Friday, October 31, 2008
Today, after leaving a meeting I was on the road from noon til almost 2:30 making some deliveries and sales calls. From 12:00 until 2:00 is the Mike Gallagher Show. During the show, he spent quite a bit of time talking about a new video on YouTube with over 11,000,000 views. Just listening to the audio broadcast I got goosebumps and chills.
This is an EXTREMELY Powerful video. Watch it below and pass it around. Everyone needs to see this, no matter what side you are on.
Monday, October 27, 2008
And that is what Great Music is about. Bringing out strong, new emotions. Now, I have felt inspired before, but not in the sense that I had on Saturday. I felt like it was so important to serve as a good mentor to this young child.
So what is this song that the mere thought of it and hearing it in my head could bring forth this moment?
An amazing piece, "Don't Give Up, You Are Loved" by the incredibly talented Josh Groban.
And as always, please leave thoughts, stories, etc. in the comments along with any suggestions for future Great Music.
We all know that Chuck Norris can kick some ass, but this year he also has injected himself into the political process. First by endorsing (pointless for all celebrities-who cares) Mike Huckabee. But in the last week, Norris has stepped up to the plate with some very good perspective.
First, I read this article by Norris discussing what will (or should, among other things) cost Obamaramadingdongdiddleyhopeychangey the election. And he does not discuss ACORN (fraudulent registrations) or William Ayers (Domestic Terrorist), but the lack of decisiveness in b.HO's personality. It is a very good read.
And then this evening, when I open YouTube to get a video for Great Music Monday and I see that the NRA has a new video up of a commercial they have filmed with Chuck Norris about investigating the record of the candidates and protecting our 2nd Amendment Rights. Very Cool.
The video is embedded below.
Sunday, October 26, 2008
1. Home on the Range. I may be in love. A good looking red-headed Celtic gal who likes to shoot and cook. You'll leave hungry and trigger happy.
2. On Tap. This blog has three great authors. Cam Edwards-A radio talk show host of Cam and Company on NRANEWS.com and Patriot 144 on Sirius Satellite radio. The second is Jim Geraghty, a professional blogger, and third Marshall Manson, a political consultant. I used to watch Cam Edwards on the live webcast, but got out of the habit when job locations and their schedule changed.
3. Arts & Ammo: High Caliber Culture. Defending Western Culture and traditions through a rational discussion of the arts (emphasis on durable music) with unavoidable references to politics, religion, law, ranching, and the quest for a good martini.
All of them hit at least some on the 2nd Amendment and Gun Rights. Go and read.
Thursday, October 23, 2008
Just last night, a dozen hunters were gathered at this same fire telling stories, exchanging good-natured jabs, sharing jokes. All seemed good in the world. Many good laughs were had at the story of how our Native Scout had lost all his food the night before to some furry masked bandits. He assures us that he nearly stopped one with his war club. Then the joke becomes how could they have been brave enough to come into camp with all the snoring, especially the Grizzly Bear only six feet away. Crafty Devils.
But now, I am the only one left in camp. I stare up to the sky lost in a day dream. Watching the leaves fall in the crisp breeze, and thinking that it won't be long before these falling leaves are replaced by falling snowflakes.
Suddenly, my peaceful serenity is broken by the sound of thundering hooves approaching and 30 cows and calves lope by, being herded North for weaning.
I watch as the last black calf runs after his mother up the trail and ponder life. A grin comes across my face as I take the last draw from the pipe. It is time to get moving. I bury the fire pit, gather my gear, and hit the trail back to civilization.
Monday, October 20, 2008
And I don't know why.
The song is "Rocky Road to Dublin."
From Wikipedia:"Rocky Road to Dublin" is a fast-paced 19th century Irish song about a man's experiences as he travels to Dublin Ireland from his home in Tuam. The tune has a typical Irish rhythm, classified as a slip jig and is often performed instrumentally.
The words were written by D. K. Gavan, "The Galway Poet", for the English music hall performer Harry Clifton (1824-1872), who popularised the song.
I am actually going to post several videos of different people doing the song.
For starters, The Dubliners with lead singer, the late Luke Kelly. I am starting with this video for my friend Wes of Bodhran Roll, Please. At the Blogcrawl, he and I were discussing music in our inebriated state and I was trying to explain who Kelly was.
Another group I was trying to tell Wes about is a newer group called The High Kings which was put together by the David Downes, who established the amazing group Celtic Woman. The High Kings is a group of 4 very talented Celtic musicians.
