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.

 

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Concert report

Just over a week ago my wife and I saw Kansas in concert in Scottsdale. I saw Kansas way back in the “80’s” but my spouse hadn’t and she didn’t know they incorporate violin in many of their songs which sets them apart from most classic rock bands. It was great, they did Carry On Wayward Son as the encore!

Late last summer we saw Alice Cooper, Deep Purple and the Edgar Winter Band where Alice who is an Arizona resident was an incredible showman. Deep Purple is the oldest touring group and it’s their final tour. That’s probably a good thing and Edgar Winter doesn’t sing much but he still plays well.

Just over a year ago we saw Ann Wilson of Heart at the Celebrity Theatre which slowly turns ensuring you get a good look at the group. It’s sad that the Wilson sisters cannot mend their fence because they were so good together. Ann is the lead singer and she did most of their hits but carefully selected those where she didn’t have to hit the high notes. We saw Heart almost seven years ago when they were here with Def Leppard, Journey, and Billy Squire. Heart was the best of the show.

At the same venue in Scottsdale just over three years ago, we saw the Moody Blues outdoors which was the coldest May night in history. It was a great show and the Moody Blues said: “We asked our agent to book us in warm climates, I thought this was Phoenix, where’s the heat?”

 

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.

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.

Lopsided news from networks

Growing up everybody, for the most part, trusted and believed what you read, heard or saw in the news. Then there was a trust and respect that was earned by journalists and reporters for most of us it was the only source and contact with the outside world. Then things evolved as TV brought us live video from the Vietnam War and from there we’ve been on the technology express.

Now we get breaking news breaks online, we hear about a lot of major events only moments after it happens. As a result for the past ten years or more public trust in the traditional news sources has dwindled. “Public trust in traditional media has fallen to an all-time low as people increasingly favor their friends and contacts on the internet as sources of news and truth”, according to Financial Times earlier this year.

Case in point goes back to the 2016 Presidential election where the media’s reports were the other candidate won the election. The media along with the other party blamed the loss on Russian interference. Mainstream media and celebrities spent a shocking 75 percent of their time since then discussing Russian/Trump collusion theory.

It has now been proven to not only be false but the FBI has revealed that President Obama and Hillary are guilty of Russian collusion. Surprisingly the media hasn’t mentioned this news except for a minute of time and print. Trust is a difficult thing. The saying “fool me once shame on you fool me twice shame on me” is evident. What does the future hold for the networks?

Gateway to America

It’s widely accepted that the huge arch in St. Louis, Missouri is the gateway to the west. That being a fact and said, I just returned from a quick trip to the Utah mountains. The Wasatch Range of which we spent a majority of our time is the western edge of the Rockies. Mount Nebo at 11,928 feet is over two miles high and is the highest peak of the Wasatch that stretches into Idaho. This is a high, daunting, beautiful gateway to the greater northwest territory. I felt I was on the Top of the world looking down on creation.

After you cross this range you drop into Salt Lake City which is a huge valley much like Phoenix. It’s also the second most arid state after Nevada. Amazingly all 29 of Utah’s counties have mountains. That’s rough country.

There are almost countless canyons across the state that offer breathtaking views and can actually take your breath away because of the thin air. That doesn’t stop the hard-core bicyclists that climb these ascents constantly during the summer months.

Park City is in the Wasatch mountain range featured the 2002 winter Olympics and you can see the Olympic park from highway 224 which is maybe 10 minutes from town. The town is a huge ski destination but originally in the 1800’s was then known as the silver mining town.

Quill to parchment

The quill to parchment method of writing was used for centuries, no for two millennia with paper finally replacing parchment as the writing surface. Although it is reported that paper was invented in China about 105 AD made of bark, fibers of rags, and hemp. Before the quill, the writing instrument was the reed pen who’s origin was about 400 BC. Both were dipped into ink to write with, although the quill was much more durable made of a feather that could be cut down to sharpen it for extended use much like a pencil.

The pen and paper obviously are still used but is slowly being phased out with tablets and computers as the writer’s choice. It should be mentioned that the quill and reed pen utilized capillary action where ink was drawn up into the instrument and slowly released as you wrote on the surface. You think there’s a problem with modern fountain pens there was no comparison for an entire document could be destroyed by a pause with ink flowing and/or dripping across your work.

Progress has yielded convenience and efficiency to our fingertips. We have it so easy compared to our ancestors and still, some of us balk at sending a relative so much as an email.  Imagine how hard that letter would have been with a quill and parchment. The mind can only imagine what the future has in store for later generations as a means to communicate. Telepathy?

Can it always get better?

What can be better than just that for the Daily Post word? The term brings to mind for me the film As good as it gets, starring Jack Nicholson, Helen Hunt, Greg Kinnear and an all-star cast. That poses the question how often are things as good as it gets? How often can they be better?

Generally speaking when we’re trying to improve on something we’re working to get better at it. Let’s look back at Hollywood for a moment. When we see a movie the audience is typically moved by the performances but when it comes to the critics that may not be the story.  We sometimes think, did they see the same picture that we did? We loved it yet they gave it a very poor review sometimes with only one star. The critics thought the movie could have been better.

As ratings go there’s poor, good, better and best. As movies go opinions vary upon who you ask. The same is with people. Some think that someone is better than another or anyone else in some cases. For those that believe in God or a Supreme Being the deity sees all are the same in their eyes, it’s up to them to judge. The same God has provided values for us to go by. The evil perpetrators are just that. But those of us who think we’re better than the other should look at themselves first.  I’m impressed with Values.com.

Take this picture for example. It’s of the San Francisco Peaks in Flagstaff, Arizona. The picture could be much better if it were zoomed in on the mountains. The picture was taken about six weeks ago and not only did the Peaks have snow but the Arizona snow bowl was still open for skiing. The Navajo nation’s term for these peaks means “peak that never thaws”. Yesterday we had our hottest day this year of 108 degrees. I know some of that snow is gone but it remains 30 to 50 degrees cooler than Phoenix year round. Flagstaff is over 7,000 feet in elevation, the peaks are the highest point in the state at over 12,600 feet. Surprised?

 

A juicy story brewing

More people are history buffs than you would imagine. In fact, there are more people interested in the history behind the Salem witch trials as evident with all the TV shows, movies, and documentaries. The supernatural is something that science cannot explain so it mystifies people and plenty of juicy stories originate from the early beginnings.

The witch burning, hangings, and the little-known laying weights or heavy stones on their chests to obtain a confession or until it often killed them are all a curious thing. Back then some men in power used the process to eliminate their competition. Sad how people could react and allow such terrible things to be done because of fear. But we don’t have any of that today -right?

So back in the day, we had the TV show Bewitched and the more recent movie by the same name. My favorites are Hocus Pocus starring Bette Midler which is more of a comedy along with Practical Magic starring Sandra Bullock and Nichole Kidman. Then there’s Witches of Eastwick and literally hundreds of other movies and TV shows. Who out there is amazed that Supernatural is in season 12? I personally like “the boys” and their cast of misfits. Maybe it’s the classic rock evident throughout the series.

The Daily Post