Nashville cats

Nashville is known as Music City USA. It’s much, much more than the Grand old Oprey,  as so very many stars got their start on a local stage inside a bar. This mural on the wall outside of Tootsie’s orchid lounge is one of the most famous venues for starting artists.

Today there are dozens of clubs that feature live talent day and night. I would compare Tootsie’s to the Apollo where the people determine the best talent. The difference is these clubs have band’s in front, back and on multiple floors.

In particular everyone knows Nashville is the country music Capitol featuring music row a road lined with record companies. There are also museums for many of the biggest stars like Johnny Cash, Willie Nelson, Patsy Cline and more.

If you’re not familiar with those names perhaps you’ve heard of Ray Stevens. We got to see him perform at his own venue called CabaRay. He said he was a “frustrated architect” seeing all the flaws he encountered over the years. His club was incredible much like the very old Vegas style.

Ray is not only a great singer he’s an awesome comedian. Our faces hurt from laughter. Many of his songs crossed all the genres including Everything is Beautiful, a lesson for today.

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In only a days time

This only goes to demonstrate that a lot can happen in a days time. Seventeen years ago on tomorrow September 11th terror reigned down on the World trade center towers, the Pentagon and another plane was prevented from killing others by courageous passengers.

Some might compare the act to the attack on Pearl Harbor that put the USA in WWII. Regardless, those that perpetrated these attacks, mass murders were self-serving psychopaths. That act 17 years ago began the war on radical Isam.

Where were you during 911?

That week 17 years ago I flew in North Carolina for national sales meetings. On my arrival the airport it was bustling, busy with business nearly elbow to elbow with people. It should also be mentioned that the airlines had their own security there wasn’t a TSA. Then our sales meeting was suddenly disrupted by the first plane and we saw the second one live on TV in horror. After all, we were about 280 miles away from the Pentagon tragedy.

I was supposed to leave on Friday afternoon but all flights were canceled. I called the airline over and over day after day and finally got on the first flight out on Sunday which they claimed could be overbooked.

I arrived at the airport, there was nobody in sight except military personnel. All the stores, restaurants and appeared even airlines were closed. I reported to my gate before my time, I was the only person there. Finally, a few more passengers showed up and more as the departure time drew near. At the last minute, a ticket taker popped out of the wall and we started to board.

The entire experience on my departure was eerie. From the airport to all the passengers suspicious of each other and the plane wasn’t even half occupied. Fear had taken over. The primary function of our federal government is to protect the people. On that day they failed miserably.

Working for the weekend

Is everybody working for the weekend? Especially if it’s for a holiday weekend the answer would be a strong yes. This year the 4th of July fell on a Wednesday breaking up the week without the three or four day weekend we’re accustomed to. I couldn’t remember the last time but it wasn’t that long ago as it happened in 2012.

This mid-week holiday was not only tough on us but was equally tough on the businesses that count on holiday weekends as their Black Friday sales event. So do you plan on celebrating the holiday on the days leading up to it or after including the weekend? Of course, everyone did some celebrating on the 4th but not to excess if you had to work the next day.

For those planning travel to see relatives and friends to celebrate the holiday together they had to make their arrangements and decided in advance. For those that had vacation days, they had to decide sometimes a month in advance to get off.

Regardless of your plans remember what Independence Day stands for. If it’s taken for granted or you need a refresher course here you go. As a little kid, I remember Red Skelton, though I don’t remember this clip on the Pledge of Allegiance.  It’s so apropos for today.  Enjoy.

 

A special day

It seems every birthday many of us take a retrospective look at our lives. That was the case for my wife and I who celebrated our birthdays this past Memorial Day weekend. Today is also time to take a retrospective look at all of the Daily Prompts as this is the final day.

I for one have really enjoyed the Daily prompts seeing how others put their spin on the word of the day. It was also a motivation for me to write a new blog entry. I’m not sure where I will look now for inspiration. At least they are keeping an archive of the past entries online.

If you saw the picture above of birthday balloons in our front room; my wife’s associates were going to fill her office with balloons but fortunately they went this direction instead. Seeing the big cat balloons I commented that I haven’t seen balloons that large since the Macy’s parade.

Wherever she’s worked her staff has always shown that kind of appreciation for her on special occasions. She’ also stayed in touch with many of these people years later. Some of these people are now spread across the country.

As a kid, I thought it was really neat that my birthday was often so close or even on a national holiday. In fact, we were in Williams, Arizona on my birthday about ten years ago having lunch at a Route 66 restaurant watching the Memorial Day parade go by when it started snowing! Now that was a day to forever remember.