This is their version of the song.
And no grouping of videos for the "Rocky Road to Dublin" would be complete without a group of innovators, for 46 years, The Chieftains (wiki) have been taking Celtic music to places it has never been before.
One simply cannot help but start your feet a tapping when this song is played.
As always, don't forget to leave comments and suggestions.
Sunday, October 19, 2008
A train hits you.
Also known as getting Railroaded.
Yep. That was me. Last week at the Fort Obie Rendezvous.
I arrived on Thursday night, later than I had planned as it was already well past dusk. I began setting up my lean-to and cracked a beer. It had been a long day. While I was setting up my camp, the Booshway, my friend Ark Builder and asked me to be the Head Dog Soldier for the weekend. Then before I could spit out a word, he said "Thanks" and walked away. I was left sputtering with the feeling that I had just be hit in the gut.
Friday came around and we had a very sparse kids day. I demonstrated some woodworking using old style hand tools. There was also people doing period dyeing, casting round-ball, showing off some fine guns and horns, and several others. The kids who were there got to see some neat stuff, but we had only a fraction of the normal attendance.
Friday afternoon, I got a chance to talk with the Booshway and his pater familius, Wil. And that is when the tracks started to rumble. After the poor showing at kids day, Wil suggested that he would run kids day if I would be Booshway next year. Of course, this is after he has been telling everybody at every event for 3 months that he was going to be the 2009 Booshway.
I thought my only saving grace was it is up to the camp at the Saturday night camp meeting to elect the next Booshway.
Fast forward to the Camp Meeting. The meeting is just getting started and Wil interjects himself into the conversation of the meeting. All he says is is "All in favor of Petey being Booshway next year? Opposed? Congratulations."
Did someone get the number from that locomotive. That kinda sucked getting hit by that.
Just what I need. Something else on on my plate.
Trek report later. Tired now. Busy week ahead. City Counsel Meeting Monday. Local Blue Lodge Tuesday. Blue Lodge Degree work in Wyoming Wedenesday-I am obligating two new Entered Apprentices. Sometime this week, a friend is hoping to pour concrete, and of course, work with the usual personnel headaches, plus added bonus headaches this week.
Thursday, October 16, 2008
Monday night I ended up working 'til 8:00pm and by the time I checked e-mail and put up the Great Music Monday, all I wanted to do was go to sleep.
Tuesday and Wednesday nights were completely used up creating Ye Old Catfish Report for the ONW Co. Tuesday was writing, layouts, and re-typing articles. Wednesday night was finishing my monthly column and then running copies, address labeling, stamps, folding, and sealing. By the time that was done, all I could do was drag myself up the stairs.
Tonight, after an executive meeting at work from about 4:15 til 5:15, I had to come home and do all of my organizing and packing for this weekend's squirrel hunting trek. Finally, I got to sit down at the computer, and check e-mail and such.
Tomorrow morning is making Scotch eggs first and then on to the trek.
Hopefully I can post a recap of the trek and give the explanation Sunday night.
Monday, October 13, 2008
But for now, the music.
This week, we are going back a few years to visit "The Man in Black" Johnny Cash. And for the life of me I can't figure out why, but this week the selection is a "love" song of sorts.
Sitting in a field, surrounded by all the amazing beauty of nature, the mountains and streams, silver maples and the wildlife passing by, but even with all of this, the "Flesh and Blood" needs "Flesh and Blood."
As always, please leave thoughts in comments along with any suggestions for other great music.
Sunday, October 12, 2008
Monday, October 6, 2008
So what better way than to go the group that inspired this weekly feature, the Trans-Siberian Orchestra.
The piece is "Requiem (The Fifth)" which is from TSO's rock-opera "Beethoven's Last Night"
by Paul O'Neill
Music By Paul O'Neill, Robert Kinkel, & Jon Oliva
On a late night in the spring of 1827 the city of Vienna is experiencing the largest lightning storm in its long history. Within a large disheveled room, Ludwig Von Beethoven is slumped over his piano and on the piano sits the just completed manuscript for his Tenth Symphony. It is his final, and he is certain, his greatest work.
From the shadows a beautiful spirit, Fate, and her deformed dwarf son, Twist, emerge to inform Beethoven that this is to be his last night on earth. They are accompanied by numerous spirits and ghosts from his past, and he finds their babbling unbearable. He begs them to leave, but Twist tells him that as shadows they only exist by the light that Beethoven's life has cast and that light is slowly dimming. With each successive crack of lightning the spirits all draw closer.
