pete Seeger cover in honor of Pete’s 90th birthday a couple weeks ago. Well, Brian didn’t play any Pete covers on May 3, but instead dedicated the whole next show to Seeger. My request for one song became the inspiration for the entire episode. I am pleased.
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A (weird) random conversation starter from Jaquandor.
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On June 6, 2009, in honor of the quadricentennial of Henry Hudson’s trip up the river that now bears his name, a musician will be playing the Mid-Hudson Bridge, the bridge that connects Poughkeepsie and Highland, near my college town of New Paltz. Not just playing ON the bridge, but actually playing the bridge as an instrument.
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1981 Video Predicts The Death Of Print Newspapers.
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Mr. Frog reviews the warts-and-all complete history of Sesame Street. It includes discussion of this scene which always chokes me up:

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How to test your copyright knowledge.
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A couple television programs you should watch. They’ve already aired, but thanks to the Internet, they are easily retrievable.

One is Bill Moyers Journal of April 17. Bill interviews the executive producer of HBO’s critically-acclaimed show THE WIRE, David Simon who “talks…about inner-city crime and politics, storytelling and the future of journalism today.” I’ve never seen The Wire, but now I must watch it on DVD. But you don’t have to have watched that vaunted program to appreciate his insights.

The other is a two-part 60 Minutes report narrated by Lesley Stahl. In Part 1 she “reports on flaws in eyewitness testimony that are at the heart of the DNA exonerations of falsely convicted people like Ronald Cotton, who has now forgiven his accuser, Jennifer Thompson.” In Part 2, she “explores the task of an eyewitness to choose a criminal out of line up through memory. Jennifer Thompson falsely selected Ronald Cotton as her rapist.” Thompson and Cotton are now friends, and have co-written a book, Picking Cotton.
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Dom Deluise as role model for Mark Evanier, of a sort.

ROG

Mother’s Day


My mom is a good woman. She’s not particularly flashy; whereas my father would dominate a room, my mom would work quietly in the background. If they were casting The Hare and the Tortoise, my father would be the Hare, running off in all directions , not necessarily along the designated path. My mother would plug along unobtrusively. And you know how that story turned out.

At my father’s funeral, my sister sang “Wind Beneath My Wings” to my mother on behalf of my father. No, my father never sang that, probably seldom said it. (And yes, it’s a treacly song, but one gets a pass when dealing with grief.)

There were lots of adults in my mother’s early life, including at least one uncle, one aunt, and a very domineering maternal grandmother. Then she married this multitalented singer-painter-bunch of other hyphenates. Perhaps this explains that at some level, she’s still finding herself.

I haven’t seen my mom in over a year, though we talk on the phone regularly, but I’ll see her next month, ironically around Father’s Day.

Happy Mother’s day, Mom.

Carol’s a good mom. Lydia and I almost certainly wouldn’t get out the door in time every weekday to catch the bus if not for her. While I dress the child, Carol does her hair and makes sure I have the right accouterments, whether it be blankets for nap time or her swimsuit. At night, she picks her up from daycare, makes us dinner, makes sure she has clean clothes. I usually give the medicines and get her into the pajamas, but Carol makes sure Lydia’s teeth are brushed and flossed before I read stories and sing songs. And on Thursday nights, when I have church choir rehearsal, Carol does all of the tasks above.

It’s not just the functions, though. Lydia feels safe and secure with her mommy, and that makes me very happy.

I’m sure Lydia has made something for her award-winning mom so she can wish her a Happy Mother’s Day as well.
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Best wishes to Gordon’s mom re: her liver transplant. And to Gordon as well.
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Jaquandor’s loving tribute to his late mother-in-law.


ROG