Suddenly

Everybody experiences sudden or abrupt things happening every day. Let’s say you’re at MLB ballgame and you see the pitch going towards the batter and suddenly it’s stopped. How? A bird flew right into it. This actually happened when “Big Unit” Randy Johnson was pitching for Arizona years ago.

Johnson was known for his 100 MPH fastball and the incident abruptly paused the game. Things occur almost constantly with sudden starts or ends. The adage all good things must come to an end validates this phenomenon.

It no sooner began and it’s over. Let me know an adage that you like.

Sunrise moonglow

How often does the moon appear like this during sunrise? We’re accustomed to seeing both high above our heads throughout the day and/or night. Of course, the birds have their birds-eye-view of the event from atop a light pole.

Both heavenly bodies are taken for granted and without one or the other, our planet would be devastated if not uninhabitable. Why is the sight of something like this so pleasing to not only our eyes but to the other forms of life?

Scientists claim they are just the result of the collision of planets and viola there you have earth. Still, in our hearts we know there’s more to the story than that. Many, nay, most people can appreciate the beauty of all of mother nature. The question that remains is why do we find it so incredible? The answer comes from Creationist scientists that say this was all created by a Supreme Being. The many religions agree with that assessment and the fact that so many cities small and large have churches on many corners supports the creator thesis.

Truth or false front

Halloween isn’t the only time we dress up in costumes. For most of us anyway it may be the only time we elevate our appearance to a costume. But many of us wear a mask everyday trying to be somebody else.

At home we let our real self out but in public and at work we try to look and act like someone who we would like to be. We’ve all done it especially during our school days. By day we’re this super popular socialite but at home we’re, well our-self.

Is it unhealthy living this duel-personality? There are some shrinks that would say it is then again most would say no it’s not. Like most things it’s dependent on whether we live it to the extreme like a true schizophrenic Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde.

The key is a moderation, you need to remain who you are, knowing that your true identity won’t slip away.

Super puzzling

The big game is only a matter of hours away. Despite the typical promotions, pomp, and circumstance the interest by fans is minimal. The two teams have the same record, nearly identical statistics so it should prove to be a better game than some in the past. Why the disinterest?

I’ve heard numerous radio personalities making these aforementioned statements about the Super Bowl and one reason they came up with that sounds feasible is the fact that it’s being held in frosty Minnesota. I mean the Pro Bowl was held in rainy Florida this year instead of Hawaii and we’re accustomed to the Super Bowl being played in a warmer climate especially those living in the northern parts of the country.

That may account for a small percentage of the disinterest. I believe this puzzled quandary is the culmination of this entire season. Anyone that has followed the huge controversy this year where many of the millionaire players that are paid to entertain us refused to stand for our National Anthem.

This inconsiderate act by hundreds of players across the league has led to fans burning their season tickets, a huge drop in attendance and of course an enormous drop in viewers on television as well.  Our veterans have been thoroughly disgusted by the players’ display (Vets provided their freedom to play the game) as are the fans. The players and the cowardly Commissioner should have picked a different time and place to air their concerns because millions of fans have boycotted your season, the playoffs and the Super Bowl. Congratulations players you have officially elevated the other sports to the top spots once again as the NFL has plummeted to new lows.

Good or bad is shocking

Since we are bombarded by social media every day we encounter good news and bad news on a regular basis. Either news can be shocking to us depending on what it is and how important the content is to us. Before the advent of social media, before the internet, we got our news in the paper, TV, a weekly magazine or from a friend or neighbor.

Receiving the news in person has the speaker witnessing the expression of shock on our face. The facial expression exchange can be priceless. How do you stay up-to-date with current events? Am I promoting gossip? Heavens no, that’s typically not trustworthy news anyway. If anything I’m just encouraging a little more human interaction.

Haven’t you seen the videos and commercials of people walking down the street so engrossed in their phone that they walk into a pole? If anything I would encourage more interaction with one another. A really old song may be appropriate here by Dionne Warwick’s What The World Needs Now Is Love.

New Year’s attitude resolutions?

Face it there are certain things we all choose to avoid. This encompasses everything. There are the odd jobs that we wish we didn’t have to do, people that are irritating us trips to the dentist and certain foods. We have an attitude, can we change it?

Personally, my biggest attitude is regarding foods. Why are we allergic to certain things and what foods do we claim to be allergic to in an act of avoidance? For most people, our taste for foods was developed as a child. Why do we have certain dislikes and happen to love other things?

Since it’s a new year do you have any resolutions to change your attitudes? What’s it take to make changes? Courage, determination, and willpower. Sadly, statistics reveal that at least 30 percent of resolutions are abandoned after three weeks. Do you have the courage and fortitude to succeed?