At the stroke of midnight, Mephistopheles suddenly appears and informs Beethoven that he is there to collect the composer's soul. Beethoven, faced with eternal damnation, is terrified and claims that it cannot be his time, that he has yet to complete his Tenth Symphony. Mephistopheles looks at the manuscript and then, with seemingly uncharacteristic generosity, offers to give him as much additional time as he needs as long as he will tell him now what parts he plans to add or change. His bluff called, Beethoven is forced to admit that he would not change a single note.
The Devil nods thoughtfully and then makes the composer another offer. If Beethoven will give him all his music, allowing Mephistopheles to wipe it from the memory of man, he will return his soul to him. Beethoven is overwhelmed by the situation. Fearing an eternity of damnation and torment he is desperate to reclaim his soul, but the thought of losing his music, his life's work, causes him to hesitate.
Mephistopheles, sensing his confusion, offers to leave for one hour before returning for Beethoven's answer. As the devil is turning to leave Beethoven notices that the hands of the clock are moving faster than normal. When he points this out to Mephistopheles, the devil replies that the maestro should consider it a final favor because where Beethoven is going, they never turn at all.
Crushed by the dilemma he finds himself in, Beethoven tries to recall the particular actions in his life that have led to his damnation. In anger, he confronts Fate for having dealt him such a cruel hand. Taken aback, she asks what he would have her change. Forced to review his life, he discovers that the removal of what he considers the most painful moments of his life would also remove the inspiration for what he considers his finest works. He also realizes that his music is who he is, the reason for his existence, and decides that he would rather suffer for eternity than have it destroyed. He cannot remove this music that he has seen bring so much joy to so many.
When Mephistopheles returns to find his offer refused, he quickly replaces it with another. If Beethoven will only give him the un-released Tenth Symphony (which no one else has heard, so he reasons it will never be missed) he will return the maestro's soul. Beethoven agonizes once more and after conferring with the ghost of Mozart, again decides that he is unable to destroy his music.
In a final desperate attempt to obtain the Tenth Symphony, Mephistopheles points out through a window to a child sleeping in the gutter. He tells the old man that he, Mephistopheles, owns this child's life and in great detail lists all the horrors and suffering that she will experience in her short existence. If Beethoven will release to him this final musical creation, then Mephistopheles will give up all claims on the child, irrevocably removing himself, all his evil and unhappiness from the child's life.
Beethoven turns away from the sight of the little girl, determined to pronounce a firm and final no. But before the words can leave his mouth he finds himself once more looking towards the child. He desperately tries to convince himself that she means nothing to him. Besides, she is not his responsibility and even if he does save her there are millions more like her. This single life will make no difference while his symphony will bring joy to countless generations.
Despite his best efforts he can not bring himself to leave the child to this evil and collapsing on the piano bench, he tells the devil that he has a deal.
Mephistopheles dances with delight as he picks up the manuscript never noticing Twist who sneaks over and whispers in Ludwig's ear, "How do you know that Mephistopheles will keep his word?" Beethoven sits up and repeats the question aloud. Mephistopheles, never looking up from examining his prize, replies that Beethoven can draw up his own wording for a contract that they will write on the back of a page torn from a bible. Beethoven glances questioningly towards Fate who is still watching from the background. She nods her head for even the shadows know that a contract written on such sacred paper is unbreakable, even by the devil himself.
Beethoven, totally exhausted, mutters his consent but is unable to write the words that will bring about the destruction of his beloved Tenth. Fate, seeing his dilemma, offers to write down the agreement for him and he hands the paper to her. As he stares out the window Fate writes,
It is agreed upon this night, March 26, 1827, between the undersigned, that the music of the Tenth Symphony, composed by Ludwig von Beethoven, first born son of Johann and Maria von Beethoven, in the city of Bonn, shall henceforth be the property of Mephistopheles, Lord of Darkness and first fallen from the grace of God. It is also understood that it is his intention to remove any signs of this music from the memory of man for all eternity. In exchange for the destruction of the aforementioned music it is also agreed that Mephistopheles and all his minions will remove themselves from the life of the child presently sleeping in the gutter directly across from the window of this room. This removal of influence is to be commenced immediately upon signing and to be enforced for all eternity.
Ludwig Von Beethoven
Mephistopheles reads the paper, signs it and pushes it in front of Beethoven. Without even looking at the document the composer signs the paper. Immediately, Mephistopheles reaches over the piano, seizes the Tenth's manuscript and thrusts it over a lit candle. It is engulfed in a wall of flames. But when the flames have died down the devil is stunned to find that not only does the manuscript still exist, but it is not even singed. Thrusting it back over the candle it is once again engulfed in flames only to emerge unscathed.
Sensing that he has been tricked, he screams for an explanation but Beethoven's expression tells him that he is as shocked at the turn of events as the devil himself. As Mephistopheles is glancing once more at the manuscript he hears a giggling from the darkness. There he sees Twist who is poorly concealing his delight.
"What are you laughing at you wretched troll?"
"The composer's parents gave birth to a son prior to the maestro's birth. They named him Ludwig von Beethoven but he died within the year. The man before you is Ludwig Von Beethoven, second born of Johann & Maria. You have purchased the Tenth Symphony of Ludwig Von Beethoven, first born of Johann & Maria, if he ever writes one." Mephistopheles glares at Fate, who smiles back at him demurely. Then, throwing the music back at Beethoven, he screams in frustration and disappears in an explosion of smoke and flame.
Beethoven is surprised by Mephistopheles' rapid departure and asks if he is not coming back to collect his soul. To which Fate replies that he never had any claim to his soul.
"But Mephistopheles said..."
"He is the devil," Fate replies, "He lies." And with those words a warm feeling of peace spreads throughout Beethoven's body and across his soul.
When he asks Fate what is to happen next, she tells him that it is time for him to rest, for tonight he will dream a new dream within the gates of paradise. As the words weave their way into his soul, Beethoven lies down on the couch near his piano and begins a new dream.
With the departure of his soul the storm begins to break and a stillness settles over the room as one by one the ghosts and shadows fade away. All seems at peace until the sudden re-appearance of Twist returning through a window. He gazes about the room, a look of mischievous delight spread across his face. Scampering over to the piano, he takes the manuscript for the Tenth Symphony and then climbing up a bookcase, carefully slips it behind a wall. Here it will remain hidden, the world blissfully unaware of its existence, until that one day in the future when it will be discovered and it will once more live again.
To watch the video in Realplayer.
To watch the video in Media Player.
Basically, I bruised my ass.
Went to the Chiropractor this morning. On and off the table 3 times, used an ultrasound, table traction, and bio-freeze. I did feel a bit better, but the bruised tail bone is not pleasant to sit on.
Probably take a few days to quit being a literal pain in my ass.
At least it is motivation to go do other things.
Sunday, October 5, 2008
As soon as the movie is over.
Dang. I am not normally this tired during the week.
Friday night, I was up late, and for the life of me I can't remember why. But it was after 12:30 before I hit the hay.
Saturday morning I had to be up early. And as I was taking my morning constitutional at 6:15 when my mother comes up the stairs to announce that there are cattle out. Well, that puts me in a bit of a rush. But by the time I get dressed and down stairs, the cattle have jumped the fence back into their pasture. Crisis averted.
So I feed Omar and we head up town for a 7:00am concrete pour of footings for an addition and a sidewalk at a friends house. It takes about an hour to get the concrete poured and then another to get everything finished and cleaned up.
I then headed to Canton to do some training with Omar. About an hour drive. It was a very good day. Got to explore some different ground, and put a live bird in front of him. Responded very well. After about 10 minutes, he was on a hard point, and had figured out how to work his nose into the wind. Plus, he got to run with some other puppies for a while. Also got to play around a big pond.
On the way back from Canton, I stopped at the Man From Ohio's and visited with him for about 3 hours. The worst part of the trip there? The stupid freaking "Scenic Drives." Those crazy bastards. In one town, I saw a line of people 9 blocks long waiting to go through a STOP sign. Idiots.
Finally, I got home, fed Omar and went back the friends house where I poured concrete in the morning to watch the Cubs game that didn't start til 9:00. If you don't know how it went, don't ask me. It just pisses me off. The three worst games of the season.
Finally, about 12:30am, I got to bed.
Slept til 11:00 this morning. As I am coming down stairs to take Omar outside and feed him, I slipped and fell, landing right on my ass and sliding down a couple of stairs. Luckily, Omar was about 4 steps behind me just looked puzzled at the string of profanity I let loose as I hobbled off the stairs hunched over. Tomorrow morning, I am going to be a chiropractor when he opens.
Had lunch with the parents and grandmothers followed by watching the Bears game and playing with Omar.
The rest of the afternoon has been spent trying to keep my back from hurting and planning for the week. Too much to do.
Now, time for bed.